Tale of Squirrel Nutkin by Beatrix Potter

Tale of Squirrel Nutkin

Beatrix Potter


Tale of Squirrel Nutkin by Beatrix Potter

“A STORY FOR NORAH”This is a Tale about a tail—a tail that belonged to a lit-tle red squirrel, and his name was Nutkin.He had a brother called Twinkleberry, and a great many cousins: they lived in a wood at the edge of a lake. In the middle of the lake there is an island covered with trees and nut bushes; and amongst those trees stands a hollow oak-tree, which is the house of an owl who is called Old Brown. One autumn when the nuts were ripe, and the leaves on the hazel bushes were golden and green—Nutkin and Twinkleberry and all the other little squirrels came out of the wood, and down to the edge of the lake. They made little rafts out of twigs, and they paddled away over the water to Owl Island to gather nuts.Each squirrel had a little sack and a large oar, and spread out his tail for a sail. They also took with them an offering of three fat mice as a present for Old Brown, and put them down upon his door-step.Then Twinkleberry and the other little squirrels each made a low bow, and said politely—"e;Old Mr. Brown, will you favour us with permission to gather nuts upon your island?"e; But Nutkin was excessively impertinent in his man-ners. He bobbed up and down like a little red cherry, singing—"e;Riddle me, riddle me, rot-tot-tote!A little wee man, in a red red coat!A staff in his hand, and a stone in his throat;If you'll tell me this riddle, I'll give you a groat."e;Now this riddle is as old as the hills; Mr. Brown paid no attention whatever to Nutkin.He shut his eyes obstinately and went to sleep.

About the Author

Beatrix Potter

Beatrix Potter was born in London in 1866. During her rather lonely childhood and later, as a young woman, she studied art and natural history. She acquired her love and knowledge of the countryside during family holidays, at first in Scotland and then in the Lake District. She started her career as children's author and illustrator in 1901 when she was thirty-five. In the years before the First World War, demand for her work was so great that she was publishing an average of two new stories a year. As she became financially independent, she was able to buy some land in the Lake District and in 1913, on her marriage to solicitor William Heelis, she moved to live there permanently. For the last thirty years of her life, writing and illustrating gave place to a second career as a sheep farmer and countryside conservationist.

Her little books never lost their popularity however and today they sell in their millions, translated into numerous languages, and the pleasures of those timeless tales continue to be enjoyed by children all over the world.

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Publication date

7th August 2015




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