In the "Beacon Second Reader" the author has chosen for his stories only those of recognized literary merit; and while it has been necessary to rearrange and sometimes rewrite them for the purpose of simplification, yet he has endeavored to retain the spirit which has served to endear these ancient tales to the children of all ages. The fairy story appeals particularly to children who are in the second school year. It has been proved by our ablest psychologists that at about this period of development, children are especially susceptible to the stimulus of the old folklore. They are in fact passing through the stage which corresponds to the dawn of the human race, when demons, dragons, fairies, and hobgoblins were as firmly believed in as rivers and mountains.
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