Front Cover
 Front Matter
 Half Title
 Title Page
 To parents
 Chapter I
 Chapter II
 Chapter III
 Chapter IV
 Chapter V
 Chapter VI
 Chapter VII
 Chapter VIII
 Chapter IX
 Chapter X
 Chapter XI
 Chapter XII
 Back Cover

Title: The history of little Davy's new hat
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00048487/00001
 Material Information
Title: The history of little Davy's new hat
Physical Description: 125, 2 p., 1 leaf of plates : col. ill. ; 15 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Bloomfield, Robert, 1766-1823
George Routledge and Sons ( Publisher )
Publisher: George Routledge and Sons
Place of Publication: London ;
New York
Publication Date: [1880?]
Subject: Children -- Conduct of life -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Conduct of life -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Family -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Brothers and sisters -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Poor -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Pets -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Publishers' advertisements -- 1880   ( rbgenr )
Bldn -- 1880
Genre: Publishers' advertisements   ( rbgenr )
novel   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage: England -- London
Statement of Responsibility: by Robert Bloomfield.
General Note: Date of publication from inscription.
General Note: Publisher's advertisements follow text.
General Note: Frontispiece printed in colors.
Funding: Preservation and Access for American and British Children's Literature, 1870-1889 (NEH PA-50860-00).
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00048487
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: Baldwin Library of Historical Children's Literature in the Department of Special Collections and Area Studies, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved, Board of Trustees of the University of Florida.
Resource Identifier: aleph - 002222323
notis - ALG2560
oclc - 62121068

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Cover 1
        Cover 2
    Front Matter
        Page i-1
    Half Title
        Page i-2
        Page ii
        Page iii
    Title Page
        Page iv
        Page v
        Page vi
        Page vii
        Page viii
    To parents
        Page ix
        Page x
        Page xi
        Page xii
        Page xiii
        Page xiv
        Page xv
        Page xvi
    Chapter I
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
    Chapter II
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
        Page 29
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
        Page 34
    Chapter III
        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 39
        Page 40
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
    Chapter IV
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 55
        Page 56
    Chapter V
        Page 57
        Page 58
        Page 59
        Page 60
        Page 61
        Page 62
        Page 63
        Page 64
        Page 65
    Chapter VI
        Page 66
        Page 67
        Page 68
        Page 69
        Page 70
        Page 71
        Page 72
        Page 73
        Page 74
        Page 75
        Page 76
    Chapter VII
        Page 77
        Page 78
        Page 79
        Page 80
        Page 81
        Page 82
        Page 83
        Page 84
        Page 85
        Page 86
    Chapter VIII
        Page 87
        Page 88
        Page 89
        Page 90
        Page 91
        Page 92
        Page 93
        Page 94
    Chapter IX
        Page 95
        Page 96
        Page 97
        Page 98
        Page 99
        Page 100
        Page 101
        Page 102
        Page 103
    Chapter X
        Page 104
        Page 105
        Page 106
        Page 107
        Page 108
        Page 109
        Page 110
    Chapter XI
        Page 111
        Page 112
        Page 113
        Page 114
        Page 115
        Page 116
        Page 117
        Page 118
    Chapter XII
        Page 119
        Page 120
        Page 121
        Page 122
        Page 123
        Page 124
        Page 125
        Page 126
        Page 127
    Back Cover
        Cover 3
        Cover 4
Full Text

The Baldwum L library
fI._p lB


^ S9CA^^j~





Lily's Home. By Mrs. SALE BARKER.
Minnie's Legacy.
Neighbourly Love.'
The Little Oxleys.
Stories for Weekdays and Sundays.
Story of a Dog. By Mrs. PERRING.
Story of a Cat. By Mrs. PERRING.
Story of a Mouse. By Mrs. PERRING.




The History of Little

Davy's New Hat




THE following little work was written
by Robert Bloomfield, author of the
"Farmer's Boy," Rural Tales," etc.;
born 1766, died 1823. It was first
published in 1815, by Darton, Harvey
and Darton, of Gracechurch Street,
and sold for Two Shillings, appearing
as small post 8vo. of sixty-three pages,
with four illustrations; two other
editions were afterwards published, in

vi Preface.

the years 1817 and 1824; but now a
copy of the work is rarely, if ever, to
be met with. The original manuscript
in the author's autograph is preserved
in the library of the British Museum,
but not the printed book, of which I
never saw but three copies, all belong-
ing to my family. Because it cannot
now be obtained, .and I esteem it an
excellent story, not only deserving
attention as being the production of
him who wrote the "Farmer's Boy,"
but for its own real merit, I republish
it. The mighty changes that have
taken place since this story was written
slightly affect its descriptions only, and

Preface. vii

render the book not less pleasing and
instructive than on the first day of its
publication, the simplest human feel-
ings and sympathies, of which it ex-
clusively treats, remaining the same
for all time.

February 12, 1877.


TRIFLING as the subject may appear
to the young and the thoughtless, when
a new book for children is introduced
into a family it becomes the indispen-
sable duty of parents, or their super-
intendents of the nursery, to know its
contents. If it inculcates false princi-
ples, the pride of wealth, or, more
particularly, superstition, let them, for
mercy's sake, use it for lighting the

x To Parents.

fire- This notion I imbibed forty
years ago from my mother, a village
schoolmistress, and I have never found
cause to alter this early opinion. It
was then I was taught to prize Goody
Two Shoes" for its excellent hits at
superstition; and to read the History
of Jack the Giant Killer" for the
purpose of remarking its abominable
In the year I80o I wrote the fol-
lowing little story, for the purpose of
trying its effects on the minds of my
own children. .I sunk the language
to the level of their understandings,
and succeeded beyond my expectation.

To Parents. xi

After lying idle on my shelf for four-
teen years, Davy" makes his appear-
ance, to take his chance of pleasing
more extensively. Perhaps the cha-
racters are too good-too perfect-for
what we unfortunately see in real life;
but that their poverty is not beyond
truth, I am certain. The story is best
adapted for village children; and will
be most approved by those who pro-
mote good nature and charity.


April, I815.


THE following little story has already
been circulated very considerably, and
I have to assure the reader that when
it was first published, I had not the
least idea of its being noticed by the
regular reviewers; for I live in a
sequestered corner, not very accessible
to literary intelligence. I find, how-
ever, that they have condescended to

xiv Preface to the

notice it, and the only fault which I
have seen pointed out by them, I have
endeavoured to correct in this second
edition, and feel a pleasure in doing it.
In the first instance, I felt a reluct-
ance to subscribing my name as its
author; but have since discovered that
such reluctance arose from a feeling of
vanity, or some other feeling quite as
unjustifiable. I really believe that
reviewers are as well employed in
overlooking and censuring these
minor efforts of literature, intended
for a rising generation, as in some of
their more abstruse and metaphysical
disquisitions, which the readers of this

Second Edition. xv

story, for instance, will not be able to
understand for these thirty years to
The longer I live, the more I am
convinced of the importance of child-
ren's books. The feeling seems to be
universal; and I never talk with a
man or woman of fifty years of age,
without hearing that what they read
in their infancy was very inferior to
the juvenile publications of later days.
Reader, ask yourself if this is not the
case, and remember the exalted names
of my betters, who have helped to
turn, or perhaps have entirely turned,
the scale in favour of your children and

xvi Preface to the Second Edition.

mine; and then, when you recollect
the names of Dr. Watts, Mrs. Bar-
bauld, Mrs. Trimmer, Mrs. Wakefield,
Miss Edgeworth, and many others,
allow me, without any fear of shame,
to sign myself, respectfully,


February 27, 1817.




IT was very dark-not a star to be
seen; the wind blew cold, and large
drops were falling from the trees, when
Miss Wideland, returning home in her
chaise through a dark lane, met a
little boy alone. The young lady was
alarmed, and cried:
"Who are you ? What are you ?"

18 The History of

A voice answered:
"It is Davy, ma'am."
"Why, you -quite frightened me,
Davy. What can you be doing here
at this time of night ?"
"I am but just come out,'" saic
Davy, "to meet my mother, who is
coming home from the shop."
At that moment, looking closely at
the boy, the lady, with much concern,
said :
"Why, bless the child, you have no
hat on!"
"No, ma'am," answered he; "but
my father says he will buy me a hat

Little Davy's New Hat. i9

"Poor boy!" said she very ten-
derly, and stooping down gave him
sixpence, though she could hardly see
his little white face in the dark. Then
bidding him stand out of the way of
the wheels, she drove home slowly,
thinking about Davy all the way.
Now, though the boy did not ride
home, he went as speedily and as lightly
as if he had, and opening the door in
great haste, did not stop to shut it (a
fault which little boys are often guilty
of), but ran to his father, who was
sitting by the fire, and holding out his
hand said, very loud, and with his
eyes wide open with joy:

2o The History of

"Father, I have got sixpence I"
This stopped his father from scold-
ing him, as he deserved, for leaving
the door open on a cold night. At
that moment his mother returning,
said :
"What in the name of patience,
are you so hot as to sit with the door
open ? This is your doings, Davy."
But here again he succeeded in stop-
ping any further remarks on that sub-
ject, by saying:
Mother, Miss Wideland has given
me sixpence !"
Has she, indeed ?" said the good
woman; she was always a kind girl

Little Davy's New Hat. 21

She has given your poor brother Will
many a sixpence, before he went for
a soldier. She will never be the
poorer for it, I know."
I don't know about that," said
Davy; "but I know that I have got
it." And here he was just unbutton-
ing his pocket, when his father put
some further questions to him, saying:
How came the young lady to see
you, Davy? And what did she say
to you ?"
"Why," said he, I was in the
lane, and I believe she gave it to me
because I had no hat, for she said
'Poor boy '"

3a The History of

Ay, poor boy indeed," said his
father and mother, both at the same
time; but we will buy you one soon,
"( I told her so, father," said Davy;
"and this sixpence, you know, will
help to buy it."
Davy's father and mother were
very poor; and so was old Master
Woodly, his grandfather, who lived
with them, and whose hair was as
white as snow. They got their living
by making birchbrooms; but his
grandfather was very feeble, and his
father seldom well long together, so
that they could hardly get bread, with

Little Davy's New Hat. 23

all they could do. His mother wore
a petticoat that was mended with
pieces which did not exactly match;
but she did not mind that so long as
it was whole. One end of the house
they lived in had fallen down, for
want of timely repairs; but they had
plenty of room for their family. The
ground rose so high behind the house
that the upper end of the garden was
nearly as high as the chimney, and
the grandfather, who was a sensible
old man, and remembered a great
deal, was fond of sitting there in an
old wicker chair which he had made
in his youth. The sun would shine

24 The History of

pleasantly here, even on a winter's
day, and the hill kept the cold off
behind. Here Davy would set off
his hoop, and it would run, of itself,
down to the back-door, and some-
times through the house into the

Little Davy's New Hat. 25


Miss WIDELAND'S father was a farmer,
and kept a great many horses and
cows, and two flocks of sheep; and
all the stock of hay and corn, the pro-
duce of five hundred acres of land,
was his own.
Both Mr. and Mrs. Wideland were
esteemed good-natured and condes-
cending to every one, but all the poor
neighbours said that Miss Wideland
was the best in the family; for she

26 The History of

would often beg of her mother for the
skimmed milk for them, when the
dairy-maid dare not part with it,
because it was wanted for the
Whether it is quite right to give
milk to pigs, while poor children go
without, I will not say; but it hap-
pened one morning that Davy got
up earlier than usual, and being very
hungry, he longed for a dish of milk
for breakfast, for he was very fond
of it.
His mother told him that she had
been herself, the evening before, to
Mr. Wideland's, but could get'none,

Little Davy's New Hat. 27

the dairy-maid saying she must not
sell it.
I wanted a little milk as well as
you, Davy, to make a pudding, for I
am not very well; but I must make
shift without it."
"Shall I go and try ?" said Davy.
"You go, child! What good can
you do by going ?"
"Why," said Davy, "I think if I
can see Miss Wideland, mother, I can
get some milk."
He set off directly, with a pitcher
that would hold about three pints, and
began to whistle as soon as he got out
at the door.

28 The History of

The pasture-ground he had to cross
was covered with shining dew-drops,
and he found that his feet, brushing in
the grass, left a mark or track behind
him; he accordingly tried to walk
exactly straight to a tree at the bottom
of the field, and thereby make a kind
of furrow, as he had seen the men do
at plough. He had pleased himself
with walking very straight a long way
when a large turkey-cock, with his red
head and a loud gobbling noise, at-
tacked him and drove him out of his
Davy had nothing to defend himself
with but his pitcher. He was half

Little Davy's New Hat. 29

angry and half frightened, and would
certainly have thrown his hat at him
if he had had one; but he was forced
to run away as fast as he could., As
he crossed the farm-yard to the dairy,
he had to go just by the parlour win-
dow, where Miss Wideland used to
sit, and she happened to be there that
morning. When Davy saw that she
looked at him, he made a handsome
bow-one of his best. His face had
been washed, and his flaxen hair
combed, before he set out. He was
a very pretty boy, and, what is much
better, he was, upon the whole, a very
good boy.

30 The History of

"Well, Davy, what do you want ?"
said she, though she could pretty
well guess his errand by his
Davy only held up his pitcher, and
answered, "Ma'am, I have had no
He was ordered into the dairy,
where he not only had his pitcher
filled, but the maid gave him a hand-
ful of cheese-curd to eat as he went
The magpie which was kept at Mr.
Wideland's could talk almost any-
thing, and would hop after strangers,
and sometimes peck their heels; es-

Little Davy's New Hat. 31

pecially those of girls who had holes
in their stockings.
Davy was delighted to hear the
bird ask him, "What's o'clock ?" and
then say, "Quick, quick, Jack."
To enjoy this prating bird's com-
pany the better, Davy walked back-
wards down the yard, and by so
doing struck his pitcher against a
post. A blow a little harder would
have broken it; but idle talk, like
that of the magpie, will sometimes
put wise people off their guard. How-
ever, when he had got into the field
again he thought himself safe, for the
turkey-cock was gone. But here; as

32 The History of

he strolled along under the hedge, he
saw a long straight bough of elder,
which would make very excellent
whistles. Though he wanted his
breakfast, he could not help stopping
to cut this tempting bough, which he
could as well have obtained at any
other time.
Most little country boys carry a
knife in their pockets, though they are
seldom very sharp. He set down his
pitcher in the grass, and had but just
cut the bough down when he saw
Mr. Wideland's sow and pigs come
trotting down towards him. They
soon surrounded his pitcher, and he

Little Davy's New Hat. 33

thought it was all over with his break-
fast. He halloed to them, and made
great haste to get down; but in his
haste let go his hold, and fell headlong
into the ditch. The rustling he made
in his fall frightened the pigs, and
saved his milk.
He went home, thinking about
these misfortunes, for boys and girls, as
well as men and women, know when
they have done wrong. It was wrong
to loiter and make whistles when he
should have carried his milk home;
and Davy's heart told him that it
would have served him right to have
lost his breakfast. However, he car-

34 The History of

ried home his milk and his elder
His mother was highly pleased to
see the pitcher full; but Davy was
ashamed to relate all that had hap-
pened, and therefore only mentioned
the turkey-cock and the cheesecurd.

Little Davy's New Hat. 35


AFTER breakfast, Davy reminded his
mother that now he had put the six-
pence Miss Wideland had given him
into his box on the top of the cup.
board, it made just seventeen-pence-,
halfpenny; for he had been saving
his money a long time to buy a hat.
His mother heard him with a mixture
of pleasure and pain; for she knew,
though Davy did not, that his box
was empty. She had been forced to

36 The History of

borrow Davy's money to make up
enough to buy a loaf, for Mr. Snap-
groat at the shop had trusted her a
few shillings during the winter, and
would not trust any more. But it
being now the middle of March, she
had strong hopes of paying him, and
of doing better, when the weather
grew fine. She did not much like
the baker's bread from the shop, but
though she had an oven in her own
house it was not always that she could
get flour; and it was because all their
money went for bread and flour that
the boy went bareheaded.
Old Master Woodly had been round

Little Davy's Vew Hat. 37

the home-close for a walk, and had
brought home a whole handful of
primroses. The sight of these flowers
always gives poor people a hint that
winter is going, and that the hardships
they endure will be less and less every
day; and so it proved with this family.
Davy had been to school but little,
but his grandfather used to teach him
to read and spell. They were sitting
together on the bench at the door,
and Davy was trying to spell three
syllables when they heard. the gate
open at the top of the hill, and saw
Miss Wideland gently walking down
to the door.

38 The History of

As she approached the grandfather
bowed, rising from his seat; but Davy
bowed as soon as he saw her, and two
or three times afterwards.
Just as Miss Wideland came to the
door, Davy's sister Jane, about three
years old, fell over the threshold, and
her mother, in trying to save her, let
fall a favourite tea-pot, which she had
used many years. This was a bad
misfortune on that account, but Mrs.
Woodly was not one of those who are
in the habit of making troubles out of
The child's forehead was bruised,
but her brother, who loved her dearly,

Little Davy's New Hat. 39

had been used to nursing her, and
could always quiet her sooner than her
When all was hushed again, Miss
Wideland came in and sat down; and
old Master Woodly, following her, also
sat down in his elbow-chair, and was
so pleased to see the good young lady
call upon them that he almost forgot
the rheumatism in his shoulder, which
had troubled him all the morning.
They thanked her over and over
again for the kindness she had shown
to them and others in the parish; but
she turned the discourse, and now cast
a look of pity on poor Mrs. Woodly,

40 The History of
who was turning and matching the
fragments of her broken tea-pot.
"Mrs. Woodly," said she, smiling,
"let Davy go to the shop and choose
another, and say that I will pay
for it."
He went instantly, and said he
would, bring a blue one. When the
boy was gone, they all began to talk
very freely, and Miss Wideland in-
quired of Mrs. Woodly when she
heard from her son Will.
This question made the poor woman
low-spirited, for she had not heard of
him for a whole twelvemonth.
"But," said she, "I live in hopes

Little Davy's New Hat. 41

that I shall see him again; only my
husband says that Jamaica is a sad,
unhealthy place."
Here old Master Woodly said that
he "had a brother once, a fine young
man, who died there; but a great
many came home, and why may not
my grandson ? If we could but have
a peace, I should reckon upon seeing
him again, old as I am."
"Ay," said Mrs. Woodly, as she
took a pinch of snuff, "but Heaven
only knows when we shall have that
blessing. I am sure the flour has been
so dear, and they say it is because of
the war, that I don't know how we

42 The History of

can live another half year as we have
done this. I do so long for a bit of
meat, when the butcher rides by with
his basket! To be sure, my husband
may be better now, as the spring
comes on; and I always find a comfort
in hoping, though my hopes are often
"And are you not able to buy
meat ?" said Miss Wideland. "I
hope you have had some allowance
these hard times."
"Why,' I will tell you how it is,
young lady," said the old man (for Mrs.
Woodly was obliged to go after Jane);
"the rich part of our parish call our

Little Davy's New Hat. 43

broom-making a trade, and I believe
we have had less help on that account.
We tried to persuade our son to go
and plead our cause to the farmers,
but I verily believe he would starve
first, though he never was much richer
than he is now, which is not exactly the
case with me. I once held a farm-"
While the old man was thus speak-
ing, in came Davy with the tea-pot.
Here's a nice blue one, mother I
Mr. Snapgroat asked me if I broke the
old one; but I told him you broke
it yourself."
They now made Davy be silent,
and the old man went on with his

44 The History of

story thus: "I was saying, miss, that
I once held a farm; I did not live in
this house, it is true; but the old man
is now living in a workhouse, about
ten miles off, who lived as a farmer in
this very house. You see, miss, that
it has been much larger than it is
"Ay," said Davy, "and my mother
says that the room where I sleep was
the cheese-chamber."
Hold your tongue, boy," said his
mother and grandfather; "it is very
rude to talk while other people are
Miss Wideland was much affected

Little Davy's New Hat. 45

at what she heard, and, indeed,
did not like to hear of troubles which
she could not prevent; but promised
that if they still found themselves dis-
tressed, and would tell her so, she
would state their case to her father
and the other farmers, and do all she
could to help them.
Mrs. Woodly wiped her eyes, and
Davy looked as if he was going to
make some remark about it; but at
that moment he saw something stir in
a bundle which the young lady held on
her lap, and, without taking his eyes
off, went close to see what it was.

46 The History of


"WHAT can it be alive in this hand-
kerchief?" thought Davy; "I should
like to know."
Miss Wideland saw that he had
discovered something living, and could
not help smiling to see him peeping
round her bundle so closely. She told
him to have patience, and she would
show him what it was. "But," said
she, "if your mother is so poor that
she cannot afford to buy meat for her-

Little Davy's New Hat. 47

self, I doubt she can never afford to
keep this poor little animal, which was
just going to be drowned. I could not
bear to see it go to the pond, so I
brought it to your mother, to see if
you could keep it amongst you. It is
but a little creature; it will not eat
She then untied the bundle, and set
down a very handsome little puppy,
and then they all looked at it with
pity. And when it ran round the cat
and barked, Davy was even more de-
lighted than he had been with the
"0 mother, we will keep it. I

48 The History of

know my father will like it; I will go
and fetch him."
Away he ran to the shed, where his
father was making brooms, and per-
suaded him to come in and see the
puppy. His father, finding that Miss
Wideland was there, came with him;
but more to see the young lady who
had been Davy's friend, than to see
the little dog.
They all thus met together, and
Mrs. Woodly and her husband both
thought what pleasure they should
have found in bringing out a mug of
their own ale; but malt had been too
dear for that for many months past,

Little Davy's New Hat. 49

so they said nothing about it, but
agreed with Davy that it was a very
pretty dog. But when he talked of
keeping it, his mother whispered to
him that they had nothing to feed it
with, and could not think of starving
it, for that would be worse than
Davy rubbed his head, and his eyes
shone as he turned them from his
mother, and without speaking another
word, he went to -Miss Wideland's
knee, and looking up, said, Ma'am,
will not you let me have some milk
for the puppy every morning, if I
come for it ?"

50 The History of

"Yes, Davy," said she, "that I
will; and some for your mother too,
if she will keep the dog."
"I will come, then," said he briskly:
"I wonder if it will grow big enough to
draw my turnip-cart, as Jack Green-
way's dog does. And oh, mother,
what shall its name be ?"
"Why," said she, I think it ought
to be Pity, for pity saved his life."
So they all agreed to call him so, and
to keep him for pity's sake.
All this time they minded nothing
but the boy and the puppy; but it was
now time for Miss Wideland to tell
what she called for, besides bringing

Little Davy's New Hat. 51

the dog. She was going to a village
about seven miles off, to visit her aunt;
and she meant to go in her little chaise,
and there being many gates to open,
she wanted Davy to go with her, which
would be a charming ride, she pro-
mising to take care of him, if his parents
would let him go. They all said that
he would be a very little footman;
but they could not refuse her, for she
had been very good to them. She
was to go the next morning, and
when she left them they promised
that the boy should be ready. This
was a longer journey than he had
ever taken, and he kept thinking to

52 The History of

himself what he should see--what
shapes the trees, the fields, and bridges
would be, which they might have -to
pass. In short, he dreamed all night
of riding.
When the morning came he made
himself as smart as he could, and was
setting off, when he put his hand to
his head It was very odd that when
it was agreed that he should go, nei-
ther Davy, nor his father nor mother,
had thought of one thing, which was,
that he had no hat to go in! They
were all vexed, and could hardly help
laughing at their own folly and forget-
fulness. But Davy was not in a

Little Davy's New Hat. 53

laughing mood, when his father de-
clared that he could not go, and said
at the same time: "You know, my
boy, that I wish you had a hat; but
wishing will not buy one, and I am
sure I have no money."
Davy cried heartily. Perhaps there
is not a little boy in England who
would not have cried, had he been in
his place. But in the midst of his
tears, he begged that they would let
him go to Miss Wideland: Perhaps,"
said he, "she will take me without a
His father said that, at any rate, he
must go to Mr. Wideland's, if it was

54 The History of

only to say that he could not go the
"So I will then," answered Davy,
and ran out of the house, wiping his
eyes with the skirt of his coat. He
went down the pasture-ground as
quick as he had ever done in his life,
and found the chaise at the door.
The young lady was just going to
step up, with the reins in her hand,
saying, "Come, Davy, get up." But
at that moment, she too bethought
herself that the boy could not go
seven miles from home bareheaded.
What was to be done ? All the old
hats in the house were a great deal

Little Davy's N.ew Hat. 55

too big for him; even Abel Cloutham,
the farmer's boy, had a head as big
again as Davy's. But Abel's head
had grown a great deal, and he had
upstairs an old cap, which he had
made long ago out of a cat's skin,
with the hair on. He was ordered to
bring it down; and when they had
dusted it and knocked out the ear-
wigs, it was found to be just the size,
and would make a very good shift,
So up he got, and sat close by Miss
Wideland, and the horse being very
willing to go, they set off in good
spirits. And well they might, for the
trees began to show their new leaves,

56 The History of

the air was mild, the sun shone de-
lightfully, and in half an hour Davy
found himself on strange ground, and
began to ask a great many questions.

Little Davy's New Hat. 57


As Davy was not at all afraid to
speak what he thought to his friend
Miss Wideland, he made many re-
marks on what -he passed by, and
what he saw at a distance. They
had to ride over a hill where they
could see a long way round, and
where Davy found that the world
was much larger than he had
thought it was. Amongst other
things, they talked on the subject of

58 The History of

hats; and Miss Wideland asked him
how long he had been without one,
and how it happened?
Why," said he, "I had a hat last
summer. It was a pretty good one:
it had but one hole in it, and I could
have mended that. But Jack Green-
way and I went to gather nuts, a long
while ago, before the snow came, you
know. We were got into the middle
of the wood, and found a great many.
We soon gathered our hats full, and
we wanted to fill our pockets besides.
So we set down our hats under a tree,
and went from them to gather more,
until I said it was time to go home;

Little Davy's New Hat. 59

but Jack would not go. We stayed
a little longer, and then it was almost
night; and we went to look for our
hats, but could not find the tree where
we had left them. We both cried a
little, because it grew darker, but
were forced to make haste home
without them. But we talked a great
deal about it as we went along, and I
believe Jack's father beat him for it;
but he soon got another hat, for his
father keeps the 'Dragon,' and gets
more money than mine."
"So you lost your nuts as well as
your hat, Davy," said Miss Wide-

60 The History of

"Yes, ma'am," said he; "and I
should not have had any supper, I
believe, if my grandfather had not
taken my part. My father said it
was a sad affair, and that if I could
not find it the next day I must go
without a hat, and so I have ever
since; for Jack and I went in the
morning and searched about the
wood, but could not find the tree
where we had left them. Perhaps
some other boys had found them, and
some of them might want a hat as
much as I have done since: and so
my grandfather says."
"And don't your father some-

Litle Davy's New Hat. 61

times take a stick to your back,
Davy ?"
No, ma'am, only when he is very
angry he talks to me, and tells me
that I don't love him, and will not
hear me when I tell him that I do;
and I am sure I do, for all that."
While he was thus telling his story,
they rode over a fine bridge, with a
broad clear water beneath it, before a
gentleman's house. There happened
to be a pleasure-boat with a sail
spread, carrying a party of ladies, and
a gentleman playing a clarionet. This
was all new to Davy. He had never
thought of such a thing as that the

62 The History of

wind would blow people along upon
the water. Miss Wideland told him
that a ship on the great sea was moved
in the same manner, and that some of
them would carry a hundred great
guns, and a thousand men.
"And shall we see any such as we
go along?" said Davy. It was a
simple question; but the first notion
we get of things is very often simple
The chaise now rattled along a
turnpike-road, and they met a fine
regiment of horse soldiers. This was
a noble sight, and Davy asked if his
brother Will wore a coat like theirs.

Little Davy's New Hat. 63

"No," said Miss Wideland, "your
brother is a foot soldier, and is gone
abroad in such a ship as we were
talking about."
Davy now looked across the coun-
try till his eyes ached; but Miss
Wideland looked at nothing but a
horseman coming down the hill before
them; and though her footman pointed
here and there at flocks, trees, and
churches within sight, she took no
notice of him or of what he said.
The gentleman soon met them. He
was mounted on a beautiful bay horse,
and no sooner came to the side of the
chaise than he turned about and rode

64 The History of

back with them; but hinted that per-
haps Davy could ride his horse, and
himself ride with the lady. But Miks
Wideland would by no means trust
Davy on so spirited an animal, for she
had promised his parents to take care
of him.
This gentleman's name was Stan-
more. He often leaned over the side
of the chaise, and said he was very
glad to meet her. He was a young
man, and seemed as full of spirits as
his horse.
They rode very gently along for
the last mile, and at length came to
Mrs. Meadowly's, which was the end

Little Davy's New Hat. 65

of their journey, for this good lady
was aunt to Miss Wideland.
Mr. Stanmore was off his horse,
and had lifted the young lady from
the chaise, before any servant could
come to wait on them.
At last came Mrs. Meadowly's man,
old John Harrows, who took charge
of the horses and carriage; and Mr.
Stanmore led the young lady into the
parlour, while Davy was sent into the
kitchen to have some cake and warm

, ,- -

66 The History of


THE maid's name was Betty. She
was a kind-hearted, good servant, but
liked to know as much as she could
about every body. She was quite
pleased with Davy's little fair face,
and gave him a stool by the fire, and
then asked him a great many questions;
as, how many brothers and sisters he
had ? how old he was ? and then asked
all she could about who that gentleman
was who came riding with them ?

Little Davy's New Hat. 67

Davy said that they met that gen-
tleman on the road.
"And did you hear his name?"
said Betty.
"Yes," answered Davy; "Miss
Wideland called him Mr. Stanmore."
"I thought so," said she; "I have
heard something of him: I shall see
him when I carry the dinner in. And
did the lady speak kindly to him?
What did she say ?"
"I did not hear all that she said,"
answered Davy, "but she looked
They were talking thus, when in
came a dog of a monstrous size, and

68 The History of

walked towards Davy, who got up
from his seat; for, as he sat, the dog's
head was as high as his own, and he
was sadly afraid of him.
But Betty halloed: "Get out, you
great beast, and take that with you!"
throwing down a large bone which
had not been picked very clean.
It was so large that Davy at first
verily believed it to be a joint of
meat; and when the dog was gone,
said that his mother would have been
glad of it. He told her that he had a
dog at home, but it was not so big as
that, and he hoped it never would be;
but if he could get a bit of meat off

Little Davy's New Hat. 69

that great dog's dinner, he would carry
it home for Pity. Betty gave him a
bit directly, which he carefully put in
his pocket.
There was time enough before
dinner for Davy to take a walk, and
Betty called the servant-boy to go
with him, and show him about; but he
no sooner came in than he stared like
a fool.
This Jack Bramble was an ill-
mannerly and an ill-natured boy,
and was laughing at Davy's cap. He
did not much mind Betty, or any
one else, but called Davy Cat's Head,
and some other names, for which

70 The History of

Betty threw the rolling-pin after him
with ill her might, which rattled on
his head and shoulders as he shut the
door, saying, "that it was a shame for
a great boy like him to insult a little
one, and a stranger too."
Betty was very right, for of all ill-
manners insulting a stranger is the
Davy, therefore, took a walk by
himself, but was careful not to go out
of sight of the house. When he
returned he said he had been talking
with two boys, who were keeping
sheep upon the hill, and they had
been disputing about the sheep, for

Little Davy's New Hat. 71

they were not like Mr. Wideland's
sheep: these had white faces and no
horns. The two boys would have it
that their sheep were the best in
England; but he did not believe they
were better than Mr. Wideland's. It
was now dinner-time, and Betty could
not stop to hear all he had to say.
When dinner was done in the
parlour, Davy had his in the kitchen
with Betty, and John Harrows, and
Jack Bramble. The latter again began
to laugh at Davy's cap, which lay on
the dresser; but he remembered the
rolling-pin, and was soon quiet.
After they had dined, Betty, as she

72 The History of

did her work, amused herself by
singing a song which Davy had never
heard before. It was quite new, she
said, for she bought the ballad at the
last fair; and when she learned from
Davy that his brother Will was a
soldier, and that his mother sung
sometimes when his father was well,
she gave him the ballad, and charged
him to give it to his mother.
Betty still kept singing and working,
when in came Miss Wideland and
took Davy by the hand and led hin
into the parlour to her aunt and Mr.
"This is my footman," said she,

Lttlle Davy's New Hat. 73

"and I assure you he has more sense
than many a clumsy boy of twice his
Davy had to answer many questions,
and after drinking half a glass of wine,
had to give an account of what he had
seen by the way, which he did, to the
great amusement of the party. But
he was not so happy as he would have
been at home, and was glad to hear
Miss Wideland say it was time to get
the chaise ready, as she wished to be
home by daylight.
Mr. Stanmore gave him sixpence as
he came out of the parlour, and Mrs.
Meadowly gave him another, and a

74 The History of
cheesecake to carry home for Jane;
and when he went into the kitchen for
his cap, Betty filled his coat-pockets
with apples, and again charged him to
give the ballad to his mother.
With a heart as light as a feather,
he took his seat in the chaise; and
when Miss Wideland could get away
from Mr. Stanmore, they drove off
towards home.
The young lady returned by a dif-
ferent road to that by which they
came; for they now passed through a
large park, over the smooth grass for
three miles together, where was many
a beautiful clump of fir-trees, and many

Little Davy's New Hat. 75

a herd of deer. As the chaise ap-
proached the deer, they ran into a
cluster with such fantastic skips, that
Davy observed they looked as if they
were jumping for a wager.
And now, indeed, the boy talked
more and faster than he had done
during his morning's ride; and having
learned part of the tune of Betty's
song, he was occasionally singing half
the way home.
Miss Wideland asked him if Betty
had given him anything to drink in
the kitchen.
"Yes," said he, very innocently, I
had some small beer twice."

76 The History of

"Then you are not tipsy ?" said she.
"No, ma'am; only I am so very
glad, that I can hardly help crying."
They arrived at Mr. Wideland's
about sunset, and Davy went merrily
up the pasture ground to tell his good
fortune and his adventures to his

Little Davy's New Hat. 77


"HERE I am, mother," said Davy,
giving Jane her present, and placing
his apples on the table; "and I have
got something besides !"
Here he pulled out his money, when
they all said, "We see you are here,
but what have you got upon your
head? You have not been in that
cap, have you ?"
"Yes, I have; and it is my own,

78 The History of

They were highly delighted with
the account he gave of his journey,
and his mother made him tell all about
Mr. Stanmore, for she knew nothing
of him; but she found from Davy
that Miss Wideland talked more to
him than she did to her aunt; and
asking him further, as to whether he
had ever seen this Mr. Stanmore at
Mr. Wideland's, Davy said No," but
he thought Miss Wideland must have
seen him before, because, as he turned
back into the parlour to make a bow,
he saw their two faces close together,
and Mr. Stanmore said "Get along,
you rogue."

Little Davy's New Hat. 79

Mrs. Woodly could not help smiling,
but Davy went on saying: I wonder
if my grandfather was ever further
from home than I have been to-day ?"
In this manner did the poor boy
express his pleasure, and it did their
hearts good to find that he loved those
who were kind to them as well as to
In the midst of his joy, the dog crept
from under the stool in the corner, and
put his feet upon his knee; when he
directly bethought himself of the meat
which Betty had given him, and Pity
had a good supper. Old Master
Woodly made the smoke fly faster

8o The History of

than usual from his pipe, and said:
" That's a good boy; your father was
just such another, only he was so
stubborn with it."
They now handled and looked at
the cap, and all agreed that it would
do well for a time, and that he must
take care of it.
Davy answered, "I like it well
enough; but you know, father, it is
not a new hat."
Th is was very true, and his fathe
assured him that he should have a hat
at Brookside fair, where he should
go with a load of brooms, in th
month of May. This was a long

Little Davy's New Hat. 8

time to look for; and besides, his
mother said, with a deep sigh, she
was afraid that Mr. Snapgroat would
have most of that money for the
bread they had been eating during
the winter. However, she was not
willing to vex Davy, and so said no
more about it, but thought much of
this young Mr. Stanmore, whom the
boy had been speaking of; for. she
saw plainly of what amazing conse-
quence it is to the poor to have their
rich neighbours kind and tender-
Davy now sat considering to him-
self, as if he had not done all that he

82 The History of

was bidden to do; then, fumbling in
all his pockets,. he pulled out the
ballad, and said: "0 mother, I have
got something for you. Betty gave
me this ballad, it is about a soldier;
and she can sing a great deal louder
than you. I wish you could hear her."
His mother took the ballad, and began
to read it aloud, but stopped in the
middle, because it was about "Soldier
Will," and throwing it on the floor
went hastily into the other room.
The old man took up the ballad, and
looked with utmost tenderness and
concern on Mrs. Woodly. But Davy
could not tell what to make of all this.

Little Davy's New Hat. 83

He had often seen his mother cry, as
he called it, when she was very much
pleased; but he could not see anything
in the song that could please her,
unless it was about his brother Will.
The old man then read the ballad to
them all, as follows; for Mrs. Woodly
soon returned, and Davy was very

My William Was gay as the birds in the morning,
And full of kind love was the glance of his
His manhood and strength gave my heart a sure
That he could defend me if danger was nigh.

He ranged through the meadows; the flower of
the valley,
And we had agreed to be wedded iext May;

84 The History of

But hard-hearted soldiers have robbed his poor
0 woe was the hour when they forced him

Can William find joy in the flames of a village?
In marching through blood in the terrible
strife ?
His joys were at home, and his strength meant
for tillage,
And I would have made him a true loyal wife.

0, when the wind roars, and the dark waves are
How maidens lament who have lovers at sea !
My love is a soldier through foreign lands strol-
And William may die far from England and

Then, who but rough soldiers will wait on him
dying ?
And who but his comrades will dig him a
grave ?

Little Davy's New HIat. 85

My heart is a coward-I cannot cease crying,
To think how forlorn is the death of the

But peace may return, all the bells may be ring-
When youths after glory no further shall roam;
I may weep with delight while my William is
And still be a bride, when my soldier comes

A little boy seldom cuts a more
"ridiculous figure than when he is tired

and sleepy, and still objects to going

to bed. Davy was not one of this sort.
He was almost asleep before he could

say his prayers, and his father being
unwell, went to bed at the same time;

but Mrs. Woodly had all her irons at


86 The History of

the fire, (for this was Saturday night),
and the old man sat up with her, and
read several chapters of the book of
Job, until both of them felt their
minds quite easy and composed, and
at a late hour retired to rest, offering
up as pure and earnest a prayer as
ever flowed from the patient or the

Little Davy's New Hat. 87


SUNDAY, a day of rest. A country
village is still and quiet at all times;
but on a Sunday morning it is still
more peaceable. You do not hear
the miller's cart go by, nor the plough-
man's horses with their clinking chains,
going to the field. Even the cow-
boys, though they drive the cows to
and from the meadows, know better
than to sing and halloo as they go.
All the people, though they do not

88 The History of

dress fine and gay, make themselves
as clean as they can. Soon after
breakfast the clerk of the parish goes
by, with the great church key in his
hand, and you soon hear the bells
begin to chime. This is not heard as
we hear it in great cities and towns,
along with many other bells and other
noises; but, as it comes only once a
week, the -6ound is always pleasing,
always new, and everybody knows
what it means.
The Woodlys' family lived at some
distance from the church; but they
heard the bells, and Davy and his
grandfather set off together, as they

Little Davy's New Hat. 89

always did. Mrs. Woodly was getting
ready, and, as she put on her cap, and
shook her clean apron, Mr. Woodly,
who was reading the Bible, said, in a
low voice, Good Heaven deliver me
from trouble."
He had stayed away from church
several Sundays before, and did not
mean to go now; but when his wife
asked him to go with her, he said: "I
can't find the pleasure I used to do in
going to church. I am sunk in po-
verty: I have no decent clothes.
These times have ruined me, and I
cannot be what I was; and though in
my heart I despise the sneer of a fool,

90 The History of

yet I know that the squire's game-
keeper, and some others, will let me
know that they have better coats than
mine, although perhaps not of their
own buying."
Mrs. Woodly was vexed to hear
him talk so, though she knew what
he said to be true, and still asked him
tenderly to go with her, saying it
would ease his mind; and at any rate
would be better than sitting at home.
But he still answered No."
"Well," said she, "I will go if it
were only to pray for Peace, and that
I may see my poor boy Will, before I

Little Davy's New Hat. 9

At the sound of peace and his son's
name, he rose instantly from his seat,
brushed his hat and shoes, and went
to church with his wife. He was one
of the psalm-singers, and there were
several neighbours glad to see him;
and he has often said since that he
never sung better, nor felt more plea-
sure than he did that day.
The sun shone in at every window,
and cheered the hearts of the people;
and there was no noise, except some
loud whispering amongst the boys,
partly about Davy's cap, which was
handed from one end of the bench
to the other; but the clerk soon

92 The History of

set them to rights, for it is very
rude and scandalous to talk at
The clergyman was an old gentle-
man who had known the family of the
Woodlys for many years, and as he
came through the church-yard, after
service was over, he nodded to Mr.
Woodly, and said he was very
glad to see him so well, and to see
him there, and asked after all his
Just at this instant Will Haynes, the
gamekeeper passed them, and gave a
Look of contempt and scorn on poor
Woodly and his wife, who thus saw

Little Davy's New Hat. 93

the wide difference between a wise
man and a fool.
The greatest news in the church-
yard to-day, was a whisper that Miss
Wideland was going to be married,
but nobody knew when.
A young woman whose name was
Lydia Downs, walked part of the
way home with Mrs. Woodly, and
asked very earnestly after her son
Will; for he had spent his Sundays,
and all his leisure hours with Lydia,
before he met with the party of re-
cruits that took him from home, and
persuaded him to be a soldier.
Lydia said that the squire, her

94 The History of

master, believed that war would be
over in six months, and, "Who
knows," said she, "but he may come
home again ?"

Little Davy's New Hat. 95


IT has already been said that Davy
was to have a new hat at the fair in
the month of May, and his father
worked hard for many weeks, until
the time was nearly come.
The load of brooms lay ready ri
the shed, but how was a cart to be
had ? Old John Headland was the
only little farmer now left in the village,
and he used a cart to do his work.
He had brought up a large family, but

96 The History of

they were all gone from him to seek
their own living; he was, therefore,
glad of the help of any of his neigh-
bours in harvest time to get his
corn in. A bargain was soon made,
founded on that excellent old truth,
that "one good turn deserves another,"
The little farmer lent his horses and
cart to the broom-maker for the day,
on condition that when his field of
barley should be ripe the broom-
maker would come and help him to
get it home.
Davy was to have gone with his
father to the fair, but who can foresee
what may happen to disappoint us

Little Davy's New Hat. 97

when we expect a pleasure? Old
Master Woodly about two days before
the time was taken ill, and was forced
to keep his bed; and how could Mrs.
Woodly look after and attend a sick
man and nurse Jane besides? So
Davy had to stay at home to wait on
his grandfather; and he did it cheer-
fully because he knew that had he
himself been ill his grandfather would
have waited on him.
His father drove away the cartload
of brooms, and Davy sat down by his
grandfather's bedside, and as he heard
his mother say something about going
to the doctor's for something to cure

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