Графични страници
PDF файл

heat: the second was more warm- exercise, when he perceived his ly contested, and Blackbird was Black trainer take up the entered here the favorite, winning it by a horse's feet, one by one, and apply length. A third heat then became something to the inside of each. necessary, which proved very Alarmed at this, the Major went amusing to dingy beauties, all over to him, and said, “ What! is talking in a high key: it also the horse lame?"-"No, Massa.” created much interest in the aris- --" What are you then doing tocracy (such the Whites consi- to his feet?”-“Noting, Massa.” dered themselves) of the Island. The master, however, not saIn this heat there was hard run- tisfied with this answer, examined ning but no finessing, the riders them himself, and found the mark making the play all the way. ofa Cross deeply drawn with chalk The Garrison Officer's horse now on each.-"What does this mean?” pressed Blackbird, and displaced said he. The man hung his head, ihe Major's, all, however, very and hesitated, unwilling to give close to near the winning-post, an answer : when, however, he when the bit broke in Black- was hard pressed, he replied (with bird's mouth; but Blackey, crum- observations half full of faith and pled up like a squirrel, kept his half unworthy to be applied to so seat, and leaning forward made sacred a subject), “dat lucky a kind of coil with the bridle sign, Massa; dat keep him from round the horse's nose, and won all harm ; him never break down the race by a neck: the horse with dat, and no accident happen might be said, however, to have him : dat lucky sign, him sure to brought himself in*: so much for do well.” We leave the reader the courage and sagacity of this to make his own reflections on noble animal.

this occurrence, and take our The applause now

became leave of him and this ancient deafening, and Quashy declared, Jamaica race together. “I hab neber see anyting like dat:" whilst jet-black Airts, and AN IMPERIAL HUNTRESS. divers shades and gradations, I have already observed that from Afric's coast to the whitey- mighty hunters were generally brown complexion, familiarly ac- mighty men: the same may be costed each other. “How d'y do, said of women. It is pleasing to Ma'am?"_" Tank


see a well-mounted woman reindo yourself, Missey?"-" Good ing in her palfrey majestically : marning! how your pickaninny?” and riding Queens, both ancient

-“ Bless you, Ma'am, him die and modern, have all been great last night, heigh !"

Sovereigns. They raise our adIn the course of the second miration, command respect, and heat one of the outsiders broke animate their troops by their mere down, which reminds me of the appearance on a battle-field, at a great superstition of the Negroes review, or in the field for sports. The morning previous to the race, This was the case from the days Major M—'s horses were just of Queen Boadicea down to quitting the stable for their Queen Bess; and it rejoiceth us

* It is well known that horses will run a race without riders. Witness that of the Corso at Rome ; but we disapprove of the galling stimulus there applied.


that Her Most Gracious Majesty press was to be met frequently in is a horsewoman also. The different parts thereof in her French nation always regretted sporting attire, and with all the that Louis XVIII. could not be paraphernalia of the sports of the

on horseback, calculating field; or, to use the Great Bard's that he who has to manage the style, reins of Government ought, at “ Caparison'd, mounted for warrior-deed.” least, to know how to handle When last seen in this costume those of his horse-recollecting she was on a fine horse, which that Henri Quatre, and Louis she rode en cavalier*, disdaining le Grand, and Frederick the the side-saddle, and was flanked Great, not forgetting Alexander by servants on either hand bearof old, were all first-rate riders. ing fowling-pieces, and surA King cannot show himself to rounded by her dogs. Her hat his army and people without this, was richly surmounted by ostrich nor a Queen either: and here, feathers; her palefreniers were soit dit en passant, the Empress highly laced, but still the whole Marie Louise rode the high-horse turn-out was that of Imperial in great style, although Napoleon Majesty in cog. Her manners took her down upon one occasion wereaffable, and she saluted those when she was enciente and for passing with condescension, and bidden to take this exercise. strangers with an increased de

I shall not occupy my readers' gree thereof. In England, we time by a detail of the hunting are not accustomed to see Royalty, Ladies, the fine horsewomen, nor Nobility, or Fashion of the female the female charioteers of ancient sex dead-shots, break-neck riders, and modern date, (amongst which scientific sportswomen: a I never shall forget the impression dexterous lady-charioteer, or a made on me, in my boyish days, skilful female toxopholite, is the by Lady Archer in her high highest degree in our Sporting phaeton, rich enamelled com World. But they manage these plexion, and four fine greys,) but matters differently abroad, where, come direct to an Imperial Hun- close almost to the neighbouring tress, or rather a general sports- shore, I know a masculine old woman of the first calibre. Pre- lady who travels with such a viously to the return of Don caravan that one might think she Pedro from the Brazils, the Em. was prepared for the Deserts of


* This I have seen frequently in the olden times in remote parts of the Continent. The ladies who rode in this gentlemanlike manner were habited à l'Anglaise down to the waist-i. e. in the jacket of a riding-habit, but having very large loose trowsers for their lower garment, and sometimes all buttoned down the side like our overalls. The first saw drew from me an exclamation formed on a quotation from the Art of Poetry of my old friend Horace

“ Desinet in piscem mulier formosa superne :" for a queer fish the Lady seemed. In Italy the first British female who was seen on the side-saddle, the passers-by exclaimed, Pater de Bacco! ecco una donna a Cavallo con una gamba: “ By the power of Bacchus" (a substitute for an oath), “behold a Lady on horseback with one leg !" The Baronne de B R- was the most decided female cavalier I ever beheld, being worthy of the Amazons of old; but she had seen soine service (the Russian campaign); and a friend of mine, whenever she visited him in Paris, used to accost her with, " Baroness, will you have a little drop, or a cigar?” to which her general answer was, “Camarade, je preferre le petit verre.

Arabin--vlogs, horses, cart, arms, ance and dignified in her de. ammunition, &c. &c.

meanour. Sherode a fine English It is but justice here to add lunter, the native ones being very that the Empress is not thus : interior indeed*. she is all the Sovereign and all I am, Sir, yours, &c. the Lady, plea-ing in her appear



SIR, YOU are no doubt very well manner ; but in their flight they

aware that several animals exhibited a considerable display which are interesting objects to of whiteness beneath the wings, the sportsman are not so general with other appearances, which as to be met with in every part of immediately convinced me they the country, particularly those were not snipes. At all events birils of the migratory kind which they were strangers in these parts, afford good diversion in places and I resolved to become, if poswhere they are found. A woodl. sible, more intimately acquainted cock, for instance, is rarely seen with them. They did not fly to in the midland counties, including any great distance; and as I had even Leicestershire, where the not the least doubt that they woods are very extensive, and would visit the spot again in the where well-protected plashes and course of the day, I went home, springs frequently occur. Nor loaded my double fowling-piece, indeed are the migratory birds and returned to the place, where general upon the whole extent of I secreted myself as well as I our coast, as, while they are nu- could, determined to exhaust my merous in some parts, in others patience ere I gave up the hope of not one is to be seen; or, at least, possessing them. However, I had its appearance is regardled almost not waited more than about an as a phenomenon.

hour, when I observed the birds As I was taking a sauntering alight by the side of the fishwalk on Sunday morning the 4th pond ; and so eager was I to obof May, on approaching a small tain them, that I did not suffer fish pond fringed with sedges, myself to watch their motions for my attention was attracted by the many seconds, when I pulled the rising of two' birds, which ap- trigger and killed one; the other peared about the size of a snipe, took wing, but finding its compaand to fly somewhat in a similar nion did not follow, it wheeled

* The only good horses to be met with in the Brazils, unless imported from England, or of the Spanish breed, are the Buenos-Ayrean horses : they are both active and strong, and go a considerable way in a short gallop, or kind of hand-canter. There are some of them that carry Ladies like the old Lady's pad, in a kind of easy shuffle; others are broken to‘arch their knees preposterously, which is deemed showy: their best are but slow compared to ours; and their dogs are staunch, but slow. In fact these foreigners are quite astonished and out of breath to see our' high-travelled dogs beat a field or range a country. A sportsman may apply to all parts of the Old and New World what a female did to the Army of Occupation on its quitting France. She lit up a transparency, bearing these words-Plus je vois d'étrangers, plus j'aime mon pays.

[ocr errors]

about and again took its station the others are pale brown. The by the side of the fish-pond, but legs are of a greenish yellow, and at a much greater distance than the claws black. The female, before. I fired and wounded the which is called the reeve, is bird, but it nevertheless escaped. smaller than the male, of a light

On taking up the bird at which brown colour, and destitute of I had discharged the first barrel, the ruff on the neck. The male I felt a perfect conviction that it bird does not acquire his ruff till belonged to the tribe of sand- the second season, being till that pipers, and a little investigation time, in this respect, like the feproved it to be the rceve; its male: as he is also from the end companion, in all probability, the of June till the pairing season, ruff; but this I was unable to when Nature clothes him with ascertain, as the latter, though the ruff, and the red pimples woimded and unable to fly, ne break out on his face ; but, afvertheless ran away, and com ter the time of incubation the pletely eluded my search. long feathers fall off, and the

Ruffs and reeves (the first the caruncles shrink in under the male, the latter the female) are. skin, so as not to be discerned. birds of passage, and arrive in According to the accounts of the fens of Lincolnshire, the Isle those who have written on the of Ely, and the East Riding of subject, the ruffs are much more Yorkshire, in the spring, in great numerous than the reeves; and numbers. Pennant tells us, that that, on this account, severe conin the course of a single morning tests frequently ensue between there have been above six dozen the males. The ruff chooses a . caught in one net, and that a

stand on

some dry bank near a fowler has been known to catch plash of water, round which he between forty and fifty dozen in so often as to make a bare

circular path. The moment a feThe ruff is scarcely so large as male comes in sight, all the males the common snipe, with a bill within a certain distance comabout an inch long:

The face is mence a general battle, placing covered with yellow pimples, their bills to the ground, spreadand the back part of the head and ing their ruffs, and using the same neck are furnished with long fea- action as a cock; and this opporthers, standing out somewhat like tunity is seized by the fowlers, the ruff worn by our ancestors: who, in the confusion, catch them a few of these feathers stand up by means of nets in great nunover each


appear not bers.
unlike ears.

The colours of the These birds are sometimes kept ruff are in no two birds alike : in in a state of confinement, and fatgeneral they are brownish and tened for the table with bread and barred with black, though some milk, hemp-seed, and sometimes have been seen that were altoge- boiled wheat; but if expedition ther white. The lower parts of is required, sugar is added, which the belly and the tail coverts are in a fortnight makes them a lump white. The tail is longer than of fat. Great nicety is requisite in the snipe, having the four mid- to kill them in the highest state of dle feathers barred with black; perfection: if the precise period


one season.

be suffered to pass, the birds are to find two alike; but the great apt to fall away. The method of length of the feathers on the killing them is by cutting off the neck, from which they take their head with a pair of scissors, and name, at once distinguishes them the quantity of blood that issues, from all other birds. This tuft considering the size of the bird, and the feathers of the ruff are is very great. Like woodcocks, frequently of different colours in they are dressed with their intes. the same bird, while the ruff ittines; and, when killed at the self is of an infinite variety of critical time, epicures declare them dies. Latham observes, that " of to be the most delicious of all whatever hue the ruff may be, morsels.

the breast differs very little, and When in a state of confine the transverse markings on the ment, it seems each ruff takes its upper parts of its plumage somestand in the room in the same what correspond, the ground tint manner as it would in the open being mostly brown.” The tuft fen; if another invades its circle, in the male is not a warlike oran attack is made, a battle en- nament only, but is a sort of desues, and a whole room may be fensive armour, which wards off set into fierce contests by come the blows by the length, stiffness, pelling them to move their sta- and closeness of the feathers : tions. If the trough out of which they bristle in a threatening manthey feed be not sufficiently ner when the bird makes an atlarge so as to admit the birds tack, and their colours form the without touching each other, fierce chief distinction between the incontests immediately ensue; but dividuals. it is not requisite that each bird It is not known with certainty should have a separate trough, or where these birds pass the winthat they should be fed in the ter : they leave this country dark-notions which were for about Michaelmas. some time entertained respecting I am, Sir, these birds.

Your obedient servant, Ruffs assume such a variety of

J. P. colours that it is scarcely possible Markfield, May 13, 1832.


SIR, A01

UTHORS who have written ever burrowing Their imme

on the subject of Rabbits in- diate offspring (say these writers) form us that those which are are equally regardless of their bred up tame do not take the safety ; and it is not till after two trouble of digging a hole ; and or three generations, that these that when people, to produce a animals begin to find the neceswarren, stock it with tame rab- sity and convenience of an asybits, having been unaccustomed to lum, and practise an art which the art of scraping a hole, con- they could only learn from natinue exposed to the weather and ture. every other accident, without About twelve months since a

« ПредишнаНапред »