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Title: A Hundred Anecdotes of Animals
Author: Billinghurst, Percy J.
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "A Hundred Anecdotes of Animals" ***

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Transcriber's Note: One instance of each orang-otang and ourang-outang,
left as in original text.


       *       *       *       *       *


              A HUNDRED ANECDOTES
                      OF
                    ANIMALS
                WITH PICTURES BY
             PERCY J. BILLINGHURST


       *       *       *       *       *


                   A HUNDRED
              ANECDOTES OF ANIMALS

                 [Illustration]


       *       *       *       *       *


              A HUNDRED ANECDOTES
                      OF
                    ANIMALS
                WITH PICTURES BY
             PERCY J. BILLINGHURST

                   JOHN LANE
                THE BODLEY HEAD
                    LONDON
                 AND NEW YORK
                     1901.


       *       *       *       *       *


       Printed by BALLANTYNE, HANSON & CO.
            At the Ballantyne Press


       *       *       *       *       *


 CONTENTS.

                                            Page
 A

 _Are Beasts mere Machines?_                  76
 _Ass Cast Away, An_                         196
 _Assisting the Aged_                        144

 B

 _Bear and Child, The_                        48
 _Bear Cubs, The_                            184
 _Broken Heart, The_                          62

 C

 _Calculating Crow, A_                        56
 _Canine Sheep-Stealer, A_                    38
 _Canine Smugglers_                           36
 _Carrier's Dog, A_                          170
 _Cat and Crows, The_                         26
 _Catcher Caught, The_                       188
 _Charitable Canary, A_                      166
 _Child Saved, A_                            200
 _Choice Retaliation, A_                      82
 _Comedy of Quadrupeds, A_                    64
 _Concerts of Animals_                        90
 _Conversing Parrot, A_                       20
 _Crab Fishing_                              152
 _Cunning as a Fox_                           66

 D

 _Death of Antiochus Revenged, The_           52
 _Deceiving the Fowler_                      190
 _Dinner Bell, The_                           30
 _Division of Labour_                        150
 _Dog and Goose, The_                         40
 _Dog of Montargis, The_                      46
 _Dolphin, The_                               50
 _Domesticated Seal, A_                      122
 _Drawing Water_                              60

 E

 _Elephant Rope Dancing_                      70
 _Escape of Jengis Khan_                     176

 F

 _Faithful Companion, A_                       8
 _False Alarm, A_                             10
 _Filial Duty_                                28
 _Foraging_                                  132
 _Fox Chasing_                               174

 G

 _Generous Revenge, A_                        74
 _Goat, The_                                  86
 _Going to Market_                           134
 _Good Finder, A_                            106
 _Grateful Lioness, A_                       104
 _Grateful Return, A_                        142

 H

 _Heroism of a Hen, The_                      24
 _Honours Paid to Living and Departed Worth_ 198
 _Horse and Greyhound, The_                   84
 _Humane Society_                            172

 I

 _Immovable Fidelity_                        138
 _Infant Fascination_                        120

 L

 _Lion and his Keeper, The_                  136
 _Long Lost Found Again_                      78

 M

 _Making Sure_                                16
 _Maternal Affection_                        116
 _Mice as Navigators_                         54
 _Mimic_                                      22
 _Monkey versus Snake_                       160
 _More Faithful than Favoured_                68
 _Mother Watching her Young, A_               88
 _Musical Mice_                              162
 _Musical Seals_                             108

 N

 _Newfoundland Dog, The_                       4
 _Newsman Extraordinary, A_                  182
 _Noble Perseverance_                        186

 O

 _Odd Fraternity_                             34
 _Of Two Evils Choosing the Least_           156
 _Old Habits_                                192
 _Ostrich Riding_                             80
 _Oyster Opening_                            146

 P

 _Philosophic Cat, A_                        194
 _Pig Pointer, The_                          118
 _Porus Saved by his Elephant_                58
 _Power of Music, The_                        18
 _Providential Safe Conduct, A_               72
 _Pugnacity_                                 168

 R

 _Rare Honesty_                              154
 _Refugee Squirrel, A_                       178
 _Remorse_                                     2
 _Retaliation_                               180
 _Retribution_                               124
 _Rights of Hospitality, The_                102

 S

 _Sabinus and his Dog_                        42
 _Sagacious Bruin_                            12
 _Sense of Ridicule, A_                      112
 _Shepherd's Dog, The_                       130
 _Shrewd Guesser, A_                          96
 _Singular Foster-Mother, A_                 128
 _Singular Interposition, A_                  32
 _Sly Couple, A_                             110
 _Snake Destroyers_                          158
 _Soliciting Succour_                        164
 _Sonnini and his Cat_                       148
 _Strange Mouser, A_                          14
 _Strange Rooks_                             126
 _Studying_                                    6

 T

 _Tame Colony, A_                             98
 _Tame Hares_                                140
 _Tame Sea-gull, The_                        114
 _Travellers_                                 92

 U

 _Usurper Punished, An_                      100

 W

 _Watch Dog, The_                             94
 _Wrens Learning to Sing_                     44


       *       *       *       *       *


                   A HUNDRED
              ANECDOTES OF ANIMALS


       *       *       *       *       *


ANECDOTE I.

Remorse.


An elephant, from some motive of revenge, killed his _cornack_, or
conductor. The man's wife, who beheld the dreadful scene, took her two
children, and threw them at the feet of the enraged animal, saying, "Since
you have slain my husband, take my life also, as well as that of my
children." The elephant instantly stopped, relented, and as if stung with
remorse, took up the eldest boy with his trunk, placed him on its neck,
adopted him for his _cornack_, and would never afterwards allow any other
person to mount it.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE II.

The Newfoundland Dog.


One of the magistrates in Harbour Grace, in Newfoundland, had an old dog
of the regular web-footed species peculiar to that island, who was in the
habit of carrying a lantern before his master at night, as steadily as the
most attentive servant could do, stopping short when his master made a
stop, and proceeding when he saw him disposed to follow. If his master was
absent from home, on the lantern being fixed to his mouth, and the command
given, "Go fetch thy master," he would immediately set off and proceed
directly to the town, which lay at the distance of more than a mile from
the place of his master's residence: he would then stop at the door of
every house which he knew his master was in the habit of frequenting, and
laying down his lantern, growl and strike the door, making all the noise
in his power until it was opened; if his master was not there, he would
proceed farther in the same manner, until he had found him. If he had
accompanied him only once into a house, this was sufficient to induce him
to take that house in his round.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE III.

Studying.


A magpie, belonging to a barber at Rome, could imitate to a nicety almost
every word it heard. Some trumpets happened one day to be sounded before
the shop, and for a day or two afterwards the magpie was quite mute, and
seemed pensive and melancholy. All who knew it were greatly surprised at
its silence; and it was supposed that the sound of the trumpets had so
stunned it, as to deprive it at once of both voice and hearing. It soon
appeared, however, that this was far from being the case; for the bird had
been all the time occupied in profound meditation, studying how to imitate
the sound of the trumpets; and when at last master of it, the magpie, to
the astonishment of all its friends, suddenly broke its long silence, by a
perfect imitation of the flourish of trumpets it had heard; observing with
the greatest exactness all the repetitions, stops, and changes. The
acquisition of this lesson had, however, exhausted the whole of the
magpie's stock of intellect; for it made it forget everything it had
learned before.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE IV.

A Faithful Companion.


A gardener, in removing some rubbish, discovered two ground toads of an
uncommon size, weighing no less than seven pounds. On finding them, he was
surprised to see that one of them got upon the back of the other, and both
proceeded to move slowly on the ground towards a place of retreat; upon
further examination he found that the one on the back of the other had
received a severe contusion from his spade, and was rendered unable to get
away, without the assistance of its companion!

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE V.

A False Alarm.


Some years ago, a soldier doing duty at the castle of Cape Town, kept a
tame baboon for his amusement. One evening it broke its chains unknown to
him. In the night, climbing up into the belfry, it began to play with, and
ring the bell. Immediately the whole place was in an uproar; some great
danger was apprehended. Many thought that the castle was on fire; others,
that an enemy had entered the bay, and the soldiers began actually to turn
out, when it was discovered that the baboon had occasioned the
disturbance. On the following morning a court-martial was held, when Cape
justice dictated, that whereas the baboon had unnecessarily put the castle
into alarm, the master should receive fifty lashes; the soldier, however,
found means to evade the punishment.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE VI.

Sagacious Bruin.


The captain of a Greenland whaler being anxious to procure a bear, without
wounding the skin, made trial of the stratagem of laying the noose of a
rope in the snow, and placing a piece of meat within it. A bear ranging
the neighbouring ice was soon enticed to the spot by the smell of the
dainty morsel. He perceived the bait, approached, and seized it in his
mouth; but his foot at the same time, by a jerk of the rope, being
entangled in the noose, he pushed it off with his paw, and deliberately
retired. After having eaten the piece he had carried away with him, he
returned. The noose, with another piece of meat, being replaced, he pushed
the rope aside, and again walked triumphantly off with his capture. A
third time the noose was laid; but excited to caution by the evident
observations of the bear, the sailors buried the rope beneath the snow,
and laid the bait in a deep hole dug in the centre. The bear once more
approached, and the sailors were assured of their success. But bruin, more
sagacious than they expected, after snuffing about the place for a few
moments, scraped the snow away with his paw, threw the rope aside, and
again escaped unhurt with his prize.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE VII.

A Strange Mouser.


A gentleman once had in his possession a hen, which answered the purpose
of a cat in destroying mice. She was constantly seen watching close to a
corn rick, and the moment a mouse appeared, she seized it in her beak, and
carried it to a meadow adjoining, where she would play with it like a
young cat for some time, and then kill it. She has been known to catch
four or five mice a day in this manner.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE VIII.

Making Sure.


During the war between Augustus Cæsar and Marc Antony, when all the world
stood wondering and uncertain which way Fortune would incline herself, a
poor man at Rome, in order to be prepared for making, in either event, a
bold hit for his own advancement, had recourse to the following ingenious
expedient. He applied himself to the training of two crows with such
diligence, that he brought them the length of pronouncing with great
distinctness, the one a salutation to Cæsar, and the other a salutation to
Antony. When Augustus returned conqueror, the man went out to meet him
with the crow suited to the occasion perched on his fist, and every now
and then it kept exclaiming, "_Salve, Cæsar, Victor Imperator!_" "Hail,
Cæsar, Conqueror and Emperor!" Augustus, greatly struck and delighted with
so novel a circumstance, purchased the bird of the man for a sum which
immediately raised him into opulence.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE IX.

The Power of Music.


One Sunday evening, five choristers were walking on the banks of a river;
after some time, being tired with walking, they sat down on the grass, and
began to sing an anthem. The field on which they sat was terminated at one
extremity by a wood, out of which, as they were singing, they observed a
hare to pass with great swiftness towards the place where they were
sitting, and to stop at about twenty yards' distance from them. She
appeared highly delighted with the harmony of the music, often turning up
the side of her head to listen with more facility. As soon as the
harmonious sound was over, the hare returned slowly towards the wood; when
she had nearly reached the end of the field, the choristers began the same
piece again; at which the hare stopped, turned round, and came swiftly
back to about the same distance as before, where she seemed to listen with
rapture and delight, till they had finished the anthem, when she returned
again by a slow pace up the field, and entered the wood.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE X.

A Conversing Parrot.


During the government of Prince Maurice in Brazil, he had heard of an old
parrot that was much celebrated for answering like a rational creature
many of the common questions put to it. It was at a great distance; but so
much had been said about it that the prince's curiosity was roused, and he
directed it to be sent for. When it was introduced into the room where the
prince was sitting, in company with several Dutchmen, it immediately
exclaimed in the Brazilian language, "What a company of white men are
here!" They asked it, "Who is that man?" (pointing to the prince). The
parrot answered, "Some general or other." When the attendants carried it
up to him, he asked it, through the medium of an interpreter (for he was
ignorant of its language), "Whence do you come?" The parrot answered,
"From Marignan." The prince asked, "To whom do you belong?" It answered,
"To a Portuguese." He asked again, "What do you there?" It answered, "I
look after chickens." The prince laughing, exclaimed, "You look after
chickens!" The parrot in answer said, "Yes, I; and I know well enough how
to do it;" clucking at the same time in imitation of the noise made by the
hen to call together her young.

The prince afterwards observed that although the parrot spoke in a
language he did not understand, yet he could not be deceived, for he had
in the room both a Dutchman who spoke Brazilian, and a Brazilian who spoke
Dutch; that he asked them separately and privately, and both agreed
exactly in their account of the parrot's discourse.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XI.

Mimic.


A priest once brought up an ourang-outang, which became so fond of him
that, wherever he went, it was always desirous of accompanying him.
Whenever therefore he had to perform the service of his church, he was
under the necessity of shutting it up in his room. Once, however, the
animal escaped, and followed the father to the church; where silently
mounting the sounding-board above the pulpit, he lay perfectly still till
the sermon commenced. He then crept to the edge, and overlooking the
preacher, imitated all his gestures in so grotesque a manner, that the
whole congregation were unavoidably urged to laugh. The father, surprised
and confounded at this ill-timed levity, severely rebuked his audience for
their inattention. The reproof failed in its effect; the congregation
still laughed, and the preacher in the warmth of his zeal redoubled his
vociferation and his action; these the ape imitated so exactly that the
congregation could no longer restrain themselves, but burst out into a
loud and continued laughter. A friend of the preacher at length stepped up
to him, and pointed out the cause of this improper conduct; and such was
the arch demeanour of the animal that it was with the utmost difficulty he
could himself command his gravity, while he ordered the servants of the
church to take him away.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XII.

The Heroism of a Hen.


A contest of rather an unusual nature took place in the house of a
respectable innkeeper in Ireland. The parties concerned were, a hen of the
game species, and a rat of the middle size. The hen, in an accidental
perambulation round a spacious room, accompanied by an only chicken, the
sole surviving offspring of a numerous brood, was roused to madness by an
unprovoked attack made by a voracious cowardly rat on her unsuspecting
chirping companion. The shrieks of the beloved captive, while being
dragged away by the enemy, excited every maternal feeling in the
affectionate bosom of the feathered dame; she flew at the corner whence
the alarm arose, seized the lurking enemy by the neck, writhed him about
the room, put out one of his eyes in the engagement, and so fatigued her
opponent by repeated attacks of spur and bill, that in the space of twelve
minutes, during which time the conflict lasted, she put a final period to
the nocturnal invader's existence; nimbly turned round, in wild but
triumphant distraction, to her palpitating nestling, and hugged it in her
victorious bosom.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XIII.

The Cat and Crows.


A pair of crows once made their nest in a tree, of which there were
several planted round the garden of a gentleman, who, in his morning
walks, was often amused by witnessing furious combats between the crows
and a cat. One morning the battle raged more fiercely than usual, till at
last the cat gave way, and took shelter under a hedge, as if to wait a
more favourable opportunity of retreating into the house. The crows
continued for a short time to make a threatening noise; but perceiving
that on the ground they could do nothing more than threaten, one of them
lifted a stone from the middle of the garden, and perched with it on a
tree planted in the hedge, where she sat, watching the motions of the
enemy of her young. As the cat crept along under the hedge, the crow
accompanied her, flying from branch to branch, and from tree to tree; and
when at last puss ventured to quit her hiding-place, the crow, leaving the
trees and hovering over her in the air, let the stone drop from on high on
her back.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XIV.

Filial Duty.


A surgeon's mate on board a ship relates that while lying one evening
awake he saw a rat come into his berth, and after well surveying the
place, retreat with the greatest caution and silence. Soon after it
returned, leading by the ear another rat, which it left at a small
distance from the hole which they entered. A third rat joined this kind
conductor; they then foraged about, and picked up all the small scraps of
biscuit; these they carried to the second rat, which seemed blind, and
remained in the spot where they had left it, nibbling such fare as its
dutiful providers, whom the narrator supposes were its offspring, brought
to it from the more remote parts of the floor.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XV.

The Dinner Bell.


It is customary in large boarding-houses to announce the dinner-hour by
the sound of a bell. A cat belonging to one of these houses always
hastened to the hall on hearing the bell, to get its accustomed meal; but
it happened one day that she was shut up in a chamber, and it was in vain
for her that the bell had sounded. Some hours after, having been released
from her confinement, she hastened to the hall, but found nothing left for
her. The cat thus disappointed got to the bell, and sounding it,
endeavoured to summon the family to a second dinner, in which she doubted
not to participate.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XVI.

A Singular Interposition.


A lady had a tame bird which she was in the habit of letting out of its
cage every day. One morning as it was picking crumbs of bread off the
carpet, her cat, who always before showed great kindness for the bird,
seized it on a sudden, and jumped with it in her mouth upon a table. The
lady was much alarmed for the fate of her favourite, but on turning about
instantly discerned the cause. The door had been left open, and a strange
cat had just come into the room! After turning it out, her own cat came
down from her place of safety, and dropped the bird without having done it
the smallest injury.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XVII.

Odd Fraternity.


A gentleman travelling through Mecklenburg was witness to the following
curious circumstance in an inn at which he was staying. After dinner, the
landlord placed on the floor a large dish of soup, and gave a loud
whistle. Immediately there came into the room a mastiff, a fine Angora
cat, an old raven, and a remarkably large rat with a bell about its neck.
These four animals went to the dish, and without disturbing each other,
fed together; after which the dog, cat, and rat lay before the fire, while
the raven hopped about the room.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XVIII.

Canine Smugglers.


In the Netherlands, they use dogs of a very large and strong breed, for
the purpose of draught. They are harnessed like horses, and chiefly
employed in drawing little carts with fish, vegetables, &c., to market.
Previous to the year 1795, such dogs were also employed in smuggling;
which was the more easy, as they are exceedingly docile. The dogs were
trained to go backwards and forwards between two places on the frontiers,
without any person to attend them. Being loaded with little parcels of
goods, lace, &c., like mules, they set out at midnight, and only went when
it was perfectly dark. An excellent quick-scented dog always went some
paces before the others, stretched out his nose towards all quarters, and
when he scented custom-house officers, turned back, which was the signal
for immediate flight. Concealed behind bushes, or in ditches, the dogs
waited till all was safe, then proceeded on their journey, and reached at
last beyond the frontier the dwelling-house of the receiver of the goods,
who was in the secret. But here, also, the leading dog only at first
showed himself; on a certain whistle, which was a signal that all was
right, they all hastened up. They were then unloaded, taken to a
convenient stable, where there was a good layer of hay, and well fed.
There they rested until midnight, and then returned in the same manner
back, over the frontiers.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XIX.

A Canine Sheep-Stealer.


A shepherd, who was hanged for sheep-stealing, used to commit his
depredations by means of his dog. When he intended to steal any sheep, he
detached the dog to perform the business. With this view, under pretence
of looking at the sheep, with an intention to purchase them, he went
through the flock with the dog at his foot, to whom he secretly gave a
signal, so as to let him know the particular sheep he wanted, perhaps to
the number of ten or twelve, out of a flock of some hundreds; he then went
away, and from a distance of several miles, sent back the dog by himself
in the night time, who picked out the individual sheep that had been
pointed out to him, separated them from the flock, and drove them before
him, frequently a distance of ten or twelve miles, till he came up with
his master, to whom he delivered up his charge.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XX.

The Dog and Goose.


A goose was once observed to attach itself in the strongest and most
affectionate manner to the house dog, but never presumed to go into the
kennel except in rainy weather; whenever the dog barked, the goose would
cackle, and run at the person she supposed the dog barked at, and try to
bite him by the heels. Sometimes she would attempt to feed with the dog;
but this the dog, who treated his faithful companion with indifference,
would not suffer. This bird would not go to roost with the others at
night, unless driven by main force; and when in the morning they were
turned into the field, she would never stir from the yard gate, but sit
there the whole day in sight of the dog. At length orders were given that
she should no longer be molested; being thus left to herself, she ran
about the yard with him all night, and what is particularly remarkable,
whenever the dog went out of the yard and ran into the village, the goose
always accompanied him, contriving to keep up with him by the assistance
of her wings, and in this way of running and flying, followed him all over
the parish. This extraordinary affection of the goose towards the dog,
which continued till his death, two years after it was first observed, is
supposed to have originated in his having saved her from a fox, in the
very moment of distress.

While the dog was ill, the goose never quitted him, day or night, not even
to feed; and it was apprehended that she would have been starved to death
had not a pan of corn been set every day close to the kennel. At this time
the goose generally sat in the kennel, and would not suffer any one to
approach it, except the person who brought the dog's, or her own food. The
end of this faithful bird was melancholy; for when the dog died, she would
still keep possession of the kennel, and a new house dog being introduced,
which in size and colour resembled that lately lost, the poor goose was
unhappily deceived, and going into the kennel as usual, the new inhabitant
seized her by the throat and killed her.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XXI.

Sabinus and his Dog.


After the execution of Sabinus, the Roman general, who suffered death for
his attachment to the family of Germanicus, his body was exposed to the
public upon the precipice of the Gemoniæ, as a warning to all who should
dare to befriend the house of Germanicus: no friend had courage to
approach the body; one only remained true--his faithful dog. For three
days the animal continued to watch the body; his pathetic howlings
awakened the sympathy of every heart. Food was brought him, which he was
kindly encouraged to eat; but on taking the bread, instead of obeying the
impulse of hunger, he fondly laid it on his master's mouth, and renewed
his lamentations; days thus passed, nor did he for a moment quit the body.

The body was at length thrown into the Tiber, and the generous creature,
still unwilling that it should perish, leaped into the water after it, and
clasping the corpse between its paws, vainly endeavoured to preserve it
from sinking.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XXII.

Wrens Learning to Sing.


A wren built her nest in a box, so situated that a family had an
opportunity of observing the mother bird instructing the young ones in the
art of singing peculiar to the species. She fixed herself on one side of
the opening in the box, directly before her young, and began by singing
over her whole song very distinctly. One of the young then attempted to
imitate her. After proceeding through a few notes, its voice broke, and it
lost the tune. The mother immediately recommenced where the young one had
failed, and went very distinctly through the remainder. The young bird
made a second attempt, commencing where it had ceased before, and
continuing the song as long as it was able; and when the note was again
lost, the mother began anew where it stopped, and completed it. Then the
young one resumed the tune and finished it. This done, the mother sang
over the whole series of notes a second time with great precision; and a
second of the young attempted to follow her. The wren pursued the same
course with this as with the first; and so with the third and fourth. It
sometimes happened that the young one would lose the tune three, four, or
more times in the same attempt; in which case the mother uniformly began
where they ceased, and sung the remaining notes; and when each had
completed the trial, she repeated the whole strain. Sometimes two of the
young commenced together. The mother observed the same conduct towards
them as when one sang alone. This was repeated day after day, and several
times in a day.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XXIII.

The Dog of Montargis.


A Frenchman of family and fortune, travelling alone through a forest, was
murdered and buried under a tree. His dog, an English bloodhound, would
not quit his master's grave, till at length, compelled by hunger, he
proceeded to the house of a friend of his master's, and by his melancholy
howling seemed desirous of expressing the loss they had both sustained. He
repeated his cries, ran to the door, looked back to see if any one
followed him, returned to his master's friend, pulled him by the sleeve,
and with dumb eloquence entreated him to go with him.

Struck by these actions, the company decided to follow the dog, who led
them to a tree where he began scratching the earth and howling. On
digging, the body of the unhappy man was found.

Some time after, the dog accidentally met the assassin; when instantly
seizing him by the throat, he was with great difficulty compelled to quit
his prey. As the dog continued to pursue and attack his master's murderer,
although docile to all others, his behaviour began to attract notice and
comment.

At length the affair reached the king's ear, who sent for the dog, who
appeared extremely gentle till he saw the murderer, when he ran fiercely
towards him, growling at and attacking him as usual.

The king, struck with such a collection of circumstantial evidence,
determined to refer the decision to the chance of battle; in other words,
he gave orders for a combat between the assassin and the dog. The lists
were appointed, and the man was allowed for his weapon a great cudgel.

An empty cask was given to the dog as a place of retreat, to enable him to
recover breath. The dog finding himself at liberty ran around his
adversary, avoiding his blows, and menacing him on every side, till his
strength was exhausted; then springing forward, he gripped him by the
throat, threw him on the ground, and obliged him to confess before the
king and the whole court. The assassin was afterwards convicted and
beheaded.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XXIV.

The Bear and Child.


Leopold, Duke of Lorraine, had a bear called Marco, of the sagacity and
sensibility of which we have the following remarkable instance. During a
severe winter, a boy, ready to perish with cold, thought proper to enter
Marco's hut, without reflecting on the danger which he ran in exposing
himself to the mercy of the animal which occupied it. Marco, however,
instead of doing any injury to the child, took him between his paws, and
warmed him by pressing him to his breast until the next morning, when he
suffered him to depart. The boy returned in the evening to the hut, and
was received with the same affection. For several days he had no other
retreat, and it added not a little to his joy, to perceive that the bear
regularly reserved part of his food for him. A number of days passed in
this manner without the servants knowing anything of the circumstance. At
length, when one of them came one day to bring the bear his supper, rather
later than ordinary, he was astonished to see the animal roll his eyes in
a furious manner, and seeming as if he wished him to make as little noise
as possible, for fear of awaking the child, whom he clasped to his breast.
The animal, though ravenous, did not appear the least moved with the food
which was placed before him. The report of this extraordinary circumstance
was soon spread at court, and reached the ears of Leopold; who, with part
of his courtiers, was desirous of being satisfied of the truth of Marco's
generosity. Several of them passed the night near his hut, and beheld with
astonishment that the bear never stirred as long as his guest showed an
inclination to sleep. At dawn the child awoke, was very much ashamed to
find himself discovered, and, fearing that he would be punished for his
rashness, begged pardon. The bear, however, caressed him, and endeavoured
to prevail on him to eat what had been brought to him the evening before,
which he did at the request of the spectators, who conducted him to the
prince. Having learned the whole story, Leopold ordered care to be taken
of the little boy, who would doubtless have soon made his fortune, had he
not died a short time after.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XXV.

The Dolphin.


In the reign of Augustus Cæsar there was a dolphin in the Lucrine lake,
which formed a most romantic attachment to a poor man's son. The boy had
to go every day from Baiæ to Puteoli to school, and such were the friendly
terms on which he had got with the dolphin, that he had only to wait by
the banks of the lake and cry, _Simo_, _Simo_, the name he had given to
the animal, when, lo! Simo came scudding to the shore, let fall the sharp
prickles of his skin, and gently offered his back for the boy to mount
upon. The boy, nothing afraid, used to mount instantly, when the dolphin,
without either rein or spur, would speed across the sea to Puteoli, and
after landing the young scholar, wait about the vicinity till he was
returning home, when it would again perform the same sort of civil
service. The boy was not ungrateful for such extraordinary favour, and
used every day to bring a good store of victuals for Simo, which the
animal would take from his hand in the most tame and kindly manner
imaginable. For several years this friendly intercourse was kept up; it
was, in fact, only terminated by the death of the boy; when, as the story
goes, the dolphin was so affected at seeing him return no more, that it
threw itself on the shore, and died, _as was thought_, of very grief and
sorrow!

[Illustration: 'BUT PAST BELIEF, A DOLPHIN'S ARCHED BACK PRESERVED ARION
FROM HIS DESTINED WRACK; SECURE HE SITS, AND WITH HARMONIOUS STRAINS
REQUITES THE BEARER FOR HIS FRIENDLY PAINS.']



ANECDOTE XXVI.

The Death of Antiochus Revenged.


When Antiochus was slain in battle by Centaretrius the Galatian, the
victor exultingly leaped on the back of the fallen king's horse; but he
had no sooner done so, than the animal, as if sensible that it was
bestrode by the slayer of his master, instantly exhibited signs of the
greatest fury, and bounding forwards to the top of a lofty rock, with a
speed which defied every attempt of Centaretrius to disengage himself,
leaped with him over the precipice, at the foot of which both were found
dashed to pieces.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XXVII.

Mice as Navigators.


Although there are few who would dispute the cleverness and sagacity of
the larger animals, it is doubtful if there are many who credit the mouse
with even average intelligence. The following instance may go far to raise
our humble friend in the popular estimation; more especially as it has
been vouched for by eye-witnesses. In countries where berries are but
thinly dispersed, these little animals are obliged to cross rivers to make
their distant forages. In returning with their booty to their magazines,
they are obliged to recross the stream; in doing which they show an
ingenuity little short of marvellous. The party, which consists of from
six to ten, select a water-lily leaf, or some other floating substance, on
which they place the berries on a heap in the middle; then, by their
united force, bring it to the water's edge, and after launching it, embark
and place themselves round the heap, with their heads joined over it, and
their backs to the water. In this manner they drift down the stream, until
they reach the opposite shore, when they unload their cargo, which they
store away for the proverbial rainy day.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XXVIII.

A Calculating Crow.


A carrion crow, perceiving a brood of fourteen chickens under the care of
the parent-hen, on a lawn, picked up one; but on a young lady opening the
window and giving an alarm, the robber dropped his prey. In the course of
the day, however, the plunderer returned, accompanied by thirteen other
crows, when every one seized his bird, and carried off the whole brood at
once.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XXIX.

Porus Saved by his Elephant.


King Porus, in a battle with Alexander the Great, being severely wounded,
fell from the back of his elephant. The Macedonian soldiers, supposing him
dead, pushed forward, in order to despoil him of his rich clothing and
accoutrements; but the faithful elephant, standing over the body of its
master, boldly repelled every one who dared to approach, and while the
enemy stood at bay, took the bleeding Porus up with his trunk, and placed
him again on his back. The troops of Porus came by this time to his
relief, and the king was saved; but the elephant died of the wounds which
it had received in the heroic defence of its master.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XXX.

Drawing Water.


Some years ago, an ass was employed at Carisbrook Castle, in the Isle of
Wight, in drawing water by a large wheel from a very deep well, supposed
to have been sunk by the Romans. When the keeper wanted water, he would
say to the ass, "Tom, my boy, I want water; get into the wheel, my good
lad;" which Thomas immediately performed with an alacrity and sagacity
that would have done credit to a nobler animal; and no doubt he knew the
precise number of times necessary for the wheel to revolve upon its axis,
to complete his labour, because every time he brought the bucket to the
surface of the well, he constantly stopped and turned round his honest
head to observe the moment when his master laid hold of the bucket to draw
it towards him, because he had then a nice evolution to make, either to
recede or to advance a little. It was pleasing to observe with what
steadiness and regularity the poor animal performed his labour.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XXXI.

The Broken Heart.


During the French Revolution M. des R----, an ancient magistrate and most
estimable man, was condemned to death on the charge of conspiracy and
thrown into prison. M. des R---- had a water spaniel, which had been
brought up by him, and had never quitted him. Refused admission to the
prison, he returned to his master's house, and found it shut; he took
refuge with a neighbour. Every day at the same hour the dog left the
house, and went to the door of the prison. He was refused admittance, but
he constantly passed an hour before it, and then returned. His fidelity at
length won over the porter, and he was one day allowed to enter. The dog
saw his master and clung to him. The gaoler with difficulty forced him
away. He came back the next morning, and every day; once each day he was
admitted. He licked the hand of his friend, looked him in the face, again
licked his hand, and went away of himself.

After the execution, at which the dog was present, he walked by the side
of the corpse to its burial-place, and after the ceremony laid himself
upon the grave. There he passed the first night, the next day, and the
second night. The neighbour in the meantime, unhappy at not seeing him,
goes in search of his friend, finds him by his master's grave, caresses
him, and makes him eat. An hour afterwards the dog escaped, and regained
his favourite place. Three months passed away, each morning of which he
came to seek his food, and then returned to the grave of his master; but
each day he was more sad, more meagre, more languishing. He was chained
up, but broke his fetters; escaped; returned to the grave, and never
quitted it more. It was in vain that they tried to bring him back. They
carried him food, but he ate no longer. For hours he was seen employing
his weakened limbs in digging up the earth that separated him from his
master. Passion gave him strength, and he gradually approached the body;
at last his faithful heart gave way, and he breathed out his last gasp, as
if he knew that he had found his master.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XXXII.

A Comedy of Quadrupeds.


In a play exhibited at Rome, in the reign of Tiberius, there were twelve
elephant performers, six males and six females, clothed in fancy costume.
After they had, at the command of their keeper, danced and performed a
thousand curious antics, a most sumptuous feast was served up for their
refreshment. The table was covered with all sorts of dainties, and golden
goblets filled with the most precious wines; and beds covered with purple
carpets were placed around for the animals to lie upon, after the manner
of the Romans when feasting. On these carpets the elephants laid
themselves down, and at a given signal they reached out their trunks to
the table, and fell to eating and drinking with as much propriety as if
they had been so many honest citizens.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XXXIII.

Cunning as a Fox.


An American gentleman was in pursuit of foxes, accompanied by two
bloodhounds; the dogs were soon in scent, and pursued a fox nearly two
hours, when suddenly they appeared at fault. The gentleman came up with
them near a large log lying upon the ground, and felt much surprised to
find them taking a circuit of a few rods without an object, every trace of
the game seeming to have been lost, while they kept still yelping. On
looking about him, he discovered sly Reynard stretched upon the log,
apparently lifeless. The master made several efforts to direct the
attention of his dogs towards the fox but failed; at length he approached
so near the artful object of his pursuit as to see him breathe. Even then
no alarm was exhibited; and the gentleman seizing a club, aimed a blow at
him, which Reynard evaded by a leap from his singular lurking-place,
having thus for a time effectually eluded his rapacious pursuers.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XXXIV.

More Faithful than Favoured.


A gentleman once possessed a mastiff which guarded the house and yard, but
had never met with the least particular attention from his master. One
night, as his master was retiring to his chamber, attended by his
_faithful_ valet, an Italian, the mastiff silently followed him upstairs,
which he had never been known to do before, and, to his master's
astonishment, presented himself in his bedroom. He was instantly turned
out; but the poor animal began scratching violently at the door, and
howling loudly for admission. The servant was sent to drive him away;
still he returned again, and was more importunate than before to be let
in. The gentleman, weary of opposition, bade the servant open the door,
that they might see what he wanted to do. This done, the dog deliberately
walked up, and crawling under the bed, laid himself down as if desirous to
take up his night's lodging there. To save farther trouble, the indulgence
was allowed. About midnight the chamber door opened, and a person was
heard stepping across the room. The gentleman started from his sleep; the
dog sprung from his covert, and seizing the unwelcome disturber, fixed him
to the spot! All was dark; and the gentleman rang his bell in great
trepidation, in order to procure a light. The person who was pinned to the
floor by the courageous mastiff roared for assistance. It was found to be
the valet, who little expected such a reception. He endeavoured to
apologise for his intrusion, and to make the reasons which induced him to
take this step appear plausible; but the importunity of the dog, the time,
the place, the manner of the valet, all raised suspicions in his master's
mind, and he determined to refer the investigation of the business to a
magistrate. The perfidious Italian at length confessed that it was his
intention to murder his master, and then rob the house. This diabolical
design was frustrated only by the instinctive attachment of the dog to his
master, which seemed to have been directed on this occasion by the
interference of Providence.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XXXV.

Elephant Rope Dancing.


The ease with which the elephant is taught to perform the most agile and
difficult feats, forms a remarkable contrast to its huge unwieldiness of
size. Aristotle tells us that in ancient times elephants were taught by
their keepers to throw stones at a mark, to cast up arms in the air, and
catch them again on their fall; and to dance not merely on the earth, but
on the rope. The first, according to Suetonius, who exhibited elephant
rope dancers, was Galba at Rome. The manner of teaching them to dance on
the ground was simple enough (by the association of music and a hot
floor); but we are not informed how they were taught to skip the rope, or
whether it was the tight or the slack rope, or how high the rope might be.
The silence of history on these points is fortunate for the figurantes of
the present day; since, but for this, their fame might have been utterly
eclipsed. Elephants may, in the days of old Rome, have been taught to
dance on the rope, but when was an elephant ever known to skip on a rope
over the heads of an audience, or to caper amidst a blaze of fire fifty
feet aloft in the air? What would Aristotle have thought of his dancing
elephants if he had seen some of the elephants who perform to-day?

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XXXVI.

A Providential Safe Conduct.


A traveller gives a singular anecdote of a lion, which he says was related
to him by very credible persons. About the year 1614 or 1615, two
Christian slaves at Morocco made their escape, travelling by night, and
hiding themselves in the tops of trees during the day, their Arab pursuers
frequently passing by them. One night, while pursuing their journey, they
were much astonished and alarmed to see a great lion close by them, who
walked when they walked, and stood still when they stood. Thinking this a
safe conduct sent to them by Providence, they took courage, and travelled
in the daytime in company with the lion. The horsemen who had been sent in
pursuit came up, and would have seized upon them, but the lion interposed,
and they were suffered to pass on. Every day these poor fugitives met with
some one or other of the human race who wanted to seize them, but the lion
was their protector until they reached the sea coast in safety, when he
left them.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XXXVII.

A Generous Revenge.


A young man, desirous of getting rid of his dog, took it along with him to
the river. He hired a boat, and rowing into the stream, threw the animal
in. The poor creature attempted to climb up the side of the boat, but his
master, whose intention was to drown him, constantly pushed him back with
the oar. In doing this, he fell himself into the water, and would
certainly have been drowned, had not the dog, as soon as he saw his master
struggling in the stream, suffered the boat to float away, and held him
above water till assistance arrived, and his life was saved.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XXXVIII.

Are Beasts mere Machines?


A gentleman one day talking with a friend maintained that beasts were mere
machines, and had no sort of reason to direct them; and that when they
cried or made a noise, it was only one of the wheels of the clock or
machine that made it. The friend, who was of a different opinion, replied,
"I have now in my kitchen two turnspits, who take their turns regularly
every other day to get into the wheel; one of them, not liking his
employment, hid himself on the day that he should work, so that his
companion was forced to mount the wheel in his stead, but crying and
wagging his tail, he made a sign for those in attendance to follow him. He
immediately conducted them to a garret, where he dislodged the idle dog,
and killed him immediately."

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XXXIX.

Long Lost Found Again.


A female elephant belonging to a gentleman at Calcutta broke loose from
her keeper, and was lost in the woods. The excuses which the keeper made
were not admitted. It was supposed that he had sold the elephant; his wife
and family therefore were sold for slaves, and he was himself condemned to
work upon the roads. About twelve years after, this man was ordered into
the country to assist in catching wild elephants. The keeper fancied he
saw his long-lost elephant in a group that was before them. He was
determined to go up to it; nor could the strongest representations of the
danger dissuade him from his purpose. When he approached the creature, she
knew him, and giving him three salutes, by waving her trunk in the air,
knelt down and received him on her back. She afterwards assisted in
securing the other elephants, and likewise brought her three young ones.
The keeper recovered his character; and, as a recompense for his
sufferings and intrepidity, had an annuity settled on him for life. This
elephant was afterwards in the possession of Governor Hastings.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XL.

Ostrich Riding.



A gentleman tells how, during the time of his residence at Podor, a French
factory on the banks of the river Niger, there were two ostriches, though
young, of gigantic size, which afforded him a very remarkable sight. "They
were," he says, "so tame, that two little blacks mounted both together on
the back of the largest. No sooner did he feel their weight, than he began
to run as fast as possible, and carried them several times round the
village, as it was impossible to stop him otherwise than by obstructing
the passage. This sight pleased me so much, that I wished it to be
repeated, and to try their strength, directed a full-grown negro to mount
the smallest, and two others the largest. This burthen did not seem at all
disproportionate to their strength. At first they went at a tolerably
sharp trot, but when they became heated a little, they expanded their
wings as though to catch the wind, and moved with such fleetness, that
they scarcely seemed to touch the ground. Most people have, at one time or
another, seen a partridge run; and consequently know that there is no man
whatever able to keep up with it; and it is easy to imagine, that if this
bird had a longer step, its speed would be considerably augmented. The
ostrich moves like the partridge, with this advantage; and I am satisfied
that those I am speaking of would have distanced the fleetest racehorses
that were ever bred in England. It is true they would not hold out so long
as a horse; but they would undoubtedly go over a given space in less time.
I have frequently beheld this sight, which is capable of giving one an
idea of the prodigious strength of an ostrich, and of showing what use it
might be of, had we but the method of breaking and managing it as we do a
horse."

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XLI.

A Choice Retaliation.


A tame elephant kept by a merchant was suffered to go at large. The animal
used to walk about the streets in as quiet and familiar a manner as any of
the inhabitants, and delighted much in visiting the shops, particularly
those which sold herbs and fruit, where he was well received, except by a
couple of brutal cobblers, who, without any cause, took offence at the
generous creature, and once or twice attempted to wound his proboscis with
their awls. The noble animal, who knew it was beneath him to crush them,
did not disdain to chastise them by other means. He filled his large trunk
with a considerable quantity of water, not of the cleanest quality, and
advancing to them as usual, covered them at once with a dirty flood. The
fools were laughed at, and the punishment applauded.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XLII.

The Horse and Greyhound.


Various have been the opinions upon the difference of speed between a
well-bred greyhound and a racehorse if opposed to each other. Wishes had
been frequently indulged by the sporting world that some criterion could
be adopted by which the superiority of speed could be fairly ascertained,
when the following circumstance accidentally took place, and afforded some
information upon what had been previously considered a matter of great
uncertainty. In the month of December 1800 a match was to have been run
over Doncaster racecourse for one hundred guineas, but one of the horses
having been withdrawn, a mare started alone, that by running the ground
she might ensure the wager; when having run about one mile in the four,
she was accompanied by a greyhound, which joined her from the side of the
course, and emulatively entering into the competition, continued to race
with the mare for the other three miles, keeping nearly head and head, and
affording an excellent treat to the field by the energetic exertions of
each. At passing the distance post five to four was betted in favour of
the greyhound, when parallel with the stand it was even betting, and any
person might have taken his choice from five to ten; the mare, however,
had the advantage by a head at the termination of the course.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XLIII.

The Goat.


A gentleman who had taken an active share in the rebellion of 1715, after
the battle of Preston escaped into the West Highlands, where a lady, a
near relative, afforded him an asylum. A faithful servant conducted him to
the mouth of a cave, and furnished him with an abundant store of
provisions. The fugitive crept in at a low aperture, dragging his stores
along. When he reached a wider and loftier expanse he found some obstacle
before him. He drew his dirk, but unwilling to strike, lest he might take
the life of a companion in seclusion, he stooped down, and discovered a
goat with her kid stretched on the ground. He soon perceived that the
animal was in great pain, and feeling her body and limbs, ascertained that
her leg was fractured. He bound it up with his garter, and offered her a
share of the bread beside him; but she stretched out her tongue, as if to
apprise him that her mouth was parched with thirst. He gave her water,
which she took readily, and then ate some bread. After midnight he
ventured out of the cave: all was still. He plucked an armful of grass and
cut tender twigs, which the goat accepted with manifestations of joy and
thankfulness. The prisoner derived much comfort in having a living
creature in this dungeon, and he caressed and fed her tenderly. The man
who was entrusted to bring him supplies fell sick; and when another
attempted to penetrate into the cavern the goat furiously opposed him,
presenting her horns in all directions, till the fugitive, hearing a
disturbance, came forward. This new attendant giving the watchword removed
every doubt of his good intentions, and the amazon of the recess obeyed
her benefactor in permitting him to advance. The gentleman was convinced
that had a band of military attacked the cavern, his grateful patient
would have died in his defence.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XLIV.

A Mother Watching her Young.


The following singular instance of the far-sighted watchfulness of the
turkey-hen over her young is narrated by a French priest. "I have heard,"
he says, "a turkey-hen, when at the head of her brood, send forth the most
hideous scream, without being able to perceive the cause; her young ones,
however, immediately when the warning was given skulked under the bushes,
the grass, or whatever else seemed to offer shelter or protection. They
even stretched themselves at full length on the ground, and continued
motionless as if dead. In the meantime the mother, with her eyes directed
upwards, continued her cries and screaming as before. On looking up in the
direction in which she seemed to gaze I discovered a black spot just under
the clouds, but was unable at first to determine what it was; however, it
soon appeared to be a bird of prey, though at first at too great a
distance to be distinguished. I have seen one of those animals continue in
this agitated state, and her whole brood pinned down, as it were, to the
ground for four hours together, whilst their formidable foe has taken its
circuits, has mounted and hovered directly over their heads; at last upon
his disappearing the parent changed her note and sent forth another cry,
which in an instant gave life to the whole trembling tribe, and they all
flocked round her with expressions of pleasure, as if conscious of their
happy escape from danger."

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XLV.

Concerts of Animals.


An abbot, a man of wit, and skilled in the construction of new musical
instruments, was ordered by Louis XI., King of France, more in jest than
in earnest, to procure him a concert of swines' voices. The abbot said
that the thing could doubtless be done, but that it would take a good deal
of money. The king ordered that he should have whatever he required for
the purpose. The abbot then wrought a thing as singular as ever was seen;
for out of a great number of hogs of several ages which he got together,
and placed under a tent, or pavilion, covered with velvet, before which he
had a table of wood painted, with a certain number of keys, he made an
organical instrument, and as he played upon the said keys with little
spikes, which pricked the hogs, he made them cry in such order and
consonance, he highly delighted the king and all his company.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XLVI.

Travellers.


An innkeeper once sent, as a present by the carrier, to a friend a dog and
cat tied up in a bag, who had been companions more than ten months. A
short time after the dog and cat took their departure together and
returned to their old habitation, a distance of thirteen miles. They
jogged along the road side by side, and on one occasion the dog gallantly
defended his fellow-traveller from the attack of another dog they met.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XLVII.

The Watch Dog.


A thief who had broken into the shop of Cellini, the Florentine artist,
and was breaking open the caskets in order to come at some jewels, was
arrested in his progress by a dog, against whom he found it a difficult
matter to defend himself with a sword. The faithful animal ran to the room
where the journeymen slept, but as they did not seem to hear him barking
he drew away the bedclothes, and pulling them alternately by the arms,
forcibly awaked them; then barking very loud he showed the way to the
thief, and went on before; but the men would not follow him, and at last
locked their door. The dog having lost all hopes of the assistance of
these men undertook the task alone, and ran downstairs; he could not find
the villain in the shop, but immediately rushing into the street came up
with him, and tearing off his cloak, would have treated him according to
his deserts if the fellow had not called to some tailors in the
neighbourhood, and begged they would assist him against a mad dog; the
tailors believing him came to his assistance, and compelled the poor
animal to retire.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XLVIII.

A Shrewd Guesser.


A French officer, more remarkable for his birth and spirit than his
wealth, had served the Venetian republic for some years with great valour
and fidelity, but had not met with that preferment which he merited. One
day he waited on a nobleman whom he had often solicited in vain, but on
whose friendship he had still some reliance. The reception he met with was
cool and mortifying; the nobleman turned his back upon the necessitous
veteran, and left him to find his way to the street through a suite of
apartments magnificently furnished. He passed them lost in thought, till,
casting his eyes on a sumptuous sideboard, where a valuable collection of
Venetian glass, polished and formed in the highest degree of perfection,
stood on a damask cloth as a preparation for a splendid entertainment, he
took hold of a corner of the linen, and turning to a faithful English
mastiff which always accompanied him, said to the animal, in a kind of
absence of mind, "Here, my poor old friend; you see how these haughty
tyrants indulge themselves, and yet how we are treated!" The poor dog
looked his master in the face, and gave tokens that he understood him. The
master walked on, but the mastiff slackened his pace, and laying hold of
the damask cloth with his teeth, at one hearty pull brought all the glass
on the sideboard in shivers to the ground, thus depriving the insolent
noble of his favourite exhibition of splendour.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XLIX.

A Tame Colony.


A well-known traveller, in a description of the Island of Tristan
d'Acunha, states that the animals found on this solitary spot were so
tame, that it was necessary to clear a path through the birds which were
reposing on the rocks, by kicking them aside. One species of seal did not
move at all when struck or pelted, and at length some of the company
amused themselves by mounting them, and riding them into the sea!

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE L.

An Usurper Punished.


Some years ago a sparrow had early in spring taken possession of an old
swallow's nest, and had laid some eggs in it, when the original builder
and owner of the castle made her appearance, and claimed possession. The
sparrow, firmly seated, resisted the claim of the swallow; a smart battle
ensued, in which the swallow was joined by its mate, and during the
conflict by several of their comrades. All the efforts of the assembled
swallows to dislodge the usurper were, however, unsuccessful. Finding
themselves completely foiled in this object, it would seem that they had
held a council of war to consult on ulterior measures; and the resolution
they came to shows that with no ordinary degree of ingenuity some very
lofty considerations of right and justice were combined in their
deliberations. Since the sparrow could not be dispossessed of the nest,
the next question with them appears to have been, how he could be
otherwise punished for his unlawful occupation of a property
unquestionably belonging to its original constructor. The council were
unanimous in thinking that nothing short of the death of the intruder
could atone for so heinous an offence; and having so decided, they
proceeded to put their sentence into execution in the following very
extraordinary manner. Quitting the scene of the contest for a time, they
returned with accumulated numbers, each bearing a beak full of building
materials; and without any further attempt to beat out the sparrow, they
instantly set to work and built up the entrance into the nest, enclosing
the sparrow within the clay tenement, and leaving her to perish in the
stronghold she had so bravely defended.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LI.

The Rights of Hospitality.


A native Moor who went to hunt the lion, having proceeded far into a
forest, happened to meet with two lion's whelps that came to caress him;
the hunter stopped with the little animals, and waiting for the coming of
the sire or the dam, took out his breakfast, and gave them a part. The
lioness arrived unperceived by the huntsman, so that he had not time, or
perhaps wanted the courage, to take to his gun. After having for some time
looked at the man that was thus feasting her young, the lioness went away,
and soon after returned, bearing with her a sheep, which she came and laid
at the huntsman's feet.

The Moor, thus become one of the family, took this occasion of making a
good meal, skinned the sheep, made a fire, and roasted a part, giving the
entrails to the young. The lion in his turn came also; and, as if
respecting the rights of hospitality, showed no tokens whatever of
ferocity. Their guest the next day, having finished his provisions,
returned, and came to a resolution never more to kill any of those
animals, the noble generosity of which he had so fully proved. He stroked
and caressed the whelps at taking leave of them, and the dam and sire
accompanied him till he was safely out of the forest.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LII.

A Grateful Lioness.


A Dreadful famine raged at Buenos Ayres, yet the governor, afraid of
giving the Indians a habit of spilling Spanish blood, forbade the
inhabitants on pain of death to go into the fields in search of relief,
placing soldiers at all the outlets to the country, with orders to fire
upon those who should attempt to transgress his orders. A woman, however,
called Maldonata, was artful enough to elude the vigilance of the guards,
and escape. After wandering about the country for a long time, she sought
for shelter in a cavern, but she had scarcely entered it when she espied a
lioness, the sight of which terrified her. She was, however, soon quieted
by the caresses of the animal, who, in return for a service rendered her,
showed every sign of affection and friendliness. She never returned from
searching after her own daily subsistence without laying a portion of it
at the feet of Maldonata, until her whelps being strong enough to walk
abroad, she took them out with her and never returned.

Some time after Maldonata fell into the hands of the Spaniards, and being
brought back to Buenos Ayres on the charge of having left the city
contrary to orders, the governor, a man of cruelty, condemned the
unfortunate woman to a death which none but the most cruel tyrant could
have thought of. He ordered some soldiers to take her into the country and
leave her tied to a tree, either to perish by hunger, or to be torn to
pieces by wild beasts, as he expected. Two days after, he sent the same
soldiers to see what was become of her; when, to their great surprise,
they found her alive and unhurt, though surrounded by lions and tigers,
which a lioness at her feet kept at some distance. As soon as the lioness
perceived the soldiers, she retired a little, and enabled them to unbind
Maldonata, who related to them the history of this lioness, whom she knew
to be the same she had formerly assisted in the cavern. On the soldiers
taking Maldonata away, the lioness fawned upon her as unwilling to part.
The soldiers reported what they had seen to the commander, who could not
but pardon a woman who had been so singularly protected, without appearing
more inhuman than lions themselves.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LIII.

A Good Finder.


One day a tradesman, walking with a friend, offered to wager that if he
were to hide a five-shilling piece in the dust, his dog would discover and
bring it to him. The wager was accepted, and the piece of money marked and
secreted. When the two had proceeded some distance, the tradesman called
to his dog that he had lost something, and ordered him to seek it. The dog
immediately turned back, and his master and his companion pursued their
walk. Meanwhile a traveller, driving in a small chaise, perceived the
piece of money which his horse had kicked from its hiding-place, alighted,
took it up, and drove to his inn. The dog had just reached the spot in
search of the lost piece, when the stranger picked it up. He followed the
chaise, went into the inn. Having scented out the coin in the pocket of
the traveller, he leaped up at him incessantly. Supposing him to be some
dog that had lost his master, the traveller regarded his movements as
marks of fondness; and as the animal was handsome, determined to keep him.
He gave him a good supper, and on retiring took him with him to his
chamber. No sooner had he pulled off his breeches than they were seized by
the dog; the owner, conceiving that he wanted to play with them, took them
away. The animal began to bark at the door, which the traveller opened,
thinking the dog wanted to go out. The dog snatched up the breeches and
away he flew, the traveller posting after him with his nightcap on. The
dog ran full speed to his master's house, followed by the stranger, who
accused the dog of robbing him. "Sir," said the master, "my dog is a very
faithful creature; and if he ran away with your breeches, it is because
you have in them money which does not belong to you." The traveller became
still more angry. "Compose yourself, sir," rejoined the other, smiling;
"without doubt there is in your purse a five-shilling piece which you
picked up in the road, and which I hid knowing my dog would bring it back.
This is the cause of the robbery which he has committed upon you." The
stranger acknowledged the truth of the tradesman's statement, delivered up
the coin, and departed.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LIV.

Musical Seals.


Seals have a very delicate sense of hearing, and are much delighted with
music. A gentleman, in his account of a voyage to Spitzbergen, mentions
that the captain of the ship's son, who was fond of playing on the violin,
never failed to have a numerous auditory when in the seas frequented by
these animals; and he has seen them follow the ship for miles when any
person was playing on deck.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LV.

A Sly Couple.


A gentleman in the county of Stirling kept a greyhound and a pointer, and
being fond of coursing, the pointer was accustomed to find the hares, and
the greyhound to catch them. When the season was over, it was found that
the dogs were in the habit of going out by themselves, and killing hares
for their own amusement. To prevent this, a large iron ring was fastened
to the pointer's neck by a leather collar, and hung down so as to prevent
the dog from running, or jumping over dykes, &c. The animals, however,
continued to stroll out to the fields together; and one day the gentleman,
suspecting that all was not right, resolved to watch them, and to his
surprise, found that the moment when they thought that they were
unobserved, the greyhound took up the iron ring in his mouth, and carrying
it, they set off to the hills, and began to search for hares as usual.
They were followed, and it was observed, that whenever the pointer scented
the hare, the ring was dropped, and the greyhound stood ready to pounce
upon poor puss the moment the other drove her from her form, but that he
uniformly returned to assist his companion after he had caught his prey.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LVI.

A Sense of Ridicule.


Persons who have the management of elephants have often observed that they
know very well when any one is ridiculing them, and that they very often
revenge themselves when they have an opportunity. A painter wished to draw
an elephant in the menagerie at Paris in an extraordinary attitude, which
was with his trunk lifted up, and his mouth open. An attendant on the
painter, to make the elephant preserve the position, threw fruits in his
mouth, and often pretended to throw them without doing so. The animal
became irritated, and as if knowing that the painter was to blame rather
than his servant, turned to him, and dashed a quantity of water from his
trunk over the paper on which the painter was sketching his distorted
portrait.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LVII.

The Tame Sea-gull.


Many years ago a gentleman had accidentally caught a sea-gull, whose wings
he cut, and put it into his garden. The bird remained in that situation
for several years, and being kindly treated, became so familiar as to come
at call to be fed at the kitchen door. It was known by the name of Willie.
This bird became at last so tame that no pains were taken to preserve it,
and its wings having grown to full length it flew away, joined the other
gulls on the beach, and came back, from time to time, to pay a visit to
the house. When its companions left the country at the usual season,
Willie accompanied them, much to the regret of the family. To their great
joy, however, it returned next season; and with its usual familiarity came
to its old haunt, where it was welcomed and fed very liberally. In this
way it went and returned for _forty years_, without intermission, and kept
up its acquaintance in the most cordial manner; for while in the country
it visited them almost daily, answered to its name like any domestic
animal, and ate almost out of the hand. One year, however, very near the
period of its final disappearance, Willie did not pay his respects to the
family for eight or ten days after the general flock of gulls were upon
the coast, and great was the lamentation for his loss, as it was feared he
was dead; but to the surprise and joy of the family, a servant one morning
came running into the breakfast-room in ecstasy, announcing that Willie
had returned. The whole company rose from the table to welcome Willie.
Food was soon supplied in abundance, and Willie with his usual frankness
ate of it heartily, and was as tame as any barn-yard fowl about the house.
In a year or two afterwards this grateful bird discontinued his visits for
ever.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LVIII.

Maternal Affection.


Whilst a ship on a voyage of discovery to the North Pole was locked in the
ice, one morning the man at the masthead reported that three bears were
making their way towards the ship. They had, no doubt, been invited by the
scent of some blubber of a sea-horse which the crew was burning on the ice
at the time of their approach. They proved to be a she bear and her two
cubs; but the cubs were nearly as large as the dam. They ran eagerly to
the fire, and drew out part of the flesh that remained unconsumed, and ate
it voraciously. The crew threw great lumps of the flesh which they had
still left upon the ice, which the old bear fetched away singly, laying
every lump before the cubs as she brought it, and dividing it, gave each a
share, reserving but a small portion to herself. As she was fetching away
the last piece, they shot both the cubs dead, and wounded the dam, but not
mortally. It would have drawn tears of pity from any but the most
unfeeling to have marked the affectionate concern of this poor animal in
the dying moments of her expiring young. Though sorely wounded, she
crawled to the place where they lay, carrying a lump of flesh she had just
fetched away, tore it in pieces, and laid it down before them; when she
saw that they refused to eat, she laid her paws first upon one, then upon
the other, and endeavoured to raise them up, making at the same time the
most pitiable moans. Finding she could not stir them, she went off, and
when she had got at some distance, looked back and moaned; and that not
availing to entice them away, she returned, and smelling round them, began
to lick their wounds. She went off a second time, and having crawled a few
paces, looked again behind her, and for some time stood moaning. But her
cubs not rising to follow her, she returned, and with signs of
inexpressible fondness went round them, pawing them successively. Finding
at last that they were cold and lifeless, she raised her head towards the
ship, and growled a curse upon the destroyers, which they returned with a
volley of musket-balls. She fell between her cubs, and died licking their
wounds.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LIX.

The Pig Pointer.


A sow, which was a thin, long-legged animal (one of the ugliest of the New
Forest breed), when very young conceived so great a partiality to some
pointer puppies that a gamekeeper upon a neighbouring estate was breaking,
that it played, and often came to feed with them. From this circumstance
it occurred to the gamekeeper that, having broken many a dog as obstinate
as a pig, he would try if he could not also succeed in breaking a pig. The
little animal would often go out with the puppies to some distance from
home; and he enticed it farther by a sort of pudding made of barley-meal,
which he carried in one of his pockets. The other he filled with stones,
which he threw at the pig whenever she misbehaved, as he was not able to
catch and correct her in the same manner he did his dogs. He found the
animal tractable, and soon taught her what he wished by this mode of
reward and punishment. They were frequently seen out together, when the
sow quartered her ground as regularly as any pointer, stood when she came
on game (having an excellent nose), and backed other dogs as well as he
ever saw a pointer. When she came on the cold scent of game, she slackened
her trot, and gradually dropped her ears and tail, till she was certain,
and then fell down on her knees. So staunch was she, that she would
frequently remain five minutes and upwards on her point. As soon as the
game rose, she always returned to her master, grunting very loudly for her
reward of pudding if it was not immediately given to her.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LX.

Infant Fascination.


A little girl about three years of age was observed for a number of days
to go to a considerable distance from the house with a piece of bread
which she obtained from her mother. The circumstance attracted the
attention of the mother, who desired her husband to follow the child, and
observe what she did with it. On coming to the child, he found her engaged
in feeding several snakes, called yellow heads, a species of rattlesnake.
He immediately took her away and proceeded to the house for his gun, and
returning, killed two of them at one shot, and another a few days after.
The child called these reptiles in the manner of calling chickens; and
when her father observed, if she continued the practice they would bite
her, the child replied, "No, father, they won't bite me; they only eat the
bread I give them."

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXI.

A Domesticated Seal.


A gentleman once succeeded in taming a seal. It appeared to possess all
the sagacity of the dog, lived in its master's house, and ate from his
hand. He usually took it with him in his fishing excursions, upon which
occasions it afforded no small entertainment. When thrown into the water,
it would follow for miles the track of the boat; and although thrust back
by the oars, it never relinquished its purpose. Indeed, it struggled so
hard to regain its seat, that one would imagine its fondness for its
master had entirely overcome the natural predilection for its native
element.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXII.

Retribution.


In a park a fawn, drinking, was suddenly pounced upon by one of the swans,
which pulled the animal into the water, and held it under until quite
drowned. The atrocious action was observed by the other deer in the park,
and did not long go unrevenged; for shortly after this very swan, which
had hitherto never been molested by the deer, was singled out when on
land, and furiously attacked by a herd, which surrounded and presently
killed the offender.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXIII.

Strange Rooks.


In a large north of England town a pair of strange rooks, after an
unsuccessful attempt to effect a lodgment in a rookery at a little
distance from the Exchange, were compelled to abandon the attempt, and to
take refuge on the spire of a building; and although constantly molested
by other rooks, they built their nest on the top of the vane, and there
reared a brood of young ones, undisturbed by the noise of the populace
below them. The nest and its inmates were of course turned about by every
change of the wind. For ten years they continued to build their nest in
the same place, soon after which the spire was taken down.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXIV.

A Singular Foster-Mother.


On an estate in Scotland a terrier had a litter of whelps, which were
immediately taken from her and drowned. The unfortunate mother was quite
disconsolate, until, a few weeks after, she perceived a brood of
ducklings, which she immediately seized and carried to her lair, where she
retained them, following them out and in with the greatest care, and
nursing them after her own fashion, with the most affectionate anxiety.
When the ducklings, following their natural instinct, went into the water,
their foster-mother exhibited the utmost alarm; and as soon as they
returned to land, she snatched them up in her mouth, and ran home with
them. What adds to the singularity of this circumstance is, that the same
animal, when deprived of a litter of puppies the year preceding, seized
two cock-chickens, which she reared with the like care she bestows upon
her present family. When the young cocks began to try their voices, their
foster-mother was as much annoyed as she now seems to be by the swimming
of the ducklings--and never failed to repress their attempts at crowing.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXV.

The Shepherd's Dog.


James Hogg, the shepherd poet, had a dog named Sirrah, who was for many
years his sole companion. He was, the shepherd says, the best dog he ever
saw, in spite of his surly manners and unprepossessing appearance. The
first time he saw the dog, a drover was leading him by a rope, and,
although hungry and lean, "I thought," Hogg tells us, "I discovered a sort
of sullen intelligence in his face, so I gave the drover a guinea for him.
I believe there never was a guinea so well laid out. He was scarcely then
a year old, and knew nothing of herding; but as soon as he discovered that
it was his duty to do so, I can never forget with what eagerness he
learned. He would try every way till he found out what I wanted him to do;
and when once I made him to understand a direction, he never forgot or
mistook it again."

About seven hundred lambs, which were at once under Mr. Hogg's care, broke
up at midnight, and scampered off in three divisions across the hills, in
spite of all that the shepherd and an assistant lad could do to keep them
together. "Sirrah," cried the shepherd, in great affliction, "my man,
they're a' awa." The night was so dark that he did not see Sirrah; but the
faithful animal had heard his master's words, and without more ado he set
off in quest of the flock. The shepherd and his companion spent the whole
night in scouring the hills, but of neither the lambs nor Sirrah could
they obtain the slightest trace. "We had nothing for it," says the
shepherd, "but to return to our master, and inform him that we had lost
his whole flock of lambs. On our way home, however, we discovered a body
of lambs at the bottom of a deep ravine, and Sirrah standing in front of
them, looking all around for some relief. We concluded that it was one of
the divisions of the lambs which Sirrah had been unable to manage until he
came to that commanding situation. But what was our astonishment when we
discovered by degrees that not one was wanting! How he had got all the
divisions collected in the dark is beyond my comprehension. I never felt
so grateful to any creature below the sun as I did to my honest Sirrah
that morning."

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXVI.

Foraging.


A constable once made a complaint before a bench of London magistrates
against a horse for stealing hay. The complainant stated that the horse
came regularly every night of its own accord, and without any attendant,
to the coach-stands in St. George's, fully satisfied his appetite, and
then galloped away. He defied the whole of the parish officers to
apprehend him; for if they attempted to go near him while he was eating,
he would throw up his heels and kick at them, or run at them, and if they
did not go out of the way, he would bite them. The constable therefore
thought it best to represent the case to the magistrates.

_One of the Magistrates:_ "Well, Mr. Constable, if you should be annoyed
again by this animal in the execution of your duty, you may apprehend him
if you can, and bring him before us to answer your complaints."

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXVII.

Going to Market.


A butcher and cattle dealer had a dog which he usually took with him when
he drove cattle to the market, at a town some nine miles distant from his
home, to be sold, and who displayed uncommon dexterity in managing them.
At last, so convinced was the master of the sagacity, as well as the
fidelity of his dog, that he made a wager that he would entrust him with a
fixed number of sheep and oxen to drive alone to market. It was stipulated
that no person should be within sight or hearing, who had the least
control over the dog; nor was any spectator to interfere, or be within a
quarter of a mile. On the day of trial, the dog proceeded with his
business in the most dexterous and steady manner; and although he had
frequently to drive his charge through the herds who were grazing, yet he
never lost one, but conducting them into the very yard to which he was
used to drive them when with his master, he significantly delivered them
up to the person appointed to receive them, by barking at the door. What
more particularly marked the dog's sagacity was, that when the path the
herd travelled lay through a spot where others were grazing, he would run
forward, stop his own drove, and then driving the others from each side of
the path, collect his scattered charge and proceed. He was several times
afterwards thus sent alone for the amusement of the curious or the
convenience of his master, and always acquitted himself in the same adroit
and intelligent manner.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXVIII.

The Lion and his Keeper.


In a large continental menagerie there was a lion called Danco, whose cage
was in want of some repairs. His keeper desired a carpenter to set about
it, but when the workman came and saw the lion, he started back with
terror. The keeper entered the animal's cage, and led him to the upper
part of it, while the lower was refitting. He there amused himself for
some time playing with the lion, and being wearied, he soon fell asleep.
The carpenter, fully relying upon the vigilance of the keeper, pursued his
work with rapidity, and when he had finished, he called him to see what
was done. The keeper made no answer. Having repeatedly called in vain, he
began to feel alarmed at his situation, and he determined to go to the
upper part of the cage, where, looking through the railing, he saw the
lion and the keeper sleeping side by side. He immediately uttered a loud
cry; the lion, awakened by the noise, started up and stared at the
carpenter with an eye of fury, and then, placing his paw on the breast of
his keeper, lay down to sleep again. At length the keeper was awakened by
some of the attendants, and he did not appear in the least apprehensive on
account of the situation in which he found himself, but shook the lion by
the paw, and then gently conducted him to his former residence.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXIX.

Immovable Fidelity.


A dog, between the breed of a mastiff and a bull-dog, belonging to a
chimney-sweeper, laid, according to his master's orders, on a soot-bag,
which he had placed inadvertently almost in the middle of a narrow back
street, in a town in the south of England. A loaded cart passing by, the
driver desired the dog to move out of the way. On refusing he was scolded,
then beaten, first gently, and afterwards with the smart application of
the cart-whip; all to no purpose. The fellow, with an oath, threatened to
drive over the dog--he did so, and the faithful animal, in endeavouring to
arrest the progress of the wheel by biting it, was crushed to pieces.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXX.

Tame Hares.


The hare is scarcely a domestic animal; yet we have an account of one who
was so domesticated as to feed from the hand, lay under a chair in a
common sitting-room, and appear in every other respect as easy and
comfortable in its situation as a lapdog. It now and then went out into
the garden, but after regaling itself with the fresh air, always returned
to the house as its proper habitation. Its usual companions were a
greyhound and spaniel, with whom it spent its evenings, the whole three
sporting and sleeping together on the same hearth. What makes the
circumstance more remarkable is, that the greyhound and spaniel were both
so fond of hare-hunting, that they used often to go out coursing together,
without any person accompanying them; they were like the "_sly couple_",
of whose devotion to the chase an amusing instance has been already
recorded.

A traveller once brought a young hare to such a degree of frolicsome
familiarity, that it would run and jump about his sofa and bed; leap upon,
and pat him with its fore feet; or whilst he was reading, knock the book
out of his hands, as if to claim, like a fondled child, the exclusive
preference of his attention.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXXI.

A Grateful Return.


A favourite house-dog, left to the care of its master's servants, while he
was himself away, would have been starved by them if it had not had
recourse to the kitchen of a friend of its master's, which in better days
it had occasionally visited. On the return of the master it enjoyed plenty
at home, and stood in no further need of the liberality it experienced;
but still it did not forget that hospitable kitchen where it had found a
resource in adversity. A few days after, the dog fell in with a duck,
which, as he found in no private pond, he probably concluded to be no
private property. He snatched up the duck in his teeth, carried it to the
kitchen where he had been so hospitably fed, laid it at the cook's feet,
with many polite movements of the tail, and then scampered off with much
seeming complacency at having given this testimony of his grateful sense
of favours.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXXII.

Assisting the Aged.


A captain of cavalry in a French regiment mentions that a horse belonging
to his company, being from age unable to eat his hay or grind his oats,
was fed for two months by two horses on his right and left, who ate with
him. These two horses, drawing the hay out of the rack, chewed it, and
then put it before the old horse, and did the same with the oats, which he
was then able to eat.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXXIII.

Oyster Opening.


A well-known traveller relates a circumstance concerning the orang-otang
in its wild state, which is indicative of very considerable powers, both
of reflection and invention. When the fruits on the mountains are
exhausted, they will frequently descend to the sea-coast, where they feed
on various species of shell-fish, but in particular on a large sort of
oyster, which commonly lies open on the shore. "Fearful," he says, "of
putting in their paws, lest the oyster should close and crush them, they
insert a stone as a wedge within the shell; this prevents it from closing,
and they then drag out their prey, and devour it at leisure."

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXXIV.

Sonnini and his Cat.


M. Sonnini, when in Egypt, had an Angora cat, of which he was extremely
fond. It was entirely covered with long white silken hairs; its tail
formed a magnificent plume, which the animal elevated at pleasure over its
body. Not one spot, nor a single dark shade, tarnished the dazzling white
of its coat. Its nose and lips were of a delicate rose colour. Two large
eyes sparkled in its round head: one was of a light yellow, and the other
of a fine blue.

This beautiful animal had even more loveliness of manners than grace in
its attitude and movements. However ill any one used her, she never
attempted to advance her claws from their sheaths. Sensible to kindness,
she licked the hand which caressed, and even that which tormented her. In
Sonnini's solitary moments, she chiefly kept by his side; she interrupted
him often in the midst of his labours or meditations, by little caresses
extremely touching, and generally followed him in his walks. During his
absence she sought and called for him incessantly. She recognised his
voice at a distance, and seemed on each fresh meeting with him to feel
increased delight.

"This animal," says Sonnini, "was my principal amusement for several
years. How was the expression of attachment depicted upon her countenance!
How many times have her caresses made me forget my troubles, and consoled
me in my misfortunes! My beautiful and interesting companion, however, at
length perished. After several days of suffering, during which I never
forsook her, her eyes, constantly fixed on me, were at length
extinguished; and her loss rent my heart with sorrow."

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXXV.

Division of Labour.


The Alpine marmots are said to act in concert in the collection of
materials for the construction of their habitations. Some of them, we are
told, cut the herbage, others collect it into heaps; a third set serve as
waggons to carry it to their holes; while others perform all the functions
of draught horses. The manner of the latter part of the curious process is
this. The animal who is to serve as the waggon lies down on his back, and
extending his four limbs as wide as he can, allows himself to be loaded
with hay; and those who are to be the draught horses trail him thus loaded
by the tail, taking care not to overset him. The task of thus serving as
the vehicle being evidently the least enviable part of the business, is
taken by every one of the party in turn.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXXVI.

Crab Fishing.


The following is an instance of the extraordinary cunning manifested by
the Racoon. It is fond of crabs, and when in quest of them, will stand by
the side of a swamp, and hang its tail over into the water; the crabs,
mistaking it for food, are sure to lay hold of it; and as soon as the
beast feels them pinch, he pulls them out with a sudden jerk. He then
takes them to a little distance from the water's edge; and in devouring
them, is careful to get them crossways in his mouth, lest he should suffer
from their nippers.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXXVII.

Rare Honesty.


A mastiff dog, who owed more to the bounty of a neighbour than to his
master, was once locked by mistake in the well-stored pantry of his
benefactor for a whole day, where milk, butter, bread, and meat, within
his reach, were in abundance. On the return of the servant to the pantry,
seeing the dog come out, and knowing the time he had been confined, she
trembled for the devastation which her negligence must have occasioned;
but on close examination, it was found that the honest creature had not
tasted of anything, although, on coming out, he fell on a bone that was
given to him, with all the voraciousness of hunger.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXXVIII.

Of Two Evils Choosing the Least.


A French dog was taught by his master to execute various commissions, and
among others, to fetch him victuals from a restaurant in a basket. One
evening when the dog was returning to his master thus furnished, two other
dogs, attracted by the savoury smell issuing from the basket, determined
to attack him. The dog put his basket on the ground, and set himself
courageously against the first that advanced against him; but while he was
engaged with the one, the other ran to the basket, and began to help
himself. At length, seeing that there was no chance of beating both dogs,
and saving his master's dinner, he threw himself between his two
opponents, and without further ceremony, quickly despatched the remainder
of the victuals himself, and then returned to his master with the empty
basket.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXXIX.

Snake Destroyers.

The Indian ichneumon, a small creature in appearance between the weasel
and the mangoose, is of infinite use to the natives from its inveterate
enmity to snakes, which would otherwise render every footstep of the
traveller dangerous. This diminutive creature, on seeing a snake ever so
large, will instantly dart on it, and seize it by the throat, provided he
finds himself in an open place, where he has an opportunity of running to
a certain herb, which he knows instinctively to be an antidote against the
poison of the bite, if he should happen to receive one. A gentleman
visiting the island of Ceylon saw the experiment tried in a closed room,
where the ichneumon, instead of attacking his enemy, did all in his power
to avoid him. On being carried out of the house, however, and laid near
his antagonist in the plantation, he immediately darted at the snake, and
soon destroyed it. It then suddenly disappeared for a few minutes, and
again returned, as soon as it had found the herb and ate it.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXXX.

Monkey versus Snake.


The monkeys in India, knowing by instinct the malignity of the snakes, are
most vigilant in their destruction; they seize them when asleep by the
neck, and running to the nearest flat stone, grind down the head by a
strong friction on the surface, frequently looking at it, and grinning at
their progress. When convinced that the venomous fangs are destroyed, they
toss the reptiles to their young ones to play with, and seem to rejoice in
the destruction of their common enemy.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXXXI.

Musical Mice.


"One rainy winter evening, as I was alone in my chamber," relates an
American gentleman, "I took up my flute and commenced playing. In a few
minutes my attention was directed to a mouse that I saw creeping from a
hole, and advancing to the chair in which I was sitting. I ceased playing,
and it ran precipitately back to its hole; I began again shortly
afterwards, and was much surprised to see it reappear, and take its old
position. The appearance of the little animal was truly delightful; it
couched itself on the floor, shut its eyes, and appeared in ecstasy; I
ceased playing, and it instantly disappeared again. This experiment I
repeated frequently with the same success, observing that it was always
differently affected, as the music varied from the slow and plaintive, to
the brisk or lively. It finally went off, and all my art could not entice
it to return."

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXXXII.

Soliciting Succour.


A party of a ship's crew being sent ashore on a part of the coast of
India, for the purpose of cutting wood for the ship, one of the men having
strayed from the rest was greatly frightened by the appearance of a large
lioness, who made towards him; but on her coming up, she lay down at his
feet, and looked very earnestly first at him, and then at a tree a short
distance off. After repeating her looks several times, she arose, and
proceeded onwards to the tree, looking back several times, as if wishing
the man to follow her. At length he ventured, and coming to the tree, he
perceived a huge baboon with two young cubs in her arms, which he supposed
were those of the lioness, as she couched down like a cat, and seemed to
eye them very steadfastly. The man being afraid to ascend the tree,
decided on cutting it down, and having his axe with him, he set actively
to work, when the lioness seemed most attentive to what he was doing. When
the tree fell, she sprung upon the baboon, and after tearing him in
pieces, she turned round and licked the cubs for some time. She then
turned to the man and fawned round him, rubbing her head against him in
great fondness, and in token of her gratitude for the service he had done
her. After this, she took the cubs away one by one, and the man returned
to the ship.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXXXIII.

A Charitable Canary.


A pair of goldfinches who had the misfortune to be captured, together with
their nest and six young ones, were placed in a double cage, with a pair
of canaries, which had a brood of young; there was a division of wirework
between the cages. At first the goldfinches seemed careless about their
young ones; but the cock canary, attracted by their cries, forced itself
through a flaw in the wires, and began to feed them; an operation which it
continued regularly, until the goldfinches undertook the office
themselves, and rendered the humanity of the canary no longer necessary.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXXXIV.

Pugnacity.


The town of Bindrabund in India is in high estimation with the pious
Hindoos, who resort to it from the most remote parts of the empire. The
town is surrounded by groves of trees, which are the residence of
innumerable apes, whose propensity to mischief is increased by the
religious respect paid to them in honour of a divinity of the Hindoo
mythology, who is represented as possessing the body of an ape. In
consequence of this superstition, such numbers of these animals are
supported by the voluntary contributions of pilgrims, that no one dares to
resist or ill-treat them. Hence, access to the town is often difficult;
for should one of the apes take a dislike to any unlucky traveller, he is
sure to be assailed by the whole community, who follow him with all the
missile weapons they can collect, as pieces of bamboo, stones, and dirt,
making at the same time a most hideous howling. Of the danger attending a
meeting with enemies of this description, the following is a melancholy
instance. Two young cavalry officers, belonging to the Bengal army, having
occasion to pass this way, were attacked by a body of apes, at whom one of
the gentlemen inadvertently fired. The alarm instantly drew the whole
body, with the fakeers, out of the place, with so much fury, that the
officers, though mounted upon elephants, were compelled to seek their
safety in flight; and in endeavouring to pass the Jumna, they both
perished.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXXXV.

A Carrier's Dog.


A carrier on his way to a market town had occasion to stop at some houses
by the road side, in the way of his business, leaving his cart and horse
upon the public road, under the protection of a passenger and a trusty
dog. Upon his return he missed a led horse, belonging to a gentleman in
the neighbourhood, which he had tied to the end of the cart, and likewise
one of the female passengers. On inquiry he was informed that during his
absence the female, who had been anxious to try the mettle of the pony,
had mounted it, and that the animal had set off at full speed. The carrier
expressed much anxiety for the safety of the young woman, casting at the
same time an expressive look at his dog. Oscar observed his master's eye,
and aware of its meaning, instantly set off in pursuit of the pony, which
coming up with soon after, he made a sudden spring, seized the bridle, and
held the animal fast. Several people having observed the circumstance, and
the perilous situation of the girl, came to relieve her. Oscar, however,
notwithstanding their repeated endeavours, would not quit his hold, and
the pony was actually led into the stable with the dog, till such time as
the carrier should arrive. Upon the carrier entering the stable, Oscar
wagged his tail in token of satisfaction, and immediately relinquished the
bridle to his master.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXXXVI.

Humane Society.


A large colony of rooks had resided many years in a grove on the banks of
a river. One serene evening the idle members amused themselves with
chasing each other through endless mazes, and in their flight they made
the air sound with an infinitude of discordant noises. In the midst of
these playful exertions it unfortunately happened that one rook, by a
sudden turn, struck his beak against the wing of another. The sufferer
instantly fell into the river. A general cry of distress ensued. The birds
hovered with every expression of anxiety over their distressed companion.

Animated by their sympathy, and perhaps by the language of counsel known
to themselves, he sprang into the air, and by one strong effort reached
the point of a rock that projected into the river. The joy became loud and
universal; but, alas! it was soon changed into notes of lamentation, for
the poor wounded bird, in attempting to fly towards his nest, dropped
again into the river and was drowned, amid the moans of his whole
fraternity.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXXXVII.

Fox Chasing.


During a fox hunt, Reynard, being hard pressed, was reduced to the
necessity of taking refuge up a chimney of a hothouse. He was followed by
one of the hounds, who, passing through a flue upwards of fifty feet in
length, came out at the top of the chimney, but missed Reynard in its
murky recess. By this time a number of people were collected at the top of
the chimney, who let down a terrier, who soon made him come in view,
holding fast by his brush.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXXXVIII.

Escape of Jengis Khan.


The Mogul and Kalmuc Tartars attribute to the white owl the preservation
of Jengis Khan, the founder of their empire; and they pay it on that
account almost divine honours. The prince, with a small army, happened to
be surprised and put to flight by his enemies. Forced to seek concealment
in a coppice, an owl settled on the bush under which he was hid. At the
sight of this animal the prince's pursuers never thought of searching the
spot, conceiving it impossible that such a bird would perch where any
human being was concealed. Jengis escaped, and ever after his countrymen
held the white owl sacred, and every one wore a plume of its feathers on
his head. The Kalmucs continue the custom to this day, at all their great
festivals; and some tribes have an idol in the form of an owl, to which
they fasten the real legs of this bird.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE LXXXIX.

A Refugee Squirrel.


A squirrel, whose bad luck it was to be captured, was lodged for safe
custody in a trap used for taking rats alive. Here he remained for several
weeks, till at length, panting for liberty, he contrived to make his
escape through a window, and repaired once more to his native fields. The
family in which he had been a sportive inmate, were not a little vexed at
the loss of their little favourite, and the servant was ordered in the
evening of the same day to remove the trap, that they might no longer be
reminded of their loss; but on proceeding to discharge his duty, he found
to his surprise that the squirrel, all wet and ruffled by the storm, had
reassumed his station, and again taken up his lodgings in a corner of the
trap.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XC.

Retaliation.


A wild stork was brought by a farmer into his poultry yard to be the
companion of a tame one, which he had long kept there; but the tame stork,
disliking a rival, fell upon the poor stranger, and beat him so
unmercifully that he was compelled to take wing, and with some difficulty
escaped. About four months afterwards, however, he returned to the poultry
yard, recovered of his wounds, and attended by three other storks, who no
sooner alighted, than they all together fell upon the tame stork, and
killed him.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XCI.

A Newsman Extraordinary.


One of the carriers of a large newspaper having become indisposed, his son
took his place; but not knowing the subscribers he was to supply, he took
for his guide a dog which had usually attended his father. The animal
trotted on a-head of the boy, and stopped at every door where the paper
was in use to be left, without making a single omission or mistake.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XCII.

The Bear Cubs.


A female bear, with two cubs, approached near a whaler, and was shot. The
cubs not attempting to escape, were taken alive. These animals, though at
first evidently very unhappy, became at length in some measure reconciled
to their situation, and being tolerably tame, were allowed occasionally to
go at large about the deck. While the ship was moored to a floe, a few
days after they were taken, one of them having a rope fastened round his
neck, was thrown overboard. It immediately swam to the ice, got upon it,
and attempted to escape. Finding itself, however, detained by the rope, it
endeavoured to disengage itself in the following ingenious way. Near the
edge of the floe was a crack in the ice of considerable length, but only
eighteen inches or two feet wide, and three or four feet deep. To this
spot the bear turned; and when, on crossing the chasm, the bight of the
rope fell into it, he placed himself across the opening; then suspending
himself by his hind feet, with a leg on each side, he dropped his head and
most part of his body into the chasm; and with a foot applied to each side
of the neck, attempted for some minutes to push the rope over his head.
Finding this scheme ineffectual, he removed to the main ice, and running
with great impetuosity from the ship, gave a remarkable pull on the rope;
then going backward a few steps, he repeated the jerk. At length, after
repeated attempts to escape this way, every failure of which he announced
by a significant growl, he yielded himself to his hard necessity, and lay
down on the ice in angry and sullen silence.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XCIII.

Noble Perseverance.


Elephants were, of old, employed in India in the launching of ships. It is
related of one, that, being directed to force a very large vessel into the
water, the work proved superior to its strength; his master, with
sarcastic tone, bid the keeper take away the lazy beast, and bring
another: the poor animal instantly repeated his efforts, fractured his
skull, and died on the spot.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XCIV.

The Catcher Caught.


During a sudden inundation of the Rhine, a hare, unable to escape through
the water to an eminence, climbed up a tree. One of the boatmen rowing
about to assist the unfortunate inhabitants, observing puss, rowed up to
the tree, and mounted it, eager for the game, without properly fastening
his boat. The terrified hare, on the approach of its pursuer, sprang from
the branch into the boat, which thus set in motion floated away, leaving
its owner in the tree in dread of being washed away by the current. After
several hours' anxiety, he was perceived, and taken off by some of his
companions.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XCV.

Deceiving the Fowler.


A young pointer, out with his master hunting, ran on a brood of very small
partridges. The old bird cried, fluttered, and ran trembling along just
before the dog's nose, till she had drawn him to a considerable distance;
when she took wing and flew farther off, but not out of the field. On this
the dog returned nearly to the place where the young ones lay concealed in
the grass; which the old bird no sooner perceived, than she flew back
again, settled first before the dog's nose, and a second time acted the
same part, rolling and tumbling about till she drew off his attention from
the brood, and thus succeeded in preserving them.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XCVI.

Old Habits.


An eminent Scotch lawyer, having cause to visit London, decided to perform
the journey on horseback in preference to posting, for this was before the
days of railways. He therefore purchased a horse before starting, and on
his arrival at the metropolis, following the usual custom, disposed of his
nag, deciding to purchase another for the return journey. When he had
completed his business, and had decided to set out for home, he went to
Smithfield to purchase a horse. About dusk, a handsome horse was offered
to him at so cheap a rate, that he was led to suspect the animal to be
unsound; but as he could discover no blemish he became the purchaser. Next
morning he set out on his journey; his horse had excellent paces, and the
first few miles, while the road was well frequented, our traveller spent
in congratulating himself on his good fortune. On Finchley Common the
traveller met a clergyman driving a one-horse chaise. There was nobody
within sight, and the horse by his manoeuvre plainly intimated what had
been the profession of his former master. Instead of passing the chaise,
he laid his counter close up to it, and stopped it, having no doubt that
his rider would embrace so fair an opportunity of exercising his vocation.
The clergyman, under the same mistake, produced his purse unasked, and
assured the inoffensive and surprised horseman that it was unnecessary to
draw his pistol. The traveller rallied his horse, with apologies to the
gentleman, whom he had unwillingly affrighted, and pursued his journey.
The horse next made the same suspicious approach to a coach, from the
windows of which a blunderbuss was levelled, with denunciations of death
and destruction to the rider, who was innocent of all offence in deed or
word. In short, after his life had been once or twice endangered by the
suspicions to which his horse's conduct gave rise, and his liberty as
often threatened by peace officers, who were disposed to apprehend him as
a notorious highwayman, he found himself obliged to part with the animal
for a mere trifle, and to purchase at a dearer rate a horse of less
external figure and action, but of better moral habits.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XCVII.

A Philosophic Cat.


A young cat, which sometimes was permitted the indulgence of taking her
place in the domestic circle, upon the carpet before the fire in the
parlour, one day came in when one of the party was spinning upon a line
wheel. Having never seen such a thing before, she became extremely alarmed
by its appearance and motion. She couched down in an attitude of fear and
of investigation; and yet at such a distance as would admit of a speedy
retreat if it should prove to be alive, and an enemy. She crept slowly all
along the wheel, with her eyes steadily fixed on it, and with a very
singular expression of countenance, till at length, not being able to
satisfy herself, she retreated towards the door, impatiently waiting to
make her escape; which she did the moment it was in her power, with great
precipitation.

The next morning, when she came into the room, the wheel then standing
still, she advanced courageously towards it, and after an apparently
careful examination, walking all round, ventured upon the further
experiment of endeavouring to ascertain with her paw whether there was
really anything to be apprehended from it. Still not finding any motion,
our philosopher of the Newtonian school, satisfied that she had nothing to
fear, seated herself quietly by the fire; and the next time she saw it in
motion, she sprang gaily forward, and enjoyed her triumph, by playing with
the object of her former terror.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XCVIII.

An Ass Cast Away.


An ass, belonging to a captain in the Royal Navy, then at Malta, was
shipped on board a frigate, bound from Gibraltar for that island. The
vessel struck on some sands off the Point de Gat, and the ass was thrown
overboard, in the hope that it might possibly be able to swim to the land;
of which, however, there seemed but little chance, for the sea was running
so high, that a boat which left the ship was lost. A few days after, when
the gates of Gibraltar were opened in the morning, the guard were
surprised by Valiant, as the ass was called, presenting himself for
admittance. On entering, he proceeded immediately to the stable of a
merchant, which he had formerly occupied. The poor animal had not only
swam safely to the shore, but without guide, compass, or travelling map,
had found his way from Point de Gat to Gibraltar, a distance of more than
two hundred miles, through a mountainous and intricate country,
intersected by streams, which he had never traversed before, and in so
short a period, that he could not have made one false turn.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE XCIX.

Honours Paid to Living and Departed Worth.


The people of Athens, when they had finished the temple called
_Hecatompedon_, set at liberty the beasts of burden that had been chiefly
employed in that work, suffering them to pasture at large, free from any
further service. It is said that one of these afterwards came of its own
accord to work, and putting itself at the head of the labouring cattle,
marched before them to the citadel. The people were pleased with this
spontaneous action, and made a decree that the animal should be kept at
the public charge as long as it lived. Many have shown particular marks of
regard in burying animals which they had cherished and been fond of. The
graves of Cimon's mares, with which he thrice conquered at the Olympic
games, are still to be seen near his own tomb. Xanthippus, whose dog swam
by the side of his galley to Salamis, when the Athenians were forced to
abandon their city, afterwards buried it with great pomp upon a
promontory, which to this day is called the _Dog's Grave_. In Pliny, we
have an amusing account of a superb funeral ceremony, which took place
during the reign of Claudius; in which the illustrious departed was no
other than a crow, so celebrated for its talents and address, that it was
looked upon as a sort of public property. Its death was felt as a national
loss; the man who killed it was condemned to expiate the crime with his
own life; and nothing less than a public funeral could, as it was thought,
do justice to its memory. The remains of the bird were laid on a bier,
which was borne by two slaves; musicians went before it, playing mournful
airs; and an infinite number of persons, of all ages and conditions,
brought up the rear of the melancholy procession.

[Illustration]



ANECDOTE C.

A Child Saved.


A shepherd, in one of his excursions to look after his flock, took with
him one of his children, an infant of three years old. After traversing
his pastures for some time, attended by his dog, he found it necessary to
ascend a summit at some distance, to obtain a more extensive view of his
range. As the ascent was too fatiguing for the child, he left him on a
small plain at the bottom, with strict injunctions not to stir from it
till his return. Scarcely, however, had he gained the summit, when the
horizon was darkened by an impenetrable mist. The anxious father instantly
hastened back to find his child; but owing to the unusual darkness, he
missed his way. After a fruitless search of many hours, he discovered that
he had reached the bottom of the valley, and was near his own cottage. To
renew the search that night was equally fruitless and dangerous; he was
therefore compelled to go home, although he had lost both his child and
his dog, who had attended him faithfully for many years. Next morning, by
break of day, the shepherd, accompanied by a band of his neighbours, set
out in search of his child; but after a day of fatigue, he was obliged to
return home disappointed. He found that the dog which he had lost the day
before had been to the cottage, and on receiving a piece of cake, had
instantly gone off again. For several successive days the shepherd renewed
the search, and on his return in the evening he found that the dog had
been home, and, on receiving his usual allowance of cake, had instantly
disappeared. Struck with this singular circumstance, he remained at home
one day; and when the dog, as usual, departed with his piece of cake, he
resolved to follow him, and find out the cause of this strange procedure.
The dog led the way to a cataract at some distance from the spot where the
shepherd had left his child. Down a rugged and almost perpendicular
descent the dog began, without hesitation, to make his way, and at last
disappeared by entering into a cave, the mouth of which was almost level
with the torrent. The shepherd with difficulty followed; but, on entering
the cave, what were his emotions, when he beheld his infant eating with
much satisfaction the cake which the dog had just brought him, while the
faithful animal stood by, eyeing his young charge with the utmost
complacency! The child had apparently wandered to the brink of the
precipice, and then either fallen or scrambled down till he reached the
cave. The dog had traced him to the spot; and afterwards prevented him
from starving, by giving up to him his own daily allowance. He appears
never to have quitted the child by night or day, except when it was
necessary to go for food; and then he was always seen running at full
speed to and from the cottage.

[Illustration]


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translation, optical character recognition or other areas where access to a
large amount of text is helpful, please contact us. We encourage the use of
public domain materials for these purposes and may be able to help.

+ Keep it legal -  Whatever your use, remember that you are responsible for
ensuring that what you are doing is legal. Do not assume that just because
we believe a book is in the public domain for users in the United States,
that the work is also in the public domain for users in other countries.
Whether a book is still in copyright varies from country to country, and we
can't offer guidance on whether any specific use of any specific book is
allowed. Please do not assume that a book's appearance in Doctrine Publishing
ISYS search  means it can be used in any manner anywhere in the world.
Copyright infringement liability can be quite severe.

About ISYS® Search Software
Established in 1988, ISYS Search Software is a global supplier of enterprise
search solutions for business and government.  The company's award-winning
software suite offers a broad range of search, navigation and discovery
solutions for desktop search, intranet search, SharePoint search and embedded
search applications.  ISYS has been deployed by thousands of organizations
operating in a variety of industries, including government, legal, law
enforcement, financial services, healthcare and recruitment.



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