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The Bad Man

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"The Bad Man" is a short story by L. Frank Baum, first published in the February 1901 issue of The Home Magazine, and reprinted in The Baum Bugle in 1968. It has sometimes been acclaimed as among the best of Baum's short works.

The narrator is pleased to have a day to himself, and plans to spend his time reading the works of Ralph Waldo Emerson. But his wife leaves him in charge of their three children. His son Charlie almost chokes on a shell from his father's collection. Mabelle wants her father to play a game, while Kitty wants him to read them a fairy tale. Kitty gets back at her unresponsive parent by telling her brother and sister a story about a Bad Man who needs to be kept in a cage until he is sorry.

In its original printing in The Home Magazine, "The Bad Man" was illustrated by Fanny Y. Cory, who also illustrated The Master Key and The Enchanted Island of Yew.

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