5. Certain it is, he made his appearance at the very door where Harry was now sitting, in miserable plight, wet, dirty, and half starved; and that there he met Harry, who took a fancy to him, and Harry's grandmother, who drove him off with a broom.
6. Harry, at length, obtained permission for the little dog to remain as a sort of outdoor pensioner, and fed him with stray bones and cold potatoes, and such things as he could get for him. He also provided him with a little basket to sleep in, the very same which, turned up, afterward served Harry for a seat.
7. After a while, having proved his good qualities by barking away a set of pilferers, who were making an attack on the great pear tree, he was admitted into the house, and became one of its most vigilant and valued inmates. He could fetch or carry either by land or water; would pick up a thimble or a ball of cotton, if little Annie should happen to drop them; or take Harry's dinner to school for him with perfect honesty.
8. "Beg, Frisk, beg!" said Harry, and gave him, after long waiting, the expected morsel. Frisk was satisfied, but Harry was not. The little boy, though a good-humored fellow in the main, had turns of naughtiness, which were apt to last him all day, and this promised to prove one of his worst. It was a holiday, and in the afternoon his cousins, Jane and William, were to come and see him and Annie; and the pears were to be gathered, and the children were to have a treat.
9. Harry, in his impatience, thought the morning would never be over. He played such pranks—buffeting Frisk, cutting the curls off of Annie's doll, and finally breaking his grandmother's spectacles—that before his visitors arrived, indeed, almost immediately after dinner, he contrived to be sent to bed in disgrace.
10. Poor Harry! there he lay, rolling and kicking, while Jane, and William, and Annie were busy about the fine, mellow Windsor pears. William was up in the tree, gathering and shaking; Annie and Jane catching them in their aprons, and picking them up from the ground; now piling them in baskets, and now eating the nicest and ripest; while Frisk was barking gayly among them, as if he were catching Windsor pears, too!
11. Poor Harry! He could hear all this glee and merriment through the open window as he lay in bed. The storm of passion having subsided, there he lay weeping and disconsolate, a grievous sob bursting forth every now and then, as he heard the loud peals of childish laughter, and as he thought how he should have laughed, and how happy he should have been, had he not forfeited all this pleasure by his own bad conduct.
12. He wondered if Annie would not be so good-natured as to bring him a pear. All on a sudden, he heard a little foot on the stair, pitapat, and he thought she was coming. Pitapat came the foot, nearer and nearer, and at last a small head peeped, half afraid, through the half-open door.
13. But it was not Annie's head; it was Frisk's—poor Frisk, whom Harry had been teasing and tormenting all the morning, and who came into the room wagging his tail, with a great pear in his mouth; and, jumping upon the bed, He laid it in the little boy's hand.
14. Is not Frisk a fine, grateful fellow? and does he not deserve a share of Harry's breakfast, whether he begs for it or not? And little Harry will remember from the events of this day that kindness, even though shown to a dog, will always be rewarded; and that ill nature and bad temper are connected with nothing but pain and disgrace.
DEFINITIONS.—l. In-vert'ed, turned upside down. Por'rin-ger, a small metallic dish. 3. Rec-ol-lect'ed, brought back to mind. 5. Plight, condition. 6. Pen'sion-er, one who is supported by others. 7. Pil'fer-ers, those who steal little things. Vig'i-lant, watchful. Intimates, those living in the same house. 8. Holiday, a day of amusement. 9. Buf'fet-ing, striking with the hand. 11. Sub-sid'ed, become quiet. For'feit-ed, lost. 14. Con-nect'ed, united, have a close relation.
XXVIII. THE VOICE OF THE GRASS. (83) By Sarah Roberts.
1. Here I come, creeping, creeping, everywhere; By the dusty roadside, On the sunny hillside, Close by the noisy brook, In every shady nook, I come creeping, creeping, everywhere.
2. Here I come, creeping, creeping everywhere; All round the open door, Where sit the aged poor, Here where the children play, In the bright and merry May, I come creeping, creeping, everywhere.
3. Here I come, creeping, creeping, everywhere; You can not see me coming, Nor hear my low, sweet humming, For in the starry night, And the glad morning light, I come, quietly creeping, everywhere.
4. Here I come, creeping, creeping, everywhere; More welcome than the flowers, In summer's pleasant hours; The gentle cow is glad, And the merry birds not sad, To see me creeping, creeping, everywhere.
5. Here I come, creeping, creeping, everywhere; When you're numbered with the dead, In your still and narrow bed, In the happy spring I'll come, And deck your narrow home, Creeping, silently creeping, everywhere.
6. Here I come, creeping, creeping, everywhere; My humble song of praise, Most gratefully I raise, To Him at whose command I beautify the land, Creeping, silently creeping, everywhere.
XXIX. THE EAGLE. (84)
1. The eagle seems to enjoy a kind of supremacy over the rest of the inhabitants of the air. Such is the loftiness of his flight, that he often soars in the sky beyond the reach of the naked eye, and such is his strength that he has been known to carry away children in his talons. But many of the noble qualities imputed to him are rather fanciful than true.
2. He has been described as showing a lofty independence, which makes him disdain to feed on anything that is not slain by his own strength. But Alexander Wilson, the great naturalist, says that he has seen an eagle feasting on the carcass of a horse. The eagle lives to a great age. One at Vienna is stated to have died after a confinement of one hundred and four years.
3. There are several species of the eagle. The golden eagle, which is one of the largest, is nearly four feet from the point of the beak to the end of the tail. He is found in most parts of Europe, and is also met with in America. High rocks and ruined and lonely towers are the places which he chooses for his abode. His nest is composed of sticks and rushes. The tail feathers are highly valued as ornaments by the American Indians.
4. The most interesting species is the bald eagle, as this is an American bird, and the adopted emblem of our country. He lives chiefly upon fish, and is found in the neighborhood of the sea, and along the shores and cliffs of our large lakes and rivers.
5. According to the description given by Wilson, he depends, in procuring his food, chiefly upon the labors of others. He watches the fish hawk as he dives into the sea for his prey, and darting down upon him as he rises, forces him to relinquish his victim, and then seizes it before it again reaches the water.
6. One of the most notable species is the harpy eagle. This is said to be bold and strong, and to attack beasts, and even man himself. He is fierce, quarrelsome, and sullen, living alone in the deepest forests. He is found chiefly in South America.
XXX. THE OLD EAGLE TREE. (86)
1. In a distant field, stood a large tulip tree, apparently of a century's growth, and one of the most gigantic. It looked like the father of the surrounding forest. A single tree of huge dimensions, standing all alone, is a sublime object.
2. On the top of this tree, an old eagle, commonly called the "Fishing Eagle," had built her nest every year, for many years, and, undisturbed, had raised her young. A remarkable place to choose, as she procured her food from the ocean, and this tree stood full ten miles from the seashore. It had long been known as the "Old Eagle Tree."
3. On a warm, sunny day, the workmen were hoeing corn in an adjoining field. At a certain hour of the day, the old eagle was known to set off for the seaside, to gather food for her young. As she this day returned with a large fish in her claws, the workmen surrounded the tree, and, by yelling and hooting, and throwing stones, so scared the poor bird that she dropped her fish, and they carried it off in triumph.
4. The men soon dispersed, but Joseph sat down under a hush near by, to watch, and to bestow unavailing pity. The bird soon returned to her nest, without food. The eaglets at once set up a cry for food, so shrill, so clear, and so clamorous that the boy was greatly moved.
5. The parent bird seemed to try to soothe them; but their appetites were too keen, and it was all in vain. She then perched herself on a limb near them, and looked down into the nest in a manner that seemed to say, "I know not what to do next."
6. Her indecision was but momentary; again she poised herself, uttered one or two sharp notes, as if telling them to a "lie still," balanced her body, spread her wings, and was away again for the sea.
7. Joseph was determined to see the result. His eye followed her till she grew small, smaller, a mere speck in the sky, and then disappeared. What boy has not thus watched the flight of the bird of his country!
8. She was gone nearly two hours, about double her usual time for a voyage, when she again returned, on a slow, weary wing, flying uncommonly low, in order to have a heavier atmosphere to sustain her, with another fish in her talons.
9. On nearing the field, she made a circuit round it, to see if her enemies were again there. Finding the coast clear, she once more reached the tree, drooping, faint, and weary, and evidently nearly exhausted. Again the eaglets set up their cry, which was soon hushed by the distribution of a dinner, such as, save the cooking, a king might admire.
10. "Glorious bird!" cried the boy, "what a spirit!" Other birds can fly more swiftly, others can sing more sweetly, others scream more loudly; but what other bird, when persecuted and robbed, when weary, when discouraged, when so far from the sea, would do this?
11. "Glorious bird! I will learn a lesson from thee to-day. I will never forget, hereafter, that when the spirit is determined it can do almost anything. Others would have drooped, and hung the head, and mourned over the cruelty of man, and sighed over the wants of the nestlings; but thou, by at once recovering the loss, hast forgotten all."
12. "I will learn of thee, noble bird! I will remember this. I will set my mark high. I will try to do something, and to be something in the world; I will never yield to discouragements."
DEFINITIONS.—l. Cen'tu-ry, the space of a hundred years. Gi-gan'tic, very large. Di-men'sions, size. Sub-lime', grand, noble. 4. Dis-persed', scattered. Un-a-vail'ing, useless. Ea'glets, young eagles. Clam'or-ous, loud, noisy. 6. In-de-ci'sion, want of fixed purpose. Mo'men-ta-ry, for a single moment. 9. Cir'cuit, movement round in a circle. Ex-haust'ed, wholly tired. 11. Nes'-tlings, young birds in the nest.
EXERCISES.—Relate the story of the "Old Eagle Tree." What lesson was taught the boy who watched the eagle's actions?
XXXI. ALPINE SONG. (88) William W. Story, the author, was born in Salem, Mass.,
In 1819. His writings in poetry and prose are well known, and he also gained distinction in his profession as a sculptor. He died in 1895.
1. With alpenstock and knapsack light, I wander o'er hill and valley; I climb the snow peak's flashing height, And sleep in the sheltered chalet,— Free in heart—happy and free— This is the summer life for me.
2. The city's dust I leave behind For the keen, sweet air of the mountain, The grassy path by the wild rose lined, The gush of the living fountain,— Free in heart—happy and free— This is the summer life for me.
3. High above me snow clouds rise, In the early morning gleaming; And the patterned valley beneath me lies Softly in sunshine dreaming,— Free in heart—happy and free— This is the summer life for me.
4. The bells of wandering herds I list, Chiming in upland meadows; How sweet they sound, as I lie at rest Under the dark pine shadows— Glad in heart—happy and free— This is the summer life for me.
DEFINITIONS.—l. Al'pen-stock, a long staff, pointed with iron, used in traveling among the Alps. Knap'sack, a leather sack for carrying food or clothing, borne on the back. Cha-let' (pro. sha-la'), a mountain hut. 2. Gush, a rapid outflowing. 3. Pat'terned, marked off in figures or patterns. 4. List, hearken to.
XXXII. CIRCUMSTANCES ALTER CASES. (89)
1. Derby. Good morning, neighbor Scrapewell. I have half a dozen miles to ride to-day, and shall be extremely obliged if you will lend me your gray mare.
2. Scrapewell. It would give me great pleasure to oblige you, friend Derby; but I am under the necessity of going to the mill this very morning, with a bag of corn. My wife wants the meal to-day, and you know what a time there'll be if I disappoint her.
3. D. Then she must want it still, for I can assure you the mill does not go to-day. I heard the miller tell Will Davis that the water was too low.
4. S. You don't say so! That is bad, indeed; for in that case I shall be obliged to gallop off to town for the meal. My wife would comb my head for me if I should neglect it.
5. D. I can save you this journey, for I have plenty of meal at home, and will lend your wife as much as she wants.
6. S. Ah! neighbor Derby, I am sure your meal would never suit my wife. You can't conceive how whimsical she is.
7. D. If she were ten times more whimsical than she is, I am certain she would like it; for you sold it to me yourself, and you assured me it was the best you ever had.
8. S. Yes, yes! that's true, indeed; I always have the best of everything. You know, neighbor Derby, that no one is more ready to oblige a friend than I am; but I must tell you the mare this morning refused to eat hay; and, truly, I am afraid she will not carry you.
9. D. Oh, never fear! I will feed her well with oats on the road.
10. S. Oats! neighbor; oats are very dear.
11. D. Never mind that. When I have a good job in view, I never stand for trifles.
12. S. But it is very slippery; and I am really afraid she will fall and break your neck.
13. D. Give yourself no uneasiness about that. The mare is certainly sure-footed; and, besides, you were just now talking of galloping her to town.
14. S. Well, then, to tell you the plain truth, though I wish to oblige you with all my heart, my saddle is torn quite in pieces, and I have just sent my bridle to be mended.
15. D. Luckily, I have both a bridle and a saddle hanging up at home.
16. S. Ah! that may be; but I am sure your saddle will never fit my mare. She's very notional.
17. D. Why, then I'll borrow neighbor Clodpole's.
18. S. Clodpole's! his will no more fit than yours.
19. D. At the worst, then, I will go to my good friend, Squire Jones. He has half a score of them; and I am sure he will lend me one that will fit her.
20. S. You know, friend Derby, that no one is more willing to oblige his neighbors than I am. I do assure you the beast should be at your service, with all my heart; but she has not been curried, I believe, for three weeks past. Her foretop and mane want combing and cutting very much. If anyone should see her in her present plight, it would ruin the sale of her.
21. D. Oh, a horse is soon curried, and my son Sam shall attend to it at once.
22. S. Yes, very likely; but I this moment recollect the creature has no shoes on.
23. D. Well, is there not a blacksmith hard by?
24. S. What, that tinker, Dobson? I would not trust such a bungler to shoe a goat. No, no; none but uncle Tom Thumper shall shoe my mare.
25. D. As good luck will have it, then, I shall pass right by his door.
26. S. [Calling to his son.] Tim, Tim! here's neighbor Derby, who wants the loan of the gray mare, to ride to town to-day. You know the skin was rubbed off her back, last week, a hand's breadth or more. [Gives Tim a wink.] However, I believe she is well enough by this time. You know, Tim, how ready I am to oblige my neighbors; indeed, we ought to do all the good we can in this world. We must certainly let neighbor Derby have her if she will possibly answer his purpose. Yes, yes; I see plainly by Tim's countenance, neighbor Derby, that he's disposed to oblige you. I would not have refused you the mare for the worth of her. If I had, I should have expected you to refuse me in turn. None of my neighbors can accuse me of being backward in doing them a kindness whenever it is possible. Come, Tim, what do you say?
27. Tim. What do I say, father? Why, sir, I say that I am no less ready than you are to do a neighborly kindness. But the mare is by no means capable of performing the journey. About a hand's breadth, did you say? Why, sir, the skin is torn from the poor creature's back the bigness of your broad-brimmed hat! And, besides, I have promised her, so soon as she is able to travel, to Ned Saunders, to carry a load of apples to market.
28. S. Do you hear that, neighbor? I am very sorry matters are thus. I would not have disobliged you for the price of two such mares. Believe me, neighbor Derby, I am really sorry, for your sake, that matters turn out thus.
29. D. And I as much for yours, neighbor Scrapewell; for to tell you the truth I received a letter this morning from Mr. Griffin, who tells me if I will be in town to-day he will give me the refusal of all that lot of timber, which he is about cutting down, on the side of the hill; and I had intended you should have shared half of it, which would have been not less than fitly dollars in your pocket. But, as your—
30. S. Fifty dollars, did you say?
31. D. Ay, truly, did I; but as your mare is out of order, I'll go and see if I can get old Roan, the blacksmith's horse.
32. S. Old Roan! My mare is at your service, neighbor, Here, Tim, tell Ned Saunders he can't have the mare: neighbor Derby wants her; and I won't refuse so good a friend anything he asks for.
33. D. But what are you to do for meal?
34. S. My wife can do without it for a week if you want the mare so long.
35. D. But, then, your saddle is all in pieces.
36. S. I meant the old one. I have bought a new one since, and you shall have the first use of it.
37. D. And shall I call at Thumper's and get the mare shod?
38. S. No, no; I had forgotten to tell you that I let neighbor Dobson shoe her, last week, by way of trial; and, to do him justice, he shoes extremely well.
39. D. But, if the poor creature has lost so much skin from off her back—
40. S. Poh, poh! That is just one of Tim's large stories. I do assure you it was not, at first, bigger than my thumb nail, and I am certain it has not grown any since.
41. D. At least, however, let her have something she will eat, since she refuses hay.
42. S. She did, indeed, refuse hay this morning; but the only reason was that she was crammed full of oats. You have nothing to fear, neighbor; the mare is in perfect trim; and she will skim you over the ground like a bird. I wish you a good journey and a profitable job.
DEFINITIONS.—l. Ex-treme'ly, very much. 6. Whim'si-cal, full of whims. 20. Cur'ried, cleaned. Fore'top, hair on the forepart of the head. 24. Bun'gler, a clumsy workman. 26. Dis-posed', inclined to, Back'ward, slow, unwilling. 27. Ca'pa-ble, possessing ability. Per-form'ing, accomplishing. 29. Re-fus'al, choice of tak-ing. 42. Crammed, stuffed.
XXXIII. THE NOBLEST REVENGE. (94)
1. "I will have revenge on him, that I will, and make him heartily repent it," said Philip to himself, with a countenance quite red with anger. His mind was so engaged that he did not see Stephen, who happened at that instant to meet him.
2. "Who is that," said Stephen, "on whom you intend to be revenged?" Philip, as if awakened from a dream, stopped short, and looking at his friend, soon resumed a smile that was natural to his countenance. "Ah," said he, "you remember my bamboo, a very pretty cane which was given me by my father, do you not? Look! there it is in pieces. It was farmer Robinson's son who reduced it to this worthless state."
3. Stephen very coolly asked him what had induced young Robinson to break it. "I was walking peaceably along," replied he, "and was playing with my cane by twisting it round my body. By accident, one of the ends slipped out of my hand, when I was opposite the gate, just by the wooden bridge, where the ill natured fellow had put down a pitcher of water, which he was taking home from the well."
4. "It so happened that my cane, in springing back, upset the pitcher, but did not break it. He came up close to me, and began to call me names, when I assured him that what I had done had happened by accident, and that I was sorry for it. Without regarding what I said, he instantly seized my cane, and twisted it, as you see; but I will make him repent of it."
5. "To be sure," said Stephen, "he is a very wicked boy, and is already very properly punished for being such, since nobody likes him or will have anything to do with him. He can scarcely find a companion to play with him; and is often at a loss for amusement, as he deserves to be. This, properly considered, I think will appear sufficient revenge for you."
6. "All this is true," replied Philip, "but he has broken my cane. It was a present from my father, and a very pretty cane it was. I offered to fill his pitcher for him again, as I knocked it down by accident. I will be revenged."
7. "Now, Philip;" said Stephen, "I think you will act better in not minding him, as your contempt will be the best punishment you can inflict upon him. Be assured, he will always be able to do more mischief to you than you choose to do to him. And, now I think of it, I will tell you what happened to him not long since."
8. "Very unluckily for him, he chanced to see a bee hovering about a flower which he caught, and was going to pull off its wings out of sport, when the animal stung him, and flew away in safety to the hive. The pain put him into a furious passion, and, like you, he vowed revenge. He accordingly procured a stick, and thrust it into the beehive."
9. "In an instant the whole swarm flew out, and alighting upon him stung him in a hundred different places. He uttered the most piercing cries, and rolled upon the ground in the excess of his agony. His father immediately ran to him, but could not put the bees to flight until they had stung him so severely that he was confined several days to his bed."
l0. "Thus, you see, he was not very successful in his pursuit of revenge. I would advise you, therefore, to pass over his insult. He is a wicked boy, and much stronger than you; so that your ability to obtain this revenge may be doubtful."
11. "I must own," replied Philip, "that your advice seems very good. So come along with me, and I will tell my father the whole matter, and I think he will not be angry with me." They went, and Philip told his father what had happened. He thanked Stephen for the good advice he had given his son, and promised Philip to give him another cane exactly like the first.
12. A few days afterward, Philip saw this ill-natured boy fall as he was carrying home a heavy log of wood, which he could not lift up again. Philip ran to him, and helped him to replace it on his shoulder. Young Robinson was quite ashamed at the thought of this unmerited kindness, and heartily repented of his behavior. Philip went home quite satisfied. "This," said he, "is the noblest vengeance I could take, in returning good for evil. It is impossible I should repent of it."
DEFINITIONS.—l. Re-venge', return for an injury. Re-pent', to feel sorry for. Coun'te-nance, the face. 2. Re-sumed', took again. 3. In-duced', caused. 4. As-sured, declared positively. Re-gard'ing, noticing. 5. Con-sid'ered, thought of care'fully. 7. Con-tempt', disdain, scorn. In-flict', to impose, to put on. 8. Hov'er-ing, hanging over or about. 9. Ag'o-ny, very great pain. 10. A-bil'i-ty, power.
EXERCISES.—What is revenge? Is it right to take revenge on those who injure us? How should we treat such persons?
XXXIV. EVENING HYMN. (97)
1. Come to the sunset tree, The day is past and gone; The woodman's ax lies free, And the reaper's work is done; The twilight star to heaven, And the summer dew to flowers, And rest to us is given, By the soft evening hours.
2. Sweet is the hour of rest, Pleasant the woods' low sigh, And the gleaming of the west, And the turf whereon we lie, When the burden and the heat Of the laborer's task is o'er, And kindly voices greet The tired one at the door.
3. Yes, tuneful is the sound That dwells in whispering boughs: Welcome the freshness round, And the gale that fans our brows; But rest more sweet and still Than ever the nightfall gave, Our yearning hearts shall fill, In the world beyond the grave.
4. There, shall no tempests blow, Nor scorching noontide heat; There, shall be no more snow, No weary, wandering feet; So we lift our trusting eyes From the hills our fathers trod, To the quiet of the skies, To the Sabbath of our God.
XXXV. HOW MARGERY WONDERED. (99) By Lucy Larcom.
1. One bright morning late in March, little Margery put on her hood and her Highland plaid shawl, and went trudging across the beach. It was the first time she had been trusted out alone, for Margery was a little girl; nothing about her was large, except her round gray eyes, which had yet scarcely opened upon half a dozen springs and summers.
2. There was a pale mist on the far-off sea and sky, and up around the sun were white clouds edged with the hues of pinks and violets. The sunshine and the mild air made Margery's very heart feel warm, and she let the soft wind blow aside her Highland shawl, as she looked across the waters at the sun, and wondered! For, somehow, the sun had never looked before as it did to-day;—it seemed like a great golden flower bursting out of its pearl-lined calyx,—a flower without a stem. Or was there a strong stem away behind it in the sky, that reached down below the sea, to a root, nobody could guess where?
3. Margery did not stop to puzzle herself about the answer to her question, for now the tide, was coming in, and the waves, little at first, but growing larger every moment, were crowding up along the sand and pebbles, laughing, winking, and whispering, as they tumbled over each other, like thousands of children hurrying home from somewhere, each with its own precious little secret to tell.
4. Where did the waves come from? Who was down there under the blue wall of the horizon, with the hoarse, hollow voice, urging and pushing them across the beach at her feet? And what secret was it they were lisping to each other with their pleasant voices? Oh, what was there beneath the sea, and beyond the sea, so deep, so broad, and so dim, too, away off where the white ships, that looked smaller than sea birds, were gliding out and in?
5. But while Margery stood still for a moment on a dry rock, and wondered, there came a low, rippling warble to her ear from a cedar tree on the cliff above her. It had been a long winter, and Margery had forgotten that there were birds, and that birds could sing. So she wondered again what the music was.
6. And when she saw the bird perched on a yellow-brown bough, she wondered yet more. It was only a bluebird, but then it was the first bluebird Margery had ever seen. He fluttered among the prickly twigs, and looked as if he had grown out of them, as the cedar berries had, which were dusty blue, the color of his coat. But how did the music get in his throat? And after it was in his throat, how could it untangle itself, and wind itself off so evenly? And where had the bluebird flown from, across the snow banks down to the shore of the blue sea?
7. The waves sang a welcome to him, and he sang a welcome to the waves; they seemed to know each other well; and the ripple and the warble sounded so much alike, the bird and the wave must have both learned their music of the same teacher. And Margery kept on wondering as she stepped between the song of the bluebird and the echo of the sea, and climbed a sloping bank, just turning faintly green in the spring sunshine.
8. The grass was surely beginning to grow! There were fresh, juicy shoots running up among the withered blades of last year, as if in hopes of bringing them back to life; and closer down she saw the sharp points of new spears peeping from their sheaths. And scattered here and there were small, dark green leaves folded around buds shut up so tightly that only those who had watched them many seasons could tell what flowers were to be let out of their safe prisons by and by. So no one could blame Margery for not knowing that they were only common things, nor for stooping over the tiny buds, and wondering.
9. What made the grass come up so green out of the black earth? And how did the buds know when it was time to take off their little green hoods, and see what there was in the world around them? And how came they to be buds at all? Did they bloom in another world before they sprung up here?—and did they know, themselves, what kind of flowers they should blossom into? Had flowers souls, like little girls, that would live in another world when their forms had faded away in this?
10. Margery thought she would like to sit down on the bank, and wait beside the buds until they opened; perhaps they would tell her their secret if the very first thing they saw was her eyes watching them. One bud was beginning to unfold; it was streaked with yellow in little stripes that she could imagine became wider every minute. But she would not touch it, for it seemed almost as much alive as herself. She only wondered, and wondered!
11. Margery heard her mother calling her, and she trudged home across the shells and pebbles with a pleasant smile dimpling her cheeks; for she felt very much at home in this large, wonderful world, and was happy to be alive, although she neither could have told, nor cared to know, the reason why. But when her mother unpinned the little girl's Highland shawl, and took off her hood, she said, "O mother, do let me live on the doorstep! I don't like houses to stay in. What makes everything so pretty and so glad? Don't you like to wonder?"
12. Margery's mother was a good woman. But then there was all the housework to do, and, if she had thoughts, she did not often let them wander outside of the kitchen door. And just now she was baking some gingerbread, which was in danger of getting burned in the oven. So she pinned the shawl around the child's neck again, and left her on the doorstep, saying to herself, as she returned to her work, "Queer child! I wonder what kind of a woman she will be!"
13. But Margery sat on the doorstep, and wondered, as the sea sounded louder, and the sunshine grew warmer around her. It was all so strange, and grand, and beautiful! Her heart danced with joy to the music that went echoing through the wide world from the roots of the sprouting grass to the great golden blossom of the sun.
14. And when the round, gray eyes closed that night, at the first peep of the stars, the angels looked down and wondered over Margery. For the wisdom of the wisest being God has made, ends in wonder; and there is nothing on earth so wonderful as the budding soul of a little child.
DEFINITIONS.-l. Trudg'ing, walking sturdily. 2. Hues, colors. Ca'lyx, the outer covering of a flower. 4. Ho-ri'zon, the line where the sky and earth seem to meet. 5. War'ble, a trill of the voice. Spears, shoots of grass. Sheaths, coverings.
EXERCISES.—Name the things about which Margery wondered. What did she wonder about each? What is still more wonderful than all that at which Margery wondered?
XXXVI. THE CHILD'S WORLD. (103)
1. "Great, wide, beautiful, wonderful world, With the wonderful water round you curled, And the wonderful grass upon your breast,— World, you are beautifully drest."
2. "The wonderful air is over me, And the wonderful wind is shaking the tree; It walks on the water, and whirls the mills, And talks to itself on the tops of the hills."
3. "You friendly Earth! how far do you go With the wheat fields that nod, and the rivers that flow; With cities and gardens, and cliffs and isles, And people upon you for thousands of miles?"
4. "Ah, you are so great, and I am so small, I tremble to think of you, World, at all: And yet, when I said my prayers, to-day, A whisper inside me seemed to say, You are more than the Earth, though you are such a dot: You can love and think, and the Earth can not!'"
XXXVII. SUSIE'S COMPOSITION. (104)
1. Susie Smith came home from school one day, and had no sooner entered the sitting room than she burst into tears. "What is the matter, my dear child?" said her mother, drawing her daughter to her side and smiling.
2. "O mother, matter enough," sobbed Susie. "All our class must bring in compositions to-morrow morning, and I never, never can write one. We must write twelve lines at least, and I have written only a few words after trying nearly all the afternoon. See what work I have made of it!"
3. Mrs. Smith took the rumpled, tear-stained paper which Susie held in her hand, and glanced at what she had written. In a careful hand she had tried to write upon three themes: "Time," "Temperance," and "Industry."
4. "Time is short. We should all improve our time." "Temperance is a very useful thing." "We should all be industrious if we wish to do anything in the world." These sentences were all she had written.
5. "Now," said Susie, "I can't think of another word to say upon any of these subjects, and I know I shall have to go to school without a composition, for I won't be so mean as to copy one from a book, or to ask you or papa to write one for me."
6. "That is right, my dear," said her mother. "You will be far happier with a poor composition, if it is all your own, than with a fine one written by somebody else. But cheer up. You have not begun right—you have been trying to write upon subjects that you know nothing about. Run into the garden and play. I will call you in half an hour."
7. "But my composition," began Susie. "Don't think about your composition while you are gone," said Mrs. Smith, "but have as pleasant a time as you can."
8. It seemed but a few minutes to Susie before she heard her mother's voice calling her. She went into the house at once—her hands full of sweet flowers, and her cheeks rosy with exercise.
9. "Now, Susie," said her mother, "I want you to sit by the window with this nice sheet of paper and a pencil, and write something about what you can see." "But my composition, mother," said Susie; "when shall I begin that?" "Never mind your composition, my dear; do this to please me, and we will talk about that by and by."
10. Susie thought her mother's request was a strange one; but she knew that she always had a good reason for everything she did: so she took the paper and pencil, and sat by the window.
11. "Do not talk to me at all," said her mother. "Look out of the window, and then write down your thoughts about everything you see."
12. Susie could not help laughing, it seemed such a funny thing to be doing. As she looked out, she first saw the western sky and some bright, sunset clouds. "O mother!" she exclaimed, "what a splendid sunset!" "Don't talk," said her mother, "but write."
13. "I'll write about the sunset, then," said she, and the pencil began to move rapidly across the paper. In a few moments she said, "Mother, shall I read you what I have written?" "No, not now," answered her mother; "I am going into the dining room. You may sit and write until I return."
14. As Susie went on writing, she became very much interested in her occupation, and for a time forgot all about the dreaded composition. She wrote about the sunset clouds, the appearance of the distant hills, the trees, the river, the garden with its gay flowers, and the birds flying past the window.
15. Just as she had reached the bottom of the page, her mother came in. "Well, Susie," said she, with a smile, "how does that composition come on?" "Composition!" exclaimed Susie; "you told me not to think about my composition, and I have not thought of it once; I have had such a nice time writing about what I could see from the window."
16. Mrs. Smith took the paper and read aloud what Susie had written: "I am sitting on a low seat at the bay window, one half of which is open, so that I can smell the sweet flowers in the garden. The sky is all bright with sunset; I can see purple, and pink, and golden. I do not believe that anyone on earth has a paint box with such lovely colors in it."
17. "I can see one cloud, far above the rest, that looks like a ship sailing in the blue sea. I should like to sail on a cloud, if it would not make me dizzy. Now, while I have been writing, the clouds have changed in color and form, but they are just as beautiful as they were before."
18. "The green hills are tipped with light, and look as if they were wearing golden crowns. I can see a river a great way off, and it looks quite still, although I know it is running as fast as it can to get to the ocean."
19. "The birds are flying past the window to go home and take care of their little ones. I am glad the birds are not afraid to live in our garden, and to build nests in our trees."
20. "Our garden is full of flowers—pinks, lilies, and roses. Mother calls this the month of roses. My birthday will come in a week, and we can have all the flowers we wish for wreaths and bouquets."
21. "There, Susie," said Mrs. Smith, "that is a very nice composition, indeed." "A composition!" exclaimed Susie, "is that a composition?" "Yes, my dear, and a very good one, too," replied her mother. "When it hasn't even a subject?"
22. "We can find one for it, and I do not doubt it will please your teacher, as it does me. You see, my dear," continued her mother, "that it is easy enough to write if you have anything interesting to write about."
23. The next morning Susie copied her composition very neatly, and started to school with a happy heart, saying, as she gave her mother a kiss, "Just think how funny it is, dear mother, that I should have written so long a composition without knowing it."
DEFINITIONS.—Com-po-si'tion, that which is thought out and arranged, a written or literary work. 3. Rum'pled, wrinkled, creased. Themes, subjects or topics on which a person writes. 10. Re-quest', that which is asked. 14. Oc-cu-pa'tion, that which employs the time. 20. Bou-quets' (pro. boo-kas'), bunches of flowers.
EXERCISES.—What is a composition? Why was Susie so troubled? Why could she not write about "Time," "Temperance," or "Industry"? What did her mother have her do? What did Susie write? Was it a composition? Did she know, at the time, that it was? What fault did she find with it? Can you give her composition a proper subject?
XXXVIII. THE SUMMER SHOWER. (109)
The author, Thomas Buchanan Read, was born in Chester Co., Pa., March 12, 1822. His life was devoted to the fine arts, and he attained a high reputation both as artist and poet. He died in New York, May 11, 1872.
1. Before the stout harvesters falleth the grain, As when the strong stormwind is reaping the plain, And loiters the boy in the briery lane; But yonder aslant comes the silvery rain, Like a long line of spears brightly burnished and tall.
2. Adown the white highway like cavalry fleet, It dashes the dust with its numberless feet. Like a murmurless school, in their leafy retreat, The wild birds sit listening the drops round them beat; And the boy crouches close to the blackberry wall.
3. The swallows alone take the storm on the wing, And, taunting the tree-sheltered laborers, sing. Like pebbles the rain breaks the face of the spring, While a bubble darts up from each widening ring; And the boy in dismay hears the loud shower fall.
4. But soon are the harvesters tossing their sheaves; The robin darts out from his bower of leaves; The wren peereth forth from the moss-covered eaves; And the rain-spattered urchin now gladly perceives That the beautiful bow bendeth over them all.
DEFINITIONS.—l. A-slant', toward one side. 2. High'way, a public road. Re-treat', a place of refuge or safety, Crouch'es, stoops low. 3. Taunt'ing, deriding, mocking. 4. Ur'chin, a child.
XXXIX. CONSEQUENCES OF IDLENESS. (110)
1. Many young persons seem to think it of not much consequence if they do not improve their time well in youth, vainly expecting that they can make it up by diligence when they are older. They also think it is disgraceful for men and women to be idle, but that there can be no harm for persons who are young to spend their time in any manner they please.
2. George Jones thought so. When he was twelve years old, he went to an academy to prepare to enter college. His father was at great expense in obtaining books for him, clothing him, and paying his tuition. But George was idle. The preceptor of the academy would often tell him that if he did not study diligently when young he would never succeed well.
3. But George thought of nothing but present pleasure. He would often go to school without having made any preparation for his morning lesson; and, when called to recite with his class, he would stammer and make such blunders that the rest of the class could not help laughing at him. He was one of the poorest scholars in the school, because he was one of the most idle.
4. When recess came, and all the boys ran out of the academy upon the playground, idle George would come moping along. Instead of studying diligently while in school, he was indolent and half asleep. When the proper time for play came, he had no relish for it. I recollect very well, that, when "tossing up" for a game of ball, we used to choose everybody on the playground before we chose George; and if there were enough without him we used to leave him out. Thus he was unhappy in school and out of school.
5. There is nothing which makes a person enjoy play so well as to study hard. When recess was over, and the rest of the boys returned, fresh and vigorous, to their studies, George might be seen lagging and moping along to his seat. Sometimes he would be asleep in school; sometimes he would pass his time in catching flies, and penning them up in little holes, which he cut in his seat; and sometimes, when the preceptor's back was turned, he would throw a paper ball across the room.
6. When the class was called up to recite, George would come drowsily along, looking as mean and ashamed as though he were going to be whipped. The rest of the class stepped up to the recitation with alacrity, and appeared happy and contented. When it came George's turn to recite, he would be so long in doing it, and make such blunders, that all most heartily wished him out of the class.
7. At last, George went with his class to enter college. Though he passed a very poor examination, he was admitted with the rest; for those who examined him thought it was possible that the reason why he did not answer questions better was because he was frightened. Now came hard times for poor George. In college there is not much mercy shown to bad scholars; and George had neglected his studies so long that he could not now keep up with his class, let him try ever so hard.
8. He could, without much difficulty, get along in the academy, where there were only two or three boys of his own class to laugh at him. But now he had to go into a large recitation room, filled with students from all parts of the country. In the presence of all these, he must rise and recite to a professor. Poor fellow! He paid dearly for his idleness.
9. You would have pitied him if you could have seen him trembling in his scat, every moment expecting to be called upon to recite. And when he was called upon, he would stand up and take what the class called a "dead set;" that is, he could not recite at all. Sometimes he would make such ludicrous blunders that the whole class would burst into a laugh. Such are the applauses an idler gets. He was wretched, of course. He had been idle so long that he hardly knew how to apply his mind to study. All the good scholars avoided him; they were ashamed to be seen in his company. He became discouraged, and gradually grew dissipated.
10. The officers of the college were soon compelled to suspend him. He returned in a few months, but did no better; and his father was then advised to take him from college. He left college, despised by everyone. A few months ago, I met him, a poor wanderer, without money and without friends. Such are the wages of idleness. I hope every reader will, from this history, take warning, and "stamp improvement on the wings of time."
DEFINITIONS.—1. Con'se-quence, importance, influence. 2. A-cad'e-my, a school of high order. Col'lege, a seminary of learning of the highest order. Pre-cep'tor, a teacher. 3. Prep-a-ra'-tion, a making ready. 5. Vig'or-ous, full of activity and strength. 6. A-lac'ri-ty, cheerfulness, sprightliness. 8. Pro-fess'or, a teacher in a college. 9. Lu'di-crous, adapted to raise laughter. Ap—plaus'es, praises. Dis'-si-pa-ted, given up to bad habits. 10. Im-prove'ment, increase of knowledge.
XL. ADVANTAGES OF INDUSTRY. (113)
1. I gave you, in the last lesson, the history of George Jones, an idle boy, and showed you the consequences of his idleness. I shall now give you the history of Charles Bullard, a classmate of George. Charles was about the same age as George, and did not possess superior talents. Indeed, I doubt whether he was equal to him in natural powers of mind.
2. But Charles was a hard student. When quite young, he was always careful and diligent in school. Sometimes, when there was a very hard lesson, instead of going out to play during recess, he would stay in to study. He had resolved that his first object should be to get his lessons well, and then he could play with a good conscience. He loved play as well as anybody, and was one of the best players on the ground. I hardly ever saw any boy catch a ball better than he could. When playing any game, everyone was glad to get Charles on his side.
3. I have said that Charles would sometimes stay in at recess. This, however, was very seldom; it was only when the lessons were very hard indeed. Generally, he was among the first on the playground, and he was also among the first to go into school when called. Hard study gave him a relish for play, and play again gave him a relish for hard study; so he was happy both in school and out. The preceptor could not help liking him, for he always had his lessons well committed, and never gave him any trouble.
4. When he went to enter college, the preceptor gave him a good recommendation. He was able to answer all the questions which were put to him when he was examined. He had studied so well when he was in the academy, and was so thoroughly prepared for college, that he found it very easy to keep up with his class, and had much time for reading interesting books.
5. But he would always get his lesson well before he did anything else, and would review it just before recitation. When called upon to recite, he rose tranquil and happy, and very seldom made mistakes. The officers of the college had a high opinion of him, and he was respected by all the students.
6. There was, in the college, a society made up of all the best scholars. Charles was chosen a member of that society. It was the custom to choose some one of the society to deliver a public address every year. This honor was conferred on Charles; and he had studied so diligently, and read so much, that he delivered an address which was very interesting to all who heard it.
7. At last he graduated, as it is called; that is, he finished his collegiate course, and received his degree. It was known by all that he was a good scholar, and by all that he was respected. His father and mother, brothers and sisters, came on the commencement day to hear him speak.
8. They all felt gratified, and loved Charles more than ever. Many situations of usefulness and profit were opened to him; for Charles was now an intelligent man, and universally respected. He is still a useful and a happy man. He has a cheerful home, and is esteemed by all who know him.
9. Such are the rewards of industry. How strange it is that any person should be willing to live in idleness when it will certainly make him unhappy! The idle boy is almost invariably poor and miserable; the industrious boy is happy and prosperous.
10. But perhaps some child who reads this, asks, "Does God notice little children in school?" He certainly does. And if you are not diligent in the improvement of your time, it is one of the surest evidences that your heart is not right with God. You are placed in this world to improve your time. In youth you must be preparing for future usefulness. And if you do not improve the advantages you enjoy, you sin against your Maker.
With books, or work, or healthful play, Let your first years be passed; That you may give, for every day, Some good account, at last.
DEFINITIONS.—l. His'to-ry, a description or a narration of events. 2. Con'science, our own knowledge of right and wrong. Game, play, sport. 3. Com-mit'ted, fixed in mind. 4. Rec-om-men-da'tion, what is said in praise of anyone. 5. Re view', to examine again. Tran'quil, quiet, calm. 6. Con-ferred', given to or bestowed upon anyone. 7. Grad'u-a-ted, received a degree from a college. Com-mence'ment, the day when students receive their degree. 8. U-ni-ver'sal-ly, by all, without exception. 9. In-va'ri-a-bly, always, uniformly. 10. Ev'i-den-ces, proofs. Ad-van'ta-ges, opportunities for improvement.
EXERCISES.—What was the character of George Jones? Of Charles Bullard? How did George appear in the class at school? How did he behave at recess? How did Charles differ from him in these respects? Relate what happened when George went to college. What became of him? Did Charles succeed at college? Which of them do you think more worthy of imitation? What is said of the idle? What is said of the industrious? Who watches all our actions wherever we may be? For what are we placed in this world? Should you not then be diligent in your studies?
XLI. THE FOUNTAIN. (116)
By James Russell Lowell, one of the most noted of American poets; also well known as an essayist and lecturer. He was born at Cambridge, Mass., in 1819, and died there in 1891.
1. Into the sunshine, Full of the light, Leaping and flashing, From morn till night!
2. Into the moonlight, Whiter than snow, Waving so flower-like When the winds blow!
3. Into the starlight, Rushing in spray, Happy at midnight, Happy by day!
4. Ever in motion, Blithesome and cheery, Still climbing heavenward, Never aweary;
5. Glad of all weathers, Still seeming best, Upward or downward, Motion, thy rest;
6. Full of a nature Nothing can tame, Changed every moment, Ever the same;
7. Ceaseless aspiring, Ceaseless content, Darkness or sunshine Thy element;
8. Glorious fountain! Let my heart be Fresh, changeful, constant, Upward like thee!
DEFINITIONS.—4. Blithe'some, gay. Cheer'y, in good spirits. A-wea'ry, weary, tired. 7. As-pir'ing, ambitious. El'e-ment, the proper habitation or sphere of anything, suitable state. 8. Con'-stant, fixed, not to be changed.
XLII. COFFEE. (117)
1. The coffee tree is a native of eastern Africa, but it was in Arabia that it first became known to the people of Europe, and until about the year 1700 A. D. that country afforded the entire supply.
2. Then the coffee seeds found their way to Java, by means of some traders, and one of the first plants grown on that island was sent as a present to the governor of the Dutch East India Company, who lived in Holland.
3. It was planted in the Botanical Gardens at Amsterdam, and in a few years seeds taken from it were sent to South America, where the cultivation of coffee has steadily increased, extending to the West Indies, until now the offspring of this one plant produce more coffee than is obtained from all the other plants in the world.
4. The plant is an evergreen, and is from six to twelve feet high, the stem being from ten to fifteen inches in diameter. The lower branches bend down when the tree begins to grow old, and extend themselves into a round form somewhat like an umbrella; and the wood is so pliable that the ends of the largest branches may be bent down to within two or three feet of the earth.
5. The bark is whitish and somewhat rough. A tree is never without leaves, which are at small distances from one another, and on almost opposite sides of a bough. Blossoms and green and ripe fruit may be seen on the same tree at the same time. When the blossom falls off, there grows in its place a small green fruit, which becomes dark red as it ripens.
6. This fruit is not unlike a cherry, and is very good to eat. Under the pulp of this cherry is found the bean or berry we call coffee, wrapped in a fine, thin skin. The berry is at first very soft, and has a bad taste; but as the cherry ripens the berry grows harder, and the dried-up fruit becomes a shell or pod of a deep brown color.
7. The berry is now solid, and its color is a translucent green. Each shell contains two seeds, rounded on one side and flat on the other. The seeds lie with the flat sides together, and, in one highly prized variety, the two seeds grow together, forming one: this is known as the pea berry. When the fruit is so ripe that it can be shaken from the tree, the husks are separated from the berries, and are used, in Arabia, by the natives, while the berries are sold.
8. The young plants are inserted in holes from twelve to eighteen inches deep, and six or eight feet apart. If left to themselves, they would grow to the height of eighteen or twenty feet; but they are usually dwarfed by pruning, so that the fruit may be easily got at by the gatherer.
9. Thus dwarfed, they extend their branches until they cover the whole space about them. They begin to yield fruit the third year. By the sixth or seventh year they are at full bearing, and continue to bear for twenty years or more.
l0. Before the berry can be used, it undergoes a process of roasting. The amount of aromatic oil brought out in roasting has much to do with the market value of coffee, and it has been found that the longer the raw coffee is kept, the richer it becomes in this peculiar oil, and so the more valuable. But after the coffee is roasted, and especially after it is ground, it loses its aroma rapidly.
11. Arabia produces the celebrated Mocha, or "Mokha," coffee, which is the finest in the world; but little or none of the best product is ever taken out of that country. The Java coffee from the East Indies is next prized, but the best quality of this kind is also quite difficult to obtain, and many, therefore, prefer the finest grades of Rio coffee from South America to such Mocha and Java as can be had in our country.
DEFINITIONS.—l. Af-ford'ed, yielded, produced. 3. Off'spring, descendants, however remote, from, the stock. 4. Pli'a-ble, easily bent. 7. Trans-lu'cent, permitting the passage of light. 8. Prun'-ing, trimming. 10. Ar-o-mat'ic, containing aroma, fragrant.
EXERCISES.—What country first supplied coffee? How did the plant come to be grown in other countries? Describe the plant. What is said of the fruit? How are the plants cultivated? What is said about the roasting of coffee? What are the three principal kinds of coffee used, and how are they valued?
XLIII. THE WINTER KING. (120)
1. Oh! what will become of thee, poor little bird? The muttering storm in the distance is heard; The rough winds are waking, the clouds growing black, They'll soon scatter snowflakes all over thy back! From what sunny clime hast thou wandered away? And what art thou doing this cold winter day?
2. "I'm picking the gum from the old peach tree; The storm doesn't trouble me. Pee, dee, dee!"
3. But what makes thee seem so unconscious of care? The brown earth is frozen, the branches are bare: And how canst thou be so light-hearted and free, As if danger and suffering thou never should'st see, When no place is near for thy evening nest, No leaf for thy screen, for thy bosom no rest?
4. "Because the same Hand is a shelter for me, That took off the summer leaves. Pee, dee, dee!"
5. But man feels a burden of care and of grief, While plucking the cluster and binding the sheaf: In the summer we faint, in the winter we're chilled, With ever a void that is yet to be filled. We take from the ocean, the earth, and the air, Yet all their rich gifts do not silence our care.
6. "A very small portion sufficient will be, If sweetened with gratitude. Pee, dee, dee!"
7. But soon there'll be ice weighing down the light bough, On which thou art flitting so playfully now; And though there's a vesture well fitted and warm, Protecting the rest of thy delicate form, What, then, wilt thou do with thy little bare feet, To save them from pain, mid the frost and the sleet?
8. "I can draw them right up in my feathers, you see, To warm them, and fly away. Pee, dee, dee!"
9. I thank thee, bright monitor; what thou hast taught Will oft be the theme of the happiest thought; We look at the clouds; while the birds have an eye To Him who reigns over them, changeless and high. And now little hero, just tell me thy name, That I may be sure whence my oracle came.
10. "Because, in all weather, I'm merry and free, They call me the Winter King. Pee, dee, dee!"
DEFINITIONS.—l. Mut'ter-ing, murmuring, rumbling. 3. Un-con'scious, not knowing, not perceiving. 5. Clus'ter, a bunch. 7. Flit'ing, moving about in a lively manner. Ves'ture, clothing, covering. 9. Mon'i-tor, one who warns of faults. Or'a-cle, a wise sentence or decision.
XLIV. THE NETTLE. (121)
1. Anna. O papa! I have stung my hand with that nettle.
2. Father. Well, my dear, I am sorry for it; but pull up that large dock leaf you see near it; now bruise the juice out of it on the part which is stung. Well, is the pain lessened?
3. A. Oh, very much indeed, I hardly feel it now. But I wish there was not a nettle in the world. I am sure I do not know what use there can be in them.
4. F. If you knew anything of botany, Nanny, you would not say so.
5. A. What is botany, papa?
6. F. Botany, my dear, is the knowledge of plants.
7. A. Some plants are very beautiful. If the lily were growing in our fields, I should not complain. But this ugly nettle! I do not know what beauty or use there can be in that.
8. F. And yet, Nanny, there is more beauty, use, and instruction in a nettle, than even in a lily.
9. A. O papa, how can you make that out?
10. F. Put on your gloves, pluck up that nettle, and let us examine it. First, look at the flower.
11. A. The flower, papa? I see no flower, unless those little ragged knobs are flowers, which have neither color nor smell, and are not much larger than the heads of pins.
12. F. Here, take this magnifying glass and examine them.
13. A. Oh, I see now; every little knob is folded up in leaves, like a rosebud. Perhaps there is a flower inside.
14. F. Try; take this pin and touch the knob. Well, what do you see?
15. A. Oh, how curious!
16. F. What is curious?
17. A. The moment I touched it, it flew open. A little cloud rose out like enchantment, and four beautiful little stems sprung up as if they were alive; and, now that I look again with the glass, I see an elegant little flower as nice and perfect as a lily itself.
18. F. Well, now examine the leaves.
19. A. Oh, I see they are all covered over with little bristles; and when I examine them with the glass, I see a little bag, filled with a juice like water, at the bottom of each. Ha! these are the things which stung me.
20. F. Now touch the little bag with the point of the pin.
21. A. When I press the bag, the juice runs up and comes out at the small point at the top; so I suppose the little thorn must be hollow inside, though it is finer than the point of my cambric needle.
22. F. Have all the leaves those stings?
23. A. No, papa; some of the young ones are quite green and soft, like velvet, and I may handle them without any danger.
24. F. Now look at the stem, and break it.
25. A. I can easily crack it, but I can not break it asunder, for the bark is so strong that it holds it together.
26. F. Well, now you see there are more curious things in the nettle than you expected.
27. A. Yes, indeed, I see that. But you have often told me that God makes nothing without its use; and I am sure I can not see any use in all these things.
28. F. That we will now consider. You saw the little flower burst open, and a cloud rose, you say, like enchantment. Now all this is necessary for the nature of the plant. There are many thousand plants in the world, and it has pleased God, in his wisdom, to make them all different. Now look at this other nettle, which grew on the opposite side of the road; you see that it is not exactly like the one you have just examined.
29. A. No, papa; this has little flat seeds instead of flowers.
30. F. Very right, my dear. Now, in order to make those seeds grow, it is necessary that the little flower of this plant and the seed of that should be together, as they are in most others. But plants can not walk, like animals. The wisdom of God, therefore, has provided a remedy for this. When the little flower bursts open it throws out a fine powder, which you saw rise like a cloud; this is conveyed by the air to the other plant, and when it falls upon the seed of that plant it gives it power to grow, and makes it a perfect seed, which, in its turn, when it falls to the ground, will produce a new plant. Were it not for this fine powder, that seed would never be perfect or complete.
31. A. That is very curious, indeed; and I see the use of the little cloud and the flower; but the leaf that stung me, of what use can that be? There, dear papa, I am afraid I puzzle you to tell me that.
32. P. Even these stings are made useful to man. The poor people in some countries use them instead of blisters, when they are sick. Those leaves which do not sting are used by some for food, and from the stalk others get a stringy bark, which answers the purpose of flax. Thus you see that even the despised nettle is not made in vain; and this lesson may serve to teach you that we only need to understand the works of God to see that "in goodness and wisdom he has made them all."
DEFINITIONS.—12. Mag'ni-fy-ing glass, an instrument used to make objects appear larger. 17. En-chant'ment, magic art, witch-craft. 5. A-sun'der, apart, into parts. 30. Rem'e-dy, that which removes an evil. Con-veyed', carried. 32. String'y, full of strings.
XLV. THE TEMPEST. (125)
By James T. Fields (born 1817, died 1881), who was born at Portsmouth, N. H. He was a poet, and the author, also, of some well known prose works. Of these, his "Yesterdays with Authors" is the most noted.
1. We were crowded in the cabin; Not a soul would dare to sleep: It was midnight on the waters, And a storm was on the deep.
2. 'T is a fearful thing in winter To be shattered by the blast, And to hear the rattling trumpet Thunder, "Cut away the mast!"
3. So we shuddered there in silence, For the stoutest held his breath, While the hungry sea was roaring, And the breakers threatened death.
4. And as thus we sat in darkness, Each one busy in his prayers, "We are lost!" the captain shouted, As he staggered down the stairs.
5. But his little daughter whispered, As she took his icy hand, "Is n't God upon the ocean, Just the same as on the land?"
6. Then we kissed the little maiden, And we spoke in better cheer; And we anchored safe in harbor When the morn was shining clear.
DEFINITIONS.—l. Deep, the ocean. 2. Blast, tempest. 3. Break'ers, waves of the sea broken by rocks. 6. Cheer, state of mind.
XLVI. THE CREATOR. (126)
The poetry at the close of this selection is by John Keble, a celebrated English clergyman, born in 1792. He held for some years the professorship of Poetry at Oxford University. He died in 1866.
1. Come, and I will show you what is beautiful. It is a rose fully blown. See how she sits upon her mossy stem, the queen of flowers. Her leaves glow like fire. The air is filled with her sweet odor. She is the delight of every eye.
2. But there is one fairer than the rose. He that made the rose is more beautiful than the rose. He is altogether lovely. He is the delight of every heart.
3. I will show you what is strong. The lion is strong. When he raiseth himself up from his lair, when he shaketh his mane, when the voice of his roaring is heard, the cattle of the field fly, and the wild beasts of the desert hide themselves; for he is terrible.
4. But He who made the lion is stronger than the lion. He can do all things. He gave us life, and in a moment can take it away, and no one can save us from his hand.
5. I will show you what is glorious. The sun is glorious. When he shineth in the clear sky, when he sitteth on his throne in the heavens, and looketh abroad over the earth, he is the most glorious and excellent object the eye can behold.
6. But He who made the sun is more glorious than the sun. The eye cannot look on his dazzling brightness. He seeth all dark places, by night as well as by day. The light of his countenance is over all the world.
7. This great Being is God. He made all things, but He is more excellent than all that He has made. He is the Creator, they are the creatures. They may be beautiful, but He is Beauty. They may be strong, but He is Strength. They may be perfect, but He is Perfection.
8. There is a book, who runs may read, Which heavenly truth imparts, And all the lore its scholars need— Pure eyes and loving hearts.
9. The works of God, above, below, Within us, and around, Are pages in that book, to show How God himself is found.
10. The glorious sky, embracing all, Is like the Father's love; Wherewith encompassed, great and small In peace and order move.
11. Thou who hast given me eyes to see And love this sight so fair, Give me a heart to find out Thee And read Thee everywhere.
DEFINITIONS.—1. Blown, blossomed, bloomed. O'dor, smell, scent. 3. Lair, bed of a wild beast. Des'ert, a wilderness, a place where no one lives. 5. Ex'cel-lent, surpassing others in worth, su-perior. 6. Daz'zling, overpowering with light. 7. Per-fec'tion, the state of being perfect, so that nothing is wanting. 8. Im-parts', makes known. Lore, learning. 10. En-com'passed, surrounded.
EXERCISES.—What is described as beautiful? As strong? As glorious? Who is more beautiful than the rose, stronger than the lion, and more glorious than the sun? What is the book which we may all read? What should it teach us?
XLVII. THE HORSE. (128)
1. Uncle Thomas. Well, boys, I am glad to see you again. Since I last saw you I have made quite a tour, and at some future time will describe to you what I have seen. I promised at this meeting, however, to tell you something about animals, and I propose to begin with the horse. But I know that you like stories better than lecturing, so I will proceed at once to tell you some which I have gathered for you.
2. Frank. We never feel tired of listening to you, Uncle Thomas. We know you always have something curious to tell us.
3. Uncle Thomas. Well then, Frank, to begin at once with the horse.
4. In several parts of the world there are to be found large herds of wild horses. In South America the immense plains are inhabited by them, and it is said that ten thousand are sometimes found in a single herd. These herds are always preceded by a leader, who directs their motions; and such is the regularity with which they perform their movements, that it seems as if they could hardly be surpassed by the best trained cavalry.
5. It is extremely dangerous for travelers to meet a herd of this description. When they are unaccustomed to the sight of such a mass of creatures, they can not help feeling greatly alarmed at their rapid and apparently irresistible approach. The trampling of the animals sounds like distant thunder; and such is the rapidity and impetuosity of their advance, that it seems to threaten instant destruction.
6. Sometimes, however, they suddenly stop short, utter a loud and piercing neigh, and, with a rapid wheel, take an opposite course, and altogether disappear. On such occasions it requires great care in the traveler to prevent his horses from breaking loose and escaping with the wild herd.
7. In those countries where wild horses are so plentiful, the inhabitants do not take the trouble to raise others, but whenever they want one they mount upon an animal accustomed to the sport, and gallop over the plain toward a herd, which is readily found at no great distance.
8. The rider gradually approaches some stragglers from the main body, and, having selected the one he wishes, he dexterously throws the lasso (which is a long rope with a running noose, and is firmly fixed to his saddle) either over the wild horse's head or in such a manner as to entangle his hind legs; and by the sudden checking of his own horse, he throws the captured animal over on its side.
9. In an instant he jumps off his horse, wraps his cloak round the head of the captive, forces a bit into his mouth, and straps a saddle on his back. He then removes the cloak, and the animal starts to his feet. With equal quickness the hunter leaps into his saddle; and, in spite of the kicking of the captive, keeps his seat, till, being wearied out with his efforts, the horse submits to the guidance of his new master, and is reduced to complete obedience.
10. Frank. But, Uncle Thomas, are all horses originally wild? I have heard that Arabia is famous for raising horses.
11. Uncle Thomas. Arabia has, for a long time, been noted for the beauty and speed of its horses. It is not strange, however, that the Arabian horse should be the most excellent, when we consider the care and kindness with which it is treated. One of the best stories which I have ever heard of the love of an Arabian for his steed, is that related of an Arab, from whom an English officer wished to purchase his horse.
12. The animal was a bright bay mare, of fine form and great beauty; and the owner, proud of her appearance and qualities, paraded her before the Englishman's tent until she attracted his attention. On being asked if he would sell her, "What will you give me?" was the reply. "That depends upon her age. I suppose she is past five?" "Guess again," said he. "Four?" "Look at her mouth," said the Arab, with a smile. On examination she was found to be about three. This, from her size and symmetry, greatly increased her value.
13. The gentleman said, "I will give you eighty tomans," (nearly two hundred and fifty dollars). "A little more, if you please," said the fellow, somewhat entertained. "Ninety—a hundred." He shook his head and smiled. The officer at last came to three hundred tomans, (nearly one thousand dollars). "Well," said the Arab, "you need not tempt me further. You are a rich nobleman, and, I am told, have loads of silver and gold. Now," added he, "you want my mare, but you shall not have her for all you have got." He put spurs to his horse, and was soon out of the reach of temptation.
14. The horse can swim, when necessary, as well as most other animals, although he is not very fond of the water. Some years ago a vessel was driven upon the rocks, on the coast of the Cape of Good Hope, and most of the crew fell an immediate sacrifice to the waves. Those who were left were seen from the shore, clinging to the different pieces of the wreck. The sea ran so high that no boat could venture off to their assistance.
15. Meanwhile, a planter had come from his farm to be a spectator of the shipwreck. His heart was melted at the sight of the unhappy seamen, and, knowing the bold spirit of his horse and his excellence as a swimmer, he determined to make a desperate effort for their deliverance. Having blown a little Brandy into his horse's nostrils, he pushed into the midst of the breakers. At first both horse and rider disappeared, but it was not long before they floated to the surface, and swam up to the wreck; when, taking two men with him, each of whom held on by one of his boots, the planter brought them safe to shore.
16. This was repeated no less than seven times, and he saved fourteen lives; but on his return the eighth time, being much fatigued, and meeting a tremendous wave, he lost his balance and sank in a moment. His horse swam safely to land, but its gallant rider sank, to rise no more.
DEFINITIONS.—4. Im-mense', very large. In-hab'it-ed, occupied as a home. Cav'al-ry, a body of military troops on horses. 5. Im—pet-u-os'i-ty, fury, violence. 8. Dex'ter-ous-ly, skillfully. 9. Re—duced', brought into. 10. O-rig'i-nal-ly, at first. 12. Pa-rad'ed, showed off. 8. Sym'me-try, a proper proportion of the several parts. 13. To-man', a Persian coin valued at about three dollars. 15. Des'per-ate, without care of safety. De-liv'er-ance, release from danger. 16. Gal'lant, brave, heroic.
EXERCISES.—Where are wild horses found? How are they taken? For what purpose are they taken? In what country are the finest horses raised? Why are the horses so excellent there? Are not animals always made better by kind treatment? Why would not the Arab sell his horse? Relate the anecdote of the planter and the shipwrecked seamen.
XLVIII. EMULATION. (132)
1. Frank's father was speaking to a friend, one day, on the subject of competition at school. He said that he could answer for it that envy is not always connected with it.
2. He had been excelled by many, but did not recollect ever having felt envious of his successful rivals; "nor did my winning many a prize from my friend Birch," said he, "ever lessen his friendship for me."
3. In support of the truth of this, a friend who was present related an anecdote which had fallen under his own notice in a school in his neighborhood.
4. At this school the sons of several wealthy farmers, and others, who were poorer, received instruction. Frank listened with great attention while the gentleman gave the following account of the two rivals:
5. It happened that the son of a rich farmer and the son of a poor widow came in competition for the head of their class. They were so nearly equal that the teacher could scarcely decide between them; some days one, and some days the other, gained the head of the class. It was determined by seeing who should be at the head of the class for the greater number of days in the week.
6. The widow's son, by the last day's trial, gained the victory, and kept his place the following week, till the school was dismissed for the holidays.
7. When they met again the widow's son did not appear, and the farmer's son, being next to him, might now have been at the head of his class. Instead of seizing the vacant place, however, he went to the widow's house to inquire what could be the cause of her son's absence.
8. Poverty was the cause; the poor woman found that she was not able, with her utmost efforts, to continue to pay for the tuition and books of her son, and so he, poor fellow! had been compelled to give up his schooling, and to return to labor for her support.
9. The farmer's son, out of the allowance of pocket money which his father gave him, bought all the necessary books and paid for the tuition of his rival. He also permitted him to be brought back again to the head of his class, where he continued for some time, at the expense of his generous rival.
DEFINITIONS.—Em-u-la'tion, rivalry, contest. 1. Com-pe-ti'tion, rivalry. 2. Ex-celled', surpassed, exceeded in good qualities. Ri'vals, those who pursue the same thing. 3. An'ec-dote, a short story. 8. Tu-i'tion, payment for teaching.
EXERCISES.—What is the subject of this lesson? What do you mean by emulation? What is envy? What story is told about the two rivals? Is it right to envy any person?
XLIX. THE SANDPIPER. (134) By CELIA THAXTER.
1. Across the lonely beach we flit, One little sandpiper and I, And fast I gather, bit by bit, The scattered driftwood, bleached and dry. The wild waves reach their hands for it, The wild wind raves, the tide runs high, As up and down the beach we flit, One little sandpiper and I.
2. Above our heads the sullen clouds Scud, black and swift, across the sky; Like silent ghosts in misty shrouds Stand out the white lighthouses high. Almost as far as eye can reach I see the close-reefed vessels fly, As fast we flit across the beach, One little sandpiper and I.
3. I watch him as he skims along, Uttering his sweet and mournful cry; He starts not at my fitful song, Nor flash of fluttering drapery. He has no thought of any wrong, He scans me with a fearless eye; Stanch friends are we, well-tried and strong, The little sandpiper and I.
4. Comrade, where wilt thou be to-night, When the loosed storm breaks furiously? My driftwood fire will burn so bright! To what warm shelter canst thou fly? I do not fear for thee, though wroth The tempest rushes through the sky; For are we not God's children both, Thou, little sandpiper, and I?
DEFINITIONS.—l. Sand'pi-per, a bird of the snipe family, found along the seacoast. Drift'wood. wood tossed on shore by the waves. Bleached, whitened. Tide, the regular rise and fall of the ocean which occurs twice in a little over twenty-four hours. 2. Scud, fly hastily. Shrouds, Winding sheets, dresses of the dead. Close'reefed, with sails contracted as much as possible. 3. Fit'ful, irregularly variable. Draper-y, garments. Scans, looks at care-fully. Stanch, firm. 4. Wroth, angry.
L. THE RIGHT WAY. (136)
Adapted from a story by Frank H. Stockton. He was born at Philadelphia, April 5, 1834, and when quite a young boy used to write stories for his own pleasure. He was once a designer and engraver on wood, and afterwards an editor; but he now devotes himself entirely to writing, not only for young but also for grown people.
1. "O Andy!" said little Jenny Murdock, "I'm so glad you came along this way. I can't get over."
2. "Can't get over?" said Andrew. "Why what's the matter?"
3. "The bridge is gone," said Jenny. "When I came across after breakfast it was there, and now it's over on the other side, and how can I get back home?"
4. "Why, so it is," said Andrew. "It was all right when I came over a little while ago, but old Donald pulls it on the other side every morning after he has driven his cows across, and I don't think he has any right to do it. I suppose he thinks the bridge was made for him and his cows."
5. "Now I must go down to the big bridge, Andy, and I want you to go with me. I'm afraid to go through all those dark woods by myself," said Jenny.
6. "But I can't go, Jenny," said Andrew, "it's nearly school time now."
7. Andrew was a Scotch boy, and a fine fellow. He was next to the head of his school, and he was as good at play as he was at his book.
8. Jenny Murdock, his most particular friend, was a little girl who lived very near Andrew's home. She had no brothers or sisters, but Andrew had always been as good as a brother to her; and, therefore, when she stood by the water's edge that morning, just ready to burst into tears, she thought all her troubles over when she saw Andrew coming along the road.
9. He had always helped her out of her troubles before, and she saw no reason why he should not do it now. She had crossed the creek in search of wild flowers, and when she wished to return had found the bridge removed, as Andrew supposed, by old Donald McKensie, who pastured his cows on this side of the creek.
10. This stream was not very wide, nor very deep at its edges, but the center it was four or five feet deep; and in the spring the water ran very swiftly, so that wading across it, either by cattle or men, was quite a difficult undertaking. As for Jenny, she could not get across at all without a bridge, and there was none nearer than the wagon bridge, a mile and a half below.
11. "You will go with me, Andy, won't you?" said the little girl.
12. "And be late to school?" said he. "I have not been late yet, you know, Jenny."
13. "Perhaps Dominie Black will think you have been sick or had to mind the cows," said Jenny.
14. "He won't think so unless I tell him," said Andrew, "and you know I won't do that."
15. "If we were to run all the way, would you be too late?" said Jenny.
16. "If we were to run all the way to the bridge, and I were to run all the way back, I should not get to school till after copy time. I expect every minute to hear the school bell ring," said Andrew.
17. "But what can I do, then?" said poor little Jenny. "I can't wait here till school's out, and I don't want to go up to the schoolhouse, for all the boys to laugh at me."
18. "No," said Andrew, reflecting very seriously, "I must take you home some way or other. It won't do to leave you here, and, no matter where you might stay, your mother would be very much troubled about you."
19. "Yes," said Jenny, "she would think I was drowned."
20. Time pressed, and Jenny's countenance became more and more overcast, but Andrew could think of no way in which he could take the little girl home without being late and losing his standing in the school.
21. It was impossible to get her across the stream at any place nearer than the "big bridge;" he would not take her that way, and make up a false story to account for his lateness at school, and he could not leave her alone or take her with him.
22. What was to be done? While several absurd and impracticable plans were passing through his brain, the school bell began to ring, and he must start immediately to reach the schoolhouse in time.
23. And now his anxiety and perplexity became more intense than ever; and Jenny, looking up into his troubled countenance, began to cry.
24. Andrew, who had never before failed to be at the school door before the first tap of the bell, began to despair. Was there nothing to be done?
25. Yes! a happy thought passed through his mind. How strange that he should not have thought of it before! He would ask Dominie Black to let him take Jenny home. What could be more sensible and straightforward than such a plan?
26. Of course, the good old schoolmaster gave Andrew the desired permission, and everything ended happily. But the best thing about the whole affair was the lesson that the young Scotch boy learned that day.
27. The lesson was this: when we are puzzling our brains with plans to help ourselves out of trouble, let us always stop a moment in our planning, and try to think if there is not some simple way out of the difficulty, which shall be in every respect perfectly right. If we do this, we shall probably find a way more easy and satisfactory than any which we can devise.
DEFINITIONS.—8. Par-tic'u-lar, not ordinary, worthy of partic-ular attention, chief. 13. Dom'i-nie, the Scotch name for school-master. 18. Re-flect'ing, thinking earnestly. 20 Over-cast', cov-ered with gloom. 21. Ac-count', to state the reasons. 22. Im—prac'ti-ca-ble, not possible. 23. Anx-i'e-ty, care, trouble of mind. 27. De-vise', plan, contrive.
EXERCISES.—Why could not Jenny cross the stream? Whom did she ask to help her? What can you tell about Andrew? Who was Jenny Murdock? What did Jenny wish Andrew to do? Why could he not go with her? Would it have been right for Andrew to have told an untruth even to help Jenny out of trouble? What did he finally do? What does this lesson teach us to do in case of trouble?
LI. THE GOLDEN RULE. (139)
1. To act with integrity and good faith was such a habit with Susan that she had never before thought of examining the Golden Rule: "All things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them." But the longer she reflected upon it, the stronger was her conviction that she did not always obey the precept; at length, she appealed to her mother for its meaning.
2. "It implies," said her mother, "in the first place, a total destruction of all selfishness: for a man who loves himself better than his neighbors, can never do to others as he would have others do to him. We are bound not only to do, but to feel, toward others as we would have others feel toward us. Remember, it is much easier to reprove the sin of others than to overcome temptation when it assails ourselves.
3. "A man may be perfectly honest and yet very selfish; but the command implies something more than mere honesty; it requires charity as well as integrity. The meaning of the command is fully explained in the parable of the Good Samaritan. The Levite, who passed by the wounded man without offering him assistance, may have been a man of great honesty; but he did not do unto the poor stranger as he would have wished others to do unto him."
4. Susan pondered carefully and seriously on what her mother had said. When she thought over her past conduct, a blush of shame crept to her cheeks, and a look of sorrow into her eyes, as many little acts of selfishness and unkindness came back to her memory. She resolved that for the future, both in great things and small, she would remember and follow the Golden Rule.
5. It was not long after this that an opportunity occurred of trying Susan's principles. One Saturday evening when she went, as usual, to farmer Thompson's inn, to receive the price of her mother's washing for the boarders, which amounted to five dollars, she found the farmer in the stable yard.
6. He was apparently in a terrible rage with some horse dealers with whom he had been bargaining. He held in his hand an open pocketbook, full of bills; and scarcely noticing the child as she made her request, except to swear at her, as usual, for troubling him when he was busy, he handed her a bank note.
7. Glad to escape so easily, Susan hurried out of the gate, and then, pausing to pin the money safely in the folds of her shawl, she discovered that he had given her two bills instead of one. She looked around; nobody was near to share her discovery; and her first impulse was joy at the unexpected prize.
8. "It is mine, all mine," said she to herself; "I will buy mother a new cloak with it, and she can give her old one to sister Mary, and then Mary can go to the Sunday school with me next winter. I wonder if it will not buy a pair of shoes for brother Tom, too."
9. At that moment she remembered that he must have given it to her by mistake; and therefore she had no right to it. But again the voice of the tempter whispered, "He gave it, and how do you know that he did not intend to make you a present of it? Keep it; he will never know it, even if it should be a mistake; for he had too many such bills in that great pocketbook to miss one."
10. While this conflict was going on in her mind between good and evil, she was hurrying homeward as fast as possible. Yet, before she came in sight of her home, she had repeatedly balanced the comforts which the money would buy against the sin of wronging her neighbor.
11. As she crossed the little bridge over the narrow creek before her mother's door, her eye fell upon a rustic seat which they had occupied during the conversation I have before narrated. Instantly the words of Scripture, "Whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them," sounded in her ears like a trumpet.
12. Turning suddenly round, as if flying from some unseen peril, the child hastened along the road with breathless speed until she found herself once more at farmer Thompson's gate. "What do you want now?" asked the gruff old fellow, as he saw her again at his side.
13. "Sir, you paid me two bills, instead of one," said she, trembling in every limb. "Two bills? did I? let me see; well, so I did; but did you just find it out? Why did you not bring it back sooner?" Susan blushed and hung her head.
14. "You wanted to keep it, I suppose," said he. "Well, I am glad your mother was more honest than you, or I should have been five dollars poorer and none the wiser." "My mother knows nothing about it, sir," said Susan; "I brought it back before I went home."
15. The old man looked at the child, and, as he saw the tears rolling down her checks, he seemed touched by her distress. Putting his band in his pocket, he drew out a shilling and offered it to her.
16. "No, sir, I thank you," sobbed she; "I do not want to be paid for doing right; I only wish you would not think me dishonest, for, indeed, it was a sore temptation. Oh! sir, if you had ever seen those you love best wanting the common comforts of life, you would know how hard it is for us always to do unto others as we would have others do unto us,"
17. The heart of the selfish man was touched. "There be things which are little upon the earth, but they are exceeding wise," murmured he, as he bade the little girl good night, and entered his house a sadder, and, it is to be hoped, a better man. Susan returned to her humble home with a lightened heart, and through the course of a long and useful life she never forgot her first temptation.
DEFINITIONS.—1. In-teg'ri-ty, honesty, uprightness. Con-vic'tion, strong belief. Ap-pealed', referred to. 2. Temp-ta'tion, that which has a tendency to induce one to do wrong. As-sails', attacks. 10. Con'flict, struggle. Bal'anced, weighed, compared. 12. Gruff, rough. 17. Mur'mured, spoke in a low voice. Light'ened, made cheerful or lighter.
EXERCISES.—What is the Golden Rule? What does it imply? Can a man be perfectly honest and still not follow the Golden Rule? What parable is a perfect illustration of its meaning? How was Susan tempted? What did she first think of doing? What changed her intention? Relate what happened when she returned the money. What effect did her action have?
LII. THE SNOW MAN. (143) By Marian Douglas.
1. Look! how the clouds are flying south! The winds pipe loud and shrill! And high above the white drifts stands The snow man on the hill.
2. Blow, wild wind from the icy north! Here's one who will not fear To feel thy coldest touch, or shrink Thy loudest blast to hear.
3. Proud triumph of the schoolboy's skill! Far rather would I be A winter giant, ruling o'er A frosty realm, like thee,
4. And stand amid the drifted snow, Like thee, a thing apart, Than be a man who walks with men, But has a frozen heart!
DEFINITIONS.—l. Pipe, whistle. 2. Shrink, to draw back on account of fear. 3. Triumph, success causing exultation. Realm, the territory over which authority is used, dominion.
EXERCISES.—With what is the snow man compared in this poem? What is meant by a man with "a frozen heart"? Do you think such a man would follow the Golden Rule?
LIII. ROBINSON CRUSOE'S HOUSE. (144)
Daniel DeFoe, the author of "Robinson Crusoe" (from which these selections are adapted), was born in London, England, in 1661, and died in 1731. He wrote a number of books; but his "Robinson Crusoe" is the only one that attained great notoriety.
1. I have already described my habitation, which was a tent under the side of a rock, surrounded with a strong pale of posts and cables, but I might now rather call it a wall, for I raised a kind of wall up against it of turf, about two feet thick on the outside; and, after some time (I think it was a year and a half) I raised rafters from it, leaning to the rock, and thatched or covered it with boughs of trees and such things as I could get to keep out the rain, which I found at some times of the year very violent.
2. I have already observed how I brought all my goods into this pale, and into the cave which I had made behind me; but I must observe, too, that at first this was a confused heap of goods, which, as they lay in no order, took up all my place, so that I had no room to turn myself. So I set to work to enlarge my cave and work farther into the earth; for it was a loose, sandy rock, which yielded easily to the labor I bestowed upon it.
3. And so when I found that I was pretty safe as to beasts of prey, I worked sideways into the rock; and then, turning to the right again, worked quite out, and made me a door to come out on the outside of my pale or fortification. This gave me not only egress and regress, as it was a back way to my tent and to my storehouse, but gave me room to stow my goods.