Frances Meadows, Traits of character, etc.

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Material Information

Title:
Frances Meadows, Traits of character, etc. with illustrations
Series Title:
Round the globe library
Portion of title:
Traits of character
Physical Description:
130, 6 p., 1 leaf of plates : ill. (some col.) ; 17 cm.
Language:
English
Creator:
Frederick Warne and Co ( Publisher )
Scribner, Welford, and Co ( Publisher )
Camden Press ( Printer )
Smith, Elder, and Co ( Printer of plates )
Publisher:
Frederick Warne & Co.
Scribner, Welford, and Co.
Place of Publication:
London
New York
Manufacturer:
Camden Press
Publication Date:

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords:
Girls -- Conduct of life -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Conduct of life -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Children's stories   ( lcsh )
Children's stories -- 1871   ( lcsh )
Publishers' catalogues -- 1871   ( rbgenr )
Bldn -- 1871
Genre:
Children's stories   ( lcsh )
Publishers' catalogues   ( rbgenr )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage:
England -- London
United States -- New York -- New York

Notes

General Note:
Date from inscription.
General Note:
Frontispiece printed in colors by Smith, Elder & Co.
General Note:
Publisher's catalogue follows text.
Funding:
Preservation and Access for American and British Children's Literature, 1870-1889 (NEH PA-50860-00).

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida
Holding Location:
Baldwin Library of Historical Children's Literature in the Department of Special Collections and Area Studies, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida
Rights Management:
All rights reserved, Board of Trustees of the University of Florida.
Resource Identifier:
aleph - 002229943
notis - ALH0283
oclc - 57726838
System ID:
UF00026198:00001

Full Text
This page contains no text.


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FRANCES MEADOWS,TRAITS OF CHARACTER,ETC.aZiitft lltustrations.LONDON:FREDERICK WARNE AND CO.BEDFORD STREET, COVENT GARDEN.NEW YORK: SCRIBNER, WELFORD, AND CO.


CAMDEN PRESS, LONDON, N.W.


CONTENTS.-4--PageJOSEPHINE 1CAROLINE 16CLARA TRAVERS 41ARRIET'S TRIAL 60FRANCES MEADOWS; OR, CHARACTER 86RUTH, THE AMERICAN GIRL 113kl-


This page contains no text.


FRANCES MEADOWS,TRAITS OF CHARACTER, ETC.JOSEPHINE."CANARIES to sell! Canaries to sell! who will buycanaries-pretty canaries?"Josephine Gourlay, a little girl eight years old,heard this cry. She ran to the window, threw itopen, and looked out, first down the street, andthen up the street. She saw a man carrying on hisshoulder a large cage full of canary birds. He hadthat minute passed the door of her father's house.The canary birds looked so beautiful with theirbright yellow feathers, they hopped so nimbly fromperch to perch in the cage, and chirped so sweetly,that Josephine, quite delighted, called out, "Stop,man, I want to look at those little birds.""Buy a canary bird, miss ?" said the man." Oh I should like one very much," replied Jose-phine, "but I must not without leave. Stop a little,and I will go and ask my papa."The man placed his cage upon a post that stood atthe corner of the street, opposite to Mr. Gourlay's1


2 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.house, and promised to wait while she asked herfather's leave to buy one of the canary birds.Away ran Josephine. She went into the roomwhere her father usually sat. He was not there.She then ran upstairs to his bed-room. Neitherwas he there. In great fear that the man wouldnot wait, she ran as quick as her legs would carryher into the little garden at the back of the house,and there she found her father. Quite out of breath,she seized hold of his coat-" Come, come, pray comequick, papa "" Why so?" said her father; " what is thematter?"" Oh, there is a man in the street who sells eana-ries; he has in one cage more than, a hundred-a great cage quite full-he carries it on hisshoulder."" Well," said her father, "and what is that tome? I have often seen canaries.""'Yes, yes," said Josephine, " I know that; but Iwant-I want-dear papa, if you will give me leave,I want to buy one for myself."" Have you any money ? " asked her father." Oh, yes, the money that I saved last winter."" But," said her father, "if you buy the canarybird, who will feed it and take care of it ? "" I, papa, I will feed it. You shall see what ahappy little bird I will make it."


JOSEPHINE. 3" Yes, I do not doubt that such is your wish. Buthave you considered how much care the bird will re-quire? Do you know that it must be fed not onlynow and then, but that you must attend to it regu-larly every day ? "" Oh, yes, I know, dear papa, and that is what Imean to do," answered the little girl." And do you also know that the poor bird, if youforget it, cannot ask for such things as it may want ?If I let you buy the bird, remember that its cage is asort of prison, out of which it cannot get; that if youleave it without food or without water, so it mustremain starving, although plenty of both may bewithin a few inches of its cage. Ah, Josephine,"continued her father, "I am half afraid lest youshould be careless, and suffer it to die of hungeror thirst."" I forget my bird! I let it die of hunger orthirst!" cried Josephine. "No, indeed, I will nevereat my own breakfast until I have given the dearcanary some. Indeed, papa, I am sure you may trustme. Will you not ?""I wish to be able to do so, my dear," replied herfather; "but I have seen you so negligent in takingcare of your playthings and books, that I am afraidof allowing you to have anything which has life.Only think, if you were to forget it only for onodayl"I 2


4 TRAITS OF CHARACTER."I never will, papa, Besides, you know, I can-not forget it, because it will chirp, it will hop about;and that will make me recollect. It will make mecareful.""Well then," said Mr. Gourlay, "I will try yourmemory and let you buy the bird." So saying, heaccompanied Josephine to the house, she pulling himby his hand, of which she never quitted her hold.Having opened the house door, he beckoned to theman to come to them.The man came, and Josephine chose a bird, theprettiest, as she thought, of all that were in the cage.It was a male canary, with the most brilliant yellow-coloured feathers, and with a black tuft upon hishead. She handed her purse to her father that hemight pay for the bird, and Mr. Gourlay drew outhis own purse from his pocket and bought a neatcage, which had a seed-trough and a glass water-bottle fixed to it on the outside. Into this cage thebird was put, and then the man placed the cage in thehands of the eager Josephine, who, full of joy, raninto the house with her prize. Her father shortlyfollowed her, and drove in a hook near the window,upon which she hung the cage. When she had donethis, she called first her mother, and then the ser-"vants, to come and look at her sweet bird. Theyall agreed that it was a beautiful little creature,and her mother hoped it would be happy also.


"JOSEPHINE. 5When Josephine's young friends came to see her,she liked to make them guess what beautiful thingsshe had of her own-all her own; and when theycould not find out, she would say to them, " Do youknow I have the prettiest canary bird in all theworld. He is as yellow as gold, and he has a tuft ofblack feathers on his head. He is a male. I call himMimi, because the man who sold him to me had givenhim that name. Come-will you come and see him?"Her young friends thought it a great treat to seeMimi. And Mimi was so obedient a little fellow,that, whenever his mistress wished, he would sing tothem.Mimi was as happy as a little bird in a cage couldbe. The first thing in the morning came Josephine,with the box of rape and canary seed in one hand,and a cup of fresh water in the other. She care-fully filled the seed-trough, and, after emptying thewater-bottle, filled it again with the fresh waterwhich she had brought. She spread clean sand atthe bottom of his cage, and fastened on the wiresfresh green weeds, such as groundsel and chickweed.But Mimi had other treats. Josephine put asidea piece of every cake or biscuit that was given toher; and sometimes she begged lumps of sugar fromher mother to give him. As she always did every-thing for him herself, Mimi soon learned to distin-guish her from the rest of the family. So soon as


6 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.he saw her approaching, he would clap his wingsand chirp "Cuic, cuic," which so pleased the littlegirl, that she quite longed to take him in her handsand kiss him heartily.When Mimi was in the humour for singing,Josephine was more charmed than ever. Sometimeshe would warble little tunes, and roll his voice in histhroat for such a length of time, that it was quiteastonishing that he could bear to hold his breath solong; then, stopping an instant, out he would breakin a fresh clear note, so strong and piercing, that itmight be heard from top to bottom of the house.It is impossible to describe in words how muchJosephine delighted in this bird. She used to sitat her needle-work, beneath his cage, listening andsinging to him by turns.During the first three weeks Josephine knew nopleasure but her bird; and, for the sake of lookingat him, she neglected many little duties. Butgradually she began to think less of this pleasure.About a month after she had bought the canary,her uncle sent her a book of prints, and she wasimmediately so occupied with them, that Mimi wasless noticed. He chirped out his note of welcome," Cuic, cuic," but Josephine did not seem to hear it,and did not reply to it as usual.Nearly one whole week passed away without thebird's tasting any fresh chickweed, or biscuit, or


JOSEPHINE. 7sugar. Poor fellow! he tried in every way that hecould to rouse his careless little mistress to think ofhim. He sang his sweetest tunes, he chirped moreloudly when he saw her, and he fluttered from oneperch to another. Sometimes, as if in despair, hewould peck the bars of his cage, now become reallya little prison, for he could not help himself tothe nice lumps of sugar that he saw at breakfastand tea in the basin. But all in vain. Josephine'shead was full of other things.Her birth-day was now approaching. A kindfriend sent her, as a present, a large wax doll, thatcould open and shut its eyes, and also a cradle fittedup with proper bedding. This doll, which she calledRosa, made Josephine completely forget Mimi. Frommorning till night she played with the doll, dressingand undressing it a hundred times, talking to it,pretending to feed it, and to walk it about the room.The poor bird was now glad if his mistress evenrecollected to give him fresh food before she wentto bed; and if she remembered to change the wateroccasionally, it was lucky for him. She neither heardthe chirp, nor saw the hop that she once thoughtwould prevent her forgetting the little fellow. Oftenhe had to wait a day and a night without food.Careless Josephine she did not notice that his songwas less merry, that his plumage was less clean andbright, and that he was, in fact, sad and drooping.


8 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.The birth-day came. A party of young friends,who had been asked some days before, arrived todine with her. Gaily they all sat round the table,and Josephine's father and mother, to add to herpleasure, dined with the little party." Mimi is very grave to-day," said one of theyoung visitors; "I have not heard him sing yet."" I was thinking so, too," said Josephine's mother."Is he ill, that he is so silent ?"Mr. Gourlay looked up at Mimi's cage. Every-thing was quite still there. Now, the bird usuallysang very loud when there was a noise of laughingand talking in the room. Mr. Gourlay continued tolook at the cage for some minutes. No sound, nostir-all was quiet. Startled at this, he rose fiomhis chair, and all the little company followed himwith their anxious eyes. He went to the cage andsaw the little bird lying on his belly, panting. Athin film covered his dim eye. His feathers wereruffled, and he was huddled up like a ball. Thatfriendly note of " Cuic, cuic," which he usuallyuttered when his friends approached, was not to beheard. The poor creature had scarcely any life left."' Josephine !" cried Mr. Gourlay, " what ails yourcanary?"Josephine's face and neck became quite scarlet.With hesitation she answered, " Oh! I have-I haveforgotten to-to-" She could not finish; but, trem-


JOSEPHINE. 9bling and sliding down from her chair, she ran outto fetch the box of rape and canary seed.Mr. Gourlay unhooked the cage, and looked intothe seed-trough and the water-bottle. Alas! Mimi hadneither a single grain of seed, nor a drop of water." My poor little fellow !" said Mr. Gourlay;"indeed, you have fallen into cruel hands. If I hadbelieved it possible that this could have happened, 1would never have allowed Josephine to buy you."All the children left the table, and, clasping theirhands, exclaimed, "Poor little Mimi !"" Unhappy Mimi !" said Josephine's mother, "towant even the crumbs that have fallen from the lapof your thoughtless, unkind mistress, and not be ableto reach what she throws away; to see food, andyet suffer the pangs of hunger." Josephine sobbedso loudly, that her mother stopped speaking. Theseed-trough was refilled, and the water-bottle also.Every one but Josephine was busily engaged watch-ing the success of Mr. Gourlay's endeavours torecover the half-starved bird. Josephine, truly un-happy, and filled with shame at her neglect of thelittle sufferer, went up to the nursery and spent theremainder of the day alone and in sorrow. She didnot dare to ask whether Mimi was better, for fear sheshould hear that he was dead. With much troubleMimi was saved; and when Mr. Gourlay saw thathe was out of danger, he began seriously to think of


TO TRAITS OF CHARACTER.requiring Josephine to part with him. " I cannot,"he said, " allow the poor helpless bird to go throughsuch torments again."The next morning, after breakfast, he consultedMrs. Gourlay about sending the bird away. Jose-phine was present at their conversation. She hadfelt cheerful again, when, upon coming down tobreakfast, she saw Mimi upon his perch, cleaninghis feathers. She had once more resolved always tofeed him the first thing, and this morning she haddone so. But when her father spoke of taking thebird from her, she burst into tears." My poor bird, my darling Mimi! Oh! dearpapa, do not be so unkind; pray do not take mylittle favourite from me. I am so sorry. I willnever, never forget him again. Dear little Mimi,don't go away."" Josephine," said her father, "I do not wish tobe unkind to you, but I cannot suffer this helplesscreature to be so cruelly used. If you will not takecare of him, I must. He is shut up within four wirewalls. Not being able to speak, he cannot fsk forfood; and not having his liberty,, he cannot helphimself when he feels hungry. You are either toomuch occupied, or too careless, to think of him, and,therefore, it will be better for him to be sent tosome one with more time or inclination to attend tohis wants."


JOSEPHINE. II" Dear papa," said Josephine, " try me but onceagain, and you shall see how careful I will be. I dolove my Mimi so much."" If so, why did you neglect him?" asked herfather. " You do not seem to be aware how greata pain the pang of hunger and thirst is.""Papa," said Josephine, "if you knew how sorryI feel for the pain I have given him, I am sure youwould forgive me, and still continue to trust me. Ishall never be happy without Mimi-dear Mimi."And she looked up at his cage, while the tears fellfast from her eyes." Well, Josephine," said her father, after hesitatingfor some time, between his fear for the bird and pityfor his daughter, " I believe you are sorry for yourcruel neglect of Mimi, and I will once more trust himto your care; but never forget that he is a prisoner,and do not let me again have to reproach you with thecruelty of making him suffer the pains of hunger andthirst."Josephine kissed her father, but she could not findwords to thank him. The attempt to speak seemedalmost to choke her; for although she was rejoicedthat Mimi was not to be taken from her, her grieffor what she had done still weighed heavily uponher.Again the cage was decked with fresh groundseland chickweed, again pieces of biscuit and sugar


12 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.were stuck between the wires, and again Mimi andJosephine were good friends."Kind little creature," said Josephine to herself,"he loves me as much as ever-he forgets all myunkindness to him !" Mimi was again as happy ashe could be.About a month after this, it happened that Mr. andMrs. Gourlay were obliged to take a distant journeyinto the country." Josephine," said they both to her, as they steppedinto their chaise, " remember Mimi-we trust him toyour care."Josephine promised to remember him, and hardlywere her parents gone than she ran to supply thecage with everything that the bird could want.At the end of eight days, she thought she shouldlike to have some of her young friends to come anddrink tea with her; and she had a merry little party.They played at blind-man's buff, at puss in the corner,and hunt the slipper, and at last they danced. Whenher young friends left her, Josephine went to bed quitetired.The next morning she awoke, thinking of the plea-sure of the evening before; and while she was dress-ing, she asked the nurse to go and invite her youngfriends to come again directly after breakfast. Butthe nurse refused to go so early. It would be quiteearly enough, she said, if they came in the afternoon.


O7SEPHINE. 13Josephine, too impatient to wait, put on her bonnetas soon as she had eaten her breakfast, and got one ofthe other servants to go with her to her friends' house,to ask them to walk with her.But Mimi?Oh he was obliged to remain alone, and to fast.The next day Josephine again amused herself withher young friends.But Mimi?He pecked the wires of his cage, but again he wasforgotten. Fainting for want of food, he neither sangnor chirped, but sat miserably on his perch, with hishead buried in his breast.The next day Josephine was invited to spend at theZoological Gardens.But Mimi?Poor, lonely, speechless bird in the midst of somuch pleasure, he was without pleasure-he was notthought of.The next day, or twelve days after Mr. and Mrs.Gourlay's departure, they came back. Josephine hadscarcely thought of their return, her head was so fullof amusements; and she was quite surprised, when thechaise drove up to the door. She ran downstairs, how-ever, quickly and joyfully, to meet them.As soon as her parents had kissed her, and saidthey were glad to see her again, her father asked," How is Mimi ?"


14 TRAITS OF CHARACTER." Very well, I believe," answered Josephine, star-tled by her father's question, for she had not thoughtof the bird, and she ran to fetch the cage to show himto her father.Alas! the poor bird was dead! Cold and stiff, it layupon its belly, its wings stretched out, its beak open,its eyes covered with a white film.Josephine screamed, and wrung her hands. Herfather and mother hastened into the room, and atonce saw the cause of her grief." Unhappy bird !" exclaimed Mr. Gourlay, "howpainful has been your death! If I had strangledyou the day that I left home, you would only havesuffered a momentary pang, whereas you have en-dured for many days the torments of hunger andthirst. Your death has, indeed, been a long andcruel agony!"" Poor Mimi " said Mrs. Gourlay, "it is fortunatethat you are at length removed from so thoughtless aguardian."Her parents took the dead bird away, and Jose-phine, with her face hidden in her hands, could notmove from the place where she stood. Shewould havegiven up her playthings, she would have recalled thedays which she had passed so merrily and so thought-lessly, to have brought back to life the departed Mimi,but it was too late.Mr. Gourlay had the bird stuffed, and placed in a


0OSEPHINE. 15glass case, with the words " DUTY first, and PLEASUREafterwards," written in large letters underneath it.Whenever Josephine's eyes were turned towards thecage, they filled with tears. She felt, when shecaught a glimpse of dead Mimi's yellow feathers,as if she should never be happy again. She beggedher father to remove the bird, but he refused to do so." When I see," said he, "that you have really be-come more careful, I will remove it; but you havebeen guilty of repeated acts of gross negligence, andit is for your good that something to warn you of theconsequences of such conduct should be constantlybefore your eyes."Josephine could not forget her faults. She con-tinually heard the different persons of the family asthey passed the case, say, with a sigh, "Poor Mimi Iyou suffered a terrible death." But she graduallybecame more careful, for she tried to improve herself.She often denied herself gratifications in order not toneglect her duties, and she found that the pleasure ofknowing that all her duties had been performed wasthe greatest happiness she could enjoy.When her parents observed that for a long timeshe had neglected no duty, they agreed that the sadcase might be removed. One morning, when Jose-phine came down to breakfast, she perceived thatit was gone. " Now," said she, " I am happy, foryou no longer think me a careless little girl."


C AROLI NE." OH, fie Caroline, to sit there nursing that lazy cat,when you have done so much mischief in the garden!"cried her brother William."* I have not been into the garden this long time,"said Caroline, "so I cannot have done any harm;"and she patted the cat's head."Not been into the garden Pray, how then didthe geese and ducks get in? You had the care ofthem, and mamma desired you to drive them throughthe garden into the cow-yard," replied her brother."The geese and ducks I" said his sister. "Oh !they are quite safe: I only left them to rest them-selves a little on the grass-plot, while I rested too,for I was as tired as they were.""You are always tired, I think," said William."It must be doing nothing that fatigues you so much.


CAROLINE. 17But now you must stir, for your laziness, or fatigue,as you call it, has caused a great deal of mischief.While you have been idling here with the cat, thegeese have been eating the summer cabbages, andthe ducks the spinach, besides trampling down theyoung plants and the French-beans."Before Caroline could reply, she heard her mother'svoice inquiring for her; and hastily turning the catout of her lap, she ran into the garden.Too true was the news that William had given toher. The geese and ducks had left the grass-plot,and strayed into the kitchen garden, where she foundthem very busily employed in eating the vegetables.Out of a bed of fine summer cabbages, five or sixonly remained unhurt. The geese had eaten manyof them to the very stump. The ducks were tread-ing down the beans in hunting for slugs, and eatingthe spinach."Tiresome creatures !" cried Caroline, "to giveme all this trouble. Why could not you stop on thegrass-plot where I put you? Get away, get away, Isay; you cause more trouble than you are worth,this hot day;" and in an angry manner she began todrive them off the beds on to the paths.The ill-temper made the matter worse, for thebirds being frightened, flew about in all directions,screaming and quacking; and Caroline losing allcommand of herself, picked up stones to throw at2


I8 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.them, and broke off a long switch from a pear-treeto punish them with. 'But before she could use it,her brother William, together with her mother andthe gardener, came up; and Caroline, ashamed,dropped the stick, and ran hastily down the narrowpath where the poor ducks had taken refuge.", Caroline," said her mother, " come back. Youwill kill these creatures with your violence."Caroline stopped, and after some trouble the geeseand ducks were gently driven from the garden intothe yard, and the garden gate was closed afterthem.As Caroline walked out of the garden, she feltsorry that her idleness should have caused so muchmischief; and she wished that she had seen the geeseand ducks into the cow-yard at once. "It wouldhave been less trouble," said she.Yes; it is always the way to save trouble to dowhat is to be done well at once.Caroline was fourteen years old, and had regularduties to perform. It was her business to go intothe dairy to see the milk skimmed and the creammeasured; and on the mornings that the butter waschurned, to see it taken from the churn and washedand weighed. Her mother expected that she wouldkeep an account of the quantity made, and also ofthe quantity of milk which the two cows gave daily.She had, besides, to weigh and give out from the


CAROLINE. 19store-room the different things required in the house.Her mother had trusted these things to her care, butCaroline's indolence was so great that, although shewished to please her mother, she scarcely ever was upearly enough to visit the dairy at the proper time; andwas obliged to give the key to the dairy-maid, notbeing herself ready to attend. And she would haveto visit the store-room many times in the course ofthe day, because she would not take the trouble tothink what would be wanted every day before shewent there.When Caroline came into the house, she went intoher mother's room and told her how sorry andashamed she was for her late piece of idleness."Caroline," said her mother, "I grieve not forthe cabbages that have been destroyed, but for theunhappy life that you are preparing for yourself.You are now fourteen years of age, and alreadyfeel the discomfort that arises from your indolence.But what you feel now is as nothing compared withwhat you will feel, if you suffer that which is stillbut a slight failing to grow into a confirmed habit.You will be neither trusted nor loved."Feeling the justice of these remarks, and heartilysorry to see her mother so much vexed with her,Caroline made many promises to endeavour to con-quer her laziness.The next morning, when the maid came to say she22


20 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.was ready to go into the dairy and wanted the key,Caroline first rubbed her eyes, saying she was verysleepy, and that it was very early; and then remem-bering the many new-formed resolutions of not in-dulging in indolence, she told the maid that shewould soon be ready. She did not give up the key.This morning she had the satisfaction of feeling thatshe did her duty; for she herself unlocked the dairybefore six o'clock, and while the butter was churned,she saw the new-milk measured; and when thebutter had been washed and weighed, she put downthe quantity of both milk and butter into the book.Her younger sister Maria fed the poultry; andthe young people met their mother at breakfastwith a good account of morning duties .well per-formed.The day so well begun was equally well continued.Caroline deserved and received her mother's praisefor her good conduct; and when the merry party metat supper, her mother, taking a letter from herpocket, told her children that she had some goodnews which they little expected-that in a fortnightthey would see their father.This news was received with a general shout ofjoy. "We will go and meet him," was the first cry." Will he come in the morning or evening, dearmother? Read all his letter, pray do!"",He will not arrive till the evening, and I hope


CAROLINE. 21we shall all go to meet him," said their mother; "butso great a treat can only belong to the industrious.Let us therefore have a good account of nothing leftundone every day." Their mother then read theletter to them.The two boys, Henry and William, began to thinkof the manner in which they should receive theirfather. But their mother begged them to talk of allthat in the morning, as it was now bed-time. Theyoung people obeyed; and Caroline went to bed fullof schemes of happiness. Her father had beenabsent from home more than three months, and allhis children expected his return with eagerness anddelight.Caroline and her brothers met early the nextmorning to settle their plans of rejoicing for theirfather's return. William proposed that they shouldmake a large bonfire on the top of the hill whichgives, as he said, the first glimpse of home. "Yes,"said Henry; "and we will be there, and we willhave a famous lot of fire-works; and as soon as ourfather appears in sight, we will send up a serpent."" Oh, that will be beautiful," said Caroline; " butit will be finer still if we each of us send one off atthe same time."" And mamma says I may go with you, if it is notmuch past nine," said little Maria. " I shall runand kiss papa first."


22 TRAITS OF CHARACTER." Let us save the white currants that are gettingripe, for him," said Caroline: " the white currants onour tree. Maria, will you give your half?"" Oh, yes, that I will; and let us take the best tohim. He will like them so much after his longjourney," said Maria.Everything was thus pleasantly arranged. Theboys were to make the fire-works and to collect thematerials for the bonfire, and to convey them to theplace, which was three quarters of a mile from thehouse. Having settled their plans, the children,eager as they were to see their father, could nothelp hoping that he would arrive sufficiently late toallow their bonfire and fire-works to be seen to ad-vantage.Caroline's improved activity continued in full forcefor two or three days; and then little by little herlong-indulged habit, of indolence crept over heragain, and began to conquer her. A few minuteslater each morning soon destroyed her early rising.She was again as usual the last down, and she hadthe mortification of seeing the servant fetch the key,and of knowing that her mother rose early and wentto the dairy herself. Her mother's health was notstrong, and the extra fatigue that she had waseasily to be traced in the paleness of her counte-nance. Every day Caroline said, "I will be up intime to-morrow;" and every morrow Caroline only


CAROLINE. 23got down in time to eat her breakfast just before itwas removed.This indolence also made her untidy in her per-sonal appearance. She was satisfied with hurryingher clothes on, without first washing herself; andthought herself clean enough when she had passedover her face the corner of a towel dipped in a littledrop of water at the bottom of her basin. A comb,some mornings, scarcely passed through her hair;and it was seldom that a hair-brush, nail-brush, andtooth-brush were used as they ought to be. Shethought herself dressed when she pleased her eye byputting round her waist a smart coloured ribbon,although even in this she did not take the trouble tosuit the ribbon to the colour of the dress. Carolineoften, too, used a pin where she should have sewedon a button or hook; and let every little girl rememberthat, whenever a pin is employed where a needle andthread ought to be used, she is untidy and unpleas-ing in her appearance.Caroline, besides the care of her own linen, hadalso part of her eldest brother Henry's. This wasincluded in her share of the business of the house;and it ought to have been her care, as it was herduty, to keep his shirts neatly mended. But thesame laziness which caused her to neglect her otherduties, made her also put off mending from week toweek the things required. Small rents and holes had


24 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.thus become so large as to render many of Henry'sshirts unfit to be worn. Her brother at lastbegan to complain to her of the uncomfortablestate of his clothes; and one morning he broughtdown the shirt she had given to him, saying,he positively would not wear such a raggedthing." What a plague!" said his sister." What idleness, rather say," replied her brother." If I were to write my Greek exercises or Latintranslations in as slovenly a manner as you do yourwork, I should be quite ashamed to let my father ormy master see them."" I do my work well enough," said Caroline, pet-tishly. " You tear your clothes much more thananybody else. If I were to work all day and allnight too, it would be of no use."" I wish you would try during the day, and Iwould excuse you at night," said Henry, laughing;" you would soon have nothing to do. You must,however, give me a shirt, for I am going in half anhour to my Greek lesson, and if you cannot I mustask my mother."" You need not do that," replied his sister, alarmed:for she knew too well the sad state of the clothesgiven into her charge, to wish her mother to seethem. " If you will wear this shirt, which has onlyone little tear at the shoulder, to-day, I will put*


CAROLINE. 2jsome new wristbands on another before you want itto-morrow morning."Henry good-humouredly took the offered shirt,and shook his head significantly at the same time,and said, laughing, "AhI Caroline, I am afraid it willbe-rags out of sight, out of mind; but I will bringsome sticking-plaster home with me, for it is but fair,if you prick your fingers working at my wrist-bands, that I should assist in healing the wounds."Henry set off to attend his master, who lived inthe town three miles from his father's house. Hewent twice a-week, on half-holidays, for four hoursat a time. Caroline, instead of proceeding at onceto fulfil her promise, found the weather too hot justthen to sit down to needlework, and therefore putoff the evil hour, and amused herself with sitting inthe shade, at one time reading a story-book, and atanother time nursing the cat, till the coolness of theafternoon came on. But then came another excusefor delay, for William having prepared his schoolwork for the next morning, asked her to walk andmeet Henry. Henry's name, it is true, brought theshirt to her recollection; but she felt more inclinedto walk than to work; and so she again yielded toself-indulgence, flattering herself that she could getup early in the morning, and mend his shirt.,Caroline was so long getting her bonnet, that theyhad not walked more than a mile before they met


26 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.Henry. " Well, Caroline," said he, " how do youdo? I have not forgotten you-see here is a paperof sticking-plaster which I have bought for you.How many wounds are there on your fingers?"" Not one," said Caroline." Then my poor shirt is unmended," said Henry.Caroline made no answer. Her walk did notseem to give her much pleasure; and she returnedhome weary, and out of spirits.The next morning Henry tapped at her door, andheard, with considerable anger, when he inquired forhis shirt, that it was not mended. But, after manybitter complaints, he was again persuaded to put upwith a ragged shirt in silence.Caroline, as she looked upon the quantity of un-mended linen which she had allowed to increaseupon her hands, felt ready to cry. It wanted nowbut two days to her father's return; and it was abso-lutely necessary that a shirt should be mended forHenry; for every one of his shirts was ragged. Shehad not courage to apply to her mother, and tell herhow disgracefully lazy she had been. She deter-mined to give up the whole day to needlework.But when she joined the rest of the family at break-fast, she heard that her brothers had invited someyoung friends to a cricket-match in the field thatafternoon, and her plan of industry was immediatelygiven up.


CAROLINE. lyWhen the boys were assembled, Henry asked hismother to come and sit in the tent which he had putup, and look on at their game; and Caroline, as ifshe had nothing to do but amuse herself, took herseat in it also. Henry was soon called to bowl, andto do this more easily he took off his jacket. Therags that his sister obliged him to put on were nowdisplayed in public. The rent had increased somuch that the whole of his shoulder was bare. Hiscompanions laughed and joked, telling him that hewas cool and airy." I must put on my hot jacket, I suppose," saidhe, " for I am really ashamed to be seen."When he came to, the tent for his jacket, the stateof his linen was observed by his mother. " My dearboy," said she, " pray, go in and change those rags.How came you to wear such a shirt?"Henry looked at Caroline, and she, colouring verydeeply as her mother looked at her also, stammeredout a few unmeaning words in a sorrowful tone, butwas quite unable to make an excuse.Seeing her confused looks, her mother said nomore, but taking hold of her daughter's hand, in-stantly returned to the house, and going to Henry'sdrawers, began to take out and unfold the linen.Caroline now burst into tears." Dear mother," said Henry, who had followed, inhopes of finding a shirt that he could wear, " Caro-


28 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.line is so sorry, do forgive her this time; she willtake more care in future."" I wish I could think so," said his mother; " butCaroline's indolence grieves me more and moreevery day. I fear it will end in my being obligedto treat, her as a child; since she shows herselfunfit to be treated as a young person of her ageought to be."His mother then gave Henry the least ragged ofthe unmended shirts, and then giving Caroline suchdirections about mending another as she thoughtnecessary, desired her to do it that afternoon."And may not I take my workout into the field?"asked Caroline."Certainly not; you would be sure to haveyour attention distracted from it by what wasgoing on. It is your own fault that you aan-not look on at your brothers' game," replied hermother. "Had you attended to your work at theproper hours, you would not now be deprived of thispleasure. I shall be obliged to take away all youramusements if you do. not exert yoqKself to keepyour brother's clothes in a neat state. It is a dis-grace to us, Caroline, that he should be seen as hewas to-day. With patience and good humour at onceemploy yourself at what I have given you to do."Caroline had the additional vexation to see hermother take away some of the shirts to mend her-


CAROLINE. 29self. She watched her, with a bundle and her work-box in her hand, crossing the garden into the field tothe cricketers.Silently and sorrowfully did Caroline sit down toher work. With every stitch that she put in, shehad a feeling of repentance that she had not putit in when it was first wanted. As she worked shethought of the way she had been spending hertime. She could recollect nothing satisfactory.A few pencil drawings, a few sums, and abouttwelve pages of French translation, were all thatshe could remember to have done for her own im-provement during the last three months. Notthat her household duties had occupied much ofher time. She had not kept the accounts regu-larly. She had but seldom given out from thestore-room the different things wanted. She hadbut seldom been to the dairy. She had not nursedthe baby, nor helped in teaching the younger chil-dren. Every day was a blank. Every day shedeserved to be written down "Idle." As Carolinethought of all this, she cried bitterly.But after some time she wiped her eyes, andtaking courage, said, "I can work quick and wellwhen I choose, and I can do other things wellalso to please mamma when I take the trouble;and I will try now at least to do what she wishes,and make her and myself happy." With these


30 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.good feelings, she worked steadily on, not stoppingeither to stroke the cat, loll out of the window, orto read any of the amusing story-books that werewithin her reach.She was not long in mending the shirt, for sheworked in earnest; and she had the pleasure ofhearing herself praised by her mother. Henryalso, who was present, was delighted that his sisterhad succeeded in earning the praise bestowed uponher, and he thanked her for her diligence.This evening, as soon as tea was over, Henryand William employed themselves in looking overwhat they had prepared against their father's re-turn. These boys had copied, in a neat hand-writing, their Latin and Greek exercises, and hadwritten out a long account of the arithmetic andmathematics which they had learned during hisabsence. Henry had, besides, helped his motherto keep an exact account of the money that hadbeen paid to the different people employed by hisfather. Little Maria had made a book, in whichshe had written down, as well as she was able,an account of how many eggs, whether from hens,ducks, or guinea-fowls, she had collected, how muchneedlework she had done, and how much weeding inthe garden. What lessons she had done were writtendown in it also.Caroline alone had kept no account; and if she


CAROLINE. 37had kept one, the number of blanks in it wouldhave made her afraid to look at it. As she sawthe happy faces of her brothers and sisters whilethey were so employed, she felt truly sorry thatshe should have so misspent her time. She hadnot enjoyed herself while she had given way toindolence, and she had lost the pleasure of lookingback on well-spent time.The gardener had given notice that he intendedthat night to take a hive of honey without killingthe bees; and, at about nine o'clock, he broughtthe hive full of combs into the house. Maria hadgone to bed, and the two boys had gone out tofinish their fireworks. Caroline and her mother wereat work together. At her mother's request, she wentout at once for the purpose of taking the comb outof the hive, and separating the honeycomb from thecells containing the young bees. Her mother hadinstructed her how to cut off the waxen coverings onboth sides of the honey-combs, so that they mightdrain through the hair-sieves into the dishes.Unfortunately for Caroline, when she came to thepantry where the hive had been placed, she heardher brothers letting off some of the fireworks to try(as they said) if they were good; and this madeher forget the errand on which she had come. Shewas so much interested in looking at what her brotherswere doing, that she loitered till it was time to go to


32 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.bed. She determined, however, to be up before break-fast to attend to the honeycomb. But, as usual, hergood intentions were followed by nothing useful.She awoke only just a quarter of an hour beforebreakfast-time, and her hurry to be down madeher more slovenly than usual in performing herscanty operations in dressing herself. The pointsof the pins stuck out frightfully on each side of hercollar. Her hair was rough, and her face and handswere scarcely touched with water. She came to thebreakfast-table with none of that fresh appearance inher looks given by the free use of cold water.Caroline felt much relieved when she saw hermother come into the room with her bonnet on,ready to go out. A neighbour's child had beentaken violently ill, and its mother had sent to re-quest that Caroline's mother would be so kind asto come and assist with her advice. Caroline'smother had come in before she went, expressly totell her daughter to be careful to keep the door andwindows shut in the room where, as she supposed,the honeycomb had been placed to drain.As soon as her mother had gone, Caroline ate herbreakfast hastily, and hurried her brothers and sisterwith theirs; and wishing to spare her mother thevexation of knowing that the honeycomb was stilluntouched, she ran to the pantry without a moment'sdelay. She was not long in pulling out the combs


CAROLINE. 33from the hive; but in her hurry she did not think ofshutting the door and windows. She separated the"combs, placing the combs that contained the youngbees in their various stages of growth in a large pan,and the honeycombs in dishes. She carried thesedishes to a table in the hall; and left them therewhile she went to look for the store-room key. Shewas going to take all these things to the store-room,there to finish the work which ought to have beendone the night before.In less than five minutes, the call of her sisterMaria made her run back to the hall."Caroline! Caroline! make haste! the bees! thebees! The dishes are covered with bees the houseis full of bees! Oh, what shall we do ? ""Caroline," cried Henry, who had come into thehall for his hat, as he was setting off for school, " bequick, or there will be no honey left.", This information was too true. In a few minutesmore the house swarmed with bees in a very angrystate. The noise they made was prodigious. Theysettled upon the various combs, some sucking thehoney, others gathering in clusters on the cells of theyoung bees. Every attempt to drive them off wasuseless. They only became more and more irritated,and stung such as interfered.Maria, following Caroline's order to run away withone of the dishes of honeycomb, was stung so severely3


34 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.in the hand that she dropped the dish, and crying, ranupstairs out of the way of the bees.Caroline was in great distress, and too much con-fused to think what was the best to do. Henrycalled the gardener, who came in with Williamimmediately." Our neighbours are quite astonished," said thegardener, "at the bustle among their bees."" Well done I" exclaimed William. "No wonderthe bees from all the gardens near us are flocking inhere! The smell of the honey makes them wild."" And the smell of the honey and of their brood-cells taken away," said the gardener, "makes ourscome."" Shut the doors and windows, then," said Henry,"and let us cover over the dishes as quickly aspossible.""What are we to do?" cried Caroline, quitefrightened, as the bees every instant flew around andsettled upon her."Oh, queen-bee, you must hive them all," saidWilliam; "you have attracted them."" We must burn some brimstone, and then coverover the dishes," said the gardener. " Let some onerun and fetch a lump of brimstone in an old ironspoon or tin-plate, and bring a light to set fire to it."This was soon brought, and the boys and the gar-dener held the burning brimstone near the dishes,


CAROLINE. 35and in different parts of the hall. The vapour ofthe brimstone soon overpowered the bees, and theydropped down in great numbers; and the gardenercrushed them by hundreds as they lay stupifiedon the floor.In the midst of this confusion, while the eyes ofthe young people were smarting, and they werecoughing with the suffocating fumes of the brim-stone that filled the house, their mother arrived." What is the matter ?" said she, "that, all downthe road, the bees should be out in such numbers,and so agitated ?"" Ask the queen-bee, mamma," said William, half-laughing. "She wants a hive in the hall.""I am ndt"the queen-bee," cried Caroline, thetears rolling down her cheeks with vexation, andwith the pain she was suffering from the stings, andthe brimstone fumes. "I could not help it."' "No, indeed," said Henry, laughing, " William ismistaken. I think we should rather say that thedrone, and not the queen-bee, has done all the mis-chief. If it had not been for the gardener's brimstoneI think the poor thing would have been killed by herangry pursuers."" It is not my fault," said Caroline, angrily. " Iwill not be called a drone.""Hush-hush !" interrupted her mother, " do notadd ill-temper to indolence. Repair the mischief3 2


36 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.you have caused, as well as you can. Clear thecombs from the bees, and cover the dishes over oneby one, now that the bees are stupified, and runaway with them to the store-room."" Do not kill any more of the poor things," saidHenry. " While they are torpid we can remove thecombs; and they may recover by and by, and flyaway to their homes again.""I am afraid," said the gardener, "that but fewwill go back to their hives. The honey and thebrood-cells have made them mad."William, wishing to save the stupified bees thatwere on the table and floor, was gently sweepingthem up, and putting them with a spoon into a pan,intending to take them into the garden, when oneof them stung him on the finger." Thank you, Caroline," said he."What for?" asked Caroline." One of your subjects has wounded me," said he,laughing; " and I think it right to inform you, asqueen-bee, of her bad conduct, so that you maypunish the offender."" Put some hartshorn to the wound," said hismother; "and do not call her the queen-bee anymore."With great trouble the dishes were at last con-veyed to the store-room, and the keyhole of thedoor was carefully stopped. Then the house doors


CAROLINE. 37were thrown open, the torpid bees were carried out,and the agitation of the neighbouring hives graduallysubsided.A little hartshorn and oil was then applied to thewounds of those who had been stung.The morrow came, the long-looked-for and wished-for day, that was to bring back their father after solong an absence. All was bustle and joy. It was aholiday for all. The boys packed up the fire-workswhich they had made in some, tin cases that hadheld gunpowder; and collected the necessary mate-rials for the bonfire on the top of the hill where theymeant to light it. The girls prepared all things fortheir father's refreshment, and gathered a basket oftheir own ripe currants, ready to take with themwhen they went to meet him.It was a beautiful day in August-warm andclear. The afternoon was impatiently expected; andwhen dinner was concluded, the young people wentto prepare themselves to meet their father.At five o'clock everything was in readiness. Theyset off, but were scarcely outside the garden-gate,when it was discovered that one of Caroline's stock-ings had a large hole in it. Her mother stopped,and pointed it out to her.Caroline blushed, and was silent." On a day of so much happiness and expectedpleasure, I will forgive even this disgraceful unti-


38 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.diness, if you have other stockings fit to put on,"said her mother.Caroline made no reply.- She could not answer,because she knew that her stockings were as muchneglected as her brother's clothes had been." Why do not you speak ?" asked her mother.Caroline being still silent, her mother continued-"I leave it to yourself to decide whether you wishyour father, after so long an absence, to be pained bythe sight of his daughter's slovenliness."Caroline burst into tears, and slowly turned backto the house. Truly penitent and ashamed, she sawthe party depart without her. She listened to thesound of their voices as long as she could hear them,and cried till she could cry no longer.But, suddenly wiping her tears from her eyes, shesaid-".This punishment I have brought on myselfby my indulgence in that indolence of which mymother has so often tried to cure me. I will be adisgrace to her no longer; I will not meet my fatheras a sloven, although I have been one during hisabsence. I will prove to both my father and motherthat I am anxious to improve, and will employ myselftill their arrival in mending as many things as I can."Caroline accordingly took out her thimble andneedle and cotton, and first mended herself a pair ofstockings to put on. One half-hour only was re-quired for this. For the sake of indulging some idle


CAROLINE. 39whim, she had sacrificed the pleasure of meeting herfather. She knew he would ask for her; and whatwould be said? This thought renewed her grief,but it also urged her to further exertion. She openedher drawers. There all was confusion. How dif-ferently were Maria's drawers kept. Everythingthere was laid in its place. " I will try to be moreindustrious; I will try to be neat," said Caroline;and in a moment she turned everything out of herdrawers, and put them all in order. She thenmended some of her stockings; and was astonishedto find how easily everything might be kept mended,and in order, by a little steady application. Thedusk of the evening coming on, she could no longersee. "How long they are I I wish they wouldcome!" said she, looking from the window.The clock struck eight, and Caroline saw at a dis-tance a shower of bright sparks. " Oh!" said she,starting up, "they are coming; that is one of Henry'sserpents, and another, and another. Oh, how I wishI was with them !"She now began to hear the shouts of joy, whichgrew louder and louder every minute, and an-nounced, through the darkness, that the happy partywas approaching. At length they reached the gate.Caroline ran down to the house-door to meet herfather. He had already learned from her mother thecause of his eldest girl's absence, and, therefore, he


40 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.had no occasion to make any inquiries. But Carolinewas proud to tell him how she had employed herselfwhile waiting for them. Her father kissed her, andkindly told her he hoped that henceforward her dailyaccount would be as good, and that he should havethe pleasure of seeing his eldest girl punctual andindustrious." Conquer your indolence, my dear girl," said he,"and do not let your mother and myself be anylonger uneasy on your account. Let us have thepleasure of seeing you neat and useful; and the re-flection that you have left no duty unperformed willmake your life cheerful and happy."As Caroline listened to her father, she made manygood resolutions to endeavour to reform the badhabits that, little by little, were making her bothunhappy and useless. It was a difficult task that laybefore her; but at each successful attempt to do herduty, the task became easier; and, when once thebetter habit had been formed, she found it as easyand pleasant to be industrious and useful, as beforeshe had thought it difficult and painful. We rejoiceto add that in time she succeeded, and had thereward of perseverance in good.G^~Qf^


CLARA TRAVERS.CLAIA TRAVERS was the eldest child of Mr. andMrs. Travers. She had never been to any school,but had been instructed at home by an intelligent,well-informed mother, and had received occasionallessons in music and drawing, from such masters asa country town afforded. It was true she could notplay on the piano quite so well as the little MissMitfords, nor talk French so fluently as the MissHargraves, her opposite neighbours. Her progressin both these acquirements was checked by a veryunfortunate circumstance. Mrs. Travers had losther usual good health, and become so frequentlyindisposed, that notwithstanding her exertions tocontinue her instructions to Clara, she found it fre-quently impossible. Neither could Clara practiseher music alone when her mother was ill, for thesound of the piano affected her mother's head sopainfully, that the piano was frequently closed forweeks together.But Clara had qualities of far more value thanthe power of playing the most difficult music; qua-lities that made her, long before she was eleven


42 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.years of age, her mother's beloved little friend andcompanion. She was so perfectly trustworthy thatshe could always be depended on; and her mother,therefore, felt that her wishes, once expressed, weresure to be followed. Then no one could doubtClara's word, because she was known to be particu-larly careful tp speak the truth, and her activityand forethought rendered her an excellent assistantto her mother in family duties. Indeed duringMrs. Travers' many indispositions, Clara almostfilled her mother's place. With a very few direc-tions, she managed to keep the weekly accounts, togive out daily the necessary articles for family usefrom the store closet, to prepare her brothers eachmorning for school, and to wait upon her motherwith an attention that could not be surpassed. Whenthe nurse was engaged with the other children, shewould amuse the baby; and each morning that sheheard its plaintive cry, when laid in its crib duringthe time that the nurse dressed the little ones, shewould lay aside her occupations, or a favourite book,to run to take him up and console him. No wonderthat her mother loved her IThe business of 'Mr. Travers occasioned him tomake long journeys in different parts of the country,and he was frequently absent for several weeks to-gether.It happened one summer that Mrs. Travers became


CLARA TRA VERS. 43more than usually ill during the absence of her hus-band on one of his most distant journeys. Hopingshe might soon recover, she would not allow Clarato write to her father, as she felt reluctant to alarmhim needlessly, or to hasten his return. Day afterday passed, and the anxious little girl saw her motherbecoming worse and worse, until the very sound ofthe children's voices was no longer endurable to her.The joyous laugh and the painful cry equally affectedher mother's head, and Clara knew not how to guardher from them, as her little brothers were at homefor the Midsummer holidays. They were good-tem-pered, merry little fellows, and certainly did notwish to add to their mother's sufferings, but it wasa difficult matter to make them understand, or atleast to make them remember that the loud shout,the crack of the whip, and the heavy tread, couldoccasion any pain to their mother.There is one thing, it must be owned, which partlyaccounts for the difficulty that Clara met with inpersuading her brothers and sister to be quiet.Clara had not usually a kind manner of speakingto them, and as no one likes to be treated rudely,they frequently refused to obey her. When sheaddressed either of them with " Child, you are notto make so much noise;" " Child, leave that alone;""Mr. Disagreeable, you care for no one but your-self;" the tone and language were so different to


44 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.their mother's, it is not surprising that they felt akind of pleasure in disobedience.Frederick, who was only a year and a halfyounger than Clara, particularly resented this con-duct. Foolish words and mutual vexations, there-fore, continually arose between them. It is truethat Frederick was not so useful a little personageas Clara, but he was an intelligent lad, and quitecapable of being an agreeable companion. ThusClara, who was so highly esteemed by her parentsfor many excellencies, by one fault alone continuallymarred the happiness of herself, and brothers, andsister.During the continued illness of Mrs. Travers,Clara began to discover that a good-natured mannerof speaking is much more likely to succeed than anill-tempered, commanding one. Her strong affectionfor her mother induced her to think of every planthat could quietly and happily employ her brothersand sister; and each day that she did so, she foundthat they listened to her requests with more docility,and appeared more ready to oblige her.As soon as Clara gained her mother's permission,she wrote to her father, to entreat him to return, andalso to her aunt Elwyn, her mother's only sister,who resided in Devonshire. Mr. Travers was inthe north of Scotland at the time; he could nottherefore return for more than a week after the


CLARA TRA VERS. 45letter was despatched; nor could Clara hope to seeher aunt for four or five days.Meantime, the affectionate little girl nursed hersick mother with unceasing attention. At the leastmovement of Mrs. Travers during the night shewas up and ready to support her aching head, orto offer refreshing liquids to allay her feverishthirst. During the daytime she never left hermother's room without asking whether she couldbe spared; and when her mother slept for a shorttime, her noiseless step passed and repassed the bedwithout risk of awakening her. She planned severalexcursions for her brothers and sister, to removethem from home. One day they were sent withthe nurse to dine in a distant wood, and the happychildren, laden with baskets of provisions, salliedforth in high glee, declaring they would fill theirempty baskets, on their return, with wild-flowers forher and mamma. Another day she surprised theboys with fishing-nets, which she had made in hermother's darkened chamber. Rods were soon con-trived, and then the eager boys marched off withthe old gardener to a piece of water, two milesdistant, where sticklebacks and minnows were tobe found sporting and swimming in shoals. Athird day she gave the children half her pocket-money, to buy rabbits and guinea-pigs at a neigh-bouring farmer's, and where they were sure te


46 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.be amused for hours. Sails for their boats werecut out and hemmed by her nimble fingers, paperfound for their kites, reins for their horses, and, inshort, everything was contrived that could employthem out of doors.The day before aunt Elwyn arrived, the weatherunfortunately became rainy, and the children wereobliged to remain in the house. Clara was puzzledto find a quiet occupation for them. At first shethought of employing them in mending the brokentoys by joining and gluing, but that soon proved toonoisy, for Edgar liked hammering better than any-thing else. She hesitated to lend them her paintingbox,-that box which had been the purchase ofnearly a year's savings, but she looked at the pouring.rain which prevented her brothers from playing inthe garden, and offered it to them. She beggedthem to be careful not to dip the paints in the water,nor to rub one cake of paint on another. Both theboys were pleased with the thought of using Clara's"real good paints i" and after Clara had sketched apicture for Edgar, and promised him a knife if heonly would learn to speak low, she turned to herlittle sister Rosa, and endeavoured to persuade her toamuse herself in the nursery. "No, no, Clara," saidRosa, "I like to be here best, because baby is asleep,and I have nothing to do there. I will not makemamma ill. I will be very quiet, and then dear


CLARA TRA VERS. 47mamma will not hear me, and I may sit at her doorsometimes if I like, because then I can hear herspeak."Clara immediately gave up urging her sister toleave the room, which was on the same floor as hermother's, and giving her a few playthings, she lefther to attend to Mrs. Travers. She sat with hermother for an hour, and was thinking how happilyshe had occupied her brothers and sister, whenEdgar's loud voice struck her ear, and made hermother start from her short sleep, "Do not befrightened, dear mamma !" exclaimed Clara. "It isonly Edgar, and you know he always speaks loud."She ran out of the room to still the uproar, whenthe first thing she saw was Edgar struggling withFrederick, the mug of water upset on the table, andher paint box,-her beautiful paint box-filled withwater. Frederick was striving to prevent EdgarSfrom touching the pallet, and both the boys weredisputing as loud as they could. "You troublesomechildren!" exclaimed Clara, with her voice raised,and crying from vexation. "You are the rudest,the most disagreeable boys in the world; I will neverlend you anything again. You spoil everything thatI have!"" Oh! oh! Clara, that is not true," repliedFrederick. "You know that I do not injure yourthings; I did not upset the water, Elgar did it in


48 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.trying to snatch the pallet, which I told him he mustnot use without washing, because all the colours wereso mixed, that he would have spoiled the paints if hehad rubbed them on it. I could not help his snatch-ing the pallet, I tried to save your paints, Clara."" Well, I only wanted to make a dark cloudy skyto my drawing," said Edgar: "I forgot what Clarasaid about rubbing the paints. I am sure I did notmean to upset the water.""I don't care what you meant! " replied Clara,angrily, " only see what you have done," and stoop-ing, she drew out her paints from the box, soddenedwith the water, and sticking to one another. " I amsure," she continued, "nobody has such disagreeablebrothers and sisters as I have. I wish mamma hadkept you at school all the holidays "" Well," said Fred, "if you will go on speaking socrossly when I wish to help you, I shall not scrapethe paints, nor do anything else; I shall go downstairs."" I am not disagreeable, I am not naughty," saidlittle Rosa; "I have been sitting here playing withmy doll: you should not call me disagreeable, Clara."Clara did not listen to either Fred or Rosa. Shewas angry, and therefore unjust. Neither childrennor grown up persons can have sense or reflectionenough to be just when they allow themselves to bein a passion. Clara continued railing against both


CLARA TRA VERS. 49her brothers, though Fred had not been to blame inthe least. Edgar, who really felt sorry at the disaster,which his eagerness and self-will had occasioned, wassilently endeavouring his best to repair the mischief,but as he met with nothing but angry words, hisgood feeling (for he was quite a child) soon vanished,and throwing down the brushes, he ran out of theroom after his brother.Rosa looked at her sister, half afraid to speak toher, and then suddenly putting her little arms roundher sister's neck, she exclaimed, "Pray do not becross, Clara; Edgar is very sorry, and I'll help you.I'll give you my silver penny to buy a new paintingbox; so don't cry any more."Clara could not help laughing at the idea of asilver penny buying a half-guinea painting box; shekissed her good-natured sister, and muttered halfaloud, "Well, certainly it is no use crying about it."She then quietly put her wet paints on the mantel-piece to dry, and wiped the painting box and the table.When she returned to her mother, she found herlooking very ill, and far more agitated than when shehad left her. Mrs. Travers had heard the loud talk-ing and Clara's angry voice, but she did not inquirethe cause. She felt too ill for any conversation. Ac-customed when in health to watch over the conductof her children to one another, to encourage theirgood feelings, and quickly to settle their little dis-4


50 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.putes, the idea of being unable to continue her careof them was exceedingly painful. She had hopedthat Clara's strong attachment to herself, which hadled her to take gieat pains to amuse her brothersand sisters, would have also gradually habituated herto bear good-humouredly the little provocations thathappen in a young family; but now she could onlysigh, and grieve that she could not alter a conduct,which, notwithstanding Clara's many good qualities,rendered her really unamiable.Every spare minute of that afternoon and thenext was spent by Clara, or her brothers, in watchingfor their aunt Elwyn's arrival. At length a carriagestopped, and the gentlest of knocks made Clara'sheart beat with joy. Her aunt had arrived, andhalf Clara's anxiety was over. From that timeClara had no more trouble in providing for thequiet of her mother, by planning occupations forthe children. Mrs. Elwyn arranged everythingfor the comfort of her sister, and the happinessof the young people. Her nephews and niecesobeyed her as if she were their mother, because,like her, she was always gentle, affectionate, and just.The doctors assured Mrs. Elwyn that change ofair was absolutely necessary to promote her sister'srecovery, as well as perfect quiet from the noise of acountry town, and a young family.. Mrs. Elwyn,therefore, only waited for the return of Mr. Travers


CLARA TRA VERS. 51to propose to her sister, her immediate removal, byshort and easy stages, to Devonshire.When Mr. Travers arrived, and saw the wastedform of his beloved wife, he entreated her to agree toMrs. Elwyn's proposal. He tried to remove everyobjection, and said he would immediately defer oneof his intended journeys, that during her absence hemight be at home as much as possible.Mrs. Travers, still agitated, urged that she couldnot bear the idea of leaving the children. Clara,who knew that the doctors had declared that therewas little hope of recovery, unless Mrs. Traversfollowed their advice, earnestly begged her mothernot to think of her brothers and herself, assuringher that they would contrive to make themselveshappy; seeing her mother shake her head, shestooped over her, and whispered, "Dear mamma,why do you refuse us ?""If I tell you, my dear child," replied Mrs.Travers, " I shall pain you, and I should feel sorryto do that,-you who have been so long my tenderlittle nurse, my dear active little friend."" Is there anything that I can do, dear mamma,that will persuade you to go with my aunt Elwyn?"again inquired Clara." Yes, my love, there is," answered Mrs. Travers." Oh, what is it?" said Clara anxiously." Promise to try to be gentle, kind, and forbearing42


52 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.to your brothers and Rosa, and then, dearest Clara,I can be content to leave them to your care."The colour mounted in Clara's cheeks, and thetears started in her eyes, as she remembered herangry feelings, and angry tones a few days before." Mother," said she, her voice half choked withemotion, " I know I am often wrong, but I will tryto be as gentle as you wish me to be. Only, dearmamma, go with my aunt, and you shall see thatI can be trusted."" I will, I will, my love," softly answered Mrs.Travers, as she pressed her daughter's hand, andsunk her head on her pillow, exhausted with theshort conversation.The next day preparation was made for the depar-ture of Mrs. Travers. Without bustle or noise,Clara arranged and packed everything that wasnecessary for her mother's comfort.Mr. Travers accompanied his wife and sister partof the journey, and when he returned, he foundClara making tea for her brothers and sister, andin spite of Clara's red eyes, they all looked cheerfuland smiling." Why, my dear Clara, you will be quite a littlemamma to them," said he, as he patted her cheek,and placed his chair beside her." Will mamma stay a long time away?" inquiredFred.


CLARA TRAVERS. 53" I do not know," replied Mr. Travers; "if yourmamma hears that you are all happy and good-tempered at home, she will most probably stay withyour aunt for two months, that she may return homestrong and well."" Oh, papa!" exclaimed Frederick, "I should beunhappy if our foolish little quarrels were to makemamma come home before she is quite well. I amsure I should like her to stay till she is able towork with us in the garden, as she used to do. Howhappy we were then!"" Yes, we were indeed," said Mr. Travers, " andthat these pleasures may come again, we must alltry to make one another as happy as we can."The children were very glad of their father'sassistance that evening, in scheming amusementsfor them. Dull at parting with their mother, theyfelt rather disinclined to amuse themselves withtheir usual occupations; but Mr. Travers soon setthem to work, and with cardboard and compasses,jack straws and chess, the evening passed pleasantly.Clara knew not half the difficulties she should meetwith, when she promised her mother to strive to begentle and forbearing. She had lost the occupationwhich had constantly employed her for the last fewweeks, and she often felt listless from the want ofemployment. This did not increase her good-humour,when little vexations arose. It certainly was pro-


54 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.yoking to see her frock torn by Edgar's rough pu1Jand her best drawing spoilt by Rosa's upsetting theinkstand over it. She could not always rememberher promise, or consider that she herself, when afew years younger, had been equally annoying toothers. Clara strove hard, however, to bear thesetrials well, and if she did not always succeed, shedid very frequently, and the consciousness of doingright, and a smile or nod from her father, rewardedher for her self-command.When the holidays were over, and her brotherswent daily to school, she found it much easier to passthe day without ill-temper, while the few hours thatthey were at home morning and evening were asource of real pleasure to her. Tired of being alone,she was always glad when five o'clock came, andhaving no other companion near her own age, shebegan to treat Frederick with far more consideration.Frederick's attachment to his sister quickly in-creased. He naturally felt both proud and pleasedto be the partner of all her little schemes, and to seeher assisting him in his own occupations. If Frederickwere drawing out wheels for his cardboard coaches,Clara's neat hand cut out the delicate spokes: if akite were to be made, Clara superintended the paste,or devised the ornaments. Still it is not surprisingthat Clara, so long accustomed to her mother'ssociety, should desire older companions than her


CLARA TRAVERS. 55brothers. Her father, observing how much shemissed her mother, gave her leave to invite occa-sionally their neighbours, the Miss Hargraves, whowere a year or two older than Clara.With these young people, Clara and her brotherspassed many a pleasant evening; for Sophia andEllen Hargrave took an interest in all their occu-pations, and were ever ready for a good game ofplay, or a quiet amusement at the table, as eitherseemed most agreeable to the rest of the party.Edgar liked them, because they admired his rab-bits; Frederick, because they were never tired oflooking at his little cabinet of shells and minerals;and Rosa said they were " kind girls," becausethey joined her in playing with the baby-house.The letters from Mrs. Travers were not at firstvery cheering. Her illness had been so severe thata long time was required to restore her to health,but she wrote in the most animated manner of herdelight at hearing from Mr. Travers of the dailyaffectionate conduct of Clara to the younger chil-dren. Each letter expressed her earnest desire toreturn to them when she was sufficiently restoredto do so. At length, after an absence of threeionths, Mr. Travers had the great pleasure of hear-ing that the sea air had proved so highly beneficial,that Mrs. Travers would no longer delay her returnto her beloved family, and that she intended to be


56 TRAITS OF CHARACTER,with them in a few days. The hippy childrenclapped their hands with joy, and eagerly asked theirpapa the day and the hour. Tuesday evening aboutfive was the time fixed, and now nothing was thoughtof but preparations for dear mamma's return. LittleRosa busied herself in washing her doll's things, thatthe doll might look new and clean. Edgar and Fre-derick weeded their mamma's favourite flower-bordeywith double care; and Clara (who longed to surpriseher mamma with her progress in music) practisedher last new tunes with additional zeal. Tuesdayarrived,-a warm, delicious September day. Longbefore the evening, Clara had ornamented each par-lour with flowers, the sweetest and gayest she couldfind; the boys had swept the gravel walks, till notone loose pebble could be seen; and the doll arrangedin her best had been placed in the window to watchfor mamma. The last half hour was appearing verylong, when Clara proposed that tea should be laidout in the arbour, her mother's favourite spot, fromthe beauty of the view that it commanded. Thebusy children soon conveyed the large arm-chair andthe footstool from the parlour to the arbour. Edgarcarried off the great tea-board, Clara followed withcups and saucers, and in a short time everything wasin readiness.The pinafores were flung off, and the expectinglittle family had now nothing to do but to stand upon


CLARA TRA VERS. 57the garden seats, and watch over the low holly hedgefor the first sight of the stage-coach.The nloment it was seen turning the corner of theroad, and that the hand and white handkerchiefappeared extended from the coach-window, the chil-dren darted to the front court with one joyful cry,"Mamma has come, mamma has come!" Yes, itwas their beloved mother, who in a moment clasped"them in her arms. With eyes overflowing with ten-derness, she looked first on one and then on another.Her joy at meeting her husband and children inhealth,-at seeing her daughter Clara, and all thesmiling happy faces around her, was greater thancan be described. She could only say, " My children,my children, this is happiness!" Rosa, however,soon made them all laugh; for, wondering at thetears on" her mother's cheek, she said very gravely," Mamma, dear, are you ill? what do you cryfor?"After a few moments, the children led then' mammainto the garden. Her quick eye soon perceived thefresh raked borders, the clean gravel walks, and allthe little improvements and changes that her childrenhad made. She thought drinking tea in the arbourwas delightful; and, whether it was that Clara madetea better than usual, she declared she had neverenjoyed any tea so much. In spite of his merrymood, Edgar contrived to speak low for that even-


58 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.ing, and all being bent on making each other happy,were in the gayest spirits.After tea, Mrs. Travers sent in Frederick for asmall box which she had brought from Devonshire.All were anxious to know the contents of this box.Edgar quickly produced his hammer to draw thenails which firmly closed the lid, and he had thepleasure of opening it.The first packet which Mrs. Travers drew forthwas a box of wooden animals for Rosa; the second, aparlour printing-press, with real types and inking-rollers, for Edgar; and the third, a box of compasses,rule, and pencil, for Frederick. The fourth packet wasmuch smaller than any, and Mrs. Travers gave it toClara, expressing a hope that she might like the con-tents. What could it be? The white wrapper wasquickly taken off, when a small box appeared; thisbeing opened, the treasure was concealed by a tintedpiece of paper and coloured cotton."" Oh! mamma, can this really be for me!" ex-claimed the delighted little girl, as a locket with abeautiful miniature likeness of her mother struck hereye. " And a hair chain too, your own hair, mamma;dear, dear mamma, are they both for me?"" Look, my love, and you will see," said Mrs.Travers.Clara drew forth the locket, suspended by thechain, from its cottony bed, and with a trembling


CLARA TRA VERS. 59voice read the following words, which were engravedon the back of the locket in very small but veryclear characters, "For the good daughter and thekind sister."" Then it must be for you, Clara," said Frederick."I am sure you have been a good daughter, and akind sister too. You have done all you could tomake us happy while mamma has been away, andwhat could you do more ?"" There, Clara, dear, you see there is no mistake,"said Mrs. Travers, as she smilingly kissed herdaughter, and placed the hair chain round her neck." Keep it ever, my dear, as a remembrance of yourmother's love;-still more, let it remind you howmuch that love was increased by your early strivingto cure yourself of your faults."


" --- --- J -- V-o -- 0-~- ----U 0, U U -HARRIET'S TRIALS.ON a fine summer evening, a party of little girlswere amusing themselves on the lawn before a coun-try house, which belonged to the father of one of thechildren.Two of the elder girls were playing at " LesGraces," and the younger ones were looking on,eager to see who would be the victor.They had kept up the game to eighty-seven; and" Now, Mary," and " Take care, Harriet," cried thelookers-on, as the arms of the players grew weary,and their aim became more unsteady. " I wonderwho will keep it up longest," said one of the youngerchildren to another; " I hope Mary Langham will."" I don't think she will," replied her companion;" Mary is always tired in these games before Har-riet is."" Why do you hope that Mary will win, Lucy?"" Oh!" said Lucy, "because I like Mary best,she is so good-natured."" Harriet is good-natured, too, sometimes," saidEmma.


HARRIETS TRIALS. 61" Yes, sometimes; but Mary is good-naturedalways."In her eagerness for Mary's success, Lucy passedcloser to the players, so close as to touch Mary'selbow, just as she was about to throw off the hoopfor the ninety-sixth time. It fell at her feet. " Youlittle tiresome creature!" cried Harriet, turningsharply round to Lucy; "you have spoiled ourgame just at the most interesting time; why couldyou not stand farther off?"" I am very sorry I spoiled your game, Mary;very sorry indeed," said Lucy, looking up in Mary'sface." It does not signify," replied Mary, gently; " Idare say I should have let the hoop fall by thistime, if you had not touched me, my arms are sotired."" Mine are not in the least tired," cried Harriet,exultingly, " I am just as ready to play now as Iwas at first. Come, Mary, let us begin again."" Perhaps some one else would like to play," saidMary, looking around at their companions." Elizabeth, come here, but make haste, I meanto conquer you all," said Harriet, laughing. " Nowstand back, you little ones, and don't spoil this game,as you did the last."At the sound of that hasty voice the youngerchildren retreated.


62 TRAITS OF CHARACTER."You need not be afraid, Harriet; no one wishesto stand near you," said Lucy.The emphasis on " you," made Harriet's colourrise to scarlet, and an angry retort rose to her lips,when Lucy's attention was diverted by. Mary's offerto assist her in making a daisy chain that shouldreach from the arbutus by the parlour window, tothe magnolia at the end of the lawn. Lucy gave ajoyful assent, and ran to gather her frock full ofdaisies, and shower them into Mary's lap as she saton the grass.Harriet went on with the game of " Les Graces,"but the pleasure of it was gone; for she was out ofhumour with Lucy, with herself, and her antagonist.First Elizabeth stood too near her, then she went toofar off, and then the fault was found to be in thesun, which shone full in her eyes, and dazzled her sothat she could not see what she was about. Eliza-beth drew back, and came forward, and finallychanged places: it would not do. Harriet's mur-murs continued till her wearied companions at lastrefused to play any more with one who exacted somuch compliance from others, and yielded so little inreturn." Besides, Harriet," said they, " you have had thehoops so long; some one else may like to play now;you do not consider that; you never do.""I never do, do I not, Miss Elizabeth?" said


HARRIETS TRIALS. 63Harriet, angrily, and colouring with indignation;" upon my word, you give me a very pretty charac-ter. Well, I will do one thing to please you all,however, I will go away, if I am so very disagree-able; you can do very well without me, I dare say,"and so saying, Harriet flung down the sticks andhoop with an air of contempt, and walked away inall the dignity of sulkiness. To her no small morti-fication, Harriet found her companions very much ofher opinion, that they could do exceedingly wellwithout her. The merry sound of their voices, andthe peals of joyous laughter, reached her ears throughthe screen of flowering shrubs that skirted the lawn,and divided it from a gravel walk, which Harrietpaced up and down for some time, in pride and sul-lenness. " I will not go back to them unless I amasked, I am determined," thought Harriet, " and theywill be glad to ask me, I know, because they willwant my help;" and she thought rightly, her helpwas wanted. Harriet was the readiest to invent, themost skilful to execute, the best player of old games,the cleverest at new ones. Besides all these agree-able talents, Harriet had many good qualities; shewas kind, generous, and sincere. What then waswanting to make her a pleasant companion? Shewanted one thing, without which all the talents andgood qualities in the world will not obtain for us thelove and good will of others; she wanted temper.


64 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.Harriet would do much for those she loved; shewould willingly assist them through any difficulty intheir work, or their play; she was ready to explainthe most knotty points in the French grammar; toplay over a difficult passage of music; and herabundant stock of toys was almost as much at theservice of her companions as at her own. But withall this readiness to oblige, Harriet failed in securingthe love of her associates. She was continually say-ing some hasty or unkind thing, in the irritation ofthe moment; not very seriously intended at the time,and forgotten five minutes after-or, if thought of,quickly apologized for, to herself, -" Because,"thought she, " though I was a little hasty and pas-sionate, every one knows I have a good heart." Thisphrase of a "good heart,"-and the habit of thinkinga good heart an excuse for a bad temper, Harriet hadacquired from a well-meaning but not very wise auntwith whom she had spent a considerable time duringthe absence of her mother from England. The twoideas at length became so confused in her mind, thatHarriet was in some danger of learning to think thata bad temper did not signify where there was a goodheart. It was fortunate for the little girl that thereturn of her mother saved her from a mistake thatmight have made her unhappy for life.Long and impatiently Harriet continued to paceup and down the gravel walk, listening to the voices


HARRIET'S TRIALS. 65of her playfellows, longing to be with them, but un-able or unwilling to conquer herself so far as to jointhem without a special invitation, that should spareher pride from confessing, though her good sensetold her, that she had been in the wrong. Such aninvitation, however, her companions were not in-clined to send. It is true they missed an active anduseful partaker of their sports; but they were alsorid of one who was frequently out of humour, unlessshe were allowed to have everything her own way.Gradually the voices died away, and were heardagain at intervals, and at a distance. The lawn, and" Les Graces," and daisy-chains, were abandoned forhide-and-seek; and Harriet listened to the voices ofsuccessful seekers raised high in merry exultation,and the laughing screams of the captives as theywere dragged in glee from their hiding-places, tillher pride fairly gave way. Harriet had just squeezedthrough the lilac bushes, and was boldly advancingto join the party, when little Lucy well nigh droveher back again by exclaiming, " Oh! here comesHarriet; I thought she wsuld be tired of being byherself." Fortunately, she was saved from thuspunishing herself in a second fit of ill-humour, bythe appearance of Mary Langham,-Mary the peace-maker, who, without possessing the half of Harriet'stalents, was always beloved by all who knew her,simply because she was invariably sweet-tempered,5


66 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.and willing to yield in small thlngs, and in greatalso, when duty did not stand in the way. Marywas so evidently glad to see her, and so good-naturedlyanxious to have Harriet and all the party on goodterms again, that it was not possible to resist herefforts to restore peace. The evening glided plea-santly away, and bid fair to end in harmony, whenan unfortunate blunder in a quadrille overset Har-riet's lately acquired good humour." There, I thought so, I knew how it would be, ifthose tiresome little things were allowed to dancewith us," cried Harriet, her voice and colour rising:"I never saw anything so stupid in my life; don'tyou know your right hand from your left, child?"continued she, turning angrily to Lucy." To be sure I do," said Lucy; " I made a mis-take; anybody might make a mistake for once,Harriet; and you need not be so very angry, norcall me stupid. I dare say you made mistakes some-times, when you were as little as I am."" Not such foolish mistakes as you make. I shouldnever have mistaken my right hand for my left; atany rate, if I did not know one from the other,I would sit down, and not throw other peopleout. It is too bad for one to spoil the pleasureof seven.""I think so too, Harriet, and therefore I adviseyou to sit down," said a calm voice from behind.


HARRIET'S TRIALS. 67It proceeded from Harriet's mother, who had enteredwhen her daughter's voice was at the loudest, andher cheeks at the reddest."It must have been a terrible mistake, indeed,to cause so much disturbance. What was it,Harriet ?"" Oh, nothing ma'am-I mean not much," saidLucy, pitying Harriet's confusion. "Let us beginagain, and I will try not to go wrong a secondtime."" I had rather not dance any more," said Harriet,with some appearance of sullenness."I had rather you should not dance either, inyour present temper," said Harriet's mother, in alow voice; "but as your sitting down would pre-vent others from dancing, I must beg you togo on."Harriet, who saw that her mother was displeased,did not venture to make any further objection. Shedid what she was required to do, indeed, but so un-graciously, that there was not one of the little partywho did not secretly rejoice when the hour for sepa-rating arrived. It did not escape Harriet's obser-vation, that her companions were glad to be ridof her. Even Mary shook hands with her morecoldly than usual, and tears of mingled sorrowand mortification stole down Harriet's cheeks, whenshe thought how eagerly she had anticipated this52


68 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.evening, and how different were her feelings at thismoment, from those of the morning. It was badenough to be conscious of her own folly; it wasstill worse to be obliged to talk about it. "AndI must talk about it when I see Edward, for hewill be sure to ask me if I spent a pleasant evening;and then if I say No, he will ask me why, and then Ishall be obliged to confess how ill-tempered I wasbefore Anne and Louisa." These uncomfortablethoughts were passing through Harriet's mind asshe slowly descended the stairs the next morning,and entered the room where her mother and sistersand her brother were at breakfast, with a pace sounlike her usual bounding step, that Anne aban-doned the defence of her basin of milk from thekitten, who was trying to put her head into it, andcame to ask her sister if she were not well? andEdward set down an untasted piece of honeycombto laugh at Harriet's tardy advance and discontentedface." Why, Harriet, my dear," said her brother, " haveyou left your senses upstairs with your nightcap ?You look as if you were walking in your sleep. Whatis the matter with you?"" Nothing," said Harriet, pettishly; and as shetook her usual place by her brother, she gave herchair a jerk round, so as to uresent her shoulder tohim.


HARRIET'S TRIALS. 69Hey what is the meaning of this ? and why amI condemned to see a shoulder instead of a face ? notthat I have any objection to a shoulder, when it istucked tidily into a sleeve as a shoulder ought to be,but I like a face better, because it tells tales; so letme look at yours, Harriet," said Edward, trying tolook into his sister's as he spoke."I suspect it is because the face tells tales, thatHarriet's is turned away at this moment," said hermother.At this observation, Harriet's tears, which hadbeen gathering from the moment she entered theroom, fell fast upon her plate."My dear Harriet," said her brother, changinghis tone, " I am sure, if I have said anything to vexyou, I beg your pardon. I was only joking: shakehands with me, and tell me all about your party atMary Langham's."Harriet gave her hand to her brother, but at theword " party," her tears flowed afresh."What! is there something wrong again? Oh!now I see how it was; some little damsel looked overher right shoulder when she ought to have lookedover her left, and Harriet set her right too hastily:that was it, was it not ?-and now she feels a littleashamed, eh, Harriet? "Edward's conjecture was so nearly correct, thatHarriet could scarcely help smiling, in spite of her


70 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.vexation; but, when he went on to tell her not tomind, that she would be wiser another time, and tothink no more about the matter, Harriet's motherinterrupted him."My dear Edward," said she, "you are givingyour sister the worst advice possible, although withthe kindest intentions. To avoid thinking of herfaults, will not teach Harriet to be wiser anothertime. Let her rather continue to think of them,till she can find out how it is that she, who is sowell disposed, can so often give pain to those wholove her, by her want of self-command."" I am sure I do not know, mamma," said Harriet,sighing; "no one can be more sorry than I am,when I have done wrong; I wish I could conquermy impatience.""Do you really wish it? " asked her mother."Oh, mamma, how can you ask such a question ?To be sure, I wish to get rid of my faults; and sodoes everybody, I suppose."" I suppose so too, provided they could get rid ofthem without any trouble: but they cannot be verysincere in the wish, or they would take the propermeans.""What are the proper means, mamma? If youwill tell me what I ought to do, I will do it; that is,I will try.""My dear child," said her mother, "the means


HARRIET'S TRIALS. 7rare so obvious, that you do not need my assistance tofind them out."" I might be silent when I feel inclined to give asharp answer, till I could control myself so far as togive a gentle one, or I might-""You need not look any further for a remedy, mydear sister," interrupted Edward. " You would notfind a better, if you were to try, from this momenttill to-morrow morning."" But it is not so very easy to hold one's tongue,when one is angry," said Harriet. "I assure you,mamma, I have tried sometimes, and I have not beenable to succeed." I know it is not easy," answered her mother; "Iknow it from experience.""From experience! you, mamma!" cried all thechildren at once. "Now you are joking; no oneever saw you cross, or heard you give sharpanswers.""You never did, I hope," replied their mother,smiling; "but when I was Harriet's age, I gavenearly as many sharp answers as she does.""Then, mamma, will you tell us, if you please,how you managed to cure yourself so completely ?"said Harriet: "perhaps I might succeed by thesame means.""I believe I was chiefly cured by the numberlessmortifications to which my unaccommodating temper


72 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.subjected me. I could not bear to find myself anobject of dislike to those around me. One circum-stance which occurred on the very day I attainedyour present age, Harriet, made so much impressionon me, that I set about my reformation from thattime in good earnest."" And what was that circumstance? Is it a story,and will you tell us ?" cried the two younger chil-dren, in a breath." It is not a story, Anne; you need not look soeager," said their mother, laughing; "but you shallhear all I have to tell, and that will not be much.Your grandfather and grandmother were going tospend the Christmas holidays at the house of a lady,with whom I thought myself a great favourite, andtherefore I expected to be invited to go with them,especially as two cousins, both younger than myself,were going. Other guests were expected, and amongthem a gentleman who had been a great traveller,and who had seen many things that were new andstrange to older and wiser persons than I was. I hadheard that this gentleman was particularly kind andcommunicative to young people; and I expected tohave a great deal of amusement as well as instruc-tion. You will easily believe that my disappoint-ment was very great, when I heard I was not to go,and my shame was still greater when my mother toldme her reason for not taking me. She said that her


HARRIET'S TRIALS. 73friend had a large family; and that she was sorry toadd, that both in my plays and studies I showed greatimpatience of contradiction and want of temper, andthat till I endeavoured to correct myself of thesefaults, she would not run the risk of making herfriends uncomfortable by the ill-humour of a child."" Poor mamma !" said Harriet; "and what didyou say? what did you do ?"" I said nothing; I felt the justice of my mother'sreproof; but when she was gone, I did what I sup-pose most little girls of twelve years old would havedone, on a similar occasion, I sat down and criedvery heartily."" Poor mamma !" repeated all the three children."Well, and then?" clustering round her as they spoke."And then," said their mother, smiling, "whenI had cried till I could cry no longer, it occurred tome that crying would not help me, but that I mightsave myself from future disgrace, and my motherfrom the pain of punishing me, by keeping a strictwatch over myself, and either be silent or walkaway, whenever I felt inclined to dispute abouttrifles, or give short answers, as you call them.""Now, mamma, tell us, if you will be so good,the first, the very first trial you made, and whetheryou won the victory," said Harriet, who had listenedwith the greatest interest to her mother's story." My first trial was made, if I remember rightly,


74 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.about half an hour after my father and mother hadleft the house. I had one of my frocks to mend,and while I was gone up-stairs to look for it, mylittle brother William opened my work-box, andtook out a ball of cotton for the kitten to play with.When I came down-stairs again, they were in themidst of their diversion; the kitten had unwoundthe whole ball of cotton, which was twisted roundevery chair and table in the room, and William hadtaken every pin out of my pincushion, and stuckthem in the sofa pillows."" The tiresome little creatures!" exclaimed Har-riet, with sparkling eyes, and mounting colour; " Iwould have -" She recollected herself, and stoppedshort; her mother smiled, and Edward and hersisters laughed outright." You would have been exceedingly angry, I daresay, as I was. I felt very much inclined to scold mybrother, and given the kitten a slap, but I am happyto say I did not. I won the victory, Harriet, andcontented myself with putting the kitten out of theroom. As to William, he was too young to under-stand why he should not divert himself with mywork-box as readily as with his own ball; so I care-fully took all the pins out of the sofa pillows, andstuck them in the pincushion once more, and everafter I remembered to turn the key of my box whenI was leaving William alone in the room."


HARRIET'S TRIALS. 75" That was better than getting into a passion, cer-tainly; but the worst of it is, I never think so till itis too late, and I cannot unsay what I have said,however sorry I may be."" No; but you can avoid committing a similarfault another time."" Yes," said Harriet, hesitatingly; " but,"-and atthis word " but" she made a long pause."But what, my dear?" said her mother, afterwaiting some time for the rest of Harriet's speech." I was going to say something, mamma, but I amafraid you will think it very foolish.""Let me hear it, however.""I was going to say-to ask-if-if-temper wasof such very great consequence-I mean when I-when people have good hearts, mamma ?"" I will not find fault with your expression, mydear," said her mother, smiling; "because, as yourmeaning is not, I believe, very clear, even to your-self, it is no wonder that your language shouldbe confused. Before I answer your question, Ishould like to know what you mean by a goodheart?"" Oh, mamma, I am sure you know very wellwhat I mean. Have you not often lie._J people sayof other people that their hearts were good, thoughthey were not very good-tempered."" Yes; I have heard many say so; but they spoke


76 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.without thinking, or they would not have made suchan assertion. If by a good heart you mean, love andkindness to others, the wish to be of servce to them,and to render them happy, harsh words and crosslooks are odd means for such a purpose."Harriet was silent for a few minutes, reflecting onwhat her mother said." But, mamma," said she at length, " I think-don't you think, that people who are not good-tem-pered may yet be willing to be of great service totheir friends."" By great service, I suppose you mean, theywould help their friends out of great dangers orgreat difficulties. Remember, my dear child, youmay not be called upon above once in your life forsuch exertions; perhaps, they may never be requiredof you; but you are called upon every day, almostevery hour, for some small service or trifling kind-ness. And if you are not obliging in little thingswhen it is in your power, how am I to believe youwould be in greater."" I would not believe any such thing," said Edward,"nor would any one else, I should think. Supposepapa had said to that poor fellow who tumbled intothe muddy pool, in Dagley Lane, the other day,-' My good friend, it is not worth my while to helpyou out of that ditch; but if you were soused overhead and ears in the river, I would fish you up with


HARRIET'S TRIALS. 77great pleasure.' What do you think the man wouldhave said?"" I should have said, I had rather you wouldpull me out of the ditch now, and I will take carenot to fall into the river,' " said Harriet." That would be the answer of most people, Ibelieve," said her mother. " And now, my dearchildren, I wish, if you have done your breakfasts,that you would find something else to do; we havetalked long enough )n this subject."Her mother's observations made a great impres-sion upon Harriet; for, although hasty and petulant,she was not self-willed. But she gave a despondingsigh, when she reflected how often she had resolvedto cure herself of impatience, and how ill she hadkept her resolution. " Only last year," thought she,"when I scolded Anne so terribly, for leaving mybird's cage open, and made her cry so loud, andwake poor Edward, who was so ill at the time, I didsay then I would never be in a passion again; andyet, though I am a year older, I am no better;indeed, I think I am worse. However, I will try.I recollect, when I first tried to sketch that greatash-tree at the end of the garden, I threw down mypencil, and said I should never do it; but mammasaid I could, if I persevered; and so I did-verywell, too, mamma said."Full of these good designs, Harriet went to water


78 TRAITS OF CHARACTERher flowers. Alas some one had been there beforeher, and Harriet's temper was put to the proof rathersooner than she expected. The first object that mether eyes was her sister Jane, a little girl three yearsold, mounted on a chair, busily employed in puttinga huge flaring dandelion into a pot. " See, howpretty !" said Jane, holding up the pot in exultation,as Harriet advanced."Very pretty, indeed," said Harriet; "but wheredid you get the pot, my dear ?"" There, I took out that ugly little bit of stick,"said Jane, pointing to something which lay at herfeet.Harriet stooped to pick it up, and what was herconsternation when she discovered that the "uglybit of stick" that Jane's busy fingers had grubbedup, was a cutting from a very choice foreign plant,which had been given to her lately by a friend ofher mother's; her precious Linnea Borealis, thatshe had received so joyfully, was watching with somuch anxiety, and which was just beginning tostrike root." You little naughty creature! have I not toldyou a hundred times--" The sentence was begun,but not finished. "I will not, I am determined Iwill not fail the very first time," said Harriet; and,unable to trust her fortitude with the sight of thedandelion, which poor little Jane, her face dimpled


HARRIET'S TRIALS. 79all over with smiles, still held up to be admired, sheran fairly out of the room."Bravo !" said her brother Edward, who had seenwhat passed through a glass door; "but you shouldnot have run away, Harriet, my dear; it is so in-glorious to retreat.""Not when the danger is beyond our strength,"said his mother. " Harriet has done wisely to retreatthis time; the next, there will be no occasion for it."" It is but a shabby sort of victory that is gainedby running away, however," said Edward; " thereis no glory in it." Now, as it happened that it hadcost Harriet a good deal of effort even to run away,Edward's remark appeared to her highly unjust, andshe told him so, in a much louder tone than therewas any occasion for. Edward was a very good-natured boy, and extremely fond of his sister; buthe could not always resist the temptation of teasingher. He proposed that, like victors of old, Harrietshould be decorated with a crown, but of what thecrown should be composed he could not exactlydetermine. Laurel, parsley, oak leaves? No; noneof them would do; they were too common; andthere was something so uncommon, so exalted, innot getting into a passion with a baby, about a weedwith a hard name, that it deserved as uncommon areward. " A bright thought, a bright thought!"cried Edward, jumping up, and capering about the


80 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.room; "a wreath of dandelions it shall be, whichwill be uncommon, and appropriate; besides, it willbe a peaceful emblem too, as it should be, for itputs one in mind of nothing but an old cow chewingthe cud in a meadow. A capital thought I'll goand gather some directly, and little Jenny shall helpme. No; it is not a capital thought; it is a verystupid one," said Edward, suddenly recollecting him-self, at the sight of Harriet's look of mortification."Mother, don't you think me very silly? Harriet,I am sure you must think me very ill-natured: areyou angry with me ?""Yes, a little," said Harriet, ingenuously; " but Iwill get over it, and without running away thistime."Her mother smiled, and held out her hand. "Itold you, you would not find it necessary the secondtime."Days and weeks, many weeks passed away, inwhich Harriet maintained sundry battles with herprompt tongue and irritable temper; and if she wasnot always quite victorious, she had at least thesatisfaction of finding her task less and less difficultwith every succeeding trial.One day, Harriet found her brother engaged inreading the life of Dr. Franklin, and when he cameto that part where Franklin speaks of the methodhe took to correct himself of some of his faults,


HARRIET'S TRIALS. 81Edward showed the passage to Harriet, and askedher how she would like to keep such a list, andwhether she should have the courage to make ablot against the word "mildness," every time shefailed in that particular.Harriet said she thought she should have thecourage, but that she did not see the use of it." You know, Edward," said she, " that I have keptmy resolution pretty well hitherto. You say yourself,that I am not half so apt to give cross looks andsharp answers as I was a month ago, and it wouldbe very disagreeable to see everything one didwrongly written down.""So it would," said Edward; "but I think weshould take more care for that very reason. I knowthat I, for one, should hate to have a long row ofblots staring me in the face every time I opened mydesk. I'll tell you what we will do; I want tocure myself of my slovenly habits. I have lost tworulers, and three black-lead pencils, within the lastfortnight, because I never think of putting anythingaway after I have used it; and if mamma had notluckily come into my room yesterday morning, afterI was gone to school, papa's pocket compass that hehad lent me would have been spoiled. I left it inlittle Will's reach, and he was just going to ham-mer away at the glass to get out that funny shakingthing. I will make two lists, one for myself, and6


82 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.one for you; I will keep yours, and you shall keepmine."Edward took two sheets of large paper, and ruledseven perpendicular lines, which he crossed by hori-zontal lines; and at the head of each column, hewrote the name of a day in the week. On the leftof the first line he wrote ORDER in small capitals inhis own list, and MILDNESS in his sister's.Every time Edward left his books or pencils, &c.lying about, after he had done with them, Harrietwas to make a dot in ink; and when Harriet allowedherself to be made angry, by any of those triflingdifferences of inclination or opinion which must al-ways occur, when two or three people are constantlytogether, Edward was to place a dot on her paper.When the lists were made out, Harriet carriedthem into the room where their father and motherwere sitting, and explained the plan to them. Theyboth smiled, and their father said that he thoughtit would be a very good plan until Edward andHarriet had acquired the habit of order and gentle-ness of speech, but, then, it would be better to laythe lists aside, lest they should accustom themselvesto censure, and find fault with each other; and alsobecause, as they grew older, they must learn toexercise self-control without any such mechanicalhelps." If at the end of a month, you can show me a.


HARRIET'S TRIALS. 83clean page for a week, Edward," continued hisfather, "I will give you that book, The Wondersof Ellora,' that I refused to lend you last week, be-cause you were so careless."Before the first six days of the month were gone,Edward and Harriet were almost tempted to giveup their work in despair; the blots were so nume-rous: in the second week there were two dayswithout a blot, in Harriet's journal, and three inEdward's. On the third they got on to Wednesday;late on Wednesday morning, something like a dis-pute arose about the globe, which Edward had neg-lected to return to his father's study, after using it.Edward said, this ought not to be reckoned a pieceof carelessness, because, as he was going to use theglobe again after dinner, it was not worth while toput it away: but Harriet replied, it was just as easyto fetch it out of the study, as to leave it on theirmother's work-table, where the little ones could getat it; "I believe," added she, "that one of them hasmeddled with it already, for here is a great scratchthrough the island of Juan Fernandez, that was nothere before, I am almost sure.""You had better be quite sure, before you findfault," said Edward; "now I think that scratch wasalways there.""Always there! how can you talk so foolishly:-but I am talking foolishly myself," said Harriet, sud6a


84 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.denly recollecting herself,-" and there is a blot forme-what a pity! I did think I should have had aclean page to-day."" And a blot for me," said Edward; " it was onlyan excuse to say I should want the globe again afterdinner: I meant to have put it away, but the truthis, I forgot it."The last week was a triumphant one for both; allwere unanimous in declaring that not an angry wordhad been heard from Harriet, though William andJane twice upset her water-glass, when she wasdrawing; and repeatedly turned out the contents ofher work-box, in search of some trifling article toamuse themselves with; nor was the whole housedisturbed, when Edward was going to school, becausehis books, or rulers, or maps, or gloves were not to befound in the proper place." A clean page, I see by your face," said his father,when Edward entered his room on the last morning ofthe month. " I expected it, for I have been watchingyou, and there is the book I promised to give you."Edward thanked his father, took up the book,admired the plates; thanked him again, but still helingered, and looked as if he wished to say something." Well, what is it, my boy? what are you going tosay?" asked his father, who had been observing hismotions."I was going to say, that if you would not be dis-


HARRIET'S TRIALS. Spleased, I should like to give this book to Harriet.If I have learned to be more orderly, the merit ishalf hers, I'm sure; I should often have forgottenif she had not reminded me; and besides, father, itis much harder work to keep watch every day andevery hour over an irritable temper than to get ridof a slovenly habit.""I think so, too, Edward," said his father; "sup-pose you go and talk to your mother about it, youwill find her up-stairs."Up-stairs Edward went, and there he found hismother arranging some beautiful plants, in a verypretty ornamental flower-stand." Oh, that is for Harriet, I know! thank you,mamma," said Edward. " I will go and call herdirectly, shall I?" And without waiting for ananswer he ran down-stairs again, taking six stairsat a jump.We need not describe Harriet's pleasure on thereceipt of her mother's gift; for which of our youngreaders has not felt the pleasure that a well-meritedreward can bestow? and who does not feel that thegreatest pleasure of all is the approbation of those whogrieve to punish and are glad to praise ?w sJIJps-


FRANCES MEADOWS; OR,CHARACTER."CAN any of you really think it possible that EmmaMunro will gain the prize ? " inquired Marian Grantof some of her companions, with whom she waswalking in the garden a week after they had returnedto school."I not only think it possible, but very probable,"replied Frances Meadows. "If my friend Emmahad not so kind and complying a disposition, shewould have gained a prize before now.""But she has no energy, no determination toexcel," continued Marian; " she never attempted towin double marks in the journal by extra exertion,or the upper places in the classes."


FRANCES MEADOWS. 87"No, she has not hitherto attempted," saidFrances; "but she has always given Mrs. Hewsonsatisfaction, and now that she knows her fatherwishes her to gain a prize, and that the thoughtof his return from India animates her exertions, Ihave no doubt she will earnestly strive to gain one.I remember, before the holidays, she used to be upby four o'clock in the morning, in order to finishthat large drawing to please her father.""I wonder at that," observed Marian; "becauseshe was frequently not down-stairs until after thebell had done ringing, and therefore lost her markfor punctuality.""Yes," said a little girl who was present, "becauseEmma often stayed to tie a frock, or to fold upa night-gown of some lazy girl.""Well," said Marian, "I may be wrong, but 1shall indeed be surprised if Emma wins the prize.You know, Frances, it is not sufficient to accomplishall that we have to do tolerably correctly, as I grantEmma has done; so many of us do that, that there isno chance of the prize without continued exertion.Oh, Emma has neither the talent nor the persever-ance; she is a poor dawdle !"Upon hearing this opinion of her friend, Francesturned indignantly away, while many a little voiceexclaimed: "If you were a little girl, Marian, youwould love Emma as we do." "Mrs. Hewson does


88 TRAITS OF CHARACTER.not think Emma a dawdle." "I do not like you forspeaking so of Emma!"In the midst of this dispute Mrs. Hewson joinedher pupils. They instantly repeated to her theconversation, and pressed her to give them her ownopinion of Emma, adding, " Make haste, ma'am, be-cause Emma is coming up this walk, and we shouldnot like her to hear what Marian said of her.""And why not?" inquired Mrs. Hewson. "Ifthere be any truth in Marian's observations, it maybe of service to Emma to hear them. I supposethose of her companions who imagine her to havesuch grievous faults, would be glad to help herto cure them." And Mrs. Hewson beckoned toEmma, and told her in a kind tone what the girlshad been talking about."Now, my dear," said she, "there is some littletruth in Marian's remarks, though far more in thoseof your warm-hearted friend. I have sometimes seenyou (tempted by your good-nature) assist the idleand careless, at the great risk of neglecting your ownduties. There is no doubt, that if you had tried forthe prize in the past half-year, your present acquire-ments would have been far greater."After this conversation, Marian observed withsurprise, and Frances with delight, the continualexertions that Emma made to gain the highest marksfor every species of study and acquirement. Marian


FRANCES MEADOWS. 89and two other girls were her competitors, and theystrove with such success, that it was difficult todecide which of the four was likely to win theprize.The journal was kept in the following manner:the pages had different titles, such as "attentionto lessons," "neatness and order," "punctuality,""amiable deportment," " music," " French," " arith-metic," &c. On one side of the page welme arrangedin a column, the names of the girls, with lines drawnfrom each across the page, and on these lines weremade certain marks according to the merit of eachgirl. Thus, if a French exercise were fairly done,one mark was awarded, two if very well, and threeif the exercise were written without a single fault.The highest number of marks at the end of the half-year, of course decided the prize, which was givenfor general application and good conduct.There were several small prizes given by themasters for success in particular studies, but amongthe elder girls that which was to be earned bygeneral success in all, was alone considered the prizeof honour.Emma found that notwithstanding her earnestexertions to secure the prize, she had quite timeenough to perform many a good-natured office forher companions. It was true she would no longerlisten to the petitions of the idle and undeserving,


go TRAITS OF CHARACTER.but she still dressed many a doll for a little friend,or mended the torn frock of some unlucky child.The indastrious find more spare time from theirnecessary occupations than can be readily imaginedby those who idle their time away.Emma Munro, in striving for the prize, became,if possible, a still greater favourite with her com-panions on account of her constant good-feelingtowards her rivals. Much as she wished for theprize, she never felt jealous at their success. Ithappened one day that Caroline Roberts, one of thefour girls who were foremost in the journal, wassuddenly called home for a day by the illness of arelation, and Emma proposed that during her absenceno marks should be counted, that Caroline mightnot, by a misfortune, lose her position with regardto herself, Marian, and the other girl. Her com-panions consented, Marian observing:"I am sure, Emma, if the prize were for the justand the generous, you would be quite certain to winit; and now I know you better, I find I am quitewrong about your not being as capable as any of usto gain any prize you choose. If I do not win thefirst prize myself, I hope you may."" Thank you, Marian," said Emma, smiling withhonest delight at the kind expression of a wish thatwas precisely the same as her other rivals had madeto her.


FRANCES JM1EADO WS. 91Towards the close of the half-year, the anxiety ofthe girls upon the all-important subject of the prizenaturally increased.As Miss Watson, the teacher, evening after even-ing added to the long rows of marks, and laughinglyshrugged her shoulders at the approaching labour ofcounting them, many an eager eye attempted tojudge, by the length of the rows, of the comparativeamounts. Among those who usually tried to securethe next place to Miss Watson, that they might havea better chance of deciding, no one was more eagerthan Frances Meadows. She was far more anxiousfor Emma than Emma was for herself; for Emmawas so convinced that she had exerted her powers asher father and Mrs. Hewson had wished her to do,that a modest self-approbation kept her calm evenunder the idea that a disappointment might awaither.The school was to break up on a Thursday, andthe journal was to be closed on the Monday pre-ceding. It happened that evening, while MissWatson was adding the last marks to the journal,that Emma was engaged in putting her little sisterDora to bed, and Frances, as was frequently thecase, answered for her. When Marian's name wascalled, and the number of marks demanded for herlast French exercise, to Mrs. Hewson's surprise,Marian answered, "None I"


92 TRAITS OF CHARACTER."But, ma'am," said Frances, "Emma told me tosay that Marian deserved three. She completelymisunderstood the rule which M. Hubert had givenus, and after he had left us, and she had found outher mistake, she wrote her exercise without a singlefault."When Mrs. Hewson heard this, she examinedMarian's exercise, and gave her the three markswhich she justly deserved.After the names had all been gone over, and everymark awarded, the journal was by some chance lefton the side table, instead of being immediately lockedup in a drawer. During this time, many of the girlsturned over the leaves and examined it. Franceswas the last that evening who tried to guess the posi-tion of the different parties, and she sat earnestlylooking over the pages, till she found her companionshad retired to rest."To-morrow morning, Frances, your anxiety foryour friend will cease," said Mrs. Hewson, as shebade her good-night: " Miss Watson and myself,with two of your companions, will count the journaldirectly after breakfast."The following morning, Frances was so busy inattempting to pack up several things before break-fast, that she was unusually late in her bed-room.As she was fastening a cord round her desk, whichshe had just packed in brown paper, she heard a


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122 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. buffalo meat, and the whole party sat down in a circle, waiting until the food should be ready. Ruth was a brave child, although the first sight of these strangers had alarmed her. And when she heard the cheerful sound of their voices, she ventured to peep out from her hiding place to look at them. She saw a comfortable fire, and the little Indians romping and rolling about. The men and women sometimes joined in their games, catching hold of them and kissing them. Ruth, as she watched them, thought they did not look so fierce or so frightful as she had believed them to be. "Perhaps," thought she, "they have not killed my father, and do not want to kill us. They look kind; perhaps they would be kind to us, and give us some of their food:" and she watched them a little longer. Grace and Martin, too, could not refrain from peeping out carefully through the bushes, to see what made the Indian children laugh so merrily; and finding no one came to meddle with them, by degrees they became bolder. Soon they saw the Indian women give some food to their children, and they also saw the children begin to eatit heartily. This sight made them feel their own hunger more and more. They longed for some of that broiled meat, and begged Ruth to go and ask for some food for them too. Ruth was now truly distressed. She, as well as



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14 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. Very well, I believe," answered Josephine, startled by her father's question, for she had not thought of the bird, and she ran to fetch the cage to show him to her father. Alas! the poor bird was dead! Cold and stiff, it lay upon its belly, its wings stretched out, its beak open, its eyes covered with a white film. Josephine screamed, and wrung her hands. Her father and mother hastened into the room, and at once saw the cause of her grief. Unhappy bird !" exclaimed Mr. Gourlay, "how painful has been your death! If I had strangled you the day that I left home, you would only have suffered a momentary pang, whereas you have endured for many days the torments of hunger and thirst. Your death has, indeed, been a long and cruel agony!" Poor Mimi said Mrs. Gourlay, "it is fortunate that you are at length removed from so thoughtless a guardian." Her parents took the dead bird away, and Josephine, with her face hidden in her hands, could not move from the place where she stood. Shewould have given up her playthings, she would have recalled the days which she had passed so merrily and so thoughtlessly, to have brought back to life the departed Mimi, but it was too late. Mr. Gourlay had the bird stuffed, and placed in a



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62 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. "You need not be afraid, Harriet; no one wishes to stand near you," said Lucy. The emphasis on you," made Harriet's colour rise to scarlet, and an angry retort rose to her lips, when Lucy's attention was diverted by. Mary's offer to assist her in making a daisy chain that should reach from the arbutus by the parlour window, to the magnolia at the end of the lawn. Lucy gave a joyful assent, and ran to gather her frock full of daisies, and shower them into Mary's lap as she sat on the grass. Harriet went on with the game of Les Graces," but the pleasure of it was gone; for she was out of humour with Lucy, with herself, and her antagonist. First Elizabeth stood too near her, then she went too far off, and then the fault was found to be in the sun, which shone full in her eyes, and dazzled her so that she could not see what she was about. Elizabeth drew back, and came forward, and finally changed places: it would not do. Harriet's murmurs continued till her wearied companions at last refused to play any more with one who exacted so much compliance from others, and yielded so little in return. Besides, Harriet," said they, you have had the hoops so long; some one else may like to play now; you do not consider that; you never do." "I never do, do I not, Miss Elizabeth?" said



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0OSEPHINE. 15 glass case, with the words DUTY first, and PLEASURE afterwards," written in large letters underneath it. Whenever Josephine's eyes were turned towards the cage, they filled with tears. She felt, when she caught a glimpse of dead Mimi's yellow feathers, as if she should never be happy again. She begged her father to remove the bird, but he refused to do so. When I see," said he, "that you have really become more careful, I will remove it; but you have been guilty of repeated acts of gross negligence, and it is for your good that something to warn you of the consequences of such conduct should be constantly before your eyes." Josephine could not forget her faults. She continually heard the different persons of the family as they passed the case, say, with a sigh, "Poor Mimi I you suffered a terrible death." But she gradually became more careful, for she tried to improve herself. She often denied herself gratifications in order not to neglect her duties, and she found that the pleasure of knowing that all her duties had been performed was the greatest happiness she could enjoy. When her parents observed that for a long time she had neglected no duty, they agreed that the sad case might be removed. One morning, when Josephine came down to breakfast, she perceived that it was gone. Now," said she, I am happy, for you no longer think me a careless little girl."



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58 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. ing, and all being bent on making each other happy, were in the gayest spirits. After tea, Mrs. Travers sent in Frederick for a small box which she had brought from Devonshire. All were anxious to know the contents of this box. Edgar quickly produced his hammer to draw the nails which firmly closed the lid, and he had the pleasure of opening it. The first packet which Mrs. Travers drew forth was a box of wooden animals for Rosa; the second, a parlour printing-press, with real types and inkingrollers, for Edgar; and the third, a box of compasses, rule, and pencil, for Frederick. The fourth packet was much smaller than any, and Mrs. Travers gave it to Clara, expressing a hope that she might like the contents. What could it be? The white wrapper was quickly taken off, when a small box appeared; this being opened, the treasure was concealed by a tinted piece of paper and coloured cotton. "" Oh! mamma, can this really be for me!" exclaimed the delighted little girl, as a locket with a beautiful miniature likeness of her mother struck her eye. And a hair chain too, your own hair, mamma; dear, dear mamma, are they both for me?" Look, my love, and you will see," said Mrs. Travers. Clara drew forth the locket, suspended by the chain, from its cottony bed, and with a trembling



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128 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. The current of the river was strong, and the two men had much trouble to bring the canoe in to the shore. At last, by drifting a little lower down the island, they were enabled to land. The three children flew to meet their father with outcries of joy, and he, equally delighted, hugged them all in his arms. My poor babies," said he, at last, you have been cruelly left, but I could not help it. How have you managed ? Have these Indians assisted you ?" Oh, yes, father, yes," said all the children, "they have given us food, and have warmed us at their comfortable fire." The man then broke from his children, and went up to the chief, who had not yet embarked, to thank him for his kindness. He told him that his canoe had been upset by accident, and that he had lost every thing that belonged to him, except a clasp-knife, which fortunately remained in the pocket of his waistcoat. This clasp-knife he pulled out, and presented to the chief, as a token of his gratitude to him and his people for their kindness to his deserted children. The Indian willingly received this useful present, and bidding the American and his children farewell, stepped in the canoe that was waiting for him, and proceeded with his people on their voyage. The American then placed his three children in the canoe that lie had come in. The children at once



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12 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. were stuck between the wires, and again Mimi and Josephine were good friends. "Kind little creature," said Josephine to herself, "he loves me as much as ever-he forgets all my unkindness to him !" Mimi was again as happy as he could be. About a month after this, it happened that Mr. and Mrs. Gourlay were obliged to take a distant journey into the country. Josephine," said they both to her, as they stepped into their chaise, remember Mimi-we trust him to your care." Josephine promised to remember him, and hardly were her parents gone than she ran to supply the cage with everything that the bird could want. At the end of eight days, she thought she should like to have some of her young friends to come and drink tea with her; and she had a merry little party. They played at blind-man's buff, at puss in the corner, and hunt the slipper, and at last they danced. When her young friends left her, Josephine went to bed quite tired. The next morning she awoke, thinking of the pleasure of the evening before; and while she was dressing, she asked the nurse to go and invite her young friends to come again directly after breakfast. But the nurse refused to go so early. It would be quite early enough, she said, if they came in the afternoon.



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CAROLINE. 17 But now you must stir, for your laziness, or fatigue, as you call it, has caused a great deal of mischief. While you have been idling here with the cat, the geese have been eating the summer cabbages, and the ducks the spinach, besides trampling down the young plants and the French-beans." Before Caroline could reply, she heard her mother's voice inquiring for her; and hastily turning the cat out of her lap, she ran into the garden. Too true was the news that William had given to her. The geese and ducks had left the grass-plot, and strayed into the kitchen garden, where she found them very busily employed in eating the vegetables. Out of a bed of fine summer cabbages, five or six only remained unhurt. The geese had eaten many of them to the very stump. The ducks were treading down the beans in hunting for slugs, and eating the spinach. "Tiresome creatures !" cried Caroline, "to give me all this trouble. Why could not you stop on the grass-plot where I put you? Get away, get away, I say; you cause more trouble than you are worth, this hot day;" and in an angry manner she began to drive them off the beds on to the paths. The ill-temper made the matter worse, for the birds being frightened, flew about in all directions, screaming and quacking; and Caroline losing all command of herself, picked up stones to throw at 2



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46 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. be amused for hours. Sails for their boats were cut out and hemmed by her nimble fingers, paper found for their kites, reins for their horses, and, in short, everything was contrived that could employ them out of doors. The day before aunt Elwyn arrived, the weather unfortunately became rainy, and the children were obliged to remain in the house. Clara was puzzled to find a quiet occupation for them. At first she thought of employing them in mending the broken toys by joining and gluing, but that soon proved too noisy, for Edgar liked hammering better than anything else. She hesitated to lend them her painting box,-that box which had been the purchase of nearly a year's savings, but she looked at the pouring. rain which prevented her brothers from playing in the garden, and offered it to them. She begged them to be careful not to dip the paints in the water, nor to rub one cake of paint on another. Both the boys were pleased with the thought of using Clara's "real good paints i" and after Clara had sketched a picture for Edgar, and promised him a knife if he only would learn to speak low, she turned to her little sister Rosa, and endeavoured to persuade her to amuse herself in the nursery. "No, no, Clara," said Rosa, "I like to be here best, because baby is asleep, and I have nothing to do there. I will not make mamma ill. I will be very quiet, and then dear



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"JOSEPHINE. 5 When Josephine's young friends came to see her, she liked to make them guess what beautiful things she had of her own-all her own; and when they could not find out, she would say to them, Do you know I have the prettiest canary bird in all the world. He is as yellow as gold, and he has a tuft of black feathers on his head. He is a male. I call him Mimi, because the man who sold him to me had given him that name. Come-will you come and see him?" Her young friends thought it a great treat to see Mimi. And Mimi was so obedient a little fellow, that, whenever his mistress wished, he would sing to them. Mimi was as happy as a little bird in a cage could be. The first thing in the morning came Josephine, with the box of rape and canary seed in one hand, and a cup of fresh water in the other. She carefully filled the seed-trough, and, after emptying the water-bottle, filled it again with the fresh water which she had brought. She spread clean sand at the bottom of his cage, and fastened on the wires fresh green weeds, such as groundsel and chickweed. But Mimi had other treats. Josephine put aside a piece of every cake or biscuit that was given to her; and sometimes she begged lumps of sugar from her mother to give him. As she always did everything for him herself, Mimi soon learned to distinguish her from the rest of the family. So soon as



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FRANCES MEADOWS, TRAITS OF CHARACTER, ETC. JOSEPHINE. "CANARIES to sell! Canaries to sell! who will buy canaries-pretty canaries?" Josephine Gourlay, a little girl eight years old, heard this cry. She ran to the window, threw it open, and looked out, first down the street, and then up the street. She saw a man carrying on his shoulder a large cage full of canary birds. He had that minute passed the door of her father's house. The canary birds looked so beautiful with their bright yellow feathers, they hopped so nimbly from perch to perch in the cage, and chirped so sweetly, that Josephine, quite delighted, called out, "Stop, man, I want to look at those little birds." "Buy a canary bird, miss ?" said the man. Oh I should like one very much," replied Josephine, "but I must not without leave. Stop a little, and I will go and ask my papa." The man placed his cage upon a post that stood at the corner of the street, opposite to Mr. Gourlay's 1



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RUTH, THE AMERICAN GIRL. 123 Grace and Martin, was painfully hungry; but should she risk the exposing of herself to the Indians ? On the other hand, she thought that when the Indians went away, she and her two companions must die with hunger. And this reflection at once alarmed and aroused in her sufficient courage to go to the Indians. "Have courage, dear children," said she, "and let us all go to these Red Indian people, and ask them for food." But Grace and Martin drew back, and both said, No, go alone, Ruth; we are afraid." "Do not fear," said the good Ruth: "these people are too kind to hurt us;" and she took hold of each by the hand, and tried to raise them from the ground. Get up, darlings, and come with me, while we are yet in time for the Indians to spare some of their food for us. I will take care of you." Grace and Martin still held back, and both began to cry. But Ruth would not let them pull their hands away, which they struggled to do. Come, make haste, the Indians have nearly finished their breakfast, and there will be none left for us," said Ruth again, earnestly. "I took care of you last night, and I will take care of you now. These people will not harm us-they look kind-let us try. We have done nothing to offend them, and they will be good to us." So saying, she moved



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JOSEPHINE. II Dear papa," said Josephine, try me but once again, and you shall see how careful I will be. I do love my Mimi so much." If so, why did you neglect him?" asked her father. You do not seem to be aware how great a pain the pang of hunger and thirst is." "Papa," said Josephine, "if you knew how sorry I feel for the pain I have given him, I am sure you would forgive me, and still continue to trust me. I shall never be happy without Mimi-dear Mimi." And she looked up at his cage, while the tears fell fast from her eyes. Well, Josephine," said her father, after hesitating for some time, between his fear for the bird and pity for his daughter, I believe you are sorry for your cruel neglect of Mimi, and I will once more trust him to your care; but never forget that he is a prisoner, and do not let me again have to reproach you with the cruelty of making him suffer the pains of hunger and thirst." Josephine kissed her father, but she could not find words to thank him. The attempt to speak seemed almost to choke her; for although she was rejoiced that Mimi was not to be taken from her, her grief for what she had done still weighed heavily upon her. Again the cage was decked with fresh groundsel and chickweed, again pieces of biscuit and sugar



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26 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. Henry. Well, Caroline," said he, how do you do? I have not forgotten you-see here is a paper of sticking-plaster which I have bought for you. How many wounds are there on your fingers?" Not one," said Caroline. Then my poor shirt is unmended," said Henry. Caroline made no answer. Her walk did not seem to give her much pleasure; and she returned home weary, and out of spirits. The next morning Henry tapped at her door, and heard, with considerable anger, when he inquired for his shirt, that it was not mended. But, after many bitter complaints, he was again persuaded to put up with a ragged shirt in silence. Caroline, as she looked upon the quantity of unmended linen which she had allowed to increase upon her hands, felt ready to cry. It wanted now but two days to her father's return; and it was absolutely necessary that a shirt should be mended for Henry; for every one of his shirts was ragged. She had not courage to apply to her mother, and tell her how disgracefully lazy she had been. She determined to give up the whole day to needlework. But when she joined the rest of the family at breakfast, she heard that her brothers had invited some young friends to a cricket-match in the field that afternoon, and her plan of industry was immediately given up.



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HARRIET'S TRIALS. 65 of her playfellows, longing to be with them, but unable or unwilling to conquer herself so far as to join them without a special invitation, that should spare her pride from confessing, though her good sense told her, that she had been in the wrong. Such an invitation, however, her companions were not inclined to send. It is true they missed an active and useful partaker of their sports; but they were also rid of one who was frequently out of humour, unless she were allowed to have everything her own way. Gradually the voices died away, and were heard again at intervals, and at a distance. The lawn, and Les Graces," and daisy-chains, were abandoned for hide-and-seek; and Harriet listened to the voices of successful seekers raised high in merry exultation, and the laughing screams of the captives as they were dragged in glee from their hiding-places, till her pride fairly gave way. Harriet had just squeezed through the lilac bushes, and was boldly advancing to join the party, when little Lucy well nigh drove her back again by exclaiming, Oh! here comes Harriet; I thought she wsuld be tired of being by herself." Fortunately, she was saved from thus punishing herself in a second fit of ill-humour, by the appearance of Mary Langham,-Mary the peacemaker, who, without possessing the half of Harriet's talents, was always beloved by all who knew her, simply because she was invariably sweet-tempered, 5



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I8 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. them, and broke off a long switch from a pear-tree to punish them with. 'But before she could use it, her brother William, together with her mother and the gardener, came up; and Caroline, ashamed, dropped the stick, and ran hastily down the narrow path where the poor ducks had taken refuge. ", Caroline," said her mother, come back. You will kill these creatures with your violence." Caroline stopped, and after some trouble the geese and ducks were gently driven from the garden into the yard, and the garden gate was closed after them. As Caroline walked out of the garden, she felt sorry that her idleness should have caused so much mischief; and she wished that she had seen the geese and ducks into the cow-yard at once. "It would have been less trouble," said she. Yes; it is always the way to save trouble to do what is to be done well at once. Caroline was fourteen years old, and had regular duties to perform. It was her business to go into the dairy to see the milk skimmed and the cream measured; and on the mornings that the butter was churned, to see it taken from the churn and washed and weighed. Her mother expected that she would keep an account of the quantity made, and also of the quantity of milk which the two cows gave daily. She had, besides, to weigh and give out from the



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CLARA TRAVERS. CLAIA TRAVERS was the eldest child of Mr. and Mrs. Travers. She had never been to any school, but had been instructed at home by an intelligent, well-informed mother, and had received occasional lessons in music and drawing, from such masters as a country town afforded. It was true she could not play on the piano quite so well as the little Miss Mitfords, nor talk French so fluently as the Miss Hargraves, her opposite neighbours. Her progress in both these acquirements was checked by a very unfortunate circumstance. Mrs. Travers had lost her usual good health, and become so frequently indisposed, that notwithstanding her exertions to continue her instructions to Clara, she found it frequently impossible. Neither could Clara practise her music alone when her mother was ill, for the sound of the piano affected her mother's head so painfully, that the piano was frequently closed for weeks together. But Clara had qualities of far more value than the power of playing the most difficult music; qualities that made her, long before she was eleven



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HARRIET'S TRIALS. 69 Hey what is the meaning of this ? and why am I condemned to see a shoulder instead of a face ? not that I have any objection to a shoulder, when it is tucked tidily into a sleeve as a shoulder ought to be, but I like a face better, because it tells tales; so let me look at yours, Harriet," said Edward, trying to look into his sister's as he spoke. "I suspect it is because the face tells tales, that Harriet's is turned away at this moment," said her mother. At this observation, Harriet's tears, which had been gathering from the moment she entered the room, fell fast upon her plate. "My dear Harriet," said her brother, changing his tone, I am sure, if I have said anything to vex you, I beg your pardon. I was only joking: shake hands with me, and tell me all about your party at Mary Langham's." Harriet gave her hand to her brother, but at the word party," her tears flowed afresh. "What! is there something wrong again? Oh! now I see how it was; some little damsel looked over her right shoulder when she ought to have looked over her left, and Harriet set her right too hastily: that was it, was it not ?-and now she feels a little ashamed, eh, Harriet? Edward's conjecture was so nearly correct, that Harriet could scarcely help smiling, in spite of her



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JOSEPHINE. 7 sugar. Poor fellow! he tried in every way that he could to rouse his careless little mistress to think of him. He sang his sweetest tunes, he chirped more loudly when he saw her, and he fluttered from one perch to another. Sometimes, as if in despair, he would peck the bars of his cage, now become really a little prison, for he could not help himself to the nice lumps of sugar that he saw at breakfast and tea in the basin. But all in vain. Josephine's head was full of other things. Her birth-day was now approaching. A kind friend sent her, as a present, a large wax doll, that could open and shut its eyes, and also a cradle fitted up with proper bedding. This doll, which she called Rosa, made Josephine completely forget Mimi. From morning till night she played with the doll, dressing and undressing it a hundred times, talking to it, pretending to feed it, and to walk it about the room. The poor bird was now glad if his mistress even recollected to give him fresh food before she went to bed; and if she remembered to change the water occasionally, it was lucky for him. She neither heard the chirp, nor saw the hop that she once thought would prevent her forgetting the little fellow. Often he had to wait a day and a night without food. Careless Josephine she did not notice that his song was less merry, that his plumage was less clean and bright, and that he was, in fact, sad and drooping.





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lo8 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. can prevent it," exclaimed Frances, taking her up in her arms; "I know you will never be so naughty again, now that you have had the courage to tell the truth." "Come and sleep in my room to-night, Dora," said Mrs. Hewson, who feared that the generous temper of Frances would make Dora too easily content with herself. "Dora knows that it is by her own future conduct alone that we can judge of her sorrow for her fault, and of her claim to be trusted again." The next morning Mrs. Hewson informed Miss "Watson'and her pupils, that the little girl whom she then led forward in tears, had, by her; own free confession, acknowledged that she was the guilty person; and that henceforth Frances must be considered by the most prejudiced of her companions, not only as entirely innocent of the whole transaction, but doubly to be esteemed for the manner in which she had borne the unjust attacks upon her. Mrs. Hewson then detailed all the facts she had heard from Dora, and how the pen was missing, because Dora had thrown it under the grate. A general murmur of indignation rose among the girls at the deceit that Dora had for a whole day practised upon them; but Mrs. Hewson silenced it, and besought them to remember that Dora, from her age, was not so culpable as would have been the case



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CAROLINE. 29 self. She watched her, with a bundle and her workbox in her hand, crossing the garden into the field to the cricketers. Silently and sorrowfully did Caroline sit down to her work. With every stitch that she put in, she had a feeling of repentance that she had not put it in when it was first wanted. As she worked she thought of the way she had been spending her time. She could recollect nothing satisfactory. A few pencil drawings, a few sums, and about twelve pages of French translation, were all that she could remember to have done for her own improvement during the last three months. Not that her household duties had occupied much of her time. She had not kept the accounts regularly. She had but seldom given out from the store-room the different things wanted. She had but seldom been to the dairy. She had not nursed the baby, nor helped in teaching the younger children. Every day was a blank. Every day she deserved to be written down "Idle." As Caroline thought of all this, she cried bitterly. But after some time she wiped her eyes, and taking courage, said, "I can work quick and well when I choose, and I can do other things well also to please mamma when I take the trouble; and I will try now at least to do what she wishes, and make her and myself happy." With these



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2 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. house, and promised to wait while she asked her father's leave to buy one of the canary birds. Away ran Josephine. She went into the room where her father usually sat. He was not there. She then ran upstairs to his bed-room. Neither was he there. In great fear that the man would not wait, she ran as quick as her legs would carry her into the little garden at the back of the house, and there she found her father. Quite out of breath, she seized hold of his coat-" Come, come, pray come quick, papa " Why so?" said her father; what is the matter?" Oh, there is a man in the street who sells eanaries; he has in one cage more than, a hundreda great cage quite full-he carries it on his shoulder." Well," said her father, "and what is that to me? I have often seen canaries." "'Yes, yes," said Josephine, I know that; but I want-I want-dear papa, if you will give me leave, I want to buy one for myself." Have you any money ? asked her father. Oh, yes, the money that I saved last winter." But," said her father, "if you buy the canary bird, who will feed it and take care of it ? " I, papa, I will feed it. You shall see what a happy little bird I will make it."



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JOSEPHINE. 3 Yes, I do not doubt that such is your wish. But have you considered how much care the bird will require? Do you know that it must be fed not only now and then, but that you must attend to it regularly every day ? " Oh, yes, I know, dear papa, and that is what I mean to do," answered the little girl. And do you also know that the poor bird, if you forget it, cannot ask for such things as it may want ? If I let you buy the bird, remember that its cage is a sort of prison, out of which it cannot get; that if you leave it without food or without water, so it must remain starving, although plenty of both may be within a few inches of its cage. Ah, Josephine," continued her father, "I am half afraid lest you should be careless, and suffer it to die of hunger or thirst." I forget my bird! I let it die of hunger or thirst!" cried Josephine. "No, indeed, I will never eat my own breakfast until I have given the dear canary some. Indeed, papa, I am sure you may trust me. Will you not ?" "I wish to be able to do so, my dear," replied her father; "but I have seen you so negligent in taking care of your playthings and books, that I am afraid of allowing you to have anything which has life. Only think, if you were to forget it only for ono dayl" I 2



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30 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. good feelings, she worked steadily on, not stopping either to stroke the cat, loll out of the window, or to read any of the amusing story-books that were within her reach. She was not long in mending the shirt, for she worked in earnest; and she had the pleasure of hearing herself praised by her mother. Henry also, who was present, was delighted that his sister had succeeded in earning the praise bestowed upon her, and he thanked her for her diligence. This evening, as soon as tea was over, Henry and William employed themselves in looking over what they had prepared against their father's return. These boys had copied, in a neat handwriting, their Latin and Greek exercises, and had written out a long account of the arithmetic and mathematics which they had learned during his absence. Henry had, besides, helped his mother to keep an exact account of the money that had been paid to the different people employed by his father. Little Maria had made a book, in which she had written down, as well as she was able, an account of how many eggs, whether from hens, ducks, or guinea-fowls, she had collected, how much needlework she had done, and how much weeding in the garden. What lessons she had done were written down in it also. Caroline alone had kept no account; and if she



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HARRIETS TRIALS. 61 Yes, sometimes; but Mary is good-natured always." In her eagerness for Mary's success, Lucy passed closer to the players, so close as to touch Mary's elbow, just as she was about to throw off the hoop for the ninety-sixth time. It fell at her feet. You little tiresome creature!" cried Harriet, turning sharply round to Lucy; "you have spoiled our game just at the most interesting time; why could you not stand farther off?" I am very sorry I spoiled your game, Mary; very sorry indeed," said Lucy, looking up in Mary's face. It does not signify," replied Mary, gently; I dare say I should have let the hoop fall by this time, if you had not touched me, my arms are so tired." Mine are not in the least tired," cried Harriet, exultingly, I am just as ready to play now as I was at first. Come, Mary, let us begin again." Perhaps some one else would like to play," said Mary, looking around at their companions. Elizabeth, come here, but make haste, I mean to conquer you all," said Harriet, laughing. Now stand back, you little ones, and don't spoil this game, as you did the last." At the sound of that hasty voice the younger children retreated.



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38 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. diness, if you have other stockings fit to put on," said her mother. Caroline made no reply.She could not answer, because she knew that her stockings were as much neglected as her brother's clothes had been. Why do not you speak ?" asked her mother. Caroline being still silent, her mother continued"I leave it to yourself to decide whether you wish your father, after so long an absence, to be pained by the sight of his daughter's slovenliness." Caroline burst into tears, and slowly turned back to the house. Truly penitent and ashamed, she saw the party depart without her. She listened to the sound of their voices as long as she could hear them, and cried till she could cry no longer. But, suddenly wiping her tears from her eyes, she said-".This punishment I have brought on myself by my indulgence in that indolence of which my mother has so often tried to cure me. I will be a disgrace to her no longer; I will not meet my father as a sloven, although I have been one during his absence. I will prove to both my father and mother that I am anxious to improve, and will employ myself till their arrival in mending as many things as I can." Caroline accordingly took out her thimble and needle and cotton, and first mended herself a pair of stockings to put on. One half-hour only was required for this. For the sake of indulging some idle



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FRANCES MEADOWS. 97 pen being wet, my dear Miss Watson, it tells us nothing; for if the journal was altered last night, the pen would have been dry long before this morning. I will question Frances in private; I really am so sorry to hurt the feelings of a girl whom I have always believed upright and honourable, that I would spare her the remarks of her half-reflecting companions. Have the goodness to call her to me." To Mrs. Hewson's surprise, Frances did not obey the call, but sent word by Miss Watson, that knowing herself to be innocent, she wished that every question might be put to her, before the whole of her school-fellows. Accordingly she was examined, and cross-examined, in presence of them all; nothing more was learnt, excepting one girl mentioned, that she had lent Frances a pen-knife the night before; but Mrs. Hewson truly said, that no pen had been mended for the purpose of marking the journal, for the marks had evidently been made in haste and trembling. Though nothing new was learnt, however, the examination gave rise to several remarks. Marian, who was of an irritable temper, and positive in her opinions, was not rendered less violent by the feeling, that through the dishonesty of another, she had probably lost the reward of all her exertions. Marian was not incapable of generous emotions, 7



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72 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. subjected me. I could not bear to find myself an object of dislike to those around me. One circumstance which occurred on the very day I attained your present age, Harriet, made so much impression on me, that I set about my reformation from that time in good earnest." And what was that circumstance? Is it a story, and will you tell us ?" cried the two younger children, in a breath. It is not a story, Anne; you need not look so eager," said their mother, laughing; "but you shall hear all I have to tell, and that will not be much. Your grandfather and grandmother were going to spend the Christmas holidays at the house of a lady, with whom I thought myself a great favourite, and therefore I expected to be invited to go with them, especially as two cousins, both younger than myself, were going. Other guests were expected, and among them a gentleman who had been a great traveller, and who had seen many things that were new and strange to older and wiser persons than I was. I had heard that this gentleman was particularly kind and communicative to young people; and I expected to have a great deal of amusement as well as instruction. You will easily believe that my disappointment was very great, when I heard I was not to go, and my shame was still greater when my mother told me her reason for not taking me. She said that her





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FRANCES MEADOWS. 87 "No, she has not hitherto attempted," said Frances; "but she has always given Mrs. Hewson satisfaction, and now that she knows her father wishes her to gain a prize, and that the thought of his return from India animates her exertions, I have no doubt she will earnestly strive to gain one. I remember, before the holidays, she used to be up by four o'clock in the morning, in order to finish that large drawing to please her father." "I wonder at that," observed Marian; "because she was frequently not down-stairs until after the bell had done ringing, and therefore lost her mark for punctuality." "Yes," said a little girl who was present, "because Emma often stayed to tie a frock, or to fold up a night-gown of some lazy girl." "Well," said Marian, "I may be wrong, but 1 shall indeed be surprised if Emma wins the prize. You know, Frances, it is not sufficient to accomplish all that we have to do tolerably correctly, as I grant Emma has done; so many of us do that, that there is no chance of the prize without continued exertion. Oh, Emma has neither the talent nor the perseverance; she is a poor dawdle !" Upon hearing this opinion of her friend, Frances turned indignantly away, while many a little voice exclaimed: "If you were a little girl, Marian, you would love Emma as we do." "Mrs. Hewson does



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104 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. replied Frances. I feel, by myself, how easily a person may be considered guilty, although perfectly innocent! I think I was even wrong in suspecting another; and happen what may, I will not lightly accuse any one." At this moment Frances heard a slight sob from Dora's bed, and the quick thought passed through her mind, that, after all, Dora might be guilty. "But," said Emma, almost crying with vexation at her friend's resolution, "while you are acting so generously, Frances, to another, who may be the very person who has caused you all this pain, the girls are suspecting and shunning you." "They shall not suspect her, they shall not shun her!" exclaimed Dora, as she sprang from the bed, which had smothered her low sobs, and buried her face in Mrs. Hewson's lap. It was I who made those marks in the journal, but I never thought Frances would be blamed for it. Oh, how very naughty I have been !" Emma could scarcely believe her sister's words, nor Frances, that the truth had been so suddenly discovered. Mrs. Hewson forbade them to speak until she had heard from Dora how and when she made the marks. During this time, however, Mrs. Hewson's pressure of Frances' hand said more than many words. Interrupted by her sobs, Dora related how she



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-,/7 ~



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88 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. not think Emma a dawdle." "I do not like you for speaking so of Emma!" In the midst of this dispute Mrs. Hewson joined her pupils. They instantly repeated to her the conversation, and pressed her to give them her own opinion of Emma, adding, Make haste, ma'am, because Emma is coming up this walk, and we should not like her to hear what Marian said of her." "And why not?" inquired Mrs. Hewson. "If there be any truth in Marian's observations, it may be of service to Emma to hear them. I suppose those of her companions who imagine her to have such grievous faults, would be glad to help her to cure them." And Mrs. Hewson beckoned to Emma, and told her in a kind tone what the girls had been talking about. "Now, my dear," said she, "there is some little truth in Marian's remarks, though far more in those of your warm-hearted friend. I have sometimes seen you (tempted by your good-nature) assist the idle and careless, at the great risk of neglecting your own duties. There is no doubt, that if you had tried for the prize in the past half-year, your present acquirements would have been far greater." After this conversation, Marian observed with surprise, and Frances with delight, the continual exertions that Emma made to gain the highest marks for every species of study and acquirement. Marian



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go TRAITS OF CHARACTER. but she still dressed many a doll for a little friend, or mended the torn frock of some unlucky child. The indastrious find more spare time from their necessary occupations than can be readily imagined by those who idle their time away. Emma Munro, in striving for the prize, became, if possible, a still greater favourite with her companions on account of her constant good-feeling towards her rivals. Much as she wished for the prize, she never felt jealous at their success. It happened one day that Caroline Roberts, one of the four girls who were foremost in the journal, was suddenly called home for a day by the illness of a relation, and Emma proposed that during her absence no marks should be counted, that Caroline might not, by a misfortune, lose her position with regard to herself, Marian, and the other girl. Her companions consented, Marian observing: "I am sure, Emma, if the prize were for the just and the generous, you would be quite certain to win it; and now I know you better, I find I am quite wrong about your not being as capable as any of us to gain any prize you choose. If I do not win the first prize myself, I hope you may." Thank you, Marian," said Emma, smiling with honest delight at the kind expression of a wish that was precisely the same as her other rivals had made to her.



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80 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. room; "a wreath of dandelions it shall be, which will be uncommon, and appropriate; besides, it will be a peaceful emblem too, as it should be, for it puts one in mind of nothing but an old cow chewing the cud in a meadow. A capital thought I'll go and gather some directly, and little Jenny shall help me. No; it is not a capital thought; it is a very stupid one," said Edward, suddenly recollecting himself, at the sight of Harriet's look of mortification. "Mother, don't you think me very silly? Harriet, I am sure you must think me very ill-natured: are you angry with me ?" "Yes, a little," said Harriet, ingenuously; but I will get over it, and without running away this time." Her mother smiled, and held out her hand. "I told you, you would not find it necessary the second time." Days and weeks, many weeks passed away, in which Harriet maintained sundry battles with her prompt tongue and irritable temper; and if she was not always quite victorious, she had at least the satisfaction of finding her task less and less difficult with every succeeding trial. One day, Harriet found her brother engaged in reading the life of Dr. Franklin, and when he came to that part where Franklin speaks of the method he took to correct himself of some of his faults,



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120 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. Wipe your eyes, dear Martin," said Ruth, "and kiss me, dear Grace; we shall soon have some breakfast." Ruth was so delighted at the happy prospect that she could hardly pronounce her words; but she kissed both her brother and sister, who jumped about with joy at the thought of seeing their father and of getting their breakfast. Poor little ones! they were soon to be cruelly disappointed. As the canoe neared the island, they discovered, first, that it had many people in it, and next, that these people were not of a pale colour like themselves, but that they were of a dark red copper colour. As to their dress, they were halfnaked. Some had on blankets hooked together at the throat, and with holes cut to put the arms through, as a sort of cloak. Some had gay feathers in their heads, and the men had no hair on the front of their heads, but only one long lock hanging from the crown. All of them had their arms and legs bare, and were singing or moaning a sort of Indian song. Red Indians! Red Indians!" shrieked out all the children at once. We shall be killed; we shall be killed!" The pleasure they had before felt was now turned into terror. They ran as fast as they could into the midst of some thick bushes which were near. They crouched under these in breathless fear, hiding themselves as well as they possibly



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40 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. had no occasion to make any inquiries. But Caroline was proud to tell him how she had employed herself while waiting for them. Her father kissed her, and kindly told her he hoped that henceforward her daily account would be as good, and that he should have the pleasure of seeing his eldest girl punctual and industrious. Conquer your indolence, my dear girl," said he, "and do not let your mother and myself be any longer uneasy on your account. Let us have the pleasure of seeing you neat and useful; and the reflection that you have left no duty unperformed will make your life cheerful and happy." As Caroline listened to her father, she made many good resolutions to endeavour to reform the bad habits that, little by little, were making her both unhappy and useless. It was a difficult task that lay before her; but at each successful attempt to do her duty, the task became easier; and, when once the better habit had been formed, she found it as easy and pleasant to be industrious and useful, as before she had thought it difficult and painful. We rejoice to add that in time she succeeded, and had the reward of perseverance in good. G^~Qf^



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CAROLINE. 19 store-room the different things required in the house. Her mother had trusted these things to her care, but Caroline's indolence was so great that, although she wished to please her mother, she scarcely ever was up early enough to visit the dairy at the proper time; and was obliged to give the key to the dairy-maid, not being herself ready to attend. And she would have to visit the store-room many times in the course of the day, because she would not take the trouble to think what would be wanted every day before she went there. When Caroline came into the house, she went into her mother's room and told her how sorry and ashamed she was for her late piece of idleness. "Caroline," said her mother, "I grieve not for the cabbages that have been destroyed, but for the unhappy life that you are preparing for yourself. You are now fourteen years of age, and already feel the discomfort that arises from your indolence. But what you feel now is as nothing compared with what you will feel, if you suffer that which is still but a slight failing to grow into a confirmed habit. You will be neither trusted nor loved." Feeling the justice of these remarks, and heartily sorry to see her mother so much vexed with her, Caroline made many promises to endeavour to conquer her laziness. The next morning, when the maid came to say she 22



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CLARA TRA VERS. 51 to propose to her sister, her immediate removal, by short and easy stages, to Devonshire. When Mr. Travers arrived, and saw the wasted form of his beloved wife, he entreated her to agree to Mrs. Elwyn's proposal. He tried to remove every objection, and said he would immediately defer one of his intended journeys, that during her absence he might be at home as much as possible. Mrs. Travers, still agitated, urged that she could not bear the idea of leaving the children. Clara, who knew that the doctors had declared that there was little hope of recovery, unless Mrs. Travers followed their advice, earnestly begged her mother not to think of her brothers and herself, assuring her that they would contrive to make themselves happy; seeing her mother shake her head, she stooped over her, and whispered, "Dear mamma, why do you refuse us ?" "If I tell you, my dear child," replied Mrs. Travers, I shall pain you, and I should feel sorry to do that,-you who have been so long my tender little nurse, my dear active little friend." Is there anything that I can do, dear mamma, that will persuade you to go with my aunt Elwyn?" again inquired Clara. Yes, my love, there is," answered Mrs. Travers. Oh, what is it?" said Clara anxiously. Promise to try to be gentle, kind, and forbearing 42



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RUTH, THE AMERICAN GIRL. 121 could. They thought that these savages must have murdered their father, and were now coming to the island to seek for them. We must not be surprised at this, for some of the wild Indians are very cruel, and these poor children had never heard anything else about them, but that they always killed the white people. They had never heard that Indians can also be kind and willing to help others who are in trouble, and that they do no harm to such as behave well to them. So, scarcely daring to breathe, lest these Indian people should hear them, the unfortunate Ruth, Grace, and Martin, huddled close together, and the two youngest hid their eyes in their sister's lap. Meanwhile the canoe came close to the shore, and the Indian men, women, and children landed. As soon as they were all out of the canoe, they began to prepare to light a fire. Some of the children dispersed to collect wood, and approached every now and then, in their search for dry sticks, the hiding place of Ruth, Grace, and Martin. The hearts of these three little ones almost stopped beating, they were so terrified. The Indian children were not long picking up wood enough for the fire; and, placing it in a heap, one of the Indians soon made it into a cheerful blaze. The women then began to cook some food for their morning meal. They had maize-bread and



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FRANCES MEADOWS. 95 you or to any one;" and so saying, Miss Watson left the room. Not one girl remained behind, to say a comforting word to Frances. Frances stopped for a moment to check the scalding tears, and to fortify herself with the belief, that neither Mrs. Hewson nor her friend Emma would suspect her, and then joined her companions in the breakfast-room. The low whisperings, the cautious glances, the sudden silence at her approach, hurt her exceedingly; but she conquered her emotion, and took her seat at the table. Emma Munro had only that moment been informed of her friend's painful situation. She instantly declared, she was quite certain that Frances had nothing to do with so dishonest an action, and would have entered warmly into her defence, had not Miss Watson forbidden any further talk on the subject till Mrs. Hewson's return. Upon entering the parlour and seeing Frances's agitated countenance, Emma was fearful of drawing attention to her, but she found an opportunity of slipping a paper into her lap with these few words on it, "Do not be unhappy, dear friend; no one who loves and knows you, can suspect you; and never certainly your friend Emma." When Mrs. Hewson returned home, she was much shocked and hurt at such a want of integrity in some one of her pupils. Upon asking Miss Watson what steps had been taken to discover the dishonest person,



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CLARA TRAVERS. 55 brothers. Her father, observing how much she missed her mother, gave her leave to invite occasionally their neighbours, the Miss Hargraves, who were a year or two older than Clara. With these young people, Clara and her brothers passed many a pleasant evening; for Sophia and Ellen Hargrave took an interest in all their occupations, and were ever ready for a good game of play, or a quiet amusement at the table, as either seemed most agreeable to the rest of the party. Edgar liked them, because they admired his rabbits; Frederick, because they were never tired of looking at his little cabinet of shells and minerals; and Rosa said they were kind girls," because they joined her in playing with the baby-house. The letters from Mrs. Travers were not at first very cheering. Her illness had been so severe that a long time was required to restore her to health, but she wrote in the most animated manner of her delight at hearing from Mr. Travers of the daily affectionate conduct of Clara to the younger children. Each letter expressed her earnest desire to return to them when she was sufficiently restored to do so. At length, after an absence of three ionths, Mr. Travers had the great pleasure of hearing that the sea air had proved so highly beneficial, that Mrs. Travers would no longer delay her return to her beloved family, and that she intended to be



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36 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. you have caused, as well as you can. Clear the combs from the bees, and cover the dishes over one by one, now that the bees are stupified, and run away with them to the store-room." Do not kill any more of the poor things," said Henry. While they are torpid we can remove the combs; and they may recover by and by, and fly away to their homes again." "I am afraid," said the gardener, "that but few will go back to their hives. The honey and the brood-cells have made them mad." William, wishing to save the stupified bees that were on the table and floor, was gently sweeping them up, and putting them with a spoon into a pan, intending to take them into the garden, when one of them stung him on the finger. Thank you, Caroline," said he. "What for?" asked Caroline. One of your subjects has wounded me," said he, laughing; and I think it right to inform you, as queen-bee, of her bad conduct, so that you may punish the offender." Put some hartshorn to the wound," said his mother; "and do not call her the queen-bee any more." With great trouble the dishes were at last conveyed to the store-room, and .the keyhole of the door was carefully stopped. Then the house doors



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CLARA TRA VERS. 45 letter was despatched; nor could Clara hope to see her aunt for four or five days. Meantime, the affectionate little girl nursed her sick mother with unceasing attention. At the least movement of Mrs. Travers during the night she was up and ready to support her aching head, or to offer refreshing liquids to allay her feverish thirst. During the daytime she never left her mother's room without asking whether she could be spared; and when her mother slept for a short time, her noiseless step passed and repassed the bed without risk of awakening her. She planned several excursions for her brothers and sister, to remove them from home. One day they were sent with the nurse to dine in a distant wood, and the happy children, laden with baskets of provisions, sallied forth in high glee, declaring they would fill their empty baskets, on their return, with wild-flowers for her and mamma. Another day she surprised the boys with fishing-nets, which she had made in her mother's darkened chamber. Rods were soon contrived, and then the eager boys marched off with the old gardener to a piece of water, two miles distant, where sticklebacks and minnows were to be found sporting and swimming in shoals. A third day she gave the children half her pocketmoney, to buy rabbits and guinea-pigs at a neighbouring farmer's, and where they were sure te



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42 .TRAITS OF CHARACTER. years of age, her mother's beloved little friend and companion. She was so perfectly trustworthy that she could always be depended on; and her mother, therefore, felt that her wishes, once expressed, were sure to be followed. Then no one could doubt Clara's word, because she was known to be particularly careful tp speak the truth, and her activity and forethought rendered her an excellent assistant to her mother in family duties. Indeed during Mrs. Travers' many indispositions, Clara almost filled her mother's place. With a very few directions, she managed to keep the weekly accounts, to give out daily the necessary articles for family use from the store closet, to prepare her brothers each morning for school, and to wait upon her mother with an attention that could not be surpassed. When the nurse was engaged with the other children, she would amuse the baby; and each morning that she heard its plaintive cry, when laid in its crib during the time that the nurse dressed the little ones, she would lay aside her occupations, or a favourite book, to run to take him up and console him. No wonder that her mother loved her I The business of 'Mr. Travers occasioned him to make long journeys in different parts of the country, and he was frequently absent for several weeks together. It happened one summer that Mrs. Travers became



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112 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. are now living; that Dora is not only an amiable clever woman, but is remarkable for her strict adherence to truth; that Emma has well justified the opinion of her friend Frances and Mrs. IHewson, by a life of activity, energy, and usefulness; and that the same friendship subsists between Emma and. Frances as in their school-girl days. 74,



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100 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. the child. "I wish I could make you happy again. Oh, poor, poor Frances! Dora cried violently, and when Frances saw such proofs of an affectionate sympathy, she rejoiced that she had not been tempted to mention her, as the person whom she slightly suspected. Some time after, Emma was obliged to leave her friend, and the instant Dora was alone with Frances she said-" Are you quite sure that Mrs. Hewson thinks you did it, Frances? She did not say so to the girls when you left the room." What does that signify? said Frances. It is plain she believes I am guilty. I shall go home disgraced for the fault of another." Oh, dear! how miserable you will be: and will Mrs. Hewson tell your father and mother ?" Undoubtedly she will," replied Frances; "but, Dora, they will believe my word, for they know I have never deceived them. If Mrs. Hewson and the girls knew me as well, they would believe me also. I cannot help their suspicions; I must only try and bear the injustice patiently." Frances rose from her seat on the bed, and bathing her swollen eyes with cold water, attempted to recover the appearance of composure. She strove to occupy herself with various little preparations for home; but all the cheerful anticipation that had previously made these so delightful was entirely



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C AROLI NE. OH, fie Caroline, to sit there nursing that lazy cat, when you have done so much mischief in the garden!" cried her brother William. "* I have not been into the garden this long time," said Caroline, "so I cannot have done any harm;" and she patted the cat's head. "Not been into the garden Pray, how then did the geese and ducks get in? You had the care of them, and mamma desired you to drive them through the garden into the cow-yard," replied her brother. "The geese and ducks I" said his sister. "Oh they are quite safe: I only left them to rest themselves a little on the grass-plot, while I rested too, for I was as tired as they were." "You are always tired, I think," said William. "It must be doing nothing that fatigues you so much.



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CAROLINE. 23 got down in time to eat her breakfast just before it was removed. This indolence also made her untidy in her personal appearance. She was satisfied with hurrying her clothes on, without first washing herself; and thought herself clean enough when she had passed over her face the corner of a towel dipped in a little drop of water at the bottom of her basin. A comb, some mornings, scarcely passed through her hair; and it was seldom that a hair-brush, nail-brush, and tooth-brush were used as they ought to be. She thought herself dressed when she pleased her eye by putting round her waist a smart coloured ribbon, although even in this she did not take the trouble to suit the ribbon to the colour of the dress. Caroline often, too, used a pin where she should have sewed on a button or hook; and let every little girl remember that, whenever a pin is employed where a needle and thread ought to be used, she is untidy and unpleasing in her appearance. Caroline, besides the care of her own linen, had also part of her eldest brother Henry's. This was included in her share of the business of the house; and it ought to have been her care, as it was her duty, to keep his shirts neatly mended. But the same laziness which caused her to neglect her other duties, made her also put off mending from week to week the things required. Small rents and holes had



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CAROLINE. 33 from the hive; but in her hurry she did not think of shutting the door and windows. She separated the "combs, placing the combs that contained the young bees in their various stages of growth in a large pan, and the honeycombs in dishes. She carried these dishes to a table in the hall; and left them there while she went to look for the store-room key. She was going to take all these things to the store-room, there to finish the work which ought to have been done the night before. In less than five minutes, the call of her sister Maria made her run back to the hall. "Caroline! Caroline! make haste! the bees! the bees! The dishes are covered with bees the house is full of bees! Oh, what shall we do ? "Caroline," cried Henry, who had come into the hall for his hat, as he was setting off for school, be quick, or there will be no honey left." This information was too true. In a few minutes more the house swarmed with bees in a very angry state. The noise they made was prodigious. They settled upon the various combs, some sucking the honey, others gathering in clusters on the cells of the young bees. Every attempt to drive them off was useless. They only became more and more irritated, and stung such as interfered. Maria, following Caroline's order to run away with one of the dishes of honeycomb, was stung so severely 3



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74 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. about half an hour after my father and mother had left the house. I had one of my frocks to mend, and while I was gone up-stairs to look for it, my little brother William opened my work-box, and took out a ball of cotton for the kitten to play with. When I came down-stairs again, they were in the midst of their diversion; the kitten had unwound the whole ball of cotton, which was twisted round every chair and table in the room, and William had taken every pin out of my pincushion, and stuck them in the sofa pillows." The tiresome little creatures!" exclaimed Harriet, with sparkling eyes, and mounting colour; I would have -" She recollected herself, and stopped short; her mother smiled, and Edward and her sisters laughed outright. You would have been exceedingly angry, I dare say, as I was. I felt very much inclined to scold my brother, and given the kitten a slap, but I am happy to say I did not. I won the victory, Harriet, and contented myself with putting the kitten out of the room. As to William, he was too young to understand why he should not divert himself with my work-box as readily as with his own ball; so I carefully took all the pins out of the sofa pillows, and stuck them in the pincushion once more, and ever after I remembered to turn the key of my box when I was leaving William alone in the room."



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32 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. bed. She determined, however, to be up before breakfast to attend to the honeycomb. But, as usual, her good intentions were followed by nothing useful. She awoke only just a quarter of an hour before breakfast-time, and her hurry to be down made her more slovenly than usual in performing her scanty operations in dressing herself. The points of the pins stuck out frightfully on each side of her collar. Her hair was rough, and her face and hands were scarcely touched with water. She came to the breakfast-table with none of that fresh appearance in her looks given by the free use of cold water. Caroline felt much relieved when she saw her mother come into the room with her bonnet on, ready to go out. A neighbour's child had been taken violently ill, and its mother had sent to request that Caroline's mother would be so kind as to come and assist with her advice. Caroline's mother had come in before she went, expressly to tell her daughter to be careful to keep the door and windows shut in the room where, as she supposed, the honeycomb had been placed to drain. As soon as her mother had gone, Caroline ate her breakfast hastily, and hurried her brothers and sister with theirs; and wishing to spare her mother the vexation of knowing that the honeycomb was still untouched, she ran to the pantry without a moment's delay. She was not long in pulling out the combs



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O7SEPHINE. 13 Josephine, too impatient to wait, put on her bonnet as soon as she had eaten her breakfast, and got one of the other servants to go with her to her friends' house, to ask them to walk with her. But Mimi? Oh he was obliged to remain alone, and to fast. The next day Josephine again amused herself with her young friends. But Mimi? He pecked the wires of his cage, but again he was forgotten. Fainting for want of food, he neither sang nor chirped, but sat miserably on his perch, with his head buried in his breast. The next day Josephine was invited to spend at the Zoological Gardens. But Mimi? Poor, lonely, speechless bird in the midst of so much pleasure, he was without pleasure-he was not thought of. The next day, or twelve days after Mr. and Mrs. Gourlay's departure, they came back. Josephine had scarcely thought of their return, her head was so full of amusements; and she was quite surprised, when the chaise drove up to the door. She ran downstairs, however, quickly and joyfully, to meet them. As soon as her parents had kissed her, and said they were glad to see her again, her father asked, How is Mimi ?"



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68 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. evening, and how different were her feelings at this moment, from those of the morning. It was bad enough to be conscious of her own folly; it was still worse to be obliged to talk about it. "And I must talk about it when I see Edward, for he will be sure to ask me if I spent a pleasant evening; and then if I say No, he will ask me why, and then I shall be obliged to confess how ill-tempered I was before Anne and Louisa." These uncomfortable thoughts were passing through Harriet's mind as she slowly descended the stairs the next morning, and entered the room where her mother and sisters and her brother were at breakfast, with a pace so unlike her usual bounding step, that Anne abandoned the defence of her basin of milk from the kitten, who was trying to put her head into it, and came to ask her sister if she were not well? and Edward set down an untasted piece of honeycomb to laugh at Harriet's tardy advance and discontented face. Why, Harriet, my dear," said her brother, have you left your senses upstairs with your nightcap ? You look as if you were walking in your sleep. What is the matter with you?" Nothing," said Harriet, pettishly; and as she took her usual place by her brother, she gave her chair a jerk round, so as to uresent her shoulder to him.



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66 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. and willing to yield in small thlngs, and in great also, when duty did not stand in the way. Mary was so evidently glad to see her, and so good-naturedly anxious to have Harriet and all the party on good terms again, that it was not possible to resist her efforts to restore peace. The evening glided pleasantly away, and bid fair to end in harmony, when an unfortunate blunder in a quadrille overset Harriet's lately acquired good humour. There, I thought so, I knew how it would be, if those tiresome little things were allowed to dance with us," cried Harriet, her voice and colour rising: "I never saw anything so stupid in my life; don't you know your right hand from your left, child?" continued she, turning angrily to Lucy. To be sure I do," said Lucy; I made a mistake; anybody might make a mistake for once, Harriet; and you need not be so very angry, nor call me stupid. I dare say you made mistakes sometimes, when you were as little as I am." Not such foolish mistakes as you make. I should never have mistaken my right hand for my left; at any rate, if I did not know one from the other, I would sit down, and not throw other people out. It is too bad for one to spoil the pleasure of seven." "I think so too, Harriet, and therefore I advise you to sit down," said a calm voice from behind.



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No TRAITS OF CHARACTER. offered to the candidates, one being longer than the rest. Marian drew the longest, and the prize was awarded to her; a handsome rosewood desk. She bent over it in admiration for one moment, the colour mounting in her cheeks higher and higher, while her companions exclaimed, How beautiful! and how very useful!" And then turning suddenly to Frances, she said, "Frances, if you forgive me for my unkind speeches yesterday, will you accept this desk from me? I reproach myself bitterly for my violence and injustice to you, and I cannot feel happy till you say you forgive me." Oh, dear Marian! I am too happy to think of the hasty words that any one has spoken to me, and especially of yours, now that you generously own you were wrong; but I cannot accept your beautiful prize: it is far too valuable." "You are as forgiving as you are honourable," said Marian. "I shall never see the desk, but 1 shall think how hasty and unjust I have been, and how calmly and generously you have acted. I wish I could be certain that this prize would have been mine by right. It is very hard for poor Emma, if it is justly hers." "Oh, do not think of me," said Emma; "I had once earnestly wished for it, but I am glad I did not draw the longest slip of paper and so gain the prize,



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HARRIET'S TRIALS. 67 It proceeded from Harriet's mother, who had entered when her daughter's voice was at the loudest, and her cheeks at the reddest. "It must have been a terrible mistake, indeed, to cause so much disturbance. What was it, Harriet ?" Oh, nothing ma'am-I mean not much," said Lucy, pitying Harriet's confusion. "Let us begin again, and I will try not to go wrong a second time." I had rather not dance any more," said Harriet, with some appearance of sullenness. "I had rather you should not dance either, in your present temper," said Harriet's mother, in a low voice; "but as your sitting down would prevent others from dancing, I must beg you to go on." Harriet, who saw that her mother was displeased, did not venture to make any further objection. She did what she was required to do, indeed, but so ungraciously, that there was not one of the little party who did not secretly rejoice when the hour for separating arrived. It did not escape Harriet's observation, that her companions were glad to be rid of her. Even Mary shook hands with her more coldly than usual, and tears of mingled sorrow and mortification stole down Harriet's cheeks, when she thought how eagerly she had anticipated this 52



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RUTH, THE AMERICAN GIRL. 129 saw that it was a different canoe, and asked their father where his own was. While they were paddling across the river, their father told them that, just as he reached the opposite shore, the night before, the canoe ran against the trunk of a tree that was hidden in the water, and upset; and that with much difficulty he had saved himself from drowning. Being able to swim, he had at length landed in safety; but his canoe, bottom upwards, floated down the river, and had gone he knew not where. "There was not," said he, a house in sight, and I walked nearly two hours through wood and bushes, and at last thought, as the moon rose, that I could see some smoke. I then quickened my steps, and in half an hour more arrived at a small log-house. The people were very kind to me, and dried my clothes at their fire, and gave me food. When I told them of my misfortune, and how destitute I had left you three dear children, they also gave me food to bring to you. But they had no canoe. This kind friend, however," pointing to the man who was with them in the boat, who is the master of that house, offered to go with me three miles off to a neighbour who had a canoe, and ask him to lend it. So we departed together, and, after much trouble, were able to get this canoe and come to you. All this time I was more wretched than I can tell, not knowing but what you might perish with cold and hunger before my 9



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98 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. nor of owning her errors and trying to mend them; and great part of her exertions during this half-year had been to control herself in trials of temper; but now passion blinded her, and she declared with warmth that, from the very beginning of the half-year, she was convinced that Frances was resolved Emma should gain the prize; and who else," said she, "would run the risk of disgrace for Emma's sake ?" "Gently, gently," said Mrs. Hewson: "if I remember rightly, Marian, Frances last night took the pains to prove to me that you deserved three marks for your French exercise, though M. Hubert had not given you one. That was very unlike the act of an unjust, dishonest person, Marian." I do believe it was merely done to deceive us," whispered Marian to some of her companions, loud enough for Frances to hear. Have any of you the slightest reason to suspect any other person?" inquired Mrs. Hewson of all her pupils. A general shake of the head expressed that Frances was alone suspected. Do you suspect any one, Frances? "Yes, ma'am; I do slightly suspect one person.* Whom, whom ?" asked a dozen eager voices. Tell us whom you mean." "No," replied Frances; "unhappy as I am myself under false accusations, I will not run the risk of



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44 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. their mother's, it is not surprising that they felt a kind of pleasure in disobedience. Frederick, who was only a year and a half younger than Clara, particularly resented this conduct. Foolish words and mutual vexations, therefore, continually arose between them. It is true that Frederick was not so useful a little personage as Clara, but he was an intelligent lad, and quite capable of being an agreeable companion. Thus Clara, who was so highly esteemed by her parents for many excellencies, by one fault alone continually marred the happiness of herself, and brothers, and sister. During the continued illness of Mrs. Travers, Clara began to discover that a good-natured manner of speaking is much more likely to succeed than an ill-tempered, commanding one. Her strong affection for her mother induced her to think of every plan that could quietly and happily employ her brothers and sister; and each day that she did so, she found that they listened to her requests with more docility, and appeared more ready to oblige her. As soon as Clara gained her mother's permission, she wrote to her father, to entreat him to return, and also to her aunt Elwyn, her mother's only sister, who resided in Devonshire. Mr. Travers was in the north of Scotland at the time; he could not therefore return for more than a week after the



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34 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. in the hand that she dropped the dish, and crying, ran upstairs out of the way of the bees. Caroline was in great distress, and too much confused to think what was the best to do. Henry called the gardener, who came in with William immediately. Our neighbours are quite astonished," said the gardener, "at the bustle among their bees." Well done I" exclaimed William. "No wonder the bees from all the gardens near us are flocking in here! The smell of the honey makes them wild." And the smell of the honey and of their broodcells taken away," said the gardener, "makes ours come." Shut the doors and windows, then," said Henry, "and let us cover over the dishes as quickly as possible." "What are we to do?" cried Caroline, quite frightened, as the bees every instant flew around and settled upon her. "Oh, queen-bee, you must hive them all," said William; "you have attracted them." We must burn some brimstone, and then cover over the dishes," said the gardener. Let some one run and fetch a lump of brimstone in an old iron spoon or tin-plate, and bring a light to set fire to it." This was soon brought, and the boys and the gardener held the burning brimstone near the dishes,



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RUTH, THE AMERICAN GIRL. 0-SOME few years ago, in the early part of October, there was a canoe paddling down the Ohio river. In it there was a poor American labourer with his three children. Rutn, te eldest, was eight years of age; Grace was six; and Martin was but three. They had no mother, for she had died of a fever shortly before. This poor family was going to settle in the wild part of the country. The father had packed up all their little stock of furniture and clothes in the canoe, and was in hopes of being able to obtain employment from some of the settlers richer than himself. Whe he left the city in which he had lived up to this time, he stowed carefully in the canoe a quantity 8



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118 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. of, and bade them listen for the splash of the paddle of their father's canoe. Our dear father cannot be long away now," said she; "keep up, dear Martin; walk a little more, and then he will come with our supper, and he will make us a comfortable warm fire." Oh, Ruth, my legs ache so, and I am so cold and sleepy," said Martin, "that I can walk no longer." "Dear Martin," answered Ruth, "walk only a few minutes more.-Hark, was not that a splash in the water?" The children stopped and listened eagerly. It was a splash, but not the splash of a paddle; and now, more disappointed than ever, Martin and Grace began again to cry bitterly, and chilled with the cold, and aching with fatigue, they threw themselves on the damp earth. Ruth was quite as unhappy as they, but instead of giving way to sorrow, she exerted herself to comfort and help them. Finding she could no longer keep them on their legs, she at once spread the old blanket on the ground, and sat down upon it. Then, spreading her clothes as wide as she possibly could, she drew the two little children on her lap, and wrapped the blanket closely round them. It was a happiness to her, while she hugged them, to hear them say, "Dear Ruth, we are warmer now, your lap is so



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CAROLINE. 2j some new wristbands on another before you want it to-morrow morning." Henry good-humouredly took the offered shirt, and shook his head significantly at the same time, and said, laughing, "AhI Caroline, I am afraid it will be-rags out of sight, out of mind; but I will bring some sticking-plaster home with me, for it is but fair, if you prick your fingers working at my wristbands, that I should assist in healing the wounds." Henry set off to attend his master, who lived in the town three miles from his father's house. He went twice a-week, on half-holidays, for four hours at a time. Caroline, instead of proceeding at once to fulfil her promise, found the weather too hot just then to sit down to needlework, and therefore put off the evil hour, and amused herself with sitting in the shade, at one time reading a story-book, and at another time nursing the cat, till the coolness of the afternoon came on. But then came another excuse for delay, for William having prepared his school work for the next morning, asked her to walk and meet Henry. Henry's name, it is true, brought the shirt to her recollection; but she felt more inclined to walk than to work; and so she again yielded to self-indulgence, flattering herself that she could get up early in the morning, and mend his shirt. ,Caroline was so long getting her bonnet, that they had not walked more than a mile before they met



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CONTENTS. -4-Page JOSEPHINE .1 CAROLINE 16 CLARA TRAVERS .41 ARRIET'S TRIAL .....60 FRANCES MEADOWS; OR, CHARACTER .86 RUTH, THE AMERICAN GIRL .113 kl-



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CLARA TRA VERS. 49 her brothers, though Fred had not been to blame in the least. Edgar, who really felt sorry at the disaster, which his eagerness and self-will had occasioned, was silently endeavouring his best to repair the mischief, but as he met with nothing but angry words, his good feeling (for he was quite a child) soon vanished, and throwing down the brushes, he ran out of the room after his brother. Rosa looked at her sister, half afraid to speak to her, and then suddenly putting her little arms round her sister's neck, she exclaimed, "Pray do not be cross, Clara; Edgar is very sorry, and I'll help you. I'll give you my silver penny to buy a new painting box; so don't cry any more." Clara could not help laughing at the idea of a silver penny buying a half-guinea painting box; she kissed her good-natured sister, and muttered half aloud, "Well, certainly it is no use crying about it." She then quietly put her wet paints on the mantelpiece to dry, and wiped the painting box and the table. When she returned to her mother, she found her looking very ill, and far more agitated than when she had left her. Mrs. Travers had heard the loud talking and Clara's angry voice, but she did not inquire the cause. She felt too ill for any conversation. Accustomed when in health to watch over the conduct of her children to one another, to encourage their good feelings, and quickly to settle their little dis4



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56 TRAITS OF CHARACTER, with them in a few days. The hippy children clapped their hands with joy, and eagerly asked their papa the day and the hour. Tuesday evening about five was the time fixed, and now nothing was thought of but preparations for dear mamma's return. Little Rosa busied herself in washing her doll's things, that the doll might look new and clean. Edgar and Frederick weeded their mamma's favourite flower-bordey with double care; and Clara (who longed to surprise her mamma with her progress in music) practised her last new tunes with additional zeal. Tuesday arrived,-a warm, delicious September day. Long before the evening, Clara had ornamented each parlour with flowers, the sweetest and gayest she could find; the boys had swept the gravel walks, till not one loose pebble could be seen; and the doll arranged in her best had been placed in the window to watch for mamma. The last half hour was appearing very long, when Clara proposed that tea should be laid out in the arbour, her mother's favourite spot, from the beauty of the view that it commanded. The busy children soon conveyed the large arm-chair and the footstool from the parlour to the arbour. Edgar carried off the great tea-board, Clara followed with cups and saucers, and in a short time everything was in readiness. The pinafores were flung off, and the expecting little family had now nothing to do but to stand upon



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HARRIET'S TRIALS. 73 friend had a large family; and that she was sorry to add, that both in my plays and studies I showed great impatience of contradiction and want of temper, and that till I endeavoured to correct myself of these faults, she would not run the risk of making her friends uncomfortable by the ill-humour of a child." Poor mamma !" said Harriet; "and what did you say? what did you do ?" I said nothing; I felt the justice of my mother's reproof; but when she was gone, I did what I suppose most little girls of twelve years old would have done, on a similar occasion, I sat down and cried very heartily." Poor mamma !" repeated all the three children. "Well, and then?" clustering round her as they spoke. "And then," said their mother, smiling, "when I had cried till I could cry no longer, it occurred to me that crying would not help me, but that I might save myself from future disgrace, and my mother from the pain of punishing me, by keeping a strict watch over myself, and either be silent or walk away, whenever I felt inclined to dispute about trifles, or give short answers, as you call them." "Now, mamma, tell us, if you will be so good, the first, the very first trial you made, and whether you won the victory," said Harriet, who had listened with the greatest interest to her mother's story. My first trial was made, if I remember rightly,



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FRANCES MEADOWS, TRAITS OF CHARACTER, ETC. aZiitft lltustrations. LONDON: FREDERICK WARNE AND CO. BEDFORD STREET, COVENT GARDEN. NEW YORK: SCRIBNER, WELFORD, AND CO.





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24 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. thus become so large as to render many of Henry's shirts unfit to be worn. Her brother at last began to complain to her of the uncomfortable state of his clothes; and one morning he brought down the shirt she had given to him, saying, he positively would not wear such a ragged thing. What a plague!" said his sister. What idleness, rather say," replied her brother. If I were to write my Greek exercises or Latin translations in as slovenly a manner as you do your work, I should be quite ashamed to let my father or my master see them." I do my work well enough," said Caroline, pettishly. You tear your clothes much more than anybody else. If I were to work all day and all night too, it would be of no use." I wish you would try during the day, and I would excuse you at night," said Henry, laughing; you would soon have nothing to do. You must, however, give me a shirt, for I am going in half an hour to my Greek lesson, and if you cannot I must ask my mother." You need not do that," replied his sister, alarmed: for she knew too well the sad state of the clothes given into her charge, to wish her mother to see them. If you will wear this shirt, which has only one little tear at the shoulder, to-day, I will put



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76 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. without thinking, or they would not have made such an assertion. If by a good heart you mean, love and kindness to others, the wish to be of servce to them, and to render them happy, harsh words and cross looks are odd means for such a purpose." Harriet was silent for a few minutes, reflecting on what her mother said. But, mamma," said she at length, I thinkdon't you think, that people who are not good-tempered may yet be willing to be of great service to their friends." By great service, I suppose you mean, they would help their friends out of great dangers or great difficulties. Remember, my dear child, you may not be called upon above once in your life for such exertions; perhaps, they may never be required of you; but you are called upon every day, almost every hour, for some small service or trifling kindness. And if you are not obliging in little things when it is in your power, how am I to believe you would be in greater." I would not believe any such thing," said Edward, "nor would any one else, I should think. Suppose papa had said to that poor fellow who tumbled into the muddy pool, in Dagley Lane, the other day,' My good friend, it is not worth my while to help you out of that ditch; but if you were soused over head and ears in the river, I would fish you up with



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8 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. The birth-day came. A party of young friends, who had been asked some days before, arrived to dine with her. Gaily they all sat round the table, and Josephine's father and mother, to add to her pleasure, dined with the little party. Mimi is very grave to-day," said one of the young visitors; "I have not heard him sing yet." I was thinking so, too," said Josephine's mother. "Is he ill, that he is so silent ?" Mr. Gourlay looked up at Mimi's cage. Everything was quite still there. Now, the bird usually sang very loud when there was a noise of laughing and talking in the room. Mr. Gourlay continued to look at the cage for some minutes. No sound, no stir-all was quiet. Startled at this, he rose fiom his chair, and all the little company followed him with their anxious eyes. He went to the cage and saw the little bird lying on his belly, panting. A thin film covered his dim eye. His feathers were ruffled, and he was huddled up like a ball. That friendly note of Cuic, cuic," which he usually uttered when his friends approached, was not to be heard. The poor creature had scarcely any life left. "' Josephine !" cried Mr. Gourlay, what ails your canary?" Josephine's face and neck became quite scarlet. With hesitation she answered, Oh! I have-I have forgotten to-to-" She could not finish; but, trem-



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92 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. "But, ma'am," said Frances, "Emma told me to say that Marian deserved three. She completely misunderstood the rule which M. Hubert had given us, and after he had left us, and she had found out her mistake, she wrote her exercise without a single fault." When Mrs. Hewson heard this, she examined Marian's exercise, and gave her the three marks which she justly deserved. After the names had all been gone over, and every mark awarded, the journal was by some chance left on the side table, instead of being immediately locked up in a drawer. During this time, many of the girls turned over the leaves and examined it. Frances was the last that evening who tried to guess the position of the different parties, and she sat earnestly looking over the pages, till she found her companions had retired to rest. "To-morrow morning, Frances, your anxiety for your friend will cease," said Mrs. Hewson, as she bade her good-night: Miss Watson and myself, with two of your companions, will count the journal directly after breakfast." The following morning, Frances was so busy in attempting to pack up several things before breakfast, that she was unusually late in her bed-room. As she was fastening a cord round her desk, which she had just packed in brown paper, she heard a



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94 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. Certainly; I cannot fear to be found out in that which I have never done, and which I feel I could not do," replied Frances. Miss Watson quickly removed the string and brown paper, and unlocked the desk. She looked into the division for the pens, and took out one that apparently had been lately used. She held it up reproachfully to Frances, without uttering a word; and Frances saw directly, that not only Miss Watson, but her companions, were confirmed in their suspicions. "I used that pen this morning," said she, in a voice which she with difficulty commanded, "to direct various little presents for those of my school fellows whom I should not see again. But why should I speak? if you can all suspect me, my word is worth nothing." There was a pause for a few moments. Miss Watson and the girls were touched at the appearance of truth in Frances, and her evident distress. Let me go to Mrs. Hewson," continued Frances. From her, at least, I shall have justice." "Mrs. Hewson has gone out for half an hour," replied Miss Watson: "until she returns, nothing can be done. I sincerely hope, Frances, that you may be able to prove that you are quite unconcerned in so disgraceful a transaction, and that by our finding out the guilty person, we may not 'be unjust to



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116 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. ther and sister. During my absence, walk about till you are tired, and then wrap yourselves up together in the blanket. Do not wander far from this tree, that I may know where to find you on my return." And so saying, he began to push the boat away from the shore. The children cried bitterly when they saw their father paddling fast out of sight, and felt themselves left alone on the island. Eagerly they watched the canoe as it became dimmer and dimmer in the distance, till at last it disappeared altogether. Then these poor deserted little ones, clinging closely to one another, and sobbing, seemed to fancy that they should never, never again see their father, or the canoe which had been for so long a time their only home. At last, Ruth was reminded by the coldness of the night, that she had something else to think about besides her alarm at being left alone. She wiped her eyes, and endeavoured to comfort and cheer the two younger ones. She persuaded them to move up and down along the shore. True, she trembled at every sound she heard, fearful that some wild beast might be coming out from among the thick bushes and wood that grew on the island. But she did not let Grace and Martin know that she feared anything. She kept them as close to the shore as she dared to do, and every now and then they all



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48 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. trying to snatch the pallet, which I told him he must not use without washing, because all the colours were so mixed, that he would have spoiled the paints if he had rubbed them on it. I could not help his snatching the pallet, I tried to save your paints, Clara." Well, I only wanted to make a dark cloudy sky to my drawing," said Edgar: "I forgot what Clara said about rubbing the paints. I am sure I did not mean to upset the water." "I don't care what you meant! replied Clara, angrily, only see what you have done," and stooping, she drew out her paints from the box, soddened with the water, and sticking to one another. I am sure," she continued, "nobody has such disagreeable brothers and sisters as I have. I wish mamma had kept you at school all the holidays " Well," said Fred, "if you will go on speaking so crossly when I wish to help you, I shall not scrape the paints, nor do anything else; I shall go down stairs." I am not disagreeable, I am not naughty," said little Rosa; "I have been sitting here playing with my doll: you should not call me disagreeable, Clara." Clara did not listen to either Fred or Rosa. She was angry, and therefore unjust. Neither children nor grown up persons can have sense or reflection enough to be just when they allow themselves to be in a passion. Clara continued railing against both



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RUTH, THE AMERICAN GIRL. 117 stood straining their eyes to catch a glimpse of their father through the increasing darkness. But no father was to be seen. The sun had sunk before their father had departed. The twilight had now passed away. And with no shelter for their bodies from the cold piercing night air, with no food, no fire, no bed to rest upon, and what they felt quite as much, with no friend to comfort and protect them, these little unfortunate children wandered up and down a few yards of the shore of this lonely and uninhabited island, till they all began to feel as fatigued as they were hungry. Happily the night did not continue so dark, nor so rainy, as it had at first threatened. It was extremely cold, but the moon every now and then shone brightly, so that Ruth was able to persuade her little companions to move about with her. She remembered to have heard that sleeping in the cold night-air had sometimes killed people, and therefore, as cheerfully as she could, she endeavoured to keep her brother and sister stirring about with her, close to the spot from which her father had departed. As they became more and more chilled and tired, she found greater difficulty in prevailing upon them to do this. They complained that their limbs ached with the cold, but she urged them to move quicker, and then she told them all the tales she could think



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CAROLINE. 37 had kept one, the number of blanks in it would have made her afraid to look at it. As she saw the happy faces of her brothers and sisters while they were so employed, she felt truly sorry that she should have so misspent her time. She had not enjoyed herself while she had given way to indolence, and she had lost the pleasure of looking back on well-spent time. The gardener had given notice that he intended that night to take a hive of honey without killing the bees; and, at about nine o'clock, he brought the hive full of combs into the house. Maria had gone to bed, and the two boys had gone out to finish their fireworks. Caroline and her mother were at work together. At her mother's request, she went out at once for the purpose of taking the comb out of the hive, and separating the honeycomb from the cells containing the young bees. Her mother had instructed her how to cut off the waxen coverings on both sides of the honey-combs, so that they might drain through the hair-sieves into the dishes. Unfortunately for Caroline, when she came to the pantry where the hive had been placed, she heard her brothers letting off some of the fireworks to try (as they said) if they were good; and this made her forget the errand on which she had come. She was so much interested in looking at what her brothers were doing, that she loitered till it was time to go to



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JOSEPHINE. 9 bling and sliding down from her chair, she ran out to fetch the box of rape and canary seed. Mr. Gourlay unhooked the cage, and looked into the seed-trough and the water-bottle. Alas! Mimi had neither a single grain of seed, nor a drop of water. My poor little fellow !" said Mr. Gourlay; "indeed, you have fallen into cruel hands. If I had believed it possible that this could have happened, 1 would never have allowed Josephine to buy you." All the children left the table, and, clasping their hands, exclaimed, "Poor little Mimi !" Unhappy Mimi !" said Josephine's mother, "to want even the crumbs that have fallen from the lap of your thoughtless, unkind mistress, and not be able to reach what she throws away; to see food, and yet suffer the pangs of hunger." Josephine sobbed so loudly, that her mother stopped speaking. The seed-trough was refilled, and the water-bottle also. Every one but Josephine was busily engaged watching the success of Mr. Gourlay's endeavours to recover the half-starved bird. Josephine, truly unhappy, and filled with shame at her neglect of the little sufferer, went up to the nursery and spent the remainder of the day alone and in sorrow. She did not dare to ask whether Mimi was better, for fear she should hear that he was dead. With much trouble Mimi was saved; and when Mr. Gourlay saw that he was out of danger, he began seriously to think of



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28 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. line is so sorry, do forgive her this time; she will take more care in future." I wish I could think so," said his mother; but Caroline's indolence grieves me more and more every day. I fear it will end in my being obliged to treat, her as a child; since she shows herself unfit to be treated as a young person of her age ought to be." His mother then gave Henry the least ragged of the unmended shirts, and then giving Caroline such directions about mending another as she thought necessary, desired her to do it that afternoon. "And may not I take my workout into the field?" asked Caroline. "Certainly not; you would be sure to have your attention distracted from it by what was going on. It is your own fault that you aannot look on at your brothers' game," replied her mother. -"Had you attended to your work at the proper hours, you would not now be deprived of this pleasure. I shall be obliged to take away all your amusements if you do. not exert yoqKself to keep your brother's clothes in a neat state. It is a disgrace to us, Caroline, that he should be seen as he was to-day. With patience and good humour at once employ yourself at what I have given you to do." Caroline had the additional vexation to see her mother take away some of the shirts to mend her-



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FRANCES JM1EADO WS. 91 Towards the close of the half-year, the anxiety of the girls upon the all-important subject of the prize naturally increased. As Miss Watson, the teacher, evening after evening added to the long rows of marks, and laughingly shrugged her shoulders at the approaching labour of counting them, many an eager eye attempted to judge, by the length of the rows, of the comparative amounts. Among those who usually tried to secure the next place to Miss Watson, that they might have a better chance of deciding, no one was more eager than Frances Meadows. She was far more anxious for Emma than Emma was for herself; for Emma was so convinced that she had exerted her powers as her father and Mrs. Hewson had wished her to do, that a modest self-approbation kept her calm even under the idea that a disappointment might await her. The school was to break up on a Thursday, and the journal was to be closed on the Monday preceding. It happened that evening, while Miss Watson was adding the last marks to the journal, that Emma was engaged in putting her little sister Dora to bed, and Frances, as was frequently the case, answered for her. When Marian's name was called, and the number of marks demanded for her last French exercise, to Mrs. Hewson's surprise, Marian answered, "None I"



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HARRIET'S TRIALS. S pleased, I should like to give this book to Harriet. If I have learned to be more orderly, the merit is half hers, I'm sure; I should often have forgotten if she had not reminded me; and besides, father, it is much harder work to keep watch every day and every hour over an irritable temper than to get rid of a slovenly habit." "I think so, too, Edward," said his father; "suppose you go and talk to your mother about it, you will find her up-stairs." Up-stairs Edward went, and there he found his mother arranging some beautiful plants, in a very pretty ornamental flower-stand. Oh, that is for Harriet, I know! thank you, mamma," said Edward. I will go and call her directly, shall I?" And without waiting for an answer he ran down-stairs again, taking six stairs at a jump. We need not describe Harriet's pleasure on the receipt of her mother's gift; for which of our young readers has not felt the pleasure that a well-merited reward can bestow? and who does not feel that the greatest pleasure of all is the approbation of those who grieve to punish and are glad to praise ? w sJIJps-





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FRANCES MEADO WS. 107 "Oh, ma'am! indeed I never once thought of that," said Dora, eagerly. "No; I do not think you knew at the time how very dishonest it was to alter the journal, but you were quite sure that you ought not to meddle with it. Were not you?" Yes," replied Dora, in a low tone. "Then try to remember, Dora, how sadly one fault leads us into others. When you rose this morning, you little thought you should tell lie after lie before you went to bed at night, and that you should stand by and see a dear good friend blamed and shunned by her companions, for a fault of which you alone were guilty. You did not think how all this would follow from your altering the journal." "No," said Dora; "I only thought of Emma." But we must not think of pleasing any one by doing what we know to be wrong," replied Mrs. Hewson. I shall love Frances more than ever for disregarding our opinion rather than accuse you when she was fearful of being unjust; and I have no doubt that she, although accused, was happier, because she was innocent, than you who were never accused by any one." "Oh! I have been very miserable all day, but there is one comfort now, nobody will be unkind to Frances any more." "Nor shall any one be unkind to you, Dora, if I



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54 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. yoking to see her frock torn by Edgar's rough pu1J and her best drawing spoilt by Rosa's upsetting the inkstand over it. She could not always remember her promise, or consider that she herself, when a few years younger, had been equally annoying to others. Clara strove hard, however, to bear these trials well, and if she did not always succeed, she did very frequently, and the consciousness of doing right, and a smile or nod from her father, rewarded her for her self-command. When the holidays were over, and her brothers went daily to school, she found it much easier to pass the day without ill-temper, while the few hours that they were at home morning and evening were a source of real pleasure to her. Tired of being alone, she was always glad when five o'clock came, and having no other companion near her own age, she began to treat Frederick with far more consideration. Frederick's attachment to his sister quickly increased. He naturally felt both proud and pleased to be the partner of all her little schemes, and to see her assisting him in his own occupations. If Frederick were drawing out wheels for his cardboard coaches, Clara's neat hand cut out the delicate spokes: if a kite were to be made, Clara superintended the paste, or devised the ornaments. Still it is not surprising that Clara, so long accustomed to her mother's society, should desire older companions than her



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CAROLINE. 35 and in different parts of the hall. The vapour of the brimstone soon overpowered the bees, and they dropped down in great numbers; and the gardener crushed them by hundreds as they lay stupified on the floor. In the midst of this confusion, while the eyes of the young people were smarting, and they were coughing with the suffocating fumes of the brimstone that filled the house, their mother arrived. What is the matter ?" said she, "that, all down the road, the bees should be out in such numbers, and so agitated ?" Ask the queen-bee, mamma," said William, halflaughing. "She wants a hive in the hall." "I am ndt"the queen-bee," cried Caroline, the tears rolling down her cheeks with vexation, and with the pain she was suffering from the stings, and the brimstone fumes. "I could not help it." "No, indeed," said Henry, laughing, William is mistaken. I think we should rather say that the drone, and not the queen-bee, has done all the mischief. If it had not been for the gardener's brimstone I think the poor thing would have been killed by her angry pursuers." It is not my fault," said Caroline, angrily. I will not be called a drone." "Hush-hush !" interrupted her mother, do not add ill-temper to indolence. Repair the mischief 3 2



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FRANCES MEADOWS. 1o1 gone. Her presence was an evident restraint to her companions. Scarcely a word was interchanged with her. Mortification respecting the uncertainty of the prize, and distrust, made every one feel uncomfortable. In the course of the day Frances had occasion to go into a hay-loft to search for some barley for her rabbits, which she had well-nigh forgotten to feed. She was surprised to find Dora seated in a corner of the loft, crying bitterly. What is the matter, Dora? said she. "Nothing, nothing," answered Dora, quickly: "what makes you think there is anything the matter?" I thought you had hurt yourself," said Frances; "but if you do not wish me to know, never mind. Would you like to feed my rabbits?" "How kind you are, Frances; I shall never be good like you," and Dora sobbed again. My dear Dora," exclaimed Frances, her former idea again entering her mind, "do answer me one question, and tell me the real truth. When you got up this morning, before your sister was awake, you told me you were going to fetch your doll from the parlour, for fear Pompey should spoil it. Did you touch the journal ?" "No, no, no; indeed, I did not I" replied Dora, with eagerness.



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CLARA TRAVERS. 53 I do not know," replied Mr. Travers; "if your mamma hears that you are all happy and goodtempered at home, she will most probably stay with your aunt for two months, that she may return home strong and well." Oh, papa!" exclaimed Frederick, "I should be unhappy if our foolish little quarrels were to make mamma come home before she is quite well. I am sure I should like her to stay till she is able to work with us in the garden, as she used to do. How happy we were then!" Yes, we were indeed," said Mr. Travers, and that these pleasures may come again, we must all try to make one another as happy as we can." The children were very glad of their father's assistance that evening, in scheming amusements for them. Dull at parting with their mother, they felt rather disinclined to amuse themselves with their usual occupations; but Mr. Travers soon set them to work, and with cardboard and compasses, jack straws and chess, the evening passed pleasantly. Clara knew not half the difficulties she should meet with, when she promised her mother to strive to be gentle and forbearing. She had lost the occupation which had constantly employed her for the last few weeks, and she often felt listless from the want of employment. This did not increase her good-humour, when little vexations arose. It certainly was pro-



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CAROLINE. 37 were thrown open, the torpid bees were carried out, and the agitation of the neighbouring hives gradually subsided. A little hartshorn and oil was then applied to the wounds of those who had been stung. The morrow came, the long-looked-for and wishedfor day, that was to bring back their father after so long an absence. All was bustle and joy. It was a holiday for all. The boys packed up the fire-works which they had made in some, tin cases that had held gunpowder; and collected the necessary materials for the bonfire on the top of the hill where they meant to light it. The girls prepared all things for their father's refreshment, and gathered a basket of their own ripe currants, ready to take with them when they went to meet him. It was a beautiful day in August-warm and clear. The afternoon was impatiently expected; and when dinner was concluded, the young people went to prepare themselves to meet their father. At five o'clock everything was in readiness. They set off, but were scarcely outside the garden-gate, when it was discovered that one of Caroline's stockings had a large hole in it. Her mother stopped, and pointed it out to her. Caroline blushed, and was silent. On a day of so much happiness and expected pleasure, I will forgive even this disgraceful unti-



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HARRIET'S TRIALS. 77 great pleasure.' What do you think the man would have said?" I should have said, I had rather you would pull me out of the ditch now, and I will take care not to fall into the river,' said Harriet. That would be the answer of most people, I believe," said her mother. And now, my dear children, I wish, if you have done your breakfasts, that you would find something else to do; we have talked long enough )n this subject." Her mother's observations made a great impression upon Harriet; for, although hasty and petulant, she was not self-willed. But she gave a desponding sigh, when she reflected how often she had resolved to cure herself of impatience, and how ill she had kept her resolution. Only last year," thought she, "when I scolded Anne so terribly, for leaving my bird's cage open, and made her cry so loud, and wake poor Edward, who was so ill at the time, I did say then I would never be in a passion again; and yet, though I am a year older, I am no better; indeed, I think I am worse. However, I will try. I recollect, when I first tried to sketch that great ash-tree at the end of the garden, I threw down my pencil, and said I should never do it; but mamma said I could, if I persevered; and so I did-very well, too, mamma said." Full of these good designs, Harriet went to water



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106 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. ing another to hear the punishment which you alone deserve, I might have given you up as a bad little girl whose faults I could not hope to cure; but, sorry as I am, I still hope that, as you grow up, you will earn as good a character as your sister and Frances." Dora did not answer, but she clasped Mrs. Hewson's hand between her own. "But that you may be like them, Dora, you must fully understand what honesty means, and resolve to be honest. Suppose the prize from the highest number-of marks had justly been Marian's and I had given her a book as a prize; what should you think of the girl who should take it from her box, and keep it?" Oh, ma'am! she would be a thief, if she kept things that she had no right to." "Well, and suppose the thief gave the book to another girl whom she loved dearly, would her wishing to be kind to another make her less a thief?" No; she would be a thief just the same," said Dora. "Now, Dora," continued Mrs. Hewson; "when you wrote those marks in the journal, you were attempting to steal a prize for your sister from some one who, as you fancied, was more likely to gain it. The fault is exactly the same as if you had stolen the book."



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FRANCES MEADOWS. 89 and two other girls were her competitors, and they strove with such success, that it was difficult to decide which of the four was likely to win the prize. The journal was kept in the following manner: the pages had different titles, such as "attention to lessons," "neatness and order," "punctuality," "amiable deportment," music," French," arithmetic," &c. On one side of the page welme arranged in a column, the names of the girls, with lines drawn from each across the page, and on these lines were made certain marks according to the merit of each girl. Thus, if a French exercise were fairly done, one mark was awarded, two if very well, and three if the exercise were written without a single fault. The highest number of marks at the end of the halfyear, of course decided the prize, which was given for general application and good conduct. There were several small prizes given by the masters for success in particular studies, but among the elder girls that which was to be earned by general success in all, was alone considered the prize of honour. Emma found that notwithstanding her earnest exertions to secure the prize, she had quite time enough to perform many a good-natured office for her companions. It was true she would no longer listen to the petitions of the idle and undeserving,



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78 TRAITS OF CHARACTER her flowers. Alas some one had been there before her, and Harriet's temper was put to the proof rather sooner than she expected. The first object that met her eyes was her sister Jane, a little girl three years old, mounted on a chair, busily employed in putting a huge flaring dandelion into a pot. See, how pretty !" said Jane, holding up the pot in exultation, as Harriet advanced. "Very pretty, indeed," said Harriet; "but where did you get the pot, my dear ?" There, I took out that ugly little bit of stick," said Jane, pointing to something which lay at her feet. Harriet stooped to pick it up, and what was her consternation when she discovered that the "ugly bit of stick" that Jane's busy fingers had grubbed up, was a cutting from a very choice foreign plant, which had been given to her lately by a friend of her mother's; her precious Linnea Borealis, that she had received so joyfully, was watching with so much anxiety, and which was just beginning to strike root. You little naughty creature! have I not told you a hundred times--" The sentence was begun, but not finished. "I will not, I am determined I will not fail the very first time," said Harriet; and, unable to trust her fortitude with the sight of the dandelion, which poor little Jane, her face dimpled



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HARRIET'S TRIALS. 83 clean page for a week, Edward," continued his father, "I will give you that book, The Wonders of Ellora,' that I refused to lend you last week, because you were so careless." Before the first six days of the month were gone, Edward and Harriet were almost tempted to give up their work in despair; the blots were so numerous: in the second week there were two days without a blot, in Harriet's journal, and three in Edward's. On the third they got on to Wednesday; late on Wednesday morning, something like a dispute arose about the globe, which Edward had neglected to return to his father's study, after using it. Edward said, this ought not to be reckoned a piece of carelessness, because, as he was going to use the globe again after dinner, it was not worth while to put it away: but Harriet replied, it was just as easy to fetch it out of the study, as to leave it on their mother's work-table, where the little ones could get at it; "I believe," added she, "that one of them has meddled with it already, for here is a great scratch through the island of Juan Fernandez, that was not here before, I am almost sure." "You had better be quite sure, before you find fault," said Edward; "now I think that scratch was always there." "Always there! how can you talk so foolishly:but I am talking foolishly myself," said Harriet, sud 6a



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FRANCES MEADOWS. 93 slight murmur at the bed-room door, and looking up she saw Miss Watson, followed by several of the girls, whispering and peeping over her shoulder. "No wonder that you are late this morning, Frances," exclaimed Miss Watson in an indignant tone, advancing with the open journal extended in her hand-" No wonder that you shrink from appearing among your companions! I could not have believed it possible that you could have acted so dishonourably! Oh, Frances, how we have been mistaken in you !" "What can you mean? what have I done?" said Frances, in breathless amazement. I cannot doubt that you are well aware of what I mean, Frances," replied Miss Watson. Who could have added all these marks to Emma's name but yourself? No one can suspect Emma, for she has ever shown the most exact justice to her rivals." And what have I done," said Frances, "that I should be suspected of so mean an act?" "Your well-known desire that Emma should gain the prize, affords a motive that no one else could have had," replied Miss Watson. You were observed looking at the journal the last thing yesterday night at a side table. An inkstand and pen were there also at the time. This morning the pen is gone. I will trouble you for the key of that desk which you are in so great a hurry to pack."



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96 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. Miss Watson repeated the circumstances respecting Frances. "I first questioned little Dora," continued she: "but Dora stoutly denies it; and as her sister was putting her to bed while I was writing in the journal last night, and as she was not down-stairs this morning until after I discovered the fraud, I do not see how Dora could have touched the journal. It is particularly unfortunate that I should have neglected to lock it up the very last night of the half-year." "Who was first in the schoolroom this morning?" inquired Mrs. Hewson. I was, and therefore the marks could not have been added this morning," replied Miss Watson. "It is very sad to be obliged to suspect Frances, but she certainly was alone at the side-table, after all her companions had left the room, and while we were at the other end of it. The inkstand was near her, and the pen was gone this morning. A wet pen is found in her desk. She packs her desk before any of her companions, and she is unusually late this morning. All these circumstances look very suspicious!" How many persons," said Mrs. Hewson, mournfully, "have suffered severely for faults which they never committed, from a few circumstances making it annear probable that they were guilty. As to the



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HARRIET'S TRIALS. 7r are so obvious, that you do not need my assistance to find them out." I might be silent when I feel inclined to give a sharp answer, till I could control myself so far as to give a gentle one, or I might-" "You need not look any further for a remedy, my dear sister," interrupted Edward. You would not find a better, if you were to try, from this moment till to-morrow morning." But it is not so very easy to hold one's tongue, when one is angry," said Harriet. "I assure you, mamma, I have tried sometimes, and I have not been able to succeed. I know it is not easy," answered her mother; "I know it from experience." "From experience! you, mamma!" cried all the children at once. "Now you are joking; no one ever saw you cross, or heard you give sharp answers." "You never did, I hope," replied their mother, smiling; "but when I was Harriet's age, I gave nearly as many sharp answers as she does." "Then, mamma, will you tell us, if you please, how you managed to cure yourself so completely ?" said Harriet: "perhaps I might succeed by the same means." "I believe I was chiefly cured by the numberless mortifications to which my unaccommodating temper



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HARRIETS TRIALS. 63 Harriet, angrily, and colouring with indignation; upon my word, you give me a very pretty character. Well, I will do one thing to please you all, however, I will go away, if I am so very disagreeable; you can do very well without me, I dare say," and so saying, Harriet flung down the sticks and hoop with an air of contempt, and walked away in all the dignity of sulkiness. To her no small mortification, Harriet found her companions very much of her opinion, that they could do exceedingly well without her. The merry sound of their voices, and the peals of joyous laughter, reached her ears through the screen of flowering shrubs that skirted the lawn, and divided it from a gravel walk, which Harriet paced up and down for some time, in pride and sullenness. I will not go back to them unless I am asked, I am determined," thought Harriet, and they will be glad to ask me, I know, because they will want my help;" and she thought rightly, her help was wanted. Harriet was the readiest to invent, the most skilful to execute, the best player of old games, the cleverest at new ones. Besides all these agreeable talents, Harriet had many good qualities; she was kind, generous, and sincere. What then was wanting to make her a pleasant companion? She wanted one thing, without which all the talents and good qualities in the world will not obtain for us the love and good will of others; she wanted temper.



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I I I m j



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114 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. of provision which he thought would be sufficient for his journey. At all events, he had brought as much as he could get together. Their new way of living was not at first very agreeable to the children; and when the rain fell and the wind blew, it was as much as they could do to refrain from crying and fretting. But as their father was exceedingly fond of them, and felt for their suffering, he did all that he could to make them cheerful and comfortable. They had proceeded a considerable way on their voyage without meeting any serious accident. The children had become more accustomed to the canoe, and could sing and laugh, and were altogether more merry than when they first set out. They contrived to cover themselves closely up with a blanket at night, and when they awoke in the morning, were glad to eat the piece of hard bread that their father gave them for breakfast. But the voyage proved longer than he had expected, and with all his prudent management, the provisions were exhausted before he could reach his destination. One evening the canoe arrived at a small island, and the father thought it would be well to land and stay the night there, for the weather was cold and damp, and the clouds seemed to threaten a storm. So he paddled the canoe close into the shore, aud stepping out and fastening it securely, he landed his three children, one by one. He then took out the



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CAROLINE. 39 whim, she had sacrificed the pleasure of meeting her father. She knew he would ask for her; and what would be said? This thought renewed her grief, but it also urged her to further exertion. She opened her drawers. There all was confusion. How differently were Maria's drawers kept. Everything there was laid in its place. I will try to be more industrious; I will try to be neat," said Caroline; and in a moment she turned everything out of her drawers, and put them all in order. She then mended some of her stockings; and was astonished to find how easily everything might be kept mended, and in order, by a little steady application. The dusk of the evening coming on, she could no longer see. "How long they are I I wish they would come!" said she, looking from the window. The clock struck eight, and Caroline saw at a distance a shower of bright sparks. Oh!" said she, starting up, "they are coming; that is one of Henry's serpents, and another, and another. Oh, how I wish I was with them !" She now began to hear the shouts of joy, which grew louder and louder every minute, and announced, through the darkness, that the happy party was approaching. At length they reached the gate. Caroline ran down to the house-door to meet her father. He had already learned from her mother the cause of his eldest girl's absence, and, therefore, he



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FRANCES MEADOWS. 99 giving the same pain to another, who may be quite innocent." "What a subterfuge!" muttered some ungenerous girl; I do not believe a word she says." How unkind, how unjust! exclaimed Emma, roused to indignation. "You turn every word that Frances can speak against herself. But say what you please, her happiness does not depend upon those who can speak so cruelly." Poor Frances felt that, in spite of her consciousness of her own integrity, her happiness did depend in a very great degree on the consideration of her companions; and notwithstanding, too, that she knew half of them were merely led by the opinion of others. In the flutter of her spirits, she hastily glanced over the faces of the little crowd. "I cannot bear this any longer," said she, struggling to speak before her emotion should overcome her. "I am innocent, and I am treated as guilty; and rushing from her companions, she threw herself on the bed in her own room, and gave way to the pent-up feelings, which were no longer endurable. In a few moments, she heard Emma's friendly voice beseeching her to be calm, and assuring her that all would yet be well; and then she heard another sob near her. The sob was little Dora's. Oh, I am so sorry you are unhappy," exclaimed 72



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" ----J -V-o -0-~----U 0, U U HARRIET'S TRIALS. ON a fine summer evening, a party of little girls were amusing themselves on the lawn before a country house, which belonged to the father of one of the children. Two of the elder girls were playing at Les Graces," and the younger ones were looking on, eager to see who would be the victor. They had kept up the game to eighty-seven; and Now, Mary," and Take care, Harriet," cried the lookers-on, as the arms of the players grew weary, and their aim became more unsteady. I wonder who will keep it up longest," said one of the younger children to another; I hope Mary Langham will." I don't think she will," replied her companion; Mary is always tired in these games before Harriet is." Why do you hope that Mary will win, Lucy?" Oh!" said Lucy, "because I like Mary best, she is so good-natured." Harriet is good-natured, too, sometimes," said Emma.



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102 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. "Did you see the journal on the side-table ?" "I do not know, I am sure; I only took my doll, and came up-stairs again." Frances thought within herself that Dora was absent longer than the time that was necessary to fetch the doll; but she was angry with herself for suspecting Dora, who had always been an amiable little girl, and particularly attached to her. Her tears, she thought, might be owing to some ill-said lesson; and upon hearing from one of the girls that Dora had, from inattention, lost her place in the class, and gone to the very bottom of it, which had exceedingly grieved her, Frances gave up her suspicions as unkind. Mrs. Hewson made several attempts that day to discover the truth, but without success. Every girl was examined separately except Dora; and the simple reason why she alone was left out was, that it was known that she went to bed early, and no one in the house excepting Frances was aware that she had been in the school-room between going to bed and joining her companions at the breakfasttable. Mrs. Hewson expressed her belief in the perfect innocence of Frances, having made full inquiry, and finding not one additional circumstance to implicate her, although the author of the dishonest act was still undetected. This belief, she said, was founded *i



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HARRIET'S TRIALS. 79 all over with smiles, still held up to be admired, she ran fairly out of the room. "Bravo !" said her brother Edward, who had seen what passed through a glass door; "but you should not have run away, Harriet, my dear; it is so inglorious to retreat." "Not when the danger is beyond our strength," said his mother. Harriet has done wisely to retreat this time; the next, there will be no occasion for it." It is but a shabby sort of victory that is gained by running away, however," said Edward; there is no glory in it." Now, as it happened that it had cost Harriet a good deal of effort even to run away, Edward's remark appeared to her highly unjust, and she told him so, in a much louder tone than there was any occasion for. Edward was a very goodnatured boy, and extremely fond of his sister; but he could not always resist the temptation of teasing her. He proposed that, like victors of old, Harriet should be decorated with a crown, but of what the crown should be composed he could not exactly determine. Laurel, parsley, oak leaves? No; none of them would do; they were too common; and there was something so uncommon, so exalted, in not getting into a passion with a baby, about a weed with a hard name, that it deserved as uncommon a reward. A bright thought, a bright thought!" cried Edward, jumping up, and capering about the



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FRANCES MEADOWS. III for now Dora will see how foolishly, as well as dishonestly, she acted; and she is so sorry for what she has done, that I trust she is cured for ever of attempting to deceive." Mrs. Hewson looked from one of her pupils to the other, and rejoiced at the return of so much kind and right feeling; but she had been deeply grieved at the occurrence, grieved at the deceit and want of truth of Dora, and at the injustice and unkindness of many of the girls, and after a short pause, she thus addressed her pupils: "I think, my dear young people, we ought not to cast all the blame of the sad occurrence that has taken place on Dora, bad as has been her conduct. I am now convinced that part of the blame is attributable to the system under which our prizes have hitherto been awarded. It was that system which created the strong temptation to which Dora yielded; and during the holidays I shall try to discover some plan by which the prizes shall in future depend not upon a struggle between pupil and pupil, but upon the constant exertions and progress of each girl, as measured by a general standard of excellence. If I succeed, the hope even of the highest prizes, instead of being confined to a few, will be open to every one, and all heart-burnings and temptations to deceive will, I trust, disappear." It may be interesting to some of our readers to know that the principal individuals in the above tale



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CLARA TRA VERS. 57 the garden seats, and watch over the low holly hedge for the first sight of the stage-coach. The nloment it was seen turning the corner of the road, and that the hand and white handkerchief appeared extended from the coach-window, the children darted to the front court with one joyful cry, "Mamma has come, mamma has come!" Yes, it was their beloved mother, who in a moment clasped "them in her arms. With eyes overflowing with tenderness, she looked first on one and then on another. Her joy at meeting her husband and children in health,-at seeing her daughter Clara, and all the smiling happy faces around her, was greater than can be described. She could only say, My children, my children, this is happiness!" Rosa, however, soon made them all laugh; for, wondering at the tears on" her mother's cheek, she said very gravely, Mamma, dear, are you ill? what do you cry for?" After a few moments, the children led then' mamma into the garden. Her quick eye soon perceived the fresh raked borders, the clean gravel walks, and all the little improvements and changes that her children had made. She thought drinking tea in the arbour was delightful; and, whether it was that Clara made tea better than usual, she declared she had never enjoyed any tea so much. In spite of his merry mood, Edgar contrived to speak low for that even-



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126 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. that she had trusted to the kindness of these people, and had most likely, by so doing, saved herself and brother and sister from a painful death. How happy she was, when she saw little Martin's face become less and less pale, and heard him once more laugh at the gambols of the young Indians; and shortly afterwards, she saw both Grace and him get up and romp with them. Her joy was more than can be told. But greater joy even than this was about to come for the good and brave Ruth! The Indians were on their way to some of the American towns along the banks of the river, and when the whole party had finished their morning's meal, the chief gave orders to make all ready to proceed on their voyage. These Indians, after their kind treatment of the American children, did not like to leave them behind on the island. They resolved, therefore, to make room for them in their canoe, and deliver them to the first white people that they should happen to fall in with. The Indian chief, after having settled this with his friends, called Ruth to him, and told her of his kind intention. Ruth gratefully thanked him, but she thought of her father, whom she had so long expected; and she told the chief that she could not believe that her father, who had always been so kind to them, meant to leave them on that island, and that she was persuaded he would still come for them, The Indian



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124 TRAITS OF CHARACTER forward, pulling her half-reluctant, trembling brother and sister by the hand, and as bravely as she could, she led them forth from their hiding place towards the Indian camp fire. As soon as the Indian children saw them come out from among the bushes, they set up a loud cry of surprise, which made Ruth and the two little ones quake with fear. Martin and Grace tried to run back, but their sister held fast hold of them. It is too late to go back now," said she; "the Indians have seen us, and will only come after us if we try to run away. Be brave, and come on:" and so steadily and slowly she went forward. Ruth did not stop until she came close to one of the Indian women, who sat on the outside of the circle, and who had a baby on her lap. The women all stared at the three children. They saw the tears rolling down their cold pale cheeks; when Ruth, still holding her brother and sister by the hand, said, as distinctly as she was able, and looking at the woman very earnestly, We have neither father nor mother, we are cold and hungry, be kind to us, give us some bread, and let us warm our frozen bodies at your fire." The Indians listened attentively while Ruth was speaking, and looked with pity upon the unhappy little children. Fortunately, one of the men understood the lan-



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64 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. Harriet would do much for those she loved; she would willingly assist them through any difficulty in their work, or their play; she was ready to explain the most knotty points in the French grammar; to play over a difficult passage of music; and her abundant stock of toys was almost as much at the service of her companions as at her own. But with all this readiness to oblige, Harriet failed in securing the love of her associates. She was continually saying some hasty or unkind thing, in the irritation of the moment; not very seriously intended at the time, and forgotten five minutes after-or, if thought of, quickly apologized for, to herself, -" Because," thought she, though I was a little hasty and passionate, every one knows I have a good heart." This phrase of a "good heart,"-and the habit of thinking a good heart an excuse for a bad temper, Harriet had acquired from a well-meaning but not very wise aunt with whom she had spent a considerable time during the absence of her mother from England. The two ideas at length became so confused in her mind, that Harriet was in some danger of learning to think that a bad temper did not signify where there was a good heart. It was fortunate for the little girl that the return of her mother saved her from a mistake that might have made her unhappy for life. Long and impatiently Harriet continued to pace up and down the gravel walk, listening to the voices



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22 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. Let us save the white currants that are getting ripe, for him," said Caroline: the white currants on our tree. Maria, will you give your half?" Oh, yes, that I will; and let us take the best to him. He will like them so much after his long journey," said Maria. Everything was thus pleasantly arranged. The boys were to make the fire-works and to collect the materials for the bonfire, and to convey them to the place, which was three quarters of a mile from the house. Having settled their plans, the children, eager as they were to see their father, could not help hoping that he would arrive sufficiently late to allow their bonfire and fire-works to be seen to advantage. Caroline's improved activity continued in full force for two or three days; and then little by little her long-indulged habit, of indolence crept over her again, and began to conquer her. A few minutes later each morning soon destroyed her early rising. She was again as usual the last down, and she had the mortification of seeing the servant fetch the key, and of knowing that her mother rose early and went to the dairy herself. Her mother's health was not strong, and the extra fatigue that she had was easily to be traced in the paleness of her countenance. Every day Caroline said, "I will be up in time to-morrow;" and every morrow Caroline only



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4 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. "I never will, papa, Besides, you know, I cannot forget it, because it will chirp, it will hop about; and that will make me recollect. It will make me careful." "Well then," said Mr. Gourlay, "I will try your memory and let you buy the bird." So saying, he accompanied Josephine to the house, she pulling him by his hand, of which she never quitted her hold. Having opened the house door, he beckoned to the man to come to them. The man came, and Josephine chose a bird, the prettiest, as she thought, of all that were in the cage. It was a male canary, with the most brilliant yellowcoloured feathers, and with a black tuft upon his head. She handed her purse to her father that he might pay for the bird, and Mr. Gourlay drew out his own purse from his pocket and bought a neat cage, which had a seed-trough and a glass waterbottle fixed to it on the outside. Into this cage the bird was put, and then the man placed the cage in the hands of the eager Josephine, who, full of joy, ran into the house with her prize. Her father shortly followed her, and drove in a hook near the window, upon which she hung the cage. When she had done this, she called first her mother, and then the ser"vants, to come and look at her sweet bird. They all agreed that it was a beautiful little creature, and her mother hoped it would be happy also.



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82 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. one for you; I will keep yours, and you shall keep mine." Edward took two sheets of large paper, and ruled seven perpendicular lines, which he crossed by horizontal lines; and at the head of each column, he wrote the name of a day in the week. On the left of the first line he wrote ORDER in small capitals in his own list, and MILDNESS in his sister's. Every time Edward left his books or pencils, &c. lying about, after he had done with them, Harriet was to make a dot in ink; and when Harriet allowed herself to be made angry, by any of those trifling differences of inclination or opinion which must always occur, when two or three people are constantly together, Edward was to place a dot on her paper. When the lists were made out, Harriet carried them into the room where their father and mother were sitting, and explained the plan to them. They both smiled, and their father said that he thought it would be a very good plan until Edward and Harriet had acquired the habit of order and gentleness of speech, but, then, it would be better to lay the lists aside, lest they should accustom themselves to censure, and find fault with each other; and also because, as they grew older, they must learn to exercise self-control without any such mechanical helps. If at the end of a month, you can show me a.



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TO TRAITS OF CHARACTER. requiring Josephine to part with him. I cannot," he said, allow the poor helpless bird to go through such torments again." The next morning, after breakfast, he consulted Mrs. Gourlay about sending the bird away. Josephine was present at their conversation. She had felt cheerful again, when, upon coming down to breakfast, she saw Mimi upon his perch, cleaning his feathers. She had once more resolved always to feed him the first thing, and this morning she had done so. But when her father spoke of taking the bird from her, she burst into tears. My poor bird, my darling Mimi! Oh! dear papa, do not be so unkind; pray do not take my little favourite from me. I am so sorry. I will never, never forget him again. Dear little Mimi, don't go away." Josephine," said her father, "I do not wish to be unkind to you, but I cannot suffer this helpless creature to be so cruelly used. If you will not take care of him, I must. He is shut up within four wire walls. Not being able to speak, he cannot fsk for food; and not having his liberty,, he cannot help himself when he feels hungry. You are either too much occupied, or too careless, to think of him, and, therefore, it will be better for him to be sent to some one with more time or inclination to attend to his wants."



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84 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. denly recollecting herself,-" and there is a blot for me-what a pity! I did think I should have had a clean page to-day." And a blot for me," said Edward; it was only an excuse to say I should want the globe again after dinner: I meant to have put it away, but the truth is, I forgot it." The last week was a triumphant one for both; all were unanimous in declaring that not an angry word had been heard from Harriet, though William and Jane twice upset her water-glass, when she was drawing; and repeatedly turned out the contents of her work-box, in search of some trifling article to amuse themselves with; nor was the whole house disturbed, when Edward was going to school, because his books, or rulers, or maps, or gloves were not to be found in the proper place. A clean page, I see by your face," said his father, when Edward entered his room on the last morning of the month. I expected it, for I have been watching you, and there is the book I promised to give you." Edward thanked his father, took up the book, admired the plates; thanked him again, but still he lingered, and looked as if he wished to say something. Well, what is it, my boy? what are you going to say?" asked his father, who had been observing his motions. "I was going to say, that if you would not be dis-



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CLARA TRA VERS. 59 voice read the following words, which were engraved on the back of the locket in very small but very clear characters, "For the good daughter and the kind sister." Then it must be for you, Clara," said Frederick. "I am sure you have been a good daughter, and a kind sister too. You have done all you could to make us happy while mamma has been away, and what could you do more ?" There, Clara, dear, you see there is no mistake," said Mrs. Travers, as she smilingly kissed her daughter, and placed the hair chain round her neck. Keep it ever, my dear, as a remembrance of your mother's love;-still more, let it remind you how much that love was increased by your early striving to cure yourself of your faults."



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130 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. return; and glad I am to find you all alive. We must restore the canoe to its generous owner, and, as this kind friend of the log-house can give me work, I do not intend to go any further down the river, but shall settle with him to whom we all owe our lives."



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RUTH, THE AMERICAN GIRL. 127 looked grave, and told her that he should nevertheless take her, Grace, and Martin with him-" for," said he, "if I leave you, and your father should not come back, you will die with cold and hunger-your father may have met with an accident, or may be dead." So Ruth said no more, but followed the Indians towards the canoe. The canoe had been pulled in close to the shore, and some of the people and children had got into it, when another canoe, with two men in it, appeared in sight. Martin saw it first, and shouted out, "Oh! our father has come; our father has come!" and he clapped his hands, and danced about with joy. The Indians paused, and looked at the canoe as it approached; and Ruth, with a beating heart, looked too, and ran a little way along the shore to see better. Yes, she was right-her father, if he was alive, would never leave them on that island to die of cold and hunger. It was her father, and most anxiously did he gaze upon the shore. He trembled for his children; he could not see them at first among the group of Indians. He feared, lest the cold should have killed them. But at last, when he stood up in the canoe, he saw Ruth running along the shore, and his two youngest with the Indian children. He waved his hand to them. He could not speak, he was so overcome with joy at finding them alive, and seeing them so well and happy.



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70 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. vexation; but, when he went on to tell her not to mind, that she would be wiser another time, and to think no more about the matter, Harriet's mother interrupted him. "My dear Edward," said she, "you are giving your sister the worst advice possible, although with the kindest intentions. To avoid thinking of her faults, will not teach Harriet to be wiser another time. Let her rather continue to think of them, till she can find out how it is that she, who is so well disposed, can so often give pain to those who love her, by her want of self-command." I am sure I do not know, mamma," said Harriet, sighing; "no one can be more sorry than I am, when I have done wrong; I wish I could conquer my impatience." "Do you really wish it? asked her mother. "Oh, mamma, how can you ask such a question ? To be sure, I wish to get rid of my faults; and so does everybody, I suppose." I suppose so too, provided they could get rid of them without any trouble: but they cannot be very sincere in the wish, or they would take the proper means." "What are the proper means, mamma? If you will tell me what I ought to do, I will do it; that is, I will try." "My dear child," said her mother, "the means



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CAROLINE. 21 we shall all go to meet him," said their mother; "but so great a treat can only belong to the industrious. Let us therefore have a good account of nothing left undone every day." Their mother then read the letter to them. The two boys, Henry and William, began to think of the manner in which they should receive their father. But their mother begged them to talk of all that in the morning, as it was now bed-time. The young people obeyed; and Caroline went to bed full of schemes of happiness. Her father had been absent from home more than three months, and all his children expected his return with eagerness and delight. Caroline and her brothers met early the next morning to settle their plans of rejoicing for their father's return. William proposed that they should make a large bonfire on the top of the hill which gives, as he said, the first glimpse of home. "Yes," said Henry; "and we will be there, and we will have a famous lot of fire-works; and as soon as our father appears in sight, we will send up a serpent." Oh, that will be beautiful," said Caroline; but it will be finer still if we each of us send one off at the same time." And mamma says I may go with you, if it is not much past nine," said little Maria. I shall run and kiss papa first."



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RUTH, THE AMERICAN GIRL. 115 blanket, and gave it to Ruth, and again stepping into the canoe, he began to search thoroughly the bags which had held his provisions. To his great sorrow he found that these bags were quite empty. Every fragment of food that he had brought was eaten. What was he to do? The children asked him for their supper, and he had no supper to give them. Full of sorrow at the sad disappointment to his children, he again searched the canoe, but with no better success. Not a single morsel of food could be found. Shall I," thought he, leave my poor children without any supper this cold night, or shall I cross the river to the opposite shore, before it grows darker, and try to find some people from whom I may get food?" He determined to go at once, and so he told his children that he would paddle across the river, and would very soon return to them. When the children heard him say this, they were much frightened, and rushed towards the canoe to get into it again; and all three loudly begged him not to leave them by themselves in that lonely place. But he told them to be patient and to stand back from the canoe. I will soon return," said he; "I shall go much quicker without you, because the canoe will be lighter. Stay here till I come back, and I will bring you a comfortable supper; and, Ruth," continued he, "be careful of your little bro8



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HARRIET'S TRIALS. 75 That was better than getting into a passion, certainly; but the worst of it is, I never think so till it is too late, and I cannot unsay what I have said, however sorry I may be." No; but you can avoid committing a similar fault another time." Yes," said Harriet, hesitatingly; but,"-and at this word but" she made a long pause. "But what, my dear?" said her mother, after waiting some time for the rest of Harriet's speech. I was going to say something, mamma, but I am afraid you will think it very foolish." "Let me hear it, however." "I was going to say-to ask-if-if-temper was of such very great consequence-I mean when Iwhen people have good hearts, mamma ?" I will not find fault with your expression, my dear," said her mother, smiling; "because, as your meaning is not, I believe, very clear, even to yourself, it is no wonder that your language should be confused. Before I answer your question, I should like to know what you mean by a good heart?" Oh, mamma, I am sure you know very well what I mean. Have you not often lie._J people say of other people that their hearts were good, though they were not very good-tempered." Yes; I have heard many say so; but they spoke



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FRANCES MEADOWS. o10 had gone down-stairs early in the morning for the doll that Frances had newly dressed for her, without thinking at all about the journal, but that, seeing it on the table with the pen and ink near it, she had all of a sudden thought how easily she could secure the prize for her sister, and that no one could find out what she did. "I thought," said she, "that nobody would be blamed, and that Emma would be so happy, and that Frances, and all who love Emma, would be pleased, and papa too. When I saw how soon Miss Watson found out what I had done I was frightened, and when she asked me if I made the marks, I told a lie; but I did not think that any one would suspect Frances. If I had, I think I could have told all, for next to Emma I love Frances better than any one. After I had denied it, I was afraid of telling the truth. I was very unhappy, and the more Frances was blamed the more miserable I was. She would not tell you that I had been down-stairs this morning, although she knew it very well, because she believed I spoke the truth;-I who have made everybody accuse her. What shall I do? what shall I do? No one will love me any more." Yes, Dora," said Mrs. Hewson; since you have had the courage to own your faults, grievous as they are, you may still hope that your friends will continue to love you. If you had persevered in allow-



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FRANCES MEADOWS. 103 upon the character for uprightness that Frances had previously earned, and which one or two slightly suspicious circumstances could not shake. "I regret extremely," added she, "that I cannot discover the guilty individual, but that cannot in any manner alter my opinion of a person with an established good character." These expressions cheered Frances extremely, for she loved and valued Mrs. Hewson's good opinion. To her great disappointment, however, her companions were not much influenced by Mrs. Hewson's remarks. They continued to act nearly as distrustfully to her as before. As the elder girls bade Mrs. Hewson good-night before they retired to rest, Mrs. Hewson observed, by Frances' countenance, how grieved she seemed to be at the behaviour of her companions, and she followed her to her room. My dear Frances," said she, I wish I could prevent the injustice of your school-fellows, but I really do not know what other means to use to discover the offender, unless you will tell me the name of the person you suspect, and rely on my endeavours to search out the truth." "Pray, do, dear Frances," said Emma. Surely you can trust Mrs. Hewson to be just to every one !" "Yes, I caii trust Mrs. Hewson, but not others,"



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RUTH, THE AMERICAN GIRL. 125 guage that Ruth spoke, for he had often been with beaver and deer skins to the American towns, to exchange them for blankets and other things that the Indians do not know how to make. This man came forward and took Ruth by the hand, and led her and her companions into the circle of the Indians. HIow conifortable the warmth of the fire felt to these shivering children! Grace seeing some of the women smiling kindly, began to lose her fear, and whispered to Martin that she was glad they had come. But poor little Martin still held Ruth tight, and kept his eyes fixed on the ground. The Indian then asked Ruth how it happened that they should be in such a lonely'place as that island, without anybody to take care of them. Ruth, more and more encouraged by the kind looks of these wild people, told the man her sad tale, asked him if he had seen her father, and again begged for food for herself and the little ones. When Ruth had finished her tale, the Indian man turned to some of his people, and spoke in his own language, and immediately one of the women brought some food to the children, and kindly seated them near the fire, and made signs to them to eat. Most thankfully did the half-starved children receive the food, and eagerly did they eat it. As they warmed their limbs and satisfied their hunger, they felt more happy and less afraid. Ruth rejoiced greatly



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CAMDEN PRESS, LONDON, N.W.



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FRANCES MEADOWS; OR, CHARACTER. "CAN any of you really think it possible that Emma Munro will gain the prize ? inquired Marian Grant of some of her companions, with whom she was walking in the garden a week after they had returned to school. "I not only think it possible, but very probable," replied Frances Meadows. "If my friend Emma had not so kind and complying a disposition, she would have gained a prize before now." "But she has no energy, no determination to excel," continued Marian; she never attempted to win double marks in the journal by extra exertion, or the upper places in the classes."



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6 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. he saw her approaching, he would clap his wings and chirp "Cuic, cuic," which so pleased the little girl, that she quite longed to take him in her hands and kiss him heartily. When Mimi was in the humour for singing, Josephine was more charmed than ever. Sometimes he would warble little tunes, and roll his voice in his throat for such a length of time, that it was quite astonishing that he could bear to hold his breath so long; then, stopping an instant, out he would break in a fresh clear note, so strong and piercing, that it might be heard from top to bottom of the house. It is impossible to describe in words how much Josephine delighted in this bird. She used to sit at her needle-work, beneath his cage, listening and singing to him by turns. During the first three weeks Josephine knew no pleasure but her bird; and, for the sake of looking at him, she neglected many little duties. But gradually she began to think less of this pleasure. About a month after she had bought the canary, her uncle sent her a book of prints, and she was immediately so occupied with them, that Mimi was less noticed. He chirped out his note of welcome, Cuic, cuic," but Josephine did not seem to hear it, and did not reply to it as usual. Nearly one whole week passed away without the bird's tasting any fresh chickweed, or biscuit, or



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52 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. to your brothers and Rosa, and then, dearest Clara, I can be content to leave them to your care." The colour mounted in Clara's cheeks, and the tears started in her eyes, as she remembered her angry feelings, and angry tones a few days before. Mother," said she, her voice half choked with emotion, I know I am often wrong, but I will try to be as gentle as you wish me to be. Only, dear mamma, go with my aunt, and you shall see that I can be trusted." I will, I will, my love," softly answered Mrs. Travers, as she pressed her daughter's hand, and sunk her head on her pillow, exhausted with the short conversation. The next day preparation was made for the departure of Mrs. Travers. Without bustle or noise, Clara arranged and packed everything that was necessary for her mother's comfort. Mr. Travers accompanied his wife and sister part of the journey, and when he returned, he found Clara making tea for her brothers and sister, and in spite of Clara's red eyes, they all looked cheerful and smiling. Why, my dear Clara, you will be quite a little mamma to them," said he, as he patted her cheek, and placed his chair beside her. Will mamma stay a long time away?" inquired Fred.



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CLARA TRA VERS. 43 more than usually ill during the absence of her husband on one of his most distant journeys. Hoping she might soon recover, she would not allow Clara to write to her father, as she felt reluctant to alarm him needlessly, or to hasten his return. Day after day passed, and the anxious little girl saw her mother becoming worse and worse, until the very sound of the children's voices was no longer endurable to her. The joyous laugh and the painful cry equally affected her mother's head, and Clara knew not how to guard her from them, as her little brothers were at home for the Midsummer holidays. They were good-tempered, merry little fellows, and certainly did not wish to add to their mother's sufferings, but it was a difficult matter to make them understand, or at least to make them remember that the loud shout, the crack of the whip, and the heavy tread, could occasion any pain to their mother. There is one thing, it must be owned, which partly accounts for the difficulty that Clara met with in persuading her brothers and sister to be quiet. Clara had not usually a kind manner of speaking to them, and as no one likes to be treated rudely, they frequently refused to obey her. When she addressed either of them with Child, you are not to make so much noise;" Child, leave that alone;" "Mr. Disagreeable, you care for no one but yourself;" the tone and language were so different to



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44 Ac-



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FRANCES MEADOWS. 109 if she had been older, and had had more sense and reflection; and that her deep sorrow for her fault, and her courage in confessing it, afforded great reason to hope she would never do anything similar for the future. Dora will remain in my room till she returns home," added she, and I hope, after the holidays, no conduct of yours will make her repent that she confessed her fault, but that you will all encourage her in her endeavours to recover her character." How sorry I am that I spoke so unkindly to Frances." How unjust we were." What shall we say to her?" were expressions that were whispered about, as Emma conducted her little sister to Mrs. Hewson's room. With respect to the prize," said Mrs. Hewson, "the marks in the journal no longer serve me as a guide. The only plan that I can think of is, that the few girls who were undoubtedly the foremost should draw lots." There was some hesitation in agreeing to this plan, many declaring that the chief struggle lay between Emma and Marian, who, they thought, had outstripped their companions; and others again affirming that Emma, before the journal was touched, had decidedly the best chance. On Emma's entering the schoolroom again, however, all parties agreed to the plan, and a few strips of paper were



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Frederick Warne & Co., Publishers. WARNE'S USEFUL BOOKS. In fcap. 8vo, limp cloth or fancy boards, price is. each. BIRD-KEEPING. A Practical Guide. By the Author of "Home Pets." ENGLISH WILD FLOWERS By J. T. BURGESS. With practical Illustrations. MICROSCOPE BOOK FOR EVERYBODY. By M. C. COOKE. 1000 objects. THE MODERN FENCER. By T. GRIFFITHS. With 24 pages of Plates. MODERN ATHLETICS. By H. F. WILKINSON. THE HORSE: How to Feed Him. By GEORGE ARMATAGE, M.R.C.V.S. THE HORSEOWNER AND STABLEMAN'S COMPANION. By GEORGE ARMATAGE, M.R.C.V.S. COMMON SHELLS OF THE SEA-SHORE. SEA-WEEDS. By Mrs. LANE CLARKE. FLOWERS AND THE FLOWER GARDEN. VEGETABLES: How to Grow Them. FISH, and How to Cook It. By ELIZABETH WATTS. THE COMPANION LETTER WRITER. THE MODERN GYMNAST. By CHARLES SPENCER. POULYRY: Their Breeding, Rearing, Feeding, &c. ANGLING : A Practical Guide to Bottom Fishing, Spinning, Fly Fishing, and Sea Fishing. By G. T. BURGESS. THE ORCHARD AND FRUIT GARDEN. A FERN BOOK FOR EVERYBODY. With numerous Illustrations and Page Plates. By M. C. COOKE. HIDDEN SENSE: Seek and Find; or, Double Acrostics. By E. L. BABINGTON. With Illustrations. SUNDAY ACROSTICS. From Names and Words in the Bille. By Mrs. OGILVY. EXECUTORS', ADMINISTRATORS', dND TRUSTEES' GUIDE. By H. B. INGRAM. With full Directions about Wills. Bedford Street, Covent Garden.



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20 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. was ready to go into the dairy and wanted the key, Caroline first rubbed her eyes, saying she was very sleepy, and that it was very early; and then remembering the many new-formed resolutions of not indulging in indolence, she told the maid that she would soon be ready. She did not give up the key. This morning she had the satisfaction of feeling that she did her duty; for she herself unlocked the dairy before six o'clock, and while the butter was churned, she saw the new-milk measured; and when the butter had been washed and weighed, she put down the quantity of both milk and butter into the book. Her younger sister Maria fed the poultry; and the young people met their mother at breakfast with a good account of morning duties .well performed. The day so well begun was equally well continued. Caroline deserved and received her mother's praise for her good conduct; and when the merry party met at supper, her mother, taking a letter from her pocket, told her children that she had some good news which they little expected-that in a fortnight they would see their father. This news was received with a general shout of joy. "We will go and meet him," was the first cry. Will he come in the morning or evening, dear mother? Read all his letter, pray do!" ",He will not arrive till the evening, and I hope



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CAROLINE. ly When the boys were assembled, Henry asked his mother to come and sit in the tent which he had put up, and look on at their game; and Caroline, as if she had nothing to do but amuse herself, took her seat in it also. Henry was soon called to bowl, and to do this more easily he took off his jacket. The rags that his sister obliged him to put on were now displayed in public. The rent had increased so much that the whole of his shoulder was bare. His companions laughed and joked, telling him that he was cool and airy. I must put on my hot jacket, I suppose," said he, for I am really ashamed to be seen." When he came to, the tent for his jacket, the state of his linen was observed by his mother. My dear boy," said she, pray, go in and change those rags. How came you to wear such a shirt?" Henry looked at Caroline, and she, colouring very deeply as her mother looked at her also, stammered out a few unmeaning words in a sorrowful tone, but was quite unable to make an excuse. Seeing her confused looks, her mother said no more, but taking hold of her daughter's hand, instantly returned to the house, and going to Henry's drawers, began to take out and unfold the linen. Caroline now burst into tears. Dear mother," said Henry, who had followed, in hopes of finding a shirt that he could wear, Caro-



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CLARA TRA VERS. 47 mamma will not hear me, and I may sit at her door sometimes if I like, because then I can hear her speak." Clara immediately gave up urging her sister to leave the room, which was on the same floor as her mother's, and giving her a few playthings, she left her to attend to Mrs. Travers. She sat with her mother for an hour, and was thinking how happily she had occupied her brothers and sister, when Edgar's loud voice struck her ear, and made her mother start from her short sleep, "Do not be frightened, dear mamma !" exclaimed Clara. "It is only Edgar, and you know he always speaks loud." She ran out of the room to still the uproar, when the first thing she saw was Edgar struggling with Frederick, the mug of water upset on the table, and her paint box,-her beautiful paint box-filled with water. Frederick was striving to prevent Edgar Sfrom touching the pallet, and both the boys were disputing as loud as they could. "You troublesome children!" exclaimed Clara, with her voice raised, and crying from vexation. "You are the rudest, the most disagreeable boys in the world; I will never lend you anything again. You spoil everything that I have!" Oh! oh! Clara, that is not true," replied Frederick. "You know that I do not injure your things; I did not upset the water, Elgar did it in



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RUTH, THE AMERICAN GIRL. 119 comfortable:" and at last she saw them drop quietly asleep. For a long time, Ruth kept herself awake watching them, and listening also attentively for the sound of her father's return. At last, her own wearied body was overpowered by drowsiness, and she fell fast asleep, pressing her little companions closely in her arms. And these poor orphans slept as soundly on that lonely island, as they had ever done when put into a comfortable bed by their mother, forgetting, as they slept, their troubles of cold and hunger. Morning came, and the children awoke from their sleep. They awoke refreshed and rested from the fatigue of the over-night, but they were very hungry. Whence were they to get food? Ruth had none to give them, and their petitions for a bit of breadonly a little bit of bread, made the tears roll down her cheeks, for she was unable to relieve their hunger. No help seemed near. Ruth looked wistfully over the broad river, but no canoe was to be seen. Suddenly, however, she gave a loud shriek of joy. Our father! our father!" "Where? where?" cried Martin and Grace. "I see a canoe," said Ruth; "look to the right of that large tree." Oh, yes; oh, yes," shouted the delighted children, "there is our dear father coming with bread; hurra I hurra I"



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50 TRAITS OF CHARACTER. putes, the idea of being unable to continue her care of them was exceedingly painful. She had hoped that Clara's strong attachment to herself, which had led her to take gieat pains to amuse her brothers and sisters, would have also gradually habituated her to bear good-humouredly the little provocations that happen in a young family; but now she could only sigh, and grieve that she could not alter a conduct, which, notwithstanding Clara's many good qualities, rendered her really unamiable. Every spare minute of that afternoon and the next was spent by Clara, or her brothers, in watching for their aunt Elwyn's arrival. At length a carriage stopped, and the gentlest of knocks made Clara's heart beat with joy. Her aunt had arrived, and half Clara's anxiety was over. From that time Clara had no more trouble in providing for the quiet of her mother, by planning occupations for the children. Mrs. Elwyn arranged everything for the comfort of her sister, and the happiness of the young people. Her nephews and nieces obeyed her as if she were their mother, because, like her, she was always gentle, affectionate, and just. The doctors assured Mrs. Elwyn that change of air was absolutely necessary to promote her sister's recovery, as well as perfect quiet from the noise of a country town, and a young family.. Mrs. Elwyn, therefore, only waited for the return of Mr. Travers



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HARRIET'S TRIALS. 81 Edward showed the passage to Harriet, and asked her how she would like to keep such a list, and whether she should have the courage to make a blot against the word "mildness," every time she failed in that particular. Harriet said she thought she should have the courage, but that she did not see the use of it. You know, Edward," said she, that I have kept my resolution pretty well hitherto. You say yourself, that I am not half so apt to give cross looks and sharp answers as I was a month ago, and it would be very disagreeable to see everything one did wrongly written down." "So it would," said Edward; "but I think we should take more care for that very reason. I know that I, for one, should hate to have a long row of blots staring me in the face every time I opened my desk. I'll tell you what we will do; I want to cure myself of my slovenly habits. I have lost two rulers, and three black-lead pencils, within the last fortnight, because I never think of putting anything away after I have used it; and if mamma had not luckily come into my room yesterday morning, after I was gone to school, papa's pocket compass that he had lent me would have been spoiled. I left it in little Will's reach, and he was just going to hammer away at the glass to get out that funny shaking thing. I will make two lists, one for myself, and 6