The Little Match Girl, Page 2
A classic tale by Hans Christian Anderson
were shining from every window, and there was a savory smell of roast
goose, for it was New Year’s Eve. In a corner, between two houses,
one of which projected beyond the other, she sank down and huddled herself
together. She had drawn her little feet under her, but she could not
keep off the cold; and she dared not go home, for she had sold no matches,
and could not take home even a penny of money. Her father would certainly
beat her; besides, it was almost as cold at home as here, for they had
only the roof to cover them, through which the wind howled, although
the largest holes had been stopped up with straw and rags. Her little
hands were almost frozen with the cold. Ah! perhaps a burning match
might be some good, if she could draw it from the bundle and strike
it against the wall, just to warm her fingers. She drew one out—“scratch!”
how it sputtered as it burnt! It gave a warm, bright light, like a little
candle, as she held her hand over it. It was really a wonderful light.
It seemed to the little girl that she was sitting by a large iron stove,
with polished brass feet and a brass ornament. How the fire burned!
and seemed so beautifully warm that the child stretched out her feet
as if to warm them, when, lo! the flame of the match went out, the stove
vanished, and she had only the remains of the half-burnt match in her
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