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piece of cake. How tame it is! it takes the cake out of my hand. Ask the cook what is the name of that lit-tle an-i-mal.
It is a mar-mot, and it comes from the moun-tains of Swit-zer-land. Do not be a-fraid of it, for it is very good-na-tured, and though it has sharp teeth, it will not bite you. Only we must take care our lit-tle dog does not fol-low us in, for it hates dogs very much, and will fly at them when it sees them.
Ask the cook what the mar-mot eats. An-y-thing and ev-er-y-thing, meat, pud-ding, and fruit; but it is most pleased if it can get into the dai-ry, to lap the milk, and de-vour the but-ter. It seems very fond of the hot kit-chen fire, for it can not bear the cold. It likes to lie in this warm bas-ket lined with hay. I wish you could see a mar-mot in its own na-tive moun-tains. It digs a hole in the earth with the help of its com-pan-ions, and lives un-der ground all the win-ter, in a nice large room, lined with moss and hay. It makes the hay it-self. O, what a clever lit-tle hay-ma-ker! It has no scythe to mow with, no fork to toss the hay with, no cart to bring it home in; how then does it make hay ? Its teeth are its scythe, and its paws are its fork. The little marmots car-ry the hay home them-selves, and make their room com-fort-a-ble be-fore win-ter comes.
While they are ma-king hay, one mar-mot keeps watch, perched on a high rock, to see that no man, or dog, or great bird,
If he sees
one of these en-e-mies, he whis-tles, and then all the mar-mots hur-ry into their holes a-gain. Well, the mar-mot is a clev-er little creature in-deed."Near Home.”
Who taught the bird to build her nest
Of wool, and hay, and moss?
And lay the twigs a-cross ?
A-mong the sweet-est flowers ?
To eat in win-ter hours ?
Their nar-row holes to bore?
To gath-er up their store?
their little skill;
To do His ho-ly will.-Jane Taylor.
“ What is grow-ing in that field, moth-er, which looks so blue ?” asked Ma-ry. “It is flax, my dear,” said her moth-er; “let us go through the gate and look at the blue flowers; some of them will be very pret-ty to add to my nose-gay."
So they went through the gate to look at the flax. “But, moth-er,” said Ma-ry, “this is not like the flax I see you spin; here are on-ly blue flowers and green stalks and leaves, quite dif-fer-ent from the flax you spin.”
“When these flowers are with-ered a-way,” said Mrs. Thomp-son, "and the seeds are come in-stead of them, all the stalks will be pulled up and car-ried away to a place where they will be soaked in wa-ter first, and then they will be beat-en to make them in to such flax as I spin.” “Well,” said Ma-ry, "I should not have thought these stalks could ever be made into flax for spin-ning."
“Af-ter the stalks are made into thread, it is ta-ken to the weav-er's, and is there woy-en into lin-en, and when the lin-en comes home, it is spread out on the grass and sprink-led with wa-ter as it lies in the sun. This is called bleach-ing it. And do you know, Ma-ry," said Mrs. Thomp-son, “what your frock is made of?” “I think, moth-er,” said Ma-ry, “ you once told me it was made of cot-ton. Does cot-ton grow like flax in the fields ?"
“Cot-ton," said Mrs. Thomp-son, "grows in those parts of the world where the cli-mate is warm, and when it is grow-ing and read-y to be picked it looks something like wool. It is some-times called cotton wool. Large quan-ti-ties of it are raised in the south-ern parts of the U-ni-ted States.”
“ Is cot-ton spun into thread, the same as flax is, moth-er?” said Mary.
“ Yes, my dear,” said her moth-er, ” and it is woy-en in the same way as flax, and made into cal-i-co, such as
A child of mine, says Mr. Ce-cil, was play-ing one day with a few beads, which seemed to de-light her won-derful-ly. Her whole soul was ab-sorbed in her beads. I said
My dear, you have some pret-ty beads there." “ Yes, pa-pa." “ And you seem to be vast-ly pleased with them.”
pa-pa.” Well, now, throw them be-hind the fire." The tears start-ed into her eyes. She looked earnest-ly at me, as though she ought to have a rea-son for such a cru-el sac-ri-fice.
“Well, my dear, do as you please; but you know I never told you to do any-thing which I did not think would be good for you."
She looked at me a few moments long-er, and then, sum-mon-ing up all her for-ti-tude, her breast heav-ing with the effort, she dashed them into the fire.
Well,” said I, “ there let them lie; you shall hear more a-bout them an-oth-er time; but say no more a-bout them now.”
Some days af-ter, I bought her a box full of lar-ger beads, and toys of the same kind. When I re-turned home, I opened the treas-ure, and set it before her; she burst into tears of ec-sta-sy. “ Those, my child,” said I, “are yours, because you be-lieved me, when I told you it would be bet-ter for you to throw those beads be-hind the fire. Now, that has brought you this treas-ure. But now, my dear, re-mem-ber, as long as you live, what FAITH is. You threw
when I bade you, be-cause you had faith in me, that I never ad-vised
you but for your good. Put the same con-fi-dence in God. Be-lieve every thing He says in His Word. Wheth-er you un-der-stand it or not, have faith in Him that He means your good.”
“What an excel-lent thing is know-ledge!" said a sharp-look-ing, bust-ling lit-tle man, to one who was much old-er than him-self. Know-ledge is an ex-cellent thing," re-peat-ed he; “my boys know more at six and seven years old than I did at twelve. They have heard about all sorts of things, and can talk on all sorts of sub-jects. The world is a great deal wi-ser than it used to be. Ev-er-y bod-y knows some-thing of ev-er-y thing now. Do you not think, Sir, that know-ledge is an ex-cel-lent thing ?"
“Why, Sir," re-plied the old man, look-ing grave-ly, " that de-pends en-tire-ly on the use to which it is ap-plied. It may be a bless-ing or a curse. Know-ledge is only an in-crease of power, and power may be a bad as well as a good thing."
$ That is what I can-not un-der-stand," said the bustling little man. “ How can power be a bad thing ???
"I will tell you," meek-ly re-plied the old man, and thus went on :-"When the power of a horse is un-der re-straint, the an-i-mal is use-ful in bear-ing bur-dens, draw-ing loads, and car-ry-ing his master; but when the re-straint is ta-ken away, the horse breaks his bri-dle, dash-es the car-riage to pie-ces, or throws his ri-der.”
“I see! I see !" said the lit-tle man.
" When the wa-ter of a large pond is prop-er-ly conduct-ed by trench-es, it makes the fields a-round fer-tile; but when it bursts through its banks, it sweeps ev-er-y thing be-fore it, and de-stroys the prod-uce of the field."
"! I see ! I see !" said the lit-tle man, “I see !"
“When a ship is steered a-right, the sạil that she hoists up en-a-bles her the soon-er to get into port; but if steered wrong, the more sail she car-ries, the far-ther will she go out of her course.”'
I see! I see!” said the lit-tle man, “I see clear-ly!”