成语寓言故事:The Snipe Grapples with the Clam鹬蚌相争
One day, a clam proudly opened its shells to sun itself on the river bank. A snipe passed by the clam and stretched its bill to peck at the clam's flesh.
The clam hurriedly closed its shells and tightly grasped the snipe's bill between them. Despite all its efforts, the snipe could not extricate its bill.
The clam could not get itself free to return to the river either.
Then the clam and the snipe began to quarrel.
The snipe said angrily:
"If it doesn't rain for one or two days, there will be no water. And you can't return to the river, then surely you will die anyway."
The clam also said angrily:
"If I don't let go of you for one or two days, you won't be able to pull out your bill. Don't hope that you can live."
Neither the clam nor the snipe would give in, and they kept on grappling. At this moment, a fisherman came along the riverside with a fishing net. He was very glad to see the snipe and the clam at a deadlock. Without the least effort, he caught them both, put them into his fish basket and carried them home.
成语寓言故事:Buying Bones with 1,000 Pieces of Gold千金买骨
Shortly after King Zhao of the State of Yan came to the throne, he went to visit Guo Kui, an able and virtuous scholar, and asked for his advice on how to govern the state and make it strong, and how to avenge his father and wipe off the shame of the state. Guo Kui told him the story of "Buying Bones with 1,000 Pieces of Gold".
In ancient times, there was a king very fond of horses that could cover 1,000 1i a day. He sent many people, sought many means and spent lots of money to buy such horses. Yet three years had passed, and no such horses were available.
One day, a guard volunteered to help and said to the king: "I am willing to buy a thousand-li steed for Your Majesty."
The king was pleasantly surprised. He asked:"You? Can you make it?"
"Your Majesty, you can rest assured," replied the guard.
The king complied with his request and let him go on his mission.
The guard sought for the horse wholeheartedly. He spent three months, and after much effort found out the whereabouts of such a horse. But when he hastened there, the horse had already died. Without the least hesitation, he bought the bones of the horse with 500 pieces of gold, and returned to report to the king.
On seeing the horse bones the guard had actually bought, the king flew into a rage.
"You! What I want is a live horse, but you have bought the bones of a dead horse. What is the use? You have wasted 500 pieces of gold. What punishment do you think you deserve?"
The guard replied calmly:
"Your Majesty, this is to let the general public know that Your Majesty is willing to pay a high price for even a dead thousand-li horse, let alone a live one. All the people in the world will know that Your Majesty wishes to buy a thousand-li horse sincerely. Your Majesty, don't be angry. Just wait and the horse you want will come very soon."
As the guard had expected, the king bought three thousand-li horses within one year.
中国成语寓言故事:Going South by Driving the Carriage North南辕北辙
One day, Ji Liang went to see the King of Wei and reported:
"When I was coming here, I saw a man on the road driving a horse ca币age north in great haste.
"I asked him: `Where are you going in such haste?'
"He replied: `I am going to the State of Chu.'
"I said: `If you want to go to the State of Chu, you should go south. Why are you going north? You are going the wrong way!’
"He said: `My horse is big and strong. It can run as fast as flying. It doesn't matter to run a little more.'
"I told him: `Though your horse is good, you are going in the wrong direction.'
"He said: `It doesn't matter. I have lots of money.'
"I told him again: `Though you have lots of money, this is not the road to the State of Chu.'
"He said: `It doesn't matter. My driver is good and strong.'
"Finally I told him: `Though your driver is good and strong, this is not the road to the State of Chu."
The King of Wei blurted out: "Alas, this man is too obstinate. He doesn't realize that if his direction is wrong, the better he is equipped, the farther he would be away from his destination."