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shout from Boucharville warned me that the fight was only commencing. "Gardez-vous, gardez-vous, monsieur; elle fonce encore," and on she furiously rushed at me. I had barely time to put on my copper cap, and as she rose on her hind legs, I fired, and sent my bullet through her heart. She doubled up, and rolled from the top to the bottom of the slope, where she expired with a choking growl. Boucharville now joined me, but we did not venture to approach the enemy until I had loaded, and we ascertained that she was safe dead by pelting sticks and stumps at the carcase. All this time my noble horse stood as firm as a rock; had he reared or shied, I should have been in a serious scrape.
I was greatly rejoiced at my good fortune. She proved a fine old bear, measuring seven and a half feet in length, with claws four and a half inches long. We immediately set to and skinned her, preserving the claws. I then brought up the horse, and laid the skin upon his back; he, strange to say, offering no resistance, nor evincing the slightest fear or objection to carry it— a most unusual thing, for horses in general are terrified at the smell of a bear, and I never saw one since that would allow me to throw a bearskin across his back.
Dauphin shot another little bear on the same occasion, and attacked a cub with a stick with a view to capturing him alive, but after a prolonged fight he was glad to give in, and leave the cub master of the field. The French hunters persuaded Mr. Palliser not to remain long in so dangerous a region as the Turtle Mountains, but he met with "Bar" again on the Great Missouri.
On reaching the little Missouri the weather looked gloomy and threatened rain, so Boucharville engaged to build a very comfortable" cabane." This experienced rover of mountains, woods, and prairies, was up to a thousand little expedients to obviate difficulties and alleviate inconveniences, and was doubly anxious to render me comfortable now that I had acceded to his wishes, and abandoned my hunting elysium, the "Montagne de Tortue." Leaving Dauphin to assist him and look after the horses, I went up the river with my double-barrelled gun to look for ducks; but they were very wild, and I bagged none. At length I came to the putrid carcase of a bull, and on the mud all around saw the tracks of a large old bear, some of which led from the carrion along a dry watercourse, and looked very fresh. I drew my shot charges, rammed down a couple of bullets, and followed the tracks over an undulating prairie, till at a distance I descried a very large bear walking leisurely along. I approached as near as I could without his perceiving me, and lying down, tried Dauphin's plan of imitating the lowing of a buffalo calf. On hearing the sounds, he rose up, displaying such gigantic proportions as almost made my heart fail me; I croaked again, when, perceiving me, he came cantering slowly up. I felt that I was in for it, and that escape was impossible, even had I declined the combat, so cocking both barrels of my Trulock, I remained kneeling until he approached very near, when I suddenly stood up, upon which the bear, with an indolent roaring grunt, raised himself once more upon his hind legs, and just at the moment when he was balancing himself previously to springing on me, I fired, aiming close under his chin: the ball passing through his throat, broke the vertebræ of the neck, and down he tumbled, floundering like a great fish out of water, till at length he reluctantly expired. I drew a long breath as I uncocked my left barrel, feeling right glad at the successful issue of the combat. I walked round and round my huge prize, surveying his proportions with great delight; but as it came on to rain, I was obliged to lose no time in skinning him. I got soaked through before I succeeded in removing his tremendous hide, and then found it too heavy for me to take away; so I was obliged to return to camp without the trophy of Aug.-VOL. XCVIII. NO. CCCXCII.
my conquest. It was dark when I arrived. Boucharville and Dauphin had built a most comfortable little hut of logs and bark, and having laid down the skins and spread our beds inside, with the saddles at our heads for pillows, and a good roaring fire outside at our feet, we fell heartily to our supper of elk meat and coffee.
A fifth and last grisly bear was shot at the mouth of the Little Missouri. After which, the time having arrived when the annual steamer came up the river, Mr. Palliser packed up his kettles, arms, and trophies of chase, and sailed away from the wild regions of the Far West, with all those feelings of regret which are invariably experienced when the simplicity of nature is exchanged for the artifices of society.
Gone, gone, unroof'd and gone,
The cottage walls stand tottering and lone;
To meet what the shrinking heart bears-
They little heed having no home to bless them,
She dwells with poverty's sanctifier,
Who chose from the poor his sheep
She is blessed, for none of our ills she shares
One of us is happy yet,
And can he who will dry up all human tears,
Our daily bread forget!
I strive, and strive against despair,
And wander, days and days;
The beasts are fed, the fowls of the air
But we are castaways!
I will turn the villain's hanger-on,
And be greatly fed-the poor man is nought,
He never starves who in crime is caught,
And they on crime's verge whom the laws neglect, How they batten and fatten with the world's respect. Great God that I thus repine, forgive!
It is hard for want to be just and live
Day after day in a cold world's blight,
With a withering heart, yet a conscience light,
At their clay brother's crushing woe,
Then twirl on the heel; and I turn away,
But none can tell, though many know
What the sinking heart, and the burning brow,
Fever behind, famine before,
No Christian opening to me a door!
BY SIR NATHANIEL.
No. V.-GEORGE WILLIAM CURTIS.
NOTHING had we heard of "Nile Notes" or its author, when our eye was "fixed" by a collection of mottoes imprinted on the fly-leaf. Anon we were fain to construe "Nile Notes" as signifying promissory notes, issued by a capitalist of substance, and paying something more than simple interest. The traveller who had chosen epigraphs of such a kind, was himself likely, we inferred, to indite a noticeable autograph. The bush he had hung out was so unlike the dry scrubby stump commonly in use, that, in spite of the adage, we drew up at his door, in the assurance of finding good wine within. Indeed, so fond is our admiration of Sir Thomas Browne, and so susceptible our ear to the musical pomp of his rhetoric, that we should probably have been won to read "Nile Notes" had its title-page glistened with none other motto than the old knight's stately, sonorous, mystically solemn sentence: "Canopus is afar off; Memnon resoundeth not to the sun; and Nilus heareth strange voices" -a sentence, by the way, which reminds us of the assurance of a ladyfriend, that she has often, in reading Sir Thomas, "felt a sense* from the organ-like grandeur of his style, before she fully comprehended it." Then again, there are mottoes from the Arabian Nights, and from Death's Jest Book, and the Sphinx Unriddled, and Browning's Paracelsus, and Werne's White Nile, and-not unaptly, for Mr. Curtis sometimes mouths it in almost imitative parade-from Ancient Pistol himself, who
Sings of Africa and golden joys.
Nor did a perusal of "Nile Notes" break its word of promise to the hope. It made us acquainted with a writer sometimes laboured and whimsical, but on the whole, rich in fancy, and lavish of his riches-master of a style glowing with the brilliancy of the region he depicts, and attuned to Memnonian resonances and the "strange voices" of Nilus. The stars of midnight are dear to him; to his spirit there is matter in the "silence and the calm of mute insensate things;" his ear loves to lean "in many a secret place;" and albeit a humorist and a "quiz," with the sharp speech at times of a man of the world, and a dash of the cynic in his composition, he is no stranger to that vacant and pensive mood when past impressions, greater and deeper than he knew, "flash upon that inward eye which is the bliss of solitude."
Sarcasm and rhapsody are so interfused in "Nile Notes," that one division of readers admires or abhors just those particular chapters or pages which another division abhors or admires. Lydia Languish is in ecstasies with the sentimental paragraphs, "love-laden with most subtle sweetness," or "fringed with brilliant and fragrant flowers," and breath
*As in Wordsworth's sublime dream of the Arab-in whose shell the poet 66 -Heard that instant in an unknown tongue, Which yet he understood, articulate sounds,
A loud prophetic blast of harmony."-Prelude. Book V.
ing an atmosphere of "silent, voluptuous sadness." Major Pendennis reads the satirical expositions of knavish dragomen and travelling Cockaigne, and swears the Howadji is a fellow after his own (Major P.'s) heart (un yevolTo!), and that there's no nonsense about the man, no bosh in him, sir.
Knavish dragomen and their knight-errant victims are sketched amusingly enough among these Nile Notables. So are the crew of the Ibis; its old grey Egyptian captain, who crouched all day long over the tiller with a pipe in his mouth, and looked like a heap of blankets, smouldering away internally, and emitting smoke at a chance orifice; brawny, one-eyed Seyd, a clumsy being in the ape stage of development -slightly sensual, and with ulterior views upon the kitchen drippingsand alas, developing backwards, becoming more baboonish and less human every day; Saleh or Satan, a cross between the porcupine and the wild cat; together with a little old-maidish Bedouin, "who told wonderful stories to the crew, and prayed endlessly," and other grisly mariners, all bad workers, and lazy exceedingly-familiarity with whom bred decided contempt, and convinced the Howadji, in spite of his prepossessions to the contrary, that there is fallacy in the fashion which lauds the Orient, and prophesies a renewed grandeur ("as if the East could ever again be as bright as at sunrise")-and that if you would enjoy Egypt, you must be a poet, not a philosopher (the Howadji is a cross of both)-must be a pilgrim of beauty, not of morals or politics, if you would realise your dream. "The spent summer re-blooms no more,' he says; "the Indian summer is but a memory and a delusion. The sole hope of the East is Western inoculation. The child must suckle the age of the parent, and even 'Medea's wondrous alchemy' will not restore its peculiar prime. If the East awakens, it will be no longer in the turban and red slippers, but in hat and boots. The West is the sea that advances for ever upon the shore-the shore cannot stay it, but becomes the bottom of the ocean. . . . Cairo is an English station to India, and the Howadji does not drink sherbet upon the Pyramids, but champagne." And thus he anticipates a speedy advent of the day when, under the sway of England or of Russia (after the lion and the polar bear have "shivered the desert silence with the roar of their struggle"), Father Ishmael shall be a sheikh of honour, but of dominion no longer, and sit turbaned in the chimney corner, while his hatted* heirs rule the houseand the children cluster around him, fascinated with his beautiful tradi
* Lamentable will it be if the Hat lasts a paramount fashion until that time of day-and a shame it will be to the arbiters of taste, to every living "Glass of Fashion and Mould of Form," if that monstrous device of ugliness and discomfort be allowed to displace the Turban. It will seem, if Turban be rejected for Hat, that the heads of men are thickened, rather than their thoughts widened, by the process of the suns. For we hold with the lively author of "Esthetics of Dress," that the Hat is one of the strangest vestimental anomalies of the nineteenth century "What a covering! what a termination to the capital of that pillar of the creation, Man! what an ungraceful, mis-shapen, useless, and uncomfortable appendage to the seat of reason-the brain-box! Does it protect the head from either heat, cold, or wet? Does it set off any natural beauty of the human cranium? Are its lines in harmony with, or in becoming contrast to, the expressive features of the face? Is it," &c., &c. In the single article of head-gear we should have hotly sympathised with that Disraelitish youth, of whom Charles Lamb asked, in the parting scramble for hats, what he had done with his turban?