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If they did, they must separate, and lose the wind, which is not their system.
They do not run well up hill when fat, but they will beat any dog in such oblique paths as I have mentioned. The hardness and sharp edges of their hoofs gives them great tenacity, and prevents them suffering from the stones; whilst a dog, having no fence against injury, is obliged to slacken his pace.
The bone also of a deer's foot is small and particularly hard; it is this peculiar construction which renders the animal as strong as he is fleet. The support and strength of the joints of the feet of all animal bodies, according to Sir E. Home, depends less upon their own ligaments than upon the action of the muscles whose tendons pass over them. “This fact," he says, “was strongly impressed on my mind in the early part of my medical education, by seeing a deer which leaped over the highest fences, and the joints of whose feet, when examined, were as rigid, in every other direction but that of their motion, as the bone itself; but when the tendon Achilles, which passed over the joint, was divided, with a view to keep the animal from running away, the foot could readily be moved in any direction, the joint no longer having the smallest firmness.”
Stags, although they have frequent and ferocious combats amongst their own species during the rutting season, have been seldom known to attack men in any other way than in self-defence. No instance of the sort ever occurred to me, nor to Mr. John Crerer, who shot sixty years in the forest of Atholl. Once, indeed, he incurred a sort of rebuff by his own imprudence; being a very powerful man, he got behind a stag which was at bay in Glenmore, and thought it advisable to take hold of his hind leg, and endeavour to throw him over; but, when about to do so, the animal saluted him with both his hind legs, and with such effect, that one of his hoofs broke his watch, and the other struck him in the mouth, knocked out one of his teeth, and sent him sprawling on his back to the edge of the water. The only instance I ever heard of in that forest, of an offensive assault on man, was recounted to me by the late Duke of Atholl. His Grace had wounded a hart, and one of the deer-hounds flew at him and seized hold of his ear; when the Duke came up, the hart sprung forward with his head down (the dog still hanging to his ear), and was rushing to the attack,
but his Grace escaped the danger by sending a ball through his forehead. This, as I have said, is the only instance I ever heard of an offensive attack upon men by deer upon the wild mountains; and it must be observed, that the animal here in question was rendered furious by the dog, and by the pain of his wound. It is, however, at all times dangerous to approach a wounded deer too nearly, for, in selfdefence, he would not hesitate to kill any living thing that came within reach of his pointed antlers. An instance is recorded of a red-deer having beat off a tiger, which was set loose upon it in an inclosed arena at the instance of William, Duke of Cumberland. But, if stags in such wild regions stand in awe of man, they have not always the same respect when they become more familiar with him.
Some years ago,” says Gilpin, a stag in the New Forest, pressed by the hunters, and just entering a thicket, was opposed by a peasant, who foolishly, with his arms extended, attempted to turn him. The stag held his course, and, darting one of his antlers into the man, carried him off some paces, sticking upon his horn. The man was immediately conveyed to Lymington, where he lay dangerously ill for some time, but at length recovered. I have heard, also, that when the Duke of Bedford was lord-warden of the forest, his huntsman had a horse killed under him, by a stag, which he crossed in the same imprudent manner.” We read,” (saith the Editor of the ‘Noble Art of Venerie,') “ of an emperor named Batels, who had done great deedes of chivalrie in his country, and yet was nevertheless slayne with a hart in breaking of a bay."
On the Continent, deer-driving on the grandest scale is still occasionally practised, the game of a whole province being surrounded by the marshalled peasantry of a prince or noble, and forced by the gradual narrowing of the circle to some central spot for promiscuous slaughter. Similar princely battues were formerly common, when the game was more plentiful and cultivation rarer, both in England and Scotland. As one instance among many of these which we find recorded in the old chronicles, and as a proof of the determined resolution of the stag when pushed to extremity, I may be permitted to quote the following account.
Spottiswoode mentions in his History, “That Queen Mary took the sport of hunting the deer in the forest of Mar and Atholl, in the year 1563,” of which Barclay, in his · Defence of Monarchical Government,' gives the following particulars :
" The Earl of Atholl prepared for her Majesty's reception by sending out about two thousand Highlanders to gather the deer from Mar, Badenoch, Murray, and Atholl, to the district he had previously appointed. It occupied the Highlanders for several weeks in driving the deer, to the amount of two thousand, besides roes, does, and other game.
“ The Queen, with her numerous attendants, and a great concourse of the nobility, gentry, and people, were assembled at the appointed glen, and the spectacle much delighted her Majesty, particularly as she observed that such a numerous herd of deer seemed to be directed in all their motions by one stately animal among them; they all walked, stopped, or turned as he did ; they all followed him. The Queen was delighted to see all the deer so attentive to their leader; and
her pointing it out to the Earl of Atholl, who knew the nature of the animal well, having been accustomed to it from his youth, he told her that they might all come to be frightened enough by that beautiful beast; * For,' said he, 'should that stag in the front, which your Majesty justly admires so much, be seized with any fit of fury or of fear, and rush down from the side of the hill, where you see him stand, to this plain, then would it be necessary for every one of us to provide for the safety of your Majesty, and for our own; all the rest of those deer would infallibly come with him as thick as possibly they could, and make their way over our bodies to the mountain that is behind us.'
“ This information occasioned the Queen some alarm, and what happened afterwards proved it not to be altogether without cause; for her Majesty having ordered a large fierce dog to be let loose on a wolf that appeared, the leading deer, as we may call him, was terrified at the sight of the dog, turned his back, and began to fly thither whence they had come; all the other deer instantly followed.
They were surrounded on that şide by a line of Highlanders, but well did they know the power of this close phalanx of deer, and at speed; and therefore they yielded, and opposed no resistance; and the only means left of saving their lives was to fall flat on the heath in the best posture they could, and allow the deer to run over them. This
method they followed, but it did not save them from being wounded; and it was announced to the Queen that two or three men had been trampled to death.
In this manner the deer would have all escaped, had not the huntsmen, accustomed to such events, gone after them, and with great dexterity headed and turned a detachment in the rear; against these the Queen's staghounds and those of the nobility were loosed, and a successful chase ensued. Three hundred and sixty deer were killed, five wolves, and some roes; and the Queen and her party returned to Blair delighted with the sports.'
When the country was partially covered with wood, the forests were driven, and the sportsmen occupied passes where they took their chance of sport; and this method is still occasionally resorted to in the forest of Glengarry, and in other places. But, generally speaking, the system has given way to the more exciting amusement of deer-stalking.
WORDSWORTH. It needs scarcely be said, that an Epitaph presupposes a Monument, upon which it is said to be engraven. Almost all nations have wished that certain external signs should point out the places where their dead are interred. Among savage tribes, unacquainted with letters, this has mostly been done by rude stones placed near the graves, or by mounds of earth raised over them. This custom proceeded obviously from a twofold desire; first, to guard the remains of the deceased from irreverent approach, or from savage violation : and, secondly, to preserve
"Never any," says Camden, “neglected burial, but some savage nations; as the Bactrians, which cast their dead to the dogs; some varlet philosophers, as Diogenes, who desired to be devoured of fishes; some dissolute courtiers, as Mæcenas, who was wont
“ Non tumulum curo; sepelit natura relictos.”
I’m careless of a grave :-Nature her dead will save.
As soon as nations had learned the use of letters, epitaphs were inscribed upon these monuments, in order that their intention might be more surely and adequately fulfilled. I have derived monuments and epitaphs from two sources of feeling: but these do, in fact, resolve themselves into one. The invention of epitaphs, Weever, in his discourse of funeral monuments, says rightly,
proceeded from the presage or fore-feeling of immortality, implanted in all men naturally, and is referred to the scholars of Linus, the Theban poet, who flourished about the year of the world two thousand seven hundred; who first bewailed this Linus their master, when he was slain, in doleful verses, then called of him Elina, afterwards Epitaphia, for that they were first sung at burials, after engraved upon the sepulchres."
And, verily, without the consciousness of a principle of immortality in the human soul, man could never have had awakened in him the desire to live in the remembrance of his fellows: mere love, or the yearning of kind towards kind, could not have produced it. The dog or horse perishes in the field, or in the stall, by the side of his companions, and is incapable of anticipating the sorrow with which his surrounding associates shall bemoan his death or pine for his loss ; he cannot preconceive this regret, he can form no thought of it; and, therefore, cannot possibly have a desire to leave such regret or remembrance behind him. Add to the principle of love, which exists in the inferior animals, the faculty of reason which exists in man alone; will thé conjunction of these account for the desire ? Doubtless it is a necessary consequence of this conjunction; yet pot, I think, as a direct result, but only to be come at through an intermediate thought, viz., that of an intimation or assurance within us, that some part of our nature is imperishable. At least the precedence, in order of birth, of one feeling to the other, is unquestionable. If we look back upon the days of childhood, we shall find that the time is not in remembrance when, with respect to our own individual being, the mind was without this assurance; whereas, the wish to be remembered by our friends or kindred, after death, or even in absence, is, as we shall discover, a sensation that does not form itself till the social feelings have been developed, and the reason has connected itself with a wide range of objects. Forlorn, and cut off from communication with the best part of his nature, must, that man be, who should derive the sense of immortality, as it exists in the mind of a child, from the same un