• TABLE OF CONTENTS
HIDE
 Front Cover
 Front Matter
 Half Title
 Advertising
 Frontispiece
 Title Page
 Table of Contents
 Dedication
 List of Illustrations
 Travels of a butterfly
 The seven little baskets
 Cousin Catherine's servants
 The ugliest one
 A real pond
 What Daisy saw one night
 The wise goose
 The starfish's story
 A great eye
 A snail's race
 Back Matter
 Back Cover






Title: Ten tales without a title
CITATION THUMBNAILS PAGE TURNER PAGE IMAGE ZOOMABLE
Full Citation
STANDARD VIEW MARC VIEW
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00082899/00001
 Material Information
Title: Ten tales without a title
Physical Description: 212 p., 10 leaves of plates : ill. (some col.) ; 26 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Carrington, Edith
Weekes, W ( Illustrator )
Griffith, Farran and Co ( Publisher )
Turnbull & Spears ( Printer )
Publisher: Griffith Farran & Co.
Place of Publication: London
Manufacturer: Turnbull & Spears
Publication Date: [1893]
 Subjects
Subject: Animals -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Pets -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Human-animal relationships -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Children's stories   ( lcsh )
Children's stories -- 1893   ( lcsh )
Publishers' advertisements -- 1893   ( rbgenr )
Bldn -- 1893
Genre: Children's stories
Publishers' advertisements   ( rbgenr )
novel   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage: England -- London
Scotland -- Edinburgh
 Notes
Statement of Responsibility: by Edith Carrington ; illustrated by W. Weekes.
General Note: Date of publication from printer's mark p. 212: 5/93.
General Note: Publisher's advertisements precede text.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00082899
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: aleph - 002223077
notis - ALG3325
oclc - 12428630

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front Cover 1
        Front Cover 2
    Front Matter
        Front Matter
    Half Title
        Half Title
    Advertising
        Page 1
    Frontispiece
        Page 2
    Title Page
        Page 3
        Page 4
    Table of Contents
        Page 5
    Dedication
        Page 6
    List of Illustrations
        Page 7
        Page 8
    Travels of a butterfly
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
    The seven little baskets
        Page 28a
        Page 29
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
        Page 34
        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 39
        Page 40
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
        Page 48a
    Cousin Catherine's servants
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 55
        Page 56
        Page 57
        Page 58
        Page 59
        Page 60
        Page 61
        Page 62
        Page 63
        Page 64
        Page 65
        Page 66
        Page 67
    The ugliest one
        Page 68
        Page 68a
        Page 69
        Page 70
        Page 71
        Page 72
        Page 73
        Page 74
        Page 75
        Page 76
        Page 77
        Page 78
        Page 79
        Page 80
        Page 81
        Page 82
        Page 83
        Page 84
        Page 85
        Page 86
        Page 87
        Page 88
        Page 89
    A real pond
        Page 90
        Page 90a
        Page 91
        Page 92
        Page 93
        Page 94
        Page 95
        Page 96
        Page 97
        Page 98
        Page 99
        Page 100
        Page 101
        Page 102
        Page 103
        Page 104
        Page 105
        Page 106
        Page 107
        Page 108
        Page 109
        Page 110
        Page 111
    What Daisy saw one night
        Page 112
        Page 112a
        Page 113
        Page 114
        Page 115
        Page 116
        Page 117
        Page 118
        Page 119
        Page 120
        Page 121
        Page 122
        Page 123
        Page 124
        Page 125
        Page 126
        Page 127
        Page 128
        Page 129
        Page 130
        Page 131
        Page 132
    The wise goose
        Page 133
        Page 134
        Page 135
        Page 136
        Page 137
        Page 138
        Page 139
        Page 140
        Page 141
        Page 142
        Page 143
        Page 144
        Page 145
        Page 146
        Page 147
        Page 148
        Page 149
        Page 150
    The starfish's story
        Page 150a
        Page 151
        Page 152
        Page 153
        Page 154
        Page 155
        Page 156
        Page 157
        Page 158
        Page 159
        Page 160
        Page 161
        Page 162
        Page 163
        Page 164
        Page 165
        Page 166
        Page 167
        Page 168
        Page 169
        Page 170
        Page 171
        Page 172
    A great eye
        Page 172a
        Page 173
        Page 174
        Page 175
        Page 176
        Page 177
        Page 178
        Page 179
        Page 180
        Page 181
        Page 182
        Page 183
        Page 184
        Page 185
        Page 186
        Page 187
        Page 188
        Page 189
        Page 190
        Page 191
        Page 192
        Page 193
        Page 194
        Page 194a
    A snail's race
        Page 195
        Page 196
        Page 197
        Page 198
        Page 199
        Page 200
        Page 201
        Page 202
        Page 203
        Page 204
        Page 205
        Page 206
        Page 207
        Page 208
        Page 209
        Page 210
        Page 211
        Page 212
    Back Matter
        Back Matter
    Back Cover
        Back Cover 1
        Back Cover 2
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TEN TALES WITHOUT A TITLE.

























UNIFORM WITH THIS VOLUME.


GRANNY'S STORY BOX. By the Author of Our White
Violet." 96 pages, all illustrated in Black and White, and 16
Coloured Plates, by Mrs SEYMOUR LUCAS. Crown 4to, paper
boards. Price 5s.
GRANNY'S WONDERFUL CHAIR, and its Tales of
Fairy Times. By FRANCES BROWNE. Illustrated with 16
Coloured and 63 Black and White Pictures, by Mrs SEYMOUR
LUCAS. Crown 4to, paper boards. Price 5s.
TOLD BY THE FIRESIDE. Original Stories, by E. NESBIT,
HELEN MILMAN, L. T. MEADE, Mrs WORTHINGTON BLISS,
Mrs MOLESWORTH, ROWE LINGSTONE, M. C. LEE, Mrs
MACKAY, G. MANVILLE FENN, ALICE WEBER, E. M. GREEN,
EDWARD GARRETT, THEO GIFT, Mrs GELLIE, Rev. FORBES
E. WINSLOW, EMMA MARSHALL. Illustrated with 16 Coloured
and 80 Black and White Pictures, by Mrs SEYMOUR LUCAS.
Crown 4to, boards. Price 5s.
JOHN CHINAMAN AT HOME. Description versified by
ROWE LINGSTONE. Fully illustrated by R. A. JAUMANN.
28 pp., all in colour. 4to, boards. Price 5s.
WEE BABIES. By AMY E. BLANCHARD. With Original
Designs in Colour, by Miss IDA WAUGH. 4to, boards. Price 5s.
SHORT STORIES ABOUT ANIMALS. By GERTRUDE
SELLON. Illustrated with 16 Coloured and numerous Black
and White Pictures, by W. WEEKES. Crown 4to, paper boards.
Price 5s.
GRIFFITH FARRAN & CO., NEWBERY HOUSE, LONDON.









TEN TALES


Griffith


Farran &


Newbery House
39 Charing Cross Road, London


Co.


























































The Rights of Translation and of Reproduction are Reserved.

























CONTENTS.


PAGE
I.
TRAVELS OF A BUTTERFLY 9

II.
THE SEVEN LITTLE BASKETS 29

III.
COUSIN CATHERINE S SERVANTS 49

IV.
THE UGLIEST ONE 68

V.
A REAL POND 90

VI.
WHAT DAISY SAW ONE NIGHT 112

VII.
THE WISE GOOSE 133

VIII.
THE STARFISH'S STORY 151

IX.
A GREAT EYE 73

x.
A SNAIL'S RACE 195




































MRS THATCHER;


IN WHOSE GARDEN THE WRITER FOUND A WELCOME REFUGE FROM

TOWN TUMULT AND DISTRACTING DIN BENEATH THE COOL

SHELTER OF GREEN TREES; WHERE MUCH OF

NATURE'S LORE WAS READ AND WRITTEN

DOWN FOR THE FOLLOWING PAGES.
















LISTor I ILLUSTRATIONS


A THOUGHTLESS BOY-Where the Butter rl
is born-A Nourishing Meal-Blue Lt;t-ar- ,
martins-The Bull that chased
Johnny-Rooks.
SEVEN LITTLE BASKETS-
Pleasant Fields Gathering
Primroses-Wooden Soldier-
A Peep-Show-Little Mary.
A HAPPY FAMILY-Grubbing ir
Pignuts-Cousin Catherine's ervants-
Ostriches-Elephants-Geese-Frog.
THE UGLIEST PUSSY-Cats and Dogs-
Farm-yard-Lassie and the Ugliest One-
Ruh a... i rh. Kitr ,-- H: .pe.ir, g
S thc T .:.:.,-- ilrl ,'.J I',.: -lh,..,: r,:
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tbe travels of a i3utterfly.

Everything that lives
Lives not alone nor for itself. Fear not, and I will call
The weak worm from its lowly bed, and thou shalt hear its voice.
-BLAKE.

to FNDERNEATH a cabbage-leaf in a gay garden, one
j summer day, a butterfly was born.
The cabbage-leaf was all covered with beads of dew,
which made it a most lovely thing to look at-one of the most
charming things which one could possibly fancy.
By the side of the cabbage, on a raspberry bush, a great
garden-spider, dressed in brown velvet, with pearl and silver
ornaments, had spun his web; and that was all a-glimmer with
dew-drops too, which made it look more exquisite than the
finest lady's best lace, spark-
ling with diamonds. Only the
spider thought the dew-drops
a bother; because they made
his web wet, and he was long-
ing for the sunbeams to come i
and drink them all up, so that
the net might be ready to
catch flies.
It is high time that I had .
my breakfast," thought the
spider, "but not a single fly has come my way yet. I am
anxious about the web-whether it will bear the weight of all
those heavy water-drops And indeed the web was quite







THE TRAVELS OF A BUTTERFLY.


weighed down-so that one might have thought the delicate
threads must snap; but no.
Soon the sun became hotter, and the beams made quick
work of the little dew-drops. Long before mid-day there was
not a single one left to glitter anywhere, and all the little flies
came bizz! buzz! down about the raspberry-bush, just as the
spider wished.
How warm it was on the cabbage-leaf!
It was just the right birthplace for a butterfly, which loves
the sunshine better than anything else in the world. The sun
is the mother of the little butterflies, and takes care of them
from the very beginning, for there is no one else to do it. The
real mother of the baby butterflies always dies before they are
born. Poor little butterflies! And yet they are taken good
care of, although they come from such a very small starting-
place that you would hardly think it could be worth anyone's
while to think about them.
The first sign of a butterfly is a little tiny egg-not nearly
as large as a pin's head-scarcely larger than a grain of sand.
Yet, though it is almost too small to be seen, it is finely
carved, with a pattern outside, and carefully shaped. Some
of these eggs are in the form of a thimble; another kind
are shaped like a bottle, the bottom sticking to a leaf, while
the neck-end stands upright, and others are round, and a little
flat. Of this sort was the egg which had been laid on the
cabbage.
Inside this egg lay a tiny creature, one day to be a butterfly,
but not yet, for it was obliged to be something else first.
Nobody would guess, unless they had been told, how butter-
flies begin their lives. The sunshine poured down more and
more brightly. It made the spider dance for joy. The little
flies frisked, too, but their joy was quickly over, and their







.THE TRAVELS OF A BUTTERFLY.


dancing ended as soon as they touched the sticky threads
of the cunning web.
The spider himself took care to keep out of sight, in his
den under a leaf, but he first fastened a long cord from his
lurking-place to the web, so that whenever a fly became entangled
there, the jerking of this thread told him of it. It was the
same as a telegraphic message to him, saying, Come down at
once! a fly is in the net," and brought him down in a trice,
in good time to grasp the prey.
Then, after the foolish fly was dead, he rolled it up with
web, round and round like a bundle, and carried it off to
his larder, where he ate it all by himself.
"I have no family to provide for, that is one comfort,"
said the spider. Ah, I brought my children up the respectable
way-to shift for themselves. I have no one now to think of,
but my own-precious-self! "
No more he had. The spider's children, although they
had only left the egg ten days before, knew each one how to
make his own little web; no bigger than a penny-piece, yet as
perfect as that of a grown-up spider.
I don't suppose now," he went on, that any other insect
has such sharp-witted children as mine. Those silly butterflies,
for instance, when they come out of the egg--" Here the
spider broke off; there was a great shaking in the web, and he
was obliged to attend to business and leave off talking. While
he was rolling up the third fly he had caught that morning,
and putting it by "for a rainy day," something very curious
was going on among the little yellow dots upon the cabbage-
leaf.
Each of the little eggs cracked, and out crawled, not a tiny
butterfly-although a young duck comes out of a duck's egg,
and a tiny robin out of, a robin's egg, and a wee spider out of







THE TRAVELS OF A BUTTERFLY.


a spider's egg; and you would think, a little butterfly might be
expected to come out of a butterfly's egg. Nothing of the sort
happens. Out of each of these round specks on the cabbage-
leaf came a very small caterpillar, which could hardly be seen,
for it was so little, and so exactly the same colour as the place
on which it was born. But although it was not a perfect
butterfly yet, and had no wings, this small worm had a good
notion of what to do. It began by biting its way through the
tough egg-shell-which it ate up. As soon as that was gone
it set to work at the edge of the cabbage-leaf with little jaws,
which munched from side to side, instead of up and down, like
yours and mine.
Each of the tiny worms had sixteen little feet, with hooks
or hairs to cling with at the end; six eyes on each side of
its head; a good appetite and plenty to eat. What could a
caterpillar want more ?
How they did eat! One could almost see them grow;
they devoured the green food so fast. As the days went on the
cabbage-leaf was all gone, except the hard veins, which they
could not bite; and some of the little family had to travel east
while the rest went west to find a new dining-hall.
Then a mother chaffinch came down one morning and picked
up a dozen or so of the caterpillars, laying them across her
beak one after another with the heads and tails dangling out on
each side. She carried them away for her young ones in the
nest at home. "Twink! twink !" said she, as soon as her beak
was empty, and went back again to look for more.
She soon cleared the cabbage bed of all but a few cater-
pillars, which lay snugly hidden the wrong side of the leaf,
where her bright eyes had not yet spied them. "Twink!" she
cried again, wiping her beak. What a nourishing meal for
the little ones I I must go to the rose-bushes now."







THE TRAVELS OF A BUTTERFLY.


So she went, and she picked up a mouthful of green
blights, which were spoiling the flower-buds. After that, she
went away to make her own dinner on the seeds of groundsel,
chickweed, and sting-nettle. When she was gone a blue tit
came down to the raspberry bushes, peering with his sharp eyes
among the leaves and shoots, here and there pulling one off
because there was an insect in it, which he pecked out and
swallowed-it seemed mischievous, but the shoot would have
been killed.anyhow by the grub. He was very busy, and made
















a noise all the while like a little saw being sharpened; till the
gardener saw his blue cap and yellow breast glancing from
bough to bough as he hung on to the apple-twigs, clearing
them of many a dozen of hurtful insect plagues, and he came
out and drove the little chap away, and set up an ugly bird
made of tin, painted to look like a hawk, to frighten the little
birds.
So after that, the green caterpillars which were left had it
all their own way; and so had the blights and the grubs.







14 .THE TRAVELS OF A BUTTERFLY.
They went on eating the apple-buds arid the rose and raspberry
shoots, as well as the cabbages, without fear of being eaten
themselves ; for the blue tit went
v ^ away and told all the other tits
and small birds that a dreadful
hawk was come to live in the
garden, and that they must never
Sgo there any more or they would
Sbe caught and killed. The eldest
of the green caterpillars soon
grew to be quite a good size. He went on feeding on the
moist, juicy cabbage until his skin became too tight for him;
and then--What happens when little boys and girls grow
out of their clothes? Why, somebody gives them new ones
of course.
Well, the caterpillar, like a few poor, sad little boys and
girls, had no one to take care of him. But, luckily, he was
able to get new clothes for himself, as he had nobody to do it
for him. He felt very. uneasy for a time-his skin was so
tight that it bothered him. It was time that he began to think
about another suit, that was certain; so he made a little carpet
of silk first, on the leaf where he was feeding. This was to
give him a firmer footing than the slippery leaf, while he
twisted his body from side to side to make the old skin split.
As soon as he had got rid of his worn-out coat in this way, he
had nothing more to do, for underneath it a fresh new one had
grown beforehand to be ready when it was wanted. When this
little job was done, he began to eat again faster than ever, and
went on until that skin grew too tight; then changed again-
and so on, over again, four times in all. And the last time, the
caterpillar, which was now several weeks old and quite wise,
knew that at length the hour had come for a real change in







-THE TRAVELS OF A BUTTERFLY.


himself-not a change of outside skins only; though how he
knew this I cannot well say.
He began to feel very restless; he did not care any longer
for his meals of cabbage-he wanted something else that was
not food, and kept stretching his head up and waving it in the
air, seeking in vain; for the eyes of a caterpillar, though he has
twelve, can only see just before his nose, so that he is obliged
to almost touch what he wishes to look at before he can find
out what it is.
The little creature crawled quite fast up and down a stem
still searching-searching-but for what it could not tell.
Dear, dear! I wonder what I want? I am sure I don't
know! it said to itself, as it went rambling to and fro, aimlessly.
The fact was that the caterpillar's life on the cabbage-leaf
was over, and he wished to hang himself up by the heels,
though he did not in the least know what for; and it was not
until he had found a place which would suit him to do this in,
that the poor caterpillar began to be at peace.
Five times he had travelled up the cabbage-stalk as far as
he could go, and finding that it ended in empty air, he swayed
his head from right to left once or twice, and went down again
to find that at the lower end the cabbage-stump ended in the
ground, which he did not want either. But the sixth time he
stopped just in a little nook where a leaf-stem branched out
over his head.
"There! Now I know what I must do I said the cater-
pillar to itself; and it began to bring out of its mouth long
threads of silk, which it could draw out to any length as it
pleased. With these it made a sort of silken cushion on the
stem overhead, and then, turning itself upside down, clasped
the silk pad with the last pair of legs at the end of its tail, so
that it was hanging head downwards.






THE TRAVELS OF A BUTTERFLY.


"So far, so good," said the caterpillar. But how about
the wind ?-if it blows it will perhaps set me swinging to and
fro so that I shall dash against the cabbage-stalk, which won't
be at all nice."
So the shrewd caterpillar tied himself up with a silken
girdle or sash from one side to the other, close to the cabbage-
stalk, moving his head across and fastening the threads now on
the right hand, now on the left, while he hung upside down all
the while. Oh, what a clever plan!
After all this work the caterpillar rested itself. Something
was going to happen inside him-he could feel that. His body
was growing shorter and thicker, his legs were shrinking into
himself; they were going-going-gone !! !
After a day or two he had shrivelled up into a short green
thing, all over black speckles, which was hanging with the
upper end in, and the lower end out of a loose empty skin.
The task of the caterpillar was almost done-it had
changed into a chrysalis, and had only now to hang itself up
again to the silk cushion above, which it managed to do by
somehow dragging itself up inside the empty skin, which still
hung there. The old skin was rolled up something like a
stocking when it is being taken off as the chrysalis inside it
climbed upward and fastened itself by some small hooks which
grew at its tip to the firm silk pad.
When this was done the chrysalis stayed perfectly still to
wait for what would come next.
Patiently, quietly, it hung there day after day like a dead
thing. The beetles and snails which fed in the garden took no
notice of it, for they thought it was nothing but a bit of
withered stem or dried leaf. The birds thought the same.
The rain pattered and drummed on the cabbage tent above,
but it never moved, tied fast by its silken ropes. The sun







THE TRAVELS OF A BUTTERFLY.


poured down all day long, and as the heat grew greater towards
the middle of summer one might have seen that the colours of
the chrysalis changed and grew darker. Under the thin skin
delicate tracings were to be seen, as if wings were folded up
under the wrapper. The thing began to move. At last, one
day, it gave a sort of twist, as if it were tired of so long a sleep
and were trying to jerk itself awake.
And wake it did. First a little split-then a larger crack,
room enough for a head to peep out; next came a pair of
crumpled white wings, six black legs, and a downy black body.
Out came the prisoner-slowly at first, afterwards with a
rush upward until it found itself clinging to the edge of a leaf
in a sunny place in such a way as to let the wings spread
downwards so as to shake out the creases and crumples,
making then quiver and tremble that they might be smooth
and strong all the sooner. The wings did not take long to
become fit for flight. Dressed in creamy white, with trimmings
and fringes of the softest down, here and there a black velvet
line, or dot, or wing-tip just to set off the gold-dust sprinkled
on it, the butterfly's wings soon took strength from the strong
sun, as she shut and opened them in the light, as if to show by
turns the beauty of the wings when opened, and their soft green
tinge when closed. Away darted the butterfly, fluttering and
skipping, to play in the meadow among the daisies and clover
blooms.
Oh, what a happy life that was! and how different from
being obliged to crawl about with those sixteen legs and eat
cabbage all day, besides having one's skin always growing too
tight for one.
It was a change indeed; for firstly, instead of having a
heavy body and short legs to carry it with, the butterfly's wings
were so large and its body so small and light now that she
B







THE TRAVELS OF A BUTTERFLY.


could float along now almost without the trouble of flapping
them.
But then, you see, she had earned a holiday now by work-
ing so hard and being so patient when she was a caterpillar.
Then, instead of twelve small eyes, that could hardly see at all,
she had now two great eyes, each made up of more than a
thousand small ones fitted into each other like the cells in a
honeycomb. Out of these the butterfly could look every way
at once without the trouble of rolling the eyes in her head.
Last of all, as to food, the butterfly was not obliged to take
any trouble about that; for instead of jaws, she had a long
hollow trunk, no thicker than a hair, which she kept curled up
like a watch-spring when she was not using it; but when she
was hungry or thirsty she had only to straighten it out and she
could sip the honey and dew out of the flower-cups without
having even to suck; she had only to breathe out the air which
was in the trunk and dip it into a flower and the sweet juice
ran up of its own accord, so that the butterfly's meals ran down
her throat without giving her the trouble of chewing them
even. But then the butterfly had been so hard worked as a
caterpillar. It was only fair that life should be made easy for
her now. So she had nothing to do but play in the meadow
all day long-and many other butterflies she found there all
amusing themselves too. Some were bright blue, like a bit of
the sky, others were orange or yellow, and a few had dark
wings with scarlet, white, and blue spots on them shining like
jewels.
The flowers themselves were not half so gay, yet they were
very happy, too.
"We must sit on our stems," said the flowers, "and stay
at home to receive our visitors-that is polite."
The humble white butterfly enjoyed herself with the rest.







THE TRAVELS OF A BUTTERFLY.


She sat upon a rose-bud to rest herself and look round, as she
closed her wings over her back you could hardly see her, the
green streaks and chequers on the outside of them made her
look so like a leaf or a twig; even the sharp-eyed hedge-
sparrows, on the look-out for what they could catch for their
nestlings, passed it over.
There was a bed of sting-nettles just below, where a batch
of butterflies' eggs had been laid in the spring, and on one
nettle-top sat a butterfly which had just come out of its
chrysalis. The empty shell was hanging from the stalk still,
covered with sharp gilded points. The butterfly, which had
only broken through it an hour ago, was just thinking of taking
its first flight, and sat flapping its glorious wings to try their
strength.
Oh, how splendid they were! Bright crimson-orange,
each with a great eye like one of the eyes of a peacock's tail
painted on it. The colours flashed in the sunshine as bright as
a rainbow; but when the butterfly shut his wings he, too, was
hardly to be found; for when they were shut the outsides of
them showed only, and they were brown and black, and made
him look like a bit of stick., It was a wonderful surprise, like
a conjuring trick, to watch him flash out all his painted show
and then make it vanish again by merely clapping his wings
together. That was the butterfly's way of hiding himself; but
when you looked closely even the dull, cloudy-looking outer sides
of his wings were covered with a fine brocade pattern marked
out with the smallest possible touches and streaks of gold.
Oh, how beautiful! thought the plain little white butter-
fly as the peacock-eyed beauty gave its first flitting dip into the
sunshiny air, shaking gleams of light from its wings, while the
other followed admiringly after it and settled on a daisy close
at hand.







THE TRAVELS OF A BUTTERFLY.


At that moment several children came into the field with
baskets, which they were filling with buttercups. They seemed
very merry and playful together, as light-hearted, almost, as the
butterflies and bees; then, why could they not enjoy themselves
and let all the other glad creatures be happy too ?
For a time they were too busy with their baskets to notice
much besides; but presently one little fellow caught sight of
the brilliant butterfly with the peacock-eyes. In a moment he
had snatched the red cloth cap from his head and dashed it
at the pretty thing. Up went the butterfly, frightened, and
sweeping wildly from side to side. Away went the child after it.
The little boy had only two legs, while the butterfly had
four wings, so it had the best chance after all; but then this
butterfly had not long come out of its chrysalis-its wings had
not their full power. Soon it was forced to rest on a flower;
the boy stole towards it, and again flinging his cap, this time
he managed to toss it well over the insect. In less time than
one could count six, he had it in his hands-struggling, half
crushed, one lovely wing hanging torn and useless.
How glad the boy was I But after all, what had he got by
it ? The pretty butterfly lay dead in his small hand-its happy
little life quite spoilt and over. No one was any better off-for
a butterfly, even if you can catch it, does not last much longer
than a flower. It is not worth while to take its life for the sake:
of its wings-their beauty is soon gone! Yet he set off to chase
more butterflies; even the poor little cabbage butterfly had a
narrow escape. It was once right under the cruel cap, but
managed to creep out, and, darting upward, circled away higher
and higher till it was out of reach; not daring to settle again
till it was outside the field and safely perched upon the face of a
hot sand-bank, where it stayed sunning its wings and enjoying
the sun's blaze.







THE TRAVELS OF A BUTTERFLY.


How scorching it was on the sand-bank! The slope was
steep and high, and at the bottom ran a railroad where trains
rushed by every hour or so.
The bank was full of holes, and as the butterfly sat near
one of them-whizz! popped out something, which seemed to
shoot itself away into the air.
It was actually a bird! Yes. The last thing that one
would expect to find living down a hole; and yet the little
sand-martins dig holes with their beaks and claws in a soft

















sand-bank and make their nests at the end all snug and safe.
This bank had hundreds of their tunnels in it. In the mouths
of some of the little caves sat the father-birds gabbling and
chattering to each other, or making short flights to catch the
flies which they took to their wives and children inside.
They were fond of gossip, that was plain;- but they did
their duty too. At times they went down for a dip in the cool
stream at the bottom of the field just below, and came back
with their mouths full of flies, as well as of the latest news.






THE TRAVELS OF A BUTTERFLY.


Chatter, chatter, chatter! Serve him right, I say!" said
one sand-martin to another. "What right has anybody to
chase flies but ourselves ?-and we have families to feed! "
"How did he get out? said another sand-martin,
drawing one of his wing feathers through his beak, for it was
ruffled. "I did not wait to see myself. I only saw him
splashing in the water. I didn't think it mattered much
whether he ever got out at all! "
It did to his father," said another. Just think what I
felt last year when one of the little ones crept out to the brink
of the cave that time and fell over! His mother and I
could not get him up again-we had to feed him where he
was "
Snap!" said the first, and he wheeled after a fly right
down to the waterside and back again. What were the sand-
martins gossiping about? Why, about a little boy who had
fallen into the river. He had been chasing a large yellow
butterfly, and it flew over the hedge into the next field, which
was all covered with smooth green grass, with a deep stream
winding along the bottom. The boy scrambled through a gap,
thinking only of what he was chasing; away they went till
they had crossed the field, when the butterfly quietly flew across
the river and left its tormentor behind. It was not till then
that the little boy heard a kind of low growl behind him, and,
looking round, he saw standing between himself and the only
way home a huge bull. The bull began to walk slowly towards
him, making an angry sound as it came, and tossing its head.
The child stood for an instant too frightened to move, then,
with a sharp cry, he threw up his hands and began to run.
This was the worst thing he could have done, for bulls are like
little boys in some ways-they love chasing anything that will
run away from them.







THE TRAVELS OF A BUTTERFLY.


The more the boy ran the faster came the bull after him,
with its head close to the ground and its tail in the air.
Oh! what terror Johnnie felt now !-he found out what it
was like to be chased himself. What could he do? Over the
field faster and faster he went, the bull behind coming nearer
and nearer every
moment ; which IR d n i
way could he
turn ? where
should he fly ?
Oh! what would
Johnnie have
given for a pair
of wings ? The
river was in front.
the bull at his
heels! Splash! a cold plunge-a dreadful buzzing in his ears, and
then he was fighting with the water, which got into his mouth and
choked him. The splash frightened away all the little sand-
martins which were dipping and catching flies--it even startled
the bull, which stood on the bank staring, and whisking the
tuft at the end of its tail. After all, it was a good-natured
young bull, and wanted nothing but a game of play with
Johnnie, only it might have been rather a rough game. But it
was lucky that Johnnie's plump into the stream had made so
loud a noise, or he might never have had a chance of playing
any more games at all with bulls or anything else; for a man
heard it on the opposite bank, along which he was strolling
with a big kind dog; and he and the dog between them fished
him out, and took him home all dripping wet. The sand-
martin came back, and he saw it all, and went to the bank to
tell his wife and little ones the story; the white butterfly heard







THE TRAVELS OF A BUTTERFLY.


it too. Perhaps he won't chase us any more," she said, now
that he knows how disagreeable it is to be run after."
The butterfly had rested on the steep bank long enough.
Something seemed to urge her to fly again. There was some-
thing which she seemed to be looking for and wanting-yet she
could not tell what the want was.
All day she flew about restlessly, at night she crept under
the shelter of a leaf, or into some flower-bell, or hole, or crevice
to sleep; yet she never seemed to forget that strange something
which she had still to do; no, not even when she was waltzing
flying dances with the other butterflies, in and out, round and
round, spinning, turning, and whirling up in the sunny sky.
Once a great clumsy cockchafer flew flop against the frail
little butterfly, and they both came struggling to the ground,
for their legs and wings had become entangled together.
"What do you get in my way for?" said the cockchafer,
for it was not very civil. Where do you want to go ?"
I don't know," said the little butterfly meekly. I want
to go somewhere-I don't know where."
People should always know where they want to go," said
the cockchafer.. I know where I want to go well enough; I
want to lay my eggs-if other idle people wouldn't get in my
way and knock me down."
This was really too good a joke, for the butterfly weighed
as light as a feather compared to the heavy cockchafer who had
blundered against her-and the cockchafer had only fallen down
on the ground by its own weight.
However, this is a good place for eggs," added the cock-
chafer, and it set about the business of laying them at once.
First it bored a hole, in the ground by sticking in a long spear
which was hidden in its tail, then it dropped an egg into the
hole, and began over again, so on, till all was done.







THE TRAVELS OF A BUTTERFLY.


"There," said the cockchafer, "that is what I call taking
care of my belongings. No one can do more than I have done
for their children, I consider. They will now be born in the
greatest comfort, with food already to hand."
"Awk! awk! awk!" said a big black bird which was
walking solemnly about the field with several others. The
cockchafer flew up into a small oak-tree in the hedge when it
saw them coming, and the butterfly followed. The big black
birds were rooks; and they were grubbing in the ground for
what they could find. It did not cost them much trouble to
dig, as their beaks were strong and-had a bit of leathery skin at
the top, in the rooks' forehead; so that even if a rook were to
bury his beak in the earth as far as it would go, which he some-
times did, his feathers would not be spoilt round the root of the
beak, or rubbed off, which would have hurt him. They seemed
to be enjoying the food they found very much, as they walked
backwards and forwards over the furrows, routing and rum-
maging while they cawed to one another. One rook sat in the
hedge to keep watch, and presently he gave the alarm. There
was a tremendous clamour and bustle at once among the rooks.
Pop I bang! went a great sound somewhere-and suddenly one
of them fell dead. Some men came over the stile, picked up
the dead rook, and propped him upon a forked stick in the
middle of the field that the others might see it and keep away
for fear they should be shot too.
Now," said the cockchafer, he's done for. A good thing
too! What business had he to be eating up my brothers and
sisters ? Why, I might have been eaten up myself, and what a
loss that would have been. Did you say 'Yes ?'"
The butterfly had not said yes, but now it said, You lived
under the ground once then ? "
Why, you see, we are born under the ground," said the






THE TRAVELS OF A BUTTERFLY.


cockchafer, "and live there three years or so, feeding on the
roots of grass, or corn, or turnips, or whatever there may be.
Men try to dig us up with their clumsy tools-they do us all
the harm they can because they grudge our killing all their


~r


crops-but the mischief men can do is nothing to the damage
the rooks can do! They can get at us and clear a field in no
time. I am glad they are gone, and that one of them is dead.


i~-'. %


:
I,







THE TRAVELS OF A BUTTERFLY.


Now my children will have a chance of growing up I And the
cockchafer began to browse on the leaves of the oak-tree, and
then on the next when the first was stripped by himself and his
friends, till soon the Iedgerow looked quite bare.
The little butterfly did not stay to watch him; she felt
more and more fidgety, and wanting every moment to change
from place to place.
"What can it be that I am needing?" she said over and
over again, as she flew from one scented flower to another, none
of which seemed to suit her. Is it a rose that I pine for? "
No. She settled on the sweetest little opening cup-but
she cared no longer for honey, and soon left the pink blossom.
Was it that beautiful crown of honeysuckle-could that
tempt her? The scent was so sweet that it lured the little
wings to flutter towards it; but soon the butterfly turned away
unsatisfied still.
"What can it be that I yearn so to find?" thought the
tired creature, as, half borne by its wings, half wafted by the
wind which was rising into the first autumn gale, and swept the
butterfly before it like a fallen leaf, she dropped quite weak from
weariness upon a tall flower-spire tipped with purple bells,
where a bee was trying to collect honey, though nearly all the
foxglove blooms were shaken off and strewn upon the ground.
But she could have no rest there. Far and wide the
little butterfly wandered, or was tossed upon the storm that
day, thinking always of a thing which it wanted to find; with
just the same strong desire as, when a caterpillar, it had longed
to put itself away like a dead thing until the time of its change
should come.
Evening was at hand, and still she could not keep quiet.
She flew onward, always hoping to find what she was looking
for, till at last she reached a garden paling. And then, inside







THE TRAVELS. OF A BUTTERFLY.


the green gate, growing with many other plants of the same
kind, the butterfly saw what she had searched for so long and
so earnestly.
It was not a very fine or grand thing--only a cabbage-leaf.
And why did the little butterfly want to find a cabbage-leaf
so much that she could know no peace, rest, or comfort, till she
had reached one? Had she in her old age taken a fancy for
eating caterpillar food again ?
No. The butterfly was not thinking at all about herself.
She settled contentedly upon the leaf and laid her eggs
there-that was all.
And if you want to know how it is that the poor simple
butterfly takes so much thought and care for her young, which
she will never live even to see, that is more than I can tell you;
only I know that she is guided by the same Great Love which
cares for you and me.
After this was finished the little butterfly felt quite happy
and satisfied.
"Now I may rest," she said, creeping into a comfortable
crack in the wall. ." I shall go to sleep, and who knows what
will happen next? Waking up is something to look forward
to "
But that was the last thing she ever did-for she fell asleep
and never woke up any more.
At least so the spider said, for he found her in the crevice
when he came in to lie by there for the winter, and mistook her
for a withered rose-leaf.














Ebe seven little J3askets.

"Three, helping one another, bear the burden of six."
-G. HERBERT.

T NCLE SAM had lived all by himself for so long that he
k had grown quite accustomed to it; for he had no
children of his own, and his wife was dead.
So when one morning he got a letter from India to
say that the seven little children of his brother were coming to
England for him to take care of, he wondered how he should
manage to do it.
What is an old fellow like me to do with seven babies?"
he said to himself. I haven't the least idea how to take care
of children. Seven of them I don't even remember all their
names; what am I to do ?
Uncle Sam walked up and down the room several times,
and then he rang the bell for his old housekeeper and told her
all about it.
Bless their little hearts!" cried the cheery dame at the
news. She had a round, rosy, kind face that seemed to keep
the remains of the smiles which she had given to her babies
long ago still shining in it. Do with tlem, sir ? Make 'em
happy to be sure! that's all you need do, and they will be good
of themselves! Give 'em plenty of wholesome food and put
'em to bed early, and don't notice one more than another.
That's my notions. And don't say, 'You naughty girl!' or
'You naughty boy!' without a reason for it. There's many







THE SEVEN LITTLE BASKETS.


a child made naughty by being told they are so, and called
names, so to speak. They take to the character you gives 'em
like."
Uncle Samuel rubbed his hands, for he was pleased to find
that Mrs Rummage, the housekeeper, was so wise about things.
"Well, everything must be ready by next week; beds, you
know, and pinafores, and that kind of thing," said Uncle Sam,
blinking his eyes a little anxiously.
"You leave it to me, sir!" said Mrs Rummage, smiling
rather scornfully at Uncle Sam, and bustling sturdily away to
begin her preparations, leaving him much comforted.
"I know I've got their names written down in a pocket-
book somewhere," he began again to himself. "I must go and
see."
Uncle Sam searched in his desk, and in his cupboards, and
drawers, and everywhere; at last he found the names of his
brother's seven children; and they were "Alicia Margaretta
Theodora" the eldest; "Delphina Christabel Maud" the
second; Rosalind Maria Theresa" the third; Clarissa- "
"Oh, dear! oh, dear!" cried Uncle Sam, breaking off as
he read the list aloud, and crumpling up all his tidy front hair
with his hand, and knocking off his spectacles; how am I to
remember all these? and which is which? Out of them all
there is only one boy, and kis name is 'Maximilian Alexander
Ivan !' How shall I ever get on ?"
Uncle Sam shut up the note-book in despair and walked off
into the town instead, to get things for his little nieces and one
nephew.
And when he got there he bothered the shopkeepers very
much by always wanting seven things exactly alike. For
instance, he chose a dear little wooden arm-chair, exactly what
any child would delight in having for his own, and then he







THE SEVEN LITTLE BASKETS.


said, "Send me seven of those, if you please." Next he
pointed to a box of bricks and said, "And seven boxes of
bricks like that, and seven balls, and seven Noah's arks, seven
hoops, seven trumpets, and seven drums; and let me see, seven
monkeys climbing up sticks, without which I couldn't be happy
when I was a child, though I don't see any of them nowadays.
Never mind! Seven Jacks-in-the-box (Uncle Sam was getting
quite confused), and--"
Here he looked all round the shop to find something else,
not too grown-up (for the eldest of all the little people with the
long names was only eight years old), and something that the
shopman had seven of, for he remembered what Mrs Rummage
had said about making them happy and treating them all alike.
Just as Uncle Sam was coming out of the toy-shop he
caught sight of a pretty little basket, one of a dozen, hanging
up on a nail.
"And seven of those, if you please," said he, pointing at it
with his walking-stick.
Yes, sir," said the shopman, answering quite politely, but
at the same time thinking that the old gentleman who lived all
alone at the Manor House must be going a little crazy to be
ordering bushels of toys for himself in that way. It was a
good thing that Uncle Sam did not ask for seven of any other
article just then, for the shopman had made up his mind that
he had better call his wife to take a look at Uncle Sam and
give her opinion about him.
However, the toys came home all right, and the time
dragged very slowly along-at least so Uncle Sam and Mrs
Rummage thought-until the day when the children were to
arrive.
On that morning Uncle Sam was quite in a flurry and
a flutter.







THE SEVEN LITTLE BASKETS.


"They won't cry, I suppose, Mrs Rummage?" he said,
for he could not bear to see children unhappy, not even the
little ragged ones in the road; and he had spread out all
the toys in seven heaps
on the floor in front
of the seven little
chairs.
"I should think not,
sir," said Mrs Rum-
mage, hopefully; and
if they do, children's
tears is soon dry! "
Presently there was a rumbling of wheels. Uncle Sam,
who had been pretending to read, threw down his book and
went trotting out. In a minute or two he came striding back
again with a child on each shoulder, while the rest trooped
along behind with their own nurse, who was smiling and
curtseying to Mrs Rummage, as she carried the youngest in
her arms.
Let's see! let's see!" said Uncle Sam, setting down the
two little girls from his shoulders and stretching out his arms
for the roly-poly baby boy, who was prattling and making
snatches at him. I suppose that is Master Maximilian
Alexander What's-his-name, eh ?"
"Oh, dear no, sir," said nurse, smiling. "This is only,
little Sonnie; and here is Ally and Delly, Rosie and Posie--the
twins, sir-Meg and Peg that you had on your shoulders, sir.
That's how their father names them, the precious lambs! And
Sonnie, sir, he wants to come to you. For certain he mistakes
you for his father, and you are wonderful alike, sir! "
Here nurse wiped her eyes as she thought of how the
father and mother had parted from their darlings and trusted







THE SEVEN LITTLE BASKETS.


them to Uncle Sam, and she curtseyed to him again with a
satisfied sigh, for she liked the look of Uncle Sam's blue eyes
underneath his white eyebrows, and the way he handled Sonnie
-leading him so gently.
He kissed the little ones all round, feeling very glad to be
rid of the long names. Then he took Ally and Delly, Rosie
and Posie, Meg, Peg, and Sonnie, and showed them the seven
little chairs, the boxes of bricks and the rest of the toys. For
a short space they were all speechless from delight, but silence
did not last long after their eyes fell on the drums and
trumpets. Poor Uncle Sam! how he wished he had never
bought those!
"Never mind, sir," said Mrs Rummage,. cheerfully,
"they'll soon be worn out; and don't you never buy no more."
Then Uncle Sam pulled out of his pockets seven parcels
of sweets-only nurse took them away again because she said
they must have their dinners first.
So they had a good dinner, and then they began to find
their little tongues and to run about the house shouting from
pleasure at everything they saw; riding by turns on Uncle
Sam's back, and blowing the seven trumpets into his ear until
he thought that deafness would not be so bad a trouble after
all, besides kicking him with their fat little legs to make him
go faster, till at last he was quite thankful when bedtime came
and they were put into seven little cribs all in a row, with a
larger one for nurse at the end.
The next day they all thought of the new toys the moment
they woke up, and most of the children had a few under their
pillows. It was a fine, bright day in spring, beautiful, cool,
fresh, English spring, not sultry Indian weather, with a fierce
hot sun so strong that little children cannot play out of doors
when he is shining.







THE SEVEN LITTLE BASKETS.


How the children enjoyed the pleasant fields that day!
And among all the toys which good Uncle Sam had collected
for them, there was nothing which
S pleased the children so well as the
Seven little baskets.
The hedges were full of prim-
roses and violets, and these little
children had never seen any
before. Just think of it, little
English boys and girls, that there
-. iare poor little people born in India
S who never see a primrose or a
violet till they are six or seven
years old, and not then unless
their parents send them home here.. They are worse off in
this way even than the sad town-bred ones, for these can,
may be, catch a glimpse of the pale golden primroses and
heaps of purple violets and nodding
daffodils, at least in show windows .
or baskets in the streets. As for
the dear daisy, she grows nearly
everywhere, that no little child may .
forget her sweet face, and none grow
up without making friends with the .
most charming of mother-earth's
babies.
Ally and Delly, Rosie and Posie,
Meg, Peg, and even Sonnie soon
began to make up for lost time by
rushing at the primroses and filling
their baskets, their laps, their hats, and their hands as fast as
they could.







THE SEVEN LITTLE BASKETS.


Nurse had often told them of how, when she was a little
girl, she used to make daisy and dandelion chains; and spoken
of how, in England, the hedges and fields were covered like a
gold and silver carpet with buttercups and daisies-with freckled
cowslips and dancing bluebells. Perhaps the children had hardly
believed all these things; but now they found them to be all true.
Little Sonnie, who was only two years old, could not roam
so far as the rest; but he soon filled his basket with flowers,
picked off quite short and clumpy, and then began to make a
bunse" as he called it; only his bunch had half the heads of
the flowers at the stemmy end and half the right way. I
wonder how the flowers which were head-downwards liked it?
Then he wanted to fill his pocket, too, only there were some
glass marbles in it already, and a lump of sugar-candy, and a
precious wooden soldier, the last of a boxful which Sonnie had
brought all the way from India, besides his little red and white
pocket-handkerchief; so that there really was not much room,
as Sonnie said, in mine pottit."
He pulled out the pink handkerchief, '1
which was the thing he valued least, and
gave it to nurse to carry, which made
a little more space; but, sad to say, he '
jerked out the beloved wooden soldier,
which fell into the grass at the bottom
of an ant-hill. The soldier lay with one 'lf- -
eye close to a crack in the ground, and -a "
the other gazing across the field, for his
eyes were not painted straight on his face. He still kept his fist
clenched firmly where the gun used to be before Sonnie broke it
off, for the soldier wished to show that he was not frightened at
being lost, but was still calm enough to shoulder his musket.
Was it his fault if the musket was not there ?







THE SEVEN LITTLE BASKETS.


Sonnie crammed his pocket with cowslips and daisies; then
he emptied them out again for nurse to make him a chain, and
finding that the soldier was gone, he began to look sorrowfully
for him. The soldier was a great favourite, and was always put
to sleep under Sonnie's pillow. Who was to sleep there now,
if he could not be found? But Sonnie looked in vain, even
with nurse to help. They could not see him, although he was
lying among the grass stalks close by, peeping in at a hole, as
if he were amusing himself very well. And it was not dull for
the soldier; for inside the crack was an ants' town, something
like one which he had once watched when abroad-for he was a
Swiss soldier, and had been born in a country village near
Geneva, where the stock of wood from which he had been cut
once grew.
Wonderful indeed were the ant-hills .in that country!
They had rooms in them, one built above another, just like the
stories of a house, with passages, and galleries, leading upstairs,
downstairs, and to my lady's chamber. Some of the ants were
masters, and some were servants. The masters went out to
fight battles with other armies of ants-and what do you think
those fights were for? Why, just for the sake of stealing each
others' babies !
This is how it came about. In this foreign ant-hill the
ants were not able to do anything but fight-no, not even to
feed themselves; so their plan was to steal young ones from the
other nests near by, so that they might bring them up as their
slaves. Of course, the ants whose babies were stolen came out
to fight for them, and to prevent it if they could; and so some
terrible tussles followed sometimes-two ants catching hold of
the same baby and tugging different ways I
But the slaves, once stolen and carried home, were treated
very kindly, and did not even know that they were captives, for







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when they were brought from their own ant-hill they were too
young to notice anything. The conquerors carried the stolen
baby ants in their mouths and put them into nurseries where
they would be taken care of by the grown-up slave ants already
in the nest, carried off sometime before, to be brought up as
servants; whose work it was to put food into their masters'
mouths and help in all the work except fighting. The baby
ants were at once carried upstairs by these, washed and taken
care of.
English ants had no slaves; but the soldier could see that
they took quite as much care of their own children, though they
were so much smaller themselves than the foreign ants. They
were busy, when the wooden soldier looked in, carrying them
into an upper room, because that morning there had been a
shower, and the nurse ants thought that it might be damp for
their charges down below; so these careful little people had
carried them all up into a higher
story, and would be sure to carry .
them down again when they found the
sunbeams too hot. It was a pleasant
peep-show for the soldier to watch,
with his one eye pressed close to the '.... *
crack. He noticed that the nurse-
maid ants licked the eggs all over by
way of washing them; this was all
they had to do for the mere eggs, but some which were
hatched had to be carefully fed as well. On what? Ah I
now the soldier saw something quite as strange as he could
have seen in any foreign parts. He saw that these little
yellowish dots of creatures actually kept insects smaller than
themselves, just as we keep cows, even rearing them inside their
own nest from eggs which they hunted for and found, that they






THE SEVEN LITTLE BASKETS.


might feed themselves and their babies on a sweet juice which
the ant cows gave, as a cow gives milk. Sometimes they took
their cows out to pasture, sometimes kept them in the nest,
according to the time of year. If the soldier, or anybody else,
were to tell you this you would scarcely believe him; it sounds
so like a make-up, yet it is quite true, that he saw a little ant
come out whose business it was, with many others, to drive
home the cows belonging to the ant-town, from a daisy plant
close by, where they were feeding. She milked her cows by
stroking them gently with her antennae or horns, and was very
kind and careful of them.
Away went this useful ant, up and down, in and out among
the daisy roots, one would have thought that she was only
running about with nothing to do; but all the whiles she was
minding the cows for the family at home, and looking for the
eggs of more aphides, as the ant cows are called, to carry home.
Soon she went into the nest again, for the yellow ants are not
great rovers, but like to be near their ant-hill.
Then a tiny brown ant came travelling by; she was from a
nest under the hedge. Regular passages, like tunnels, led up
to it through the grass, along which hundreds of ants were
always passing to and fro on different errands, mostly in search
of something to take home for dinner-as the brown ants are
great hunters, and do not depend on keeping cows at home so
much as the yellow ants do. Some of these little fellows were
digging a ditch which was to make some new hunting-ground
more easy to reach; and this they did more quickly and cleverly
than any workman would have made a road, although they had
neither spades nor wheelbarrows to help them. They rolled up
the clay into neat little balls as they worked, and piled these
clay bricks up into a tiny wall on each side of the trench as they
scooped it out, instead of leaving the litter all strewing about







THE SEVEN LITTLE BASKETS.


the place to get into other people's way. Presently the little
brown ant ran up close to the soldier's face, and touched it with
two little horns which were branching out from its head, as if to
say, "Well, who are you ?"
Now to tell the truth, the soldier was rather sticky from
having been in Sonnie's pocket, with the lump of sugar-candy,
after Sonnie had been sucking it.
This little ant was very fond of sweet stuff, as all ants are,
and she soon smelt, or found out somehow, that the wooden
soldier had sugar upon him, and began to lick it off.
I must carry a mouthful of this to the children at home,"
said the little ant; so she scraped up as much as she could hold
between her jaws and ran off with it. Soon she came back with
a whole string of friends after her; they all set to work at the
soldier. First they ran all over him, trying whether it would
be possible to carry him back to the nest bodily, for they
thought that he might be made of sugar all through. But
they found that all their shoving, hauling, pulling, and pushing
would not stir him.
Next they began to try the plan of biting him to bits that
they might carry him piecemeal, but he was too tough; so at
length they all set to work to make the best of him where he
was, as a fine feast, but soon found out that he was only good
to eat outside, that the nice sweet candy was soon gone, and
then they left the soldier in peace and quiet. Except that one
little ant-the first which had come-lingered behind to get a
nap in a snug little hole under his wooden arm. There she lay,
tucked in, till she was quite rested, when she woke up and
started on her travels again, running very fast, but keeping an
eye always open for stray scraps of food to be carried back to
the young ones-a bit of a dead wasp, a grass-grain, or a taste
of honey, anything almost that she could find.






THE SEVEN LITTLE BASKETS.


And presently she came across something which in ant-
land is considered a great dainty, a dead fly. This was a great
catch. The little ant was so pleased at what she had found
that she danced three times round the body on her hind legs,
before she ran up and caught hold of it between her strong
jaws. The fly was not large, yet it was a dozen times as big as
the ant; and with all her tugging and pushing she could only
just manage to make it rock to and fro. She got on the top
and pulled, she ran to the front and dragged, she went behind
and shoved, she even butted at the fly, and tried to roll it along
by putting her head underneath, but it was all of no use; to
trundle the treasure all the way to her ant-hill was a thing not
to be done, but what a prize to lose! She stood and twiddled
her horns while one could count six, as if she were making up
her mind what to do, then started off very fast underneath the
grass and raced home. The soldier saw her run into the nest
to tell all the other ants about the fly; but they did not talk
with voices, they touched each others' horns like dumb people
when they'speak on their fingers, and that was quite enough.
Eight of them set off at once with the first ant, who took the
lead to show the way, and they marched along till they came up
to the fly. Tug, tug, they went, and managed to roll the fly
over on its back, that was all. Heave ho, they went at it again,
and turned it over on one side, but it was plain to each one that
they would never get their booty home at that rate.
They stopped and held a council. After much shaking of
horns one of them suddenly pounced on the fly and bit off its
head. The others followed this example, sawing off a leg, a
wing, and so on, working with such sharp jaws that at last
there was nothing left but the bare carcase of the fly, not worth
taking away, which they fell upon and gobbled up that no-
thing might be wasted. After the meal they all set off in a







THE SEVEN LITTLE BASKETS.


procession towards home, each carrying his load-a limb of the
fly.
How easily and pleasantly these little things had done the
job by helping all together !
They deserved the welcome .which they received from the
rest of their companions as they all filed in at the door of the
nest with their burdens-that was clear to the soldier's eye.
He was still gazing in at the hole with that one, although the
other one looked right away over the field, for the soldier's eyes
were set all askew in his head. If the toymaker had not
painted them quite crooked he would not have been able to see
two ways at once, which shows that there is an advantage even
in having a squint, if one knows how to turn things to account.
But just as the soldier was looking with the other eye at a
stream of brown ants coming out of the nest at some distance
off, something very unpleasant happened to himself.
Somebody.stepped upon him!
"This is not at all a fitting thing for me-a soldier, and a
man of honour-to allow myself to be trampled on! said he.
It was all very well to make fine speeches, but he was obliged to
bear it.
The foot, however, which had been set upon him was a
very small and light one; it was that of a little girl who was
crossing the field on her way to a thatched cottage by the road-
side beyond the field. Although she was small and slight, she
had with her a very heavy bag, which seemed to be full of
round things, like balls, for you could see them poking against
the sack-cloth, and making it bulge out.
There were potatoes inside the sack, and this poor little
girl had been sent to fetch them by her mother, who lay ill in
bed unable to go herself.
Having no husband to work for her and her children, they






THE SEVEN LITTLE BASKETS.


were obliged to do the best they could for themselves when she
was laid by-which often happened; and now little Mary, the
eldest, was quite like a small mother or nurse to the rest. A


-J-"


*, ,;c4
r* '


neighbour had promised to give these potatoes to the poor
people at the cottage if they would send for them; and as
Mary's mother had no garden of her own, and she and the







THE SEVEN LITTLE BASKETS.


children often tasted nothing for the day but bread, they were
glad enough of the present.
Brave little Mary had gone to fetch this half-a-sackful, and
she had managed to get it along somehow so far. But oh,
what a weight it had been for her young, tender back to bear I
-and when it ached so much from the burden that she could
endure the pain no longer, she had tried trailing the bag along
the ground instead, only to find that it hurt her poor hands still
more; for they were small and weak, and the rough sack-cloth
almost rubbed the skin off them in time. Mary had hardly
carried the potatoes half way home yet, and now she felt as if
she could not drag them another step!
She it was who had walked upon the wooden soldier and
hurt his'feelings without knowing it; and now she sat down on
the ground not far from where he was lying, and leaving the
sack, a great, sulky-looking heap, on the grass beside her, she
covered her face with her hot, sore hands, and could not help
crying just a little.
When she had set out that morning she had felt so happy
and glad to be able to do something for her sick mother !-and
she had meant to boil a dish of the potatoes for dinner; for
although Mary was a little child in years, she was quite a
woman in some ways. Sle knew it would tempt her mother
to eat some, if they were nicely mashed with a sprinkle
of pepper and salt, and a bit of the nice butter which the
farmer's wife had sent down. That was what mother
could always fancy when she could touch nothing else; and
now Mary was afraid she would never get back with the
potatoes.
Besides, there was Baby Joe left at home forever so long
with only the youngest boy to mind him-he was sure to cry;
as soon as he had seen Mary going he had taken his thumb







THE SEVEN LITTLE BASKETS.


out of his mouth and prepared his face to begin, what must it
be by this time?
She jumped up again and began to pull at the heavy sack
-but, oh, dear! she could not even heave it up on to her
shoulder so as to begin carrying it, and, at last, when she
swung it with all her might it came down on her back with
such a thump as to nearly knock her down. Her knees
trembled under her, and she was obliged to let it slide down
again. What should she do? Mary sat still to think. Sup-
posing that she were to take out some of the potatoes and run
home with them leaving the rest on the ground, and then come
back for more? That was a bright idea. But then supposing
that some thief were to steal the others while she was gone-
bag and all ?-and the sack was not hers. It had to be
returned. The kind neighbour who had given the potatoes
had made her promise to bring back the sack at once; for he
was a poor man himself, and wanted it, for he had not many.
Mary stood up and looked round. A little way off she
could see Ally and Delly, Rosie and Posie, Meg and Peg, all
playing at tisty-tosties with the cowslip balls which nurse had
made, while Sonnie, who had forgotten all about the soldier,
was sitting close by, making, a sceptre by sticking daisies on a
thorny branch.
How happy and careless they all looked I They knew
nothing about the cares of the tiny, troubled woman, who was
gazing so sadly, first at their merry game, and then at the heavy
sack on the grass which she could not carry.
Just then Mary's eyes caught a glimpse of something
bright among the clover leaves; this was the brilliant red coat
of the soldier, who, of course, had a handsome uniform and
was proud of it, as it is the nature of some soldiers to be, even
when a dazzling coat is not the only reason why they enlist.







THE SEVEN LITTLE BASKETS.


"What a pretty soldier How Joey would like it!"
thought little Mary, and she remembered how Baby Joe at
home had nothing but an oyster shell and three shrivelled
acorns to play with. But then it came into her head that the
soldier must belong to somebody. "To the children over
there," she whispered to herself, and began to creep shyly
towards the gay group, holding out the toy without saying
a word.
"Why, it's Sonnie's soldier!" cried Ally; but she did not
say anything else because she was so surprised to see a little
girl in such an old, ragged dress, looking so tired, and sad and
forlorn. She had never seen any little girls like that before, for
there were none where she had lived in India; so she stood
looking at her with a sort of sorrowful wonder.
Then Delly and the others came running up, with Sonnie
too; and he snatched his soldier in his great hurry, while the
rest stood all round, with their fingers in their mouths, staring
at the strange little figure of Mary-a new kind of little girl.
Sonnie ran to show his soldier to nurse.
"You should say 'Thank you' to the kind little girl!"
said she, as she looked at Mary. Who are you, my dear?"
Then, as Mary looked up at nurse's face and saw what a
kind one it was, and how the corners of her mouth turned up,
a thought came into her head. If you please, I'm Mary," she
said, and would you please to mind the bag a minute while I
runs home with some 'taties, 'cause it's heavy, and I can't get
it no farther-and I've got a baby at home "
Here little Mary could not help one tear from trickling
down her face for fear nurse should say No."
The other children looked more surprised than ever to see
the little girl cry. Had she lost her toys or eaten too many
sweets? It must be something of that sort they supposed, for






THE SEVEN LITTLE BASKETS.


they had- never known any little girls who cried in India except
for reasons of that kind.
"What is it, my. child? I don't understand. What
bag?" said nurse, gently.
Little Mary took nurse, leading her by one corner of her
shawl, and showed her the sack with the potatoes in it; and
nurse said she would gladly see that no one stole the rest, while
Mary ran home with as many as she could carry.
But you will never get them all home before nightfall at
that rate," said nurse, as poor little Mary loaded her arms with
a pile of potatoes, which nearly all rolled away again as she
tried to stack them up. She could not think of any other way
to carry them, for her flimsy frock was too thin and tattered to
hold anything so heavy.
"You had best empty all out and take the bag!" nurse
called after her, but Mary did not hear; she was already
running fast with as many as she could manage to grasp.
"The poor little thing will be quite worn out with running
backwards and forwards said nurse, half to herself.
"What is it, nurse?" said Ally, coming up. "Why is the
little girl crying ?"
"What does she want to do?" said Delly.
Can't she carry her bag?" said Rosie.
I wish we could help her! said Posie.
Let us try! said Meg.
I believe I could carry it! said Peg.
Me tarry it," said Sonnie !
Everybody laughed at this, for Sonnie toddled up to the
big bag and gave a great tug which only made him roll over
on to the soft turf giggling with glee.
Ally gave a pull, but could only move the bag an arm's
length; then Delly tried, next Rosie and Posie came to help.







THE SEVEN LITTLE BASKETS.


Between them they carried the load a short distance, but
found it an impossible matter to manage a bag between four of
them; they kept tumbling up against one another and could get
no proper hold of it at all, especially as Meg, Peg, and Sonnie ran
along shoving behind and tripping themselves and everybody
else up.
They all laughed till they felt quite weak, and were obliged
to let the bag fall. It split, and upset a lot of the potatoes-
they looked at one another quite disappointed.
Now-whether it was the wooden soldier in Sonnie's
pocket who had learnt from the little ants how to manage when
a heavy load was to be carried, and put it into Sonnie's head,
or whether the idea came of its own accord, I cannot say; but
he suddenly sprang up with a shout of joy and came to the
rescue.
Mine bastik!" cried he, and running to fetch it he began
to fill it with the spilt potatoes. Aha! that was the way! the
seven little baskets.
Ally and Delly, Rosie and Posie, Meg and Peg ran for
their's, and in five minutes' time they had divided the potatoes
between them. Oddly enough they found that each heap
would exactly fit a basket!
How pleased the children were! and by the time that little
tired Mary had reached the cottage, given a drink of milk to her
sick mother, and after cuddling Baby Joe, who was roaring
dreadfully for her, had set out to run again and fetch the next
lot of potatoes, the helpers were more than half way across the
meadow. She met a long row of six little girls, each with her
basket full, while nurse came behind with the sack, helping
Sonnie to carry his share, which he had soon found too heavy
for him.
Little Mary curtseyed and smiled so prettily that nurse







THE SEVEN LITTLE BASKETS.


was obliged to give her a kiss; and then she went in to see the
sick woman and Baby Joe. The cottage looked poor and bare
enough, yet how clean and tidy little Mary contrived to keep it I
besides taking care of everybody.
I don't know what I should do without the child! She's
everything to me, and more!" said the poor mother, looking
fondly at her, and speaking as if there were only one child in
the world.
When nurse and the children went home that morning
they told Uncle Sam and Mrs Rummage about, the poor folk at
the cottage, and about brave little Mary.
After that the seven little baskets went to and fro almost
every day filled with nice things, and toys-not by themselves,
but carried each by a child who liked nothing she had ever done
in India half so well as going to the cottage and comforting the
people who were in trouble.
Uncle Sam sent Mrs Rummage to see Mary's mother, and
he went afterwards himself to find out what could be done to
make the cottage more dry and warm, and to help the poor
widow and her children.
So it was a lucky day for little Mary when the wooden
soldier spied so carefully into the ants' ways! What a good
thing it is to be trained as a military man, and to,form watchful
habits! If he had not kept a careful look-out, perhaps Sonnie
and the rest would never have discovered how easily seven
willing little pairs of hands can carry the weight which would
crush one poor pair of shoulders!
"It is all owing to me and my regimentals!" said the
soldier, as he was turning in to barracks for the night under
Sonnie's pillow; "all the credit is mine! "
But I think it was the clever little ants who deserved the
most praise; although they wore sober brown coats instead of
blazing red ones.































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Cousin Catherine's servants.

More servants wait on man
Than he'll take notice of.
-HERBERT.

NE morning mother came into the room where her little
girl was playing and whispered something to nurse.
Edith could not hear anything but the'words "my
,Cousin Catherine's" just at the end-but they made her look
up with sparkling eyes, for she thought that mother was telling
nurse to take her there for the day, as she had often done before
-only why did mother whisper? Edith was just dressing her
dolly in some new clothes which nurse had made. She pre-
tended that Rose had grown out of the last; but really and
truly the old ones were obliged to be burnt, because poor Rose
had been dropped into the gutter the day before. She was
trying to squeeze her dolly's china arms into the sleeves, which
were rather too small, and forgot to listen any more to what
mother and nurse were saying.
Then mother came up and kissed her, saying, Edith, you
are to go to Cousin Catherine's at the cottage for a day, and
perhaps if you are very good she will let you stay there and
sleep. Would you like that ?"
Edith began to jump about for joy, almost before mother
had done speaking, and then she stopped, for she thought of
how she had never been to bed in all her life without her dear
mother to come and see her before she went to sleep; and so
she said, I don't want to stay there in the night."
D






COUSIN CATHERINE'S SERVANTS.


But listen, dear," mother went on. At first I whispered,
because I thought I would not tell you anything to make you
sorry just as you are going away; but I think you are old
enough to know. Baby Alice is ill, and I wish you to go and
stay with Cousin Catherine for a little while until I see whether
she is going to be very much worse or not. If she became
really ill you might be ill too if you stayed here, and it makes
poor mother anxious to think of it. Be a good little girl, and
the time will go very quickly. Now good-bye, darling! I must
hurry away."
But couldn't I kiss Baby Alice first?" said Edith, her lip
quivering a little; "because last night I gave her the worst
sweet-the yellow one instead of the red one-when father gave
me one for her and one for me! Oh, how I wish I hadn't done
it! "
Never mind, dearie; another time you will be able to give
Baby the best sweet, and then you will not be unhappy after.
Cheer up, my pet! After saying a few words more to nurse
about packing Edith's things, and giving one more kiss to her
little daughter, who was trying bravely not to cry, mother went
back as fast as she could to Baby Alice, while nurse set to work
at putting Edith's things together.
Now, Miss Edith," she said, popping her head in at the
nursery door, "which of all your toys do you want to take? I
shouldn't take any if I were you-you won't need them there-
you will find plenty to amuse you."
But Edith could not part from Florence, her oldest dolly,
although she was spoilt (not in the same way that little girls
sometimes are). She had fallen down the stairs and knocked
her nose off, as well as having cracked her chin at the same
time; so that Edith was obliged to cuddle her a great deal when
she picked her up, and say, Never mind, my darling Florence






COUSIN CATHERINE'S SERVANTS.


I shall love you just the same." Yet the little girls from next
door said such horrid things about her that Edith never took
her out again when they were coming in to spend the day. But
she never forgot to say to Florence the evening before, Now,
my dearest Florence, to-morrow I am going to put you away.
You won't mind, will you ? And the day after I will take you
out and play with you more than ever."
Nurse did not want Florence to go, because she took up so
much room; and she called her "a lumbering, rubbishing old
scarecrow." Edith hoped Florence did not hear; but she was
put in at last, and soon the carriage came round to the door.
Nurse, Edith, and Florence in the trunk were soon spinning
down the carriage-drive.
Cousin Catherine lived in the very sweetest little cottage at
the other end of the park, about five miles from Edith's home.
It was the greatest pleasure that the children had to spend a
day with her; she was the dearest old lady, with white hair and
spectacles, and everybody called her "Cousin Catherine" with-
out exactly knowing whose cousin she was.
This had puzzled Edith at first, because her other cousins
were all little boys and girls of about her own age; and when
she heard that a new cousin was coming to live all alone in the
little thatched cottage at the park gate, Edith had wondered in
her own mind how a little girl could have a house to herself
like that.
But won't she have a nurse?" she had asked father; but
he only said, "What notion has the child got into her head?"
and laughed as he stroked her hair.
Edith had longed very much to go and see this wonderful
new cousin, but when she reached the thatched cottage there
was only a sweet-faced old lady in spectacles standing in the
doorway, underneath the honeysuckle and roses, waiting for her.







COUSIN CATHERINE'S SERVANTS.


A white pigeon was sitting on her shoulder, while several more
were fluttering and wheeling about her head; a dear little woolly
lamb lay at her feet, and a cat with three kittens was licking
her paws on the doorstep.
But where is my cousin ?" Edith had run up to say, and
then the old lady had stooped kindly down to kiss her, saying
in a soft voice, "I am your cousin, dear. I suppose you thought
that cousins must always be little and young? Well, I am an
old woman, but I am your father's cousin, and yours too, and
perhaps you will learn to love me a little, though I am old."
Ever since that day Edith had loved her Cousin Catherine
more and more each time that she saw her; and she liked the
cocks and hens and the pretty cow with a bell tied to her neck
which fed in a meadow, and Cousin Catherine's pet lamb, and
all the other free, happy creatures which she liked to have living
near her.
Edith did not love her at all less because she was not a
little girl.
On the morning when nurse, Edith, and her dolly reached
the door of her little thatched house, Cousin Catherine was very
much surprised to see them. Nurse told Edith she might run
round and look at the chickens while she spoke to the old lady
alone; and then she told her how Edith's mother feared that
her baby Alice was going to be ill from fever, and that she
begged Cousin Catherine to keep Edith with her until she had
sent for the doctor, who would tell her whether it was safe for
Edith to come back or not. And my mistress told me to say,
ma'am, that she would send over one of the servants to take
care of Miss Edith, only she said I was to ask you first, in case
of your not wishing it."
No, thank you, nurse," said Cousin Catherine laughingly.
No more servants for me; they are more plague than profit-







COUSIN CATHERINE'S SERVANTS. 53

all but a few old good and true ones like yourself, only I am
afraid there are none left nowadays. No, we shall do very well
as we are."
Nurse smiled and said, "Mistress said .*l --
she knew your ways, ma'am, and so she '' .
did not send one."
"I have quite as many servants as
I want, I can assure you, nurse," said
Cousin Catherine with another smile.
As she said these last words Edith came dancing round
the corner to fetch Florence out of the box, for she wanted to
show her the pig which was grubbing for pignuts at the edge
of the wood, and to play a game at wild beasts with him and
her dolly, pretending that the pig was a hippopotamus. She
was just in time to catch Cousin Catherine's last words, about
having as many servants as she needed.
"Why, Cousin Catherine, where are they?" she said.
"There isn't any room in here. Oh, what a dear little house
it is, just like playing at having a hut. But where are all your
servants, Cousin Catherine? I have only seen an old woman
sitting at the kitchen window round at the back, peeling
potatoes, and she asked me how many pairs of boots I wore
out in a week, running about like that, and I 'said I didn't
know."
"That is Mrs Jones, who comes in to cook my dinners,
and scrub my floors," said Cousin Catherine. She lives over
there in the wood close by, and that is her pig which you saw.
Her husband milks my cow for me, and she makes the butter.
But she is not the only servant I have. A great many servants
wait on me, oh, an immense number, more than you can count
if you tried. They work hard for me, or else I shouldn't have
anything to eat or to use."







COUSIN CATHERINE'S SERVANTS.


"Where are they? Where do they go to bed?" said
Edith, looking all round her, as they stood on the threshold.
"Come!" said Cousin Catherine. I will tell you about
all my servants at some other time; but now, while the sun
is shining, I think you had much better be running about out-
side. A long while ago I could have run about with you, but
now you see I can only walk slowly. Once I was a little girl
and wore out boots, like you- "
Oh, you can't have been!" said Edith, looking up into
Cousin Catherine's face-for she did not look as if she ever
could have been young, and Edith had thought of it before.
"I was really," said Cousin Catherine, "and now I will
tell you something still harder to believe. If you live long
enough, one day you will be an old woman like me. So go
and run about while you can, and be as merry and happy as
the days are long. Do you see that big black cloud frowning
over there? That will bring rain before long; then if we have
to stay indoors I will tell you some stories of my servants-
of a few at least-tell you where they live, and all I know about
them. You had better not go far away from the house, for one
of them has just told me that the rain will begin soon."
I didn't see anyone," said Edith, or hear anyone."
"Perhaps not, but I did," said Cousin Catherine.
Edith went away to play, very anxious to know about
Cousin Catherine's servants. For perhaps one of them will
put me to bed," she said to herself, "and so it will be a good
thing to know whether she is cross or not."
It was very pleasant in the field. The pig ran away when
the little girl and her dolly wanted to play with him; but Edith
said that did not matter, for she thought it was just what a real
hippopotamus would have done, only she wished he would have
torn up the ground a little more.


54






COUSIN CATHERINE'S SERVANTS.


But it was not long before the rain really did begin.
So that servant was right," said Edith, as she snatched
up Florence and ran into the house. It was snug and so pretty
inside, there were bright curtains and a smooth polished floor
with straw mats here and there; beautiful pictures hung on the
walls, which Cousin Catherine had painted herself. She could
draw anything she liked so quickly and easily that it made one
laugh with pleasure to see her do it. She often amused the
children for hours together by her drawings when they came to
see her; for she could make up story pictures about little boys
and girls, giants and fairies, or birds and flowers, or hens or
tigers, anything that the children asked for: it was all the same
to those clever fingers. She would write down words under-
neath each and pretend that the people in the picture were
telling the tale themselves. Oh, it was no hardship to spend
a whole long wet day at Cousin Catherine's and she never got
tired of it herself; as long as she had a pencil in her hand she
seemed to be quite happy and to forget that she was old.
I do believe your pencil does it of itself! said Edith to
her once. Let me try."
But when Edith held it the horses' legs came all wrong;
the bodies of the animals were mere lumps, and nothing was
pretty or nice; so it couldn't have been only the pencil after all.
She was half glad to hear the rain pelting down when Cousin
Catherine took her hat off and told her to sit down beside her
at the table, where a great many pieces of paper lay ready, with
a pencil. It was so much more delightful in the house she
thought, as the splashing became louder and louder outside.
It won't be dinner-time for tw6 hours," said Cousin
Catherine; "so, now, look here. I will make some drawings
of my servants, since you are so anxious to know what they are
like-shall I? And first of all you asked, 'Where do they







COUSIN CATHERINE'S SERVANTS.


sleep?' Why, some of my servants sleep in the stables, some
in the trees, some in the fields, others in farmyards or folds."
Edith opened her eyes very wide.
Now, look here. These are the servants who bring me
my breakfast every morning. But I will draw them first and
tell you about them after."
Cousin Catherine took six pieces of paper and began to
sketch quickly. She drew and drew as fast as possible, so that
the things seemed to grow up in a minute under her fingers.
In about half an hour the six pieces of paper were well filled in,
each with a picture of its own, the name written at the top.
And what do you think the six pictures were? They were
groups of animals great and small; some were creatures which
Edith knew very well, such as cows, sheep, and horses; others
seemed to be small insects. She did not know what others
were called.
But where are the servants ? she said.
Here. These are the servants, for instance; that brings
me my breakfast," said Cousin Catherine, taking up the first
picture. "We could not possibly have any breakfast to-morrow
morning without these."
Edith looked at the slip of paper. On it was drawn a cow,
a hen, and several long teams of horses, some ploughing, others
drawing waggons. In one corner stood a beehive with a swarm
of bees going in and out of it.
"Oh, I know what you mean! cried Edith, clapping her
hands. I know what a cow does very well; it brings me milk
for my breakfast. But the others, we don't want horses and a
hen for breakfast! "
Don't we ? Some people like an egg for their breakfast,"
said Cousin Catherine. I fancy you would like to have one
to-morrow, perhaps, if the kind hen will spare you one, to eat







COUSIN CATHERINE'S SERVANTS.


with your bread, and the butter and milk from the cow. You
can't, have an egg without a hen to lay it, you know."
But horses ?" Edith went on. I don't want a horse at
breakfast-time. Why did you draw so many? "
"You will do without bread at your breakfast then ?" said



.. v. 1 t


















', ; ,/ "', ,, ','.. '



Cousin Catherine. "You cannot have bread unless the land is
ploughed, the corn carried to and from the mill. How is this
to be done if there are no horses ? "
But I saw them ploughing the flat field by the church
with a steam engine," said Edith.







COUSIN CATHERINE'S SERVANTS.


"They do sometimes, but not always," said Cousin
Catherine. But even when they plough without horses they
cannot carry home the corn by steam; the baker cannot bring
the loaves round to the door in a steam engine."
S"-But why is a bee-hive here, and what are all those birds
doing up in the air?"
"You don't want honey for your breakfast, then? If you
do, the bee must get it. No one else can; once, I believe, a
man did try, and it took him months to do what a bee could do
in an hour."
"Why? said Edith.
"Well, in the first place, the man could not fly; then he
had great clumsy fingers and tools instead of the marvellous
trunk of a bee. He soon found out that it was the bee's place
to collect the honey, and his to eat it after.
"As to these birds, if it were not for them many a field of
corn or turnips would be wasted. That is why they are put
into the picture. When the corn is ripe they do eat some;. that
is quite true; but then all through the winter and early spring
they go on feeding on insects which would devour five or six
times as much corn as the little birds do themselves. The
farmer does not think of that, or else he would be ready to
spare them a handful of the corn which they have saved for
him.
"There is no room to put into the picture all the other
creatures which help the corn to grow. There are earthworms,
for instance. We shouldn't like to see one on the breakfast
table, and yet they help to get the food ready. If it were not
for the holes they make in the ground the grain would not grow
nearly so well, perhaps not at all.
"Once the sea came and washed over a piece of land,
killing all the earthworms; afterwards that piece of land would







COUSIN CATHERINE'S SERVANTS.


not grow corn or anything else, until more earthworms came to
live in it by degrees.
"But there is no time to count up all the servants that
help in this matter; these are a few. We will look at the next
picture now."
Oh, what a lot of things this one has in it! said Edith.
"There is quite a crowd! I see a sheep, and more horses, and
such a pretty little thing like a squirrel-and a great bird that
walks and cannot fly; I forget its name, but the bird is taller
than a horse, and it seems
to run faster than they can.
O, Cousin Catherine, they are -r
running a race, aren't they!
and the bird is in front? "
It is an ostrich. It can
run faster than the quickest in hi
horse. It is of no use for
people to try to outstrip it.
The people who hunt them
play tricks on the poor ostrich.
A black man dresses himself up in a bunch of feathers to look like
an ostrich as much as he can. He smears something over his
legs to make them white like the bird's, stalks about, pretends to
feed, using his arm like the creature's neck, and doing as nearly
as possible what he sees the real ostriches do. He creeps as
close as he can to a herd of them, in hopes that the birds will
mistake him for one of themselves. At last when he is near
enough, he takes out, a bow and arrows which he has kept
hidden all the time, and shoots one, or two if he can, before the
rest find him out and run away."
"Why does he shoot the poor ostrich?"
"What is that which I saw in your hat, Edith, that pretty
white thing ctirled round it?"







COUSIN CATHERINE'S SERVANTS.


"A feather," said Edith. Did that come from an ostrich ?
Perhaps it dropped off and they picked it up," she :added; for
she did not like to think that such a great, grand bird should be
killed only that she might have a feather in her hat.
"It might have been picked up," said Cousin Catherine,
"for in South Africa they have ostrich farms; and they do not
kill the birds to get their feathers, but collect those that are
dropped. This is a picture of the servants that bring clothes
for us to wear, you see-the ostrich brings us a feather, which
does not seem much."
"What a big nest it must sit upon!" said Edith; "and
how does it find a tree large enough? And can it sing? What
a great song it must sing! '
It would be a great song," said Cousin Catherine, but it
doesn't sing, it makes a sort of roar. It builds no nest, but
lays its eggs in a heap of sand, fourteen or fifteen at a time.
The sun is so hot in the land where the ostriches live that the
warm beams hatch the eggs. The mother need only sit on
them at night; but she and the father ostrich take great care
of their babies when they are hatched. The eggs have a very
strong shell; one of them would be a good meal for five people,
and afterwards the shell makes a useful cup. The Arabs cover
them with basket-work and carry them on their journeys to
drink from."
"What does the ostrich eat ?" said Edith.
"Anything he can get," said Cousin Catherine. He will
even swallow great stones, and all sorts of queer things. Once
I read a story about an old woman who was very anxious to see
some ostriches. She had never seen one, and several were to
be shown at the small town near which she lived. So she
locked up her cottage, and taking the door-key in her hand she
set off. When she came to the place where the ostriches were







COUSIN CATHERINE'S SERVANTS.


walking about, she was very pleased to see them, and one of
them seemed very glad to see the old woman, for he walked
close up to her as if to say, 'How kind of you to come!-is that
thing in your hand some little dainty for me?' and in an instant
he had snatched the door-key away and swallowed it! So the
old lady could not get into her house when she got back without
breaking into it like a thief; she said she never wanted to go
and see any wild beasts again.
Now look at the sheep. He is not so large and hand-
some as the ostrich, yet he is a far more useful servant, although
he is only kind enough to give us his old clothes when he has
done with them. We should shiver in our beds, and be cold all
day in winter too, without the wool which the shears cut from
his back."
"But what is that thing like a shell? and this like a
caterpillar?" asked Edith. "And horses again! What use
are they for dressing people ? "
What are those pretty little shining buttons made of in
your cuff? A sea creature gives its shell to make those. And
these other buttons, on your dress, are made of bones, and
coloured afterwards. Perhaps they are made from the bone of a
horse, or sheep. The horses are wanted for carrying too. That
caterpillar is meant for a silk-worm. I could not have my satin
gown, or you your pretty red sash without him. Then for the
leather of our boots-for the soles as well as the top parts,-we
must have the skins of animals."
"Let me see the next picture!" said Edith. "I can see
such a funny thing there It is all made up of great serpents-
they all seem to be going into a turnip! "
"Wait a moment; finish the other picture. You have
forgotten the pretty little creature like a squirrel," said Cousin
Catherine, "wearing that pretty gray silvery fur; I put him







COUSIN CATHERINE'S SERVANTS.


that you may see what pretty creatures must be killed if people
will have fur to wear-not only the fox, the bear, the monkey,
and a dozen others, but even this little fellow. He is called a
chinchilla. Look at his pretty bright eyes! He is quite harm-
less. When you grow up don't you wear the skins of animals
on your back! Woven dresses are much better; and nothing
need die to give you cotton or woollen clothes. Poor little soft
playful things! It is a pity to take a beautiful happy life away
for a silly reason, isn't it? Now for the next picture-the
turnip with serpents crawling into it, as you called it, is a
cuttle-fish. This picture has portraits in it of all the servants
that help me to paint."
"Why, there is a pig!" said Edith, "and a little thing
running along rather like a rat, only longer and thinner, and a
leaf with some grains sticking to it."
Piggy gives me his bristles to make this stiff white brush
for painting in oils," said Cousin Catherine, "and the soft,
reddish-brown brush is made from the hairs of that little
creature, called a sable. That leaf is from a coffee-plant; the
things upon it which look something like tiny tortoises, are
cochineal insects; and when they are dead and ground to
powder, they make this lovely crimson coloured paint called
carmine, brighter than the brightest deep-red rose. And this
strange creature with the round body and eight long arms,
which you mistook for serpents, is a cuttle-fish. He gives this
brown colour called sepia, which is very useful, though not so
pretty as carmine. He carries it inside this round bag, which
is his body, and squirts the dusky juice out into the water when
he is frightened, to darken it all round him so that-his enemy
cannot see him in the middle of the fog then. But the fisher-
men are quick, and manage to hook him out before he has time
to empty his bag."







COUSIN CATHERINE'S SERVANTS.


But that is only two of your paints," said Edith. "Who
made all the rest ? "
It would take too long to tell. Some are made of plants,
some of stones," said Cousin Catherine. "But I am much
obliged to piggy and all the other animals and plants that give
me my paints and brushes, for I should be very dull without
them. I should not know how to fill up my time."
Couldn't you play on the piano? "
Oh, yes; but not unless my servants were good enough
to help me. I can play on the violin too, that is, I could once.
But I could have no music from either, if an elephant, a horse,
and a silkworm did not do something towards it."
Can't you. play on the piano without an elephant?" said
Edith, and she laughed merrily. "Oh, Cousin Catherine, how
funny that is "
See, here in this other picture are the servants that help
about music."
"There are two elephants in the front," said Edith; "what
are they doing? And a silk-
worm up there-and, oh, what
a long tail that horse has got!"
"When I was a girl I saw
elephants at work like that in
India," said Cousin Catherine.
"They were picking up logs
of wood. They did it so well,
andworked so cleverly-lifting
the logs with their trunks, and .... ... .
stacking them neatly. Then
as soon as the pile became too tall, so that both elephants together
could not lift up the logs high enough to put them on the top,
they place two of the largest logs side by side to lean against







COUSIN CATHERINE'S SERVANTS.


the stack, and rolled the others up them with their tusks ; they
could push them up quite easily that way. The wood was
ebony-what the sharps and flats are made of in a piano. The
white notes are made of slices from the tusks of elephants; so
you see we could not have such nice smooth keys without these
big, patient servants. The strings of a violin are made from
the bodies of silkworms killed before they begin to spin; this
silver one is made of silken threads twisted round with fine
wire. As for the horse, he spares the long hairs from his tail
to make that part of the bow, which draws the music out. But
I think that Mrs Jones wants to lay the
cloth for our dinner-we must hurry over
g .. the last two pictures."
To-. "There is not much in this one; only a
goose, and some little round marbles growing
on a stem with a fly crawling on one of them,"
said Edith.
"The servants which bring me my pen and
ink when I want to write a letter," said Cousin Catherine. "The
goose gives me the quill feathers from her wing-she is very kind
too in letting me have the down from her breast for my pillow,
besides which her body can be eaten, and her fat is a cure for
the pains which poor old souls like me get in their joints, and
which go away sometimes when rubbed with 'goose-grease,' as
the country folk call it. Thank you, good goose, for many a
comfortable night's rest, many an ache driven away, and many a
pleasant hour spent in writing. But I must have ink as well as
a pen, and that little fly in the picture lays her eggs in a sort of
oak-tree. The sap from the bough runs out as the fly pricks a
hole to put her eggs into, and covers it all round, hardening
into a ball like an English oak gall, only this sort does not
grow here. The egg turns into a grub and lives inside the ball


64







COUSIN CATHERINE'S SERVANTS.


until it wants to change into a fly, when it bites a passage
through its prison, finds that wings have grown upon its back,
and flutters away to lay more eggs. The best ink is made from
these galls, though other things are sometimes used instead."
Now the last of all the pictures is come," said Edith with
a sigh, as Cousin Catherine took up the only one left, and said:
"You asked me how I knew that it would rain soon, and I
told you that a servant had whispered to me that a storm was
coming. That was the swallow which went shooting past close
to the ground. Now when the flies and small spiders which he
is chasing fly or float so near the ground that the swallow is
obliged almost to brush the grass with his wings before he can
catch any, it shows that the air is damp already from the coming
rain, and that their gauzy wings or webs are weighed down by
it. That was how I learnt from the swallow that rain was at
hand, and that the clouds were already making the air moist.
Then I saw a snail peep out of her house and venture her horns
and the tip of her tail outside; her skin could feel the cooling
rain; although it was a long way off still, she knew it was coming.
And the cat felt chilly in her back, for she was sitting as close as
she could get to the kitchen fire, turning it towards the heat."
"And what is that ugly toad doing?"
"What ugly toad ?" said Cousin Catherine. "I am sorry
I have drawn it badly. It could not be ugly ., '-
unless I had made it so in the drawing."
"John at home, the stable-boy, calls
them ugly," said Edith.
"Then I shouldn't copy John at ,
home, the stable-boy, if I were you,"
said Cousin Catherine. "When people are going to call any
creature ugly it would be wiser to stop a minute and remember
Who made it."







COUSIN CATHERINE'S SERVANTS.


I forgot that God made toads," said Edith in a low voice.
Now I think that a toad has a comical, laughable beauty
of its own," said Cousin Catherine; it is exquisitely made for
the life it has to lead. When* that one crept out just now,
because his skin told him that rain was coming and he would
soon have a refreshing bath, I watched his eyes. They were
more brilliant than this bright jewel in my ring, and his back
was covered with fine velvety markings, something like those of
a tabby cat. He is not nice to touch, because, as he is gentle
and harmless, without any other means of defending himself, he
is able to squeeze drops of liquid out of his skin which are not
pleasant to have about one's hands; but as the poor toad neither
bites, scratches, pecks, nor stings, one need hardly grudge him
this one way of keeping his enemies at a distance. He makes
himself nasty because he does not wish to be meddled with. I
think I have known people with tempers of that sort. Yet,
although this is all he can do to prevent himself from being
pulled about, silly people have invented lies about him, saying
that he spits out fire and poison. No dog will take a toad into
its mouth because of the acid taste of him ; but he does no other
harm to man or beast--not even that, unless disturbed and
worried. On the other hand, he does a great deal of good. I
keep one in my greenhouse to eat the flies and other creeping
things. He is tame and knows me quite well. Here he is in
the middle of the picture, among the other servants who give
me a hint of what sort of weather I may expect. Now, did you
count up how many servants I have got? I do not think you
could, yet I have not told you half. Another time perhaps I
will tell you about some more. But oh, dear! how I do wish
people would be kind to their servants, especially to the poor,
willing, hard-working horses,, without which they would be
puzzled how to get on at all."







COUSIN CATHERINE'S SERVANTS.


Edith was not glad when the rain cleared off, for she liked
staying indoors at Cousin Catherine's, listening to her stories or
watching her while she drew pictures.
When she went to bed that night Cousin Catherine helped
her to say her prayers, as mother was not there; and she taught
Edith to say a new prayer after she had finished her others.
It was: "0 Almighty God, our Heavenly Father, whose
tender mercy is over all Thy works, be graciously pleased to bless
all men, everywhere, and to put it into their hearts to be kind to
the innocent, helpless creatures which Thou hast given them to
be their faithful servants, for the sake of the Lamb of God, Thy
dear son, Jesus Christ Our Lord. Amen."
Edith remembered to say this prayer every night afterwards
at home, although she did not stay for many more days at the
thatched cottage.
She was sorry when the carriage came to take her away
from kind Cousin Catherine's, but how could she help being
glad too, as it was to bring her back to mother and dear little
Baby Alice?












tbe Umgiest One.

"I had a cat and a cat loved me,
And I fed my cat under a hollow tree;
My cat cried miew, miew, miew !
Everybody loves their cat, and I love my cat too."
-NURSERY RHYME.

Y sister Ruth and I were very fond of going to see the
farmer's wife, Mrs Hird, who lived out at the far end
~ of the village beyond the church; partly because she
had a tempting duck pond where we used to sail paper boats,
and partly because there were so many cats about her place that
one or other of them was sure to have kittens to be played with.
There were cats in the house and cats in the garden; cats in the
stable and cats in the barn; although these were long and
lanky, and always ran away from you if you tried to make
friends with them, instead of coming and butting against your
petticoats as the house cats did.
There were two specially lean and hungry looking cats
which lived in the chaff-house. They were mother and
daughter; and when they had kittens the kittens seemed
somehow to be born more knowing and grown up than the
roly-poly velvet indoor kitties.
Instead of being helpless, these little things would stagger
across the boards and try to play with one another's tails
almost before they could walk.properly, or even see-and would
catch rats bigger than themselves soon; while the house pussies
were sleeping all day, lapping milk and expecting their mothers
to wash their faces for them.
Ruth and I were fond of these kitties because no one else






THE UGLIEST ONE.


seemed to take much notice of them, and Ruth always picked
out things of that sort to pet. She would leave the pond and
the chickens and the lambs and go straight to the chaff-house
that she might have as long a time as possible there.
The full-grown mother and daughter cats were not allowed
to keep their babies for very long; indeed, if they had been
there would soon have been no room to hold them, there came
so many.
Once Mrs Hird was obliged to drown seven which she
found in a comfortable hole in the haystack; and Ruth cried all
the way home that day because she had seen them in a bucket;
but the little things were too young to feel any pain. The
eighth was left alive-but nobody knew who was the mother of
it, for the two chaff-house cats had it between them. Some-
times one would carry it about in her mouth, lick it and take
care of it, and sometimes the other, so that it was impossible to
settle whose it was.
But why are those two cats so thin and tall ? Ruth used
to ask pitifully-for they were not nice to cuddle; so bony;
even if you could have caught them.
It's with catching of rats, miss," Mrs Hird would say.
"They are excellent cats for catching of rats."
This accidental rhyme of Mrs Hird's used to please us
greatly-we. used to try to make her say it again, by leading the
conversation often up to the chaff-house cats.
As for their tempers, all I can say is that they were most
unkind to dogs; and we had to leave off taking Lassie and
Bounce and Mumps, our three dogs, up to the farm, because, if
one of them, on a sniffing expedition, happened in the most
innocent way to pass the chaff-house door, out would fly these
two indignant cats grinning and prancing in front of the dog,
and clawing at him in the most'unprovoked way, while even the






THE UGLIEST ONE.


kitten crumpled itself up and hissed in a whisper. The dogs
seldom came away without scratched noses, and never without
wounded feelings.
As I said, Ruth always chose the worst things. She used
to have toothache a great deal; and somehow at home we
always used to think that was the reason of it, I am sure I do
not know why.
To this very day, if I see a little girl with her face tied up,
looking pale, I always expect that she will take the smallest
apple out of the plate, and not make any fuss about having to
stay at home when all the others go out to enjoy themselves,
and that she will always like the oldest, raggedest dolls the best,
and never seem to care if she has to do disagreeable things.
I think we used to have this fancy because Ruth was so
brave about going to have a tooth out, it used to make us think
she felt things less than the rest of us should have done.
It was too bad, but we used to put all the unpleasant
errands on her to do; such as asking for things we almost knew
we might not have, and breaking the news when anybody had
upset the irk, and things of that sort. It was always "Ask
Ruth, she will do it! or Get Ruth to go, she won't mind."
I think Ruth did mind, only she bore the messages and
did the things just the same as if she didn't. She would give
one,little sigh, perhaps, and then go quite cheerfully.
It was one of the greatest griefs of Ruth's life that she was
not allowed to have a kitten of her own. Mother did not care
about cats, and father had broods of pheasant and partridge
chicks which were being reared in a yard behind the stable, and
pigeons too; so that we were only allowed one serious-minded
old cat called Griffin; who was so honest and altogether above
suspicion that he thought it a crime even to look at the chickens,
although he lived in the stable close by.







THE UGLIEST ONE. 71

He was fat enough for half-a-dozen cats; Mrs O'Flaningan,
the cook, who adored him, took care of that.


She thought it very hard that she was not allowed a cat in
her kitchen, but she was obliged to put up with a trap for the
mice instead, though she was always grumbling, Sorrow a bit,


4~-.~ipi I
n






THE UGLIEST ONE.


thin, can the machane sit in me lap and keep me company,"
while she was baiting it.
Griffin may have been an excellent cat" in his way, but
it certainly was not as a catcher of rats that he came out strong.
He would let them run squeaking about the stables under his
very whiskers without offering to hurt a hair of their heads.
One day Ruth and I were going to Mrs Hird's about some
raspberries which she was going to let cook have for jam. As
soon as we had seen Mrs Hird and told our errand Ruth said,
as usual, Let us go and see the excellent cats for catching of
rats." So we went up the chaff-house steps, and as there were
fresh clean bundles of straw, we sat down while Ruth hugged
the kitten. Both its mothers were out, and we were glad-they
came creeping up in such a curious half-frightened, half-angry
way if you touched their baby.
I really must say that it was anything but a pretty kitten;
and yet it had an odd, sweet little face that one liked almost
better than the ordinary perfect pansy-face of pussies without a
fault. It was partly tabby and partly white; but the tabbiness
left off in such funny places. Over one eye, for instance, it had
a sort of tabby frown which made it look very wise, and a
streak ran crookedly across its forehead, just missing the left
ear, while the other was dark. Its nose was black, and it had
splotches of tabby here and there on the rest of its body, with
quite a handsome tabby tail. If you were only to see its tail,"
Ruth used to say, "while I covered up the rest of it, you would
never guess what a surprise its body would be! "
Its eyes were blue from youngness, and had as yet a blank
stare; yet when Ruth rustled an ear of corn in front of it, one
feeble paw stole out and began to pat the dangling straw in
quite an old-world way.
Let's pretend things now," said Ruth, that was her






THE UGLIEST ONE.


favourite game; '.' Let us pretend that mother has told us we
may each bring home a kitten, and that Mrs Hird says we may
choose. Wait a minute, I'll go and fetch some more kittens;
no, I don't think I had better, because if the 'excellent cats'
came back they might not like it. Cats don't like other people's
kittens generally."
Now, Bessie, just think-pretending you know-would
you have that little white one with the blue eyes that we saw
sitting outside the front door, or the black one with yellow eyes
that was up the trellis-work, or one of those three tabbies that
were rolling together in the parsley bed? Or- "
"What's the good of pretending when you know we
mustn't have one ?" I said.
"Oh, but I like it! Ruth went on. "I can make it
seem quite real that I am going to take home a kitty-which do
you think I should have-if you won't have one? "
The ugliest, I suppose," said I, for I knew Ruth's ways
quite well.
How could you guess that, Bessie? Yes, I should," said
Ruth, kissing the kitten in her lap. And I do think you are
the ugliest, you little dear! Yes, I would have you. Oh, how
I wish I could just put it in my pocket and take it home! Do
you know, Bessie, the other morning, when my tooth hurt so in
the night and I was in bed, I rolled up a bit of the bedclothes
to be a kitty and I am almost sure I heard it purr, only it was
not quite the same as a real one. Yes, I should have you,
darling, because, you see, I am afraid people won't like you so
much because of your smudges; and the boys will throw stones
at you perhaps, and nobody will take care of you, you are so
ugly; but I love you."
The little kitten made a small rattle in its throat as if it
had suddenly found out that this world was meant to be purred in.






THE UGLIEST ONE.


If it only wasn't wrong to do things. without people's
knowing it! said Ruth after a moment's pause. This kitten
would go so easily into my pocket and we could keep it in the
doll's house and take it up to bed every night."
"It would grow up, you see," said I. It was always my
fate to spoil Ruth's plans. Besides, it would be certain to
miew, and Miss
Straitlace (that was
our governess)would
hear it-and besides,
.. Ruth, it is not nice
Siding things from
mother."
No," said Ruth,
S" getting up with a
b f sigh, and putting
Kitty into a nest of
hay, out of which it
instantly wriggled
e a in that obstinate way
that kittens always
do when you are
', 1 only thinking of
their good.
Come along, we
must go home now," said I.
As we went through the yard Mrs Hird was talking to the
baker's wife and promising her a kitten to catch the rats in her
back-kitchen.
"They are excellent cats for catching of rats," she was
saying; and then she told the baker's wife to send her little girl
in a week's time to fetch the kitten, and advised that they







THE UGLIEST ONE.


should butter its feet well as soon as they got it inside the
house, so that it might sit down to lick its paws and so forget
to run home again to its old home.
They are going to send the ugliest one away," said Ruth.
" I must run back and say good-bye to it."
Some time passed before we went to Mrs Hird's again,
and when we did the ugliest one was gone; but its mother and
grandmother had each kittens hidden away somewhere; they
were determined to keep their families to themselves this time,
and no one had yet found out their whereabouts.
Ruth and I had not long to stay at that visit, we were
obliged to hurry back because we were going for a long walk
that afternoon; and lessons had to be done first. The boys had
a half-holiday, and we were all going to take the dogs for a
swim in the canal. It was great fun taking the dogs there; for
Bounce, who was a water spaniel, would give himself such airs,
and try to coax Lassie, a beautiful young collie dog, to go into
the water as he did himself. She did not like it, although when
once in she could swim as easily and well as a water-snake; she
always thought that some dreadful accident had happened to her
if she ever got out of her depth. She would hurry out of the
water and come to her master to be pitied; looking up into his
face with sad, gentle, brown eyes, trying to say, Only think!
I might never have seen you any more! Then she would not
go near the water again for ever so long.
That afternoon we were all very merry, and we went quite
a long way; far enough for us, though the dogs were never
satisfied, but always fixed three pairs of reproachful eyes at us
when we took a turning which seemed to be leading towards
home. At last we came to some marshy fields, crossed by
trenches filled with water, where Lassie walked most warily for
fear she should slip into a stream by accident, for she had






THE UGLIEST ONE.


slipped into the canal, egged on by Bounce, once already that
day, and thought herself warned.
These fields led us ifito the high-road. We had not gone
very far along it before we saw Lassie standing still in front of
something she had found; wagging her tail and making playful
pounces at it, then starting back with an absurd gambol as if
she were inviting the thing, whatever it was, to come out of the
hedge and play with her.
She would do that in front of a lamb if she met one in the
















". .

fields, and look most puzzled when the lamb did not respond to
the invitation, or she would do the same to a frog, toad, or rat.
She never hurt anything; and I once knew her carry a rat
in her mouth nearly all the way home, until it squeaked,
when she set it quietly down and it ran away scot free. I
am afraid that Lassie became sterner about rats as she grew
older.
When the boys saw that Lassie had found something, they







THE UGLIEST ONE.


came running up to see what it was, and we came on more
slowly behind.
Poor beggar I I heard Gerald say.
Pick up the poor little brute! said Tom.
I wonder whether it is a hedgehog; I do so want to see
one," said Ruth, and she began to run.
But when we all came up to the place, we saw Tom
stroking the creature which Gerald had taken up; not holding
it as if it were prickly.
"What is it?" asked Ruth. "Oh, poor little thing! it is
a kitten. And-oh, Bessie! I do believe-yes, it is. It is the
ugliest one! and she stretched out her hands for it.
How could it get here? Look at it! it's leg is broken or
something-and how thin it is! It is the ugliest one, I know
its marks quite well. Has it run away, or what? "
It has had a bad hit from a stone," said Tom, handling it,
but not roughly. "The kindest thing to do would be to kill
it."
That is what people always say! said Ruth; but I don't
think it is at all a kind thing to do!" and she laid the kitten
against her round cheek, although its fur was all out of order,
clammy and dirty and wet from wandering in the fields.
"You know you wouldn't like to be killed yourself! went
on Ruth, while her tears ran over and dripped on the kitty's
nose; "and I don't believe its leg is broken a bit. Just see!
it can walk up my arm quite well. It is only starved, and I
must take it home with me, and you must help!-I mean by
persuading people! "
"Well, I don't see how we can leave it in the road here,"
said the boys, who were not half so unkind as they sometimes
pretended to be.
They won't let you bring it into the house, and you can't






THE UGLIEST ONE.


keep it in the garden," said Tom, leaving off whistling for a
moment to speak.
"It's such a hideous little beast, and so dirty added
Gerald.
But I'll tell you what; put it into the stable and feed it
up. It won't look so bad in a few days then, perhaps," said
Tom, eyeing the kitten doubtfully; "and, may be, mother
would let you keep it, or you could give it away."
"I shouldn't say anything about it at first."
Ruth wanted to rescue the kitten so much, and so did I,
and so did the boys, though they did not say so, that between
us we made a plan to keep it in the coach-house without
anyone's knowing it for a time; and I.am afraid we forgot that
we ought not to do things without telling father or mother.
She never told us not to keep a kitten in the coach-house,
you know," said Ruth slowly.
"I suppose she didn't think we should want to," said I.
"You could not possibly think of all the things a person might
want to do and tell them not to do them. You remember when
Tom fried a mushroom on that slate over the gas; when father
smelt the smell, and Tom said nobody had told him not to do
it, father said- "
But we can tell mother by-and-bye, so perhaps it won't
matter," Ruth broke in cheerfully.
Then we agreed to feed kitty when the dogs were fed, and
to get milk for it somehow."
I think I had it in my head that "somehow" must mean
going about with the bottle we made liquorice water in for our
doll's feasts, and filling it in the pantry when cook was not
looking. But as this did not seem a pleasant plan, we thought
that somehow" when Griffin's milk was taken up to the stable
we could get some for the kitten too.







THE UGLIEST ONE.


"I'll tell you what!" said Ruth suddenly, "I daresay
Griffin will let it live in the stable with him and have some of
his meals. Perhaps he would like to pretend that the kitten is
his son. Let us try when we go in; nobody could mind that if
Griffin didn't! I am sure he must be very dull in the stable all
alone!"
This idea seemed such a good one that we determined to
try it, and spent the rest of the way home in inventing a name
for little pussy. We thought of a great many, but all of them
seemed too common for such an uncommon-looking animal as
he undoubtedly was. At last Ruth said, If it is to be the son
of Griffin, we had better call it Fitz-Griffin; like Fitz-Howard,
you know, means the son of Howard, and Fitz-Allen the son of
Allen."
This was such a bright thought! We agreed that Fitz-
Griffin should be the name of the little waif, with Fitz for
short.
He looks something like a Griffin, too," said Ruth.
Look how he spreads out his claws when he is pleased
and waves them about! And indeed the kitten had an odd,
rampant sort of way when Ruth put it on the ground for a
moment, of sitting bolt upright and clawing the air just like the
dragon on my father's seal. This was a queer way of begging
to be carried which that kitten always had, and which it must
have learnt of its own accord, together with many other tricks
which we found out afterwards.
We made haste home, overjoyed to think of having settled
so comfortable a home in the stable for our new pet, where it
would have the society of a respectable member of its own kind.
However, we were disappointed in this matter, for whether it
was that Griffin, being a cat advanced in life, did not care to
have young and gay friends about him, or whether he liked to







THE UGLIEST ONE.


have the stable to himself, or whether he had some other reason,
one thing is certain, that nothing could be less like a father's
conduct than his, when he saw his would-be child. He swore,
he spat, he rushed at it and boxed its ears; he never rested till
he had fairly driven the stranger out of the premises.
We looked at each other; the boys chuckled. What was
to be done next ?
There is the loft over the stable," said Tom. "Go up the
ladder and put it up there, you can take away the ladder when
you come down, so that nothing can get up."
The stable was empty of horses at the time, and we some-
times used that loft as a play-house in wet weather. We made
the kitten a bed there, and fetched it food and milk.
Oh how that hungry little thing ate and drank! It went
on as if it had not seen food for a week; which was about the
truth I suppose. When it had done it was as round and tight
as a little ball, instead of being flat and thin, and it soon fell
fast asleep.
We came- away and left it there, Ruth lingering till the last
to move the ladder when we had all come down, lest Griffin
should go up and repeat his most unfatherly treatment. We
left the window, which was at a great height from the ground,
wide open for light and air. This window was nothing but
a sort of wooden shutter, which opened and shut on hinges like
a door, and it was on a level with the loft floor, so that kitty
could sit and bask in the patch of sunshine which came in
there.
We all went in to the house for tea, and most of us forgot
for the time all about the little puss; yet I do not think Ruth
did, because I could see her looking out at the window so often
as if she were not thinking about the cake on her plate. I, if
I thought about kitty at all, felt glad to remember that it was






THE UGLIEST ONE.


shut up safe and sound out of the way. It will not be difficult
at all to keep it there for a few days, or even for all its life,"
Ruth was just whispering to me when, all of a sudden, I saw
something glide into the room just like a grey shadow after
Nurse, as she was bringing in a new plate of bread-and-butter,
run up to Ruth and jump into her lap. Nurse did not notice
it; Ruth stared in amazement. It was the kitten. How in the
world could it have come in? It seemed much pleased with
itself, and was rubbing its little sooty
face against Ruth's arm, purring like
mad, and then beginning a desperate
attempt to clean both ears at once f
before it prepared to arrange itself
comfortably'on her knee. Ruth looked -'
the picture6 of silent dismay all the
time. As soon as Nurse was gone
Ruth muffled it up in her pinafore and .
ran back with it to the loft. She came '
back /iuite out of breath.
/" I can't think how it could have
corrie," she said, "unless it jumped down through the hole
where the ladder leads up, on to the manger, and then to the
stable door. But I have shut the trap-door now, where the
leader goes in."
"We went on with our tea, the boys were in a hurry. Tom,
Who had done first, was just getting up to open the door when
Sfancied I heard a sound outside like a miew." I went across
o see, and the moment the door was ajar in rushed the kitten
nd buried its head in Ruth's lap as before.
"Oh dear! what is the good of trying to keep this kitten a
secret ?" cried Ruth, looking round at every one by turns.
And indeed it did not seem easy. How did it contrive to
F






THE UGLIEST ONE.


get out? There was no way but jumping from the window,
which seemed impossible.
The little beast was put back again, and again, and again
into the loft; the ladder was moved and trap-door shut; but all
that evening wherever Ruth went she was haunted by Fitz-
Griffin, who would follow. It was the strangest thing! If we
played in front of the house, on the broad gravel-drive, there
would the kitten mysteriously appear, sitting up in front of her,
pawing the air and begging to be taken up. When we went
away to the back garden, or down all the way to the far
shrubbery, it was just the same.
As soon as it was carried back again and shut up in the
loft, it began to cry plaintively. It seemed as if it could not
bear out of its sight the little girl who had saved it from
starvation and misery. People talk of the worship o :a dog for
its master, but I have never seen anything like the love of that
stray kitten for my sister Ruth.
After it had been put away and had reappeared about-seven
times, we hid ourselves in the lilac bushes near the stable as
soon as Ruth had once more taken it up the ladder, fastened the
trap-door, and left it. We were determined to find out how it
managed the matter.
First of all we could see little pussy come to the open
window and watch Ruth's retreating figure with a dole
sound. Then it began to pace up and down the opening by the
window, its voice getting louder and more hollow every moment
till at last with a shriek of utter despair, as if it were saying
good-bye to life, it fairly flung itself from the window; to oui
horror and astonishment, legs and tail all spread abroad as if i
were trying to fly. Kitty came to the ground a trifle dazed
seemingly, but quite unhurt; picked itself up, and trotted
manfully off to the spot where Ruth's boots were sticking out ot







THE UGLIEST ONE.


the lilac-bush. It seemed to care nothing about the rest of
us.
My recollection of the life which that kitten led us for the
next few days makes me advise no one to try keeping a kitten
unknown to the household. But then there never was, or will
be, another kitten like Fitz-Griffin.
We tried shutting the loft window after this, for there was
plenty of light from some glass tiles in the loft roof, and it was
satisfactory for the present to hear the kitten mewing inside.
As long as you could hear its voice within, all was safe, but if
when we were in the garden, or even in the house (for you could
hear it there if you listened anxiously), the sound stopped, Ruth
would look quite pale from expectation. The kitten must be
coming; and it always did-for it soon found a hole under the
loft tiles, and oozed out at that, after the loft window was kept
shut. At last one day it came into the drawing-room, when
father and mother and everybody were there, and told its own
story, which we finished for it.
"We only meant to hide it till it was a little fatter and
prettier, mother dear! cried every one all at once.
We were afraid you would think it so very ugly, and that
its chance of being kept would be spoilt," said Ruth; but do
let us, mother, please "
"I don't like cats on account of the chicks," said father,
"but--"
"Well, it seems rather as if this kitten would not give us
any choice," said mother, smiling. It will be kept. But you
had better put it in the yard outside the scullery, in one of the
outhouses there. It surely cannot get over that wall, it is
twenty feet high. But I am afraid when it is older you must
find it a home somewhere else-it may take a fancy to pigeon
for dinner."






THE UGLIEST ONE.


So we took Fitz-Griffin into the yard. The three dogs had
their kennels there; but Bounce never noticed cats, Lassie loved
everything, and Mumps leapt for joy, with all the rapture of
puppyhood at the sight of anything to romp with; so there was
no risk of harm from them to the new-comer. We made Fitz-
Griffin up a snug bed in the wood-house, but the fanciful little
fellow would not sleep there after the first night; we missed it
next evening, and found the kitten curled up like a snail on
Lassie's back in her kennel. It always slept there after that-
having struck up a friendship with this doggie although it
hissed and arched its back at the others.
But if we supposed that Fitz-Griffin was going to live
peaceably in that yard while Ruth was in the house, it was quite a
mistake. Over the walls it could not get; and yet in some extra-
ordinary way it still continued to appear wherever Ruth was.
If her bedroom door opened, in ran the kitten. If she was
having her music lesson, kitty howled outside, louder than the
piano, to be let in. Did it run in when cook opened the door
into the yard? She declared not; but said she was always
finding that door open when she was "certain sure" she had
shut it tight. And another very strange thing began to happen
at this same time. The dogs were always wandering into the
house-a thing which was not allowed.
The yard door opened into the scullery, the scullery into
.the kitchen, through a door usually left open, and the kitchen
into the passage which led by a back staircase to the rest of the
house.
Bounce being a spoilt old friend was sometimes allowed to
lie by the kitchen fire. He could be trusted with untold legs of
mutton roasting in front of it. But as to Lassie and Mumps-
well, I am sorry to say that their consciences were not formed yet.
It grieved Bounce to see how loose their principles were; and







THE UGLIEST ONE.


whenever he saw them stealing he felt it his duty to tell of
them; and would bark to give warning. If cook heard him
barking she would run to the kitchen, certain that she would
find the other two dogs there.
Sorrow to the lot of ye! How is it ye gets in at all, at
all ?" cried poor cook, as she turned the three dogs out of the
kitchen into the yard and shut the door for the fifth time one
morning. Sure I can't turn me back for a minute for them
bad animals! "
She went away to finish something which she was doing in
another part of her place when again Bow-wow, wow! from
Bounce. Back she hurried just in time to catch Lassie licking
out a basin of warm dripping on the kitchen table, while
Mumps was busy with a mutton chop underneath, which he
seemed to think he had caught and killed in lawful chase, for
he was shaking it and growling.
The kitten was waiting at the door on the house-side ready
to dart upstairs and find Ruth so soon as anyone should
pass.
"Arrah! Ye bad bastes!" cried cook. "Bad luck to
whoever let ye in!"
She turned every one of them out and went to peel her
potatoes in the scullery. While she was doing this she heard
a very slight rattle at the latch of the door leading out into the
yard. Click! it went very softly; click, click! again, as if
someone were touching the handle who was not quite strong
enough, or who did not understand how to lift the latch. Cook
put down her peeling knife with one potato half scraped, and
stole noiselessly to a small side window. When she looked out
she threw up her hands with a jerk and laughed-then looked
again as if she could not believe her own eyes-muttering to
herself. "Well-if ever-! Then without wasting another







THE UGLIEST ONE.


minute she ran upstairs and bursting into the room where Ruth
and I 'were doing lessons. Come down, mem! Come down,
Miss Bessie and Miss Ruth, me darlins," cried cook; "and ye'll
see what ye'll see "
We went down, pell mell, not very sorry, perhaps, for an
interruption to the multiplication table; and we met the boys
and mother, and they came too. We all stood where cook put
us to watch. This was what we saw:
First the three dogs standing in a half-circle round the
door which led from the yard into the scullery, looking eagerly
up at it with their heads on one side, while
Lassie gave a short yelp, as if to say, Be
quick! open sesame! and up above, with one
front paw drawn through the loop of the
S handle, and the other patting the thumb-piece,
as he kicked wildly at the doorpost with his
Shind legs, the fat little round body of Fitz-
SGriffin was clinging.
SAfter much shoving, dabbing, and tugging
Sthe door at last flew open and in rushed the
String of animals-Fitz-Griffin last, but not
S least. Oh, how we laughed!
This was the kitten's plan-its way of be-
ginning to work out its road to Ruth. First
by managing to swing this door open, and then
by waiting patiently at the other doors one by one-unless it
found them ajar. The dogs had seen their chance and
used it.
But after the discovery a solemn council was held, and it
was determined that there was no keeping the ugliest kitten-
for, if the ugliest, he certainly was the most dreadfully clever, too;
mother and cook foresaw that there would be never any peace.







THE UGLIEST ONE. 87

We had often read stories of cats which opened doors
before-and had half believed them-but we had never heard of
a young kitten having such an old head upon its shoulders.
What would not Fitz-Griffin be able to do at full age, if nature
should keep him alive? Unless we tied that kitten up, it was
plain that it would always, be too many for us. Mother said
we must find it a happy home," and so, with many sighs and
tears, Ruth took it to the postmaster's wife, who wanted a cat,
did not care for good looks, as she said "handsome is that
handsome does was her notions, and would be sure to treat it
kindly. I think, though, that, when it came to the parting,
Ruth was quite sorry she had not an attack of toothache-
which never would come at the right time-for she would have
made it a plea for being allowed to cuddle the kitten for a few
days longer. The post-office was at least four miles from our
house-too far for the pussy to run away home to Ruth. It
was smuggled there by night in a basket, so as not to know the
way home.
We were just setting out for London to pay a long visit;
by the time we came back it would be accustomed to the
change, and have forgotten us, we thought.
But was Fitz-Griffin to be got rid of so 'easily as all
that ?
Not a bit of it. Nearly a year afterwards, when we had
almost left off thinking of our comical little visitor, Ruth and
I were at the post-office buying some stamps for mother, while
she drove on to pay a call higher up the road, and left us to
walk back..
The postmistress came in, and as she opened the door there
was a rush. Something dashed at Ruth, swarmed up her back,
land twisting itself round her neck like a boa, in an ecstasy of
purring, began to rub against her face and lick her cheek. It







THE UGLIEST ONE.


was Fitz-Griffin-grown a large, fine cat, although no hand-
somer than before.
Ruth was as glad to see her old admirer as he was to see
her almost, although she did not show it in the same frantic
way.
"You had better shut him up, please," she said, when we
were coming away, "or he will follow .me, I am afraid."
So the postmistress put Fitz-Griffin the house-side of the
shop door. But when we had walked a mile or so towards
home, I heard a sound borne upon the breeze which I remem-
bered too well; and looking back, there, behind us, bedabbled
with mud, and clearly calling to us to wait for him, who but
Fitz-Griffin toiled painfully along!
"Take no notice," I said, "and he will turn back." But
no such luck! The howls of the poor puss still floated to our
-- ears, becoming a little fainter and more
hopeless each one, but still following
us up; till at last, Ruth, who would
keep turning round, whenever
a more woeful wail than usual
came, saw him sit down in the
S. '" middle of the road and give
IF. *it up; too footsore to go either
--- onward or back again.
"I can't stand this!" said
Ruth, going rashly back
and picking up the spent
l ^1 traveller; "I shall take
him home, come what
may. He must be my
pussy born-although he is the very ugliest I ever saw! "
So as Fitz-Griffin had made up his small mind and soul







THE UGLIEST ONE. 89

to belong to Ruth,-and to no one else, we had to make the best
of it, and to overlook the occasional corpse of a chicken-though
I must say that he soon learnt to do no murder.
At the present moment he is lying on the hearthrug, with
his nose tucked in among his paws; dreaming, I dare say, of
all the housebreakings he would like to commit but cannot,
since we have been obliged to have new cat-proof locks put on
to all the doors; and Ruth declares that nothing comforts her
toothache for she still has it sometimes like making a
cushion for her face out of Fitz-Griffin, who seems to be fully
alive to the honour, and purrs as if his heart would break.












S1RVeal 1bonb.
To great and small things, Love alike can reach,
And cares for each as all, and all. as each.
-TRENCH.
" JATHER I do wish you would tell me all about every-
thing, like you do the boys! "
"Tell you 'all about everything,' eh?" said father to
his little daughter, as she ran up to him in the field at the
bottom of the garden, and caught hold of his hand, looking up
into his face. All about everything ? That is a great deal to
tell such a small mouse as you are,-and I shouldn't know
where to stop. Don't you think I had better begin by telling
you a little about something ? "
Yes, do,- father! Why shouldn't I be told things, and
have a fishing-rod, and a real pond in the garden, and cobbler's
wax, and one of those things that you look through, like Jack
and Tom? They say that little girls can't see through it-Jack
would not let me try."
"What a quantity of things you want, Mousie!" said
father, laughing. I don't think you would be any happier for
having fishing-rods and cobbler's wax, and I am not sure myself
about your being able to see much with 'that thing you look
through,' as you call Jack's microscope. But I will tell you
what. If you like you shall have a little pond all to yourself."
"A real pond, father?" said Ethel, whose pet name was
Mousie, giving a skip of pleasure.
Yes, a real pond. At least, it will have water in it, and
some of the things which a real pond has. I can't promise you
the mud-is it the mud you want ?"








A REAL POND.


" No, father. Where will my pond be?"
"What do you say to a pond in the nursery window?"
" Oh, father, you must be laughing, though I can't


~ ~ -


see it under your moustache.
game! "
No, Mousie. You shall


Please don't say it is only a

really have a little wee pond in







A REAL POND.


your nursery window. Come here; we will go and look at the
cattle-pond under the trees while I am telling you about it."
"Nurse won't let me go there," said Mousie, with a
chuckle of content as her footsteps turned in the delightful
forbidden direction, because once I stopped on a lovely bit of
green, and my boots went sinking right in, and one of them
stayed behind. I wanted to sail a horse-chestnut rind, and
pretend it was a boat. But you may step where you like,
because you are grown-up," went on Mousie, thoughtfully. I
wish I was grown-up too. Grown-up people haven't to mind
about nurse, or what anybody says to them! "
"Haven't they?" said father, smiling; "well, not about
nurse, perhaps. But I shouldn't like to leave one of my boots
behind for my own sake-so we must go round this side where
the pond is walled up. Here, you can look over the wall and
see into the water quite plainly if I lift you up a little. Now,
Mousie, what do you see ?"
"A lot of green stuff, and mud, and some other stuff rather
like tapioca pudding."
Nothing else?"
A great many little things that look like black slugs, only
they are quicker, and go darting about and swimming to and
fro; and a drowned snail; and, oh! such a funny little thing
walking about on the bottom-two of them!-oh! a great
many. Please, father, don't put me down for just one minute!
there is something running along on the top of the water. I
must see it! "
But, Mousie, you weigh a good deal."
Oh, father, pretend that I am light, one instant more.
I saw something red and spotted-oh, do!" Splash, splash,
splash! came three great drops of rain into the pond. There
was a sound of thunder rolling above.




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