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Produced by Juliet Sutherland, Chris Whitehead and the
Online Distributed Proofreading Team at









There is here presented to the reader a careful translation of "Heidi,"
one of the most popular works of the great Swiss authoress, Madam
Johanna Spyri. As particulars of her career are not easily gathered, we
may here state that Johanna Heusser was born at Zurich, June 12, 1827.
She wrote nothing in her youth. She was happily married to the Advocate
Spyri. Later, the Franco-Prussian war evoked from her a book devised
for a charitable purpose, and the success of this volume revealed her
future. She died at her home in Zurich in 1891. Her fame has spread to
all countries, and her many books have delighted not only the children
for whom they were so artfully written, but they have become favorites
with lovers of children as well.

As to "Heidi," itself, wherever mountains are seen or read about, the
simple account of the early life of the Swiss child, amid the beauties
of her passionately-loved home, will be a favorite book for younger
readers and those who seek their good.

Johanna Spyri lived amidst the scenes she so gracefully described. In
all her stories she shows an underlying desire to preserve her young
readers alike from misunderstanding and the mistaken kindness that
frequently hinders the happiness and natural development of their lives
and characters.

Among her many works are the following: "Arthur and His Squirrel,"
"On Sunday," "From the Swiss Mountains," "A Scion of the House of
Lesa," "The Great and the Small All May Aid," "From Near and Far,"
"Cornelius," "Lost but Not Forgotten," "Gritli's Children," 2 volumes,
"Without a Country," "What Shall Then Become of Her?," "Sina," "From
Our Own Country," "Ten Stories," 2 volumes, "In Leuchtensa," "Uncle
Titus," "A Golden Saying," "The Castle Wildenstein," "What Really
Happened to Her," "In the Valley of the Tilonne," "The Hauffer Mill."

M. H. M.


I. Heidi's First Mountain Climb 13

II. A New Home with Grandfather 22

III. Little Bear and Little Swan 29

IV. Shooting Down the Mountain Side 40

V. A Railroad Journey 52

VI. Clara, the Patient Little Invalid 60

VII. The Unfriendly Housekeeper 67

VIII. Surprises for the Children 79

IX. Mr. Sesemann Takes Heidi's Part 87

X. Clara's Lovable Grandmother 91

XI. Home-Sickness 98

XII. "My House Is Haunted" 102

XIII. At Home Again on the Mountain 112

XIV. The Coat with the Silver Buttons 126

XV. A Great Disappointment 135

XVI. The Doctor Comes with Presents 140

XVII. Excursions Over the Mountains 149

XVIII. A New Home for the Winter 157

XIX. Heidi Teaches Obstinate Peter 167

XX. A Strange Looking Procession 176

XXI. Happy Days for the Little Visitor 191

XXII. Wicked Peter and the Unlucky Chair 199

XXIII. Good-Bye to the Beautiful Mountain 217


Up the Mountain to Grandfather (_color_) FRONTISPIECE

Heidi Tenderly Stroked the Two Goats in Turn 27

Heidi Drank in the Golden Sunlight, the Fresh
Air and the Sweet Smell of the Flowers (_color_) 33

Heidi Now Began to Give a Lively Description
of Her Life with the Grandfather (_color_) 48

"Why, There Is Nothing Outside but
the Stony Streets" 72

Miss Rottermeyer Jumped Higher Than She
Had for Many Long Years (_color_) 80

Grandmother's Kind Advice Brings Comfort
to Heidi (_color_) 96

Heidi Learns to Make Doll Clothes 99

The Doctor Discovers Heidi's Home-Sickness 109

"Our Milk Tastes Nicer Than Anything Else
in the World, Grandfather" 123

It Was Not Long Before the Fir Trees Began
Their Old Song (_color_) 144

A Strange-Looking Procession Was Making
Its Way Up the Mountain (_color_) 192

The Little Invalid Finds That She Is
Able to Walk 208

"We Must Not Overdo It," He Said, Taking
Clara Up in His Arms 212

Peter Went Rolling and Bumping Down
the Slope 222

"Are You Really My Little Clara?" (_color_) 232

[Illustration: HEIDI]



On a bright June morning two figures - one a tall girl and the other
a child - could be seen climbing a narrow mountain path that winds up
from the pretty village of Mayenfeld, to the lofty heights of the Alm
mountain. In spite of the hot June sun the child was clothed as if to
keep off the bitterest frost. She did not look more than five years
old, but what her natural figure was like would be hard to say, for
she had on apparently two dresses, one above the other, and over these
a thick red woolen shawl. Her small feet were shod in thick, nailed

When the wayfarers came to the hamlet known as Doerfli, which is
situated half-way up the mountain, they met with greetings from all
sides, for the elder girl was now in her old home. As they were
leaving the village, a voice called out: "Wait a moment, Dete; if you
are going on up the mountain, I will come along with you."

The girl thus addressed stood still, and the child immediately let go
her hand and seated herself on the ground.

"Are you tired, Heidi?" asked her companion.

"No, I am hot," answered the child.

"We shall soon get to the top now. You must walk bravely on a little
longer, and take good, long steps, and in another hour we shall be
there," said Dete.

They were now joined by a stout, good-natured looking woman, who walked
on ahead with her old acquaintance.

"And where are you going with the child?" asked the one who had just
joined the party. "I suppose it is the child your sister left?"

"Yes," answered Dete. "I am taking her up to Uncle, where she must

"This child stay up there with Alm-Uncle! You must be out of your
senses, Dete! How can you think of such a thing! The old man, however,
will soon send you both packing off home again!"

"He cannot very well do that, seeing that he is her grandfather. He
must do something for her. I have had the charge of the child till now,
and I can tell you, Barbel, I am not going to give up the chance which
has just fallen to me of getting a good place, for her sake."

"That would be all very well if he were like other people," said
Barbel, "but you know what he is. And what can he do with a child,
especially with one so young! The child cannot possibly live with him.
But where are you thinking of going yourself?"

"To Frankfurt, where an extra good place awaits me," answered Dete.

"I am glad I am not the child," exclaimed Barbel. "Not a creature knows
anything about the old man up there. He will have nothing to do with
anybody, and never sets his foot inside a church from one year's end
to another. When he does come down once in a while, everybody clears
out of his way. The mere sight of him, with his bushy, grey eyebrows
and immense beard, is alarming enough. All kinds of things are said
about him. You, Dete, however, must certainly have learnt a good deal
concerning him from your sister."

"Yes, but I am not going to repeat what I heard. Suppose it should come
to his ears. I should get into no end of trouble about it."

Barbel put her arm through Dete's in a confidential sort of way, and
said: "Now do just tell me what is wrong with the old man. Was he
always shunned as he is now, and was he always so cross? I assure you I
will hold my tongue if you will tell me."

"Very well then, I will tell you - but just wait a moment," said Dete,
looking around for Heidi who had slipped away unnoticed.

"I see where she is," exclaimed Barbel, "look over there!" and she
pointed to a spot far away from the footpath. "She is climbing up the
slope yonder with Peter and his goats. But tell me about the old man.
Did he ever have anything more than his two goats and his hut?"

"I should think so indeed," replied Dete with animation; "he was at
one time the owner of one of the largest farms in Domleschg, where my
mother used to live. But he drank and gambled away the whole of his
property, and when this became known to his mother and father they died
of sorrow, one shortly after the other. Uncle, having nothing left to
him but his bad name, disappeared and it was heard that he had gone
to Naples as a soldier. After twelve or fifteen years he reappeared
in Domleschg, bringing with him a young son whom he tried to place
with some of his kinspeople. Every door, however, was shut in his
face, for no one wished to have any more to do with him. Embittered
by this treatment, he vowed never to set foot in Domleschg again, and
he then came to Doerfli where he lived with his little boy. His wife,
it seemed, had died shortly after the child's birth. He must have
accumulated some money during his absence, for he apprenticed his son
Tobias to a carpenter. He was a steady lad, and kindly received by
every one in Doerfli. His father, however, was still looked upon with
suspicion, and it was even rumored that he had killed a man in some
brawl at Naples."

"But why does everyone call him Uncle? Surely he can't be uncle to
everyone living in Doerfli," asked Barbel.

"Our grandmothers were related, so we used to call him Uncle, and as
my father had family connections with so many people in Doerfli, soon
everyone fell into the habit of calling him Uncle," explained Dete.

"And what happened to Tobias," further questioned Barbel, who was
listening with deep interest.

"Tobias was taught his trade in Mels, and when he had served his
apprenticeship he came back to Doerfli and married my sister Adelaide.
But their happiness did not last long. Two years after their marriage
Tobias was killed in an accident. His wife was so overcome with grief
that she fell into a fever from which she never recovered. She had
always been rather delicate and subject to curious attacks, during
which no one knew whether she was awake or sleeping. And so two months
after Tobias had been carried to the grave, his wife followed him.
Their sad fate was the talk of everybody far and near, and the general
opinion was expressed that it was a punishment which Uncle deserved
for the godless life he had led. Our minister endeavored to awaken
his conscience, but the old man grew only more wrathful and stubborn
and would not speak to a soul. All at once we heard that he had gone
to live up on the Alm mountain and that he did not intend to come down
again. Since then he has led his solitary life up there, and everyone
knows him now by the name of Alm-Uncle. Mother and I took Adelaide's
little one, then only a year old, into our care. When mother died last
year, and I went down to the Baths to earn some money, I paid old Ursel
to take care of her. So you see I have done my duty, now it's Uncle's
turn. But where are you going to yourself, Barbel? We are now half way
up the Alm."

"We have just reached the place I wanted," answered Barbel. "I must see
Peter's mother who is doing some spinning for me. So, good-bye, Dete,
and good luck to you."

She went toward a small, dark brown hut, which stood a few steps away
from the path in a hollow that afforded it some protection from the
mountain wind.

Here lived Peter, the eleven-year-old boy, with his mother Brigitta and
his blind grandmother who was known to all the old and young in the
neighborhood as just "Grandmother."

Every morning Peter went down to Doerfli to bring up a flock of goats
to browse on the mountain. At sundown he went skipping down the
mountain again with his light-footed animals. When he reached Doerfli
he would give a shrill whistle, whereupon all the owners of the goats
would come out to take home the animals that belonged to them.

Dete had been standing for a good ten minutes looking about her in
every direction for some sign of the children and the goats. Meanwhile
Heidi and the goatherd were climbing up by a far and roundabout way,
for Peter knew many spots where all kinds of good food, in the shape
of shrubs and plants, grew for his goats. The child, exhausted with
the heat and weight of her thick clothes, panted and struggled after
him, at first with some difficulty. She said nothing, but her little
eyes kept watching first Peter, as he sprang nimbly hither and thither
on his bare feet, clad only in his short, light breeches, and then
the slim-legged goats that went leaping over rocks and shrubs. All at
once she sat down on the ground, and began pulling off her shoes and
stockings. Then she unwound the hot red shawl and took off her frock.
But there was still another to unfasten, for Dete had put the Sunday
dress on over the everyday one, to save the trouble of carrying it.
Quick as lightning the everyday frock followed the other, and now the
child stood up, clad only in her light short-sleeved under garment. She
stretched out her little bare arms with glee. Leaving all her clothes
together in a tidy little heap, she went jumping and climbing up after
Peter and the goats as nimbly as any of the party.

Now that Heidi was able to move at her ease, she began to enter into
conversation with Peter. She asked him how many goats he had, where he
was going to with them, and what he had to do when he arrived there.
At last, after some time, they came within view of Dete. Hardly had
the latter caught sight of the little company climbing up towards her
when she shrieked out: "Heidi, what have you been doing! What a sight
you have made of yourself! And where are your two frocks and the red
wrapper? And the new shoes I bought, and the new stockings I knitted
for you - everything gone! not a thing left! What can you have been
thinking of, Heidi; where are all your clothes?"

The child quietly pointed to a spot below on the mountain side and
answered, "Down there."

"You good-for-nothing little thing!" exclaimed Dete angrily, "what
could have put it into your head to do that? What made you undress
yourself? What do you mean by it?"

"I don't want any clothes," said Heidi.


"You wretched, thoughtless child! have you no sense in you at all?"
continued Dete, scolding and lamenting. "Peter, you go down and fetch
them for me as quickly as you can, and you shall have something nice,"
and she held out a bright new piece of money to him that sparkled in
the sun. Peter was immediately off down the steep mountain side, taking
the shortest cut, and was back again so quickly with the clothes that
even Dete was obliged to give him a word of praise as she handed him
the promised money. Peter promptly thrust it into his pocket and his
face beamed with delight, for it was not often that he was the happy
possessor of such riches.

"You can carry the things up for me as far as Uncle's, as you are going
the same way," went on Dete, who was preparing to continue her climb
up the mountain side, which rose in a steep ascent immediately behind
the goatherd's hut. Peter willingly undertook to do this, and followed
after her. After a climb of more than three-quarters of an hour they
reached the top of the Alm mountain. Uncle's hut stood on a projection
of the rock, exposed indeed to the winds, but where every ray of sun
could rest upon it, and a full view could be had of the valley beneath.
Behind the hut stood three old fir trees, with long, thick, unlopped
branches. Beyond these rose a further wall of mountain, the lower
heights still overgrown with beautiful grass and plants.

Against the hut, on the side looking towards the valley, Uncle had put
up a seat. Here he was sitting, his pipe in his mouth and his hands
on his knees, quietly looking out, when the children, the goats, and
Dete suddenly clambered into view. Heidi was at the top first. She went
straight up to the old man, put out her hand, and said, "Good-evening,

"So, so, what is the meaning of this?" he asked gruffly, as he gave
the child an abrupt shake of the hand, and gazed at her from under
his bushy eyebrows. Heidi stared steadily back at him in return with
unflinching gaze. Meanwhile Dete had come up, with Peter after her.

"I wish you good-day, Uncle," said Dete, as she walked towards him,
"and I have brought you Tobias and Adelaide's child. You will hardly
recognize her, as you have never seen her since she was a year old."

"And what has the child to do with me up here?" asked the old man
curtly. "You there," he then called out to Peter, "be off with your
goats, you are none too early as it is, and take mine with you."

Peter obeyed on the instant and quickly disappeared.

"The child is here to remain with you," Dete made answer. "I have done
my duty by her for these four years, and now it is time for you to do

"That's it, is it?" said the old man, as he looked at her with a flash
in his eye. "And when the child begins to fret and whine after you,
what am I to do with her then?"

"That's your affair," retorted Dete. "If you cannot arrange to keep
her, do with her as you like. You will be answerable for the result if
harm happens to her, though you have hardly need to add to the burden
already on your conscience."

Now Dete was not quite easy in her own conscience about what she was
doing, and consequently was feeling hot and irritable, and said more
than she had intended. As she uttered her last words, Uncle rose from
his seat. He looked at her in a way that made her draw back a step or
two, then flinging out his arm, he said to her in a commanding voice:
"Be off with you this instant, and get back as quickly as you can to
the place whence you came, and do not let me see your face again in a

Dete did not wait to be told twice. "Good-bye to you then, and to you
too, Heidi," she called, as she turned quickly away and started to
descend the mountain at a running pace, which she did not slacken till
she found herself safely again at Doerfli.



As soon as Dete had disappeared the old man went back to his bench,
and there he remained seated, staring at the ground without uttering a
sound, while thick curls of smoke floated upward from his pipe. Heidi,
meanwhile, was enjoying herself in her new surroundings; she looked
about till she found a shed, built against the hut, where the goats
were kept; she peeped in, and saw it was empty. She continued her
search but presently came back to where her grandfather was sitting.
Seeing that he was in exactly the same position as when she left him,
she went and placed herself in front of the old man and said:

"I want to see what you have inside the house."

"Come then!" and the grandfather rose and went before her towards the

"Bring your bundle of clothes in with you," he bid her as she was

"I shan't want them any more," was her prompt answer.

The old man turned and looked searchingly at the child, whose dark eyes
were sparkling in delighted anticipation of what she was going to see
inside. "She is certainly not wanting in intelligence," he murmured to
himself. "And why shall you not want them any more?" he asked aloud.

"Because I want to go about like the goats with their thin light legs."

"Well, you can do so if you like," said her grandfather, "but bring the
things in, we must put them in the cupboard."

Heidi did as she was told. The old man now opened the door and Heidi
stepped inside after him; she found herself in a good-sized room,
which covered the whole ground floor of the hut. A table and a chair
were the only furniture; in one corner stood the grandfather's bed, in
another was the hearth with a large kettle hanging above it; and on the
further side was a large door in the wall - this was the cupboard. The
grandfather opened it; inside were his clothes. On a second shelf were
some plates and cups and glasses, and on a higher one still, a round
loaf, smoked meat, and cheese, for everything that Alm-Uncle needed
for his food and clothing was kept in this cupboard. Heidi thrust in
her bundle of clothes, as far back behind her grandfather's things as
possible, so that they might not easily be found again. She then looked
carefully round the room, and asked, "Where am I to sleep, Grandfather?"

"Wherever you like," he answered.

Heidi was delighted, and began at once to examine all the nooks and
corners to find out where it would be pleasantest to sleep. In the
corner near her grandfather's bed she saw a short ladder against the
wall; up she climbed and found herself in the hay-loft. There lay a
large heap of fresh, sweet-smelling hay, while through a round window
in the wall she could see right down the valley.

"I shall sleep up here, Grandfather," she called down to him, "it's
lovely, up here. Come up and see how lovely it is!"

"Oh, I know all about it," he called up in answer.

"I am getting the bed ready now," she called down again, as she went
busily to and fro at her work, "but I shall want you to bring me up a
sheet; you can't have a bed without a sheet; you want it to lie upon."

"All right," said the grandfather, and presently he went to the
cupboard, and after rummaging about inside for a few minutes he drew
out a long, coarse piece of stuff, which was all he had to do duty for
a sheet. He carried it up to the loft, where he found Heidi had already
made quite a nice bed. She had put an extra heap of hay at one end for
a pillow, and had so arranged it that, when in bed, she would be able
to see comfortably out through the round window.

"That is capital," said her grandfather; "now we must put on the sheet."

They spread it over the bed, and where it was too long or too broad,
Heidi quickly tucked it in under the hay. It looked as tidy and
comfortable a bed as you could wish for, and Heidi stood gazing
thoughtfully at her handiwork.

"We have forgotten something now, Grandfather," she said after a short

"What's that?" he asked.

"A coverlid; when you get into bed, you have to creep in between the
sheet and the coverlid."

"Oh, that's the way, is it? But suppose I have not got a coverlid?"
said the old man.

"Well, never mind, Grandfather," said Heidi in a consoling tone of
voice, "I can take some more hay to put over me," and she was turning
quickly to fetch another armful from the heap, when her grandfather
stopped her. "Wait a moment," he said, and he climbed down the ladder
again and went towards his bed. He returned to the loft with a large,
thick sack, made of flax, which he laid tidily over the bed.

"That is a splendid coverlid," said Heidi, "and the bed looks lovely
altogether! I wish it was night, so that I might get inside it at once."

"I think we had better go down and have something to eat first," said
the grandfather.

While the kettle was boiling the old man held a large piece of cheese
on a long iron fork over the fire, turning it round and round till it
was toasted a nice golden yellow color on each side. Heidi watched all
that was going on with eager curiosity. Suddenly some new idea seemed
to come into her head, for she turned and ran to the cupboard, and then
began going busily backwards and forwards. Presently the grandfather
got up and came to the table with a jug and the cheese, and there he
saw it already tidily laid with the round loaf and two plates and two
knives each in its right place.

"Ah, that's right," said the grandfather, "I am glad to see that you
have some ideas of your own," and as he spoke he laid the toasted
cheese on a layer of bread, "but there is still something missing."

Heidi looked at the jug that was steaming away invitingly, and ran
quickly back to the cupboard. At first she could only see a small bowl
left on the shelf, but she was not long in perplexity, for a moment
later she caught sight of two glasses further back, and without an
instant's loss of time she returned with these and the bowl and put

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