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Pussy's London Life.
Hector, the Dog.
PTinti6t in e(dirnro Jn ~hlr)uniim.
FREDERICK WARNE AND CO.
BEDFORD STREET, COVENT GARDEN.
NEW YORK: SCRIBNER, WELFORD AND CO.
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THE Ass, or Donkey, as we sometimes call him, is a
very useful animal. He may be called the friend of
the poor man, as he helps him in his daily toil with equal
strength and patience, and is satisfied with little and cheap
food. A thistle from the hedge is a dainty for the poor
Donkey. I think he may be called the child's friend also,
for the little ones owe much pleasure to the gentle, sure-
footed beast, that carries them over the sands by the sea-
side, or along the pleasant breezy lanes, or across the
furze-covered common. Even baby may have a ride on
this quiet steed, and be carried in a cosy basket, nodding
his fat little head by the side of his bigger brothers and
The Donkey has one fault: he is obstinate, and often
tries to get his own way. There are children who ought
to know better, who have the same fault. When they see
how disagreeable it is in a Donkey, we hope they will try
to be more docile and obedient themselves. The Donkey
is made obstinate, sometimes, by ill-treatment. Indeed,
all animals are affected by the temper of their owners.
The Ass or Dog of an ill-tempered man or boy, is almost
sure to grow like his master. So if you have a Donkey
of your own, take care to treat it kindly, and set it a good
example. In the East, Donkeys are much larger and
stronger than they are in England. They will gallop
along, and go great distances, and prove as useful-some-
times more useful-than Horses. You will see in the
Bible that they are spoken of as fit to be ridden by judges
and great men.
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THE D OG.
W HO does not love the Dog? Every English boy
does, I am sure; and nearly every English girl.
Very many funny and pretty stories are told of Dogs. I
will tell you one that was, I know, quite true. A Skye
Terrier (you will see one with long shaggy hair in the
picture,) grew very fond of a merry baby-boy once, and
would always be in the nursery when he was bathed and
dressed. And when nurse was ready for them, he used to
bring her the little socks and shoes to put on; and baby
would crow, and laugh, and say, "Poor, poor," and pat
Fido's head with his tiny soft hand, and then Fido would
jump about and bark. At last poor baby was taken ill
and died, and was buried under the Maythorn in the old
churchyard. When Fido could not find his little play-
fellow he was very sad: he cried and howled, and would
not eat the first day, and the next morning no one could
find him in the house; but nurse, who walked to look at
poor baby's grave that afternoon, found Fido lying on it
with the child's little socks and shoes under his paws!
He had stolen them out of the nursery, and carried them
to the grave, where he was scratching and whining, in
hopes that baby would wake up and put them on! Nurse
had great trouble to coax him to go home with her, and
for a long time he would steal away to the grave, and cry
and whine there; so fondly he thought about his little
, ,. -. -
THE Horse is a noble creature, as intelligent and faith-
ful as the Dog, when well brought up. The Arabs
are the people who are kindest to their Horses: they
suffer the animal to live in the tent with their children,
and treat it as if it were quite one of the family. Thus
it grows up gentle and sensible, obeys its master, and
follows him about like a Dog.
Once an Arab chief was made prisoner by his enemies,
who tied his hands and feet, and left him in a tent till
the next day, when, perhaps, they would have killed him.
But he heard his Horse whinny outside, and in the night
he rolled himself over and over on the ground, till he
got to the curtain of the tent. He lifted it up, and saw
his good Horse standing close beside it. Directly the
steed saw that his master could not get up to mount him,
he took the chief's sash in his mouth, and carrying him
thus, galloped away with him as fast nearly as the wind,
and never stopped till he fell down with his load at the
Arab's own tent door. The poor Horse was so tired that
he died almost directly afterwards, but his master was
saved, and brought back to his wife and his little children.
Was not that a very clever and kind thing for a Horse
to do ?
The Horse has a very good memory. He soon finds
his way in a new place; he is also very obedient to his
master, and seems anxious to please and serve him.
How good it was of God to make Dogs and Horses, and
give them to us to serve and love us! let us be very kind
to them, or He who made them will not be pleased.
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THE COW AND SHEEP.
OW meek and gentle the face of the Cow is! She is
the most good-tempered creature we know. I
cannot tell what children would do without her, for she
gives them the nice warm milk they drink for breakfast,
and of which the rice puddings and custards are made.
Cows are not so clever as Dogs and Horses, but they
learn to know and care for those that milk and feed them.
A Cow which had been long on board ship at sea, was
taken on shore at Portsmouth when the ship came home,
and put into a green field, where the sailors thought she
would enjoy quite a feast on the nice fresh grass and
cowslips. But after they left her she would not eat at all,
nor stay in the meadow. She ran down to the beach,
and stood there bellowing so loud and so long, that at last
they sent a boat for her, and took her on board again,
where she seemed quite happy. I think this will show
you that Cows really do learn to love those who treat
We have to thank the Sheep for our warm woollen
clothing, as well as for food. It is one of the most useful
of animals. Lambs are very pretty, playful little things.
They run and jump about in the green meadows, when
the spring comes, like a number of merry, happy little
children. They are not very clever, but they can learn
to know the voice of their shepherd, which in Eastern
countries they follow, as he walks before the flock; but
they cannot be made to follow a stranger.
THE POULTRY YARD.
THE Cock is a noble bird, very brave, and very kind.
Brave creatures generally are kind. When some
nice food is thrown down for the Poultry, or he finds a
fat worm which looks very good, he calls the Hens and
his little children the Chickens, and lets them begin to
eat before he will touch any himself. Then he joins in
the feast, and enjoys it all the better because he is not
greedy. The Hen is a very good mother. She takes
great care of her Chickens, and if she sees a Hawk high
up in the air, she calls them all under her wings, and
would be killed herself, before she would let the cruel bird
Ducks are said to be greedy birds, and I think there
is a difference between their way of eating and a Fowl's.
They look very pretty sailing on the pond.
Ducklings are the prettiest little birds that can be
seen when first they come out of the shell-little golden
puffs of feathers.
When Ducks lay early in the year, and it is rather
cold, Mamma Duck strips off more of her feathers, to
make her nest nice and warm for the nestlings, than she
does when she lays later in the season. This shows a
degree of sense and reflection in the bird we could hardly
If the eggs of a wild Duck are given to a tame Duck
to sit on, the young ones will not be tame like her own
nestlings, but will at once run away and hide themselves
with wonderful cunning. But the pretty Ducks in this
picture are tame ones, like those you may feed at the farm.
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RABBITS AND PIGEONS.
R]ABBITS are especially the pets of boys. It is a very
pretty sight to witness a number of wild Rabbits
come out and play on the grass in the moonlight, as we
have sometimes done. They are very much afraid of
Weasels; creatures which are their natural enemies. If
a Weasel follow a Rabbit who has young ones at home,
she will run in any other direction, and play all sorts of
cunning tricks to prevent him from finding her house or
burrow. Fancy rabbits are often very handsome.
Pigeons are very pretty birds, very affectionate, and
easily tamed. They like companions. A gentleman once
had one Pigeon only: as it had no friends of its own race,
it became very fond of an old Barndoor Fowl, whose side
it seldom left. It would run about all day with him, and
roost by his side at night; and the Cock never drove him
away, but seemed to be much attached to his Pigeon friend.
Some Pigeons will carry letters from one place to
another. Once when a town was shut in with enemies,
and the people could not get out to ask for help, they
sent letters to call their friends to their assistance under
the wing of one of these birds, and so obtained aid by
means of a Pigeon postman!
PSSS rN L
PUSSY'S LONDON LIFE.
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"To say a word or two, my child,
Before we part, I come;
Words which, perhaps, may cross your mind
When you are far from home.
"Grilda,"-the mother raised her paw,-
"Grilda, attend to me;
Remember that where'er you go,
You must obedient be.
"I pray you ne'er again to take
A scrap that's not your own,
Although it may be nothing more
Than just a chicken-bone.
"And recollect that Pussy-cats
Quite idle should not be;
The pleasant task of catching mice
Is given you and me.
"Try and think less about your looks,-
You're but a kitten small;
Surely in such a little thing
Should be no pride at all.
"And now, my daughter, fare thee well;
Attend to what I 've said;"
And then the mother rubb'd her cheek
Against her kitten's head.
I can't be certain that the tears
In Grilda's eyes arose;
But, walking round her parent's sides,
She purr'd and rubb'd her nose.
She really meant to try and mind
All that her mother said;
But like a corn-sieve full of holes
Was Lady Grilda's head:
The words went in at one white ear,
But not, alas! to stay;
For at the other out they slipp'd,
And vanish'd quite away.
Her future mistress, when in town,
Lived in Throckmorton Square;
And very shortly afterwards
Grilda was taken there.
This town house, in her country eyes,
Seemed fitted for a queen;
Such grandeur and such elegance
She never yet had seen.
And in her silly little heart
The foolish Pussy thought,
"This seems the proper place for me
To which I now am brought.
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"A Londoner I am become,
There's something grand in that;
I'm very glad I've ceased to be
A simple country cat.
"Such vulgar work I need not do
As running after mice;
Poor mother might, at all events,
Have spared me that advice."
But one thing Grilda much disliked
In this her London home,
That not beyond the garden gate
Was she allowed to roam.
Perhaps, too, if the truth were known,
She rather long'd to go,
Her graceful form and snow-white coat
The London cats to show.
She almost hoped that as she pass'd
They'd all turn round and stare,
And wonder who that kitten was
With such a noble air.
Within an empty attic room,
In which she used to play,
A window opening on the roof
Was left unclosed one day.
Grilda had very often thought
'T would be delightful fun
To find some way of slipping out,
And take a pleasant run.
Now was the moment for escape!
But first of all with care
She wash'd her face, arranged her tail,
And smooth'd her silken hair.
That she was doing very wrong
This naughty Pussy knew;
Yet, springing on the window-sill,
She through the opening flew.
'T was very pleasant for a time
To play and run about;
But soon she felt it dull, and wished
Some kitten would come out.
And then she found with great dismay
Her coat was getting soiled,
And feared that, ere 't was even seen,
Her beauty would be spoiled.
From such a black and dirty place
She saw 't was time to go;
So softly creeping down the wall,
She gain'd the street below.
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Having from roof to roof skipp'd on,
She'd wander'd from the square,
And reached a street which proved to be
A busy thoroughfare.
She stood bewilder'd with the noise,
Not knowing where to fly,
When suddenly a savage dog
Came running briskly by.
He stopped, for on a flight of steps
The trembling cat he spied;
Then darting up, with grinning teeth
To seize her neck he tried.
Never was cat more nearly caught.--
The dog had touched her tail,
When Grilda sprang, with bristling hair,
Upon an iron rail.
He hoped to reach her as she clung,
And leap'd with all his might;
But giving one more desperate bound,
She vanish'd from his sight.
In vain he hunted up and down,
And scented all around,
For Puss was safely hid inside
A coal-shed underground.
Whilst here she crouch'd behind some coal
In miserable plight,
The owner came to close the door
And lock it for the night.
Set free next day, misfortune still
Appear'd to be her fate:
A milkman chanced to leave his pail
Outside an iron gate;
The pail was nearly full of milk,
Thus early in the day,
And there it stood, a tempting sight,
Exactly in her way.
'T was more than kitten could resist,
So scrambling up the side,
To reach the white delicious food
Poor starving Grilda tried.
The milkman saw her, and his lungs
Sent forth so loud a yell,
That overbalancing herself,
Into the pail she fell!
As quickly out she came again,
Dragged by the angry man;
And, smarting from his cuffs and blows,
All dripping, off she ran.
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Alas, poor Pussy! every hope
Of admiration o'er,
She only long'd to find her way
Back to her home once more.
But she, like others I have known,
The lesson had to learn,-
Though easy 't is to go astray,
'T is harder to return.
At length she saw what seem'd to her
A quiet little place
Beside a post, where she might creep
To wash her sides and face.
Yet even here poor Grilda found
She could not safely stay;
Some schoolboys passing by the spot
Soon pelted her away.
Another little wanderer
Was pacing up the street,
Like Grilda, scarcely knowing where
To turn her weary feet.
'T was Madge Dunlee, a beggar-girl,
Sent forth to beg her bread;
A child of want and woe was she,
Untaught, uncloth'd, unfed.
No food that day had touch'd her lips,
Yet all had pass'd her by;
No one had seen her outstretch'd hand,
Or listen'd to her cry.
And thus she linger'd on her way,
Till coming to a shop,
The fragrant scent of new-baked bread
Caused hungry Madge to stop.
She knew, poor child! those loaves and buns
Had not been baked for her,
Yet from the pleasant sight and smell
She did not care to stir.
She gazed so long, they came at last
To order her away;
The baker said 't was not the place
For beggar-girls to stay.
A woman passing from the shop
Possess'd a kindly heart;
She broke a penny roll in two,
And gave the child a part.
But just as Madge began to eat,
Came Grilda to her side,
And plain as starving Pussy could
To beg a morsel tried.
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"There's not enough," thought Madge,
"I 'm sure,
For Pussy and for me;
But yet how very weak and faint
The poor thing seems to be!
"There, take a bit; I know so well
How bad it feels to want;
Though as to giving any more,
No, Puss, indeed I can't."
But as she sat upon a step,
Eating her bit of bread,
Puss mew'd and touch'd her with her paw,
Imploring to be fed.
Her constant cries and eager looks
Went straight to Madge's heart:
Of every piece of roll she ate
She gave the cat a part.
This little scene by chance took place
Close to Throckmorton Square,
And Grilda's mistress from her house
Observ'd the hungry pair.
She noticed how the beggar-child
Her scanty meal had shared,
And how, though wanting food herself,
For Pussy she had cared.
She sent to bid her come within
Her hospitable door,
And gave her such a meal as Madge
Had never seen before.
Once more in safety, Grilda learned
A lesson from that day:
That 't is not well for little ones
Always to have their way.
Her goodness to the stranger cat
For Madge vast changes wrought;
The lady placed her in a school,
And had her clothed and taught.
And thus we see what great events
From trifling things may spring;
So let us kindness try to show
To ev'ry living thing.
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11111 ~r I
"FRISKY" THE SQUIRREL.
C. E. BOWEN,
AUTHOR OF "THE ROBIN'S CHRISTMAS EVE."
ONE day a wounded squirrel lay
Half dead upon the ground;
A keeper passing with his gun,
The little creature found.
Young Archie Gray of Fawley Hall
Was also in the wood,
And begg'd that he might take it
To save it, if he could.
The keeper shook his head in doubt;
"'Twas too far gone," he said.
He fear'd that ere the morning came,
The squirrel would be dead.
But care and skill will wonders work;
And I am glad to tell,
That very soon through Archie's care
It grew quite strong and well.
Ere long the merry little thing
Was sociable and tame,
And being very frolicsome,
"Frisky" became its name.
He'd spring and gambol round the
Performing antics droll;
Or climb and gravely take his seat
Upon the curtain pole.
When, wearied out with all his play,
He felt inclined to sleep,
He'd gently steal to Archie's side,
Then in his pocket creep.
And there curl'd up so warm and
He put himself to bed;
His nose tuck'd in between his paws,
His tail wound round his head.
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Summer and Autumn passed away;
Frisky was six months old;
When suddenly a frost set in;
The air grew keen and cold.
The old folks shiv'ring, drew their
Close to the warm fireside;
The young ones hastened to the
Rejoiced to skate and slide.
And many gathered on the banks
The pleasant sight to see,
Of skaters gliding o'er the ice
So quick and merrily.
Now Archie thought that he should
To try and learn to skate,
Though quite aware that many falls
At first would be his fate.
He knew a pond near Carlton wood,
About a mile from home ;
And there he thought he'd go, be-
No other boys would come.
His mother warned him to be sure
And leave before 'twas dark;
And not to take the public road,
But go across the park.
Protected well against the cold,
Young Archie walk'd away;
Whilst in the pocket of his coat
The little squirrel lay.
As soon as Archie tried his skates,
He got a desperate fall-
A fate awaiting ev'ry one
Who cannot skate at all!
Poor Frisky getting bump'd and
Squeak'd out with fright and pain,
And Archie thought it would not do
To serve him thus again:
So slipping off his over-coat,
In which the squirrel lay,
He placed it gently on the ground,
Supposing he would stay.
Frisky more frightened far than hurt,
Lay curl'd up like a ball,
Indulging in a fit of sulks,
Because he'd had a fall.
Then Archie hasten'd back to skate,
And in his heart was glad
No one was standing by to see
The tumbles that he had.
But as he wisely persever'd,
He grew expert at last ;
And 'twas with much regret he found
His time of leave was past.
To fetch the squirrel and his coat
Was now the boy's first care;
Imagine then his great dismay
To find he was not there!
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He searched about, but not a trace
Of Frisky could he see;
Except some nut-shells he had left
Beneath a neighboring tree.
At home, he always used to come
In answer to his name;
But now, though Archie loudly called,
No little Frisky came.
Yet all this time upon a gate
Which led within the wood,
Scarcely a stone's throw from the
A little figure stood.
'Twas Frisky, brandishing his tail
And looking round with glee;
Most likely thinking to himself,
"How sweet is liberty !"
But suddenly whilst there he sat,
He caught his master's eyes;
Who, shouting joyfully, ran off,
Hoping to seize his prize.
" No, no," thought Frisky, "free I am,
And free I mean to be !"
So, just as Archie reached the gate,
He sprang upon a tree.
Over the gate with lightning speed
His eager master flew,
No farther could he follow him,
The cunning squirrel knew.
So, climbing to an upper branch,
He sat there quite at ease,
Seeming as if he thought it fun
His master thus to tease.
For as poor Archie stood below,
In very mournful case,
The rogue threw down some wither'd
Upon his upturned face!
And then from tree to tree he sprang,
Thinking it famous fun
To keep his master going too
As fast as he could run.
The wood was getting very dark,
For now 'twas nearly night;
No longer could poor Archie keep
The squirrel in his sight.
His heart was sad and sorrowful,
He felt all hope was o'er;
Frisky, too charm'd with liberty,
Would come again no more!
Another trouble now arose,
He found he'd lost his way;
And fear'd that in the lonely wood
He all night long must stay.
Fill'd with alarm, the boy began
Most bitterly to cry;
He dreaded lest perhaps with cold
And hunger he should die.
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Two long hours pass'd, yet there he
Still toiling to and fro;
As far as ever from the point
To which he ought to go.
His teeth were chatt'ring with the
His fingers numb'd by frost;
And dreadful stories filled his mind
Of people who'd been lost.
At length he sunk upon the ground,
Completely wearied out;
His limbs felt stiff, his strength was
From wandering about.
Now very soon the moon arose,
With soft and silv'ry light;
And full of comfort to the boy
Was such a cheering sight.
He found that close beside him stood
A large old hollow tree ;
And thought that if he crept inside,
Much warmer he would be.
Some of the bark had crumbled off,
Leaving an opening wide ;
And, putting in his hand, he found
A heap of leaves inside.
These, being very soft and dry,
Would serve him for a bed;
But Archie would not go to rest
Before his prayers were said.
How thankfully he called to mind
That God could hear a prayer,
Offer'd from church, or house, or
For God is everywhere !
He knelt with boyish confidence,
Protection to implore;
And when he rose, no longer felt
As lonely as before.
Then through the opening I have
Within the tree he crept,
And soon upon his leafy bed
He comfortably slept.
At home, his absence after dark
Had caused intense alarm,
Lest some occurrence unforeseen,
Had brought the boy to harm.
And anxiously they sallied forth,
And sought him all around;
But long in vain, no trace of him
Could anywhere be found.
At length his father in the search
The hollow tree espied;
He held his lantern to the hole,
And threw its light inside.
A joyful sight it must have been,
His truant boy to see,
Unhurt and safe, and slumb'ring
Within the sheltering tree.
Nit T -...- --
] "" i ;;I Or
..... .. ..... ,
"Archie, my lad !" the father cried,
"You've found a cosy place
In which to sleep, whilst giving me
A very anxious chase!
"Wake up! wake up! and let us
To calm your mother's fear;
And tell me, as we walk along,
What can have brought you here !"
Archie arous'd, was quite perplexed
To think where he could be;
He wondered much to find himself
Inside a hollow tree !
But as his memory recalled
All that had lately pass'd,
Thankful indeed was he to know
That help had come at last.
And then he told them how he'd
To follow Frisky's flight;
And wandering on, had been at length
O'ertaken by the night.
'Tis scarcely needful here to tell
How great his mother's joy,
When safe and sound within her arms
She found her missing boy.
Welcome to Archie's dazzled eyes
The cheerful room and light,
And not less welcome, we suspect,
His supper was to-night.
But more than ever now he missed
His merry little pet;
He thought of all his winning ways
And antics with regret.
They both had liv'd so happily,
Companions day by day;
He felt as though a friend he lov'd
Were taken quite away.
All of a sudden Archie starts,
Then gives a joyous shout;
No wonder! From his coat behold,
The squirrel has sprung out!
Yes! there he'd been, he never
Of running quite away;
Though he had teased his master
It all had been in play.
High on a branch he kept a watch
On Archie down below;
And saw him when the moon ap-
Within the old tree go.
All fun was over now; he knew
'Twas time to be in bed;
And found it very cold to sit
Upon a bough instead.
At length he thought he'd scramble
Within the tree to peep;
Where, as the reader is aware,
Archie was fast asleep.
At once the cunning fellow saw
The best thing he could do,
Would be, to creep within the hole,
And go to sleep there too !
He mov'd so very noiselessly,
No sound had Archie heard.;
Though Frisky slid inside his coat,
He neither woke nor stirred.
So all this time, whilst he supposed
His little pet had fled,
There he was lying, warm and snug,
Within his usual bed.
And now he made him understand
By signs which Archie knew,
That, having fasted like himself,
He wanted supper too.
He stretched his limbs, and washed
As soon as he'd been fed,
Then he and Archie, both tired out,
Were glad to go to bed.
'Tis said, as Frisky older grew,
He learnt to mend his ways,
And never after this event
Play'd truant all his days.
I've finished now, my little friends,
The tale I had to tell,
And, hoping you have been amused,
I bid you all farewell.
o tn a D cl 9 V.0
j l ''
Man loves the dog, the dog loves man:
The dog is trusty, strong, and brave,
And God has on the dog bestowed
The power and will man's life to save.
And often has the tale been told,
How, borne along in eager strife,
While struggling hard to rescue man,
The noble dog has lost his life.
T HE little inn of Martigny
Had but few guests on Christmas
For men at home made festive cheer,
And cared not household joys to leave.
But near the door a trav'ller stood,
Who with his host had earnest talk,
With knapsack girt and staff in hand,
All ready for a mountain walk.
"Nay, stay to-night; the way is long;
Dark clouds are flitting o'er the sky ;
A storm is brewing, trust my word,--
I hear the raven's warning cry.
"Come, friend, give up thy toilsome walk,
And spend thy Christmas with us
The landlord spoke with kindly voice,
Himself a well-train'd mountaineer.
"Nay, press me not," the man replied;
"I must get home by Christmas Day.
"The mountain-pass I know right well,
Its hoary peaks and boulders gray.
"Ten years ago I left my home
My fortune in the world to seek:
It seems to me a long, long time
Since last I saw these mountains bleak.
Kronh min and Co.,
___~~~~~_ ~ I~r ~_~_1~ ~oompwmpww~
g^ ,_ ..
"I promised them that, come what might,
I would be home on Christmas Day;
So farewell; may GOD'S blessing be
With me along my toilsome way."
In the fast-fading evening light
He then pursued his lonely road,
Onward and upward through the snow,
Leaving behind him man's abode.
Above him rose the snowy peaks,
Still glowing white against the sky,
And many a crevasse, deep and wide,
Around his path he could descry.
Upward and onward still he toil'd,
His heart was beating loud and fast:
He'd reached his own dear fatherland,
Danger and toil were well-nigh past.
He long'd to hear his father's voice,
His mother's kiss once more to feel,
And in the quiet restful home
With them once more in prayer to kneel.
He long'd to spread before their gaze
The honest gains of many a year,
Earn'd with hard toil for those he lov'd,
And guarded with a jealous care.
His father with his silver hair,
His mother with her kind blue eyes,
His sisters, little playmates once,-
Would he their faces recognize?
Colder and colder blew the wind,
It whistled up the mountain-pass;
The blinding snow-storm flew before;
The ice was slippery as glass.
Onward he went, but cautiously:
"Surely I have not miss'd my way?
The night grows dark, 't is piercing cold:
Can I hold on till dawn of day?"
And still he battled with the storm,
That every moment fiercer grew,
And stronger came the dreadful thought
That he the way no longer knew.
And now his strength is ebbing fast;
His head is sinking on his breast.
Oh! could he in that fearful storm
But find some shelter, gain some rest!
Happy for him that at that time,
Alone upon the mountain-side,
He knew that to his Father's love
His life or death he might confide.
and (u TSnn
The eddying snow-wreath whirl'd around,
Snow hid the path, snow fill'd the air.
He fell unconscious to the ground,
The object of a Father's care.
Above the smooth white-sheeted snow
The convent-walls rose dark and high,
And bright the clear, cold stars looked
From out the wind-swept winter sky.
The stately shadows, broad and dark,
Lay stretch'd along the mountain-side,
And through the narrow windows gleam'd
The blazing logs of Christmas-tide.
It was the holy Christmas Eve,
When joy in Christian homes should be,
And in this lonely monast'ry
Was friendly talk and quiet glee.
And truly none deserved it more
Than these lone men of lowly mind,
Who, in their Master's steps to tread,
Had left the pleasant world behind.
That was a scene for painter's art,
Those men so calm, so free from strife,
Who bore upon each rugged face
The impress of a noble life.
Nor men alone composed the group:
Four dogs, of pure St. Bernard blood,
Or slept unconscious on the hearth,
Or by their masters proudly stood;
Calm, lofty, steadfast, great, and strong,
A picture of the mountains round;
Both dogs and masters in one tie
Of kindly brotherhood fast bound.
What was their life ? had selfish aim
Enticed them to this lonely spot,
Life's toil and burden to escape,
Its battle-field to enter not ?
No, surely; not in sinful ease
The daily life of each was spent,
But to fight hand in hand with Death
Each nerve was strained, each pow'r
For here, amongst the snow and ice,
The everlasting winter cold,
Full many a weary traveller
Had died unknown since days of old.
And so to seek and save the lost
These men and dogs were living here;
Bravely they daily risk'd their lives,
Nor e'er gave way to thought of fear.
~~ ---------~- --- --- I a -- r I ~tPblL~EPPE~~
Vespers are over. In the hall
The monks are gathered round the board
To celebrate the joyful feast
With the best cheer their stores afford.
The noble dogs are feasting now,
Fed with kind hands and loving care,
For if they share their masters' toils
Their joys and feasts they also share.
"Brethren and friends," the Prior said,
"The night grows wild, the storm gets
The dogs are restless; some must go,
If help is needed. to be nigh.
"This night we '11 sing our hymn to GoD
With shepherds and the angelic host;
But you will praise whilst yet you serve,
And by the serving praise Him most."
So, taking hatchets, torches, ropes,
The monks and dogs together went;
They make towards the mountain-pass,
And soon the dogs are on a scent.
Smelling and sniffing through the storm,
Their noble heads bent to the snow,
Close followed by the stalwart monks,
They bravely up the mountain go.
"Full sure, I guess," said Brother Ralph,
"Some traveller is out to-night,
And sure I am that for his life
With storm and snow he'll have to fight.
"And if but once he miss the path
Hard by the precipice which winds,
A fearful sight 't will be for him
The mangled traveller that finds.
"But, see, the dogs are on the track;
See how with one consent they go;
They 've turn'd the point, they 're out of
And, hark! that baying down below!"
The monks rush on with breathless speed,
All on the strain, no word they say;
But as they breast the storm-blasts' rage,
With silent earnestness they pray.
They turn the point, and down below
The eager, striving dogs they see,
All on a narrow ledge that hangs
Projecting o'er the icy sea.
There's one way down, but e'en in light,
When all is calm, on summer's day,
While in pursuit of mountain goat,
The hunter dreads that dizzy way,
The brothers pause, and peering down,
Each grasps the other as he stands;
The noble hounds will do till death
What their life-saving law commands.
First one and then the other down
That fearful steep, with shuddering
They creep, they cringe, they bound, they
And now on snow-slip swiftly fly.
The snow-slip takes a happy turn,
And lands them on the icy sea,
And sharp glad barkings upward send
The tidings of their victory.
And thanks to GOD! the storm is past,
The gentle moon gives out her light
To guide their footsteps down each steep,
And aid their swing from height to
They reach at length the sea of ice,
Three dogs come bounding to their
The fourth, brave Hector, where was he
Hurl'd by the avalanche's slide ?
Anxious and eager rush the dogs
To where a face of hopeful glow
And firm resolve, in death-like swoon,
Peers upward from the open'd snow.
What dogs could do these dogs have done;
Man's skill and care must do the rest;
And sooner far than could be thought
Their efforts with success were blest.
But other cares await them now:
No sooner had they shown the man,
Then, darting off with eager haste,
The hounds to farther distance ran.
Hector they seek with whine and cries;
They scratch the appalling mound of
Which, loosen'd from the mountain-side,
Had swept them with it down below.
Vain work for dogs! vain work for men!
Thousands of tons of ice and snow,
Heap'd up in one vast funeral pile,
Poor Hector holds entombed below.
Alas! poor Hector! Gone for him
Those scampers on the mountain's side,
Where to lead men from height to height
Still upward, was his joy and pride.
.Kronheim and Co., Lonidon.
Gone the sweet smell of pine-clad hill,
The bright blue sky, the sunny slope,
The torrent's roar, the eagle's cry,
The foes with which he used to cope.
For winter oft would send the wolf
To prowl among the flocks below,
And oft the bear would seek the herds
That shudder'd on their path of snow.
Then mighty courage filled the heart
Of Hector, bravest of the brave,
And forth he rushed with eager haste
The trembling flocks and herds to save.
But now no more: his work is done;
The dog has met a hero's end!
With deep-drawn sigh the brethren mourn
Their mute companion and their friend.
Then on with heavy hearts and slow
They bear with toil the rescued man,
Mounting still upward to the height
From whence their steep descent began.
And slow, and hanging low their heads.
As if oppress'd by sense of shame
Mingled with grief, the noble hounds
In silence to the convent came.
There watchful care attends the couch
Where rests the traveller returned,
And swift feet carry to his home
Good news from one they might have
But as each Christmas-tide returned,
And still he toil'd in life's rough way,
With thankful praise he joined in thought
Hector, the dog, and Christmas Day.
4. 9 ;"-ni~ 3