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Chinese arbor vitae. Thuja orientalis. Dedicated to St. Alice.
Srmnbrr list. Olympian A. D. 410. St. Begga, Abbess, A. D. 698.
(Oxford Term ends.)
By this time all good housewives, with an eye to Christmas, have laid in their stores for the coming festivities. Their mincemeat has been made long ago, and they begin to inquire, with some anxiety,. concerning the state of the poultry market, and especially the price of prime roasting beef.
"O the roast beef of old England,
Manner of Rootling Beef anciently.
A ccrrespondent, who was somewhat ruffled in the dog-days by suggestions for preventing hydrophobia, let his wrath go down before the dog-star; and in calm good nature he communicates a pleasant anecdote or two, which, at this time, may be deemed acceptable.
To the Editor of the Every-Day Book. Dear Sir,
As an owner of that useful class of animals, dogs, I could not but a little startle at the severity you cast on their owners in your " Sirius," or dog-star of July 3d. In enumerating their different qualities and prescribing substitutes, you forgot one of the most laborious employments formerly assigned to a species of dogs with long backs and short legs, called " Turnspits."
The mode of teaching them their business was more summary than humane: the dog was put in a wheel, and a burning coal with him; he could not stop without burning his legs, and so was kept upon the full gallop. These dogs ■were by no means fond of their profession; it was indeed hard work to run in a wheel for two or three hours, turning a piece of meat which was twice their own weight. As the season for roasting meat is fast approaching, perhaps you can find a corner in your Every-Day Book for the insertion of a most extraordinary circumstance, relative to these curs, which took place many years ago at Bath.
It is recorded, that a party of young wags hired the chairmen on Saturday night to steal all the turnspits in the town, and lock them up till the following evening. Accordingly on Sunday, when every body desires roast meat for dinner, all the cooks were to be seen in the streets,— "Pray have you seen our Chloe?" says one. "Why," replies the other, " I was coming to ask you if you had seen our Pompey;" up came a third while they were talking, to inquire for her Toby,— and there was no roast meat in Bath that day. It is recorded, also, of these dogs in this city, that one Sunday, when they had as usual followed their mistresses to church, the lesson for the day happened to be that chapter in Ezekiel, wherein the self-moving chariots are described. When first the word "wheel" was pronounced, all the curspiicked up their ears in alarm; at the second wheel they set up a doleful howl; and when the dreaded word was uttered a third time, every one of them scampered out of church, as fast as he could, with his tail between his legs.
Nov. 25, 1825. John Foster.
A real Every-day English Dialogue. (From the Examiner.)
A. (Advancing) "How d'ye do, Brooks?"
B. " Very well, thank'ee; how do you do?"
A. "Very well, thank'ee; is Mrs. Brooks well?"
B. "Very well, I'm much obliged t'ye. Mrs. Adams and the children are well, I hope?"
A. "Quite well, thank'ee."
B. "Rather pleasant weather to-day."
A. "Yes, but it was cold in the morning."
B. "Yes, but we must expect that at this time o'year."
(Another pause, — neckcloth twisted and switch twirled.)
A. "Seen Smith lately?"
B. >' No,—I can't say I have—but I have seen Thompson."
A. " Indeed—how is he?"
B. "Very well, thank'ee."
A. "I'm glad of it. — Well,—good morning."
B. "Good morning."
Here it is always observed that the speakers, having taken leave, walk faster than usual for some hundred yards.
To a sporting friend, the editor is indebted for the seasonable information in the accompanying letter, and the drawings of the present engravings.
Abbeville, Nov. 14, 1825.
It is of all things in the world the most unpleasant to write about nothing, when one knows a letter with something is expected. It is true I promised to look out for pious chantont, miraculous stories, and other whims and wonders of the French vulgar; and though I do not
send you a budget of these gallimaufry odds and ends, whereon I know you have set your heart, yet I hope you will believe that I thoroughly determined to keep my word. To be frank, I had no sooner landed, than desire came over me to reach my domicile at this place as fast as possible, and get at my old field-sports. I therefore posted hither without delay, and, having my gun once more in my hand, have been up every morning with the lark, lark shooting, and letting fly at all that flies—my conscience flying and flapping in my face at every recollecuoa of my engagement to you. I well remember your telling me I should forget you, and my answering, that it was " impossible" Birds were never more plentiful, and till a frost sets them off to a milder atmosphere, I cannot be olf for England. I am spell-bound to the fields and waters. Do not, however, be disheartened; I hope yet to do something handsome for your " hobby," but I have one of my own, and I must ride him while I can.
It strikes me, however, that I can communicate something in my way, that will interest some readers of the EveryDay Book, if you think proper to lay it before them.
Every labouring man in France has a right to sport, and keeps a gun. The consequence of this is, that from the middle of October, or the beginning of this month, vast quantities of wild-fowl are annually shot in and about the fens of Picardy, whither they resort principally in the night, to feed along the different ditches and small ponds, many of which are artificially contrived with one, two, and sometimes three little huts, according to the dimensions of the pond. These huts are so ingeniously manufactured, and so well adapted to the purpose, that I send you two drawings to convey an idea of their construction.
All wild-fowl are timorous, and easily deceived. The sportsman's huts, to the number of eight or ten, are placed in such a situation, that not until too late do the birds discover the deception, and the destruction which, under cover, the fowlers deal among them. To allure them from their heights, two or three tame ducks, properly secured to stones near the huts, keep up an incessant quacking during the greater part of the night. The huts are sufficiently large to admit two men and a dog; one man keeps watch -while his companion sleeps half the night, when, for the remainder, it becomes his turn to watch and relieve the other. They have blankets, a mattress, and suitable conveniences, for, passing night after night obscured in their artificial caverns, and exposed to unwholesome damps and fogs. The huts are formed in the following manner:—A piece of ground is raised sufficiently high to protect the fowler from the wet ground, upon which is placed the frame of the temporary edifice. This is mostly made of ozier, firmly interwoven, as in this sketch.
This frame is covered with dry reeds, and well plastered with mud or clay, to the thickness of about four inches, upon which is placed, very neatly, layers of turf, so that the whole, at a little distance, looks like a mound of verdant earth. Three holes, about four inches in diameter, for the men inside to see and fire through, are neatly cut; one is in the front, and one on each side. Very frequently there is a fourth at the top. This is for the purpose of firing from at the wild-fowl as they pass over. The fowlers, lying upon their backs, discharge guess shots at the birds, who are only heard by the noise of their wings in their flight. Fowlers, with quick ears, attain considerable expertness in this guess-firing.
The numbers that are shot in this way are incredible. They are usually therefore sold at a cheap rate. At forty sous a couple, 8rf. English) they are dear, but the price varies according to their condition.
In the larger drawing, I have given the appearance of the country and of the atmosphere at this season, and a duckshooter with his gun near his hut, on the look out for coming flocks; but I fear wood engraving, excellent as it is for most purposes, will fall very short of the capability of engraving on copper to convey a correct idea of the romantic effect of the commingling cloud, mist, and sunshine, I have endeavoured to represent in this delightful part of France. Such as it is, it is at your service to do with as you please.
For myself, though for the sake of variety, I have now and then crept into a fowler's hut, and shot in ambuscade, I prefer open warfare, and I assure you I have had capital sport. That you may be acquainted with some of these wildfowl, I will just mention the birds I have shot here within the last three weeks, beginning with the godwit; their names in French are from my recollection of Button.
The Godwit. Common Godwit, la grand barge. Red Godwit, la barge route. Cinereous Godwit, (BetuicA). Cambridge Godwit, (Latham). Green-shanked Godwit, la barge varie'e. Red-legged Godwit, le chevalier rouge. Redshank, le chevalier aux pied* rouges.
Common Sandpiper, la guignette.
Common, le heron hope.
Bittern, le butor.
Little Bittern, le blongoh.
The common Wild Duck, le canard tau
Gadwell, or Gray, le chipeau.
Widgeon, le canard tijfleur.
Pochard, penelope, le millovin,
Pintail, le canard a longue queue.
Golden-eye, le garrot.
Morillon, le morillon.
Tufted Duck, le petit morillon. (Britton.)
Gargany, la tarcelle.
Teal, la petite tarcelle.
If you were here you should have a "gentleman's recreation," of the most delightful kind. Your propensity to look for " old masters," would turn into looking out for prime birds. The spotted red shanks, or barkers, as they are sometimes called, would be fine fellows for you, who are fond of achieving difficulties. They come in small flocks, skimming about the different ponds into which they run to the height of the body, pick
ing up insects from the bottom, and looking as if they had no legs. TVj ue excessively wary, and above all, therji«i difficult to get near. Confound all" black letter" say I, if it keeps a man from suck delightful scenes as I have enjoyed ewrj hour since I came here; as to pictureloving—come and see their pictures which never tire by looking at. I like a good picture though myself, and shall pick cp some prints at Paris to put with ny others. You may be certain therefore of my collecting something for you, after the birds have left, especially wood cWJ. I shall accomplish what I can in the scrap and story-book way, which is not quite it my line, yet I think I know what j<w mean. In my next you shall bavesouthing about lark-shooting, which, in Eng- land, is nothing compared with what u< north of France affords.
I am, fee.
J. J. H.
White Cedar. Cupreu\u fiyoi&t
2Be ttmbt r 18.
Sti. Rnfut and Zosimut, A. B. 116- & Gatian, 1st. Bp. of Tours, 3d.Cea St. IVinebald, A. D. 760.
THE ASS AND THE CAMEL
Fault was found because a newspf*: commenced a police-office report of * of the humane endeavours of the W* hearted member for Galway, in behilfK the proverbially most patient ofallq'J*rupeds, by saying, " Mr. Martin am'-It this office with another ass." Ridinihowever, never injures a just ■!•*■ the just-minded; Mr. Martin has b» properly supported in every juditteffort by public opinion.
The notice or the all-enduring » in former pages, occasions » **' from a gentleman, (with his name) »** researches have been directed to the f-> graphical and natural history of fore? countries. In this communication ber-* fers to a work of considerable interest* relative to Africa, which it may be • portant for inquirers regarding the We rior of that region to be acquainted girl's
To the Editor of the Ei-cry-D*!fi<s|k Sir, [tfovrmbrr 29, IBS
The facetious Tm Tins, w I"0 Every-Day Book, of the 19th of September, (p. 1309.) cites the amusing and accurate Leo Africanus, as asserting "that asses may be taught to dance to music." This is an error. Leo, in his description of Africa, (Elzevir edition, 1632. p. 749.) says. "I saw in Cairo a camel dance to the sound of a drum, and as the master told me, this is the mode of teaching: a young camel is selected and placed for half an hour in a place prepared for him of about the size of a stove, the pavement of which is heated by fire. Some one then, outside the door, beats the drum, and the camel, not on account of the music, but of the fire by which his feet are hurt, lifts first one leg then another, after the manner of a dancer, and after having been thus trained for ten or twelve months, he is led into public, when, on hearing the drum, and remembering the burning of his feet, he immediately begins to jump, and thinking himself to be on the same floor, he raises himself on his hind legs, and appears to dance; and so, use becoming second nature, he continues to do."
The only ass described by Leo, is the ass of the woods, found only in the desert or its borders. It yields to the Barb, or Arabian, (Leo says they are the same,) in swiftness, and is caught with the greatest difficulty. When feeding, or drinking, he is always moving.
A word more about the camel. He is of a most kind and mild nature, and partakes in a manner of the sense of man. If, at any time, between Ethiopia and Barbary (in the great desert) the day's journey is longer than ordinary, he is not to be driven on by stripes (or beating,) but the driver sings certain short songs, by which the camel being allured, he goes on with such swiftness, that no one is able to keep up with him.
When'I open this highly valued book, I never know when to close it; and, indeed, the less at this time, when we are all on tip-toe with respect to Africa.
Now it does appear strange to me, that not one word has been said, either by the travellers, or those who have traced them, about this little work. One reason may be, that it has never* been wholly translated into English. It is called by Hartman, (who has been deemed the ablest editor of these oriental authors,) a golden book, which had he wanted, he should as frequently have wanted light. The author, who was a man of a noble
family and great acquirements, had been at Tombuto twice at least. Once he accompanied his father on his embassy from the king of Fez to that city, and afterwards as a merchant. This must have been at the very beginning of the sixteenth century, for he finished this work at Home, the 5th of March, 1526. He describes Tombuto, as well as Bornou, and Cano, and many other of the Negro kingdoms with great minuteness, and with respect to the Niger, (which, like the Nile, rises, falls, and fertilizes the country,) he says, that its course is from the kingdom of Tombuto towards the west as far as Ginea or Jinnea, and even Melli, which joins the ocean at the same place where the Niger empties itself into the sea. He also says, that at Cabra, which is situate on the Niger, about twelve miles from Tombuto , the merchants sailing to Ginea or Melli, go on board their vessels.
Moore, who resided as a writer and factor under the African company, at the mouth of the Gambia, about five years, and in 1728, published his travels, describing the several nations for the space of six hundred miles up that river, concludes that river and the Niger to be the same. In this work will be found an English translation from the Italian, of parts of Leo's work.
Jackson is a coxcomb, who copies without acknowledgment. He fancies the Niger runs backwards, and joins the Nile, after which they most fraternally run into the Mediterranean.
I am, &c.
New Holland Cyprus. Cuprestus A\utralit.
Dedicated to St. WinebaU.
St. Nametion, &c, A. D 250. St. 5amthanu, Abbess, A. n. 738.
By the contemplation of the " shining heavens" at this season, the mind is induced to the solemn thinking, beautifully imagined by the greatest and most wayward poet of our age.