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pare by getting rid of all cumbrous articles of dress, and someo times a hundred or more horsemen appear ready for the chase and the slaughter. The plan of attack is generally by a “surround," as it is denominated, by which it is agreed that the hunters shall divide into two parties, and taking opposite directions, draw themselves gradually round the herd at a mile or two distant from it, forming a circle of horsemen at equal spaces apart, who, at a given signal, are all to close and attack the buffaloes.
When at length the animals "get the wind" of their pursuers, they rush in an immense black mass in one direction, and, being foiled in their intention to escape that way, they dash in another direction, and if stopped, they are in inextri+ cable confusion, the outside ones forcing their way towards the centre of the herd, while the inner ones are unable to move in any direction from the pressure received around. Meanwhile the hunters are dealing out their swift and deadly blows. The long lances and the deadly arrows are whizzing in all directions, and the infuriated animals sometimes dash at the assailants, and at one lunge gore a horse to death.
The most desperate resistance is sometimes made, and the maddened animals become most formidable opponents. The hunters have many narrow escapes, and it is only by a great combination of skill and muscular energy that they escape destruction. Many are dismounted, and only manage to get off by their superiority in running; or, being closely followed by the infuriated bull, the rider snatches a piece of a buffalo robe from his body, and throwing it over the eyes of his pursuer, leaps on one side, and sends an arrow into his heart. Having slain one, he chases another, and as he approaches him the deadly shaft is prepared, and in another instant it has passed with unerring aim into the body of the animal. Thus, in a short time hundreds become the prey of their less powerful, though more skilful opponents, and their carcasses lie in every direction on the enamelled ground.
Among the inhabitants of the North American prairie is the buffalo horse. It is a small but very powerful animal, with an exceedingly prominent eye, sharp nose, high nostril, small feet, and delicate leg, and having run wild they stock the plains for thousands of miles. In the same herd may be seen white, black, sorrel, grey, and cream colours, and their long and full manes hanging over their heads and faces,
When an Indian wishes to obtain a wild horse, he mounts one of the fleetest he possesses, and coiling his lasso on his arm, starts off in pursuit of a herd. When he has approached the band, and got sufficiently near the one he has chosen, he throws the lasso over the animal's neck. He instantly dismounts, and leaving his horse, runs as fast as he can, letting the line pass out carefully and gradually through his hands, until the prize falls for want of breath. As it lies helpless on the ground, his captor advances, keeping the lasso drawn tight, until he fastens the hobbles on his fore feet, and then putting a noose round his upper jaw, he allows him to breathe. The affrighted horse springs up, but is held in; his kicking and plunging are restrained by the noose ; and the Indian, having got hold of his head, places his hands over his eyes and breathes into his nostrils. He is now conquered and docile, the hobbles are removed, and he is led or ridden quietly into the encampment.
The antelopes of this country are remarkable for the agility and grace of their movements. They go together in flocks, examining every thing new, and, though very shy, their curiosity has often led them to destruction. Of this peculiarity the hunter takes advantage, for, fastening his ramrod in the ground with some attractive object on it, it is seen at some distance, and the herd soon approaches. Then lying down in the grass, the leaders advance to examine the intruder, upon which he takes aim so as to get two or three in a line, and pierces them all with one bullet.
Wolves roam in flocks about the prairie lands, following the buffalo herds, and devouring any that may lag behind from age or wounds. Though they are unable to contend with the bison, they so torment and weary him with continual attacks, that from weariness and loss of blood he falls a victim.
Among the animals found in the prairie is the prairie dog, commonly regarded and treated as a member of the canine race, instead of which it is a species of marmot. These creatures are remarkable for associating in great numbers, and forming subterranean villages, in which numbers of curious owls also take up their residence, neither party ap
3 The Marmot, belongs to the class of animals called Rodentia, (Lat.rodere, to gnaw) or gnawing animals, of which class squirrels, rats, and mice, are familiar examples. It bears resemblance both to the rat and bear, and is about sixteen inches long. It becomes torpid during winter, and when it retires to its little cell, it stops the en. trance to it, to protect
itself from the rigour of the season.
pearing to molest the other. The dog, or Louisiana marmot is found generally throughout the trans-Mississipian terri tories, as far as the Rocky Mountains. They frequently construct their mounds in such numbers as to occupy an are: of a square mile, or even more, consisting of burrows, the entrances to which are at the side, their height being about a foot from the ground. On the top of these little cones they frequently sit, on the approach of strangers escaping down the orifices, but soon their little heads will be seen protruding, to see if the intruder still appears. The passage descends vertically to the depth of a foot or two, and then branches off in an oblique direction for a considerable distance, leading to a chamber which forms the dormitory of the inmates. They are exceedingly playful, sporting about, and frequently uttering their short hurried bark, which may be imitated by pronouncing the syllable cheh, cheh, cheh, in rapid succession, by propelling the breath between the tip of the tongue and the roof of the mouth ; it is from this bark
. they derive their name.-Face of the Earth.
1. Give me some information about 12. How does the hunter take advanprairies, &c.
tage of this ? 2. What animal is called Buffulo in 13. What beasts of prey follow the America ?
buffalo herds? 3. In what ways are the herds of Bisons 14. How does the wolf overcome the valuable to the Indians ?
bison ? 4. How many hunters join in the chase 15. To what species of animal does the of these creatures ?
prairie dog belony? 5. What is generally the plan of attack? 16. What other creature resides unmo.
6. What follows when the animals "get lested in the Marmots' holes ? the wind" of their pursuers?
17. What space of country is sometimes 7. How does the dismounted hunter covered with their mounds? escape the maddened bull ?
18. How high are these little hillocks? 8. How many may thus be slain in a few 19. Where do they go when a strauge hours ?
comes near? 9. Describe fully the buffalo chase. 20. Do they remain long at the botto
10. How does the Indian catch the wild of their holes ? horse?
21. Describe their little dwelling? 11. What peculiar habits have the ante. 22. How are they generally employed : lopes ?
23. Whence derive they their name?
IV.-CURIOUS PARTICULARS ABOUT THE HORSE.
......ceděre. Sus-tain'ing, part.. ..tenēre. Ab'sti-nence, n. .........
..tenēre. Res'i-dence, no......... ..sedēre. Re-pos’ing, part.........poněre.
Hes'i-tat-ed, v...... .. haerěre.
...socius, Sur-viv'or, n...
vivěre. Do-mes'tic, adj. ......domus. Ab-hor'rence, n.......... horrēre,
l'he noblest conquest that man ever made over the brute creation was in taming the horse,' and engaging him in his service. He lessens the labour of man, adds to his pleasures, advances or flees, with ardour and swiftness, for attack or defence ; shares, with equal docility and cheerfulness, the fatigues of hunting and the dangers of war; and draws with appropriate strength, rapidity, or grace, the heavy ploughs and carts of the husbandman, the light vehicles of the rich, and the stately carriages of the great.
The horse is bred now in most parts of the world; those of Arabia, Turkey, and Persia are accounted better proportioned than many others; but the English race-horse may justly claim the precedence over all the European breed, and he is not inferior to the others in point of strength and beauty.
The beautiful horses produced in Arabia are in general of a brown colour ; their mane and tail very short, and the hair black and tufted. The Arabs, for the most part, use the mares in their ordinary excursions, experience having taught them that they are less vicious than the male, and are more capable of sustaining abstinence and fatigue.
As they have no other residence than a tent, this also serves for a stable, and the husband, the wife, the child, the mare, and the foal, lie down together indiscriminately; and the youngest branches of the family may be often seen embracing the neck, or reposing on the body of the mare, without any idea of fear or danger.
Of the remarkable attachment which the Arabs have for these animals, St. Pierre has given an affecting instance in bis Studies of Nature. s. The whole stock of a poor Arabian of the desert consisted of a beautiful mare ; this the French consul at Saide ? offered to purchase, with an intention to send her to Louis XIV.3 The Arab, pressed by want, hesi tated a long time, but at length consented, on condition of receiving a very considerable sum of money, which he
1. As to the native country of the horse,
Mr. Bell, in his history of British quadru. peds, speaks in the following terms :—"The long acknowledged superiority of the horses of Arabia is no proof that they were indigenous to that arid country in a wild state ; for there is great reason to conclude that it was only at a comparatively
late period that they were employed by that people. Solomon received treasures of vari. ous kinds from Arabia, but from Egypt only were his hurses brought. Egypt, then, most probably, is the native country of the horse."
: Saide, a iown in Syria, the Port of Damascus,-the ancient Sidon, which was next to Tyre in importance.
3 Louis XIV of France, miscalled the Great, was born 1638, and died 1715, aged 77 years. He was addicted to sensual pleasures, fond of war, and a violent persecutor of the Protestante,
named. The consul wrote to France for permission to close the bargain ; and having obtained it, sent the information to the Arab. The man, so indigent as to possess only a miserable covering for his body, arrived with his magnificent courser : he dismounted, and first looking at the gold, then steadfastly at his mare, heaved a sigh. • To whom is ' it,' exclaimed he, that I am going to yield thee up? To Europeans! who will tie thee close, who will beat thee, who will render thee miserable! Return with me, my beauty, my jewel! and rejoice the hearts of my children.' As he pronounced the last words, he sprung upon her back and was out of sight almost in a moment.
The intelligence of the horse is next to that of the elephant, and he obeys his rider with so much punctuality and understanding, that the native Americans, who had never seen a man on horseback, thought, at first, that the Spaniards were a kind of monstrous race, half men and half horses. The horse seems, indeed, to feel a delight in obeying man.
Were he not of a kind disposition, he might become a dangerous enemy. There are but few instances recorded of his resen. ting an injury. One of the most remarkable is the following. A baronet, who was in possession of a hunter which seemed untirable, resolved to try if he could not fatigue him completely. After a long chase, he dined, remounted, and rode him furiously among the hills, till the animal was so exhausted that he reached the stable with infinite difficulty. More humane than his worthless master, the groom shed tears to see the state of the animal. Shortly afterwards, on the baronet's entering the stable, the horse furiously sprang at him, and he would have perished had he not been rescued by the groom.
Horses are sociable animals. Many, though quiet in company, will not stay a minute in a field by themselves, but will break through the strongest fences to seek for company. “My neighbour's horse,” says Mr. White, “will not only not stay by himself abroad, but he will not bear to be left alone in a strange stable, without discovering the utmost impatience, and endeavouring to break the rack and manger with his fore feet. He has been known to leap out of a stable window, after company; and yet, in other respects, is remarkably quiet.”
An interesting story is told of affection in a horse. There were two Hanoverian horses, which had assisted in drawing