353. Tortoise And The Two Fishes

Once upon a time, during the reign of Brahmadatta, king of Benares, the Bodhisatta became a tree sprite on the bank of the Ganges. At the point where Ganges and Jumna meet, two fish met together, one from the Ganges and one from the Jumna. “I am beautiful!” said one, “No! I am beautiful!” said the other. The quarrel started. Not far from the Ganges they saw a Tortoise lying on the bank. The two fishes went to him and asked him to tell who is beautiful. The Tortoise answered, “The Ganges fish is beautiful, and the Jumna fish is beautiful; but I am more beautiful than you both.”

When the fish heard this, they cried, “Ah, you rascally Tortoise! You won’t answer our question, but you answer another one!”

Both the fishes left the place saying, “Mean fellow! He is blowing his own trumpet.”

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