STORY HOUR READINGS
BY E. C. HARTWELL, M.A., M.PD.
SUPERINTENDENT OF SCHOOLS BUFFALO, NEW YORK
Illustrations by George Varian, F. Murch, Wilfred Jones M. M. Jamieson, and others
AMERICAN BOOK COMPANY NEW YORK CINCINNATI CHICAGO BOSTON ATLANTA
COPYRIGHT, 1921, BY AMERICAN BOOK COMPANY All rights reserved
W. P. II
MADE IN U. S. A.
This reader undertakes to provide desirable material for work in silent reading without losing sight of the other elements essential in a good reader for pupils in the seventh grade or in the first year of the junior high school.
One task before the teacher of Reading in this year is to foster, by stimulating material, a taste for good reading which it is to be hoped has at least been partially formed in the preceding grades. The selections in this volume are made with the purpose of giving the seventh-grade pupils such virile and enjoyable literature as will make them desire more of the same kind. The character and fitness of the material, not the date of its production, have governed the choice of the editor.
ARRANGEMENT BY GROUPS. There is an obvious advantage in grouping kindred reading materials in sections under such captions as "Adventure," "From Great Books," "Our Country," etc. Besides affording some elements of continuity, the plan offers opportunity for comparison and contrast of the treatment of similar themes. It also insures a massing of the effect of the idea for which the section stands. Secondarily, the section divisions break up the solid text, and because of this the pupils feel at frequent intervals that they have completed something definite.
The groupings make no pretense to being mutually exclusive. On occasion a selection may well be transferred to another section. For example, the Washington and Lincoln stories should be used in the proper season in the "Our Country" section although it is obvious that they belong in "Special Days." Teachers should have no hesitation in breaking across from one section to another when the occasion or the children's interest seems to warrant.
MECHANICAL FEATURES. Editor and publisher have spared no pains or expense to make this book attractive to children. The volume is not cumbersome or unwieldy in size. The length of line is that of the normal book with which they regularly will come into contact. The type is clean-cut and legible. Finally, enough white space has been left in the pages to give the book an "open," attractive appearance. No single item has so much to do with children's future attitude toward books as the appearance of their school Readers.
SOCIALIZED WORK. Opportunity for dramatization, committee work, and other team activity is presented repeatedly throughout this volume. Wherever the teacher can profitably get the pupils to work in groups she should take advantage of the cooperative spirit and do so.
CITIZENSHIP. This means more than the passing phase of so-called Americanization. It means a genuine love of country, a reverence for our pioneer fathers, a respect for law, order, and truth. This Reader is rich in patriotic content. It is hoped that the ethical element in the selections will be found to be forceful as well as pleasing. The book emphasizes throughout the importance of the individual and social virtues. If it can help teachers to make clean, upright, and loyal citizens of our great Republic it will not have been made in vain.
Mastery of the printed page is not the sole end and aim of Reading. It is hoped that the devices employed in this Reader, as well as the direction and suggestions in study materials contained in the volume, may assist in developing a genuine love of good books.
MANUAL. Valuable assistance in dealing with the material in this book is supplied by the Teachers' Manual, Story Hour Readings, Seventh and Eighth Years. This Manual consists of three parts:
I. An introductory article on the Teaching of Reading, which discusses Silent Reading (with detailed directions for speed tests), Oral Reading, Dramatization, Appreciative Reading, Memorizing, Word Study and Use of the Dictionary, Reading Outside of School, Use of Illustrative Material, and Correlation.
II. Detailed lesson plans for each selection in Story Hour Readings Seventh Year.
III. Detailed lesson plans for each selection in Story Hour Readings Eighth Year.
In addition to acknowledgments made in connection with material incorporated in this volume, thanks are due as follows for permissions to reprint:
To D. Appleton & Company, Publishers, for permission to use "A Battle with a Whale" from Frank T. Bullen's The Cruise of the Cachalot; to Thomas B. Harned, Literary Executor of Walt Whitman, for permission to reprint "O Captain! My Captain."
"The Stagecoach," from Mark Twain's Roughing It, is used by express permission of the Estate of Samuel L. Clemens, the Mark Twain Company, and Harper & Brothers, Publishers.
Selections by Emerson, Hawthorne, Holmes, Longfellow, Amy Lowell, James Russell Lowell, Sill, Thoreau, and Whittier are used by permission of and special arrangement with Houghton Mifflin Company, the authorized publishers of these authors.
Acknowledgment is made to the American Book Company for the use of selections by James Baldwin, John Esten Cooke, Edward Eggleston, Helene Guerber, Joel Chandler Harris, William Dean Howells, James Johonnot, Orison Swett Marden, W. F. Markwick and W. A. Smith, Frank R. Stockton, and Maurice Thompson.
PAGE A SHEAF OF LEGENDS
Ali Hafed's Quest Orison Swett Marden 13 How Kilhugh Rode to Arthur's Hall James Baldwin 18 The Gift of the White Bear George Webbe Dasent 25 The Story of Iron 31 The Wonderful Artisan James Baldwin 39 Charlemagne and Roland Helene A. Guerber 46 Keeping the Bridge Thomas Babington Macaulay 50
The Story of Molly Pitcher Frank R. Stockton 57 King Philip to the White Settlers Edward Everett 60 Pioneer Life in Ohio William Dean Howells 62 Witchcraft Nathaniel Hawthorne 70 Tea Parties in Old New York Washington Irving 70 A School of Long Ago Edward Eggleston 73 French Life in the Northwest James Baldwin 77 A Bear Story Maurice Thompson 82 A Patriot of Georgia Joel Chandler Harris 85 Song of the Pioneers W. D. Gallagher 87
Columbus and the Eclipse James Johonnot 91 First Thanksgiving Day Proclamation George Washington 93 Thanksgiving Day Proclamation, 1905 Theodore Roosevelt 93 Harvest Song James Montgomery 95 The Cratchits' Christmas Charles Dickens 96 The Holiday Spirit Emile Souvestre 101 Christmas in the Pines Meredith Nicholson 106 The New Year's Dinner Party Charles Lamb 108 Autobiography of Abraham Lincoln 111 O Captain! My Captain Walt Whitman 114 Washington's Greatest Battle Frederick Trever Hill 116 John James Audubon W. F. Markwick and W. A. Smith 122 Memorial Day, 1917 Woodrow Wilson 125
A Grandstand Seat in the Sky Howard Mingos 129 Prayer for the Pilot Cecil Roberts 137 A Battle with a Whale Frank T. Bullen 138 The Glove and the Lions Leigh Hunt 145 How Buck Won the Bet Jack London 147 The Loss of the Drake Charlotte M. Yonge 151 The Walrus Hunt Robert M. Ballantyne 155 The Rescue 158 Descending the Grand Canon 162 Night Fishing in the South Seas Frederick O'Brien 164 A Ballad of East and West Rudyard Kipling 168
UNDER THE OPEN SKY
A Night among the Pines Robert Louis Stevenson 177 Autumn on the Farm John Greenleaf Whittier 183 Goldenrod Elaine Goodale Eastman 186 The Palisades John Masefield 188 On the Grasshopper and Cricket John Keats 189 To a Waterfowl William Cullen Bryant 190 A Night in the Tropics Richard Henry Dana, Jr. 192 A Winter Ride Amy Lowell 193 The Snowstorm Ralph Waldo Emerson 194 Snow-Bound John Greenleaf Whittier 195 Tom Pinch's Ride Charles Dickens 198 Ode to a Butterfly Thomas Wentworth Higginson 201 In the Desert A. W. Kinglake 203 May is Building her House Richard Le Gallienne 207 The Daffodils William Wordsworth 208 The Falls of Lodore Robert Southey 210
STORIES THAT TEACH
An Adventure in Brotherhood 215 The Prayer Perfect James Whitcomb Riley 217 Get Out or Get in Line Elbert Hubbard 218 John Marshall of Virginia John Esten Cooke 224 Opportunity Edward Rowland Sill 227 Boy Wanted Dr. Frank Crane 228 John Littlejohn Charles Mackay 230 The Discontented Pendulum 232 Two Sides to Every Question 235 If I were a Boy Washington Gladden 237 The Lesson of the Water Mill Sarah Doudney 239 A Motto of Oxford 241 Sailing and Failing Hamilton W. Mabie 242 Use and Abuse of Time Archer Brown 243 Hidden Treasure Charles Reade 245 The Solitary Reaper William Wordsworth 249
IN GOOD HUMOR
The Stagecoach Mark Twain 253 The Chameleon James Merrick 261 The Pickwick Club on Ice Charles Dickens 263 Darius Green and his Flying Machine John Townsend Trowbridge 270 Aunt Doleful's Visit 279 Gradgrind's Idea of Education Charles Dickens 281 The Deacon's Masterpiece, or The Wonderful "One-Hoss Shay" Oliver Wendell Holmes 286 The Schoolmaster's Ride Washington Irving 291 Signing Petitions 296
IN TIME OF WAR
Great Little Rivers Frazier Hunt 299 The Burial of Sir John Moore Charles Wolfe 302 Lexington and Concord William Emerson 304 Herve Riel Robert Browning 307 The Song of the Camp Bayard Taylor 313 Cabin Boy and Admiral 315 Little Giffen Francis O. Ticknor 320 Marco Bozzaris Fitz-Greene Halleck 322 San Juan Hill General John J. Pershing 325 Burial of a Soldier in France Gerald M. Dwyer 329
America for Me Henry van Dyke 333 Warren's Address at the Battle of Bunker Hill John Pierpont 335 What is an American? Hector Saint Jean de Crevec[oe]ur 336 The Rising of '76 Thomas Buchanan Read 338 Our Own Country James Montgomery 342 Patrick Henry's Speech 343 Abraham Lincoln to Mrs. Bixby 347 The Flower of Liberty Oliver Wendell Holmes 348 True Patriotism Benjamin Harrison 350 America the Beautiful Katharine Lee Bates 352 O Beautiful! My Country! James Russell Lowell 353 The Problems of the Republic Theodore Roosevelt 354 The Meaning of Americanism Charles Evans Hughes 356 What Constitutes a State? William Jones 359 A Patriotic Creed Edgar A. Guest 360
FROM GREAT BOOKS
The Lists at Ashby Sir Walter Scott 363 The Twenty-Third Psalm The Bible 376 Doubting Castle John Bunyan 377 Christmas Eve at Fezziwig's Charles Dickens 384 Jean Valjean Meets the Bishop Victor Hugo 387 A Voyage to Lilliput Jonathan Swift 394 The Struggle in the Arena Henryk Sienkiewicz 405 Polonius's Advice to his Son William Shakespeare 413 Mercy William Shakespeare 414
A SHEAF OF LEGENDS
To every important race of people there has come down through the ages a fine heritage of story and song. Usually these tales are largely fiction and partially fact. They may be songs about heroes; stories to account for the existence of things; moral tales; or tales of pure imagination. Whatever they are, they preserve for us from the past the thoughts or the deeds of our early ancestors; and as tales they excite our interest because of their simplicity and straightforwardness.
ALI HAFED'S QUEST
BY ORISON SWETT MARDEN
Long, long ago, in the shadowy past, Ali Hafed dwelt on the shores of the River Indus, in the ancient land of the Hindus. His beautiful cottage, set in the midst of fruit and flower gardens, looked from the mountain side on which it stood over the broad expanse of the noble river. 5
Rich meadows, waving fields of grain, and the herds and flocks contentedly grazing on the pasture lands testified to the thrift and prosperity of Ali Hafed. The love of a beautiful wife and a large family of light-hearted boys and girls made his home an earthly paradise. Healthy, 10 wealthy, contented, rich in love and friendship, his cup of happiness seemed full to overflowing.
Happy and contented was the good Ali Hafed, when one evening a learned priest of Buddha, journeying along the banks of the Indus, stopped for rest and refreshment 15 at his home, where all wayfarers were hospitably welcomed and treated as honored guests.
After the evening meal, the farmer and his family with the priest in their midst gathered around the fireside, the chilly mountain air of the late autumn making a fire desirable. 20 The disciple of Buddha entertained his kind hosts with various legends and myths, and last of all with the story of the creation.
He told his wondering listeners how in the beginning the solid earth on which they lived was not solid at all, 25 but a mere bank of fog. "The Great Spirit," said he, "thrust his finger into the bank of fog and began slowly describing a circle in its midst, increasing the speed gradually until the fog went whirling round his finger so rapidly that it was transformed into a glowing ball of fire. Then the Creative Spirit hurled the fiery ball from his hand, and 5 it shot through the universe, burning its way through other banks of fog and condensing them into rain, which fell in great floods, cooling the surface of the immense ball.
"Flames then bursting from the interior through the cooled outer crust, threw up the hills and mountain ranges 10 and made the beautiful fertile valleys. In the flood of rain that followed this fiery upheaval, the substance that cooled very quickly formed granite, that which cooled less rapidly became copper, the next in degree cooled down into silver, and the last became gold. But the most beautiful 15 substance of all, the diamond, was formed by the first beams of sunlight condensed on the earth's surface.
"A drop of sunlight the size of my thumb," said the priest, holding up his hand, "is worth more than mines of gold. With one such drop," he continued, turning to Ali 20 Hafed, "you could buy many farms like yours; with a handful you could buy a province; and with a mine of diamonds you could purchase a whole kingdom."
The company parted for the night, and Ali Hafed went to bed, but not to sleep. All night long he tossed restlessly 25 from side to side, thinking, planning, scheming, how he could secure some diamonds. The demon of discontent had entered his soul, and the blessings and advantages which he possessed in such abundance seemed as by some malicious magic to have vanished utterly. Although his 30 wife and children loved him as before—although his farm, his orchards, his flocks and herds, were as real and prosperous as they had ever been—yet the last words of the priest, which kept ringing in his ears, turned his content into vague longings and blinded him to all that had hitherto made him happy.
Before dawn next morning the farmer, full of his purpose, 5 was astir. Rousing the priest, he eagerly inquired if he could direct him to a mine of diamonds.
"A mine of diamonds!" echoed the astonished priest. "What do you, who already have so much to be grateful for, want with diamonds?" 10
"I wish to be rich and place my children on thrones."
"All you have to do, then," said the Buddhist, "is to go and search until you find them."
"But where shall I go?" questioned the infatuated man.
"Go anywhere," was the vague reply; "north, south, 15 east, or west—anywhere."
"But how shall I know the place?" asked the farmer.
"When you find a river running over white sands between high mountain ranges, in these white sands you will find diamonds. There are many such rivers and many mines 20 of diamonds waiting to be discovered. All you have to do is start out and go somewhere—" and he waved his hand—"away, away!"
Ali Hafed's mind was fully made up. "I will no longer," he thought, "remain on a wretched farm, toiling day in and 25 day out for a mere subsistence, when acres of diamonds—untold wealth—may be had by him who is bold enough to seek them."
He sold his farm for less than half its value. Then, after putting his young family under the care of a neighbor, 30 he set out on his quest—a quest that was to cover many years and lands.
With high hopes and the coveted diamond mines beckoning in the far distance, Ali Hafed began his wanderings. During the first few weeks his spirits did not flag, nor did his feet grow weary. On and on he tramped, until he came to the Mountains of the Moon, beyond the bounds 5 of Arabia. Weeks stretched into months, and the wanderer often looked regretfully in the direction of his once-happy home. Still no gleam of waters glinting over white sands greeted his eyes. But on he went, into Egypt, through Palestine and other eastern lands, always looking 10 for the treasure he still hoped to find.
At last, after years of fruitless search, during which he had wandered north and south, east and west, hope left him. All his money was spent. He was starving and almost naked, and the diamonds—which had lured him 15 away from all that made life dear—where were they? Poor Ali Hafed never knew. He died by the wayside, never dreaming that the wealth for which he had sacrificed happiness and life might have been his had he remained at home. 20
* * * * *
"Here is a diamond! here is a diamond! Has Ali Hafed returned?" shouted an excited voice.
The speaker, no other than our old acquaintance, the Buddhist priest, was standing in the same room where years before he had told poor Ali Hafed how the world was 25 made and where diamonds were to be found.
"No, Ali Hafed has not returned," quietly answered his successor. "Neither is that which you hold in your hand a diamond. It is but a pretty black pebble I picked up in my garden." 30
"I tell you," said the priest excitedly, "this is a genuine diamond. I know one when I see it. Tell me how and where you found it."
"One day," replied the farmer slowly, "having led my camel into the garden to drink, I noticed, as he put his nose into the water, a sparkle of light coming from the 5 white sand at the bottom of the clear stream. Stooping down, I picked up the black pebble you now hold, guided to it by that crystal eye in the center, from which the light flashes so brilliantly."
"Why, thou simple one," cried the priest, "this is no 10 common stone, but a gem of the purest water. Come, show me where thou didst find it."
Together they fled to the spot where the farmer had found the "pebble," and turning over the white sands with eager fingers, they found, to their great delight, other 15 stones even more valuable and beautiful than the first. Then they extended their search, and, so the Oriental story goes, "every shovelful of the old farm, as acre after acre was sifted over, revealed gems with which to decorate the crowns of emperors and moguls." 20
—Stories from Life.
1. What is a legend? Distinguish between "legend" and "story." In what country is the scene of this legend laid?
2. What is your opinion of Ali Hafed? What happened to his family?
3. Do we have any Ali Hafeds in this country to-day? What do we mean by "Get-rich-quick" schemes? Illustrate.
4. If you were writing this story in these days of intensive farming, in what form would you have the "diamonds" come to the farmer?
HOW KILHUGH RODE TO ARTHUR'S HALL
By JAMES BALDWIN
This is a British legend of the days "when good King Arthur ruled the land." In his castle at Caerleon, according to legend, Arthur had gathered the most famous of his knights about the Round Table; and thither every aspiring knight journeyed in quest of adventure.
Prince Kilhugh blushed. The love of Olwen, the daughter of Thistlehair, filled his heart, although he had not heard her name before. His face flushed with happiness, and his eyes shone with joy.
"What is the matter, my son?" asked his father. "Why 5 are you so gay and glad?"
"Father," answered Kilhugh, "my stepmother says that no one but Olwen shall be my wife."
"Well," quoth the king, "I doubt not there will be trouble enough before that saying comes true. But do 10 not fear, my son. Thou art first cousin to King Arthur. Who but he should cut thy hair and be thy lord? Go to him, and crave this of him as a boon."
To Arthur's Hall, therefore, Prince Kilhugh made ready to go; and his father chose fifty of his bravest knights 15 to go with him, that he might present himself to King Arthur in a befitting manner.
* * * * *
So gayly the youth rode forth upon a steed of dappled gray, four summers old, with shell-shaped hoofs and well-knit limbs. His saddle was of burnished gold, his bridle 20 of shining gold chains. His saddle cloth was of purple silk, with four golden apples embroidered in the four corners.
The war horn slung over his shoulder was of ivory; the sword that hung by his side had a golden hilt and a two-edged 5 blade inlaid with a cross of gold that glittered like the lightning of heaven. His shoes, from the knee to the tip of the toe, were embossed with gold worth three hundred cattle; and his stirrups also were of gold.
In his hand he held two spears, with shafts of silver and 10 heads of tempered steel, and of an edge so sharp as to wound the wind and cause the blood to flow. Two white-breasted greyhounds bounded before his steed. Broad collars set with rubies were on their necks; and to and fro they 15 sprang, like two sea swallows sporting around him. The blades of reed grass bent not beneath him, so light was his courser's tread, as he journeyed toward the gate of Arthur's palace.
* * * * *
The Wide White Hall of Arthur had been built by Rearfort, 20 the architect. Eight and forty were the rafters of its roof. It would hold all Arthur's companions and his nobles, his warriors, his retainers, and his guests.
While Kilhugh was riding thither, the tables were set for the evening meal. The king, with his knights, his friends, and his attendants, were in their places around 25 the board. And the gate of the outer court was locked.
As the prince rode on, he beheld from afar the walls and towers of Arthur's Hall. When he drew rein within the shadow of the vast portal, he saw that the door was closed and barred, and an armed warrior, stalwart and strong, 30 was standing before it.
"O chieftain," he said, "is it King Arthur's custom to have a gatekeeper stationed here?"
"It is," replied the warrior sternly; "and if thou dost not hold thy peace, scant shall be thy welcome. I am Arthur's porter every New Year's Day, and that is why I 5 am here now."
"And who is the porter at other times?" asked Prince Kilhugh.
"At other times the gate is guarded by four lusty chieftains who serve under me," answered the Dusky Hero with 10 the Mighty Grasp. "The names of the first two are Blandmien and Speedguest. The third is Grumgruff, a man who never did anyone a favor in his life. The fourth is Rumbleroll, who goes on his head to save his feet. He neither holds it up to the sky like a man, nor stretches it 15 out toward the ground like a brute; but he goes tumbling about the floor, like nothing but a rolling stone."
"Unbar the door and let me in," commanded Kilhugh.
"Nay, that I will not," answered the Dusky Hero with the Mighty Grasp. 20
"And why not?" cried the prince.
"The knife is in the meat and the drink is in the horn, and there is revelry in Arthur's Hall; and no man may enter in save the son of a king from a friendly land. But never shall it be said that a wayfarer was turned harshly 25 away from Arthur's door. Food enough for thee and thy fifty men shall be prepared; collops shall be cooked and peppered for all. In the stables there is fodder for thy horses and food in plenty for thy dogs. And thou shalt fare as well in the guest chamber as in the hall; only be 30 content, and disturb not the king and his knights at the table."
"Nay, I will have nothing of all this," said young Kilhugh. "If thou wilt open the door, well and good. But if not, I will bring dishonor upon Arthur and shame upon thee. Here, on the spot where I stand, I will shout thrice and make the welkin ring. Sounds more deadly than 5 those three shouts have never been heard in this land. They shall resound from Land's End to Cold Blast Ridge in Ireland, and turn the hearts of youths and maidens cold as stone. Matrons shall grow wan and weakly and many a mother's child shall die of fright—so dreadful 10 will be my voice."
The Dusky Hero with the Mighty Grasp stood firm, although his heart misgave him. "No clamor that thou canst make," said he, "will ever admit thee here against King Arthur's wishes. However, I will go and tell him 15 thou art here."
Well might he be perturbed by Kilhugh's threat. For he remembered what had once happened in the days of King Lud, when all Britain had been shaken by a fearful shriek. At the sound of it, men had grown pale and feeble, 20 women listless and sad, and youths and maidens forlorn and woebegone. Beasts deserted their young ones, birds left their nestlings, trees cast off their fruit, the earth yielded no harvest.
* * * * *
Pondering upon these things, the Dusky Hero with the 25 Mighty Grasp strode into the hall. King Arthur saw him and called out, "Hast thou come with tidings from the door?"
The Dusky Hero bowed, and answered in stately phrase, becoming a knight of the Table Round: 30
"Half of my life is past, noble king, and half of thine. I have been with thee in Europe, in Asia, in Africa, and in the Island of Corsica. I was thy companion when thou didst spread the terror of the sword from Scandinavia to Spain. I fought by thy side in the Battle of Shades, when we brought away twelve hostages from the Dim Land under 5 the Sea. I have been in Jerusalem and in Castle Covert-and-Clearing, built all of dead men's bones. I have been in Turning Castle, and in the Castle of Riches; and there thou knowest we saw nine kings of nations, all comely men of noble mien. Yet, I protest and declare that I never 10 before saw a youth so handsome and dignified as that one who is now sitting astride his horse and waiting outside the door of this hall."
Then cried the king, "Thou didst walk hither to tell me of him; now hie thee back to him, running at full speed. 15 Invite him to come in; and let every man who sees the light, and every man who blinks the eye, stand ready to do him honor."
* * * * *
The Dusky Hero with the Mighty Grasp returned to the great door. He drew back bolt and bar, and set it 20 wide open before the prince and his train. The men at arms dismounted at the horse block in the courtyard, but Kilhugh still sat upon his steed and rode into the Hall.
"Hail to thee, King Arthur!" he cried. "I greet thee and thy guests and thy companions and thy warriors. 25 My greeting is to the lowest as well as to the highest of all that have a seat within this Hall. May thy name, King Arthur, and thy fame and thy renown be forever held in glorious memory throughout the length and the breadth of this land!" 30
"Hail to thee, noble youth!" returned Arthur. "Thou art right welcome. Here is a place for thee between two of my knights. Sit down, and my minstrels will play for thee."
But Kilhugh made answer: "I have not come hither, sire, to eat and drink, but to crave of thee a boon. If thou wilt grant it me, I will do thee such service as thou mayest 5 command; and I will carry the praise of thy bounty and thy power into every land. But if thou dost refuse, I will spread ill reports of thee to the four quarters of the world."
Then King Arthur was greatly pleased, and he said: "Ask thy boon, young chieftain. Thou shalt have whatever 10 thy tongue may name, as far as the wind dries and the rain moistens and the sun revolves and the sea encircles and the earth extends. Thou shalt have anything that is mine, except my ship that bears me over the sea, and the mantle in which I can walk unseen, and my good sword, 15 and my keen lance, and my shield, and my gleaming dagger, and Guinevere my wife. Ask what thou wilt."
"My request is, that thou wilt cut my hair," answered Kilhugh.
"Thy request is granted," quoth the king. 20
Then Arthur called for a golden comb and a pair of scissors with silver loops. And he combed the hair of the prince, as he sat upon his steed, and cut it front and back.
"Now tell me thy name," he said.
"My name is Kilhugh," replied the prince. "My father 25 is Prince Kilith, and my mother was a sister of the fair Ygerne."
"Then we are cousins," cried Arthur, "and I give thee leave to ask another boon. Ask what thou wilt." "Promise me, for the honor of thy kingdom, to grant 30 my boon," said Kilhugh.
"Then do I crave of thee to obtain for me Olwen, the daughter of Thistlehair, chief of the Giants, to be my wife. . . . For the sake of the daughters of the Island of the Mighty, I crave thy help to seek this maiden. For the sake of Guinevere and of her sister; for the sake of Lynette 5 of the Magic Ring; for the sake of Cordelia the daughter of King Lear, the loveliest maiden in this island; and for the sake of Iseult la Belle, and of Elaine, and of Angarad of the Golden Hand—for the sake of these and many others, I crave thy help." 10
Then said Arthur, "O prince and cousin, I have never heard of this maiden, Olwen; I have never heard of her kindred. But I will send messengers to seek her; only grant them time to find her and return."
"To-day is New Year's Day," answered the prince. 15 "I give them from this hour till the last day of the year."
And having said these words, he dismounted from his steed and went and sat by King Arthur's side in the midst of the heroes of the Table Round.
—Fifty Famous Rides and Riders.
1. This is a capital story in its representation of the knight in olden days. Do you think Kilhugh would be an agreeable fellow to have in your class? Give reasons for your answer.
2. What other legends of Arthur do you know?
3. The Arthurian tales have long furnished English writers with themes for stories and songs. Tennyson's Idylls of the King, for example, is a group of narrative poems describing the adventures of King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table.
THE GIFT OF THE WHITE BEAR
BY GEORGE WEBBE DASENT
A long time ago there lived in Iceland a man whose name was Audun. His means were small, but everybody knew of his goodness. In order to see the world and to add to his wealth, he once sailed to Greenland with a sea captain named Thorir. Before he went, he gave everything 5 that he had to his mother—and this was not much.
In Greenland Audun bought a white bear that was well tamed and trained—and it was the greatest treasure of a bear that had ever been thought of. The next summer Thorir sailed back to Norway, and Audun went with him, 10 taking the bear.
Now Audun had made up his mind to give the bear to Sweyn, the king of Denmark; and so, leaving Thorir, he made his way south to the Cattegat. While he was waiting for some vessel that would carry him across the channel, it 15 so happened that Harold, the king of Norway, came also to the same place.
Of course some one soon told King Harold about the Icelander who had lately come from Greenland with a wonderful white bear, and he at once sent for Audun. 20
"I have heard about your white bear," said Harold, "and I wish to buy it."
"I will not sell it," answered Audun.
"But I will pay you twice as much as you gave for it," said the king. 25
"Not for any price will I sell it," said the Icelander.
"Then will you give it to me?" asked the king.
"No, my lord, I will not do that," answered Audun.
"What, then, will you do with it?" asked the king.
Audun answered, "I have made up my mind to take it to Denmark and give it to King Sweyn, for he is also the 5 king of my own country."
Then Harold spoke up sharply: "Don't you know, my fellow, that there is war between Norway and Denmark, and between myself and your King Sweyn? Don't you know that I have the power to prevent you from ever 10 getting to his land?"
Audun answered, "I know that you have the power, and that all rests with you. But I will consent to nothing save to do as I have told you."
The king sat in thought for a moment and then said, 15 "Well, I see no reason why you should not do as you please in this matter. But promise me that when you come this way again, you will tell me how King Sweyn rewarded you for the beast."
"I give you my word to do that," answered Audun. 20
Then, leading the bear behind him, he went away. But it was a long time before he could find any means to cross over into Denmark, and when at last he set foot upon the shores of that country he had not even a penny with which to buy food. Both he and the bear were starving, and it 25 was a long way to the place where the king was staying.
In his distress, Audun went to a rich man named Auki and begged for food for himself and his bear.
"What are you going to do with the beast?" asked Auki. 30
"Give him to King Sweyn," answered the Icelander.
"And how much do you expect to receive for him?"
"Only so much as the king in his bounty wishes to give."
Then the rich man answered, "If you will give me one half of the bear, I will feed you both."
And to this Audun made agreement, for he was almost dead of hunger and so was the bear. 5
Then the Icelander and the rich man went on, leading the bear, until they came to King Sweyn's house. The king greeted Auki in a friendly manner, and turning to Audun, said, "You are a stranger to me. Pray tell me whence you have come." 10
"I am from Iceland," answered Audun, "and have but lately been to Greenland. My errand here is to give you a white bear which I bought in Greenland. But my necessities have obliged me to part with one half of the beast, and I can only beg of you to accept the other half." 15 And then, after much questioning, he told the whole story.
The king turned to the rich man, who was standing by, and asked, "Is this true, Auki?"
"It is, my lord," answered Auki.
Then the king was angry and sent the rich man home, 20 empty-handed and sorrowful. But he said to the Icelander, "I thank you for the rare and wonderful gift which you have brought me. Stay here in my house for a while."
So Audun dwelt for some time with the king's household, and no man was more faithful, more honest, or more 25 brave than he. Many deeds of courage did he perform, and many and worthy were his services. All men liked him, and the king was most gracious to him; but his heart turned always toward Iceland and his poor mother whom he had left behind. 30
One day when the springtide was drawing on, the king spoke to the Icelander and said: "Audun, I have never yet given you anything for the white bear. I have a mind to make you one of my chief officers, so that you shall always be near me."
And Audun answered, "I thank you, my lord, with all my heart. But far away over the northern seas there is a 5 poor woman who is my mother. I fear that by this time she is in want; for although I left her all that I had, it was not much. I cannot bear to sit here in ease and honor while she has not enough to keep hunger away. And so I have set my heart on sailing for Iceland." 10
"There speaks a good man and true," cried the king. "You shall do as you most desire; but wait a little while till a ship is ready."
So Audun waited. And one day when spring was at its best, King Sweyn went with him down to the waterside, 15 where many men were busy freighting ships for foreign lands. They walked till they came to a merchant vessel of fine size.
"What do you think of this ship, Audun?" asked the king. 20
"She is fine enough, surely," answered the Icelander.
"Well," said the king, "I will now repay you for the bear. This ship and all the goods on board of it are yours."
Audun thanked the king as well as he could. And when 25 the day came for the ship to sail, the two walked down to the waterside again.
"I have heard much of the perils of the sea," said King Sweyn, "and if this fair ship should be wrecked, all your goods will doubtless be lost and little will be left to show 30 that you have met the king of Denmark."
As he said this, the king put into Audun's hand a leather bag, full of silver, saying, "Take this, and even if your ship goes down, you will not be entirely penniless."
Audun was so filled with gratitude that he could not speak. But the king had still another surprise for him. He drew a ring of gold, very costly, from his arm and put 5 it upon the arm of the Icelander.
"Take this," he said. "Even though you should lose ship and goods and money, you will still not be penniless, for the gold will be around your arm."
What could Audun do? What could he say? 10
The king shook his hand at parting, and said: "I have this to ask of you: Keep the gold ring on your arm and do not part with it on any account, unless it be to some great man to whom you feel yourself bound to give your best treasure in return for a great favor and much goodness. 15 And now, farewell, and may good luck follow your voyage."
Then Audun, in his fair, rich ship, put to sea.
On his way to Iceland he stopped for a time in a haven of Norway, where he heard that King Harold was holding his court. He was desirous of seeing the king, as he had 20 given his word.
King Harold remembered him well and received him kindly.
"Sit here and tell me how it fared with you in Denmark," he said. 25
Audun told him a part of his story.
"But how did King Sweyn repay you for the white bear?" asked Harold.
"In this wise, my lord," answered Audun: "He took it and thanked me when I offered it." 30
"I would have repaid you as well myself," said Harold, "What more did he give you?"
"He asked me to abide in his house, and he gave me his friendship. He offered me still greater honor if I would stay longer with him."
"That was good; but I would have done as much. He must have given you something more." 5
"Yes. He gave me a merchant ship filled with rich goods for trade in northern ports."
"That was a noble gift," said the king; "but I would have equaled it. Did he give you anything more?"
Audun answered, "Yes, he gave me a leather bag full of 10 silver; for he said that if the ship and her cargo should be lost in the sea, yet would I not go penniless."
"That was nobly thought of," said Harold; "and it is more than I would have done. But what else did he give?"
Then Audun took the gold ring from his arm and put 15 it upon King Harold's arm, saying, "He gave me as a farewell gift this priceless ring; and he bade me never to part with it save to some great man to whom I felt myself indebted for his goodness. And now I have found that man. For it was in your power to take away not only the bear 20 but my life also, and yet you allowed me to go in peace to Denmark."
The king looked at the ring and then at the man; for both were of very great worth. "I thank you, Audun," he said; and they had much pleasant talk before they parted. 25
And when Audun at length came with his ship to Iceland, everybody welcomed him as the luckiest man in the world; and he made his poor mother comfortable for the rest of her life.
1. What was the noblest thing Audun did? Why do you admire the man? What in the story indicates its old age?
2. Sketch the relative locations of Iceland, Norway, and Denmark, showing a possible return course for Audun.
THE STORY OF IRON
This is one of the tales from the Kalevala ("Home of the Heroes"), a group of legends from Finland. These tales were sung in verse very similar to that which Longfellow used in Hiawatha. The following is a prose translation of one of the popular myths.
The first of all mothers was Air, and she had three daughters. Of these three maidens there is much to be said. They were as lovely as the rainbow after a storm; they were as fair as the full moon shining above the mountains. They walked with noiseless feet among 5 the clouds and showered gifts upon the earth. They sent the refreshing rain, the silent dew, and the nipping frost, each in its season. They gave life to the fields, and strength to the mountains, and grandeur to the sea. And because of their bounty the earth was glad and the stars twinkled 10 for joy.
"What more can we do to make the land fit for men to dwell in? What other gift have we to bestow?" asked the eldest of the sisters.
And the youngest said, "Let us send down iron—iron 15 of which tools may be made, iron of which sharp weapons may be shaped. For without tools man will not be able to plow, to reap, or to build; and without weapons he cannot defend himself against the savage beasts of the forest." 20
So when the sun was about going down, the sisters went forth in trailing robes of purple and crimson and gold; and in their hands they bore mighty vessels of foaming milk. The eldest sprinkled red milk in the brooks and marshes and along the banks of the rivers. The middle one scattered white milk on the wooded hills and the stony mountains. The youngest showered blue milk in the valleys and by the gray seashore. And, on the morrow, where 5 the red milk had been sprinkled, red and brittle ore of iron flecked the ground; where the white milk had been scattered, powdery ore of a yellow hue abounded; and where the blue milk had been showered, flaky masses of crude iron, tough and dark, lay hidden beneath the soil. 10
Thus came Iron into the world—Iron, the youngest of three brothers. Next older than he was Fire, a raging, dangerous fellow when free, but loving and faithful when held in bonds. Older still was Water, terrible in strength but, when not aroused, as gentle as a mother's caress. 15
Years upon years went by, and at length one day Iron set out to visit his brothers. He found Water at home in the deep sea, and by him he was welcomed kindly enough. But when he climbed a mountain to see his second brother he had quite another reception. Fire was in a raging 20 mood. The terrible fellow leaped and roared and stretched out his long red fingers as though he would devour his visitor.
Iron was so terrified that he turned and fled down the steep slopes, never stopping nor pausing to look behind. 25 He ran on, hiding in clefts and chasms, creeping under rocks, and lurking in the dry beds of mountain torrents. When by and by he reached the level plain, he glanced backward. The hills and the whole mountain top were aflame. 30
Wild with terror he hurried on, hiding himself in the woods and under the roots of trees and resting at last in reedy marshes where swans build their nests and wild geese rear their young.
For ages and ages—nobody knows how many—Iron lay hidden in bogs and forests and lonely caverns. Fear of his raging brother made him lurk in lonely places, made 5 him cover up his face. Lazy bears went ambling through the rocky places; wolves rushed madly over the oozy marshlands; and timid deer ran and leaped among the trees. In time the hiding places of Iron were uncovered. Where the paws of bears had plodded often, where the feet 10 of wolves had pattered, where the sharp hoofs of deer had trodden, there the timid metal, red, gray, yellow, black, peeped shyly out.
At length into that same land there came a skillful Smith. He carried a hammer of stone in one hand and tongs of 15 bronze in the other, and a song of peace was upon his lips. On a green hillock, where the south wind blew, he built him a smithy, and in it he placed the tools of his craft. His anvil was a block of gray granite; his forge was carefully built of sand and clay; his bellows was made of the 20 skins of mountain goats sewn together.
The Smith heaped live coals in his forge and blew with his bellows until the flames leaped up, roaring and sparkling, and the smoke rose in dense clouds over the roof of the smithy. "This forge will do its work well," he said. Then 25 he checked the bellows and smothered the flames and raked ashes upon the fire until the red coals slumbered unseen at the mouth of the forge.
Out into the forest the Smith wandered. Closely he scanned the hillsides and the boggy thickets and the paths 30 among the trees. And there, where the bears had trailed and the wolves had rushed and the deer had left their footprints, he found ruddy Iron, dusky Iron, yellow ore of Iron, peeping, trembling, hiding. The heart of the Smith was glad. His eyes danced merrily, and he sang a song of magic to the timid metal:
"Iron, Iron, hearken while I call you! 5 Let no false and foolish fears appal you, Come from out the crevices that hide you, Leave the worthless stones that are beside you, Leave the earth that lies around, above you, And come with me, for I do dearly love you." 10
Iron moved not, but timidly answered, "I dare not leave my hiding places; for Fire, my brother, waits to devour me. He is strong and fierce. He has no pity."
The Smith shook his head and made reply, still singing:
"No! your brother does not wish to harm you— 15 Willingly he never would alarm you. With his glowing arms he would caress you, Make you pure and with his kisses bless you. So come with me, my smithy waits to greet you; In my forge your brother waits to meet you— 20 Waits to throw his loving arms around you, Glad indeed that thus, at last, he's found you."
These words made Iron feel much braver; and they were spoken in tones so sweet and persuasive that he was almost minded to obey without another word. But he asked, 25 "Why should I leave these places where I have rested so long? What will become of me after I have made friends with Fire?"
Again the Smith replied to the query of Iron in a magic song:
"Come with me, for kindly we will treat you. On my anvil gently will I beat you; With my tongs, then, deftly will I hold you; 5 With my hammer I will shape and mold you Into forms so fair that all will prize you, Forms so rare that none will e'er despise you: Axes, knives (so men will wish to use you), Needles, pins (so women, too, will choose you). 10 Come with me, your brother will not harm you, Come with me, my smithy sure will charm you."
Hearing this, Iron came out of his lurking places and without more ado bashfully followed the cunning Smith. But no sooner was he in the smithy than he felt himself 15 a prisoner. The tongs of bronze gripped him and thrust him into the forge. The bellows roared, the Smith shouted, and Fire leaped joyfully out of the ashes and threw his arms around his helpless younger brother. And bashful, bashful Iron turned first red and then white and finally 20 became as soft as dough and as radiant as the sun.
Then the tongs of bronze drew him forth from the flames, and twirled him in the air, and threw him upon the anvil; and the hammer of stone beat him fiercely again and again until he shrieked with pain. 25
"Oh, spare me! spare me!" he cried. "Do not deal so roughly with me. Let me go back to my lonely hiding places and lie there in peace as in the days of old."
But the tongs pinched him worse than before, and the hammer beat him still harder, and the Smith answered: 30
"Not so, not so! Be not so cowardly. We do not hurt you; you are only frightened. Be brave and I will shape you into things of great use to men. Be brave and you shall rule the world."
Then in spite of Iron's piteous cries, he kept on pounding and twisting and turning and shaping the helpless metal 5 until at length it was changed into many forms of use and beauty—rings, chains, axes, knives, cups, and curious tools. But it was so soft, after being thus heated and beaten, that the edges of the tools were quickly dulled. Try as he might, the Smith did not know how to give the 10 metal a harder temper.
One day a honeybee strolled that way. It buzzed around the smithy and then lit on a clover blossom by the door.
"O bee," cried the busy Smith, "you are a cunning 15 little bird, and you know some things better than I know them. Come now, and help me temper this soft metal. Bring me a drop of your honey; bring the sweet liquor which you suck from the meadow flower; bring the magic dew of the wildwood. Give me all such things that I may 20 make a mixture to harden Iron."
The bee answered not—it was too busy with its own affairs. It gathered what honey it could from the blossom and then flew swiftly away.
Under the eaves above the smithy door an idler was 25 sitting—a mischief-making hornet who heard every word that the Smith said.
"I will help him make a mixture," this wicked insect muttered. "I will help him to give Iron another temper."
Forthwith he flew to the thorny thickets and the miry 30 bogs and the fever-breeding marshes, to gather what evils he might. Soon he returned with an arm load—the poison of spiders, the venom of serpents, the miasmata of swamps, the juice of the deadly nightshade. All these he cast into the tub of water wherein the Smith was vainly trying to temper Iron.
The Smith did not see him, but he heard him buzzing 5 and supposed it was the honeybee with sweets from the meadow flowers.
"Thank you, pretty little bird," he said. "Now I hope we shall have a better metal. I hope we shall make edges that will cut and not be dulled so easily." 10
Thereupon he drew a bar of the metal, white hot, from the forge. He held it, hissing and screeching, under the water into which the poisons had been poured. Little thought he of the evil that was there. He heard the hornet humming and laughing under the eaves. 15
"Tiny honeybee," he said, "you have brought me much sweetness. Iron tempered with your honey will be sweet although sharp. Nothing shall be wrought of it that is not beautiful and helpful and kind."
He drew the metal from the tub. He thrust it back 20 among the red coals. He plied the bellows and the flames leaped up. Then, when the metal was glowing again, he laid it on the anvil and beat it with strong, swift strokes; and as he worked he sang:
"Ding! Ding! Ding-a-ling, ding! 25 Of Iron, sharp Iron, strong Iron, I sing, Of Iron my servant, of Iron my king— Ding! Ding-a-ling, ding!"
Forthwith Iron leaped up, angry and biting and fierce. He was not a soft and ductile metal as before, but Iron 30 hardened into tough blue steel. Showers of sparks flew from him, snapping, burning, threatening; and from among them sprang swords and spears and battle-axes, and daggers keen and pointed. Out of the smithy and out through the great world these cruel weapons raced, slashing and clashing, thrusting and cutting, raging and killing, and 5 carrying madness among men.
The wicked hornet, idling under the eaves, rejoiced at the mischief he had wrought. But the Smith was filled with grief, and the music of his anvil became a jangling discord. 10
"Oh, Iron," he cried, "it was not for this that I caused you to leave your hiding places in the hills and bogs! The three sisters intended that you should be a blessing to mankind; but now I greatly fear that you will become a curse." 15
At that moment the honeybee, laden with the sweets of field and wood, came buzzing into the smithy. It whispered hopefully into the ear of the Smith: "Wait until my gifts have done their work."
—Retold from the Kalevala.
1. Find on a map the country from which this legend comes.
2. According to this story, where did iron come from? Why was it fearful of fire? Who finally enticed it into the fire's embrace?
3. Why did the smith cease to be happy? What did the honeybee have in mind in the last sentence? Show how the honeybee's prophecy has come true, by naming the peaceful uses of iron.
4. A good description of an ancient forge is given. Of what did it consist? How is iron handled to-day in modern iron foundries and steel mills?
THE WONDERFUL ARTISAN
BY JAMES BALDWIN
There are enough Greek legends to fill several volumes. They relate the doings of the gods and heroes of ancient Greece, and endeavor to account for the origin of plants and animals and the founding of cities. This story no doubt contains many facts but it is chiefly fiction.
While Athens was still only a small city there lived within its walls a man named Daedalus (dĕd'a-lŭs), who was the most skillful worker in wood and stone and metal that had ever been known. It was he who taught the people how to build better houses and how to hang 5 their doors on hinges and how to support the roofs with pillars and posts. He was the first to fasten things together with glue; he invented the plumb line and the auger; and he showed seamen how to put up masts in their ships and how to rig the sails to them with ropes. He 10 built a stone palace for AEgeus, the young king of Athens, and beautified the Temple of Athena which stood on the great rocky hill in the middle of the city.
Daedalus had a nephew named Perdix, whom he had taken when a boy to teach the trade of builder. But 15 Perdix was a very apt learner and soon surpassed his master in the knowledge of many things. His eyes were ever open to see what was going on about him, and he learned the lore of the fields and the woods. Walking one day by the sea he picked up the backbone of a great fish, and from 20 it he invented the saw. Seeing how a certain bird carved holes in the trunks of trees, he learned how to make and use the chisel. Then he invented the wheel which potters use in molding clay; and he made of a forked stick the first pair of compasses for drawing circles; and he studied out many other curious and useful things.
Daedalus was not pleased when he saw that the lad was 5 so apt and wise, so ready to learn, and so eager to do.
"If he keeps on in this way," he murmured, "he will be a greater man than I; his name will be remembered and mine will be forgotten."
Day after day, while at his work, Daedalus pondered over 10 this matter, and soon his heart was filled with hatred towards young Perdix. One morning when the two were putting up an ornament on the outer wall of Athena's temple, Daedalus bade his nephew go out on a narrow scaffold which hung high over the edge of the rocky cliff 15 whereon the temple stood. Then when the lad obeyed, it was easy enough, with a blow of a hammer, to knock the scaffold from its fastenings.
Poor Perdix fell headlong through the air, and he would have been dashed in pieces upon the stones at the foot of 20 the cliff had not kind Athena seen him and taken pity upon him. While he was yet whirling through mid-air she changed him into a partridge, and he flitted away to the hills to live forever in the woods and fields which he loved so well. And to this day, when summer breezes 25 blow and the wild flowers bloom in meadow and glade, the voice of Perdix may still sometimes be heard calling to his mate from among the grass and reeds or amid the leafy underwoods.
* * * * *
As for Daedalus, when the people of Athens heard of his 30 dastardly deed they were filled with grief and rage—grief for young Perdix, whom all had learned to love; rage towards the wicked uncle who loved only himself. At first they were for punishing Daedalus with the death which he so richly deserved, but when they remembered what he had done to make their homes pleasanter and their lives 5 easier they allowed him to live; and yet they drove him out of Athens and bade him never return.
There was a ship in the harbor just ready to start on a voyage across the sea, and in it Daedalus embarked with all his precious tools and his young son Icarus (ĭk'a-rŭs). 10 Day after day the little vessel sailed slowly southward, keeping the shore of the mainland always upon the right. It passed Tr[oe]zen and the rocky coast of Argos and then struck boldly out across the sea.
At last the famous Island of Crete was reached, and 15 there Daedalus landed and made himself known; and the King of Crete, who had already heard of his wondrous skill, welcomed him to his kingdom, and gave him a home in his palace, and promised that he should be rewarded with great riches and honor if he would but stay and practice 20 his craft there as he had done in Athens.
Now the name of the King of Crete was Minos. His grandfather, whose name was also Minos, was the son of Europa, a young princess whom a white bull, it was said, had brought on his back across the sea from distant Asia. 25 This elder Minos had been accounted the wisest of men—so wise, indeed, that Jupiter chose him to be one of the judges of the Lower World. The younger Minos was almost as wise as his grandfather; and he was brave and farseeing and skilled as a ruler of men. He had made all 30 the islands subject to his kingdom, and his ships sailed into every part of the world and brought back to Crete the riches of foreign lands. So it was not hard for him to persuade Daedalus to make his home with him and be the chief of his artisans.
And Daedalus built for King Minos a most wonderful palace with floors of marble and pillars of granite; and 5 in the palace he set up golden statues which had tongues and could talk; and for splendor and beauty there was no other building in all the wide earth that could be compared with it.
There lived in those days among the hills of Crete a 10 terrible monster called the Minotaur (mĭn'ō-tor), the like of which has never been seen from that time until now. This creature, it was said, had the body of a man but the face and head of a wild bull and the fierce nature of a mountain lion. The people of Crete would not have killed 15 him if they could; for they thought that the Mighty Folk who lived with Jupiter on the mountain top had sent him among them and that these beings would be angry if anyone should take his life. He was the pest and terror of all the land. Where he was least expected, there he was 20 sure to be; and almost every day some man, woman, or child was caught and devoured by him.
"You have done so many wonderful things," said the king to Daedalus, "can you not do something to rid the land of this Minotaur?" 25
"Shall I kill him?" asked Daedalus.
"Ah, no!" said the king. "That would only bring greater misfortune upon us."
"I will build a house for him then," said Daedalus, "and you can keep him in it as a prisoner." 30
"But he may pine away and die if he is penned up in prison," said the king.
"He shall have plenty of room to roam about," said Daedalus; "and if you will only now and then feed one of your enemies to him, I promise you that he shall live and thrive."
So the wonderful artisan brought together his workmen, 5 and they built a marvelous house with so many rooms in it and so many winding ways that no one who went far into it could ever find his way out again; and Daedalus called it the Labyrinth and cunningly persuaded the Minotaur to go inside it. The monster soon lost his way 10 among the winding passages, but the sound of his terrible bellowings could be heard day and night as he wandered back and forth vainly trying to find some place to escape.
* * * * *
Not long after this it happened that Daedalus was guilty of a deed which angered the king very greatly; and had 15 not Minos wished him to build other buildings for him, he would have put him to death and served him right.
"Hitherto," said the king, "I have honored you for your skill and rewarded you for your labor. But now you shall be my slave and shall serve me without hire and without 20 any word of praise."
Then he gave orders to the guards at the city gates that they should not let Daedalus pass out at any time, and he set soldiers to watch the ships that were in port so that he could not escape by sea. But although the wonderful 25 artisan was thus held as a prisoner, he did not build any more buildings for King Minos; he spent his time in planning how he might regain his freedom.
"All my inventions," he said to his son Icarus, "have hitherto been made to please other people; now I will 30 invent something to please myself."
So through all the day he pretended to be planning some great work for the king, but every night he locked himself up in his chamber and wrought secretly by candlelight. By and by he had made for himself a pair of strong wings, and for Icarus another pair of smaller ones; and then, 5 one midnight, when everybody was asleep, the two went out to see if they could fly. They fastened the wings to their shoulders with wax, and then sprang up into the air. They could not fly very far at first, but they did so well that they felt sure of doing much better in time. 10
The next night Daedalus made some changes in the wings. He put on an extra strap or two; he took out a feather from one wing and put a new feather into another; and then he and Icarus went out into the moonlight to try them again. They did finely this time. They flew up to 15 the top of the king's palace, and then they sailed away over the walls of the city and alighted on the top of a hill. But they were not ready to undertake a long journey yet; and so just before daybreak, they flew back home. Every fair night after that they practiced with their wings, and 20 at the end of a month they felt as safe in the air as on the ground and could skim over the hilltops like birds.
Early one morning, before King Minos had risen from his bed, they fastened on their wings, sprang into the air, and flew out of the city. Once fairly away from the island 25 they turned towards the west, for Daedalus had heard of an island named Sicily which lay hundreds of miles away, and he had made up his mind to seek a new home there.
All went well for a time, and the two bold flyers sped swiftly over the sea, skimming along only a little above 30 the waves, and helped on their way by the brisk east wind. Towards noon the sun shone very warm, and Daedalus called out to the boy, who was a little behind him, and told him to keep his wings cool and not fly too high. But the boy was proud of his skill in flying, and as he looked up at the sun he thought how nice it would be to soar like it high above the clouds in the blue depths of the sky. 5
"At any rate," said he to himself, "I will go up a little higher. Perhaps I can see the horses which draw the sun car, and perhaps I shall catch sight of their driver, the mighty sun master himself."
So he flew up higher and higher, but his father, who was 10 in front, did not see him. Pretty soon, however, the heat of the sun began to melt the wax with which the boy's wings were fastened. He felt himself sinking through the air; the wings had become loosened from his shoulders. He screamed to his father, but it was too late. Daedalus 15 turned just in time to see Icarus fall headlong into the waves. The water was very deep there, and the skill of the wonderful artisan could not save his child. He could only look with sorrowing eyes at the unpitying sea, and fly on alone to distant Sicily. There, men say, he lived for 20 many years, but he never did any great work nor built anything half so marvelous as the Labyrinth of Crete. And the sea in which poor Icarus was drowned was called forever afterward by his name, the Icarian Sea.
—Old Greek Stories.
1. Daedalus's adventures can be divided into three sections. Tell what happened in each of the three episodes.
2. For other interesting Greek legends read Baldwin's Old Greek Stories or Guerber's Myths of Ancient Greece and Rome.
CHARLEMAGNE AND ROLAND
BY HELENE A. GUERBER
A series of legends centers about the great emperor of France, Charlemagne (shar'lē-mān), and his nephew Roland. Charlemagne's sister Bertha had married an obscure knight, Milon, and had thus incurred the anger of her brother. The following story suggests the reconciliation of the two through the forwardness of Master Roland. Roland came to be known as the greatest knight of continental Europe in the Middle Ages.
Read the selection with a view to understanding the characters of the two chief personages.
Numerous stories are told of the way in which Roland first attracted the attention of the great emperor, his uncle. Of these the most popular is that which relates how Milon, attempting to ford a stream, had been carried away and drowned, while his poor half-famished 5 wife at home was thus left to perish of hunger. Seeing the signs of such acute distress around him, the child went boldly to the banqueting hall near by, where Charlemagne and his lords were feasting. Casting his eyes round for a suitable dish to plunder, Roland caught up a platter of 10 food and fled. His fearless act greatly amused the emperor, who forbade his servants to interfere. Thus the boy carried off his prize in triumph, and soon set it before the startled eyes of his mother.
Excited by the success of his raid, a few minutes later the 15 child reentered the hall, and with equal coolness laid hands upon the emperor's cup, full of rich wine. Challenged by Charlemagne, the boy then boldly declared that he wanted the meat and wine for his mother, a lady of high degree. In answer to the emperor's bantering questions, he declared that he was his mother's cupbearer, her page, and her gallant knight, which answers so amused Charlemagne 5 that he sent for her. He saw her to be his own sister, and, stricken with remorse, he asked for her forgiveness and treated her with kindness as long as she lived, and took her son into his service.
Another legend relates that Charlemagne, hearing that 10 the robber knight of the Ardennes had a priceless jewel set in his shield, called all his bravest noblemen together, and bade them sally forth separately, with only a page as escort, in quest of the knight. Once found, they were to challenge him in true knightly fashion, and at the point of 15 the lance win the jewel he wore. A day was appointed when, successful or not, the courtiers were to return, and, beginning with the lowest in rank, were to give a truthful account of their adventures while on the quest.
All the knights departed and scoured the forest of the 20 Ardennes, each hoping to meet the robber knight and win the jewel. Among them was Milon, accompanied by his son Roland, a lad of fifteen, whom he had taken as page and armor-bearer. Milon had spent many days in vain search for the knight, when, exhausted by his long ride, he dismounted, 25 removed his heavy armor, and lay down under a tree to sleep, bidding Roland keep close watch during his slumbers.
For a while Roland watched faithfully; then, fired by a desire to distinguish himself, he donned his father's armor, 30 sprang on his steed, and rode off into the forest in search of adventures. He had not gone very far when he saw a gigantic horseman coming to meet him, and by the dazzling glitter of a large stone set in his shield he recognized him to be the invincible knight of the Ardennes. Afraid of nothing, however, he laid his lance in rest when challenged to fight, and charged so bravely that he unhorsed 5 his opponent. A fearful battle on foot ensued, each striving hard to accomplish the death of the other. But at last the fresh young energy of Roland conquered, and his terrible foe fell to the ground in agony. A minute later his corpse lay stiff on the field, leaving the victory in the hands of 10 Roland.
Hastily wrenching the coveted jewel from the shield of the dead warrior, the boy hid it in his breast. Then, riding rapidly back to his sleeping father, he laid aside the armor and removed all traces of a bloody encounter. Soon after, 15 Milon awoke and resumed the quest, when he came upon the body of the dead knight. He was disappointed indeed to find that another had won the jewel, and rode sadly back to court, to be present on the appointed day.
In much pomp Charlemagne ascended his throne amid 20 the deafening sound of trumpets. Then, seating himself, he bade the knights appear before him and relate their adventures. One after another strode up the hall, followed by an armor-bearer holding his shield. Each in turn told of finding the knight slain and the jewel gone. Last of all 25 came Milon. Gloomily he made his way to the throne to repeat the story that had already been told so often. But as he went, there followed behind him, with a radiant face, young Roland, proudly bearing his father's shield, in the center of which shone the precious jewel. At the 30 sight of this all the nobles started, and whispered to one another that Milon had done the deed. Then when he dismally told how he too had found the knight dead a shout of incredulity greeted him. Turning his head, he saw to his amazement that his own shield bore the dazzling gem. At the sight of it he appeared so amazed that Charlemagne set himself to question Roland and thus soon 5 learned how it had been obtained. In reward for his bravery in this encounter Roland was knighted, and allowed to take his place among the paladins of the emperor. Nor was it long before he further distinguished himself, becoming, to his father's delight, the most renowned of that famous 10 company.
—Myths and Legends of the Middle Ages.
1. Explain fully the relationship between Charlemagne and Roland.
2. How did Roland first attract the emperor's attention? What do these early acts of the youth show about the life and living of the times?
3. When did Charlemagne live? Over what country did he rule? Explain the difference between an emperor and a king; a page and a knight.
4. What feat did Roland perform when he was yet a page? One of the characteristics of a legend is its overstatement of fact. Is there anything improbable in Roland's overthrow of the knight? In a series of legendary stories, statements often conflict. What conflict of statement about Roland's father is there in this story?
5. Any encyclopedia and many books of legends will tell you more about Roland. See what you can find, make brief notes of what you read, and report your findings from your notes to the class.
6. Pronounce, spell, and define: amused; attracted; acute; interfere; triumph; gallant; separately; courtiers; distinguish; gigantic; opponent; disappointed; paladin.
KEEPING THE BRIDGE
BY THOMAS BABINGTON MACAULAY
Ancient Rome stood on seven hills on the south shore of the Tiber 5 River, which formed a part of the inner defensive works of the city. Only one bridge—a wooden affair—spanned the river. Across the Tiber was the Janiculum, a hill fortified as an outer post of defense.
When Lars Porsena (Pŏr'sĕ na), king of Etruria, declared sudden war on Rome, he marched on the city so rapidly that the Janiculum was carried by storm. Nothing stood between him and the City of the Seven Hills—unless the bridge were destroyed. 10
Horatius and two others elected to hold the bridgehead opposite the city against Porsena's entire army while the Romans cut down the bridge. The best of the Etruscan warriors came against the powerful three, only to be slain. Just before the bridge fell into the river, Horatius sent his two comrades back across the bridge to safety. He held his foes at bay single-handed till the structure fell into the 15 water. Then he plunged into the Tiber with his heavy fighting gear on, and swam to the Roman side. Thus was the city saved.
Out spake the Consul roundly: "The bridge must straight go down; For since Janiculum is lost, 20 Naught else can save the town." Then out spake brave Horatius, 5 The Captain of the Gate: "To every man upon this earth Death cometh soon or late. And how can man die better 25 Than facing fearful odds, 10 For the ashes of his fathers And the temples of his gods?
"Hew down the bridge, Sir Consul, With all the speed ye may; I, with two more to help me, Will hold the foe in play. In yon strait path a thousand 5 May well be stopped by three. Now, who will stand on either hand, And keep the bridge with me?"
Then out spake Spurius Lartius,— A Ramnian proud was he: 10 "Lo, I will stand on thy right hand, And keep the bridge with thee." And out spake strong Herminius,— Of Titian blood was he: "I will abide on thy left side, 15 And keep the bridge with thee."
"Horatius," quoth the Consul, "As thou say'st, so let it be." And straight against that great array Forth went the dauntless three. 20 For Romans, in Rome's quarrel, Spared neither land nor gold, Nor son nor wife, nor limb nor life, In the brave days of old.
The three stood calm and silent, 25 And looked upon the foes, And a great shout of laughter From all the vanguard rose. . . .
But soon Etruria's noblest Felt their hearts sink to see On the earth the bloody corpses, In the path the dauntless three!
Meanwhile the ax and lever 5 Have manfully been plied; And now the bridge hangs tottering Above the boiling tide. "Come back, come back, Horatius!" Loud cried the Fathers all; 10 "Back, Lartius! back, Herminius! Back, ere the ruin fall!"
Back darted Spurius Lartius; Herminius darted back; And, as they passed, beneath their feet 15 They felt the timbers crack. But when they turned their faces, And on the farther shore Saw brave Horatius stand alone, They would have crossed once more. 20
But, with a crash like thunder, Fell every loosened beam, And, like a dam, the mighty wreck Lay right athwart the stream; And a long shout of triumph 25 Rose from the walls of Rome, As to the highest turret tops Was splashed the yellow foam.
Alone stood brave Horatius, But constant still in mind; Thrice thirty thousand foes before, And the broad flood behind. "Down with him!" cried false Sextus, 5 With a smile on his pale face. "Now yield thee!" cried Lars Porsena, "Now yield thee to our grace."
Round turned he, as not deigning Those craven ranks to see; 10 Naught spake he to Lars Porsena, To Sextus naught spake he; But he saw on Palatinus The white porch of his home; And he spake to the noble river 15 That rolls by the towers of Rome:
"O Tiber! Father Tiber! To whom the Romans pray! A Roman's life, a Roman's arms, Take thou in charge this day!" 20 So he spake, and speaking, sheathed The good sword by his side, And with his harness on his back, Plunged headlong in the tide.
No sound of joy or sorrow 25 Was heard from either bank; But friends and foes, in dumb surprise, With parted lips and straining eyes, Stood gazing where he sank;
And when above the surges They saw his crest appear, All Rome sent forth a rapturous cry, And even the ranks of Tuscany Could scarce forbear to cheer. 5
"Curse on him!" quoth false Sextus; "Will not the villain drown? But for this stay, ere close of day We should have sacked the town!" "Heaven help him!" quoth Lars Porsena, 10 "And bring him safe to shore; For such a gallant feat of arms Was never seen before."
And now the ground he touches, Now on dry earth he stands; 15 Now round him throng the Fathers, To press his gory hands; And now, with shouts and clapping, And noise of weeping loud, He enters through the River Gate, 20 Borne by the joyous crowd.
1. This is one of the famous legends of Roman history, and it loses nothing in Macaulay's brilliant telling. Lord Macaulay (1800-1859) was an English statesman, essayist, historian, and poet. He reveled in the romance of history. Read and report on his life.
2. What was the situation when this extract takes up the tale? How many soldiers had Porsena?
3. Imagine yourself in Horatius's place. Read aloud his brave speech in the first and second stanzas.
4. If you were dramatizing this whole situation, what scenes would you have? What would be the climax?
In these days of the automobile, the swift express train, the telephone, the telegraph, and the airplane, it is hard for us to realize that our country did not always possess the conveniences and comforts we now enjoy. We are too apt to forget the struggles the pioneer fathers of our nation had in their frontier life. To them we owe a debt of gratitude not only for what we have and are, but also for the deeds of heroism they have bequeathed us as a part of our national heritage.
THE STORY OF MOLLY PITCHER
BY FRANK R. STOCKTON
The battle of Monmouth, N. J., was fought June 29, 1778. It was the first battle the Americans had with the British after the terrible winter at Valley Forge. It would have been a signal victory for Washington's troops had General Charles Lee obeyed Washington's orders. Notwithstanding Lee's acts, the American troops held their ground till nightfall, when the British quietly retreated.
At the battle of Monmouth, a young Irishwoman, wife of an artilleryman, played a very notable part in the working of the American cannon on that eventful day in June.
Molly was born with the soul of a soldier, and although 5 she did not belong to the army she much preferred going to war to staying at home and attending to domestic affairs. She was in the habit of following her husband on his various marches, and on the day of the Monmouth battle she was with him on the field. 10
The day was very hot. The rays of the sun came down with such force that many of the soldiers were taken sick and some died; and the constant discharges of musketry and artillery did not make the air any cooler. Molly devoted herself to keeping her husband as comfortable as 15 possible, and she made frequent trips to a spring not far away to bring him water; and on this account he was one of the freshest and coolest artillerymen on the ground. In fact, there was no man belonging to the battery who was able to manage one of these great guns better than Pitcher. 20 Returning from one of her trips to the spring, Molly had almost reached the place where her husband was stationed when a bullet from the enemy struck the poor man and stretched him dead, so that Molly had no sooner caught sight of her husband than she saw him fall. She 5 ran to the gun, but scarcely had reached it before she heard one of the officers order the cannon to be wheeled back out of the way, saying that there was no one there who could serve it as it had been served.
Now Molly's eyes flashed fire. One might have thought 10 that she would have been prostrated with grief at the loss of her husband, but as we have said, she had within her the soul of a soldier. She had seen her husband, who was the same to her as a comrade, fall, and she was filled with an intense desire to avenge his death. She cried out to 15 the officer not to send the gun away but to let her serve it; and scarcely waiting to hear what he would say, she sprang to the cannon and began to load it and fire it. She had so often attended her husband and even helped him in his work that she knew all about this sort of thing, and her 20 gun was managed well and rapidly.
It might be supposed that it would be a very strange thing to see a woman on the battlefield firing a cannon; but even if the enemy had watched Molly with a spyglass, they would not have noticed anything to excite their surprise. 25 She wore an ordinary skirt, like other women of the time; but over this was an artilleryman's coat and on her head was a cocked hat with some jaunty feathers stuck in it, so that she looked almost as much like a man as the rest of the soldiers of the battery. 30
During the rest of the battle Molly bravely served her gun; and if she did as much execution in the ranks of the redcoats as she wanted to do, the loss in the regiments in front of her must have been very great. Of course all the men in the battery knew Molly Pitcher, and they watched her with the greatest interest and admiration. She would not allow anyone to take her place, but kept on loading and 5 firing until the work of the day was done. Then the officers and men crowded about her with congratulations and praise.
The next day General Greene went to Molly—whom he found in very much the condition in which she had left 10 the battlefield, stained with dirt and powder, with her fine feathers gone and her cocked hat dilapidated—and conducted her, just as she was, to General Washington. When the commander in chief heard what she had done, he gave her warm words of praise. He determined to 15 bestow upon her a substantial reward; for anyone who was brave enough and able enough to step in and fill an important place, as Molly had filled her husband's place, certainly deserved a reward. It was not according to the rules of war to give a commission to a woman; but as 20 Molly had acted the part of a man, Washington considered it right to pay her for her services as if she had been a man. He therefore gave her the commission of a sergeant and recommended that her name be placed on the list of half-pay officers for life. 25
—Stories of New Jersey.
1. How did Molly come to be on the battlefield? Describe her as she looked in an artilleryman's garb. Relate briefly her deed of heroism. How was it rewarded?
2. What other heroines of history can you recall?
3. Frank R. Stockton (1834-1902) is a well-known name in American literature. He wrote many books, among which Rudder Grange stands high. His short stories, however, are his best work.
KING PHILIP TO THE WHITE SETTLERS
BY EDWARD EVERETT
For thirty years Massasoit was the firm friend of the early settlers in New England. But when his son Philip came to rule over the Indian tribe their former friendship for the whites was broken. In 1675 Philip led his 10,000 warriors against the white settlers. King Philip's War lasted into 1676 when Philip was captured and slain. The following is a supposed speech of defiance that Philip delivered to the colonists.
White man, there is eternal war between thee and me! I quit not the land of my fathers but with my life. In those woods where I bent my youthful bow, I will still hunt the deer. Over yonder waters I will still glide unrestrained in my bark canoe. By those dashing waterfalls 5 I will still lay up my winter's store of food. On these fertile meadows I will still plant my corn. Stranger, the land is mine! I understand not these paper rights. I gave not my consent when, as thou sayest, these broad regions were purchased, for a few baubles, of my fathers. They 10 could sell what was theirs; they could sell no more. How could my fathers sell that which the Great Spirit sent me into the world to live upon? They knew not what they did. The stranger came, a timid suppliant, few and feeble, and asked to lie down on the red man's bearskin, and 15 warm himself at the red man's fire, and have a little piece of land to raise corn for his women and children; and now he is become strong, and mighty, and bold, and spreads out his parchment over the whole, and says, "It is mine!" Stranger, there is not room for us both. The Great Spirit has not made us to live together. There is poison in the white man's cup; the white man's dog barks at the red man's heels.
If I should leave the land of my fathers, whither shall I 5 fly? Shall I go to the south, and dwell among the graves of the Pequots? Shall I wander to the west?—the fierce Mohawk, the man-eater, is my foe. Shall I fly to the east?—the great water is before me. No, stranger, here I have lived, and here I will die! And if here thou abidest, there 10 is eternal war between thee and me. Thou hast taught me thy arts of destruction. For that alone I thank thee; and now take heed to thy steps; the red man is thy foe. When thou goest forth by day, my bullet shall whistle by thee; when thou liest down at night, my knife is at thy 15 throat. The noonday sun shall not discover thy enemy, and the darkness of midnight shall not protect thy rest. Thou shalt plant in terror, and I will reap in blood; thou shalt sow the earth with corn, and I will strew it with ashes; thou shalt go forth with the sickle, and I will follow after 20 with the scalping knife; thou shalt build, and I will burn, till the white man or the Indian shall cease from the land. Go thy way, for this time, in safety; but remember, stranger, there is eternal war between me and thee.
1. What reasons did Philip give for declaring war? To what extent were his reasons good?
2. What did he mean by "paper rights"; "a timid suppliant"; "poison in the white man's cup"; "arts of destruction"?
3. Edward Everett (1794-1865) was an American statesman, orator, and scholar. He served as a member of Congress, and afterwards was president of Harvard College. He was the leading orator of his day.
PIONEER LIFE IN OHIO
BY WILLIAM DEAN HOWELLS
William Dean Howells (1837-1920) long held a position of leadership among American writers of prose. In his many years of authorship he produced novels, essays, criticism, plays, travel, and biography. For ten years he was editor of the Atlantic Monthly; and he was connected at various times with Harper's Magazine, The Nation, and other journals. His writings excel in the truthfulness of the descriptions.
It would not be easy to say where or when the first log cabin was built, but it is safe to say that it was somewhere in the English colonies of North America, and it is certain that it became the type of the settler's house throughout the whole Middle West. It may be called the 5 American house, the Western house, the Ohio house. Hardly any other house was built for a hundred years by the men who were clearing the land for the stately mansions of our day. As long as the primeval forests stood, the log cabin remained the woodsman's home; and not fifty years ago 10 I saw log cabins newly built in one of the richest and most prosperous regions of Ohio. They were, to be sure, log cabins of a finer pattern than the first settler reared. They were of logs handsomely shaped with the broadax; the joints between the logs were plastered with mortar; the 15 chimney at the end was of stone; the roof was shingled, the windows were of glass, and the door was solid and well hung. They were such cabins as were the homes of the well-to-do settlers in all the older parts of the West. But throughout that region there were many log cabins, mostly sunk to the uses of stables and corn cribs, of the kind that the borderers built in the times of the Indian War, from 1750 to 1800. They were framed of the round logs, untouched by the ax except for the notches at the ends where 5 they were fitted into one another; the chimney was of small sticks stuck together with mud, and was as frail as a barn-swallow's nest; the walls were stuffed with moss, plastered with clay; the floor was of rough boards called puncheons, riven from the block with a heavy knife; the 10 roof was of clapboards, split from logs and laid loosely on the rafters and held in place with logs fastened athwart them.
When the first settlers broke the silence of the woods with the stroke of their axes and hewed out a space for their 15 cabins and their fields, they inclosed their homes with a high stockade of logs, for defense against the Indians; or if they built their cabins outside the wooden walls of their stronghold, they always expected to flee to it at the first alarm and to stand siege within it. The Indians had 20 no cannon, and the logs of the stockade were proof against their rifles; if a breach was made, there was still the blockhouse left, the citadel of every little fort. This was heavily built, and pierced with loopholes for the riflemen within, whose wives ran bullets for them at its mighty hearth, and 25 who kept the savage foe from its sides by firing down upon them through the projecting timbers of its upper story; but in many a fearful siege the Indians set the roof ablaze with arrows wrapped in burning tow, and then the fight became desperate indeed. After the Indian War ended, 30 the stockade was no longer needed, and the settlers had only the wild beasts to contend with, and those constant enemies of the poor in all ages and conditions—hunger and cold.
They deadened the trees around them by girdling them with the ax, and planted the spaces between the leafless trunks with corn and beans and pumpkins. These were 5 their necessaries, but they had an occasional luxury in the wild honey from the hollow of a bee tree when the bears had not got at it. In its season, there was an abundance of wild fruit, plums and cherries, haws and grapes, berries and nuts of every kind, and the maples yielded all the 10 sugar they chose to make from them. But it was long before they had, at any time, the profusion which our modern arts enable us to enjoy the whole year round, and in the hard beginnings the orchard and the garden were forgotten for the fields. Their harvests must pay for the 15 acres bought of the government, or from some speculator who had never seen the land; and the settler must be prompt in paying, or else see his home pass from him after all his toil into the hands of strangers. He worked hard and he fared hard, and if he was safer when peace came, 20 it is doubtful if he were otherwise more fortunate. As the game grew scarcer it was no longer so easy to provide food for his family; the change from venison and wild turkey to the pork which early began to prevail in his diet was hardly a wholesome one. Besides, in cutting down the 25 trees he opened spaces to the sun which had been harmless enough in the shadow of the woods, but which now sent up their ague-breeding miasma. Ague was the scourge of the whole region, and it was hard to know whether the pestilence was worse on the rich levels beside the rivers, or 30 on the stony hills where the settlers sometimes built to escape it.
When once the settler was housed against the weather, he had the conditions of a certain rude comfort indoors. If his cabin was not proof against the wind and rain or snow, its vast fireplace formed the means of heating, while the forest was an inexhaustible store of fuel. At first he dressed 5 in the skins and pelts of the deer and fox and wolf, and his costume could have varied little from that of the red savage about him, for we often read how he mistook Indians for white men at first sight, and how the Indians in their turn mistook white men for their own people. The whole 10 family went barefoot in the summer, but in winter the pioneer wore moccasins of buckskin and buckskin leggins or trousers; his coat was a hunting shirt belted at the waist and fringed where it fell to his knees. It was of homespun, a mixture of wool and flax called linsey-woolsey, 15 and out of this the dresses of his wife and daughters were made. The wool was shorn from the sheep, which were so scarce that they were never killed for their flesh, except by the wolves, which were very fond of mutton but had no use for wool. For a wedding dress a cotton check was 20 thought superb, and it really cost a dollar a yard; silks, satins, laces, were unknown. A man never left his house without his rifle; the gun was a part of his dress, and in his belt he carried a hunting knife and a hatchet; on his head he wore a cap of squirrel skin, often with the plume-like 25 tail dangling from it.