Front Cover
 Front Matter
 Half Title
 Title Page
 Table of Contents
 List of Illustrations
 The scarlet herring
 The true history of the five little...
 Aunt Apple-tree
 The golden jujube
 The gay umbrella
 The strange adventures of mother...
 Back Cover

Group Title: scarlet herring
Title: The scarlet herring
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00087562/00001
 Material Information
Title: The scarlet herring and other stories
Physical Description: xii, 252, 4 p. : ill. ; 21 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Parry, Edward Abbott, 1863-1943
Rusden, Athelstan D ( Illustrator )
Smith, Elder, and Co ( Publisher )
Sherratt & Hughes ( Publisher )
Ballantyne, Hanson and Co ( Printer )
Ballantyne Press ( Printer )
Publisher: Smith, Elder & Co.
Sherratt & Hughes
Place of Publication: London
Manufacturer: Ballantyne, Hanson & Co. ; Ballantyne Press
Publication Date: 1899
Subject: Children's stories   ( lcsh )
Children's stories -- 1899   ( lcsh )
Fantasy literature -- 1899   ( rbgenr )
Publishers' advertisements -- 1899   ( rbgenr )
Bldn -- 1899
Genre: Children's stories
Fantasy literature   ( rbgenr )
Publishers' advertisements   ( rbgenr )
novel   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage: England -- London
England -- Manchester
Statement of Responsibility: by Edward Abbott Parry ; with illustrations by Athelstan D. Rusden.
General Note: Publisher's advertisements follow text.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00087562
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: aleph - 002235753
notis - ALH6216
oclc - 00657116

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Page i
        Page ii
    Front Matter
        Page iii
    Half Title
        Page iv
        Page v
    Title Page
        Page vi
        Page vii
        Page viii
    Table of Contents
        Page ix
        Page x
    List of Illustrations
        Page xi
        Page xii
    The scarlet herring
        Page 1
        Page 2
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
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        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
        Page 34
        Page 35
        Page 36
    The true history of the five little pigs
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 39
        Page 40
        Page 41
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        Page 58
    Aunt Apple-tree
        Page 59
        Page 60
        Page 61
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    The golden jujube
        Page 73
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    The gay umbrella
        Page 167
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    The strange adventures of mother and pater
        Page 201
        Page 202
        Page 203
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    Back Cover
        Page 258
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        Page 260
Full Text

The Scarlet Herring
And other Stories

*-: :


Page 32.




The Scarlet Herring

And other


His Honour Judge
Edward Abbott Parry
Author of Katawampus: Its Treatment and Cure,"
"Butterscotia," "The First Book of Krab."

With Illustrations by Athelstan D. Rusden


At the Ballantyne Press

By special request of OLGA, MOLLY,
KATE, and TOMAKIN, this volume is
dedicated to









List of Illustrations

Gwenlliam rows to Harlech Castle .

Dived into the waves .

The Ballad of Mary Jane I .


Kan and the Fair Angharad rode along t

Beautiful Maidens

The Fishing .

Gwenlliam and the Scarlet Herring.

The Swineherd .

He offers the Pigs chocolates

"Find A"

The Butcher chases Scamp

Aunt Apple-Tree.

Tomakin's Ship

The sentry was whirled away

Tomakin's vessel leaves for Rombolia

Tomakin sees the Golden Jujube

The Captain's Gig .

The Wolf walked up the great hall with Lady

S 10



he lines of the







S 6




S 127

S 3
Jane Grey I 3


List of Illustrations

Tomakin and the Talking Robin

The Gay Umbrella

Puck and his friends

The Judge's Adventure

Puck goes home .

Silen and the Mermaids

Pater finds Dick

Cupid upon a Fawn

Cupid and Peona

The Chariot of Venus .

. 158

S. 68

1. 71


S 210


S 234

S 249


Give me a head
Of brilliant red,
As scarlet as a parrot's,
I will not smack
My best friend back,
Though he should whisper Carrots."
Remembering kings
Thought such-like things
Not worthy of undue fuss,
And took the name
As added fame,
Like William surnamed Rufus.
Pater's Book of Rhymes.


Of the Scarlet Herring's first dip in the Ocean,
and why he took it

tell them again and again and love them the
more every time they hear them. The oldest,
most true, and most beautiful stories in the world come
from the mountains and shores of wild Wales. Thus it

The Scarlet Herring

was that sitting on the beach of Mocras Island I placed
a little pink cowry shell to my left ear, and it began to
move its crinkled lips and whisper to me the story of
the Scarlet Herring.
You remember what happened to Kan when he
became a gentleman-how he married the Princess
Angharad and was made Duke of Harlech. Soon after
their marriage they went to live in their Castle of
Harlech, which, as you know, looks from its rock hill
across the sea towards the setting sun.
Now in those days the waves of the sea danced
beneath the castle walls, so that on a calm day you
could see Kan's stronghold standing on its head mirrored
in the blue sea; and when Duke Kan sailed out to sea
his great ships came up a little creek close to the castle
walls, and he leaped on board from the rocks.
People thought it a strange thing that although Kan
and his wife had money and land and soldiers and ships
and horses and cattle and gold and silver, yet they had
no children. For indeed children ought to be-and
sometimes are-better than all these things. They waited
patiently for three years, and no children arriving to stay
with them, they became very sad about it, for if there
was no son born to Kan, who would inherit his castle
and lands ? They knew too well that Kan's wicked
brother Kahnt would put in a claim to his estates,
and the fair Angharad often thought of the day
when she was nearly stolen from her brave husband,
and feared that if she had any children, their wicked
uncle would persecute them even as he had per-
secuted her.

The Scarlet Herring

All these things troubled that charming princess very
much, for indeed whether it is better to be worried by
children all day long, or to worry all day long because
there are no children to worry you, is one of those
things that only professors can understand. So at length
Angharad saddled a white mule and rode away across
the mountains to the blue lake where Catwg the Philo-
sopher lived, for she thought it wise to consult him about
her troubles.
When Catwg heard all she had to say, and that his
old friend Kan was sad because he had no children to
play about his castle, he shook his head gravely, and said
with a mournful smile, It is well written in the Book
of Wisdom, 'The brave man goes in search of trouble.'
Nevertheless, I will consult the Fates, and to-morrow
you shall know all."
The next morning Catwg the Philosopher came down
to breakfast with a cloud on his brow. In vain did the
fair Angharad butter his toast on both sides, and put
marmalade on top of that, and pour cream on to his
porridge with her own hand, and give him five lumps
of sugar in his coffee. He seemed too distressed to eat,
and could only shake his head and mutter, "Verily the
brave man goes in search of trouble." Angharad was
longing to ask him what he had heard from the Fates,
but she knew that if she worried him he would only be
annoyed, and put her off with some dark saying, so she
waited patiently and did not speak. Slowly he finished
his porridge and demurely he munched his toast, ever
and anon repeating the phrase, "The brave man goes in
search of trouble." At length he pushed his chair away

The Scarlet Herring

from the table, lighted his pipe, and telling Angharad to
draw her stool to his side, began as follows :
"My daughter, you and the good Duke shall have a
son, and the Fates tell me that he will have red hair of
a scarlet hue such as man never had before, and they
also tell me that he is born to trouble. For Kahnt, your
husband's wicked brother, is heir to the estates while you
have no son, and until your son is able to protect him-
self he will not be safe from his attacks. But I have
consulted my books, and there seem to be two ways by
which all danger can be avoided. The first is to name
your son 'Carrots.' "
Angharad shuddered.
"It is not a comely name, my daughter; but if you
give him that name, no one will take any notice of him,
and he may pass for a little vulgar boy, and thus live
happily and free from trouble. If, however, the good
Duke will not have him so named-and fathers are so
foolish proud of their sons that they are often wanting
in sense about these things-then you must prepare
yourself for a brave deed. You must take your son to
the highest tower of the castle and hurl him into the
sea, where for twenty-one years he can alone live in
safety, and then he will return and be a blessing to you
and his father for all time."
Now when Angharad heard these terrible things
she wept bitterly, while Catwg the Philosopher quietly
washed up the breakfast things, for he lived the lonely
life of a hermit, and did not keep a servant, and as he
said to himself, "Truly is it written in the Book of
Wisdom, 'Men must work and women must weep.'"

The Scarlet Herring

And when Angharad had finished crying, he saddled
her mule, and taking his staff walked part of the way
across the mountains with her, and as he left her he
said :
"Remember, daughter, all these things are told to
you alone, and must not be revealed to any one-not
even to Kan himself."
Then she said, "Tell me further things I pray you.
When will my son be born ?"
And Catwg answered, "This also I will reveal to you;
it will be a year from to-day."
And Angharad went on her way sadly, for that day
was the first day of the month of April. But Catwg,
as he stood on the mountain side and watched her
passing out of sight, smiled with half a sigh as he said
to himself, He who is born on the festival of fools is
destined to be the king of men."
Now it came to pass as Catwg had foretold, and on
the first day of the month of April, Angharad was the
mother of a beautiful little boy, strong and healthy, with
bright blue eyes, and his hair was a brilliant scarlet of a
colour never seen before. And Kan was so full of joy
that he gathered together all the kings and nobles of
Wales, and invited old Catwg the Philosopher, and gave
banquets in his halls, and held tournaments in his great
courtyard in honour of the event. And when the day
drew near for him to be named, Angharad begged Kan
that he would grant her one boon; but Kan would not
promise anything until he heard what it was, for he said
to his wife, "If it is a wise request I shall grant it; and
if it is foolish, it ought not to be granted."

The Scarlet Herring

"Then," said Angharad, "let us call the little son
'Carrots,' for it is a name I love."
But Kan only laughed, and treated the whole matter
as a joke.
Then Angharad begged him, with tears in her eyes,
that it might be so, but he would not have it.
And that evening Angharad took her little son on to
the roof of the highest tower to see the setting sun, and
Kan went with her, and old Catwg the Philosopher came
and sat on the battlements to smoke his pipe.
And Angharad said, To-morrow our son must be
named. Let him be called 'Carrots.'"
But Kan refused, saying, "I will go as far as Rufus,
but no further."
Again Angharad begged him to consent.
I will draw the line at Red Head, then," he replied
discontentedly; "you may call him Red Head if that
will please you."
Again Angharad urged him to grant her wish, but he
stamped his foot impatiently, and said, Never "
Then Angharad sighed deeply, and planting one long
kiss on the brow of her beautiful boy, she hurled him
with all her force over the battlements of the tower.
Kan was speechless with horror and amazement,
thinking to see him dashed to pieces on the cruel rocks
of the castle walls. But nothing of the sort happened.
The child floated on the air, and when he reached the
surface of the water he joined his tiny hands together,
and stretching them out over his head, dived into the
waves, kicking up his little heels into the spray as though
he had reached his native element.

The Scarlet Herring

Angharad fainted away, and Kan was so wild with
despair that he would have thrown himself over the
walls after his son, had not Catwg stopped him, saying :
"Remember, my son, what is written in the Book of
Wisdom: 'The ways of women are beyond the under-
standing of men, but their own way is the last and the
best.' If you had but granted your wife's request it might
have been otherwise, but now your son must be changed
into a scarlet fish, and live safe from the envy and hatred of
your wicked brother until such time as he may return."
Then Kan, who had up to that time always done
everything that the fair Angharad wanted, felt how
wrong he had been in denying her request, and carried
his wife down to her room, determined if his son ever
did return that he should certainly be called Carrots."
And the little lad who had dived into the waves was
turned into a beautiful Scarlet Herring, and became one
of a family of four hundred
and sixty-eight silver her-
rings that were leaping and
jumping and splashing in
the shallow waters of the
sea. At first the parents
of the family were rather
annoyed to find that a little
herring of such a curious
colour had strayed into
their brood, but they took
care of him as one of their own children, and indeed
when you have as many to look after as they had, one
more or less does not matter.

The Scarlet Herring

Things went well with the Scarlet Herring under the
waves of the sea, and he grew into a fine, big, hand-
some fish, so brilliant in colour that you could see
him coming through the dark-green' waters for a great
distance. On the whole, the fishes of the sea were kind
to him, for they were rather proud of his wonderful
colour, and he was such a handsome, good-natured
fellow that no one could dislike him. Some of his own
brother and sister herrings were snarly with him at
times, and slapped him with their tails, but he never
hit them back again, so they soon gave it up.
One of his best friends was an old Anchor, who had
belonged to the great Bran and his fellow-voyagers
when they went in search of new lands. The Anchor
was a proud old fellow, and, except for a few deaf
barnacles who stuck to him manfully, the fishes of the
sea would not have much to do with him. For when
they came near to ask him for stories, he would tell
them of sea-fights and battles with deep-sea monsters
in strange seas, and sang to them songs of sailors
and their wives and sweethearts. But he had no
tales of worms and bread crumbs, which fish like
best, and so the greedy fellows seldom went to call
on him.
The Scarlet Herring, however, would listen to him
with round staring eyes and open gills for hours to-
gether, and join in the choruses of the songs he sang,
and beat time with his tail to the old sailor chants.
Sometimes the Anchor would groan and creak, and
long to be on board a ship again, and then the Scarlet
Herring would sigh to be a man and take part in man's

The Scarlet Herring

adventures. He promised the Anchor that if he ever
met a sailor he would tell him to come down and
fetch him away to earth again; but the Anchor only
smiled sadly and shook his head, and said, "That I
fear can never be. It is as likely that you will grow
up and become a man as that I shall ever sail in a
ship again."
"You have told me even stranger things than that,
old friend," replied the Scarlet Herring; "but if I were
a man, I would have a golden ship, and you should
sail in it with me; but we would have another anchor
for use."
"Certainly," said the old Anchor, "that would be
best. And now off to bed with you, or there shall be
no more stories to-morrow."
"One song before bedtime," pleaded the Scarlet
Herring; "one of the old sea-songs the sailors used
to chant to you when they hauled you out of the
deep sea."
It was the Anchor's soft point, as that rascal Herring
well knew, and even as he said "No !" the old fellow
began humming a tune.
"Just one," said the Herring.
"Shiver my stock !" said the Anchor, laughing, "I
believe you must be a prince in disguise, for I can refuse
you nothing."
And leaning back against a rock, the old Anchor
trolled out in a gruff rusty voice the "Ballad of Mary
Jane." That was an old favourite, even with the greedy
fish; and codfish joined with cockles, and soles with
shrimps, in shouting out the well-known chorus.

The Scarlet Herring

The Boatswain bold loved Mary Jane,
And Mary Jane loved he,
But she would not marry the Boatswain bold,
And the reason why, so I've been told,
Was the rule they have at sea.
For he was the man at the wheel,
And she knew that it would not do,
For you may not speak to the man at the wheel,
Though he may talk to you.

Weigh the anchor fairly!
Sail across the blue !
Since never again,
My Mary Jane,
Shall I come back to you.

The Scarlet


But when they made him ship's first mate,
To urge his suit again
He hurried on shore with a half-year's pay,
But all that he got, so I've heard say,
From his darling Mary Jane,
Was the answer saucily thrown
From a laughing saucy lip,
" When I want a mate I'll have one of my own,
I don't go shares with a ship."

Weigh the anchor fairly !
Sail across the blue !
Since never again,
My Mary Jane,
Shall I come back to you.

The Scarlet Herring

Now when he came on shore again
He held the Captain's place,
And he knelt at her feet in his bran new rig.
Sword and epaulettes, powdered wig,
And yards of golden lace.
But she merrily shook her head,
Though she owned that the dress was fine,
" For the man I marry must know," she said,
"That the Captain's post is mine."

Weigh the anchor fairly !
Sail across the blue !
Since never again,
My Mary Jane,
Will I come back to you

The Scarlet Herring

He left his ship with a tear in his eye,
And he went to sea no more,
But he lives in a shop on the esplanade,
Where he sells you boats, or a bucket and spade,
To play with on the shore.
Though he never regrets the day
When he left the stormy main,
For it's worth your grog and a Captain's pay
To be moored near Mary Jane.

Weigh the anchor fairly !
Sail across the blue !
Since life is vain,
My Mary Jane,
Unless I live with you.

The Scarlet Herring

That night when the Scarlet Herring went to bed,
he tucked himself in and drew the sea-weed over his
head, and fell to dreaming that he was a grown man
fighting battles in a big ship, with brave, handsome
warriors around him ready to do his bidding; and then
he dreamed again of sailing round the world in a
splendid yacht, with a beautiful lady who gazed at him
with soft, tender eyes. Those were glorious dreams for
a herring to have, certainly.


Of the Scarlet Herrings life in the deep sea, and how five
hundred and eighty-four maidens fished for him but
never caught him

ONE day when the Scarlet Herring had been
talking to his old friend the Anchor for a
long hour and more, he noticed suspended
over his head a worm wriggling round and
round in the swirl of the water. It was past lunch time,
and it looked a cool and tempting morsel for a warm
"Don't touch it !" shouted the old Anchor, "there is
a hook underneath that."
"Nonsense 1" said the Scarlet Herring, "I will sniff
at it anyhow and see what it smells like."
He touched it with his nose, and at once it jerked
away. He smelt it again, and again it darted upward
from him. He waited, and it returned slowly towards
him. This was'too great a temptation. He was hungry,
the worm was fresh and plump, and it sailed towards
him in the most inviting way. Before the Anchor could
cry out and warn him again, he had bolted it.
Then a horrible thing happened. There was a
sharp pain in his throat, and he went rushing up
through the water kicking and struggling without avail,

The Scarlet Herring

until he was landed on the hard flat deck of a fishing-
The next thing he remembered was that some one
took something out of his throat, and he flapped about
on the boards wondering why he could not breathe.
There were two fishermen in the boat.
"Well, I never caught a red herring before," said one.
I shall take it home and have it stuffed."
"Do you think any one will ever believe that it was
red when you caught it, eh, silly ?" replied the other.
"Why, you can tell them I did."
"And get laughed at for my pains. Not I. Red
herrings are red herrings, and fresh herrings are fresh
herrings, aren't they ? This here is a red herring. Well
then, it can't be a fresh herring, can it ? There's some-
thing unlucky about it, I tell you."
Do you think so ? said the man who had caught him,
uneasily, "then I'll throw him back." And in another
second the Scarlet Herring was darting down to his old
friend the Anchor again, very much out of breath and'
with a sore throat, but with just enough flip in his fins
and tail to get along.
When he got back to the Anchor he told his adven-
ture. "You were a lucky fellow," said the Anchor,
laughing. If you hadn't been a scarlet one, you would
have been cooked and eaten."
"If I were a man," said the Scarlet Herring, I
would never eat fish."
"Yes, you would," said the Anchor, "but not until
after soup, of course."
The Scarlet Herring felt too bad to argue the matter,

The Scarlet Herring

so he went off to his fish mother, who tied a piece of
green sea-weed round his throat, and scolded him
lovingly, and put him to bed. She had lost many a
child through greediness of that sort, and not one had
ever come back before.
When those fishermen got home, they could not
forbear to relate the wonderful adventure of the Scarlet
Herring. At first they told it just to one or two of their
friends, as a great secret. But, as is the way of the
world, these friends whispered it to others as a thing
that must go no further, and then, like all other secrets,
it spread and spread until every one knew it, and when
it was no longer news to anybody they printed it in the
It was now many a long year since Angharad had
thrown her little son into the sea, but when the legend
of the Scarlet Herring reached Kan's ears, he sent for
Catwg the Philosopher, to ask his advice, for he could
not but believe that the appearance of a Scarlet Herring
had something to do with his lost child.
And Catwg consulted the Book of Fate, and said to
Kan, "The time has now come when your son may
return to his home. He is nearly twenty-one years of
age, and strong and wise, capable of protecting himself
from the attacks of your wicked brother. He has learned
the ways of the sea, and knows the paths of the tides,
and has listened to the sea stories of Bran's Anchor, until
he is as fit to command a fleet of vessels as any herring
well can be; but he is so fond of his home and his life
in the deep waters, that he will not come of his own

The Scarlet Herring

"Is there no way to bring him ?" said Kan.
" Should we not sweep the sea with nets until we find
him ?"
"No No !" said Catwg. "He is no fool fish to be
caught with nets."
How, then, can we find him, for my heart yearns to
see him, and Angharad his mother has tasted naught
but bread and water since he left us one and twenty
years ago, and she grows thin and pale ? "
"He will be caught," says the Book of Fate, "as
other men are, by a beautiful damsel, and she must hurl
him into a boiling caldron, when he will regain the form
of a man."
"She must be beautiful ?" asked Kan.
"Certainly," replied Catwg, "for is it not written in
the Book of Wisdom, Beauty is the best bait,' and again,
'Man is easier to catch than mackerel' ? When she has
caught him she must marry him, of course, and you
must give them half your lands, a thousand head of
black cattle and your Castle of Criccieth."
"Right!" cried Kan joyfully, "I will do so," and
he raced upstairs two steps at a time to the top of
Bronwen's tower where the fair Angharad sat gazing
out to sea. He told her the joyful news, and then he
imparted to her his- plan, which he had considered while
he was going upstairs, and then he set about carrying
it out.
Heralds were sent to the North and the South, and
the East and the West, announcing that the son of Kan,
Duke of Harlech, was turned into a Scarlet Herring,
and that he was to be caught by a beautiful damsel,


A Ru.sden


..........- 1.........


The Scarlet Herring

who should marry him, and then they should have half
the lands of Duke Kan and his Castle of Criccieth to
live in.
What a flutter this caused throughout the kingdoms
of the world you may well imagine. All the mothers of
beautiful daughters, all the mothers who thought their
daughters were beautiful, and even all the mothers
whose daughters thought they were beautiful but whose
mothers wete not sure about it, began making lovely
frocks for their daughters in the latest fashions, and
packed up their trunks and started off for Harlech.
And the loveliest damsels from England, and Scotland,
and Ireland, and France, and Germany, and the other
countries of Europe, and beautiful princesses from all
the Courts of Asia, and Africa, hastened to the shores
of Merionethshire, each with her mother to look after
her, and a fishing-rod, a bait tin, and a creel to put the
Scarlet Herring into when he was caught.
When they got to Harlech, tents were set up on the
broad plain below the castle, and you could see their
many-coloured flags waving in the breeze as far as the
eye could travel. It was a noble sight.
You must not suppose they were all allowed to fish
straight away. That would never have done.
The Princess Angharad held a Beauty Court, and
gave all that could pass the third standard of loveliness
a certificate of Beauty, and great was the distress of the
poor damsels who failed to pass this examination. But
what would you have ? Some had untidy hair, others
were found to have bitten their nails when they were
children, and more than one had a button off her shoe

The Scarlet Herring

or a hole in her stocking. And as old Catwg said, "Truly
is it written in the Book of Wisdom, 'A slovenly maiden
is.like cream turned sour.'"
However, five hundred and eighty-four young ladies
passed successfully, and at last the fishing began. Great
was the excitement in the morning when all the damsels
were drawn up on the wide-stretching sands with fishing-
rod, bait tin and creel, their mothers with them, and five
hundred and eighty-four boats each with a strong rower,
wearing Kan's livery, to take them out to sea. Kan
and the fair Angharad rode along the lines of beautiful
maidens who stood waiting on the sands for the signal
to be given, and at last the fair Angharad wished them
all joy, the herald blew a loud blast on the trumpet, and
declared the reward due to whoever should catch the
Scarlet Herring.
Then the maidens and their mothers tripped across
the sands each to their boat, and pushed away from
the shore, and in a few moments five hundred and
eighty-four boats were dancing on the waves, and a
small forest of rods and lines stood out against the
blue sky.
What a fishing there was that day Soles, crabs,
mackerel, herring, haddocks, whiting, conger eels, and
even dolphins were caught, but there was no sign of
the Scarlet Herring. One young lady, it is true, came
pulling to the shore in a state of wild excitement
with a red fish in her creel, under the belief she had
gained the prize. But when it was decided that she
had only caught a red mullet, she fainted away and
fished no more.

The Scarlet Herring

So when the sun sank in the west and the herald
blew a blast to signify fishing was over for the day,
the five hundred and eighty-four beautiful maidens
returned with their mothers to their tents, and the


fair Angharad, who had learned 'of their ill success,
sat silent and alone in her watch-tower gazing out
on the golden sea and the rosy clouds through tearful
Meanwhile the Scarlet Herring could make nothing
out of it in his watery home below, and consulted Bran's
old Anchor as to what it could mean.

The Scarlet Herring

"The sea is fairly wriggling with worms to-day," he
said, and fish are disappearing by thousands."
"Well, you keep away from them anyhow," said the
Anchor warningly.
"Rather," replied the Scarlet Herring, "anrd indeed I
feel no pleasure in eating now," and he hung his head
and looked very melancholy.
"What is the matter with you ?" said the Anchor.
"You must have been eating raw Crab."
"No," replied the Scarlet Herring, "yesterday I saw
a vision, and since then I cannot sleep; my appetite has
left me, and I feel I shall never be happy again."
"Nonsense," cried the Anchor, "what was it ? A
dog-fish or a sea-serpent, perhaps. They do startle
"It was a beautiful maiden sitting on a rock, singing
the sweetest sounds I have ever listened to."
"Had she a fish tail ?" asked the Anchor. For if
so, she was a mermaid."
"Not a bit of it," replied the Scarlet Herring in-
dignantly. "I know the mermaids well enough, nasty
impudent things, always playing round some ship or
other. She wore a red cap and a blue dress, and was
wading through the water pushing a big net. She was
very lovely."
"It was a shrimp girl," said the Anchor. "That is
all; and you keep out of the way of that net or she will
be catching you."
"I wish she would," sighed the love-sick Herring,
"for she is very beautiful."
"Don't be a duffer," said the Anchor angrily. "You

The Scarlet Herring

would feel very beautiful while she was eating you for
breakfast, wouldn't you ?"
The Scarlet Herring whisked round in disgust, and
threading his way through five hundred and eighty-four
wriggling worms, which he heeded not, sailed along
towards the shore where he had seen this beautiful


Of the Scarlet Herring's return to his native land

news of his birth was to be read in
the fashionable intelligence of all the
newspapers of the day, and thus it
came to the ears of his wicked uncle Kahnt. Now
no sooner did Kahnt hear of it than he started off for
Wales, taking with him his little daughter Gwenlliam,
for his wife was no longer living and he had no one
else belonging to him. He was full of evil ideas
towards Kan's little son, but he arrived in Merioneth-
shire only to hear of his disappearance. As he did
not dare to make himself known to his brother, he
built a small hut on a lonely island, called Mocras
Island, where he remained disguised as a fisherman,
waiting to see if he should hear anything of the missing
For years he lived on the island, a lonely old man,
and as his daughter grew up she used to earn a scanty
living by catching shrimps and selling them to the
people of Harlech, while Kahnt did little else but smoke
his pipe and wonder if his curious nephew would ever
return, and what would happen if he did.
Thus it turned out that the beautiful vision that

The Scarlet Herring

had so disturbed the Scarlet Herring was none other
than his cousin Gwenlliam, the daughter of his wicked
uncle Kahnt. But she knew nothing of this, and only
knew that she was a hard-working little girl, whose
business it was to catch shrimps along the shore and
sell them to the great people of the castle.
She was certainly a very lovely girl, with dark
brown hair and hazel eyes, and as she had for many
years been used to work out of doors in the sun-
shine, her arms and feet and face were a glorious
golden brown colour, for the sun kisses those he
loves. Moreover, she was as good as she was beauti-
ful, and had she had a mother to look after her and
money to buy new frocks with, no doubt she would
have gone in for the fishing competition with the
other beautiful maidens. But, indeed, she had heard
nothing about it, for no one ever came to Mocras
Island, which was a lonely spot, and as she had caught
no shrimps she had not been near the castle for
some days.
That afternoon she was seated on a rock, gazing
into a deep pool, and could not help smiling at her
own face for the pleasure of seeing it smile back at her.
She was not vain, but she was very lonely, and had no
playmates of her own size to be friends with. So she
stooped down to the water, laughing and half in play,
to kiss her own image ; and as she did so a red streak
glided through the dark pool, her mirror was broken
by the movement, and a pair of fish lips met hers as
she touched the surface of the water. She drew back
frightened and surprised, and to her amazement saw a

The Scarlet Herring

large red gold fish lying in the pool with his big round
eyes gazing sadly up into hers. It was the Scarlet
"What a beautiful fish you are !" she exclaimed.
The Scarlet Herring heard her and wagged his tail
with pleasure.
She thought she could see his lips moving, but she
could not have understood him even if she had heard
what he said.
"You shall live in this rock pool, my beauty,
always, for it is very sheltered," she said, and she put
her hand in the pool, when, to her great surprise,
instead of darting away, he came towards her and kissed
her hand.
Then she tickled him daintily under the chin, and
if he had known how to purr he would have done so,
for he felt very happy. But when she took him gently
out of the pool and placed him in her lap, he could
only gasp, and breathe hard, and look uncomfortable,
so that she very soon put him back again for fear he
should die, saying, I must live on land, and you must
always belong to the sea. But we will be friends to-
gether, and you shall come and visit me every day, for
I am very lonely; and I will sing you all the songs I
make, for now I have to sing them to myself, and that
is very poor fun. Shall I sing to you, darling ?"
And the Scarlet Herring leaped out of the pool and
back again, to show her that he would be delighted.
"Ah !" she sighed, "you in the pool below, and
I on the rock above, remind me of the song of the
West Wind."

The Scarlet Herring

And she sang it to him in a beautiful silvery voice,
so sweetly that all the little sea anemones opened out
their ears to listen, and repeated the last line after her
in their soft childish treble.


A Star-fish sat on the sand,
Staring out into the night:
"I wish I could play with that starry band,"
And shine as bright;
Why is your home with the birds in the sky,
While I lie here in disgrace?"
"'Tis the rule," said the West Wind whispering by,
"Each to his place."

And the blazing Star on high
Peered down in the sea below:
"I am weary of sitting alone in the sky,
When may I go
And play with the rippling stars in the sea,
While the waves wash over my face? "
But the West Wind whispered, "It may not be.
Each to his place."

"It is well for you," they cried,
Rushing wherever you will;
You would be weary enough if you tried
Just to sit still."
But the West Wind said, as he hurried east,
I follow the rule of the race;
The law for the greatest is law for the least.
Each to his place."

The Scarlet Herring

"What are you screeching about down there?
Why don't you go and get some shrimps ? I have had
no tobacco for a week," cried old Kahnt in a cross
voice from the beach.
"There are no shrimps, father. I have tried all
the morning. But see what I have got here !"
Kahnt came grumbling across the beach. He was
not unkind to his daughter, but he was always rather
cross when the tobacco ran short.
He gazed in astonishment at the Scarlet Herring,
for he had never seen anything of the kind before. As
soon as he set eyes upon it, he guessed at once that
this must be his nephew, who was reported to be
turned into a Scarlet Herring; and as he looked at
the rare fish swimming quietly round the pool, his eyes
were filled with a wild hatred.
All he said, however, was: "That's a curiosity. A
red herring swimming about in the sea. Did you ever
see the like ? Can you catch it, do you think ?"
Of course I can," she replied proudly; and put
her hand in the pool to show her father how friendly
she was with the wonderful fish.
"Catch it for me, then," said her father.
"What for ?" asked Gwenlliam.
"Just for fun," said Kahnt slyly.
"It would be no fun for the poor fish, I fear,"
replied Gwenlliam.
"Well, I will catch him myself then," said her
father angrily.
He darted his hand into the pool to catch the
herring, but the clever fish was too quick for his enemy,

The Scarlet Herring

and rapped him smartly on the knuckles with his tail
as he fled away.
Oh, he is gone," cried Gwenlliam in misery. My
beautiful fish is gone, and will never come back. Cruel,
cruel, father!" She hid her face in her hands and
But even as her first tears fell into the pool, there
was the faithful fish wagging his tail and gazing into
her face as before.
Now Kahnt, with all his faults, loved his daughter
dearly, and when he saw her grief his heart was full of
pity. He bethought him of all the wrong he had tried
to do his brother in the olden times, and of the chance
he now had to do what was right and just, and to
please his daughter at the same time. So he told
Gwenlliam that it was her duty to catch the lovely fish,
and take it to the great people of the castle, and he
promised that he would do it no hurt.
Then he went to his hut and wrote a-letter to his
brother as follows :-

DEAR BROTHER KAN,-I send you my daughter
Gwenlliam, and with her a scarlet herring that rumour
says is your lost son. Love and kisses from

This he sealed up and went to see how Gwenlliam
was getting on.
She, for her part, had filled a big pail full of fresh
sea-water, and put a large piece of sea-weed in it to give
shelter from the sun. Then she lifted out the Scarlet

The Scarlet Herring

Herring and placed him in the pail. Kahnt now
brought her the letter, which she put in her pocket, and
with her pail in the stern of her father's cranky old
boat, she rowed across the water to Harlech Castle.
As she neared the castle
she looked round and saw
hundreds of boats dotted over
the sea. Each boat contained
an old lady, who was gene-
rally knitting.or doing crewel
work under a sunshade, a
rower in Duke Kan's livery
of orange and blue, and a
beautiful maiden, dressed in
lovely clothes of marvellous
strange fashion, fishing with a
rod and line. Poor Gwenlliam
had never seen so many
P beautiful ladies or such lovely
dresses before, and blushed
for her own untidy appear-
"What have you got there
in that pail, little fisher girl ?"
:.. asked an old lady, staring at
her through her glasses as
she passed near to them.
"Only a fish, ma'am," replied Gwenlliam. I am
taking it to the castle."
"What sort of a fish is it?" asked the old lady
snappishly. "We get nothing but congers here, and


The Scarlet Herring

they wriggle round my feet and make my petticoats
It's a Scarlet Herring, ma'am," said the fisher girl.
The old lady jumped up in the boat and shouted
out, Fibs she's telling fibs !" and her beautiful
daughter dropped her rod and fainted away.
But the rower stood up and looked in the pail, and
saw the Scarlet Herring lying fast asleep with his head
on the sea-weed. And he cried out to the next boat,
Little Gwenlliam's caught it !" for all Kan's servants
knew the little shrimp girl well and loved her. And
one shouted to another, Little Gwenlliam's caught
it!" Then they all cheered lustily as they rowed to
land, for they were proud that the Scarlet Herring
should be caught by one who belonged to their own
country, even though she was only a fisher girl.
Gwenlliam could make neither head nor tail of all
this disturbance, but rowed quietly on, and landed with
her pail containing the Scarlet Herring, in the midst of
a crowd of disappointed mothers and pouting daughters.
When she stepped from her boat she was met by
the wise Catwg, who looked into the pail and declared
the wonderful fish to be the very Scarlet Herring they
were in search of.
Then the herald led the way through the crowd,
and Catwg took her by the hand, for she was dazzled
and greatly bewildered by so many people around her,
and she was more astonished than ever when the pale
beautiful Angharad herself sprang from her golden carpet
which was spread on a sand-hill, and throwing her arms
round Gwenlliam, kissed her and called her daughter.
33 c

The Scarlet Herring

Hard by stood a caldron of boiling water. And
now Duke Kan came forward, and told her the long
story of his son's adventures, begging her to place the
beautiful fish in the caldron, that his son might be
restored to him again. But the kind Gwenlliam shrank
back, for she durst not put the beautiful fish into the
boiling water, and Duke Kan was terrified that he
should never see his son after all.
Then Catwg the Philosopher informed her, with all
the eloquence and wisdom he possessed, that it was her
duty to hurl the fish into the caldron, but she could not
bring herself to do it, and after four hours' argument he
turned away, hoarse and discomfited, saying, Truly is
it written in the Book of Wisdom, 'The head of woman
is thicker than cream, but her heart is as soft as
Then Angharad came forward, and taking hei hand
whispered, "Surely you will do it for the sake of his
mother !"
At this Gwenlliam could hold out no longer, but
taking the beautiful fish, she kissed it tenderly before she
threw it into the boiling water. And as it splashed in,
she turned away and flung herself face downward on
the sands.
Then there was a loud report as of thunder, the
caldron cracked into a thousand pieces, the steam came
out in clouds, and when it cleared away, there stood a
handsome young man, with long curling scarlet hair,
and deep blue eyes. He lost not a moment, but rushed
towards Gwenlliam to raise her from the sands, and
fold her in his arms. She now remembered her father's

The Scarlet Herring

letter, and you may imagine Kan's surprise, when he
found that he owed his son's return to his brother
Kahnt. Messengers were despatched to Mocras Island
to bring him there in state, that he might witness the
marriage of his daughter with Kan's only son. Words
could not describe the wild delight of Kan and Angharad
as they embraced Gwenlliam and their dear son again
and again. The people around them fairly wept for
joy, and even Catwg, philosopher though he was, sniffed
a bit and blew his nose twice, as he muttered to him
self, "Truly is it written in the Book of Love, 'Joy is
Wiser than Wisdom.'"

How the princesses and their mothers returned
home, what sort of wedding there was, who was in-
vited, and what the dresses were like, you can read in
the Ancient Welsh Chronicles when you grow older
and learn that beautiful language.
But before they were married, Moron, Earl of
Criccieth-for that was the name Catwg gave to the
young earl-built himself a noble vessel, which was
painted red inside and out, with fittings of red burnished
gold, and manned by red-haired sailors. And he him-
self dived down to the bottom of the deep blue sea, and
tied a rope round his old friend the Anchor, and they
scraped the barnacles off him, and placed him in a seat
of honour, and bought another anchor for use, as the
young Earl commanded.
In this vessel Earl Moron and Gwenlliam his
beautiful bride sailed for their honeymoon to the
Southern Seas and the Island of Wight. There he won

The Scarlet Herring

many golden cups and pieces of silver plate, which the
generous natives of those shores used to offer as prizes
to the man who could sail his vessel more swiftly than
others. And there was no vessel throughout thethree
kingdoms so noted for beauty and swiftness as this
ship. And Moron, Earl of Criccieth, like a wise man,
did as he was told by his wife, and named his vessel
in memory of bygone days, The Scarlet Herring.



This little pig went to market,
This little pig stayed at home,
This little pig had roast beef,
This little pig had none,
This little pig cried "Weeh! weeh weeh !"
All the way home.

T HAT is my earliest literary recollection, and
I do not yet know whether to call it a poem',
or an essay, or a history. But it was in some
way connected with my toes, and, if I remem-
ber right, the big toe was the marketing pig, and each
toe played his part down to the very little toe that cried
"Weeh weeh So probably it was a play after all; a
drama acted by toes. It was a beautiful piece, certainly,
full of interest, sadness, and humour ; and long before
I really understood what it was all about, I sighed for
the little pig that had no beef, and roared heartily at
the homesick pig when he ran home crying "Weeh !
weeh !" That indeed was the age of innocence. As I
grew older I wanted to know-children are always want-
ing to know, and I wanted to know-all about those

The True History of

five little pigs. Why only one went to market; why
a pig should have roast beef; what caused the grief
of the little fifth pig ? Had they a mother, and what
was she doing all the time ? I worried over that a great
The more I thought of it, the more mysterious it
became. No one would write a drama like that, so full
of tears and laughter, unless it had once been true.
Then who did write it ? I found quite old people who
had all heard itin their childhood, and they agreed that
it could only be told on the toes to be really delightful.
But who wrote it ? Perhaps it was Shakespeare! But
I think if he had written it, it would have been in five
acts, one to each pig.
But the name of the author was not so very im-
portant after all; the real question was, what was it all
about? I began with farmers. They ought.to know
all about it. I haunted the markets and asked them
if they had ever met a pig there marketing. For, mind
you, the first pig was not sent to market ; he went to
market; a very different matter indeed. The farmers
were merely rude and stupid, and when I asked them
if they had ever known of a pig who ate roast beef,
they laughed and told me to go home.
I consulted butchers. They were more hopeless
than farmers. They had known of families of five pigs,
but they all went, or rather were sent, to market, and
not one of them ever returned home. Alas, they all
died young, and monuments of pie-crust were erected
to their memory. Butchers, I thought, were more
stupid than farmers.

the Five Little Pigs

Then I met a very learned man, a philosopher, who
lived in a library all the year round, and read books
all his time, except when he was writing them. He
said it was a fable or a myth. Yes, that is what he
called it. The first pig was the Sun, and went into the
wide world. The second was the Moon, and stayed
behind the clouds. The third was the Earth, in which
there was roast meat, and the fourth was the Sea, in
which there was none. The fifth little pig was Man,
who ran round grumbling at everything. That was
mighty rubbish, I thought, but when I told the philoso-
pher so, he only said he was sorry for me. So I left
him studying his books, and went out into the wide
world to see if I could learn the truth about that story
for myself.
I tried to learn pig language, but it is difficult-
worse than Welsh or even German-and when I
understood it a little, all that the modern pigs would
talk to me about was swill and barley-meal and turnips.
I do not think I should have ever done any good had
I not met a learned pig at a fair. He went round with
a pack of cards and an alphabet, and would pick you
out A B C, or any other letter, and could find the
Kings and Queens in a pack of cards. He had heard
about the five little pigs, and indeed he claimed to be a
great grandson of the fourth little pig, whose name, he
said, was Trotter. Trotter the Thoughtful he was
called in pig histories, and he had been the first pig to
study letters. Now I was told by this friendly great-
grandson of Trotter that if I went out as a Swineherd
I might do some good. When he was a little pig he

The True History of

had wandered over the hills of Wales, and one day
they rested under the shade of a Talking Oak, and the
tree had'told them the whole history of the five little
pigs. He would have told it to me, but unfortunately
he had forgotten it.
And now it seemed to me I was nearing my goal.
I had never met a real Swineherd, but I had read
stories of them, and seen pictures of them, and I knew
what they were like. I bought a sheepskin and I
made myself, some sandals, and I obtained a little
leather bottle and a wallet to sling over my shoulder.
I also got a horn to call my pigs together, a long staff
to lean upon, and a pipe to play on, for I remembered
a picture of a Swineherd sitting under a tree piping to
his pigs while they danced, or was it a shepherd and
his lambs ? I am not quite sure about it now. Anyhow
I did the best I could, and having bought seven pigs
in the town market-thirteen to the dozen you know,
and you get seven if you buy six-I put them in a
truck, and took train to Barmouth, whence I started for
the wild hills of Wales.
No wonder there are no Swineherds nowadays,
and every pig has his own sty. It is a poor business
to be a Swineherd. All Barmouth turned out to see
me start for the hills, and indeed it was lucky it was
so, for if I had not had the help of every child in the
school, I should never have got out of the town. As
it was it cost me some shillings to make good the
damage those pigs did. They went into every garden
and grubbed up the plants, while one got into a green-
grocer's and ate three baskets of strawberries and a

the Five Little Pigs

pound of grapes. But the worst trouble was caused
by the pig that got into the chemist's shop. He bolted
a whole box of Seidlitz powders before we could stop
him, and felt so bad after it that we had to leave him
behind groaning in the gutter. It is a sad thing to be
a Swineherd.
On the advice of a butcher's boy, I got six strings
and tied one to the hind leg of each pig, and thus
slowly but surely I got them out of the town, up the
hillside, and after about seven hours' hard work we
were fully two miles from Barmouth, and I herded
them for the night in a field. I had to pay five shillings
rent to the farmer for that, and I myself slept under
the wall. There is no fun to be got out of swineherd-
ing nowadays, I can tell you.
The next day I asked for the Talking Oak, but no
one had heard of it. I tried to gather my flock
together with a horn, but it was of no use. When I
blew it they scampered round the field, grunting like
wild things. So I caught them one by one, tying each
one to the gate until I had caught the next one, and at
last I started again for the hills. The sun shone
brightly, the birds sang merrily, and the little pigs
trotted along in front of me at the end of their strings
in the happiest way imaginable. "It is a pleasant
thing to be a Swineherd," I said to myself, for now I
was enjoying it heartily. At length we reached the
open moors, away from farms and houses, where there
were not even stone walls to bother you, and there
above a little blue lake, in a hollow in the mountains, I
spied a large oak tree. Was it the Talking Oak? I

The Five Little Pigs

speeded my pigs along with the staff, and we were soon
beneath its friendly shade, resting after the journey.
It is indeed a glorious thing to be a Swineherd.
I was tired out with my exertion, and having spoken
seriously to the pigs about what might happen to them
in the wild mountains if they strayed away and got lost,
I let them loose. They did not wander far, for there
were acorns to grub up, and I sat with my back to the
Oak Tree in the green shade waiting to see if she would
talk, and watching the blue shadows flitting over the lake
and chasing each other up the mountain side. It is
good to be a Swineherd now and then.
The Oak Tree said nothing, so I took out my pipe to
play tunes to my herd, but before I had played two
notes the pigs were not dancing to my tune but were
scampering away down the hillside. It is a wretched
thing to be a Swineherd when your swine behave like
I stopped, and shouted to them to come back. I
offered them chocolates, and I promised not to play
again, and put my pipe away. Then, one by one, they
slowly returned to their acorns, looking uneasily at me
to see if I was going to play again, and grunting sulkily
to one another.
I did not want to have the trouble of chasing them
all over the hillside, so I did not start playing on my
pipe, but pretended to close my eyes and go to sleep,
resting my head against the tree trunk.
They were all back again now, feeding quietly,
when I heard a whisper above me among the yellow



The Five Little Pigs

Little pigs, little pigs, shall we have stories or
more acorns ?" And all my six little pigs sat up on their
hind legs and begged, grunting out, More acorns,
please." I could have beaten them with my staff, I was
so angry.
Then the Oak Tree shook her branches, and acorns
came rattling down, and the pigs ate them.


When they had finished, the Oak Tree said again,
" Little pigs, little pigs, shall we have stories or more
acorns ? "
And the six pigs sat round again, and said, Stories
now, for we can eat no more for a bit." I could have
kissed the greedy things.
Is the Swineherd asleep ?" asked the Oak Tree.
The six pigs came and sniffed at me, and I breathed
Sound as a hog," said the biggest pig; and they

The True History of

stretched themselves full length in the sun as the Oak
Tree began.
Once upon a time there was a mother pig who
had five little pigs."
I nearly shouted for joy, for I knew that at last
I was going to hear the real history of these five
little pigs.
"The five little pigs," continued the Oak Tree,
"were named Chitling, Fat-chops, Brawny, Trotter
and Scamp. Chitling was a black pig. Fat-chops
was a white pig. Brawny was a pink pig. Trotter
was a black and white pig with a pink tail ; but Scamp
was an orange pig.
"Now I regret to say that these pigs were by no
means so kind to their mother as children should be.
They had a fine sty, a field to run in, and plenty to eat,
but they made the worst of everything, and worried
their poor mother so much about their likes and dis-
likes, that she grew quite thin with fretting. For she
was foolish enough to listen to their complaints and
try to alter things to please them-which is absurd.
I have known many kind mothers who do the
same, but when they hear this story I hope they
will give it up.
"As for these five little pigs, I am sorry to add that
their manners, too, were by no means all that could be
desired. They fought over their food, they put their
feet into the trough, and they were never tired of jeer-
ing at Scamp because he was yellow. This was the
more unkind because Scamp could not help being
yellow, and on the whole he was the best-behaved pig

the Five Little Pigs

of the family, and not nearly so rude to his mother as
the others.
One day when the farmer had filled their trough
with all sorts of good things, these wicked little pigs,
instead of going to tell their mother, who was out in
the field, that dinner was served up, or waiting with
their paws folded round the trough until their mother
came back, actually rushed at the food, and grunted,
and gobbled, and fought and squealed, lapping it up
without any attention to manners, until it was all gone.
Even Scamp took part in this, but he did not feel
happy about it, and being the smallest he did not get
much food out of the trough, for the others pushed
him away.
"When their mother heard the squealing and fight-
ing, she trotted across the field to the farmyard to see
what was the matter, and you may guess her sad
surprise when she found her wicked children had eaten
all the dinner and left her nothing.
Little Scamp hung his orange head with shame, as
well he might. Even Trotter felt as though his dinner
was not going to agree with him, but the three eldest
pigs looked sulky and defiant.
"'It's not the dinner,' said their good mother,
sniffing at the empty trough, 'but to know that I
have such greedy, ungrateful children. To think of
eating it every bit up, and licking the trough clean,
without letting me know it was dinner-time. What
would my mother have said if I had done such a
thing ?'
You should have hurried up then,' said Chitling

The True History of

rudely. 'I'd have waited, but I knew the others
"'You horrid thing,' said Fat-chops fiercely, 'you
had two feet in the trough before I started.'
"'Yes, he began it,' said Brawny.
"'Never mind,' said their mother with mournful
dignity, 'you think you can get on well enough without
me. Good-bye. May you never live to regret your
undutiful conduct;' and without another word she
walked out of the farmyard gate up the road and left
them for ever.
'You have done it,' said Brawny ; 'who will order
the dinner now ?'
Who will tuck me up in the straw and grunt me
to sleep ?' said Scamp, and he cried bitterly, for his
little orange heart was sad.
"'We shall never get anything to eat again,'
groaned Fat-chops.
"' We shall all die of hunger,' said Trotter.
Nonsense !' said Chitling firmly. I will go and
ask the Farmer about supper now.' He. walked up lo
the Farmer, and grunted a long story, but the Farmer
would not listen to a word of it, and threw a turnip-top
at him. When Chitling's mother went to speak to the
Farmer, he always scratched her left ear in a friendly
way, and listened to all she had to say.
"'Never mind,' said Chitling, returning to his
brothers, 'I will see about supper; but I shall have to
go to market myself and order it.'
"And so this little pig went to market.
When he got there he went grunting round to all

the Five Little Pigs

the farmers asking them for food, but they only drove
him away from their stalls and threw things at him.
At last a policeman found him walking about, looking
dismally at a toy-stall and talking to a china pig,
asking him what he did for food in a place like that.
The china pig would not say a word to him, but the
policeman came up and, tying a string round his hind
leg, drove him to a square brick enclosure without a
roof, called the pound. There he lived for three days
with an old donkey and two hens, and had nothing but
stale turnips and water, and no straw to lie on. At the
end of three days nobody claimed him, so he was made
into pork pies, to pay the expenses of his keep. That
is what became of him.
But you will never guess," continued the Oak
Tree, "what happened to Fat-chops. This little
Stayed at home," I said, opening my eyes with
All my pigg started up.
"Who said that ?" cried the Oak Tree angrily.
"Who spoke ?"
"Not I!" cried each pig.
But I heard you," said the Oak Tree sulkily, and
if you know the rest of the story you may tell it
"But we don't," shouted the pigs in despair. Do
go on !"
"Is the Swineherd still asleep ?" asked the Oak
Tree suspiciously.
The pigs came and sniffed at me, and reported me

The True History of

sleeping soundly. I was snoring, I can tell you, when
they came round me.
"Well," said the Oak Tree, I will go on, but no
more interruptions, please."
The pigs settled down again, and the Oak Tree
I will tell you then what happened to Fat-chops.
"This little pig stayed at home. He was too lazy
to go and hunt for food when his mother was not
there to order his dinner, and the Farmer found him
day after day fast asleep in his sty, and sold him to
another farmer, for, as he said, 'something must be
done with him before he grows lean.'
"When Brawny, Trotter, and Scamp found that their
eldest brother did not return, and that Fat-chops would
not go out and look for food for them, and that their
mother did not come back, they grew very dismal, and,
after talking the matter over in a hopeless way for
some time, they agreed that there was nothing else to
do but to go into the wide world and seek their fortune.
They trotted off together down the long brown road
towards the town. It was very hot and dusty, and
they had to keep running out of the way of carts,
avoiding school children who chased them along the
roadside, and then found nothing to eat but a few
wild carrots.
"At length Brawny, who was ahead of the others,
came to a big house by the roadside. The door was
wide open. The children were at dinner. One
naughty little boy sat sulking at his food. He would
not eat his dinner. Brawny came sniffing to the door

the Five Little Pigs

at the smell of the good things. What a naughty boy
that was, and it was such a beautiful dinner. Roast-
beef, and turnips, and potatoes, with plenty of gravy;
and the naughty little boy would not eat it because
there was no Yorkshire pudding.
"The little boy sat there making, oh, such horrid
ugly faces at the turnip on his plate. He did not like
turnips, he said. How rude and mean it was to make
faces at a poor turnip who could not make faces back
at him! I am glad there are no children like that
"' Are you going to eat your dinner, Bobby ?' asked
his mother.
Bobby only made a worse face.
"' I shan't ask you again,' his mother said firmly.
"Bobby sniffed, but said nothing.
'Very well, then,' replied his mother, 'this good
little pig shall have it,' and she put down the plate
on the doorstep. Before Bobby had time to repent,
Brawny had gobbled up the plateful and was licking
it clean. I have always wondered if Bobby's mother
would have done that, if she had known as much about
Brawny as we do.
"How Bobby did howl when he saw his dinner
going down like that and no chance of any more.
But it served him right, and he ate his tea like a model
boy, I can tell you, and was glad enough when tea-
time came. Brawny was so pleased with his roast-
beef that he kept sniffing round the house all day, but
when Bobby's father came home he would not have
him grubbing about the garden, and put him in an

The True History of

empty sty. Some weeks afterwards I saw a notice in
the window, Best sausages sold here,' but whether it
had anything to do with Brawny I cannot say. He
was never heard of again, but he is the only pig
mentioned in history who ever had a dinner of roast
"As for Trotter, this little pig got none.
Indeed, he never got as far as Bobby's home at all.
He was rooting round a gipsy's van, when a big, dark
man put his arm out of the door and caught hold of
him by the ear. Now this gipsy was a conjurer, and
went from one fair to another with a performing dog
and a dancing donkey.
This fellow will do for me,' he said as he captured
Trotter, he looks sharp enough.'
That very night his education began. He taught
him his alphabet first, ahd the way he did it was this.
He put four cardboard letters on the floor, A, B, C, D,
and said, Find A!' If Trotter found A he got a
bit of carrot, but if he found the wrong letter he
got a beating. At first he got more beatings than
carrot! but after a while he learned his alphabet
pretty well, and then he had to learn all the picture-
cards in the pack. After that they went round the
fairs performing. He did not do badly, but it was
hard work, and he never got any roast-beef, only
"As for Scamp, he was left alone on the high-road
crying for his mother, until he went weeh! weeh!
weeh all the way home, and that came about in this
way :-

the Five Little Pigs

"A butcher met him about a mile from his home,
'Holloa,' he said to himself, 'here is a curiosity, an
orange pig, I declare. I will catch him, and take him


home and fatten him for Christmas. He would look
grand in the shop hanging up.'
"Away went Scamp as soon as he heard these
terrible words, squealing out weeh weeh weeh !

The True History of

and away went the butcher after him, his blue
overall flying in the wind. At last the butcher got
close to him and grabbed at his tail. He caught
it, but Scamp made a violent tug and it came off
in the butcher's hand. Away went Scamp again,
shrieking out weeh! weeh! weeh louder than ever.
The butcher did not give up the chase, and it would


have gone hard with Scamp if he had not run
up against his mother just as he got near to the
farmer's gate.
Kind soul, she had forgotten all her anger with
those naughty children, and was returning to see how
they were getting on, and here she was, just in time to
save Scamp from the butcher.
"Scamp ran panting to his mother's side, and the

the Five Little Pigs

butcher stopped out of breath and looked rather
Is this your little son, madam ?' he said to the
mother pig, taking, off his hat to her.
"Scamp's mother grunted something indignantly.
"'Oh well, of course I did not know. He is a
handsome little fellow. I am afraid this is his tail,' and
he placed it on the road before her.
"The mother would not speak to the butcher at
all, who for his part looked thoroughly ashamed of
himself, as well he might. Poor little Scamp He was
glad to be with his mother again, but he felt the loss
of his tail deeply, and he cried out weeh weeh 1 weeh !
all the way home."
I had heard the whole story, and I opened my eyes
and jumped up. To my surprise my pigs had gone,
and I was alone on the hillside with the Oak Tree. I
knew now why

This little pig went to market
and This little pig stayed at home,
why This little pig had roast beef
and This little pig had none,
and why This little pig cried weeh weeh! weeh! all the way

But what about the toes ?" I asked the Oak Tree.
"Why must the story always be illustrated by five
toes ?"
The Oak Tree nodded her branches proudly,
but would not speak. I begged, I prayed, I pro-
mised never to tell any one else ; the Oak Tree was

The Five Little Pigs

firm as only an Oak Tree can be, and silent as a
My pigs had vanished, the Oak Tree would say
no more, and it is still a mystery to me what the
five little pigs have to do with a baby's toes. But
I have quite made up my mind about this-that it
is a glorious thing to be a Swineherd and live upon
the mountains. I do it every holiday now--but
without pigs.




" Apple on the Apple-Tree,
Would you mind a-telling me
Why you are so pale ?
All the apples I have seen,
They were either red or yellow;
You are such a silly fellow
To be green."

" Laddie," said the Apple-Tree,
" Would you mind a-telling me
Why you are so thin ?
Lean and hungry like a rat ?
Don't you know, you silly boy,
You would give your mother joy,
Growing fat ?"

Then the Starling overhead
Lifted up his beak, and said,
"What a foolish pair;
Everything that is, is meant,
Stop your idle magpie chatter,
Thin orgreen, what does it matter?
Be content!"
Pater's Book of Rhymes.



T HE family thought great things of Aunt Apple-
Tree, because they had only a town garden,
and apple trees were not common in the
neighbourhood. So when she dressed up in
pink blossoms in the Spring, they used to come out
and gaze at her in amazement, and bring their friends
round to admire her beauty.
But if the people of the house were proud of Aunt
Apple-Tree, she was much more proud of herself.
She would hardly speak to a single tree or shrub in
the garden, though several belonged to quite respect-
able families, and as to the plants around her, she never
took the slightest notice of any of them. I have seen
her nodding occasionally across the wall to a cherry
tree in the next garden, but that was only in windy
weather, and I cannot say if she really meant it.
Aunt Apple-Tree never managed to raise any apples.
She pretended she did not care to do so, but as the
Holly Tree said, that was all nonsense. It was just
the same as Pater saying he did not like children,
whereas the Holly Tree knew different, for he always
lent Pater a sprig at Christmas time to put in the plum-
pudding, and Pater would not have spent his pennies
on plum-puddings if he had not liked children.

Aunt Apple-Tree

The fact was, that the garden in which Aunt Apple-
Tree lived was no good at all. It was too near the
town, and the smoke and dirt choked the little apples,
and made them so weak that the cold winds blew them
off the trees and killed them; but though it was a
poor place for trees to grow, yet caterpillars, and green
flies, and all sorts of wicked little insects flourished
apace. What really prevented anything doing well in
that garden was the way those four children behaved.
There was not a tree, or a bush, or a plant, in the
garden, but could tell you stories about them, though
when they were away for the holidays the trees used
to say to one another : There's nothing to do, I wish
those children were. back again, they are funny things
to watch, anyhow."
Aunt Apple-Tree got rather the worst of it, because
when they played cricket she fielded square leg, and
when Molly whacked the ball hard that way, it generally
hit the shins of her trunk a nasty blow, or went crash-
ing through the leaves knocking off any poor little
weak apples that the wind had left. If the ball stopped
they shouted out, "Well fielded, Aunt Apple-Tree!"
but if it went by her, they called out, "Muffed!"
" Butter-fingers !" and laughed at her. I need hardly
say that Aunt Apple-Tree never replied to the rude
things at all. She was too disgusted.
Every year when the blossom was out, the children
came and gathered round the tree. My word," they
said, we shall have a lot of apples this year."
Pater laughed, for he had known the apple-tree for
many years and had never seen any apples as yet.

Aunt Apple-Tree

"Anyhow," he said, "Tomakin shall have the first,
Kate the second, Molly the third, Olga the fourth, and
Mother and Pater all the rest."
Tomakin was very excited about it, for he was only
six, but the rest were old enough to know that the
apples were by no means certain.
"The great thing," continued Pater, "that we shall
have to decide, is whether we will make them into
cider or tarts," and he walked away laughing. But
when the cricket season came on, there was seldom
any sign of apples, and long before it was over, what
apples there were had entirely disappeared.
This year things looked better, and one little green
apple had quite a sturdy appearance when they brought
the cricket things out for the first game of the year.
Tomakin was full of hope.
I'm not going to have my apple knocked about,"
he shouted, as Molly began to pitch the stumps.
"We'll all be very careful, really," said Kate.
Tomakin's experience of sisters and carefulness
led him to believe that they had as little to do with
each other as jam tarts and spelling, and he shook his
head slowly, but firmly.
"I tell you what," said Olga, "we can turn the
stumps round."
"Yes," said Molly, "and Aunt Apple-Tree can field
slip, she will be ever so much safer there." And so she
was, and very grateful to Molly for her suggestion.
The Holly Tree got most of the hard whacks now,
and the children made a rule that if it stuck in the
Holly Tree, it was caught out. The Holly Tree did

Aunt Apple-Tree

his best to catch the ball with his top branches, and
when he succeeded, the little girls sent Tomakin up
to get it and stood below shouting to him to make
haste. Then the Holly Tree scratched Tomakin all
he could, so that the tree was nearly quits with the
children for all the whacks he got during the game.
One day, however, the cricket ball went bang
through the cucumber frame, and the gardener picked
it out and gave it to Mother. There was no more
cricket after that, until the children went away to
the seaside, where they played on the sands. The
gardener now went about his work whistling, for he
hated cricket worse than slugs, as it kicked up all his
work in the garden. When the children came out to
play, the trees laughed at them, whilst the little green
apple grew quite big, nearly the size of a straw-
berry, for the cricket ball was locked up in Mother's
Scarlet Runners are the cheekiest fellows in the
garden except, perhaps, Nasturtiums. They grow big
so quickly, and look so smart and important, that they
think they know all about everything. A Scarlet
Runner will talk more nonsense in a day than an Oak
Tree will in the whole course of his life.
No sooner were the Scarlet Runners a foot or two
above the ground than they began to stare round and
find fault. Look at that Laburnum Bush," cried one,
"why does it hang its head in that silly way ? There's
nothing to be ashamed of, even if your flowers are
I tell you what," shouted another one to a Currant

Aunt Apple-Tree

Bush in a bed near, "you should keep those red beans
of yours in a case; that is what we do, it prevents the
dust getting at them. They will never be any good
that way."
Can't you do anything in the way of flowers ?"
said a third, in a pitying tone of voice, to a respectable
Fir Tree, old enough to be his great-grandfather;
"you had better try, or they will be grubbing you up,
you know. Get a stick and climb up it-that is the
way I do."
How the steady-going old trees hated those silly
chattering runners. They said nothing to them, how-
ever, for they knew that before the winter the gardener
would come and dig them up, and they would not be
bothered with them any more. Indeed, no one paid
much attention to the Scarlet Runners. The only
thing to do was just to let them run on in their own
way, and even their cousins the Peas would not talk
to them, but climbed modestly up their sticks and
minded their own business, so there they were, ripe and
ready, weeks before the Runner Beans.
The Scarlet Runners were annoyed that no one
heeded their foolish advice, and they formed themselves
into a Scarlet Runner Society for the management of
other people's affairs. That was why they never got
further than flowers that year, and Pater would not
plant them again, for he got no beans off them. But
they were far too busy to attend to bean growing.
Each member of the Society took some one in hand,
and the gardener could not make them trail up their
own sticks, do what he would. One ran across the

Aunt Apple-Tree

path to get to the Ivy and show it a new way of
climbing up a wall. Another tried to get into the
frame and teach the Cucumbers how to grow fatter. A
third made his way up the washing-post, intending to
get on the clothes-line and rearrange the clothes-pegs,
but the cook made short work of him, I can tell you,
and he died young.
Of course one of them must needs be twisting
round Aunt Apple-Tree's trunk, and as soon as he got
near enough to talk to her he began: Good morning,
madam, is this your little boy ?"
Aunt Apple-Tree looked round. She was annoyed
to see the Scarlet Runner had climbed right up her
trunk without ever asking leave, but she was pleased
to show off her little green apple, even to a Scarlet
"Yes," she said, "he's a fine little fellow, and he's
the only apple I have this year, the rest have all gone
to the seaside."
She had heard the children talk about going to the
seaside, and it was a good enough story for the Scarlet
Runner, who was as ignorant as he was talkative.
Well, you should not have let them go," he replied.
"It is no use trying to bring up one apple by itself.
You want a dozen at least, then they have others to
play with and grow fat and big."
You'll allow me to know how to bring up my own
family my own way," retorted Aunt Apple-Tree with
great dignity.
Not a bit of it," said the Scarlet Runner, "that's
why I have climbed up here, just to teach you."

Aunt Apple-Tree

"Then the sooner you climb down the better,"
replied the indignant Aunt Apple-Tree.
I can't climb down, stupid," said the impudent
Runner; "it is clear you want advice, and you'll get
it anyhow, whether you like it or not. If you have only
one apple, you might at least grow it on the south side
instead of the north, and give it a chance to get rosy."
If you don't go away," shouted Aunt Apple-Tree,
" I shall tell the gardener of you, and he will pull you
up and burn you in a heap."
No doubt the Scarlet Runner was very rude, but I
am afraid the reason that Aunt Apple-Tree was so
angry, was that she felt that there was some truth in
his advice. That is often the worst of disagreeable
people, they tell the truth so rudely that it makes one
annoyed at the time.
The Scarlet Runner was not abashed, and instead of
climbing down he twisted himself round the branches
until he got to the little green apple.
"Well, Sonny," he said, you look rather shrivelled
and bilious. Why don't you grow ?"
I can't," moaned the little apple. I do my best,
but there's no sun here, and the smoke gets in my skin
and dries it up. Dear me, I do wish it would rain."
Aunt Apple-Tree heard him and felt quite sad, but
what could she do ?
"Why don't you make the gardener come round
with rain in his green can ? That's what we do," said
the swaggering Runner.
Do you really though ?" asked the little apple ; I
wish he would give me a drink."

Aunt Apple-Tree

I'll tell him to," said the Runner.
But of course he did no such thing, for he was
mortally afraid of the gardener really, and knew he
would pull him up by the roots if he was impudent
to him.
I wish I could get into the sun," sighed the little
green apple.
"Twist yourself round a bit and climb along the
next stalk," suggested the Runner.
I can't, and I'm afraid of falling."
"I wouldn't be if I were you," said the Runner.
" You would only fall on to the bed below. It is quite
soft, and there is lots of sun down there. I was there
myself in the Spring, so I ought to know."
You be quiet! shouted Aunt Apple-Tree, "and
leave off talking such nonsense to the child. He can't
grow on a bed all alone."
"Can't I really, mother ?" said the little apple.
"Of course you can't, dear; you stay where you
are and you will grow very nicely, there's no hurry
about it."
Isn't there ?" said the Runner. Strawberries are
over, and Currants are over, and Gooseberries are over,
and I'm thinking of turning into a Bean myself, when
I've time. If he doesn't get ripe soon he never will."
Then he whispered to the little apple, "You try the
bed, Sonny! It is ever so much warmer than the
north side of the tree."
Now the little green apple had grown very tired of
his green dress. He had watched the Strawberries
below put on beautiful red glossy frocks, and the

Aunt Apple-Tree

Cherries over the wall don their shining handsome
purple dresses, and he never could be anything but
green, green, green. What a silly little discontented
fellow he was. As his dear mother told him, "It is
finer and better for an apple to be red and yellow, and
big, but if he is born green, and remains green, his
mother loves him just as much, and indeed more, for
she is sorry for him, that he cannot be gay and bright
like the others. But you cannot have just what you
want for the wishing, or I should not be here at all."
Perhaps if that silly chattering Scarlet Runner had
not come along, it would never have happened ; but so
it was, and the little green apple got his little green
head full of the very very green idea of jumping down
on to the warm bed below, and getting ripe all alone as
he had seen the strawberries do.
The Scarlet Runner kept telling him it was the best
thing to do. Then he asked the advice of a Sparrow,
who is as foolish a chatterer as you can find anywhere,
and he said: "The bed is well enough, and if you eat
slugs and worms there are plenty about, but I don't see
why you want to turn red like a Robin. I don't turn
red, and I'm as good as a Robin any day, or better."
That night there came a storm of wind, and the
little green apple swung to and fro, wondering whether
he should jump, and at last he made up his little green
mind, and jump he did. Unluckily he did not fall on
the bed at all, but on the gravel path, where he bruised
himself badly and felt very miserable, for he could
hear Aunt Apple-Tree groaning and creaking in all
her branches; and now that he was lying on the

Aunt Ap le-Tree

hard stony path he felt sorry he had disobeyed his
The wind and rain had stripped the Scarlet Runner
off the tree, and he lay on the bed looking very dirty
and draggle-tailed, and had no heart in him to give any
advice to any one.
"Never mind," he said to himself, "presently the
gardener will come and trail me up a stick."
But the gardener, when he did come, merely pulled
him up by the roots, and he got burned up with the
dry leaves and rubbish.
That morning Tomakin, who had returned from the
seaside, came along the path and found the green apple.
He knew very well that he ought to take it straight to
Mother, but he put it in the pocket of his blouse, for,"
as he said to himself, "there is no hurry about it."
He kept pulling it out every few minutes to see if
it was there, and every time he took it out he sniffed
at it, and at last he bit it. Before eleven o'clock in
the morning the little green apple had disappeared-
skin, core, and all-and at one o'clock Tomakin had
run in to tell Mother all about it. For he felt very
sorry he had been such a naughty little boy, and, more-
over, he had a pain underneath his pinafore, which is
what always ought to happen to little boys who eat
green apples-and it generally does.
The doctor came, and Mother and Pater looked
very serious, and no one seemed to be having a good
time while Tomakin was ill in bed. This preyed on
Aunt Apple-Tree's mind, especially when she heard
Mother say that she would like to have her cut down,

Aunt Apple-Tree

But Pater stuck up for Aunt Apple-Tree, and his view
of the matter was, that a boy ought to learn to walk
by a green apple without touching it, or in any case
ought to be able to eat one without getting ill, which
Mother said was nonsense.
Tomakin got well again in a few days, but his little
face was pale enough to remind Aunt Apple-Tree of
her own little green apple, and that made her so sad
that at last she shed her, few remaining grey leaves
and died.
When the summer came again, and it was clear that
she was quite dead, she was cut down, and sawn into
logs, which were piled in the cellar. All that summer
Tomakin had to field at square leg, and get called
" Butter-fingers by his sisters, which was a fine edu-
cation for him.
When the winter came, the logs were heaped on the
fire, and crackled and spluttered gaily. It was through
sitting on the hearth listening to the snapping of the
logs, and watching the sparks fly from them, that I
learned most of this story ; but some of it I knew
already, and the rest the Robin told me, and I gave him
an old hat in exchange for it to build a nest in. Now
the Robin is not, like the Sparrow, an idle chatterer;
he is a truthful bird, so perhaps this is a true tale.



A bold bad buccaneering boy
Is the kind of boy for me,
Who is ready to sail
In the fearsome gale,
All across the raging sea.
Who will dance a hornpipe round the mast
When the waves run mountains high,
And thinks as little of dangers past
As of those in the by-and-bye.
The adventurous by-and-bye !
The mysterious by-and-bye!
When the veil of the world
Shall droop unfurled
And he lives in the by-and-bye.

A rough and tumble rowdy boy
Is the kind of boy for me,
Who is handy at night,
In the pillowy fight,
With his rowdier sisters three.
He is cheeky, merry, and skittish too,
But he will not tell a lie,
For the blood in his veins is a British blue,
As you'll find in the by-and-bye.

The Golden Jujube

The adventurous by-and-bye!
The mysterious by-and-bye !
When as I make out
He'll be somewhere about
Or I pity the by-and-bye.
Pater's Book of Rhymes.


The Building of the Ship

A LL good little boys and girls with any fun in
them have lots of imagination.
I-ma-gin-a-ti-on is not a word that ought
to be in any children's book at all. It has
too many syllables. That must have been the fault of
its father and mother, or the way in which it was
brought up. It cannot be altered now, and the right
thing to do is for children to keep it in stock, and play
with it when the toys get a bit flat.
You know what it is like. It helps you to make
believe and enjoy yourselves by acting all sorts of
things, such as keeping house and shop, and driving
to a town that is not there, to spend money out of a
purse you have not got, in a carriage of two chairs
drawn by a prancing towel-horse. That is what you
can do with imagination. And I advise you to play
with it all you know how, while you are small, and
before it flies away.
When you grow big you may whistle for it, and it
may not come. I would give a pound of chocolates,
with pink cream inside, if I could go round the floor

The Golden Jujube

on all fours and believe I was a doggy, but that wants
imagination. And if only Mother would let me drive
her out in an arm-chair, with the rocking-horse in
front of it, how much jollier that would be than hiring
Mr. Barker's cabs-and cheaper too. No, it's a sad
thing to be a grown-up, but one must make the best
of it, only I wish I could make believe a bit better.
Now Tomakin could make believe. It was his
strong point, and though he was only seven years old,
he had been at making believe for four or five years,
and did it really well.
When the children went to Nevin for the summer
holidays, there was something in the air that made it
easier to make believe there than it was at home.
Perhaps it was living at a farm among the fields, with
dogs, and cows, and chickens, and pigs, to talk to all
day. A pig has lots of imagination,, but he does not
part with it ; that is why he grows fat so easily. Per-
haps it was having Rhys to play with. He was the son
of the farmer who owned the house, and lived at the
cottage across the yard. What he did not know about
cows, and sheep, and dogs, and horses, not to mention
ships and boats-for his father had been a sea captain
at one time-would not be worth writing down.
And though he was twelve years old, he allowed himself
to be ordered about by Tomakin, who was only seven,
just as if Tomakin was a midshipman and Rhys only
an able seaman. But I think that what made it
easy to make believe, was living among the hills
of Wild Wales, within call of the sea-gulls floating
over the waves, where the tall fir trees, and stern

The Golden Jujube

rocks, and gentle plashing streams, are full of memories
of the camps of native soldiers, and the magnificence
of kingly invaders, and the sweet songs of the bards
with their grand stories of love and honour and glory.
Even I have sat among the hills and thought I saw the
glancing armour of the knights riding down the winding
road from the hillside, and heard the screams of the
Britons flying to their caves among the mountains.
This, said I, is imagination, and I felt hapjy and young
again. But Mother said it was biliousness, and would not
give me a second helping of pudding at dinner. This
made me feel younger than ever, but not so happy.
Pater had been very ill, and the children had gone
to Nevin before he was able to come. When the good
people of Nevin knew that Pater was getting well
again, and was coming down to stay among them, they
hung out all the flags they had, and made the grey
houses smile with bright colours.
Tomakin helped Rhys to haul up the Union Jack
to the top of the flagstaff in the garden.
There were still two or three hours to wait before
Pater would arrive. He had to drive seven miles
across the hills. Molly and Kate had arranged the
flowers three different times in three different ways,
and you cannot do more than that. Kate was filling
up the time by writing a letter to Olga, who was spend-
ing her holidays abroad. The Foreign Tour of Olga
is going to be published early in the next century, but
you can subscribe for it now if you wish.
While Tomakin and Rhys were walking through
the streets admiring the array of flags, Tomakin

The Golden Jujube

suddenly stopped and said, We haven't got any flags
on our ship."
"No!" said Rhys thoughtfully, "it would look
better with a flag."
Now the ship was built in the field, and the masts,
which had been the supports of a swing, were eight
feet high; and for Pater to arrive and see the ship
over the hedge without any flag flying was more than
Tomakin could bear to think of. He stared in at a
draper's window for a moment or two, and then pulling
Rhys by the sleeve, entered the shop door.
"I want a handkerchief," said Tomakin boldly.
"A penny one, please," and he smacked a penny down
on the counter to show he was good for the money.
The lady smiled, and pulled down a big bundle of
handkerchiefs from a shelf.
Tomakin turned them over with the air of a man
who knew what he wanted, and Rhys gazed at him
In the end he said, "This is the biggest," and he
stuffed one quietly in his pocket.
When they got outside, Rhys said, I wouldn't have
got one with a black border, eh !"
"Why not ?" said Tomakin, besides there is a
picture of Mr. Gladstone on it. Pater will like that,
But it's a mourning handkerchief," said Rhys,
carrying on the protest.
It was the biggest," said Tomakin, in a tone that
left no more to be said.
Now when Pater came driving down the street, he

The Golden Jujube

thought there must be a circus in the town, until he
saw all the kindly faces to greet him, and then he knew
that these flags were hung out to welcome him. At
the gate of the little road were Molly and Kate, shouting
out to him to look at their flag, and Tomakin sat on
the cross-trees of the ship waving his hat, and calling
out to Pater to look at his flag. And there was the
grand old face wrinkled in the breeze, and in spite of
the double black border, that was the flag that Pater
liked the best, though whether he was laughing at it or
crying I cannot tell you.
Tomakin's ship had not been built in a day. The
two masts and the cross piece had belonged to a swing,
but top-masts and yards had been fitted on to these
by Rhys. The bulwarks were made of pieces of timber
from the farm, and a real main-sail, made of an old
sack, was set in such a way that it could be hauled up
and down and if necessary reefed. There was a bow-
sprit of course, and a tiller, and a great deal of string
rigging, which caught you like a herring in a net if you
did not know how to get in and out of the ship
without touching it. But the glory of the vessel was
its pulley, which Rhys had fixed on to a swinging boom.
By means of this, a tin pail full of stones could be
loaded on land, hauled into the air, swung round and
let down again into the hold, just as it was done down
below the cliff by the real cargo-boats that were lying
on the sands. How many cargoes were loaded and
unloaded by Rhys and Tomakin every day I cannot
tell you. Sometimes, for variety, the vessel was loaded
by a barrow walked up a plank, but the pulley was

A -pRusa


The Golden Jujube

the favourite method, and you could hear Tomakin
commanding, and shouting, and hauling, through the
long summer days, in a business-like tone of pleasure,
that made you wish you could join in without spoiling
the fun. Then, when the vessel was loaded for the
fourteenth time and the boys were tired, the sackcloth
sail was set, Tomakin sat in the stern, the tiller under
his arm, his eyes fixed on the hills in front of him, and
Rhys climbed to the cross-trees and kept a sharp look-
out that they were not run down by some seafaring
cow, or a wandering pig driven out of his course by
Peroc the sheep dog.
Molly and Kate did not altogether approve of the
vessel. The fact is it would not hold four with any
comfort, and though Tomakin allowed them to sail in
it, he would not let them load it with the pulley. That
led to Molly and Kate building a wigwam close by, and
living in it, and refusing to let Tomakin and Rhys come
and stay with them when they went on shore for a day.
I have only heard Peroc's account of what happened
after that, and he is only a sheep dog, and certainly
had his tail trodden on by Tomakin during the scrim-
mage, but it came to this-that while the two mariners
were sailing in a fair breeze, at something like four
knots an hour, the ladies in the wigwam jeered at the
vessel, and asked in a very loud tone how long it was
going to stand in front of their door and why Rhys did
not get out and push it. Rhys replied that it sailed as
fast as their house, but there is not much point in that,
as a house is expected to stay much in the same place,
even in windy weather. In fact, the ladies smiled at

The Golden Jujube

this in a more aggravating way than before, and made
such cutting remarks to their dolls about the absurdity
of Tomakin's vessel that he could stand it no longer.
"We'd better play pirates," he shouted to Rhys,
and suddenly porting his helm, he leaped over the
bulwarks and made for the wigwam, followed by Rhys.
The girls screamed, Peroc, who was basking in the sun,
jumped up and got his tail trodden on, and what
further damage might have been done I cannot tell
you, because luckily Rhys's mother heard the noise,
and running out of the cottage put an end to the
disturbance by turning them out of the field, and
only allowing them to return on a promise of good
It was then, to make up for their teasing talk, that
Molly and Kate gave a make believe farewell tea in the
wigwam to Rhys and Tomakin, and the two boys took
the young ladies a make believe sail round South
America, Molly being allowed to steer, and Kate to sit
on the cross-bars and look-out, while Rhys whittled a
little lifeboat for Tomakin, who helped him by looking
on in wonderment and admiration.
While they were thus pleasantly voyaging over
unknown seas, and had possibly just rounded Cape
Horn, a shout from Kate of "Pater ahoy!" roused
the whole crew. Jumping over the bulwarks they
ran to meet him, for he had not walked so far as the
field before.
The vessel was explained in every detail by Tomakin.
The pulley was worked, and a cargo of stones unloaded
from the vessel and delivered to Pater, who was stand-

The Golden Jujube

ing in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, charmed with
all he saw.
"Where are you off to ?" he asked.
All round South America," said Molly.
"Can I come ?" asked Pater.
"Rather !" shouted the children.
Kate ran off and got a deck chair, which filled up
three-quarters of the vessel. Then with Molly to assist
him, Pater walked solemnly up a six inch gangway into
the ship and sat down.
I think I'd better steer now," said Tomakin, who
felt the importance of having Pater on board.
"All right," said Molly, putting her legs overboard
and settling herself into the only spare place, while
Kate climbed up to the cross-trees again.
Rhys was still standing in the ocean with his hands
in his pockets. There was really no room for him on
board. Tomakin looked troubled.
Look here, Rhys," he said, "you sit on that plank,
and we will tow you behind like a small boat."
Rhys did as he was told. It was not at all com-
fortable, as the plank was small and not flat, and
Tomakin would make him take his feet out of the sea.
However, a string was made fast to the plank, and with
much shouting, thrown on to the deck of the vessel,
hauled on and made fast, and the voyage was at length
It strikes me," said Pater, when all was quietly
arranged, "that this is the sort of vessel in which to go
in search of the Golden Jujube."
"What is that ?" asked Kate.

The Golden Jujube

"I believe it's a story," chuckled Molly.
"The Golden Jujube," continued Pater, without
heeding them, "can only be obtained by a small boy
who is really as good as his Mother thinks he is."
Tomakin looked thoughtful. Molly chuckled again.
"There isn't one," she said.
"There might be," continued Pater, "one never
knows. You have not only to find the right sort of
boy, but he has to climb to the top of a glass
mountain, without ever looking backwards, and bring
it down in his right hand without tasting it."
"Who put it up there ? asked Kate.
"It was not exactly put up," explained Pater.
"Who made the rule about not looking back ?"
asked Kate.
"It's all in the story," said Pater.
I knew it was a story !" said Molly, thumping the
bulwarks with her fist. Let's have it."
And without more ado Pater began the story of
Silvertongue the Sweetmaker.
And in order that he might lose nothing of it,
Tomakin shipped his tiller, furled his main-sail, and
went to sit on Pater's knee, while Rhys and the two
little girls gathered round as near as might be.
Now, many of you who learn the old Rombolian
language at school, may know this story, but others
will not have heard it, so I put it down here as Pater
told it.


The Story of Silvertongue, the Sweetmaker

HEN the King of Rombolia's only
daughter was nearly three years old,
His Royal Highness went to the
Queen Grandmother's apartments to
have an interview of a deeply important nature. His
wife, alas, had died two years before, and the Queen
Grandmother was guardian to the infant Princess.
The Princess Mary Jane Martha Elizabeth Ann-
or as she was more usually called, the Princess Mab
-had never been three years old before, and in all
probability would never be three years old again. It
occurred to that great and powerful monarch Shallow
II.-known among his people as the King of Ideas-
that this rare and unforeseen occasion of the third
birthday of his only daughter, was one that his beloved
subjects would desire to celebrate with fitting -pomp
and ceremony. With the love which all kings bear
to their faithful subjects, he no sooner understood their
wishes than he set about carrying them out. The
Lord Mayor of Lemonopolis, the chief city in Rombolia,
announced with the King's gracious permission a
national subscription for a birthday present to the
young princess. He himself headed the list with a

The Golden Jujube

thousand gold pieces, and was forthwith made a Knight
of the Noble Order of the Tin Trumpet, and entitled
henceforth to walk in front of his own shadow, and
to enter the King's presence on one leg.
Unfortunately the people were too shy to send in
their subscriptions, and for some weeks the list remained
at a thousand gold pieces. The King was troubled.
He knew what his people desired, and in order to
encourage them and to make sure that all the children
of Rombolia should remember this great occasion, he
enacted the Toy Tax, and by that means raised a very
large sum of money, which was placed to the Princess
Mab Birthday Fund.
It was to decide how this money should be spent
that he came to see the Queen Grandmother. The
matter was not an easy one to settle. The King
thought that a Royal Kindergarten should be built, in
which the Princess might learn that two wooden blocks
placed near two others became four. But the Queen
Grandmother, who could not read and write and was
old-fashioned in her notions, thought it would be much
better if the money was spent upon a magic food bowl,
into which porridge, bread and milk, tapioca pudding,
and other wholesome but not gladsome meals could be
placed, and made to appear to the Princess Mab as
though they were bath buns and penny ices.
They were engaged in earnest argument on this
point, when Mab herself tumbled into the room head
over heels, followed by the thirteenth under nurse in
waiting, and asked with a frank and engaging simplicity
for a goody.

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