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Such a one I have attempted to prepare, and I have sought aid from a variety of sources. I have gathered legends from one author and lays from another; I have collected fables and proverbs, aphorisms and allegories; and never forgetting that my book should be useful, I have also tried never to permit it to become dull. He who undertakes to wile himself into the good graces of the young, should never allow his stories to be too long, or his homilies too frequent and prosing; and I hope I have taken due care that this little volume should not be a trangressor of this politic rule.
After all, I offer the book to the public with much diffidence; I have ventured to step beyond the gentle and kind little audience who have so patiently listened to many of my stories; and now that I appear before more critical and knowing readers, I may not find the same indulgence as heretofore. Let them, however, consider the design of this work, which is, to furnish some useful or amusing passage for each day, and if the idle or vacant moments that occur are used in perusing them, I trust that at the end of the year, reader will not regret that the volume has fallen into his hands.