The Philosopher, the Ants, and Mercury





A PHILOSOPHER witnessed from the shore the shipwreck of a vessel,

of which the crew and passengers were all drowned. He inveighed

against the injustice of Providence, which would for the sake of

one criminal perchance sailing in the ship allow so many innocent

persons to perish. As he was indulging in these reflections, he

found himself surrounded by a whole army of Ants, near whose nest

he was standing. One of them climbed up and stung him, and he

immediately trampled them all to death with his foot. Mercury

presented himself, and striking the Philosopher with his wand,

said, "And are you indeed to make yourself a judge of the

dealings of Providence, who hast thyself in a similar manner

treated these poor Ants?'





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