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he had been very insolent to her; when the king sent for Tom in a great rage. To escape his fury, Tom hid himself in an empty snail-shell, where he lay till he was nearly starved. At last, peeping out, he saw a fine butterfly settle on the ground. He now ventured forth, and got astride the butterfly, which took wing and mounted into the air with little Tom on his back. Away they went from field to field, and from flower to flower, till the butterfly, attracted by the light streaming from the king's dining-room, flew in at the open window. The king, queen, and nobles all strove to catch the butterfly, but could not. At length poor Tom, having neither saddle nor bridle, slipped from his seat into a sweet dish called whitepot, and was nearly drowned. The queen was bent on having him punished, and he was once more put in a mouse-trap. Here the cat, seeing something stir, and thinking a mouse was there, so rolled about the trap with her claws, that she broke it, and the prisoner escaped.
Soon afterwards a large spider, taking poor Tom for a big fly, made a spring at him. Tom drew his sword, and fought with courage, but the poisonous breath of the spider overcame him. He fell dead on the ground where late he had stood, And the spider sucked up the last drop of his blood. King Thunstone and all his court wept for the loss of the little favorite. They wore mourning for him for three years. He was buried under a rosebush, and a marble head-stone was raised over his grave, bearing these words:
Here lies Tom Thumb, King Arthur's knight,
Who died by spider's cruel bite;
Where he afforded gallant sport.
And on a mouse a-hunting went; Alive, he filled the court with mirth,
His death to sorrow soon gave birth ; Wipe, wipe your eyes, and shake your head,
And cry, “Alas! Tom Thumb is dead !”
A SONG WITH A MORAL.
Little General Monk
Eating a crust of bread;
Now little General Monk is dead.
Keep always from the fire ;
You, too, like Monk, will be dead.
A great while ago the world begun,
With hey, ho, the wind and the rain, But that's all one, our play is done,
And we'll strive to please you every day.
THE GOLDEN RULE IN VERSE.
Be you to others kind and true
The text of the melodies is chosen from Mother Goose collections in Harvard College Library.
Regarding the history and title of these rhymes Mr. W. H. Whitmore, in editing The Original Mother Goose's Melody, says: According to my present knowledge, I feel sure that the original name is merely a translation from the French; that the collection was first made for and by John Newbery of London, about A.D. 1760 ; and that the great popularity of the book is due to the Boston editions of Munroe and Francis, A.D. 18241860. ... There is an interesting question as to who prepared the collection for the press.” It may have been Goldsmith, who was employed as a hack writer by the Newberys from 1762 to 1767. “ The probability, or even possibility, of this idea would give an added interest to the collection."
Irving in his Life of Goldsmith refers to the poet's love of glees, catches, and simple melodies. · Dining one day, in company with Dr. Johnson, at the chaplain's table at St. James's Palace, he entertained the company with a particular and comic account of his feelings on the night of representation [of The Good-Natured Man), and his despair when the piece was hissed. How he went home, he said, to the Literary Club; chatted gayly, as if nothing had gone amiss; and, to give a greater idea of his unconcern, sang his favorite song about “An Old Woman tossed in a blanket seventeen times as high as the moon.' ... He was at all times a capital companion for children, and knew how to fall in with their humors. 'I little thought,' said Miss Hawkins, the woman grown, what I should have to boast when Goldsmith taught me to play “Jack and Jill,'' by two bits of paper on his fingers.' He entertained Mrs. Garrick, we are told, with a whole budget of stories and songs.”
PAGE 6. “I like Little Pussy.” Jane Taylor was one of a family who wrote many books for children. Some of the verses which she published jointly with her sister Ann are still popular. She was born in London in 1783, and died in 1824.