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The Parents' Review

A Monthly Magazine of Home-Training and Culture

Edited by Charlotte Mason.

"Education is an atmosphere, a discipline, a life."
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Notes and Queries.


Volume 2, 1891/92, pg. 558


It might interest some of the little ones to hear of our latest pet. Last winter, during the severest frost, a magpie flew into the house for warmth. We gave him milk and bread, and he lived in the nursery for two days and two nights until he looked stronger, when we opened the window and away he flew. The next day he returned, and since then has never left us, always coming when we call him. He is very impudent, and, I am sorry to say, is a little thief, but then you see he cannot read the Parents' Review, and knows no better. He flew off with a silver thimble one day, and we watched him dig a hole in the garden and bury it. When he has too much bread he always hides it in the ground, and fetches it as he requires it. Our cat is very friendly with him, and now the summer is here we generally spend the morning in the garden, together with two dogs, the cat, and the magpie. The children play at being Robinson Crusoe with his animals. Hanse, as they call the magpie, dearly loves a game at hide and seek round a tree. He runs backwards and forwards, and no child can catch him. If ever a bird laughs he does, when they rush wildly round and always miss him. Like some little children he is revengeful. A neighbour's little boy struck him one day with a stick, and Hanse flew at him in such a passion that the child's cries brought everybody to the rescue. Since then he will not play any more with the children in that garden, but runs after them and pecks at their little white legs. But to the children who have never been unkind to him he is everything that is amiable and sweet. He has so far only learnt to say one word. When asked, "Hanse, have you had your dinner?" he puts his head on one side in a thoughtful manner, and says "No." I am afraid he often says this after a very substantial meal. So you see Hanse has many lessons to learn yet. He was caught one day and put into a cage, but he then refused to eat, and became so thin in two days that his captor opened the door and set him free, and Hanse has since been allowed perfect liberty. Our children say they would like to know if any other little ones belonging to the Parents' Review have any pets, and what they can do. MATER.


Typed by Serena, April 2013