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The Tin Woodman of Oz

12. Ozma and Dorothy
In her magnificent palace in the Emerald City, the beautiful girl Ruler of all the
wonderful Land of Oz sat in her dainty boudoir with her friend Princess Dorothy beside
her. Ozma was studying a roll of manuscript which she had taken from the Royal Library,
while Dorothy worked at her embroidery and at times stooped to pat a shaggy little black
dog that lay at her feet. The little dog's name was Toto, and he was Dorothy's faithful
companion.
To judge Ozma of Oz by the standards of our world, you would think her very young --
perhaps fourteen or fifteen years of age -- yet for years she had ruled the Land of Oz and
had never seemed a bit older. Dorothy appeared much younger than Ozma. She had been
a little girl when first she came to the Land of Oz, and she was a little girl still, and would
never seem to be a day older while she lived in this wonderful fairyland.
Oz was not always a fairyland, I am told. Once it was much like other lands, except it
was shut in by a dreadful desert of sandy wastes that lay all around it, thus preventing its
people from all contact with the rest of the world. Seeing this isolation, the fairy band of
Queen Lurline, passing over Oz while on a journey, enchanted the country and so made it
a Fairyland. And Queen Lurline left one of her fairies to rule this enchanted Land of Oz,
and then passed on and forgot all about it.
From that moment no one in Oz ever died. Those who were old remained old; those who
were young and strong did not change as years passed them by; the children remained
children always, and played and romped to their hearts' content, while all the babies lived
in their cradles and were tenderly cared for and never grew up. So people in Oz stopped
counting how old they were in years, for years made no difference in their appearance
and could not alter their station. They did not get sick, so there were no doctors among
them. Accidents might happen to some, on rare occasions, it is true, and while no one
could die naturally, as other people do, it was possible that one might be totally
destroyed. Such incidents, however, were very unusual, and so seldom was there
anything to worry over that the Oz people were as happy and contented as can be.
Another strange thing about this fairy Land of Oz was that whoever managed to enter it
from the outside world came under the magic spell of the place and did not change in
appearance as long as they lived there. So Dorothy, who now lived with Ozma, seemed
just the same sweet little girl she had been when first she came to this delightful
fairyland.
Perhaps all parts of Oz might not be called truly delightful, but it was surely delightful in
the neighborhood of the Emerald City, where Ozma reigned. Her loving influence was
felt for many miles around, but there were places in the mountains of the Gillikin
Country, and the forests of the Quadling Country, and perhaps in far-away parts of the
Munchkin and Winkie Countries, where the inhabitants were somewhat rude and
uncivilized and had not yet come under the spell of Ozma's wise and kindly rule. Also,
when Oz first became a fairyland, it harbored several witches and magicians and
 
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