Aesop was born as a slave probably in Thrace ancient Greece in about 620BC, and he may or may not have been the writer of the fables!
No writings of his survive but many editions of' 'his' fables exist and are currently available. Aesop was highly regarded by the Greeks despite his origins as a slave.
In his cautionary tales animals speak and have human characteristics, the fables are often now told to children, but to the ancient Greeks the fable was a technique of criticism and persuasion especially valuable to the weak as a weapon against the powerful. In this particular fable the ass lets himself down when he opens his mouth - despite his finery, and makes a complete ass of himself! Politicians manage to do this on a regular basis.
This 8vo edition of Aesop's Fables was presented by Samuel Croxall, and printed in London in 1786.The illustrations are woodcuts, probably c1722.