Imatges de pÓgina
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a dog, came along with his dear little grandson, Nello. The old man, after a great deal of trouble, got Patrasche to his hut and nursed him well again. What a happy time it was for Patrasche! He who had known only curses and blows, learned how sweet were the kindly tones of the old man's voice and the tender touches of the child's caressing hands. How he loved these two!

Soon he was well enough to pull the old man's milk cart to town for him. And later little Nello and he went together, as the grandfather became too old.

Now, there was a Roman Catholic cathedral at Antwerp that had in it three glorious paintings done. by the master, Rubens. They were (1) the angel telling Mary that she should be the mother of our Lord, (2) raising the cross for the crucifixion, and (3) lifting the dead Christ down from it. But the last two were kept covered, for the priests asked a certain sum of money from those who saw them. Little Nello's heart was almost broken with a desire to see them, and a despair of ever having money enough. For Nello was a born artist, only no one knew it. But Nello was sure that he could be something great some day.

Once when he was playing with little Alois, the only playmate he had besides Patrasche, he drew her picture with a piece of charcoal on a flat bit of wood. Her father, the miller, saw it and offered to buy it. Nello saw visions of the beautiful pictures in the church that he ight see now if he took the money, but-sell the picture of dainty Alois, his child-friend? He couldn't do it! "Keep your monev and the portrait both," he said. "You have been often good to me." Which proves that he had indeed very much of the artist nature.

But the miller was the richest man in the hamlet, and he was afraid that if he let the children play together they might wish to be companions when they grew up. That would hurt his pride, so he became most unkind to Nello, and forbade Alois to speak to him. When Nello complained to his grandfather the old man told him. "The poor cannot choose." But something big inside Nello always answered silently: "The poor do choose sometimes choose to be great, so that men cannot say them nay."

There was a little rough room outside the hut that no one ever went into but Nello. He made it into a crude studio and worked there secretly, though no one had ever taught him a line of drawing. He was working on a picture that he hoped would win the prize offered to anyone under eighteen who would try for it unaided. Three of the first artists, of Antwerp were to be the judges and the prize was to be awarded at Noel (Christmas) time. He had worked on it almost a year, and it was a bitter winter day when he put it on his cart for patrasche to take to town. But he

had to wait weeks before he learned its fate.

Meantime business was growing duller. The mill had been burned and the miller had cruelly, accused. Nello, so that the neighbors turned with frowns instead of smiles when the little milk-cart approached.

About a week before Christmas the grandfather died. A month's rent was due. The landlord would show no kindness. On the morning of Christmas Eve, Nello said proudly to his one friend, Patrasche, "Let us go before we are kicked out," and cold and hungry they went on the way to Antwerp. Once he begged a crust for Patrasche, but he was refused. Thev reached Ant

werp in time to hear of the awarding of the prize. Alas, the winner was not Nello! The boy fainted. Patrasche licked his face and was overjoyed when the boy threw his arms about his neck. Sadly and wearily they toiled back to the village. Patrasche was as sorry for his young master as a faithful dog could be and told him so in his own way. For they had been together now fully ten years. It was stormy and growing dark as they returned. Suddenly Patrasche caught a familiar scent and he beran scratching in the snow. Then

rubbed against Nello with something in his mouth. It was a wallet with the miller's name on it, and inside were two thousand francs. (About $400.00; a franc is 20 cents.) Nello took it straight to the miller's wife. He told her that Patrasche had found it and for her to tell the miller so that he would be kind to Patrasche's old age. Then before the woman grasped his meaning, he shut the door fast on Patrasche and ran away. Patrasche, crazed at being left behind, bounded against the heavy door with all his might. He refused to leave it either for the fire or the food they offered him.

When the miller returned exceedingly dejected from failing to find his purse, his wife told him what had happened. He was more than eager to make amends, and said. that on the morrow he would go to the hut and bring the lad to be his son. But there was to be feasting that Christmas Eve, so he did not have time to go then. And only Patrasche knew that Nello had not even the hut to go to, so he watched his chance, and when a careless visitor left the door ajar, he left the warmth and the light and the plentiful food he had not tasted, for dogs know how to be friends, and went into the cold blackness after

his beloved master. He knew where the boy had gone. And he followed him back to the cathedral. He found him by the chancel and together they huddled in the ice-cold great stone building. There had been the Chrismas Eve's midnight mass and someone had left a door unlocked, so the boy, on entering, had torn aside the veil that covered the two glorious paintings he so longed to see. But, alas, the candles had all been extinguished and his eyes could not pierce the darkness. But suddenly the moon shone out bright and full upon the pictures. A look of ineffable joy flooded the face of the young devotee. At last he had seen them! His eyes were alight with the glory of Christ! Then a darkness came over them and he fell back against Patrasche.

They found them there Christmas morning. So rigid were they that the lad's arms could not be parted from Patrasche's frozen body. And the miller came to make the boy his son; and a great painter came to search for the genius that should have won the prize by right; and a sweet little girl wept bitterly; but no one could do anything for Nello and Patrasche but bury them tenderly together. And the good priest gave permission, and said a prayer over the grave as though a dog, too, might have a soul.

1. Tell the story briefly.

2. What do you think Ouida means when she says: "To deal the tortures of hell on the animal creation is a way Christians have of showing their belief in it?"

(Ouida is pronounced we'da. It is what her little sister used to call her when she tried to say "Louisa," so she chose it for a pen name. Ouida was an English writer, but her parents were of French descent. Her children's stories are considered her best). 3. Do you think we are as kind to animals as we might be? Why?

4. Give examples of kindness and unkindness to animals that you have

seen.

5. Describe Patrasche and tell how his cruel master mistreated him.

6. Read from: He fell in the middle of the white, dusty road" (page 11) to "nothing anywhere in the world." 7. How did Patrasche show that he wanted to pull the milk-cart?

8. Who was Rubens? Read from: "Antwerp, as all the world knows,' (page 22) to "future know of you.'

9. What does "O nations? closely should you treasure your great men, for by them alone will the future know of you" mean?

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10. Read from, "One day, when the little Alois, finding him alone." (page 35) to "it shall all be changed by and by."

FOR THE SENIORS.

Thoreau went into the woods and camped in his hut on Walden Pond to prove his philosophy on the simple life as well as that man may be happy though alone if he has eyes and ears for nature. He proved to his own satisfaction that a man can live on less than one hundred dollars a year and have two-thirds of his time to do as he pleases; and he proves to our satisfaction that a man cannot isolate himself from his fellows and be broad-minded or of quick sympathies. Thoreau is not convincing. You imagine that at times he must have grown so lonely that he would have given almost anything to break through the rules he so stoically kept. You fancy that he strains a point now and then for effect; strenuously squeezing the juice out of every atom of dry earth that he may cry triumphantly "See!" We are glad that there is only one Thoreau, for no man can be natural and be a solitary. Life is meant to be lived. There are men and women in the word, children and animals to be loved, worked for, made better and made better off. The greatest man works for the most. And so, though Thoreau has done his part, his very aloofness from mankind has kept him from

11. Why did Nello think he was rich? (page 35). Read from “He believed in the future" (page 38) to "might of kings."

12. Read from: "The trail of Nello's steps" (page 61) to the end, or if preferred have one or more girls read the whole story, and assign questions 2, 4, 9, and 11.

"WALDEN."

remost places. He does not rank with his contemporary, Emerson. Yet he teaches us two great things: the wonderful lesson of goodness for goodness's own sake, for he had a splendid moral vein in him, and the wisdom of not wasting too much time in superfluities.

"There is no odor so bad as that which arises from goodness tainted," he says (philanthrophy). And the goodness that is conscious of its goodness is tainted. The sun does not go poking into corners looking for someone to shine on, it goes steadily its big bright way and the earth smiles back and flowers. "If I knew for a certainty that a man was coming to my house with the conscious design of doing me good," he says, "I should run for my life."

Some of his philosophy he expresses in his verse:

"Whate'er we leave to God, God does, And blesses us;

The work we choose should be our own, God leaves alone."

In another poem, he makes "The Fisher's Boy" say that his life is like a stroll along the beach, carelessly letting the water play over

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The best way to read the book (as to read all essayists) is not to begin at the beginning and wade through it no matter how hard it is to do so, but to turn the leaves here and there, till the eye catches something interesting. Reading should never be a bore. One thought thoroughly assimiliated is worth more than a whole book passed through without gain.

With "Walden" the quickest interest will probably be gained by reading parts of the conclusion first, then, perhaps, the battle of the ants in "Brute neighbors," then bits of "philanthrophy," by which time the introduction will be de

cidedly interesting, and the rest of "Walden" less difficult.

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1. Tell very briefly three thoughts in the last eight pages. Beginning 343, "There was an artist," read to "necessary of the soul." 2.

What does he mean when he says: "The cost of a thing is the amount of what I will call life which is required to be exchanged for it, immediately or in the long run?" 3. Read from “men say,” practically, begin (Phil. page 75) to "the broadest sense." What would be love in its broadest sense if philanthrophy is not?

4. What is the main thought in "What I Lived For?" Do you agree with him or not? Why?

5.

.

Read from "There is an incessant influx" (page 349) to the end of the book.

6. Give the meaning of the last paragraph in "conclusion," then read it.

7. Give two main ideas of "Reading." What does he mean when he says that great poets have never been read by mankind, because only great poets can read them?

8. Read from "Yet I experienced" (Solitude; 137) to "reach sometime in the morning."

9. Read from "I find it wholesome to be alone" (142) to "should touch him."

10. Read from "touch him" to "in new house."

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