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the pier being perpendicular, and the top terminating in a breadth of only two feet.
This mole or dyke is formed of wood and clay. The pieces of wood are laid lengthways, and are generally three or four inches in diameter, and five or six feet in length, according to the breadth of the dam, and are cut to the proper length with their teeth. These are driven into the ground with smaller and more pliant ones between; they then overlay the whole with a particular kind of clay, capable of resisting the effects of the water. This dyke they continue to raise in proportion to the elevation of the water, and the quantity they wish to confine. They carry all their materials by water, carrying the mortar or clay on their tails, and the stakes with their teeth, availing themselves of the current of the stream. Their work being thus far executed, they next proceed to construct their several habitations or apartments. These are divided into three stories, and are mostly oval: the first apartment, or lowermost one, is below the level of the causeway, and generally full of water. The next is for their habitation; and the third serves them for a retreat in case of an overflow, or an extraordinary rise of the water. These cottages are built in a firm substantial manner : and if any island be near their reservoir, they generally choose that to fix their mansion on; but if such a situation be not at hand, they fortify their habitation against the water, as well as wind, by driving piles into the ground, their mansion being in this case built on the edge of their reservoir. The walls are perpendicular, about two feet thick, and formed of the same materials as their dykes.
In the month of August or September the beavers, having completed their habitation, begin to lay in their stores. Before the winter commences, they indulge themselves in the richest fruits and plants the country produces; but in winter they are reduced to the wood of the birch, the plane tree, and that of other trees, for subsistence. The branches of these trees, which they use for food, are sometimes ten feet in length; these they steep in fresh water in order to soften them and bring them in a state fit for aliment. They steep certain quantities from time to time, proportioned to their regular consumption.
Nothing can exceed the order and address with which these stores are laid in. The larger branches are conveyed to their magazine or repository by the united labour of several beavers together; but the small branches are generally carried by one beaver; and to prevent one interrupting another in the work, each has a different walk assigned him. Their wood-yards, where this stock is laid up, is proportioned in size to the number of inhabitants to whom it belongs, and ten beavers, in the course of the winter, will consume above thirty feet in a square surface, and ten in depth of this article. These logs are laid across each other, in such a manner that any quantity may be taken without disturbing the rest. This timber is again cut into smaller parcels, and couveyed to one of their largest lodges, where the whole family meet, and receive their different allotments, which are shared out with the strictest equity and impartiality.
Beavers are generally found in most parts of the north of Europe, but are more numerous in North America. In Europe they may be met with from Lapland, to Languedoc in France. Their flesh, when dried in the smoke, is esteemed delicious
food; but their tails are mostly preferred. Their skins also form a very valuable article in commerce; and from the inguinal gland of the beaver is taken that valuable drug castoreum, so much preferred in hysteric complaints.
On Visiting an Infant School.
How sweet from infant lips
To hear the song of praise,
To the Author of their days.
The feelings of the soul,
Their Maker to extol.
Who might, like others, be
And nursed to misery;
From paths that lead to wo,
Are taught in grace to grow :
Be lasting on their mind,
Their future comfort find.Prain.
42. The Cameleopard. Sing'ular; remarkable. Remo'test; most distant. Distinct'; separate. Affin'ity ; relation. Resem'bles ; is like. Sheds ; casts off. Singular'ity; peculiarity. Consid'erably; much. Pos'ture; attitude, position. Awkward ; unseemly. Sufficient; enough. Perpendic'ular ; upright. Eleva'tion; height. Fatigued' ; wearied. Variegated; diversified. Obliged'; forced. Disposi'tion ; will, inclination. Perfectly; completely.
THE cameleopard is a singular animal, found in the remotest parts of Africa, and seems to belong to no known class of quadrupeds, but to form a distinct
of itself. It seems to partake of the nature of several different quadrupeds, particularly in the conformation of its body. In its slender form it bears some affinity to the deer or camel ; its head also resembles that of a deer; and has two short horns, about six inches long, which it sheds every year; its legs and feet also resemble those of a deer. Its neck is somewhat like that of a horse; but the greatest singularity of this animal is its form : the hinder legs being, unlike those of all other animals, considerably shorter than the fore legs: thus the animal, when in a standing posture, resembles a dog when sitting. The difference between the height of the fore and hinder part being nearly one half, gives the creature a very awkward appearance. Its height to the top of its head is nearly eighteen feet, which is almost double the height of any other animal known : the height of its shoulders from the ground is ten feet, and the length of its fore legs seven feet: a height sufficient to admit a man on horseback; while the length of the hind legs taken in perpendicular elevation is not near four feet. The head is nearly two feet in length. From this awkward shape it may naturally be concluded that this animal does not excel in swiftness; for though it appears to run fast, its motion is laborious and painful, whereby it is soon fatigued : for its running is a kind of gallop, moving its two legs on each side at the same time, instead of those of the opposite sides, as is done in other animals.
The colour of this creature is a beautiful brown, variegated with white spots. It lives entirely on vegetables, and when grazing, is obliged to spread its fore feet very wide, in order to enable it to reach its pasture. No animal is less furnished by nature with either weapons or disposition for hostile purposes than the cameleopard : its horns are blunt, and even knobbed at the ends, and its teeth and appetite are entirely unadapted for animal food, and in its disposition it is perfectly harmless and very timid, and always flies from the most insignificant enemy.--Dict. of Nat. Hist.
Say, who the various nations can declare
Those dip their crooked beak in kindred blood;
om all the sser tyrants of the air.