The lost child

MISSING IMAGE

Material Information

Title:
The lost child
Physical Description:
41, 1 p. : ill. ; 23 cm.
Language:
English
Creator:
Kingsley, Henry, 1830-1876
Frølich, Lorenz, 1820-1908 ( Illustrator )
Macmillan & Co ( Publisher )
R. Clay, Sons, and Taylor ( Printer )
Publisher:
Macmillan and Co.
Place of Publication:
London ;
New York
Manufacturer:
R. Clay, Sons and Taylor
Publication Date:
Edition:
2nd ed.

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords:
Children -- Conduct of life -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Conduct of life -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Missing children -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Obedience -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Children -- Death -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Animals -- Juvenile fiction -- Australia   ( lcsh )
Description and travel -- Juvenile fiction -- Australia   ( lcsh )
Publishers' advertisements -- 1872   ( rbgenr )
Hand-colored illustrations -- 1872   ( local )
Bldn -- 1872
Genre:
Publishers' advertisements   ( rbgenr )
Hand-colored illustrations   ( local )
novel   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage:
England -- London
United States -- New York -- New York

Notes

Statement of Responsibility:
by Henry Kingsley ; illustrated by L. Frölich.
General Note:
Engraved title vignette.
General Note:
Publisher's advertisements follow text.
General Note:
Baldwin Library copy illustrations are hand-colored: probably by young owner.
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 - 002223971
notis - ALG4227
oclc - 59007013
System ID:
UF00026599:00001

Full Text
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zBe reLooking eagerly across the water FRONTmP


THE LOST CHILDI VHENRY KINGSLEYAnd there he f tood naked a i d free on the forbidden groetndILLU iSTATE 7D BLY L I AOLICILSECOND EDITIONflnbanMACMILLAN AND CO1872


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PREFACEIT is only natural that an author shouldsay a few words about a republicationof this kind The story in its separateform has the advantage of being illustrated by an eminent artist whosespecial qualifications are widely knownand acknowledged and it seemed toall concerned best that it should beleft entirely untouched The first twoparagraphs and the last short one aresimply added no other liberty has beentaken with itTo avoid the trouble of those greatplagues of literature foot notes theauthor asks the reader to submit to afew very trifling explanationsQuantongs are a bush fruit of aboutA2


8 PREFA CEthe same quality as green gooseberriesbut like the last named fruit verymuch sought after by the native youthThe Bunyip is the native river devilor kelpie evidently the crocodile of theNorthern Australian rivers whose recognition by the Southern natives intheir legends shows if nothing elsedid that the centre of dispersion inAustralia was from the North asDoctor Laing told us years agoWith regard to the habit which lostchildren have of aimless climbing theauthor knew a child who being lostby his father while out shooting on oneof the flats bordering on the EasternPyrenees in Port Phillip on Sundayafternoon was found the next Wednesday dead at an elevation above theAvoca township of between two andthree thousand feet


LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONSPAiGESOMETIMES LOOKING EAGERLY ACROSS THE WATER AT THEWAVING FOREST BOUGHS FrontAND THERE HE STOOD NAKED AND FREE ON THE FORBIDDENGROUND gne eMOTHER WHAT COUNTRY IS THAT ACROSS THE RIVER 15A KANGAROO A SNAKE AN EAGLE 2IHE WAS LOST IN THE BUSH 25HE CAME ON THE BALD THUNDER SMITTEN SUMMIT RIDGE 29WE HAVE COME TO HELP YOU MISTRESS 33THERE HE LAY DEAD AND STIFF 39


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THE LOST CHILDREMEMBER Yes I remember wellthat time when the disagreement arosebetween Sam Buckley and Cecil andhow it was mended You are wrongabout one thing General no wordsever passed between those two youngmen death was between them beforethey had time to speakI will tell you the real story old asI am as well as either of them couldtell it for themselves and as I tell itI hear the familiar roar of the oldsnowy river in my ears and if I shutmy eyes I can see the great mountainLanyngerin bending down his headlike a thorough bred horse with a curb


12 THE LOST CHILDin his mouth I can see the long greyplains broken with the outlines ofthe solitary volcanoes Widderin andMonmot Ah General Halbert Iwill go back there next year for I amtired of England and I will leave mybones there I am getting old and Iwant peace as I had it in AustraliaAs for the story you speak of it issimply thisFour or five miles up the riverfrom Garoopna stood a solitary hutsheltered by a lofty bare knoll roundwhich the great river chafed among theboulders Across the stream was theforest sloping down in pleasant gladesfrom the mountain and behind the hutrose the plain four or five hundred feetoverhead seeming to be held aloft bythe blue stone columns which rose fromthe river side


THE LOST CHILD 13In this cottage resided a shepherdhis wife and one little boy their sonabout eight years old a strange wildlittle bush child able to speak articulately but utterly without knowledge orexperience of human creatures save ofhis father and mother unable to reada line without religion of any sortor kind as entire a little savage infact as you could find in the worstden in your city morally speaking andyet beautiful to look on as active asa roe and with regard to naturalobjects as fearless as a lionAs yet unfit to begin labour allthe long summer he would wanderabout the river bank up and downthe beautiful rock walled paradise wherehe was confined sometimes lookingeagerly across the water at the wavingforest boughs and fancying he could


14 THE LOST CHILDsee other children far up the vistasbeckoning to him to cross and playin that merry land of shifting lightsand shadowsIt grew quite into a passion withthe poor little man to get across andplay there and one day when hismother was shifting the hurdles andhe was handing her the strips of greenhide which bound them together hesaid to herMother what country is thatacross the riverThe forest childThere s plenty of quantongs overthee eh mother and raspberriesWhy mayn t I get across and playthereThe river is too deep child andthe Bunyip lives in the water underthe stones


Ai iI TIi 1 71 witryis hal cros terno l


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THE LOST CHILD 17Who are the children that playacross thereBlack children likelyNo white childrenPixies don t go near em childthey ll lure you on Lord knows whereDon t get trying to cross the rivernow or you ll be drownedBut next day the passion wasstronger on him than ever Quiteearly on the glorious cloudless midsummer day he was down by the riverside sitting on a rock with his shoesand stockings off paddling his feetin the clear tepid water and watchingthe million fish in the shallowsblack fish and grayling leaping andflashing in the sunThere is no pleasure that I have everexperienced like a child s midsummerholiday the time I mean when two


18 THE LOST CHILDor three of us used to go away up thebrook and take our dinners with usand come home at night tired dirtyhappy scratched beyond recognitionwith a great nosegay three little troutand one shoe the other having beenused for a boat till it had gone downwith all hands out of soundings Howpoor our Derby days our Greenwichdinners our evening parties where thereare plenty of nice girls are after thatDepend on it a man never experiencessuch pleasure or grief after fourteenas he does before unless in some casesin his first love making when the sensation is new to himBut meanwhile there sat our childbarelegged watching the forbiddenground beyond the river A freshbreeze was moving the trees andmaking the whole a dazzling mass of


TITE LOST CHILD 19shifting light and shadow He sat sostill that a glorious violet and red kingfisher perched quite close and dashinginto the water came forth with a fishand fled like a ray of light along thewinding of the river A colonyof little shell parrots too crowdedon a bough and twittered and ranto and fro quite busily as thoughthey said to him We don t mindyou my dear you are quite one ofusNever was the river so low Hestepped in it scarcely reached hisankle Now surely he might getacross He stripped himself andcarrying his clothes waded throughthe water never reaching his middleall across the long yellow gravellyshallow And there he stood nakedand free on the forbidden ground


20 THE LOST CHILDHe quickly dressed himself andbegan examining his new kingdomrich beyond his utmot hopes Suchquantongs such raspberries surpassingimagination and when tired of themsuch fern boughs six or eight feetlong He would penetrate lis regionand see how far it extendedWhat tales he would have for hisfather to night He would bring himhere and show him all the wondersand perhaps he would build a newhut over here and come and live init Perhaps the pretty young ladywith the feathers in her hat livedsomewhere here tooThere There Ois one of thosechildren he has seen before across theriver Ah ah it is not a child atall but a pretty grey beast with bigears A kangaroo my lad he won t


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THE LOST CHILD 23play with you but skips away slowlyand leaves you aloneThere is something like the gleamof water on that rock A snakeNow a sounding rush through thewood and a passing shadow Aneagle He brushes so close to thechild that he strikes at the bird witha stick and then watches him as heshoots up like a rocket and measuring the fields of air in ever wideningcircles hangs like a motionless speckupon the sky though measure hiswings across and you will find he isnearer fifteen feet than fourteenHere is a prize thou Awee little native bear barely a footlong a little grey beast comicalbeyond expression wi broad flappedears sits on a tree within reach Hemakes no resistance but cuddles into


24 THE LOST CHILDthe child s bosom and eats a leaf asthey go along while his mother sitsaloft and grunts indignant at theabstraction of her offspring but onthe whole takes it pretty comfortablyand goes on with her dinner of peppermint leavesWhat a short day it has beenHere is the sun getting low and themagpies and jackasses beginning totune up before roostingHe would turn and go back tothe river Alas which wayHe was lost in the bush Heturned back and went as he thoughtthe way he had come but soon arrivedat a tall precipitous cliff which bysome infernal magic seemed to havegot between him and the river Thenhe broke down and that strange madness came on him which comes even


e 7was lost in the Bish


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THE LOST CHILD 27on strong men when lost in the foresta despair a confusion of intellectwhich has cost many a man his lifeThink what it must be with a childHe was fully persuaded that thecliff was between him and home andthat he must climb it Alas everystep he took aloft carried him furtherfrom the river and the hope of safetyand when he came to the top justat dark he saw nothing but cliff aftercliff range after range all around himHe had been wandering through steepgullies all day unconsciously and hadpenetrated far into the mountainsNight was coming down still andcrystal clear and the poor little ladwas far away from help or hope goinghis last long journey alonePartly perhaps walking and partlysitting down and weeping he gotB


28 THE LOST CHILDthrough the night and when thesolemn morning came up again hewas still tottering along the leadingrange bewildered crying from time totime Mother mother still nursinghis little bear his only companion tohis bosom and holding still in his handa few poor flowers he had gatheredthe day before Up and on all dayand at evening passing out of thegreat zone of timber he came on thebald thunder smitten summit ridgewhere one ruined tree held up itsskeleton arms against the sunset andthe wind came keen and frosty Sowith failing feeble legs upward stilltowards the region of the granite andthe snow towards the eyrie of thekite and the eagle


He came on the bald thunder smitten summit ridge


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THE LOST CHILD 31Brisk as they all were at Garoopnanone were so brisk as Cecil and SamCharles Hawker wanted to come withthem but Sam asked him to go withJim and long before the others wereready our two had strapped theirblankets to their saddles and followedby Sam s dog Rover now getting alittle grey about the nose cantered offup the riverNeither spoke at first They knewwhat a solemn task they had beforethem and while acting as thougheverything depended on speed guessedwell that their search was only for alittle corpse which if they had luckthey would find stiff and cold undersome tree or crayCecil began Sam depend on itthat child has crossed the river to thisside If he had been on the plains


32 THE LOST CHILDhe would have been seen from adistance in a few hoursI quite agree said Sam Letus go down on this side till we areopposite the hut and search for marksby the river sideSo they agreed and in half anhour were opposite the hut and ridingacross to it to ask a few questionsfound the poor mother sitting on thedoor step with her apron over herhead rocking herself to and froWe have come to help youmistress said Sam How do youthink he is goneShe said with frequent bursts ofgrief that some days before he hadmentioned having seen white childrenacross the water who beckoned himto cross and play that she knowingwell that they were fairies or perhaps


Pages 33 34IllustrationWe have come tohelp you mistressMissing from Original


THE LOST CHILD 35worse had warned him solemnly notto mind them but that she had verylittle doubt that they had helped himover and carried him away to theforest and that her husband would notbelieve in his having crossed the riverWhy it is not knee deep acrossthe shallow said CecilLet us cross again said Sam hemay be drowned but I don t think itIn a quarter of an hour from startingthey found slightly up the stream oneof the child s socks which in his hurryto dress he had forgotten Here braveRover took up the trail like a bloodhound and before evening stopped atthe foot of a lofty cliffCan he have gone up heresaid Sam as they were brought upby the rockMost likely said Cecil Lost


36 THE LOST CHILDchildren always climb from height toheight I have heard it often remarkedby old bush hands Why they do soGod who leads them only knowsbut the fact is beyond denial AskRover what he thinksThe brave old dog was half way uplooking back for them It took themnearly till dark to get their horses upand as there was no moon and theway was getting perilous they determined to camp and start again in themorningThey spread their blankets and laydown side by side Sam had thoughtfrom Cecil s proposing to come withhim in preference to the others thathe would speak of a subject nearlyconcerning them both but Cecil wentoff to sleep and made no sign andSam ere he dozed said to himself


THE LUST CHILD 37If he don t speak this journey Iwill It is unbearable that we shouldnot come to some understandingPoor CecilAt early dawn they caught up theirhorses which had been hobbled withthe stirrup leathers and started afreshBoth were more silent than ever andthe dog with his nose to the groundled them slowly along the rocky ribof the mountain ever going higherand higherIt is inconceivable said Samthat the poor child can have comeup here There is Tuckerimbid closeto our right five thousand feet abovethe river Don t you think we mustbe mistakenThe dog disagrees with yousaid Cecil He has something beforehim not very far off Watch him


38 THE LOST CHILDThe trees had become dwarfed andscattered they were getting out ofthe region of trees the real forestzone was now below them and theysaw they were emerging towards abald elevated down and that a fewhundred yards before them was adead tree on the highest branch ofwhich sat an eagleThe dog has stopped said Cecilthe end is nearSee said Sam there is a handkerchief under the treeThat is the boy himself saidCecilThey were up to him and off ina moment There he lay dead andstiff one hand still grasping the flowershe had gathered on his last happy playday and the other laid as a pillowbetween the soft cold cheek and the


Ye i e y dead and siff


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THE LOST CHILD 41rough cold stone His midsummerholiday was over his long journeywas ended He had found out atlast what lay beyond the shining riverhe had watched so longThat is the whole story GeneralHalbert and who should know it betterthan I Geoffry HamlynTHE ENDC


LONDONR CLAY SONS AND TAYLOR PRINTERSBREAD STREET HILL


ILLUSTRATED WORKS BY L FROLICHLITTLE LUCY S WONDERFUL GLOBEPictured in Twenty Plates and NarratedBY CHARLOTTE M YONGEAuthor of The Heir of RedelyffeCrown 4to cloth giltTHE LOST CHILDBY HENRY KINGSLEYWith Eight Illustrations Crown 4to cloth giltTHE PLEASANT TALE OF PUSS AND ROBIN ANDTHEIR FRIENDS KITTY AND BOBTold in Twelve Pictures with RhymesBY TOM HOODCrown 4to cloth giltA BOOK OF GOLDEN DEEDSOF ALL TIMES AND ALL COUNTRIESGathered and Narrated anewBY CHARLOTTE M YONGEAuthor of The Heir of RedclyfeWith Twenty Illustrations Crown 8vo cloth giltWHEN I WAS A LITTLE GIRLSTORIES FOR CHIILDRENBY THE AUTHOR OF ST OLAVESWith Eight Illustrations Second Edition Extra Fcap 8vo 4s 6dNINE YEARS OLDBY THE AUTHOR OF ST OLAVESUniform with the aboveWith Eight IllustrationsMACMILLAN AND CO LONDON


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The Baldwin Library fRm93 cru



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18 THE LOST CHILD. or three of us used to go away up the brook, and take our dinners with us, and come home at' night tired, dirty, happy, scratched beyond recognition, with a great nosegay, three little trout and one shoe, the other having been used for a boat till it had gone down with all hands out of soundings. How poor our Derby days, our Greenwich dinners, our evening parties, where there are plenty of nice girls, are, after that! Depend on it, a man never experiences such pleasure or grief after fourteen as he does before: unless in some cases in his first love-making, when the sensation is new to him. But, meanwhile, there sat our child, barelegged, watching the forbidden ground beyond the river. A fresh breeze was moving the trees, and "making the whole a dazzling mass of



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TITE LOST CHILD. 19 shifting light and shadow. He sat so still that a glorious violet and red kingfisher perched quite close, and, dashing into the water, came forth with a fish, and fled like a ray of light along the winding of the river. A colony of little shell parrots, too, crowded on a bough, and twittered and ran to and fro quite busily, as though they said to him, We don't mind you, my dear; you are quite one of us. Never was the river so low. He stepped in; it scarcely reached his ankle. Now surely he might get across. He stripped himself, and, carrying his clothes, waded through, the water never reaching his middle, all across the long, yellow gravelly shallow. And there he stood, naked and free, on the forbidden ground.





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" A angar oo'. A S 6e' AIn Ea le'



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LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS. PAiGE SOMETIMES LOOKING EAGERLY ACROSS THE WATER AT THE WAVING FOREST BOUGHS. ........Front. AND THERE HE STOOD, NAKED AND FREE, ON THE FORBIDDEN GROUND ..............gne e "MOTHER, WHAT COUNTRY IS THAT ACROSS THE RIVER?" 15 A KANGAROO! A SNAKE! AN EAGLE! ........2I HE WAS LOST IN THE BUSH ........... ..25 HE CAME ON THE BALD, THUNDER-SMITTEN SUMMIT RIDGE 29 WE HAVE COME TO HELP YOU, MISTRESS ...... 33 THERE HE LAY, DEAD AND STIFF ..... ......39



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THE LOST CHILD. I;V HENRY KINGSLEY. And there he f tood, naked ai d free, on the forbidden groetnd.' ILLUiSTATE 7D BLY L. ,I'AOLICIL SECOND EDITION. • flnban ; MACMILLAN AND CO. 1872.



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THE LOST CHILD. REMEMBER? Yes, I remember well that time when the disagreement arose between Sam Buckley and Cecil, and how it was mended. You are wrong about one thing, General; no words ever passed between those two young men: death was between them before they had time to speak. I will tell you the real story, old as I am, as well as either of them could tell it for themselves; and as I tell it I hear the familiar roar of the old snowy river in my ears, and if I shut my eyes I can see the great mountain, Lanyngerin, bending down his head like a thorough-bred horse with a curb



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z Be r --e .\ "Looking eagerly across the -water." FRONT. m"~~`>P



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Pages 33 -34, Illustration "We have come to help you, mistress," Missing from Original





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PREFACE. IT is only natural that an author should say a few words about a republication of this kind. The story in its separate form has the advantage of being illustrated by an eminent artist, whose special qualifications are widely known and acknowledged; and it seemed to all concerned best that it should be left entirely untouched. The first two paragraphs and the last short one are simply added: no other liberty has been taken with it. To avoid the trouble of those great plagues of literature, foot-notes, the author asks the reader to submit to a few very trifling explanations: "Quantongs" are a bush fruit, of about A2



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THE LOST CHILD. 35 worse, had warned him solemnly not to mind them; but that she had very little doubt that they had helped him over and carried him away to the forest; and that her husband would not believe in his having crossed the river." "Why, it is not knee-deep across the shallow," said Cecil. Let us cross again," said Sam: "he may be drowned, but I don't think it." In a quarter of an hour from starting they found, slightly up the stream, one of the child's socks, which in his hurry to dress he had forgotten. Here brave Rover took up the trail like a bloodhound, and before evening stopped at the foot of a lofty cliff. "Can he have gone up here?" said Sam, as they were brought up by the rock. "Most likely," said Cecil. Lost



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ILLUSTRATED WORKS BY L. FROLICH. LITTLE LUCY'S WONDERFUL GLOBE. Pictured in Twenty Plates and Narrated BY CHARLOTTE M. YONGE, Author of The Heir of Redelyffe." Crown 4to. cloth gilt. THE LOST CHILD. BY HENRY KINGSLEY. With Eight Illustrations. Crown 4to. cloth gilt. THE PLEASANT TALE OF PUSS AND ROBIN, AND THEIR FRIENDS, KITTY AND BOB. Told in Twelve Pictures, with Rhymes BY TOM HOOD. Crown 4to. cloth gilt. A BOOK OF GOLDEN DEEDS OF ALL TIMES AND ALL COUNTRIES. Gathered and Narrated anew BY CHARLOTTE M. YONGE, Author of" The Heir of Redclyfe." With Twenty Illustrations. Crown 8vo. cloth gilt. WHEN I WAS A LITTLE GIRL. STORIES FOR CHIILDREN. BY THE AUTHOR OF "ST. OLAVES." With Eight Illustrations. Second Edition. Extra Fcap. 8vo. 4s. 6d. NINE YEARS OLD. BY THE AUTHOR OF "ST. OLAVES." Uniform with the above. With Eight Illustrations. MACMILLAN AND CO., LONDON.







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THE LOST CHILD. 23 play with you, but skips away slowly, and leaves you alone. There is something like the gleam of water on that rock. A snake! Now a sounding rush through the wood, and a passing shadow. An eagle! He brushes so close to the child, that he strikes at the bird with a stick, and then watches him as he shoots up like a rocket, and, measuring the fields of air in ever-widening circles, hangs like a motionless speck upon the sky; though, measure his wings across, and you will find he is nearer fifteen feet than fourteen. Here is a prize, thou; A wee little native bear, barely a foot long,-a little grey -beast, comical beyond expression, wi* broad flapped ears,-sits on a tree within reach. He makes no resistance, but cuddles into



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THE LOST CHILD. 41 rough cold stone. His midsummer holiday was over, his long journey was ended. He had found out at last what lay beyond the shining river he had watched so long. That is the whole story, General Halbert; and who should know it better than I, Geoffry Hamlyn ? THE END. C





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20 THE LOST CHILD. He quickly dressed himself, and began examining his new kingdom, rich beyond his utmot .hopes. Such quantongs, such raspberries, surpassing imagination; and when tired of them, such fern boughs, six or eight feet long! He would penetrate lis region, and see how far it extended What tales he would have for his father to-night! He would bring him here, and show him all the wonders, and perhaps he would build a new hut over here, and come and live in it? Perhaps the pretty young lady, with the feathers in her hat, lived somewhere here, too ? There! There Ois. one of those children he has seen before across the river. Ah! ah! it is not a child at all, but a pretty grey beast, with big ears. A kangaroo, my lad; he won't



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THE LOST CHILD. 27 on strong men when lost in the forest; a despair, a confusion of intellect, which has cost many a man his life. Think what it must be with a child He was fully persuaded that the cliff was between him and home, and that he must climb it. Alas! every step he took aloft carried him further from the river and the hope of safety; and when he came to the top, just at dark, he saw nothing but cliff after cliff, range after range, all around him. He had been wandering through steep gullies all day unconsciously, and had penetrated far into the mountains. Night was coming down, still and crystal clear, and the poor little lad was far away from help or hope, going his last long journey alone. Partly perhaps walking, and partly sitting down and weeping, he got B



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38 THE LOST CHILD. The trees had become dwarfed and scattered; they were getting out of the region of trees; the real forest zone was now below them, and they saw they were emerging towards a bald elevated down, and that a few hundred yards before them was a dead tree, on the highest branch of which sat an eagle. "The dog has stopped," said Cecil; "the end is near." See," said Sam, "there is a handkerchief under the tree." "That is the boy himself," said Cecil. They were up to him and off in a moment. There he lay, dead and stiff, one hand still grasping the flowers he had gathered on his last happy playday, and the other laid as a pillow, between the soft cold cheek and the



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THE LUST CHILD. 37 "If he don't speak this journey, I will. It is unbearable that we should not come to some understanding. Poor Cecil !" At early dawn they caught up their horses, which had been hobbled with the stirrup leathers, and started afresh. Both were more silent than ever, and the dog, with his nose to the ground, led them slowly along the rocky rib of the mountain, ever going higher and higher. "It is inconceivable," said Sam, "that the poor child can have come up here. There is Tuckerimbid close to our right, five thousand feet above the river. Don't you think we must be mistaken ?" The dog disagrees with you," said Cecil. "He has something before him not very far off. Watch him."



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THE LOST CHILD. 17 "Who are the children that play across there ?" Black children, likely." No white children?" Pixies; don't go near 'em, child; they'll lure you on, Lord knows where. Don't get trying to cross the river. now, or you'll be drowned." But next day the passion was stronger on him than ever. Quite early on the glorious cloudless midsummer day he was down by the riverside, sitting on a rock, with his shoes and stockings off, paddling his feet in the clear tepid water, and watching the million fish in the shallowsblack fish and grayling-leaping and flashing' in the sun. There is no pleasure that I have ever experienced like a child's midsummer holiday,-the time, I mean, when two



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Ye/' i'e /y, dead and siff.



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He came on the bald, thunder-smitten summit ridge.



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^/ / I /e THE LOST CHILD.



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28 THE LOST CHILD. through the night; and when the solemn morning came up, again he was still tottering along the leading range, bewildered; crying, from time to time, "Mother, mother!" still nursing his little bear, his only companion, to his bosom, and holding still in his hand a few poor flowers he had gathered the day before. Up and on all day, and at evening, passing out of the great zone of timber, he came on the bald, thunder-smitten summit ridge, where one ruined tree held up its skeleton arms against the sunset, and the wind came keen and frosty. So, with failing, feeble legs, upward still, towards the region of the granite and the snow; towards the eyrie of the kite and the eagle. * *



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12 THE LOST CHILD. in his mouth; I can see the long grey plains, broken with the outlines of the solitary volcanoes Widderin and Monmot. Ah, General Halbert! I will go back there next year, for I am tired of England, and I will leave my bones there; I am getting old, and I want peace, as I had it in Australia. As for the story you speak of, it is simply this:Four or five miles up the river from Garoopna stood a solitary hut, sheltered by a lofty bare knoll, round which the great river chafed among the boulders. Across the stream was the forest sloping down in pleasant glades from the mountain; and behind the hut rose the plain four or five hundred feet overhead, seeming to be held aloft by the blue-stone columns which rose from the river-side.



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36 THE LOST CHILD. children always climb from height to height. I have heard it often remarked by old bush hands. Why they do so, God, who leads them, only knows; but the fact is beyond denial. Ask Rover what he thinks ? The brave old dog was half-way up, looking back for them. It took them nearly till dark to get their horses up; and, as there was no moon, and the way was getting perilous, they determined to camp, and start again in the morning. They spread their blankets and lay down side by side. Sam had thought, from Cecil's proposing to come with him in preference to the others, that he would speak of a subject nearly concerning them both.; but Cecil went off to sleep and made no sign; and Sam, ere he dozed,' said to himself,



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THE LOST CHILD. 13 In this cottage resided a shepherd, his wife, and one little boy, their son, about eight years old,-a strange, wild little bush child, able to speak articulately, but utterly without knowledge or experience of human creatures, save of his father and mother; unable to read a line; without religion of any sort or kind; as entire a little savage, in fact, as you could find in the worst den in your city, morally speaking, and yet beautiful to look on; as active as a roe, and, with regard to natural objects, as fearless as a lion. As yet unfit to begin labour; all the long summer he would wander about the river bank, up and down the beautiful rock-walled paradise where he was confined, sometimes looking eagerly across the water at the waving forest boughs, and fancying he could



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32 THE LOST CHILD. he would have been seen from a distance in a few hours." "I quite agree," said Sam. Let us go down on this side till we are opposite the hut, and search for marks by the river-side." So they agreed; and in half an hour were opposite the hut, and, riding across to it to ask a few questions, found the poor mother sitting on the door-step, with her apron over her head, rocking herself to and fro. We have come to help you, mistress," said Sam. "How do you think he is gone?" She said, with frequent bursts of grief, that "some days before he had mentioned having seen white children across the water, who beckoned him to cross and play; that she, knowing well that they were fairies, or perhaps



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LONDON R. CLAY, SONS, AND TAYLOR, PRINTERS, BREAD STREET HILL.







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8 PREFA CE. the same quality as green gooseberries, but, like the last-named fruit, very much sought after by the native youth. The Bunyip is the native river devil, or kelpie, evidently the crocodile of the Northern Australian rivers, whose recognition by the Southern natives in their legends shows, if nothing else did, that the centre of dispersion in Australia was from the North, as Doctor Laing told us years ago. With regard to the habit which lost children have of aimless climbing, the author knew a child who, being lost by his father while out shooting on one of the flats bordering on the Eastern Pyrenees in Port Phillip on Sunday afternoon, was found the next Wednesday dead, at an elevation above the Avoca township of between two and three thousand feet.



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14 THE LOST CHILD. see other children far up the vistas beckoning to him to cross and play in that merry land of shifting lights and shadows. It grew quite into a passion with the poor little man to get across and play there; and one day when his mother was shifting the hurdles, and he was handing her the strips of green hide which bound them together, he said to her," Mother, what country is that across the river ?" The forest, child." There's plenty of quantongs over thee, 'eh, mother, and raspberries? Why mayn't I get across and play there ?" The river is too deep, child, and the Bunyip lives in the water under the stones."



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e 7was lost in the Bish.



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24 THE LOST CHILD. the child's bosom, and eats a leaf as they go along; while his mother sits aloft, and grunts indignant at the abstraction of her offspring, but, on the whole, takes it pretty comfortably, and goes on with her dinner of peppermint leaves. What a short day it has been! Here is the sun getting low, and the magpies and jackasses beginning to tune up before roosting. He would turn and go back to the river. Alas! which way? He was lost in the bush. He turned back and went, as he thought, the way he had come, but soon arrived at a tall, precipitous cliff, which, by some infernal magic, seemed to have got between him and the river. Then he broke down, and that strange madness came on him which comes even



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THE LOST CHILD. 31 Brisk as they all were at Garoopna, none were so brisk as Cecil and Sam. Charles Hawker wanted to come with them, but Sam asked him to go with Jim; and, long before the others were ready, our two had strapped their blankets to their saddles, and followed by Sam's dog Rover, now getting a little grey about the nose, cantered off up the river. Neither spoke at first. They knew what a solemn task they had before them; and, while acting as though everything depended on speed, guessed well that their search was only for a little corpse, which, if they had luck, they would find stiff and cold under some tree or cray. Cecil began: "Sam, depend on it that child has crossed the river to this side. If he had been on the plains,