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´╗┐Title: The Book of One Syllable
Author: Bakewell, Esther
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "The Book of One Syllable" ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.

file was made using scans of public domain works in the
International Children's Digital Library.)

Transcriber's Note: Minor typographical errors have been corrected
without note. Dialect spellings, contractions and discrepancies have
been retained.

[Illustration: A LETTER OF ONE SYLLABLE. _Front._]



Esther Bakewell





Fast and far is the stream of time flown on, yet there are thoughts of
dear friends and of by-gone things that will not yield to its course.
Some friends have long been lost, but there are those who still sail
the stream, to whom these scenes from the past will bring back
"thoughts of days that are gone." They will bring back thoughts of her
whose sails were once set with theirs, and who feels that not one kind
word that was then said, not one kind deed that was then done, can the
stream wash from her mind, till she, too, shall be lost in the dark
gulf to which that stream must lead.

Four of these tales have no hook to the past. These are told by a young
boy and girl, who have been taught to write thoughts as soon as they
could hold their pens.


Though in words of one syllable, "The Book of One Syllable" is not
meant for a child when first he learns to read; it is meant for him
when he knows such words at sight. The tales are told in these small
words, that a child need not have to stop to spell, but that he may be
led on and on till he comes to the end.

May he feel when he does come to the end, that to read has not been a



THE WRECK OF A FEAST                  1

THE AIR                              23

SAIB, THE BLACK BOY                  28

THE EARTH                            65

A FALL FROM THE CLIFFS               68

THE MOON                             77

THE MAN IN THE MOON                  80

FRANK HART                           87

THE LOST ONES                       105

THE SUN                             117

THE DOLL'S HEAD                     120

PLAY NOT WITH FIRE                  143


WHAT A PRICE FOR A BOX!             160



What a sad sight it is to see a young child who does not know how to
keep a check on the wish that tempts him to do wrong. The first rule
that they who love a child should teach him, is the _rule of self_. It
is the want of this self-rule that is the cause of so much that is bad
in the world. It is this that makes girls and boys think more of what
they want to do, than of what they ought to do; and each time they give
way to it, they find it more hard not to yield the next time; and thus
they go on till they are grown-up folks. They who would not like to
grow up in this bad way must take great care while they are young not
to think so much of self.

The sense of taste is the sense that a child likes best to use. It
would be strange to see a child who did not like cake, or tart, or
fruit, or most sweet things. But a child should know when it is right
to eat, and when it is right not to eat: he should know that he ought
not to touch nice things that are not meant for him.

The tale we have to tell is of a young girl who had not this sense of
right so strong as it ought to have been. She knew what it was right to
do, and she knew what it was wrong to do, but yet the sense of right
was not at all times quite strong. The name of this girl was Ruth Grey.

[Illustration: RUTH GREY. Page 4.]

Now there was a room in Mr. Grey's house known by the name of the
green-house room, and here were put a few choice plants that could not
bear the cold air. In this room too there was a large stand, on which
were set out all the sweet things when Mrs. Grey had friends to dine or
take tea with her. Here they were all put, to be brought out at the
right time. The door of this room was kept shut, and made fast with a
lock and key. Ruth had seen some of these nice things put on the stand,
but she had not seen all, and she had a great wish to see them. She
thought, if the door should not be shut, she would just peep in. She
went twice to the door, but she found it fast. When she went a third
time she found the key left in, and as she thought she could turn the
key, she did, and went in.

Now it was wrong in Ruth to want to go near this room, as she knew
quite well that Mrs. Grey did not wish her to go in. Once when she was
near the door she thought she heard some one, and then she ran off as
fast as she could. This she would not have done if she had not felt
sure it was wrong to go in that room.

But now she was in! and what did she see there? Why, she saw the stand
quite full of all sorts of nice sweet things. There were sponge cakes,
and plum cakes, and queen cakes; there were two turn-outs, and whips
and creams of all sorts; and there was a cake hid in red jam, with
small thin white things put all up and down it, which stuck out. What
could _this_ be? She was sure it was jam, and yet she was sure jam was
too soft to stand up in that way: she would just touch it. She _did_
touch it, and she felt there was some hard thing in it: _that_ could
not be jam! It was strange! She would just like to know what it was:
she must taste a small bit of the top--_that_ could not spoil it, and
she did _so_ much want to know. She _did_ taste--it _was_ jam, spread
on a sponge cake.

"A sponge cake! well, this _is_ odd," thought Ruth. "I will just taste
a bit: the jam will hide where I take it from."

She then tore a bit from the cake: it was more than she meant to take;
but it was done, and she could not help it now. In vain did she try to
hide the place--she could not do it; for if she took jam from this
place, the cake was left bare on that. And the shape of the cake was
not the same as it had been. She thought she would try to make that
side of the cake on which the jam still was, like the side on which it
was not; so off she took a piece from that side too. The cake was now
in such a state that she could not hope to hide what she had done; and
_she_ was in such a state that she did not seem to care at all.

She next took up a spoon, and took a large piece from one of the
turn-outs. She then went to the plum cake, and to the grapes, and to
all the fruit. In short, she went from dish to dish, till there was not
one in which she had not put her spoon.

Then she stood still--she stood to see the wreck she had made. Long she
did not stand: a rush of thought gave wings to her feet, and she fled
to hide in some place where she could not, she thought, be found. She
fled to a tool-house in the yard; but she had not been half an hour
there when she heard the voice of Mrs. Grey; she heard her step, too,
come near and more near, till at length it came close to the door of
the tool-house.

"Ruth, my dear," said Mrs. Grey, "why did you come out here? But I am
glad to have found you, for I want you to come with me and take a plant
to the green-house room."

"Oh, no, no! not in there--do not go in there!" cried Ruth, with a face
quite pale.

Mrs. Grey could not think what Ruth meant, so she set off at once to
the green-house room, and told Ruth that she must come too. But when
Mrs. Grey had got to the door, no Ruth was to be seen. She then went in
the room, and what she saw there told her more than words could tell.

"Ruth!" said she, "can you have done this?"

It was grief to think that a child of hers could have done this; but,
much as she felt hurt, it was not for the loss of these things. Mrs.
Grey sat down, and for a long time she did not move; at length she got
up with the air of one who had made up her mind what it would be best
for her to do.

And Ruth--where was she? What did she think, what did she feel, what
did she do all the time Mrs. Grey was in the green-house room?

What she felt was a kind of grief, such as she had not felt till that
time: it was a sense of _deep shame_. So much did she dread to see Mrs.
Grey, that she hid her face in her hands, as though Mrs. Grey were near
her. Then all at once she thought that Mrs. Grey would come back to
speak to her.

At this thought she sprang up, ran to her own room, shut the door, and
fell down on the bed. Here she lay for a long time, with her face hid
in the bed-clothes: her tears fell fast, and her sobs were loud. In
this sad state she lay for a long time, till at last she went to sleep.

How long she had slept she could not tell, but when she rose up in the
bed it was quite dark. At first she could not think how she came to be
there, but all at once the green-house scene came back to her mind.
Once more she fell down on the bed to hide her face, though no one was
there to see it.

Soon there came a stream of light through a chink in the door: it grew
more strong, till at length it came in the room in a full blaze. Ruth
gave a quick glance, and saw that it was not Mrs. Grey, but Mrs. Grey's

"Miss Ruth," said the maid, "I am sent to bid you go down stairs: the
first course is come out of the room, and Mrs. Grey bids me tell you to
go down to see the sweet things. You are to go at once."

Poor Ruth! what did she feel _then_? She took hold of the maid's hand,
and said,

"Oh, do not, do not let me go! pray do not let me go!"

"You must go, and go at once too, Miss Ruth," said the maid, as she
drew her near the door. "You must come, miss. And see, here is James
sent to take you down."

There was no help for it: down stairs she went, and soon she found that
she was in the room. _There she stood!_ full of shame and deep grief!
And there was spread out each dish of sweets, just as she had left
it--each dish spread out with as much care as if it had been right. The
eyes of all were on Ruth--in vain did she try to shrink from their

There was a pause; then Mrs. Grey said, "Ruth, come here, and stand
where all my friends can see you."

She came with slow step, her head bent down, and her eyes cast on the

"I grieve to tell you, my friends," said Mrs. Grey, "that it is
Ruth--that it is this child whom I love so much--that it is _she_ who
has made all this wreck."

There was a pause once more; and there stood Ruth! All had their eyes
on her. At length Mrs. Grey said,

"Now leave the room, Ruth."

Ruth did not stay, she was too glad to be gone at once.

The next day, nor the next, did Mrs. Grey speak of the past, and all
things went on as they were wont to do. But on the third day, when the
first course was gone, a dish that had been in the green-house room was
put near her. It was just in the same state in which Ruth had left it.
Ruth could not bear the sight of it, so she got up and ran out of the

"Poor Ruth!" said Mr. Grey to his wife, "she feels this so much! and to
a child like her, who _can_ feel, I think that your plan seems the best
way to cure her."

It _was_ the best way. Ruth felt all this much more than she would have
felt the stroke of a whip: she felt it _in her mind_.

For a long time, for months and for years, she could not bear to see a
jam cake or a turn-out, nor one of the things like those that had been
in the green-house room. When she _did_ see them, she felt a sting of
mind that gave her a great deal of pain. Ruth had one young friend who
knew what she had done; and this friend had so much love for Ruth, so
much real grief for what she knew Ruth felt, that when young friends
came to play with her, she took care to beg that there should not be
_jam cake_.


What is air? Look up and look round; _there_ is air, though it is not
to be seen. It fills all things. The glass jug which seems to be quite
void is still full of air.

[Illustration: THE LESSON ON AIR. Page 23.]

It is the air we feel when the wind blows. We do not see the wind, but
it can blow with such force as to throw down trees. When the wind blows
it makes ships sail on the seas to all parts of the world, and brings
them back home. It turns mills, to grind corn; and in some parts they
use the force of wind to do all kinds of work. The wind is but the air,
and it does all these things, though it is not to be seen.

But the air does more than this. If it were not for the air we could
not live. It is the air we breathe; and if the breath were stopt, we
all know that we should die. How it is that the air does this would
take a long time to tell, and you must learn a great deal more of such
things than you have yet done, to know why air keeps up life. But so it
is. The air is the breath.

It is the breath, too, that makes us warm and keeps us so; for if it
were not for the air we breathe, we should be as cold as stones.

The air it is that makes fire burn. The fire in the grate would soon go
out if it were not for the air. The flame in a lamp burns dim when it
has not so much air as it wants; and when the air is shut from the
flame it goes out.

Trees and plants could not live if they had not air. The birds fly by
means of the air, which helps to keep them up, while their wings flap
up and down. If there were no air, they could not rise from the ground
at all, nor could they live if they did not breathe.

It is the air which makes sound. We could not hear men talk, nor bells
ring, if the air did not bring the sound to our ears.

Of such great use is the air, though we can not see it, that no one
thing could move, or be heard, or live, if it were not with us and
round us.


In a far-off part of the world there is a place where the boys and
girls have not the white fair skins that boys and girls have here, but
whose skins are quite black, and whose hair is short and thick, like
black wool. Some of these poor things know not what it is to have a
home, they know not what it is to have kind friends, they know not what
it is to do as they would like to do: they must do all that he who has
bought them bids them do.

Yes, he who has bought them! for these poor boys and girls can be
bought and sold. They are put on board ships that sail far from the
homes of their hearts; they are torn from all they like best in the
world, from all they have had to love. Far, far off from these scenes
do they sail, and with swoln hearts, and tears too big to fall, they
feel that they must work or die. Some would think it a joy to die, for
death would put an end to what they feel. They think, too, that when
they die they will go back to the home round which their thoughts

Saib was one of these poor boys--he was born in that far-off place. As
long as he was there, each day was to him a day of joy. Saib had a dear
friend, who was near him at all times, and who took part in all his
sports, and had a tear for all his pains.

Boa was the name of this friend, and she would sit in the same deep
shade with him, and they would climb the same tall tree, and eat the
same fruits. They would row in the same boat, and go fast down the dark
deep stream. There were, too, those who were glad to see their joy, and
who would watch them as they went on and on, till they were far out of
sight. They knew no fear--they had no cause for fear, but in the shape
of a white man.

It was in one of these sails down the stream that they drew their boat
to the shore at a place that was quite strange to them. They got out of
it, and went on till they had gone far in a strange wild spot. On and
on they went, till the step of Boa was not so firm as it had been; it
was less firm each time she put her foot to the ground.

"I can walk no more," she said at last; and quite faint and worn out,
she lay down on the ground. Poor Saib! he all at once thought of their
lorn state, and of how far they were from their home and from help.
There was no sound to be heard, and not a breath of air: all was a
still dead calm.

The strength of Saib, too, was gone--he could hold out no more; and he,
too, sank on the ground. There they both lay, quite worn out with so
much toil; and they fell to sleep. How long they had lain thus they
could not know, for when the next day's sun was far on his course,
where were they then?

All was strange to them--like the queer things dreams are made of. So
they shut their eyes once more, and thought they dreamt about the white

But it was no dream: they _did_ see the white men! Yes, it was the
white men who had put those cords round their hands and feet. There
they lay, like logs of wood thrown on a plank, a man at each end of the
plank, and these men took poor Saib and Boa.

For a long time the minds of poor Saib and Boa were in such a state
that they could not _think_, nor could they call to mind how they came
to be where they were. Thus did they go for miles, till at last they
came near the sea coast, and Saib saw a ship out at sea, with her sails
spread. Close to the shore was a small boat, near which there were two
or three black men, who, as Saib and the rest came in sight, rose up in
haste, and the sound of a gun was heard. Saib did not know if this
sound came from the ship or the boat, but as soon as it was heard there
was a great rush of men to the sea shore.

[Illustration: THE FIGHT. Page 37.]

Where these men came from it would have been hard to guess, for they
rose up all at once, as if they had sprung out of the earth. Long had
they lain in wait to try if they could keep that ship from the shore,
for that ship was a slave ship, and the white men meant to take on
board all the blacks they could seize. That it was a slave ship had
been found out by scouts set to watch this part of the coast.

Great was the joy of Saib when he saw the chance of help--when he
thought that he should once more be free! The fight was a fight of
blood, and some on each side were left dead on the shore.

The ship came near to the shore, and soon a boat was put out in which
there were more white men. Few of the poor blacks were left, and those
that were took to flight when they saw that all hope was gone.

Saib was one of those who could _not_ take to flight. His cords had
been cut off at the first of the fight, but such was his state of mind,
so much did he feel from hope and fear, that he could not move, nor
make use of his limbs.

And, oh! what a sight for him to see! There was Boa, his friend--the
poor girl for whom he had more love than he had for all else on the
earth--there she was on the ground at his feet. She would not look at
him more; he would hear her voice no more: Boa lay there, dead!

From this time he had no sense of what was said or done; he had no
care, no thought, for what might be done to _him_. So there he stood
mute and still, like a thing cut in stone.

Some time he had stood thus when there was seen far off a dense cloud
like dust.

"They come! they come!" said the white men. "More blacks are on us! To
the ship! to the ship!"

Saib knew not what was said or done, and if he had heard, there would
have been no help for him. He was thrown in the boat with two or three
more blacks, and then from the boat he was flung on board the ship, and
the ship set sail.

Fast did she cut through the sea, and soon was far out of sight of
land. It was well for Saib that he could _not_ feel. Four or five days
ran their course, and still was Saib in this state.

The first words he heard when he came to his senses were--"He is _not_
dead, I tell you."

"I tell you he _is_," a voice said: "it is of no use to keep him, so
here he goes--(Saib felt a hand)--and let the sea take the rest of

Poor Saib had but so much strength left that he could just raise his

"There, there!" said the first voice, "I told you he was not dead, and
now you see."

"Well, let him be, then, but he shall pay us well for this; he shall
bring us a good price."

Saib could hear no more; but the first man, who was a kind one, went to
get some warm drink to put in Saib's mouth. He put more and still more,
till at length Saib could move and raise his head.

"Boa! Boa!" were the first words he spoke; and he put his hands to his
eyes, and did not speak for a long time. He then gave one loud, deep
sob, and his tears fell fast.

Those tears took a weight from his mind, a weight he felt he could not
have borne long. For some time did these tears fall, and as they fell
the view of things that _had_ been was more clear to his mind.

Saib felt that all joy for him in this world was gone: he felt there
was no one for him to love now; and great was his grief when he thought
of those who would not know what had been the fate of poor Boa and of
him. He thought of these things, and his heart was sad. In this state
of mind he was for two or three days, and the ship was still on the
wide sea.

Saib knew well what would be his fate: he knew that he would be sold
for a slave; and he did all he could to try to bear this thought; nay,
lorn and sad as he was, he could find a source of thanks in the fact
that the pang he would have felt to have seen Boa a slave was not to be

Yes, this was a source of deep thanks; and as the ship cut through the
blue waves, Saib would sit for hours with his eyes on some far-off
star, and that star would shed a ray of light on his soul.

He would think it shone so bright, to tell him that it was Boa's world
now. He felt sure that all things there must be pure and bright, and
that Boa might there have more joy than she had had on earth.

"And I shall go there too," he thought, "and so I will not care much
for what I have to bear in this world." Poor Saib!

The ship had not been long at shore, when Saib, and the rest of the
blacks, were all put in a large slave cart that took them to the place
where they were to be sold.

There stood Saib, his eyes bent down: now and then he would raise them
up as a white man came near; but these did not want to buy him. At last
there came one, a man with a hard cross face: he stood close to him,
and Saib felt his stern eyes fix on him. This man spoke to the one who
had to sell the slaves, and poor Saib _was sold_! He was soon put on
board a ship that was to set sail to that part of the world where white
men may keep slaves; here, in our land, such things are not done.

Saib felt it a hard task to do such things as he was told to do, for he
had to work all day long, and had no will of his own. If he were not so
quick as Mr. Stone thought he ought to be, he would whip him; and so
much would he whip him, that Saib, though he did all he could to try to
help it, could _not_ help the scream or groan that would break forth.

There were those on board this ship who had kind hearts, and who could
not bear to see a boy feel such pain as Saib was made to feel. There
was a Mr. and Mrs. Bright who had felt much grief to see how hard was
the lot of Saib.

Saib soon found out that they felt for him; and he would look at Mrs.
Bright and think how kind she must be; and he would wish Mr. Bright had
bought him, for he thought it would not be so hard a thing to be a
slave, if he had to serve those who were kind.

Once, when Mrs. Bright was on deck, and Mr. Stone was not there, Saib
came near to her; he could not speak such words as Mrs. Bright spoke,
but he could make signs, and the signs that he made were such as told
her more than words could have told. All she said was, "Poor boy!" but
Saib saw a tear in her eye, and that tear shot a gleam of joy on his
soul, for he knew it was for _him_.

One day Saib was no where to be found. In vain did Mr. Stone call to
him--the name of Saib! Saib! Saib! was heard in all parts of the ship,
but no Saib came.

In each place that could be thought of was Saib sought for, but in no
place could he be found. At length all thought that he had sought a
grave in the deep sea, and that no one would see him more. His fate had
been a sad one, and all felt that it had been so.

All on board thought a great deal of Saib. All that day did they think
of him, and the next day, and the next, and the next. But there was no
one who thought of poor Saib so much as Mrs. Bright did; she thought of
him so much that she saw him in her dreams, and she would start up in
her bed and call Saib! Saib! and this would seem so real that she could
not think it had been a dream.

One night when she had had this same dream, and had seen Saib, as she
thought, at the foot of her bed, she rose up with a start, but still he
was there! This was most strange. "Saib! Saib!" she said, "you _are_
there, and it is no dream."

But Saib was gone! and there was no trace of him to be seen. Yet so
sure did Mrs. Bright feel that she _had_ seen him, and that he was _not
dead_, that she could have no peace of mind. She thought of him the
whole of that day, and at night she made up her mind that she would not
go to sleep, but would lie quite still, as though she were gone to

When she had been in bed two or three hours, she heard a slight noise
in her room, yet she did not move. All was soon still, and then once
more she heard a noise. The sound was like that of a piece of wood _on
the slide_, but so soft it was that it could not have been heard by
ears less quick than the ears of Mrs. Bright were just at that time.
Once more she was still, and then she heard the soft step of a foot.
The watch-light was dim, and yet such ray as there was, fell on the
form of Saib! Yes! it was he, there he stood; Mrs. Bright saw, and she
could not doubt that it _was_ he!

She lay quite still, nor could she have made the least sign of life had
she had the wish to do so. Her eyes were not shut, so she could see all
that was done. Saib at first stood quite still, as if to be sure that
he was safe; and then he went with step soft and slow to a tub of dry
ship cakes, that Mrs. Bright kept in her room. She saw him take four or
five of these in his hand, and then he stole back to the place from
whence he had come.

All this she saw, but she could not have made known to Saib that she
saw it. Yet when he was gone out of her sight she gave one loud scream.
Mr. Bright, who slept in the berth next to hers, was up and on the
floor just in time to see Saib.

When Saib saw that he was seen, and that he was known, he fell on his
knees, and, oh, how much was told in that one look of his!

"My poor boy!" said Mr. Bright, "what you must have gone through, to
have made you make choice of such a life as this." As he spoke he saw
the hole in the side of the room through which Saib had come.

He found that it was a place made to keep things in that were out of
use, and it was so small that there was not room for Saib to lie down
in. Mrs. Bright did not know that there was such a place, and when it
was shut, the door was so like the rest of the side of the room, that
no one could have told there was a door there.

Saib had known of it, for he had seen a man put cords and ropes there,
at a time when the berths in that room were not in use. The place was
not quite dark--there were small holes on the deck of that part of the
ship, which let in light and air.

When Saib found that the looks of Mr. and Mrs. Bright were kind, hope
took the place of fear, and, by signs and such words as he could speak,
he made known his wish that they would let him stay where he had been,
till the ship came to shore.

Mr. and Mrs. Bright felt so much grief for the state the poor boy was
in, that they each had a strong wish to save him from all chance of
more pain, and they knew that the best way to do this would be to buy
him from Mr. Stone.

They made this wish known to Saib, and who could have seen the gleam of
joy shed on the face of Saib, when he knew what Mr. and Mrs. Bright
meant to do--who could have seen it, and not have felt joy too?

Mr. Stone, as has been said, was a hard man, and Mr. Bright had to fear
that he might be in such a rage at what Saib had done, that he would
not sell him.

Yet, though Mr. Stone _was_ a hard man, he was a man who had so great a
wish to be a rich man, that he could not say _no_, when there was gain
in his way; and though he was at first in a great rage, the sum Mr.
Bright said he would give for Saib was so large a one, that Mr. Stone
did not say no.

What was the joy of poor Saib when told he should be free!--what was
the joy of poor Saib when he found how much thought and care Mr. and
Mrs. Bright had for him!

They took Saib with them to their own home, and had him taught all
things that could be of use to him in the new state in which he now

Saib is now more than twelve years old; he has learnt to read, to
write, to speak the truth, to try to be calm when rude boys tease him,
and to feel grief when he has done wrong. To love his kind friends he
has not to learn--his heart bids him do that.

He feels all that Mrs. Bright has done for him--he hopes he may not
grieve her or Mr. Bright, but that he may be to them as a good
son.--Then they will not part with him; then they will be paid back for
all that they have done.

The thought of such a great and good deed must make them glad in this
world, and bring them joy in the next.


The world we live on is a large round ball, made of all kinds of rocks
and of earths; and on a great part of it there are seas and lakes. The
earth turns round each day, and goes round the sun once each year. In
the day, that part of the world where we live points to the sun, and
when the earth turns from the sun, it is night.

When the earth goes round the sun, the heat at one part of the year
comes from the sun more straight to that part where we live, and makes
the days hot and long, and the nights short, as in June; and when the
light and heat do not come to us so straight, there are cold and frost
and long nights.

In some parts of the world it is much more cold than where we live.
There are parts, too, where the sun is more hot at all times of the
year than we feel it. It is the heat of the sun that makes the winds.
His heat on the sea makes the clouds.

The clouds rise in the air and fly to the land, where they fall in
rain, and make plants and trees grow, and the brooks and springs flow.

The sea is salt, but the heat does not take up the salt in the fogs and
clouds; so that the rain is quite pure, and makes springs for us to
drink from.


George Crisp was a good boy; he was kind to those he knew, and could
not bear to have a thing that they had not.

He was glad when he could give things, and he gave a great deal to the
poor that came to the house, so that his stock of cash was at a low

Though George might have set his mind on some toy, he felt glad to
think that the pence which would have bought it had been of more use to
some one else.

But though he was so good in this way, yet he had one fault which
spoilt the whole. This fault was, that _he would not do as he was
bid_; for he thought he knew as well as those who told him, and his
Aunt, who taught him, did all she could to break him of the fault, but
in vain.

George's house was on the sea coast, and George went to dig in the
sands, to get shells, and to fish, and to sail boats in the pools which
were left at low tide; and when it was high tide he went with his Aunt
on the cliffs.

Now his Aunt had told him he must not go near the edge of the cliffs,
for they were steep and high. His Aunt took hold of his hand when she
went with him to the cliffs; for once he went so near the edge that he
must have gone down, and would have been much hurt, had not his Aunt
just caught him in time to save him.

One day, when they were on the cliffs, George's Aunt had left hold of
his hand to get a wild rose from a bush. She had got it, and had gone
back to take hold of George's hand, but no George was to be seen!

She then ran home, as she thought he might have gone back, but when she
came near the town she saw two men with a dead boy in their arms. She
ran in haste to look at him, and what was her grief to find that he was

The men took him home, and his Aunt, though in such a state that she
knew not what she did, went home too.

When Mrs. Crisp saw him she sent at once for Mr. Pill.

Mr. Pill said that he was not quite dead, that he might, with great
care, be brought to life, but that he would be ill for a long time.
George was brought to the fire and wrapt up in warm things; air was
blown down his mouth, and he was put in a warm bed. At last he came to
life, but he was so ill that he knew no one, and could not speak.

The men told George's Aunt that they were in their boat, and had just
gone out to fish, when they saw George fall down from the cliff. They
got their boat to the place as soon as they could, and brought him
home. George's Aunt now knew that he had gone to the edge of the cliff,
when she had told him not to do so.

While George lay in bed, he thought what a bad boy he had been, and of
what his Aunt had told him. And he thought, too, that if he should get
well he would try to do what his Aunt told him to do.

George was a month ill. As soon as he was well he told his Aunt he
would be a good boy, and try to do as she bid him--for he now knew that
what she told him to do was right.

Since that time George has done what he has been told to do, in all
things; for he has thought of the fall he had down the cliff.

He was such a good boy, that all were fond of him, and what is more, he
has grown up a good man.

Then let this tale warn those boys and girls who read it. May they do
as they are bid, and may they not, as George once did, think that they
know more than those who are more old than they are.


What is the bright moon, that shines so in the sky?

It is a world like ours, but not so large; and boys and girls may live
there, and go to school and play, as they do on this earth. To boys or
girls who live in the moon this earth of ours shines like a large moon,
and must give a great deal more light to them than their moon does to
us. They could see to read and write by the light of the earth quite

The moon gives light from the sun, and does not shine with its own
light; and so the earth would give back the sun's light to the men in
the moon.

There are land and sea, and hills and dales, in the moon; and the marks
we see on it, like a face, are the lights and shades of the land, the
hills, and the sea. There are hills too which are on fire, and they can
be seen through a large spy-glass. Some men have thought they could
make a spy-glass so large as would let them see the boys and girls in
the moon, but they have not yet done it.

What a strange sight would it be if we could see them all at work!


Once on a time there was a man who had his home in the moon. He was a
queer man, with a large round face that was kept so clear and bright
that it shone, and on a clear night could be seen far, far off--on the

This man in the moon did like to look on the earth, and though it was
so far off, he oft thought he should like to come and live here.

The earth to him did look so large and bright that he thought it must
be a fine world to live in, where he could have more room to walk up
and down, and not be kept in so small a place as the moon.

It made him sad when he could not look on this world, but for three
weeks in each month he was made to turn his face, or to shade it from
the world, so that he could not catch a straight view of it at those

And then he could not be seen by those men and boys on the earth, to
whom he was so great a friend. His large round face was so bright that
they, too, did not like him to leave them; but they knew he would come
back in less than a month.

When he first came he was seen near to the sun, where it had just set,
and he gave a side look at the earth. The next night he would be more
from the sun, and swell out his face a bit; it would then look like a
hoop that had been cut in two. His face would grow more fat each night,
till one eye could be seen, then two, and then his whole round face.

Now this man would fret, and try to get on to the earth. Day by day,
hour by hour, he would try, and try, and try to come more near.

He did move quite fast, and thought he got some miles on his way, but
for all that he was still as far off. He went in a round, like a horse
in a ring, and there kept, and still keeps as far off as he was, and
will keep there for years to come.

Now you could tell him that it is far from wise for a man with a fat
round face like his, to grieve and want to come to a world that he does
not know to be a more nice place than the one he lives in.

You could tell him that there is much grief and pain to be borne
here--that few men who live here have such a round fat face as his, and
that if he came he would have to work hard, and that care, and work,
and pain might soon make him look thin, and lose his round bright face
that shines so.

Yes, man in the moon, stay where you are. Do not long to have what you
can not get, but rest there, and do what you have to do in peace and

Be sure, man in the moon, you will find peace and joy if you do all the
good you can in that world of yours, and that if you pine and grieve to
come here, you will do no good at all, and make your life sad.

Boys and girls should do the same. They should not want to reach the
man in the moon, but try to make the best of what they have. They may
be sure that to be good and do as they are bid, will give them more joy
than the most bright things they could find in the moon.


There is in this world one grief of a kind so sad that there are some
who have not heard of it--there are still more who have not felt it.

This is the grief of a young child when he feels that he who ought to
be his best friend--he who ought to love him more than all else love
him--he who ought to soothe all his pains, and be glad at all his
joys,--that _he_ has no thought, no care, no love for him; and what is
far worse than this, who chills the pure first thoughts of a young
child's mind, and turns such thoughts to pain.

Let all those who have not heard of grief so great as this, joy and be
glad; but let them, while they dwell with thanks on their own lot,
think and feel for the lot of poor Frank Hart.

Mr. Hart was a man who did not know the _rule of self_. He had not been
taught this rule when he was young, and when he grew up to be a man,
_self_ had full rule over _him_.

His young ones, for he had more than Frank, felt this fault hard to
bear. So great was their fear of Mr. Hart, that when he was in the room
they did not dare to speak, or to laugh, or to move. Had they a book in
hand, they did not dare to turn the leaves, for fear that they might be
heard; nor could they leave the room, for their shoes might creak, or
the door might make a noise.

Thus would these poor things sit, till (sound of joy!) the well known,
and at times the long sought for sound, the push of Mr. Hart's chair,
told them he would soon be gone. Then the door would shut; and no shut
of door could bring more ease and joy than the shut of that.

He was gone! and these young ones, freed from such chains as few so
young have felt, would rise up from their chairs and jump, in proof
that they _were_ free; and though they might not speak a word, each
knew what was felt by all.

Frank was not so old by two years as the one next to him in age: he was
but eight years old, and he did not dare to tell how great was his fear
of Mr. Hart.

Frank thought that to feel as he felt must be wrong, and yet he could
not help it. He thought this when he saw all boys else so glad to see
the friend who was to them all that Mr. Hart ought to have been to

Frank, when he saw the rush of joy, when he heard the loud laugh of
glee with which these boys were wont to greet this friend of theirs,
has felt sad.

The bell that calls a child, though from its room of play to the room
down stairs, that bell which is a sound so full of joy, brought no joy
to poor Frank. It was a sound that he could not bear to hear, for to
him it rang a knell of pain. And who can blame Frank for this? who
_can_ when they know the scene to which such a bell would call him?

"Come in, Frank," said Mr. Hart one day to him, "come in: here is an
egg for you."

Frank could not think that such a thing could be for him, yet he _saw_
the egg, and his face told how glad he was.

"Thank you," said Frank, as in great haste he took hold of the spoon.

He broke the shell with much care, and took it off bit by bit. He had
just put his spoon so as to take up some of the nice white, when he
found that quite as hard as he had found the shell. This was odd! but
still he broke through _that_, when his spoon fell through it--it was
but an egg-shell full of air!

What was poor Frank's look of woe! He gave one quick glance at Mr.
Hart: such a glance it was! It said as plain as glance could say, "How
can you do this to me?"

Yet the glance did not stop the loud laugh which burst forth; nor did
that laugh cease till Frank had left the room, and _then_ it rung in
his ears for a long time.

Such a child as Frank was feels a thing like this much more than he
feels pain that he is made to feel when he has done wrong. Such a child
as Frank was _knows_ when he has done wrong, and when he is made to
feel pain for it, he thinks it is pain he ought to feel, to make him a
good boy.

A child like Frank soon finds out if he is made to feel pain for his
own good, or if he is made to feel it from some cross thought that may
pass through the mind of some one who may not care for his good at all.

Thus Frank, who was a boy who thought a great deal, as young as he was,
knew well when it was right he should be made to feel pain, and when it
was done for no fault of his own.

Poor Frank! he has thought this last was the case when he has been told
by Mr. Hart to snuff the light on his desk, and he has put it out.

Poor Frank! he has now and then made all dark; for when he has put out
this desk light, there has been no light but the fire light to guide
Mr. Hart's hand to Frank's ear. And, oh! that poor ear, how it did
smart, and how loud the noise of the box did sound!

At these times Frank said not a word, nor did he shrink from the blow;
but Frank _thought_, and his mind grew more and more full of thought.

But what most hurt Frank was, that things were done and said to him
just to make him say what was queer, and then this queer thing would be
told by Mr. Hart to his friends, and they would laugh at Frank.

Now Frank did not like this at all; and one night, when he had still on
his mind some thing that he had said, which Mr. Hart had told, Mr. Hart
all at once said to him, "Frank, wish a wish."

"I can't wish," said Frank.

"But you must wish, and you shall," said Mr. Hart.

Still Frank spoke not.

"What would you most wish to have?" said Mr. Hart.

"I don't know," said Frank.

"But you shall know--I'll make you know--you shall not go to bed till
you _do_ know, so speak at once."

Still Frank said not a word.

"Speak, Frank," once more said Mr. Hart: "speak, Frank, and say what
you would the most wish to have, if you could have what you wish."

"I don't know," once more said Frank.

"You don't know! but I say you _shall_ know--you must know--I'll _make_
you know, I tell you. Go! you shall be shut up in that dark room! Go!
there you shall stay, if it be all night; go!"

Frank said not a word, but did not move.

"Do you hear me?" said Mr. Hart.

Still Frank did not move.

Mr. Hart at length took him by the hand, and led him to the dark room.

This room was next to the one where they were. Mr. Hart took Frank by
force, put him in, and shut the door.

And now there was poor Frank all in the dark.

The first sounds that came forth were "Oh! oh! oh!" and then a burst of
tears. Soon all was still, and then there were more sobs and tears.

"Wish a wish, I tell you," once more said Mr. Hart. "Wish a wish, or
you shall stay where you are all night."

"Stay! stay! stay!" said Frank. "Don't go, don't go!"

And now such a noise did he make at the door with his feet and hands
that his voice could not well be heard; but through it all the scream
of "Don't go, don't go!" went on.

"Good night," said Mr. Hart, when the noise was for a short time still,
"good night, we all go, and we leave you there."

"Stay! oh, stay!" said Frank, in tones of woe.

"Wish a wish," said Mr. Hart, "or we are all gone."

"Oh!" said Frank, "I do wish I were in bed."

There was a loud laugh.

"You have now _told_ your wish," said Mr. Hart, "and you may go to

Frank did not stay to be told _twice_.


Mr. and Mrs. Lloyd had two boys and one girl; their names were Paul,
Charles, and Grace. They were good on the whole, but they had one

Mrs. Lloyd had told them that she should not like them to go to a fair
which was to be held on the tenth of June. It was now near that time,
and they had a strong wish to go.

The tenth of June came, and the fair this year was most grand.

When they came to the front door, they saw such crowds of men, girls,
and boys, that their wish to go was more strong than it had been.

Soon Mr. and Mrs. Lloyd went out, and left Paul, Charles, and Grace in
the room. When they had been gone some time, Paul said to Grace, "Shall
we take a walk?"

Grace said, "Yes, I should like to go; what do you think if we were to
take a peep at the fair?"

"Oh," said Charles, "I should like that the best of all things. I will
go and put on my hat."

So they went to put on their things, and out they set. Soon they came
near the fair. Guess how great their joy! But how much more great would
it have been if they had not felt that they had done wrong!

They saw grand shows, and stalls full of nice things. They had each of
them brought half a crown; but the half-crowns were soon spent, and
they would have been glad of more.

The day was far gone when they thought of home, and they were in a
great fright to find that they were so far from home, and in a new road
which they had not been in till then.

[Illustration: THE LOST ONES. Page 108.]

They were sad, and they knew, too, that they had brought this on them
selves; for if they had not gone to the fair, when Mrs. Lloyd had told
them not to go, this would not have been.

These thoughts were in their minds, when a Strange One, whose trade it
was to tell fates, came near them, and said that if they had lost their
way, she would take them home.

They told her they had been at the fair, and that they could not find
their way home.

"Oh," said she, "I knew that,--you could not cheat me." She then took
Grace by the hand, Paul and Charles went on first. She led them on a
great way: they did not dare to speak a word, for they were in a great
fright. At last she came to a place where there was a large fire, with
a pot on the top of it.

"Look here," said she to a man who was there, "I have brought these
young folks, who do not know their way home."

"Oh!" said the man, "let 'em sleep here."

They slept that night on a mat.

The next day the Strange One put them on some rags, and took off their
own nice clothes.

When they saw what clothes they had got on, they did not like them, but
they did not dare to speak.

Soon this Strange One told them to go with her, and she led them on a
great way. How they did scream and cry out! "This is not the way home;
I want to go home: I will go home." This Strange One could bear it no
more, and she told them that she would tie up their mouths, but they
did not seem to mind.

At last she did tie their mouths; and she led them on, and on, and did
not stop till she came to a wild heath.

There were a few tall trees, and here and there, there were wild roots
and grass. She took some string, and bound them to trees, and left

No more has been known of the Strange One, nor of the man, from that
day to this.

Now when Mr. and Mrs. Lloyd came home and found no Paul, nor Charles,
nor Grace, they were in great grief. They then thought what would be
the best to be done. At last Mrs. Lloyd went to ask her friend, Mrs.
Wood, who told her that she had seen them at the fair.

Mrs. Lloyd, when she heard this, had more hope, and she thought that
they might soon come home. But no! the clock struck one, two, and
three, and still they did not come!

When this Strange One went, Paul, and Charles, and Grace were left on
the wild heath. Think what a fright they must have been in--no one near
them: and no one knew where they were but this Strange One who had left
them there.

At last Paul broke his string, and then he cut the strings of Charles
and Grace. He took hold of their hands and led them up and down.

This heath was large and wild. Just as it was dark, great was their joy
when they saw a house. It was a farm house; they went in the barn and
slept all night on some straw. When day light came they got up, and
went on till they came to a town.

They had not gone down the first street, when they saw their own
milk-man. They ran to him at once: "Take us home," said they, "do take
us home."

The milk-man did take them home.

When Mrs. Lloyd saw them--when she knew that they were safe, she could
not speak a word, but her look told a great deal--they _felt_ that
look, and they all said, "We have done wrong, but we will try not to do
wrong more."


The sun is a large world of much more size and weight than the earth
and all the stars that move round it. It is by its great weight that it
draws them all to it, and if they did not move fast and far in a course
that takes them from the sun, all those stars that move round it with
our world would be drawn to it in a short time. No one knows of what
the sun is made, nor how it is that it gives so much heat and light;
but most wise men think that it is a world like our own, where men can
live, and not be burnt more than we are burnt by the heat of the earth.
What makes the light and heat is a thing that seems strange to all.
Some think that the clouds round it give out the light; that the black
spots which are seen on the sun are large holes in the clouds round it,
through which the sun is seen, and that the black spots are parts of
the real sun. The sun shines and gives out heat to all the stars, which
could not move in their orbs if the sun did not draw them to it; for
they would else fly off through space.


Jane Thorpe was eight years old; so good had she been that Mrs. Thorpe
told her she would take her to a toy shop, where she might choose the
toy she would like best.

The toy shop was three or four miles from Mrs. Thorpe's house, so she
rang the bell, and sent to tell the groom to bring round the coach.

[Illustration: THE COACH. Page 120.]

The coach came round to the door, and great was the joy of Jane.

Yet, though Jane was so glad, she would have been more glad if Charles
might have gone too. But Charles could not go; he had not been a good
boy, and Mrs. Thorpe said he must stay at home.

Jane gave one look at him as she left the room to put on her things,
and as she got in the coach, a tear fell down her cheek.

But on went the coach, and soon Jane thought but of the toy shop, and
of what toy she would like best to have. Round and round went the
wheels, and soon they were put down at the door of the toy shop.

How hard it was to choose! Yet no choice could fail to please. But
choose what she would, some things must be left that she would like to

There was a large coach, and each horse would put on and take off.
There was a man to drive, who sat on the box, and who had a long whip
in his hand; and, more than all, the doors of the coach would turn
back, and they would shut! There was a hay cart, and in it were three
men with smock frocks; and there were some dolls in gay clothes--a
great deal too smart to make hay, but they were so nice and so neat!
and then all their things would take off and on, and they had large
round hats on their heads.

Near this cart Jane stood a long time. At length she said, "I will
choose this." But just when she said it she saw a doll--a large doll,
with blue eyes and light hair. Jane thought the doll's eyes were sweet
and soft, and she said, "No, no; I will not have the cart, I will have
that sweet doll: do, do let me have that."

The doll, which was made of wood, was a nice strong doll, and Jane saw
it put up for her to take home. She took hold of it with great care, in
fear to spoil the clean white frock it had got on.

When Jane was at home, she ran up stairs to show it to Charles and to
her Aunt: and her Aunt gave her some silk to make a cloak for it. Jane
did her best to try to make it well, nor did it take her a long time to
do this, as her Aunt cut out the parts and put them for her in the
right way.

Jane then ran for her hat, and, in great joy, took her doll, and went
in the lime walk.

There was a seat in this walk; and here Jane would oft spend two or
three hours in the cool shade of the trees.

On this seat she sat down now, and, when she had been some time, she
thought she would fix her doll on a branch of a tree. She did so; and
she thought she must run and ask her Aunt just to come and look at it.
The doll was left, and off she went, full of glee and song.

Where her Aunt was gone Jane did not know; she was not in the rooms
down stairs, nor was she in her own room up stairs; so Jane went in all
parts of the house. "Aunt! Aunt!" she said, but no Aunt could she find.
This took up a great deal of time, and at length she went back to the
lime walk.

Poor Jane! what a sight for you to see was there!--"My doll! my doll! O
my doll!" were the first words she said, and then she sank down on the
seat near the tree. And where was this doll of poor Jane's? There it
was--not the doll such as she had left it, but the doll with its head
cut off!

The head was hung by a string to a branch of the tree, and the rest of
the doll was on the ground.

"O my doll, my dear, dear doll! who can have done so bad a thing as
this? my doll! my doll!"

Just at this time her Aunt came near the lime walk. She heard the sobs
of Jane, and ran fast to see what was the cause. All she said when she
saw the doll was, "My dear Jane," and she gave her such a kiss as an
Aunt who loves her Niece _can_ give. And then they went back to the

And who had done this bad thing? That must now be told.

There was a boy whose name was John Snap; he did not live far from
Broom Hill, the house of Mr. Thorpe.

John Snap was not a good boy: he was so far from it that there was no
one who had a child that did not try to keep him out of the way of John
Snap. Mr. Thorpe had told Charles that he would not let him play with a
boy he thought so ill of.

John Snap would take birds' nests, a thing which no boy with a kind
heart could do; and he would tease dogs and cats, and do things that he
knew would hurt them. Now it is quite sure that no good boy could do
this; for he must know that all things that have life can feel pain as
much as he feels it.

All things that have life can feel pain in all parts of their frame;
but there is one kind of pain which dogs, and cats, and such things as
they, do not feel as man feels it--and that is _pain of mind_. Such
pain as this is hurts much more than some pains that are felt to be
hard to bear in the _frame_ of man.

It was just such pain as this that Jane felt when she saw the head of
her doll cut off. It was such pain as this that John Snap likes to

Though John Snap was so bad, yet he could do and say things which made
boys like to be with him. There was now and then a great deal of fun in
what he said, and he could make boys laugh. All boys like to laugh, and
few could fail to laugh at what John Snap said.

Thus, in time, they might have been led to like him, and then they
would not have thought some of the things he did so bad as they were.
It was the fear of this which made Mr. Thorpe tell Charles he did not
wish him to play with John Snap.

Mr. Thorpe told Charles that when John Snap spoke to him he must say
what he had to say to him in a kind way, but that he must leave him as
soon as he could.

Now it was not right of Charles Thorpe to go to John Snap's house, nor
ought he to have gone out with him to play at trap and ball, for he
knew that it was wrong to do so. This was the cause why he could not go
with Jane to the toy shop. He was kept at home for a week, and told not
to go past the sunk fence.

John Snap had not seen him for six days, so he thought he would go and
call at Broom Hill. When he got there, he did not go to the house, but
took a walk down the lime walk. This was just at the time when Jane was
gone; and when he came to the seat near the tree he saw the doll. What
he _did_ may now be told.

Yes! it was John Snap who had done this deed. At noon, as soon as it
was done, he went close to a tree, so that he could not be seen. He did
this that he might see what Jane would do when she came back, and hear
what she would say.

He heard and saw all; but when he found how great was Jane's grief, he
kept quite close to the tree, and did not dare to move till she was
gone. He then went home as fast as he could, and great was his hope
that no one would know that it was he who had cut off the poor doll's

Mr. and Mrs. Thorpe, and Jane's Aunt too, thought that this was like
some of John Snap's tricks, but they did not wish to say so to Jane or
to Charles. Jane's Aunt had a plan which she thought would be the means
to find out if he had done this or not.

One day Charles was sent to ask John Snap to dine at Broom Hill.

John was glad to go; but he felt he should not like to see Jane, for
she might talk of her doll; and if she should talk of it, he thought
that he might say or do that which might tell what he had done. Yet
John Snap went to dine at Broom Hill.

Now there was one thing of which John Snap was most fond, and this
thing was fruit tart. The fruit tarts at Broom Hill were so sweet, and
the crust was so light!

The day on which John Snap went to dine at Broom Hill the fruit tart
was put near where he sat. How nice and large it was! and how good it
smelt too! He thought the time was long till the time came for the tart
to be cut.

"It will soon be cut now," thought he. But this dish came, and that
dish went, yet still the fruit tart was not cut. He said, "No thank
you," to all, for he thought but of the tart.

At length all the things were gone _but_ the tart. "That won't go, I
hope," thought John; and great was his joy when he heard Mr. Thorpe say
in a loud clear tone, "John Snap, will _you_ please to cut that tart?"

John, in great haste to do what he was told, took up the spoon--but the
crust would not break: there was some hard thing, and the spoon would
not go through the crust. One, twice, three times did he try. "Put a
knife round the edge of the dish and clear off the crust," said Mr.
Thorpe; "we _must_ come to the fruit."

John Snap did so. He put a knife round the edge of the dish, and all
the crust came off at once. And what was there in that dish?

_A dolls head!_

Jane gave a loud scream, and John Snap made a rush to the door.

He was out of the room, but he heard Jane say, "It was _he_ who did it!
it was _he_ who did it! My poor doll!"

The tone of Jane's voice, as she said this, made John go back. He could
not bear to hear her. "Jane! Jane!" he said, "that doll's head will be
the means to make me a good boy. I feel I could be good. I feel some
thing that tells me so. I grieve for what I have done--I feel grief of
such a kind as I have not felt till now."

Jane saw his face. When she saw his face, it told her so much that she
said, "_I will think of this no more_."


Mr. and Mrs. Green had two girls, and their names were Kate and Anne.
Kate was ten and Anne was eight years old.

[Illustration: THE DANGER OF FIRE. Page 143.]

It made Mrs. Green quite sad to think that she could not cure them of
one bad fault; this fault was that they would play with fire.

All she said was of no use, for they would do it. Though she bought
them books, and dolls, and all things that were nice, to play with,
still fire was the thing they would play with. They would get a long
piece of straw and set it on fire, and say it was a torch; and they
went with these straws up and down stairs, and said they were in mines.

When Mrs. Green saw them do so she would scold them, and put them on
chairs, or send them to bed, and did all she could to break them of it,
but still they did not mind, and in a short time they would do the

Once one of the straws dropt and set their work on fire; and it might
have done much harm, had not the maid just then come in to put on some
coals. She threw the rug on the blaze, and put it out.

One day Mr. and Mrs. Green went out for a walk, and, as they could not
take Kate and Anne with them, they were left in the house. When Mrs.
Green left the house, she told them to mind not to touch the fire, and
that, if they were good and did not touch it, she would bring them a
nice toy.

Kate and Anne were glad at the time, but as soon as she was gone, they
went down to the dog's house, which was full of straw, and each got
some nice long straws. Then they went up stairs to pull down the
blinds, to make it, as they said, seem more like a real mine. They then
put long straws in the fire to light, and went with them up and down
the room.

Kate bent some straws, and made them go round and round, and said they
were squibs; Anne did the same; and they did this for more than half an

They found that to do this did not burn them, as Mrs. Green had told
them it would do, and they did not know why she did not like them to do
it. This made them more bold, and they did it still more.

And at last Anne's frock caught fire,--and how it did blaze up!

She ran up and down the room, and did not know what to do, she was in
so much fear. Kate went to her to try to put out the blaze; then she,
too, caught fire, and not one of them had the sense to roll on the rug.

Their cries brought up the maid, who wrapt them in the rug, which soon
put out the fire; but when she took them out, what was her grief to see
how they were burnt! Kate was not so much burnt as Anne, but still she
was so sore that she could not stand; and so loud were their screams,
that the maid thought that they would scream till they were dead. Great
was their pain, and the maid put them in bed.

As soon as they were in bed Mr. and Mrs. Green came home from their
walk. They were most sad when they saw the state in which Kate and Anne
were; and still more sad were they to think that they had been at the
fire, when Mrs. Green had told them not to go there.

She had brought Kate a book, and Anne a nice wax doll, as she thought
to have found them good when she came home.

Both Kate and Anne felt a great deal of pain, and they were ill for a
long time.

When they were well, poor Anne's face was not at all what it had
been--it was full of large scars and deep marks, that would not come
out; and when she went to look in the glass, she gave a loud scream.
How much did she wish she had not gone to the fire when she had been
told not to so!

Poor Kate! the black mark on her hand gave her a great deal of pain,
and when it was well she could not bear to look at it, for it brought
to her mind what she had done.

They could not bear to see a large blaze, or to go near the fire, nor
to warm their hands when they were cold.

Once when Mr. Green let off some squibs, they could not bear to see
them, for it brought to their minds the time when they had been so much


John Gay was eight years old. He was not a good boy, for he now and
then told what was not true, and that is not right, for all boys and
girls should speak the truth.

One day when his Aunt was in the room, John came in, and he saw her
with a plum cake in her hand. She told him when she left the room, that
he must not touch. He said, "No, Aunt; I will not touch it."

When his Aunt had been some time gone, John thought, "Well, if I were
to take a bit of cake, my Aunt would not miss it from such a large cake
as this is: yet it seems to me not to be quite right to take it."

But this boy (sad to say!) _did_ take a piece, and he found it so good
that he thought he would take a piece more. He _did_ take some more;
and he took piece by piece, and piece by piece, till he had made the
cake quite small.

When he had done this, he knew that he had done wrong, and he felt sad.
He went in his own room. He knew that the time must come when his Aunt
would find it out.

He was sure that his Aunt would scold him if she knew; but he thought
if he told her he had not done it she would think that he told the

With these thoughts in his mind, he heard a knock at the door. He knew
that it was his Aunt, so he made haste to come down stairs. He did not
go in the room where the plum cake was, but he went in the next room.
He took up a book, but he could not read, for his thoughts were too
full of what he had done.

Soon his Aunt came in with the plum cake in her hand. "John," said she,
"look at this cake: when I went out it was quite large, and now look at

John said, "I do not know of it: how should I?"

She then rang; the bell: "Ann," said she as the maid came in the room,
"do you know what has made the cake in this state? Call the cook, and
ask her."

The cook said the same as Ann had said, that "she did not know of it."

When they were gone, his Aunt said to John, "It can be no one but you
who have done this. I left you in the room with this cake, and told you
not to touch it, and now, when I am come back, I find it in this

John could not speak a word, for he felt that he had done wrong. His
Aunt saw this, and told him to go to bed.

When he was in bed he thought what a bad boy he had been, and how wrong
it was for him to have told his Aunt what was not true. He thought that
when he got up he would go and tell his Aunt how wrong he had been, and
that he would do so no more.

John did as he thought he would do. His Aunt told him that if he was a
good boy for a month, no more should be said of it.

He _was_ a good boy for a month; but for a long time past the month,
when John saw plum cake, a flush of shame came on his face.


Rose Wood was in want of six pence. She had seen a box that she had a
great wish to buy; and she thought that if she had but six pence, which
was the price of that box, she should not have a want for a long time.

Rose would stand close to the shop, near a pane of glass through which
she could see this box, and each time she saw it the more strong was
her wish to have it for her own.

So much did Rose think of it that it might be said she had not a wish
but what was shut up in that box.

"What shall I do for six pence?" said Rose one day; "that box will cost
but six pence, and if I had six pence it would be my own."

"Why," said Mark Wood, "if you will sell your self to me, I will give
you six pence."

"Sell my self! yes, that I will," said Rose. "Give me six pence, and I
will sell my self at once."

"But," said Mark, "do you know that when I have bought you, you will be
my child, and that you must do all that I bid you do?"

"Oh! I _will_ do all: I don't care what you bid me do, if I may but
have the six pence to buy that box."

The six pence were hers, and the box was bought; but, poor Rose! you
had to pay a great price for it.

With what joy she ran home box in hand!

"Look at it, look at it, Mark! This box is mine now; do just look at
it. Do just look at this glass at the top: I can see my face in it, and
I can see some of the things that are in the room. In the box I mean to
keep small sweet cakes; and, Mark, I am sure I shall give you some, for
you have been so kind to let me have the six pence. Oh, Mark, I do
thank you so much."

"Stop, Rose, stop!" said Mark, "and do not thank me for the six pence
till you know what I mean you to do for it. The first thing I shall
tell you to do is, 'Put down the box.'"

"Put down the box!" said Rose: "not yet:--why must I put down the box?"

"Why! I tell you to do so; you are my child now, and must do what I bid

Poor Rose!

"But I may play with the box? I must and will play with my nice new
box; that you will let me do."

"No, Rose," said Mark, "I can let you play with it no more. You must
come with me; I mean to send you out to find some cress, and then you
must go and try to sell it. Come, I shall put you on this hat of old
Bet's, and you must wear this old shawl, and you must tuck up your
frock, and go out to find the cress."

"Oh dear! oh dear!" said Rose; "you do not mean that I should do this?"

"But I do mean it, and you must go at once."

Mark put on the hat and the shawl for her. She was quite still, and
said not a word. Mark then took hold of her hand and led her to a field
near the house, and told her she must not come back till she had got as
much nice cress as would sell for two pence. He then shut the gate of
the field, and left poor Rose by her self.

At first she did not move, so strange did it seem to her that she
should be left thus.

Soon she sat down on a bank. When she had been there some time she got

"How queer this is!" said she; "but it is all fun:" yet the laugh with
which she said this was soon a _cry_.

Rose was a girl not soon cast down; all that she had to do or to bear,
she did her best to do and to bear it well. She took a walk up and down
the field, and at last she thought, "Well, I might as well try and see
if I can find some cress;" and then she ran up and down till she had
got a great way from the house.

No cress could she find, so she thought she would turn back and go
home. But just when she had thought this, she saw on a pond, at the
foot of the long slope on which she stood, some bright green weed, that
she thought was cress. Off she set down the slope as fast as she could
run, and she ran so fast that she could not stop till she came to the
end. When she did stop she could not move.

[Illustration: THE POND. Page 168.]

Rose was deep in the pond--it came up as far as her throat! There she
stuck quite fast, and there she might have stuck for hours, had not her
cries been heard by Mark, who, though not seen, had not lost sight of
her since the time she had left the house.

Mark, who was now in great fear, ran as fast as feet could run to the
place where the head of Rose was to be seen on the pond, like a float
on the top of green weeds. When Mark came to the slope, he went down it
with care, lest the fate of Rose should be his.

The screams of Rose were loud: "I shall sink! I shall sink deep, deep
down! Oh, help me! help me!" She then saw Mark: "Mark! Mark!" she said;
"fast! fast! pray, pray come fast." Mark was now at the edge of the
pond. "Raise up your arms," said he; "raise up your arms, and take fast
hold of my hand."

The mud and slime were so thick that poor Rose found it hard to raise
up her arms. Yet she did so, and caught hold of Mark's hand with such
force that he, too, would have been in the pond had he not made a quick
step back.

When Rose had got a firm grasp, Mark, with all the strength he had, did
what he could to drag her out. At length she _was_ out: she stood at
the edge of the pond, her clothes thick with mud and slime; and such a
weight she was, that she could not move fast.

Poor Mark stood by her side, his face quite pale with the fright he had
had. They went up the slope as well as they could. When they were near
home, just at the gate which led out of the last field, they were met
by Mr. Wood. What must Mr. Wood have thought to see Rose in that
strange state, and with such a queer hat on her head?

"Rose," he said, and the tone of his voice was a cross tone; "Rose, how
is this? where can you have been, and how is it that I see you thus?"

"O Sir," said Mark, "do not scold Rose, do not scold Rose; it is all my
fault, and all the blame must be mine." Mark then told Mr. Wood how
Rose had sold her self to him for six pence, and what he had made her
do when he had bought her.

"Go in the house, Rose," said Mr. Wood; "go to bed at once; what I have
to say to you must not be said now."

Rose did not dare to hold up her head as she went through the hall. She
felt much shame when the maid came to take off her clothes and to wash
her. Rose saw the maid laugh, and _that_ she did think was hard to
bear, but she did not say a word.

Now Mr. Wood was a man who had a great deal of good sense, and when his
boy or girl had done what was wrong, it was his wish that the cure
should be wrought by their own sense of right and wrong. He thought
that the shame they felt from the sense of wrong would be the best cure
they could have. He did all he could to make them _feel_ in what they
had done wrong, and when he was sure they felt this he was sure they
would do so no more.

Now Mark was wrong to have let Rose have the six pence; and what made
it the more wrong was that he knew Mrs. Wood had once told Rose she did
not wish her to buy the box she had so great a wish to buy, for she
thought the glass at the top would soon break, and that Rose might be
cut by it. Mr. Wood did not say much to Mark, for he saw that he felt a
great deal. But he told Mark it was his wish that the pond scene should
be felt by Rose, and that it should be made the means to cure her of
her worst fault.

This fault was, that when Rose had a strong wish to have a thing she
thought she should like to have, she would not hear _no_.

The more _no_ was said, the more did she wish to have the thing to
which it was said. This had just been the case with the box. Mrs. Wood
had said no two, three, and four times, and each time that the _no_ was
said, the wish for _yes_ had been more strong.

The next day, when Rose came down stairs, she did not raise up her
eyes. Mr. Wood told her that as she had sold her self to Mark, he
should leave her to his charge for three days, and in that time she
must do all that Mark told her, and that she would have to do much she
would not like.

"Oh, Sir," said Rose, "buy me back! do buy me back!"

"Not yet," said Mr. Wood, "but if you do all that Mark bids you do for
three days, and if you do your best to try to put a check on the fault
which has been the cause of all this, why, then I _will_ buy you back."

The first day Rose did try as much as she could; but it was all she
could do not to cry when Mark told her to do things: "_You_ tell me,
Mark!--why should I do what you tell me?" and then she would think of
the _cause_ of that why, and she would hang down her head and blush.

The last of the three days was come, and on this day Rose felt light of
heart. Once she went to the place where the box had been put; she took
it up and said, "This box is mine--I shall not lose this." She took off
the lid, and just then she heard some one at the door. In great haste
to put back the box, her foot slipt, and down she fell. In the fall the
glass lid broke, and a piece of the glass stuck in her lip. The blood
came in streams. Her cries were loud, and Mrs. Wood, who heard them,
ran in great fear to know the cause.

It was a sad deep gash, and poor Rose was faint with pain and fright.

So deep was the wound, that for ten days Rose could not put food in her
mouth; what food she took came through the spout of a tea-pot. Rose
could not speak nor laugh: she had a great deal of pain to bear, and
she did all she could to bear it well.

Mark would sit near her, and watch her, and read to her; and he would
look so sad at times! When he was sad, Rose would do what she could to
make her pain seem less than it was; but Rose's mouth could not prove
the kind smile that was in her heart.

It was a long time ere Rose was quite well. Years are now flown in the
stream of time since the day when Rose cut her lip.

The mark left by the cut is on her lip still. There it will be as long
as she lives; and when she has a wish for that which she knows she
ought not to have, that mark tells her to TAKE CARE.



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