Home  |  Authors  |  Books  |  Stories  |  What's New  |  How to Get Involved 
   T h e   B a l d w i n   P r o j e c t
     Bringing Yesterday's Classics to Today's Children                 @mainlesson.com
Search This Site Only
 
 
The Oak-Tree Fairy Book by  Clifton Johnson
Table of Contents

[Illustration] Two new titles every week when you join Gateway to the Classics

Learn More
[Illustration]

 

 

THE MASTER OF ALL MASTERS

[215]

A
GIRL once hired herself for a servant to a queer old gentleman who, as soon as she came to his house ready for work, said, "Before you begin I want to give you some instructions."

"Very well, sir," said she.

"In my house I have my own names for things," he continued, "and I beg you to carefully heed and remember what I say."

"Oh, certainly, sir, I will do that," she replied.

"Now, firstly," said he, "what will you call me?"

"Oh, I will call you master, or mister, or whatever you please, sir," said she.

"No, no," said he, "you must call me 'master of all masters'; and what would you call this?" he asked pointing to his bed.

"Oh, I would call it a bed, or a couch, or whatever you please, sir," she replied.

"No," said he, "that's my 'barnacle'; and what [216] do you call these?" he inquired, pointing to his pantaloons.

"Oh, I call them breeches, or trousers, or whatever you please, sir," said she.

"You must call them 'squibs and crackers,' " said he; "and what would you call her?" he asked, pointing to the cat.

"Oh, I would call her cat, or pussy, or whatever you please, sir," said she.

"You must call her 'white-faced simminy,' " said he; "and what do you call this?" he asked, waving his hand toward the fire.

"Oh, I call it fire, or flame, or whatever you please, sir," said she.

"You must call it 'hot cockalorum,' " said he; "and what do you call this?" he asked, pointing to some water.

"Oh, I call it water, or wet, or whatever you please, sir," she replied.

"No," said he, " 'pondybus' is its name here; and what do you call the building in which I reside?"

"Oh, I call it house, or cottage, or whatever you please, sir," said she.

"You must call it 'high-topper mountain,' " he ordered.

That very night the servant awoke her master [217] from a sound sleep by pounding with her fists on his door and shouting in great fright, "Master of all masters, get out of your barnacle and put on your squibs and crackers; for white-faced simminy has got a spark of hot cockalorum on her tail, and unless you get some pondybus, the high-topper mountain will be all on hot cockalorum!"


[Illustration]

In saying this she had used just the words her master had ordered, but by so doing she had been so long explaining what was the matter that the house was on fire by the time she finished. The names spread rapidly, and though the servant and her master escaped, the building burned to the ground.

[218] The queer old gentleman built another house presently and hired another servant; but he let her call things by their ordinary names, and did not attempt to teach her invented ones of his own.


 Table of Contents  |  Index  | Previous: The Fairy Cow  |  Next: Mr. Micrawble
Copyright (c) 2000-2012 Yesterday's Classics, LLC. All Rights Reserved.