| Fifty Famous Stories Retold|
|by James Baldwin|
|Includes fifty legendary tales depicting certain romantic episodes in the lives of well-known heroes and famous men, or in the history of a people. Children naturally take a deep interest in such stories. The reading of them will not only give pleasure but will lay the foundation for broader literary studies, as nearly all are the subjects of frequent allusions in poetry and prose. Ages 6-9 |
 NEARLY two thousand years ago there lived
in Rome a man whose name was Julius
Cæsar. He was the
greatest of all the Romans.
Why was he so great?
He was a brave warrior, and had conquered many countries
for Rome. He was wise in planning and in doing. He knew
how to make men both love and fear him.
At last he made himself the ruler of Rome. Some said that
he wished to become its king. But the Romans at that time
did not believe in kings.
Once when Cæsar was passing through a little country
village, all the men, women, and children of the place, came
out to see him. There were not more than fifty of them, all
together, and they were
led by their mayor, who told each one what to do.
These simple people stood by the roadside
and watched Cæsar
pass. The mayor looked very proud and happy; for was he
not the ruler of this village? He felt that he was almost
as great a man as Cæsar himself.
Some of the fine officers who were with Cæsar laughed.
They said, "See how that fellow struts at the head of his
 "Laugh as you will," said Cæsar, "he has reason to be
proud. I would rather be the head man of a village than the
second man in Rome!"
At another time, Cæsar was crossing a narrow sea in a
boat. Before he was halfway to the farther shore, a storm
overtook him. The wind blew hard; the waves clashed high;
the lightning flashed; the thunder rolled.
It seemed every minute as though the boat would sink. The
captain was in great fright. He had crossed the sea many
times, but never in such a storm as this. He trembled with
fear; he could not guide the boat; he fell down upon his
knees; he moaned, "All is lost! all is lost!"
But Cæsar was not afraid. He bade the man get up and take
his oars again.
"Why should you be afraid?" he said. "The boat will not be
lost; for you have Cæsar on board."
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