The Little Minister

The Little Minister

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The Little Minister by J. M. Barrie

Published:

1891

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The Little Minister

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This picturing of Scottish village life and characters is a delightful one. Gavin Dishart, untried and tremendously in earnest in his high calling, is given charge of the Auld Licht Manse in Thrumms, where he at once becomes the property of all the Kirk and village folk, subject at all times to their fond interference and severe criticism. His experiences are told with the mingling of quaint humor and delicate pathos which characterizes the author. The story of the Little Minister's manly love for and loyal holding to the Egyptian, a fascinating gipsy girl, who crosses his path, is a lovely glimpse of the power of a true man's love; and the awakening of thoughtless, untamed Babby to the deeper meaning of life through her love for Gavin is told with great tenderness and beauty. The plot is a strong one and is given with true dramatic power.

Book Excerpt

o long, Jim," and sank.

A month afterwards Margaret sold her share in the smack, which was all Adam left her, and the furniture of the house was rouped. She took Gavin to Glasgow, where her only brother needed a housekeeper, and there mother and son remained until Gavin got his call to Thrums. During those seventeen years I lost knowledge of them as completely as Margaret had lost knowledge of me. On hearing of Adam's death I went back to Harvie to try to trace her, but she had feared this, and so told no one where she was going.

According to Margaret, Gavin's genius showed itself while he was still a child. He was born with a brow whose nobility impressed her from the first. It was a minister's brow, and though Margaret herself was no scholar, being as slow to read as she was quick at turning bannocks on the girdle, she decided, when his age was still counted by months, that the ministry had need of him. In those days the first question asked of a child was not, "Tell me your name," but "What a

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