Imágenes de página


have noihing to do. Our artention is him to procure a better ally than tha only engaged by the favage of the he had chosen. He had yet but little woods.

connection with his fellow. To join, While man continued thus an in now and then, in a hunting party was mate of the forest, it is possible he all the intercourse he knew. It was lirele might have fagacity to build hinfelf a more than such a league as is found 2. hut of boughs, which he might cover mong jackalls and other animals that with clods; and yet it is more pro. hunt in packs. Ideas of society, howebable, that while he continued the mere ver, by degrees took place. The dawnchild of nature, he was contented with ings of focial compact appeared. Man the fimple fhelter which Virgil above now threw off the brute, and thought it supposes his common morher furnish- good to leave his scattered tenements, ed, the imbowering thicket or the hol. and to assemble in hoards. The rudilow trunk; as suinmer or winter led ments of law were traced, and some him to prefer an open or a closer co rude fkerch of fubordination. In ear

Strabo speaks of certain Asia- neft he began now to shew his domitics, even fo late in the history of man nion. By fellowthip he had increased kind as the times of Pompey the his ftrength; the horse, the bullock, Great, who harboured, like birds, in and other animals were reclaimed from the tops of trees. And I think the the forest; some for social alliance, savages about Botany Bay are not re- and others for a less precarious supply presented by our late discoverers in a of food; while the shaggy tenants of much more improved condition. the forest, which were hostile to his

Man in this folitary state (for fcar. plans, began every where to give way, city of food forbade any enlarged ideas prowing only by night, and skulking of society) waged bat unequal war by day in such deep receíses as might with his brother favages the brures.wm beit fécure them from the formidable Most of them out(tripped him in speed, asoci-tion which had taken place. many of them contended with him in : Bur ftill his native forest was man's strength, and some nearly equalled him delight. Here, iri fome opening surin fagacity

runded with woods' the hoard first The human savage thus finding feitled. Here the firft attempts of arhimself hard put to it, even to defend chitecture were nrade; the krail was his own, might look round for allitt- laid out by rule and line, and the first ance. The dog, whose friendly man- draughts of regular defence were imaners might folicit his acquaintance, gined. Cæsar, with all his boasted was probably one of his firit affociates conqueits, found the : Gauls, the Briin those countries where dogs were to tons, and the Germans farce emer. be found. This union made a power: ging from this state of barbarism. His ful party in the forelt." The great ob- commentaries every where Mew them ject of it however was rather food to have been forest people ; retreating than conquest. The dog and his ma before him into their fastnesses, and fter were both carnivorous animals; impeding his march by felling timber and they foon began to gratify their in his way. The Britons, he expressappetites åt the expence of their fel- lý reils us, gave the name of a town low-brutes. The one conducting, and to a part of a forest which they had the other executing the plan, few crea fortified with a rampart and a ditch, tures could oppofe them.

But Cæsar saw the British town on. But man, from the beginning, was ly in time of war. Strabo gives us a an ambitious animal. Having filled picture of one in time of peace. his belly, he aspired after dominion. “refts, says he, were the only towns For this purpole it was necessary for “in use - among them, which were

65 formed

16 Fo

diftant parts.

* formed by cutting down a large circle single, attacks the whole. He is re% of wood, and erecting huts within ceived by a brigade of pointed spears, ç it, and sheds for cattle.” The same and foon overpowered; byt in tije author, afterwards describing a town bravery of his soul he dies without a of this kind, shews more exactly the wish to retreat. mode of fortifying it. It was the In the forests of Malabar and Benpractice, he tells us, to intermix and gall the tyger roams. Of this animal weave together the branches of thorny there are various kinds ; the largest trees, and strengthen them with stakes. and fiercest is called the royal tyger.

As the arts of civilization increased, Of all the favages of the forest'he is the man began to feel that the forest could most active, the most insidious, and not afford him all the conveniences he the most cruel. wished. Wants multiplied upon him The forests of India are inhabited which he could not indulge anuidit its also by the gentle and inoffensive ele. receffes. He chofe fertile situations phant. This animal commonly marches for tillage-- he neighbourhood of ric in social bands. The traveller hears vers for mills and manufactures--and them at a distance, as they traverse defcended to the fea-coat for com- the forest ; marking their rout by the merce, which he extended to the most crush and defolation of thickers and

intervening woods. He lifteps with Thus genial intercourse, and mutual aid,

out dismay, and even waits to be a Cheer'd what were else an universal spectator of the unwieldy procesữon as fade;

it moves along. Call'd nature from her ivy-mantled den,

The monkey inhabits the woods And softened human rock-work into men.

both of Africa and India; and, what

is singular, where he chuses to take When man became thus refined, we poffeflion he may be called the lord of leave him. When he relinquished the the forest. The lion himself gives forest, we liave no farther connection way--not being able to bear, as travelwith him. His haunts and habits are ders report, the incessant tricking of no longer the object of conjecture, that mischievous brute, whose agility They become the subject of recorded prevents correction. But the kuman history. To the fage historian there figure is of all others the object of his fore we now consigo him; and return highest derision. If such a phenome. to the forest, which at this day in most non appear in his domains, the whole parts of the world, where, any foreits fociety are called together by a whoop : remain, is left in poffeffion of the brute from curiofity they proceed to insocreation.

lence, chattering, grinning, and throw. Under the burning suns of Lybia, ing down fruit, cones, withered sticks, in the forefts of Zara and Bildulgerid, or any thing their fituation furnishes, the lordly lion reigns. Hé harbours Fire-arms can scarce repress them. In too in the woods of India ; but there fome forefts where the ape, the bahe is an ignoble brute, compared with boon, and other large fpecies of this the lion of Africa. The African lion disgusting tribe inhabit, the traveller is a beast of porivalled prowess ; no. must be well guarded to pass in fecuthing appalls him. From his dark re- rity. cesses in the forest he sometimes eyes :: In South-America, in the wide fo. the numerous caravan, confitting of rests of Brazil and Paraguay, along the men, horses, and camels, marching banks of the Amazon, the cougar, a fowly along the burning sands of Bar- fpecies of tyger, is the mot formidable ca. He laihes his tail, colle&s his animale Poireffed of Amphibious naRiength, and bounding forward, tho' ture, he planges into the river, and


carries his devastations beyond that in many parts, as well as his shoulders, mighty stream. Buffon relates, that with long sweeping bristles. Nor are he has been known to cross the sea in his gait, attitude, and motion, at all jo, large companies, between the contin- ferior to his form. This' beast, durent and the island of Cayenne; and, ing the three first years of his life, in the infancy of that colony, to have herds with the litter, among which kept it in constant alarms.

he was produced. He then is called In North America the moose-deer by forresters a beast of company. In his seems intitled to the appellation of fourth year he assumes the title of Lord of the forest; an animal repre- wild bazr-ranges the forest alone fented by many travellers as high as an becomes royal game--and at this day, elephant, and of a nature as gentle.- furnishes the chief amusement of half With stately tread he traverses the vast the princes of the empire, woods of fir; and crops the cones and

From the forests of the Pyrennees, pine-tops beyond the reach of any o. when winter rages, the familhed wolves ther animal. When the forest is co- rush down in troops. All the counvered with snow, and crusted over try is in arms, and the utmost vigilance with fruft, the wild American marks of men and dogs, can scarce repress hina for certain destruction. His feet such a torrent of invasion. sink deep in the faithlefs surface, and In the gloomy forests of Lapland, his flight is impeded; while his pure where the pine is covered wịth black fuers, mounted on snow-fhoes, attack mofs, the hardy rein-deer browzes. and retreat at pleasure, affailing him If he descend into the plain, his food with shot or arrows on every side, and differs only įn hue. With those two when he falls, half a township is em. kinds of mofs, the black and the white, ployed to drag him to their habita. the whole face of Lapland is discolourtions; where the noble carcase is re- ed; and when the diminutive Dative, ceived in triumph, and at once fül- of the country fees the wastes around pends the effects of famine. If food him abound with this femi vegetable, be plentiful he is hunted for his skin. he blesses his stars, and calls it luxus But though his nature is gentle, like ry. His tein-deer, fupported by this many other animals, he will turn upon cheerless pasturage, supplies him with his pursuer, if he be wounded. He every thing that nature wants. It fights with bis fore-feet. We have a gives him food-it gives him milk story well authenticated of a hunter, it gives him cloathing--and carries on whom 'a wounded moose-deer turn- him, wrapped in fur, and feated in his ed, he was found in the woods pound- fledge, with amazing velocity from one ed into a jelly : his very bones were desart to another. broken in pieces; and the deer, hay Thus most of the forests of the ing exhausted his fury, was found ly. earth became the possession of the brute ing dead befide him.

creation. In the forests of Sumatra, The woods of Germany nourish the we are told that wild beasts at this wild boar, a beast by no means among very day depopulate whole villages. In the most ignoble of the foreft. His other savage countries, man and beaft form, the shape of his head, his short are ftill joint-tenants ; yet, in general, erect ears, his tusks, his thick muscular even the barbarian is taught by exMoulders, adorned with bristles, and ample to leave the forest for a more the lightness of his hind quarters, lo convenient abode. contrary to the domestic hog, which But though man had deserted the is a round lump, are all highly pictu- forest as a dwelling, and had left it resque. Such also are his colour, a to be inhabited by beasts, it soon apgrilly brown ; and his coat, covered peared that he had no intention of


[ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors]

giving up his right of dominion over a and bulls.” To shelter beasts of the
it. In a course of ages, as population latter kind we know a forest must be
increased, he began to find it in bis' of some magnificence. These woods,
way. In one part, it occupied grounds contiguous even to the capital, contia
fit for his plough ; in another, for the nued close and thick-many ages after.
pafturage of his domestic cattle; and wards. Even so late as Henry VII's
in some parts it afforded shelter for time we are informed by Polidore Viru
his enemies. He foon fhewed the gil, thát, "" Tertia propemodum An-
beasts, they were only tenants at will. gliæ pars pecori, aut cervis, damis;
He began amain to lay about him with " capreolis (nam et ii quoque in ea para
his axe. The forest groaned ; and re- *funt, quæ ad feptentrionem eft) cu-
ceded from its ancient bounds. It is " niculifve nutriendis relicta eft inculta;
amazing what ravages he made in his « quippe palim sunt ejusmodi feraruni'
original habitation, through every a vivaria, feu roboraria, quæ lignis roo
quarter of the globe. The fable was boreis funt claufa : unde multa venas
realized ; man begged of the forest a «tio, qua fe nobiles cum primis exer:
handle to his hatchet, and when he cent."
haid obtained the boon, he used it in In this paffage the forest feems to
felling the whole.

be diftinguifhed from the park, which
Britain, like other countries, a- latter was fenced in those days with
böunded once in wood. When Caffic oak pales, as it is now.
balan, Caractacos, and Boadicia, de As Britain became more cultivated;
fended their country's rights, the coun- its woods of course receded. They
try itself was a fortress. An extensive gave way, as in other places, to the
plain was then as uncommon as a fo- plough, to pasturage, to ship-building,
reft is now. Fitz-Stephen, a monk to architecture, and all other objects
of Canterbury, in the time of Heory of human industry, in which timber is
II. tells us, that a large forest lay the principal material ; obtaining for
round London, “ in which were that reason, among the Romans, the
" woody groves, in the covers where, pointed appellation of materies,
“ of lurked bucks and does, wild boars,

Y ,

Letter from Dr Johnson to Mr James Elphinfon, on the death of his Mother.
Dear Sir,

ture has been paid. The business of OU havė, as I and by every life fummons us away from useless lent mother; and I hope you will not those virtues, of which we are lathink me incapable of partaking of menting our deprivation. The great your grief, I have a mother, now benefit which one friend can confer eighty-two years of age, whom there- upon another, is to guard, and incite , fore I must soon lose, unless it please and elevate his virtues. This your God, that she rather Thould mourn mother will still perfurm, if you

dili for me. I read the letters, in which you gently preserve the memory of her life, relate

your mother's death to Mrs and of her death: a life, so far as I Strachan ; and I think I do mself ho- learn, useful and wise, and innocent; nour, when I tell you that I read and a death refigned, peaceful and holy. them with tears. But tears are neither I cannot forbear to mention that nei. to me nor to you of any farther use, ther reason nor revelation denies you when once the tribute of na

to hope, that you may encrease her


happiness bry. - obeying her precepts; presence. If you write down minutes and that she may, in her present state; ly what you can remember of her look with pleasure upon every act of from your earliest years, you will virtue, to which her instructions or read it with great pleasure, and recxample have contributed. Whether ceive from it many hints of foothing this be more than a pleasing dream, or recollection, when time shall remove a just opinion of separate fpirits, is her yet farther from you, and your indeed of no great importance to us, grief shall be matured to yeneration. when we conlider ourselves as act. To this, however painful for the preing under the eye of God. . Yet sent, I canoot but advise you, as to a surely there is something pleasing in source of comfort and satisfacțion in the belief, that our separation from the time, to come: for all comfort, those whom we love, is merely cor- and all. satisfaction, is lincerely withporeal; and it may be a great incite. ed you by, ment to virtuous friendship, it it can Dear Sir, be made probable, that a union, which Your most obliged has received the divine approbation;

most obedient shall continue to eternity.

and most humble servant, There is one expedient, by which

SAM. JOHNSON you may in fome degree continue her Sept. 25, 1750.


Extract of a Letter from Lord Bolingbroke to Mons. Pouily de Champeaux,

with a Commentary, and Remarks. NFIN, mon cher Pouilly, dans « as Montaigne would perhaps choose

cette foule d'hommes que j'ai « to express himself, too frank and free pu connoitre, et dont j'ai cherché à " in its paces for me to need, with etudier l'esprit et le caractere, je n'en " you, the wrapping myself up in that ai vu que trois qui m'aiént

paru « false modesty, of which there is dignes qu'on leur confiát le soin de “ sometimes a neceffity for making a gouverner des nations. Notre amitié “ fhield against envy. I shall then est trop etroite, elle est, ainsi que le « tell you boldly, that these three mea ditoit Montaigné, trop libre et trop " are You; Myself, and Popt.” franche dans les allures, pour que je

To begin here with Bolingbroke; m'enveloppe avec yous de cette fausse it is, with truth, nothing but just to modestie, dont il faut quelquefois fe add to what has been elsewhere faia faire un bouclier contre l'envie. Je vous of him, that, in this opinion of him. dirai donc hardiment que ces trois self, he stands no exception to the hommes font Vous, Moi, et Pope, generality of mankind, ever practical

TRANSLATION, “My dear Friend, ly ftrangers to the divinely moral inamong the croud of men whom it junction of SELF KNOWLEDGE. It is

may have fallen in i my way to not that he is reprehensible here for s know, and whose understandings chat frankness of spirit with which, “ and characters I have endeavoured believing himself fully qualified for the

to study, I have not yet marked arduous talk of government, he con

out above THREE that appeared to fidentially to his frieod afferts that "me worthy of being trusted with claim, in difdain of the grimace of “ the care of governing nations. mock modesty, than which sheer im** Our friend hip is too intimate, and, pudence iif. li' is a thousand times less


« AnteriorContinuar »