The Frost Fairies [From "Birdie and his Fairy Friends"] by



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Directions: Read the two stories (one by Margaret Canby and one by Helen Keller). Then look carefully at section 24 of the handbook. Determine to what extent Helen plagiarized the work of Canby.

The Frost Fairies [From "Birdie and his Fairy Friends"] by

Margaret T. Canby


King Frost, or Jack Frost as he is sometimes called, lives in a

cold country far to the North; but every year he takes a journey

over the world in a car of golden clouds drawn by a strong and

rapid steed called "North Wind." Wherever he goes he does many

wonderful things; he builds bridges over every stream, clear as

glass in appearance but often strong as iron; he puts the flowers

and plants to sleep by one touch of his hand, and they all bow

down and sink into the warm earth, until spring returns; then,

lest we should grieve for the flowers, he places at our windows

lovely wreaths and sprays of his white northern flowers, or

delicate little forests of fairy pine-trees, pure white and very

beautiful. But his most wonderful work is the painting of the

trees, which look, after his task is done, as if they were

covered with the brightest layers of gold and rubies; and are

beautiful enough to comfort us for the flight of summer.

I will tell you how King Frost first thought of this kind work,

for it is a strange story. You must know that this King, like all

other kings, has great treasures of gold and precious stones in

his palace; but, being a good-hearted old fellow, he does not

keep his riches locked up all the time, but tries to do good and

make others happy with them. He has two neighbours, who live

still farther north; one is King Winter, a cross and churlish old

monarch, who is hard and cruel, and delights in making the poor

suffer and weep; but the other neighbour is Santa Claus, a fine,

good-natured, jolly old soul, who loves to do good, and who

brings presents to the poor, and to nice little children at

Christmas.

Well, one day King Frost was trying to think of some good that he

could do with his treasure; and suddenly he concluded to send

some of it to his kind neighbour, Santa Claus, to buy presents of

food and clothing for the poor, that they might not suffer so

much when King Winter went near their homes. So he called

together his merry little fairies, and showing them a number of

jars and vases filled with gold and precious stones, told them to

carry those carefully to the palace of Santa Claus, and give them

to him with the compliments of King Frost. "He will know how to

make good use of the treasure," added Jack Frost; then he told

the fairies not to loiter by the way, but to do his bidding

quickly.
The fairies promised obedience and soon started on their journey,

dragging the great glass jars and vases along, as well as they

could, and now and then grumbling a little at having such hard

work to do, for they were idle fairies, and liked play better

than work. At last they reached a great forest, and, being quite

tired, they decided to rest awhile and look for nuts before going

any further. But lest the treasure should be stolen from them,

they hid the jars among the thick leaves of the forest trees,

placing some high up near the top, and others in different parts

of the various trees, until they thought no one could find them.

Then they began to wander about and hunt for nuts, and climb the

trees to shake them down, and worked much harder for their own

pleasure than they had done for their master's bidding, for it is

a strange truth that fairies and children never complain of the

toil and trouble they take in search of amusement, although they

often grumble when asked to work for the good of others.

The frost fairies were so busy and so merry over their nutting

frolic that they soon forgot their errand and their king's

command to go quickly; but, as they played and loitered in the

forest until noon, they found the reason why they were told to

hasten; for although they had, as they thought, hidden the

treasure so carefully, they had not secured it from the power of

Mr. Sun, who was an enemy of Jack Frost, and delighted to undo

his work and weaken him whenever he could.


His bright eyes found out the jars of treasure among the trees,

and as the idle fairies left them there until noon, at which time

Mr. Sun is the strongest, the delicate glass began to melt and

break, and before long every jar and vase was cracked or broken,

and the precious treasures they contained were melting, too, and

dripping slowly in streams of gold and crimson over the trees and

bushes of the forest.

Still, for awhile, the frost fairies did not notice this strange

occurrence, for they were down on the grass, so far below the

tree-tops that the wonderful shower of treasure was a long time

in reaching them; but at last one of them said, "Hark! I believe

it is raining; I certainly hear the falling drops." The others

laughed, and told him that it seldom rained when the sun was

shining; but as they listened they plainly heard the tinkling of

many drops falling through the forest, and sliding from leaf to

leaf until they reached the bramble-bushes beside them, when, to

their great dismay, they found that the RAIN-DROPS were MELTED

RUBIES, which hardened on the leaves and turned them to bright

crimson in a moment. Then looking more closely at the trees

around, they saw that the treasure was all melting away, and that

much of it was already spread over the leaves of the oak trees

and maples, which were shining with their gorgeous dress of gold

and bronze, crimson and emerald. It was very beautiful; but the

idle fairies were too much frightened at the mischief their

disobedience had caused, to admire the beauty of the forest, and

at once tried to hide themselves among the bushes, lest King

Frost should come and punish them.

Their fears were well founded, for their long absence had alarmed

the king, and he had started out to look for his tardy servants,

and just as they were all hidden, he came along slowly, looking

on all sides for the fairies. Of course, he soon noticed the

brightness of the leaves, and discovered the cause, too, when he

caught sight of the broken jars and vases from which the melted

treasure was still dropping. And when he came to the nut trees,

and saw the shells left by the idle fairies and all the traces of

their frolic, he knew exactly how they had acted, and that they

had disobeyed him by playing and loitering on their way through

the woods.
King Frost frowned and looked very angry at first, and his

fairies trembled for fear and cowered still lower in their

hiding-places; but just then two little children came dancing

through the wood, and though they did not see King Frost or the

fairies, they saw the beautiful colour of the leaves, and laughed

with delight, and began picking great bunches to take to their

mother. "The leaves are as pretty as flowers," said they; and

they called the golden leaves "buttercups," and the red ones

"roses," and were very happy as they went singing through the

wood.

Their pleasure charmed away King Frost's anger, and he, too,

began to admire the painted trees, and at last he said to

himself, "My treasures are not wasted if they make little

children happy. I will not be offended at my idle, thoughtless

fairies, for they have taught me a new way of doing good." When

the frost fairies heard these words they crept, one by one, from

their corners, and, kneeling down before their master, confessed

their fault, and asked his pardon. He frowned upon them for

awhile, and scolded them, too, but he soon relented, and said he

would forgive them this time, and would only punish them by

making them carry more treasure to the forest, and hide it in the

trees, until all the leaves, with Mr. Sun's help, were covered

with gold and ruby coats.

Then the fairies thanked him for his forgiveness, and promised to

work very hard to please him; and the good-natured king took them

all up in his arms, and carried them safely home to his palace.

From that time, I suppose, it has been part of Jack Frost's work

to paint the trees with the glowing colours we see in the autumn;

and if they are NOT covered with gold and precious stones, I do

not know how he makes them so bright; DO YOU?

The Frost King by Helen A. Keller


King Frost lives in a beautiful palace far to the North, in the

land of perpetual snow. The palace, which is magnificent beyond

description, was built centuries ago, in the reign of King

Glacier. At a little distance from the palace we might easily

mistake it for a mountain whose peaks were mounting heavenward to

receive the last kiss of the departing day. But on nearer

approach we should discover our error. What we had supposed to be

peaks were in reality a thousand glittering spires. Nothing could

be more beautiful than the architecture of this ice-palace. The

walls are curiously constructed of massive blocks of ice which

terminate in cliff-like towers. The entrance to the palace is at

the end of an arched recess, and it is guarded night and day by

twelve soldierly-looking white Bears.
But, children, you must make King Frost a visit the very first

opportunity you have, and see for yourselves this wonderful

palace. The old King will welcome you kindly, for he loves

children, and it is his chief delight to give them pleasure.

You must know that King Frost, like all other kings, has great

treasures of gold and precious stones; but as he is a generous

old monarch, he endeavours to make a right use of his riches. So

wherever he goes he does many wonderful works; he builds bridges

over every stream, as transparent as glass, but often as strong

as iron; he shakes the forest trees until the ripe nuts fall into

the laps of laughing children; he puts the flowers to sleep with

one touch of his hand; then, lest we should mourn for the bright

faces of the flowers, he paints the leaves with gold and crimson

and emerald, and when his task is done the trees are beautiful

enough to comfort us for the flight of summer. I will tell you

how King Frost happened to think of painting the leaves, for it

is a strange story.
One day while King Frost was surveying his vast wealth and

thinking what good he could do with it, he suddenly bethought him

of his jolly old neighbour, Santa Claus. "I will send my

treasures to Santa Claus," said the King to himself. "He is the

very man to dispose of them satisfactorily, for he knows where

the poor and the unhappy live, and his kind old heart is always

full of benevolent plans for their relief." So he called together

the merry little fairies of his household and, showing them the

jars and vases containing his treasures, he bade them carry them

to the palace of Santa Claus as quickly as they could. The

fairies promised obedience, and were off in a twinkling, dragging

the heavy jars and vases along after them as well as they could,

now and then grumbling a little at having such a hard task, for

they were idle fairies and loved to play better than to work.

After awhile they came to a great forest and, being tired and

hungry, they thought they would rest a little and look for nuts

before continuing their journey. But thinking their treasure

might be stolen from them, they hid the jars among the thick

green leaves of the various trees until they were sure that no

one could find them. Then they began to wander merrily about

searching for nuts, climbing trees, peeping curiously into the

empty birds' nests, and playing hide and seek from behind the

trees. Now, these naughty fairies were so busy and so merry over

their frolic that they forgot all about their errand and their

master's command to go quickly, but soon they found to their

dismay why they had been bidden to hasten, for although they had,

as they supposed, hidden the treasure carefully, yet the bright

eyes of King Sun had spied out the jars among the leaves, and as

he and King Frost could never agree as to what was the best way

of benefiting the world, he was very glad of a good opportunity

of playing a joke upon his rather sharp rival. King Sun laughed

softly to himself when the delicate jars began to melt and break.

At length every jar and vase was cracked or broken, and the

precious stones they contained were melting, too, and running in

little streams over the trees and bushes of the forest.
Still the idle fairies did not notice what was happening, for

they were down on the grass, and the wonderful shower of treasure

was a long time in reaching them; but at last they plainly heard

the tinkling of many drops falling like rain through the forest,

and sliding from leaf to leaf until they reached the little

bushes by their side, when to their astonishment they discovered

that the rain-drops were melted rubies which hardened on the

leaves, and turned them to crimson and gold in a moment. Then

looking around more closely, they saw that much of the treasure

was already melted, for the oaks and maples were arrayed in

gorgeous dresses of gold and crimson and emerald. It was very

beautiful, but the disobedient fairies were too frightened to

notice the beauty of the trees. They were afraid that King Frost

would come and punish them. So they hid themselves among the

bushes and waited silently for something to happen. Their fears

were well founded, for their long absence had alarmed the King,

and he mounted North Wind and went out in search of his tardy

couriers. Of course, he had not gone far when he noticed the

brightness of the leaves, and he quickly guessed the cause when

he saw the broken jars from which the treasure was still

dropping. At first King Frost was very angry, and the fairies

trembled and crouched lower in their hiding-places, and I do not

know what might have happened to them if just then a party of

boys and girls had not entered the wood. When the children saw

the trees all aglow with brilliant colors they clapped their

hands and shouted for joy, and immediately began to pick great

bunches to take home. "The leaves are as lovely as the flowers!"

cried they, in their delight. Their pleasure banished the anger

from King Frost's heart and the frown from his brow, and he, too,

began to admire the painted trees. He said to himself, "My

treasures are not wasted if they make little children happy. My

idle fairies and my fiery enemy have taught me a new way of doing

good."

When the fairies heard this, they were greatly relieved and came

forth from their hiding-places, confessed their fault, and asked

their master's forgiveness.
Ever since that time it has been King Frost's great delight to

paint the leaves with the glowing colors we see in the autumn,



and if they are not covered with gold and precious stones I

cannot imagine what makes them so bright, can you?



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