The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which.
Man is the only creature that consumes without producing. He does not give milk, he does not lay eggs, he is too weak to pull the plough, he cannot run fast enough to catch rabbits. Yet he is lord of all the animals. He sets them to work, he gives back to them the bare minimum that will prevent them from starving, and the rest he keeps for himself.
Beasts of England, beasts of Ireland,Beasts of every land and clime,Hearken to my joyful tidingsOf the golden future time.Soon or late the day is coming,Tyrant Man shall be o'erthrown,And the fruitful fields of EnglandShall be trod by beasts alone.Rings shall vanish from our noses,And the harness from our back,Bit and spur shall rust forever,Cruel whips shall no more crack.Riches more than mind can picture,Wheat and barley, oats and hay,Clover, beans, and mangel-wurzels,Shall be ours upon that day.Bright will shine the fields of England,Purer shall its water be,Sweeter yet shall blow its breezesOn the day that sets us free.For that day we all must labour,Though we die before it break;Cows and horses, geese and turkeys,All must toils for freedom's sake.Beasts of England, beasts of Ireland,Beasts of every land and clime,Hearken well and spread my tidingsOf the golden future time.
Comrades!' he cried. 'You do not imagine, I hope, that we pigs are doing this in a spirit of selfishness and privilege? Many of us actually dislike milk and apples. I dislike them myself. Our sole object in taking these things is to preserve our health. Milk and apples (this has been proved by Science, comrades) contain substances absolutely necessary to the well-being of a pig. We pigs are brainworkers. The whole management and organisation of this farm depend on us. Day and night we are watching over your welfare. It is for your sake that we drink the milk and eat those apples.
It had become usual to give Napoleon the Credit for every Successful achievement and every stroke of good fortune. You would often hear one hen remark to another, Under the guidance of our leader, Comrade Napoleon, I have laid five eggs in six days or two cows, enjoying a drink at the pool, would exclaim,thanks to the leadership of Comrade Napoleon, how excellent this water tastes!...
...out from the door of the farmhouse came a long file of pigs, all walking on their hind legs...out came Napoleon himself, majestically upright, casting haughty glances from side to side, and with his dogs gambolling round him. He carried a whip in his trotter. There was a deadly silence. Amazed, terrified, huddling together, the animals watched the long line of pigs march slowly round the yard. It was as though the world had turned upside-down. Then there came a moment when the first shock had worn off and when, in spite of everything-in spite of their terror of the dogs, and of the habit, developed through long years, of never complaining, never criticising, no matter what happened-they might have uttered some word of protest. But just at that moment, as though at a signal, all the sheep burst out into a tremendous bleating of- "Four legs good, two legs better! Four legs good, two legs better! Four legs good, two legs better!" It went on for five minutes without stopping. And by the time the sheep had quieted down, the chance to utter any protest had passed, for the pigs had marched back into the farmhouse.
I trust that every animal here appreciates the sacrifice that Comrade Napoleon has made in taking this extra labour upon himself. Do not imagine, comrades, that leadership is a pleasure! On the contrary, it is a deep and heavy responsibility. No one believes more firmly than Comrade Napoleon that all animals are equal. He would be only too happy to let you make your decisions for yourselves. But sometimes you might make the wrong decisions, comrades, and then where should we be?
As Clover looked down the hillside her eyes filled with tears. If she could have spoken her thoughts, it would have been to say that this was not what they had aimed at when they had set themselves years ago to work for the overthrow of the human race. These scenes of terror and slaughter were not what they had looked forward to on that night when old Major first stirred them to rebellion. If she herself had had any picture of the future, it had been of a society of animals set free from hunger and the whip, all equal, each working according to his capacity, the strong protecting the weak, as she had protected the lost brood of ducklings with her foreleg on the night of Major's speech. Instead--she did not know why--they had come to a time when no one dared speak his mind, when fierce, growling dogs roamed everywhere, and when you had to watch your comrades torn to pieces after confessing to shocking crimes. There was no thought of rebellion or disobedience in her mind. She knew that, even as things were, they were far better off than they had been in the days of Jones, and that before all else it was needful to prevent the return of the human beings. Whatever happened she would remain faithful, work hard, carry out the orders that were given to her, and accept the leadership of Napoleon. But still, it was not for this that she and all the other animals had hoped and toiled.
Comrades," he said, "here is a point that must be settled. The wild creatures, such as rats and rabbits–are they our friends or our enemies? Let us put it to the vote. I propose this question to the meeting: Are rats comrades?"The vote was taken at once, and it was agreed by an overwhelming majority that rats were comrades. There were only four dissentients, the three dogs and the cat, who was afterwards discovered to have voted on both sides.
Friend of fatherless!Fountain of happiness!Lord of the swill-bucket! Oh, how my soul is onFire when I gaze at thyCalm and commanding eye.Like the sun in the sky,Comrade Napoleon!Thou are the giver ofAll thy creatures love,Full belly twice a day, clean straw to roll upon;Every beast great or small,Sleeps at peace in his stall,Thou watchest over all,Comrade Napoleon!Had I a sucking-pig,Ere he had grown as bigEven as a pint bottle or a a rolling-pinHe should have learned to beFaithful and true to thee,Yes, his first squeak should beComrade Napoleon!
Surely, comrades, you do not want Jones back?"Once again this argument was unanswerable. Certainly the animals did not want Jones back; if the holding of debates on Sunday mornings was liable to bring him back, then the debates must stop. Boxer, who had now had time to think things over, voiced the general feeling by saying: "If Comrade Napoleon says it, it must be right." And from then on he adopted the maxim, "Napoleon is always right," in addition to his private motto of "I will work harder.
The cat joined the Re-education Committee and was very active in it for some days. She was seen one dag sitting on a roof and talking to some sparrows who were just out of her reach. She was telling them that all animals were now comrades and that any sparrow who chose could come and perch on her paw; but the sparrows kept their distance.