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be borne with. And, last of all, comes perseverance; for this quality is absolutely necessary in all cases wherein exertions are to be made and continued. In attempting to recover a drowned person, unless you have kind intentions, self-possession, knowledge, prudence, promptitude, patience, and perseverance, you have but a poor prospect of
Here Mr. Franklin came to a close, well knowing the advantage of breaking off before he had wearied his children. Taking up his crutches, he told them, that if they would think over what he had said, he would be ready on the next evening to help them on a little farther in their object of learning to act. "My children," said he with a smile, as he hobbled away,
"To learn to think, and learn to feel,
Becomes a youthful heart;
But you must also learn betimes
To act a worthy part."
ALL HAVE THE POWER TO PERFORM KIND ACTIONS.
THE following evening, the domestic party assembled, for if the young people had been anxious to begin their new project, they were now still more anxious to pursue it. It is an excellent thing when brothers and sisters, living together, engage in the same pursuit; for it not only calls forth a disposition to keep up with each other, but also binds them together. Were half a dozen young people of the same family to engage in half a dozen different objects, they would have no sympathy in common; but when all are aiming at the same end, they are drawn more closely together as companions. They are like fellow travellers in the same coach; fellow rowers in the same boat; or fellow passengers in the same ship.
Mr. Franklin well knew the value of cheerfulness and good humour, especially among young people; and his lively remarks to his children made them feel that they had in their kind-hearted father, a cheerful companion, as well as a wise counsellor and faithful friend. "Musical instruments," he used to say, quire tuning and toning, or they will not harmonize together; and the minds of young people require tuning and toning too."
"Mary, my love," said Mr. Franklin, "what should a farmer's wife do the first thing, when a friend drops in unexpectedly, and something is wanted for dinner, supposing she has but just killed a fowl.?"
"She should put the fowl into the pot, or on the spit directly," replied Mary.
"What!" cried Mr. Franklin, "put a fowl in the pot, or on the spit, before she had pulled off the feathers!"
Mary was finely laughed at by her brothers; but she soon had an opportunity of laughing in her turn.
"How does a farmer contrive to get a fine crop of corn, Edward?" said Mr. Franklin. "How does he set about it?"
"Oh," replied Edward, "he first of all sows his seed."
"Does he, indeed," said Mr. Franklin,
looking archly; "then I must be mistaken, for I always thought that he ploughed up the ground first!"
Here the laugh was against Edward, and Mary did not spare him. "You would make as bad a farmer," said she, as I should a farmer's wife; for it would be as great a mistake to sow a field without ploughing it, as to cook a fowl without pulling off its feathers." "Well, now," said Mr. Franklin, after the mirth of the young people had subsided, “let us attend to business. Never fall into the error of supposing that, to perform acts of kindness, it is necessary to be in any other situation than your own, or that you require any thing in addition to what you possess. Nothing is more common among us than to think of the wonderful things we should do, if we had the means which others enjoy of doing them, instead of making the best of the means we have. This is a sad mistake. If the weak wait till they are strong; the ignorant till they are wise; and the poor till they are rich, before they perform acts of kindness, they may never have the opportunity of performing them at all. Did I ever tell you of little Mary Wood?"
Mary. No, never! was she a kind little girl?
Mr. Franklin. She was; and you may learn from her that in every station of life, kindheartedness will find a way of doing kind
actions. Little Mary was so well known for her disposition to be kind to every body, that it became a common saying
'Thoughtful little Mary Wood,
Always did the best she could.'
One day, little Mary, who lived in a town, went out on an errand. Mary had just picked up a pin from the ground, when she saw a lady holding her shawl together, for it was blowing about in the wind, so she went up to her, and with a very low curtsy said, "If you please, ma'am, do you want a pin ?" "I do, indeed, my little girl," said the lady, "and am very much obliged to you." So pleased was the lady, that she asked Mary where she lived?
Mary. I thought she would ask her that.
Mr. F. Soon after this, Mary saw a blind man on the other side of the street, who was walking along by means of a stick; but he did not use it much as he seemed to know his road. Little Mary, however, saw just in time that a broad cellar window was open, belonging to a grocer's shop, and had not she run and stopped him, into that cellar the blind man must have fallen.
Peter. Little Mary was a very good little girl to save the blind man; why, he might have killed himself.
Mr. F. Besides these things, she removed some pieces of orange peel from the broad