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Gobolinks or Shadow Pictures for Young and Old   By: (1856-1917)

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[Transcriber's Note: This book relies on the illustrations to be fully understood. Use the fully illustrated HTML version to get the full meaning from this lovely book.]


Gobolinks or Shadow Pictures For Young and Old

BY And Ruth McEnery Albert Bigelow Stuart Paine


New York The Century Co. 1896

Copyright, 1896, by The Century Co.




Dear Friends of our youth, should you happen to look At the curious things in this curious book, And should you, with quizzical countenance, ask The how and the why of our curious task We could truly reply To the query of "why " To the smile on your lip, and your questioning eye, That the work was begun In a spirit of fun, To amuse when the work of the daylight was done; And continued, because we believed it would be Amusement to such as were weary as we To drift for awhile among goblins and elves, Or haply make shadows and rhymes for themselves. For though years have passed since we drifted apart, We're all of us more or less children at heart. And maybe yourselves and the youngsters 't will please To dwell for an hour with such creatures as these.



Now, some one has said, in a moment of spleen, We cannot make pictures of what we've not seen; But such an assertion deserves only scorn, For the shape of the Gobolink never was born. He comes like the marvelous mimes of our dreams, When one has been supping on salads and creams, And curious changes of vision take place The horse may appear with an elephant face The goat with a cane, and the goose with a hat Six legs on the dog, and two tails on the cat; We never can tell, though we're sorely perplexed, What shape will be shown us, or what will come next; And these are the things that our Gobolinks do Dear friends, and dear children, we give them to you.




Drop a little ink on a sheet of white paper. Fold the sheet in the center and press the ink spots together with the fingers. All of the pictures in this book were made in this manner none of them having been touched with a pen or brush.

A great deal of practice will only go to show that the Gobolink, as his name implies, is a veritable goblin of the ink bottle, and the way he eludes the artist's design proves him a self made eccentric creature of a superior imagination.

It is hardly to be expected that the animals and birds of prey referred to under more or less familiar names in the accompanying rhymes will be strikingly correct as to anatomy; and because, as upon page 15, the elephants, or whatever they may be, happen to have each a row of interesting tails continuing along the full length of the spinal column, no unkind criticism should be made upon the ability of the overworked and conscientious artists, who would have made fewer tails if they could, and have added nothing to the price of the book on account of undue liberality in the matter of caudal appendages.


In fact the most unexpected and startling results will often occur results grotesquely and strangely beautiful, well worthy of preservation. The authors of this book will be glad to receive a few examples of some of the more unusual Gobolinks or Shadow Pictures that may occur to those interested in the amusement. They may be sent care of The Century Co.


Persons of all ages may obtain amusement out of Gobolinks, or Shadow Pictures, as they are also called.


The following is a very good method for playing the game:

Let three of the company be selected by the hostess as judges... Continue reading book >>

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