Famous StoriesSir Humphrey Gilbert
More than three hundred years ago there lived in England a ...
A Story Of Robin Hood
In the rude days of King Rich-ard and King John there were ...
It was a dark Sep-tem-ber morning. There was a storm at sea...
Bruce And The Spider
There was once a king of Scot-land whose name was Robert Br...
The Brave Three Hundred
All Greece was in danger. A mighty army, led by the great K...
Three Men Of Gotham
There is a town in England called Go-tham, and many merry s...
Many years ago there was a poor gentleman shut up in one of...
A good many years ago there lived in Italy a little boy who...
The Story Of William Tell
The people of Swit-zer-land were not always free and happy ...
There was a great battle at sea. One could hear nothing but...
The Endless Tale
In the Far East there was a great king who had no work to d...
Here is the story of Mignon as I remember having read it in...
Androclus And The Lion
In Rome there was once a poor slave whose name was An'dro-c...
Horatius At The Bridge
Once there was a war between the Roman people and the E-tru...
The Black Douglas
In Scotland, in the time of King Robert Bruce, there lived ...
It was a bright morning in the old city of Rome many hundre...
The Inchcape Rock
In the North Sea there is a great rock called the Inch-cape...
Maximilian And The Goose Boy
One summer day King Max-i-mil'ian of Ba-va'ri-a was walking...
Alexander And Bucephalus
One day King Philip bought a fine horse called Bu-ceph'a-lu...
King John And The Abbot
The 3 Questions. There was once a king of England whose...
A LACONIC ANSWER
Many miles beyond Rome there was a famous country which we call
Greece. The people of Greece were not u-nit-ed like the Romans; but
instead there were sev-er-al states, each of which had its own rulers.
Some of the people in the southern part of the country were called
Spar-tans, and they were noted for their simple habits and their
brav-er-y. The name of their land was La-co'ni-a, and so they were
sometimes called La-cons.
One of the strange rules which the Spartans had, was that they should
speak briefly, and never use more words than were needed. And so a
short answer is often spoken of as being _la-con-ic_; that is, as
being such an answer as a Lacon would be likely to give.
There was in the northern part of Greece a land called Mac'e-don; and
this land was at one time ruled over by a war-like king named Philip.
Philip of Mac-e-don wanted to become the master of all Greece. So he
raised a great army, and made war upon the other states, until nearly
all of them were forced to call him their king. Then he sent a letter
to the Spartans in La-co-ni-a, and said, "If I go down into your
country, I will level your great city to the ground."
In a few days, an answer was brought back to him. When he opened the
letter, he found only one word written there.
That word was "IF."
It was as much as to say, "We are not afraid of you so long as the
little word 'if' stands in your way."
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