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Catholic National Readers, Book Four
The object of oral reading is to make others understand fully and clearly the ideas intended to be conveyed by the writer.
In order to do this, the reader himself must comprehend the subject, and enter into the feelings and sentiments of the writer.
Good reading depends in a great measure on distinct Articulation, correct Accentuation, and natural Expression.
While Articulation and Accent affect each word separately, the relative importance of particular words in sentences, and of sentences as a whole, is made apparent by the Expression, which embraces Emphasis, Inflection, Modulation, and Pauses.
To read with the Expression appropriate and natural to the sense, the pitch of the voice should be neither too high nor too low, but be in that key which will render the reader's voice as effective as possible.
Suggestions to the Teacher
I. The Vocabularies.—These may be spelled and defined orally in class; but whether or not so spelled, they should be dictated to the class, to be copied by them, and afterwards corrected. The words should be copied with the proper diacritical marks, as this practice will enable the class to read these characters readily.
II. The Sentence-work.—Under this head the teacher should require the pupil to copy from the lesson examples of the different kinds of sentences; to change interrogative into declarative sentences, and vice versa; to construct new sentences.
III. Classifying Words.—As an exercise under this head, the pupil should be required to select from the lesson, and copy a certain number of nouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs.
IV. Changing Word-forms.—Require the pupil to write the plurals of nouns, the tenses of verbs, and the different degrees of adjectives.
V. Synonyms.—The exercise requiring synonyms for words in the lesson should be frequently used.
VI. Changing Verse into Prose.—This is an interesting and valuable exercise, but to be of real benefit to the pupil the work must be examined and criticized by the teacher.
In all Written exercises, particular attention should be exacted in spelling, capitalizing, punctuation, and paragraphing, as well as in the neatness of the work.
If the teacher will carefully carry our the work indicated, he will be well rewarded by the mental growth of his pupils.
1. A Guard of Honor
1. Heärth; n. the floor of a fireplace; the house, as the seat of comfort.
3. Con-fu’sion; n. want of order.
6. Crim’son; adj. a deep red color.
6. Pres’ent-ly; adv. After a little time; by and by.
6. Trïck’ling; v. flowing in a small stream.
8. Re-light’; v. light again.
8. Swash; n. a dashing of water.
9. Sub-side’; v. to settle into a state of quiet.
10. Con’se-crat-ed; adj. sacred.
To the Teacher.—The first definition gives the sense in which the word is used in the Lesson. The numbers preceding the words defined refer to the paragraphs in which they occur.
A Guard of Honor.
Pronunciation.—Hearth is pronounced Härth, not hurth. Say com’fort-a-ble, not com-fort’a-ble. The t in nestled is not sounded. Say a-fraid’, not ‘fraid; presently, not pres’en-ly. Be careful to sound the t in crept. Aisle is pronounced il.
1. The Rhine had risen, and flooded a little village on its banks. It was a sad sight. Cheerful homes were suddenly broken up. The comfortable hearth was made cold and wet by the rushing waters. People might be seen in all directions, running, carrying children, clothes, furniture; and many poor families saw all they possessed destroyed by the waters.
2. To make matters worse, Father Jasper, the parish priest, on the night before the flood, had been obliged to go far across the country to visit a dying man, and was unable to get back to his flock, who were in great need of his advice and consolation.
3. In the confusion, many children were separated from their parents, and among them little Claus. But he was not missed, as his father thought him safe with some of the neighbors.
4. The village church, which stood on higher ground, was the only building not yet buried out of sight by the food. But the water was slowly yet surely making its way up, and the people thought with sorrow of the beautiful Stations of the Cross, and of the new altar, which, in all probability, would be ruined. But no one seemed to remember that Father Jasper alone had the key of the tabernacle.
5. Little Claus thought of it, however. “Surely,” he said to himself, “some one ought to watch in the church until Father Jasper can come to take our dear Lord away. It is not right that He who loves us so much should be left there all alone.” And so this thoughtful little boy made his way to the church. The steps were already under water, but he splashed through, crept inside, and nestled close up to the railing of the sanctuary.
6. It was growing dark, but Claus was not a bit afraid. A glow of rich crimson fell on him from the cloak of St. Joseph in the stained-glass window, and the dear St. Nicholas seemed as if blessing him. The shouts and cries outside told him that the river was rising higher, and presently the water came silently trickling over the floor of the church, and Claus crept inside the sanctuary. Then the noise without grew louder, the high doors of the church were burst open by floating timber and Claus could see before him the ever-moving water and the twinkling of far-off lights.
7. But it never occurred to Claus that he might die there. In fact, he did not think of what might happen. He was there, and it was his duty to stay there. He could not leave the Blessed Sacrament alone. As it grew darker, the water rose higher, until it reached the fourth step of the pulpit stair, and Claus was driven to the highest altar step.
8. The brave little fellow wondered why Father Jasper did not come. If he did not come soon, the water would put out the red light of the sanctuary lamp,—but “no,” Claus said to himself, “that would not happen. If such a thing were possible, the angels themselves would relight it.” Claus took out his rosary and began his prayers. Why did everyone leave Our Lord in the darkness? Why was he alone? Why —the flaxen head dropped lower and lower, until it sank against the white and gold corner of the altar, and all was silent except the swash of the water over the marble floor and against the walls.
9. In the meantime, Father Jasper had reached the hill where his villagers were collected. There was much grief there, and Claus’s parents were more sorrowful than the rest, for their little boy was missing. The flood had begun to subside some hours before, and the good priest, after speaking a few words of comfort and hope, made his way in a boat to the church. The water was going down; he waded up the center aisle to the high altar, and thanked God in his heart that the red light still burned.
10. He mounted the altar-steps and opened the tabernacle. He turned with the Blessed Sacrament safe in his consecrated hands, and was about to go down to leave the church, when the light from the big Paschal candle, which he had lighted for want of something else, fell on a little figure leaning against the corner of the altar.
11. Father Jasper uttered an exclamation of surprise and stooped down. As he did so, the boy opened his eyes. “Oh, father!” he exclaimed, “I have waited for you so long. I was afraid our dear Lord would be lonely.”—”And so you formed yourself into a guard of honor for His protection,” said the priest. “Be sure He will not forget it, my child; and as you have watched over Him, so may He watch over you.”
In this and similar Lessons the number in parenthesis refers to the paragraph or stanza in which the word, sentence, or expression occurs.
Explain the expressions: “buried out of sight” (4); “nestled close” (5); “the swash of the water” (8); “Paschal candle” (10); “uttered and exclamation of surprise” (11); “guard of honor” (11).
What other words could be used instead of “possessed” (1); “consolation” (2); “ruined” (4); “thoughtful” (5); “splashed” (5); “glow” (6); “timber” (6); “twinkling” (6); “occurred” (7); “flaxen” (8); “collected” (9); “grief” (9)?
2. A Little Heroine
1. Am-mu-ni’tion; n. military stores; powder, balls, etc.
2. Pa-trolled’; v. marched about as a guard.
3. To’ries; n. those who were in favor of the British Government.
5. Res’I-dence; n. dwelling house.
7. Gos’sips; v. talks idly; chats.
9. Tank’ards; n. large drinking vessels.
9. Dam’ask; adj. a very fine material composed of silk, flax and cotton.
10. Snug’gled; v. crept up close.
A Little Heroine.
Pronunciation.—Say sol’diers (Sol’jurs), not so’jers; kitch’en, not kitch’ing; eas’i-ly, not easily; chi’na, not chinee; I-de’a, not I-dee’, or I-de’ar.
1. For some months before the fight at Concord, which was the first great battle of the Revolution, the people of that place were in a state of great excitement. Groups of grave-faced men gathered every day around the tavern stoop, and there was little work done in the fields. The British were then occupying Boston, and it was rumored that they were on their way to destroy the powder, ammunition, and provisions that were stored in Concord for safe keeping.
2. In nearly every house something valuable was hidden, and every precaution was taken against the enemy. A morning gun was fired, a guard of ten men patrolled the town at night, and the brave farmers made ready for the struggle which they felt must come. 3. Much caution was necessary in making plans, for there were Tories in the place, ever ready to give the enemy all the information they could gather. Pass-words were, secret signals used, messages sent from house to house in all sorts of queer ways.
4. It was just such a message that lay hidden under the eggs in the basket which little Tabitha Tarbell carried on her arm as she tripped along the country road. Her uncle had an important communication for Squire Hosmer at the other end of the town, and as Tabitha was a brave, active, quick-witted, and patriotic girl she was entrusted with it.
5. She had gone more than half-way, when two strangers overtook her and inquired for the residence of Farmer Bliss. Her heart gave a big thump at this, for Bliss. Her heart gave a big thump at this, for Bliss was a well-known Tory. But she showed no alarm beyond the modest blush in her cheek, and gave them the desired information, for which they thanked her and hurried on.
6. There was something in the walk and manner of the two men that told they were soldiers, and by their accent she knew they were British. As soon as they disappeared over the hill Tabitha made all haste to reach her destination, where she at once made known to Squire Hosmer that two suspicious strangers were on their way to Farmer Bliss’ house.
7. How to find out the strangers’ errand was an important question. “I have it,” said Mrs. Hosmer. “I’ll just send these eggs over to Mrs. Bliss by Tabitha, as soon as I can slip another dress on the child, and while she rests and gossips there, she can keep her ears and eyes open and learn all she can.”
8. When Tabitha reached the house she found great preparations for a feast going on. She delivered the eggs, which were thankfully received; but when she offered to help them as they were so busy, Mrs. Bliss told they could get along very well by themselves and she would only be in the way, and so Tabitha was gently but firmly pushed out of the kitchen.
9. The little girl’s cheeks and ears tingled with vexation, but she was a determined child. She had come to find out what she could, and she did not intend to be put off easily. As she passed the front of the house she noticed that a window stood open. Approaching carefully, she peeped in and saw a table set for four persons. It was gay with silver tankards and fine china, while a fine damask tablecloth reached to the floor.
10. As she looked, an idea popped into Tabitha’s wise little head. Why couldn’t she hide under the table and hear all that was said? To think was to act, and the next moment she climbed through the low window and crept under the table. She was all alone, with the exception of the cat, which rubbed against her and then snuggle down on her dress to sleep.
Explain the Expressions: “made ready for the struggle” (2) ; “passwords” (3) ; “tripped along” (4) ; “important communication” (4); “quick-witted” (4) ; “her heart gave a big thump” (5) ; “I have it” (7); “put off” (9) ; “gay with silver tankards” (9).
What other words could be used instead of “rumored” (1) ; “precaution” (2) ; “adopted” (3) ; “patriotic” (4) ; “entrusted” (4) ; “accent” (6) ; “destination” (6) ; “vexation” (9)?
1. Guests; n. visitors entertained for a short time.
2. Loy’al-ty; n. fidelity ; duty to a superior.
3. Im’pha-size; v. to give force to.
3. Mere’ly; adv. simply ; only.
5. Speed’i-er; adv. more quickly.
6. Min’ute-men; n. men ready to march at a moment’s (minute’s) notice.
A Little Heroine. Concluded.
1. Tabitha had been there but a short time when Bliss and his wife entered with their guests. By his voice, the girl recognized one of the latter as the man who spoke to her on the road. For a while there was little talking, as all were busy with the dinner; but when, at last, Mrs. Bliss rose from the table and left the room, the men began to discuss business.
2. Tabitha learned that the strangers were British officers, come to find out where the supplies were kept, and how the place was protected. Bliss gave them all the information in his power, but complained that his life was in danger on account of his loyalty. The Englishmen urged him to go with them, promising to protect him, as they were armed, and no one knew of their presence in the place except a stupid little girl whom they met on the road.
3. The “stupid little girl” nearly laughed out at this, but just then one of the men, to emphasize a remark, brought his heel down heavily on poor Tabitha’s hand, as she leaned forward to catch every word. The dear child was faint with pain ; but, little heroine that she was, she merely bit her lips and uttered not a sound.
4. Another time she was nearly discovered, for as the men were preparing to leave, she gave a little, sudden sneeze. “There’s someone under the table,” cried one officer; but just as he seized the corner of the cloth to lift it, the cat rose and walked out, purring loudly, an the company, laughing at what they considered his mistake, left the room.
5. After some delay the men left the house, and at the first opportunity Tabitha crept from her hiding-place, and ran off as fast as her stiff limbs would carry her. But before she could reach the Hosmers’ house and tell what she had heard, the spies, with the Tory informer, were well on their way, as Bliss provided horses so that his own flight might b e the speedier.
6. But the warning was given, and Tabitha received great praise for her hour under the table. The towns-people hastened their preparations, and had time to remove their most valuable stores to neighboring towns, to mount their cannon and drill their minute-men; for these resolute farmers meant to resist oppression. How well they did, history tells.
Explain the expressions: “discuss business” (1); “faint with pain” (3); “Tory informer” (5); “well on their way” (5); “hastened their preparations” (6).
What other words could be used instead of “recognized” (1); “latter” (1); “uttered” (3); “purring” (4); “opportunity” (5); “stores” (6); “resolute” (6)?
3. The Open Door
2. Ra’vens, n. birds of a black color, larger than crows.
2. Proph’et; n. a person inspired by God to speak in His name.
3. Ope; adj. open.
3. Radiance; n. brightness; the quality of issuing in beams or rays.
6. Heärk’ened; v. listened; heeded; paid attention to.
The Open Door.
1. Within a town of Holland once
A widow dwelt; ‘tis said,
So poor, alas! Her children asked in
One night in vain for bread.
But this poor woman loved the Lord,
And knew that He was good,
So with her little ones around,
She prayed to Him for food.
2. When prayer was done, her eldest child,
A boy of eight years old,
Said softly, “In the Holy Book,
Dear mother, we are told
How God, with food by ravens brought,
Supplied His prophet’s need.”
“Yes,” answered she; “but that, my son,
Was long ago, indeed.”
3. “But, mother, God may do again
What He has done before;
And so, to let the birds fly in,
I will unclose the door.”
Then little Dick, in simple faith,
Threw open the door full wide,
So that the radiance of the lamp
Fell on the path outside.
4. Ere long the burgomaster passed,
And noticing the light,
Paused to inquire why the door
Was open so at night.
“My little Dick has done it, sir,”
The widow, smiling, said,
“That ravens might fly in to bring
My hungry children bread.”
5. “Indeed!” the burgomaster cried;
“Then here’s a raven, lad;
Come to my home, and you shall see
Where bread may soon be had.”
Along the street to his own house
He quickly led the boy,
And sent him back with food that filled
His humble home with joy.
6. The supper ended, little Dick
Went to the open door,
Looked up, said, “Many thanks, dear Lord!”
Then shut it fast once more.
For though no bird had entered in,
He knew that God on high,
Had hearkened to his mother’s prayer,
And sent this full supply.
4. The Locusts
1. In-te’ri-or; n. the inland part of a country; inside.
1. Dun’-col-ored; a. a dull brown.
2. Phe-nom’e-non; n. an unusual appearance.
Con-fla-gra’tion; n. a great fire.
2. Fore’run-ner; n. something sent before.
3. A-vid’I-ty; n. eagerness.
4. Maize; n. Indian corn.
5. Ho-ri’zon; n. the point where the earth and sky seem to meet.
7. Tor’pid; a. without the power of motion; dull.
8. Myr’I-ads; n. great numbers.
9. E-clipsed’; v. darkened.
Pronunciation.—Say fields, not fiels; veg’ e-table, not veg’ta-ble or veg-e-at’ble; sin’gu lar, not sin’glar. Be careful to pronounce the g distinctly in words ending in ing.
1. Hendrik Von Bloom, one of the Dutch settlers of Cape Colony, in Africa, had removed to the interior, among the Bushmen. Here he had a farm, covered with promising crops. One day, while he was in the field, he saw along the lower part of the sky what appeared to be a dun-colored mist or smoke, as if the plain at a great distance was on fire. Could that be so? Had some one fired the bushes? Or was it a cloud of dust?
2. He continued to gaze at the strange phenomenon, which seemed to be rising higher in the sky—now resembling dust, now like the smoke of a wide-spreading conflagration , and now like a reddish cloud. It was in the west, and already the setting sun was obscured by it. It had passed over the sun’s disk like a screen, and his light no longer fell upon the plain. Was it the forerunner of some terrible storm?
3. All at once the dark-red mass seemed to develop the cattle upon the plain, and they could be seen running to and fro, as if affrighted. The voice of Swartboy, a Bushman who lived with Von Bloom, could now be heard crying out, “The locusts! The locusts! The locusts!” Swartboy knew them well. Although he announced their approach in a state of great excitement, it was the excitement of joy; for the bushmen eat the locusts with the greatest avidity.
4. The children laughed, clapped their hands, and waited with curiosity until the locusts should come nearer. All had heard of locusts to know that they were only grasshoppers, which neither bite nor sting. Even Von Bloom himself was at first very little concerned about them. But suddenly his eye rested upon his fields of maize and buckwheat, upon his garden of melons and fruits and vegetables. A new alarm seized him. All his crops were threatened with utter destruction.
5. He stood watching the flight with painful emotions. But as the swarm was full half a mile distant, and appeared to be coming no nearer, he still had some hope. His countenance grew brighter. The children noticed this, and were glad, but said nothing. All stood silently watching. The swarm kept extending to the south; in fact, it now stretched along the whole western horizon, and was gradually getting lower down; that is, its upper edge was sinking in the heavens.
6. Were the locusts passing off to the west? No. “They are going to roost for the night. Now we will get them in bagfuls,” said Swartboy, with a pleased look. The sun had set the cool breeze weakened the wings of the insect travelers, and they were compelled to halt for the night upon the trees, bushes, and grass. In a few minutes the dark mist that had hidden the blue rim of the sky was seen no more; but the distant plain looked as if a fire had swept over it.
7. Von Bloom and his companions then went to take a nearer view. On approaching the locusts they beheld a singular sight. The ground was covered with these reddish-brown creatures, in some spots to the depth of several inches. On the low spots to the depth of several inches. On the low bushes they were clustered on the leaves and braches, like swarms of bees. Not a leaf or blade of grass that was not covered with them. They moved not, but remained as if torpid or asleep. The heavy dews loaded their wings, and the cold of the evening had deprived them of the power of flight.
8. Von Bloom slept but little that night. Anxiety kept him awake. When the first ray of light appeared he rushed out. A strong breeze was blowing from the west! H had no longer any hope of escaping the terrible visitation. Half an hour afterwards the sun rose in African splendor, and its hot rays warmed the host of locusts into life and activity. They began to crawl about; and then, as if by one impulse, myriads rose in the air. The breeze drove them in the direction of the devoted fields.
9. In a few minutes they were dropping by tens of thousands upon the fields. Slow was their flight, and gentle their descent; and they presented the appearance of a shower of black snow falling in large, feathery flakes. Soon the ground was completely covered; every stalk of maize, every plant and bush, carried its hundreds. The great flight having now passed eastward of the house, the sun was again hidden by them, as if eclipsed.
10. At the end of two hours Von Bloom looked forth. The thickest of the flight had passed. The sun was again shining—but on what? No longer on green fields and a flowery garden, around the house, on ever side was black desolation. Not a blade of grass, not a leaf, could be seen. The very bark was stripped from the trees, which now stood as if withered by the hand of God! A fire sweeping the ground could not have left it more naked and desolate. His house stood in the midst of a desert.
Explain the expressions: “passed over the sun’s disk like a screen” (2); “a new alarm seized him”(4); “with painful emotions” (5); “as if a fire had swept over it” (6); “by one impulse” (8); “the devoted fields” (8).
What other words could be used for “promising” (1); “envelope” (3); “concerned” (4); “singular”(7); “deprived” (7); descent” (9); “withered” (10)?
5. Little by Little
1. Rent; n. break; tear
2. Ef’forts; n. attempts; trials.
2. A-chieved’; v. done; finished.
3. Dis-heartened; v. without hope; sad.
3. En-deav’or; v. try.
3. Plain; n. level land; an open field with an even surface.
4. Prov’erb; n. an old and common saying.
Little by Little.
Pronunciation.—Say mount’ain, not mount’ing. Made rhymes with laid; do with through.
1. One step and then another,
And the longest walk is ended;
One stitch and then another,
And the largest rent is mended;
One brick upon another,
And the highest wall is made;
One flake upon another,
And the deepest snow is laid.
2. So the little coral-workers,
By their slow but constant motion,
Have built those pretty islands
In the distant dark-blue ocean;
And the noblest undertakings
Man’s wisdom hath conceived,
By oft-repeated efforts
Have been patiently achieved.
3. Then do not look disheartened
O’er the work you have to do,
And say that such a mighty task
You never can get through;
But just endeavor day by day
Another point to gain,
And soon the mountain which you feared will prove to be a plain.
4. “Rome was not built in a day,”
The ancient proverb teaches;
And Nature, by her trees and flowers,
The same sweet sermon preaches.
Think not of far-off duties,
But of duties which are near;
And having once begun to work,
Resolve to persevere.
Tell the substance of the poem in your own words.
6. The Barber of Baghdad
1. Ca’liph; n. a title given by the Turks to a supreme ruler.
2. In’so-lent; adj. rude; insulting.
6. Ca’di; n. a Turkish judge.
6. Pat’ron-ized; v. helped by his custom.
7. Scribe; n. a public writer.
9. Eq’ui-ty; n. justice; fairness.
10. O-bei’sance; n. bow.
13. De-grade’; v. lower.
17. Jeered; v. made fun of.
The Barber of Bagdad.
Pronunciation.—Say stead’y, not stid’dy. Be careful to sound the g in length. Say just, not jist; asked, not ast; law, now lawr.
1. In the reign of the great caliph, there lived in the city of Bagdad a celebrated barber, of the name of Ali.
2. He was famous for a steady hand, and could shave a head, or trim a beard or whiskers, with his eyes blindfolded. There was not a man of fashion at Bagdad who did not employ him; and such a run of business had he, that at length he became very proud and insolent.
3. Firewood was always scarce and dear at Bagdad; and it happened one day, that a poor wood-cutter, ignorant of the character of Ali, stopped at his shop, to sell him a load of wood which he had just brought from a distance. Ali offered him a certain sum for all the wood that was upon the donkey. The wood-cutter agreed, unloaded his beast, and asked for the money.
4. “You have not given me all the wood yet,” said the barber. “I must have your wooden packsaddle into the bargain, that was our agreement.”—“How!” said the other in great amazement ; “who ever heard of such a bargain? It is impossible!”
5. But after many words the overbearing barber seized the pack-saddle, wood and all, and sent away the poor peasant.
6. The wood-cutter went to the cadi, and stated his grief’s; the cadi was one of the barber’s customers, and refused to hear the case. Then he went to a higher judge; he also patronized Ali, and made light of the complaint.
7. The poor wood-cutter was not disheartened, but got a scribe to write a petition to the caliph himself. The caliph read the petition, and it was not long before the wood-cutter was called to his presence.
8. When he approached the caliph, he knelt and kissed the ground; and then, folding his arms before him, awaited the decision of his case.
9. “Friend,” said the caliph, “the barber has words on his side; you have equity on yours. The law must be defined by words, and agreements must be made by words. The law must have its course, or it is nothing; and the agreements must be kept, or there would be no good faith between man and man. Therefore the barber must keep the wood, but”——
10. Then calling the wood-cutter close to him, the caliph whispered something in his ear, and sent him away quite satisfied. The wood-cutter, having made his obeisance, took his donkey by its halter, and returned home.
11. A few days after he applied to the barber, as if nothing had happened, requesting that he, and a companion of his from the country, might be shaved. The price for which both operations were to be performed was settled.
12. When the wood-cutter’s beard had been properly shaved, Ali asked where his companion was. “He is standing outside,” said the wood-cutter; “he shall come in at once.” Accordingly he went out, and led in his donkey. “This is my companion,” said he; “shave him.”
13. “Shave him!” exclaimed the barber, in a rage. “Is it not enough that I should degrade myself by touching you, but you must insult me by asking me to shave your donkey? Away with you!”
14. The wood-cutter immediately went to the caliph and related his case. “Bring Ali and his razors to me this instant,” exclaimed the caliph to one of his officers; and in a few minutes the barber stood before him.
15. “Why do you refuse to shave this man’s companion?” said the caliph to the barber; “was not that your agreement?” Ali, kissing the ground answered: “It is true, O caliph, that such was our agreement; but who ever made a companion of a donkey?”
16. “True enough,” said the caliph; “but who ever thought of insisting upon a pack-saddle being included in a load of wood? No, no; it is the wood-cutter’s turn now. Shave his donkey!”
17. So the barber was compelled to lather the beast from head to foot, and to shave him in the presence of the caliph, and of the whole court, whilst he was jeered at and mocked by the bystanders.
18. The poor wood-cutter was then dismissed with a present of money; and all Bagdad resounded with the story, and praised the justice of the caliph.
Explain the expressions: “run of business” (2); “in great amazement” (4); “made light of” (6); “called to his presence” (7); “have its course” (9).
What other words could be used instead of “overbearing” (5); “disheartened” (7); “defined” (9); “applied” (11); “requesting” (11); “related” (14); “exclaimed” (14); “insisting” (16)?
Who was Ali? For what was he famous? Describe his character. Tell the manner in which he imposed on the wood-cutter.
Why would not the cadi listen to the wood-cutter’s complaint? Tell how the poor man managed to obtain an interview with the caliph, and what was result of the interview.
What bargain did the wood-cutter make with Ali? How was the insolent Barber punished for his injustice?
7. A Noble Woman
1. Dis-tin’guished; adj. noted.
2. Sur-ren’dered; v. gave up.
2. Cit’i-zens; n. those who dwell in a city.
2. Dis-mayed’; v. frightened.
4. Re-tired’; v. withdrawn.
5. Neigh’bor - hoods; n. places near by.
7. Dread; adj. terrible; awful.
7. State’ly; adj. grand.
A Noble Woman.
Pronunciation.—Be careful to sound the t in acts; say nar’ row, not nar’ rer; creat’ ure, not crit’ ter; ob’ject, not ob’ jeck.
1. Of all the English queens, none was so distinguished for piety and virtue as Philippa, the wife of King Edward III. Her acts of charity and justice shed more glory on the English name than the victories of her husband.
2. When the town of Calais, in France, surrendered to the English monarch, Edward demanded that six of its principle citizens be given up for execution. The people were dismayed at this, but one of them, Eustace St. Pierre (Yew-stace San Pee-air), at once offered himself, and was soon joined by five others, among them his son.
3. About this time, Queen Philippa arrived at the head of an army, with which she was hurrying to her husband’s aid. Hearing of the brave men then on their way to the place of execution, she was moved with pity, and prayed the king to earnestly to release them, that he relented of his anger and set them free. The queen then loaded them with presents, and did all she could for the suffering people of Calais. “Ah, my country!” exclaimed St. Pierre; “now I tremble for you; Edward only wins our cities, but Philippa conquers our hearts.”
4. On another occasion, Philippa had retired to rest after a day of labor, when suddenly she seemed to hear a voice calling her. The night was dark and stormy, and the queen was tired. What wonder, then, that she tried to close her ears to the cry? But it was useless; and believing it to be a call from heaven, she arose and went out, accompanied by two of her ladies.
5. Through narrow streets and poor neighborhoods the queen hurried in the direction whence came the cry which she seemed yet to hear. More that once she turned aside to look at some suffering creature, but not finding the object of her search, continued on. At last the wailing of a child reached her, and in a dark and dirty alley she came upon a weeping woman, bending over a basket in which lay a tiny babe.
6. Tenderly wrapping the infant in her cloak, Philippa returned to her palace, followed by her companions, who looked after the exhausted woman. Both mother and child were cared for, and ever afterward remained under the queen’s protection.
7. Not long after this, Philippa’s little son fell dangerously ill, and his afflicted mother, powerless to save him, could only pray to God to spare her child. One night the queen dreamed she was in heaven, and heard the dread decision that her boy must die. All at once a stately lady appeared before our Lord, and said, “Mercy, O Lord! Take not her child away, for she is a good mother.”
8. At these words the queen awoke, and hastening to the bedside of her little one found him sleeping calmly, and the fever gone. Then she knew that it was the Blessed Virgin who had interceded for her, and that her son was saved.
Explain the expressions: “shed more glory” (1); “moved with pity” (3); “Edward wins our cities, but Philippa conquers our hearts” (3).
What other words could be used for “demanded” (2); “execution” (2); “relented” (3); “wailing” (5); “exhausted” (6); “interceded” (8)?
2. Vol-ca’no; n. a mountain from which lava, steam, and the like are thrown out.
6. Sev’er-al; adj. more than two, but not very many.
7. Mis-tak’en; adj. wrong; not correct.
11. Sur’face; n. the outer part of any thing that has breadth.
Pronunciation.—Say let me, not lem me; ge-og’ra-phy, not jog’er-fy; sev’er-al, not sev’rul.
1. “A, c-o-n con, Acon, c-a ca, Aconca—— Oh, dear, what a hard word! Let me see—A-con-ca-gua. I never can pronounce it, I am sure. I wish they would not have such hard names in geography,” said George Gould, quite out of patience. “Will you please tell me how to pronounce the name of this mountain, father?”
2. “Why do you call that a hard word, George? I know much harder ones than that.” — “Well, father, this is the hardest word I ever saw,” replied George. “I wish they had put the name into the volcano, and burnt it up.”
3. “I know how to pronounce it,” said Jane. “It is A-con-ca’gua!”—“A-con-ca’gua,” said George, stopping at each syllable. “Well, it is not so very hard after all; but I wish they would not have any long words, and then I could pronounce them easily enough.”
4. “I don’t think so,” said his father. “Some of the hardest words I have ever seen are the shortest. I know one little word, with only two letters in it, that very few children, or men either, can always speak.”
5. “Oh, I suppose it is some French or German word; isn’t it, father?”—“No, it is English; and you may think it strange, but it is just as hard to pronounce in one language as another.”
6. “Only two letters! What can it be?” cried both the children.—“The hardest word,” replied the father, “I have ever met with in any language—and I have learned several—is the little word of two letters—N-o, No.”
7. “Now you are making fun of us!” cried the children; “that is one of the easiest words in the world.” And to prove that their father was mistaken, they both repeated, “No, no, no,” a great many times.
8. “ I am not joking in the least,” said their father. “I really think it is the hardest of all words. It may seem easy enough to you tonight, but perhaps you can not pronounce it tomorrow.”
9. “I can always say it; I know I can,” said George, with much confidence. “No! Why, it is as easy to say it as to breathe.”—“Well, George, I hope you will always find it as easy to pronounce as you think it is now, and be able to speak it when you ought to.”
10. In the morning, George went bravely to school, a little proud that he could pronounce so hard a word as “Aconcagua.” Not far from the school-house was a large pond of very deep water, where the boys used to skate and slide when it was frozen over.
11. Now, the night before, Jack Frost had been busy changing the surface of the pond into hard, clear ice, which the boys in the morning found as smooth as glass. The day was cold, and they thought that by noon the ice would be strong enough to bear.
Questions.—What word did Mr. Gould think the hardest to pronounce? Is it as hard in every language? What did George think of it? Who is Jack Frost? What had he done during the night? What did the boys think of the ice?
Write a story similar to this, changing some of the circumstances.
Spe’cial; adj particular.
5. Cow’ard; n. one who lacks courage to meet danger.
8. At-tract’od; v. drawn to; caused to approach.
9. Pos’i-tive; adj. clearly stated; not admitting of any doubt.
13. Re-quires’; v. needs.
14. Ef’fort; n. attempt; trial; struggle.
As soon as the school was out, the boys all ran to the pond, some to try the ice, and others merely to see it.
2. “Come, George,” said William Green, “now we will have a glorious time sliding.” George hesitated, and said he did not believe it was strong enough, for it had been frozen over only one night.
3. “Oh, come on!” said another boy; “I know it is strong enough. I have known it to freeze over in one night, many a time, so it would bear. Haven’t you, John?” — “Yes,” answered John Brown, “it did one night last winter, and it wasn’t so cold as it was last night, either.”
4. But George still hesitated, for his father had forbidden him to go on the ice without special permission.
5. “I know why George won’t go,” said John; “He’s afraid he might fall and hurt himself.”—“Or the ice might crack,” said another.—“Perhaps, his mother might not like it.”—“He’s a coward; that’s the reason he won’t come.”
6. George could stand this no longer, for he was rather proud of his courage. “I am not afraid,” said he; and he ran to the pond and was the first one on the ice. The boys enjoyed the sport very much, running and sliding, and trying to catch one another.
7.. More boys kept coming on as they saw the sport, and all began to think there was no danger, when suddenly there was a loud cry, “The ice has broken! The ice has broken!” and sure enough, three of the boys had broken through and were struggling in the water. One of the m was George.
8. The teacher had been attracted by the noise, and was coming to call the boys from the ice just as they broke through. He tore off some boards from a fence close by, and shoved them out on the ice until they came within reach of the boys in the water. After a while he succeeded in getting them out, but not until they were nearly frozen.
9. George’s father and mother were very much frightened when he was brought home, and they learned how narrowly he had escaped drowning. But they were so rejoiced to find that he was safe, that they did not ask him how he came to gone on the ice, until after tea. When they were all gathered together about the cheerful fire, his father asked him how he came to disobey his positive command. George said he did not want to go, but the boys made him.
10. “How did they make you? Did they take hold of you and drag you on?” asked his father.—“No,” said George; “but they all wanted me to go.”
11. “When they asked you, why didn’t you say ‘No’?”—“I was going to; but they called me a coward, and said I was afraid to go, and I couldn’t stand that.”
12. “ And so,” said his father, “you found it easier to disobey me, and run the risk of losing your life, than to say that little word you thought so easy last night. You could not say ‘No’!”
13. George now began to see why this little word “No” was so hard to pronounce. It was not because it was so long, or composed of such difficult sounds; but because it often requires so much real courage to say it—to say “No” when one is tempted to do wrong.
14. Whenever, in after-life, George was tempted to do wrong, he remembered his narrow escape, and the importance of the little word “No.” The oftener he said it, the easier it became; and in time he could say it, when needed, without much effort.
15. Boys and girls, whenever you are tempted to do wrong, never forget to say “No.”
Questions.—What did the boys do when school was out? What did they urge George to do? Why did he refuse to go on the ice? How did the boys taunt him? What was the result? What happened? Who rescued the boys? What excuse did George make for going on the ice? What did his father say? Why is “No,” the hardest word to pronounce? How did George act in after-life?
9. The One-eyed Servant
1. Trail; v. climb.
1. Un-tidy; adj. not neat; careless.
2. Shab’by; adj. poor-looking; ragged.
3. Might; n. power; strength.
5. Cob’bler; n. one who mends shoes.
5. Awl; n. a pointed tool for piercing small holes in leather or wood.
The One-Eyed Servant.
Pronunciation.—Say for-lorn’, not fo-lorn’; ima-ag’ine, not im-ag’un; sit’ting, not set’tin; ear’nest-lu, not er’nes-ly; worse (wurs), not wuss; only, not o’ny; hand’some is pronounced han’sum; on’ions is pronounced Un’yu’s; say used to, not useter.
1. Do you see those two pretty cottages on the opposite sides of the square? How bright the windows are, and how prettily the vines trail over them! A year ago one of them was the dirtiest and most forlorn-looking place you can imagine, and Bella, its mistress, a most untidy woman.
2. She was one day sitting at her cottage door with her arms folded, as if in thought. Her dress was torn and shabby; her apron, which had once been neat and white, and a great rent in it; her shoes were down at the heel; and altogether she looked poor and forlorn.
3. She sat some time gazing across the square, when suddenly she heard a sound as of some one stitching. She looked around, and sitting under a bush she saw the funniest kind of a little man. He wore a blue coat, a yellow waistcoat, and red boots. He had a small shoe on his lap, and was stitching away at it with all his might.
4. “Good morning, ma’am!” said the little man, “a very fine day. Why are you looking so earnestly across the square?”—“I was looking at my neighbor’s cottage,” said the young woman.—“What! At Tome Gardener’s? Looks thriving, doesn’t it?”
5. “Oh, Polly was always lucky,” said Bella; “and her husband is always good to her.”—“Your husband was good, too, at first,” said the little cobbler. “Please reach me my awl, will you? It lies close by your feet.”
6. “Well, I can’t say but they were both good husbands at first,” replied Bella, handing him the awl; “but mine has changed for the worse, and hers for the better. And then, see how she thrives Only to think that we were both married on the same day; and now I’ve nothing, and she has a Sunday dress and a handsome apron; and a flitch of bacon in the chimney; and a rope of onions.”—“Yes, and a lot of flax she spun last winter,” said the cobbler.
7. “Has your husband no work?” asked the little man.—“No; he lost the place he had.” —“Why how is that? He used to be a good man. Can’t he get work?”—“His last employer wouldn’t keep him because he was so shabby.”
8. “Humph!” said the little man. “Well, as I was saying, your neighbor opposite thrives; but no wonder! Well, I’ve nothing to do with other people’s secrets; but I could tell you, only I’m busy and must go.”—“Could tell me what?” said the young wife. “Oh, good cobbler, don’t go! Pray do tell me why it is no wonder that she should thrive.”
Questions.—What were on the opposite sides of the square? What had one of them been a year before? And its mistress? Where was she sitting one day? What was her appearance? What is meant by “down at the heel”? What sound id she suddenly hear? What did she see? What was he doing? What did he ask her? What did he say about the cottage? To what did Bella say Polly’s thriving was due? What did the cobbler reply? What did he ask Bella to do? What change did Bella say had overtaken their husbands? Why was Bella’s husband not at work? What did the cobbler hint at?
1. Wa’ges; n. money given to a person for his or her services; pay.
5. Mar’ket; n. a place of sale.
6. Vex-a’tion; n. anger; annoyance.
7. Curds; n. the thick part of milk, in making cheese.
7. Whey; n. the thin, watery fluid which is separated from the curds.
9. Dis-ap-peared’; v. passed out of sight.
11. Glimpse; n. a short view.
14. In’dus-try; n. a steady attention to work.
The One-Eyed Servant. Concluded.
1. “Well,” said the cobbler, “ it is no business of mine, you know, but, as I said before, it is no wonder people thrive who have a servant.”—“A servant?” repeated Bella, “my neighbor a servant? I think you must be mistaken; how could she afford to pay her wages?”
2. “Well, I know she has a servant,” repeated the cobbler, “ a one-eyed servant; but, to my certain knowledge, she pays her no wages. Well, good morning, ma’am, I must go.”—“Do stay one minute,” cried Bella, urgently. “Where did she get this servant?”—“Oh, I don‘t know,” said the cobbler. “Servants are plentiful enough; and Polly uses hers well, I can tell you.”
3. “And what does she do for her?”—“Do for her! Why, all sorts of things. I think she is the cause of her thriving. To my knowledge she never refuses to do anything. She keeps the clothes of Tom and Polly in beautiful order, and the baby‘s too.”
4. “Dear me! Said Bella, in a jealous tone, and holding up both her hands. “Well, she is a lucky woman, and I have always said so. She takes good care, however that I never see her servant. What sort of a servant is she? And how came she to have only one eye?”
5. “It runs in her family,” replied the cobbler, “they are all so—one eye a piece; yet they make a very good use of it. And Polly’s servant has two cousins who sometimes come and help her. I’ve seen them in the cottage myself. And that is the way Polly gets a good deal of her money. They all work for her, and she takes all they make to market, and then buys those handsome things you speak of.”
6. “ Only think,” said Bella, almost ready to cry with vexation, “and I’ve no one to help me; how hard it is!” and she took up her apron to wipe away her tears. The cobbler looked at her. “Well, you are to be pitied, certainly,” he said; “and if I were not in such a hurry——”
7. “Oh, do go on, pray—you were going to say you could help me. I’ve heard that you kind of people are fond of curds and whey. Now if you would help me., I would set the nicest curds and whey on the hearth every night for you.”
8. “But, ma’am, you see,” said the cobbler, stopping, “my people are very particular about cleanliness, and your house is not what one would call very clean. No offence, I hope?” Bella blushed deeply. “Well, but it would be always clean if you would help me. Every day of my life I would scrub the floor, and sand it; and the hearth would be whitewashed, and the windows cleaned.”
9. “Well,” said the cobbler, seeming to consider, “well, then, may be I could also find a one-eyed servant for you,—but it may be several days before I succeed,—but mind, I’m to have a good dish of curds and whey.”—“Yes, and some nice cream too,” replied Bella, full of joy. The cobbler then took up all his tools, wrapped them in his leathern apron, and disappeared.
10. Bella was delighted. In a day or two, her husband scarcely knew the house, she had made it so bright and clean; she had washed the curtains, cleaned the windows, rubbed the fire-irons, sanded the floor, and set a great jug of flowers on the table.
11. Bella kept a sharp look-out for the cobbler, and also on her neighbor’s house, to see whether she could catch a glimpse of the one-eyed servant. But no; nothing could she see but her neighbor hard at work, scrubbing, washing, sewing, day in and day out.
12 At last, one day, Bella heard the voice of the cobbler outside. She ran to the door, and cried out, “Oh, please come in, sir; only look at my house.”—“Well, this is an improvement,” said the cobbler; “I declare everything is as neat and clean as a new pin.”
13. Bella was pleased at his praise. “Have you found the servant for me?” she asked. “You remember, I hope, that I can’t pay her any wages; have you met with one that will come?”—“All’s right replied the little man, nodding; “I’ve got her with me.”—“Got her with you?” repeated Bella, looking round.
14. “Look, here she is,” said the cobbler handing her a piece of folded paper. On opening it, Bella read the word Industry with a Needle run through it. Taking the hint, Bella, her husband, and cottage were all soon as tidy as her neighbor’s.
Questions.—What did the cobbler say was the cause of Polly’s thriving? Why did Bella think he was mistaken? What kind of servant did he say it was? And what about wages? What did he say the servant did for her? Who sometimes helped the one-eyed servant? What did Bella then begin to do? What did she promise the cobbler? If what? What objection did he make? What did she then promise? What did the cobbler then say? What did Bella at once begin to do? For what did she watch next morning? What did the cobbler say when he came in? For what did she ask him? What answer surprised her very much? What was the one-eyed servant?
1. Mys’ter-ies; n. secrets.
1. Wist’ful; adj. eager; longing.
1. Lull’a-by; n. a song to quiet babes.
1. Hoard’ed; v. secretly collected; stored.
1. Whet; v. sharpen.
1. Ma-te’ri-al; adj. important; solid.
2. Pro-ject’iles; n. bodies thrown forward by force, especially through the air, as an arrow from a bow.
2. Re-bounding; v. springing back.
2. Trom’bone; n. a musical instrument resembling a trumpet.
2. Staunch; adj. sound; firm.
3. Solve; v. to explain; to make clear.
3. Gim’crack; n. a toy; a trifle.
3. Sev’en-ty-four’; n. a man-of-war carrying seventy-four guns.
4. Re-volve’; v. to turn or roil round.
1. The Yankee boy, before he’s sent to school,
Well knows the mysteries of that magic tool,
The pocket-knife. To that his wistful eye
Turns, while he hears his mother’s lullaby;
His horded cents he gladly gives to get it,
Then leaves no stone unturned till he can whet it;
And in the education of the lad
No little part that implement hath had.
His pocket-knife to the young whittler brings
A growing knowledge of material things.
2. Projectiles, music, and the sculptor’s art,
His chestnut whistle and his shingle car,
His elder pop-gun with its hickory rod, Its sharp explosion and rebounding wad,
His corn-stalk fiddle, and the deeper tone
That murmurs from his pumpkin-stalk trombone,
Conspire to teach the boy. To these succeed
His bow, his arrow of a feathered reed,
His windmill, raised the passing breeze to win,
His water-wheel that turns upon a pin,
Or, if his father lives upon the shore,
You’ll see his ship, “beam ends upon the floor,”
Full rigged with raking masts, and timbers staunch,
And waiting near the wash-tub for a launch.
3. Thus, by his genius and his jack-knife driven,
Ere long he’ll solve you any problem given;
Make any gimcrack, musical or mute,
A plough, a couch, an organ., or a flute;
Make you a locomotive or a clock,
Cut a canal, or build floating-dock,
Or lead forth beauty from a marble block;—
Make anything, in short, for sea or shore,
From a child’s rattle to a seventy-four;—
Make it, said I?—Ay, when he undertakes it,
He’ll make the thing, and the machine that makes it.
4. And when the thing is made,—whether it be to move on earth, in air, or on the sea;
Whether on water o’er the waves to glide,
Or, upon land to roll, revolve, or slide;
Whether to whirl or jar, to strike or ring,
Whether it be a piston or a spring,
Wheel, pulley, tube sonorous, wood or brass,
The thing designed shall surely come to pass:
For when his hand’s upon it, you may know
That there’s go in it, and he’ll make it go.
What is the “magic tool” mentioned in the first stanza? How does it help to teach the boy? What will he do besides “make the thing”?
Change this lesson into prose.
The expression “lead forth beauty from a marble block” means to “carve a beautiful statue from marble.”
11. The First Telescope
1. Burg’o-master; n. a Dutch magistrate.
1. Pol’ish; v. to make smooth.
2. Clum’sy; adj without skill.
4. Deft; adj. fit; neat
4. Ac-cus’tomed; v. used to; familiar with.
6. Fan’cy; n. notion; idea.
7. Prac’ti-cal; adj ready to apply knowledge to some useful end.
7. Bulg’ing; v. swelling.
8. Ap-ply’ing; v. making use of.
8. Fo’cus; n. the point in which the rays of light meet when reflected or refracted.
The First Telescope.
Pronunciation.—Say o-be’di-ent, not o-be’jent; dif’fer-ent, not different; some’what (hwot), not someway; hollowed, not hollered. Len’ses is pronounced as if spelled len’zes. Say per’fect-ly, not per’fick-ly; gov’ern-ment, not gov’e-munt.
1. Hans Lippersheim had just finished his part of the work on a new pair of spectacles which he had promised to have ready for the burgomaster by Sunday, and turned them over to his little daughter Meenie to polish the frames.
2. Hans’ fingers were growing thick and clumsy now, and although no one in the little Dutch town could grind the glasses as well or as true as he, the lighter work he entrusted to younger hands.
3. Hans was very proud of his little girl, and with reason; for she was obedient to her parents, diligent and attentive at school, and always willing to help about the house or in the shop.
4. It did not take long for her deft fingers to scrape the thick frames into a less clumsy shape, or to give them the polish which was considered the finishing touch. Then she put them carefully in their rude, wooden case, so different from the neat leather ones we are accustomed to, and laid them aside until they should be called for.
5. After this, she swept up the shavings, and made things tidy. Suddenly she became quiet, and as this was unusual for her, her father turned to see what occupied her attention. But she was only looking through two pieces of glass. One of these she held as far off as her arm could reach, while the other was brought close to her eye.
6. As she often amused herself thus, Hans turned to his work again, when all at once the little maiden cried, “Oh, father how queer! I can see the church steeple so plainly! It looks as though it were just outside the window!” Hans thought it some childish fancy, but when she again exclaimed, “Look, father dear; just look at the church steeple!” his curiosity was aroused.
7. Taking the glasses in his hands, he held them apart, somewhat as Meenie had, and was astonished to find that the steeple was, indeed, brought much nearer his view. His practical mind saw in this the first step toward a wonderful discovery. He examined the glasses, and found that the one nearer the eye was flat on one side and hollowed out on the other, while that held at a distance was flat on one side and rounded or bulging out on the other.
8. Hans lost no time applying his newly acquired knowledge. He made a tube of pasteboard, to which he fitted the glasses, or lenses, as they were called, at their proper focus, and thus completed the first telescope, an instrument which was to benefit science so greatly. When he found how perfectly this worked, he made others, which he sent to the government.
9. The invention of the telescope is sometimes credited to others; but it is doubtful whether any of them have so just a claim as Hans Lippersheim, the Dutch spectacle-maker, and his little daughter.
Find other words which express the same meaning, in the sense of the lesson, as “true” (2); “rude” (4); “fancy” (6); “acquired” (8); “credited” (9).
Mention words meaning the opposite of “deft” (4); “rude” (4); “different” (4); “bulging” (7); “benefit” (8); “doubtful” (9).
12. The Care of God
2. Splin’ters; n. a small piece split off.
3. Stum’bled; v. tripped.
3. Ter’ror; n. extreme fear.
4. In-flict’ed; v. made; caused.
5. Me-mo’ri-al; n. a remembrance.
5. To-kens; n. signs; proofs.
5. Three’-score; adj. sixty.
The Care of God.
Pronunciation.—Say in’ter-est, not interest. The e in to’ken is silent (to’kn). Say per-haps’, not p’raps, or worse still perhaps.
1. “Do you see this lock of hair?” said an old man to me. “It is a curl from my own head; and it is now nearly seventy years since it was cut off. I keep it thus with care, because it speaks to me of God, and of his special care, more than anything else I possess.”
2. “I was a little child, four years old, with long, curly locks which, in sun, or rain, or wind, hung down my cheeks. One day my father went into the woods to cut a log, and I went with him. I was standing a little behind him, or rather at his side, watching with interest the stroke of the heavy ax, as it went up and came down, sending splinters in all directions.”
3. “Some of the splinters fell at my feet, and I eagerly stooped to pick them up. In doing so I stumbled forward, and in a moment my curly head lay upon the log. I had fallen just at the moment when the ax was coming down with all its force. It was too late to stop the blow. Down came the ax. I screamed, and my father fell to the ground in terror. He could not stay the stroke, and in the blindness which the sudden horror caused he thought he had killed his boy.”
4. “We soon recovered—I from my fright, and he from his terror. He caught me in his arms and looked at me from head to foot, to find the deadly wound which he was sure he had inflicted. Not a drop of blood nor a scar was to be seen. He knelt upon the grass and gave thanks to God for His mercy. Having done so, he took up his ax and found a few hairs upon its edge. He turned to the log he had been splitting, and there upon the wood was a single curl of his boy’s hair sharply cut through. How great the escape! It was as if an angel had turned aside the edge of the ax at the moment it was descending upon my head.”
5. “That lock my father kept all his days as a memorial of God’s care and love. That lock he left to me on his death-bed. I keep it with care. It tells me of God. It rebukes my unbelief and alarm. It bids me trust Him forever. I have had many tokens of fatherly love in my three-score years and ten, but somehow this speaks most to my heart. It is the oldest and perhaps the most striking. It used to speak to my father’s heart; it now speaks to mine.”
Composition Exercise.—Write out the story of the lesson in your own words.
13. The Dangerous Kittens
1. Fe-ro’cious; adj. fierce; wild; cruel.
1. Sway; n. power; rule.
2. Em’i-grants; n. people leaving their own country to settle in another.
3. Prompt’ed; v. led; moved.
4. Tri’fles; n. things of little importance.
5. Va’ri-ous; adj. different.
6. Cop’per-y; adj. like copper.
6. Blanched; v. grew white.
7. Gest’ures; n. movements of the body or limbs.
7. In-de-cis’ion; n. want of settled purpose.
8. Pur-sue; v. follow with haste; chase.
9. En-er-get’ic; adj. active.
9. Fu’ri-ous; adj. angry; mad.
The Dangerous Kittens.
Pronunciation.—Say fam’i-ly, not fam’er-ly, or family; ex-act’ly, not ez’ack-ly; be careful to sound the t in for’ests.
1. The jaguar, sometimes called the American tiger, is the most ferocious of American quadrupeds, and in the forests of South America it reigns with undisputed sway.
2. Some years ago a family of emigrants settled in the forests of Brazil, on the side of a lake. One of their number was a little boy named Leon. One day, while amusing himself in the woods, Leon spied a large hole in the side of a cliff, from which seemed to come a noise not unlike the mew of a cat.
3. Curiosity prompted him to look inside, and, in a sort of nest on the bottom of the cave, he perceived two large spotted kittens, about half as big as full-grown cats. “What beauties!” said Leon to himself; “they are the kittens of some wild cat. Now, we want a cat at home, for I have heard mamma say so. If these were brought up in the house, I am sure they would be tame enough. I will give mamma an agreeable surprise by taking this pair home. Pretty things they are!”
4. Without another word, Leon climbed up, and getting hold of the two spotted animals, pulled them out of the cave. They were evidently very young; yet they growled and spat and attempted to scratch his hands. But Leon was not a boy to be frightened at trifles; and getting one under each arm, he set off in triumph, intending to carry them home.
5. An Indian servant was in front of the house busy fitting a handle into his ax. The rest of the family were engaged in various labors. Just then they heard Leon shouting from the other side of the lake, where he was seen standing with a strange object under each arm. “Hullo!” cried he. “Look! See what I have; I have brought you a couple of cats—beauties, aren’t they?” And as he said this, he held out the two yellow kittens.
6. His father turned pale, and even the coppery cheek of the Indian blanched at the sight. Though at some distance, both knew at a glance what the creatures were. Cats, indeed! They were the cubs of the jaguar! “O heavens!” cried the father hoarse with fright, “the boy will be lost!” and as he spoke, he swept the edge of the lake with an anxious glance.
7. “Run, little master!” shouted the Indian. “Run for your life! Make for the bridge—for the bridge!” Leon seemed astonished. He knew by their earnest words and gestures that there was some danger—but of what? Why was he to run? He could not understand it. He hesitated, and might have staid longer on the spot, had not his father, seeing his indecision, shouted out to him in a loud voice, “Run, boy, run! The jaguars are after you!”
8. For the first time, Leon seemed to understand his situation; and he immediately started for the bridge, running as fast as he was able. The father had not seen the jaguars when he spoke, but he knew they would pursue the robber of the den. The words had hardly been uttered when two yellow bodies, dashing out of the brushwood, appeared near the upper end of the lake. There was no mistaking what they were. Their orange flanks and spotted sides were sufficiently characteristic. They were jaguars! A few springs brought them to the edge of the water, and they were seen to take the track over which Leon had just passed.
9. They were following the scent—sometimes pausing, sometimes passing each other—their waving tails, and quick, energetic movements showing that they were furious and excited to the highest degree. Now they disappeared behind the palm-trees, the next moment their shining bodies shot out again like flashes of light.
What expressions mean “full power” (1); “he looked earnestly and with great concern along the banks of the lake” (6); “well marked” (8)?
Mention a synonym, that is, a word having the same meaning as “prompted” (3); “blanched” (6); “gestures” (7); “furious” (9).
1. Pre-cip’i-tous; adj. very steep.
1. Chasm; n. a deep opening in the earth.
1. Ad-hered’; v. held fast.
5. Ca-ress’; v. to treat with fondness; to hug.
6. Spec-at’tors; n. lookers-on.
6. Re-lent’less; adj. without pity.
6. Per-ti-nac’I-ty; n. firmness; obstinacy.
7. Re-flect’ed; v. thought; considered; mused.
8. Mus’cle; n. an organ of motion.
8. Fore’most; adj. first; nearest.
9. Re-doubled; v. increased; doubled again.
11. Is’sue; n. result; end.
13. Ra-vine’; n. a deep and narrow hollow.
The Dangerous Kittens. Concluded.
1. The Indian seized his ax, and ran toward the tree which served as a bridge. Leon’s father shouted words of encouragement, and followed with his pistols, which he had hastily seized. The lake was long and narrow. At its lower end a wild, rushing river found an outlet through a deep, precipitous chasm. This chasm could be crossed by means of a fallen tree, the roots of which still adhered to the opposite bank, while on one side the end of the trunk rested on the edge of the rocky cliff.
2. For a moment there was silence on both sides of the river. The Indian was opposite Leon, both running. The stream narrowed as it approached the bridge, and they could see each other, and hear every word distinctly. The Indian now cried out, “Drop one! Only one!”
3. Leon heard, and, being a sharp boy, understood in an instant. Up to this moment he had not thought of paring with his “cats.” Now, however, at the voice of the Indian, he flung one of them to the ground. He ran on. In a few seconds he hear, “Now the other!”
4. Leon let the other slip from his grasp, and kept on for the bridge. It was well he did drop the cubs, or he would never have reached that bridge. When the first one fell, the jaguars were not twenty paces behind; but by good fortune, he was hid from their view by the weeds and underbrush.
5. On reaching first cub, both stopped, and began to lick and caress it. They remained but a moment. One started sooner the other—the female—in search of the second one. Shortly after the other started also, and both were again seen springing along the trail in pursuit. A few stretches brought them where the second cub lay, and here they again halted, caressing this one as they had the first.
6. The spectators on the other side were in hopes that, having recovered their young, the jaguars might give up the chase, and return to their den. But they were mistaken. Once enraged, the American tiger will seek revenge with relentless pertinacity. After delaying a moment with the second cub, both left it and sprang forward upon the trail which they knew had been taken by the robber.
7. By this time Leon had gained the bridge, had crossed it, and was in the arms of the Indian. The latter scarce spoke a word—only telling Leon to hurry toward the house. For himself, he had other work. The bridge, he knew, would be no protection. The jaguars would cross over it like squirrels, and then—— The Indian reflected no further; but, bending over the thick trunk, began to cut away the bridge.
8. The ax was plied with all the might of a strong and willing arm. Every muscle of the body was in play. Blow succeeded blow. The bridge was already creaking, when to his horror, on the other side the foremost of the jaguars appeared in sight! Not discouraged, he strikes again—faster and faster falls the ax; the jaguar is on the bank; it has sprung upon the root of the tree. It pauses for a moment—bounds upon the trunk—it is halfway over the chasm! Another blow—the bridge cracks—there is a crash—it parts from the cliff—it is gone! Both tree and jaguar—down—down to the sharp rocks of the foaming torrent!
9. A loud yell from the Indian announced his triumph. But it was not yet complete. The female jaguar—the smaller one— had fallen. The male still remained upon the opposite bank! He had dashed forward just in time to see his mate disappear into the gulf below. He saw, and seemed to comprehend all that had passed. His eyes glared with redoubled fury. There was vengeance in his look, and determination in his attitude.
10. For a moment he surveyed the wide gulf which separated him from his enemies. The distance was measured at a glance. His heart was bold with rage and despair. He had lost his companion. Life was nothing compared with revenge. Running a few paces back from the edge of the chasm, he set his body for the spring.
11. Ax in hand, the Indian stood upon the opposite bank, ready to receive him. He had not long to wait. With one desperate bound the jaguar launched his body into the air, and, like lighting, passed to the opposite bank. His fore-feet only reached it, and his claws firmly grasped the rock. The rest of his body hung over, clutching the cliff. Will he fall? Or will he keep his foothold? To the Indian life or death depends on the issue.
12. In a moment the beast would have sprung up, and then woe to his antagonist! But that moment was not allowed him; for he had scarcely touched the rock when the Indian leaped forward and struck his head. The blow was not well aimed; though stunned, the jaguar still clung to the cliff. Setting himself for another blow, the Indian came too near, and the next moment the claws of the tiger were buried in his foot.
13. It is difficult to tell what would have been the result. The Indian would probably have been dragged over to certain death; but at this moment a hand was thrust forward from behind—the muzzle of a pistol was seen close at the head of the jaguar—a loud crack ran through the ravine, and when the smoke cleared away the jaguar was seen no more! The Indian, with his foot badly torn, was drawn back from the cliff.
Write a short story of your own, telling something that you know, or have read, about an adventure with wild animals.
14. Bruce and the Spider
1. Pon’dered; v. thought over carefully.
4. Clew; n. thread; help.
5. Dome; n. roof.
5. Di-vine’; v. guess.
14. Braced; v. strengthened.
15. Be-ware’; v. take heed; be careful.
Bruce and the Spider.
Pronunciation.—Say ceil’ing, not ceil’in; in’sect, not in’sec. In reading poetry, it should be emphasized like prose; avoid what is called sing-song.
1. King Bruce of Scotland flung himself down,
in a lonely mood to think;
True, he was a monarch, and wore a crown,
But his heart began to sink.
2. For he had been trying to do a great deed,
To make his people glad;
He made tried and tried, but could not succeed,
And so he became quite sad.
3. He flung himself down in low despair,
As grieved as man could be;
And after a while he pondered there,—
“I’ll give it up,” cried he.
4. Now just at the moment a spider dropped,
With its silken cobweb clew;
And the king in the midst of his thinking stopped
To see what the spider would do.
5. ‘Twas a long way up to the ceiling dome,
and it hung by a rope so fine,
That how it would get to its cobweb home
King Bruce could not divine.
6. It soon began to cling and crawl
Straight up with strong endeavor;
But down it came with a slipping sprawl,
As near to the ground as ever.
7. Up, up it ran, nor a second did stay,
To make the least complaint,
Till it fell still lower; and there it lay
A little dizzy and faint.
8. Its head grew steady—again it went
And traveled a half yard higher;
‘Twas a delicate thread it had to tread,
And a road where its feet would tire.
9. Again it fell, and swung below;
But up it quickly mounted,
Till up and down, now fast, now slow,
Six brave attempts were counted.
10. “Sure,” said the king, “That foolish thing
Will strive no more to climb,
When it toils so hard to reach and cling,
And tumbles every time.”
11. But up the insect went once more;
Ah me! ‘tis an anxious minute:
He’s only a foot from his cobweb door;
Oh, say, will he lose or win it?
12. Steadily, steadily, inch by inch,
Higher and higher he got,
And bold little run at the very last pinch
Put him into the wished-for spot.
13. “Bravo! Bravo!” the king cried out;
“ all honor to those who try;
The spider up there defied despair;—
He conquered, and why should not I?”
14. And Bruce of Scotland braced his mind,
And gossips tell the tale,
That he tried once more as he tried before,
And that time he did not fail.
15. Pay goodly heed, al ye who read,
And beware of saying, “I can’t;”
‘Tis a cowardly word, and apt to lead
To idleness, folly, and want.
Heads for Composition.
King Robert the Bruce, in the days of his adversity, flung himself down in despair in a lonely cave.
He had made up his mind to give up the struggle, when he noticed a spider fail six times to climb up its slender thread.
But it made a seventh attempt, and succeeded. Bruce resolved also to make another effort; and he delivered his country and recovered his throne.
Change the paragraph which contains the moral into prose.
15. Wonders of the Yellowstone Park
1. Nov’el-ty; n. newness.
1. Sec’tion; n. part.
2. Gey’sers; n. fountains of boiling water.
3. Clam’bered; v. climbed with difficulty.
4. Di-am’e-ter; n. width.
4. Gi-gan’tic; adj. very large.
4. Cal’dron; n. a large kettle.
5. Vol’ume; n. size; mass.
6. Ad-joins’; v. lies next to.
6. Di-men’sions; v. size.
6. Viv’id; adj. bright; clear.
8. Shal’low; adj. not deep.
9. Sub-dued’; adj. softened.
10. Ap-pall’ing; adj. causing fear.
10 Cat’a-ract; n. a great fall of water.
Wonders of the Yellowstone Park.
Pronunciation.—Say act’u-al-ly, not ack’shal-ly; language, not lan’gwidge; app-par’ent-ly; the t in glis’ten is silent; say shal’low, not shal’ler; ir-reg’u-lar, not ir-reg’lar; height, not heighth; tre-men’dous, not tre-men’jus.
1. Nowhere, probably, on the face of the earth, has nature crowded so much of grandeur and majesty, so much of novelty and wonder, within the same limits, as in the Yellowstone Park, which lies, mainly, in the north-western section of Wyoming Territory.
2. Among the most remarkable features of this very remarkable region are the Mammoth Springs, which actually cover one hundred and seventy acres, and include the greatest geysers in the world, before which the Great Geyser and Strokr (which means Churn) of Iceland dwindle with insignificance. Some of the phenomena of this land of beauty and of wonder are thus described by a traveler:
3. “After riding about five miles, a cloud of steam on the opposite side of the river announced our arrival at Egeria Springs. Fording the rapid and stony Firehole River, our ponies clambered up the rocky banks, where we tied them to trees, and then a few steps brought us to the edge of Excelsior, the largest geyser in the world.”
4. “Imagine a pit two hundred and fifty feet in diameter, sunk to a depth of fifteen to twenty feet in the solid rock, and full of water, boiling and bubbling like a gigantic caldron, while from the whole surface a column of steam is constantly ascending, almost concealing the water below. On the river side, half the rocky bank has been swept away by some terrific eruption, and through the gap thus formed a stream of boiling water rushes into the river. The other banks overhang the basin, and seem as if about to fall.”
5. “The eruptions of the Excelsior are rare. I could learn of but two that had been witnessed. On the occasion of one, the column of water was sixty feet in diameter, and ascended three hundred feet. The volume of water was so great as to sweep away all the bridges over the Firehole River. The roar seemed like an earthquake, and huge stones were scattered for quite a distance round.”
6. “Language fails to describe the beauty of the Grand Prismatic Spring which adjoins this geyser. Its dimensions are two hundred and fifty by three hundred feet. Although hot, its surface is calm. The color in the centre is of the deepest blue, softly shading near the edges into a beautiful green. Closer to the shore the tints change to yellow, then to orange, dark red, brown and yellow on a white ground. These colors are formed, apparently, by the different deposits on the bed of the river, and are all strikingly vivid and distinct.”
7. “As the steam which arises is blown away, the surface is exposed here and there, and the eye rests first upon one color, then upon another, so strangely contrasted, so vivid, and yet so beautiful as they glisten in the bright sunshine, that it seems more like magic than anything existing in nature.”
8. “Passing the Grotto and the craters of Young Faithful, the Giant, and several other large geysers, we walked down to Old Faithful, which was then nearly due. A gentle ascent, broken into low steps over which little streams of water flowed, forming shallow pools here and there, is crowned with an irregular mass of rock about six feet high and twenty feet in diameter, in the centre of which is a hole the size of a hogshead. All around is a barren rock of whitish gray, and as rough as a nutmeg-grater.”
9. “While we waited, the crater filled up with hot water, which boiled and tossed and churned itself into foam, and then sunk away again; then with a gasp and subdued growl, it shot up two or three feet and fell back, again tossing itself into foam.”
10. “Another loud rumble, and the water went up a foot higher than before, and once more fell back; then another rumble, still louder, and the height of six feet was reached. Just as the water was, to all appearances, subsiding, there came a tremendous and appalling roar, and a great body of scalding water, the entire diameter of the crater, shot boldly up and up and up, in jet after jet, until a solid column one hundred and thirty feet high was created, and this gracefully waved in the wind and fell like a cataract opposite us, while the steam rising from it seemed to reach the very heavens.”
11. “At the first roar we all hurried away to a safe distance. But seeing the regularity of the movement of the water, we gradually approached to within twenty feet. After playing about four minutes, the column wavered and gradually fell, and then with a great gurgle the water disappeared down the tube of the crater leaving the latter perfectly empty but so hot that all traces of water instantly disappeared.”
What expressions mean “shrink into nothing” (2); “it would be difficult to find words” (6)?
Read the lesson carefully, and then write an abstract from memory.
1. Bus’tle; n. great stir.
2. Bil’low-y; adj. wavy.
3. Main-tain’; v. to keep up; to support.
4. Dis-charged’; v. sent forth.
5. Sub-lime’; adj. grand.
5. Shift’ing; v. changing about.
5. Lee’ward; adv. That part toward which the wind blows.
7. Hem’; v. surround.
8. Head’long; adj. very swift.
8. Sheer; adj. straight up and down.
9. E-merging; v. coming forth.
9. Hurls; v. flings; throws with force.
9. A-byss’; n. deep space; great depth.
Wonders of Yellowstone Park. Concluded.
1. “Night came without the expected eruption of the Grand Geyser, and we went to bed disappointed. Just at daybreak, the cry went through the camp, ‘Turn out, turn out! The Grand is going!’ Then there was, indeed, a bustle. All scrambled to their feet and ran down the bank of the river, across the little foot-bridge, and up the slope beyond, at the top of their speed, filled with great excitement, for the Grand was at last in full operation.”
2. “Although the geyser tube of the Grand is not over four feet in diameter, its eruption seemed to spread so as to take in the whole diameter of the pool, making a column fully fifteen feet in diameter. This great mass of water, far larger than any we had yet seen, shot straight upward to the height of two hundred feet, accompanied with tremendous, billowy clouds of steam, which mounted to double that height, and, as they were changed into spray, fell around in a drizzling rain.”
3. “The rumbling and roaring of the escaping steam and water were deafening. The column seemed to maintain its height by a series of jets which appeared to be constantly forced up through the central mass. After spouting with great vigor for some five or six minutes, the column faltered and sank down. But the water had scarcely reached its original level when it was thrown upward with even greater fury and volume than before.”
4. “We counted seven distinct eruptions, occupying over half an hour. While they were going on, the Turban was also in full operation, sometimes throwing the water it discharged into the basin of the Grand. Finally, the water in both geysers sank out of sight with a loud gurgle, leaving their tubes perfectly empty.”
5. “While we were watching this sublime and awe-inspiring sight, which was reward enough for our whole journey, the wind changed several times. We lost no time in shifty our positions to agree with its direction, for the fall of the water to leeward would have swept a person away, besides scalding him to death.”
6. “Continuing along the trail and close to the dizzy depths of the canyon, I reached my party, who were gathered on an overhanging cliff known as Point Lookout, which is two miles below the hotel, Here, for the first time, I enjoyed a good view of one of the grandest sights in the world—The Great Canyon of Yellowstone.”
7. “No one who has ever seen this majestic creation of nature can ever forget it. For a mile or so from the place where we had camped, the cliffs increase in height and hem in the river more closely, forcing the water into more and more agitated rapids and cascades, until, at the Upper Fall, the water is confined into a chasm of eighty feet in width, with banks from two to three hundred feet high.”
8. “Over this the torrent rushes with a headlong sweep, and falls, with a sheer descent of one hundred and twelve feet, in an unbroken sheet upon a huge rock below, with a shock which throws up great clouds of spray nearly to the summit of the fall above the water, and forms an immense whirlpool which slowly circles at the foot of the fall.”
9. “Emerging from this, the river tears like a mad thing, breaking into rapids and cascades, dashing swiftly for half a mile further between rocky cliffs which grow constantly higher and higher, until it hurls itself over the Great Fall in a frightful leap of three hundred feet, and then plunges in a series of cascades into the dark abyss of the Great Canyon.”
1. Skirt’ing; v. running along the edge of.
2. Or’I-gin; v. beginning; source.
5. Sign’or; (seen’yur); v. Sir.
5. Spon’sor; n. godfather.
8. Dis-cussing; v. talking over.
8. Li’ra; n. an Italian coin, worth about twenty cents.
8. En-treat’ies; n. pressing requests; prayers.
9. Satisfactory; adj. giving content.
Pronunciation.—Say op’po-site, not opp’site; say I--tal’ian. Giovan’ni is pronounced Jo-vin’nee; say gen’er-ous, not gen’rous.
1. It was two days before the great feast of Pentecost. An elderly gentleman, with the air and manner of a German professor, was walking along the pretty country road which, skirting the river Po, leads from the grand old castle “La Veneria” to the city of Turin.
2. From time to time, he stopped to admire the charming scenery which lines both sides of the river. At last the ruin of a castle on the opposite bank attracted him, and wishing to know more of its history, he called a little boy, who was passing, and asked him in Italian its name and origin.
3. The answers of the young Italian, the interest he took in telling the story, and his delight in knowing something of which one so much older was ignorant, won the gentleman’s heart. He asked some further questions, and learned that the little fellow’s name was Giovanni, that his father had been killed by an accident while at work, that his mother was poor and sick, and that his mother was poor and sick, and that he was past fourteen, and one of three children.
4. “The day after to-morrow,” he added, “I shall be ready to receive Confirmation, but I fear I shall not be admitted, although my name is on the list.”—”And why should you not be admitted, pray?” inquired the gentleman.
5. “Ah, signor!” stammered the boy, a slight blush mounting to his cheek. “My sister is the only one of us who can earn anything, and none of the boys has such shabby clothes as I. Besides, I have no sponsor. Only this morning, when I asked the merchant, for whom my father worked, to stand as my sponsor, he bade me seek some one else, and not bother him.”
6. Here the little fellow burst into tears. Touched by his grief, the stranger patted him on the shoulder and said, “And, following his advice, you have found one! My name, too, is Giovanni, and I will be your sponsor. So, now, tell me where you live, and the name of your mother, and on Sunday, at the proper time, you will find me waiting for you in the church.”
7. Before the young Italian could recover from his surprise and find words to express his thanks, the stranger stepped into a carriage, which had approached, and waving his hand to the boy was driven off.
8. The next day, as Giovanni with his sister and little brother stood around their sick mother’s bed, discussing the boy’s wonderful if it could really be true, there came a rap at the door, and a man entered bearing a bundle marked “Little Giovanni,” and a purse containing two hundred lires. He delivered the packages and left immediately, without seeming to hear the entreaties of the grateful family to know the name of his master.
9. The family were delighted at sight of the coins, but when the bundle was opened and a fine velvet suit was found inside, they were nearly wild with joy. What exclamations and wondering! What numberless questions! Why, they would take a day to answer, and then would not be satisfactory. That night, Giovanni could hardly get to sleep, and when he did, it was to dream of himself standing in the church with the generous stranger at his side.
Explain the expressions “the air and manner of a German professor” (1); “won the gentlemen’s heart” (3); “on the list” (4); “wild with joy” (9).
Copy al the exclamatory sentences in the lesson.
By what other name is the feast of Pentecost known? What great miracle does this feast commemorate? In what country is the river Po? Where is Turin? What caused the gentleman to become interested in the boy? Why did Giovanni fear he would not be allowed to receive Confirmation? What did the gentleman promise? What present did Giovanni receive?
1. Brisk’ly; adv. in a lively manner.
2. Reg’is-ter; v. written account; official record; list.
4. Na’tive; adj. belonging to the place in which one is born.
4.Char’ac-ters; n. letters.
5. Pro-fes’sion; n. the business one follows; employment.
7. Func’tion; n. duty; office.
7. Ab’so-lute-ly; adv. positively; entirely; completely.
1. The feast of Pentecost was glorious day. The sun shone brightly, the fields and meadows were decked in flowers. But bright as the sun was the face of Giovanni, as, dressed in his new velvet suit, he walked briskly down the road to Turin. His heart was as pure as his face was bright, and his soul was lifted up in one long prayer to God for all His goodness.
2. When he reached the church, he entered and glanced timidly around. His heart leaped with joy as he saw the old gentleman waiting for him. Giovanni approached respectfully, and after murmuring his thanks, asked if his patron would inscribe his name in the Confirmation register.
3. “With pleasure,” answered the stranger. “Show me the way to the sacristy.” Giovanni was glad to obey; and after he gave his name to the priest, the latter handed the sponsor a pen, with the request that he would sign his name.
4. “Reverend Father,” Said the gentleman, “I am a German; please permit me to inscribe my name, with in Italian means Giovanni, in my native language.”—“Certainly, sir,” answered the priest. The stranger took the pen and wrote, in large bold characters, “Johann.”
5. “Excuse me,” said the priest politely; “but that is not enough. You must enter your full name and profession.” Again the sponsor took the pen, and added, “King of Saxony.”
6. The astonished priest could hardly believe his eyes, but when he again looked at the stranger’s face, he recognized him. Before he could recover from his surprise, the king said to him in Latin, “Reverend Father, I wish to remain unknown, and to be for this child only his sponsor, Giovanni.”
7. When the sacred function of Confirmation was over, the boy, loaded with rich presents from his noble sponsor, hastened home with a joyous heart. Nor did it end here; the good king continued to look after Giovanni, and had him educated, but all this time the name of the sponsor was kept secret.
8. At last, when the boy had grown to be a man, a professor’s chair was offered him, but he absolutely refused to accept it unless the name of his generous sponsor was revealed to him. And so it came about that Giovanni received a letter, written in Italian, which read as follows:— “I am happy in having been able to give your country so able and so good a man as you are. Your friend, John, King of Saxony.”
Heads for Composition.
Write out the lesson in your own words—a stranger is walking along a road—he meets a boy and asks him some questions—the boy tells his hopes and fears—the stranger offers to befriend him—on the day of Confirmation the stranger proves to be a king—he conceals his identity from the boy—the boy finally becomes a professor, and then learns the name of his friend.
17. The Fire Doctor
1. Res’o-lute; adj. steady; bold.
1. In-vet’er-ate; adj. old; established by long practice.
2. Ig-nite’; v. to set fire to.
3. Ex-ploits’; n. deeds; acts.
4. Pre-par’a-to-ry to; before.
5. Rat’i-fi-er; n. that which settles or establishes.
6. Prow’ess; v. bravery.
7. Beck’on-ing; v. calling attention by motion of the head or hand.
8. Trans-par’ent; adj. clear; admitting the passage of light.
8. Un-con-cerned’; adj. easy in mind; free from care.
9. Su-per-nat’u-ral; adj. above or beyond the laws of nature.
9. Gib’ber-ish; v. unmeaning words.
10. Super-sti’sious; adj. having an extreme fear of that which is unknown or mysterious.
13. War’riors; n. men engaged in war, or noted for courage and bravery in warlike pursuits.
The Fire Doctor.
Pronunciation.—Say to-bac’co, not ter-bac’ker; dif’fi-cult, not difficult; Ind’yans, not In’juns. The e in loos’en is silent. Say final-ly, not finely.
1. One of the most noted of the early settlers of Kentucky was Simon Kenton, a man of much intelligence, resolute courage, and great strength. He was an inveterate smoker, and before starting on an expedition was always careful to take with him his pipe and plenty of tobacco. Food he could obtain without trouble, as long as he had his knife and gun, but not so the “fragrant weed.”
2. One thing, however, greatly bothered Simon, and that was an easy way of lighting his pipe. There were no matches in his day, for they did not come into use until the year 1833, so he had to depend on a flint and steel, and it was often difficult to ignite tobacco by that means.
3. By an act of kindness this difficulty was overcome. During the war of 1812, while a prisoner in the hands of the British at Detroit, Simon’s strength and courage, and the many famous exploits of which he was the her, excited the admiration of even his enemies. Noticing his fondness of smoking, and his trouble in lighting his pipe, an officer presented him with a powerful pocket burning-glass, by which he could easily bring the sun’s rays to a focus, and thus set fire to his tobacco. Simon was delighted with his present, and carried it wherever he went.
4. A year or two later he was again taken prisoner, this time by a party of Indians. As they both hated and feared him, they determined to put him to death. He was securely fastened to a stake driven into the ground, and a quantity of dry leaves and wood piled about him preparatory to burning him alive.
5. Our North American Indians have a sort of religious reverence for a pipe. It plays an important part in their councils; it is offered as a mark of friendship and a ratifier in a treaty of peace; it is among the sacred objects buried with the dead; a prisoner is never deprived of his pipe, nor is it ever taken from the bodies of the slain.
6. So when Simon asked the privilege of taking a last smoke, it was granted him. After securing his feet more firmly with leathern thongs—for they knew his prowess and daring too well to give him any advantage—they unbound his hands so that he might fill and light his pipe. This done, one of the Indians offered him a flint and steel, which he refused, to the great astonishment of his captors.
7. Then, with his hand extended towards the sun, as if beckoning it to his aid, he brought the burning-glass, which was clasped between the thumb and fore-finger, to a focus on the tobacco in his pipe. It quickly ignited, and clouds of smoke were soon curling up from his mouth.
8. The savages were awe-struck. The glass, being transparent, was not noticeable; and they evidently believed that the pipe was lighted simply by letting he sunlight pass through the circle formed by Simon’s thumb and finger. They gathered in an excited group and discussed the mystery, while he, all unconcerned, puffed away.
9. When the pipe was smoked out he refilled it. The red men became silent, and watched him as if he were a supernatural being. Again he held his hand towards the sun, this time repeating some gibberish, so as to mystify the Indians still more, and again began to blow out whiffs of smoke.
10. The Indians looked on him with superstitious awe. Had he vanished in a cloud of smoke, they would not have been more astonished. Kenton saw his advantage, and held the glass, first on one side, then on another, so as to kindle the leaves about him. The pointing to the leather thongs that bound him, he bade the chief loosen them.
11. The savage hesitated, but finally, as if not daring to disobey so great a magician, he stooped and cut the thongs. As he did so, Kenton raised his hand, and almost instantly a blistering point of fire fell on the red man’s wrist. With an “Ugh!” he jerked his hand away, but only to feel the fire upon his head.
12. This was too much for even an Indian’s nerve, and, with a cry of terror, he sprung into the forest, followed by the others of his band. When at a little distance they stopped to look back, and at that moment Kenton fixed his glass so that its focus centered on an open powder-horn one of the savages had dropped. Instantly there came a flash followed by a roar, the powder-horn disappeared, and the Indians, screaming, “The Fire Doctor! The Fire Doctor!” fled without waiting to see or hear more.
13. Simon gathered up his gun and other property, and made for home without delay. A few years later, when peace was restored, he met some of the same warriors at a council. They knew him at once, and watched him suspiciously, and when he approached to shake hands, showed great fear. They believed him to be a great “medicine-man,” and one who had the sun to fight his battles.
Explain the expressions “fragrant weed” (1); “awe-struck” (8); “an excited group” (8); “whiffs of smoke” (9); “vanished in a cloud of smoke” (10); “blistering point of fire” (11); “made for home” (13); “medicine-man” (13).
What words could be used instead of “noted” (1); “bothered” (2); “depend” (2); “deprived” (5); “thongs” (6); “mystify” (9); “delay” (13)?
Who was Simon Kenton? What bothered him in lighting his pipe? In what year did matches come into use? What had taken their place before that time? In what State is Detroit? With what did a British officer present Simon? How did the Indians propose to kill Simon? How did he frighten them from their purpose?
18. Farmer John
2. Roan; adj. reddish-brown.
3. Sti’fled; adj. choked; heavy.
4. Score; n. the number of twenty.
4. Lux’u-ry; n. free indulgence the pleasure of wealth affords.
5. Mort’gage; n. the conveyance of property as security for debt.
5. Till; v. to plow and prepare for seed.
6. In tas’sel; in flower; in bloom.
1. Home from his journey, Farmer John
Arrived this morning, safe and sound.
His black coat off, and his old clothes on,
“Now I’m myself!” says Farmer John;
And he thinks, “I’ll look around.”
Up leaps the dog: “Get down, you pup!
Are you so glad you would eat me up?”
The old cow lows at the gate, to greet him;
The horses prick up their ears, to meet him;
“Well, well, old Bay!
Ha, ha, old Gray!
Do you get good feed when I’m away?
2. “You haven’t a rib!” says Farmer John;
“The cattle are looking round and sleek;
The colt is going to be a roan,
And a beauty, too; how he has grown!
We’ll wean the calf next week.”
Says Farmer John, “When I’ve been off,
To call you again about the trough,
And watch you and pet you while you drink,
Is a greater comfort than you can think!”
And he pats old Bay,
And he slaps old Gray;—
“Ah, this is the comfort of going away.”
3. “For, after all,” says Farmer John,
“The best of a journey is getting home!
I’ve seen great sights,—but would I give
This spot, and the peaceful life I live,
For all their Paris and Rome?
These hills, for the city’s stifled air,
And big hotels, all bustle and glare,
Land all houses, and roads all stones,
That deafen your ears, and batter your bones?
Would you, old Bay?
Would you, old Gray?
That’s what one gets by going away!”
4. “There, Money is king,” says Farmer John,
“And Fashion is queen, and its very queer
To see how sometimes, while the man
Is raking and scraping all he can,
The wife spends, every year,
Enough, you would think, for a score of wives
to keep them in luxury all their lives!
The town is a perfect Babylon
To a quiet chap,” says Farmer John.
“You see, old Bay—
You see, old Gray,—
I’m wiser than when I went away.
5. “I’ve found out this,” says Farmer John,—
“That happiness is not bought or sold,
And clutched in a life of waste and hurry,
In nights of pleasure and days of worry;
And wealth isn’t all in gold,
Mortgage and stocks and ten per cent,—
But in simple ways, and sweet content,
Few wants, pure hopes, and noble ends,
Some land to till, and a few good friends,
Like you, old Bay,
And you, old Gray!
That’s what I’ve learned by going away.”
6. And a happy man is Farmer John,
Oh, a rich and happy man is he!
He sees the peas and pumpkins growing,
The corn in tassel, the buckwheat blowing,
And fruit on the vine and tree;
The large, kind oxen look their thanks
As he rubs the foreheads and strokes their flanks;
The doves light around him, and strut, and coo,
Says Farmer John, “I’ll take you too,—
And you, old Bay,
And you, old Gray,
Next time I travel so far away!”
Point out the words in the lesson made up of two words.
Tell of what two words these words are composed.
Write this lesson in prose, in the form of a story.