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mountain. It marks the place where once stood a little cottage so shut in by the lofty peaks which towered round it, that its inhabitants could scarcely catch a glimpse of the blue sky. It was the dwelling-place of a young couple and their only child, a little boy of four years old ; and poor and lonely though it was, yet it was the abode of peace and love, and no king was happier than Franz when on his return from hunting, or else from a day's work at one of the farms in the sheltered valley at the foot of the mountain, he met his Gutchen and the little Wilhelm hastening along the mountain path to meet and welcome him, as soon as they heard the distant sound of his voice singing some lively hunting song.
2. One beautiful morning Franz said to his wife,' I must go up the mountain to-day. The sun is shining bright and warm, and there is a good chance of finding game; besides, who knows how soon the weather may change again?'
3. So, putting on his hunting coat and pouch, and taking his gun in his hand, he bade good-bye in a cheerful voice to his wife and child, and disappeared up the mountain side. His wife had no sooner lost sight of him than she felt a strange sinking of the heart, as if she were never to see him again. She gazed out of the window, on which there were many beautiful forms traced by the frost, and tried in vain to overcome the fears which had taken possession of her mind, and then she sat down again by the fireside with her little
Wilhelm pressed closely in her arms.
She was soon roused by a rushing, crashing noise, and falling on her knees she exclaimed, God be merciful to us, or we shall be destroyed by the avalanche!' Scarcely had she uttered the words when it became as dark as midnight. The cottage was buried in the snow.
4. The evening was calm, and the stars shone brightly in the clear sky, when Franz descended along the homeward path with a chamois lying across his shoulder. He had seen but little game, and had climbed many giddy heights before he got near enough to take successful aim at the timid animals. He hastened eagerly along, expecting every minute to see his wife and child, as he knew he was near the spot where the cottage stood.
5. At length he stopped, and gazing on the masses of snow and ice which surrounded him, cried, in a despairing voice, “My wife! my child ! They are lost, buried in the cruel avalanche. May God help them and me!'
6. With the first ray of light Franz and a party of sympathising friends from the nearest cottage assembled, with spades and shovels, on the spot where he thought his home had been buried, and commenced to clear away the snow in hopes to extricate Gutchen and her little one. For three days they worked incessantly without any success. All then lost courage except Franz, who never despaired, but continued to dig night and day,
Avalanche, a inass of snow falling down the mountain-side.
without speaking to his companions, but praying inwardly to God, who gave him strength to persevere in spite of his grief and anxiety.
7. In the mean time Gutchen believed herself shut up for ever in her dark prison. Their stock of provisions could not last long, and then she saw no prospect but death for herself and her little Wilhelm, who often asked her when it would be morning as, by the light of the lamp, she read in her Bible of Christ's miracles, and found comfort in praying that He would save them if it were possible, and, if not, that He would soon take them to His kingdom in heaven.
8. On the ninth day she suddenly heard the sound of voices above, and at the same moment Franz felt his spade touch a hard object, which he soon found to be the roof of his cottage. He quickly fastened a long cord round his waist, removed a portion of the roof, and descended into the little room, where he found his wife and his child safe and well.
9. And who can describe the joy of that meeting between those who had feared they were for ever parted in this world ? By the light of the now expiring lamp they knelt and offered up their thanks and praise to God, who had so wonderfully preserved them.
10. When Gutchen once more beheld the light of the sun and the glittering mountain tops, it seemed to her as if she had never before felt their beauty and their splendour. The very fir trees
appeared to have decked themselves with fresher green, and her heart was full of joy as she was greeted by the kind-hearted men who had so nobly assisted in saving her.
II. Franz erected the cairn' to mark the place where his former home had stood ; and many a mother points it out to her son, and tells him the story of Franz and Gutchen, and prays that he may emulate ? that man's courage and devotion.
WILLIAM THE CONQUEROR. 1. GREAT King William spread before him
All his stores of wealth untold,
Heaps on heaps of minted gold.
Cairn, heap of stones.
Sighing to himself, “O treasure !
Held in care, by sorrow won;
But alas! before me piled,
For the slumbers of a child.'
Heard the martial trumpets blow,
Of a countless host below;
As the squadrons trod the sward;
Hear thy miserable lord:
At my nod thy captains bend-
I would give thee for a friend.'
Looking from its castled height
Glittering in the morning light;
And the forest waving free,
Fondled by the circling sea,
And be happy, could I gain,