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pair of tame rabbits were pre- frequently chased ; but, as they
sented to one of my sons, of that are always near a secure retreat,
particular kind distinguished by they easily escape their pursuers.
the appellation of the Angora rab- In fact, the distant approach of a
bit, milk white, and covered more strange dog alarms them, and
thickly with fur than the com they immediately retire, while
mon rabbit, which appears in they approach the kennels of my
knots all over the body, and own dogs with the utmost indiffer-
which I understand is peculiar to ence, and also occasionally enter
the kind which I have just men them, the old buck in particular,
tioned. It was not long before the which is bolder, as well as more
doe brought

forth six young ones; familiar, than the rest. When
and in a little more than a month first at liberty, they sought refuge
afterwards six or seven more; and, from danger in the hutch from
indeed, the increase was so rapid which they had escaped, a hole
that the hutch soon became too for their admission being made in
small for its inhabitants. It oc the door ; but a short period only
casionally happened that some of elapsed before they began to form
them made their way out of the other retreats, and burrow in the
hutch, which is situated in the ground, or at least in the banks
garden, but were easily secured of the garden hedge, where they
again, as they were remarkably have formed a number of secure
familiar: however, by some means retreats. Hence it is very clear
the door of the hutch was one that tame rabbits do not always
morning found wide open, and wait for two or three generations
its tenants dispersed in various before they betake themselves to
parts of the garden. From this burrowing. They are not con-
period they were allowed their fined to the garden; on the con-
liberty, and they very soon be trary, they extend their rambles
came conscious of this inestimable into the fields adjoining, and, I
blessing, by not suffering them am fearful, will shortly be tres-
selves to be taken. It is true passing on those of my neigh-
they are still familiar, inasmuch bours.
as they will suffer any one of the The old buck is easily distin-
family to approach very near to guishable from the rest by his su-
them, but not to touch them ; but perior size, as well as from the su-
what is more extraordinary, they perior brilliancy of his colour(they
testify not the least alarm at the are all perfectly white). They
approach of three pointers, which appear upon a little paddock ad-
are constantly about the house, joining the garden almost uni-
nor have the dogs ever manifested formly in the latter part of the
the least disposition to molest afternoon, and enliven the land-
them, once only excepted, as on scape by their beauty as well as
their first escape from the hutch by their frolics; and where my
one was killed by one of the dogs are frequentlymixed amongst
pointers, since which all has been them with the utmost familiarity.
harmony between my own dogs I admire them very much, Mr.
and the rabbits. The case is dif- Editor, but I am fearful of being
ferent with the dogs of my neigh- overstocked, and must adopt
bours, by whom the rabbits are some method of preventing that


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amazing increase which generally though I have very different feel, attends the protected rabbits; yet, ings when picking the bones of strange as it may appear, I feel a a chicken bred and reared on my degree of repugnance at the idea premises. of slaughtering these beautiful I am Sir, your constant reader, little creatures for my own table,



as that of the Game Act; for I of Burkers, Cholera, and ain an enthusiastic lover of the the various ills that flesh is heir gun; indeed, it is, of all the to, I am again in London on my pleasures of my youth, the only annual voyage of discovery, which one which has survived in all its generally lasts about six weeks, freshness—the only one which affording me ample opportunity has not lost its zest by frequent of seeing all that is worth seeing repetition. I still feel the same in the mighty Babel, and be delight on the approach of the heartily sick of it in the bargain. sporting season as I did when at I am a lover of Nature and pure the sanguine age of twenty-one, air, and therefore I live in the and find sufficient occupation for country; but I am also a lover of my solitary hours in the namethe noble horse, and nowhere less preparations which its apcan such fine specimens of that proach gives rise to. Can I then animal be seen as in London: so read this new Game Act, so cal“ Hither I come, I come from my pleasant culated to deprive me of this last home,

pleasure, with anything like paAnd if there's a good horse, a good horse tience? I have seen too much of

in London town, I swear, I swear, on the word of a Hunter. the world to be surprised or pain

ed at many things; but here I That horse it shall be in my stable right confess, like Achilles, I am vul

nerable. Now, this subject, I am This world, we are told, is continually revolving. God knows, verly discussed already in your

aware has been sensibly and clethe people in it contrive to keep entertaining Magazine; neverthemoving," and change-reform as less, as I am an old acquaintance, it is calledis the order of the I will claim the privilege of such day. Well, the Bill is settled at

acquaintance ; and as this mornlast. Thank God for that ; for ing, though in the month of June, now, I suppose, grumbling will is cold, wet, and windy, and nocease, tallow candles have

à thing to be seen in the streets but great sale, and the poor for once get a good dinner. Butallons, poli- stinking mackarel, I will take

amphibious fish-women bawling tics are not for sportsmen or

the liberty of scrawling a few of Sporting Magazines. Of all the changes which have Bill. It is a much easier thing,

my thoughts on this said Game taken place, I confess there is

aware, to write a cria none has given me so much pain fique than to write a book;



I am


much easier to blame another the price it will fetch or the good person's performance than to per- it will produce) for the benefits form one's self. The finest piece arising from it. In the first place, of eloquence ever breathed from then, shooting makes the country the lips of man may be turned endurable to many a man who into burlesque, or extolled into but for it would never be seen on sublimity, at the pleasure of him his estate ; it makes a rural life who thinks himself critic. delightful in the almost constant Knowing this, I shall deal gently occupation it affords; and diswith the subject in hand; not perses money into a thousand vainly supposing I am wiser than channels (thereby giving bread my betters, but on the principle to thousands), which otherwise, of a looker-on seeing more of the perhaps, would be lost at the game than the parties concerned. gaming-table, enriching a parcel I have calmly and dispassionately of wretches who deserve nothing considered the subject; and, but a halter. Secondly, it gives though I am convinced those who birth to friendships between man framed this law did it for the and man that cease but with exbest, and thought it good, I have istence. It is a bad thing for no hesitation in saying it is a society when people grow indecomplete failure. One would pendent of each other: man was think, indeed, it was enacted for not made to live alone, but to aid the especial protection and bene- and assist, to comfort and supfit of the poachers, for I see no port his fellow. The chain which other fruits likely to arise from binds us together is admirably it; and I have no doubt they and delicately formed, and easily laugh heartily at the triumph they broken: take away shooting, and, have gained over the sportsman. insignificant as it may appear to

I believe I may say, ever since those who have no other idea of this country was a country, sport- game than that of eating it, many ing in various ways, according to links of that chain will drop. the means and ideas of its pos I am a great advocate for the sessors, has been known and prac- strict preservation of game, feeltised. At the Conquest, amongst ing the prosperity of the country other salutary laws introduced, depends greatly on it. Sporting

one for the protection of in many cases is the sole tie game; but better, perhaps, had that binds men to this our island it been for the peace of the world home, and but for which they had it never been thought of; would desert it for the bright for, from that time to this, there skies and enchanting scenes of has been nothing but discord and beautiful Italy. What, I ask, vexation; the Bill for ever under- would be the consequence of going repairs, and each time re such desertion ? What makes turning from the hands of the a country powerful and a peamenders in a more dilapidated santry flourishing? Its Nobles' state than when it went.

presence, diffusing their wealth Let us first of all consider on the bosom whence they drew shooting abstractedly--not as a it. - What causes its decay ? mere amusement, but (as every- Their absence. Look at Ireland, thing is estimated according to read her history, read the crimes


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perpetrated by her sons; trace rope for ever dangling before thein to their origin, and you their eyes, rather than conform to will find the cause of all to be the rules of society, and work for absenteeism-that curse to a coun an honest livelihood. This should try, and one, if shooting is not be the end and aim of a Game encouraged, which will assuredly Act, instead of unjustly bearing prove the destruction of poor harder upon a body already England. Again, consider how taxed beyond endurance, and many families are supported in thus adding fuel to flame. comfort and comparative affluence But let us look at the Bill in by the manufacture of the gun; question, spreading over sheets look at the numbers of workinen of letter-press with its various employed by first-rate gunsmiths, clauses, and professing in its rawho are enabled by their weekly mifications as much judicial proearnings to keep their families tection as the far-famed Magna respectably without any other Charta ; but, in reality, as tyranhelp; and consider, when game nical in its substance as that was is defunct, what is to become of glorious and liberal. To partithem? Why, thousands of starv. cularise the many sections would ing wretches, unable to get a engross too much of your valulivelihood in any way—who able work; but I must, for the “ cannot dig, and are ashamed to sake of any who may not have beg”-will be thrown upon a seen this precious bit of law, give country already groaning under two clauses, from which they the weight of poor’s-rates and may judge for themselves whetaxes. It is frightful to think of ther it is likely to be beneficial the misery such an event would or otherwise. produce. It follows, therefore, as game has been recognised by And be it enacted, That in all cases where

Clause VII.-Landlords' Rights.the laws of the land as specific any person shall occupy any land under property, vested in certain indi- any lease or agreement made previously to viduals-whether wise, liberal, or

the passing of this Act, except in the cases

hereinafter next excepted, the lessor or just, it is not for me to deter- landlord shall have the right of entering mine-every precaution should upon such land, or of authorizing any be used to avert this dreaded obtained an annual game certificate to enevil ; every protection afforded ter upon such land, for the purpose of killsuch property. If the annihila, ing or taking the Game thereon ; and no tion of a set of worthless and de

person occupying any land under any lease

or agreement, either for life or for years, praved characters be desirable to made previously to the passing of this a country, it becomes the bounden Act, shall have the right to kill or take the

Game on such land, except where the duty of its rulers to frame such a right of killing the Game upon such land law, as, without injury to that has been expressly granted or allowed to most respectable body of men,

such person by such lease or agreement, or the yeomanry (who naturally feel renewal of such lease or agreement a line

except where upon the original granting or aggrieved at such feudal rights or fines shall have been taken, or except being exercised over lands culti- lease or agreement shall have been made vated by the sweat of their brow), for a term exceeding twenty-one years. shall at once exterminate those Clause XII. -Occupier liable to Pe. lawless characters, who brave nalty:-. And be it enacted, That where every danger, and live with the land is by this Act given to any lessor or

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landlord, in exclusion of the right of the He would make his people care-
occupier of such land, or where such ex-
clusive right hath been or shall be

ful not to destroy the embryo

specially reserved by or granted to, or doth brood, and closely watch the or shall belong to, the lessor, landlord,

or poacher, who, knowing there any person whatsoever other than the oc. cupier of such land, then and in every

was a watch set on his actions in such case, if the occupier of such land addition to his old enemy the shall pursue, kill, or take any Game upon such land, or shall give permission to any

keeper, would, of course, be other person so to do, without the autho.

slower in practising his evil deeds: rity of the lessor, landlord, or other person nor would servants (as is too having the right of killing the Game often the case at present) be sent upon such land, such occupier shall, on conviction thereof before iwo Justices of out on the sly by their very masthe peace, forfeit and pay for such pursuit ters to deal havoc on the game. Is such sum of money not exceeding two it not the height of injustice for a pounds, and for every head of Game so killed or taken such sum of money not ex

man to be prevented sharing in ceeding one pound, as to the convicting the game which is nourished and Justices shall seemi meet, together with protected on his own land, whilst the costs of the conviction.

a stranger, deputed by his landNow, I ever have, and still lord, marches over his grounds, maintain, that the parties to whom breaks down fences, slaughters these clauses refer (the Yeo- everything before him, and walks manry) are the

very ones

away, often without having the whom the preservation of game decency to present a feather to depend: but to deny them the the occupier? That this is never power of shooting over the very the case with a gentleman sportsland they cultivate, to tie them man I am aware ; but there are down to the extreme bounds of others, besides gentlemen, able to the law, is not the way to ensure pay for the right of shooting, and that protection, which, had they thus annoy a respectable farmer. an interest in the thing, they Besides, there are many to whom would so willingly accord, and shooting is a speculation instead which would certainly be so very of a sport, and to whom this new desirable. Allow the farmer to Game Bill is the most convenient shoot; or, if he have no inclina- thing in the world. Shame pretion that way, give him the pri- vented gentlemen dealing openly vilege of occasionally asking a in that way before, so it was mafriend; of course, under certain naged with the assistance of an restrictions. Should the tenant accommodating tailor or other be a sportsman, he might in the tradesman; but now the law sancearly part of the season slay a few tions it, and poachers and gentlepartridges or pheasants; but he

men may


soon finds the pleasures of the to market, and make the most
field are detrimental to the more of it.
important occupations of the farm; I come now to the worst part
so that he would seldom claim of this most wise enactment-the
his privilege. If permitted to ask sale of game; but as the clauses
a friend, the desire of shewing are long, and you have already.
that friend good sport on the given them in your Magazine, I
manor would be a sufficient sti- forbear quoting them, and shall
mulus to him to look out sharply only make a few observations,
for the preservation of the game. merely remarking it was thought


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