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cock's hackle or tail. The sixth is the black-fly, in May also: the body made of black wool, and lapt about with the herle of a peacok's tail: the wings are made of the wings of a brown capon, with his blue feathers in his head. The SEVENTH is the sad yellow-fly in June: the body is made of black wool, with a yellow list on either side; and the wings taken off the wings of a buzzard, bound with black braked hemp. The EIGHTH is the moorish-fly; made, with the body of duskish wool; and the wings made of the blackish mail of the drake. The NINTH is the tawny-fly, good until the middle of June: the body made of tawny wool; the wings made contrary, one against the other, made of the whitish mail of the wild drake. The tenth is the wasp-fly in July; the body made of black wool, lapt about with yellow silk; the wings made of the feathers of the drake, or of the buzzard. The ELEVENTH is the shell-fly, good in midJuly: the body made of greenish wool, lapt about with the herle of a peacock's tail: and the wings made of the wings of the buzzard. The TWELFTH is the dark drake-fly, good in August: the body made with black wool, lapt about with black silk; his wings are made with the mail of the black drake, with a black head. Thus have you a jury of flies, likely to betray and condemn all the Trouts in the river.
I shall next give you some other directions for flyfishing, such as are given by Mr. Thomas Barker,' a
(1) It is supposed that the reader is by this time not wholly ignorant who this gentleman was, as mention is made of him in the Author's Life. We have already given the Dedication to his Art of Angling; and here now follow some extracts from that humourous piece itself. Addressing himself to the noble lord to whom his book is dedicated, he thus begins :
“ Under favour, I will compliment, and put a case to your honour. I met with a man; and upon our discourse he fell out with me, having a good weapon, but neither stomach nor skill: I say this man may come home by Weeping-cross; I will cause the clerk to toll his knell. It is the very like case to the gentleman angler, that goeth to the river for his pleasure. This angler nath veither judgment nor experience; he may come home lightly
gentleman that hath spent much time in fishing: but I shall do it with a little variation.
First, let your rod be light, and very gentle: I take
laden at his leisure." -"A man that goeth to the river for his pleasure, must understand, when he cometh there, to set forth his tackle. The first thing he must do, is to observe the wind and sun for DAY, the moon, the stars, and the wanes of the air for Night, to set forth his tackles for day or, night; and accordingly to go for his pleasure, and some profit." -“ Now I am determined to angle with ground-baits, and set my tackles to my rod, and go to my pleasure. I begin at the uppermost part of the stream, carrying my line with an upright hand, feeling my plummet running truly on the ground some ten inches from the hook, plumming my line according to the swiftness of the stream I angle in; for one plummet will not serve for all streams; for the true angling is, that the plummet run truly on the ground.”
My Lord sent to me, at sun-going-down, to provide him a good dish of Trouts against the next morning, by six o'clock. I went to the door to see how the wanes of the air were like to prove. I returned answer, that I doubted not, God willing, but to be provided at the time appointed. I went presently to the river, and it proved very dark: I threw out a line of three silks and three hairs twisted, for the uppermost part; and a line of two hairs and two silks twisted, for the lower part with a good large book. I baited my hook with two lob.worms, the four ends hanging as meet as I could guess them in the dark. I fell to angle. It proved very dark, so that I had good sport; angling with the lob-worms as I do with the flies, on the top of the water :You shall hear the fish rise at the top of the water ; then, you must loose a slack line down to the bottom, as nigh as you can guess; then hold your line straight, feeling the fish bite; give time, there is no doubt of losing the fish, for there is not one amongst twenty but doth gorge the bait: the least stroke you can strike fastens the hook, and makes the fish sure, letting the fish take a turn or two; you may take him up with your hands. The night began to alter and grow somewhat lighter; I took off the lobworms, and set to my rod a white palmer-fly made of a large hook; I had good sport for the time, until it grew lighter; so I took off the white palmer, and set to a red palmer, made of a large hook : I had good sport until it grew very light; then I took off the red palmer, and set to a black palwer; I had good sport, and made up the dish of fish. So I put up my tackles, and was with my lord at his time appointed for the service.
“ These three fies, with the help of the lob-worms, serve to angle all the year for the night; observing the times--as I have shewed you—in this nightwork; the white fly for darkness, the red fly in medio, and the black fly for lightness. This is the true experience for angling in the night; which is the surest angling of all, and killeth the greatest Trouts. Your lines may be strong, but must not be longer than your rod.
“ Now, having taken a good dish of Trouts, I presented them to my lord. He having provided good company, commanded me to turn cook, and dress them for dinner
“There comes an honest gentleman, a familiar friend, to me-he was an angler-begins to compliment with me, and asked me how I did? when I had been angling! and demanded, in discourse, what was the reason I did not relate in my book the dressing of his dish of fish, which he loved ? I pray you, Sir, what dish of Trouts was that ? He said, it was a dish of close-boiled Trouts, buttered with eggs. My answer was to him, that every scullion dresseth that dish against his will, because he cannot calvor them. I will
in short : Put your 'Trouts into the kettle when the kettle is set to the
the best to be of two pieces. And let not your line exceed (especially for three or four links next to the hook) I say, not exceed three or four hairs at the most; though you may fish a little stronger above, in the upper part of your line: but if you can attain to angle with one hair, you shall have more rises, and catch more fish. Now you must be sure not to cumber yourself with too long a line, as most do. And before you begin to angle, cast to have the wind on your back; and the sun, if it shines to be before you; and to fish down the stream; and carry the point or top of your rod downward, by which means the shadow of yourself, and rod too, will be the least offensive to the fish; for the sight of any shade amazes the fish, and spoils your sport, of which you must take great care.
In the middle of March, till which time a man should not in honesty catch a Trout; or in April, if the weather be dark or a little windy or cloudy; the best fishing is with the PALMER-WORM, of which I last spoke to you; but of these there be divers kinds, or at least of divers colours: these and the MAY-FLY are the ground of all fly-angling: which are to be thus made:
First, you must arm your hook with the line, in the inside of it: then take your scissars, and cut so much of a brown mallard's feather as, in your own reason, will make the wings of it, you having, withal, regard to the bigness or littleness of your hook: then lay the outmost part of your feather next to your hook; then the point of your feather next the shank of your hook, and, having so done, whip it three or four times about the hook with the same silk with which your hook was armed; and having
See page 86.
fire, and let them boil gently, as many cooks do; and they shall boil close enough ; which is a good dish, buttered with eggs, good for ploughmen, but not for the palate. Sir, I hope I have given you satisfaction.”
(1) For your Rod, and also for a Fly-line, take the directions contained in the Notes on Chap. XXI.
made the silk fast, take the hackle of a cock or capon's neck, or a plover's top, which is usually better: take off the one side of the feather, and then take the hackle, silk or crewel, gold or silver thread; make these fast at the bent of the hook, that is to say, below your arming; then you must take the hackle, the silver or gold thread, and work it up to the wings, shifting or still removing your finger as you turn the silk about the hook, and still looking, at every stop or turn, that your gold, or what materials soever you make your fly of, do lie right and neatly; and if
you find they do so, then when you have made the head, make all fast: and then work
to the head, and make that fast: and then, with a needle, or pin, divide the wing into two; and then, with the arming silk, whip it about cross-ways betwixt the wings: and then with your thumb you must turn the point of the feather towards the bent of the hook; and then work three or four times about the shank of the hook; and then view the proportion; and if all be neat, and to your liking, fasten.
I confess, no direction can be given to make a man of a dull capacity able to make a fly well: and yet I know this, with a little practice, will help an ingenious angler in a good degree. But to see a fly made by an artist in that kind, is the best teaching to make it. And, then, an ingenious angler may walk by the river, and mark what flies fall on the water that day; and catch one of them, if he sees the Trouts leap at a fly of that kind: and then having always hooks ready-hung with him, and having a bag also always with him, with bear's hair, or the hair of a brown or sad-coloured heifer, hackles of a cock or capon, several coloured silk and crewel to make the body of the fly, the feathers of a drake's head, black or brown sheep's wool, or hog's wool, or hair, thread of gold and of silver; silk of several colours, (especially
sad-coloured, to make the fly's head :) and there be also other coloured feathers, both of little birds and of speckled fowl:' I say, having those with him in a
(1) The Author not having particularly enumerated the Materials necessary for Fly-making, it will not be improper, once for all, to do it here. And, first, you must be provided with bear's hair of divers colours; as grey, dun, light and dark coloured, bright brown and that which shines ; also camel's hair, dark, light, and of a colour between both : badger's hair, or fur: spaniel's hair from behind the ear, light and dark brown, blackish, and black : hog's down, which may be had about Christmas, of butchers, or rather of those that make brawn; it should be plucked from under the throat, and other soft places of the hog; and must be of the following colours, viz. black, red, whitish, and sandy; and for other colours, you may get them dyed at a dyers: seal's fur is to be had at the trunk.makers; get this also dyed of the colours of cow's and calf's hair, in all the different shades, from the light to the darkest brown; you will then never need cow's or calf's hair, both which are harsh, and will never work kindly, por lie handsomely: get also mohairs, black, blue, purple, white, violet ; Isabella, which colour is described in a note on Cotton's Flies for March ; Philomot, from feuille mort, a dead leaf; yellow, and orange: camlets, both hair and worsted, blue, yellow, dun, light and dark brown, red, violet, purple, black, horse-flesh, pivk, and orange colours. Some recommend the hair of abortive colts and calves; but seal's fur, dyed as above, is much better.
A piece of an old Turkey carpet will furnish excellent dubbing : untwist the garn, and pick out the wool, carefully separating the different colours, and lay it by.
Some use for dubbing, barge-sail ; concerning which, the reader is to know, that the sails of West-country and other barges, when old, are usually converted into tilts, under which there is almost a continual smoak arising from the fire and the steam of the beef-kettle, which all sych barges carry, and which in time dyes the tilt of a fine brown; this would be excellent dubbing, but that the material of these sails is sheep's wool, which soaks in the water, and soon becomes very heavy : however, get of this as many different shades as you can: and have seal's fur and hog-wool dyed to match them; which, by reason they are more turgid, stiff, and light, and so float better, are, in most cases, to be preferred to worsted, crewels, and, indeed, to every other kind of wool : and observe, that the hog.wool is best for large, and the seal's fur for small fies.
Get also furs of the following animals, viz. the squirrel, particularly froin his tail ; fox-cub, from the tail, where it is downy and of an ash.colour; an old fox; an old otter; otter.cub; badger; fulimart, or filmert; a hare, from the neck, where it is of the colour of withered fern; and, above all, the yellow fur of the martern, from off the gills or spots under the jaws. All these, and almost every other kind of fur, are easily got at the furrier's.
Hackles are a very important article in fly-making: they are the long slender feathers that hang from the head of a cock down his neck; there may also be fine ones got from near his tail; be careful that they are not too rank, which they are when the fibres are mure than half an inch long, and for some purposes these are much too big: be provided with these of the following colours, viz. red, dun, yellowish, white, orange, and perfect black; and whenever you meet, alive or dead, with the cock of the game breed, whose hackle is of a strong brownred, never fail to buy him: but observe, that the feathers of a cock chicken, be they ever so fine for shape and colour, are good for little ; for they are too downy and weak to stand erect after they are once wet, and so are those of the
Feathers are absolutely necessary for the wings and other parts of fies: get