9

THE CHESTNUT AND THE FIG TREE

Source: https://www.maxpixel.net/Fig-Leaf-Back-Light-Real-Coward-Fig-Tree-Fruits-1432291

A man who had climbed upon a certain fig tree, was bending the boughs toward him and plucking the ripe fruit, which he then put into his mouth to destroy and gnaw with his hard teeth.
The chestnut, seeing this, tossed its long branches and with tumultuous rustle exclaimed: “Oh Fig! How much less protected by nature you are than I. See how my sweet offspring are set in close array; first clothed in soft wrappers over which is the hard but softly lined husk. And not content with this much care, nature has also given us these sharp and close-set spines, so that the hand of man cannot hurt us.”
Then the fig tree began to laugh, and after the laughter it said: “You know well that man is of such ingenuity that he will bereave even you of your children. But in your case he will do it by means of rods and stones; and when they are felled he will trample them with his feet or hit them with stones, so that your offspring will emerge from their armor crushed and maimed; while I am touched carefully by his hands, and never, like you, with roughness”

LEONARDO DAVINCI, 1452-1519