« ElőzőTovább »
to nobody. His son Rip, an urchin begotten in his own likeness, promised to inherit the habits, with the old clothes, of his father. He was generally seen trooping like a colt at his mother's heels, equipped in a pair of his father's cast-off galligaskins, which he had much ado to hold up with one hand, as a fine lady does her train in bad weather.
- IRVING: Rip Van Winkle.
What do you learn of Rip's character from the description of his farm and children?
Write a description of some one you know well.
Write a description of some odd character you have known. Show the person's peculiarities by calling attention to his manner, attitude, or language.
THE AIRMEN'S DUTY DONE
For Study and Composition
The following is a true and accurate account of an air raid made by Captain Bewsher, of the British flying forces, in the summer of 1918:
Night had come at last. Clear stars glittered overhead in the cloudless sky that seemed like blue velvet. Far away could be seen the black manes of forests and the clear outline of hills unobscured by any mist. Low in the east hung a brilliant golden moon.
The thickly-clad pilot standing by his machine could scarcely realize that the long-wished-for opportunity had come after so many nights of weary waiting and disappointment. He gave an order to the attending mechanic and climbed into the machine. Sitting in his leather-covered seat, he tested two engines, which roared with a steady note on either side of him.
The heavily-muffled observer, equipped with maps, pistols, notebooks, and two thermos flasks, settled himself for the journey. When all was ready, a whistle blew and the engines roared with a splendid note of power. The great machine shook itself, began to move across the grass, and thundered triumphantly into the air.
Soon the airmen crossed the shell-torn area of the lines, over which star shells were bursting, and moved steadily forward over the curving river, which lay glittering like a silver scarf far below them. For a time they saw no lights at all. Metz and Thionville lay in darkness, though here and there a dull red glare revealed the position of blast furnaces of the Briey Basin.
Forty miles behind the lines they began to see villages, the lamplit streets of which, radiating from the center, made them look like glowing starfish. They passed near Treves, which lay in darkness, though some random shells burst high above the town. A pale searchlight, rendered useless by the moonlight, moved inquiringly to and fro. On and on they flew, steadily picking up bend after bend of the river on the map. They passed over Coblenz, Neuwied, and Andorinach, which glittered like gems, their streets ablaze with light. The faithful engines on either side chanted a steady song. The machines passed over Bonn and flew on, and soon far ahead of them the airmen saw a great cluster of lights on the river.
"Cologne," thought the pilot. "Cologne," mentally echoed the observer. Soon they could see two bridges across the river, and the lights of huge factories south of the town. · The enemy's troops were being transferred to the western front, and at Cologne the railway stations were in a state of great activity. Although it was nearly one o'clock in the morning, lamps along the station platform were blazing. The pilot throttled his engines and the observer climbed through the little door into the front cockpit.
The time had come. Over the roofs of the moonlit city, whose houses and shadowed streets, churches, and great cathedral could be clearly seen, the giant airplane glided lower and lower. It was no feeling of vindictiveness that possessed the eager, muffled airmen. It was a feeling of exultation at their achievement. Taking the line running to the railway junction, the observer pressed the bomb lever slowly forward, and then again and again. Over the pale city for a moment hung great yellow bombs ere they began their swift downward rush. The airmen's eyes were fixed on the city below. Lights shone in even lines in the street. In the railway station could be seen white plumes of smoke rising from the railway engines. Two great red flashes suddenly appeared nearer still, and then the six remaining bombs burst on the huge railway junction.
As they sped back above the silver river, searchlights moved ceaselessly over the town and scattered shells flickered in the starlit skies. In the wrecked station lay a troop train, overturned, torn, and splintered. The British airmen had achieved their object.
- PAUL BEWSHER.
Briefly describe this flight taken by Captain Bewsher.
Tell what you know about recent developments in aircraft.
THE OAK TREE
For Study and Composition
Study the following poem:
Sing for the Oak Tree,
The monarch of the wood;
That groweth green and good;
Within the forest shade;
When we are lowly laid !
The Oak Tree was an acorn once,
And fell upon the earth;
And gave the Oak Tree birth.
Two leaves it had at first,
Then out the branches burst.
The little sapling Oak Tree!
Its root was like a thread
Then out it freely spread;
It grappled with the ground,
Its firmest footing found.