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THE SEVEN CHAMPIONS OF CHRISTENDOM.
THE ancient chronicles of kings,
St. George he was for England,
St. James for Spain, his valiant hand
St. Anthony for Italy,
Andrew for Scots ne'er fails,
St. David was for Wales.
ST. GEORGE AND THE DRAGON.
MANY and wonderful adventures had the brave St. George as he went on his travels, always mounted on his noble steed Bayard, and bearing his trusty sword in his hand. Once he found a king full of trouble because a fearful dragon was ravaging his country. So greedy was this terrific monster, that nothing would satisfy him but the body of a young maiden brought daily to his den, When he had devoured it he would remain quiet all day, but unless it was brought he would ravage the land on all sides.
Many brave men had fought with him, but he had killed them all, and so many young maidens had been devoured by him that now only the princess was left, and the next morning she must die.
When Prince George heard this he resolved to do battle with the dragon; and, accordingly, the next morning he arose and went in search of his fierce enemy. As he went he saw the princess led out to meet her sad fate, but he approached her, and bade her return to her father's court, for he would deliver her from the dragon. Then he rode on to the valley where the dragon lived, and had a fierce battle with him. His spear broke short in the fight, and once he and the noble Bayard, his horse, were both overthrown; but they rose up again, and St. George drew his faithful sword that never failed him, and at length pierced the dragon to the heart. He then returned to the city, where the king, as a reward, gave him the princess to be his wife. She went with him to England, where she bore him three
It would fill a large book to tell of all that St. George did in his lifetime; how often he drew his sword to defend the oppressed; how many poor prisoners he released; how many cruel giants and fierce bears he killed. I can only tell you that he never drew his sword in a bad cause, and that his faithful horse was always his companion. And now you must hear the manner of his death. He had been absent from England many years and was returning home with much joy, when he was told a doleful report, how there ranged up and down an infectious dragon, that so annoyed the country that the inhabitants thereof could not pass by without great danger." Fifteen knights had lost their lives in doing combat with this dragon.
St. George no sooner heard thereof than he resolved
either to free the land from so great a danger, or to finish his days in the attempt. So taking leave of all present he rode forth with a noble and undaunted courage.
Coming to the middle of the plain, he there saw his dreadful enemy crouching on the ground in a deep cave. The monster, knowing that his death drew nigh, made a fearful yelling that seemed to shake the earth. Then, bounding from his den, he ran with such fury against the knight, as if he meant to devour him, and his armour, and his steed, in a moment. But the brave St. George, knowing well how to deal with such monsters, quickly wheeled his horse round out of his way. Then the dragon turned, and flapping his huge wings, flew again upon the knight and tried to overthrow him and his horse; but St. George thrust his spear into his throat. At length, after a long combat, the good knight conquered this last time also, and the dragon lay dead upon the plain. But, alas! the sting in his tail had more than once pierced through the openings in St. George's armour, so that he was bleeding from many wounds. Still he contrived to ride back to his native city of Coventry, where all the people came out to meet him as if he had been a king. But no sooner had he ridden into the city than he fell back fainting from his horse, and died without a sigh. The king and the people all mourned for him, and the day on which he was buried was named St. George's Day. He was also raised to be the patron saint of England-because he had lived a good and useful life, and had fought bravely in many a just cause.
And ever since this time, when Englishmen go forth to fight battles, they shout, "for England and St. George!" or "St. George and Merrie England!" and many a fight have they won to that old and honoured cry. You may
find St. George, too, on the back of some of our old coins,
trampling the dragon under his feet. And whenever men put down a wrong thing in the land, when they overcome evil with good, whether in their own hearts, or in the country where they dwell, or out in the wide world, then they show themselves true followers of St. George, and true sons of merrie England.
St. George and his companions showed great courage in delivering the oppressed; and an infectious dragon ravaging the country and annoying the inhabitants was slain by the Champion of England. Whenever men put down a wrong thing, and overcome evil with good, they are worthy followers of St. George.
THE STATUE OF JUSTICE.
ONCE in an ancient city, whose name I no longer remember,
And in its right a sword, as an emblem that justice presided
Even the birds had built their nests in the scales of the
Having no fear of the sword that flashed in the sunshine above them.
But in the course of time the laws of the land were cor
Might took the place of right, and the weak were oppressed, and the mighty.
Ruled with an iron rod. Then it chanced in a nobleman's
That a necklace of pearls was lost, and ere long a suspicion Fell on an orphan girl who lived as maid in the household. She, after form of trial, condemned to die on a scaffold, Patiently met her doom at the foot of the statue of justice. Lo! o'er the city a tempest rose; and the bolts of the thunder
Smote the statue of bronze, and hurled in wrath from its left hand,
Down on the pavement below, the clattering scales of the balance,
And in the hollow thereof was found the nest of a magpie, Into whose clay-built walls the necklace of pearls was inwoven.
THE BUSTLING WAY AND THE QUIET WAY.
THERE are some children who do very little good, even when they wish to be of assistance to others, because they make so much bustle about everything they undertake.
Jane Riddell is one of these bustling characters. She is always ready and willing to help her mother, whom she loves very much, and to whom she is always obedient, but she makes so much noise and talk about any little thing she has to do, that one would rather do it ten times over than be present while she is doing it. "Mother," said Jane, one morning when she sat reading, "Mother, mother!" calling several times before her mother had time to look