« ПредишнаНапред »
fields with some very big fences, time we found him. For five and a good wide brook. Our miles nothing could be finer : the fox took this very line, and they most splendid country you can ran at their very best pace conceive, with almost every destraight for Brixworth ; and up scription of fence-hedges, hedge to this point only three men were and ditch, rails and ditch, double with the hounds. Jack Stevens, rails and ditches, rail, hedge, and Mr. Viner, Major B-, and a ditch. Tim Shirley, just before groom, at first finding, went to we foumd, was asked how he felt? the left, while the greater portion He said, “Why, Sir, I have got of the field kept the right side of about twenty minutes left in me, the covert on the high ground; and that's all.” lle seemed a consequently, when he turned pretty good judge ; for at the end down wind to the left, these four of twenty minutes he was done, were let in, and no one else could and got into the first brook, fairly catch them till they checked where his nag lay with his head close to Brixworth, which was on the bank. Nír. Otway Cave twenty-five minutes. Here about also got a ducking at this place : ten or twelve more got up, and I saw him charge, but his horse they then crossed the road and would not have it ; he then put down into the valley, where a him at a fresh place, and bang most formidable brook was in the they went into the middle. Of line. In consequence of the rain all falls, there arenone so amusing during the week, all the brooks to a looker-on as those at water. were very full.
The hounds The pace they generally go at, checked for a moment, and I and the splash with which your heard many inquiries for the friend comes in, making the water ford. Many went up to it and Ay in all directions, and then the looked, but none fancied the miserable appearance he makes, muddy appearance. At this mo- standing on the bank trying to ment the hounds hit the scent get his horse out, always make again, and went up the opposite me (if I happen to be on the field, when Mr. Viner gallantly right side) laugh. charged and went right in, but A great many of the field were luckily contrived to scramble completely thrown out, and never out, and instantly went away got up till we reached Boughton alone with the hounds, no one -one, on a grey horse, I saw seeming disposed to get a similar spinning at a most tremendous soaking. Fortunately a farmer pace, just as we found, and he, I took us to a bridge about a quarter heard, got a fall when the hounds of a mile to the right, where we were at least three miles a-head, crossed, and caught them at the and never came up at all. wood close to Boughton, where Tuesday, 20th. --Met at Duston they checked for five minutes, -a small field, owing to Warwick and it seemed all up. We, how- races; the Squire not out, conever, hit him again, and carried sequently many despaired of it on through Boughton Park, much sport; for though Jack where we got among the fallows, Stevens is a capital whip, he does and could make nothing more of not understand hunting hounds. him--forty-five minutes from the However, this day they never re
quired assistance. They drew one was run in to and killed almost covert blank; went thence to a immediately, when she was found wood whose name I forget; to have only three legs, having found almost immediately, and been in a trap it is supposed. run him up and down for some Such a thing should not happen time, very unwilling to leave the in my coverts if I had any, or the covert, and it was anything but keepers should lose their places pleasant going up and down the if it did. rides, which were up to the The more I see of these hocks. At last he broke across hounds the more I admire the road, and two or three got them; they are quite perfect well away. We ran him over -such legs, and thighs, and three or four fields to a small sterns, and in such beautiful conplantation, but he was here head- dition : the only thing to object ed back, and went again to his to is, they are literally too fast. old home in the wood. How. No fox can stand before them ever, they stuck to him very with a good scent more than close, and, finding it was in thirty minutes. The consequence vain to remain, he again broke at is, that unless you get away close nearly the same place, and went to them, you have not a chance of away, leaving the plantation to seeing it: for to think of catching the left, down into the valley; them except at a check, is usethen turning to the right, went less. With most other hounds up full in the face of a strong you have some chance; but if wind, towards the gorse covert on they are one field a-head, you
ill; skirted it, leaving it on the will have to burst your nag nearly left, and then for about a mile to get up. and a half, ran parallel to the road at a capital pace: then I forgot to mention in my forturning to the right ran into the mer epistle the day we met at bottom, and went to ground in a Harrington-considered a good drain at a farm house, whence fixture. It is in the upper counthey bolted and killed him--an try, and a great many Meltonians uncommon pretty thing. From made a point of attending. Lord the wood to the drain was twenty Gardiner and Mr. Etherington minutes, without a check ; and had were among the number, and of it not been for the road, which he course on their best nags; and I kept to so long, not above half a anticipated some good fun. A dozen would have been with very hard-riding Cheshire man, them, but the M‘Adamites were named Brookshaw, was also out let in by this ill luck. I heard on a most superb grey horse, and Jack Stevens say, in answer to a number of strangers. Unfortusome one observation, of how nately, the Squire did not come; strange it was his facing such a and, after waiting for him till wind, “ Lord Sir, I don't think past twelve o'clock, we proceeded he knows where he is going to; to business. I immediately gave he must fly to beat them in this up all thoughts of much sport ; line.” We then went to Lord for without the master these Althorp's coverts, where we un hounds seldom get a run-his fortunately found a vixen, who science is wanted if any difficulty
occurs ; and we lost two good hounds. We had a good burst runs owing to Jack Stevens's for about fifteen minutes. About bad casting on this day. We the fourth fence was a brook with found in a wood about a mile very high and rotten banks. Just from the place of meeting, and as I was coming to it, a man had a pretty sharp skurry for passed me at a tremendous pace, eighteen minutes over a deep and put his horse at the place I country towards Lamport; but was going at. The horse refused, the scent was not good: ran but he spurred him, and he down into the bottom, where they jumped at it in a sloping dichecked; and, though Stevens rection, and went right in. They was up, and made a cast or two, parted company iminediately, and he could not hit it off. The truth the horse went foundering down was he did not cast forward over the stream. My friend made a brook, which was the line, one or two efforts to scramble but went first to the right and out, but the grass always gave then back to the left, leaving the way with his weight; and, findground beyond the brook untried; ing it in vain, he tried to foland we gave him up just as we were low his nag, clinging to the getting into a good country, being grass bank as he went along ; close to the ground chosen for but every now and then he came the steeple chase between Osbal- to a hole, and down he would go. deston and Ross some years ago. I suppose he had nearly twenty We then went to another covert yards to go in this way, somenot far from Harrington, with a times walking, sometimes swimvery formidable brook at the ming, before he could get out; bottom, which you generally cross. and though I lost a place looking It was the day after so much at him and two others who were snow, and it was a complete bum- also in, I was well repaid by the per; and, as we forded it to get amusement of seeing them in. I to the covert, looked anything got over a little lower down, and but pleasant. It is really quite caught the hounds at the check; absurd to see how most fields are but these Gents had quite enough stopped by water, and really at for the day. times by places which a person would think nothing of a jump But to return to Stevens : for a horse. Nor are they if a We now found a fox, and he horse goes freely at them ; but went out at the upper end, and, most horses are afraid of water, turning short to the left,led us right and half refuse, and, being forced down to the brook. There were by the rider, jump in a slanting three or four fences before we direction and go in; and one man got to it, and the hounds were in in, the next thinks he must fol the field where it was, when they low, and consequently looks out threw up. I was riding close to for a better place; and so you a Meltonian, and as we came over see them riding along the edge the last fence, I heard him extill some one gets over, when the claim, seeing the water, “ Now, others follow, or are led to a ford. then, the fun is going to begin,"
I saw a most amusing scene when, unluckily, they threw up. the other day with Mr. Drake's Stevens made a cast to the left, in
vain; they then crossed, and one the horse struck it a little below hound I thought spoke. There the knee, and over they both went was a ford close by, though up to together headlong. However, he your saddle Maps: however, we held the rein, and was got across by it, for to jump it mounted again. The next fence without hounds were running nothing particular, but a ditch towould be rash; and here again 'wards him: he went also smack Stevens blundered, for, instead of in at a tremendous pace. Howcasting forward to the hedgerow ever, the horse seemed a good where the hounds seemed to bend, deal frightened, and, as Y. said, and where they had crossed, he “ I thought he would not be such went to the right, leaving the a fool as to fall again, at least for field on the left untried, and some time;" so on they went. which a very capital master of The third place was into a muddy hounds and good sportsman af- lane: it had been broken down terwards told me he was sure was partly, but a ditch full of water the line of the fox, and at all on the farther side: at it he went events ought to have been tried at the usual pace—for the horse before he gave him up. I left would not go slowly-and, instead them after this ; but though they of jumping, he tried to gallop found again there was no sport. through it, and of course down I was rather amused at a short they came-the nig
into the dialogue between two very hard- ditch, and Y. about ten yards be. riding men this day on meeting. yond, whence he rose unhurt, One of them going up to the other, thanks to the quantity of soft mud;
“So the bay horse gave and after some little time, having you two falls yesterday I hear.” succeeded in getting his horse “ He never gave me a fall in his out, away they sailed again. The life,” replied the other, “but I next fence was nothing but a gap, have given him a good many.” He which he might have almost was riding this same horse one walked through, but he again got day with Sir Harry's hounds; I a fall. He then began to despair, believe it was the second time but kept along getting through a the horse had been out (a four- gate or two, till he came into a year-old). He had ridden him field where the Smite brook was. . the week before with Mr. Sa. There were five men in, and a ville's in a country without great many riding along the ditches to the fences, and the banks; Y. saw a man jump it, horse had jumped uncommonly and thinking, even if he did get well, so much so that he felt in, it would only wash some of the quite confident, and did not hesi. mud from the horse off, away he tate at any fence.
went as hard as he could, cramThe late Quorn met at Wid- ming both spurs
in as he came to merpool, and found instanter. My it, and, to his great surprise, the friend had a good start. The first horse jumped it splendidly. Ile fence there was a gap, with a got another fall before the day strong binder bent across. Mr.
was over, besides being on his · White was first over; then head two or three times, and the young one : at it he went at getting up again. However, he the rate of twenty miles an hour was very much disgusted with
Vol. Y.-SECOND SERIES.No. 25.
the nag, and did not fancy larking over fences, making them riding him again: but some time handy as he calls it, which conafter, at dinner one day, when sists in giving them falls over they were discussing the merits queer places; but he is about the of different horses, a man offered most reckless fellow I ever saw. to ride his horse against this same He bought a horse the beginning horse of my friend's two miles of this season near Melton, a across country, to take place in a notorious pulling brute, which week-of course calculating upon nobody would ride. He met a the number of falls the young man afterwards, who told him one would get, which would com what a brute he was, and that pensate for the greater speed. he would certainly break his neck The bet was accepted, and a rough if he rode him."--"Well,” says rider was instantly procured to R-it, “ I'll bet you six dozen of exercise the young horse daily. claret I'll break his neck before The horse was very violent, and he breaks mine-rather a queer directly he saw a fence a hundred sort of bet : however, it was acyards off, wouldrush right atit; but cepted. Herode the horse through this man, after the first fall, found the early part of the season, and out the secret, and holding the broke his neck the other day over horse till he came within a few a large fence with a good drop, yards of the fence, would then without being hurt the least himlet the reins quite loose, and the self. This same person did a very horse jumped beautifully, going bold thing when quartered at as clear as possible; and the man Hampton Court; he rode over one declared he never had met with day to head quarters (Hounslow) a young horse to equal him. He to dine, and his way lay over the rode him every day for a week, Heath. When he got to the high when my friend rode him the road, he found the gate fast-the match, winning easy, never making fence impracticable. You all a blunder the whole way; and he know the sort of gates generally is now a perfect hunter, provided on private grounds-higher than you
let his head loose as he comes a common five-barred, and painted to his fence. This shews what a blue, very stiff. He was in full hand is in some horses, but I do uniform, sword,&c. He was riding not like them so myself—but pre a horse he had never seen jump fer taking them hard held by the in his life ; but taking him back head-though I know many men about thirty yards, he sent him at who do.
it, and the horse cleared it galFalls are disagreeable things, lantly. He was so pleased, that and one or two in a day gene he rode him over the opposite rally disgust me a good deal; but gate, leading up to the barracks; some men seem to care nothing and coming home the same night, about them. I know a very hard he rode him back over the same rider, a Capt. R-tt, formerly in two. a Hussar Regiment, who I should But to hounds again. Saturthink gets more falls in a year day the 31st met Osbaldeston than any three men in England, at Kilsby, rather a select field; and yet is never hurt. When he drew a small plantation, about a is not hunting, he generally is mile from the village towards