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THE STORY OF THE AMULET
     

THE STORY OF THE AMULET

by E. Nesbit
 
CONTENTS


1. The Psammead
2. The Half Amulet
3. The Past
4. Eight Thousand Years Ago
5. The Fight in the Village
6. The Way to Babylon
7. 'The Deepest Dungeon Below the Castle Moat'
8. The Queen in London
9. Atlantis
10. The Little Black Girl and Julius

Overview

CONTENTS


1. The Psammead
2. The Half Amulet
3. The Past
4. Eight Thousand Years Ago
5. The Fight in the Village
6. The Way to Babylon
7. 'The Deepest Dungeon Below the Castle Moat'
8. The Queen in London
9. Atlantis
10. The Little Black Girl and Julius Caesar
11. Before Pharaoh
12. The Sorry-Present and the Expelled Little Boy
13. The Shipwreck on the Tin Islands
14. The Heart's Desire




CHAPTER 1. THE PSAMMEAD

There were once four children who spent their summer holidays in a white
house, happily situated between a sandpit and a chalkpit. One day they
had the good fortune to find in the sandpit a strange creature. Its eyes
were on long horns like snail's eyes, and it could move them in and out
like telescopes. It had ears like a bat's ears, and its tubby body was
shaped like a spider's and covered with thick soft fur--and it had hands
and feet like a monkey's. It told the children--whose names were
Cyril, Robert, Anthea, and Jane--that it was a Psammead or sand-fairy.
(Psammead is pronounced Sammy-ad.) It was old, old, old, and its
birthday was almost at the very beginning of everything. And it had
been buried in the sand for thousands of years. But it still kept its
fairylikeness, and part of this fairylikeness was its power to give
people whatever they wished for. You know fairies have always been able
to do this. Cyril, Robert, Anthea, and Jane now found their wishes come
true; but, somehow, they never could think of just the right things to
wish for, and their wishes sometimes turned out very oddly indeed. In
the end their unwise wishings landed them in what Robert called 'a very
tight place indeed', and the Psammead consented to help them out of it
in return for their promise never never to ask it to grant them any more
wishes, and never to tell anyone about it, because it did not want to
be bothered to give wishes to anyone ever any more. At the moment of
parting Jane said politely--

'I wish we were going to see you again some day.'

And the Psammead, touched by this friendly thought, granted the wish.
The book about all this is called Five Children and It, and it ends up
in a most tiresome way by saying--

'The children DID see the Psammead again, but it was not in the sandpit;
it was--but I must say no more--'

The reason that nothing more could be said was that I had not then been
able to find out exactly when and where the children met the Psammead
again. Of course I knew they would meet it, because it was a beast of
its word, and when it said a thing would happen, that thing happened
without fail. How different from the people who tell us about what
weather it is going to be on Thursday next, in London, the South Coast,
and Channel!

The summer holidays during which the Psammead had been found and
the wishes given had been wonderful holidays in the country, and the
children had the highest hopes of just such another holiday for the next
summer. The winter holidays were beguiled by the wonderful happenings
of The Phoenix and the Carpet, and the loss of these two treasures would
have left the children in despair, but for the splendid hope of their
next holiday in the country. The world, they felt, and indeed had some
reason to feel, was full of wonderful things--and they were really the
sort of people that wonderful things happen to. So they looked forward
to the summer holiday; but when it came everything was different, and
very, very horrid. Father had to go out to Manchuria to telegraph news
about the war to the tiresome paper he wrote for--the Daily Bellower,
or something like that, was its name. And Mother, poor dear Mother, was
away in Madeira, because she had been very ill. And The Lamb--I mean the
baby--was with her. And Aunt Emma, who was Mother's sister, had suddenly
married Uncle Reginald, who was Father's brother, and they had gone to
China, which is much too far off for you to expect to be asked to spend
the holidays in, however fond your aunt and uncle may be of you.

Product Details

BN ID:
2940013863149
Publisher:
SAP
Publication date:
12/15/2011
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Sales rank:
1,223,783
File size:
180 KB

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