Monday, July 31, 2017

5-6 Lesson VI. - The singing lesson. - McGuffey's Fifth Eclectic Reader (revised edition)

Jean Ingelow (b. 1830, d. 1897) was born at Boston, Lincolnshire, England. Her fame as a poetess was at once established upon the publication of her "Poems" in 1863; since which time several other volumes have appeared. The most generally admired of her poems are "Songs of Seven" and "The High Tide on the Coast of Lincolnshire." She has also written several successful novels, of which "Off the Skelligs " is the most popular. "Stories Told to a Child," "The Cumberers," "Poor Mat," "Studies for Stories," and "Mopsa, the Fairy" are also well known. Miss Ingelow resided in London, England, and spent much of her time in deeds of charity.


1. A NIGHTINGALE made a mistake;
She sang a few notes out of tune:
Her heart was ready to break,
And she hid away from the moon.
She wrung her claws, poor thing,
But was far too proud to weep;
She tucked her head under her wing,
And pretended to be asleep.

2. A lark, arm in arm with a thrush,
Came sauntering up to the place;
The nightingale felt herself blush,
Though feathers hid her face;
She knew they had heard her song,
She felt them snicker and sneer;
She thought that life was too long,
And wished she could skip a year.

3. "O nightingale!" cooed a dove ;
"O nightingale! what 's the use?
You bird of beauty and love,
Why behave like a goose?
Don't sulk away from our sight,
Like a common, contemptible fowl;
You bird of joy and delight,
Why behave like an owl?

4. "Only think of all you have done;
Only think of all you can do;
A false note is really fun
From such a bird as you!
Lift up your proud little crest,
Open your musical beak;
Other birds have to do their best,
You need only to speak!"

5. The nightingale shyly took
Her head from under her wing,
And, giving the dove a look,
Straightway began to sing.
There was never a bird could pass;
The night was divinely calm;
And the people stood on the grass
To hear that wonderful psalm.

6. The nightingale did not care,
She only sang to the skies;
Her song ascended there,
And there she fixed her eyes.
The people that stood below
She knew but little about;
And this tale has a moral, I know,
If you'll try and find it out.

DEFINITIONS by verse number.
2. Saun'ter-ing, wandering idly, strolling. Snick'er, to laugh in a half-suppressed manner.
4. Crest, a tuft growing on an animal's head.
5. Di-vine'ly, in a supreme degree.
6. Mor'al, the practical lesson which anything is fitted to teach.

NOTE. The nightingale is a small bird, about six inches in length, with a coat of dark-brown feathers above and of grayish-white beneath. Its voice is astonishingly strong and sweet, and, when wild, it usually sings throughout the evening and night from April to the middle of summer. The bird is common in Europe, but is not found in America.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

3-7 Clipart Lesson VII: The Truant. - McGuffey's Third Eclectic Reader (revised edition)

Please click on the image to go to the download page.

The Truant:

1. James Brown was ten years old when his parents sent him to school. It was not far from his home, and therefore they sent him by himself.

2. But, instead of going to school, he was in the habit of playing truant. He would go into the fields, or spend his time with idle boys.

3. But this was not all. When he went home, he would falsely tell his mother that he had been to school, and had said his lessons very well.

4. One fine morning, his mother told James to make haste home from school, for she wished, after he had come back, to take him to his aunt's.

5. But, instead of minding her, he went off to the water, where there were some boats. There he met plenty of idle boys.

6. Some of these boys found that James had money, which his aunt had given him; and he was led by them to hire a boat, and to go with them upon the water.

7. Little did James think of the danger into which he was running. Soon the wind began to blow, and none of them knew how to manage the boat.

8. For some time, they struggled against the wind and the tide. At last, they became so tired that they could row no longer.

9. A large wave upset the boat, and they were all thrown into the water. Think of James Brown, the truant, at this time!

10. He was far from home, known by no one. His parents were ignorant of his danger. He was struggling in the water, on the point of being drowned.

11. Some men, however, saw the boys, and went out to them in a boat. They reached them just in time to save them from a watery grave.

12. They were taken into a house, where their clothes were dried. After a while, they were sent home to their parents.

13. James was very sorry for his conduct, and he was never known to be guilty of the same thing again.

14. He became regular at school, learned to attend to his books, and, above all, to obey his parents perfectly.

Saturday, April 29, 2017

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