• TABLE OF CONTENTS
HIDE
 Front Cover
 Front Matter
 Frontispiece
 Title Page
 Table of Contents
 Introduction
 Little Amy's birthday
 The adventure of the kite
 The elves
 An Autumn flood
 The pleasures of Autumn
 Advertising
 Back Matter
 Back Cover
 Spine






Group Title: Little Amy's birthday, and other tales /
Title: Little Amy's birthday, and other tales
CITATION THUMBNAILS PAGE TURNER PAGE IMAGE ZOOMABLE
Full Citation
STANDARD VIEW MARC VIEW
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00004071/00001
 Material Information
Title: Little Amy's birthday, and other tales
Physical Description: vii, 120, 32 p., 1 leaf of plates : col. ill. ; 15 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Myrtle, Harriet, 1811?-1876 ( Author, Primary )
Harrild, Thomas ( Printer )
Frederick Warne and Co ( Publisher )
Publisher: Frederick Warne and Co.
Place of Publication: London
Manufacturer: Harrild
Publication Date: 1865
Copyright Date: 1865
 Subjects
Subject: Children's stories   ( lcsh )
Publishers' catalogues -- 1865   ( rbgenr )
Children's stories -- 1865   ( lcsh )
Bldn -- 1865
Genre: Publishers' catalogues   ( rbgenr )
Children's stories   ( lcsh )
novel   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage: England -- London
 Notes
Statement of Responsibility: by Mrs. Harriet Myrtle ; with coloured frontispiece.
General Note: Publisher's catalogue follows text.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00004071
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: notis - ALH5224
oclc - 48656277
alephbibnum - 002234788

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front Cover 1
        Front Cover 2
    Front Matter
        Front Matter 1
        Front Matter 2
        Front Matter 3
    Frontispiece
        Frontispiece
    Title Page
        Page i
        Page ii
    Table of Contents
        Page iii
        Page iv
    Introduction
        Page v
        Page vi
        Page vii
        Page viii
    Little Amy's birthday
        Page 1
        Page 2
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
        Page 29
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
        Page 34
    The adventure of the kite
        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 39
        Page 40
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
        Page 46
        Page 47
    The elves
        Page 48
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 55
        Page 56
        Page 57
        Page 58
        Page 59
        Page 60
        Page 61
        Page 62
        Page 63
        Page 64
        Page 65
        Page 66
        Page 67
        Page 68
        Page 69
        Page 70
        Page 71
        Page 72
        Page 73
        Page 74
        Page 75
    An Autumn flood
        Page 76
        Page 77
        Page 78
        Page 79
        Page 80
        Page 81
        Page 82
        Page 83
        Page 84
        Page 85
        Page 86
        Page 87
        Page 88
        Page 89
        Page 90
        Page 91
        Page 92
        Page 93
        Page 94
        Page 95
        Page 96
        Page 97
        Page 98
        Page 99
        Page 100
        Page 101
    The pleasures of Autumn
        Page 102
        Page 103
        Page 104
        Page 105
        Page 106
        Page 107
        Page 108
        Page 109
        Page 110
        Page 111
        Page 112
        Page 113
        Page 114
        Page 115
        Page 116
        Page 117
        Page 118
        Page 119
        Page 120
    Advertising
        Page 121
        Page 122
        Page 123
        Page 124
        Page 125
        Page 126
        Page 127
        Page 128
        Page 129
        Page 130
        Page 131
        Page 132
        Page 133
        Page 134
        Page 135
        Page 136
        Page 137
        Page 138
        Page 139
        Page 140
        Page 141
        Page 142
        Page 143
        Page 144
        Page 145
        Page 146
        Page 147
        Page 148
        Page 149
        Page 150
        Page 151
        Page 152
    Back Matter
        Page 153
        Page 154
    Back Cover
        Page 155
        Page 156
    Spine
        Page 157
Full Text























































The Baldwin Library
University
Flmida

























































ro'01






t, rm



ER R --- 5







LITTLE



AMY'S BIRTHDAY,



AND OTHER TALES.




BY MRS. HARRIET MYRTLE,
AUTHOR OF "THE STORY BOOK OF COUNTRY SCENES," "THE
PET LAMB," ETC.





WITH COLOURED FRONTISPIECE,





LONDON:
FREDERICK WARNE AND CO.,
BEDFORD STREET, COVENT GARDEN.
1865.

































IT,
LON" T0DOY.I


















CONTENTS.


INTRODUCTION

LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY

Tns ADVENTURE OF THE KITE

THE ELVas

AN AvTVUM FLOOD

THE PLEASURES OB AUTUMN


PAGE


1

35

48

76

102













INTRODUCTION.


EAR the cottage where little Mary
'^y lived, there was a mountain-ash,
that was covered in autumn with clusters
of bright red berries; and, perched on a
branch of this tree there often sat a
robin, with a breast nearly as bright as
the berries, and he sang a sweet, joyous,
clear song, when all the other birds were
silent. Over head, the sky was very
blue, with a few heavy white clouds here
and there. The air was cool and very





INTRODUCTION.


fresh, and it was pleasant to take long
walks in the fields.
The evenings were cold. It would
not do now to stay out at play till bed-
time; but yet it was not dark enough to
have candles and sit down to read or
work. This reminded Mary of the long
spring evenings, and of the stories her
mamma used to tell to her and Thomas
and Willie then; and she asked to have
some more stories told now.
And, mamma," she said, will you
let the first story be that pretty one you
told me in the wood, on my birthday ? for
I want Willie to hear it."
Her mamma agreed in a moment, and
they were soon all seated: Willie on her
knee, and Mary on a stool at her feet.




INTRODUCTION N.


"I wish Thomas was here," said
Mary.
So do I, very much," said Willie.
I shall try to recollect every word
of the story, and write it all down, and
send it to him at school," said Mary.
Her mamma thought this a very
good idea, and promised to give her the
paper for it the next day; and then she
began the story.





'F~~~










LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY,
AND OTHER TALES.


LITTLE MY'S BIRTHDAY.
0--oo
HEN we were in the woods in
summer, said Mary's mamma,
"I did not tell you a story of summer
days and green trees, because you had
only to look round you, and the trees
themselves, in their whispering way,
could tell you all manner of things; but
I told you about Autumn and the Sea."
Here a little scratch and whine were
heard outside the door.




2 LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


Oh,just wait one moment, mamma,"
cried Mary, running to open the door.
"Come in, Bouncer, poor fellow! and
lie down on the rug and go to sleep, as
you always used to do."
Bouncer walked in, wagging his tail,
went straight to the rug, threw himself
down on his side, stretched out his legs,
shut his eyes, gave a sigh, wagged his tail
again slowly, and with a bump on the
floor at each wag, and then went to sleep.
Meanwhile the story went on again.
There was a pretty little girl called
Amy Bright, who lived in a village built
in a cleft of the rocks near the sea. Her
father, John Bright, was a fisherman, and
her mother was very pretty and very
merry, and they were as happy as any





LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


family in all the village. Their cottage
was so neat, and their garden so gay,
that no one ever passed without admiring
them; but very few people did pass, it
was so quiet and retired there. The
view from their window was most beauti-
ful. They could look miles and miles
out over the blue sea, and it was lovely
on bright sunny mornings, or on fine
evenings when the sun was setting, or
on moonlight nights. The only time
they did not like to look at it was when
it was stormy, and John was out with
his boat. But he had always come back
safely to them, and then it was great joy
to welcome him home. Mrs. Bright
d. 'z.,- ran down to the pier to see him
come ashore, and help him with what he





4 LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


had to do, while Amy got his breakfast,
if it was early in the morning, and he
had beeon out all night, or his dinner or
supper, if it was a different hour; for
though she was only seven years old, she
could manage to prepare everything so
cleverly that her mother could quickly
finish it up when she came in. John
Bright's boat was called the "Fairy,"
and he took great pride in it.
Thc:ir most frequent visitor was
Farmer Bolt, whose farm was about a
mile off. He used to ride over his
fields on a great strong pony, and always
stopped at their gate to have a chat
with little Amy, or to bring her some
cherries or apples, or some little present or
other. Amy 1 ad bright blue eyes, curly






LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


light brown hair, a very white skin, and
cheeks as red as roses; and he used to
say that the sight of her laughing.face
did him as much good as the fresh sea air.
This summer, when Amy was seven
years old, her mother had a very bad
illness, and then Farmer Bolt brought
his sister, who was a kind, cheerful old
lady, to see her, and Mrs. Bolt, as she
was called, used to help Amy to nurse
her when John Bright was out with his
boat. She and Amy became- great
friends, and when Mrs. Bright got better,
they made up a little plan between them,
of something that was to be done at the
farmer's harvest-home.
"What is a harvest-home?" asked
little Willie.





6 LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


Mary told him it was the time when
the farmer's corn was all brought in
off the fields, and stacked up in the
farm-yard.
This plan that they made up was,
that the farmer should give a dance in
his barn to all his farm-servants, and
their families and friends, and should
ask several of the families from the
village. Amy and her father and mother
must be there of course; and she was to
give the names of all the companions she
liked best in the village, that they might
be sure to be asked. 4
Amy gave plenty of names, for she
knew nearly all their neighbours; but
her favourite friends were Rose and
Peter Best, children of a gardener near




LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


the village. She always liked to play
with them, and they had many a run on
the sands, and scramble over the rocks
together; and they used to take her to
their father's garden sometimes, and
many of the gay flowers at John Bright's
cottage grew from roots and seeds they
gave to Amy. They had helped her to
make a grotto also, in one corner of the
cottage garden, and she was now collect-
ing a whole bag-full of shells for them
to make one like it.
"Were they older than Amy ?"
asked IMiry.
"Yes," replied her mamma; "Rose
was eight and Peter ten, and he already
began to work with his father."
The farmer was very kind and good-





8 LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


natured, and said he would give the
dance and a supper too; so all the
party was asked, and Rose and Peter,
and their father and mother, and several
others among the fishermen of the
village; and harvest-home was looked
for with great impatience. But un-
luckily as the time drew near, the farmer
found that he must leave home on busi-
ness the very moment he had seen his
corn safe in, and that the party must be
put off. Another day was now to be
fixed, and he was determined this should
be his little favourite's birthday. The
twenty-third of September is little Amy's
birthday," said he. "That shall be the
day; and you must buy her the prettiest
frock you can choose, sister, and she





LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


must wear it. The colour must be blue
to match her bright eyes, and it will do
my heart good to see her dancing and
skipping away in the barn. The twenty-
third of September was therefore fixed
for the dance, when little Amy would be
eight years old.
Two evenings before this long-
looked-for dance and supper, Amy's
father went out in his boat. The
weather was fine, and he expected to be
back in time to have a good rest, and
then be ready to go to the farm. Next
morning the sky was bright and clear,
and Amy and her mother were busy
cleaning up the cottage, and making
ready for him at night. They did not
expect him till rather late. While they





10 LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


were working away, the farmer came
riding up on his pony, gave a little parcel
to Amy with a kind nod, and then rode
away. She opened it, and there she
found the prettiest bright blue frock, and
a little note from Mrs. Bolt to tell her it
was a birthday present, and to be worn
the next day.
"Oh, let me try it on directly!"
cried Amy.
Accordingly they tried it on, and it
fitted exactly, and Amy danced about
the garden with it on, till her mother
called her in and took it off, and folded
it up carefully lest it should be torn or
soiled. Just as she was putting it away,
Peter and Rose came to the gate, and
then it had to be taken out again and





LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


shown to them. They thought it very
pretty, and Rose said it was just the very
colour for Amy.
"And the bunch of white Autumn
roses will look beautiful with it, won't
they, Peter ?" she whispered to him.
"Hush !" said Peter; don't tell her
before I bring them."
Have you heard that there are to
be two fiddles and a harp ?" said he.
"Oh, beautiful!!" cried Amy and her
mother both at once; and Amy began to
skip and jump about.
John will dance his hornpipe before
the night is over, I'm very sure," said
Mrs. Bright. "And if they sing songs
after supper, I know who has the best
voice in the village."





12 LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


"Father, you mean," said little
Amy.
"But do you know what a great
plum cake Mrs. Bolt has made ?" asked
Rose.
Amy gave another jump, and clapped
her hands.
And there will be such a number of
things for supper," said Peter. "All
our best apples and pears are gone there,
and Farmer Bolt's great walnut-tree was
thrashed yesterday, so there will be plenty
of walnuts."
How nice walnuts are !" cried Amy,
with another jump.
Rose now said she should like to see
Amy in her new frock, so it was put on
again, and then they all danced round in





LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


a ring, Mrs. Bright and all, for she was
quite as merry as Amy.
Well, now we must go," said Peter,
"so good-bye till to-morrow."
They went away, and Amy ran in and
took off her frock, folded it up, and
brought it out to her mother to give it to
her again to put away.
But her mother did not answer.
She was leaning on the gate, looking at
a heavy black cloud just rising from the
sea. Amy looked up in her face, and
saw her look so pale, and her eyes so
fixed that she did not like to speak again.
The little girl pressed close to her, and
took hold of her hand.
The black cloud spread, and more
.came, and it soon looked all black where





14 LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


it had been so clear and blue before.
Then it began to thunder, and a dreadful
storm of wind blew; the waves rose and
dashed on the shore, and some heavy
drops of rain fell.
Come in, mother dear," said little
Amy.
She was thinking of the 'Fairy,'
and of John Bright," said Willie, "and
was afraid the great waves would make
the Fairy' sink."
"Yes-and she was still weak from
her illness, and her head began to ache,
and she could scarcely stand."
"But he was not drowned ?" cried
Willie, with the tears in his eyes.
"You shall hear-wait a little while,"
said Mary.





LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


Amy led her mother into the cottage,
and tried to comfort her, but she did not
seem able to listen. The storm lasted
several hours, and they both sat all the
time looking over the sea from the
window, for Mrs. Bright could not bear
Amy to move from her side; and she
was a good obedient little girl, and
always did what her mother wished.
When the thunder was over, she asked
to run down to the pier, and tell the men
who were about that she hoped they
would send her mother word the moment
the "Fairy" came in sight.
"Oh yes! dear child," said her
mother, "go and say so."
Little Amy, therefore, took her cloak
and ran off to the pier, and the sailors




16 LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


that were about patted her on the head,
and promised to lose no time in sending
up the news. When she went back her
mother looked so ill that Amy would not
let her move about, but finished cleaning
up the cottage, and then got supper
ready, and made up a bright fire, all by
herself, and very nicely. But the hours
passed on, and no father came home.
At last her-eyes grew heavy, and she fell
asleep on her mother's lap.
Little Amy awoke on her birthday,
and looked round. She was undressed
and in bed, though she could not re-
member how she came there. She crept
softly out of her little room into her
mother's; but she was not there, and no
one had been in bed all night. She felt





LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


frightened, and opened the cottage door,
and went out into the garden. It was a
lovely morning; the sky was clear blue;
not a breath of wind could be felt, and
the sea was quite smooth. She looked
round, and then she saw her mother
leaning over the gate just as she had
done when the storm began.
Amy ran to her; but she looked very
ill, and seemed hardly to know where
she was or who was by her. The little
girl began to cry, but soon dried her
eyes, and ran in and dressed herself very
quickly. She saw that her father had
never come home, and this made her cry
again, but she tried to leave off. Then
she lighted the fire, and set the break-
fast, and again went to her mother, and
a





18 LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


this time managed to lead her in; but
she only sat down, and would not eat or
speak. Amy climbed up on her lap,
kissed her again and again, and wiped
away the tears that began to run down
her cheeks with the little clean pinafore
she had on; and then at last poor Mrs.
Bright looked at her, and cried very
Bitterly, and kissed her, and listened to
her when she tried to comfort her.
"Now, mother dear, get into bed,
and try to go to sleep," said little Amy.
Her mother let her help her into bed,
and then let her go for the doctor. He
was a kind man, and came soon, and
gave Amy some medicine for her, and
told her to keep everything quiet. So
Amy sat by the bedside watching her





LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


mother, who soon fell asleep; for the
medicine she had taken was a draught
to make her sleep.
Presently the sound of a horse trot-
ting up to the gate was heard. Amy
crept on tip-toe to the door, and there
she saw Farmer Bolt on his pony.
Many happy returns of your birth-
day, little dear," said he, in his kind,
cheerful voice.
Amy put her finger to her lips, to
show him that she wished to be very
quiet. Father has never come home,"
said she, in a half whisper; and my
mother is very ill, and asleep."
The farmer got off his pony, tied it
to the railing, and walked into the gar-
den, and then into the cottage, without




20 LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


speaking or making any noise. Then he
took Amy on his knee, and stroked her
pretty curly hair. The little girl's heart
was full, and at this kindness and gen-
tleness shown to her, the tears began to
run down her cheeks.
Have you had any breakfast, dear
child ?" asked the farmer.
Amy shook her head; she was not
able to speak.
Farmer Bolt put her down; went to
the fire, stirred it, warmed up the coffee
that Amy had prepared for her mother,
and poured it out; cut a good slice of
bread, and then taking Amy on his knee
again, said, "Now, take some breakfast,
little dear. Your father will come home
safe, when the wind gets up a little, by





LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


and by. There is no wind to bring him
now. That's right-drink it up. Now
dry your eyes; and your mother will get
quite well, you know, when he comes,
and we shall all have a merry evening.
That's right: there's a bright smile
again. Now good-bye."
He went out; but before mounting
his pony, asked if the doctor had been.
Then he rode away.
By this time all the village was astir,
and many of the neighbours came with
kind offers of help, and presently Mrs.
Bolt came to see if she could do any-
thing; but still Amy's mother was
asleep, and the little girl told them that
the doctor had said, Keep her very
quiet;" so she would not let any one





22 LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


come in, but watched by the bed all
alone, and listened in hopes that her
father would come.
About three o'clock the families and
children that were going to the dance
began to pass the gate in their holiday
dresses. Presently a well-known voice
called out, "Amy, are you ready ?"
It was Peter. He and Rose were
standing at the gate; and he held in his
hand a beautiful bunch of white Autumn
roses.
Amy went softly out at the door, and
when he saw her pale face, and her little
coloured pinafore instead of the blue
frock and merry smile he expected, he
dropped the flowers he had brought for
her, and they fell at her feet.





LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


She told her friends all that had hap-
pened, and they were very sorry, and
both said they would stay at home with
her; but she begged of them to go,
because they could not do any good to
her mother. Then Rose wanted to stay
in her place, and let her go with Peter;
but that she would not hear of. Their
father and mother came up to them just
at this minute, and when their mother
heard how it was, she said that Amy
must go; that she would herself watch
by Mrs. Bright, and that it would never
do for Amy to stay away, when it was
her birthday, and disappoint the farmer.
Peter and Rose both began to look
quite joyous at this, and Rose
said-





24 LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


"Come, Amy dear, let us put on the
pretty frock."
The two little girls went in together,
and Rose took up the frock which lay
still on the chair, just as Amy had put it
down when her mother first saw the
dark cloud that frightened her so much.
At sight of the frock Amy remembered
her mother dancing in the garden with
her and Peter, and then she stole softly
to the bed, and looked at her as she lay.
She went back to Rose and said, "I
cannot go, Rose. Don't ask me."
Rose saw that little Amy was in
earnest, so she went out to her father
and mother and Peter, and took them
away. They all walked off sorrowfully.
Amy went to the gate soon after, and





LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


saw them slowly walking along the path.
As she turned to go in, she saw Peter's
white roses on the ground, and she
picked them up and put them in
water.
All was now very quiet. But pre-
sently a sound was heard, which made
Amy raise her head and listen. It was
the sound of a pleasant light breeze of
wind, and she remembered the farmer's
words, "Your father will come home
safe, when the wind gets up a little, by
and by." Amy felt cheerful and happy.
She gave her mother a gentle kiss on the
forehead; then began to clear up the
cottage, trim the fire, and put everything
ready for supper, just as if she was
sure that her father would come home.





26 LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


She had hardly finished, and sat down
again by the bed, when her mother
awoke.
She kissed her dear little girl, who
had stayed away from all the pleasure
she had expected, to watch by her, and
then declared that she was better, and
would go out and look over the sea, in
hopes of seeing the Fairy coming in.
Amy helped her up, and as they passed
through the neat little kitchen, and her
mother saw the supper laid, she smiled
and pressed her little hand. They
walked to the edge of the cliff, but there
Mrs. Bright felt so weak that she was
obliged to sit down.
"Go, my child," she said, "round
the point, -where you pan see so much






LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


further, and look out, and come and tell
me if you see anything."
Amy did not like to leave her mother
alone, for she still looked very ill; but
she did as she was told. When she got
round the point, she saw a boy sitting on
the rocks; on coming near, she found it
was Peter.
Why, Peter dear," she cried, I
thought you were at the farm !"
Peter told her that he could not be
happy there, and had come to look out;
and he said she had better go back to
her mother, for he would run and tell
them the very moment that the Fairy"
came in sight. Amy only said, "Kind
Peter!" and then went back to her
mother.





28 LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


She sat down by her, and they re-
mained hand in hand for a long while.
It was a lovely evening. The sun set
over the sea, and the sea shone like gold
far out where it met the sky, and nearer
it looked bright green, and then deep
purple as it flowed in towards the yel-
low sands. Amy sat watching it; but
her mother hid her face in her red cloak,
and leaned her head on her hand. Both
were listening, and yet no sound had
come; but Amy felt the cool wind blow
off the sea, and this made her still feel
happy.
A shout from the rocks below made
them both start up in an instant.
"The 'Fairy!' the 'Fairy!' I see
her! She's coming round the point !"





LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


They heard these joyful words from
Peter's voice.
Mrs. Bright sank down again, but
raised both her hands and her eyes up-
wards, with tears running down her
cheeks, and a look of gratitude and love.
Amy ran off towards Peter, and soon
saw the Fairy with her own eyes, sail-
ing fast towaids the pier. She danced,
she clapped her hands, she called out to
her father as if he could hear her, and
then ran back to her mother. Peter
went with them to the pier, and waited
till he saw John Bright safe and well
step ashore, and saw the happy meeting,
and everybody welcoming him and help-
ing him, and then Peter ran off; for he
said to himself, "They would rather





30 LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


be alone at home, I know, and, be-
sides, I want to tell Rose the good
news."
It was a happy walk for Amy and
her father and mother, up to the village,
and a happy entrance into the pleasant,
neat cottage; and what joy for Amy to
help off the thick, high boots, and rough
jacket, and see her father's kind, sun-
burnt face once more, and her mother's
bright look come back again. They all
had plenty to say, but seemed hardly
able to speak much for joy.
As they sat down to supper, they
heard a voice at the gate cry-
"Welcome home, John Bright!
Where's little Amy ?"
Amy and her father went out to-




LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


gether, and there was Farmer Bolt on
his strong pony.
"I'm come to take Amy to the farm,"
said he. "She can sit before me here.
She shall have a dance in the barn on
her birthday after all."
Amy looked up at her father with a
merry laugh, and he caught her up in
his arms, and ran back with her into the
cottage. In three minutes he brought
her back, seated on his shoulder.' The
curly hair was nicely combed, the rosy
face washed, the bright blue frock put
on; and Peter's white roses were
placed in the band. Her father seated
her carefully before the farmer, who
put his arm round her, and held her
tight.




U2 LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


You will take care of her, I know,"
said John Bright.
That I will," answered the farmer;
"bless her little heart !"
"Yes, bless her !" said John Bright,
"she's her father's joy, and her mother's
too."
Away trotted the pony. They were
at the farm in ten minutes, and they
found all the party just going to supper.
Amy was received with joy by everybody,
and was soon seated between Peter and
Rose; and had some of the great plum-
cake, and apples, and pears, and walnuts,
that they had talked about. And then,
when all had had enough, a merry sound
was heard in the, barn. The two fiddles
and harp struck up again, and everybody




LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


rose from the table and went back to
their dancing. Amy skipped about so
lightly and joyously, that at the sight
the farmer could sit still no longer, and
went down a country-dance to the great
amusement of everybody.
About nine o'clock one of the great
waggons was brought out with plenty of
clean straw at the bottom, and four strong
horses in it, to take all the children and
their mothers and sisters home; and
it was a very merry party, as the
horses tramped along in the moon-
light.
When Amy was put down at the
cottage gate, her father ran out to bring
her in, and her mother pressed her in her
arms, and said, "My dear little com-




84 LITTLE AMY'S BIRTHDAY.


forter, how glad I am you have had some
pleasure on your birthday I"
As Amy laid her head on her pillow,
she felt that though her birthday had not
been so merry as she expected, and some
part of it had been very sad, yet that it
had been altogether the happiest day of
her life.
"I'm so glad," cried Willie, that
kind little Amy did go to the dance after
all."
Mary jumped up, and took hold of
both.his hands, and they both began to
dance with one accord; and her mamma,
seeing how merry they were, played to
them till bed-time, while they jumped and
skipped round and round the room.












THE ADVENTURE OF THE KITE.
--ow.0-

NE evening, when Mary, her
mamma, and Willie had all taken
their seats near the window, and the
story was about to begin, Mary reminded
her mamma of a merry adventure that
she had mentioned as having happened
when she and her brother and Master
White went out to fly their "new
Kite."
"Do, mamma, tell us about that,"
said Mary.
Her mamma said she would, and after




36 THE ADVENTURE OF THE KITE.


thinking for a few minutes, to recollect
all about it, she began.
One fine breezy morning in October,
Master White came suddenly to our
house, with his eyes looking so bright,
and his cheeks so red from running in
the fresh air, and quite out of breath
besides.
"What is the matter, James ?" we
all cried out. What a red face you've
got !"
Have I ?" said he; my nose is so
cold! I ran here as fast as I could,
there is such a beautiful breeze for a
Kite. Come, both of you, and let us fly
the Kite high up in the blue sky; come
as many of you as can, and this day you
shall see what a Kite can do !"





THE ADVENTURE OF THE KITE.


Up we all jumped, the Kite was
brought down, and away we all started
into the meadows. running nearly all the
way, and James White never ceasing to
talk of the wonderful things he intended
the Kite should this day perform.
We arrived in a large grassy meadow,
sloping down to a low hedge. Beyond
the hedge was a very large field, and
beyond that field another large field,
which had some high trees at the farthest
end. In the tops of these trees was a
rookery; we knew these trees very well,
because we often used to walk that way,
partly because it was a nice walk, and
partly because an old woman, whom we
were all very fond of, kept an apple and
gingerbread-nut stall under the largest






38 THE ADVENTURE OF THE KITE.

tree. However, as I said before, these
trees were a long way off-two whole
fields off-more, two whole fields and
all the meadow. At the top of the mea-
dow, near where we stood, there was
also a high tree, and at the foot of this
we laid down the Kite.
Oh, James," said my brother, "do
youthinkwe shallbe able tomake the Kite
fly as high as the tree we are under ?"
"As high?" said James White, six
times as high, at the very least."
He now carefully unfolded the tail
from the body of the Kite, being very
particular to undo all the tangles near
the tassel, which made quite a bunch;
but he brought it out perfectly. One
end of the ball of twine was now




THE ADVENTURE OF THE KITE. 39

attached to the body of the Kite. He
then raised it up with the right hand,
holding out the tail in three great fes-
toons with the left, and in this way
walked to and. fro very uprightly and
with a stately air, and turning his head
in various quarters, to observe the direc-
tion of the wind. Suddenly he dropt
the tail upon the ground, and lifting up
the Kite with his right hand in the air,
as high as he possibly could, off he ran
down the meadow slope as fast as his
legs could carry him, shouting all the
way, "Up, up, up rise, rise, rise! fly,
Kite, in the air!" He finished by
throwing the Kite up, continuing to run
with the'string in his hand, allowing it to
slip through his fingers as the Kite rose.





40 THE ADVENTURE OF THE KITE.

The breeze caught the Kite, and up it
went in fine style. It continued to rise
rapidly, and we ran to and fro under-
neath, shouting all the time, "Oh, well
done, James White, and well done,
Kite !"
By the excellent management of
James, the Kite rose and rose, till we
all said, Oh, how high! how wonder-
ful !" And then James White said he
was satisfied.
Now you are all to recollect that this
Kite was very large. In the story I
told you in Summer, where the making
of this Kite was described, you remem-
ber that it was said to be as tall as
James White himself, and of course very
much broader. The consequence was,





THE ADVENTURE OF THE KITE. 41

that this Kite was extremely strong.
So we all sat down on the grass to hold
the string, which James White said was
necessary, as the Kite struggled and
pulled so hard. It was now up quite as
high as the string would allow it to go.
But the wind seemed to be increasing,
and James White said he began to be
rather afraid that he must draw the
Kite downwards, for fear it should have
a quarrel with the wind up in the clouds,
and then some accident might happen.
We accordingly began to draw down the
Kite slowly, winding the string upon
the stick as it gradually descended.
But notwithstanding all this care, an
accident did happen after all.
Before the Kite was half-way down,




42 THE ADVENTURE OP THE KITE.

a strong wind suddenly caught it side-
ways, and the Kite made a long sweep
downwards like a swallow, rising up
again at some distance, swinging its tail
about in a most alarming manner.
" Bless my heart !" said James White.
Up we all jumped from the grass.
"Help me to hold her!" cried James
White; "how she struggles!" Again
came the wind, again the Kite made a
sweep down and rose up again as if in-
dignant-then shook her tail and wings
as if threatening to do some mischief-
then made a quick motion to the right
and a dance to the left-then made a very
graceful curtsey deep down, as though
she was very politely saluting the wind,
but suddenly rose up with a sharp jerk,





THE ADVENTURE OF THE KITE. 43

as though she had spitefully altered her
mind-and the next moment made a
dart first to the right and then to the
left, and continued to do this till James
White said he was sure something must
happen.
We all held the string as fast as we
could, and tried to pull down the Kite;
but it was impossible, for instead of
bringing her down, we were all three
dragged along down the meadow slope,
crying out, Somebody come and help
us somebody come and help us !" But
nobody else was near. In this manner
the Kite was pulling us along, the-string
cutting our hands, and running through
our fingers like fire, till at last. I was
obliged to let go, and being unable to




44 THE ADVENTURE OF THE KITE.

get out of the way, was knocked down,
and being also unable to roll myself out
of the way, my brother fell over me.
James White was thus left alone with
the Kite, and was dragged struggling
and hallooing down the meadow slope.
He was determined, however, not'to
let go-nothing could make him loose
the string-he was determined not to be
conquered; but before he had got to the
bottom of the slope, the string of the
Kite broke about half-way down, and up
sprang the Kite again towards the sky,
taking its course over the meadowtowards
the great field beyond. We all three
followed of course, as fast as we could,
staring up, and panting, and not know-
ing what to do. The Kite continued to





THE ADVENTURE OF THE KITE. 45

fly in rather an irregular manner over
the first great field. It then made a
pitch downwards, and several tosses up-
wards, and flew straight over the second
great field, in the direction of the high
trees. Oh, those trees! cried James
White, "it is flying towards the trees !"
He was right, the Kite did fly
directly towards the trees, as James
White said it would. Just as it arrived
nearly over those trees, it made a great
pitch downwards, right into the top of
the largest tree, and completely knocked
over one of the rooks' nests that was
built there. We came running up as
soon as we could, and then we saw that
it was the very tree, at the foot of
which was the stall of our dear old





46 THE ADVENTURE OF THE KITE.

woman, who sold apples and gingerbread-
nuts.
"MAake haste!" cried she--" the
Kite is safe among the boughs; I can
see its long tail hanging down. But do
look here! the Kite has made us a pre-
sent of five young rooks; two are flut-
tering among the golden pippins, and
three are hopping and gaping among the
gingerbread-nuts."
James White scarcely looked at the
rooks, he said he had more important
business to attend to. He took off his
jacket, and immediately began to climb
up the tree. In less than twenty
minutes he succeeded in bringing down
the Kite, with only two small rents
in 'its left shoulder, and the loss of one





THE ADVENTURE OF THE KITE. 47

wing, all of which he said he could easily
repair.
We took the five young rooks home
with us, and had great amusement in
rearing and feeding them, and as soon as
they were old enough, we took them out
into their native fields, and let them
fly directly under the tree where they
were born.











THE ELYES.


OOK, what a beautiful golden
mist there is all over the fields
and trees, cried Mary, one evening
in September, when the sun was set-
ting. "It reminds me of the story of
Bertha and the Bird, when the old
woman took her to the cottage.
Mamma, will you tell us that story
again ?"
"Would you not rather hear another
of the same kind ?" asked her mamma.
"Bertha and the Bird was altered for




THE ELVES.


you from a German story,* and I have
another which I think you will like even
more."
"Is it a fairy tale ?" asked Willie.
"Yes," replied Mary's mamma;
"and now come and sit by the window,
where we can see this lovely sun-set, and
I will tell it you."
There was a farm-house on a little
green height, enclosed by a pretty ring
of paling, which also enclosed a fruit
and flower-garden. A gay-looking village
stretched down the side of the hill, and
a large castle was opposite to it. The
whole village was decked with fruit-trees;
the ground was covered with herbs and
flowers; all the houses were clean and
The Fair-haired Eckbert." By Tieck.





THE ELVES.


cheerful. Green woods spread away
into the distance. Only on one side it
looked dismal. There was a brook with
a little wooden bridge across it, and on
the other bank a dell, thickly shaded by
dark, dingy fir-trees. Deep in this dell,
those who looked down, saw a hut, with
ruinous buildings about it. Smoke
seldom came out of the chimneys, and
very few people were ever seen about.
A few ragged, dirty women, carrying
dirty-looking little children, sometimes
moved under the trees. The villagers
said they were gipsies. Whoever they
were, they did not come out of their fir-
wood, nor mix with other people. Black
dogs ran up and down on the boundary,
and frightened visitors away; and all the




THE ELVES.


village children were taught never to
cross the brook, for fear of some harm
coming to them.
At the pleasant farm-house on the
height, lived a farmer and his wife, named
Martin and Mary, with one little girl
called Elfrida.
One evening Elfrida was playing on
the green with Andres, a little boy of
the village; it was warm, and they were
thirsty with running, and went to sit
near the house and eat some bright red
cherries for supper. When they had
finished, they began to run races, and
the little active Elfrida always got before
Andres.
Come, come," said he, let us try
a longer race, and then see who wins.





THE ELVES.


I will go this way round the hill, and you
shall go the other side near the brook,
and see which can get first to the pear-
tree that stands out there."
They set off. Presently Elfrida, as
she ran, came close to the bridge that led
across the brook. She felt a wish to
cross it, and to run through the fir-trees.
The way would not be longer than on the
side where she was.
Shall I ?" said she to herself. No,
it is too frightful !"
A little white dog was standing on
the other bank, barking with might and
main. Elfrida sprang back in fear.
Then she said to herself, "Fie, fie! I
will not be afraid !"
As she said so, the little dog no




THE ELVES.


longer looked frightful, but quite pretty.
It had a red collar round its neck, and a
glittering bell hanging to it, and this bell
sounded with the finest tinkle.
Well, I must risk it," cried the gay
courageous little Elfrida, and sprang
across the bridge, and ran forwards under
the fir-trees on the opposite bank.
Willie gave a sigh, and said "Oh !"
Mary looked eagerly at her mamma, as
if very anxious to know what would
happen.
The dog began to fawn on the little
girl; she walked forward, and found in
a moment that the dark fir-trees quite
hid her father's house, and all the village
from her view. But when she looked
round her, at the place into which she





THE ELVES.


had come, what was her surprise!
Instead of dismal trees, she saw a lovely
flower-garden. Tulips, roses, and lilies
were glowing in the light; blue and
gold-red butterflies were glancing among
the blossoms; bright birds were flying
about and singing; and children, all
dressed in white, with flowing hair and
brilliant eyes, were frolicking about, some
playing with lambs, some feeding the
birds, or gathering flowers, or weaving
them into wreaths. Trees loaded with
rich fruit bordered the garden, and vines,
covered with rich clusters of grapes,
twined about them, and formed green
arbours, made gay with all sweet flowers.
No hut was to be seen; but instead of it
a large, fair house, with a brazen door





THE ELVES.


and lofty statues. Elfrida was surprised,
but she was not at all shy. She went up
to a beautiful child near her, held out her
hand, and wished the little creature
" Good even."
"Art thou come to visit us ?" said
the bright child. I saw thee playing
on the other side. Stay with us. Thou
wilt like it well."
"But we are running a race."
"Thou wilt find thy comrade soon
enough. There, take this fruit, and
eat."
Elfrida ate the fruit, and found it
sweeter than any she had ever tasted,
and she forgot Andres and the race, and
all her old fears.
A stately woman, in a shining robe,





THE ELVES.


now came up, and asked about the
stranger child.
"Fairest lady," said Elfrida, "I
came here by chance, and now they wish
to keep me."
"You know, Zerina," said the lady,
"that she can only stay a little while."
But she smiled, and the happy chil-
dren came bounding round Elfrida, made
her dance with them, brought her their
lambs and playthings, or sang sweet
songs to musical instruments. But El-
frida kept by the playfellow she had
first spoken to, whose name was Zerina,
and indeed, she was the kindest and
loveliest of all.
Now we will have a royal sport !"
cried Zerina.





THE ELVES.


She ran into the palace, and returned
with a little golden box, in which lay a
quantity of glittering seeds. She took
some in her hand, and scattered it on
the green earth. The grass began in-
stantly to move as in waves, and then
branching rose-bushes started from the
ground, grew rapidly up, and budded,
filling the air with rich perfume. Elfrida
also scattered some of the seeds, and
bright lilies came pushing up. Oh, how
happy she felt!
What a lovely, beautiful play,
mamma !" cried Mary.
Now," said Zerina, look for
something greater."
She laid two pine seeds in the ground
and stamped them in with her foot.





THE ELVES.


Immediately two young, green pine-trees
began to rise from the earth under her
foot, raising her up as they rose.
Grasp me fast," she cried.
Elfrida threw her arms round the
slender little child, and felt herself borne
upwards, for the young trees were fast
springing under them, and were soon
tall pines waving in the soft wind.
Their tops bent towards each other, and
twined into one.
The two children held each other
fast embraced, swinging this way and
that in the red clouds of the twilight,
and kissed each other. The other chil-
dren were, meanwhile, climbing up and
down the trunks, laughing and playing
tricks to one another, and if any one




THE ELVES.


lost its hold and fell, it flew through the
air, and sank slowly and safely to the
ground.
Mary clasped her hands together and
seemed unable to speak; then kissed her
mamma. Willie, meanwhile, was look-
ing very happy and delighted.
At length Elfrida grew rather fright-
ened at the great height. When Zerina
perceived it, she sang a few loud tones,
and the trees began slowly to sink down,
and soon set them on the ground again.
They next went through the brazen
door into the palace. Here there were
many fair women, old and young, sitting
in the round hall, listening to grand
invisible music. In the vaulted ceiling,
palms, flowers, and groves were painted,




THE ELVES.


among which little figures of children
seemed sporting and winding. With
the tones of the music, the images
changed and glowed with the most burn-
ing colours. Now the blue and green
were sparkling like radiant light; now
they faded, and the purple flamed up,
and the gold took fire; and then the
children seemed to be alive among the
flower garlands, and their ruby lips
seemed to breathe, and. their azure eyes
to light up.
Zerina then led Elfrida down a stair
of brass into a subterranean chamber.
Here lay much gold and silver, and
heaps of precious stones. Numbers of
little dwarfs were busied in sorting the
treasures, and storing them in strange-




THE ELVES.


shaped vessels; others, with long red
noses, were tottering along, half bent to
the ground under full sacks of gold,
which with much panting they shook
out on the ground. Then they darted
about awkwardly to catch the golden
balls that were like to roll away, and
sometimes overset each other in their
eagerness. Elfrida could not help laugh-
ing at their strange ways. Behind them
sat a little crumpled old man, with a
crown on his brow and a sceptre in his
hand, whom Zerina greeted reverently.
"What more wanted ?" he cried.
Elfrida was afraid, and did not an-
swer; but her companion said they were
only come "to look around them, in the
chambers."




THE ELVES.


Still your old child's tricks," cried
he. "Will there never be an end to
idleness ?"
With this he turned again to his
employment, and kept his dwarfs hard
at work.
"Who is he ?" whispered Elfrida.
"Our metal prince," replied Zerina,
as they walked along.
They seemed once more to reach the
open air, for they were standing by a
lake; yet no sun appeared, and they saw
no sky over their heads. A little boat
received them, and Zerina steered it
forwards. It shot along into the middle
of the lake. On a sudden, a crowd of
little children came swimming round;
some wore garlands of sedge and water-




THE ELVES.


lily; some had red stems of coral in
their hands, others were blowing on
crooked shells; a tumultuous noise
echoed merrily from the dark shores.
All saluted the strangers, who went
steering on through the revelry, out of
the lake into a little river, which grew
narrower and narrower. At last they
stopped at a rock, and Zerina knocked
upon it. A door opened, and a woman,
who appeared of a glowing red, assisted
them in.
"Are you all brisk here?" inquired
Zerina.
"They are at work," replied the
other, and happy as they could wish."
They went up a winding stair, and
on a sudden entered a hall, so brilliantly




THE ELVES.


lighted that Elfrida's eyes were dazzled
by the radiance. Flame coloured tapes-
try covered the walls; and when her
eyes were a little used to it, she saw
with surprise that in the tapestry there
were figures moving up and down in
dancing joyfulness. Their forms were
so beautiful that nothing could be seen
more graceful than their movements, and
their bodies were red and transparent as
crystal. They smiled on the little stran-
ger, and she was approaching nearer to
them, when Zerina held her back, crying,
"Thou wilt burn thyself, for the whole
of it is fire."
Elfrida felt the heat. Why do the
pretty creatures not come out," said she,
and play with us ?"




THE ELVES.


"As thou lives in the air," replied
Zerina, "so do they live in fire, and
would faint and languish if they left it.
Look now how glad they are; now they
laugh and shout. But for thee it is too
hot here; let us return to the garden."
In the garden the scene was changed
since they left it. The moonshine was
lying .i every flower; the birds were
silent, and the children were asleep in
groups in the groves and arbours. The
two friends, however, felt no fatigue, but
walked about in the warm summer night
in talk till morning.
When the day dawned they refreshed
themselves on fruit and milk, and then
went to the fir-trees, for Elfrida wanted
to see how things looked there. They
5




THE ELVES.


went through pleasant groves full of
birds, then up a hill covered with vines,
then followed the windings of a clear
brook among soft mossy grass, and at
last reached the firs, and the bank which
bounded the place.
"How is it," asked Elfrida, "that
we have to walk so far here, when,
without, the circuit of this ground is so
narrow ?"
"I know not," said her friend; but
so it is."
They walked up to the firs, and a
chill wind seemed to blow from without
upon them. On the tops of the trees
were many strange forms, with mealy,
dusty faces, their misshapen heads not
unlike those of white owls; they were




THE ELVES.


clothed in folded cloaks of shaggy wool;
they held umbrellas of curious skins,
stretched out above them, and they
waved and fanned themselves incessantly
with large bats' wings.
"I could laugh, yet I am frightened,"
said Elfrida.
"These are our good trusty watch-
men," said Zerina. "They are covered
so because, without, it is cold and rainy;
but no snow, or wind, or cold air ever
reaches us down here. We have an
everlasting spring and summer."
"But who are you, then?" said
Elfrida, while returning to the garden.
"We are called the Elves," replied
the friendly child; "people talk about
us in the earth, as I have heard."




THE ELVES.


They now perceived a great bustle in
the garden, and the children cried out to
them, The fair bird is come!"
They hastened to the palace, and
entered with a crowd of young and old,
all shouting for joy. They heard a
triumphant peal of music, and found the
great hall nearly filled with the Elves,
and all were looking upwards. Raising
their eyes also, they saw a large bird
sweeping slowly round in the dome,
describing many a circle in its stately
flight. At last the music ceased, and
the bird floated down upon a glittering
crown, that hung hovering in the air,
under the high window by which the
hall was lighted. His plumage was
purple and green, and golden streaks





THE ELVES.


played through it; on his head there
waved a diadem of feathers, that glanced
like jewels. His bill was red, and his
legs of a clear blue. As he moved, the
colours gleamed and glanced through
each other. His size was like that of an
eagle.
But now poised in the air on the
golden crown, he poured forth a song
more sweet and rich than the night-
ingale. Louder and stronger rose the
song, and streamed like floods of light,
so that all, even the children, shed tears
of joy and rapture. As he ceased, he
rose again towards the roof, and flew
round the dome in circles-then darted
through the door, and soared into the
light heaven, where he shone far up like




THE ELVES.


a bright point, and then vanished from
their eyes.
"Why are you all so glad ?" asked
Elfrida of her companion.
"Because the fair bird has told us
that the King is coming," answered
Zerina. "We have long looked for him,
as you look for Spring when Winter
lingers with you. Wherever he turns
his face, there is joy. This beautiful
bird, that he sent to us, is called Phoenix.
He lives far off in Arabia, on a tree, like
which there is no other on the earth,
neither is there any second Phoenix.
When he feels himself grown old, he
builds a pile of balm and incense, alights
upon it, kindles it, and dies singing-
then; from the fragrant ashes rises the





THE ELVES.


Phoenix young again, and beautiful and
bright."
But now you look sad, Zerina ?"
"Because, my sweet friend, now we
must part; for the sight of the' King is
not permitted to thee."
As Zerina spoke, the lady with the
golden robe came up to them, and said,
"Thou must leave us, my dear child!
but do not forget us, and we will remem-
ber thee."
Zerina wept, and the two friends
kissed each other, then walked hand in
hand towards the fir-trees. Elfrida was
again on the bank; she felt a cold wind,
and no longer saw Zerina, but heard the
little dog bark with might and main, and
ring its tinkling bell. She looked





THE ELVES.


round, felt afraid, and saw the dark firs,
and the ruined huts, and ran on quickly.
She ran homewards, and presently
saw Andres standing under the pear-
tree.
Ah, ah I have won the race !" he
cried.
Elfrida sat down on the grass, quite
confused and fearful. The evening sun
beamed upon her, and the tops of the
dark fir-trees shone like gold in the rays.
As she gazed on them with longing eyes,
she saw her dear Zerina rise on a tall,
green pine, and float in the sunlight on
its waving top; and Zerina saw her, and
stretched out her arms towards her, and
waved her hands up and down with a
gentle soothing action. The little girl





THE ELVES.


smiled brightly; then her eyes closed,
and she sank down in a sweet sleep.
Her mother found her lying there,
and raised her up and placed her in her
own little bed, saying, The dear child
has quite tired herself with running
races; but I never saw her with such
a bright colour, nor such a lovely
smile."
And when little Elfrida awoke, she
remembered all about the Elves, and
began to tell her father and mother and
Andres; but they laughed, and thought
it was a dream. Only they all said she
was sweeter, and happier, and prettier
than ever. The lady of the castle, near
the village, saw her soon after, and was
so pleased with her gentle manners, and





THE ELVES.


her intelligence, that she became very
fond of her, and had her taught many
things. But Elfrida never grew proud,
nor wished to be rich or great, for when
she compared the gay halls and fine
dresses she now saw with those which
she had seen among the Elves, they all
seemed poor to her.
She was never tired of learning what-
ever they could teach her, and she could
sing, and dance, and play better than
any child in the village. Her great
pleasure was to watch the woods in the
golden sunset; for then she often saw
bright forms floating among them, and
her dear Zerina waved her hands to-
wards her.
When Mary's mamma had finished




THE ELVES.


this story, she kissed both the children,
and told them it was bed-time. Little
Mary seemed so full of thought about
the Elves, that she was hardly able to
speak, and only whispered softly, Good
night, dear mamma." Willie seemed to
wish to ask some questions, but Mary
led him away gently and quietly.





"^P'~G) L^\p<'












AN AUTUMN FLOOD.


AM going, said Mary's mamma,
on another evening, to tell you
a story about Scotland, and about some
children who went there by sea, in a
large steam-ship.
Did they go among the beautiful
mountains and lakes, that you and papa
once went to ?" asked Mary.
No; they went to a part of Scot-
land not far north, nor far from the sea
coast, where there are hills, but no high
mountains."




AN AUTUMN FLOOD.


"And is it a much longer voyage
there than to Broadstairs, where Arthur
and Richard went, in the story of The
Two Dear Friends' ?" asked Mary again.
Oh yes, they were only six hours in
going; but it takes nearly two days and
two nights to go to Scotland."
Then you have to go to bed in the
ship," said little Willie.
"Yes, for two nights, and to spend
one whole day and half another in it."
Oh, I shall like to hear about it
very much," said Mary. "What were
the names of these children ?"
Their names were Charlotte,. Helen,
and Robert," said her mamma; "and
they went with their papa and mamma
to visit their uncle and aunt.-- They





AN AUTUMN FLOOD.


went in August, when the weather is
fine, and the days are long. They left
home in the evening, for the steamer was
to start at ten o'clock at night. There
was a great bustle when they came to
the place where the ships lie in the river
Thames. Many people were getting their
trunks and boxes in, and hurrying about.
They liked to see all this bustle, and to
see their own trunks and boxes put in.
Then they stepped on board, across a
wide, firm plank, and jumped for joy to
find themselves really in the ship and
going to Scotland.
It was such a large steamer They
were surprised to see what a length it
was. Then they went into a handsome
cabin, called the saloon, beautifully




AN AUTUMN FLOOD.


lighted, with a great many people in it;
and after being there a little while they
grew very tired, and their mamma took
them to the cabin where they were to
sleep. When they saw their beds, they
all began to laugh. They looked just
like beds made on shelves, one above
another. Two were on one side and two
on the other, of a kind of closet. But
they soon crept in, Charlotte and Helen one
above another, and little Robert opposite.
The fourth bed was for their nurse, who
was going with them. They were all
soon asleep. They never knew when the
steamer began to go fast down the river
towards the sea.
In the morning when they awoke,
first one and then another heard a con-




AN AUTUMN FLOOD.


stant "thump, thump bump, bump!"
going on. This noise was made by the
great engine that turned the paddle-
wheels, and moved the ship on. And
they felt the ship shaking, and trembling,
and rocking, and then they were sur-
prised to hear that they were already
out of the river Thames, and had got
into the salt sea. They were in a great
hurry to be dressed, and when they ran
up on the deck they saw the land on one
side of them, and numbers of ships all
round them, with their white sails shin-
ing in the sun, for it was a very fine
morning. They tried to count them, but
it was very difficult; Charlotte c-ounted a
hundred, and Helen a hundred and ten.
As to little Robert, he was too delighted




AN AUTUMN FLOOD.


to keep steady enough to count, and after
trying once or twice, declared that there
must be a thousand.
Very soon they were called to break-
fast in the saloon, and sat by their papa
and mamma very happily; but they ran
away before they had finished, to see a
town called Yarmouth, by which they
passed so closely that they could see the
houses, and bathmig machines, and people.
All the morning they had plenty to look
at. They met other steamers, and fish-
ing boats, and ships, and saw different
places on the coast. But before dinner-
time they had lost sight of land, and saw
nothing all round them but sea, and did
not meet so many ships and boats. Their
papa then took them to see the engine,





AN AUTUMN FLOOD.


and the great fires down in the engine-
room, and made them look at the paddle-
wheels, that go foaming round and round.
Then came dinner-time, and they were
very hungry; and afterwards they amused
themselves with running about on the
deck and reading story-books. Soon
after tea they went to bed and fell fast
asleep.
Next morning they were glad to see
the coast again. They were passing
high cliffs and dark rocks, and they saw
many sea-birds; gulls with large flapping
wings, that gave a strange, wild cry; and
divers-pretty little creatures that swam,
riding along on the waves, and every now
and then dipped down quite under, and
then came up again at a little distance.





AN AUTUMN FLOOD.


On went the great steam-ship, and
soon their papa told them that the land
they now saw was Scotland.
Did it look different to England ?"
asked Mary.
"Not to the part of England which
they had passed that morning ; but very
different to all they had been looking at
the morning before.. There were fewer
trees, the cliffs were dark brown instead
of white; the grass was not so green,
nor the towns so gay, nor the villages so
pretty; but there were hills that looked
pleasant, and the dark rocks were beau-
tiful."
Presently they came to some very fine
rocks, higher than any they had seen,
and then they passed some rocky islands.





AN AUTUMN FLOOD.


Now they began to see a great many
large white birds flying about, stretching
out their long necks, and their papa told
them that these were called Solan geese,
and that they had their nests on a great
rock, standing out in the sea, called the
Bass Rock. They soon came in sight of
it, and when they passed near it they
could see that its sides were all white
with hundreds of these geese that were
sitting there, and great numbers were
flying in the air over it, and round it.
When they were able to leave off looking
at all this, they saw on the top of the
high cliff opposite to the Bass Rock, a
large ruined castle, called Tantallon
Castle, which they thought very beau-
tiful.




AN AUTUMN FLOOD.


"Do you remember reading about
the Black Douglas in Tales of a Grand-
father ?' asked their papa.
Oh yes," said first one, and then
another.
"Well, that was his castle," he re-
plied.
They looked at Tantallon Castle for
a long time, as long as it was in sight.
Charlotte said it was a great pity it was
so ruined, and Robert wished he could
see where the drawbridge used to be.
Now there began to be a great bustle
in the ship, for they were getting near
Edinburgh, where they were to land.
At last Edinburgh was in sight. It is
the capital city of Scotland, just as
London is of England, and it is very





AN AUTUMN 'FLOOD.


beautiful. They saw it quite plain from
the sea, with hills behind it and on each
side of it, of many forms; some bare
and rocky, others clothed with trees.
When they came quite opposite to it, a
gun was fired in the ship. It made such
a noise that everybody started, and some
of the ladies screamed. Charlotte and
Helen did not like it; but Robert did
very much indeed. Very soon afterwards
they came up to a fine pier, stretching out
into the sea, and there they all landed.
So now they were in Scotland," said
Willie.
They found their uncle's carriage
waiting for them, and it took them to his
house in the country, about fifteen miles
off.




University of Florida Home Page
© 2004 - 2010 University of Florida George A. Smathers Libraries.
All rights reserved.

Acceptable Use, Copyright, and Disclaimer Statement
Last updated October 10, 2010 - - mvs