THE PLEASURE$ OF HORI0 E
AND THE COUNTRY.
FOR THE WINTER AND SUMMER HOLIDAYS
OF LITTLE PEOPLE.
BRILLIANTLY PRINTED IN COLOURS.
WILLIS P. HAZARD,
NO. 178 CHESTNUT STREET.
C. SHZ3EAS, PIUNTlR,
19 t. J-08 stmet.
THE EDITOR TO HIS YOUNG FRIENDS.
To sunrise and the blooming Spring
Should happy thoughts belong;
Then, Nature's voice delights to sing,
Enjoyment's powers are strong:
So, dear young friends, to you I bring
Befitting tale and song.
Ah, little children! if ye knew
How angel-eyes, in love,
Look down upon you from the blue
Of the calm skies above,
Ye would be careful what ye do,
And eager to improve.
Xi THE EDITOR TO HIS YOUNG FRIENDS.
A joyous host, a countless band,
In robes of snowy white,
Around the Throne, with harp in hand,
Take ever fresh delight,
Young tender souls to their sweet land
To beckon and invite.
They sorrow o'er your suffering,
They smooth your couch of sleep,
In danger's hour they succour bring,
O'er you a watch they keep:
In you, then, 'twere a cruel thing
To make those blest ones weep!
Each, like yourself, a little child
Once walked this earth beneath,
Saw what you see, and talked and smiled,
Till suddenly came Death,
And churchyard turf was o'er them piled-
Cold clay-devoid of breath.
THE EDITOR TO HIS YOUNG FRIENDS. xiii
But all the good went up to God,
To dwell with him for aye;
Their road is now a thornless road,
And bliss is theirs always;
To golden harps, by Him bestowed,
They carol night and day.
Brothers and sisters on that coast
Have met to part no more;
Why then should parents, sorrow-tost,
With sighs and tears deplore ?
The lost are not for ever lost-
They have but gone before!
Then keep your hearts from error free;
Down oft they look on you;
Your thoughts they watch, your ways they see,
And joy when you are true:
To think that ye condemned should be,
Would their high bliss subdue!
xiv THE EDITOR TO HIS YOUNG FRIENDS.
To little children, who are pure,
In thought, and word, and deed,
And shun what might to ill allure,
The Bible hath decreed
A glorious portion, ever sure,
And help in time of need.
Of themes befitting simple song,
There surely is no dearth,
If we but cast our eyes along
The Sea-the Air-the Earth;
Nor can the verse be reckoned wrong,
Which wakens harmless mirth.
Man has his seasons, and to each
Congenial thoughts pertain,
And pleasures lie in childhood's reach,
That life ne'er knows again;
Keep then your white souls, I beseech,
From guilt's polluting stain.
A VISIT TO THE OLD HALL, -
A PIC-NIO IN THE FOREST,
ROSE AND HARRY, -
THE FIRST DAY AT THE SEA,
THE HOLLY TREE,
A SCHOOL-BOY' CHRISTMAS CAROL, -
THE HONEY-STEW OF THE COUNTESS BERTHA,
WINTER AND THE CHILDREN, -
MRS. STRUTT'S SEMINARY,
LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.
THE ARRIVAL, -
THE HARVEST HOME,
THE CHRISTMAS TREE,
A VISIT TO THE OLD HALL.
EDWARD and KAT lived in a country town.
It was a cheerful, clean town, with wide streets,
and an old church that had large trees round it,
and ivy growing up the tower. Their house
had a garden behind it, in which they used to
play very happily, drive their hoops round the
walks, and run and jump about on the grass-
plot. They also made many pleasant little ex-
cursions into the country round, when their
sister Laura was able to go with them.
One of their favourite walks was through the
woods belonging to an ancient manor-house,
always called "The Old Hall," about a mile
from the town. It belonged to a rich noble-
man; but nobody had lived in it for a long time.
The gardens and park were, however, kept in
fine order; and it was said, that some day the
house would be put in repair and furnished.
As it was now, people could walk by the paths
through the woods close up to it.
One of these paths was just outside the wall
of the flower garden, and led up to the portico
of a sort of summer house or pavilion, partly
gone to ruin. The door of this pavilion was
always closed; but it was so shady and pleasant
all round there, that it was a favourite place for
Edward and Kate to play in, while Laura sat
under a tree reading; and they would often look
up at the beautiful roses, jasmines, and other
creepers that hung over the top of the wall, and
A VISIT TO THE OLD HALL.
wish they might go into the garden and see all
the lovely flowers they thought must be there.
They longed the more to be admitted within
the wall, and see not only the garden, but the
Old Hall itself, because a young carpenter, who
was at work for their papa, putting up a book-
case, had told them a great deal about it. This
carpenter, John Wilson, was a great friend of
theirs. He made a whole fleet of boats for
them, which they sailed in the water-butt, in
the garden, and taught them how to saw, and
plane, and knock in nails; and while all this
was going on, he would describe the painted
windows and carved ceilings and walls in the
Old Hall; and he knew all its wonders quite
well, for he had worked there for several
months, repairing some parts of the rooms that
were going to destruction; and he said he hoped
his lordship would soon have it all thoroughly
done, and that he should be employed to do the
After, all this, Kate and Edward were quite
pleased, when, one day, John brought them per-
mission to go and see it, from Mrs. Hollis, the
housekeeper, who lived in one of the lodges,
and was allowed to show the place to visitors.
If they went to the door of the pavilion in their
favourite path, and rung the bell, she would
admit them, he said. They thanked John very
much for getting such a pleasure for them, and
then ran to their mamma to ask her leave to go,
which she gave them directly; and, as the next
day was very fine, they set out after their early
dinner, in high spirits, accompanied by Laura.
To add to their pleasure, their mamma had told
them they might order a donkey-chaise in the
village, near the Hall gates, to bring them home,
because she was sure they would be tired; and
this was a thing they enjoyed extremely.
A VISIT TO THE OLD HALL.
"Since you are going into the village, Master
Edward, will you be so kind as to ask at the
post-office if there's a letter for me ?" said John
Wilson, when Edward went to bid him good-bye.
"Perhaps you will bring me good luck."
Edward readily promised to ask for the letter,
and then whispered to Kate, "It's from his
father he wants to hear, I know. He told me
he should never be happy till he did. I wish
we could bring him one."
But it was of no use to wish. There was no
letter for John Wilson. So they ordered the
donkey-chaise to be at the pavilion in three
hours, and went on to the appointed place, and
rang the bell.
Mrs. Hollis did not keep them long waiting;
and when she came, she looked at them very
kindly, and asked them to walk in. She was a
formal little old lady, with a black silk gown on,
that rustled as she moved, and wore a very
white starched cap and handkerchief.
They liked the inside of the pavilion very
much. The floor they trod on was made of
squares of black and white marble, and there
were seats and a round marble table. A long
flight of white polished steps in front of it led
down to a broad gravel walk that bounded one
end of the flower garden. The garden was
curiously laid out, in an old-fashioned style, and
the green lawn in the middle looked so smooth
and tempting, that they could not resist running
down the steps towards it the moment they saw
it; and Mrs. Hollis and Laura followed them.
Their feet sank in the thick velvet-like grass
as they walked over it. In the middle there
was a large round pond, with a fountain which
sprung up into the air and then fell again in
showers of sparkling drops, that ruffled the sur-
A VISIT TO THE OLD HALL.
face of the water, and made it glance in the sun
as if it were all over diamonds. It was so clear,
that, though it was deep, they could see every
blade and leaf of the green mossy weeds among
the white pebbles at the bottom; and presently
they saw skimming through it a shoal of gold
and silver fish. Little Kate had a slice of bread
in the pocket of her apron, that her mamma had
given her in case they should feel hungry before
they got home; so, as Mrs. Hollis told her the
fish would come up to the surface to eat crumbs,
she quickly threw some in for them, and up they
came, one after another, and swallowed the
pieces in their gaping mouths, while their bright
scales flashed like fire as they caught the sun-
It was some time before the children could
leave this delightful pond; but when they did,
they saw that at each end there was a smaller
one, both of which had their fountains, that
sprung up, as if in imitation of the larger one;
and that, between the centre pond and each of
these, there was a large oval flower bed, and, at
all the four corners of the lawn, a round one.
These flower beds were bordered with ivy, so
carefully pegged down that it formed thick
wreaths of dark-green leaves, and made a beau-
tiful setting for the bright flowers within. White
lilies, tiger lilies, and tall lupins were in the
middle; carnations, white and scarlet geraniums
round them, with brilliant blue salvias, migno-
nette, fuchsias, and many other lovely things.
Besides these beds, there were at regular dis-
tances tree roses on the lawn, with round bushy
heads, full of many different shades, sending out
the most delicious scent; and the wall which
bounded the gravel walk, and they had so often
looked at from the outside, was covered with all
A VISIT TO THE OLD HALL.
manner of creepers, trained roses, honeysuckle,
maurandia, jasmine, passion-flowers, and many
As soon as they could make up their minds to
go out of this bright garden, Mrs. Hollis showed
them that one side of it was formed by a wing of
the house, and that large windows opened into
it: but these were all shut at present; so she
led them by a gateway in the wall to a long
straight walk, which led under two tall cedar
trees, whose branches met over their heads, to
the principal entrance of the mansion. She
then, with a large key which hung from her
waist, together with several smaller ones, opened
the great heavy door, and they all went in.
At first the light seemed so dim that they
scarcely saw well around them; for their eyes
had been looking at bright flowers, sparkling
waters, and green trees and grass basking in the
sun; but they soon saw that they were in a lofty
square entrance hall, with beautiful painted
glass windows, that threw rich colours, blue,
red, purple, yellow, and green on the marble
floor; and that the stone frames of the windows
were carved and ornamented, and the stone walls
and roof also; and that iron and steel armour of
knights, with lances and helmets, were ranged
in niches round the walls; and that long gal-
leries, with many doors into different rooms, and
more painted windows, went off on each side;
and that opposite to them was a wide staircase,
all the steps of which were of dark oak, with
carved rails, on the top of which were figures of
animals reared up on their hind legs, and wreaths
of fruit and flowers, all carved in dark oak.
Then they went through many large rooms,
with walls and ceilings of the same dark oak,
beautifully carved in squares and other forms, to
represent flowers and fruit, birds, and angels
A VISIT TO THE OLD HALL.
with wings; and these rooms had immense
fire-places without grates, meant to burn logs of
wood. Kate and Edward went under the richly
ornamented mantel-pieces and looked up the
wide chimneys. Then the windows -they
liked them better than all; for the walls were
so thick that each window seemed to be at the
end of a little room of its own; and others were
bay windows, and these seemed to be still larger
rooms; and the frames were richly carved; and
they looked over the wide park with its green
slopes and spreading trees, sweeping the grass
with their long branches, and towering up to-
wards the bright blue sky, and casting deep
shadows on the sunny grass; and a clear river
went winding among them; and all looked so
lovely, that every time the children passed one
of these windows, it seemed to them that they
saw a new picture set in a dark frame.
At last, when they had gone through 'so
many rooms, that they began to keep very close
to Laura, lest they should be lost, and had
been up the wide staircase and through other
rooms above, they heard, with joy, that they
were next to go into the park. They followed
Mrs. Hollis through a court and an old gateway,
and here she bid them good-bye; and after
thanking her with all their hearts for her kind-
ness, they turned round, and lost not a moment,
but away they ran over the grass to the banks
of the river.
It was delightful to stand in the shade and
watch the running water rippling and tinkling
over rocky stones that had the brightest green
moss on them; and to see the taper points of
the weeping willows, that dipped in the stream,
and were always waving and trembling as it
carried them with it. Sometimes a trout or
A VISIT TO THE OLD HALL.
perch would dart through the deep parts and
disappear in an instant. They threw leaves
and little sticks in, and watched them sailing
away, and wished they had brought some of
John's boats with them; then they dipped in
their hands to feel the cool, refreshing water
glide through their fingers. Suddenly there
appeared round a point two lovely white swans.
On they came, arching their necks, and ruling
their wings. Kate took out her bread again,
and threw piece after piece to them, till all was
gone, while they swam about, catching them in
their black beaks.
Now Laura called to the children to look at
the trees. What great trees they were I Those
round the church, which they had thought so
large, would only make one arm of these. They
crept under the branches of the beeches and
limes, and there they were in a green little
world,-green leaves above and all round, and
green grass under foot, and the flickering sun-
light peeping through upon them. Then they
crept out again, and clambered up steep knolls,
and ran down sloping banks, and every now and
then stopped in wonder before some giant tree,
with an enormous trunk, that, when they took
hold of each other's hands, and then Laura's,
and all three stretched out their arms, to the
utmost, they had still not grasped half of. They
could not decide which kind of tree was the
most beautiful,-the oak, with its rough bark,
strong arms, and deep, rich green; the beech,
with smooth, shining stem, and graceful, sweep-
ing branches; the tufted elms; or the limes, so
light and feathery. Then there were Spanish
chestnuts, and horse-chestnuts, and dark firs,
and birches with bark as white as silver. It
was impossible to know which was most beau-
A VISIT TO THE OLD HALL.
Now they wound round a woody hill, into a
beautiful glade, and came upon the whole herd
of deer, pretty spotted creatures, some with
branching horns, some grazing, some lying in
the shade. Quietly as the children tried to get
near them, they were startled, and bounded off
like lightning, but did not go very far, and con-
tinued in sight for some time.
The walk through the park had taken a good
while, and the children began to feel tired; so
Laura persuaded them to sit down and rest on a
pleasant bank, all overgrown with wreaths of
periwinkle, with its pretty blue flowers. While
they sat, there came past, like a stately lady in
a court dress, a splendid peacock, his gorgeous
tail sweeping the ground, his crested head erect,
and his lovely neck glancing purple, green, and
gold. Then came another, and another, and
then several pea-hens, not so showy, but very
graceful in form. Kate wished she had kept
some bread for them; but they seemed to be
satisfied with admiration; and one of them
spread his tail up, like a fan, as if to please
them, and displayed all its brilliant eyes, that
shone like gold and gems in the sun.
When the peacocks had passed on, Kate began
to wish she had kept a little bread for herself
and Edward, for the walk had been long, and
she felt hungry. Edward declared he was more
thirsty than hungry, but consoled himself with
the thoughts of the nice drive home in the don-
key-chaise. They had made the circuit of the
park, and were close to the garden wall, and the
gardener's house, which stood at one corner of
it; so Laura, who was always kind, went to the
door, and asked if she could buy a little milk.
The gardener's wife said she would sell her some,
and also let her buy a few home-baked cakes,
A VISIT TO THE OLD HALL.
and lent her a bowl, and spoon, and plate, and
said, if the young lady and gentleman would like
to sit down in the pavilion, above the garden,
and take their refreshment there, they might
leave all these things on the marble table, and
she could easily fetch them away by and by.
This was a very pleasant idea, and away they
went merrily up the gravel walk to enjoy their
feast. They took off their straw hats when they
reached the shady pavilion, that they might feel
the cool air, and poured out their milk; but
before tasting it, they went to the door to see if
the donkey-chaise had come.
It was not there yet; but, looking round, they
saw, lying by the path, an old man, who seemed
to be asleep, and who rested his head on the lap
of a young girl sitting by his side. She was
leaning her head on her hand, and had not heard
the children come to the door; for she seemed
filled with sad thoughts, and tears kept dropping
through her fingers.
Kate and Edward stood with pitying looks on
the steps, when the old man raised his head, but
seemed too weary to open his eyes, and said in
a feeble voice,
"We must go on, Martha."
"Are you any better, father?" said she, wiping
her tears away.
"Not much-hunger and sorrow are bad
nurses, dear," he replied; "but night will come
upon us before we get to any place to sleep in,
if we do not move on."
"Poor old man! He is tired and hungry, and
has got nothing to eat," whispered little Kate to
Edward; and the tears came into her eyes. "I
am not at all hungry now: are you?"
"Let us go and bring the milk to them," Ed-
A VISIT TO THE OLD HALL.
They ran to their table; and while Kate took
up the bowl of milk, and, carefully holding it
in both hands, carried it to the door, Edward
brought the plate of cakes, and Laura followed,
wondering what they were going to do.
The young girl had already risen from her
seat; the old man was sitting up, and looked
sadly pale and tired.
"Will you drink this milk ?" said Kate, raising
her eyes to his face, while Edward held the plate
of cakes to him.
"God bless you, little angels," said the old
man. "He has sent you to help us in our sore
"Oh! thank and bless you, kind young lady
and gentleman," cried his daughter.
"Drink some first, Martha, my child," said
her father, taking the bowl, and holding it to-
wards her. She obeyed him, and seemed to
enjoy the draught, as if she had wanted it very
much indeed; and then he drank, and it seemed
to do him so much good that the children felt
quite joyous as they looked at them both.
"Now eat the cakes," said Edward; and as
soon as each had taken one he set the plate
down, that they might not be hurried, and ran
to get the hats, for the donkey-chaise drove up
at the moment.
Laura kissed her little brother and sister very
affectionately, as she tied their hats for them,
and then asked the old man if he and his daugh-
ter had far to go.
He said they were still thirty miles from home,
and that they had walked all the way from
London, where they had gone hoping to get some
money that was owing him, and besides, to meet
his son, whose ship was expected; but he had
been disappointed in both his hopes, and, what
, T -
A VISIT TO THE OLD HALL. 87
was worse, he feared his poor boy's ship had
been wrecked, and he should never see him
"Poor sailor boy!" said Kate.
"But do not despair," said Laura. "If you
had waited a little longer he might have come."
"I waited too long," he replied; "for our
money is all spent,-we have none left, and only
trust to selling a few balls and pin-cushions my
poor girl has made, to get a lodging to-night, and
a bit of bread to-morrow."
"And have you no other son ?" asked Laura.
"I have another, lady," said he; "but he's the
same as dead to me. He got into wild ways
after he had served his apprenticeship, and I
was harsh to him, and he left his home, and I
have never heard of him since. Many misfor-
tunes fell on me afterwards. Yes, yes, I was
The old man looked down gloomily. In a
minute, however, he raised his head and said,
" But God bless you for your kind hearts! we
are so refreshed by this sweet milk and these
cakes that we shall walk on to Summerton quite
heartily. It's the nearest town, they tell me."
As he spoke he got up, and bowing respect-
fully to Laura, and smiling gratefully to the
children, who were busy putting all the things
belonging to the gardener's wife where she had
directed, he began to walk away; but he walked
quite feebly, and poor Martha's shoes were worn
out, and she limped as she followed him.
Little Kate had just taken her seat in the
"How tired they look!" said she, as she saw
them going slowly on.
I will run after them, and direct them to our
house," said Laura. "I am sure mamma will
help them to a night's lodging."
A VISIT TO THE OLD HALL.
And Laura, dear," said Kate, getting out of
the chaise, if Edward does not mind walking,
I don't; so tell them-shall we, Edward ?-to
get in instead of us."
"Yes, yes," said Edward, eagerly.
"That I will, dear children," Laura answered;
and, stopping the old man and his daughter, she
succeeded, after a great deal of persuasion, in
making them accept the children's offer, and
then helped them in.
Much as they liked a drive in a donkey-chaise,
no drive in the world could have made these
children so happy as they felt in their walk
home. Their hearts full of joy, they bounded
along, jumping over tree stumps, running up
and down banks, and never thinking of either
fatigue, hunger, or thirst.
"Here we come, John," they cried, as they
approached their own door, and saw John coming
out after his day's work, his basket on his shoul-
The donkey-chaise had got behind in climbing
the hill at the entrance of the town, but it came
up at this moment. John's basket fell from his
hand, and fell heavily on the door-step, and he
rushed towards it, crying,
"Father! father! how is it I see you here ?"
"John-my dear son!" cried the old man;
and they grasped each other by both hands, and
seemed to search in each other's faces for answers
to many questions; and then Martha took hold
of her brother's arm, and he remembered her,
changed as she was from the merry, rosy girl
he had left her.
"Come home with me, father, and my poor
Martha," said John; "and please God you shall
never know want more. If I had known you
were come to poverty, never would I have waited
A VISIT TO THE OLD HALL. 41
for a letter of pardon before I went home to
It is all along of those dear, blessed children,
that fed us when we were hungry and thirsty,
and sent us on in their chaise when we were
weary, that we have found you now."
John gave his little friends a look of grati-
tude that said more than many words; and then,
all bidding good-night, they separated, the old
man and Martha going home with him, and the
children running to their mamma to tell her all
the adventures of this happy day, round their
cheerful tea-table. They now understood why
John was so anxious for a letter, and why he
never received it, because his father had gone to
Next evening they went to see him, and
found him at supper with his father and sister,
who were dressed in nice new clothes, and
looked much better and happier. They all wel-
comed Kate and Edward joyfully, and gave
them seats, and John went into his little garden,
in which he worked at his spare hours, and
picked them a dish of fine ripe strawberries,
which they enjoyed very much.
A week afterwards, John went to his father's
village to sell off his furniture, and give up his
cottage, for they had resolved to live all together
in Summerton. Kate and Edward went to his
house the evening he was expected home, and
stood at the door watching for him, while Mar-
tha got tea ready, and her father swept up the
"Here he comes!" cried Edward, who saw
"And there's a sailor-boy with him," cried
Now there was a joyful meeting. John had
A VISIT TO THE OLD HALL.
found his brother on the road to his father's vil-
lage. His ship had come into port two days
The old man used to say afterwards, when he
looked back to this time, that everything went
well with him from the moment he saw the faces
of those dear children; and they always remem-
bered the day when they visited the Old Hall,
as one of the happiest of their lives.
As for the fine Old Hall, John's hope was ful-
filled about it. His lordship had it repaired and
furnished, and came to live there, and made
John his head carpenter there; so that he never
wanted work, and in time, took his brother into
partnership, and the two sons made their father
and sister happy and comfortable all their days.
A PIC-NIC IN THE FOREST.
"IT must be six o'clock!" cried Florence
Thornhill, starting up in bed; "and it is a
lovely morning. Emily, it must be six o'clock."
"Has Jane called us ?" said Emily, almost in
"No: but-hush! One, two, three, four.
Oh! the clock only struck four;" and Florence
fell fast asleep in an instant.
In another hour she jumped up again. "It
must be"-the clock began to strike as she
spoke, and she counted, "one, two, three, four,
five,-only five yet," and once more fell asleep.
All was quiet, till, another hour having past,
A PIC-NIC IN THE FOREST.
Jane came in, saying, "It is just going to strike
six, young ladies."
Florence was up in an instant, and Emily
soon after her. They had been invited by their
friends, Mr. and Mrs. Grove, who lived on the
borders of Epping Forest, to join a young party
who were to spend the whole day in the Forest,
and to carry provisions with them, and dine
there. To Florence and Emily, who lived in
London, this was a delightful prospect. They
had thought of nothing else for a week. They
were quickly dressed, ran down to breakfast, and
before it was over, the carriage that was to take
them to the railway, was at the door. Their
papa and mamma wished them a very happy
day, and they soon drove off, accompanied by
Jane, to take care of them; a basket containing
a large cake, and a cold pie, their mamma's con-
tribution to the feast, being put in, and given to
Fast as they drove, it was not fast enough to
satisfy their impatience. Florence, especially,
was "quite certain" they should be too late, and
stretched out her head to look at every clock
they passed. They were, however, in excellent
time, and in a few minutes they were seated in
the train. Off they set; and even to them it
seemed wonderfully soon when they stopped at
the station, and heard a voice at the window
ask, "Are the Miss Thornhills here?"
It was Mrs. Grove's coachman; and there was
Ernest, her youngest little boy, waiting in the
open carriage. They were soon seated by his
side, Jane by the coachman, and away they drove
It was a lovely morning in August. The sky
was bright blue, with a few heavy white clouds
sailing over it; but Jacob, the coachman, who
was anxiously questioned, and who looked very
A PIC-NIC IN THE FOREST.
grave and wise, declared there would be no rain.
The air felt deliciously fresh to the two little
London girls. They thought the cottages looked
very clean and pretty; then the gardens were
gay with dahlias and hollyhocks, the orchards
full of red-cheeked apples, and a pleasant smell
of wood smoke every now and then in the air.
They had twenty questions to ask of Ernest,
and at every house they came to, they said, "Is
this your house now ?"
At last they stopped at a white gate. It was
thrown open directly by Fred, Ernest's elder
brother, who had been watching for them; and
at the sound of the wheels, his two sisters, Annie
and Jessy, Eame running out to receive them,
followed by two little boys, whose names were
Alfred and Johnny, who had come to join the
party; and behind all, came bounding and bark-
ing, Dash, the dog.
When they stopped at the door, they thought
this was the prettiest house of any they had seen
yet. The porch was covered with clematis and
jasmine, and the borders and beds full of bright
flowers. Out of the porch came Mr. and Mrs.
Grove, and kissed and welcomed them, and told
them that they were all ready to start for the
So much the better. They longed to be there.
The contents of the basket were quickly trans-
ferred to a certain large pannier, that stood in
the lobby; Jane was recommended to the care
of the maids, who promised to take her a nice
walk; and in a little while the whole happy
party was on the road to the Forest, Mr. Grove
leading the way, because it was declared that he
knew the prettiest paths. He took them up a
wooded bank, among straggling trees.
"Emily and Florence must shut their eyes
now," cried Annie; "I will lead them."
A PIC-NIC IN THE FOREST.
"No, you take Emily, and I will lead Flo-
rence," said Ernest.
Both shut their eyes, and followed to the top
of the bank.
"Now you may look."
They opened their eyes. Below them lay the
fine old Forest. It looked like a whole ocean of
green tree-tops, stretching miles and miles to
right and left, filling all the valley before them,
and clothing the ridge of the opposite hill till
they were lost against the sky. A narrow wind-
ing path at their feet dived down into this green
world, and down it, in a moment, ran all with
joyous shouts. In half a minute they could see
nothing on every side of them but trees.
The trees were of the strangest shapes: very
short, with bushy heads, and stems that leaned
all manner of ways and were knotted and
mossy, and sometimes they looked like curious
wood creatures dancing. They were so close
together that their branches met together over
head, and formed a thick roof of leaves. Long
wreaths of ivy and honeysuckle twined about
them, and great ferns grew among them, often
taller than the trees themselves; because they
were allowed to grow as they liked, but the
trees were lopped every few years to supply
wood to all the people that lived near. Round
about these twisted stems, and among these
tangled undergrowths, the children ran and
danced, sometimes stopping to gather a pretty
blue-bell, or some bright berries, or to peep into
a deserted bird's nest, or look at some insect,
Mr. Grove only warning them to keep near the
path lest they should be lost.
"0 come into this lovely arbour," cried Emily,
stopping before a group of trees, where the
branches had met over head, and then drooped
A PIC-NIC IN THE FOREST. 51
downwards, leaving a hollow in the middle.
As she stooped to look in, a rabbit, which had
been asleep there, rushed out, and scudded
away, with Dash after it, barking and yelping.
But Dash soon came back, hanging out his
tongue, and looking rather foolish, for the rabbit
had found his hole near, and was safe in it in a
The children all crept into Emily's arbour,
and nestled within it very comfortably.
"Now tell us a story, Annie," said little
0 yes," said Florence; "something about a
fairy that lived in the trees, or-"
Just then something rustled the branches
over head, and a black cow, with a white face
and large horns, looked down upon them.
"Oh! Oh!" exclaimed Florence, and began
to make her way out at the opposite side of the
"It's only a cow. It will not hurt you,"
cried Fred and Annie at once. But she was not
used to be so near a cow, and made her way out,
coming bounce against a large pig that was lying
under a hazel tree on its side.
"Ouf! Ouf!" grunted the pig, and, scrambling
up, he began to move off, but presently turned
round, and looked at her as if it had occurred
to him, on reflection, that she had no right to
Come and drive away this great pig, Freddy,"
That was soon done. Away galloped the pig,
crushing the thick branches under his hoofs.
They had all crept out after Florence, and the
path on that side looked so pretty that Annie
called to her papa to ask him to lead them
down it. It went winding among beech trees,
which, when they were lopped, had thrown out
A PIC-NIC IN THE FOREST.
long feathery branches from their roots and
stems, making a beautiful green wall on each
side, and meeting in an arch above. As they
walked along it, they saw many and many
another, quite as beautiful, branching off in all
directions, like endless shrubberies, and were
often tempted to run down them, but for the
fear of losing themselves.
"What is that tinkling bell I hear every now
and then ?" asked Emily.
That is a bell round a cow's neck," answered
Mrs. Grove. "The cow that startled Florence
so much had probably twenty companions feed-
ing near us, and one or two always have bells
to guide their owners where to find them at
"And were there a number of pigs too?"
"There are great numbers in the Forest.
Nearly all the cottagers keep them, and let
them roam about in search of roots and nuts;
but they are unsocial creatures, and seldom feed
together. In the evenings you may see them,
one by one, issuing from the several paths out
of the trees, and each making his way to his
own home. There they stand grunting and
squeaking at the door of their styes till some
one lets them in.
How funny they must look !" said Florence,
"But how sensible of them!" said Emily.
"I had no idea pigs were so clever. I am sure
I should not know the way out of the Forest."
The path had now led them to the borders of
a clear little stream, flowing in the bottom of
the valley, among stones and stumps covered
with bright green moss. They crossed it and
came to an open grassy space, where twenty or
A PIC-NIC IN THE FOREST. 56
thirty rough, shaggy-looking horses were feed-
ing; these only lifted their heads for a minute,
to look at the visitors, and then went on eating.
Now they went along a green path, among
bushes where the bright sun beamed down upon
"0 look! what quantities of blackberries!"
All were scattered among the brambles in a
moment, enjoying the delights of blackberry
gathering. The fruit hung ripe and black in
large bunches; fingers and lips were soon dyed
with the juice, and not a few stains and holes
were made in frocks. Then Annie's basket was
filled, that they might take some home for Jane.
Mr. Grove now called them all together; for
it was time to go on. All were soon collected,
except Jessie and Emily. They were called,
but no answer came, and no one could see them
"I will climb a tree and look out," said Fred.
"I shall be sure to see them." Accordingly he
climbed the highest he could find, and looked all
"I see them," he cried. There they go, run-
ning exactly the wrong way. Holloa! Jessie!
Emily! Stop!" And he took out his handker-
chief and waved it.
All the children stood looking up anxiously.
"Do they see you ?" asked Mr. Grove.
"They have stopped and are looking about.
They see me now. Here they come," said Fred,
beginning to slide down; and as he reached the
ground they came running up quite out of
breath, and rather frightened at the idea that
they might have lost themselves.
They continued to walk for nearly half an
hour near the stream, among scattered trees,
stopping every now and then to gather long
A PIC-NIC IN THE FOREST.
wreaths of briony, or honeysuckle, or ivy, or to
watch the rabbits that started out of the bushes,
or listen to a woodpigeon or stock-dove at a dis-
tance, the only sounds that reached them in this
silent place. At last they came to a grove of
fine large trees, stretching as far as they could
see in all directions. It looked almost dark in
there, so great was the contrast with the sunny
place in which they stood. The little stream
took its course under the trees, which hung
arching over it; and by the path at its side they
went in under the tall trees. As they entered
they ceased to laugh and talk, and felt inclined
to whisper. It was a beautiful place. The
ground was brown with the leaves of last
autumn; the branches met over head, at a
great height, and everywhere green light was
Presently they found a nook where the stream
had been checked in its course by a fallen tree,
and had collected into a round pool. On the
bridge made by this tree all the children had
soon seated themselves, watching the water
foaming over one part where it had made a
channel for itself, and glancing in the straggling
sunbeams that came flickering through the leaves.
Look at that squirrel peeping at us out of its
nest," whispered Johnny.
Looking up, they saw, after a time, the round
bright eye of a squirrel, high up in the tree
over their heads, and soon they spied another
at a little distance, fussing about among the
leaves on the ground, finding nuts for his little
ones. Perhaps they made some noise, for he
took fright and climbed up a tall stem as quick
as lightning, and then leaped to a tree opposite,
through the air, where they could see him quite
well, with his bushy brown tail curled above his
A PIC-NIC IN THE FOREST.
"Hush!" said Mr. Grove, at this moment.
"Look there !"
They turned where he pointed, and saw come
silently tripping along, one behind another, six
or seven of the Forest deer. The children re-
mained so still that the timid creatures never
saw or heard them, but passed on among the
trees out of sight.
A rustling among the leaves was now heard,
as if some one was coming. Who should it be but
Jacob the coachman, leading the horse that had
brought the carriage from the station, but who
now bore two large panniers on his back, instead
of drawing a carriage. The horse's name was Sir
"Here comes Jacob with Sir Toby. Is this
where we are to dine, papa? 0 what a lovely
place to dine in !" exclaimed several voices.
All collected round the panniers directly, and
now mamma took the direction of affairs.
Fix on the spot where we shall lay the cloth,"
They scattered about to choose a place. One
fixed here, another there; at last all agreed that
the most beautiful had been found. It was a
round space covered with soft grass, where the
trees and bushes left just a sufficient opening.
The stream running behind the bushes, but
close by, would supply them with delicious
water. Here, therefore, they fixed it should be.
The white tablecloth was spread smoothly,
and looked very pretty with its green border of
Now, Dash, take care of my shawl," said
"And of my bonnet," said Emily. Dash
accordingly took his place beside the bonnet and
Jacob unpacked the mugs, and a tumbler,
A PIC-NIC IN THE FOREST. 61
some spoons, knives, and forks, the salt and
pepper. Annie, assisted by Alfred and Johnny,
took all these things, put them down, and sta-
tioned herself at one end to direct the proceed-
ings. A pile of plates came next. Emily
placed these opposite to Annie; then a large jar
of milk, which Jessy put by them.
"Who will carry this pie ?" said Mrs. Grove.
"I will,-let me," said little Ernest; so it was
trusted to him, and he brought it quite safely.
A round basket, piled with fruit, came next.
There were grapes, peaches, apples, pears, and
plums. Florence begged to carry the fruit, and
it was put on her head, and she followed Ernest.
Behind her came Fred with the cake.
While these were laid on the tablecloth, other
things were coming out of the panniers,-cold
fowls and ham, tarts and bread. When all was
put down, it looked a splendid feast. They took
their places. A tree stump was found for papa
and mamma, but the children chose to sit on the
grass. Never was there a merrier party. Even
Jacob, grave as he was, could not help smiling
at the shouts of laughter that reached him as he
sat on a large stone, eating his plateful of cold
pie, and letting Sir Toby feast on the short
grass. The children carved, handed the plates,
and managed everything. Mr. and Mrs. Grove
were not allowed to take any trouble, but were
waited on by all. There was a great deal to do,
running to the stream for water, handing things
round, changing the plates, and then clearing
away, and giving the empty dishes to Jacob's
charge to be packed. Dash was not forgotten,
and seemed to enjoy himself very much. After-
wards they sat still for some time, and told
stories, asked riddles, and sang songs.
"Now, Annie," said Mrs. Grove, rising as the
A PIC-NIC IN THE FOREST.
last song ended, "your papa and I must go
home, but we will leave you here to play for an
hour or two. Jacob can remain, and will see
you safely home."
They were delighted with this permission,
and lost no time in beginning some games.
They had "Follow my leader," "Hunt the
hare," and then "Hide and seek." It was a
capital place for this; there were hollow trees,
thick bushes, and deep holes, and one after
another hid and was found after a great deal of
fun. At last it was Florence's turn. She
seemed to have fixed on a very good place, for
no one could find her. In vain they searched
in every hole and stump, looked up trees where
it was impossible she could have climbed, and
into great bramble bushes, where she could not
have crept without being scratched to pieces.
Nearly two hours had passed since they began
their games, and Jacob declared it was time to
"Florence!" cried Emily, "where are you?
come out: we ought to go home."
"Florence! we give it up; we cannot find
you; where are you, Florence ?" was shouted by
Still no answer.
"It's not play, Flory; we are frightened,"
cried Emily. "Do speak."
All was still silent.
Come and help us to look, Jacob," said An-
nie; and Jacob came, with his grave face, and
began to beat the bushes, and peer about every-
"Suppose we should never find her again!"
said poor Emily, almost crying. "Dear Flory,
do speak!" And she sat down on the grass with
a feeling of fear, of she did not know what.
A PIC-NIC IN THE FOREST.
It must be six o'clock, and it's a lovely morn-
ing," exclaimed a voice at her feet, and up start-
ed Florence from under a heap of dry leaves,
where she had hidden, and felt so comfortable
that she had fallen fast asleep.
Here she is! Florence is found !" cried Emily,
in joy; and from all quarters the seekers came
running to the spot, while Florence, hardly
knowing where she was, stared round her in
Fred came up first: "Where had-?" he
cried; but no more was heard, for he sunk into
the ground and disappeared.
Johnny came next, running towards them:
"So you are-" he began, and also sunk into
the ground, and disappeared.
Alfred was next. "Ah, Florence! I am-"
he sunk, and disappeared.
Florence started up; but when she had got
on her knees she began slipping and sinking,
and in an instant had vanished.
"What is it? where are-?" cried Emily,
rushing forward, and sunk like the others.
Bless me!" cried Jacob. Stop a moment!
Wait a bit, Miss Jessie; hold fast by that stump,
Miss Annie!" But both were running too fast
to stop themselves, and when they set their feet
on the spot where all the rest had vanished,
down they went and disappeared.
Little Ernest had taken longer to come up
than the rest, for he had been dreadfully fright-
ened about Florence, and had gone to a great
distance to seek her, and had seen all this with
the greatest wonder. He was running fast to-
wards the place, when Florence's head appeared
"Dear Florence!" he cried, holding out both
his hands, and catching hold of hers, which now
A PIC-NIC IN THE FOREST.
came above ground also, "where are you? Have
you all tumbled into one of those ponds covered
with leaves, papa told us about? Shall you all
be drowned ?"
He pulled her with all his might as he spoke,
and she came safely up on firm ground beside
him, laughing heartily.
"Drowned!" cried Fred, whose face now ap-
peared; "I was never so comfortable in my life.
It's like the softest bed, only a great deal nicer."
"I do not wonder Florence went to sleep,"
said Alfred, whose head next came in sight.
"We are in a pit full of nice dry leaves."
Jacob had, by this time, cut a long stick,
which he held out to them, and by its help he
got them out, after a great deal of laughing, with
their hair stuck over with brown leaves.
Yes, Jacob, we really will make haste and
go home," said Annie, in answer to his represen-
station that they should be very late. "But
where's Dash ?"
"Dash! Dash!" cried Fred.
Dash barked angrily in answer, from a dis-
tance, but did not come.
"Where's my bonnet!" said Emily.
"And my shawl?" said Annie. Dash barked
angrily again. "0, now I remember. Poor
Dash! He is watching them all this time!"
They ran back to the place where they had
dined, and there they found him at his post,
the bonnet and shawl on one side, and the
basket of blackberries on the other. He was
praised and patted till he had quite forgotten
his anger, and was up and ready for anything
"Now, then, where are the panniers and Sir
Toby ?" said Annie.
"Here are the panniers all ready packed,
A PIC-NIC IN THE FOREST.
Miss Annie," answered Jacob; "but, bless me!
where's Sir Toby?"
They looked all around, and presently dis-
covered Sir Toby trotting very contentedly
along the path homewards. He had gone
nearly out of sight already.
"Bless me!" exclaimed poor Jacob again,
"what shall I do? I cannot leave you young
ladies and gentlemen alone. Wo there! Wo
there! The horse will not stop. He may come
"Run after him, Jacob," cried Fred. "We
will stay by the panniers."
Jacob ran on. They thought he would suc-
ceed at first, for Sir Toby stopped to eat, but no
sooner did he hear Jacob behind him, than he
pricked up his ears and trotted on again. It
was impossible to help laughing, troublesome as
it was. How to get home all the heavy things
they could not think. Fred ran on a little way
to see if he could do anything to help. Turning
the corner of a thicket, he came against a donkey
feeding, and saw behind the trees a little cottage,
with a great stack of wood by it much higher
than itself. An old woman stood at the door.
"Is that your horse yonder, running away,
Master?" said she; and she looked so good-
natured, that he told her all the case.
If our donkey will do to carry the panniers
he shall go with you," said she, "and my son
can lead him and bring him back."
Fred thanked her heartily, and then made
signs to Jacob to go on again. Jacob had begun
to run back, despairing of stopping Sir Toby,
and distracted between his duty to the young
ladies and gentlemen and the horse.
"Go after your horse shouted the old woman,
pointing energetically along the path. Seeing
A PIC-NIC IN THE FOREST. 71
he still doubted, she led the donkey up a steep
bank and pushed her son to his head. Jacob
understood; he saw that this stout country lad
and this donkey would supply the place of him-
self and Sir Toby, and with a heart eased of half
its load of care, he started off again in pursuit.
The donkey was soon loaded, not forgetting
the blackberries, and the whole party moved
homewards after many thanks to the kind old
woman, who promised to come up to tea and
return with her son. Sir Toby was safe in his
stable when they arrived. He had gone straight
to the door and waited there for Jacob.
Tea was ready in the pretty drawing-room;
and when they were going to take their places
round the table, with clean hands and faces,
hair brushed smooth, and holes mended up as
well as they could be in a hurry, the door opened,
and in came Mr. and Mrs. Thornhill. Here was
joy for Emily and Florence. It was to meet
them Mr. Grove had left the Forest; and when
it was announced that, instead of going away
next morning, they were all to remain together
for a week, the pleasure was complete. The
adventures of the day were talked over, and
seemed to give as much enjoyment, now they
were remembered, as when they were actually
happening; and, better than all, they could look
forward to many more such happy days, for
they had a whole week before them. Emily
and Florence felt how delightful it would be to
take their papa and mamma to the beautiful
places, and show them where they saw the cows,
and pigs, and the other creatures, and where
they picked blackberries, and where they dined,
and, above all, the pit of dry leaves; and Mr.
Grove declared that he could lead them to many
other places, and through many more paths,
quite as beautiful as those they had already
seen in the old Forest.
WHEN the trees were green, and the hedges
full of wild roses, and birds singing, and butter-
flies fluttering over the sweet clover-fields, in
the pleasant month of June, Willie and Alice
Grey received an invitation to go to their grand-
papa's on the last day of hay-making, when the
hay is carted and stacked. Their grandpapa
had a garden, a field, and a cow, and a swing in
the field; and at all times, to go to see him and
their aunts was a great pleasure, but at hay-
making time it was more than ever delightful;
so they set out with their mamma and their
favourite dog Ranger, in joyous spirits.
It was a bright sunny morning and very warm,
and the road was very dusty, so that, happy as
they were, they could not help feeling tired
before half the walk was over; and when they
came in sight of Farmer Dale's, they wished
"this was grandpapa's," and sat down by the
gate, thinking it would be very nice if they
might go by the fields instead of the dusty road.
At this moment they heard the sound of wheels,
and horses' feet coming tramp, tramp behind
the hedge, and, looking through the gate, they
saw Farmer Dale's horse and wagon with Charley
the carter walking by the side.
"Ah, Charley!" cried little Willie, "where
are you going ?"
"To Squire Wakefield's," answered he, "to
cart his hay."
"Then we shall see you again presently, for
we are going to grandpapa's too," said Willie.
"Wo! Smiler," said Charley, and the horse
Charley began to open the gate, then touched
his hat, and asked Mrs. Grey if she would please
to walk in and go through the fields. She was
very much obliged to him, and the children were
delighted to get on the grass. They ran along
by the side of the cart, looking at the great
horse as he went on so strongly, and as if he did
not feel the weight of the cart in the least.
"What is all that wood for, that you have in
the wagon ?" asked Alice.
"That is to lay under the hay-stack. The
hay is laid on wood, not on the damp ground,
you see, Miss. If it was not for the wood, you
and Master Willie might have got into the cart
and had a ride, but you might get hurt some
way if it shook about."
Thank you, Charley; I should have liked it
very much," said she.
"Wo! Smiler," said Charley again, and again
"You could both ride on Smiler's back, if
you're not afraid," said Charley.
"May we, mamma ?" cried Alice. I should
like it very much, only it looks so high up."
"Suppose we should tumble off," said little
Willie, rather doubtfully.
Their mamma was a little afraid at first too,
but Charley assured her he would take great
care of the young gentleman and lady; and
presently Willie felt quite courageous, and was
lifted up and seated very firmly, and took fast
hold of the collar. Then Charley lifted up
Alice, and she put her arm round Willie's waist.
Then Ranger began to bark and leap up, as if
he wanted to have a ride too.
Stay by us, mamma," cried Willie. What
a height we are from the ground!"
"Oh yes, stay by us," said Alice, who could
not help feeling a little frightened too.
"I will stay by you," said their mamma; "sit
firm, and you are in no danger."
"Now hold fast," cried Charley. "Gee wot!
Smiler !" and away went Smiler, tramp, tramp
again. Very soon they got used to the motion,
and laughed and chatted, and enjoyed it very
much. Ranger went on, jumping and barking
all the way; but Smiler did not mind: he never
stopped. It was all their mamma could do to
keep up with them.
Open the gate. Look where we are," cried
Willie, when they stopped at their grandpapa's
field, and smelled the sweet new hay. The gate
was thrown open, and in they went in triumph,
and were soon surrounded by a whole troop of
merry people, with hay-forks and rakes in their
hands, and lifted down and kissed and welcomed
There were Aunt Lucy, and Aunt Emily, and
Uncle John, and there were their little cousins
Mary and Janey, with their elder brother Ro-
bert, and their friends Herbert and Meggy, with
their papa and mamma. And there were Tho-
mas, the gardener, and two hay-makers, whose
names were Joe and Roger, and Emma, the
cook, and Harriet, the housemaid. All were in
the field, hard at work, spreading the large hay-
cocks into long ridges ready to cart.
Willie and Alice were first taken to the sum-
mer-house, in one corner of the field, to have
some cake and milk, and then a little rake was
given to each, and they went hard to work rak-
ing the hay like the rest.
The wagon was standing behind the summer-
house, by the place where the stack was to be
made, and Thomas was busy unloading it, and
laying the wood in a proper form, ready to lay
GRANDPAPA 1S AY-FIELD.
the hay on. This was soon done, and he got
into the wagon himself, fork in hand.
"Who will have a ride down the field?" he
I will,-I will,-let me,-take me up," cried
many voices, and in two minutes every child
there was seated in the wagon, and away went
Smiler with them down the field, and Charley
led him to the end of one of the long ridges of
Now out they must all come, as fast as they
got in. Uncle John held out his hands, and
jumped them down one after another, on to the
ridge of hay, and ended by burying them under
it. But Thomas called out, that it was not time
to play yet, so they all scrambled up as well as
they could for laughing. Joe and Roger, Uncle
John and Robert, forked up the hay and threw
it into the wagon, and Thomas, standing up in
it, packed it all even; all the rest raked after
them, collecting what was scattered, and Charley
led Smiler on and on, as they cleared. Soon
there was a good heaped load.
"Who will have a ride on the top of the
hay?" cries Thomas.
All the children were ready. So now Uncle
John must lift them up, and, as Thomas received
them, and seated them on the dry loose hay,
they sunk in it very comfortably, and their faces
peeped out like the young birds in a nest.
When Smiler moved on they set up a shout,
and grandpapa himself came out to see what
"Here we are Ah, grandpapa, come up
too!" cried Alice and Willie; but he laughed,
and said, "that would never do for him."
Now they had to be handed down again,
sliding and jumping as well as they could; for
the wagon was led to the right place, and the
hay was to be forked out and laid in order on
the wood. Joe and Roger built the stack;
Thomas, Robert, and Uncle John threw the hay
out of the wagon; the rest had time to rest or
play; only a few had to rake what was scattered
by the wind or dropped, and Thomas soon sent
them all to shake the rest of the cocks into
Now came a new visitor into the field: it was
Daisy, the cow. All the time the grass was
growing, she had been kept in the cow-house,
but now Aunt Lucy had determined she should
come and enjoy the pleasant air and grass once
more. Daisy was a pretty Guernsey cow, with
short horns, a small head, short legs, and was
prettily spotted white and light brown. She
was very gentle and tame, but she was young
and playful; so when she found herself once
more in her field, she set off, levelled her horns
at a large hay-cock, knocked it down, and ran
round by the hedge with a great bunch of hay
on her head. Everybody laughed, and grand-
papa declared it was exactly as if she had said
to the hay-cock, "So it was for you I was kept
shut up all this time! down with you!"
"You ought to have jumped over it, Daisy!"
cried Uncle John.
"Uncle John must jump over a hay-cock!"
Yes, yes, Uncle John. Do jump over a hay-
cock," exclaimed several voices.
"To be sure I will," he said; so he laid down
his fork, took off his straw hat, chose out one of
the tallest hay-cocks, went back several paces,
took a run, then a jump; but, high as he jumped,
it was not high enough. His foot came thump
against the top of the hay-cock, knocked it off,
and he tumbled down on the other side, where
he was buried under the rest of it by the children
the next minute.
There is no saying when he would have got
out; but the sight of the empty wagon, going
down the field, made them all eager for a ride,
and Uncle John must crawl out and help them
in, and then every one was hard at work again.
By-and-by it was dinner time. A cold dinner
was ready for every one, and it was surprising
what appetites they had; but the children could
not sit long,-they must be off to the field again;
and as the men were not ready to go on yet,
they began to play. They pelted each other
with hay. Little Willie was seized as he was
running along with a load on his head to throw
at some one, laid on a hay-cock, and quite hid
under a heap; then out he got, and Alice was
smothered, then all the others.
"Would anybody like a swing ?" cried Robert,
who had just come out.
Everybody liked swinging, so to the swing all
went. It was hung to one of the arms of a
large elm tree. Alice was put in first, and
Robert swung her so high that she touched the
green leaves and branches with her feet, and she
enjoyed it very much; but she soon called out
to him to stop, that some one else might come
in. Herbert was such a bold swinger that he
liked to stand up on the board, and Janey stood
up with him; they held tight, and went up as
high as Alice had done. Then little Willie and
Mary were put in side by side, and swung
together, and then Meggy had her turn; and
while she was scudding through the air, first
touching the high branches with her head, then
with the tips of her toes, Thomas called all to
GRANDPAPA'S HAY-FIELD. 85
Smiler had been taken out of the shafts and
allowed to feed where he liked, but now he must
be fastened in again; and as Charley had gone
a message, Joe undertook to do it, and was a
long time over it, for he did not understand how
to fasten the buckles; however, it was done at
last, and he led the wagon while the others
loaded, and then the children were mounted on
the top as before. They had got to the lower
part of the field, and Smiler had to drag them up
a steep bank. As he was straining up, and had
nearly reached the top, one of the buckles, not
properly fastened by Joe, gave way. Up went
the shafts, down went the back of the wagon,
and out fell all the hay and all the children
with it on the grass. Smiler walked off quietly,
and began to eat grass very contentedly; grand-
papa, uncle, aunts, papas, and mammas rushed to
the spot in alarm. Nothing was to be seen of the
children, nothing but a great heap of hay; but
the hay began to shake, and out came a head,
then a foot, then a hand, then several heads,
feet, and hands; then some were able to laugh,
others to cry, and others to answer the anxious
question, "Are you hurt ?"
No one was hurt. Alice's bonnet was beat
flat over her eyes, but her mamma soon straight-
ened it; Meggy's frock was torn, but Aunt
Emily brought out a needle and thread and
mended it; Herbert lost a top out of his pocket,
and Willie could not find his cap till the hay
was nearly all flung into the wagon again; but
when they had shaken themselves well, and
had got the hay out of their mouths and hair
as well as they could, it was declared that no
harm was done. It happened, however, that
though Charley now fastened the harness right
and tight, no one asked to get up on the next
load or two; they preferred rather to run by
The sun began to go round towards the west,
and the trees to cast a longer shadow, and the
field was nearly cleared; but now tea was ready
under a spreading beech. Such a great tea-pot,
such an immense jug of milk, such platefuls of
cake and bread and butter, such piled heaps of
strawberries and cherries were there for them,
as they had never seen before; and much they
"What are those bright ribbons for, Aunt
Lucy?" cried somebody. And, all leaving the
remains of the feast, found the grass covered
with bits of ribbon of every colour.
"Where are your rakes ?" said she. "Choose
your colours. All of you must have a streamer
on your rakes when the last load goes to be
Now there was a great bustle. One would
have green, another blue, another pink, another
white. Then the forks were dressed; and then,
for papas and mammas, who had not been at
work, long sticks were cut, and ribbons tied on
them. Smiler must be dressed now. He had
bunches of green leaves at each ear; and, as
ribbon failed, long strips of bright-coloured calico
were torn up and tied about his mane, tail, and
harness. Ranger was caught, and had a fine
collar of blue and red, with a large bow put on,
and Herbert's little dog Ponto was made splen-
did, by tying bright strips to his long white hair
all over him.
The carting was going on, and rakers were
soon called for. The field was cleared; the
wagon was about half full, and it was the last
All must mount now, rakes and forks in
GRANDPAPA'S HAY FIELD. 89
hand. Not only children,-grandpapa was in,
now papa, now mamma, now Aunt Lucy, now
Aunt Emily, and Uncle John, and Emma, and
Harriet. All were in. Charley walked at the
head, a long red streamer on his whip. Joe
and Roger waited on the stack, streamers on
"Now hold up your rakes and forks, and
shout for the last load," cries Thomas. He was
obeyed; there was a famous shout.
They stopped at the stack. "Master must
please to get up on the stack, and Joe and
Roger must come down."
Grandpapa mounted on the stack; all the rest
stood up in the wagon.
"Three cheers for Squire Wakefield! whose
hay we have got in this day," cried Thomas.
There were three capital cheers, and then Mr.
Wakefield, thanking them, told them supper
would be ready in half an hour, and invited
them all to partake.
It was a lovely evening, and the long supper
table was laid in the garden, on the lawn. The
children helped to lay the tables, and were
ready and delighted to wait on the company at
supper. There was abundance of everything,
and the tables looked beautiful when the high
vases of flowers and heaped dishes of fruit were
placed among the substantial dishes.
The hay was stacked, Smiler put up in the
stable, and Thomas and his two assistants, with
Charley, had come into the garden; and now
the guests began to arrive,-Thomas's wife and
three children, Emma's brother and sister, Har-
riet's father and sister, Charley's old mother,
Joe's wife, Roger's mother and sister. There
were seats for everybody. Mr. Wakefield and
Aunt Lucy took the two ends of the table, and
GRANDPAPA'S HAY-FIELD. 91
the children waited on all. Everything was so
well arranged that they found it quite easy, and
when they had no more to do they formed rings
on the grass, and danced to their own voices.
Then songs were sung, and the children some-
times joined in chorus, and pleasant stories were
told, and they stopped their dance to listen.
The sun had gone down in a golden sky, and
the moon was up when the happy party sepa-
rated. The children stayed all night; every
sofa and bed was full, and the moon that lighted
the other guests to their several homes, peeped
in at the windows of Mr. Wakefield's cottage on
many little eyelids fast closed in sleep after a
ROSE AND HARRY.
ON the sloping side of a green hill there was
a pretty cottage, with a little garden round it,
and a white gate that led into a wood of firs and
larches, mixed with a few birch trees, that sent
out a delicious odour after a shower of rain when
the sun came out, and the green leaves glistened
in the light. It was such a solitary place that
this cottage would have been lonely, but that
near it there was a farm-house, and the sheep be-
longing to the farmer used to crop the grass on
the hill, and often come close up to the gate; and
he had cows in the meadows below, and corn-
fields at a little distance, and fine strong horses
ROSE AND HARRY.
for his ploughs and wagons, and a pigeon-house
on the roof of his barn.
In the cottage there lived a little girl and boy
called Rose and Harry, with their mamma.
Their papa died when they were too young to
remember him, and their mamma seemed to
have no happiness but in teaching them, walk-
ing about the beautiful country with them, giv-
ing them pleasure, and trying to make them as
good as she told them their dear papa was.
They were very happy children, for they were
always with their mamma, whom they loved so
much. When they awoke in the morning they
were sure to see her near their little beds. She
bathed and dressed them with her own hands.
Her voice led their morning prayer. She sat
on the hill while they ran and jumped in the
fresh sweet air. They sat at the same round
table at breakfast with her, and then went with
her to see what Mary the maid was doing, to
help to give out what was wanted from the
;tore-room, and to see what vegetables were
ready to cut in the garden. Then they did their
lessons, read to her, wrote, and did sums; and
when work was over they played till she called
them to dinner, when they had a great many
things to talk over with her. Then, after din-
ner she took them long walks into beautiful
places, through woods and green fields, and up
hills, where they saw lovely views, and down
into deep valleys by the side of clear streams;
and when evening came they went home to tea.
In summer evenings, when they came in sight
of their peaceful home it was still quite light,
and the sun was making the windows glitter
through the roses that grew round them; but in
spring and autumn it was often nearly dark;-the
stars were coming out, and the bright light of
ROSE AND HARRY.
the nice warm fire in their sitting-room shone
out pleasantly in the cold air. In winter their
walk ended earlier, and they had to run to keep
out the frost, or to skip along over the snow.
But whether it was warm or cold, light or dark,
it was always happy to them. They thought
that they liked better than anything in all their
pleasant lives the time when they sat down to
tea, sometimes by the open window, sometimes
by the cheerful fire; and then when the table
was cleared, and their mamma brought out her
work, and told them stories, or taught Rose to
hem and Harry to draw, how happy they were!
The only thing that seemed sad to them was
when bedtime came; but still, the moment their
mamma said; "It is time to go to bed," they
put everything away, and followed her up stairs;
for whatever she wished them to do they did
instantly. They loved her so much, that to
please and obey her was their delight.
It was early in the month of February, when,
one day, they were agreeably surprised by re-
ceiving a present from the farmer's wife of a cock
and five hens. There was a yard, with an
empty hen-house at the back of their cottage,
and their mamma had often said she should like
to keep some fowls to lay fresh eggs for them;
so this was a very kind present. Every morning
and afternoon they used to go and feed their new
pets, and to look for eggs in the nests of the hen-
house; and they almost always found three or
four a day. They named the cock Emperor,
because he looked so grand and proud; the two
white hens they named Fairy and Lily, the
black one Jet, and the two speckled ones Browny
It happened that one day, when Rose and
Harry were at play in the garden, they could
see their mamma's face as she sat at work near
the window, and it seemed to Rose that her dear
ROSE AND HARRY.
mamma looked very pale and melancholy.
Rose left off laughing and talking, and was
silent so long, that Harry asked what she was
I wish," said she, "that we could do anything
Harry looked as if he did not quite understand
Mamma is always working for us, and doing
things to make us happy," she continued, "and
I wish we could do anything to help her."
"So do I, Rose. What can we do ?"
This led to a great deal of talk between them;
and at last they ran to their mamma to ask her
to let them try to be useful to her. She smiled,
kissed them, and said, It helped her best to see
them try to be good;" but she added, "As you
grow older you shall both learn more and more
to be useful."
"Let us begin now, mamma," said Rose.
"I think that I can find something for you to
do for me," answered her mamma, that will be
very useful, if I can trust you. It will require
care and attention."
Both declared they would be careful and at-
"I know by several signs," continued their
mamma, "that the little white hen you call
Fairy wants to sit."
"Does she, and will she have some chickens?"
"I hope so; but sitting hens require great at-
tention when there is no separate place for them
to make their nest in. The other hens try to
drive them off, to lay their eggs in the nest;
then they fight, and perhaps break the eggs. I
shall, therefore, have a door made to shut in
Fairy when she has got her eggs under her."
"But how is she to get her food ?"
ROSE AND HARRY.
"That is what I am going to trust you with.
She must be allowed once a day to come off her
eggs, to take her food and have a little exercise.
Some one must open her door every morning.
She will know how long she may safely stay
out. When she goes back she must be shut in
"Then may we open her door, feed her, and
wait till she is ready to go back ?" said Rose.
"And shut her in again when she goes back?
How I shall like doing it," said Harry.
It will be very useful to me if you will take
this charge," said their mamma. "Mary has
not time for it, and it would be troublesome to
"We will be very attentive. It will be so
very nice!" said Rose.
"But remember," added her mamma, "that
Fairy must sit three whole weeks; and that, if
you forget to let her out even one day, she will
suffer much, and be very hungry and thirsty;
while, if you neglect to let her in again, the
eggs will get cold and we shall have no chickens.
May I trust you ?"
Both declared that she might; that they
would never forget. Accordingly the carpenter
put a little wooden door before one of the nests,
with holes in it for air. Then Rose and Harry
went with their mamma to the store-room, and
she took thirteen eggs in a little basket. Fairy
was already in the nest, though she had no eggs;
but Harry took her off and held her while his
mamma put clean straw and a little hay nicely
in. Rose laid all the eggs carefully among it,
and then Fairy was allowed to go in. She
began to arrange the eggs with her feet and
beak, till they were laid as she liked, then she
spread her wings out and settled down upon
ROSE AND HARRY. 101
them. The door was now closed and she was
Next morning before breakfast, Rose and
Harry went to the hen-house with a saucer of
water, and some barley, which they spread on
the floor. When they opened Fairy's door and
called her she got off, picked it up, and drank
some water. They felt the warm eggs, and then
shut the door, lest another hen should get in;
but they waited in the yard while Fairy wan-
dered about, till, in less than ten minutes, she
came to her nest again, when they opened her
door, let her in, and then shut her up safely.
They went on every morning in the same way.
Sometimes it seemed to them that she stayed out
very long, but they always found she came back
before the eggs had lost their warmth; however,
to pass the time, they went into the garden and
played there, going back every few minutes to