sends the little things down-stairs for a glass of Mellin's Food, and they come back beaming and reconciled.
Yet this pattern mother, conducting without a nurse this large world of little beings, tells me that she grew up not only without younger brothers and sisters, but without knowledge of young children.
Up to the time of her marriage, at twenty-two, she has no recollection of ever having taken any care of a child.
What, then, prepared her for this vast sphere of duty, this rearing of nine young immortals upon no severer pains and penalties than Mellin's Food?
It was, she assures me, the discipline of dolls.
Up to the age of thirteen her experience with dolls was on the very largest scale.
She had seldom less than twenty, each with its own wardrobe, ornaments, and possessions.
Every night of her life the twenty dolls were undressed and put to bed before their mistress went; and all their clothes were neatly folded and put away separately.
During the day, doubtless, each doll had its own career and position; was fed at table, fitted with new clothes, elevated into grandeur or repressed into humbleness.
When their young mistress grew up they were doubtless laid aside, or transferred to other children, or banished to that dusty purgatory of the garret from which no doll is ever translated to paradise.
I forget whether Hans Andersen
has ever duly chronicled