| For the Children's Hour|
|by Carolyn Sherwin Bailey|
|A choice collection of stories for the preschool child, carefully selected, adapted, and arranged by two veteran kindergarten teachers. Includes nature stories, holiday stories, fairy tales and fables, as well as stories of home life. Emphasis is placed on fanciful tales for their value in the training of the imagination and on cumulative tales for developing a child's sense of humor and appealing to his instinctive love of rhyme and jingle. Ages 4-7 |
THE STORY OF ARACHNE
C. S. B. Adapted from the Greek myth.
THERE was once a beautiful little earth-child named
Arachne, who was a wonderful weaver of tapestry. She
lived with her father in a far-away forest and she set
her loom out under the trees, that she might match the
colors of the birds, the flowers and the sky.
As her fingers flew in and out among the bright
threads, the fairies left their play under the trees to
watch her. The cloth grew wide and long, and Arachne
wove such beautiful pictures upon it that one could
almost hear the rustling of the trees and smell the gay
"The goddess Minerva, the mother of all the weavers,
must help her," cried all who watched Arachne; but
Arachne was a proud child. She tossed her head. "No
one helps me," she cried, "and no one can weave as well
as I," she said scornfully.
One day an old woman in a long, dark cloak came through
the forest and stopped by Arachne's loom.
 "It is wonderful tapestry," she said, "but you
must not expect to excel the gods, my child."
Proud Arachne laughed scornfully.
"If the goddess Minerva herself were here," she said, "I
would show her that my work is the better."
In a second the long, dark cloak fell from the old
woman's shoulders, and there stood the beautiful
"We shall see," she said.
So Arachne and the goddess Minerva began weaving.
Minerva wove the picture of a wonderful palace where
every one was doing a kind deed for some one else, but
through Arachne's cloth there ran a thread of pride and
selfishness that tangled and knotted until it quite
spoiled the picture.
Then Arachne threw herself upon her loom and hid her
face in the cloth, and tried to choke herself with the
threads because she was angry to see that any one could
weave better than she. But the goddess Minerva touched
her upon her forehead, and Arachne began to shrivel,
and twist about the threads in her loom, until she
changed to a spider—the mother of all the spiders, who
must spin and spin from morning till night! And that
is how the spider came to weave such a wonderful web.
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