The Lamplighter

The Lamplighter

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The Lamplighter

The Lamplighter

Read FREE!

Excerpt

It was growing dark in the city. Out in the open country it would be light for half an hour or more, but in the streets it was already dusk. Upon the wooden doorstep of a low-roofed, dark and unwholesome-looking house, sat a little girl, earnestly gazing up the street. The house-door behind her was close to the sidewalk, and the step on which she sat was so low that her little unshod feet rested on the cold bricks. It was a chilly evening in November, and a light fall of snow had made the narrow streets and dark lanes dirtier and more cheerless than ever.

Many people were passing, but no one noticed the little girl, for no one in the world cared for her. She was clad in the poorest of garments; her hair was long, thick and uncombed, her complexion was sallow, and her whole appearance was unhealthy. She had fine dark eyes, but so large did they seem, in contrast to her thin, puny face, that they increased its peculiarity without increasing its beauty. Had she had a mother (which, alas! she had not), those friendly eyes would have found something in her to praise. But the poor thing was told, a dozen times a day, that she was the worst-looking child in the world, and the worst-behaved. No one loved her, and she loved no one; no one tried to make her happy, or cared whether she was so. She was but eight years old, and alone in the world.

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