Page:Collodi - The Story of a Puppet, translation Murray, 1892.djvu/153
ADVENTURES OF PINOCCHIO
his feet, which were of the hardest wood, to such purpose that he kept his enemies at a respectful distance. Wherever they touched they left a bruise by way of reminder.
The boys, becoming furious at not being able to measure themselves hand to hand with the puppet, had recourse to other weapons. Loosening their satchels they commenced throwing their school-books at him—grammars, dictionaries, spelling-books, geography books, and other scholastic works. But Pinocchio was quick and had sharp eyes, and always managed to duck in time, so that the books passed over his head and all fell into the sea.
Imagine the astonishment of the fish! Thinking that the books were something to eat they all arrived in shoals, but having tasted a page or two, or a frontispiece, they spat it quickly out and made a wry face that seemed to say: 'It isn't food for us; we are accustomed to something much better!'
The battle meantime had become fiercer than ever, when a big crab, who had come out of the water and had climbed slowly up on to the shore, called out in a hoarse voice that sounded like a trumpet with a bad cold:
'Have done with that, you young ruffians, for you are nothing else! These hand-to-