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Your robes are green and

purple—there's a crest

upon your head; Your eyes are like the dia

mond bright, but mine

are dull as lead!” Alas, alas! how very soon this

silly little Fly, Hearing his wily, flattering

words, came slowly flitting by; With buzzing wings she hung aloft, then

near and nearer drew, Thinking only of her brilliant eyes, and green and purple hueThinking only of her crested head |-- poor foolish thing! At

last, Up jumped the cunning Spider, and fiercely held her fast. He dragged her up his winding stair, into his dismal den, Within his little parlor—but she ne'er came out again!

And now, dear little children, who may this story read, To idle, silly, flattering words, I pray you ne'er give

heed; Unto an evil counselor, close heart, and ear, and eye, And take a lesson from this tale of the Spider and the Fly.

Gau'zy (gôz'i), very thin; brilliant, sparkling; sub'lle (sūt''l), cunningly made; wi'ly, full of tricks; flăt'tèr ing, appealing to one's vanity; dis'mal, gloomy; coun'sel or (koun'se ler), one who gives advice.

STUDY HELPS

What did the spider tell about his house to attract the fly?
Read what the fly said in reply to each invitation.
Why did the fly's manner change after the fourth invitation?
Read the final invitation. What was there "flattering" about it?
Tell what the effect was upon the fly.

THE LITTLE PHILOSOPHER

JOHN AIKIN AND MRS. BARBAULD

Mr. L. was one morning riding by himself, when dismounting to gather a plant in the hedge, his horse got loose and galloped away before him. He followed, calling the horse by its name, which stopped, but on his approach set off again. At length a little boy in the neighboring field, seeing the affair, ran across where the road made a turn, and getting before the horse, took him by the bridle, and held him until his owner came up. Mr. L. looked at the child and admired his ruddy, cheerful countenance. “Thank you, my good lad!” said he; “you have caught my horse very cleverly. What shall I give you for your trouble?” (Putting his hand into his pocket). “I want nothing, sir," said the boy.

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"What 'shall I give you for your trouble?" MR. L. Don't you? So much the better for you. Few men can say so much. But, pray, what were you doing in the field?

Boy. I was rooting up weeds, and tending the sheep that are feeding on turnips.

MR. L. And do you like this kind of employment?
Boy. Yes, very well, this fine weather.
MR. L. But had you not rather play?

Boy. This is not hard work; it is almost as good as play.

MR. L. Who set you at work?
Boy. My father, sir.
MR. L. Where does he live?
Boy. Just by, among the trees there.
MR. L. What is his name?
Boy. Thomas Hurdle.
MR. L. And what is yours?
Boy. Peter, sir.
MR. L. How old are you?
Boy. I shall be eight at Michaelmas.
MR. L. How long have you been out in this field?
Boy. Ever since six in the morning.
MR. L. Are you not hungry?
Boy. Yes, I shall go to my dinner soon.

MR. L. If you had sixpence, what would you do with it?

Boy. I don't know. I never had so much in my life.
MR. L. Have you no playthings?
Boy. Playthings? What are those?

MR. L. Such as balls, ninepins, marbles, tops, and wooden horses.

Boy. No, sir; but our Tom makes footballs to kick in the cold weather, and we set traps for birds; and then I have a jumping pole and a pair of stilts to walk through the dirt with; and I had a hoop, but it broke.

MR. L. And do you want nothing else?

Boy. I have hardly time for those; for I always ride the horses to field, and bring up the cows, and run to the town of errands, and that is as good as play, you know.

MR. L. Well, but you could buy apples or gingerbread at the town, I suppose, if you had money?

Boy. Oh! I can get apples at home; and as for gingerbread, I don't mind it much, for my mother gives me a pie now and then, and that is as good.

MR. L. Would you not like a knife to cut sticks?

Boy. I have one-here it is-brother Tom gave it to me.

MR. L. Your shoes are full of holes --don't you want a better pair?

Boy. I have a better pair for Sundays.
MR. L. But these let in water.
Boy. Oh, I don't care for that.
MR. L. Your hat is all torn, too.

Boy. I have a better at home, but I had as lieve have none at all, for it hurts my head.

MR. L. What do you do when it rains?

Boy. If it rains very hard, I get under the hedge till it is over.

MR. L. What do you do when you are hungry before it is time to go home?

Boy. I sometimes eat a raw turnip.
MR. L. But if there are none?

Boy. Then I do as well as I can; I work on, and never think of it.

MR. L. Are you not dry sometimes this hot weather?
Boy. Yes, but there is water enough.

MR. L. Why, my little fellow, you are quite a philosopher!

Boy. Sir!

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