The Tale of Peter Rabbit

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Overview

IT is said that the effect of
eating too much lettuce
is "soporific."
_I_ have never felt sleepy after
eating lettuces; but then _I_ am
not a rabbit.
They certainly had a very
soporific effect upon the Flopsy
Bunnies!
WHEN Benjamin Bunny
grew up, he married
his Cousin Flopsy. They had
a large family, and they were
very improvident and cheerful.
I do not remember the separate
names of their children;
they were generally called the
"Flopsy Bunnies."
AS there was not always
quite enough to eat,--
Benjamin used to borrow
cabbages from Flopsy's
brother, Peter Rabbit, who
kept a nursery garden.
SOMETIMES Peter Rabbit
had no cabbages to spare.
WHEN this happened, the
Flopsy Bunnies went
across the field to a rubbish
heap, in the ditch outside
Mr. McGregor's garden.
MR. McGREGOR'S rubbish
heap was a mixture.
There were jam pots and paper
bags, and mountains of chopped
grass from the mowing machine
(which always tasted oily), and
some rotten vegetable marrows
and an old boot or two. One
day--oh joy!--there were a
quantity of overgrown lettuces,
which had "shot" into flower.
THE Flopsy Bunnies simply
stuffed lettuces. By
degrees, one after another,
they were overcome with
slumber, and lay down in the
mown grass.
Benjamin was not so much
overcome as his children.
Before going to sleep he was
sufficiently wide awake to put
a paper bag over his head to
keep off the flies.
THE little Flopsy Bunnies
slept delightfully in the
warm sun. From the lawn
beyond the garden came the
distant clacketty sound of the
mowing machine. The bluebottles
buzzed about the wall,
and a little old mouse picked
over the rubbish among the
jam pots.
(I can tell you her name, she
was called Thomasina Tittlemouse,
a woodmouse with a
long tail.)
SHE rustled across the paper
bag, and awakened Benjamin
Bunny.
The mouse apologized
profusely, and said that she knew
Peter Rabbit.
WHILE she and Benjamin
were talking, close under
the wall, they heard a heavy
tread above their heads; and
suddenly Mr. McGregor
emptied out a sackful of lawn
mowings right upon the top
of the sleeping Flopsy Bunnies!
Benjamin shrank down
under his paper bag. The
mouse hid in a jam pot.
THE little rabbits smiled
sweetly in their sleep
under the shower of grass;
they did not awake because
the lettuces had been so
soporific.
They dreamt that their
mother Flopsy was tucking
them up in a hay bed.
Mr. McGregor looked down
after emptying his sack. He
saw some funny little brown
tips of ears sticking up through
the lawn mowings. He stared
at them for some time.
PRESENTLY a fly settled
on one of them and it
moved.
Mr. McGregor climbed
down on to the rubbish heap--
"One, two, three, four! five!
six leetle rabbits!" said he as
he dropped them into his sack.
The Flopsy Bunnies dreamt
that their mother was turning
them over in bed. They stirred
a little in their sleep, but still
they did not wake up.
MR. McGREGOR tied up
the sack and left it on
the wall.
He went to put away the
mowing machine.
WHILE he was gone, Mrs.
Flopsy Bunny (who
had remained at home) came
across the field.
She looked suspiciously at
the sack and wondered where
everybody was?
THEN the mouse came out
of her jam pot, and Benjamin
took the paper bag off
his head, and they told the
doleful tale.
Benjamin andFlopsy were
in despair, they could not
undo the string.
But Mrs. Tittlemouse was
a resourceful person. She
nibbled a hole in the bottom
corner of the sack.
THE little rabbits were
pulled out and pinched
to wake them.
Their parents stuffed the
empty sack with three rotten
vegetable marrows, an old
blacking-brush and two
decayed turnips.
THEN they all hid under
a bush and watched for
Mr. McGregor.
MR. McGREGOR came
back and picked up the
sack, and carried it off.
He carried it hanging down,
as if it were rather heavy.
The Flopsy Bunnies
followed at a safe distance.
THEY watched him go into
his house.
And then they crept up to
the window to listen.
MR. McGREGOR threw
down the sack on the
stone floor in a way that
would have been extremely
painful to the Flopsy Bunnies,
if they had happened to have
been inside it.
They could hear him drag
his chair on the flags, and
chuckle--
"One, two, three, four, five,
six leetle rabbits!" said Mr.
McGregor.
"EH? What's that? What
have they been spoiling
now?" enquired Mrs.
McGregor.
"One, two ...
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Product Details

  • BN ID: 2940014489744
  • Publisher: All classic book warehouse
  • Publication date: 5/1/2012
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 133
  • Age range: 6 - 8 Years
  • File size: 221 KB

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