Text of Plan #970
  WEEK 4  


Pinocchio  by Carlo Collodi

The Talking-Cricket

The story of Pinocchio and the Talking-cricket, from which we see that naughty boys cannot endure to be corrected by those who know more than they do.

W ELL then, children, I must tell you that whilst poor Geppetto was being taken to prison for no fault of his, that imp Pinocchio, finding himself free from the clutches of the carabineer, ran off as fast as his legs could carry him. That he might reach home the quicker he rushed across the fields, and in his mad hurry he jumped high banks, thorn hedges, and ditches full of water, exactly as a kid or a leveret would have done if pursued by hunters.

Having arrived at the house he found the street door ajar. He pushed it open, went in, and having secured the latch threw himself seated on the ground and gave a great sigh of satisfaction.

But his satisfaction did not last long, for he heard some one in the room who was saying:


"Who calls me?" said Pinocchio in a fright.

"It is I!"

Pinocchio turned round and saw a big cricket crawling slowly up the wall.

"Tell me, Cricket, who may you be?"

"I am the Talking-cricket, and I have lived in this room a hundred years and more."

"Now, however, this room is mine," said the puppet, "and if you would do me a pleasure go away at once, without even turning round."

"I will not go," answered the Cricket, "until I have told you a great truth."

"Tell it me, then, and be quick about it."

"Woe to those boys who rebel against their parents, and run away capriciously from home. They will never come to any good in the world, and sooner or later they will repent bitterly."


"Sing away, Cricket, as you please, and as long as you please. For me, I have made up my mind to run away to-morrow at daybreak, because if I remain I shall not escape the fate of all other boys; I shall be sent to school and shall be made to study either by love or by force. To tell you in confidence, I have no wish to learn; it is much more amusing to run after butterflies, or to climb trees and to take the young birds out of their nests."

"Poor little goose! But do you not know that in that way you will grow up a perfect donkey, and that every one will make game of you?"

"Hold your tongue, you wicked ill-omened croaker!" shouted Pinocchio.

But the Cricket, who was patient and philosophical, instead of becoming angry at this impertinence, continued in the same tone:

"But if you do not wish to go to school why not at least learn a trade, if only to enable you to earn honestly a piece of bread!"

"Do you want me to tell you?" replied Pinocchio, who was beginning to lose patience. "Amongst all the trades in the world there is only one that really takes my fancy."

"And that trade—what is it?"

"It is to eat, drink, sleep, and amuse myself, and to lead a vagabond life from morning to night."

"As a rule," said the Talking-cricket with the same composure, "all those who follow that trade end almost always either in a hospital or in prison."

"Take care, you wicked ill-omened croaker! . . . Woe to you if I fly into a passion! . . ."

"Poor Pinocchio! I really pity you! . . ."

"Why do you pity me?"

"Because you are a puppet and, what is worse, because you have a wooden head."

At these last words Pinocchio jumped up in a rage, and snatching a wooden hammer from the bench he threw it at the Talking-cricket.


Snatched up a wooden hammer.

Perhaps he never meant to hit him but unfortunately it struck him exactly on the head, so that the poor Cricket had scarcely breath to cry cri-cri-cri, and then he remained dried up and flattened against the wall.


Viking Tales  by Jennie Hall

Olaf's Fight with Havard


A T another time Harald said:

"Tell me of a fight, Olaf. I want to hear about the music of swords."

Olaf's eyes blazed.

"I will tell you of our fight with King Havard," he said.

"One dark night we had landed at a farm. We left our 'Waverunner' in the water with three men to guard her. The rest of us went into the house. The farmer met us at the door, but he died by Thorkel's sword. The others we shut into their beds. The door at each end of the hall we had barred on the inside so that nobody could surprise us. We were busy going through the cupboards and shouting at our good luck. But suddenly we heard a shout outside:

" 'Thor and Havard!'

"Then there was a great beating at the doors.

" 'He has two hundred fighters with him,' said Grim; 'for we saw his ships last night. Thirty against two hundred! We shall all drink in Valhalla to-night.'

" 'Well,' I cried, 'Odin shall have no unwilling guest in me.'

" 'Nor in me,' cried Hakon.

" 'Nor in me,' shouted Thorkel.

"And that shout went all around, and we drew out our swords and caught up our shields.

" 'Hot work is ahead of us,' said Hakon. 'Besides, we must leave none of this mead for Havard. Lend a hand some one.'

"Then he and another pulled out a great tub that sat on the floor of the cupboard.

" 'I drink to Valhalla to-night,' cried Thorkel the Thirsty, and he plunged his horn deep into the tub.

"When he brought it up, his sleeve was dripping and the sweet mead was running over from the horn.

" 'Sloven!' cried Hakon, and he struck Thorkel with his fist and knocked him over into the cupboard.

"He fell against the wooden wall at the back, and a carved panel swung open behind him. He dropped down head first. In a minute he put his head out of the hole again. We all stood staring.

" 'I think it is a secret passage,' he said.

" 'We will try it,' I answered in a whisper. 'Throw dirt on the fire. It must be dark.'

"So we dug up dirt from the earth floor and smothered the fire. All this time there was a terrible shouting and hammering at the doors, but they were of heavy logs and stood.

" 'I with four more will guard this door,' I said, pointing to the east end.

"Immediately four men stepped to my side.

" 'And I will guard the other,' Hakon said, and four went with him.

" 'The rest of you, down the hole!' I said. 'Close the door after you. If luck is with us we will meet at the ships. Now Thor and our good swords help us! Quick! The doors are giving way.'

"So we ten men stood at the doors and held back the king's soldiers. It was dark in the room, and the people out of doors could not tell how many were inside. Few were eager to be the first in.

" 'Thirty swords are waiting in there to eat up the first man,' we heard some one say.

"We chuckled at that.

"But the king stood in the very doorway and fought. Our five swords held him back for a long time, but at last he pushed in, and his men poured after him. We ran back and hid behind some tubs in a dark corner. The king's men went groping about and calling, but they did not find us. The room was full of shouting and running and sword-clashing; for in the dark and the noise the men could not tell their own soldiers. More than one fell by his friend's sword. When it was less crowded about the doorway, I whispered:

" 'Follow me in double line. We will make for the ships. Keep close together.'

"So that double line of men, with swords swinging from both sides, ran out through the dark. Swords struck out at us, and we struck back. Men ran after us shouting, but our legs were as good as theirs. But I and Hakon and one other were all that reached the ship. There we saw our 'Waverunner' with sail up and bow pointing to open sea. We swam out to her and climbed aboard. Then the men swung the sail to the wind, and we moved off. Even as we went, a spear whizzed through the air, and Hakon fell dead; for the king and all his men were running to the shore.

" 'After them!' they were shouting.

"Then we heard the king call, to the men in his boats lying out in the water:

" 'Row to shore and take us in.'

"Thorkel was standing by my side. At that he laughed and said:

" 'They do not answer. He left but a handful to guard his ships. They tasted our swords. And we went aboard and broke the oars and threw the sails into the water. It will be slow going for Havard to-night.'


"Then he turned to the shore and sang out loudly."

"Then he turned to the shore and sang out loudly:

" 'King Havard's ships are dead:

Olaf's dragon flies,

King Havard stamps the shore:

Olaf skims the waves.

King Havard shakes his fist:

Olaf turns and laughs.'

"That was the end of our meeting with King Havard."



Margaret Vandegrift

The Sandman

The rosy clouds float overhead,

The sun is going down;

And now the sandman's gentle tread,

Comes stealing through the town.

"White sand, white sand," he softly cries,

And, as he shakes his hand,

Straightway there lies on baby's eyes

His gift of shining sand.

Blue eyes, gray eyes, black eyes and brown,

As shuts the rose, they softly close,

When he goes through the town.

From sunny beaches far away—

Yes, in another land—

He gathers up at break of day

His store of shining sand.

No tempests beat that shore remote,

No ships may sail that way;

His little boat alone may float

Within that lovely bay.

Blue eyes, gray eyes, black eyes and brown,

As shuts the rose, they softly close,

When he goes through the town.

He smiles to see the eyelids close

Above the happy eyes,

And every child right well he knows,—

Oh! he is very wise!

But if, as he goes through the land,

A naughty baby cries,

His other hand takes dull gray sand

To close the wakeful eyes.

Blue eyes, gray eyes, black eyes and brown,

As shuts the rose, they softly close,

When he goes through the town.

So when you hear the sandman's song

Sound through the twilight sweet,

Be sure you do not keep him long

A-waiting on the street.

Lie softly down, dear little head,

Rest quiet, busy hands,

Till by your bed, his good-night said,

He strews the shining sands.

Blue eyes, gray eyes, black eyes and brown,

As shuts the rose, they softly close,

When he goes through the town.


  WEEK 4  


Fifty Famous Stories Retold  by James Baldwin

The Sons of William the Conqueror

T HERE was once a great king of England who was called William the Conqueror, and he had three sons.

One day King William seemed to be thinking of something that made him feel very sad; and the wise men who were about him asked him what was the matter.

"I am thinking," he said, "of what my sons may do after I am dead. For, unless they are wise and strong, they cannot keep the kingdom which I have won for them. Indeed, I am at a loss to know which one of the three ought to be the king when I am gone."

"O king!" said the wise men, "if we only knew what things your sons admire the most, we might then be able to tell what kind of men they will be. Perhaps, by asking each one of them a few questions, we can find out which one of them will be best fitted to rule in your place."

"The plan is well worth trying, at least," said the king. "Have the boys come before you, and then ask them what you please."

The wise men talked with one another for a little while, and then agreed that the young princes should be brought in, one at a time, and that the same questions should be put to each.

The first who came into the room was Robert. He was a tall, willful lad, and was nicknamed Short Stocking.

"Fair sir," said one of the men, "answer me this question: If, instead of being a boy, it had pleased God that you should be a bird, what kind of a bird would you rather be?"

"A hawk," answered Robert. "I would rather be a hawk, for no other bird reminds one so much of a bold and gallant knight."

The next who came was young William, his father's namesake and pet. His face was jolly and round, and because he had red hair he was nicknamed Rufus, or the Red.

"Fair sir," said the wise man, "answer me this question: If, instead of being a boy, it had pleased God that you should be a bird, what kind of a bird would you rather be?"

"An eagle," answered William. "I would rather be an eagle, because it is strong and brave. It is feared by all other birds, and is therefore the king of them all."

Lastly came the youngest brother, Henry, with quiet steps and a sober, thoughtful look. He had been taught to read and write, and for that reason he was nicknamed Beauclerc, or the Handsome Scholar.

"Fair sir," said the wise man, "answer me this question: If, instead of being a boy, it had pleased God that you should be a bird, what kind of a bird would you rather be?"

"A starling," said Henry. "I would rather be a starling, because it is good-mannered and kind and a joy to every one who sees it, and it never tries to rob or abuse its neighbor."

Then the wise men talked with one another for a little while, and when they had agreed among themselves, they spoke to the king.

"We find," said they, "that your eldest son, Robert, will be bold and gallant. He will do some great deeds, and make a name for himself; but in the end he will be overcome by his foes, and will die in prison.

"The second son, William, will be as brave and strong as the eagle but he will be feared and hated for his cruel deeds. He will lead a wicked life, and will die a shameful death.

"The youngest son, Henry, will be wise and prudent and peaceful. He will go to war only when he is forced to do so by his enemies. He will be loved at home, and respected abroad; and he will die in peace after having gained great possessions."

Years passed by, and the three boys had grown up to be men. King William lay upon his death-bed, and again he thought of what would become of his sons when he was gone. Then he remembered what the wise men had told him; and so he declared that Robert should have the lands which he held in France, that William should be the King of England, and that Henry should have no land at all, but only a chest of gold.

So it happened in the end very much as the wise men had foretold. Robert, the Short Stocking, was bold and reckless, like the hawk which he so much admired. He lost all the lands that his father had left him, and was at last shut up in prison, where he was kept until he died.

William Rufus was so overbearing and cruel that he was feared and hated by all his people. He led a wicked life, and was killed by one of his own men while hunting in the forest.

And Henry, the Handsome Scholar, had not only the chest of gold for his own, but he became by and by the King of England and the ruler of all the lands that his father had had in France.


Outdoor Visits  by Edith M. Patch

White Pine

§ 1. White Pine

"Would you like to visit some trees with cones?" asked Uncle Tom.

"May we go this week while we are at the farm?" asked Don.

"Yes, you may go to-day," said his uncle.

"May we keep the different kinds of cones we find?" asked Nan.

Uncle Tom said, "When you learn the name of a cone tree and how its leaves grow, you may have some of its cones."

So they went to visit cone trees.

The biggest cones they found on a white pine tree. Some of these cones were about six inches long.


It took the white pine cones two summers to grow. So there were some small young cones on the tree and some that were big and old.

The short young cones were closed. They were not old enough to let their seeds fall out.

The long old cones were open. Their seeds fell out in September.

The white pine is an evergreen tree. It does not shed its old leaves until its new leaves grow. It is never without green leaves. So people call it "ever green."

The leaves are long and slender. They look somewhat like needles. So people call them "pine needles."

The leaves of the white pine grow in clusters. There are five leaves in each cluster.


Don and Nan counted the leaves in some of the clusters on a low branch.

They could not pick any cones from the pine tree. The cones were high.

But they found some dry open cones on the ground under the tree. So they took them to show to their uncle. They asked him the name of the tree.

"If you will tell me how the leaves grow, I will tell you the name of the tree," he said.

"The leaves grow in clusters," said Nan.

"There are five long slender leaves in each cluster," said Don.

"The name of the tree is White Pine," said Uncle Tom, "and you may have the cones to keep."

"Does any tree have bigger cones than the white pine?" asked Don.

"Yes," said Uncle Tom. "Some other kinds of pines have much bigger cones.

"They grow where winter is not so cold as it is here."



The Quarrelsome Kittens

Two little kittens, one stormy night,

Began to quarrel, and then to fight;

One had a mouse and the other had none,

And that's the way the quarrel begun.

"I'll have that mouse," said the biggest cat,

"You'll have that mouse? We'll see about that!"

"I will have that mouse," said the eldest son;

"You shan't have that mouse," said the little one.

I told you before 'twas a stormy night

When these two little kittens began to fight;

The old woman seized her sweeping broom,

And swept the two kittens right out of the room.

The ground was covered with frost and snow,

And the two little kittens had nowhere to go.

So they laid them down on the mat at the door

While the angry old woman finished sweeping the floor.

Then they crept in, as quiet as mice,

All wet with snow and as cold as ice;

For they found it was better, that stormy night,

To lie down and sleep than to quarrel and fight.


  WEEK 4  


The Seasons: Winter  by Jane Marcet

The Sun

"Mamma," said Willy, "did not you say that the snowball would not melt if I left it out in the air?"

"I did, indeed, Willy; but I forgot the sun, and forgot to tell you that you should have placed it in a window on which the sun did not shine in the morning; for the sun's rays are so warm, that they will melt the snow, more or less, though it freezes very hard."

"But," replied Willy, "the sun shines on all the windows, Mamma."

"On all that are on this side the house; but run into the dining-room, and see whether it shines in at the windows there."

Willy set off as fast as he could go, for he was always fond of a scamper; and when he reached the dining-room, there was no sun shining in at the windows; and he went and looked out through every one of them, but could not see the sun up in the sky. "I wonder what is become of it," thought he to himself; "for there are no clouds to hide it."

Then his Mamma showed him that the sun could not be on both sides of the house at once. "But it will move round to the other side of the house, and shine in at the dining-room windows in the afternoon," continued she; "so that the room will be warm by dinner-time."

"It is very cold now," said Willy, "though there is a fire: much colder than this room."

"We have here not only a fire, my dear, but the sun shining in at the windows; so no wonder that it is warmer here. This room looks towards the east."

"The east—what is that, Mamma?"

"The east is where the sun rises in the morning; and the west is where it sets in the evening. Can you remember that?"

"I will try, Mamma."

So, in order to get it by heart, he began singing—"East and west, east and west."

"Oh!" cried Mamma, "if you make a song of it, you must turn it into rhyme."

"I don't know how, Mamma: will you make a song of it for me?"

So Mamma reflected for a minute or two, and then she said to Willy, "My song asks a question of the sun,—

"The east or the west—which like you the best?"

Then the sun answers—

"The east when I rise, when I'm setting the west."

"But that is all make-believe, Mamma; for the sun cannot hear what you say, and it cannot answer you."

"Oh yes, my dear; there is a great deal of make-believe in verses."

"But how does the sun set, Mamma?—what does that mean?"

"I will show you from the windows of the dining-room, this evening, my dear."

In the afternoon, while Willy was playing in the nursery, his Mamma called to him to come and see the sun shining in at the dining-room windows.

"Oh, oh, Mr. Sun!" cried Willy; "you are coming to pay a visit in this room now, are you?"

Then Willy slipped away in a hurry; and his Mamma wondered what he was gone for. Willy was gone to see whether the sun still shone in at the drawing-room windows as it did in the morning; but he found it was not to be seen there. So he came back, and told his Mamma he understood how the sun had moved in the sky, and come over to the other side of the house. "How red it looks, Mamma!—What is the matter with you, Mr. Sun? I hope you are not in a passion."

"No," said Mamma, laughing at Willy's fun; "but he often looks red when he is going to set."

"Why, Mamma?"

"That would be too difficult to explain to you, my dear, till you are much older than you are now."

"Oh, now, pray do, Mamma," cried Willy, coaxingly: "you know I always understand what you explain to me."

But Mamma gently shook her head. So he added, "almost always."

"That is true," said his Mamma; "but it is because I do not explain to you what is too difficult for you to understand. Look, Willy, at those beautiful red clouds: it is the sun shining on them which makes them look so red."

"They look, Mamma, almost as if they were on fire, burning."

"No," replied she; "they are made of water, just like the black clouds which hid the sun this morning."

"Were you ever up in the clouds, Mamma, to see what they are made of?"

"No, my dear; but sometimes the clouds come down to us. The first time they do, I will call you to see them."

"Oh! I shall like that very much, Mamma: but are you sure they will not fall upon my head, and hurt me?"

"Yes, my dear," said Mamma, smiling; "I should not call you to see any thing that would hurt you.—Now the sun is just going to set, Willy. Look! it is going down behind the hill yonder."

"In the west, Mamma: I don't forget that when the sun sets it is in the west. And is it gone to bed there?"

"No," replied she: "people say sometimes that the sun is gone to bed; but that is make-believe, or fun."

"Then, where is it gone, Mamma?"

"It is gone to make daylight in other countries a great way off: it would not be fair if it always staid with us, and left other places in the dark."

"No, indeed," cried Willy; "besides, we do not want its light when we are asleep at night: so we can spare it then very easily."

"Yes," said Mamma; "we will let it go to make daylight in other countries while we are asleep."

Willy thought for a moment, and then exclaimed,—"How funny, Mamma! Then the sun makes it daylight in those other countries when it is dark here?"

"Yes," said she: "the sun cannot be here and there at the same time: so when it is daylight here, it is dark-night there; and when night comes here, it is because the sun is setting,—that is, going to shine in another country."

"There! it is going, Mamma. Good night, Sun! Oh, no; I must not say good night, Sun, for it is never night to the sun, but always day; for, wherever he shines he makes it daylight.—Then, Mamma," said Willy, "the little boys in the country where the sun is now going are not going to bed, I suppose?"

"No, my dear; they are just getting up; they are just beginning to see the sun. And what do you say when you are beginning to see the sun?"

"Ann showed it to me the other day; and she said, 'Jump out of bed, Willy, and come and see the sun, it is just rising.' "

"Well, then," continued Mamma, "now that it is set to us, the little boys in the country it is gone to see it just rising; and perhaps their nurses may call to them to jump up and look at it. But, Willy; you must be off to bed now; and, perhaps, you may awake to-morrow morning early enough to see the sun rise, when it returns to us."

"Oh yes, Mamma; and then the little boys in the country it leaves will be going to bed! How funny that is!"

Then he sprang on his Mamma's lap to kiss her, and ran up to bed.


The Aesop for Children  by Milo Winter

The Frogs and the Ox

An Ox came down to a reedy pool to drink. As he splashed heavily into the water, he crushed a young Frog into the mud. The old Frog soon missed the little one and asked his brothers and sisters what had become of him.

"A great big  monster," said one of them, "stepped on little brother with one of his huge feet!"

"Big, was he!" said the old Frog, puffing herself up. "Was he as big as this?"


"Oh, much  bigger!" they cried.

The Frog puffed up still more. "He could not have been bigger than this," she said. But the little Frogs all declared that the monster was much, much  bigger and the old Frog kept puffing herself out more and more until, all at once, she burst.

Do not attempt the impossible.


A. A. Milne

At the Zoo

There are lions and roaring tigers, and enormous camels and things,

There are biffalo-buffalo-bisons, and a great big bear with wings,

There's a sort of a tiny potamus, and a tiny nosserus too—

But I  gave buns to the elephant when I  went down to the Zoo!

There are badgers and bidgers and bodgers, and a Superintendent's House,

There are masses of goats, and a Polar, and different kinds of mouse,

And I think there's a sort of a something which is called a wallaboo—

But I  gave buns to the elephant when I  went down to the Zoo!

If you try to talk to the bison, he never quite understands;

You can't shake hands with a mingo—he doesn't like shaking hands.

And lions and roaring tigers hate  saying, "How do you do?"—

But I  give buns to the elephant when I  go down to the Zoo!


  WEEK 4  


The Girl Who Sat by the Ashes  by Padraic Colum

The Girl in the Goat-shed



T hey shut the door behind her and they pulled the latch down on it; she knew that it was either Buttercup or Berry-bright that did this. The latching of the door was like as if someone had pushed her; she went away from the house.

She went from the house and away into the little dell where she used to sit when she wanted to talk to herself. A tree grew in that dell, a rowan tree that had lots of bright red berries on it. She used to sit under that tree when her seven Goats hadn't to be minded. She would talk to herself about the clouds and the moon, how the clouds were great Goats and that a great Goat-herd was driving; first the white fleecy Goats and then the dark Goats that went slower and slower, and how the Moon was a Girl like herself, having to go far out into the sky for a pitcher of water. When she was in this dell she was, not Girl-go-with-Goats, but Maid-alone. And the things that she owned and that she alone knew of were in that dell: a red bee's nest that hummed and hummed to her all the hours she was there; tall blue-bells; a little spring of water that she had set round with the white stones that she had found on the hill; a flat stone that had the moving shadow of the leaves, each leaf as clear as it was on the tree. And she had a box hidden under the grass; she kept in it all the things that were her very own: a half of a buckle that looked beautiful set in a bracelet of grass; four beads of different colors, and a ball of red thread.

She came to that dell and she laid down in the grass and she cried and cried, for she thought there was no one in the world as lonely as she. But the next of red bees hummed to her and hummed to her, and she sat up, thinking that her loneliness was like something she herself had found, her own too, like the half buckle and the beads and the ball of red thread, and the nest of red bees, and the blue-bells, and the little spring with the white stones round it. She sat up then and she looked at the sky with the clouds going over it, and at the bunches of bright red berries on the rowan tree.

Then down from the rowan tree flew the two starlings that had lighted on her shoulders when she gathered the berries for the King's son in the garden. They perched on her shoulders again and they said to her. And the song they sang to her was "Down the long meadows we go."

Down the long meadows we go, we go,

Down the long meadows we go.

I'll pluck you three willow rods down by the stream,

I'll pluck you three willow rods down by the stream,

I'll pluck you three willow rods down by the stream,

And give you the sun that's upon them.

A Cuckoo all blue will sing on a branch,

A Cuckoo all blue will sing on a branch,

A Cuckoo all blue will sing on a branch,

And the Swan that's King Connor's will seek you.

The Son of the King of the Hill will be there,

The Son of the King of the Hill will be there,

The Son of the King of the Hill will be there,

Making game of his Grandmother's dancing.

Down the long meadows we'll go, we'll go,

Down the long meadows we'll go.

And when Girl-go-with-the-Goats—but Maid-alone she was there—when Maid-alone had heard the song the starlings sang to her, she did not feel herself half so lonesome.


And now Girl-go-with-the-Goats rose up, her mind bent on the work of the house that she did not now belong to. When she came before it the door was still closed. Smoke was coming out of the chimney and she knew that supper was being made ready. She brought peat from the stack and left them beside the door so that they could be brought in to the fire. She went and brought up the clothes she had washed and that had been left drying on the stones beside the stream. When she did this she found her supper laid on a board at the gable end of the house, and while she ate it the two starlings perched on her shoulders. Then she took the two pitchers down to the well and brought back the water for the morning.

The next thing was to bring the Goats from the high places and the rocky places. She stood on a high place and called to them. One Goat lifted her head and came to her. Then three others came, stopping now and again to crop the tops of the little bushes. Beyond the bushes, somewhere, was an old Goat that never answered to her call. She had to slip off and find that other one and pull her or drive her to this place before the others found out that she was gone. Then there were two others to get. One she saw on a high rock very far up, but this was a good Goat and would come when she called, "Nannie, Nannie, Nannie." The other was a Goat without horns and one never knew where she was, but one found her joining the others as they were making for home. Girl-go-with-the-Goats struck the old cantankerous Goat with a switch, dodged her horns as she reared up, and got her started to the place where most of the other Goats had gathered together.

It was hard to get them home. On the way there were scores of little paths, and one Goat would try one path and another Goat would try another path, and Girl-go-with-the-Goats would have to follow first one and then the other, and no sooner would she have them together than they would scatter again. Oh, it was the worst trouble in the whole world, this fending for seven Goats!

She got them in the green before the Goat-shed, and she took off the doorstep the pitcher that she was to milk into. For some reason or another the Goats gave little milk that evening and she knew that Dame Dale would say that she had milked them badly or that she spilled their milk.

Then she got the Goats into the shed, and she took the pitcher and she left it in the stream. It was getting dark now, and as she crossed a wall of stones on her way back a little newt came out from a crack and looked at her. She was frightened of the little creature that is like nothing else in the world, that moves so strangely, and that has its house in the stones. She might see the door of Dame Dale's house open, she thought, and Dame Dale standing there to call her in, now that she had done her work and that dark night was coming on. But the door was closed. She waited and waited, but no one opened it to her. And as she stood there all the loneliness came back to her and she thought that if her mother knew that she was standing there with a door closed to her she would come back from the Dead.

Then Girl-go-with-the-Goats went where the Goats were. A big wooden cradle was in the shed, the cradle that Buttercup and Berry-bright had been rocked in, and that had been taken out of the house. She found the cradle and she lay down in it. She covered herself all over with dried fern, and she looked out through the door that would not close. She thought and thought of the hundreds and hundreds of strange things that were outside. She slept, but she wakened up sometimes, and she saw the black Goats and the brown Goats and the white Goats standing up or lying down, and she wished that she could be as contented as the Goats.


Robinson Crusoe Written Anew for Children  by James Baldwin

I Undertake a New Venture

I HAD grown very tired of being a sailor. I was so tired of it that I made up my mind to try something else.

It happened that I was then in Brazil. I bought some land there and began to open a plantation. The ground was rich, and it would be easy to raise tobacco and sugar cane.

But I needed many things. I must have plows and hoes and a sugar mill. Above all I must have men to do the work on the plantation.

But neither men nor tools could I get in Brazil.

I sent to London for the tools. I tried to buy some slaves of the planters near me, but they had not enough for themselves.

"We will tell you what to do," they said. "We will fit out a trading vessel for Africa. We will put aboard of it everything that you need. As for your part, you shall be the manager of the business; and you shall do the trading for us. You need not put in a penny of your own."


"But how is that going to help me?" I asked.

"Listen, and we will tell you," they said. "With the goods which we send, you will buy as man black slaves as the ship will hold. You will bring them here, and we will divide them equally. You shall share with us, just as though you had paid the money."

The plan pleased me very much. I figured that each one of us would have thirty or forty slaves.

It was very foolish of me to go to sea again; but the offer was so good that I could not say No.

The ship was soon fitted out for the voyage. Her load was not very heavy. But there were plenty of goods such as were most fit for trade.

There were boxes of red and blue beads, of bits of glass, and of other trinkets. There were also knives and hatchets and little looking-glasses. We reckoned that each one of these would buy a slave.

The ship was to carry fourteen men besides the captain and myself. She was as fine a little vessel as ever sailed from the coast of Brazil.



The Twenty-Third Psalm

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.

He maketh me to lie down in green pastures;

He leadeth me beside the still waters;

He restoreth my soul.

He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for His name's sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,

I will fear no evil, for Thou art with me.

Thy rod and Thy staff they comfort me.

Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies;

Thou anointest my head with oil, my cup runneth over.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life.

And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.


  WEEK 4  


On the Shores of the Great Sea  by M. B. Synge

The Death of Caesar

"The last of all the Romans, fare thee well."


A FTER a three months' stay in Egypt, during which time, he made friends with Cleopatra, Cæsar returned to Rome. He had been made Dictator a second time, and was to hold the post for ten years. A thanksgiving of forty days was decreed, temples and statues were raised in his honour, a golden chair was placed in the Senate for him to sit in. He was called the "Father of his country," a name that Cicero had already borne, and four triumphs were celebrated in his honour.

In return Cæsar feasted the Roman people at twenty-two thousand tables, and entertained them at combats of wild animals and gladiators, beneath awnings of the richest silks. For Pompey had built a splendid theatre in Rome, in which lions and elephants, and men known as gladiators, who fought with swords, for the amusement of the people, engaged in combat before crowds of delighted spectators; for the Romans thought the shedding of blood was pleasing to their gods.

But Cæsar did more than this. He made new Roman laws, he tried to bridge over the terrible inequality, between the very rich and the very poor, he added hugely to the number of senators, he arranged the foreign provinces, and he rearranged the calendar. This was a very important piece of work. Up to this time the year had been made to consist of three hundred and fifty-five days; but as that did not exactly fit in, with the revolution of the earth round the sun, an extra month, had to be added at intervals. This made great confusion, and festivals for the harvest and vintage came three months before there was any corn or grapes.

The Julian calendar, as it was called, made the year to consist of three hundred and sixty-five days and six hours; which arrangement lasted for one thousand six hundred years after the death of Cæsar.

So Cæsar became undisputed master of this mighty empire of Rome. He had shown himself to be, not only one of the greatest conquerors, the world had ever seen, but one of the greatest statesmen. He governed Rome, as a king, in all but name. It was reported in the city, that he wished to be called king. Did he not dress in royal purple robes, had he not given himself all the airs of kingship?

One morning some one placed a crown of laurels, upon the head of his statue, which stood in the Forum. It was done publicly, in the midst of a vast crowd, in Cæsar's presence. The wreath was torn down. A few days later, as he was riding through the streets of Rome, he was saluted by the mob as "king." A stifled murmur of disapproval ran through the crowd.

"I am no king, but Cæsar," cried the Roman Dictator hastily.

Yet again the prize of kingship seemed within reach. Cæsar was in his golden chair, dressed in purple, and wearing a wreath of bay wrought in gold, presented by the senators. He was presiding over a popular festival, when suddenly the chief performer approached Cæsar, and drawing a small crown from his girdle he placed it on Cæsar's head, saying, "The people give you this, by my hand."

As Cæsar took off the crown, a loud burst of applause broke from the people.

"I am not king," he said in a loud voice; "the only king of the Romans is Jupiter." Saying which, he ordered the crown to be carried, to the temple of Jupiter, in the Capitol.

The question of kingship was over, but there was a spirit of unrest and distrust abroad in Rome. Men hated this supreme power; they thought Cæsar was a tyrant, and they wished to see Rome free. Cæsar knew there was danger, but he went daily to the Senate, unarmed, and without a guard.

"It is better to suffer death once, than always to live in fear of it," he had replied loftily to those who urged care.

Cicero—the foremost orator of his day—did not agree with such rashness, on the part of one, whose life was yet so precious to Rome.

"Be you watchful," he urged in a brilliant speech in the Senate, where Cæsar was sitting, but a few weeks before his murder. "All our lives are bound up in yours. With sorrow I have heard you say that you have lived long enough. For your country, you have not. Put away, I beseech you, this contempt of death. Be not wise at our expense. Your work is unfinished. It remains for you to rebuild the constitution. Live till this is done. Live till you see your country at peace. Your life shall continue fresh in the memory of ages to come: men will read with wonder of empire and provinces, of the Rhine, the ocean, and the Nile, of battles without number, of amazing victories, of countless monuments and triumphs; but unless this State be wisely established, your name will not live. Therefore, we beseech you, to watch over your own safety."

But Cæsar heeded not, and a secret plot, to kill him, went forward. An important meeting of the Senate had been called for the 15th of March. The day was known in ancient Rome, as the Ides—i.e.,  the middle day of the month. This was the day fixed for the murder of Cæsar. He had been warned by a soothsayer, that this should happen, and it is said he was restless and nervous, when the morning came. Unarmed, however, he shook off his uneasiness; he crossed the hall of his palace on the way to the senate-house. As he did so, his own statue fell and broke in pieces on the stones. Outside the senate-house, he met the soothsayer, who had warned him.

"The Ides of March are come," said Cæsar, laughing.

"Yes," answered the soothsayer in a low voice, "but they are not gone."

Cæsar entered the senate-house of Rome for the last time. The senators rose to do him honour, as he took his seat, in the golden chair. Men gathered round him. He knew them all. There was not one, who did not owe him gratitude. He had no suspicions.

Suddenly some one stabbed him in the throat. He started from his chair with a cry. He was surrounded by swords and gleaming steel. For a moment he tried to defend himself. Then seeing Brutus, his friend, with raised sword, he drew his cloak over his face, "And thou too, Brutus?" He uttered the words with his last breath as he fell dead at the foot of Pompey's statue, beside his golden chair.

The Senate rose in confusion and rushed out to proclaim to the Romans, that the tyrant was dead, and Rome was free, while the body of the great Cæsar lay alone in the senate-house, where but a few weeks ago, Cicero had told him, that every senator would die, before harm should reach him.

"We have killed the king," cried Cicero in bitterness of heart, "but the kingdom is with us still. We have taken away the tyrant, but the tyranny still lives."

The great Roman Republic was ended. It had narrowly escaped being a kingdom. It was now to be an empire under an emperor—an empire so vast and so important that the history of the world henceforth became the history of Rome.


A Child's Book of Myths and Enchantment Tales  by Margaret Evans Price

Pegasus and Bellerophon

P EGASUS was a wonderful winged horse which belonged to Minerva, the gray-eyed goddess who watched over heroes and gave wisdom and skill to all those who truly wished it.

Now it happened that after Minerva had caught and tamed Pegasus, the winged horse, she did not care to ride him herself, but knew no mortal who deserved to own him. So Minerva gave Pegasus to the nymphs to care for until she could find a youth brave enough and wise enough to ride him.

The nymphs were happy caring for Pegasus. They brushed him, combed his mane, and fed him, but they knew that by and by he would belong to a mortal master who would come and ride him away.

At last in Corinth there was born a little prince named Bellerophon. Glaucus, his father, had more skill in handling horses than any other man. As Bellerophon grew up, his father trained him and taught him all he knew, so that while Bellerophon was still very young he understood the ways of horses and learned to ride them.


While still very young, Bellerophon understood the ways of horses.

All this time the winged horse was without a master.

When Bellerophon was sixteen he began to long for travel and adventure in other lands, so he set out to visit a neighboring king.

Many friends came to bid the gallant young man good-by and wish him well, but there was one, named Proetus, who pretended to be Bellerophon's friend, but who really wished for him the worst that might happen. Proetus was jealous of Prince Bellerophon, and hoped that the young hero might not return from the journey.

It happened that Proetus was the son-in-law of Iobates, king of Lycia, and so, pretending friendship, Proetus gave Bellerophon a letter to carry to the king. Bellerophon, knowing nothing of the wicked words that were in this letter, put it carefully in the pocket of his tunic and rode gayly away.

When he reached Lycia, the home of Iobates, he found great sorrow in the land and all the people mourning. Each night a monster called the Chimaera came down the valley and carried off women and children, sheep and oxen. The mountain where he lived was white with the bones of his victims.

Bellerophon rode through the mourning city and came to the palace of the king. He presented himself to Iobates and gave him the letter.

As the king read, his face darkened and he seemed troubled, for the letter asked that Bellerophon should be put to death. The king did not like to heed the request in this strange letter, yet he wished to please his son-in-law. He knew that to kill a guest would be a wicked deed and against the laws of kindness to a visitor, and might also bring war on him from the land where the young prince lived. So he decided to send Bellerophon to slay the Chimaera, thinking he never could come back alive.

Bellerophon was not the least bit afraid, because he longed for adventure, and his heart was filled with a great desire to overcome this dark and evil monster, free the kingdom from fear, and make the mourning people happy.

But before starting out he found the oldest and wisest man in the whole kingdom and asked his advice. This aged man was named Polyidus. When he saw that Bellerophon was young and full of courage, yet humble enough to ask help from some one older, Polyidus told him a secret which no one else in the kingdom knew.

He told him of Minerva's winged horse, which he had once seen drinking at a spring deep in the forest.

"If you sleep all night in Minerva's temple," said the old man, "and offer gifts at her altar, she may help you to find the horse."

Bellerophon went to the temple, and as he slept he dreamed that he saw Minerva, clad in silver armor, her gray eyes shining as if they held sparks of fire. Plumes of blue and rose and violet floated from her helmet. She carried a golden bridle in her hand and told Bellerophon how he might reach the well where Pegasus came to drink.


Minerva, the Gray-Eyed Goddess

When Bellerophon awakened, he saw the golden bridle on the temple floor beside him, and knew Minerva really had visited him. Then with the bridle over his arm he set out on his journey through the forest. When he found the well, he hid himself among the bushes near by to watch for the coming of the winged horse. At length Bellerophon saw the winged horse flying far up in the sky. Nearer and nearer he wheeled until his silver feet touched the green grass beside the spring.

As Pegasus bent his head to drink, Bellerophon sprang from his hiding place and caught him by the mane. Before Pegasus knew what had happened, the golden bridle was slipped over his head, and Bellerophon had leaped to his back and was sitting between his outspread wings.

Pegasus rose into the air and darted wildly through the sky, now flying high among the clouds, now diving swiftly toward the earth. He reared and plunged, trying to shake Bellerophon from his back. He flew wildly over the sea and the mountains all the way to Africa and back. He flew over Thebes and over Corinth, and people looking up into the sky thought they saw some strange bird passing overhead.


Pegasus flew wildly over the sea and the mountains.

But Bellerophon understood how to handle fierce horses, for he remembered the things his father had taught him. At last Pegasus knew he had found his master and, tired and panting, sank down to the grass beside the well.

After Pegasus had rested, Bellerophon armed himself with a long spear and rode toward the mountain where dwelt the Chimaera.

There on a ledge of rock outside his cave the monster lay basking in the sunlight. He was partly like a lion and partly like a dragon. He lay with his lion's head resting between his paws and his long green tail, like that of a lizard, curled around him.

Bellerophon rode his horse as near as he dared to the ledge on which the dragon lay, then raised his spear to strike at the Chimaera, but the great beast blew out clouds of smoke and fire, and Pegasus drew back in terror.

As the monster drew in his breath for another puff, Bellerophon rode close to the ledge and with one strong thrust sent his spear through the heart of the Chimaera.


With one strong thrust, Bellerophon sent his spear through the heart of the Chimaera.

When the young prince came back to the palace, riding the winged horse and carrying the head of the dreadful Chimaera, there was wild rejoicing in Lycia. Everyone admired and praised Bellerophon, and crowded around the wonderful horse, amazed at his wings and his silver feet.

The young daughter of King Iobates, who came out on the portico of the palace to see the hero and his horse, fell in love with Bellerophon the moment she saw the young warrior sitting so proudly between the white wings of Pegasus. King Iobates led her to Bellerophon and gave her to him for his bride.

For a long time they were happy together. Bellerophon and Pegasus went on many adventures, and when Iobates died Bellerophon became king.

At last one day Bellerophon thought of a most daring adventure. He decided he would try to ride Pegasus to Mount Olympus and visit the gods.

Minerva appeared and warned him that the gods would be angry, but he mounted his horse and rose high into the clouds, urging Pegasus up toward the summit of Mount Olympus.

Jupiter looked down and, seeing the horse approaching, was angry to think that any mortal should dare approach the home of the gods. He caused a gadfly to light on Pegasus and sting his neck and his shoulders and his nose.

Pegasus was so startled by this that at once he reared and wheeled among the clouds, leaping wildly in the air, and Bellerophon was thrown from his back and dropped down to earth.

Minerva, causing him to land where the ground was soft, spared his life, but as long as he lived Bellerophon wandered, crippled and lonely, seeking all over the earth for his wonderful winged horse.

But Pegasus never again returned to him.


Walter de la Mare

The Old House

A very, very old house I know—

And ever so many people go,

Past the small lodge, forlorn and still,

Under the heavy branches, till

Comes the blank wall, and there's the door.

Go in they do; come out no more.

No voice says aught; no spark of light

Across that threshold cheers the sight;

Only the evening star on high

Less lonely makes a lonely sky,

As, one by one, the people go

Into that very old house I know.


  WEEK 4  


Understood Betsy  by Dorothy Canfield Fisher

Betsy Holds the Reins

Part 1 of 3

You can imagine, perhaps, the dreadful terror of Elizabeth Ann as the train carried her along toward Vermont and the horrible Putney Farm! It had happened so quickly—her satchel packed, the telegram sent, the train caught—that she had not had time to get her wits together, assert herself, and say that she would not  go there! Besides, she had a sinking notion that perhaps they wouldn't pay any attention to her if she did. The world had come to an end now that Aunt Frances wasn't there to take care of her! Even in the most familiar air she could only half breathe without Aunt Frances! And now she was not even being taken to Putney Farm! She was being sent!

She shrank together in her seat, more and more frightened as the end of her journey came nearer, and looked out dismally at the winter landscape, thinking it hideous with its brown bare fields, its brown bare trees, and the quick-running little streams hurrying along, swollen with the January thaw which had taken all the snow from the hills. She had heard her elders say about her so many times that she could not stand the cold, that she shivered at the very thought of cold weather, and certainly nothing could look colder than that bleak country into which the train was now slowly making its way.

The engine puffed and puffed with great laboring breaths that shook Elizabeth Ann's diaphragm up and down, but the train moved more and more slowly. Elizabeth Ann could feel under her feet how the floor of the car was tipped up as it crept along the steep incline. "Pretty stiff grade here?" said a passenger to the conductor.

"You bet!" he assented. "But Hillsboro is the next station and that's at the top of the hill. We go down after that to Rutland." He turned to Elizabeth Ann—"Say, little girl, didn't your uncle say you were to get off at Hillsboro? You'd better be getting your things together."

Poor Elizabeth Ann's knees knocked against each other with fear of the strange faces she was to encounter, and when the conductor came to help her get off, he had to carry the white, trembling child as well as her satchel. But there was only one strange face there,—not another soul in sight at the little wooden station. A grim-faced old man in a fur cap and heavy coat stood by a lumber wagon.

"This is her, Mr. Putney," said the conductor, touching his cap, and went back to the train, which went away shrieking for a nearby crossing and setting the echoes ringing from one mountain to another.

There was Elizabeth Ann alone with her much-feared Great-uncle Henry. He nodded to her, and drew out from the bottom of the wagon a warm, large cape, which he slipped over her shoulders. "The women folks were afraid you'd git cold drivin'," he explained. He then lifted her high to the seat, tossed her satchel into the wagon, climbed up himself, and clucked to his horses. Elizabeth Ann had always before thought it an essential part of railway journeys to be much kissed at the end and asked a great many times how you had "stood the trip."

She sat very still on the high lumber seat, feeling very forlorn and neglected. Her feet dangled high above the floor of the wagon. She felt herself to be in the most dangerous place she had ever dreamed of in her worst dreams. Oh, why wasn't Aunt Frances there to take care of her! It was just like one of her bad dreams—yes, it was horrible! She would fall, she would roll under the wheels and be crushed to . . . She looked up at Uncle Henry with the wild, strained eyes of nervous terror which always brought Aunt Frances to her in a rush to "hear all about it," to sympathize, to reassure.

Uncle Henry looked down at her soberly, his hard, weather-beaten old face quite unmoved. "Here, you drive, will you, for a piece?" he said briefly, putting the reins into her hands, hooking his spectacles over his ears, and drawing out a stubby pencil and a bit of paper. "I've got some figgering to do. You pull on the left-hand rein to make 'em go to the left and t'other way for t'other way, though 'tain't likely we'll meet any teams."

Elizabeth Ann had been so near one of her wild screams of terror that now, in spite of her instant absorbed interest in the reins, she gave a queer little yelp. She was all ready with the explanation, her conversations with Aunt Frances having made her very fluent in explanations of her own emotions. She would tell Uncle Henry about how scared she had been, and how she had just been about to scream and couldn't keep back that one . . . But Uncle Henry seemed not to have heard her little howl, or, if he had, didn't think it worth conversation, for he . . . oh, the horses were certainly  going to one side! She hastily decided which was her right hand (she had never been forced to know it so quickly before) and pulled furiously on that rein. The horses turned their hanging heads a little, and, miraculously, there they were in the middle of the road again.

Elizabeth Ann drew a long breath of relief and pride, and looked to Uncle Henry for praise. But he was busily setting down figures as though he were getting his 'rithmetic lesson for the next day and had not noticed . . . Oh, there they were going to the left again! This time, in her flurry, she made a mistake about which hand was which and pulled wildly on the left line! The horses docilely walked off the road into a shallow ditch, the wagon tilted . . . help! Why didn't Uncle Henry help! Uncle Henry continued intently figuring on the back of his envelope.

Elizabeth Ann, the perspiration starting out on her forehead, pulled on the other line. The horses turned back up the little slope, the wheel grated sickeningly against the wagon-box—she was sure  they would tip over! But there! somehow there they were in the road, safe and sound, with Uncle Henry adding up a column of figures. If he only knew, thought the little girl, if he only knew  the danger he had been in, and how he had been saved . . . ! But she must think of some way to remember, for sure, which her right hand was, and avoid that hideous mistake again.

And then suddenly something inside Elizabeth Ann's head stirred and moved. It came to her, like a clap, that she needn't know which was right or left at all. If she just pulled the way she wanted them to go—the horses would never know whether it was the right or the left rein!

It is possible that what stirred inside her head at that moment was her brain, waking up. She was nine years old, and she was in the third A grade at school, but that was the first time she had ever had a whole thought of her very own. At home, Aunt Frances had always known exactly what she was doing, and had helped her over the hard places before she even knew they were there; and at school her teachers had been carefully trained to think faster than the scholars. Somebody had always been explaining things to Elizabeth Ann so industriously that she had never found out a single thing for herself before. This was a very small discovery, but an original one. Elizabeth Ann was as excited about it as a mother-bird over the first egg that hatches.

She forgot how afraid she was of Uncle Henry, and poured out to him her discovery. "It's not right or left that matters!" she ended triumphantly; "it's which way you want to go!" Uncle Henry looked at her attentively as she talked, eyeing her sidewise over the top of one spectacle-glass. When she finished—"Well, now, that's so," he admitted, and returned to his arithmetic.


Uncle Henry looked at her, eyeing her sidewise over the top of one spectacle-glass.

It was a short remark, shorter than any Elizabeth Ann had ever heard before. Aunt Frances and her teachers always explained matters at length. But it had a weighty, satisfying ring to it. The little girl felt the importance of having her statement recognized. She turned back to her driving.

The slow, heavy plow horses had stopped during her talk with Uncle Henry. They stood as still now as though their feet had grown to the road. Elizabeth Ann looked up at the old man for instructions. But he was deep in his figures. She had been taught never to interrupt people, so she sat still and waited for him to tell her what to do.

But, although they were driving in the midst of a winter thaw, it was a pretty cold day, with an icy wind blowing down the back of her neck. The early winter twilight was beginning to fall, and she felt rather empty. She grew very tired of waiting, and remembered how the grocer's boy at home had started his horse. Then, summoning all her courage, with an apprehensive glance at Uncle Henry's arithmetical silence, she slapped the reins up and down on the horses' backs and made the best imitation she could of the grocer's boy's cluck. The horses lifted their heads, they leaned forward, they put one foot before the other . . . they were off! The color rose hot on Elizabeth Ann's happy face. If she had started a big red automobile she would not have been prouder. For it was the first thing she had ever done all herself . . . every bit . . . every smitch! She had thought of it and she had done it. And it had worked!


The Adventures of Prickly Porky  by Thornton Burgess

Peter Rabbit Has Some Startling News

L ITTLE Mrs. Peter Rabbit, who used to be Little Miss Fuzzytail, sat at the edge of the dear Old Briar-patch, anxiously looking over towards the Green Forest. She was worried. There was no doubt about it. Little Mrs. Peter was very much worried. Why didn't Peter come home? She did wish that he would be content to stay close by the dear Old Briar-patch. For her part, she couldn't see why under the sun he wanted to go way over to the Green Forest. He was always having dreadful adventures and narrow escapes over there, and yet, in spite of all she could say, he would persist in going there. She didn't feel easy in her mind one minute while he was out of her sight. To be sure he always turned up all right, but she couldn't help feeling that sometime his dreadful curiosity would get him into trouble that he couldn't get out of, and so every time he went to the Green Forest, she was sure, absolutely sure, that she would never see him again.

Peter used to laugh at her and tell her that she was a foolish little dear, and that he was perfectly able to take care of himself. Then, when he saw how worried she was, he would promise to be very, very careful and never do anything rash or foolish. But he wouldn't promise not to go to the Green Forest. No, Sir, Peter wouldn't promise that. You see, he has so many friends over there, and there is always so much news to be gathered that he just couldn't keep away. Once or twice he had induced Mrs. Peter to go with him, but she had been frightened almost out of her skin every minute, for it seemed to her that there was danger lurking behind every tree and under every bush. It was all very well for Chatterer the Red Squirrel and Happy Jack the Gray Squirrel, who could jump from tree to tree, but she didn't think it a safe and proper place for a sensible Rabbit, and she said so.

This particular morning she was unusually anxious. Peter had been gone all night. Usually he was home by the time Old Mother West Wind came down from the Purple Hills and emptied her children, the Merry Little Breezes, out of her big bag to play all day on the Green Meadows, but this morning Old Mother West Wind had been a long time gone about her business, and still there was no sign of Peter.

"Something has happened. I just know something has happened!" she wailed.

"Oh, Peter, Peter, Peter Rabbit

Why will you be so heedless?

Why will you take such dreadful risks,

So foolish and so needless?"

"Don't worry. Peter is smart enough to take care of himself," cried one of the Merry Little Breezes, who happened along just in time to overhear her. "He'll be home pretty soon. In fact, I think I see him coming now."

Mrs. Peter looked in the direction that the Merry Little Breeze was looking, and sure enough there was Peter. He was heading straight for the dear Old Briar-patch, and he was running as if he were trying to show how fast he could run. Mrs. Peter's heart gave a frightened thump. "It must be that Reddy or Granny Fox or Old Man Coyote is right at his heels," thought she, but look as hard as she would, she could see nothing to make Peter run so.

In a few minutes he reached her side. His eyes were very wide, and it was plain to see that he was bursting with important news.

"What is it, Peter? Do tell me quick! Have you had another narrow escape?" gasped little Mrs. Peter.

Peter nodded while he panted for breath. "There's another stranger in the Green Forest, a terrible looking fellow without legs or head or tail, and he almost caught me!" panted Peter.


Sir Walter Scott

The Lighthouse

Far in the bosom of the deep,

O'er these wild shelves my watch I keep;

A ruddy gem of changeful light,

Bound on the dusky brow of night,

The seaman bids my lustre hail,

And scorns to strike his timorous sail.


  WEEK 4  


Hurlbut's Story of the Bible  by Jesse Lyman Hurlbut

How Joshua Conquered the Land of Canaan

Joshua ix: 1, to xi: 23.

dropcap image HE news of all that Joshua and the men of Israel had done at Jericho and at Ai, how they had destroyed those cities and slain their people, went through all the land. Everywhere the tribes of Canaan prepared to fight these strangers who had so suddenly and so boldly entered their country.

Near the middle of the mountain region, between Jerusalem and Shechem, were four cities of a race called either the Hivites, or the Gibeonites, from their chief city, Gibeon. These people felt that they could not resist the Israelites; so they undertook to make peace with them. Their cities were less than a day's journey from the camp at Gilgal, and quite near to Ai; but they came to Joshua at the camp, looking as if they had made a long journey.

They were wearing old and ragged garments, and shoes worn out; and they brought dry and mouldy bread, and old bags of food, and wine-skins torn and mended. They met Joshua and the elders of Israel in the camp, and said to them:

"We live in a country far away; but we have heard of the great things that you have done; the journey you have made, and the cities you have taken on the other side of the river Jordan; and now we have come to offer you our friendship and to make peace with you." And Joshua said to them, "Who are you? And from what land do you come?"


The Gibeonites come to Joshua.

"We have come," they said, "from a country far away. See this bread. We took it hot from the oven, and now it is mouldy. These wine-skins were new when we filled them, and you see they are old. Look at our garments and our shoes, all worn out and patched."

Joshua and the elders did not ask the Lord what to do, but made an agreement with these men to have peace with them, not to destroy their cities, and to spare the lives of their people. And a very few days after making peace with them they found that the four cities where they lived were very near.

At first the Israelite rulers were very angry, and were inclined to break their agreement, but afterward they said:

"We will keep our promise to these people, though they have deceived us. We will let them live, but they shall be made our servants, and shall do the hard work for the camp and for the Tabernacle."

Even this was better than to be killed, and to have their cities destroyed; and the Gibeonite people were glad to save their lives. So from that time the people of the four Gibeonite cities carried burdens, and drew water, and cut wood, and served the camp of Israel.

The largest city near to the camp at Gilgal was Jerusalem, among the mountains, where its king, Melchizedek, in the days of Abraham, five hundred years before, had been a priest of the Lord, and had blessed Abraham, as we read in Story 6. But now, in the days of Joshua, the people of that city worshipped idols and were very wicked.

When the king of Jerusalem heard that the Gibeonites, who lived near him, had made peace with Israel, he sent to the kings of Hebron and Lachish and several other cities, and said to them:

"Come, let us unite our armies into one great army and fight the Gibeonites and destroy them; for they have made peace with our enemies, the people of Israel."

As soon as the people of Gibeon heard this they sent to Joshua, saying:

"Come quickly and help us; for we are your servants; and the king of Jerusalem is coming with a great army to kill us all, and destroy our cities. The whole country is in arms against us; come at once, before it is too late!"

Joshua was a very prompt man, swift in all his acts. At once he called out his army, and marched all night up the mountains. He came suddenly upon the five kings and their army at a place called Beth-horon. There a great battle was fought, Joshua leading his men against the Canaanites. He did not give his enemies time to form in line, but fell upon them so suddenly that they were driven into confusion, and fled before the men of Israel.

And the Lord helped his people by a storm which drove great hailstones down on the Canaanites; so that more were killed by the hailstones than by the sword. It is written in an old song that on that day Joshua said before all his men:

"Sun, stand thou still over Gibeon.

And thou, moon, in the valley of Ajalon,

And the sun stood still, and the moon stayed,

Until the people had taken vengeance upon their enemies."

If ever in all the history of the world there was a battle when the sun might well stand still, and the day be made longer, to make the victory complete, it was that day more than any other. For on that day the land was won by the people of the Lord. If Israel had been defeated and destroyed, instead of Canaan, then the Bible would never have been written, the worship of the true God would have been blotted out, and the whole world would have worshipped idols. The battle that day was for the salvation of the world as well as of Israel. So this was the greatest battle in its results that the world has ever seen. There have been many battles where more men fought, and more soldiers were slain, than at the battle of Beth-horon. But no battle in all the world had such an effect in the years and the ages after, as this battle.

After the victory Joshua followed his enemies as they fled, and killed many of them, until their armies were broken up and destroyed. The five kings who had led against Joshua were found hidden in a cave, were brought out and were slain, so that they might no more trouble the Israelites. By this one victory all the part of the land of Canaan on the south was won, though there were a few small fights afterward.

Then Joshua turned to the north, and led his army by a swift march against the kings who had united there to fight the Israelites. As suddenly as before he had fallen on the five kings at Beth-horon, he fell upon these kings and their army, near the little lake in the far north of Canaan, called "the waters of Merom." There another great victory was won; and after this it was easy to conquer the land. Everywhere the tribes of Canaan were made to submit to the Israelites, until all the mountain country was under Joshua's rule.

In the conquest of Canaan, there were six great marches and six battles; three in the lands on the east of the Jordan, while Moses was still living, the victories over the Amorites, the Midianites, and the people of Bashan, on the northeast, and there on the west of the Jordan, the victories at Jericho, at Beth-horon, and Lake Merom, under Joshua.

But even after these marchings and victories, it was a long time before all the land was taken by the Israelites.


The Sandman: His Ship Stories  by Willliam J. Hopkins

The Rigging Story

O NCE upon a time there was a wide river that ran into the ocean, and beside it was a little city. And in that city was a wharf where great ships came from far countries. And a narrow road led down a very steep hill to that wharf, and anybody that wanted to go to the wharf had to go down the steep hill on the narrow road, for there wasn't any other way. And because ships had come there for a great many years, and all the sailors and all the captains and all the men who had business with the ships had to go on that narrow road, the flagstones that made the sidewalks were much worn. That was a great many years ago.

The river and the ocean are there yet, as they always have been and always will be; and the city is there, but it is a different kind of a city from what it used to be. And the wharf is slowly falling down, for it is not used now; and the narrow road down the steep hill is all grown up with weeds and grass.

A great many years ago, when the ships still came to the wharf, a man had made a shipyard beside that wide river. And, in that shipyard, he had built the brig Industry  for Captain Jonathan and Captain Jacob; and he had launched her and she lay beside the wharf of the shipyard, but she had no masts in, and no rigging and no sails.

So the master of the shipyard went to that little city, and he found the men who rig ships and put in the masts, and he told them to come to his shipyard and put in the masts of the brig Industry  and rig her in every way that a brig ought to be rigged. And the riggers of ships heard him and said that they would come to the shipyard. And they came.

Then they went on the Industry  and took two great strong sticks, and each one was so big that a little boy could hardly reach around it with both arms. And these sticks they tied together at the top, and they tied a block with three pulleys in it at the top where the sticks were tied together. Then they put a rope through the block and through another block, around and around, until they had the rope going over all the pulleys and coming out at the end. These blocks make it easier to hoist anything up, when the men pull on the end of the rope.

And they got the sticks standing up, almost straight, but straddling, so that each of the great sticks had its foot near the edge of the deck. And there was another rope that went from the top where the sticks were tied together and was fastened to the big thing that was meant for fastening the anchor chains. The two sticks fastened together at the top are called a pair of shears, or just a shears, and the rope was fastened to them and to the ship to keep them from falling over. And they were put so that the block at the top, that had the rope running around and around, was almost over the hole in the deck that was meant for the foremast to go in.

Then they had to get the foremast. And, for this, the master of the shipyard had a big log all ready. It was not a live-oak log, but it had been a pine-tree; for live-oak is too heavy for masts. And the master of the shipyard had had his men peeling the bark off of it, and making it all smooth and the right shape for a mast. So the riggers took that mast.

They rolled it close beside the Industry, and they fastened a great strong rope around it just above its middle with a loop sticking out. But the bottom was bigger around than the top, so that the bottom was heavier, and the mast would hang almost straight up and down. Then they hooked the hook of the other block into the loop, so that the rope ran from the block at the top of the shears, around one of the pulleys in the other block that was hooked to the mast, back to the block at the top of the shears, and around a pulley in that block, and back to the mast again, and so on, until it had been around every pulley in either block; and then it came down and went to the capstan. The capstan is the machine that the sailors use to pull up the anchor, and it is fastened to the deck. It is very much like the thing that they use in moving houses, that a horse walks around at the end of a long stick, only the sailors walk around the capstan, and each sailor pushes on a bar.

Then, when the riggers were all ready, three of them began to walk around the capstan, pushing on the bars, and another held on to the end of the rope. And the mast was raised, very slowly and very carefully, and some more men kept it from rubbing on the side of the vessel. And, at last, it was high enough to slide on to the deck, and it was just over the hole that it was meant to go into, but it was not straight up, so that it could not go in. Then the men hoisted some more, very carefully, until the mast was nearly straight up and was swinging clear of the deck. And they stopped to rest.

Then the riggers went to the mast and looked at it, and they saw that it was small enough to go into the mast-hole. And as many men as could got around it, and took hold of it, and they guided it while the other men lowered on the rope very slowly, and, at last, the end of the mast went into the hole.

Then the men stopped lowering on the rope, and the other men got long poles, and they pushed with the poles on the upper part of the mast and made it straight up and down. And the men who had the rope began lowering again, and the mast went down easily. But it was lowered very slowly, and every little while some of the men shifted their poles to a place higher up; for the mast was going down all the time.

And some of the men went down below, into the bottom part of the brig, where they could take hold of the lower end of the mast and guide it through the hole in the little bit of a deck and into the hole that was made for it, in the keel. For a square hole had been made in the keel, but it didn't go all the way through, for that would let the water in; and the bottom end of the mast was squared off to fit in that square hole. And the mast kept coming down, slowly, and the men guided it, and at last the square end went into the square hole, and it fitted tightly. They call that stepping the mast. And the men saw that it was all right and then they went up on deck again.

Now the mast already had the crosstrees fitted to the top of it, and all the iron straps and bands and hooks. The crosstrees are a sort of platform, with a square hole in front of the mast for the foot of the topmast to go in. The crosstrees have two other holes, one on each side, for the rigging to go through. They call these the "lubber-holes," because landlubbers, or men who are not used to being on the water, try to go through them instead of going around over the edge of the crosstrees, where the sailors go.

And they pulled the rigging up tight and fastened it to the straps that the blacksmith had made for it, and they put little ropes across and made it like a ladder, so that the sailors could run up it. And they fastened all the great ropes and stays that belong to the foremast.

And the riggers put in the mainmast, in the same way, and fastened all the stays that belong there, and made them tight. And they put all the upper masts in place, and fastened the stays that belong there, and the rigging and they put another stick on the end of the bowsprit, and under it they fastened all the ropes and chains that belong there.

A brig has only two masts. So, when the riggers had the foremast and the mainmast in place with all the rigging that belongs, they got up the yards. Yards are great sticks that go across the masts, and the sails hang from them. And they got the yards up, with all the iron straps and rings and hooks that belong to them, and they fastened the ropes, so that the sailors could hoist those that would have to be hoisted, and could pull them around. And when the yards were in place, the Industry  was all done but her sails. She didn't have any sails yet.

So the master of the shipyard went to the city again, and he found the sail-makers. And he told them that he would like to have them come up to the shipyard and measure the Industry  for a suit of sails. For a vessel has to be measured for her sails just as a man has to be measured for a suit of clothes. And the sailmakers heard him and said that they would come.

And the sailmakers came, and they measured the places where the sails would go, every one of them. And when they had measured, and got them right, they went back to the city and to the sail-loft.

A sail-loft is a great big room where the men cut the sails and sew them together. The canvas that they make the sails of comes in very long strips, like cloth. For canvas is a kind of cloth, very hard and strong. And the sail-makers marked out, with chalk, on the floor of the sail-loft, the sail that they were going to make. Then they laid the long strips of canvas down, and cut them right, and they sewed the edges of the strips together and bound the edges of the sail with strong rope. And that sail was done and they laid out another sail and made it in the same way. And so they did until they had made all the sails that the Industry  would need.

When the sails were all made, the sail-makers got two big wagons, and they folded up the sails as small as they could and they put them into the wagons; and the sails filled the two wagons. And they went to the shipyard with the sails. Then they fitted them on to the Industry, each one in its place. And when they were all in place, the Industry  had nearly square sails hanging from the yards on her two masts, and the jibs in front of those, on the stays that ran from the foremast to the bowsprit; and a little sail, called the spanker, out behind, where the spanker ought to be. And there were spare sails, that the men stowed away in a cupboard, or locker, down below.


And the sails were all on and the rigging all in place, and the anchors and the great chains were there, and the Industry  was all ready for Captain Jonathan and Captain Jacob.


The Industry was all ready

And that's all.


George MacDonald

Up and Down

The sun is gone down,

And the moon's in the sky;

But the sun will come up,

And the moon be laid by.

The flower is asleep,

But it is not dead;

When the morning shines,

It will lift its head.

When the winter comes

It will die—no, no;

It will only hide

From the frost and snow.

Sure is the summer,

Sure is the sun;

The night and the winter—

Away they run.