GROWING in the fields are the lentiles, from which the same kind of pottage is still made which cost Esau his birthright. Returning from the field, weary with hunting, and faint with hunger, Esau smelt the savory pottage his brother Jacob had made, and asked for it. Jacob, instead of feeling sorry for his brother's sufferings, and gladly giving him the pottage, took advantage of his necessity, and required Esau to sell his birthright in exchange for a mess of red pottage. 

In the southern part of Egypt, where corn is very scarce, lentiles are mixed with a little barley, and made into a kind of bread called "bettau." 

This bread is of a yellow golden color, and although rather heavy, is said not to taste badly, and to be almost the only kind of bread eaten by the poorer people. Old writers often mention the lentile; indeed, so much attention, so much care was bestowed on its cultivation, that several varieties of it became remarkable for their excellence. The lentiles of Pelusium, in Egypt, were highly esteemed, not only in Egypt, but also in foreign countries. Large quantities of them were exported from Alexandria. 

The lentile does not grow more than six or eight inches high, and is an annual, resembling, when green, a young pea-runner, except that its leaves are smaller and more delicate. At intervals along the parent stalk, which is not very strong, small stems branch out and end in tendrils; the leaves are set with great regularity along these stems, and with the tendrils the lentile supports itself, clinging to other plants, or anything near it. 

Branching from the main stalk are small stems on which purple flowers bloom in May, and from which, in July hang the short, ripe pods, each containing three flat, round seeds. In harvest the lentiles are pulled up like flax, not cut with a sickle like wheat.

—Children's Guest. 


MANY people seem to forget that character grows: that it is not something to put on ready-made with womanhood, or manhood—but day by day, here a little and there a little, grows with the growth and strengthens with the strength, until, good or bad, it becomes a coat of mail. Look at a man of business so prompt, reliable, conscientious, yet clear-headed and energetic. When do you suppose he developed all those admirable qualities? 

When he was a boy. Let us see how a boy of ten years gets up in the morning, works, plays, studies, and we will tell you just what kind of a man he will make. The boy that is too late at breakfast and late at school, stands a poor chance to be a prompt man. The boy who neglects his duties, be they ever so small, and then excuses himself by saying, "I forgot I, I didn't think!" will never be a reliable man. • And the boy who finds pleasure in the suffering of weaker things, will never be a noble, generous, kind man—a gentleman. 


LAPLAND has a long winter night, beginning in early October, ending in June. What a long gloomy cavern those eight months are! Not wholly gloomy, either, for moon and stars and northern lights hang their glory in the earth's dark roof. 

The last day that the sun appears in October, the inhabitants of a village join in a procession, that somberly winds up to some hilltop, and there they look off upon the setting sun.  It burns like a candle-flame on the edge of the horizon; and then, as if some mighty hand had covered it with an extinguisher, it goes out! In June, all go up the hill again to see the sun come over the eastern slopes.