For learning. For inspiration. Or just for fun.
The Insect on the Leaf : Scrooge begs the Spirit of Christmas to tell him what will happen to Tiny Tim.
The Insect on the Leaf

From ‘A Christmas Carol’, by Charles Dickens

Once, Ebenezer Scrooge thought that disabled children should be left to die. Now, he is all anxiety to know what will become of his clerk’s lame and frail boy, tiny Tim.

“I SEE a vacant seat,” replied the Ghost, “in the poor chimney-corner, and a crutch without an owner, carefully preserved. If these shadows remain unaltered by the Future, none other of my race will find him here. What then? If he be like to die, he had better do it, and decrease the surplus population.”

Scrooge hung his head to hear his own words quoted by the Spirit, and was overcome with penitence and grief.

“Man,” said the Ghost, “if man you be in heart, not adamant, forbear that wicked cant until you have discovered What the surplus is, and Where it is.

“Will you decide what men shall live, what men shall die? It may be, that in the sight of Heaven, you are more worthless and less fit to live than millions like this poor man’s child. Oh God! to hear the Insect on the leaf pronouncing on the too much life among his hungry brothers in the dust!”

From ‘A Christmas Carol’, by Charles Dickens

More like this

Charles Dickens (19) Extracts from Literature (93) Right to Life (2) Fiction (83)

Picture: © William Cho, Wikimedia Commons. Licence: CC-BY-SA 2.0. View original
A blue dragonfly on a leaf. © William Cho, Wikimedia Commons. Licence: CC-BY-SA 2.0.
Next
By Anthony Hope
(1863-1933)

Amazon Books

Featured Music

Letters Game

Make words from two or more of the tiles below. What is the highest-scoring word you can make?

Press enter or type a space to see feedback on your word.

More like this: High Tiles Games with Words

Numbers Game

Make the total shown using two or more of the numbers underneath it. You can add, subtract, divide and multiply. Use any number once only.

More like this: Target Number (Mental Arithmetic Game) Mental Arithmetic

Selected Stories
During the Indian Mutiny, over a thousand men, women and children were trapped in the Commissioner’s residence at Lucknow.
Heracles shows his capacity for thinking outside the box, but spoils it by trying to be just a little bit too clever.
A young Peter the Great of Russia toured Europe seeking help for his diplomatic, military and architectural plans.
By John Buchan
(1875-1940)
In John Buchan’s story about the Great War, Richard Hannay must watch as his friend sacrifices his life for the Allies.
A team of amateurs gave Europe’s finest a drubbing.
An eccentric, self-made businesswoman, who ‘made three fortunes and spent five’ in the campaign against the death penalty.