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Title: Our Little Roumanian Cousin
Author: Winlow, Clara Vostrovsky
Language: English
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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.

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[Transcriber's Note: Bold text is surrounded by =equal signs= and
italic text is surrounded by _underscores_.]



Our Little Roumanian Cousin



THE

Little Cousin Series

(TRADE MARK)


Each volume illustrated with six or more full page plates in tint.
Cloth, 12mo, with decorative cover per volume, 60 cents


LIST OF TITLES

BY MARY HAZELTON WADE, MARY F. NIXON-ROULET, BLANCHE MCMANUS, CLARA V.
WINLOW, FLORENCE E. MENDEL AND OTHERS


    =Our little African Cousin=
    =Our Little Alaskan Cousin=
    =Our Little Arabian Cousin=
    =Our Little Argentine Cousin=
    =Our Little Armenian Cousin=
    =Our Little Australian Cousin=
    =Our Little Austrian Cousin=
    =Our Little Belgian Cousin=
    =Our Little Bohemian Cousin=
    =Our Little Boer Cousin=
    =Our Little Brazilian Cousin=
    =Our Little Bulgarian Cousin=
    =Our Little Canadian Cousin=
    =Our Little Chinese Cousin=
    =Our Little Cossack Cousin=
    =Our Little Cuban Cousin=
    =Our Little Danish Cousin=
    =Our Little Dutch Cousin=
    =Our Little Egyptian Cousin=
    =Our Little English Cousin=
    =Our Little Eskimo Cousin=
    =Our Little French Cousin=
    =Our Little German Cousin=
    =Our Little Grecian Cousin=
    =Our Little Hawaiian Cousin=
    =Our Little Hindu Cousin=
    =Our Little Hungarian Cousin=
    =Our Little Indian Cousin=
    =Our Little Irish Cousin=
    =Our Little Italian Cousin=
    =Our Little Japanese Cousin=
    =Our Little Jewish Cousin=
    =Our Little Korean Cousin=
    =Our Little Malayan (Brown) Cousin=
    =Our Little Mexican Cousin=
    =Our Little Norwegian Cousin=
    =Our Little Panama Cousin=
    =Our Little Persian Cousin=
    =Our Little Philippine Cousin=
    =Our Little Polish Cousin=
    =Our Little Porto Rican Cousin=
    =Our Little Portuguese Cousin=
    =Our Little Roumanian Cousin=
    =Our Little Russian Cousin=
    =Our Little Scotch Cousin=
    =Our Little Servian Cousin=
    =Our Little Siamese Cousin=
    =Our Little Spanish Cousin=
    =Our Little Swedish Cousin=
    =Our Little Swiss Cousin=
    =Our Little Turkish Cousin=

    THE PAGE COMPANY
    53 Beacon Street,      Boston, Mass.

[Illustration: "OFFERED HIM HIS HAND." (_See page 23_)]



Our Little Roumanian Cousin


By Clara Vostrovsky Winlow

Author of "Our Little Bohemian Cousin," "Our Little Bulgarian Cousin,"
etc.

_Illustrated by_ Charles E. Meister

[Illustration]

    Boston
    The Page Company
    MDCCCCXVII



    _Copyright 1917, by_
    THE PAGE COMPANY

    _All rights reserved_

    First Impression, July, 1917



PREFACE


In Southern Europe are a number of comparatively small countries
known as the Balkan States, which remind one very much of quarrelsome
children whose troubles have to be straightened out by older brothers
and sisters. Many years ago there were more independent and partially
independent states than now. Two of these little principalities called
Walachia and Moldavia found that they could better protect themselves
from their neighbors if they stood together. So they combined under one
government, and the present country of Roumania was formed in 1857.

In its native form the name of this country was "Romania," representing
the claim of the inhabitants to descent from the Roman legions
that colonized the country. These colonists, who called themselves
"Romani," or "Rumeni," came from the Carpathian lands and the present
Transylvania in the early Middle Ages.

When once started, Roumania grew quite strong as a state. The people
wanted to learn, and improve their condition, and there is no better
example of this than their farming, for this country has become one of
the greatest grain exporting countries in Europe. This was done, for
one thing, by giving up their old-fashioned wooden plows, which just
scratched the surface of the ground, and using modern steel plows from
other countries which turned the ground over, just as our plows do.

The Roumanian men and women are strong and sturdy, and the men are
noted for their bravery and hardiness. So, among the Roumanian
children, we find hardy, manly little boys and cheerful, if
serious-minded, little girls. However, they like to play, just as do
all of our little foreign cousins. This little book tells about their
everyday games and pastimes, how they live, and how they dress.

The brave fathers and brothers of our little Roumanian cousins took
their places in the battle line to defend their homes in the great war
that is now being fought in Europe. No one knows what the outcome of
this terrible struggle will be. Will Roumania be destroyed, or will she
emerge a greater and more powerful country, standing for liberty and
justice? Time only will tell.



Contents


    CHAPTER                                PAGE
          PREFACE                             v
       I. THE DOCTOR PRESCRIBES               1
      II. JONITZA GETS INTERESTED             7
     III. THE TRIP TO THE COUNTRY            13
      IV. THE JOURNEY'S END                  22
       V. GETTING ACQUAINTED                 26
      VI. AN EXCURSION                       33
     VII. ST. GEORGE'S DAY                   38
    VIII. THE CASTLE OF STEPHEN THE GREAT    47
      IX. A SPINNING BEE                     52
       X. NEW PLANS                          59
      XI. IN THE CARPATHIANS                 62
     XII. IN THE CARPATHIANS (CONTINUED)     70
    XIII. LEAVING THE MOUNTAINS              77
     XIV. THE CAPITAL OF ROUMANIA            86
      XV. THE NATIONAL DANCE                 92
     XVI. AT THE MARKET                      99
    XVII. GOOD-BY                           105



List of Illustrations


                                                          PAGE
    "OFFERED HIM HIS HAND." (_See page 23_)      _Frontispiece_
    "'WE STOOD AS IF PARALYZED'"                            45
    "IT WAS ONLY MARITZA"                                   51
    "THERE . . . LAY TWO LONG SHINY SNAKES"                 72
    "'WILL YOU NOT LET ME TAKE YOU HOME IN THE CAR?'"      100
    "SOMETHING CAREFULLY COVERED WITH A SHEET WAS
          CARRIED MYSTERIOUSLY INTO JONITZA'S ROOM"        109



Our Little Roumanian Cousin



CHAPTER I

THE DOCTOR PRESCRIBES


Jonitza lay sprawled out on the warm carpet in the living-room near a
big brick stove that reached almost to the ceiling. Beside him were his
playthings and two picture books with fancy covers, but he kicked his
slippered feet discontentedly at them, until his mother, seated at the
other end of the room, arose, put down her sewing, and with a scarcely
audible sigh, picked them up and laid them on the table.

Jonitza paid no attention. Ever since he had been seriously ill the
month before, he had grown accustomed to having people wait on him. He
now turned on his back and began tracing in the air with his finger the
pretty stenciled patterns that covered the walls. Tiring of that, he
started beating a monotonous tattoo with one foot, until his mother,
with the faintest shade of impatience, said: "I think you'd better get
up. You've been lying on the floor for a whole hour doing nothing."

Jonitza arose languidly, stretched himself, and walking over to one of
the big double windows, plumped himself down into a deep arm chair in
front of it.

Jonitza's home was a very comfortable one-story house in the city
of Galatz, one of the leading ports on the Danube River, near the
border line between Moldavia and Wallachia, the two provinces which
with Dobrudja, make up the kingdom of Roumania. It was in one of the
best residence districts, at one end of a high earth cliff. Somewhat
below this cliff extended the flat level of the Lower Town, made up
principally of mills and business houses, immense warehouses for grain,
much of which is exported from Roumania, and wharves stretching out to
the river.

The little boy could not see much of this, but far below, in between
the scattered apricot-trees and lilac bushes in the garden, he could
just get a glimpse of an interesting procession of rude carts to which
bullocks or buffaloes were harnessed, toiling slowly upward on a wide
road. He had become so interested in the struggles of one cart that
looked as if it were loaded with the enormous reeds that are used for
fuel by the poorer people of Galatz that he did not hear the bell
ring and so was quite unprepared to have a hand suddenly laid on his
shoulder and to look up into the smiling face of the family Doctor.

Jonitza had a guilty feeling without knowing why and tried his best to
scowl and look away. It wasn't easy though.

"Why aren't you out-of-doors?" the Doctor asked in a surprised tone.

It was Jonitza's turn to be surprised. "Why," he stammered, "it's--too
cold," here he shivered, "I--I--I am not well enough."

"What nonsense!" the Doctor said. "The air is delightful. I've been
traveling around half the day in it. And, even granting that you're not
well--why, fresh air is the only thing that will make you well."

Jonitza suppressed a yawn and looked listlessly about him. The
Doctor shrugged his shoulders as he said: "I see I must leave a new
prescription for you." Saying this, he tore a leaf from his note-book,
hastily wrote something on it, folded it, and handed it to Jonitza's
mother who stood near by, with: "Please treat what is written here
seriously, Mrs. Popescu. I shall have more to say regarding it to your
husband. Now I must hurry away."

But Mrs. Popescu barred the entrance.

"Not until you have had some coffee," she said. At the same moment,
a maid entered with a tray on which were coffee and sweets, the
refreshments usually handed to visitors in Roumania. The Doctor took a
taste of the coffee and one of the sweetmeats and laughingly remarked
as he left: "It's only fresh air that keeps _me_ from breaking down
under the régime to which _I_ am subjected."

It was only after the door had closed behind him that Mrs. Popescu
unfolded the paper that he had given her. As she glanced over it she
gave an exclamation that caused her son to look up inquiringly.

"Come here," she said to him, and, when he approached, she put her arms
around him. "The Doctor asked this to be taken seriously, and he has
ordered--"

Jonitza's eyes grew round with something like terror, as he fixed them
on her.

"It's nothing bad. Do look natural," his mother hastily continued. "He
has simply ordered me--to take you to spend a month on a farm near some
springs in the foot-hills!"



CHAPTER II

JONITZA GETS INTERESTED


Evidently the Doctor did see Jonitza's father, for before the week was
ended it had been definitely decided that as soon as the weather was a
little warmer Mrs. Popescu would leave with her son for a month's stay
in the country. Jonitza had been a trifle interested at first, then he
had grumbled, and, finally, he had resumed the languid air that was so
peculiarly trying to those about him.

There was one thing in particular that he rebelled against even in his
languid state and that was the fact that every afternoon he was now
bundled up and ordered out-of-doors for an hour.

"I don't want to go," he would say every time; and every time his
mother would kiss him and answer sweetly, "It is for your own good. We
must do what the Doctor orders."

Then he would go out into the garden with its lilac and acacia bushes
that were just beginning to show leaf buds and walk slowly up and
down or stand first on one foot and then on the other as if unable to
decide what to do. But one day things went differently. Whether it was
due to the air having a genuine spring flavor for the first time that
year, or to the fact that it was a holiday and he had been left at home
with a couple of servants, or to the fact that the departure for the
foot-hills had been definitely set for the first day of the following
week, or to some other entirely different cause, in any case there was
quite an alert look about the boy and even something of a sparkle in
his eyes.

Maritza, the maid, noticed it and remarked to the cook: "Master Jonitza
looks quite spry to-day. If he were well, I'd warrant he would get into
some mischief." Then she forgot all about him.

A group of boys that Jonitza knew slightly passed by and one seeing him
called out: "Come on with us. We're going to the marsh." To his own
surprise, Jonitza called back, "All right," and joined them.

When they reached a marshy plain bordering on the Danube some of the
boys left them, and Jonitza found himself alone with two boys, both
younger than himself. All three were tired from the walk, and finding
the stump of an old tree, sat down on it and amused themselves counting
the ducks that they saw. Suddenly something that his tutor had told
him occurred to Jonitza. "Do you know," he said, "that there are more
varieties of ducks on the Danube than in most parts of the world? Let's
see how many different ones we can make out."

The little boys did not take kindly to the suggestion. "I am hungry,"
one of them said; "let's go home."

So back the three began to trudge, now and then throwing a stone into
the air, or, when they could, into the water.

Jonitza felt more tired than he cared to confess to the two youngsters
and inwardly planned to lie down as soon as he came within doors. "I'll
be home in less than fifteen minutes, now!" he suddenly exclaimed,
thinking aloud.

"How can you and see me dance?" said a voice behind him so unexpectedly
that Jonitza jumped. Turning, he saw a laughing peasant all decorated
with tiny bells.

"Oh, jolly!" the other boys shouted. "There's going to be a dance! Come
on!"

Those little bells must have said "Come on" too, for Jonitza found
himself trying to keep up with the peasant's rapid strides.

Down in the Lower Town, before one of the old domed churches, they
found a crowd gathered. Although there was nothing unusual about such
a gathering, one could see from the faces that something unusual was
expected.

It was not a silent expectation, however. Everywhere people were
talking and laughing and a few young men were even singing. As soon as
the peasant with bells appeared, a shout arose. At the same instant a
troop of other peasants, all attired in their gay embroidered national
costumes, with bells at their girdles and on their sleeves, came in a
body into the square, and taking their places began to dance and shout
and sing and stamp their feet. Some one said this was the Pyrrhic
Dance that was sacred in ancient mythology, and that had come to the
Roumanians from their Roman forefathers; a dance to prevent Saturn
from hearing the voice of his infant son Jupiter, lest he devour him.
Whether this explained it or not there was no doubt of the audience
liking it, for at its conclusion all clapped their hands and burst
into boisterous exclamations of delight. Jonitza, feeling some of the
excitement, clapped too, and no longer conscious of any tired feeling
waited until almost every one had gone before he made his way slowly
home.



CHAPTER III

THE TRIP TO THE COUNTRY


On Tuesday of the following week Jonitza, his mother, and the maid
Maritza, after a short trip on the train, were being driven over the
vast level and wonderfully fertile plains of Roumania, that stretched
before them like a great green sea. There were already signs that the
short spring that Roumania has would soon change into summer. Wild
flowers were to be seen here and there and birds twittered and flew
about.

The way lay among thatched farm-houses whose gleaming walls showed that
they had been freshly whitewashed at Easter. Now and then a peasant
seated in a rude wagon, drawn by beautiful, creamy, short-legged oxen
with wide-spreading horns, saluted them gravely.

At a little elevation in the road they passed a group of dug-outs
called _bordei_, with turf-covered roofs and shapeless clay chimneys.
The windows in these _bordei_ were merely irregular holes in the mud
walls. At the door leading down into one of these primitive houses
stood an attractive looking woman, with a bright yellow kerchief over
her head, and another around her neck. She was busily spinning while
she crooned a lullaby to a baby who lay blinking its eyes in an oval
wooden box swinging from the branches of a tree near by.

Not far from these _bordei_ was a cemetery filled with crosses of the
oddest possible shapes. It really seemed as if the people had tried to
find a new design for each new grave.

They passed wayside crosses also, before some of which peasants were
kneeling in prayer.

But, despite these interesting things, there was something tiring in
the long journey over the monotonously level plains, and Jonitza grew
more and more restless. His pretty mother noticed it and drawing him to
her she began to tell him the most interesting stories. First of all
about Trajan, the great Roman Emperor, who came to their country so
many centuries ago and conquered the people who then inhabited it. She
described to him the great column in Rome commemorating his victory,
and told him how proud every Roumanian was that he was descended from
the soldiers that the Emperor left to guard the new possessions.

"Is that why we call the thunder Trajan's voice?" asked Jonitza.

"Perhaps," his mother answered. "We certainly love to call things by
his name."

"The Milky Way is Trajan's Road, isn't it?" again inquired Jonitza.

His mother nodded.

"The boys call the ditch by the lumber mill Trajan's Moat," Jonitza
continued.

His mother smiled. "Roumania is full of Trajan's moats; it would be
hard to find a village that hasn't one. There are many interesting
stories," continued his mother, "connected with our history. You know,
from your tutor, that the section of Roumania in which we live is
called Moldavia. Would you like to hear the old legend as to how it got
its name?"

"Please tell it to me," her son answered eagerly, his eyes sparkling
with interest.

"Once upon a time," began his mother, "a Prince called Bogdan lived in
this part of the world. Now, Bogdan had a dog whom he valued above all
the other dogs that he owned.

"One day, while out hunting, this dog, whose name was Molda, caught
sight of a buffalo and chased it to the very brink of a river. When
the terrified buffalo waded into the water the dog in his excitement
followed, was caught in the current and drowned.

"When his followers saw how deeply affected by the dog's death Bogdan
was, they pursued the buffalo, killed it, and taking its head back with
them, nailed it over the entrance to the Palace.

"But this did not lessen the Prince's grief. Whenever possible he would
go to the river's banks to mourn. The people, seeing him there, would
repeat the story, so that after a while the river became associated
with the name of the dog and was spoken of as the Moldava. Gradually
the name, slightly modified, was applied also to all of the surrounding
country."

"Please tell me more stories about Moldavia," begged Jonitza, when his
mother had been silent for some time.

"Listen then to the story of Movila," again began his mother, glad to
see that the restless look had left her son's face. "This is a story
of King Stephen who was great in mind but very small in body. Once in
a battle with Hungarians his horse was killed under him. As the horse
fell, the King was caught by one of his heralds, a man as large as
Stephen was small. After assisting him to his feet, the herald offered
Stephen his own horse. The King looked up at the big animal with a
frown, but the herald, kneeling before him, placed Stephen's foot on
his shoulder and exclaimed: 'Oh, Prince, allow me to serve you as a
mole-hill.'

"'Mole-hill,' returned Stephen, getting on the horse, 'I will make a
mountain of you.'

"Then Fortune favored Stephen and soon the victory was his. No sooner
was he back in camp than he sent for the herald. When the latter came,
he found Stephen surrounded by his court. 'Herald,' said Stephen, 'thou
hast served me as a mole-hill. In return I give thee the name of Movila
(little mountain). Thou shalt have no other. Thou gavest me thy horse
in my need. In return, I give thee five full domains over which thou
shalt rule.'"

The carriage here stopped before a tiny tavern in a little vineyard
surrounded town. They were disappointed in finding that they could get
nothing for lunch except raw onions with salt and _mamaliga_, the cold
corn meal mush that is eaten everywhere throughout peasant Roumania. At
first Mrs. Popescu thought they would eat from their own well-filled
lunch basket, but when Maritza remarked that _mamaliga_ was really very
good, she changed her mind. Then, as they seated themselves before a
table on the vine-covered veranda, she asked Maritza to tell them how
the _mamaliga_ is prepared.

"The water must be hot," said the maid, "before the meal is stirred
into it. You continue stirring until it is almost done, then you can
add a little grated cheese. At our house, when it is well cooked, we
put it into a cloth and tie it up."

Here some dried fish which the owner of the tavern had perhaps not
intended to serve at first, were laid on the table.

"These fish have a nice flavor," remarked Mrs. Popescu.

"I know how they also are prepared," said Maritza, "for my brother has
helped get them ready."

"Suppose you tell us about it, Maritza," said Mrs. Popescu, evidently
not wishing the party to hurry.

"Very well, ma'am," consented the maid. "First, a kind of basket work
of osiers is built up. This is covered with walnut leaves in which the
fish are wrapped. The building is then filled with smoke for several
days, or until the fish look yellow and smell good. They are then taken
down, made into bundles and surrounded by pine-tree branches, which add
a new flavor to them that most people like."

Here the tavern-keeper again appeared with a bottle of the damson plum
brandy for which Roumania is famous. But Mrs. Popescu shook her head.
"Not this time," she said smiling.

From this little town the journey was a steady climb upward amid oak,
beech and lime-trees. There were more crosses along the roadside. In
one spot there was a large group of them, all brightly painted and
roofed over.

It was not until late in the afternoon that they came in sight of the
village near which the farm lay where they were to stay for a while.
Full of expectations of a good supper, they drove past it and on to a
pleasant and prosperous looking dwelling. In the front of the broad
veranda an interesting group stood waiting to welcome them.



CHAPTER IV

THE JOURNEY'S END


The medium-sized, vigorous-looking man who formed one of the group on
the veranda, hurried forward to meet them. He was dark with long black
wavy hair. He wore white woolen trousers, a sort of big sleeved tunic
or shirt of coarse but very clean linen, well belted in at the waist
by a broad scarlet woolen scarf. Over this was a sleeveless sheepskin
jacket, the wool inside, the outside gayly embroidered. On his feet
were goatskin sandals.

His wife was slender and quite fair. Like her husband, she was
evidently wearing a holiday dress. This was a white gown covered
with red and black embroidery, a brightly colored apron, and several
necklaces of colored beads and coins. A gay kerchief, fringed with a
row of spangles, was set well back on her light brown hair. She also
advanced to meet the newcomers.

A bright-eyed boy of about twelve and a very pretty girl about four
years younger were left standing and staring by the doorway. After
greetings had been exchanged and all had descended from the carriage,
the farmer said something to his son who immediately went up to Jonitza
and offered him his hand. At the same time he proposed showing him the
grounds while supper was being placed on the table.

Jonitza at once accepted the offer. He was anxious to see what was
outside, and, besides, his legs felt so stiff from the long ride that
he longed to exercise them.

Neither of the boys spoke at first, although they glanced shyly at each
other now and then. At a corner of the house the ice was broken in an
unexpected fashion. They walked right into a flock of geese who set up
a "Honk! Honk!" and made a peck at Jonitza who happened to disturb them
most.

Taken by surprise, Jonitza jumped awkwardly to one side. Nicolaia,
his companion, could not restrain a laugh. The next minute, evidently
fearing that he had hurt his new acquaintance's feelings, he put his
hand on his shoulder in a friendly way and suggested a visit to the
pigs.

"Katinka," he called to his sister, who was shyly following them, "go
get something to take to the pigs."

Katinka turned obediently and ran into the house. She soon reappeared,
carefully holding a pan.

The pigs proved worth visiting. They were of the wild boar species with
an upright row of funny hard bristles on their backs. They were so full
of play, too, that Jonitza was genuinely sorry to hear the call to
supper.

"It's just splendid here!" he whispered to his mother as he saw her for
an instant alone before entering the big kitchen which served also as
dining-room.

Jonitza now noticed that although the farmer and his son had kept their
hats on in the house, they were careful to remove them before sitting
down to the meal.

This meal was quite an elaborate one. There was fishroe and olives,
mutton and cheese, and rye bread about two inches thick and pierced all
over with a fork. This was broken, not cut. There was also a kind of
_mamaliga_ cooked in milk and called _balmosch_. This was placed on the
table on a big wooden platter, cut with a string, and eaten with layers
of cheese.



CHAPTER V

GETTING ACQUAINTED


Jonitza and his mother were out early next morning after a breakfast of
bacon and _mamaliga_.

The farm-house at which they were staying looked attractive in its
cleanliness. It had been recently whitewashed and the doors and window
frames painted a bright blue. It was built entirely of timber. The roof
consisted of thin strips of wood laid closely row upon row. Near the
house were some fruit-trees and lilac bushes and a small flower garden
in which basil and gilliflowers, so often mentioned in Roumanian folk
songs, were conspicuous.

Inside, the big living-room had a comfortable, homey air. The walls
were partially covered with hand-woven tapestries. In one corner was
a huge Dutch looking stove, while opposite, under an ikon, stood the
primitive loom that is still to be seen in all Roumanian farm-houses.
Besides the table on which the meals were served, there were some
plain three-legged chairs, a large chest, a smaller table on which the
basket of Easter eggs still stood, and a sort of couch which served
Nicolaia as a bed at night. Its corn husk mattress had a pretty cover
with an embroidered ruffle over it in the daytime. The straw pillows
then changed their clothes for more fancy ones and were placed evenly
against the wall.

Jonitza was anxious to show his mother the sportive pigs and he lost
no time in marching her to them. When she had expressed sufficient
admiration, they wandered to the well with its long sweep to which a
rock was attached, and crossed themselves before the brightly painted
crosses that were on each side of it. Katinka came out with a pitcher
while they stood there, and knelt in prayer before the crosses before
drawing up the water.

"Where is Nicolaia?" they asked her. She pointed to the cow-shed where
they found him hard at work.

He smiled at them in greeting.

"This is my job," he said, "until I take the sheep to pasture in the
mountains, for my mother is to let me do so this year."

Jonitza watched his robust companion with some envy as he went
cheerfully about what he had to do. Nicolaia did it all easily and
quickly; at the same time he did not neglect to make an occasional
pleasant remark, and he did this with the courtesy that seems natural
to the Roumanian peasant. Among other things he told them the names of
some of the beautiful cream-colored oxen that his father owned. They
were very high-sounding ones. There were Antony and Cæsar, Cassius and
Brutus, Augustus, and, of course, Trajan, the finest-looking creature
of all.

Then, almost without warning, the weather changed, a heavy rain setting
in. This caused all, except the father who was absent, to gather in the
big living-room. Here Katinka, in a matter-of-fact way, took out some
embroidery on linen, which at the age of eight she was already getting
ready for her bridal trousseau. Later she showed Mrs. Popescu a rug
that she was beginning to weave as a covering for her bed.

In the meantime, Mrs. Popescu and Maritza also took out some
embroidery, the peasant mother sat down at the loom, and Nicolaia
brought out a bit of wood-carving. This, he said, was now being taught
in the village school. Jonitza alone had no work. He stood for a while
by the window watching the rain splash against it and the wind shake
the trees as if it meant to uproot them. It was not long, however,
before he wandered to where Nicolaia sat and watched him work.

Mrs. Popescu looked over at her idle son several times. A sudden
inspiration made her say: "You seem to carve very nicely, Nicolaia. How
would you like to be Jonitza's teacher and earn a little money of your
own?"

"Will you?" asked Jonitza dropping on the floor beside Nicolaia. The
peasant boy looked up with a pleased smile. "If you think I know
enough," he answered modestly, "I'll be glad to teach you."

Here his mother could not keep from remarking with a proud air: "The
school teacher takes an interest in Nicolaia. He has advised him to
attend the Government School of Fruit Culture which is in the next
village from ours. He says he would learn other things besides taking
care of fruit-trees there. But that isn't possible, for he's promised
as an apprentice to his uncle in Bukurest. Well, he'll learn a great
deal there, too."

"Oh, mother," exclaimed Nicolaia when his mother had left the loom and
taken up some knitting, "while we are working won't you sing some songs
as you do when we're alone?"

His mother's fair face flushed as she looked shyly at Mrs. Popescu. "I
must get things ready for the mid-day meal," she said rising.

As soon as her back was turned, Mrs. Popescu nodded to good-natured
Maritza who understood and began to sing a song about a _heiduk_, the
traditional hero of the Roumanian peasantry, a person as fascinating as
our own Robin Hood. The song told how handsome he was, how winning his
ways, how fearless his manner towards tyrants, how kind to the poor and
unfortunate.

Nicolaia's mother was back in her place before the maid finished. "That
was very nice, dear," she remarked. "And now I can't do less than sing
a song, too. It'll be about a woman, the bravest shepherdess that ever
was seen."

This was evidently a favorite with the children, for they joined in an
odd refrain that occurred every once in a while.

She had scarcely finished when the sun came out to announce that the
rain was over. A moment after the door opened and her husband entered.



CHAPTER VI

AN EXCURSION


During the meal that followed, the farmer turned to his son with: "You
will have to go to the Convent for me this afternoon. I can't spare the
time myself. And perhaps"--here he turned to Mrs. Popescu--"you and
your son might like the trip. It would give you a chance to see one of
our old-time institutions."

Mrs. Popescu thanked him. "Nothing could be pleasanter," she said.

Soon all three were seated on a rough timber cart with apparently
nothing to hold it together. To the cart were harnessed two moody
looking buffaloes with horns lying almost flat along their necks. The
cart swayed and twisted up the rough road when suddenly Nicolaia gave
an excited exclamation. They were just in the middle of one of the
great swollen streams that flowed everywhere over the mountains.

"What has happened?" asked Mrs. Popescu anxiously, for Nicolaia was
standing up and urging the animals forward.

Nicolaia gave a short, funny laugh. "The buffaloes want to take a
bath," he answered, and again shouted at them. Fortunately, after a
display of much stubbornness on their part, he did persuade them that
neither the time nor the place was suitable for bathing, and they moved
slowly on.

After safely passing through all the ruts and bogs, the creaking cart
at length stopped before what was called the "Guest House" on one side
of an old half-deserted convent. A servant dressed in the national
costume, with a wide hat on his long curling hair, came to meet them
and bid them welcome. Later one of the inmates, an elderly woman in
a loose brown dress, appeared bringing coffee, preserved fruit, and
buffalo milk, which Jonitza thought had a very peculiar flavor.

After they had partaken of this refreshment and expressed their
appreciation of the courtesy, and while Nicolaia was busy with his
errand, Mrs. Popescu and Jonitza visited the church of the Convent
and looked at the crude frescoes of heaven and hell that adorned its
walls. There were many ikons or pictures of saints about, for Roumania
is a Greek Catholic country like Russia. The large size of the Convent
showed that it must have enjoyed great prosperity in former times. Now
a deep quiet reigned everywhere.

Nicolaia grew quite talkative on the way back; he told of the source of
one of the streams that they passed and how difficult it was to get to
it, of a hermit cave in another part of the mountains in which the bats
fly at you when you enter, and finally, of some of his own immediate
plans. He talked at length about a friend called Demetrius, who lived
on the other side of the village and whom he planned to see on the
following day, when his own work was done. "Would you like to visit him
with me?" he asked, turning politely to Jonitza.

"Like!" repeated Jonitza almost rudely. "Of course."

They were passing through the village at the time and Mrs. Popescu
noticed that on certain houses a flower was painted. She pointed this
out. "That," explained Nicolaia, "is to let every one know that a
maiden lives there."

A little further on they met a branch entwined cart. In it sat two
girls gayly talking. One of them called to Nicolaia in passing.

The girls did not look at all alike and Mrs. Popescu wondered if they
were sisters.

"No," said Nicolaia, "they are only _surata_, that is, they have
adopted each other as sisters. Any girls can do that if they love each
other enough. I was at the Church when the ceremony was performed, and
saw their feet chained together in token of the bond. It made them the
same as born sisters. Sometimes a young man adopts another young man
for his brother in the same way. The priest always asks them if they
are sure of their affection, for he says the ceremony makes the new
relationship very binding."



CHAPTER VII

ST. GEORGE'S DAY


The next day the boys walked over to the home of Nicolaia's village
friend, Demetrius, and here a delightful surprise awaited them. Two
young bear cubs trotted like dogs at the feet of the village boy as he
came to meet them.

"Where did you get these?" both boys shouted with delight.

"From my uncle," returned Demetrius. "He captured them after their
mother had been killed. At first they had to be fed sheep milk with a
spoon."

As he spoke, one of the little fellows ran up a tree in the yard and
the other began to play with a young puppy. Soon the boys were trying
to help Demetrius teach them to turn somersaults and do other tricks.
They gave this up only when they remembered there were other things to
settle before parting. These things all related to St. George's Day,
or, as it is sometimes called, the "Witch's Sabbath." This would come
the very last of the week. There were mysteries in regard to the day,
for the boys spoke in whispers while Jonitza was trying to make one of
the bears jump through a hoop. He was so much interested in the antics
of the little creatures that he paid no attention until just at leaving
he heard something which made him open his eyes wide. Hidden treasure
was to be found!

On the way home he answered Nicolaia in monosyllables and looked moody,
much to the latter's surprise. "What's the matter?" Nicolaia finally
asked.

For answer Jonitza glared and then burst out with: "What have I done
that you won't let me go with you on St. George's Eve?"

Nicolaia was taken aback. "You've done nothing," he made haste to say.
"But this must be kept a secret and your mother wouldn't like your
going."

"I won't tell her," said Jonitza, wincing a little as he spoke; "that
is--not until--eh--I show her the treasure. Then she won't care."

Nicolaia looked up and down the road as if trying to find a way out of
a difficulty. At last he said faintly, "Well, all right, if you can
meet us in the yard by the cow-sheds at ten o'clock."

On the day before the "Witch's Sabbath," Jonitza watched Nicolaia's
father cut square blocks of turf and place them before every door and
window of the farm-house and stables. "Why are you doing that?" he
asked. The farmer smiled at him but did not answer. Katinka, however,
came and whispered that it was to keep out the witches. She turned
from him to help her father place thorn branches here and there in the
cut turf. Jonitza followed every act with a fascinated air. "What's
that for?" he asked her. "The witches run when they see thorns," she
explained, smiling at the thought.

Two of the men who were helping on the farm at the time, offered to
keep watch all night near the stables lest the witches should charm the
cattle and do them harm. Mrs. Popescu, who heard them make the offer,
asked them if they really believed in witches.

They looked at her with the air of grown up children. "If it wasn't
witches," said one with a triumphant air, "what made old Theodoresco's
cow give bloody milk last year for several months beginning the very
next day after the 'Witch's Sabbath'?" Mrs. Popescu, seeing that it
would be useless to argue the question, left them.

A half hour later, Nicolaia appeared and beckoned to Jonitza to follow
him indoors. Here he took an earthen jar from a closet. "What do you
think that is?" he asked.

"One of your mother's jars," Jonitza answered.

"No," said Nicolaia without smiling. "Put your hand inside and see what
you find."

Jonitza did so and brought out some ancient coins dating back to
pre-Roman times.

"My father is keeping these for luck. He found them when he was
plowing," said Nicolaia. "I am showing this to you because I thought
you ought to know that it may be that kind of treasure that we'll find
to-night."

Jonitza had this constantly in mind the rest of the day. "How wonderful
it would be to find a real treasure," he kept thinking. He ate little
for supper, went to bed at once when his mother suggested it, and tried
very hard to keep from falling asleep. But alas, despite his efforts,
sleep came and it was a very deep sleep, so that when he awoke it was
bright morning.

He hurried out, ashamed of himself, and found his friend looking
very drowsy and grinning in a somewhat downcast way. In answer to
Jonitza's hurried explanations of what had happened to himself and
urgent questions, Nicolaia said: "It was just after ten o'clock when we
started. I was relieved that you didn't appear, for I didn't know what
might happen. There was no moon at the time, but the stars were out,
and as we know the hills well, Demetrius and I had no trouble making
our way over them. We heard all sorts of strange noises, but we weren't
a bit afraid. I thought we should surely find the treasure. You see,
they say around here that it is easiest for the one born on a Sunday
or at midday; and Demetrius was born just two minutes after noon on a
Sunday. So that ought to count.

"We spoke only in whispers as we tried to look in every direction at
once. Each of us wanted to be the first to see the blue flame which
shows where the treasure lies hidden. It must have been past midnight
when Demetrius seized hold of my arm. I felt his hand tremble.

[Illustration: "'WE STOOD AS IF PARALYZED'"]

"'Do you see that?' he whispered.

"I looked where he pointed and saw in the distance what really seemed
like a tiny fire. It was not particularly blue but we did not think of
that. I felt for my knife, for it must be thrown through the flame so
that the spirits who guard the treasure won't harm you.

"'Have you your knife?' I whispered back.

"'Yes,' returned Demetrius. 'I'll throw first, and if I miss, you throw
right after.' Before this we had not minded anything, but now as we
crept on, we shuddered whenever we stepped on a dry twig or caused a
stone to roll down hill.

"As we came nearer there was no sign of flame but there were bright
patches on the ground as if from the remains of a fire. This could just
be seen around a big bowlder where we stopped for a moment to gain
courage for the final step.

"As we stood there we heard a sound as of some creature rolling
over. Then on the other side of the big rock, a huge form arose. We
distinctly heard some cuss words and a threat so terrible that we stood
as if paralyzed. Suddenly the figure began to move, and forgetful of
everything else but our own safety, we ran down the hillside, stumbling
over each other, now rolling a way, tearing our clothes on thorn
bushes, and generally having a hard time until we both landed in a
brook. We crawled out very much chilled and stood listening. Everything
about us was quiet, so I don't know whether we were followed or not.
However, we did not dare return.

"So, of course, we didn't get any treasure. My father says it was
probably some old gypsy, but I know it was a bad spirit, for as I have
said, it was after midnight, and good spirits show the flame only till
twelve. When it is seen later, the treasure is guarded by bad spirits."



CHAPTER VIII

THE CASTLE OF STEPHEN THE GREAT


How quickly the month at the farm-house passed! Every day there was so
much to see and do, and once in a while there was an excursion to some
place of interest. The furthest one taken was when Jonitza and Katinka
went with the maid who had accompanied Jonitza's mother to the country,
for a couple of days' visit to her home in a place called Niamtz.

The day after they reached the straggling village, the children were
allowed out to play. They were attracted to a great red earth cliff,
where they began digging tunnels and building little cave houses.
Tiring of that they wandered up toward the cliff's summit, gathering
the beautiful wild flowers that they found on the way, and resting
now and then under some leafy tree. When they reached the top they
both shouted with delight at finding the ruins of a castle. What a
delightful place in which to play! There were four corner towers,
strong buttresses and battlemented walls, as well as a large moat all
the way around, now overgrown with trees.

Jonitza, who was blessed with a good memory, recalled what he had
been told about the place and so hastened to instruct Katinka in his
own fashion, emphasizing every word that he considered of importance.
"This," said he, in his tutor's manner, "is the old castle celebrated
in many of our songs, of one of our greatest kings called _Stephen the
Great_.

"One day, Stephen the Great was fighting the Turks who were _winning_.
He thought it was no use fighting any longer and made for home as
quickly as he could. He thought _his mother_ would be _glad_ he wasn't
killed. But instead of that she met him at the _big_ gate you see
over there, and told him he ought to be ashamed to _give up_; that he
was fighting to free his people, and that she wouldn't _ever_ open
the gates to him and his army unless he came back as _victor_." (Here
Jonitza gave an especial emphasis to the last word.) "So Stephen said,
'All right,' and went back. He met the Turks in a narrow valley and was
so mad that he killed almost every one of them. He was a very brave
man, and I'm going to be like him."

These last words were hardly spoken when there was a clap of thunder
and flash of lightning, followed by a sudden heavy downpour of rain.
The children hurried to shelter which they found in one of the towers.

[Illustration: "IT WAS ONLY MARITZA"]

It was dark there and the wind and rain threatened to break through
the walls. Bat-like things flew about, and strange noises, like the
mournful voices of imprisoned spirits, began to be heard. Jonitza lost
his brave air entirely as he and his companion crouched side by side
against one of the walls. Suddenly there was a peculiarly long whistle,
probably made by the wind passing through some crevice. Katinka gave a
little shriek. "It is the _Stafii_," she cried, clinging to her friend.

Jonitza, though trembling, put his arm around her. He knew very well
that she was referring to harmful elves whom all the Roumanian country
folk believe dwell in ruins and are always unfriendly to human beings.
He tried to think of something comforting to say, but at first only
managed to clear his throat. After a bit what he did whisper was: "We
ought to have some milk to give them." At this Katinka cried more than
ever. "That's what they say, but we haven't any, we haven't any," she
repeated almost in a shriek.

This was followed by another shriek as a dark form shut out what little
light reached them. But it was only Maritza, who had come with a big
umbrella to their rescue.



CHAPTER IX

A SPINNING BEE


The evening before they left Niamtz, a crowd of Maritza's girl friends
gathered at her home for a Spinning Bee.

They came with heads uncovered, for only married women in Roumania wear
veils or kerchiefs. They were all dressed in holiday finery, with their
hair beautifully waved.

At first a merry little maiden with very red cheeks, and very black
eyebrows over sparkling eyes, and black hair twisted into a double
plait, came in for a good deal of teasing for some reason or other. She
didn't seem to mind it and her bright answers caused much laughter and
good feeling. Finally she succeeded in drawing attention from herself
by asking a riddle. This was followed by another and another until
everybody in the room was guessing.

Then Maritza's mother, who had been busy getting refreshments ready,
came in exclaiming, "Time for work, girls!"

At this there was a general cry of "Maritza!" "We want Maritza!"
"Maritza must be our leader!"

Maritza stepped forward with some show of reluctance. "There are better
spinners and better singers than I am," she said modestly. But the
girls, rising quickly, formed a ring around her, singing in chorus,
"It's you we want."

Then Maritza took her spindle and began to spin. At the same time she
improvised a strange song all about a mysterious _heiduk_ or chieftain
who passed through their village. Suddenly she threw her spindle to the
black-eyed, red-cheeked maiden, holding it by a long thread as she did
so. The merry maiden caught it and was obliged to continue both the
spinning and singing while Maritza pulled out the flax. This required
much dexterity.

When each girl had had her turn, both in spinning and singing,
refreshments were passed around. There was _mamaliga_, baked pumpkin,
potatoes, and last of all, plenty of popcorn.

Then, while all seated resumed their work, one of their number was
begged for a story.

She smilingly consented, and told the following strange and pathetic
tale.


THE STORY OF A LILAC TREE

"This is a story of what once must have taken place, for if it had
never occurred, I would not now have it to tell.

"In a little valley among the high mountains, there lived a maiden all
alone. She worked all day at her spinning and weaving and sang with joy
as she worked.

"So the years went on, each year adding loveliness to her face and
figure. One day when out gathering firewood for her small needs she
heard what sounded like a cry of pain. Making her way into the thicket
she found a man sorely wounded.

"She spoke to him but he had become unconscious, and, not knowing what
else to do, she took him in her strong arms and carried him to her hut
and laid him on her own bed. Then she washed out his wounds and tended
him like a sister.

"As soon as he could speak, he tried to express his gratitude. 'Dear
maiden,' he said, 'had it not been for you I should never again have
seen the light of day, and even as it is, I fear I shall never walk
again. For it was no ordinary mortal by whom I was wounded, but a demon
of some kind who threatened that even should I survive, all power to
move my legs will have left me. Of what good will life then be to me?
Trouble yourself no longer, sweet maiden, to cure me. Rather let my
wounds bleed anew.'

"But the beautiful girl shook her head. 'Why should we believe all that
ill?' she said. 'I am skilled in herb lore and shall cure you.'

"For more than a week the man lay in bed while the girl tended him. And
she grew to love him, he was so patient, so grateful for all she did.
Then, one morning, he looked brightly at her: 'Lo, I am cured.' And he
sat up in bed. But when he tried to get down he could not.

"And the next day it was the same and the next. But the man did not
speak of any disappointment. Instead, he told his nurse strange stories
of the life he had seen, and one day something that she found hard to
bear. It was of the beautiful woman whom he loved and would have wed.

"The maiden, though now sad, still tended him faithfully, but to no
avail. At last, in her distress, she sought out a witch who was famed
for her wisdom over the whole mountain side.

"'The man is under enchantment,' said the old woman. 'He knows his
cure, but will not tell it to thee.'

"'Tell me what it is!' exclaimed the maiden. 'I will pay any price for
the cure!'

"'Are you sure?' asked the witch with a disagreeable laugh.

"'I am sure,' answered the maiden.

"'Know then,' said the witch, 'that only a virgin life like yours can
save him. Will you give your life?'

"The girl looked down in thought. At last she spoke. 'If it is indeed
so, why should I not? He is strong again and the world has need of
him. He loves another from whom only bewitchment separates him. The
happiness of two is worth the sacrifice of one. I will give my life
that they may wed.'

"The next morning when the man made his daily trial to arise, he found
to his amazement that he could do so. He looked around for the maiden,
but she was nowhere to be seen. He waited all day and till the next
morning but she did not come. Then, full of regret, he went away. Near
the threshold of the hut he stopped to pick a branch of fragrant lilac.
As he did so, the whole bush swayed with delight, and it seemed to him
that a spirit within it called his name as he turned away."



CHAPTER X

NEW PLANS


Jonitza tried to forget that the time for leaving the country was
approaching. The month had meant much to him. It had made a remarkable
change in his appearance. His listless air had given way to a wide
awake interested look, and his pale cheeks had already something of a
ruddy hue.

Although for her own sake, Mrs. Popescu longed for a return home, she
felt something like guilt in taking her son back with her. Every night
she gave much thought to the subject and every night she knelt in
prayer before the ikon that hung in her bedroom, asking that light be
given her as to her duty. Finally, unable to decide, she wrote a long
letter to her busy husband and begged his advice.

Instead of a written answer, her husband himself arrived. His solution
of the difficulty startled her.

"Why shouldn't Jonitza accompany Nicolaia as a sheep herder into the
Carpathians?"

"I'm afraid," she said, "there are gypsies there--and bad
shepherds--and wild animals--and the life is too hard."

Her husband made light of all these things. "I've talked it over," he
said, "with the Doctor. He declares that the only trouble with our
boy is that we've molly-coddled him. He advised me to trust him to
Nicolaia, whose family he knows. He says that Jonitza is just the age
to enjoy the experience and that he will thank us all his life for it."

But at first Mrs. Popescu did not agree. "He has grown much heartier,"
she said. "Perhaps he would get along very well at home now."

So it was not settled until after the whole thing was talked over with
the peasant and his wife and Mrs. Popescu was persuaded that her son
would be in safe hands and that, besides, the dangers were less than in
the city. Then Katinka was sent to call in the boys who were busy as
usual with some outside work. They came in with a surprised air, but
when all was explained to them both set up a shout that echoed from the
darkened rafters of the room.

Mr. Popescu laughed with pleasure. "Can that be really my son?" he said.



CHAPTER XI

IN THE CARPATHIANS


"I feel as free as a bird!" Jonitza could not help exclaiming when they
had actually started with their flocks for the Carpathian mountains.
Like his friend, he was dressed in typical shepherd costume, consisting
of a coarse white linen shirt and trousers, a long mantle of very heavy
wool, and a straight round sheepskin cap. His very shoes were the same,
for the boys had fashioned both pair together. They were made of pieces
of goatskin that had been soaked in water until soft, gathered into
pleats by means of thongs over the ankles, while other bits of thong
held them securely in place.

They had a big flock of sheep under their charge, for besides those
belonging to Nicolaia's father they were to herd those belonging to the
richest man in that neighborhood. Besides the sheep, two intelligent
wolf dogs belonging to the neighbor went with them, as well as a
donkey, to be used later to carry the packs of cheese and milk.

It was high time for the boys to start, for the other shepherds had
gone, and the hot Roumanian summer was beginning to be felt.

Although Nicolaia had already spent two summers on the mountains this
was the first time that he was in charge of so large a flock. In
consequence he shared some of Jonitza's excitement. There was another
reason why this summer might prove a notable one for him. It was
probably his last experience of the kind, for his parents had decided
to have him apprenticed that autumn to his uncle, a cabinet maker in
the city of Bukurest, and apprenticeships in Roumania are for six years.

It was a hard climb for the boys. At first as they made their way
upward they occasionally passed one-room shanties, each shared by an
entire family and all the domestic animals. At the last one of these
they stopped to ask for a drink of water. The door was open and inside
they could see the scanty furniture--a rude table, a bench, a stove,
and a cot covered with the skins of wild beasts. A fierce looking man
answered their call and handed them the water with so surly an air that
Nicolaia, who was accustomed to the great hospitality of the section
where he lived, felt a mingling of amazement and indignation. There
was no garden of any kind around this house, but there was a wealth of
wild flowers. Yellow foxgloves, gladiolas, and wild honeysuckle seemed
determined to make the place a thing of beauty.

Just at noon, near one of the little streams that constantly crossed
their path, they came upon a small band of the gypsies that are as
numerous in Roumania as in Hungary. By a small fire over which a kettle
hung, sat two women. A short distance from them lay a dark-skinned lad,
with matted hair, while leaning against a giant beech on the other
side, was a young man playing a weird air that made one think of a
mountain storm, on a crude violin.

From this wayside camp, the path wound around and around until at last
it suddenly branched into two parts. Nicolaia stopped at this point
perplexed. "I do not remember this," he said, as he chose the broader
looking of the two roads. Soon, however, he saw the mistake he made in
doing so. What he had taken for a path was the channel of a mountain
torrent. It ended in a steep abyss, down which some of the sheep had
already scrambled.

The boys spent fully half an hour of the hardest kind of work before
they got these sheep back. When, shortly after, they came to a grassy
valley, both, panting hard, threw themselves under a tree.

"This is where we'll camp for the night," said Nicolaia, "now that we
have all the sheep together." As he spoke, he unpacked the supper of
cold meat, onions, and _mamaliga_ that they had brought with them. They
also helped themselves to a drink of sheep's milk, which is richer and
thicker than cow's and of quite a different flavor.

The sun was already low, and when it sank from sight, darkness followed
very soon. Quickly wrapping themselves in their mantles, the boys lay
down beside their sheep. So strenuous had the day been, that hardly had
they exchanged a few sentences than both were fast asleep.

The next day, after an early breakfast, they were again on their way.
The scenery around was grandly wild. Enormous birch and oak-trees
towered on both sides of the narrow path, while lime-trees gave forth
the honeyed sweetness of their blossoms. Here and there a precipice
would yawn on one side of the pathway. No homes of any kind were to be
seen.

The afternoon was far advanced when they reached another valley which
was to form their headquarters for the summer. Several of the shepherds
who shared this section noted their arrival and sent a welcome to them
on their _boutchoums_, long pipes of cherry wood which can be heard for
a great distance. In the Middle Ages, Roumanians used the _boutchoums_
to proclaim war to the troops.

Nicolaia at once led Jonitza to a sort of cave formed of large, loose
stones. "This," he said, "is the store-house of six or eight of us who
herd in this vicinity."

The next morning the work began in earnest. Some of it was splendid
training. Each day Nicolaia and Jonitza had to creep along the crags
with the flocks. Sometimes the footing was very insecure, so it
was no wonder that at the end of the first day Jonitza was covered
with bruises from his many falls. "I'm as stiff as a board, too,"
he confided to Nicolaia, as they lay down near each other to sleep.
But, by the end of the week, the stiffness was entirely gone, and
Jonitza could manage to keep his footing on the rocks even better than
Nicolaia. By that time, too, he had learned the call that would make
the sheep clinging to the steep mountainsides stop eating, look up, and
then come scrambling to him.

The donkey had been let loose as soon as the valley was reached and got
into all kinds of scrapes from his dislike to being alone. Sometimes
when he found that he couldn't follow the sheep, he would stand on a
bowlder and bray loudly as if proclaiming to an unsympathetic world his
loneliness.

Sometimes the report would spread that wild animals had been seen
prowling near. This meant extra watchfulness on the part of the
shepherds. But whether there was reason for any especial alarm or not,
every night each shepherd wrapped himself in his sheepskin or woolen
mantle and lay down by his flock ready to spring up at the least sign
of danger.



CHAPTER XII

IN THE CARPATHIANS (_Continued_)


Although Jonitza and Nicolaia could not be constantly together, they
tried to share at least one meal every day. Once at such a time Jonitza
remarked: "How I wish I could get to the top of that mountain yonder.
See what a queer shape it is! It makes me think of the picture of a
peak called 'La Omu,' the man."

Nicolaia thought that a funny name. "How did it come to get it?" he
asked.

"Let me think," replied Jonitza. "Oh, yes, I remember now what was
written about it in my story book. It said that it had another name,
'Negoi,' but that most of the country people preferred 'La Omu' because
of its resemblance to a human figure. When one came near he could see
that this was caused by a big rock in the center of a mass of others.
According to tradition, a shepherd once lost his way there and began to
curse God for his misfortune. Suddenly as he was cursing, God turned
him into stone as a warning to others."

"Although that probably isn't 'La Omu,'" said Nicolaia, "I should like
to climb it nevertheless. Perhaps Vasili would keep an eye on our sheep
for a few hours if we asked him."

"Do you think so?" asked Jonitza eagerly. And he at once ran to a bluff
and shouted to Vasili, who was stationed nearer to them than any of the
other shepherds. Vasili called back good-naturedly, "Go on. I'll see
the sheep don't wander far." And the boys started.

It took them half an hour to reach the peak. Gradually, as they
ascended it, the pine and fir-trees dwindled into misshapen goblin-like
bushes, each of which seemed to be hiding behind one of the great
bowlders that were everywhere so plentiful.

At one point the boys were clambering up a steep rocky path when
suddenly Jonitza gave a shriek and at the same time jumped high into
the air. Nicolaia, who was a short distance behind, stopped so suddenly
that he almost lost his balance. There, stretched out between the two
boys, lay two long shiny snakes sunning themselves and apparently
paying no heed to what had happened.

Nicolaia recovered himself first. He grasped tight hold of his shepherd
staff and approached. "Pshaw!" he called disdainfully, to Jonitza on
the other side. "They're harmless." Then jumping without fear over
them, he ran to where his companion, panting hard, was leaning against
a bowlder.

[Illustration: "THERE ... LAY TWO LONG SHINY SNAKES"]

Seeing an open space near, the boys looked it over carefully and
sat down. "It was the suddenness of seeing the snakes that made me
jump," said Jonitza, apparently feeling that his natural action needed
explanation. At this Nicolaia chuckled and then began to lecture
Jonitza on the necessity of always keeping wide awake in the mountains
and never allowing himself to be surprised.

Jonitza did not relish this and interrupted his companion to ask
questions. "How is one to tell harmless snakes from others? Have you
ever seen snakes just born?"

At this last question, Nicolaia's eyes flashed. "How I wish I could
find a snake's nest!" he exclaimed. "Don't you know that precious
stones are made from snake saliva? If I found a snake nest, I'd not run
but kill the snakes, and then I'd be so rich I'd be able to buy a big
farm of my own."

An answering flash came into Jonitza's eyes. "Let's go hunt for one
now," he said, springing up. Nicolaia rose more slowly. "I'm willing,
but I warn you that we must be careful."

So with their long shepherd staves in their hands, and keeping watch
where they trod, they began a hunt among the bowlders.

How it might have ended no one can tell, for they had gone scarcely
twenty yards when they heard a loud cry from down below.

"It must be for us," said Nicolaia, and quite forgetful of snakes or
anything else he led the way back as fast as he was able.

When they reached the slopes on which their sheep were grazing, they
met a shout of laughter. "It was your donkey," Vasili explained. "He
tried, as usual, to follow the flock and this time slipped down between
two rocks and couldn't go forward or back. Didn't you hear him bray? I
didn't know what to do and so called for you. But in the meantime this
other Vasili here came bounding up from nowhere. And you ought to have
seen him manage! He tied the donkey's feet together with a thong and
lifted him out as easily as one would a baby."

"You know you helped me," said a new voice.

The boys looked up to see a stranger standing near. He was of medium
height but thickset and very hardy in appearance. Instead of a
sheepskin cap a broad-brimmed hat was set well back over a mass of
glossy black curls. His features were regular; his eyes were now
smiling but there were angry lines written long before around them. The
boys shook hands with him and thanked him. "It was nothing," he said.
"Aren't we brothers?"

"Where are you from?"

"I belong to the other side," the youth answered, and then added, "The
side that isn't free."

All knew at once that he referred to Transylvania, which, although a
part of Hungary, is largely inhabited by Roumanians.

"We intend to make it free," Nicolaia answered with feeling. The
Transylvanian smiled and shook his head. Then, without a word more, he
left them.

There was one other shepherd that they learned to know. He was the
oldest there and came from Jassy, once the capital of Moldavia, a city
so old that the Turks claim that it dates back to the time of Abraham.
The Roumanians, however, feel that they can do better than that. They
put its foundations to the time of their beloved Trajan!

This shepherd, of whom later they heard strange wild tales, kept much
to himself. Often, however, the monotonously melancholy notes of a
wooden flute on which he played would reach them. Sometimes, too,
especially at early dawn, they would hear him draw forth powerful notes
on the _boutchoum_, such as no other shepherd could equal.



CHAPTER XIII

LEAVING THE MOUNTAINS


Thus the summer slowly passed in healthy out-of-door life that began to
grow exceedingly monotonous at the end. It was lonely, too, for after
the boys became used to the work even the noon meals together became
rarer, and sometimes several days passed with no other communication
than a few calls to each other.

At last September came. This is the month when the herdsmen take their
sheep again to the valleys. The donkey was laden with cheeses of
sheep's milk, and the boys followed the procession back to the village
from which they had started. They found it delightful to be together
again, and somehow, as they talked it over, the summer experience that
had begun to be trying regained its charm.

They joked, they told folk tales, and Nicolaia even sang a ballad that
had long been a favorite with the Roumanians. It was very touching,
and, of course, had to do with a shepherd, of his love for his sheep
and his dogs and his longing to lie near them even in death.

Long before they reached the farm-house they had been seen by Katinka
who ran out to meet them.

Jonitza found some letters awaiting him. He picked out the daintiest,
knowing it to be from his mother, and, begging to be excused, tore it
open to read immediately.

It was from Sinaia, the fashionable mountain resort where "Carmen
Sylva," the late loved dowager Queen Elizabeth, had had her summer home.

"Your father," said the letter among other things, "has to make a
business trip among our Wallachian farmers. He intends to take you with
him and finally spend a day or two with me here. Later on, we shall
visit relatives for some time at the capital, Bukurest."

Two days later Mr. Popescu took his son away.

As Mr. Popescu's business was with the peasants, most of the trip
was made by carriage through the very rich agricultural sections of
Wallachia. Now they stopped at the farms of the wealthy, where the very
latest in farm machinery could be seen at work; then at some of the
hundreds of small farms where the peasants still harvested their grain
with the sickle, and threshed it with the flail. On the way they passed
orchards of damson plum, from which brandy is made, and vineyards with
their rich yield.

The weather favored them. Only once were they caught in a storm. The
sky directly above had been monotonously blue for several days when
clouds seemed suddenly to form in all directions. A wind arose that
soon changed into a tempest, raising enormous clouds of dust. Angry
lightning began to fly across the sky, while not only the thunder but
the storm itself threatened. Through the dust they could just make out
a tower which showed that they were near a village. The obedient horses
strained every sinew to reach it and did just manage to get under cover
at a rude inn when enormous hail stones began to fall.

It proved to be rather an interesting place where they had secured
shelter, for it was not only an inn but a general store where a little
of everything was kept for sale. As no especial room was assigned them,
Jonitza felt free to wander about the place. On a sort of screened
back porch he found a woman pickling whole heads of cabbage, adding
corn-meal to the brine to hasten fermentation. This, when stuffed with
chopped pork, onions and rice, forms one of the national dishes.

Mr. Popescu smiled at the supper that was placed before them an hour
later. There was, of course, _mamaliga_ and its string, with a big
pitcher of rich milk, then some salted cheese, raw onions, and some
sun-dried beef that had been seasoned with spices and garlic when
cooked. The platters, spoons and forks were of wood, the knives alone
being of steel.

Although the owner of the inn was evidently pleased at having so much
to place before his guests, he seemed to think that he could do still
better. "One of my pigs," he said, "is to be killed to-morrow. If you
will stay till then I can offer you something really fine."

Although that might not have been the reason, Mr. Popescu decided to
stay.

"Come," the landlord's wife said to Jonitza next morning as he sat on
the stoop in front of the inn. In answer to her mysterious beckoning,
Jonitza followed her to the rear. Here he found a group of men and boys
gathered around a big fire from which a very pleasant odor rose.

"What is it?" Jonitza inquired. The landlady laughed and then
whispered, "The pig has been killed and we are burning off its hair."

After the meat had been exposed to the heat for a sufficient length of
time, thin slices were cut off and handed to each person present. This
resulted in loud exclamations from some of the children whose fingers
were burnt and even louder smacking of lips as the delicious morsels
were tasted.

They left late that afternoon for the next village, overtaking on the
way a party of reapers with scythes over their shoulders. A young woman
crowned with wheaten ears led several others, all of whom chanted some
melancholy air about the end of the harvest.

Everywhere they went people sang, the number of folk songs about
soldier life being particularly noticeable. Many of these songs were
exceedingly touching; some, however, were wild in character. All were
full of a spirit of rare bravery and resignation to whatever fate had
in store.

At last among the grand forests near the Prahova River, the pretty
rustic houses of rural Roumania changed to Swiss looking cottages, and
then to fine brown and red-roofed villas, hotels and baths. Sinaia had
been reached.

A little apart from the villas stood the Royal Summer Palace, with its
tall roofs and glittering pinnacles.

During the trip they had changed vehicles and drivers many times,
and now a very old man acted as their coachman. His eyes sparkled as
he pointed out the Château. "I lived near here," he said, "when this
Château was built for King Carol and Queen Elizabeth, whom they tell
me is now generally called 'Carmen Sylva.' My daughter was better
acquainted with her than I. Might I tell you the story, sir? It was
not long after the Château was finished that the King and Queen drove
up to spend a few days here. They had splendid horses and came fast.
My little girl was playing by the roadside and somehow frightened the
horses for they leaped to one side. They were brought under control at
once, but the child had been more frightened than they and cried loudly.

"Her Majesty must have heard her for she ordered the coachman to stop.
When he had done so, she herself got out and went back to my little
one, whom she comforted in a few minutes. As she kissed her and put
some coins in her hands, she whispered, 'Be ready to pay me a visit
to-morrow morning. I'll come for you.'

"We did not think anything of this, but the next day, sure enough,
a carriage came to our little hut for Florica. You can imagine our
excitement until we had our little one again and heard from her the
whole story of her visit to Fairy Land, for that is what the visit to
the Château was to her.

"But I have another and better reason to bless her Gracious Majesty. My
brother, sir, was blind--couldn't see a thing, sir--and our Queen made
him happy, as she did others like him, in the Asylum for the Blind that
she founded in Bukurest.

"She was always doing good.

"She liked our peasant ways, sir, she did, and our dress. In the
Château she always wore the national costume and all her maids had to
do so. Deeper in the woods is a Forester's hut where they tell me she
wrote stories and songs like our own."

As the man chatted they approached a deep-roofed chalet from which the
sound of merry laughter and conversation was wafted down to them. Then
they stopped before it and the next moment Jonitza was in his mother's
arms.



CHAPTER XIV

THE CAPITAL OF ROUMANIA


Jonitza had not been a week in Bukurest when he began to wish himself
back in the country. At first there had been much to see, especially in
the fine shops on the beautiful street called Calea Vittoriei, which
extends from one end of the city to the other. On this street is also
the Royal Palace and most of the theaters.

Jonitza and his parents were staying with near relatives in one of
the many fine residential sections, where the big stone houses are
surrounded by beautiful gardens.

Although this section was no great distance from the business center,
they never walked to the latter but either drove or went in the big
touring car belonging to the family.

"People must be very happy in the 'City of Pleasure,'"--that is what
the word Bukurest means--Jonitza said to himself one day as he watched
the very lively crowds on the streets. He was standing at the time in
front of the splendid show windows of a jewelry store, waiting for
his mother who had gone inside. At first he had stared at the rich
gems through the glass but the interesting passing crowd had gradually
attracted him; the very fashionable ladies, some light, some dark,
talking so vivaciously, the priests with their long hair, and, most
of all, the numerous soldiers in the splendor and variety of their
uniforms.

"Jonitza," said his mother when she came out, "I am going to call on an
old-time friend, and as I know such visits bore you, I shall leave you
on the way to spend an hour at the National Museum. How will you like
that?"

"Very much, dear mother," Jonitza answered.

So the carriage took them to the big Museum building where Jonitza
alighted. Indoors he found much to interest him. He lingered before
the displays of magnificent royal jeweled collars and crowns, and the
specimens of Roumania's mineral wealth: gold, silver, copper, rock
salt, and others. There were drawings and paintings, too, to be looked
at. He stood long before one of the latter. It represented a Roumanian
boyard or nobleman of long ago, dressed in a long, loose, rich costume,
with several jeweled daggers in his embroidered belt. A crowd of
dependents surrounded him, some bowing low, some kissing his hand, some
trying to get him to listen to the tale that they had to tell.

Although Jonitza's mother was late in returning to the Museum, he had
still much to see when she did come. A richly dressed young woman, who
treated Jonitza like an old friend, was with her.

"It is still early," his mother remarked to his mystification. And
she gave some orders to the coachman who then drove them past the
"Institution of the Blind," the particular pride of Queen Elizabeth
(Carmen Sylva), past the University and schools of various kinds, past
a beautiful pure white marble statue of some _voivode_ or other, and on
to the extensive Garden of Cismegiu; then again to the Calea Vittoriei,
where the carriage stopped before the renowned restaurant of Capsa.

Here Jonitza's father, who evidently knew of their coming, was waiting
to escort them into a room with tiled glistening floor, lofty mirrors,
beautiful flowers, and exquisitely neat tables. The place was crowded
to overflowing, but above the hum of voices could be heard the
fascinating music of a Roumanian Gypsy band.

Hardly had they entered, than two fashionably dressed men joined their
party. After considerable banter, the conversation became so serious
that Jonitza did not understand all of it. Now and then he caught a
quotation that he had heard before, as, "Leave a Hungarian to guard
the thing that you value most," and "There is no fruit so bitter as
foreigners in the land."

Everything tasted very good, but Jonitza would have enjoyed it more had
some attention been paid to him. As it was, he was glad when the party
at last arose and while the rest of the company went to the theater, he
was sent in the carriage home alone.

At home, he found only servants and so went at once to the little room
that was his own during his stay at the capital.

Here he threw himself down for awhile in a big armchair and gave
himself up to thoughts that he had never had before, about Roumania's
past history, about the old-time ballads of _heiduks_ and chieftains
that he had heard in the mountains, and about what he had caught in
the conversation at the brilliant restaurant that night regarding
Roumania's future.

Even after he lay down on his bed he could not but wonder if Roumania
was yet to be a great nation, if Transylvania now belonging to Hungary,
if Bukovina now a part of Austria, and perhaps Bessarabia, though
claimed by Russia--all with a large Roumanian population, would not
be restored to her. Finally he fell into a restless sleep in which he
dreamed that he was already a man and fighting that those of his own
blood might be rescued from foreign governments who despised them and
tyrannized over them.



CHAPTER XV

THE NATIONAL DANCE


When Jonitza awoke he found black coffee and delicious white twists
awaiting him. He dressed quickly that he might be in time for the
hearty breakfast that follows. It was a holiday, and so later he had
a ride behind four horses abreast with his father, first along the
sluggish Dimbovitza River on which Bukurest is situated, then into
the hills to an old three-towered Cathedral, one of the very few
antiquities to be seen in Bukurest. From here the city looked very
attractive with its metal plated steeples and cupolas, its many squares
and tree-lined avenues.

Then the horses carried them still further away to a neighboring hamlet
with its pretty rustic vine-embowered houses, their dark roofs forming
verandas on which clay benches invited one to rest. Peasant women
drawing water from wells by the wayside greeted them; children tending
geese and pigs smiled at them, and a man building a wattled fence
invited them into his little country house all blue and white.

When they reached home and had had luncheon, Jonitza found that the
whole family but himself had been invited to some entertainment and
that he was to be left with Maritza and the servants.

He had begun to yawn and to wonder how he would spend the day, when
Maritza solved the problem for him.

"Your mother said that I might take you to see the _Hora_ danced," she
announced. The _Hora_ is the Roumanian national dance.

"Oh, good!" cried Jonitza, throwing a book that he was holding up to
the ceiling and catching it again.

Soon after, Maritza's brother came for his sister. He was a rather
tall, dark-eyed man and dressed in spotless white linen trousers with a
ruffle around the ankles and deep pointed pockets in front, embroidered
in red. To be sure to be on time they started at once, Maritza
laughingly repeating that they "must dance on Sunday to keep the creak
out of their bones on Monday."

A half hour's walk brought them to a modest section of Bukurest, where,
in a square opposite a tavern, a host of peasant men and women in their
gayest costumes, were already gathered. Knowing how eager Maritza was
to dance, Jonitza urged her to leave him on the lawn. "I shall be all
right here under the trees," he said.

When she consented, he threw himself down to watch. Soon gypsy
musicians seated themselves on a platform at one edge of the square
and began to play. At once men and maidens clasped hands and began a
swaying motion to words improvised by certain of the youths who were in
charge of the dance for the day.

Others joined; the ring grew gigantic and then suddenly broke into
two, each part with its set of leaders, while a shout of pleasurable
excitement rent the air.

Jonitza enjoyed it all for quite a while and then began to yawn.
As he turned to see if he could find anything else of interest his
glance fell on a boy seated some distance away under a huge lime-tree.
Something about this boy made Jonitza sit upright. Suddenly he leaped
to his feet, ran wildly forward, and put his hands over the other boy's
eyes.

"Guess," he said in a muffled voice.

In answer the other boy jumped up, over-throwing Jonitza as he did so.
It was Nicolaia.

For a moment both boys showed considerable emotion. "When did you come?
Are you going to stay in Bukurest? Where do you live?" were some of the
questions that Jonitza hurled at his companion.

Nicolaia did his best to answer. "I came yesterday," he said, "to begin
my apprenticeship with my uncle. Since to-day is Friday and a holiday,
Uncle says that I am not to begin work till Monday. He wants me to see
a little of the city first."

"Hurrah!" shouted Jonitza, throwing up his cap. "Where are you going
to-morrow?"

"In the morning I'm going to go to market with Auntie, so as to know
how to buy. I'm to live with them and shall have to do all sorts of odd
jobs at times."

Jonitza grew thoughtful. "I'll try to see you there," he said after a
pause. "Mother won't let me go alone anywhere here. I'm such a lovely
child"--here he grinned--"she thinks some one might steal me. But
perhaps I can go with one of the house servants or with Maritza."

"I'll look for you," said Nicolaia solemnly. Then he added: "I was
so tired of watching the old dance that I was amusing myself playing
_Arshitza_." Here he stooped to pick up a sheep bone shaped like the
figure eight, and some bits of lead.

"What fun we used to have playing that at your house," said Jonitza
with something like a sigh. "Let's play it now." Nicolaia nodded and
they settled down for a quiet time by themselves, each trying in turn
to snap as many of the lead pieces as possible into the rings.

Later they sharpened a few sticks that they found and played another
game called _Tzurka_, not unlike our game of _Cat_. Then they lay down
side by side on the grass and talked.

All this time the music, singing, and dancing went on, as if none
of those taking part in it knew what it was to get tired. It was
only with the setting of the sun that it came to a stop. Neither of
the boys would have known it, however, so absorbed were they in a
deep discussion, had not Maritza found them. As she shook hands with
Nicolaia and looked at Jonitza's animated face she roguishly asked,
"Did you like the dance?"

"Why--yes--" responded Jonitza quite unconscious of the twinkle in
her eyes. "It was splendid, wasn't it, Nicolaia? I wish it could have
lasted longer!"



CHAPTER XVI

AT THE MARKET


It was not until he was alone with his mother that night that Jonitza
mentioned his desire to see Nicolaia at the market on the morrow. His
mother put her arms around him. "It is a long time since I've gone to
market. Suppose I go to-morrow morning and take you with me?"

"How good a mother is," Jonitza thought as he went to bed, "and how
well she understands a boy."

[Illustration: "'WILL YOU NOT LET ME TAKE YOU HOME IN THE CAR?'"]

It was delightfully cool next morning when a touring car took them to
what seemed a village of booths or stalls, presided over by gypsies,
peasants and Jews.

Nicolaia and his aunt were evidently looking out for them for they
came up as the carriage stopped. Mrs. Popescu gave Nicolaia a hearty
handshake and then turning to his aunt asked for permission to keep the
boy with them for the rest of the day. The aunt pointed to a basket
over her arm, already filled with the purchases that she had wished
Nicolaia to help her make, and cheerfully gave her consent. Then Mrs.
Popescu made a gracious offer. "While the boys are enjoying the market
together, will you not let me take you home in the car?"

Nicolaia's aunt was evidently surprised and somewhat embarrassed, but
when she saw that the offer was sincerely meant, climbed in with her
basket, remarking that it was the first time that she had ever been in
"one of those things."

As the car drove off, Jonitza grabbed Nicolaia's hand and squeezing it,
exclaimed: "Isn't this fine!"

"Bully!" returned Nicolaia. "Let's go from one end of the market to the
other."

To show how entirely he intended agreeing with anything that his
companion might suggest, Jonitza, laughing, took hold of Nicolaia's
arm and pulled him rapidly forward. Both came to a standstill where a
heavily bearded man was measuring out rose leaves to be boiled into
jam. Near him was a stall with the bright pottery made by the peasants,
while across the lane an old woman offered amulets of various kinds for
sale. "Buy one of these," she urged the boys as their curious glances
fell on her wares. "If not for yourselves, my dears, then for your
mothers or sisters; what I have will surely protect them from evil."

The boys paid little attention to her words, but when she laid an arm
on Nicolaia he nudged Jonitza with his elbow, said a few words in a
low voice and both suddenly darted off, almost knocking down the boys
and girls who were going in an opposite direction, carefully balancing
stone jars or baskets laden with fruit or vegetables on their heads.
They stopped again where food was offered for sale. There were melons
and pumpkins, berries, dried fish, caviar, poultry, and bread booths,
some of them with women in charge who were knitting or spinning, while
waiting for customers.

"Look who is behind me," Nicolaia called out suddenly. Jonitza turned
hastily and saw a knife-grinder who, having caught the remark, made a
grimace at the boys. They followed him to a booth, and after watching
him for a few minutes, made their way to a place near by where all
kinds of birds were for sale. "I must have one," said Jonitza, but when
Nicolaia could not help him decide whether it should be a parrot or a
canary, he decided to postpone the purchase until another day.

This bird stall was not far from another entrance than the one by which
they had come. From it they could see numerous carts approaching, some
of them drawn by buffaloes, with peasants seated on the front rails.

As the boys eagerly gazed around for anything out of the ordinary, the
chant of a minstrel reached them. With difficulty they forced their way
into a crowd gathered around an old, half-blind man who seemed to be
improvising some fascinating tale of war time deeds accompanying the
half-chanted words to a twanging on a flute-like instrument called a
_cobza_. Every once in a while as he stopped the gathered people would
shout their applause.

It was not until he grew tired and signified a need for rest that the
boys left. Right around the corner they came upon an equal attraction.
It was a sort of "Punch and Judy" show to see which a trifling fee was
demanded. "We mustn't miss this," Jonitza insisted and led the way into
a structure which was crowded with children.

As they came out, a bell tolled the hour. The boys stopped to count the
strokes. As they ceased, Nicolaia's face grew serious. It was half an
hour past the time when they were to meet Mrs. Popescu. What would she
say?

But, when they found her, she did not give them a chance even to
offer an excuse. "I know you're late and deserve a scolding, but how
dare I scold you when I was ten minutes late myself? I do believe in
punctuality, however, for sometimes time is very precious, and I'm
going to try not to ever have this happen again. What about yourselves?"

"Oh, we'll try to keep track of time hereafter, dear mother," Jonitza
answered both for himself and his friend, at the same time gratefully,
pressing one of her hands under the laprobe.



CHAPTER XVII

GOOD-BY


Winter had fully set in when Jonitza and his parents returned to their
home city of Galatz. It was intensely cold, for the winds from Russia's
vast steppes meet no hindrance in striking the great plains along the
lower part of the Danube River. The snow lay heavy on roads and houses,
while sprays of icicles hung low from the trees and bushes and even
from the noses of toiling cattle. The Danube itself was frozen and
would remain so for at least three months. Even the Black Sea further
away was ice covered for several miles' distance from shore.

A warm welcome, however, awaited them indoors. The tall brick stove
threw out great heat, and the secure double windows treated the
powerful wind with scorn.

Friends added the warmth of welcome, and Jonitza was surprised to find
how many boys there were of his own age right in his neighborhood. He
stared at them as if he had never seen them before and they stared
in equal surprise at him. "The fact is," Mr. Popescu confided to the
Doctor, "we have brought back a new son."

There was one very bright boy in particular to whom Jonitza was
attracted largely because of some physical resemblance to Nicolaia,
and this boy's opinion came to have quite an influence over him. For
instance when the question of resuming his studies under his former
tutor came up, Jonitza objected. "I want to go to the same school as
Dimitri," he said. Dimitri was the name of his new friend. "There's a
teacher there that knows all sorts of things. Besides, I want to study
and work with other boys. How can I tell whether I'm stupid or dull
unless I do?"

[Illustration: "SOMETHING CAREFULLY COVERED WITH A SHEET WAS CARRIED
MYSTERIOUSLY INTO JONITZA'S ROOM"]

"I'm afraid I am bringing up a democrat!" his father exclaimed half
jokingly when he had given his consent. He had reason to think so in
earnest before the winter was over for his son took part in all kinds
of sports and picked his associates without regard to the class to
which they belonged. Some of Mrs. Popescu's relatives and friends did
not hesitate to voice their disapproval. Once they made Mr. Popescu
think that he must interfere, but fortunately before he did he ran
across his friend the Doctor.

"Your advice has done wonders for our boy," he said to him, "but--" and
in a lowered tone he repeated some of the criticisms.

The Doctor gave his cheery laugh. "Let them criticize," he said. "Be
thankful that your son acts as a normal boy should act; that he chooses
his associates for what they are worth, not for what they can spend.
Take my word for it," he added impressively, "class distinctions that
have counted so much with some of us, are going to be abolished in our
country as well as in many another, and that soon, even if it takes the
great war to abolish them."

Jonitza had made up his mind that Nicolaia must spend the Christmas
holidays with them, and Mrs. Popescu was anxious to gratify this wish.
But at first it seemed that this would be impossible. It was fortunate
perhaps that Mr. Popescu had a business trip to make to Bukurest and so
could use a little of his personal influence. That this had some weight
was shown when he returned on December 22 accompanied by Nicolaia.

Jonitza had given up all hopes of having his friend with him and so was
doubly pleased. He resolved to do everything he could to make the time
enjoyable for him, and begged Dimitri's interest and assistance.

"Will your parents let you join me in carol singing?" was Dimitri's
first question.

"Mother will, if Nicolaia would like it," replied Jonitza with
confidence.

"Then," said Dimitri, "I'll come to your house this afternoon and we'll
plan things."

When Dimitri came he was told that Mrs. Popescu had given her consent
and the boys retired to a shed to work secretly at the preparations.
They were evidently quite elaborate, for Jonitza visited the house for
supplies several times. By supper time something carefully covered with
a sheet was carried mysteriously into Jonitza's room where a hiding
place was found for it.

On Christmas Eve Dimitri was invited over for supper. Maritza herself
prepared a special dish called _turte_ for the occasion. This consisted
of thin dry wafers of dough covered with honey.

After the meal the boys hurried to Jonitza's room. When they came out
it was hard to recognize them. Each had on a mask, a long gown, and a
high hat of colored paper.

Nicolaia held a wooden star adorned with little bells. The center of
this star was a representation of the manger, and was illuminated from
behind.

They took their stand in the hallway where they sang Christmas carols,
some of which ended by wishing much prosperity to the household,

    "For many years,
     For many years."

Then Dimitri led the way to other homes, where he knew they would be
welcomed.

Before the Christmas festivities came to an end, Jonitza and Dimitri
planned something far more elaborate. It was to act out a peculiar
traditional drama for some of the poorest children of the town. Mrs.
Popescu lent her assistance and it turned out a great success.

The name of the drama was _Irozi_, showing that it had something to
do with the time of Herod. There were seven boys besides Jonitza,
Nicolaia and Dimitri who took part in it. The principal characters were
a grumbling Herod, some Roman officers, and three Magi in Oriental
costumes, a child, a clown, and an old man.

The plot is quite simple. A Roman officer brings news to Herod (who
was impersonated by Jonitza), that three men have been caught going
to Bethlehem to adore the new-born Christ. Entering, they hold a long
dialogue with Herod, who at last orders them to be cast into prison.
They, however, implore God to punish their persecutor. As they do so,
strange noises are heard. These frighten Herod who begs forgiveness and
lets the men go free.

Later a child comes in and prophesies the future of the Messiah. As the
child proceeds, Herod's rage increases until he strikes the child dead.
At this all present unite in reproaches until Herod sinks to his knees
and implores forgiveness.

The success of the play was largely due to two characters whose antics
pleased the little ones. One of these was the clown (Nicolaia) and the
other was an old man who was in everybody's way (Dimitri). This latter
had a mask with a long beard on his face, a hunched back, and wore
heavy boots and a sheepskin mantle with the wool on the outside.

When the much applauded play came to an end, refreshments were passed
around and afterwards the children sent home with their hands filled
with gifts of various kinds.

In such gayeties the holidays soon passed. On the very last day of the
year Nicolaia left for home, and as Jonitza and Dimitri saw him to the
train they anticipated the New Year by throwing grains of corn at him
and repeating the old time Roumanian greeting:

"May you live and flourish like the trees of the garden and be blessed
like them with all things plentiful."


THE END



Selections from The Page Company's Books for Young People



THE BLUE BONNET SERIES

  _Each large 12mo, cloth decorative, illustrated, per volume_   $1.50


=A TEXAS BLUE BONNET=

By CAROLINE E. JACOBS.

"The book's heroine, Blue Bonnet, has the very finest kind of
wholesome, honest, lively girlishness."--_Chicago Inter-Ocean._


=BLUE BONNET'S RANCH PARTY=

By CAROLINE E. JACOBS AND EDYTH ELLERBECK READ.

"A healthy, natural atmosphere breathes from every chapter."--_Boston
Transcript._


=BLUE BONNET IN BOSTON=; OR, BOARDING-SCHOOL DAYS AT MISS NORTH'S.

By CAROLINE E. JACOBS AND LELA HORN RICHARDS.

"It is bound to become popular because of its wholesomeness and its
many human touches."--_Boston Globe._


=BLUE BONNET KEEPS HOUSE=; OR, THE NEW HOME IN THE EAST.

By CAROLINE E. JACOBS AND LELA HORN RICHARDS.

"It cannot fail to prove fascinating to girls in their teens."--_New
York Sun._


=BLUE BONNET--DÉBUTANTE=

By LELA HORN RICHARDS.

An interesting picture of the unfolding of life for Blue Bonnet.



THE YOUNG PIONEER SERIES

By HARRISON ADAMS

    _Each 12mo, cloth decorative, illustrated, per volume_      $1.25


=THE PIONEER BOYS OF THE OHIO=; OR, CLEARING THE WILDERNESS.

"Such books as this are an admirable means of stimulating among the
young Americans of to-day interest in the story of their pioneer
ancestors and the early days of the Republic."--_Boston Globe._


=THE PIONEER BOYS ON THE GREAT LAKES=; OR, ON THE TRAIL OF THE IROQUOIS.

"The recital of the daring deeds of the frontier is not only
interesting but instructive as well and shows the sterling
type of character which these days of self-reliance and trial
produced."--_American Tourist, Chicago._


=THE PIONEER BOYS OF THE MISSISSIPPI=; OR, THE HOMESTEAD IN THE
WILDERNESS.

"The story is told with spirit, and is full of adventure."--_New York
Sun._


=THE PIONEER BOYS OF THE MISSOURI=; OR, IN THE COUNTRY OF THE SIOUX.

"Vivid in style, vigorous in movement, full of dramatic situations,
true to historic perspective, this story is a capital one for
boys."--_Watchman Examiner, New York City._


=THE PIONEER BOYS OF THE YELLOWSTONE=; OR, LOST IN THE LAND OF WONDERS.

"There is plenty of lively adventure and action and the story is well
told."--_Duluth Herald, Duluth, Minn._


=THE PIONEER BOYS OF THE COLUMBIA=; OR, IN THE WILDERNESS OF THE GREAT
NORTHWEST.

"The story is full of spirited action and contains much valuable
historical information."--_Boston Herald._



THE HADLEY HALL SERIES

By LOUISE M. BREITENBACH

  _Each large 12mo, cloth decorative, illustrated, per volume_   $1.50


=ALMA AT HADLEY HALL=

"The author is to be congratulated on having written such an appealing
book for girls."--_Detroit Free Press._


=ALMA'S SOPHOMORE YEAR=

"It cannot fail to appeal to the lovers of good things in girls'
books."--_Boston Herald._


=ALMA'S JUNIOR YEAR=

"The diverse characters in the boarding-school are strongly drawn,
the incidents are well developed and the action is never dull."--_The
Boston Herald._


=ALMA'S SENIOR YEAR=

"Incident abounds in all of Miss Breitenbach's stories and a healthy,
natural atmosphere breathes from every chapter."--_Boston Transcript._



THE GIRLS OF FRIENDLY TERRACE SERIES

By HARRIET LUMMIS SMITH

  _Each large 12mo, cloth decorative, illustrated, per volume_    $1.50


=THE GIRLS OF FRIENDLY TERRACE=

"A book sure to please girl readers, for the author seems to understand
perfectly the girl character."--_Boston Globe._


=PEGGY RAYMOND'S VACATION=

"It is a wholesome, hearty story."--_Utica Observer._


=PEGGY RAYMOND'S SCHOOL DAYS=

The book is delightfully written, and contains lots of exciting
incidents.



FAMOUS LEADERS SERIES

By CHARLES H. L. JOHNSTON

  _Each large 12mo, cloth decorative, illustrated, per volume_  $1.50


=FAMOUS CAVALRY LEADERS=

"More of such books should be written, books that acquaint young
readers with historical personages in a pleasant, informal way."--_New
York Sun._

"It is a book that will stir the heart of every boy and will prove
interesting as well to the adults."--_Lawrence Daily World._


=FAMOUS INDIAN CHIEFS=

"Mr. Johnston has done faithful work in this volume, and his relation
of battles, sieges and struggles of these famous Indians with the
whites for the possession of America is a worthy addition to United
States History."--_New York Marine Journal._


=FAMOUS SCOUTS=

"It is the kind of a book that will have a great fascination for boys
and young men, and while it entertains them it will also present
valuable information in regard to those who have left their impress
upon the history of the country."--_The New London Day._


=FAMOUS PRIVATEERSMEN AND ADVENTURERS OF THE SEA=

"The tales are more than merely interesting; they are entrancing,
stirring the blood with thrilling force and bringing new zest to the
never-ending interest in the dramas of the sea."--_The Pittsburgh Post._


=FAMOUS FRONTIERSMEN AND HEROES OF THE BORDER=

This book is devoted to a description of the adventurous lives and
stirring experiences of many pioneer heroes who were prominently
identified with the opening of the Great West.

"The accounts are not only authentic, but distinctly readable,
making a book of wide appeal to all who love the history of actual
adventure."--_Cleveland Leader._



HILDEGARDE-MARGARET SERIES

By LAURA E. RICHARDS

Eleven Volumes


The Hildegarde-Margaret Series, beginning with "Queen Hildegarde" and
ending with "The Merryweathers," make one of the best and most popular
series of books for girls ever written.

  _Each large 12mo, cloth decorative, illustrated, per volume_   $1.25
  _The eleven volumes boxed as a set_                           $13.75

LIST OF TITLES

    =QUEEN HILDEGARDE=
    =HILDEGARDE'S HOLIDAY=
    =HILDEGARDE'S HOME=
    =HILDEGARDE'S NEIGHBORS=
    =HILDEGARDE'S HARVEST=
    =THREE MARGARETS=
    =MARGARET MONTFORT=
    =PEGGY=
    =RITA=
    =FERNLEY HOUSE=
    =THE MERRYWEATHERS=



THE CAPTAIN JANUARY SERIES

By LAURA E. RICHARDS

    _Each 12mo, cloth decorative, illustrated, per volume_   50 cents


=CAPTAIN JANUARY=

A charming idyl of New England coast life, whose success has been very
remarkable.

    SAME. _Illustrated Holiday Edition_                   $1.25
    SAME, FRENCH TEXT. _Illustrated Holiday Edition_      $1.25


=MELODY=: THE STORY OF A CHILD.

    SAME. _Illustrated Holiday Edition_      $1.25


=MARIE=

A companion to "Melody" and "Captain January."


=ROSIN THE BEAU=

A sequel to "Melody" and "Marie."


=SNOW-WHITE=; OR, THE HOUSE IN THE WOOD.


=JIM OF HELLAS=; OR, IN DURANCE VILE, and a companion story, BETHESDA
POOL.


=NARCISSA=

And a companion story, IN VERONA, being two delightful short stories of
New England life.


"=SOME SAY="

And a companion story, NEIGHBORS IN CYRUS.


=NAUTILUS=

"'Nautilus' is by far the best product of the author's powers, and is
certain to achieve the wide success it so richly merits."


=ISLA HERON=

This interesting story is written in the author's usual charming manner.


=THE LITTLE MASTER=

"A well told, interesting tale of a high character."--_California
Gateway Gazette._



DELIGHTFUL BOOKS FOR LITTLE FOLKS

By LAURA E. RICHARDS


=THREE MINUTE STORIES=

    Cloth decorative, 12mo, with eight plates in full color
      and many text illustrations by Josephine Bruce.
                                      _Net_ $1.25; carriage paid $1.40

"Little ones will understand and delight in the stories and
poems."--_Indianapolis News._


=FIVE MINUTE STORIES=

    Cloth decorative, square 12mo, illustrated      $1.25

A charming collection of short stories and clever poems for children.


=MORE FIVE MINUTE STORIES=

    Cloth decorative, square 12mo, illustrated      $1.25

A noteworthy collection of short stories and poems for children, which
will prove as popular with mothers as with boys and girls.


=FIVE MICE IN A MOUSE TRAP=

    Cloth decorative, square 12mo, illustrated      $1.25

The story of their lives and other wonderful things related by the Man
in the Moon, done in the vernacular from the lunacular form by Laura E.
Richards.


=WHEN I WAS YOUR AGE=

    Cloth, 8vo, illustrated      $1.25

The title most happily introduces the reader to the charming home life
of Doctor Howe and Mrs. Julia Ward Howe, during the childhood of the
author.


=A HAPPY LITTLE TIME=

    Cloth, 8vo, illustrated      $1.25

Little Betty and the happy time she had will appeal strongly to mothers
as well as to the little ones who will have this story read to them,
and appeal all the more on account of its being such a "real" story.



THE BOYS' STORY OF THE RAILROAD SERIES

By BURTON E. STEVENSON

  _Each large 12mo, cloth decorative, illustrated, per volume_  $1.50


=THE YOUNG SECTION-HAND=; OR, THE ADVENTURES OF ALLAN WEST.

"A thrilling story, well told, clean and bright. The whole range
of section railroading is covered in the story, and it contains
information as well as interest."--_Chicago Post._


=THE YOUNG TRAIN DISPATCHER=

"A vivacious account of the varied and often hazardous nature of
railroad life, full of incident and adventure, in which the author has
woven admirable advice about honesty, manliness, self-culture, good
reading, and the secrets of success."--_Congregationalist._


=THE YOUNG TRAIN MASTER=

"It is a book that can be unreservedly commended to anyone who loves a
good, wholesome, thrilling, informing yarn."--_Passaic News._


=THE YOUNG APPRENTICE=; OR, ALLAN WEST'S CHUM.

"The story is intensely interesting, and one gains an intimate
knowledge of the methods and works in the great car shops not easily
gained elsewhere."--_Baltimore Sun._

"It appeals to every boy of enterprising spirit, and at the same
time teaches him some valuable lessons in honor, pluck, and
perseverance."--_Cleveland Plain Dealer._

"The lessons that the books teach in development of uprightness,
honesty and true manly character are sure to appeal to the
reader."--_The American Boy._



    THE LITTLE COLONEL BOOKS
          (Trade Mark)

By ANNIE FELLOWS JOHNSTON

    _Each large 12mo, cloth, illustrated, per volume_      $1.50


    =THE LITTLE COLONEL STORIES=
          (Trade Mark)

Being three "Little Colonel" stories in the Cosy Corner Series, "The
Little Colonel," "Two Little Knights of Kentucky," and "The Giant
Scissors," in a single volume.

    =THE LITTLE COLONEL'S HOUSE PARTY=
          (Trade Mark)

    =THE LITTLE COLONEL'S HOLIDAYS=
          (Trade Mark)

    =THE LITTLE COLONEL'S HERO=
          (Trade Mark)

    =THE LITTLE COLONEL AT BOARDING-SCHOOL=
          (Trade Mark)

    =THE LITTLE COLONEL IN ARIZONA=
          (Trade Mark)

    =THE LITTLE COLONEL'S CHRISTMAS VACATION=
          (Trade Mark)

    =THE LITTLE COLONEL, MAID OF HONOR=
          (Trade Mark)

    =THE LITTLE COLONEL'S KNIGHT COMES RIDING=
          (Trade Mark)

    =MARY WARE: THE LITTLE COLONEL'S CHUM=
          (Trade Mark)

=MARY WARE IN TEXAS=

=MARY WARE'S PROMISED LAND=

_These twelve volumes, boxed as a set_, $18.00.



SPECIAL HOLIDAY EDITIONS

    _Each small quarto, cloth decorative, per volume_      $1.25

New plates, handsomely illustrated with eight full-page drawings in
color, and many marginal sketches.


    =THE LITTLE COLONEL=
          (Trade Mark)

=TWO LITTLE KNIGHTS OF KENTUCKY=

=THE GIANT SCISSORS=

=BIG BROTHER=



THE JOHNSTON JEWEL SERIES

    _Each small 16mo, cloth decorative, with frontispiece
       and decorative text borders, per volume._         _Net_ $0.50


=IN THE DESERT OF WAITING=: THE LEGEND OF CAMELBACK MOUNTAIN.

=THE THREE WEAVERS=: A FAIRY TALE FOR FATHERS AND MOTHERS AS WELL AS
FOR THEIR DAUGHTERS.

=KEEPING TRYST=: A TALE OF KING ARTHUR'S TIME.

=THE LEGEND OF THE BLEEDING HEART=

=THE RESCUE OF PRINCESS WINSOME=: A FAIRY PLAY FOR OLD AND YOUNG.

=THE JESTER'S SWORD=



=THE LITTLE COLONEL'S GOOD TIMES BOOK=


    Uniform in size with the Little Colonel Series      $1.50
    Bound in white kid (morocco) and gold.         _Net_ 3.00

Cover design and decorations by Peter Verberg.

"A mighty attractive volume in which the owner may record the good
times she has on decorated pages, and under the directions as it were
of Annie Fellows Johnston."--_Buffalo Express._


=THE LITTLE COLONEL DOLL BOOK--First Series=

    Quarto, boards, printed in colors      $1.50

A series of "Little Colonel" dolls. Each has several changes of
costume, so they can be appropriately clad for the rehearsal of any
scene or incident in the series.


=THE LITTLE COLONEL DOLL BOOK--Second Series=

    Quarto, boards, printed in colors      $1.50

An artistic series of paper dolls, including not only lovable Mary
Ware, the Little Colonel's chum, but many another of the much loved
characters which appear in the last three volumes of the famous "Little
Colonel Series."


=ASA HOLMES=

By ANNIE FELLOWS JOHNSTON.

With a frontispiece by Ernest Fosbery.

    16mo, cloth decorative, gilt top      $1.00

"'Asa Holmes' is the most delightful, most sympathetic and wholesome
book that has been published in a long while."--_Boston Times._


=TRAVELERS FIVE: ALONG LIFE'S HIGHWAY=

By ANNIE FELLOWS JOHNSTON.

With an introduction by Bliss Carman, and a frontispiece by E. H.
Garrett.

    12mo, cloth decorative      $1.25

"Mrs. Johnston broadens her reputation with this book so rich in the
significance of common things."--_Boston Advertiser._


=JOEL: A BOY OF GALILEE=

By ANNIE FELLOWS JOHNSTON.

    12mo, cloth decorative, illustrated      $1.50

"The book is a very clever handling of the greatest event in the
history of the world."--_Rochester, N. Y., Herald._



THE BOYS' STORY OF THE ARMY SERIES

By FLORENCE KIMBALL RUSSEL


=BORN TO THE BLUE=

    12mo, cloth decorative, illustrated      $1.25

"The story deserves warm commendation and genuine popularity."--_Army
and Navy Register._


=IN WEST POINT GRAY=

    12mo, cloth decorative, illustrated      $1.50

"One of the best books that deals with West Point."--_New York Sun._


=FROM CHEVRONS TO SHOULDER-STRAPS=

    12mo, cloth decorative, illustrated      $1.50

"The life of a cadet at West Point is portrayed very
realistically."--_The Hartford Post, Hartford, Conn._



DOCTOR'S LITTLE GIRL SERIES

By MARION AMES TAGGART

    _Each large 12mo, cloth, illustrated, per volume_,      $1.50


=THE DOCTOR'S LITTLE GIRL=

"A charming story of the ups and downs of the life of a dear little
maid."--_The Churchman._


=SWEET NANCY=: THE FURTHER ADVENTURES OF THE DOCTOR'S LITTLE GIRL.

"Just the sort of book to amuse, while its influence cannot but be
elevating."--_New York Sun._


=NANCY, THE DOCTOR'S LITTLE PARTNER=

"The story is sweet and fascinating, such as many girls of wholesome
tastes will enjoy."--_Springfield Union._


=NANCY PORTER'S OPPORTUNITY=

"Nancy shows throughout that she is a splendid young woman, with plenty
of pluck."--_Boston Globe._


=NANCY AND THE COGGS TWINS=

"The story is refreshing."--_New York Sun._



WORKS OF EVALEEN STEIN


=THE CHRISTMAS PORRINGER=

    12mo, cloth decorative, illustrated by Adelaide Everhart  $1.25

This story happened many hundreds of years ago in the quaint Flemish
city of Bruges and concerns a little girl named Karen, who worked at
lace-making with her aged grandmother.


=GABRIEL AND THE HOUR BOOK=

    Small quarto, cloth decorative, illustrated and
       decorated in colors by Adelaide Everhart       $1.25

"No works in juvenile fiction contain so many of the elements that
stir the hearts of children and grown-ups as well as do the stories so
admirably told by this author."--_Louisville Daily Courier._


=A LITTLE SHEPHERD OF PROVENCE=

    12mo, cloth decorative, illustrated by Diantha H. Marlowe  $1.25

"The story should be one of the influences in the life of every child
to whom good stories can be made to appeal."--_Public Ledger._


=THE LITTLE COUNT OF NORMANDY=

    12mo, cloth decorative, illustrated by John Goss      $1.25

"This touching and pleasing story is told with a wealth of interest
coupled with enlivening descriptions of the country where its scenes
are laid and of the people thereof."--_Wilmington Every Evening._



=ELEANOR OF THE HOUSEBOAT=

By LOUISE M. BREITENBACH.

    12mo, cloth decorative, illustrated      $1.50

An unusually interesting story of how Eleanor Tracy spent a wonderful
summer on a houseboat.



HISTORICAL BOOKS


=THE BOYS OF '61=; OR, FOUR YEARS OF FIGHTING.

By CHARLES CARLETON COFFIN.

    Standard Edition. An entirely new edition, cloth
        decorative, 8vo, with nearly two hundred illustrations   $2.00
    Popular Edition. Cloth decorative, 12mo, with eight
        illustrations                                            $1.00

A record of personal observation with the Army and Navy, from the
Battle of Bull Run to the fall of Richmond.


=THE BOYS OF 1812=; AND OTHER NAVAL HEROES.

By JAMES RUSSELL SOLEY.

    Cloth decorative, 8vo, illustrated      $2.00

"The book is full of stirring incidents and adventures."--_Boston
Herald._


=THE SAILOR BOYS OF '61=

By JAMES RUSSELL SOLEY.

    Cloth decorative, 8vo, illustrated      $2.00

"It is written with an enthusiasm that never allows the interest to
slacken."--_The Call, Newark, N. J._


=BOYS OF FORT SCHUYLER=

By JAMES OTIS.

    Cloth decorative, square 12mo, illustrated      $1.25

"It is unquestionably one of the best historical Indian stories ever
written."--_Boston Herald._


FAMOUS WAR STORIES

By CHARLES CARLETON COFFIN

    _Each cloth decorative, 12mo, illustrated, per vol._      $1.25


=WINNING HIS WAY=

A story of a young soldier in the Civil War.


=MY DAYS AND NIGHTS ON THE BATTLEFIELD=

A story of the Battle of Bull Run and other battles in Kentucky,
Tennessee, and on the Mississippi.


=FOLLOWING THE FLAG=

A story of the Army of the Potomac in the Civil War.



STORIES OF NEWSBOY LIFE

By JAMES OTIS

    _Each 12mo, cloth decorative, illustrated, per volume_     $1.25


=JENNY WREN'S BOARDING HOUSE=

"Distinctively a story of newsboy life in New York, and Mr. Otis very
quickly finds his way to the sensitive and loving heart that beats
under the ragged and torn coat of the little boy who is untiring in his
efforts to sell his papers and thereby earn a mere pittance to sustain
life."--_Boston Herald._


=TEDDY AND CARROTS=; OR, TWO MERCHANTS OF NEWSPAPER ROW.

His newsboys are real and wide-awake, and his story abounds with many
exciting scenes and graphic incidents.


=THE BOYS' REVOLT=

A story of the street arabs of New York.

"This is the story of a strike of bootblack boys in the city of New
York and it contains stirring scenes and incidents."--_The Christian
Register._


=JERRY'S FAMILY=

The story of a street waif of New York.

It is written in the author's best vein, the scene being one in which
he has won many brilliant successes, _i.e._, picturing life among the
street arabs of New York.


=THE PRINCESS AND JOE POTTER=

"The secret of the author's success lies in his wonderful sympathy with
the aspirations of child-life, his truthful delineation of life among
the children who act as his object lessons."--_New York Sun._


=LARRY HUDSON'S AMBITION=

"The book is written with brisk and deft cleverness."--_New York Sun._

"An attractive story, with a healthy outdoor atmosphere."--_New York
Commercial Advertiser._



THE SANDMAN SERIES

By WILLIAM J. HOPKINS

  _Each large 12mo, cloth decorative, illustrated, per volume_  $1.50


=THE SANDMAN=: HIS FARM STORIES.

"Mothers and fathers and kind elder sisters who take the little
ones to bed and rack their brains for stories will find this book a
treasure."--_Cleveland Leader._


=THE SANDMAN=: MORE FARM STORIES.

"Children will call for these stories over and over again."--_Chicago
Evening Post._


=THE SANDMAN=: HIS SHIP STORIES.

"Little ones will understand and delight in the stories and their
parents will read between the lines and recognize the poetic and
artistic work of the author."--_Indianapolis News._


=THE SANDMAN=: HIS SEA STORIES.

"Once upon a time there was a man who knew little children and the kind
of stories they liked, so he wrote four books of Sandman's stories, all
about the farm or the sea, and the brig _Industry_, and this book is
one of them."--_Canadian Congregationalist._


=THE SANDMAN=: HIS ANIMAL STORIES.

By HARRY W. FREES.

"The Sandman is a wonderful fellow. First, he told farm stories, then
ship stories, then sea stories. And now he tells about the kittens and
puppies and the fun they had in Kittycat Town, which is somewhere in
Animal Land."--_Pittsburgh Chronicle Telegraph._


=THE SANDMAN=: HIS SONGS AND RHYMES.

By JENNY WALLIS.

A choice collection of the best songs and rhymes that the best writers
of many lands and of past decades have produced, attractively arranged
by Jenny Wallis.



    THE LITTLE COUSIN SERIES
          (TRADE MARK)

Each volume illustrated with six or more full page plates in tint.
Cloth, 12mo, with decorative cover, per volume, 60 cents


LIST OF TITLES

    BY MARY HAZELTON WADE, MARY F.
    NIXON-ROULET, BLANCHE MCMANUS,
    CLARA V. WINLOW, FLORENCE E.
    MENDEL AND OTHERS

    =Our Little African Cousin=
    =Our Little Alaskan Cousin=
    =Our Little Arabian Cousin=
    =Our Little Argentine Cousin=
    =Our Little Armenian Cousin=
    =Our Little Australian Cousin=
    =Our Little Austrian Cousin=
    =Our Little Belgian Cousin=
    =Our Little Boer Cousin=
    =Our Little Bohemian Cousin=
    =Our Little Brazilian Cousin=
    =Our Little Bulgarian Cousin=
    =Our Little Canadian Cousin=
    =Our Little Chinese Cousin=
    =Our Little Cossack Cousin=
    =Our Little Cuban Cousin=
    =Our Little Danish Cousin=
    =Our Little Dutch Cousin=
    =Our Little Egyptian Cousin=
    =Our Little English Cousin=
    =Our Little Eskimo Cousin=
    =Our Little French Cousin=
    =Our Little German Cousin=
    =Our Little Grecian Cousin=
    =Our Little Hawaiian Cousin=
    =Our Little Hindu Cousin=
    =Our Little Hungarian Cousin=
    =Our Little Indian Cousin=
    =Our Little Irish Cousin=
    =Our Little Italian Cousin=
    =Our Little Japanese Cousin=
    =Our Little Jewish Cousin=
    =Our Little Korean Cousin=
    =Our Little Malayan (Brown) Cousin=
    =Our Little Mexican Cousin=
    =Our Little Norwegian Cousin=
    =Our Little Panama Cousin=
    =Our Little Persian Cousin=
    =Our Little Philippine Cousin=
    =Our Little Polish Cousin=
    =Our Little Porto Rican Cousin=
    =Our Little Portuguese Cousin=
    =Our Little Russian Cousin=
    =Our Little Scotch Cousin=
    =Our Little Servian Cousin=
    =Our Little Siamese Cousin=
    =Our Little Spanish Cousin=
    =Our Little Swedish Cousin=
    =Our Little Swiss Cousin=
    =Our Little Turkish Cousin=



THE LITTLE COUSINS OF LONG AGO SERIES

The volumes in this series describe the boys and girls of ancient times.

    _Each small 12mo, cloth decorative, illustrated_      60c.


=OUR LITTLE ATHENIAN COUSIN OF LONG AGO=

By JULIA DARROW COWLES.


=OUR LITTLE CARTHAGINIAN COUSIN OF LONG AGO=

By CLARA V. WINLOW.


=OUR LITTLE MACEDONIAN COUSIN OF LONG AGO=

By JULIA DARROW COWLES.


=OUR LITTLE NORMAN COUSIN OF LONG AGO=

By EVALEEN STEIN.


=OUR LITTLE ROMAN COUSIN OF LONG AGO=

By JULIA DARROW COWLES.


=OUR LITTLE SAXON COUSIN OF LONG AGO=

By JULIA DARROW COWLES.


=OUR LITTLE SPARTAN COUSIN OF LONG AGO=

By JULIA DARROW COWLES.


=OUR LITTLE VIKING COUSIN OF LONG AGO=

By CHARLES H. L. JOHNSTON.


_IN PREPARATION_

=OUR LITTLE POMPEIIAN COUSIN OF LONG AGO=

       *       *       *       *       *

Transcriber's Notes:

Obvious punctuation errors repaired.

Page 24, "acquaintance'" changed to "acquaintance's" (acquaintance's
feelings)





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