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This was repeated till I went about pecking in full security, and expected to regain my original form, when I observed two of my most liberal benefactors filently advancing with a net behind me. I few off, and fluttering beside them, pricked the leg of each, and left them halting and groaning with the cramp.

I then went to another house, where for two fprings and summers I entertained a splendid family with such melody as they had never heard in the woods before. The winter that followed the second summer was remarkably cold, and many little birds perished in the field. I laid myself in the way of one of the ladies as benumbed with cold and faint with hunger ; she picked me up with great joy, telling her companions that she had found the goldfinch that sung so finely all summer in the myrtle hedge, that she would lay him where he should die, for she could not bear to kill him, and would then pick his fine feathers very carefully, and stick them in her muff.

Finding that her fondness and her gratitude could give way to so Night an interest, I chilled her fingers that she could not hold me, then flew at her face, and with my beak gave her nose four pecks that left four black spots indelible behind them, and broke a match by which she would have obtained the finest equipage

. At length the Queen repented of her sentence, and being unable to revoke it, affifted me to try experiments upon man, to excite his tenderness, and attract his regard.


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We made many attempts, in which we were always disappointed. At last she placed me in your way, held by a lime-twig, and herself in the shape of a hawk made the shew of devouring me. You, my dear, have rescued me from the seeming danger, without desiring to detain me in captivity, or seeking any other recompence than the pleasure of benefiting a feeling creature.

The Queen is so much pleased with your kindness, that I am come, by her permission, to reward you with a greater favour than ever Fairy bestowed before.

The former gifts of Fairies, though bounties in design, have proved commonly mischiefs in the event. We have granted mortals to wish according to their own difcretion; and their discretion being small, and their wishes irreversible, they have rafhly petitioned for their own destruction. But you, my dearest Floretta, shall have, what none have ever before obtained from us, the

power of indulging your wish, and the liberty of retracting it, Be bold and follow me,

Floretta was easily persuaded to accompany the Fairy, who led her through a labyrinth of craggs and shrubs, to a cavern covered by a thicker on the side of the mountain.

This cavern, said she, is the court of Lilinet your friend; in this place you shall find a certain remedy for all real evils. Lilinet then went before her through a löng subterraneous passage, where she saw many beautiful Fairies, who came to gaze at the stranger, but who, from reverence to their mistress, gave her no disturbance. She heard from remote corners of the gloomy cavern the roar of winds and the fall of waters, and more than


once entreated to return ; but Lilinet assuring her that The was safe, persuaded her to proceed till they came to an arch, into which the light found its way through a fiffure of the rock.

There Lilinet seated herself and her guest upon a bench 2.) of

agate, and pointing to two fountains that bubbled before them, said, now attend, my dear Floretta, and enjoy the gratitude of a fairy. Observe the two fountains that spring up in the middle of the vault, one into a bason of alabaster, and the other into a bason of dark fint. The one is called the spring of joy, the other of sorrow; they rise from distant veins in the rock, and burst out in two places, but after a short course unite their streams, and run ever after in one mingled current.

By drinking of these fountains, which, though shut up from all other human beings, shall be always accefsible to you, it will be in your power to regulate your future life.

When you are drinking the water of joy from the alabaster fountain, you may form your wish, and it shall be granted. As you raise your wish higher, the water will be sweeter and sweeter to the taste ; but beware that you are not tempted by its increasing sweetness to repeat your draughts, for the ill effects of your wish can only be removed by drinking the spring of sorrow from the bason of Aint, which will be bitter in the same

propora tion as the water of joy was sweet. Now, my Floretta, make the experiment, and give me the first proof of moderate desires. Take the golden cup that stands on the margin of the spring of joy, form your wish and drink,


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Floretta wanted no time to deliberate on the subject of her wish; her first desire was the increase of her beauty. She had some disproportion of features. She took the сир

and wished to be agreeable; the water was sweet, and the drank copiously; and in the fountain, which was clearer than crystal, she saw that her face was completely regular.

She then filled the cup again, and wished for a rofy bloom upon her cheeks: the water was sweeter than before, and the colour of her cheeks was heightened.

She next wished for a sparkling eye: the water grew yet more pleasant, and her glances were like the beams of the sun.

She could not yet stop; she drank again, desired to be made a perfect beauty, and a perfect beauty she became.

She had now whatever her heart could wish; and making an humble reverence to Lilinet, requested to be restored to her own habitation. They went back, and the fairies in the way wondered at the change of Floretta's form. She came home delighted to her mother, who, on seeing the improvement, was yet more delighted than herself.

Her mother from that time pushed her forward into public view: Floretta was at all the resorts of idleness and assemblies of pleasure ; she was fatigued with balls, she was cloyed with treats, she was exhausted by the necessity of returning compliments. This life delighted her awhile, but custom soon destroyed its pleasure. She found that the men who courted her to day, resigned her on the morrow to other flatterers, and that the wo


men attacked her reputation by whispers and calumnies, till without knowing how she had offended, she was shunned as infamous.

She knew that her reputation was destroyed by: the i envy of her beauty, and resolved to degrade herself from the dangerous pre-eminence. She went to the bush where she rescued the bird, and called for Lady Lilinet. Immediately Lilinet appeared, and discovered by Floretta's dejected look, that she had drank too much from the alabafter fountain.

Follow me, she cried, my Floretta, and be wiser for the future.

They went to the fountains, and Floretta began to taste the waters of forrow, which were so bitter that she withdrew more than once the cup from her mouth : at last she resolutely drank away the perfection of beauty, the sparkling eye and rosy bloom, and left herself only agreeable.

She lived for some time with great content; but content is seldom lasting. She had a desire in a short time again to taste the waters of joy: she called for the conduct of Lilinet, and was led to the alabafter fountain, where she drank, and wished for a faithful lover.

After her return she was soon addressed by a young man, whom she thought worthy of her affection. He courted, and flattered, and promised; till at last she yielded up her heart. He then applied to her parents ; and, finding her fortune less than he expected, contrived a quarrel and deserted her.

Exasperated by her disappointment, she went in quest of Lilinet, and expoftulated with her for the deceit which


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