HEIDI, illustrated - complete online book

The Story Of A Young Orphan In Switzerland

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HEIDI
CHAPTER I
THE ALM-UNCLE
From the pleasantly situated old town of Mayenfeld a footpath leads up through shady green meadows to the foot of the mountains, which, as they gaze down on the valley, present a solemn and majestic aspect. Any one who follows it will soon catch the pungent fragrance of grassy pasture lands, for the footpath goes up straight and steep to the Alps.
One bright, sunny June morning, a tall, sturdy look­ing girl, evidently a native of the mountains, might have been seen climbing this narrow path. She led by the hand a little maiden, whose cheeks glowed as if a ruddy flame were under her dark brown skin. And what wonder ? In spite of the hot June sun, the child was bundled up as if for protection against the keenest cold. She could not have been five years old, but it was impossible to tell anything about her natural fig­ure, for she wore two or three dresses, one over the other, and a big red cotton handkerchief around her neck; her feet were lost in heavy hobnailed shoes, and
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