Miss Mary Hooper Books

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Nelson's Home Comforts - Little dinners - Cookery For Invalids - Every Day Meals - Hints on Cookery Good Plain Cookery - Handbook For The Breakfast Table - Weekly Telegraph Cookery Book - Our Dog Prin - Ways and Tricks of Animals

Lily's Letters from the Farm  (USA)- Wives and Housewives (a story for the times) Papers on Cookery (no image) For Better For worse (no image)


Victorian Book for Children

...Ways And Tricks Of Animals

with stories about aunt Mary's pets


The following little stories have been written in the most simple style and language, with the view of amusing young children, and of interesting them in the nature and habits of animals. Most of the stories aim at showing that animals are capable not only of  physical, but of mental suffering; and it is hoped that this teaching may lead to an early recognition in the minds of children of their duty towards the animal creation, and thus prevent the commission of many of the acts of cruelty which more commonly result from want of thought than from want of feeling.

Mary Hooper. (August, 1879)



Jack's Hard Lesson.

"I am sure," said Jack, a fine donkey colt, to his Mother, "it would be very nice to see the world. This is a dull old place, and there is nothing to be seen here but fields, and grass and trees." "You are not old enough to know better, Jack," said the Mother. This is the best time of your life, if you will only think so. You have no care, no weight to draw, nobody to beat you, and you have nothing to do all day but kick up your heels and eat thistles. "Oh, indeed!" said the young donkey, trying to look wise; "but I have to work for my living; if I were not to poke about, how should I find thistles? Now, if I had a master in the town, thistles and sweet hay, and lots of nice things would be bought for me." Would they? The chances are. Jack, that you would never know the taste of thistles, and that the hay would be mouldy, as it too often is in towns, where anything is thought good enough for a poor donkey." As Jack was a donkey, of course he was obstinate, so he threw up his head with a look just" as you see in the picture, and thought his Mother was not so wise as himself that, in fact, she had lived in the country until she had grown stupid. For all you say," replied Jack, " I should like to see the world, and I shall jump for joy if I can but get the chance. I have no doubt I shall get on well in a town."



"My boy," said the Mother, "I have seen many of your brothers and sisters go away, but never has one come back to me. My old heart is sad at the thought of losing you too. I wish I may have the luck to keep you with me, and that you may take my place when I die." Jack said no more, but wished, for all that, he might soon go into a town. One day, when the master was going his rounds in the fields, he saw Jack, now grown into a strong fine donkey, and he told his man he could not have him idle any longer, and that he must be sold. Poor old Mother donkey heard all this, and went off with a tear in her eye, but Jack frisked, and in his way told the master it was just what he wished, and that he should be glad to go. So, soon after, Jack was taken to the Fair, and for the first time in his life saw a town. What a noise, and what a lot of animals of all kinds were there! Poor things! thought Jack, some of them look half dead with fright, and all of them are sad.

Perhaps they are like my old Mother, so fond of the fields they did not like to leave them. Very soon Jack began to look sad too, and to fear he had made a mistake. He was hungry, and nobody took any heed, and one man gave him a pinch, and others pokes, and his sides ached with the rough usage he got. At last a man with a loud voice and a thick stick came up to Jack, and after a great deal of talk, pulling him about, and hurting his mouth, this man, whose name was Mr. Binks, bought Jack. The first thing he did, as soon as Jack was paid for and he could do as he liked with him, was to give him a kick. This so hurt Jack that he made up his mind not to stir a step. Then Mr. Binks beat Jack with his thick stick. As still he stuck his feet out quite stiff and straight, and would not move, Mr. Binks gave him another bad kick. By-and-by Jack found that he must give way to his new master, or be beaten nearly to death. So he let Mr. Binks drag and pull him along the street, and at last he found himself in a poor shed where Mr. Binks last donkey had died. There was a rack, but no food in it, and after giving Jack one more good blow, Mr. Binks shut the door and left him alone. No hay, either good or bad, no thistles, no food of any kind did Jack get that night, and all he could do was to dose and dream of the last sweet meal he had had before he left his old home. Jack knew now that his Mother was right when she said the days of his young life with her were the best days he would have. The next morning, just as Jack thought he should drop for want of food, Mr. Binks brought him some very bad hay. Jack would not have eaten it in his old home, but now he was only too glad to get it, bad as it was. When he had eaten his poor meal Mr. Binks put a bridle on Jack, giving his mouth such tugs that the poor thing shrank with pain.



Then Mr. Binks put on a saddle, and got on Jack s back. 'Go on, go on,' shouted Mr. Binks, but Jack felt a little stronger now he had  had the hay, and he made up his mind that he would not carry Mr. Binks. But the man grew more and more angry at the trouble Jack gave him, and first he beat him with that thick stick, and then gave him such kicks with his great heavy boot that the poor donkey was at last glad to move on. Now, if Jack had had any spirit left, he would have seen lots of life in the town, for the Fair was at its height, and there were booths, shows, giants, dwarfs, wild beasts, wax-works, and a great crowd of people. But so little did Jack now care about seeing life, that the only things he thought worth notice were the stalls where cakes and goodies were sold, these being, to his. donkey mind, the next-best things to thistles. Mr. Binks rode Jack a mile or more out of the town, giving him many blows and kicks, and bad words too, so that his poor heart was as sad as his skin was sore. "Oh! Mother, Mother," sighed Jack, if only I could get back to you and the fields I told you I thought were dull, I would never want to leave them again.''



Mr. Binks had to call at the house of a friend, and whilst he went indoors he tied Jack to a post and left him. He was a long time gone, and poor Jack was now again so hungry he felt as though he must gnaw the post. Just then a little boy and girl came out of the house, and seeing Jack was a nice donkey, they got him some bread and green food. Jack thought it very kind of the children, and wagged his tail by way of thanks. The little boy then said he would take off the bridle and saddle, and put Jack in the stable till Mr. Binks was ready to go on his way. Blows and kicks and want of food had made Jack's wits sharp, and so soon as the bridle was off and he felt himself free, he just gave his heels a kick up and ran off away from the town as fast as his legs would take him. In a short time Jack thought he might stop and eat a bit of the fresh green grass by the way-side, just to keep up his strength. Then he went on again, hoping it would not be long ere' he got to his old home and his mother, for he thought he was on the same road by which he had gone to the Fair. But Jack was wrong in this; he was miles away from that home, and at last he found this out. So he stood still, and all but gave himself up for lost. Then he went up to a gate, and looked into a field, where a lady was picking flowers in the hedges. ''What a pretty donkey!" she said. "Where do you come from, I wonder?" And then she led Jack into the field, patted him, and gave him some cake she had with her; and how glad he was to hear the kind voice, and to stand still and let her pet him.



But soon fright took hold of Jack, for whom should he see coming at a great pace across the field but Mr. Binks himself, with the bridle in his hand, all ready to slip on Jack! There was no place to hide himself in, he was too big not to be seen; so all Jack could do was to creep as close as he could to his new kind lady friend. "That's my donkey, ma'am,'' cried Mr. Binks. "I'll make the wretch smart for this. I will half kill him, that I will. I have run two miles after him." ''Poor little beast!" said the lady, ''he did not know any better." ''No," said Mr. Binks, ''but I can tell you I will teach him better. He shall not play me any more of his tricks." "I hope you will not hurt him," said the lady; "he seems a nice gentle donkey. I want just such a one to draw my child's garden chaise. Would you like to sell him ?" ''No ma'am," said Mr. Binks, "he is a strong, well-bred donkey, and I can make him do my work. "I would give you a good price," said the lady, ''for I have a great wish to have him." "Sorry not to oblige a lady," said Mr. Binks, and he threw the bridle over Jack's head; "but I only bought him for myself yesterday, and I do not know where to get another such a strong young ass." ''The Fair is not yet over," said the lady; "I think you could get another ass there. Do let me have this one." "Oh, well, since you have set your heart upon him I suppose I must let you have him." So then the lady and Mr. Binks made terms, and Jack's heart gave a bound of joy as the man took off the bridle, made a bow to the lady, and went on his way. Then the lady led Jack to a nice stable, where good food of all kinds fit for a donkey was at once given to him. He had, too, a field to roam in, and thistles in his reach, and his life from that time was ever happy. It is true he had to work, but as he did it for love of those who were so good to him, and not from fear of kicks and blows, such as Mr. Binks gave him, it was a pleasure even to work hard. Jack often thought of his old mother and her wise words, and now that he had such a lesson he knew how true they were. You will be sure that Jack never again had a wish to change his lot, or to see the world any more, so long as he lived.


Prin and the Tin Can.

Hart, our coachman, was driving home from the station one day, when he saw a dog with a. large tin can tied to his tail racing at top speed along the high-road. The poor dog was in great fright and trouble, his tongue hung out of his mouth, and he seemed half mad with the noise the tin can made as it struck against the hard road. Hart was a very kind, good man, and he was sorry to see the poor dog in such a sad state, so he pulled up the horses and called the dog to stop. The poor thing was so worn out and so heart-broken that he was glad to hear and obey the voice of a friend, for a dog knows when people wish to be good to him just as well as we do. So Prin, that was the name Hart gave the dog, stood still while his new friend took the tin can off his tail. Some cruel boy had tied it on so fast that Hart had to cut the string with his knife, and to mind as he did so that he did not cut Prin's tail too. There is a saying, "what is fun to you is death to me," and very often children do not think, when they tease a dog, or a cat, or a bird, that it hurts them both in body and mind, and drives them wild with pain and fright. When Hart had taken off the can from Prin's tail, he stroked and patted the dog and said, "Poor old boy, you are all right now, go home.'' Prin wagged his tail, as though he would say, "Thank you, sir," and then he stood still till Hart had started once more on his way. Although the poor dog was so worn out and so thirsty, he ran after the carriage, and kept up well with the horses. As soon as Hart saw Prin had made up his mind to follow him, he gave his whip a crack, and said, "Go home, sir, go home." But Prin looked up into his new friend's face and wagged his poor sore tail as well as he could, and said, with his eyes, "If you please, sir, my home is with you." "Now you know," said Hart to the dog, when they got to the stables, ''this will not do. How do I know what sort of a dog you are? My wife has got too much on her hands to think of having a dog in the house, so home you must go, I tell you." Prin stood till Hart left off speaking; then he dropped his tail, and put his head on one side, and gave Hart a look full of grief. ''Well," said Hart, who had a way of talking to dogs and horses as though they were human beings, "I have told you I can't take you in, so you had best be off when you have had some water." Prin took the drink, of which he was much in need, but still did not show any signs of going home, and Hart once more said, but not as if he really meant it, Prin thought, "I will tie that can to your tail again if you don't be off." All at once Prin seemed to have a bright idea, for he jumped up, gave his tail a wag, and ran off nearly as fast as when he had the can tied to him. "Now' thought Hart, ''he is gone, and that is all right," and he set to work with his horses. But Hart was too soon when he thought Prin was gone for good, for in about ten minutes he came running into the stables with a mutton chop in his mouth, which he laid, with much care, at Hart's feet. ''Why, what is this?" cried Hart; "did you get the tin can tied to your tail because you are a thief? Have you been to a butcher's shop?"



When Hart said this, the dog hung his head, and at first he thought Prin was sorry for the theft. "You must be a bad dog," said Hart, "to steal in this way. I wonder where the butcher's shop is?" Prin looked up into Hart's face, as though he would ask, "Do you want some more meat?" and as he got no answer, ran off again, Hart hoping this time he had gone for good. But, just as he was leaving the stables and going home to tea, back came Prin, with as large a piece of shin of beef in his mouth as he could carry. ''Well now," cried Hart, ''this is too much of a good thing. After all you have been through to-day I don't want to beat you; but I think I ought to do it Any one who takes stolen things is as bad as the thief I cannot have the meat." Prin seemed very sad, as if he could not make out what his new master did want, and he laid the meat down at his feet as before. "Now look here, sir' said Hart ; if you ever do this again, I shall fetch a policeman." At these words Prin fell down flat before Hart, and lay like a dead dog. ''Get up," said Hart; but Prin would show no signs of life till he took him up by the skin of his neck and gave him a pat. "I fear," said Hart, "you have not been well brought up, but have been taught all sorts of bad tricks. Still, it is not your fault, and if you will be good you shall stay with the horses till you like to go home." Prin wagged his tail in a ''thank you" sort of way, and on Hart asking him if he wanted something to eat, lost no time in sitting on his hind legs and begging. ''Poor dog" said Hart, in a kind voice; "there is no food here but the meat you have stolen; you must have a bit of it, I suppose;" but when Hart offered it to Prin, he would not touch it, and lay down again like dead at Hart's, feet. ''Well," said Hart, ''you are a queer dog. You must be hungry; do you want your food cooked? I will bring you back a bit from home after tea." Hart was as good as his word, and brought Prin some bread and meat from his own table. This the dog ate up at once, for though the stolen meat had been left before him he had not touched it. A week went by, and Prin had grown quite at home with the horses, and Hart and he were great friends, when one day the dog gave a howl, and ran into a dark corner and tried to hide himself. Poor Prin's old master had come to fetch him, and as he liked Hart and the stables much better than the home he had left, he did not wish to go back. Nor did Hart wish to part with Prin now, so he offered to buy the dog, and the man at last agreed to sell him. Hart told the man about Prin's tricks the first day he came to the stables, and he said the dog had been taught to go and steal meat, and that when any one said, ''Prin, where is a butcher's shop?" he ran off, and never returned till he had found some. Also that, if told a policeman was coming, he had to lie down and pretend to be dead. If he were offered any of the stolen meat, he would not take it unless you said, ''Prin, it is paid for" Hart told the man, too, about the dog having fetched the mutton chop before he had said anything about a butcher's shop, and the man replied that no doubt Prin had done it thinking to please his new master. Hart said he must try and break Prin of stealing meat; and in the course of time, when the dog found his master did not like such a bad trick, he left it off. Many happy years were spent by Prin in the stables, and Mrs. Hart, when he grew old and in need of care, made a bed up for him by her own fireside, and though she always said she did not love dogs, she cried for two days after Prin died!


How Pink's Pride had a Fall.

''Do, please, tell me a story about the cocks and hens, mother," said little. Bertie; ''I want to know all about Pink, the young hen you sent to the show." ''Very well, my dear," replied Mrs, Grant, "I will tell you how her pride had a sad fall, for before she went to the show at the Crystal Palace," Pink was a very proud hen. "Well, then, you must know." Pink, though she was so young, thought she was as wise as any old fowl in the yard, and much wiser than Jane, our hen-wife. As to the cock, she would not mind him one bit. She said she would get up when she liked in the morning, and there was no need for him to make such a noise at dawn of day, as though, but for that loud, ugly crow of his, the hens would stay all day on their perch. And as to going to roost, of course she could see when the sun was setting, and Mr. Cock need not cluck to tell her it was bedtime. Anyone would think she was a baby, by the way he treated her. No doubt he meant to be kind to the hens when he found anything nice, but he made such a noise and fuss over a grub or a worm, she, for one, hated to hear him. One day Pink told Downy, a good old mother, who had brought up many roods of chickens, that she thought she should soon sit and herself bring up a fine lot of chicks. " Downy said she was glad to hear it, and took on herself to give Pink some advice. "My dear" she said, "some young hens are very silly in the choice of their nests. Some will fight, and try to get that of a hen who has got her eggs all ready for sitting, and they lose much time in that way.



Other hens do not like to do as their mothers did, and take one of the nice nests made for them in the yard, but go a long way off, and sometimes boys steal their eggs, or the cats get the chicks. And it is very hard, Pink, to have your hopes lost so, I can tell you; and I shall be glad to give you any help I can, so that all may go well when you sit" "You are very good, Downy, I am sure," said Pink; "but the fact is, I have made choice of my nest, and I mean to sit in a few days." "Indeed," replied Downy, "then if you will take me to see it, I shall be able to call on you when you sit.'' "All right," said Pink; "this way, if you please;" and she then led Downy to a hole in the fence. '' Oh ! come now. Pink," said Downy, "this is too much of a good thing. You know it is against rules to go out of the yard." "Stuff," cried Pink, "if you care for rules, I don't, so come along." ''Downy thought that for once there would be no harm if she went to see Pink's nest; and so with a great squeeze got through the hole, which was much too small for such large hens, and soon found herself in the garden. "There now," said Pink, as she stood by nine fine eggs laid in a hole she had made under an old seat in a quiet, out-of-the-way corner; "is there such a nice snug place in all the yard as this?'' "I do not like to vex you. Pink," replied Downy; "but I fear your choice is not a wise one. I would not make my nest here for the world. It seems to me far from safe. I like the yard much the best." "Ah! there it is," said Pink, with all her pride up in arms; "you old hens think you know best about everything, and we young ones are always wrong. You stay in the yard till a new idea puts you in a fright. I mean to have my own way and choose my own nest, I can tell you, and I know I shall bring off the best brood of the year." "All right," said Downy; "I ask pardon for having given you my advice. I hope you will not have to think of it when too late." "No fear," said Pink, proudly. Then Downy went back to the yard, and found it such hard work to squeeze through the hole that she made up her mind she would not call on Pink any more. "In a few days after this, Jane, the hen-wife could not find Pink anywhere. Now Pink was soon to be sent to a show at the Crystal Palace. So Jane was much vexed that she should have gone out of the yard, and at once set about to search for her. Whilst Jane was looking about, she saw the hole in the fence, and then made sure Pink had gone out through it; and she called John and had it mended, so that she should not lose any more hens in that way. After a long search in the hedges, Jane at last caught sight of Pink under the old seat, sitting on her eggs with the air of a hen who was doing her duty. "Oh! you bad fowl!" cried Jane, and in a moment the proud young Pink found herself held tight, and very soon was taken back to the yard, and told to leave it again if she dared. Downy, of course, had told the fowls in the yard of Pink's choice of a nest, and of her pride. So when she was brought back, the cock and all the hens came round her, and Pink saw her old friends were laughing at her, and that she had had a fall in the world. "Well, you know, it takes a good deal of trouble to teach some hens, like young children, to be wise; and Pink, as soon as she got over the loss of her first nest, thought fit to boast that she was going to be sent to a show. "You know, Downy," she said, "I am the best bird of my year; I have five toes, my marks are lovely, and I am a perfect Dorking. There is no doubt I shall take the first prize; then the Queen will of course buy me. I shall have a fine place to live in, such as you poor old folks in this yard have no idea of." ''Pink"  said Downy, "folks who want to get above their station often fall below it. No good comes of such pride. We are all very well off here, and I for one, do not wish to live in the Queens yard." ''That is because you have no chance of it," said Pink; only the very best birds can get there. I have heard that the corn is gilt for the birds in the royal yards, and that the hen-houses are as fine as the palace itself.'' "Now, Pink,"' said Downy, "some one has been telling a story. A friend of mine, who was hatched at Windsor, told me the corn and other things were much the same there as in this and other good yards. Pink, I wish you well, but I fear you think too much of yourself, and that ere long your pride will have a fall. Good day to you." At last the day, of which Pink had thought so much, came round, and she found herself put into a dark basket, and soon was on her way to the Crystal Palace. The noise of the railway, the rough jolts she got, the want of air and of fresh food for a whole day and night, were sad trials to poor Pink. But she tried to keep up her spirits, and to hope she would get the first prize, and so rise in the world instead of coming down in it, as Downy had feared she would. When at last all the cocks and hens were put in their cages at the Crystal Palace, and Pink had had some breakfast, she felt as proud as ever, and sure of the prize. But, the worst trouble was to come. When the judges came rounds they just gave one look at Pink, and one said to the others, "I wonder how anyone could think of sending such a common bird to the show; we can give her neither prize nor praise." As they passed on, poor Pink hung her head with shame, and during all the time the show lasted felt very sad at heart. At the end of the show Pink was put back into her basket, but with much less care than when Jane sent her out; and no nice soft food was given to her, only a handful of maize. Then, after being tossed here and there. Pink was put in the railway van with a lot of other fowls, and at the end of a long day and night she heard a man say, 'This fowl has come wrong, it must be sent back."



''Oh," thought Pink, "I know I shall die before I get home. There is not a corn left; and how I do want some water." Another long day went by ere the poor bird got home ; and when Jane took her out of the basket she was so weak she could hardly stand. "Poor thing," said Jane, "you have had a hard time of it; you have not much life left in you. If you do not get better tomorrow, I think we must kill you." Pink was very low, but still life was dear to her. So she tried to eat a bit of the nice sop Jane gave her, and felt all the better for it. When Pink was put back into the yard, all the hens came round to have a "look at her." Some of them were so rude as to laugh, in their way. Some said, "How smart our first prize looks, to be sure;" others gave her a peck. The cock, with his prince-like air, flew on to a rail as you see him in the picture, and crowed over her, and there was only one of all the fowls in the yard who was kind to Pink, and that was Downy. "Do not mind them. Pink," said she, "it will all come right in a day or two; come and roost by my side, and I will take care of you." "Thank you. Downy," said Pink, in a very sad tone of voice; "but I think my heart will break. I have been a silly bird." ''Yes, Pink, that is true; but you have had a lesson, and will never show any more pride. You will soon be happy again among your old friends." Pink felt much better after a night's rest, and in a day or two, when the hens saw a wise old fowl like Downy was such a friend to Pink, they left off teasing her about the first prize, and things went on as they did before she went to the show. Ever since this great event in her life, Pink has been a meek hen, such a good mother, and so kind to all young hens and chickens, that Jane grew fond of her; and you know she often takes tit-bits from her own table, which Pink eats out of her hand. I am sure Pink has never again wished to go to a show, or to rise so high in the world as the Queen's yard, but is content to lay eggs and bring up chickens for little Bertie and his Mamma.


Sam, the Clever Cat.

Some people think that cats have only so much sense as will enable them to catch rats and mice and birds. But we have found that well-bred cats have not only a great deal of sense, but that they can be taught to do many clever tricks, and to know what is said to them. Now, as it is the nature of cats to prey upon birds, we were afraid to keep one, lest, if she got the chance, she should eat up our little pet canaries. One day, however, a pretty little lost kitten found his way into the house, and after we had given him milk, we told him to go home.



But he came back again, meowing as though to ask us to keep him, and we knew if we left him to run in the street he would starve, or fall a prey to dogs, and die a painful death. So we made up our minds to let Sam stay with us, and try and teach him not to touch the birds. One of our canaries was very tame. He came in and out of his cage as he liked, and would perch on my pen as I wrote, and stand beside my plate at meal times, waiting for any crumbs I liked to give him. As it would have been a great grief to us if this dear little friend had been killed by the cat, we at first kept a close watch on Sam. When Dickey was flying about the room we ordered Sam to sit still on his stool, and if he so much as looked at Dickey we gave him a pat, to  teach him his duty. But after a time we found that Dickey would take care of himself, and that Sam knew our wishes too well to try to hurt our pet. After a. time Dickey struck up a friendship with Sam, and the two used to have fine games together. Dickey would stand on the edge of the table and give Sam a. little call-note. The cat would then put up his tail and make believe he was going to spring on Dickey, who would fly round and round Sam's head, and at last light on it, just over his nose. It was the prettiest sight to see Sam trot gently round the room with the dear little bird on his head, singing all the time as though he enjoyed his ride.



Sometimes, by way of reward for Sam's kindness, Dickey, before he flew back to his cage, would give him a little peck, on which Sam would shake himself and pretend to be angry. In Sam's time we had a little white dog, named Tray. Sam seemed to think it was his duty to see that Tray kept her place, and if ever she tried to join in the fun, she got such a pat from Sam's paw as made her glad to creep into her bed and look on from that safe spot. You see the cat Sam and dog Tray in the picture. It was drawn one day when Tray had told Sam she would not be put upon, but would have her game with Dickey as well as himself. Sam stood still and let Tray bark and put out her tongue, and look fierce; but he made Tray know, too, by the look of his eye, that she might not dare to move near Dickey. As soon as the bird flew into his cage, Sam gave Tray such a look, as though he would say, ''You can leave off making that noise, I have done with you now;" and then, witch as much pride as a cat can show, with a slow step walked away. And now I will tell you a very clever thing Sam used to do, and it will prove to you how much sense some cats have. It was the duty of one of the servants to turn on the gas every morning, and as she knew there would be waste if she put it on to the full, she was careful only to turn the key halfway. Sometimes, however, she found, to her great surprise, that in an hour or two the gas was turned on to the full. Everybody in the house declared they had not done it, and we all felt it was very strange. At last, one day the maid saw Sam jump on the shelf close to the gas-key, and then with his paw push it as far as it would go. When he had done this, Sam jumped down and went straight to the stove, looking very pleased with himself and the extra heat. How Sam found out that by giving the gas-key a push he could get more warmth from the stove we never knew, and it was by far the most wonderful thing we have ever known done by a cat. Sam lived to a good old age. He saw Dickey and Tray and other friends die, and his way of mourning them was never to take any new friends in their place. After Dickey died, Sam used to turn his head away when he passed the cage with a new bird in it; and he took no notice, either good or bad, of the nice little dog we had in the place of Tray. But, as Sam had a heart full of love, when his bird and dog friends were dead, he grew more and more fond of his mistress, and he was never happy unless by my side. He used to follow me in my walks through the village, and the only way I could induce him to leave me was by telling him I was going to church. As he had once followed me in, and had been turned out very quickly, he knew he could not be allowed to go there. You will not wonder that we missed Sam sadly when he died, and that we felt we could never have such another faithful cat friend as Sam had been.


Tim's False Friend.

One day a sparrow saw a canary, whose name was Tim, put in a warm open window to get the fresh air. The cage had every comfort, and there was seed, water, green-meat, sugar, lots of nice perches, and a bath. As Tim ate his seed he now and then sent one out at the window, which the sparrow got, who then sat and waited till another seed fell that way. Thus the birds came to have some talk together, and to be quite friendly. "Why do you not come into the fields?" said the sparrow to Tim, ''it is so nice out there.'' "'Why do I not come out?" repeated Tim, at a loss for an answer; "oh, because this is my home, and I do not care to leave it." ''Stuff,'' said the sparrow; ''I do not believe any bird would stay shut up in a cage for ever if he could help it. I think the fact is, you cannot get out." "And I think you are rude, sparrow," said Tim. ''Anyhow, I shall not come out to please you." Now this sparrow had a bad heart, for though, being bred a free bird, he could not himself be happy in a cage, he Alas full of envy for all the comforts Tim had, and he liked to think he had made him less content with his lot. If the sparrow was bad, Tim was silly not to remember that he and all his race had been bred in a cage, and that he could not get his own living, or fly about like a wild bird. So soon as the sparrow had flown off, with a saucy chirp, Tim gave way to low spirits, and thought it hard he could not fly away too. For the rest of the day Tim sat moping in his cage, and would not sing or eat much; but he kept a look out for the sparrow, who came the next morning to pick up stray seeds. "Well, Tim," said he, ''here you are still; for ever in the same place. I do wonder how you bear such a dull life. I have had a lovely hour in the hedges. If you only knew how nice it is you would come out at once.'' "You see,'' said Tim, ''I am used to this way of life, and I doubt if I could get on as you wild birds do in the lanes and fields. I fancy I should feel as strange out there as you would in my cage." "Not a bit of it," said the sparrow; ''you would enjoy yourself very much. Why not lift that catch of your cage door, and just try how you like being free? You could come back as soon as you liked." Poor Tim was so weak as to listen to this false friend, who had no other wish than to ruin him; and he tried if he could lift the catch. It was not easy for him to do; but the sparrow told him not to be faint-hearted, and to try again. So Tim worked at the wire till at last he could open the door. "Come along," said the sparrow, ''I will show you the way." But Tim, who had never before used his wings, found that he could only fly a very little way, and he had to rest on the first tree he came to. When he looked out for the sparrow he was nowhere to be seen. After a little rest, Tim thought it really was nice to be free. So he tried to have another little flight, but again found that he could not go far. Soon Tim began to feel hungry, and looked about for seed; but there was nothing he could eat anywhere. So he thought he would go back home; and he gave his call-note, in the hope that the sparrow would return and show him the way. As he did not come, Tim thought he would try and find the way himself; but he could not tell how it was he could see no signs of his cage or even of the house where his mistress lived. Every hour the poor bird grew more and more faint for want of food; and as night drew near he felt most sad at heart. When it was quite dark, Tim put his head under his wing, feeling sure that when daylight came he should find his way home. As soon as morn broke, Tim heard the wild birds chirp, and he too shook his feathers and flew out of the tree in which he had roosted. How hungry he was; the other birds were eating flies and grubs, and pecking up heartily, but Tim could eat none of this food, and he thought if he could not get home soon he should die of want. Just when Tim's spirits were as low as they well could be, up flew his old friend, the sparrow. ''Take care," cried he, ''they are on the lookout for you at home, Tim. If you do not mind they will catch and put you into the cage again.'' "Oh 1 wish they would catch me. I do so want some seed. Please, sparrow, do be so kind as to show me the way home. "Nonsense," said the sparrow, "you will soon get used to our life; here is a lot of my brothers and sisters coming to see and cheer you up." "What a smart bird!" cried one of these sparrows. "Who are you?" said another. "Oh, you know," cried a cross old sparrow, "this is a spy we won't have him among us; we must drive him out. How dare you come here, you pale, sleek thing?" he said to Tim, who now shook for fright: "Peck him," cried one. ''Pull out his fine feathers," said another. ''Kill him," cried a third. "If you please, good friends," said Tim, in a meek tone, ''I do not want to stay here. I have lost my way. If any one will lead me home I will give him my sugar, and as much seed as he likes." In answer, three of the sparrows jumped on a branch just over his head, and told him he should never go home alive, for they all thought, say what he might, he was a spy. Then they all set upon poor Tim, and pecked him till he fell to the ground more dead than alive.



Tim then gave himself up for lost ; he could never get up without help, he knew; and he thought he could only live a very short time, in pain and misery. When he had lain a little while on the ground, Tim heard the well-known voice of his mistress, and his heart gave a bound as he thought she might find him, and that at least he might die in her kind hand. And she did find Tim, and many were the tears she shed when she saw the sad state her pet was in. With much love and care the lady took home her little bird, and she washed his wounds and gave him a drop of wine and water, and laid him in his cage on soft wool, and nursed and tended him for many days. Then Tim's life came back to him, but the sight of one of his eyes was gone, from a cruel peck one of the wild birds had given him. When Tim could once more hop about on his perch, his false friend, the sparrow, came to the window. "How do you do? '' said he. ''I hope you do not bear any malice, for it was not my fault that you were hurt?" "I think," said Tim, gently, "it was not your fault that I was not killed. I bear no malice, sparrow; indeed, I thank you, for you have taught me not to listen to bad advice, as well as to know when I am well off, and to be thankful and content with my lot.'' Then the sparrow flew off, and never again paid Tim a visit.


Juno and Her Friend Kit.

Some people said Juno was too small for a watch-dog and too large for a pet. But we found she could be both of these, and she lived with us as a true friend for many years, and of all the dogs I ever knew, Juno had the most sense. We brought her up from the time she was three months old, and she soon learnt not only what we meant by our words, but to know by the tone of our voices and the look in our eyes if we were pleased with her. We used to say Juno was a lady-like dog, for she had such nice tidy ways, and was very gentle in her manners. When she had been out of doors, Juno was not like some little boys and girls who forget to rub their shoes, for she would not come off the mat in the hall, if her feet were dirty, until she had tried to get the mud off. If Juno could not do this, she would stand still and whine till we came and gave her feet a rub for her. Juno would not take ever such a tid-bit from our left hand, and would not eat anything from a plate in the dining room unless we spread a paper on the floor and said, ''There, Juno, is your cloth.'' Juno had a rug of her own laid every night at my door, and if this were not given to her, she would not lie upon the door-mat. No doubt she knew that if she made her bed on a sheep-skin it would soon be unfit to be seen.



When the maid came to call me in the morning, Juno used to walk to the side of the bed, put up her paw to shake hands, then go and wait patiently outside my door till I was ready to go down stairs. Once I was so ill and weak I could not put my hand out of bed to shake Juno's paw, so the nurse had to lift her up, for she would not leave my room until I had done so. Then she lay all day on the mat at my door, and did not ask to be let in till bedtime, when she was again lifted up to say ''good night." When I was able once more to go down stairs, Juno seemed to know I could not bear any noise or play, and she crept about the room and looked at every one as they came in, as if to tell them I must not be disturbed. Now I will tell you a story which will show you how anxious Juno was to serve me. One day we were out walking, when a sharp shower of rain came on, and Mrs. Bence, a kind farmer's wife, lent us an umbrella. A week went by before we could walk so far as Mrs. Bence's house; then Juno and I set out to return the umbrella. It was an ugly, large, though useful, old umbrella; and when Juno sat up on her hind legs and asked with her eyes if she should carry it for me, I said, "No, thank you, for it is too heavy for you." Mrs. Bence had a great deal to tell us about the umbrella. It had been her father's, she said, and not the best silk one to be bought in all London would be so good to her as this was. When she had told us all this, Mrs. Bence put the umbrella in a corner of the room, and having once more thanked her for the loan of it, Juno and I said "Goodbye." As we went along, I thought Juno did not seem happy. She looked often at my hands, and jumped up as if to put me in mind of something. When we got home it was Juno's dinner-time, but she would not eat anything, seemed ill at ease, watched the door, and the first time it was opened out she ran. In an hour's time she came back with Mrs. Bence's big umbrella in her mouth. The good dog no doubt thought I had left it at the farm by mistake, and so lost no time in fetching it for me. Mrs. Bence told me the next day, that when she saw Juno running down the road with the umbrella she cried, "Stop thief,'' but that the dog ran all the faster. Juno, I am sure, must have felt much hurt to have been called a thief when she thought she was doing her duty by her mistress. Juno, I am sorry to say, had one great fault. She was jealous of any other dog, or of a cat, of which we took any notice. Once my maid had put the dressing glass on the floor of my room, and Juno was so silly as to bark at her own shadow in it for half an hour. She thought, no doubt, we had brought home another dog, and she grew so angry that she could not see she was wasting her strength on her own shadow. The cook had a cat, whose name was Kit, and Juno seemed to live in great dread lest she should come into my rooms.



One day Kit came up stairs with cook to take orders, and crept slyly under the sofa, so that cook left the room without seeing her. Soon after, Juno and Kit were left alone there together, and the dog then took on herself to give the cat a piece of her mind. She first told her to come out from under the sofa, and then drove her round and round the table till she was ready to drop. At last Juno grew tired of teasing Kit, and then made her jump on to the top of the bookcase. There we found her, standing with her tail spread out like a great brush, and Juno mounting guard, with a low growl, as much as to say, ''You had better keep your own place in future, ma'am; you see what will happen if you come into mine." Juno, we knew, used to have dreams, for when fast asleep on her mat she would make an odd noise, as if she were in some sort of trouble. As soon as she awoke she would come up to me, and sniff to see if I had any other dog or a cat in my lap. Then she would go and smell in every corner of the room, and at last, when her nose could find nothing out, would look up to the ceiling as though she had dreamed some rival had gone away through it. So you see that, even when asleep, Juno was jealous, and dreamed that her mistress had given her love to some other dog. Now, I have one more story to tell you of Juno and Kit, to show you how they grew to be friends when both were in trouble.



Cook and I were obliged to leave home at the same time for a short stay at the sea-side, and we were sorry we could not take Juno and Kit with us. I bade Juno goodbye, and told her to be good, and mind the house till my return; and when the poor dog found I was going to leave her behind, she lay down on her mat and could not stir for grief. Kit was also very sad, and when we had gone, went to her basket under the table, and did not leave it until Juno marched into the kitchen and asked her to come and. lie on her mat. All the rest of the day the dog and cat kept together, and were great friends, and Juno invited Kit to sleep on the mat beside her. The next morning Juno went all over the house to make sure I was not hid away anywhere, and then she and Kit put their heads together and agreed to start in search of their friends. My sister lived about five miles from my home, and Juno had often taken a drive over there, and knew her way very well. Now, she told Kit that it was very likely their friends had gone to South lands, and that they had better go and fetch them back. You can think how surprised my sister was to see Juno and Kit at her door, both of them looking tired and dusty. ''Why Juno, old dog, what brings you here?" said she. For answer, Juno put her nose in my sister's hand, and her great eyes looked up, as if asking, ''Where is my dear mistress?''



"You had better go over the house, Juno, and see if you can find her," said my sister, ''for I think that must be what you have come for." Kit kept close to her friend; but as soon as Juno had put her nose to the drawing-room mat, she seemed sure I was not in that house, and giving my sister a look of thanks, she rubbed against Kit, and they both ran off together. It was late at night when Juno and Kit got home, and they were very tired and in want of food, for they would not stay to take anything at Southlands. After this the dog and cat gave up trying to find us, and kept together, like friends in trouble, till the day both cook and myself returned. As soon as we had all said ''How do you do?'' to each other, Kit ran into the kitchen, and never thought of coming up to see Juno, or sleep on her mat again. But Juno after this was kind to Kit, and never drove her out of the room if she came in with cook to see me. Once Kit had a dear little kitten, and Juno took a fancy to it. It was such fun to see Juno with the pretty little thing in her mouth, and Kit walking after her with as much pride as a mother whose baby is in her nurse's arms. Then Juno would lay the kitten on her own mat, lick her, and leave her to her mother; but if I took Kitty up, she was cross and shook herself, as much as to say, "Kitty is my pet, do leave her to me." We never knew what was the cause, but Kitty fell ill and died, and we could not tell whether her mother or Juno was the most sorry for her loss. The night after she died, Juno had Kit to sleep on her mat at my door, and she made much of her, as though trying to comfort her for the loss of her little one. For many years Juno lived to be our faithful friend and companion, and you will be glad to know her end was without pain. One night, she, being very old, lay down on her mat as usual, and the next morning they told me Juno lay quite still, as if asleep. Then I knew she would never again come in to shake hands with me, and how could I help crying?


Lily's Letters Home.

Walter and Lily Dobson had been born and brought up in London, and they knew nothing whatever of a country life. They had, it is true, gone every year to the seaside for the sake of their health, but there, you know, they had no chance to see anything of the ways of birds or animals. So it was with great joy, one fine summer day, the children heard they were going to pay a visit to their aunt, Mrs. Leman, who lived at Burton, in Yorkshire. When Lily left home she gave her mother a promise to write as long an account as she could every week of all she saw and did at Burton, Lily, you must know, was but seven years old, so she could only write little letters, and as Walter was still younger, of course he could not do even so much. The first letter Lily wrote was all about the journey, and how, though people said it was a fast train, she thought they never would get to Burton. Then she told her mother what a lovely place the old Hall was, and something about the park, and the boat on the lake, and the fine old trees, and of how kind dear Auntie Leman was to them both. Lily's second letter was an account of the visits she and Walter paid to cottages and to farm-houses. "Dearest Mamma,'' said she, ''we have seen nothing yet so funny as the pigs. I had no idea they were such clever animals, because I heard Nurse say one day that "Toby was as stupid as a pig." Mrs. Grant, you know, is the wife of Auntie's coachman, and she lives in a cottage in the park. We went to see her on one of her washing days, and she said she would show us how she used up her soap suds. Well, Walter and I both thought she would fetch a pipe and blow bubbles, but it was nothing so babyish, I can tell you. Mrs. Grant took a scrubbing brush and a great pail of suds, and we followed her into the yard to the pig stye. As soon as the old sow saw her coming she really danced. I wonder, dear Mamma, if you ever saw so lively a pig? Walter and I clapped our hands, for Auntie said it was as good as a play.



When Mrs. Grant went into the stye with her pail and brush, piggy stood as still as a mouse, giving a low grunt, and shaking her curly tail. ''Now then, my pet," Mamma, fancy a pig being called a pet said Mrs. Grant; "she shall have a nice scrub, that she shall." The pet stood quite still, and Mrs. Grant scrubbed away at her back Just as cook scrubs the kitchen table, and the fun of it was, Mrs. Sow liked it so much. When it was done, Mrs. Grant's pet looked lovely, "fit," as she said, "for the Queen's drawing-room," Many a grunt, by way of thanks, was given to Mrs. Grant, who said the pig knew Monday was washing-day as well as she did, and as she had none of the work, liked it by far the best of the two. ''When the scrubbing was over, Mrs. Grant went into a shed close by the stye; and do you know. Mamma, we really thought the sow would have climbed out of it. She put her fore paws on the top rail, and stood upon her hind ones, and tried all she could do to get over. "We soon saw why Mrs. Sow was in such a state, for the peas were kept in that shed, and she knew it, and Mrs. Grant said she was as fond of peas as we were of sweeties. After we had given the nice old sow a good lot of the peas, Mrs. Grant took us to see her other pigs fed; but we thought them greedy and selfish, because they almost knocked one another over to get served first. But Mrs. Grant said they were only young, and had not been taught manners like the old sow, so we must not be hard upon them.''


Lily's Letter about the Horse Rory.

''Dearest Mamma, we have been over the stables this morning with Auntie, and she has given Walter a pony to ride whilst we stay at Burton; and she says, if you had a stable for him, we might bring him home with us. I am to have Rory, Auntie's dear old horse, though, of course, I cannot ride by myself yet, and the groom will lead him. Cousin Bertie laughs at me, and says I shall have to be tied on the saddle, or else be held on; but you know, dear Mamma, I am not such a baby as that.



Rory is a tall horse, and very gentle, and there is no fear of his running away with a little girl like me. Auntie used to ride him almost every day for years, and when she was ill nobody else was allowed to use him, and they said he seemed to fret after her. I do not wonder Rory should miss her, for she goes every day into his stable and takes him a piece of bread and an apple, and when the horse hears her footstep or her voice, long before she reaches the door, he shows signs of great joy. But if anybody else gives Rory nice things he does not seem to care more for them than he does for his everyday corn; so it shows he loves Auntie for herself, and not for what she takes him. "A very strange thing happened once about Rory, and not all the clever people on the farm  could make it out for a long time. Because Rory is such a pet, he has a nice stable shut off from the others and the door is fastened by a bolt, which can be opened from the inside. ''You remember what a long, sad illness Auntie once had, and so I am sure does Rory. One morning, when some weeks had gone by without his seeing his dear mistress, the groom found the stable empty, the door open, and Rory gone. Nobody knew anything about him, but at last, after a long search, they found Rory standing close to the stone steps on which Auntie always mounts her horse, looking, as if he would say, "I am here, do come for a ride.' The groom saw Rory was fretting for his mistress, so he spoke kindly, and took him back to the stable. After this the groom took care to see that the door was safely bolted at night, but for all that, Rory got out several times, and was always found at Auntie s mounting place. The groom thought it must be one of the boys who let Rory out, for the fun of the thing, and so he made up his mind to watch, He got up very early one morning, and crept quietly to a spot where he could see the stable door, and you can think how surprised the man was when he saw Rory with his mouth push back the bolt. The door also was soon opened by the clever horse, and out he walked, with slow step, to the old" place, where he hoped to find his dear friend. ''It was not thought well to take any no means to prevent the horse going to the stone, and he continued to do so until Auntie got better. At first she was not able to go to the stable, so Rory was taken round to pay her a visit under her window. From the day he saw Auntie, he left off going to the mounting stone, for no doubt he understood then the reason she could not ride, and knew also she would not forget her dear horse Rory, who had such a true and faithful love for her.



Lily's Robin Letter.

''You know, dearest Mamma."' wrote Lily, ''how we have longed to see a Robin Red-breast. We get any number of sparrows in London, but not even when it was very cold and hard weather has a Robin ever come to get any crumbs at our windows. Auntie told Blake, the gardener, if he found a nest of Robins to let us know, and so one morning he came and asked us to go and look at one, built in a thick creeper against a wall. Blake fixed a ladder quite safe for me, and although I was a little afraid, never having been on one before, I went up it, and saw the nest with four tiny little heads peeping out. Blake said the old birds were close by, and that they would come back and feed the baby Robins as soon as we were gone. Afterwards Walter got a little peep at the nest, but Blake said we must not stay long, because the parent birds would be uneasy if we did. A day or two afterwards Blake told us he thought some of the boys in the village must have seen us looking at the nest, for they had found it out, and if he had not happened to be near at the time they would have carried it away. Blake was busy at work, and he thought he heard a Robin cry, as though he was in trouble, so he went at once to see what was the matter.



The poor father Robin was on a bough watching three cruel boys who had got his nest and his dear little ones, and Blake said he was wild with grief. Dear Mamma, was it not lucky Blake was there at the time, for he went after the boys at once, and took the nest from them? He put it back in its place, and he said the old birds flew round him all the time. Then he went a little way off and watched, and very soon they came and fed the little ones, and they were once more all happy together.


Lily's Letter about Tom-Tit.

"Dearest Mamma, I have the most interesting tales to tell you about Auntie's wild birds. She has made many of them as tame as our canaries. There is a sparrow we call No-Tail, for he has lost all the feathers out of it, and he looks as much like a ball as a bird. He comes very often to the window of the morning room, and brings a lot of little sparrows to pick up crumbs. "No-Tail does not go off when Auntie opens the window, but flies about her hand, and shows the little ones how to pick up. If he wants food, No-Tail flies up to the window, and taps it with his beak, sometimes giving a loud chirp, as if getting cross at being kept waiting. But the dearest little bird is a Tom-Tit, which lives partly in and partly out of the house, and goes to and from Auntie's room much in the same way as the canary goes in and out of his cage. Tom roosts in Auntie's bedroom on a book-shelf, which has a rail at the top, and he never thinks of getting up in the morning till Auntie calls him. Then he helps her to dress, for he pulls the buttons of her bodice through the holes with his little beak, and he no doubt thinks she cannot do her hair without him, for he perches on her head, and she is obliged to keep driving him off. When it is time to go to breakfast, Auntie carries Tom on her finger down stairs. Then he flies about the room till she begins to eat, when he makes believe to fight her for a bit of her toast, and he makes fun for all of us by his merry, pretty ways. As soon as breakfast is over, Tom has a saucer of cold water put for him, and after he has taken a bath in it, the window is opened, and he goes out for the day or for a few hours, as he likes, always coming back before it is time to roost. One evening Auntie was in trouble, for as Tom was later than usual in getting home she feared he might have been hurt in some way.



But after all he got home in time for supper like a dear good boy. Of course we asked Auntie how Tom grew to be so tame, and she told us that she found him one day when walking in the garden. He had somehow got away too soon from the nest, and the old birds had lost him, and poor Tom was almost dead for want of food. So Auntie took him home, and soon fed him into a strong bird, and he became so fond of her that, although, when he was able to take care of himself, she gave him his liberty, he came back to her, and has stayed with her for three years, as I have told you. Auntie thinks Tom never goes far away from the house, because nearly always when she goes into the garden he comes and hops about her, and when she calls, is sure to come in a few minutes. Is it not nice, dear Mamma, to have a little bird to be such a friend of its own free will? When we get home, Walter and I mean to try if we can tame some of our London sparrows to bring little ones for crumbs like Auntie's No-Tail. How I do wish you could hear the birds singing together, almost before it is light in the morning. The blackbird is the chief songster now, and he has such a sweet, low note. When we first came the thrush was most heard, and his note sounded just like "Make haste up.'' Sometimes, you know, dear Mamma, at home I am lazy about getting out of bed, but here I can hardly wait for Nurse to call me; and very often creep to the window to watch the birds getting food for their young ones, and then I think how much more I should enjoy it all if you were with me.


Lily's Letter about Johnny's Fall.

"I have a sad story to tell you, dearest Mamma, about one of the boys who stole Robin's nest. Blake says they are all three bad boys, always playing truant and getting into mischief. He scolded them well when they took our Robins, and said one of these days something bad would happen if they did not leave off their idle ways; but they only laughed at Blake, and made up their minds to go birds nesting again, the first chance they could get. Johnny Jinks is the youngest of these boys; his mother is a widow and she has hard work to get her living by taking a few flowers and a little fruit into the town for sale. She tells Auntie that Johnny is very good, and worlds in her bit of garden out of school hours, and that it is the other two boys, Joe and Sam Bond, who are always leading him into trouble. One day last week Johnny, as his mother thought, went off to school in the morning, but really he was in the wood with Joe and Sam, looking after birds' nests. Those two boys are bigger than Johnny, and if there is anything difficult or dangerous to be done, they make him do it. The way they manage is to tell Johnny he dare not do anything they want him to do, and that puts the little fellow's pride up, and he tries to do it at once. The boys had been out all the morning in the wood, and had not taken any nests, but at last they saw a linnet's nest rather high up in a tree. Johnny said it was out of reach. "Stuff," said Joe, "you are a little coward. I could get it." ''And so can I," said Johnny. "We will see if I am a coward." So up the tree the boy went, the others watching him from below. He grasped the nest, containing three little linnets, and shouted to the others. Johnny was coming down the tree with the nest in one hand, and in two minutes would have been safe, had he not planted both his feet on a rotten branch. It gave way, and in an instant the poor boy fell to the earth.



Joe and Sam ran up to him, and they thought he was dead, for they could neither make him speak nor move. "Now you will see what cowards those boys were, for they ran out of the wood, leaving poor Johnny lying there senseless; and worse than this, they went home to dinner and never told anybody what had happened to Johnny. When evening came, Mrs. Jinks was anxious because he had not come home, and on asking about him at the schoolhouse, she found out that he had played truant with the Bond boys. At first Joe and Sam pretended they knew nothing about Johnny, but afterwards they got frightened and told the truth, saying they believed he was dead. Poor Mrs. Jinks could hardly make her legs carry her to the wood, she was so grieved about her boy. At last, guided by Joe, she reached the spot where Johnny was lying, and, to her great joy, found he was not killed, though very badly hurt. Johnny was faint from pain and from having had no food, so they gave him some milk, and as soon as possible two men carried him home and fetched the doctor. Then it was found that Johnny's leg was broken, and that he must go to the hospital. The poor boy was very sorry for his fault, and for all the trouble he had brought on his mother; and he told her that when he gets well he will try and make up for it, and be a good, dutiful son to her always. I am sure he will never again play truant or be led away by such bad companions as the Bonds, for he has seen what sort of friends they were, to leave him lying as if dead in the wood all day. ''Walter and I wished to know what became of the three little linnets, and Mrs. Bond said she was afraid they had been killed in falling with Johnny. Of course we were sorry, but Auntie says it is better so than that they should have got into the hands of the Bond boys, who would very likely have made them die slow and painful deaths.


Lily's Letter about the Swallows and Cat.

"Now, dearest Mamma, I must tell you about the Swallows. They have built some nests in the eaves over Auntie's room, and they allow the Tom-Tit to visit them. They fight sparrows and other birds, but they seem to know that Tom will do them no harm, and they are so friendly with him. You must know, dear Mamma, that Auntie keeps no cat of her own, but there is one belonging to little Nell, at the lodge.



She is a lovely cat, and Nell is very fond of her. One day Auntie sent for Nell, to give her a little present. She came into the room with the cat in her arms, dressed out in all sorts of smart ribbons, and Auntie made us laugh by asking Nell if she was not afraid of making Pussy vain by so much finery. You know, the window of Auntie's room is a French one, and opens on to the garden, so when Nell put Puss down, she took it into her head to walk out. Well, we suppose the Swallows thought Puss was there for no good, and they began to "twit, twit" to one another, as if to say, "Beware of the cat." Now, I do think Puss is too well fed to care about a young swallow for her supper; but, of course, when they went on in that way, she looked up at them. The Swallows thought, no doubt, that it would be best to drive Puss away if they could, and so two of them flew down close to her head with such a flap, flap, that she ran off in a great fright. Faster and faster ran the cat, the swallows flying close to her head, and making a great noise. At last she got in such a state that she seemed rather to fly with the birds than to run. We cannot think how long the race would have lasted, had not Puss jumped through an open window at the lodge, and so got away from the Swallows. Mrs. Jones came out to see what had put Puss in such a fright, for she said "the cat shook all over like a leaf." She told us she saw the Swallows flying about for some time, as though watching for another chance to teach Puss not to look again at their nests.


Lily's Farewell Letter.

The last week that Lily and Walter were to stay at Burton, she wrote: ''You know, dearest Mamma, how glad we shall be to see you again, but if only you could come and be with us, I should never wish to leave the country. We shall miss very much, in London, all the birds and animals which have amused us so much, and which we really love. I shall have much more to say of all we have learned about them than I can write; but now I must tell you about a wonderful talking Raven which belongs to Auntie. He is a large black bird, with a great beak and strong claws, whilst his eye is so bright and so fierce you cannot help feeling afraid of him. The first time he came and perched on a rail close to me, as I was watching the chickens, I was so frightened, I ran away. However, there was no real cause for fear, for Ralph is quite gentle, and, as you will see by my story, has a very kind heart. Once, when Auntie went away from home, she left Gun, the old housedog, to the care of Mrs. Jones, at the lodge. His kennel was put in the little yard, where Mrs. Jones tied him up and left him. The next day she was so ill she could not get up, and poor Gun was left in the yard without food, and quite forgotten. Now Ralph had always been friends with Gun, and as he was out on his travels he heard Gun whine, and paid a visit to him to see what was the matter. Ralph saw in a moment that poor old Gun was hungry, and he went at once to Cook, and tried to make her understand he wanted some meat. But Cook, who knew nothing of Gun's trouble, and had given Ralph a good breakfast, told him he was a greedy bird, and had better take himself off. "Please do. Cook," said Ralph, over and over again; but she took no notice, and at last he made up his mind to steal some meat for his friend.



Ralph hopped about as though he was thinking of nothing at all, and the moment Cook's back was turned, he caught up two slices of the mutton she had just cut up for hash, and one of the men saw him take it straight to Gun in the yard. Almost as soon as the Raven had gone, Cook missed the mutton, and was very cross indeed, for she had only just enough for the servants' dinner. Ralph was much too clever to let Cook see him come again into the kitchen whilst the meat was about; so he watched till she went into the garden to get some herbs, and then slyly made his way to the dish of meat and got two more slices. 'You can think. Mamma dear, how angry Cook was at having been twice cheated in this way, and she ran out to see if she could find Ralph. The man who had seen him take the meat to Gun told her where to find him, and when she came near the yard she saw such a pretty sight she could not be cross with Ralph any more. He was perched on a sort of stone bench with the slices of mutton in his beak, and Gun was begging to him, just as our little Toby at home does for sugar, only Gun was not kept so long waiting as Toby sometimes is, for Ralph soon gave him the meat. Perhaps it was because he saw Cook coming. As soon as she got into the yard, Ralph set up his loud laugh, and as he flew off cried, "Oh Cook! oh Cook"' Since he had stolen the meat to feed poor hungry Gun, Cook forgave Ralph, and she went home and fried eggs and ham to make up enough for the dinner, and so you see nobody was much the worse.



Illustrations by Harrison Weir and Others



Rediscovering the Gelatine Factory



The Gelatine Factory

A comprehensive account 1899

from Round About Warwick


George Nelson



Nelson's Emscote Mills 2009



T B Dale


Charles Nelson


The Nelson Brothers


William Nelson


George H Nelson


Sir E Montague Nelson

Charles Nelson's

Cement Works at Stockton


A Visit to

Messrs. G. Nelson, Dale & Co. 1880



Nelson Works

Tomoana New Zealand


Guy Montague Nelson

Nelson Village

Charles St, Warwick


The Lawn at Emscote


Nelson's Lozenges

 packaging & adds

Nelson's Club

Isinglass Wars

Swinborne v Nelson


Nelson's 1950's

Warwick Advertiser account 1953



Descendants of George Nelson


George Wyatt A city trade jubilee



Nelson's Heritage Walk


Gelatine and its uses


Davis Gelatine


Home Comforts


Mary Hooper



Mary Hooper Letters

 Mary Hooper Book Collection


Nelson's Home Comforts

Mary Hooper


Wives and Housewives

Mary Hooper


Little Dinners

Mary Hooper


Cookery for Invalids

Mary Hooper


Every Day Meals

Mary Hooper


Hints on Cookery

Mary Hooper

Good Plain Cookery

Mary Hooper


Handbook for the

Breakfast Table

Mary Hooper


Weekly Telegraph

Cookery Book

Mary Hooper

Our Dog Prin

Mary Hooper

Ways & Tricks of Animals

Mary Hooper


Lily's Letters from the Farm

Mary Hooper

Charles Wentworth Wass

Round About Warwick

Walter Nelson

Fleur De Lys

The Pie Factory at Emscote

Sir E Montague Nelson's Cuttings, Letters and Keepsakes Circa 1882 Randolph Turpin


Cookery & Home Comforts

Mrs Wigley


Byron Accused






Mary Hooper Books Wanted


Rock's Royal Cabinet

Leamington & Warwick 1880





Anthony Leahy



Anthony Leahy


Art & Photography

Anthony Leahy


A Major Arcana

Kathleen Forrest


The Drumroom

Anthony Leahy


Compiled for the benefit of Warwickians and Others by Anthony James Leahy




 A Walk in Warwick






Book Wanted Handbook For The Breakfast Table

Book Wanted Wives and Housewives A Story For The Times


3 The Butts






PAT Portable Appliance Testing


Amber Leahy Graphic Design