Swift, the author of "Gulliver's Travels", had many friends and he often received presents from them. The presents were generally sent by messengers. Swift liked receiving presents, but he was far from being generous, and he never gave any tips to the messengers.
Once, however, a messenger boy, who had often brought him presents and had never yet got a tip, taught him a lesson.
One day the messenger boy came to Swift's house with a heavy basket full of game, fish and fruit. He knocked at the door and the author opened it himself. The boy gave him the basket and said it was from Mr. Brown. He was just going away when Swift stopped him and said, "Come back, my boy, and learn to be polite. Imagine yourself to be me and I will be you". Then he bowed politely to the messenger boy and said, "Sir, Mr. Brown sends to you a little present of game, fish and fruit, and asks you to do him the honour of accepting it".
"Oh, very well, my boy", replied the young messenger, "Tell Mr. BrownI am much obliged to him, andhere is half a crown for yourself".
Swift smiled and gave the witty messenger boy a generous tip, for the first time in his life.
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a messenger - посыльный
a present - подарок
witty - остроумный
generous - щедрый
taught him a lesson - дал ему урок, проучил
to teach, taught, taught - учить, обучать
to knock - стучать
learn to be polite - учись быть вежливым
imagine yourself to be me - представь, что ты это я
to bow - кланяться
game - дичь
to send, sent, sent - посылать
to do him the honor of accepting it - сделать (оказать) ему честь принять его (подарок)
here is half a crown for yourself - половина кроны для тебя
I am much obliged to him - очень ему благодарен
tips - чаевые;
to tip - давать чаевые