A Celebration of Women Writers

Pastime Pictures, A book of transformation scenes.
By and . London and New York: Ernest Nister; E. P. Dutton & Co., ca.1890.

The motto 'Pleasant Pastime Pictures' appears on a flag hanging from a trumpet. Below are a boy and a girl with a drum, preceded by dog standing on its hind legs and carrying a toy rifle

Pleasant Pastime Pictures:
A Book of Transformation Pictures

a group of children reading from a book

A book of Transformation Scenes
Turn the pages, little maiden,
  Read the verses, merry boy,
All your lives with flowers are laden,
  All your days are full of joy.
So, when through the book you wander,
  Think of those who've worked for you,
How they've had to plot and ponder,
  Words and pictures, pages through–
Not the first time or the last time–
Just to make a pretty pastime,
  Just to make a book for you.
F. E. Weatherly.
Printed in Bavaria.

A clown-like figure showing several sitting dogs an easel that says 'CAT'

Comical Pastime Pictures.

COMICAL Pastime Pictures
  Of fun and frolic full,
Each pretty picture turning
  To another when you pull.

The pussies at a party
  Will turn to an old maids' tea–
I hope they won't talk scandal
  Of you, my dears, or me.

Try it and see, my dearies,
  You'll find it as I've said,
Red Riding Hood in the forest
  Will turn to the Wolf in bed.

As you carefully pull each picture,
  And laugh at each glad rhyme,
You'll find that "Pastime Pictures"
  Will merrily pass the time!

To the fireworks at the Palace
  The Lord Mayor's Show will change,
And a Hatter will turn a Tailor–
  I think you'll say that's strange.

Clifton Bingham.

The dogs sit up when shown 'BONE' and cringe away from the instructor on seeing 'WHIP'


An illustrated letter 'T' and a child with a balloon

The Sights of London.

TOM came up from Blackberry Down
To see the sights of London Town;
The first he saw was the Lord Mayor's Show,
There's nothing like that at home, you know.

Carriages grand and horses fine,
And soldiers marching all in time;
Said Tom, as he looked at it in awe,
"It's the finest sight I ever saw!"

Then Tom to the Crystal Palace went,
And there a glorious day he spent;
He'd never seen such a wondrous sight,
And best of all, 'twas firework night.

Rockets went up as high as the sky.
And everyone cried out loud, "Oh my!"
And Tom went back to Blackberry Down
Wishing he lived in London Town.


A crowd watches an ornate carriage with footmen, drawn by horses

The Lord Mayor's Show is a daytime sight–
Now find one that looks the best at night!

Crowd watching a fire

letter 'O' with a girl's face; a basket

Red Riding Hood.

ONCE on a time Red Riding Hood
Was gathering flowers in Bluebell Wood,
The Wolf came by and said "Good Day"
To her in his politest way.

"Where are you going so fast?" said he.
"I'm going my Granny, sir, to see."
"May I come with you, little maid?"
"Oh no," said Riding Hood, afraid.

But when she came to Granny's cot,
Oh what a dreadful fright she got,
She found on the pillow of her bed,
Not Granny, but the Wolf, instead.

But Granny came in at the door
And beat the Wolf till he was sore;
He cried, while limping off in pain,
"I'll never play such tricks again!"

Wolf threatens red riding hood

Here's Red Riding Hood, and the Wolf close behind,
Now pull down the picture and see what you'll find.

Red riding hood sees the Wolf in bed wearing Granny's cap

baby chicks riding each other and sitting on a teeter-totter of branches

A Great Mistake.

BIDDY, I think you really make,
If you but knew, a great mistake.

You may be wise, you may be clever,
You'll never hatch that egg, no, never.

You'd better keep a closer guard
Over your chicks in our farmyard.

There's one of them who thought, worse luck,
That he was meant to be a duck.

He fancied, duck-like, he could swim,
Alas, the pond has swallowed him!

Another chick–it's really odd–
Is taking breakfast with a cod.

Well, that's, of course it's plain to you,
A very dangerous thing to do!

You'd better leave that egg alone,
And mind the chicks that are your own.

C. B.

A hatched egg with a chick in it, being served to a fish in a suit

This egg will never hatch–you'll find
The egg that Biddy hatched behind!

A hen sitting on a bottle

at the zoo: a man and a bear, a little girl and a monkey

At the Zoo.

WHICH did the children like the best
(One day there was a great contest)
Of all the animals at the Zoo,
From the Elephant to the Cockatoo?

The Brown Bear cried "I know 'tis me!"
(An ungrammatical bear was he)
"By the buns and the biscuits that I get,
I'm certain I am the greatest pet!"

"Indeed you're not," the Camel cried,
"They love upon my back to ride;
Although they may not give me buns,
I'm liked best by the little ones!"

The Elephants and the Monkeys too,
They all joined in the great to-do:
The Owl alone, like a clever bird,
Sat still and never said a word.

At last he spoke. "You're wrong," said he,
"Of course it's perfectly plain to see
The children like us all the best,
And no one better than the rest."

C. B.

children looking at a bear in a zoo enclosure

Bruin's very fond of buns,
Now find the Camel, little ones.

children riding on a camel

Letter H with a cat and a doll; a cat painting a dog


HAT, sir, yes, sir–look at that;
Just the thing, sir, for a cat
Who desires to always be
In the best Society!

"Mark my words, sir, people judge
Not by coats, no, that's all fudge;
People judge a well-dressed cat
By his hat, sir, by his hat!"

"Coat, sir, yes, sir–perfect fit,
Splendid coat–just look at it;
That's the coat, sir, for a swell
Up to date, and fits you well!

"Mark my words, I'm sure of it–
Hats, sir, do not count a bit,
People know a dog of note
By his coat, sir, by his coat!"

C. B.

A cat buying a top hat

They both went shopping, but please to note,
Tom bought a hat, and Toby a coat.

A dog buying a jacket

A dance card and a fan


THE pussies gave a dance last night;
They kept it up till morning light.

Miss Tabitha danced with young Tom Purr
A dozen times–quite wrong of her.

I also heard Miss Mew assert
That she was distinctly seen to flirt!

"Such doings are most scandalous,"
Say the three Misses Tortoiseshell, "to us!"

"We're really shocked," exclaim all three,
Chatting over a cup of tea!

"We're really glad we didn't go,
Oh, the guests there were behaving so!"

But I think they'd have been delighted–
The truth is–they were not invited.

C. B.

cats in fancy dress dancing

The ball was fine–everyone was delighted,
Except three Tabbies, who weren't invited.

three elderly cats in fancy dress sitting at a table

Cats pulling a punch and Judy in a cart, and upsetting it when they see a mouse

A Dreadful Accident.

Mr. Punch and his wife both wished to go out.
But they thought it was "low" to be walking about,
So they hired a Cat, in their lavish way,
To draw their cart, at sixpence a day.

Now a friend of the Cat came by and said:
"You harness me, and I'll draw them instead,"
But the moment the harness was fixed that Cat
Tore off at a gallop after a rat!

The traces broke, and the cart was spilled,
And poor Mr. Punch and his wife were killed,
But the Cat was punished, I'm glad to say,
And the rat, after all, got safely away.

About This Edition

This edition is dedicated to Agnes Kiley (later Heidt) who looked after her book so carefully as a child, that her great-grandchildren can read it now.

Illustrations may differ somewhat in size, coloration and placement from the originals.