ARTHUR AND HIS APPLE TREE.
One summer day little William was sitting in the garden chair beside
his mother, under the shade of a large cherry tree which stood on the
grass plot in front of the house. He was reading in a little book.
After he had been reading some time, he looked, up to his mother and
"Mother, will you tell me what is the meaning of 'you must return good
His mother replie
: "I will tell you a story that will explain it.
"I knew a little boy," she said, "whose name was Arthur Scott; he
lived with his grandmamma, who loved him very much, and who wished
that he might grow up to be a good man. Little Arthur had a garden of
his own, and in it grew an apple tree, which was then very small, but
to his great joy had upon it two fine rosy-cheeked apples, the first
ones it had produced. Arthur wished to taste of them very much to know
if they were sweet or sour; but he was not a selfish boy, and he says
to his grandmother one morning:
"I think I shall leave my apples on the tree till my birthday, then
papa and mamma and sister Fanny will come and see me, and we will eat
"'A very good thought," said his grandmother; "and you shall gather
"It seemed a long time for him to wait; but the birthday came at last,
and in the morning as soon as he was dressed he ran into his garden to
gather his apples; but lo! they were gone. A naughty boy who saw them
hanging on the tree, had climbed over the garden wall and stolen them.
"Arthur felt very sorry about losing his apples, and he began to cry,
but he soon wiped his eyes, and said to his grandmother:
"'It is hard to lose my nice apples, but it was much worse for that
naughty boy to commit so great a sin as to steal them. I am sure God
must be very angry with him; and I will go and kneel down and ask God
to forgive him.'
"So he went and prayed for the boy who had stolen his apples. Now,
William, do you not think that was returning good for evil?"
"O, yes," said William; "and I thank you, mother, for your pretty
story. I now understand what my new book means." Little Arthur grew to
be a man, and always bore a good name.