Alfred Poole” not only glorifies its young subject, it provides him—and other young readers of Robert Merry’s Museum—with an etiquette code and with incentive to do well in school.


http://www.merrycoz.org/museum/POOLE.xhtml
“Alfred Poole” (from Robert Merry’s Museum, May 1845; p. 184)

When Alfred Poole

First went to school,

He was but scarcely seven;

Yet knew as well

To read and spell

As most boys of eleven.

He took his seat,

And wrote quite neat,

Nor ever idly acted;

And then, beside,

He multiplied,

Divided, and subtracted.

The master said,

And stroked his head,

“If thus you persevere,

My little friend,

You may depend

Upon a prize next year.”

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