Have you ever met the Little Red Hen? Hers was the first story in the Ontario Primer, and it was printed not in the Latin alphabet, but in the debased calligraphy which was taught to children at that time, ruining their handwriting forever. Why it was thought that children could read this script more easily than print, I do not know. In the pictures illustrating the story, the Little Red Hen was larger than the cat, the dog, and the pig with whom she shared the farmyard. Much later in life, when I became interested in the ikons of the Orthodox church, I discovered the reasoning behind this apparent absurdity; the Little Red Hen was morally bigger than the cat, the dog, and the pig, so she was drawn larger, just as saints in ikons are drawn larger than pagans or people of mere ordinary virtue.
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