BST ORI i
The Baldwin Library
WITH SIX COLOURED ILLUSTRATIONS.
TRANSLATED FROM THE GERMAN
MADAME DE CHATELAIN.
rOSEPH, MYERS & CO., 144, LEADENHALL STREET, E.C.
THE MUFFETEES .................. ... ........ .... ................ 1
THE GOLD AND SILVER FISHES.......................................... 6
THE SUGAR Box ......................................... .. ....... ...... 9
THE LITTLE BASKET ......................................... ........... 12
THE RETURN OF MAY............................................... 17
THE Two POODLES ..................... ......... .. .................. 34
LITTLE MAX AND HIS MONEY BOX .................... ........... 48
THE FLOWER GARDEN ................. ................... .......... 61
THE BUNCH OF KEYS ........... .......................... ...... 74
THE FOUR GIFTS... .......................... .................... 91
THE STORY OF PRINCESS HULDA, WHO NEVER LAUGHED............... 117
Do you wish to know why most little children
wear muffetees instead of gloves with fingers,
like grown-up people ? Well, if you listen, I will
One day mamma had to go out, when she said
to the five fingers: "Now, children, be good while
I am away from home, and do as I bid you. If
you behave prettily, and are obedient, I'll bring
you each a nice little house, in which you can live
when you feel cold in winter."
0 mammy," cried the five fingers, "we will
be sure and mind you; only tell us what to do."
Mamma then said:-
"The Forefinger shall point as he knows how-
The Middle finger he shall only bow:-
The one who'll wear a ring some day or other,
Shall watch no harm befalls his lesser brother-
While Master Thumb shall see that every one
With right good will what mammy bids has done."
2 THE MUFFETEES.
"You can go, dear mammy," said the fore-
finger, "I will be sure to be diligent, and point
very prettily, if you will bring me something."
And the middle finger cried: "I will be sure to
be polite, and bow prettily; only don't bring me
too small a house, for I am the tallest of all."
"I," quoth the ring-finger, "will be sure to
keep watch over my little brother; but, then, my
house must be the prettiest of all."
No, mine," cried the little finger, mine
must be prettier than all the others; so I'll not
make the least noise."
The thumb merely said: Mammy, I'll do as
Scarcely had their mother been gone a few
minutes, when the forefinger said: "It is very
fatiguing to be so diligent, and to be always
pointing, so I'll rest for a moment."
And he laid himself down.
"Why you, lazy fellow!" said the middle finger;
"what should I say, then ? For it's much more
fatiguing to bow than to point."
THE MUFFETEES. 3
And he was about to lie down, when the fore-
finger rose up, and gave him a push, saying: "Nay
you are lazy enough yourself, how dare you abuse
me, you naughty boy?"
Thereupon the middle finger gave him a rap,
which the forefinger returned, and who knows how
long they would have belaboured each other, had
not the ring-finger cried out: Oh, for shame!
one is just as lazy as the other! Only see how I
am bothered with having to keep watch continu-
ally! But I will take a little rest for once, and
you great hulking sluggards may watch our little
brother in the meantime."
What!" exclaimed the fore and middle fingers
in a breath, Do you dare, you little shrimp, to
abuse your big brothers, and give them orders for-
sooth! Only wait a bit."
And they both began belabouring the ring-finger.
The latter defended himself with all his might, and
upset the little finger he had been appointed to
take care of. The little one raised a tremendous
outcry, and began, likewise, to push and to scratch
4 THE MUFFETEES.
as well as he could. They were in the hottest of
the fray, when the door suddenly opened, and in
walked their mamma.
0 how frightened were the four naughty fingers!
They hung their heads, and felt so ashamed, that
they were unable to speak at first.
At last the middle finger began, by saying that
the forefinger had been lazy in the first instance,
and he could not suffer that. The forefinger in
turn laid the blame on the middle finger, and said
the latter had abused him first. The ring-finger
complained of them both, and the little finger of
all the three big ones.
But mammy said: "You are all four of you unso-
ciable and disobedient children who deserve punish-
ment. Look here, at what was intended for you."
And she drew out of her pocket a charming,
dainty little glove which contained five tiny
houses, just of the size of the five fingers-one
for the thumb, one for the forefinger, one for the
middle finger, one for the ring-finger, and one for
the little finger.
"But you shall not have these pretty little
houses now," said mamma; and out she went,
and presently returned with another glove.
"Look," said she, "this glove has but one
separate house, and the thumb shall have it all to
himself because he is good, and does what he is
bid; while you others will have to live together,
and it is only when you shall have grown sociable
and obedient that you will each get a house of
And so it was decided, and let the four fingers
beg as hard as they might, it was all of no use.
It is ever since that time that so many little
children wear muffetees; nor is it until they have
grown bigger and wiser that they have gloves
with fingers given them.
THE OCLD AND SILVER FISES.
IN a nice, clear little pool, there once lived a couple
of the prettiest fishes ever seen. One was as yellow
as gold, and the other as white as silver, except
two little black spots on his fins. They were very
cheerful, and swam about right merrily.
Not far from the little pool, lay a broad sheet of
deep water, in which lived all sorts of large fishes.
And one day the gold fish said to the silver fish:
" Come, let us swim into the large sheet of water,
for it is so pent up and so lonely here."
Nay, nay," replied the silver fish, let us rather
stay where we are. We have plenty of room here,
and can play so nicely with the sunbeams."
But there's more room yonder, and more sun-
beams are to be seen there," said the obstinate gold
fish; "and if you wont come with me, I shall go
alone." So saying off he swam; while the silver
fish, not liking to abandon his brother fish, swam
THE GOLD AND SILVER FISHES. 7
Now it happened that in the large sheet of water,
there lived a very big pike, who was fond of eating
up the lesser fry of fishes.
And no sooner did he see the two fishes coming
along, than he swam to meet them, and opened his
large jaws and snapped them up.
Although he had big, sharp teeth, he was in too
great a hurry to chew the fishes, and swallowed
them whole, which was lucky for them, as they
thus remained alive in his inside. Still they were
uncomfortable enough, you may be sure; for oh!
it was so dark, and they lay so closely packed, that
they could scarcely move.
And they could not help crying, and little goldy
said: Oh that we had remained in our small, clear
pool, where we had so much room! Oh dear-
oh dear! Unless we soon get some air and some
sunshine, I shall certainly die."
The kind silver fish tried to comfort his fellow-
sufferer, and said: Take patience, and something
better may perhaps turn up."
And sure enough something better did turn up;
8 THE GOLD AND SILVER FISHES.
for there soon came a fisherman to catch fish in
the large sheet of water. He cast his net, and
caught the big pike who had swallowed the two
little fishes. The fisherman carried him home,
and when he killed him, out tumbled the two little
The fisherman washed them clean, and put them
into a large glass bowl filled with cool water, and
offered them for sale to the mother of a young
family, who bought them for the children.
It is true the fishes had now to live in much
smaller waters than when in the pool; still they
were very thankful to be rescued from the pike's
stomach, and to be placed in a clean glass bowl,
that stands near the window, and through which
the sun shines so brightly.
And so they swim merrily round and round,
and all the children are delighted to look at them.
THE SUGA BOX,
THERE once stood upon a table a tin sugar-box,
containing a good many lumps of sugar of all
shapes, some large, others small, some angular,
some oblong, besides a number of little fragments.
Now one of the pieces happened to be larger and
thicker than all the rest, and was very proud in
I am your king," said he to the others, and
that's why I lie at the top of you all. You are my
humble servants, and the very little pieces and the
fragments shall be under all the rest-because I
choose it to be so!"
The little lumps and the fragments did not ven-
ture to gainsay him, and did actually place them-
selves at the very bottom of the box.
But one lump of sugar of middle size, as sharp
as it was bold, said: Nay, we are all chips of the
same block, if you come to that; and one of us is
just as sweet as the other."
10 THE SUGAR BOX.
Ho, ho!" answered the large lump of sugar,
"but I'm bigger than any of you; therefore I'm
much sweeter and more valuable."
Humph!" moralised the angular lump of
sugar, "don't be too proud of your size; perhaps
you'll have to sing small some day, by being
chopped into little bits."
I should like to see who'd dare do any such
thing," said the big lump, and was about to add
something more, when a little boy came into the
room, and, taking up the sugar-box, carried it into
the kitchen, to his mother.
Mammy," said he, sister Lotty is so heated
and thirsty with her naughty head-ache, that she
begs you will give her a glass of sugar and water.
So I have brought the sugar-box for you to mix
That's right, my little man," said his mother,
I like to see you so attentive to your sister. I
will pour some nice cool water into a glass directly,
and do you, in the mean time, choose a couple of
large lumps of sugar."
THE SUGAR BOX. 11
The boy lifted the lid of the sugar-box, and
Stop," said he, here's a big lump at the top;
that will be enough."
And, so saying, he seized the piece of sugar that
was so proud of its size.
You see," said the latter to the other lumps of
sugar, that I am chosen before any of you. I
shall now surely become greater than ever."
But the proud lump of sugar was grievously
mistaken; for no sooner had the little boy thrown
it into the glass of water, than it grew smaller and
smaller, and at last melted so completely, that
not even the least particle of it was to be seen.
The water, however, was now sweetened. The
boy carried it to his little sister, and the sick Lotty
was much refreshed by it. When children behave
prettily, we are quite willing to take the largest
lump of sugar-let it be as proud as it may-and
put it into water to melt, and then give the water
thus sweetened to the little ones to drink.
THE LITTLE fAS1ET.
ON an elegant round table stood a small, delicate,
brown basket with a couple of neat handles,
belonging to a little girl. The basket contained
nothing but a few bright coloured woollen threads
with which the little owner intended knitting a
pair of socks for her doll.
But Rosa, for such was her name, was not
industrious; so the woollen threads were left
lying in the basket, and no socks were made.
What the doll might say on the subject I know
not, but the little basket was very indignant about
it, and feeling vexed at having nothing to carry
but a few light threads, said to itself: I wish I
could get rid of all the old wool, and then,
perhaps, I should be used for some better purpose."
While the little basket was thinking this, Rosa
came running into the room, and, seizing one of
its handles, shook its contents on to the table, and
then ran down stairs basket in hand.
THE LITTLE BASKET. 13
There!" thought the basket in high glee,
"who knows what this may lead to? I shall now,
certainly, have something pretty to carry."
Meanwhile Rosa hastened into the garden, and
placed her little basket on the grass, beside of a
large dorser, which was already half filled with
apples. Up in the apple-tree sat the gardener,
who kept flinging down apple after apple, while
the children flew all about the grass-plot to pick
them up, and put them into the large basket.
Ay, now I, too, shall be filled with pretty red-
cheeked apples," said the dainty little basket to
the large dorser.
But the latter answered proudly: You weak
little thing, how should you be able to carry apples?
Only such as I are fit for that kind of work."
This nettled the little basket, who observed:
"Well: I suppose I shan't remain quite empty,
That might possibly happen!" answered the
big basket, making a face at the little one.
Just at this moment Rosa came with an apron-
14 THE LITTLE BASKET.
full of flowers, and shook them into her brown
basket. But the dorser still continued to be filled
Only look," said the little basket to the big
one, "I am now a flower-basket. See what pretty
flowers I am carrying; how beautiful are the
varied hues of these china-asters and balsams! and
how delightful the smell of the stock-gilliflowers
Yes, that just suits you," sneered the dorser;
"make the most of your flowers; they can't be
turned to any use-they'll have withered in no time,
and have neither colour nor fragrance left. Instead
of that, only look at my apples-how large and
rosy-cheeked they are! They might stay a couple
of weeks with me, before they grew rotten; and
then what nice things can be made with them-
fritters, marmalade, stewed apples, apple wine, and
ever so many dainties besides! It seems to me to
be a much finer sort of thing to carry apples
rather than flowers."
On hearing this, the little basket grew sad again,
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THE LITTLE BASKET. 15
and said, weeping: "I'm very unlucky to have
always the worst things to carry! 0, if I were but
filled with apples, how happy I should be!"
Scarcely had the little basket uttered its lamen-
tation, when its wish came to pass.
The dorser being now filled to overflowing with
apples, those uppermost kept falling down, while
the children's pockets were all crammed full of
apples, and plenty more lay on the grass. Rosa's
brother Paul then pounced upon the delicate little
basket, flung the flowers away, and filled it entirely
with the biggest apples.
The little basket was finely pleased! But its joy
did not last very long, for while the maid carried
the large dorser into the house, Paul said to Rosa:
Come, sister, do you take the basket by one
handle, while I take the other, and let's carry it
They accordingly raised it from the ground, but
alas! the apples proved too heavy; one of the
handles broke, and both basket and apples fell on
16 THE LITTLE BASKET.
"You weak thing," said little Paul, kicking
away the dainty basket, you can't even carry a
few apples !"
But Rosa picked it up, and said sorrowfully:
" O, my poor little basket, how piteous you do
And piteous enough the poor little basket looked
indeed. One handle was quite wrenched off, while
the other was broken through the middle; besides
which, there was a great hole in its side. There
was no help for it but to give the basket to the
basket-maker to be mended.
It lay for several weeks at the basket-maker's,
all in the dust, amidst a heap of other baskets.
When it was at length mended, it did not look
so pretty by half as it used to do, and Rosa did
not care to place it on her elegant little round
table. She put it in a corner of her play-room,
and filled it with all sorts of rags; and there it
stands, waiting sorrowfully for the time when it
shall be once more filled with flowers.
THE RETURN OF MVAY.
Do you know which is the loveliest time of the
whole year? Why, the time when the trees are
all white, not with snow, but with blossoms; when
all plants not in blossom, have buds; when the
birds twitter most merrily, and the children frisk
about in high glee in the garden, singing:
In May, in May,
All's new and gay."
Yes, the month of May is the sweetest time of
the year, and all living things rejoice in it. The
small May-flowers put forth their tiny heads, and
shake their little bells, and take the greatest pains
to smell nice, in order to vie with the delicious
fragrance of the elder; the lambs are willing to be
shorn of their wool, because in warm weather they
don't require their fur covering; the bullocks like
to be driven out into the fields, because there they
find green fodder, which the cows relish so well,
18 THE RETURN OF MAY.
that they give in return the sweetest, thickest
milk, that makes such nice May butter; the bees
begin to gather sweet honey from the flowers; a
number of pretty butterflies fling off their ugly
caterpillar's skin, and flutter about gaily; while
worms and chafers creep out of the earth, and all
creatures are pleased and of good cheer.
Such was the case with a young cockchafer, who
sat on a rose-bush that grew in a large garden,
and displayed a number of buds, though only one
full-blown rose. It was on this rose the cockchafer
had perched himself, and he enjoyed the warm air
You must know that he had spent a whole year
in the dark earth, so that it was pleasant now to
be sitting all of a sudden in the bright sunshine,
and he gazed with delight at the blooming fruit
trees, with their tender green leaves.
O," cried he, "how many pretty trees have been
planted here for me! I shall have plenty to eat!"
And he began to gnaw one of the green leaves of
THE RETURN OF MAY. 19
This rose-bush," thought the cockchafer,
"pleases me vastly, and I shall keep it entirely
for my own use. It will soon be in full blossom,
and then I shall have rooms and bed-chambers in
abundance. While I still lived underground, I
often ate part of its root, and now I find that its
leaves taste very nice. Really, this is quite a dif-
ferent sort of life to what I led when I lived under
the rose-bush. I am now no longer a thick, ugly
worm, who could only creep along slowly, and
was always pursued by those nasty moles. Now
I'm a splendid, brown cockchafer, who is able to
fly about. I have, besides, a shining black shield
on my back, and claws to my feet, so that nobody
must attempt to hurt me."
So thought the cockchafer, and put out his feelers
very proudly, on seeing a lady-bird sitting at a
little distance from him, on the stem of the rose.
What are you about here, on my rose-bush?"
cried the cockchafer; "get away with you-you
"Oh! do let me stay," said the lady-bird; "I
20 THE RETURN OF MAY.
am so little, that I cannot take up much of your
Oho !" cried the cockchafer, do you, puny,
miserable little thing, expect to live on the same
rose-bush that I patronise? Away with you!"
And he stretched forth his claws towards the
lady-bird, and flung her down.
There!" said he, I shall serve in like manner
every one that comes too near me."
He now folded up his feelers, and fell asleep.
But all on a sudden the rose-bush was shaken vio-
lently, and the cockchafer fell down on the grass,
just on the very spot where lay the lady-bird he
had dashed down.
Though stupefied by sleep, and half stunned by
his fall, he perceived two little boys standing near
Oh," thought the cockchafer, what can these
giants be, who are so much bigger than moles?"
And he felt very uneasy when the boys stooped
down, and began searching about in the grass
"Here Frank," cried the younger of the two boys,
THE RETURN OF MAY. 21
"here lies the cockchafer that we shook down
from the rose-bush. And, look! a pretty little
lady-bird is crawling beside him. Shall we take
No, Henry," said Frank, let's leave the lady-
bird where she is, for she eats up the vermin that
destroy the trees; but let's take the cockchafer
and show him to sister Klarchen."
Frank put out his hand to seize upon the cock-
What's the use of being able to fly?" thought
the cockchafer, now spreading his wings, and trying
to get away.
But, alas! it was too late! The boy had flung his
cap over him, the cockchafer was in the dark, and
he was caught.
The boys now laid him on some blades of grass
in a small box, whose lid had just a few little holes.
Ah! how scant a share of light and air reached
the poor cockchafer through those holes!
Oh!" thought the latter, "how much room,
and light, and air I had on the rose-bush, and yet
22 THE RETURN OF MAY.
I would not suffer the little lady-bird in my neigh-
bourhood! O were I but once more up there, I
shouldn't care if there were twenty lady-birds. I
wouldn't push one of them down."
The lid of the box was now taken off, and the
cockchafer saw that he was in a room overlooking
the garden. 0, how he would have liked to' have
flown away!-but the windows were shut. He
did not even venture to creep out of the box, for
several children were standing close by, and were
laying their heads together and looking at him.
So that's a cockchafer!" cried Henry's sister,
Klara, but he's not pretty. Where did you find
He was sitting on the pretty rose-bush," an-
swered Henry, "when brother Frank shook him
down, because he said the cockchafer would eat the
Do you know what?" said Fred, a little boy
THE RETURN OF MAY. 23
belonging to the neighbourhood, "we'll tie the
cockchafer to a bit of thread, and then listen to
But wont it hurt him?" asked little Klara.
"Not a bit," said the reckless Fred, "and it
will amuse us. Now fetch me a bit of thread,
As her brother Henry likewise requested her to
do so, Klara allowed herself to be persuaded, and
brought some thread.
Fred took the cockchafer out of the box, and
bound a piece of thread round his leg.
Alas," said the poor cockchafer to himself,
"of what use are now my claws? 0 how cruel
are these giants; far, far more cruel than I was to
But nobody heard his lamentations. The three
children ran frolicking with him into the garden.
Fred placed the cockchafer on. a sprig of the rose-
Alas what good did it do him now to be once
more sitting on the top of the rose-bush? For was
24 THE RETURN OF MAY.
he not a prisoner? Cruel little Fred held the thread
tight in his hand, while the children sang:
"Fly, cockchafer, fly I
At war is thy sire!
To fair Pomerania thy mammy doth hie-
Pomerania's on fire,
Fly, cockchafer, fly I"
But I won't fly," thought the cockchafer; no,
I won't oblige you by spinning round on your
And he remained quite motionless on a rosebud.
He's a long while before he begins humming,"
Stop, I'll make him fly at once," said Fred,
pulling the creature down from the rose-bush. He
then placed him on his arm, and lifting up the
brown sheaths that covered his wings, cried out
Fly, cockchafer, fly I
At war is thy sire !"
But the cockchafer dropped the sheaths over
his wings, and refused to fly.
"Fly, will you?" cried Fred, angrily, and laying
THE RETURN OF MAY. 25
hold of him so roughly by the sheaths of his
wings, that one was wrenched off. Oh how it
hurt the poor cockchafer !
Little compassionate Klara thought as much,
and her eyes were filled with tears as she said:
" O Fred, what have you done Pray set the poor
cockchafer free, and let him fly away."
But Fred had no mind to do so, and on
KlUrchen's trying to lay hold of the cockchafer,
Fred drew back the thread hastily, and in so doing
tore off the poor animal's foot.
Klara was so frightened, that she let fall the
cockchafer, who took advantage of this to fly
away. Only he was so faint from the sufferings he
had endured, that he could not fly far. He fell
to the ground, just upon a spot where the little
lady-bird was walking about on the grass blades.
Ah me !" said the cockchafer to the lady-bird,
" pray forgive me for having pushed you down
from the rose-bush. I am sufficiently punished
for it. Look at the state the cruel giants have
reduced me to."
26 THE RETURN OF MAY.
The kind lady-bird would fain have comforted
him, only he was too sorrowful and in too much
pain to be consoled. He could neither fly nor run
properly, and fretted so that he very shortly
Klrchen was not aware that the cockchafer
would die so soon, but when she saw one of his
little legs hanging to the thread, it grieved her to
the heart; and seeing her father just coming out
of the house, she ran to him and said with tears in
her eyes: 0 my dear, good papa, can you forgive
us for being such naughty children? We tied a
cockchafer to a bit of thread, and Fred has torn
off one of his wings and a leg."
Her father looked very grave, and said: O my
dear children, promise me never to do so again.
Never make playthings of live creatures, were they
even smaller than the cockchafer. And if you
ever feel tempted to do so again, think of the story
of the giant's daughter."
"But what is that story?" asked Klrchen-
pray, dear father, do tell it us."
THE RETURN OF MAY. 27
Well then, listen," said the father, sitting down
on the grass by the side of the children. And he
proceeded to relate the following droll story:-
STORY OF THE GIANT'S DAUGHTER.
The giant's infantine daughter lived with her
parents in a fine golden castle, standing on the
top of a very-very high mountain. The giant's
youthful daughter was a very large child-bigger
indeed than twenty of you put together. Her
hair was fifteen yards long, her eyes were as large
as soup plates, her mouth was like a small garden-
door, and her arms were as strong as the trunk of
And just as the giant's daughter surpassed all
other children in size, so likewise did she eat a
vast deal more than they could. At breakfast,
after draining the contents of a large pan full of
milk, into which thirty small white loaves had
been crumbled, the child used to say to its mother:
" Pray, dear mamma, give me a little more to eat."
28 THE RETURN, OF MAY.
And the kind-hearted giant-mother willingly
gave her child half a dozen manchet rolls into the
At noon the giant's daughter generally ate four
or five roast geese, or a boiled calf, besides a
caldron full of greens, and a few loaves of brown
bread. As to soup, she didn't care for it at all,
and, though her mamma often scolded her about
it, she generally sent away half a plateful of her
share. This was the only thing her parents
winked at, for, in other respects, she was trained
to obey in every minute particular, as you will
One day the parent giants were obliged to go
a long journey, and left their daughter to the care
of her nurse. But she had leave to walk in the
castle garden, and take her dolls out for an airing.
The dolls were remarkably pretty, and some of
them as large as children of five years of age.
The giant's daughter tricked them out in all their
best, and took them into the garden.
After walking up and down a few times, she
THE RETURN OF MAY. 29
began to think it tiresome, and as her nurse had
gone to sleep in the arbour, the giant's daughter
laid the dolls down on the ground, very softly,
and ran out at the garden-door, in order to look
about her a little, out abroad.
When once in the open country, she saw some-
thing moving to and fro down in the valley.
Being anxious to ascertain what it could be, she
said to herself: I must look at it a bit nearer-
that I must."
Three of her huge steps brought her into a
field below, where she saw a peasant following
a plough, drawn by two horses, and tilling the
land. The giant's daughter was pleased at this
sight, and thought: What a pretty plaything!-
I must take it away with me!"
So she knelt down, and spread out her large
apron, and, before the peasant could say Jack
Robinson," she had whipt him up, plough, horses
and all into her apron.
But the ploughman did not relish this at all,
and began hallooing and kicking.
30 THE RETURN OF MAY.
The giant's daughter then said: Be quiet, you
little mannikin, or I know what I'll give you."
And as he continued grumbling and trying to
scramble out of the apron, she did, sure enough,
give him a little tap on his head. The peasant
was frightened, and thenceforward lay quite still.
The giant's daughter then said to herself: "I
must see if I can't find some more such pretty
On going a little further she came to a water-
mill, that went click clack, click clack, while the
wheels kept turning round.
This, too, pleased the giant's daughter mightily
and she would fain have taken the whole mill
away. Only this could not be. But on per-
ceiving the miller with a heavy sack upon his
back, she thought "Well, at all events, I'll take
this pretty white puppet with me, and perhaps,
he will be able to build such another clapper-box
in our nursery."
And she whisked the miller into her apron, so that
he fell, sack and all, right upon the ploughman.
THE RETURN OF MAY. 31
Both ploughman and miller bellowed aloud, and
kicked, and plunged, and tried to get out. But
the giant's daughter gave each a pretty smart tap,
so that they were frightened, and remained quiet.
Presently the giant's daughter came to a baker's
oven, and there stood a baker just about to shove
the bread into it.
"Ho, ho !" thought she, "there's luck in odd
numbers, so I must take this little fellow with his
And she whipt the baker into her apron, where
he fell right on to the horses, while the horses fell
upon the miller, and the miller, with his heavy
sack on the ploughman. The three men in the
apron then set up a great outcry; the horses
neighed and kicked, and there was a mighty
struggling, and scrambling, and trampling amongst
Then the giant's daughter said pettishly: "I
think you wee things have quite room enough in
there, so do be quiet, or else you shall catch it."
And she gave the men and the horses a couple
of cuffs, when all lay as still as mice.
32 THE RETURN OF MAY.
When the giant's daughter returned to the
castle, she heard that her parents had arrived, and
hastened into the room to greet them, and, on
opening her apron cried out in high glee: Only
look, dear papa and mamma, what pretty live
playthings I found down in the valley. I shall
play much better with these than with my stiff,
But when her parents saw that their child was
holding a ploughman, a miller, and a baker in
her apron, mamma looked grave, and papa said:
"No, my child, you must not make playthings of
these little folks. If there were none such, you
would have neither loaves, nor rolls, nor any
meal food to eat. Carry these little fellows, in-
stantly, back to where you found them."
The giant's child did not relish this at all, and
two big tears rolled down from her huge eyes
into her apron, and drenched the ploughman,
the miller, and the baker to their skins.
But when she begged her father to give her
leave to play only just a quarter of an hour with
the live puppets, papa said sternly: "No-not for
THE RETURN OF MAY. 33
one moment shall you play with them! With
your strong arms, large hands, and heavy fingers,
you might wrench out an arm, or break the leg of
one of those little creatures-nay, perhaps split
their heads in twain! And living beings cannot
be patched up and made whole again, as your
dolls can, when you have torn or broken any part
of their bodies. Obey this instant, and carry each
back to his proper place."
The giant's daughter then perceived that her
papa was right, and did as he bid her, just as
every good child, big or little, should obey its
She carried back the ploughman, the miller,
and the baker to the places whence she had taken
them, and you may think that all three were well
satisfied to get off so easily-for it is no joke for
a human being to lie in the apron of a giant's
daughter, and receive little taps and cuffs from
her, any more than it is pleasant for a cockchafer
to be shut up in a narrow, dark box, or to have a
thread tied round his leg.
THE TWO 'FO..DLE-1,
THERE once lived two elegant little poodles, not
much larger than your fist. One of them was quite
black, and was called Blackamoor; the other, being
entirely white, was named Swansdown. Both wore
charming little red collars, with yellow buckles.
The collars were given them by the kind master
with whom they lived. He gave the little dogs
all they wanted; they had as much bread as they
could eat, and after dinner they were treated to
the best bones, on which some meat was sure to
be found. Neither did they want for water; and
they would have had milk oftener, did not the cat
lap it up before they could get at it.
Truth to say, Pussy could not endure the
poodles. She grudged them the tit-bits they
obtained from the dinner table, though, in fact,
she preferred mouse-flesh without any dressing
whatever; but, then, she was frequently too lazy
THE TWO POODLES. 35
to go a-hunting, on which occasions she would by
no means have disdained roast goose or roast veal.
Besides she was provoked at the little dogs' being
allowed to sleep on a soft carpet in their master's
room, while she was locked up in the garret,
every night, by the cook. She, therefore, would
have relished vastly scratching both poodles to
her heart's content, only she was afraid of her
master, who was so fond of these dainty little
Blackamoor and Swansdown behaved very well
to each other, and but seldom growled or pulled
one another about, and played together right frolic-
somely, making all manner of leaps, and throwing
somersets, to the great amusement of their
When they grew somewhat bigger, the gentle-
man took them every day into his room for a cer-
tain time, and taught them various tricks. They
had to learn how to stand on their hind paws, to
pick up things that were thrown down, and bring
them back to their owner, to carry a stick in their
36 THE TWO POODLES.
mouth, and to dance, beside other accomplish-
ments of the same kind.
Whichever of the two poodles shewed himself
most attentive, was stroked and caressed by their
master, and got the tit-bits, or was perhaps taken
for a walk to some fine open spot, where he was
treated to sweet milk and new white bread, and
where he could play with other dogs. But the
one who proved inattentive and clumsy, got
beaten, and was frequently obliged to fast, and to
be shut up in a dark room into the bargain.
Now this was not very agreeable, and you may
easily believe the dogs preferred eating something
nice to fasting in a dark room; still they were
often inattentive and lazy, and were punished
A DECEITFUL PUSS.
It happened one day that Swansdown, the white
poodle, had been remarkably attentive and tract-
able, while Blackamoor, the black poodle, had
been altogether as lazy and clumsy ; instead,
THE TWO POODLES. 37
therefore, of being allowed to walk with his
master, as Swansdown did, he was shut up in the
dark chamber without his afternoon's feed.
Blackamoor had whined and snarled a long
while before it occurred to him that it was of no use
since he had found it quite useless on other occa-
Just as he was making this reflection he heard
a scratching at the door, and on going up to it, he
could see through a broad chink that Puss was
And so poor, good Blackey," said she, they
have shut you up again already, have they? How
do you get on, in there, my dear Blackamoor?"
"Very badly," said the little black poodle;
" can you bring me anything to eat, dear Puss?"
"Not exactly," said Pussy; "but I pity you
with all my heart, for I have long remarked that
our master is much fonder of Swansdown than of
you, though you are so much more tractable than
It is true that I am more tractable," whined
38 THE TWO POODLES.
Blackamoor; "but why is our master fonder of
Don't you know why?" returned Puss, "then
you must be very stupid. However I'll tell you.
You see our master is fond of Swansdown because
he is as white as snow; and he dislikes you be-
cause you are black. I lately overheard him say-
ing: 'If Blackamoor doesn't soon grow white, I'll
have him flung into the water.'"
"O dear-O dear!" whined Blackamoor; am
I to be drowned because I'm black? Alack a
day! my dear Pussy, what shall I do? Can't
you help me?"
Be easy," said Pussy, I'll help you out of
the scrape, only you must not say a word to
Swansdown about it, besides bringing me your
dinner for a week to come. When that time is
over, then we will speak further on the subject;
but till then I can't do anything towards prevent-
ing the mischief that threatens you."
Blackamoor was obliged to rest content so, and
promised Pussy what she required.
THE TWO POODLES. 39
On the following day, when the two little dogs
were practising their tricks before their master,
Blackamoor was far more attentive than the day
before. Swansdown, on the contrary, was lazy and
inattentive, and so he was shut up, while Black-
amoor was allowed to take a walk with his master.
While the white poodle was whining piteously
in the dark chamber, the cat scratched at the
door, and called out through the chink: "Swans-
down, poor Swansdown, how do you fare?"
"Very badly, indeed, alas! my dear Pussy,"
quoth the poodle. "'I am hungry-can you give
me anything to eat?"
"Not exactly," said Puss; "but I'll give you a
piece of good advice. I have long regretted to
see that our master is much fonder of Blackamoor
than of you, and yet you perform your tricks
much better than he does."
"Yes, I certainly do," said Swansdown; "but
why should our master prefer Blackamore to
"L Don't you know?" said Pussy. "Why our
40 THE TWO POODLES.
master can't bear you is because you are white.
It was but yesterday that he said: If Swansdown
doesn't soon become black as a coal, as pitch, and
as a raven all put together, I'll have him flung
into the water.'"
0 la!" whined Swansdown. "Am I to be
drowned? Alack a day, my dear Pussy, what
can I do to become as black as a coal, or as pitch,
or as a raven?"
"Be easy, my little Swansdown," said Pussy,
"I'll tell you how to manage it; but you must not
say a word about it to Blackamoor, and, more-
over, you must bring me your dinner, beginning
from to-morrow, every day for a week-then I'll
stand your friend, but before that time I can do
Swansdown promised all that she required, only
entreating her, in return, to keep her promise of
And thenceforward both little dogs daily brought
Puss all the tit-bits they got from the dinner table,
and she relished them vastly.
THE TWO POODLES. 41
A PAIR OF FOOLISH DOGS.
On the seventh day, when Blackamoor brought
Puss his share of the dainties, she said: To-
morrow early, when nobody can see you, come
and meet me in the court-yard, and then I'll help
you to become white. But mind you don't fail;
for our master intends having you drowned to-
Blackamoor trembled from head to foot, and
promised he would not fail to come.
A little while after, when Swansdown brought
his food to the cat, she said: Only think, Swans-
down, to-morrow afternoon our master means to
have you drowned; but if you come secretly to
me, at an early hour, I'll put you in the way of
The frightened Swansdown promised to come, as
the other poodle had done.
Next morning, while their master had ridden
out, Blackamoor came in great haste to the cat,
who was waiting for him in the court-yard.
42 THE TWO POODLES.
Quick," said Puss, cook is just gone out, and
so you can easily be helped through your scrape.
Only go boldly into the pantry, where you'll find
a large bowl of milk and the meal-tub. If you
wish to become beautifully white, you need only
step into the bowl of milk, and bathe to your
heart's content, after which you must jump into
the meal-tub, and wallow in it till you are covered
with a thick coating of flour; then you'll be whiter
than Swansdown, and will be sure to please our
master. But make haste, and get into the pantry
before any body sees you."
And silly Blackamoor did as the cat told him.
No sooner had the black poodle left her, than
Swansdown came running along. On seeing him,
Pussy said: Quick, come along with me into our
master's room, and then I'll tell you what to do."
Swansdown followed her, and when they had
reached the room, where the master of the house
kept a number of things of different kinds, Puss
said: You see, Swansdown, here is the large ink
bottle, and near it a barrel filled with fresh black
THE TWO POODLES. 43
mould. If you want to become nice and black,
break the bottle, and bathe to your heart's content
in the ink; then jump into the barrel, and wallow
in it till you are thickly coated with mould, and
then you'll be blacker than Blackamoor, and will
be sure to please our master. Only do make haste,
lest any one should come."
After saying this, Puss ran away as fast as she
could, and foolish little Swansdown did as she had
After a while the master of the house returned
home, and whistled his dogs, and wondered why
they did not come frisking, to welcome him, as
But he called and whistled in vain; neither
Blackamoor nor Swansdown were forthcoming;-
one lay in the meal-tub, and the other in the barrel
THE STICK AND THE RIDING WHIP.
Meanwhile the cook had returned home, and
now carried the eggs and vegetables she had
44 THE TWO POODLES.
bought, into the pantry. There she perceived to
her consternation, that a quantity of milk was
spilt on the floor; and on looking into the bowl,
now only half full of dirty milk, in which some
stray hairs were floating, she thought the cat had
pounced upon the milk, and ran back in a great
rage to the kitchen, where Puss was sitting on the
Wait a bit, and you shall catch it, you nasty
greedy cat, you,"-and, taking up a stick, cook
fell to belabouring Pussy, who had never expected
any thing of the kind.
The cat mewed as piteously as she could, but
it was of no use; she was obliged to take the
sound drubbing that was given her.
And how fared it with stupid Blackamoor?
We shall presently see.
When the cook had belaboured Pussy to her
heart's content, she returned into the pantry. She
was going to make some dumplings, and in her
fright at seeing the milk spilt, she had forgotten
she wanted some flour. When she now came to
THE TWO POODLES. 45
put a spoon into the meal tub, she felt something
hard, and, thinking it was a piece of wood, seized
hold of it with her hand. But all of a sudden she
uttered a scream; for Blackamoor, being fright-
ened, had bit her finger slightly.
On hearing her scream, all the household rushed
to her assistance; and the master, not being afraid
of any thing, thrust his hand boldly into the meal
tub, and finished by pulling out the little black
poodle; only, as he was quite encrusted with flour,
nobody could tell at first whether it was Blacka-
moor or Swansdown, nor did his black coat be-
come visible, till after his master, in his exaspera-
tion, had given him a good shaking.
Seeing Blackamoor tremble all over with fright,
his master took pity on him, and ordered him to
be well washed and brushed, till his black fur was
all shining again.
"I'll let you off this time," said his master,
because you've had a good fright, you silly little
fellow. Butwhere in the world can Swansdown be ?"
They now looked every where for the white
46 THE TWO POODLES.
poodle, and at last the master of the house went
into his room.
The first thing he perceived was the broken ink
bottle, in which there remained but little ink; the
rest had dried up on the floor; besides which, the
curtains and some of the chairs were stained with
As the poodles had never before knocked down
or broken any article, the gentleman concluded
the cat had done the mischief.
So he snatched up his riding whip, and looked
for Puss, whose back was still smarting from the
blows the cook had given her; but the gentleman
knew nothing about that, and gave her a sound
whipping. And thus she received a double allow-
ance of stripes-a fit punishment for her lies and
deceit; and she said to herself in her sorrow: In
future I'll leave the poodles alone."
When the gentleman had given her as much as
he thought necessary, he returned to his room,
where he saw something stirring in the barrel. On
going to see what was the matter, he presently
THE TWO POODLES. 47
drew out Swansdown, who looked woefully dirty,
and began to whine in his fright, as if to ask his
You stupid little fellow," said his master,
"how in the world did you get in there? A pretty
business, indeed! You must be shorn, for neither
soap nor water would ever get those ink spots out
of your coat."
And Swansdown was obliged to put up with
this necessity as patiently as need be.
Both he and Blackamoor were glad to be let off
so cheaply, and perceiving now that the cat had
deceived them, they determined never again to
believe what she said.
"We'll try, instead, to be very attentive and
obedient," said Blackamoor to Swansdown, "and
then our master will always be fond of us, and it
will certainly be all the same to him that I should
have a black coat and you a white one."
And they did as they said, and grew such
learned and clever dogs, as to become the delight
of their master.
LITTLE MAX AN 3 MWS WOMY BOX.,
THERE was once a little boy, named Max, who
lived with his parents, by whom he was most ten-
derly loved. They gave him all he wanted-
breakfast, dinner and supper, to say nothing of
treating him frequently to cakes and other nice
things. Besides which, he had as many play-
things as he could wish, and pretty clothes in
abundance. In winter he had a warm little cloak,
boots lined with fur, a smart cap, and mittens, so
that he had no need to be frozen with cold when
he went out with his father.
In addition to all this, Max had a little sister
and a big brother, an uncle, an aunt, and a grand-
mother, and as he was docile and well behaved,
all his relations loved him, and often made him
presents of nice pastry, as well as of playthings.
On one of his birth-days, his grandmother gave
him an earthen money-box, painted in bright
LITTLE MAX AND HIS MONEY BOX. 49
colours. It had a long, narrow slit at the top,
through which money could be slipped in, but as
to getting it out again, that was not to be accom-
plished without breaking the box in pieces. His
kind grandmother flung in a silver florin; his uncle,
aunt, and mother added a variety of silver and
copper coins, and whenever Max was particularly
good, he was sure to receive contributions to his
money-box from several of his relations. In a
short time he had a quantity of kreutzers,* sech-
sers, zwanzigers, florins, and other coins; and on
one occasion, when he wished his grandmother
joy on her birth-day, in a very pretty manner, she
flung as much as a golden ducat into his box.
Max often rattled the money about, and was
highly delighted at his riches. Only look,
Louisa," said he one day to his sister, when my
"* For the information of our little readers, we may as well
state that the worth of a kreutzer is the third part of an English
penny; that of the sechser, about an English halfpenny; while
the zwanziger is worth eight pence. A German florin is equiva-
lent to two shillings.
50 LITTLE MAX AND HIS MONEY BOX.
money-box is full, I shall break it and get grand-
mamma to buy me a much larger one, into which
I'll put all my money, and what more ay get
in time." "o.
But when the new money-box is full-h ow
then?" asked little Louisa. O," replied Max,
" then I'll break it again, and buy a still larger one,
which will hold a great quantity of money. And
then, when that one is full, I'll buy one a great
deal bigger-aye, as big as the church tower."
WHAT THE MONEY DID.
At night, before going to bed, Max again rattled
his money-box in high glee. Then after he had
said his prayers, and got into bed, his mother gave
him a kiss and wished him good night, and took
away the candle. But as the moon peeped through
the window, the room was still quite light. Max
gave a last look at his money-box, that was stand-
ing very quietly on the window-sill, and then fell
asleep. But in a few minutes he was woke by a
LITTLE MAX AND HIS MONEY BOX. 51
loud noise, which aSuiedjust as if somebody
were rattling 4ee ;i^ie
"Heturned his Vea awards the windo And
sure enough heoj fhtard it quite plainly. Dinu,
dong, dlin.--lprbceedo from the box, as if the
money wvei lt .iipiln about inside it. Ding, do ,
ding! soundc.d,.lohu/ e and louder, and he .\'
heard, quieittirjIlplv-, the following words:
I f Din', .1..!g, ding,
/ .* :' '-' nt!.u thing!
Dong, ding, dong, /
We've lain here too long.
Di*r, dong, ding,
-ri.ut, earthen thing!"
Can the coins in the money-box have said
that?" thought Max, much surprised; when sud-
denly a gruff voice answered:-" Be quiet, do, with
your ding-donging. I mustn't burst. What would
little Max say?"
The money-box said that," thought Max, and
kept listening, while the money called out louder
52 LITTLE MAX AND HIS MONEY BOX.
"Dong, ding, dong,
We've lain here too long.
Ding, dong, ding,
Burst, earthen thing."
"But I won't!" answered the box, "so don't
bother me with your noise!" Burst with vexa-
tion-do!" said the money, calling out louder and
"Ding, dong, ding,
Burst, earthen thing."
All of a sudden, bang it went, and what a
crash there was, to be sure! The money-box had
fallen from the window-sill, and was broken right
through; the coins rolled about awhile along the
floor, and then all lay quiet. Max did not venture
to stir, but remained motionless, on hearing how
the Ducat began to talk.
How nice it is," said the latter, "to have got
out of that narrow box. How stupid little Max
must be to have shut us up in it."
Yes, surely," answered a bright Florin, Max
must be stupid, indeed, to let us lie idle in that
LITTLE MAX AND HIS MONEY BOX. 53
manner-for only think! This very day I heard
our neighbour's son Fritz saying that there's a fair
out abroad, where one can buy the prettiest things,
such as guns, swords, drums, hobby-horses, and
books full of pretty pictures; besides tremendously
huge gingerbread troopers, that taste so nice!"
H'm!" thought Max, who listened attentively,
" I have plenty of swords, guns, and drums, and
I'm not so childish as to buy a hobby-horse-O,
no-I'm too big for that sort of thing! But I have
long wished for a new picture-book, and a ginger-
bread trooper is not to be sneezed at either!"
WHERE THE MONEY WENT.
The coins now began talking again, and a silver
Zwanziger said:-" What say you? Shall we lie
here till the little blockhead wakes?"
"A likely story, indeed!" cried an old six
Kreutzer piece; why Max would only shut us
up again. We must all be off before sun-rise."
And whither will you go?" asked the Ducat;
54 LITTLE MAX AND HIS MONEY BOX.
" as I am the most eminent amongst you, I think
you may as well tell me what you intend doing."
0, I know where I'll go," said a copper
Kreutzer. They were talking yesterday in this
house of a good girl who is often in want. Emma,
for such is her name, lives with her weak and
aged grandmother, and though she is herself but
thirteen years old, she sews and knits till late at
night, to earn bread for herself and the old dame,
besides having to attend on her grandmother,
and to wash clothes, and do the household work.
So poor Emma cannot earn much, and as she
always provides for her grandmother first, it often
happens she has not enough money to buy herself
a bit of bread for breakfast, to say nothing of shoes
or clothes. But as industrious Emma is always
the first stirring in the household, I'll go now and
lie down on her threshold, and when she comes
out early to fetch water, she'll be sure to find
I'll go with you," said a second Kreutzer,
while some others said:-" We'll go too. We'll all
LITTLE MAX AND HIS MONEY BOX. 55
lie down near poor Emma's threshold, and when
she finds us she'll certainly carry us to the baker's,
to buy bread for herself and grandmamma."
That's very pretty of you," said a twenty
Kreutzer piece, the same that had called Max a
blockhead not long before; very pretty, indeed!
And though you are only copper, I don't mind
accompanying you, to lie in front of the girl's
threshold. Perhaps some others will join us?"
We will join you," cried three silver Zwan-
zigers; "we are not proud, nor are we at all
ashamed to herd with copper Kreutzers, particu-
larly when we can bring joy to good, industrious
Emma. If she finds us, she will be able to buy
a pair of new shoes, or a petticoat for the winter."
I am pleased with you !" said the grand Ducat.
" But what are the others going to do?"
"I know what I'll do," said a somewhat dirty
but very good silver Florin. "I am truly sorry
for this poor, industrious girl, but I heard talk of
"a poor man, whom I pity still more. This man is
"a journeyman, with a wife and four little children.
56 LITTLE MAX AND HIS MONEY BOX.
His wife and the youngest child have been ill
for the last year, and work as hard as he may, he
cannot earn enough to purchase the necessary
food and physic. The poor children are in rags,
and often suffer from cold and hunger, while the
father himself grows weaker daily, from so much
hard work. So I intend to go and place myself
in his drawer-and only think how pleased he'll
be when he finds me."
"A sick wife, and four little children!" said
another Florin; I'll go with you."
So will I-and I-and I,"-cried some more
If you will allow us," cried several six Kreut-
zer pieces, we'll go with you. A poor man in
want of bread and clothes for his children, will
not turn up his nose at us."
I, too, should like to accompany you," said
another six Kreutzer piece, that had hitherto
remained silent, only I heard tell, a few days
ago, of something that takes me away in another
direction. You must know that there lives, not far
LITTLE MAX AND HIS MONEY BOX. 57
from here, a poor widow, with an only son who is
six years old, and whose name is Emil. Now as
Emil has no father, his mother is obliged to work
all day for other people. Emil knows how his
good mother toils and frets, and would so like to
do anything to give her pleasure, that he has looked
out a couple of pretty flowers at a gardener's, to
present her on her birthday. But the man requires
a florin for the plants, and so the good boy secretly
saves the price of his breakfast roll every morning.
And he has done this so long, that only six kreut-
zers are wanting to complete the florin, and there-
fore I intend to slip into the box in which he keeps
"You are all of you very worthy," said the
Ducat, and I don't regret having stayed a long
while in your company. But now learn what I
intend doing. I lived formerly with a rich and
benevolent lady, who built a house for poor orphan
children, where they are furnished with all that
they want-clothes, nourishment, and education.
This kind, rich woman, who gave away all her
58 LITTLE MAX AND HIS MONEY BOX.
money for so excellent a purpose, now goes about
to all houses inhabited by rich children, to collect
money for the poor orphans. So I shall go to
her, for being of gold and of high value, I must
therefore make more people happy, than you small
fry of florins, zwanzigers, sechsers, and kreutzers.
Moreover, if there be any left amongst you, who
have not yet decided where to go to, I'll take them
under my wing, and guide them to this excellent
and benevolent lady's money-box."
All those who had not hitherto spoken, now ex-
Yes, we'll be of the party, and we feel highly
honoured by going with you."
And away they rolled towards the gold piece.
WHAT LITTLE MAX DID.
Only one Dollar and a silver Grosh, that had like-
wise been hitherto silent, remained lying quietly
on the floor, and when the Ducat enquired:-
" What do you mean to do?" the Dollar answered:
LITTLE MAX AND HIS MONEY BOX. 59
"-" Little Max, it is true, shut us up for a long
while, but after all he did it only out of love for
us, and so I shall remain with him."
"Rightly thought!" cried the silver Grosh; I
am of the same opinion-and I shall stay too !"
Humph! with all my heart," said the Ducat;
"there let them lie, and do you others come
Clink-clink-clink! was then heard, and all
flew towards the window, and with a whirr-
whirr-whirr-all dashed through the pane.
On the following morning, when Max opened
his eyes, he saw his little sister Louisa standing
by his bedside. She clasped her hands, saying:
" Only think! a window pane is broken, and the
money-box is broken to pieces. Look- there lie
the pieces on the floor, and of all the money there
is nothing to be seen but a dollar and a silver
grosh. How can it all have happened?"
I'll tell you, dear Loo," answered Max; the
money didn't choose to remain with me any longer,
so it flew through the window. But it does not
60 LITTLE MAX AND HIS MONEY BOX.
matter. For now the poor industrious girl will
be able to buy bread and a pair of shoes, and the
poor day-labourer clothes, physic and food, for his
sick wife and children. Good Emil will now be
able to buy flower-pots for his mother, and the
benevolent lady will be able to give presents to
the orphan children. And as the dollar and the
silver grosh were good enough to stay with me, I
won't shut them up any more. With the dollar
I'll buy two picture books, one for me and the
other for you, Looey. And with the silver grosh
I'll get a large gingerbread trooper, which I'll
divide with our neighbour's son Fritz. And if
grandmamma or any body else gives me any more
money, I'll carry it myself to the people who have
no bread, nor wood, nor clothing. And then the
money won't have to burst through the panes, and
make such a riot as to hinder my sleeping."
THIE F-LOVVEN fA;DAEd
THERE once lived two pretty little sisters, named
Hedwig and Gertrude, whose parents had a beau-
tiful flower garden at the back of the house, where
they allowed the children to play in fine weather.
This was a great enjoyment to the little girls,
especially to Hedwig, who took much delight in
flowers, and was fond of tending them. Thus
when the weather was dry, and the flowers were
thirsty, she hastened to take up her little watering
pot and water them. She would carefully cut the
withered flowers from off the stalks, that fresh
buds might come forth, and when any of those
which blossomed on the fragile and delicate stems,
hung their little heads, she would give them a
small staff for a prop. She had also learnt from
the old gardener, how to distinguish a number of
weeds that belong to no flower garden, and have
62 THE FLOWER GARDEN.
only slunk in to drive the pretty flowers out of
Hedwig would root out such as these, saying:
" Where you are, my flowers won't grow. You
might have remained in the fields, which are your
proper place, and where you'd have had room
enough. But you must turn out from here, and
I can't help you."
And when Hedwig took a walk with her mother,
and saw a number of wild flowers in the fields and
meadows, she was pleased, and would say: Now
that's all right-you look very lovely here; but
do remain in your proper place, and don't come
into our flower garden, or else you must die."
The field flowers minded what she said, and it
was but seldom they came into Hedwig's garden;
while the garden flowers, on their part, observed
how good Hedwig was to them, and how carefully
she tended them. And whenever she went through
the garden, all the flowers bowed their heads to
greet her, and smelt twice as sweet as they
THE FLOWER GARDEN. 63
Now, if on one hand flowers remark when they
are loved and tended, they also perceive when they
are badly treated, and consequently they could
not bear Hedwig's younger sister Gertrude. They
would have forgiven her for not tending them or
ministering to their wants, but that Gertrude
should roughly strip the loveliest blossoms off
their stalks by handfuls, merely for the sake of
picking them to pieces and flinging them into the
dust-this was what the remaining flowers on the
same stems could not forgive.
Once when Gertrude had broken from off a
rosebush, a whole sprig richly laden with buds,
and after stripping the leaves off part of these
tender buds had flung the rest away, the largest
Rose that was blooming on the rosebush said: I
can no longer bear to see so many of our sisters
dying thus miserably, through this naughty girl's
fault. We flowers are not disobliging, but like to
give pleasure to human beings as often as we can.
We all agree-do we not ?-that we don't mind
when the amiable Hedwig plucks a nosegay out of
64 THE FLOWER GARDEN.
love for her mother, and preserves it all day in
cool water-for should we not be grateful to human
beings for tending us, and willing to ornament
their rooms ? But they must not treat us as that
cruel Gertrude does, and I propose that we should
punish so naughty a girl."
Yes, yes, we will," cried all the flowers; and
a young Orange Lily, as yet still folded up as a
bud, cried out with great animation: "I should
like to be of the party!"
"But how can we punish her ?" asked a little
Violet; "I know of no other way than to conceal
myself deeper still under the grass, so that she
shouldn't find a single bud."
Oh !" sighed the Larkspur "if I had but an
iron or a silver spur, like the knights of old, then
indeed I'd give it her nicely when she came to tear
I'll punish her without the help of a spur,"
said an old Balsam, who had lost some of her
leaves; "if she comes near to us, let some of us open
our capsules, and let fly our seeds into wicked
THE FLOWER GARDEN. 65
Gertrude's face, so that she will fancy she has
received a discharge of small shot."
I, too, know what I'll do," said the Orange
Lily bud; but I won't tell you yet, that you may
have the surprise."
I, too, have thought of a punishment," said a
blue Iris, I haven't my sharp, sword-like leaves
Unfortunately I haveonly soft leaves," said a
Convolvulus, whose tendrils were climbing up a
little arbour; "still I'll punish her as well as I
And won't I, too!" said the Rose, growing
redder still with anger.
And she shall have cause to remember me, I
promise you!" cried the Golden-rod.
I don't know how to punish," said the White
Lily, mildly; but if you intend, some day, to re-
ward the amiable Hedwig in a suitable manner,
then I'll be with you."
"That we would willingly do," cried all the
flowers. "But how shall we set about it ?"
66 THE FLOWER GARDEN.
We'll think of something pretty," said the
Lily; but the sun is so hot just now, suppose we
take a nap?"
And if you want to know what more the flowers
contrived when they woke from their slumber,
you must wait till to-morrow, and you shall hear.
HOW FLOWERS DISTRIBUTE PUNISHMENT
On the very day the flowers had formed the
resolution of punishing Gertrude, and rewarding
Hedwig, the two sisters had some little friends to
During the noontide heat, the children played
in doors, but when it grew a little cooler, Mamma
allowed them to go into the garden.
Gertrude ran out at once with their youthful
guests, while Hedwig remained behind to put the
Pray, dear Gertrude," said little Annie, the
youngest of the childish visitors, "pluck me just a
THE FLOWER GARDEN. 67
small nosegay, to take to my sick brother who
can't come out."
When the flowers heard this, the Rose said: I
am willing that we should be taken to the little
invalid. But Gertrude shall not pluck the nose-
gay. She shall be punished-that's flat!"
Agreed!" muttered all the flowers, raising
their heads in a threatening manner as Gertrude
Oh! Annie," said Gertrude, "I'll pluck you
as many flowers as you like. We have plenty of
that sort of rubbish, and as it is for you, Mamma
won't be angry."
And at a single bound, the reckless girl was on
"We have Violets, too," added she, stooping down.
But the Violets had hid themselves long ago-
and not a single one was to be seen. Gertrude
tore up the green leaves in a pet, and picked them
Never mind," said she, there are plenty of
68 THE FLOWER GARDEN.
And away she flew to the Orange Lilies.
But just as she bent down, and was about to
pluck a couple of the prettiest, one of the ripe buds
suddenly unfurled its leaves, and imprinted a tre-
mendous pair of mustachios on the little girl's face,
with its yellow pollen.
O Gertrude, how funny you look," said the
other children, laughing heartily.
Gertrude tried to wipe off the yellow marks,
but only made them worse, while the girls laughed
till she grew quite angry.
Thereupon the eldest, named Bertha, said:
" Don't be angry, dear Gertrude, we'll wash off
these nasty marks with water."
Then little Annie said, entreatingly: Do go for
some Balsams, dear Gertrude; they are so beauti-
fully red and white, and they are sure not to smear
For what I care," said Gertrude, I'd pluck
them all for you."
And she hastened to the Balsams, but on stoop-
ing down to them, all the ripe capsules opened,
THE FLOWER GARDEN. 69
and a heap of small, round seeds flew into the
"What do the stupid flowers ail to-day?" cried
she, in a passion; and off she ran to the little
arbour, round which the Convolvulus threw its
Down with you !" cried the reckless child
roughly tearing away the wreathing tendrils. But
she had reckoned without her host. The tendrils
coiled round her hands and bound her fast. The
more Gertrude tried to get loose, the more she
Bertha! Emma! Annie !" cried she, piteously,
come here, and let me loose !"
The girls, who had meantime been looking at
the other flowers, now flocked towards her. They
could scarcely conceal their laughter, when they
saw that Gertrude could not get loose from the
Convolvulus, for they thought it was the girl's
It really looks as if the flowers could not bear
you," said Emma, with a low titter, when the
70 THE FLOWER GARDEN.
others had at length set Gertrude free. None of
them will have anything to do with you, and
something happens with every one you touch."
What nonsense you are talking," said Ger-
trude, fretfully; "stop a bit; I'll go for some
Irises, and bring you as many as you like."
And off she ran towards them, but scarcely had
she snatched at the flowers in haste, when their
sharp, broad leaves aimed at her right hand, and
cut her finger. It hurt her very much, and Ger-
trude would have screamed aloud, had she not
been ashamed to do so within hearing of the
other children, who had stayed behind.
She then abandoned the lilies, and hastened
towards the Rose-bush. Instead of her usual im-
petuous haste, she put out her left hand very cau-
tiously, to gather the finest Rose, but soon drew
back her hand, for the thorns pricked it so sadly
that it bled.
As the other children had just gone to meet
Hedwig, Gertrude tried to stifle the violent pain
she felt, and wept noiselessly, as she crept towards
THE FLOWER GARDEN. 71
"This has neither sharp leaves nor thorns,"
thought she, and I'll pluck a little sprig for
Annie, or the other children will think me awk-
ward at it."
But on her endeavouring to grasp a sprig, the
rest bent down and rapped her hands so smartly,
that she uttered a loud scream.
The four girls flew to her help in great alarm,
and on seeing Gertrude's bleeding fingers, inquired
with much interest what had happened, and some
of them ran to the fountain to fetch some cool
When Hedwig had placed a cooling bandage on
her sister's fingers, Gertrude sobbed out:-" I only
wanted to gather a nosegay for Annie's sick
brother, but flowers are such nasty, naughty
things, that I won't have anything more to do
Why, flowers are such sweet things, they never
hurt anybody," said Hedwig, "if one does but
pluck them carefully. Come, Annie, you shall
have a pretty little nosegay."
The children now followed Hedwig, and Ger-
72 THE FLOWER GARDEN.
trude slunk behind them. When they came near
the Violets, Hedwig stooped down, and behold! a
tender little bud unfolded its leaves, and seemed
to smile so sweetly at the little girl, just as if it
had said:-" I am willing to let you pluck me."
And Hedwig did pluck it sure enough.
They next went to the Orange-Lilies, when the
youngest and prettiest pressed forward, and let
itself be gathered. It was the same with the
Balsams, the Convolvuluses, the Rosebush, the
Golden-rods, the Irises, and all the others that
Hedwig plucked. Last of all she gathered a
delicate white Lily, saying :-" Now there's
The girls then sat down on the grass, and Hed-
wig spread the flowers on her lap, to make them
up into a nosegay, when lo! quite suddenly the
Convolvulus stretched forth its tendrils, and twined
itself first round the Lily, next round the Rose,
then round the other flowers, and in a trice all
were woven into an elegant wreath. This took
place so quickly that the children did not know
THE FLOWER GARDEN. 73
what to think. But how great was their surprise
when the wreath rose up softly, and placed itself
on Hedwig's little curly head. It was a lovely
sight. Her three friends jumped up, and taking
each other by the hand, danced about with shouts
Flowers, love you !" cried Emma.
They adorn you in return for your tending
them," said Bertha.
But little Annie, recollecting a pretty game,
began to sing:-
Tell us who the wreath shall wear!
The wreath so rare
Who shall wear?"
And the two others answered:-
"Our Hedwig, she the wreath shall wear-
Our Hedwig fair
The wreath shall wear "
Gertrude looked on sorrowfully, and somewhat
ashamed. She had at last found out that the
flowers did not like her, and you may easily think
that she changed her ways thenceforward.
THE BUTCH OF REYS.
MAMMA," said little Lizzy one day, when
shall I have the bunch of keys, and lock and
unlock everything, like sister Emily-and go to
the store room and cellar, and all the cupboards
Why, you little goose," answered her mother,
" do you expect to be trusted with the keys like
your elder sister, when you are not quite six years
But I'm tall now," said Lizzy standing on
tiptoe-" I can reach up to the latch, and can
open and shut the door all alone."
You foolish little thing," resumed her mother,
" do you think there's nothing to be done but to
lock and unlock? Emily has the keys of all the
rooms and boxes and cupboards, that she may be
able to keep them tidy, and all the things in them
in good order."
THE BUNCH OF KEYS. 75
But is that so very difficult?" asked Lizzy.
Not so very difficult for a good, industrious
girl, like our Emily-yet not quite so easy, my
child, as you seem to fancy."
The little one turned up her nose, and would
not believe what her mamma said, when the latter
added playfully: Well Lizzy, we'll see about it,
and when you have been good and diligent for a
long while, then I'll give you a pretty hook, with
a great many keys upon it."
Mamma then went out, for she had no time to
chat any longer with the little girl. And Lizzy
thought: It will be very pretty, when I once get
the keys, and I shall be sure to keep everything
in much better order than Emily."
When Lizzy lay in her little bed that night, she
could not get to sleep at first. For Emily had a
light in the adjoining room, and Lizzy saw and
heard her sister bustling about, with her bunch
of keys, and putting out all sorts of things for the
next day-clean linen, clothes, coffee and sugar
for breakfast, and so forth.
76 THE BUNCH OF KEYS.
When Emily came at last into the chamber,
and saw Lizzy lying with her eyes wide open, she
gave her a hearty kiss, then placed her bunch of
keys on a small table beside her bed, and after
putting out the light, laid down to rest.
Lizzy, on her part, stretched herself in her little
bed, and was about to shut her eyes, when all at
once she heard a noise proceeding from the 9ppo-
site side of the room where stood Emily's bed.
The little girl listened, and heard a low rattling of
keys, which however, presently grew louder. The
chamber was now suddenly lit up, though whether
by the moonshine or the street .l1mp, she could
not tell-but this much was certain, that on look-
ing towards Emily's little tale, she plainly saw
the bunch of keys dancing about upon it, with the
most ridiculous antics, and a loud clatter withall.
Yet in the midst of all the noise, a voice as clear
as silver, was distinctly heard, saying:
Ye keys are free."
Scarcely were these words spoken, than the
THE BUNCH OF KEYS. 77
keys suddenly loosened themselves from the silver
hook, on which they were hung, and capered about
separately on the table. It was probably the hook,
which lay quietly on the table, that had spoken
the above words, for no sooner did the keys begin
making a noise once more, than the astonished
Lizzy again heard it say, in the same clear voice:
All silent be "
"Ay," thought the little girl "that's just the
way in our school-it need oniy addl:
"Put your hands on the t.il-,
SHold your tongues if i''l- able."
But though the silver hoo4 did not add these
words +the keys were more obedient than the
chil ren in Lizzy's schogY, for they all lay quietly
in a row on the table, and did not move. When
all were as till as mice, the hook again raised its
voice, and said:
"I am of silver-you of steel,
Therefore I order ev'ry one
Who can contribute to our mirth and fun,
To tell a story for the general weal."
78 THE BUNCH OF KEYS.
At this command the keys again began to rattle,
and each wanted to speak first, so that the hook
was obliged to interfere once more and say:
"One, two, three,
Hushed be this din 1
All orderly be-
Let the biggest begin."
WHAT THE KEYS TALK ABOUT.
Well then, I must make a beginning," said a
thick old key, with a round head, "for nobody
will deny that I am the biggest, and have the most
considerable bit of any of you. Besides I am the
highest in rank of the whole lot, being the key of
You are right so far as bigness and thickness
has anything to do with it," said a little key with
a heart-shaped head, but in other respects I can
vie with you. 1 am the key of the linen closet,
and preserve the clean, ironed linen, while you
only keep the soiled linen, besides old rubbish-
that makes a wondrous difference."
THE BUNCH OF KEYS. 79
Before the garret key could answer, the hook
One, two, three,
No foolery "
"Very well," said the garret key, I don't much
care if I am somewhat envied on account of my
exalted station-besides I have more important
things to discuss just now."
Then speak out at once," cried the other keys.
Thereupon the garret key began: It is quite
true, is it not, that we are all satisfied with our
With Miss Emily ? cried the key of the linen
closet,-" I should think so, indeed! There are
few girls so tidy and industrious as she is. She
keeps the closet I lock up in such order as might
serve for a pattern. All the linen placed there is
neat, smooth and clean, and not one piece is torn."
Lizzy had listened in great surprise, which grew
greater still, when all the keys spoke in turn, one
after another, and each had something to say in
praise of Emily.
80 THE BUNCH OF KEYS.
The key of the writing desk maintained that
she was very clever at accounts and writing; the
key of the china closet praised her care; the key
of the store room thought a great deal of her not
being a sweet-tooth, while a very small key
belonging to a box in which some money was
always treasured up for the poor, praised the zeal
with which good-hearted Emily gave alms. What
the somewhat crooked and rusty key of the cellar
liked best about her, was her not being too proud
to go into the cellar and fetch potatoes, and lastly
the garret key said it was, after all, no wonder if
she often went up to the garret, which was so airy
and roomy, neither of which qualities could be
expected-(glancing contemptuously at the key of
the linen closet)-of either cupboards or chests.
"But what's the use of all this?" added the
huge key. The worst is that we are about to
lose this excellent mistress of ours! and do you
know who is to replace her ? Why a little
whipper-snapper chit not so tall as three cheeses
-little five-year-old Lizzy!"
THE BUNCH OF KEYS. 81
"That's too bad of him," thought the little
listener, "for Iam five and three-quarters of a year
old." But she turned hot and flushed with vexa-
tion when the other keys now exclaimed: "What!
is that little presumptuous, ill-bred Lizzy to be-
come our mistress? That would be dreadful!"
"Dreadful! dreadful!" echoed the garret key.
"Yet I heard the lady of the house speaking of
it this very day."
"Nay!" cried the key of the writing desk, "it
cannot and shall not be! Never would such a
disgrace have been put upon us before. Only
think! the silly little thing does not even know
what is the half of four. She can scarcely write
her name, and all the letters she forms are crooked,
lame, and humpbacked."
"Besides," added the hitherto silent key of the
bookcase, "though it really is scarcely believable-
yet she actually cannot even read. At least it is im-
possible ever to understand a word of what she is
reading. Oh! sooner than belong to such a dunce
as that, I'd hide myself in a mouse-hole."
82 THE BUNCH OF KEYS.
You are quite right," said the key of the little
box-" still I'd forgive Lizzy her ignorance, as she
is so little, if she had but a compassionate heart.
Now, just listen. She was sitting one evening
lately before the house door, and eating a piece of
white bread and a large apple, when there came
along a poor child, who begged her to give her
just a little bit of bread-which you would, of
course, suppose she did. But no such thing! The
naughty girl sent the hungry child packing, and
ate every bit up herself."
0 how ashamed was little Lizzy on hearing what
the key said! For the story was quite true, and
she had afterwards bitterly repented not having
given the poor child a morsel. She wondered how
the keys came to know all about it, and tears ran
down her cheeks. But she was to hear more still.
Indeed," said the store-room key, Lizzy is
and ever will be a greedy little puss. If she has
a couple of apples, and her little brother only one,
she gobbles up hers in hot haste, and then coaxes
the little fellow into giving her some of his. Her
THE BUNCH OF KEYS. 83
mother never ventures to leave the sugar-canister
within her reach; and as to the fruit in the garden,
she would fain pluck it before it is ripe. Ay!
she'd manage things nicely, if she once got hold of
me. There would be a fine havoc of raisins,
almonds, pears and plums! She'd poke her five
fingers all at once into the jam pots, and cram her-
self with tarts till she'd fall ill at the end of a
couple of days."
"I should not expect any good of her, either,"
said the key of the linen closet. She would only
leave everything at sixes and sevens in my closet.
She hardly has the patience or the skill to knit a
single row of her stocking. She lets the stitches
fall every minute, or breaks the knitting needles;
nor can she even make her doll an apron, or hem
her a neckerchief. Then how should she be able
to mend linen and darn stockings?"
Nor do I want to have anything to do with
such a hare-brained thing as little Lizzy," said the
china closet key. It was but lately that she had
to carry her father's cup only from one room into
84 THE BUNCH OF KEYS.
another, but instead of walking properly, and
minding how she went, she must needs peep out
of window, when she stumbled, and letting fall the
elegant cup, out of which her father was so fond
of drinking, it broke to shivers."
Ah! it is not she who would condescend to
have anything to do with me," whispered the
modest key of the cellar. The day before yes-
terday, she was bid to carry a small basket of
salad from the garden into the kitchen. And how
she grumbled! Nay, if she had not been afraid of
her mother's scolding her, she would have flung
the basket down. Is she likely ever to go into the
cellar and fetch potatoes?"
Oh! not she. She wouldn't even go to the
garret," said the large key, "although it is so airy
and so roomy, and one has the pleasantest look out
over the neighbours' gardens. Not that I want
her there, the least in the world, and if we all agree
not to have her for our mistress"-
No, we won't have her by any means" cried
all the keys with a loud rattle.
THE BUNCH OF KEYS. 85
"Well, then, listen to what I propose," said the
garret key. "As soon as she touches us, let us
rap her fingers smartly. Are you willing?"
Agreed!" cried they all, even down to the key.
of the writing desk, that called out in the midst of
the hubbub: "I have a still better proposal to
Let's hear," cried some of the keys.
We'll go up to her bed, and give her at once
a rap across her fingers, and then she'll cease to
think of touching us at all."
Alas! how Lizzy quaked with shame and vexa-
tion, while listening to this whole conversation!
She crept under the bed clothes, crying with terror,
and heard nothing more, except the voice of the
One, two, three,
You keys come back to me!"
86 THE BUNCH OF KEYS.
On a sudden she felt some one stroking her wet
cheeks, and on looking up, there stood sister Emily
beside her bed, who kissed her, saying: "What
are you crying for, my little Lizzy? Have you
had a naughty dream? "
"No, no," sobbed the little one, casting an un-
easy glance around-" but the keys-Oh! those
"What do you want with them?" asked her
sister; "here they are." And sure enough Emily
had the keys with their silver hook hanging to her
waistband, and the chatterers were looking as de-
mure as if they didn't know that two and two
"Ah! I must tell you," said the still weeping
Lizzy, what the nasty keys said to-night about
me-and I don't want them, not I, and I will never
in my life become their mistress! But dear Emily,
I'll be as good and industrious as you are, and then
they'll speak better of me."
,THE BUNCH OF KEYS. 87
Emily did not at first understand what the little
one meant; but.when the child had told her all,
she said: It is very likely, Lizzy, that you may
have dreamt it all, but as you know best that the
keys said nothing untrue about you, why you had
better lay their words to your heart, and become a
good, amiable child."
And so Lizzy did from that day forward. She
never again sent a poor child away without any
alms, and she became more careful and industrious,
and more attentive to her reading, writing and
arithmetic. And whenever she felt a hankering
after sweets, she remembered the words of the
store-room key, and said: No, no, Lizzy won't
be a greedy little puss, and won't make herself
sick with sweetmeats."
Her sixth birthday now came round. How
surprised and overjoyed was she on coming into
the sitting room that morning, to behold the
prettiest baby house that can be imagined. For
it was not merely an ordinary doll's room, but a
regular house, almost as tall as a table. One
88 THE BUNCH OF KEYS.
hardly could think it was made of pasteboard only,
it looked so exactly as if it were built of real bricks,
and covered with real tiles.
This pretty little house contained two elegant
rooms, a kitchen completely fitted up, besides a
cellar and a garret-six steps leading down to the
former, and six others up to the latter. In the
rooms there were not only beds, sofas, chairs,
tables and looking glasses, but nice little closets,
an elegant writing table, and a little money coffer,
as large as a sugar box. Besides its range, the
kitchen was provided with closets for all sorts of
cooking utensils and earthen vessels, and the pantry
was very near at hand.
But the most remarkable thing was, that all the
closets, little table drawers, and little chests, as
well as the store-room, the garret, and the cellar,
were locked fast. In the largest room, however,
on an easy sofa, sat a most beautiful doll, almost
as big as a child a year old. She had real hair,
that curled very nicely, and wore a simple morning
dress, with a white apron and stomacher. On her
THE BUNCH OF KEYS. 89
right side hung a charming silver hook, to which
were fastened a number of little keys, and with
these keys you might really unlock the little
closet, the little table drawers, the money chest, the
store room, the garret and the cellar.
On opening these, Lizzy found them all filled
with the most charming things. In the wardrobe
hung the neatest dresses for dolly, in the linen
chest tiny shifts, stockings, handkerchiefs, and
miniature collars and caps lay in the nicest order.
On the writing table were neat little copy books, a
diminutive slate, together with differently coloured
pencils, and other writing materials. In the kitchen
closets, all was in the same apple-pie order. There
were little plates, bowls, cans, and cups without
end. And then in the store-room, what a load of
little chests and boxes there were, filled with
almonds, raisins, figs, sugar, party-coloured eggs,
and fruit. It was quite impossible that dolly
should eat them all alone-and Lizzy would
certainly have to help her.
You may think how delighted the little girl was
90 THE BUNCH OF KEYS.
with all these fine things. She thanked her dear
parents most heartily, as well as her kind Emily
for having fitted everything up so nicely. She
rattled her little bunch of keys most joyfully, and
kept her doll's house, and all it contained, in the
very best order, and behaved so well from that day,
that neither the large nor the small set of keys
could find anything ill-natured to say about her.
A SET OF NAUGHTY CHILDREN.
THERE was once a poor widow, who could barely
manage to earn a miserable livelihood for herself
and five children, by the work of her hands.
During her husband's lifetime, the family had
known better days, and lived in pretty rooms, and
were dressed in nice clothes, besides having good
dinners to eat. But now they were obliged to live
in one small room, and the mother thought herself
lucky, when she could earn enough to keep her
children from hunger and cold. As she loved them
very dearly, she spared neither labour nor trouble,
and many a time when all the children were asleep,
was she sitting beside a small lamp, busied with
some delicate piece of work; and there would she be
92 THE FOUR GIFTS.
stitching or embroidering during a great part of
the night, till her eyes ached so that she was
obliged to give over.
Now you would imagine that these five children
were all very obedient and pretty behaved, so as
to gladden the heart of so good a mother. But
no! Such was not the case. Four of them were
very naughty, and occasioned their mother nothing
but sorrow and vexation.
You should only have seen what a worthless,
disobedient fellow was Jacob, the eldest boy, who
never, by any chance, listened to what his mother
told him to do.
If she said: "My dear Jacob, now don't be
playing the livelong day, but do attend to your
learning just for half an hour "-he would turn a
deaf ear to her remonstrances, and go on playing,
let his mother say what she might. It was just
the same story if she requested him to fetch any-
thing from the kitchen, or to go on an errand, or
to leave alone his brother and sisters, whom he
was always teasing.