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The Baldwin Library
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'mast a Instruct gng gtaets.
WITH ILL USTRA TIONS.
"WILLIAM P. NIMMO:
LONDON: 14 KING WILLIAM STREET, STRAND;
PRINTED BY M'FARLANE AND ERSKINE
(late Schenck & M'Farlane),
ST JAMES SQUARE.
L- i ^ ^ _____ _
I. THE LITTLE GIRL AND THE CAT, I
II. THE NEST AT THE TOP OF THE CHIMNEY, 3
III. BOOKS AND THEIR VALUE, 6
IV. THE LOST BIRD, 12
V. THE HAPPY FAMILY, 15
VI. THE NEW YEAR'S GIFT, 18
VII. SERVANT AND FRIEND, 22
VIII. THE STORY OF A SEED, . 25
IX. LESSONS FROM A GOAT, 31
X. LESSONS FROM THE VINE, 37
XI. LILLA AND HER FLOWERS, 40
XII. THE POTATO PLANT, 45
XIII. NOAH'S ARK, 50
XIV. THE BOY AND THE BUTTERFLY, 56
XV. THE PEACH-STONE, 60
XVI. LUCY AND THE CATERPILLAR, 65
XVII. WILLIE AND THE VIOLIN, 74
XVIII. THE BOUQUET OF VIOLETS, 78
XIX. THE TWO CATS, 84
XX. LAURA'S LESSON, 95
XXI. THE LADY-BIRD, 107
XXII. FRED'S LESSON, 113
THE LITTLE GIRL AND THE CAT.
LITTLE girl called Amy was one day seated
in the garden playing with her two dolls,
when a pretty cat made its appearance at
the gate, and stood looking at the child as if it were
not sure whether to venture in or not.
"Pussy, pussy, come pussy !" called Amy, and
the cat came running to her side, and rubbed its
soft head against the little girl's cheek, as she stooped
to stroke its pretty fur.
Pussy was quite delighted, and purred loudly to
"testify her satisfaction, and Amy was quite happy to
play with it, and caressed it fondly.
2 THE LITTLE GIRL AND THE CAT
And so they loved each other, and were for the
moment the greatest of friends.
But the child became naughty, and pulled poor
Then pussy was angry with Amy for being so un-
kind, and would not purr any more.
They did not love each other now, they were no
Pussy would not play any more with the little girl
who had been so cruel and wicked, and ran away.
And so Amy was left alone. As soon as her little
friend was gone she was sorry for what she had done,
but it was too late then, and she resolved to be more
kind and thoughtful for the future, for wicked people
and naughty children have no friends.
I ;41-- -"
THE NEST AT THE TOP OF THE
WO little birds once built their nest at the
S very top of a high chimney.
In this nest there were four eggs, and
very soon the eggs opened, and four little birds
without any feathers came out of them.
But the mother had plenty nice soft feathers, and
she took the little ones under her wings and warmed
By and bye the little birds grew, and began to
4 TI1E VEST AT TOP OF CIHJIMNE Y.
have feathers of their own. Then the mother was
able to leave them a little, while she went to seek
food for them.
The little birds' wings were not yet strong enough
to fly, and before the mother left them she gave them
a great deal of good and wise advice.
Do not leave the house, my dear little ones, till
I return," were her last words; which meant, "do
not leave the nest."
But as soon as the mother was gone, a disobedient
little bird, who thought itself quite strong and able to
go alone, began to wish to go out of the nest. It
came to the very edge, and stretched its head over
the side of the nest, and then it stood up on its two
little trembling feet.
Oh what a naughty little bird," you will say, "to
disobey its mother !" But the little one paid dearly
for being so rash, for it fell into the chimney.
And when the father and mother returned they
could only find three of their little ones in the
Our brother is lost; he has fallen into the chim-
ney," cried the three little ones all at once.
And the father and mother, and three little ones,
were all very sorry and sad for a long time.
THE NEST AT TOP OF CHIMNEY. 5
One child's disobedience can make a whole family
S. ... 2 "2/
BOOKS AND THEIR VALUE.
HERE was once a little boy called Jack.
Jack was only four years and a half old,
but he was very fond of stories. "Tell
me something, please, mamma," he often said, as he
brought his little footstool to his mother's side, and
then she told him many pretty stories.
One day she told him about St Vincent Paul, that
angel of goodness who went about the streets gather-
ing together little lost, starving children, and took
them to his home and fed them, and was father and
mother and everything to them.
Mamma, do you know St Vincent Paul? asked
Jack, when his mamma had finished.
ilL dl--,, I
- ---- Si
BOOKS AND THEIR VALUE. g
Oh, no, darling," replied the mother. "St Vin-
cent Paul has been dead a great many years now."
But how do you know all that he has done, then ?"
asked the child.
I have read it in a book," answered his mother.
Another day, his mamma told him the story of Joan
of Arc, who was a young French shepherdess, famed
in history for her extraordinary courage and daring.
Mamma, did you ever see Joan of Arc ?" asked
Jack, when the story was finished.
"No, Jack, never," said his mother. "Joan of
Arc has been dead still longer than St Vincent Paul."
"Then how can you know what she did ?" asked
the child again.
I have read all about her," replied his mother.
Jack's mamma once told him of some travellers
who had crossed the great rolling sea in large ships,
ind had arrived in a country where the soil is com-
posed entirely of sand; where the people had black
skins instead of white; where there were large four-
footed animals with enormous humps on their backs;
trees which bore fruit full of juice as white and sweet
as milk; and many other wonderful things which
greatly interested little Jack.
"Have you ever been in that country, mamma?
xo BOOKS AND THEIR VALUE.
and have you seen all those strange things ? asked
the boy again.
"Oh, no, dear; it is too far away," said the mother.
Then how do you know what it is like ?" asked
"Because I have read about it," said his mamma.
One day when his mamma had gone out, Jack
began to weary very much, because he thought he
would have no story all that day.
Then he began to think if all his mother's beautiful
stories were to be found in books, he might try and
find some out for himself.
So he went and took a book from the table, but
poor little Jack quite forgot that he had not yet been
taught to read, and so when he opened it, he saw
nothing but funny black marks all over the white
He shut the book and opened it at another place,
but still there were only the strange little black marks
to be seen upon the white paper.
He turned the pages over and over, but from the
beginning to the end it was all the same thing.
Jack felt that this book was quite beyond him,
and as he could not understand anything in it, he
put it back to its place. Then he began to weary
BOOKS AND THEIR VALUE. I
more than ever, but at last he fell fast asleep as he
sat waiting and watching for his mother.
As soon as she returned, Jack awoke and ran to
"Mamma," he asked, eagerly, what must I do
before I can understand all the pretty stories in your
My child," replied his mother, "you must learn
to read "
Learn to read that you may become wise; cultivate
your mind and enrich it with the experience and dis-
coveries of great men.
"' L, -' !- -
THE LOST BIRD.
ITTLE Edith was playing in her mother's
room one day.
In this room there was a very wide fire-
place; but there was no fire in it now, for it was
spring-time, and the days were warm and sunny.
All at once there was a strange fluttering noise
heard in the chimney. Edith was very frightened,
and wished to hide herself; but her mother took hold
of her hand, and led her to the fireplace.
"Come with me, dear, and we shall see what is
making this strange noise," she said.
The little girl did as she was told, and when they
THE LOST BIRD. 13
had looked up the great black chimney, they dis-
covered a poor little bird clinging to the wall, which
presently fell at Edith's feet, trembling with fear.
It was the fluttering of its wings which had made
the strange noise that had frightened Edith so much.
The little girl raised the trembling bird very gently.
She was quite delighted to have it in her hands, and
never thought of it being frightened.
"The little bird is not happy here, Edith," said
her mother, for it is separated from its father and
mother; and they will also be very sad, because they
have lost their little one."
Let us send it back to its father and mother,"
said Edith, who was a good little girl, and had a
kind heart; "but see, mamma, it cannot fly yet; it
is not strong enough !"
So they put the bird into a cage, and they put the
open cage out at the window; and very soon they
saw the father and mother fly round about it, and at
last go inside and tenderly welcome their little lost
When the little bird became strong enough to use
its wings, it flew away. But when evening came, and
the tired little bird wished to sleep, it did not go back
to its nest, it did not shelter itself among the branches
14 THE LOST BIRD.
of the trees; it came and knocked at Edith's window,
and perched itself in the little cage which had been
its home when it was lost and helpless.
And every morning, after it had sung its song of
thanks, it departed; but it always returned in the
For all its little life long it remembered the kind
action that had been done to it by Edith.
THE HAPPY FAMILY.
HIS is the picture of a watch-dog.
This great dog was kept the whole day
attached to his kennel by an iron chain,
and he wearied very much, because he was a solitary
He had only one friend, and this was a beautiful
little cat that stayed in the house, and with which he
had always been great friends.
One day pussy heard the great dog whining and
16 THE HAPPY FAMILY Y.
barking most piteously. She could not play any
longer, she was so troubled, and went to see if she
could amuse him.
Soon after this, pussy had a family of little ones,
but she did not know where she could put them to
keep them safe. The poor mother was very anxious
about her children. She would have liked to have
sheltered them in a comfortable house where they
would be safe and warm.
The great dog guessed what pussy was wanting,
and one day when she was going past with a very
troubled face, he called the little cat, took her into
his kennel, and left her sole mistress of his dwelling.
Pussy was very happy, and very soon had all her
little ones installed in the kind dog's house. She
fed them and brought them up there, and all this
time the good dog slept outside, on the cold ground,
without complaining once.
So when the little kittens grew, and were able to
go out and in the kennel, the kind watch-dog was
no longer alone; for he was surrounded by friends
who loved him, caressed him, and played with him
And though the great dog was still a captive, he
was no longer weary, for he was quite happy in the
THE HA PP Y FA MIL Y 17
midst of the little family, who were so much indebted
I I 4i 5
THE NEW-YEAR'S GIFT.
HERE was once a little brother and sister,
called Charles and Caroline. It was New-
Year's Day-a day when every little boy
and girl expect to have at least one present.
These little children's father and mother were not
rich, but they were not poor either; and so, besides
many other little gifts, Charlie and Caroline found
themselves the happy possessors of ten shillings each
to spend on whatever they liked best.
Their mamma took them to a beautiful toy-shop in
the town, and told them to take their choice of the
pretty things around them.
TIE NEWLY YEAR'S GIFT r9
Caroline was very fond of dolls. She could not
have too many of them; and so she bought ten shil-
lings' worth of dolls! She got a great many for that,
and there were all kinds-ladies, servants, babies,
gentlemen; fourteen people altogether-that is to say,
Caroline was quite burdened with such a large
family, and her brother noticed her perplexity.
I would like very much to buy a carriage to put
all those people into," said he.
"Oh yes, do, dear Charlie !" cried Caroline, quite
delighted; "we will play together. Buy a carriage;
but it must be a very beautiful one."
Oh, yes, it must be very beautiful. Let me see
some carriages, please," said Charles to the shopman.
The shopman immediately produced a splendid
carriage, drawn by two magnificent white horses, har-
nessed with silk and gold. On the box was seated
a great fat coachman, frizzed and powdered, and
dressed in a scarlet coat, yellow breeches, and white
stockings. Behind the carriage stood two footmen in
the same costume.
"Oh, how beautiful! that is the very thing!" cried
both the children at once. How much is this car-
riage ?" asked Charles, with a very important air.
20 THE NE W YEAR'S GIFT1
"Ten shillings," replied the shopman.
"There they are, then," said Charles, placing his
two crown-pieces on the counter. The next thing to
be done was to instal the dolls in their lovely car-
riage, and the children set about their work eagerly.
But what was their disappointment when they dis-
covered that there was only room for four !
"What are we to do with all the others?" asked
Caroline, looking at her brother disconsolately.
The others !" replied Charlie, equally perplexed.
Then their mamma, who had accompanied the
children, seeing their difficulty, advised them.
Instead of buying a carriage, why not buy an
omnibus, when you have so many people to put in-
side ? It is not so pretty, perhaps, but there would
be plenty of room for every one."
And the shopman brought forward a large omnibus,
made exactly like the real ones which carry you from
one end of London to the other.
The brother and sister looked at it, and at each
other, and consulted about it a long time before they
could come to any decision. The carriage was so
beautiful, but the omnibus would be so useful With
the one, only four would be provided for; with the
other, fourteen !
THE NEW YEAR'S GIFT 21
Charlie saw all those advantages in a moment, and
pointed them out to his sister, who was still gazing
with longing eyes at the glittering carriage, with its
gay horses, and footmen blazing in scarlet and gold.
Yes, I think you are quite right, Charlie," she
said at last, with a sigh. I know it will be more
useful, and so we shall just take it."
Jou have done well, my dear children," said their
mamma, who had been looking on all the while, won-
dering how her little ones would decide. I am glad
you are able to prefer the useful to the ornamental;
do not be attracted by pomp and show, and always
remember that 'All is not gold that glitters "
SERVANT AND FRIEND.
"HORSE was one day feeding quietly in a
beautiful green meadow.
At one end of the meadow there was
a road, and the horse came every now and then to
watch the people as they passed along.
Among the passengers was a good, honest man,
who went to the neighboring town every day to buy
bread for his little ones at home. He passed very
near the gate, and the horse neighed after him as if
it were bidding him good-morning.
Then the man stopped for a minute to caress the
horse, speak to him kindly, and pat his neck gently,
after which he continued his way.
Another man who went to the town every day,
took the same road. IHe was a hard, cruel man, but
SER VANT AND FRIEND. 23
the horse did not know this, and ran and saluted him
like the first.
But the cruel -man, instead of caressing him,
cracked a great whip over him, and the poor horse
galloped away into the middle of the field, shaking
his smarting head.
While the two men were in the town a heavy rain
began to fall, and the small stream near the meadow,
which they had to cross on their return, was swollen
Into a river.
The good, kind man arrived first, but alas! how
was he to get across? The water was still rising,
and he must either submit to plunge in up to the
waist, or wait till it had subsided.
But the man could not wait; he was taking home
bread for supper, and his little children were hungry.
He was just about deciding to walk through the
water at the risk of catching a bad cold, when he
heard a neigh in the meadow.
He recognized the voice; it was the horse he had
caressed in the morning, and he called him to come
and help him.
The horse leapt over the gate in a moment, and
approached the kind man whom he immediately
24 SER VANT AND FII',END.
The man jumped on his back, and the wise horse
crossed the water without any difficulty, and landed
his friend on the other side. And the good man did
not get the least wet, not even the sole of his shoe.
Then the horse returned to the meadow.
Presently the cruel man returned from the town
he had seen what the horse had just done, and so,
wishing to be carried over the stream also, he called
on him to come as coaxingly as he could.
But the horse, recognizing the man who had -truck
him in the morning, would not look near. He fled
to the very other end of the meadow, and left him
to his fate.
And the unkind man was obliged either to get
soaked, or wait till the waters decreased.
It is only when the master is the friend of his
servant, that the servant is the friend of his master.
-- ? _- ,-
: _ _- - - -
THE STORY OF A SEED.
HIS is the picture of a little girl called
Minnie. She was such a sweet gentle
child that every one loved her.
Minnie's mamma had three of those pretty little
yellow birds called canaries, the first of which came
from those warm sunny isles near Africa, called the
Canary Isles. Minnie was very fond of those birds,
and it was she who cared for them, fed them,
and cleaned their cage every day. As she never
frightened them, they had no fear of her; they
liked to see her coming near them, and sang their
most beautiful songs by way of thanking her for
26 THE STORY OF A SEED.
all her kindness. When their cage was opened they
would fly on to their young mistress's shoulder, or
perch themselves on her finger.
They were not the least unhappy at being shut
up in a cage, because they had been born there and
brought up in it for a good while by their father
Canaries come from a country where the sun
shines all day long, and they are very fond of it.
Minnie knew this, and so she often put their cage
out at the window to let them catch some of his
Canaries eat sugar, hard-boiled eggs, bread, lin-
seed, and chickweed. One day, Minnie saw that
some of the seeds had fallen from the cage on to
the ground; she was going to pick them all care-
fully up, but her mamma told her to let them
"Leave them, my daughter," she said; "let those
seeds stay in the earth, and you will see what will
It was spring-time, that season of the year when
everything begins to bud and blossom. About a
week afterwards, Minnie perceived a little green
point appearing where the seeds used to be, but
TIHE STORY OF A SEED. 27
so small, so very small, that it only peeped through
the earth. Minnie took care not to touch it, for
she knew it was God who had made it grow there,
and she wished to know what He was going to do
with it. The next day, the little green point had grown
larger; it was a little bit above the ground, and you
could see the little seed at the end of the stalk.
But the seed was open and empty, and its contents
had remained in the earth, and given birth to this
Next day, Minnie came and looked at it again;
it had grown larger, and two little leaves were
already beginning to form.
Ah," said Minnie, "it is a bunch of chickweed
that is going to grow here, and my birds love it
so much; how happy they will be !"
Minnie did not like to leave her dear little plant,
it seemed so weak and helpless yet, and would be
so easily pulled out of the ground and broken, that
the little girl was kept very anxious about it; as if
God, who made the very tiniest leaf, was not always
there to protect it !
However, Minnie must go to school; and, as she
was a good little girl, she never let anything come
between her and her duty; but every evening, when
28 THE STORE Y OF A SEED.
she returned, she went and looked at her little plant,
and examined it carefully, and every evening she saw
that the stalk was growing higher.
The two first leaves were now pretty large, and
below them were other two, which were also grow-
ing every day; and then came two new ones. The
stalk itself was growing, and Minnie no longer needed
to kneel down and peer into the earth to see it.
Oh, my little birds," said she to her canaries,
" sing, for you have sowed a little seed which is
growing, and it will be all for you !"
Minnie now began to be impatient for the little
seeds to grow on the top of the stalk, but still they
were nowhere to be seen.
Wait a little, my child," said her mamma. Wait;
everything requires time. What is done in a hurry is
always badly done;" and the little girl was obedient,
and waited patiently.
At last, one day, two more leaves opened, and
Minnie all at once saw between those leaves-what ?
a cluster of seeds or flowers,-those seeds for which
she had waited so long. She would have liked to
pluck them at once, and given them to her canaries,
but it was too green. Minnie thought it was not
ripe enough yet, and so she did not pull it up.
THE STORY OF A SEED. 29
Little by little the leaves opened more and more,
and the flowers grew down the stalk a good way.
Minnie thought this was the fruit, but one morning
when she went to look at it, all the flowers were gone,
and nothing but little green balls remained. Minnie
was very much surprised, and very sorry that all the
flowers were gone. She thought that she had been
deceived, but her mamma comforted her, and told
her that this was really the fruit. She explained to
her that nearly all plants produce blossoms first,
and that it is those flowers which afterwards form
themselves into fruit.
Her mamma assured her that the fruit would very
soon come, and she repeated that it only required a
But Minnie thought it would be a very long time,
and began to get angry, and say that she wished it
"Ah, well, my little daughter, pull it up now, and
your little birds will have nothing. You cannot
hurry God's work."
Minnie felt she had been naughty, and begged her
mother to forgive her, promising to be obedient and
After a few days the flowers fell off, and in their
30 THE STORY OF A SEED.
places remained real seeds, at first very small, and
soft, and green; but gradually they grew, and in a
short time they became so large that the little stalk
bent beneath their weight.
"You may now pluck your little plant, Minnie,"
said her mamma one day. "You have given it
plenty of time to grow, and it is now ripe."
You can imagine how happy the little girl was
then. She thanked her mother with all her heart
for having given her such good advice, and God
who had made such beautiful things, and arranged
everything so wisely.
Then Minnie joyfully plucked the little plant, and
placed it in the cage of her much-loved birds.
LESSONS FROM A GOAT.
R ARNOT one day took his little daughter
with him to the Zoological Gardens.
This little girl's name was Julia. She
was quite delighted with this beautiful walk, because
there is a fine menagerie in those gardens, where there
are all sorts of animals-lions, tigers, elephants, birds,
and a collection of pretty little goats.
Julia had a penny, and as there was a man selling
32 1 LESSONS FROM A GOAT
toys of sugar and cakes at the entrance to the gardens,
it was necessary that this penny should be spent.
But what was she to buy with it? A penny will
not buy very much. She saw some very tempting
pink and white candy, and she thought she would
like some of that.
"But," said Julia to herself, "after I have eaten it.
there would be nothing left !"
Would she take a trumpet instead ?" asked the
man. But the sound of this instrument is not very
sweet, even at the best, and if its frail pipe were
broken, there would soon be an end to all music.
"A balloon ?" It would very soon burst.
A doll ?" What if its legs or arms tumbled off?
With this, Julia caught sight of some small rolls,
which were very unlikely things to attract the fancy of
a little girl who had a penny to spend on whatever
she liked best.
But Julia did not hesitate any longer, for she knew
that animals liked bread, and so she bought two rolls,
that she might give a little pleasure to the poor
You see this dear little girl had a kind heart. First
of all, Julia and her papa gave the elephant a bite of
the bread. This huge animal seized the little morsel
LESSONS FROM A GOAT. 33
by the end of his long trunk with the utmost clever-
ness, and then put it into its great mouth, which would
have held a whole dozen of rolls without the least
difficulty. Then they passed on to the giraffe, and
as it could not stretch its long neck through the iron
railings, Mr Arnot put the little piece of bread on the
end of his stick, and handed it into the cage.
They went on to the camel, to the antelopes,
ostriches, and each had their small share. But unfor-
tunately the rolls were not large, and a very little
piece remained when Julia found herself face to face
with a charming family of white goats. Those little
animals were assembled in a small park carpeted with
beautiful green turf, and enclosed with a pretty wire
railing. In the middle of this park was a little wooden
shed strewed with hay, which had a most appetising
perfume. Nothing could be cleaner or prettier than
this little habitation.
At the outside of the shed lay the father, his head
raised and eyes half closed, as if he were sleeping
and watching both at once.
Here and there around him played the young
goats, with their horns just beginning to peep out
through their shaggy hair. The mother seemed to
pay no attention to her family, and, with her two feet
34 LESSONS FROM A GOAT.
on the fence, she bleated to the passers-by, as if
soliciting their caresses.
"Oh, what a lovely goat!" cried Julia. "You
shall have all the rest of my bread; take it all to
At the first words, the goat put its nose through the
railings, but all at once smelling the bread, which it
was on the point of seizing, it jumped down and shook
its pretty head, as if it were saying, No, thank you."
Stay said Julia, very much surprised; why
will it not take my bread? Do goats not like
But another child passed, then a lady, then a gentle-
man, and the goat ate every bit of bread they offered.
Julia presented hers a second time, but the goat smelt
it again, and still shook its head. The little girl was
very much grieved, and could not understand why
the goat always refused her bread. She almost felt
inclined to get angry with the animal, but she restrained
herself, and turning to one of the keepers, she asked
him if the bread was good enough.
Have you offered it only to the goat, my child ?"
asked the man.
Oh, no ; the elephant, and the giraffe, and the
birds have all had some."
LESSONS FROM A GOAT. 35
"And have they eaten it?"
"Oh, yes; every one of them," said Julia.
Then the bread must be good enough. Are your
hands quite clean, my child ?"
Julia looked at her hands, and was surprised to see
that they had got soiled; for she had taken off her
gloves while feeding the animals.
"But why does the goat alone refuse my bread,
when all the other animals have taken it ?"
Because goats are less greedy and more particular
and delicate than the others. They would rather do
without a pleasure than accept anything which is
offensive to them. See, my child, here is some
water; wash your hands, then take the bread back
to the goat, and you will see it is all true I have
Julia washed her hands, and returned to the
little white goat. She offered her bread again, and
this time the goat ate it with very evident plea-
"Thank you, dear little goat, for the lesson you
have given me," said the gentle girl; I will profit by
it, and never forget it."
Never forget, dear children, when you are wrong,
and your fault is found out, to thank the friend
36 LESSONS FROM A GOAT.
who tells you of it, instead of being cross and angry,
and remember how Julia thanked the little white
,,- ,Y .
*"f ^ i 'a
,-.-- =-. __. ..-"^ l ,
LESSONS FROM THE VINE.
OT long ago there lived a little boy called
One day the gardener came to his
father's house to prune the fruit-trees and vines; and
Fred, to whom his father had given three small
plants, followed him into the garden that he might
see how it was done.
The gardener had a large knife in his hand, with a
round point, and this he used very skilfully and with
He examined each plant and looked over all the
new buds carefully. Then he took his knife and cut
away all that he thought necessary, and soon there
was very little wood left about the vines.
38 LESSONS FROM THE VINE.
"Why have you taken away all that?" asked Fred,
pointing to the fallen branches. If you cut off so
much, there will be no grapes in summer."
"They will come all in good time, my little boy,"
said the gardener, and they will be all the better
for this bad, useless stuff being away. There will be
more grapes, and consequently more wine."
Fred did not ask the gardener how the vines should
be pruned, and he cut his own three plants accord-
ing to his own fancy, believing that he had done the
vine an enormous deal of good.
Spring came, and the vines blossomed; summer
followed, and the raisins ripened; and when autumn
came round the grapes were magnificent; the plants
bent under their load. Fred had never seen so many
I cut my vine so well, it ought to bear a great
deal of fruit," he thought
Fred hastened to the end of the garden where
stood the three plants which he had pruned in spring.
But what a sad surprise! what a disappointment!
Fred's vines were laden with a perfect forest of
branches and leaves. But as for grapes, there were
none, or nearly none; two little grapes among three
LESSONS FROM THE VINE. 39
Poor bewildered Fred then understood that he
must not have pruned them rightly, and so he went
to look for the gardener.
"Zadok," said the boy, will you be kind enough
to show me what I ought to have done to make my
vines produce plenty of fruit ?"
My boy," said the gardener, "you must first
learn the difference between the good and the bad
wood, and be sure that you take all the useless parts
And this is what each one of you, dear children,
must do in the garden of your own hearts. Search
out all the weeds and all the roots of bitterness, lest
they grow up and choke the good seed, and, like
those vine plants, you bear no fruit.
- A-- -
LILLA AND HER FLOWERS.
ILLA HOPE lived with her mother in a
very small room at the top of a high
Her mother was a widow, Lilla an orphan, and
both were very poor.
Lilla's mother worked incessantly from morning
till night, that she might gain their bread, and the
little girl, seated by her side, helped her mother, and
sewed as fast as her little fingers could go.
sewed as fast as her little fingers could go.
LILLA AND IER FLOWERS. 41
But, notwithstanding all their industry, their earn-
ings were not sufficient, and very often the poor
mother deprived herself of food, that her child might
want for nothing.
The mother and daughter loved each other with
all their hearts, and were quite happy when they were
together. Lilla was very careful to be a good girl,
that she might comfort and please her mother, and
the latter did her best to teach and amuse her child.
They were both very fond of flowers, but as they
had no garden, they had planted some in a wooden
box on their window-sill, which fortunately looked
towards the sun.
There were roses, mignionette, convolvulus, and
a great many other pretty things; but how joyful
Lilla was when they began to bud and blossom!
She tended them with the greatest care, watered
them, and took away any little insects which were
likely to hurt her dear flowers.
Then she put little slips of wood into the box, and
fixed them together all round with fine cord, so that
when the convolvulus grew, it crept along and through
the tiny fence, and very soon their pretty leaves formed
a perfect bower of verdure before the little window.
There were also, far down among the leaves, a
42 LILLA AND HER FLOWERS.
multitude of pretty blue flowers. At first those
flowers looked very much like little balls of green
satin. But little by little, thanks to the rays of sun-
light which beamed upon them, every day they grew;
and one morning when Lilla and her mamma opened
the window, they found their convolvulus covered
with beautiful bell-like flowers !
Those flowers were perfectly charming, they were
of all colours, white, and pink, and blue, and the
leaves of those flowers were as soft and fine as velvet.
Their colours were so rich and so beautifully blended
that the very sight of them filled the child's heart
with a rapture she could not express.
It was the sun that had made all those lovely
flowers bloom, and now it shone upon them as if
it took pleasure in smiling on its work. And the
flowers themselves turned gracefully round on their
flexible stalks, in order to catch the sun's rays, and
thank them for being so kind.
The day was passed in ceaseless admiration, the
mother and child could talk of nothing but their
flowers. Every now and then their eyes would
wander from their seam to the window; then the
mother and daughter looked at each other with a
smile which fully expressed all their pleasure.
LILLA AND HER FLOWERS. 43
But this happy day came to an end like all others.
Evening closed in, and Lilla perceived that all the
flowers of the convolvulus, which had opened them-
selves so gaily in the morning, now closed their bells
one after the other.
The bewildered little girl looked up to the heavens
to seek for the sun, but there was no longer any sun,
-it had disappeared !
0 mamma!" cried the child, "there is no more
sun, and look how our poor flowers are fading Ah !
our beautiful flowers the sun has gone, and our
flowers are dead !"
Never mind, my child," said the mother, "the
sun is only gone for a little while, and our flowers are
not dead. The sun is now shining upon other flowers
and making them grow, and ours are only gone to
sleep till he comes back. To-morrow morning we
shall see the sun again, and then our dear flowers
will bloom as sweetly as ever."
The next morning the sun rose brightly, and the
flowers opened their bells again, and were more
numerous and lovely than on the first day. Then
Lilla was quite happy and comforted.
You see, my child," said the mother, taking her
on her knee and stroking her golden head, the sun
44 LILLA AND HER FLOWERS.
is the emblem of God. Sometimes it seems to be far
from us, but it always returns and never leaves us in
darkness and despair. And if it is certain that the
sun brings daylight to chase away the night, it is also
certain that God will wipe away all our tears and give
us joy instead of sorrow. Let us work then, Lilla,
work and endure with patience whatever is sent to
us, and let us trust in God as the flowers trust in the
sun, for, of all our hopes of happiness, that alone is
a sure one, and will never be deceived."
-. -\' r"-- -" --g^ --
HO does not like potatoes? I think every
one likes potatoes, and they are quite
right, for they are a healthy, nourishing
food, which agrees with almost every one, and ac-
commodates itself to every purse.
I am sure, my little readers, you all know the plant
which produces the potato? You know that this
plant, which grows to about a foot in height, produces
a little star-like flower, sometimes lilac, sometimes
white, to which succeeds a little green berry, in which
you will find the seed enclosed. You also know that
this fruit is not for eating, and that the potato, the
part which we use for food, grows far down in the
46 THE POTATO-PLANT
earth, at the very foot of the plant, and attached to
You will know all that if you have ever seen the
plant, or if you are attentive to your lessons. But
there are very many children, less fortunate than you,
who are quite ignorant of those simple things. Listen,
then, to the story which I am going to tell you.
Mr Grant had three children; the eldest was called
Harry, the second Frank, and the third Rose.
One day this gentleman bought a field, and he said
to his three children,-
"I am going to divide this field among you, and
I will give you each a square, so that you may culti-
vate whatever you like in it."
Harry, who liked red, planted roses in his; Frank,
who liked yellow best, filled his with marigolds and
buttercups; and little Rose, who loved white, had
nothing but daisies.
But papa had his little ones to feed, and so he
planted his with potatoes.
When summer had come, roses, buttercups, and
daisies flourished and bloomed so well that the little
children were charmed with their brilliant gardens.
The potatoes bloomed also, but their modest
THE POTATO-PLANT. 47
flowers, half concealed under their dark leaves,
seemed quite pale and faded beside their gay
"Why has our father, who is so wise, planted that
sombre-looking flower," said the children to each
other. How much prettier the field would be if it
was filled with daisies, or buttercups, or roses!"
The summer passed, and the flowers faded, papa's
potatoes as well as the children's pretty flowers. All
the withered stalks lay on the ground, and there was
nothing for the children to gather but dry leaves.
But papa brought a band of workers into his field.
With iron hoes they opened the furrows, and drew
from their midst potatoes of excellent quality.
They put those potatoes into large bags, which they
laid upon waggons, and there were so many of them
that it was easy to see the children would have plenty
to eat all the year.
And the children, who were very fond of potatoes,
no longer thought of blaming their father; instead of
that, they repented of their own folly, and had the
courage to confess that they were in fault.
"Father," they said, "forgive us, for we did not
choose well. We thought ourselves wiser than you.
We thought your flowers far less beautiful than our
48 THE POTATO-PLANT
own, and we despised those poor stalks which we did
not know had potatoes at their roots."
"My dear children," replied the father, "I forgive
you with all my heart, but only on one condition,
and it is this, that you remember all your life what
has just happened, and," he added, with great serious-
ness, "that you never again commit the same fault."
Oh, no, papa, we will never do it again," replied
the children, somewhat surprised at the grave tone
in which their father spoke to them. We can
never commit the same fault again, for now we know
"You do not know them all, my dear children,"
replied the father. "The world, you see, is like a
field, in which all sorts of plants are growing. There
are some people who shine as brilliantly as the beau-
tiful flowers you have cultivated, and there are others
who live and die humble and despised, like my useful
"And the world judges as you have judged. It
makes a great deal of some, and despises and scorns
others: oh, imitate it no longer, my children Love
beauty since it charms the eye; but honour virtue
which does good in silence. Seek it, imitate it, for
when the harvest time is come, and death the great
THE POTATO-PLANT. 49
reaper will cut us down, what fruit will God find in
us? In the brilliant flowers there will be nothing
but a bunch of withered stalks, and in the humble
potato plants a mine of wealth!"
LONG time, dear children, after the death
of Adam and Eve, mankind forgot God
and became very wicked. They no longer
fulfilled the duties that had been given them to do,
for God never intended us to be idle, they did not
love each other, they never prayed, they committed
all sorts of iniquity. God seeing their wi ;kedness,
resolved to punish them but there was one good
and virtuous family among them who still remained
faithful to*God, and so He did not wish to punish
them with the others: for God is just, and He never
confounds those who do well with those who do evil.
NOAH'S ARK. 51
The father of this family was called Noah; he was
a Patriarch, that is to say, "chief of a tribe," for in
those days there were no kings, it was the father
who exercised power over his family and servants,
and the word Patriarch signifies, "government of a
So God told Noah to build a large house of wood,
in the form of a boat, very close and well lined with
pitch inside and out.
Pitch is a kind of thick black stuff, which fills the
smallest holes in the wood upon which it is spread,
so that no water can penetrate through it. And
though Noah had perhaps never made use of this
before, he believed in God and did as he was told.
The work which God had given Noah to do was
both long and fatiguing, but Noah immediately set
himself to execute it. He knew that all God's com-
mandments are wise, and that we always do right in
obeying them. Then Noah cut down trees, sawed
planks of wood, and constructed, as God had com-
manded him, the building which was called Noah's
Ark; and when the Ark was finished, God told Noah
to go into it with his wife, their children, and two of
every kind of beast and bird upon the earth. He
also told Noah to take into the Ark sufficient food to
52 NOAH'S ARK.
serve him and his family, as well as all the animals
that were with him for a certain time. Noah did all
that God commanded him, and as soon as they were
all shut up in the Ark, a heavy rain began to fall which
covered the whole earth with water. Very soon the
small streams became rivers, then seas, and little by
little the waters rose till they covered the trees, then
even the tops of the highest mountains, so that every
living thing upon the earth was drowned. The sinful,
wicked men whom God wished to punish were all
drowned, and only the Ark,-the Ark made of wood
and lined with pitch, floated like a great ship, and
always remained on the surface of the waters which
raised it along with them.
This great and destructive rain was called the
Deluge. It fell incessantly for forty days and forty
nights; then God made it stop, and raised a great
wind, which, sweeping along the mass of waters,
gradually dispersed them, and the Ark descended
little by little.
Meanwhile, Noah, not being able to see whether
the earth was dry or not, because the windows of the
Ark were closed, opened one of them and sent forth
a raven. Ravens are birds of prey; they feed upon
dead bodies and carcases; and as this raven did not
NOAH'S ARK. 53
return to the Ark, Noah concluded that it must have
found something to eat, floating upon the waters.
Seven days after, he opened the window again, and
sent forth a dove. A dove is a kind of pigeon, very
much more gentle and delicate than ravens. The
doves' feet are tinged with a pale rose-pink, and are
The dove had not been gone long from the Ark
before it returned. Noah understood from that that
the earth was still covered with the waters, and that
it had found nowhere to rest.]
So Noah waited seven days longer. After that
time, he sent forth the dove again, and this time it
returned, bearing in its mouth a little branch of a
tree. It was an olive branch, and Noah understood
from that that the waters must have greatly abated
since the trees were again visible. He thought it
wise, however, to wait other seven days. Then he
opened the Ark, and all the men, women, and
children, and the animals, were allowed to go out
The earth was nearly dry again. The sun shone,
and the plants were beginning to reappear. The
animals betook themselves to the country, and the
birds flew into the air. How happy they must have
54 NOAH'S ARK.
been to be saved from this great destruction! I
leave you to imagine how grateful Noah and his
family were towards God !
Noah immediately erected an altar in remembrance
of the divine protection; and God caused a beautiful
rainbow to appear in the heavens, as a testimony that
He would preserve this protection to Noah, and his
children, and to all mankind that should come after
them, if they remained faithful to His command-
Yes, Noah was grateful to God for having told him
to build the Ark, for he was always ready and happy
to obey God. If he had not been obedient, and if
he had said, "This work is too difficult for me, I will
not do it;" or, "I have plenty time, I will commence
it soon;" or, if he had not had perseverance, and,
after beginning the Ark, he had grown tired of his
work, and left it without finishing it, what would have
become of him ? The deluge would have come, and
Noah, his wife, and their children, having no ark to
flee to for safety, would have been drowned, like the
rest of mankind.
See then, dear children, that you fulfil all your
undertakings with courage and fortitude, and accom-
plish all your duties perseveringly and patiently.
NOAH'S ARK. 55
You will certainly reap the reward; and God will
bless you and protect you, as He blessed and pro-
tected Noah and his family.
-.W-5.' ,' /
THE BOY AND THE BUTTERFLY.
NE day a butterfly, which was fluttering gaily
through the air, alighted on a flower. A
little boy saw it, and thinking it very pretty,
he thought he would like to try and catch it. He
chased it for a while, but each time the child came
near the butterfly, it rose into the air far beyond his
"Oh, leave it, dear child," said the mother, "leave
the pretty butterfly, and be content to see it flying
THE BOY AND THE BUTTERIZY 57
about happy and free; for if you touch it, it will lose
its beauty, and so your pleasure will be gone."
The little boy was obedient-he did not chase the
butterfly any more. He did what was much better :
he went to a corner of the garden, and gathered a
branch of honeysuckle, covered with fresh and fra-
grant flowers. Then he returned, and slipped quietly
near the butterfly, holding the branch quite steady in
his little hand. Very soon the butterfly alighted upon
the honeysuckle, and the little boy, quite enraptured,
could see it and examine it at his ease.
It was a pretty yellow butterfly, with wings soft as
velvet, enamelled with red and black spots which
looked like jewels. It had four wings, and those
wings were so light that their motion, though very
rapid, made not the slightest sound. During its flight,
the butterfly kept its feet folded up, but as soon as it
alighted, the little boy could count three on each side.
Then he saw it project a small trunk from its mouth,
fine as silk, which it thrust gently into the heart of
the flowers, and extracted its food without destroying
But butterflies cannot remain long in the same
place. In a few moments the yellow butterfly left
the branch of honeysuckle which the boy held so
58 THE BOY AND THE BUTTERFLY.
patiently in his hand, and flew here and there, and
passed from one flower to the other so swiftly that its
weight did not shake them in the least.
The little boy could not draw himself away from
this charming sight. He could not turn his eyes
away for a moment, lest the butterfly should fly off.
The earnest desire to possess it made him forget his
mother's wise advice, and when the butterfly, without
the least misgiving of danger, was peacefully sipping
the nectar from a rose, the child seized it Then he
opened his hand-but, alas what had become of the
charming insect? A soft glittering powder covered
the boy's fingers, and the poor butterfly, crushed
and trembling, lay with its pretty wings torn to
The child was bewildered and surprised at this sad
spectacle, and very soon great tears stood in his round
blue eyes. At last he could bear his grief no longer,
and he ran to hide it in his mother's breast.
His mother, seeing him so sorry and repentant for
the evil he had done, did not scold her child, but
comforted him as well as she could.
"My son," she said, "learn for the future to be
satisfied with the pleasures which God has given you,
and never forget that, in trying to seize what does not
THE BOY AND THE BUTTERFLY. 59
belong to you, you deprive yourselves and others of a
pleasure which cannot be recalled, by rendering it
useless, as you have just done this poor butterfly."
!' : .. .,
3 '4 I
1 -: f- i ~t- : 2.
OBERT GREY was a monitor or teacher in
a school, and he deserved his position, for
he had many good qualities.
He managed his little flock of pupils wonderfully.
THE PEACH-STONE. 61
He was zealous, eager to instruct, full of love of
order and discipline, and showed a good example in
But he had one great defect for a teacher!
He was impatient and rough with those of his
little pupils who could not immediately understand
the lessons and explanations he gave them.
Then he would shake them, mark them with bad
points, or send them back to their lesson.
And this impatience was neither reasonable nor
just; for when a pupil does not understand any-
thing, it is the teacher's business to explain it to
But if, instead of that, he repels the pupil, the
child learns nothing, and has a bad opinion of his
teacher, because he feels he is unjust.
So Robert, in spite of all his good qualities, was
not a perfect teacher. Without gentleness and patience
one can never hope to become that.
One day, when Robert had been more than usually
rough, the master called him as he was about to
Robert, my friend," said he, "you spoil all your
good qualities by your roughness towards your little
pupils, and you vex me very much."
62 THE PEACH-STONE.
"But, sir," replied Robert, "those stupid children
can understand nothing; their heads are as hard as
"Peach-stones are not always hard, sir," said
the master, bending a severe look upon Robert;
"God knows how to soften them like everything
Robert flushed, and dared not reply; he bade the
master good-bye, and went away to reflect upon his
All at once he perceived a peach-stone lying in
his path, and as it was on this very subject that his
thoughts were pondering, and that had been the
cause of his rebuke, he gave it a great blow with
his foot, and was about to kick it into the river, when
he was interrupted by a passer-by.
"Do not throw it away, sir," said a little old
woman, with an old-fashioned curtsey, "for though
"you cannot see it, there is a whole tree inside of that
stone, leaves, and flowers, and everything."
Robert turned towards the old woman, and looked
at her, without exactly comprehending what she was
I don't know that he thought this stone was dif-
ferent from any other, or that it enclosed a tree all
THE PEA CH-STONE. 63
ready made, but he lifted it up, and tried to break it
with his teeth. Vain effort! He tried it over and
over again, but he could make nothing of it.
Then he took his knife and tried to open it like a
nut, but it was impossible. He struck it again with
his boot, but the peach-stone was harder than the
boot, and it was the latter which threatened to give
Robert, with his accustomed violence, became
He wished, at all costs, to see inside of this peach-
stone, but the stone did not wish to let Robert in,
because he could not open it in the proper way.
"Sir," said the little old woman, "take it home
with you, and plant it in a little corner of ground,
water it every little while, and see that it has plenty
air and light, and some fine day that hard piece of
wood, which resists all your efforts to force it, will
gently open, and give you itself what you have been
trying all this while to snatch from it."
Then the teacher began to think of his little pupils,
whose heads he thought so very hard and impene-
What is required to soften this peach-stone?" he
64 THE PEA CH TONE.
"Only time and patience," answered the old
Then Robert understood what his master had said,
and that those were the very qualities necessary to
him in his daily work of instruction.
LUCY AND THE CATERPILLAR.
UCY VERNON went once every week to
spend the day with her grandmother.
There was a beautiful large garden round
the house, where the little girl romped and played to
her heart's content, while she enjoyed the fragrance
of the sweet flowers around her.
She never destroyed anything, because she knew
that would be naughty. One day she observed a
very tempting ripe peach on a small tree ; this lovely
peach was yellow, and pink, and soft as velvet; it
looked delicious, and Lucy immediately thought how
much her grandmother would like it; and, anxious
to present the beautiful fruit to her, she stretched out
her hand to pluck it; but below the peach her little
66 LUCY AND THE CATERPILLAR.
fingers came upon something soft and moving; she
looked at it, threw the peach away, and, with a great
cry, she fled as fast as her legs could carry her.
This soft moving thing was-a caterpillar.
John, the old gardener, who was only a few yards
off, nailing up some untidy branches, hastened to-
wards the little girl, and anxiously inquired what had
But Lucy, who was still trembling with fear, could
only answer by pointing with her finger to the peach
lying on the ground, to which the caterpillar still
"What! exclaimed old John. Is it this poor
little caterpillar which has made you cry like that?
How can such an innocent little beast make you so
frightened, my child ?"
"Oh, it is so ugly! replied Lucy, with a face of
"Not at all," said the gardener; "on the contrary,
there are some of them very pretty. See now," added
he, leading the child gently towards the peach, and
taking both the fruit and the insect into his hand,-
"see, my child, how beautifully this caterpillar is
dressed. One would think it was clothed in brown
velvet, with golden-coloured ribbons, and a double
LUCY AND THE CATERPILLAR. 67
necklace of pearls. It is God alone who has made
it so beautiful."
Is that true, John ?-let me see!" said Lucy,
stretching forward her neck, but keeping herself well
out of the way, and concealing her hands behind her
Then, reassured by the gardener's presence, and
also by a little reflection, she closely examined the
caterpillar, which was still creeping over the peach.
"Oh, look, John, it is going to eat my grand-
mother's peach !"
Not at all, my child; caterpillars do not eat fruit,
but they eat leaves, buds, and flowers, and often
destroy the trees very much."
"Then you see, John, they are very wicked."
"No, my child; to be wicked is to wish to do evil,
even when it is not in our power. But caterpillars
have no evil intentions; they eat, like us, because they
are created to live; and, like us, they choose what is
most agreeable to them. Accordingly, as their exist-
ence would interfere with our pleasure, by depriving
us of fruit, which they prevent from growing, we de-
stroy them because we are stronger than they. You
see, my child, if there was any wickedness here, it
would not be on the part of the caterpillars."
63 LUCY AND THE CATERPILLAR.
"Would it be us ?" asked Lucy.
"We do not think ourselves any more wicked for
that," replied the gardener. We must live, as well
as the caterpillars; and, like them, we apply our-
selves diligently to make the most of what God has
"Are caterpillars diligent, too ? asked Lucy.
"God has taught every creature, from the greatest
to the most insignificant, all that it needs to know to
accomplish its destiny. Without the instinct he has
given them, how would they know what to do ?"
"What do caterpillars do, then ?"
"Do you not know ? "
"No," said Lucy, shaking her head.
First of all, they work."
"For their children ? "
"No, caterpillars have no young ones."
Why do they need to work, then, John ?"
For their second life."
At those words, Lucy raised her large eyes to the
gardener's face, and looked at him with astonishment.
She had never heard of another life than that belong-
ing to our immortal souls, and that must be so very
far distant from a caterpillar.
"You see, my child, gardener though I be, I can-
LUCY AND THE CATERPILLAR. 69
not help loving those poor caterpillars, though they
vex me sadly by the destruction they cause. But
their poor despised life is very touching. Only think
of those poor little beasts being deprived of every
pleasure in this world. As I have told you, they
have neither house nor family, not even a little nest
to shelter them at night. They come in the begin-
ing of spring, on to the almost naked branches.
They creep there, and cling to them to try and get
some meagre nourishment. Sadly encumbered by
their short legs, which compel them to remain fast
by the branches on which they were born, they know
neither the beauty of the flowers nor the softness of
the air, nor how delightful it is to wander freely
through it. They inspire almost every one with the
aversion and disgust which you have just displayed;
but nothing discourages them, or turns them from
their task. They pass through this life, poor little
beasts, as if they understood from the first that it
could only last a very little while. They eat the
leaves and buds incessantly; but it is to collect
together materials for their work, just as you see my
old wife filling her mesh with thread before she begins
to net. Then, when the caterpillars have collected
sufficient, they stop eating, and commence to spin."
70 LUCY AND THE CATERPILLAR.
"To spin stockings and things, like your wife ?"
Oh no, little one," replied old John, laughing;
"they spin themselves a little house. First of all,
they wisely choose a quiet spot, where they will
neither be disturbed while at their work, nor ex-
posed after it is finished. They suspend themselves
from the branch of a tree, or take refuge in a hole in
the wall. Then they gradually spin out their thread,
and make a little covering so closely round them that
you cannot even catch a glimpse of the worker inside.
Then it undergoes a change. It is no longer a cater-
pillar, but a chrysalis, as it is called. A thing which
has neither head, nor feet, nor anything else, but
which still moves when it is touched. One would
never imagine it to be a beast, or rather an insect.
It looks more like a seed, or a fruit of some kind;
but at any rate it is not pretty."
"And is this their reward for having worked so
hard ?" asked the little girl.
"Oh no it is not dead yet; that sleep is only a
kind of preparation for their second existence.
When the cold, and snow, and bad weather are
all gone, and the sun shines and makes everything
on the earth full of life, the chrysalis opens, and the
LUCY AND THE CATERPILLAR. 71
former caterpillar spreads out its wings and flies into
the air, a brilliant butterfly.
"It is then that they are rewarded for all their
patience and industry. Formerly, the poor little
beast could do nothing but creep slowly over the
leaves; now, it flies from one flower to another, and
sips the honey as it goes. It feeds itself on their
fragrance, and drinks the dewdrops from the rose.
The caterpillar, you see, has to undergo much toil,
and solitude, and fatigue before it becomes a butter-
fly; but now it can wander through the most beautiful
gardens and verdant meadows. It flutters through
the air with a crowd of happy friends, light and
joyous as itself. Every eye looks upon it as one of
spring's greatest charms. It is admired and envied
by those who used to despise it. And, as if every
happiness was showered upon it, to make up for
its former want and hardships, it now has, under its
new form, a family of little ones."
Are little butterflies the children of the big ones,
then ? asked Lucy.
No, my child," replied kind old John. Large,
and small, white, yellow, and black butterflies, are
all so many different kinds, which live a longer or
shorter time, and take more or less time to hatch.
72 LUCY AND THE CATERPILLAR.
The butterflies' children are little eggs, which their
mothers lay carefully on the barks of trees and bushes,
and which, after some little time, turn into cater-
pillars. These little caterpillars have to undergo the
very same process as their parents; and if, in their
turn, they accomplish their work well, they will also
be transformed and rewarded in the same man-
"You are quite right to love the poor little cater-
pillars, John," said the child, for I see they are very
industrious little things. Give me that one, and let
me look at it, please."
And Lucy resolutely took the peach and the cater-
pillar from the hands of the old gardener, and set her-
self to watch it in silence.
It is strange," she said, presently, "that what
you have just told me about the caterpillar is very
like a story of our own lives which mamma told me.
I know quite well that we are people, and that cater-
pillars are animals, and have no soul like us,-that we
will live in another world, and that they die on earth.
But mamma told me that here there was nothing but
work for us, then death; and then, if we have been
good, we will turn into beautiful angels, and that is
so like the caterpillar !"
LUCY AND THE CATERPILLAR. 73
"Yes, my child, so it is," replied the gardener;
"and if we do our work well, there is an eternal
reward in store for us."
---^^ f^- llO
WILLIE AND THE VIOLIN.
R CLIFFORD was very fond of playing the
This gentleman had a son called Willie,
and the little boy was very happy when his papa
played him any tunes that he knew.
Then Willie would sing, and his father accompanied
the little voice very gently on the violin. It was very
pretty music, and did not seem at all difficult.
Mr Clifford had only to place the violin on his
shoulder, take hold of the instrument with his left
hand, and touch the cords one after another with his
fingers. Then the right hand held the bowstring,
which glided over the wires, and the violin played
' i - --;--
- -. ~ ~I : ":
WILLIE AND THE VIOLIN. 77
all that was wanted! That seemed so simple and
so easy to do, that little Willie wished to play too.
Give it to me, please, papa, and let me play,"
said the boy.
The father gave Willie his violin, and the little boy
placed it very adroitly on his shoulder, as he had seen
his father do, then he took the bow in his left hand,
and began to play !
But what a frightful noise he made! Instead of
the beautiful tunes it usually played, the violin did
nothing but howl and shriek It sounded so horrible
that the little boy, quite frightened, quickly gave
back the instrument to his papa.
But, papa, what do you do to make it play such
pretty tunes ?" asked Willie.
It is very simple, my son," replied the father;
" you have only to learn to play it "
Learn to refresh your mind with refined pleasures
which will ennoble it, so that you may not yield to
the temptation of those gross pleasures which would
only harden and degrade it.
THE BOUQUET OF VIOLETS.
NNA one day went out to walk with her
"It was in the month of April. Spring
had come, and brought pretty green leaves to the
trees, and everything was looking very bright and
Anna lived in London; but there are beautiful
parks for walking in there, and she was now going
TIlE BOUQUET OF VIOLETS. 79
to one of them with her mamma. At the entrance-
gate stood a poor old woman, selling little bouquets
of violets. She offered her pretty merchandise to
every passer-by, and kept repeating:
"Fresh violets! only twopence a bunch; and
they smell so sweetly."
Several gentlemen bought them to put in their
button-holes, but the greater number passed by with-
out even casting a glance at the pretty flowers; and
the poor woman repeated her cry in vain.
Mamma," said Anna, "will you buy me a bou-
quet ? "
Certainly, my child," replied the mother, and she
immediately took two pennies from her purse, and
gave them to the old woman, who, in exchange,
placed a very pretty bouquet in the little girl's
But Anna had not had it in her possession for a
few minutes before she began to destroy it, by pluck-
ing off the leaves and petals, and crushing them in
her hand as if they had been daisies out of the field.
Her mamma was about to correct her, but the old
woman was quicker than she.
Ah, little miss, what are you doing ?" cried she.
"Why are you tearing my poor flowers to pieces ? "
80 THE BOUQUET OF VIOLETS.
"They are mine now, because I bought them from
you," replied the little girl.
"True enough," said the old woman; you have
paid your money for the flowers, and you think no
more of them than of the pennies you gave me for
them. But I, miss-I love them, because of all the
flowers God has created, there are none more
beautiful than the violet. And if you knew
those simple flowers as well as I do, like me
you would also love them, and you would not
But I know violets quite well," replied the child,
quite surprised, and a little offended too, perhaps.
" I know that violets are not roses, or daisies, or any
other flower, but violets !"
"Oh, I daresay, miss, you know their colour, and
form, and leaves, and that pleases you; but their
character and qualities, so to speak, you know no-
thing about, and that is the reason you do not love
"I did not know flowers had any character-
have they ? asked Anna, turning to her mother.
Listen, my daughter, to what this good woman
says," replied the mother. "She knows all about the
violets, and will tell you their history."
THE BOUQUET OF VIOLETS. 81
"Will you tell me all about the violets ? asked
Anna, of the old woman.
With pleasure, miss ; for one never wearies speak-
ing of what they love.
"First of all, my child, breathe the sweet perfume
which my favourite flowers send forth. There is,
indeed, nothing more sweet or more agreeable than
Ah, well! notwithstanding all their charms, violets
are not the least proud. Instead of being vain, and
wishing to display themselves, they hide as much as
"Instead of showing themselves off to attract ad-
miration, like the roses, which need plenty of sun
and light, the dear little violets grow quietly in the
shade, in silent woods and deserted lanes.
They hide under their leaves, and keep each other
company; for they always grow in clusters, and they
ask nothing more.
"The morning dew, and a ray from the rising sun,
peeping through the trees, is all that those modest
"I know very well where they like to grow, and
can feel their perfume in the air a long way off; for
their fragrance betrays their hiding-place before the
82 THE BOUQUET OF VIOLETS.
eye can see them, and this modesty lends them a new
When we have enjoyed all the perfume this sweet
flower can give, they are collected, and the leaves are
distilled and preserved. Perfumers mix this scent in
the pomade which perfumes your hair; and they make
from it also scent for your handkerchiefs. Every one
likes the sweet perfume of the violet, for it is as harm-
less as it is sweet.
"So when this poor little flower is faded, and
withered, and torn-for, alas everything must come
to an end-the joy of giving pleasure still remains to
it. When it has lost all its beauty and freshness, it is
like those good, kind people who, though the bright-
ness of youth is passed, still preserve the lasting beauty
of a kind heart "
It is quite true, I know," said Anna, who had
been listening very attentively; "but I tore my pretty
bouquet without ever thinking of all that."
And Anna stood quietly looking with regret at the
remains of the violets scattered on the ground.
"My child," continued the old woman, who saw
how sorry and repentant Anna was, here is another
bouquet of violets for you. Accept them from me.
I think you will take better care of them now. But,
THE BOUQUET OF VIOLETS. 83
above all, my child, never again do anything without
: I -' '
THE TWO CATS.
HIS pretty white cat lived in a large country
house, where it passed all its time in per-
It was one of those beautiful Angora cats which
have such long soft fur, that in passing your hand
over, you would think it was velvet. It was pure
white, without a single mark, and it was large and fat
and lazy; in short, it was a magnificent cat.
Her mistress loved her very much, and she was
fed, and washed, and cared for by the servants; so
that this cat had no need to provide for its own
wants, and became very lazy and idle.
It had only to lick its soft paws, stretch itself on
the carpet or rug, and lie there purring for hours
THE TWO CATS. 85
together, with its half-closed eyes watching the hand
that caressed it.
One autumn evening the Angora, tired of sleeping,
-for rest tires one more than work when we have
too much of it -jumped from its soft cushion,
stretched itself, and walked slowly out towards the
park of the castle.
This beautiful park was full of tall trees,-oaks,
elms, and limes,-between which there had been wide
paths left, so that one might enjoy walking in the
shade. One of those paths led to the farm, which
could be discerned in the distance.
The Angora cat, as you may fancy, had never
taken the trouble to go there. At the farm the feed-
ing was very plain, everybody worked and toiled, and
only rested when they were really tired : what would
have become of the Angora there ?
However, out of curiosity,-for idleness causes
weariness, and weariness causes curiosity,-the cat
determined to explore the farm. It walked through
the beautiful pathway, taking good care to keep on
the turf which grew on its borders, for fear of soiling
its delicate feet in the dust.
So it went slowly along, exhibiting all the indiffer-
ence of a cat that is fairly wearied and worn out,
86 THE TWO CATS.
when suddenly another cat sprang out from behind
a cluster of bramble bushes, and stood face to face in
the path with the beautiful Angora.
The Angora leapt back with fear, for it had not
expected such an abrupt meeting. Then it curled
up its back, opened its eyes to their full extent, and
The other cat, on the contrary, seemed quite
charmed to meet with a companion. It advanced
towards the Angora with a mew, as much as to say,
"We do not know each other, but we belong to the
same family; so let us be friends."
The Angora perceiving its kindly intentions, doubt-
less understood that the new comer wished to do no
evil, for it seemed somewhat reassured, and sat ex-
amining the other in silence.
It was not a pretty cat by any means. It was
neither fat nor white; it was thin, and tall, and gray.
Its tail was short, and its legs were so long that it
seemed to be nothing but legs. One could easily
guess at first sight that it never received any nourish-
ment from its master's table, but that it gained all its
food by its own exertions.
In short, it was not an ornamental cat, like the
Angora, but a useful member of society.
IHE TWO CATS. 87
Its humble condition, however, did not prevent it
being clean and in good health; on the contrary, its tail
and feet were smooth and shining. It was so much
accustomed to exercise that it might have defied all
the squirrels and levrets in the neighbourhood at
leaping and running.
But the Angora appeared to scorn this useful,
playful cat. I do not know if cats can really
indulge in pride, but I almost think so, from the
condescending manner in which it looked at its new
friend. It wished to give no reply to its gentle ad-
vances, but turning round, and taking good care to
avoid touching the gray cat, it slowly returned home,
dragging its long tail over the grass; then, quicken-
ing its steps, it began to run as if it was afraid of
being pursued by its troublesome acquaintance.
But it did not need to trouble itself, for no one
ever thought of giving it chase. The gray cat, quietly
seated on the grass, watched its hasty retreat, without
being able to understand the cause of its scorn.
In reality, this scorn, or pride, if it was so, did not
arise from any motive. The gray cat was of the same
race as the Angora. The one had come into the
world white, the other gray; but there was no merit
attached to either one colour or the other. The one
88 THE TWO CA TS.
was descended from a race of long-tailed cats, which
originally inhabited Angora, in Asia; the other, from
a short-tailed race, which have always lived in Europe;
but the difference was the same to both of them, and
whatever the parents, country, colour, or profession, of
the two cats might be, still they were both cats.
After such hurried exercise, the white cat arrived
in the drawing-room quite out of breath, and again
stretched itself on its soft cushion. Meanwhile the
gray cat, hearing a rustling noise in the bushes beside
it, advanced stealthily, with eyes and ears wide open,
and commenced its work,-the midnight chase.
IS = --.
THE TWO CATS. 89
THREE months had passed since the cats first met,
and now winter had come, the trees had lost all their
pretty green leaves, the wind whistled and howled
through their bare branches, and for two days the
snow had been falling and covering the whole earth.
It was bitterly cold. The gray cat was sheltered
in the granary of the farm, for there was no longer
anything to hunt in the fields. But there was more
than enough of work for it in the granary, where the
fruits of the harvest-hay, corn, &c.-were stowed
away. Rats and mice are very fond of those things,
and they would very soon have been devoured and
destroyed if pussy had not been so active and
Pussy, a little wearied with not getting out, leapt
from the straw where it was lying crouched, and
approached the granary door. This door opened
into the fields, and below it was a little hole to
admit the passage of cats.
So pussy advanced to the door, and looked through
this hole, from which it could see the castle and the
solitary park in the distance. Then, at the foot of a
90 THE TWO CATS.
tree, among the beautiful snow, so pure and white, it
distinguished another object, not quite so white, but
living and moving.
Pussy quickly trotted down the stairs, and over the
snow it went, fearing neither cold nor anything else.
It very soon reached this object. Alas! it was a
poor cat, lying cold and benumbed in the snow. Its
eyes were closed, and it looked so weak and helpless
that it seemed to be nearly dead.
When this cat heard pussy approaching, it was
frightened, and tried to rise and run away. But it
had not strength enough, and fell back helpless
among the snow.
The kind pussy gently approached its sick friend;
then, as if it had recognized her, it all at once uttered
a very tender and compassionate mew, and seated
itself on the snow beside the poor cat.
The latter raised its head languidly, and stared for
a moment at the gray pussy, then replied with a.mew,
in a very sad voice indeed.
Who would have thought that this poor forsaken
cat, dying with cold and hunger, was the beautiful
Angora which formerly slept on velvet cushions, and
was waited upon by a servant !-this companion, this
favourite toy of the mistress of the castle !