ROSA TUarING RIK COUSIN'S PIOTURS.
1 M- L_
BY THE AUTHOR OF HOME LIFE."
THE RELIGIOUS TRACT SOCIETY;
SOLD AT THK DBPOSITORT, 56, PATMUNOTBR BOW,
AND 66, ST. PAUL'S CHUCHoTARD;
AND rB THR BOOKBILLSIU.
ONE morning, Rosa Evelyn was playing with
her doll in the parlour, where her mamma
was writing a letter. This letter was in-
tended to reach a dear friend, who was about
to travel for her health, before she should
leave home; consequently, Mrs. Evelyn did
not wish to be interrupted. But with the
little restless child beside her it was hardly
to be expected that she would enjoy ten
minutes' continued quietness. Presently,
Rosa came to have her doll's sash tied; and
when that was done for her, she wanted a
piece of crimson silk which had been ro-
mised her for a doll's shawl: and Mrs.
Evelyn was obliged to leave her writing-
desk, and look in her work-basket for the
"Now, Rosa dear," she said, as she gave
it to her, "sit down and play quietly by
yourself, because I am very busy."
6 ROSA's CHILDHOOD.
Rosa took the silk, and endeavoured to
adjust it as fashionably as she could on the
doll's shoulders; but as soon as this was
arranged to her satisfaction, the doll was
cast aside, and "mamma" was appealed to
for some fresh source of amusement.
"Mamma! I want my Noah's ark; will
you give me my Noah's ark, mamma?"
"It is up-stairs, my dear; you cannot
have it now, but I will fetch it for you pre-
sently. Here is your new picture-book,
look at that for a little while; there is a
pretty story in it just at the beginning."
But I do not want to read now," said
Rosa, pushing the book away from her; can
you not get me the Noah's ark, mamma ?"
Mrs. Evelyn saw that there would be no
peace until the plaything was brought, so
she laid down her pen once more, and fetched
the Noah's ark; and when her little girl, in
return, threw her arms round her neck and
kissed her, and called her "her own dear
mamma," the fond mother felt compensated
for her trouble.
Rosa then busied herself with arranging
the various figures in little rows and groups;
and although her loud exclamations of de-
light when some happened to fall, and her
sudden shakes of the table, were not very
agreeable accompaniments to her mamma's
letter-writing, yet Mrs. Evelyn bore them
patiently, because she did not wish to lessen
ROSA'S CHILDHOOD. 7
her child's mirth. In a few minutes the
Noah's ark had ceased to interest the little
girl, because her mamma could not play with
her and help her to set up the pieces. It is
true Rosa saw that her mamma was writing,
and did not wish to be disturbed; but the idea
of accommodating herself to another person's
employment never entered into her little
head: so she got down from her seat, and
began to fidget about Mrs. Evelyn's chair.
"Mamma! may I go and play in the
garden now ?" was the third interruption to
Mrs. Evelyn's letter.
No, my love, not this morning; the
ground is so damp, it would give you cold."
"But I want to see if my flowers have
come out. Do let me go, mamma; I will not
stay long," persisted the child.
Mrs. Evelyn had sufficient firmness to
repeat her refusal, for she was really afraid
to let the child go out, as her health was very
delicate. Rosa was not accustomed to be
opposed in her little plans; and as she sat
down slowly and sullenly on her little stool,
the tears filled her eyes, and she exclaimed
in a reproachful tone, I am sure the ground
would not hurt me; and I have got nothing
to play with here."
"Well, run and see whether nurse cannot
find something to amuse you: ask her to
get your paint-box, and then you can paint
a pretty picture for papa."
"No, I do not like nurse," said Rosa,
pettishly; "and I want to go and look at
Mrs. Evelyn could not bear to see a cloud
on the bright, smiling face of her little girl;
so she wiped away her tears, and said, "Do
not cry, dear Rosa; you shall walk in the
garden and see your flowers when it is fine,
but you will stay with mamma now, and have
some nice cake."
The sight of the cake quickly recalled
Rosa's good-humour; and as Mrs. Evelyn
now put away the unfinished letter, and
talked to her and amused her, she felt quite
Such scenes as these were of frequent
occurrence in Rosa's home. Every one must
give way to her, her slightest wish must be
immediately obeyed, or else tears and fits of
passion ensued. Rosa was an only child;
and her early years were marked by that
excessive and foolish indulgence which fond
but unwise parents frequently manifest. Her
wayward tempers were rather encouraged
than subdued. Mrs. Evelyn thought that
the way to make her little girl happy was to
gratify her inclinations as much as possible,
without any regard to the comfort of those
around her. She was not aware that there
is more real happiness experienced in trying
to please others than in always pleasing our-
selves. She loved her child tenderly, but
ROSA'S CHILDHOOD. 9
not wisely. It was not, therefore, strange
that the little Rosa was impatient and self-
willed, and accustomed to expect an imme-
diate compliance with all her fancies and
preferences; yet, from the natural amiability
of her disposition, the child was perhaps less
injured than one of a different temperament
would have been. Remarkable from her
earliest infancy for decision of character and
inflexibility of purpose, she nevertheless mani-
fested such sensibility of feeling and warmth
of affection, that a kind word, or a look of
love, generally calmed her angry passions.
But Rosa had scarcely attained her seventh
year when her education was suddenly and
entirely altered by the death of her mother.
Mrs. Evelyn was unwell for some weeks, but
it was not until a few hours before she died
that any immediate danger was apprehended.
How important it is to be always ready,
since we know not the day nor the hour
when the summons shall be sent for us!
Rosa loved her mother very mich; and
the readiness with which she left off her
noisy games when told they would make
mamma's head ache, and the soft tip-toe
step with which she would steal into the
parlour when Mrs. Evelyn was reclining on
the sofa, showed that there was a rich spring
of love in her heart, which, if guided by a
gentle hand, would form a pleasing and
10 ROsA'S CHILDHOOD.
The first Sunday that Mrs. Evelyn was
confined to the house, Rosa went to church
in the morning with her papa. It was a
lovely day in spring; the air was soft and
pleasant; and the pretty flowers peeped
above the ground. Rosa walked joyously
along with her father, and was so delighted
with the beautiful scenery around her, that
she almost forgot that her hand was not
clasped as usual within that of her mamma.
But when they entered the church, and the
sweet strains of music pealed from the organ,
and many voices united in the hymn of
praise, Rosa's lip quivered, and she burst
It was strange, because the child was
always so pleased with this part of the ser-
vice; and her own grave and persevering
attempts to join in the singing had often
excited a smile.
"What is the matter, my dear Rosa ?"
said Mr. Evelyn, soothingly, as he folded
her in his arms.
"I cannot sing to-day, papa," answered
the child, sadly, because mamma is so
But mamma will soon be better," said
Mr. Evelyn, in a cheerful tone, as he loosened
the strings of her bonnet and wiped the
tears from her eyes; and you shall go with
her to the sea-side next week, and run about
on the sands."
ROSA'S CHILDHOOD. 11
Rosa seemed comforted with this assur-
ance; and she thought how nice it would be
to walk with her mamma on the sands, and
see the beautiful ships and the pretty little
pleasure-boats, and gather shells and sea-
Poor little Rosa she was not aware how
vain were these bright hopes for the future.
Before one short week had passed away, her
mamma was in heaven. Her last words had
been respecting her little girl, and her last
glance had rested on the rosy cheeks of her
precious Rosa; for she closed her eyes, as if
in prayer, when the child was gently parted
from her, and she never opened them again.
Rosa felt her loss sadly. She could no
more hear her mother's soft, sweet voice, or
see her gentle smile. Her nurse was very
kind to her, and her papa indulged her
more than ever; but the little bereaved girl
missed that tender affection and care which
only a mother can bestow: and although in
a few weeks her childish grief partly wore
off, yet her touching inquiries after her
mamma often added to the distress of her
12 ROSA'8 CHILDHOOD.
MR. EVELYN was comparing in his own mind
the various plans which appeared likely to
promote the comfort of his dear child, when
a letter arrived from an old college friend of
his, named Dr. Wilson, offering to receive
the little Rosa into his family, and to treat
her as one of his own children. Dr. Wilson's
wife, who died within four years after her
marriage, was twin-sister to Mrs. Evelyn.
Her place was supplied-as far as a mother's
place could be supplied-by Miss Wilson,
or, as she was usually called, aunt Lucy.
Aunt Lucy had been a good and faithful friend
to Edith and Arthur Wilson; and when she
heard of Mr. Evelyn's sad bereavement, she
longed to extend her affectionate care to his
little Rosa. It was at her suggestion that the
letter had been written to him. Kid aunt
Lucy! hers was atenderand lovingheat, which
found its happiness in making others happy.
After some hesitation, Mr. Evelyn thank-
fully agreed to the kind proposal; for he knew
that his child would be safer and happier
beneath Dr. Wilson's roof than she could be
under his own protection, as he was engage
most of the day in business. It was a tri
to him to send Rosa so far away; but at the
ROSA'8 CHILDHOOD. 13
same time he felt grateful that so desirable a
home was provided for her, for he was fully
aware that her education and moral training
were now sadly neglected. The child was
less tractable and good-tempered than she
had been during Mrs. Evelyn's lifetime, for
the servants were not disposed to humour
her as her mother had done. It was not
likely that they would sacrifice their own
comfort to comply with her incessant and
often unreasonable demands: and when Mr.
Evelyn returned in the evening to their deso-
late home, he was frequently vexed to find
his little girl with a clouded brow and a
peevish temper; and he was wearied with
the complaints which he was obliged to hear
of her disobedience and perverseness. The
little motherless child was a trouble to her-
self, and to all around her. Her early habits
had unfitted her for the little trials and diffi-
culties which even children must meet with.
She had neither learned obedience nor self-
denial; Wpd without these there can be no real
peace. It is true kindness to a child, to lead
it by gentle and persuasive means in those
peaceful and pleasant paths which alone can
guide us to happiness and heaven.
Rosa was highly pleased with the novelty
and excitement of a visit to Dr. Wilson's. It
as such a treat to her to have a ride into
the country with papa; and she was delighted
with the idea of having two nice little play-
14 ROSAl' CHILDHOOD.
fellows. She had not been told that she was
going to live there for some time, for fear she
would not then be prevailed upon to accom-
pany her father: and therefore she did not
notice how sad Mr. Evelyn looked as they
sat at breakfast on the morning of their de-
parture; and she wondered why nurse cried
so when the chaise drove up to the door.
"Good bye, nurse, good bye!" she ex-
claimed, as Mr. Evelyn lifted her into the
chaise, and she sprang lightly into her seat,
waving the bunch of flowers which she held
in her hand. But nurse's smile was such a
mournful one as she repeated Rosa's farewell,
that Rosa said with some surprise to her
father, Papa! why is nurse so sorry ? Is
anything the matter?"
Mr. Evelyn hesitated. "Nurse is very
fond of you," he said, and she does not like
you to go away from her."
But she need not be so very sorry, papa,"
replied Rosa, "because I shall soon come back
again. I told her so."
Mr. Evelyn made no reply; he turned
away, and seemed to be looking at something
by the road-side: so Rosa supposed that he
had not heard her remark; and nurse's tears
were soon forgotten in the enjoyment of her
ride. The journey was a very pleasant one;
and Rosa's childish and rapturous expressions
of delight, at the new and pretty scenes
through which they passed, often called forth
nOsA's OaILDHOOD. 15
a smile from her papa, and chased away his
In a large old-fashioned prlour, the long
windows of which opened mto the garden,
sat a pleasant-looking lady and two children.
"Do you think they will come soon, aunt
Lucy ?" said a little girl, as she arranged for
at least the third time her favourite doll in its
"Yes, dear Edith," replied aunt Lucy,
smiling; "I do not think your patience will
be tried much longer."
Edith blushed. "Am I impatient, aunt?
But it is so delightful to think of having a
dear little sister, that I cannot help wishing
to see her."
"But Rosa is not your sister," said Arthur;
"she is our cousin."
"Yes, I know that," answered Edith;
"but she will be just like my sister, will she
"I hope she will, Edith. I am sure you will
love her very much, and be very kind to her;
and she will be a nice companion for you in
two or three years' time, when Arthur goes
"I wish she were a boy," said Arthur,
throwing down his slate and pencil; "and
then I should have somebody to play with."
"Oh, do not be selfish, Arthur," replied
Edith, amused with her brother's earnest-
ness; "surely you do not wish that I should
16 ROBA'S CHILDHOOD.
lose my new sister. You will have plenty of
boys to play with when you go to school,
and I shall have no playfellows then, except
Rosa; so I think it is quite fair she should
be a girl."
Arthur was going to reply, but at that
moment the sound of carriage-wheels an-
nounced the arrival of the travellers; and he
sprang from his seat, that he might catch the
first glimpse of his little cousin. Aunt Lucy
hastened to meet their visitors, and Dr. Wil-
son came out of his study for the same pur-
pose; while Edith and Arthur, who had been
so impatient for their coming, drew timidly
back, and waited anxiously, until Mr. Evelyn
and his little girl entered the parlour. Rosa
was tired with her journey, and she clung close
to her papa, for she did not like the sight of
so many strange faces.
Mr. Evelyn spoke very kindly to Edith
and Arthur; but Rosa hid her face on her
papa's shoulder, and would not look at her
new cousins. Presently, however, she ven-
tured to take a peep round; and when Edith
smiled pleasantly at her, she half-smiled in
return, and seemed disposed to be friendly.
"She is very pretty," whispered Edith to
I wish she would take off that large bon-
net," said Arthur; "I can hardly see her face."
Just then, to Arthur's great satisfaction,
the bonnet was removed, and Rosa's bright
eyes and rosy cheeks fully satisfied him.
Children soon get sociable with one another;
and as soon as tea was finished, Rosa slipped
down from her papa's knee, and accepted
Edith's invitation to come and see her pretty
doll. The vaxen baby was much admired;
and Rosa promised to let Edith and Arthur
look at all her toys and picture-books, when
the boxes were opened to-morrow. She sadly
wanted them unpacked then; but Mr. Evelyn
said it was too late, and Rosa submitted
patiently to the delay, because she did not
choose to cry or complain before her new
acquaintances. How easily we learn to wish
for the good opinion of others I How slowly
we endeavour to do a thing because it is
Rosa went to rest very early, because she
was wearied with her long ride. She lept
with Edith. The bed-room was a very plea-
sant one. Some pretty-looking portraits, in
thick gilt frames, hung over the old-fashioned
mantel-piece, and a few gaily-bound books
were ranged on a shelf over the drawers. The
large bow-window commanded a full view of
the garden behind the house; and as Rosa
peeped through the curtains, she thought
what a beautiful place it must be by day-
light. Rosa was soon fast asleep. Aunt
Lucy bent over her with a tearful eye, as she
lay in quiet and deep repose, and she breathed
an earnest prayer for her precious charge.
18 ROSA'8 CHILDHOOD.
In a few days, Rosa seemed quite at home
in her new abode, and she liked all her new
friends. She liked Edith because she was
ood-natured and obliging; she liked Arthur
cause he was merry and fond of play; she
liked aunt Lucy because she wasso kind and
gentle; and she liked Dr. Wilson because he
called her "his little pet," and always gave
her a lump of sugar in her tea when she sat
beside him. Still, after all, she loved her
apa the best, and had no idea of being parted
"Will you stay with me, and be my little
girl?" said Dr. Wilson, in a most persuasive
tone, one morning, when he had just dropped
one of the largest lumps of sugar into the cup.
"No, no!" exclaimed little Rosa, shaking
her little head very decidedly; "I must go
home with papa when he goes."
"But you can stay here a little longer with
Edith and Arthur," replied Mr. Evelyn,
smiling, "until I come again."
"No, I will not stop here without you,"
said Rosa, resolutely, as she laid down her
tea-spoon, and clung to her father; and her
heightened colour and tearful eyes showed
how difficult it would be to induce her to
separate from him. Her father therefore re-
solved to slip quietly away, that the pain of
parting might be avoided.
When Rosa found, one morning, that he
had left her, and that she had lost, not only
her mamma, but her papa, she sobbed so
violently that it was impossible to soothe her.
Poor little Rosa! resentment as well as sor-
row mingled with her fast-falling tears, for
she thought it was very cruel and unkind of
her papa to go away and leave her. She
would scarcely speak to any one during the
rest of the day, or listen to the words of
kindness and sympathy which were addressed
to her; and when night came, her grief burst
forth afresh, until at length she fell asleep,
quite worn out with the violence of her
20 ROsA'S CHILDHOOD.
RosA'S grief soon passed away, and she be-
came not only reconciled to her new home,
but very happy in it. Her disposition was
naturally affectionate, and her warm feelings
soon entwined themselves around her kind
For the first few days after her papa's
departure affairs went on pretty smoothly.
Everything was comparatively new to the
child, and she was amused and quiet. But old
habits soon regained their ascendency, and
fits of ill-humour and perverseness manifested
themselves, which required much skill and
patience from aunt Lucy. But aunt Lucy
was not discouraged by the waywardness of
the little girl. She knew that "love is power,"
and that affectionate and steady management
would soon exercise its happy influence.
Rosa was of a lively and restless spirit, and
she wanted constant and varied employment
to keep her out of mischief; and aunt Lucy
strove to accommodate her plans to Rosa's
natural temperament. The carelessness of
childhood, which was simply the result of an
energetic disposition, was treated as such,
and not magnified, as it too frequently is,
BOSA AND TRI BOOK.
rORA's CHILDHOOD. 2s
into a fault. Rosa was high-pirited and
self-willed, but she was very impressible;
and a gentle remonstrance would melt her to
tears, when harsh and severe language would
only have strengthened her disobedience.
One day, Rosa was amusing herself with a
large and very expensive book of engravings,
which had attracted her childish fancy by its
handsome cover. The rapid and heedless
manner in which she turned over the pages
was likely to injure the beauty of the volume.
"You will spoil that nice book, Miss
Rosa," said the servant who was with her, as
she gently attempted to remove it.
"No, I shall not hurt it," exclaimed Rosa,
holding the treasure as tightly as she could
with her little fat hands.
"But your aunt will not be pleased if she
sees you with it."
But I must look at it," said Rosa, angrily.
The servant, finding that remonstrance was
vain, at length interfered, and took it away
Rosa was highly indignant at this proceed-
ing; and she expressed her disapprobation, as
most little folks do, by an undue elevation
of the voice, until her loud screams reached
the drawing-room, and brought her aunt to
ascertain their cause. It was soon explained.
"0 Rosa!" exclaimed aunt Lucy, gravely;
"you should not be so tiresome."
Rosa had retreated to a little distance, when
24 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
she heard her aunt coming: but she felt her-
self ill-used both by her aunt and the servant;
and as she stood twisting the end of her sash
round her fingers, she murmured in a half-
troubled, half-resentful tone, "I want to go
Cold indeed must have been the heart
which could have heard untouched this simple
sentence from the lips of a little motherless
girl, even although it was sobbed forth rather
in anger than in grief: and as aunt Lucy
drew the child towards her, she said, in very
gentle accents, "But you cannot go to your
mamma now, dear Rosa."
But I will go to mamma !" exclaimed the
"Your dear mamma is with God in heaven,"
continued aunt Lucy, kindly; "and you can-
not now go to her there: but you will see her
again some day, and be very, very happy, if
you love God, and try to overcome your
wrong tempers, and to be gentle and obe-
Rosa listened quietly, for her rebellious
feelings were hushed by the calm tones of
"Will God love me if I am good, then ?"
God loves you now, my dear Rosa," re-
plied aunt Lucy. "He is very kind to you;
he gives you all the nice things you have,
and dear friends to take care of you, because
ROSA'S CHILDHOOD. 25
he wants you to be very happy. But he is
grieved when he sees you so passionate and
Rosa looked very grave, but she did not
"'It is not right, my little Rosa, when
God is so very kind and good to you, to care
nothing about pleasing him. Will you not
try to do what he likes ? Will you not strive
against your hasty temper?"
Rosa softly answered, "Yes;" for, like most
children, she generally made fair promises:
but she was really sincere when she said so,
because she wished to oblige aunt Lucy; and
she lifted her flushed cheek for a kiss as a
proof that she was in earnest.
Rosa had no higher motive then. She did
not feel that love to God should be the spring
of all our thoughts and actions, and that our
first endeavour should be to please him. But
her heavenly Father was watching over her,
although as yet she knew him not; and he
had brought her into the midst of this happy
family, that she might learn to love and serve
him, and find that his ways are ways of plea-
santness and that his paths are peace.
Aunt Lucy was still comparatively young,
and she retained that freshness and youthful-
ness of feeling which it is so delightful to
meet with in grown-up persons. Rosa fancied
that she was like her own mamma; and yet
Mrs. Evelyn had dark hair and eyes, and very
26 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
pale cheeks, while aunt Lucy's eyes were blue,
and she had light brown curls and a blooming
complexion. But it was the sweet smile and
the affectionate glance which rested on Rosa
that recalled her mother to her mind; it was
the gentle influence of love which attracted
Edith was two years older than Rosa: but
there appeared more difference than that be-
tween them, for Edith was a tall, slender girl,
and very quiet and thoughtful; while Rosa
was short for her age, and wild and careless
in her movements. Dr. Wilson used to call
them the "lily" and the "rose." Rosa
always said that the lily was the best of all
flowers; Edith maintained that the rose was
the sweetest and the prettiest; and Arthur
said that both were so nice that it was im-
possible to like one better than the other.
Arthur was very fond of his cousin: she
was more like himself than Edith, and there-
fore suited him better, for Rosa was full of
life and spirits, and never still for five minutes
together if she could help it; and Arthur
dearly loved a boisterous game, and a merry
chase round the garden. Rosa was always
ready to join him; and her joyous laugh and
bounding step would have done Mr. Evelyn
good, if he could have heard her. She looked
as gay and light-hearted as if she had never
known a moment's uneasiness; and sheltered
in her peaceful home from trouble and un-
ROSA'S CHILDHOOD. 27
kindness, she was so happy that she rarely
thought of her mamma, at least with any
feeling of regret. It is well that the grief of
childhood, although vivid and real, is seldom
lasting; for the morning of life should be
bright and sunny, and the heart buoyant
Many were the pleasant hours which the
children spent by themselves in the open air:
sometimes running about in the green fields,
gathering the daisies and primroses, and other
simple flowers, and weaving them into gar-
lands; and sometimes wandering down the
shady lane, watching the slow-sailing clouds
over their heads, and listening to the sweet
song of the birds, and to the rippling music
of the merry brook; and sometimes they
sat in the rustic summer-house, playing with
their waxen dolls, and preparing little feasts
with a few cakes and some wild strawberries;
while Arthur, who, like all boys, professed a
perfect disdain for "dolls," drew and painted
his little pictures, and managed to eat some
of their strange dishes, with their high-sound-
But although they were generally very
happy together, little disagreements would
sometimes arise between them; and it must
in truth be owned that Rosa was generally
the occasion of them. Her impetuous temper
and love of dominion made her apt to take
offence where none was intended, and to be
28 ROSA'8 CHILDHOOD.
dissatisfied if she could not have just her own
way. Edith generally yielded to her, but
Arthur was not so accommodating: and it
was perhaps best for Rosa that he was not;
because, if he had been, she would never have
learned the necessity of sometimes giving up
her own wishes for the sake of others.
"Let us play at hide and seek," Arthur
would perhaps say.
"No, no," Rosa would reply, "I do not
want that to-day; we will have a game at
"But Edith and I like the other best,
Rosa, and you had your choice last time."
"Well, I shall not play at hide and seek
now," would be the reply, with a frown of
"You are very unkind and selfish, Rosa."
"And you are very tiresome and disagree-
able, Arthur; and I shall not play with you
at all, if you do not take care.
The result would be, that either Arthur
and Edith would give way for the sake of
peace, or else that Rosa would walk proudly
away, and spoil their enjoyment by refusing
to play with them.
It was a bright summer's day; and Arthur
and Rosa had been amusing themselves by
running from the garden gate to the house
door, and trying which could run the fastest.
Wearied with the violent exercise, they sat
down to rest in the summer-house, where
ROSA'8 CHILDHOOD. 29
they were joined by Edith, who had been
reading to her aunt. Rosa was not in the
best of moods, for she was vexed that Arthur
should have run more nimbly than herself,
and therefore she was not disposed to look
very favourably on a piece of mischief which
she discovered he had been performing. Her
doll's straw bonnet had been painted over in
green stripes; and its appearance, in the eyes
of any young lady, was totally spoiled. Rosa
was justly displeased with her cousin; but
she burst forth into such loud and angry
expressions of resentment, that Edith was
frightened. Arthur was a thoughtless little
fellow, and he had not been aware, while
exercising his painting propensity, how much
injury he was committing; and now Rosa's
passionate words made him think it greater
than it really was. He tried, however, to
make light of it; and said, in a merry tone,
"Why, Rosa, it looks much prettier than it
did before, and the green matches so exactly
with the satin ribbon."
"You are a most provoking boy!" ex-
claimed Rosa, indignantly: "you do every-
thing you possibly can to teaze me; but I
will not put up with it, indeed I will not."
"Never mind, Rosa dear," interposed
Edith, in a tone of comfort; "I think I can
wash off the paint, and then the bonnet will
not look any the worse."
"You shall not touch it," answered Rosa,
30 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
snatching her bonnet from the table; and, in
her haste to preserve it from Edith's kind
intention, she squeezed it so much out of
shape that Arthur fairly laughed.
Rosa could bear no more; her cheeks
glowed with anger; and seizing a new picture
of Arthur's, which he had bought that morn-
ing, she tore it into pieces before him.
"O R Rosa Rosa!" said a gentle voice.
Rosa turned round, and met the mild, re-
proving glance of aunt Lucy. The colour in
her cheeks deepened now from shame; but,
eager to avert blame from herself, she held
up the doll's bonnet, and exclaimed, "It is
all Arthur's fault, indeed it is, aunt; look how
he has spoiled this on purpose."
Aunt Lucy quietly laid the bonnet on the
table, and said, We will talk of this another
time, Rosa; you will come with me now."
She led the child towards the house, without
saying any more to her: and aunt Lucy's
silence gave Rosa's heated spirit time to cool;
and before they reached the house she felt
that she had been wrong as well as Arthur.
Aunt Lucy sat down on the sofa, and placed
Rosa beside her; and perceiving the softened
expression of her countenance, she said gently,
" Will my little Rosa never try to govern her
0 aunt, Arthur was so very provoking."
"But, Rosa, were you less so? I shall
speak to Arthur about it; but were your
ROSA'8 CHILDHOOD. 31
angry reproaches likely to make your cousin
fee sorry that he had been so careless?"
"Indeed, aunt, Arthur was not careless
only, he was unkind," persisted Rosa; "for I
am sure he painted my bonnet on purpose
to vex me."
"Are you quite sure of that, Rosa?" said
her aunt. "I think you are not aware that
the picture which you tore up in your anger
was bought by Arthur, with his weekly allow-
ance, as a present for you."
Rosa coloured, and hung down her head.
"0 aunt, I wish I had not torn it; but I was
so cross with Arthur that I hardly knew what
I believe you, dear Rosa. But how sad it
is to lose all command over your feelings.
You might even kill some one m a fit of pas-
sion, as the little girl did her infant brother."
"How can I be gentle and good-tempered?"
said Rosa, sorrowfully.
"Look at your Saviour, my dear child.
When you are going to be angry, think how
mild and patient he was, and try to be like
him. Ask God t6 make you like him; and
pray for strength to strivwgainst your sinful
Aunt Lucy had not time to say more, for
she was summoned away to speak to a person
who had called on business, and when she
returned Rosa had left the room; but on
passing by the window, she saw Rosa hasten-
32 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
ing to meet her cousins, who were coming
slowly up the gravel walk. What wa said
aunt Lucy could not hear at that distance;
but she saw that Rosa threw her arms around
Arthur's neck, and gave him a kiss of recon-
"0 Arthur!" she exclaimed, "I am so very
sorry that I spoiled your picture."
"Never mind, Rosy dear, it was my own
fault; because I am sure you would never
have done so if I had not vexed you about
the doll's bonnet."
Rosa was going to say that Arthur's un-
kindness did not excuse her ill-temper, but
Edith interrupted the conversation: she
thought that Rosa had expressed sorrow
enough for the past, and she kindly wished
to turn to a more pleasing subject. So before
Rosa could begin her reply, she said quickly,
"0 Rosa, you must come and look at your
garden; for your dear little rosebud has blown
so nicely. I saw it before breakfast this
morning; and I meant to have told you, but
I quite forgot it."
The children ran eagerly towards Rosa's
little plot of group .
Oh, what a beauty !" exclaimed Arthur,
in a tone of admiration.
"I am so glad it is such a fine one," said
Rosa, because it is for aunt Lucy."
"O Rosa, it is a pity to gather it, answered
Edith; "wait till some more come out."
ROSA'S CHILDHOOD. 33
"Oh, they will soon be out," said Rosa;
"aunt Lucy must have the first one. Will
you lend me your knife to cut the stalk,
please, Arthur ?"
The knife was produced from Arthur's
pocket, and the rose speedily severed from
the bush. It was carried with great care
to the house; and then Rosa ran into the
parlour, exclaiming, "Here is my rose, my
first rose, dear aunt; I have been watching
all the week for it to come out, that I might
give it to you."
Aunt Lucy thanked Rosa warmly, as she
took the beautiful flower; and, pressing her to
her bosom, imprinted a kiss on her cheek. It
was enough: aunt Lucy knew, by the clear,
open look of the little girl, that she had
frankly owned her fault to her cousin; and
Rosa felt that her past conduct was freely
forgiven. When she kneeled that evening to
repeat her simple prayers, she remembered
her aunt's advice; and silently asked for
strength from above to overcome the hastiness
of her temper.
A few days afterwards, when Rosa went as
usual into the play-roon, after saying her
lessons, she was surprised to find on the table
a new straw bonnet for her doll, so exactly
like the old one that she would have thought
it was the same, only it was trimmed with
?ink ribbon instead of green,and had evidently
never been used.
34 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
"0 Edith, where did this come from Y"
said Rosa. "Is it your ?"
"No, Rosa," replied her cousin, "somebody
left it here for you:" and she smiled so archly
that Rosa guessed directly who it was.
"It was Arthur, then,;-yes, I am sure it
was," continued Rosa. How kind, how very
kind of him to buy it for me."
"You forget how he spoiled the other,"
"No, I do not," said Rosa; "but then I tore
his picture, you know. Oh, I shall never be
cross with Arthur again; at least," she added,
"I will try not to be so."
And Rosa did try; and it was a long time
before Arthur and she had any serious quarrel
together: and Rosa thought it was really a
good thing he painted her doll's bonnet; for,
whenever she felt inclined to quarrel with
him, she remembered the unfortunate bonnet,
and endeavoured to restrain her feelings.
Two or three years passed quietly by; and
Rosa was slowly but steadily improving.
Aunt Lucy's kind and judicious guidance
directed her natural abilities into their right
channel, and taught her to exercise the self-
control she required. It is not, however,
meant that a complete victory was gained
over old habits and dispositions. Rom had
still much, very much, to learn and to attain.
It is not natural for us to do that which is
right and good, and therefore we find it very
difficult; but if we persevere, in dependence
on God's help, success is certain.
But had Rosa, in her new home, forgotten
her papa? Had new friends effaced old ones
from her memory? Oh no, Rosa loved her
papa very much; and she often thought of
im, and talked about him. His letters were
always joyfully received, and prized above all
her treasures; and when he came himself to
see her, which he did as frequently as his
engagements would permit, her delight was
Mr. Evelyn missed his little girl very much.
Her merry laugh and playful words no longer
welcomed him after the fatigues of the day;
and his home seemed dull and desolate with-
out her. But he reconciled himself to her
absence, by the remembrance that it was for
her good; and he often pictured to himself
the happy period when she would become his
constant and intelligent companion.
36 ROSA'8 CHILDHOOD.
"I CANNOT learn my poetry this morning,"
said Rosa, one day, when she had finished
writing her copy.
"Why not ?" inquired Edith.
Because I cannot find the book any-
where: I have looked in all the places I can
think of, but it seems to have disappeared.
Oh, I recollect now, I saw Arthur with it
yesterday; I must go and ask him for it.
Oh, here he comes! Arthur, you are just
the very person I want; where have you put
"Your poetry-book, Rosa! I have not
even seen it," said Arthur, in astonishment.
"Indeed, Arthur, I saw it in your hand
yesterday afternoon, just before tea-time; so
pray try and remember where you put it,
for I am waiting for it"
"But I tell you, Rosa, that I never had
it," replied Arthur, rather impatiently. I
hate reading poetry, unless it is something
very fine: besides, I must surely know whe-
ther I had your book or not."
"But I am sure you had it, Arthur," said
Rosa, earnestly; "and I cannot be mistaken,
because I recollect noticing the green cover."
I do not know whether the cover is green
BOsA'S CHILDHOOD. S7
or red," answered Arthur, merrily. But it
certainly was not near my fingers, I assure
you; so you must think of some one else,
"Oh no, I am quite positive that it was
"Do not be so positive, my dear Rosa,"
said aunt Lucy, mildly; "perhaps you will
find it presently."
"But I really feel certain about it," re-
plied Rosa; "and I am as likely to be right
"0 Rosa, now I think of it," said Edith,
looking up from her work, "your poetry-
book has a blue cover, not a green one; so
it was most probably some other book that
Now then, Rosa!" exclaimed Arthur,
"you are wrong in one point you see, and you
will soon find out that you are in all."
Rosa was rather disconcerted. "Well, I
cannot be sure that the colour was green-it
might have been blue; but that does not
signify, the book was the same."
But I thought you were sure it was
green just now," remarked Arthur, playfully.
Rosa hesitated. It was so dark then
that I might easily mistake one colour for
another, especially when they are so much
alike in the dusk."
"It is impossible to convince you," said
Arthur, laughing; "so we may as well give
38 BROA'S CHILDHOOD.
up trying to do so. But I will help you to
look for it, if you like."
Not now, dear Arthur, thank you;" ob-
served aunt Lucy; Rosa cannot well spare
the time, because I wish her to practise her
new piece of music before Edith has finished
her netting. She must try and find her
book afterwards: it is most probably in the
In the afternoon, as the children were
alternately reading aloud to aunt Lucy, Dr.
Wilson opened the door, and said, "Has a
certain young lady lost one of her books ?"
Is it a poetry-book with a blue cover?"
exclaimed Arthur, eagerly.
Yes, it is," answered Dr. Wilson; "but
how are you so well acquainted with it-it is
not yours, I believe?"
"No, papa, it is Rosa's; but as I was
accused of losing it, I feel glad that it has
returned in safety."
"Where did you find it, uncle ?" inquired
"In my study; you left it there yesterday,
when you ran in to tell me that aunt Lucy
wished to speak to me in the greenhouse.
You were so busy about the new plants, that
you laid down your book on the sofa, and
forgot to fetch it."
Rosa blushed, and looked confused.
Now, Rosa," said Arthur, triumphantly,
"you were wrong, you see."
ROSA'S CHILDHOOD. 39
"Well, I am sure I thought you had it,
Arthur," replied his cousin; "and after all, I
only made a mistake: any one is liable to
make a mistake."
Rosa had a great deal of pride; and she
would make any excuse for herself rather
than confess that she had been in fault.
Yes, Rosa," said aunt Lucy; but should
not this very reflection keep you from being
so confident? The possibility that we may
be mistaken should make us cautious and
moderate in our assertions."
SI thought you liked persons to have an
opinion of their own,"answered Rosa, pushing
the innocent blue book angrily away from
her. "You said the other day, that without
firmness and decision of character no one
could be really respected."
Aunt Lucy smiled, but her smile was a
sad one, for she was sorry to see the little
girl so unwilling to own her error. "My
dear Rosa," she said, seriously, "you must
surely perceive the difference between a
modest yet steady adherence to some im-
portant principle, and obstinately persisting
m a trifling matter like the present. But
we will not argue the point any further now.
I am glad the book is found, because you can
learn the piece of poetry which your uncle
wished you to repeat to him this evening."
Rosa took the book rather sullenly, and
turned over its pages several times before
40 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
she chose to apply herself to the piece she
was desired to commit to memory. But the
pleasing cadence of the rhyme soon soothed
er disturbed feelings, and perhaps the sen-
timents of the poetry also awakened better
thoughts in her mind: for the cloud passed
away from her brow; and when she repeated
the lines to aunt Lucy, her voice had re-
gained its usual sweetness.
She lingered behind the rest when the
summons to tea dispersed the little party;
and, throwing her arms round aunt Lucy,
said, in a tone of mingled affection and self-
reproach, "Oh, I am very sorry I was so
positive and self-willed; will you forgive me,
It was impossible to resist such an appeal:
aunt Lucy kissed her fondly, and assured
her that the past was forgotten. Who could
help loving a child whose faults and failures
were thus ingenuously acknowledged? And
yet aunt Lucy sometimes feared whether
Rsa might not be tempted to think that the
frank confession of wrong conduct was an
ample compensation for it; for she knew
that indulgence in sinful habits is sometimes
strengthened by the idea that we can easily
make up for them by our repentance. It is
well to own when we do wrong; but it is
far better to try and do that which is right.
RosA stood at the parlour window one fine,
sunny morning, watching three little spar-
rows that were busily picking up some
crumbs which she had thrown out to them.
The hungry birds seemed very thankful for
their nice breakfast, and Rosa was much
amused at the droll way in which they hopped
about after the tiny bits of bread. But they
soon finished their meal, and flew away to
the thick-leaved trees, where they were quite
hidden from Rosa's sight: and yet Rosa still
lingered at the window as if she were un-
willing to leave it. It was a lovely morning,
just the morning for a walk; and perhaps
Rosa thought so, for she gazed wistfully on
the velvet lawn and neatly-gravelled paths,
and then on the pleasant fields and hills
beyond, and at last turned away with a deep
sigh. What was the cause of that heavy
sigh, and why did Rosa cast such a mourn-
ful glance at the table? There was nothing
on the table but a slate and pencil, a book,
and a glass filled with fresh-gathered flowers.
Shall we let Rosa speak for herself?
"I wish I might go out this morning
instead of doing these nasty sums," said
Ros, in a very discontented tone; it is too
42 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
bad to be forced to waste my time over a
slate on such a fine day. The little sparrows
are better off than I am, for they can fly
about wherqyer they please, and they have
no hard sums to worry them. I hate long
division, that I do."
Perhaps you will smile, dear reader, at
Rosa's envying the little birds because they
were not obliged to learn ciphering: and
Rosa would have done so herself at any
other time; but she was not in a smiling
mood just then. She drew the slate so un-
willingly towards her that she dragged the
table-cover with it; and then she pushed
back the table-cover with such an angry air,
as if that were at all to blame for getting out
of its place. The table-cover was more easily
put right than Rosa's temper, because she
did not really try to overcome her discontent;
and it was very plain, by the careless and
listless manner in which she wrote down two
or three figures, that the sums were not likely
to be correctly done, if they were done at all.
Presently another deep sigh a heaved;
and th ten the slate was laid on the tfble; and
Rosa strolled to the other side of the room,
and fetched her knitting-needles. The sums
were scarcely touched.
Rosa had just taken her needles, and sat
down again, when aunt Lucy came and
"What! the sums finished already, Rosa?"
BOSA'S CHILDHOOD. 43
Oh no," said Rosa; "but I wanted to
try the new stitch which Edith taught me
yesterday: I think it will do so nicely for
my pair of cuffs, worked in pink and white
"But your sums should be attended to
"Yes, aunt; but I really cannot do them
now. I have tried one, but it will not come
"Try, try, try again," said aunt Lucy,
smiling; "you did two yesterday, Rosa, with-
out much trouble."
"But I do not feel in the humour for
ciphering this morning," replied Rosa; "and
I never can do anything well if I am not.
It is so fine out of doors, I am longing for a
walk; and, then, I cannot rest until I know
this stitch quite perfectly."
"0 Rosa," said aunt Lucy, gravely, "I
am sorry to hear you talk in this way.
Rosa looked up with a little surprise.
"Why, aunt, you know I cannot bear cipher-
ing; and it really is not pleasant to pore over
a slate when I do so want to get these cuffs
"I did not say it was pleasant, Rosa, nor
do I think it is; but your inquiry should be,
Is it my duty?"
Yes,'t," repeated aunt Lucy, cheer-
fully; that is the first point to be considered.
44 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
Your likes and dislikes about things must
not decide your actions; settle what you
ought to do, and then never hesitate."
But it cannot signify," said Rosa,
"whether I do my sums to-day, or leave
them till to-morrow."
"No, Rosa, so far as your progress in
arithmetic is concerned, one day's loss of
study will not make much difference; but
the habit which you are thus forming is of
very great consequence. You are preferring
pleasure to duty; you are choosing that
which is agreeable instead of that which is
"But this is such a trifling thing, aunt."
"The principle is just the same, Rosa;
and if you give way once, you will do so
again. It is yielding in little things which
forms a weak and irresolute character. We
must resist trifling temptations, if we would
be able to overcome great ones. 1egin in
good earnest, Rosa; do your sums, and walk
or knit afterwards."
Rosa glanced at her slate on the table,
then at her knitting, and lastly at the
blue sky and bright sunshine outside-and
she hesitated. Inclination drew her one
way, and duty another: which would gain
the victory? It seemed doubtful for a mo-
ment; but duty triumphed. Rosajut down
her knitting-needles, turned awIfrom the
bright window, and took up her slate with a
steady determination to finish her sums. "It
is of no use to fancy that I cannot do them,"
she thought to herself; "I can do them, and
I will. Aunt Lucy is right; duty must come
Rosa bent over her slate with that decided
air which shows that the mind is resolved to
struggle through every difficulty that may
oppose the fulfilment of its purpose. The
first sum was soon handed for aunt Lucy's
inspection. It was quite correct; and the
young arithmetician began the second with
renewed vigour. But the second was not so
easily managed. One figure was proved to
be wrong, and Rosa could not find out the
cause of her error. She went over it three
times, and still she was at a loss. She was
half-tempted to give up: the knitting was
so easy-the garden looked so pleasant I
It will not come right!" said impatience.
"It must come right !" said duty.
And the voice of duty prevailed; the head
was again bent over the slate, and after one
or two more efforts, the wrong figure was
rubbed out, and the right one inserted. How
pleasant it is to overcome a difficulty! at
least, so Rosa thought, as she put away her
slate, and prepared for a pleasant ramble
with her aunt and cousins.
The walk was more than usually pleasant
that morning; the sun appeared to shine
more brightly; the flowers seemed to shed a
46 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
sweeter fragrance; and the golden corn-
fields looked more beautiful, Rosa thought,
than they had ever done. Ah I it was the
sunshine of the heart which cast such love-
liness on all around; peace within, deepened
the beauty without. Have you never found
it so, dear young reader ? Have you never
found that a happy and quiet mind has been
the real source of your highest enjoyment ?
Yes; you know that the earnest and perse-
vering attempt to fulfil your duty not only
brings with it a rich satisfaction, but also
sweetens all other joys; while a conscience
that is ill at ease throws a shadow every-
where. If you wish, then, to be happy and
light-hearted, be diligent and faithful in the
discharge of your daily duties.
It was a simple action-so simple that
you think it very unimportant whether it
had been performed or not-which made
Rosa feel so glad, as she ran across the lawn;
and yet to her steady application to those
long division sums might be traced some of
the brightest actions of her future life. It
was her first direct effort to make pleasure
bend to duty; and this successful effort was
the formation of a habit which proved of
incalculable benefit in more serious matters.
"0 EDITH I have such delightful news for
you," exclaimed Rosa, as she ran into the
parlour one day, and threw herself with so
little ceremony on the sofa that her cousin's
basket of work was overturned, and three
reels of cotton rolled off in different directions.
"Now look, Rosa!" said Edith, in a tone
of slight vexation; "you have upset my work,
and you have made me drop this blot of ink
on my letter to uncle George."
"Never mind the blot," rejoined Rosa;
"just tell uncle George that I was in one of my
wild moods, and gave the table a tremendous
shake, and he will not feel at all surprised.
Besides, Edith, I have an invitation for you
which is worth a dozen blots."
"An invitation !" repeated Edith. "From
whom? make haste and tell me all about it."
You ought to be kept in suspense a little
while,for grumbling over that ink-spot instead
of attending to me," said her cousin, laugh-
ing: "but must tell you, for I have not
patience to wait. Well," continued Rosa, as
she flung her bonnet carelessly on a chair,
"Mrs. Morgan is going to have a nice little
gipsying party next Wednesday, and we-
that is, you and Arthur, and my own dear
48 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
self-are invited: we are to take our dinners
with us, and to go as far as the ruins of the
old castle. Will it not be delightful?"
"Yes, indeed," replied Edith. "I am so
glad we are asked. I hope it will be a fine day."
"Oh, I think it will," said Rosa; "the
weather is so beautiful now, and it does not
seem likely to change. I mean to enjoy my-
self very much; and aunt Lucy will not be
there, so I shall have no one to fidget me, by
telling me not to run too fast, and to mind
that I do not tear my frock."
"O Rosa!" said Edith, reproachfully.
"Well, Edith," replied Rosa, in a tone of
apology, I love aunt Lucy dearly; but it is
rather tiresome not to do just as I like on
such a day. I like to be quite wild, and free,
"And tear your frock," said Edith, play-
"No, not that exactly," answered Rosa,
smiling: I do not want to be rude or rough;
but I never can be so steady and orderly as
you are, Edith, so it is of no use to try. But
here is Arthur coming up the garden, I see;
I must run and tell him the good news."
Away flew Rosa, as gaily, and almost as
swiftly, as the bright-winged butterfly which
she chased before her; while Edith quietly
picked up the truant cotton-reels, and tried
to erase the blot from her letter.
The next afternoon, Rosa expressed to aunt
ROBA'S CHILDHOOD. 49
Lucy her wish to go and meet Arthur on his
return from a walk.
"I think, my love, you had better stay at
home; it looks as if it would rain."
Oh, that dark cloud is passing over," said
Rosa, confidently; "and I promised Arthur
that, if you would let me, I would meet him
at the old church."
Rosa pressed so earnestly for permission to
go, that aunt Lucy gave her consent; but it
was given so reluctantly, that, unless Rosa
had been quite bent upon having her own
way, she would not have availed herself of it.
"Put on your thick shoes, Rosa, if you
must go; and you will find your umbrella in
my room-it was left there the last time you
Rosa was very unwilling to wear her thick
shoes; but she said nothing about her dislike
to them, because she knew that remonstrance
on that point would be useless. But she was
resolved not to take the umbrella. It was so
heavy to carry; and it made her look so un-
graceful, not at all like a lady: for Rosa, like
many other little girls, not only had a great
ambition to be thought lady-like, but she also
possessed some singular ideas respecting a
lady's qualifications. These ideas were, how-
ever, seldom expressed in words; and aunt
Lucy was therefore not aware what an incum-
brance a light silk umbrella was to her little
niece. Rosa left the umbrella undisturbed in
50 NROA'S CHILDHOOD.
the corer of her aunt's room, and took her
little parasol with her instead; and as she did
not return to the parlour when dressed, the
substitute was not seen.
The dark cloud did not pass away as Rosa
had predicted; it became larger and darker;
and she had scarcely joined Arthur before a
few drops warned them to make haste home
as quickly as possible. A heavy shower
came on; there was no place of shelter near;
and Rosa's thin dress was soon wet through.
Poor Rosa!' how thankful she would have
been just then for the large, ungraceful
umbrella; for her parasol-that "doll's sort
of thing," as Arthur contemptuously styled
it-was of but little use to her. She was
very wet and tired when they reached home;
and her head ached sadly with walking so
fast; for.Rosa, although she generally enjoyed
good health, was not strong. She was dis-
satisfied with herself too; and this made her
submit without opposition to aunt Lucy's
wise suggestion that she should go to bed
immediately. No reproaches were addressed
to her, for aunt Lucy saw that she was con-
scious how self-willed she had been, and that
she was suffering enough from its con-
A violent cold was the result of Rosa's un-
wise excursion; and it was so severe as to
prevent her making one of the gipsying party
on Friday. This was a sad disappointment.
ROSA AND AUTTHUR.
ROSA'8 CHILDHOOD. 58
"I shall stay at home too, if Rosa does;
it will not be so dull for her," said Edith,
Aunt Lucy did not say "no" to this pro-
posal, because she knew that Rosa was too
generous, or rather too just, to agree to it.
She was right; Rosa warmly thanked her
cousin for her self-denying offer, but as
warmly declined it.
It is my own fault that I cannot go, Edith,
but I had much rather that you went; you
must not lose your pleasure through me."
"But indeed, Rosa, I should like to stay;
and I shall enjoy myself as much here as at
Mrs. Morgan's'party, since you cannot go."
"Yes, dear Edith, I know that," said Rosa,
affectionately, "but I should not; so you
must say good bye. Arthur is calling you;
do not keep him waiting any longer."
Rosa's cheerful look vanished with Edith's
departure, for it was only put on to lessen
her cousin's regret at leaving her.; and the
tears came into her eyes when she heard the
hall door shut. It was a beautiful day, so
warm and sunny that it seemed hard any
one should be obliged to remain in-doors,
especially when there was a pleasant gipsying
party in prospect; and although Rosa spoke
truly when she said it was her own fault that
she could not accompany her cousins, yet the
disappointment was keenly felt, perhaps more
keenly on this very account. She might
54 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
have avoided it had she only yielded to the
guidance of another: she could not blame
any one but herself, and it was this thought
that increased her sorrow.
Aunt Lucy saw Rosa's tears, but she would
not pain her by noticing them; so she quietly
slipped out of the room, and it was so very
long before she returned that Rosa's tears
were almost inclined to come again. "She
might think how dull I am all alone," mur-
mured the weary little girl to herself. "I
thought she would have sat beside me; but
I am to have nothing but disappointments, I
Nothing but disappointments! Rosa did
not suppose so the next minute, for aunt
Lucy stood by her side with a new story-
book in her hand, the very story-book which
Rosa had been wishing for during the last
"0 aunt Lucy," exclaimed Rosa, as her
cheek flushed, partly with pleasure at the
welcome gift, and partly with shame for her
unkind thoughts, how very kind of you to
get this for me; it is more than I deserve."
We will not talk about what we deserve,"
replied aunt Lucy, with a gentle smile; "but
I will read to you now if you like, for your
eyes seem very weak."
The little invalid gratefully accepted the
offer; and so interesting was the book, and
the remarks which it excited, that the hours
passed far more rapidly and pleasantly than
Rosa had dared to anticipate in the early part
of the morning.
Edith and Arthur returned from their ex-
cursion in high spirits, loaded with a large
nosegay of flowers and a bag of cakes for
Rosa, from Mrs. Morgan, and many sincere
regrets for her absence from the young people.
Probably some of our readers may feel in-
clined to echo Rosa's own words, and say
that "it was more than she deserved." Per-
haps it was; but if you and I had nothing
which we did not really deserve, dear reader,
how much do you think we should possess?
56 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
"Do you not think it is very hard to keep
one's temper when anything very provoking
occure" said Rosa, one morning, as she
finished reading a little anecdote to aunt
Lucy which illustrated the advantages of
"It is hard, certainly," replied aunt Lucy,
smiling, "especially if we have not accus-
tomed ourselves to much restraint; but then
the happiness we experience in so doing fully
compensates for our trouble."
"But do you not think," remarked Edith,
"that it is almost impossible for some people
to be patient and good-humoured?"
"No, dear Edith," said aunt Lucy, seri-
ously, "I do not think it impossible to any
one who really seeks for grace and strength
to assist her."
"Well, I do not know how it is," replied
Rosa, "but I seem as if I could not help
being 'put out' when anything provoking
occurs; and yet I do try very hard."
Then you must not be discouraged," said
aunt Lucy, cheerfully: "and indeed I think
you have already great encouragement to
persevere. I was much pleased yesterday to
hear how gently you spoke to Arthur, when
you found that he had purchased the wrong
book for you."
Rosa looked gratified. "Yes, I was going
to scold him at first; but I recollected that I
was the most to blame for not having written
the title for him on a slip of paper. It was
so very similar to the one which he brought,
that he was not likely to notice the difference;
and I felt that I ought not to be angry with
him. So you see I had nothing to make me
lose my temper, aunt Lucy; and therefore
there was no merit in keeping it."
"And do you not also see, Rosa," said
aunt Lucy, with a smile, "how seldom, if
ever, you would give way to angry feelings
and expressions if you were first to stop, as
you did yesterday, to consider the circum-
stances of the case, and to make all the
allowance for it that you could? One reason
why we lose our tempers is because we act
from the impulse of the moment. If you had
not allowed yourself to think first, before you
spoke to Arthur, it is possible that you would
have irritated him, and have vexed yourself.
I always find it is the best plan, when I feel
at all annoyed or offended, to wait a minute
and reflect whether I have any real cause to
be so; and by that time my ruffled temper
gets smoothed again."
"0 aunt Lucy," said Rosa, "but your
temper is naturally so much better than
58 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
mine; I do not think you are ever cross or
angry. I wish I could be as good and as
gee as you are; but I am afraid I never
"I am sure, dear Rosa, that I have had
quite as much to contend with in my own
disposition as you have in yours. You look
incredulous, Rosa; but if my dear mother
were living, she could tell you how much
anxiety my impatience and irritability some-
times oscasioned her when I was a little girl.
I lived for three or four years, while very
young, with my grandmother; and she always
let me have my own way, and never checked
my impetuosity and self-will. 'Lucy is cer-
tainly very hasty and passionate, sometimes,'
she would say, m reply to the remonstrances
of my grandfather, but she cannot help her
natural disposition; and, besides, her angry
fits are soon over, and then she is one of the
best children I ever saw. She will grow wiser
as she gets older.'
"My mother reasoned very differently.
She knew that an unrestrained temper is a
misery to its possessor, and to all within reach
of its influence; and when I returned home
she tried to show me the importance of
governing my feelings. But bad habits are
not easily lost; and when I found that one
or two efforts would not achieve that victory
over self which I really wished to attain, I
thought my grandmother must be right, and
BOSA'S CHILDHOOD. 59
that I could not alter my natural dispoation.
'Indeed, mamma,' I used to say, would
never be angry if I could help it.
One morning, however, it happened that
a lady whose good opinion I was very anxious
to secure called to see my parents; and while
they were engaged in some interesting con-
versation to which I was listening, a servant,
in passing out of the room, upset a jug of
water over a beautiful silk bag which had
arrived that morning as a present from my
grandmother. When I perceived the acci-
dent, the colour rushed to my cheeks, and an
angry exclamation rose to my lips; but I im-
mediately restrained my temper, and endea-
voured to appear as little annoyed as I could
at the carelessness of the girl, because I did
not wish to lose the esteem of our visitor.
My mother commended me afterwards for
the cheerfulness which I had manifested, and
then said, 'Now you will not tell me again,
Lucy, that you cannot help losing your tem-
per, because you have helped it this morning.'
'But, mamma,' I answered, almost without
thought, 'that was because Mrs. Graham was
here.' 'Yes, dear,' said my mother, smiling,
' I understand the reason; but I am sure
you will allow that what you can do at one
time is surely not impossible at another.
You have proved to me and to yourself that
you can control your temper.'
I saw the force of my mother's remarks;
60 BOSA'S CHILDHOOD.
and from that day I gave up the foolish ex-
cuse which I had learned from my grand-
mother, and endeavoured to imitate the
gentleness and amiability which I so much
admired in my own dear mother. And if I
have learned, in some measure at least, to
govern my temper, surely you may hope to
do the same. You know where to look for
assistance, dear Rosa."
Rosa was cheered by aunt Lucy's sym-
pathy and gentle words of encouragement.
The simple fact that another person had
actually surmounted the same difficulties
which were then perplexing her was of more
use to her, perhaps, than the best advice
which could have been given on the subject.
Rosa sometimes wished that she was half
as good as Edith; for Edith was quiet and
thoughtful, and generally unruffled in her
temper. But Edith, although the early and
excellent training of aunt Lucy had saved
her from many of the difficulties which her
cousin met with in the path of duty, had
faults to contend with as well as Rosa. My
youthful readers must not imagine that
because they are neither impetuous nor self-
willed, as our little friend Rosa was, that
their characters are therefore less marked by
Edith's principal temptations were those
of indolence and selfishness. She disliked
trouble and exertion; and on this account
she was too prone to personal ease and self-
"Where is Rosa?" said Arthur,one evening,
as he burst into the parlour. "I cannot find
"What do you want with Rosa ?" inquired
aunt Lucy, looking up from the book which
she was reading.
"I want my glove mended-it has got such
a hole in it," replied Arthur; "and I must
have it done directly, or I shall not be ready
to go out with papa."
One of the servants passing at that mo-
ment, Arthur called out, "Susan, run and
see if Miss Rosa is up in the play-room,
Rosa is writing her theme for to-morrow,
I think, Arthur," said his aunt; "and you
should not disturb her, as she is very anxious
that it should be well done because your papa
has given her the subject. Cannot Edith
mend your glove for you ?"
"Oh no," exclaimed Arthur, impatiently,
"it is of no use asking her; she is always so
busy that it makes her cross if I want her to
put a stitch in anything; and she says that
I tear my gloves on purpose. Rosa is the
best, for she never grumbles if it is ever so
bad to mend."
Edith was sitting in the back parlour,
reading a story-book which had been lent to
her. The folding-doors were just open, so
62 nBOA's CHILDHOOD.
that she could not help hearing the conversa-
tion which passed between her brother and
her aunt. The deep blush rose in her cheek,
as she listened to Arthur's comment on her-
self, for she felt that his remarks were too true.
Rosa came in with the needle and silk in
her hand. "0 Arthur, dear, what a large
hole !" she said, as her cousin ran to her with
his glove. "But never mind, I will do it as
well as I can now, so that you may put it
on; and if you will give it to me when you
come back, I will try and mend it better to-
Arthur looked at his aunt and smiled; and
then he waited very patiently while Rosa
repaired the rent in his glove: and he picked
up her scissors for her when they tumbled
down, and said he was sorry to give her so
much trouble. It was Rosa's kindness which
made him so gentle and well-behaved. In a
few minutes the glove was finished and drawn
on, and looked "quite respectable," Arthur
"If you would put on your gloves more
slowly," remarked Rosa, in a pleasant tone,
as she fastened the button for him, "they
would not be so easily torn or spoiled. Do
not pull them by the wrist, but press down
the fingers so:" and Rosa suited her actions
to her word, and looked up at her cousin.
"Well, I will try," said Arthur, good-
humouredly, as he gave her a kiss, and a
ROSA'S CHILDHOOD. 68
heart "thank you;" and then hastened to
join his father, who was waiting for him at
the hall door.
Edith sat silent and alone for some time
after Arthur had left. She was comparing
her own conduct with her cousin's, and she
was ashamed at the comparison. It was not
pleasing to feel that Rosa was, in this instance
at least, so greatly her superior; for although
there was no rivalry between the two girls,
Edith had always fancied that she was really
more amiable than her cousin. This idea
had not excited any feelings of pride or con-
ceit in her mind, for it always seemed to her
a matter of course that she should be more
advanced in everything than the little careless,
laughter-loving Rosa; and now she found
herself far surpassed by her cousin. Edith
was also pained by the thought that her
selfish conduct was unpleasing to God, and
unlike the example of her Saviour; and she
humbly resolved to think less about herself
in future, and to study more to make others
Rosa returned to her theme with a glad
step. The consciousness that we have done
a kind action for another always makes us
feel happy and light-hearted. Rosa felt in-
clined, when Susan came to call her, to say
that she could not go just then to mend
Arthur's glove, and that he ought to have
thought of it before, if he wished her to do it;
64 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
but she checked the words before they rose
to her lips, and got up to look for some black
silk. She knew that Arthur was rather
careless; but then she also knew that to scold
him for tearing his glove, or to refuse to
mend it, or even to do it in an ungracious
manner, was not the way to make him more
careful another time. Besides, she thought
he perhaps could not help it; the best gloves
will wear out sometimes; and then how un-
kind it would be to prevent his having a
pleasant walk, or at all events to shorten it,
because she wished to finish her theme.
Happy Rosa! for those who try to make
others happy are sure to be happy them-
selves. She got up a quarter of an hour
earlier than usual in the morning, it is true;
but who would not willingly rise a little sooner
to gain the peaceful conscience and cheerful
mind that Rosa had?
Aunt Lucy closed her book for a few
minutes when the children left the room, and
retraced with mingled pleasure and thankful-
ness the gradual improvement which for
some time past had marked Rosa's conduct.
She was evidently striving to be more patient
and self-denying: the hastiness of her temper
seemed a source of much trouble to her, and,
although not yet subdued, was certainly
struggled against. Was Rosa influenced in
her attempts at self-conquest by right and
efficient motives? Aunt Lucy hoped so;
she hoped that Rosa, instead of yielding to a
naturally impulsive disposition, had begun to
act from principle. No one can tell, except
from personal experience, the joy which is
derived from seeing those whom we love
trying to please, not themselves, but God;
and it is a happy moment for any child, when
the desire to obey God and imitate the
example of Christ is really implanted in the
66 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
"Now,Edith,it is too dark to see any longer,"
said Rosa, one afternoon, as she playfully
closed the book which her cousin was study-
ing; so let us draw close round the fire and
have a nice chat."
"A nice chat!" exclaimed Arthur, who
heard the last words as he was entering the
room. Why, Rosa, surely you need not sit
down on purpose to talk, for you do little
else all day.
From morning till night, it was Rosa's delight
To chatter and talk without stopping;
There was not a day but she rattled away
Like water for ever a-dropping.'"
"0 Arthur! I am quite tired of hearing
those foolish lines: do get something fresh,"
said Rosa; "or if you must repeat them,
say 'Arthur' instead of Rosa, and then you
will be right."
"No, no, I should be wrong then--should
I not, Edith ? Does not Rosa talk more than
I do ?"
Edith laughingly declined answering his
appeal. It is too difficult a point to decide
just now, Arthur: besides, as I cannot please
ROSA'S CHILDHOOD. 67
you both, it is the wisest plan not to satisfy
Very cautious, Edith, as you always are,"
said Arthur, edging his way in between his
sister and cousin; "but I know what you
"And so do I," observed Rosa.
Girls are always said to talk more than
boys, you know," continued Arthur, with a
mischievous glance at his cousin.
"It is a very untrue saying, tben,"answered
Rosa; "and was no doubt invented by some
talkative boy who was ashamed of his own
Arthur smiled. "Well now, Rosa, does
not aunt Lucy talk a great deal more than
papa does ?"
Yes, at home," replied Rosa, because
uncle is almost always out; but he is really
the greatest talker, for he has to chatter all
day long to his patients. Poor uncle! he
came in just now, looking so tired; and he
had hardly put on his slippers before there
was a loud ring at the door, and he was
obliged to set off directly to see Mrs. Thom-
son's little baby, for it was thought to be
dying. Oh, I should not like to be a
Nor I," responded Edith, who had a great
aversion to scenes of illness and suffering.
"I shall be a doctor when I am old enough,"
said Arthur, decidedly; for Arthur's highest
68 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
ambition was to resemble his papa in every-
thing. "It would be very easy to write a
few prescriptions, and to drive out once or
twice a day in my carriage."
"Your carriage!" repeated Rosa, laugh-
ing. Only fancy Arthur riding in his car-
"Why not?" said Arthur. "I should
study very hard, of course, that I might be
clever, like papa; and then I should be sure
to get on well.
But how would you like to be called up
in the middle of the night ?" said Edith.
"Oh, that is nothing when a person is
used to it," replied her brother; besides,
one must meet with something disagreeable
in whatever we do."
I am glad you are so contented, Arthur,"
remarked Edith. "I could never make up
my mind to be roused out of a comfortable
sleep at any hour in the night."
"Now, I will tell you how I should like
to live when I am grown up," said Rosa.
"In the first place, I would have a beautiful
house with large gardens, and a conservatory,
like sir Edward Woodford's; and I should
keep a great many servants, and "
"A carriage ?" inquired Arthur, playfully.
"Oh yes, a carriage would be quite neces-
sary for me," said Rosa, archly; and I must
have a nice little pony, too. I should want
as much money as I could spend, because
there would always be something to buy;
books, or ornaments, or new dresses, or pre-
sents for my friends. And then I must see
that all the poor people had plenty of work
to do; and I should build those new school-
rooms that Mr. Anderson was talking to
"I hope Mr. Anderson will get his new
school-rooms built before then," interrupted
Arthur, "or else the old ones will be quite
Rosa laughed at her own inconsiderate-
ness. "Well, Arthur dear," she continued,
"you and Edith should have everything you
could wish for; and we would all live to-
gether, and be so happy. Oh, how delightful
it would be!"
"No," said Edith, quietly, it would be
too grand for me. I should not like to be so
rich. I would rather live in a little cottage,
with jessamine clustering on the wall, and a
flower-garden in front. I should not care
about grand furniture, but I should like a
piano, and plenty of books; and one little
servant would be quite enough to wait upon
me. I do not want to be rich; rich people
are so proud and selfish."
And poor people are discontented and
envious," said Rosa; they are always com-
plaining because they are not so well off as
their neighbours. I think mine is the best
70 ROBA'S CHILDHOOD.
"But I did not intend to be so very poor,
Aunt Lucy came into the room just at
that moment, and Rosa eagerly asked for her
opinion. "We have been fancying," she
said, "what we should like to be when we
are grown up. Edith thinks that it is best
to be poor, and I think that it is best to be
rich. Now, do you think that poor people
are the happiest, aunt ?"
"I do not think, dear, that any one's
happiness depends either upon their having
a little money or a great deal. It is what we
are, more than what we have, which makes
us happy. A person with wrong feelings
and principles would be uncomfortable in a
palace, and dissatisfied in a cottage."
"Well, in that case," said Rosa, "I may
as well wish to be rich as to be poor-may I
not, aunt ?-for I should stand quite as much
chance of being happy as Edith."
"Would it not be best to give up wishing
altogether ?" said aunt Lucy. "Our rank in
life is not an affair of chance, dear Rosa; it is
rightly and wisely arranged for us: and our
concern should be, to do our duty in that
station in which it has pleased God to call us."
But is it wrong to build castles in the
air ?" said Edith. "Rosa was only amusing
herself; she did not expect that what she
fancied would ever come true."
"It is not a good practice to indulge in,
BOSA'S CHILDHOOD. 71
Edith, because it helps to make us discon-
tented with our own lot. When we are in the
habit of wishing for things which we cannot
get, and are frequently dwelling upon the
thoughts of them, it is an easy step from
wishing to murmuring."
"But," said Rosa, hesitating, "if we had
a great deal of money we should be able to
do so much more good; and if that were our
reason for wishing to be rich it would be
right, would it not ?"
But would that be your only reason,
Rosa ? Besides, if God had chosen he could
easily have given you greater opportunities
of usefulness; and we are certain that he is
the best Judge of what is desirable for us.
And you forget, dear Rosa, that we have
plenty of means already, without wishing for
more. When we have done all the good
that we can do in our present circumstances,
it will be time enough to wish them altered."
Rosa was not quite pleased that her bright
dreams should be so entirely swept away;
she was too fond of picturing the future to
herself in glowing colours.
How can I do any good now, aunt ? I
am only a little girl; and I have very little
money to give away."
"Where there is a will, there is a way,"
said aunt Lucy, smiling. "I have not time
now to show you how you may be useful;
but I think, if you try, you will soon find
72 ROSA's CHILDHOOD.
out some way yourself; if not, I will help you
to do so, whenever you feel inclined to begin."
Did Rosa think any more of her aunt's
suggestion--or did she prefer castle-building
to active and self-denying exertion ?
Very early the next morning, just as the
first rays of the sun were peeping through the
curtained window, Rosa was wide awake, and
not only wide awake, but talking to Edith.
"0 Edith, I have thought of such a nice
plan for doing somebody good; it came into
my head directly I awoke; perhaps I had
been dreaming about it. You know that
book of Arthur's which I was reading the
day before yesterday ?"
"Yes," murmured Edith, in a very sleepy
tone of voice.
Well, there was a story in that book of a
young lady who saved up her pocket-money
to pay for a poor little girl's schooling; now,
could we not do that ?"
"Yes," replied her cousin, more indis-
tinctly than before.
"But how much would it cost every week
-threepence, or fourpence ?"
"Yes," answered Edith, in the same un-
Really, Edith," exclaimed Rosa, impa-
tiently, you do not understand what I say.
Are you awake ?"
Oh yes, I am awake," said Edith, rousing
herself a little; "what is it ?"
ROSA'8 CHILDHOOD. 73
"Why," answered Rosa, "I was talking
about saving up our money to put some
little girl to school; only I wanted to know
how much it would cost, because we could
not give all our weekly allowance, you know.
I rather think the girls pay threepence."
No answer came from the unconscious
Edith; she was actually fast asleep! Rosa
turned away, and gave up her attempt at
conversation in despair.
"0 Edith !" she said, in the course of an
hour or two, when they were dressing them-
selves; "you were so sleepy this morning.
Do you recollect my trying to make you
I remember something about three-
pence," answered Edith; "but what you
meant I could not tell. I fancied I was
"And so you were, I think," said Rosa,
laughing; "for I could not get you to un-
derstand what I was saying. It was so tire-
some; and before I had half finished, you
went to sleep.
"Did I ?" replied Edith. "Well, I was
so very sleepy. But I am awake now, so
you can tell it me over again."
Rosa did so very willingly; and Edith was
soon equally interested in the benevolent
"The girls pay threepence a week," said
Edith; "and we could easily spare that: it
74 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
would be only three halfpence for each.
But you have forgotten, Rosa, that we must
first find a little girl who does not go to
"Oh no, I have not forgotten," answered
Rosa, quickly; "I have settled that already,
or nearly so. The other morning, I think it
was Tuesday morning, when I went out with
aunt Lucy, we called in to see a poor woman
whose husband was very ill. The room was
so clean, Edith, only it was terribly small,
and a little child was playing with an old doll
in one corner. Oh, it was such a fright !"
"The child, or the doll?" said Edith.
"Oh, the doll: the child was pretty enough;
it had nice light hair; but it was very shy,
and turned away its head when I spoke to it.
Aunt Lucy asked whether its sister was at
school: but her mother said,' No; her little
girl was gone out to fetch some medicine.
She wished she could send her to school; but
since her husband had been laid up she
really had not been able to manage it, for
every penny was an object to her.'"
"And was her husband any better ?" asked
"Yes, he was getting better," she said,
"but very slowly; and she was afraid he
would not be fit to go to work for a long
time. She seemed such a nice woman; and
her gown, though very old and patched, wa
so clean. Now do you not think she would
be very glad if we were to offer to pay for
her little girl's schooling ?"
"Oh yes," said Edith, "there can be no
doubt of that; unless she wants her to stay
at home now that her father is ill."
"Well, we must ask aunt Lucy," said
Rosa; she will know best."
During breakfast-time Rosa unfolded her
little project. Edith whispered to her that she
had better wait until they were alone with aunt
Lucy; but Rosa was too impatient for aunt
Lucy's opinion, to follow her cousin's advice.
Aunt Lucy quite approved of their kind
intention-we say their, for Rosa made no
distinction between Edith and herself: she
did not assume to herself, as some little girls
would have done, the credit of having first
thought of the proposal.
Aunt Lucy promised to call that morning
on Mrs. Gray-for Rosa was so eager to
have it settled-and inquire whether she
would be willing to send her little girl to
school, provided the weekly sum were paid
for her. "Only, Rosa," she added, "Edith
and you must be quite sure that you really
wish to undertake this: I should wish you,
if you once begin, to go on with it."
Edith and Rosa assured their aunt that
they fully intended to do so.
"Little girls are very changeable some-
times," said Dr. Wilson, looking up from his
newspaper, with a significant smile at Rosa.
76 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
"What do mean, uncle ?" said Rosa.
"I was only thinking of a certain half-
crown which was carefully laid aside one
evening for the Missionary Society, and which
went to buy a young lady's smelling-bottle
the next morning."
"0 uncle," said Rosa, blushing, you
must not mention that again, because I have
begun to save up another half-crown for the
Missionary Society. I am not so changeable
now as I used to be; indeed I am not."
Well, my love, I am always glad to hear
of improvement," replied Dr. Wilson, smil-
ing; and I am sure you will feel pleased if
Mrs. Gray's little girl should learn to read,
through your help and Edith's: it is so
pleasant to be the means of assisting others
to acquire useful knowledge."
Aunt Lucy did not forget her promise to
call on the little girl's mother; indeed, it
was hardly possible that she could forget,
while Rosa was beside her. She found Mrs.
Gray not only willing, but thankful to accept
the offer which was made.
I shall be very glad for Alice to go,
ma'am; for she is just the age now to take
to her books, and I cannot teach her myself,
for I am no scholar. She will be so pleased
when I tell her of it; for she sadly wants to
learn to read, poor child. I am sure I am
very much obliged to the young ladies and
aOSA'8 CHILDHOOD. 77
Aunt Lucy communicated the result of
her visit to Edith and Rosa, on her return;
and told them that she had desired Alice to
call on Saturday for a Testament and a
spelling-book, which she would give her.
"Alice! is her name Alice?" said Rosa.
"It is very pretty."
"And shall we not make her a workbag,
and a pincushion, and a needlebook ?" said
Oh yes," replied Rosa, eagerly; I have
a nice piece of stuff up-stairs that will make
a good strong bag for her." Rosa ran and
brought it; and Edith and herself were soon
busily engaged with their work.
The little presents were quite ready for
Alice when she came on Saturday; and the
bright looks of the child expressed her thanks
more eloquently than her words, for she was
too timid to say much before strangers. She
dropped a very low courtsey when she entered
the parlour--"a proper charity-school girl's
bob," Arthur said, afterwards-and hardly
ventured to look around her. She had never
been in so grand a room before, and her
mother had charged her to be sure to behave
herself well; so Alice stood perfectly still, and
answered little more than Yes, ma'am," to
every question that was put to her.
Rosa was disappointed to find her so
silent. "I wish," she said, as the little girl
made her ast courtsey, and departed with her
78 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
treasures, "that Alice was not so shy; she
need not have been afraid of us, I am sure."
But we were strangers to her," remarked
Edith; "and it was enough to make her feel
shy to know that we were all looking at her,
and listening to what she said: she will talk
fast enough when she gets home, I dare say."
Edith was right; Alice's reserve vanished
when she got outside the house: and she
had so full a description of her visit to give
to her mother, that Mrs. Gray had not time
to hear it all at once; and how often Alice
looked at her workbag and its contents, be-
fore she went to bed that evening, it would
be difficult to say.
Rosa would have been quite satisfied if
she could have known how eagerly Alice
looked forward to Monday morning; or if
she could have witnessed the alacrity with
which the new little pupil set off to her
school, ten minutes before the clock struck
Alice soon improved in her reading and
working. She was not a clever child, but
she applied herself diligently and constantly
to her tasks; and her progress, if not rapid,
was steady. She came very frequently to
see Edith and Rosa, that they might observe
how she got on, and give her their little re-
wards for industry and good behaviour.
Aunt Lucy was glad to see the interest
which they manifested in Alice; forshe knew
ROSA'S CHILDHOOD. 79
that the best way of counteracting the natural
selfishness of our nature is to employ our-
selves in direct acts of sympathy and bene-
volence. The charge which Edith and Rosa
took of Alice's education had also a bene-
ficial effect upon their own studies; for they
could not impress upon her the advantage
of acquiring habits of attention, diligence,
and perseverance, without striving to prac-
tise them themselves. And Rosa found that
trying to be useful was far more beneficial,
both to herself and others, than vague and
idle dreaming about the future.
80 ROBA'8 CHILDHOOD.
AUNT Lucy was going to arrange some fresh
flowers in a beautiful china vase which stood
on the drawing-room table, when she dis-
covered to her surprise and regret that the
vase was broken in two, and the faded roses
and tulips scattered around it. She was very
sorry that this accident had occurred; not for
the value of the article, but because it was a
present from an early and much-esteemed
friend whom she had not seen for some
"Mary, do you know how this vase was
No, ma'am," said Mary, who came at the
the summons of her mistress; "I found it
broken when I came in to dust the room this
morning, and I left it just as it is for you to
see. I cannot tell who can have done it,
"It is very strange," said aunt Lucy,
"Ido not think any one has been in the
room to-day but Miss Rosa," continued
Mary; "and I am sure she would have men-
tioned it directly, if she had done it."
Aunt Lucy thought so too, for Rosa was
generally very frank and open. Yet some one
must have broken the vase; and Rosa had
certainly been in the room, for her thimble
peeped out from under one of the tulip-leaves:
she had forgotten to take it with her when
she went away. What trifling things some-
times lead to unexpected discoveries! But
aunt Lucy was not sure that Rosa was the
author of this accident. The circumstance of
the thimble having been left there looked
rather suspicious, certainly; yet it was not a
sufficient proof: we must not condemn others
until we are quite certain that they are de-
serving of blame.
Aunt Lucy took the thimble in her hand,
and went across the lawn to the summer-
house, where the children were sitting by
Here is your thimble, Rosa."
Oh thank you, aunt," said Rosa: what
a search I have had after it; and I have been
obliged to put away my needlework because
I could not find it."
Rosa was not so very sorry that her thim-
ble was lost," remarked Arthur, playfully.
"Oh, I certainly did not cry about it,"
replied Rosa, laughing; "and I could spare
it very well for a week, if that were all. I do
not like plain needlework; but I am more
patient with it than I used to be."
Is that really true, aunt Lucy ?" inquired
Arthur, trying to look very grave.
a Oh yes, indeed it is," continued Rosa,
82 ROSA'8 CHILDHOOD.
merrily; for I remember I used to wish that
pocket handkerchiefs grew ready-hemmed
upon the trees; and I never wish that now:
so there is some improvement."
Aunt Lucy smiled.
But where did you meet with my thim-
It was on the drawing-room table, Rosa:
I suppose you went in there this morning,"
replied aunt Lucy, steadily.
Rosa coloured at this question, and
glanced at Arthur. "Yes, I went in to"
-she hesitated-" to take-to look at a
Aunt Lucy was sorry to perceive Rosa's
hesitation; it rather confirmed her sus-
"And did you break the china vase, Rosa ?"
"No, aunt," answered Rosa, in a tone of
surprise. "Is it broken, then ?"
Yes; I found it so just now, when I was
going to fill it with fresh flowers."
"Oh, how sorry I am!" exclaimed Edith;
"we have had it so long. Who can have
It was not broken when I saw it," said
Rosa, "because I noticed how withered the
flowers looked, especially my favourite white
"And you are sure you did not upset it as
you turned away?" remarked aunt Lucy.
Oh yes, quite sure," said Rosa.
Aunt Lucy was satisfied; she did not say,
"But there has been no one in the drawing-
room this morning, Rosa, besides you and
Mary:" or, "Why did you blush when I
asked you about it?" or, "I must wait and
see whether you have spoken the truth."
No; Rosa had simply affirmed that she had
not broken the vase, and her word was suffi-
cient: aunt Lucy made no further inquiry.
Her plan with the children-and a very suc-
cessful one she had always found it-was to
believe implicitly what they said. The im-
portance and the loveliness of truth were early
impressed upon their minds; and they were
taught to understand and to act upon those
striking words, "Thou God seest me." But,
unless they were detected in a falsehood, their
word was never doubted; their assertions
were never disputed. The children knew
and felt this; and the just confidence which
was thus reposed in them deepened their
reverence and regard for truth.
But how was the china vase broken? Ah,
you are curious to find out whether Rosa
was really innocent, are you not?
The day passed away, and no one came
forward and owned having done it; it seemed
likely to prove one of those affairs which are
always involved in mystery.
Dr. Wilson returned home as usual about
five o'clock; and as he was sitting at dinner,
he looked round with a half-smile, and in-
84 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
quired whether aunt Lucy's china vase had
not met with an accident.
"0 uncle, how could you tell ?" exclaimed
Rosa, in evident astonishment.
"Did you see any one break it?" said
"Yes, Arthur, most certainly I did," replied
Dr. Wilson, much amused at the surprise
which his unexpected announcement occa-
sioned. I came in very hastily for a book
which I left there last evening; my foot
stumbled; and in trying to save myself from
a fall by catching hold of the table, I knocked
over the vase, and unfortunately broke it. I
had not a minute to lose, as I had made an
important engagement for this morning, so I
did not stay to mention the accident. I hope
no one has been blamed for my misfortune;
not even poor 'pussy,' who generally has
such things laid to her charge.
"No," said aunt Lucy, smiling, "the blame
has not rested anywhere, because we could
not ascertain who had done it: we certainly
never thought of you."
"No indeed, uncle," said Rosa; "you
always seem so very quiet and careful that I
did not think you could break anything."
Dr. Wilson laughed at Rosa's exalted opi-
nion of his carefulness; and he was about to
reply, when the servant entered, bringing in a
pretty china vase which had just arrived for
ROBA'S CHILDHOOD. 85
Aunt Lucy looked perplexed, for a moment;
but it was only for a moment, for she quickly
understood whose gift it was.
"It is some slight compensation for your
loss," said Dr.Wilson, pleasantly, to his sister;
"and as Rosa gives me such a good character
for the past, I must endeavour to keep it for
The new vase was much admired. Dr.
Wilson had seen it as he crossed over the
road to the house of one of his patients; and
its similarity to the broken one had induced
him to purchase it at once, and order it to be
sent home. Busy as he was, and much
pressed for time, he was never inattentive to
the slightest thing which could impart plea-
sure to another: he knew that trifles often
furnish the surest proofs of affection.
But why did Rosa blush and hesitate when
aunt Lucy referred to her having been in the
drawing-room? Do you wish to know? It
is a secret; but as Arthur has discovered it,
you may hear it too. Arthur had complained
the previous evening of his shabby pen-wiper;
and Rosa, who happened to be up earlier than
usual in the morning, had manufactured a
new one for him out of some dark pieces of
cloth. He had left his writing-book in the
drawing-room when he went to bed; so Rosa
had gone in, quite unperceived as she thought,
and exchanged the pen-wipers, that Arthur
might have a pleasant surprise when he again
86 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
wanted to use one. And Arthur had a plea-
sant surprise, for this sudden fulfilment of
his wishes seemed to him almost like magic;
and the quietness with which it was effected
made it all the more gratifying. How easy
it is to make others happy!
This was, then, the reason of Rosa's reluc-
tance to answer her aunt's simple question;
she did not wish to reveal her little secret.
It was no proof, you see, that she had broken
the vase, although even aunt Lucy at first
feared that it was. Never condemn any one,
dear reader, merely because appearances seem
against them; if you do, you will often treat
others with great injustice. Wait until you
have positive proof that your suspicions are
right before you mention them. "Charity
thinketh no evil; charity hopeth all things."
Children are very prone to forget this; they
frequently judge hastily and harshly of an-
other's conduct, when perhaps a little time
and patience would show them that their
opinion was incorrect. We should be gentle
and hopeful in the remarks which we make
about our fellow-creatures: we should be dis-
trustful of ourselves, and very watchful over
our own actions.
SavERALweeks passed away,and the weather
grew very cold. Rosa noticed how thin and
scanty little Alice's dress was for such a severe
season; and she consulted with Edith about
the possibility of procuring her a warm frock
and cloak. Her mother was not likely to be
able to purchase them for her, for John Gray
was still weak and poorly; and the little which
he was able to earn did not go far in providing
for his family. Edith and Rosa thought that
their united savings would just buy the re-
quired articles of clothing, and they resolved
to devote their money to that purpose.
It happened that the day after their con-
versation on this subject Rosa saw in a
shop-window a workbox, which was exactly
what she fancied. Her own was very shabby;
indeed it was so small, and so much the worse
for wear, that Rosa had for some time intended
to transfer it to Alice when she could meet
with another for herself. Now this one
which was marked for sale in the window
was, as Rosa said, the very thing she wanted;
and she was busily describing it to aunt Lucy,
and declaring her intention of purchasing it
soon, when Edith's hasty exclamation inter-
rupted her remarks-
88 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
0 Rosa, have you forgotten Alice's new
frock and cloak?"
Rosa was rather disconcerted by this un-
thought-of hinderance to her intended pur-
chase, and she scarcely felt willing to relin-
quish the wished-for object.
"I am not obliged to spend my money on
Alice," she said; "we have not promised to
give her anything."
"No, we certainly have not promised to
buy her a new frock," answered Edith, in a
tone of surprise; but I thought we agreed
to do so yesterday."
Yes," said Rosa, colouring slightly, "but
we did not fix any particular time; and I do
not see why Alice cannot wait as well as I
can: it is very hard if I am never to buy any-
thing for myself."
"0 Rosa," replied her cousin, earnestly,
"the workbox is not really necessary; you
can do without it at present; but Alice is
sadly in want of some warm things: she
looked so cold when I met her the other day."
Rosa's own heart told her that Edith was
right, but she was reluctant to acknowledge
it; she did not like to feel, as it were, com-
pelled to act according to Edith's advice, so
she answered somewhat pettishly, "Surely I
may do as I like about it; Alice cannot ex-
pect that because we pay for her schooling
we are to find her a new frock when she
ROIA'I CHILDHOOD. 89
Edith made no reply, for she was called
away by Arthur to find a drawing pencil
which he had lent her, and which she had
neglected to return: and aunt Lucy did not
choose to say anything about the workbox to
Rosa; she wished it to be left entirely to her
own decision. Rosa's pocket-money was
given to her to spend in any way that she
pleased; and although the duty of caring for
others had been clearly pointed out to her,
and the loveliness of an unselfish spirit, espe-
cially as it was exemplified in the conduct of
her Saviour, had been frequently brought
before her view, yet she had never been re-
quired to devote any portion of her money to
charitable purposes. Aunt Lucy desired that
the simple offerings of the children should be
free-will offerings; and she strove, with God's
blessing, to induce that right state of feeling
in reference to those around them which
would naturally lead to the performance of
kind and benevolent deeds. Her effort'had
hitherto been successful, for both Rosa and
her cousins were generally anxious to con-
tribute their mite when any appeal was made
for the poor and needy; and many little
sacrifices had been cheerfully borne by them,
that they might have the opportunity of
lending their aid.
Rosa pursued her needlework in silence
while Edith was absent, for her thoughts still
dwelt upon the pretty workbox. It seemed
90 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
to her almost unreasonable that Edith should
expect her to prefer Alice's comfort before
her own gratification; and as she glanced at
the long-used workbox by her side, and con-
trasted it with the tempting one in the shop-
window, she half-persuaded herself that the
purchase of the latter was a necessary ex-
penditure. But better thoughts than these
soon arose in her mind, and happy was it for
Rosa that she did not try to banish them.
She remembered that the most trifling actions
of her life were to be regulated, not by her
own inclinations, but by the will and example
of her Saviour. Rosa was taught to guide
her conduct by this simple but beautiful rule;
and angry tempers were often checked, and
wrong desires subdued, by the thought,
"Would Christ have done this?" or, "Will
he be pleased if I say that ?"
A little quiet reflection showed Rosa that,
in the present instance, her own wishes ought
to yield to Alice's wants; for it would be
unkind and selfish to let Alice suffer from
the cold a few weeks longer, in order that the
workbox might be immediately obtained.
Rosa felt ashamed that she had even hesitated
between Alice and herself; and when Edith
returned to the parlour, she lost no time in
practically contradicting the selfish arguments
which she had so lately used in her conver-
sation with her cousin.
"Will you go with us, dear aunt," she
ROSA'S CHILDHOOD. 91
said, modestly, "as soon as you can spare
time, and help us to choose the materials for
Alice's cloak and frock ?"
Edith looked rather surprised. "Then
you will give up the workbox at present,
Oh yes," said Rosa, frankly, "I can easily
do without it a little longer, and Alice must
not wait for her things until the winter is
Aunt Lucy readily assented to Rosa's re-
quest that she would accompany them to the
draper's; and as there was nothing to prevent
their going at once, she agreed to do so.
The two girls soon put on their bonnets
and shawls, and went with aunt Lucy on
their pleasant errand; and Rosa passed by
the gay window of the toy-shop without
casting one regretful look at the workbox.
An approving conscience was a sufficient
compensation for her self-denial; and Rosa
would not have parted with her glad and
happy feelings for the most costly workbox
which could have been offered to her. Some
nice dark plaid, and a pair of warm gloves,
were selected for Alice; and when the parcel
was sent home, Edith and Rosa asked
aunt Lucy to let them help to make up the
"We can get one of Alice's old frocks
for a pattern," said Rosa, eagerly; "and if
you would cut it out for us, aunt, I am
92 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
sure we could manage to put it together.
I can do all the hemming, and run the
seams, and Edith will take the most difficult
Aunt Lucy gave her permission, and her
assistance, very willingly. The servant was
sent for Alice's Sunday frock as a pattern;
and the new one was cut out, and partly fixed
before tea-time. Edith and Rosa worked
very diligently all the evening. Yes, even
Rosa, who disliked needlework more than any
of her daily tasks, stitched away so quickly
and so cheerfully that aunt Lucy was rather
surprised at her industry, and Arthur could
not restrain his astonishment.
"Why, Rosa," he exclaimed, "your fingers
must positively ache by this time; and yet
you go on stitch, stitch, stitch, without
drawing one long sigh over your work, or
even asking what o'clock it is. What good
fairy has touched you with her wand to-nght,
and changed you into another Edith ?"
"Oh, Alice is my fairy," answered Rosa,
laughing; "at least, it is the thought of her
which makes me so busy just now. I do so
want to see how she will look in her new
frock, that I have scarcely patience to wait
until it is done."
"It is so nice to have a pleasant motive
for one's work," said Edith, looking towards
aunt Lucy; "I can always get on so much
faster when I have a good .end in view."
BOSA'S CHILDHOOD. 93
"A good end I" said Arthur; "have you
not always a good end in view ?"
"Sometimes I work only for my own
amusement," replied Edith; "and that is not
wrong; but still I like work best when I am
making something that will be really useful
to another person. Now Alice wants this
frock to keep her warm this cold weather, so
that I have a pleasant object before me in
helping to do it."
"It is strange, aunt, is it not," said Rosa,
"that everybody does not try to be kind to
the poor; because a great deal may be done
without much trouble or expense ?"
"Yes, my dear Rosa; but many persons
are so engrossed with their own concerns
that they rarely think about the wants of
their fellow-creatures. They live from day
to day without making any effort to relieve
the poverty and the misery which surround
them-not so much from an unwillingness to
lend their aid, as from a want of thoughtful-
ness and consideration."
"Oh, that reminds me of a piece of
poetry which I found in an old magazine
the other day," said Arthur; "shall I read it
"Yes do, Arthur," replied Rosa, who
generally gave an answer before any one else
had time to do so; "what is it called ?"
"The Lady's Dream."
"The Lady's Dream! what a nice title !"
94 ROSA'B CHILDHOOD.
"Of the hearts that daily break,
Of the tears that daily fall,
Of the many, many troubles of life
That grieve this earthly ball-
Disease and hunger, and pain and want-
But now I dreamt of them all.
"For the blind and the cripple were there,
And the babe that pined for bread;
And the houseless man; and the widow poor,
Who begged to bury the dead;
The naked, alas I that I might have clad,
The famish'd I might have fed I
"The sorrow I might have soothed,
And the unregarded tears,
For many a thronging shape was there
From long-forgotten years;
Ay, even the poor rejected Moor
Who raised my childish fears.
Each pleading look that long ago
I scann'd with a heedless eye,
Each face was gazing as plainly there
As when I pas'd it by:
Woe, woe for me if the past should be
Thus present when I die I
"Alas I have walked through life
Too heedless where I trod-
Nay, helping to trample my fellow-man,
And fill the burial sod;
Forgetting that even the sparrow's fall
Is not unmark'd of God.
"I drank the richest draught.,
And ate whatever is good-
Fish and flesh and fowl and fruit
Supplied my hungry mood;
But I never remembered the wretched ones
That starve for want of food.
"I dreu'd as the noble dress,
In cloth of silver and gold,
With silk and satin and costly furs
In many an ample fold;
But I never remembered the naked limbs
That froe with the winter's cold I
ROSA'S CHILDHOOD. 95
"The wounds I might have heul'd I
The human sorrow and smart I
And yet it never was in my soul
To play so Ull a put:
But evil is wrought by want of thought,
As well u want of heart."-
"She clssp'd her fervent hands
And the tears began to stream,
Large and bitter and fast they fell,
Remorse wu so extreme:
And yet, oh yet, that many a dame
Would dream the Lady's Dream I"
96 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
RoSA was very anxious that Alice's frock
should be finished within the week, because
Friday was Rosa's birthday, and Alice was to
come in the afternoon and have some tea,
and the new frock was to be worn in honour
of the occasion. Alice's mother had the cloak
to make; so both were to be ready for Sunday.
It was getting dusk on Thursday, when a
joyful exclamation from Rosa announced the
completion of the frock. It is quite finished
now," she said, as she held it up for the
inspection of Edith and Arthur. "How glad
I am! Does it not look nice ? I am quite
charmed with it."
Edith warmly echoed Rosa's remarks.
I think, young ladies," remarked Arthur,
smiling, "that you might have waited to hear
what my opinion was first: 'self-praise,' as
the old proverb says,'is no recommendation.'"
"But, Arthur," said Rosa, "we were not-"
Rosa's playful self-defence was interrupted
by the entrance of aunt Lucy and a gentle-
man with a travelling cloak on his arm. It
was Mr. Evelyn. The indistinctness of the
light, and the unexpectedness of his appear-
ance, prevented his being immediately recog-
ROSA'S CHILDHOOD. 97
nised; but after a moment's hesitation Rosa
sprang forward, and was clasped in the fond
embrace of her affectionate parent.
"O papa! I am so glad, so very glad, you
are come; but why did not you send me a
"Because it was very uncertain whether I
should be able to leave home. I could not
decide about coming until last evening; so I
did not wish to raise your hopes merely to
"Oh, I should have been disappointed
indeed, if we had expected you to-day and
you had not come," said Rosa.
It is quite as well that you did not expect
to see uncle," remarked Arthur, "for you
would not have been able to think of anything
else all the week; and then"-pointing to
the plaid frock which had been hastily flung
upon a chair-" poor Edith must have done
all the needlework."
The history of Alice's frock followed; and
Mr. Evelyn's approval of the purchase, and
his surprise at the cleverness of the young
dressmakers, were very gratifying to Edith
and Rosa. "And Alice is to wear it to-
morrow, because to-morrow is my birthday,"
said Rosa, as she folded up the frock. "You
will see Alice to-morrow, papa; she is coming
to have some tea here."
How rapidly and how pleasantly the even-
ing passed away! Rosa had so much to
98 ROSA'S CHILDHOOD.
communicate, and so many inquiries to make,
that bed-time came, as it generally does on
such occasions, much too quickly.
Rosa awoke very early the next morning,
and she lay quite still for a long time, thinking
over the happy circumstances which marked
her entrance upon another year. She had a
pleasant home; a dear father who fondly
loved her; kind friends who strove to make
her happy, and to prepare her, not only for
this world, but for a better; and many other
blessings which endear life. Rosa felt grate-
ful to her heavenly Father for these tokens
of his care and love; and her silent thanks-
giving was not unaccepted by Him to whom
all hearts are open, and all desires are known.
But Rosa had sad thoughts as well as bright
ones just then. She compared her own con-
duct during the past twelve months with the
goodness of God towards her, and the contrast
was humbling. How forgetful she had been
of his love! how inconstant in her endeavours
to please him! how frequent her acts of dis-
obedience! The review was a painful one
to Rosa's tender conscience; but it led her
to look to her Saviour, and to ask for forgive-
ness through him, and to seek more earnestly
for the aid of the Holy Spirit.
Rosa was a thoughtful child, although few
who remarked her light-hearted gaiety and
her playful simplicity would have supposed
so; but we cannot always judge from external
appearances. She was very reserved on some
points, notwithstanding the general openness
of her disposition; so that even aunt Lucy
was scarcely aware of her depth of feeling
and seriousness of purpose. But it is acting,
not talking, which is a proof of our religion;
and the gradual improvement of Rosa's temper
and habits, and her increased love for the
word and the house of God, gave her affec-
tionate relatives reason to believe that she
was steadily progressing in the right way.
"Even a child is known by his doings."
Many were the kind wishes which Rosa
received when she entered the breakfast-
room; and the healthful glow on her cheek,
and the happy expression of her countenance,
excited her father's grateful feelings. But
kind wishes were not the only proof that her
birthday was remembered. Each had some
little gift to offer as a token of their love:
there was a book from Dr.Wilson; a blotting-
case from Arthur; an elegant pencil-case from
aunt Lucy; and a pretty bag from Edith.
And was there no present from Mr. Evelyn?
Had he forgotten his little girl ? Patience,
dear reader; you will know all presently. A
square parcel, which bore a very suspicious
resemblance to a large box, was placed beside
Rosa's cup and saucer; it was addressed to
"Rosa Evelyn, from her very affectionate
father." Rosa eagerly untied the string and
opened the paper, and found herself the