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How Robin got his Red Breast

2006-07-13 22:26

  One winter, a long time ago, Jack Frost was very cruel. He made the snow fall thickly upon the ground, and he put ice on the ponds and frost on the window panes.

  The birds found it very hard to get food and soon they began to get hungry.

  Then, one day, the birds were sitting in a ring under a hedge, trying to think what was to be done. After a while a little brown, bird, called Robin, got up to speak.

  “I have an idea,” he said. “I will go into the gardens and try to get people to give us a lot more crumbs!”

  Now Robin had a way all of his own of making friends.

  He went along to the houses where people lived and in one of the gardens he saw a man clearing away the snow from a path, so he hopped up very close to the man.

  Most birds are very much afraid of men, but Robin was brave. He had to be, if he was to help the other birds.

  When the man saw how friendly Robin was, and how hungry he seemed to be, he went into his house and fetched a tray full of crumbs.

  Robin was glad, and he fiew off to fetch the other birds, and soon there were crowds of them in the kind man's garden.

  The best way they could say “Thank you” to the kind man was to eat the crumbs out of his hand.

  Robin then flew away into other gardens, and wherever he went he made friends.

  So, while the snow stayed on the ground the birds were able to feed after all.

  At last Jack Frost sent the snow away, and then the happy birds wanted to thank Robin so they made him a little red waistcoat, which he still wears. That is why he is now called Robin Redbreast.

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