Fun-lovin’ Bunyan

I took a cheap shot at John Bunyan, recently. I knew he was the author of “Pilgrim’s Progress,” but I didn’t realize he had tried his hand at kidlit. Thanks to Rosalie Halsey, here’s a rhyme circa 1685:

Upon the Frog


The Frog by nature is both damp and cold,
Her mouth is large, her belly much will hold,
She sits somewhat ascending, loves to be
Croaking in gardens tho’ unpleasantly.
That’s stinks as bad as Pilgrim’s Progress frankly. And it gets worse when we find that he has introduced the frog simply to give us a moral — which Halsey notes is a frequent vice of Bunyan’s: 

Comparison

The hypocrite is like unto this frog;
As like as is the Puppy to the Dog.
He is of nature cold, his mouth is wide
To prate, and at true Goodness to deride.

 

You can read Halsey’s book at Project Gutenberg:

 

 

FORGOTTEN BOOKS OF

THE AMERICAN NURSERY

A History of the Development of
the American Story-Book

BY

ROSALIE V. HALSEY

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