Fantastic Fables

by Ambrose Bierce

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The Literary Astronomer

THE Director of an Observatory, who, with a thirty-six-inch refractor, had discovered the moon, hastened to an Editor, with a four-column account of the event.

"How much?" said the Editor, sententiously, without looking up from his essay on the circularity of the political horizon.

"One hundred and sixty dollars," replied the man who had discovered the moon.

"Not half enough," was the Editor's comment.

"Generous man!" cried the Astronomer, glowing with warm and elevated sentiments, "pay me, then, what you will."

"Great and good friend," said the Editor, blandly, looking up from his work, "we are far asunder, it seems. The paying is to be done by you."

The Director of the Observatory gathered up the manuscript and went away, explaining that it needed correction; he had neglected to dot an m.

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