The Baldwin Library
SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
MORRISON AND GIBB, EDINBURGH,
PRINTERS TO HER MAJESTY'S STATIONERY OFFICE.
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A uthor of Aunt Ann's Stories.'
WILLIAM P. NIMMO & CO.
I. WILLY AND LILY 7
II. THE SHILLING-TREE II
III. THE FRIENDLY DONKEY 13
IV. GRANDMAMMA'S GOODIES 17
V. BRAVE AND TRUE 19
VI. GOOD DOG 22
VII. THE TREES 26
VIII. THE CANARY 29
IX. THE TWO ANGELS 32
X. 'NO ONE WILL SEE US' 35
XI. A SPOILT CHILD 37
XII. THE FOOLISH FLY 40
XIII. THE HALF-EMPTY BOTTLE 43
XIV. PRYING AND PEEPING 45
XV. THE HEN 47
XVI. THE YOUNG EMPEROR 52
XVII. CATCHING THE THIEF . 56
XVIII. THE THREE BILLYGOATS 59
XIX. PLAYING AT SOLDIERS 62
XX. THE LOST PENNY 65
XXI. A STORY OF A SAVAGE 69
XXII. THE FARMER AND THE BIRD 72
XXIII. THE NAUGHTY PRINCE 76
XXIV. THE KNIGHT AND THE GREYHOUND 79
XXV. NAUGHTY CHILDREN 82
XXVI. THE JAR OF HONEY 86
XXVII. THE MIRROR 88
XXVIII. THE SENSIBLE DOG 91
XXIX. THE ECHO 95
XXX. THE RIGHTFUL HEIR 97
XXXI. UNTIDY ANDREW IOI1
XXXII. PEARLS AND SNAILS 104
XXXIII. TINY AND THE LOCKET .IC8
XXXIV. THE SEASONS 113
XXXV. THE BOY AND THE BUTTERFLY .16
XXXVI. THE ARAB'S HORSE I8
XXXVII. THE DISCONTENTED VIOLET 121
XXXVIII. THE APPLES. 124
XXXIX. DOING IT TO-MORROW .120
Sister Yane's Little Stories.
WILLY AND LILY.
ILLY and Lily were brother and sister, and
they were very like each other in one thing,
-that they were both too fond of having
their own way. When two people wish to have
their own way, and it is not the same way, they are
sure to disagree; so these two children very often
quarrelled, which was a pity.
One day their father gave them a little piece of
the garden to keep for themselves, and plant with
whatever they pleased.
Both Willy and Lily were delighted at this; but as
soon as their father left them alone, they began to
quarrel about what they should plant in their garden.
8 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
Willy, who was rather a greedy little fellow, would
hear of nothing but gooseberries and currants. Lily,
however, had set her heart upon roses and violets.
So the whole morning they quarrelled about whether
the garden should be planted with fruit or flowers,
and it seemed likely to give very little pleasure to
either of them;
At length Lily went in-doors to tell her favourite
doll what a selfish brother she had; and while she
was away, Willy went for the gardener and asked
him to plant some gooseberry and currant bushes in
their piece of ground, which he did. But when Lily
came and found this, she flew into a passion, and
pulled out all the bushes and threw them about the
garden. This made Willy very angry in his turn,
and there is no saying what his anger might have
made him do, if he had not known that he would
be very severely punished by his father if he were
so rude as to strike his sister.
At dinner that day Willy ate too many gooseberries
and currants, so in the afternoon he had a bad head-
ache, and had to take medicine. This was a pity,
for their mamma had promised to take him and his
sister out to tea with her, and he was much disap.
pointed at having to stay at home.
WILLY AND LILY. 9
'It can't be helped,' said mamma. 'Lily must
come with me to-day, and Willy must wait till
Lily was very glad to find that she was not to be
left behind, and skipped up-stairs to get ready. But
before she was dressed, she began to think that Willy
would feel very dull, all alone by himself, and soon
she ran down-stairs again to ask her mamma if she
might not stay at home with him. Mamma said she
was a good little girl for thinking of it; and Lily put
away her best clothes, and went to spend the after-
noon in the room where her brother was lying in bed.
There she did her best to comfort him by bathing
his forehead with eau de Cologne, and making some
lemonade for him, and reading stories to him,-in fact,
doing all that she would have liked a kind brother
to do for her, if she were unwell. After a time Willy
began to feel better, and then they talked again
about the garden over which they had quarrelled so
much in the forenoon. But now their dispute was
which should give in to the wishes of the other:
Willy was sorry that he had behaved so selfishly,
and he would have it that there must be nothing but
flowers in the garden; while Lily declared that she
would much rather have fruit, as he liked it best.
lo SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
When their mamma came home, she was much
pleased to find them in the middle of such a
friendly quarrel, and, giving them each a kiss, she
proposed to settle it in this way,-that half the garden
should be planted with flowers, as Lily had wished,
and the other half with fruit, to please Willy. The
children were delighted to agree to this, and perhaps
wondered that they had not thought of it before.
At all events, they saw that kindness and not ill-
temper was the best way of having their own way;
and I hope all boys and girls who read this story
will believe that having your own way is not half
such a happy thing as trying to help and please othei
people. And let us all hope that after this Willy
and Lily loved each other dearly, and never quarrelled
BOY called Edward was once too fond of
teasing his little sister Emily. She was
only old enough to speak plainly, but she
was always asking questions about whatever she saw.
Then Edward would make fun of her, and try to
puzzle her, which was not kind of him.
On his birthday Edward had five shillings sent
him from his grandmother, to buy a present with;
and while he was writing a letter to thank her, Emily
came into the room, and, seeing the five bright
shillings on the table, asked her brother where he
'Oh! off the shilling-tree,' answered Edward. Then,
as the little girl opened her eyes in wonder, he went
on, 'If you sow shillings in the earth like peas, each
12 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
of them will become a great bush, which will be
quite covered with pieces of money.'
Then he went on writing his letter, and was so
busy with it that he did not notice that his sister had
taken up the shillings, and run off with them into the
garden. Just as he had finished his letter, and was
addressing the envelope, Emily came back into the
room, looking very well pleased with herself.
'Dear Edward,' she cried, 'you will have plenty
of money soon, for I have just sowed your shillings
in the ground.'
But instead of pleasing Edward, this news made
him very angry. He caught Emily's hand, and ran
out into the garden with her, insisting that she should
show him where she had buried his money. Emily
cried when she found that Edward did not wish to
have his shillings planted in the ground, and tried
her best to find the place where she had put them.
But either she had forgotten it, or some one had
seen her and stolen the money, for the shillings
could not be found; and when Edward complained
to his father, he was told that it was all his own
fault, for putting silly notions into his little sister's
head. He never talked to her again about a
THE FRIENDLY DONKEY.
HERE was once a donkey which used to
feed on a common, through which was
a road where many persons passed back-
wards and forwards every day. The donkey was
of a friendly disposition; and when he saw any one
coming along the road, he would run up and raise
his head, and call out 'Heehaw! keehaw/' which was
his way of saying Good morning !'
Well, a kind, good-natured boy was coming along
the road one morning, having been sent to the town
to buy something for his mother, and when the
donkey trotted up and said 'Heehaw! heehaw I' he
patted it on the head, and put his arm round its
neck, and stroked its sides, and tickled its long ears,
T4 SISTERJANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
-all which is the way to show a donkey that you
wish to be friends with him. Then he went on his
Soon another boy passed by, going the other way.
He was a cruel, ill-natured fellow. The donkey did
not know this, and hoped to be as well treated by
him, and ran up, saying 'Heehaw heehaw !' But the
naughty boy hit it over the head with a stick, and
threw stones and pieces of earth after it as it ran
away. Having chased it and pelted it to his heart's
content, he went on, and thought himself a very fine
fellow for having teased and hurt a poor donkey
who never did him any harm; but I think he would
have been all the better of finding out how a stick
felt upon his own hide, and I hope you think so also.
While these two boys were about their errands,
a heavy rain fell all day, and a stream over which
they had to cross on their way home was swollen,
and filled to twice its usual depth by the water
running down from the hills.
The good-natured boy arrived on the bank first,
and he was sadly put out to see that the stepping-
stones were covered, and that he could not cross
without walking up to his waist in water. As it was
now beginning to freeze, this did not seem pleasant;
TIIE FRIENDLY DONKEY. 15
but he was making up his mind to try it, for he knew
that his mother expected him at home, when he
heard behind him Heehaw / heehaw!' and, turning
round, saw the donkey coming up to his help.
Will you carry me across, Jacky?' he asked; and
the donkey answered quite plainly, 'Heehaw by
which he meant 'yes,' and stood beside him to let
The boy jumped on his back and held on tight.
The donkey entered the water, and carefully carried
his rider across to the opposite bank. So the boy
was not in the least wet, and ran home to his mother,
after thanking the donkey, and promising to bring
him something nice next morning.
As the donkey still stood on the bank of the
stream, and was looking about for a thistle or some-
thing to refresh himself with, before returning to
his own side, the cruel boy arrived, and wished to
cross over to the town. He, too, thought he would
make use of the donkey to carry him over, and
called out, 'Come here, you beast !'
The donkey remembered him very well, and the
way he had behaved in the morning; but he drew
near, and allowed the boy to mount on his back.
All the while, though, he had a plan in his shaggy
16 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
head, for this donkey was not such an ass as you
'Gee-up! Get on! Be quick!' cried the boy,
kicking the donkey's sides with the heels of his
The donkey moved into the water, and carried
him safely half way across. But when they had got
to-the deepest part of the stream, he suddenly
kicked up his hind legs, and flung his rider head
over heels into the icy water.
The boy picked himself up and scrambled out
as best he could. When, with soaked clothes and
shivering limbs, he reached the bank, he saw the
donkey scampering off on the other side, and heard
it crying out Heehaw heehaw /' which seemed to
him to mean, 'Don't you wish you may catch me?'
but I should say it meant, 'Served him right!'
NE day little George and his sister Lucy
went into their grandmamma's bedroom,
and saw on her table a little box, just like
one which she had once given them, full of sweets.
'Oh!' cried George, 'here are grandmamma's
goodies. Shall we look inside?'
I you like,' said Lucy.
George opened the box, and showed his sister
some little balls, white and round.
'What nice sweeties they must be!' he said. 'Shall
we taste them ?'
'No, George. It would not be right. Grand-
mamma will be angry.'
Only one,' said George, and took one.
But no sooner had he put one in his mouth than
18 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
he began to make horrible faces, and spat it out as
quickly as he could; and just then grandmamma
came in, and caught him looking very much dis-
gusted, and crying out,
'Oh, how nasty grandmamma's goodies are!'
Now do you know what grandmamma's goodies
were ?-they were pills i
BRAVE AND TRUE.
K ARRY SMITH was at a school near London,
where the master was very strict, and used
to punish very severely those boys who dis-
obeyed him. But that did not much matter to Harry,
for he was one of the best boys in the school, and
seldom got into trouble.
One day, passing through the playground, he
happened to come upon three other boys just as they
were throwing stones and had broken one or two of
the school windows. When they saw that Harry
had seen what they were about, they were afraid,
for they meant no one to know who had done this
piece of mischief. So they asked him, tlo.l.pr.:on:-;
that he would not tell the master of them; and H.uri
20 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
did promise, for schoolboys don't like to tell tales of
When the master came into school and found what
had been done, he was very angry, and asked the
boys one by one if they knew how the windows had
been broken. All denied it, till he came to Harry,
who was puzzled what to say, for he did know how
it had been done, but had promised not to tell.
He said so to the master, but he was only the more
angry, and said that if Harry did not tell him the
whole truth, he would punish him for what had been
'I can't tell you, sir. I promised,' Harry said
'You must tell me,' answered the master. 'I will
give you a quarter of an hour to think over it, and
then you shall have a sound I. 1'd.- if I can't know
who broke these windows.'
Now was it not cowardly of the boys who really
did the mischief, to sit by and let Harry be punished
for their fault? I daresay they would have liked
to tell the truth, but they had not the courage to
speak out. So the quarter of an hour passed by, and
Harry was called up to the master, who took out his
cane, and asked him once more to confess.
BRA VE AND TRUE. 2
'I proinised,' was all that Harry could say, and he
was making up his mind to bear the cane as bravely
as he could. But, just in time, the master's wife
came into the schoolroom to say that one of the
servants had seen the boys breaking the windows,
and told their names. These boys were called up,
and they looked so frightened and ashamed of
themselves, that every one saw at once that they
were the wrong-doers,-indeed, they at once con-
fessed the whole story.
The master was very glad indeed that this was
found out in time to prevent him from punishing
Harry unfairly, and he told him that no one would
ever think the worse of him for keeping his promise
at all risks. But it was in a very different way that
he spoke to the three boys who had got Harry into
this scrape; and when he had shown them how
meanly and cowardly they had behaved, he gave
them each the good caning which they had so well
deserved, and no one pitied them.
/^*..s **'Ps- S."/ -/ *'":'
NE day a dog called Carlo went out with
his little mistress, Milly Mansell. It was a
beautiful day, and this pair of friends en-
joyed themselves thoroughly. They ran, they jumped,
they played at hide-and-seek with each other; Milly
laughed, and Carlo barked, and in fact they were as
happy as child and dog can be.
Soon they came to a pond on which was a little
boat belonging to Milly's brothers. She jumped into
it, and stood at the end, making it swing from side
to side beneath her feet. But Carlo stayed on the
bank, and wagged his tail wisely, as if to say that he
didn't like the look of it.
And suddenly a terrible accident happened. Milly's
GOOD DOG. 23
foot slipped, she fell, the boat upset, and the little
girl went over into the water.
Then Carlo did not stay on the bank. With a
bound he plunged into the pond and swam towards
his little mistress. He reached her; he caught her
dress in his mouth; he struck out bravely for the
shore, pushing her before him, and at length succeeded
in landing her on the grass.
But was it not too late? Milly's eyes were closed;
her face was white; she did not move or speak.
Carlo walked round her, licked her face, barked,
did everything he could to rouse her, but it was of
no use. He was frightened; he understood that he
must fetch some one to help. So he galloped off as
fast as he could to the house.
There, he first hurried into the kitchen, and ran
up to all the servants, and jumped upon them, and
looked into their faces. But no one understood him.
The cook thought he wanted something to eat, and
gave him some scraps in a bowl. But he knocked
over the bowl, and sprung up-stairs into the parlour,
where luckily Mrs. Mansell was sitting.
The lady saw at once that the dog was excited
about something. What is the matter, Carlo ?' she
asked ; and he answered by short sharp barks, and
24 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
caught her dress in his mouth, and tried to draw
her from her chair. She got up, alarmed ; and just
then her husband came out of his study to see what
all this barking was about.
'Come, come !' the lady cried. 'Something must
have happened. Where is Milly?'
At this name the dog barked louder and quicker,
and turned to the door. Mr. and Mrs. Mansell
followed hastily, without waiting to put on cap or
bonnet. Carlo led the way, and all three ran to the
edge of the pond where Milly lay dripping and sense-
less. But as Carlo reached her, and licked her cheek,
she opened her eyes, and the dog gave a great howl
Mr. Mansell saw at once what had happened.
He caught up his little girl in his arms and ran with
her into the house. Then there was a confusion.
Every one was running about and fetching remedies,
or hurrying off for the doctor, and for a time no one
noticed Carlo, who kept trotting about from place
to place, and seemed as anxious as any one to know
how things were going.
At length Mr. Mansell came out and said, 'Oh,
my good dog, how shall I ever thank you for saving
our dear child's life!'
GOOD DOG. 25
Carlo jumped up and scratched at the door of his
little mistress's room. He wished to see her; that
was all the thanks he wanted.
They let him in, and there was Milly lying in her
little bed, with her arms round her mother's neck,
and her blue eyes full of happy tears. 'Bow-wow !'
said Carlo, and jumped up on the bed, and licked
her hands till she fell quietly asleep.
Carlo had always been a favourite before this, but
you may be sure that now the brave dog was more
loved than ever by all the house, and nothing was
thought too good for him.
HE trees in a certain wood once began to
talk to each other, and to dispute about
which of them was the most useful and
friendly to man.
Look at me !' said the willow. See how graceful
I am, and how elegantly I dip my branches in the
stream. You all look coarse and vulgar beside me !'
'What are you good for, I should like to know,
except to make baskets?' growled the oak. 'I am
much stronger and larger than you; I have more
branches, and they are covered with leaves, and with
'Yes, but your acorns are only good for pigs,' said
the peach-tree. 'Men don't care for them. As for
me, I bear pretty, red-cheeked peaches, which are
TIHE TREES. 27
sold for a great deal of money, and put on the table
You are not very useful, then,' said the apple-tree.
'Very few people can afford to buy your fruit; besides,
they only last for a few weeks, and after that spoil,
and are fit for nothing. But I am quite a different
sort of tree. Every year I bear a great crop of apples,
which are eaten both by rich and poor, and can also
be kept and used for tarts, or made into cider. What
tree is of more use to man than myself?'
'So you say!' cried the plane, the elm, and the
beech, speaking all at once. 'But we have to say
that our wood is cut up into logs, and burned in
winter as fuel, or is used for making houses, tables,
chairs, not to say ships and rocking-horses, and other
things which it would take a whole day to name.'
Coffins !' croaked an old thorn-tree in the hedge.
'I don't pretend to be useful for that, or for much
else; but only consider how many more beauties I
have than the rest of you Don't laugh Do I not
put out a lovely white blossom early in spring; and
in autumn am I not covered with the brightest red
'But I have red berries too,' said the holly; 'and
besides, I am green all the year round, which is more
28 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
than most of you can say. Then at Christmas, people
use me to decorate their rooms and churches; so
they must think more of me than of any other tree.'
No,' said the fir. I am just as green as you are
in winter, and at Christmas I make myself more useful.
For then people take me and deck me with lamps,
fruit, sweets, toys, and all sorts of presents for good
boys and girls. So surely they must love me more
than all other trees.'
Was the fir right ?
NE day when Alice was out walking with her
mother, they passed a shop full of pretty
canaries in cages.
'Oh, mamma!' cried Alice, 'do buy me one of
these lovely birds. May I have one, mamma?'
'Well, my dear, do you think you have deserved a
present?' said her mother. 'You know you have
very often disobeyed me lately; and I don't think a
little girl who has to be found so much fault with,
ought to have a bird.'
'Oh, but I will be good !' said Alice eagerly; and
her mother answered,
'Then try to remember to do what you are told;
and if you do not disobey me for a week, I will buy
one of these birds for you.'
3": SASTZ .A' _.-_'-E.'.S LZITT7-- .S7O,'TS.
Alice clapped her hands, and thought to herself
that she would take great care to be good now.
About a week afterwards, when she had finished
her lessons, Alice's mother said to her,
'I am going out for a little. Take care that you
do no mischief, and especially be sure not to touch a
large box which you will see on my table. If you do
as I tell you, you shall see what you shall see when I
Mamma is gone to buy the bird !' thought Alice,
and skipped for glee. But soon she must take a look
at the box which she had been forbidden to touch.
What could it be? It was very light and large, and
there were little holes in the cover. Alice peeped
through these holes, but they were too small to let
her see anything. Oh dear I what could be inside
of this wonderful box which she was not to touch ?
Then the next thing was, that Alice was touching it,
and asking herself whether she might not take off
the lid and have just one peep. Mamma will never
know,' she said; and the end of it was, that she took
off the lid, intending to put it on again in a moment.
But in that moment a pretty little yellow canary flew
out, and fluttered about the room.
S 'Oh, what have I done !' cried Alice, and began to
THE CANARY. 31
chase the bird, to try to put it back in the box and
shut the lid before her mother came back. She ran
up and down, from one side to the other, but could
not catch the canary; and when it had made fun of
her in this way for a minute or two, it flew out of the
window, and was off to the wood. Just then the
door opened, Alice's mother entered, and found her
little girl with red cheeks, and out of breath with
running. The open box told the rest of the story.
'Alice, Alice! why will you not obey me?' she
said. I intended to give you this pretty canary, but
first I thought I would try to see if you deserved it.
Now it has escaped, and you have only yourself to
blame. I do hope you will take a lesson from this,
and learn to do as you are told.'
'Oh, mamma, I will!' said Alice, crying. And let
us hope she did.
-f. <. y ?- ..*
THE TWO ANGELS.
T was evening, and two brother angels, the
Angel of Death and the Angel of Sleep,
came down from heaven and wandered
over the earth. They lay down together on a hill
near the houses of men. All was silent around; the
sounds of work had ceased in the village, and the
church clock was striking the hour of rest. Still and
silent the two angels lay, with their arms round each
other's necks, and the shades of night were beginning
to fall. Then the Angel of Sleep rose from the moss
on which he lay, and with unheard footsteps and
unseen hands went forth to sow the seeds of slumber,
which the gentle evening breeze wafted into the
dwellings of the husbandmen. Then sweet sleep
THE TWO ANGELS. 33
lulled to rest all the sons of earth, from the old man
who leaned on a crutch, to the infant whom his
mother laid in the cradle. The sick forgot their
pains, the sorrowful their troubles, the poor their
wants. All eyes were closed in peace. When he
had finished his work, the dear angel returned to his
stern brother, and laid himself down by his side,
and when the morning dawned, and the birds began
to sing, and men came forth to work, he smiled with
innocent joy, and cried, 'Now all men praise me as
their friend and benefactor! Oh, how sweet it is to
do good in secret! How happy are we unseen
messengers of happiness How blessed is our silent
Thus spoke the loving Angel of Sleep; but the
Angel of Death looked at him sorrowfully, and a tear
such as angels shed stood in his large dark eyes.
'Ah !' sighed he, 'that I like you could enjoy the
glad thanks of men! I am best known upon earth
as an enemy and destroyer of happiness.'
'Ah my brother,' cried the Angel ot Sleep, 'it
is when men awake on earth that they thank me for
my gift of rest; and when they awake in heaven, will
they not know thee as their friend and benefactor,
and bless thee too, who hast closed their eyes in the
34 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
evening of life? Are we not brothers, and servants
of one Father of all?' So spoke he, and joy filled
the eyes of the Angel of Death, as he tenderly
embraced his brother, who with him had come on
earth to work the will of Heaven.
'NO ONE WILL SEE US.'
WO children, Ernest and Josephine, found
themselves left alone in the house one
afternoon, all the rest of the family having
For some time they played together quietly; but
when they got tired of this, Josephine said to her
brother, 'Let us look about and get something
nice to eat. Nobody will know.'
Ernest hesitated. I should not mind, if we could
take anything without being seen,' he said.
Well, let us go to the cupboard,' said Josephine.
'The keys are in the door-I saw them--and we can
take some jam.'
'But when mamma comes back, she will see that
we have been at it,' said Ernest.
36 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
'Then let us go to the pantry, and taste the cream.
No one will miss a little.'
'But people passing on the road can peep into
the pantry, and we may be seen.'
'Well, let us go down into the kitchen, and take
a piece of that tart which was left at dinner. No
one will see us there; cook is out, you know.'
'But perhaps she will come in and catch us,'
'How afraid you are!' cried his sister. 'Shall I
tell you what we can do safely? Let us go down
into the cellar, and help ourselves to a few apples.
Surely nobody in the world can see us there, for it
is as dark as pitch.'
Ernest stopped to think. Then he said to his
Sister, 'Josephine, can't God see us in the cellar? Is
there any place where He will not see whatever we
do, and be angry if we do wrong?'
Josephine did not answer, but she knew that
Ernest was right, and never again proposed to steal
because there was no one who could see them.
A SPOILT CHILD.
SILLY little child used to cry for everything
to which he took a fancy, and would keep
on crying till he got it. This was of
course a great pity, but the poor little thing knew no
better; what was worse was, that his father and
mother used to encourage him in such a foolish habit,
and instead of teaching him to be more sensible,
always gave in to him, and would not let him be
checked or contradicted in any way. Of course he
was an only child, or he would not have been so
much spoiled. One day, when a number of visitors
were in the house, the lady saw her boy stamping
and crying and trying to beat his nurse, who seemed
to be refusing him something which he had set his
38 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
'Mary,' cried his mother, 'why are you making
my little darling cry? Give him what he wants.'
Well, ma'am, he must cry all day, and all night
too, if he wants it,' said Mary, who had quite lost her
temper through the constant worry which she was
obliged to put up with from her young master.
How dare you speak so, you rude girl? Give it
him, and make him quiet this instant.'
'I can't,' said Mary.
'Oh, my dear!' cried the lady to her husband,
who came running up and asked what was the matter,
' do speak to this rude girl, who contradicts me, and
won't give our little darling something which he is
I am very sorry, Mary, that you should behave
so rudely to your mistress, and make your young
master cry. You must be sent away if this happens
'Send me away if you like, sir, and see if you can
get a nurse who will give him what he is crying for.
He wants the moon, which he has just seen in a
bucket of water. How can I give him that?'
At this everybody in the room burst out laughing,
and the foolish father and mother looked at each
other, and felt rather ashamed of themselves. But
A SPOILT CHILD. 39
in the end they were led to think over their way of
bringing up the child, and to agree that it would be
well to teach him that he could not have everything
he cried for.
THE FOOLISH FLY.
NE day a clever young fly was sitting with
his mother near a kitchen fire-place, where
a large pot full of soup was boiling, and
smelt very nice.
The old fly was going out to pay a visit to one of
her friends, who was staying in another kitchen not
far off, and with whom she was in the habit of buzzing
over affairs in general for half an hour or so every
afternoon. But before she left she talked to her
child very seriously, and said,
'Stay where you are, my dear, and don't leave this
spot till I come back.'
'Why, mamma?' cried the young fly crossly, for he
had been thinking of going out to play as soon as his
parent's back was turned.
THE FOOLISH FLY. 41
Because I am afraid that you will go too near to
that boiling pot.'
'And why shouldn't I go near it, pray?' asked the
young fly, who thought he knew the world as well as
any of his elders.
'Because you will fall in, and be drowned.'
'And why shall I fall in?'
'I can't tell you; but trust my experience.' (Here
the young fly yawned disrespectfully.) 'Every time
that one of our species has been as foolish as to
fly over such a pot as that from which you see the
steam rising, I have always seen it fall in, and have
never seen one come out again.'
The old fly thought she had said enough to make
her son cautious, and flew away. But he made light
of her warning, and as soon as he was left alone,
began to say to himself,
'These old people are always so suspicious!'
Then he came a little nearer to the boiling pot,
'How unkind it is of her to wish to deprive me of
the innocent pleasure of flying a little over this fine
rich steam It will be as good as a dinner even to
smell it; and then there is the excitement and the
glory of having done what old flies are afraid to do.'
42 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
He now drew quite close to the pot, and went on,
'I am not such a fool as mamma thinks me.
Have I not wings, and am not I sharp enough to
keep myself out of accidents ? So, mamma, it is no
use your preaching to me, and talking about your
experience; I am going to have a little fun in flying
about this pot, and I should like to see what will
make me fall into it.'
With this he flew forward; but as soon as he got
into the steam of the pot, he was burned and stifled,
and fell down on the fire. Before dying, he had just
time to utter these words': Unhappy are the children
who do not listen to the advice of their parents !'
THE HALF-EMPTY BOTTLE.
GREAT battle was once fought between the
Germans and the Swedes, in which many
thousands were killed on both sides, and
at length the Swedes were defeated. In the evening,
a private soldier of the German army was placed as a
sentinel on the battlefield, at a place covered with
the bodies of dead and wounded men. He was very
tired and thirsty, and had no time to eat his supper
before going on duty, so he took with him a bottle of
beer to refresh himself.
Just as he was about to raise it to his lips, he heard
"a low groan beside him, and found that it came from
"a wounded Swede, who, tossing on the ground in pain
and fever, was faintly crying out for drink.
44 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
The good-natured soldier took pity on him, and,
stooping down, handed him the bottle, saying,
'Here You shall have half.'
But the Swede was mad with pain and rage, and
instead of feeling grateful to the other man, he sud-
denly pulled out a pistol and fired it in his face,
intending to kill him and take the whole of the beer
Luckily the ball only grazed the German's ear;
and when he saw the treachery of the man to whom
he was trying to be kind, he quietly took away the
bottle, and drank half of its contents. Then he gave
it back to the wounded man, only saying,
'There, you rascal, you can take your half now.'
When this generous act became known, the general
of the Germans sent for the soldier and rewarded him
handsomely. Besides, the king was so pleased with
him, that he gave him leave to wear a half-empty
bottle as his crest, and it is so worn by his descend-
ants to this day.
PRYING AND PEEPING.
MMA'S mother was a widow, and she was
an only child. So her mother loved het
very much, and was very sorry to see that
she had one great fault, which would make other
people dislike her. She was very inquisitive about
whatever was said or done by everybody she knew;
and if she could not find out in any other way, she
would listen at the door or take some other sly means
of getting to know what she wished. Her mother
often spoke to her about this, and tried to show her
how dishonest it was to pry into other people's secrets.
She was more than once turned out of the houses of
friends who had caught her spying upon them in
some such mean way. But for all that, Emma was
46 -SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
not cured of her curiosity till a sad accident happened
One day a gentleman called upon her mother, and
asked to see her alone. They went into the next
roum together, and Emma stole after them, for she
was on pins and needles to know what it was that
this gentleman could have to say to her mother.
Just as he was going to begin to speak, the gentle-
man noticed that the door had been left a little open.
He rose, and shut it sharply; but he had no sooner
done so, than a loud scream came from the other side,
and when he quickly opened it, Emma was seen lying
on the ground, rolling over and over in agony. She
had stolen to the door to listen, and her finger had
been in the chink when it was shut-to.
A doctor was at once sent for, but he could do
little to relieve poor Emma. The end of her finger
had to be cut off, and she suffered great pain for
many weeks. But this accident did her good, for she
never looked at this finger, shorter than the others,
without being warned against her temptation to listen
to other people's affairs.
HARLES TURNER had been a good boy,
and had said his lessons well for some
time, so his father wished to give him a
reward. He took him out into the garden, and
showed him a plot in which nothing was planted.
There !' he said, you have long wished to have
a garden of your own, and this is now to be set apart
for you. You can divide it into two parts, one for
flowers and the other for vegetables.'
Then he led the way to a little shed, where
there were a spade, a rake, a watering-pot, all
of a size which Charles could use. Besides, there
were baskets to carry earth, and cuttings in pots,
48 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
and little bags full of seeds, each one ticketed
with the name and the time at which it was to
You can fancy Charles' delight. He thought as
much of his little garden as if it had been a large
estate, and promised himself that it should be as
well taken care of as any part of his father's garden.
He spent all his spare time in it, and worked hard,
so that soon the bare earth began to be covered with
plants and blossoms.
He was often told never to go through the garden
door without shutting it after him; but one day he
went out for a few minutes, and forgot to do this.
The door being open, a hen that had got out of
the poultry yard, and was wandering about to see
what it could see, thought it might as well make a
journey into the garden. So in it went, and began
hunting for worms, of which it soon found plenty
in the rich earth. And of all places it chose out
one where Charles had just been planting some cut-
So when the boy came back, he found the hen
diligently scratching with its claws and digging with
its beak in the middle of his garden. Charles had.
never a very good temper, and now he was quite wild
THE HEN. 49
with anger. Oh, you brute !' he cried, I will make
you pay for this !'
At once he ran to shut the door, for fear the hen
should escape his vengeance; then he began to chase
it, throwing at it stones, sticks, clods of earth, and
whatever else he could lay his hands on.
The poor fowl, which hadn't known it was doing
wrong, was in a great fright, and did its best to escape.
First it waddled along as fast as it could, cackling
and clapping its wings; then it tried to fly, but found
the wall too high for it. It fell back once more into
Charles' flower beds, and was caught by the claws
among some sweet-peas.
'Ah! I'll have you now!' Charles cried, rushing
up. Only two rows of tulips and lilies separated
him from his victim in his rage he did not care that
he trampled them down to get at the hen. But just
as he thought he had it, the hen made a desperate
effort and got free, tearing away some of his prettiest
flowers, and the. chase began again. Charles caught
up his rake, and threw it as hard as he could after
the fowl. But, alas! it missed its aim, and struck
the greenhouse, where it broke a pane of glass, and
had two of its own teeth knocked out.
The angry boy, mode more angry than ever by
50 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
these misfortunes, ran to fetch his spade; and as
just then the poor hen got into a corner, he would
most likely have made short work with -it, if Mr.
Turner had not at that moment entered the gar-
Charles dropped the spade, and looked ashamed
to be seen in such a passion.
'Do you see, papa, what mischief this horrid beast
has done in my garden !' he said, as if to excuse him-
'Yes,' said Mr. Turner, 'I have seen it all. I was
looking out of the window, and I am not pleased
with you, Charles. You ought to be ashamed. to be
so angry with a poor hen. It doesn't know any
better; it meant no harm by digging up your flowers.
It was your own fault for not shutting the door of
the garden, as I bid you. And how could you wish
to be so cruel to the poor thing ? You should have
chased it away carefully, so as not to make any more
mischief; but, as it is, you have broken your rake
and my glass, and destroyed a great many of, your
- flowers. It would be much fairer than punishing the
hen, if I were to' take a stick and treat you as;you
wished to treat it. And I will not let this f.j:lli
anger pass without punishment. You will have to
TIE HEN. 51
pay for the greenhouse window out of your own pocket-
Poor Charles hung his head, and went sadly to see
how much mischief had been done. He made up
his mind that he would try not to lose his temper
".'. ,i '. .,, :_,r, it ,, I
S... '.v .,. '- -,r" - !i
THE YOUNG EMPEROR.
YOUNG Emperor of China, who came to
the throne when he was only thirteen years
old, was one day out hunting. He rode
so much faster than his attendants, that he left them
far behind, and found that he was all alone in an
unknown country. He looked about for somebody
to show him the way back, but could see no one
except a poor old man, who was crying bitterly, and
seemed to be in great trouble. The Emperor rode
up, and asked what was the matter.
'I am weeping,' answered the old man, 'for my
only son, who supported me in my old age, but who
has been seized and carried away for a slave.'
'Who has dared to do this?' asked the young
THE YOUNG EMPEROR. 53
Only one man in this part of the country has
power to do such unjust deeds, and that is the
Emperor's steward, who lives near this.'
'Let us go to him instantly, and order him to set
free your son !' cried the Emperor indignantly.
'Alas!' said the old man, shaking his head, 'you
do not know what a man he is! It will be easier
to raise up that mountain than to persuade him to
'At least I will try, and I think I can make the
Emperor's steward listen to reason,' said the prince.
' Follow me, old man, and your son shall be restored
'But this steward's house is more than tvo miles
away, and I can scarcely crawl as many yards,' said
the poor old man; and at that the Emperor leapt
from his horse.
'You are old; I am young; I will go on foot,' he
said, helping the old man to mount, and cutting short
'But ah !' said the poor father, 'you will have but
a bad reward for your kindness. This wicked steward
will only order you to be put to death, if you cross
'I will take the chance,' said the Emperor, laughing
54 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
in his sleeve; and then, telling the old man to lead
on, he followed him towards the house of the steward.
As they reached it they met the steward, accom-
panied by a band of slaves and attendants. When
he saw the old man, he began to speak harshly to him,
ordering him to stand out of the way; but as soon as
he perceived who was his companion, he changed
his tone, and, to the surprise of every one, flung himself
on the ground before the young Emperor, and humbly
begged to know what was his pleasure.
Wretch !' cried the Emperor, you know well my
pleasure is that you treat my subjects with justice
and mercy. Why have you taken this old man's son
to be your slave ?'
The steward, seeing that his cruelty was known,
trembled, and confessed that he had done wrong,
trying to make excuses and to promise that for the
.future he would do his best to please his royal master.
But the Emperor refused to listen, and sternly said,
'You are dismissed from the office of which you
are unworthy, and I put this good old man in your
place, and order you to be made a slave instead of
his son. It is vain to beg for mercy till you have
learned for yourself what are the sufferings which
you so heartlessly inflict upon others.'
TIHE YOUNG EMPEROR. 55
At this moment the Emperor's train rode up, and
crowded round him with every mark of respect.
The old man, who till now had scarcely been able
to believe his ears, now understood that it was the
Emperor himself whom he had met, and, kneeling
down with his son, would have thanked him for his
kindness with tears of joy, but the Emperor raised
'My friends, it is nothing more than my duty
to see that my poorest subjects are treated with
; "' .
CATCHING THE THIEF.
SFARMER had a fine horse stolen out of
his stable one night. He searched long
and far for the thief, but could not find
him, nor hear what had become of the horse; so
next market-day he went to the nearest town to buy
another. But as soon as he came into the market,
"the very first horse he saw was the one that had been
stolen from him. It neighed with pleasure to see
its master, and he at once caught it by the bridle,
and called out that it was his horse.
'What's that you say?' cried the man who was
trying to sell it. 'You are quite mistaken; it is
CATCHING THE THIEF. 57
'Indeed I am not,' persisted the farmer. 'This
horse was stolen from my stable three nights ago.'
'That can't be,' said the other, for I have had it
for three years.'
By this time a crowd had gathered round the two
men, and the farmer, who was not going to let
himself be cheated so easily, suddenly thought of a
plan. He clapped his hands over the horse's eyes,
and asked, 'If you have had this horse three years,
can you tell me which is his blind eye?'
Yes, that's only fair,' cried the crowd.
Now this man had really stolen the horse, but he
had not yet carefully examined it, so he was puzzled
what to say. But he thought he must say something,
so he guessed, 'The left eye.'
'You are wrong!' cried the farmer, taking away
one hand, and showing that the horse's left eye-was
Of course. I forgot. I meant that he was blind
of the right eye,' said the thief; but the farmer took
away his other hand, and cried out, 'You scoundrel!
the horse is not blind at all. I was sure that you
had stolen it, and told a lie into the bargain.'
At this the crowd laughed heartily. The thief did
not care to join in the laugh, and tried to sneak away
58 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
as soon as he could, but he was caught and dragged
off to the magistrate, who sent him to prison. So
by the farmer's clever trick he got back his horse,
and the thief was found out, and punished as he
THE THREE BILLYGOATS.
NCE upon a time there were three Billy-
goats, all brothers, of the name of Gruff,
and they had not enough to eat at home;
so they thought they would like to go to the
mountain to feed and get fat. And first the youngest
of the brothers set out by himself. But on the way
to the mountain there was a river, and over the river
a bridge, and under the bridge lived a great fierce
wolf, with eyes as large as saucers, and teeth as sharp
as knives, and when he heard the little Billygoat
patter-pattering over the bridge, he called out and
'Who's that going over my bridge ?'
'It's only me, the smallest Billygoat Gruff, and I
am going to the mountain to make myself fat,' said
the goat in a squeaking voice.
60 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
'Well, I'm coming to gobble you up,' said the
'Oh, please don't!' cried the Billygoat. 'I'm too
little. Wait till my brother comes. He's much
bigger than I am.'
'Very well. Get along with you,' said the wolf;
and off went the little Billygoat as fast as he could.
By and by the second Billygoat Gruff came tramp,
tramp across the bridge.
'Who's that going over my bridge?' cried the
'Oh! it's me, the second Billygoat Gruff, and I'm
going to the mountain to make myself fat.'
I'm going to gobble you up.'
'Oh no! Don't take me. I'm not big enough.
Wait till the oldest Billygoat Gruff comes; he's
much bigger than I am.'
'Get off with you then,' growled the wolf; and
away went the second Billygoat Gruff, and never
stopped till he reached the mountain.
After a while, up came the biggest Billygoat Gruff,
and he was so heavy that the bridge creaked and
cracked under him.
'Who's that going over my bridge?' roared the
THE THREE BILLYGOATS. 61
'Me, the biggest Billygoat Gruff, and I'm going to
the mountain to make myself fat.'
'Just wait a minute then, till I come and gobble
'Very well,' said the biggest Billygoat Gruff.
And the wolf came out from his den beneath the
bridge, and ran at the goat with open mouth. But
the goat poked the wolf's eyes out with his horns,
and knocked him down, and trampled and tore him
to death, and tossed his body over into the brook.
Then he went after his brothers to the mountain, and
they all got so fat that their own mother didn't know
them when they came home again.
PLAYING AT SOLDIERS.
BOUT a hundred years ago, there was a
gentleman who was often obliged to take
long journeys from home, leaving his wife
and two sons for weeks together. In these days it
was not safe to travel without arms, so he always
rode with two pistols, which, when he got home, he
usually unloaded for fear of accidents. But though
he was so careful, he over and over again had for-
bidden his sons to touch these pistols, or any other
firearms, telling them that it was very dangerous even
for grown-up people to play with such things.
One day, when he had just come home from one of
his journeys, and had to start again in a few hours, he
did not think it worth while to unload these pistols,
FLAYING AT SOLDIERS. 63
but hung them up in his study ready for use, sup-
posing that his sons would not think of touching
them after all he had said about it.
But before long, their father being out of the way,
the two boys, William and George, came into the
room and saw these pistols, which were generally
locked up out of their reach.
Let us come and play at soldie% said William to
his younger brother, and got up on a chair and took
down the pistols.
'Don't you know,' said George, 'that we mustn't
touch papa's pistols?'
'Never mind; they are not loaded, and we shan't
spoil them,' said William. 'See, George, you take
this one; I will have the other, and you must do
what I tell you.'
William cocked the pistol and pointed it at George,
who did so also, and his elder brother cried out,
At this they both pulled the triggers, and the pistols "
went off with a bang, filling the whole room with
smoke. At the same moment George gave a scream,
and fell on the floor, while William felt a sharp pain
in his ear, as if some one had struck him with a whip,
and, looking down, saw that his clothes were covered
64 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
with blood. He was terrified at what had happened,
and began to call out as loud as his brother; and
soon every one in the house, alarmed by their cries
and by the report of the pistols, was running to see
what was the matter.
Think of the agony of their mother when she found
what had happened! She fainted on the spot, and
none of the servants knew what to do. Luckily the
boys' father came in 'just then, and though he was
horrified at what he saw, he had his senses enough
about him to examine his sons' wounds and to send
for the doctor.
The next few days were a time of terrible anxiety
for all the family.
The ball had only touched the tip of William's
ear; but George was shot through the shoulder, and
for a time it was thought that his life was in danger.
But to the joy of his parents, he began at length to
get better, and in a few weeks was as strong and,
active as ever. But all their lives bothae and his
brother remembered this severe lesson, and took care
never again to play with firearms, nor to disobey
their father's orders.
THE LOST PENNY.
N one of the streets of London a little girl,
with an empty can in her hand, was looking
for something which she had lost, and cry-
ing bitterly as she was not able to find it. Among
others, she was seen by a gentleman who was passing
by, and who stopped to ask her what was the matter.
'Please, sir,' she said, 'mother sent me to buy a
pennyworth of milk, and I have dropped the penny
'That's a bad business,' said the gentleman.; 'You
should have taken better care of it.'
'Oh yes, sir, I know,' said the little girl, still cry ing;.
'but there was a marriage going on, and I went to the
church-door to look, and forgot I had the penny in
66 SISTER JANES LITTLE STORIES.
my hand, and then it fell somewhere, but I can't see
it now; and oh! mother will be so angry with me,
for we are very poor !'
The gentleman was touched at the child's distress.
He pulled out a penny, and gave it her instead of
the one she had lost. She thanked him heartily, and
ran away to buy the milk, while he went on his way.
But before he had gone far he heard footsteps
pattering after him, and, turning round, saw the little
girl quite red in the face, and out of breath.
'Hallo! Have you lost your penny again?' he
'No, sir; I have found it. It was lying just by
the railings at the church-door. So I have run after
you to give you back yours.'
'Never mind it, my dear,' said the gentleman, patting
her on the head. 'You can keep it too, for being
such an honest little girl. Only tell me your name,
and where you live.'
'My name is Lily Davies, and my father is a shoe-
maker in Winn Street.'
The gentleman made a note of this, and walked
off before little Lily quite understood that he
wished her to keep both pennies. It was not often
that she had a penny to spend for herself, and she
THE LOST PENNY. 67
thought a long time before she could make up her
mind what to buy with it. At length she bought a
halfpenny doll for her baby sister, and for the other
halfpenny got two small apples, one of which she ate
herself, and carried home one for her brother Ben.
When she got home and told what had happened,
her father and mother said she had done quite right,
and Ben was glad of his apple.
Now Ben was not such a good child as his sister,
and he began to think if he could not manage to
get a penny in the same way.
So next day, about the same time as his sister had
lost her penny, he went out into the same street and
began to howl as piteously as he could. Nobody
took any notice of him for a time, till at length the
same gentleman passed by, and again stopped to ask
what was the matter.
'Father sent me out with twopence to buy milk,
and I have lost it,' whined Ben, wiping his eyes,
and looking up to see if the gentleman was taking
out his purse.
Who is your father ?' he was asked.
Davies, the shoemaker, in Winn Street.'
'Oh He is just the man I want to speak to,'
said the gentleman. 'I will go home with you.'
68 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
At this Ben grew rather frightened, for he knew
it would come out that he had been telling a lie.
But the gentleman made the boy go with him; and
when they reached his father's house, he asked if
Ben had been sent out to buy milk, and was told,
What had Ben to say for himself? Not a word.
And his father was very angry, and shut him up in
the back room, with a promise of a sound whipping
as soon as the gentleman had gone.
But he did not go without telling Lily's parents
how much he had been pleased with her honesty,
and that he had come to say how glad he would be
if at any time he could be a friend to her. And in
the end, Lily, who had only done right because she
had been taught to do right without thinking of
reward or praise, found, as we all do, that honesty
is generally the best policy.
A STORY OF A SAVAGE.
N Englishman who had settled on a farm in
America was one day sitting in front of his
door, when an Indian, tired and hungry
after a long day's hunting, came up to him and
humbly begged for a piece of bread and a glass
Get away, you savage dog,' said the Englishman.
'You shall have nothing here.'
The poor Indian turned away, and luckily came
before long to a stream where he was able to quench
his thirst, and on the banks of which grew a few nuts
and berries fit to eat.
Some time after, this Englishman was out shooting
with a party of his friends, and, being separated from
70 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
the rest, lost his way in the woods. After wandering
about all day till he was tired out, and faint with
hunger, he at length came upon a wigwam in which
an Indian was sitting among his family, all busy in
making arrows.. The Englishman offered them a
reward if they would show him the way to the nearest
settlement of white men, but the Indian answered,
'It is tob late to-night. Stay here till the morning.
You shall be welcome.'
As there was no help for it, the Englishman ac-
cepted this invitation, and stayed all night with the
savages, who treated him kindly, giving him the best
they had to eat; and a deer-skin to sleep on, and
promising to wake him as soon as the day dawned.
The night passed. The Indian kept his word, and
guided the Englishman till he came iii sight of houses
and fields, and knew that he was near home, and
wished to send away his guide with the promised
reward. But the Indian would not take it, and
asked,' Do you not remember me?'
The Englishman looked hard at him, and for the
first time perceived that it was the same man whom
he had so harshly turned away from his door. He
would have tried to excuse his behaviour, but the
Indian cut him short, saying, Next time you see an
A STORY OF A SAVAGE. 71
Indian tired and hungry, be kind to him, and do not
call him a savage dog, and tell him to be off.' With
this he disappeared in the wood, leaving the English-
man thoroughly ashamed of himself. Now, which of
these two was more like a savage ?
THE FARMER AND THE BIRD.
HERE was once a pretty bird which used to
sing beautifully in the woods and gardens,
and, among other places, often sang near
the house of a farmer, who, instead of being pleased
to hear its sweet notes, only thought that if he could
catch the bird, it would sell for a good deal of money.
So he put bird-lime on some twigs; and the next time
the poor creature perched upon them, it found that
it could not get away, and was held fast till the
farmer came and put it in a cage, where he intended
it to spend all the rest of its life. The little bird was
in great trouble at being thus made a prisoner, and,
to the farmer's astonishment, he heard it speaking to
him as plainly as if it had been a human being, and
piteously begging to be set free. But the cruel man
THE fARMER AND THE BIRD. 73
would not agree to this, and tried to persuade the
bird to submit cheerfully to its fate. 'If you can
talk,' he said, 'you ought to have sense to understand
that you will be much better off as you are. You
will always be lodged in a comfortable cage, and be
well taken care of, and have as much to eat and
drink as you like.'
'Ah! but I was made to live in the woods, and I
can never be happy in a cage,' sighed the bird.
Wait till you have tried,' said the farmer; but still
the bird kept asking him to let it go. Have you no
pity ?' it cried.
'Yes, but I like money better. I intend to sell
you for at least half-a-crown.' And he was going to
carry it in-doors, but the bird tried another way of
talking to him. 'If you have only caught me for
what you can get for me, I will pay you to set me
'Oho I what will you pay?' says the farmer.
'Why! I will teach you three things, which will
save you a great many half-crowns if you attend to
The farmer scratched his head, and set down the
cage. 'What are these three things?' he asked.
'Let me out first, and then I will tell you,' said the
74 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
bird. 'I can't trust you after the way in which you
have entrapped me, but I am sure you never knew a
bird break its promise.'
'It's a risk,' thought the farmer. But the bird
kept telling him that the three things it had to
teach would be of the greatest use to him; and
at length he agreed to the bargain, and opened the
The bird flapped its wings, and made haste to fly
to the highest branch of the nearest tree, where it
perched itself and began to sing for joy at having
gained back its freedom.
'Now for the three things you are to teach me !'
cried the farmer.
'By all means,' said the bird, looking down on him
from the top of the tree. The first is this: Don't
trust yourself on every twig, and don't believe every
I knew that before,' growled the farmer. What
is the next thing?'
'The next thing is: Don't be discontented when
you lose anything.'
'Is that all? I hope the last thing you have to
say will be worth more,' cried the farmer, getting
THE fARMER AND THE BIRD. 75
'Yes, it will. The last is : Keep what you have
got, while you can.'
'I'll wring your neck the next time I can catch
you,' roared the farmer, in a great rage.
'But you can't catch me,' said the bird; and,
spreading its wings, flew away to the woods, singing
as it went, and never again came near the house of
this cruel and covetous man.
THE NAUGHTY PRINCE.
HERE was once a young prince, who, like
other little boys, was often naughty, but,
unlike other little boys, was not punished
when he was so. His tutor did not like to punish
the King's son; but somebody must be punished,
and his plan was to punish Muff, the prince's pretty
little dog. Whenever the little prince deserved to be
whipped, the whipping was given to Muff instead,
which Muff thought was not at all fair.
One day his royal highness was very naughty. He
was playing in the garden, and when some one re-
minded him that perhaps it was time for him to go to
his lessons, he asked one of the pages to tell him
what o'clock it was. The page took out his watch
THE NAUGHTY PRINCE. 77
to look; then suddenly the mischievous prince took
it into his head to snatch it away from him and throw
it into a fountain, where, he said, it could take a drink
that hot day.
When the tutor heard of this trick of his pupil,
he was very ill-pleased, and declared that the prince
deserved to be punished. So he shut up Muff in the
cupboard. At first the prince laughed at this; but
after a while, when he heard poor Muff scratching
and whining, he felt sorry for it, and begged that it
might be let out.
'No,' said the tutor; 'you have done wrong, and
Muff must be punished.'
'But Muff hasn't done anything wrong,' said the
prince, and began to think that it was not fair for
poor Muff to suffer for it, when he had misbehaved
Presently he again begged his tutor to let Muff
out, and put him in its place. So Muff was set free,
to the little dog's great delight, and the prince was
shut up for three hours. Here he had time to think
how badly he had behaved, and to make up his mind
that he would do better for the future, and, at all
events, not allow Muff to be punished for his faults
any more. And to show that he was in earnest, the
78 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
first thing he did when he had been let out, was to
go to the page whose watch he had spoiled, and give
him his own, which was a far better one, in exchange.
This was behaving like a prince.
_-: z_-*- --\
THE KNIGHT AND THE GREYHOUND.
HERE was once a knight who was very fond
of hunting and fighting, and often went
away from home, leaving his only child,
whom he loved very dearly. Besides, he had two
pets, a greyhound and a falcon, which were the play-
fellows of the little child, and slept and ate in the
same room with it.
One day, while the knight was out hunting, the
nurse left the room where the child was sleeping in
its cradle. The faithful old greyhound'was sleeping
beside it, and the falcon, perched at the head of the
Cradle, had almost fallen asleep too. But luckily the
bird was wide awake enough to see a terrible danger
80 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
which threatened the child. A great serpent had
come out of a hole in the wall, and was creeping
towards the cradle with open jaws.
The falcon at once began to flap its wings so
loudly as to awake the dog, who saw the serpent just
in time to seize it as it was about to dart upon the
sleeping child. A desperate fight then took place
between the two animals, and in the end the grey-
hound killed the serpent, but not without being
seriously hurt by its cruel enemy.
In the meanwhile the knight was riding slowly
homewards to his castle, when he saw the falcon
flying towards him, and fluttering round his head as
if to urge him to make haste. Fearing that something
must be the matter at home, he spurred his horse
and galloped as fast as he could to the castle. As
soon as he reached the gate, the screams of the nurse
led him at once to the room where he had left his
child, and there he saw a sight which filled him with
rage and grief.
The cradle was upset, and the poor little baby was
lying on the floor covered with blood, while the grey-
hound stood over it, and was also marked with blood.
The knight's first thought was that the dog had killed
his child, and, not stopping to think, he drew his
TIHE KNIGHT AND THE GREYHOUND. 81
sword, and with one stroke laid the faithful animal
dead at his feet.
Then a faint cry came from the child, and showed
that it was still alive; and when they raised the
cradle, they found behind it the body of the serpent
which the greyhound had killed.
The knight understood it all now, and was bitterly
sorry that in his passion he had killed the faithful dog,
which had been wounded in defending his child.
He would have given anything he had in the world
to make the poor greyhound alive again, but it was
too late; and all his life he could not forget the folly
and ingratitude with which he had rewarded this
brave and faithful animal. So great was his repent-
ance, that he never went hunting or fighting again,
and in this way punished himself for his rashness.
N old gentleman, called Mr. Goodman, who
was very fond of children, once went to
pay a visit to a friend of his, who, he knew,
had two sons and a daughter. So, before starting,
he bought three nice presents for them,-a knife for
the elder boy, a humming-top for the younger one,
and a beautiful little work-box for the girl. With
these in his pockets, he rode to his friend's house.
When he got there, the elder boy, whose name
was Robert, ran out with a whip in his hand, and
began to strike the old gentleman's horse on the
hind legs, till it kicked, and nearly threw him off.
When the boy's father came out and found him doing
so, he scolded him well; but Mr. Goodman was
sorry to see that he did not seem to mind much what
NAUGHTY CHILDREN. 83
his father said to him, but only made a face and ran
away laughing into the garden. So the old gentleman
thought he had better keep his presents in his pocket,
till he was quite sure whether these children deserved
them or not.
They now went into the house, and soon the little
girl came running into the parlour with her frock in
a sad mess.
Why, Lucy, you are not fit to come down-stairs
in such a state!' said her mamma. What have
you been doing?'
'I ran into the stable-yard while nurse was not
looking,' cried Lucy, as if she was saying something
very funny. Then I fell down in the dirt, and nurse
said I was not to come out of the nursery till she
had got me a clean frock; but I did come, and she
could not catch me !'
Her mamma said she was wrong to be so dis-
obedient, and told her to go up-stairs at once,
which she would not do till she had stared rudely
at the visitor for several minutes. And no sooner
had she been got rid of, than Freddy, the smallest
of all, came screaming and sobbing with rage because
the gardener would not let him play with the water-
ing-pot ; and though he was offered an apple if he
84 SISTER JANES LITTLE STORIES.
would only be quiet, he kept on crying till dinner-time,
and made such a noise that Mr. Goodman could
scarcely hear himself speak.
Robert and Lucy came in to dinner, but it was
quite plain that they did not know how to behave
themselves. They both wanted to be helped first,
and neither of them were satisfied with anything
that was given them, but kept calling out first for
one thing and then for another, though their father
threatened several times to send them away from
the table. Mr. Goodman was much vexed to
see this. When he had been a little boy, he had
always been taught that children should be seen,
and not heard; but these children would let no one
be heard but themselves.
Little Freddy came down to dessert, and then it
was much worse, for he wanted everything he saw,
and his brother and sister would let him have nothing.
They all began to sprawl over the table, and fight
for everything that was on it; and the end of it was,
that Lucy pushed a plate of apples on the floor, and
broke it, while Freddy upset a glass of wine into his
mamma's lap, and spoilt her new dress. After that
they were sent off to the nursery, for no one could
put up with them any longer. And when Mr. Good-
2VA UGHTY CHILDREN 85
man saw how badly they behaved, he thought he
would keep the pretty presents he had brought till
he found three better children.
It he comes to see any of the little boys and girls
who may read this story, I hope they will remember
this, and do what they are told, and give as little
trouble as they can.
busy in the kitchen, and said to her,
'My dear, run and get me a lemon.
Here is the key of the cupboard.'
When the little girl found herself all alone in the
cupboard, she did not lock it up and come away as
soon as she had found the lemon, but looked all
about at the good things of which it was full, and
began to think if there was not something nice which
she could have a bite at without any one knowing
anything about it. Soon she saw on a shelf a jar in
which she knew that her mother kept honey. She
would just dip her finger in, and taste.
So she fetched a chair, got up on it, stood on
tiptoe, lifted the lid of the jar, and put her hand in.
T77E JAR OF HONEY. 87
But no sooner had she done so than she felt it
bitten dreadfully. She gave a loud scream, and
quickly drew back her hand, and brought out hanging
to it a crab, which had seized her in its claws, and
would not let go.
The fact was, that her mother had finished the
honey some days ago; and as the jar was empty,
she had that morning put some crabs into it, which
of course Margaret did not know.
When she heard her child calling out, she ran up
in a great fright, and at once saw what had happened.
She made haste to take the crab off Margaret's bruised
fingers, and as she did so, she said,
My dear, let this be a warning to you. Greediness
and dishonesty are sure to bring pain and trouble on
you, sooner or later. Learn to overcome these faults
before you are bitten by worse things than crabs.'
ARTHA was a girl of a very bad temper.
Her mother often told her what a wrong
thing anger was, and how much harm she
would do to herself if she gave way to it, and begged
her to try and put a check on herself, but Martha did
One day she was playing with a monkey, and
holding a looking-glass in front of it, so that it should
see itself. Then Master Monkey was frightened, and
drew back, and shuddered, and looked so funnily
"afraid of this picture of himself which was in front
of him. He could not understand it. He had not
seen another monkey for years. Where could this
east have come from? The monkey fairly turned
and ran away.
THE MIRROR. 89
'Oh, he is ashamed to see how ugly he looks !'
cried Martha, laughing and clapping her hands.
Then, as the monkey was not to be coaxed back,
she sat down at a little table, and began painting
a picture in her drawing-book.' Her brother was
sitting at the other side of this table, and fidgeting
about with his legs as boys are so apt to do; and
presently what does he do but kick over the table,
upsetting the paints, and spilling a tumbler of water
over Martha's picture, and into the lap of her new
dress Martha jumped up in a furious rage. Her
eyes shone, her cheeks were red as fire, and all her
face was distorted with anger.
'Oh, you bad, wicked, careless boy!' she cried,
not paying any attention to her brother's begging
her pardon, and telling her that he was very sorry;
and no one knows what she would have gone on
to say or do, but her mother caught up the same
mirror with which Martha had been playing with the
monkey, and held it before her own face. She
started back as amazed as the monkey had been.
She looked horrified, her rage left her all at once,
and she began to cry bitterly.
'Do you see how ugly you are, then?' asked her
mother. My dear Martha, when will you learn how
90 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
bad for yourself, and how unpleasant for others, is
that habit of yours of getting into such passions?
Now you know how you look when you are in one of
them; and let me tell you that if you often allow
yourself to put on such fearful frowns, your face will
come by and by to look always so, and no one who
sees you will care to know you.'
Martha could not help thinking over what her
mother said. If passion made her so ugly, that, like
the monkey, she could not bear to see her face in
a mirror, she felt that she must really not give way
so often to it. So she set herself to overcome her
bad temper, and by trying hard was able to keep
herself from flying out into a rage whenever she was
vexed. All faults may be overcome by trying hard;
and all faults make us look ugly, if not in the sight
of men, yet surely in the eyes of God.
THE SENSIBLE DOG.
LITTLE boy was one day going very
unwillingly to school. Every now and
then he stopped to look at something-he
sat down-he pulled flowers from the hedge-he
chased butterflies- he dropped his book. It was
quite plain that he did not like learning to read.
'Oh, you stupid book !' he kept saying. How I
wish you would fly away and never come back again
to trouble me !'
But the book did not fly away, and the school was
now coming in sight. And the little boy came up to
a gate, at which was chained a great black dog, which
jumped and barked at him, as if to say, 'Good
92 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
'Oh, dear dog; I wish I was a dog like you,' said
the little boy; and then the dog-now you need not
believe this unless you like-spoke out quite plain
and answered him,
Bow wow if you wish to be a dog, you can't be a
'But I do hate going to school. It is so hard to
learn, and I am always getting into trouble. If I
were a dog, I should have nothing to do.'
'That shows that you don't know much about it,'
replied the dog. If you were a dog, you would have
to do as I do; and my work is far harder than what
you have at school.'
'Work I thought you sat here all day in the sun,
and did nothing but lick your paws.'
'I wish you would change places with me and try.
In a few minutes my master will unloose me, and I
shall have to go to the fields and run about after
these stupid sheep all day. I can tell you that is
hard work-almost as hard as making idle boys learn
their lessons, I should think.'
'But when you come home at night you have no
lessons to learn; and oh you don't know how hard
it is to learn lessons !'
'No; but I have to watch all night, and guard the
THE SENSIBLE DOG. 93
farm. When you are snug in your warm bed you may
hear me barking out in the cold, and often keeping
at it for an hour or two, till I am quite hoarse, if I
think there are robbers about.'
'At all events you are not obliged to look at a
stupid book, and learn long words off by heart."
I am not, because dogs are not fit to learn. But
for this reason I am chained up and serve my master
like a slave. Man is the master of all the other
animals, because he is able to learn to read. So you
go to school, and mind your book, or else you will
only be fit to be chained up and to bark.'
Well, now, I always thought your life was nothing
but fun,' said the little boy, astonished at what the
dog told him.
And you thought wrong. Every one in the world
has to work at something. It is your duty as a child,
who will grow into a man, to do that nobler work foi
which dogs are too ignorant. You don't hear me
grumbling and whining because it is my lot to be a
dog. No! I try honestly and diligently to do my
duty; and if you don't take my advice and do yours,
which for the present is to use your time well at
school, why, you will show that you have not so much
sense as a dog.'
94 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
The boy stood still, and looked puzzled. Just
then the bell of the school began to ring, giving him
warning that he had only a few minutes to spare.
'Well, I believe you are right,' he said to the dog.
'Good-bye. I will run off to school and try to
become fond of learning.'
And he caught up his book, and ran on as hard as
he could, just as the dog's master came to loose it
for the day's work.
ITTLE George did not know what an echo
was. One day he was out playing near a
hill side, and began to shout out,
In a moment he heard the same words repeated
from the hill. He thought there must be some one
hidden there who was calling to him, and asked at
the pitch of his voice,
'Who are you?'
The voice only replied, Who are you ?'
Who are you, I want to know ?' cried George.
'Who are You, I want to know?' replied the voice.
'You are a stupid !' said George; and the strange
voice called back again,
'You are a stupid!'
96 SISTER JANE'S LITTLE STORIES.
George thought it was some one making fun of him,
and got angry, and began, I am sorry to say, calling
names at the hill side. But whatever he said was
repeated exactly. At length George ran up to the
hill side to see who was playing these tricks. But
now he could hear or see no one.
So he ran home and told his mother all about it,
complaining of this mischievous person who hid him-
self to make fun of him. His mother could not help
laughing at his mistake; but when she had explained
to him what an echo was, she said seriously,
'You see you heard nothing but your own words
brought back to you. If you had spoken to the hill
civilly, it would have answered you civilly also. It is
the same in our life for the most part. The way in
which others behave to us is very often the echo
of the way we treat them. If we behave kindly to
them, they behave kindly to us. But if we are rude,
selfish, and troublesome to those we have to do with,
we can't expect anything better from them. So take
a lesson, George, from the echo, and see that you get
back none but good answers.
Let us hope he did I
THE RIGHTFUL HEIR.
NCE upon a time a certain King had a son
who should have been his heir, and ruled
over his kingdom when he was grown up.
But the King's brother was a wicked man, who wished
to take the crown for himself. So, when his brother
died, he caused the child to be seized, and sent one
of his servants to drown it in the sea, pretending to
the people that the little prince had fallen sick and
Now this servant was not such a bad-hearted man
as his master, and he could not bear to drown the
child. So he put it in a little boat and launched it
out to sea, then went back and told the cruel uncle
that his orders had been obeyed, and his nephew was