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This series of readers has for its chief purpose the creating and fostering of a taste for good reading, therefore this volume opens with selections from “ Mother Goose Melodies," as the first thing in poetry that appeals to children is the rhythm. Many other delightful poems are given as well as some of the most noted of the “ Nursery Classics.” There is also a short list of common proverbs and popular sayings that can be used to advantage.

The selections in this volume may profitably be read to the children again and again before they are able to read for themselves. Reading to the children is a very important factor in the work of developing a taste for good literature. When children come to read for themselves they prefer stories that have been read to them or told them, rather than matter that is wholly new. It is like meeting an old acquaintance.

The “ Nursery Classics” are in most instances so old that no one is sure of their origin. It is probable that most of them are nature myths. It has been suggested that in the story of " Jack and the Beanstalk,” the red hen represented the sun, the money bags the rain, and the harp the winds.

The selection from Josephine Peabody is published by permission of, and by arrangement with, Houghton Mifflin Company, the authorized publishers of her works.

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When the pie was opened,

The birds began to sing;
Was not that a dainty dish

To set before the king ?

The king was in his counting-house,

Counting out his money;
The queen was in her parlor,

Eating bread and honey;
The maid was in the garden,

Hanging out the clothes;
There came a little blackbird

And snipped off her nose.

Thirty white horses on a red hill,
Now they tramp, now they champ, now they stand still.

One, two,
Buckle my shoe;
Three, four,
Shut the door;
Five, six,
Pick up sticks;
Seven, eight,
Lay them straight;

Nine, ten,
A good fat hen;
Eleven, twelve,
Who will delve ?
Thirteen, fourteen,
Maids a-courting;
Fifteen, sixteen,
Maids a-kissing;

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