This week's book of the week is a strange arithmetic book written and illustrated by Walter Crane.
Published by Marcus Ward & Co in 1885
In which young Dick buys a boat and taking a few necessaries, sets sail. But the wind and the weather take counsel against him and he finds himself cast up on a strange shore. The beach is made up of slates and pencils and so Dick sits down to write his sad story. At that very moment, several natives of the
Island appear and take
Dick to their King. Eventually, Dick is rescued and returned home.
Very early in life he was suited for a sailor
and, at the seaside, has thoughts of voyaging,
So he buys a boat
and sets sail.
But the wind and weather take counsel together,
Dick finds himself cast up on a strange shore,
composed principally of slates and pencils.
Then some strange figures suddenly appear,
but as they cannot come to an understanding
Dick is taken to their King, who, is engaged with an addition sum in his counting house.
Dick is shown into the parlour where the Queen offers him some honey
and sends him into the garden to help the maid do multiplication on the clothes line.
All that takes place is in strict accordance with the rules of Arithmetic.
But at the sight of a sail, Dick is very happy to go home!
I think this must be one of the oddest stories I've ever read! The illustrations, however, are a joy.
Walter Crane (1845–1915) was an English artist and book illustrator. He is considered to be the most prolific and influential children’s book creator of his generation. Reed more at Wikipedia
What do you make of this odd story?