- By Johanna Spyri
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Johanna Louise Spyri (née Heusser; German: [joˈhana ˈʃpiːri]; 12 June 1827 – 7 July 1901) was a Swiss author of novels, notably children's stories, and is best known for her book Heidi. Born in Hirzel, a rural area in the canton of Zurich, Switzerland, as a child she spent several summers near Chur in Graubünden, the setting she later would use in her novels. In 1852, Johanna Heusser married Bernhard Spyri. Bernhard was a lawyer. Whilst living in the city of Zürich she began to write about life in the country. Her first story, A Leaf on Vrony's Grave, which deals with a woman's life of domestic violence, was published in 1880; the following year further stories for both adults and children appeared, among them the novel Heidi, which she wrote in four weeks. Heidi tells the story of an orphan girl who lives with her grandfather in the Swiss Alps, and is famous for its vivid portrayal of the landscape.
1. When Peter had called the goats together, he and Heidi started down the mountain.
2. “Will it be like that every day?” asked Heidi, eagerly.
3. “It usually is,” was the reply.
4. “What about tomorrow?” she inquired.
5. “Tomorrow it will be like that, I am sure,” Peter affirmed.
6. That made Heidi happy. She walked by Peter’s side, thinking over all the new things she had seen. Reaching the hut, they found the grandfather waiting for them on a bench under the fir trees. Heidi ran up to him, and the two goats followed, for they knew their master. Peter called to her: “Come again tomorrow!”
7. Heidi gave him her hand, assuring him that she would come, and finding herself surrounded by the goats, she hugged Snowhopper a last time.
8. When Peter had disappeared, Heidi returned to her grandfather. “Oh grandfather! It was so beautiful! I saw the fire and the roses on the rocks! And see the many flowers I am bringing you!” With that, Heidi shook them out of her apron. But oh, how miserable they looked! Heidi did not even know them anymore.
9. “What is the matter with them, grandfather? They looked so different!” Heidi exclaimed in her fright.
10. “They are made to bloom in the sun and not to be shut up in an apron,” said the grandfather.
11. “Then I shall never pick them anymore! Please, grandfather, tell me why the eagle screeches so loudly,” asked Heidi.
12. “First, go and take a bath. Afterward, we’ll go inside together, and I’ll tell you all about it during supper-time.”
13. They did as was proposed, and when Heidi sat on her high chair before her milk, she asked the same question as before.
14. “Because he is sneering at the people down below, who sit in the villages and make each other angry. He calls down to them:—’If you would go apart to live up, on the heights like me, you would feel much better!’” The grandfather said these last words with such a wild voice that it reminded Heidi of the eagle’s screech.
15. “Why do the mountains have no names, grandfather?” asked Heidi.
16. “They all have names, and if you tell me their shape, I can name them for you.”
17. Heidi described several, and the old man could name them all. The child told him now about all the happenings of the day, and especially about the wonderful fire. She asked how it came about.
18. “The sun does it,” he exclaimed. “Saying goodnight to the mountains, he throws his most beautiful rays to them, that they may not forget him till the morning.”
19. Heidi was so much pleased with this explanation that she could hardly wait to see the sun’s goodnight greetings repeated. It was time now to go to bed, and Heidi slept all night soundly . She dreamt that the little Snowhopper was bounding happily about on the glowing mountains with many glistening roses blooming around her.

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Word Lists:

Screech : (of a person or animal) give a loud, harsh, piercing cry

Soundly : in a way that is secure and reliable

Bloom : a flower, especially one cultivated for its beauty

Glisten : (of something wet or greasy) shine; glitter

Sneer : a contemptuous or mocking smile, remark, or tone

Hut : a small, simple, single-story house or shelter

Miserable : (of a person) wretchedly unhappy or uncomfortable

Glow : give out steady light without flame

Exclaim : cry out suddenly, especially in surprise, anger, or pain

Explanation : a statement or account that makes something clear


Additional Information:

Rating: A

Words: 545

Unique Words : 236

Sentences : 63

Reading Time : 2:25

Noun : 182

Conjunction : 41

Adverb : 45

Interjection : 6

Adjective : 18

Pronoun : 65

Verb : 99

Preposition : 38

Letter Count : 2,371

Sentiment : Positive

Tone : Conversational

Difficult Words : 80

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