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THE CHILD'S NATURAL HISTORY.
CHILD'S NATURAL HISTORY.
IN WORDS OF FOUR LETTERS.
WRITTEN AND ILLUSTRATED
A. L. BOND.
GEORGE ROUTLEDGE & SONS
9 LAFAYETTE PLACE
UNIFORM WITH THIS VOLUME.
PRICE, SIXTY CENTS EACH.
Mother Goose's Rhymes and Jingles. With
A Trap to Catch a Sunbeam,and other Stories.
With 6 Illustrations.
Things In-Doors. With 480 Illustrations.
Things Out-of-Doors. With 480 Illustrations.
Elizabeth, or the Exiles of Siberia. With 40
Peep of Day. With 12 Illustrations.
The Swiss Family Robinson. With 42 Illus-
Adventures of Baron Munchausen. With 6
Esop's Fables. With 50 Illustrations by
The Pilgrim's Progress. With 6 Illustrations.
The Vicar of Wakefield. With 8 Illustrations.
The Child's Natural History in Words of
Four Letters. With ioo Illustrations by
One Hundred Picture Fables with Rhymes.
Rasselas: Prince of Abyssinia. With 6 Illus-
Paul and Virginia. With 6 Illustrations.
Songs for Children. By Isaac Watts, D.D.
With 64 Illustrations.
Games and Sports for Boys. With go Illus-
GEORGE ROUTLEDGE & SONS,
g Lafayette Place, New York.
THIS little work has been written in the hope
of supplying a deficiency often felt by those en-
gaged in teaching very young children. Many
excellent little books, beginning in words of four
letters, change so soon to a larger number, that
there are really few which a child can amuse
himself by reading without help;-and few, also,
from which dictation lessons can be given at an
early age. Natural History is so interesting to all
children, that it has been thought that a simple
form of it might prove attractive, and give the
desire for a farther acquaintance with the subject.
A. L. BOND.
THE REIN DEER ..... .. * *.I
THE GOLD FISH .... .... .... 3
THE FOX . . 5
THE WORM . ..... .. .. .. 7
THE JAY . * 9
THE ASS. . ...... .... II
THE NEWT OR EFT . .... ..... 13
THE DOG . .. . 15
THE HAWK . . . 17
THE SEAL . . . . I19
THE BEAR . . . 21
THE OWL . . . 23
THE MOTH . . . 25
THE WOLF. . . . 27
THE GLOW WORM . . . .. 29
THE COW. . ... . ... 31
THE SEA GULL AND STAR FISH .. .. 33
THE TOM TIT. . . ... 35
THE LAMB . . . 37
THE RING DOVE. .. . 39
THE FROG AND TOAD. . ...... 41
THE ZEBU . . . 43
THE WASP ... . . 45
THE COD FISH. ............... 47
THE ROOK AND CROW . . .. 49
THE LAMA . . . .. 51
THE SWAN . . . 53
THE SILK WORM ................ 55
THE WREN. . . . . 57
THE LION . . . . 59
THE ANT .. . .. . 61
THE CARP, PIKE, AND EEL . . .. 63
THE HARE . . . . 65
THE LORY . . . . 67
THE MOLE . . . . 69
THE CRAB .. . . . 71
THE LYNX . . . . 73
THE PIG. . . . . 75
THE BEE. . ....... 77
THE CAT. .. . . . 79
THR WILD DUCK. . . .... .8I
RATS AND MICE. .. . .... 83
THE SLUG . . . ... 85
THE BLUE FOX. . . . 87
THE GNAT . . . . 89
THE LARK. .. . . 91
THE DEER . . . . 93
THE BAT. . . . . 95
THE SOLE . . . . 97
THE GOAT . ... . .99
THE REIN DEER.
IF you will look at the wood-cut at the top of this
page, you will see what a Rein Deer is like, and
what sort of a man a Lapp is. The Lapp does not
live near us; his home is in a very cold land, a
long way off. In that land, for one half of the
year, -the sun does not rise, and all that time it
is dark, and very cold, with deep snow and ice.
Then, when at last the sun does rise, he will not
set for the rest of the year, and all that time it is
day. When the dark time of the year is come,
and there is no sun, if the moon is at the full, it is
very nice for the Lapp to ride over the snow; for
the Rein Deer will draw him so fast that no one
can keep up with him, and will run on at this rate
for a long time. I can not tell you all the uses the
s THE REIN DEER.
Rein Deer are put to by the Lapp. They give
milk, and they are good to eat, and they will draw
a load a long way and very fast. When the Rein
Deer is dead, its skin is worn by the Lapp, and it
is also made into a roof for the huts, or into a tent
for him to live in. It is also cut into long thin
bits, and made into a kind of rope. The fat is
made into oil, to burn in a lamp, or to eat, or fry
fish in; and the hair is now and then made into
beds; but the Lapp does not like this kind of bed
so well as one made of the skin. The hoof, horn,
and bone of the Rein Deer are all used, also, in
many ways that I can not tell you of now.
At that time of the year when it is one long day,
a kind of gad-fly, or gnat, will bite the poor Rein
Deer so much, that the herd has to go up to some
hill, for this fly will only live in a low land. When
the dark part of the year is come, the Rein Deer
find a kind of moss to eat that will grow in the
The Lapp is very fond of his Rein Deer, and, ii
he is rich, has more than one herd of them; he is
sure to have four or five if he is ever so poor.
i"" -,- ~ V11
THE GOLD FISH.
LOOK; here is a bowl of Gold Fish in our hall.
I am very glad to see them here, for I like very
much to look at them as they swim up and down
in the vase, or bowl. We can put them into the
pond on the lawn, if we like, and, as long as it is
warm, they will live in it very well; but as soon as
it gets at all cold, they must be put back into the
bowl, and be kept in a room with a fire in it. Do
you 'see the fins at the side of the Fish? Each
4 THE GOLD FISH.
Fish has two fins on each side; the fins help it to
move, and act like the oars of a boat to push it on,
for, you know, fish have no legs, and can not walk.
By-and-bye, you will see that the Fish will give a
flap to his fins, and this will send him a long way
very fast; he may then want to turn, when he will
flap the fins on one side only; he will also flap his
tail, and this will help him on his way; his fins
help him to rise and sink also. If you go very
near, and look at the Fish, you will see a kind of
hole on each side of his face; this hole we call a
gill, and you will see it open and shut for the Fish
to take in air.
As the Fish have been in the bowl some days, I
dare say they will be glad of some food; but we
must not give them much, for Fish are not wise,
and will eat till they die, if they can get the food.
We must get a bit of meat, not so big as a nut, and
pull it to bits, and give the bits to the Fish, who
will then rise up, dash at the meat, and eat it.
JANE, j' girl who has the care of the hens at the
farm by the wood, has lost two hens and a duck
the last few days. She took a boy with her, and
went to see if a rat had been in the fowl pen, but
they saw no sign of one. They went all over the
farm yard to try and find out the fate of the poor
hens; at last, in the wire that had been put up to
keep the hens out of the wood, they came to a
part that was all torn down, so that a gap had been
made. Jane and the boy went into the wood, and
when they had gone a long way, far from any path,
they saw the head of the poor duck, and part of
the wing of a fowl: the wing was not far from a
deep dell, and in this dell a Fox had its hole, so
6 THE FOX.
that they were at no loss to know who had been
at the fowl pen. As, with us, men like to hunt the
Fox, and do not wish to take it in a trap, or have
it shot, Jane and the boy went back home, and set
to work to mend the wire, so as to keep it out of
The Fox is of a kind of dark red hue. He has
a sly face, and a pair of ears that cock up, and
make him look very pert. His tail is long and full
of hair, and his fur is warm and soft. His den is
a hole made in some bank, or by the root of a tree;
he will.stay in it all day, and as soon as it is dusk,
will come out to seek for prey. He will not take
a lamb, but he will kill a hare, so that he does a
good deal of harm; but men like so much to hunt
him with a pack of dogs, that they do not mind
this, but this is not kind to the poor Fox. Fox
cubs are very full of fun; they will get very tame
if kept in a yard, and will jump and skip, and play
all day long; but if not tied up, they will make
sad work with any kind of fowl that may be kept
I HAVE just come from the herb bed; I have been
hard at work at it all the day long, and I am sure
it will now be hard to find one wed in it, and it
was full of them when I went to it. I dug the bed
well over, and left no weed in it, and I then made
it neat with my rake. When I was busy at work,
I had the bad luck to cut a poor worm in two. I
did not mean to do this, but I did not see the
worm till I had cut it. It was a very long worm,
and I cut the end of its tail off. We must take
care how we dig; but you will be very glad to
know that a new tail will grow on it, to make up
for the one it has lost. This is very odd; for we
do not get new legs nor arms if we lose our own.
8 THE WORM.
The Worm does not walk; it has no legs: but it
can fold up its body and let it out, and then fold
it up once more, in a way that does as well for it
as if it were to walk. The Worm eats tiny bits off
a leaf, or bits of the soil; it is of much use in a
clay soil, as it will make its hole in it, and so let
out some of the wet. The mole eats the Worm,
and so will more than one kind of bird. When it
is dark, the Worm will come out of its hole to feed,
and it will take back bits of dead leaf with it into
the hole, and will bury them in the soil; and all
this does the soil good. The worm has a hair or
two on each side of its body, and by this hair it
will hold to the soil so as to help it to move. It
does not seem to have any eyes, but as it is fond
of the dark, it must be able to see in some way,
I feel sure.
IF you like to come with me, I will take you for a
long walk. We will go down the lane to the end,
and then turn up the hill till we get to the wood at
the top. I want very much to show you a Jay, and
we are sure to see one near the old farm by the
wood. The Jay is a gay bird; it has a top knot or
tuft on its head that has a pert look: its body is of
the same kind of dark red hue that you see in a
very ripe nut; and on each wing it has some gay
blue bars that can be seen a long way off. When
Jays fly from tree to tree you can see the bars
10 THE JA Y.
At the time of the year when the corn is not
ripe, the Jay will eat any kind of grub or slug, and
then it is of use; but as soon as the peas are ripe,
it will eat peas, and peas only Five or six Jays
will sit on the row of peas, and eat away at them
till no more are left: they will now and then, it is
true, take a bean or two, if any are near, but they
do not like this as well as peas. When the peas
are all gone, the Jays get to the corn, rye, and oats,
and do. much harm on a farm. They will rob a
corn rick when it is very cold, for they stay with
us all the year.
The Jays have no song, but they have a loud
call or cry, and they make this cry as they fly from
tree to tree. They are very bold, as well as sly,
and it is not easy to take them in a net or trap.
I SEE an Ass in the lane with her foal. The foal
has very long legs and ears, and it has long hair all
over its body: it is full of fun, and you can see it
skip up and down on the turf till its legs get weak,
when it will lie down to rest for a time, but I dare
say it will soon jump up, as gay as ever. When its
legs are able to bear it with more ease, it will trot
up and down all day long, and kick and bite in
mere play. The Ass does not much care what it
eats, but it does not like to wet its feet, and will
12 THE ASS.
not step into any kind of mud if it can help it. It
can bear cold very well, but its own land is a hot
one, and it will not grow so fine here.
The Wild Ass runs so fast that no one can get
near it. Now and then, men go out to hunt it, but
it is very rare for them to take it, and then it is in
a trap: nor is it easy to tame the Wild Ass when
they have got it, for it will rear, and bite, and kick
any one who goes near it, so that the only use that
they make of it is to eat it, and I am told it is very
good for food, and like beef.
In the East the Ass is used to ride upon by rich
men, but it is not kept as we keep it; it is well fed
on corn, and not left to pick up any food it can get.
It was much used in the Holy Land, as I am sure
you must have been told.
The Ass has very sure feet, so that it is not apt
to fall down, and the mule, who is a kind of Ass,
will go up and down a very high path and not fall
or slip: but the mule is not nice to ride upon, when
the path goes by the side of a rock, for it will have
its own way, and that way is to go as near as it can
to the edge of the rock, so that any one on its back
must feel as if he were up in the air, for he will be
just over the side of the rock, and must fear a fall
very much, I am sure.
11 y -~ :-~ *
THE NEWT OR EFT.
DOWN by the wood we have a pond that has duck
weed all over its top. It is so far in the wood that
it is very dark, and it is only now and then that a
ray from the sun can find its way to it. It is a
dull pond, but I am told it has a good many fish in
it. I do not know much as to this fish for my own
part, as I have not been able to get many to come
into my net; but I have many a time had a Newt
in it, when I did not want one. The Newt is not
a fish, but its way of life is a good deal like that of
14 THE NEWT OR EFT.
a fish: it can swim, and for the most part of the
year will live in the pond, and not once try to come
out of it. It has four legs, and can walk very
well, and it will walk up and down in the mud of
the pond, and now and then swim up to the top
for air. It will eat very tiny fish, or the eggs of
the toad or frog: it has a very long tail, and its
toes have a web like the toes of a duck; its back
and head, and part of its tail, are very dark; the
rest of its body is of a deep red or gold hue, with
riow and then a dark spot on the gold. The
Newt, or Eft, as some call it, is kept, now and
then, in a jar, with gold fish: when this is the
case, it must be fed with meat, and it will swim up
and down in the jar, or walk over any bits of rock
that may be in it. I can not say I like them very
much, but they do no harm to any one; and if you
wish to keep one in a jar to see what it is like, and
what sort of ways it has, you may do so, but when
you have had it for a time, it will be best to put it
back into the pond, as it will then find its own
food, and it will like that best, I am sure.
JACK GREY has five Dogs in his yard. I saw them
all to-day. One is a very big Dog, and one is of
that kind that is kept to hunt the fox: but Jack
had one Dog that I am sure you have not seen. It
is a Turn spit Dog. At one time, many years ago,
when men did not know as much as they do now,
they used to cook the meat at a very big fire, on a
spit; this spit was a long bar of wood, and it was
made so that a Dog had to turn it. The plan it
was made on was the same as that of the kind of
cage that mice were put into, that will turn and
turn as the mice run up the.wire. You may have
seen this sort of cage, for boys will now and then
show one at the door with mice in it: if so, you
will see how the Turn spit Dog did his work.
16 THE DOG.
Jack has one Dog that we call the Bull Dog; he
is ugly, but he is very bold, and he will not let any
one rob the yard when he is in it. If you put down
your coat and tell him to take care of it, he will
not let any one go near it, and he will sit down
on it, and not once get off it, till he is told that he
The eyes of a Dog are not like the eyes of a
cat: he can not see in the dark, nor does he take his
prey in the same way; he does not lie in wait and
jump on it, as the cat and lion do, but will hunt it
down as the wolf does. A Wild Dog does not wag
its tail, nor does it bark, it will only yelp and howl.
Wild Dogs live in a pack; they are not like our
Dogs, but are more like the wolf in form and ways.
But they are not so bold as the wolf; they will kill
a good many deer, but will not come so near a
town as the wolf will.
j ;..,. "ILL _
THE Hawk is a bird of prey, and will kill any bird
that is less than he is. We have more than one
sort of Hawk, but they have all the same ways,
and much the same kind of form. One kind will
eat mice, but many of them will not. A long time
ago, when no one had ever seen a gun-and when
no gun even had ever been made-men used the
Hawk to hunt with. Many a fair lady, in that old
time, rode out to take the air, with her pet Hawk
on her hand, and a gay page, or boy, to hold her
rein, and lead her in the path. Men, at that time,
used to take the Hawk from the nest, when it was
not yet so old as to be able to fly. At that age it
18 THE HA WK.
has a soft down all over it, to keep it warm, like
the owl; and as soon as all this down is gone, the
bird can fly.- The man who had the care of the
Hawk then put him into a room made for him, that
they used to call "the mews." Here he was fed,
and, in time, made very tame, and then he was able
to go out to hunt. When the man took him out,
the Hawk wore a hood over his head and eyes, so
that he did not see any game, or prey, till it was
time for him to fly; and he was tied to the man's
fist. When a bird rose up, the man took off the
hood, and let the Hawk go free. As soon as the
Hawk saw his prey, he flew up in the air so high
as to be able to rush down on it, and kill it with a
blow from his beak. If the prey rose as high as
the Hawk, it was so far safe, for a Hawk will not
fly up at its prey, but will only dart down upon it.
As soon as the prey was dead, the Hawk flew back
to the man who took it out.
The eye of the Hawk is very keen, and its beak
is like a hook. The male bird is not so big as his
mate. The nest is made in a rock or high tree.
Do you know what Seal oil is ? It is an oil that is
used to burn in a lamp. Now that it is so easy to
get gas, we do not burn much oil, but at one time
it was used so much that men went out to hunt the
Seal for the sake of its oil. The oil was made from
the fat. The Seal is not a fish, but it has no feet,
and it has a kind of fin, and by the use of its fins
it can swim very well, but they are not just like the
fins of a fish. The Seal has a head a good deal hke
the head of a bull dog, or pug dog, and it has a pair
of soft, dark eyes. Its skin is very full of hair : this
hair is dark, and not at all long, but very warm
20 THE SEAL.
we use it in many ways, and now that we do not
care so much for the oil, the poor Seal gets shot for
the sake of its skin. It has its home on some rock
in the sea, and it will have many more of its
own kind on the same rock with it, so that they
may form a herd. When five or six of them get
on the same rock, they will all lie side by side, and
bask in the sun. They seem to like to be in the
sun very much, but they also like to dive into the
sea, and they do not mind ice and snow, but will
even lie on an ice berg, or rock of ice. They live
on fish, and dive a long way down to take it. They
are so very fat that they can not very well sink in
the sea-for it is not easy for fat to sink-and it is
this fat that is used for oil. The Seal can not walk,
for, as I told you, it has no feet; but it can move
very fast for all that, for it can use its fins much in
the same way that feet are used; but it is most at
home when it is in the sea, when it will dive, swim,
and flap up and down for an hour or two at a time.
The Seal can be made very tame.
#, ("1; \ ,- _
7 iim '..'-.- 7_
A LONG time ago, when I was not so old as you
are, a man used to come to the town that I was in
with a Bear to show. He led it by a rope, and it
used to get up on its hind legs, and walk up and
down when the man told it to do so. This Bear
had a very long coat of dark hair, like a mat, and
used to put its two fore paws on the top of a pole,
and sit up to beg for buns or bits of cake. It was
very tame, and did not wish to hurt any one, and
was very glad to get a bun.
The Bear has no tail, and its paws are not made
like the paws of a dog or cat; they bend up very
22 THE BEAR.
much as it puts its foot down to walk, br. that its
feet look very flat. I have seen more than one
kind of Bear kept for show: some can be made
very tame, like the one I told you of, and some are
not easy to tame. Some eat meat; some do not.
All of them have- long hair. One kind has its
home in the cold snow and on the ice: this kind
eats fish, and will also lie in wait for a long time at
a hole in the ice for a seal to come up for air, when
he will kill the seal and eat it. Men hunt this kind
of Bear for the sake of its skin, as the fur is long
and very warm; it is very fond of its cubs.
In a Bear hunt, if the dogs fly at the Bear, it
will take them up in its arms, and hug them so
hard as to kill them. It is not easy for a man to
get away from it, as it can get up a tree. One kind
of Bear does not like snow and ice, so when it gets
cold it will make a den in a hole in some tree, and
lie in it till the cold is gone: it will only wake now
and then, as long as it is cold; and it gets very
lean and thin, but it will soon be fat when once the
cold is over.
Some men eat the Bear, and use its fat for oil;
and we are told that the paws are very nice to eat.
HERE is an Owl in a cage. Poor bird! It is a
pity to keep him shut up in a cage all his life In
a farm yard he is of more use than a cat, but in a
cage, you see, he is of no sort of use, and I am
sure he does not like it. Let us set him free; we
will not do so now, for the Owl can not fly well by
day, but as soon as it gets dusk we will take him
to the barn and open his cage door, and I know he
will be only too glad to fly out. He is an odd bird
to look at, he has such big eyes; and if you will
look at him you will see him open and shut them
24 THE OWL.
in a very odd way. His beak, you see, has a kind
of hook at the end of it for him to hold his prey
with. He eats mice, and when he has got one,
he will take hold of it in his beak, or with his foot,
and fly with, it to his mate to feed her as she sits
on the nest. He can fly in a very soft way, so that
the mice can not hear him till he is very near them,
and he can thus kill a good many. His eyes are
like a cat's eyes-they can see in the dark. His
nest is made in a hole in a tree, or on the beam of
an old barn, or in the ivy of an old ruin. His cry
is a kind of hoot, or hiss.
The Owl, when he has just come out of the egg,
has a soft down all over his body, even to the end
of his toes, so that he is kept very warm, and has
a very odd look, like a ball of wool, or fur, with
eyes in it!
Now then, let us have the lamp in, for it will soon
be dark, and even now we can not see to read, or
work, or play. As it is very warm, we will not
shut the door; that may stay open to let in the
cool air. Ah it has let in a moth as well I did
not mean it to do that, but I do not see how the
lamp can burn the moth, even if it were to go near
it, so we will not put it out yet, for I want you to
look at it. If it will not flit up and down so fast,
you may be able to see what it is like; or we will
try and take it in a net, so as not to hurt it. Now
I have it! Give me the vase that is on my desk.
It has a wild rose in it; we will put that out for a
26 IHE MOTH.
time, and wipe it, and then turn it down over the
Moth, and you will be able to see it very well. Now
look at its wing. Does it not look soft and warm ?
You see it has a kind of down all over it. It has
six legs, and it can walk very fast with them. This
Moth was once an egg, not so big as the knob of a
pin: then it was a sort of grub ;-one kind of grub
can spin a web, but our Moth did not do this: next,
a hard case came all over the grub, so that it was
not able to move or eat, and it lay in this case for
a long time; at last the case had a rent in it, at
one end, and out of this hole came our Moth, the
same size that it is now. The Moth can fly best
when it is dusk, it does not fly by day. And now
that we have seen it we will put it out, and then
shut the door, so that it may not come back into
the room any more.
I SAW a Wolf a few days ago: you may be sure it
was not a wild one; I am glad to say we have no
wild ones near us. The one I saw was tied up.
The Wolf is dark grey, his hair is wiry, and his
eyes are very long, and turn back from the nose to
the ears, more than any eyes I ever saw, and his
ears cock up. He is a good deal like a dog in form,
and he eats the same sort of food, and laps like
him; but he does not wag his tail, or bark. The
cry of the Wolf is a long, loud howl; he does not
howl much in the day time, but when it gets dusk
he will howl for an hour or two at a time.
The Wolf can bear both heat and cold, but when
28 THE WOLF.
it is very cold, and the snow is deep, he will join
with many more of his own kind and form a pack,
and they will all get very bold, and fly at any one
whom they may meet. Many ways are used to get
rid of them; I will tell you one. Nine or ten men
go out into a wood, and cut down some firs; with
the fir logs they make a kind of hut, very high, so
that a Wolf can not jump up to the roof: they then
put some live pigs in the hut, and give them food;
they then get on to the roof with as many guns as
they can get, and wait. The pigs soon cry out
over the food, and then, by and bye, a Wolf will be
seen to lurk near, and then one or two more, till at
last all the pack will come out of the wood, and
rush up and down on the snow, and try to get at
the pigs, and howl as loud as they can. Now is
the time for the men on the roof to fire, and this
they all do at once. As soon as a Wolf is shot, all
the rest rush on him and eat him up; and even if
he is only hurt, and not dead, they will kill him
and eat him. The men keep up a fire from the
guns as long as any of the pack are to be seen, but
when a good many are dead the rest get shy, and
go back to the wood, and run away.
THE GLOW WORM.
DOES it not seem a very odd time to ask you to
take a walk with me ?-for the sun has been gone
down more than an hour ago: and the moon will
not rise yet. It is true, you will see a star or two
out in the sky, but they are not what I want you
to look at just now-the star I wish to show you
will be on the bank at the end of the lane, for I
hope to be able to find a Glow Worm. A Glow
Worm is not a real worm: it is a kind of grub with
a sort of pale fire, or glow, at the end of its tail;
but this fire is not at all like the fire we use to cook
with; it will not burn, nor will it give out heat;
30 THE GLOW WORM.
you may take the Glow Worm up in your hand,
and it will not hurt you at all; it will walk up and
down all over your hand, and will cast a glow on
it from its tail so that you will be able to see it
very well, and yet it will not burn you. The Glow
Worm has this pale fire that its mate may be able
to find it in the dark. The male Glow Worm can
fly, and it will fly up and down over the bank in
the dusk, when it will look like a very pale fire fly.
The Glow Worm is fond of a damp spot to live in,
and you will find more of them when the dews fall
than when it is dry, but it will not come out when
it is very cold. The Glow Worm, and the Glow
Worm Fly, both lie at rest all the day, and do not
wake up till it is dusk, when they will be out at the
same time that the bat and the owl are.
RUN down the lane as fast as you can, and you will
be in time to see the Cows. The gate is wide open,
and they will all walk into the yard. One of them
has a calf, of whom she is very fond; you will find
that she will go up to the cow shed to see it, for
she can hear it low. You know that Cows give
milk, but you may not know that you will not be
able to find any part of a Cow that is not of some
use, when it is dead. You have a cup made of the
Cow's horn, and a shoe horn as well; and you have
a box made of its bone; and part of your shoe is
made of its skin: and you will dine on beef to day,
and will have a suet roll to eat with it.
32 THE COW.
Wild Cows do not live near us now; but at
one time this was not the case, and men used to go
out to hunt them; and a few of this sort are yet
to be seen kept in a park. Last year, when I went
to see your Aunt, she took me a ride to see some
wild Cows that were kept in a park not very far
from her home. I did not see thc-n very well, for
they were a long way off, near a dark wood, and
we did not wish to go very near them. The man
at the gate told us that when he goes into the park,
the herd will come up to him, but they will not
come very near: then one bull will come out from
the herd to look at him, and paw the turf with his
foot, and toss his head, and lash his tail, and he
will then dash off, but by and bye he will come
back, and stop, not so far from the man this time;
and so he will go on till the man gets up a tree, or
runs away, as it will not be wise of him to wait for
him, as he will gore and toss him if he does.
When a calf is born, the Cow will hide it in the
fern, till it can run; but if any one goes up to it, it
will butt with its head and paw the turf, just like
an old bull.
THE SEA GULL AND STAR FISH.
IF you look at that Sea Gull, you will see it fly up
and down just over the wet sand, now that the tide
is out. Do you wish to know why it goes up and
down in that way for so long a time ? It is on the
look out for food ; for, as the tide goes out, the last
wave will now and then cast up a Star Fish, or
some such food, with the sea weed, and this the
Gull will pick up, and find very nice. You know
the Star Fish has five arms-one kind has ten. It
is not good for us to eat, but the Gull will like it
The nest of the Sea Gull is made on a rock, or
a cave, near the sea. The Gull lays its eggs so
34 THE SEA GULL AND STAR FISH.
near the edge of the rock that, now and then, an
egg will roll off and fall down. When men who
live near the sea go out to fish in a boat, the Gull
will fly by the side of the boat for a long time, to
pick up any fish that it can get; and it will even
take a fish out of the nets, if it can get it, and if
the fish is not too big for it. Some men are so bold
that they will get a rope, and, when they have
made it fast to the top of the rock, will slip over
the side, and get down to the nest of the Gull, and
take the eggs to eat; but it is not at all safe for
them to do this.
Look at that sea weed at your feet! It is pink
and red. Pick it up, and give it to me; and we
will take it home, and hang it in the hall; and you
will see that on a fine day it will be dry, and on a
wet day it will be damp; so that, if you look at it,
you will be able to tell when it will rain.
--"* -- --
THE TOM TIT.
A PAIR of Blue Tits have made a nest in the elm
tree, near my bed room. They wake me up at the
dawn of day, so that I am not able to lie late.
You have no idea how busy they are! They are
up and down the tree all day long, on the look out
for food. As they eat any kind of grub, I can not
tell you how much good they do. The Blue Tit,
or Tom Tit, has a good deal of blue upon his head
and back, and a kind of buff hue on the side of the
face. One kind of Tit has a very long tail, and
one, that we call the Ox Eye, is dark. None are so
gay as the Blue Tit. The kind with the long tail
will make a very odd sort of nest; it is made to
hang to a twig like a bag, and the bird goes in and
36 THE TOM TIT.
out of a hole on one side. Boys call this nest a
" poke." It is full of soft wool, and in this wool the
Tit lays her eggs; she does not lay less than ten,
and now and then many more. The eye of the Tit
is so made that an ant or fly, or the egg of a grub,
when near it, will seem to the bird as if it were as
big as a hen's egg does to us. The Tit's eyes are
made in this way, that no kind of grub may be
able to get away from it, and I can not tell you
how many it will eat in a day. It will pick them
out of the buds on the rose tree or the pear, or any
kind of tree, as fast as it can move its head and
beak; and it will hang to a twig, with its head
down and its tail up in the air. The Tits all sing,
but not much. They stay with us all the year, and
get very tame when it is cold.
__ ^ -_
OH, look at the wool on the back of that Lamb I
It has a soft kind of curl all over its back. What a
nice Lamb! but it must not be on our lawn. How
did the Lamb come here ? It must have got in at
some hole in the old wall, or over the bank. Oh
no! I see the gate has been left open; but we
must not let him stay here. You see he has just
gone up to that pink, and he will bite the top off,
if we do not stop him. We must send him out
at once. Do not try to go up to him; he will go
away from you, and run all over the beds. Go
down that long walk, and turn to the left, and you
38 THE LAMB.
will then face him; and when he sees you, he will
run out at the same gate that he came in by.
The wool of the Lamb is very soft and fine.
Your cuff is made of this kind of wool, and baby
has a coat made of it, to wrap her up and keep her
warm when she goes out into the cold air. The
veil she has over her face when it is very cold is
also made of the wool of a Lamb. It does not
hurt the Lamb to cut its wool off; it is glad to get
rid of it when the days get very hot. This is not
the only kind of Lamb: one kind is more like a
goat, and has very long hair; but it does not live
Now look at our Lamb skip all down the lane!
See how fast he runs! He is glad to get back,
and if we shut the gate, I hope he will not come in
THE RING DOVE.
I HEAR the coo of a Ring Dove. The bird can
not be very far off, for the coo was very loud: it
must be in that elm tree, for I see a nest, and the
Dove is sure to be near it. Yes, I just saw it fly
into the tree; you can see the nest if you come
here and look up into the top of the tree. The
tree is not in its full leaf yet, so that the nest can
be seen very well. The Ring Dove lays eggs at
the end of May, when the elm is not in its full leaf,
but it will have more than one nest in the year.
40 THE RING DOVE.
You see the nest is made of bits of twig laid flat,
and some hay is put on the top of them: on this
hay the Dove lays two eggs at a time. The Ring
Dove is a bold bird when it has a nest; it will not
let any kind of hawk, but one, come near it at that
time, and that one does it no harm: but when it
has no nest, it is a very shy bird, and will fly away
as soon as it sees any one. It eats corn and peas,
and will peck up any kind of seed that it can find.
It does a good deal of harm on a farm, as it will
eat the corn that has been sown, and it does not
eat any kind of grub to make up for the loss. The
Ring Dove can fly a very long way at a time; it
has a soft kind of bill, and a red rim to its eyes,
and can see very far off It has a ring at the back
of its neck of a dark grey hue, and has two bars
of dark grey on each wing. It has its name from
the ring on its neck. It is very fond of its mate,
or wife, and will feed her as she sits on her nest.
This bird will stay with us in the cold part of the
THE FROG AND TOAD.
IT was very wet all day; the rain came down very
fast, and did not once stop till it was late in the
day: then the sun came out, and it was very warm.
The path was damp, but it was fine over head, and
even hot, so I went out for a walk. I had not been
far when I met a Frog; it was a very big one, and
took a leap from one side of the walk slap into a
pond that was near, and then swam away! It was
as much at home in the pond as on the path. The
Frog lays its eggs in a pond; when it has just come
out of the egg, it is all head and tail, it has no feet
then, and can not live on land. Its food is duck
42 THE FROG AND TOAD.
weed at this time. It has not any fins like a fish,
but it can swim very fast, for all that !-for it wags
its tail up and down, and from side to side, much
as if it were a fin, and gets on in this way. It has
a very odd look, a good deal like a dark pea, or a
bead, with a flat tail; but it is full of life, and wags
up and down in the pond so fast that it is not easy
for your eye to keep pace with it. In time its tail
will drop off, and four legs will grow on it; it will
then not wish to stay in the pond, or to feed on
duck weed any more, but will come out, and live,
for the most part, on land, and will then eat ants,
and such food, and be a real Frog. The eggs of
the Frog, and of the Toad also, are laid in a kind
of bag or sack. The Frog can hop a long way at
each leap, for its size, and it has an odd cry. The
Toad does not cry out so loud as the Frog, nor can
it hop so well. The Frog and Toad are a good
deal like when they are just out of the egg. The
Toad is very fond of a dark, damp hole to live in,
and it will live a very, very long time. As it eats
the slug and worm, it does much good.
THE Zebu is a kind of cow or ox. It is not just
like our cows and oxen, for its ears hang down on
each side of its face, and it has a hump on its back,
near its neck. It is a dark grey, or buff, and has
very mild eyes. The Zebu oxen do not live near
us; they live a long way off; they come from Asia;
you will find Asia on the map, if you like to look
for it. The Zebu is used in Asia to draw a cart;
it will not walk very fast, but it will do a good deal
of work in a day. Now and then a fine lady of
44 THE ZEBU.
rank goes out in a Zebu car; she sits in the car
with a veil over her face, and a maid by her side.
The rich man who owns the Zebu oxen will not let
his wife ride in a car that is not very gay; and to
make it so, he will dye the neck of the ox a deep
red, and put a tuft of red or blue wool on its brow,
and a dash of red dye on each horn, and it will
have a red or blue net all over its back. The yoke
also is made very gay: the yoke is a beam of wood
made to go over the neck of the ox, for it to draw
the car with; this beam is made fast-to the pole of
the car, so that two oxen can draw at once, and
rich men dye this yoke of a red or blue hue, or
even gild it with gold. The lady not only has her
maid with her when she goes out, but two men
walk, one on each side of the car, to wait upon her
and help-to take care of her.
Zebu oxen like to go into a pool, and they get
in so deep that the mud on the side of the pool is
all over them, so that no one can see any part of
them but the head. They will stay in this cool
mud all the hot part of the day, and not come out
till the sun has set.
You have not been down the turf walk for a long
time. When you do go, you must look at the rose
bush at the end, by the old ivy wall. On this rose
you will find a very odd ball, and I dare say you
will not know what this ball is, if you are not told.
It is of a pale hue, and is so firm on the tree that
you will not be able to pull it off if you try; nor
will it be wise of you to do so, for it is the nest of
a Wasp, and you must not go too near it. You
may sit down on the old turf seat, and look at it;
you will then be so far off as to be safe, and you
will then see a hole at the end of the ball. By and
bye a Wasp will come out of the hole, it may be,
or one will go in. This nest is made of bits of old
46 THE WASP.
wood that have been in the rain and sun till they
are soft: a very old post, or gate, or part of an old
tree, will any of them do very well. The Wasp
will bite off bits of the old wood to make the nest
of, and it has a kind of glue in its body, so that it
can make the bits of wood firm on the rose bush;
and the nest is so made that no rain or wet can get
into it, but runs off as it does from a roof. One
kind of Wasp does not make its nest in a tree, but
in some bank. The Wasp, like the bee, puts its
egg into a cell; but the cell is, for the most part,
made of old wood, like the nest, and not of wax,
like the cell of a bee. One kind will make a sort
of door to shut up the hole of its nest when it is
wet, and this nest has a good deal the look of a cup
with a lid to it. The grub of this kind is fed on a
fly, and the old Wasp will put a dead fly into the
nest for the grub to feed on, and shut the door
down to keep it safe. In time, the grub will eat
the fly, and then gnaw its way out: it will then be
THE COD FISH.
WHEN I went to the sea side, I was glad to find
that Sam Ward had come back once more. I dare
say his wife and baby were very glad to see him,
for he had been from home some time; when he
goes away it is to fish for Cod, and as he has to go
a long way off in his boat to find the Cod, he will
stay out for a week or two at a time. The Cod is
a fish that is of much use to us: it is not at all
bony, and is very nice to eat; we also use it as a
salt fish. It is cut open, and hung up in the air to
dry, and a good deal of salt is put to it to make it
keep: when this has been done it will not go bad,
but will keep for a year or two. An oil is made
from the Cod, also, that is of much use to any one
who is very weak. Jane Ray was so ill, poor girl!
48 THE COD FISH.
with a very bad cold, that she was not able to sit
up in bed, and she had to take some of this oil: it
did her good, and in a week or two she was able
to walk very well, and she can now go to work as
she used to do; but she told me this oil was not at
When Sam goes out in his boat, he has one or
two men with him to help him to take the fish; and
if they have good luck, they will soon fill the boat
with them. The men who fish for Cod do not take
a net, but have a line and hook; the fish will bite
at the bait very fast, so that a good many can be
got at one time: as soon as the boat is full, the
men go home at once, and sell as many as they
can ; the rest they salt.
All fish come from eggs, and the Cod has so
many at a time, that it is very easy to get; and
when it is salt, the poor can buy it, and not find it
,rc, F~YF ~ C6
THE ROOK AND CROW.
WHAT a nice fine day it is! The men at the farm
will be able to get the corn in very well on such a
nice day. You can see the man who sows it from
here, if you like. He has a bag with the corn in it
hung by his side, and he sows it as he goes up and
down the hill. Do you see that big, dark bird?
Wait a bit, and you will see it fly over the hill.
Now it has gone down on to the red soil near the
man. It is a Rook, and you will soon see some
more, for this bird is sure to have more of its own
kind near it. Look! five or six more just come
50 THE ROOK AND CROW.
over the hill. You may be sure of this at any
time: that if you see one Rook, more are not far
off. Now this is not the case with the Crow, who
will only live with its own mate, and will not let
any bird of its own kind come near its nest, nor
does it like a Rook to make a nest in a tree near
its own. The Rook is of much use on a farm, for
it eats a kind of grub that does harm to the crop :
it is true, it eats some corn now and then, but none
to hurt, and the good it does will more than pay
for that. The nest of the Rook is made in a high
tree. I have seen as many as six in one elm: it is
made of bits of twig, and the nest of the Crow is
made in much the same way. The Rook has a
very hard bill, and it will poke it deep into the
soil to seek for a grub or worm, and it will then
dig it out and eat it: no one can ever tell how
much good it does by this! The Crow is very
fond of eggs to eat, and will rob the nest of any
bird it can get at, and it does not do us good, like
the Rook. It is not easy to tell the Rook from
the Crow, as they are like in many ways.
Vi __ n --p;-j
WHEN next Aunt Kate and I go into town, we
mean to buy a blue hood of Lama wool for Anna
Lee's baby. The baby will look very nice in it,
and it will be soft and warm for it. We will have
the pony and gig some day soon, and take it to
Anna, and you will then see the baby in it, and I
am sure you will like that very much, and I dare
say you will be glad to hear what the Lama-
from whom we get the wool to make the hood
The Lama is much the same size as the deer,
but its body is not so slim, nor are its legs so thin.
52 THE LAMA.
Its home is a long way from us, so that we only see
it in a show; but in its own land it is of as much
use to the men who live near it, as the rein deer
is to the Lapp. It has a very long, soft kind of
wool on its back; this is spun in the same way as
the wool of the lamb. The Lama is not used to
draw a cart, but it will go a long way with a
load on its back; it will lie down to have the load
put on its back, and if it is- too big, it will not get
up, but when the pack is of a size that it can take,
it will then get up and walk off with it. When it
has gone on for a long time, it will want to rest; it
will then lie down once more, nor can any one
make it get up as long as it does not wish to do
so: it will have its own way, and if the men who
are with it try to make it move, or beat it, it will
spit at them, but it will not stir: at last, when it
has a mind to do so, but not till then, it will get up
and go on. It can bite very hard, but it does not
do this to any one who is kind to it, nor will it
spit in this case. Its feet are so made that it can
go up and down hill with ease. The wool of the
Lama is dyed when it is spun; as it is, for the
most part, grey.
THE Tame Swan is a very fine bird; we also call
him the Mute Swan, for he has no cry. The Wild
Swan is not so big as the Tame Swan, and he is
not mute; he has a very loud cry, but he does not
sing. He does not fly much by day, but as soon
as the sun has set, he will rise up from some lake
or mere, and fly for a long time, and he will like it
best when the moon is at the full. A mere is a
kind of lake, or very big pool, but it is not so deep
as a lake in any part of it. More than one Swan
will live on the same lake, and when many of them
fly all at once, one is sure to take the lead: this
54 THE SWAN.
bird is an old one, who will know his way well, and
can take care of the rest; and as they all fly from
one mere to the next, he will cry out from time to
time for the rest to hear, that none of them may
The Wild Swan eats a kind of weed that lies on
the top of the lake, and the Tame, or Mute, Swan
will eat corn or seed as well, and has to be fed.
The nest of both is made by the side of the pool,
in the reed beds, when they grow high, for the
Swan does not like his nest to be seen, and will fly
at any one who goes near it: and his bill is so hard
that a blow from it will hurt very much. A kind
of rush, also, will hang over the nest, and hide it,
for the stem of this rush is very tall, and the leaf
is very long, not at all like the kind you see by our
pond. The Swan lays two eggs. It has a soft
down next its skin; I dare say you have seen this
down; we use it in many ways, but the Swan uses
it to keep out the wet.
THE SILK WORM.
NEXT week I mean to go and see a boy whom I
know, who has a tray of Silk Worm eggs, and I will
take you with me that you may see them also.
Each egg will turn into a grub, and each grub will
spin a kind of web that will be silk. The boy who
has them will take the silk off the grub, and wind
it on a reel; but he will have to put the grub into
bran to keep it warm, as it will not live when the
silk is gone if it is left in the cold air; it will then
have a case all over it, so as to be hard, and in a
few days it will be a moth. To keep the Silk
Worm eggs safe, he will put them into a flat tray
made of card, and will keep them out of the way
56 THE SILK WORM.
of any bird. When a grub has come out of one of
the eggs, it will be put into a new tray, made deep
on the side, with a leaf or two from the tree it is
most fond of, to eat. When it has been left here
for some time, it will spin its web in the way I have
just told you. If the silk is left on the grub it will,
in time, bite its way out, and then it will not be a
grub, but a moth, and the silk will be of no use.
It will take many and many a web to make up a
yard of silk as we see it! Silk, when it is on the
grub, is a fine buff, not very dark, and is very soft.
We use silk in many ways, to sew with, as well as
to wear; and when you see the ball of silk on the
Silk Worm, you will find how much will have to
be done to it to make it fit for us to put on. We
do not get much silk from our own land, for the
Silk Worm will not live in any but a very warm
spot; so that if a very cold wind were to blow upon
it at any time, it must die.
WHEN I was in our rick yard, one day last week,
I saw a bird fly into a hole in the wall of the cart
shed. I went up to the spot to see what sort of a
bird it was, and why it went into that deep hole;
but it had got so far down that I only saw its beak
and eyes. It was a hen bird, for the cock sat on a
tree near, and just then gave me a song. It was
a Wren. I then went away and left her. Next
day, when I came, she was gone, and I saw her
nest with four pale eggs in it. The cock will sing
to her and feed her as long as she sits on her eggs.
The song of the Wren is loud for its size, and it
will sing, more or less, all the year. It does not go
58 THE WREN.
away from us as soon as it is cold, but the mark of
its tiny feet may be seen even on the snow; and it
will hop near our door, as if to -ask for food, when
the ice is so hard as to keep from it the food it is
most fond of; for it does not live on seed, but eats
ants, and the eggs of any kind of grub or fly, and
it will eat the grub as well, when it can find it.
This kind of bird has been seen to make its nest in
an old hat that hung on a nail on the wall; and
once a Wren made a nest in the lock of an old
One kind of Wren has a top knot of a gay gold
hue on its head. This kind is not even so big as
the bird we have just seen, and its nest is not more
than half the size of a hen's egg. This nest is
made in an oak tree, and the Wren will live in the
tree, and not want to go out of it; for it will find its
food in the bark, and run up and down it, and fly
from twig to twig all day long, as busy as a bee.
LAST week I went to a fair, and saw a Lion in a
show. He was in a cage, or den, and did not seem
very wild. He had a mane of very long hair all
down his neck, and his paws were like a cat's paws,
only they were so very big. He had a long tail,
with a tuft of hair at the end of it. He lay down
all the time I was in the show, and did not get up
to walk at all: I wish very much he had got up for
me to see him walk. His eyes, too, were shut, and
he did not once open them all the time I was near
6o THE LION.
him: his eyes are like a cat's eyes, and can see in
The Lion, when he is free, and not in a cage,
does not like to live in a land so cold as ours; his
own land is so waim that even the very wind is hot,
and the sun is like a fire. The Lion can not bear
cold, and will soon die if he is not kept warm. His
roar is very loud, so that you can hear it a long
way off; he can also pur like a cat, only the pur is
loud, and not soft like a cat's. He will also hide
in a bush, and jump out on his prey like a cat
does on a bird; so that you see the Lion and cat
are very like in many ways.
When the deer or oxen lie down to rest in a cool
spot, when the hot day is over, the Lion will lurk
near them till they are all still, and then dash out
upon them with a loud roar, and, with one blow
from his paw, will kill his prey.
When a Lion is kept in a cage, he is fed on raw
meat, and will eat a good deal in a day. When he
has a good meal, he lies down to rest, like the one
I saw at the show.
,. i -
I MUST say I have not had a very nice walk. All
went on well till I sat down on a bank to rest; but
I did not see that an Ant's nest was on this bank,
and I sat down so near it, that I was all over Ants.
I soon got up; but it was not easy to get rid of
them all, and I am not sure that I have not some
on me now. I do not like this, for an Ant' can
hurt a good deal, but not so much as a wasp. The
Ant is as busy as the bee, and, some time, you will
like to see its nest, and to look at it at work. The
nest is made in some dry part of a bank, or on the
62 THE ANT.
side of a heap of soil: the Ants fill the nest with
food, laid by for the time when it gets too cold for
them to be out of the nest: they will lay up corn,
or any kind of seed-or rice, if you will give them
a bit. At one time of the year Ants can fly: this
is when the nest gets so full of them that some
have to go away; they then fly off to a new spot
on the bank, or to some clod of soil a good way off,
and they then form a new nest: as soon as they
have done this, they can not fly any more, but they
can run very fast. They are very busy, for they
have to make a cell for each egg, and to lay up
food to eat when it is too cold to go out of the
Some Ants-not like ours-that live a long way
off, in a hot land, make so big a nest that it is as
tall as a man, and has a good deal the look of a
hay cock, only it is not made of hay; and one kind
will eat into a dead tree, if it can find one that lies
down, so that no part is left but the bark, and will
also run all over the wall of a room, and eat up
any kind of odds and ends, and will do a good deal
; of harm in this way.
THE CARP, PIKE, AND EEL.
NED has been down to the pool to fish: he took
his rod and line with him, and a can to put his fish
in. When he came back, he had in the can some
Carp, and a Pike: some men call the Pike a Jack.
The Carp is not like the Pike, but both are good
to eat. The Carp is a fish with a high back that
goes up in an arch; the Pike is long and thin, and
has a long nose. The Carp is a lazy fish, and gets
very fat: it is fond of the mud, and can be made
so tame as to come to be fed at the side of a pond:
I have been told that some Carp will even come
64 THE CARP, PIKE, AND EEL.
when they hear a bell rung to call them up to have
some food. The Pike is a fish that will eat any
kind of food that it can get at (I do not mean that
it will eat a weed), and if it is put into a pond with
a good many more fish that are less than it is, it
will soon eat them all up, and it will not care if
they are of its own kind or not. It is not tame,
but it is very bold, and will dash at the bait, and
not seem to mind a hook. Both the Carp and the
Pike will grow to be a good size: they will not live
in the sea.
Last week Ned went down to the pool just as it
grew dusk, and put a line into it at the very edge,
and made it fast to the side: he did this in more
than one part of the pool, and when he had put in
five or six, he left them. Next day he went down
to the pool to see them, and pull them up. One
line had an Eel on it. The Eel is long and thin
like a worm, but it has fins, and can swim,-or
wave its body up and down in the pool. Eels like
mud, and lie in it a good deal. They are good to
eat, and one kind will grow to be a yard or two
WHEN I was by the ash wood a day or two ago,
I sat to rest on the top rail of the gate. As I did
not move at all for a longtime, a Hare, who was in
the wood, did not know I was near, and so came
out to feed just at my feet. It was a good big
Hare, and had a fine pair of long ears; I was very
glad it did not see me, for the Hare is very shy,
and will run away if any one goes near it. Its
eyes are full and dark, and it can see any body a
very long way off; it does not shut them even
when it is at rest. It runs very fast, with a kind of
66 THE HARE.
skip or hop, and can jump very well: its fore legs
are not so long as its hind ones, so that it can run
up a hill with more ease than down one. It is very
full of play when it is dusk, and will jump up and
down, and leap over any turf heap, or low bush, as
gay as can be. The Hare eats most of its food
when it is dusk: in the day time it lies flat down
with its eyes wide open, and its ears back; it lies
for the most part in a tuft of fern, or by a bush,
and its nest is made in some bush or fern tuft; we
call the spot that it lies in, its "form." The Hare
I saw when I was on the gate sat up on its hind
legs to wash its face with its fore paws; when it
had done this, it ate some of the oats that grew
near, and ran up and down on the turf, and gave a
kick with its hind feet, as if in fun: just as it did
this, it saw me; this made it stop and look up at
me, and then it ran back into the wood, and I saw
no more of it, but I dare say it came back as soon
as I was gone.
M I I
I WENT, a few days ago, to see an old Lady whom
I know, who has a Lory in a cage in her room.
The Lory is a bird : it is not only red and blue, but
has many gay hues as well: it does not sing, but it
can talk: it will say a word or two so well that we
can make it out, but a good deal of its talk is not
so easy to find out. It will not say any word that
it does not hear over and over many a time, for it to
get it well into its mind. It will hold its head on
one side and look very hard at any one who says
the word to it, and then it will try if it can say it
too: in time it will be able to do so, and then it
T8 THE LOR Y.
will not want to hear it any more, but will try it
over in a low tone, when it does not know that any
one is by, as if to make sure that it will not lose it.
This bird is very tame, and gets fond of any one
who is kind to it. It has a hard bill, with a hook
to it, and it can hang by this hook and its feet, so as
to have its head down and its tail in the air in a
very odd way. The one I saw has a hoop or ring
hung up in the room it is kept in, and it will sit in
this ring for an hour or more, and not once wish to
fly away. It is very fond of a bath, and is fed
on sop and corn, but it can eat a hard nut also.
When I saw it, it had a plum to eat, and it held
this fast with one foot. The Lory does not live in
our land; you will not see one in the wood; its
own home is very hot, and when it is in it, it will
live with many more of its own kind. It lays two
eggs at a time.
WHEN I last went out at the gate into the lane, I
saw a Mole hill on the turf by the path. A Mole
hill is a heap of dirt made by the Mole, who has
his home in the soil an inch or two from the top.
I do not know if you have ever seen a Mole; if
not, you may wish to hear what it is like. It is the
same size as a rat; and it has a very odd, long
nose, like that of a pig, made to rout with. The
eyes of the Mole are not easy to see, nor are the
ears, as they are sunk in the fur. It digs in the
soil with its fore paws and its nose; it does this to
get at its food. The worm is the food it is most
70 THE MOLE.
fond of, but it will eat any kind of grub or slug
that it can find in its path. It will pass its life in
the soil, and will only come up to the top now and
then. It can not run very fast when it does come
up, as its feet grow out very much on each side of
its body: they are of more use to dig with, and get
rid of the soil, than to walk upon. The Mole is
most fond of a damp, wet part of the turf to work
in, and does not like dry sand: its skin is very soft,
and has a warm fur all over it. I do not know that
the Mole does much harm, but as it will bore a
hole in the best turf, so as to make it look far from
tidy, men take it in a trap, or kill it with a dog. It
is not easy to tame it, for it does not like any one
to look at it, and will hide in the soil as soon as a
foot goes near it: its ears are very keen, so that it
can hear a step a long way off, and when you want
to see it at work, you will have to wait a long time,
and not once move, or it will not come up to the
top of its run, as we call its hole. Its nest is in the
turf; it digs out a hole to make it in, and is most
fond of a clay soil for it, as the top is not then so
apt to fall in.
I HAVE just been to the pier to have a long chat
with old Ross. The pier, you know, is that long bit
of land that runs out into the sea. Old Ross and
his wife live in a hut by the sea side; this hut is
on a rock very near the sea, and he goes out in his
boat to get fish for sale. I went to day to see him
mend his boat; a bit of wood had come out, so
that the boat was not safe, and when he had put a
new bit in and made it fast, he put some tar on it,
that he had made hot in an iron pot over a fire. I
have also seen him mend his nets; he dips his nets
in the tar as well as puts it over his boat, and a
72 THE CRAB.
good deal of the tar gets on old Ross as well as on
the boat and the nets. As the tar is used to keep
out the wet, he puts some of it into each seam in
his boot also, so that he does not get his feet wet
when he puts them into the sand or sea. By his
hut he has a deep tub, sunk into the sand, to keep
some of his fish in when he is not able to sell them;
some will live a long time in this tub. He took
a Crab out of it to show me when I was with him
last. The Crab has a hard case over its back, and
has long, hard arms, with a claw at the end of each.
The Crab goes in a very odd way: it runs side
ways. If the Crab has the ill luck to lose a claw,
a new one will grow in time, so that it can run as
well as ever. It is very fond of the sand, and will
make a hole in it to live in. Ross sets a trap for
it in the sea; this trap has much the look of a bird
cage made of wood : some meat or fish is putififo
it for a bait, and when the crab has got in to eat it,
he will not be able to get out. A crab is not red
till you cook it, you know, but is very dark.
HAVE you ever seen a Lynx ? or do you know
what it is like ? If not, I will try if I can tell you.
The Lynx is not so big as a wolf; it is more like
a fox in size, and it has very long ears with a tuft
of hair at the end of each ear that has a very odd
look. It has a very keen pair of eyes that can see
a very long way off. The Lynx lies in wait for his
prey in some bush or hole that will hide him, so
that he may not be seen, and then when any bird
goes near him, he will jump out on it and kill it,
much in the same way that a cat does. It will eat
74 THE LYNX.
a good big bird, or even a lamb if one has the ill
luck to get in its way, and it will lurk in the dark
for a very long time. As it will kill more than it
can eat at once, it does a good deal of harm, and
men try to take it in a trap. This trap is not like
a rat trap, but is made with a beam of wood to
fall on the Lynx when he puts his feet on it to
pull out the bait. The bait is a bit of raw meat, or
a dead bird, or dead lamb.
The fur of the Lynx is of use, as it is nice and
soft. The Lynx can be made tame, but it is not a
very easy task to tame it, for it is very apt to snap
at and bite anybody who goes near it. Even when
it is kept in a yard, or tied up like a dog, it does not
make a nice pet, and it is not safe to play with it.
DEAR me! I see no less than ten Pigs in the road !
I must own I am not very fond of Pigs, but they
are much used for food. Pork is not the very
best kind of meat, for at that time of the year
when it is very hot, as in June or July, it is apt to
make any one ill who eats much of it; a Jew or a
Turk will not eat it at any time. The Pigs in the
road look as if they were on the way to some fair
to be sold; you see a boy is with them who has a
long pole in his hand, to poke them on with when
they stop to rout in the mud, and they are so lazy
that they need this.
76 THE PIG.
Pigs, with us, are not wild, but in Asia men hunt
the Wild Boar. The Wild Boar has a long tusk in
each jaw, and he will make a rush at the men when
they get near him, and try to tear and rip them
with his tusk. When he is in a rage he will foam
at his jaws, and dash up and down as fast as he
can run, and the hair on his neck will rise up like
a mane. Men like very much to go out to hunt the
Wild Boar, but they may get hurt if they do not
take care. You see he is not at all like our dull
Pigs who will not get out of the way even if we
give them a hard push, and who eat and cram as
long as they can get food, and even till they are so
fat that they can not walk.
A herd of Wild Hogs will do much harm if they
get into a rice bed; rice will only grow in mud,
and Pigs are very fond of mud, and like to rout in
it, and to lie and roll in it, and they will pull up
the rice by the root, and eat it, so that men have to
be set to look out for them, and keep them off the
I WENT down to the wood an hour or two ago, just
at noon, and sat for a long time on the bank by the
old ash tree. The root of the ash juts out of the
bank, and the turf is very soft and firm, so that it
is a very nice seat: a wild rose and some ivy hang
over it, and from it you see a very fine view. I had
not sat down for more than half an hour when I
saw a Wild Bee fly into a hole in the bank at my
side: by and bye he came out, and flew away, but
he very soon came back once more; and he flew to
and fro. in this way all the time I was on the seat.
This Wild Bee had a nest in the bank, and was
78 THE BEE.
busy at work to fill it with food, for Bees have a
kind of bag that will hold the food.
We have more than one kind of Bee with us:
one is the Hive Bee, and we have many Wild Bees.
One kind has its nest in old wood, such as a post
or gate, or a hole in a tree; and one kind, like the
one I saw when I was on the seat, has its nest in a
bank. The Hive Bees are not so big as the wild
ones, nor are the wild ones all of the same size.
You have seen a very big Bee come into a room,
and buzz all over it, up and down, and then fly out
with a hum: this is one kind of Wild Bee.
In the hive, one Bee only lays all the eggs, and
some of the rest feed her, and one egg is put in
each cell. Out of this egg a grub will come, and
when it has been fed a long time, this grub will
turn into a Bee. You know very well what nice
food Hive Bees have, and how hard they work to
get it; but you may not know that Wild Bees are
just as busy, for they also have food to get
OUR poor old Cat is dead She was very old, and
for some time past has not been well. We made
her a bed of hay by the fire, and she lay on it all
day, and was fed with soft meat and milk, for we
were very fond of her: but, at last, she died of old
age. I am to have a new Cat now that she is gone:
I have seen her; she is at a farm a long way from
here, more than a mile. She will come here in a
few days, and I hope she will not find her way
back, for I hear that Cats are very apt to go back
to any home that they know well. I shall be very
glad to see Miss Puss, as she will kill the mice and.
80 THE CAT.
rats; but I hope she will not take any bird, for I am
so fond of a bird. She is very neat, and will keep
her fur very tidy, and will lick her paws, and then
rub them over her face to wash it; and she will not
put her feet into any wet spot if she can help it,
and when it is not fine she will not go out, but will
stay and purr by the fire all day.
The Wild Cat is grey, and has a long tail, very
full of fur: the sole of its foot is very dark, and it
has wild, keen eyes. It can see best when it is
dark, and when it gets into a wood, it will kill so
much game that it will do more harm, even, than a
fox. The men who take care of the game try to
take it in some kind of trap, but it is so wild that,
even then, they do not much like to go near it, for it
will fly at the eyes in a rage, and tear them, if it
can, so that they are very glad to find a sort of
trap that will kill it at once.
I Ir 4
THE WILD DUCK.
NOT long ago I went to stay some time in a farm
near the Fens. The Fens are a low, flat kind of
land that lies near the sea: they are very damp and
wet, and have much mud in them: the rush and
reed grow all over them, and you do not see any
tree like the oak or elm, as they will not live in
such- damp mud: the soil is, for the most part, a
kind of peat, or bog, and is not dry, even in the
hot part of the year, and when it is cold the Fens
are all over ice. They are full of wild fowl, such as
the teal, and wild duck, the moor hen, and coot. At
one time of the year each reed bank is sure to have
a nest in it. When I was at the farm I told you of,
one of the men used to go out with a gun to kill
the wild fowl, and in this way I saw many a Wild
82 THE WILD DUCK
Duck. The men have an odd kind of trap to take
the wild fowl with. I will tell you how this is done.
The men on the farm get a Duck made of wood, so
like a real one that it is not easy to see that it is
not one. This Duck is made to swim on the lake,
and it is kept near the side by a line. The men
hide in the reed beds, and lie in wait till the wild
fowl see the Duck that is made of wood: as they
do not know that it is not a real one, they feel safe
as long as they see it on the lake, so they fly down
to join it, and when they come near they are shot
by the men who are in wait for them. The Wild
Duck is not so big as the tame one, but it can fly
very well, and dive and swim. Wild fowl of this
kind fly in a long line, and, for the most part, just
as it gets dusk.
S' -, '
,' i ,) .l I ,.
RATS AND MICE.
As Jem and I went into the yard we saw such a
big Rat run into the barn : it is a pity that the
barn has Rats in it, for they do so much harm to
the corn, and we must hope they will not get into
the fowl pen, or dove cote, for they will eat the
eggs. Rats are very bold; they will fly at some
cats, and it is a good one that will kill them and
not mind them when they bite her. The bite of a
Rat is not very easy to cure, and many cats will
not face a Rat for fear of it. When once Rats
have got into a barn or shed, it is very hard to get
rid of them: they will make long runs in the soil
from one shed to the next, so that they can get all
84 RATS AND MICE.
over the farm and yet not be seen. Rats like the
dark best, and are very busy as soon as it gets
dusk. They eat any kind of food they can find;
corn, or eggs, or meat, or ham: they do much harm
in a mill, for they will soon gnaw a hole in a meal
sack and get at the corn, and in a ship the men are
even less glad to see them, for they will make a
mess of much that they do not eat. I am sure we
must send for a man with some dogs who know
how to hunt them, and see if we can get rid of
them; but this will not be easy, for they are very
sly, and will not run into a trap two at a time, as
Mice have been seen to do.
Mice are not so big as Rats, and are not so bold,
nor do they do so much harm: they will bite if
any one lays hold of them; but this they do out
of fear, and I am very sure they will not fly at any
one. Mice can be made so tame as to draw a tiny
cart, or to turn a toy mill, and even to sit up with
a flag, held up by the fore paws.
'tR \: 4a d
I HAVE just had some bad luck: I will tell you
how it was. I had just sown a row of peas on one
of my beds, and they all grew. The row was a
nice long one, and had no gap in it from end to
end: each pea that I had set had come up, and not
one was lost. I had put a few bits of gay rag on
a line over them to keep away the tits and jays,
who are very fond of peas. All went on well, and
they grew nice and tall, when I went to look at
them, and saw that all the tops were gone and one
or two had not a leaf left : only a bare stem met
my view! I soon saw what had done all the harm;
86 THE SLUG.
it was not the jays nor tits, but was the work of a
Slug, or I may say, it was done by nine or ten,
We had had a fall of rain, and rain is what they
like, so they had come out and had made a fine
meal on my poor peas! I set to work at once to
pick them off, and I then threw them into the lake.
I shall put some soot all over the soil near my
peas, for the Slug does not like soot: the dust gets
on its damp back and will not come off, and it does
not like this at all, but if the soot gets wet, it does
not care for it so much. Salt, also, will keep the
Slug away, but then it may kill the peas, so I shall
not gain much by that.
The Slug has a soft body, and no bone: its eye
is at the end of its horn, and it can put its horn in
or out, just as may suit it best. It lays its eggs on
some leaf, or in the soil. It does so much harm
that I must try to get rid of it; a sea gull will
soon free my peas from it, if I can get a tame one;
but it is not very easy to do that, even when you
live by the sea.
THE BLUE FOX.
JOE NEAL, a man whom I know, told me he had
once been to a very cold land, a long way off. He
went in a ship, and was out on the sea for many a
long day. The land he went to is very far from
here, and it is so cold that the sun can not thaw
the ice and snow, so that they stay all the year.
Joe Neal saw a bear and a Blue Fox in the snow.
This Fox is not a real blue, but a kind of grey, only
it has the name of the Blue Fox for all that. It
has a very soft warm fur, with long hair; this fur is
very nice for a muff, or a boa, to keep us warm,
88 THE BLUE FOX.
and men go out to take the Fox in a trap for the
sake of its skin. Joe Neal told me that the men
find the Fox very sly; when the day's hunt is over,
and they sit down by the fire to rest, the Fox will
come very near, and even peep into the pot to see
what is to be got to eat. He will come up with so
soft a step that no one can hear him, and will poke
his nose into the pot, and try to take out the meat.
If the men stir, or turn to look at him, off he runs,
as fast as he can; and then, when all are at rest, he
will come back, and try once more to get the meat
out of the pot. You will want to know what the
Blue Fox can get to eat in so cold a land, but he
will find more than one kind of bird, such as the
wild duck, and the swan; and he will eat fish as
well, for at the time of the year when it is most
cold, and no bird will stay, the Fox also goes, and
gets near the sea, so as to pick up any fish that
may be left by the surf.
LOOK at the rain Does it not fall fast! Look
how it runs all down the roof of the barn, and
from that on to the next roof till it goes into
the rain cask, or butt, in the yard; by and bye
Ann will go for some of that very rain to put
in the jug that is in your bed room for you to wash
in, and I shall be very glad if I am able to show
you, in the jug, what a Gnat is like when it has
just come out of its egg. You know what a Gnat
is; you had a bite from one a day or two ago just
as it grew dusk, and your arm was very red for
some time. You have seen the Gnat fly up and
9o THE GNAT.
down when the sun has set, but I dare say you do
not know that when it has just come out of its egg
it is more like a tiny fish than a Gnat. The Gnat
lays its eggs in damp wood, such as the rain butt
in the yard, or in any post or log of wood that is
in a pool or pond. When it has just come out of
its egg it will not be able to fly, or live in the air,
but will lead the same kind of life that a fish does.
It has a tiny head and a long tail (or body, as you
may call it) with a fork at the end of it, and it
wags this tail so fast that it is not easy to see it.
For some time it will swim in this way, but at last
it will get out of the rain butt, or pond, and cast off
its skin, and come out of it a Gnat, who will be
able to fly in the air, and who will not be able to
live at all in the pond any more. Fish are very
fond of the Gnat for food: you may see them rise
from a pool' to take it, when it is just over them.
It is also fine food for more than one kind of bird,
and for the bat, as well.