Page by Page Books
Read Books Online, for Free
Part III. Nathaniel Hawthorne

XI. Grandfather's Dream

Page 3 of 3

Table Of Contents: Grandfather's Chair

Previous Page

Previous Chapter

Next Chapter

More Books

More by this Author

Grandfather promised amendment if ever he should have an opportunity to repeat his narrative. The good old chair, which still seemed to retain a due regard for outward appearance, then reminded him how long a time had passed since it had been provided with a new cushion. It likewise expressed the opinion that the oaken figures on its back would show to much better advantage by the aid of a little varnish.

"And I have had a complaint in this joint," continued the chair, endeavoring to lift one of its legs, "ever since Charley trundled his wheelbarrow against me."

"It shall be attended to," said Grandfather.

"And now, venerable chair, I have a favor to solicit. During an existence of more than two centuries you have had a familiar intercourse with men who were esteemed the wisest of their day. Doubtless, with your capacious understanding, you have treasured up many an invaluable lesson of wisdom. You certainly have had time enough to guess the riddle of life. Tell us, poor mortals, then, how we may be happy."

The lion's head fixed its eyes thoughtfully upon the fire, and the whole chair assumed an aspect of deep meditation. Finally it beckoned to Grandfather with its elbow, and made a step sideways towards him, as if it had a very important secret to communicate.

"As long as I have stood in the midst of human affairs," said the chair, with a very oracular enunciation, "I have constantly observed that Justice, Truth, and Love are the chief ingredients of every happy life."

We have hundreds more books for your enjoyment. Read them all!

"Justice, Truth, and Love!" exclaimed Grandfather. "We need not exist two centuries to find out that these qualities are essential to our happiness. This is no secret. Every human being is born with the instinctive knowledge of it."

"Ah!" cried the chair, drawing back in surprise. "From what I have observed of the dealings of man with man, and nation with nation, I never should have suspected that they knew this all-important secret. And, with this eternal lesson written in your soul, do you ask me to sift new wisdom for you out of my petty existence of two or three centuries?"

"But, my dear chair "--said Grandfather.

"Not a word more," interrupted the chair; "here I close my lips for the next hundred years. At the end of that period, if I shall have discovered any new precepts of happiness better than what Heaven has already taught you, they shall assuredly be given to the world."

In the energy of its utterance the oaken chair seemed to stamp its foot, and trod (we hope unintentionally) upon Grandfather's toe. The old gentleman started, and found that he had been asleep in the great chair, and that his heavy walking-stick had fallen down across his foot.

"Grandfather," cried little Alice, clapping her hand," you must dream a new dream every night about our chair!"

Laurence, and Clara, and Charley said the same. But the good old gentleman shook his head, and declared that here ended the history, real or fabulous, of GRANDFATHER'S CHAIR.

Page 3 of 3 Previous Page   Next Chapter
Who's On Your Reading List?
Read Classic Books Online for Free at
Page by Page Books.TM
Grandfather's Chair
Nathaniel Hawthorne

Home | More Books | About Us | Copyright 2004