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Proud and Lazy A Story for Little Folks   By: (1822-1897)

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The Riverdale Stories









Tommy Woggs was a funny little boy. He was very proud and very lazy. He seemed to think he was a great man, and that other people lived only to serve and obey him.

None of the boys and girls liked him, because he used to order them round, and because he thought himself so much better than they were.

Tommy's father was a doctor, and a rich man. He could afford to have servants to wait upon his son, but he was not quite rich enough to spoil the child by letting him do as he pleased.

There are some things that wealth cannot purchase. It will not buy wisdom, for all the money in the world would not teach a person even to perform a simple question in arithmetic.

It will not buy the love and respect of others. Many rich men are hated and despised by nearly all who know them.

So Tommy's father could not buy an education for his son, nor would wealth win for him the esteem of his companions. He must study like the children of poor people if he wanted to be wise; and he must treat them well, in order to obtain their good will.

Tommy did not like to study, and he did like to command others. He wished every body to think that he was better than they, because he had been to New York, and because his father was rich.

Children are just like men and women. They always find out the really good boys and girls, and love and respect them. And they never think much of those who think too much of themselves.

When Tommy was eight years old, his father sent him to the village school. It was a public school, and it was the best in the town. He had learned his letters at home, and was able to read a very little.

At first he was pleased with the idea of going to school, and did not even tell his mother he would not go. He was very apt to say he would not do anything, when he was told to do it.

I am sorry to add that his parents were very much to blame, for he was an only child, and they did not like to cross him. They did not make him "mind," as all good parents ought to do, and as all good children are willing to do. He used to have his own way; and when he went to school, he hardly knew what it was to obey.

Miss Dale, the teacher, gave him a good seat, when he first went to school, and spoke very kindly to him. For two or three days he got along quite well. It was a new thing to him, and he was pleased with the school and the teacher.

But in a little while he was tired of the place, and of the teacher, and he had yet to learn that he could not always have his own way.

On the fourth day of his school life, when Miss Dale called him up to read, he made up his mind that he would not read.

"I don't want to read," said he.

"Perhaps you don't, Thomas. Do you know what your father sends you to school for?" replied Miss Dale.

"No, I don't."

"You must not speak so to me. Come here."

"I won't."

"Don't be naughty, Thomas. I asked you to come to me."

"I won't."

"If you won't come, I shall bring you."

Tommy didn't exactly know what to make of this; but the teacher did not give him much time to think about it, for she took him by the collar of his coat, and, in spite of his kicking and screaming, dragged him up to the desk.

"Now, stand there, Thomas; and if you are a good boy, and obey me, I will not hurt you at all."

"I won't be a good boy," growled Tommy; and when Miss Dale let go of him, he threw himself on the floor and began to kick and scream as though he had been mad.

The teacher opened her desk, and took out a little stick. Tommy did not like the looks of the stick, but he kept on kicking and screaming... Continue reading book >>

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