First Line Fridays #8 Special Christmas Edition: The Story of the Other Wise Man

It’s time for a new edition of First Line Fridays hosted by the Hoarding Books blog!


I have a little story behind my choice for this special Christmas edition of First Line Fridays….

I’m sharing the first line of The Story of the Other Wise Man by Henry van Dyke. This classic tale was referred to in a favorite TV movie of mine: “Signed, Sealed, Delivered for Christmas” as the story of the fourth wise man. When I was antique shopping earlier this year, I saw this little copy and realized it was the same story!!!! Though I haven’t read it through yet, I WILL before Christmas day comes. My little edition was printed in 1899! A little message is written in the front in pen “To Mama, from Bennie Bee. Christmas 1912”.


Who seeks for heaven alone to save his soul,
May keep the path, but will not reach the goal;
While he who walks in love may wander far,
Yet God will bring him where the blessed are.

First Line:

The Sign in the Sky

In the days when Augustus Caesar was master of many kings and Herod reigned in Jerusalem, there lived in the city of Ecbatana, among the mountains of Persia, a certain man named Artaban, the Median.

What is your favorite classic Christmas story?

Your turn! Find the book closest to you and share your first line in the comments! The, head over to Hoarding Books for the linky and visit other FLF posts!

9 thoughts on “First Line Fridays #8 Special Christmas Edition: The Story of the Other Wise Man

  1. Sorry about that first post. I meant to post this:

    Merry Christmas!

    Today on my blog I am featuring Desert Duet by Debra Marvin. I’m just beginning chapter 3, so I will leave the first line from that chapter.

    “The new gray fedora, with its crisp, black grosgrain band, would be a stylish, but dismal failure at preventing sunburn.”

    I’m really enjoying this story! Happy Friday. 😊

    • Merry Christmas to you!!!!! I’m happy to hear you’re enjoying that story — I snagged a copy not too long ago and hope to read it some time!

    • Thank you, I thought so! I always forget about Little Women when I think about Christmas stories!!! It IS a great classic (and I adore the movie from the 1990s). Thanks for sharing and Merry Christmas!

  2. Wow! That is so wonderful. I love even the sweet inscription you quoted there. That books sounds like a real treasure.

    I’m not sure my favorite classic Christmas story. There are so many out there that are worthy of mention. It is probably The Gift of the Magi..

    Merry Christmas!

    • It’s a little book I’m very happy to have!!!! Oooh, do you mean The Gift of the Magi by O. Henry? That’s a great story!

      Merry Christmas to you, too!

  3. I love old books, especially books with mysterious dedications …

    I think my favourite classic Christmas story is the gospel of Matthew. Or John. Or … I don’t really know any other classic Christmas stories, except for A Christmas Carol (which I’ve never read).

    I’m sharing from All is Bright by Andrea Grigg over on my blog, a wonderful novella set in Australia … which means a summer Christmas (FYI, that’s normal for me. Not so normal for most of you, or for my Icelandic pastor and his family.)

    I’m currently reading A Sweethaven Christmas by Courtney Walsh, an new favourite author. Here’s the first line:

    “Why is that woman staring over here?” Lila shifted in the tall-backed linen-covered chair and nodded towards a blonde woman at the bar.

    I suspect this is going to be more than a Christmas story …

    Blessings as you celebrate the birth of our Saviour this week!

  4. Pingback: December (& 2017) Happenings – The Green Mockingbird

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