Parturiunt Montes

“Parturient montes, nascetur ridiculus mus.” The Egyptian king Tachos sustained a long war against Artaxerxes Ochus, and sent to the Lacedemonians for aid. King Agesilaos went with a contingent, but when the Egyptians saw a little, ill-dressed lame man, they said: “Parturiebat mons; formidabat Jupiter; ille vero murem peperit.” (“The mountain laboured, Jupiter stood aghast, and a mouse ran out.”) Agesilaos replied, “You call me a mouse, but I will soon show you I am a lion.”

Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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