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L. Frank Baum's Juvenile Speaker facts for kids

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L. Frank Baum's Juvenile Speaker
First edition
Author L. Frank Baum
Illustrator Maginel Wright Enright
John R. Neill
Country United States
Language English
Genre Poetry, Humor, Fantasy, Drama
Publisher Reilly & Britton
Publication date
Media type Print (hardcover)
Pages 196 pp.

L. Frank Baum's Juvenile Speaker: Readings and Recitations in Prose and Verse, Humorous and Otherwise is an anthology of literary works by L. Frank Baum, author of the Oz books. The book was first published in 1910, with illustrations by veteran Baum artists John R. Neill and Maginel Wright Enright; a subsequent 1912 edition was retitled Baum's Own Book for Children. The book constitutes a complex element in the Baum bibliography.

Baum intended the anthology for schools, to be used in instruction in public speaking. The collection includes versions of previously published material from Baum's Oz books, Father Goose, and other works, plus new selections like Prince Marvel, a short play for child actors based on The Enchanted Island of Yew.

One of the selections is "Little Bun Rabbit," the final piece in Baum's Mother Goose in Prose from 1897. The protagonist in Baum's version of the nursery rhyme is a little girl who can talk to animals – named Dorothy. When Baum reprinted in story in his Juvenile Speaker, he changed the character's name to Doris, to forestall confusion with Dorothy Gale from The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.

Baum made other revisions in his reprinted texts. One example: the 20th chapter in The Wonderful Wizard, "The Dainty China Country," was revised into a stand-alone tale, "In Chinaland;" and Baum removed the detail in which the Cowardly Lion accidentally destroys a small china church with his tail.


Materials from the Juvenile Speaker were republished in different volumes in later years. In 1916 and 1917, Baum's publisher Reilly & Britton issued stories from the anthology in six smaller 62-page books collectively called The Snuggle Tales, with black-and-white Neill illustrations. (They were originally sold for $0.40 each.) The publisher had used this approach successfully in the Little Wizard Stories of Oz in 1913–14, as a way of reaching beginning readers. The six Snuggle Tales books are:

  • Little Bun Rabbit and Other Stories (1916)
  • Once Upon a Time and Other Stories (1916)
  • The Yellow Hen and Other Stories (1916)
  • The Magic Cloak and Other Stories (1916)
  • The Gingerbread Man (1917)
  • Jack Pumpkinhead (1917).

In turn, The Snuggle Tales were later republished with added color plates as the Oz-Man Tales, issued in 1920.

To illustrate the type of materials involved, consider the contents of the fourth Snuggle Tales volume, The Magic Cloak and Other Stories:

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