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Title: The Silent Readers: Sixth Reader

Author: William Dodge Lewis

Ethel Maltby Gehres

Albert Lindsay Rowland

Illustrator: Edwin John Prittie

Frederick Richardson

Release date: July 29, 2012 [eBook #40369]

Language: English

Credits: Produced by Juliet Sutherland, Douglas L. Alley, III and
the Online Distributed Proofreading Team at


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[Pg ii]

Copyright, 1920, by
The John C. Winston Company

Copyright in Great Britain and the
British Dominions and Possessions


[Pg iii]


The purpose of this series. This series of readers is definitely designed to provide working material for the development of efficient "silent reading". It is not planned to compete with the many excellent series of readers now available. The authors believe that it will efficiently supplement the well-nigh universal school practice of conducting all reading lessons aloud.

Oral reading not sufficient. In the majority of classes the pupils are all supplied with the same text. One pupil reads aloud while the others are supposed to follow his reading silently. When he has finished his portion of the text, the teacher or the pupils make corrections of his pronunciation or phrasing, and the teacher may ask questions or add comments or explanations. This incentive to adequate expression by the reader is lacking because his classmates all have the text before them; it is natural for the hearers to read on ahead of the oral reader if the material is of interest; and it is perfectly easy for them to gaze absently at the book while employing their minds with matters wholly unrelated to the class exercise. Perhaps most important of all, reading aloud is an experience of rare occurrence outside the classroom, while silent reading is a universal daily experience for all but the illiterate.

The mechanics of reading are fairly well mastered in the third—some authorities say the second—grade. Some oral reading is doubtless desirable beyond these grades, but the relative amount should diminish rapidly.

Experts have recognized the importance of silent reading for many years. Briggs and Coffman showed its value in their book, "Reading in Public Schools," published in 1908. Studies in this field have been made by Gray, Starch, Judd, Courtis, Monroe, Kelly, and many others. They have made no attempt to deny that oral reading has a place in the curriculum, but have merely pointed out that from the third grade[Pg iv] on its place is less and less important in comparison with silent reading.

Reading to get the thought quickly. Once the mechanics of reading are mastered, the problem becomes one of speed and accuracy in thought-getting. Upon these two qualities depends the pupil's progress in school and his use of the deluge of ideas that appeal only through the printed page. If he reads and understands, if he quickly grasps the important idea from a mass of details, if he arranges the relations of the ideas presented, we say that he is good in geography, history, science, or mathematics. If he comprehends only slowly or fails to understand, he is a dullard or a defective.

Speed usually goes with comprehension. At first glance it would seem that comprehension would be inversely proportional to speed; that is, the greater the speed the poorer the comprehension and vice versa. The standard tests of Gray, Courtis, Kelly, and Monroe, however, which have been given to thousands of children, prove exactly the reverse. The rapid silent readers have almost invariably shown the best understanding of the matter read. It would thus seem that concentrated effort on either speed or comprehension would tend to improve the other factor. It is necessary, however, to test speed results carefully to insure conscientious reading of the text.

The material in these books. In selecting the material for these books the authors have purposely avoided the established paths of literary reputation, and have selected from a wide variety of sources interesting material representative of the printed matter the child will inevitably read. Every effort has been made to avoid the necessity of explanation by the teacher to elucidate the text. In general, the exercises have been under- rather than over-graded, as the pupil should read for content and should be as far as possible relieved from technical grammatical or vocabulary difficulties. Occasionally, however, in each book exercises somewhat more difficult or of a more or less unusual nature have been included,[Pg v] because everyone, old or young, is called upon to read a variety of material, and pupils should have some experience with selections that require special effort.

Why we read. Most of the reading which we do has one of three purposes: we read for information; we read for instruction; we read for appreciation or entertainment. These purposes are somewhat determined by the nature of the material read. Rarely do we read an encyclopedia article for appreciation. On the other hand, we lose ourselves in the quiet humor of Rip Van Winkle merely for entertainment through appreciation. Contrasted with this would be our reading of a biography of Irving in order to find out who were his American contemporaries. The boy who reads an explanation of how to make a rabbit trap with the purpose of making one is reading for instruction, while his father who scans the evening paper to see how his representative in Congress or the State Legislature voted on a bill is reading purely for information.

The Pedagogical Editing. The authors have kept constantly in mind the purposes of each selection in the directions they have given to the pupils. They have also had clearly in mind certain fundamental things that they wish pupils to learn and certain habits which they wish them to form by the use of these books. A perusal of the directions given before and after any given selection will suffice to make this purpose clear. For example, much attention is given to the writing of headings for certain parts of a selection or to the statement of the most important thought in a given paragraph. With increasing emphasis in the upper grades this type of exercise is developed into the complete outline. The authors believe that practice of this kind will develop in pupils the habit of looking for the important thought and of grouping around it related subordinate ideas. This is perhaps the habit most essential to good reading for instruction or information. On the other hand, selections which are of a purely literary character and which should be read for appreciation and entertainment are given without exhaustive notes or questions,[Pg vi] because minute discussion of this kind of reading would detract from its value.

Method of handling the books. Many teachers will prefer to keep the books in the class room, distributing them at the time of the silent reading lesson and collecting them again at its conclusion. In this way the material will remain fresh, and the drill exercises will always be under the control of the teacher.

In many places, however, text books are not supplied by the school authorities, but are purchased by the pupils directly. Inasmuch as this series of books contains all the necessary instruction for the use of each exercise, they become peculiarly helpful where the pupil is thrown upon his own resources. He is able to test his own speed and comprehension and his ability to analyze or outline any of the material by the plain directions that are given for handling the books. Although the instructions accompanying various selections are addressed to the pupils, they contain suggestions for the teacher. It is, therefore, important that the teacher read in advance of the lesson such instructions or comments as appear before or after the text or the particular exercise to be read.

Speed drills. As much of the value of teaching silent reading lies in the development of speed, a number of exercises are designated as speed drills. For these drills it is suggested that the teacher prepare, on the mimeograph if possible, a considerable number of slips to be filled out arranged as follows:

  10/4/22   5A   G. P. W.
  Date   Grade   Teacher's Initials
or Room Number.

Name of Exercise Page

Pupils Time in Minutes
Brown, Mary
Carmalt, Joseph 3
Derr, Jane 4
Eldridge, Henry[Pg vii] 5
Fisher, Mary
Green, Alice 6
Hunt, Roy
Knowlton, William 5
Manly, Rose 4
Morris, Mary
Newton, George 5
Newton, Thomas
Orr, Robert 5
Pierce, Helen 6
Porter, Clara 5
Roberts, John 4
Rowe, Gertrude 6
Smith, Fred 5
Vaughn, Lee 6
Wilson, Alice

1-3, 1-3½, 3-4, 2-4½, 6-5, 2-5½, 4-6, 1-8½.

Class median 5     Class mode 5

For a speed drill the teacher should have one of these slips and a watch with a second hand. A stop watch would be valuable. Directions should be given for all the pupils to begin reading at the same moment and raise their hands as a signal to the teacher when they have finished. The teacher should give the signal for them to begin as the second hand of her watch reaches sixty. As each pupil raises his hand indicating that he has finished, the teacher should note the time in half minutes opposite that pupil's name on the drill sheet. Any pupil's time should be indicated at the nearest half minute space. For example, a pupil who finishes at two minutes ten seconds should be marked as two minutes; one who finishes at two minutes twenty seconds, at two and one-half.

Mode and Median. In the illustration above, the sheet has[Pg viii] been filled with names and scores of a supposed fifth grade class of twenty pupils. On this sheet three minutes occurs once, three and one-half minutes once, four minutes three times, four and one-half minutes twice, five minutes six times, five and one-half minutes twice, six minutes four times and eight and one-half minutes once. The number occurring the largest number of times is five.

This number is called the "mode".

If all the scores are arranged in order with the highest score at the top and the lowest score at the bottom, the middle score in this series is called the "median" and is in this case also "five".

Individual scores. The class median or mode is, however, not so significant as the individual scores. The class score is always determined by the ease or difficulty as well as by the length of the particular exercise read. This makes comparison with other exercises almost valueless. The only significant comparison in this case is between individuals of the same class, and between the score of this class and of other classes of parallel grade who have read the same exercise.

Important facts for G. P. W., the class teacher, in this case are the individual scores and their relative standing. Roy Hunt, who took eight and one-half minutes to read this exercise, is the slowest reader on this occasion. Is this true of other occasions? If so, Roy needs special help and training. It is also clear that Joseph Carmalt and Alice Wilson are rapid readers and it is important to see that their comprehension of the exercise is also adequate. Thus, for the class teacher the important facts are the relative scores of the pupils both in comparison with other pupils and with the former scores of the same pupils.

Scale of approximate speed. The following scale of speeds by grades is based roughly on the Courtis standard tests and may be somewhat helpful to the teacher who may desire such norms.

[Pg ix]

Grade Words per minute
4 140-180
5 160-200
6 180-220
7 190-230
8 200-240

Of course it must be recognized that no standard speeds are possible without also standardizing the material. To be absolutely accurate, each separate exercise should be its own speed standard. This, although possible, would be a device so cumbersome as to defeat its own purpose. Every bit of reading presents its peculiar difficulties, its slow spots, its points of interest, its urge to hurry on. These in turn vary with the apperception of the reader, with his peculiarities, his interests, and his motives. These largely determine his speed. The authors have thought it unwise in the vast majority of cases to indicate with any degree of definiteness the time required for various exercises. Their experience in trying out these exercises with different classes showed so wide a variation that it was thought that specific statements would tend only to mislead the teacher.

Testing Comprehension. It is, however, equally important that the teacher know that the pupils are understanding what they read. As each pupil is reading silently, there is no guarantee of comprehension without some form of check. This may be as simple a device as watching the expression of the children's faces to see registered there appreciation of the exercise read; or it may be as complex as a dramatic reproduction of the incidents.

Devices for checking comprehension are suggested in connection with each exercise. The more usual and effective methods of teaching comprehension are dramatization, reproduction, writing of headlines, development of outlines, expression of opinion based upon facts read, topical analysis, the naming of characters and statements of their relationships, and appreciation of ethical or artistic appeal.

[Pg x]

The test material. The drill exercise, although modeled in some cases upon the standard reading and intelligence tests, expressly disclaim any attempt to displace or supersede these tests. The function of the two is wholly different. The material in the readers is for drill and improvement in speed and comprehension. The standard tests are for the measurement of achievement. No devices can be used as a measure until it has been standardized by application in thousands of concrete cases without substantial variation.

Standard Tests. This is the case with a number of standard tests now in general use. In the field of reading the most notable are the Courtis Standard Tests devised by S. A. Courtis, Director of Instruction, Teacher Training and Research, and Dean of Teachers College, Detroit, Michigan, and Walter S. Monroe, Professor of Education and Director of the Bureau of Educational Research, University of Illinois. The necessary instructions, record blanks and test sheets giving these tests may be obtained as follows:

Directions for Ordering Standardized Tests

Test. How many tests to order. How many directions, record sheets, and other accessories to order. Used in what grades. Publisher. Price.
Monroe's Standardized Silent Reading Tests One copy of the test for each pupil. All directions are printed on either the test or on the class record sheet. One record sheet is furnished with each 25 copies of the test. Additional copies may be ordered if desired. 3 to 8 Public School Publicity Co., Bloomington, Illinois. Including complete directions and record sheets, 60c per 100 copies; postage extra, 9c per 100.
Courtis's Silent Reading Test No. 2 One copy of the test for each pupil. Folder B, Series R, contains detailed directions for giving the test and for scoring by the pupils. One copy is needed for each person giving the test. Folder D, Series R, contains detailed directions for completing the scoring, for recording the scores, and for calculating class scores. One copy is needed for each person giving the test. A class record sheet for recording the scores of a class is needed for each class. A school record and graph sheet for Silent Reading No. 2 is needed for each school. 2 to 6 S. A. Courtis. Test only, $1.80 per 100; Folder B, 5c; Folder D, 5c; Class Record Sheet, 1½c each; Record Sheet No. 3 and Graph Sheet 1½c each.

[Pg xi]

These tests should be given at least once a year and if possible semi-annually in order to determine progress in speed and comprehension in silent reading, as well as to measure the pupils by a well established standard.

Topical recitation. Particular emphasis, especially in the later grades, should be placed upon the complete presentation of a topic by a pupil standing in front of the class and making the group understand what he has to say without questions by the teacher. More and more this is coming to be emphasized as a means of good teaching everywhere; and pupils are being trained to stand before a group of their classmates and give an intelligent account of anything of which they have adequate knowledge without the painful tooth-pulling process of extracting ideas.

The philosophy of study. One of the most important results of efficient teaching of silent reading is the contribution which it makes to the whole problem of study in the school. Briggs says that the primary purpose of the school is to teach people to do better the desirable things that they are likely to do anyway. One of the desirable things that school children are not only likely but certain to have to do is to study. A large portion of the studying that the child as well as the adult does consists in the acquirement of information from the printed page. It is essentially silent reading. Much of the difficulty teachers now meet in the inability of their pupils to study will be dispelled by effective teaching of silent reading. Probably no use of the same amount of time would yield more definite and valuable results than will thorough instruction in the process of thought getting from a printed page—in other words—silent reading.

[Pg xii]


Grateful acknowledgment is made to the following authors and publishers for their courtesy in allowing the use of the copyrighted material in this volume: to J. Russell Smith for "The Eskimo" and "Otelne, the Indian of the Great North Woods"; to A. and C. Black for five selections from the series "Peeps at Many Lands"; to Augustus R. Keller and Company for Oscar Wilde's "The Happy Prince"; to J. Berg Esenwein for two selections from "Stories for Children and How to Tell Them"; to W. F. Quarrie and Company for four selections from "The World Book"; to The Youth's Companion for John Clair Minot's "Pietro's Adventure", and "Noblesse Oblige"; to the J. B. Lippincott Company for "The Mole Awakes" from Dr. S. C. Schmucker's "Under the Open Sky", and "A Trip to the Moon" from Charles R. Gibson's "The Stars and Their Mysteries"; to D. Appleton and Company for two selections from the "Boy Scouts' Year Book"; to the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia for C. A. Sienkiewicz's "The Safest Place"; to the Association Press for "The First Potter" and "The Fire Spirit" from Hanford M. Burr's "Around the Fire"; to Boys' Life, the Boy Scouts' Magazine, for "The Ghost of Terrible Terry"; to Longmans, Green and Company for "The Boyhood of a Painter", from Andrew Lang's "The Strange Story Book"; and to the Public Ledger of Philadelphia for "General Pershing's Welcome Home". Henry W. Longfellow's "The Skeleton in Armor" is used by permission of, and under arrangement with, Houghton Mifflin Company, authorized publishers.

The authors of The Silent Readers wish to acknowledge the careful and efficient assistance of Miss Mabel Dodge Holmes of the William Penn High School of Philadelphia, and of Superintendent Sidney V. Rowland of Radnor Township, Pa.

[Pg xiii]


Silent Reading 1
The Eskimo J. Russell Smith 2
Scottish Border Warfare Elizabeth Grierson 9
The New Wonderland Mabel Dodge Holmes 11
Bristol 16
On the Frontier 18
The Happy Prince Oscar Wilde 19
Can You Follow Directions? 29
Feeding French Children 30
Genevieve's Letter 34
Travel Robert Louis Stevenson 35
How the Wish Came True 36
Rules for Using the Eyes 37
Acting for the Movies 38
Clear Thinking 40
The Land of Equal Chance 41
The Broken Flower-Pot Bulwer-Lytton 46
Saint George and the Dragon 51
Nonsense Test 56
Turning Out the Intruder 57
Roosevelt's Favorite Study William Draper Lewis 58
What a Chimney Is 61
Is It True? 62
Franklin Writes for the Newspaper 63
Yes or No? 64
How to Make a Sun-Dial 65[Pg xiv]
Putting Words Where They Belong 67
An Indian Buffalo Hunt 68
Indian Life and Customs 76
Can You Understand Relationship? 89
Opening the Great West 90
Turning Out the Intruder 96
The Training of a Boy King H. E. Marshall 97
"Some Ugly Old Lawyer" 103
Adding the Right Words 104
The Desert Indians' "Fire Bed" 105
Yes or No? 105
Pietro's Adventure John Clair Minot 106
Some Patriotic Mine Workers 111
Father Domino 112
The Good Giant Wins His Fortune 116
The Mole Awakes S. C. Schmucker 117
The Count and the Robbers Beatrix Jungman 119
What the Earliest Men Did for Us Smith Burnham 124
Try This 136
Putting Words Where They Belong 137
Making Money Earn Money 138
Heroes of History Mabel Dodge Holmes 139
The Skeleton in Armor Henry Wadsworth Longfellow 149
Acting for the Movies 156
The Safest Place Casimir A. Sienkiewicz 158
Unpatriotic Carelessness 167
A Memory Test 169
Caliph for One Day 170
The First Potter Hanford M. Burr 180
Finding Opposites 187[Pg xv]
"It's Quite True!" Hans Christian Andersen 188
Tangled Sentences 191
How Sella Lost Her Slippers Mabel Dodge Holmes 192
The Ghost of Terrible Terry 198
Roast Chicken 203
Why the Echo Answers Mabel Dodge Holmes 204
The Fight with the Sea Beatrix Jungman 207
Agriculture 210
Can You Do this One? 215
The Inchcape Rock Robert Southey 216
Some Definitions 218
The Battle of Morgarten John Finnemore 219
Finding Opposites 222
What Mekolka Knows 223
The Bear's Night 228
Is It the Same Bear? 231
The Chinese New Year's Day Lena E. Johnston 232
Adding the Right Words 235
The Good Citizen—How He Uses Matches 236
Noblesse Oblige 242
The Magic Horse 243
Thinking 255
What is a Boy Scout? 256
The Scout and the Knight 258
The Fire Spirit Hanford M. Burr 259
The Boyhood of a Painter Andrew Lang 273
Civil Death 277
Otelne, The Indian of the Great North Woods J. Russell Smith 278
Which is Right? 288[Pg xvi]
"Verdun Belle" 290
Another Nonsense Test 296
Can You Understand Relationship? 297
Charades 298
General Pershing's Welcome Home 299
The Fairies on the Gump Mabel Quiller-Couch 303
Thinking and Doing 312
A Trip to the Moon Charles R. Gibson 312

[Pg 1]


The book which you are now beginning is, as its title tells you, a silent reader; that is, a reader that you are to read to yourself, silently. It is much more interesting to read silently than to read aloud, and it is also much faster. With all the wonderful books and valuable articles that are being printed every day, it is important that you learn to read rapidly as well as to understand.

The purpose of this book is to help you to read fast and to understand clearly what you read. You will find all sorts of reading; animal stories, poems, fairy tales, problems, descriptions of strange places, puzzles, war stories, and lots of other things. We think you will find it very interesting, but the important thing is to use all this material to make yourself a rapid and at the same time a careful reader.

Of course you are much too old to move your lips when you read. If you have this habit you must break it at once, for you will never read rapidly as long as you continue to pronounce words even to yourself. It takes just as long to pronounce a word to yourself as to read it aloud. You must learn not to do so, if you are to gain speed in reading.

Your teacher is going to help you in every possible way and will frequently time you when you read and then test you to see if you have understood what you have read. But you will have to do the most yourself if you are really to learn to read rapidly and well.

[Pg 2]


You will be able to remember what you read and to tell about it much better if you form the habit of making a brief outline as you go along. You can learn to make this outline without writing anything down, but in the beginning it would be a good plan to write down the topics as you come to them.

At the end of this selection you will find suggestions for making an outline.

Suppose there was no grocery where you could get bread or flour or potatoes, no meat shop, no milk dealer. Make it worse and suppose there was no place where you could buy clothes, shoes, coal or wood, balls or bats, sleds or knives. Suppose you had to go without all these things unless your father and mother or brothers and sisters helped you to make them. You would all have to work very hard and even then be poor, and often hungry, cold, and wet. You could not live in town because there is not ground enough there to raise potatoes and other things to eat. You would have to live in the country, where there is more land near each home. Your father would have to learn how to build a house, how to make shoes, how to make his tools, and how to do many things which the people you know never need to think about now. Your mother would have to make even the cloth for your clothes and to prepare all the food you had. That is, your family would have to make everything that you had in your home, or that you ate, or wore, or played with, or used in the garden. They would be busy all the time. Every family would have to have more businesses or trades than you can find in some small towns, and many of the things you have now they could not make at all, so you would not have them. For a long time, a very long time, that is the way people[Pg 3] used to live all over the world. It was a hard life. There are even yet many places where people do not use machines and where every family makes everything for its own use.

The Eskimos live that way. Their country is far away to the north. It is a very poor, cold country, where very few things will grow, so there are not many Eskimos. Robinson Crusoe tried living all by himself for a while, but he had a lot of tools from the ship, and his island was rich in food and wood. He found goats there that gave milk; he found good wild grapes and other fruits; but he said he had to work very hard, even though he did not have any family to support. The Eskimo country is much poorer than Crusoe's island. It is away up north where the winter is very long and cold, and the summer is so short that no trees grow, and there are not many other plants. The Eskimo has no animals to give milk; he never heard of potatoes or bread, to say nothing of cake.

It is hard to get the things you need in such a country. For a winter house the Eskimo often builds a little hut of snow. Many boys and girls in the cooler parts of the United States and Canada have built a little snow house for sport, but the Eskimo finds it the warmest house he can get. If it has a window, you cannot see through it, for it is a piece of fish skin that looks like dirty glass. To keep the cold out he makes the doorway so low that people must crawl in. Then he builds a long tunnel outside the door to keep the wind out, and puts a chunk of snow in the outer end of the tunnel for a door. Along the sides of the house inside is a bank of snow covered with skins. This is both chair and bed.

If he made the room as warm as we make our houses, the roof would melt and drip down his neck. But he does not have enough fire to warm it much anyhow. The little fire he has for cooking is made by burning the fat of animals in an oil lamp.

[Pg 4] The Eskimo Boy and His Father Fishing

The Eskimo Boy and His Father Fishing

Not long ago a man named Rasmussen, whose father[Pg 5] was a missionary in Greenland and whose mother was an Eskimo, made a long journey through Eskimo land. At one place he found a dead whale on the seashore and the Eskimos there felt as rich as we should if a carload of coal or fire-wood were dumped down in the yard. They were busy tearing off strips of the fat, called blubber, that lies under the whale's skin. Some of them were hauling it two days' journey on their sleds. Some of the people Rasmussen saw had never even heard of white men or of any of the things the white man makes. They themselves had to make everything they had.

Their boats (or kyaks) were of seal skins sewed into a water-tight sheet and stretched over a frame-work of whale rib bones and long walrus tusks, tied together with sinews and strips of leather. In these tiny boats they paddle around in the sea and catch seals with spears.

Nearly all the Eskimos live along the seashore where they can catch fish, seals and walrus. The seal is the greatest wealth the Eskimo has. The seal eats fish and keeps warm in the ice-cold water because he has a coat of soft, fine, water-proof fur, and under his skin a thick layer of fat. Seal meat is bread to the Eskimo. He cooks with seal fat and makes clothes, boats, and tents of the sealskin.

In winter the Eskimo wears two suits of fur, one with the fur inside and the other with the fur outside. In summer one suit is enough.

When spring comes and the snow house begins to melt, the Eskimo moves into his sealskin tent or into a stone hut chinked with dirt. Some of these stone huts are hundreds of years old. Toward the end of summer there are some[Pg 6] berries that get ripe on low-growing bushes, and many bright flowers bloom in the northland. Then the Eskimos sometimes make trips inland. They eat berries, rabbit meat, birds, and wild reindeer. Wild ducks and many other birds are there in summer, but they fly away to warm lands when cold weather comes, and the people go back to the seashore to lay in their winter supply of seal meat.

The wild animals that live here all the time do not seem to mind the cold. They have warm fur, and the rabbit changes his color to keep from getting caught. He is snow white in winter so that the fox cannot see him on the snow, but in summer his coat is brown so that the fox cannot see him on the ground.

The Eskimo has one helper, the dog that pulls his sled. We call him the "huskie". This dog has a thick, warm coat so that he can curl up in the dry snow, put his four feet and his nose into a little bunch, lay his bushy tail over them, and sleep through a blinding snow storm that would freeze a white man to death. Sometimes the snow covers him entirely as he sleeps and he has to dig himself out when he wakes up.

When Admiral Peary went over the ice to the North Pole, in 1909, Eskimo dogs pulled the sleds that carried his food and tents, and Eskimo men helped him. He found them to be honest, brave men, trusty helpers, and good friends.

The Eskimos are very fond of games. They play football and several kinds of shinny, using long bones for shinny sticks. Sometimes they skate on new smooth ice, using bone skates tied fast to their soft shoes. As they do not go to school and have no books, the days must seem long in bad weather, for they have nothing to do but sit around the little fire in the dark smoky little snow house. They have many indoor games. The house is too small to play[Pg 7] tag or run around, so they have sitting down games. There are as many as fifty kinds of string games something like our cat's cradle.

This is the simplest kind of living to be found anywhere in the world. Every family in the world needs a certain amount of food, clothes, fuel, shelter, tools, and playthings. In different countries there are different ways of getting these things, depending on the weather, on the things that will grow, and the things that man finds in the ground, or in the woods, or in the sea. Each Eskimo family must make or get all these things for itself.

The Eskimos do not need money because they do not buy nor sell. If two Eskimos should meet and want to trade two dogs for a sled, they would just trade as two schoolboys swap knives. The Eskimos would be much more comfortable if they could trade some of their sealskins for lumber to build houses and for flour and dried fruit to eat with their never ending meat. We cannot trade with them because they are too far away for us to build railroads to their land, and the sea is so full of ice that ships cannot get through it Perhaps the aeroplane will let us see more of the Eskimo.

J. Russell Smith.      
Courtesy of the John C. Winston Co.


Glance quickly at the first paragraph. How would this do as a title or topic for it: "Doing things for yourself"?

The second paragraph connects the idea that it is very hard to do everything for yourself with the various things told about the Eskimo in the rest of the story. So that you may understand better, the Eskimo is compared with Robinson Crusoe, who had to do everything for himself but had a better chance because of the country in which he lived. A topic for the[Pg 8] second paragraph might be, "The Eskimo's life compared with Robinson Crusoe's".

Beginning with the third paragraph, the author tells how the Eskimo lives. It is not necessary to make a topic for every paragraph. We can make a general heading under which some of his ways of living can be grouped. Arrange the heading and the sub-headings as follows:

How the Eskimo manages to live.

    (a) His house.
    (b) His food,
    (c) His clothing.

Now look through the rest of the story, and you will see that it can be included under the following headings:

    The Eskimo dog.
    Eskimo games.
    Why the Eskimo does not buy and sell.

In making an outline it is not necessary to put in every single idea in the piece you are outlining.

Now, after going through the selection to see how the outline is made, you can easily answer the following questions:

1. How does it happen that you do not have to depend on your own family for the things you eat and wear and use? Make a list of the people who help you to get the things necessary for every-day life. Your list might begin with the baker, the milk-man, and the shoemaker.

2. Try to draw a picture of the outside of the Eskimo's winter house as it is described here.

3. Make a list of the things you think an Eskimo boy or girl about your age would do from morning to night—his day's program, you may call it.

4. Do you think the Eskimo is glad when summer comes? Why?

5. Tell a story that a "huskie" might tell of his experiences.

6. Make a list of raw materials, such as wood, that would make the life of the Eskimo more comfortable.

[Pg 9]


From your study of the way to make an outline of "The Eskimo", you will be able to make an outline of "Scottish Border Warfare" yourself.

Read the selection through, and then go back and write topics that cover the main points.

Legends of the Scottish borders tell the exciting stories of a warfare that went on for a hundred years, in the days before England and Scotland were united. The "Borders" consisted of that part of the country in the South of Scotland where the boundary was not properly fixed. The King of England might claim a piece of land that the King of Scotland thought was his, and the King of Scotland might do the same by the King of England. And so, because things were never really settled in these parts, and men thought they could do pretty much as they liked, a constant warfare sprang up between the families who lived on the English side of the border and those who lived on the Scottish side. These families formed great clans, almost like the Highland clans, and every man in the clan rose in arms at the bidding of his chief.

The warfare which they carried on was not honest fighting so much as something that sounds to us very much like stealing; only in these old plundering, or "reiving" days, as they were called, people were not very particular about other people's property, and right was often decided by might. So when these old Border chieftains found that their larders were getting empty, they sent messages around the countryside to their retainers, telling them to meet them that night at some secret trysting-place, and ride with them into England to steal some English yeoman's flock of sheep.

[Pg 10]

In the darkness, groups of men, mounted on rough, shaggy ponies, would assemble at some lonely spot among the hills and ride stealthily into Cumberland or Northumberland, and surround some Englishman's little flock of sheep, or herd of cattle, and drive them off, setting fire, perhaps, to his cottage and haystacks at the same time.

The Englishman might be unable to retaliate at the moment, but no sooner were the reivers' backs turned than he betook himself with all haste to his chieftain, who, in his turn, gathered his men together, and rode over into Scotland to take vengeance, and, if possible, bring back with him a larger drove of sheep and cattle than had been stolen, or "lifted", by the Scotch.

And so things went merrily on, with raids and counter-raids, and fierce little encounters, and brave men slain. You can read the accounts of many of these raids in Sir Walter Scott's "Border Minstrelsy"—about "Kinmont Willie," "Dick o' the Cow," "Jamie Telfer of the Fair Dodhead," "Johnnie Armstrong," and "the Raid of the Reidswire"—and if you ever chance to be traveling between Hawick and Carlisle you can look out of the window, as the train carries you swiftly down Liddesdale, and people the hillsides, in your imagination, with companies of reivers setting out to harry their "auld enemies", the English.

From "A Peep at Scotland",    
by Elizabeth Grierson.


1. What were the "Borders"?

2. From the way they are used, tell what you think the following words mean: "reiving," larders, retainers, clan, trysting-place, yeoman, retaliate, "lifted," harry.

[Pg 11]


You have probably, like Betty, the little girl in this story, read "Alice in Wonderland". If you haven't, you will find out, before you have read very far on this page, when Alice lived. Glance at the first part of the story and see.

Alice, in the book that Betty had been reading, had wonderful adventures in a strange country, where rabbits and caterpillars talked, and where certain kinds of cake made you grow taller or shorter, and where people put pepper in tea. Anybody would think a country like that was a Wonderland; but you will see that Alice found our everyday, twentieth-century world is a Wonderland, too. See if you can tell why she thought so.

Betty laid down her book with a sigh. It had been a lovely book, and she was sorry it was finished. "Such a humdrum old world!" she said discontentedly. "I wish I had a chance to go to Wonderland, like Alice."

"Why," said a voice from the doorway, "isn't this Wonderland, then?"

Betty looked up, startled. She saw a little girl of about her own age, with long, light, straight hair hanging to her waist, with wide, wondering blue eyes, and dressed in the simplest, most old-fashioned of little white frocks.

"Who are you?" inquired Betty.

"Why, don't you know me? I'm Alice," said the quaint little girl.

"How did you get here? I thought you lived a long time ago, in 1850 or so."

"Oh, yes, I did begin to live then; but you see I've been traveling in Wonderland so long that I've never had time to grow up."

"Aren't you sorry to have come back to real life, and begin to do lessons, and mind what the older people say, and all?"

[Pg 12]

"Oh, but I haven't! Of course, I suppose the people in Wonderland don't know they are queer, and so that's why you don't know you live there."

"Well," said Betty scornfully, "I'm sure I don't see anything to wonder at in this old place—" Just then a bell rang sharply, and Betty hurried to answer the telephone. It was her father speaking. She took his message and returned to her guest.

"What in the world," said Alice, "made you talk into that little black cup?"

"Why, that's the telephone."

"What's a telephone? We didn't have them in my time, I'm sure."

"Oh, everybody has one now. It lets you talk to somebody 'way off, over an electric wire."

"Of course, we read about Franklin and his kite and all that. Let me try it." But when the operator's voice saying "Number, please?" came to Alice's ear, she was so frightened that she dropped the receiver.

"I can show you lots more things we do with electricity," said Betty, beginning to understand that things which were commonplace to her were wonders to her visitor. "You see it's getting dark? Now watch." Going to the push-button in the wall she snapped on the light; Alice jumped at its suddenness.

"Why, at home we had to find matches and light a lamp," she said in amazement.

"That's nothing," said Betty. "Come along." She led her new friend into the dining room, and showed her how, by pressing a button, the rack could be heated for toasting bread, or heat supplied for the coffee pot. Then they went on into the kitchen, and she showed Alice the gas stove, where a flame sprang into life at the turning of a handle; and the washing-machine, where the pressing of another button set the clothes to churning up and down in the suds; and the electric iron, heated by the pressing of still another button.

[Pg 13] Betty Showed Her the Victrola

Betty Showed Her the Victrola

"Why, nobody needs to do any work at all," said Alice[Pg 14] admiringly, while Betty began to feel that after all she had a great many remarkable things in her house, which she had never thought much about because they had always been there. As they walked back into the hall, they heard a click-clicking sound.

"What's that?" said Alice.

"Oh, it's just my big brother's wireless apparatus catching a message. If he were here he could tell us what it says."

"What's a wireless?"

"Why, you don't know anything much, do you?" Betty explained as well as she could about the wireless telegraph.

"Goodness! That's like real magic. You must feel as if you were living in a fairy story."

Betty had never thought of life in that way, and was about to tell Alice how really dull a time she had, when a sound of music interrupted them.

"Oh, how lovely! Somebody's singing!"

"No, you little goose, that's only the victrola," answered Betty.

"What's a victrola?"

Betty tried to explain that it was a machine that caught and imprisoned somebody's voice or the music of some instrument. But Alice couldn't understand. Even when Betty showed her the victrola, and the record, she could hardly believe that a real singer wasn't hidden somewhere making fun of her.

While she was still unpersuaded, Betty heard her father's[Pg 15] key in the lock. She knew the car must still be before the door.

"Father, father," she cried, "this is Alice—from Wonderland, you know. Won't you take us for a ride?"

"A little one," said Betty's father. Alice clapped her hands, for she loved to go driving. But when the two little girls were safely seated in the back seat, she began to wonder again.

"Where are the horses?" she inquired.

"Horses! Why, it's an automobile."

"What's an automobile?"

"Why, a carriage that runs of itself." The car started, and Alice understood without further explaining. She couldn't ask any more questions, because the rapid motion quite took away her breath.

Betty asked Alice to spend the night with her, and promised that next morning she would take her to town and show her some more of the sights of the New Wonderland. She went to sleep feeling that after all it wasn't such a humdrum world, and that she had taken for granted a great many things that, when you came to think of it, really made life a fairy tale, and the world Wonderland.

Mabel Dodge Holmes


1. Alice was no more surprised than any little girl of 1850 would be. What has happened in the world since that time to make it a Wonderland?

2. Why was the telephone a wonder to Alice?

3. Make a list of the wonders Betty showed Alice. Add to this list any similar wonders that you could show her in your house.

4. Can you think of some of the wonders that Betty showed Alice in their trip to the city?

[Pg 16]


Here is an account of the City of Bristol taken from an encyclopedia. Without reading the whole account, find as quickly as possible the answer to each of the following questions, in order.

1. Where is Bristol?
2. Is it an attractive city?
3. Is it an industrial city?
4. Is it a healthy city?
5. Are there many public buildings there?
6. If you had children could they be well educated there?
7. Has it had any famous citizens?
8. Is it a seaport or an inland city?
9. Is it a large city?

Bristol, a cathedral city of England, situated partly in Gloucestershire, partly in Somersetshire, but forming a county in itself. In 1911 it had a population of 357,059. It stands at the confluence of the rivers Avon and Frome, which unite within the city whence the combined stream (the Avon) pursues a course of nearly seven miles to the Bristol Channel. The Avon is a navigable river, and the tides rise in it to a great height. The town is built partly on low grounds, partly on eminences, and has some fine suburban districts, such as Clifton, on the opposite side of the Avon, connected with Bristol by a suspension bridge 703 feet long and 245 feet above high-water mark. The public buildings are numerous and handsome, and the number of places of worship very great. The most notable of these are the cathedral, founded in 1142, exhibiting various styles of architecture, and recently restored and enlarged; St. Mary Redcliff, said to have been founded in 1293, and perhaps the finest parish church in the kingdom. Among modern buildings are the exchange,[Pg 17] the guild-hall, the council house, the post office, the new grammar school, the fine arts academy, the West of England, and other banks, insurance offices, etc. The charities are exceedingly numerous, the most important being Ashley Down Orphanage, for the orphans of Protestant parents, founded and still managed by the Rev. George Müller, which may almost be described as a village of orphans. Among the educational institutions are the University College, the Theological Colleges of the Baptists and Independents, Clifton College, and the Philosophical Institute. There is a school of art, and also a public library. Bristol has glassworks, potteries, soap works, tanneries, sugar refineries, and chemical works, shipbuilding and machinery yards. Coal is worked extensively within the limits of the borough. The export and import trade is large and varied, it being one of the leading English ports in the foreign trade. Regular navigation across the Atlantic was first established here, and the Great Western, the pioneer steamship in this route, was built here. There is a harbor in the city itself, and the construction of new docks at Avonmouth and Portishead has given a fresh impetus to the port. The construction of very large new docks was begun in 1902. Bristol is one of the healthiest of the large towns of the kingdom. It has an excellent water supply chiefly obtained from the Mendip Hills.—In old Celtic chronicles we find the name Caer Oder, or "the City of the Chasm", given to a place in this neighborhood, a name peculiarly appropriate to the situation of Bristol, or rather of its suburb Clifton. The Saxons called it Bricgstow, "bridge-place". In 1373 it was constituted a county of itself by Edward III. It was made the seat of a bisphoric by Henry VIII in 1542 (now united with Gloucester). Sebastian Cabot, Chatterton, and Southey were natives of Bristol.

[Pg 18]


The Setting for an Act in a Play

Your teacher will give the word when you are to begin. She will keep track of the time and will ask you to stop reading in thirty seconds. Then she will ask you, without looking back at the paragraph, to write answers to the questions at the end.

It is a blockhouse in a Kentucky clearing, at one of the outposts of civilization to be found all along the frontier of the United States at the close of the eighteenth century. The sun is about to rise and objects are only dimly seen through the early morning haze. The building itself is at the left. It is made of rough hewn logs. A closed door of heavy planks is shown in the front wall. The windows are narrow loop-holes through which can be seen from time to time the blue barrels of flint-lock rifles. The second story of the blockhouse projects over the first, so that anyone approaching the wall would be subjected to rifle fire from the floor above. A cleared space in front contains the stumps of several large trees, behind one of which may be seen a crouching Indian, invisible to the blockhouse but easily seen by the audience. Well back and at the right is a small stream. Beyond both right and back the forest extends indefinitely. Shadowy figures are moving among the trees.

Write answers to the following questions. Remember, that if you are really a good sport and play the game fairly, you will not look back at the paragraph you have just read.

1. Does the scene show a time of danger or of peace?
2. Are people within the blockhouse?
3. What means of defense has the blockhouse?
4. What time of day is it?
5. On which side of the stage is the blockhouse? the stream?

[Pg 19]


Here is a story of a golden statue and a little bird, both of whom sacrificed a great deal for the sake of others. As you read, see if you can tell which sacrificed more, and decide whether you are sorry for them because they gave up so much.

High above the city, on a tall column, stood the statue of the Happy Prince. He was gilded all over with thin leaves of fine gold, for eyes he had two bright sapphires, and a large red ruby glowed on his sword-hilt.

One night, there flew over the city a little Swallow. His friends had gone away to Egypt six weeks before, but he had stayed behind, for he was in love with the most beautiful Reed. He had met her early in the spring as he was flying down the river after a big yellow moth, and had been so attracted by her slender waist that he had stopped to talk to her.

After the other swallows had gone he felt lonely, and began to tire of his lady-love. "She has no conversation," he said, "and I am afraid that she is a coquette, for she is always flirting with the wind." And certainly, whenever the wind blew, the Reed made the most graceful curtsies. "I admit that she is domestic," he continued, "but I love traveling, and my wife, consequently, should love traveling also."

"Will you come away with me?" he said finally to her; but the Reed shook her head, she was so attached to her home.

"You have been trifling with me," he cried. "I am off to the Pyramids. Good-bye!" and he flew away.

All day long he flew, and at night-time he arrived at the city. "Where shall I put up?" he said. "I hope the town has made preparations."

[Pg 20]

Then he saw the statue on the tall column. "I will put up there," he cried; "it is a fine position, with plenty of fresh air." So he alighted just between the feet of the Happy Prince.

"I have a golden bedroom," he said softly to himself as he looked round, and he prepared to go to sleep; but just as he was putting his head under his wing a large drop of water fell on him.

"What a curious thing!" he cried, "there is not a single cloud in the sky, the stars are quite clear and bright, and yet it is raining. The climate in the north of Europe is really dreadful. The Reed used to like the rain, but that was merely her selfishness."

Then another drop fell.

"What is the use of a statue if it cannot keep the rain off?" he said; "I must look for a good chimney-pot," and he determined to fly away.

But before he had opened his wings, a third drop fell, and he looked up, and saw—Ah! what did he see?

The eyes of the Happy Prince were filled with tears, and tears were running down his golden cheeks. His face was so beautiful in the moonlight that the little Swallow was filled with pity.

"Who are you?" he said.

"I am the Happy Prince."

"Why are you weeping then?" asked the swallow; "you have quite drenched me."

"When I was alive and had a human heart," answered the statue, "I did not know what tears were, for I lived in the Palace of Sans-Souci (without care), where sorrow is not allowed to enter. In the daytime I played with my companions in the garden, and in the evening I led the dance in the Great Hall. Round the garden ran a very lofty wall, but I never cared to ask what lay beyond it, everything about me was so beautiful. My courtiers called me the Happy Prince, and happy indeed I was, if pleasure be happiness. So I lived, and so I died. And now that I am dead they have set me up here so high that I can see all the ugliness and all the misery of my city, and though my heart is made of lead yet I cannot choose but weep."

[Pg 21] Little Swallow, Will You Not Stay with Me for One Night?

"Little Swallow, Will You Not Stay with Me for One Night?"

"What, is he not of solid gold?" said the Swallow to[Pg 22] himself. He was too polite to make any personal remarks out loud.

"Far away," continued the statue in a low musical voice, "far away in a little street there is a poor house. One of the windows is open, and through it I can see a woman seated at the table. Her face is thin and worn, and she has coarse, red hands, all pricked by the needle, for she is a seamstress. She is embroidering passion-flowers on a satin gown for the loveliest of the Queen's maids-of-honor to wear at the next Court-ball. In a bed in the corner of the room her little boy is lying ill. He has a fever, and is asking for oranges. His mother has nothing to give him but river water, so he is crying. Swallow, Swallow, little Swallow, will you not bring her the ruby out of my sword hilt? My feet are fastened to this pedestal and I cannot move."

"I am waited for in Egypt," said the Swallow. "My friends are flying up and down the Nile and talking to the large lotus-flowers. Soon they will go to sleep in the tomb of the great King. The King is there himself in his painted coffin. He is wrapped in yellow linen, and embalmed with spices. Round his neck is a chain of pale green jade, and his hands are like withered leaves."

"Swallow, Swallow, little Swallow," said the Prince, "will you not stay with me for one night, and be my[Pg 23] messenger? The boy is so thirsty and the mother is so sad."

"I don't think I like boys," answered the Swallow. "Last summer, when I was staying on the river, there were two rude boys, the miller's sons, who were always throwing stones at me. They never hit me, of course; we swallows fly far too well for that, and besides, I come of a family famous for its agility; but still, it was a mark of disrespect."

But the Happy Prince looked so sad that the little Swallow was sorry. "It is very cold here," he said; "but I will stay with you for one night, and be your messenger."

"Thank you, little Swallow," said the Prince.

So the Swallow picked out the ruby from the Prince's sword, and flew away with it in his beak over the roofs of the town.

He passed by the cathedral tower, where the white marble angels were sculptured. He passed by the palace and heard the sound of dancing. A beautiful girl came out on the balcony with her lover. "How wonderful the stars are," he said to her, "and how wonderful is the power of love!" "I hope my dress will be ready in time for the State-ball," she answered; "I have ordered passion-flowers to be embroidered on it; but the seamstresses are so lazy."

He passed over the river, and saw the lanterns hanging to the masts of the ships. At last he came to the poor house and looked in. The boy was tossing feverishly on his bed, and the mother had fallen asleep, she was so tired. In he hopped, and laid the great ruby on the table beside the woman's thimble. Then he flew gently round the bed, fanning the boy's forehead with his wings. "How cool I feel," said the boy, "I must be getting better;" and he sank into a delicious slumber.

Then the Swallow flew back to the Happy Prince, and[Pg 24] told him what he had done. "It is curious," he remarked, "but I feel quite warm now, although it is so cold."

"That is because you have done a good action," said the Prince. And the little Swallow began to think, and then fell asleep. Thinking always made him sleepy.

When day broke he flew down to the river and had a bath. "To-night I go to Egypt," he said, and he was in high spirits at the prospect. He visited all the public monuments, and sat a long time on top of the church steeple. Wherever he went sparrows chirruped, and said to each other, "What a distinguished stranger!" so he enjoyed himself very much.

When the moon rose he flew back and said to the Happy Prince: "Have you any commissions for Egypt? I am just starting."

"Swallow, Swallow, little Swallow," said the Prince, "will you not stay with me one night longer? Far away across the city I see a young man in a garret. He is leaning over a desk covered with papers, and in a tumbler by his side there is a bunch of withered violets. His hair is brown and crisp and his lips are red as a pomegranate, and he has large and dreamy eyes. He is trying to finish a play for the Director of the Theatre, but he is too cold to write any more. There is no fire in the grate, and hunger has made him faint."

"I will wait one night longer," said the Swallow, who had a good heart. "Shall I take him another ruby?"

"Alas! I have no ruby now," said the Prince; "my eyes are all that I have left. They are made of rare sapphires which were brought out of India a thousand years ago. Pluck out one of them and take it to him. He will sell it to the jeweller, and buy food and firewood, and finish his play."

[Pg 25]

"Dear Prince," said the Swallow, "I cannot do that"; and he began to weep.

"Swallow, Swallow, little Swallow," said the Prince, "do as I command you."

So the Swallow plucked out the Prince's eye, and flew away to the student's garret. It was easy enough to get in, as there was a hole in the roof. Through this he darted, and came into the room. The young man had his head buried in his hands, so he did not hear the flutter of the bird's wings, and when he looked up he found the beautiful sapphire lying on the withered violets.

"I am beginning to be appreciated," he cried; "this is from some great admirer. Now I can finish my play," and he looked quite happy.

The next day the Swallow flew down to the harbor. He sat on the mast of a large vessel and watched the sailors hauling big chests out of the hold with ropes. "I am going to Egypt!" cried the Swallow, but nobody minded, and when the moon rose he flew back to the Happy Prince.

"I am come to bid you good-bye," he cried.

"Swallow, Swallow, little Swallow," said the Prince, "will you not stay with me one night longer?"

"It is winter," answered the Swallow, "and the chill snow will soon be here. In Egypt the sun is warm on the green palm-trees, and the crocodiles lie in the mud and look lazily about them."

"In the square below," said the Happy Prince, "there stands a little match-girl. She has let her matches fall in the gutter, and they are all spoiled. Her father will beat her if she does not bring home some money, and she is crying. She has no shoes or stockings, and her little head is bare. Pluck out my other eye, and give it to her, and her father will not beat her."

[Pg 26]

"I will stay with you one night longer," said the Swallow, "but I cannot pluck out your eye. You would be quite blind then."

"Swallow, Swallow, little Swallow," said the Prince, "do as I command you."

So he plucked out the Prince's other eye, and darted down with it. He swooped past the match-girl, and slipped the jewel into the palm of her hand. "What a lovely bit of glass," cried the little girl; and she ran home laughing.

Then the Swallow came back to the Prince. "You are blind now," he said, "so I will stay with you always."

"No, little Swallow," said the poor Prince, "you must go away to Egypt."

"I will stay with you always," said the Swallow, and he slept at the Prince's feet.

Next day the Swallow flew over the great city, and saw the rich making merry in their beautiful houses, while the beggars were sitting at the gates. He flew into dark lanes, and saw the white faces of starving children looking out listlessly at the black streets. Under the archway of a bridge two little boys were lying in one another's arms to try and keep themselves warm.

Then he flew back and told the Prince what he had seen.

"I am covered with fine gold," said the Prince, "you must take it off leaf by leaf, and give it to my poor; the living always think that gold can make them happy."

Leaf after leaf of the fine gold the Swallow picked off, till the Happy Prince looked quite dull and grey. Leaf after leaf of the fine gold he brought to the poor, and the children's faces grew rosier, and they laughed and played games in the street. "We have bread now!" they cried.

Then the snow came, and after the snow came the frost. The streets looked as if they were made of silver, they[Pg 27] were so bright and glistening; long icicles like crystal daggers hung down from the eaves of the houses, everybody went about in furs, and the little boys wore scarlet caps and skated on the ice.

The poor little Swallow grew colder and colder, but he would not leave the Prince, for he loved him too well. He picked up crumbs outside the baker's door, and tried to keep himself warm by flapping his wings.

But at last he knew that he was going to die. He had just enough strength to fly up to the Prince's shoulder once more. "Good-bye, dear Prince!" he murmured, "will you let me kiss your hand?"

"I am glad that you are going to Egypt at last, little Swallow," said the Prince, "you have stayed too long here; but you must kiss me on the lips, for I love you."

"It is not to Egypt that I am going," said the Swallow. "I am going to the House of Death. Death is the brother of Sleep, is he not?"

And he kissed the Happy Prince on the lips, and fell down dead at his feet.

At that moment a curious crack sounded inside the statue as if something had broken. The fact is that the leaden heart had snapped right in two. It certainly was a dreadfully hard frost.

Early the next morning the Mayor was walking in the square below in company with the Town Councillors. As they passed the column he looked up at the statue: "Dear me! how shabby the Happy Prince looks!" he said.

"How shabby indeed!" cried the Town Councillors, who always agreed with the Mayor; and they went up to look at it.

"The ruby has fallen out of his sword, his eyes are gone,[Pg 28] and he is golden no longer," said the Mayor; "in fact he is little better than a beggar."

"Little better than a beggar," said the Town Councillors.

"And here is actually a dead bird at his feet!" continued the Mayor. "We must really issue a proclamation that birds are not to be allowed to die here." And the Town Clerk made a note of the suggestion.

So they pulled down the statue of the Happy Prince. "As he is no longer beautiful he is no longer useful," said the Art Professor at the University.

Then they melted the statue in a furnace and the Mayor held a meeting of the Corporation to decide what was to be done with the metal. "We must have another statue, of course," he said, "and it shall be a statue of myself."

"Of myself," said each of the Town Councillors, and they quarreled. When I last heard of them they were quarreling still.

"What a strange thing!" said the overseer at the foundry. "This broken lead heart will not melt in the furnace. We must throw it away." So they threw it on a dust heap where the dead swallow was also lying.

"Bring me the two most precious things in the city," said God to one of His Angels; and the Angel brought Him the leaden heart and the dead bird.

"You have rightly chosen," said God, "for in my garden of Paradise this little bird shall sing for evermore, and in my city of gold the Happy Prince shall praise me."

Oscar Wilde.    
Courtesy of Augustus R. Keller and Company

It would be too bad to mar this beautiful story by asking questions about it. This is a story to tell. Your teacher, or perhaps the class, will decide who is to come to the front of the room and tell the story. It would be a good Christmas story.

[Pg 29]


This exercise is given to see if you can follow directions. Follow each direction as you read it. Do not wait for others to start, but begin now.

1. Arrange your paper with your name on the first line and your grade on the second. At the left hand side of your paper number the next ten lines from number 1 to number 10.

2. The words name is a John boy's do not make a good sentence, but if the words are arranged in order they form a good sentence: John is a boy's name. This sentence is true. In the same way, the words books made iron of are, in this order do not make a good sentence, but arranged in the right order they form a good sentence: Books are made of iron. This sentence is not true.

3. Here are ten groups of words which can be rearranged into good sentences. When they are rearranged in their right order, some will be true and some will be false. Look at the first set of words. Do not write the words in their right order, but see what they would say if rearranged. If what they would say is true, write the word true after figure 1 on your paper; but if what they would say is not true, write the word false after figure 1. Do this with each group of words.

1. shepherd the his good sheep cares for.
2. Pigeons carry frequently used war to were messages.
3. usually elected kings for are four years.
4. from get caterpillar we called a silk-worm the silk.
5. live the far-away Eskimos sandy hot in deserts the.
6. and coal mined the cotton south are in.
7. sail Spain three set Columbus from great steamships with.
8. chief of England the city Philadelphia is.
9. our days long summer and hot are.
10. noted California trees is big its for.

[Pg 30]


You should all begin reading at the same moment. Your teacher will time you and tell you how long it takes you to read this selection. But do not hurry, for you will be asked to tell the class the things you remember best.

Maybe you had a big brother or sister or cousin or aunt or uncle who, during the great war, worked under the Red Cross in France. If you did, he or she may have written home just such letters as this one, which a big sister wrote to her little brothers in America. As you read, see if you do not think she must be a very pleasant, friendly big sister, not only to her own little brothers, but also to the little French children.

Do you wish you had been born in France and that your names were Jean, and René, and Etienne instead of Bill and George Albert and Ben? And do you wish you wore black sateen aprons instead of woolly blue sweaters?

The reason I began to write you this letter is that yesterday afternoon I put on my hat and coat when I ought to have been working, and went to visit some French schools. I went with twenty fine people who all wore Red Cross uniforms.

The reason I went is very interesting. For three years, while all the men and the big boys in France have been fighting, their mothers and sisters and all the children whom they had to leave behind them have been getting poorer and thinner and hungrier. You see, since the men have gone to war there haven't been enough of them left to grow the wheat and run the machinery which makes the bread. Well, as I said, the mothers and the little children got thinner and poorer and hungrier, but the last thing of all that they gave up was a luncheon they served in the afternoon in the schools to the smallest and poorest children. It was such a little luncheon that they called it "the taste",[Pg 31] but finally they had to give up even that; and then when the time came to eat, the children, who were just as brave as soldiers, had to pretend they weren't hungry at all. They went without that luncheon for a number of months, and then an American doctor decided that the boys and girls in that part of Paris must have that luncheon again. So the doctor rented a bakeshop and he got a ton of nice white American flour, and hundreds and hundreds of cans of American condensed milk, and a very great deal of sugar and some other things, and went to work making buns. And the reason I went to the schools yesterday was to help give out the buns and chocolate for the children's "taste".

I suppose you think that one bun and one piece of chocolate wasn't much—and we thought so too when we saw all those hungry little faces, and their little legs that looked quite hollow—but the children thought it was fine. They were so polite, boys! When we marched into their classrooms they all stood up and saluted us as if they had been soldiers. They showed us their copy books and told us what the lesson was. In one class the master himself was quite scared because he wanted to speak English to make us feel at home. But he made us a fine speech, saying how thankful they all were to their American friends for being so generous to them. He thanked us especially for thinking of the children and for trying to help them when their fathers were away fighting. Then he asked the boys whose fathers or brothers were in the war to raise their hands, and, do you know, almost every boy could raise his hand. They were proud to do it, too. Their hands went up quickly and some of them waved—as you do when you especially want the teacher to pay attention to you. The master asked the boys whose fathers would never come back to raise their hands, and there[Pg 32] were so many of them that we could hardly bear to count them; and this time the hands went up very slowly and their faces were very, very sober.

In the first school we went to, the big hall was decorated with a long string of American flags. Every one was drawn very carefully, and then colored with crayons by the littlest children. There were paper chains, too, made out of red, white, and blue paper; and finally, when the buns came in, the baskets were all decorated with the American flag because the American people had given the bread.

The boys all marched into the hall in a long, long line, and, Bill and Junior and Ben, I was so afraid that there wouldn't be enough buns to go around! They marched up to the baskets, their little wooden shoes making a terrible clatter on the stone floor; and every boy got a bun in one hand and a bar of chocolate in the other, and every boy said "Thank you" in French, very politely. I don't think even the smallest forgot that, though some of them were so excited that they couldn't march straight and some of them couldn't talk at all plainly, even in French. There was one time when I got very much excited myself. That was when one little boy, in a blue soldier suit just like his father's, said "Thank you" in English. I nearly dropped all the buns I had in my two hands, I was so surprised.

The Mayor of the district, who probably seemed like the President of the United States to most of the children, made a speech and told them how sorry the Americans had been that they couldn't have their lunch in the afternoon, and how the Americans wanted them to be strong and well and happy and had given them the buns and the chocolate to help, and he talked to them in such a pleasant voice and in such a loving sort of way, that when he said he wanted them to shout, "Vive l'Amerique!" which means, "Hurrah for[Pg 33] the United States of America!" they shouted—really and truly shouted—just as if they'd been little American boys.

At the next school, we went to the building where the tiniest children of all learned their kindergarten games. They marched for us, and sang a little song about the good "Saint Christopher", who was kind to little children; and a little boy who had lost his mother and father in the war and who was really too little to understand, said a very polite speech to us and promised us that he and his little friends would always remember how kind the Americans had been to them. He was so tiny that he hid his head in the teacher's apron when he had finished.

Finally we went to the biggest school of all, and there we found a great hall filled with classes of little girls, all dressed in black, all looking so pale and thin and sad that we were glad to think that perhaps the buns and chocolates we had brought would—in a month or two—bring some color into their poor little faces, and perhaps even put some fat on their wrists and hands that were so thin they seemed like birds' claws. One of the older girls had made a fine big panel picture here showing the children eating their buns and chocolates and capering up and down just as I've seen somebody caper a bit when he was going to have—was it ice cream for Sunday dinner?

At the end, the nice old Mayor made another speech, in which he told us a little bit of how brave the children had been when they were hungry, and how glad he was that they were now going to have the American food, and then he thanked us all over again. So, then, one of the American doctors said that when we came over here to France with our men, our food, and our love, we weren't making gifts, we were just trying to pay the debt that America had owed to France since Lafayette and his men came across the sea[Pg 34] to help us in our war. Then the doctor told us how the Arabs believe that people who once eat even a tiny piece of bread together will always be friends, so the little children and their teachers, and the nice old Mayor, and all the Americans from the Red Cross ate some of the American buns and—that is the end of the story!

—"National School Service".


Here is part of a letter written by a nine-year-old French girl to girls of the William Penn High School, Philadelphia, who had "adopted" her as their "war orphan". After you read it, tell what kind of little girl you think she is.

Dear Sisters: I have just received your letter. I am much touched by your kindness to me, and for your generous hearts. I am contented to find among you so many devoted new sisters for the poor orphan of this unfortunate war, which has killed all our fathers. Dear Sisters, I don't want you to see a like war with you, for it is too frightful and too sad. I shall not speak any more about it; that gives too much trouble.

You ask me of what I have the greatest need; indeed, that will be a dress if that is possible for you; for mamma does not want us to abuse your good hearts. The dress, I should like to see it dark blue, for up to now I have always worn black and white. Mamma permits me now to wear blue, and I think that will be becoming.

Mamma has made little economies of money. She is going to have my photograph taken, and I am going to send them. I think that will give you pleasure, and I will write to you often. I do not forget you in my morning and evening prayers. Once again, thanks, all these sisters whom I do not know. But if I have the good fortune to grow up, I will see you all with pleasure.

[Pg 35]


If you have a strong imagination and have read and have liked your geography and, perhaps, some books of travel, you will enjoy this poem. As you read see how many different places are hinted at. Read the poem through; close your book, and make a list of all you can remember.

I should like to rise and go
Where the golden apples grow;—
Where below another sky
Parrot islands anchored lie,
And, watched by cockatoos and goats,
Lonely Crusoes building boats;—
Where in sunshine reaching out
Eastern cities, miles about,
Are with mosque and minaret
Among sandy gardens set,
And the rich goods from near and far
Hang for sale in the bazaar;—
Where the Great Wall round China goes,
And on one side the desert blows,
And with bell and voice and drum,
Cities on the other hum;—
Where are forests, hot as fire,
Wide as England, tall as a spire,
Full of apes and cocoanuts
And the negro hunters' huts;—
Where the knotty crocodile
Lies and blinks in the Nile,
And the red flamingo flies
Hunting fish before his eyes;—
Where in jungles, near and far,
[Pg 36] Man-devouring tigers are,
Lying close and giving ear
Lest the hunt be drawing near,
Or a comer-by be seen
Swinging in a palanquin;—
Where among the desert sands
Some deserted city stands,
All its children, sweep and prince,
Grown to manhood ages since,
Not a foot in street or house,
Not a stir of child or mouse,
And when kindly falls the night,
In all the town no spark of light.
There I'll come when I'm a man
With a camel caravan;
Light a fire in the gloom
Of some dusky dining room;
See the pictures on the walls,
Heroes, fights, and festivals;
And in a corner find the toys
Of the old Egyptian boys.
Robert Louis Stevenson.


Not every child who plans how some day he is going to travel has a chance to carry out his plans. But Robert Louis Stevenson travelled far enough to see nearly all the places he dreamed of. He did not travel just for pleasure, however; his health was so poor that he wandered all over the world to find a climate where he could live. The place he found was an island in the Southern Pacific, one of a group called Samoa, where he spent all the last years of his life. Stevenson was a man who made friends wherever he went. In Samoa the natives loved him dearly. Their name for him was Tusitala, "the Teller of Tales," because he wrote such wonderful stories.

[Pg 37]


Read the following rules through once; then cover the page with a sheet of paper, and answer the questions.

1. When reading, writing, or doing other close work, be sure to have good, clear light, preferably over the left shoulder if writing, and not directly in the eyes nor reflected sharply from the paper.

2. Do not hold your work less than 12 inches from your eyes.

3. Do not use the eyes too long continuously—rest them a few minutes occasionally by closing them or by looking into the distance to relax them. One should do this at least every hour, especially if reading fine type or doing intense, delicate work.

4. Keep away from places where stone chips, sparks, or emery dust is flying. If you have to work where such dangers exist, wear goggles.

5. If strong light bothers you, wear slightly brown non-magnifying glasses outdoors, with a broad-brimmed hat.

6. Avoid the common towel and do not rub the eyes with dirty hands. Contagious eye disease is spread in these two ways.


1. Give two rules about the right use of light for reading, writing, etc.

2. How far from your eyes should you hold your book?

3. Give the rule for resting the eyes.

4. How can you avoid danger from sparks, emery dust and stone chips?

5. What should you do if strong light bothers you?

6. Why should you not use a dirty towel or rub your eyes with dirty hands?

[Pg 38]


Would you like to go behind the screen and see a great film produced—to see the hundreds of men and women and horses and costumes and properties that are necessary to produce a thrilling story? Would you like to take a part in the picture, and dress up in one of the costumes, and ride before the clicking cameras?

See whether you can take one of these brief scenes and, by reading carefully all that the paragraph tells you, picture it before the class so vividly that the class will know which scene you are reproducing. That is what the actor must do every time a film is produced. You may take anything in the room that will help you in making the picture true to the story. You must remember that your success depends upon how well you can express your thought and feeling through your face and hands and body.

1. He sat on the bank eagerly watching every little ripple on the water and Jack sat beside him, not understanding the game at all nor why his master should have become so lazy. Suddenly, Tom jumped up and, pulling in the line with a jerk, danced wildly about, while Jack, now as excited as his master, barked furiously at the tiny wiggles on the end of the line.

2. Suddenly he drew in his horse and listened anxiously—was that the far off rumble of guns? Could the battle have begun?

3. Lawrence counted the change in his hand carefully, wondering whether the amount he held was just enough or just too little. Every now and then he glanced up anxiously, just to make sure that the price-tag in the window was still $4.50 and that the cost of the football had not in some miraculous manner grown to $14.50.

[Pg 39]

4. The king's wise men and learned doctors brought down great books in which were written all the laws of the kingdom. They traced through long pages with trembling fingers and anxious, frowning eyes. At the end of each page they would shake their heads and mutter among themselves, and as they closed the last ponderous volume they approached the king with many gestures of despair. "We cannot find an answer written in all the Books of the Kingdom, your majesty."

5. I saw some one drawing slowly near along the road. He was plainly blind, for he tapped before him with a stick, and wore a great green shade over his eyes and nose; and he was hunched, as if with age or weakness, and wore a large, old, tattered sea-cloak with a hood, that made him appear positively deformed. I never saw a more dreadful looking figure. He stopped a little from the inn, and raising his voice in an odd sing-song, addressed the air in front of him.

6. Jerry knew that his life would hang in the balance for the next few minutes, but he hoped that by hugging close to the shadows of the wall, and by not making a sound, he could pass by the careless group around the fire. He crouched down in despair when one of the men turned and apparently looked accusingly at his particular shadow on the wall. But the man made no sign and Jerry crept on.

7. One day on their daily rounds they found a disagreeable surprise awaiting them at the lake. Their beaver traps were all sprung and were all empty. There was a light snow on the ground and they stooped to examine the signs left by the thief in his hurry. An unmistakable trail led off down the river and they followed it eagerly until a shift in the wind brought more snow and the tracks were covered.

[Pg 40]


The following problems are to be answered without the use of figures. Read each problem carefully and decide whether your answer should be yes or no. Each question requires one or the other of these words; no other answer will be counted correct. Put the answer to the first question on the first line, and in the margin of the paper, mark it number 1. Use a separate line for each problem and be sure to number your answer to correspond. If you are not sure of the answer, guess at it and pass on to the next problem. When you have finished, sign your name and grade at the bottom of the paper, and wait quietly for the others.

1. It took George thirty-one seconds to read these directions carefully. John read them in twenty-seven seconds. Can George read faster than John?

2. Mary was born in February, 1910. Her cousin, Marion, is four months older. Was Marion born in 1910?

3. John went with his two brothers to the park. One brother spent twenty-five cents, the other spent thirty cents. John spent more than these two together. In all did they spend more than one dollar?

4. When flour sells at eight cents per pound, I can get a barrel for twelve dollars. A barrel of flour weighs almost two hundred pounds. Would I save more than a dollar by purchasing flour by the barrel?

5. My father bought a talking-machine for sixty-five dollars, and a dozen records for twenty-five dollars more. Will a hundred dollar bill pay for both?

6. The regulation boy-scout pace calls for a mile in twelve minutes. Could a good scout cover four miles in an hour?

7. Coffee grows only in tropical countries. Do you think we import much from Alaska?

[Pg 41]


This little play gives you a chance to pretend that you are a star actor or actress; for the central character, Young America, is you.

In order to succeed in a land of equal chance, Young America will need four things. Find what they are. Can you tell how each thing will help him?

Time: January, 19—. Place: At the edge of the land. On either side of the stage there are two small curtained windows. At the centre of the stage, back, are two long steps leading to a dark, closed curtain. Enter from one side Father Time, from the other Mother Space.

Father Time.—Happy New Year, Mother Space! What do you carry so carefully?

Mother Space.—Shall I let you see? (Unrolls her large map.) See, a land of rocks and rills, of woods and templed hills. Here are the broad prairies, here the great mountains full of treasure, and down here the sweet, warm southern fields.

F. T. (Looks at the unrolled scroll.)—That seems to be a map of the United States.

M. S.—Most people call it that. I call it the Land-of-Equal-Chance.

F. T.—An excellent name!

M. S.—By all the fields, mountains, cities and prairies, what sort of child do you think should live here?

F. T.—Leave that to me. (Calls.) Come, Young America. (Calls again and again. At last Young America dressed as a boy scout, pack on back, enters cautiously.)

F. T.—Come, Young America, Mother Space gives you this chart to the Land-of-Equal-Chance. Go, the land lies beyond. It is your domain.

[Pg 42]

Young America (bewildered).—But what shall I do there? Must I go alone?

F. T.—No, my child, you cannot go alone. Do you see these four windows? Go, draw aside the curtains.

Y. A. (Goes to the first window and draws aside the curtain. Above the window is plainly printed "Action".)—Here am I, Young America. I must go on a journey. Will you go with me, Spirit of Action?

Spirit of Action (Appears suddenly at the window.)—Go? Yes. Wait a moment. (Bounds to the stage.) Where are you going?

Y. A. (Points to the curtain at rear.)—There, Spirit of Action. What will you do if you go with me?

Sp. of A. (Laughs.)—I shall make your blood dance and your heart beat high. I shall fill your hands with glorious work. Your muscles shall be strong with the doing.

Y. A.—O, Spirit of Action, you make me want to start at once. I could not do without you. But, wait. (Goes to the second window, draws the curtain back to see the word "Understanding".) Come, friend Understanding.

Spirit of Understanding.—Here am I, Young America.

Y. A.—I am going away, Understanding.

Sp. of U.—So! Why do you go?

Y. A.—I want to go. I do not know exactly why.

Sp. of U. (Comes on the stage.)—Then you do need me, Young America. I will make your eye clear, and your mind aware. If I go with you, you must think. Will you?

Y. A.—Thinking is hard, but I promise if you show me how. Now, for my next friend. (Goes to the third window, draws back the curtain and sees, "Self-Control".) Ho, Self-Control, it is I, Young America! Come, go with me!

Spirit of Self-Control.—Not so fast! Steady, Young America. Go with you?

[Pg 43]

Y. A.—Yes, on a journey.

Sp. of S-C.—If I go with you I must have a big promise.

Y. A.—What?

Sp. of S-C.—You must play the game of life with fair rules—the same rules for all.

Y. A.—Yes.

Sp. of S-C.—And you must help make the rules.

Y. A.—Yes.

Sp. of S-C.—And the hardest of all, you must obey the rules yourself.

Y. A.—I'll try, Self-Control. (Self-Control joins the others on the stage. Y. A. draws aside the curtain from the fourth window, marked "Sympathy".)

Y. A.—Come, friend, Young America is going on a journey.

Spirit of Sympathy (Appears.)—A journey? Who goes with you?

Y. A.—Self-Control, Understanding, and Action.

Sp. of S.—You need more than they can give.

Y. A.—What more do I need?

Sp. of S.—Why, don't you see, you have no one to make you feel for others in the game. You can't play or work alone. You must join hands and pull together. (Comes out from the window.) Take my hand.

Y. A. (wonderingly).—Your hand is soft and warm, Spirit of Sympathy. I should like to have you go.

Sp. of A.—Hurry, come, we must be gone. Sit here, Young America, let me put these sandals on your feet. There.

Y. A.—They fit so well, Spirit. And see, wings! Ah, sandals with wings!

Sp. of U.—Sometimes it will be dark. Keep this torch burning. (She lights the torch and hands it to the boy.)

Y. A.—How bright it makes the way.

[Pg 44]

Sp. of S-C.—There will be rugged heights to climb in that land, dark abysses into which you might fall. Take this staff. My strength is in it. If wild beasts attack you, defend yourself. Be steady, steady.

Y. A.—A staff! How strong it is!

Sp. of S. (A long garland of flowers trails from her hands. She winds them about Young America and the three other spirits. Then she takes Young America's hand.)—Come, we go as one to the Land-of-Equal-Chance. (The group, bound by their flower chain, moves up the steps towards the curtain.)

Sp. of A. (Springs ahead but holds to the chain.)—Open, open! Young America is here!

All.—Open, open for Young America!

(Father Time and Mother Space, who have been standing aside, take their places at the large curtain and after a pause slowly lift it, revealing the figure of Liberty bathed in shining light. Young America starts back.)

Liberty.—Come, Young America!

Y. A. (Aside to companions.)—Dare I go?

All the Spirits.—We will go with you.

Liberty.—Come, Young America!

(Young America advances slowly towards the outstretched arms of Liberty and kneels. The Spirits follow forming a group which says, "Onward into the Land-of-Equal-Chance".)

—"National School Service."


Each of Young America's companions gave him a present. What were the presents? Was each a suitable gift to come from its giver? Of what use will each gift be?

Do you think Young America would be likely to succeed with only three of these companions? If so, which one do you think he can spare?

[Pg 45] Come, Young America!

"Come, Young America!"

[Pg 46]


Is this a real, live boy who tells this story? He did two things, a bad one and a good one. You probably would not have done the bad one. Try to think out for yourself, not to answer the question to your teacher or class, whether or not you would have done the good one.


My father was seated on the lawn before the house, his straw hat over his eyes, and his book on his lap. Suddenly a beautiful delft blue-and-white flower-pot, which had been set on the window-sill of an upper story, fell to the ground with a crash, and the fragments flew up round my father's feet. But my father continued to read.

"Dear, dear!" cried my mother, who was at work in the porch; "my poor flower-pot, that I prized so much! I would rather the best tea-set were broken! The poor geranium I reared myself, and the dear, dear flower-pot which Mr. Caxton bought for me my last birthday! That naughty child must have done this!"

I came out of the house as bold as brass, and said rapidly, "Yes, mother, it was I who pushed out the flower-pot."

"Hush!" said my nurse, while gazing at my father, who had very slowly taken off his hat, and was looking on with serious, wide-awake eyes. "Hush! And if he did break it, ma'am, it was quite an accident. He was standing so, and he never meant it. Did you? Speak!" this in a whisper, "or father will be so very angry."

"Well," said mother, "I suppose it was an accident; take care in the future, my child. You are sorry, I see, to have grieved me. There is a kiss; don't fret."

"No, mother, you must not kiss me; I don't deserve it, I pushed out the flower-pot on purpose."

[Pg 47]

"Ah! and why?" said my father, walking up.

"For fun!" said I, hanging my head; "just to see how you'd look, father; and that's the truth of it."

My father threw his book fifty feet off, stooped down, and caught me in his arms. "Boy," he said, "you have done wrong; you shall repair it by remembering all your life that your father blessed God for giving him a son who spoke truth in spite of fear."


Not long after, Mr. Squills gave me a beautiful large box of dominoes, made of cut ivory. This domino box was my delight. I was never tired of playing at dominoes with my old nurse, and I slept with the box under my pillow.

"Ah!" said my father one day when he found me arranging the ivory pieces in the parlor, "do you like that better than all your playthings?"

"Oh, yes, father!"

"You would be very sorry if mother were to throw that box out of the window and break it, for fun." I looked pleadingly at my father, and made no answer. "But perhaps you would be very glad," he went on, "if suddenly one of those good fairies you read of could change the domino box into a beautiful geranium in a lovely blue-and-white flower-pot. Then you could have the pleasure of putting it on mother's window-sill."

"Indeed I would," said I, half crying.

"My dear boy, I believe you; but good wishes do not mend bad actions; good actions mend bad actions." So saying he shut the door and went out.

"My boy," said he the next day, "I am going to walk to town; will you come? And, by the by, fetch your domino box; I should like to show it to a person there."

[Pg 48]

"Father," said I by the way, "there are no fairies now how then can my domino box be changed into a geranium in a blue-and-white flower-pot?"

"My dear," said my father, leaning his hand on my shoulder, "everybody who is in earnest to be good, carries two fairies about with him—one here," and he touched my forehead, "and one there," and he touched my heart.

"I don't understand, father."

"I can wait until you do, my son."

My father stopped at a nursery-gardener's, and after looking over the flowers, paused before a large geranium. "Ah, this is finer than that which your mother was so fond of. What is the price of this, sir?"

"Only seven and six pence," said the gardener. My father buttoned up his pocket.

"I can't afford it to-day," said he gently, and we walked out.


On entering the town we stopped again at a china warehouse. "Have you a flower-pot like that I bought some months ago? Ah, here is one, marked three and six pence. Yes, that is the price. Well, when mother's birthday comes again, we must buy her another. That is some months to wait. And we can wait, my boy. For truth, that blooms all the year round, is better than a poor geranium; and a word that is never broken is better than a piece of delft."

My head, which had been drooping before, rose again; but the rush of joy at my heart almost stifled me. "I have called to pay your bill," said my father, entering a shop.

"And, by the by," he added, "my boy can show you a beautiful domino box." I produced my treasure, and the shopman praised it highly. "It is always well, my boy, to know what a thing is worth, in case one wishes to part with it. If my son gets tired of his plaything, what will you give him for it?"

[Pg 49] My Father Stopped at a Nursery-Gardener's

My Father Stopped at a Nursery-Gardener's

"Why, sir," said the shopman; "I think we could give[Pg 50] eighteen shillings for it."

"Eighteen shillings!" said my father; "you would give that? Well, my boy, whenever you do grow tired of your box, you have my leave to sell it."

My father paid his bill, and went out. I lingered behind a few moments, and joined him at the end of the street.

"Father, father!" I cried, clapping my hands, "we can buy the geranium; we can buy the flower-pot!" And I pulled a handful of silver from my pocket.

"Did I not say right?" said my father. "You have found the two fairies!"

Ah, how proud, how overjoyed I was, when after placing vase and flower on the window-sill, I plucked my mother by the gown, and made her follow me to the spot.

"It is his doing and his money!" said my father; "good actions have mended the bad."

From "The Caxtons", by Bulwer-Lytton.

1. What did the boy do when he "lingered behind a few moments"?

2. If you were to act out this story, you would have to imagine yourself in several places. Make a list of them in the right order.

3. What do you think "seven-and-sixpence" means? How much money do you think the boy had left when he had paid for the flower-pot?

4. What do you think the two fairies were?

5. This selection is divided into three parts, each headed with a Roman numeral. Write a heading or topic for each part.

[Pg 51]


Here is the story of the greatest deed of the patron, or guardian, saint of England. As you read the story, try to remember how the young men of England, France, and America showed themselves worthy followers of this brave, noble knight.

Long ago, when the knights lived in the land, there was one knight whose name was Sir George. He was not only braver than all the rest, but he was so noble, kind, and good that the people came to call him Saint George.

No robbers ever dared to trouble the people who lived near his castle, and all the wild animals were killed or driven away, so the little children could play even in the woods without being afraid.

One day St. George rode throughout the country. Everywhere he saw the men busy at their work in the fields, the women singing at work in their homes, and the little children shouting at their play.

"These people are all safe and happy; they need me no more," said St. George. "But somewhere perhaps there is trouble and fear. There may be some place where little children cannot play in safety; some woman may have been carried away from her home; perhaps there are even dragons left to be slain. Tomorrow I shall ride away and never stop until I find work which only a knight can do."

Early the next morning St. George put on his helmet and all his shining armor, and fastened his sword at his side. Then he mounted his great black horse and rode out from his castle gate. Down the steep, rough road he went, sitting straight and tall, and looking brave and strong as a knight should look. On through the little village at the foot of the hill and out across the country he rode. Everywhere[Pg 52] he saw rich fields filled with waving grain; everywhere there was peace and plenty.

He rode on and on until at last he came into a part of the country he had never seen before. He noticed that there were no men working in the fields. The houses which he passed stood silent and empty. The grass along the roadside was scorched as if a fire had passed over it. A field of wheat was all trampled and burned.

St. George drew up his horse, and looked carefully about him. Everywhere there was silence and desolation. "What can be the dreadful thing which has driven all the people from their homes? I must find out, and give them help if I can," he said. But there was no one to ask, so St. George rode forward until at last, far in the distance, he saw the walls of a city. "Here surely I shall find some one who can tell me the cause of all this," he said, so he rode more swiftly toward the city.

Just then the great gate opened and St. George saw crowds of people standing inside the wall. Some of them were weeping; all of them seemed afraid. As St. George watched, he saw a beautiful maiden dressed in white, with a girdle of scarlet about her waist, pass through the gate alone. The gate clanged shut, and the maiden walked along the road, weeping bitterly. She did not see St. George, who was riding quickly towards her.

"Maiden, why do you weep?" he asked as he reached her side.

She looked up at St. George sitting there on his horse, so straight and tall and beautiful. "Oh, Sir Knight!" she cried, "ride quickly from this place. You know not the danger you are in!"

"Danger!" said St. George; "do you think a knight would flee from danger? Besides, you, a fair, weak girl, are here alone. Think you a knight would leave you or any woman so? Tell me your trouble that I may help you."

[Pg 53] St. George Saw the Head of the Dragon Lifted from the Pool

St. George Saw the Head of the Dragon Lifted from the Pool

"No! No!" she cried. "Hasten away. You would[Pg 54] only lose your life. There is a terrible dragon near. He may come at any moment. One breath would destroy you if he found you here. Go! Go quickly!"

"Tell me more of this," said St. George sternly. "Why are you here alone to meet this dragon? Are there no men left in yon city?"

"Oh," said the maiden, "my father, the king, is old and feeble. He has only me to help him take care of his people. This terrible dragon has driven them from their homes, carried away their cattle, and ruined their crops. They have all come within the walls of the city for safety. For weeks now the dragon has come to the very gates of the city. We have been forced to give him two sheep each day for his breakfast.

"Yesterday there were no sheep left to give, so he said that unless a young maiden were given him today he would break down the walls and destroy the city. The people cried to my father to save them, but he could do nothing. I am going to give myself to the dragon. Perhaps if he has me, the Princess, he may spare our people."

"Lead the way, brave Princess. Show me where this monster may be found."

When the Princess saw St. George's flashing eyes and great, strong arm as he drew forth his sword, she felt afraid no more. Turning, she led the way to a shining pool.

"There's where he stays," she whispered. "See, the water moves. He is waking."

St. George saw the head of the dragon lifted from the pool. Fold on fold he rose from the water. When he saw[Pg 55] St. George he gave a roar of rage and plunged toward him. The smoke and flames flew from his nostrils, and he opened his great jaws as if to swallow both the knight and his horse.

St. George shouted and, waving his sword above his head, rode at the dragon. Quick and hard came the blows from St. George's sword. It was a terrible battle.

At last the dragon was wounded. He roared with pain and plunged at St. George, opening his great mouth close to the brave Knight's head.

St. George looked carefully, then struck with all his strength straight down through the dragon's throat, and he fell at the horse's feet—dead.

Then St. George shouted for joy at his victory. He called to the Princess. She came and stood beside him.

"Give me the girdle from about your waist, O Princess," said St. George.

The Princess gave him her girdle and St. George bound it around the dragon's neck, and they pulled the dragon after them by that little silken ribbon back to the city so that all of the people could see that the dragon could never harm them again.

When they saw St. George bringing the Princess back in safety and knew that the dragon was slain, they threw open the gates of the city and sent up great shouts of joy. The King heard them and came out from his palace to see why the people were shouting. When he saw his daughter safe he was the happiest of them all. "O brave Knight," he said, "I am old and weak. Stay here and help me guard my people from harm."

"I'll stay as long as ever you have need of me," St. George answered. So he lived in the palace and helped the old King take care of his people, and when the old King[Pg 56] died, St. George was made King in his stead. The people felt happy and safe so long as they had such a brave and good man for their King.

From "Stories for Children and How to Tell Them".    
Courtesy of J. Berg Esenwein.


1. Why did St. George feel that he ought to ride away from his home? What do you conclude from this must have been the chief duty of a knight?

2. What signs did St. George find that he had come to a place where there was work for him to do?

3. For what do you admire the Princess? Which do you think was braver, St. George or she?

4. What nation recently played the part of the dragon in the world? What form of government did this nation have?

5. What nations played the part of St. George? In what way did the governments of all but one of these nations differ from the "dragon" nation?


This is just a little nonsense test but don't be too sure that you can get everything in it exactly right. Carry out the following directions very carefully.

No matter whether Benjamin Franklin was the father of his country or not, draw a circle in the center of your paper. Now if December is the first month of the year put the largest of these four numbers in the circle. (17-6-11-21). But if not, put any one of the smaller numbers there. Then copy this example on your paper under the circle. (7 + 5 = .) Write a wrong answer to it, mark it correct and sign your name at the bottom.

[Pg 57]


Arrange your paper with your name on the first line at the right, and your grade below it on the second line. Skip the third line, but on the next eight lines, in the margin, write the figures, 1 to 8.

Here is an exercise that will let you see not only how well you can follow printed directions, but also how well you can arrange words in classes or groups. Read the first group of words at the bottom of the page. What kind of list does it seem to be? A list of several kinds of fruit, does it not? Or at least it would be a good list of fruit, if we could omit the word rope, which does not seem to belong to the list at all. After figure 1, on your paper, write the word rope.

In each of the other groups there is also a word that should be dropped out. You are going to write these words on your paper. Start with the next group, and when you find the word that should be omitted, write it after figure 2; and in the same way, finish the remaining groups in the exercise. When you finish wait quietly for the others to do so.

1. 2. 3. 4. 5.
apple lion mountain lumbering automobile
peach tiger gulfs farming store
rope elephant hills grazing bank
grape tusks plain manufacturing station
pear horse valley jumping hotel
orange cow island fishing church
  6. 7. 8.  
  flowers cup chair  
  grass saucer table  
  fence plate room  
  tree pan sofa  
  bush pitcher bench  
  weeds bowl bookcase  

[Pg 58]


You should all begin to read this story at the same moment.

At the end of five minutes you will be asked to close your books and follow your teacher's directions.

Very often the things that a boy or girl likes to do as a child are signs of what he or she will like to do as a man or woman. This is true in the case of Theodore Roosevelt. One of the subjects in which he was all his life most interested was his favorite study as a boy. It seems that he was not an unusually clever student in his early years. In Latin and Greek and mathematics he was poor; in science and history and geography he made better progress; but best of all he loved natural history—the study of animals.

His first experience in this study befell him when he was nine years old. He was walking past one of the city markets one day, when he saw a dead seal lying on a slab of wood. He had just been reading about seals, and it seemed a wonderful thing to see a real one. He became possessed with a longing to own the seal. Being unable to form any plan for satisfying that longing, he contented himself with visiting the market day by day to gaze upon the object which proved so interesting to him. He took the seal's measurements carefully with a folding pocket rule and had considerable difficulty when he came to measuring its girth. Somehow or other he got the animal's skull, and with it he and two of his cousins immediately founded what they called the "Roosevelt Museum of Natural History". At the same time his observations of the seal and the measurements which he had made of it were carefully set down in a blank book.

In another blank book were recorded further observations in natural history. This work was entitled, "Natural[Pg 59] History on Insects, by Theodore Roosevelt, Jr.," and began in this fashion: "All these insects are native of North America. Most of the insects are not in other books. I will write about ants first."

The beginning of the treatise on ants is entertaining, if not deeply scientific. "Ants," he writes, "are difided into three sorts for every species. These kinds are officer, soilder [soldier?] and worker. There are about one officer to ten soilders and one soilder to two workers." The book then went on to describe other insects which he had observed, all of which he assured the reader "inhabit North America". At the end of the volume on insects were a few notes on fishes. Among these was a description of the crayfish. "I need not describe the form of the crayfish to you," wrote the young author; "look at the lobster and you have its form." These observations, recorded at the age of nine years, are worth mentioning because they show a real interest in the creatures of which he was writing.

When Theodore was thirteen, his father sent him to a little shop to take lessons in taxidermy, the stuffing and mounting of animals. Then the boy wanted to secure his own specimens; so his father gave him a gun for that purpose. When he first tried to use this gun, he was puzzled to find that he could not see the objects at which his companions were shooting. One day some boys with him read aloud an advertisement written in huge letters on a billboard some distance away, and Theodore then realized, for the first time, that there must be something the matter with his eyes because he could not see the letters. His father soon got him a pair of spectacles, which, he says, opened up a new world to him.

When he was fourteen the family went to Europe, and, among other expeditions, took a trip up the Nile. Before[Pg 60] they started on this trip. Theodore picked up in Cairo a book which contained some account of the birds of that region. Armed with this book and with the gun which his father had given him, he secured a number of specimens of birds in Egypt.

Unfortunately for the rest of the family, Theodore insisted on carrying his natural history specimens about with him from place to place. One day when the family was in Vienna, his brother Elliot inquired plaintively of their father whether it would be possible that he should now and then have a room to himself in the hotels, instead of being obliged always to share one with Theodore. Mr. Roosevelt was perfectly willing to comply, but inquired the reason for Elliot's request. Elliot said, "Come and see our room, and you will understand." When they reached the boys' room, they found bottles of taxidermist's supplies everywhere, and in the basin the remains of specimens which Theodore had lately captured. Theodore himself records the fact that he was "grubby". "I suppose," he says, "that all growing boys tend to be grubby; but the small boy with the taste for natural history is generally the very grubbiest of all."

Adapted from "The Life of Theodore Roosevelt,"    
by William Draper Lewis.          
Courtesy of The John C. Winston Co.


Your teacher will call on you to come to the front of your class and tell about one of the following topics:

1. Roosevelt and the seal.

2. Roosevelt's eyesight.

3. His trip up the Nile.

4. That Roosevelt boy as a room-mate.

[Pg 61]


Probably you think you can tell all about a chimney, but you may be able to learn something interesting from this selection.

You should all begin reading at the same time. Your teacher will give the signal when to close your books. She will then ask you to write answers to the questions at the end.

A hollow tree was the first chimney of our unlettered forefathers. Accidentally set on fire, this tree illustrated the principle upon which all chimneys have been constructed. It showed that warm air, being lighter than cold air, tends to rise. When this warm air is confined within an enclosure open at the top and bottom, a strong upward current fills the space. As the warm air rises, the cold air rushes in through the opening at the bottom of the shaft, and in this way a draft is created which supplies the fire at the foot of the chimney with the oxygen it needs to support combustion.

Simple chimneys are constructed of logs and mortar, or of stones and mortar, such as those built for log cabins; of brick, also of cement and of iron pipes made for the purpose. Since a long column of hot air produces a stronger current than a short one, the tallest chimneys, other things being equal, produce the strongest draft. Tall chimneys are larger at the base than at the top. This is to make the structure stable and to increase the draft by contracting the flue at the top. At the bottom the chimney is usually connected with the fire by a flue. A fireplace, however, is practically an enlarged part of the chimney.

The size and height of a chimney depend upon the size of the furnace. For larger furnaces there is greater danger[Pg 62] of making the flue too small than too large. The stacks or chimneys of the largest steamships like the Mauritania and the Imperator are so large that two railway trains could run through them abreast, and they are about 175 feet in length. The difference between a chimney and a smokestack is in name only; chimneys constructed of tubing made from iron plates are usually called stacks.

From "The World Book".    
Courtesy of W. F. Quarrie & Co.


1. How does a difference between warm and cold air make chimneys useful?

2. Why is a tall chimney better than a short one?

3. How large are the chimneys or stacks on the largest steamships?


Arrange your paper as you are accustomed to do. Number the lines from one to ten. As you read each of the following statements, decide for yourself if it is true or false, and write the word true or the word false as the case may be, on the proper line of your paper.

1. Cloth is woven on looms.

2. Strawberries grow on trees.

3. The American Indians were always friendly to the early settlers.

4. Russia is a happy country.

5. The monks of the middle ages were the best educated men of their time.

6. The Pilgrims settled Virginia in 1620.

7. It is not important that a voter should be intelligent.

8. Warm clothing costs less than doctors' bills.

9. Education is cheaper than revolution.

10. Money earns money.

[Pg 63]


Here is Benjamin Franklin's own account of his first attempt at writing. You see, he did not have a chance to learn to write, as you do, by practice in composition in school.

My brother had, in 1720 or 1721, begun to print a newspaper. It was the second that appeared in America, and was called the "New England Courant". The only one before it was the "Boston News-Letter". I remember his being dissuaded by some of his friends from the undertaking, as not likely to succeed, one newspaper being, in their judgment, enough for America. At this time (1771) there are not less than five and twenty. He went on, however, with the undertaking; and after having worked in composing the types and printing off the sheets, I was employed to carry the papers through the streets to the customers.

He had some ingenious men among his friends, who amused themselves by writing little pieces for this paper, which gained it credit and made it more in demand; and these gentlemen often visited us. Hearing their conversations, and their accounts of the approbation their papers were received with, I was excited to try my hand among them; but being still a boy, and suspecting that my brother would object to printing anything of mine in his paper if he knew it to be mine, I contrived to disguise my hand; and, writing an anonymous paper, I put it in at night under the door of the printing-house. It was found in the morning and communicated to his writing friends when they called in as usual. They read it, and commented on it in my hearing; and I had the exquisite pleasure of finding it met with their approbation, and that in their different guesses at the author, none were named but men of some character among us for learning and ingenuity. I[Pg 64] suppose now that I was rather lucky in my judges and that perhaps they were not really so very good ones as I then esteemed them.

Encouraged, however, by this, I wrote and conveyed in the same way to the press several more papers which were equally approved; and I kept my secret till my small fund of sense for such performances was pretty well exhausted, and then I discovered it, when I began to be considered a little more by my brother's acquaintance, and in a manner that did not quite please him, as he thought, probably with reason, that it tended to make me too vain.

Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin.


1. What is there in this story that suggests that Franklin was a modest boy?

2. How does it seem to you, from this story, that young people in Franklin's day were looked upon by their elders?

3. Was he a good writer when he began? How do you know?

4. Can you tell the meaning of the words in italics, from their use in the story? Look them up in a dictionary and compare the meaning you find with your judgment from the way they were used.


1. I need six dozen 1¼" screws. They will cost me five cents a dozen. There are twelve dozen in a box, and a box will cost thirty-two cents. Would it pay me to get just what I need now?

2. All but three of the girls in our class are members of the United States School Garden Army. Edith is not a member of the United States School Garden Army. Is it possible that Edith is a member of our class?

[Pg 65]


Did you ever think how hard it would be to get along without clocks? At almost every city street corner we can look at a clock; every railway station, every post office, every schoolhouse, has at least one; and everybody's house contains one or more. And at that, boys and girls are sometimes late for school.

No, we certainly couldn't manage without these useful mechanisms; and yet, there was a time, not so many centuries ago, either, when they were a rare possession; and a time before that when they had not yet been invented. What did our far-off ancestors do?

Let us pretend that we are going for a walk in the beautiful garden of a country mansion. Here in the midst of a rose bed stands a low stone pillar, with an upright, triangular piece of metal attached to its top near the center, and some figures marked in a circle around the edge.


This is a sun-dial. The owner of the garden has it here for a pretty ornament; but in the old times, before the days of clocks, people told the time by means of sun-dials, judging the hour by the position of the shadow cast by the piece of metal upon the stone. If you would like, just for the fun of it, to have such a sun-clock in your own little garden, there is a very easy way to make one.

Choose a spot of ground that is perfectly flat, where the sun shines all day long. Set up, or get your father or big brother to set up for you, a post four or five inches thick. Make it stand perfectly firm and straight. Now find a[Pg 66] thin, flat piece of board—a box top or a shingle will do—and nail it like a table top on to the top of the post. After these preparations have been made, you must wait for a clear, starry night when you can go out and find the North Star. The way to do this is by looking at the "Big Dipper", the group of stars that of course you know.

Big Dipper

The two stars marked A and B are called the "Pointers"; and, looking in the direction of the arrow, the next star in line with them is the North Star. Take a straight, thin stick, and fasten it to the center of the top of the post, slanting it so that it will point directly at the North Star. That is all you can do until the next day.

At twelve o'clock, if the sun is bright, you will find your slanting stick casting a shadow on the piece of board. Mark the line where it falls, and put the figure 12 upon it, to show that this line belongs to twelve o'clock. Do the same thing at one, two, and three o'clock, and so on through the afternoon. In the same way, the next day, you can mark the morning hours.

If you like, you can print on your sun-dial the motto that is often used for them: "Non horas sed serenas", which means "I mark none but sunny hours".


1. What did our ancestors use instead of a clock?

2. How can you find the North Star?

3. Can you draw a diagram of the sun-clock?

[Pg 67]


Arrange your paper with your name on the first line and your grade on the second line. Divide the rest of your paper into four parts with lines drawn as shown below:


Below is a list of words that is not very well arranged. Some words suggest a long railroad journey, some an errand to the bank, some the lonely occupation of a cowboy, and others a vacation at the shore. Write the words, traveling, banking, grazing, seashore at the top of your paper on the fourth line as shown above. Now rearrange the words below into four columns under these four heads, putting all the words that seem to suggest traveling in the first column, and all the words that suggest banking in the second column, and every word that suggests grazing or seashore in its proper column. When you finish wait quietly for the others.

discount station flock cattle
train interest bridge deposit
sheep check vault account
cashier salt-lick grass ranch
sand waves life-guard balance
suitcase taxi signal curve
ocean swim fence herd
spring adding machine pass-book tree
beach fish conductor ticket
boardwalk engineer lighthouse steamer

[Pg 68]


This selection was written by a white man who ran away from home when a boy and lived among the Indians of the plains for twelve years about the middle of the last century. He married an Indian maiden, Washtella, and became a chief in the tribe. He gives many interesting descriptions of Indian life and customs, which probably give some idea of the way our own ancestors may have lived thousands of years ago.

The Indians depended upon the buffalo for their chief supply of food. Millions of these animals roamed the plains in vast herds. The Indians cannot be blamed in the least for slaughtering these animals for food, but the white men who drove the Indians from the plains killed the buffaloes often for mere sport, and exterminated them except for a few small herds now in captivity.

Read the story as rapidly as you can without skipping or losing the meaning, and be prepared to stand in front of the class and give a complete discussion of any of the topics given at the end of the selection.

When our camp was pitched, I walked out along the banks of the beautiful lake, to see what I could discover. Its waters were clear as crystal and full of fish. Not a boat, and perhaps not even a canoe, had ever rippled its bosom, and I could not but imagine, as I gazed across the blue expanse, that one day commerce would spring up, and towns and cities be built upon its green shores.

Looking to the north, I was startled from my reflections by seeing a large buffalo cow coming down to the water to drink. Hastening back to the village, I quickly procured my Hawkins rifle and ran over the little eminence that hid the lodges from the animal. She had approached quite near the water, and was not more than one hundred and fifty yards distant from me, when, hearing a noise in my[Pg 69] rear, I looked back and saw several Indians running toward me with their guns. The cow at the same moment saw them, and turned to make off; but too late, for I had drawn a bead on her heart, and at one shot dropped her dead.

All the village came running and shouting, and the squaws gathered around the dead buffalo, jostling and elbowing each other as they tore off the meat. It is the Indian rule that game is common property, and my buffalo was soon reduced to a pile of bones by the knives of the busy squaws. I could not help laughing as I watched them struggling for the choice morsels. First, the skin was carefully removed, and then the muscles and gristle cut away. Then, just as a squaw was about to take the coveted part, she would be rudely thrust aside, and some other squaw would take it. These exploits were received with loud shouts of laughter, and no ill-temper or quarreling was observed among the excited crowd of women who surrounded the carcass.

On returning to my lodge, I found Washtella in great glee over my good luck, and she explained that it was no small matter to have killed the first buffalo slain in the hunt. Presently I received a message from the chief, and was informed by an old Indian that, having killed the first buffalo, I would be entitled to lead the hunt on the first day. Meat was brought me, and the skin or robe, which, according to the Indian custom, is always given to the one who kills the animal. So proud was Washtella that she did nothing all the evening but talk of my good fortune, and I could not help being amused at the boasts of the little maid. Nothing could possibly have happened that would have given her more pleasure.

The next morning, as soon as it was daylight, I was[Pg 70] aroused, and told that the warriors were waiting for me to lead them in the chase. Assembling all of them before my lodge, I addressed them, saying I was a young man, and lacked experience, but if they would allow me, I would name one worthy to lead them in my place. This was received with loud shouts of approval, and as soon as quiet was restored, I pointed to a young warrior, and said: "He is a good man, go and follow him." The warrior I had selected was my bitter enemy. As his animosity was well known in the tribe, the honors thus thrust upon him, by one from whom he had expected no favors, surprised and pleased them. For a moment the brave hung his head, and then came forward, and, amid the shouts of the warriors, gave me his hand. Feeling unwell, I did not go upon the hunt that day, but in the evening, when the party returned, my old enemy came to my lodge, and as a token of his friendship, presented me with two fine robes he had taken during the day.

On the second day I went out with the hunters, and joined in a most exciting chase. Under the directions of a chief, we deployed at wide distances, and then, closing in, surrounded a herd of buffaloes on three sides; and as soon as the herd began to move, the chase began. Our tough little ponies bore us swiftly along, and soon the herd was hard pressed. Presently it began to scatter, and then each Indian, selected a buffalo and followed the beast up until he had killed it. It is astonishing how fast the great lumbering animals can run, and although they do not seem to go over the ground very rapidly, it takes a good horse to come up with them. Their shambling "lope" is equal in speed to an American horse's gallop, and they can climb steep hills and get over rough ground faster than a horse. They run with their heads near the earth, and a hundred of[Pg 71] them will make a mighty noise that resembles the rumbling of distant thunder. The warriors do not stop to touch the game after it is dead, as the skinning and packing of the meat is the work of the squaws who follow in the wake of the hunters. For this purpose they have pack-ponies, and two women will skin and pack three or four buffaloes in a day.

The meat is brought to the village, is cut in narrow slices, about an inch thick, and three or four inches long. These slices are then hung on poles, or stretched on small willows laid across a frame-work of poles. The meat is frequently turned, and is allowed to remain in the sun and air for three days. It should be covered or brought in at night, and must not be allowed to get wet by rain while it is curing. This is called jerking buffalo, and is a simple and easy process of curing meat. The pure crisp air of the plains soon dries it, and then it has a sweet, pleasant taste. I have known climates on the plains where nearly all the year carcasses could be hung up and left without spoiling until used. Meat, when jerked, is only about half the weight and size it is when in a raw state. If soaked in water it will swell greatly, and then, unless used immediately, it will spoil.

When the buffalo flesh is dried sufficiently, it is put into parfleshes, or wrappers, made of rawhide cut square, which will hold about half a bushel. They are sewed up at the bottom and sides, the laps at the top being left open until they are filled. The meat is then laid in flat and packed tightly like plugs of tobacco. When two or three layers of meat have been put in, hot buffalo fat is brought and poured over it until all the interstices are filled up. Then more layers of meat are put in and more fat poured on, until the parflesh is full, when the laps are folded over each other and tightly sewed up with sinews. The meat is now[Pg 72] ready for winter use, and two parfleshes are fastened together like a pair of saddle-bags, and slung across the back of a pony when the Indians travel. To prevent these bags or wrappers from hurting the ponies' backs, the under side is lined with fur or bear skin.

We had hunted four days from our camp on the lake, and although we had taken the utmost precaution not unnecessarily to alarm the buffaloes most of them had gone a long distance from the village. A council was called, and it was determined we should go over to the lakes that lay on the Jim River, sixty miles distant. We immediately set out, moving around the lake to the right of the buffaloes, so as not to disturb them. Our route lay across a beautiful level country through which meandered little streams eight or ten miles apart. We traveled leisurely along, however, halting on the creeks, and making about sixteen miles per day, for many of our ponies were already heavily laden with meat.

On the fourth day we reached the lakes, and again pitched our village. Here we found plenty of buffaloes and a great many calves, which were very acceptable to us, as we wanted some parfleshes of veal.

We hunted four days, and took a great deal of meat. Each family had from three to six parfleshes, according to its size, which was as much as it could use during the winter, and enough for the infirm besides. So the hunt was announced at an end, and we began to prepare for our return. I had been exceedingly fortunate, and had taken no less than nine parfleshes of meat and had twelve robes.

There are several methods of killing buffaloes besides the regular chase. One of these, as practiced by the Indians, is as follows:

The buffaloes are watched until they graze near a precipice,[Pg 73] when two or three Indians put a buffalo skin on sticks, and concealing themselves under it, approach near the herd slowly, as if grazing. This must be done when the wind is favorable, and blowing from the buffaloes. If the decoy is successful, other Indians make a wide circuit, surrounding the herd on all sides, except that toward the bluff. Then they steal up as close as possible, and when the buffaloes, discover them, they shout, shake their blankets and poles, and close in upon the herd. The animals are greatly alarmed, but seeing the mock buffalo (which has managed to attract attention) set off for the bluffs, they rush madly after it. When the baiters reach the bluff, they fling the mock buffalo over the precipice, and betake themselves to holes in the bank or crevices among the rocks. It is in vain the leaders of the herd halt when they see the chasm; the mass from behind, crazed by the poles and blankets of the Indians, who are now close upon them, rush madly on, and press those in front over the cliff.

It is exceedingly dangerous to bait buffalo, as the herd frequently overtake the false buffalo and trample it beneath their feet, or the great beasts, falling among the rock, crush the Indian baiters to death. Many reckless young Indians, who as baiters have gone too far inland, have, after the chase, been found dead on the plain, or their mangled bodies lay at the foot of the precipice with the carcasses of the animals they had so cruelly deceived. It takes a brave Indian to be a baiter, but there are always plenty of young and foolish boys who are anxious to engage in the dangerous sport.

After the buffaloes have fallen and killed or maimed themselves, a party of Indians who have been concealed near the foot of the precipice suddenly advance and finish them with axes and rifles.

[Pg 74]

Our hunt having ended, the chief ordered that the usual feast and rejoicing should take place. A long pole was provided, a buffalo head put on the top of it, and a number of tails nailed, at right angles, to the sides. The pole was then set firmly in the ground, in the center of an open space before the village, and buffalo heads were piled up around it. The heads were set in a circle, and arranged to look as hideous as possible.

Immense quantities of buffalo meat were now brought, and the feast was made ready. At these feasts nothing but buffalo meat is eaten, and every one makes it a point to gorge himself to the fullest extent. Even the dogs are stuffed, and the women and children are persuaded to eat while they can force down a bite. The greater the quantity of meat eaten, the greater the honor; and some starve themselves for two or three days in advance, in order to do justice to the occasion. The meat is prepared in every form—boiled, fried, broiled, roasted, and raw.

When one can eat no more, he goes to the pole, and as soon as a sufficient number have collected, the dance begins. The warriors sit in a circle around the pole, and the squaws, gaudily dressed and painted, form a circle around the warriors. At a signal the drums beat, and all stand up. Then the squaws sing, and the warriors move around to the right and the squaws to the left, each keeping time to the drums. The dance is a slow, shuffling motion that soon makes one very tired. When one of the Indians gets tired, he steps out of the circle and another takes his place. As soon as it is dark, wood is brought, fires are made around the pole, and the dancing is kept up all night. The feasting frequently continues for three days, and at no time is the pole without its set of dancers. The amount of buffalo consumed is prodigious, when we consider that, besides the[Pg 75] vast quantities eaten by the Indians, each family has from six to ten days.

When the feast was over, we began to prepare in earnest for our return. The meat was carefully distributed, so that no pony would be overloaded, and everything was neatly packed. It took both my ponies and all my dogs to carry my meat and lodge, so Washtella and I had to walk. We considered this no great hardship, however, as nearly the whole village was on foot. We made only eight or ten miles a day; but at last, after a most fatiguing march, reached the Missouri, and entered our old camp near Fort Randall.

From "Belden the White Chief".

Outline for Topical Recitations

Introduction—The Scene of the Camp.

1. My good luck.

    (a) Killing the first buffalo of the hunt.
    (b) Cutting up the meat.
    (c) Receiving appointment as leader.

2. Chasing the buffalo.

3. The winter's food supply.

    (a) Drying the meat.
    (b) Packing.
    (c) Transporting.
    (d) Ending the hunt.

4. Killing buffaloes by a decoy.

5. Celebrating a successful hunt.

    (a) The place for the ceremony.
    (b) The hearty meal.
    (c) The dance.

6. The return to the winter camp.

[Pg 76]


This selection tells of life among the Indians of our western plains before the buffalo became almost extinct.

As you read, write topics that will enable you to recall the various things the author tells about. Your teacher will have two or three of you put your list of topics on the blackboard and will ask various members of the class to come to the front of the room and tell the class about one topic each. While a pupil is reciting no one should raise his hand nor interrupt. Be a good sport and give the one who is reciting a chance to make his topic as interesting as he can.

This selection can be divided into several large topics with details under each. These details may be stated as sub-topics under the large ones. Your teacher may wish you to look it over again to see if you can find the four main topics.

Nothing is more important in learning to remember what you read than the habit of organizing your material in the form of an outline. A good outline generally takes some such form as this:


1. First main topic


Sometimes there may be two, and sometimes several sub-topics. Never use any letter if there is only one topic. When there is only one topic under any heading, you should simply write the topic out.

2. Second main topic

(c), etc.

Use as many main topics as you need to tell the story or to include the substance of what you are outlining.

[Pg 77]

One can have no appreciative idea of an Indian village, unless he has been permitted to come across the prairie through a hot summer's sun, and suddenly discovers one nestled under the broad shade trees, beside a clear running stream, in a green valley. How pleasant the grass then looks; how refreshing the bright waters, and how cozy the tall lodges, with their shaded verandas of thickly interwoven boughs!

All day long we had toiled over the scorching plain, through clouds of grasshoppers that often struck us in the face with sufficient force to make the skin smart for several minutes. Once we had seen a mirage of a beautiful lake, fringed with trees and surrounded by green pastures which invited us to pursue its fleeting shadows, but we knew all about these deceptions by sad experience, and pushed steadily on over the burning sands.

These mirages often deceive the weary traveler of the desert. Suddenly the horseman sees a river or lake, apparently just ahead of him, and he rides on and on, hoping to come up to it. For hours it lies before his eyes, and then in a moment disappears, leaving him miles and miles out of his way in the midst of desert sands. Men have ridden all day striving to reach the beautiful river just before them, and then at night have turned back to plod their weary way to where they had started from in the morning.

The mirage we had seen was most delightful, representing a clear lake, with trees, meadows, and villages nestling on its shores, but it scarcely equalled the reality of the scene when, late in the afternoon, we ascended a rise in the prairie, and saw below us a wide stream lined with green trees, and on its banks a large Indian encampment.

The ponies pricked up their ears and neighed with pleasure as they smelt the water, and our own delight was unbounded.[Pg 78] We halted for a moment to admire the beautiful prospect. Through the majestic trees slanting rays of the sun shivered on the grass! Far away, winding like a huge silver-serpent, ran the river, while near by in a shady grove stood the village with the children at play on the green lawns not made by hands. The white sides of the teepees shone in the setting sunlight, and the smoke curled lazily upward from their dingy tops. Bright ribbons and red grass, looking like streamers on a ship, fluttered from the lodge-poles, and gaudily dressed squaws and warriors walked about, or sat on the green sod under the trees.

Near the village were hundreds of horses and ponies, with bright feathers flaunting in their manes and tails as they cropped the rich grass of the valley.

A group of noisy children were playing at a game much resembling ten-pins; some boys were shooting at a mark with arrows, and up the stream several youths were returning home with rod and line, and fine strings of speckled trout.

Scores of men and women were swimming about in the river, now diving, and then dousing each other amid screams of laughter from the bystanders on the shore. Here and there a young girl darted about like a fish, her black hair streaming behind her in the water.

While we looked, the little children suddenly ceased from play and ran into the lodges; mounted men surrounded the herd of horses, and the swimmers and promenaders hastened toward the village. We had been perceived by the villagers, and the unexpected arrival of strange horsemen at an Indian encampment always creates great excitement. They may be friends, but they are more often enemies, so the villagers are always prepared for a surprise.

Soon men were seen running to and fro with guns and[Pg 79] bows, and in a few minutes, some mounted warriors left the encampment and rode toward us, going first to the top of the highest mounds to see if they could discover other horsemen in the rear or to the right or left of us.

No sooner did they ascertain there were but three in the party, than they rode boldly up and asked us our business. I told them who we were, and where we were from, upon which they cordially invited us to the village.

As we approached, men, women, and children poured out of the encampment to look at the strangers, and having satisfied their curiosity, the sports and amusements of the evening were renewed.

I asked permission to camp of no one, for I needed none. So I marched right down to the center of the village, and finding a vacant space, pitched my lodge.

A few Santee women gathered about my squaws and chatted with them, anxious to learn the news from down the river. Seeing they were interfering with the unpacking of the ponies and the erecting of the lodge, I unceremoniously ordered them to be gone, and they went quietly away. The lodge was soon up and the ponies unpacked and put out to graze. Having seen things put in order for the night, I sauntered out through the village to learn the news.

I was agreeably surprised when I learned there was a white man in the village, who had been sent out to the Indians as a missionary. All the savages spoke of him as a kind-hearted, good man, who was a great friend of the Great Spirit, and of the Big Father at Washington.

I made haste to pay my respects to my white brother and found him indeed a good Christian gentleman. He had a white wife and child, and he and they were living comfortably and pleasantly with these wild children of the desert. I talked more than an hour with the good man;[Pg 80] it was so delightful to see and speak with one of my own blood and color. When I left him, I promised I would return the next day and dine with him. It may sound strange to hear one talk of "dining out" in an Indian camp, but the meal was none the less wholesome or abundant on account of the place in which it was served.

I found the Santees a most excellent people. The warriors were men of great pride and bravery. The chiefs of the Santees were men of few words, but they were dignified, courteous, and truthful in all they said and did. After all my experiences and disappointments among the Indians of the plains, I could not help admiring and respecting these people, for here at last I had found a tribe such as Cooper had represented, and Longfellow had characterized in "Hiawatha".

The Santee lodges were tall conical-shaped tents, made of buffalo hide tanned with the hair off, and stretched around twelve poles. These poles are tied together at the top, and set around a circle of one hundred and eight feet. The lodge, when finished, is thirty-six feet in diameter at the ground. The skin or covering is cut bias, the small end being fastened to the top of the poles and the long end wrapped round and round the poles, and finally fastened to the ground with a wooden pin or stone. The poles are not set in the ground, but the edge of the lodge-cover is pinned down with short pegs made of hard wood. An aperture is left at the top of the lodge for the smoke to escape, and the fire is built in the center. When the door is open it draws well, and all the smoke goes up and out at the aperture.

These lodges, although standing on the surface of the ground and apparently very fragile, will withstand the most violent wind and rain storms. I have seen them[Pg 81] outlive the strongest modern tents, and stand up even when great trees were blown down.

During my residence in the Santee village I saw many curious things, and learned much of the mode of life and ceremonies of the Indians.

Most people have seen the bows and arrows used by boys in the eastern States, and those who have observed them know how feeble they are, not even being capable of killing the smallest animal. Do not be surprised, then, when I tell you that an Indian with his bow, will send an arrow entirely through a horse, a man, or a buffalo. The shaggy-coated bear or Rocky Mountain lion will fall beneath a few shots from the savage's strong bow, while the fleet wild deer is not swift enough to escape the flight of his arrow. With unerring aim the hunter sends his deadly shaft, at eighty yards, into the heart or eye of his game, and with ease tips birds from the tops of the highest trees. Of course, it requires long practice to acquire such skill in the use of the bow, but the Indian will tell you that more depends upon the manufacture of the weapon than the skill of the marksman. With a good Indian bow and arrow a white man can, in a few hours, learn to shoot fairly well, while with a bow and arrow of his own manufacture he can hardly hit a tree the size of a man's body a rod off.

Let me teach you how to make a good bow and arrow. And first we will begin with the arrow. The shoots, or rods, must be cut in the arrow season; that is, when the summer's growth is ended. They must not have any branches or limbs on them, but must be straight and smooth. The Indians cut their arrows late in the fall, when the timber is hardening to withstand the blasts of winter. The sticks are not quite as thick as one's little finger, and they are sorted and tied in bundles of twenty and twenty-five.[Pg 82] These bundles are two and two and one-half feet in length, and are wrapped tightly from end to end with strips of rawhide or elk skin. The sticks are then hung up over fire in the teepee to be smoked and dried, and the wrapping keeps them from warping or bending. When they are seasoned, which takes several weeks, the bundles are taken down, the covering removed, and the bark scraped off. The wood is very tough then, and of a yellowish color. The next process is to cut the arrow shafts exactly one length, and in this great care must be used; for arrows of different lengths fly differently, and, unless they are alike, the hunter's aim is destroyed. Another reason for measuring the length of arrows is to identify them; for no two warriors shoot arrows of precisely the same length. Each warrior carries a measuring, or pattern stick, and it is necessary only to compare an arrow with the stick to find out to whom it belongs. But should the arrows by chance be of one length, there are other means of identifying them; for every hunter has his own private mark in the shaft, the head, or the feather. Of many thousands I have examined, I have never found two arrows exactly alike when they were made by different warriors.

When the shafts have been made even, the next work is to form the notch for the bow-string. This is done with a sharp knife, and, when made properly, the bottom of the notch will be precisely in the center of the shaft. The arrow is then scraped and tapered toward the notch, leaving a round head an inch long near the notch to prevent the string from splitting the shaft, and to make a firm hold for the thumb and forefinger in drawing the bow.

All the arrows are peeled, scraped, and notched, and then the warrior creases them. To do this, he takes an arrow-head and scores the shaft in zigzag lines from end to[Pg 83] end. These creases, or fluted gutters, in the shaft are to let the blood run out when an animal is struck. The blood flows along the little gutters in the wood and runs off the end of the arrow. The arrow-head is made of steel or stone. It is shaped like a heart or dart and has a stem about an inch long. The sides of the stem are nicked or filed out like saw-teeth. Nearly all the wild Indians now use steel arrow-heads, which are a great article of trade among the savages. Certain firms in the East manufacture many hundreds of thousands every year and send them to the traders who sell them to the Indians for furs.

When the shaft is ready for the head, the warrior saws a slit with a nicked knife in the end opposite the notch, and inserts the stem of the arrow-head. The slit must be exactly in the center of the shaft, and as deep as the stem is long. When properly adjusted, the teeth of the stem show themselves on each side of the slit. Buffalo, deer, or elk sinew is then softened in water, and the wood is wrapped firmly to the arrowhead, taking care to fit the sinew in the teeth of the stem to prevent the head from pulling out.

The next process is to put on the feathers. To do this properly great care must be taken. Turkey or eagle quills are soaked in warm water to make them split easily and uniformly. The feather is then stripped from the quill and put on the shaft of the arrow. Three feathers are placed on each shaft, and they are laid equi-distant along the stem. The big end of the feather is fastened near the notch of the shaft and laid six or eight inches straight along the wood. The feathers are glued to the shaft and wrapped at each end with fine sinew. The arrow is next painted, marked, dried, and is ready for use. It takes a warrior a whole day to make an arrow, for which the trader allows him ten cents.

[Pg 84]

Arrow-heads are put up in packages of a dozen each. They cost the trader half a cent, or six cents per package, and are sold to the Indians at enormous profits. Thus, twelve arrow-heads will be exchanged for a buffalo robe, worth $8 or $9, and three, for a beaver skin, worth $4. Indians often buy arrow-heads at these enormous prices, and then sell the arrow back to the trader at ten cents, in exchange for goods, beads, or knives.

Travelers on the prairie have often seen the Indians throwing up signal lights at night, and have wondered how it was done. I will tell you all about it. They take off the head of the arrow and dip the shaft in gunpowder, mixed with glue. This they call making fire-arrows. The gunpowder adheres to the wood, and coats it three or four inches from its end, to the depth of one-fourth of an inch. Chewed bark mixed with dry gunpowder is then fastened to the stick, and the arrow is ready for use. When it is to be fired, a warrior places it on his bow-string and draws his bow ready to let it fly; the point of the arrow is then lowered; another warrior lights the dry bark, and it is shot high in the air. When it has gone up a little distance, it bursts out into flame, and burns brightly until it falls to the ground. Various meanings are attached to these fire-arrow signals. Thus, one arrow meant, among the Santees, "The enemy are about"; two arrows from the same point, "Danger"; three, "Great danger"; many, "They are too strong, or we are falling back"; two arrows sent up at the same moment, "We will attack"; three, "Soon"; four, "Now"; if shot diagonally, "In that direction." These signals are constantly changed, and are always agreed upon when the party goes out or before it separates. The Indians send their signals very intelligently, and seldom make mistakes in telegraphing each other by these silent monitors. The[Pg 85] amount of information they can communicate, by fires and burning arrows, is perfectly wonderful. Every war party carries with it bundles of signal arrows.

The bow—the weapon so long in use among the different Indian tribes of this continent and so typical of Indian life—is made of various kinds of wood, and its manufacture is a work of no little labor. Even at this day the bow is much used, and although an Indian may have a gun, he is seldom seen without his long bow, and his quiver well filled with arrows. The gun may get out of order, and he can not mend it; the ammunition may become wet, and there is an end of hunting; but the faithful bow is always in order, and its swift arrows ready to fly in wet as well as dry weather. Thus reasons the savage, and so he keeps his bow to fall back upon in case of accident.

Until the invention of breech-loaders, the bow was a far more deadly weapon at close range than the best rifle. A warrior could discharge his arrows with much greater rapidity and precision than the most expert woodsman could charge and fire a muzzle-loading rifle.

The Indian boy's first lesson in life is to shoot with a bow. He is furnished with a small bow and "beewaks", or blunt arrows, so that he will hurt nobody, and with these he shoots at marks. By and by, when he has acquired some skill in handling his weapon, he is given small arrow-points, and with these he shoots birds, squirrels, and small beasts. As he grows older he receives the long-bow, and at last the strong-bow.

These strong-bows are powerful weapons, and I have seen them so stiff that a white man could not bend them more than four inches, while an Indian would, with apparent ease, draw them to the arrow's head. A shaft fired from one of these bows will go through the body of a buffalo,[Pg 86] and arrow-heads have been found so firmly imbedded in the thigh bones of a man that no force could extract them.

The parents take great pride in teaching young Indians to shoot, and the development of the muscles and strength of their arms is watched with much interest. A stout arm, ornamented with knots of muscles is a great honor to an Indian, and no one but those who can handle the strong-bow are deemed fit for war.

Of all the Indians of the West, the Sioux and Crows make the best bows. The Sioux bow is generally four feet long, one and a half inches wide, and an inch thick at the middle. It tapers from the center, or "grasp", toward the ends, and is but half an inch wide and half an inch thick at the extremities. At one end the bow-string is notched into the wood and made permanently fast, while at the other end two notches are cut in the wood, and the string at that end of the bow is made like a slip-knot or loop. When the bow is to be used, the warrior sets the end to which the string is made fast firmly on the ground, and then bends down the other end until the loop slips into the notch. This is called "stringing" the bow. The bow is never kept strung except when in actual use, as it would lose its strength and elasticity by being constantly bent. When unstrung, a good bow is perfectly straight, and, if properly made and seasoned, will always retain its elasticity.

The wood generally used in manufacturing bows is ash, hickory, iron-wood, elm, and cedar. No hickory grows west of the Missouri, and it is very difficult to get; and an Indian will always pay a high price for a piece of this wood.

When the bow is made of cedar, it need not be seasoned; but all other woods require seasoning, and are not worked until perfectly dry. Every teepee has its bow-wood hung[Pg 87] up with the arrows in the smoke of the fire well out of reach of the flames. A warrior with a sharp knife and a sandstone, or file, can make a bow in three days if he works hard, but it generally takes a week, and sometimes a month, to finish a fancy bow. When done, it is worth three dollars in trade.

All the bows differ in length and strength, being gauged for the arms of those who are to use them; but a white man would, until he learned the trick of it, find himself unable to bend even the weakest war-bow. This has given rise to the impression that the Indians are stronger than white men, which is an error; for, although only a slight man myself, I learned, after some practice, to bend the strongest bow, and could send a shaft as far or as deep as any savage. On one occasion I shot an arrow, while running, into a buffalo so that the point came out on the opposite side; another arrow disappeared in the buffalo, not even the notch being visible. I have seen a bow throw an arrow five hundred yards, and have myself often discharged one entirely through a board one inch thick. Once I found a man's skull transfixed to a tree by an arrow which had gone completely through the bones, and imbedded itself so deep in the wood as to sustain the weight of the head. He had probably been tied up to the tree and shot.

The surface of the bow is made perfectly flat, then roughened with a file or stone, the sinew being dipped in hot glue and laid on the wood. The sinew is then lapped at the ends and on the middle or grasp of the bow. The string is attached while green, twisted, and left to dry on the bow. The whole outside of the wood and sinew is now covered with a thick solution of glue, and the bow is done. Rough bows look like hickory limbs with the bark on, but some of them are beautifully painted and ornamented. I once[Pg 88] knew a trader to glue some red velvet on a bow, and the Indians paid him an immense price for it, thinking it very wonderful.

In traveling, the bow is carried in a sheath attached to the arrow quiver, and the whole is slung to the back by a belt of elk or buckskin, which passes diagonally across the breast, and is fastened to the ends of the quiver. The quiver and bow-sheath is generally made of the skin of an ox or some wild animal, and is tanned with the hair on. The quiver is ornamented with tassels or fringe of buckskin, and the belt across the breast is painted or worked with beads. Each Indian has his sign or name on his belt, bow, sheath, or arrow quiver. The celebrated Sioux chief, Spotted Tail, or "Sin-ta Gallessca", had his bow-sheath made from the skin of a spotted ox he had killed in a train his warriors captured, and as the tail was left dangling at the end of the sheath, the Indians ever afterward called him Spotted Tail, or "The man with the Spotted Tail". You may be curious to know what this Indian's name was before he was called Spotted Tail, and I must tell you many Indians never have a name, while others have half a dozen. Some act of bravery, or an article of clothing, generally fixes an Indian's name, but a new deed, or a new head-dress, may change it.

To shoot with the bow properly, it must be held firmly in three fingers of the right hand; the arrow is fixed on the bow-string with the thumb and forefinger of the left hand, and the other three fingers are used to pull the string. The shaft of the arrow lays between the thumb and forefinger of the right hand, which rest over the grasp of the bow. To shoot, the bow is turned slightly, so that one end is higher than the other, and the arrow is then launched.

From "Belden the White Chief".

[Pg 89]


This drill will test your ability to recognize easily relationships between words. Beginning on the first line, write the figures 1 to 10.

In each group of words below, the first two words have a certain connection in meaning. When you discover this relationship between the first two words, you can find among the five words that follow, two other words that bear the same relationship. For example, in group one, the tire is made of rubber. Now if you look among the words that follow, you will easily see that the words house and bricks are related in the same way. (The house is made of bricks.) Write these four words after figure 1 on your paper:

1. tire rubber house bricks

Look at group two. We can easily see that just as the tailor makes clothes so the baker makes bread. So you will write these four words after figure 2 on your paper:

2. tailor clothes baker bread

Complete the exercise by selecting the two words in each remaining group that are related in meaning in the same way that the given words are related in meaning. When you have finished, wait quietly for the others.

1. tire, rubber (wagon, circle, house, brush, bricks).

2. tailor, clothes (baker, store, city, ship, bread).

3. fire, heat (knife, candle, burn, light, wood).

4. sailor, sea (book, sing, soldier, fight, land).

5. gun, bullet (bow, horse, shoot, arrow, fly).

6. young, quick (old, fast, grow, father, slow).

7. apple, tree (oranges, south, grape, vine, sweet).

8. ceiling, floor (sky, attic, stair, earth, high).

9. window, glass (silk, knife, book, steel, pencil).

10. squirrel, chatters (bird, tree, sings, fly, nuts).

[Pg 90]


Here is a picture of the work of the army of the United States in opening the great prairie country of the West. Today we get immense quantities of our food from the states between the Mississippi River and the Rocky Mountains. Seventy years ago the most of this territory, now the richest farming country in the United States, was inhabited chiefly by roving tribes of Indians who lived mainly by hunting the buffalo.

You will notice many details that show that the story was written many years ago. For instance, the soldiers are spoken of as "blue jackets". Make a list of these points as you read.

Read the selection as rapidly as you can without overlooking important details. When the majority of the class has finished, your teacher will ask you in turn to stand before the class and recite on the topics given at the end. You should try to make your recitation interesting by giving details that will help your hearers to see what the author has described.

As soon as the traveler crosses the Missouri, and enters the territories, he begins to find the blue jackets, and the farther west he goes the more numerous they become. It is only just to the army to say that it has ever been the pioneer of civilization in America. Ever since Washington crossed the Alleghanies, and, with his brave Virginians, pushed to the Ohio, the work has been steadily going on. From Pittsburgh, the army led far down the Ohio to the Mississippi, and thence along the Father of Waters to New Orleans; next west to the Miami, and far up the lakes; then to the Missouri, and so on for thousands of miles until the other ocean was reached through Oregon and California. A line of forts is pushed out into the new and uninhabited country, and presently people come in and settle near the posts. A few years elapse, and there are hundreds of citizens in all directions. Then the forts are sold or pulled[Pg 91] down, and the troops march farther west to new posts.

The knapsacks are packed, the cavalry are mounted, and we are ready to occupy a new line of country. "Head of column west, forward, march!" and away we go. What an outfit! The long lines of cavalry wind over the hills, and then follows the compact column of infantry. Then come a few pieces of artillery and the train. What a sight! Hundreds of wagons, filled with every conceivable article of food and implement of labor: steam-engines, saw-mills, picks, shovels, hoes, masses of iron, piles of lumber, tons of pork, hard bread, flour, rice, sugar, coffee, tea, and potatoes, all drawn in huge wagons. Six mules or ten oxen are seen tugging the monster wheeled machines along. The train is generally preceded by a score or two of carriages, ambulances, and light wagons, containing the families of officers, women, children, and laundresses. Behind the wagon train are driven the herds of cattle and sheep, and, last of all, comes a company of infantry, and, perhaps, one of cavalry.

Day after day the living, moving mass toils on toward the setting sun. Bridges are built, gulleys filled, hill-sides dug down, and roads cut along precipices. We wonder how the pioneer corps can keep out of our way; but each day we go steadily forward, seeing only their work, never overtaking them. A ride to the front will show us how this is done. It is mid-day, and a company is going out to relieve the pioneers. The knapsacks are lightened, and off we go at a quick pace. At sundown we come upon the pioneers, and find some building a bridge, while others cut down the hill so the wagons can pass. We relieve them of their shovels, picks, and axes, and one-half of the company goes into camp, and the other half goes to work. At midnight we are aroused by the beating of the drum, and the half of the company that is in camp goes out to relieve the working[Pg 92] party. At daylight we are relieved in turn; the work goes on day and night, and that is the way the pioneers keep ahead of the train.

Let us return to the column. It is near sunset, the bugles sound the halt, and the columns file off into camp. The cavalry horses are sent out to graze, the tents put up, fires lighted and the suppers put on to cook. The white canvas gleams in the setting sun, and the camp resounds with mirth and laughter. Water is brought from the brook, and soap and towels are in great demand to remove the dust and stains of travel. Folding chairs, tables, beds, mattresses, are opened out, and carpets spread on the ground. The butchers have slaughtered a beef or two, and the fresh meat is brought in for distribution. The commissary wagons are opened, and sugar, coffee, rice, hominy, and canned fruits dealt out. In an hour we sit down to a smoking hot dinner and supper of roast beef, hot coffee, fried potatoes, fresh biscuit, and canned peaches. If the air is cool the little peaked Sibley stoves are put up, and the evening is spent in telling stories, playing cards, and singing songs. Here is heard the thrumming of a guitar; there are a lot of officers playing euchre, and yonder a group of soldiers gathered about their camp-fire telling tales of how they campaigned in Oregon, or fought the Comanches and Apaches in Texas and New Mexico twenty years ago.

The bugles sound tattoo, the rolls are called, taps blow, the lights are put out, and the busy camp sinks into stillness. Only here and there a light is left burning, where the quartermaster in his tent is busy over his papers, the adjutant making the orders for the morrow's march, or a noisy trio of officers continuing to a late hour their jests and songs. No soldier is allowed to have his light burning after taps, but the officers can do as they please.

[Pg 93]

Every one sleeps soundly, for each knows he is well guarded. It is near midnight, and, if you like, we will walk about the camp a little. Here is the officer of the day, and we will accompany him. We go out to the edge of the camp, where a large group of men are gathered about a blazing fire. "Who comes there?" rings out upon the still night air. "Friends," is answered back. "Advance one and be recognized." This is done, and then comes the cry of "Officer of day, turn out the guard". There is a rattling of muskets, a hurrying and bustling to and fro, and the guard falls into line and is inspected—so far as to ascertain that all are present and every thing right. Frequently an officer, but most generally a sergeant of experience, commands the guard, and all the sentinels are posted according to the directions of the officer of the day, who receives his instructions from the commanding officer.

The wagons are drawn up in long lines or semicircles, with the tongues inward, to which are tied the mules and oxen. Sentinels pace up and down to see that all goes right, and rouse the teamsters to tie up the mules that are constantly getting loose. The cry of "loose mules" will bring a dozen teamsters out of their wagons, and at least a hundred oaths before the animal is caught and secured. The cavalry wagons are placed twenty to thirty feet apart, and long ropes drawn through the hind wheels, to which are picketed the horses. Guards are everywhere, and the sentinels are keenly on the alert. Each hill-top has its silent watcher. The herds are kept where there is as much grass as possible, and mounted herders constantly watch them, ready for an Indian alarm or a stampede. A cry of "Indians, Indians," produces great life and commotion among the herders, guards, and sentinels, but the body of the camp does not deign to move unless the firing is very[Pg 94] heavy, and the order given to "turn out". This is the Regular Army on the march.

When the troops enter the Indian country, and the attacks become frequent, the column marches more compactly; the herds and wagons are kept well up; the women and children are put among the infantry; flankers thrown out, and a howitzer sent to the front to throw shells and frighten off the savages. The boom of a cannon seems to be the voice of advancing civilization, and greatly terrifies the Indians.

At last the line of country that is to be occupied has been reached, and a fort is built. This consists of a stockade, log-houses, and shelters for the stores. Then the troops are divided, and another fort is built fifty or a hundred miles from the first, and so on until the whole line is "occupied". If there is danger, earthworks are thrown up, and one or two pieces mounted. Now begins the work in earnest; keeping open the communication between the forts; getting up supplies from the rear, and securing the way for immigration. The country is mapped, the land surveyed, the streams looked up and named, and saw-mills built. Settlers come in and open farms near the forts, and they creep up and down the valleys, and over the hills, until they stretch away for hundreds of miles. Meanwhile, there are Indian battles, surprises, and massacres by scores. Hundreds lose their lives, but the settlements go on. There is a little grocery, a rum shop, a town, and by and by a city.

Every spring, as soon as the grass grows, the cavalry takes the field and scours over the country for hundreds of miles. The infantry remains in the posts, or guards trains to and fro. From April until December, the cavalry is on the go constantly, and the officers are separated from their families. When the snows fall they come into the forts to[Pg 95] winter, but are often routed out by the approach of their savage foes, and made to march hundreds of miles when the thermometer is far below zero. It is this that makes the troops so savage, and often causes them to slaughter the Indians without mercy. After a long and hard summer's campaign, the officers and men come in tired, weary, and only too glad to rejoin their families and rest, when scarcely have they removed the saddles from their horses' backs, when murders, robberies, and burnings announce the approach of the fierce foe, and they are ordered out for a winter campaign. Full of rage and chagrin, they go forth breathing vengeance on all Indians, and after toiling a month or more, through ice and snow, with freezing hands, feet, and ears, they overtake the savages and punish them with terrible severity.

In this way our great western plains are opened to civilization. Every year millions of acres are added to our national domain. The wild prairie with its countless buffaloes and its skulking, murderous war-parties of red men becomes the frontier; the frontier becomes the settled farms and villages; the iron horse and the telegraph connect it with the great East; and still the pioneer and the army push ahead to open up still more of the richest land in the world to the conquering axe and plow of the Anglo-Saxon.

From "Belden the White Chief".

Pupils should be prepared to recite on the following topics:

1. Moving west, then moving west again.
2. What an army train carried.
3. The work of the pioneer corps.
4. An army camp at night
[Pg 96]     (a) Supper.
    (b) Changing the guard.
    (c) How the camp was protected.
5. Development of a fort into a settlement.
6. Summary.

Write answers to the following questions:

1. Who of your relations might have been one of these soldiers; your older brother, your father, your grandfather, or your great grandfather?

2. Name three kinds of food that we eat every day that come from the part of the country opened as described in this selection.

3. Tell some of the sounds you might have heard if you had been sleeping in one of the wagons when camped for the night.


Here is another exercise that will help you see how well you can arrange words in groups. What kind of list is the first group of words below? Do all the words under figure 1 belong in that list? Would it be a better list without the word velvet? Write velvet on the first line of your paper.

In each group of words, there is one that does not belong there. Find the misplaced word in each group, writing one under the other. You have now made a new list of words of one class by taking one word out of each group. Pick out a good heading for this new list and write it as the top.

1. 2. 3. 4. 5.
corn copper satin teaching horse
velvet tin coasting surveying sheep
potatoes muslin swimming building oxen
wheat lead tennis linen dog
barley brass skating mining silk
beets gold football printing cattle

[Pg 97]


We think little of kings and princes nowadays. They appear chiefly in our fairy stories when we know they are pure creations of somebody's imagination. Possibly some of you have wished you had been born a prince or princess. This story will give you a glimpse of the real life of a prince who was the son of one of the most powerful kings of England.

Almost everybody knows something about Queen Elizabeth, the famous queen who made England such a powerful country long ago in the sixteenth century. And almost everybody knows something about her older sister, Queen Mary, who caused so much sorrow to England because of religious persecution. But not nearly so many people know about their younger brother, King Edward the Sixth, who came to the throne before either of his sisters, and whose short life was full of burdens and anxieties. This story tells something about the way in which a boy had to be educated if he was going to be a king. You will see that he had very little chance for freedom or happiness.

Read the story through quickly, and then glance back and make an outline of it. Your teacher will let two or three of you tell the story from the outline you have made.

Almost four hundred years ago all London was rejoicing because of the birth of a prince, the son of the wicked Henry the Eighth. To be sure, Henry had two other children, Mary and Elizabeth; but there were reasons, it was thought, why neither of them could inherit the throne. So the people were glad when little Edward was born; anthems of joy were sung in all the churches; bonfires were lit, and bells rang.

Three days later, when the baby prince was baptized, the way from the palace to the chapel was hung with silk and velvet and cloth of gold, and lined with torch-bearers. Noble lords held a shining canopy over his head, and others[Pg 98] carried the towels and basins needed in the ceremony. His sister Mary, a gracious lady of twenty-one, was his godmother, the archbishop was his godfather, and little red-haired Elizabeth, only four years old, also had a share in the ceremony.

Ten days later joy was turned to mourning, for the Queen died, and little Prince Edward was left motherless. The baby, however, had a kind nurse and many servants, four of whom were called "rockers", as it was then thought right to rock a baby in his cradle or in the arms. All these servants were charged to watch and guard the Prince night and day lest any harm should befall him, for, as King Henry said, he was "the whole realm's most precious jewel".

While Edward was a little child he lived chiefly in the country, and was brought up till he was six years old by the women of the household. After that he had learned men for his schoolmasters, and they taught him languages, philosophy, and such art and science as were known at the time. Such studies sound like very grown-up lessons for a little boy, do they not? A large part of education in those days consisted of Greek and Latin. Both Edward and his sister Elizabeth were very fond of books, and many were the happy mornings that the two children spent together over their lessons.

Besides his sister, Edward had other school companions. In order that he might not be alone, several boys, the sons of noblemen, were brought up in the palace along with the Prince. One of them, it is said, was known as Edward's "whipping boy"; that is, if the Prince misbehaved, as he seldom did, this boy was punished for it, as it was not thought proper to punish the Prince himself.

By the time he was eight, the boy could both read and write Latin. He wrote his letters in Latin, and several of[Pg 99] them, along with three of his exercise books, have been handed down to the present time. The books are filled with Greek and Latin exercises. He must have been a clever boy, and must also have studied hard and long.

One winter morning when Edward was nine years old, gentlemen came riding out from London with the news that his father, King Henry, was dead, and that Edward was the new King. He wept bitterly, for to him his father had always been loving and gentle, however cruel he was to others. But the boy could not weep long, for he had to mount his horse and ride to London to be welcomed by the people. The next day all the nobles came and knelt before him to kiss his hand and swear that they would always be loyal. But Edward was still too young to be really king. His father had left the government in the hands of eighteen men whom he named. These men now decided that they would put all the power into the hands of the most important one among them, Edward's uncle, the Duke of Somerset, who should be called Lord Protector.

For a long time hardly a day passed without some tiresome state ceremony to which the little King had to go. You can imagine that he grew very tired of so much showing off. At last came the coronation. The day before it, King Edward rode through the streets in solemn procession, clad in a suit of white velvet and silver, adorned with pearls and diamonds. The trappings of his horse were crimson and gold embroidered with pearls. The progress of the procession was very slow, lasting from noon till nightfall; for in every open space was a raised platform hung with gay curtains, where a company of actors, acrobats, or singing children would give some kind of exhibition which the King must stay to watch. One thing that we must suppose he particularly liked was a wonderful tightrope[Pg 100] walker. But after all, he was only a little nine-year-old boy, and you can imagine that he was very tired when the long day was over and he went home to bed.

Next day at nine Edward was on his way to Westminster Abbey for the long and splendid ceremony of the coronation, at which he was formally presented to the people and crowned by the Archbishop of Canterbury. After two more days of feasting and celebration, the young King settled down to a quiet life again. But now it was a very lonely life and not so happy a one. He saw little of his sisters; and though he went on with his lessons, they were often interrupted by the business of the state. For though he had no real power, and the Lord Protector actually ruled England, yet the little boy had to go through the form of approving or disapproving of what was done.

Now the Duke of Somerset was very ambitious, and since he had so much of the power of a king, he began to act and to talk as if he were really king. This made some people angry and other people jealous. One of the jealous ones was Lord Seymour, the Protector's brother. Somerset was very stern with Edward, and kept him very short of money, so Seymour tried to win the young King's liking by kindness and by gifts of pocket-money, which kings like as well as other boys. But Seymour's enemies were too strong for him; he was shut up in the tower, and Somerset so influenced the child king that he consented to have his kind uncle condemned to death. It seems a pity that a boy so wise and good should have been so cold-hearted. It must have been because all the men around him were hard and cold; if he had only not been a king he might have been warm and loving and full of gratitude for kindness.

Meantime Somerset went on being more and more proud and ambitious and making more and more people hate him.[Pg 101] Finally, after he had put down two rebellions by very cruel means, another nobleman, the Duke of Northumberland, formed a plot to kill Somerset and become Protector himself. When Somerset heard this, he went to Edward's palace, and frightened the boy into going away with him on his flight. He thought that the people would spare his own life out of love and respect for Edward, and like a coward he used the young King as a shield. It was dusk when they set out, and the crowded courtyard of the palace was alight with moving torches and glittering armor. Confused and alarmed by the champing of the horses, the rattle of steel, and the sound of voices, the boy cried out, "I pray, good people, be good to us and to our uncle."

Then Somerset made a long, angry speech to the people, telling them that he knew of the plot to kill him and seize the King. He finished his speech in truly cowardly fashion. "I tell you," he said, "if anything is attempted against me, here," pointing to the King, "is he who shall die before me."

The King and his uncle fled away safely to Windsor. They rode almost all night, and arrived at dawn. Nothing was ready for them; they were not expected, and there was neither food nor fire. The October nights were cold, and the boy, who was never strong, fell ill of cold and weariness and fear. At Windsor he lived closely guarded, and felt as if he were in prison, for the place was then only a fortress, not a beautiful castle as it is now.

He did not stay long at Windsor, however. Somerset's enemies came after him, and presented to Edward all their charges against the cruel, ambitious Protector. Edward seems to have listened to them very readily, and not to have tried to save his uncle when he was taken and shut up in the Tower of London. And later, when Somerset was beheaded, the King cared little about his uncle's fate. It[Pg 102] seems strange that so lovable a boy should have said not one word of regret, even though he had never liked his uncle.

So, in the midst of anxiety and strife and scenes that hardened his boyish heart, Edward grew to be fifteen years old. He was now beginning to take great interest in the government, and to show that he had a mind and will of his own. Yet, King though he was, he still went on with lessons. So earnest was he that he was held up to all the boys of England, as an example. At the same time, however, he liked to play, though he had sadly little chance for it. He played a game something like baseball, and tennis, and was fond of archery as a sport.

You will be interested to read what were the things that a boy who was to be a king had learned by the time he was fifteen. He could speak and write Latin and French as well as English. He read Greek, Italian, and Spanish. He had studied the geography of his own country thoroughly, and knew all about the chief ports of England, Ireland, Scotland, and France. He had studied fortifications, and the places where they needed to be built or strengthened. He astonished his advisers by the intelligence with which he could talk about affairs of state.

It seems likely, does it not, that Edward would have made an excellent King if ever he had taken the government into his own hands? For the only fault that shows plainly in him is his coldness of heart. But he had never been strong, and before he was sixteen he became very ill, as a result of a cough that he had had for a long time. He had not strength to fight off the disease; so, patiently and gently as he had lived, the boy King died. He had had a chance to be neither a real boy nor a real King.

Adapted from "Boy-Kings and Girl-Queens",    
by H. E. Marshall.

[Pg 103]


One of the things that made President Lincoln great was his kindness in small things. Here is a story, told by a man who saw the incident take place, that gives an instance of such kindness.

You should all begin reading this story at the same moment. At the end of one minute your teacher will ask you to close your books and answer the questions she asks.

One day President Lincoln was met in the park between the White House and the War Department by an irate, crippled soldier, who was swearing in a high key, cursing the Government from the President down. Mr. Lincoln paused and asked him what was the matter.

"Matter enough," was the reply. "I want my money. I have been discharged here, and can't get my pay."

Mr. Lincoln asked if he had his papers, saying that he used to practice law in a small way, and possibly could help him. The soldier rather ungraciously said that he had the papers.

My friend and I stepped behind some convenient shrubbery where we could watch the result. Mr. Lincoln took the papers from the hands of the angry soldier, and sat down with him at the foot of a convenient tree, where he examined them carefully, and writing a line on the back, told the soldier to take them to Mr. Potts, Chief Clerk of the War Department, who would doubtless attend to the matter at once.

After Mr. Lincoln had left the soldier, we stepped out and asked him if he knew whom he had been talking with. "Some ugly old fellow who pretends to be a lawyer," was the reply. My companion asked to see the papers, and on their being handed to him, pointed to the indorsement they had received. To the soldier's great surprise and confusion, this indorsement read:

[Pg 104]

"Mr. Potts, attend to this man's case at once and see that he gets his pay. A. L."


1. Why was Mr. Lincoln willing to help the soldier?

2. Why didn't he tell the soldier who he was?

3. Is there a joke in this story? If so, whom was the joke on?


Arrange your paper with your name on the first line and your grade on the second line. Do not write anything on the third line, but on the next six lines, write in the margin the numbers 1 to 6.

Below are six lists of words. All the words included in each list are related in some way. For instance, all the words in the first list name colors—

red  yellow  orange

After figure 1 on your paper write two other words that might be included in this list of colors. Any two color-words will be correct.

Now in the same way find out what kind of words are included in the second list and after figure 2 write two words that could be added to this list. Complete the exercise by adding to each of the remaining lists in the same manner. When you finish, wait quietly for the others.

1. red, yellow, orange.

2. wash, scrub, dust.

3. trolley car, bicycle, carriage.

4. desk, picture, bookcase.

5. Marion, Louise, Ruth.

6. harp, piano, cornet.

[Pg 105]


You may have one minute in which to read this selection.

The Indians of our "American Sahara" are compelled by circumstances to overcome conditions not encountered by their brothers of the plains and mountains.

The "fire bed" is among the most useful and original methods employed by them to "sleep warm", in the "open", as in fall and spring the nights are very cold.

A shallow trench is "scooped out" in the sand, about six feet in length, three feet wide, and six or eight inches deep. The sand is "banked up" on the sides, and a fire is then made in the "pit", covering the entire length. This not only warms the bottom but the banked sides as well.

After the fire has burned long enough to warm the sand thoroughly, the larger unburned sticks are thrown out, but all live coals are left in the pit. The sand on the sides is now covered over the coals to a depth of about four inches. The "sleeper" will then lie down in the warm sand; and, if he possesses a blanket, he will throw it over him, thus keeping in the heat, and will sleep warm.

I have tried this out myself many times, both upon the desert and in the mountains, and have never suffered from the cold.

"Boy Scouts' Year Book."    
Courtesy of D. Appleton and Company.

Describe to your teacher how the Desert Indians are able to sleep out of doors in warm beds.


1. All dogs have a keen sense of smell. My pet animal has a keen sense of smell; do you know that my pet is a dog?

2. It took George six minutes to finish his exercise correctly. John finished in five minutes, but most of his answers were wrong. Was George the better reader?

[Pg 106]


You should all begin reading at the same moment. Your teacher will announce before you begin how much time she is going to give you. She will divide the class into three equal groups according to speed and find out which group writes the best answers to the questions at the end of this selection.


Pietro Vittori was playing in the shade of an olive grove on a mountain side that overlooked the sea near Naples. Just below him was a white road that stretched away into the distance for many miles. Far below the road the blue water sparkled in the sunshine. It was a beautiful spot. Pietro, who had never been far from the olive grove and the mountain side, supposed that all the world was like it.

As he looked at the road, he saw a little cloud of dust in the distance; soon a motor car moved slowly along the road until it came to a stop. The driver and a man on the seat behind him got out and busied themselves about the car. They looked at the long slope of the road before them and shook their heads.

Drawn by curiosity, Pietro moved nearer and nearer until he stood beside the road. He could see that something was wrong, but he understood no word that the strangers spoke. Suddenly the glance of the man fell on the bright-eyed, barefoot lad, and he asked Pietro a question. His voice was kindly, but Pietro could only shake his head. Then the man laughed and patted Pietro's brown curls. He led the boy to the side of the car, and pointed to a tank beneath the seat of the driver.

This time Pietro understood; he knew that the tank contained the wonderful fluid that made the car go. This car could go no farther because the supply of the wonderful fluid was used up. It was all plain enough, and he knew what he could do to help. His dark eyes shone brightly as he looked up at the man.

[Pg 107] Si, Si, Signore! He Cried Eagerly

"Si, Si, Signore!" He Cried Eagerly

"Si, si, signore!" he cried, eagerly; and in an instant[Pg 108] more he was flying up the long slope, until at last he was out of sight round a curve. The driver of the car started to follow him, but soon gave up the attempt, for it was very hot. All the way to the village Pietro ran as fast as his bare feet would carry him—two kilometres or more.

It was nearly an hour before Pietro came hurrying back. With him was the man from the shop in the village, and he bore a filled can in either hand. The travelers were patiently waiting. They could do nothing else, for their only hope lay in Pietro, unless by chance another motor car should come along.

When they were ready to start again, the man patted Pietro's curly head once more, and slipped some bright silver coins into his hand—to the great surprise of Pietro, who had never seen other coins than those made of copper. Then the man leaped to his seat, and the whole party waved their hands to Pietro, and called out gayly to him in their strange language; then the car sped out of sight. Then Pietro hurried up through the olive grove to his little home, where the bright silver coins surprised his parents even more than they had surprised him.

Now that was only a small adventure; but adventures were few in Pietro's life, and so he thought of it often through the weeks and months that followed. A year later, with his parents and his brothers and sisters, he went over the mountains to Naples, and sailed in a great ship across the ocean to Boston; and all that meant so many adventures that he almost forgot his long run over the hot and dusty road to help the strangers.

[Pg 109]


Pietro had lived in the North End of Boston about two years, when he had another adventure. Late one afternoon, toward the end of November, he was walking slowly along the street on his way home from school. His heart was heavy. At school he had just been learning the story of Thanksgiving, and he had heard much about Thanksgiving celebrations; but he knew that there would be no Thanksgiving dinner in the crowded little rooms where he lived, for the family was large, and his father had long been without work.

As two men passed him, one said to the other, "How this part of Boston has changed! I thought I could take you straight to the Old North Church, but I seem to be getting lost."

Pietro sprang to the man's side. "I know the way!" he cried. "Let me show you! And I can tell you all about the church where Paul Revere hung the lanterns."

The two men looked down, and laughed. "That is the way with the little Italian boys; they soon become real Americans," said the one who had spoken first. "We shall be glad to have you guide us," he added to Pietro.

So Pietro proudly walked before them, and led the way, first to the historic church, and then to the old cemetery on Copp's Hill, near by. All this time the man was watching him curiously. "I think you and I have met before," he said at length. "Do you remember me?"

For the first time Pietro looked long and hard at the man's face. Then he cried out, "Yes, yes! I did not see before! You were the man in the car that stopped on the Amalfi road." He fairly danced for pleasure that the strange man had remembered him so long. Then he hurried on: "See![Pg 110] I can talk with you now! I am an American! I go to school!"

"You see," said the man laughingly, as he turned to his friend, "I can remember the face of a bright Italian boy better than I can the streets of my own city."

Then he told his friend of the help that Pietro had given when the motor car stopped on the Italian mountain side. With a few questions, he drew from Pietro his own story, and he watched the brown-eyed boy closely as they talked.

"Pietro," he said, at last, "I like you, and I want to be your friend. Keep on in school and study. Come and see me to talk things over once in a while. I'll be able to help you when it is time for you to go to work. In the meantime I can find work for your father." He gave Pietro his address, and checked the words of thanks that came pouring out. "And this," the man went on, "will give you all a Thanksgiving dinner as a reward for your work as guide this afternoon."

A bill was pressed into Pietro's hand, and the men hurried on. Pietro stood where they left him, and looked first at the bill in his hand, and then at the two men, who turned and waved their hands as they went round a corner.

So it came about that the fortunes of the Vittori family took a sudden change for the better, and there was a happy Thanksgiving dinner in their tenement—all as a result of Pietro's cheerful readiness to be of help three years before, when strangers were in trouble on an Italian mountain side.

John Clair Minot.    
Courtesy of "The Youth's Companion".


1. Near what city did the first part of this story take place?

2. In what city did the second part occur?

[Pg 111]

3. What service did Pietro do for the travelers in the first part?

4. What happened to Pietro between the first and second parts of the story?

5. Did Pietro do anything in the second part of the story similar to what he did in the first?

6. Do you think the American gentleman had a good memory?

7. Pietro was very polite and obliging, wasn't he? What two good things did he do for his family by being so?

8. What do you think "Si, si, signore" means? Why are these three words printed in italics?


You should all begin reading this selection at the same moment.

Can you read it thoroughly in thirty seconds?

Not all the good soldiers in the American army which helped to win the World War were in the trenches, or even in France. And they were not all young men. See if you do not think the following occurrence proves the truth of this statement.

In October, 1918, shortly before the war ended, one hundred and fifty mine workers, who had retired from service after earning enough to support themselves in their old age, returned to the mines at Stoneboro, Pennsylvania, when they learned of the shortage of men during the war. They mined four thousand tons of coal while they waited for the railway siding to be completed to the new opening where they were to work.

—"Youth's Companion."


Why is it right to call these men patriotic?

Is that kind of patriotism needed only in war time?

[Pg 112]


It was the early spring time. The snow banks were melting away, leaving the brown earth soft enough for the flowers to push through as soon as they felt the warmth of the sun.

Across the high hill, which sloped down to the river, came a pair of foxes. The splendid Silver Fox, with a black mark across the eyes like a mask, was called Domino. The dainty little lady fox by his side, with a red coat and an elegant ruffle of white, was Snowyruff. They had met one day in the woods, and chosen each other for mates and friends for life, as is the way of foxes. Now they were searching through the woods for a place to build their home.

Snowyruff looked about the piney glade, nosed the ground, then began to dig. It was her way of saying, "I am satisfied. We'll set up housekeeping here."

She did not know that she had chosen the same sunny slope on which Domino himself had lived as a tiny cub, but she did know that it was a fine place for a home for a family of foxes. The hillside would be sheltered and warm; the den door would be hidden by the pine thicket near.

The deep snow and deep leaves had kept the earth soft enough for her to dig, so she worked away with a will. Domino sat on the hill and kept guard for an hour, then he took her place and worked while Snowyruff kept watch. So, working together, they built their home; a cozy, well-hidden den it was, too. No eye could detect it, though within a dozen feet; and as the warm spring sunshine set the grass growing, it was better hidden each day.

The pair were more and more careful not to be seen near the den. At last one day Snowyruff said to Domino: "Keep away now!" and he kept away from the den for[Pg 113] days. While he was absent a wonderful thing happened: Five little foxes were born! When Snowyruff left them to slip down to the river for a cooling drink of water, Domino was there on the bank watching. She said to him in plain Fox language: "You must not come home yet," so he crouched with his head flat on the leaves, and she hurried back to the den.

The next day when she was hungry, she ate some of the food which they had stored up in the dry sand of the side chamber of the den. Two days later, she went to the door, and there was a pile of food—Domino had stolen down and left it for her and their babies. After that, every day, there was food at the door, or hidden in the grass near by.

When the cubs were nine days old their eyes opened, they whimpered less, and Snowyruff felt it safer to leave them. Domino now came in to see his family, and a proud father he was. He guarded them with the greatest care, and was as devoted to them as Mother Snowyruff herself.

When they were about a month old, the little toddlers were brought out into the sunlight in front of the den. There they romped and wrestled and raced with each other. Sometimes they chased flies or bumble-bees, sometimes they made a fine game of catching Mother's tail, or tussled over a dried duck's wing.

As the days passed and the young foxes grew stronger, Domino and Snowyruff began teaching them to find food for themselves. Live game was brought home each day. Sometimes a frog, or a fat field mouse, was brought, and then turned loose for the youngsters to re-capture. Once Domino called, "Chur-chur-chur," and when the rollicking cubs came tumbling over one another, he dropped a live muskrat in their midst. They pounced on it, but the muskrat was a desperate fighter. It seemed for a time that he[Pg 114] would win, but the father and mother only looked on. They must let their children learn to do hard things for themselves, so they waited until one cub was strong enough and quick enough to lay the muskrat low.

The happy growing days went by, and the cubs had not learned the meaning of fear. One day Domino was returning home with food. Five little black noses, ten little beady eyes, set in woolly heads, were bunched at the den door. Suddenly the bay of a hound sounded near and Domino leaped on a stump to listen. There was no mistake; the hound was coming nearer the home place. Snowyruff warned the little ones, and Domino loped bravely out to meet his enemy. He showed himself boldly, and even barked defiance at the big hound, then dashed away, leading him farther and farther from the den.

Domino ran hard for an hour, then began trying to throw the hound off his trail, but it was not easy. The hound was swift and keen in following the trail, and though he doubled, crossed, and tried every trick he knew, Domino could not throw him off. The fox ran lightly ahead, the hound crashing heavily after him, baying loudly. At last Domino led his enemy along a narrow ledge which ran at the edge of a cliff overhanging the river.

On they went. Domino was growing very tired. His steps were lagging so that the hound was gaining upon him at every jump. Up and up they went; Domino went slower still. The hound could see him just ahead. He drew closer with each bound. At last Domino reached the top of the cliff. His black coat gleamed against the sky. He could go no farther; it was the end of the trail. The hound plunged forward, and leaped at the fox; but Domino sprang lightly aside, and the hound plunged headlong over the rugged cliff. He was hurled down into the icy flood below. He swam out as best he could, battered and bleeding, and limped home, whining with pain. Domino turned back and ran to the den, where five little black noses, ten little beady eyes, set in five little woolly heads, waited for their father.

[Pg 115] Live Game Was Brought Home Each Day

Live Game Was Brought Home Each Day

The hound never came back again, and the Fox family[Pg 116] lived in peace until the little foxes grew large enough to leave the home den and make homes for themselves.

From "Stories for Children and How to Tell Them".    
Courtesy of J. Berg Esenwein.


1. What kind of home does a fox build for his family?

2. What kind of lessons did the Fox children have to be taught?

3. What did Domino do that reminds you of what a human father would do for his family?

4. Make a list of the things the Fox family did that seem almost human.


Here is just one "movie" scene, just enough to fill up this page. If you have forgotten how to play it, refer to the directions on page 38.

"Ha," said the giant as he stooped down and picked up something. "Here is the key." Then he unbolted the door and walked into the vault where he saw chests of gold and silver arranged along the wall. He marked dozens of them with the chalk that he had in his pocket. When he had finished, he put a purse full of diamonds in his pocket, swung a bag full of money over his shoulder, and went out without another word, locking the terrified steward in.

[Pg 117]


One of the facts discovered by a student of nature is that every part of an animal's body is fitted to perform its special task, and to help the animal live in the surroundings where it finds its home. Notice three ways in which the mole's bodily equipment is fitted to the life he leads.

"Dig" is expressed in every line of the mole's body. Digging is his life-work, and to this Nature has adapted his every organ. His eyes are of no use in this underground life, and so they have dwindled away until externally there is little sign of them. Objects he probably never sees with any distinctness, though he still can tell light from darkness. But he seems to recognize light only to avoid it. In the darkness of his tunnels not only would his eyes be useless, but dirt would be apt to get into them while he is digging; so they are gradually leaving him.

The ears, too, or that part of them that projects from the head, would be in the way. So they have been discarded. The inner and most important part of the ear, however, still remains, and the mole hears quite well.

His most remarkable difference from ordinary animals is in the arms. These are very short, and the hands are broad, hard, and horny, and have very firm claws. When I catch a good, vigorous mole, I find I scarcely have force enough in my thumb and forefinger to hold his front feet together. He can often separate them in spite of all my straining. His other muscles are comparatively weak. The hands have been altered into great shovels, and when he tries to walk over smooth, level ground or on a floor he moves with odd, quick steps, resting on the sides and not on the palms of his hands. He reminds one of a wound-up toy that is held in the air and allowed to run down. But[Pg 118] when he gets under the sod, the heaving line that forms over him as he digs shows that there he is in his proper element. Most animals would get dirty leading such a life, but you never see a cleaner animal than the mole. He comes out of the loose earth and squirms about a little, and he is clean. His smooth gray fur, shading to a silvery hue when it is ruffled, is very short and close and exceedingly dry. Indeed I know no animal with a more velvety coat. He would be a delightful pet to handle were it not for his ceaseless wriggling. Then too he carries a strong musky odor. This latter, indeed, is his only defence and I fear it is a poor one. Certainly it does not usually deter a dog from snapping him up. But perhaps it is meant for his friends rather than his foes. Friendly moles may scent each other from afar.

The mole is a reversible machine. He can run forward or backward at will. Probably as a result of this habit, it is wonderful how alike are the two ends of his body, his nose and his tail. Each is slender and each is bare; each is very sensitive, and the tail is just about as long as the nose. I think he uses whichever happens to precede, as a feeler, when he is making his way through his tunnel. For once having made a good big runway, he is very apt to keep on using it through the season. I doubt not he is often forced to travel backwards through his burrow. Then his tail must serve him as an effective guide.

From "Under the Open Sky", by S. C. Schmucker.    
Courtesy of J. B. Lippincott Co.


1. Explain what the author means by saying, "The mole is a reversible machine."

2. How long did it take you to read this selection?

[Pg 119]


Ever since the World's War began, we have heard a great deal about Belgium, the gallant little country which saved the world, and Holland, her sturdy neighbor which stayed neutral. Both these small countries were once called the Netherlands. "Nether" means "lower"; you can see how suitable a name "lower lands" is for a country that is much of it below sea level. Until the fifteenth century this country had no one ruler, but was cut up into many little parts, each governed by a duke or count. Here is the story of a kind count, who ruled in one part of the land in the twelfth century.

In the twelfth century there ruled in Bruges a certain Count Bordewyn, whose fathers had reigned for many years before him. Bruges, in those days, was one of the most important centres of the Netherlands, and the count was a kind and good man whose only thought was to make his people happy. In order that they might not be afraid to tell him their needs, he went about among them dressed as a farmer and a peasant; and they, thinking he was one of themselves, spoke out freely in his presence. One night he left his castle, and, poorly dressed, went out into the country to see if there was any good he could do. It was a dark, cold night, and after walking for some time he was glad to see the lights of a house in the distance. When he reached the building, he knocked at the door and went in. He found himself at a wedding-party given by a farmer whose daughter had been married that day. The good count was very happy to be of the party, and without letting the people know who he was, he sat down with them and sang and feasted. It was very late when they, much against their will, let him leave them, and he walked back through the lonely country, making plans for his people's happiness.

[Pg 120]

Suddenly he heard a whistle, and five men rushed out from a clump of trees and threw themselves upon him. The Count struggled to the trees, set his back against one and prepared to fight. The robbers were armed with knives, but the Count had only a big stick. On they rushed at him. He struck at the first one with all his strength, and hit him so hard that he fell to the ground. Another one crept up to his side, and would have cut his head open; but the Count turned quickly, and, catching the stroke on his stick, snatched the knife from the robber's hand, and with a blow sent him to join his comrade senseless on the ground. This left three against one, and the Count felt his strength giving way under their blows. Still full of courage, he swung the stick round his head to keep the wretches at a distance, and, as loudly as he could, he prayed to God to send him help. At this moment he saw dimly outlined against the darkness a human figure. In its hands it wielded a strange weapon, which soon was falling again and again on the heads and shoulders of the three bandits until they took to their heels and ran. At first the Count thought it was some angel from heaven come to his help, but as the figure drew nearer he saw that it was a farmer, and that the mysterious weapon was a flail.

The Count and the farmer embraced each other, and for a moment did not speak. Then said the Count, "My brave fellow! How can I thank you? You have saved my life!"

But the farmer would not listen to his thanks; "No, no," said he; "I have done only what you would have done for me in the same circumstances, and nothing more need be said. I take it that you are a merchant earning a living for your wife and family, as I try to do for mine."

But the Count insisted that the farmer should ask some favor. "Listen!" said he; "I am in the service of the Count, and perhaps can do you some great good."

[Pg 121] The Robbers Were Armed With Knives

The Robbers Were Armed With Knives

For a time the farmer was silent, and then, hesitating[Pg 122] very much, he told the Count his dearest wish. "For thirty years I have worked on a piece of land; with this flail I have beaten the corn, and I have loved the farm as my child. Yesterday my master died, and the land will pass into strange hands and out of my care."

The Count had listened quietly to his story, and at last spoke: "But, my friend, this is not such a difficult matter. How would you like the land for your own?"

The poor farmer wept with emotion. "Really, is it possible that you have such influence?" said he.

"Come to the castle to-morrow," said the Count, "and ask for the Captain of the Guard."

And the farmer, mystified and wondering, went slowly home. When his wife opened the door, she was very angry with him for being so late; but Cornelius—that was the farmer's name—explained what had happened, and although the wife could scarcely believe that such good fortune could be theirs, yet they went to bed full of hope.

At daybreak Cornelius dressed in his best and set off for the castle, followed by the prayers and blessings of his wife. When he arrived he was so frightened that he could hardly speak to the big soldiers who guarded the door, but at last he gave his message and asked to see the Captain. He followed the soldier into a splendid hall richly hung with tapestries, and soon the man whose life he had saved came into the room. He was dressed so beautifully in silk and cloth of gold that Cornelius hardly recognized him, and when he did he was afraid to ask his question. But his friend told him not to fear, that the Count was favorable to him.

[Pg 123]

He led the trembling Cornelius through many rooms and at last stopped outside a big door. "In this hall you will see the Count. Ask for what you wish," he said.

But Cornelius said he was so much afraid that he dared not ask. "Besides, how shall I know the Count from all his followers?" he inquired.

And the answer was that all the people in the room would kneel, bare-headed, except Count Bordewyn himself. So Cornelius followed his guide into the great hall where all the Court was assembled in grandeur, and, looking round him, he perceived that the only persons standing were himself and the man whose life he had saved. Seeing this, he at once knew that this man was the Count, and he flung himself on his knees and begged forgiveness for his presumption in speaking to him as he had done. But the Count, taking his hands, raised him to his feet and embraced him, and telling his Court the history of the previous night, he commanded them to treat Cornelius with every respect. He gave him the farm and land for his own, and stocked it with grain and cattle.

From "A Peep at the Netherlands,"    
by Beatrix Jungman.

1. What was the Count's object in going about in disguise?

2. What do you think he gained by it?

3. What risks did he run?

4. Do you think the farmer deserved so great a reward?

5. What is a flail? You can find out from the story, without using a dictionary.

6. Do you suppose the Count's people loved him? Why?

7. What difference do you see between the way the subjects of the Count treated him in his castle and the way Americans would treat their mayor, governor, or president?

8. Name the three scenes in this story.

[Pg 124]


You are now going to read a chapter of history. It will help you to see how our ancestors learned some things that are very common to us today, but which had to be learned before the wonderful comforts we enjoy were possible.

You will like to study history if you keep in mind that it does not just tell of something that happened a long time ago, but that it shows how our civilization with its homes and schools and churches and government and our great railroads and steamships and factories came into existence. The thing we call civilization has grown and changed in thousands of years much as you have grown and changed in the few years that you can remember.

You will need to read this selection very carefully. Your teacher will ask you the questions at the end and probably a good many more. See if you can read it the first time so thoroughly that you can answer all the questions. It will help you very much if you will write topics as you go along. In the fourth paragraph you will find a list of things that man has always needed. If you use each of these things as a heading and under it make a list of the steps of man's progress, you will probably find that you have mastered the selection.

History is the story of what men have done in the past. It was not until men had learned how to write that they could keep a record of what they did. But men lived upon the earth for many thousand years before they knew how to write. In that early time they learned how to do many things which we are still doing and to make many things which we are still making and using. In these ways they did much to make life what it is for us.

How is it possible for us to know anything about what life was like in those ancient times when men could not write? Did you ever find an Indian arrow-head? Perhaps[Pg 125] you have seen a collection of stone arrow-heads and axes. These relics and others like them tell us many things about the people who made them. Then there are people now living, like the natives of Australia or some of the tribes of American Indians, who still use, or used until very recently, these crude stone implements, and who live very much as our own ancestors lived many thousand years ago.

The earliest men lived but little better than the animals in the forest about them. They were without shelter or clothing and had only such food as they could find from day to day. Men have either found or made everything that we now have. Early man possessed a great advantage over all the animals because he had a better brain and a wonderful pair of hands with which he could make the weapons, tools, and other things that he needed.

Men have always needed food, shelter, clothing, and the means of protection against the dangers around them. It took our early ancestors many thousand years to learn how to provide themselves with these simple necessities of life.

At first men lived upon the roots, herbs, wild berries, and fruits in the forest. Sometimes they found birds' nests in the trees and ate the eggs or the young birds. Occasionally they found a dead bird or animal and thus learned to like the taste of flesh. They hunted for shellfish by the seashore and caught fish in the streams and lakes. Then they began to kill the smaller animals with stones or clubs and in this way they became meat eaters. When men had learned how to make knives, spears, and bows and arrows, they could kill the larger animals and get a better supply of food.

For a long time all food was eaten raw, because the use of fire was unknown. We do not know how man discovered fire. He may have kindled it first from a tree set aflame by the lightning. By and by he found that a spark could be[Pg 126] produced by striking two stones together in the right way or that he could make a fire by rubbing two pieces of wood together.

The making of fire was one of the most wonderful inventions in the world. Men could now cook their food. At first they roasted bits of meat before the blaze or in the hot ashes. Later, when they had learned how to make vessels that would hold water, they began to boil all kinds of food over the fire.

For a long time men procured their food by hunting, trapping, and fishing. During this time they began to capture and tame the young of some of the wild animals. Probably the dog was the first domestic animal. The cow was also domesticated at a very early period. Man used her meat and milk for food and her skin for clothing. He made tools and implements out of her bones and horns. No other animal has been more useful to him. The goat and the sheep, the hog and the ass, and later the horse, were tamed by early men long before real history began. After these animals had been domesticated by the hunters and trappers, some men became shepherds and herdsmen and wandered from place to place with their flocks and herds in search of the best pastures.

Presently another step was taken toward civilized life. Men had long known that the seeds of some of the wild grasses and plants were good to eat. Now some one noticed that if these seeds were sown they sprang up and brought forth many more seeds. Then it was discovered that the seeds grew better and yielded a more abundant crop if the ground were broken up and made soft before the seed was sown. Because of these discoveries some men began to be farmers. By cultivation, the wild grasses which grew in the fields or beside the rivers were developed[Pg 127] into wheat, oats, barley, and rice, the great cereals of the world.

When men began to procure their food by cultivating the soil it became necessary for them to remain in the same place in order to gather the harvest when it ripened. They could no longer wander from place to place as they had done when they were only hunters or shepherds. They now began to live in permanent villages and to cultivate the land lying near by. In this way the beginning of farming led to a settled life and the making of permanent homes.

Probably the earliest men had only such shelter from the rain and protection from wild animals as the trees gave them. After a time men began to live in dens and caves in the earth. These people are called the "cave dwellers". Still later men built huts by bending young trees together, weaving branches between them, and covering the whole structure with leaves and bark. When the hut was built of poles covered with the skins of animals it became a tent. Many of the people who wandered from place to place with their flocks and herds dwelt in tents.

When men settled near the fields that they were beginning to cultivate, they built permanent homes of stone plastered with mud or of bricks made of clay and dried in the sun. The roofs were covered with brush or timber. Then fire places and rude chimneys were added to these simple houses, and in other ways man's dwelling place was gradually improved.

The first clothing was probably made from the leaves of trees or from grasses matted together. When man became a good hunter he wore the skins of the animals that he killed. The ancestors of all of us were once clad in skins. The women of those early days used to cure the skins of[Pg 128] small animals by drying them. They then made garments of them by sewing them together with needles of bone and the sinews of animals for thread.

The women scraped and worked the large skins until they were soft and pliable. These they used for clothing, or for blankets, or for the covering of their tents. Still later, the women learned to spin yarn from wool sheared from the sheep and from the thread of the flax which they were beginning to raise. The next step was to weave the yarn and the thread into woolen and linen cloth.

It was because early man had the mind to invent and the hands to make the weapons, tools, and utensils which he needed that he was able to make such progress in procuring food, shelter, and clothing.

Man's first weapon was a club. A stone which he used to crack nuts with probably was his earliest tool. At first he simply found stones of the right shape for his purpose. Then he began to chip a piece of flint until it had a rough edge. Now he had a hatchet as well as a hammer. Because he held this hatchet in his hand it has been called a fist-hatchet. A great many of these fist-hatchets have been found. In the course of time man learned how to use thongs of rawhide to bind handles to his fist-hatchets. Now he had axes and spears.

It was a great day in the long climb toward civilized ways of living when some unknown inventor made the first bow. With arrows tipped with sharp bits of stone, man could now kill the larger animals. Stone knives were used to skin the game. Flint scrapers and other implements were very useful in scraping and softening the skins to fit them for use.

By using pieces of flint with rough edges as saws and files, men began to make tools of horn, bones, and shells. They now possessed daggers and hammers of horn and awls and needles of bone.

[Pg 129] The Evolution of the House

The Evolution of the House

For many thousand years, stone arrow-heads, knives, and[Pg 130] axes were made with rough, chipped edges. This time is sometimes called the Old Stone Age. When men had learned to make better tools of their stone knives and axes by grinding and polishing them to a smooth, sharp edge, they had entered upon the New Stone Age.

The next great forward step in human progress was taken when men discovered metals and began to use them. Copper was the first metal used, but it was soon found that it was too soft for making many articles.

Presently it was discovered that if a little tin were mixed with the copper it made a harder metal called bronze. So many weapons, tools, and ornaments were made of bronze that the time when it was used is called the Bronze Age.

Iron is the most useful of all the metals. It is much harder than bronze and better suited in every way for making tools and implements. It took man a long time to learn how to use it, because it is not so easy to work as copper and bronze. When man made this "king of metals" his servant, he traveled a long, long way on the road which leads to civilization.

The men invented the weapons and some of the tools of the earliest ages. But it is probable that the women first made many useful tools and utensils. Women wove the first baskets to use in gathering and carrying berries, nuts, and other articles of food. They used to cover fish with clay in order to bake them in the coals and they noticed how the fires hardened the clay. Then by molding clay over baskets so that they could be hung over the fire, women gradually learned how to make earthenware pots and bowls. Afterwards they cut spoons, ladles, and drinking cups from[Pg 131] shells, gourds, and the horns of animals. In these ways our foremothers made their first cooking utensils and their first dishes for holding and serving food and drink.

Clay Bowls and Woven Baskets

Clay Bowls and Woven Baskets

Women were not only the first basket-makers and potters. They were also the first spinners and weavers. They ground the first grain into flour with mortars and pestles of stone. Later they made simple mills for this purpose. In fact, women who lived before the dawn of history, began nearly all the household arts and crafts and in this way helped all the people who have lived since then.

Our earliest ancestors, like ourselves, found it necessary to carry things from place to place. But they lived long before the days of the railroad and the steamship. The first burdens were borne by the women. They followed the men who hunted, and carried the meat and the hides of the slain animals back to the camp. After the dog, the[Pg 132] donkey, and the horse had been tamed, articles to be transported were packed upon their backs or dragged upon the ground behind them. Sleds were made in the northern lands. Canoes and boats were built by the dwellers by the rivers and the sea. Last of all, the wheeled cart was invented. All these things are older than history.

We often call our own time the age of invention. The steam engine, the telegraph, and the many uses of electricity are all modern. They have made wonderful changes in our ways of living. But these changes in our lives are not as remarkable as were those made in the lives of our earliest ancestors so long ago by such inventions as the fishhook and the bow and arrow, and such discoveries as how to make fire, how to make pottery, how to domesticate animals and plants, and how to smelt and work the metals.

Nowadays children have homes and are cared for by their parents. Among the very earliest men there was nothing like our homes or our families. Each person found his own food and took care of himself. Of course, mothers cared for their babies, but nobody took care of a child after he was large enough to find his own food. Then he had to shift for himself. When he wanted his breakfast or his dinner he dug roots or hunted for berries, nuts, or acorns. Sometimes he feasted upon birds' eggs or upon a rabbit or a squirrel which he had caught. The honey which he found in the nests of the wild bees was his only candy and he was apt to get well stung in taking it. He lived in constant fear of the wild animals around him and usually slept in a tree for safety. He spent his entire life in this way.

There are many things that people can do better by working together. It took many years for early men to learn to help one another. When they became cave dwellers and learned how to make fire, the first family group began to be formed. This group was called the clan. The clan simply means those who were kin to each other; that is, a number of men and women who believed that they were descended from a common ancestor. At first the common ancestor was a woman, the clan mother. In those days, relationship was always counted on the mother's side. When a man married he went to live with the clan of his wife. In the course of time groups of clans came to be called tribes.

[Pg 133] The Development of Transportation

The Development of Transportation

A long time later, after the animals had been domesticated[Pg 134] and men had come to own flocks and herds and other things that we call property, the father became the head of the family, as we know it today. Our kind of a family with the father as its head existed before history began.

Words had to be invented, just as tools were. At first men had no language. Very slowly they gave names to the things about them and learned to talk to each other. Mothers sang jingles and lullabies to their babies. Around the campfire at night men told how they had hunted the wild beasts. Women talked as they gathered and prepared food or dressed the skins of the wild animals. Mothers wanted their children to be brave and wise, so they told them stories about the bravest and wisest of their clan in the olden time. Perhaps this is why children, and older people too for that matter, have always been fond of stories. In these ways languages grew and the simple beginnings of literature were made.

People have always been fond of ornaments. The earliest men wore necklaces of teeth and claws. Later they made beads of bronze or of gold. The women tried to make their baskets and their clothes as beautiful as possible by coloring them with natural dyes. Some of the men liked to draw pictures of wild animals upon pieces of bone or upon the[Pg 135] walls of their homes in the caves. People learned to count upon their fingers, and to use various parts of their bodies, like the finger, the hand, and the arm, as measures of length. For example, the cubit of which we read in the Bible was the distance from the elbow to the end of the middle finger. Our arts and sciences have grown from such crude and simple beginnings.

Our early ancestors lived in fear of many things about them. They thought that fire, the rivers, the sea, the sun, and many other natural objects were alive and could harm them or help them. So they offered gifts to all these things and prayed to them for help. Early men also believed that the souls of their ancestors lived after death, and that these ancestors could help them or harm them. They thought that if they offered gifts of food, and drink at the graves of their dead, the spirits of the departed would be pleased and would protect the living members of their families. If, on the other hand, the dead were neglected or forgotten they would become evil spirits who might bring great misfortune upon the living. They also thought that if the dead were not properly buried they would become ghosts, haunting the places they had known when they were alive. Because of these ideas early men were very careful to worship their ancestors. The first religions of the world grew out of these beliefs and practices of primitive men with reference to nature and to their own ancestors.

From "Our Beginnings in Europe and America",    
by Smith Burnham.      
Courtesy of The John C. Winston Co.


1. Make a list of the things in everyday life which we take for granted as necessities which the earliest men had to learn how to make.

[Pg 136]

2. What was the earliest important discovery made by man? Do you think this was as important as the discovery of electricity? Why? Name any inventions that have come into common use within your own or your parents' lifetime.

3. Before man discovered fire, what did he eat? Mention two steps by which he came to have better food to eat.

4. Mention in order five kinds of dwellings which the early men lived in, and three kinds of clothing which they wore.

5. What useful things did women do in these early days?

6. Why is your hand more useful than the paw of an animal?

7. From what source did each article of food on your dinner table to-day come? How many people had something to do with this food before it reached you?

8. Compare the clothing of people to-day with that of primitive man. Are we more or less dependent on others for food and clothing than primitive man?

9. We are still making new words. Make a list of words that have come into use since the World War began.


This nonsense test must be worked out carefully or it may fool you. You will need only a small piece of paper for your answers.

1. If your name is Geraldine, or if you are not yet past 37 years of age, or

"If lollypops grow on butternut trees
And godgillies ride on the galloping breeze"—

sign your name anywhere on your paper. Then, if you have signed your name, never mind the second paragraph, but skip to the third.

2. Rub out your name and write the name of the first president of the United States in its stead. Then take the remaining paragraph.

3. Write your name again in some other part of your paper and hand it in.

[Pg 137]


Arrange your paper with your name on the first line and your grade on the second line. Divide the rest of your paper into four parts with lines drawn as shown below. Let the lines be drawn up as far as the third line of your paper.


Write the words, ship building, agriculture, mining, manufacturing, at the top of the four spaces on the fourth line, as shown above.

Below is a long list of words that is not very well arranged. On your paper re-arrange the words so that every word that concerns ship building is placed in the first list, and every word that concerns agriculture is placed in the second list, and every word that concerns mining or manufacturing is placed in its proper list. If you finish before the others wait quietly for them to complete their work.

ore crane mast dock
mill loom bulkheads blast
weaving cultivation drill crop
irrigation keel fertilizer carpets
launch safety-lamp silk dyes
reaping lace soil rigging
riveter pick pump cave-in
shaft spinning anchor shuttle
miner steel plates elevator sowing
harvester grain textiles tractor

[Pg 138]


The table given below tells how much your savings will amount to at four per cent interest compounded semi-annually. One dollar a month is a little less than twenty-five cents a week. From this table, answer the following questions:

1. If you save one dollar a month, how much will you have in three years? Five years? Eight years? Ten years?

2. If you save four dollars a month—less than a dollar a week—how much will you have in six years? Ten years?

3. If you save ten dollars a month, how much will you have in seven years? Ten years?

4. If you save five dollars a month for ten years, will you have more or less than if you save ten dollars a month for five years?

5. Can you explain to the class how to read the table?

Monthly savings. 1 year 2 years 3 years 4 years 5 years
$1 $12.24 $24.98 $38.24 $52.03 $66.39
$2 24.48 49.96 76.48 104.06 132.77
$3 36.73 74.94 114.71 156.10 199.16
$4 48.97 99.93 152.95 208.13 265.55
$5 61.21 124.91 191.19 260.16 331.94
$10 122.42 249.81 382.38 520.32 663.87
Monthly savings. 6 years 7 years 8 years 9 years 10 years
$1 $81.32 $96.87 $113.04 $129.83 $147.35
$2 162.65 193.74 226.09 259.67 294.70
$3 243.97 290.61 339.13 389.50 442.05
$4 325.30 387.48 452.18 519.34 589.39
$5 406.62 484.35 565.22 649.17 736.74
$10 813.25 968.89 1,130.45 1,298.35 1,473.48
From "Fifteen Lessons in Thrift".

[Pg 139]


There were four children at the big second-story window that looked out over the broad avenue where the historical pageant was to pass; four children in very high spirits. Of course they were excited and happy; it was a wonderful place for seeing, and it was a wonderful parade that they were to watch—a celebration of the ending of the great World's War. The procession was to take the form of a series of groups of figures representing great persons from the history of the five important nations that had been allies in the struggle. Alfred and Betty and Francis and Dick had been talking for days about the great event. They were sure that they would enjoy it, for though Alfred, the oldest, was not thirteen yet, and Dick, the baby, was but seven, they all thought they knew something about history. And if they weren't able to recognize all the characters in the pageant, they need only ask Aunt Eleanor, who sat with them in the group at the window.

From far up the street came the sound of a band, and all the watchers stood on tiptoe or craned their necks to catch the first glimpse of the marching lines. It was a regimental band, with the colors carried proudly. How everyone cheered for the lines of khaki soldiers who followed next! Then noisy enthusiasm gave place to eager and interested questions about the first historical group. And nobody in all the watching crowd had more questions to ask than our windowful of children.

The center of the strangely costumed company was a blonde, bearded, kingly figure, wearing a crown of gold, a coat of mail, and a long, flowing cloak. One hand was on the jeweled hilt of his sword; the other clasped to his breast a parchment-bound book. Behind him were two[Pg 140] attendants. Aunt Eleanor, watching her charges with as much interest as they watched the street, saw that they looked puzzled, though Alfred was trying to pretend that he knew the name of the king.

"You ought to feel honored, Alfred," said Aunt Eleanor. "That splendid looking Englishman has the same name as you."

"Of course," said the boy, pretending that he had understood all the time. "It's Alfred the Great. He," turning loftily to the younger children, who couldn't be expected to know so much, "was the first really important king of England. He was a great fighter, and finally conquered all his enemies. But once he had to run away, after a battle, and hide in a peasant's hut in disguise. The woman there didn't know who he was, and she went away and left him to watch some cakes that were on the fire baking. He was so busy thinking about how to get his kingdom back that he let them burn, and when she came back she scolded him."

"Those queer round things that the other man is carrying on that wooden tray must be the cakes," exclaimed Betty.

"Yes," said their aunt. "And do you see the musician with the harp? That is to remind us that King Alfred was fond of music, and did all he could to help it flourish. He was more than just a fighter; he wanted his people to learn all they could, so he started schools, and he founded Oxford College, the oldest college in England. Don't you see the book in his hand to show that he was fond of reading? It was very unusual in those days, a thousand years ago, for even a king so much as to know how to read. But right after him in the procession is another warrior king who loved learning and music and all the arts of peace."

[Pg 141]

And sure enough, as King Alfred of England passed out of sight, there followed another kingly figure, very tall and clad all in iron. Helmet, shield, gloves, boots—all were iron, and the wearer was terrible to look at, so strong and merciless he seemed. Behind him came a group of horsemen carrying iron spears with glittering points and with gay banners fluttering from their shafts.

"Well," said Betty, "he may have loved peace, but he doesn't look it. Who is he, anyway?"

"He represents the first great king of France, Charlemagne, a name that means Charles the Great. He lived at about the same time with Alfred. He was a great conqueror and overcame all his neighbors. He even led a huge army across the Alps and conquered the northern part of Italy. There he had himself crowned with a famous Iron Crown that was worn by the king of that country. But when he was not fighting he was building beautiful palaces and chapels, and encouraging all the learned men of the country."

"There seem to be a lot of soldiers in this parade," said nine-year-old Francis, "Here comes another. Who's he?"

"He must be a Crusader," said Betty, "for he has a red cross on his white cloak, and armor underneath it."

"He's a king, too," said little Dick. "He's got a crown on. What's a Crusader, Auntie? And is he one?"

"The Crusaders lived about three hundred years later than Alfred and Charlemagne. In that time the Turks—yes, the same kind of Turks whom you have heard about as persecuting the poor little Armenian children—had come into possession of the Holy Land in Palestine. All the Christian countries wanted to drive them out, so that heathen might not be in possession of Jerusalem and the Holy Sepulcher. So from France and Italy and Germany[Pg 142] and England great armies went out to fight against the Saracens, as the Turks in Palestine were then called. And they wore red crosses on their cloaks to show that they were going on a holy war."

"Did they get the land back?" asked Francis.

"Why, no, silly," cried Alfred. "Don't you remember just last year General Allenby conquered Jerusalem, in the big war? The Turks had been there all that time. But wasn't that Crusader," nodding toward the rider disappearing in the distance, "somebody special?"

"Yes, indeed. You aren't the only boy here that has a king's name. This was a king with the same name as Dick—Richard of England, whom his people loved to call the Lion Hearted, because he was so brave. I could tell by the banner with the lion on it that floated above his head. There are lots of fine stories about King Richard. One tells how he was captured by an enemy on the way home from one of the Crusades and kept shut up in a tower for a year; and how he was found and rescued by a friend of his who was a sweet singer, and who went about singing a little song that the king loved, until at last he heard the king's voice sing in answer to him from the tower window. Then there's a story of how he came back to England in disguise, and kept his wicked brother John from stealing his throne. Some day you must read Sir Walter Scott's famous novel, 'Ivanhoe,' which tells all about the adventures of Richard in disguise."

A convenient gap in the procession had given Aunt Eleanor time to tell the children this much about King Richard; but now another group, a very soberly dressed company, too, claimed their attention. The central figure was not a king in armor this time, but a grave, determined looking man clad in black velvet, with a deep lace collar[Pg 143] and a wide black hat and feather. The children at once demanded his name.

"I must look at my program to find out who he is," said their aunt. "Oh, yes; William of Orange. Both he and his little country, Holland, have a wonderful story. Five hundred years ago the lands that are now Belgium and Holland belonged to Spain. As time went on the Spanish king, Philip, oppressed them more and more cruelly, and wouldn't let them have any freedom at all, either in politics or religion. But they were a liberty-loving people, and toward the end of the sixteenth century they rose in rebellion against Spain. This stern-looking Hollander was their greatest leader. He was called William the Silent, because of an event early in his career. One day the French king, who was in league with Spain, and who thought Prince William was in sympathy with their side, betrayed to him all the details of a secret plot. William was filled with horror and very angry, but he kept perfectly still, and didn't even show by the movement of an eyelash that he was anything but friendly and interested. He was called 'silent', you see, not because he didn't talk much, but because he could keep a secret."

"And was that when Holland and Belgium got to be independent countries? And why aren't they all one country, then?"

"Oh, the part that is Holland won its independence then, though poor William was murdered before the fight was finished. It was one of the earliest of European republics. But the part that is Belgium came to terms with Spain after William's death, and wasn't a separate country till long after. You see, the Holland part was made up of people of the Protestant religion, while the Belgian part, like Spain, was Catholic."

[Pg 144]

"I suppose that's why he's in this procession, because when he lived he really belonged to Belgium as well as to Holland," said Alfred thoughtfully.

"Oh!" cried Betty, clapping her hands, "I know who that next lot are! The lady in the ruff, with the little jeweled band in her hair, must be Queen Elizabeth, and those are her courtiers. Now every one of us has a namesake in the pageant, except Francis."

"If I'm not mistaken," said her aunt, "Francis has a namesake in this very group. Yes, surely—do you see the man with the pointed beard and the model of a ship in his hand? That is Sir Francis Drake, the great seaman. Over and over his little ship went in chase of the Spaniards, who were England's greatest enemies at this time. Elizabeth ruled at the same time when the Dutch, too, were fighting Spain. There was nothing too daring or dangerous for Drake to attempt. He was the first Englishman to sail around the world, a voyage which took more than two years. Once he sailed right into a Spanish harbor and burned all the Spanish ships there, which were being made ready for an attack on England. And he and his friends, bold adventurers like himself, laid the foundation of the power of England on the sea."

"I suppose the man with the red velvet cloak is Raleigh, and that's the cloak he spread down for Elizabeth to walk on."

"Yes. And do you see that kind, merry-looking man in black, with the simple white collar, carrying an actor's mask in his hand? That must be Shakespeare, the greatest writer of plays that ever lived. And I believe the man beside him, holding a great roll of manuscript and a quill pen, is Spenser, the poet who wrote a wonderful book called the 'Faerie Queen' in honor of Queen Elizabeth."

[Pg 145]

"We've had somebody from France and Belgium and England," said Betty. "I wonder if there won't be an American pretty soon?"

"There couldn't have been an American yet, stupid," Alfred informed her, "because there weren't any people in our part of America in Queen Elizabeth's time."

"Oh, so there weren't. There comes a soldier with an Indian chief and an Indian girl close behind him—he must be American, or the Indians wouldn't be there."

"Guess he's John Smith," spoke up Francis, "'cause I know he had his life saved by Pocahontas—that's the Indian girl. But I don't know what else he did."

"Oh, he was the leader of the first colony to be settled by the English in this country. What colony was it, Alfred? You can tell, surely."

"Of course, Jamestown, in Virginia. That was why the Indians got mad at him, because the white men were taking their lands away."

A burst of specially enthusiastic cheering arose from the street. The reason for it was the approach of a kindly-faced gentleman in dark gray coat and knee-breeches, with silver shoe-buckles and broad-brimmed Quaker hat. It was William Penn, of course, looking for all the world like the statue on the high City Hall tower. There was no need for Aunt Eleanor to give any information about him, for these were Philadelphia children, who knew and loved the founder of the "green country town" that had grown to be so large a city. Nor was there any need to explain about the next figure to arrive, a stately general on horseback, in white wig, cocked hat, and Revolutionary uniform of blue and buff. Behind him, in an old-fashioned carriage, rode Betsy Ross, holding the newly adopted Stars and Stripes, at which the men in the crowd doffed their hats.

[Pg 146]

But the next figure puzzled our little group of children. It was a very short man, stockily built, yet full of dignity. He, too, wore a cocked hat, and a plain uniform. He walked with head bent forward and hands clasped behind him, and his piercing black eyes looked at the ground. The children could not guess who he was, so Aunt Eleanor had to tell them.

"That is the great French conquerer Napoleon Bonaparte. He began life as an ordinary citizen, and won his way to the very top by his wonderful military genius. He won so many battles in command of the French armies, after the French Revolution at the end of the eighteenth century, that the people chose him to be consul, a position something like that of the president of a republic. Then he loved power so that he got control of the government and had himself made emperor, so that France wasn't a republic any more. After that he set out to conquer all of Europe, and he nearly succeeded. But one winter he went to Russia, and the cold and snow almost entirely destroyed his army; and he never could succeed in beating England. It was the great English general, the Duke of Wellington, who finally crushed Napoleon at the battle of Waterloo—you've heard of that? Well, after that the fallen Emperor was sent away to a little island, St. Helena, that belonged to England, and there he was kept a prisoner till the end of his life."

"He was something like the German Kaiser in the World's War, wasn't he?" said Alfred. "He wanted to conquer all Europe—and the United States, too."

"Yes, you'll learn that every once in so often history repeats itself. But we'll hope that the Kaiser's effort to conquer the world will be the last of such things, and that such a war may never be repeated."

[Pg 147]

"Oh, who is that rough looking man in the red flannel shirt?" cried Betty.

"That very red shirt tells me who he is," said her aunt. "Have you been wondering when we were going to have one of the heroes of Italy? Well, this is an Italian patriot named Garibaldi. About sixty years ago, when Italy was struggling to get free from Austria, and to be an independent nation, Garibaldi gathered together as many brave soldiers as he could, in the southern part of the country, and they marched to the help of their countrymen in a time of very great need. As a part of their uniform they wore red shirts. But one of the most interesting things about Garibaldi is that when his country wanted to give him a high position, he said he would rather go back to the farm he had bought for himself, and live his life out as a plain, ordinary man."

Little Dick had been keeping very still and listening, for all the people in the parade had been those that he never had heard of before. But suddenly he jumped to his feet in excitement. He, like every other child in the crowd, knew who was that tall, awkward, homely person in the long black frock coat and the high silk hat. There could be no mistaking that kind, sad face, with the patient, farseeing eyes. Behind the great president rode two soldierly figures—General Grant in his blue uniform, and General Lee in the gray, on his beloved white horse, Traveller. Nor could there be any mistaking of the energetic figure in hunting dress that followed him, whose face wore a smile that could not be spoiled by the heavy eyeglasses that were so familiar a part of a well-known countenance.

"Teddy," cheered the crowd, with the enthusiasm that always is stirred by true, generous manliness.

[Pg 148]

The afternoon was growing late. One group remained, with which the procession was to close. On horseback rode a tall, soldierly figure, dressed in khaki, with an officer's hat bearing royal insignia, and with his breast covered with medals. A pair of keen blue eyes smiled out of a clear-cut, earnest face. Behind him, in an automobile, rode a thin, worn old man in the scarlet robe and close scarlet cap of a cardinal.

"I need not tell you who they are," said Aunt Eleanor. "They stand to us for the little country that in 1914 saved the world by sacrificing herself. King Albert of Belgium led his own armies into battle; his queen, Elizabeth, nursed the wounded in the hospitals; and Cardinal Mercier stayed with his people to cheer and comfort them."

"I think they are the greatest heroes of all," said Betty softly.

"Any man is a hero, dear," said her aunt, "who spends his life for the help and safety of his people, not thinking what it costs himself."

Mabel Dodge Holmes.


1. Make a list of the heroes whom you can remember in the procession.

2. Was there any one of them whom you did not know about before?

3. Which one would you like to read more about?

4. Do you know any facts about any of these heroes that are not told in this story? If so, write a title for the story you can tell, and be ready to tell it to your classmates.

5. Do you know the name of any hero whom you would have added to those in the procession?

6. Some of the figures are not mentioned by name. Give the names of any of these you remember.

[Pg 149]


In the poem that follows, the poet tells us of a strange and fearful visitor that once came to him—the spirit of some ancient viking of the Northland all dressed in armor and carrying sword and shield.

In order to understand the poem, you must remember that the vikings were bold sea-rovers and fierce warriors who set out in their long swift boats in search after plunder and adventure. Some of them are even said to have come over to America long before Columbus ever dreamed of the new world. The poem was suggested to Mr. Longfellow by the finding of a skeleton clad in broken and rusted armor and buried in the sands of the New England shore, and by a very ancient tower that must have been built on the coast by the Northmen many years before 1492. These two facts are true, but of course the story that the poet made of them is merely a good story.

The poet's strange guest is one of these sea-robbers, who tells how as a youth he had won the love of a blue-eyed princess of the far North, only to find that her father forbade their marriage. In the first stanza the poet asks a question; the rest of the poem tells what the spirit of the viking said.

But you will want to read the story as the poet has told it.

"Speak! speak! thou fearful guest!
Who, with they hollow breast
Still in rude armor drest,
Comest to daunt me!
Wrapt not in Eastern balms,
But with thy fleshless palms
Stretched, as if asking alms,
Why dost thou haunt me?"
"Then, from those cavernous eyes
Pale flashes seemed to rise,
[Pg 150] As when the Northern skies
Gleam in December;
And, like the water's flow
Under December's snow,
Came a dull voice of woe
From the heart's chamber.
"I was a Viking old!
My deeds, though manifold,
No Skald in song has told,
No Saga taught thee!
Take heed, that in thy verse
Thou dost the tale rehearse,
Else dread a dead man's curse;
For this I sought thee.
"Far in the Northern Land,
By the wild Baltic's strand,
I, with my childish hand,
Tamed the gerfalcon;
And, with my skates fast-bound,
Skimmed the half-frozen Sound,
That the poor whimpering hound
Trembled to walk on.
"Oft to his frozen lair
Tracked I the grisly bear,
While from my path the hare
Fled like a shadow;
Oft through the forest dark
Followed the were-wolf's bark,
Until the soaring lark
[Pg 151] Sang from the meadow.
"But when I older grew,
Joining a corsair's crew,
O'er the dark sea I flew
With the marauders.
Wild was the life we led;
Many the souls that sped,
Many the hearts that bled,
By our stern orders.
"Once as I told in glee
Tales of the stormy sea,
Soft eyes did gaze on me,
Burning yet tender;
And as the white stars shine
On the dark Norway pine,
On that dark heart of mine
Fell their soft splendor.
"I wooed the blue-eyed maid,
Yielding, yet half afraid,
And in the forest's shade
Our vows were plighted.
Under its loosened vest
Fluttered her little breast,
Like birds within their nest
By the hawk frighted.
"Bright in her father's hall
Shields gleamed upon the wall,
Loud sang the minstrels all,
[Pg 152] Chanting his glory;
When of old Hildebrand
I asked his daughter's hand,
Mute did the minstrels stand
To hear my story.
"While the brown ale he quaffed,
Loud then the champion laughed
And as the wing-gusts waft
The sea-foam brightly,
So the loud laugh of scorn,
Out of those lips unshorn,
From the deep drinking-horn
Blew the foam lightly.
"She was a Prince's child,
I but a Viking wild,
And though she blushed and smiled,
I was discarded!
Should not the dove so white
Follow the sea-mew's flight,
Why did they leave that night
Her nest unguarded?
"Scarce had I put to sea,
Bearing the maid with me,
Fairest of all was she
Among the Norsemen!
When on the white sea-strand,
Waving his armed hand,
Saw we old Hildebrand,
With twenty horsemen.
[Pg 153]
I Wooed the Blue-Eyed Maid

I Wooed the Blue-Eyed Maid

[Pg 154]

"Then launched they to the blast,
Bent like a reed each mast,
Yet we were gaining fast,
When the wind failed us;
And with a sudden flaw
Came round the gusty Skaw,
So that our foe we saw
Laugh as he hailed us.
"And as to catch the gale
Round veered the flapping sail,
Death! was the helmsman's hail,
Death without quarter!
Mid-ships with iron keel
Struck we her ribs of steel;
Down her black hulk did reel
Through the black water!
"As with his wings aslant,
Sails the fierce cormorant,
Seeking some rocky haunt,
With his prey laden,
So toward the open main,
Beating the sea again,
Through the wild hurricane,
Bore I the maiden.
"Three weeks we westward bore,
And when the storm was o'er,
Cloud-like we saw the shore
[Pg 155] Stretching to leeward;
There for my lady's bower
Built I the lofty tower,
Which, to this very hour,
Stands looking seaward.
"There lived we many years;
Time dried the maiden's tears;
She had forgot her fears,
She was a mother;
Death closed her mild blue eyes,
Under that tower she lies;
Ne'er shall the sun arise
On such another!
"Still grew my bosom then,
Still as a stagnant fen!
Hateful to me were men,
The sunlight hateful!
In the vast forest here,
Clad in my warlike gear,
Fell I upon my spear,
O, death was grateful!
"Thus, seamed with many scars,
Bursting these prison bars,
Up to its native stars
My soul ascended!
There from the flowing bowl
Deep drinks the warrior's soul,
Skoal! to the Northland! skoal!"
Thus the tale ended.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.    
Courtesy of Houghton, Mifflin Company.

[Pg 156]


Here is another set of "movie" scenes. If you forget how we played the first set, look on page 38 and see just what to do.

1. The blind man came slowly down the road, tapping restlessly with his stick to guide him, and stopping every now and again to listen for some fellow traveler who might lead him to the town beyond the hill.

2. When they reached the open country, Aladdin had to gather sticks and to build a great fire for the magician, his uncle.

3. Aladdin's uncle stirred the fire until it blazed brightly. Then he threw in some magical powder and as a thick cloud of smoke arose, he made mystical signs over the fire, and muttered some strange words that Aladdin could not understand.

4. The Indian squatted down with legs crossed under him and waited for the morning sun to enable him to take up the trail again. Whenever the fire died away, he arose silently and replenished the fuel, but except for these breaks, one might have thought him a beautifully carved image.

5. None of the villagers knew Rip when he came back. He was old and stiff and bent with age. He carried on his shoulder his cherished musket, now useless and covered with rust. As the people crowded round him he scanned each face in turn, hoping to recognize some former familiar acquaintance.

6. Sir Roger drew his sword, and taking advantage of a corner in the garden wall, which might make a cowardly attack in the rear impossible, he waited for the band to approach. He knew that he was caught like a fox in this narrow garden, and he looked eagerly to count how many were against him.

[Pg 157]

7. Hardly had the Sheriff ridden off with his men, before Robin Hood came down the road, still dressed in the long gown that old Mother Hobbes had given him, and walking with the help of a cane, like an old woman, bent with years.

8. The savage raised his spear, and was about to cast it, but some slight sound caused him to hesitate an instant with the long shaft balancing lightly in his grasp.

9. An aged palmer came down the road. He was evidently returning from a long pilgrimage, for his cloak was old and tattered, his shoes were dusty and patched, and every few steps he stopped to rest on his long staff.

10. The tinker, very tired from his run, sat down on a large stone by the roadside. After looking cautiously about, he took the king's letter from his pocket and read it. Then folding it carefully again, and returning it to his pocket, he rose and started down the road singing cheerily.

11. He had tramped for three hours and had not discovered a single familiar sign. There was no sign in the cloudy sky to serve him as finger post. He climbed a tall tree that seemed to promise a view of the surrounding landscape, but everything was strange. He had read somewhere that the trees are mossy and green on the north side, but when he looked, even the trees seemed to be as uncertain as he. In despair he sat down on a fallen log and waited.

12. White Eagle looked far out over the plain. Beyond the now dry river basin and the green strip of brush and scrubby trees that bordered it, he could trace the slow, crawling wagon-train trailing out and winding like a lazy serpent through the dust. When he had counted for a second time to be sure, he drew back from the edge of the bluff, built two tiny fires, and watched the thin columns of smoke as they curled straight up in the air.

[Pg 158]


Here is a story of real human interest. We are all foreigners here in America except the American Indians. The ancestors of some of us came before those of others; and it is the duty of those of us whose ancestors have been here the longest to help the strange-looking, strange-speaking people who come to us from Europe to feel at home in our country.

The government has tried hard to protect the immigrants from dishonest people who have tried to cheat them out of their earnings. One of the good things that came out of the World's War was a knowledge on the part of almost all of our people of the safe investments that the government offers in bonds and thrift stamps.

"At last the way is clear!"

Stefan spoke with much emotion as he counted the roll of notes, clean and soiled, that lay before him on the table in his little room in the over-crowded boarding house.

As he fingered the bills, he saw before him each detail of the past two years—New York harbor with Liberty flinging up her welcome torch; the thrill of arrival in the city of his dreams; the days that followed, days of discouragement, home-sickness, and poverty, among strangers speaking strange tongues, with a medley of unfamiliar manners and customs. He saw with vivid clearness the first dollar he had earned, and he forgot the slow, painful processes of saving—the self-denial and the sacrifice—in the picture of what those sacrifices were to bring.

"She will come," he murmured. "On the same boat perhaps. When she gets the ticket, she will leave that war-threatened land and she will come to me." He smiled. Then as his face suddenly clouded he started forward on the rickety chair with a violence that threatened its frailness.[Pg 159] "If anything should happen! If I should lose the money!"

Greatly disturbed he gathered up the precious bills as though to shield them from possible loss. He rose to place them in the old hiding place in his trunk, but that no longer satisfied him. He wavered, then said:

"No, that won't do. I must see Ian about this. He knows. He is wise. I will see Ian this very minute."

Wrapping the money in a piece of old newspaper and carefully placing it in an inner pocket, he set out. He went straight to the dingy office in a side alley of the foreign section of the town, where through the dusty window could be seen the grizzled head of Ian Skeemersky, the real estate agent and private banker, whose sign, written by his own hand, hung over the entrance.

After greetings had been exchanged, he anxiously put the case before his shrewd friend, whose eyes sparkled with eagerness as he replied smoothly.

"Nothing so easy and so safe in the world, my dear fellow. Put your money in my bank. You will get good interest and can withdraw it whenever you want it."

Stefan hesitated for a second. So much was at stake! His slow mind must have time to weigh the proposal. As he noted the earnestness and assurance of Skeemersky's face, belief in this shrewd friend decided. He drew out the pack and laid it on the desk before Skeemersky, whose long fingers closed over it at once.

"You have done well, Stefan Broda, your money is as safe with me as if it was in Mt. Vavel," he declared.

Stefan felt that he had done well. The phrase "as safe as Mt. Vavel" lingered in his mind. It helped him be patient in the long weeks in the factory where he worked during the winter; it consoled him during the dull days[Pg 160] while he waited for the open springtime when he planned to send for Agatha. When he heard of others losing their small savings in various ways he congratulated himself on the security of his own, "as safe as Vavel," he would repeat.

One sunny morning in March, just as he decided to stop on his way from work to withdraw the three hundred dollars for Agatha's expenses, there came to him a neighbor, in great excitement. Peter's face was red, his eyes startling and his voice hoarse.

"That—that robber, that scoundrel!" he stuttered. "That Skeemersky. He has gone, gone, do you hear? He has taken it all, all the money in his cursed bank."

Stefan could not believe his ears. Skeemersky gone, and the money, too! "As safe as Vavel!" he had said. He stared for a moment and then broke out, weeping for the first time since his mother's death, cursing the smooth trickster with hearty Polish curses.

"May the thunder-bolt strike him!" he cried. "I will lay hands on him. I will choke that money out of his black soul. Come, we will go!"

They rushed out, boiling with rage, only to find a crowd of other dupes before the shabby little office in the side-alley. The tightly closed door and the blank windows told the story more clearly than any words. Skeemersky had gone—the bank was no more!

Despair took strong hold of Stefan. For two days he roamed the streets, not eating nor drinking, sleepless. He saw no further, no hope—all was blackness and desolation. When he came back to the boarding house on the third day he found a letter from Agatha. He read it with tears and intolerable anguish and he passionately kissed the final sentence: "Every bit of me is yours and I shall never change." This tender faith was balm to his anguish.

[Pg 161]

He put the letter in a pocket nearest his heart, while a new look came to his tired face. Almost unconsciously he began to build a new future on the ruins of the old.

He swiftly mapped out his course. The season for farmwork was at hand. He would go back to the open skies and broad fields of God's world. He packed a few belongings in the rusty brown-paper suitcase and boarded the trolley for the long ride. He knew what he should do if he could rent a suitable piece of land.

He had spent the previous summer on a farm in the onion-growing section of the Connecticut Valley; he knew what large profits might be gotten with hard labor from a comparatively small plot of ground. He figured that three or four acres would give him the needed amount in the fall, if he had health and good weather.

He found the man whom he sought, secured the land, and went to work. All that season he slaved early and late, weeding on his knees in the damp earth the interminable rows of tiny, delicate plants where the weeds sprang like magic. He heeded neither scorching sun, nor soaking rain. He cared nothing for the monotony of the toil. Always he saw before him the steamer that should bring Agatha, from the hazards of war, to him and security.

By September he had once again the dream within his grasp. He was back in the old room in the crowded boarding house, and in his bluish tin trunk at the foot of the bed were hidden five hundred and fifteen dollars in crisp, clean notes. His earliest belief in his trunk had come back a hundredfold. He would not trust any bank, private or national, with the fruit of his heart-breaking toil. Banking systems and government investments were all beyond his grasp. Skeemersky had taught him to distrust others—the little thin trunk would not run away.

[Pg 162]

This conviction of safety obsessed him. He preached it to others, to his fellow-boarders, especially to the friendly young man in the room across the hall. "See," he would say, waving a hand toward the great untrustworthy world of finance beyond his little window. "They run away—those bankers. I have a better place."

He did not tell the friendly young man where or how much he had hidden. He merely smiled mysteriously. His faith in his trunk was absolute. Day after day, when returning from work in the factory, he took out his roll of notes and rejoiced that he had found the solution; he counted the days when he should send for his love. It was hard for him to wait for the lagging spring, but a winter journey in war-time from Russian Poland to New England was not to be thought of for his Agatha.

Blind faith often leads to the pit. Stefan, upon a night in late winter, found his theory shattered. The friendly young man had gone, and the crisp, clean notes had disappeared with him!

In this second crash of his hopes he was numbed. He neither wept nor cursed. He silently shrank into himself. He grew abstracted. He stared at the world with unseeing eyes. In the turmoil of his distracted mind there was but one growing determination not to be beaten by fate.

It was not, however, until the news of the German campaign in Warsaw, that his resolve took definite shape. Borrowing two hundred dollars, he sent the money to Agatha in Poland, and regardless of winter or war, urged her to come at once.

When, after long weeks of suspense, he stood by the gate at Ellis Island waiting for the sight of her dear, familiar face among the surging crowd of tagged and numbered immigrants beyond the iron barrier, a great wave of joyous[Pg 163] hope flooded his heart. All his disasters were forgotten when he caught the glint of her pale hair under the embroidered kerchief. Banks and trunks went to oblivion as he took her small roughened hands in his own. Destiny had no terrors for him.

On the train he poured out his heart to her. He told her of his great efforts and his greater misfortunes. He made her see his challenge to destiny. He pictured his emotions in the last weeks. And he wound up with an eager entreaty for immediate marriage.

"Let us no longer delay," he urged. "Let us find the good priest." But Agatha was not to be hurried. Her blue eyes showed her own sorrow for the words her lips spoke. "Our love, my Stefan, will not change. But your money is gone. We cannot live without money. I shall work, and you shall work. Then we will marry."

Stefan protested vigorously, but he knew that she was right. He saw that he must yield. He proposed a compromise. "Let us work then for this spring and summer—you in the silk mill and I in my onion patch," he said, "and marry in the fall. I can wait no longer than that."

Agatha could find no fault with this. It won her approval of both heart and her reason. Slipping her hand in his, she nestled closer and they began their hopeful planning, while the train sped on, bearing them to the peaceful valley of their future labors.

All the plans—sensible and practical—they made that wonderful first day, were marvelously realized, not by mere happy chance, but through a great steadfastness of purpose and unfaltering toil. By thrift and frugality, by self-denial and sacrifice, they accomplished the miracle. And they were happy in the doing of it, because they worked together. Neither Stefan nor Agatha had ever[Pg 164] labored so willingly. The radiance of a united future lighted the way—always just ahead they saw the hearth-fire gleaming.

The spring and summer passed swiftly. Stefan and Agatha learned of America's entry into the world war with anxious hearts. They dreaded the quenching of that hearth-fire. But their fears were groundless. Instead of depreciation and loss the war brought added prosperity. The wages in the silk mill were raised. Stefan's onion sets sold at double prices. At the end of the season they found that they had exceeded their hopes, in spite of paying off the debt and the increased cost of living.

At last, as Stefan had said, the way was clear. The crown of their hopes, the wedding day, was set and their friends invited. A stone house with a little ground had been secured. The furniture was installed. Everything was ready for the marriage feast on the next day.

As they left the cozy little house in the long shadows of the September sunset, Stefan turned at the gate to look back. His dream was realized. Destiny had not taken up his challenge so far, and he determined to make the future sure. Unconsciously his hand stole to the inner pocket where a modest roll of notes—the remains of their combined savings lay warm and safe. In all their anxious discussions, he and Agatha had not been able to find a place safe enough to satisfy their fears. Bankers and trunks had betrayed their trust. Stefan sighed. He had hoped to have this matter off his mind before the happy morrow. He wished Agatha would offer some solution and he turned to her with the old question on his lips. But he did not ask it. Another voice took up the story.

It was old Shelton, the farmer for whom Stefan had worked the first summer in the valley. His small eyes[Pg 165] were twinkling and his long chin beard wagged importantly. "Hello, Steve, how'r ye? Settin' up in fine style, I see. Must be gittin' rich these days."

Stefan thought at first that the shrewd old fellow's chuckle of delight was a tribute to his and Agatha's achievement. But he was soon enlightened as to its real source. Old Shelton bestowed hearty praise on the little house and neat garden, he congratulated him in advance for the morrow, but his small eyes fairly snapped as he added, tapping his own pocket.

"Ye'v spent a pile of money on all this there, and I s'pose you ain't got much left—I got somepin here that 'ud interest ye."

It was the answer to Stefan's unuttered question. He started as old Shelton pulled out from his pocket two yellowish, stiff folders with much black lettering upon them, which, when opened by Shelton's toil-worn fingers, disclosed a number of large square stamps pasted on the printed squares. Agatha, woman-like, was quick to inquire. Old Shelton explained with zest.

He showed them first the Thrift card with its green twenty-five cent stamps. "I got them at odd times, at the post office," he told them with his exultant chuckle. "These here," showing the Savings Certificates with blue five-dollar stamps, "I bought right out when I saw what a sure thing it was. Safe as Uncle Sam's Capitol at Washington. Can't never bust up, these can't. No, siree! Long as this here country holds out, these here stamps are worth the coin! And look at the money ye make on 'em."

And he explained the process by which today's purchaser of a blue stamp would be the possessor of a five-dollar note when the stamps matured at the end of five years. "Only four-nineteen, ye see," he pointed with a horny finger.[Pg 166] "Only four-nineteen today, but five good round dollars in five years. Ye can't beat that, I tell ye. Not to be safe and sound, ye understand."

Stefan and Agatha looked at each other. They knew old Shelton to be the shrewdest, most cautious man in the community. In a moment they knew what they should do with the modest roll of bills. The safe place had been found. The United States Treasury was the only spot.

"As safe as Vavel!" murmured Stefan as the old farmer after repeated congratulations and chuckled approval of the young people's eager acceptance of his gospel of thrift, disappeared down the long road.

"As safe as Vavel," he repeated, and a great surge of joyful relief flooded his very soul.

He put his arm about Agatha and they turned their faces toward the sunset glow. In the dim glory of the skies they saw the steadfast gleam of their own dear hearth-fire.

"The good God has shown us the way," they said.

Casimir A. Sienkiewicz.    
Courtesy Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.

This story can be easily divided into a definite series of shorter stories. The titles of these shorter stories will serve as an outline. Look over the selection quickly, and write the outline.


Even government bonds and thrift stamps have to be guarded so that they will not be lost, burned, or stolen.

Where is the safest place to keep such valuable things as liberty bonds and thrift stamps? How much does it cost to rent a safe place for your savings? Where can you rent one in your town?

[Pg 167]


Are you careless? That makes you stop and think a bit, doesn't it? If you are honest with yourself, the answer probably will be "Yes," for almost everybody in this country is careless. That is the principal reason why we have so many fires.

Here are some figures that should open our eyes. In 1913, the year before the outbreak of the war, the average fire-loss for each man, woman and child in France was 49 cents; in England it was 33 cents; in Germany, 28 cents; in Austria, 25 cents; in Italy, 25 cents; in Switzerland, 15 cents; and in Holland, only 11 cents. In the United States for the same year the direct loss was $2.10—and the indirect loss was far higher. Our record was, therefore, more than four times as bad as that of France, and nearly twenty times as bad as that of Holland.

Vienna and Chicago are cities of about the same size. Vienna had fire losses for the year 1913 of $303,200; Chicago's were $5,513,237, or more than eighteen times as great. New York City's fire losses were about four and one-half times as large as those of London. A similar comparison might be made with many other cities. Can we be proud of such figures?

Of course there are more wooden buildings in America than in Europe. This is a condition which will take many years to change. But the most serious cause of fires could be removed at once, if all the people would assist; this cause is found in one word—carelessness.

It must be admitted that the United States, with all its advantages, is a nation of careless people. Carelessness is not a thing to be proud of; it is a great national sin. It shows itself in many habits of recklessness, wastefulness, and untidiness. It burns our towns; it leads people to[Pg 168] risk their lives at railroad crossings and other places of danger; it takes chances with health; it is shown in all dirty streets, littered back yards, and untidy homes. It has been well described by Roy K. Moulton, a writer in the "News" of Grand Rapids, Michigan, as follows:


I am more powerful than the combined armies of the world.

I am more deadly than bullets, and I have wrecked more homes than the mightiest of siege guns.

I steal in the United States alone over $300,000,000 each year.

I spare no one, and find my victims among the rich and poor alike, the young and old, the strong and the weak; widows and orphans know me.

I massacre thousands upon thousands of wage-earners in a year.

I lurk in unseen places, and do most of my work silently. You are warned against me, but you heed not.

I am relentless. I am everywhere; in the home, on the street, in the factory, at railroad crossings, and on the sea.

I bring sickness, degradation and death, and yet few seek to avoid me.

I destroy, crush and maim; I give nothing, but take all.

I am your worst enemy.


If a foreign army should land upon our shores, it could not wreak more destruction than this. If such an army should come and any American were found to be giving it aid, he would be called a traitor to his country. Every patriot would rise against such a foe.

The spirit of carelessness in the United States is really a greater enemy than any foreign invader, and it is found[Pg 169] in millions of little unconscious acts of carelessness. Whenever you, yourself, commit such an act, therefore, you really range yourself as an enemy of your country, but if you begin earnestly to watch your actions and to form new habits of carefulness, you will be helping our great nation to become safer, healthier, happier, and more useful to humanity. This is the spirit of true patriotism.

If, then, you are determined to try with all your might to form these new habits of carefulness, the first great step toward preventing fire will have been taken.

National Board of Fire Underwriters.


When you have finished reading, write the answers to these questions. If you can not answer immediately, find the answer somewhere in the story, but do not read it all again; read only enough to get the correct answer.

1. What two reasons can you find to account for the greater loss by fire in the United States than in Europe?

2. Which of these two reasons can be the more quickly removed? Which one can you help to remove?

3. What other bad results besides fires come from our great national sin?

4. Do you think it is fair to call a careless person unpatriotic? Why?


Can you memorize by one careful reading these five lines which tell of the great result of a small piece of carelessness?

For want of a nail the shoe was lost;
For want of a shoe the horse was lost;
For want of the horse the rider was lost;
For want of the rider the battle was lost;
For want of the battle a kingdom was lost.

[Pg 170]


This story, "Caliph for One Day," is a tale from "The Arabian Nights". If you have never read this story, you will find it very interesting. Of course you have heard of Ali Baba, and of Aladdin with his wonderful lamp, and of the Old Man of the Sea.

Your teacher would like to know which of you have read any of the "Arabian Nights" tales and which of these tales you have read.

You ought to try to read such stories as this rapidly. To some extent the rapidity with which you read is a habit. Every one forms his own habits; and if you will try hard you can form habits that will be useful to you as long as you live. One of these habits is that of reading rapidly.

The sun was just setting, and its last rays gilded the roofs and towers of the City of Bagdad, on the river Tigris; and far away, also, on the ripples of the river fell the evening light, and the numerous boats and ships which moved about on the surface of the water seemed to plough through melted gold. On the railing of a high bridge which led over the Tigris leaned a young man, who now turned his face towards the sparkling water, now towards the people passing over the bridge. His attention, however, appeared to be given less to the inhabitants of the city than to those who might be taken for strangers through their appearance and behavior. The eyes of many a passer-by were turned also upon him, and it seemed many times as if one or another of them wished to approach him. But a stern, repelling glance from the young man had the effect, each time of making them go on their way after a slight hesitation, shaking the head.

Suddenly two men drew near. The first of them seemed, judging from his clothing, to be a rich business man from[Pg 171] the city of Mussal; the second, who followed him at some distance, was apparently his servant. When the man waiting upon the bridge saw them come up to him, he straightened up and went to meet them. Greeting respectfully the man who was apparently a merchant, he said: "Sir, if, as I assume, you are a stranger in this city, I beg you to come home with me and sleep in my house."

As the stranger seemed rather taken by surprise, he continued: "I am called 'Queer Abu Hassan', and live in my own house. I have made it my duty for some time to take a stranger home with me every evening as my guest, and entertain him there as well as I can until the following morning. You would do me a great honor if you would accept my invitation."

The stranger was no one else than the Caliph Harun Alrashid, who was thus caught on one of his favorite wanderings through the city accompanied by one of his slaves.

After a few kindly words he agreed, called his servant to him, and both joined Abu Hassan, who soon brought them to his house not far away. Here he bade them lie down and make themselves at home. Soon a servant appeared and brought their supper. It consisted of several well prepared dishes, and seemed to please both strangers very well. All kinds of fruit were placed upon the table for dessert, and after the meal was finished they had a lively conversation, in which Abu Hassan's mother took part when she came in to greet the guests. Although neither she nor her son had any idea of the lofty position of their guest, they bustled around him so pleasantly and kindly that Harun stretched himself out comfortably on a divan and took his share in the talk with real enjoyment. At last the Caliph requested Abu Hassan to tell him his history. And so the host of the evening began as follows:

[Pg 172]

"I am the son of a very rich merchant, who died only too young, and I had a good education as a boy. But if my father made any mistake at that time, it was that he gave me very little money, and so prevented my learning how to spend more wisely, which must really be learned in order to be done properly. So, after his death, I devoted myself to this occupation with a number of other young fellows, and enjoyed myself at such a rate that I soon had got rid of a great part of my property. Fortunately I saw soon enough the abyss into which my way of living must lead me. For this reason I drew back, but first decided to test my friends and see whether they were true or not. I told them that I had gone through all my money, and asked them to help me. Not one of them gave me a reassuring answer. Furthermore, they avoided me, and acted on the street as if they had never known me. This contemptible behavior hurt me so deeply, that I came near to hating the whole human race. But after I had lived a long time in melancholy loneliness, I pulled myself together again, and decided to go out among people once more. I promised myself, however, never again to invite a friend, but only strangers, and never to keep one longer than one night in my house, and if I ever saw them again to act as if I had never seen them. So this evening, just before I saw you, I turned away from several persons who had been my guests before, and who were about to speak to me."

The Caliph laughed, and said: "No one can blame you under such circumstances, and because of your extraordinary experience."

After Abu Hassan's mother had retired the young man brought out a bottle of his best wine, and presented a glass of it to the Caliph, after first politely tasting it. The[Pg 173] Caliph drank to him, and asked Abu if he could not do him a favor in return for his kind hospitality. But Abu answered with a smile: "You understand, sir, that I do not count upon recognition, and to-morrow morning will not know you any more."

"That's so," laughed Harun; "but I had forgotten it. You can, however, pay no further attention to me if you wish, and yet if it is distasteful to you to ask a favor for yourself, request a helping hand to be given to somebody else."

"Sir," cried Abu Hassan, "my friends were not of the quality that I would want to do anything for them, nor will I harm them, either. So I would not know what wish I could make. But wait!" he broke out suddenly. "There is one wish which I have often thought of and will tell you of, although you cannot fulfil it, and perhaps will find it extremely ridiculous. But you will at least understand why people call me 'Queer Abu Hassan'."

"Let's hear it," said the Caliph.

Abu Hassan sighed, and announced: "Just for one day I would like to be Caliph."

"And what influences you to this wish?" asked Harun. "Would you carry out some important law in the State? Or look out for yourself immediately?"

"Neither one nor the other," answered Queer Abu Hassan. "I would just like to have some scamps among my neighbors thoroughly beaten."

"And you would like to be caliph merely for this purpose?" laughed Harun Alrashid.

"Certainly, sir," replied Abu Hassan, "because I cannot get a suitable punishment measured out to them in any other way. Since they are rascals, they would easily get away from the judge to whom I might denounce them."

[Pg 174]

"Do you think so?" asked the Caliph.

"They would the more surely avoid punishment," said Abu Hassan, "because their ringleader is a holy Imam of respected appearance, whom the judge would never believe capable of any wrong action, and yet they slander all the respectable people in this quarter of the city, and try by using every means to gain an influence over the consciences of the Faithful, while they themselves pay but scant attention to the laws of the Koran."

"Well," said the Caliph, as he tried to calm Abu Hassan, who had worked himself up to a rage, "perhaps your wish to see these scoundrels properly punished will come true in some way, even if you are not the Commander of the Faithful. Let us drink to the realization of your wish."

The Caliph seized the bottle and filled the glasses full, at the same time dropping a pinch of white powder into Abu Hassan's glass without his noticing it.

Hardly had they drank it off before Abu Hassan nodded his head and fell into a deep sleep. The Caliph immediately called his slave, and ordered him to take the sleeping man on his shoulders and bear him to the palace. Then he left Abu Hassan's house, pulling the door to, but not shutting it.

Once arrived at his palace, Harun Alrashid ordered Abu Hassan to be clothed in a splendid night robe and laid in the Caliph's own costly bed. Then the officers, servants, slaves, and slave women received the strictest orders to carry out Abu Hassan's commissions faithfully next morning, and, above all, to treat him as if he were the Commander of the Faithful.

You can imagine Abu Hassan's astonishment when he woke up next morning in the splendid bed and looked around at the room so beautifully decorated with gold and expensive wall hangings. At first he thought he was dreaming. He kept opening and closing his eyes, trying to find out for sure if he were asleep or awake. Still greater was his amazement when he caught sight of a garment of woven gold near his bed, and a caliph's cap on a silken cushion. But yet he could not believe that these were all real things, and he had to convince himself by feeling them that he was not in a world of dreams.

[Pg 175] Please Bite My Finger

"Please Bite My Finger"

"Where am I, then?" he cried. "What has happened[Pg 176] to me? Everything looks as if I were in the Caliph's palace. Or have I become Caliph myself over night?"

While scolding himself for his foolish thoughts, he was trying all the time to go to sleep again. But suddenly the lofty double doors of his chamber opened, and a troop of wonderfully beautiful women and black slaves stepped in. One band of women began to sing and play charming music on different instruments. The others threw themselves down before him, and one of the black slaves stepped to the bedside and said: "Commander of the Faithful, it is time for early prayers. May it please you to get up?"

"Whether I'm Caliph or not, I will get up at least just to see how this adventure turns out!"

Hardly did he show his intention of raising himself when the slaves jumped in a hurry to help him, and to dress him in the golden morning gown. At the same time all those present shouted: "Commander of the Faithful, God give you a blessed day!"

Now, this was too much for poor Abu Hassan. He called one of the women to him, and said: "Please bite my finger, so I can see if I am dreaming or not."

The slave that he called knew that Harun Alrashid was watching everything from the next room, and wished to amuse the real Commander of the Faithful. So she bit[Pg 177] Abu Hassan's finger sharply. The quickness with which Abu Hassan pulled back his finger made the hidden Caliph almost split his sides with laughing, and he congratulated himself that he had found such an enjoyable diversion by carrying his plan through. He said to himself: "Abu Hassan could hardly be more curious than I am to know how the story will end."

But Abu Hassan was thinking: "I cannot understand this surprising change, but it seems to me that the queer Hassan of yesterday has become the real Caliph of today." So he let them put his clothes on him without resistance, and with a certain dignified manner which the Caliph noticed with great pleasure. Then they washed his head, face and hands with deliciously scented water. Finally the Grand Vizier announced, with many a bow of respect, that the great people of the court and of the realm were assembled and expecting the appearance of the Commander of the Faithful. So Abu Hassan drew himself up to his full height, and, preceded by armed soldiers and a number of chamberlains resplendent in gold, walked to the great throne room, where he was led to the throne by the chamberlains.

The doors of the hall opened, and the Commanders-in-Chief of the Army, the Governors of the Provinces and the nobles of the country marched in in a wonderful parade and greeted Abu Hassan as Caliph. They stepped forward to the throne, dropped on their knees, and touched the carpet before him with their foreheads. Abu Hassan took all of this as quietly as if he had been Caliph since youth. He listened to the Grand Vizier's address, took part in the consultations over matters of state, and decided difficult points with such a sound understanding of human nature that the real Caliph, who stood disguised among the[Pg 178] officers, was greatly pleased. Suddenly Abu Hassan made a sign to the Grand Vizier to interrupt his address.

"Where is the Chief of Police of our capital city?" he cried. "Let him be brought here immediately."

When the man called for had appeared and announced himself, "at the command of his mighty master," Abu said: "In the mosque of the new quarter you will find an Imam and four other old men. I wish you to arrest them and give each one hundred stripes with the bastinado. Then let them be mounted backwards on camels and led through the city accompanied by a herald, who shall call out these words: 'In this way the Commander of the Faithful punishes those who meddle in matters that do not concern them, and who know nothing better to do than bring trouble and pain to their neighbors.' After this sentence is completed, however, you are then to tell them that they must leave that quarter of the city, and not set foot in it again under penalty of death."

While the magistrate hurried away to carry out Abu Hassan's command, the Grand Vizier went on with his address. An hour later the Chief of Police came back with the news that the Caliph's orders had been conscientiously fulfilled, at which Abu Hassan felt the greatest satisfaction, while Harun Alrashid thoroughly enjoyed seeing his substitute arrive so quickly at the realization of his long cherished wish.

After the business matters were finished, there took place another stately reception of numerous foreign ambassadors, and finally the new Caliph betook himself with his whole court to dinner. It consisted of a selection of the most delicate food and wine, and lasted late into the evening, with music and all kinds of dancing.

Abu Hassan had behaved in such a dignified manner for[Pg 179] all this time that now he showed every favor to the people in his neighborhood, and even condescended to talk with the slaves. It was fairly late when one of the most beautiful of the slave girls came up to Abu Hassan and offered him a glass of the sweetest wine prepared especially for the Caliph. Abu Hassan was charmed, and had not any suspicion that the delicious mixture contained a potent sleeping powder. He drank it off, and in a few minutes fell into a sound sleep.

As quickly as he was brought away the day before, just so speedily now was he transported into his own dwelling. Next morning the Caliph for One Day woke up again as Abu Hassan, and found himself in his old circumstances. In spite of all his calls and shouts, neither the slaves nor the court officers of yesterday hurried to him to ask his wishes. He was sadly perplexed at first at this new change, but he soon got over it, and consoled himself with thinking that at least he had had a beautiful dream. When his mother told him that he had in fact disappeared for a whole day, and when he also learned that the Imam and his fellows had been punished exactly as he had ordered when Caliph, he did not know what to think of the whole adventure at all.

Finally, he leaned to his mother's view, who explained it by saying that some spirit had taken him away and had executed the Imam's punishment. He was thankful indeed to be rid of his rascally neighbors, but he could never give himself an explanation of what had moved the spirit to help him. In the end, however, he put the whole story out of his mind, and became again what he had been before—Queer Abu Hassan, or the Caliph for One Day.

Arabian Nights.

[Pg 180]


Ang was a mighty hunter and also a priest of Odin, but Oma was a famous housewife or cave-wife, and not only Suta, the wife of Wang, came to take lessons of her, but many other women who had heard of her wonderful skill in cooking old food in new ways and discovering new foods which the magic of the fire made palatable. She had learned not merely how to cook the meat which Ang brought, but to dry it so that it would keep for a long time. She discovered how to make a coarse flour from nuts and acorns and to bake cakes on flat stones. At the fire feast the cooking of Oma made as great an impression as the wisdom and strength of Ang.

But her greatest discovery was the art of making pottery dishes out of clay and baking them before the fire. For a long time women had made baskets of reeds and willow twigs in which they could carry dry foods, but the problem was to get something in which they could carry liquids. Sometimes they used skin bottles, but they soon leaked and the water rotted them out. Then some clever woman smeared the inside of a closely woven basket with resinous pitch. Another lined her baskets with clay and baked them in the sun, but water would soon soften the clay. Then came Oma and the fire and the art of baking clay. This is the way it happened. Oma had been lining some baskets with clay, and little Om tried to imitate her. Since it was cold he sat as near to the fire as he could, and after he had finished one, he would put it on a stone near the fire until he had a row of them. Then the wind changed suddenly and blew the fire towards him, and he had to move quickly, leaving his clay baskets on the rock. He called to his mother to get them, but she had no notion of[Pg 181] getting burned for so small a cause and she was too busy to bother, as mothers often are.

That night after Om had gone to sleep she sat by the fire with Ang, and her eyes spied the little row of clay baskets. She picked one up to show the father what a clever boy his son was getting to be. As she touched the clay, she found it dry and hard as no clay she had ever touched before. Some of the baskets were dry and crumbly, but two or three in the center were hard as stone. A thought came to her. She ran to the brook and filled the hardest with water and brought them back to the fire. They did not soften or leak. Then she put them on a flat stone and pushed them almost into the fire. Soon the water in them began to bubble and steam.

"Look!" cried Oma. "At the touch of the Red One a little Cloud Spirit goes up to the great Cloud Spirits that fly in the blue above us."

Then Ang knew that Odin had given a new gift. "This time the Red One has spoken to you; what has he said?"

Oma carefully drew the little clay pots from the fire, and after they had cooled she examined them. Two of them were cracked, but one was firm and solid as if it had been cut from stone. She held it up before Ang in triumph. "This is what we have been waiting for since the beginning of time. The Red One has worked magic on the clay, and its old enemy, the water, cannot eat through it."

The next day Oma made baskets lined with clay, and then, putting them on flat stones, pushed them into the heat of the fire. Some of them crumbled, but others baked hard and firm. As the heat burned off the inclosing basket, the pattern was left molded on the clay.

After many experiments Oma learned just what clay to use and how to bake it. And she made pots of all sizes and[Pg 182] arranged them on ledges of her cave and filled them with nuts and seeds. Then she learned how to use the clay pots for cooking. In the old days she had placed scraps of meat and bone and roots in a pitch-lined basket and then added water and hot stones from the fire. Of course the pitch softened and gave an unpleasant taste to the stew, and often the hot water softened it so much that the basket became like a sieve. But now Oma could mix her stews and brews and boil them until they were soft and delicious, and the clay dish was just as good as before.

And Suta and other women came to look; and they wondered and tasted, and smacked their lips, and asked how it was done, then went home to do likewise. And the fame of Ang and Oma grew in the north land, and men said, "They are loved by the Great One".

But if Oma made the first pottery and the most useful, Suta, wife of Wang, made the most beautiful. After she had learned to bake the clay so that neither fire nor water would harm it, she amused herself by making dishes of queer shapes. Then she discovered it was not necessary to make the basket molds, and that if she made marks on the clay they would be baked in. She began by making a little row of nail prints about the rim—((((((((((. Then she made rough pictures of animals and men with a sharpened stick. And the fame of Suta went out also through the north land, and they came from far away to see the wonderful things which she had done. Others tried, but no one could make such beautiful dishes as Suta.

Before the great fire feast an idea came to Suta like a dream in the night, she knew not from where. She would make a great bowl for Odin and she would mold on it pictures of his gifts, so that all who saw would remember from whom the good things came. With great care she shaped a bowl as high as a five-year-old child and so large that a grown man could not circle it with his arms. On it she pictured the man who shot the first deer with a stone-tipped arrow, the man who made the first snare for the wild birds, the man who first crossed the deep water in a hollowed log, Ang striking fire from the flints, Oma baking the clay dishes. Then she hesitated. These and many things more the Great One had given; what would He give next? What did she want most?

[Pg 183] The First Potter

The First Potter

Now Suta was not like Ang or Wang or even like Oma.[Pg 184] Wang had thought sometimes that she was not so good a cook as Oma, and that she spent too much time listening to the song of the birds and watching the play of the light on the water and the woods and the far-off hills. She did these things sometimes when he thought she ought to get wood for the fire or cook something for him, and he grumbled a little. But now that she made dishes of clay which no one else could make and all men said, "What a fortunate man Wang is to have a woman that can make such things!" Wang began to be very proud of her. He even went so far as to get wood for the fire, which he did not think man's work.

And what did Suta the dreamer want? She did not want more food or more clothes or a bigger cave; she wanted the power to mold in clay the things she saw and loved. So she put on the great bowl for the All-Father a picture of a woman, with her back turned on the lookers and a sharpened stick in her hand, just ready to work the soft clay, but waiting for the power to draw on clay the picture in her mind. It was the first expression of the unsatisfied yearning of the artist for beauty and the power to express it. For Suta was the mother of those who love the beautiful and long to give it permanent form.

[Pg 185]

When the bowl for the Giver was finished, it was placed on a stone foundation in front of the stone altar, which Ang and Wang had made. At the feast it was filled with sparkling water from a spring near by, and as the men danced about the fire they dipped their hands in it as they passed by and sprinkled the water on the fire and on themselves and sang:

Singing water of the brook,
Shining laughter of the wood,
Talking picture of the clay,
Earth and fire and water, all
Are voices of the Great.

All who saw the great bowl which Suta had made were filled with wonder, and they wanted her to make something for them. Then the great idea came to Wang. Now Wang was not so strong as Ang or so good a hunter, but he wanted just as much to eat and just as warm furs to wear. He liked better to sit talking with some crony in the shade in summer or by the fire in winter. Talking and sitting were the two things of which he never tired. Now when the world was young, such men went hungry and cold, and Wang had done so often, and, more's the pity, Suta and little Sut; but then came the idea. Every one wanted Suta's clay dishes; he wanted deer's meat and bear's, and furs, and the choicest seeds and nuts. He would barter the things which Suta made for the things he wanted. Suta would do the work; others would bring food and furs and fruits; he would sit in front of the cave and give as little of the first for as much of the second as possible. And the idea worked. Suta loved to mold the plastic clay and decorate it. Many wanted the things which she had made, and Wang's wily tongue multiplied the number of those who were willing to pay for what they wanted.

[Pg 186]

So Wang became the father of a long line of traders, and the Wang family had more food than they could eat and more furs than they could wear. Wang grew thick in the belly and thin in the calf, but it suited him, and Suta was too busy with her clay to care. And Wang the trader became almost as great a man as Ang the priest.

And Oma, wife of Ang, grew envious of Suta, wife of Wang. And she grumbled to Ang: "Did not you find the Red One and bring Wang and Suta so that they should not perish from the cold? Have you not fed them with meat of your own hunting? Did not I learn from the Red One how to harden and mold the clay? Did I not show Suta? Do I not work harder than she? Am I not a better cook? Can I not make better coats of fur? But see, little Sut has finer furs than Om and is fatter. And all who come now pass by our cave, except at the great feasts, or when they are sick and in trouble, and go to talk with Wang and look at Suta. Is she so much better to look at than Oma?"

But Ang comforted her with wisdom that had come from long broodings under the shadow of the Keeper of Secrets. "The Giver has differing gifts. To the fire he gives one, to the water another, to the earth another. To Suta he gave the love of beauty; to you he gave the love of doing and making; and the joy of doing is greater than the joy of having. To each her gifts as the Great One wills. And I would rather be the man of Oma than of Suta." So Oma was comforted, though she often sighed wistfully as she saw men and women go by to the cave of Wang or watched Suta deftly mold some new thought into the yielding clay.

From "Around the Fire", by Hanford M. Burr.    
Courtesy of Association Press.

[Pg 187]


This drill will not only test your ability to follow printed directions, but also your ability to exercise a careful choice of words. Follow the directions very closely.

1. Arrange your paper with your name on the first and your grade on the second line. Beginning with the fourth line, in the margin, write the figures 1 to 10.

2. Below are ten sets of words. In each case, the first word is followed by four other words, one of which is exactly opposite in meaning to the first word. You are going to find these opposites. Look at group one. high is the first word. Of the four words that follow it, which do you think is the exact opposite of high? Of course it is low. Write this pair of opposites after figure 1 on your paper as follows:

1. high low

3. After figure 2, write the second pair of opposites:

2. great small

Complete the exercise by selecting the opposites from each remaining group, and writing them after the proper figure on your paper. When you have finished put down your pencil and wait quietly for the others.

1. high (sky, low, above, deep).
2. great (less, large, small, beautiful).
3. hill (mountain, valley, high, river).
4. many (few, more, plenty, less).
5. gradual (quick, slowly, sudden, degree).
6. wound (sword, nurse, heal, bind).
7. light (bright, sun, shadow, darkness).
8. straight (long, uneven, twist, crooked).
9. land (plain, water, farm, river).
10. spring (fall, cool, October, green).

[Pg 188]


This story might have been named "Gossip". When you have read it through, tell why this would be a good name for it.

You should all begin reading at the same moment. Your teacher will divide you into three groups, as explained before the story on page 106, and ask you the questions at the end of the story.

"That is a terrible affair!" said a Hen; and she said it in a quarter of the town where the occurrence had not happened. "That is a terrible affair in the poultry-house. I cannot sleep alone to-night! It is quite fortunate that there are many of us on the roost together!" And she told a tale, at which the feathers of the other birds stood on end, and the cock's comb fell down flat. It's quite true!

But we will begin at the beginning; and the beginning begins in a poultry-house in another part of the town. The sun went down, and the fowls jumped up on their perch to roost. There was a Hen, with white feathers and short legs, who laid her right number of eggs, and was a respectable hen in every way; as she flew up on to the roost she pecked herself with her beak, and a little feather fell out.

"There it goes!" said she; "the more I peck myself the handsomer I grow!" And she said it quite merrily, for she was a joker among the hens, though, as I have said, she was very respectable; and then she went to sleep.

It was dark all around; hen sat by hen; but the one that sat next to the merry hen did not sleep: she heard and she didn't hear, as one should do in this world if one wishes to live in quiet; but she could not refrain from telling it to her next neighbor.

"Did you hear what was said here just now? I name no names; but here is a hen who wants to peck her feathers out[Pg 189] to look well. If I were a cock I should despise her." Then she too went to sleep.

And just above the hens sat the Owl, with her husband and her little owlets; the family had sharp ears, and they all heard every word that the neighboring Hen had spoken, and they rolled their eyes, and the Mother-Owl clapped her wings and said:

"Don't listen to it! But I suppose you heard what was said there? I heard it with my own ears, and one must hear much before one's ears fall off. There is one among the fowls who has so completely forgotten what is becoming conduct in a hen that she pulls out all her feathers, and then lets the cock see her."

"Prenez garde aux enfants," said the Father-Owl. "That's not fit for the children to hear."

"I'll tell it to the neighbor owl; she's a very proper owl to associate with." And she flew away.

"Hoo! hoo! to-whoo!" they both screeched in front of the neighbor's dovecote to the doves within. "Have you heard it? Have you heard it? Hoo! hoo! there's a hen who has pulled out all her feathers for the sake of the cock. She'll die with cold, if she not dead already."

"Coo! coo! Where, where?" cried the Pigeons.

"In the neighbor's poultry-yard. I've as good as seen it myself. It's hardly proper to repeat the story, but it's quite true!"

"Believe it! believe every single word of it!" cooed the Pigeons, and they cooed down into their own poultry-yard. "There's a hen, and some say that there are two of them that have plucked out all their feathers, that they may not look like the rest, and that they may attract the cock's attention. That's a bold game, for one may catch cold and die of a fever, and they are both dead."

[Pg 190]

"Wake up! wake up!" crowed the Cock, and he flew up on the plank; his eyes were still very heavy with sleep, but yet he crowed. "Three hens have died of an unfortunate attachment to a cock. They have plucked out all their feathers. That's a terrible story. I won't keep it to myself; let it travel farther."

"Let it travel farther!" piped the bats; and the fowls clucked and the cocks crowed, "Let it go farther! let it go farther!" And so the story traveled from poultry-yard to poultry-yard, and at last came back to the place from which it had gone forth.

"Five fowls," it was told, "have plucked out all their feathers to show which of them had become thinnest out of love to the cock; and then they have pecked each other, and fallen down dead to the shame and disgrace of their families, and to the great loss of the proprietor."

And the hen who had lost the little loose feather, of course did not know her own story again; and as she was a very respectable hen, she said:

"I despise those fowls; but there are many of that sort. One ought not to hush up such a thing, and I shall do what I can that the story may get into the papers, and then it will be spread over all the country, and that will serve those fowls right, and their families too."

It was put into the newspaper; it was printed; and it's quite true—that one little feather may swell till it becomes five fowls.

Hans Christian Andersen.


1. Are you in the same group you were the last time the class was divided in this way?

2. What was the remark out of which all the gossip grew?

3. How may "one little feather become five fowls"?

[Pg 191]


This exercise is given to see if you can follow directions. Follow each direction as you read it. Do not wait for others to start, but begin now.

1. Arrange your paper with your name on the first line and your grade on the second. At the left hand side of your paper number the next ten lines from number 1 to number 10.

2. The words name is a John boy's do not make a good sentence, but if the words are arranged in order they form a good sentence: John is a boy's name. This sentence is true. In the same way, the words books made of iron are, in this order do not make a good sentence, but arranged in the right order they form a good sentence: Books are made of iron. This sentence is not true.

3. Here are ten groups of words which can be rearranged into good sentences. When they are rearranged in their right order, some will be true and some will be false. Look at the first set of words. Do not write the words in their right order, but see what they would say if rearranged. If what they would say is true, write the word true after figure 1 on your paper; but if what they would say is not true, write the word false after figure 1. Do this with each group of words.

1. Brazil for noted coffee is its
2. largest Rhode Island in the state is the Union
3. the John Hancock signed Independence Declaration of
4. sugar products and rice of are the South
5. Columbus the New York discovered of city
6. important San Francisco on city Pacific coast is an the
7. famous a William Tell American was
8. Camel tusks the has like an and elephant a trunk
9. return songbirds the spring time the in
10. snow Panama land of is a ice and

[Pg 192]


You have heard about the early peoples who found out how to use tools, how to build fires, how to make clothes out of skins of animals, and how to do all the other everyday things that once had to be done for the very first time. Science has found out for us the facts about how all these things were done first. But in the old days, before there was any knowledge of science, people had to explain such matters as best they could, by means of legends, such as that of Prometheus, who, as you have heard, stole fire from heaven. Here is a legend that suggests how water was first tamed and made a servant of man.

In the days of old, when wonderful things happened, there lived in a pleasant dwelling beside a brook in the forest a young girl named Sella, a name which means "a shadow". Although she was very beautiful, so that everyone admired her, she did not like to stay very much of the time with other people. She liked better to gather flowers on the bank of the stream, or to sit in the shade of a great rock listening to the sweet murmur of the flowing water. It was her delight to wander up the stream, tracing to the source in the mountains each of the little brooks that fed the larger one. She knew every little spring that stole forth from under a hanging rock, and every little rill that came trickling down the bare hillside. Often she rowed her little boat out on the lake or on the wide river into which the stream ran.

In the days when Sella lived girls were not taught anything except the things that it was thought belonged to woman's place, such as sewing, the keeping of the house, and the art of making one's self charming and agreeable. For a girl to go out into the world to make her own way as girls do now was an unheard-of thing. Girls must stay[Pg 193] at home and leave adventure to the men of the family. Sella was not at all contented with such an arrangement. She looked at her two brothers enviously, thinking, "If I were only a boy, I could follow the river down to the sea and see all the strange peoples and customs in other parts of the world. I should like to see what kind of houses they have, and how they build their stately ships, what kind of flowers grow in their gardens, and what fruits ripen in their orchards. Here men make their living by raising sheep, but there I hear they sprinkle the great plains with corn, which springs up and ripens and is harvested to give bread to all the nations. I long to see all these things, and I would have seen them, long ago, if I were not so unlucky as to be a girl."

One morning in early spring Sella came to her mother in breathless excitement. "See, mother dear," she said, "what I have found on the bank of the stream!" And she showed a pair of white slippers, spangled and embroidered in silver. "See, my name is worked on the edge; and just look, mother, they fit me!"

"To be sure, they are very dainty," said her prudent mother. "But they do not belong to you. Perhaps some careless passer-by dropped them there, or perhaps they were put there as a snare to lead you into harm. I don't like the look of the letters embroidered on them; they don't seem to me to spell your name, but rather to look like magic signs that may work you evil. Nay, daughter, you must not wear them."

So Sella hung the slippers in the porch, so that anyone who had lost them could see them as she passed by. No one claimed them, however. At last, one day in May, Sella did not appear at the noonday meal. They looked for her in all her favorite places and shouted her name[Pg 194] through the woods, but all in vain. At night they went out with torches still seeking her. All the next day they searched, climbing high into the mountains. Towards evening of the second day, when they had given up hope, suddenly Sella appeared at her mother's side where she sat alone and sad.

"Oh, mother, forgive me," she cried. "I just tried the slippers on for a moment, and before I could take them off again I found them carrying me along as if my feet had wings. At the bank of the stream there waited for me a lovely creature, with flowing hair and filmy green garments. She took my hand and led me right into the stream, and together we went along in the midst of it. Gayly we leaped the crag and swam the pool and glided between shady meadow banks. The stream broadened and became a river, and still we went onward, past stately towns, and under leaning masts of gallant ships, till at last we reached the sea and passed below its waves. The seaweed grew on tall stems like trees, and I could see the coral, the gleaming fish, and the rosy shells lying on the white sand at the bottom. Herds of sea creatures went by us, dolphins and whales and even sharks, but they turned aside to make room for us."

Bella's mother interrupted her. "This is just a dream, dear Sella, a vain dream."

"No, mother, for here is what my guide gave me to prove my story true." And Sella showed a sea-green scarf, adding, "And she told me to keep the slippers, and that whenever I put them on I could go down to the bottom of the ocean again and see all the lovely things. Oh, mother, it is so beautiful there! But after we had wandered about a long time I grew weary, and longed for my dear mountain home. And so she brought me back; and now I will never[Pg 195] leave your side again." And she flung her arms about her mother and kissed her, begging forgiveness once again.

Sella kept her promise. But, sadly enough, she did not have to keep it long, for in less than two years from that May day her mother died. The little mountain home was very sad. But after her first grief passed, Sella was very often absent from the household, and her father and brothers and older sister knew that she was away in the world of waters with her friends the water-nymphs. When she was at home she often sat looking blankly into space, with her thoughts far away. Her brothers tried to persuade her not to go away from them so often, but she only looked at them sorrowfully, and wept, saying never a word in answer to their pleading.

At last there came a day of merriment and good cheer in the quiet home. Bella's sister was to be married. The guests came from hill and valley in all the country round. Sella welcomed them, beautiful and calm as usual, with her clear blue eyes, fair hair, and skin as white as the water-lily. She looked like a water nymph herself, so much of her time had been spent in her beloved water.

Now it happened that that very morning the older of her two brothers had been out upon the hillside and had seen Sella come out from the stream, and had noticed where she put her slippers in a cleft of rock behind a tree. Now, under cover of the merriment of the wedding while all the youths and maidens were dancing, the two brothers stole away to the spot where the slippers lay hidden, took them out, followed the brook down a little way to where its current flowed very rapidly, and dropped them in. The stream seemed to lift welcoming hands to catch them, and they slid rapidly out of sight. Then the brothers returned to the house.

[Pg 196]

As evening came near, Sella grew tired of the feasting and dancing and noise and longed for the quiet that she could find below the sea. So she ran out to the brook to get her slippers. They were gone! She searched all along the brookside, but could not find them. Frightened, she ran wildly from place to place, and searched in the same spots over and over. Someone had taken them; and it did not take her long to think who the someone was. She ran to the house and charged her brothers with the theft. They frankly told her all that they had done, saying that it was because they loved her so. "We could not bear to have the cold world of waters steal our sister from us. Now you can never go away from us again."

When Sella heard how the stream had seized and carried away her precious slippers, she gave a broken-hearted shriek. "They are gone forever! Oh, how cruel you have been to me!" And she left them and ran away to her room, locked her door, and would not let anyone in to comfort her. All night she wept and mourned, knowing that never again could she visit the sea caves and meadows where she so loved to roam, nor talk with the gentle sea-nymphs. All the next day she wandered alone by the brook, envying its shining waters which danced along on their way to the sea. But by the next day she became more used to her loss, and began to resolve that since it was no use to mourn for what was gone, she would begin a new life whose days should be given to quiet tasks of good in the great world. She knew that she had learned many things about the water that men everywhere would be glad to know. In patient, loving service she would forget her loss.

So the years passed. Sella still loved to haunt the springs and brooks as in her cheerful childhood. She taught men to know the right places in which to dig wells,[Pg 197] so as to be sure to find water beneath the earth. She showed them how to build aqueducts by which to bring the water from the mountain streams to towns far away from any water. She showed them how to tame the rushing stream and make its water drive the millwheel. She bade them build cisterns and pools and reservoirs to catch the rain-water in the wet season, so that in the dry months of the year it could be carried in canals into the parched fields to irrigate them. Everywhere Sella's name was loved and honored.

Bryant, our first American poet, who has told this story in lovely verses which you must read some day, speaks of Sella's age and death in the lines which follow.

"Still she kept, as age came on,
Her stately presence; still her eyes looked forth
From under their calm brows as brightly clear
As the transparent wells by which she sat
So oft in childhood. Still she kept her fair
Unwrinkled features, though her locks were white.
A hundred times had summer, since her birth,
Opened the water-lily on the lakes,
So old traditions tell, before she died.
A hundred cities mourned her.——By the brook
That rippling ran beside the cottage door
Where she was born, they reared her monument.
Ere long the current parted and flowed round
The marble base, forming a little isle,
And there the flowers that love the running stream,
Iris and orchid, and the cardinal flower,
Crowded and hung caressingly around
The stone engraved with Sella's honored name."
Mabel Dodge Holmes.

[Pg 198]


Here is a real boy story in real boy talk.

It is a first-class story to outline. Read it through—you will be so much interested that you can't help reading fast—then close the book and make an outline.

I am the ghost of Terrible Terry! I have murdered ten men in cold blood and buried their bones, in the dark of the moon, on the crest of Death-Rattle Hill! You will meet me there at dark on the evening of October 30! If you fail me BEWARE. (Following which was a crudely drawn skull and cross bones.)


That was all George Taylor could say as he read the letter which his father had just brought home in the evening mail. The mere thought of Death-Rattle Hill after dark was enough to make a fellow's heart jump into his throat, for Death-Rattle Hill had received its name from a popular superstition that grew out of the murder there, in pioneer days, of an old trapper.

This trapper, "Dad" Smith, as he was known on the frontier, was returning to his cabin in the wilderness, after selling his winter catch of furs, when he was attacked at dusk by "Terrible Terry", a notorious desperado of the early days. He was found the next day with more than a score of knife-wounds in his body.

Legend credited Terry with numerous other ghastly crimes until at last he met his fate in a manner which remains a mystery. His body was found in the woods not far from the spot where Smith was murdered. A rifle ball had passed through his throat. From then on stories were circulated concerning peculiar noises that could be heard at dusk on the hill. These noises, so the tales agreed, resembled[Pg 199] a choking, gasping sound—such as a man might make in struggling for breath. So it came about that this hill came to be known throughout all the country as "Death-Rattle Hill."

"Gosh!" said Taylor once more as these thoughts went racing through his head. Then he jerked his cap from its hook in the hall and ran down the alley to see if any other of the boys had received a similar message.

Carrots Crawford, Pepper Perkins and several other members of the troop were talking excitedly.

"Hey, George," they called as the scout appeared, "did you get one, too?"

"Do you mean a letter from Terrible Terry?"

"Sure thing," said Pepper; "all the fellows got them. It's just another of Mr. James' stunts. Say, Scouts, remember that party we had at headquarters last Hallowe'en? Didn't we have a circus! And I'll bet this year we'll have a bigger time yet!"

After much discussion the group broke, and only Taylor and Pepper Perkins remained. If the departing scouts had been thinking less about the queer noises that were supposed to be heard on Death-Rattle Hill, they might have observed that these two leading lights of Glenwood troop had their heads together in earnest consultation.

It was ten days until the last of October; ten days filled with the greatest anticipation for the members of Glenwood troop; although every scout in the troop felt a peculiar sinking feeling at the pit of the stomach at the thought of Death-Rattle Hill, not one of them would have admitted it, and not one of them thought of failing to keep his appointment with "Terrible Terry", especially after the rumor was spread that each scout should go armed with a fork, a spoon and a tin cup. The boys agreed among themselves[Pg 200] that they would meet at troop headquarters and march in a body to Death-Rattle Hill.

Hallowe'en evening came at last. The members of Glenwood Troop reported at their headquarters to a man, quaking inwardly if the truth were known, but prepared to keep their rendezvous with the ghost of a cut-throat in the most haunted spot in all the land! Great was their relief when Mr. James appeared and said he had thought it best to accompany the boys on such a dangerous undertaking.

They started out, rather more boisterously than usual, laughing, shouting and singing, but the nearer they got to Death-Rattle Hill the quieter they became. By the time they reached the crest of the hill they were huddled together like sheep.

"Here we are, boys," came the Scoutmaster's cheery voice at last as the scouts reached a little clearing between two tall Norway pines. Not far from one of the trees a huge bonfire had been built. Mr. James struck a match, the flames ran quickly through the dry sticks and logs, and in almost no time the clearing was light as day.

With the lighting of the fire, the spell that had been cast over the boys by thoughts of Terrible Terry was partially broken, and they entered into the games and stunts that Mr James had planned for them with their customary spirit.

With their hands tied behind their backs they tried to bite apples suspended from the branches of the pine by long strings and bobbed for apples in a big tub of water. They had boxing and wrestling bouts, dug pennies with their teeth out of shallow pans partly filled with flour, held a war-dance around the fire and yelled as only hungry boys can yell when Mr. James produced a pail of steaming cocoa,[Pg 201] a big box of "dogs", a pan full of doughnuts, and a box of red apples.

But in spite of all they could do to forget the stories of Death-Rattle Hill they could not escape a vague, uneasy feeling, and many a furtive glance was cast into the surrounding trees and bushes.

When the last drop of cocoa had disappeared and the last red apple had followed the "dogs" and doughnuts to their doom, the boys crawled close to the glowing embers of the fire and, following their usual custom, begged Mr. James for a story.

The fire was slowly dying, and the occasional flickering flames cast fantastic shadows on the hazel bushes and the trees.

"We have all heard more or less about strange sights and sounds in places where men have met with violent death," said Mr. James by way of beginning his yarn. "For instance, I have been told that in this very clearing there grows a peculiar red moss which traces in exact outline the spots on the earth where the old trapper Smith's life-blood dyed the sod. Hunters have told me that no animals ever cross this clearing—that in the dead of winter not even a rabbit track breaks the smooth expanse of snow which is marred only by a ghastly crimson stain where poor old Smith's body was found.

"But let me get on with my story. Thirteen years ago this very night an old hunchback peddler, who had been selling his wares in the backwoods settlements, lost his bearings in the forest and found himself at dusk in this very clearing. Being completely exhausted from his wanderings, he decided to make himself as comfortable as possible for the night. He built a fire in the early evening, and, as the embers slowly settled into ashes fell into a half sleep leaning against his pack.

[Pg 202]

"Just how long he dozed by the fire he could not tell, nor could he remember exactly what wakened him, yet suddenly he was startled into consciousness, every nerve a-tingle with a sense of impending danger. Some power he could not sense drew his attention irresistibly to a huge pine tree—that one right there!

"With his eyes starting from their sockets he sat incapable of movement, waiting—waiting—when suddenly——"

Out of the pine on which every scout was focusing his gaze came an unmistakable choking, gasping sound.

An instant later a faintly glowing light appeared.

"Great goodness! Look there!" exclaimed Patrol Leader Crawford in a husky voice.

With a piercing shriek a horrible apparition floated out of the branches of the pine. Its white hair was covered with ghastly clots of red. Its arms waved wildly, moving the folds of a flowing white garment splotched with blood.

Transfixed with horror, the boys sat frozen in their tracks as THE THING rushed toward them.

Then there came a huge splash in the bobbing tub behind them and an unmistakably human voice exclaimed, "Oh, thunder!" The voice belonged to Pepper Perkins, and the Scoutmaster's flashlight revealed its owner in a sitting posture in the tub of water, whence he had fallen from a low branch of a tree directly over his head.

Meanwhile the "ghost" that had floated out of the pine was having troubles of its own. It stopped floating with a sudden jerk and hung suspended in mid-air, with a pair of khaki legs dangling beneath the flowing garment and kicking around for something solid to stand on, while a very unghostly voice pleaded, "Gosh, sakes! Can't you help a feller down?"

A few turns of the flashlight revealed the whole plot.[Pg 203] The "ghost" had floated on a wire stretched from the huge pine to the smaller one across the clearing. The faintly glowing light was a flashlight enclosed in a paper sack, the horrible head-dress a piece of old fur robe smeared with red paint, and the "shriek" a siren whistle.

You have heard how Death-Rattle Hill came by its name. And now you know how it came about that George Taylor of the Glenwood Scouts acquired the name of "Terry"—a name which he bears to this day.

Courtesy of "Boys' Life".     
Copyrighted, 1918, by "Boys' Life", The Boy Scouts' Magazine.


All begin at the same moment. You may take thirty seconds to prepare to tell this story.

An American private spied a rooster prowling around a farm house in No Man's Land just after the Americans had captured Very. Being hungry, and having an appetite for roast chicken, this American private decided to crawl up on the rooster and trap him in the building.

The American was about to lay his hands on the astonished rooster when a German entered the rear door of the building bent on the same mission. Both were so surprised that they stood for a moment and glared at each other, then the American motioned for the German to do a right flank on the prey they were after and both closed in on him. The rooster was captured by the American, who later returned to the American lines with both rooster and German in tow.

Later, at the regimental P. C., the German roasted the chicken for his captor, who shared it with him.

Association Men.

[Pg 204]


Here is one of the beautiful Greek myths that everyone is supposed to know.

Try to read it so carefully in five minutes that you can tell it from start to finish without being questioned or prompted. Your teacher will let two or three of you tell the story. Perhaps some of you can do it well enough to tell it to one of the lower classes in the school.

In the ancient days in Greece, people believed not only in the great gods and goddesses, such as the god of the sea, the god of the sun, the goddess of the moon, or the goddess of the harvest, but also in many less important beings who took care of smaller things in the world of nature. In every river lived a god, for whom the stream was named. The woods were full of fair maidens called nymphs, whom mortal eyes could not see. They had various names, according to the particular objects which were their care. The nymphs who lived each in her own tree were called dryads; those who dwelt in the springs and brooks were naiads; while those whose home was in the rocks and hills were oreads.

Of all the mountain nymphs, or oreads, the most beautiful was a maiden named Echo. She was one of the troop of maidens who followed and attended Diana, the goddess of the woodlands. Echo was very faithful to all her tasks, devoted to her mistress, and beloved by all her companions. Her one fault was that, like many another girl, she was too fond of talking. Her tongue ran all day long. It did not matter whether or not she had anything important to talk about; talk she must. The other nymphs were used to it, and didn't pay much attention; indeed, they hardly listened to her, a thing which often happens to people who never[Pg 205] know when to stop talking. But Juno, the queen of the gods, one day grew so tired of Echo's ceaseless chatter that she condemned her to lose her power to speak, except to repeat the words of someone who spoke to her.

This was hard enough when it meant simply that the maiden could no longer talk to her companions. If you have ever had so severe a cold that you have lost your voice for a day or two, you know how many things you think of that you want to say simply because you are unable to say them. That was poor Echo's case, only it was to last forever instead of for a few days. But far worse than this was to happen to the unfortunate maiden. One day, not long after she had lost her tongue, as we say, she saw for the first time the beautiful youth Narcissus, son of one of the river gods. From that moment Echo's heart was gone as well as her voice, for she fell in love immediately. But alas! how could she let him know it? She could not speak at all, except to mimic his last words whenever he spoke. And his words did not at all express the feelings which she wanted to utter. For instance, when Narcissus, who did not care anything about the lovesick Echo, and who was anxious to get away, cried to her, "Let us leave one another," she answered with all her heart, "One another," and tried to hasten after him. But he could not or would not understand, and did not wait for her.

At last Narcissus, who you can readily see was not as kind as he was beautiful, growing utterly weary of having the forlorn nymph pursue him, said rudely to her, "I cannot bear to come near you." "Near you," repeated Echo with all her heart, ready to fling her arms about his neck.

"Hands off!" he cried, starting back. "I would rather die than thou shouldst have me." "Have me," pleaded[Pg 206] the unhappy Echo, but all in vain. The cruel youth would have nothing to do with her. From that time on she withdrew herself from the company of the other nymphs, and wandered alone in hidden caves and among the remotest cliffs of the mountains. Gradually she faded away till there was nothing left of her but her voice, which still repeated the last part of any sound she heard. Sometimes when you are in the woods or mountains, if you call aloud, you will hear your own voice seeming to come back to you like an answer. It is not your voice, you see, but that of the unfortunate oread; so we call the sound that rings and rolls along in answer to our voices, by the maiden's name, Echo.

Perhaps you would like to know what happened to the unkind Narcissus. Echo was not the only maiden whom he scorned. He avoided all the nymphs, for the only person whom he really loved was himself. As time went on he loved himself more and more, especially as he saw the reflection of his own beautiful face in the water. He spent his days stooping over the deep, still pool that made the best mirror. He talked to his own image in the still surface; he tried to embrace it, stooping so far over that he almost fell in. But the mirrored face made no response to all his pleadings. He was being well paid for his treatment of Echo. At last, in despair because his love was not returned, he pined away and died of a broken heart. Like other people who love themselves best, he got no happiness from his vanity and selfishness.

Perhaps you are wondering why the youth whom Echo loved bore the name of our delicate white spring flower. It is because that flower first sprang up from the ground on the spot where the beautiful Narcissus was buried.

Mabel Dodge Holmes.

[Pg 207]


Before you begin to read this selection, look up the word reclaim.

This is a good selection for outlining. You can write four or five topics that will cover the substance of the piece.

Your teacher will keep track of the time it takes each of you to read the selection and make your outline.

There are some learned people who tell us that a great many years ago the island which we call England, Scotland, and Wales was one with the continent of Europe. They say that the sea gradually made its way through a stretch of low-lying land, till at last Great Britain was completely cut off from the continent. We all know that the Eastern counties of England which face the little country of Holland are just as flat and marshy as the opposite shores. The farmers and laborers in these countries are continually endeavoring to make good pasture-land of the unhealthy marshes and fens, as they are called, and each year sees acres of land reclaimed and turned to good use; but also each year a little land is stolen from these counties by the greedy sea. The patient Dutch people on the other shore are carrying on the same kind of work. They make wonderful dykes and drive the sea always a little further and further back; and though much of their country is actually beneath the level of the sea, they jealously guard the treasure they have captured, with so much perseverance and energy that the tyrant sea is kept in subjection. Of course, as the land lies lower than the water, the natural result would be that the water would flood the land unless it were kept out by an embankment; and this wonderful little nation, so brave and daring as to defy the sea, have surrounded their land with dykes, which are huge banks[Pg 208] towering above the lowlands of the country, and preventing the sea from obtaining entrance. Of course, these dykes could be made only gradually as the sea was turned from one spot to another by dams and locks, and these facts will give you a far better proof than any other I could find of the wonderful character and the great courage and perseverance of a nation which has reclaimed its fatherland from the sea.

You will not be surprised to be told that such a land is very damp and misty. All the surface is cut up by innumerable canals. If you could see the whole country from a height, it would look like an enormous puzzle. It consists of hundreds of green patches cut up by the waterways, and decorated with red-roofed villages and towns. Through all of these canals flows the same water; all of them are connected with one another. Here and there the canals are wide, and bear much traffic on their placid surfaces. Through miles of green fields wander little baby canals, draining the pasture-lands, and bravely carrying barges which drift slowly in single file from one busy centre to another.

There are plenty of railways, but the trains are generally slow, and in many places the land perceptibly gives way as the heavy train presses it, so most of the conveyance is done on the canals.

It is still part of the everyday life of Holland to reclaim the stretches of mud and marsh from the sea. When this has been done, the land is first enclosed with a dyke to prevent any water flowing into it. On the edge of this dyke wind-mills are erected, each of which works a pump. You remember how every picture of a Dutch landscape shows a country dotted with windmills with wide-spreading arms and sails. As the mills draw up the water, it is discharged[Pg 209] into a canal, which takes it to the sea. Only fifty years ago, an immense piece of submerged land called the Haarlem Lake was drained and rendered fit for cultivation, and one of the favorite projects of certain Dutch ministers is the draining of the Zuyder Zee, an enormous stretch of water of which you have certainly heard, and which once must have been dry land.

When I traveled in Holland, one of the greatest discomforts which I experienced was the want of good drinking water. The Dutch people are used to it, and drink a good deal of tea and coffee; but both are taken so strong and so bitter, that, even if made with the purest water, they would be undrinkable for you and me. Once, when I was staying in a tiny village called Volendam, I had taken a little crying child home to his mother, whom I knew. She wanted to wash his face which I could hardly see through dirt and tears, and from where do you think she drew her water? She lifted a loose board in the floor of her room, and there, immediately underneath, was a canal which passed under her house. The house was built on piles over the water, and the whole family used this dirty water for everything—to wash in and to cook with and to drink. Besides much dirt, there were two or three tiny fish in the bucket that she took up when I was there, and when I asked her if she filtered the water at all for drinking, she shook her head, not understanding the reason for anything of the kind. So I told her how much better it would be for her and her family if she boiled the water before drinking it; but she replied that she thought this would take away all the taste. Just imagine wanting your water to taste of dirt and fishes!

From "A Peep at the Netherlands",    
by Beatrix Jungman.

[Pg 210]


Here is an article from a cyclopedia for schools. The farther you go in school, the more frequently you will need to consult such books. In such cases you should learn to turn quickly to the part of this article you want without reading it all through. Sometimes the topic you are looking up will be the same as one of the headings in the book. Often it will not. Instead of reading the whole article, however, you will generally be able to judge what heading is likely to cover your topic.

If you don't find what you want, keep looking. For example, if you wished to find more about wheat, oats, poultry or cattle you would turn to other volumes of this cyclopedia and read the special article on the subject you were seeking.

Your teacher will assign different individuals or different sections of the class one or more of the following topics covered in this selection. Of course you will not think that you have in this brief selection anything like a complete discussion of each of these topics. You will, however, find something interesting about each of them.

1. How much time it takes to raise a bushel of corn.

2. How barren areas can be made productive.

3. Four causes of progress in agriculture.

4. Four different kinds of agriculture.

5. Where America raises her cereals.

6. What agriculture does for each of us.

7. Good roads and the farmer.

8. Things the farmer has to fight.

9. Truck farming.

10. Where animals thrive.

11. Agriculture experiment stations.

12. Changes in agriculture methods.

Agriculture is the art of cultivating the soil to produce material for feeding and clothing the human race. It is the oldest of all occupations. "The first farmer," says Emerson, "was the first man, and all historic nobility rests on possession and use of the land." Agriculture is also the most[Pg 211] widely-extended of all occupations, and it lies at the foundation of all other industries. Daniel Webster once said, "When tillage begins, other arts follow. The farmers, therefore, are the founders of civilization." Unless man were fed and clothed the race would perish.

Illustrating its Importance.

Mr. and Mrs. Adams with their children, John, aged 14, and Mary, aged 12, lived in the city. Like many other city children, John and Mary knew but little of the country, and did not seriously consider farming or anything connected with it. Their father and mother, however, had come from the farm, and they decided to help John and Mary to obtain correct ideas of the country and of a life such as they lived in their younger days.

"John, where did this bread come from?" asked Mr. Adams, at dinner.

"Why, mother bought it at the baker's, I suppose."

"Very well, but where did the baker get it?"

"Oh, I know," said Mary, "he makes it."

"But what is it made of?" continued the father.

"There is flour in it," said John, "and water, and—and—lots of other things."

"A boy never knows anything about cooking; let me tell," said Mary. "Bread is made of flour, water and yeast and—what else do they put in it, mother?"

"I don't see as you know much more about it than I do," said John.

"You children can learn how to make bread some other time," said Mr. Adams; "I want to know where the baker got his flour."

"He bought it of the wholesale grocer," replied John.

"Well, where did the grocer get it?"

"That is about as far as I can go," said John. "I have often wondered where all the things we eat come from, but I have so many things to study in school that I don't have time to read about anything more."

"Well," replied the father, "suppose we make a little study of these things at dinner. Let us begin with the bread. What you and Mary have said is true, but we need to look into the subject a little further, if we would know the real source from which we obtain bread and all other articles of food. The real source of all these is the farm, and were it not for the farmers all the people who live in the city, as we do, should soon be without food."

"Why, I never thought of that before; I never supposed the farmer amounted to much, anyway," said John. Mary expressed a similar idea, and both asked their father to tell them about those common articles of food which we all eat without giving a thought to the source from which they come or the labor required to prepare them for our use.

During the next few days Mr. Adams took the children on a number of imaginary journeys. With him they visited in fancy the great wheat fields of the Dakotas and Canada, the corn belt in Illinois and Iowa, the[Pg 212] cattle ranches of Texas and Montana, the fruit orchards of the Pacific states, the dairy farms and creameries of Wisconsin, the sugar plantations of Louisiana, the beet farms of Michigan and Colorado, and the poultry farms near some of our great cities. Then he took them to far-off lands—to the coffee plantations of Brazil, the tea gardens of Formosa, the rice plantations of China and the spice groves of India.

Before these imaginary excursions were ended, John and Mary learned that everything they ate, except salt, came from a farm in some part of the world and that agriculture was carried on in every country. But Mr. Adams did not stop here. In the same delightful way he led the children to the study of cotton, flax, wool, and silk, so that they were convinced that we depend upon the farm for what we wear as well as for what we eat. In their minds the farmer at once became a very important individual.

Progress of Agriculture.—Agriculture began when the first man selected plants for his food. His next step was to scratch the ground with a stick and plant seed. Then he took a forked stick and made a plow of it. Two or more men hauled this plow while another held it in position. But this labor was too hard, so man tamed the ox and the ass and made them do the hauling and the carrying of his burdens, as well. From these simple beginnings, agriculture has advanced through the centuries until to-day traction engines haul over our great wheat fields gang plows that turn more than fifty furrows at a time. Later these same engines haul over the fields of ripened grain a machine which at one operation harvests, thrashes and sacks the grain ready for market—does everything, one humorist says, except to cash the check for the crop.

Such has been the progress in agriculture since the middle of the last century that the labor of producing a bushel of wheat with the most modern appliances has been reduced from a little over three hours to about ten minutes. Formerly it required four and one-half hours' labor to produce a bushel of corn; now it requires less than forty minutes. Then, it took thirty-five and one-half hours' labor to grow a ton of hay; now, it takes eleven hours and thirty-four minutes. But this is not all. Production has been increased many fold; new and better varieties of grains, vegetables, fruits and live stock are being constantly produced; the use of agricultural machinery has enabled the farmer to give more attention to the business side of his affairs, and the best farms are now operated on a systematic plan which includes both the fields and the home.

Causes of Progress.—While the progress of agriculture may seem to have been slow, it has advanced about as rapidly as other arts. The more rapid advance of recent times is due chiefly to the following causes:

Transportation.—It is of no advantage to the farmer to raise crops that he cannot market; therefore, good roads form one of the most essential conditions to his success. Of these[Pg 213] the country has far too few, but railways have become so numerous that most farms are now within a few miles of a station if not directly on the railway itself. Increased facilities for marketing his crop have greatly increased the farmers' production.

Machinery.—The machines which have done most towards the progress of agriculture are the harvester, or reaping machine, the gang plow, the seeder and the horse hoe. What these have accomplished in reducing the cost of production is told in the preceding paragraph. Without these inventions cultivation of the large farms in the Prairie states and the Canadian provinces of the Northwest would be impossible. Many other machines have also contributed their share. Among these are the steam thrasher, the traction engine, the gasoline engine, and the cream separator. Moreover, we must not forget the improvement in the simpler farm implements such as the hoe, the spade, the rake, and the ax, which, by being made lighter and of better material than in the long-ago, have enabled those using them to do more work with less expenditure of strength.

Chemistry.—The application of chemistry to soils, plants, and fertilizers lies at the foundation of scientific agriculture. The farmer can now learn from the nearest agricultural experiment station what fertilizer is best suited to his soil and what crops he can grow with greatest success. Agricultural chemistry is now applied to the study of soils, of plant food and of fertilizers wherever there is an agricultural college.

Education.—Not many years ago the average farmer was glad to express his contempt for what he styled "book farming". Happily, that day is past, and agricultural education (see subheading, below) now occupies an important position in the educational systems of all civilized countries. In the United States and Canada the demand for graduates from agricultural colleges and high schools is greater than these institutions are able to supply. Furthermore, the outlook for supervisors and teachers of agriculture is so promising that young men from the city constitute no inconsiderable portion of the student body of these institutions. This is the beginning of a right sort of movement from the city to the country, and it is increasing.

Scientific Agriculture.—All the foregoing movements have combined to make agriculture a science as well as an art. The influence of the agricultural colleges and experiment stations extends to the remotest regions, and everywhere the trained scientist is helping the farmer to solve his problems and to make his farm more profitable. No longer can the old hit-or-miss methods maintain themselves in competition with the scientific methods of the "new agriculture", which in the near future will not only render productive vast areas still barren, but also reclaim the so-called "worn-out farms" and repopulate with prosperous families those which have been abandoned.

Prevention of Disease.—The application of scientific methods to the study of those diseases of plants and[Pg 214] animals which are ever robbing the farmer of his profits constitutes one of the most important contributions of science to agriculture, and is saving annually millions of dollars to the farmers. While not all of these diseases are conquered, many of them have been; the ravages of others have been checked, and new victories are gained each year.

Insect Pests.—What has been said about the study of disease applies with equal force to the study of destructive insects. These pests also deprive the farmer of a portion of his income every season, and, now and then, they destroy his crop altogether. Through the discoveries made by the Department of Agriculture at Washington and in Canada by the same department of government, and at the various experiment stations, we are now able to deal successfully with these pests on the American continent.

Branches.—Agriculture is so widely extended over the earth and so varied in its industries that it is naturally divided into a number of branches. While many farmers are interested in several of these branches, each gives special attention to one or two. The farmer in the corn belt, for instance, makes corn the chief product of his land, but he must give enough attention to growing other crops and to dairying to produce sufficient food for his family and live stock, unless he would purchase this food at an expense considerably greater than would be required to raise it. Likewise, the dairy husbandman must raise most of the feed for his herd to make his business profitable.

The following are the chief branches of agriculture in America:

Raising Cereals.—In some regions the soil and climate are especially suited to raising cereals. For instance, Canada, Minnesota and North Dakota are adapted to raising spring wheat, and this constitutes their chief crop. On the other hand, Kansas is especially suited to raising winter wheat. Illinois and Iowa are the great corn states, because of the particular adaptation of the soil and climate of the corn belt to the production of this cereal. The growing of cereals is more widely extended than any other branch of agriculture.

Other Crops.—In some of the Northern states having a cool climate and in Southern Canada, flax is extensively grown on new soil. Potatoes are also successful in these regions. Oats is an extensive crop throughout the northern half of the United States and in most of the Canadian provinces. In Texas, Georgia, South Carolina, and a number of the other Southern states, cotton constitutes the chief source of revenue. Fodder crops, including corn for ensilage, clover, timothy and alfalfa, are also of great importance in those localities where live stock is raised or dairying is the chief line of agricultural industry.

Horticulture.—Horticulture is that branch of agriculture which includes the raising of flowers, garden vegetables, and fruit. The growing of vegetables and other garden produce for market is usually called truck farming, and this branch of horticulture is very common near large[Pg 215] cities and in those localities where soil and climate admit of raising two or more crops a year. The raising of fruit is probably the most extensive branch of horticulture, particularly in those regions which depend upon irrigation for their supply of water. All forms of horticulture are intensified farming—that is, the thorough cultivation of small tracts of land that is highly fertilized.

Live Stock.—Some localities are especially adapted to raising live stock. Iowa and Illinois, for instance raise large numbers of hogs, which are fattened on corn. Iowa also raises beef cattle. Kentucky is noted for its fine horses; Montana, Wyoming, and several other states contain extensive grazing lands where thousands of sheep find pasturage, and in Texas beef cattle are raised in large numbers.

Dairy Husbandry.—Sections of the country having a cool climate, an abundance of pure water, and soil adapted to growing alfalfa and other ensilage crops are suited to dairying, and this branch of agriculture is of great importance in those states.

Poultry.—The proceeds from the poultry raised in the United States exceed those received from the wheat crop; strange as this statement may seem, the hen is a mighty asset. Some poultry is found on nearly every farm, but there are numerous small farms which are devoted entirely to raising chickens, and when rightly managed, they prove a profitable investment.

From "The World Book".    
Courtesy of W. F. Quarrie & Co.


Here is another little nonsense test. Be sure that you do exactly as the test directs.

At the top of your paper copy the longest of these three words: boy, noise, trouble—and then, if there are more than seven letters in the word that you have just written, write the figure 7 underneath the word, but if not, do not write anything but pass on to the next paragraph.

If you think that Christopher Columbus used an ocean steamer to discover America make three crosses at the bottom of your paper, but if you think he must have used a canoe make only two crosses. Now no matter whether there are five days in the week or not, write five days in the center of your paper, sign your first name below it and hand in your answers.

[Pg 216]


Read the poem through as fast as you can, but not so fast as to fail to get the full meaning. When all have finished, your teacher will ask you to write the story the poem tells.

It will be interesting to keep track of the exact time it takes each of you to read the poem and to see whether those who read it more quickly tell the story better than those who read more slowly.

Can you take in every word without speaking, whispering, or moving your lips?

No stir in the air, no stir in the sea,
The ship was as still as she could be,
Her sails from heaven received no motion,
Her keel was steady in the ocean.
Without either sign or sound of their shock
The waves flow over the Inchcape Rock;
So little they rose, so little they fell,
They did not move the Inchcape Bell.
The good old Abbot of Aberbrothok
Had placed that bell on the Inchcape Rock;
On a buoy in the storm it floated and swung,
And over the waves its warning rung.
When the Rock was hid by the surges' swell,
The mariners heard the warning bell;
And then they knew the perilous Rock,
And blest the Abbot of Aberbrothok.
The sun in heaven was shining gay,
All things were joyful on that day;
The sea-birds scream'd as they wheel'd round,
[Pg 217] And there was joyance in their sound.
The buoy of the Inchcape Bell was seen
A darker speck on the ocean green;
Sir Ralph the Rover walk'd his deck,
And he fix'd his eye on the darker speck.
He felt the cheering power of spring,
It made him whistle, it made him sing;
His heart was mirthful to excess,
But the Rover's mirth was wickedness.
His eye was on the Inchcape float;
Quoth he, "My men, put out the boat,
And row me to the Inchcape Rock,
And I'll plague the priest of Aberbrothok."
The boat is lower'd, the boatmen row,
And to the Inchcape Rock they go;
Sir Ralph bent over from the boat,
And he cut the bell from the Inchcape float.
Down sunk the bell, with a gurgling sound,
The bubbles rose and burst around;
Quoth Sir Ralph, "The next who comes to the Rock
Won't bless the Abbot of Aberbrothok."
Sir Ralph the Rover sail'd away,
He scour'd the seas for many a day;
And now grown rich with plundered store,
He steers his course for Scotland's shore.
So thick a haze o'erspreads the sky
They cannot see the sun on high;
The wind hath blown a gale all day,
[Pg 218] At evening it hath died away.
On the deck the Rover takes his stand,
So dark it is they see no land.
Quoth Sir Ralph, "It will be lighter soon,
For there is the dawn of the rising moon."
"Can'st hear," said one, "the breakers roar?
For methinks we should be near the shore;
Now where we are I cannot tell,
But I wish I could hear the Inchcape Bell."
They hear no sound, the swell is strong;
Though the wind hath fallen, they drift along,
Till the vessel strikes with a shivering shock;
Cried they, "It is the Inchcape Rock!"
Sir Ralph the Rover tore his hair,
He curst himself in his despair;
The waves rush in on every side,
The ship is sinking beneath the tide.
But even in his dying fear
One dreadful sound could the Rover hear,
A sound as if with the Inchcape Bell,
The fiends below were ringing his knell.
Robert Southey.


Such a poem as this one is called a ballad. A ballad always tells a story; it is never a very long poem; and it is always a poem of the sort that could be set to music and sung.

Each group of lines in any poem is called a stanza, not a verse, as perhaps you have been used to calling it. In this poem you see that there are stanzas of four lines each.

Two lines that rhyme with each other are called a couplet. How many couplets are there in each stanza? Can you find the two words from which the most rhymes are made?

[Pg 219]


Can you read this selection thoroughly in four minutes? Some of you can read it in less time than that.

One of the most really democratic countries in the world today is Switzerland, the little republic among the Alps. It has a long and glorious history, for it is the earliest of modern republics. Its sections, instead of being called states, are called cantons. Switzerland originally belonged to Austria, in the early days when Austria was ruled not by an emperor but by a duke. The dukes of Austria were cruel tyrants, and this story tells how the Swiss mountaineers first began to free themselves from Austrian rule, in the battle of Morgarten in the year 1315.

As you read the story, notice:

1. The differences between Swiss and Austrians in numbers and equipment.

2. What gave the Swiss an advantage over the Austrians.

There are people who doubt the story of William Tell and Gessler, the Swiss archer and the Austrian tyrant; but no one can doubt the great and decisive victory won at Morgarten by the Swiss on the 15th of November, 1315. Three cantons beside the lake—Schwyz, Uri, and Unterwalden: the three Forest Cantons, as they were called, because of their great woods—were resolved to be free of Austrian rule. The Austrian Duke determined to crush them once and for all.

He regarded it as a very easy matter. He had vast numbers of horsemen and footmen, all splendidly armed and well trained in warfare; his opponents were a few peasants, who clung to their native hills, and loved freedom, and were ready to die for it. The Austrians looked upon the affair as a mere hunting excursion. They provided themselves with cartloads of ropes to lead back prisoners and the herds of cattle they expected to seize.

[Pg 220]

When the men of the forest heard that their enemies were marching upon them, they gathered to defend their rights as freemen. They mustered thirteen hundred fighting men, armed with the rudest of weapons, many having nothing in their hands save heavy clubs, spiked with iron. But before night fell those spiked clubs had been dipped in the best blood of Austria.

Twenty-four thousand of the Duke's finest troops, led by his brother Leopold, advanced against these shepherds and herdsmen, and the two armies met on the slopes of Morgarten. At this point a narrow pass ascends the hill-side; upon one side of the pass lies the mountain, upon the other the deep waters of the lake. At the head of the pass stood the small band of Swiss, calmly surveying the splendid host of steel-clad knights and men-at-arms which rode against them. The Austrians pushed up the slope confident of victory.

But as the latter rode up the pass an avalanche was loosed upon them—not an avalanche of snow, but one prepared by the Swiss themselves. Great stones, rocks, and trunks of trees had been poised on the edge of the heights above the pass. When the Austrians were seen below, these were thrust over the brink of the descent, and came rolling, leaping, thundering down the mountainside, and crashing in among the horsemen. Many were struck down, and the horses became so terrified that the whole body of the assailants was thrown into utter confusion.

Here was the opportunity of the Swiss, and they did not let it slip. Down the pass they swept upon the bewildered foe, and assailed them furiously with their swords, their halberds (a heavy shaft of wood fitted with axe and spear-point), and with their great iron-spiked clubs.

[Pg 221]

The Austrians tried to turn back and escape, but in vain. They were caught in the narrow pass as in a net. Many sprang from their horses and tried to get away on foot; but they slipped on the rocks, and the nimble mountaineers, whose nailed shoes gave them good foothold on their native slopes, and who were used to climbing over perilous heights, caught and destroyed them easily.

It was hardly a battle: it was a mere slaughter. Great numbers of the Austrians were slain on the spot; many were driven into the lake and drowned; the rest fled. Among the latter was Duke Leopold, who himself narrowly escaped with his life. One who saw him on his flight from this fatal field said that he looked "like death, and quite distracted". Well might he look distracted. He had left behind him a battleground drenched with the best blood of Austria; while of the brave Swiss only fourteen men had fallen.

The latter could scarce believe at first that they had won so mighty a victory; but when they saw the Austrians flying for their lives, and knew that the day was indeed their own, they fell on their knees upon this forever famous field of Morgarten, and thanked God for deliverance from the power of Austria; and to this day a service of thanksgiving is held every year on the anniversary of that great fight. Year by year, on the 15th of November, Swiss men and women visit that sacred spot where the liberty of their land was won in one of the decisive battles of the world, for after Morgarten the Forest Cantons never lost their freedom again.

From "A Peep at Switzerland",    
by John Finnemore.

[Pg 222]


This is another drill that asks you to make a careful choice of words. Do not write your name at the top of the paper this time, but beginning on the first line, write the figures 1 to 12 in the margin.

Below are ten sets of words. In each set, the first word is followed by four other words. Among these four words there is one that is exactly opposite in meaning to the first word in the group. Look at the first group. summer is the first word. Of the four words that follow it which one is the opposite in meaning to summer? winter, of course. Write this pair of opposites after figure 1 on your paper as follows:

1. summer      winter

After figure 2 write the second pair of opposites:

2. tight      loose

Complete the drill by selecting the opposites from each remaining group, and writing them after the proper figure on your paper. When finished, sign your name in the lower right-hand corner of your paper and wait quietly for the others.

1. summer (snow, winter, skating, January).
2. tight (small, larger, loose, bind).
3. long (straight, heavy, short, reach).
4. left (before, right, corner, wrong).
5. storm (calm, rain, sun, wind).
6. round (box, cake, seat, square).
7. beautiful (picture, flower, girl, ugly).
8. cold (winter, ice, warm, weather).
9. help (mother, book, lift, hinder).
10. rough (place, smooth, cotton, paper).
11. sweet (candy, sour, smile, lemon).
12. polite (courtesy, manners, rude, clumsy).

[Pg 223]


Here is a story of Mekolka, a little boy whose home is in the far northern part of Russia. Mekolka is a Samoyad; that is, a dweller on the northern coast of Russia or Siberia. The Tundra is a wide, almost level plain without any trees.

As you read, make a list of the things Mekolka can do with his hands.

What do you think a disha must be? What is a toor?

Mekolka does not know how to read print, but he can read in the book of "all out-doors". What is the lesson he knows best?

Mekolka's clothes have queer Russian names. See if you can tell, from the way each is described, what is a militza, what is a soveek, and what are pimmies?

How does Mekolka keep track of the months and days?

If you were a little Samoyad boy, it is more than likely that you would not go to school, unless you were one of a family that went off in a procession of sleighs at the beginning of every winter to some small town on the Petchora, or even farther on to Mezen or Archangel on the White Sea. Then there would be some small school for you to go to while the days were dark, till the approach of spring brought with it a new packing up and long sleigh drive back to the haunts of seal and walrus. But it is just as likely that there would be no school and no lessons. Mekolka, for instance, though he has picked up a little learning—a very little—from the Russian traders, and from friends who have traveled over the Tundra, knows very few of the things you know.

But he can use his fingers with great skill, and if he cannot write much, he can make a beautiful pattern with one knife on the horn handle of another one. In fact, he is quite skilful in carving the reindeer horns. He is always[Pg 224] on the lookout for a good piece of horn, and whenever he finds the shed antlers of a reindeer—for the deer cast off their antlers and grow new ones every spring—he picks them up and puts them to "season". There are regular piles of these antlers about. It is the custom for everyone to put the ones he finds on to one of these heaps, and to take the horn he wants to work from the more seasoned pieces at the bottom of the heap. Mekolka always chooses his piece with great care, cuts it down to the right shape, and as often as not decorates it with a metal pattern. For this he has to cut his design in a regular groove all over the horn. Having got his grooves deep and wide enough he puts some white-looking metal on the fire in a piece of wood scooped out like a cup. The metal soon melts, and Mekolka pours it into the groove and prevents it from running off by holding a piece of paper tight round the horn. The metal cools, and the edges are cut away. Then he polishes it with sand, after which he possesses a beautiful knife-handle.

Sometimes Mekolka goes in for ornaments without regard to use, and makes himself a ring. This time he makes the groove in a round piece of wood, which he has pared down to the right size, and runs in the same metal as before, with the piece of paper held tight, to support the metal on the under side. Then he cuts away the wood, and brings out knife and sand for the finishing; at the end he puts it on his finger with a look of proud content. Some of the patterns he makes on the knife-handles are really very beautiful, so that the Russian traders are glad to take them away in return for snuff and tobacco.

Mekolka can make a sleigh and mend it when required, throw the disha when he wants to catch a reindeer, and bring it round its horn at the first throw. He can harness a team[Pg 225] of five correctly, and drive them like the wind. At the gullies he is splendid; he puts the deer to a gallop when he sees the ravine ahead; then over they go, sleigh and all, Mekolka sitting there, proud and unmoved. Sometimes the ravine cannot be treated this way. Then Mekolka brings the team up to the edge and holds his toor—the long driving pole—across them to make them stand evenly. Then he dexterously removes the pole and shouts to the deer; at once they leap together across the cleft and climb up the steep snow wall on the other side by the grip of their outspread hoofs. They are not long at the top with the sleigh before Mekolka has slithered down and scrambled up the walls of the ravine, where they are less steep and where the ravine is not quite so narrow. He is quickly on to his sleigh again while the deer race forwards.

It is cold work racing through the chill air, which is frequently thick with an icy mist; but Mekolka is clad from head to foot in fur. His militza of reindeer-skin with fur inside often has a hood and mittens attached to it and covers him like a smock from head to knees. On his feet he wears pimmies, which reach up to the militza, and are generally made of sealskin with the fur cut into strips to form an attractive pattern. Over the militza he sometimes puts a soveek, the Samoyad overcoat. Here the fur is worn outside, and the garment is big and roomy.

After a long journey the reindeer must be unharnessed for feeding. They find their own food, of course, and Mekolka seizes the chance to go to sleep. He always goes to sleep in the same queer way; he sits down on the ground, pulls his arms out of the sleeves, and then lies flat on his back. The empty sleeves stretch out stiffly by his side, and look, of course, as though the arms are in them, though the hands have found a warmer spot inside on his chest.

[Pg 226]

The air on the Tundra, and, indeed, in all the Arctic region has a curious way of deceiving the traveler. It makes things look like something else. Take a day when the sunshine lights up the scene and the grey, lichen-covered mounds take wonderful colors in the distance from the blue sky and the haze. Though lakes of water appear to grow and fill the far-off hollows, Mekolka knows they are not lakes, but little snowdrifts. It is the mirage that plays these little tricks. So when he sees mighty ships sailing over the sea, he knows it is nothing more than blocks of ice, while what looks like a great headland on the coast is nothing but a little mound thirty or forty feet high. And if, when alone, he sees half a dozen other Samoyads come to the river-bank within a couple of hundred yards and then stop while one sits on a stone, he doesn't call out or walk toward them; he knows quite well that in a minute or two they will form themselves into a group of bernacle geese, or a family of snow buntings; in fact, he is quite prepared to hear one suddenly burst into song (for the snow bunting is the gayest warbler of the Arctic), and to find a cleft in the peat where there will be a nest, lined with dead grasses and the white feathers of the willow-grouse, and holding half a dozen eggs.

He knows every bird that flies overhead, and can name them, too, though his names are very different from ours. He knows that the snow bunting arrives about the middle of April, and he begins to watch for its appearance as soon as the days are getting long. He has no calendar of months and days to look at, but he makes notches on a stick—one for each day, with an extra cut at the seventh—and he is just as quick in glancing at his stick and telling you the date as an American boy would be with his printed calendar. He will watch for the purple sandpiper in May, and find[Pg 227] its eggs in June, though they are very hard to find for anyone with eyes less trained than Mekolka's. The nest is always built in some hollow among the Arctic willow or lichen, and the eggs are difficult enough to see, as is the bird itself when sitting on them—they all look so exactly like the ground. And the bird will let you come ever so close to her—in fact, almost tread on her—before she will leave her cherished eggs.

Mekolka can tell you about the behavior of the little stint when he came upon her nest one day. It had four precious eggs in it. When the old bird found she was really discovered, she jigged about like an acrobat, squeaked like a mouse, and did everything she could to take off Mekolka's attention from the nest. As that did not work, the little bird twittered and pretended to be lame, running about as though asking to be caught; but all she wanted was that no one should notice that deep hole in the ground half full of dried birch-leaves where her four cherished eggs were laid. The little stint had been into a creek in Scotland early in June, and wanted to get back there with four chicks before the end of July. She did not want to lose those eggs and go back all that long journey without any little ones. Not that she is very kind to them after they begin to grow, for on the very earliest opportunity she kicks them out of the nest to teach them self-reliance!

From "Finn and Samoyad".

Imagine that you have been for a long visit to Mekolka. Your teacher will call on some one to come to the front of the class to tell about each of the following experiences:

1. Helping Mekolka make a horn knife-handle.

2. A ride with Mekolka.

3. Being fooled by a mirage.

4. Some birds I saw with Mekolka.

[Pg 228]


You should all begin reading at the same moment. When you have finished, close your book and raise your hand. Your teacher will divide the class into three equal groups according to speed. She will ask you to write answers to the questions given at the end of the story and will appoint a committee of one pupil from each group to look the answers over and report which of the three groups has given the best answers.

Have you seen the brown bears at the Zoo? Do you remember how restlessly they walk up and down, or stand on their hind legs and wave their noses in the air? You will not wonder at it, when you read how independent a bear is at home, and how cozily he spends the long, dark winter.

It would seem that within or near the Arctic Circle Nature gives a big yawn at the end of her energetic summer, and settles down to her long winter sleep. Certainly some of her children prepare for sleep with plenty of care, especially Bruin, the big brown bear of Finland.

Even in the summer he goes sniffing round in the strong marshlands of the north or in the forests to the east. "That will make a good couch for me," he thinks, as he spies a cosy nook among some big boulders. He makes a note of the place, and goes on to look at other possible sites. He decides nothing then, but waits till the snow comes. Then the house-hunting must be undertaken seriously, and he tramps through the soft white carpet, leaving a well-marked "spoor" to tell the tale of his journeys. He is very fat after his summer feast of berries and roots, and his heavy body ploughs a deep furrow along the snow.

When once he has fixed on his boulders or tree trunks, he becomes very suspicious, and spends several days walking round and round his lodgings, on the watch for an enemy. He wants to be quite sure that no one can see him go to[Pg 229] rest, and by going all round in a ring he catches the wind whichever way it may be blowing. If he scents danger he is off, and so fleet of foot is he that no hunter can catch him. In short, Master Bruin is so much on the alert that it takes a very wary hunter to catch him before he goes to rest.

Bruin is a good weather-prophet, and can sniff the signs of a coming snow-storm better than most; so when at last he has chosen his couch he arranges to nestle down in it just as a heavy fall of snow is coming which will, he knows, cover up both his trail and himself, and so conceal all his traces from the curious. Sometimes he is a little out in his calculations, for his furrows are so deep that nothing short of a gale, with its heavy drifts of snow, will quite obliterate them.

The hunter Finn, however, has been watching, and has marked Bruin in his quest. He finds the "spoor" before it is lost, and travels along it till it enters some wood or hiding place. Then on his skis, or snowshoes, he starts across it and describes a big circle. If he cuts the spoor again farther on, he knows that Bruin has not yet halted, so another circle must be described. But if the ski-er comes back to the first line of spoor without having crossed it again, then "honey paws" must be within his circuit.

The hunter keeps his secret to himself and tells no one, because he will get the money for the skin, and also a reward from the Government for killing the animal.

There is no hurry, for the bear, when once settled in his snug quarters, will doze away quite comfortably through the winter. His ears and nose, however, seem to keep awake, even though his eyes are shut, and a scent of danger will cause him to move quickly and silently away to a new couch.

As spring approaches, the Finn tells a few of his chosen friends about the matter, and together they go off to hunt[Pg 230] "Flatnose", as they often call him, before he wakes up, thin and hungry, after his six months' fast. Warily they search, till they see a mass of snow covering a heap of rocks or a pile of fallen pine-trees. Then they whisper:

"The bear is sleeping under that heap of snow." They fire a few guns, the dogs bark, the men shout; altogether the bear receives a very effective morning call. He is very easily awakened, but he is in no haste to show himself, and waits while he thinks over matters, and prepares for a strategic and rapid retreat, for he has met danger before, and found his fleetness his greatest defence. In the meantime the hunters have fired a few shots into his retreat in the hope of stinging him into action, but they probably hit only his protective stones. Then they gather twigs and branches together and light a bonfire at his very door, or what they guess to be his door, trusting that the wind will carry the smoke to his nostrils. Some of their efforts succeed in their object; there is an upheaving of the snow; Flatnose pushes out his head. Then follow the shoulders and front paws, and soon the huge brown body rises as he sits upright on his haunches. He gives a terrific growl, which shows he is not to be trifled with; and, indeed, this is his most dangerous time, for he is very hungry after his long foodless sleep, and ready to attack anything—cow, reindeer, or man.

The dogs are much too frightened to go near him. They bark at a distance. One man fires a shot and hits. The bear shows his teeth and hisses as he makes a rush forwards. Another shot makes him look round, and the dogs grow bolder. A shot in the muzzle makes him quite furious, and he springs at one of the dogs. He catches one dog by the back and flings it howling over the snow. Then he springs at the other, and tears his ear or paw. Wild with[Pg 231] fury, he rushes toward his attackers, but between them he is soon laid low, and carried off in a sleigh. His skin alone will be worth many dollars, and the flesh more, so that with the Government grant, the men will have a comfortable little sum each as a result of their hunting.

It is not without danger, this bear-hunt, neither is it certain of success; for if the bear once dodges the early shots, he will manage to get through the trees and disappear in a way that is almost uncanny. So when a man has once been on a bear-hunt and brought his prey safely home, he becomes a hero in his village.

From "Finn and Samoyad".

Draw a diagram, showing:

1. A hollow tree.

2. A pile of rocks.

3. A fallen pine-tree.

4. The track made by the bear in seeking a winter bed.

5. The bear's stopping place.

6. The track made by the hunter in a circle.

You will have to indicate the two tracks by two different kinds of lines.

What is a spoor?


In Longfellow's "Hiawatha," the poet describes a bear asleep, as follows:

"He had stolen the Belt of Wampum,
From the Great Bear of the mountains,
From the terror of the nations,
As he lay asleep and cumbrous
On the summit of the mountains,
Like a rock with mosses on it,
Spotted brown and gray with mosses."

[Pg 232]


At New Year time Hok-a, the Chinese boy, and Gold-needle, his sister, and their cousins always have plenty of fun. Their grandmother once told them a story of why there was always so much feasting then. She said:

"They tell us that the people of long ago had a saying that on the last day of the twelfth month a great flood would drown everyone. When the people of that time heard this, they were very sad, and thought, 'Now we are going to die, let us take the food we have and eat, and the clothes we have and dress up gaily'. So they took rice, and fried rice-cakes, and prepared strained rice and basins of vegetables, in order to take leave of their ancestors. (The 'ancestors' mean the spirits of their ancestors, who are supposed to live in wooden tablets kept on a table placed against the wall of the chief room.) When they had worshipped the ancestors, all the family sat together round the table to eat their rice and put a little stove underneath because it was winter, and they needed a fire to warm themselves. On that night they shut the door very close and put a prop against it. They did not dare to go to sleep, but watched anxiously for the flood to come.

"At daybreak they opened the door, and discovered that there was no flood. That was New Year's Day. They immediately ran out to visit their friends and relatives, and found that none of them had been drowned either; so they all congratulated one another, and drank tea and wine. From that time there have always been feasting and visiting and congratulations at New Year."

Hok-a and Gold-needle have been looking forward to the holiday for a long time. All the people in the house have been busy for days. The dust and dirt of the year has been swept from the house into the street. The men[Pg 233] have been hurrying about collecting any money that was owing to them, for no bills must be left over till New Year. Mother and aunts have been sitting by the door to catch the light to darn, and mend, and make, for everyone must have something fine to wear on New Year's day. Such a cooking goes on the day before! and such a frying of rice flour cakes you never saw. Pigs and ducks and chickens and even poor little fish have a bad time of it just then.

The great day arrives, and Hok-a and Gold-needle dress themselves in their new clothes. Hok-a has a blue coat, with a yellow silk waistcoat on the top of it, green silk anklets, and a green cap; while his little sister is gay in a pink coat and blue trousers trimmed with black, and wears some silver pins and cloth flowers in her shining black hair.

By twelve o'clock all is ready. The men and boys, in long blue or green gowns, are gathered in the hall, and prostrate themselves three times begging the idols and the spirits of their ancestors to eat the food prepared for them. A basin of rice and another of vegetables, with a piece of meat, is carried to the bed-room for the Mother Bed Spirit to eat, as, if they don't feed her, she will revenge herself by tripping up the children. The Kitchen God, too, must have his share, and the fireplace is gaily decorated with flowers.

When they have finished worshipping, a lot of silver and paper money is burnt, that the spirits may buy good things in the other world, and have a nice time. Then all the family gather round for the feast of the year. Usually the men eat alone and the women afterwards, but on this day everyone has a place. Such fun they have, roasting cockles and parching beans! Everyone must give a stir to the bean-pan. A little stove is carried to the table, and wine is warmed over it, for all to have a taste. A great supply of celery has been laid in, and the stalks must be[Pg 234] boiled and swallowed whole, to give long life. When the feast is finished, the grandfather hands a piece of money to each, so that they may have money the year through. Then a basin of rice and a bit of meat is given to the dog, a treat he gets only once a year. It is time to light up now. A bit of sugar-cane is stuck behind each door, and in each room food is placed for the spirits. There is so much noise and merriment that, for a wonder, the rats don't dare to peep out; so they say that "the rats are marrying and giving in marriage". Twelve bamboo lamps are lighted in the hall, and afterwards carried out to burn. Everybody gathers round to watch which goes out first, as each lantern stands for a month, and the first that burns black means a month of rain. If it is the first month the children are sad, for that is holiday-time. And it usually is the first, as it is carried out before the others.

Our little friend Hok-a has been saving up for weeks, so as to buy plenty of squibs and fireworks to let off on this day, just as American boys used to do for the 4th of July. His father has bought hundreds of them, too, and so has everyone else in the place; the cracking of them is heard everywhere.

A great bonfire is kindled, and the children jump over it, singing:

"Jump busily, jump away—the fire burns bright!"

It is late before anyone gets to bed, for they think that the longer the children sit up, the longer the old people will live. Some dutiful boys and girls sit up all night long!

Next morning there is a great deal of visiting, and, I am sorry to say, a great deal of gambling. Nobody works, and everybody is supposed to be in good humor.

From "A Peep at China",    
by Lena E. Johnston.

[Pg 235]


This drill is given to see how well you can follow printed directions, and how well you understand the way the words are grouped at the bottom of the page. There is something for you to write in each of the following paragraphs, and your ability to read and understand will be judged by how exactly you follow these directions.

1. Arrange your paper with your name on the first line to the right, and your grade below it on the second line.

2. Do not write anything on the third line, but on the next six lines in the margin, write the figures from 1 to 10.

3. The first group of words at the bottom of the page is a list of farm-products; you can easily name other words that might be added to this list, such as:

beans  rye  oats

Write two of these new words after figure 1 on your paper.

4. There are nine other lists of words, and each list names not farm-products, but some other things. After figure 2 on your paper, write two other words that could properly be added to the second group of words.

5. In the same way, write two more words that could rightly belong to each of the other eight groups of words. When you finish wait quietly for the others.

1. corn, potatoes, wheat, peas.
2. chisel, plane, file, axe.
3. creek, ocean, gulf, sea.
4. fireman, librarian, teacher, physician.
5. overcoat, fur cap, overshoes, muffler.
6. meat, horns, tallow, hair.
7. pencil, pen, blotter, stamps.
8. cup, saucer, plate, bowl.
9. door, window, stairs, chimney.
10. tennis, croquet, hockey, baseball.

[Pg 236]


There are two things you can do with every good and useful thing—use it and abuse it. Here you are going to read about the abuse of a very useful thing, indeed—a match. When things are a common, everyday part of the household, people are apt to treat them carelessly; and carelessness always means trouble. As you read, think whether anything in this article hits you.

This is a good selection to outline. Perhaps your teacher will have some of the best outlines put on the blackboard.

The match is one of the most valuable and one of the most dangerous articles made by man. It has been in use for less than one hundred years, but think of trying to get along without it!

Suppose, for example, that you were camping far from any houses, and discovered, when the time came to cook dinner, that you had lost your matches. What would you do? Would you rub sticks together like the Indian or make a "bow-drill" like the Eskimo? These were the methods used by mankind for thousands and thousands of years, but they mean desperately hard work, as you would soon realize. You would be fortunate if you could find a bit of flint from which to strike sparks with steel as your great-grandfather probably did. But even in that case you would appreciate matches as never before.

It was not until the year 1827 that an English druggist named John Walker made the first practical friction-matches, known as "Congreves". A folded piece of glass-paper went with every box, and in order to light the match one had to draw it in one hand quickly through the folds of the paper held tightly pressed together with the other. Another kind of match, the "Promethean", appeared a[Pg 237] little later. It had at one end a thin glass globule, which it was necessary to press in producing fire.

Thus people went on experimenting, for everyone was interested and there was great demand. Gradually methods of making that were better and cheaper were discovered, until, to-day, matches are found in every home.

It is said that more matches are sold in the United States than in all the rest of the world. More than seven hundred million matches are used in the United States each day. You can hardly imagine such a figure. If a factory made just one match for every minute, night and day, it would take nearly fourteen hundred years for it to produce as many matches as this country uses in a single day. Or—to put it in another way—nearly five hundred thousand flames are struck every minute on an average. There is not one of these flames that would not develop into a destructive fire if it had a chance. Consequently, every match must be regarded, and must be treated, as a possible source of great damage.

Matches, to-day, are of two general classes: Those which may be struck upon any rough surface, and the so-called "safety matches", made to be struck only upon the box. But there are good matches and bad matches in both classes. In other words, while the safety match, as a rule, is safer than the kind first mentioned, a poorly made strike-on-the-box match may be more dangerous than a well-made strike-anywhere match. Therefore, we ought to know something about what a match is, as well as how to use it.

Here is a match. What could appear more harmless? A tiny stick of wood, shorter than your finger, coated at one end with some substance that forms a little bulb, or head—who would believe that it can be either a blessing or a deadly peril, according to the way in which it is used?

[Pg 238]

The secret of fire-production lies in the head of the match. This contains certain chemicals which take fire easily when heated, and it also contains particles of ground flint in order to create heat by friction when the match is struck. If two objects are rubbed quickly together, the resulting friction brings heat, and all the more easily and quickly if one of the objects be rough. If you sandpaper a board, rubbing it hard, you will soon find both paper and board becoming warm. Thus friction from striking a match produces sufficient heat to cause the head to burst into flame.

Now, it must be remembered that even careful persons may meet with accidents through the use of bad matches. Sometimes, when struck, the blazing head will fly off, or the stick will break and fall; sometimes, too, the match will continue to glow after the flame has been blown out. These are signs that the match is poorly made; probably it is of some very cheap brand, for such things never happen with good matches. Carefulness, therefore, must begin at the time of buying. One should always notice the brand and always order by brand. Whenever a brand is found to have any of these faults it should be avoided in future, no matter how low the price may be.

The best of the strike-anywhere matches are given a special treatment to keep the head from flying off when struck, and also to guard it from being set on fire accidentally. Great care is also taken in the preparation of the wood to safeguard against breaking. But as a class, the safety matches are less dangerous.

Matches of all kinds are carefully tested in the great Underwriters' Laboratories, which The National Board of Fire Underwriters maintains in Chicago, and those that are able to pass the test are labeled by the Laboratories. It is always a protection to find one of these labels on a[Pg 239] box. The Laboratories have no interest in the sale of matches, and any manufacturer who will make goods of the right grade can secure the label.

Let us suppose that your house is provided with good matches, those having solid heads and tough sticks. There will be no danger if you are always careful when using them. But are you? Here are some questions for you to answer.

Do you ever throw away a match which is burning or even glowing? Never do this again. It has caused hundreds of deaths and has burned thousands of homes.

How do you strike a match—away from you or toward you? Probably you have never thought about this, but think of it hereafter, and form the habit of always striking away from you. Thus, if the match breaks or its head flies off, it will not be likely to set fire to your clothing. In lighting matches upon a box, first close the box; otherwise the flame may set fire to the whole box. If the box is set in a box-holder, such as those used by smokers, wherein the upper part of the box is open, place the box so that the heads are not exposed. In striking a match upon such a holder, always strike downward away from the open end.

If matches are spilled, do you stop at once and pick up every one? If you leave them strewn about for even a little while, you may forget them until after mischief has been done. A match on the floor is always a dangerous thing. It may be stepped on and ignited, or it may be found by a little child, or it may be carried into the wall or under the floor by a rat or mouse. It is not probable that mice often start fires by gnawing match-heads, but they do like to use them in building nests in warm, comfortable places, close to chimneys or furnace pipes. Dangerous fires may come from this cause or from matches rubbed against beams while being carried to the nest.

[Pg 240]

Where do you keep your matches? Are they out of reach of little children, as they always should be? Are they kept away from the stove, or the stovepipe, or any other place where they may become overheated? Are they loose in a drawer or on a shelf, or are they in a covered box or dish of metal or earthenware? Sometimes uncovered matches are ignited by the sun's rays shining through a lens-forming bubble in a window-pane.

Do you carry matches on your person? A child should never be allowed to do this. He may be careful, but some careless child may ask him for a match. Always be on the safe side. A grown person should never permit himself to carry loose matches in his pocket. The State Fire Marshal of Iowa says:

Some men, especially smokers, are in the habit of carrying matches around with them. It is the easiest thing in the world for matches carried around loose in a man's pocket to drop out. Suppose the man has work to do about a barn. A match drops out on the barn floor and a horse steps on it. It is a parlor-match and ignites, setting fire to hay and other inflammable material found in barns. Then the barn burns and the cause of fire is reported something like this:

"Unknown. Nobody had been in the barn for some time. Everything safe when the barn was closed up."

Six hundred and ninety-four barn fires took place in Iowa in 1914. Hundreds of these were reported as of unknown origin, but it is safe to say that in a great number of cases, if the cause could have been traced, it would have been found to be a match that had dropped out of a smoker's pocket.

Until we find some better device for producing fire, matches will continue to be used in immense numbers, and[Pg 241] they will always be a source of danger in the hands of careless people, and even careful people may be imperiled by the actions of careless people about them. There are no safety-rules more important than those applying to the use of matches, and habits of carefulness should be formed by every person. Some one has said:

Matches do not think with their heads. When you use them, your head has to do all the thinking. Do the thinking! Put them out!

Safety Rules for Buying Matches

1. Purchase by brand, and always avoid brands which break, lose their heads, or glow after being blown out.

2. Look for the label of the Underwriters' Laboratories.

3. Give the preference to strike-on-the-box, or safety matches, but, in case of buying the strike-anywhere match, get one that has a protected tip.

Safety Rules for Using Matches

1. Keep them in covered boxes or dishes, away from the heat of stoves and stovepipes and out of the reach of rats and mice.

2. Strike matches away from you. If you are striking on a box, first close the box. Strike downward on the box.

National Board of Fire Underwriters.


1. Make three more rules for using matches.

2. What is the meaning of the following words?

  friction experimenting
  Underwriters safety-matches
  inflammable peril
  ignite avoid
  accidentally device

3. Tell three ways in which matches may be dangerous.

[Pg 242]


Noblesse oblige is a French expression (pronounced nōblĕss´ ōbleejh´) which means, "High birth or position makes one responsible for the good of those lower than he in position". The following story tells of a British officer during the World War who did not forget this motto. The story was told by the writer of a book narrating experiences at the front. As you read, think how you would have felt if you had been one of the young colonel's men.

A great love and sympathy always seem to exist between the British officer and his men. One of the reasons is the justice and unselfishness of the officer. For instance, a British officer among the walking wounded never goes ahead of his men to have his wounds dressed.

Outside of one dressing station sat a young colonel with a bad wound. One of the secretaries noticed him and said, "You had better get into the dressing station at once."

"It is not my turn. I will not go out of turn."

Some four hours later, the secretary, passing out food and drink, again noticed the colonel.

"Here! Why haven't you had your wounds dressed?" he exclaimed.

"I am waiting for my turn."

"But it was your turn a long time ago."

"Are you sure?"

"Of course I am. Come, let me help you."

Into the dressing room he staggered. He had no idea that he had done a heroic thing.

—"Youth's Companion."

1. Could the young colonel have had his wounds dressed earlier if he had wished?

2. Why did he not do so?

[Pg 243]


Here is another Arabian fairy tale. It is much longer than the story of the queer man who was made Caliph for a day and is also very different from that tale. But it is a fine story of adventure filled with surprises and with all the changes of fortune that fairy stories so often have. Of course, all sixth grade boys and girls know that the Indian who is spoken of is an East Indian of Asia and not a North American Indian.

On the Nevrouz, that is to say, the new day, which is the first of the year, and the beginning of the spring, an ancient and solemn feast was observed through all Persia. At the court, this feast was always attended with the greatest splendor. All artists, natives or strangers, were allowed at that time to produce their several inventions before the king; who never failed to confer liberal rewards on those whose abilities deserved them.

Near the close of one of these feasts, an Indian presented himself before the king with an artificial horse of the most perfect workmanship, richly accoutred. "I flatter myself, sir," said the Indian, addressing himself to the king, "that your majesty hath never seen anything so wonderful as this horse, either now, or at any former Nevrouz." The king surveyed the horse with attention. "I see nothing," said he, "but a fine piece of sculpture, which any able artist may equal."

"Sir," replied the Indian, "it is not his form, but his use that I commend so highly. On his back I can convey myself through the air to the most distant part of the earth, in a very short time. I can even instruct any other person to ride in the same manner. Such is the curiosity I have the honor to present to your majesty's notice."

The king was highly pleased with this account of the[Pg 244] Indian's horse, and desired to see a proof of his abilities. "There is," said the king, pointing to a mountain about three leagues off, "on the summit of that mountain, a palm-tree of a particular quality, which I should know from all others; go, fetch me a branch of it."

The Indian mounted his horse, and turning a peg which was in the neck, away he flew with him, and they were presently out of sight. Within a quarter of an hour he was seen returning with a palm branch in his hand, which, as soon as he had descended and alighted, he laid at the king's feet.

The king was greatly pleased with this extraordinary performance, and resolved to purchase the horse if he could prevail with the owner to part with him. Accordingly, he asked the Indian if he was to be sold. "Sir," replied the Indian, "I should not have produced my horse to your majesty if it had been absolutely impossible for me to sell him. Yet the artist from whom I received him, laid me under the most solemn injunction that I should never part with him for money; nor on any terms but such as I might request your pardon before I presume to name them."

The king impatiently answered that he forgave his demand, even if it was to reach his crown; but he reserved to himself the power of refusal, if he thought that demand too exorbitant. The Indian then replied that he was ready to resign his horse if his majesty would condescend to bestow on him the princess, his daughter, in marriage.

When the courtiers heard this extravagant request, they all burst into loud laughter; but the prince Firouz Shah, the only son of the king, was enraged, and the more so when he saw the king pensive, debating with himself what answer to return. Going up to his father, he said, "I entreat your majesty will pardon the liberty I am about to take, but is it possible you can hesitate a moment what answer to make[Pg 245] to this insolent fellow? Can you bear to think of degrading our house by an alliance with a scandalous juggler?"

The king approved of his son's spirit, but argued that if he refused to comply with the Indian's proposal, perhaps some other sovereign might be less nice, and by that means become possessed of the greatest curiosity in the world. He ended his reply by desiring his son to examine the horse attentively, and give his opinion of him.

Respect for his father made him receive these orders in silence. He approached the horse, and the Indian drew near to instruct the prince in the method of managing him; but the haughty young man was in too great a fury to listen to him. He spurned the kneeling Indian contemptuously, and leaping into the saddle, he turned the peg, and the horse flew away with him.

The Indian was exceedingly alarmed when he saw the prince depart before he had learned how to manage the horse. He threw himself once more at the king's feet, and besought his majesty not to blame him for any accident which might befall the prince, since his own impetuosity had exposed him to danger. The king had no apprehension for his son, till he saw the Indian so terrified. He then felt all the horrors of the prince's situation. He cursed the Indian and his fatal horse, and ordered his officers to seize and conduct him to prison. "If my son does not return safe," said he, "in a short time, thy paltry life, at least, shall be sacrificed to my vengeance."

In the meantime, Firouz Shah was carried through the air with inconceivable swiftness, till at length he could scarcely discern the earth at all. He then wished to return, which he expected to do by turning the peg the contrary way; but when he found the horse continued to rise from the earth, and proceed forward at the same time with greater swiftness,[Pg 246] he was alarmed and began to regret his pride and anger. He turned the peg about every way to no purpose; in this situation he retained, notwithstanding, a perfect presence of mind, and, on examining the horse closely, he at last perceived another peg behind the ear. On turning that peg he presently found that he descended in the same oblique manner that he had mounted, but not so swiftly.

As he drew near the earth, he lost the light by degrees, till he came into total darkness. He did not attempt, therefore, to guide the horse, but waited patiently, though not without apprehension, till he should alight.

It was midnight when the horse stopped, and Firouz dismounted, faint with hunger and fatigue. He groped about and found he was on the roof of some large building. At length he came to some steps, which he descended, and rambled about in the dark for some time; at last, on opening a door, he found a light, and saw a number of black guards asleep on pallets, with their sabres lying by them. This convinced him that he was in a palace, and that this chamber was the guard room of some princess. As he knew if any of the guards should awake he would be in great danger, he resolved to enter the next apartment, and throw himself on the mercy of the lady who inhabited it.

He found there asleep on a sofa a young lady, whose exquisite beauty captivated his heart the moment he beheld her. Her women were sleeping in little beds around her. The prince gazed on her for a long time, forgetful of his situation; and, at length he knelt down, and gently pulling her hand toward him, he kissed it.

The motion awakened the princess, who was surprised to find a stranger at her bedside. She would have cried out, but Firouz besought her patience. He told her that he was the son of a king, and that a very extraordinary accident,[Pg 247] which he would relate, had brought him to the necessity of claiming her protection.

The lady was the daughter of the king of Bengal. Many of her attendants were by this time awakened. She told Firouz, therefore, that she should be glad to hear the particulars of his adventure in the morning, but for the present besought him to withdraw. At the same time she ordered her attendants to conduct him to a chamber, and supply him with such refreshments as he wanted.

The prince attended her the next day and related to her all the particulars of the arrival of the Indian with his horse, of his insolent demand, and its consequences. He concluded his account of his journey by observing that however much he had been enraged at the Indian, he now began to consider him his benefactor; "since," added he, "he has been the cause of my being known to a lady whose chains I shall be proud to wear as long as I live."

The princess received this compliment in such a manner as showed it was very acceptable to her. She invited the prince to repose a few days in her palace to recover himself from the fatigue and alarm he had undergone. He accepted this invitation; and being much together, they fell more and more in love with each other. And, at last, when filial duty obliged Firouz to think of returning to Persia, the fond princess, fearing she should see him no more, dropped a hint that she should not be afraid to trust herself with him on the enchanted horse; and the prince, equally enamored, failed not to confirm her in this rash adventure.

Everything being agreed on between the lovers, they repaired, one morning at daybreak, to the roof where the horse still remained; and Firouz assisted the princess to mount him. He then placed himself before her, and turning the peg, they were out of sight before any of the[Pg 248] attendants in the palace were stirring; and in two hours the prince discovered the capital of Persia.

He would not alight at the king's palace, but directed his course to a small cottage in a wood, a little distance from town, that he might inform his father who the lady was, and secure her a reception suitable to her dignity. When they alighted, he led her into a handsome apartment, and ordered the keeper of the house to show her all imaginable respect. Then he hastened to the palace, where the king received him with unspeakable joy. Firouz related to his father all that had befallen him, and the king was so delighted with his son's safe arrival, that he readily complied with his desire that the wedding ceremonies between him and the princess should be immediately celebrated.

While the necessary preparations were being made, the king ordered the Indian, who was to have been executed the next day, to be released from prison, and brought before him. "My son's safe arrival," said the king to him, "hath preserved thy life. Take thy horse, and begone from my dominions; where, if thou art ever seen again, I will not fail to put thee to death." The Indian being then freed from his chains, and set at liberty, withdrew in silence.

But he meditated a severe revenge. He had learned from those who fetched him out of prison, that Firouz had brought home with him a beautiful princess, to whom he was about to be married. He was told also that she was at the house in the wood, where he was directed to go and take away his horse. While Firouz was preparing a great retinue to conduct the princess in state to the palace, the Indian hastened to the house in the wood, and told the keeper he was sent by the prince to conduct her, on the horse, to the capital; and that the whole court and people were waiting with impatience for the wonderful sight.

[Pg 249]

The Prince of Persia Carries Away the Princess of Bengal

The Prince of Persia Carries Away the Princess of Bengal

[Pg 250]

The keeper knew that the Indian had been imprisoned on account of the prince's absence; and, seeing him now at liberty, he believed all he said. He presented the traitor to the princess, who, not doubting but he came from Firouz, readily agreed to go with him. The Indian, overjoyed at his success, mounted his horse, took the princess behind him, and turning the peg, the horse immediately ascended into the air. The king and his whole court were on the road to the house in the wood, to conduct the princess of Bengal from thence to the palace; when the Indian, to brave them, and revenge the severe treatment he had received, passed several times over their heads with his prize. The rage and grief of the king were extreme. He loaded the villain with a thousand execrations, in which he was joined by the courtiers and people. The Indian, having expressed his contempt for them, and his triumph over the king and his son, was presently out of sight.

But who can describe the horror and despair of Firouz, when he saw his beloved princess torn from him by a vile Indian he so thoroughly detested, and found himself unable to afford her the least assistance. At first he abandoned himself to despair; but, recollecting that such a conduct would neither recover the princess nor punish the captor, he restrained his affliction, and began to consider how he could best effect these desirable purposes. He put on the habit of a dervish, and left the palace the same evening, uncertain which way to go, but determined not to return till he had found his princess again.

In the meantime, the Indian having pursued his journey for several hours, alighted in a wood, near the capital of Cashmere. As he was hungry himself, and doubted not but the princess was so too, he left her by the side of a brook and flew away on the horse to the city to procure provisions.[Pg 251] The princess made the best use in her power of his absence; and though faint for want of food, she traveled on, and had got a considerable distance from the place where he left her, when she had the mortification to see him return and alight close by her; for the Indian had wished to be set down wherever the princess was, and the horse always obeyed the desire of the rider.

The Indian produced some wine and provisions, and ate heartily, urging her to follow his example, which she thought it best to do. When they had done, he drew near and began to pay his addresses to the princess, which she repulsed with indignation. Her outcries drew a company of horsemen to her assistance.

They proved to be the sultan of Cashmere and his attendants, returning from a day's hunting. When the sultan asked of the Indian why he annoyed the lady, he boldly answered that she was his wife; but the princess, though she knew not the quality of the sultan, besought his protection, and declared that by the basest deceit only she had been thrown into the power of such a reptile.

The sultan of Cashmere was very chivalrous. The disorder and distress of the princess added to her beauty and interested the monarch. Judging that, whether the Indian was the husband of the lady or not, he would be best out of the way, he pretended to be much enraged against him, and ordered his head to be stuck off immediately. He then conducted the princess to his palace, and directed his attendants to bring the horse after them, though he knew nothing of the use of it.

The princess of Bengal rejoiced at her deliverance. She entertained hopes that the sultan of Cashmere would generously restore her to the prince of Persia; but she was much deceived; for as soon as the sultan learned that she[Pg 252] was daughter to the king of Bengal, he determined to marry her, and that no untoward circumstances might happen to prevent it, he gave orders for the necessary preparations to be completed by the next day.

In the morning the princess was awakened early by the sounding of trumpets, the beating of drums, and other noisy tokens of public joy, which echoed through the palace and city. On her asking the cause of this rejoicing, she was told it was to celebrate her marriage with their sultan, which was to take place presently.

The princess' attachment to Firouz would have made any other man disagreeable to her. But this conduct of the sultan of Cashmere in proclaiming their nuptials, without even having asked her consent, at once enraged and terrified her. She was entirely in his power; and the disrespect he had paid her convinced her that she had everything to fear from his violence, if she refused to comply with his wishes.

Thus critically situated, she had recourse to art. She arose and dressed herself fancifully, and in her whole behavior appeared to her women to be unsettled in her intellect. The sultan was soon told of his misfortune, and on his approach she put on the appearance of frenzy, and endeavored to fly at him; and this fury she ever after affected whenever he came in her sight. The sultan was much disturbed at this unfortunate event, as he thought it, and offered large rewards to any physician who could cure her, but the princess would not suffer any one to come near her, so that all hope of her recovery began to be despaired of.

During this interval, Firouz, disguised as a dervish, had traveled through many provinces, full of grief, and uncertain which way to direct his course in search of his beloved princess. At last, passing through a town in India, he[Pg 253] heard an account that a princess of Bengal had run mad on the day of the celebration of her nuptials with the sultan of Cashmere. Slender as was the hope that such a report gave him, he resolved to travel to the capital of that kingdom; where, when he arrived, he had the happiness to find he had not journeyed in vain. He learned all the particulars of her having been delivered from the Indian by their sultan, and that the very next day she was seized with madness.

Firouz saw at once the reason of the princess' conduct, and was delighted with this tender proof of her love and constancy to him. All the difficulty which remained was to obtain an opportunity of speaking to her. To gain this, he put on the clothes of a physician, and, presenting himself to the sultan, undertook to cure the princess.

His services being accepted, he desired first to see her, without being seen by her. For this purpose he was conveyed into a closet, whence he saw her unobserved. She was carelessly singing a song, in which she deplored the unhappy fate which had forever deprived her of the object she loved so tenderly. When he quitted the closet, he told the sultan she was not incurable, but that it was necessary for him to speak with her alone; and that notwithstanding her violent fits at the sight of physicians, he knew how to make her attend to him.

As the princess had been long thought incurable, the sultan made no difficulty of complying with the supposed physician's request. As soon as he entered her apartment, she began to rave at him in her usual furious manner, on which he went up close to her, and said, in a low voice, "I am the prince of Persia."

The princess ceased to rave, and the attendants withdrew, rejoiced at this proof of the physician's abilities. After mutual congratulations, Firouz acquainted her with[Pg 254] the plan he had formed for her deliverance. He then returned to the sultan, who demanded eagerly what hopes he now entertained. The pretended physician shook his head, and said, "All depends upon a mere chance; the princess, a few hours before she was taken ill, had touched something that was enchanted. Unless I can obtain that something, whatever it may be, I cannot cure her."

The sultan of Cashmere presently recollected the horse, which was still preserved in his treasury. He showed it to the imaginary physician, who, on seeing it, very gravely said, "I congratulate your majesty on the certainty of my success. Let this horse be brought out into the great square before the palace, and let the princess attend; I will promise that in a few minutes she shall be perfectly cured."

Accordingly, the following morning the horse was placed in the middle of the square, and the supposed physician drew a large circle, and placed around it chafing dishes, with a little fire in each. The sultan, full of expectation, with all his nobles and ministers of state, attended. The princess was brought out veiled, conducted within the circle, and the physician placed her on the enchanted horse. He then went round to each chafing dish, and threw in a certain drug, which presently raised such a cloud of smoke that neither the physician, the princess, nor the horse could be seen through it. At that instant the prince of Persia mounted the horse; and, turning the peg, while the horse ascended into the air, he distinctly pronounced these words: "Sultan of Cashmere, when thou wouldst marry princesses who implore thy protection, learn first to obtain their consent."

The same day the prince of Persia and his beloved princess arrived safely at his father's court, when their nuptials were immediately celebrated with the greatest splendor.

Arabian Nights.

[Pg 255]


Arrange your paper with your name on the first line, at the right, and your grade below it on the second line. Put nothing on the next line. Here are ten problems to be answered, not with figures, but with the word, yes or no. No other answer will be satisfactory. Put the answer to the first problem on the fourth line, and in the margin of your paper mark it number 1. Use a new line for each new answer guess at it, and pass on to the next problem.

1. One day last June, I picked sixty-five pounds of cherries. My mother wanted about thirty pounds. Did I have enough to sell Mrs. Clark thirty pounds also?

2. Sugar-cane grows in a moist tropical region. If you were a farmer in Kansas, would you plant most of your farm with sugar-cane?

3. All the boys and girls of the Sixth Grade belong to the School Library. Marie is in the Sixth Grade. Is she a member of the Library?

4. John is older than Robert. I am younger than John. Do you know that Robert is older than I am?

5. I have been saving since last vacation in order to buy a bicycle. It will cost me $19.50, but I have already saved more than half of this. If my father gives me ten dollars for my birthday shall I be able to get the bicycle?

6. All the boys in the Sixth Grade have enlisted in the United States School Garden Army. Robert is a member of the United States School Garden Army. Does that prove that he is a member of the Sixth Grade?

7. Hawaii has a warm moist climate. From what you read in the second problem, would you expect to find sugar-cane growing there?

8. John is three years younger than Robert. I am one year older than John. Is Robert the oldest?

[Pg 256]


Perhaps you are a Boy Scout already, though not a very big one. Perhaps you intend to be one some day. In this description of the best kind of Scout, find reasons why you would like to be one.

A Scout enjoys a hike through the woods more than he does a walk in the city streets. He can tell north or south or east or west by the "signs." He can tie a knot that will hold; he can climb a tree which seems impossible to others; he can swim a river; he can pitch a tent; he can mend a tear in his trousers; he can tell you which fruits and seeds are poisonous and which are not; he can sight nut-bearing trees from a distance. If he lives near the ocean or a lake he can reef a sail or take his trick at the wheel, and, if near any body of water at all he can pull an oar or use paddles and sculls; in the woods he knows the names of birds and animals; in the water he tells you the different varieties of fish.

A Scout walks through the woods with silent tread. No dry twigs snap under his feet, and no loose stones turn over and throw him off his balance. His eyes are keen and he sees many things that others do not see. He sees tracks and signs which reveal to him the nature and habits of the creatures that made them. He knows how to stalk birds and animals and how to study them in their natural haunts. He sees much, but is little seen.

A Scout, like an old frontiersman, does not shout his wisdom from the housetops. He possesses the quiet power that comes from knowledge. He speaks softly and answers questions modestly. He knows a braggart but he does not challenge him, allowing the boaster to expose his ignorance by his own loose-wagging tongue.

[Pg 257]

A Scout can kindle a fire in the forest on the wettest day, and he seldom uses more than one match. When no matches can be had, he can still have a fire, for he knows the secret of the rubbing sticks used by the Indians, and he knows how to start a blaze with only his knife blade and a piece of flint. He knows, also, the danger of forest fires; so he kindles a blaze that will not spread. The fire once started, what a meal he can prepare out there in the open! Just watch him and compare his appetite with that of a boy who lounges at a lunch counter in a crowded city. He knows the unwritten rules of the campfire, and he contributes his share to the pleasures of the council. He also knows when to sit silent before the ruddy embers and give his mind free play.

A Scout holds his honor to be his most precious possession, and he would rather die than have it stained. He knows what is his duty, and all obligations imposed by duty he fulfills of his own free will. His sense of honor is his only task-master, and his honor he guards as jealously as did the knights of old. In this manner a Scout wins the confidence and respect of all people.

A Scout practices self-control, for he knows that men who master problems in the world must first master themselves. He keeps a close guard on his tongue, for he knows that loud speech is often a cloak to ignorance, that swearing is a sign of weakness, and that untruthfulness shatters the confidence of others. He keeps a close guard on his appetite and eats moderately of food which will make him strong; he never uses alcoholic liquors because he does not wish to poison his body; he desires a clear, active brain, so he avoids tobacco.

A Scout never flinches in the face of danger; for he knows that at such a time every faculty must be alert to preserve[Pg 258] his safety and that of others. He knows what to do in case of fire, or panic, or shipwreck; he trains his mind to direct and his body to act. In all emergencies he sets an example of resourcefulness, coolness and courage, and considers the safety of others before that of himself. He is especially considerate of the helpless and weak.

A Scout can make himself known to a brother Scout wherever he may be by a method which only Scouts can know. He has brothers in every city in the land and in every country in the world. Wherever he goes he can give his signs and be assured of a friendly welcome. He can talk with a brother Scout without making a sound or he can make known his message by imitating the click of a telegraph key.

From "The Boy Scouts' Year Book",    
Courtesy of D. Appleton and Company.


1. Why would you like a Boy Scout as a companion if you were lost in the woods?

2. What is meant by, "His sense of honor is his only task-master"?

3. Why would you trust a Boy Scout who lived up to the teachings of the Boy Scouts?


Some of the pledges which the knights of King Arthur's Round Table had to take were not unlike the code of the Boy Scouts. Find the points of likeness in these lines from Tennyson's version of the vows:

"To honor his own word as if his God's;
To ride abroad redressing human wrongs;
To speak no slander, no, nor listen to it."

[Pg 259]


Here is a splendid story that makes the discovery of fire real to us because it shows us how a man might have felt.

This is a story to read and enjoy. No questions will be asked about it, but you may ask your teacher to explain anything you do not understand. Perhaps you would like to tell the story to your parents or friends or to some class below yours in the school.

Before the years were counted or the circuit of the seasons reckoned, man lived where it was always summer, and summer heat ruled the Northland, now ruled by winter cold. As the scepter of the Frost King reached farther and farther south, men slowly and reluctantly retreated from the old homes. But some lingered through the fireless winters for the love of the familiar places and the beauty of the northern spring and summer.

Among those who lingered was Ang, the mighty hunter. His home was in a cave at the edge of the great forest. It faced the south so that it could catch all the scant rays of the winter's sun. The mouth of the cave was partly closed by a screen of fir boughs, while a bark slab, torn from a big tree, formed a rude door. Inside the cave were bunks piled high with dry moss and leaves, with the skins of animals which Ang had slain thrown over them.

It was not yet midwinter, but it was cold, bitter cold. As Ang sat in front of his cave, chipping knife blades and arrow points from flint, he moved from time to time to keep in the feeble light of the sun, but it seemed to have little warmth, and he shivered and grumbled to himself: "Every year the cold grows stronger. The old men tell of a time when it came late and went soon, but that must have been long ago. Ugh! but it is cold! It gets under my bearskin; it nips my ears and numbs my hands. I wish[Pg 260] I had taken the long journey to the Southland, but it was far for the woman and the child, and I hoped that the Ice Giant would grow old and lose his strength—and I was born here; my father and my father's father hunted in these woods and fished in this river, and men, like trees, take root."

The sun sank into a cold gray cloud in the west. The bite of the wind grew sharper. The hoarse cough of a child echoed from the cave behind him, and the dull crooning song of the mother, as she tried to warm the sick child at her breast, could be heard as the wind was lulled for a moment.

Colder and more cold it grew, but Ang would not enter the cave. He could not bear to hear the troubled breathing of the child or see the face of the mother. He dreaded the coming of the grim White Spirit for this, his last child. Sometimes he fancied he could hear him rushing through the woods above the cliff, and feel the chill of his breath on his face. Had he no other food but children, this dread hunter?

Colder and more cold it grew, but Ang still lingered. He piled dry moss about his feet and tried to bring warmth to his numb hands by hammering off flakes of flint which he would later shape into rough weapons and tools. He struck two flints together in a kind of dumb fury. It was a glancing blow, and one of the flints dropped into the dry moss at his feet with a flicker of sparks. A coil of gray smoke crept out of the moss like a serpent coming out of his hole. A bright spot at its heart grew brighter and brighter, and then red flames lapped hungrily.

Ang leaped to his feet in astonishment. At the smiting of the flint the Fire Spirit had been born. Its breath was the breath of summer. He stretched out his hands over the flames, and the cold loosened its grip. He touched the flame, and it stung him like an angry bee. Clearly the Spirit must not be handled. Awe and wonder filled the mind of Ang. He fell on his knees and prayed to the Fire Spirit: "Spirit of light and heat, Thou hast come in our hour of need—I know not whence. Stay and keep away the terrible cold Spirit with thy red arrows. Stay! I will deny thee nothing. If Thou art hungry, I will feed thee."

[Pg 261] The Fire Spirit

The Fire Spirit

As Ang watched the fire, it hungrily ate up the dry moss,[Pg 262] and lapped the dry sticks. He brought more and fed them to the reaching flames. The northern darkness had shut in the rest of the world, light lingered at the door of the cave of Ang, and the warm breath of the fire brought back the heat of summer in the midst of winter. Joy filled the heart of Ang, and he called to the mother and the child: "Oma, Om, come! The Great One has heard. Come, come, come quickly."

The bark door opened, and the mother came out holding the child to her breast. A cry of wonder broke from her as she saw the fire, but wonder gave way to the mother instinct. The All-Father had heard. Here were warmth and light. The gray huntsman should not have her child. She crouched by the fire, holding the babe in her arms so that she sheltered it from the encircling cold while the glowing fire warmed and healed it. With gratitude and awe she watched the color come back to the child's face, and then she looked with eager questioning at the face of Ang, as it shone with a light brighter than that of the fire.

Finally he spoke: "I sat at the going in of the cave. Fear gripped me; the cold smote me. I said, Odin has forgotten. It may be that he has gone to the Southland because the cold was stronger than he. I heard the barking of the child. The dread of the great robber was on me.[Pg 263] I tried to forget. I smote the flints together. Star-flies seemed to leap from the stone, and the fire was born in the heart of the moss."

Then Ang stood by the mother and the child and placed his left hand on the head of the mother and raised his right hand to the sky to which the leaping flames pointed and said: "Great Father, now I know that none is greater than Thou; not even the giants of the North. Thy shining arrows have driven the huntsman back. And I know that Thine eyes see farther than the eagle floating in the sky, for thou hast seen us alone in the great woods, and Thine ear is quicker to hear than that of the mother listening for the cry of her first-born, for thou hast heard the cry that did not rise to our lips. Henceforth the fire shall be the sign of Thee. As the flames leap up the sky, so shall our thoughts leap to Thee, Our Father."

All through the long cold winter Ang and Oma fed the fire, and Om grew well and strong again. They very soon found that the fire, though it gave so freely the life-giving light and heat, had to be treated with great care. It was a good servant but a poor master. One day little Om toddled too close and burned his hand on a live coal. On another day the wind blew the sparks from the fire into the dry rushes which screened the entrance to the cave, and in a moment the cave was filled with flames and smoke, and Oma had to cover her head and that of Om with skins, and dash out into the open. All the bedding of dry leaves was burned up, and some of the skins were badly scorched. The wooden handles of many of Ang's spears and arrows and knives were burned also. It took many days of hard work to replace what the fire had eaten. So they came to fear as well as to love it.

But Ang and Oma learned one thing from the fire which[Pg 264] burned out their cave that was worth more than a thousand fires could destroy. Part of a deer, which Ang had killed, hung inside of the cave. It had been very hard to get, and it was almost the first thing which Ang thought of after the fire had burned down. If that had been destroyed, they might starve before he could kill another one. He dashed into the cave to see if anything was left, the fear of hunger already gripping his vitals. A strange new odor filled his nostrils and doubled his hunger—the smell of roasted venison. The deer still hung from the side of the cave. The hair had been burned off and the skin hung in rolls, but the flesh was there, brown, hot, dripping red.

At Ang's call Oma hurried in. It needed but one whiff of the fragrant air to convince her that the touch of fire had made of the cold frozen meat food more delicious than the fruits of summer. She snatched a long stone knife from her belt and cut strips of venison steak from the smoking mass and gave to Ang and Om.

After they had eaten, Ang looked into the glowing embers of the fire in front of the cave and pondered. The Fire Spirit had grown angry because they had taken only one of the gifts of the Great Father and had burned out the cave, but it had showed them what its magic touch would do to the frozen meat. The wonder of it grew on him. As he looked into the world at the heart of the coals, he saw the promise of a better one than that in which he lived—a world in which the sons of his son's sons should have discovered all the gifts of the Fire Spirit.

As Ang looked into the fire, Oma looked into the face of Ang and wondered at what she saw there. His look seemed to pierce the blackness behind the fire a hundred days' journey. "Father of my son, what seest thou in the fire?" "I see," said Ang, "the spirits of the things which are to[Pg 265] be. I see, but do not understand all that I see. I see our son's sons talking fire, the flames leaping from their mouths like tongues; I see them crossing the Big Water in great logs which breathe out fire and smoke. I see—but there are no words to tell thee all that I see."

And Oma looked into the embers, and she too saw the flickering spirits of the things to be. She saw countless fires—fires in the woods, fires in caves, fires on altars—but those who tended the fires were the daughters of her daughters.

In a few days the damage done by the fire was repaired. It was Oma who discovered that water stopped the hunger of the fire, and when it grew too fierce she beat it back with boughs dipped in the stream which ran before their cave.

The warmth of the fire and the cooked meat made little Om grow as no boy had ever grown in the cold season, and before the winter was over he was running about as sturdily as a young bear. But it made trouble for Oma. The woods were full of savage wild beasts, bears, panthers, and wolves. Even Ang, with his strength and cunning and great stone axe and sharp knives, was in constant danger. When he went out to hunt, Oma always feared till he came back. What chance then would little Om have? So she tried to keep him always in the clearing before the cave, but the task grew harder and harder as the weather grew warmer and Om's legs stronger and his eyes more curious.

One evening, just as the dark was shutting in, Oma was cracking some bones to get some choice marrow for Ang's supper after he returned from his hunting, and for a moment her back was turned to the boy. When she looked for him he had slipped away into the darkness. The cry of a hyena broke on the stillness of the night, savage, blood-curdling. Then came a terrified scream from little Om.[Pg 266] She leaped to her feet in terror. Where? Where? Which way? The sound seemed to come from all directions. Not knowing what she did, she snatched a burning brand from the fire and dashed into the darkness, leaving a trail of flame behind her.

She had gone only a few yards when she came upon the beast crouching over little Om. Thoughtless of all danger to herself, Oma leaped at the savage beast, whirling the burning brand about her head. The hyena gave a snarl of surprise and fear, dropped Om, and sprang away into the thicket, with leaps longer than any he had made in his life, for the fear of the fire was on him.

Oma snatched her baby to her breast and hurried back to the cave, crooning over him as she went. She brought him to the fire and stripped off his little fur coat; that was in shreds, but the child's skin was only slightly scratched.

As she locked him in her arms to comfort him, Ang suddenly leaped out of the darkness, his great stone axe swinging in his hands. Terror was in his face; sweat dropped from him like rain. "The hyena! I heard his cry here and that of little Om!"

Oma pointed to the baby in her arms, to the torn skin at her feet, to the smoldering branch and to the darkness which had swallowed the great beast. "It was only a moment, but he slipped away into the darkness; I heard the cry, the cry of the beast and the cry of the child. I caught up a brand from the fire and ran; the fearless one ran at the sight of it. The child is safe, see!" And Om looked at his father through tear-dimmed eyes.

Then Ang knelt by the side of the child and its mother and prayed: "O Thou who are greater than the greatest and mightier than the mightiest, again Thou hast saved us by the red magic. By it Thou hast made us, Thy children,[Pg 267] masters of the beasts of the wood, for the fear of the Red One is upon them all."

As the strength of the winter passed and the snow began to melt, Ang had a visit from Wang, who lived some days' journey to the east. During the winter the men of the North saw little of each other. Each family needed a large hunting ground, and men had not learned to live together. The distances between the families were so great that when the snow was deep in the woods months passed in which the isolated families saw no human beings outside of their own circle. But when the ice broke up and the snow melted, the men who were on fairly friendly terms paid visits to each other and exchanged stories of the winter's experiences.

Now Wang approached the cave of Ang with great ceremony. It was neither good manners nor safe to approach another man's home too suddenly. One could not be sure of a welcome, and it was always assumed that one who came suddenly was an enemy. So Wang strolled out on an open spot by the bank of the river which flowed by the cave of Ang, and acted as if he did not know that there was another human being within a day's journey. He tossed stones into the water and watched the ripples. Then he imitated the call of the wild fowl on the river banks.

For a time Ang ignored him, going about as if he saw no one. But Oma and Om peered out curiously from the mouth of the cave. At last Ang wandered down to the river's edge and looked aimlessly everywhere but where Wang stood. He too tossed many stones into the river. Finally, apparently satisfied that all the demands of primitive etiquette had been met, Ang turned to Wang and put his left hand over his heart and raised his right to the sky. Wang did the same; they were of one blood and children of the Great Father.

[Pg 268]

Both dropped their weapons where they stood and went to meet each other unarmed. Ang and Wang had played together as boys, hunted together as young men, and taken wives from the same family, but each spring, after the winter's separation, they met with the same elaborate ceremony, because it was the man custom.

When the men were seated, Oma and Om came out and sat near by. "A long winter," said Ang. "A long winter," answered Wang. "Much cold," said Ang. "Much cold," answered Wang. "The woman and the boy?" asked Wang. "The woman is well, and the child grows like a bear's cub," replied Ang.

Wang turned and looked at Oma and Om and gave a grunt of surprise. "Why, they are as fat and sleek as if it was the time of fruits and nuts instead of the end of the great cold, when even the bear is so thin that he casts no shadow. Has the eagle carried thee to the Southland on its wings? Have you found food that cold does not harden? Has Odin fed you? My woman sits all day at the going in of the cave. She looks old like the moss-bearded oak. She notices nothing, but talks ever about the little one whom the Black Robber took; she cares not for the child that is left, who cries for food like a young kid whose mother the wolves have eaten. And my strength has not come again. My traps and snares take nothing, and my arrow is slower than the flying deer."

At this Oma leaped to her feet and brought a piece of dried venison from the cave and a cake made from a flour of pounded nuts and seeds and put them before the hungry man. He ate ravenously, like a famished wolf, in silence, but questioning with eager eye, "How? Why? What?"

And Ang answered the unspoken question: "It was cold, so cold that the blood in one's body ran slow and[Pg 269] became like ice in the stream. The meat became like stone. The supply of nuts failed. The woman grew weak. The huntsman from the north took the child by the throat. His breath came hard. I said, 'He will be taken as the others have been taken, and the mother will not stay without the child, and I shall be alone,' and I cried to the Great One, to Odin, the All-Father: 'We are cold, give us heat; we are hungry, give us food.' I heard no answer; there was no voice; but the prayer was heard. I sat by the going in of the cave, making knives of flint, not thinking to use them, but hoping to forget and cover up the hoarse crying of the child with the noise of the flints. So I smote two stones together, and the chips fell into the dry moss at my feet. There was a buzzing noise like that of a bee in a flower; a little white cloud rose from the moss, then spots of light like star-flies at night. Red tongues reached out and ate up the moss and the dry sticks. I saw that the Red One was hungry, and I gave him more moss and dry wood to eat. He grew big and bright, and his breath was warm like that of summer, and Oma brought out the child, and he drove away the barking sickness from the child's throat. Then we knew that Odin had heard us."

And Ang told Wang how they had learned to cook the venison; how they had learned to feed the Red One and keep him from wandering. He told how the fear of him was on all the beasts of the woods, so that not even the most savage and the most hungry dared stand before him; and the smallest child was safe within the circle of light.

Then they took the wondering Wang and showed him the sacred fire, gift of the Keeper of Secrets; they cooked venison over the coals so that he might taste it. And when Wang started for home Oma gave him a shoulder of smoked deer's meat and cakes made of acorn meal.

[Pg 270]

And now a strange thing happened. Pity stirred the heart of Ang. Odin had helped him in the time of his troubles; why should he not help Wang? He turned to Oma. "The hunting is good; the stream is full of fish; the Red One can warm more than three. I will go and bring Wang and his woman and his child. They can live in the cave which we thought should be Om's. It is the will of the All-Father that men should live together."

And the men went together and brought Wang's wife and child, and they made a screen and bark door for the new cave home. Oma taught Suta, wife of Wang, the mysteries of the fire, and Ang and Wang became the first neighbors, and that also was one of the gifts of the Revealer, through the Spirit of the Fire.

As time went on, the story of Ang, the fire-man, spread through all the north country, and often men came as Wang had done, many day's journey, through trackless forest, to see the wonderful fire in front of the cave of Ang. But Ang told to no one but Wang the secret of how to call the Fire Spirit. To men who were friendly he gave live coals to carry away in bowls hollowed out of soapstone. Men who were the enemies of Ang did not dare come near his cave for fear of the red knives which guarded it.

By and by men began to say to each other, as they went to hunt or sat about the carefully tended fire, that Ang, the fire-man, must be loved by Odin, and they came to Ang and said: "Tell us of the Great One," and Ang was troubled because he had not heard his voice or seen him. As he hunted in the stillness of the forest, he pondered: "Why had no one ever seen the Great Spirit? Or was the sky his face and the sun and moon his eyes? Why had no one heard his voice? Or was the thunder his voice? If so, no one understood his language." The more he thought, the[Pg 271] more troubled he became. For days at a time he rarely spoke and went about as one in a dream, and Oma said to Wang and to others who came, "The spell of Odin is on him," and they began to look on Ang with awe and wonder.

One night as Ang was far from home and slept in a cave on a hill-side, he dreamed that his shadow self left his body and journeyed to a far country, and there he saw his father and his father's father and the men of long ago. They all sat about a great fire and beckoned to him to join their circle. There was a silence like that before the storm, and each one in the circle looked steadfastly into the fire, which burned on and on, though no one fed its flames.

As Ang continued to look into the flames, it seemed as if something was lifted from his eyes and he saw what no one had seen before. The earth was the body of Odin. His life was the life of all. He had not one voice like man, but many. He spoke in the thunder, in the voice of the storm, but also in the song of the birds and in the words of one's best beloved.

Ang awoke just as the sun was driving the mists from the valley beneath him, and these words came to his lips as if they were a message from the dream-world which he had just left: "The wise son of the All-Father sees him everywhere and hears his voice always." For the first time in his life Ang saw the beauty of the world at his feet, and the song of the birds which filled the vibrant air awoke a new joy of melody and harmony in his soul.

As Oma and Om came out to meet him, he looked at them with newly opened eyes. How beautiful was the ruddy brown sheen of Oma's hair and the light in her eyes as she welcomed him! And little Om's eyes sparkled like dewdrops in the light of early morning, and his laughter was like the splashing of a brook over its pebbles.

[Pg 272]

When Ang told Oma of his dream, she answered: "The men were right. The spell of the Keeper of Secrets was on thee. Thou art a man apart. Henceforth thou shalt tell men the will of the One who hides himself."

And so Ang became one of the voices of Odin. From far and near men in trouble and men in doubt came to him, and he spoke words of comfort and wisdom. And every year before the cold kept men apart they gathered at the home of Ang. They built a great stone altar, and each man threw a log upon the fire which Ang had kindled. And they brought the choicest from their hunting and had a great feast, but they always gave the best to Ang, and he put it in the fire, saying, "The best we have is Thine and we are Thine." And when they had feasted and were satisfied, Ang talked to them of the All-Father, and each year his words were wiser and more winning.

Before the men departed each took a brand from the fire and marched about the altar chanting:

Spirit red, Spirit red,
Thine hunger has been fed.
Spirit hot, Spirit hot,
Forget us not, forget us not
As the year grows old
Keep us from the cold!
In the darkness of the night
Be our shining light,
Spirit white, Spirit white!
From "Around the Fire", by Hanford M. Burr.    
Courtesy of Association Press.

[Pg 273]


During the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries there took place, first in Italy and afterwards in the other countries of Europe, a great change known in history as the Renaissance. The long word simply means "rebirth", and the name was given to this period because then all the interest in art and literature and music and beauty of every kind, which had seemed for centuries to be dead, came to life again. Painters and poets and musicians began to fill the world with their songs and their pictures. You are going to read now the story of one of the most famous of the painters of the fifteenth century in Italy.

Leonardo da Vinci, the great painter, was the son of a lawyer in the beautiful city of Florence. Even as a tiny child he began to show what profession he was likely to follow, for as soon as he could crawl, he would scramble away when his mother was not looking, to a place in the garden where after a shower there was always a pile of mud. He would sit happily on the ground pinching the mud into some sort of shape, and the older he grew the more the shape became like that of some object that he knew. When his mother missed him and came in search of him, the baby would scream in disgust, and the only way to quiet him was to play on the lute, an instrument very much like our mandolin.

Ser Piero, Leonardo's father, was very proud of his astonishing little son, and resolved that he must have the very best teachers that could be found. So the boy was still very young when his lessons began. Lessons were no trouble to him, for he quite took away the breath of all his teachers by his amazing quickness, no matter whether the work was arithmetic, or languages, or music. Whatever he heard once he understood and remembered.

[Pg 274]

Whatever lessons he might be doing, however, Leonardo spent his spare time in drawing and in modelling figures in clay. His father decided that this was the talent which the boy ought specially to make use of. So he took his son to his friend the sculptor Verocchio. When they reached the studio, Leonardo was given some clay and told to model anything he liked. He sat down on the floor, and soon finished a tiny statuette which was so lifelike that it might have been the work of the sculptor himself. Verocchio was delighted, and declared that he must have this boy as a pupil at once.

As Leonardo grew older, he began to outstrip his master in the art of painting, though not in that of sculpture. At one time, it is said, Verocchio was working on a picture of the baptism of Jesus by John, in which an angel was represented as standing at one side. He entrusted the painting of this angel to his pupil. When the master came to look at the finished figure, he stood gazing in astonished silence. He was too true an artist not to feel that he and Leonardo had changed places, and that the boy's painting of the angel was worth all the rest of the picture. The story goes that Verocchio was so impressed by the feeling that he could only do badly what Leonardo could do perfectly that he never painted again.

One of the most interesting tales of the artist's boyhood tells of his painting of a shield. His father, Ser Piero, had gone to his country house outside of Florence. One evening a farmer of the neighborhood was brought to him as he sat in the garden, asking that he might speak with Ser Piero. He knew the farmer well, for they had often gone fishing together. "Well, what now, Francisco?" he asked, as the farmer came up bowing and bearing in his hands a wooden shield. Francisco explained that he had cut down[Pg 275] a fig tree near his house, as it was too old to bear fruit, and that he had cut out of its wood the shield he was carrying. He had brought it to Ser Piero, hoping that the master would have the goodness to get it painted with some design, for he wished to hang it up in his kitchen as a remembrance of the old tree.

So when Ser Piero next went to Florence he took the shield to his son, not telling him to whom it belonged, but merely asking him to paint something on it. Leonardo, examining the piece of wood, found that it was rough and ill made, and that it would need much finishing before it would be possible to paint on it. So he held it before the fire till the fibres were softened and the crookedness straightened out, and then he planed and polished it. When it was all ready, he began to think about what the picture on it should be. A look of mischief came into his eyes.

"I know!" he said to himself. "A shield ought to have on it some frightful thing, so that the very sight of it may make the enemies of its wearer tremble. The person who sees this shield shall be as frightened as if he beheld the head of Medusa; only instead of being turned to stone, he will most likely run away." You see, he did not know that the shield was to adorn the home of a simple farmer.

Smiling to himself, Leonardo went out into the fields and hunted about until he had collected a large number of strange creatures, hedgehogs, lizards, locusts, snakes, and many others. These he carried home and locked up in the room he used for a workshop, where no one was allowed to enter but himself. Using the ugly things as models, he began to paint on the shield a monster formed out of all the creatures, with eyes and legs everywhere. It was a long time before he succeeded in making anything frightful[Pg 276] enough to suit him. Again and again he erased his work and did it over, trying to combine his creatures differently. But at last something so terrible stared him in the face that he almost felt frightened himself.

"The monster is ready," he said with a laugh; "but I must find a background fitting for him."

So he painted as a background a black and narrow cavern, at whose mouth stood the shapeless creature he had made, all eyes, all legs, all savage jaws. Flames poured from it on every side, and a cloud of vapor rose upwards from its many nostrils. After days of hard work, Leonardo at last went to his father and told him he had finished the shield, which he hoped would please its owner. Ser Piero came at once, and was led into the partly darkened studio, where in just the right light the shield stood on an easel. But no sooner was the father within the room than he turned to fly, so terrible was the object that met his gaze.

"It will do, I see," said Leonardo. "I wanted to make something so dreadful that everyone would shiver with fear at the sight of it. Take it away with you now; but I had better wrap it up, or you will frighten people out of their wits as you go along."

Ser Piero took the shield and went away without telling his son anything about old Francisco. But he was quite sure that the farmer would not like the picture, and that it was not at all suitable to hang in a farmhouse kitchen; and more than that, he felt it was far too wonderful a painting to fall into the hands of a peasant and never be famous. So in order to save the old man's feelings, he went to a shop and bought a shield of the same size as the first one, which had on it a device of a heart pierced by an arrow; and the next time he went to the country he sent for Francisco to come and get it.

[Pg 277]

"Oh, your Excellency, how beautiful!" cried the old man in delight, as he received his shield after his long waiting.

"I thought you would be pleased," answered Ser Piero, thinking to himself how frightened rather than pleased the farmer would have been with Leonardo's monster.

Adapted from "The Strange Story Book", by Andrew Lang.


This selection consists of three parts. Where does each part end? Write an appropriate title for each part.


All should begin reading at the same moment. Can you after one minute give a good account of the meaning of civil death?

According to law a person may be alive and enjoying good health and still under certain conditions be dead to all his civil rights. In some states, as New York, this is true of one sentenced to the state prison for life; all his civil rights are taken from him and to the world he is as dead. In all states, absence for a specified time without any knowledge of the whereabouts of the individual renders him legally dead to his civil rights; this period is in most states seven years. Supposing A, living in Wisconsin, should leave his home and family and go to Alaska. If at the end of seven years no word had been received from him, the law assumes him to be dead; his estate can be settled by probate, provided the family consents, and his wife may legally marry again. Should he afterwards return he could not compel the court to restore his estate or family; these are legally forfeited, beyond all redress.

From "The World Book".    
Courtesy of W. F. Quarrie & Co.

[Pg 278]


In the "movies" you have surely seen pictures of the Far North—Alaska or northern Canada, or even the northern United States—with the brave, rough men who live about mining or lumber camps or trading posts. In many of the pictures, you remember, there have been Indians. Here is an account of the life of those Indians when they are away from the trading posts.

At the end of this story you will find an outline partly made out. After you have read the story through, compare it with the outline, and fill in the topics left blank under a, b, c, etc. You may add more sub-topics if you think you need them.

When white men first came to America, they thought it was a country called India of which they had often heard. So they called the people they found here Indians. They also called them red men, because they were about the color of a copper cent that has been carried a while. These red men did not have many tools and other things to make it easy to work and to live. They had no horses, cows, pigs, sheep or chickens, so they had to catch wild animals for food. They had no guns nor rifles, but made spears and bows and arrows with which to kill their game. They had no iron. Their arrow points and spear heads were of sharpened stone, as was a heavy tool they made something like our hatchet. It was a very dull, poor hatchet. They had no cloth to make clothes. Instead, they used the skins of wild animals they caught or shot with their bows and arrows. Instead of houses they had tents or wigwams made of skins. The Indians thought the white men's things were wonderful, and they were much pleased to trade furs and game for blankets, guns, powder, and bullets. The Indians like bright, pretty things, so they were very[Pg 279] fond of trading for beads to make necklaces and ornaments for their suits.

After a long time, the white men took most of the Indians' country, but there is still a large part of North America where there are more Indians than white men. This is far to the north in Canada, in a wide strip between the towns and farms of the white men and the cold, snow land of the Eskimos. The soldiers who have been to the Great War tell us much about England, France, and Germany; but the country where the Indians still have their hunting grounds is larger than all of these countries put together. The region is covered with evergreen forests, a great silent land of deep snow and trees and cold. It is too cold and rocky for the white man to make farms, so he has not cut down the trees. There are no cities nor houses, nothing but forests where the Indian hunts game and lives in his tent as he has always lived.

To trade with these Indians, the white men have built stores in the edge of the Indian country. They are called Posts—Trading Posts. When the warm days of June come and the ice is all melted, the keeper of a Post begins to look up the river watching for canoes to come around the bend. At last he sees one. In front sits an Indian woman paddling, and in the stern of the canoe sits Otelne, her husband, paddling and also steering. They are coming to the post to trade. In the middle of the boat are a boy, a girl, a brand new baby, and a dog. The boy's name is Akusk (arrow); the girl's name is Wabogum (flower). The baby's name is Wabshish (little white hare). He is tied to a board to keep him safe and warm. The canoe contains one more thing, very precious, a big bundle of fur skins. This is the wages of a whole year, the result of a hard winter's work in the forest.

[Pg 280]

The keeper of the Post shakes hands with Otelne. Otelne opens the bale of furs, and the first afternoon he and his wife trade a few muskrat skins for some flour, beans, bacon and canned peaches. Then the Indians camp and have a feast. Other canoes come down the river bringing other families until the post becomes a great picnic ground. They talk over the happenings of the winter, of getting lost in storms, of upsetting their canoes, of falling through the ice, of the bears they have caught, and the wolves that have chased them. They wonder what has happened to the Indians who do not come back. They have canoe races and the different families, or tribes, play match games of la crosse. This game, which the white men learned from the Indians, is now the national game of Canada, as baseball is of the United States.

In August the trading is over, and the Indians start back to the hunting grounds for another year's work. The canoe is loaded full. Instead of the bale of furs, Otelne has in his canoe a new tent, a sheet-iron stove, some stove pipe, twenty-five steel traps, a rifle, one thousand cartridges, fish hooks and fishing line, a wood saw, knives, axes, buckets, blankets, and a lot of white men's clothes. He did not buy any shoes because he would rather have the moccasins he makes himself.

It is hard work to paddle the heavy load up the river against the swift current. Presently they hear the roaring noise of a waterfall where the stream jumps down over some rocks. The canoe cannot pass this, so they all get out and carry the canoe and all its load, bit by bit, along a little path that leads to the quiet water above the falls. Here they load the canoe again and paddle on, but they soon come to another carrying place, or portage as it is called, and have to unload again. They are not afraid to[Pg 281] leave their belongings while they go back to the foot of the falls, for no Indian would think of stealing anything he found in this way.

You can see why the Indians do not use white men's boats, for no white man's boat is as light as the birch bark canoe. You can also see why they do not take much food from the post. They cannot carry it and all they need for camping and hunting too. They must have the tent and traps, so they take only food enough to last until they get far enough from the post to find game.

After a few days' journey they leave the main stream and go up one of its branches. Here they come to a place where the stream widens into a lake. The water is very still, and as the fishing is good, the Indians camp here for a week and rest. There are so many wolves and wild cats in the woods that Otelne puts up the tent on a little island out in the middle of the lake.

For many days they go on upstream. Over and over again they have to carry their goods around rapids. The dark branches of spruce, hemlock, and fir trees often hang over the stream.

Trout, pickerel, and other fish dart in behind the rocks around which the currents flow. Sometimes a muskrat, a beaver, or an otter swims quickly into his hole in the bank. But sometimes the rifle is too quick for him and the Indians have fresh meat for supper. Each day they pass the mouths of little streams and the main stream gets smaller and smaller, till at last it is hardly more than a brook.

They are busy nearly all the time carrying their supplies around rapids. At last they can go no farther in the canoe because the stream has grown too small and rocky. To go still farther in their direction, the Indians must find a stream which flows the opposite way. To find this stream[Pg 282] they must cross a hill, because, you see, the water will run down the hill on the other side, gathering more and more water, and getting larger as it goes. This water parting is called a divide, or watershed. There is such a divide at the top of every mountain range. For instance, all the rivers flowing east of the Alleghany Mountains run east to the Atlantic Ocean; all those flowing west run finally into the Mississippi River. So the Alleghany Mountains are a divide.

Otelne knows of one place where the streams bend in such a way that he can, in an hour, carry his canoe from canoe-water on one stream to canoe-water on the stream over the hill. The Indians know where these good portages are just as country boys know where they can catch rabbits, or as city boys know where they can find a place to play. For many days, Otelne steers his canoe down stream, camping on the bank each night.

In late October the first snow falls. They camp beside the lonely river, and the fur hunting begins in earnest. Otelne fixes a round of traps. He starts away from his tent and makes a large circle in the forest, fixing a round of traps as he goes. When he cannot see the sun, he keeps his direction through the forest by noticing the moss which grows only on the shady side of a tree trunk. He can keep his direction at night, too, if he can see the stars, for long before white men came, Indians had noticed that one star always seemed to be in the same place. They call it the "Great Star". We call it the "North Star". The pointers in the Great Dipper show us where it is. Otelne watches them every clear night.

Twenty miles he travels, setting his traps wherever he sees in the snow the tracks of the animals he wants. He drags sweet-smelling meat along the snow, hoping that animals crossing this trail will follow it to the traps. After a day or two, he goes around again, putting fresh bait on his traps and taking out the animals he has caught. After several rounds, he finds that game is getting scarce here, so he and his wife put the tent and all their things on two toboggans (sleds), tuck the baby down in the blankets, and trudge all day through the forest. When night comes they put up the tent on the snow, cut evergreen boughs to make a thick carpet, and build a fire in the sheet-iron stove. All winter long they move every two or three weeks, finding a new camp whenever a new hunting-ground is necessary.

[Pg 283] Otelne Walks on Snow Shoes.

Otelne Walks on Snow Shoes.

Can you see Otelne as he visits his traps? He walks[Pg 284] on snow shoes to keep from sinking into the snow which is now three feet deep. His big dog pulls a toboggan on which is an axe, a package of raw smoked meat in a little box of birch bark, and a roll of blankets. Akusk, the twelve-year-old boy, goes with his father, from whom he learns all the Indian arts and the ways of the animals in the forest. It is all the schooling he ever gets. How would you like to get your schooling that way?

The first trap is empty and the bait gone, so Otelne puts fresh bait in it. The second trap holds a fine mink, dead and frozen stiff. His skin is worth ten dollars. The fifth trap has in it the foot of a muskrat and some scraps of fur lying around. Some hungry animal has raided the trap, and the big dog, Wagush, smells the trail, whines, and jumps about so that he upsets the sled. Otelne turns him loose, and away he goes yelping through the forest, until at last his regular baying tells Otelne that he has treed the animal. It is a lynx. The rifle brings him down and he is placed on the sled along with the mink.

At nightfall, ten miles from the tent, they come to a shelter made of boughs. When Otelne set the traps, he[Pg 285] built this shelter to keep off the cold wind, for he knew he would have to sleep here on bitter cold nights. He builds a roaring fire in front of the shelter. They eat the mink, give the scraps and bones to Wagush, wrap up in rabbit-skin blankets, and lie down with their heads toward the shelter, their feet toward the fire, and the dog beside them. Two hours later Wagush wakes them with a growl. Two wolves are prowling around in the spruce trees, but wolves fear fire, so Otelne throws on more wood and they slink away. At dawn the Indians are up and on their way to the rest of the traps.

They kill a bear. This is great luck, for now they have meat enough to last for weeks. Even with the help of Akusk and Wagush, Otelne has hard work to drag that bear on the toboggan six miles back to the tent. All three are so weary they have to rest all the next day. Sulian, the mother, who skins the animals, takes care of the skins and smokes the meat. That is her part of the work. You may be sure that the children are glad to see their father and brother come back, for there isn't another family within twenty miles, nor is there one white man within a hundred miles.

Day after day, through the long, cold winter, Otelne and his family hunt the fur that they can trade for the white man's tools and supplies. When the trapping season ends, Otelne is four hundred miles from the post, and it takes many weeks of canoeing to get back there for summer trading. They carry with them a bundle of smoked meat to eat where game or fish cannot be found.

Each year Indian families go out for furs and never come back. The canoe may upset and swift water carry away all their things. Sometimes they get lost and freeze to death in terrible blizzards. The hunting may be bad,[Pg 286] so they starve. The father may be drowned or break his leg and freeze to death away out in the forest. Then the mother cannot get enough game to keep the children alive, so they all starve and the wolves eat them. The fur gatherer has a hard, cold life in the far North, but it is better than it used to be before he traded with the white man and got guns, knives, traps, and fish hooks.

When all goes well with the fur gatherer, the boys and girls in the little tent play many games. They are fond of checkers. To make a checker-board, they split a piece of wood out of a log, smooth one side of it with an axe, mark it into squares with a knife, and blacken some of them with charcoal. For men, they saw off short pieces of a stick as thick as your thumb. Jackstraws is another favorite game, but the straws are tiny canoe paddles, knives, guns, snowshoes, snow shovels, and canoes, all whittled out of wood, making a queer looking pile. They have one campfire game in which they shake up eight disks of bone in a bowl. This game is so hard to learn that my friend, Professor Speck, spent three days learning it, and the rules for counting the score would fill three pages of a book like this one. This game, so hard to learn, shows that the Indian would be as smart as the white man if he had a chance to learn the same things. White men who hunt with the Indians like them and say they are good companions.

The white men from the trading posts bring the furs down to our great cities, where they are made into mittens and muffs and coats and ladies' furs, and the next winter, while the Indian is back in the forest following his traps, we can see people wearing the furs in almost any part of the United States.

J. Russell Smith.    
Courtesy of The John C. Winston Co.

[Pg 287]


1. Early life of the Indians.

2. Their present home in the North.

3. A visit to the trading post.
(a) Who came

4. The Indians' return.

5. The life of a trapper.

6. Games.


1. The setting of a story tells the place of the story, when it occurs, and who are the actors. Your teacher will ask one of you to give the setting of "Otelne, the Indian of the Great North Woods".

2. If you were an Indian boy or girl, how do you think you would feel during the winter about the summer trip to the trading post?

3. How does the trading post help the Indians? Make a list of things they buy. What can you think of that the author of the story did not mention? What else besides the cost will the Indians have to think of when deciding whether or not to buy anything?

4. Tell about the trip back into the woods after visiting the post. Why do they go so far?

5. Tell the story of a visit to the trap with Otelne as if you were Akusk. Don't be afraid to put in probable incidents not told by the author.

[Pg 288]


Arrange your papers with your name and grade on the first line; place the date and your room or teacher's name on the second line; leave the third line blank, and, beginning with the fourth line, number the lines from one to seven. This exercise is to help you to read quickly and accurately. See that you understand all the directions in each problem before you try to carry them out. On the other hand, work as quickly as you can.

1.How am I to sing your praise
Happy chimney-corner days,
Sitting safe in nursery nooks
Reading picture story-books.
(Stevenson—"Picture Books in Winter.")

If this is a picture of play, draw a horseshoe on the first line. If it is a picture of quiet, draw a hitching-post.

2. The long war with the Danes had left England without law and order. Trade and commerce had almost ceased to exist. The monasteries and churches were in ruins and the schools nearly all destroyed.

Which of the words below best states the cause of this destruction?


Write your answer on the second line.

3. The axle in breaking had thrown the full weight of the heavy cart upon the body of the unconscious boy. Although there were many willing hands ready to help, none could lift the weight. Jean saw the crowd and hurried to the spot. Bracing himself, he placed his massive[Pg 289] shoulders against the side of the cart. Slowly but surely it lifted and the child was drawn safely from beneath.

Which of the following words best describes Jean?

kind     thoughtful     strong     brave     good

Write your answer on the third line.

4. If you think after reading this paragraph that it is easy to land a trout, write the word hard on the fourth line. If you think it is hard, write the word easy there.

Trout fishing in mountain streams is said to be the greatest sport in the world. When a trout has been caught on the hook, it is usually a question of which will tire first, the fish or the fisherman. Often the fish will get the best of it and the fisherman be forced to go home with a broken rod and no fish for his pains.

5. If in the following words c is found with h more often than with r, write church on the fifth line. But if c is found more often with r, write crown there.


6. On the sixth line write any words in this sentence which have the same number of letters as the fourth word of the sentence, but which have no letters in common.

7. If a soldier wears out a pair of shoes every month, how many pairs of shoes will be needed for a regiment of 3000 men for a year of service?

Write the answer on the seventh line.

[Pg 290]


This is the story of Verdun Belle, a trench dog, who adopted a young leatherneck, followed him to the edge of the battle around Chateau-Thierry and was waiting for him when they carried him out. It is a true story.

Belle was a setter, shabby white, with great splotches of chocolate brown in her coat. Her ears were brown and silken. She was under size and would not have stood a chance among the haughtier breeds shown in splendor at dog shows in Madison Square Garden. But the marines in the regiment to which she attached herself thought there never was a dog like her since the world began.

No one in the regiment knew whence she came or why. When she joined the outfit in a sector near Verdun, she singled out one of the privates as her very own and attached herself to him for the duration of the war. The young marine would talk long and earnestly to her, and every one declared that Belle could "comprè" English.

She used to curl up at his feet when he slept or follow silently to keep him company at the listening post. She would sit hopefully in front of him whenever he settled down with his laden mess kit, which the cooks always heaped extra high in honor of Belle.

Belle was as used to war as the most weather-beaten French poilu. The tremble of the ground did not disturb her and the whining whir of the shells overhead only made her twitch and wrinkle her nose in her sleep. She was trench-broken. You could have put a plate of savory pork chops on the parapet and nothing would have induced her to go after them.

She weathered many a gas attack. Her master contrived a protection for her by cutting down and twisting a French[Pg 291] gas mask. At first this sack over her nose irritated her tremendously; but once, when she was trying to claw it off with her forepaws, she got a whiff of the poisoned air. Then a great light dawned on Belle; and after that, at the first alarm, she would race for her mask. You could not have taken it from her until her master's pat on her back told her everything was all right.

In the middle of May, Belle presented a proud but not particularly astonished regiment with nine confused and wriggling puppies, black-and-white, or, like the mother, brown-and-white, and possessed of immense appetites. Seven of these were alive and kicking when the order came for the regiment to pull up stakes and speed across France to help stem the German tide north of the troubled Marne.

In the rush and hubbub of marching orders Belle and her brood were forgotten by every one but the young marine. It never once entered his head to leave her or her pups behind. Somewhere he found a market basket and tumbled the litter into that. He could carry the pups, he explained, and the mother dog would trot at his heels.

Now the amount of hardware a marine is expected to carry on the march is carefully calculated to the maximum strength of the average soldier, yet this leatherneck found extra muscle somewhere for his precious basket. If it came to the worst, he thought, he could jettison his pack. It was not very clear in his mind what he would do with his charges during a battle, but he trusted to luck and Verdun Belle.

For twenty-five miles he carried his burden along the parched French highway. No one wanted to jeer him out of it, nor could have if they would. When there followed a long advance by camion, he yielded his place to the basket of wriggling pups, while he himself hung on the tail-board.

[Pg 292]

But there was more hiking, and the basket proved too much. It seemed that the battle line was somewhere far off. Solemnly the young marine killed four of the puppies, discarded the basket and slipped the other three into his shirt. Thus he trudged on his way, carrying those three, pouched in forest green, as a kangaroo carries its young, while the mother dog trotted trustingly behind.

One night he found that one of the black-and-white pups was dead. The road by this time was black with hurrying troops, lumbering lorries jostling the line of advancing ambulances, and dust-gray columns of soldiers moving on as far ahead and as far behind as the eye could see. Passing silently in the other direction was the desolate procession of refugees from the invaded countryside. Now and then a herd of cows or a little cluster of fugitives from some desolated village, trundling their most cherished possessions in wheelbarrows and baby carts, would cause an eddy in the traffic.

Somewhere in this crowding and confusion Belle was lost. In the morning there was no sign of her, and the young marine did not know what to do. He begged a cup of milk from an old French woman, and with the eye dropper from his kit he tried to feed the two pups. It did not work well. Faintly the wind brought down the valley from far ahead the sound of cannon. Soon he would be in the thick of it, and there was no Belle to care for the pups.

Two ambulances of a field hospital were passing in the unending caravan. A lieutenant who looked human was in the front seat of one of them, a sergeant beside him. The leatherneck ran up to them, blurted out his story, gazed at them imploringly and thrust the puppies into their hands. "Take good care of them," he said; "I don't suppose I'll ever see them again."

[Pg 293]

And he was gone. A little later in the day that field hospital was pitching its tents and setting up its kitchens and tables in a deserted farm. Amid all the hurry of preparation for the big job ahead they found time to worry about those pups. The problem was food. Corned willy was tried and found wanting. Finally the first sergeant hunted up a farm-bred private, and the two of them spent that evening chasing four nervous and distrustful cows around a pasture trying vainly to capture enough milk to provide supper for the new members of the hospital staff.

Next morning the problem was still unsolved. But it was solved that evening. For that evening a fresh contingent of marines trooped by the farm and in their wake, tired, anxious, but undiscouraged, was Verdun Belle. Six miles back two days before she had lost her master, and until she should find him again she evidently had thought that any marine was better than none.

The troops did not halt at the farm, but Belle did. At the gate she stopped dead in her tracks, drew in her lolling tongue, sniffed inquiringly at the evening air, and, like a flash, a white streak along the drive, she raced to the distant tree, where, on a pile of discarded dressings in the shade, the pups were sleeping.

All the corps men stopped work and stood around and marveled. For the onlooker it was such a family reunion as warms the heart. For the worried mess sergeant it was a great relief. For the pups it was a mess call, clear and unmistakable.

So with renewed faith in her heart and only one worry left in her mind, Verdun Belle and her puppies settled down with this field hospital. When the next day the reach of the artillery made it advisable to move down the valley to the shelter of a fine hillside chateau, you may be sure that room was made in the first ambulance for the three wanderers.

[Pg 294] Two Cots Were Shoved Together Under a Spreading Tree

Two Cots Were Shoved Together Under a Spreading Tree

In a grove of trees beside the house the tents were pitched[Pg 295] and the cots of the expected patients ranged side by side. The wounded came—came hour after hour in steady streams, and the boys of the hospital worked on them night and day. They could not possibly keep track of all the cases, but there was one who did. Always a mistress of the art of keeping out from under foot, very quietly Belle hung around and investigated each ambulance that turned in from the main road and backed up with its load of pain to the door of the receiving room.

Then one evening they lifted out a young marine, listless in the half stupor of shell shock. To the busy workers he was just Case No. Such and Such, but there was no need to tell any one who saw the wild rejoicing of the dog that Belle had found her own at last.

The first consciousness her master had of his new surroundings was the feel of her rough pink tongue licking the dust from his face. And those who passed that way on the following Sunday found two cots shoved together in the kindly shade of a spreading tree. On one the mother dog lay, contented with her puppies. Fast asleep on the other, his arm thrown out so that one grimy hand could touch one silken ear, lay the young marine. Before long they would have to ship him on to the evacuation hospital, on from there to the base hospital, on and on and on. It was not very clear to anyone how another separation could be prevented. It was a perplexing question, but they knew in their hearts that they could safely leave the answer to some one else. They could leave it to Verdun Belle.

—"Stars and Stripes."

[Pg 296]

1. Comprè and poilu are "soldiers' French". From the way they are used here, what do you think they mean?

2. The following are war terms. See if you can find out, if you do not already know, what they mean.

sector camion
listening post lorries
mess kit leatherneck
parapet corned willy
jettison evacuation hospital

3. Why do you like the young marine?

4. How do you suppose Belle solved the problem left to her?

5. Does the story make you feel amused or sad?


You will need only a small piece of paper in order to solve this test. Read the directions very carefully and do nothing but what they say.

At the top of your paper write "east" no matter whether the sun rises there or not. Now if Christmas comes in December put a cross in the center of your paper, but if not, put a circle there or else a square.

At the bottom of your paper write a wrong answer to the first of the following questions:

1. When did Columbus discover America?

2. Who invented the electric light?

Do not answer the second question unless you have skipped the first. But if you know the answer sign your own name in the lower right hand corner of your paper, but if you do not know, sign in the lower left hand corner.

[Pg 297]


This drill will test your ability to recognize easily the relationships between words and between things, an ability very necessary for both reading and thinking.

1. Write your name on the first line of your paper, and your grade on the second at the right. Beginning with the fourth line write the figures 1 to 10.

2. In each group below, the first two words have a certain connection in meaning. When you see this relationship between the first two words, you can find among the five words that follow two other words that bear the same relationship. Thus, in group one, the saw is a tool used by the carpenter. Now if you look among the word that follow, you will see that the words farmer and plough are connected in meaning in the same way. Write these four words after figure 1:

1. carpenter  saw  farmer  plough

3. Look at group two. Hen and chicks are words that have a certain relation, and similarly, of the five words that follow, cat and kittens are the only two that are connected in the same way. Write these four words after figure 2:

2. hen  chicks  cat  kittens

4. Complete the exercise by selecting the two words in each remaining group that are related in meaning in the same way that the given words are related in meaning. When finished, wait quietly for the others.

1. carpenter, saw (farmer, sky, plough, trees, field).
2. hen, chicks (corn, feed, cat, milk, kittens).
3. automobile, garage (wheel, horse, owner, stable, door).
4. cow, milk (sheep, pasture, grass, fence, wool).
5. aeroplane, air (sail, pilot, ship, sea, wind).
[Pg 298]6. rail, steel (locomotive, window, house, door, glass).
7. spool, thread (shelf, librarian, books, picture, print).
8. poet, poem (verse, rhyme, brush, artist, picture).
9. wool, sweater (knit, silk, dress, seamstress, scissors).
10. summer, rain (winter, sled, December, snow, overcoat).


Did you ever play charades? Here is a brief statement about charades taken from a cyclopedia. See if you can read it through in a half-minute so as to give the substance of it.

A charade is a popular form of riddle, the answer to which is a word of several syllables, each of which alone is in itself a word. Each syllable, taken as a word, is described, and finally a puzzling definition of the whole word is given. The following is an example: "Some one threw my first and second at me, and it hit my third. It did not hurt me, for it was only a branch of my whole." The answer is Mistletoe. A girl, sitting under a high table, would suggest the word misunderstand.

A pleasing charade requiring more thought is in the form of a rhyme, as—

"My first is a circle, my second a cross;
If you meet with my whole, look out for a toss."

The answer is Ox. Then, too, charades are often presented in the form of little plays, each syllable representing a scene. They are then called acting charades. This form of amusement is much in vogue on social occasions. It is thought the name was derived from a French word meaning idle talk, which in its turn was derived from Spanish words meaning speech and actions of a clown.

From "The World Book".    
Courtesy of W. F. Quarrie & Co.

[Pg 299]


More people, perhaps, read a newspaper every day than read any other form of print. At the breakfast table, in the trolley car, or in the railroad train, morning and evening you see readers buried in their newspapers. Many people read at least two papers a day, and many people read very little else. But unfortunately a great many of these people read the newspapers very hastily, and sometimes they fail to grasp the real sense of the column beneath the catchy headlines. They need practice in the rapid and intelligent reading of a news article.

You may begin to have that sort of practice now, if you will read rapidly the following newspaper account of the homecoming, in September, 1919, of one of America's greatest soldiers, and be able to answer the following questions. Your teacher may ask each row of pupils to be responsible for two or three of the questions.

1. When and where and from what ship did General Pershing land?

2. Who else came home on that ship?

3. How often and where did General Pershing reply to addresses of welcome?

4. What important person made the chief address of welcome?

5. What proof of the nation's gratitude was given to General Pershing?

6. Where would you like best to have been among the crowd of onlookers?

7. Do you think you would like General Pershing if you were one of his officers or soldiers? Why?

8. What was the most important thing that General Pershing said?

9. On whom was the joke, General March or the sentry?

[Pg 300]


Tribute Belongs to Men Who
Fell, General Tells Cheering
Throng in New York


Thousands Await Through the Night
to Greet America's "Jack"
on Return Home


New York, Sept. 8.—General John J. Pershing, commander-in-chief of the A. E. F., came home from France today and was welcomed in a manner which fully conveyed to him the gratitude and pride with which the American people estimate his services in leading the nation's greatest army to victory in the world's greatest war.

From early morning, when the sea monster Leviathan arrived in the Hudson—a shadowy giant in a misty sunrise—until the middle of the afternoon, when the general insisted upon an intermission for a much-needed nap, he was the central figure of a demonstration which for brilliancy and gayety has rarely been equaled in the history of New York City.

The presentation of his permanent commission as a full general in the regular army, accomplished by the secretary of war ten minutes after the general had stepped upon American soil, while perhaps the most important tribute, was merely an auspicious beginning of what was to follow. A river pageant on the Hudson from Hoboken to the Battery, a triumphal march through surging crowds on Broadway and Fifth Avenue, exercises at the City Hall, during which he was given the freedom of the city for four days; a reception, a luncheon, and in the evening a dinner and a theatre party in his honor—all this was part of the crowded and colorful program. None was surprised, therefore, when the distinguished guest good-naturedly remarked that if this continued long he would "almost wish that the war had gone on."

Pleased To Be Back Home

The general accepted it all quietly and simply. He was pleased to be home. He could not conceal that, but neither could he conceal the fact that he would have preferred to come home without so much fuss being stirred up about it. He bowed, nodded, waved, or smiled acknowledgment of the cheering. The Pershing smile, incidentally, will without doubt take its place among the famous smiles of America. All great Americans seem to have a characteristic smile. There was the Roosevelt smile, and there are the Taft and Wilson smiles, and now there is the Pershing smile, quite as striking as any of the others. The people liked it immensely; but more than that they liked the brief responses made by the general to the eulogies delivered by the secretary of war, the governor of New York, and the mayor of the city. He accepted all of them—with a reservation, that reservation being that he accepted them not for himself but for the boys who went over and fought and died for the flag. It was this that convinced the people that Pershing was truly a great man.

[Pg 301]

The Leviathan, bringing, besides General Pershing, his picked "composite regiment" and what is left of the first division, "the first to go over and the last to come back," tied up at Hoboken at 9:55 o'clock, with the commander-in-chief of the overseas forces on top of its pilot house. Assembled on the pier were nearly 1000 welfare workers, soldiers and guests.

General March Held Up

The first to board the vessel as soon as the gangplank had been lowered, with the exception of two naval officers, was a party of newspaper correspondents and photographers. At this point there was an amusing incident that somewhat relieved the anxiety and general excitement. A sentry, seeing the correspondents and photographers making ready for an immediate rush on the vessel, raised his voice in protest. General Peyton C. March, chief of staff, stepped forward with assurances that everything would be all right. But the sentry, sticking to his point with surprising determination, in view of the high rank he was addressing, would not be assured, and those who were listening understood his audacity when he stood up straight in front of General March and declared:

"But, sir, I have just been talking with the secretary of war, sir, and he says, sir, that no one can go aboard."

General March was as surprised as any one else. Having no reply to make to a declaration of that kind, despite his rank, he sought out the secretary of war and soon returned saying he had "straightened things out." Then came the laugh.

"Very well, sir," said the sentry, saluting nervously, and by this time in perspiration from excitement. "B-b-b-but I have only eight more days to go and I-I-I naturally d-don't want to get into any j-j-am with the secretary of w-war, sir."

Met by Secretary Baker

As he stepped from the gangplank General Pershing was greeted by Secretary Baker and escorted to an open space, where a small dais had been erected in front of a group of chairs. The chairs were occupied by the guests and other staff officers, while Secretary Baker and the guest of honor took seats on the platform.

"Here there is to be a momentary halt in the day's program to extend to General Pershing a word of greeting and a message from the President," said Mr. Baker, opening the first ceremony of the general's official welcome. "This incident in today's events is to be brief, and immediately after its conclusion General Pershing will become the guest of the city of New York."

Commission is Presented

Then it was that the secretary presented the hero with his permanent commission as general in the regular army, after which he delivered a brief address, closing with a message of greeting from President Wilson.

Pershing Remembers Dead

Secretary Baker then presented General Pershing, who was received with applause that lasted two minutes.

[Pg 302]

"If these compliments and tributes are to continue for long," declared the General, "I am sure that I shall wish that the war had continued. To say that I am happy would be a waste of words. I cannot describe the emotions that fill my heart. You have been very complimentary to me, Mr. Secretary, more complimentary than I deserve. I can only reply by saying that the war was won by the united effort of the nation. The army abroad felt the inspiration that came from the effort of the people at home. The morale of an army is dependent upon the morale of the people behind it; and I am proud to say that the morale of the American people never gave us cause for anything but inspiration.

"On an occasion of this kind we must not forget the fellows who faced a well-trained enemy with only partial training themselves. It is to them we owe the tribute. I hope their graves may be fittingly decorated as an eternal shrine to be visited by Americans in the future as a place where the lesson of patriotism may always be learned anew.

"I wish to take this occasion to thank the people, the President, and you, Mr. Secretary, for the confidence that was placed in me. This confidence made the complex task in France inestimably more easy."

Then came the street procession to City Hall Park, through the "Broadway Canyon."

People were crowded five and six deep on both sides of the street; from hundreds of office windows high in the air there was a veritable snowfall of confetti and torn bits of paper; miles and miles of ticker tape thrown promiscuously

from the same windows became interlaced and tangled in midair, giving the highway the aspect of a street in another, more fantastic world; airplanes glided as low as possible over the thoroughfare; while whistles and automobile horns blew and church bells rang for an hour without intermission.

The crowds unleashed reserves of enthusiasm that had been held in restraint by recent strikes and other sober concerns. "Here comes Pershing!" "Hurrah for Black Jack!" "We're glad to see you back!"

Officially Welcomed By City

At City Hall General Pershing and the members of his staff, who accompanied him on the Leviathan, were officially welcomed by the city. After the addresses of the mayor and the governor they were turned over to a committee of citizens, headed by Rodman Wanamaker. Here the general made his second address since returning from France, and, as before, emphasized what seemed to be his central thought—that he accepts the praise and the adulation for and in the name of those who fought and died.

After the City Hall exercises the procession was resumed, this time on Fifth Avenue.

Arriving at the Waldorf, the general retired for a nap, apologizing, but declaring that he needed rest badly.

A dinner tonight, followed by a theatre party at the Hippodrome, both given by the Rodman Wanamaker committee, ended the day's celebration.

Courtesy The Philadelphia    
"Public Ledger."

[Pg 303]


Long, long ago the original inhabitants of England were driven by their enemies to take refuge in the western mountains, many being forced to cross the water to Ireland. The descendants of these people now live in Cornwall and in Wales and they are quite different from the people of the rest of England. This is a very pleasant retelling of one of their folk tales.

Down by St. Just, not far from Cape Cornwall and the sea, is a small hill, called "The Gump", where the Small People used to hold their revels, and where our grandfathers and grandmothers used to be allowed to stand and look on and listen.

People believed in the Fairies in those days, so the Fairies in return often helped the people, and did them all sorts of kindnesses. Indeed, they would do so now if folks had not grown so learned and disbelieving. It seems strange that because they have got more knowledge of some matters, they should have grown more ignorant of others, and declare that there never were such things as Fairies, just because they have neither eyes nor minds to see them!

Of course, no one could expect the sensitive little creatures to appear when they are sneered at and scoffed at. All the same, though, they are as much about us as ever they were, and if you or I, who do believe in the Little People, were to go to the Gump on the right nights at the right hour, we should see them feasting and dancing and holding their revels just as of old. If, though, you do go, you must be very careful to keep at a distance, and not to trespass on their fairy ground, for that is a great offense.

There was, once upon a time, a grasping mean old fellow who did so, and pretty well he was punished for his daring. It is his story I am going to tell you.

[Pg 304]

Well, this old man used to listen to the tales the people told of the Fairies and their riches, and their wonderful treasures, until he could scarcely bear to hear any more, he longed so to have some of those riches for himself; and at last his covetousness grew so great, that he said to himself he must and would have some, or he should die of vexation.

So one night, when the Harvest Moon was at the full, he started off alone, and very stealthily, to walk to the Gump, for he did not want his neighbors to know anything at all about his plans. He was very nervous, for it is a very desolate spot, but his greed was greater than his fear, and he made himself go forward, though he longed all the time to hurry home to the safe shelter of his house and his bed.

When he was still at some distance from the enchanted spot, strains of the most exquisite music anyone could possibly imagine reached his ear, and as he stood listening it seemed to come nearer and nearer until, at last, it was close about him. The most wonderful part, though, of it all was that there was nothing to be seen, no person, no bird, not an animal even. The empty moor stretched away on every side, the Gump lay bare and desolate before him. The only living being on it that night was himself.

The music, indeed, seemed to come from under the ground, and such strange music it was, too, so gentle, so touching, it made the old miser weep, in spite of himself, and then, even while the tears were still running down his cheeks, he was forced to laugh quite merrily, and even to dance, though he certainly did not want to do either. After that it was not surprising that he found himself marching along, step and step, keeping time with the music as it played first slowly and with stately tread, then fast and lively.

[Pg 305]

All the time, though, that he was laughing and weeping, marching or dancing, his wicked mind was full of thoughts as to how he should get at the fairy treasure.

At last, when he got close to the Gump, the music ceased, and suddenly, with a loud crashing noise which nearly scared the old man out of his senses, the whole hill seemed to open as if by magic, and in one instant every spot was lighted up. Thousands of little lights of all colors gleamed everywhere, silver stars twinkled and sparkled on every furze-bush, tiny lamps hung from every blade of grass. It was a more lovely sight than one ever sees nowadays. Then, out from the open hill marched troops of little Spriggans.

Spriggans, you must know, are the Small People who live in rocks and stones, and cromlechs, the most mischievous, thievish little creatures that ever lived, and woe betide anyone who meddles with their dwelling-places.

Well, first came all those Spriggans, and then a large band of musicians followed by troops of soldiers, each troop carrying a beautiful banner, which waved and streamed out as though a brisk breeze were blowing, whereas in reality there was not a breath of wind stirring.

These hosts of Little People quickly took up their places in perfect order all about the Gump, and, though they appeared quite unconscious of his presence, a great number formed a ring all around the old man. He was greatly amazed, but, "Never mind," he thought, "they are such little whipper-snappers I can easily squash them with my foot if they try on any May-games with me."

As soon as the musicians, the Spriggans, and the soldiers had arranged themselves, out came a lot of servants carrying most lovely gold and silver vessels, goblets, too, cut out of single rubies, and diamonds, and emeralds, and every kind of precious stone. Then came others bearing rich[Pg 306] meats and pastry, luscious fruits and preserves, everything, in fact, that one could think of that was dainty and appetizing. Each servant placed his burden on the tables in its proper place, then silently retired.

Can you not imagine how the glorious scene dazzled the old man, and how his eyes glistened, and his fingers itched to grab at some of the wonderful things and carry them off? He knew that even one only of those flashing goblets would make him rich for ever.

He was just thinking that nowhere in the world could there be a more beautiful sight, when, lo and behold! the illumination became twenty times as brilliant, and out of the hill came thousands and thousands of exquisitely dressed ladies and gentlemen, all in rows, each gentleman leading a lady, and all marching in perfect time and order.

They came in companies of a thousand each, and each company was differently attired. In the first the gentlemen were all dressed in yellow satin covered with copper-colored spangles; on their heads they wore copper-colored helmets with waving, yellow plumes, and on their feet yellow shoes with copper heels. The flashing of the copper in the moonlight was almost blinding. Their companions all were dressed alike in white satin gowns edged with large turquoises, and on their tiny feet pale blue shoes with buckles formed of one large turquoise set in pearls.

The gentlemen conducted the ladies to their places on the Gump, and with a courtly bow left them, themselves retiring to a little distance. The next troop then came up; in this the gentlemen were all attired in black trimmed with silver, silver helmets with black plumes, black stockings and silver shoes. Their ladies were dressed in pink embroidered in gold, with waving pink plumes in their hair, and golden buckles on their pink shoes. In the next troop the[Pg 307] men were dressed in blue and white, and the ladies in green, with diamonds all around the hem of the gown, flashing in their hair, and hanging in long ropes from their necks; on their green shoes single diamonds blazed and flashed.

So they came, troop after troop, more than I can describe, or you could remember, only I must tell you that the last of all were the most lovely. The ladies, all of whom had dark hair, were clad in white velvet lined with the palest violet silk, while round the hems of the skirts and on the bodices were bands of soft white swansdown. Swansdown also edged the little violet cloaks which hung from their shoulders. I cannot describe to you how beautiful they looked, with their rosy, smiling faces, and long black curls. On their heads they wore little silver crowns set with amethysts; amethysts, too, sparkled on their necks and over their gowns. In their hands they carried long trails of the lovely blossom of the wistaria. Their companions were clad in white and green, and in their left hands they carried silver rods with emerald stars at the top.

It really seemed at one time as though the troops of Little People would never cease pouring out of the hill. They did so at last, though, and as soon as all were in their places the music suddenly changed.

The old man by this time seemed able to see more clearly, and hear more distinctly, and his sense of smell grew keener. Never were such flashing gems as here, never had any flowers such scents as these that were here.

There were now thousands of little ladies gathered on the Gump, and these all broke out into song at the same instant. The words were in an unknown tongue, but the song was evidently about some great personages who were about to emerge from the amazing hill, for again it opened, and again poured forth a crowd of Small People.

[Pg 308]

First of all came a bevy of little girls in white gauze, scattering flowers, which as soon as they touched the ground, sprang up into full life and threw out leaves and more flowers, full of exquisite scents; then came a number of boys playing on shells as though they were harps, and making ravishing music, while after them came hundreds and hundreds of little men clad in green and gold, followed by a perfect forest of banners spreading and waving on the air.

Then last, but more beautiful than all that had gone before, was carried a raised platform covered with silk embroidered with real gold, and edged with crystals, and on the platform were seated a prince and princess of such surpassing loveliness that no words can be found to describe them. They were dressed in the richest velvet, and covered with precious stones which blazed and sparkled in the myriad lights until the eye could scarce bear to look at them.

Over her lovely robe the princess's hair flowed down to the floor, where it rested in great shining, golden waves. In her hand she held a golden sceptre, on the top of which blazed a diamond as large as a walnut, while the prince carried one with a sapphire of equal size. After a deal of marching backwards and forwards, the platform was placed on the highest point of the Gump, which was now a hill of flowers, and every fairy walked up and bowed, said something to the prince and princess, and passed on to a seat at the tables.

At length all were seated, whereupon the prince gave a signal, on which a number of footmen came forward carrying a table laden with dainty food in solid gold dishes, and wines in goblets of precious stones which they placed on the platform before the prince and princess. As soon as the royal pair began to eat, all the hosts around them followed their example, and such a merry, jovial meal they had. The[Pg 309] viands disappeared as fast as they could go, laughter and talk sounded on all sides, and never a sign did any of them give that they knew that a human being was watching them.

"Ah!" thought the old miser to himself. "I can't get all I'd like to, but if I could reach up to the prince's table I could get enough at one grab to set me up for life!"

Stooping down, he slowly and stealthily dragged himself nearer and nearer to the table. He felt quite sure that no one could see him. What he himself did not see was that hundreds of wicked little Spriggans had tied ropes on to him and were holding fast to the ends. He crawled and crawled so slowly and carefully that it took him some time to get over the ground, but he managed it at last, and got quite close up to the lovely little pair. Once there he paused for a moment and looked back,—perhaps to see if the way was clear for him to run when he had done what he meant to do. He was rather startled to find that all was as dark as dark could be, and that he could see nothing at all behind him. However, he tried to cheer himself by thinking it was only that his eyes were dazzled by looking at the bright lights so long. He was even more startled, though, when he turned round to the Gump again, to find that every eye of all those hundreds and thousands of fairies on the hill was looking straight into his eyes.

At first he was really frightened, but as they did nothing but look, he told himself that they could not really be gazing at him, and grew braver with the thought. Then slowly bringing up his hat, as a boy does to catch a butterfly, he was just going to bring it down on the silken platform and capture prince and princess, table, gold dishes and all, when hark! A shrill whistle sounded, the old man's hand, with the hat in it, was paralyzed in the air, so that he could[Pg 310] not move it backwards or forwards, and in an instant every light went out, and all was pitchy darkness.

There was a whir-r-r and a buzz, and a whir-r-r, as if a swarm of bees were flying by him, and the old man felt himself fastened so securely to the ground that, do what he would, he could not move an inch, and all the time he felt himself being pinched, and pricked, and tweaked from top to toe, so that not an inch of him was free from torment. He was lying on his back at the foot of the Gump, though how he got there he could never tell. His arms were stretched out and fastened down, so that he could not do anything to drive off his tormentors, his legs were so secured that he could not even relieve himself by kicking, and his tongue was tied with cords, so that he could not call out.

There he lay, no one knows how long, for to him it seemed hours, and no one else but the fairies knew anything about it. At last he felt a lot of little feet running over him, but whose they were he had no idea until something perched on his nose, and by the light of the moon he saw it was a Spriggan. His wicked old heart sank when he realized that he had got into their clutches, for all his life he had heard what wicked little creatures they were.

The little imp on his nose kicked and danced and stamped about in great delight at finding himself perched up so high. We all know how painful it is to have one's nose knocked, even ever so little, so you may imagine that the old miser did not enjoy himself at all. Master Spriggan did, though. He roared with laughter, as though he were having a huge joke, until at last, rising suddenly to his feet and standing on the tips of his tiny toes, he shouted sharply, "Away! away! I smell the day!" and to the old man's great relief off he flew in a great hurry, followed by all[Pg 311] his mischievous little companions who had been playing games, and running races all over their victim's body.

Left at last to himself, the mortified old man lay for some time, thinking over all that had happened, trying to collect his senses, and wondering how he should manage to escape from his bonds, for he might lie there for a week without any human being coming near the place.

Till sunrise he lay there, trying to think of some plan, and then, what do you think he saw? Why, that he had not been tied down by ropes at all, but only by thousands of gossamer webs! And there they were now, all over him, with the dew on them sparkling like the diamonds that the princess had worn the night before. And those dewdrop diamonds were all the jewels he got for his night's work.

When he made this discovery he turned over and groaned and wept with rage and shame, and never, to his dying day, could he bear to look at sparkling gold or gems.

At last, afraid lest he should be missed, and searchers be sent out to look for him, he got up, brushed off the dewy webs, and putting on his battered old hat, crept slowly home. He was wet through with dew, cold, full of rheumatism, and very much ashamed of himself.

Very good care he took to keep that night's experiences to himself. No one must know his shame.

Years after, though, when he had become a changed man, and repented of his former greediness, he let out the story bit by bit to be a lesson to others, until his friends and neighbors, who loved to listen to anything about fairies, had gathered it all as I have told it to you here. And you may be quite sure it is all true, for the old man was not clever enough to invent it.

From "Strange Stories from Cornwall",    
by Mabel Quiller-Couch.

[Pg 312]


Arrange your papers with your name and grade on the first line; place the date and your room or teacher's name on the second line; leave the third line blank, and, beginning with the fourth line, number the lines from 1 to 6. This exercise is to help you read quietly and accurately. See that you understand all the directions in each problem before you attempt to carry them out. On the other hand, work as quickly as you can.

1. If Christopher Columbus lived before George Washington, make a cross on the first line, but if George Washington lived before Columbus, write the word old there.

2. An egg which is not fresh will float in salt water. Out of a dozen eggs seven floated and five sank.

Were there more fresh eggs or more stale eggs in the dozen? Write your answer on the second line.

3."And what is so rare as a day in June?
Then if ever come perfect days."

This is a quotation from a poem by James Russell Lowell. If you think from these lines that the poet prefers June weather to October weather, write the word summer on the third line. If you think he prefers October weather, write the word autumn there.

4. At an army camp in Georgia the flag on the flag-staff at headquarters was blowing toward Washington, D. C.

From what general direction was the wind? Write your answer on the fourth line.

5. All the education of the middle ages was to be found in the monasteries.

From this fact which would you expect to find the better educated, churchmen or soldiers?

6. If pink is lighter than red, and red is lighter than purple, which of these colors is darker than red?

[Pg 313]


You should all begin reading at the same time.

This is a selection that you can read easily. You will have to pay close attention, however, because you will be asked questions about the interesting facts told here.

Your teacher will decide when to have you close your books. Then she will have a contest between the boys and girls or between sections of the class to see which group can answer the questions better.

When we were very young we had a nursery rhyme which told of an old witch who rode away upon a broomstick to sweep the cobwebs from the sky. Of course we understood that it was just a nonsense rhyme. But nowadays when people can really fly up in the air, not on broomsticks but on aeroplanes, it does not seem so nonsensical.

Suppose we agree to take a trip, in our imagination, right away up into the sky till we reach the moon! Of course, we can never hope really to fly to the moon. One reason is that the air goes up only a comparatively short distance. But you can do wonderful things in your imagination! We shall suppose we have a machine that does not require air in which to fly, and that we can live very comfortably in an enclosed cabin attached to this wonderful flying machine.

At what speed are we going to make our machine fly? Some aeroplanes have traveled more than one hundred miles in an hour, but that speed will be far too slow for us because we have such great distances to go.

Flying at one hundred miles per hour, we should not reach the moon for three months. And the moon is our nearest neighbor in space. The sun is four hundred times as far away as the moon, so it would take us a hundred years to[Pg 314] reach the sun. And even this far-distant sun seems a near neighbor when we think of the distance from us to the fixed stars. To reach the nearest of the stars it would take us millions of years. I am not going to ask you to imagine yourself living for millions of years, shut up in the cabin of our flying machine. It is quite evident that we must increase the speed of our machine. Suppose we make it go as fast as a ray of light can travel! How fast is that?

The speed of light is so great than any race we set for it on this earth seems no time at all. You know that it takes us several months to travel round this world in a steamer. Of course we could go far faster in a flying machine. But even if we could keep flying all the time at one hundred miles per hour, it would take us ten days.

Suppose now that it were possible to send a ray of light on this same journey around the world. It would have traveled right round before you could count "one". Indeed it could travel five hundred times round the world in one minute. That may help to give you some vague sort of idea of the speed at which our flying machine is to travel.

Even at this unthinkable speed, it would take us about four years to reach the nearest star. Does it really take light several years to travel from a star to us? It does; it takes light hundreds of years to reach us from some of the distant stars. If one of these far-distant stars should disappear suddenly, you and I would know nothing about the change. When we looked up into the sky we should still see the star shining away year after year. Our children and our grandchildren would still believe the star to be where it had been always, for the last rays of light, sent out by the star before it disappeared, would take hundreds of years to reach this world. There is no hope of our ever reaching these very distant stars in our imaginary flying machine;[Pg 315] it would be too big a tax on our imagination to live in the cabin of our machine for hundreds of years.

For the present we shall be content with a trip to the moon. But one boy says that he cannot imagine our flying machine forcing its way through the air at the enormous speed at which light travels. Even when traveling by motor car, at the comparative snail-pace of, say, forty miles per hour, we have to see that hats and veils are well fastened on. This boy says that he has been told that a good deal of the additional energy required to drive a train at sixty miles an hour is used up in forcing the train through the ocean of air.

We quite agree with this boy that it would be very difficult to imagine our machine traveling through the air at the speed of light. We shall get over this difficulty by making our machine not exceed one hundred miles per hour so long as we are in the ocean of air. When we get beyond this great blanket of air, we can increase our speed to that of light.

I am very glad that we have come to this arrangement, for I had just been thinking that our journey to the moon would be a very disappointing one, as it would have taken only about one second to get there. Now our journey will be much slower and we shall have time to look about us.

When we emerge from the misty clouds we cannot see the instruments for the moisture on the window. By the time it clears we are about two miles upwards off the earth. We find that the temperature has fallen down below freezing-point. We are rather surprised, as it looks lovely and warm in the sunshine. The moment we shoot above the clouds we are in the sunshine, with the sea of clouds below us. Our thermometer is placed in the shade, so that the direct rays of the sun cannot reach it, as we wish to know the temperature of the surrounding air.

[Pg 316]

The reason why it is colder here than down on the surface of the earth is that we have climbed out of the thickest part of the great blanket of air which serves to keep you warm. The air is what you might describe as much thicker near the earth, but, to speak more correctly, we should say that the air is much denser at the surface of the earth. Up here it is much flimsier. One girl says that she climbed a high mountain with her father, on a beautiful summer day, and it was so cold on the top of the mountain they could not stay there many minutes.

We keep rushing upwards and in half an hour we know that we must be about fifty miles from the earth, as we have been traveling at the rate of one hundred miles per hour. The air at this height is so rare that we could not possibly live in it. It is a good thing that we are in an enclosed cabin, and have plenty of fresh air in liquid form, which gives off ordinary air just at the rate we require it.

We know that in about an hour and a half we should be clear of the atmosphere altogether, and that we may travel thereafter at the speed of light, which means about eleven million miles per minute.

One little girl says she is feeling very sleepy, and as she was too excited to sleep much last night, I advise her to lie down and have a sleep now; we shall waken her when we arrive at the moon.

Imagine then that we have arrived at the moon. It looks like our own world, "the earth," only there is nothing growing on it; it seems to be all bare rocks. But the mountains look very high; some of them are really higher than the highest mountains on the earth.

Most of the children in our cabin say that they thought the moon was quite smooth, and had a sort of polished surface. When they were told that the moon did not[Pg 317] send out light, but merely reflected the light of the sun, they pictured some sort of mirror-like surface.

We are startled by a sudden cry of surprise behind us; the little girl who was sleeping has wakened up, and looking out of the window behind us, she calls: "Oh! look how huge the moon has grown! It is far, far bigger than the sun!"

Looking out at her window, we see what does look like a giant moon. But our little friend is very much surprised when I tell her that that is old Mother Earth, and that the rocky mountains close to us are part of the moon. But how can the earth shine like the moon? In exactly the same way as the moon shines; both merely reflect the light sent out by the sun.

We can scarcely believe that this "huge half-moon", standing out so clearly against a jet-black sky, is really the earth which we left a few hours ago in broad daylight. But the people on the part of it which we speak of as shining like the moon are still in broad daylight. Those people living on the half of the great globe which appears dark to us are in darkness except for the light which is reaching them from this moon up here where we are at present.

One boy says that some of the astronomers on the earth may be looking at us through their telescopes, and he starts making Boy Scout signals with his arms. He is disappointed when I tell him that the very best telescope on earth would not enable the astronomers to see our flying machine even as a speck on the face of the moon. If our machine had been as big as one of our largest buildings, it could then have been seen as a tiny dot.

But we cannot help staring at that great ball on which we live, and which we left so recently. This distant view gives us a good idea of how much bigger the earth is than the moon. Of course if you look down at the moon at[Pg 318] present you can get no idea of its size; you can see only a small part of it, just as you could see only a small part of the earth until you made this imaginary voyage skywards. But you can remember what the moon looked like when you saw it from the earth.

Looking back now at the far-distant earth, you would say that it was much more than four times the size of the moon. When we are comparing the sizes of the earth and the moon, and the other heavenly bodies, it is usual to speak of their diameters. The word diameter is made out of two Greek words which mean a measure through. The diameter of the moon or of the earth is just the distance right through the center from one side to the other. We say that the diameter of the earth is four times as great as the diameter of the moon, but the earth could contain sixty-four moons.

Suppose we take a quiet cruise about the moon in our imaginary flying machine. One boy remarks that he is glad it is a fine day, for, although we cannot leave the cabin of our flying machine, we can see much better on a fine day. Another boy says he guesses that if we were to stay here for a hundred years it would be fine every day. He is quite right. There are no clouds around the moon, and so there cannot be any rain.

When we looked at the moon from the earth, the moon's surface seemed to be beautifully smooth, but now that we have traveled to it in our flying machine we find it to be anything but smooth. It seems to be covered entirely with high mountains, and great rings of mountains. One boy says that those large basins formed by the rings of mountains remind him of some mountains that he saw on the earth, and that he was told the mountains had formed the crater of a great volcano in the long ago.

[Pg 319]

But what is a volcano? Although a volcano is described often as a burning mountain, it is not really burning, but it has a large chimney in the center of it reaching far down into the earth. Great quantities of molten rock-material are hurled up this chimney while the volcano is active. There are a few active volcanoes on the earth today, but there are traces of very many more that have long ceased to be active.

One boy hopes that we may find an active volcano as we cruise around the moon, but he will be disappointed. The moon is no longer a hot body like the earth, and the earth used to be very much hotter than at present, when there were a great many volcanoes at work.

Looking at the moon, we can see that it must have been very hot at one time also; it seems so covered with volcanic mountains that one ring sometimes overlaps another.

But what is this huge dark-colored part of the moon? One boy guesses that it is a sea or a lake, and when I tell him that there is no water on the moon he is very much surprised. He says that there must have been water at one time, for he has seen a map of the moon, and it contained a lot of Latin names which his tutor told him meant the Sea of Rains, the Sea of Tranquillity, the Lake of Dreams, and so on.

No doubt the map which the boy saw was quite a correct map of the moon, for we speak of those dark patches as seas and lakes, although we know now that no water exists, and probably never existed, on the moon.

It is those great dark patches on the moon which seem to form the man's face; this dark patch which we are coming to is the one which forms his right eye. It is called the Sea of Rains.

How bright the mountains look in the sunshine, and how[Pg 320] black their shadows are. That is because there is no air. Notice how very clearly you can see the far-distant mountain ranges. You can scarcely believe me when I tell you that the mountains on either side of that great crater are more than one hundred miles apart. But do you not remember how the mountains on the earth have appeared to us sometimes to be very much nearer than usual? If you asked the reason for this, you were told that it was because the atmosphere happened to be particularly clear. Well! here on the moon we have no air at all and that is why we can see everything so very clearly.

One little girl says that she had been wondering why there is nothing growing on the moon, but now she sees that not even grass, nor moss, nor heather could grow, since there is no air and no water. Not only are the mountains bare rock, but the whole surface of the land is the same.

From "The Stars and Their Mysteries",    
by Charles R. Gibson, F.R.S.E.


1. Why can no aeroplane ever fly to the moon?

2. How long would it take an aeroplane flying 100 miles an hour to reach the moon?

3. How much farther away is the sun than the moon?

4. Give some idea how far away the fixed stars are.

5. Why is it colder as we rise up in the air?

6. What does the surface of the moon look like?

7. How would the earth look to a person on the moon?

8. How much larger is the earth than the moon?

9. What is the weather on the moon?

10. What is a volcano?

11. Why could you see a long distance on the moon?

12. Why does nothing grow on the moon?

Transcriber's Notes: