Page images
PDF
EPUB

the volume, he retires to his private study, in some huge hollow oak, and there reflects and moralizes. The Indians of our western prairies know him better than any of the professional naturalists, and, I think, I have heard that they invite them to their talks. Certain it is, the Blackfeet are reported by travellers, to treat the Grizzly bear with profound respect, and have often offered their most beautiful maidens for marriage to them, with a view to improve the blood of the tribe by a cross; but this story is not well authenticated. The Grizzly bear, besides, is almost too violent in his affection. His kisses munch. His pressure would take the breath out of the body of every woman but one, whom I wot of. Although he may be called, by curtesy, a gentleman, yet is he a tyrant.

Ursus Maritimus, or the white bear, Arctician, is a specimen of majesty. He rules the poles, and builds his castles upon icebergs. His fields are snow-drifts, and his crops are seals and sea-horses. The wind-lashed sea breeds for his cubs their codfish, and throws upon his glacier furrows his welcome crop of wounded whales. Hardy, fearless, enterprising, he is monarch of the storm, king of the unknown Symnsonia-president of Ultima Thule.

Our own black bear has no pretensions to nobility. He is a republican, but a clever fellow. He is strong both in life and death. He can strike, scratch, and hug, equally well with his distant relatives; and when his guardian angel resigns him to fate, Adonis makes his hair shine with his grease ; Podagrosus and Rheumaticus rub their feet with his fat flanks ; Epicurus deliciates in his tender loin ; Amator wraps his mistress in his skin, and envelopes her hands in a muff cut from his hairy cold-defier; while, as with his own comforter, gloves, and cap, he manages the breath-icicled steeds over the nivoseous and gelid road, she thinks and feels him bear all

over.

Bear is a very "interesting individual."

interesting individual." Great things might be said of him. The publishers are not to blame for putting in that picture. I think it speaks for itself, and needs no illustration.

COLLINE OMANIA.

1

COLLINE OMANIA.

NO. I.

OF

R A M B L IN G R E MINISCENCES

ANCIENT HUNTERS.

[ocr errors]

-En age, segnes
Rumpe moras, vocat ingenti clamore Cithæron
Taygetique canes, domitrixque Epidaurus equorum,
Et vox assensu nemorum ingemminata remugit.”

Virg. Georg. 3,

“Hark away, hark away, hark away is the word to the sound of the horn, And echo, blithe echo, while echo, blithe echo makes jovial the morn.”

CHORUS TO BRIGHT PH@bus.

No; we will not look upon the hunters of Kentucky yet; the mighty dead of other days claim first our admiring contemplation. It will be good for us to look at their portraits in Time's old diorama—to see them face to face through History's faithful theodolite.

What an innumerable army ! Patriarchs, sages, kings, heroes, inspired, demigods, sacred, profane! Blessed is thy memory, O son of Cush, and thy name glorious, captain of the host, and father and beginner of all hunting! Of whom else doth the historian bear record, that he “was a mighty hunter before the Lord ?

Posterity hath not done justice to Nimrod. Even Josephus barely mentions him, and we are left entirely in the dark as to the character of his game and the weapons of his craft.

It is not vain, however, nor improper, as we hope, to speculate upon a matter which, to hunters, is a subject of such

Vol. 1.-14

« PreviousContinue »