There were once two very beautiful cats named Tomasso and Lilia.
It would be very hard indeed to say which was more beautiful than
the other, Tomasso the husband, or Lilia his wife.
They were about the same size, although, perhaps, Tomasso was a
little the stouter of the two. There could be no question that at
times the expression of his face was decidedly more fierce than
that of his gentle wife.
The fur of each of them was as white as the driven snow, and as
soft, and fine, and glossy as the most perfect silk gloss.
Add to these natural charms the fact that they always kept
themselves beautifully clean, and always wore round their necks
cravats made of the richest satin ribbon, and I am sure you will
agree with me in thinking that they were cats of very high
Their neighbors considered them extremely proud and haughty. They
never were known to play with any of the cats in their street. To
be with each other was all they asked. Sometimes these neighbors
took a great deal of pains to get a glimpse of Tomasso and Lilia
as, paw in paw, they danced a minuet together.
Even the most grumpy grimalkin declared it was a beautiful sight.
There was no doubt the young couple was very graceful and their
manners were perfect. Then he said that cats brought up as
Tomasso and his wife had always lived, OUGHT to be amiable and
beautiful. He understood that a jar of Orange County cream was
ordered for them every day. Then he muttered something which
sounded very much as if he thought Tomasso would be not over
courageous in a moment of danger. "Alone, white tail is all very
fine," said he, "but mark my word, at a sudden fright it would
turn into a white feather. I should pity his wife if she had no
one but him to protect her."
Now it happened that that very afternoon Tomasso's courage was
put to the test. As he and Lilia were taking a quiet walk,
suddenly a huge dog rushed out at them. In an instant Tomasso
placed himself across Lilia's trembling body. She had fallen to
the ground in terror. The great dog made a jump at Tomasso, but
was met with such a snarl, and then such a blow from a set of
sharp claws that he ran away howling.
That night the news of Tomasso's bravery spread through the whole
neighborhood. But he was very quiet and modest. His proud wife
was much disturbed at a bad scratch Tomasso had received in the
struggle. They both examined it carefully with the aid of a
"I hope it will not leave a scar," said Lilia, "but if it
will only be a proof of the noble courage of my brave Tomasso."
Room | Cinderella