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When the top came, then another turn, then the bottom, then another turn again, the poor young horse was in despair. He grew quite dizzy, and was glad, like Dobbin, to shut his eyes, that he might get rid of the sight of the same never-ending clods.
"Well," he said, when the gears were taken off, "if this is your ploughing, I hope I shall have no more of it. But his hopes were vain; for many days he ploughed, till he got tired of complaining of the weary work.
In the hard winter, when comfortably housed in the warm stable, he cried out to Dobbin, as he was eating some delicious oats, "I say Dobbin, this is better than ploughing; do you remember that field? I hope I shall never have anything to do with that business again. What in the world could be the use of walking up a field just for the sake of walking down again? It's enough to make one laugh to think of it." "How do you like your oats?" said Dobbin, "Delicious!" said the young horse. "Then please to remember, if there were no ploughing, there would be no oats."*
Precious, valuable, costly. Out of his senses, crazed, mad. Evidence, statement as to what was seen or witnessed, testimony. Declare, say publicly.
THE OAK-TREE.f Once — a long time ago—two young men, named Edmund and Oswald, appeared before a judge.
Edmund said to the judge, "When I was going on a journey, three years ago, I lent to this Oswald, then my best friend, a valuable ring with precious stones, to keep for me. But now he will not give the ring up to me."
* Leisure Hour. t Schmid.
Oswald laid his hand upon his breast, and said, "I swear, upon my honor, I know nothing about the ring. My friend Edmund must be out of his senses in this matter."
The judge said, "Edmund, can nobody give evidence that you gave the ring to him?"
Edmund replied, "Alas! there was nobody near; there was only an old oak-tree in the field, under which we took leave of one another."
Oswald said, " I am ready to declare, that I know no more about the tree than I do about the ring."
The judge said, "Edmund, go and bring me a twig from the tree. I wish to see it. Meanwhile, do you, Oswald, wait here till Edmund returns."
Edmund went. After a little while the judge remarked, "Where, now, can Edmund be remaining so long?"
Oswald said, "Oh, sir, he cannot come back again so soon. The tree is above a mile distant from this place."
Then said the judge, " 0, you godless liar! You know as much about the ring as about the tree!"
Oswald was obliged to give up the ring, as well as to rest himself in prison for a year.
THE COTTAGER TO HER INFANT.
The days are cold, the nights are long,
Save thee, my pretty love!
The kitten sleeps upon the hearth,
Nay! start not at that sparkling light;
And wake when it is day.— Wordsworth.
IDLENESS HAS THE MOST LABOR.
A PEASANT was going on a journey with his son Thomas. "Look," said the father, on the way, "there is a piece of horse-shoe lying on the road; pick it up and put it into your pocket."
"Oh!" said Thomas, " it is not worth the trouble of stooping down."
The father picked up the iron without saying anything more, and put it into his pocket. In the next village he sold it to the smith for a few farthings, and bought some cherries with tho money. They both travelled on. The sun was shining very fiercely; far and wide there was no house, no tree, nor spring to be seen; and Thomas was almost fainting with thirst.
His father now let drop—as if by chance—a cherry. Thomas picked it up as eagerly as if it were gold, and directly put it into his mouth. After a while his father let another cherry fall, and Thomas stooped down as eagerly for that. In this way, from time to time, his father let him pick up all the cherries; and when Thomas had devoured the last, he turned round to him laughing, and said, "See, now, if you had been willing to stoop down but once for the horse-shoe, you need not have had to stoop so often for the cherries.*
Sever, separate. Rind, skin. Tempest, storm.
Under the arms of a goodly oak tree
There was of swine a large company;
They were making a rude repast,
Grunting as they crunch'd the mast.
Then they trotted away: for the wind blew high ;—
One acorn they left, no more might you spy.
Next came a raven, who lik'd not such folly,
He belong'd, I believe, to the witch Melancholy!
Blacker was he than blackest jet;
Flew low in the rain; his feathers were wet.
He pick'd up an acorn and buried it straight,
By the side of a river both deep and great.
Where then did the raven go?
He went high and low, Over hill, over dale, did the black raven go! Many autumns, many springs Travell'd he, with wandering wings; Many summers, many winters, I can't tell half his adventures. At length he return'd, and with him a she; And the acorn was grown a large oak tree. They built them a nest in the topmost bough, And young ones they had, and were jolly enow. But soon came a woodman in leathern guise, His brow like a pent-house hung over his eyes. He'd an axe in his hand and he nothing spoke, But with many a hem! and a sturdy stroke, At last he brought down the poor raven's own oak. His young ones were kill'd, for they could not depart, His wife she died of a broken heart! The branches from off it the woodman did sever, And they floated it down on the course of the river: They saw'd it to planks, and its rind they did strip, And" with this tree and others they built up a ship. The ship it was launch'd; but in sight of the land A tempest arose which no ship could withstand. I
It strikes on a rock and the waves rush in fast—
Turn into ridicule, make fun of.
THE LARGE CABBAGE-HEAD. Two journeymen, named Joseph and George, were once going by a vegetable garden near a village.
"Look here!" said Joseph, "what kind of vegetable heads are these?" for so he named the cabbage-heads.
"Ah!" said George, who was a great boaster, "these are not large. I once saw a vegetable with a head which was as large as the parsonage yonder."
Joseph, who was a coppersmith, immediately replied, "That was very well; but I once helped to make a kettle which was as large as the church."
"But what in the world," cried George, "could they want such a large kettle for?"
Joseph said, "Why, to be sure, they wanted it to boil your large cabbage in!"
George was ashamed, and said, "Now I see at once what you mean! You always keep to the truth, and have said this in order to turn my boast into ridicule. Well, I confess I was telling a lie."
Undeniably, certainly, without doubt.
Despise, look down upon. Take amiss, be offended at.
The reverse, the opposite.
Accomodate, make room for, lodge, satisfy.
CLEANLINESS IS NEXT TO GODLINESS. A Cooper from the town was employed to mend some casks for an innkeeper in the country; and after he had finished his work he came into the landlady's room, who brought him a pint of beer.