praise, beach, lesson
Story, Tale, Legend, Folktale, Myth,
Fable, Learning, Teaching
...the result was that Canute later that year (1016)
was crowned king of all England.
Canute the Great
on the beach
Great on the beach)
hundred years or more after the time of Alfred the Great there
was a king of England named Canute. King Canute was a Dane; but
the Danes were not so fierce and cruel then as they had been
when they were at war with King Alfred.
The great men and officers who were around King Canute were
always praising him. "You are the greatest man that ever lived,"
one would say. Then another would say, "O king! there can never
be another man so mighty as you." And another would say, "Great
Canute, there is nothing in the world that dares to disobey
you." The king was a man of sense, and he grew very tired of
hearing such foolish speeches.
One day he was by the seashore, and his officers were with him.
They were praising him, as they were in the habit of doing. He
thought that now he would teach them a lesson, and so he bade
them set his chair on the beach close by the edge of the water.
"Am I the greatest man in the world?" he asked.
"O king!" they cried, "there is no one so mighty as you."
"Do all things obey me?" he asked.
"There is nothing that dares to disobey you, O king!" they said.
"The world bows before you, and gives you honour."
"Will the sea obey me?" he asked; and he looked down at the
little waves which were lapping the sand at his feet.
The foolish officers were puzzled, but they did not dare to say
"Command it, O king! and it will obey," said one.
"Sea," cried Canute, "I command you to come no farther! Waves,
stop your rolling, and do not dare to touch my feet!"
But the tide came in, just as it always did. The water rose
higher and higher. It came up around the king's chair, and wet
not only his feet, but also his robe. His officers stood about
him, alarmed, and wondering whether he was not mad. Then Canute
took off his crown, and threw it down upon the sand.
shall never wear it again," he said. "And do you, my men, learn
a lesson from what you have seen. There is only one King who is
all-powerful; and it is he who rules the sea, and holds the
ocean in the hollow of his hand. It is he whom you ought to
praise and serve above all others."
1. Why did King Canute's
officers praise him all the time?
2. What lesson did
Canute teach his officers?
3. Do you admire
someone? And do you like being admired?
ESL, English, Story,
Tale, Legend, Folktale, Myth, Fable, Learning, Teaching