THE METAL PIG
the soldiers ; then there was great rejoicing ; and the painter caressed the boy, and gave him a handful of pictures.
Oh, those were capital pieces—such funny heads !—and truly the Metal Pig was there among them, bodily. Oh, nothing could be more superb ! By means of a few strokes it was made to stand there on the paper, and even the house that stood behind it was sketched in.
Oh, if one could only draw and paint! Then one could bring the whole world to oneself.
On the first leisure moment of the following day, the little fellow seized the pencil, and on the back of one of the pictures he attempted to copy the drawing of the Metal Pig, and he succeeded !—it was certainly rather crooked, rather up and down, one leg thick and another thin ; but still it was to be recognized, and he rejoiced himself at it. The pencil would not quite work as it should do, that he could well observe ; but on the next day a second Metal Pig was drawn by the side of the first, and this looked a hundred times better ; and the third was already so good that every one could tell what it was meant for.
But the glove-making prospered little, and his errands in the town were executed but slowly ; for the Metal Pig had taught him that all pictures may be drawn on paper ; and Florence is a picture-book for any one who chooses to turn over its pages. On the Piazza del Trinitd stands a slender pillar, and upon it the goddess of justice, blindfolded and with her scales in her hand. Soon she was placed on the paper, and it was the little glove-maker's boy who placed her there. The collection of pictures increased, but as yet it only contained representations of lifeless objects, when one day Bellissima came gambolling before him.
' Stand still! ' said he,' then you shall be made beautiful and put into my collection.'
But Bellissima would not stand still, so she had to be bound fast; her head and tail were tied, and she barked and jumped, and the string had to be pulled tight; and then the signora came in.
* You wicked boy I—The poor creature ! ' was all she could utter.
And she pushed the boy aside, thrust him away with