The Animal Story Book - online children's book

Edited By Andrew Lang And With Numerous Illustrations By H. J. Ford

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2o8
BEASTS BESIEGED
happy and comfortable once more. But that was not the feeling of the little boy who had been taken by his mother to see the beasts as a treat for his birthday. At each cage they passed he came to a standstill, and gazing at the animal with greedy eyes, he said, ' Mother, wouldn't you like to eat that? ' Every time his mother answered him, ' No one eats these beasts, my boy; they are brought from countries a long way off, and cost a great deal of money.' The child was silent for a moment, but at the sight of the zebra, the elk, or the little hyaena, his face brightened again, and his voice might be heard piping forth its old question, ' Mother, wouldn't you like to eat that?'
It is a comfort to think that the horrid greedy boy was disappointed in his hopes. Whatever else he may have eaten, the taste of lions and of bears is still strange to him, for the siege of Paris came to an end at last, and the animals were made happy as of old with their daily portions.
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