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No and Other Stories Compiled by Uncle Humphrey   By:

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Preface No Willy and the Beggar Girl The Good Son The Sick Mother Cornelia's Prayer Forgiveness The Guilty Conscience Acorn Hollow Industry and Idleness Envy Conclusion


This little book has been prepared for the instruction and amusement of my dear young friends, and it is hoped that they will be profited by its perusal. It will show them their duty, and lead them to perform it.

The little word No is of great importance, although composed of but two letters. It will be of great service in keeping us from the path of sin and misery, and of inducing us to walk in "wisdom's ways, whose ways are ways of pleasantness, and all whose paths are peace."

Exercise charity to the destitute, as did little Willy.

Be good sons and daughters, and you will be a comfort to your parents, in sickness or in health. "Forgiveness is an attribute of Heaven."

A guilty conscience gives us no peace.

Which of you have a place of resort that is like Aunt Lissa's Acorn Hollow?

Be industrious, and learn to make yourselves useful, if you would be respected and beloved.

Beware of envy, for it begetteth hatred.

In short, I hope the reader who is now looking at this preface will carefully read every word in the following pages; and not only read , but remember , the lessons there taught, and thereby become wiser and better.

And when you have read this book so much and so carefully as to be able to tell me what it is all about, when I come to your houses, another little volume will be prepared for the young friends of


LYNN, January, 1851.



"There is a word, my son, a very little word, in the English language, the right use of which it is all important that you should learn," Mr. Howland said to his son Thomas, who was about leaving the paternal roof for a residence in a neighboring city, never again, perchance, to make one of the little circle that had so long gathered in the family homestead.

"And what word is that, father?" Thomas asked.

"It is the little word No , my son."

"And why does so much importance attach to that word, father?"

"Perhaps I can make you understand the reason much better if I relate an incident that occurred when I was a boy. I remember it as distinctly as if it had taken place but yesterday, although thirty years have since passed. There was a neighbor of my father's, who was very fond of gunning and fishing. On several occasions I had accompanied him, and had enjoyed myself very much. One day my father said to me,

"'William, I do not wish you to go into the woods or on the water again with Mr. Jones.'

"'Why not, father?' I asked, for I had become so fond of going with him, that to be denied the pleasure was a real privation.

"'I have good reasons for not wishing you to go, William,' my father replied, 'but do not want to give them now. I hope it is all sufficient for you, that your father desires you not to accompany Mr. Jones again.'

"I could not understand why my father laid upon me this prohibition; and, as I desired very much to go, I did not feel satisfied in my obedience. On the next day, as I was walking along the road, I met Mr. Jones with his fishing rod on his shoulder, and his basket in his hand.

"'Ah, William! you are the very one that I wish to see,' said Mr. Jones smiling. 'I am going out this morning, and want company. We shall have a beautiful day.'

"'But my father told me yesterday,' I replied, 'that he did not wish me to go out with you.'

"'And why not, pray?' asked Mr. Jones.

"'I am sure that I do not know,' I said, 'but indeed, I should like to go very much.'

"'O, never mind; come along,' he said, 'Your father will never know it.'

"'Yes, but I am afraid that he will,' I replied, thinking more of my father's displeasure than of the evil of disobedience.

"'There is no danger at all of that. We will be home again long before dinner time... Continue reading book >>

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