Citation
The Swiss family Robinson, or, Adventures of a shipwrecked famiily on a desolate island

Material Information

Title:
The Swiss family Robinson, or, Adventures of a shipwrecked famiily on a desolate island
Uniform Title:
Schweizerische Robinson
Portion of title:
Adventures of a shipwrecked famiily on a desolate island
Creator:
Wyss, Johann David, 1743-1818
T. Nelson & Sons ( Publisher )
Place of Publication:
London
Edinburgh
New York
Publisher:
T. Nelson & Sons
Publication Date:
Copyright Date:
1872
Language:
English
Physical Description:
324, [8] p., [6] leaves of plates : col. ill. ; 18 cm.

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords:
Castaways -- Juvenile fiction ( lcsh )
Shipwrecks -- Juvenile fiction ( lcsh )
Family -- Juvenile fiction ( lcsh )
Survival after airplane accidents, shipwrecks, etc -- Juvenile fiction ( lcsh )
Adventure and adventurers -- Juvenile fiction ( lcsh )
Natural history -- Juvenile fiction ( lcsh )
Christian life -- Juvenile fiction ( lcsh )
Juvenile fiction -- Oceania ( lcsh )
Robinsonades -- 1874 ( rbgenr )
Family stories -- 1874 ( local )
Publishers' catalogues -- 1874 ( rbgenr )
Bldn -- 1874
Genre:
Robinsonades ( rbgenr )
Family stories ( local )
Publishers' catalogues ( rbgenr )
novel ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage:
England -- London
Scotland -- Edinburgh
United States -- New York -- New York
Target Audience:
juvenile ( marctarget )

Notes

General Note:
Added title page and plates printed in colors.
General Note:
Publisher's catalogue follows text.
General Note:
Translation of: Die schweizerische Robinson.

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida
Holding Location:
University of Florida
Rights Management:
This item is presumed to be in the public domain. The University of Florida George A. Smathers Libraries respect the intellectual property rights of others and do not claim any copyright interest in this item. Users of this work have responsibility for determining copyright status prior to reusing, publishing or reproducing this item for purposes other than what is allowed by fair use or other copyright exemptions. Any reuse of this item in excess of fair use or other copyright exemptions may require permission of the copyright holder. The Smathers Libraries would like to learn more about this item and invite individuals or organizations to contact The Department of Special and Area Studies Collections (special@uflib.ufl.edu) with any additional information they can provide.
Resource Identifier:
ALJ0680 ( NOTIS )
60585657 ( OCLC )
027029692 ( AlephBibNum )

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Full Text




The Baldwin Library

B —!
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BRINGING HOME THE MONKEY.











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1

SWISS FAMILY

ABVENTURES OF A SHIPWRECKED FAMILY ON A

DFSOLATE ISLAND

“So they,




enteousness

The glows
giories of the broad belt of the w
All these tey saw.”



TENNYSON, Futacit A vaieee

LONDON:

AND SONS, PATERNOSTER ROW;

EDINBURGH; AND NEW YORK.

ROBINSON;







Tne following Work has already obtained a celebrity,
not in England only, but throughout France and
Germany, which renders it altogether needless to
say anything here in regard to its high merits, or
its peculiar adaptation to interest and instruct the
youthful mind.

A Swiss Pastor, having set out with his wife and
young family, with the intention of settling as colo-
nists in one of the newly-discovered regions of the
Southern Ocean, has expended his small patrimony
in the purchase of cattle, agricultural implements, and
a variety of farming stock well suited for his proposed
destination, After a prosperous voyage has conducted
the ship into southern latitudes, the narrative opens
on the breaking out of a violent storm, which drives
the ill-fated vessel out of its course, and at length
dashes it upon the rocks of an unknown coast, leaving
it a total wreck. The family are. providentially
rescued from their perilous, and apparently hopeless
situation on the abandoned wreck, and effect a land-



vi PREFACE,

ing on the strange shore, where, for eleven years,
they industriously and successfully struggle with the
trials and privations of the castaway, without ever
seeing the long-hoped-for sail on the distant horizon.

The following pages consist of the Journal sup-
posed to be kept by the good Pastor during this
long period. The picture which it exhibits of piety,
resignation, and virtuous contentment, is well cal-
culated to furnish many excellent lessons for the
improvement of the young reader; while the ever
varying incidents and changing events excite the
liveliest interest, and the illustrations of character
and descriptions of natural history combine amuse-
ment with instruction in the most engaging style.
Taken as a whole, the narrative of the Adventures
of the Swiss Family Robinson will be found abun-
dantly to merit the high estimation with which it
has been already received on the Continent, and will
justly claim one of the very foremost places in the
library of the youthful British student.







Ohapter

TS
W.
Hi.
Iv.

Wo
VI.

Vii.
VHI
IX.
Xx.

XI.
XII.
XI
XIV.
XV.
XVI.

XVII.
XVI.
XIX.
XX,
XXi.
XXII.
XXIII.
XXIV.
XXAY.

The Shipwreck, ese ove
The Landing, ... eee ose
A Tour of Discovery, aoe

Return from the Tour of Discovery—Nocturnal Alarm,

Return to the Wreck,

Floating the Herd, ae eo
The Second Journey of Discovery, ...
Bridge-Building,

Change of Residence,

Establishment under the Great Tree,

Encampment under the Great Tree,

The First Sabbath, ae ee
Topography, ... a one
The Sledge, ae oe nae
New Supplies from the Wreck, eee
Cassava Bread, ss oes
The Pinnace, ... see ass)
Gymnastic Exercises, oe aoe
Exploring Excursion, ae on
Useful and Ornamental Arts, ae)
New Discoveries, eet eee
Sago Manufactory, aes eee
The Staircase, ... a ee
The Wild Ass, eee eee

The Rainy Season, ase one

102
109
116
145
133
139
148
156
164
175
182
189
193



vill CONTENTS.

Chapter
XXVI. The Salt Cavern, aos see
XXVII. The Cave Dwelling, ... ooo
XXVIII. New Projects and Discoveries,
XXIX. The Farm Houses, ... see
XXX. Our Winter Dwelling, ove
XXXII. Dissection of the Whale, see

XXXII. The Boa-Constrictor,
XXXIII. Death of the Ass and the Boa,
XXXIV. Excursion to the Great Bay, ...
XXXV. Excursion into a New Courtry,

XXXVI. Expedition of the Boys, exe
XXXVII. The Ostrich Hunt, ore ase
XXXVIII. Ostrich Training, Bos we
XXXIX. Return of the Rainy Season, ...
XL. The Boys’ Adventures, oes

XLI. The Kajack, oes ave
XLII. The Storm, GD eae
XLII. Expedition to the Savannah, ...
XLIV. The Pigeon Courier, a

XLV. Construction of a Redoubt, one

XLVI. General Review of the Culony,
XLVII. The Castaway, cee <
XLVIII. The New Sister. oes ee

XLIX. Conclusion, oes eee



Page
205
214
217
223
229
235
243
249
256
263
274
282
289
296

338
346
854
360
a7a





THE

SWISS FAMILY ROBINSON.

——___—_o—_._

CHAPTER [.

THE SHIPWRECK.

Tue tempest having continued during six long and
terrible days, with no appearance of abatement, it
seemed on the seventh to rage with redoubled fury.
We were driven far to the south-east of our true
course, and no one could form any idea where we
were; while we were dejected and utterly worn out
by the labour of our protracted watch. The masts
were broken, the sails in tatters, and the ship, already
fall of water, threatened every moment to go down.
Commending my soul to God, and no longer dream-
ing of the possibility of escape, I thus addressed my
four sons: ‘‘ My children, God can save us still, if he
please, but if our last hour has come, we must resign
ourselves, without murmuring, to the Divine will.
Let us rejoice in the hope of another life, where we
shall never be separated.”’



10 THE SHIPWRECK.

My poor wife, having dried her tears, assumed an
aspect of composure, and cheered the children who
sought refuge near her. Yet it was with difficulty
that I could master my own feelings, while I sought
to excite them to submissive resignation. Then
uniting together, we prayed to Almighty God, and
the earnestness of my dear children showed me how
suitable and encouraging prayer is, even to those of
the most tender age.

Suddenly we heard above the noise of the waves,
the ery of “Land! land!” At the same instant the
ship received so violent a shock, that we were con-
vineed it had struck, and must immediately go to
pieces. The fearful noise and rending of the timbers
gave new force to our terrors; and the water at the
same time entered the ship with such force, that we
could no longer doubt all hope was over. As I
listened, the captain shouted, “‘ We are sinking, cast
the boats loose!’’? The ery went to my heart like a
dagger, but I still sought to reassure my children,
knowing how unavailing is despair. “ Be of good
cheer,” said I to them, ‘God will help those who
put their trust in him. I go to see if there remains
for us even now no hope of safety.”

I left them and mounted on the deck; where I was
immediately thrown down by a billow, which com-
pletely drenched me. Recovering myself, I gained
a position where I was beyond the reach of the waves.
I saw to my horror all the boats alongside; the whole
crew were already overboard, and the last of the



THE SHIPWRECK. Il

sailors, a8 he sprung after his companions, cut the
rope, and set them at large.

I cried, I implored, and conjured them to take me
and my dear children, but in vain. The noise of the
tempest drowned my voice; and the fury of the waves
was such that it was impossible for the boats to
venture back. All chance of escape seemed over. [
remarked, however, with returning hope, that the
water in the ship did not reach beyond a certain
height, and that the part where my family still were
was so firmly jammed between two rocks, that there
seemed to be no immediate danger of its sinking.
Casting my eyes southward, I perceived land, which,
notwithstanding its savage aspect, became immediately
the object of all my hope and desires.

Returning to my family, I struggled to assume
a calm demeanour. “Take courage, my dear chil-
dren!”’ I exclaimed on entering: “ All is not yet
lost; if the vessel remain fixed, our little cabin is still
beyond the reach of the waves, and if the morrow
were come, and the sea abated, we may yet reach the
land.”

This assurance was received with transports of
joy, and the children passed at once from despair to
the opposite extreme of confident hope. They re-
garded it as certain that we must speedily escape, nor
did I fail to note that the violent osqjllafions of the
vessel had ceased, and that we were no longerthrown
violently against each other by its motions. But my
wife saw through my assumed composure, and divined



12 THE SHIPWRECK.

the grief that was at my heart. I made her under-
stand by signs our entire situation, and I felt my
courage sustained by seeing her Christian resigna-
tion. “Take some refreshment,” said she, “the
mind is strengthened with the body, and perhaps this
weary night will pass away.’’ The tempest con-
tinued with unabated fury, rending away the loose
timbers from the shattered ship, and making the
whole vibrate so that we expected every moment it
would go in pieces. As I listened to the progress of
the resistless waves, I could only comfort myself with
the conviction that it was impossible the boats, whose
departure I had witnessed with such anguish, could
have escaped its fury.

My wife had been able to procure some refresh-
ments before darkness set in, and the children par-
took of them with avidity; after which they retired
to their berths, and were soon in a profound sleep,
notwithstanding the noise of the storm. Fritz, the
eldest, alone watched with us. ‘I have been con-
sidering,” said he, “ how we may yet be saved. If
we could only find some means of keeping my mother
and brothers afloat in the water, you and I are inde-
pendent of such aid, and we could swim with them to
land.’ “ A happy thought,” I replied, ‘let us take
measures for putting it to test with the dawn.””’ We
accordingly sought in our little cabin for such empty
barrels as seemed large enough to keep a person afloat.
These we tied together in pairs, leaving space enough
between them to admit of their being secured round



THE SHIPWRECK. 13

the waists and below the arms of the children. This
done, we collected together the most necessary and
portable articles which we could secure about our
persons, hoping, even if the vessel went to pieces
before morning, that we might thus be able to reach
the shore.

Fritz being by this time worn out with his exer-
tion, threw himself down on his bed, and was soon
asleep like the rest. As for me and my poor wife,
we continued to watch, trembling at every wave
which threatened to engulf us. It was a trying
night for us both. Towards dawn the wind began
to abate, and I hailed with delight the morning
rays breaking upon us as the clouds dispersed. I
called my wife and children to me on the deck,
when the latter for the first time perceived with
astonishment that we were alone. ‘ Where are
the sailors?’ they exclaimed, “‘ why are they not on
the deck with us?’ ‘ My children,’ I replied, “a
greater than man has been our protector, and he
will continue to care for us if we put our trust in
Him. Let us now to work, and try what can be
done for our own safety, for God will not succour
those who will not help themselves.” Fritz imme-
diately exclaimed that the sea seemed even now so
calm, he saw nothing to prevent us all swimming to
land. But his younger brother, Ernest, replied:
“Tt is all very well for you who are strong; but we
cannot swim, and would be drowned.” ‘Trouble
uot your minds with such apprehensions,” said I,



14 THE SHIPWRECK.

“but rather go and see if nothing can be got that
may be useful to ue in our present situation.” At
these words all dispersed in different directions, to
see what could be done. In the meantime I de-
scended to the provision-room, to ascertain if we
had still the means of present subsistence within our
reach. My wife, accompanied with the younger
children, proceeded to examine the live stock, already
severely suffering from hunger and thirst. Fritz
went in search of arms and ammunition. Ernest
laid hold of the carpenter’s tools, while Jack set off
to ransack the captain’s cabin; but the instant the
little fellow opened the door, two huge dogs sprung
out, and leaped on him with such boisterous demon-
strations of joy, that he thought they were about to
devour him. But he speedily recovered his courage,
and on my return from examining the provisions, my
surprise was great to find him mounted on the back
of the largest of them, which approached as if to wel-
come my return.

While smiling at this unexpected reception, the
various explorers returned with their prizes. Fritz
brought with him two fowling-pieces, with balls and
well-filled powder-flasks. Ernest held in his hand
his hat, filled with nails and a hammer, while the
carpenter’s pincers and rule protruded from his
pouch; and little Francis appeared behind him,
with a packet under his arm, from which protruded
fishing-hooks and lines.

“As for me,” said my wife, appearing at the



THE SHIPWRECK. 15

same instant, ‘I am the bearer of good news; sinca
I am able to inform you that we have still safely on
board a cow, an ass, two goats, six sheep, a ram, and
a sow with young—the whole of which I have good
hope may be preserved.” ‘“ All that you bring,”
said I, “is excellent, save Jack’s companions, whose
only use will be to eat up what we can recover.”
‘Not at all,” exclaimed the little fellow, in the
highest spirits, ‘‘ when we get to land, they will help
us to hunt.” “ Yes,” said J, with some despondency ;
“but how are we to reach the land?” ‘“O, easily
enough,” Master Jack replied; “can we not get
ashore in the great tub? I have sailed in it long
‘A happy

”

ago, on grandpapa’s pond at S——
thought! good counsel sometimes proceeds even from
the mouth of a child. Come along, then; let me have
the saw and hammer, with some nails, and we shall
soon see what can be done.” We descended accord-
ingly into the hold, which was already half full of
water, on which, to our great joy, we observed four
great empty casks afloat; which, without very great
difficulty, we succeeded in getting upon the lower
deck. I found them admirably adapted to my pur-
pose, and, with my son’s assistance, had them sawn
in two. This was not accomplished without much
labour, and we were glad, when it was done, to
refresh ourselves with some wine and biscuits which
we had found in the cabin. I contemplated with
much satisfaction my eight life-boats ranged in row,
and was surprised to see that my wife lookcd on



16 THE SHIPWRECK.

them with an air of despondency and fear. “TI shall
never be able,” said she, ‘to venture on the sea in
one of these.” “ Do not be so sure of that, my dear,”
J replied; “my work is not yet finished, and you
will soon see that these tubs are more to be depended
on than this shattered wreck.”

I then took a long and flexible plank, and on this
I arranged my eight tubs, nailing them firmly to it.
I secured two other planks in like manner along the
sides, and by the time my work was finished, I had
produced a very tolerable boat, divided into eight
compartments, and which appeared by no means un-
suited for navigation over a calm sea.

But I discovered, to my dismay, when my work
was done, that, with all our united efforts, we could
not move itaninch. I called for a jack-screw which
I had observed before, and meanwhile I set to work
to saw up a spar into short rollers. One of these
Fritz contrived to slip under an end of our boat,
while I raised it with the screw. I next attached a
long rope to the raft, the other end of which I
secured to the ship, and then, placing other two of
the rollers in front, I soon had the satisfaction of
seeing it in motion, with the aid of the jack, until at
length it was fairly launched into the sea, with such
impetus, that but for the precaution I had adopted, it
must have been carried far beyond our reach. The
next difficulty arose from the too great buoyancy of
our novel craft, which, I feared, must upset if we
attempted to enter it; but a sufticiency of ballast



THE SHIPWRECK. 17

soon removed this objection, and everything seemed
ready for our escape. My children raised a shout
of joy at the sight, and contended who should be the
first to enter. IJ saw well, however, that we could
not venture in it with safety, as the slightest move-
ment would still be liable to upset it. To obviate
this danger more effectually, I proceeded to construct
outriggers, similar to those which various savage
tribes employ for the same end. Having selected
two spars, I secured one across. the stem, and the
other at the stern of my little craft. The ends of
these I thrust into the bung-holes of four empty
casks; and securing them so that they should not
impede our embarkation, I looked upon my novel
boat with a degree of confidence that assured me of
safety. It was now necessary to steer it out from
among the fragments of the wreck which surrounded
it. I got into one of the open casks or tubs, and
succeeded in pushing out so as to clear the wreck,
and secure it alongside, where it could lie both
safely and accessibly, till our other preparations
were completed.

It was late before our plans were thus far carried
out, and we saw that all idea ot escape for that day
must be abandoned; we were, therefore, under the
necessity of passing another night on board the
wreck, though conscious that it. was in danger of
going to pieces before the morning. We now took,
for the first time, a hearty meal—the engrossing
nature of our work having hitherto prevented us



18 THE LANDING.

obtaining more than a slight refreshment of wine
and biscuits. I also advised my wife to exchange
her dress for that of a sailor, as so much better
suited for the exertion she would have to undergo.
This I had some~difficulty in persuading her to
adopt; but after reasoning the point with her, sh.
withdrew, and speedily returned in a dress which
had belonged to one of the young seamen. The
novel costume made her feel very awkward at first,
but the feeling soon wore off; and, as I cheered her
with good hopes for the morrow, she retired to her
hammock, and was soon enjoying a tranquil sleep—
the best preparative for the labours that were be-
fore us.

CHAPTER II.
THE LANDING.

At break of day we were all astir. After com-
mending all to the protection of our heavenly Father,
I thus addressed my children: “I hope that, by
the blessing of God, we shall soon be out of danger.
Meanwhile give the poor animals on board both food
and drink enough to last them for several days,
Perhaps we may yet be able to return and rescue
them. Let all reassemble speedily, and bring with
them such things as are indispensable for our present

> wants.” My plan was to take along with us a barrel
_ (0) .



THE LANDING. 19

of powder, three fowling-pieces, three muskets, three
pairs of pistols, and as large a stock of balls as wa
could carry. I sought out also for my wife, and
each of the children, game-bags, which had belonged
to the officers of the ship. I took next a case of
portable soup, and another of biscuit, an iron pot,
fishing-tackle, a chest of tools, and canvass enough
to make a tent. When all were ready to leave the
wreck, I found they had gathered so many things,

that, though I substituted the weightier ones for the
ballast which had been thrown in the night before,
we were still under the necessity of leaving one-half
behind.

When we were all ready to embark, I implored
the blessing of God on our endeavours. At this
moment we were saluted with the cries of the poultry
on board, which seemed to reproach us for abandoning
them. The thought immediately struck me, that we
might do well to take with us the poultry, including
the geese and ducks, as well as the pigeons; “ for,”
said I to my wife, “if we cannot feed them, they will
feed us.” Six hens were accordingly placed in one
of the tubs, along with a young and an old cock,
and over this a grating was secured to prevent their
escape; but as it was impossible either to take the
whole, or to provide for their safety on board, the
geese and ducks, as well as the pigeons, were set at
liberty, in the hope that they would reach the land.

We waited now only for my wife, who came at
length, having under oe arm a well-filled bag,

(30)



20 THE LANDING.

which she threw into the tub beside little Francis.
We all got into our places. In the first barrel was
my wife—having little Francis in the one next to
her. I took the one at the stern, in the hope of
being able to steer the little craft which was freighted
with all that was most dear to me in the world.
Each one took along with him what clothes were
indispensable; and, provided with oars, and with
floats attached to us in case of being overset, we at
length pushed out from the wreck into the open sea.
The tide was rising as we set off, and lent its aid to
further my weak endeavours. My children gazed
with longing eyes on the land which lay in sight,
and we plied our oars in hope of reaching it, though
for a time in vain. Owing to our unskilful seaman-
ship, the boat turned round instead of advancing ;
until I discovered the right way to steer, and we
began to make some progress from the ship. The
two dogs, which had remained near us since their
release, no sooner saw us quit the vessel, than they
leapt into the sea and swam after us. Turk was an
English dog, and Bill one of Danish breed. Both
were of large size, so that we dared not attempt to
take them into our boat, and I saw little chance of
their being able to swim to land; but they rested
themselves with great sagacity, by leaning their
paws on the outriggers, and so contrived to keep
alongside of us the whole way.

Our navigation, though tedious, was safe; but as
we drew uear the land, it presented no very inviting



THE LANDING, 21

aspect. The bare and arid rocks seemed to promise
nothing but wretchedness and famine. The sea was
calm; and as we drew near the shore, it was strewed
with casks, chests, and broken portions of the wreck.
In the hope of securing a supply for present necessi-
ties, I contrived to lay hold of two floating hogs-
heads, which, with the help of Fritz, were secured
by ropes, and towed along with us without difficulty.

As we drew near the shore, it seemed to lose
somewhat of its sterile look. Fritz distinguished
various trees, some of which he pronounced to be
palms, and Ernest already rejoiced in the prospect
of gathering cocoa-nuts larger and finer than any
seen in Europe. I now regretted having omitted to
bring the captain’s telescope, which lay in his cabin;
but Jack had anticipated my wants, and produced a
sinall one from his pocket, which fully answered the
purpose. With its aid, I observed that the land,
which had appeared a mere savage desert, now pre-
sented a more inviting aspect towards the right. A
strong current was carrying us from this towards
the rocky shore, when I perceived a little bay, to
which the ducks and geese had already made their
way. Into this I succeeded with some difficulty in
steering the boat, and at length found a place where
it floated alongside a low bank.

All who were able leapt at once on shore. Little
Francis alone, baffled by the height of the barrel in
which he was ensconced, had to wait till his mother
came to his aid. The dogs, which had already



22 THE LANDING:

reached the land, now ran to meet us, and testified their
joy by leaping and gamboling about us. The geese
and ducks, and even the pigeons, seemed to welcome
us, while the wild flamingoes responded in unfamiliar
notes to their discordant cries. The inharmonious
concert was, however, by no means unpleasant, as [
already beheld in these a valuable source of provi-
sions on this desert where we were cast.

Our first movement was to kneel together on the
shore, while I returned thanks to Almighty God for
his mercies, and besought the continuance of his
fatherly care. We now commenced to unload our
vessel, and already thought ourselves rich with the
little we had saved. We next sought a convenient
place for erecting our tent, and making a shelter for
the night. This was speedily discovered. One end
of a long spar was inserted in a cleft of the rock,
and the other supported by a pole set in the ground.
Over this the sail was stretched, and the two extre-
mities secured to the ground by means of wooden
pins, with the addition of some of our boxes of pro-
visions above them for greater security. We also
attached hooks to the loose part of the sail in front,
so as to enable us to close the entrance at pleasure.
This done, I sent the children to gather moss and
dried grass, which we spread out in the sun, so as to
provide us with soft beds; and while they were thus
busy, I constructed a fireplace with stones ata little
distance from the tent, on the margin of a stream. I
next gathered together a quantity of dried twigs and



TUR LANDING. 23

branches of trees, and soon had a cheerful blaze; on
this I placed the pot, filled with water, into which
I dropt several cakes of portable soup, and left my
wife, with little Francis for her assistant, to prepare
the dinner. To this Francis saw many insurmount-
able difficulties, in the absence alike of ship-steward
or butcher’s shop; and looked with no little surprise
on his father substituting for these what appeared to
him only bits of glue!

Meanwhile Fritz, who had charge of the muskets,
took one and proceeded along the river-side; while
Ernest preferred the sea-shore, and Jack betook
himself to a ridge of rocks in search of mussels.
Having now leisure to look about me, I returned to
our landing-place to try and secure the two hogs-
heads we had taken in tow. The banks, however,
were too steep for their landing; and while I was
considering how to obviate this difficulty, I was
alarmed by Jack uttering the most terrible cries. I
seized a hatchet and rushed to his aid. I found him
wading in a shallow pool, where a huge lobster had
seized him by the leg, and resisted all his attempts
at release. As I came up to him, the lobster let go
its hold and made off; but, guided by the agitation
of the water, I struck a blow at it with the hatchet,
and soon brought it maimed to shore. Jack, who
had now recovered his confidence, uttered a shout of
joy, and, taking it up with some caution, set off to
earry his prize to his mother. But he had hardly
got it in his hand, when it gave him so violent a



24 THE LANDING.

blow with its tail that he let it fall, and took to ery-
ing once more. I could not help laughing at the
discomfiture of the little fellow; but he soon recovered
his self-possession, and, seizing a stone, put an end
to its struggles.

“* Mamma!” shouted he, “ a lobster! Ernest, a
lobster! Where is Fritz? Take care, Francis, or
it will bite you.” AJ surrounded him immediately
to look at his prize. ‘ Look at the monster,” said
Jack; ‘‘ he seized me by the leg with his terrible
claws, but I soon made him repent of his assault!”
“ You little boaster,” said I, “ you would have fared
but poorly had not I come to your aid.” Ernest
urged the propriety of boiling the lobster forthwith;
but his mother, with more prudent foresight, laid it
aside for the morrow. Meanwhile, I returned to the
hogsheads, and succeeded in finding a low beach, to
which I dragged them, and soon had them safely on

. shore. I congratulated Jack, on my return, on being
the first fortunate discoverer, and promised him the
claws of the lobster for his reward. ‘ O,’’ said
Ernest, “IT also have discovered some excellent pro-
visions; only I did not bring them, as I could not
reach them without wetting my feet.” ‘* And what
were these, my dainty little man?” said I. Ernest
replied, that he had seen oysters on a rock, and had
also seen plenty of salt in the fissures of the rock,
which he thought had perhaps been produced by the
evaporation of the sea water. ‘“ Doubtless, my little
philosopher,” said I, ‘if you are sure they are



THE LANDING. 25

¢

oysters, go now and gather some for our dinner. In
our present situation every one must make himself
useful; and fear not to wet your feet. You see how
the sun has already dried both Jack’s and mine.
Bring also some of the salt about which you reason
so sagely, if you would not dine on our insipid and
tasteless soup.”

Meanwhile, my wife, having tasted the soup, an-
nounced that it was ready. ‘ But,” said she, “we
must wait for Fritz; and if le were here, I see not
how we are to take it. We cannot lift this huge pot
of boiling soup to our mouths!” It was the first time
that any of us had thought of the omission. We
looked confusedly at one another for a second, and
then burst into a hearty laugh. “ If we had only
cocoa-nuts,” said Ernest, ‘“ we could cut them in two,
and. .’ * Doubtless!” I replied; “ but why
not wish for a dozen silver spoons? The one seems
little less accessible than the other.” ‘I have it,”
exclaimed Ernest. ‘“ What is to prevent us using
oyster-shells?’’ “' Perfectly true,” said I; ‘“ that is
what Icallahappy thought. Go, therefore, in search
of the oysters; and let us hear no complaints that
our new spoons are somewhat short in the handle!’’
Jack ran to the place indicated, and was up to his
knees in the water, before Ernest, with characteristic
tardiness, had reached the margin. The oysters
were of very large size. Jack detached them in
haste, and threw them to his brother, who collected
them together in his handkerchief—taking care to





26 THE LANDING.

slip one of the largest into his pocket; and soon both
returned with a good supply.

Almost at the same moment Fritz appeared, look-
ing well satisfied, though returning with his hands
behind his back, and apparently from a fruitless
journey. “Empty handed?” said I; but his brother
slipped behind him, and called out, “ A sucking
pig! a sucking pig! where have you found it? Let
us see it?” Fritz now produced his prize with an
air of satisfaction. He told us that he had been on
the other side of the river, where he had met with
the agouti, as I pronounced his prize to be.- “ You
can have no conception,” said he, “of how different
it is from where we now are; and the beach,
which is low, is strewed with ehests, casks, planks,
and other portions of the wreck. Why not go at
once and get hold of them? and why not return to
the vessel to look after the animals we have left?
We might at least have the cow here; the biscuits
will be so much the better for her milk; and on the
other side of the river there is such excellent pastur-
age. Why should we remain an instant on this
barren spot?” Not so fast,’”’ said I, so soon as
I could get a word in. ‘“ Everything in good time,
my dear Fritz. To-morrow we shall see what can
be done. But have you discovered no traces of our
shipmates?” “Not a trace of man on earth or sea,”’
replied he, ‘but there are hogs on the shore; most
singular hogs, for they have feet like hares.”

While we were discussing what this animal could



THE LANDING. 27

be, Jack had been busily employed trying in vain to
open an oyster with his knife. I laughed at his un-
availing zeal, and placing an oyster on the hot coals,
it opened almost immediately of itself. ‘ Now,”
said I, “‘ who fancies this favourite delicacy ?” for in
truth they were no favourites of mine. After some
hesitation Jack set the example, though swallowing
it more like a doze of medicine than a bon bouche.
The rest followed his example, and aided by a sharp
appetite, pronounced them to be very good eating.
The shells were now employed for their destined use
as spoons, though not without sundry scalded fingers.
We were compeiled, therefore, to wait till the soup
should cool; but meanwhile the dogs, who were not
less hungry than ourselves, had caught sight of
Fritz’s agouti, and were tearing it in pieces before
we observed. The children shouted and screamed,
while Fritz, excited beyond all reasonable control,
seized his gun, and would have killed the poor
animals had I not withheld him, and persuaded him
of the danger and sin of giving way to such un-
governable passion.

The sun was low on the horizon before we had
finished our simple repast. Soon after, the fowls
began to gather round us to pick up the crumbs of
biscuit we had let fall. My wife observing this,
produced the bag which we had observed her drop
into the boat alongside of little Francis, and began
scattering handfuls of corn to the poultry. I com-
mended her forethought, but at the same time urged



28 A TOUR OF DISCOVERY.

her to preserve with care those precious grains, and
promised to try and recover from the wreck a store
of damaged biscuit, which would prove equally ac-
ceptable to the fowls. The pigeons now retired to
the holes in the rocks; the cocks and hens went to
roost on the top of our tent, and the ducks and gecse
withdrew to the shelter of some low bushes on the
margin of the river. We were ourselves no less
ready for repose at the close of this eventful day. I
loaded the fire-arms, and laid them within reach ;
and after we had all knelt down together, while I
thanked God for his great mercies in our deliverance,
and committed all to his care, we withdrew to our
tent for the night. Looking out once more to see
that all was quiet, I then closed the entrance of the
tent. Warm as the day had been, the night was
intensely cold, and we were glad to creep together
for the heat; but I had soon the satisfaction of seeing
my dear wife and children all in peaceful sleep,
an example which I speedily followed, and our first
night on shore passed quietly, and without alarm.

CHAPTER III.
A TOUR OF DISCOVERY.

I was awoke at the dawn by the crowing of the
cock, and immediately called my wife to consult on
our future proceedings. We agreed that it was our



4 TOUR OF DISCOVERY. 29

first duty to seek for our shipmates, and to ascertain
the nature of the country, before adopting any general
plan of procedure. My wife at once perceived that
it was impossible for the whole family to proceed on
such a tour. She proposed, therefore, of herself, to
remain behind with Ernest and the younger boys,
while I should take Fritz with me, as the strongest and
most adroit. I begged her, therefore, to prepare our
breakfast without delay, and awakening the children,
demanded of Jack what had become of his lobster.
While he ran to fetch it from a crevice in the rock,
where he had placed it beyond the reach of the dogs,
I told Fritz of our proposed excursion. “ An ex-
cursion! an excursion!” shouted the children. “‘ We
will all go together!” and they clapped their hands,
and jumped about me like young kids. “ It is im-
possible,” I said, “that you should accompany us
to-day. [Fritz and I will be able to cope with any
ordinary danger we may encounter; but it is other-
wise with you. Remain here, therefore, in safety
beside your mother, and we will leave Bill with you
for your defence, while Turk accompanies our ex-
ploring party.”

Jack generously offered all his lobster for the
journey, while Ernest remarked, with more selfish
foresight, “ They will be sure to find abundance of
rich cocoa-nuts before long, which will be a vast deal
better than your paltry lobster.” I directed Fritz to
take his gun, a game-bag, and a hatchet. I placed
also in his belt a pair of pistols, and equipped my-



30 A TOUR OF DISCOVERY.

self in like manner, adding the very necessary ac-
companiments of a stock of biscuits and a flask of
water. Our preparations were scarcely completed,
when my wife summoned us to breakfast. The lob-
ster proved so tough and unpalatable that enough
remained over, which we pocketed for our journey,
without any objection. T*ritz was now impatient to
be off, but Ernest reminded him that I had already
spoken of another duty which we must not neglect.
“ And what is that?” said he, somewhat hastily.
“We have not prayed to God,” replied Ernest seri-
ously. ‘ That is it, my dear bey,” said I, “ we are
too ready to forget God, to whom we owe all the
blessings of life, and whose protecting care we are
now so specially called upon to acknowledge.” Jack,
who had overheard me, started up and began parad-
ing about, crying, “‘ Ding, dong! to prayers! ding,
dong! ding, dong! to prayers! to prayers!”’ I re-
proved the thoughtless boy fur making light of so
serious a subject, and warned him to beware of such
untimely levity. Kneeling down together, I fervently
commended all to the care of our heavenly Father,
praying in an especial manner that he would care for
us in the journey we were about to set out on, and
watch over those who were left behind. My poor wife
did not part from us without tears, and we heard them
calling after us with mingled words of encourage-
ment and apprehension, until the noise of the river,
which we were approaching, drowned their voices.
The banks of the river were so high and steep



A TOUR OF DISCOVERY. 31

that we had to proceed some distance in search of a
ford. When at length we reached the other side, we
had to travel a considerable way through tall rank
grass, which so impeded our progress that we were
glad to return to the water-side, in hopes of getting
along with less difficulty. All at once we heard a
great noise, and saw the long grass agitated in our
rear. I stopped, and observed with satisfaction that
Fritz had already assumed a defensive attitude, and
was pointing his piece where we every moment ex-
pected the appearance of ourenemy. Great was our
joy when we found that it was none other than our
faithful dog Turk, who, having been forgotten in the
grief of parting, had been sent after us. I loaded the
trusty animal with caresses, and congratulated Fritz
on his courage and presence of mind, when a rash
movement might have deprived us of so valuable a
companion.
Pursuing our course, we arrived near the sea-shore,
‘and were filled with admiration at the beauty of the
country. We looked on every side in vain for any
traces of our companions, and examined the sand
with equally little success, in hope of discovering
some traces of their footsteps. ‘I will fire off my
musket from time to time,” said Fritz; ‘it will give
notice of our presence to them if they are within
reach.” ‘ Doubtless,’”’ I replied, “but it may also
attract the notice of savage foes, whom we have little
wish to see.” “But why,’’ said Fritz, “ give our-
selves so much trouble to seek after those who so



32 A TOUR OF DISCOVERY,

eruelly abandoned us?” ‘“ For various reasons, my
dear boy,” I replied. ‘We must not return evil
for evil; besides, it may be that they can assist us,
though now they are more likely to stand in need
of our aid.’”’ Fritz, however, still remonstrated that
we might be making our way back to the ship, and
saving the cattle; but I replied that the lives of
men were of more importance; besides which, the
sea was calin, and the cattle had abundant food for
the present, so that no immediate cause of danger
was apparent.

While thus discoursing together, we pushed along
vigorously tili we arrived at a wood which extended
to the sea. Ilere we sat down and refreshed our-
selves beside a running stream. Birds of rare plum-
age flew about us. Fritz believed that he had dis-
covered something resembling an ape among the
foliage, and the restlessness of Turk confirmed him
in this idea. Fritz ran off to assure himself of the
truth of this, and in doing so he stumbled against a
round body which lay on the ground. This he
picked up and brought to me as a bird’s nest. “ It
is a cocoa-nut,” said I, ‘do you not know that this
nut is enclosed in a thick fibrous covering, covered
with an outer skin. The latter, I perceive, is de-
cayed, which is the reason of the fibrous appearance
which has deceived you. Break it open, and you
will find the nut enclosed.” This was soon accom-
plished, to our great disappointment, for it was de
cayed and altogether uneatable,



A TOUR OF DISCOVERY. 33

“T always understood, father,” said Fritz, “that
cocoa-nuts were full of a pleasant and refreshing
milk.” “You believed rightly,” I replied; “the
nut is pleasant both for food and drink when it hangs
ripe on the tree. If it falls on a good soil, it will
germinate, and the bud soon burst its covering and
grow up to become, in course of time, a large tree,
but if it fall where no suitable soil encourages vege-
’ Fritz con-
tinued his questions as we proceeded on our journey,
and after a time he was so fortunate as to find another
cocoa-nut sufficiently fresh to afford us a pleasant
repast. Our progress was somewhat slow, as we had
frequently to clear a way with our hatchets. At
length we reached the water-side; the wood became
less dense on our right, and we observed that some
of the trees were of a peculiar kind. “‘ See, father,”
said Fritz, ‘‘ how these trees are covered with wens.”
As we approached, I discovered, to my great. satis-
faction, that it was a gourd tree, of which many more
were visible. Fritz was greatly puzzled to conceive
what the singular protuberances could be. “ Try,”
said IJ, “if you can get hold of one of them, and we
will examine it.” ‘Here is one,’ he exclaimed,
“ very like an ordinary gourd, only it is much harder.”
‘Of this,” said I, ‘we shall be able to make plates,
cups, and bottles; this is what is called the gourd
tree.” Fritz inquired if the gourd was fit for eating.
I replied that it was harmless, but not particularly
palatable; the chief use of the tree to savage nations,

tation, it decays, as you have now seen.’



34 A TOUR OF DISCOVERY.

is to make dishes for holding, and even for cooking
their food. The latter idea seemed to puzzle Fritz.
‘Tt is impossible!’ he exclaimed, “the gourd itself
would be burnt by the fire.” I told him that they
were not exposed to the fire; that the Indians could
boil their food in them without their being near the
fire. ‘Truly it passes my comprehension,’’ said-
Fritz, “it seems little short of magic.” “So it is
with men in general,” said I to him, smiling, “ when-
ever they cannot explain anything: without putting
themselves to the trouble of reflecting, they pronounce
a prodigy, a miracle, what is perchance one of the
most ordinary operations of nature. Observe, in the
present instance, when it is proposed to boil a piece
of fish or flesh in the gourd, it is filled with water,
into which red-hot stones are dropped successively,
till the water boils.”

We now set about fashioning our gourds into
dishes. Fritz took his knife to cut the gourd in two,
but he found it much more difficult than he antici-
pated. The hard rind resisted the blade, and on
applying more violent force, it suddenly cut in a
wrong direction, Meanwhile I had taken a string
which I drew tightly round the gourd, and then
striking it with the flat handle of my knife, till an
incision was made, I gradually tightened it till the
nut was separated into two equal parts. This I ex-
plained to Fritz I had learned from books of travels,
which describe it as the method employed by the
natives, who have no such knives as ours. I next



A TOUR OF DISCOVERY. 30

explained how they made bottles, which greatly in-
terested him. “ They tie a band round the young,
soft gourd,” said I, “ sufficiently near the stalk for
the purpose. This checks the growth at the desired
point, while it continues to expand beyond it, and
then vessels can be made to grow with long or short
necks, according to the will of the designer.”

We now resumed our march, leaving our newly-
manufactured dishes to dry in the sun, having first
taken the precaution to fill them with sand to pre-
vent them from shrinking. As we walked aloug,
Fritz tried his hand at converting a part of one of
the calabashes into a spoon, while I essaved to make
another out of a piece of cocoa-nut shell; but it must
be owned that little could be said in praise of either
of our productions. We recalled to mind the manu-
factures of the natives which we had seen in museums
at home, and were compelled to own that the savages
were our masters in such work. Thus conversing,
we walked on together till, after a journey of about
four hours, during which we had looked in vain in
every direction for traces of our former shipmates,
we arrived at a neck of land which stretched far into
the sea, and rese in one part to a considerable height.
This appeared a most suitable point of observation,
and we accordingly proceeded, though not without
some difficulty, to mount to the top. On attaining
the summit, a wide and varied prospect stretched out
before us; but we looked in vain for any traces of

human beings. Nature appeared in all her wild
(30) 3



36 A TOUR OF DISCOVERY.

charms, and though destitute of culture, displayed
a rich profusion unknown to our European climates.
The luxuriant verdure of the shores, and the placid
stillness of the sea, which was here enclosed by a
large bay terminating in another promontory beyond,
would have filled our minds with unmingled xatis-
faction, but for the reflection that the companions we
had been in search of probably now lay engulfed
beneath the sea that looked so calm and gentle.
This did not, however, diminish our sense of the
Divine goodness which had rescued us from a similar
fate, and cast us on a shore which, though apparently
without inhabitants, held out so good a prospect. of
needful supplies for those who had now entered
involuntarily on its possession. We had left home
with the intention of settling as colonists in a remote
and strange land, and I remarked accordingly to
Fritz, we might comfort ourselves with the reflection,
that, while we could have gone no whither without
encountering difficulties, our destined port might
have proved destitute of many advantages which
seemed here within our reach.

We now descended the hill, directing our course
towards a clump of palms, to arrive at which we
were obliged to traverse a jungle covered with reeds
and long grass, which greatly impeded our progress.
We advanced with caution, being apprehensive of
treading on a snake or some other venomous reptile,
such as usually haunt the like localitics. As a fur-
ther precaution, we made Turk go before us to give



A TOUR OF DISCOVERY, 37

timely notice of danger. As we went



one of the largest reeds, as a convenicnt weapon
against any assailant. Soon after I okserved a
glutinous sap exude from the ent end of my staff,
Ww eal T had the



osity to taste, and was soon con-
vinced that the r ne tI held in my han st he a
sugar-eane, IT applicd it to my mouth, and se

on ae the juice, that it was both agreeable and
very refreshing. I did not immediately announce my
discovery to Fritz, preferring that he should make
it for himself; I therefore desived him ta cut one
down for his own defenee, and soon saw him bran-
dishing it about his head, and striking right and left
as he cleared his way through the dense growth of
reeds. The effect of this was as F anticipated; tha
sap soon exuded im considerable abundance, and I



sav him put his hand te his mouth and exelain
aloud, “ l’athor! father! a sugar-eane! Only taste
it. How charmed my mother and brothers will be
at the discovery!’ He was so delighted with this
novel and palatablo discovery, that I was obliged at
leagth to intorfere, under the apprehension that he
would injure himself by his excess; and T took
advantage of the favourable opportunity for urging

upon hin the necessity of mederation and etapa



ance, even in the most rational and innocent enjoy-
ments.

Fritz now gathored a bundle of the best eanes he
vould select, to earry home. We soon arrived at a
thicket of palms, which we entered, and seated cur.



38 A TOUR OF DISCOVERY.

selves to enjoy our repast under its shade. Sudden
a number of large monkeys, frightened by our ap.
pro oach, and by the barking of Turk, dispersed from
the spot, running up the palm trees with such rapi-
dity that we had scarcely observed them before they
were at the top. Ilaving reached this safe elevation,
they proceeded to grin and chatter at us, expressing
their anger at the disturbance by the most diseordant
uotses. I observed immediately that the trees were
coeca-nut palms, and I immediately thought of hav-
ing recourse to the services of the monkeys for a
supply of fruit. Fritz, on the contrary, irritated by
their derisive gestures and noise, had already seized
his gun, and was about to shoot them, when I re-
strained his hand, and urged on him the folly and
crueity of killing a poor animal that could be of no
value as food, and excited no just apprehensions of
danger. ‘“ You will see now,” said I, “how much
more useful and simple is the mode of dealing with
them.’ I accordingly collected some stones, and
began to throw them at the monkeys, and though I
could not nearly reach them on their lofty pereh, they
exhibited every mark of irritation, and, seizing the
cocca-nuts within their reach, they Hacer at them in 4
shower at our heads.

Fritz laughed heartily at the success of my stra-
fagem, and when the shower of cocoa-nuts had ceased,
T gathered as many as I could conveniently carry.
We now sought a convenient spot for enjoying the
repast thus provided, and after sucking some of the



RETURN FROM THE TOUR OF DISCOVERY. 39

mill by means of the holes which we pierced in the
end of the nuts, we broke them open with the hatchet,
and ate, with much satisfaction, of the kernel. An-
other application to the juice of the sugar-cane com-
pleted our repast, and Turk received, with abundant
symptoms of satisfaction, the remainder of the lobster,
which we no longer valued. I now gathered together
such of the cocoa-nuts as had long stalks, and threw
them over my shoulder. Fritz resumed his bundle
of sugar-canes, and we set out on our return to our
new home,

CHAPTER IY.

RETURN FROM THE TOUR OF DISCOVERY—NOCTURNAL
ALARM,

We had not proceeded far on our return when Fritz
began to show symptoms of fatigue. IIe passed the
bundle of canes frequently from one shoulder to the
other, and at length exclaimed, ‘I could not have
believed that a mere bundle of canes would have
proved so burdensome. But I shall be well repaid
by the pleasure they will afford to my mother and
brothers.” I extracted from his bundle a cane for a
staff, and he followed my example. By-and-by I
began to suck the cane, having first made an in-
cision at the nearest joint, so as to admit of a free
eurrent of air through the pores. Fritz, observing



40 RETURN FROM THE

my enjoyment of the refreshing luxury, attempted to
follow my example, butin vain. ‘ What can be the
reason,” he at length exclaimed, with* some im-
patience, ‘ that, though my cane secms to be full of
juice, I cannot get a drop out of it?” I replied,
laughing, that it was because he neglected to employ
the right means. “Ah!” said he, “TI remember
the reason now. I must make an incision above the
nearest knot, and then, when by suction I have
exhausted the air in my mouth, it will rush by the
opening through the cane, and carry the juice along
with it into the vacuum. But T fear, if we proeced
at this rate, owr canes will contain little sugar by the
time we get home.”’ ‘Tt has been my idea for some
time,” I replied, ‘not indeed from apprehension of
our own forgetfulness of those who await us, but from
the certainty that the juice of the newly-cut sugar-
cane, when exposed to such heat as we are now ex-
periencing, is certain to turn sour in a very short
time.”

“Well,” said Fritz, “if the sugar is spoiled, I
shall have the satisfaction of carrying home a good
supply of the cocoa-milk, with which I have filled
this tin flask.” “T fear, my dear boy,” I replied,
“that your labour in that respect will prove equally
vain. The cocoa-nut milk is equally liable to be
thus affected; and, exposed as it is in your tin-flask
to the direct rays of the sun, I would not greatly
wonder if it is already vinegar.” ‘“ How provoking!”
he exclaimed, “(I must examine it immediately.”

se



TOUR OF DISCOVERY, Al

But he had scarcely loosened the cork of his flask,
with a view of tasting its contents, when it flew out
with a loud report, the milk following it like new-
drawn champagne. ‘ My prediction, I see, is in the
way of being verified shortly,” I remarked; “ but
take care, my boy, what use you make of that potent
beverage. It will go to your head.” “QO! father,
only taste it: it is delightful. So far from being
vinegar, it is like fine new wine. The treat I had
intended for them will be even greater than I anti-
cipated.” “ Be not too sanguine,” I replied; “ this
is the first fermentation. The same phenomenon
occurs in the juice of the sugar-cane, the milk of
the cocoa-nut, and even in honey mixed with water.
In its present state it is indeed a sort of wine, but it
will not Iast. A second, though slower, fermentation
will make vinegar of it before you can reach home.
But let us enjoy it while it lasts, though with mode-
ration, if we would wish to escape the effects which
all fermented liquors produce.”

Refreshed by this unexpected treat, we proceeded
with renewed vigour, and soon arrived at the place
where we had left our calabashes to dry in the sun.
We found them already quite firm and hard, and put
them in our bags with much satisfaction. We had
searcely reached the skirts of the wood where we
had dined, when Turk darted fiercely in among a
troop of monkeys whom we had surprised at their
gambols on the grounds; and before we made up to
him, he had already killed a female ape, and was



43 RETURN FROM THE

devouring her. A young ape which had ‘clung to its
mother, and probably retarded her flight, watched
from a little distance with impotent rage the cruel
death of its mother. Fritz was in such haste to stop
the dog, that he flung away hat, bottle, canes, and
everything, but in vain. Before he could come up
to it, Turk was already devouring his prey. Ap-
proaching more leisurely, I found, on my arrival, a
very different scene. So soon as the little monkey
saw Fritz approach, it sprang nimbly on his back,
and held so firmly by his hair, that neither his cries
nor most violent efforts could disengage it. I could
not help laughing at the ludicrous scene; and as I
‘aw there was no danger, the poor little ape being in
even greater terror than Fritz, the cries and grimaccs
of the two were sufficiently diverting. I in vain tried
to disengage the little monkey from his hair. It
elung to hin, as if resolved to make him its protector.
“There is no choice,” I said, langhing; ‘it is ob-
vious that the little orphan, having lost its mother,
has chosen you as its adopted father.” I caressed it,
and offered it something to eat, and at length succeeded
in gently disengaging it. I took the poor little thing in
my arms like an infant, and could not help regarding
it with pity. It was obviously incapable of providing
its own food, and if abandoned by us must inevitably
perish. Unwilling as I was to add another to our
number under present circumstances, I yiclded to
Fritz’s importunities, and agreed that it should be
taken home on condition that he should take the



TOUR OF DISCOVERY. 3

entire charge of it. This he cheerfully consented
fo. *

Turk was meantime feasting on his strange prey.
Fritz would have driven him from it; but while such
a proceeding could have answered no good purpose,
I already saw that so large and voracious a dog must
be allowed the full license of a hunter, if we would
not have him become a burden, and even a terror to
us. We did not wait to see him finish his revolting
feast. The young monkey returned to its place on
Fritz’s shoulder, who no longer objected to the burden,
while I took his bundle of canes. Turk rejoined us
after a time; and was received at first with many
reproaches and menaces by Fritz, who had already
forgot how very recently he had been on the eve of
committing a similar act, with no such justification
as the poor dog had. The sight of him, however,
was even more disquieting to the monkey. It re-
treated to the opposite shoulder, and at length took
shelter in his bosom, cowering in with all the action
ofa frightened child. At this momenta lucky thought
struck Fritz. Passing a cord round the neck of
Turk, he placed the ape on his back, and passing it
round its waist, he said, “Since you have killed the
mother, it is only just that you should bear the child.”
The dog was at first inclined to be rebellious; but
we succeeded at last, by alternate scolding and caress-
ing, in reconciling him to his burden. As an addi-
tional precaution, however, Fritz retained hold of the
string, so as to prevent Turk wandering out of siglit.



44 RETURN FROM THE

This expedient greatly amused me: “ We will
return like a couple of showmen,” said I; “ your
brothers will be in eestacies at the sight.” “ Yes,
indeed,” replied Fritz; ‘and Jack will find in our
little cavalier a model for grimace, and an excuse
for his impertinent tricks.” ‘‘ Do youthen, my son,”
said I, addressing him with some gravity, “take
your mother and myself as your models, and display
greater forbearance towards your brothers. Such
bitter remarks on the levity and sportiveness of your
younger brothers are not such as I like to hear from
you.” Fritz promptly acknowledged the impropriety
of his remark, which had been uttered without reflec-
tion; and we resumed the conversation which had so
pleasantly beguiled the way, so that we were on the
river’s bank, and near our new home again before we
were aware. Jill was the first to perceive our ap-
proach, and set up a joyous bark, to which Turk
responded with such vehemence, that the poor little
monkey sprung with terror from his back; and so
soon as the cord was loosed, he sprung on to Fritz’s
shoulder, and would on no account quit it. Turk,
relieved from his restraint, jumped into the river, and
was speedily among the dear circle we had left; so
"that, before we had reached the place where we had
crossed in the morning, the whole family were assem-
bled to welcome us on the other side; and we were
speedily in one another's arms.

The children were impatient to examine what we
had brought back with us, and presently set up a ery



TOUR OF DISCOVERY. 45

of joy. “A monkey! a living moukey !—how did
you get him, Fritz? Whata funny fellow! IPf we
had only something to give him. But what are we
to do with these staves? What sort of things are
these papa carries?” My wife was no less intent on
learning of our adventures and our welfare, so that it
was impossible to reply to their eager questionings.
When their first transports of joy were somewhat
moderated, I told them what we had observed of the
nature of the country, and its great fruitfulness.
“ But,” Tadded, “ we have been entirely unsuccessful
in recovering the slightest traces of our lost com-
panions.” ‘God’s will be done,” said my wife,
earnestly; “let us be thankful for our own great
mercies. This day has seemed an age till your safe
and happy return. Let us relieve you of your bur-
dens, and come and tell us of your adventures.”

Jack accordingly took my gun, Ernest the cocoa-
nuts, Francis the calabashes, and my wife the game-
bags. rita distributed his sugar-canes among them,
and replaced the monkey on Turk’s back, to the
great amusement of the children. He then begged
of Ernest to take his gun; but he thought himself
already sufficiently burdened with the cocoa-nuts,
though ignorant of what they were, and would have
refused had not his mother kindly interfered, and
relieved him of the first load.

“Tf Ernest knew what he was relinquishing,” said
Fritz, “he would not have parted with them so
readily. These are cocoa-nuts you have given to

b



46 RETURN FROM THE

mother.’ ‘ Cocoa-nuts !” exclaimed Ernest in great

delight ; ‘give them to me, mother. I shall carry
them and the gun too.” But his mother told him
one was enough for him, and, though tempted in his
eager desire for the coveted nuts, he was prevented
by shame from asking her to carry the gun. “ But,”
said he, ‘I can fling away these sticks, and then |
shall have a hand disengaged.”’ “I advise you not,”
said Fritz, ‘unless you would repent still more of
your second act. These sticks, as you call them, are
sugar-canes.” ‘ Sugar-canes !”’ exclaimed the whole
in one voice; and little farther progress could be
made, till Fritz had told of his discovery, and shown
cach how to suck the juice of the canes.

Thus conversing, we reached our tent, where we
found an excellent repast awaiting us. On one side
of the fire, fish of several sorts were cooking on a
wooden spit thrust through them, and supported on
two forked sticks; on the other side was a goose
roasting by means of a similar contrivance, while a
range of large oyster-shells supplied the place of «
dripping-pan. A pot suspended over the fire already

2

gave promise, by its odour, of excellent soup; and |
also perceived that one of the packages we had re-
covered from the sea had been opened in my absence,
and proved to contain excellent Dutch cheeses, care-
fully packed in lead. The whole seemed wonder-
fully to exeeed what could have been hoped for. I
congratulated them on their diligence in my absence,
though I could not altogether conceal my sense of



TOUR OF DISCOVERY. a7
my wife’s improvident liberality in having reeoursa
to our small number of poultry, when other provi-
sions were so abundant. ‘Trouble not vour mind,
my dear,” said my wife, “it is not one of our own
geese which vou sce roasting, but a wild bird which
Ernest killed, and which, he assures me, is good for

* exclaimed Ernest, ‘it is a

eating.” ‘Yes, father,’
stupid penguin. I knocked it down with a stick, at
no great distance. I have preserved the head and
feet for you to examine. It has a long beak and
web feet, and exactly resembles the penguins in nv
natural history book.’’ I commended the intelligent
reasoning of the boy, and was proceeding to commu-
nicate some farther information about the bird, when
my wife interrupted me. ‘There is a time for
everything,” said she; ‘besides, do you not see that
the child’s eyes are all the while fixed on the cocoa-
nuts? Gratify the longings by a sight of one of
them, and a taste of its contents.” “ With pleasure,”
I replied; “but you must apply to Fritz to show you
the way, and do not forget, meanwhile, that the poor
monkey has lost his mother’s milk.” “ But he will
eat nothing,” said Jack; ‘I have offered him every-
thing I could think of’ I explained to him that it
was probable the poor little animal had hitherto been
nourished solely by its mother’s milk, and recom-
mended Fritz to try him with the milk of the cocoa-
nut till more suitable food could be found. Jack
would have given the whole supply to the new
favourite, but Ernest had no idea of such self-denial,



48 RETURN FROM THE

and little Francis also protested that he must tasta
the cocoa-nut himself. ‘So must we all,” said his
mother, smiling. ‘ Let us have our supper now,
and the cocoa-nuts will suffice for dessert.”

We seated ourselves in a circle on the grass. My
wife distributed the food in cur newly-manufactured
dishes, and the appearance of comfort which it gave
to our repast greatly exceeded our anticipations.
The children had already broken several of the cocoa-
nuts, and pronounced them to be excellent; nor was
the little monkey forgot. They dipped the corner
of their handkerchiefs in the milk, and then gave it
him to suck, which he seemed to do with relish. He
appeared already at home with them, and there
seemed no reason to doubt that we would be able to
vear the little creature. We discussed the provisions
with a good appetite, and pronounced them excel-
lent. The penguin, indeed, proved a somewhat
tough and unpalatable morsel; but I set the example,
and was soon followed by the whole, in partaking of
the well-cooked, though somewhat strong and fishy-
tasted dish. Tritz now begged leave to treat us all
to a taste of his delicious champagne, to which I
offered no objection, only recommending that he
should set the example i.. tasting it. Great, indecd,
was his mortification on finding that it was already
changed into vinegar. My wife, however, regarded
the transformation with no such feclings of regret.
By her advice it was employed as sauce to the pen-
guin, and greatly improved it, correcting the flavour



TOUR OF DISCOVERY. 49

which had rendered it wnpalatable. It served also
as a pleasant accompaniment to the fish, so that
Fritz was reconciled to see that his exertions had not
proved altogether in vain,

The boys were thoughtlessly proceeding to break
the remainder of the cocoa-nuts, but I stopped them,
and calling for the saw I carefully cut the shells in
two; and, after we had scooped out the rind, each
of them supplied a couple of excellent cups or basins,
so that we were already furnished with a very re-
spectable table equipage, though we had been neces-
sitated only the day before to scald our fingers in
our attempts to get at the soup.

The sun had reached the horizon as we concluded
our repast, and we immediately set about our pre-
parations for the night, mindful of how rapidly
darkness closed in upon us. My wife, with con-
siderate attention, had collected a considerable quan-
tity of dry moss and grass, which was now strewed
in the tent, and made an attractive and comfortable
couch, on which the labours of the day had disposed
all of us to stretch our tired limbs in anticipation of
welcome repose. The poor little monkey accompa-
nied us into the tent, and was soon comfortably
disposed between Fritz and Jack, wrapped in a
plentiful covering of dry hay. The fowls went to
roost, as before, on the top of the tent; and having
seen all arranged, as on the previous night, I closed
the curtain of the tent, and was soon buried in pro-
found sleep.



50 RETURN FROM THE TOUR OF DISCOVERY.

We had not slept long when a disturbance among
the poultry, followed by the violent barking of the
dogs, awoke us all. I jumped up quickly, and
rushed out, followed by my wife and Fritz, each of
whom had seized a gun. By the light of the moon
we perceived our two gallant dogs surrounded by
about a dozen jackalls. Four of them were soon
strangled in the gripe of our faithful defenders; but
the remainder still pressed on them, and threatened
to overpower them, when a well-directed shot from
both Fritz and myself laid two of their assailants
dead, and put the others to flight, with some of their
number wounded.

The dogs, according to their nature, made a meal
on the eareass of one of their fallen foes; but Fritz,
having obtained my leave, singled out the one which
had fallen by his shot, and dragging it, not without
some difficulty, near the tent, placed it under cover,
so as to show it to his brothers in the morning. We
onee more retired to our homely couch, and slept
soundly without further disturbance, till awoke in
the morning by the crowing of the cock, which
summoned us to consult about the prosecdings of
another day.



RETURN TO TIE WRECK. Al

CHAPTER Y.
RETURN TO THE WRECK.

“My dear wife,” said I, “it is not without consider-
able anxiety that I look forward to the work that is
before us. A voyage to the wreck is indispensable,
if our cattle are to be saved, beside the many other
useful articles we were forced to leave behind. On
the other hand, equally indispensable duties seem to
call for my stay on shore, and especially the neces-
sity for erecting a secure and commodious dwelling
to shelter us from cold as well as outward dangers.”
“With patience, order, and perseverance,” said my
wife, cheerfully, ‘all will go well. We must be
content to do one thing at a time. I confess I would
prefer that the return to the wreck could be avoided;
but since it must be so, the sooner you go the better.”
It was agreed, accordingly, that my wife should re-
main at home with the younger boys, as on the
preceding day, while Fritz and I should proceed te
the wreck.

I then called on the children to awake and dress
themselves. Fritz, who was the first to get up, ran
to find his jackall, which had already stiffened in the
cold night air. He placed it, therefore, erect at the
tent door, and waited impatiently for his brothers to
come out. But the dogs were before them, and see-
ing their enemy standing apparently ready to assail

(80) A



o2 RETURN TO THE WRECK.

them, they set up a fierce howl, and were with
difficulty restrained from tearing it in pieces. The
children ran out forthwith to learn the occasion of
the noise, with Jack at their head, accompanied by
his little bed-fellow perched on his shoulder; but no
sooner did the monkey perceive the jackall, than he
fled into the tent, and ensconced himself in the moss
till only his nose was visible. The children were
greatly astonished at this strange sentinel at the
door. Ernest pronounced it to be a fox, Jack a wolf,
and Francis a yellow dog. Fritz laughed at their
different names, and especially ridiculed that of
Ernest, who was greatly offended at being made the
subject of his merriment. I had at length to inter-
fere to restore harmony, and for this purpose told
them that the animal was called a jackall, but at the
same time, I added, this laughter of Fritz had been
altogether misplaced, for the jackall partakes of the
nature of the wolf, the fox, and the dog, so that there
was good sense and probability in all the names.
Having thus reconciled their differences, I summoned
them to our morning devotions, after which we
proceeded to breakfast. My wife had nothing to
place before us but biscuits, which were so dry and
hard that they almost bade defiance to our hungry
teeth. Fritz asked for cheese to eat with it, while
Ernest, who had been already examining one of the
unopened casks, now came to me and said, “ Father,
'f we had only butter to these biscuits it would be a
vast improvement.” “ Always with these foolish i



RETURN TO THE WRECK. 53

of yours,’ I replied; “ don’t you kuow, my boy,
that a morsel of this good cheese is worth all the
butter in the world when we have it not.” “ But
perhaps my 2/3 might not be so foolish,” said Ernest,
“if you would open that cask.” ‘What cask do
vou talk about?” saidI. “It is this cask I mean, to
be sure,” replied he. ‘ I have already had my knife
into it, and it is filled with excellent salt butter.”
“ Indeed,” said I, “your love for good things is of
service for once. Come, boys, who loves bread and
butter?” After some consideration, I cautiously
made a small opening in the lower end of the cask,
so as to extract a little of the butter without exposing
the whole to injury by the air and heat of the sun.
We then sat down with one of our cocoa-nut vessels
filled with good salt butter. We now toasted our
biscuits at the fire, and applying a plentiful covering
of butter when they were hot, we soon converted them
into an edible and most excellent repast, on which
we made a hearty breakfast. While we were thus
employed, the dogs had remained patiently at our
side, expecting to share in our repast, and I remarked
what a cause of gratitude it was that we had been
provided with such faithful protectors, and observing
the marks of the jackall’s fangs still visible on them,
J reminded them that it was our duty to do what we
could both for their protection and comfort. “If we
could find on board the ship,” said Fritz, ‘a pair of
spiked collars, they would prove the best protectors for
Turk and Bill in case they have again to encounter such



54 RETURN TO THE WRECK.

fierce assailants.” ‘O1” said Jack, in his usually
ready way, “if my mother will only help me, I ean
make them collars myself very well!” “ Very good,
my little man,” said I, “exercise your inventive
faculties, and let us see what you can devise. You,
Fritz, come along with me. Your mother and I
have already decided that it is necessary I should
return to-day. to the wreck to bring back as much as
is recoverable. You will accompany me, while your
brothers remain to assist their mother.”

While Fritz made ready our primitive boat of
casks, I erected a flag-staff on an eminence near the
shore, and attached to it a piece of sail-cloth, to serve
as a signal between the vessel and the shore. This,
I directed my wife, should be allowedgto fly so long
as all was well, and if it continued to certify to us of
their safety, I had prepared her for the possibility of
our remaining all night at the wreck. I directed
her, however, in case of any threat of danger, to pull
down the signal, and fire three guns, when we were
to hasten to the shore.

We took nothing with us but our guns and ammu-
nition, relying on the provisions left on board. Fritz,
however, insisted on taking the little monkey with
him, that he might regale it with the cow’s milk.
We quitted the shore in silence, and not without
some thoughts of danger at the prospect of this
necessary separation. When we had got a little way
from the shore, I perceived that a current set in in the
direction we were going, occasioned by the force of



RETURN TO THE WRECK. 55

the river, and we were glad to avail oursclves of its
aid. Though altogether inexperienced in maritime
affairs, I succeeded in steering our boat so as to keep
its head to the current, and we were carried by this
means a considerable way towards the wreck, with
little or no exertion on our parts. When this failed
us, We resumed our oars, and soon moored our boat
alongside of the vessel.

So soon as the boat was secured, Fritz jumped on
the deck, with the monkey on his shoulder, and
hastened to the place where the cattle were secured.
I was gratified to see him take so kind an interest in
the little creature. The animals welcomed us with
manifest joy, though it was obvious that they had
not suffered fyom our absence, as a part of their food
still remained untasted. The monkey found the
milk of the cow most palatable, and greatly amused
us by the lively grimaces with which he testified his
joy. Having seen that the animals were sufliciently
supplied with food and drink, we took some refresh-
ment ourselves, and consulted on the best mode of
proceeding. Tritz counselled that we should begin
by providing a sail for the boat, ‘for,’ said he,
“the current which was such a help to us coming
can only retard our return, while the wind that was
against us will amply supply its place when so pro-
vided.” The advice seemed excellent, and we forth-
with proceeded to put it in execution. A plank was
bored by means of a chisel, and fastened across one
of the casks; into this we inserted a pole strong



56 RETURN TO THE WRECK.

enough for a mast, and secured it, by means of ropes,
to both ends of our boat; a cross spar was soon rigged
on this, and a triangular piece of canvass secured to it
by means of cords, sothat we could shift it in any way
to take advantage of the wind. ‘To these useful addi-
ditions Fritz added a red streamer from the mast-head,
and named our improved craft the Deliverance. 'To
complete the vessel, I added two pieces of raised wood
at either end to act as grooves for inserting an oar, so
as to admit of steering it equally freely either wav.

While thus employed the day had already advanced
so, that I saw it would be impossible to effect any-
thing satisfactory without spending the night where
‘we were. We aceordingly made a concerted signal
to inform my dear wife of our intention, for which
she was already in some degree prepared; and |
employed the rest of the time in emptying our boat-
casks of the stone ballast we had brought in them
from the shore, in order to substitute for it such
things as seemed most likely to prove of use to us.
The ship had been freighted for the purpose of esta-
blishing a new colony at the place whither we were
bound, so that it contained an unusually large supply
of objects peculiarly suited to our present cireum
stances, and our greatest difficulty seemed to arise
from the necessity of selection. Powder, shot, tools,
and pieces of canvass and clothing, were speedily
substituted for the ballast. Our experience had also
taught us already the need of an abundant supply of
knives, forks, spoons, and kitchen utensils of all sorts,



RETURN TO THE WRECK. 57

We found also in the captain’s cabin a service of silver
plate, covers and dishes of pewter, and a hamper filled
with choice wines. All these were secured, along
with a stock of provisions, destined for the officers’
table, including portable soup, cases of prepared
meats, Westphalia hams, sausages, and a supply of
potatoes, maize, wheat, and other valuable seeds.
Fritz also got hold of some hammocks and blankets;
we collected as many implements of husbandry as it
was possible to put into our boat; and to all these I
added a barrel of sulphur to make matches with, so
that our boat was soon loaded nearly to the brim; and
had not the sea been perfectly calm, the attempt to
navigate it would have been attended with no little
danger.

The shades of evening now began to set in, and
after exchanging signals once more with those on
shore, to assure ourselves of their safety, we made
provision for passing another night at sea. Having
supped heartily on the abundant stores within our
reach, we commended ourselves and the dear objects
of our care and anxiety to the protection of Heaven,
and withdrew to the couches we had provided. The
day’s labours had not been accomplished without
considerable fatigue, and Fritz was soon sleeping
soundly; but I could not close my eyes, from the
recollection of the dangers of the previous night, and
the uncertainty of what new and unknown perils my
wife and children might be exposed to in my absence.
I comforted myself, however, with the thought of the



58 FLOATING THE HERD.

faithful dogs which had already proved such efficient
protectors to us all, and felt grateful to NMeaven for
having given us so ready a means of defence.

CHAPTER YI.
FLOATING THE HERD.

Wirn.the first clear light in the morning, I jumped
on deck, and, with the help of the large telescope,
had the satisfaction of not only seeing the signal
which denoted the safety of my family still flying at
the post, but while Fritz was busy preparing our
breakfast I kept my eye on the tent, and at length
was gratified by seeing my wife come out of it and
look with attention towards the wreck. We ex-
changed signals of mutual recognition by pulling our
flags up and down, and then Fritz and I proceeded
to do ample justice to a breakfast of biscuit, ham, and
wine. Being thus freed from all anxiety about those
we had left on shore, we now set about the consider-
ation of the possibility of rescuing the eattle from the
wreck.

We had set out for the wreck with no definite
ideas on this subject. Fritz now suggested a raft;
but even had we been able to construct one suffi-
ciently large, how were we to get such unmanage-
able passengers as a cow, an ass, or a sow, on board,
or, when there, to keep them from upsetting it? The



FLOATING THE HERD. 59

sheep and goats might indeed have been removed by
such means, but what to do with the larger animals
puzzled me. Fritz’s mind was fertile in suggestions,
the most of which, however, were made without re-
flection, and altogether unpracticable. “ Why not,”
he at length exclaimed, “just throw them into the
sea, and let them swim ashore for themselves?”
“That,” said I, “might answer with the fat sow,
which I am least anxious about, but it is useless for
the rest.’’ ‘Then why not provide them all with
swimming-jackets,” said the boy, laughing. “ An
excellent idea!’ I exclaimed immediately. “ Let
us lose no further time, but set to work.”

We selected a sheep for our first experiment, and
having attached floats to its sides, threw it into the
sea. I watched the poor animal with a mixture of
hope and fear. It sunk, and I thought was never to
reappear; but presently we saw its head appear above
the water, where it floated without any exertion.
With some little difficulty we got a rope about it, and
drew it back to the wreck. We now proceeded to
provide the whole with this novel swimming apparatus.
Twoempty water-casks, secured by means of sail-cloth
bands and ropes, were attached. one on each side of
the cow and ass. A quantity of cork which we dis-
covered on board proved a more convenient means
for providing the smaller animals with floats. The
large sow was the most troublesome, but after two
hours’ hard labour we had the satisfaction of secing
all ready. We next tied a cord to the head or horns



60 FLOATING THE HERD.

of each, with a piece of wood at the end. The force
of the waves had already made a considerable breach
in the side of the wreck, and this we soon enlarged
sufficiently to give free egress to the cattle. ‘The ass
was the first to take the water, where he floated in
gallant style. We were soon successful in setting
the whole afloat; and getting into our boat, we pushed
about among them till we had secured the whole of
the cords, and taken them in tow. The sow alone
proved completely unmanageable. We were glad to
let it go, but it soon made for the shore of its own
accord, and was the first to land. We now discovered
the advantage of our mast and sail. Favoured by a
slight breeze, we were carried gently towards the
land, dragging the whole flock at our stern, which,
had we depended on our oars alone, we saw must
have been left to their fate. As we were thus mov-
ing towards the shore, I was suddenly filled with
alarm by my son, who called out, ‘ Father! father!
we are lost.” J had been watching with the tele-
scope our party on shore, who seemed to be preparing
for some excursion. On looking about I observed an
enormous fish making towards our boat; but just as
it was about to seize one of the sheep, Fritz aimed
his gun and fired with such success, that he hit the
monster in the head. It plunged immediately and
disappeared, leaving, however, a track of blood
behind it, which showed that the shot had taken
good effect.

T laid aside my telescope for my gun, in ease of a



FLOATING THE HERD. 61

repetition of the attack, and with the rudder in hand
guided the boat without further risk to a convenient
place for the cattle landing. We then detached the
cords, and had soon the satisfaction of seeing the
whole get safely ashore. We then rowed round to
our old landing-place, and having secured the boat,
we looked around us for our friends. To our great
disappointment, not one was visible; but we were not
kept long in suspense. A shout of joy announced
that the youngsters had discovered us. My wife ran
to welcome me back, as if after an absence of years,
and as soon as the first transports of joy were past,
we sat down to recount our adventures. My dear
wife was delighted to find how valuable a counsellor
Fritz had proved to me, and testified much satisfac-
tion at seeing herself surrounded by so useful a herd
as we had brought ashore.

T now obscrved that Jack carried round his waist
a belt of yellow skin, into which he had thrust two
pistols. ‘“ Where,” said I, “have you got this
sinuggler’s costume?” “It is my own manufacture,”’
said he, with an air of satisfaction, ‘and look also at
the dogs.” I now observed for the first time that
each of the dogs was provided with a collar of similar
materials, stuck full of large nails, which projected
outward, and supplied a formidable defence to their
throats. “It is & marvel,” said I, “if you have
been able both to devise and execute this.” “Indeed,
father,” replied he, “it is my own work, with some
help from mamma in the sewing of them.” The



62 FLOATING THE HERD.

truth now came out, that the skin of Fritz’s jackall
had supplied the leather, at which he was by no
means pleased; but on his showing some symptoms
of anger, I reminded him that he must now learn to
act like a man, whereas his brothers were but chil-
dren. This had the desired effect; and as he dis-
covered, on getting near the tent, that the body of the
jackall was already becoming offensive, he was glad
to lend a hand to drag it down to the sea.

We had as yet perceived no indications of supper.
I therefore told Fritz to go and bring the Westphalia
ham, which had supplied our breakfast. My wife
was no less surprised than gratified at the sight. “J
am not altogether unprepared, however,” said she,
producing at the same time a basket containing about
a dozen turtle eggs, ‘‘ but I must reserve the narra-
tive of our shore adventures,’”’ said she, “ till supper
is over.’ While, therefore, she employed herself in
preparing a dish of ham and turtle eggs, Fritz and |
proceeded to unload our boat, having first succeeded,
though not without some difficulty, in catching the ass,
which our lazy Ernest was glad to see was to be the
chief bearer of our burdens in future.

When we returned, my wife had spread a table-
cloth on the top of a cask, and there she had disposed
a dish of ham in the centre, flanked by a tempting
omelet, which the turtle eggs had supplied, and on
the other side a dish of toasted cheese. We now
produced the knives, forks, plates, and spoons, as

well as the captain’s silver service, which we had



THE SECOND JOURNEY OF DISCOVERY. 63

brought from the wreck, and our supper table pre-
sented an appearance rarely seen on a desert island.
We were soon surrounded by the two dogs, the fowls,
and the pigeons, who seemed to demand a share of
the good things. The sheep and goats also had
gathered near, so that we already felt as if we were
the sovereigns of our little kingdom. As for the
dueks and geese, they had established their quarters
in a marsh on the river’s brink, and seemed too well
content with the abundant supplies it afforded, to
think of leaving it.

Our supper proved most acceptable; and when it
was about done, I despatched I'ritz to the boat for a
bottle of Canary wine, which I had brought out. of
the captain’s cabin, and invited my wife to narrate
her adventures during my absence.

CHAPTER VII.
THE SECOND JOURNEY OF DISCOVERY.

“Tite morning you left,” said my good wife, begin-
ning her narrative, “I was chiefly taken up with
watching your progress, and the signals which as-
sured me of your safety. But this morning, having
satisfied myself that we had nothing to fear, I began
to look about me to better purpose. I must look
out, said I to myself, some more shady and shel-
tered spot for our tent. Where we are, we cannot



64 THE SECOND JOURNEY OF DISCOVERY.

go out without being exposed to the burning rays of
the sun, which greatly incommode us. We set out
accordingly on a journey of discovery; the children
and the two dogs marching with me, and fording the
river where we had seen you cross before. Ernest
was the first to get over, and Jack followed, while I
took little Francis on my back, and we were soon all
on the other side. I filled a large flask, which I had
brought with me, with water, the boys were provided
with our game-bags, with a supply of provisions, and
Ernest and Jack each carried a gun in ease of anv
sudden danger. I now saw the advantage of your
having so early accustomed the boys to the use of
fire-arms, and really felt my two dear boys, though
only twelve and ten years of age, to be protectors as
well as companions.

“T so longed for the enjoyment of the shade of
trees after being thus scorched by the sun, that I
directed our course towards a wood we had in view.
The long grass and reeds, however, which were
taller than the children’s heads, rendered progress
extremely difficult and harassing. All at once we
were startled by a loud whirring noise, apparently
at our very feet, and at the same instant a bird of
large size rose from out the grass and flew away,
before the boys could recover presence of mind enough
to present their guns. As soon as my first fright
was over, I could not avoid laughing at the mortified
look of both the boys. ‘You must have your guns
ready,’ said I, ‘for you see the birds have not man-



THE SECOND JOURNEY OF DISCOVERY. 65

ners enough here to wait till you shoot them.’ ‘I
am sure it was an eagle,’ said Francis, ‘it was so
large.’ Ernest ridiculed the idea, and pronounced it
to be a bustard. They were getting into hot discus-
sion on the subject, when I observed to them, that if
the bird had waited long enough for them to examine
it, they would have had time to shoot it too. ‘ Let
him only give us the same chance again,’ said Ernest,
scornfully, ‘and we will have leisure enough after I
have shot him, to determine what he is.’ He had
scarcely finished his boastful speech, when, whirr!
went another precisely like the first, almost past his
nose. The boys were so completely taken by sur-
prise, that they did not offer to present their guns,
while I said to them jocosely, ‘Such a famous pair of
sportsmen as we have! we need not fear want so long
as we have you to supply us with game.’ Ernest
was so mortified, that he looked as if ready to ery:
but Jack good-humouredly took off his hat, and
making a very formal bow, said, ‘Pray, Me. Bird,
only have the goodness to pay us another visit; and
see if we do not improve our better acquaintance!’
On making a few steps in advance, we found the nest
they had left. It was formed of dried grass, with
little appearance of skill. Fragments of broken
shells in it showed that the young had been recently
hatched, and we had little doubt that the covey had
only scattered into the neighbouring grass; but our
own progress was too slow to render it probable that
we should be able to catch them.



66 THE SECOND JOURNEY OF DISCOVERY.

“We soon reached the wood we had in view, where
the boys found a new source of interest in watching
the strange birds, with gorgeous and extremely
varied plumage, that flitted about the higher branches
apparently perfectly heedless of us. The wood, how-
ever, was altogether different from what I had con-
ceived. It was rather a group of ten or twelve trees,
the trunks of which seemed to be sustained in their
position by arched roots of the trees. Jack climbed
up one of these singular stems to measure the main
trunk with a string, and found that it was above
thirty feet in circumference. Between the roots it
must have been more than forty feet, and I found
that it measured thirty-two paces round the verge of
the roots. ‘The foliage is abundant, and the branches
thick, so that it furnished a most agreeable shade,
while underneath, the whole area which it enclosed
was carpeted with a short tender plant, growing
very thick, and forming a most soft and pleasant
sward. Altogether it seemed to me one of the most
charming retreats I had ever seen, and I resolved to
go no further, but to enjoy its shelter till it should
be time to return. A small stream was at hand to
supply’a refreshing draught, and here we opened our
provision bags and made our noon-day meal. The
dogs, which had been wandering for some time, now
joined us, but to my surprise they lay down without
looking for food, and were soon asleep. For my
own part, I was so enamoured of the spoi, that it
seemed to me if we could only establish our lodging



THE SECOND JOURNEY OF DISCOVERY, 67

supported on the arching pillars of these trees, we
would be beyond the reach of danger, and in as de-
lightful a spot as heart could desire.

“On our return we chose a path which soon led us
to the sea-shore. Here we found spars, casks, chests,
and other articles which had floated from the wreck;
but they were all too large for us to think of bringing
them home. We contented ourselves, therefore, with
dragging and rolling as many as we could beyond
the reach of high water. While doing so, I observed
the dogs hunting for a kind of crab, which they ap-
peared to eat with great relish. This accounted for
their former conduct, and gave me no little satisfac-
tion, as it removed all dread of their becoming a bur-
den on us in ease of any failing in our provisions.
When we resumed our walk homeward, I observed
Bill turn up something in the sand, which he
devoured with avidity. Ernest, who was nearest,
immediately pronounced them to be turtles’ eggs.
ran immediately, followed by the children, and col-
lected about two dozen of them. The rest we left to
Bill as a reward for his sagacity.

“While we were carefully depositing this unex-
pected prize in our provision bags, I chanced to look
towards the sea, and was astonished to desery a sail.
I knew not what to think at first, but both Ernest and
Jack were sure it must be you, and I soon became
convinced that they were right. We lost no further
time, but hastened to the river side. We crossed it
with greater confidence than formerly, leaping from

(80) 5



63 BRIDGE-BUILDING,

stone to stone without needing to wade; and we
arrived, as you know, in time to welcome you on
your safe return.”

Such was my wife’s narrative of the day’s adven-
tures. I now began to rally her, somewhat sarcas-
tically, on the idea of establishing our quarters in
this favourite tree. “Would you have us roost,”
said I, “like fowls among the branches? And pray
how do you propose that we should get up to our
perch?” I soon found, however, that my dear wife
was not inclined to have her ideas received in any
such manner, and I therefore assumed a serious man-
ner, and desired her to explain her plan. While we
had been listening to her, however, the shades of
evening had been stealing on us unperceived; and
fatigued as we all were with the labours of the day,
we knelt together in prayer, and then retired once
more to rest.

CHAPTER VIII.

BRIDGE-BUILDING.

“Listen to me!” said I to my wife next morning;
“does it not seem as if Providence had conducted us
to the place where we now are? We are closed in
on all sides by the river, the rocks, and the sea, while
our vicinity to the wreck will enable us still further
to enrich ourselves with its stores. Let us, there-



iDGE-BUILDING,. 69



fore, have patience, and be content where we are for
il I have bro ugh from the ship
all that can possibly be of use to us.”

“What you say may be all very well,” replied
my wife, “but E must first tell you that the “heat



some time at least,

here is altogether intolerable; while, as to the safety
which you prize se much, did it save us from the
jJackalls ? or will it be any more effective in keeping
away lions or tigers? and as te the treasures in the
wreck, I renounce them with all my heart; for
when you were away for the last two days on tho

sea, I was a prey to the most fearful Ae eres



and dreaded you might never return.” I acknow

ledged there was some foree in the arguments of 1

wife; “but,” said I, “it will perhaps be better that
we make a compromise. Ifwe make our abode beneath
your favourite trees, we must still keep our magazine
and store-house among these rocks; and, indeed, with
the facilities I have for blowing away some portion
of them near the river with gunpowder, this place
may be rendered an impregnable shelter, to which we
can retreat at any emergency. The first thing we
must think of, with a view to our proposed emigra-
tion, is to construct a bridge across the river.” “A
bridge!” exclaimed my wife in undisguised astonish-
ment; “if we are to wait here till you build a bridge,
we may make up our minds to live and die on the
spot. We have crossed the river already, have we
not? And the cow and ass can carry on their backs
all we possess.” ‘And would you propose,” I re-



70 BRIDGE-BUILDING,

plied somewhat hastily, ‘to drown all the sheep and
poultry, to say nothing of dragging through the
water all your cow’s and ass’s burdens! A bridge is
indispensable; and while I am making it, let me beg
of you to employ yourself in preparing some sacks
and baskets in which to carry our little store. It
will not be of mere temporary use, for the streain
is, no doubt, liable to floods, and must at certain
seasons become impassable by any other means.”

My dear wife acknowledged at once the force of
my arguments, and was all the more reconciled to
my plans from the proposal of providing a magazine
for the powder among the rocks, as it had already
been a source of anxiety and fear to her.

As soon as morning prayers were over, we pro-
eeeded to breakfast, and Fritz had the pleasure of
seeing his monkey suck one of the goats as if it had
been its own mother. My wife next proceeded to
milk the cow, which supplied us with an excellent
repast, part of it being boiled along with the hard
ship-biscuit. She also put some of it into a large
flaggon for our refreshment during the day; and I
now proceeded to prepare our boat for another expe-
dition to the wreck, in order to procure wood for
constructing the bridge. So soon as breakfast was
over, I set off, taking Ernest as well as Fritz with
me, that we might accomplish our purpose with the
less delay. We rowed with all our might till we
got into the current, which soon carried us out of the
bay. But we had scarcely arrived off a little island



BRIDGE- BUILDING, 71

which lay to the left, than we perceived a large
quantity of sea-fowl congregated about some object.
I was curious to know what could be the cause. I
steered for the spot, and findmg we were making
very slow progress, I hoisted the sail, in order to
take advantage of a breath of wind which had sprung
up.

Fritz was the first to descry that the whole flock
of birds were perched on the carcass of a huge fish,
which had been cast ashore on the island. We
brought the boat alongside, and securing it to a large
stone, I stepped ashore without disturbing the birds,
so intent were they on their prey. Fritz was
astonished at the huge size of this monster fish, and
repeatedly exclaimed, “ How can so huge a monster
have been brought here?” “TI believe,’ said I to
him, “that you yourself are the cause; for this is
undoubtedly the very fish you fired at yesterday ; and
see, here are the marks of the two balls in its head.”
“ Indeed it is!” said Fritz, not a little proud of his
achievement. “I know I had put two balls in my
gun, and here they are lodged to good purpose in
the horrible head of it.” “It is indeed a hideous
monster,”’ said I; “the sight of these tremendous
jaws, armed with such rows of teeth, even when dead,
makes one shudder. We cannot be too thankful to
Providence for our escape from such a monster. Nor
must I forget that we owe to the courage and skill
of Fritz that the shark is thus laid a dead carcass on
this island.” The birds were so intent on their feast,



72 BRIDGE- BUILDING.

that they scarcely took notice of our approach, nor
could they be dispersed till Ernest drew out the ram-
rod of his gun and struck with it right and left among
them with such vigour that they were compelled re-
luctantly to abandon their prey. We then cut off
some portions of its rough skin, which it had occur-
red to me might prove useful in various ways, and
especially as a substitute for a file or rasp, owing to
its extreme roughness. This, however, was not the
only fruits of our visit to the island ; for I observed,
to my great satisfaction, that a number of planks and
spars were strewed along the shore, which were
admirably adapted for my purpose, and would thus
save me the trouble of going to the wreck. From
these I selected as many as were suitable, and with
the help of my two boys we soon had them afloat.
Our next care was to arrange them and bind them
together into a raft, which we secured to the stern of
the boat, and then hoisting our sail we turned its
prow towards the shore. Thus, through this fortunate
chance we had accomplished in a couple of hours
what I anticipated would have occupied us the whole
day, and involved no slight amount of labour.

We were soon once more in the bay, and made for
our old landing-place. On getting ashore I shouted
loudly to call the attention of those who had remained
on shore, and was soon cheered by their welcome
reply, and we caught sight of them approaching
from the river, each carrying a handkerchief filled
with some new supply, which they opened out before



BRIDGE-PUILDING. 73

us, displaying a store of lobsters enough to furnish
our table for days to come. Little Francis was full
of glee, telling me that it was he who had first dis-
covered them, while Jack recounted his exertions
with the net, and his courage in wading into the
water to get them. I congratulated both on their
zeal and success, and assured them I would have
great satisfaction in eating a dish of their providing.
Jack, as he assured me, had set out with Francis to
look for a proper place for the building of the bridge,
when he suddenly called to his brother to observe
that Fritz’s jackall was covered with lobsters. They
added that they could have sceured many more had
I not called them off just as they were gathering
them. Their supply, however, was already more
than sufficient, and I could not avoid reflecting with
thankfulness that our lot had been cast where the
means of subsistence was attainable with so moderate
exertion.

While my wife was busied with preparations for
cooking this new supply of provisions, I proceeded
with the boys to examine the river, and decide on
the proper site for our bridge. The place which
had already struck little Jack’s fancy was a very
suitable one, but it was at a considerable distance
from the nearest spot where it was possible to land
the timber. Every day’s experience, however, was
rendering us more self-dependent. I called to mind
the simple harness described as in use by the Lap-
landers with their rein-deers. The ass, therefore, I



G4 BRIDGE-BUILDING.

yoked by simply passing the loop of a rope round
its neck; and then carrying it through between its
legs, I secured it to a piece of timber which I wished
to draw ashore. The cow was in like manner har-
nessed by a rope attached to its horns; and we were
soon able, without any great difficulty, to drag the
whole materials of the bridge to its destined site.
It was now necessary to ascertain the breadth of the
river before we could complete our plans. But this
Ernest ingeniously accomplished by tying a stone
to the end of a ball of stout pack-thread, and throw-
ing it across the river. We had thus at once a
measure by which to determine the length of beams
required. The breadth from bank to bank was
eighteen feet; and as it was necessary to allow suffi-
cient additional length to the timbers to make the
whole secure, I chose some beams twenty-four feet
long. But how to get these laid across the river
was now the question; and as we were already
fatigued with the labour we had undergone, I pro-
posed that we should take it into consideration while
we were partaking of the dinner, which my wife now
announced to be ready. We found she had not been
idle in our absence. In addition to a very agreeable
dish she had cooked of the lobsters, she had also
prepared rice and milk, which our appetite prepared
us todo ample justice to. Before beginning this,
however, she called on us to inspect two sacks she
had made for the ass, which, in the absence of large
needles, she had ingeniously contrived to stitch by



BRIDGE-BUILDING. 75

using a sharp nail for an awl. Notwithstanding
her difficulties, she had contrived, by dint of perse-
verance, to make two very passable saddle-bags,
which I failed not to commend as they deserved.
We had no time, however, to spare for gossip, but
despatched our meal in haste, and hurried back to
our work.

After considering various plans for accomplishing
our purpose, I secured the end of one of the long
beams loosely to the trunk of a large tree, and then
attaching a long rope to the opposite extremity, I
threw the loose end, by means of a stone, to the oppo-
site bank of the stream. My next step was to cross
the river, taking a block with me, which I secured
to a tree, and then passing the rope through it, I
returned with the end, and, harnessing both the ass
and cow to it, I drove them rapidly in the opposite
direction. The device completely succeeded. The
beam slowly rose into the air, turning round the trunk
of the tree as a swivel; and, on my checking my
novel pair of draught horses, it dropt easily into its
place. Fritz and Jack were no less delighted than
myself, and testified their joy, somewhat to my alarm,
by leaping on it and crossing the stream on this
narrow bridge.

The chief difficulty was now removed. Three
other beams were laid across by the same process,
and, with the ready help of my sons, arranged at
equal distances at the most convenient part of the
river. Across these we laid the planks, purposely



76 CHANGE OF RESIDENCE.

leaving them unfixed, so as to admit of their removal
if we wished to interrupt the communication. I
found that their weight was sufficient to keep them
in their place; and having seen that all was ready,
I summoned my wife to examine the bridge, which
she had persuaded herself was to be the labour of a
lifetime. She was no less delighted than the chil-
dren, and, indeed, I partook of her excitement, and
we both ran across the bridge and back again, well
pleased to find how difficulties yielded to our perse-
verance. F'atigued with our day’s labours, we were
glad to retire to our tent, where, after offering up
our thanks to God, we were speedily in the enjoy-
ment of well-earned repose.

CHAPTER IX.
CHANGE OF RESIDENCE,

Tne following morning, my first thought was to
warn the children of the necessity of caution and
prudence in the journey we were now proposing—
urging them not to wander from our side. For my
own part, I could not avoid some feelings of regret
at the prospect of leaving an abode which, though
we had occupied it for so short a time, had been so
safe a shelter to us in our necessities. With the
help of the boys, the flock was soon together. [I
secured a pair of bags firmly to the back of the ass



aw
é

CHANGE OF RESIDENCE.

and cow, and packed in them as much of our heavy
baggage as we could contrive to make them carry—
kitchen utensils, tools, provisions, hammocks, and
blankets, were all laid across the backs of these use-
ful animals. Having despatched a hasty breakfast,
we were about to set out; but my wife remonstrated
against leaving the fowls, even for a single night,
and also told me that some means of disposing of
little Francis must be found, as the child was in-
capable of a long walk. I accommodated the little
fellow behind the hammocks, on the ass’s back;
while the other boys set off in pursuit of the poultry
and pigeons, from whence they returned without
accomplishing anything else than putting themselves
in ill-humour. Their mother laughed at them for
their thoughtless folly, and sprinkling a few grains
and crumbs of bread, she soon got the whole poultry
and pigeons around her; and, decoying them by the
same means into the tent, I closed it from the out-
side, and the whole, with wings and feet tied, were
soon safe in two hampers on either side of the .
donkey.

All our stores which we could not carry with us
were now collected into the tent; and having secured
it as carefully as we could, and arranged all the
larger casks and chests, both full and empty, around
it, we took our departure. Each of us carried a
provision bag and a gun. Fritz and his mother
marched at the head. The cow and the ass, with its
rider, followed them. The goats, under the conduct



78 CHANGE OF RESIDENCE.

of Jack, formed the third detachment, the ape sitting
perched on his shoulders, and grinning behind at us,
to our great amusement. Ernest followed with the
sheep, and I came last of all as the rear-guard; the
dogs occupying no particular place in our cavalcade,
but running now before and now behind, as if seeing
that all was right. The caravan slowly advanced
with a most patriarchal aspect; and the idea of a
nomade tribe seemed to have occurred to both Fritz
and Ernest at the same time as myself. ‘“ We are
now moving,’ I said, “as our Eastern fathers were
wont to travel from place to place. The Tartars,
Arabs, and other wandering nations, are wont to this
day to follow such a wandering life; but they have
their camels and horses, while we must be content
with our poor ass and cow. For my part, I hope
this migration will be our last.” My wife replied
that our new destination, under the shade of her
favourite trees, would amply repay all the toils of the
journey. The sow had proved so restive and un-
manageable, that, after one or two ineffectual attempts,
we had given up the idea of bringing her off. But
we were not long gone when she set off voluntarily
in the same direction—testifying, however, by her
short grunts, the extreme dissatisfaction with which
she regarded our whole procedure. New difficulties
beset us as soon as the bridge was crossed, for the
rich long grass tempted the animals to stray, and all
our orderly cavalcade was soon in total confusion.
The dogs were now of the greatest use; and when



CHANGE OF RESIDENCE. 79

we were once more in some order, I directed tho
leader to take the way along the coast, so as to avoid
the repetition of this disaster.

We had scarcely got fairly in motion again when
our dogs darted once more among the long grass,
and presently a fierce barking and howling got up,
as if they were engaged in combat with some fierce
assailant. Fritz immediately presented his gun
and hastened to the spot, followed by Jack, while
Ernest, with characteristic caution, retreated to his
mother’s side. Dreading the attack of some danger-
ous wild beast, I followed them immediately, calling
loudly to them to take care. My exhortations,
however, were fruitless. They pushed on boldly to
the scene of combat, and presently I heard Jack
shouting, ‘‘ Papa! papa! come quickly! a huge
porcupine!” Relieved of my greatest apprehensions
by this announcement, I soon reached the spot, and,
as they had said, the dogs were busy assailing a por-
cupine, which, whenever they approached it, elevated
its quills so suddenly, that the blood already flowed
from several wounds in their heads, and abundantly
accounted for their fierce howling. Jack, however,
had no idea of being an idle on-looker in this unequal
combat. Drawing a pistol from his belt, he presented
it at the porcupine with so well-directed an aim, that
his shot went through the head, leaving it dead on
the spot. Jack was not a little proud of this achieve-
ment, while Fritz, by no means satisfied to be thus
outdone by his little brother, commented with covert



50 CHANGE OF RESIDENCE,

jealousy on the imprudence and rashness of his con-
duct, and asked with some acerbity if he did not
sce that he might have shot one of the dogs, or, in-
deed, his father or himself. Jack was by no means
inclined to make any such acknowledgments, and
words were running high between them, when I in-
terfered, and rebuked the spirit which Fritz was
giving way to, showing that, though Jack was per-
haps a little imprudent, he had exerted himself
courageously for the common good, and urging on
both to cultivate generous and brotherly feelings
towards each other. Even when dead, we found it
no easy matter to handle the poreupine, but, with the
help of some bundles of soft grass with which I
enveloped it, we got it removed, and placed in one of
the donkey’s panniers.

We resumed our march without further aceident,
Fritz going on before us with his gun, ready to have
the first shot should any new assailant appear. At
length we arrived within sight of what we already
styled The Land of Promise. The gigantic trees
exceeded my highest expectations. One and all
united in exclamations of wonder and delight, while
T congratulated my wife on her discovery and judi-
cious selection of this charming spot for our destined
abode. “Tf we can only contrive to fix our tent,”
said I to my wife, “up among these branches, as
you propose, we shall have little cause to dread the
attack of any wild beast.”

We now set about unloading our beasts, and let



CHANGE OF RESIDENCE, 81

them graze, only taking the precaution to shackle
their fore-leg's, so as to prevent them wanderhig far,
with the exception of the sow, which continued to
take its own way. The pigeons and poultry were
also restored to liberty, and left to choose their own
retreat. While my wife and I were discussing the
needful arrangements for our future habitation, we
were suddenly started by the report of a gun, and
immediately afterwards we heard the shout of Fritz,
who speedily reappeared with a large beautiful tiger-
cat which he had shot. “ Brave! my brave sports-
man,” said I, welcoming him on his return, “ you
have rendered good service to our pigeons and
poultry; the foe you have just slain would have
made an end of them ina single night. Wage an
exterminating war with all such enemies, or we shall
not long have a chicken ieft.’”? A conversation now
followed between Ernest, Fritz, and myself, as to the
exact nature of this animal. I explained to them
that I did not conceive it to be that which goes by
the name of the tiger-cat at the Cape of Good Hope,
but rather the margay, a fierce animal, found in
various parts of South America, and known as a
deadly enemy to all the smaller beasts and birds ot
the forest. Fritz expressed his desire to preserve
the skin, begging that none of his brothers would
meddle with it as they had done with that of the
jackall, and appealing at the same time to me to
advise what would be the best purpose for him to
apply it to. I recommended him to lose no time in



82 CUANGE OF RESIDENCE.

skinning it, and suggested that he would do well to
make for himself such another belt as that of his
brother Jack, while the remainder of the skin might
be employed in making cases for the knives, forks,
spoons, and other kitchen utensils, which were at
present liable to be injured or lost. Jack was, in
like manner, bent upon having his poreupine skinned,
to which we were all the more willing, that the flesh
of that animal is considered a delicacy, and was
therefore applicable to our present wants. I got no
peace from the two boys till I had directed them as
to the best means of taking the skins off their prizes,
while Ernest stocd by, watching our operations, with
his hands in his pockets, sagely discussing the habits
of the animals, and the nature of the trees under
which we were sheltered. The latter he pronounced
to be very large hazel trees. In this, however, I
persuaded him that he was mistaken, explaining my
reasons for believing that the tree was the moun-
tain mangrove.

Francis had meanwhile been industriously em-
ployed gathering dry sticks for a fire. We next
went to the bed of a neighbouring little stream, and
selected stones with which to construct a fireplace;
and while my wife was busy preparing our supper,
I employed myself manufacturing packing-needles
for her by means of the porcupine’s quills. These
I readily perforated with a nail, which I heated in
the fire till the point was red hot, and then took hold
of the other end with a wet cloth. By this means a



ESTABLISHMENT UNDER THE GREAT TREE. 83

set of needles, of various sizes, were made in a very
7 ’
t

short time, to my wife’s great satisfaction. I recom-
mended her, however, to be sparing in the use of
our supply of twine and thread, especially as I had
already thought of constructing a rope ladder with
which to reach the lower branches of the trees. These,
however, were fully thirty feet from the ground, and
both I and the boys exerted all our strength in vain
in the attempt to throw a stone witha string attached.
to it over one of the boughs. We desisted, therefore,
and proceeded to partake of the poreupine soup, which
was excellent. Its fesh also furnished a very palat-
able dish, though my wife could not be persuaded
to taste it, but made her supper of ham and cheese.
As for the dogs, they made a no less hearty meal of
the margay, the skin of which I assisted Fritz in
distending in the bed of the neighbouring rivulet,
and securing it by means of large stones.

CHAPTER X.

ESTABLISHMENT UNDER THE GREAT TREE,

Wueny we had finished our repast, I observed to my

wife that I saw we must make up our minds to rest

under the trees for this night. I therefore desired

her to busy herself preparing harness for the ass and

cow, while I suspended our hammocks to the arched

roots of the trees, and covered them with the sail-cloth
(80) 6



84 ESTABLISMMENT UNDER THE GREAT TREE.

so as to furnish us with a shelter from wind and dew.
I then hastened with the boys to the shore in search
of pieces of wood necessary for carrying out my
plans. While I was busily examining many pieces
of the wreck which lay strewed about, Ernest directed
my attention to a quantity of bamboos, half-buried in
the sand, which, when cleaned and stripped of their
leaves, proved admirably adapted for the steps of my
ladder. These I cut with my hatchet into pieces of
four or five feet long, and then the boys bound them
into bundles for carrying home. I secured some of
the slender stalks with which to make arrows, for a
plan I had already conceived, and we then proceeded
towards a thicket where I hoped to obtain some
flexible boughs.

We approached with our wonted caution, in case
of disturbing any reptiles or wild beasts, allowing
Bill to precede us. But we had scarcely reached
its outskirts when Bill made a sudden spring and
darted among the long underwood, immediately after
which a troop of large flamingoes rose on the wing
with a loud rustling sound. . Fritz, who had been on
the watch, fired immediately, and wounded two of
them. One fell quite dead, but the other was only
slightly wounded in the wing, and, with the help of
Bill, we secured it alive, to Fritz’s great delight.
I was not, however, neglectful of my original object.
I picked out some of the canes which had done
flowering, and cut off the hard ends to point my
arrows, as I knew is practised among the natives of



ESTABLISHMENT UNDER THE GREAT TREE. 85

the Antilles. I also selected two of the largest canes
I could see for the purpose of measuring the height
of our great tree. We now prepared to return. I
gave Ernest the two long canes and the bundle of
bamboos to carry. Fritz bore the dead flamingo,
while I took charge of the living one.

We met with a hearty reception on our return.
The children were delighted with the beautiful addi-
tion we had brought to our poultry, though my wife
looked on it with a less favourable eye, anticipating
that so large a bird would require more food than all
the rest. But I soon dismissed all such apprehen-
sions by assuring her that the stranger bird would
not diminish her stores of grain, but would be well
content if he were allowed to hunt for himself for
worms and reptiles, or the little fish of the brook.
I informed them, moreover, that it was a bird easily
tamed, and on examining and dressing its wound
there appeared to be no doubt that it would speedily
heal. I therefore fastened it by a long cord to a
stake set in the ground, near the bank of the stream,
and in a very short time it appeared to be quite at
its ease among us.

In the meantime the boys had tied the two long
canes together, and set about measuring the height
of our large tree; but they soon returned, laughing
in a very scornful manner, and telling me if I hoped
to measure the tree I must have a very different rod,
for that one barely reached to the top of the arching
roots. I desired them, however, to wait a little



86 ESTABLISHMENT UNDER THE GREAT TREE.

before they gave such ample scope to their mirth,
and recalling to Fritz’s memory some lessons he had
received before he left home on the mode of ascer-
taining the altitudes of mountains, I then showed
him the application of the same method, employing
the canes with lines for the want of better mathe-
matical instruments; and I satisfactorily established
the height to the lower branches to be thirty feet, a
fact which I was desirous of ascertaining, with a
view to the construction of a ladder of the necessary
length. I next desired Fritz to measure how much
stout rope we possessed, as I wanted upwards of
sixty feet to suppiy the requisite amount for my
proposed ladder. The two youngest boys were set
to collect all the small string, while I sat down on
the grass and proceeded to construct arrows of the
canes I had gathered, filling them with wet sand to
give them weight, and pointing thein with the hard -
pieces of cane. Some feathers from the dead fla-
mingo, tied on to the opposite end, completed my
arrows. I then made a bow of one of the strongest
bamboos; but no sooner did the boys see me thus
equipped with a bow ard arrows, than they crowded
round me, shouting joyfully, “A bow! a bow and
arrows! Do let me try it!—and me!—and me
also!’ “ Have a little patience,” said I in reply.
“This is not made for mere amusement.” J then
obtained from my wife a ball of stout pack-thread,
which her never-failing bag supplied. One end of
the thread I secured to my arrow, and having un-



ESTABLISHMENT UNDER TITE GREAT TREE, 87

wound it, I shot off the arrow so that it passed over
one of the stoutest of the lower branches and fell on
the opposite side, carrying the thread with it. It
was easy, by means of the thread, to draw a stout
cord over the same bough; and having thus satisfac-
torily completed the preliminary steps, I now set
about the construction of the ladder. Fortunately
the supply of rope we possessed amply sutficed.
Having cut two portions of the needful length, I
stretched them along the ground about a foot apart.
Fritz meanwhile employed himself in eutting the
canes into pieces of about two feet long, which Ernest
handed to me, and these I attached to the ropes by
means of cords, with a space of about twelve inches
between, and Jack completed their fastening by
driving a stout nail through each, and into the rope,
so as effectually to prevent them from shifting.
Thus, in an incredibly short time, the whole was
completed, and then, tying it to the end of the rope,
I pulled it up, amid the rejoicing shouts of the boys,
who were already contending who should be the first
to ascend to the tree. I picked out Jack as the
nimblest and lightest, and set him up the tree; Fritz
followed him with a hammer and nails, and secured the
ladder more firmly at the top; after which I attached
its lower end to stakes firmly driven into the ground,
and then ascended to complete the work of fastening
it at the top. I carried with mea large pully and
rope, and tastened the former to a stout branch.
Having thus provided the means for drawing the



88 ESTABLISHMENT UNDER THE GREAT TREE.

needful materials aloft with which to build our castle
in the air, I directed the boys to descend. I then
smoothed the bough with my axe, so as to prevent
the fraying of the ropes. A clear moonlight had
enabled me to prolong my labours to a much later
hour than usual, but I was now completely worn
out, and descended with the intention of immediately
retiring to rest. Great was my surprise on reaching
the ground, to find that the boys, whom I had sent
down before me, had not been there. I was totally
at a loss what to imagine, but all anxiety was at
once dispelled by their voices being heard at that
moment singing the evening hymn on one of the
topmost boughs. The young rogues, bent on a frolic,
had slipped up the tree instead of descending, while
I was too busy to observe them. I did not deem it
necessary to make any very serious complaint when
they soon after descended. Supper was already
waiting us, and my wife produced a creditable set of
harness both for the ass and cow, which had been
her work while we were busy with our ladder. Our
supper done, my wife drew the poultry together by
scattering crumbs and grains so as to accustom them
to the spot. The pigeons were already at roost in
the tree, and the beasts secured to the roots among
which our hammocks were suspended. Some objec-
tions were expressed to the discomfort of these beds
after the pleasant cushion of moss on which they had
been sleeping; but I ridiculed such effeminacy, and
it was abundantly obvious by the looks of all that



ENCAMPMENT UNDER THE GREAT TREE. 89

they were already too sleepy to be very difficult ta
satisfy. We had gathered several heaps of faggots
and dried grass so as to form a circle around us.
These we lighted as watch-fires, and soon all were
sound asleep but myself.

CHAPTER XI.

ENCAMPMENT UNDER TIIE GREAT TREE.

My mind was too much preoccupied with anxieties
for the others to permit me to sleep till near dawn.
By degrees, however, I became more composed and
free from apprehension, and at length fell into a
sound sleep, from which I rose refreshed, and we
were soon all busy at work. My wife having milked
the cow and completed her household arrangements,
set off with Ernest, Jack, and Francis, and with the
ass in its new harness, to bring home a supply of
drift-wood from the shore. Fritz and I found enough
to do in the tree. We ascended the ladder once
more, and proceeded to make the needful arrange-
ments for our proposed dwelling. A further exami-
nation of it was of the most satisfactory kind. The
lower branches were nearly horizontal, and at no
great distance apart. We set to work with axe and
saw, and soon cut away the branches that interfered
with our plan. Those above them seemed conve-
niently adapted for suspending our hammocks from,



90 ENCAMPMENT UNDER THE GREAT TREE.

and above these we cleared away the smaller branches
so as to admit of our stretching the sail-cloth across
the whole as an awning and roof.

My wife speedily returned with her first load of
wood, and we set about raising the materials for our
proposed structure to the platform we had already
prepared for them. My wife and the younger boys
acted as the workmen below, and when the beams
which we required proved too weighty for their com-
bined strength, we found our block and tackle of the
utmost use. By this means I soon had several stout
beams across the lower branches, and having secured
them, the elevation of the planking was compara-
tively easy, the fragments of the wreck having sup-
plied abundance of wood, ready cut, for the flooring,
and. sufficiently light to be easily carried by our
assistants below. With these I laid a stout floor
across the beams, strengthening it by double planks
along the edges; and on these I raised a paling or
enclosure, so as to render it perfectly safe. The
next day being Sunday, we were anxious to com-
plete our dwelling so far as to render it habitable
before night, and contented ourselves with a hasty
repast of cold ham and biseuits. With our rope and
pully we next raised our hammocks, blankets, and
the large canvass of our tent, with which we roofed
in the whole, securing it to two sides of the platform,
The back of it rested against the huge trunk of the
tree, so that we were only open in front where we
could look out on the sea, and where the landing-



ENCAMPMENT UNDER THE GREAT TREE. 91

place was fixed. Our dormitory already began to
assume a very comfortable appearance. I now
descended; and some portion of the day being still
before us, I employed myself in manufacturing a
table out of the wood which still remained. This I
fixed between the large roots of the tree where we
had slept the night before, and surrounded it with
planks set up on supports, so as to form very con-
venient seats for our dining-table. Meanwhile the
younger boys busied themselves in gathering the
chips, and heaping together such dried sticks as
were at hand, so as to form watch-fires for the night,
while my wife was preparing the supper which we
all stood in need of.

‘Exhausted with a hard day’s work, I threw my-
self at length on the grass, while my wife proceeded
to dish a very comfortable stew, which she had pre-
pared for us from the flamingo shot the previous day.
Its companion seemed already becoming familiarized
with us, while our little monkey leaped from one to
another, mimicking all our gestures, and furnishing
us with an endless source of amusement. The
poultry, we were also glad to see, were still inclined
to stay by us, and the sow, the only wanderer of the
family, returned this evening and saluted us with
its familiar grunt, so much to the satisfaction of my
wife, that she gave it all the unused milk, which it
was then impossible for her to turn to account in
making cheese or butter, for want of the needful
utensils. These, however I promised—not greatly



92 ENCAMPMENT UNDER THE GREAT TREE.

to her satisfaction—to bring with me on my next
voyage from the ship; for she could hardly hear of
my attempting to visit the wreck without a shudder.

The watch-fires were now lighted. Our two dogs
were secured to the roots of the tree as a defence
against intruders, and we prepared to retire for the
night. The labours of the day had been amply suffi-
cient to make us welcome the hour of rest; but the
novelty of the new dwelling, and the anticipation of
security and comfort which it gave rise to, made
every one eager to ascend. The three boys mounted,
one after the other, the moment the word was given.
Their mother tock it with more deliberation, and
cautiously guarding each step, at length landed for
the first time on the aerie dwelling which had ori-
ginated in her own suggestion.. My own ascent was
the last and most difficult; for, in addition to having
little Francis on my back, I had to fling the lower
end of the rope-ladder loose, in order to admit of its
being drawn up after me, so that it swung about
very unpleasantly, greatly adding to the difficulty
of this novel approach to our new dwelling. I got
up, however, safely at last, and, having drawn the
ladder after me, we all felt a sense of security, which
amply repaid us for the labour we had expended. I
deemed it, however, advisable to lay our guns within
reach; and having thus provided against every
danger, we were soon asleep, and did not awake
again till the sun was shining brightly in at the
opening of our tent.



THE FIRST SABBATH. 93

CHAPTER XII.
THE FIRST SABBATH.

Ix the morning all awoke refreshed and invigorated ;
nor was there the slightest dissatisfaction expressed
at the straightened accommodation of the hammocks,
which had formerly proved a source of abundant
complaint. So soon as they were all assembled, I
reminded them that this was the Lord’s day, ap-
pointed for rest, and for the worship of God, and not
the less to be thus observed and enjoyed by us in
our solitary state, than when surrounded by the wor-
shipping assemblies of a Christian land. My wife
was somewhat inclined to repine at the want of a
special church wherein to worship; but [I had little
difficulty in persuading them that God’s own beauti-
ful sky was as fit a roof for his temple as the noblest
domes that man could build, and that our praises
and prayers would not ascend the less acceptably to
him because we worshipped under the shadow of our
great trees.

We descended by means of our ladder; and, while
I proceeded with the boys to serve the animals with
needful food, my wife prepared our breakfast of
biscuits and warm milk. -This done, my wife and
children seated themselves on the grass, while I
oceupied a slight eminence near them; and, having
sung a part of the one hundred and nineteenth psalm,
with which the boys were all familiar, I repeated the



94 THE FIRST SABBATH,

church service for the day, after which I sought ta
interest and instruct them by means of the following
allegory :—

“There was once, in a very fertile country, a
great king, who had two vast possessions, the one
known as the Kingdom of Light and Reality, because
unceasing activity and constant light prevailed
there; the other, situated on its northern frontiers,
in the regions of ice and snow, and of which the
sovereign alone knew the extent. The latter was
called the Kingdom of Indolence and Night, because
everything in it was inactive and dark.

‘‘The inhabitants of the first kingdom lived in the
enjoyment of uninterrupted felicity. The king held
his court at a magnificent city, styled the Heavenly
fest, where thousands of happy attendants waited to
do his bidding, clothed in garments more beautiful
than the rainbow, and purer than the snow. There
were many degrees among them, but all were united
together in the unchanging bonds of affection and
sincerity, and none could conceive of a higher grati-
fication than to be employed in the service of their
royal master.

“Beyond the frontiers of this great kingdom the
sovercign possessed a desert island, which he resolved
to colonize, in pursuance of a plan by which he pro-
posed to transfer his subjects from the desolate
regions of his northern kingdom to a full share in
the privileges of those of the Kingdom of Light. In
pursuance of this plan, the king equipped a fleet to



TUE FIRST SABBATH, 95

transport a body of colonists from the Kingdom of
Night to the Island of Earthly Abode. Once arrived
there, the benevolent sovereign bestowed upon them
everything which he conceived calculated to ensure
their happiness. Admitted, as they were, to the enjoy-
ment of light, and all the natural beauties which the
newly peopled island possessed, the colonists could not
but contrast with joy the change from their former
dull and gloomy abode. He further gave to each of
them the promise that this island was to be only a
probationary stage, and that all who fulfilled their
duties as colonists, cultivated their new lands, and
acted in implicit obedience to the laws he had
appointed, should be admitted to the full privileges
of citizens of the Heavenly Rest, so soon as their
period of probation was expired. In order the more
effectually to carry out his plans, the king appointed
his son to be the governor of the new colony, who
assembled them all, and set forth to them the obli-
gations they, were required to fulfil, as well as the
penalties in case of neglect and disobedience, includ-
ing for the idle, the contemptuous, and the wicked,
the condemnation to slavery and perpetual banish-
ment, to labour in gloomy subterranean mines. The
prince, moreover, told them that ships would be sent
from time to time to bring oft such as merited trans-
lation to the Kingdom of Light. But he added,
‘None need hope to deceive, for a wondrous mirror,
which I possess, will reveal to me all your most
secret actions.’



96 THE FIRST SABBATH.

“ All declared themselves delighted with the
terms on which they were to be governed and
admitted to higher privileges. But no sooner were
they fairly established, than each did as he pleased,
following only the dictates of his own pleasure,
planting wild fruit which pleased the eye, rather
than the useful seeds given them to sow and reap,
and in all things consulting their ease, sloth, or self-
will. Every one possessed a copy of the great
king’s laws, but few read or heeded them, and some
even scoffed at their obligations as things out of
date, and ridiculed the few who aimed at obedience.
The great king, they said, was far too benevolent and
good to take notice of such variations in their pro-
ceedings. He meant them all to be happy, and
would certainly admit them at last to the Kingdom
of Light. As for the gloomy mines and the dark
slavery spoken of, they plainly declared that they
did not believe such things had any existence; they
were quite inconsistent with the character of their
good king, and had been mentioned merely as an
allegory to frighten weak minds into propriety.
Great numbers, accordingly, neglected altogether to
assemble for the consideration of their king’s laws,
which he had ordered to take place on the first day
of every week; and even of those who did attend,
many paid so little heed to the proceedings, that they
might as well have been away. The king, however,
did not forget or change his purpose. From time to
time the Disease fleet appeared off the coast, and the



THE FIRST SABBATH. 97

frigates Consumption, or Fever, or some other of the
king’s ships, would enter the port, and its captain
forthwith issue a summons for some of the colonists
to appear on board. They were, for the most part,
most unwilling to go, though some whose land had
been carefully cultivated, in obedience to the laws,
departed cheerfully with the king’s messengers.
But whether willing or unwilling, all must needs
go. The admiral, whose name was Death, sailed in
a large ship called the Grave, and to this all the
captains of the frigates transferred their passengers.
Sometimes the admiral Death hung out the white
flag of Hope, which shone like burnished silver in the
sun; but at other times, as the frigates approached
to deliver up their passengers, it was drawn down
and replaced by the black flag, called Despair.
When all was ready, the admiral set seil with his
great ship to the king’s own country. So soon as
the colonists arrived, they all were summoned into
the Judgment Hall of the Royal Palace, where the
great king presided, but generally delegated to the
prince the duties of judge. The attendant natives of
the Kingdom of Light, dressed in their most beau-
tiful robes, waited on them, and the prince produced
a magnificently illuminated copy of the laws of the
colony. By this all were tried. No excuse could
be received; but those who had despised the laws,
and refused to believe in the declarations of their
prince, were banished for ever to the mines; while
those who had venerated his statements, and de-



93 THE FIRST SABBATH,

lighted in obeying the laws, were clothed in magni-
ficent garments, and each presented with a charter,
which conferred on them a perpetual right to all the
privileges of the citizens of the Heavenly Rest. They
were then led to the happy abodes already prepared
for them, and joyfully entered on the full realization
of the rewards promised to them by their king.”
Such was the parable by means of which I sought
at once to amuse and to instruct my family. I then
proceeded to question my sons as to the ideas it had
suggested to them; and having thus drawn them into
various remarks on the ingratitude and folly of those
people who despised the laws of so good a king, and
disbelieved alike his promises and his threats, I then
endeavoured to lead them to apply these to a far
more important theme. “ God,” said I, “‘ has placed
us in this world in a probationary stage of being.
He has given us his Word for our guidance and
direction, and requires of us implicit obedience to his
laws. Yet with heaven in promise, and a Saviour
offered for our acceptance, thousands trifle away their
hopes of eternity in idle and vain pleasures, and act
even as if they believed the book of God to be a lie.
Yet it is just such a promise that it contains. The
parable tells us of a certain king, who returned to
ask of his servants an account of their stewardship;
and while he welcomed the good and faithful servants
to enter as sharers into his joy, he commanded the
unprofitable servant to be cast into outer darkness,
where there is wailing and gnashing of teeth.”



Full Text



The Baldwin Library

B —!
Rm Pia





BRINGING HOME THE MONKEY.





i
|
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|
1

SWISS FAMILY

ABVENTURES OF A SHIPWRECKED FAMILY ON A

DFSOLATE ISLAND

“So they,




enteousness

The glows
giories of the broad belt of the w
All these tey saw.”



TENNYSON, Futacit A vaieee

LONDON:

AND SONS, PATERNOSTER ROW;

EDINBURGH; AND NEW YORK.

ROBINSON;




Tne following Work has already obtained a celebrity,
not in England only, but throughout France and
Germany, which renders it altogether needless to
say anything here in regard to its high merits, or
its peculiar adaptation to interest and instruct the
youthful mind.

A Swiss Pastor, having set out with his wife and
young family, with the intention of settling as colo-
nists in one of the newly-discovered regions of the
Southern Ocean, has expended his small patrimony
in the purchase of cattle, agricultural implements, and
a variety of farming stock well suited for his proposed
destination, After a prosperous voyage has conducted
the ship into southern latitudes, the narrative opens
on the breaking out of a violent storm, which drives
the ill-fated vessel out of its course, and at length
dashes it upon the rocks of an unknown coast, leaving
it a total wreck. The family are. providentially
rescued from their perilous, and apparently hopeless
situation on the abandoned wreck, and effect a land-
vi PREFACE,

ing on the strange shore, where, for eleven years,
they industriously and successfully struggle with the
trials and privations of the castaway, without ever
seeing the long-hoped-for sail on the distant horizon.

The following pages consist of the Journal sup-
posed to be kept by the good Pastor during this
long period. The picture which it exhibits of piety,
resignation, and virtuous contentment, is well cal-
culated to furnish many excellent lessons for the
improvement of the young reader; while the ever
varying incidents and changing events excite the
liveliest interest, and the illustrations of character
and descriptions of natural history combine amuse-
ment with instruction in the most engaging style.
Taken as a whole, the narrative of the Adventures
of the Swiss Family Robinson will be found abun-
dantly to merit the high estimation with which it
has been already received on the Continent, and will
justly claim one of the very foremost places in the
library of the youthful British student.




Ohapter

TS
W.
Hi.
Iv.

Wo
VI.

Vii.
VHI
IX.
Xx.

XI.
XII.
XI
XIV.
XV.
XVI.

XVII.
XVI.
XIX.
XX,
XXi.
XXII.
XXIII.
XXIV.
XXAY.

The Shipwreck, ese ove
The Landing, ... eee ose
A Tour of Discovery, aoe

Return from the Tour of Discovery—Nocturnal Alarm,

Return to the Wreck,

Floating the Herd, ae eo
The Second Journey of Discovery, ...
Bridge-Building,

Change of Residence,

Establishment under the Great Tree,

Encampment under the Great Tree,

The First Sabbath, ae ee
Topography, ... a one
The Sledge, ae oe nae
New Supplies from the Wreck, eee
Cassava Bread, ss oes
The Pinnace, ... see ass)
Gymnastic Exercises, oe aoe
Exploring Excursion, ae on
Useful and Ornamental Arts, ae)
New Discoveries, eet eee
Sago Manufactory, aes eee
The Staircase, ... a ee
The Wild Ass, eee eee

The Rainy Season, ase one

102
109
116
145
133
139
148
156
164
175
182
189
193
vill CONTENTS.

Chapter
XXVI. The Salt Cavern, aos see
XXVII. The Cave Dwelling, ... ooo
XXVIII. New Projects and Discoveries,
XXIX. The Farm Houses, ... see
XXX. Our Winter Dwelling, ove
XXXII. Dissection of the Whale, see

XXXII. The Boa-Constrictor,
XXXIII. Death of the Ass and the Boa,
XXXIV. Excursion to the Great Bay, ...
XXXV. Excursion into a New Courtry,

XXXVI. Expedition of the Boys, exe
XXXVII. The Ostrich Hunt, ore ase
XXXVIII. Ostrich Training, Bos we
XXXIX. Return of the Rainy Season, ...
XL. The Boys’ Adventures, oes

XLI. The Kajack, oes ave
XLII. The Storm, GD eae
XLII. Expedition to the Savannah, ...
XLIV. The Pigeon Courier, a

XLV. Construction of a Redoubt, one

XLVI. General Review of the Culony,
XLVII. The Castaway, cee <
XLVIII. The New Sister. oes ee

XLIX. Conclusion, oes eee



Page
205
214
217
223
229
235
243
249
256
263
274
282
289
296

338
346
854
360
a7a


THE

SWISS FAMILY ROBINSON.

——___—_o—_._

CHAPTER [.

THE SHIPWRECK.

Tue tempest having continued during six long and
terrible days, with no appearance of abatement, it
seemed on the seventh to rage with redoubled fury.
We were driven far to the south-east of our true
course, and no one could form any idea where we
were; while we were dejected and utterly worn out
by the labour of our protracted watch. The masts
were broken, the sails in tatters, and the ship, already
fall of water, threatened every moment to go down.
Commending my soul to God, and no longer dream-
ing of the possibility of escape, I thus addressed my
four sons: ‘‘ My children, God can save us still, if he
please, but if our last hour has come, we must resign
ourselves, without murmuring, to the Divine will.
Let us rejoice in the hope of another life, where we
shall never be separated.”’
10 THE SHIPWRECK.

My poor wife, having dried her tears, assumed an
aspect of composure, and cheered the children who
sought refuge near her. Yet it was with difficulty
that I could master my own feelings, while I sought
to excite them to submissive resignation. Then
uniting together, we prayed to Almighty God, and
the earnestness of my dear children showed me how
suitable and encouraging prayer is, even to those of
the most tender age.

Suddenly we heard above the noise of the waves,
the ery of “Land! land!” At the same instant the
ship received so violent a shock, that we were con-
vineed it had struck, and must immediately go to
pieces. The fearful noise and rending of the timbers
gave new force to our terrors; and the water at the
same time entered the ship with such force, that we
could no longer doubt all hope was over. As I
listened, the captain shouted, “‘ We are sinking, cast
the boats loose!’’? The ery went to my heart like a
dagger, but I still sought to reassure my children,
knowing how unavailing is despair. “ Be of good
cheer,” said I to them, ‘God will help those who
put their trust in him. I go to see if there remains
for us even now no hope of safety.”

I left them and mounted on the deck; where I was
immediately thrown down by a billow, which com-
pletely drenched me. Recovering myself, I gained
a position where I was beyond the reach of the waves.
I saw to my horror all the boats alongside; the whole
crew were already overboard, and the last of the
THE SHIPWRECK. Il

sailors, a8 he sprung after his companions, cut the
rope, and set them at large.

I cried, I implored, and conjured them to take me
and my dear children, but in vain. The noise of the
tempest drowned my voice; and the fury of the waves
was such that it was impossible for the boats to
venture back. All chance of escape seemed over. [
remarked, however, with returning hope, that the
water in the ship did not reach beyond a certain
height, and that the part where my family still were
was so firmly jammed between two rocks, that there
seemed to be no immediate danger of its sinking.
Casting my eyes southward, I perceived land, which,
notwithstanding its savage aspect, became immediately
the object of all my hope and desires.

Returning to my family, I struggled to assume
a calm demeanour. “Take courage, my dear chil-
dren!”’ I exclaimed on entering: “ All is not yet
lost; if the vessel remain fixed, our little cabin is still
beyond the reach of the waves, and if the morrow
were come, and the sea abated, we may yet reach the
land.”

This assurance was received with transports of
joy, and the children passed at once from despair to
the opposite extreme of confident hope. They re-
garded it as certain that we must speedily escape, nor
did I fail to note that the violent osqjllafions of the
vessel had ceased, and that we were no longerthrown
violently against each other by its motions. But my
wife saw through my assumed composure, and divined
12 THE SHIPWRECK.

the grief that was at my heart. I made her under-
stand by signs our entire situation, and I felt my
courage sustained by seeing her Christian resigna-
tion. “Take some refreshment,” said she, “the
mind is strengthened with the body, and perhaps this
weary night will pass away.’’ The tempest con-
tinued with unabated fury, rending away the loose
timbers from the shattered ship, and making the
whole vibrate so that we expected every moment it
would go in pieces. As I listened to the progress of
the resistless waves, I could only comfort myself with
the conviction that it was impossible the boats, whose
departure I had witnessed with such anguish, could
have escaped its fury.

My wife had been able to procure some refresh-
ments before darkness set in, and the children par-
took of them with avidity; after which they retired
to their berths, and were soon in a profound sleep,
notwithstanding the noise of the storm. Fritz, the
eldest, alone watched with us. ‘I have been con-
sidering,” said he, “ how we may yet be saved. If
we could only find some means of keeping my mother
and brothers afloat in the water, you and I are inde-
pendent of such aid, and we could swim with them to
land.’ “ A happy thought,” I replied, ‘let us take
measures for putting it to test with the dawn.””’ We
accordingly sought in our little cabin for such empty
barrels as seemed large enough to keep a person afloat.
These we tied together in pairs, leaving space enough
between them to admit of their being secured round
THE SHIPWRECK. 13

the waists and below the arms of the children. This
done, we collected together the most necessary and
portable articles which we could secure about our
persons, hoping, even if the vessel went to pieces
before morning, that we might thus be able to reach
the shore.

Fritz being by this time worn out with his exer-
tion, threw himself down on his bed, and was soon
asleep like the rest. As for me and my poor wife,
we continued to watch, trembling at every wave
which threatened to engulf us. It was a trying
night for us both. Towards dawn the wind began
to abate, and I hailed with delight the morning
rays breaking upon us as the clouds dispersed. I
called my wife and children to me on the deck,
when the latter for the first time perceived with
astonishment that we were alone. ‘ Where are
the sailors?’ they exclaimed, “‘ why are they not on
the deck with us?’ ‘ My children,’ I replied, “a
greater than man has been our protector, and he
will continue to care for us if we put our trust in
Him. Let us now to work, and try what can be
done for our own safety, for God will not succour
those who will not help themselves.” Fritz imme-
diately exclaimed that the sea seemed even now so
calm, he saw nothing to prevent us all swimming to
land. But his younger brother, Ernest, replied:
“Tt is all very well for you who are strong; but we
cannot swim, and would be drowned.” ‘Trouble
uot your minds with such apprehensions,” said I,
14 THE SHIPWRECK.

“but rather go and see if nothing can be got that
may be useful to ue in our present situation.” At
these words all dispersed in different directions, to
see what could be done. In the meantime I de-
scended to the provision-room, to ascertain if we
had still the means of present subsistence within our
reach. My wife, accompanied with the younger
children, proceeded to examine the live stock, already
severely suffering from hunger and thirst. Fritz
went in search of arms and ammunition. Ernest
laid hold of the carpenter’s tools, while Jack set off
to ransack the captain’s cabin; but the instant the
little fellow opened the door, two huge dogs sprung
out, and leaped on him with such boisterous demon-
strations of joy, that he thought they were about to
devour him. But he speedily recovered his courage,
and on my return from examining the provisions, my
surprise was great to find him mounted on the back
of the largest of them, which approached as if to wel-
come my return.

While smiling at this unexpected reception, the
various explorers returned with their prizes. Fritz
brought with him two fowling-pieces, with balls and
well-filled powder-flasks. Ernest held in his hand
his hat, filled with nails and a hammer, while the
carpenter’s pincers and rule protruded from his
pouch; and little Francis appeared behind him,
with a packet under his arm, from which protruded
fishing-hooks and lines.

“As for me,” said my wife, appearing at the
THE SHIPWRECK. 15

same instant, ‘I am the bearer of good news; sinca
I am able to inform you that we have still safely on
board a cow, an ass, two goats, six sheep, a ram, and
a sow with young—the whole of which I have good
hope may be preserved.” ‘“ All that you bring,”
said I, “is excellent, save Jack’s companions, whose
only use will be to eat up what we can recover.”
‘Not at all,” exclaimed the little fellow, in the
highest spirits, ‘‘ when we get to land, they will help
us to hunt.” “ Yes,” said J, with some despondency ;
“but how are we to reach the land?” ‘“O, easily
enough,” Master Jack replied; “can we not get
ashore in the great tub? I have sailed in it long
‘A happy

”

ago, on grandpapa’s pond at S——
thought! good counsel sometimes proceeds even from
the mouth of a child. Come along, then; let me have
the saw and hammer, with some nails, and we shall
soon see what can be done.” We descended accord-
ingly into the hold, which was already half full of
water, on which, to our great joy, we observed four
great empty casks afloat; which, without very great
difficulty, we succeeded in getting upon the lower
deck. I found them admirably adapted to my pur-
pose, and, with my son’s assistance, had them sawn
in two. This was not accomplished without much
labour, and we were glad, when it was done, to
refresh ourselves with some wine and biscuits which
we had found in the cabin. I contemplated with
much satisfaction my eight life-boats ranged in row,
and was surprised to see that my wife lookcd on
16 THE SHIPWRECK.

them with an air of despondency and fear. “TI shall
never be able,” said she, ‘to venture on the sea in
one of these.” “ Do not be so sure of that, my dear,”
J replied; “my work is not yet finished, and you
will soon see that these tubs are more to be depended
on than this shattered wreck.”

I then took a long and flexible plank, and on this
I arranged my eight tubs, nailing them firmly to it.
I secured two other planks in like manner along the
sides, and by the time my work was finished, I had
produced a very tolerable boat, divided into eight
compartments, and which appeared by no means un-
suited for navigation over a calm sea.

But I discovered, to my dismay, when my work
was done, that, with all our united efforts, we could
not move itaninch. I called for a jack-screw which
I had observed before, and meanwhile I set to work
to saw up a spar into short rollers. One of these
Fritz contrived to slip under an end of our boat,
while I raised it with the screw. I next attached a
long rope to the raft, the other end of which I
secured to the ship, and then, placing other two of
the rollers in front, I soon had the satisfaction of
seeing it in motion, with the aid of the jack, until at
length it was fairly launched into the sea, with such
impetus, that but for the precaution I had adopted, it
must have been carried far beyond our reach. The
next difficulty arose from the too great buoyancy of
our novel craft, which, I feared, must upset if we
attempted to enter it; but a sufticiency of ballast
THE SHIPWRECK. 17

soon removed this objection, and everything seemed
ready for our escape. My children raised a shout
of joy at the sight, and contended who should be the
first to enter. IJ saw well, however, that we could
not venture in it with safety, as the slightest move-
ment would still be liable to upset it. To obviate
this danger more effectually, I proceeded to construct
outriggers, similar to those which various savage
tribes employ for the same end. Having selected
two spars, I secured one across. the stem, and the
other at the stern of my little craft. The ends of
these I thrust into the bung-holes of four empty
casks; and securing them so that they should not
impede our embarkation, I looked upon my novel
boat with a degree of confidence that assured me of
safety. It was now necessary to steer it out from
among the fragments of the wreck which surrounded
it. I got into one of the open casks or tubs, and
succeeded in pushing out so as to clear the wreck,
and secure it alongside, where it could lie both
safely and accessibly, till our other preparations
were completed.

It was late before our plans were thus far carried
out, and we saw that all idea ot escape for that day
must be abandoned; we were, therefore, under the
necessity of passing another night on board the
wreck, though conscious that it. was in danger of
going to pieces before the morning. We now took,
for the first time, a hearty meal—the engrossing
nature of our work having hitherto prevented us
18 THE LANDING.

obtaining more than a slight refreshment of wine
and biscuits. I also advised my wife to exchange
her dress for that of a sailor, as so much better
suited for the exertion she would have to undergo.
This I had some~difficulty in persuading her to
adopt; but after reasoning the point with her, sh.
withdrew, and speedily returned in a dress which
had belonged to one of the young seamen. The
novel costume made her feel very awkward at first,
but the feeling soon wore off; and, as I cheered her
with good hopes for the morrow, she retired to her
hammock, and was soon enjoying a tranquil sleep—
the best preparative for the labours that were be-
fore us.

CHAPTER II.
THE LANDING.

At break of day we were all astir. After com-
mending all to the protection of our heavenly Father,
I thus addressed my children: “I hope that, by
the blessing of God, we shall soon be out of danger.
Meanwhile give the poor animals on board both food
and drink enough to last them for several days,
Perhaps we may yet be able to return and rescue
them. Let all reassemble speedily, and bring with
them such things as are indispensable for our present

> wants.” My plan was to take along with us a barrel
_ (0) .
THE LANDING. 19

of powder, three fowling-pieces, three muskets, three
pairs of pistols, and as large a stock of balls as wa
could carry. I sought out also for my wife, and
each of the children, game-bags, which had belonged
to the officers of the ship. I took next a case of
portable soup, and another of biscuit, an iron pot,
fishing-tackle, a chest of tools, and canvass enough
to make a tent. When all were ready to leave the
wreck, I found they had gathered so many things,

that, though I substituted the weightier ones for the
ballast which had been thrown in the night before,
we were still under the necessity of leaving one-half
behind.

When we were all ready to embark, I implored
the blessing of God on our endeavours. At this
moment we were saluted with the cries of the poultry
on board, which seemed to reproach us for abandoning
them. The thought immediately struck me, that we
might do well to take with us the poultry, including
the geese and ducks, as well as the pigeons; “ for,”
said I to my wife, “if we cannot feed them, they will
feed us.” Six hens were accordingly placed in one
of the tubs, along with a young and an old cock,
and over this a grating was secured to prevent their
escape; but as it was impossible either to take the
whole, or to provide for their safety on board, the
geese and ducks, as well as the pigeons, were set at
liberty, in the hope that they would reach the land.

We waited now only for my wife, who came at
length, having under oe arm a well-filled bag,

(30)
20 THE LANDING.

which she threw into the tub beside little Francis.
We all got into our places. In the first barrel was
my wife—having little Francis in the one next to
her. I took the one at the stern, in the hope of
being able to steer the little craft which was freighted
with all that was most dear to me in the world.
Each one took along with him what clothes were
indispensable; and, provided with oars, and with
floats attached to us in case of being overset, we at
length pushed out from the wreck into the open sea.
The tide was rising as we set off, and lent its aid to
further my weak endeavours. My children gazed
with longing eyes on the land which lay in sight,
and we plied our oars in hope of reaching it, though
for a time in vain. Owing to our unskilful seaman-
ship, the boat turned round instead of advancing ;
until I discovered the right way to steer, and we
began to make some progress from the ship. The
two dogs, which had remained near us since their
release, no sooner saw us quit the vessel, than they
leapt into the sea and swam after us. Turk was an
English dog, and Bill one of Danish breed. Both
were of large size, so that we dared not attempt to
take them into our boat, and I saw little chance of
their being able to swim to land; but they rested
themselves with great sagacity, by leaning their
paws on the outriggers, and so contrived to keep
alongside of us the whole way.

Our navigation, though tedious, was safe; but as
we drew uear the land, it presented no very inviting
THE LANDING, 21

aspect. The bare and arid rocks seemed to promise
nothing but wretchedness and famine. The sea was
calm; and as we drew near the shore, it was strewed
with casks, chests, and broken portions of the wreck.
In the hope of securing a supply for present necessi-
ties, I contrived to lay hold of two floating hogs-
heads, which, with the help of Fritz, were secured
by ropes, and towed along with us without difficulty.

As we drew near the shore, it seemed to lose
somewhat of its sterile look. Fritz distinguished
various trees, some of which he pronounced to be
palms, and Ernest already rejoiced in the prospect
of gathering cocoa-nuts larger and finer than any
seen in Europe. I now regretted having omitted to
bring the captain’s telescope, which lay in his cabin;
but Jack had anticipated my wants, and produced a
sinall one from his pocket, which fully answered the
purpose. With its aid, I observed that the land,
which had appeared a mere savage desert, now pre-
sented a more inviting aspect towards the right. A
strong current was carrying us from this towards
the rocky shore, when I perceived a little bay, to
which the ducks and geese had already made their
way. Into this I succeeded with some difficulty in
steering the boat, and at length found a place where
it floated alongside a low bank.

All who were able leapt at once on shore. Little
Francis alone, baffled by the height of the barrel in
which he was ensconced, had to wait till his mother
came to his aid. The dogs, which had already
22 THE LANDING:

reached the land, now ran to meet us, and testified their
joy by leaping and gamboling about us. The geese
and ducks, and even the pigeons, seemed to welcome
us, while the wild flamingoes responded in unfamiliar
notes to their discordant cries. The inharmonious
concert was, however, by no means unpleasant, as [
already beheld in these a valuable source of provi-
sions on this desert where we were cast.

Our first movement was to kneel together on the
shore, while I returned thanks to Almighty God for
his mercies, and besought the continuance of his
fatherly care. We now commenced to unload our
vessel, and already thought ourselves rich with the
little we had saved. We next sought a convenient
place for erecting our tent, and making a shelter for
the night. This was speedily discovered. One end
of a long spar was inserted in a cleft of the rock,
and the other supported by a pole set in the ground.
Over this the sail was stretched, and the two extre-
mities secured to the ground by means of wooden
pins, with the addition of some of our boxes of pro-
visions above them for greater security. We also
attached hooks to the loose part of the sail in front,
so as to enable us to close the entrance at pleasure.
This done, I sent the children to gather moss and
dried grass, which we spread out in the sun, so as to
provide us with soft beds; and while they were thus
busy, I constructed a fireplace with stones ata little
distance from the tent, on the margin of a stream. I
next gathered together a quantity of dried twigs and
TUR LANDING. 23

branches of trees, and soon had a cheerful blaze; on
this I placed the pot, filled with water, into which
I dropt several cakes of portable soup, and left my
wife, with little Francis for her assistant, to prepare
the dinner. To this Francis saw many insurmount-
able difficulties, in the absence alike of ship-steward
or butcher’s shop; and looked with no little surprise
on his father substituting for these what appeared to
him only bits of glue!

Meanwhile Fritz, who had charge of the muskets,
took one and proceeded along the river-side; while
Ernest preferred the sea-shore, and Jack betook
himself to a ridge of rocks in search of mussels.
Having now leisure to look about me, I returned to
our landing-place to try and secure the two hogs-
heads we had taken in tow. The banks, however,
were too steep for their landing; and while I was
considering how to obviate this difficulty, I was
alarmed by Jack uttering the most terrible cries. I
seized a hatchet and rushed to his aid. I found him
wading in a shallow pool, where a huge lobster had
seized him by the leg, and resisted all his attempts
at release. As I came up to him, the lobster let go
its hold and made off; but, guided by the agitation
of the water, I struck a blow at it with the hatchet,
and soon brought it maimed to shore. Jack, who
had now recovered his confidence, uttered a shout of
joy, and, taking it up with some caution, set off to
earry his prize to his mother. But he had hardly
got it in his hand, when it gave him so violent a
24 THE LANDING.

blow with its tail that he let it fall, and took to ery-
ing once more. I could not help laughing at the
discomfiture of the little fellow; but he soon recovered
his self-possession, and, seizing a stone, put an end
to its struggles.

“* Mamma!” shouted he, “ a lobster! Ernest, a
lobster! Where is Fritz? Take care, Francis, or
it will bite you.” AJ surrounded him immediately
to look at his prize. ‘ Look at the monster,” said
Jack; ‘‘ he seized me by the leg with his terrible
claws, but I soon made him repent of his assault!”
“ You little boaster,” said I, “ you would have fared
but poorly had not I come to your aid.” Ernest
urged the propriety of boiling the lobster forthwith;
but his mother, with more prudent foresight, laid it
aside for the morrow. Meanwhile, I returned to the
hogsheads, and succeeded in finding a low beach, to
which I dragged them, and soon had them safely on

. shore. I congratulated Jack, on my return, on being
the first fortunate discoverer, and promised him the
claws of the lobster for his reward. ‘ O,’’ said
Ernest, “IT also have discovered some excellent pro-
visions; only I did not bring them, as I could not
reach them without wetting my feet.” ‘* And what
were these, my dainty little man?” said I. Ernest
replied, that he had seen oysters on a rock, and had
also seen plenty of salt in the fissures of the rock,
which he thought had perhaps been produced by the
evaporation of the sea water. ‘“ Doubtless, my little
philosopher,” said I, ‘if you are sure they are
THE LANDING. 25

¢

oysters, go now and gather some for our dinner. In
our present situation every one must make himself
useful; and fear not to wet your feet. You see how
the sun has already dried both Jack’s and mine.
Bring also some of the salt about which you reason
so sagely, if you would not dine on our insipid and
tasteless soup.”

Meanwhile, my wife, having tasted the soup, an-
nounced that it was ready. ‘ But,” said she, “we
must wait for Fritz; and if le were here, I see not
how we are to take it. We cannot lift this huge pot
of boiling soup to our mouths!” It was the first time
that any of us had thought of the omission. We
looked confusedly at one another for a second, and
then burst into a hearty laugh. “ If we had only
cocoa-nuts,” said Ernest, ‘“ we could cut them in two,
and. .’ * Doubtless!” I replied; “ but why
not wish for a dozen silver spoons? The one seems
little less accessible than the other.” ‘I have it,”
exclaimed Ernest. ‘“ What is to prevent us using
oyster-shells?’’ “' Perfectly true,” said I; ‘“ that is
what Icallahappy thought. Go, therefore, in search
of the oysters; and let us hear no complaints that
our new spoons are somewhat short in the handle!’’
Jack ran to the place indicated, and was up to his
knees in the water, before Ernest, with characteristic
tardiness, had reached the margin. The oysters
were of very large size. Jack detached them in
haste, and threw them to his brother, who collected
them together in his handkerchief—taking care to


26 THE LANDING.

slip one of the largest into his pocket; and soon both
returned with a good supply.

Almost at the same moment Fritz appeared, look-
ing well satisfied, though returning with his hands
behind his back, and apparently from a fruitless
journey. “Empty handed?” said I; but his brother
slipped behind him, and called out, “ A sucking
pig! a sucking pig! where have you found it? Let
us see it?” Fritz now produced his prize with an
air of satisfaction. He told us that he had been on
the other side of the river, where he had met with
the agouti, as I pronounced his prize to be.- “ You
can have no conception,” said he, “of how different
it is from where we now are; and the beach,
which is low, is strewed with ehests, casks, planks,
and other portions of the wreck. Why not go at
once and get hold of them? and why not return to
the vessel to look after the animals we have left?
We might at least have the cow here; the biscuits
will be so much the better for her milk; and on the
other side of the river there is such excellent pastur-
age. Why should we remain an instant on this
barren spot?” Not so fast,’”’ said I, so soon as
I could get a word in. ‘“ Everything in good time,
my dear Fritz. To-morrow we shall see what can
be done. But have you discovered no traces of our
shipmates?” “Not a trace of man on earth or sea,”’
replied he, ‘but there are hogs on the shore; most
singular hogs, for they have feet like hares.”

While we were discussing what this animal could
THE LANDING. 27

be, Jack had been busily employed trying in vain to
open an oyster with his knife. I laughed at his un-
availing zeal, and placing an oyster on the hot coals,
it opened almost immediately of itself. ‘ Now,”
said I, “‘ who fancies this favourite delicacy ?” for in
truth they were no favourites of mine. After some
hesitation Jack set the example, though swallowing
it more like a doze of medicine than a bon bouche.
The rest followed his example, and aided by a sharp
appetite, pronounced them to be very good eating.
The shells were now employed for their destined use
as spoons, though not without sundry scalded fingers.
We were compeiled, therefore, to wait till the soup
should cool; but meanwhile the dogs, who were not
less hungry than ourselves, had caught sight of
Fritz’s agouti, and were tearing it in pieces before
we observed. The children shouted and screamed,
while Fritz, excited beyond all reasonable control,
seized his gun, and would have killed the poor
animals had I not withheld him, and persuaded him
of the danger and sin of giving way to such un-
governable passion.

The sun was low on the horizon before we had
finished our simple repast. Soon after, the fowls
began to gather round us to pick up the crumbs of
biscuit we had let fall. My wife observing this,
produced the bag which we had observed her drop
into the boat alongside of little Francis, and began
scattering handfuls of corn to the poultry. I com-
mended her forethought, but at the same time urged
28 A TOUR OF DISCOVERY.

her to preserve with care those precious grains, and
promised to try and recover from the wreck a store
of damaged biscuit, which would prove equally ac-
ceptable to the fowls. The pigeons now retired to
the holes in the rocks; the cocks and hens went to
roost on the top of our tent, and the ducks and gecse
withdrew to the shelter of some low bushes on the
margin of the river. We were ourselves no less
ready for repose at the close of this eventful day. I
loaded the fire-arms, and laid them within reach ;
and after we had all knelt down together, while I
thanked God for his great mercies in our deliverance,
and committed all to his care, we withdrew to our
tent for the night. Looking out once more to see
that all was quiet, I then closed the entrance of the
tent. Warm as the day had been, the night was
intensely cold, and we were glad to creep together
for the heat; but I had soon the satisfaction of seeing
my dear wife and children all in peaceful sleep,
an example which I speedily followed, and our first
night on shore passed quietly, and without alarm.

CHAPTER III.
A TOUR OF DISCOVERY.

I was awoke at the dawn by the crowing of the
cock, and immediately called my wife to consult on
our future proceedings. We agreed that it was our
4 TOUR OF DISCOVERY. 29

first duty to seek for our shipmates, and to ascertain
the nature of the country, before adopting any general
plan of procedure. My wife at once perceived that
it was impossible for the whole family to proceed on
such a tour. She proposed, therefore, of herself, to
remain behind with Ernest and the younger boys,
while I should take Fritz with me, as the strongest and
most adroit. I begged her, therefore, to prepare our
breakfast without delay, and awakening the children,
demanded of Jack what had become of his lobster.
While he ran to fetch it from a crevice in the rock,
where he had placed it beyond the reach of the dogs,
I told Fritz of our proposed excursion. “ An ex-
cursion! an excursion!” shouted the children. “‘ We
will all go together!” and they clapped their hands,
and jumped about me like young kids. “ It is im-
possible,” I said, “that you should accompany us
to-day. [Fritz and I will be able to cope with any
ordinary danger we may encounter; but it is other-
wise with you. Remain here, therefore, in safety
beside your mother, and we will leave Bill with you
for your defence, while Turk accompanies our ex-
ploring party.”

Jack generously offered all his lobster for the
journey, while Ernest remarked, with more selfish
foresight, “ They will be sure to find abundance of
rich cocoa-nuts before long, which will be a vast deal
better than your paltry lobster.” I directed Fritz to
take his gun, a game-bag, and a hatchet. I placed
also in his belt a pair of pistols, and equipped my-
30 A TOUR OF DISCOVERY.

self in like manner, adding the very necessary ac-
companiments of a stock of biscuits and a flask of
water. Our preparations were scarcely completed,
when my wife summoned us to breakfast. The lob-
ster proved so tough and unpalatable that enough
remained over, which we pocketed for our journey,
without any objection. T*ritz was now impatient to
be off, but Ernest reminded him that I had already
spoken of another duty which we must not neglect.
“ And what is that?” said he, somewhat hastily.
“We have not prayed to God,” replied Ernest seri-
ously. ‘ That is it, my dear bey,” said I, “ we are
too ready to forget God, to whom we owe all the
blessings of life, and whose protecting care we are
now so specially called upon to acknowledge.” Jack,
who had overheard me, started up and began parad-
ing about, crying, “‘ Ding, dong! to prayers! ding,
dong! ding, dong! to prayers! to prayers!”’ I re-
proved the thoughtless boy fur making light of so
serious a subject, and warned him to beware of such
untimely levity. Kneeling down together, I fervently
commended all to the care of our heavenly Father,
praying in an especial manner that he would care for
us in the journey we were about to set out on, and
watch over those who were left behind. My poor wife
did not part from us without tears, and we heard them
calling after us with mingled words of encourage-
ment and apprehension, until the noise of the river,
which we were approaching, drowned their voices.
The banks of the river were so high and steep
A TOUR OF DISCOVERY. 31

that we had to proceed some distance in search of a
ford. When at length we reached the other side, we
had to travel a considerable way through tall rank
grass, which so impeded our progress that we were
glad to return to the water-side, in hopes of getting
along with less difficulty. All at once we heard a
great noise, and saw the long grass agitated in our
rear. I stopped, and observed with satisfaction that
Fritz had already assumed a defensive attitude, and
was pointing his piece where we every moment ex-
pected the appearance of ourenemy. Great was our
joy when we found that it was none other than our
faithful dog Turk, who, having been forgotten in the
grief of parting, had been sent after us. I loaded the
trusty animal with caresses, and congratulated Fritz
on his courage and presence of mind, when a rash
movement might have deprived us of so valuable a
companion.
Pursuing our course, we arrived near the sea-shore,
‘and were filled with admiration at the beauty of the
country. We looked on every side in vain for any
traces of our companions, and examined the sand
with equally little success, in hope of discovering
some traces of their footsteps. ‘I will fire off my
musket from time to time,” said Fritz; ‘it will give
notice of our presence to them if they are within
reach.” ‘ Doubtless,’”’ I replied, “but it may also
attract the notice of savage foes, whom we have little
wish to see.” “But why,’’ said Fritz, “ give our-
selves so much trouble to seek after those who so
32 A TOUR OF DISCOVERY,

eruelly abandoned us?” ‘“ For various reasons, my
dear boy,” I replied. ‘We must not return evil
for evil; besides, it may be that they can assist us,
though now they are more likely to stand in need
of our aid.’”’ Fritz, however, still remonstrated that
we might be making our way back to the ship, and
saving the cattle; but I replied that the lives of
men were of more importance; besides which, the
sea was calin, and the cattle had abundant food for
the present, so that no immediate cause of danger
was apparent.

While thus discoursing together, we pushed along
vigorously tili we arrived at a wood which extended
to the sea. Ilere we sat down and refreshed our-
selves beside a running stream. Birds of rare plum-
age flew about us. Fritz believed that he had dis-
covered something resembling an ape among the
foliage, and the restlessness of Turk confirmed him
in this idea. Fritz ran off to assure himself of the
truth of this, and in doing so he stumbled against a
round body which lay on the ground. This he
picked up and brought to me as a bird’s nest. “ It
is a cocoa-nut,” said I, ‘do you not know that this
nut is enclosed in a thick fibrous covering, covered
with an outer skin. The latter, I perceive, is de-
cayed, which is the reason of the fibrous appearance
which has deceived you. Break it open, and you
will find the nut enclosed.” This was soon accom-
plished, to our great disappointment, for it was de
cayed and altogether uneatable,
A TOUR OF DISCOVERY. 33

“T always understood, father,” said Fritz, “that
cocoa-nuts were full of a pleasant and refreshing
milk.” “You believed rightly,” I replied; “the
nut is pleasant both for food and drink when it hangs
ripe on the tree. If it falls on a good soil, it will
germinate, and the bud soon burst its covering and
grow up to become, in course of time, a large tree,
but if it fall where no suitable soil encourages vege-
’ Fritz con-
tinued his questions as we proceeded on our journey,
and after a time he was so fortunate as to find another
cocoa-nut sufficiently fresh to afford us a pleasant
repast. Our progress was somewhat slow, as we had
frequently to clear a way with our hatchets. At
length we reached the water-side; the wood became
less dense on our right, and we observed that some
of the trees were of a peculiar kind. “‘ See, father,”
said Fritz, ‘‘ how these trees are covered with wens.”
As we approached, I discovered, to my great. satis-
faction, that it was a gourd tree, of which many more
were visible. Fritz was greatly puzzled to conceive
what the singular protuberances could be. “ Try,”
said IJ, “if you can get hold of one of them, and we
will examine it.” ‘Here is one,’ he exclaimed,
“ very like an ordinary gourd, only it is much harder.”
‘Of this,” said I, ‘we shall be able to make plates,
cups, and bottles; this is what is called the gourd
tree.” Fritz inquired if the gourd was fit for eating.
I replied that it was harmless, but not particularly
palatable; the chief use of the tree to savage nations,

tation, it decays, as you have now seen.’
34 A TOUR OF DISCOVERY.

is to make dishes for holding, and even for cooking
their food. The latter idea seemed to puzzle Fritz.
‘Tt is impossible!’ he exclaimed, “the gourd itself
would be burnt by the fire.” I told him that they
were not exposed to the fire; that the Indians could
boil their food in them without their being near the
fire. ‘Truly it passes my comprehension,’’ said-
Fritz, “it seems little short of magic.” “So it is
with men in general,” said I to him, smiling, “ when-
ever they cannot explain anything: without putting
themselves to the trouble of reflecting, they pronounce
a prodigy, a miracle, what is perchance one of the
most ordinary operations of nature. Observe, in the
present instance, when it is proposed to boil a piece
of fish or flesh in the gourd, it is filled with water,
into which red-hot stones are dropped successively,
till the water boils.”

We now set about fashioning our gourds into
dishes. Fritz took his knife to cut the gourd in two,
but he found it much more difficult than he antici-
pated. The hard rind resisted the blade, and on
applying more violent force, it suddenly cut in a
wrong direction, Meanwhile I had taken a string
which I drew tightly round the gourd, and then
striking it with the flat handle of my knife, till an
incision was made, I gradually tightened it till the
nut was separated into two equal parts. This I ex-
plained to Fritz I had learned from books of travels,
which describe it as the method employed by the
natives, who have no such knives as ours. I next
A TOUR OF DISCOVERY. 30

explained how they made bottles, which greatly in-
terested him. “ They tie a band round the young,
soft gourd,” said I, “ sufficiently near the stalk for
the purpose. This checks the growth at the desired
point, while it continues to expand beyond it, and
then vessels can be made to grow with long or short
necks, according to the will of the designer.”

We now resumed our march, leaving our newly-
manufactured dishes to dry in the sun, having first
taken the precaution to fill them with sand to pre-
vent them from shrinking. As we walked aloug,
Fritz tried his hand at converting a part of one of
the calabashes into a spoon, while I essaved to make
another out of a piece of cocoa-nut shell; but it must
be owned that little could be said in praise of either
of our productions. We recalled to mind the manu-
factures of the natives which we had seen in museums
at home, and were compelled to own that the savages
were our masters in such work. Thus conversing,
we walked on together till, after a journey of about
four hours, during which we had looked in vain in
every direction for traces of our former shipmates,
we arrived at a neck of land which stretched far into
the sea, and rese in one part to a considerable height.
This appeared a most suitable point of observation,
and we accordingly proceeded, though not without
some difficulty, to mount to the top. On attaining
the summit, a wide and varied prospect stretched out
before us; but we looked in vain for any traces of

human beings. Nature appeared in all her wild
(30) 3
36 A TOUR OF DISCOVERY.

charms, and though destitute of culture, displayed
a rich profusion unknown to our European climates.
The luxuriant verdure of the shores, and the placid
stillness of the sea, which was here enclosed by a
large bay terminating in another promontory beyond,
would have filled our minds with unmingled xatis-
faction, but for the reflection that the companions we
had been in search of probably now lay engulfed
beneath the sea that looked so calm and gentle.
This did not, however, diminish our sense of the
Divine goodness which had rescued us from a similar
fate, and cast us on a shore which, though apparently
without inhabitants, held out so good a prospect. of
needful supplies for those who had now entered
involuntarily on its possession. We had left home
with the intention of settling as colonists in a remote
and strange land, and I remarked accordingly to
Fritz, we might comfort ourselves with the reflection,
that, while we could have gone no whither without
encountering difficulties, our destined port might
have proved destitute of many advantages which
seemed here within our reach.

We now descended the hill, directing our course
towards a clump of palms, to arrive at which we
were obliged to traverse a jungle covered with reeds
and long grass, which greatly impeded our progress.
We advanced with caution, being apprehensive of
treading on a snake or some other venomous reptile,
such as usually haunt the like localitics. As a fur-
ther precaution, we made Turk go before us to give
A TOUR OF DISCOVERY, 37

timely notice of danger. As we went



one of the largest reeds, as a convenicnt weapon
against any assailant. Soon after I okserved a
glutinous sap exude from the ent end of my staff,
Ww eal T had the



osity to taste, and was soon con-
vinced that the r ne tI held in my han st he a
sugar-eane, IT applicd it to my mouth, and se

on ae the juice, that it was both agreeable and
very refreshing. I did not immediately announce my
discovery to Fritz, preferring that he should make
it for himself; I therefore desived him ta cut one
down for his own defenee, and soon saw him bran-
dishing it about his head, and striking right and left
as he cleared his way through the dense growth of
reeds. The effect of this was as F anticipated; tha
sap soon exuded im considerable abundance, and I



sav him put his hand te his mouth and exelain
aloud, “ l’athor! father! a sugar-eane! Only taste
it. How charmed my mother and brothers will be
at the discovery!’ He was so delighted with this
novel and palatablo discovery, that I was obliged at
leagth to intorfere, under the apprehension that he
would injure himself by his excess; and T took
advantage of the favourable opportunity for urging

upon hin the necessity of mederation and etapa



ance, even in the most rational and innocent enjoy-
ments.

Fritz now gathored a bundle of the best eanes he
vould select, to earry home. We soon arrived at a
thicket of palms, which we entered, and seated cur.
38 A TOUR OF DISCOVERY.

selves to enjoy our repast under its shade. Sudden
a number of large monkeys, frightened by our ap.
pro oach, and by the barking of Turk, dispersed from
the spot, running up the palm trees with such rapi-
dity that we had scarcely observed them before they
were at the top. Ilaving reached this safe elevation,
they proceeded to grin and chatter at us, expressing
their anger at the disturbance by the most diseordant
uotses. I observed immediately that the trees were
coeca-nut palms, and I immediately thought of hav-
ing recourse to the services of the monkeys for a
supply of fruit. Fritz, on the contrary, irritated by
their derisive gestures and noise, had already seized
his gun, and was about to shoot them, when I re-
strained his hand, and urged on him the folly and
crueity of killing a poor animal that could be of no
value as food, and excited no just apprehensions of
danger. ‘“ You will see now,” said I, “how much
more useful and simple is the mode of dealing with
them.’ I accordingly collected some stones, and
began to throw them at the monkeys, and though I
could not nearly reach them on their lofty pereh, they
exhibited every mark of irritation, and, seizing the
cocca-nuts within their reach, they Hacer at them in 4
shower at our heads.

Fritz laughed heartily at the success of my stra-
fagem, and when the shower of cocoa-nuts had ceased,
T gathered as many as I could conveniently carry.
We now sought a convenient spot for enjoying the
repast thus provided, and after sucking some of the
RETURN FROM THE TOUR OF DISCOVERY. 39

mill by means of the holes which we pierced in the
end of the nuts, we broke them open with the hatchet,
and ate, with much satisfaction, of the kernel. An-
other application to the juice of the sugar-cane com-
pleted our repast, and Turk received, with abundant
symptoms of satisfaction, the remainder of the lobster,
which we no longer valued. I now gathered together
such of the cocoa-nuts as had long stalks, and threw
them over my shoulder. Fritz resumed his bundle
of sugar-canes, and we set out on our return to our
new home,

CHAPTER IY.

RETURN FROM THE TOUR OF DISCOVERY—NOCTURNAL
ALARM,

We had not proceeded far on our return when Fritz
began to show symptoms of fatigue. IIe passed the
bundle of canes frequently from one shoulder to the
other, and at length exclaimed, ‘I could not have
believed that a mere bundle of canes would have
proved so burdensome. But I shall be well repaid
by the pleasure they will afford to my mother and
brothers.” I extracted from his bundle a cane for a
staff, and he followed my example. By-and-by I
began to suck the cane, having first made an in-
cision at the nearest joint, so as to admit of a free
eurrent of air through the pores. Fritz, observing
40 RETURN FROM THE

my enjoyment of the refreshing luxury, attempted to
follow my example, butin vain. ‘ What can be the
reason,” he at length exclaimed, with* some im-
patience, ‘ that, though my cane secms to be full of
juice, I cannot get a drop out of it?” I replied,
laughing, that it was because he neglected to employ
the right means. “Ah!” said he, “TI remember
the reason now. I must make an incision above the
nearest knot, and then, when by suction I have
exhausted the air in my mouth, it will rush by the
opening through the cane, and carry the juice along
with it into the vacuum. But T fear, if we proeced
at this rate, owr canes will contain little sugar by the
time we get home.”’ ‘Tt has been my idea for some
time,” I replied, ‘not indeed from apprehension of
our own forgetfulness of those who await us, but from
the certainty that the juice of the newly-cut sugar-
cane, when exposed to such heat as we are now ex-
periencing, is certain to turn sour in a very short
time.”

“Well,” said Fritz, “if the sugar is spoiled, I
shall have the satisfaction of carrying home a good
supply of the cocoa-milk, with which I have filled
this tin flask.” “T fear, my dear boy,” I replied,
“that your labour in that respect will prove equally
vain. The cocoa-nut milk is equally liable to be
thus affected; and, exposed as it is in your tin-flask
to the direct rays of the sun, I would not greatly
wonder if it is already vinegar.” ‘“ How provoking!”
he exclaimed, “(I must examine it immediately.”

se
TOUR OF DISCOVERY, Al

But he had scarcely loosened the cork of his flask,
with a view of tasting its contents, when it flew out
with a loud report, the milk following it like new-
drawn champagne. ‘ My prediction, I see, is in the
way of being verified shortly,” I remarked; “ but
take care, my boy, what use you make of that potent
beverage. It will go to your head.” “QO! father,
only taste it: it is delightful. So far from being
vinegar, it is like fine new wine. The treat I had
intended for them will be even greater than I anti-
cipated.” “ Be not too sanguine,” I replied; “ this
is the first fermentation. The same phenomenon
occurs in the juice of the sugar-cane, the milk of
the cocoa-nut, and even in honey mixed with water.
In its present state it is indeed a sort of wine, but it
will not Iast. A second, though slower, fermentation
will make vinegar of it before you can reach home.
But let us enjoy it while it lasts, though with mode-
ration, if we would wish to escape the effects which
all fermented liquors produce.”

Refreshed by this unexpected treat, we proceeded
with renewed vigour, and soon arrived at the place
where we had left our calabashes to dry in the sun.
We found them already quite firm and hard, and put
them in our bags with much satisfaction. We had
searcely reached the skirts of the wood where we
had dined, when Turk darted fiercely in among a
troop of monkeys whom we had surprised at their
gambols on the grounds; and before we made up to
him, he had already killed a female ape, and was
43 RETURN FROM THE

devouring her. A young ape which had ‘clung to its
mother, and probably retarded her flight, watched
from a little distance with impotent rage the cruel
death of its mother. Fritz was in such haste to stop
the dog, that he flung away hat, bottle, canes, and
everything, but in vain. Before he could come up
to it, Turk was already devouring his prey. Ap-
proaching more leisurely, I found, on my arrival, a
very different scene. So soon as the little monkey
saw Fritz approach, it sprang nimbly on his back,
and held so firmly by his hair, that neither his cries
nor most violent efforts could disengage it. I could
not help laughing at the ludicrous scene; and as I
‘aw there was no danger, the poor little ape being in
even greater terror than Fritz, the cries and grimaccs
of the two were sufficiently diverting. I in vain tried
to disengage the little monkey from his hair. It
elung to hin, as if resolved to make him its protector.
“There is no choice,” I said, langhing; ‘it is ob-
vious that the little orphan, having lost its mother,
has chosen you as its adopted father.” I caressed it,
and offered it something to eat, and at length succeeded
in gently disengaging it. I took the poor little thing in
my arms like an infant, and could not help regarding
it with pity. It was obviously incapable of providing
its own food, and if abandoned by us must inevitably
perish. Unwilling as I was to add another to our
number under present circumstances, I yiclded to
Fritz’s importunities, and agreed that it should be
taken home on condition that he should take the
TOUR OF DISCOVERY. 3

entire charge of it. This he cheerfully consented
fo. *

Turk was meantime feasting on his strange prey.
Fritz would have driven him from it; but while such
a proceeding could have answered no good purpose,
I already saw that so large and voracious a dog must
be allowed the full license of a hunter, if we would
not have him become a burden, and even a terror to
us. We did not wait to see him finish his revolting
feast. The young monkey returned to its place on
Fritz’s shoulder, who no longer objected to the burden,
while I took his bundle of canes. Turk rejoined us
after a time; and was received at first with many
reproaches and menaces by Fritz, who had already
forgot how very recently he had been on the eve of
committing a similar act, with no such justification
as the poor dog had. The sight of him, however,
was even more disquieting to the monkey. It re-
treated to the opposite shoulder, and at length took
shelter in his bosom, cowering in with all the action
ofa frightened child. At this momenta lucky thought
struck Fritz. Passing a cord round the neck of
Turk, he placed the ape on his back, and passing it
round its waist, he said, “Since you have killed the
mother, it is only just that you should bear the child.”
The dog was at first inclined to be rebellious; but
we succeeded at last, by alternate scolding and caress-
ing, in reconciling him to his burden. As an addi-
tional precaution, however, Fritz retained hold of the
string, so as to prevent Turk wandering out of siglit.
44 RETURN FROM THE

This expedient greatly amused me: “ We will
return like a couple of showmen,” said I; “ your
brothers will be in eestacies at the sight.” “ Yes,
indeed,” replied Fritz; ‘and Jack will find in our
little cavalier a model for grimace, and an excuse
for his impertinent tricks.” ‘‘ Do youthen, my son,”
said I, addressing him with some gravity, “take
your mother and myself as your models, and display
greater forbearance towards your brothers. Such
bitter remarks on the levity and sportiveness of your
younger brothers are not such as I like to hear from
you.” Fritz promptly acknowledged the impropriety
of his remark, which had been uttered without reflec-
tion; and we resumed the conversation which had so
pleasantly beguiled the way, so that we were on the
river’s bank, and near our new home again before we
were aware. Jill was the first to perceive our ap-
proach, and set up a joyous bark, to which Turk
responded with such vehemence, that the poor little
monkey sprung with terror from his back; and so
soon as the cord was loosed, he sprung on to Fritz’s
shoulder, and would on no account quit it. Turk,
relieved from his restraint, jumped into the river, and
was speedily among the dear circle we had left; so
"that, before we had reached the place where we had
crossed in the morning, the whole family were assem-
bled to welcome us on the other side; and we were
speedily in one another's arms.

The children were impatient to examine what we
had brought back with us, and presently set up a ery
TOUR OF DISCOVERY. 45

of joy. “A monkey! a living moukey !—how did
you get him, Fritz? Whata funny fellow! IPf we
had only something to give him. But what are we
to do with these staves? What sort of things are
these papa carries?” My wife was no less intent on
learning of our adventures and our welfare, so that it
was impossible to reply to their eager questionings.
When their first transports of joy were somewhat
moderated, I told them what we had observed of the
nature of the country, and its great fruitfulness.
“ But,” Tadded, “ we have been entirely unsuccessful
in recovering the slightest traces of our lost com-
panions.” ‘God’s will be done,” said my wife,
earnestly; “let us be thankful for our own great
mercies. This day has seemed an age till your safe
and happy return. Let us relieve you of your bur-
dens, and come and tell us of your adventures.”

Jack accordingly took my gun, Ernest the cocoa-
nuts, Francis the calabashes, and my wife the game-
bags. rita distributed his sugar-canes among them,
and replaced the monkey on Turk’s back, to the
great amusement of the children. He then begged
of Ernest to take his gun; but he thought himself
already sufficiently burdened with the cocoa-nuts,
though ignorant of what they were, and would have
refused had not his mother kindly interfered, and
relieved him of the first load.

“Tf Ernest knew what he was relinquishing,” said
Fritz, “he would not have parted with them so
readily. These are cocoa-nuts you have given to

b
46 RETURN FROM THE

mother.’ ‘ Cocoa-nuts !” exclaimed Ernest in great

delight ; ‘give them to me, mother. I shall carry
them and the gun too.” But his mother told him
one was enough for him, and, though tempted in his
eager desire for the coveted nuts, he was prevented
by shame from asking her to carry the gun. “ But,”
said he, ‘I can fling away these sticks, and then |
shall have a hand disengaged.”’ “I advise you not,”
said Fritz, ‘unless you would repent still more of
your second act. These sticks, as you call them, are
sugar-canes.” ‘ Sugar-canes !”’ exclaimed the whole
in one voice; and little farther progress could be
made, till Fritz had told of his discovery, and shown
cach how to suck the juice of the canes.

Thus conversing, we reached our tent, where we
found an excellent repast awaiting us. On one side
of the fire, fish of several sorts were cooking on a
wooden spit thrust through them, and supported on
two forked sticks; on the other side was a goose
roasting by means of a similar contrivance, while a
range of large oyster-shells supplied the place of «
dripping-pan. A pot suspended over the fire already

2

gave promise, by its odour, of excellent soup; and |
also perceived that one of the packages we had re-
covered from the sea had been opened in my absence,
and proved to contain excellent Dutch cheeses, care-
fully packed in lead. The whole seemed wonder-
fully to exeeed what could have been hoped for. I
congratulated them on their diligence in my absence,
though I could not altogether conceal my sense of
TOUR OF DISCOVERY. a7
my wife’s improvident liberality in having reeoursa
to our small number of poultry, when other provi-
sions were so abundant. ‘Trouble not vour mind,
my dear,” said my wife, “it is not one of our own
geese which vou sce roasting, but a wild bird which
Ernest killed, and which, he assures me, is good for

* exclaimed Ernest, ‘it is a

eating.” ‘Yes, father,’
stupid penguin. I knocked it down with a stick, at
no great distance. I have preserved the head and
feet for you to examine. It has a long beak and
web feet, and exactly resembles the penguins in nv
natural history book.’’ I commended the intelligent
reasoning of the boy, and was proceeding to commu-
nicate some farther information about the bird, when
my wife interrupted me. ‘There is a time for
everything,” said she; ‘besides, do you not see that
the child’s eyes are all the while fixed on the cocoa-
nuts? Gratify the longings by a sight of one of
them, and a taste of its contents.” “ With pleasure,”
I replied; “but you must apply to Fritz to show you
the way, and do not forget, meanwhile, that the poor
monkey has lost his mother’s milk.” “ But he will
eat nothing,” said Jack; ‘I have offered him every-
thing I could think of’ I explained to him that it
was probable the poor little animal had hitherto been
nourished solely by its mother’s milk, and recom-
mended Fritz to try him with the milk of the cocoa-
nut till more suitable food could be found. Jack
would have given the whole supply to the new
favourite, but Ernest had no idea of such self-denial,
48 RETURN FROM THE

and little Francis also protested that he must tasta
the cocoa-nut himself. ‘So must we all,” said his
mother, smiling. ‘ Let us have our supper now,
and the cocoa-nuts will suffice for dessert.”

We seated ourselves in a circle on the grass. My
wife distributed the food in cur newly-manufactured
dishes, and the appearance of comfort which it gave
to our repast greatly exceeded our anticipations.
The children had already broken several of the cocoa-
nuts, and pronounced them to be excellent; nor was
the little monkey forgot. They dipped the corner
of their handkerchiefs in the milk, and then gave it
him to suck, which he seemed to do with relish. He
appeared already at home with them, and there
seemed no reason to doubt that we would be able to
vear the little creature. We discussed the provisions
with a good appetite, and pronounced them excel-
lent. The penguin, indeed, proved a somewhat
tough and unpalatable morsel; but I set the example,
and was soon followed by the whole, in partaking of
the well-cooked, though somewhat strong and fishy-
tasted dish. Tritz now begged leave to treat us all
to a taste of his delicious champagne, to which I
offered no objection, only recommending that he
should set the example i.. tasting it. Great, indecd,
was his mortification on finding that it was already
changed into vinegar. My wife, however, regarded
the transformation with no such feclings of regret.
By her advice it was employed as sauce to the pen-
guin, and greatly improved it, correcting the flavour
TOUR OF DISCOVERY. 49

which had rendered it wnpalatable. It served also
as a pleasant accompaniment to the fish, so that
Fritz was reconciled to see that his exertions had not
proved altogether in vain,

The boys were thoughtlessly proceeding to break
the remainder of the cocoa-nuts, but I stopped them,
and calling for the saw I carefully cut the shells in
two; and, after we had scooped out the rind, each
of them supplied a couple of excellent cups or basins,
so that we were already furnished with a very re-
spectable table equipage, though we had been neces-
sitated only the day before to scald our fingers in
our attempts to get at the soup.

The sun had reached the horizon as we concluded
our repast, and we immediately set about our pre-
parations for the night, mindful of how rapidly
darkness closed in upon us. My wife, with con-
siderate attention, had collected a considerable quan-
tity of dry moss and grass, which was now strewed
in the tent, and made an attractive and comfortable
couch, on which the labours of the day had disposed
all of us to stretch our tired limbs in anticipation of
welcome repose. The poor little monkey accompa-
nied us into the tent, and was soon comfortably
disposed between Fritz and Jack, wrapped in a
plentiful covering of dry hay. The fowls went to
roost, as before, on the top of the tent; and having
seen all arranged, as on the previous night, I closed
the curtain of the tent, and was soon buried in pro-
found sleep.
50 RETURN FROM THE TOUR OF DISCOVERY.

We had not slept long when a disturbance among
the poultry, followed by the violent barking of the
dogs, awoke us all. I jumped up quickly, and
rushed out, followed by my wife and Fritz, each of
whom had seized a gun. By the light of the moon
we perceived our two gallant dogs surrounded by
about a dozen jackalls. Four of them were soon
strangled in the gripe of our faithful defenders; but
the remainder still pressed on them, and threatened
to overpower them, when a well-directed shot from
both Fritz and myself laid two of their assailants
dead, and put the others to flight, with some of their
number wounded.

The dogs, according to their nature, made a meal
on the eareass of one of their fallen foes; but Fritz,
having obtained my leave, singled out the one which
had fallen by his shot, and dragging it, not without
some difficulty, near the tent, placed it under cover,
so as to show it to his brothers in the morning. We
onee more retired to our homely couch, and slept
soundly without further disturbance, till awoke in
the morning by the crowing of the cock, which
summoned us to consult about the prosecdings of
another day.
RETURN TO TIE WRECK. Al

CHAPTER Y.
RETURN TO THE WRECK.

“My dear wife,” said I, “it is not without consider-
able anxiety that I look forward to the work that is
before us. A voyage to the wreck is indispensable,
if our cattle are to be saved, beside the many other
useful articles we were forced to leave behind. On
the other hand, equally indispensable duties seem to
call for my stay on shore, and especially the neces-
sity for erecting a secure and commodious dwelling
to shelter us from cold as well as outward dangers.”
“With patience, order, and perseverance,” said my
wife, cheerfully, ‘all will go well. We must be
content to do one thing at a time. I confess I would
prefer that the return to the wreck could be avoided;
but since it must be so, the sooner you go the better.”
It was agreed, accordingly, that my wife should re-
main at home with the younger boys, as on the
preceding day, while Fritz and I should proceed te
the wreck.

I then called on the children to awake and dress
themselves. Fritz, who was the first to get up, ran
to find his jackall, which had already stiffened in the
cold night air. He placed it, therefore, erect at the
tent door, and waited impatiently for his brothers to
come out. But the dogs were before them, and see-
ing their enemy standing apparently ready to assail

(80) A
o2 RETURN TO THE WRECK.

them, they set up a fierce howl, and were with
difficulty restrained from tearing it in pieces. The
children ran out forthwith to learn the occasion of
the noise, with Jack at their head, accompanied by
his little bed-fellow perched on his shoulder; but no
sooner did the monkey perceive the jackall, than he
fled into the tent, and ensconced himself in the moss
till only his nose was visible. The children were
greatly astonished at this strange sentinel at the
door. Ernest pronounced it to be a fox, Jack a wolf,
and Francis a yellow dog. Fritz laughed at their
different names, and especially ridiculed that of
Ernest, who was greatly offended at being made the
subject of his merriment. I had at length to inter-
fere to restore harmony, and for this purpose told
them that the animal was called a jackall, but at the
same time, I added, this laughter of Fritz had been
altogether misplaced, for the jackall partakes of the
nature of the wolf, the fox, and the dog, so that there
was good sense and probability in all the names.
Having thus reconciled their differences, I summoned
them to our morning devotions, after which we
proceeded to breakfast. My wife had nothing to
place before us but biscuits, which were so dry and
hard that they almost bade defiance to our hungry
teeth. Fritz asked for cheese to eat with it, while
Ernest, who had been already examining one of the
unopened casks, now came to me and said, “ Father,
'f we had only butter to these biscuits it would be a
vast improvement.” “ Always with these foolish i
RETURN TO THE WRECK. 53

of yours,’ I replied; “ don’t you kuow, my boy,
that a morsel of this good cheese is worth all the
butter in the world when we have it not.” “ But
perhaps my 2/3 might not be so foolish,” said Ernest,
“if you would open that cask.” ‘What cask do
vou talk about?” saidI. “It is this cask I mean, to
be sure,” replied he. ‘ I have already had my knife
into it, and it is filled with excellent salt butter.”
“ Indeed,” said I, “your love for good things is of
service for once. Come, boys, who loves bread and
butter?” After some consideration, I cautiously
made a small opening in the lower end of the cask,
so as to extract a little of the butter without exposing
the whole to injury by the air and heat of the sun.
We then sat down with one of our cocoa-nut vessels
filled with good salt butter. We now toasted our
biscuits at the fire, and applying a plentiful covering
of butter when they were hot, we soon converted them
into an edible and most excellent repast, on which
we made a hearty breakfast. While we were thus
employed, the dogs had remained patiently at our
side, expecting to share in our repast, and I remarked
what a cause of gratitude it was that we had been
provided with such faithful protectors, and observing
the marks of the jackall’s fangs still visible on them,
J reminded them that it was our duty to do what we
could both for their protection and comfort. “If we
could find on board the ship,” said Fritz, ‘a pair of
spiked collars, they would prove the best protectors for
Turk and Bill in case they have again to encounter such
54 RETURN TO THE WRECK.

fierce assailants.” ‘O1” said Jack, in his usually
ready way, “if my mother will only help me, I ean
make them collars myself very well!” “ Very good,
my little man,” said I, “exercise your inventive
faculties, and let us see what you can devise. You,
Fritz, come along with me. Your mother and I
have already decided that it is necessary I should
return to-day. to the wreck to bring back as much as
is recoverable. You will accompany me, while your
brothers remain to assist their mother.”

While Fritz made ready our primitive boat of
casks, I erected a flag-staff on an eminence near the
shore, and attached to it a piece of sail-cloth, to serve
as a signal between the vessel and the shore. This,
I directed my wife, should be allowedgto fly so long
as all was well, and if it continued to certify to us of
their safety, I had prepared her for the possibility of
our remaining all night at the wreck. I directed
her, however, in case of any threat of danger, to pull
down the signal, and fire three guns, when we were
to hasten to the shore.

We took nothing with us but our guns and ammu-
nition, relying on the provisions left on board. Fritz,
however, insisted on taking the little monkey with
him, that he might regale it with the cow’s milk.
We quitted the shore in silence, and not without
some thoughts of danger at the prospect of this
necessary separation. When we had got a little way
from the shore, I perceived that a current set in in the
direction we were going, occasioned by the force of
RETURN TO THE WRECK. 55

the river, and we were glad to avail oursclves of its
aid. Though altogether inexperienced in maritime
affairs, I succeeded in steering our boat so as to keep
its head to the current, and we were carried by this
means a considerable way towards the wreck, with
little or no exertion on our parts. When this failed
us, We resumed our oars, and soon moored our boat
alongside of the vessel.

So soon as the boat was secured, Fritz jumped on
the deck, with the monkey on his shoulder, and
hastened to the place where the cattle were secured.
I was gratified to see him take so kind an interest in
the little creature. The animals welcomed us with
manifest joy, though it was obvious that they had
not suffered fyom our absence, as a part of their food
still remained untasted. The monkey found the
milk of the cow most palatable, and greatly amused
us by the lively grimaces with which he testified his
joy. Having seen that the animals were sufliciently
supplied with food and drink, we took some refresh-
ment ourselves, and consulted on the best mode of
proceeding. Tritz counselled that we should begin
by providing a sail for the boat, ‘for,’ said he,
“the current which was such a help to us coming
can only retard our return, while the wind that was
against us will amply supply its place when so pro-
vided.” The advice seemed excellent, and we forth-
with proceeded to put it in execution. A plank was
bored by means of a chisel, and fastened across one
of the casks; into this we inserted a pole strong
56 RETURN TO THE WRECK.

enough for a mast, and secured it, by means of ropes,
to both ends of our boat; a cross spar was soon rigged
on this, and a triangular piece of canvass secured to it
by means of cords, sothat we could shift it in any way
to take advantage of the wind. ‘To these useful addi-
ditions Fritz added a red streamer from the mast-head,
and named our improved craft the Deliverance. 'To
complete the vessel, I added two pieces of raised wood
at either end to act as grooves for inserting an oar, so
as to admit of steering it equally freely either wav.

While thus employed the day had already advanced
so, that I saw it would be impossible to effect any-
thing satisfactory without spending the night where
‘we were. We aceordingly made a concerted signal
to inform my dear wife of our intention, for which
she was already in some degree prepared; and |
employed the rest of the time in emptying our boat-
casks of the stone ballast we had brought in them
from the shore, in order to substitute for it such
things as seemed most likely to prove of use to us.
The ship had been freighted for the purpose of esta-
blishing a new colony at the place whither we were
bound, so that it contained an unusually large supply
of objects peculiarly suited to our present cireum
stances, and our greatest difficulty seemed to arise
from the necessity of selection. Powder, shot, tools,
and pieces of canvass and clothing, were speedily
substituted for the ballast. Our experience had also
taught us already the need of an abundant supply of
knives, forks, spoons, and kitchen utensils of all sorts,
RETURN TO THE WRECK. 57

We found also in the captain’s cabin a service of silver
plate, covers and dishes of pewter, and a hamper filled
with choice wines. All these were secured, along
with a stock of provisions, destined for the officers’
table, including portable soup, cases of prepared
meats, Westphalia hams, sausages, and a supply of
potatoes, maize, wheat, and other valuable seeds.
Fritz also got hold of some hammocks and blankets;
we collected as many implements of husbandry as it
was possible to put into our boat; and to all these I
added a barrel of sulphur to make matches with, so
that our boat was soon loaded nearly to the brim; and
had not the sea been perfectly calm, the attempt to
navigate it would have been attended with no little
danger.

The shades of evening now began to set in, and
after exchanging signals once more with those on
shore, to assure ourselves of their safety, we made
provision for passing another night at sea. Having
supped heartily on the abundant stores within our
reach, we commended ourselves and the dear objects
of our care and anxiety to the protection of Heaven,
and withdrew to the couches we had provided. The
day’s labours had not been accomplished without
considerable fatigue, and Fritz was soon sleeping
soundly; but I could not close my eyes, from the
recollection of the dangers of the previous night, and
the uncertainty of what new and unknown perils my
wife and children might be exposed to in my absence.
I comforted myself, however, with the thought of the
58 FLOATING THE HERD.

faithful dogs which had already proved such efficient
protectors to us all, and felt grateful to NMeaven for
having given us so ready a means of defence.

CHAPTER YI.
FLOATING THE HERD.

Wirn.the first clear light in the morning, I jumped
on deck, and, with the help of the large telescope,
had the satisfaction of not only seeing the signal
which denoted the safety of my family still flying at
the post, but while Fritz was busy preparing our
breakfast I kept my eye on the tent, and at length
was gratified by seeing my wife come out of it and
look with attention towards the wreck. We ex-
changed signals of mutual recognition by pulling our
flags up and down, and then Fritz and I proceeded
to do ample justice to a breakfast of biscuit, ham, and
wine. Being thus freed from all anxiety about those
we had left on shore, we now set about the consider-
ation of the possibility of rescuing the eattle from the
wreck.

We had set out for the wreck with no definite
ideas on this subject. Fritz now suggested a raft;
but even had we been able to construct one suffi-
ciently large, how were we to get such unmanage-
able passengers as a cow, an ass, or a sow, on board,
or, when there, to keep them from upsetting it? The
FLOATING THE HERD. 59

sheep and goats might indeed have been removed by
such means, but what to do with the larger animals
puzzled me. Fritz’s mind was fertile in suggestions,
the most of which, however, were made without re-
flection, and altogether unpracticable. “ Why not,”
he at length exclaimed, “just throw them into the
sea, and let them swim ashore for themselves?”
“That,” said I, “might answer with the fat sow,
which I am least anxious about, but it is useless for
the rest.’’ ‘Then why not provide them all with
swimming-jackets,” said the boy, laughing. “ An
excellent idea!’ I exclaimed immediately. “ Let
us lose no further time, but set to work.”

We selected a sheep for our first experiment, and
having attached floats to its sides, threw it into the
sea. I watched the poor animal with a mixture of
hope and fear. It sunk, and I thought was never to
reappear; but presently we saw its head appear above
the water, where it floated without any exertion.
With some little difficulty we got a rope about it, and
drew it back to the wreck. We now proceeded to
provide the whole with this novel swimming apparatus.
Twoempty water-casks, secured by means of sail-cloth
bands and ropes, were attached. one on each side of
the cow and ass. A quantity of cork which we dis-
covered on board proved a more convenient means
for providing the smaller animals with floats. The
large sow was the most troublesome, but after two
hours’ hard labour we had the satisfaction of secing
all ready. We next tied a cord to the head or horns
60 FLOATING THE HERD.

of each, with a piece of wood at the end. The force
of the waves had already made a considerable breach
in the side of the wreck, and this we soon enlarged
sufficiently to give free egress to the cattle. ‘The ass
was the first to take the water, where he floated in
gallant style. We were soon successful in setting
the whole afloat; and getting into our boat, we pushed
about among them till we had secured the whole of
the cords, and taken them in tow. The sow alone
proved completely unmanageable. We were glad to
let it go, but it soon made for the shore of its own
accord, and was the first to land. We now discovered
the advantage of our mast and sail. Favoured by a
slight breeze, we were carried gently towards the
land, dragging the whole flock at our stern, which,
had we depended on our oars alone, we saw must
have been left to their fate. As we were thus mov-
ing towards the shore, I was suddenly filled with
alarm by my son, who called out, ‘ Father! father!
we are lost.” J had been watching with the tele-
scope our party on shore, who seemed to be preparing
for some excursion. On looking about I observed an
enormous fish making towards our boat; but just as
it was about to seize one of the sheep, Fritz aimed
his gun and fired with such success, that he hit the
monster in the head. It plunged immediately and
disappeared, leaving, however, a track of blood
behind it, which showed that the shot had taken
good effect.

T laid aside my telescope for my gun, in ease of a
FLOATING THE HERD. 61

repetition of the attack, and with the rudder in hand
guided the boat without further risk to a convenient
place for the cattle landing. We then detached the
cords, and had soon the satisfaction of seeing the
whole get safely ashore. We then rowed round to
our old landing-place, and having secured the boat,
we looked around us for our friends. To our great
disappointment, not one was visible; but we were not
kept long in suspense. A shout of joy announced
that the youngsters had discovered us. My wife ran
to welcome me back, as if after an absence of years,
and as soon as the first transports of joy were past,
we sat down to recount our adventures. My dear
wife was delighted to find how valuable a counsellor
Fritz had proved to me, and testified much satisfac-
tion at seeing herself surrounded by so useful a herd
as we had brought ashore.

T now obscrved that Jack carried round his waist
a belt of yellow skin, into which he had thrust two
pistols. ‘“ Where,” said I, “have you got this
sinuggler’s costume?” “It is my own manufacture,”’
said he, with an air of satisfaction, ‘and look also at
the dogs.” I now observed for the first time that
each of the dogs was provided with a collar of similar
materials, stuck full of large nails, which projected
outward, and supplied a formidable defence to their
throats. “It is & marvel,” said I, “if you have
been able both to devise and execute this.” “Indeed,
father,” replied he, “it is my own work, with some
help from mamma in the sewing of them.” The
62 FLOATING THE HERD.

truth now came out, that the skin of Fritz’s jackall
had supplied the leather, at which he was by no
means pleased; but on his showing some symptoms
of anger, I reminded him that he must now learn to
act like a man, whereas his brothers were but chil-
dren. This had the desired effect; and as he dis-
covered, on getting near the tent, that the body of the
jackall was already becoming offensive, he was glad
to lend a hand to drag it down to the sea.

We had as yet perceived no indications of supper.
I therefore told Fritz to go and bring the Westphalia
ham, which had supplied our breakfast. My wife
was no less surprised than gratified at the sight. “J
am not altogether unprepared, however,” said she,
producing at the same time a basket containing about
a dozen turtle eggs, ‘‘ but I must reserve the narra-
tive of our shore adventures,’”’ said she, “ till supper
is over.’ While, therefore, she employed herself in
preparing a dish of ham and turtle eggs, Fritz and |
proceeded to unload our boat, having first succeeded,
though not without some difficulty, in catching the ass,
which our lazy Ernest was glad to see was to be the
chief bearer of our burdens in future.

When we returned, my wife had spread a table-
cloth on the top of a cask, and there she had disposed
a dish of ham in the centre, flanked by a tempting
omelet, which the turtle eggs had supplied, and on
the other side a dish of toasted cheese. We now
produced the knives, forks, plates, and spoons, as

well as the captain’s silver service, which we had
THE SECOND JOURNEY OF DISCOVERY. 63

brought from the wreck, and our supper table pre-
sented an appearance rarely seen on a desert island.
We were soon surrounded by the two dogs, the fowls,
and the pigeons, who seemed to demand a share of
the good things. The sheep and goats also had
gathered near, so that we already felt as if we were
the sovereigns of our little kingdom. As for the
dueks and geese, they had established their quarters
in a marsh on the river’s brink, and seemed too well
content with the abundant supplies it afforded, to
think of leaving it.

Our supper proved most acceptable; and when it
was about done, I despatched I'ritz to the boat for a
bottle of Canary wine, which I had brought out. of
the captain’s cabin, and invited my wife to narrate
her adventures during my absence.

CHAPTER VII.
THE SECOND JOURNEY OF DISCOVERY.

“Tite morning you left,” said my good wife, begin-
ning her narrative, “I was chiefly taken up with
watching your progress, and the signals which as-
sured me of your safety. But this morning, having
satisfied myself that we had nothing to fear, I began
to look about me to better purpose. I must look
out, said I to myself, some more shady and shel-
tered spot for our tent. Where we are, we cannot
64 THE SECOND JOURNEY OF DISCOVERY.

go out without being exposed to the burning rays of
the sun, which greatly incommode us. We set out
accordingly on a journey of discovery; the children
and the two dogs marching with me, and fording the
river where we had seen you cross before. Ernest
was the first to get over, and Jack followed, while I
took little Francis on my back, and we were soon all
on the other side. I filled a large flask, which I had
brought with me, with water, the boys were provided
with our game-bags, with a supply of provisions, and
Ernest and Jack each carried a gun in ease of anv
sudden danger. I now saw the advantage of your
having so early accustomed the boys to the use of
fire-arms, and really felt my two dear boys, though
only twelve and ten years of age, to be protectors as
well as companions.

“T so longed for the enjoyment of the shade of
trees after being thus scorched by the sun, that I
directed our course towards a wood we had in view.
The long grass and reeds, however, which were
taller than the children’s heads, rendered progress
extremely difficult and harassing. All at once we
were startled by a loud whirring noise, apparently
at our very feet, and at the same instant a bird of
large size rose from out the grass and flew away,
before the boys could recover presence of mind enough
to present their guns. As soon as my first fright
was over, I could not avoid laughing at the mortified
look of both the boys. ‘You must have your guns
ready,’ said I, ‘for you see the birds have not man-
THE SECOND JOURNEY OF DISCOVERY. 65

ners enough here to wait till you shoot them.’ ‘I
am sure it was an eagle,’ said Francis, ‘it was so
large.’ Ernest ridiculed the idea, and pronounced it
to be a bustard. They were getting into hot discus-
sion on the subject, when I observed to them, that if
the bird had waited long enough for them to examine
it, they would have had time to shoot it too. ‘ Let
him only give us the same chance again,’ said Ernest,
scornfully, ‘and we will have leisure enough after I
have shot him, to determine what he is.’ He had
scarcely finished his boastful speech, when, whirr!
went another precisely like the first, almost past his
nose. The boys were so completely taken by sur-
prise, that they did not offer to present their guns,
while I said to them jocosely, ‘Such a famous pair of
sportsmen as we have! we need not fear want so long
as we have you to supply us with game.’ Ernest
was so mortified, that he looked as if ready to ery:
but Jack good-humouredly took off his hat, and
making a very formal bow, said, ‘Pray, Me. Bird,
only have the goodness to pay us another visit; and
see if we do not improve our better acquaintance!’
On making a few steps in advance, we found the nest
they had left. It was formed of dried grass, with
little appearance of skill. Fragments of broken
shells in it showed that the young had been recently
hatched, and we had little doubt that the covey had
only scattered into the neighbouring grass; but our
own progress was too slow to render it probable that
we should be able to catch them.
66 THE SECOND JOURNEY OF DISCOVERY.

“We soon reached the wood we had in view, where
the boys found a new source of interest in watching
the strange birds, with gorgeous and extremely
varied plumage, that flitted about the higher branches
apparently perfectly heedless of us. The wood, how-
ever, was altogether different from what I had con-
ceived. It was rather a group of ten or twelve trees,
the trunks of which seemed to be sustained in their
position by arched roots of the trees. Jack climbed
up one of these singular stems to measure the main
trunk with a string, and found that it was above
thirty feet in circumference. Between the roots it
must have been more than forty feet, and I found
that it measured thirty-two paces round the verge of
the roots. ‘The foliage is abundant, and the branches
thick, so that it furnished a most agreeable shade,
while underneath, the whole area which it enclosed
was carpeted with a short tender plant, growing
very thick, and forming a most soft and pleasant
sward. Altogether it seemed to me one of the most
charming retreats I had ever seen, and I resolved to
go no further, but to enjoy its shelter till it should
be time to return. A small stream was at hand to
supply’a refreshing draught, and here we opened our
provision bags and made our noon-day meal. The
dogs, which had been wandering for some time, now
joined us, but to my surprise they lay down without
looking for food, and were soon asleep. For my
own part, I was so enamoured of the spoi, that it
seemed to me if we could only establish our lodging
THE SECOND JOURNEY OF DISCOVERY, 67

supported on the arching pillars of these trees, we
would be beyond the reach of danger, and in as de-
lightful a spot as heart could desire.

“On our return we chose a path which soon led us
to the sea-shore. Here we found spars, casks, chests,
and other articles which had floated from the wreck;
but they were all too large for us to think of bringing
them home. We contented ourselves, therefore, with
dragging and rolling as many as we could beyond
the reach of high water. While doing so, I observed
the dogs hunting for a kind of crab, which they ap-
peared to eat with great relish. This accounted for
their former conduct, and gave me no little satisfac-
tion, as it removed all dread of their becoming a bur-
den on us in ease of any failing in our provisions.
When we resumed our walk homeward, I observed
Bill turn up something in the sand, which he
devoured with avidity. Ernest, who was nearest,
immediately pronounced them to be turtles’ eggs.
ran immediately, followed by the children, and col-
lected about two dozen of them. The rest we left to
Bill as a reward for his sagacity.

“While we were carefully depositing this unex-
pected prize in our provision bags, I chanced to look
towards the sea, and was astonished to desery a sail.
I knew not what to think at first, but both Ernest and
Jack were sure it must be you, and I soon became
convinced that they were right. We lost no further
time, but hastened to the river side. We crossed it
with greater confidence than formerly, leaping from

(80) 5
63 BRIDGE-BUILDING,

stone to stone without needing to wade; and we
arrived, as you know, in time to welcome you on
your safe return.”

Such was my wife’s narrative of the day’s adven-
tures. I now began to rally her, somewhat sarcas-
tically, on the idea of establishing our quarters in
this favourite tree. “Would you have us roost,”
said I, “like fowls among the branches? And pray
how do you propose that we should get up to our
perch?” I soon found, however, that my dear wife
was not inclined to have her ideas received in any
such manner, and I therefore assumed a serious man-
ner, and desired her to explain her plan. While we
had been listening to her, however, the shades of
evening had been stealing on us unperceived; and
fatigued as we all were with the labours of the day,
we knelt together in prayer, and then retired once
more to rest.

CHAPTER VIII.

BRIDGE-BUILDING.

“Listen to me!” said I to my wife next morning;
“does it not seem as if Providence had conducted us
to the place where we now are? We are closed in
on all sides by the river, the rocks, and the sea, while
our vicinity to the wreck will enable us still further
to enrich ourselves with its stores. Let us, there-
iDGE-BUILDING,. 69



fore, have patience, and be content where we are for
il I have bro ugh from the ship
all that can possibly be of use to us.”

“What you say may be all very well,” replied
my wife, “but E must first tell you that the “heat



some time at least,

here is altogether intolerable; while, as to the safety
which you prize se much, did it save us from the
jJackalls ? or will it be any more effective in keeping
away lions or tigers? and as te the treasures in the
wreck, I renounce them with all my heart; for
when you were away for the last two days on tho

sea, I was a prey to the most fearful Ae eres



and dreaded you might never return.” I acknow

ledged there was some foree in the arguments of 1

wife; “but,” said I, “it will perhaps be better that
we make a compromise. Ifwe make our abode beneath
your favourite trees, we must still keep our magazine
and store-house among these rocks; and, indeed, with
the facilities I have for blowing away some portion
of them near the river with gunpowder, this place
may be rendered an impregnable shelter, to which we
can retreat at any emergency. The first thing we
must think of, with a view to our proposed emigra-
tion, is to construct a bridge across the river.” “A
bridge!” exclaimed my wife in undisguised astonish-
ment; “if we are to wait here till you build a bridge,
we may make up our minds to live and die on the
spot. We have crossed the river already, have we
not? And the cow and ass can carry on their backs
all we possess.” ‘And would you propose,” I re-
70 BRIDGE-BUILDING,

plied somewhat hastily, ‘to drown all the sheep and
poultry, to say nothing of dragging through the
water all your cow’s and ass’s burdens! A bridge is
indispensable; and while I am making it, let me beg
of you to employ yourself in preparing some sacks
and baskets in which to carry our little store. It
will not be of mere temporary use, for the streain
is, no doubt, liable to floods, and must at certain
seasons become impassable by any other means.”

My dear wife acknowledged at once the force of
my arguments, and was all the more reconciled to
my plans from the proposal of providing a magazine
for the powder among the rocks, as it had already
been a source of anxiety and fear to her.

As soon as morning prayers were over, we pro-
eeeded to breakfast, and Fritz had the pleasure of
seeing his monkey suck one of the goats as if it had
been its own mother. My wife next proceeded to
milk the cow, which supplied us with an excellent
repast, part of it being boiled along with the hard
ship-biscuit. She also put some of it into a large
flaggon for our refreshment during the day; and I
now proceeded to prepare our boat for another expe-
dition to the wreck, in order to procure wood for
constructing the bridge. So soon as breakfast was
over, I set off, taking Ernest as well as Fritz with
me, that we might accomplish our purpose with the
less delay. We rowed with all our might till we
got into the current, which soon carried us out of the
bay. But we had scarcely arrived off a little island
BRIDGE- BUILDING, 71

which lay to the left, than we perceived a large
quantity of sea-fowl congregated about some object.
I was curious to know what could be the cause. I
steered for the spot, and findmg we were making
very slow progress, I hoisted the sail, in order to
take advantage of a breath of wind which had sprung
up.

Fritz was the first to descry that the whole flock
of birds were perched on the carcass of a huge fish,
which had been cast ashore on the island. We
brought the boat alongside, and securing it to a large
stone, I stepped ashore without disturbing the birds,
so intent were they on their prey. Fritz was
astonished at the huge size of this monster fish, and
repeatedly exclaimed, “ How can so huge a monster
have been brought here?” “TI believe,’ said I to
him, “that you yourself are the cause; for this is
undoubtedly the very fish you fired at yesterday ; and
see, here are the marks of the two balls in its head.”
“ Indeed it is!” said Fritz, not a little proud of his
achievement. “I know I had put two balls in my
gun, and here they are lodged to good purpose in
the horrible head of it.” “It is indeed a hideous
monster,”’ said I; “the sight of these tremendous
jaws, armed with such rows of teeth, even when dead,
makes one shudder. We cannot be too thankful to
Providence for our escape from such a monster. Nor
must I forget that we owe to the courage and skill
of Fritz that the shark is thus laid a dead carcass on
this island.” The birds were so intent on their feast,
72 BRIDGE- BUILDING.

that they scarcely took notice of our approach, nor
could they be dispersed till Ernest drew out the ram-
rod of his gun and struck with it right and left among
them with such vigour that they were compelled re-
luctantly to abandon their prey. We then cut off
some portions of its rough skin, which it had occur-
red to me might prove useful in various ways, and
especially as a substitute for a file or rasp, owing to
its extreme roughness. This, however, was not the
only fruits of our visit to the island ; for I observed,
to my great satisfaction, that a number of planks and
spars were strewed along the shore, which were
admirably adapted for my purpose, and would thus
save me the trouble of going to the wreck. From
these I selected as many as were suitable, and with
the help of my two boys we soon had them afloat.
Our next care was to arrange them and bind them
together into a raft, which we secured to the stern of
the boat, and then hoisting our sail we turned its
prow towards the shore. Thus, through this fortunate
chance we had accomplished in a couple of hours
what I anticipated would have occupied us the whole
day, and involved no slight amount of labour.

We were soon once more in the bay, and made for
our old landing-place. On getting ashore I shouted
loudly to call the attention of those who had remained
on shore, and was soon cheered by their welcome
reply, and we caught sight of them approaching
from the river, each carrying a handkerchief filled
with some new supply, which they opened out before
BRIDGE-PUILDING. 73

us, displaying a store of lobsters enough to furnish
our table for days to come. Little Francis was full
of glee, telling me that it was he who had first dis-
covered them, while Jack recounted his exertions
with the net, and his courage in wading into the
water to get them. I congratulated both on their
zeal and success, and assured them I would have
great satisfaction in eating a dish of their providing.
Jack, as he assured me, had set out with Francis to
look for a proper place for the building of the bridge,
when he suddenly called to his brother to observe
that Fritz’s jackall was covered with lobsters. They
added that they could have sceured many more had
I not called them off just as they were gathering
them. Their supply, however, was already more
than sufficient, and I could not avoid reflecting with
thankfulness that our lot had been cast where the
means of subsistence was attainable with so moderate
exertion.

While my wife was busied with preparations for
cooking this new supply of provisions, I proceeded
with the boys to examine the river, and decide on
the proper site for our bridge. The place which
had already struck little Jack’s fancy was a very
suitable one, but it was at a considerable distance
from the nearest spot where it was possible to land
the timber. Every day’s experience, however, was
rendering us more self-dependent. I called to mind
the simple harness described as in use by the Lap-
landers with their rein-deers. The ass, therefore, I
G4 BRIDGE-BUILDING.

yoked by simply passing the loop of a rope round
its neck; and then carrying it through between its
legs, I secured it to a piece of timber which I wished
to draw ashore. The cow was in like manner har-
nessed by a rope attached to its horns; and we were
soon able, without any great difficulty, to drag the
whole materials of the bridge to its destined site.
It was now necessary to ascertain the breadth of the
river before we could complete our plans. But this
Ernest ingeniously accomplished by tying a stone
to the end of a ball of stout pack-thread, and throw-
ing it across the river. We had thus at once a
measure by which to determine the length of beams
required. The breadth from bank to bank was
eighteen feet; and as it was necessary to allow suffi-
cient additional length to the timbers to make the
whole secure, I chose some beams twenty-four feet
long. But how to get these laid across the river
was now the question; and as we were already
fatigued with the labour we had undergone, I pro-
posed that we should take it into consideration while
we were partaking of the dinner, which my wife now
announced to be ready. We found she had not been
idle in our absence. In addition to a very agreeable
dish she had cooked of the lobsters, she had also
prepared rice and milk, which our appetite prepared
us todo ample justice to. Before beginning this,
however, she called on us to inspect two sacks she
had made for the ass, which, in the absence of large
needles, she had ingeniously contrived to stitch by
BRIDGE-BUILDING. 75

using a sharp nail for an awl. Notwithstanding
her difficulties, she had contrived, by dint of perse-
verance, to make two very passable saddle-bags,
which I failed not to commend as they deserved.
We had no time, however, to spare for gossip, but
despatched our meal in haste, and hurried back to
our work.

After considering various plans for accomplishing
our purpose, I secured the end of one of the long
beams loosely to the trunk of a large tree, and then
attaching a long rope to the opposite extremity, I
threw the loose end, by means of a stone, to the oppo-
site bank of the stream. My next step was to cross
the river, taking a block with me, which I secured
to a tree, and then passing the rope through it, I
returned with the end, and, harnessing both the ass
and cow to it, I drove them rapidly in the opposite
direction. The device completely succeeded. The
beam slowly rose into the air, turning round the trunk
of the tree as a swivel; and, on my checking my
novel pair of draught horses, it dropt easily into its
place. Fritz and Jack were no less delighted than
myself, and testified their joy, somewhat to my alarm,
by leaping on it and crossing the stream on this
narrow bridge.

The chief difficulty was now removed. Three
other beams were laid across by the same process,
and, with the ready help of my sons, arranged at
equal distances at the most convenient part of the
river. Across these we laid the planks, purposely
76 CHANGE OF RESIDENCE.

leaving them unfixed, so as to admit of their removal
if we wished to interrupt the communication. I
found that their weight was sufficient to keep them
in their place; and having seen that all was ready,
I summoned my wife to examine the bridge, which
she had persuaded herself was to be the labour of a
lifetime. She was no less delighted than the chil-
dren, and, indeed, I partook of her excitement, and
we both ran across the bridge and back again, well
pleased to find how difficulties yielded to our perse-
verance. F'atigued with our day’s labours, we were
glad to retire to our tent, where, after offering up
our thanks to God, we were speedily in the enjoy-
ment of well-earned repose.

CHAPTER IX.
CHANGE OF RESIDENCE,

Tne following morning, my first thought was to
warn the children of the necessity of caution and
prudence in the journey we were now proposing—
urging them not to wander from our side. For my
own part, I could not avoid some feelings of regret
at the prospect of leaving an abode which, though
we had occupied it for so short a time, had been so
safe a shelter to us in our necessities. With the
help of the boys, the flock was soon together. [I
secured a pair of bags firmly to the back of the ass
aw
é

CHANGE OF RESIDENCE.

and cow, and packed in them as much of our heavy
baggage as we could contrive to make them carry—
kitchen utensils, tools, provisions, hammocks, and
blankets, were all laid across the backs of these use-
ful animals. Having despatched a hasty breakfast,
we were about to set out; but my wife remonstrated
against leaving the fowls, even for a single night,
and also told me that some means of disposing of
little Francis must be found, as the child was in-
capable of a long walk. I accommodated the little
fellow behind the hammocks, on the ass’s back;
while the other boys set off in pursuit of the poultry
and pigeons, from whence they returned without
accomplishing anything else than putting themselves
in ill-humour. Their mother laughed at them for
their thoughtless folly, and sprinkling a few grains
and crumbs of bread, she soon got the whole poultry
and pigeons around her; and, decoying them by the
same means into the tent, I closed it from the out-
side, and the whole, with wings and feet tied, were
soon safe in two hampers on either side of the .
donkey.

All our stores which we could not carry with us
were now collected into the tent; and having secured
it as carefully as we could, and arranged all the
larger casks and chests, both full and empty, around
it, we took our departure. Each of us carried a
provision bag and a gun. Fritz and his mother
marched at the head. The cow and the ass, with its
rider, followed them. The goats, under the conduct
78 CHANGE OF RESIDENCE.

of Jack, formed the third detachment, the ape sitting
perched on his shoulders, and grinning behind at us,
to our great amusement. Ernest followed with the
sheep, and I came last of all as the rear-guard; the
dogs occupying no particular place in our cavalcade,
but running now before and now behind, as if seeing
that all was right. The caravan slowly advanced
with a most patriarchal aspect; and the idea of a
nomade tribe seemed to have occurred to both Fritz
and Ernest at the same time as myself. ‘“ We are
now moving,’ I said, “as our Eastern fathers were
wont to travel from place to place. The Tartars,
Arabs, and other wandering nations, are wont to this
day to follow such a wandering life; but they have
their camels and horses, while we must be content
with our poor ass and cow. For my part, I hope
this migration will be our last.” My wife replied
that our new destination, under the shade of her
favourite trees, would amply repay all the toils of the
journey. The sow had proved so restive and un-
manageable, that, after one or two ineffectual attempts,
we had given up the idea of bringing her off. But
we were not long gone when she set off voluntarily
in the same direction—testifying, however, by her
short grunts, the extreme dissatisfaction with which
she regarded our whole procedure. New difficulties
beset us as soon as the bridge was crossed, for the
rich long grass tempted the animals to stray, and all
our orderly cavalcade was soon in total confusion.
The dogs were now of the greatest use; and when
CHANGE OF RESIDENCE. 79

we were once more in some order, I directed tho
leader to take the way along the coast, so as to avoid
the repetition of this disaster.

We had scarcely got fairly in motion again when
our dogs darted once more among the long grass,
and presently a fierce barking and howling got up,
as if they were engaged in combat with some fierce
assailant. Fritz immediately presented his gun
and hastened to the spot, followed by Jack, while
Ernest, with characteristic caution, retreated to his
mother’s side. Dreading the attack of some danger-
ous wild beast, I followed them immediately, calling
loudly to them to take care. My exhortations,
however, were fruitless. They pushed on boldly to
the scene of combat, and presently I heard Jack
shouting, ‘‘ Papa! papa! come quickly! a huge
porcupine!” Relieved of my greatest apprehensions
by this announcement, I soon reached the spot, and,
as they had said, the dogs were busy assailing a por-
cupine, which, whenever they approached it, elevated
its quills so suddenly, that the blood already flowed
from several wounds in their heads, and abundantly
accounted for their fierce howling. Jack, however,
had no idea of being an idle on-looker in this unequal
combat. Drawing a pistol from his belt, he presented
it at the porcupine with so well-directed an aim, that
his shot went through the head, leaving it dead on
the spot. Jack was not a little proud of this achieve-
ment, while Fritz, by no means satisfied to be thus
outdone by his little brother, commented with covert
50 CHANGE OF RESIDENCE,

jealousy on the imprudence and rashness of his con-
duct, and asked with some acerbity if he did not
sce that he might have shot one of the dogs, or, in-
deed, his father or himself. Jack was by no means
inclined to make any such acknowledgments, and
words were running high between them, when I in-
terfered, and rebuked the spirit which Fritz was
giving way to, showing that, though Jack was per-
haps a little imprudent, he had exerted himself
courageously for the common good, and urging on
both to cultivate generous and brotherly feelings
towards each other. Even when dead, we found it
no easy matter to handle the poreupine, but, with the
help of some bundles of soft grass with which I
enveloped it, we got it removed, and placed in one of
the donkey’s panniers.

We resumed our march without further aceident,
Fritz going on before us with his gun, ready to have
the first shot should any new assailant appear. At
length we arrived within sight of what we already
styled The Land of Promise. The gigantic trees
exceeded my highest expectations. One and all
united in exclamations of wonder and delight, while
T congratulated my wife on her discovery and judi-
cious selection of this charming spot for our destined
abode. “Tf we can only contrive to fix our tent,”
said I to my wife, “up among these branches, as
you propose, we shall have little cause to dread the
attack of any wild beast.”

We now set about unloading our beasts, and let
CHANGE OF RESIDENCE, 81

them graze, only taking the precaution to shackle
their fore-leg's, so as to prevent them wanderhig far,
with the exception of the sow, which continued to
take its own way. The pigeons and poultry were
also restored to liberty, and left to choose their own
retreat. While my wife and I were discussing the
needful arrangements for our future habitation, we
were suddenly started by the report of a gun, and
immediately afterwards we heard the shout of Fritz,
who speedily reappeared with a large beautiful tiger-
cat which he had shot. “ Brave! my brave sports-
man,” said I, welcoming him on his return, “ you
have rendered good service to our pigeons and
poultry; the foe you have just slain would have
made an end of them ina single night. Wage an
exterminating war with all such enemies, or we shall
not long have a chicken ieft.’”? A conversation now
followed between Ernest, Fritz, and myself, as to the
exact nature of this animal. I explained to them
that I did not conceive it to be that which goes by
the name of the tiger-cat at the Cape of Good Hope,
but rather the margay, a fierce animal, found in
various parts of South America, and known as a
deadly enemy to all the smaller beasts and birds ot
the forest. Fritz expressed his desire to preserve
the skin, begging that none of his brothers would
meddle with it as they had done with that of the
jackall, and appealing at the same time to me to
advise what would be the best purpose for him to
apply it to. I recommended him to lose no time in
82 CUANGE OF RESIDENCE.

skinning it, and suggested that he would do well to
make for himself such another belt as that of his
brother Jack, while the remainder of the skin might
be employed in making cases for the knives, forks,
spoons, and other kitchen utensils, which were at
present liable to be injured or lost. Jack was, in
like manner, bent upon having his poreupine skinned,
to which we were all the more willing, that the flesh
of that animal is considered a delicacy, and was
therefore applicable to our present wants. I got no
peace from the two boys till I had directed them as
to the best means of taking the skins off their prizes,
while Ernest stocd by, watching our operations, with
his hands in his pockets, sagely discussing the habits
of the animals, and the nature of the trees under
which we were sheltered. The latter he pronounced
to be very large hazel trees. In this, however, I
persuaded him that he was mistaken, explaining my
reasons for believing that the tree was the moun-
tain mangrove.

Francis had meanwhile been industriously em-
ployed gathering dry sticks for a fire. We next
went to the bed of a neighbouring little stream, and
selected stones with which to construct a fireplace;
and while my wife was busy preparing our supper,
I employed myself manufacturing packing-needles
for her by means of the porcupine’s quills. These
I readily perforated with a nail, which I heated in
the fire till the point was red hot, and then took hold
of the other end with a wet cloth. By this means a
ESTABLISHMENT UNDER THE GREAT TREE. 83

set of needles, of various sizes, were made in a very
7 ’
t

short time, to my wife’s great satisfaction. I recom-
mended her, however, to be sparing in the use of
our supply of twine and thread, especially as I had
already thought of constructing a rope ladder with
which to reach the lower branches of the trees. These,
however, were fully thirty feet from the ground, and
both I and the boys exerted all our strength in vain
in the attempt to throw a stone witha string attached.
to it over one of the boughs. We desisted, therefore,
and proceeded to partake of the poreupine soup, which
was excellent. Its fesh also furnished a very palat-
able dish, though my wife could not be persuaded
to taste it, but made her supper of ham and cheese.
As for the dogs, they made a no less hearty meal of
the margay, the skin of which I assisted Fritz in
distending in the bed of the neighbouring rivulet,
and securing it by means of large stones.

CHAPTER X.

ESTABLISHMENT UNDER THE GREAT TREE,

Wueny we had finished our repast, I observed to my

wife that I saw we must make up our minds to rest

under the trees for this night. I therefore desired

her to busy herself preparing harness for the ass and

cow, while I suspended our hammocks to the arched

roots of the trees, and covered them with the sail-cloth
(80) 6
84 ESTABLISMMENT UNDER THE GREAT TREE.

so as to furnish us with a shelter from wind and dew.
I then hastened with the boys to the shore in search
of pieces of wood necessary for carrying out my
plans. While I was busily examining many pieces
of the wreck which lay strewed about, Ernest directed
my attention to a quantity of bamboos, half-buried in
the sand, which, when cleaned and stripped of their
leaves, proved admirably adapted for the steps of my
ladder. These I cut with my hatchet into pieces of
four or five feet long, and then the boys bound them
into bundles for carrying home. I secured some of
the slender stalks with which to make arrows, for a
plan I had already conceived, and we then proceeded
towards a thicket where I hoped to obtain some
flexible boughs.

We approached with our wonted caution, in case
of disturbing any reptiles or wild beasts, allowing
Bill to precede us. But we had scarcely reached
its outskirts when Bill made a sudden spring and
darted among the long underwood, immediately after
which a troop of large flamingoes rose on the wing
with a loud rustling sound. . Fritz, who had been on
the watch, fired immediately, and wounded two of
them. One fell quite dead, but the other was only
slightly wounded in the wing, and, with the help of
Bill, we secured it alive, to Fritz’s great delight.
I was not, however, neglectful of my original object.
I picked out some of the canes which had done
flowering, and cut off the hard ends to point my
arrows, as I knew is practised among the natives of
ESTABLISHMENT UNDER THE GREAT TREE. 85

the Antilles. I also selected two of the largest canes
I could see for the purpose of measuring the height
of our great tree. We now prepared to return. I
gave Ernest the two long canes and the bundle of
bamboos to carry. Fritz bore the dead flamingo,
while I took charge of the living one.

We met with a hearty reception on our return.
The children were delighted with the beautiful addi-
tion we had brought to our poultry, though my wife
looked on it with a less favourable eye, anticipating
that so large a bird would require more food than all
the rest. But I soon dismissed all such apprehen-
sions by assuring her that the stranger bird would
not diminish her stores of grain, but would be well
content if he were allowed to hunt for himself for
worms and reptiles, or the little fish of the brook.
I informed them, moreover, that it was a bird easily
tamed, and on examining and dressing its wound
there appeared to be no doubt that it would speedily
heal. I therefore fastened it by a long cord to a
stake set in the ground, near the bank of the stream,
and in a very short time it appeared to be quite at
its ease among us.

In the meantime the boys had tied the two long
canes together, and set about measuring the height
of our large tree; but they soon returned, laughing
in a very scornful manner, and telling me if I hoped
to measure the tree I must have a very different rod,
for that one barely reached to the top of the arching
roots. I desired them, however, to wait a little
86 ESTABLISHMENT UNDER THE GREAT TREE.

before they gave such ample scope to their mirth,
and recalling to Fritz’s memory some lessons he had
received before he left home on the mode of ascer-
taining the altitudes of mountains, I then showed
him the application of the same method, employing
the canes with lines for the want of better mathe-
matical instruments; and I satisfactorily established
the height to the lower branches to be thirty feet, a
fact which I was desirous of ascertaining, with a
view to the construction of a ladder of the necessary
length. I next desired Fritz to measure how much
stout rope we possessed, as I wanted upwards of
sixty feet to suppiy the requisite amount for my
proposed ladder. The two youngest boys were set
to collect all the small string, while I sat down on
the grass and proceeded to construct arrows of the
canes I had gathered, filling them with wet sand to
give them weight, and pointing thein with the hard -
pieces of cane. Some feathers from the dead fla-
mingo, tied on to the opposite end, completed my
arrows. I then made a bow of one of the strongest
bamboos; but no sooner did the boys see me thus
equipped with a bow ard arrows, than they crowded
round me, shouting joyfully, “A bow! a bow and
arrows! Do let me try it!—and me!—and me
also!’ “ Have a little patience,” said I in reply.
“This is not made for mere amusement.” J then
obtained from my wife a ball of stout pack-thread,
which her never-failing bag supplied. One end of
the thread I secured to my arrow, and having un-
ESTABLISHMENT UNDER TITE GREAT TREE, 87

wound it, I shot off the arrow so that it passed over
one of the stoutest of the lower branches and fell on
the opposite side, carrying the thread with it. It
was easy, by means of the thread, to draw a stout
cord over the same bough; and having thus satisfac-
torily completed the preliminary steps, I now set
about the construction of the ladder. Fortunately
the supply of rope we possessed amply sutficed.
Having cut two portions of the needful length, I
stretched them along the ground about a foot apart.
Fritz meanwhile employed himself in eutting the
canes into pieces of about two feet long, which Ernest
handed to me, and these I attached to the ropes by
means of cords, with a space of about twelve inches
between, and Jack completed their fastening by
driving a stout nail through each, and into the rope,
so as effectually to prevent them from shifting.
Thus, in an incredibly short time, the whole was
completed, and then, tying it to the end of the rope,
I pulled it up, amid the rejoicing shouts of the boys,
who were already contending who should be the first
to ascend to the tree. I picked out Jack as the
nimblest and lightest, and set him up the tree; Fritz
followed him with a hammer and nails, and secured the
ladder more firmly at the top; after which I attached
its lower end to stakes firmly driven into the ground,
and then ascended to complete the work of fastening
it at the top. I carried with mea large pully and
rope, and tastened the former to a stout branch.
Having thus provided the means for drawing the
88 ESTABLISHMENT UNDER THE GREAT TREE.

needful materials aloft with which to build our castle
in the air, I directed the boys to descend. I then
smoothed the bough with my axe, so as to prevent
the fraying of the ropes. A clear moonlight had
enabled me to prolong my labours to a much later
hour than usual, but I was now completely worn
out, and descended with the intention of immediately
retiring to rest. Great was my surprise on reaching
the ground, to find that the boys, whom I had sent
down before me, had not been there. I was totally
at a loss what to imagine, but all anxiety was at
once dispelled by their voices being heard at that
moment singing the evening hymn on one of the
topmost boughs. The young rogues, bent on a frolic,
had slipped up the tree instead of descending, while
I was too busy to observe them. I did not deem it
necessary to make any very serious complaint when
they soon after descended. Supper was already
waiting us, and my wife produced a creditable set of
harness both for the ass and cow, which had been
her work while we were busy with our ladder. Our
supper done, my wife drew the poultry together by
scattering crumbs and grains so as to accustom them
to the spot. The pigeons were already at roost in
the tree, and the beasts secured to the roots among
which our hammocks were suspended. Some objec-
tions were expressed to the discomfort of these beds
after the pleasant cushion of moss on which they had
been sleeping; but I ridiculed such effeminacy, and
it was abundantly obvious by the looks of all that
ENCAMPMENT UNDER THE GREAT TREE. 89

they were already too sleepy to be very difficult ta
satisfy. We had gathered several heaps of faggots
and dried grass so as to form a circle around us.
These we lighted as watch-fires, and soon all were
sound asleep but myself.

CHAPTER XI.

ENCAMPMENT UNDER TIIE GREAT TREE.

My mind was too much preoccupied with anxieties
for the others to permit me to sleep till near dawn.
By degrees, however, I became more composed and
free from apprehension, and at length fell into a
sound sleep, from which I rose refreshed, and we
were soon all busy at work. My wife having milked
the cow and completed her household arrangements,
set off with Ernest, Jack, and Francis, and with the
ass in its new harness, to bring home a supply of
drift-wood from the shore. Fritz and I found enough
to do in the tree. We ascended the ladder once
more, and proceeded to make the needful arrange-
ments for our proposed dwelling. A further exami-
nation of it was of the most satisfactory kind. The
lower branches were nearly horizontal, and at no
great distance apart. We set to work with axe and
saw, and soon cut away the branches that interfered
with our plan. Those above them seemed conve-
niently adapted for suspending our hammocks from,
90 ENCAMPMENT UNDER THE GREAT TREE.

and above these we cleared away the smaller branches
so as to admit of our stretching the sail-cloth across
the whole as an awning and roof.

My wife speedily returned with her first load of
wood, and we set about raising the materials for our
proposed structure to the platform we had already
prepared for them. My wife and the younger boys
acted as the workmen below, and when the beams
which we required proved too weighty for their com-
bined strength, we found our block and tackle of the
utmost use. By this means I soon had several stout
beams across the lower branches, and having secured
them, the elevation of the planking was compara-
tively easy, the fragments of the wreck having sup-
plied abundance of wood, ready cut, for the flooring,
and. sufficiently light to be easily carried by our
assistants below. With these I laid a stout floor
across the beams, strengthening it by double planks
along the edges; and on these I raised a paling or
enclosure, so as to render it perfectly safe. The
next day being Sunday, we were anxious to com-
plete our dwelling so far as to render it habitable
before night, and contented ourselves with a hasty
repast of cold ham and biseuits. With our rope and
pully we next raised our hammocks, blankets, and
the large canvass of our tent, with which we roofed
in the whole, securing it to two sides of the platform,
The back of it rested against the huge trunk of the
tree, so that we were only open in front where we
could look out on the sea, and where the landing-
ENCAMPMENT UNDER THE GREAT TREE. 91

place was fixed. Our dormitory already began to
assume a very comfortable appearance. I now
descended; and some portion of the day being still
before us, I employed myself in manufacturing a
table out of the wood which still remained. This I
fixed between the large roots of the tree where we
had slept the night before, and surrounded it with
planks set up on supports, so as to form very con-
venient seats for our dining-table. Meanwhile the
younger boys busied themselves in gathering the
chips, and heaping together such dried sticks as
were at hand, so as to form watch-fires for the night,
while my wife was preparing the supper which we
all stood in need of.

‘Exhausted with a hard day’s work, I threw my-
self at length on the grass, while my wife proceeded
to dish a very comfortable stew, which she had pre-
pared for us from the flamingo shot the previous day.
Its companion seemed already becoming familiarized
with us, while our little monkey leaped from one to
another, mimicking all our gestures, and furnishing
us with an endless source of amusement. The
poultry, we were also glad to see, were still inclined
to stay by us, and the sow, the only wanderer of the
family, returned this evening and saluted us with
its familiar grunt, so much to the satisfaction of my
wife, that she gave it all the unused milk, which it
was then impossible for her to turn to account in
making cheese or butter, for want of the needful
utensils. These, however I promised—not greatly
92 ENCAMPMENT UNDER THE GREAT TREE.

to her satisfaction—to bring with me on my next
voyage from the ship; for she could hardly hear of
my attempting to visit the wreck without a shudder.

The watch-fires were now lighted. Our two dogs
were secured to the roots of the tree as a defence
against intruders, and we prepared to retire for the
night. The labours of the day had been amply suffi-
cient to make us welcome the hour of rest; but the
novelty of the new dwelling, and the anticipation of
security and comfort which it gave rise to, made
every one eager to ascend. The three boys mounted,
one after the other, the moment the word was given.
Their mother tock it with more deliberation, and
cautiously guarding each step, at length landed for
the first time on the aerie dwelling which had ori-
ginated in her own suggestion.. My own ascent was
the last and most difficult; for, in addition to having
little Francis on my back, I had to fling the lower
end of the rope-ladder loose, in order to admit of its
being drawn up after me, so that it swung about
very unpleasantly, greatly adding to the difficulty
of this novel approach to our new dwelling. I got
up, however, safely at last, and, having drawn the
ladder after me, we all felt a sense of security, which
amply repaid us for the labour we had expended. I
deemed it, however, advisable to lay our guns within
reach; and having thus provided against every
danger, we were soon asleep, and did not awake
again till the sun was shining brightly in at the
opening of our tent.
THE FIRST SABBATH. 93

CHAPTER XII.
THE FIRST SABBATH.

Ix the morning all awoke refreshed and invigorated ;
nor was there the slightest dissatisfaction expressed
at the straightened accommodation of the hammocks,
which had formerly proved a source of abundant
complaint. So soon as they were all assembled, I
reminded them that this was the Lord’s day, ap-
pointed for rest, and for the worship of God, and not
the less to be thus observed and enjoyed by us in
our solitary state, than when surrounded by the wor-
shipping assemblies of a Christian land. My wife
was somewhat inclined to repine at the want of a
special church wherein to worship; but [I had little
difficulty in persuading them that God’s own beauti-
ful sky was as fit a roof for his temple as the noblest
domes that man could build, and that our praises
and prayers would not ascend the less acceptably to
him because we worshipped under the shadow of our
great trees.

We descended by means of our ladder; and, while
I proceeded with the boys to serve the animals with
needful food, my wife prepared our breakfast of
biscuits and warm milk. -This done, my wife and
children seated themselves on the grass, while I
oceupied a slight eminence near them; and, having
sung a part of the one hundred and nineteenth psalm,
with which the boys were all familiar, I repeated the
94 THE FIRST SABBATH,

church service for the day, after which I sought ta
interest and instruct them by means of the following
allegory :—

“There was once, in a very fertile country, a
great king, who had two vast possessions, the one
known as the Kingdom of Light and Reality, because
unceasing activity and constant light prevailed
there; the other, situated on its northern frontiers,
in the regions of ice and snow, and of which the
sovereign alone knew the extent. The latter was
called the Kingdom of Indolence and Night, because
everything in it was inactive and dark.

‘‘The inhabitants of the first kingdom lived in the
enjoyment of uninterrupted felicity. The king held
his court at a magnificent city, styled the Heavenly
fest, where thousands of happy attendants waited to
do his bidding, clothed in garments more beautiful
than the rainbow, and purer than the snow. There
were many degrees among them, but all were united
together in the unchanging bonds of affection and
sincerity, and none could conceive of a higher grati-
fication than to be employed in the service of their
royal master.

“Beyond the frontiers of this great kingdom the
sovercign possessed a desert island, which he resolved
to colonize, in pursuance of a plan by which he pro-
posed to transfer his subjects from the desolate
regions of his northern kingdom to a full share in
the privileges of those of the Kingdom of Light. In
pursuance of this plan, the king equipped a fleet to
TUE FIRST SABBATH, 95

transport a body of colonists from the Kingdom of
Night to the Island of Earthly Abode. Once arrived
there, the benevolent sovereign bestowed upon them
everything which he conceived calculated to ensure
their happiness. Admitted, as they were, to the enjoy-
ment of light, and all the natural beauties which the
newly peopled island possessed, the colonists could not
but contrast with joy the change from their former
dull and gloomy abode. He further gave to each of
them the promise that this island was to be only a
probationary stage, and that all who fulfilled their
duties as colonists, cultivated their new lands, and
acted in implicit obedience to the laws he had
appointed, should be admitted to the full privileges
of citizens of the Heavenly Rest, so soon as their
period of probation was expired. In order the more
effectually to carry out his plans, the king appointed
his son to be the governor of the new colony, who
assembled them all, and set forth to them the obli-
gations they, were required to fulfil, as well as the
penalties in case of neglect and disobedience, includ-
ing for the idle, the contemptuous, and the wicked,
the condemnation to slavery and perpetual banish-
ment, to labour in gloomy subterranean mines. The
prince, moreover, told them that ships would be sent
from time to time to bring oft such as merited trans-
lation to the Kingdom of Light. But he added,
‘None need hope to deceive, for a wondrous mirror,
which I possess, will reveal to me all your most
secret actions.’
96 THE FIRST SABBATH.

“ All declared themselves delighted with the
terms on which they were to be governed and
admitted to higher privileges. But no sooner were
they fairly established, than each did as he pleased,
following only the dictates of his own pleasure,
planting wild fruit which pleased the eye, rather
than the useful seeds given them to sow and reap,
and in all things consulting their ease, sloth, or self-
will. Every one possessed a copy of the great
king’s laws, but few read or heeded them, and some
even scoffed at their obligations as things out of
date, and ridiculed the few who aimed at obedience.
The great king, they said, was far too benevolent and
good to take notice of such variations in their pro-
ceedings. He meant them all to be happy, and
would certainly admit them at last to the Kingdom
of Light. As for the gloomy mines and the dark
slavery spoken of, they plainly declared that they
did not believe such things had any existence; they
were quite inconsistent with the character of their
good king, and had been mentioned merely as an
allegory to frighten weak minds into propriety.
Great numbers, accordingly, neglected altogether to
assemble for the consideration of their king’s laws,
which he had ordered to take place on the first day
of every week; and even of those who did attend,
many paid so little heed to the proceedings, that they
might as well have been away. The king, however,
did not forget or change his purpose. From time to
time the Disease fleet appeared off the coast, and the
THE FIRST SABBATH. 97

frigates Consumption, or Fever, or some other of the
king’s ships, would enter the port, and its captain
forthwith issue a summons for some of the colonists
to appear on board. They were, for the most part,
most unwilling to go, though some whose land had
been carefully cultivated, in obedience to the laws,
departed cheerfully with the king’s messengers.
But whether willing or unwilling, all must needs
go. The admiral, whose name was Death, sailed in
a large ship called the Grave, and to this all the
captains of the frigates transferred their passengers.
Sometimes the admiral Death hung out the white
flag of Hope, which shone like burnished silver in the
sun; but at other times, as the frigates approached
to deliver up their passengers, it was drawn down
and replaced by the black flag, called Despair.
When all was ready, the admiral set seil with his
great ship to the king’s own country. So soon as
the colonists arrived, they all were summoned into
the Judgment Hall of the Royal Palace, where the
great king presided, but generally delegated to the
prince the duties of judge. The attendant natives of
the Kingdom of Light, dressed in their most beau-
tiful robes, waited on them, and the prince produced
a magnificently illuminated copy of the laws of the
colony. By this all were tried. No excuse could
be received; but those who had despised the laws,
and refused to believe in the declarations of their
prince, were banished for ever to the mines; while
those who had venerated his statements, and de-
93 THE FIRST SABBATH,

lighted in obeying the laws, were clothed in magni-
ficent garments, and each presented with a charter,
which conferred on them a perpetual right to all the
privileges of the citizens of the Heavenly Rest. They
were then led to the happy abodes already prepared
for them, and joyfully entered on the full realization
of the rewards promised to them by their king.”
Such was the parable by means of which I sought
at once to amuse and to instruct my family. I then
proceeded to question my sons as to the ideas it had
suggested to them; and having thus drawn them into
various remarks on the ingratitude and folly of those
people who despised the laws of so good a king, and
disbelieved alike his promises and his threats, I then
endeavoured to lead them to apply these to a far
more important theme. “ God,” said I, “‘ has placed
us in this world in a probationary stage of being.
He has given us his Word for our guidance and
direction, and requires of us implicit obedience to his
laws. Yet with heaven in promise, and a Saviour
offered for our acceptance, thousands trifle away their
hopes of eternity in idle and vain pleasures, and act
even as if they believed the book of God to be a lie.
Yet it is just such a promise that it contains. The
parable tells us of a certain king, who returned to
ask of his servants an account of their stewardship;
and while he welcomed the good and faithful servants
to enter as sharers into his joy, he commanded the
unprofitable servant to be cast into outer darkness,
where there is wailing and gnashing of teeth.”
THE FIRST SABBATH. 99

T was glad to see the solemn impression produced
on the minds of the boys by this conversation; and
after we had united together in singing a hymn, I
could not avoid expressing to my wife my sorrow
and shame in reflecting, that in all my eagerness to
recover what was valuable from the wreck, I had
never thought of the Bible—the invaluable treasury
of Divine truth, which no other possession could
equal. “ What would you say,” said my wife, smil-
ing, “if that also was to be found in this never-fail-
ing bag of mine?” and, suiting the action to the word,
she put in her hand and drew forth the precious vol-
ume. I received the book with lively emotion, and
opening it, read aloud to my dear wife and children
some of the passages most suited to our peculiar cir-
cumstances. I then handed the book to one of the
boys, and desired them to read a portion successively
aloud; after which I once more engaged in prayer,
and besought a blessing on us all, and on the services
in which we had been employed. I was gratified to
observe the solemn inipression produced on the chil-
dren’s minds by this mode of occupying the morn-
ing of the Sabbath. Throughout the day we abstained
from all unnecessary work; and though the two
youngest boys employed themselves in innocent re-
creations suited to their age, the day passed without
any unbecoming neglect of that reverence for God’s
own Sabbath, which my dear children had been
taught as a duty and a privilege in our native land.

On the following morning I found, from the first

(0) ¢
100 THE FIRST SABBATH.

salutation of the boys, that they had been longing
for a trial of my bow and arrows, though our occu-
pation at the time, and the more serious duties which
had succeeded, prevented them giving expression to
it sooner. I accordingly sat down in the midst of
them, and proceeded to make another bow of the
bamboo, well pleased to encourage them in the use
of an instrument which might hereafter become in-
dispensable to our existence. Our supply of powder,
I reflected, must become exhausted, and might, in-
deed, by some unforeseen accident, be destroyed in
amoment. It was, therefore, of the utmost moment
that we should: be independent of it, and acquire a
means both of supplying our table and defending
ourselves from enemies. ‘“ And why,” thought I,
“since the Caribs are trained in the use of the bow
almost from their infancy, so that they learn to take
unerring aim, even at the smallest birds, may it not
be possible to train my children also to a like skill
and dexterity?”

We had already discovered that the large trees
under which we were sheltered bore a species of fig,
which appeared to attract numerous birds to feed
upon them. While I was busied in the construc-
tion of a set of bows, Ernest employed the one I had
made to such good purpose, that he brought to me
several small birds which he had succeeded in hit-
ting with the arrows. These I recognised as a sort
of wild pigeon, which proved a most acceptable addi-
tion to our table, and indeed a delicacy that, under
THE FIRST SABBATH, 101

any circumstances, would have been most weleome,
My commendations of Ernest’s skill added to tha
anxiety of the boys to be equipped in like manner;
and I aecordingly persevered till I had furnished
Ernest and Jack with a quiver to contain a supply of
arrows, and a good flexible bow. Fritz was the only
one who seemed to watch my progress with indiffer-
ence. He was busied with the preparation of the
skin of his tiger-cat, and as soon as I had set the
rest to work with their bows and arrows, I proceeded
to instruct him in his first attempts as a currier and
tanner. We set to work with sand, rubbing the inner
side so as to get rid of any fat or skin that adhered
to it, after which I directed him to rub it well with
butter, and stretch the skin with his hands so as to
give it flexibility.

Thus employed, the dinner hour drew on befora
we were aware. The boys had already used their
novel weapons with such dexterity that we found a
dish of wild pigeons cooked for us, such as a king
might have envied. I called my wife’s attention to
the fact, that the figs which had attracted them to
the trees would probably prove no less acceptable to
our own poultry, and thus enable her to husband our
supply of grain. Encouraged by the day’s work, I
spent the evening in making a supply of arrows, in
which the boys readily assisted me, and at its close
we ascended to our lofty bedchamber, with tranquil
minds, prepared to enjoy the security and rest which
a busy day had made us the fitter to partake of.
102 TOPOGRAPHY.

CHAPTER XIII.
TOPOGRAPHY.

Ernest and Jack resumed their bows and arrows
on the following morning, and practised the novel
weapons with undiminished ardour, while little
Francis was impatient to be similarly equipped for
the chase. Having finished a bow for him, his next
demand was for a quiver to hold his arrows, I
stripped the bark off one of the smaller branches of
a tree, and bending it round, secured the two edges
together, and having closed it at one end, I suspended
it round his neck, and sent him off, delighted, to try
his skill along with his brothers.

As we were sitting together, after dinner, I said
to the rest, “ What think you of our now giving
a name to our place of abode, as well as to all the
localities we yet know in this new country? It will
be convenient for us in referring to places, and will
also take away from us, in some degree, the feeling
of being occupants of a strange land.” The idea
met with the liveliest approbation from all, and all
were eager to suggest the titles for our new posses-
sions. ‘It will be well,” said I, “to designate each
by the special events associated with it since our
arrival, so as to fix the names more readily in our
memory.” To this all agreed; and having thus
arranged our preliminaries, I called on Fritz to
TOPOGRAPHY. 103

begin by suggesting a name for the bay where we
landed.

“The Bay of Oysters!” said he, “as we found
them there in such abundance.’ ‘“ By no means,”
said Jack, “ Lobster Bay is a much more appropriate
title, since it was there that one of them caught me
hy the leg.” Notwithstanding, however, the import-
ance which Jack was inclined to attach to his first
adventure, the suggestion of my wife to call it Safety
Bay met with general approbation, and was forth-
with adopted.

“ What shall be the name of the spot where our
first dwelling was reared ?”’ was my next question.
Fritz suggested the name of Tent House. “ Very
good,” said I, “ and the island at the mouth of Safety
Bay?” Shark Island was acknowledged by all as
the fittest name. Flamingo Marsh in like manner
commemorated the spot where we had cut our arrows.
The promontory from whence Fritz and I had looked
in vain for any traces of our comrades was designated
Cape Disappointment. The idea afforded great satis-
faction to all when we had got this length, and each
one vied with the other in suggesting designations
for various localities. Porcupine Plain marked the
level ground between the river and our new dwell-
ing, where Jack had interfered to such good purpose.
The stream itself was called Jackall River, and even
our bridge must needs have the title of Family Bridge.
Our new habitation gave us the greatest trouble.
Ernest would have it styled Tree Castle, Jack sug-
104 TOPOGRAPHY.

gested Fig Town, Fritz proposed Eagle’s Nest, in
lieu of which we at length substituted the less aspir-
ing designation of Falcon’s Nest, and on the rivulet
which ran by our new dwelling towards Jackall
River, we conferred that of Falcon’s Stream; thus
completing for the present the geographical nomen-
clature of our little kingdom.

When the heat of the day was over, I proposed
that we should for once have a ramble together.
Fritz had resumed, with renewed zeal, the completion
of his skin, while Jack was busied with that of the
porcupine, constructing of it a species of defensive
armour for Turk, well calculated to protect him
against such fierce assailants as the jackalls. My pro-
position was immediately welcomed with delight. All
threw down their work and made ready to join me.
But as in our present state it was desirable to combine
utility with pastime, it was decided to go to Tent
House to renew our supplies of ammunition and pro-
visions, and, if possible, to bring away the geese and
ducks with us to the vicinity of our new dwelling,
where there was a stream abundantly large and other-
wise well-suited to their habits. Fritz had his tiger-
cat skin belt ready; Jack also appeared with a pair
of pistols stuck in his belt; nor did little Francis
forget his bow and arrows, while the others carried
each a gun and game-bag. We chose the road
leading to the rocks higher up the river, in preference
to that by the coast, as it gave us the advantage of
a pleasantly-shaded road, while we would find the
TOPOGRAPHY, 105

bridge an advantage in returning with our supplies,
My wife, instead of a musket, carried a large jar,
which she intended to fill with a supply of butter.
Turk accompanied us, wearing his formidable armour
of porcupine quills; and the monkey having also
joined our cavalcade, leaped on his back as usual;
but the reception he met with there made him speedily
leap to the ground, chattering and grinning with
pain. He soon discovered, however, that Bill was
free from any such source of discomfort, and mount-
ing on his back, converted him into his horse for the
journey.

The banks of the river afforded us a charming
walk. For atime we pursued our route under the
shade of the trees, moving along leisurely to enjoy
it the more. The boys ran about to the right and
left, frequently getting entirely out of sight, until we
got to the end of the wood. Here I thought it pru-
dent to summon them together; but before I had time
to call them, the whole appeared running towards me
at their utmost speed. Ernest was the foremost,
and as soon as he recovered his breath, he presented
me with three little apples of a green colour, exclaim-
ing at the same time, exultingly, “‘ Potatoes! papa,
we have found potatoes!” The other boys followed,
equally eager to announce their discovery. I was
slow to believe in the certainty of so providential a
discovery, but my wife said at once, “Come, let us
not waste time discussing the probability of it, when
we can ascertain at once if it be true.” We hastened
106 TOPOGRAPHY.

immediately to the spot, and saw, with a degree of
joy which it is difficult fully to express, a large area
covered with plants which we could no longer doubt
were those of the potato. “Well,” said Jack, “ if
Ernest was the first to discover the plants, I shall be
before him in supplying you with potatoes;”’ and he
accordingly set to work with such zeal, that we had
soon an excellent bagful of ripe potatoes, with which
we proceeded to Tent House.

On our way we were cheered by lively conversa-
tion and the constant discovery of novel or interesting
objects. We detected various thorn-leaved plants,
and a great variety of rare grasses. Pine apples
also grew in abundance, and among the rich cactus
plants and the prickly aloes I was gratified to dis-
cover what I believed to be the Karata, the rich
blossom of which attracted our attention. It is a
plant with bright red flowers, the leaves of which
occupy an important place among the means employed
by savage tribes for the cure of hurts and wounds.
Thread also is made from its filaments, and the pith
supplies an excellent tinder. The latter seemed to
the boys by far the most valuable discovery, and
indeed of much more importance than that of the
potatoes. “The plant will at least prove a very
useful one,” said I, “since it will furnish your
mother with the means of supplying her bag anew
with one needful portion of its contents when the
present store is exhausted.” My wife was greatly
delighted with the discovery. She had already, she
TOPOGRAPHY, 107

said, felt some anxiety about the exhaustion of her
useful little store, which, notwithstanding all her
care, she could not hope would last long; and she
told the boys that she valued this unfailing source for
the supply of so useful an article more than the most
valued luxuries they could find for the table. “ But,”
said she, “TI fear it will prove a very difficult opera-
tion to extract thread from this prickly leaf.’ “Not
at all,” said I, “we have nothing to do but to dry
the leaf, either in the sun, or, more rapidly, before
the fire. We shall then be able easily to separate
the fibres from their covering.” Pleased with my
description of so simple a process, my wife drew the
attention of the boys to the value of reading and
acquiring information of every kind, no knowledge
being so entirely apart from our probable necessities
but that it may at some period prove of value.
Ernest remarked that this single plant might indeed
be of value; “but what possible use,”’ said he, ‘ can
these prickly shrubs and plants be that grow in such
profusion around us?” “Of much,” said I. “ Many
of these furnish the chief medicines employed in
Europe. The aloe, for example, is used to a great
extent in this way, while even this insect,” said I,
pointing to a little scarlet creeper feeding on one of
the leaves of an Indian fig, which Jack had wounded
his hand in hastily snatching from the tree, “is the
cochineal, an object of commercial importance in
Europe. They are collected in great quantities, dried
and sent to Europe as a valuable scarlet dye.’
108 TOPOGRAPHY,

Thus conversing pleasantly together, we arrived
at the point on Jackall River where the rocks ad-
mitted of its being crossed, and were soon at Tent
House, which we had the satisfaction of finding in
the same state as we had left it. We set to work
immediately to collect the needful provisions. I
opened the butter-cask, and set my wife and little
Francis to fill the can. Fritz collected the needful
supply of powder and shot, while Ernest and Jack
set off to capture the geese and ducks. The latter,
however, proved no easy matter, and might perhaps
have baffled us all, had not Ernest hit on the droll
expedient of fishing for them with bait and line!
Tying a bit of cheese to a long string, he threw it
into the water, where it floated, and was greedily
gobbled up by the voracious birds. As he retained a
hold of the other end of the line, he was thus able to
draw them all successively to land; and after securing
their legs and wings, he cut off the string close to
the bill, leaving them to digest the remainder with
the cheese. We presented a somewhat grotesque
cavalcade on our return, The potato bags were laid
across the backs of the two dogs, and the geese and
ducks distributed among the party. They proved
a very noisy as well as burdensome load, but we
reached our dwelling under the great trees at last,
wearied indeed, but still in good humour, and well
pleased with the fruits of our day’s ramble. Our
potatoes, along with a cup of milk, supplied us with
a new and very acceptable supper, and we once more
THE SLEDGE. 109

retired to rest and slept soundly under the roof of our
new dwelling.

CHAPTER XIV.
THE SLEDGE.

I nap remarked, as we came along the shore the
previous eyening, among various other things cast
up by the waves, different pieces of wood, which
appeared to me well suited for making a sledge on
which to bring to Falcon’s Nest, the cask of butter,
and other things we were in need of. I accordingly
formed the resolution of proceeding in search of them
the following morning before any of the family
should be awake, except Ernest, whom I selected
professedly as a mark of special favour, but in reality
from the desire of stimulating him to greater indus-
try by such incitement, as he displayed a degree of
indolence and somewhat selfish care for his own com-
fort and convenience, manifested by none of the other
boys. I also felt some satisfaction in leaving Fritz
behind me at that early hour, from his ability to
protect the rest in case of any unforeseen danger
arising.

At the appointed hour I awoke Ernest, and we
cautiously descended, leaving the others sound
asleep. I untied the ass, and having put his harness
on, I attached it to a strong forked bough of a tree
110 THE SLEDGE.

which I had selected for the purpose, and we set
off together towards the shore. There we readily
selected the requisite pieces of wood, cutting such of
them as were of unmanageable length by means of
the saw which I had brought with me for that
purpose. These we laid across the bough to which
the ass was harnessed, placing on the top of them a
sailor’s chest which we found half-buried in the sand,
and then set out on our return. Ernest led the ass,
which drew its burden with patient perseverance,
while I followed, helping it from time to time by
means of a long pole which I used as a lever when
any obstacle impeded its progress. My wife, who
had felt some anxiety at our absence, was well
pleased to see us return, and all were curious to ascer-
tain what the box contained. JI opened it and found
only some clothes and linen wet with sea water, but
still of value to us, as our supplies in this respect
were extremely limited. In my absence the boys
had busied themselves shooting the wild pigeons,
and already so greatly reduced the supply of powder
and shot brought from Tent House on the previous
day, that I deemed it necessary to reprove them for
such extravagance, and showed them how to construct
snares with the strong thread of the karata leaves so
as to procure a supply of game independent of the
ammunition, which we had no means of replacing
when our present store was exhausted. This novel
task had great attractions for the boys, and I set
Jack to work, with little Francis for his assistant,
THE SLEDGE. 111

who greatly amused us by looking with childish
innocence into my face as he asked me if, when this
was done, his brother might then assist him in sowing
some of the gunpowder, that they might have plenty
to shoot with next year? I took Fritz and Ernest
to assist me in my sledge-building, and, with their
aid, made rapid progress. While thus busily engaged,
we were interrupted by a boisterous cackling and
disturbance among the poultry, the occasion of which
was at length detected by Ernest, who observed the
monkey making for a hole among the roots of the
tree into which he had already stored the spoils
acquired by repeated robberies of the hens’ nests.
Snip, as the boys now called him, was ordered to
be tied up every morning till the eggs were col-
lected, and my wife derived great pleasure from
the discovery, anticipating the time when she might
hope to see in her poultry yard a young brood of
chickens.

On returning to dinner, we learned from Jack
that he had been up in the tree during the forenoon
fastening his snares, and had discovered that the
pigeons were also building their nests. This fur-
nished me with an additional reason for forbidding all
firing in future in the trees, and I further warned the
boys to watch lest any of our own pigeons should get
entangled in the snares.

By persevering application to our task, we con-
trived to finish a very practicable sledge. Two
curved pieces of wood, selected for the purpose,
112 THE SLEDGE.

formed the main beams, projecting upwards both
behind and before, so as to retain the load in its
place. On these, planks were nailed, and two ropes
being fastened in front, in place of trams, the useful
conveyance was complete. The sight of it afforded
my wife great delight, and she was impatient that I
should set out for Tent House without delay. She
had formed the, project of preserving the wild pigeons
shot by the boys, as a provision for the period of the
year which we necessarily looked forward to when
such supplies would fail us, and required the cask of
butter, as well as other stores, for the purpose. To
this I had no objections; and, accordingly, leaving
Fritz in charge of the family, I once more selected
Ernest as my companion, and, yoking the ass and
cow to the sledge, we set off to our store-house.
When we were departing, Fritz presented to his
brother and myself an ingeniously constructed knife-
case, made of his tiger-cat skin, formed to contain a
knife, fork, and spoon, and with belt and loop, into
which a small hatchet could be inserted. Thus
equipped, and with Bill as our guard, we set off along
the shore, and soon crossed by Family Bridge to the
store-house. After loosing the animals from their
harness, we proceeded to load our sledge with the
cask of butter, the cheese, and the biscuits, and also
took with us the remainder of our powder and shot,
as well as various useful utensils. We were so
completely engrossed by our work, we did not per-
ceive, till it was finished, that the animals had strayed
THE SLEDGE. 113

across the bridge, attracted by the abundance of fine
grass on the other side of the river, and were now
out of sight. I immediately despatched Ernest with
Bill to bring them back; and as I had no doubt of
his speedy success, I employed the interval in re-
freshing myself with a bath in the sea. Wandering
towards the further extremity of Safety Bay, I
discovered a marsh in which a quantity of fine bul-
rushes were growing, and occupied myself in cutting
them. When Ernest had brought back our wanderers,
he ingeniously removed some of the planks of the
bridge, and by this simple means effectually prevented
their again straying beyond our reach. I desired
him also to fill a small bag with the salt which he
had formerly noticed in the crevices of the rocks.
While I was waiting in expectation of his return, I
heard him calling loudly, “ Papa! papa! a fish—a
huge fish—I cannot hold it!” I ran immediately to
his aid, and found him hauling at a line, to which an
enormous fish was attached. I ran immediately to
his aid, and seizing the fishing-line which he had
employed to such good purpose, I let it out sufficiently
to allow the fish a little play; and thus bringing it
round to a long shallow, where it could no longer
struggle with the same effect, we soon landed our
prize. I found that we had captured a fish weighing
not less than fifteen pounds, the sight of which, I
felt assured, would be most acceptable to my provi-
dent housekeeper. Ernest had formerly observed
that the fish frequented this part of the coast, and
114 THE SLEDGE.

accordingly brought his line with him. He had
secured several small fish in the shallow pools, when
it occurred to him to bait his hook with one of those
which appeared to him to make for the shallow water
to escape from their enemies. The success of his
experiment proved how well he had reasoned, and
we were both well pleased to be able to return with
such unexpected additions to our stores. These we
accordingly packed up and deposited among the load
already placed on the sledge, and harnessing the ass
and cow to it, we set off on our return home.

On our road home, Bill, who was scouring about
as usual among the Jong grass, suddenly sprung off,
apparently in pursuit of some game which he had
started, and we presently saw a singular animal,
which seemed to leap rather than run. As Bill
continued the chase, I watched a favourable oppor-
tunity for a shot, and firing with too great precipi-
taney, missed it; but Ernest, who was behind me,
took better aim, and killed it. We ran immediately
to the spot, and found one of the most singular
animals which it is possible to imagine. It was
about the size of a sheep, with a tail like a tiger; its
head and skin resembled those of a mouse; its fore
legs were like those of a squirrel; while its hind
legs seemed disproportionately large, like a pair of
great stilts. Ernest was greatly delighted at his
success, and we both examined our singular prize
with much interest. I was at a loss at first to con-
ceive what it could possibly be; but Ernest began
THE SLEDGE. 114

recalling his reminiscences in natural history, and it
presently occurred to me that the strange animal we
had secured could be none other than the kangaroo,
first discovered in New Holland by Captain Cook.
Ernest was anxious to preserve the skin unhurt, so
I ticd the four feet together, and, passing a stick
through between them, we carried it in this manner
to the sledge. It formed a weighty addition to the
load, but by proceeding slowly, and rendering assist-
ance when any unusual impediment occurred, we
got along without much difficulty, and once more
reached Falcon’s Nest ata somewhat late hour. We
had heard the voices of the boys some time before
we got sight of them; but they were not long of
surrounding us, and inquiring after our success.
The fish was received by my dear wife with much
satisfaction. The butter, cheese, and biscuits were
no less acceptable; but the grand object of curiosity
was the. kangaroo. I had to tell all I could about
its strange habits, and peculiar mode of progression,
amid the shouts of cager curiosity and delight of
Jack and little Francis. Fritz was quieter, and
could not, indeed, altogether conceal a degree of
disappointment and jealousy at his brother's fortunate
skill as a sportsman. I checked this, however, by
a gentle rebuke, and his better feelings speedily
triumphed. ‘“ He hoped, however,” he said, “ that I
would allow him to accompany me in future excur-
sions, for Falcon’s Nest was dull and wearisome, with
nothing but some pigeons and poultry moving about
@0) 8
116 NEW SUPPLIES FROM THE WRECK.

to relieve the tedium of unoccupied time.” I pro-
mised him he should not always be left to watch,
though, at the same time, I reminded him how much
more honourable it was, as well as manly, to remain
behind as the protector of his mother and brothers,
than to wander forth on the look-out for adventures
merely for his own gratification. “ But,” said J,
“to-morrow you shall be my companion, when I
propose another voyage to the wreck.”

Our ordinary occupations terminated the labours
of the day. I fed the tired animals, adding to their
ordinary repast a supply of salt, which made them
eat with additional relish, We then prepared and
hung up the kangaroo, designing to salt and smoke
such parts of it as we could not immediately consume.
Our supper done, we concluded the day with our
wonted services, and then thankfully withdrew to our
hammocks, and were speedily asleep.

CHAPTER XV.

NEW SUPPLIES FROM THE WRECK.

At cock-crow I quitted my bed, and descended the
ladder just in time to rescue our kangaroo from the
dogs. They had regaled themselves with the entrails
the night before, and, well pleased with their first
taste, had apparently agreed together to breakfast on
the remainder. They had succcedcd in tearing off
NEW SUPPLIES FROM THE WRECK. 117

the head, which hung within their reach, and wera
discussing it, not without some of the unfriendly
indications wont to accompany such partnerships.
As we could not afford to have our watchmen turn
robbers on our hands, I seized a stout cane and gave
both the dogs so sound a beating that the noise they
made awoke my wife, and brought her down to ascer-
tain the cause.

Without loss of time I commenced to skin the
kangaroo, and cut it up for our larder. This work
employed me so long, that all the family were down
and seated at the breakfast table before I could get
myself washed and in a fit state to join them. On
calling upon Fritz to make ready for our departure,
I observed that Ernest and Jack had already disap-
peared, no one knew whither. My wife conjectured
that they had gone to dig up a fresh supply of
potatoes, an idea which somewhat relieved my mind.
I charged her, however, to reprimand them on their
return for going off on any such adventure without
our leave. We took Turk along with us, leaving
Bill as usual for the protection of the dwelling. Our
parting with my dear wife was not without tears, as
neither arguments of necessity, nor of the safety
which experience assured us of, had much influence
in allaying her dread of the sea.

We had proceeded without interruption almost to
Jackall River, when all at once, to our great astonish-
ment, Ernest and Jack leaped out of a thicket, with
a shout of delight, and announced their intention of
118 NEW SUPPLIES FROM THE WRECK.

accompanying us, which they conceived they had
secured by this stratagem. Their joy was so great
that I could not express all the disapprobation I had
intended. J reproved them, however, and ordered
their immediate return home. I was glad of the
opportunity this gave me of sending back a message,
and I accordingly charged them to tell their mother
not to be uneasy if we did not return till the follow-
ing day; a thing I had not had the courage to tell
her at our parting. The boys looked sadly morti-
fied and disappointed at their dismissal, but I begged
of them to consider the uneasiness that their mother
must experience if they did not appear at the
dinner hour; and the better to secure their attention
to this, I begged Fritz to give his silver watch to
Ernest, as I knew we could replace it when we
reached the ship. The novelty of the watch served
to reconcile the boys in some degree to their
disappointment, and we proceeded towards the bay.
We lost no time in embarking, and, with the help
of the current. were soon alongside the wreck.

Our first work when on board was to look out
suitable materials for the construction of a raft, as
our boat was much too small for the cargo we had
in view. We soon found a number of casks which
seemed suited for our purpose. Our next object
was to collect the requisite planks, cords, and nails,
and with these we succeeded in constructing a very
efficient and capacious raft. Having secured this,
we next constructed a parapet all round it; and by


A BRIGANO-LIKE DECORATION.
NEW SUPPLIES FROM THE WRECK. 119



this means were in possession of a transport vessel
capable of effecting in a single voyage more than
we could have hoped to do in many successive trips
with our first boat. We worked at our raft almost
without intermission, contenting ourselves with a
hasty meal on some provisions we had put into our
bags; but by the time it was finished the day was
well-nigh gone, and we were glad to retire to rest in
the captain’s cabin, where our fatigue soon put an
end to all prudent resolves as to watching alternately
in case of danger, and we both slept soundly till
broad day-light.

Tlaving returned grateful thanks to God for his
care over us during the night, we set actively to work
to complete our purpose. We began by completely
stripping the cabin, taking away even the doors and
windows. ‘Two of the officers’ chests proved a great
prize, but that of the carpenter afforded us the
greatest satisfaction. One case belonging to the
captain, on being opened, was found to contain a
valuable assortment of jewellery, snuff-boxes, and
money; but we were much better pleased to discover
a package enclosing a variety of plants of European
fruit-trees, carefully packed in moss. Among these
I recognised, to my great delight, the pear, the apple,
the peach, the chestnut, the apricot, the plum, and
also some slips of the vine. I looked upon them as
old friends, familiar to me in my dear native land,
and rejoiced in the prospect of being able to rear
them in this strange country, and around our new
120 NEW SUPPLIES FROM THE WRECK.

home. But the treasures on board were of the most
valuable description, and still so abundant that we
were embarrassed in making our selection. We put
on our raft a quantity of iron bars, some cart-wheels,
ploughshares, grinding-stones, a hand-mill, a com-
plete set of farriers’ implements, a large supply of
iron and copper wire, sacks full of maize and other
grains, with many other articles invaluable to us,
and which had indeed been expressly provided for
founding a European colony in the Southern Ocean.
We found also a saw-mill, with all the pieces num-
bered so as to be put readily together.

At length our selection was finished, and our raft
loaded with as much as could safely be laid on it.
When we were leaving, I threw on the top a large
fishing-net, and took along with me the compass of
the ship, while Fritz laid alongside of him in the
boat a couple of harpoons which he had found, along
with a coil of rope such as is used in the whale-
fishery. We now attached the raft securely to our
boat, and after steering it clear of the wreck, we
hoisted the sail and made for the shore. The wind
was favourable and the sea calm, so that we advanced
at a good rate. As we drew near the shore, Fritz
observed a singular animal moving at a little dis-
tance, and asked me to steer in that direction, that
he might see what it was. I soon recognised it to
be a large tortoise, floating asleep in the sun, and
complied with his request; but the next instant I
felt as if the boat had received a sudden shock,
NEW SUPPLIES FROM THE WRECK. 12]

which was followed by its apparently receiving a
considerable impulse. ‘“ What is the matter?” I
exclaimed, in considerable trepidation; but the only
answer I got was, “I have him! I have hit him!
Ife will not escape us.’ I perceived that he had
. struck the animal with the harpoon in the neck, and
its violent exertions to escape, while restrained by
the line which Fritz had secured to the boat, occa-
sioned the motions which had alarmed me. I pulled
down the sail immediately, and scrambled over to
the bow of our boat, with the intention of cutting
the line. But I found that Fritz had already his
hatchet in hand, and he entreated me not to sacrifice
the harpoon and line as well as his prize, promising
to cut the line himself on the slightest appearance
of danger. I yielded with some reluctance to his
request, and returned to the helm. As we drew
nearer the shore, the tortoise made off towards the
right, dragging us towards the beach near Faleon’s
Nest; but on approaching this, our conductor once
more made for the sea. The wind being now strongly
blowing from the sea, I hoisted the sail, so that we
were able, by its means, to drag the exhausted
animal after us till the water was sufficiently shallow
to admit of my wading, when I got out and decapi-
tated it with my axe.

Fritz set up a shout of triumph, and fired off his
gun to announce our arrival, after which he leaped
into the water, and waded ashore with the head of
the tortoise mounted as a trophy on the end of his
122 NEW SUPPLIES FROM THE WRECK.

gun. My wife gently reproached us for having left
her and the children alone during the night, and
now we were overwhelmed with questions as to our
success. I desired my wife to go with the two
youngest boys, and yoke the sledge without delay,
so as to get some portion of our precious cargo out
of the reach of danger. In the interval, the tide,
which was still rising} carried the raft further up the
beach, and we employed ourselves in securing it, so
that it should not be carried away with the ebb-tide.
When my wife returned with the sledge, we placed
the turtle upon it, which did not weigh less than
three hundrediveight, and required our united efforts
to move it. We added some objects of light weight,
including the mattresses which we had brought
ashore, and then joyfully set off for Falcon’s Nest.

Fritz having told his brothers about the boxes of
jewellery and trinkets we had left behind us, all
were eager to specify some object of special favour,
while little Francis showed them the wisdom cf
their choice by begging that he might have some of
the money we had seen. ‘“ And what would you do
with it when you had got it?” said I. ‘O, papa!”
said he, “I would buy some nice sweet cakes, for
the biscuits we have are so hard.” We laughed
heartily.at the innocent simplicity of the little fellow,
in which he joined as freely as the rest.

So scon as we arrived at Faleon’s Nest, my first
care was to remove the turtle from its shell. We
turned it over on its back, and with my axe I
NEW SUPPLIES FROM TITE WRECE. 123

severed the nearly flat lower shell from the large
convex upper one, and removing enough of the deli-
eate and excellent flesh to serve for our dinner, I
covered up the remainder again in its shell. While
my wife undertook to prepare the delicacy we had
thus unexpectedly provided for the table, we pro-
ceeded to salt the remainder, handing over the offal
to the dogs, who had patiently watched our proceed-
ings in expectation of a share. A clamorous dis-
cussion now arose among the boys for possession of
the shell, each having a project of his own for its
final destination; but I settled the dispute by award-
ing it to Fritz, as his by right of conquest. Ile
immediately declared his intention of converting it
into a bason or tub, which might be permanently
fixed at the bank of the rivulet, where it would at
all times be convenient for his mother’s use. “ That
is what I call a generous plan, which has the good
of all in view.’ It was therefore resolved forthwith
to have the shell fixed in its place, so soon as we
could bring a supply of strong clay from a spot
indicated by Jack, not far from our potato-field.

T commended Jack for having thus used his eyes
for the general behoof. ‘ And I, too, have made a
discovery,” said Ernest. “Look at those white
roots, something like the horse-radish. The plant
they belong to is a large bush, and they must be a
safe food, for I observed the sow eating them with
great relish.” On examining the root, I had little
doubt that we owed to Erncst a valuable addition to
124 NEW SUPPLIES FROM THE WRECK.

our food, since it appeared to be that from which the
West Indians make their cassava cake, which would
furnish us with a very palatable and nutritious sub-
stitute for bread, since it is from this that the well-
known powder tapioca is made.

We had completed the unloading of our sledge,
and I now set off, along with the three elder boys,
to bring home a second portion of our freight before
night set in, while Francis stayed behind with his
mother, who had our supper to prepare. When we
reached the shore, we loaded our sledge with as
much as the two beasts could draw, selecting from
the various stores.of our raft two chests containing
our own clothes and other personal supplies, also
the hand-mill, which Ernest’s discovery of the
manioc, or cassava root, now rendered valuable.
We also took the cart-wheels, the chest of tools, and
a few other lighter but equally valuable stores for
which we could find room. Thus loaded, we reached
Falcon’s Nest in time for supper. ‘“ You must be
greatly fatigued after the day’s labour,” said my
wife, addressing me with a pleasant smile, “but I
think I can produce a restorative that will be accept-
able to you;” and taking one of our cocoa-nut cups,
she went to a recess formed by the roots of the tees,
and filled it from a small cask with excellent Canary.
She had observed the cask, it seemed, during my
absence on the previous day, lying within tide-mark
on the shore, and with the help of Ernest had got it
on the sledge, and brought it home as an agreeable
CASSAVA BREAD. 125

surprise to me. I gave a small glass of it to each
of the boys, and we felt so much invigorated thereby,
that we set to, and completed our day’s work before
sitting down to supper. With the help of our block
and tackle, we hoisted up the mattresses and blankets
to our lofty bed-chamber; and having ascended to
arrange them, they appeared to me so inviting, that
I was half inclined to remain. A tempting supper,
however, awaited us below; and having partaken
of the repast which my wife had provided for us,
and anew commended ourselves to the protection of
Heaven, we withdrew to the enjoyment of the well-
earned sweets of repose.

CHAPTER XVI.
CASSAVA BREAD.

Tue morning found all the family asleep except
myself, some little anxiety about the remaining con-
tents of the raft having rendered my repose some-
what more broken. I descended without disturbing
any of them, and found our whole live stock already
in motion, except the poor ass, on whom no incon-
siderable portion of the previous day’s labour had
fallen. I was forced, however, to disturb him; and
yoking him to the sledge, I set off to the shore,
accompanied by the dogs, and discovered, to my
great satisfaction, that our precautions had been
126 CASSAVA BREAD.

completely successful in preventing the raft or boat
from breaking loose, though the rising of the tide
had somewhat changed their position. I lost no
time in transferring a moderate load to the sledge,
and returned with it to Faleon’s Nest; but though the
sun was now high in the heavens, our new mattresses
had. proved so agreeable, that not one of the family
was awake. They arose at my call, somewhat
ashamed of their sloth, and after a hasty breakfast,
we all proceeded to the shore, in order to complete
the unlading of the boat and raft, as I was desirous
of taking advantage of the next tide to remove them
to Safety Bay. We were all so much on the alert,
that we were not long in carrying two successive
loads to our new settlement; and having despatched
my wife, along with Ernest and Francis, with the
last, I embarked as soon as the tide was high enough
to float the raft. I had arranged to take Fritz along
with me, and seeing Jack linger behind, with un-
mistakeable anxiety to join us, I permitted him also
to get on board, as I had resolved on another voyage
to the wreck before laying up our transports in
Safety Bay, being tempted thereto by the fresh sea-
breeze, which promised an easy return with a new
freight. Before, however, we reached the ship, the
day was so far advanced that I dreaded our being
overtaken by the land-breeze which sets in in the
evening, and so being compelled to pass the night
en board, which could not fail to occasion my wife
much anxicty and alarm. The boys ran about the
CASSAVA BREAD, 127

vesscl, bringing out objects of various kinds which
struck their fancies, and Jack soon mounted the
deck with a wheelbarrow he had got hold of, which
would do famously, he said, for the visits to our
potato-field. /

Fritz announced a still more important discovery.
He had found -between-decks the pieces of a small
pinnace, all marked for putting together, and with
complete furnishings, including even two guns.
Gratified as I was by this discovery, I saw that it
was impossible to remove it at present. I urged on
the boys the necessity of not losing a moment, and
we accordingly got hastily on board our transports
a copper boiler, some plates of iron and kitchen
utensils, two tobacco-graters, a barrel of powder, and
some flints. Jack also insisted on having his wheel-
barrow on board, and with his brother’s assistance
I got up two others from the hold, considering them
objects calculated to be of great use to us. We also
added to our cargo some rope and sails that were
lying at hand, and hastily getting on board, we
hoisted sail and made for the land.

When we approached the shore, we perceived with
astonishment a troop of strange little figures ranged
in a row, and apparently regarding us attentively.
They seemed to be little men in black and white
dresses, and wearing enormous cravats. “ Truly,”
T exclaimed in astonishment, “I verily believe that
our habitation is in a land of pigmies, and that they
are willing to be on friendly terms with us!” As
128 CASSAVA BREAD.

we discussed the probable nature of this strange
array, we were drawing every moment nearer the
beach, and I speedily perceived that the little man-
nikins were none other than a group of penguins, of
which Ernest had killed one soon after our first
landing. I steered gently towards the land, so as
not to disturb them; but before I could prevent it,
Jack had leaped out, and wading ashore, began to
lay about him with a stick right and left, so that he
had knocked-down some half-dozen of the awkward
birds before they could escape into the water. So
soon as we had moored the boat, I reproved Jack
for his imprudent’ rashness, and warned him of the
cruelty of killing animals which could be of little
use to us, and were in no degree objects of fear.

The sun was already low on the horizon; so, after
securing our raft and boat, we got out the three
wheel-barrows, into which we put the most portable
objects we had brought, not forgetting the tobacco-
graters and iron plates, which formed a part of my
own load. The dogs were the first to discover our
approach, and we were soon surrounded, and each of
our loads subjected to criticism. My tobacco-graters
excited some merriment; and Jack, who had brought
some of the penguins in his wheel-barrow, got laughed
at for his pains. I conceived, however, that they
might prove a useful addition to our poultry-yard,
and ordered him to secure each of them by the leg to
that of one of the geese. This was not effected with-
out considerable clamour. My wife had not been
CASSAVA BREAD. 129

idle in our absence, as appeared from a large supply
of potatoes and cassava root, which had been laid in
with the help of Ernest and Francis. As we sat at
supper I recounted our proceedings at the wreck, and
failed not to describe the discovery of the pinnace.
My wife was by no means inclined to share in my
satisfaction at the latter discovery, as she could not
overcome her repugnance to the sea; but she acknow-
ledged that the possession of such a vessel as we
described would help to lessen her dread on our
behalf. ,

As we withdrew for the night, I charged the boys
to make their appearance in good time in the morn-
ing, as I had something entirely new in view, to
accomplish which their assistance would be needed.
In answer to their queries I refused all further expla-
nation till the following morning. This accordingly
had the desired effect, and they were all on the alert
as soon as myself, and curious to know what their
new employment was to be. So soon as I had them
all gathered around me, I proceeded to explain to
them the virtues of the manioc root. I then called
for the iron plates and the tobaceo-graters, which I
had brought from the wreck the previous evening;
and while Ernest was sent for the roots, I begged
my wife to make me two bags of stout canvass.
“ Our new employment, my boys,” said I, “is to be
that of the miller and baker.” My wife expressed
considerable surprise at my promise to supply bread
without either wheat or flour, and I noticed, before
130 CASSAVA BREAD.

she took the bags in hand, she set a good potful of
potatces on the fire, which was regarded as an omen
that she had no great faith in my skill as a baker.
I now spread a piece of coarse linen on the ground,
and set each of the boys to work with a grater to rub
down the manioc roots, which had been carefully
washed, so that ina short time we had a heap of
powdered or grated root. In its moist state it did
not look’ very promising, and, accordingly, furnished
the subject of some good-humoured jests among the
boys, who, while enjoying the novel work of grating
it, seemed to anticipate no great treat from a break-
fast roll of scraped white carrots, as they called them.

I made no attempt to check their humour; but, at
the same time, I informed them that this root, which
they were now laughing at, forms one of the most
highly esteemed and nourishing articles of diet, and
supplies the chief food of a large portion of the natives
of South America.

When a sufficient quantity of the root had been
grated, I filled the two bags with the powder, and
then had the ends stoutly sewed up. My object was
now to contrive a press by means of which to extract
the juice, which is poisonous. For this purpose I
laid them both on our table, and, placing planks
above them, I then took a long oaken beam, and
securing one end of it to a root of the tree, we
employed our united efforts in drawing down the
opposite end till it could be brought no further. To
this we now suspended large stones, and all the
CASSAVA BREAD. 131

weightiest objects we could get hold of. The device
entirely succeeded. The juice was forced out of the
compressed root, and flowed from the table to the
ground. Gradually the weights brought the beam
lower down, as the bulk diminished from the loss of
moisture, till at length there seemed no further sap
flowing. I then removed the weights, and, opening
one of the bags, its contents, which were still a little
moist, presented somewhat the appearance of very
coarse damp flour. “It wants very little,” I said,
“to complete our success.” I then took one of the
iron plates I had brought from the ship, which was
circular and slightly concave in the centre, and
propping it up on stones over the fire, I kneaded a
sufficient quantity of it together, adding a little salt
to it, and spread it out on the iron plate. It soon
began to give off its remaining moisture, and by the
time it was beginning to brown on the under side I
turned it so as to have it equally fired.

The smell of my first cake was now so savoury
that the boys were eager to partake of it; but I was
too well aware of the danger incurred by rashly par-
taking of untried food, especially from the known
poisonous nature of the sap. I decided, therefore,
that we should give the first taste of our new bread
to the monkey, and to one or two of the hens. So
soon, therefore, as it was sufficiently cold, I gave
some of the cake to two hens, which I placed apart,
and also presented a piece of it to the ape, who

munched it up with such great relish as to excite
(30) 9
132 CASSAVA BREAD,

some envy in the boys, who were denied a share in
the treat. I felt, however, that we could not exercise
too great caution, and we accordingly proceeded to
regale ourselves on the potatoes. During our repast
I made use of their present self-denial to warn them
against imprudently partaking of strange fruits or
vegetables they might see, however tempting, and
described to them some of the poisonous berries, and
other fruits of tropical climates which are most attrac-
tive to the eye.

When our homely repast was false, we hastened
to visit the fowls and the ape, all which seemed to
have heartily relished their cake. ‘To work,” I
eried to the boys; “to work immediately. Let us
not lose a moment, and we shall soon taste the fruits
of our morning’s labours.” They kindled the fire
anew, while I undid the bag and removed the flour.
So soon as the plate was heated, I strewed a portion
of cassava flour upon it, and, after leaving it for a
little till it was quite dry, I mixed it up with milk,
and distributed about a cocoa-nut cupful to each. I
next took some of what I had reserved for myself,
and, pouring it out like a pancake, I watched it till
it began to brown, and then turned it with a fork.
The boys followed my example, and were soon impa-
tiently nibbling at their half-fired cakes. We placed
the whole, when ready, in-a dish, where they looked
like very nicely prepared yellow biscuits. My wife
was quite delighted at the sight of them, and forth-
with produced for each a cup of milk, with which we
THE FINNACE, 133

ate them, and all agreed that they furnished a most
acceptable treat. The pigeons and fowls, as well as
the ape, came in for a share of this our first baking ;
and we then set vigorously to work, with the sledge
and our new wheel-barrows, to remove the remainder
of our last freight.

CHAPTER XVI.
THE PINNACE,

My mind was now oceupied with one idea, which I
could not dismiss. This was a return to the wreck
to obtain possession of the pinnace, which I felt to
be in danger of being engulfed on the first change of
wind. But it was necessary, for effecting my pur-
pose, that I should have all the aid I could command,
and I therefore proposed that the three elder boys
should accompany me. This was not agreed to by
my wife without considerable hesitation, and only on
the condition that we should return the same day.
The boys were delighted with the project, and Ernest
especially, who had not yet visited the wreck. To
secure against all ordinary risk, each of us was pro-
vided with a cork jacket, and, having laid in provi-
sions for the day, we set sail in ovr tub-boat, with
the raft in tow, and reached the ship in due time.
The boys set te work with great zeal to load both
the boat and raft with every portable thing they
134 THE PINNACE.

could lay hands on; but the great matter occupying
my mind was the pinnace, which I now began to
fear, from the bulk of its materials, and the inacces-
sible part of the vessel where it was stowed away,
must entirely baffle us. The boys, however, had no
such fear. Having completed their loading, they
now joined me, and forthwith set to work with
hatchets and crowbars to break up the deck so as to
get it out. But the ship was stoutly built, large
timbers impeded our efforts; and though we contrived
to clear away a considerable space, evening set in
without our having nearly effected our purpose, and
we were forced reluctantly to put to sea with the
cargo we had already secured, resolving to return to
our work on the morrow.

We made directly for Safety Bay, and were gra-
tified to find my wife already there, with little
Francis—she having resolved to take up her quar-
ters at Tent House so long as we were obliged to visit
the wreck, in order both to shorten our voyages and to
secure the advantage of having us always in sight.

I failed not to thank my wife for this new token
of her kind thoughtfulness and attention; and in
order to gratify her in return, I produced from our
cargo two casks of salt butter, three of flour, and
some bags of rice, wheat, and other grains, as well
as sundry useful household articles, well calculated
to reconcile her to the idea of our revisiting the
wreck, and which she removed with manifest satis-
faction to our store-house.
THE PINNACE, 135

Next morning we returned to the ship, and for an
entire week we continued daily to proceed thither
in the morning ; and, after labouring the entire day,
we returned in the evening, bringing back whatever
seemed calculated to be of the slightest use to us.
My wife gradually became so accustomed to our
daily voyage, that it ceased to give her concern.
With incredible labour we at length got the pinnace
put together, and in a condition to be launched. Its
construction was light and elegant. A complete set
of masts, rigging, and sails, were provided; at the
stern was a neat half-deck, which we fitted in to its
place. We caulked all the seams with pitch and
tow ; completed all its equipment, even to two small
brass guns, which we secured in their places. But
now the greatest difficulty remained. Our pinnace
seemed perfect, and all that we could desire; but
there it lay inclosed within the great beams of the
ship, which seemed to baffle all our puny efforts at cut-
ting a way for it; while we saw that, should a storm
arise, the ship and pinnace must disappear together.

Desperation at length suggested an expedient to
me, which, while it endangered the risk of all, seemed
to offer a chance of success. I kept my project con-
cealed, however, to avoid disappointment. Having
found a large cast-iron mortar, such as is used for
pounding in by chemists, I filled it quite full of
powder, and, having secured an oaken beam to the
top, in which I had previously made a hole for
inserting the match, I attached this huge petard by
136 THE PINNACE.

means of ropes to one of the largest bulk-heads next
the sea, taking care to place it where its recoil would
not be likely to injure the pinnace. I then secured
it to the adjoining timbers as strongly as possible by
means of an iron chain; and having attached a long
match, which would allow sufficient time for our
escape, I ordered all the boys into the boat, I then
lighted the match with a beating heart, and hurried
after them. Although the boys had lent a hand in
fastening on the mortar, they had no idea of its con-
tents, and were entirely ignorant of my project. We
reached the shore, and had already begun to unload
the boat, when an explosion like thunder made all
stand aghast. My wife was the first to recover pre-
sence of mind. “It seems,’’ said she, “to proceed
from the wreck. I shall not be sorry if it has gone
to the bottom.” I hastily counselled the boys to get
into the boat that we might go and see, while I
stayed a moment behind to whisper a word of ex-
planation to my wife.

We rowed out of the bay so soon as I had jumped
into the boat. Curiosity gave a strong stimulus to
our exertions, and we were soon alongside the wreck.
I observed with satisfaction, as we approached, that
the side nearest us remained unchanged, and the
absence of any smoke relieved me from the appre-
hension of fire. Instead of getting on board, how-
ever, as usual, I directed the boys to row to the
opposite side of the ship. The effect produced by
the explosion of my infernal machine was amazing.
THE PINNACE, 137

The greater part of the ship’s side had disappeared,
and the sea around was strewed with the fragments;
while we now saw our pinnace fully exposed to view,
and quite uninjured. I could not conceal my delight,
but exclaimed exultingly, ‘‘ We have triumphed!
The pinnace is ours! Come, boys, let us lose no
time in launching her.” Fritz looked at me for a
moment, and then, turning to his brothers, said, “Ah!
now I comprehend it all. That machine we helped
papa with was to blow out the side of the ship!”

I hastily explained how I had effected this as we
were getting on board. We had taken care to lay
the keel of the pinnace on rollers, and now easily
moved it to the opening, when, having attached a
stout cable to the head, and removed the timbers we
had placed to keep it in position while we were at
work, we had the satisfaction of seeing it slowly glide
into the water. We set to work immediately, and
got in the masts and spars, put up the rigging as
well as it was possible in so short atime; and having
secured it for the night, finding it was too late to
complete our work that evening, we made once more
for the shore. We did not, however, tell my wife
what had happened, being resolved to surprise her
with our pinnace when complete. We therefore
merely said that part of the wreck had been injured
by the explosion of some gunpowder, but there was
still enough left uninjured among its stores to require
our revisiting. My poor wife sighed, evidently
heartily wishing the whole at the botiom of the sea.
138 THE PINNACE.

On returning on the morrow, we still found that
we had a considerable amount of work before us,
and two whole days were spent in completing the
rigging and equipment of our elegant little pinnace.
Nothing would now satisfy the boys, but they would
salute their mother with our two brass guns as we
approached the shore. I yielded at length to their
urgent entreaties. We found enough remaining in
the wreck for an ample cargo, including many articles
which had been too bulky for our boat. All things
were now adjusted for our first homeward voyage.
Fritz was appointed captain, and Ernest and Jack
stood to the guns ready to fire at the word of com-
mand, while I acted as pilot. The pinnace glided
gracefully through the water, followed by the tub-
boat in tow, laden with a variety of useful articles.
As we neared the shore, the boys fired their salute,
and their mother immediately rushed out of the tent,
with Francis in her hand, evidently alarmed; but
our shout of recognition reassured her, and by the
time our pinnace was moored alongside the landing
at the mouth of the river, she was waiting to wel-
come us with delight. So soon as all was secured
on board, the boys got out a plank, handed their
mother on board, and then, firing another salute,
they gave our new vessel the name of The Elizabeth,
after her.

“ But now,” said my wife, ‘ you must not conclude
that either Francis or I have been idle in your ab-
sence;’’ and as she spoke she led us off alongside the
GYMNASTIC EXERCISES, 189

bank of the river to a sheltered flat near the cascade,
where she had taken advantage of a soft loamy soil,
chiefly composed of decayed leaves, and there, with
the help of Francis, she had planted potatoes and
manioc roots, and had sown lettuces, cabbages, and
a variety of European vegetables, surrounding the
whole with a border of maize. We were surprised
and delighted at what she had accomplished in so
short a time, and thus each of us enjoyed the inno-
cent pleasure which the disclosure of our secrets gave
rise to. My wife, now full of her garden projects,
reminded me of the young fruit-trees which she had
been careful to keep damp, but now longed to see
finally planted. I promised that I would lay out our
orchard on the morrow alongside of her garden. We
then hastened to unload our cargo, and secure it on
shore. We loaded the sledge with things of most
importance for our immediate wants; and having
seen both the pinnace and our clumsy but very use-
ful tub-boat safely secured, we set off for Falcon’s Nest,
where we arrived safely, though not without ex-
periencing some degree of fatigue from our burdens.

CHAPTER XVIII.

GYMNASTIC EXERCISES,

I Ave always been of opinion that it is well to
introduce as much variety as possible into the occu-
140 GYMNASTIC EXERCISES,

pations of young people. I therefore resolved to
encourage them in the practice of gymnastic exercises,
and the more so as it was especially necessary to
develope all their physical powers to fit them for
the situation in which our lot was cast. I therefore
encouraged them to compete with one another in
running, leaping, and wrestling, in archery, and
throwing the stone, and in climbing trees or ropes
suspended from their highest branches, and corre-
sponding in some degree to the rigging of the ship.
Ernest alone showed little inclination for such sports,
but I trusted, by the stimulus of example and emula-
tion, to overcome his natural indolence and luxurious
tastes.

We pursued these sports till we had acquired con-
siderable facility, and then I proceeded to teach them
the use of the dasso, an instrument by means of
which the South Americans are able even to capture
baffaloes and wild horses. I fixed two balls of lead

. to a stout cord about a fathom in length, and flinging

off the one at the trunk of a tree, it coiled round it
so firmly, that had it been a moveable object I could
readily have drawn it to me. This experiment
delighted the boys, and I had soon the pleasure of
seeing them all practising the use of this novel
weapon with increasing skill and dexterity. Fritz
speedily acquired great freedom in its use, and I
regarded it with satisfaction as one of the resources

we had to fall back upon when our ammunition
failed,
GYMNASTIC EXERCISES. 141

The next morning I observed, on looking out
from the tree as I was dressing, that the wind was
blowing strong, and the sea considerably agitated;
I therefore directed my attention for the day to home
employments, and volunteered my services to my
wife for any plans she had inview. After examining
the state of our winter stores, and the plentiful supply
of cassava bread which she had made from our first
flour, and watching the young pigeons, which had
been recently hatched, I proceeded to plant our
young fruit-trees in a piece of ground which I laid
out for the purpose.

We had proposed a visit to the gourd plantation
to provide a new supply of vessels, which our
abundant stores had rendered necessary; but the
day wore away in our other employments. Early
on the following morning, having made a hearty
breakfast, we all started off on our proposed expedi-
tion. My sons and I carried fire-arms, while Francis
and his mother joined us, with the ass harnessed to
the sledge, for the purpose of bringing home any
game we might secure, as we were nearly reduced to
our potatoes and cassava bread. Turk accompanied
us, accoutered in his porcupine mail, and the monkey
joined the cavaleade, mounted on the more patient
Bill.

We advanced cheerfully along Flamingo Marsh,
and reached the luxurious plain beyond it, which
filled my wife and the younger children, who had
not seen it before. with admiration. Fritz, who
1412 GYMNASTIC EXERCISES.

longed for some brilliant exploit, left us, accompanied
by Turk. We soon heard the report of his gun, and
a bird of large size fell near us. But the bird was
only slightly maimed, and defended itself with vigour
against both Turk and Bill, the latter of whom had
thrown his rider, and hastened to partake of the
sport. I ran to their assistance, and with some diffi-
culty secured the bird, which was a beautiful female
great bustard, wounded apparently only in one wing.
My wife encouraged the hope that it might prove a
valuable addition to our poultry-yard, as it is a
bird of the gallinaceous order, and easily tamed.
We therefore bound it carefully and laid it on the
sledge.

While conversing on the nature of our new prize,
we proceeded towards the wood of monkeys, where
Fritz had his adventure with the poor little ape.
Fritz amused his mother and brothers by relating
the stratagem by which we obtained our first supply
of nuts. There were no monkeys, however, now in
the trees, and Ernest looked up wistfully, but in
vain, towards the inaccessible cocoa-nuts. ‘If one
would only fall from the tree!’ he exclaimed; and
he had scarcely uttered the word when a beautiful
large cocoa-nut fell almost at his fect. He involun-
tarily sprung aside, when another followed it, to the
astonishment of all. ‘It seems as if we had the
fairy’s wishing-cap,” said one of the children; and
I was puzzled myself to account for it, as the nuts
were still far from the state when they were likely
GYMNASTIC EXERCISES. 143

to fall of themselves. Yet I could neither see bird
nor monkey that could have occasioned it. All at
once Jack shouted out, “ See, papa! here comes the
sorcerer. Here is the fairy !—a most ugly fellow.”
The nuts had continued to fall around us, and I now
detected a large land-erab descending leisurely down
the trunk of the tree.

Little Francis ran immediately to his mother for
protection; Ernest prudently stood aloof to see if
there was any danger to be apprehended; while
Jack, with more courage, advanced and struck at it
with his musket; but, missing his blow, the little
fellow turned and fled on seeing it advance to him
with its hideous claws outstretched. The shout of
merriment which his brothers set up recalled the
fainting courage of the boy; and proceeding now
more deliberately, he threw off his coat, and sud-
denly dropping it on the crab, he thus effectually
crippled it, while I stepped forward and killed it
with my axe. I placed our prize on the sledge; and
as we moved along slowly, impeded by the grass and
underwood, and oppressed by the increasing heat, I
explained to them the nature of the curious animal.
TI told them it was a land crab, which breaks off the
cocoa-nuts as we had now seen, in order to feast ou
them. It is able to do this, not only by perforating
them through the holes at the narrow end of the nut,
but also still more effectually by the shell being occa-
sionally entirely broken by the fall. We had placed
some of the nuts on our sle’ ge, and I now broke open
dad GYMNASTIC EXERCISES.

one of them, which proved a very acceptable refresh-
nent to all.

As we proceeded, our course continued to be
greatly impeded by the thick grass and underwood,
and we were repeatedly compelled to eut a road for
the sledge with considerable labour. At length we
made our way to the gourd-tree wood, from whence
Fritz and I had brought our first calabashes home.
We all set to work immediately to try our hands at
the novel manufactory. My wife wanted some
vessels for her milk, a large scoop for lifting the
butter from the cask, and shallow dishes to serve as
plates at table. Her first orders being complied
with, our next aim was the supply of gourd-nests for
the pigeons, baskets for the eggs, and even bee-hives.
As we proceeded in our work, we were reclining on
the soft grass under the shade of the trees, and found
the manufacture of gourd-baskets, bowls, and flasks,
a very pleasant recreation.

Our previous fatigue and the heat of the day had
combined to render us all thirsty, and Ernest and
Jack now set off to see if any water could be procured
in the vicinity; but they had not been long gone,
when we were alarmed by the cries of Ernest, who
presently reappeared, shouting, “A wild boar! a
wild boar!” We called on the dogs, and hastened
after them to the spot, with our guns ready in our
hands; but the ardour of Ernest and Jack rapidly
abated as we drew near to where the fierce barking
of the dogs already announced an attack, and Fritz
GYMNASTIC EXERCISES, 145

and I were left to face the danger alone. We hast-
ened forward, but our alarm was speedily changed
to mirth, on finding that the terrible wild boar was
only our own great sow, which had escaped into the
woods, and was now vehemently complaining of the
assault of Turk and Bill, who had seized her by her
long ears. I called them off, and the sow speedily
resumed her feast on a species of apple, which ap-
peared to have fallen from the trees under which we
then were. I lifted one of them, which resembled a
medlar, and on cutting it open I found it contained
a rich pulpy juice, with a very pleasant flavour. I
therefore broke off one of the branches loaded with
the fruit; I returned to our party and presented one
to the monkey, who ate it up with great relish, and
the bustard in like manner freely partook of them.
Satisfied with the results of this prudent test, I
examined it more narrowly, and became satisfied
that it must be the guava, a fruit greatly esteemed
in South America; we, therefore, ate of them, and
found them pleasant and very refreshing. My wife
was highly pleased with this addition to our luxuries ;
but Fritz now remonstrated that, after so long a
journey, we might expect to have something better
to show for our labours than a few apples. I yielded,
accordingly, to his importunities, and, setting off
with our guns, and accompanied by Jack, we made
our way through a thicket in front of us, towards a
high rock which we saw on the right. Jack boldly
pushed on ahead, making us follow him occasionally
146 GYMNASTIC EXERCISES,

by the sound of the breaking branches which gave
way before him, when he suddenly startled us with
the announcement that he had seen a crocodile. I
was inclined to smile at the boy’s simplicity, know-
ing the unsuitableness of the locality for the mon-
strous reptile; but as we cautiously approached, I
recognised in the object of his apprehension a large
iguana, a species of lizard, the eggs and flesh of
which are both esteemed as great delicacies. Fritz
was about to fire immediately, but I checked him,
warning him that its scales were probably proof
against his shot. I resolved to try the effect of a very
different charm. Remembering that the whole family
of lizards are more or less affected by music, and that
the natives are accustomed to subdue the iguana by
its means, I approached him slowly, whistling a
low and plaintive air, while I held in the one hand
a stout stick, to which I had attached a running
noose, and in the other a slight switch. The animal
awoke and looked about, apparently charmed with
the sounds; moving his tail slowly, and turning his
head from side to side, disclosed as he did this a for-
midable array of teeth. I cautiously drew near him,
gently tickling him with the wand, and continuing
the music without intermission. Watching my op-
portunity, I slipped the noose over its head, and
jumping on its back, I thrust the wand into its nos-
tril, almost the only vulnerable part of this singular
reptile. The blood flowed copiously, and it was soon
dead, apparently almost without pain,
GYMNASTIC EXERCISES. 147

Our prize was a large and most unwieldy burden.
After considering various expedients, I could find
no better means of transport than by getting it on
my back. Fritz and Jack carried the tail, laughing
immoderately at the ludicrous figure I presented
with my strange load; and in this way we reached
the sledge.

My wife had begun to feel anxious at our protracted
absence, and was delighted to see us return, though
my burden, which appeared in no degree attractive
to her, filled little Francis with terror. I soon,
however, succeeded in satisfying them of the value
of our prize; and as my wife now warned us that it
was growing late, we partook of the provisions we
had brought with us, and prepared to return home.
As the sledge, which was heavily laden, would
necessarily greatly retard us, I determined to return
for it on the following day. I therefore tied up
some of our gourd vessels and a quantity of the
guavas, and laid them across the ass’s back. The
iguana and the crab were next disposed of in like
manner, as I feared that they would not keep till
our return. Little Francis was mounted behind
these, and we set out for home. One of the boys
took charge of the bustard, which was made to
walk part of the way with a string secured to its
leg. As we returned through the wood we remarked
the wild and discordant cries of numerous parrots and
other birds, that seemed to be feeding upon the acorns
of a species of evergreen oak which abounded there.

(80) 10
148 EXPLORING EXCURSION.

We reached Falcon’s Nest before dark. Our cala-
bash manufactures were unpacked, and excited uni-
versal satisfaction. Some of them had been scooped
out with only an opening in the side about the size
required for a pigeon-hole. These Jack carried off,
and secured at various points to the branches of the
tree, and having lined them with dry moss, he com-
pleted his work by transferring to one of them a
brooding pigeon with her eggs. My wife meanwhile
busied herself preparing a portion of the iguana for
supper, which proved an excellent dish. The crab
was also cooked, but its tough and tasteless flesh met
with little favour. The work of the day made us all
welcome the return of bed-time ; and having accord-
ingly mounted to our dormitory, we were all soon
asleep.

CHAPTER XIX.

EXPLORING EXCURSION.

On the following morning I set off with Fritz, taking
Turk with us, and the ass, to bring the sledge home.
I had in view a more complete exploration of the
country in the direction we had been the day before,
and had therefore proposed the leaving of the sledge
behind us the more readily, as it furnished so good
an excuse for our departure, without exciting any
alarm in the mind of my affectionate wife. We took
EXPLORING EXCURSION. 149

with us provisions for the day, and started after an
early breakfast.

On arriving at the evergreen oaks we had passed
on the previous day, we found our truant sow busy
yegaling herself on the acorns. We were so far
gratified, by finding that our encounter with her on
the previous day had not made her more inclined to
avoid us. We observed among the trees a variety
of the: beautiful birds we had seen on the previous
day. Although I objected to all needless destruction
of life in mere thoughtlessness or sport, I did not
deem it necessary to refuse Fritz’s urgent request
for permission to fire at them that we might ascertain
their species. At a single shot he brought down
three, two of which were parrots, and the third the
great Virginian jay. As Fritz was reloading his
gun, I was struck by singular sounds which we
heard, somewhat resembling those of a muffled drum,
and accompanied with a noise like that of the
sharpening of a saw. I immediately conceived that
we must be in the vicinity of a party of savages,
and we advanced cautiously, and not without con-
siderable trepidation, to try and discover the cause
of these strange sounds. At length, gently drawing
aside the close boughs of a thicket, we perceived a
bird of brilliant plumage seated on the decayed
stump of a tree. It was about the size of a large
common cock. Its tail was spread out in the manner
practised by a turkey cock, the crest and the feathers
round the neck were erect, and agitated with a qui-
150 EXPLORING EXCURSION.

vering motion, while it produced the singular sounds
which we had supposed to proceed from a native
drum, by striking the tree on which it stood with its
wings. The bird continued to strut about in this
singular manner, evidently to the great delight of a
troop of its mates assembled round it. From time
to time the bird uttered the sharp sounds which I had
compared to the setting of asaw. I watched the
whole proceedings with the most lively interest, and
was curious to see what would be the result of this
singular natural comedy, but in a moment a shot of
Fritz’s gun put an end to the curious scene. The
actor lay dead before me, and his auditory dispersed
in affright, frustrating my hopes of seeing its con-
clusion. I angrily reproached Fritz for such wanton
destruction, and expressed strongly my regret to sce
him indulging a state of mind which could find no
pleasure in such a scene, but from the death of its
principal actor. The boy was ashamed of his con-
duct, as well as grieved at my displeasure; but as
his act was now irremediable, I told him to pick up
the dead bird. I had already recognised in it the
bonasa, or American heath-cock, which is much
esteemed as game.

We placed our prize on the back of the ass, and
continued our march. Arriving at the guava trees,
we refreshed ourselves with some of their fruit,
and soon after reached the spot where we had left
our sledge; but as it was still early, I determined to
carry out my exploring plans, taking the ass with
EXPLORING EXCURSION, 151

us for the sake of the provisions it carried. Reach-
ing the foot of the rocks, we pursued our course
along their base, headed by Turk, who generally
led the way. From this we emerged into a wood
filled with many novelties, and possessed of consi-
derable attraction for us. Both the potato and the
manioc root we saw in abundance, and we observed
a bush loaded with small white berries, which, after
examining, I pronounced to be the curious fruit of
the candleberry myrtle, or wax-tree, from which a
species of wax is procured which may be made into
candles. Pleased to find an object that I knew
would be prized at home, I called on Fritz to help
me in gathering these berries, which, though not
edible, would be highly esteemed by his mother, who
had already lamented that she should be compelled
to lay by her most important avocations whenever
the sun went down. We accordingly filled a bag
with the berries, and laid it on the ass’s back to take
home with us.

As we proceeded on ow route, a new curiosity
attracted our attention. This was a colony of birds
occupying apparently a single abode. We perceived
what we supposed to be the native colonists, a number
of birds of a‘small size, and no way remarkable for
beauty, their plumage being black. The singular
group of nests was constructed irregularly, and formed
a great unshapely excrescence adhering to the trunk
and surrounding branches of the tree. Over this a
common roof, formed of clay and rushes, protected
152 EXPLORING EXCURSION.

the whole alike from sun and rain. As we stayed
to examine this remarkable natural curiosity, we per-
ceived also various beautiful small parrots, of rich
green and golden plumage, hovering about the nest,
and apparently seeking to force an entrance. This
added to Fritz’s curiosity, and he forthwith climbed
the tree, and after some difficulty and various unsuc-
cessful trials, he found one of the nests, containing a
bird sitting on its eggs; and inserting his hand, he
drew forth, not one of the blackbirds, but a beautiful
little parrot. The cries uttered by his prize soon
gathered a multitude of the parrots around Fritz,
fluttering about and attempting to peck at him; but
he reached the ground in safety, and, with my per-
mission, decided on carrying the little prisoner home
with him, when he hoped to tame it and teach it to
speak,

We now directed our route homeward. The
gorgeous plumage of the birds, and wonderful beauty
of the insects and flowers, constantly tempted us to
pause, and excited in our minds renewed wonder and
admiration. The singular bird-colony we had seen
also led us to converse on the gregarious and social
habits frequently manifested in various classes of the
animal kingdom, from the vast herds of buffaloes and
antelopes, down even to the ant or bee. We also
recalled to remembrance the singular habits of the
beavers, which live in large communities on the
banks of rivers, and, by their united labours, are able
to construct dams across running streams of great
EXPLORING EXCURSION. 153

size, and erect beaver villages on the banks of the
still water provided for them by such means. Thus
conversing, we walked pleasantly along, pursuing
our way homeward by a new route.

As we proceeded, we reached a wood in which we
observed groups of large trees entirely unknown to
us. They were apparently from forty to sixty fect
high, and covered with a eracked and scaly bark
somewhat like that of the pine. The trunk was bare
of branches nearly all the way to the top, and from
the fissures in the bark a thick gum exuded, which
had formed balls, adhering in various places to the
tree. Fritz gathered a ball of this gum, and having
been accustomed at home to employ some of the
resinous gums of the pine, as well as that of the
cherry-tree, both as cements and varnish, he attempted
to soften this with his breath. By chance, however,
he discovered that it was extremely tenacious and
elastic, and on pulling it out, it admitted of great
expansion, returning again, when released, to its
original form. running to me, he exclaimed, “‘ Look, papa! if this
is not the India-rubber which we were wont to use
when drawing at home.”

I took héld of the object of his examination, and
remarked, “I do believe you have made a most
important discovery.” Fritz, who only thought of
his old school-boy use of it, thought I was ridiculing
him; but having satisfied myself that his conclusion
was right, I proceeded to explain to him how many
154 EXPLORING EXCURSIONS,

useful purposes it could be applied to. “It will
indeed be a most valuable addition to our native
supplies,” I said. ‘¢ From this gum we shall be able
to make shoes, bottles, elastic belts, and many other
useful articles. I have already a plan in view for
our shoemaking.” I then explained to him how the
India-rubber bottles are made, which are sent in such
quantities to Europe. The caoutchouc, as it is called,
exudes, as you have seen, in the form of a milky
sap from the tree. In order to collect it in large
quantities, the natives make incisions in the bark,
and receive it in vessels, in which it is prevented
from solidifying by agitating and shaking them. Clay
forms are then made in the shape of bottles, or any
other objects which it is desired to reproduce in
caoutchouc, and over these the liquid gum is spread
in repeated layers, until the requisite thickness is
obtained. They are then dried in the smoke, which
confers on the India-rubber the dark colour which
we usually see it possess in a solid state, and the clay
model being then broken, is easily extracted, leaving
the flexible bottle or shoe. Fritz now perceived the
great use to which we might turn his discovery, and
gave full play to his delight: “It is enough,” cried
he, exultingly, “for one day, to have made such a
discovery. It is delightful.”

Well pleased with our discovery, and anticipating
the future comfort to be derived from our caoutchouc
shoes, we continued our route, In a wood which
stretched at one place from the sea-shore apparently
EXPLORING EXCURSIONS. 155

to the rocks which had hitherto bounded our progress
inland, I observed a tree of small proportions occur-
ring repeatedly among a quantity of the cocoa-nut
palms. One of these which had fallen, I examined
narrowly, being attracted to it in part by a white
dust which strewed the adjacent bushes; and on
opening the trunk with my axe, I found it filled with
a white mealy powder, which I had little doubt was
the sago already introduced and extensively used in
Europe. On tasting it, this opinion was fully con-
firmed, and we accordingly collected the whole supply
that the fallen tree yielded. We now made for the
gourd plantation, and having recovered the sledge,
and placed our various supplies on it, we took a new
course in the direction of the shore, so as to avoid the
thick underwood which had so impeded our progress
on the previous day. By doing so, we reached the
sugar-cane plantation, which we had formerly dis-
covered near Cape Disappointment; and taking ad-
vantage of our means of conveyance, we added to
our patient ass’s load a large bundle of these useful
canes.

By this time the day was far advanced. We
therefore pushed on homeward, making much more
rapid progress than in the morning, owing to the
level and bare road we found near the shore. On
reaching Falcon’s Nest, our various treasures excited
the liveliest curiosity and satisfaction. My wife pro-
duced from the sledge the sago and the sugar-canes,
while the boys were intent on examining the plumage
156 USEFUL AND ORNAMENTAL ARTS.

of the jay and parrots; but when Fritz produced from
his pouch the beautiful little green parrot, still alive,
their delight was beyond all bounds. The India-
rubber was produced as we sat at supper, and the
virtues of the candle-berries fully explained, so that
we had abundant pardon from all for having extended
our ramble so far beyond the gourd-tree wood, where
the sledge had been abandoned on the previous day.

CHAPTER XX.
USEFUL AND ORNAMENTAL ARTS.

I was hardly dressed on the following morning,
before my wife and children were at me with the
request that I would proceed with my promised
candle manufacture. I tried to recall to my mind
all that I knew of the process. A little animal fat,
I knew, was desirable to mix with the wax, in order
to make it produce a clearer light; but this I saw
must be provided on some future occasion. I placed
a large shallow boiler on the fire, and filled it with
the berries. As the heat increased, the wax slowly
melted, and rose to the surface of the liquid which
the berries yielded. This I carefully skimmed off,
and transferred to another deep vessel, which I placed
near the fire to preserve it in a liquid state. Con-
tinuing this process for a considerable time, the second
vessel was at length nearly filled with an oily-look-
USEFUL AND ORNAMENTAL ARTS. 157

ing matter, of pleasing smell and a pale green colour.
My wife had meanwhile busied herself in manufac-
turing wicks from the threads which she drew from
some torn fragments of stout sail-cloth, and twisted
together. These I tied three or four together upon
pieces of stick, and then dipping them successively
in the liquid wax, I put them on the neighbouring
bushes to harden. By the time that the last was
dipped, I found the first already firm, so that I was
able to repeat the process continuously until the wax
had accumulated to a sufficient thickness round the
wicks. The whole were then placed in a convenient
shady place to harden, but we were too impatient to
test the value of ow new manufacture to be willing
to wait very long. That same evening one of the
new candles was inserted in a clay socket, and lighted
on our table, to the great delight of all, who felt in
this apparently trivial luxury an object which recalled
the most delightful associations with our old European
home. Its practical value, however, was great, as it
enabled us to add many useful hours to a busy day.
Our success in this important matter set us to try
new expedients towupply other wants. My wife had
already made various unsuccessful attempts to manu-
facture butter from the cream obtained from the cow,
and was greatly mortified at the failure. I was un-
willing to waste time in the construction of a regular
churn, as I greatly doubted my being successful. I
recalled to mind the various processes I had heard of,
and remembering the simple method practised by the
158 USEFUL AND ORNAMENTAL ARTS,

Hottentots, who make butter merely by shaking the
cream in a skin, I conceived that we might find an
equally simple expedient. I therefore selected a
large gourd in which only a small aperture had becn
made in the side, and having carefully cleaned it
inside, I nearly filled it with cream; and then laying
another piece on the hole, I bound it up firmly, so
that none should escape. I next placed four stakes
firmly in the ground, and stretching a piece of canvass
loosely between these, I fastened the gourd in the
centre of it, and set the boys, one at each of the four
sides, to rock it alternately with a double motion,
by a regular shaking of the canvass in pairs. The
employment seemed to them excellent sport, and was
kept up with great mirth and humorous jesting for
nearly an hour. On taking off the cover, I had then
the satisfaction of seeing my wife take from the gourd
a supply of excellent fresh butter.

My next work was the construction of a two-
wheeled cart, instead of our sledge, as the possession
of the wheels which we had brought from the wreck
had already removed the chief difficulty ; and I com-
pleted before long a somewhat clumsy, but very
useful conveyance. While I was thus occupied, my
wife engaged the boys to assist her in planting some
of our fruit trees, and placing them in the most
favourable situations. When I had completed my
work I went to their assistance. The vines we dis-
posed round the roots of some of our great trees,
hoping through time that they would climb up and
USEFUL AND ORNAMENTAL ARTS. 159

cluster round the stems, and ultimately enable us to
train them over trellis-work, so as to form a con-
venient and delightful shade. We next took the
saplings of cherry, chestnut, and walnut trees, which
we had brought from the wreck, and planted them
in two rows along each side of the path which was
already trodden by our repeated journeys to and from
Tent House. I next set the boys to work with the
wheelbarrows, while I took the ass with my new
cart, and by our united labour we brought up sand
and gravel from the shore, with which we formed a
raised road between the saplings, which, we hoped,
would through time grow up and form a shady avenue
to protect us in our journeys to and from the store-
house. To complete our avenue, we had to select
from among the native trees those which seemed best
adapted to our purpose; and we also applied some of
them to form a screen or shelter from the sun, so as
to protect some of the more delicate European plants
from its scorching heat. We next turned our atten-
tion to Tent House. We selected for this also the
native trees, which seemed to thrive best under an
exposure to heat and d¥ought. These included a
species of the orange tree, the citron, pistachio, mul-
berry, and also a large tree which bears a fruit some-
what like the orange, but as large as a child’s head.
These operations we continued from day to day, and
soon had the pleasure of seeing our once barren
shelter at Tent House assume a pleasant and highly
cultivated aspect. The storehouse we enclosed with
160 USEFUL AND ORNAMENTAL ARTS.

a hedge of the Indian fig and wild orange, the prickly
leaves of which effectually preclude the passage of the
strongest animal through a thicket of them; and as
they grew with all the rapidity of tropical vegetation,
our storehouse, where all our most valuable property
was secured, was soon surrounded with a natural
rampart, which not only concealed it from view, but
was impenetrable to man or beast. As we were still
ignorant of the dangers we might be exposed to, I
constructed, along the bend of the river, embank-
ments, with embrasures, in which the cannon from
the pinnace could be placed, and which would also
protect us while using our fire-arms, should we ever
be attacked by savages. I was anxious to complete
the isolation of this stronghold, which we could look
upon as a ready refuge against danger, by converting
Family Bridge into a drawbridge; but as this would
necessarily be a work of considerable time and labour,
we contented ourselves meanwhile with removing
the planks at either end when we passed it, so as
effectually to interrupt the passage of the river.

We were employed unceasingly for six weeks in
this work, with the exception of each returning Sab-
bath, which we joyfully spent as a day of rest, and
devoted it to the sacred duties of Divine worship and
pious converse. This continuous employment proved
altogether conducive alike to health and to a con-
tented cheerfulness of mind. The embellishment of -
our dwelling gave it new attractions in our eyes, and
the planting and sowing of our orchard and garden
USEFUL AND ORNAMENTAL ARTS. 161

gave us new sources of hope and anticipation, which
helped to remove every tendency to repining at our
lot. On the contrary, our minds were filled with
sentiments of gratitude and thanksgiving to our
heavenly Father, who had not only rescued us from
a watery grave, but had so wonderfully supplied our
every want.

During our constant occupation with the one ob-
ject in view, we had almost forgot the existence of
the wreck, and had made no attempt to ascertain
what condition it remained in. Already, however,
we began to find that, however well we might be
supplied in every other respect, our wardrobes were
sufficiently scanty ; and I now bethought me to make
another visit to the wreck, to see if some large chests,
which had been too bulky to transfer to our boat,
might not be still there, in which case they could
probably be hoised without difficulty into the pin-
nace, the masts and yards of which rendered such
operations easy. We set sail, accordingly, on the
following morning, and reached the wreck without
difficulty. Though considerably more shattered than
when we saw it last, it still remained firmly jammed
into the hollow of the rock on which it had struck,
where, indeed, it seemed likely to remain, till broken
away piecemeal by the waves. Having now such
facilities for convenient transport, I resolved to com-
plete the work of spoiling the wreck of everything
that could possibly prove useful. We secured the
large chests, some of which contained an ample store
162 USEFUL AND ORNAMENTAL ARTS.

of clothes. We also removed the whole remaining
supply of the ship’s ammunition and shot, and took
with us such of the cannon as were not too heavy
to be of use to us. From the latter we took the
carriage-wheels; and, returning day after day, we
stripped the vessel of doors, windows, locks, bolts,
spars, funnels, and every article that could be re-
moved. We then tore up the planks of the deck, in
doing which we exposed four large copper cauldrons,
which had been designed for a sugar manufactory.
These proved too large for us to lift, so we secured
them by ropes to a quantity of empty casks, which
remained, so as to prevent their sinking when the
ship went down.

Having at length removed everything that could
possibly avail us from the wreck, I came to the con-
clusion that it would be better to blow it up than
to leave it slowly to waste away under the action of
the sea. I accordingly disposed a cask of gunpowder
in the most suitable way, and, attaching to it a
match, which would burn for a long time before it
reached the powder, I returned hastily to the pinnace
and made for the shore. We arrived speedily in
Safety Bay, and, having secured the pinnace, I pro-
ceeded to Tent House and requested my wife to have
our supper carried to a little point of land from
whence we could still see the wreck. We were all
looking with lively interest towards the spot, when,
just as the sun was going down, a column of fire and
smoke rose from the wreck, followed by a rumbling
USEFUL AND ORNAMENTAL ARTS. 163

noise like thunder, and announced that the vessel
which had brought us to this strange shore, and had
furnished us with such valuable supplies, was that
moment finally shattered to pieces. We could not
help giving way to tears at the destruction of what
seemed to be the last link that had preserved any
connection between us and the world from which we
were shut out. Our last aim had been accomplished ;
yet though it was the suecessful result of our own
plans, we returned to Tent House that evening with
a feeling of sadness, as if we had lost an old friend,
though my wife, I believe, felt it a relief to her
nind to know that we could no longer expose our-
selves on a wreck which she had dreaded would go
to pieces, carrying us with it into the deep.
Refreshed by a night’s rest, we hastened to the
shore on the following morning with feelings greatly
changed, and found it strewed with the fragments of
the wreck as well as some of its contents which had
lain beyond our reach in the hold. We also ob-
served other objects afloat at some distance, among
which we recognised a group of.gasks which we had
little doubt supported the copper cauldrons we had
secured to them on the previous evening. We ac-
cordingly jumped into the pinnace, and made off to
take them in tow. On our way we picked up numer-
ous floating spars, and collected a complete raft of
the floating timber, all of which we brought to land.
With the help of these large copper boilers, we
ultimately constructed a powder magazine, separated
Gy 11
164 NEW DISCOVERIES.

into three distinct compartments, by means of which
our ammunition was effectually secured against
damage either from fire or water.

When we returned from our final labours in con-
nection with the wreck, my wife announced to us the
welcome intelligence, that one of the geese and two
of the ducks had each hatched a little brood, and had
been found by her leading off their young offspring
to the water. This added an additional motive
to the general desire already felt for returning to
Falcon’s Nest; and we accordingly devoted the re-
mainder of the day to putting things in such order
at Tent House as would admit of our leaving it on
the following morning.

CHAPTER XXI.
NEW DISCOVERIES,

Ox returning to Falcon’s Nest, we remarked that
our young trees which we had disposed alongside
the road were drooping for want of support, and I
accordingly resolved to proceed in the direction of
Cape Disappointment in order to bring home a supply
of bamboos for props. No sooner did I mention my
proposal than a host of reasons were produced, re-
quiring that one and all should accompany me. Our
supply of candles was nearly exhausted, and we must
have more berries, for my wife now devoted the
NEW DISCOVERIES. 165

evening to her needle, and my own journal was
written by eandle-light. Fritz took for granted he
should be my companion. My wife wanted to col-
lect some of the wild-fowls’ eggs to put below her
hens. Jack must needs go to gather guavas for
himself, and even little Francis pressed his desire to
see the sugar-canes growing. So, on the following
morning, we all set off together. I took the cart
with us, harnessing both the ass and cow to it. I
placed in it a good supply of provisions and a bottle
of wine, and constructed a seat for Francis and his
mother, in case of their being over-fatigued, as f
purposed extending our journey, if possible, into an
exploring expedition. I also took with me a large
canvass, so that we could make a tent, and thus
avoid the necessity of returning the same evening.
The whole family were in the highest spirits.
We crossed the potato and manice plantations, and
passed through the guava wood. Our first halt was
at the bird-coiony from whence Pritz had brought
his parrot, and I now recognised ‘Yhe birds to be
of the species called the sociable grossheaks. We
gathered a large supply of the candle-berries, and
also filled a ie with the guavas, from which my wife
proposed to make jelly. After having stayed for
some time to let our ass and cow rest, we proceeded
to the caoutchouc trees. We had brought a supply
of large gourd vessels with us for the purpose of
collecting their gum. I now pierced the trunks in
various places, and forming a sort of funnel with
166 NEW DISCOVERIES.

leaves of the tree, I placed the vessels below them,
and had the satisfaction before we left of seeing the
gum exuding and beginning to flow into the cala-
bashes. We pursued our route, and after passing
the cocoa-nut trees, we at length found ourselves
near the shore, about midway between the sugar-
cane and bamboo plantations, while in front of us
was the great bay stretching off towards Cape Dis-
appointment, which bounded our view on the right,
and extended far into the sea.

The great beauty of the scene was so gratifying to
all of us, that we at once resolved on making it our
resting-place and future station for halting in all
such expeditions. We even momentarily enter-
tained the idea of deserting Falcon’s Nest for the ©
shade of these beautiful palm trees. A very slight
reflection, however, sufficed to dismiss from our
minds all thoughts of forsaking a dwelling on which
so much labour had already been satisfactorily ex-
pended. We determined, however, to make it our
abode for the night, and accordingly loosed our ani-
mals, that they might freely graze on the verdant
turf.

Fritz and Jack set to work forthwith to climb the
palm trees, with a view to obtain a supply of cocoa-
nuts, as we had neither monkey nor land-crab at
hand to minister to ow wants. They ascended a
little way with considerable agility, but the tall
smooth stems offered no resting-place or prop to aid
their efforts; and after a few incflectuel struggles,
NEW DISCOVERIES. 167

both returned, mortified and disappointed, to the
ground. I had hitherto remained an inactive spec-
tator, but I now came to the assistance of the boys.
I produced pieces of the rough shark’s skin which I
had brought with me on purpose, and directed them
to bind these tightly to their legs. I then showed
them how to aid themselves in climbing, by means
of a cord with a running loop, as frequently prac-
tised by the native Indians. With these helps they
resumed their efforts, and soon reached the top,
where, by the free use of the hatchets which they
carried at their belts, we had soon a plentiful supply
of cocoa-nuts. Our little monkey, which had been
watching their proceedings, suddenly leaped to a
neighbouring palm tree, and nimbly mounted to the
top, from whence he detached the nuts almost as
quickly as Fritz and Jack with their hatchets.
Ernest alone remained inactive, and his brothers
failed not to make his indolence the subject of their
jests, as we sat together discussing the fruits of their
exertions. Ernest, however, remained unmoved, and
sat looking up at the trees with an abstracted air.
le then turned to me and asked for a portion of one
of the nuts to make a cup, and having suspended it
by means of a string to one of his buttons, he ad-
dressed us with serious gravity and composure :—
“Most honoured gentlemen and lady! it is most
true that the climbing of these trees is neither easy
nor pleasant to me; but since the accomplishment of
the feat is deemed so honourable, I will also try this
168 NEW DISCOVERIES.

marvellous exploit, and see if I cannot bring down
as valuable a reward as these nuts of my brothers.
Taking, accordingly, the shark’s skin and cord in
the same way as they had used them, he proceeded,
with unexpected agility, to ascend a palm tree on
which, to the secret delight of his brothers, they
observed that no cocoa-nuts grew. Ernest, however,
had been intently regarding this tree, and on reach-
ing its summit, he struck with his axe and threw
down at our feet some tufts of yellow leaves. We
were at first inclined to regard this as only a piece
of mischievous and unprofitable bravado; but on
attentively examining them, I perceived that the in-
telligent boy had detected for us the cabbage palm,
a source of food highly prized by the natives of
South America for its delicate and nutritive qualities.
He did not immediately come down, but after retain-
ing his place for some time, he descended, and pro-
ducing the nut-shell he had carried with him, he said,
with a triumphant air, ‘‘ See, father, I have brought
you a still greater treat, which, I hope, will prove to
your mind.” As he said this, he presented me with
the shell filled with a rich juice, which I recognised,
on tasting, as genuine palm wine, and an exceed-
ingly agreeable and refreshing drink. I passed it
to my wife, who again permitted the boys to partake
of it, and all joined heartily in commending the in-
telligence and agility of Ernest.

The sun was now sinking in the west, and we set
to work to construct our tent, with the help of the
NEW DISCOVERIES, 169

bamboos which we had cut down, over which we
drew the large canvass as a covering. But while
we were thus occupied, the ass, which had been
quietly grazing beside us, suddenly set up a loud
bray, and after tossing his head and kicking up his
heels in the air, he set off at a gallop, and disap-
peared among the bamboos. Alarmed alike from
the apprehension of losing our useful servant, and
from the fear that his sudden violence might be
occasioned by the approach of some wild beast, I
called the dogs, and cautiously set out in pursuit ot
him. I could not, however, discover any traces of
either, nor did the manner of the dogs on their
return furnish any ground for supposing that they
recognised the presence of any wild animals in our
vicinity. To guard, however, against all danger, I
made a large fire with the dried reeds which abounded
near us, and having seen the others asleep, I replen-
ished it from time to time till midnight, when, having
seen no cause of apprehension, | followed the example
of the rest, and withdrew to my bed of grass within
the tent.

The following morning, as no traces of our wan-
derer appeared, I selected Jack for my companion,
leaving Fritz and Ernest with their mother; and,
calling Turk and Bill, we set off to seek the ass.
After wandering for an hour through the cane-brake,
we emerged at length into the open ground beyond,
where an extensive plain appeared bordered towards
the sea by the great bay. The lofty cliffs extended
170 NEW DISCOVERIES.

before us, reaching here towards the shore, where
they abruptly terminated in a precipitous cliff appa-
rently within tidemark. A river of large size joined
the sea at this point, and we perceived a narrow
strip of land between the cliff and the river, appa-
rently left by the receding tide. We conceived it
probable that the wanderer must have gone this way.
We accordingly ascended the stream till we found a
place where we could safely ford it. Beyond this
the soil was soft and sandy, and here we recognised
the footprints of the ass, which encouraged us to
proceed.

After advancing some way, we recognised many
other footprints, evidently of a considerable herd of
animals, and some of them much larger than those
of the ass. This added to our curiosity, and we
resolved to continue our search. After proceeding a
short way, we ascended a hill of no great elevation,
which had hitherto limited our view. Here a most
beautiful prospect opened upon us. With the help
of our telescope, we saw stretching before us an
extensive and luxuriant landscape, but on which no
traces of human culture or habitation were apparent.
To our right we still saw the lofty range of rocks,
which seemed to shut in the part of the land where
we were. On the left was a range of undulating
hills, dotted with groves of palms, and we could
trace the river which we had crossed winding through
the valley. Everything seemed to indicate the ab-
sence of human beings. The birds flew fearlessly
NEW DISCOVERIES. 171

around us, while our eyes were delighted with mag-
nificent blossoms of tropical vegetation, and with the
brilliantly-ccloured insects that flitted about them.
Straining our eyes to observe more closely some
distant object, we were struck with a dark group
which seemed to move about. We accordingly fol-
lowed in the direction. After crossing through a
wood of gigantic bamboos, the stalks of which were
as thick as a man’s thigh, and their height not less
than thirty feet—the giant reed of America, as I
presumed, with which the natives supply their canoes
with masts—we came out into the open country, and
suddenly found ourselves face to face with a herd of
wild buffaloes. I was taken completely by surprise;
but the herd, which was not numerous, stood gazing
at us, apparently equally astonished with ourselves,
and without any symptoms of anger. Fortunately,
the dogs were behind us, so that we had time to take
measures for defence. Withdrawing slowly so as
not to excite their notice, we examined our guns,
and held them ready to fire. At this moment the
dogs appeared, and, notwithstanding all our attempts
to restrain them, the instant they discovered the
herd they set up a fierce barking, and flew at them,
I had thought only of a cautious retreat, being more
anxious about my spirited boy, Jack, than myself;
but now escape was impossible. The whole herd
seemed to prepare themselves for an attack. They
pawed the ground and bellowed fiercely, as if excit-
ing each other to combat. The dogs, however, were
172 NEW DISCOVERIES.

in no degree intimidated, but, dashing in among the
herd, they seized a young buffalo calf, and dragged
it to the ground. The mother made at the ageres-
sors, followed by the whole herd, when, just as we
seemed in the crisis of our fate, I called to Jack,
who had shown the utmost ccolness and presence of
mind, and we both fired at the same instant. The
effect was marvellous. The whole herd stood for
an instant as if petrified, and then, wheeling about,
they dashed off through the river, and did not pause
so long as they were in sight. The dogs had con-
tinued to keep hold of their prize, and the mother
now alone remained of the herd. She was already
wounded by our first fire, and seemed stunned still
more by the unwonted sounds. But recovering her-
self, she was just about to make a dash at the dogs
with her horns, when a well-directed shot laid her
at her length on the ground. I sprung immediately
forward, and, drawing one of the large pistols which
I carried at my belt, I discharged it right between
the eyes, and put an end to her.

All this had been so rapid that we seemed now
for the first time to breathe. I commended my
courageous companion for his great coolness and
presence of mind, which had largely contributed to
my own self-possession, while I failed not to render
thanks to God for our deliverance. The young
buftalo was still held by the dogs, and was bellowing
and pawing the ground, while it struggled violently
toescape. I was at some loss how to act, as I was
NEW DISCOVERIES. 173

anxious, if possible, to preserve it alive; but Jack,
with his usual promptitude, solved the difficulty.
He unwound the lasso which he carried round his
waist, and watching his opportunity when the young
buffalo flung up its heels, he dexterously threw the
ball so as to wind the cord round its legs, and then,
giving it a sudden jerk, he threw the animal to.the
ground. I hastened immediately to secure our prize;
and having effectually bound his legs with a stronger
cord, I called off the dogs. Jack was delighted at
the success of his plans, and already began to anti-
cipate the delight of his mother at our prize. Of
this, however, I was less certain, as I was at a loss
to conceive by what means we were to transport it to
our resting-place, though Jack was already antici-
pating the figure it would make when harnessed to
the cart in the place of our strayed ass. At length I
bethought me of a plan pursued both in Italy and
Spain, which, though somewhat cruel, seemed the
only means for effecting our purpose. With Jack’s
assistance, I held the young buffalo’s head, and with
my clasp knife I pierced the cartilage of the nose
between the nostrils, and, passing through this a
stout cord, I secured it toa tree. I then loosed the
cords on its legs sufficiently to permit of its rising
without admitting of its ranning, and we soon found
that with the cord in our hands we could guide it as
we pleased.

We could not think of altogether abandoning s0
valuable a prize as the buffalo we had killed. I
174 NEW DISCOVERIES.

therefore cut off some of the best portions of it, and
took the tongue as an especial delicacy. I also
carefully skinned the fore-legs, which the American
hunters greatly prize for making strong and flexible
long-boots. The dogs were then permitted to take
their share; but while we were enjoying some of the
provisions we had brought with us under the shade
of a neighbouring tree, we soon saw that they were
not to have an undisputed banquet. The air seemed
to be filled with vultures and other birds of prey;
and, before we left, little remained but the bare
skeleton. We employed ourselves, meanwhile, in
cutting down some of the bamboos we had passed. I
selected the largest, as they made very useful vessels
when cut off at the joints. Jack, however, seemed
intent only on gathering small ones, and I asked
him, jestingly, if he was meditating the manufacture
of panpipes to announce our return? I was greatly
pleased when he replied that he had not been think-
ing of his own amusements, but was selecting such
as he thought would enable him to make candlesticks
for his mother. I complimented the boy on his
thoughtful consideration; and as already the day
was far advanced, we collected together our various
supplies, and set off on our return. The young
buffalo, galled behind by the dogs, and checked by
the cord in his nose, soon moved along with little
resistance; and when I found that it no longer made
any efforts at escape, I secured another cord to its
horns, so as to use the other only as a check. We
SAGO MANUFACTORY. 175

even ventured, when we got fatigued, to lay our
burdens across its back; and it was now so com-
pletely subdued that it moved alongside of us without
any resistance.

Quickening our pace, we repassed the river, and
soon got on our former track. The evening had
already set in before were turned to our family; and
we had an almost endless round of questions to reply
to before we could satisfy them of our day’s proceed-
ings. Our prize was a subject of universal congra-
tulation and delight. Jack and I, however, were
faint and worn out with our day’s labour, and having
partaken of a hearty supper, we were thankful to
stretch our limbs on the soft dried grass within the
tent, where all were soon sound asleep.

CHAPTER XXII,
SAGO MANUFACTORY.

Next morning I longed to hear how my wife and
the boys had fared in our absence; and I found they
had also their share of exploits and dangers to
recount. Fritz and Ernest had, with great labour,
felled a sago palm, and now awaited my assistance
to extract its useful core. Fritz was still better
pleased with a young Malabar eagle, which he had
taken from a nest he had discovered when climbing
among the rocks at Cape Disappointment. The
76 SAGO MANUFACTORY,

Malabar or Indian eagle does not grow to a large
size, so I made no objection to his desire to keep
and tame it. I advised him to try if it could not be
trained as a falcon, to pursue game. As, however,
Jack had already obtained permission to keep a
young jackall cub, which he had rescued from the
dogs, I deemed it right to announce, that if these
were to be retained, each must promise to look after
his own favourites, as they could not expect their
mother to burden herself with such a strange medley
of live stock.

We had given the young buffalo some milk over-
night, and now found it grazing. It ate some sliced
roots which we cut for the purpose with considerable
relish, and we had little doubt that we should be
able to train and tame it. We had also kindled a
fire of green wood overnight, and hung our buffalo
flesh in its smoke, after rubbing it with salt. This
we repeated in the morning, and renewed the fire, so
as to complete the preparation of our first preserved
beef. Iwas for setting out immediately for Falcon’s
Nest; but my wife directed my attention to the
enormous sago palm which the boys had felled with
so much difficulty. It measured fully seventy feet
long, and it was obvious, if we were to avail ourselves
of its nutritious pith, we must abandon all thoughts
of quitting our halting station for the day. The
labour, however, seemed well worth spending for
such a purpose, in addition to which it occurred
to me, that, after the trunk was split up and
SAGO MANUFACTORY. 177

xcooped out, its two halves would make excellent
pipes for conveying water from the cascade near
Tent House, to the garden which my wife had planted
there.

The splitting of the sago palm proved a work of
great labour, but was at length accomplished by
persevering, upwards of four hours, with such tools
as we had. Our next work was to separate the true
sago from the refuse, which we then dried on a cloth
in the sun, and tied up to carry home with us. The
rest of the day we spent in loading our cart, and
collecting everything together for an early start
homeward on the morrow. The two halves of the
sago palm we found were sufficiently light, notwith-
standing their unwieldy size, to be placed on the
cart; and darkness having by this time set in, we
kindled our watch-fires, and withdrew for the night.

Next morning we were in motion at an early hour.
Our young buffalo seemed to have already conceived
a liking for the cow; and when harnessed alongside
of it, he supplied in some degree the want of our
truant ass. Our water-pipes somewhat impeded our
progress, and Fritz and Jack were sent on before to
eut down such bushes or stems as stood in the way.
We reached the candle-berry trees, and halted tn
add our sacks of berries to the cart load. Our next
resting-place was at the India-rubber trees. We
found our calabashes much less filled than we had
anticipated, but they contained sufficient for the first
experiment I had in view.
178 SAGO MANUFACTORY,

Renewing our journey, we were presently dis-
turbed, while making our way through the guava
wood, by the violent barking of the dogs, which
were in the van along with Fritz and Jack. Pre-
sently the two boys appeared making towards us
somewhat to my alarm. The dogs were barking
furiously, and trying to make their way into a
thicket, in which Fritz assured me he had detected
a wild beast lurking as large as our buffalo. Dread-
ing the attack of some fierce animal, I had loaded
my gun with ball, and was about to fire into the
thicket, when Jack, who had, with his usual self-
command, been cautiously creeping towards the
thicket, now surprised us all by bursting into a
hearty fit of laughter. “It is nothing more,” said
he, “than that perverse old sow, which seems never
wearied of playing off her tricks on us!” With a
comical mixture of irritation and mirth, we now
cleared an opening in the thicket, and found that it
was indeed our own sow, but no longer alone, for
seven lively little pigs, littered only a few days before,
were running about her, and contending for a share
of her favours. She grunted an amicable recogni-
tion of us, to which we replied by giving her some
potatoes and cassava bread. We were divided in
opinion about leaving the young family behind, or
carrying the whole off with us to Falcon’s Nest; but
we decided on leaving them for the present where
they were.

At length we reached Falcon’s Nest, which we al-
SAGO MANUFACTORY. 179

ready regarded with all the tender feelings of home;
nor was the feeling lessened by the obvious satisfaction
with which our return was hailed by our various
animals, which crowded rownd us to receive their
expected supplies. We distributed among them
their most favourite food, and then set to work on
various houschold duties. I tied up the young buf-
falo, so as to accustom it to restraint, and also saw
that the jackall eub was properly secured. Fritz
chose a perch for his eagle, where he fastened it by
means of a stout cord, of sufficient length to allow it
freedom of motion; but having then imprudently
removed the bandage from its eyes, it raised its head,
erected its feathers, and, before any of us were aware
of what it was about, it made a dart at our poor
parrot, which was perched on a neighbouring branch,
and had struck its talons into it before we could
interfere. Fritz was so indignant at the loss of his
little favourite, that he would have killed its destroyer
forthwith; but Ernest remonstrated with him, and
told him it was entirely owing to his own rashness
in removing the bandage prematurely. Ernest then
offered that, if his brother would part with the eagle,
he would undertake to train it; but this he was
equally disinclined to; and as they were contesting
the point with some appearance of irritation, I inter-
posed, and reminded Fritz of the dog in the manger,
which would neither Ict the ox eat of the hay nor
use it himself. The better feelings of Fritz soon
prevailed. He begged his brother to teach him the
(30) 12
180 SAGO MANUFACTORY.

proper method of training the eaglc, and offered to
present to him the monkey. This Ernest readily
agreed to. Ye told him that faleoners always keep
their young birds hooded for six weeks, till they
are completely tamed. ‘TI shall try, however,” he
added, ‘a more expeditious process, which I re-
member to have read of the Caribs employing.”
He then produced some tobaceo, of which we had
found a considerable supply in the sailors’ chests.
This he burned below the branch upon which the
eagle was perched, at first somewhat to his brother’s
amusement, as he looked upon it as a hoax. The
bird, however, soon became calm and quite motion-
less. Ernest then replaced the bandage on its eyes,
after which he puffed the smoke about its head and
nostrils, till it became stupified, and nearly as still
as a stuffed bird. The same process, repeated for
several days, completely suececded, and Fritz, ac-
knowledging that his eagle grew tamer every day,
the monkey was resigned to Ernest by universal
consent.

The next day we set to work to fix the bamboos
which we had brought home as props for our young
trees. This oceupied us during the whole day, while
ow work was enlivened by the conversation sug-
gested by our employment. An inquiry by Fritz,
2s to whether our fruit trees were wild, had excited
the mirth of his lively but thoughtless brother Jack,
who asked him, somewhat saucily, if he thought
trees were to be tamed like eagles or buffaloes? This
SAGO MANUFACTORY. 181

led me to explain to them the process of grafting,
and the culture of fruit-trees. I next endeavoured to
trace out, as well as I could remember, the various
countries from whence they had been originally
brought. Our work proceeded actively while thus
employed, and we returned with keen appetites to
a pleasant repast of our smoke-dried buffalo beef,
accompanied with a dish prepared of the tender
leaves of the cabbage palm.

After dinner a subject was renewed which had
repeatedly formed a topic of conversation between
my wife and me. This was the construction of a
flight of steps, or some other permanent means of
aceess to our lodging in the tree. The rope-ladder
was a tedious mode of approach, and not only liable
to accident, but scarcely admitted of their carrying
anything up or down with them; while they must
look forward to the rainy season, when they would
necessarily be confined almost entirely to their tree-
house, and would require frequently to be descend-
ing, and climbing back to it. The impossibility of
constructing a flight of steps of such great length
had always compelled me to abandon the idea. We
had observed, however, that a swarm of bees built
their nest in the trunk, and this, coupled with other
indications, led me to conceive that it was hollow, in
which case the construction of a flight of steps within
it was not likely to prove so difficult a matter.
Having resolved to test this, the boys lost not a
moment, but jumping up, they set to work with sticks
182 THE STAIRCASE.

and hammers to sound the tree, while Jack, ever
the foremost, mounting on one of the large arching
trunks, thrust his stick into a hole. The result
threatened to be of the most serious kind. The bees,
disturbed by our attack, issued in a swarm, and
presently the cries and screams of the boys brought
my wife and myself to their aid. We dressed their
wounds as well as we could; and I took the hint to
carry out another project I had long entertained.
Selecting a large calabash we had prepared for the
purpose, I mounted it on a stand, and covered it with
a slanting straw-roof, so as to make a nice bec-hive.
This was not completed. without the aid of my wife’s
candles; and as we were glad to get the boys to bed
and asleep, I deferred further proceedings till the
following day.

CHAPTER XXIII.

THE STAIRCASE.

Next morning I awoke the boys an hour before
dawn, to assist me in removing the bees from the
trunk of our tree. Our first work was to stop up
with clay all the holes in the tree, with the exception
of the one through which the bees were wont to
enter. I next took a tobacco pipe, and having filled
and lighted it, I inserted it into the hole, and covered
it round with clay. I then set to work, puffing the
TiiE STAIRCASE. 183

fuines of tobacco briskly into the nest. At first the
bees made a considerable buzzing, and had it not
been for our precautions, would no doubt have soon
repeated the work of the previous evening. By-and-
by, however, all was still, We now proceeded to
eut out a piece of the trunk, about three feet square,
immediately below the hole by which the bees
entered. Having completely detached this, I repeated
the fumigation before removing it, and then taking
out the piece, we found the whole hollow filled with
wax-comb and honey. I cut out the honey-combs
carefully, and put them into our calabash vessels and
a cask we had washed and prepared on purpose. In
the upper part I at length reached one piece of the
comb to which the bees were hanging in clusters,
and this I carefully removed to the large calabash
constructed as a bee-hive. We then carefully closed
up the cask and all the vessels containing the honey,
that they might not attract the bees, while I placed
some hot embers upon one of the iron plates, which
I disposed in the hollow of the tree, and on this [
sprinkled tobacco from time to time, so as to fill
the hollow trunk with the fumes. By-and-by some
symptoms of life began to appear among the bees,
and they at first seemed inclined to return to their
old quarters; but the fumes of the tobacco effectually
scared them away, and the queen bee having for-
tunately been removed with the remainder to the
calabash hive, they settled quietly after a time in
their new habitation, We then carefully separated
184 THE STAIRCASE.

the wax from the honey, straining off the latter into
the cask, in a pure and very attractive state, while
the wax was laid aside in a solid cake, to be used
along with our vegetable wax for our domestic
manufactures.

We had now removed the chief obstacle in the
way of our further proceedings. J ascended the
tree, and making a hole in the trunk near the great
branches on which the floor of our dwelling rested,
I inserted a long stick and found it was quite hollow.
I then took a long line, to which I had attached a
stone, and dropping it in by this opening, I found
that it descended without interruption to the root.
It was obvious, therefore, this tree was one of those
which derives all its nourishment through the bark,
as, notwithstanding its hollow trunk, it exhibited
every appearance of the most vigorous luxuriance.
My greatest difficulty seemed now removed. De-
scending once more, I proceeded to cut an opening
in the trunk of the tree on the side towards the sea,
of the same size as the door we had brought away
from the cabin of the ship. Through this I inserted
along palm-tree stem, and fixing it upright, we cut
a number of barrel-staves of the requisite length, and
fastened them between this and the hollow sides of
the tree, so as to make a regular spiral stair. A
second, third, and fourth palm-stem had to be added
before we reached the top. These we raised by
means of our block and tackle, cutting a hole in
each case for their admission, which also served as
THE STAIRCASE, 183

windows to light and ventilate the stair. [rom day
to day we continued our work. I cut down the old
planks of the ship’s deck, and filled up the open
spaces between each step so as to add to the strength
and durability of the whole. We also placed ropes
down the sides to form a hand-rail. TI fixed the doors
into the entrance, with the complete frame which we
had brought along with them, so that we had a
handsome and complete entrance, with locks, hinges,
bolts, and bars. Into the openings made round the
trunk of the tree, I next inserted the windows we
had brought from the cabin of the ship, and then
cutting another doorway at the top of the trunk on
the side towards our dwelling, I made a sloping
flight of steps, closed in at the sides, so that we had
a complete and easy access from our lofty chamber
to the ground. The construction of this flight of
steps formed our principal occupation for some
weeks, and when it was finished we derived great
pleasure from ascending and descending by ita
means. We did not, however, labour at it uninter-
ruptedly, nor in such a way as to convert our work
into an oppressive toil. Different occupations re-
lieved us from time to time, and various domestic
incidents lightened and diversified our proceedings.

A few days after we had begun our stair, Bill
gave birth to puppies. From these I selected the
most vigorous-looking male and female, and drowned
the rest, as they must have become burdensome to
us for food. Our goat also about the same time had
186 THE STAIRCASE,

two kids, and five little lambs were running after
their mothers; so that our flocks were in no danger
of disappearing. We had brought from the wreck a
quantity of small bells, conceiving they might be
of use in bartering with savages. These we now
attached to the necks of the sheep, in order to guide
us in pursuit of them, should they stray—Hke our
unfaithful ass

The training of the young buffalo also supplied
us with occupation in leisure hours, The incision
1 had made through its nostrils having healed, I
passed a stick through it, according to a practice of
the Caffres for a similar purpose; and by means of
this I could guide it, like a horse by bit and bridle.
Finding that I thus had it completely under control,
I resolved to break it in for riding as well as draw-
ing. At first I made a point of leading it while one
of the boys mounted, but by-and-by we made a
saddle for it, and all the boys tried in turn to mount
and ride our singular steed. It went with great
swiftness, and was at first difficult to manage; but
we not only acquired greater skill by practice, but
the animal grew more tractable and docile, and
being treated with kindness, became familiar with
all of us.

Fritz meanwhile pursued his system of training of
his e 2 occasionally receiving a hint from Ernest
when his own efforts failed of success, so that = ough
time he “had learned it to perch on his wris so
could even trast it without a string, eee thst if
THE STAIRCASE. 187

would return at his call. Ie learned it also to fly
at game like a faleon, chiefly by feeding it on small
birds, which he placed in various positions, and made
it strike at them when hungry. Nor was the more
phlegmatic Ernest uninfluenced by such examples.
The monkey having become his exclusive property
he resolved to learn it some more useful oecupatior
than merely amusing by its mimicry. For this
purpose he constructed a little hamper or creel with
rushes, and attached it by a strap to its back. This
was at first resisted with every demonstration of
dislike; but as there was no escape, the monkey
by-and-by grew familiar with it, and being supplicd
with favourite morsels frequently dropped into it, he
learned at length even to put it on himself. Thus
equipped, Ernest taught him to mount the cocoa-nut
trees, and others of the lofty palms, for such fruit as
he wanted, and thus in a short while, from being the
idlest, he became one of the most useful of our de-
pendents. He learned, however, to look on Ernest
as his especial master, and to obey him implicitly,
being controlled alike by feelings of love and fear.
One of my own minor occupations during this
period was the manufacture of candles. I mixed
the bees’-wax with that obtained from the candle-
berries, adding to them a little tallow. The inge-
nious Jack had suggested an additional improvement.
Some of the canes which he had selected for candle-
sticks he proposed should be employed as moulds.
After various experiments, I found the pith of a plant
188 THE STAIRCASE.

which formed a very good substitute for the cotton
wick, and we had the satisfaction of seeing neatly-
moulded candles burning brightly on the table each
night. I next set about my caoutchouc shoemaking,
while I encouraged the boys to exercise their inge-
nuity by making clay moulds of bottles and various
other useful objects, on which they laid the caout-
chouc, as I had formerly described. I adopted a
more effectual method of securing a pair of well-
fitted boots. Taking a pair of my old worsted stock-
ings, I filled them with sand, and covered this with
a layer of clay, which I dried in the sun. To this f
attached a stout sole of buffalo-leather, studded with
tacks, which helped to fasten it to the stocking. I
then poured the liquid gum over this, so as to make
it adhere to the stocking. I next overlaid the entire
stocking with successive coats of the caoutchoue till
it was of sufficient thickness, and when the whole
was dry and firm, I shook out the sand, broke off
the hardened clay, and found myself in possession of
a strong flexible pair of waterproof boots, which fitted
me as comfortably as the most finished workmanship
of a European tradesman. The boys were impatient
to be similarly supplied, but I was anxious to ascer-
tain the relative durability of the leather and caout-
chouc. J therefore made a pair for Fritz from the
skin which I had taken from the buffalo’s legs, only
employing the caoutchouc to fill up the seams. They
cost me, however, much more labour, and proved,
after all, so clumsy and unsatisfactory a job, that
THE WILD Ass. 189

Fritz got laughed at by his brothers in attempting
to run in his awkward and misshapen boots.

With the sago-palin trunk we next constructed a
water-work with the help of a dam we threw across
Falcon Stream; so that we had a supply of water
brought almost to the foot of the tree, where it was
received in the tortoise-shell trough, and thence passed
away, when not used, by a channel which led to the
pool we had constructed for the ducks and geese.
The water, indeed, was liable to be somewhat heated
from exposure to the sun, but with every disad-
vantage we found the acquisition one of very great
value.

CHAPTER XXIY.

THE WILD ASS,

OnE morning, while engaged in the construction of
our stair, we were disturbed by sounds of a most
unwonted character, which proceeded from the neigh-
bouring wood. I dreaded the attack of some beasts
of prey, and the dogs seemed, by their manner, to
be preparing for an assault. I therefore put their
spiked collars and guards on them, and directed the
boys to get our fire-arms ready, and prepare for a
vigorous defence, while I assembled our cattle be-
neath the tree, so as to have them within range, and
covered by our fire. The boys looked out in eager
expectation, and Jack made no concealment of his
190 THE WILD ASS.

hope that he would see a lion at last, vowing that
nothing would please him better than to obtain a
near view of the king of beasts. The strange and
discordant noises were soon renewed, and many con-
jectures were hazarded as to their cause.

Fritz had been listening with earnest attention to
the sounds that alarmed us, while his brothers were
discussing their cause, when suddenly throwing down
his gun, he exclaimed, after a hearty laugh, “I do
believe this horrible monster is nothing else than
our own ass, who has repented of his faithless de-
sertion, and thus announces his return!’ At this
instant the sound was repeated close at hand, and
excited the utmost mirth among all as we recognised
the unmistakeable he-haws of our old servant, which
had occasioned us such a fright. Soon after we saw
him make his appearance among the trees, but to
our surprise and delight he was not alone. A fine
young onagra, or wild ass, was at his side, which I
immediately conceived the most earnest desire to
obtain possession of. I knew indeed that naturalists
have affirmed it to be untameable, but I longed to
make the experiment, having already formed my
own plans with considerable confidence in their
practicability.

I descended from the tree, taking Fritz with me,
and giving strict orders to the rest to remain behind
and make not the slightest noise. { then procured
a long cord, one end of which I secured to the root
of a tree, while I made at the other end a running
THE WILD ASS. 191

noose, held open by a slight twig. This I entrusted
to Fritz, as being nimbler and more agile than my-
self. He had already got hold of his lasso, and was
with difficulty induced to adopt mine in preference,
till I explained to him the risk we must run of losing
it altogether if it was not secured in the very first
attempt. I also split a piece of bamboo, and tied it
tightly at one end, so as to supply me with pincers.
llaving then given Fritz directions how to proceed,
he cautiously advanced, carrying the loop in his
hand and holding a calabash filled with oats. When
he had advanced nearly to the length of the cord,
the wild ass started and sprung backward, with ears
erect, as if ready for flight. Fritz, however, stood
quite motionless, and the wild animal, after looking
for some time on probably the first human figure it
had ever seen, at length began to browse. Our own
ass was, meanwhile, watching him with a half shy
look, and on his holding out the calabash with its
old favourite food, it ran up to him to eat it. Its
companion followed, snuffing the air, and pausing
with a startled look, at every few steps, till it at
length drew so near, that Fritz, who was watching
his opportunity, threw the noose, and the prize was
ours. Startled by the motion of his hand, it made
off immediately, but the cord being round its neck,
it was drawn so tight by the rapid motion of the
affrighted animal, that it was thrown to the ground
and almost strangled. I hastened forward imme-
diately, and after slipping our ass’s halter over its
192 . THE WILD ASS.

head, and getting the bridle between its teeth, I
relaxed the cord sufficiently to let it recover its
breath. I then placed the split bamboo on its nose,
drawing a string tightly at the open end so as to
compress it, much in the same way that farriers do
with a young horse when shoeing it for the first
time. I then tied to the halter a long rope, the two
ends of which I fastened to opposite trees, and left
the wild animal to recover itself.

By this time the whole family had descended, and
were admiring the graceful form and finely-propor-
tioned limbs of our prisoner. It had lain during the
whole of my proceedings, with its tongue hanging
out of its mouth, as if strangled. It soon recovered,
however, and sprung to its feet: it reared and kicked
in the most violent manner, struggling to escape ;
but the pain which the pincers gave it whenever it
threw up its head forced it to moderate its violence,
and after a few ineffectual struggles it lay down
again. Fritz and I now tightened the opposite ends
of the rope which we had secured to the halter, so as
to allow it as little room to move as possible, while
it also enabled us to approach it with less danger.
We next secured Master Dedrel, our old truant ass,
and having got a halter on his head, I tied him up
near the wild ass, with a sufficient supply of food
at hand to secure his contentment with a return to
captivity.

We had now abundant work before us in the
attempt to train the onagra. The boys confidently
THE WILD ASS. 193

anticipated success, and reflected with satisfaction on
the temporary loss of our ass, which had led to our
securing such a prize. .I was less confident of suc-
cess, but resolved to leave no means untried for its
attainment. I allowed the nippers to remain on its
nose, replacing them daily after I had allowed it to
feed, and making use of the cord tightened round its
neck to subdue and control it. Without these it
would have been altogether impossible for any of us
to approach it, so violent were its struggles, rearing,
kicking, and attempting to bite. I perceived, how-
ever, that it was a young animal, evidently not yet
fully grown, and had the greater hope on that account
of ultimate success. Hunger and thirst I found had
their usual effects in subduing its wild nature, and
its actions and looks gradually appeared less wild as
it became accustomed to my bringing it food. As it
still continued, however, to be liable to paroxysms of
fury, I made a muzzle so as to prevent it from biting,
and fastened its legs by a stout cord, attached to
them so loosely as to admit of its walking, without
its being able to rear or kick behind. By this means
we were able to approach it without danger, and it
gradually grew so familiar with us that it suffered
us to stroke and handle it without evincing impatience
or displeasure. We next accustomed it to bear
loads, by rolling up a large sail-cloth with objects of
gradually increasing weight inclosed, which we laid
across its back when feeding it. I continued for
weeks to pursue, with the most persevering patience,
194 THE WILD Ass.

every means I could think of for subduing this
beautiful but wild and fierce animal. At length it
seemed to be so far accustomed to subjection that IT
resolved to try to mount it. I put the strongest bit
we had in its mouth, and retained the cords on its
legs so as to restrain its motions. Still its wild
nature seemed only momentarily subdued, and when-
ever it obtained any unusual degree of freedom, it
seemed to become fierce and unmanageable as at the
first, so that I sometimes thought of abandoning the
hopeless attempt of taming it, and restoring it to
liberty. I remembered, however, one expedient
which I had read off, as resorted to by the natives
of South America under similar circumstances. I
watched a favourable opportunity, and leaping on the
back of the onagra, as it was standing with head
erect and ears thrown back, I seized the long ear of
the affrighted animal between my teeth, and heid it
till I had pierced it through. The animal reared
straight up on its hind legs, while I retained my hold
on its ear, and then coming slowly down again on its
fore feet I released my hold. It. gave one or two
inpatient leaps, but gradually subsided into a trot,
and from this time we felt that we had obtained the
mastery. The boys tried him one after another, and
were so delighted with his graceful and easy motions,
that they gave him the name of Lightfoot, though
we did not venture for some time to remove the cords
from his limbs, se as to allow of their free and unim-
peded use. It was with no slight feeling of pride
THE WILD ASS. 195

and gratification that I at length saw Fritz leap on
the back of this graceful animal, freed from all its
restraints, and gallop about with it, guiding it, and
leading it back completely obedient to his will.

During the time devoted to the training of Light-
foot, our poultry-yard had received considerable acces-
sions. Three successive broods of chickens had filled
it with lively and cheerful groups of little feathered
occupants, to the great delight of my good wife, who
seemed to consider them a far greater addition to
our security and comfort than the young buffalo or
wild ass. These indeed, she admitted, were of great
use and value when compared with such foolish
acquisitions as the eagle or jackall, but she felt well
assured, she said, that when the rainy season, which
we were all anticipating, set in, we should find our
well-stocked poultry-yard the best resource we pos-
sessed.

Various causes now united to remind me of the
necessity of making provision for the approach of
this winter season of tropical climates, and we now
set to work with diligence to complete a plan I had
long had in view, of constructing a complete set of
stables and offices for our live stock. We began by
making a roof by extending bamboos across the large
arching roots that surrounded our tree, supporting
them where necessary by posts. Over this we platted
straw and reeds, and pitched the whole, filling it in
round the trunk of the tree with clay, so as to make
it completely water-tight. This we closed in all

(30) 13
196 THE WILD ASS,

round, dividing it into separate stalls and apartments,
and constructing doors to each. The roof was suffi-
ciently high to admit of an upper floor, which we
laid off as a hay-loft and store-rooms for keeping
provisions dry; and we next employed ourselves in
laying in all sorts of needful provisions, both for our-
selves and our live stock, preparatory to the wet
season, when we would no longer be able to obtain
them.

One afternoon, as we were returning with the cart
loaded with an abundant supply of potatoes, which
the ass and the buffalo were drawing together, as
there was still some time before evening, the thought
struck me to send home my wife with the younger
boys in the cart, while I proceeded with Fritz and
Ernest to gather a supply of sweet acorns. Ernest,
as usual, had his monkey on his shoulder, while
Fritz was mounted on his favourite Lightfoot. We
soon reached the fcrest, and Fritz having secured
the onagra to a tree, we all set to work to fill a sack
with the fallen acorns. The monkey was meanwhile
looking about him as usual, and presently we were
startled by a noise in a neighbouring thicket, ac-
companied by the cries of birds, and the sounds of
their struggling, and the flapping of their wings.
Ernest hastened to see what was the matter, and
presently called us to come quickly to his aid. His
restless favourite had stolen upon a beautiful maie
and female heath-fowl seated on their nest, and was
only prevented devouring their eggs by their violent
THE WILD ASS. 197

resistance. Fritz ran to his assistance, and speedily
secured the two beautiful birds, the cock being pre-
cisely similar to the one he had formerly killed.
Ernest had had enough to do to hold in the rebellious
monkey, but he now filled his hat with the wild-fowls’
eggs, while I helped Fritz to tie the legs and wings
of the birds. Ernest was overjoyed at his prize, and
T was gratified to observe that his pleasure was
chiefly derived from the joy he anticipated it would
give to his mother to obtain such a valuable addition
to our poultry-yard.

We now completed our collection of acorns, and
Fritz mounted onee more on Lightfoot, and placing
them in front of him aeross its back, set off at a
gallop to convey the news of our prize to his mother.
‘We lost no time in placing the heath-fowls’ eggs
under a brooding hen, as the female bird was too
shy and frightened to hatch them in captivity. In
a few days we had the great satisfaction of seeing the
brood of wild chickens hatched and running about
after their foster mother. They ate with avidity of
the bruised acorns, soaked in milk, and the other
kinds of food which my wife was accustomed to give
to our own poultry; and we found no difficulty in
rearing this valuable and unexpected addition to our
live stock. As they grew up, I took care to cut
‘their wings so as to prevent them taking to flight.
By-and-by the old pair became sufficiently domesti-
cated to be allowed to go at large under the same
restraints, and both the old and young game fowls
198 THE RAINY SEASON.

were to be seen daily setting out with the rest of our
poultry in search of food, and returning at night to
the roost which I had prepared for them in one of
the lofts erected under our tree.

CHAPTER XXV.
THE RAINY SEASON.

Ix one of our.excursions Ernest had brought home
with him some long prickly-pointed leaves, which
he presented to Francis, telling him they would do
to make swords with. Francis played with them
for a little while till the novelty was over, and then
threw them aside. Fritz, happening to pick up some
of these withered leaves, remarked how pliable they
had become, and proposed to his brother to plait
them into a whip. This led me to examine them
more closely, when I was delighted to observe that
they split into long tenacious fibres, so that I had
little doubt we had thus accidentally discovered a
plant of the same nature as the well-known phormium
tenax, or flax-plant of New Zealand. I hastened to
communicate this novel discovery to my wife, who
received the intelligence with the utmost joy.
‘“‘Hasten every one of you,” said she, “without a
moment’s delay, and gather me as many of these
leaves as you can procure. It is the most valuable
discovery we have made; and if I have only enough
THE RAINY SEASON. 199

of it, trust to me for providing you with thread,
string, stockings, shirts, and, indeed, clothes of every
sort.” I could not help smiling at the flights of
fancy my good wife indulged in on the first mention
of flax. The boys, however, rejoiced in such an
opportunity of gratifying their mother’s wishes, and,
without a word to me of their plans, Fritz was pre-
sently mounted on Lightfoot, and Jack on the buffalo,
and both set off at their greatest speed to procure the
requisite supplies.

In their absence my wife began to explain to me
all the wants already suggested to her mind. Looms
and knitting-frames were among the chief of these,
and I promised to do my utmost to contrive all the
machinery she required. In a short time our forag-
ing party returned, each bringing a good load of the
precious plant, which they threw down beside their
mother with undisguised satisfaction; and now we
had to muster all our knowledge with a view to its
proper preparation. Wee all decided that steeping it
must be the first process, and we accordingly em-
ployed ourselves during the remainder of the day in
tying up the leaves in bundles. Next morning the
ass was yoked into the smaller cart, which was
loaded with these bundles, and the whole cavalcade
-set off for Flamingo Marsh with shovels and pick-
axes. On reaching the marsh we prepared a proper
receptacle for our flax, which we arranged in the
most convenient order, and loaded with stones, so
as to keep it below the water till it should be suf-
200 THE RAINY SEASON.

ficiently steeped. While this was in progress, we
had an opportunity of examining the ingenious and
singular construction of the flamingoes’ nests, which
consist of a cone of strongly cemented clay, with a
hollow in the top for receiving the eggs, and raised
so high that the female can sit on them with her long
legs in the water.

We allowed the flax to steep for about a fortnight
in the water, at the end of which time I yielded to
my wife’s importunities, and had it taken out. It
was then spread in the sun, where it dried so rapidly
from the extreme heat, that we were able to take it
home the same evening. Much, however, had to be
done in the way of preparing combs, beetles, reels
&e., before it could be passed through the succeeding
processes preparatory to manufacture, and we there-
fore stowed it away for the present, as the premonitory
symptoms of the approach of the rainy season already
warned as to lay in our stock of provisions for our-
selves and the animals. Our cart and barrows, and
the valuable addition we had made to our beasts of
burden, greatly facilitated our proceedings. We
laboured incessantly with all the spirit of a harvest
home, bringing in waggon-loads of potatoes, manioe
root, cassavas, sweet acorns, sugar-canes, cocoa-nuts,
with grass and other fodder for the cattle. We also
deemed it a suitable time for putting our seed in the
ground; and taking advantage of that which we
had broken up in removing the potato and cassava
roots, we sowed the whole of our European corn and
THE RAINY SEASON. 201

wheat. We also planted a considerable area with
sugar-canes, and laid out some plantations of the
most valuable palms in the immediate vicinity of
Falcon’s Nest. These various proceedings kept us
in constant and cheerful employment; nor did we
grudge the occasional interruption of the regular
hours of meals, or of rest, as we looked forward to
being speedily compelled to confine ourselves to
our dwelling. Already various sudden showers
warned us that the winter of the tropics was at hand.
The weather also became much more variable, and
the nights exceedingly chilly. With all our exer-
tions, however, the change came sooner than we had
calculated on, and before we were quite prepared for
it. For some days the sky continued cloudy and
overcast, and the wind began to blow in violent
gusts. The sea also became greatly changed, and
the noise of its stormy surf beating against the
shore was heard from our dwelling, warning us of
the approaching storms of winter.

At length the clouds seemed to burst over our
heads—the rain fell in torrents day and night—-the
rivers rapidly rose till the waters of Falcon Stream
and Jackall River met, and the whole surrounding
country seemed transformed into alake. Fortunately,

_the site we had chosen was sufticiently elevated to be
beyond the flood, and our group of trees accordingly
remained like a little island amid the waste of waters.
We soon found, however, that our elevated abode was
altogether unsuited for a tropical winter. The rain
202 THE RAINY SEASON.

soon penetrated into it on every hand, while the
hurricanes that blew rendered it impossible to keep
up the awning, and even threatened sometimes to
carry the whole away. We were forced, therefore,
to retreat to an apartment in the erection we had
made at the foot of the tree for our animals and stores.
These, therefore, we crowded together as much as
possible, so as to leave us some spare space, but with
it all we were wretchedly hampered for room. When
the fire was kindled we were stifled with smoke ; and
when we opened the door the rain and damp wind
gave new causes of discomfort—so that, for the first
time since we had settled at Falcon’s Nest, we heartily
sighed for the comforts of our old Swiss home.

In this state of things our staircase proved of the
greatest value. By its means we were not only able
to remove our bed-clothes and other valuables from
the upper lodging without exposing them to rain, but
it furnished a most convenient store-room where many
of them were left for the season; while, during the
day, my wife latterly retreated to it, and, seated on
one of the steps near a window, with little Francis at
her feet, employed herself in such sedentary occupa-
tions as had been reserved for this. Fortunately the
cold was not severe, though the continued dampness
rendered fires indispensable. We employed them,
however, as seldom as possible, and with cassava
bread and milk, preserved ortolans, smoked beef, &c.,
our table was by no means deficient. Every morning
we sent out all the animals that could stand the ex-
THE RAINY SEASON. 203

posure to the wet, including the buffalo and wild ass,
which we shackled sufficiently to prevent their wan-
dering far, though, without swimming, they could
not escape from the precincts of the tree. It was one
of the duties of Fritz and myself to go out every
evening to drive them back ; and as in this operation
we daily got thoroughly drenched, my wife contrived
to manufacture a sort of smock-frock and cowl, which
we laid over with caoutchouc, and thus rendered
completely waterproof.

By taking as much from the accommodation of the
animals as could well be spared, and removing all
unnecessary articles to the stair, we by-and-by found
our accommodation considerably improved. I had
fixed a glass window in the wall, but the gloom of
the weather, and the overshadowing branches of the
trees, greatly abridged our light. Fortunately we had
laid in a good store of candles; and, after having
seen to our animals, baked our cassava bread, and
done such of the duties as had now become almost a
daily routine, we all looked forward with pleasure to
drawing round the candle at night. The boys read
aloud by turns from the Bible, or amused themselves
drawing with a burnt stick such animals or plants as
struck their fancy. Their good mother meanwhile
plied her needle in the constant repair of our clothes;
while I busied myself in writing my journal, and
sometimes made the boys copy parts of it for practice,
as well as amusement.

We soon found how much we had to learn of the
204 THE RAINY SEASON,

peculiar requirements of this strange country. Our
supply of dry firewood was so small, that we found
it necessary to economize as much as possible. A
still more serious matter was the failure of our hay
and leaves, so that we were forced to let the buffalo
and wild ass, as well as the swine, provide for them-
selves, while we fed the European cattle on the sweet
acorns and roots which had been laid up for ourselves.
We found, however, that they not only took this
novel food with great relish, but it gave a very plea-
sant flavour to the milk, of which we had now an
abundant supply from the ewes and the goats, as well
as from the cow. We also found the value of our
well-stocked poultry-yard. We were occasionally
regaled, on our return from one of our forced excur-
sions in the rain, by a roasted duck, or a dish of
pigeons prepared in cassava paste, or some similar
treat suggested by the thoughtfulness of our kind and
faithful steward. Our churn, also, was not idle, and
our store of honey proved another source of comfort
and variety; so that we were not without some
comforts to alleviate our confinement and privations.
We had a large family to provide for; and with our
four dogs, the jackall, the eagle, and the monkey, the
remains of the daily meal speedily disappeared.
Amid such difficulties and discomforts, the necessity
of providing a proper winter house frequently formed
the subject of our evening’s conversation, Even my
good gentle wife lost temper sometimes under the
irritating inconveniences we were perplexed with,
THE SALT CAVERN. 205

and urged that it should be our first work, though
she still stipulated that Falcon’s Nest should be our
summer residence. The discussion of the various
projects for our future accommodation sufficed to
beguile our thoughts from present privations. Fritz
produced the example of Robinson Crusoe, and urged
that we should cut a dwelling for ourselves, as he did,
in the solid rock. The reference to Crusoe led us to
reflect with gratitude and thanksgiving on ow own
more fortunate lot in being thus preserved for each
other’s aid and comfort, instead of being abandoned
to such solitude as he endured. The idea of Fritz
was well received, and we talked over the possibility
of making our winter dwelling among the cliffs of
Tent House. ‘ Perhaps,” said Fritz, “we may yet
discover a convenient cavern such as that which so
long served for the retreat of Crusoe.” The idea
seemed to suggest new hope to all, and we resolved
that our first walk on the returning of fine weather
should be the exploring of the rocks, with a view to
the construction of a substantial winter dwelling.

CHAPTER XXVI.
THE SALT CAVERN,

At length, after many days of unbroken gloom, the
sky began to clear, the wind moderated, and the sun
once more refreshed the earth with his rays. We
206 THE SALT CAVERN.

emerged from our prison, and gazed on the verdant
earth and the bright sky with the liveliest tokens of
delight. The fresh verdure bursting forth appeared
to sympathize with our joy, and all nature seemed
awaking to life, while the blood circulated with un-
wonted freedom in our veins, as we were once more
able to return to active life and the exercises of the
open field. Already the promising aspect of all
around us banished the recollection of the weary
hours of the rainy winter from our minds. Our plan-
tations of young trees were thriving vigorously. The
seed which we had sown was shooting through the
moist earth, and all around us the bursting foliage of
the trees, and the cries of the brilliantly-plumaged
birds of the tropics replying to their mates, or busy
building their nests, gave animation and joy to the
scene.

Our first work was to restore our summer lodging
in the tree. Though cumbered with unsightly heaps
of broken twigs and damp leaves, it was uninjured
by the: winter’s storms, and we speedily restored it
to cheerfulness and comfort. The stair was cleared
of its lumber, the awning restored, and all the dis-
comforts of our winter dwelling forgot in the return
to this pleasant home. My wife was now impatient
to begin her flax-work. A beetle for the flax was
easily provided; and with the help of long nails for
teeth, I also contrived to make very tolerable card-
ing-combs, so that we were not long in reducing our
flax to a state fit for spinning. The manufacture of
THE SALT CAVERN. 207

a spinning-wheel and reel, however, was by no means
so easily accomplished ; but my wife was so eager for
them that I devoted all my ingenuity and perse-
verance to the task, and at length completed two
machines, which, though sufficiently rude and clumsy,
answered the purpose.

My wife, indeed, was delighted with them, and set
to work to spin with such eagerness, that she seemed
to grudge the time required for a walk, or even the
interruptions which the daily preparation of the family
meals made on her time. Little Francis busied him-
self in driving the reel while she was spinning, and
she would gladly have employed the whole family in
expediting her operations, but Ernest was the only
one of us who could be persuaded to forsake the
more laborious out-door work for this monotonous and
sedentary occupation.

One of our first proceedings was an excursion to
Tent House, to ascertain if it had suffered from the
winter’s rains. We found our old dwelling in a
deplorable state. The tent had been beaten down,
aud part of it washed away. A great part of our
provisions were completely spoiled, and the remainder
injured by the damp, so that they required much care
and labour to save them. Uappily our pinnace re-
mained uninjured in the place where we had secured
it; though our tub-boat had been knocked about so
much as to be rendered totally unserviceable. What
excited the greatest regret in my mind was the dis-
covery that two out of the three barrels of powder
208 THE SALT CAVERN,

left in the tent were rendered wholly useless. The
sight of such ravages redoubled the desire of all to
provide winter quarters, where we should no longer
be exposed to such irreparable losses.

It was an easier thing, as I began to reflect, to
resolve on the construction of our winter habitation
than to execute the project we had in view. I looked
along the surrounding cliffs in the vain hope of see-
ing any opening that would even diminish the labour
of excavation. It was indispensable, however, to
find some place of shelter, at least as a gunpowder
store, and I resolved to try what our united labours
could effect. After examining carefully the whole
neighbouring rocks, I selected a perpendicular cliff,
which was situated at a greater elevation, and com-
manded a beautiful view of the whole bay and the
two banks of the river. It was altogether a much
more attractive spot than Tent House. Fritz and
Jack had been impatient to begin our excavations;
and, though I feared we could never accomplish the
task of hewing out a dwelling, I thought it possible
that we might at least accomplish a sufficient recess
for a gunpowder store. I therefore invited them to
accompany me to the spot I had selected, and we set
off together, provided with pickaxes, crowbars, chisels,
and hammers, resolved to try what impression could
be made on the rock.

Our tools were fortunately well adapted for the
work; and having chalked out an entrance of suite
able size for our intended cave at a sufficient elevation,
THE SALT CAVERN. 209

we set to work vigorously on the cliff’ We were
resolved not to be easily daunted; but the rock was
hard, and the labour such as we were little accustomed
to; and when evening arrived we were utterly ex-
hausted, and yet had only penetrated a few inches
from the surface. We returned, however, on the
morrow, and renewed our work day after day.
When we had fairly penetrated beneath the outer
surface, our hopes were revived by finding that the
rock was a soft sandstone, which had hardened by
exposure to the weather, but within readily gave way
to our tools. We worked, therefore, with redoubled
ardour, and after a few days more had penetrated
about seven feet. As the space which we had marked
for the entrance was small, Jack and I acted as exca-
vators, while Fritz employed himself clearing away
the rubbish. One morning, as Jack was at work
below me, hammering away at a long crowbar in the
hope of loosening a large mass of rock, he suddenly
shouted, ‘Papa! papa! I have got through!”
“Through what?” said I, supposing the boy was
jesting ; “not through your hand I hope!” ‘No,
no, papa,” said he, ‘through the mountain!” On
this Fritz set up a loud laugh. “ Why not say
through the world at once! Stand aside till we get
a peep. We should see Europe through the hole!”
Meanwhile, however, Fritz had been examining the
object of his brother’s exclamations, and dropping
his bantering tone, he desired me to come down and
see, for his brother had certainly pierced to a hollow
210 THE SALT CAVERN.

part of the rock. I accordingly got down, and found,
on moving about the crowbar, that it could be pushed
io its full length with ease, while the rubbish it
displaced seemed to fall into a hollow beyond. . On
forcing away a considerable piece of rock, and insert-
ing a long pole into the hole, it became evident that
we had come upon a cavity of considerable size.
The boys were now eager to break away the rock and
ascertain its full extent, but I already felt a slight
giddiness, occasioned by breathing the foul air,
which I had little doubt was carbonic acid gas,
proceeding from the cave we had broken into. I
therefore warned them to desist for the present, and
directed them meanwhile to collect materials for kind-
ling a fire. I then took some dried grass, and setting
it in a blaze I threw it into the hole, where it was
immediately extinguished. Bundles of dried moss
were now lighted by the boys, and thrust blazing
into the recess, but always with the same effect. It
was obvious, therefore, that more effectual means
must be employed. We had brought from the wreck
a case full of hand grenades, rockets, blue lights,
and other fireworks, chiefly intended for making
signals. I despatched Fritz for these; and after
throwing in lighted grenades, which made a most
singular and loud reverberating noise, we lighted
some rockets and squibs, and fired them successively
into the cavern. It was obvious, from the way they
burned, that the explosion of the grenades had already
displaced a great portion of the impure air; and the
THE SALT CAVERN. 211

singular appearance which the showers of sparks,
and the beautiful colours produced by the blazing
rockets presented, looked as if troops of sprites and
fairies were gambling about the cavern, each carry-
ing a lighted lamp of varied and brilliant nue.

After having exhausted our fireworks, and waited
till all was once more in darkness, I again threw in
some bundles of lighted hay, which now blazed freely,
and showed that all danger from impure air was
removed. We were still, however, in total ignorance
of the depth or dimensions of the cavern, and I
therefore despatched Jack to Tent House for a sup-
ply of candles to explore it, not doubting but that
his lively account of our discovery would have the
effect of tempting my dear wife to quit her spinning-
wheel in order to see it for herself. Fritz and I
meanwhile busied ourselves in enlarging the entrance
and removing the rubbish, so as to afford a readier
access to it. Jack had to proceed to Falcon’s Nest,
but he executed his commission with such good will
that we had scarcely completed our labours when we
saw the whole cavaleade approaching. ‘The large
car drawn by the cow and ass was lumbering along
with all the speed that the unequally yoked pair
could be induced by their driver, Ernest, to muster,
while Jack came prancing along before them astride
on the buffalo, which he rode with the most fearless
confidence. As soon as Jack saw the car, with
his mother and brothers, fairly over Family Bridge,
he set off at full gallop, and, after alighting to in-

60) i4
212 THE SALT CAVERN.

spect our further progress, was ready to hand his
mother out.

I immediately lighted some of the candles which
they had brought, giving one to each, and taking
with me an additional supply, with flint and steel.
Thus provided, I led the way, followed by the whole
family, my wife and little Francis bringing up the
rear. We had advanced but a few steps into the
cavern when every feeling of curiosity or apprehension
was dissipated in gazing at the magnificent spectacle
disclosed to us. It seemed as if the walls and roof
of the cavern were set with diamonds, which sparkled
under the light of our tapers as if the whole were
anilluminated temple. Juge crystal pendants hung
suspended from the roof, or rose in masses from
below, forming altars, pillars, and colonnades, and
giving to the whole an aspect of some fairy palace of
romance.

As we acquired more confidence, we advanced
boldly into the cavern. It was a spacious grotto,
apparently perfectly free from damp, and with the
floor nearly level and covered with a fine white sand.
I already began to suspect the nature of the magnifi-
cent crystals which adorned our cave, and great was
my delight on breaking off one of them and putting
it to my mouth, to find that we were in a grotto of
rock-salt. Independently of all the advantages we
anticipated from the cavern, this discovery was one
of immense advantage to our cattle as well as our-
gelves, all our stock of salt‘having hitherto depended
THE SALT CAVERN, 213

on the precarious and unsatisfactory supplies left by
the evaporation of the sea-water in crevices of the
rocks, and which had to be separated from the sand
by a troublesome process before it could be used.
The only drawback to my entire satisfaction and
delight arose from observing some large pieces of
the crystallized salt which had evidently fallen from
the roof. The liability to the recurrence of such
accidents would necessarily expose the family to
great danger if we adopted this as our winter dwell-
ing; but on carefully examining the roof, and trying
in vain to knock off some of its pendant crystals by
means of long poles, and by firing off our guns
within the cave after all had left it but Fritz and
inyself, we became satisfied of the perfect security of
the whole. The fallen crystals had evidently been
reeently detached, and were no doubt occasioned by
the means employed by us for getting rid of the foul
air in the cave. We now began to plan the arrange-
ments needful for adapting our discovery to its
destined use, and with the usual effects of novelty
on young minds the majority were for the immediate
abandonment of Falcon’s Nest for the cave. My
wife and I, however, decided on adhering to the for-
mer as the most eligible summer quarters. Thither
we accordingly continued to return each night, being
no longer dependent on pedestrian journeyings,
while the day’s provisions were made ready for the
whole family at the intermediate station of Tent
Ilouse.
~214 THE CAVE DWELLING. °

CHAPTER XXVII.
THE CAVE DWELLING.

Tue inner portion of the rock which we had pierced
before reaching our magnificent grotto was so soft
that it could be cut with the greatest ease. As,
however, I anticipated that it would harden rapidly
on exposure to the air, I resolved to lose no time in
making such cuttings as appeared needful. The
Falcon’s Nest dwelling being no longer designed for
anything but a summer residence, I removed the
windows and door from the staircase, resolving to
replace the latter with one of bark, so 4s to conceal
it in case of the approach of savages, or the appear-
ance of enemies on the coast. Having marked out
the openings for the windows to suit the frames, we
soon cut through the rock, making grooves for fitting
them into. This was not effected without some
labour, but having found so much of our expected
toil thus providentially spared to us, we laboured
with cheerful good will to effect the necessary changes
for adapting it to our use.

Having supplied our grotto with the needful light,
T next proceeded to lay out its ample space for our
winter dwelling. My first step was to subdivide the
whole by one large partition. The right hand divi-
sion, which was designed for our own dwelling, I
again partitioned off into three rooms, the centre one
THE CAVE DWELLING. 215

of which was to be the common hall, or sitting-room,
with the boys’ bedroom on the one side and our own
on the other. The left portion of the cavern was
again divided into a kitchen, a large workshop, and
the stables, while the space behind these which
could not be lighted with windows formed large and
commodious cellars and store-rooms. The doors and
timber-work which we had brought from the ship
enabled us to fit up very complete partitions, with
doors opening from the rooms into the storehouse
and passages; and though our work went slowly
on, we did not doubt that it would be sufficiently
advanced to admit of our taking up our abode in it
before winter set in.

Our experience of the miseries of the rainy season
through which we had just passed, suggested many
useful arrangements in laying out this commodious
dwelling. In the kitchen I constructed a large fire-
place and chimney, piercing the rock above, and
completing a shaft so as to let the smoke eseape.
The work-room which adjoined the kitchen was so
large that we had ample room to stow away our
carts, barrows, &c., while the stable was subdivided
into four compartments, so that the various animals
of which our live stock now consisted could be kept
sufficiently apart. These various plans were not
effected without much time and labour, and we had
to satisfy ourselves with the accomplishment of the
most indispensable work, reserving much to be com-
pleted in the fitting up of the interior during the
216 TIE CAVE DWELLING.

unavoidable leisure of the following rainy season,
The removal of our various stores, both from Falcon’s
Nest and Tent House, and the proper disposal of
them in our new dwelling and store-rooms, were also
attended with much labour; but as we made a point
of bringing something with us every time that we
visited the cave, we found our work progress steadily
and cheerfully in our hands.

Our frequent residence at Tent House, in conse-
quence of our new employment, led to some im-
portant discoveries which we had not anticipated.
We frequently observed large turtles come ashore
to lay their eggs in the sand, by which means we
obtained an abundant supply of this dainty food; but
this only increased our desires, and we resolved to
try and obtain possession of the turtles also, that we
might have them served at our table occasionally.
So soon as we observed one of them ashore, one of
the boys was despatched by a circuitous route to
cut off its retreat towards the sea. Meanwhile we
cautiously approached the animal, and turning it
dexterously on its back, we passed a stout cord
through a hole in the shell,-and fastening this to a
stake driven firmly into the ground, it. was once
more set onits legs. The tortoise made immediately
for the water, but finding it could not get beyond its
tether, it by-and-by got reconciled to the limits thus
imposed on it, and being within the tide-mark, it
had no difficulty in obtaining food, while it was
ready for our use wheneyer we chose to take it. By
NEW PROJECTS AND DISCOVERIES. 217

this means we secured a plentiful store of the rarest
delicacies for our table.

The first important use to which our inexhaustible
stock of salt was turned was to preserve a supply of
herrings for ow winter store. One morning our
attention was attracted by a singular phenomenon.
Immense flocks of birds appeared to be hovering
over a part of the sea which was singularly agi-
tated, and appeared to glance at times as if covered
with flames of fire. This we soon discovered to
originate in the approach of vast shoals of herring
entering the bay. We lost no time in putting in for
a share of the spoil, and at the end of a few days we
had several barrels of fine herring salted and stored
away among our winter provisions. A still larger
quantity were slit up and smoked in a fire of green
moss, which effectually preserved them, and gave
them a very pleasant flavour. :

CHAPTER XXVIII.

NEW PROJECTS AND DISCOVERIES,

Tue completion of our dwelling proceeded amid
various interruptions, sometimes engrossing our chief
thoughts, while at other times it was made subsidiary
to other claims and duties. I had already observed
that the rock-salt in our grotto rested on a bed of

ypsum, and looked forward to the future use of it
218 NEW PROJECTS AND DISCOVERIES,

in the finishing of our dwelling. J was unwilling
to make any excavations within the cave, but having
learned of its existence, I was not long of detecting
its presence in an exterior angle of the rock, where
the working of it seemed to promise the opening of
another passage leading towards theworkshop. I took
some of the gypsum and burnt it in the kitchen fire.
I then collected it in a state of fine white powder,
and stored it away in casks for future use. I had
already formed the resolution of. constructing our
main partition walls with stone, and cementing them
with the prepared gypsum; and as we frequently
employed a spare hour in collecting and burning it,
we had soon a considerable supply laid aside.

About a month after the appearance of the her-
ring, we were visited by other shoals of fish, which
entered the bay, and even made their way to Jackall
River, for the purpose apparently of depositing their
spawn in the shallows. Jack was the first to observe
them, and ran to tell me that a flock of whales were
entering the river. They proved to include salmon,
trout, sturgeon, and other fishes unknown tous. We
immediately put all our means in force, and for some
days the fishery absorbed our whole attention. By
this means we added largely to our stores, drying
and salting the fish in various ways. On opening
the sturgeons I carefully extracted their large roes,
and prepared them separately, so as to form the
favourite European dish called caviare, of which we
soon had a comfortable supply laid up for winter.


CATCHING A TURTLE.
NEW PROJECTS AND DISCOVERIES. 219

Our fishing also supplied us with oil and isinglass,
from the latter of which I hoped to be able to form
a useful substitute for window panes, of which our
stock was very small.

Tn our fishing operations we had experienced great
inconvenience from the want of our tub-boat, which
had been destroyed during the winter. As soon,
therefore, as I could find sufficient leisure, I had
resolved to construct some substitute for it. I was
anxious to try and make one, like the simple savages
canoes, from the bark of a tree, and an excursion was
resolved on in order to select a suitable one, as all
those in our immediate neighbourhood were much too
valuable, either for their fruit or the shade they
afforded, to be sacrificed for such a purpose.

We had, as usual, several objects in view in our
proposed journey. Our fields of corn and wheat had
necessarily obtained little attention, owing to our
constant occupation at the cave. We wished, there-
fore, to ascertain how they were getting on. Our
garden and orchard at Tent House had fared better,
owing to our residence in the neighbourhood. We
had watered them by means of channels leading from
the cascade, and had already obtained a delicious
succession of vegetables, while our maize, pine-apples,
melons; and various other plants, promised to be
equally successful. We were also desirous of obtain-
ing a fresh supply of candleberry wax and caoutchoue,
as well as a variety of additional gourd vessels. On
reaching our fields at Falcon’s Stream, we found that
220 NEW PROJECTS AND DISCOVERIES.

the various grains we had sown had sprung up with
the utmost luxuriance, and, fostered by the great
heat of the climate, were, for the most part, nearly
ready for cutting. We cut down the barley, wheat,
and rye. There was also small patches of pease,
millet, and lentils, sufficient to supply us with seed
for the following year. But our most abundant crop
was the maize, which now covered a large surface of
ground with its golden ears. But we found our har-
vest treasures had not failed to secure an abundant
appreciation. Our dogs startled whole flocks of
birds, which took to wing as we approached, while
quails were seen running off in various directions,
and several kangaroos escaped by their singular and
prodigious leaps.

We were grieved and alarmed by such a host of
spoilers, and when the first sense of surprise was
over, which had prevented us using our guns, Fritz
unhooded his eagle, and let it fly among the spoilers
of our grain. It seemed at once to scare the whole
flock, while it singled out one large bustard, and
pouncing on him, brought him to the ground. Fritz
hastened to the spot, and replacing the hood, released
the poor bustard from his talons. Fortunately it was
not greatly hurt, and we were delighted on perceiv-
ing that it was a male, as we anticipated the advan-
tages that we must reap from procuring a mate for
the female bustard which we had already tamed and
added to our poultry.

Having collected together the grain which we had
NEW PROJECTS AND DISCOVERIES. 221

cut, we returned with it to Faleon’s Nest. Part of
it we immediately thrashed, and stored away the
remainder in our lofts till we should have greater
leisure; while Fritz set to work looking out the
hand-mill we had brought from the ship, which it
was now desirable to bring into requisition. The
next day we proceeded to carry out another project.
Our live stock was now increasing so rapidly on our
hands, that we had reason to apprehend they might
become a burden on us, especially during winter.
We resolved, therefore, to try whether it might not
be possible to naturalize them, so that they might
support themselves, and yet still be available to us
when needed. My wife, therefore, selected some
pairs of fowls from her poultry-yard, while I, in like
manner, took pigs, sheep, and goats. These we
placed in the large cart, along with provisions, and
such tools as we might need. We added also the
rope-ladder and portable tent; and harnessing the
buffalo, cow, and. ass, to our waggon, we set off on
our novel expedition. Fritz, mounted on his favourite
onagra, rode before us, so as to guide the way,
selecting, as usual, a new route, in order to acquire
a more complete idea of the country in which we
had settled.

Our progress through unexplored districts was
attended, as usual, with some new discoveries, one
of which was of the utmost importance. Our atten-
tion was attracted by a number of low bushes, which
presented an appearance as if covered with snow.
222 NEW PROJECTS AND DISCOVERIES.

Little Francis longed to gather it, that he might
make snow-balls; and on Fritz galloping forward
and bringing a branch of the tree, the idea at once
flashed on my mind that this beautiful white down
must be cotton. It was a discovery of the greatest
possible value to us, and filled my wife with delight.
We collected as much as our bags would hold; and
my wife was so full of the subject, that I had to
engage forthwith that I would attempt the manufac-
ture of a loom for weaving the thread she would
spin.

Resuming our journey, we crossed the Plain of
Cotton Trees, and reached a rising ground, from the
summit of which the view on every side was extcn-
sive and beautiful. We selected a sheltered and
agreeable spot, where we proposed to erect what I
already styled our summer farm, We found a con-
venient group of trees, so situated that their trunks
would suffice for the main pillars of our dwelling. I
also selected a tree suitable for the proposed boat
we had in view. The day, however, was already
far advanced; and when Fritz and I returned from
the latter search, we found the tent erected, and my
wife and the boys busy making up a comfortable
bed with the cotton which they had already picked.
We retired to rest at an early hour, and were all
speedily sound asleep.
THE FARM HOUSES. 223

CHAPTER XXIX.

THE FARM HOUSES.

THE group of trees I had selected for our farm com-
posed an irregular parallelogram. They were about
a foot in diameter in the trunk, and standing near
together. My first proceeding was to cut deep
mortices in these at uniform heights, so as to receive
the ends of beams which I stretched by this means
from tree to tree, and thus formed, without any great
labour, the skeleton of the buildiug. Over the upper
tier of these I constructed a sloping roof, which I
covered with large pieces of bark, securing them
with the thorns of the acacia, which formed a tole-
rabze substitute for nails. In peeling off the bark
from some of the neighbouring trees, in order to
make our roofing, we discovered both turpentine
and gum mastic, which I hailed with satisfaction, as
furnishing me with the means of overlaying my
boat with a useful substitute for pitch. Another
bark, brought by Jack to his mother, proved to be
cinnamon, so that we had also an agreeable addition
to our spices.

We worked for some days at the farm house. The
walls were closed in by means of small spars, through
which we wove reeds and brushwood to a height of
about six feet. Above this we made an open trellis-
work so as to admit a free circulation of air. The
224 THE FARM HOUSES.

interior we subdivided into fitting accommodation for
the various animals, reserving one small apartment
for our own use when we should visit it. Above we
made a loft, where fodder could be stored. We filled
the racks with the most favourite food of the various
animals, and supplied the poultry with grain and
fruits, so as to accustom them to the place. We also
proposed to renew the like supplies from time to
time, till the animals acquired the habit of returning
to this shelter. Our work occupied us longer than
we had anticipated, and our own supplics began to
fail us. I therefore despatched Fritz and Jack, on
the onagra and buffalo, to look after the live stock we
had left at home, and to bring us a fresh supply of
~ provisions. For the latter purpose they took the ass
with them, and set off at their highest speed, while
Ernest and I proceeded to explore the vicinity of our
new dwelling, in the hope of meeting with some
cocoa-nut palms, or other convenient means of pre-
sently replenishing our exhausted larder. We fol-
lowed the winding course of a stream, which ter-
minated in a swamp, and beyond this our eyes were
delighted at the prospect of the still waters of a
beautiful lake, doubly grateful to us from its recalling
some of the scenery with which-we had been familiar
at home. The surface of the marsh was covered with
a plant, now ripe on the stalk, which seemed to
attract large flocks of birds. On examining this
closely, I was delighted to discover a species of wild
rice. We succeeded in bringing down five or six
THE FARM HOUSES, 225

of the birds, which proved to be of the species of the
Canada heath-fowl and bustard; so that they were
joyfully transferred to our game-bag. I was gratified,
also, to observe the skill with which Ernest used his
gun, notwithstanding the usual want of ardour and
activity which he showed.

The monkey had joined us, on the back of Bill,
and chancing to observe him pick up something
which he ate with great relish, I followed on his
track, and was rewarded by the discovery of the
Chili or pine-apple strawberry—a delicious fruit,
which proved most refreshing and acceptable. We
failed not to gather a supply to take home with us,
that the absent might share in the treat; and to this,
also, I added specimens of the rice, that my wife
might judge how far it was useful for culinary pur-
poses. We found ourselves surrounded on every
side with new and strange objects. As we walked
along the margin of the lake, we were surprised to
observe a pair of black swans gracefully sailing on
the water. We soon saw many more, some of them
followed by their young train. Ernest here raised his
gun, but I interfered and forbade the wanton cruelty.
Bill, however, found no such satisfaction in the mere
sight of natural objects; and, while we were admir-
ing the graceful motions of the swans, and their
beautiful glossy plumage, we were startled by Bill
plunging into the water near us, and presently re-
turning with a most singular animal in its mouth.
It somewhat resembled an otter. It had web feet
226 THE FARM HOUSES.

like those of aquatic birds; but the most singular
feature was the head. This was altogether small,
and the eyes and ears scarcely visible, while from the
head a singular snout extended precisely like the
bill of a duck. This singular creature, which was
altogether new to us, is known in Europe as the duck-
billed platipus; and, like the black swan, was first
made known by discoveries in New Zealand.

It was now, however, time to return. Ernest was
so struck with the peculiar features of the remarkable
animal Bill had caught, that he resolved to take it
home and stuff it. We reached ow tent nearly at
the same time as Fritz and Jack. They had brought
back ample supplies, and had made arrangements
which would admit of our continued absence. We
stayed, therefore, some days longer, and compieted our
new structure, and stored it with a good supply of
fodder and grain. We also put our own apartment
in order, so as to be ready for us whenever we chose
to return.

‘We were so well satisfied of the comfort and
utility likely to result from our labours, that we de-
cided on erecting a second farm house in the vicinity
of Cape Disappointment. We therefore loaded our
eart and set off in that direction. On the way we
gathered a quantity of fruit, which I recognized as
the stone pine, the kernel of which is pleasant to eat.
On reaching the eminence in the vicinity of Cape
Disappointment, we were delighted with the great
extent and beauty of the prospect, and with the ad-
THE FARM HOUSES. 227

vantages it afforded for our purpose. A spring of
water rose near the summit, and formed a clear and
beautiful stream, while from the top we could see the
whole country surrounding Falcon’s Nest, as well as
equally wide expanse in the opposite direction.

Profiting by our experience, we speedily constructed
a building nearly similar to our first farm, on which
I conferred the name of Prospect Hill.

When we had completed this to our satisfaction, I
set to work on my projected boat. Selecting an oak
tree, the bark of which was close and thick, some-
what like cork, with great labour we detached a piece
fully eighteen feet in length. This I split up some
way at one end, and then folded over the two pieces
s0 as to bring it to a point. I then secured them
with pins and astrong cement, and, having fixed the
sides in the form I wished them to retain, we laid
it to dry and harden in the sun. Much, however,
remained to be done before our boat could be con-
sidered completed. I therefore despatched two of
the boys to Tent House for the sledge, that we
might carry it home and finish it at our leisure.
While they were absent we proceeded to the narrow
strait, where the opposite end of the wall of rocks
terminated, and planted a thick hedge of prickly
bushes, so as to form through time a barrier against
intruders, as well as to retain our own animals, includ-
ing the pigs, which we had brought with us in order
to colonize this new station, and prevent them stray-
ing to the open country beyond. When we returned

(89) 15
228 THE FARM ILOUSES,

to Prospect Hill, night had already set in; we there-
fore slept there, and, rising with the dawn, we put
the boat on the sledge, and loading it with such
things as were worth removing, including a large
bamboo which we had cut and prepared for a mast to
our boat, we returned to Tent Eouse.

The completion of our boat was now the first
object. I had brought with me some bent ribs cut
on purpose from the oak tree. These strengthened
it and improved its shape. We next lined it through-
out with wood, furnished it with seats, and adapted
to it the bamboo as a moveable mast. To this we
added a triangular sail. The stern was neatly fitted
in, and completed with a rudder; and the whole
being well pitched outside, our delight was great,
when our labours were completed, to see the purpose-
like appearance she had in the water. We were
thus amply provided for marine excursions—having
the pinnace when we chose to make a distant voyage,
and the canoe for short excursions along the coast.

Our cow had, during our absence, given us a young
buffalo calf; and as each of the elder boys was now
provided with his quadruped for riding, I determined
that this should belong to Francis, and be trained for
his use. I accordingly began by piercing its nostrils,
and attaching a cord to it, by which its little master
could hold it in check. It rapidly grew under his
eare, exhibiting considerable docility, and affording
him unbounded gratification.
GUB WINTER DWELLING, 229

CHAPTER XXX,
OUR WINTER DWELLING.

WuiILe we employed our time in reaping, planting,
looking after our various colonies of live stock, and

gathering in the abundant stores within our reach,
we were not forgetful of the necessity of completing
our preparations for quitting Faleon’s Nest on the
approach of winter. It was still, according to our
reckoning, nearly two manths before the rainy sea-
son would set in, but we had much to do in order to
render our grotto complete. Our first work was to
build a substantial stone partition, so as to separate
the stable from the dwelling, and effectually ex-
clude any offensive effluvia. We also constructed a
drain, so as ta keep it dry and clean, and then laid
the whole floor with clay, which we overlaid with
gravel, and beat till it was smooth and firm. This
soon dried, and formed a hard and comfortable floor.
ing. Qur next work was to plaster the walls with
the gypsum we had cellected and prepared. Wa
rapidly acquired dexterity in this novel employment;
and as the weather was now at its hottest, it dried and
grew quite firm in a very few days, We were so
well pleased with the result of our lahours, that we
resolved to try if another European luxury could not
be added to our domestic furnishings, I eollected a
large quantity ofthe goats’ hair, which we had shorn
230 OUR WINTER DWELLING,

in order to relieve them during the oppressive heat of
the summer, and, spreading out a large sail-cloth, I
marked off the size of our dining-room, and, covering
it with the goats’ hair, I then poured over the whole
a cement we had prepared with isinglass and gum.
We then rolled up the sail-cloth with its hair cover-
ing, after beating it well to compact it together.
The next process was to spread it in the sun to dry,
and we found ourselves furnished with a thick and
comfortable felt carpet. Pleased with our success,
we made similar coverings for the floors of our sleep-
ing apartments, so as to protect us effectually against
risk of damp during the approaching rainy season.
By the time these various works were completed,
the indications of the coming winter began to appear.
We therefore lost no time in completing all-our
needful stores and provender, and removing our cattle
and poultry to our cave dwelling, so that we were
completely prepared for it when the rain at length
set in. Our new dwelling fully answered our ex-
pectations, and we were never weary of admiring the
comforts it afforded, and which contrasted so favour-
ably with the experiences of the former winter. The
season proved much more cold and boisterous, but we
had now warm and convenient apartments, well lighted
and secured with doors and windows. Our roomy
and well-furnished granaries were close at hand, so
that we could attend to all the wants of our cattle
without labour or exposure to the weather. Our
large workroom was also a source of great comfort to
OUR WINTER DWELLING. 231

us, as it admitted of a constant succession of health-
ful and invigorating occupations, and afforded the
boys ample room for their sports. Every morning
was begun with appropriate domestic worship, and
after we had seen the cattle fed, and had our own
breakfast, we adjourned to the workroom. I made
for myself a sort of turning-lathe, with the help of
the wheels I took off one of the gun-carriages we had
brought from the ship, and contrived to produce some
tolerably useful utensils. I also provided my wife
with a spinning-wheel and reel, which, though some-
what clumsy, answered the purpose, and kept her in
constant employment suited to her taste. The turn-
ing-lathe was a special favourite with Ernest, who
speedily acquired great dexterity in its use.

Our last work was to fit up an unoccupied portion
of the cave asa chapel. This we left as much as
possible in its natural state; and as it was in the
interior of the cave, where no window could be made,
it had to be illuminated with candles for our Sabbath
service. The effect of its colonnades and pendants,
and its walls covered with the glittering crystals,
which reflected back the lights with the most dazzling
brilliancy, was altogether magnificent. We had
divine service in the chapel every Sabbath, and I
always made a short and simple address to my little
congregation, endeavouring to render it as interesting
and instructive as possible. The boys, and especially
Jack and Francis, had a natural taste for music. 1
supplied them with flutes and flagelets, made of
232 OUR WINTER DWELLING.

reeds, which they soon learned to play with consider-
able skill, and when accompanied by their mother’s
sweet voice, and employed in the sacred services of
the Sabbath, the effect was to me altogether charming
and delightful.

The time which we were thus required to spend in
our cave dwelling, or Rock Palace, as we termed it,
was employed in completing many useful furnishings,
and in providing ourselves with shocs and clothes.
The kitchen fireplace not only answered perfectly for
all the requisites of the culinary department, but also
proved no slight source of comfort, especially in the
evenings, when the cheerful blaze of the fire lent its
light as well as its heat to attract us round the hearth.
We had found a new and most delightful occupation
for our winter evenings. Ernest and Trancis had
stumbled on a case of books belonging to the captain
of our ship. We also possessed several which had
been found in the officers’ chests, so that, besides our
Bible and Prayer Books, we had now a tolerably
respectable library, including tales and books of
voyages and travels, works on navigation, and what
interested us above all, various books on zoology,
botany, and other branches of natural history,
copiously illustrated with engravings. We were also
possessed of maps, a terrestrial globe, and various
mathematical and astronomical instruments; in addi-
tion to which, we discovered among our literary and
scientific treasures various vocabularies and gram-
mars of foreign languages.
OUR WINTER DWELLING, 253

With the exception of Francis and Jack, we all
knew French well. Fritz and Ernest, during a brief
sojourn in England, had acquired a knowledge of
the language of the country. My wife knew some-
what of German, and as we looked forward to the
possibility of a European vessel reaching our island
some day, the idea of our not being able to commu-
nicate with the voyagers, from ignorance of their
language, stimulated all of us to devote our leisure
hours to such study.

The time at length drew near when we expected
the rainy season to close, but after some appearance
of its termination, it seemed to break out again with
redoubled violence. The wind also rose to a perfect
hurricane, and the noise of the waves was at times
terrific. We congratulated ourselves on the safe
shelter which our substantial dwelling afforded com-
pared with Falcon’s Nest. But after a time the
weather abated. The rain became less, and at length
ceased altogether, and we were able to venture forth
to look once more on the external world. We ob-
served, with surprise and delight, the signs of reviv-
ing vegetation, and gratified ourselves by walking
along the base of the cliff, and indulging in the
exercise which we had been so long precluded from.
Fritz, who had climbed to an elevated peak among
_ the rocks, from whence he was gazing on every side,
~ pereeived some black object of considerable size, and
somewhat resembling an overturned boat, lying on
the island in the bay.
234 OUR WINTER DWELLING.

The long confinement which we had been forced
to submit to, made us the more inclined to embark
and proceed to the little island, to reconnoitre the
objeet which had excited our curiosity. We imme-
diately went for our boat, and having emptied it of
the rain water which had lodged in it, I set off, along
with Fritz, Ernest, and Jack. As we drew near
the island, one conjecture sueceeded to another, till
I was surprised to recognize in it a huge whale ex-
tended on the strand. Being still ignorant if it were
dead or alive, I deemed it prudent to steer for the
other side of the island, where we landed in a small
creek. The island was very slightly elevated, so
that we lost little time by this proceeding. It was
covered with a luxurious vegetation, among which a
number of sea-fowls had constructed their nests.
The boys took the opportunity of filling their bags
with eggs to carry to their mother. There were two
ways by which we could reach the whale; the more
direct one, which required some climbing over rocks,
I left to the boys, taking the longer but more con-
venient one myself. The view from the more ele-
vated centre of the island was extensive, and beautiful,
including the whole coast from beyond Tent House
to Faleon’s Nest, and proved so attractive that I
forgot for the moment the object of our excursion.
The boys had found attractions of a different kind,
in the beautiful shells and corals which lay scattered
about the beach. On reaching the object of our visit,
we found an enormous whale, stretched dead upon
DISSECTION OF THE WHALE. 235

the strand, which I immediately resolved should
supply us with its abundant stores of oil. Destitute,
however, as we were of the needful appliances for
this purpose, we returned to our boat and hastened
back to the shore, in order to provide ourselves with
what was requisite.

CHAPTER XXXI.

DISSECTION OF THE WHALE,

- TMMEDIATELY after dinner, which we despatched with
unusual haste, we prepared for our novel expedition.
I was at a loss for barrels in which to store the
blubber, being unwilling to employ any of those in
ordinary use for such a purpose. My wife, however,
reminded me of the four tubs formerly conjoined for
our first boat, and we hastened to attach these to the
stern of our boat. We also provided ourselves with
large knives, hatchets, and other cutting instruments.
The sea was calm, and we were not long in returning
to the island and making directly for the point where
the whale was stranded. We then secured our boat
and tubs to the shore. My wife had been persuaded
to accompany us, bringing little Francis with her,
and both of them loudly expressed their astonishment
' at the enormous size of the monster. Its huge
colossal mass was indeed well calculated to awaken
wonder. J measured it, and found that it was between
236 DISSECTION OF TIE WHALE.

sixty ‘and seventy fect long, and about forty fect in
diameter, though that is by no means the largest size
attained by the whale.

What struck us most was the enormous size of the
head and the smallness of the eyes, which did not
appear so large as those of an ox. Its jaws were
fully twelve feet long, and were lined with long and
flexible appendages, which form a valuable article of
commerce in Europe, under the name of whalebone.
Another thing which seemed peculiarly remarkable
to the boys, was the extreme smallness of the throat
which formed the termination of so enormous a mouth.
I found it necessary, however, to put an end to all
discussion for the present. “ To work,” said 1, “and
let us leave such observations for another time, if we
would wish to accomplish our purpose.”’ Fritz and
Jack immediately put on cramps on their shoes,
which we had provided for that purpose, and mount-
ing on the back of the whale, proceeded to cut up
the huge mass with their hatchets and knives.
Ernest and I employed ourselves in like manner on
the sides, while my wife and Francis carried the
masses, aS we cut them off, to the tubs. The work
was by no means pleasant, for we were soon almost
wading in oil; nor were we long left undisputed
possessors of our prize. A multitude of birds of
various kinds soon flocked around us, and even
snatched at the blubber in our hands. My wife was
attracted by the beautiful soft down on some of them,
and as she observed it would be useful to her, I killed
DISSECTION OF THE WHALE, 237
a number of the foremost intruders, and threw then
into the boat. I also cut some long bands from the
tough skin of the animal, which I destined for har-
nesses for our ass and buffaloes. The evening was
now approaching, and we hastened to the shore
with our valuable, but by no means pleasant or
odoriferous cargo. So soon as we reached the land,
the boys were despatched for the animals, and with
the help of the ass and buffalo, we soon transported
our cargo home.

The next morning we were off in our boat at the
dawn; my wife and Francis, however, being left
behind, as the work we had in view was one we had
no inclination that they should share. I had resolved
to penetrate into the interior to procure some portions
of the intestines. A fresh breeze soon brought us
to the island, which we found covered with immense
flocks of birds, making sad havoc with the masses
we had detached from the carcass. Our former ex-
perience led us to strip off nearly the whole of our
clothes before we set to work, and I now explained
to my boys the object I had in view, as J anticipated
we would be able to convert the larger intestines of
the whale into convenient vessels for retaining the
oil. We selected, accordingly, the portions which
seemed best suited to our purpose, and cut them in
pieces of from six to twelve feet long. We then
turned them outside in, and washed them in the sea.
We collected also another cargo of the whale blubber,
and then abandoning the carcass to the voracious
238 DISSECTION OF THE WHALE.

birds of prey which were flocking from every side,
we set sail once more for land.

The following day was devoted to the preparation
of the oil. We chose a spot for our work sufficiently
remote from our residence to prevent our being after-
wards annoyed with its fetid odour. We placed the
tubs on stands, and disposing the blubber in them,
we loaded it with large stones, so as to press out the
oil, which we received in the bags we had provided
from the intestines. This was the finest and purest
oil. We then boiled the blubber in a large iron
cauldron, skimming off the oil as it rose to the sur-
face. When we had extracted the oil, the refuse was
thrown into the river, where the ducks and geese
made a hearty repast on it. My wife also threw in
the birds we had brought from the island, after
plucking off their feathers, as they were too coarse
and rancid for food. These soon attracted a large
number of lobsters, and we profited by the opportunity
to obtain an abundant supply of them also.

We had been deeply mortified by the report which
Fritz and Jack brought us, after a hasty ride over to
our summer farm. Instead of finding it, as we had
hoped, stocked with the useful colonists we had
established there, it was a deserted ruin. The mon-
keys, it appeared, had torn it to pieces to get at the
provisions we had stored in it, and the jackalls and
other beasts of prey, we had every reason to believe,
had killed and devoured our sheep and goats. When,
therefore, our oil manufacture was completed, my
DISSECTION OF THE WHALE, _ 239

wife suggested to me a plan to which I at once con-
ceded as a most excellent one. ‘ What,” said she,
“should prevent us from establishing a farm on
Whale Island? We could transport a colony of our
domestic animals there without any danger of their
being molested either by apes or jackalls.’ The
boys were so delighted with the project that they
were for setting off at once to carry it into effect. I
moderated their impatience, however, by pointing out
some of the drawbacks which I conceived attached
to an island so exposed to wind and storms, and [I
added that it would be impossible to trust any of our
animals there so long as the carcass of the whale
attracted so many birds of prey.

I had promised the boys that I would try and con-
struct for them an apparatus calculated to diminish
the labour of rowing, and a reference to this now
proved much more effectual than any arguments I
had advanced in diverting their thoughts from the
Whale Island farm. Jack was impatient to have
the boat made to go without rowing. I warned them,
however, that the most I could hope to do was to
lessen our labour, and perhaps quicken our speed. I
accordingly set to work, and with the assistance of
some small-toothed wheels, originally destined for the
sugar manufactory, I constructed machinery which,
though rude enough, answered our purpose. I con-
structed a pair of small paddle-wheels, somewhat
like those of a steamboat, to which I attached floats
made of whalebone, and by the arrangement of my
210 DISSECTION OF THE WHALE.

machinery I succeeded, after various attempts, in
producing such an engine as would drive round these
wheels in the water on turning a handle. When
this was tricd in the water it worked admirably, pro-
pelling the boat with considerable velocity, and with
no great labour.

The children were delighted on witnessing the
success. of my labours, and so soon as I returned
from my first experiment with it, they all leaped into
the boat and begged me to set off immediately for
Whale Island, I opposed this idea, however, very
decidedly. The day was already too far advanced
for any long excursion, but I proposed that on the
morrow we should make an excursion, by sea, to
Prospect Hill, and see how our colony which we had
planted there had fared. My proposition was joy-
fully received, and all set about the necessary pre-
parations of provisions and arms for an early start
on the morrow.

Soon after dawn we were breakfasted and ready to
aet off. The strong current of Jackall River carried
us out rapidly from the shore, and after having passed
Whale Island, we approached the coast on the oppo-
site shore of the bay, near the Wood of Monkeys, in
hope of being able to secure a supply of cocoa-nuts
and young tress, which we proposed to plant on the
island. In making our way through the trees, we
heard, to our great delight, the crowing of the cocks,
which announced to us the neighbourhood of our farm
house, and the safety of its occupants. The sound
DISSECTION OF THE WHALE, 241

recalled many fond. associations of our dear native
land, and it was not without some difficulty that I
succeeded in overcoming the emotions which this
apparently trivial cause excited. When we had ac-
complished our purpose we re-embarked, and rowed
towards Prospect Hill, As we approached we heard
the bleating of our flocks, and the various sounds
which gave evidence of the safety of the establish-
ment.

We found everything in order, but our long
absence had produced its natural effect, and the
sheep and goats, as well as the poultry, fled on our
approach. The boys, however, were prepared for
them. Finding that their racing was altogether in-
effectual, they drew forth their lassos, and we soon
had the she-goats noosed, and obtained from them a
very acceptable supply of milk. My wife also wished
to carry off some of the young poultry, and after
distributing some handfuls of rice and oats, which
brought them all about us, we had no difficulty in
securing such as we wanted. We also distributed
potatoes and other roots among the sheep and goats,
so as to accustom them to our visits. After dinner
Fritz and I set off to gather sugar-canes, and also to
dig up some of the roots of this valuable plant, which
we proposed to transfer to Whale Island.

On our return the whole party re-embarked, and
‘ we set off with the intention of doubling Cape Dis-
appointment, and exploring the great bay bevond.
But true to its name, a long bank of sand, which
242 DISSECTION OF THE WHALE,

stretched out from the cape, completely baffled us, and
we were obliged to return. A light breeze, which
had added to our difficulties, favoured our change of
course. I hoisted the sail, and with the aid of our
paddles, we were soon in sight of Whale Island. On
reaching it we hastened to land, and plant our roots
and young trees. The boys, however, found so many
novelties to attract them, that they dispersed as soon
as we landed, and left my wife and me to complete
our work as we best could. As we were proceeding
with our work, we were suddenly attracted by the
shouts of Fritz, who had discovered an enormous
tortoise, and besought us to hasten to his aid. I
reached just in time to lend effective assistance to
Fritz and Ernest, who were struggling to hold a tor-
toise of prodigious size. With the help of two poles
which I had seized hold of, Fritz and I turned it over
on its back, and then proceeded to deliberate more lei-
surely on the steps necessary for conveying it home.

A lucky thought now struck me, derived from
former experience. After securing the tortoise by a
cord passed through the shell, we emptied a barrel
of water which we had brought with us, and after
plugging it tightly, tied it with cords to the back of
the tortoise, so as effectually to prevent it from sink-
ing. I then tied a long stick to the front of the
shell, and secured to it a cord fastened at both ends,
so as to supply the place of reins. ‘ Now,” said I,
“instead of our taking him home, he shall take us.”
We accordingly got ready for departure, and yoking
THE BOA-CONSTRICTOR, 243

the tortoise to the front of the boat, I stood at the
prow with my hatchet, ready to cut the cord in case
of danger. The project answered admirably. The
tortoise, guided by the reins, made swiftly for the
shore, drawing the boat after it, and our prize sup-
plied materials for many a good dish of turtle, besides
furnishing an excellent basin, which we fixed in the
Rockhouse abode to receive water.

CHAPTER XXXII.

THE BOA-CCNSTRICTOR.

Soon after the close of the rainy season I had resolved
to prepare a field expressly for the sowing of our
various grains, where they could be properly attended
to, and reaped in due season. Our animals, however,
we found were still too little accustomed to the yoke
to warrant our attempting to use the plough, and I
was compelled to delay the project. 1 therefore set
to work on the construction of a weaving machine,
which should enable my wife to complete some sub-
stantial fabrics, as our garments had been patched
and repaired till they threatened to hang no longer
together. The result of my labours, though suffi-
ciently clumsy, answered the purpose. My wife’s
industry during the winter furnished the thread with
which I laid down the warp, and in default of the
paste with which the weavers dress it to prevent it
(0) 16
244 THE BOA-CONSTRICTOR,

tangling, I employed my isinglass, or fish glue,
which supplied its place most efficiently.

My next project, which was to manufacture win-
dow-panes of the same material which I had substi-
tuted for our weavers’ paste, excited some merriment
among the boys. This, however, did not deter me
from attempting it. Our experience during the
winter had made us resolve to open a number of
additional windows into our Rockhouse, so as to
admit an abundance of light, and a freer ventilation
when necessary. As, however, we had not glass to
insert in them, some substitute was needful, and
though what I did make was little calculated to
resist rain, the thickness of the rock rendered it easy
to place my new glass beyond its reach, and in other
respects it seemed fully to answer the purpose. It
had not indeed all the transparency of glass, but it
admitted as’ much light as we required into our
dwelling.

My success encouraged me to attempt the supply
of other deficiencies. My boys had long pressed me
to furnish them with saddles and horse-furniture, and
the equipment of our animals, even for yoking to the
sledge or carts, was extremely rude and defective.
I therefore set to work, as a saddler, in good earnest.
The spoils of the chase had already supplied us with
abundance of leather, and a long hairy moss which
we had observed the wild pigeons use in their nests,
furnished an excellent material for stuffing. We
found no difficulty in selecting a sufficient number of
THE BOA-CONSTRICTOR. 245

pieces of the hard bent roots of trees for our frames,
and with a little perseverance I had the satisfaction
of seeing all our animals equipped with saddles,
stirrups, bridles, and yokes and collars, which we
found greatly facilitated our employment of them
either for pleasure or work. We were still employed
in this task when the annual return of the herring
shoals called us off to another employment. We had
found them a valuable addition to our stores during
the previous winter, and our boatnow greatly increased
our facilities for their capture. They were followed,
as formerly, by other fishes, of which we failed not to
make full use, renewing our supplies of isinglass,
bladders, &e., as well as drying and salting those
suited to the table.

The boys began to grow somewhat restive under
these continued demands on our industry, and would
have preferred to procure our supplies by means of
hunting. This, however, I persuaded them to delay,
in order that we might complete another work I had
in view. This was the making of baskets, which we
stood greatly in need of, to carry our potatoes and
other roots, as well as the fruit and nuts that we
gathered, our sacks having begun to fail. We had
already collected a quantity of reeds and strong
rushes, and with these we set to work. Our first
efforts were clumsy enough, but by-and-by we im-
proved, and ultimately finished a number of baskets,
which, if less elegant than might be desired, had the
more essential requisites of lightness and strength.
246 THE BOA-CONSTRICTOR.

The completion of our work suggested another
occupation for our ingenuity. Jack being, as usual,
full of fun, selected a large basket which we had
made for holding manice roots, persuaded little
Francis to get into it, and then passing a stick through
the handles, he called Ernest to his assistance, and
set off at a trot, heedless of all his brother’s remon-
strances. Fritz, who had been watching and laugh-
ing at the sport, suddenly turned to me and said,
“ Would it not be possible to make such a litter for
mamma, in which she could accompany us in long
journeys without fatigue?”

The idea struck me as a happy one, and we set
about the manufacture of a palanquin forthwith. My
wife, indeed, protested that she would never permit
her sons to take the place of slaves, and carry her;
but this difficulty was soon removed by Francis, who
told her that his young bull was already growing
strong as well as docile, and suggested that Storm,
as he called it, along with the buffalo, would carry
it easily between them. The experiment was tried
as soon as we had completed it. The two animals
were harnessed, and two stout poles placed across
their backs, to which the palanquin was hung. Into
this Ernest got, while Jack and Francis mounted on
their steeds and set off at a leisurely pace. Ernest,
however, was not long suffered to enjoy a motion so
suited to his taste, for, at a concerted signal, they
whipped up their beasts and set off at a gallop,
without heeding the shouts of Ernest, who loudly
THE BOA-CONSTRICTOR. 247

called on them to stop, as he jolted and shook at
every bound of his merciless conductors. We could
not help laughing at the ridiculous figure he cut, but
when at last they finished their sport by dropping
the palanquin from between them on the sand, I
was obliged to interfere to prevent a quarrel. It
was no fault, however, of the good-natured, phleg-
matic Ernest to retain his anger long, and it gratified
me to see him, a few minutes after my interference,
helping his brothers to unharness the animals, and
put them in their stables, as if nothing had happened.

While watching the proceedings of the boys, my
attention was arrested by Fritz, who had been gazing
for some time in the direction of Faleon’s Nest, and
suddenly exclaimed, ‘‘ What can that be which is
advancing towards us in so singular a manner!” I
looked in the direction he pointed to, and observed a
cloud of dust on the other side of the Jackall River,
which seemed to draw nearer every minute. Con-
siderable discussion was excited by the variety of
opinions each of us suggested; but I began to feel
uneasy, and ran for the large telescope we had saved
from the wreck. No sooner had I obtained a distinct
view of it, than I exclaimed, ‘“ Fly every one to the
cave! Lose not a moment! It isaserpent; a huge
serpent advancing straight toward us!” Fritz would
have run for our fire-arms, but I told him it was a
boa-constrictor, I felt assured, against which all
opposition we could make was useless. We hastened,
accordingly, to our cave dwelling, into which the
248 THE BOA-CONSTRICTOR.

aninals had already been conducted, and barricaded
as strongly as possible every door and window. We
had no time to remove the boards of Family Bridge,
so that the river proved little impediment to its
approach.

One of our recent works had been the construction
of a large dovecot on the rock above our dwelling, to
which we had made an access from the interior, so as
to admit of our readily visiting it in winter. Into
this we now ascended, and as the boa approached,
Ernest discharged his gun, more through fear than
any better motive. Jack and Francis immediately
followed, but the motions of the animal gave no sign
of their having done any execution. Fritz and I
now took deliberate aim and fired, apparently with
no better success. But an instant after, it glided
away, and disappeared among the reeds in the
marsh where our ducks and geese had taken up their
quarters. Its disappearance was greeted with a
shout of delight; but though our relief was great, my
mind was filled with the most painful anxiety, for I
felt that we had now to contend with an enemy
against which our united forces would prove of no
avail, J therefore proceeded to strengthen, as much
as possible, the barricades we had erected at the door
and windows, and forbade any one to go out, or open
any of them without my express permission.
DEATIT OF THE ASS AND TIE BOA. 249

CHAPTER XXXII.
DEATH OF THE ASS AND THE BOA.

Tue terror of our terrible visiter kept us for three
long days prisoners to our grotto, during which no
one ventured forth, except to bring water from the
neighbouring spring. The enemy had given no new
sign of his presence, and we might have presumed
that he had escaped if the agitation shown by the
ducks and geese, and their abandonment of the spot
where we knew their nests and young broods were,
had not assured us that the monster was still at
hand.

Our situation became every day more critical,
and my own state of mind more painful. I bad
thought of a resolute attack on the boa, but this I
felt might cost the lives of several of us, and after all
fail. The dogs were powerless against such a mon-
ster, and we had nothing but our guns, which had
already proved of so little avail. On the other hand,
we had no stock of provisions laid in; our fodder was
rapidly diminishing, and we seemed to have no alter-
native between starvation or a more sudden fate by *
the horrible enemy that lay in watch for us. It was
our good fortune to be mercifully delivered from this
critical situation, and our deliverer was no other than
our poor faithful ass.

The fodder in the cave was what had remained
950 DEATH OF THE ASS AND THE BOA,

over from the supply of the previous winter, but it
was reduced so low that I found it necessary to
abridge the supplies of the other animals in order to
give it to the cow, on which we were now, to a cer-
tain extent, dependent for our own subsistence. In
this dilemma I determined to set the other animals
at liberty. I arranged that Fritz, mounted on the
onagra, should endeavour to lead them by a ford
near the mouth of the river across to the open coun-
try, while I followed to prevent them straggling in
the rear. In case of the serpent appearing, he was
to make for Falcon’s Nest at his utmost speed, while
I kept watch on a rock about midway, ready to
retreat and resume our defensive operations at the
cave. Meanwhile I sent the rest of the boys up to
the dovecot to be ready with their fire-arms, and to
keep a look-out. While Fritz and I were loosing the
animals, my wife, who had charge of the door, opened
it somewhat prematurely. The ass, which happened
to be the nearest, no sooner saw the light than it
bolted out, and dashed along the sands, capering and
kicking up its heels in evident delight at its freedom.
Fritz was for mounting his onagra and setting off
after it; but what was our horror, as the poor ass
approached in the direction of the marsh, to see the
serpent suddenly emerge from its concealment, and,
elevating his head from the ground, make for it with
distended jaws and forked tongue darted from its
mouth, The ass saw its danger, but it seemed
paralysed with fear, and in another instant it was
DEATH OF THE ASS AND TIE BOA. 251

enveloped in the folds of the monstrous reptile, and
erushed to death.

So excited were the boys at the sight of our poor
ass subjected to so terrible a fate, that they were for
rushing out to fire upon its assailant; but I restrained
them, and forbade them to fire or make any noise,
telling them that if we waited patiently we would
now have the monster in our own power, whereas by
interfering at present we could only expose ourselves
to danger without doing any good.

The sight of the huge serpent crushing his victim,
and kneading it into a shapeless mass by the con-
traction of his scaly folds, was altogether horrible
and sickening to look upon. I knew, however, what
was to follow. When this seemed completed to its
taste, it began to swallow its prey, and we saw the
immense mass disappear by degrees within its dis-
tended maw, and when all was swallowed it appeared
to lie perfectly torpid and insensible. ‘‘ Now,’’ said
J, “is our time to be avenged on our assailant!” I
accordingly seized my loaded gun, and set out, fol-
lowed by Fritz and Jack, while Ernest withdrew
with Francis and his mother into the grotto.

As I approached the monster, I could not divest
myself of a considerable degree of fear. I was now
satisfied that we had to do with a boa-constrictor, the
most frightful of all the serpent tribe. The animal
raised his head as I approached, and darted at me,
but my courage was renewed by its evident power-
lessness. When we were within eighteen or twenty
252 DEATIT OF TIE ASS AND TIE BOA,

paces, Fritz and I took deliberate aim, and each
lodged a bullet in its head. The serpent still glared
on us with flashing eyes of impotent rage, but its
body seemed to writhe and move as with a convulsive
struggle. We now drew our large pistols, and ad-
vancing together, fired them directly through the
monster’s eye, while Jack, resolved to participate in
the honour of the victory, sent a bullet into the belly
as it turned up, in its last convulsive writhings,
Suddenly we saw the boa contract the rings of its
scaly body, a violent quiver ran through it, and the
next instant it was stretched out dead on the sand.

We set up a shout of victory, at the sound of
which Ernest ran out, followed by my wife and
little Francis. For my own part, I felt giddy and
stupified, and could scarce believe my senses, when
I gazed on the enormous serpent lying dead at our
fect. This feeling, however, soon wore off, and
after the painful state of anxiety we had been kept
in for three days, we felt our deliverance little
less joyfully than on our first landing from the
wreck. I had’ resolved already to preserve the
evidence of our victory, and accordingly despatched
Fritz and Jack for the buffaloes, while Ernest and
Francis remained with me to protect our spoil
from the birds of prey which already hovered over
it.

Our first work was to disinter the mangled remains
of our poor ass from its horrid sepulchre, and bury
it in the earth near the scene of its death. We
DEATII OF THE ASS AND THE BOA. 253

then yoked our buffaloes to the dead serpent, and
drew it to the vicinity of Rock Ilouse. The dis-
secting and stuffing of the huge monster was a source
of great delight to the boys, and when they had
completed it, and wound it round a long pole, it wag
placed erect in one of our apartments, where Ernest
had,already accumulated sundry stuffed animals, and
many beautiful pebbles, corals, shells, and other
natural curiosities. This he called the Museum, and
on seeing the serpent deposited among his relics, he
humorously wrote up over the entrance, ‘ No entrance
for asses !’’ a sentence which, as it admitted of more
than one meaning, was enjoyed by all of us as a
good jest.

Escaped from the imminent danger with which
we had been menaced, I could not rest satisfied till
I had ascertained if the boa, which was a female,
had a nest of young ones, or perchance had left its
mate in our neighbourhood. I resolved, accordingly,
to explore the country, first in the direction of the
marsh, and afterwards beyond Falcon’s Nest, from
whence the boa had come. Jack and Ernest both
hesitated to accompany me, and made no conceal-
ment of their terror at the idea of mecting with
another serpent; but I reasoned with them on the
folly of becoming slaves to an imaginary terror,
when we had just been delivered from so great an
actual danger, telling them, moreover, that if wa
were to give way to such feelings now, we must
make prisoners of ourselves for life.
254 DEATH OF THE ASS AND TIE BOA.

We set out together. In addition to our usual
arms, we carried with us some broad planks and
long staves of bamboo, as well as bladders, to sus-
tain us on the water, should it be necessary. On
reaching the marsh we readily recognised the traces
left by the boa, and by placing our broad planks,
one after another, on the yielding ground, we were
able to explore the marsh thoroughly, and satisfy
ourselves that there was no further cause of fear in
that direction. As we approached the further ex-
tremity of the marsh, we were attracted by some
curious and beautiful plants, and as we advanced
we were astonished to discover that the stream
which flowed into the marsh emerged from a large
cavern. The roof and walls of the cave were
eovered with stalactites, while the floor was strewed
in part with a fine white earth, which, after ex-
amining, I became convinced must be fuller’s earth.
I immediately filled my handkerchief with it, as
T said to the boys; “ Your good mother will be
well pleased with our journey when we show her
this as the fruit of it.” I then explained to them
_ the nature of soap, which is made of a kind of salt
mixed with grease or fatty matter to counteract
the action of the acids, but that this natural soap
served for many purposes, and especially for clean-
ing woollen fabrics, much better than any artificial
soap.

Fritz had meanwhile been advancing into the
cavern, and called out that he had penetrated into
DEATH OF THE ASS AND TIE BOA, 255

a large gallery. Following him now, I drew a
pistol from my belt and fired it off, the prolonged
echoes of which seemed to indicate that the cavern
was one of great extent. All at once Fritz cried
out, “ Father! it is another grotto of salt!’ I now
struck a light, and lighting two candles which we
had with us, I was astonished at the magnificent
appearance it presented. I explained, however, to
Fritz, that he was mistaken, as the water which
dripped from the rock would have melted the crystals
long ago had they been of salt, but that it was pure
rock crystal. After exploring the new grotto a
considerable way, and breaking off a fine specimen
of the rock crystal, we returned to the entrance.
Here I found my poor boy Jack weeping bitterly.
“What is the matter?” I exclaimed, as he sprung
forward with an expression of joy, and threw himn-
self into my arms. My poor boy, I found, had been
terrified by the report of the pistol, which re-echoed
through the cavern with such a volume of sound
that he concluded the cave had fallen in upon us,
and he would never see his father or brother more.
Not so with his more phlegmatic brother, Ernest,
however, whom we found busy on the border of the
marsh, constructing a sort of fishing-net, or basket
of rushes. On our approach he saluted us with an
air of triumph, telling us he had killed a young boa.
It appeared, on examination, that he had observed
an eel among the slime of the marsh, and full of tha
idea of boa-constrictors, he had hit it a blow with
256 EXCURSION TO THE GREAT BAY.

the butt end of his musket enough to have killed a
dozen eels. He was a little annoyed at our merri-
ment at his expense, but the ecl proved much more
acceptable on our return to Rock House than a boa
would have been. My wife was delighted to see us
home again in safety, and was not less pleased on my
producing my bundle of fuller’s earth. We displayed
in like manner the various fruits of our expedition,
and the evening passed pleasantly away in narrating
our various discoveries and adventures.

CHAPTER XXXIV.

EXCURSION TO THE GREAT BAY,

I proposep, on the following day, that the whole
family should accompany me in an excursion to the
further side of the great bay, where we had con-
structed the barrier which terminated our present:
limits on that side. Our preparations were on an
unusual scale, and rather resembled those for some
military expedition. We loaded the waggon with
provisions sufficient to admit of an absence of some
length. We took also our canvass tent, with vessels
and dishes, and an abundant supply of arms and
ammunition. My object was not only to follow up
the traces of our late hostile visiter, but also to
erect, in the gorge beyond the great bay, such a
EXCURSION TO TIIE GREAT BAY. 257

barrier as should effectually prevent any wild beasts
from approaching from that side.

My wife took her place in the waggon drawn by
the two buffaloes, on which Jack and Francis were
mounted. Fritz, on his spirited onagra, galloped in
front, while Ernest and I walked by the side of our
waggon, attended by the dogs. We advanced in
this manner along the avenue towards Falcon’s
Nest. As we approached it we discovered traces
of the boa’s course, but everything was in order
at Falcon’s Nest. The sheep and goats ran to
meet us, and partook heartily of some grain and
salt we had brought for them, and the whole of
our live stock appeared to be in the most charming
condition.

After having dined, we set out with the intention
of exploring the vicinity of the Lake of the Black
Swans. We accordingly divided ourselves into two
companies. I took with me Francis, who had
already learned to handle a light gun, and with the
two young dogs as our companions, we set off along
the left bank of the lake, while Fritz and Jack, ac-
companied by Turk and the jackall, took the oppo-
site side, leaving Ernest and his mother, with Bill
for their guard, to watch our provisions, and collect
as large a supply as they could of the rice which was
now ripening in the marshy fens along the margin
of the lake. Master Francis was delighted to bear
a share in our exploring excursions, and marched
along with an air of great pride. The noise of our
238 EXCURSION TO THE GREAT BAY,

footsteps from time to time startled the birds from
their nests in the reeds, but their motions were too
swift to admit of a shot, though Francis was burn-
ing with impatience to make trial of his gun. Sud-
denly we heard a singular ery, not unlike the bray
of the onagra. “Iam sure,” said Francis, ‘ there
is a little onagra among the reeds.” I smiled at
him, guessing already the origin of the sound, as I
presumed it to be that of a species of marsh bittern
which builds its nest in such localities. I explained
to him my ideas on the subject, and the little sports-
man immediately exclaimed, “O, how I should like
to have a shot at it!’ “ Well,” said I, “ perhaps
you may if you are on the watch.” I accordingly
sent the dogs in among the rushes, and presently
some birds rose on the wing, but to my surprise the
boy discharged his gun among the rushes instead of
firing into the air.

“ You foolish fellow,” said I, “is that the way you
go to work? You have let the game escape you.”
“ Not at all,” said Francis, with great animation.
“« See, here it is; and as he spoke he pulled an animal
somewhat resembling an agouti out from among the
rushes. On examining it closely, I found that it
differed considerably from the agouti, and was indeed
a rare animal, found in South America, called the
cabiai, the voice of which I had no doubt was what
I had been ascribing to the bittern. This curious
animal usually feeds during the night. It runs
swiftly, swims well, and can remain a considerable
EXCURSION TO THE GREAT BAY. 259

time under water. It eats like a kangaroo, sitting
on its hind legs, and its ery bears considerable re-
semblance to the braying of an ass. Francis now
took up the cabiai and threw it over his shoulders,
and we set off on our return home. He soon, how-
ever, began to show symptoms of fatigue, and not-
withstanding his pride at the acquisition of such a
prize, he was glad at last to lay it over the back of
Bran, the largest of our two young dogs, and let him
carry it home.

On reaching the spot where we had left Ernest
and his mother, we found the former lying on the
ground nearly where we had left him. It seemed,
however, that he had not been thus idle all the time
since our departure, for the ground around him was
strewed with a number of large dead rats. On our
expressing our curiosity, he proceeded to inform us
‘that he had observed the monkey, which still con-
tinued to be his favourite, run in pursuit of one of
them, and on following him he found a singular
causeway projecting into the water. His curiosity
was excited, and on proceeding to examine it he
observed that it was pierced with a number of holes.
Into one of these he thrust a long bamboo, and pre-
sently an immense number of rats rushed out and
escaped among the rice. He then spread the sack
which he had brought for collecting the rice over
the hole, and beating on the causeway with his cane,
some of the animals ran out and were caught in

this novel trap; but on his striking the bag in order
eo 17
260 EXCURSION TO THE GREAT BAY.

to kill them, their cries appeared to have alarmed
the colony, and he presently found himself assailed
with a whole legion of rats. His danger was
ereat, and the consequences indeed might have
been fatal, had not Bill rushed to his aid, and by his
fierce attack on the assailants put the remainder to
flight.

We were meanwhile joined by Fritz and Jack,
bringing a ruffled moor-hen and a nest of its eggs.
I explained to them that the assailants of Ernest
were a species of musk-rat called the ondatra, each
of them being provided with two little bags of musk,
which I showed to them. Jack and Fritz had, like
ourselves, seen no further traces of our hideous foe.
and we now all sat down together to a savoury stew,
prepared with rice, which my wife had busied her-
self with during our absence. She also cooked a
piece of Master Francis’ cabiai, but it was pronounced
by all of us to be detestable, and was forthwith flung
to the dogs. Jack and Fritz, however, produced
from their game bags some fine wild fruits of
various kinds, which they had gathered and brought
home for general behoof. These were now spread
out as a dessert, and by their delightful flavour and
taste speedily dispelled the remembrance of Frank’s
first contribution to the supplies of the table. The
boys were all wearied with their long ramble: be-
fore our dessert was finished, Master Jack was
nodding at my side; so I lost no time in putting our
tent in order, and making the needful preparations
EXCURSION TO THE GREAT BAY. 261

for bivouacking in safety on the spot; after which wa
all retired to enjoy the delightful repose which suc-
ceeds to healthy exercise.

The following morning we rose at the dawn and
set off in the direction of the sugar-cane field, in the
vicinity of which we had erected a small hut for
occasional use; but we found, on reaching the spot,
that the fragile erection had been blown down.
We accordingly erected our tent, and while my wife
made preparations for dinner, we proceeded to ex-
plore theeane-brake. In so far as any traces of the
horrible foes we most dreaded are concerned, we
were fortunately altogether unsuccessful. But as
we were about to return, our dogs set up a furious
barking, which induced me to call off the boys and
hasten into the open ground. Presently a troop of
large gray-coloured swine emerged from the cane-
brake at a trot. I thought at first it was the family
of our own sow, but their number and size soon
dispelled this idea. I took deliberate aim, and fired
both barrels of my gun, bringing down two of the
largest, the fall of which did not seem in any degree
to affect the rest. On taking a view of them more
calmly as I reloaded my gun, I was now satisfied
that they were a herd of the collared peecary.
Jack and Fritz, who were a little in advance of me,
and nearer the line of their march, brought down
two more, while the dogs assailed two in the rear,
which were added to our hooty.

I now despatched Fritz for the waggon, but he
262 EXCURSION TO THE GREAT BAY.

was not long gone when we heard several shots suc-
ceed one another at a little distance; and on his
returning with the waggon, we found it already
contained three of the wild hogs, which had been
brought down by Ernest and Francis. We set to
work immediately, and opened and cleaned our game
before putting it into the waggon. But though we
worked hard, it took us a considerable time before
we were ready to set off for the tent. The boys,
however, were so delighted with their success, that
they insisted on decorating the waggon with boughs
of trees, and we reached the tent long after our
expected dinner hour amid their songs and shouts
of triumph.

My wife gently chided-us for our delay, which
had occasioned her some anxiety, besides, as she
said, spoiling our dinner; nor was she altogether
inclined to commend us for our success, conceiving
that we had been guilty of an unnecessary and use-
less sacrifice of life. I told her, however, that I
conceived they would form a most valuable addition
to our winter store, and we forthwith set about pre-
parations for smoking and curing our winter’s pork
on the spot. These we continued for the three
following days, making, meanwhile, excursions in
various directions, while one was left behind to
superintend the fires with which our hams were
being smoked. On one of these occasions, we ex-
tended our journey to Prospect Hill to inspect our
farm, but great was our mortification to find that it
EXCURSION INTO A NEW COUNTRY. 263

had experienced the same fate as the first we erected.
Its materials were strewed in ruins on the ground,
and the cattle and poultry had entirely disappeared.
Our plans, therefore, for preserving and multiplying
our stock by such means, were obviously a complete
failure.

‘We now resolved on a more extended journey,
and having, meanwhile, secured our new supply of
provisions so as to preserve them in safety till our
return, we set off on the morning of the fourth day,
resolved to penetrate beyond the barrier which I
had only once before passed, when Jack and I went
in search of our stray ass, and were exposed to such
danger in our encounter with the buffaloes.

CHAPTER XXXV.

EXCURSION INTO A NEW COUNTRY.

Arrer a journey of about six hours, we arrived,
without any accident or adventure, at the barrier
which guarded the defile between what we now
considered our own country and that immediately
beyond. Fritz was greatly taken with the com-
manding position of a rising ground in its imme-
diate vicinity, and urged upon me the propriety of
erecting there a strongly fortified station, which
would enable us to defend the pass against all
enemies. I complied with his wishes so far as to
264 EXCURSION INTO A NEW COUNTRY.

construct a post somewhat in the Kamschatkan’s
fashion, composed of boards elevated on four stakes
at the corners, and sufficiently high to be out of the
reach of any savage animal. This we covered in,
and made as compact and comfortable as the time
would permit. Our excursions for the remainder of
the day were confined to its immediate precincts,
and we deferred till the succeeding morning our
exploratory journey into the unknown region which
lay at hand.

Nothing occurred to disturb us during the night,
and we were all up and ready for setting out soon
after dawn on the following morning. I took for
my companions Fritz, Ernest, and Jack, each well
armed and provided with well-stocked provision
bags and abundance of ammunition. My wife re-
mained behind at the station we had erected, with
little Francis for her companion, and Bill and the
jackall as her protectors. We found the palisade
of bamboos, and the hedge which we had placed as
a barrier at the pass, thrown down, and abundant
traces proved that the boa had approached by this
route.

On passing through this defile, we entered on a
new country, where I had only been once before.
Jack pointed out to his brothers the river where we
had erossed, and the spot where we encountered the
herd of buffaloes. We took for our route for a time
the banks of the stream; but on passing beyond it,
we found ourselves in a vast plain which seemed
EXCURSION INTO A NEW COUNTRY. 265

only bounded by the horizon. The sun was by this
time so far advanced in the heavens that its heat
became very oppressive, while the vegetation gra-
dually disappeared as we receded from the river,
till we seemed to be in the midst of a perfect desert.
We all began to suffer severely from the heat. The
dogs hung down their heads, with their tongues
stretched out, and my poor boys seemed to lose all
courage and power of endurance. After a painful
march of two hours, we at length attained to a large
rock which had attracted our attention for a con-
siderable time, and found its shade exceedingly ac-
ceptable and refreshing. Stretched on the ground,
we gazed in silence for a time on the singular
country around us. On the horizon we could dis-
cern a distant range of mountains, the bases of which
were lost in the tremulous vapours exhaled by the
heat. In the midst of the arid desert between, the
river meandered like a blue ribbon fringed with a
border of green.

While we thus lay, Ernest’s monkey slipped
away, and soon after the dogs also disappeared; but
we felt too fatigued to think of following them. I
had put into my bag some pieces of sugar-cane, and
these I now distributed to the boys. The sucking
of them greatly refreshed us, and helped to relieve
our intolerable thirst. It seemed also to restore our
appetites, and we now partook with relish of the
provisions we had brought with us. Refreshed by
our repast, we continued our observations while still
266 EXCURSION INTO A NEW COUNTRY.

resting under the grateful shade of the rock which
had been so opportunely discovered by us. While
I was engaged in conversation, however, Fritz, who
had mounted on a projecting ledge of rock, from
whence he had been looking intently in one direc-
tion for some time, suddenly called out that a party
of horsemen were riding toward us at full gallop.
“ T should not wonder,” said he, “ if they are Arabs!”
Ernest jumped up with unusual alacrity, attracted
by this novel announcement, and was followed by
the whole of us. Much discussion forthwith ensued,
and various conjectures of a very contradictory na-
ture were hazarded as to the actual objects in view,
one fancying them waggons, and another giraffs. I
had meanwhile been examining them through the
glass, and now informed them that the objects which
excited so much difference of opinion, I had no doubt,
were ostriches.

As the beautiful and stately birds drew near to
us, we could distinguish that the group consisted of
one male and two females, and we resolved, if pos-
sible, to capture one of them. Fritz and Jack were
despatched in search of the dogs, while Ernest and
I sought for some place where we could conceal
ourselves till their near approach. Jack and Fritz
soon returned with the dogs, which showed, from
their wet skins, that they had found some pool in
the vicinity in which to bathe and refresh them-
selves. Jack was already discussing the means by
which he would pounce on the ostrich, but I laughed
EXCURSION INTO A NEW COUNTRY. 267

at the enthusiastic boy, and explained to him how
impossible it was to cope in swiftness with a bird
which could outrun the fleetest horse.

We all crouched down under a tuft of high plants
which served to shelter us, holding the dogs so as
to prevent them from frightening the approaching
birds prematurely. Fritz meanwhile held his eagle
in readiness. As the ostriches drew near, the dogs
got sight of them, and struggled to escape; and as
they advanced, I perceived that they had become
aware of our presence. In an instant, as our dogs
suddenly sprang out, they were off from us with dis-
tended wings, skimming along as if their feet scarcely
touched the ground. At this instant Fritz unhooded
his eagle, which flew right at the largest of the three,
and fixing its talons in its head, forthwith attacked
its eyes. We followed, and soon saw it fall to the
ground, but, to our great regret, before we could
reach it, the eagle and the dogs had inflicted such
deadly injury, that the gigantic bird was expiring
under its wounds.

We were sadly mortified at this issue of the chase,
though it may perhaps be doubted if anything could
have been effected by us with our prey, even had
the eagle succeeded in blindfolding the ostrich with
his wings, and enabling us to capture him alive.
The evil, however, being now irremediable, we
plucked out its magnificent white plumes, and
placed them in our hats as a trophy of victory.
The boys were astonished, when we drew near, to
268 EXCURSION INTO A NEW COUNTRY.

observe the gigantic proportions of the bird, and
Fritz could not conceal his mortification at the im-
possibility of making such a remarkable addition to
our poultry-yard. Ernest, in his more philosophic
spirit, puzzled himself how to account for so enor-
mous a bird finding subsistence in the desert, and [
had to answer many questions before I could satisfy
the boys as to its nature and habits as a native of
the desert, and adapted by Providence for subsisting
on the scattered herbs and tufts of grass which cover
such vast arid plains.

While Fritz and I were still talking in this
manner, our attention was attracted by Jack, who
had followed the dogs, and was now waving his hat
and shouting for us to come and inspect some won-
derful discovery that he had made. We hurried on
accordingly, and found him exploring an ostrich’s
nest, if nest it could be called, which was no more
than a hole dug in the sand, and filled with about
thirty eggs as large as a child’s head. The dogs
had uncovered it, and one of the eggs was already
broken. The boys were already full of magnificent
projects. They would carry home the eggs, they
said, and hatch them in the sun. They were glad,
however, ultimately to content themselves with one
egg each, and even this they soon found an incon-
venient burden. I showed them at length how to
construct a sort of wicker cradle, with a light pole
to place on the shoulders, by means of which they
could relieve-each other, and carry the whole with
EXCURSION INTO A NEW COUNTRY. 269

much less fatigue. We now turned to the right,
directing our course towards the river. In pursuing
our new route we came upon a spring of water, sur-
rounded with a reedy marsh, in which we observed
abundant traces of the footprints of antelopes, buf-
faloes, and other wild animals, which doubtless came
hither to drink. We could also perceive that it was
here the dogs had been wallowing and refreshing
themselves during their absence from us; but we saw
no traces of our formidable enemy, the boa-constric-
tor. We sat down and rested ourselves beside this
fountain in the wilderness, and after refreshing our-
selves with a drink from the pure fountain, and par-
taking anew of the provisions which we had brought
with us, we filled our calabashes with water, and
prepared to set off. Suddenly, however, one of the
dogs, which had been scraping in the ground, turned
out something like a mass of damp earth, but which
proved to be an exceedingly small land tortoise.
The boys, already familiarized with the sea turtle,
were astonished to find one in such a locality, and
when several more were found, Ernest said, in a half
jocular vein, ‘Perhaps, papa, there has been a
shower of turtles here.” I explained the difference
between the two, and when the boys learned how
susceptible the land tortoise is of domestication, and
that it subsists on snails, caterpillars, and insects,
it was resolved to take some home with us as a
present to their mother, and I accordingly picked up
several of the smallest and put them in my knapsack.
270 EXCURSION INTO A NEW COUNTRY.

After resting for some time, we resumed our jour-
ney, following the course of a small stream which
had its origin in the fountain. Great was our delight,
after the sterile scenes through which we had been
wandering, to find that it led to a valley covered
with herbage, and sheltered by groups of trees.
Several little rills watered and fertilized the ground,
while the shelter of the trees protected the soil from
the burning rays of the sun. We were so delighted
with this beautiful spot that we called it the Oasis
of the Desert. We perceived, from time to time,
various troops of buffaloes and antelopes at a distance,
but they were entirely out of our reach, and we could
perceive, moreover, that the wild animals we met
with were much more frightened by the sight of our
dogs than of ourselves. The beautiful valley into
which we had strayed gradually contracted as we
proceeded, and we at length found ourselves once
more on the open plain, and at no great distance
from the cave from whence Jack had carried off
the young jackall cub on my first visit to this new.
region.

Ernest’ hastened on before us, followed by one of
the dogs, towards the Jackall Cave, with the view,
as I supposed, of resting in its shade till we should
come up to him. All at once I was alarmed by a ery
of terror, and hastened forward to the spot. Ernest
presently appeared running toward us, pale as death,
and crying, in accents of terror, ‘‘ A bear! a bear!
it is after me!’ I seized my gun, and holding it
EXCURSION INTO A NEW COUNTRY. 271

ready to fire on the instant, I advanced towards the
enemy which now appeared. An enormous bear
had rushed out, and was now followed by another,
as the dogs fearlessly flew to attack the foremost
one. Fritz took up a position alongside of me with
the utmost coolness and intrepidity, while Jack and
Ernest remained, with natural timidity, in the rear.
Our first shot was without effect, but we took de-
liberate aim a second time, and had the satisfaction
of perceiving that both the shots had told. We
charged again, and watched for a favourable oppor-
tunity for following up our advantage; but the fear
of wounding our brave defenders, which were now
engaged in close struggle with the bears, compelled
us to hold our hands, All the rage of these fierce
assailants was now directed against the dogs, which
were already wounded in various places, and seemed
on the point of being defeated.

In this extremity I encouraged Fritz to advance,
and taking our aim within a few paces of the bears,
I fired at the one, while Fritz directed his gun
against the other. Both of our shots told with deadly
effect, and now drawing a pistol from my belt, I
advanced and discharged its contents at the head of
the foremost bear. Fritz, almost at the same instant,
gave the coup de grace to the other, and both of our
terrible assailants lay the next instant dead at our
feet.

“ God be praised!” I exclaimed, “‘ we have escaped
from most imminent danger. Render thanks tc

\
272 EXCURSION INTO A NEW COUNTRY.

Ieaven, my dear boys, for so great a deliverance.”
After we had assured ourselves of the death of our
two assailants, we approached to contemplate them
more nearly, followed by Jack and Ernest, who
now ventured, for the first time, to advance. I
asked Ernest now what had led him to enter the
bears’ den. “Ol!” replied he, with a voice still
tremulous with fear, “I had the idea of giving
Jack a fright as he drew near, by crying like a
wild beast.” I took occasion to point out to him
the impropriety of all such attempts to frighten
others, and expressed a hope that this would be a
warning to him never to attempt such a thing
again.

The boys soon forgot all fear in their delight at
our success, and examined, with the most lively
interest, the immense size of the bears, their great
muscular strength, and their powerful teeth and
claws. Jack and Ernest had each their project for
the application of the spoils of our assailants; but it
was already time to think of returning, and as we
could not now meddle with them, we covered up their
carcassesin the cave, and hastened back to the spot
where my wife was already impatient for our re-
turn.

We were welcomed back with the liveliest de-
monstrations of joy, and I observed, with pleasure,
that our supper was already prepared. While par-
taking of it we recounted our adventures, and my
poor wife’s eyes filled with tears on learning of the
EXCURSION INTO A NEW COUNTRY. 273

ereat danger from which we had been so providen-
tially delivered. I found she had not been idle
during our absence, and was particularly gratified at
a discovery she had made of a species of greasy white
earth, which I had little doubt was pipeclay. She
had, with the aid of her little companion, collected
fodder for the cattle, and found a place where water
was procurable in abundance. She had also accu-
mulated a sufficient quantity of wood to supply the
needful fires for our protection during the night.
We were so fatigued, that, when I called the
others at daybreak the following morning, I found
them all very unwilling to leave their comfortable
couches. We were dressed, however, at last, and
after a hasty breakfast we harnessed our beasts to
the cart and set off in the direction of the cave.
On approaching, we were surprised to find a large
concourse of birds already assembled near it. We
held in the dogs for a few moments, and watched
the proceedings of this singular group, which we
goon found were birds of prey already assembled to
feast on our spoils. As we drew near, a bird of
immense size came sweeping through the air, and
just as it was stooping to alight among them, Fritz
fired and brought it dead to the ground. At the
report of the gun the whole band of marauders rose
on the wing and rapidly disappeared in different
directions. Fortunately we had arrived before any
great ravages had been perpetrated by the spoilers,
and we lost no time in transferring our prizes to

N
274 EXPEDITION OF THE BOYS.

the cart, on the top of which Fritz also threw the
large condor which he had shot; and thus laden we
hastened to return to the tent.

CHAPTER XXXVI.
EXPEDITION OF THE BOYS.

AN entire day was occupied with the preparation of
our bears. After having skinned them, I cut off
the hams, and separated the remainder into con-
venient pieces, which we prepared by means of the
smoke of green wood, as we had already done with
the peccaries. The fat was carefully preserved
under my wife’s directions, and the remainder was
left for our dogs, though they were not long of being
joined by flocks of birds of prey, that assembled and
picked the bones perfectly clean. The skeletons
so attracted the attention of the boys, that Ernest
insisted on having them home to add to his museum.
As for the skins, we brought all our experience to
bear, and employed our best talents as eurriers in
dressing them, so as to preserve the fur and make
the leather soft and pliable. The boys had also
added to our stores by the discovery of a species of
pepper, which we now employed, not only in the
preservation of our bear-hams and preserved meat,
but also rubbed the skins well with it, and stuffed
EXPEDITION OF THE BOYS. 275

with the same preservative seeds the skin of the con-
dor, which Ernest was anxious to keep.

The work of dressing skins and preserving pec-
cary and bears’ hams was not exactly the kind of
labour which the boys had looked forward to when
our expedition was proposed, and they began bv
this time to manifest unmistakeable symptoms of
dissatisfaction with our peaceful and somewhat
monotonous employments. It was decided, there-
fore, that the boys should set off alone on an excur-
sion into the strange country beyond the river.
The proposition at once revived their drooping
spirits, and was hailed with the utmost delight.
Ernest. alone heard it with indifference, and chose
rather to stay behind, while Francis, on the contrary,
pressed so eagerly to be permitted to join the expe-
dition, that I was forced at last to yield a reluctant
consent,

Fritz, Jack, and Francis were speedily in the
saddle; and gaily wishing us good-by, they set off at
a gallop through the defile, while Ernest contentedly
wished them a pleasant journey and a safe return.
It was not without much anxiety that I saw them
depart, but I felt the necessity of accustoming them
to provide for themselves, not knowing how soon
they might be deprived of my guidance. I had also
considerable reliance on the prudence and courage
of Fritz, whose coolness and self-command J had
repeatedly had reason to admire; and being well

armed and mounted, and accompanied by two of our
(80) 18

N
276 EXPEDITION OF THE BOYS,

strong and faithful dogs, I had good grounds for
confidence in their safety. I failed not, however,
to commend them to the good providence of God,
praying that he who had brought back the sons of
Jacob in peace, would also watch over my dear
boys.

My wife and I resumed our domestic occupations,
and Ernest set to work to cut the ostrich eggs in
two, so as to make cups of their shells. This he
effected in an ingenious manner, by surrounding
them with a string dipped in vinegar, which slowly
eat away the shell. The inner membrane was as
tough as parchment, and had to be cut with a knife.
But this was easily effected. Another occupation
proved still more to his taste. I had discovered a
small cavern near the tent, and we both set off to
examine it. The minerals which it contained greatly
interested him; and I was highly pleased to discover
among them a block of chalk, which split into thin
lamine as transparent as glass. Jrom this we de-
tached a piece about two feet square, and of nearly
the same thickness, which we carried to the tent, to
the great delight of my wife, when I assured her
that I would be able to make of it excellent window-
panes for our dwelling. Whatever restored to us
any of the old usages to which we were familiar in
Europe, seemed to possess a peculiar charm for her.

These occupations kept us busy during the whole
day, and towards evening we drew near the fire,
where our good manager was busy preparing our
EXPEDITION OF THE BOYS. 277

supper. Ernest and I were discussing various pro-
jects, and beguiling the time till our rovers should
return to partake with us of the evening’s repast.
A savoury odour already gave promise of an accept-
able supper, which our labours had sufficiently pre-
pared us to enjoy. We were not condemned to a
long trial of our patience. We heard the sounds of
approaching steps, and presently our young hunts-
men galloped up, hailing us as they came in sight
with a shout of joy and triumph. Jack and Francis
had each a young antelope attached to their saddles,
and the appearance and movements of Fritz’s game-
bag denoted that it also contained some living
animal.

“The chase for ever!” cried Jack; “ Storm and
the buffalo are famous coursers. Look at the prizes
we bring, and Fritz has others in his pouch; two
beautiful Angora rabbits, and a bird which will
guide us at any time that we are in want of honey!”
Francis had also his tale to tell, and Fritz was no
less eager; so that we could hardly get at their
several adventures and fortune, from the anxiety of
each to have his own told. ‘“ But that is not all,”
exclaimed Fritz, when his brothers were at length
silent; “‘we have driven a whole troop of antelopes
within the defile, so that we can take them when-
ever we think fit.” ‘“ And youalso,” said I to Fritz,
“have forgot something, for you omit to notice the
kind providence which has returned you all in safety
from the desert, where you had none other but God
278 EXPEDITION OF THE BOYS,

for your protector. Let us return thanks to him for
his great goodness, before anything else is done.”

It was not till we had united together in this sin-
cere service of thanksgiving, that I observed Jack’s
face to be considerably swollen, and inquired the
cause, when Fritz proceeded to relate the following
narrative of their adventures :—

“On quitting you, we set out at a quick trot for
the Green Valley. In a short time we reached the
extremity of the defile, from whence we could obtain
a commanding view of the surrounding country.
We speedily observed a herd of quadrupeds in the
distance, which we conceived must either be deer,
antelopes, or gazelles. I immediately formed the
plan of getting beyond them, so as to drive them
towards our present lodging. Our first proceeding
was to call in the dogs, and hold them in leash, as
we had learned from experience that the wild ani-
mals generally held them in greater fear than our-
selves. :

“We now separated, so as to command different
points. Francis followed the course of the river,
which served to conceal him; Jack occupied the
centre; while I, mounted on my onagra, took a cir-
cuitous route towards the right, with the view of
driving the herd toward the centre. We now ad-
vanced with the utmost caution. As we drew nearer
the herd began to show symptoms of agitation. They
ceased to graze, and the young ones began to gather
in closely towards their dams, which now stood with
EXPEDITION OF TIIE BOYS. 279

head erect, and ears turned, as if listening to every
sound. Stopping from time to time, we gradually
approached the position at which we aimed, when,
on a concerted signal, we loosed the dogs, and set
off together at a gallop. The chase now became of
the most exciting character. We had little difficulty,
however, to contend with. To our great joy the herd
crossed the river, and made for the defile, so that we
had no trouble in driving them before us through the
gorge. Our next difficulty was how to retain them
there. Various projects were suggested, but they
all seemed more or less objectionable or impracti-
cable, till we adopted the extremely simple plan of
stretching a cord at some height across the whole
defile. To this we suspended the ostrich feathers
we had stuck in our hats, our handkerchiefs, and
various other articles, the motion of which effectually
scared them.”

“ A happy thought,” said I; “it will answer ad-
tirably during the day, and probably there is little
reason to apprehend that they will move far in the
dark. But was this admirable device entirely ori-
ginal?” “No,” said Fritz, “it is not my own sug-
gestion. I read of it in Le Vaillaut’s Voyage to
the Cape of Good Hope. It is employed by the ~
Hottentots for a nearly similar purpose.”

“Well, my boy,’ I replied, “I am very happy
to find that you can turn your reading to such good
account. But now, what is your purpose with the
rabbits you have brought? Should they stray intu
280 EXPEDITION OF THE BOYS,

our garden, I fear your mother will hardly thank
you for such a gift.” Fritz, however, explained that
he had thought of putting them on Shark Island,
where they might breed without risk of injury to
anything, and would supply us with both food and
fur. Their capture, it seemed, was due to his eagle,
which had pounced down among a large troop of
them, and wounded three, two of which Fritz rescued
with little injury, while the eagle found his reward
in devouring the third.

Jack, who had been waiting with some degree of
impatience, now took up the tale, and told us that,
while Fritz was in pursuit of his rabbits, he and
Francis had riden off, followed by the dogs, who
presently gave chase to some little animals. They
both followed eagerly in pursuit, and were not long
of running down the two beautiful creatures they
had brought with them. Jack pronounced them to
be fawns, while I, on the contrary, had little doubt
of their being antelopes. On this point, however,
Jack was very indifferent, appealing to me rather,
if I did not think it a famous chase ?

Jack, continuing his narrative, remarked that,
having secured their captives, they set off to rejoin
their brother ; ‘“ but,” said he, “ while we were mov-
ing along leisurely, we were struck by the curious
proceedings of a bird, which flew along before us
as if trying to provoke us with its singular notes.
It flitted along before us as if decoying us to follow,
and alternately excited us to mirth and anger.
EXPEDITION OF TIE BOYS. 281

Francis, whose head is full of the marvels of fairy
tales, seriously suggested that it was without doubt
an enchanted prince, who invited us to become his
deliverer. See, then, I replied, how I will dissolve
the charm; and as I spoke, I presented my gun at
the little stranger. But Fritz, who had now joined
us, set up a laugh as he reminded me that my piece
was loaded with ball, and I should probably lose my
shot. It will be better, said he, to follow the bird,
and see where he will lead us.

“We accordingly made the little bird our guide,
and pursuing our route, still keeping it in view, it
at length stopped just over a bees’ nest. It proved,
however, a mischievous guide. We consulted what
was to be done; but Francis recalled to mind our
experience at Falcon’s Nest, and cautiously held
aloof. Fritz was willing to advise as to the mode
of attack, but he also declined to share in the assault,
so that I was left to do the best I could. I produced
some sulphur matches which chanced to be in my
pouch, and striking a light, I applied them burning
to the hole. Presently a rumbling noise was heard
' within, and I dropped the lighted matches into the
- nest. In another second the whole swarm was about
me, and, before I could mount my buffalo and ride off,
1 was sharply stung both on the face and hands.”

“Well, my boy,” said I, “ you have given better
proof of courage than prudence. Go now and get
your mother to apply something to your face, to
allay the swelling.”
282 THE OSTRICH HUNT.

Our first work was to construct a sort of wicker-
cage, in which both the rabbits and the antelopes
could be placed, and so safely transported to Rock
House. The bird which had so curiously acted as
their guide to the bees’ nest, I had no doubt, was
the “ cuckoo bird,” well known to naturalists for
this singular display of sagacity. Its conduct, how-
ever, suggested to me the idea that we could not be
the first men it had seen in our new country, and I
formed the resolution of constructing a fortress on
Shark Island, and mounting there our two cannons,
which would completely command the coast in case
of an attack from the interior.

After supper we lighted our fires, heaped fresh
supplies of green wood on the fire kindled within
the hut we had erected for smoking our hams and
bears’ flesh, and then cheerfully retired to rest.

CHAPTER XXXVI.
THE OSTRICH HUNT.

I cattep my sons the following morning at break
of day to prepare for our departure. Our bears’
meat, and other provisions, were already abundantly
smoked, and it was now drawing so near the closa
of summer that I was longing to be home. I was
anxious, however, to pay another visit to the os-
trich’s nest before our departure, to see if we might
THE OSTRICH HUNT. 283

not meet with better success than on a former oc-
casion.

We decided on making this excursion on the back
of our steeds, as it was desirable to proceed with as
little delay as possible. Fritz gave up to me his
onagra, and took the young colt, and Jack and Fran-
cis were provided as usual. Ernest, on the contrary,
was content to rest beside his mother, to whom,
indeed, he might be said to supply the place of the
truant Francis. We took with us the dogs as usual,
and set off for the Green Valley. As we rapidly
passed the scenes of preceding adventures, we failed
not to note them. To the rock from whence Fritz
had first observed the ostriches we gave the name of
Ostrich Rock.

While Fritz and I rested under the rock, Jack
and Francis galloped off at full speed over the plain,
which was so level that I had no fear of losing sight
of them. They passed the chief object of our in-
terest, the ostrich’s nest, to which we now directed
our course. When we had nearly reached it, we
observed objects moving on the horizon, which
proved to be four noble ostriches, a male and three
females, advancing toward us. Fritz, who had set
his heart on taking one of these beautiful birds
alive, prepared his eagle so as to prevent the fatal
results of his former attempt. As they drew near
we held the dogs close to us, and remained quite
immoveable, so as to appear like inanimate objects;

‘so that they were within pistol shot of us before
284 TUE OSTRICH HUNT.

they stopped. I held my lasso ready in my hand,
and at the right moment threw it with the utmost
skill I could muster; but instead of encircling his
“Tegs, as I had intended, it wound round his body,
only confining his wings. This, indeed, consider-
ably impeded his movements, and in an instant both
Fritz and I were after him at our utmost specd.
Our chances, however, would have been slight, had
not Jack and Francis appeared opportunely riding
toward us. On seeing them, the ostrich turned, and
Fritz took advantage of the movement to let his
eagle fly. At one swoop it alighted on its head,
and annoyed, apparently, to find its beak fastened, it
struck violently with its wings, so as to stun the
unfortunate bird, while we rode up alongside and —
assailed it close at hand. Jack, who had been
watching his opportunity, now threw his lasso dex-
terously round the legs of the ostrich, which stag-
gered forward, and the next instant fell to the
ground. A shout of triumph hailed our success,
and we hastened to dismount and secure our prize.
Fritz called off his eagle; and as the prostrate bird
continued to struggle violently, I threw my hunting-
pouch over its head, and to our delight it at once lay
still as a lamb. I now ventured to approach it,
and fastened the legs firmly with cords, so as just to
admit of its walking. TI also secured the string by
which its wings were held, and I finished by attaching
cords to serve as reins by which to guide it. I had
discovered, however, the great secret of quieting by
THE OSTRICH HUNT. 285

blindfolding it, which, I found sufficed to render it
altogether passive in our hands.

No sooner, however, was our first joy at our suc-
cess somewhat moderated, than doubts and difficulties
began to suggest themselves. ‘“ A fine prize, indeed,”
said Jack, “ but what are we to make of it, now that
we have got it? How shall we ever make such a
giant yield obedience ?”

“Fear not,” said I, “ education will tame the wild-
est natures. We must do with the ostrich as the
Indians do when they have captured a wild elephant.
They tie it to two strong tame ones, and it is soon
compelled to obey, whether it will or no.” “Very
good,” replied Jack, laughing, “‘ but in that case we
would need to catch two other ostriches to bring
this one to reason, unless you think that Fritz and I
can supply their places.” “ Dismiss yourjesting for
the present,” said I; “it is not at all indispensable
that we should have ostriches for the purpose, the
bull and buffalo will answer our purpose equally
well; while you and your brother, armed with goads,
may employ yourselves to good purpose in urging it
on.” ;
The plan was hailed with delight, and we forth-
with proceeded to put it in execution. All the ropes
and tords we had with us were brought into requi-
sition to secure its legs, so as to retard its motions,
and to tie it to the two bulls, which were placed one
on each side. The two riders then jumped into their
saddles, and I pulled the bandage off the head of the
286 THE OSTRICH HUNT.

ostrich. For an instant it stared about, as if per-
plexed and astonished at its position; but it soon
began to start and struggle violently. On a given
signal the boys gave the spur to their sturdy coursers,
between which it was secured; and after a little
unavailing struggling, it set off between them at a
tolerably quick pace.

Leaving the boys to manage our captive, which
we had secured so effectually as to be entirely under
their control, Fritz and I set off in search of the
ostrich nest. We had little difficulty in finding the
spot, and as we approached, a female bird rose from
the nest, and fled swiftly into the desert. This sight
was highly acceptable to us, as it satisfied us that
the nest had not been abandoned, and that the eggs
still retained the principle of life. As we had had
this object specially in view, I selected some of the
eggs and put them carefully in a bag I had brought
on purpose packed with cotton. This I laid on the
back of the onagra, and then covered up the nest, in
the hope that the ostrich would return to it without
discovering the theft.

We now set out on our return home. On over-
taking Jack and Francis, we found their captive
moving along with them as if in sullen submission to
an inevitable fate, or only at rare intervals venturing
an ineffectual struggle.

It would be difficult to convey an idea of the
astonishment of my wife and Ernest at the sight of
our gigantic prize. As for Ernest, he seemed sadly
THE OSTRICH HUNT. 287

mortified, and said, with an air of chagrin, “ Why is
it that I never share with you in the glory or the de-
light of such a chase?” ‘In truth, my good Ernest,”
said I, “it is because you have no love for such
scenes of toil and danger, but prefer remaining at
home, like a philosopher, and quietly pursuing your
studies in languages or natural history. Fritz and
Jack, it is true, surpass you in strength and dexterity
in the chase; but should a strange ship ever visit
our island, your turn will come, and we shall all,
most probably, be dependent on you for the means
of communicating with the strangers.” My wife,
however, thought rather of the supplies of food
which so large and profitless a bird must consume,
and seemed to think that we had shown more skill
than wisdom in putting ourselves to so much trouble
to secure our captive. Jack, however, took a dif-
ferent view of the case, and was disposed to present
his buffalo forthwith to Ernest, on condition of having
the ostrich made over to him as his steed.

We now secured the ostrich firmly between two
trees, and the remainder of the day was spent in
preparing for our return home on the morrow. We
started next day, after an early breakfast, and pre-
sented a most singular cavalcade. The ostrich was
placed as formerly between the bull and the buffalo.
He renewed his struggles as on the previous day,
but with equally little success, and we were soon in
motion, my wife taking her seat in the cart, with
Ernest for her driver.
288 THE OSTRICH HUNT.

We made a halt at the entrance of the defile,
where the boys had constructed their ingenious bar-
rier of handkerchiefs, ostrich feathers, &c., in order
to keep back the antelopes or gazelles. We set to
work, and constructed a strong and high palisade of
bamboo across the entire defile, sufficient to exclude
any animal that could not climb, and on each side of
this we planted a row of the prickly thorn, so as
ultimately to form an effectual rampart between us
and the region beyond. This work occupied us so
long, that we were only in the vicinity of the hut we
had erected when we caught the peccaries by the
time night began to set in. We were glad to find
that our smoked hams were safe and well preserved;
and our hut sufficed us for a comfortable resting-place-
for the night.

It was long past noon on the following day before
we found ourselves at Rock House. Our ostrich
greatly retarded us, and the load of provisions we had
to transport from our last resting-place added to our
labour; but we at length reached our pleasant home,
and were delighted once more to rest beneath the
shelter of its roof.
OSTRICH TRAINING. 289

CHAPTER XXXVIII.

OSTRICH TRAINING.

We now resumed our abode at the summer lodging
we had constructed at Tent Jlouse, in the neigh-
bourkood of Rock House, and my wife set to work,
with the help of the younger boys, to air it, and put
it in order, while Fritz and I employed ourselves in
disposing of the various stores we had brought home.

We also devoted as much time as we could spare
to the ostrich. I secured it to one of the stout bam-
boo posts of our house, and relaxed the cords suffi-
ciently to allow it as much freedom of action as was
at all consistent with its safety.

Our next step was to look after the ostrich eggs.
We immersed the whole in warm water, and found
reason to believe that five of them still retained the
principle of life. These, therefore, we resolved to
try and hatch, if possible, much in the same way as
the Egyptians are accustomed to do with their poultry.
With this view I constructed an oven, heated as
nearly as possible to the proper temperature, and
lined with cotton down, into which the eggs were
wrapped.

We then proceeded to Shark Island, carrying
with us the two rabbits. We partially constructed

_a burrow for them, leaving themselves to finish it
according to their own superior art. We also
290 OSTRICH TRAINING.

erected a neat little hut for the pair of small ante-
lopes the boys had captured, and stored it with
abundance of provisions, so as to attract them to its
shelter, while it was open so as to give them the
full range of the island. It was with considerable
regret that we transported the two beautiful, timid
little creatures to the island, as we would have
greatly preferred to have kept them at home; but
we feared that it would be impossible to restrain, the
dogs from injuring them, and we had to content our-
selves with watching their graceful movements as they
bounded over the island where we had lodged them.

Of all the tortoises which we had brought home,
only two remained alive, and these, it seemed, dis-
played such a penchant for my wife’s lettuces and
pot-herbs, that she protested against their being
admitted into the garden. Jack was accordingly
despatched with them to the marsh, as the place
most nearly resembling that from which we had
brought them. Scarcely had he arrived at the spot,
when I heard him shouting on Fritz to come and
bring a stout bamboo with him. I imagined the
sole object in view was to wage war on the unfortu-
nate bull-frogs which abounded in the marsh, but I
soon after saw the two approaching with an enor-
mous eel which they had found in one of the ingeni-
ous wicker-work traps constructed and set by Ernest
before we had last set out from home. My wife
gladly received it, and applied her best skill in cook-
ing part of it for our supper.
OSTRICIE TRAINING, 291

We now employed some of our spare time, daily,
in looking to the laying in of an ample provision
for the winter. Our smoked peccary and bears’
flesh and hams, as well as the abundance of fine
lard derived from the same source, were, of them-
selves, a store that seemed to set famine at defiance.
We also exerted ourselves to complete all needful
repairs and embellishments which involved the ne-
cessity of out-door labour, reserving all work, such
as the preparation of our block of tale for glass, or
the application of the porcelain earth to economic
purposes, until the rainy season put an end to any
out-door employments.

T also carried into effect an object I had long
kept in view, that of preparing sufficient ground in
the neighbourhood of our dwelling for the proper
planting of our seeds, which had been hitherto eon-
fided to whatever broken ground chanced to offer
itself for our use. To this work I summoned all
hands, and yoked the cattle to our ploughs, so as to
make as rapid and effectual work as possible; but
such was the intense heat, that we had to conduct
all our operations early in the morning, and a little
before sunset, so that all our exertions were re-
quired to accomplish the preparation of a very
limited area. Even with this needful cessation
during the heat of the day, and the very few hours
we were actually employed, the labour was very
great, and it required all the stimulus of rivalry as
‘ well as of hopeful anticipation, to keep the boys at
Go 19
292 OSTRICH TRAINING.

work, All, however, did their utmost, not even
Ernest failing me, so that we succeeded in breaking
up several acres of ground, which were amply suffi-
cient for sowing and planting our wheat, maize,
potatoes, and manioc root. Our labour was great,
and we seemed, for the first time, fully to appreci-
ate the meaning of the primal curse, Jn the sweat of
thy brow shalt thou eat bread! We all persevered,
however, with cheerfulness and assiduity, and many
a pleasant jest served to lighten our labour. Jack
especially, who was always full of spirit, vowed
that he was getting up an appetite which would
enable him to eat all the bread our next harvest
yielded. In the intervals of repose which the heat
compelled us to take, we set about the breaking in
of the ostrich. At first his violence was such that
all our efforts seemed in vain, but remembering the
happy effect that the fumes of tobacco produced in
subduing the wild nature of Fritz’s eagle, we tried
the same means, and with equal success, in dealing
with the ostrich. At first it produced complete in-
sensibility, but after a time it sufficed to moderate
his violence, and as he became more accustomed to
us, we relaxed his cords sufficiently to admit of his
wandering about the vicinity of our lodge, while
we tried every means to reconcile him to captivity
and familiarize him with us, by presenting to him
calabashes filled with sweet acorns, maize, rice, or
guavas. For a time, indeed, it refused all food,
and we felt inclined to restore it to liberty rather


PRAINING THE OSTRICH.
OSTRICH TRAINING, 293

than see it dic of starvation; but after we had used
some degree of force in compelling it to swallow
some balls of maize and butter prepared for that
purpose by my wife, we were saved all further
trouble on that aecount, and had the satisfaction of
seeing it partake heartily of the food put before it,
and at length even eat out of a calabash held in our
hands. —

Pursuing our various plans with patience and
perseverance, we had the satisfaction of seeing the
natural savageness of the bird gradually disappear.
We could now approach it without its attempting to
strike at us, and it even began to look to us for food
when we approached it. Our next step, therefore,
was to break it in for walking, running, or going at
whatever pace we desired. It was accordingly once
more yoked between the bull and buffalo, and though
it at first exhibited little inclination for such con-
strained movements, before a month had elapsed it
was so well broken in that I imagined I might now
venture to try it alone. For this purpose it was
indispensable that we should have something of the
nature of a bit and bridle, but I was considerably
embarrassed to contrive how to bit an animal with a
bill. A lucky thought, however, at length oecurred
tome. We had already observed the effect that the
absence of light had in subduing the violence of the
ostrich, and rendering it totally passive. I tried 3
the effect, and found that, when blindfolded, it stood
still, and could not be induced to proceed. I there.
294 OSTRICH TRAINING.

fore made a hood of skin, fitting closely to its head,
and having two holes corresponding to the eyes. ‘To
this I affixed two blinders, with whalebone springs,
and strings fastened to them, so that one or both
could be opened or closed at will. The device
answered perfectly. When the blinders were drawn
on the one side or the other, the ostrich turned
immediately in the opposite direction towards the
light, and when both were closed it immediately
stood still.

Our next work was to fit our novel prize with a
saddle and harness, and to finish its headgear with
an elegant plume of ostrich feathers. It was not
without considerable difficulty that it was induced to
submit to being mounted, and this could only be
ventured on at first when it was blindfold; but by-
and-by it got accustomed to this also, and the boys
were to be seen daily galloping along on their stout
and fleet courser, between Rock [louse and Falcon’s
Nest. I had some difficulty, however, in settling
the question of ownership. The buffalo, and even
the onagra, were put completely in the shade by
this novel courser, and both Francis and Ernest put
in claims for its possession. As, however, Jack
seemed to manage and suit it best, I decided in his
favour, conditioning, however, that it was not to be
regarded as exclusive property, but that all should
be allowed to ride it, and that, as from its great
strength it was capable of enduring much fatigue,
it was to be at my own comniand whenever I
OSTRICH TRAINING, 295

thought fit to employ it in carrying burdens or in
draught.

This decision amply satisfied Jack, while it recon-
ciled the others to the arrangement; so that all
went pleasantly on, and our prize became a source
of general delight. Meanwhile our attempt at arti-
ficial ostrich-hatching had so far succeeded that we
had three young ostriches, the drollest little crea-
tures imaginable. They were covered with down,
and looked like ducks mounted on stilts. One of
them died, however, on the following day, and not-
withstanding all our care, we feared that we were
doomed to be disappointed. By-and-by, however,
they acquired more strength, and partook freely of
boiled rice, maize steeped in milk, and the like
food, which my wife prepared for them, and we soon
had good hope of training up a pair of ostriches for
future use.

We had not neglected, meanwhile, the prepara-
tion of our bears’ skins, and to these we now gave
the finishing preparations, so that we found ourselves
provided with two warm and beautiful shaggy fur
coverings. Our next work was that of hatters. By
this time our hats and caps were nearly worn out,
and it was impossible to go about with our heads
exposed under the glaring heat of a tropical sun.
The point was discussed, and many schemes proposed.
At length I set to work and made a round block of
wood, on which I stretched the skins of the ondatra,
or musk-rat, over a thick layer of paste, composed
296 RETURN OF THE RAINY SEASON.

chiefly of fine isinglass. On allowing this to dry, it
took the exact shape of the mould, and as its colour
was objected to by the boys, after I had fitted a broad
rim to it asa protection to the eyes, I dyed the whole
with cochineal, and produced a hat which obtained
universal admiration. The first of these was given
to Francis, and as he insisted on adding to it a
plume of ostrich feathers, both my wife and I looked
on the really handsome and beautiful boy with
feelings of pride and pleasure, while his brothers,
thinking only of the hat, expressed their unqualified
approbation.

CHAPTER XXXIX

RETURN OF THE RAINY SEASON,

Tlavine succeeded in our attempt at hat manufac-
ture, we proceeded to complete similar coverings
for all, and found, as usual, that practice enabled us
greatly to improve on our first imperfect efforts.
When this work was completed, I was emboldened
by our success to try my hand at the manufacture
of pottery. We had brought home a considerable
quantity of the porcelain earth, and this I set the
boys to work up into a paste, mixing it with pounded
tale, while I constructed a very simple potter’s lathe
out of the wheel of one of the cannon carriages. On
this I formed cups, saucers, bowls, and dishes of
RETURN OF THE RAINY SEASON. 297

various kinds, which we exposed to a strong heat.
Many of them cracked or fell to pieces in the kiln,
but we persevered, and obtained a sufficient number
to reward us for our pains.

My wife was so much delighted with these additions
to her crockery and kitchen ware, that I proceeded to
make more complicated and elegant forms, by first
constructing moulds in which to shape them; and as
we had a quantity of coloured beads which were of no
use to us, I pounded these into a fine powder, and
employed them in giving beauty and variety of colour
to the new ware.

While we were thus engaged, the adden change
of the temperature, and the cloudy sky, had warned
us that all opportunity for pursuing out-door work
was now at an end, and the rainy season was once
more setting in. We found ourselves provided with
the most agreeable occupations, and amply furnished
with stores and provender for the winter, so that we
looked forward to our confinement at Rock House,
during the rainy season, as to a period of pleasant
relaxation.

The condor, which had been only sufficiently
prepared to admit of its being kept without spoil-
ing, was now taken in hand by Ernest, and, with the
assistance of his brothers, stuffed, so as to form an
important addition to our museum. For myself, the
turning-lathe was a source of constant occupation
and delight, and my wife made so many demands on
me that I became quite expert in its use. Ernest
298 RETURN OF THE RAINY SEASON,

also never wearied so long as he was permitted to
pursue his studies in the library, but the rest of the
boys were speedily wearied of the books, and I felt
somewhat at a loss to devise occupations for them.
It was, however, contrary to all rules of wise domestic
discipline, to permit the winter to pass away in idle-
ness, and I was casting about in my mind what to
suggest to them, when Fritz proposed that they
should try and make a light boat, like the kajack of
the Greenlanders he remembered to have read of,
which would enable them to move almost as swiftly
on the sea as their ostrich was capable of going with
them on land.

The proposition was unanimously approved of;
my wife alone withheld her encouragement, her
recent experience of the advantages of our new
boat having very partially sufficed to modify the
terror and apprehension with which she regarded
the sea, and every attempt to commit ourselves to its
treacherous waves. To me, however, the chief value
of the proposal was, that it would engage the boys
heartily in an employment of their own choosing,
and thus prevent them becoming a prey to weariness
and ennui. The frame of the new boat was formed
with bamboo and whalebone. It was made on a
larger scale than the kajack of the Greenlanders, so
as to admit of the rower sitting in it, instead of taking
his place ‘cross-legged like a tailor. Over this light
frame a covering of stout, but very light and pliant
rushes was woven and the whole covered and
RETURN OF THE RAINY SEASON, 299

completely saturated with warm pitch. When this
was thoroughly dried, it was so light that one of the
boys could lift it with ease, and as elastic as a ball
of India-rubber. The construction of this frame
kept the boys in full employment for several weeks,
_and amply supplied them with incentives to industry,
and with high anticipations of future pleasure. At
this stage of the kajack building I now lent my aid,
and stretched over the whole well prepared sheep-
skins, which were strongly sewed together, and the
whole filled in with gum, so as to render it com-
pletely water-tight. In conclusion, I fastened blad-
ders, filled with air, at either end, where they were
out of the way, and yet effectually secured its
buoyancy, and prevented it from overturning, or
from sinking, even should a hole be pierced through
its fragile fabric. We then made light oars with
bamboo, and constructed in the bow a seat with a
hole in it to receive a mast, should it hereafter be
found advisable to rig it with a sail.

One thing more was requisite to complete the
equipment of our new boat, so as to correspond to
the kajack of the Greenlanders, and this was a
waterproof and swimming costume, which should
render the boatman impervious to wet, and incap-
able of sinking even should his boat upset. On my
explaining this to the boys, they were impatient to
have it tried, and their mother kindly left off her
own work to supply Fritz with the required nautical
dress. The whale’s intestines supplicd an abun-
300 RETURN OF THE RAINY SEASON.

dance of material far superior to any artificial oil-
skin, and with the aid of her industrious needle,
Fritz was equipped with a complete suit, impervious
to wet, and so well put together, that, when it was
properly put on, he could float in the water with
as little danger of sinking as a bladder filled with
air.

Thus employed, the rainy season glided imper-
ceptibly away. The books which proved so unat-
tractive to the boys as a constant means of occupation,
afforded a very pleasant source of relaxation in the
evenings, and with the necessary attention to our
cattle, and the various other domestic duties, the
winter passed away cheerfully and agreeably. But
the time for our emancipation from the grotto once
more drew near. The rain gradually moderated.
The wind, which had occasionally blown a perfect
hurricane, calmed, and we soon had the pleasure of
walking out amid the new grass and fresh plants
of spring, and revisiting Falcon’s Nest, where our
fields of grain were already shooting up their green
blades.

The swimming-dress was the last work on which
we were occupied, and Fritz was impatient to put
its practical qualities to the test. One fine morning,
accordingly, we transported our canoe to the sea-
side, and T'ritz donned his novel dress. His ap-
pearance in it was so singular, that we were all
greatly amused, and when we had blown it full of
air, and tied the pipe by which it was filled, he
RETURN OF THE RAINY SEASON, 801

looked so like a huge walking sausage, that we were
obliged to hold our sides, our laughter became so
violent and irresistible. Fritz, however, was in
no degree discomposed, but marched straight down
to the beach, and plunging into the water, swam
off for Shark Island. We availed ourselves of
the same occasion to pay a visit to the island, and
ascertain how our antelopes and other colonists had
fared.

We followed Fritz with as little delay as possible,
and had the satisfaction of finding that not a drop of
water had penetrated through his new dress. The
success of our project afforded all of us the highest
pleasure, and the other boys besought their mother
to make similar dresses for each of them. The
little antelopes fled on our approach, but we had
taken care that they should have no cause to repent
of our visit. We renewed the supplies of their
hut, and left a good store of maize and rice, along
with fresh fodder, sprinkled with salt. We saw
abundant evidence that the hut we had erected
had served for their domicile during the winter, so
that we were amply repaid for our labour in erect-
ing it.

Refreshed with the sense of liberty and change of
scene after our long confinement, we amused our-
selves wandering along the beach, and gathering
coral and beautiful shells for our museum. We
remarked also great quantities of a peculiar specics
of sea-weed, some of which my wife carried to the
302 RETURN OF THE RAINY SEASON.

boat, and on ow return to the bay, removed it with
evident marks of care to the house. I was surprised
at her proceedings, and remarked, half jocularly,
that she seemed to have got hold of some precious
treasure, and asked her if it was a supply of marine
tobacco to replace. what had been already expended
of the sailors’ stores. She only replied, however,
laughingly, that I should know by-and-by the name
and virtues of the mysterious plant, so that I must
needs be content for the present with seeing her find
in it an object of value.

The ground, though still soft, and in many places
marshy from the long rains, was soon firm enough to
admit of our moving about. One day when we had
returned, greatly fatigued and faint, from a visit to
Falcon’s Nest, my wife presented to each of us a bowl
filled with a transparent jelly, of the most agreeable
flavour, and delicious from its coolness. We were
so much in need of some refreshment, that we had
advanced a considerable way in discussing this novel
treat before it occurred to us to inquire from whence
it had been procured. My wife laughingly kept us
in suspense for a little, asking if our superior wis-
dom could not discover it for ourselves; at length
she told us, to our surprise, that it was derived from
the sea-weed she had gathered on Shark Island, and
which is largely used at the Cape of Good Hope
in a similar way. I now remembered that both
Iccland and Irish mosses and alge are used in the
saine way, but-we had also to commend the skill of
RETURN OF THE RAINY SEASON, 303

our good cook, who had flavoured and sweetened it
so nicely as to render it alike palatable and refreshing
from its coolness,

We made a second and more leisurely excursion
to Shark Island, and found that our rabbits had not
only thriven in their new home, but were already
increased in number. The cocoa-nut palms, and
other young trees which we had planted, were also
in a healthy and flourishing state. From this we
proceeded to Whale Island, and there also we found
our plantations in an equally flourishing condition,
and our whole colony exhibiting abundant promise
of complete success, so that I could not help lifting
up my heart in gratitude to God, who had thus
cared for us amid the strange scenes in which our
lot had been cast, and had not only rescued us from
death, but had thus crowned us with loving-kindness
and tender mercy. .

Soon after this visit to our island colonies, it
occurred to me that it would be desirable to prepare
some large blocks of wood with which I conceived |
we might be able to bruise our grain as well as to
pound our plaster and fuller’s earth. I resolved,
therefore, to look out for a tree sufficiently large and
hard for my purpose; but on proceeding to make
preparations for an excursion, to my great surprise
T found that Ernest remained alone in the library, he
having preferred his books to the labour of an excur-
sion on which his brothers had set out.

The young bull alone remained in the stable,
B04 “RETURN OF THE RAINY SEASON.

Jack having chosen to mount the ostrich, while
his young brother already coveted the swifter and
stronger buffalo. I therefore took the bull, and set
out with the two young dogs for my sole companions.
IT took the way by the bridge, continuing my course
along the river side, so as to take a survey of the
fields of manioc and potatoes which lay in that
direction, From the length of time that had elapsed
since my last visit to this spot, I fully anticipated
secing abundant evidences of an approaching har-
vest. Great, therefore, was my disappointment, as
well as surprise, to find the whole a scene of deso-
lation. The young plants were torn up and trodden
under foot, and the ground broken into an irregular
scene of wreck and confusion. Bran and Tray, my
two companions, seemed to comprehend my feelings
of indignation and sorrow as I stood gazing on our
wasted fields, and set off apparently in search of
the despoilers. I had already discovered, by their
abundant footprints, that we owed the destruction
of this important branch of our provisions to the
swine, though I was still uncertain whether to ascribe
it to the wild peccaries, or to the brood of our own
errant sow. Presently, however, a continuous bark-
ing, squealing, and grunting, announced the approach
of the depradators, and our dogs appeared, driving
before them our own great sow, with a numerous
litter of young pigs. I was so angry at the mischief
they had wrought, that I instinctively presented my
gun as they approached, and brought down the two
THE BOYS’ ADVENTURES. 305

foremost young porkers, while the rest wheeled about
and disappeared, helter skelter, into the wood, up-
setting the two dogs in their sudden and precipitate
retreat. .

After selecting and marking trees suitable for my
purpose, I threw the two pigs across the buffalo, and
set off home; but my wife was so -gricved and morti-
fied at the account which I gave her of the irre-
parable mischief they had done, that she could
scarcely be persuaded to look on the spoils of the
destroyers. This, however, I satisfied her would be
a foolish piece of self-denial, which could in no
degree retrieve the mischief done; and soon, with
Ernest’s assistance, I had the satisfaction of seeing
one of the young pigs on the spit and roasting befora
the fire.

CHAPTER XL.
THE BOYS ADVENTURES.

Eryest and I were the sole company my wife had
to entertain at dinner, and as evening drew near we
began to feel somewhat anxious at the continued
absence of the boys. Iwas looking out in the direc-
tion of their expected approach, when suddenly Jack
appeared advancing at a rapid rate on his ostrich,
and followed, at considerable intervals, by Fritz and
Francis. The two last had the charge, apparently,
306 THE BOYS’ ADVENTURES.

of the fruits of the chase, and each carried on his
saddlebow a well-filled sack. The contents of these
proved to be of a very miscellaneous description.
They produced, first,*four specimens of the duck-
billed platipus, twenty ondatras, a kangaroo, an ape,
a musk-beaver, and half a dozen musk-rats.

Sundry other novelties were produced from the
well-filled bags, and all the three young sportsmen
were impatient to begin the account of their expedi-
tion. JEExclamations, narrative, and questioning, all
went on together, and for a time little could be made
out of the confused Babel. Jack was the first to
obtain a hearing, and burst out, ‘“O, papal my
ostrich goes like the wind; I feared that I would
actually lose my breath. My eyes watered, till I was
obliged to shut them. You must make me a mask
with glass lenses; it is indeed altogether indispen-
sable, so must haveit!’’ “ By no means, Mr. Hasty,”
I replied, “you must not have it.’ “And why
not?” exclaimed he, with a mortified look. ‘In the
first place, because you demand it in so imperative
a manner; and, secondly, because I see no such calls
on your own industry as should render it difficult for
you to make it yourself” The thoughtless boy at
once asked my pardon so promptly that I could not
say another word. We had now to hear an account
of their proceedings, not the least novel of which, in
their own estimation, had been the necessity of pro-
viding and cooking their own dinner. While my
good wife was busily employed in spreading the
THE BOYS’ ADVENTURES. 307

table for our evening’s repast, I could see that the
account of this portion of the day’s proceedings
afforded her no little gratification and amusement,
and, as I thought, stimulated her to provide for us a
supper more carefully and attractively equipped even
than was her wont. She placed the. roasted pig,
with a well-satisfied air, on the centre of the board,
disposed around it an unusually ample array of
agreeable accompaniments, and finished by producing
a flagon of our spiced hyromel; reserving, for a
second course, a dish of cassava, prepared with
sirup of sugar, and cooked with butter like sweet
macaroni.

The boys laughingly acknowledged that their
morning’s meal, though good enough for a party of
hungry hunters, would stand no comparison with
this product of their mother’s skill. We next set
about the examination of the game more leisurely.
Among the contents of their bags, I was also de-
lighted to find the “carding thistle,” or “ fuller’s
teasle,”’ which I looked upon as a valuable addition
to my working apparatus. They also produced
cuttings of cinnamon and sweet potatoes, and other
contributions to our stock of vegetable food, all of
which were hailed by my wife with delight, and
which she resolved herself to plant, on the morrow,
in our kitchen garden.

The musk-rats and other small game were speedily
passed over, but the kangaroo, which we had only
once before seen, attracted universal attention, and

ey 20
308 THE BOYS’ ADVENTURES.

set our philosophic Ernest to reason on its peculiari-
ties and very remarkable construction. The singu-
lar length of its hind legs, which enable it to leap
seven or cight feet from the ground, was examined
with evident curiosity, and its enormous tail, with
which it defends itself, was no less an object of
interest and wonder.

We now set too to skin the kangaroo, and I had
already devised, in my own mind, a plan by which
our labour would be greatly abridged. The appa-
ratus which I constructed was received with greater
merriment than admiration by my young workmen;
however, I said nothing in its favour, but directed
them to suspend the kangaroo by the hind legs at a
convenient height. With the help of a large syringe,
which I found in the surgeon’s medicine chest, I had
completed my apparatus, fitting into this two valves,
so as to make of it a somewhat imperfect, yet suffi-
ciently practical air-pump. I then made a slight
incision in the skin, and inserted the point of the
syringe into this, tying the skin tightly round it,
while the boys were plying me with good-humoured
jests which sufficiently showed that they had no great
faith in the success of my plan. Setting to work,
however, I gradually inflated the skin, blowing out
the kangaroo into a shapeless mass. I then directed
the boys to beat it with a flat board, so as to disengage
such parts as still adhered by the force of the air,
after which, on ripping up the skin, the whole came
off without the slightest trouble or further exertion.
TUE BOYS’ ADVENTURES. 3809

The success was hailed by the boys with the
honest gratulations of unsophisticated youth, and I
now explained to them that, in many animals, the
skin is joined to the flesh by cellular tissues, which
are extremely delicate and minute; when, therefore,
I forcibly inflated these, they burst, and thus the
skin was of necessity disengaged from the flesh. IT
continued my application of this ingenious device
till the whole of the animals they had brought with
them were skinned. Practice, as usual, increased
my dexterity, so that in a short time, what had
formerly been a tedious and unpleasant operation,
could be finished rapidly, and without discomfort or
fatigue.

The following day I set off with the boys to cut
down the tree I had marked out for use, taking with
me the needful supply of ropes, saws, hatchets, &c.,
and yoking the buffaloes to the large waggon to
bring it home. We soon succeeded in bringing it
to the ground, and after lopping off the branches, we
cut it into blocks of about four feet long. These I
hollowed out, so as to make wooden mortars, into
which I fitted the large bones of the whale as
pestles, and then constructed a series of levers, by
means of which the whole could be worked at once;
so that by their means one of us could do more work
than the whole united force of our colony was able
to effect before, and it was so easily set agoing, that
my wife found herself independent of our aid.

The fowls gathered around our mill as it was
310 THE BOYS’ ADVENTURES.

worked, watching to pick up any grain that was
spilled, and especially gratified when they could get
at the bruised rice or wheat which had already been
subjected to our new machine. The curious groups
of European and foreign birds presented a singular
spectacle, but I observed that our young ostriches
frequently deserted the yard, and on following them
I discovered that they had already learned their way
to our corn field, which was now ripe and ready for
cutting.

We were, in truth, burdened by our riches, and
my wife lamented to me the impossibility of over-
taking all the work before us. Our harvest had to
be reaped, our potato and manioc roots to be gathered,
and the time was at hand when the herring shoal
would reach the coast, followed almost immediately
by the white fish. It was indeed difficult to know
what to do first, but I consoled my wife by reminding
her how very different were the difficulties we ori-
ginally contemplated, and satisfied her that we would
still be able to overtake all our work. We know
from experience, I said, that in the dry soil, from
whence all moisture is so rapidly evaporated, both
the potatoes and the manioc roots may be safely left,
while we look after our cereal harvest, and for the lat-
ter we must adopt a more rapid method, and one better
suited to the climate than our old Swiss practice.

I proceeded, in the first place, to prepare a
thrashing-floor in the immediate vicinity of Rock
House, by levelling a sufficient area, upon which we
TUE BOYS’ ADVENTURES. 311

poured water, and then beat it quite flat and hard
with large mallets. When the sun had completely
dried it, the same operation was repeated several
times, till we obtained a solid floor, without a single
crack or crevice, and almost as hard as rock. This
done, I ordered out the buffalo and Storm, and
placing the palanquin suspended between them, set
off for our corn field, bringing also the large waggon
in our train. TI set all to work immediately, and
taking myself as many stalks as I could grasp in
my hand, I cut off the ears and threw them into the
basket. “There,” said I to Fritz, ‘is the Italian
mode of reaping.” “A very lazy and wasteful
mode,” my wife replied, as she pointed to the stalks
I was leaving, which looked like an unreaped field.
I desired her, however, to reserve her judgment till
we had finished our work. But indeed, said I, you
know that we have no need of the straw here where
fodder is so abundant, and dry grass can be gathered
at any time as much as we will.

Steadily pursuing our work, hamper after hamper
was filled with the rich ears of grain, and when the
waggon was sufficiently loaded, the whole was trans-
ferred to Rock House. The same process was repeated
till nothing remained but the long straw, partially

trodden down in our reaping operations. We now
hastened back to Rock House, and I desired my wife
and Ernest to spread out the grain upon the thrash-
ing-floor we had prepared, while we got ready the
cattle for the next proceeding,
312 THE BOYS’ ADVENTURES.

Now commenced the operation of thrashing by a
process which afforded the utmost amusement to all.
The boys were speedily in the saddle, and the
onagra, buffalo, and bull coursing rapidly round over
the grain, while Ernest and I busied ourselves with
pitchforks, shaking it out and throwing it under
their feet, so as to be equally trodden out, and effec-
tually thrashed. As usual with the introduction of
strange and novel processes, my project had furnished
the subject for a considerable amount of good-
humoured jesting and mirth; and though the boys
thought it famous sport to gallop about on their
eoursers among the grain, they made no secret of
their belief that such a mode of treading out the
grain might serve very well for a day’s pastime for
themselves, but was little calculated to forward the
harvest work I had in view. I followed my wonted
course on such occasions, volunteering no explana-
tions, but waiting, with unperturbed countenance,
till the result of my plans should show who had the
best right to laugh.

The pigeons soon found out what we were after,
nor were the poultry much behind them in making
their way to the thrashing-floor; but I thought we
could spare them all they would take. Not so my
wife, however, who, much as she valued her poultry,
thought still more of the indispensable means for
our wheaten bread, and effectually interfered to dis-
perse the intruders. It was not so easy to restrain
the animals by whose assistance we were at work;
THE BOYS’ ADVENTURES. 313

but I reminded my family, as they commented with
some little irony on my excellent plan, on seeing the
buffalo stretching out his long tongue and gathering
a huge bundle of grain for a single mouthful, that it
would be easy to restrain this did I think it right;
but one of the earliest lessons of Divine benevolence,
in relation to the brute creation, is given us in the
Old Testament command, which shows the antiquity
of the very method of thrashing adopted by us:
‘Thou shalt not muzzle the ox that treadeth out the
corn!” This remark had more effect than the most
logical arguments in reconciling my wife of the plan,
and its good practical results soon put my mirthful
scoffers to silence.

The next process by which we winnowed the
grain, and separated it from the chaff and straw,
was more laborious and much less agreeable to the
boys; but, by adopting the simple old practice of
throwing up the thrashed grain with our shovels at
morning and evening while the land or sea breeze
blew strong, the chaff was soon separated from the
grain, and nothing remained but some of the heavier
heads, which were too weighty to be blown away.

When our work was completed, we measured the
total produce, and found a most abundant return for
our labours. The maize we subjected to a different
process. After leaving it to dry in the sun, we
detached the grain by striking it with leathern
thongs, by which means we avoided the necessity of
winnowing, and preserved the pliant soft leaves,
314 THE KAJACK.

which my wife proposed to use in stuffing our
beds.

On visiting our fields soon after our rich stores of
grain had been prepared and housed, we were sur-
prised to find them covered with innumerable flocks
of quails and other birds, of which we failed not to
secure a few. We learned afterwards to look for
them in sueceeding years, so that it might be con-
sidered as the second harvest which we reaped from
our fields. Our harvest work was scarcely finished,
when the herring once more made their appearance
in Safety Bay. We were now much less dependent
on them than formerly, but we caught a sufficient
number to salt a caskful, and prepared a larger
quantity smoked and dried, as they supplied a plea-
sant change in our winter stores. We attached more
importance to the white fish which succeeded to
them, and especially to the sea-dogs, from which we
procured the skins of which our isinglass was chiefly
made, and the small bladders, which we applied to a
variety of purposes.

CHAPTER XLI.
THE KAJACK,

We now, for the first time, found leisure to com-
plete, and make trial of the kajack, which had so
effectually answered its original purpose of keeping
THE KAJACK. 315

the boys in employment during the winter. It was
now resolved to inaugurate it with all triumph, and
Fritz being nominated as commander of our marine
courser, was duly installed into his office, and seated,
with much formality, in the kajack, armed with a
harpoon for his trident, and‘ furnished with a com-
plete array of offensive and defensive weapons and
ammunition, suited alike for warfare by land or sea.
Ernest and Jack: marched in front, dragging the
canoe by cords, while Francis followed, pushing with
all his might behind. The light canoe moved easily
and gracefully under their united efforts, and while
Fritz sang a song of triumph, his brothers kept
time with him on conch shells, which they had
selected as the most appropriate musical instruments
for the occasion.

I heartily enjoyed the mirthful and comic spec-
tacle, but my good wife, with all the tender anxieties
of a mother, regarded our proceedings with a sense
of apprehension, which was only too visible in her
countenance. I strove to convince her of the im-
possibility of danger in the light and buoyant
shallop; and the more to reassure her, I untied my
old canoe, and prepared to set out in pursuit of
the young adventurer on the slightest appearance of
danger.

The three boys guided the light kajack to the
bank of the river, where it descended, by a gentle
slope, into the water, and launching it with all their
force down the bank, they set up a shout of triumph
316 THE KAJACK.

as it slid gracefully into the sea; and Fritz retaining
his seat, and skilfully preserving his balance, now
plied his oars, and glided gracefully and swiftly over
the water. The bay was perfectly calm, and Fritz,
feeling himself completely master of the light kajack,
moved it about in a series of skilful evolutions, to
our great admiration and delight. Sometimes he
darted off in a straight line, then he would turn
about rapidly, shoot in towards the shore, and dash-
ing the water into the air with his oars, would be
lost for a moment in the spray, to the manifest
terror of his mother.

We hailed the successive feats of the young boat-
man with shouts of applause, and our expressions of
admiration at length so excited him, that he became
lost to all fear, and he resolved to attempt the ascent
of the Jackall River, which descended in a rapid of
great force. By the constant use of his oars he was
able to ascend some way, but latterly his utmost
efforts seemed only able to prevent his being vio-
lently borne back in the rush of waters. Tis
strength seemed at length completely exhausted, and
losing his presence of mind, he attempted to turn the
kajack, In an instant it was swept down by the
stream, and dashing out into the bay, disappeared
from our sight. I rushed to the canoe, and jumped
in, followed by Jack and Ernest, while Francis
stayed with his mother, who felt as if all her worst
fears were realized. We set off at our utmost speed,
plying both the wheels and oars; but a series of high
THE KAJACK, 317

rocks intercepted our view, and by the time we
reached the open sea, where the current of the river
mingled with its waters, we looked in vain on every
hand for the kajack, and I dreaded the worst for my
poor boy. We rowed for some time about the bay,
looking eagerly in every direction, with the keenest
sense of anxiety and alarm, and none of us venturing
to give expression to our fears. Suddenly I saw a
light cloud of smoke rise into the air, followed by the
distant report of a pistol.

“There is Fritz!” I exclaimed. ‘ He is safe.”
“Where? where?” exclaimed the boys, eagerly
looking in the direction I had pointed to, and af the
same instant a second light column of smoke rose
from behind a low rock in the bay. I fired off a
pistol immediately as a signal to him, and to this
he replied in the same manner. We immediately
directed our course towards the rock, and after a pull
of about a quarter of an hour we came in sight of
Fritz, and joyfully hailed the young adventurer. We
found him composedly resting on the rock, with a
large morse or sea-cow, which he had struck with his
harpoon, lying dead beside him. I reproved him for
his thoughtless rashness, which had occasioned us
all so much anxiety. He excused himself, however,
by pleading the force of the current, which, before
he could fully recover the use of his oars, had
carried him far out from the land. When in the
vicinity of the small island where we found him, :
herd of sea-cows passed him, and he could not, he
318 THE KAJACK.

said, resist the temptation of darting his harpoon at
one of them. The monster immediately dived, but
the traces of blood showed that he had been severely
wounded, and the bladder, which was fastened by a
long cord to the harpoon, served to point out the
course it had taken. This tended directly towards
the small island on which it stranded, and the pistol
shot which had attracted my attention was fired by
him at the head of the monster.

T told Fritz that he had performed a sufficiently
heroic and gallant feat, but I feared that his prize
was not worth the danger he had incurred, as the
morse frequently attacks its assailants with great
fury; and had it assailed his light kajack with its
formidable tusks, his escape would have been impos-
sible. The ivory, I told him, was the only thing for
which this animal is ever prized; but Fritz, like
other heroes, was inclined to think the glory of the
prize enough, and he declared his resolution of
affixing the morse’s head to the front of his kajack,
and giving to his boat the name of The Morse.
Ernest meanwhile applied to me to inform him if the
morse is not a native of the northern seas, in which
case he was at a loss to account for its presence in so
warm a latitude. I told him, however, that not only
were these inhabitants of the northern and southern
polar regions frequently driven far beyond their
usual localities by storms, but also that there is a
species of the eetacea, which I thought it possible this
might be, commonly found in the neiglibourhood of
THE KAJACK. 319

the Cape of Good Hope, and known by the name of
the Dugong.

While this conversation was carried on, we had
been busy with Fritz’s prize, and having stripped it
of whatever was worth taking with us, we prepared
to depart. Fritz now told me of several things he
had to crave from me as still requisite for the com-
plete equipment of his boat. He desired to have
one of the compasses fixed in it, that he might be able
to guide himself back in case of being at any time
driven off the coast by a sudden gale; and he also
desired to be provided with a lance and hatchet, so
as to be prepared, in every emergency, either for
attack or defence. The requests appeared sufficiently
reasonable and judicious to be agreed to at once, and
I promised to furnish him with the desired equip-
ments.

Having accomplished the object we had in view, I
wished to take Fritz into our canoe, but he preferred
returning in his own light kajack, and told me that
he would perform the duties of marine courier, and
announce to his mother our approach. He accordingly
set off, leaving us to follow at the best speed we could
muster.
320 THE STORM.

CHAPTER XLII.
THE STORM.

Berore we left the island I had observed an unusual
appearance in the sky, and we were not long gone
from it on our homeward voyage when a violent
storm burst over us, accompanied with torrents of
rain. The sky became completely overcast, the
wind blew a perfect hurricane, and the lightning
seemed to flash across our course. Fritz was already
far beyond recall, and I strongly repented of having
allowed him to quit us. I directed the boys to put
on their swimming dresses, which they had with
them, and we secured ourselves to the boat, so as to
escape being washed overboard by the violence of the
waves. We commended ourselves devoutly to the
protection of God; and as it was no longer possible
to direct the course of our little vessel, we were
compelled to abandon it to the influence of the winds
and waves, watching, in alternate hope and fear,
every change in the violent gusts of the tempest.
The storm continued to increase in violence, the
waves rose in mountains, tossing about our slight
bark as if it would pitch it heavenward, and swallow
it the next moment in its gulfs. One waterspout
succeeded another, as if the sea had been dashed up
to the sky and thrown back again on our heads. The
storm, however, proved to be one of those violent
THE STORM. 321

hurricanes chiefly felt in tropical latitudes, and which
speedily exhaust their fury. Our light canoe had
stood out the storm bravely, dancing like a cork on
the top of the waves, and yielding to the violence of
the sea and wind, which would have broken a larger
and heavier boat.

My heart was filled with gratitude when I saw
that the violence of the hurricane was passed, and
the boys now united with mein thanksgiving to God
for so great a deliverance. But now that I had
leisure to look about me, my heart gave way once
more when I thought of Fritz and his frail kajack ;
but I felt that the same Providence that had watched
over us was fully able to rescue him also, and I could
only pray the Almighty to enable me to trust in his
goodness and be resigned to his will. Fortunately
we were still within sight of Safety Bay, and as soon
as the subsiding waves admitted of our exertions, we
plied both the wheels and oars, and made, with as
much speed as possible, for the land. When we once
more entered the harbour, the first objects which met.
our eyes were my poor wife, with Fritz and Francis
kneeling beside her on the beach, where they had
continued throughout the storm, praying for our
safety, and thanking God for the deliverance of our
boy.

Our reception at landing may readily be conceived,
and such was the delight of my dear wife at having
us all once more safely beside her, that she did not
give way to a murmuring word, or a reproachful
322 THE STORM.

reflection on our exposure of ourselves to the element
which she held in so much dread.

After we had changed our clothes and taken soine
refreshment, we drew the canoe safely ashore, and
carried off the kajack with us, along with its contents,
in order to have the morse’s head prepared and fixed
to its prow.

The rain had fallen so abundantly, and with such
violence, that the river had overflowed its banks and
done considerable damage. Some of the embank-
ments we had constructed along its margin had been
swept away, and required our immediate attention
for their repair. Our garden also had received some
injury, and we found that this sudden tempest had
provided us with considerable work for the present,
as well as suggested more for the future.

While we were thus engaged in our peaceful round
of domestic occupations, and continued our abode at

?ock House, the internal completeness and conveni-
ence of which had more and more attached us to it,
I was awoke one night by a terrible barking, howl-
ing, and shrill squeaking, as if all the jackalls,
hyenas, and other wild savages of the country, had
united to invade our domains. J rose in great alarm,
and seizing my gun, rushed to the door, which had
been left open for greater coolness and the admission
of fresh air. It was a clear moonlight night. Fritz
had started up at the same time, and I found him
already half dressed and armed. We both ran out
together, and my mind was relieved of no slight
THE STORM. 823

apprehension on finding that the whole cause of this
untimely disturbance had originated in the intrusion
of some of the poor pigs into our neighbourhood,
three of which had been seized by the ears by our
dogs, and were now testifying, in the most unequi-
vocal terms, their dislike to such forcible detention.
I tried to call off the dogs, but in vain, and we had
both to go forward and interfere between them before
we could procure the release of the former.

I ascribed this invasion at the time to our having
neglected to remove the planks of the bridge; but
on examining it I found I was mistaken in my sup-
position, and it became obvious that the intruders
had found their way across by means of the beams
on which the planks were usually laid. This dis-
covery served to show me how imperfect a defence
our present bridge was, and determined me on the
immediate construction of one which would prove
a more effectual barrier against invasion. I had
frequently revolved in my mind the substitution of
a drawbridge for our first structure, and I now de-
cided that it should be no longer delayed. It was,
however, an easier thing to resolve than to execute
the projected improvement; yet, after having sur-
mounted so many difficulties, I saw no reason to
apprehend that the present one would prove insur-
mountable.

I was well aware of the numerous improvements
in drawbridges, and especially of the revolving
bridges which I had seen in use in the great dock-

80) 21
B24 EXPEDITION TO THE SAVANNAH,

yards of France. Something much simpler, however,
vas amply sufficient for our purpose; and having
constructed two uprights of great strength, with
pulleys attached to them, through which ropes could
be passed, and placed two others on the top of these,
suspended midway, so as to act as levers, we had
little difficulty in making the beams on our own side
of the river move on pins passed through them as on
ahinge. The other ends we cut through obliquely,
so that they would still rest firmly when down, on
the pieces secured on the opposite side; and having
firmly fastened all the planks which had hitherto
been leic loose, we had an excellent drawbridge,
which could be pulled up at all times when not in
use, and thus place the river as a barrier between us
aud any invaders. Its novelty was a source of great
delight to the boys, and for some days the pulling
up and down of it formed one of their chief pastimes,
and the principal object of their thoughts.

CHAPTER XLII.

EXPEDITION TO THE SAVANNAH.

Tuer novelty of our new drawbridge, like that of every-
thing else, was of brief duration. It had been climbed
at first for its own sake; it was now mounted chiefly
in order to obtain a view over the grounds lying be-
youd the river towards Falcon’s Nest, and to watch the
EXPEDITION TO TIE SAVANNAH, 325

herds of antelopes and gazelles which occasionally
strayed in-the neighbourhood of our settlement.
Sometimes they would approach singly, and at other
times in large numbers, browsing over the neigh-
bouring prairie, or gambolling about in fearless
sportiveness; but on the slightest noise or the
appearance of any of us attempting to approach them,
they vanished almost as if by magic.

I discovered, from various allusions, that the boys
were already meditating some new excursion, but te
this I conceived no reasonable objection could be
offered, as the season was suitable; and an occasional
change of occupation was advantageous to all of us.
J accordingly expressed my approbation of the pro-
ject so soon as it was made known to me.

Fritz ran off to his mother, who was at work in her
garden, and begged of her to give him some bears’
flesh, as he proposed to make pemmican. “ Very
good, my dear boy,” replied she, “but I must first
beg of you to tell me what pemmican is?’ To this
he replied by informing her that it is a highly
esteemed preparation among the North Americans,
and is an especial favourite among the fur-traders of
Canada, when they go off on their trading excursions
among the Red Indians. It consists of bears’ or
goats’ flesh beat up into a sort of paste, which forms
a most substantial nourishment, so that a very small
portion suffices for a meal, and it is thus the most
convenient food for travelling. ‘And why,” said
his mother, “do you desire such food at present. J
326 EXPEDITION TO THE SAVANNAUL

cannot imagine it can be so very palatable.” Fritz
was at length obliged to explain to his mother that
he had another excursion in view. Her recent expe-
rience had not tended to increase her admiration of
such expeditions; but after some little reasoning and
coaxing, the boy gained his point, and returned with
the needful supply of bears’ flesh. This the boys
set to work to prepare into pemmican. It was crushed
and then pounded, and passed through various com-
pressive processes, until it was reduced to less than
half the original bulk, and entirely satisfied the young
travellers. I tasted a piece of it to satisfy Fritz, and
found it by no means unpalatable.

These were not the only preparations that showed
something unusual was in view. Tlampers, sacks,
small wicker-work cages, and a variety of other
atensils, were got ready. The old sledge was’ next
brought out and mounted on cannon wheels. A tent
also was taken, and Fritz’s kajack was placed on the:
sledge, along with an abundant supply of ammunition
and provisions.

At length all these great preparations were com-
pleted, and the morning of departure arrived. On
getting up to see them set out, I observed that Jack
carried off, very mysteriously, several of our European
pigeons, which he had secured in the small wicker
baskets I had before observed. My wife had declined
to join in any expedition, preferring to remain at
home. Ernest, who had been engaged in close con-
verse with his brothers for some time, also intimated
EXPEDITION TO THE SAVANNAII. 227

his intention of remaining behind, and I resolved
accordingly to take no part in the expedition, but to
employ the time in constructing some apparatus for
crushing and compressing the sugar-cane, in order
to obtain the sugar in some more manageable form
than we had heretofore been able to do; a thing
which my wife had long desired.

All the preparations of our travellers were mean-
while completed, and a hearty repast partaken of,
during which I availed myself of a favourable oppor-
tunity for giving them such good counsel as I thought
most suited to their present movements, but to which
they gave just about as much attention as the counsel
and advice of experience usually receives from the
young. Soon after they passed us in rapid motion,
Fritz and Francis mounted on the buffalo and onagra,
and Jack on his ostrich. We watched them till they
crossed the bridge and disappeared beyond the wood
that lay inland from Falcon’s Nest.

I lost no time in setting about my sugar mannfac-
tory. I constructed three vertical cylinders, between
which the sugar-canes could be crushed, and to which
T adapted some of the wheels originally designed for
the intended sugar-work at the new colony for which
our ship was bound. This could be set agoing by
harnessing one of our bullocks to it, so that much
personal labour was thereby spared, and we soon had
completed so efficient an apparatus that we had no
doubt of speedily seeing our good cook and house-
keeper preparing for us the most delicate confections
828 EXPEDITION TO THE SAVANNAIL

and swects that the luxurious tastes of civilized
Europeans delight in.

While Ernest and I were finding abundant and
agreeable occupation in thus taxing our ingenuity for
the general good, and occasionally soliciting the ad-
vice or assistance of my dear wife, who was watching
our proceedings with lively interest, our three young
adventurers were pursuing their route towards the
Savannah, and experiencing sundry novel adventures,
which they failed not to recount to us on their return.
After passing the bridge, they pursued their route
rapidly towards the lodging to which we had given
the name of the Hermitage, intending to rest during
the heat of the day at our old farm house. As they
drew near, they heard, to their great surprise, sounds
resembling the laughter of the human voice, though
of a wild and demoniac character, and mingled with
alow barking whine. The animals stopped abruptly.
The bull and the onagra turned away their heads
with every symptom of fear, and even the dogs seemed
to recognise something mysterious and frightful in the
sound. As for the ostrich, it fairly wheeled about,
and set off in the direction of the Lake of Swans,
notwithstanding all the efforts of its master to prevent
it. The wild laugh was renewed from time to time,
and struck such terror into the buffalo and onagra,
that Fritz and Francis were obliged to dismount and
hold them.

“It is something unusual,” said Fritz, “the ani-
mals are as agitated as if'a lion or a tiger were in
EXPEDITION TO THE SAVANNAH. 329

sight.” He accordingly took hold of both the animals,
and directed Francis to advance cautiously, and try
if he could ascertain what the beast was, bidding him
return instantly, so that they might either concert a
plan of attack, or mount and escape at their utmost
speed, if it was an enemy too dangerous to be assailed.

Francis seized his arms, arranged his pistols con-
veniently in his belt, looked to the priming of his
gun, and then patting the dogs and encouraging them
by his voice, he cautiously approached the spot from
whence the strange sounds appeared to issue. He
had only advanced some twenty paces, creeping
stealthily on his hands and knees, when he saw an
enormous hyena, which had slain one of our sheep,
and was now devouring its prey, while every now
and then it uttered the strange and hideous sounds of
laughter which had alarmed the boys. The approach
of the young hunter did not disturb the savage beast.
As the branches rustled on his putting them aside,
it glared in the direction with its flaming eyes, but
did not move from its prey. The bold little hunter,
nothing daunted by the sight, did not wait to summon
his brother to his aid, but taking up a commanding
position behind a tree, he took deliberate aim with
his gun, and fired, first the one barrel and then the
other, and was so fortunate as to wound it in the
breast and break one of its fore-legs. The dogs now
rushed in, and though the hyena was so much dis-
abled, it defended itsclf fiercely, and a terrible combat
“ensued.
330 ‘EXPEDITION TO THE SAVANNAH.

So soon as Fritz heard the first shot, he lost not a
moment in securing the onagra and buffalo to a tree,
and hastened to his brother’s assistance. Before he
arrived, however, the dogs were in close combat, so
that they durst not venture to fire for fear of wounding
them. The hyena, however, was too much disabled
to be a match for our two powerful dogs, and ina
very short time Bran had. seized it by the throat,
while Tray held it by the muzzle, and they were able
to rush in and put an end to the combat. The boys
uttered a shout of triumph, and now proceeded to
examine their faithful dogs, who had not escaped
from the fight without some severe wounds. They
were engaged in dressing these when Jack returned,
having at length, with great difficulty, succeeded in
turning back his ostrich. The generous boy was
not the less frank and hearty in testifying his ad-
miration at the courageous conduct of his brothers,
though he had been prevented from sharing in the
attack.

The three adventurers now set off to the Hermit-
age, and after having established their tent there,
and made arrangements for encamping, they returned
with the sledge and brought off their prize, the skin-
ning and preparing the striped hide of which was
not completed that day.

While our young wanderers were thus employed,
we were seated at home, in the evening, after a day
laboriously and industriously spent, conversing to-
gether at the entrance of our comfortable and well
EXPEDITION TO THE SAVANNAH, 331

furnished grotto at Rock House. Our conversation
naturally turned on the absent members of the family ;
and while my wife and I were wondering and guess-
ing as to what they might then be doing, Ernest
surprised us by saying, “I think it will not be long
before we have news of my brothers.” My wife
asked him what he meant by such an idea, whilst I
observed to her that I had great confidence in the
judgment and prudence, as well as in the courage, of
Fritz; so that we need not indulge in anxious fears
though their return was delayed. I was surprised
when Ernest replied to this: ‘‘ To-morrow morning,
my dear parents, I hope to be able to communicate
to you the news of where they are, and what they
are about.” “ Truly!” said I, somewhat ironically,
‘‘do you propose to set out on a visit to them, and
be your own carrier in bringing back the news?”
Ernest replied by some enigmatic allusions, in the
same tone as I had assumed; while his mother, whose
anxiety about her boys was too great to admit of her
indulging in any jesting on the subject, asked him
‘how he could be so thoughtless as to retail such
foolish dreams? “ Not at all,” said Ernest, “I have
no intention of quitting this neighbourhood, and yet
I hope before long to communicate news to you of
the absent travellers.”

While we were thus conversing, a bird alighted
on the dove-cot, and entered. It was already so
dark that we could not discern whether it was one of
our own pigeons, or some strange bird; and as it was
332 TIE PIGEON COURIER.

long past the usual hour for their retiring to rest,
I feared it might be some dangerous intruder, But
Ernest at once interposed. “ Shut up the dove-cot !”
said he, “shut itwp! What would you say if it was
the bearer of letters from New Holland, or a despatch
from Sydney, or Port Jackson?” “ You speak,”
said I, ‘“‘as if these colonies were actually in our
vicinity; I am aware, however, that it is sometimes
pleasant, my dear Ernest, to indulge in such day-
dreams. But let us now to bed, and to-morrow you
can give audience to your New Holland courier, and
tell us the news of the world from which we are shut
out.” Thus saying, I wished him good night, and
we withdrew to our couches to enjoy our well-carned

repose.

CHAPTER XLIY.

THE PIGEON COURIER.

Erxest was early afoot in the morning, and on
quitting my room I cbserved him descending from
the dove-cot. As we sat down to breakfast, he
entered, carrying a large sealed packet in his hand,
like some official letter, and making profound obei-
sance to me, he thus addressed me with grave for-
mality: “The postmaster of the sovereign lord of
tock House, Falcon’s Nest, and the surrounding
territories, presents his most humble respects, and
THE PIGEON COURIER. 338

prays you to pardon delay in the delivery of these
despatches from the Hermitage, and other parts of
your dominions, as the post did not arrive till late
last night.”

Both his mother and I laughed at the gravity
with which he went through his part, naturally sup-
posing the whole to be only a pleasant jest. I
replied, accordingly, in the same vein: “ Well, Mr.
Secretary, and what is the news of which you are
the bearer from our more distant dominions?” To
this Ernest replied by breaking the seal of his des-
patch, and reading aloud :—

“ The Governor-General of Novel Land, to the
Governor of Rock House, Falcon’s Nest, Prospect
Hill, and Canebrake, wishing health and pros-

perity.

“ Most HONOURED AND DEAR GOVERNOR,—

‘We learn with displeasure that a force of three
men, belonging to your colony, has effected an in-
road into our country, to prey upon the product of
the chase, and have already committed much havoc
among the animals of this province. We also learn
that a dangerous and frightful troop of hyenas has
invaded this department, and caused great destruc-
tion to the domestic animals of our colony. We
therefore pray you to repress these disorders, to
recall those hunters and spoilers, to provide against
the further ravages of the hyenas, and to take the
3804 THE PIGEON COURIER.

necessary steps for eradicating and destroying the
other ferocious beasts that infest us.

‘“ Wishing you all health and prosperity.

““ Given at Sydney Cove, this twelfth day of the
eighth month of the fourth year of our colony.
Witness my hand,

“ Putuie Purripson, Governor.”

Ernest stopped to give way to a hearty fit of
laughter, as he saw the half-credulous looks of curi-
osity and anxiety with which we lent an ear to this
extravagant despatch, The sportive boy concluded
his merriment by a fit of capering and dancing, in
the midst of which a small billet fell from his waist-
coat pocket. I reached forward to snatch it up, but
Ernest anticipated me, and as he lifted it, said—
‘These also are despatches from Sydney Cove. I
pray you let me read them to you. They contain,
perhaps, truer and more trustworthy details than
those of Governor Phillipson, which appear to speak
in exaggerated and ungracious terms of the emis-
saries despatched from this colony.” “You speak
in enigmas, Ernest,” said I; “Fritz perhaps gave
you this letter before he set out. Perchance he
had then discovered the traces of a hyena on the
sand.”

“Not at all, my dear papa,” replied Ernest. “It
is indeed a letter from Fritz, sent home to us from
Sydney Cove, as they have styled that part of the
THE PIGEON COURIER. 33

coast. It was a pigeon-messenger that brought it
here last night, and delivered it on my inquiring
for it this morning.” I congratulated the boy on
so happy a thought. ‘“ But let us hear the letter,”
exclaimed his mother, alarmed at the mention of
hyenas, and already picturing to herself all manner
of dangers. I was scarcely less impatient myself,
and Ernest accordingly read aloud the following
letter :-—

“Dear PARENTS, AND MY DEAR Ernest,—

“T write to inform you of our journey, and safe
arrival at the Hermitage. There we found an enor-
mous hyena, which had already devoured two lambs,
and was rending the carcass of a sheep which it had
slain. Francis was the courageous assailant, and
deserves the whole honour of the victory. Our dogs
joined in the: attack with their wonted fidelity and
bravery. We have spent the day in preparing the
skin, which you will find is a beautiful trophy of
vietory. Our pemmican is by no means palatable,
but we are happily independent of it; and being all
safe and sound, unite in sending our best greetings.

“ Your affectionate Son,
“ Frirz.”

This missive was a source of no little satisfaction
both to my wife and me, and we again and again
congratulated Ernest on the happy device by which
a means of communication had been opened between
336 THE PIGEON COURIER,

the wanderers and us. ‘ We shall most probably

have another letter this evening,”’

said Ernest, ‘and
that will give us further information of their expedi-
tion.” Ernest was so full of his novel duties as
postinaster, that he could evidently think of nothing
else all day, and at last his diligent watch was
rewarded by secing a pigeon enter the dove-eot soon
after dinner. We immediately drew up the door,
and ascending by the inside stair, produced a des-
patch, signed by our three boys, which announced,
in the most laconic terms, that they had passed a
pleasant night, had launched their kajack on the
lake, and had captured some black swans. They
concluded by intimating their intention to be at
Prospect Hill on the morrow.

Other missives reached us from time to time, from
which we learned the particulars of the capture of
three young swans, the old ones having proved too
strong and agile. They also captured a beautiful
large species of heron, startled a large tapir, which
greatly puzzled and somewhat alarmed them by its
enormous size; and armed only with bows and arrows,
in the use of which they were growing very expert,
they brought down several of a flock of cranes, and
captured two demoiselles or Numidian cranes, very
graceful birds, and easily domesticated. Fritz, also,
with the help of his eagle, obtained possession of a
bird of paradise, the beautiful plumage of which
greatly delighted him.

They reached Prospect I1ill, and passed a night
THE PIGEON COURIER. 337

there, greatly disturbed by the howling of jackalls,

and surrounded by abundant tokens of the mis-
chievous and destructive work of the monkeys. [rom
thence they set out to the defile, which formed the
termination of our domains; but here the state of
things greatly surprised them, and they forthwith
despatched one of their letter-carriers with a message,
which filled me with no little anxiety. They had
found the palisade once more broken down, and dis-
covered the traces of some gigantic animal, as well
as foot-prints of what they supposed must be wild
horses, so that they begged me to lose no time in
hastening to the spot.

As soon as this despatch was read, I lost not a
moment in getting ready my own arms and accoutre-
ments, and saddling the bull, I set off at its utmost
speed, directing Ernest and my wife to follow. The
boys were surprised and delighted at my prompt
appearance. The devastation, however, to which
they had referred exceeded my worst anticipations.
The sugar-canes had been trampled down, and en-
tirely destroyed. The palisade, which had cost us
so much trouble to erect, was torn up, and lying a
complete wreck. The trees in the neighbourhood
were stripped of their hark, and the leaves in many
places torn off. From these signs, and also the foot-
prints which I observed, I had no doubt but what
we saw had been the work of an elephant, and I also
thought I detected the traces of a hippopotamus.
The day, however, was far spent before I arrived,
338 CONSTRUCTION OF A REDOUDCT.

and we had only time to gather together a sufficient
quantity of dry wood to surround our tent with watch-
fires sufficiently large to secure us against the attack
of wild beasts during the night. We watched the
fires by turns during the night, but nothing occurred
to disturb or alarm us.

Ernest and his mother reached us in time for
dinner on the following day, bringing with them the
waggon and cow and the young ass, along with the
requisites which I had directed them to provide for
an encampment of some duration, and we set to
work on the following day in the construction of a
substantial barrier across the defile, which should
effectually relieve us from further danger or appre-
hension from invasion on this side. The work oc-
crpied us for a considerable time, relieved occa-
sionally by excursions in the kajack, or explorations
into the surrounding districts, in which we were
generally rewarded by some interesting or useful
discovery.

CHAPTER XLIV
CONSTRUCTION OF A REDOULT.

Tlavine formed an effective barrier across the defile,
our next step was to erect a station or fortress which
we could occupy in safety at any time when we
visited this district. Our knowledge of fortification
CONSTRUCTION OF A REDOUBT, 839

was sufficiently limited, but as all we wanted was a
place in which we could safely take up our lodging,
without being exposed to any danger from wild
beasts, this was readily effected.

We selected four large straight trees, which we
cut down, and erecting these firmly in the ground
as foundations for our lodging, we constructed on
the top of these supports a platform of stout bamboo,
which served as the floor of a comfortable hut, roofed
in with the leaves of the Talipot palm. The ascent
to this was by a single beam, notched with the axe
so as to form a convenient ladder, which could be
drawn up at pleasure. We were thus provided with
a pleasant summer lodging, equally safe and con-
venient with that which we erected with so much
labour at Falcon’s Nest. From our windows we
looked on the wide savannah beyond our barrier,
and with the aid of our spy-glass could discern
troops of buffaloes and other wild animals grazing
or coming to drink at the river, which was seen
winding like a silver thread through the plain.

The boys made several new and valuable dis-
coveries in the course of their wanderings. Among
these I was delighted to recognise the cacao-bean,
of which chocolate is made, and the banana, which
forms so important an article of food in various
countries of America, and with a little preparation
forms a very good substitute for bread. The pre-
paration of the cacao was a much more difficult

matter, and one which I feared my ignorance would
(30) 22
3840 CONSTRUCTION OF A REDOUBT.

prevent us from availing ourselves of it, to secure
the delightful refreshment of chocolate. The pro-
fessor, however—as the boys sportively entitled
Ernest—came to our assistance, and detailed from
his reading the process needful for our purpose.
The kernels of the cacao-bean are deprived of the
outer husk by the aid of fire; they are then roasted,
and afterwards pounded in a heated mortar. When
thus prepared, the residue is mixed with an equal
quantity of sugar, and formed into cakes for use.

The virtues of the banana were next discussed,
and the boys began to conceive a higher opinion of
it when I told them that it had been ealled by tra-
vellers, the king of vegetables, and had even been
pronounced by a distinguished naturalist to include
in its nourishing and palatable properties all that is
needful for the food of man. My wife, who was ever
mindful of her garden, no sooner heard the praises of
the banana thus set forth, than she became eager to
have some of the seeds to plant. She also desired
to cultivate the cacao-bean where it would be equally
accessible, but I told her that the banana was best
propagated by slips, and as Ernest assured her that
he believed the cacao-beans would not grow unless
they were put in very speedily after they were
gathered, Fritz proposed to set out the following
morning in his kajack, and bring home the needful
supplies for making these valuable additions to our
garden.

The next day, accordingly, Fritz set sail in his
GONSTRUCTION OF A REDOUDT. 341

light kajack, towing a slight raft which he had
constructed at its stern, so as to enable him to bring
home a larger cargo than his small canoe could
accommodate. We found abundant occupation dur-
ing the day in getting everything ready for our
departure; and towards cvening the kajack of Fritz
made its appearance, with raft behind it loaded to
the water’s edge. In a moment the three boys were
at the waterside, joyously prepared to welcome the
voyager home again, and to unload his valuable
cargo; which seemed as much prized as ever was
the golden spoils of Spain, when Admiral Anson
made a prey of one of their galleons. Jack was also
observed to receive from Fritz a wet sack which he
took from the bottom of the kajack, apparently con-
taining some living animal, and which, from his
manner of taking it from his brother, seemed to have
been expected.

When Fritz had seen all his cargo safely disposed
of, he leaped ashore, holding a magnificent bird with
its feet and wings fastened, and which he presented
to us with much pride as the most remarkable of his
day’s products.

I immediately recognised it as the sultan cock of
Buffon, the most beautiful of all water-fowls. Its
long red legs and brilliant green and violet plumage
greatly delighted us, and my wife especially prized
it as an addition to her poultry-yard, where it became
ere long completely domesticated. When we had
sufficiently adimired this beautiful bird, Fritz re-
3842 CONSTRUCTION OF A REDOUNT.

eounted to us his day’s exeursion. Ife had pro-
ceeded to the mouth of the river, and rowed up it 4
considerable way. In his progress he had passed
through magnificent forests of lofty trees, which
threw a cool and refreshing shade, and had encoun-
tered flocks of wild turkeys, pintadoes, and other
birds, whose rich plumage and singular cries gave
animation and beauty to the scene. He had also.
passed a group of about thirty elephants, feeding
among the trees near the bank of the river, and he
more than once discovered the sleeping tiger, or
jaguar, lying couched on the steeper banks. The
breadth of the river sufficiently secured Fritz from
such enemies on either side, and he observed that
they scarcely seemed to take notice of his presence;
nur did he deem it advisable to arouse them by
making use of his gun, feeling as he did how in-
capable he was of competing with such foes.

After having advanced a considerable way up the
river in this manner, congratulating himself on the
impunity which his mode of approach into this new
and dangerous region afforded him, he turned his
kajack in order to descend, when, what was his
horror to see almost within gunshot, and making
apparently directly for him, an enormous pair of
jaws filled with formidable teeth which seemed glid-
ing towards him on the surface of the water. Poor
Fritz’s presence of mind nearly forsook him at so
unexpected an assailant, and though he continued to

7

ply his oars, and by a sort of instinctive wheel of the


CONSTRUCTION OF A REDOUBT. 3-43

canoe shot dexterously out of the way of his terrific
antagonist, and then continued his course swiftly
down the river, yet be said he could hardly tell how
it had been done, and he had obtained a lesson in
natural history which he had no desire to repeat.

Ernest at once pronounced the horrible monster
to have been an alligator or crocodile, and proceeded
to give his brothers an account of this aquatic giant
lizard, and of its production from an extremely
small egg. The conclusion, meanwhile, which I
arrived at was, that this new region beyond the
defile was oceupied by still fiercer and more dread-
ful animals than I had had any conception of, and
I felt as little satisfaction in the belief that we had
already so effectually fortified the defile as perma-
nently to protect us from their intrusion.

Fritz’s experience in the voyage up the river had
not in any degree intimidated him in the use of his
kajack, and when we were ready to set off homeward
on the following morning, I was in no degree dis-
pleased when he made the proposition of going home
in it round Cape Disappointment. The ease with
which he managed his light canoe gave me the
utmost confidence, and I was glad of the opportunity
of obtaining a little more definite knowledge of the
coast. Both parties accordingly set out, and arrived
at home nearly about the same time. Fritz, indeed,
had a short route and an unencumbered carriage,
compared with us; but while we steadily pursued our
homeward route, various attractions sufficed ta delay
344 CONSTRUCTION OF A REDOUBT,

hin. Among the rocks he recognised a plant
covered with highly scented rose-coloured flowers,
in which my wife was delighted to discover the
caper tree used for pickling. His observations,
however, led to a much more important discovery,
for, on inspecting the branch of a plant he had
brought home, bearing numerous small white flowers,
and leaves somewhat like the myrtle, I had no doubt
of its belonging to the same family as the Chinese
tea-plant.

The latter discovery was a source of general de-
light, nor can it be concealed that, amid all our
contentment and satisfaction with our lot, we still
indulged the idea that we might some day hail a
European ship, and find a new value in the various
stores of skins, furs, cotton, spices, and other articles
of native produce, which were annually accumulating
in our stores. We could not indeed, amid all our
present comforts, look forward to our living and
dying solitary beings, upon an unknown shore,
without some feeling of dissatisfaction which gave
birth to more ardent, though still moderated desires.
We now, however, looked on the newly discovered
tea-plant as a means available for present comfort
still more than for future barter.

Jack, who was mounted on the ostrich, was the
first to reach home; Fritz followed quickly; while
the rest of us found our baggage and stores required
us to proceed at a more deliberate pace. ATl, how-
ever, arrived safely at last, and united in unloading
CONSTRUCTION OF A REDOUPT. 345

the waggon and storing away the various fruits of
our journey, and putting our dwelling once more in
order for occupation. We found, however, after our
brief sojourn in the airy hut we had constructed at
the defile, that, with all the many comforts of Rock
TIouse, it was still open to objections as a summer
residence, and my wife appealed to me if it was right
to desert our beautifully situated dwelling at Faleon’s
Nest, and Icave it to go to ruin? As her remarks
completely coincided with my own ideas on the sub-
ject, I readily promised to comply with her wishes;
and we accordingly set out soon after for Falcon’s
Nest.

I set to work, with the aid of the boys, and soon
put in order the building reared round the trunk
of the tree in which our first winter had been passed.
The staircase and platform were still firm and good,
and over the latter I constructed a pent roof of bark,
and closed in the sides with trellis-work of wrought
bamboos, so that we found it once more a most agree-
able resting-place, while the number of animals, and
the convenient carriages we had at our command,
rendered the stores at Rock House accessible at all
times.

When this work of restoration was finished, an-
other task of a very different nature awaited us.
Fritz had never abandoned his idea of having a fort
reared on Shark Island, as a secure rallying point
under any imminent danger. I put him off from
time to time, but his head was full of the project;
346 GENERAL REVIEW OF THE COLONY.

and as our chief works for the season were com-
pleted, I at length yielded to his importunities,
conceiving that it could do no harm, and would
serve to keep the boys occupied. It proved, how-
ever, no easy task, but at length, after much more
labour than we had any idea of when we commenced,
a broad platform was completed on the highest part
of the island, with ramparts and embrazures; and
on this, after much toil, we at length saw our guns
planted, and a magazine, dwellings, storehouse, and
all other requisites for this new city of refuge finished.
Our last work was the erection of a flag-staff, and
when we had all landed on Shark Island to celebrate
the completion of our fort, the white flag was hoisted
amid the shouts of the boys; nor, with all my sense
of the urgent necessity for economy of our ammuni-
tion, could I resist the contagion, but loading both
our canuons, we fired them, and listened with a feel-
ing of triumph as the echoes prolonged and repeated
the sounds.

CHAPTER XLVI.

GENERAL REVIEW OF THE COLONY,

Ox looking back over the successive chapters and
pages which have unconsciously accumulated under
my hand, I cannot avoid a feeling of dismay in faney-
ing what the reader may think at the growth of this
GENERAL REVIEW OF THE COLONY. 347
humble narrative of domestic life into a bulk more
suited for the details of universal history. To me,
indeed, all the minutize of our daily life were possessed
of interest, and I was never weary of recording them;
but I must remember it is otherwise with those who
may read this narrative, and I shall therefore pass
on more rapidly over the remaining ground.

Ten years passed over our heads, varied only by
incidents and adventures such as those I have already
narrated; and I still write, doubtful if other eyes
will ever be cast on these pages. But it is my chicf
desire, should this journal, which has been a source
of so much pleasure to myself, ever be submitted to
other readers, to show them how great is the good-
ness and mercy of God, and to teach them, by our
experience, how, with the favour and blessing of
the Almighty, others in like circumstances may
bear up cheerfully in the assurance of being provided,
not only with the necessaries, but the comforts of
life, while entirely dependent on their own rescurees.

We had been engaged throughout the period of
our residence on the unknown land, whither we were
so unexpectedly driven, in conquering and taking
possession of its wealth. Our habitations at Falcon’s
Nest and Rock House were pleasant, commodious, and
admirably suited to all the requisites of the favoured
climate and country where our lot was cast. Rock
Ifouse supplied the most excellent and ample accom-
modation for all our winter stores, and abundant
accommodation for our lodgement during the rainy
348 GENERAL REVIEW OF THE COLONY.

season, while Faleon’s Nest had become our habitual
residence during the greater part of the year, in which
we enjoyed the pleasant shelter of its shady environs
and the abundant fruits of the fertile country which
surrounded it. We continued from year to year to
add to its accommodations as convenience or necessity
dictated, so that we had through time abundant. pro-
vision for the housing and feeding of all our flocks,
and herds, and our European and native poultry, with
extensive palisaded enclosures for securing them alike
from wandering or from danger from hostile in-
truders. Our large trees were also tie resort of
great flocks of our pigeons, who made their nests in
the columbaria constructed with calabashes on the
branches, and roosted there throughout the year;
so that while our dove-cot at Rock House remained
abundantly stocked, we were under no apprehension
from the continued increase of this more extensive
colony.

Every year we found our experience of the climate,
and our knowledge of the many natural productions
of the country, increasing, while the completion of
all the great undertakings which had kept our hands
so fully occupied during the early seasons of our
enforced settlement on an unknown and uninhabited
coast, left us with abundant leisure, and required only
a pleasant amount of exertion to preserve our erec-
tions in repair, or to add to them such additional con-
veniences as seemed calculated to increase our com-
fort. Ten years also made an important difference
GENERAL REVIEW OF TIIE COLONY. 349

on my assistants. The youngest of the boys, who,
when we landed, were only a source of care and
anxiety to me, had, by that time, grown up to be
strong and active youths, equally capable of any
amount of exertion or fatigue as myself; and having
acquired nearly all their knowledge and habits of
life in the strange country which my wife and I were
sometimes tempted to contrast with the remembrances
of our native land, their hopes and anticipations were
entirely concentrated in our new possessions.

Thus happiness and contentment reigned through-
out our cheerful colony, and a rich abundance greatly
exceeded our utmost wants. The bees, which had
at first threatened to prove dangerous and trouble-
some neighbours at Falcon’s Nest, had so prospered
under our management, that we had now little other
trouble than to provide additional hives for the
annual swarms; and their great numbers around our
pleasant summer dwelling attracted to it flocks of the
merops, or bee-eater, the inroads of which, on the
increasing numbers of the bees, was rather advan-
tageous, while their presence added to the life and
cheerfulness of the scene, their brilliant plumage
glancing in the sun, and far surpassing in beauty
anything to which we had been accustomed among
the feathered songsters of our native land.

As our works of necessity, dictated by the indis-
pensable requirements of shelter, food, and raiment,
were gradually completed, we continued to add to
our comforts by many embellishments of our differ-
850 GENERAL REVIEW OF THE COLONY.

ent dwellings. Rock House especially received all
the internal improvements we could devise during
our annual occupation of it in the winter season,
and was, besides, greatly increased in comfort and
beauty of appearance by the additions we made to
it during the summer. Under our united labours, the
surrounding ground, which had at first been a sterile
and barren waste, was gradually occupied with ex-
tending plantations, which rendered it as pleasant-in
summer as it was comfortable and efficient for our
winter accommodation. Still further to add to its
beauty and convenience, a covered gallery and veran-
dah was erected along the whole front of the grotto,
supported on stout columns of bamboo, up which the
vine and other climbing plants, and beautiful flower-
ing creepers, were trained; so that it was latterly a
matter of choice with us at all seasons whether we
found it most agreeable to make Rock House or
Falcon’s Nest our abode.

Our various outposts were no less successful and
convenient. Our labours at the Hermitage and
Prospect Hill were at last crowned with abundant
success. Our structure at the defile also fully an-
swered the purpose for which it had been reared
with so much labour, and we found it occasionally a
pleasant change to remove to the station-house we
had erected there, and to make it the centre of various
expeditions into the country beyond, in which the
love of novelty and adventure found abundant grati-
fication.
GENERAL REVIEW OF THE COLONY. 351

Our colonies on Shark and Whale Islands had also
sueceeded beyond our highest hopes. These islands
were now covered with thriving palms, and other
valuable fruits, and occupied by our thriving colonies,
which multiplied there beyond the reach of any
assailants, so that we could at any time command
the most abundant supplies without labour or delay.

Could a stranger have witnessed the desolate beach
on which our first Tent House was reared, and then
returned for the first time after this interval of ten
years, he could not have conceived it possible that
the beautiful garden of fruit-trees, palms, and lux-
uriant tropical plants, extending all the way from
Rock House to Jackall River, occupied the parched
and desert plain on which we had first landed. By
digging in the vicinity of Rock House, we had found
two abundant springs of water, which rose in grace-
ful and refreshing fountains, and were then led in
winding channels amid our plantations, so as to water
the whole, and give it the appearance of a rich and
fertile garden. In the extreme heat of summer the
trees supplied a most grateful and refreshing shelter,
and by means of bamboo tubes we were able to dis-
tribute the water so as to preserve an abundant and
luxurious vegetation where formerly all had been
scorched and burnt up by the heat.

Our European fruit-trees had also thriven most
successfully, and the avenue which we had planted
with so much labour, from Falcon’s Nest to Family
Bridge, was now a luxuriant orchard, under the
352 GENERAL REVIEW OF THE COLONY.

delightful shade of which we could traverse in the
hottest season, from one habitation to the other.

With such conveniences and attractions at both
habitations, and the ready means of transport and
conveyance which the increase of our cattle afforded
us, we no longer regarded the distance between the
two dwellings as any great impediment even to
daily intercourse between them, so that, even when
taking up our permanent summer abode at Falcon’s
Nest, we rode over to our store-house at Rock House
for whatever the daily demands on its abundant
stores required.

Throughout the whole extent of the space be-
tween the two lodgings, the eye was now regaled
with the cocoa-nut and other palms, the bread-fruit
tree, the sugar and cabbage palms, and numerous
other native fruit-trees, mingling with the delicious
products of European orchards, while, in the hottest
season, the comfort of its delightful shelter was in-
creased by the prospect of the sea laving the shore,
ata little distance, with its deep blue waves. The
success of the European fruit-trees was altogether
surprising. We found, however, when they began
to bear, that the burning sun, and the long-con-
tinued drought, was ill-adapted for the tender nurs-
lings of a green-house; but their failure was amply
compensated for by the abundance of native pro-
ductions. Oranges, figs, bananas, dates, guavas,
cocoa-nuts, and many other delicious fruits, appeared
in continuous succession throughout the season, and
GENERAL REVIEW OF THE COLONY. 853

helped to attract whole flocks of birds, which pillaged
our stores as rapidly as they ripened, and were far
too numerous to be bafiled by any attempts we could
make to lessen their depredations by shooting or
snaring the spoilers. There was, however, abundance
for all; and though the flocks of pillagers compelled
us to be on our guard, in order to secure the
desired supplies, we could always, with a little care,
obtain as abundant stores of ripe fruit as it was
possible to consume, or desirable to preserve for the
winter.

It almost seemed as if there was nothing left us
that we could desire, yet many a look had I cast
towards the sea, during these years that had inter-
vened since the shipwreck, in the hope of espying a
distant sail, and once more greeting other human
beings, from whom we had been so long shut out.
The same feeling animated me in continuing to
store up cotton, spices, ostrich-plumes, &e., in the
hope that some day they might prove a source of
wealth to us, and enable us to purchase permission
to return to Europe, or to acquire such additions to
our supplies as might become requisite. Such feel-
ings were little sympathized in by the boys. Fritz,
indeed, was now a hardy, vigorous young man of
twenty-four yeats of age. Ernest and Jack had also
attained to manhood, and Francis was a lively and
active youth of eighteen. They all had fine dis-
positions, and we had the inestimable advantage of
being able to train them up without the risk of any
354 THE CASTAWAY.

contaminating influences of evil companions, or the
temptations of civilized life.

My dear wife Elizabeth, and myself, were already
feeling the symptoms of approaching age; and, with
our own more vivid recollections of the past, it was
impossible to preclude some haunting anticipations
for the future. We felt, if the place of our settle-
ment was to be our final abode, that some one of us
must be destined to be the survivor of all the rest;
and to my mind especially the thought frequently
recurred, with sad forebodings, and made me turn
my thoughts to heaven, and pray to God that he,
who had cared for us amid so many dangers, and
surrounded us with so many mercies, would avert
from any of us so sad a fate as to perish in solitude,
amid scenes which had been the source of so much
comfort and happiness,

CHAPTER XLVII.
THE CASTAWAY,

Wiru the advancing years of the boys, all ideas of
other control or restraint, saving such as naturally
spring from mutual affection and good will, disap-
peared, and my wife and I grew more and more
accustomed to the departure of our sons, either
singly or in parties, on expeditions, in which they
were absent for days together. My wife, indeed,
THE CASTAWAY. 355

never altogether overcame her anxiety, nor was
it possible to avoid some sense of apprehension,
knowing as we did, from our own experience, how
many dangers had frequently to be encountered in
the ordinary events of the chase. On one occasion,
when Fritz had been absent for an unusual length
of time, his kajack appeared at length, to our great
delight, and on his landing he entertained us with
an account of many curious adventures which had
befell him. Bent on exploring the country to the
east, he had coasted along shore far beyond any
part hitherto visited by us, had ascended several
large rivers, and seen many strange animals, the
spoils of some of which gave witness of his success
in assailing them. While, however, Fritz interested
and entertained us all with the narrative of his
expedition, he drew me aside and told me he had a
very important secret to communicate. Attached
to the foot of one of the birds which he had shot was
a piece of linen, on which was written these words
in English, “ Rescue the stranger on the smoking
rock.” Fritz knew enough of English to be able to
understand this, and his heart was now filled with
the most eager anxiety to seek out the stranger who
must thus, like ourselves, have been shipwrecked on
some part of the same uninhabited country. He had
looked about the whole vicinity, however, in vain, and
was at length forced, reluctantly, to return, knowing
how anxious we must all be at his prolonged absence.

This intevesting news Fritz conceived it advisable
(30) 23
356 THE CASTAWAY.

to conceal from all except myself, judging it best
that they should not have their hopes raised by the
anticipation of thus meeting with a companion,
whose place of refuge and abode was still a matter
of the utmost uncertainty. Fritz, however, reasoned,
from various circumstances, and especially from the
freshness of the writing, that the poor castaway
must be somewhere in the vicinity, and he resolved
not to remit his exertions until he had either found
this new companion, or satisfied himself of the utter
hopelessness of the search.

I strongly commended the prudence of Fritz, and
agreed so far to aid the search, in which I already
felt the most lively interest, by setting out on an
exploratory expedition in the pinnace, and coasting
along in the same direction as he had gone, so as to
take a minute view of all the most likely situations
where it seemed probable that a shipwrecked mariner
might be cast away.

It is needless to recount all the varied incidents
and adventures which we fell in with in the course
of this most interesting voyage of discovery. The
chief purpose which we had in view in undertaking
it was known only to Fritz and myself; but we found
sufficient occupation and enjoyment in its execution
to require no other ostensible inducement for prolong-
ing it. Fritz took his kajack with him; and where-
ever our course became uncertain amid the reefs and
shoals of the coast, he was ready to act as our pilot,
and to take soundings, or examine the shoals and
THE CASTAWAY, 357

banks, so as to secure a safe passage for the pinnace.
He also made frequent excursions in the kajack into
the creeks and estuaries which he passed, occasion-
ally taking one of his brothers with him, as the light
portable canoe was now provided with two seats,
providently constructed by him since he was led to
entertain the hope of being able to rescue the solitary
sufferer, shipwrecked like ourselves, on some part of
this desolate, though fertile and healthful shore.

On one occasion, in landing with his brother
Ernest, the two had a very narrow escape from a
jaguar, or tiger, which they killed, but not before
Fritz had. lost his eagle, the courageous bird hav-
ing pounced on the head of the fierce animal, and
thereby effected a diversion in favour of his master,
by which his life was most probably saved, though
at the sacrifice of its own. Other incidents of a
like nature, and some of them not less dangerous,
diversified the expedition, and furnished matter for
conversation, and new lessons of experience, during
this unusually extended expedition into unknown
regions.

We thus moved along the coast, examining it
with curious eyes in every direction, but no-island
appeared on which we could observe any signs cal-
culated to induce the conviction that it was that of
the poor castaway; and I at length persuaded Fritz
to abandon the search, as it was impossible to guess
from how great a distance the albatross might have
flown, or how many obstacles might interfere to pre-
3858 THE CASTAWAY.

vent the attainment of the object he had in view.
Fritz appeared to acquiesce in this opinion, and we
set about arranging for a homeward course on the
morrow; but when I went on deck next morning,
Fritz was already gone, and a brief note in his
handwriting told me that he had set off in his
kajack, bent on a more careful search, before he
abandoned hope, and begging me to lie too in the
neighbourhood till his return.

The protracted absence of Fritz on this second
occasion was a new source of anxiety to his mother,
and I deemed it right to admit her to our confi-
dence, knowing how much dependence could be
reposed on her prudence and good sense. My dear
wife received the news with great calmness and
self-command, yet it was obvious that it excited
many long-forgotten hopes and ideas in her mind,
and she anticipated the success of Fritz with more
confidence and eagerness than I had looked for. In
this, however, she proved to be right. While our
vessel still lay in the vicinity of the place from
whence Fritz had left us, Ernest suddenly called
out, after gazing intently for some time in one
direction, ‘A boat! a boat!” and as my eye fol-
lowed the direction in which he pointed, I dis-
cerned a small canoe approaching, which, on its
drawing nearer, we recognised as the kajack of
Fritz.

Our bold adventurer was still alone, and while
my wife and I both experienced a degree of disap-
THE CASTAWAY. 359

pointment which surprised ourselves, the safe return
of the wanderer, after so long an absence, in no
slight degree compensated for his coming back alone.
All were now busy with their questions as to the
occupation of the absentee, and the adventures that
had befallen him during his wanderings. To these
he returned somewhat vague replies; but drawing
me aside, he whispered, in an eager and joyous tone,
“T have succeeded, dear father! I have found the
poor castaway!” On questioning him, I was still
more surprised to learn that the unfortunate sufferer
was not a sailor, but a woman; and this had induced
Fritz to leave her on her island at a little distance,
while he came to prepare us for so unexpected a
visiter. She was dressed, he said, like a young mid-
shipman; and he had promised not to reveal her sex
to his brothers, as she found it impossible to over-
come her apprehensions at a reunion with so many
strangers after having been alone, aa the poor ship-
wrecked girl had told him, for upwards of three
years. I could not help dwelling, with feelings of
a strangely mixed character, on the thoughts sug-
gested by this information, and on the singular
chances by which two successive wrecks had cast
human beings on this uninhabited coast, and had yet
left them so long in ignorance of the vicinity of each
other.

While I communicated this new information to
my wife, and prepared her for the reception of a
stranger of her own sex, Fritz went below, and
360 THE NEW Si8TER.

presently returned, having changed his dress, and
arranged it with a degree of care and attention to
personal appearance altogether unusual for him.
Fritz was speedily in his kajack, after desiring me
to follow in the pinnace. As he stepped into his
light canoe, he whispered to me, “Do not, dear
father, on any account, communicate my discovery
to my brothers. I long to see the surprise with
which they will receive us when J return to intro-
duce to them their new sister.”

CHAPTER XLVIIL

THE NEW SISTER.

Frirz jumped lightly into his kajack, and piloted
us through the reefs and shoals that rendered the
coast so difficult and dangerous to navigate. After
we had sailed for about an hour under a favourable
breeze, our pilot turned off towards a small wooded
island, on which he landed. I immediately stood in
with the frigate towards the island; and carefully
sounding, as we approached the shore, I found a
place where we had sufficient depth of water to
admit of our lying in close to the land. In a short
time our sails were hauled down, and we all hastened
on shore, following in the direction which Fritz had
been seen to take. The whole party were now alive
to the fact that some unusual discovery was antici-
THE NEW SISTER. 361

pated, though my wife alone shared with me the
secret of Fritz, We soon came upon a trodden path-
way which led into a pleasant wood, and presently
found ourselves approaching a small hut, roofed with
plantain leaves, and with a fire burning in front of it,
from which a considerable column of smoke ascended.
As we drew near, the astonishment of the boys may
be guessed, when Fritz emerged from the hut, lead-
ing, by the hand, a young and handsome-looking
sailor, whose shy and timid air, and modest downcast
eyes, strangely belied the masculine costume.

The feeling of surprise, however, was not confined
to the boys. For ten years we had looked upon no
stranger’s face, nor heard the voice of another human
being save those of our own little circle; and we
seemed now to have lost the power of language, as if
our long solitude had struck usdumb. The awkward
silence was broken by Fritz, who led the stranger to
his mother, and introducing her under the name of
Edward Montrose, hoped that we would all find a
friend, a son, and a brother, in the stranger whom he
had discovered in this wild solitude.

I hastened to take the timid girl by the hand, and
assure her, in the most kind and winning tones I
could assume, of the pleasure we all felt in such an
addition to our family circle. On my wife approach-
ing, with one of her kindest and most winning smiles,
the poor girl forgot her masculine disguise, and fling-
ing herself into her arms, burst into a flood of tears.
The boys were no less ready to give expression to
362 THE NEW SISTER.

their joy at so unexpected a discovery, and to assure
the stranger of a hearty welcome. It was only now,
hewever, that I fully perceived how much our man-
ners had been affected by our long isolation, and it
was obvious that the timid stranger shrunk from the
well-meant but rough and boisterous attempts which
my sons made to show their kindly feelings towards
our guest. It could not be expected, however, that
youths who had been engaged for the last ten years
in rude toil, or the excitement and danger of the
chase, could suddenly exhibit the polish of cultivated
society, or resume the courtesy of manners which
they had been accustomed to in Europe. Fritz, how-
ever, did his utmost to reassure her; and, while
addressing her in the kindest and most soothing tones
he could command, he forgot everything but the
direct object of the moment, and addressed this
adopted brother by the name of Jane.

The secret would no longer keep, and the reader
must picture to himself the blushing and smiling,
and the half-happy half-awkward looks of the boys,
on trying to moderate the expressions of their joy so
as to render them better suited to the gentler sex of
the stranger. We now returned together to the pin-
nace, and Jane was left to my good wife’s care in the
cabin, while we remained on deck to hear from Fritz
an account of the excursion which had ended so
successfully, As for the boys, their delight seemed
to increase rather than diminish, and they all declared
the arrival of their new sister the happiest change
THE NEW SISTER. 363

that they conceived it possible could occur to add to
their enjoyment. This delight, however, seemed to
give way to embarrassment and awkwardness when
the fair. girl reappeared on the deck, and the name of
sister was pronounced with a degree of timidity and
reserve which was calculated tointimidate the stranger.
With Fritz, however, she seemed already entirely at
her ease, and approached him, holding out both her
hands with a winning frankness which it was alto-
gether delightful to see.

The account which Fritz gave us of his expedition
was listened to with the most eager interest, but it is
unnecessary to burden the reader with details which
had so many attractions for us. Suffice it that, after
three days’ coasting about in various directions, and
making more than one providential escape from immi-
nent danger, on the fourth day his eye was attracted
by a thin column of white smoke, which rose from
among the trees, on an island at a little distance. He
was filled with the most lively transports of joy at
the discovery, feeling certain that his long and weary
search was at last to be crowned with success. His
reception by the stranger, whom he had long been in
search of, was as frank as if she had been equally
long expecting his arrival. The young stranger was
a native of England, and Fritz’s knowledge of the
language was not so great as to enable him to speak
very fluently ; so that she had at first some difficulty
in comprehending him, and from her long solitude
was almost surprised at the sound of a human voice.
364 THE NEW SISTER. -

They were not long, however, of coming to a mutual
understanding, and Fritz was led to the little hut,
where Jane was not long of preparing an excellent
supper for both. They spent the night on the island
—Jane sleeping in a couch she had prepared for
herself on the branches of a tree, where she usually
passed the night, so as to be beyond the reach of wild
beasts; and Fritz making his bed in the kajack, so
as to be equally safe from danger.

They met again on the following morning, and
Fritz found, on reaching the hut, that Jane had
already prepared breakfast for both, consisting of
broiled fish and fruits.

The remainder of Fritz’s narrative was sufficiently
simple. He had told his fair companion of his father
and mother and his brothers, had described to her the
grotto of Rock House, the summer dwelling of Fal-
con’s Nest, and all the other pleasant attractions of
their home, and invited her to share it with us, assur-
ing her of the kind and hearty welcome that awaited
her at our hands; and which our own conduct had
now sufficed in some degree to confirm.

When at length the account was finished, and Fritz
had answered all the questions that curiosity could
suggest, Ernest begged that, as Fritz had now finished
his own story, he would tell us what he knew of the
still more interesting history of their sister Jane.
With this request he was in no degree unwilling to
comply, but it was already late, and I deemed it right
to interfere, advising that all should retire to rest for
"THE NEW SISTER. 365

the night, leaving the history of Jane’s adventures to
entertain us on our homeward voyage on the morrow.
It was with no slight pleasure that we listened to
Fritz’s story on the morrow, with the subject of it
seated in the midst of us. Jane Montrose was the
daughter of a British officer, who had held an impor-
tant command in India, where she was born. She
had the misfortune to lose her mother when she was
only three years of age, and her education was thence-
forth conducted entirely under her father’s eye, who,
in addition to cultivating all the accomplishments
suited to her sex, endeavoured, at the same time, by
training her in many masculine feats, and accustom-
ing her to frequent and hardy exercise, to strengthen
her constitution, and fit her to remain as kis companion
in the colony where his official duties required him to
reside. By this means, before she was seventeen
years of age, she was a good horsewoman, could
handle a fowling-piece, and delighted to join in the
spirit-stirring field-sports of the East. Colonel Mon-
trose being required to return to England with his
regiment, found himself under the painful necessity
of separating from his daughter, as the rules of disci-
pline did not allow of her taking a passage in the
ship in which the troops were embarked. A captain
of another ship, which was about to sail at the same
time to England, was a friend of his own, and he
accordingly entrusted his daughter to his care—
adopting, at the same time, the precaution of pro-
viding her with male attire, and begging her guar-
366 THE NEW SISTER.

dian to let her pass off as a youth while under his
care.

The parting of the old soldier and his daughter, it
may well be conceived, was a painful trial to both;
but they had no choice, and, after many advices and
fond embraces, each of them embarked, and the ves-
sels set sail. The commencement of the voyage was
pleasant and prosperous; but, after pursuing their
route for some time, a violent tempest arose, the
ship was driven off its course, and at length dashed
a complete wreck on our rocky coast. The boats
were got out, and Jane found a place in one of the
smaller ones. But it also was dashed to pieces on a
sunken reef, and Jane was borne by the waves almost
lifeless to the foot of the rock on which I had found
her. Whether any of the companions of her voyage
had escaped death, it was impossible to tell. She
herself had only strength enough left to crawl under
the projecting ledge of a rock beyond the reach of the
waves.

On recovering a little, she was able, when the storm
abated, to obtain some birds’ eggs and shellfish, which
sufficed to allay her hunger; and finding, after the
lapse of some days, that all hope of meeting any of
her companions seemed gone, she set about resolutely
providing for her solitary occupation of her island
home. Fortunately, she had in her pocket a flint, a
knife, and one or two other articles. She was thus
enabled to kindle a fire, which she never afterwards
allowed to go out. The difficulties she had to con-
THE NEW SISTER, 3867

tend with were such as might appal the stoutest
heart; but she never gave way to despondency, nor
ceased to put her trust in the goodness and providen-
tial care of her heavenly Father. Her early educa-
tion had fortunately trained her to a degree of hardi-
hood such as the majority of females in her own rank
are altogether incapable of sustaining. She built a
hut, constructed lances, arrows, snares, &c.; hunted,
fished, and fortunately caught the cormorant, which
not only proved a companion to her in her long and
dreary solitude, but helped to supply her with provi-
sions during the rainy season, when otherwise she
must have starved. She long lived in hope that her
friend the captain, or others of the ship’s crew, must
have escaped, and were perhaps settled on some neigh-
bouring coast, and she continually kept her fire burn-
ing, heaping on it a peculiar species of dried palm
leaf, which emits a thick, white, and somewhat fra-
grant smoke. She also, on various occasions, attached
letters or brief messages to some of the birds caught
in her snares, and one of these it was which attracted
Iritz’s notice, and led to the search which had proved
so fortunate.

As Fritz finished his narrative, his eyes met those
of Jane Montrose, who blushed as she dropped her
long eyelashes, through which a tear glistened and
stole down her cheek. Her embarrassment, however,
was evidently unaccompanied with any painful feel-
ings, though her long seclusion in such utter solitude,
where no sound of human voice ever reached her
368 THE NEW SISTER.

ears, had evidently made her feel the intercourse
with other human beings strange.

We had other things, however, to occupy our atten-
tion. Fritz and Jack acted as our pilots, taking the
kajack, and directing our course when we came among
the shoals and coral reefs, which frequently render
navigation so dangerous in the Indian seas. At length
we came in sight of Safety Bay; and, while we sailed
in the pinnace for Shark Island, Fritz and Ernest
made directly for Rock House in the kajack, so as to
have everything in readiness for a cheerful reception
on our landing.

We were received on landing with shouts of joy,
and Fritz, presenting his hand to Jane, with all the
grace of.a cavalier, led her off by the winding path
through our young plantations to the verandah of the
grotto. On arriving there, we found a table already
spread under its present shelter, and tastefully laid
with the choicest fruits of the country, and some of
my wife’s best preserves. Our delay at Shark Island
had also enabled them to add to these some more
substantial dishes, warm and newly cooked; while
our plate, ostrich cups, and all the most showy dishes
of our own fabrication, were displayed with a degree
of ostentation, which, though it might have amused
an uninterested stranger, was complimented by us
with the most sincere and hearty feelings. As for
Jane, she was delighted with everything she saw;
and, after the privations and sufferings she had endured
during her long solitude, seemed to regard our hospi-
THE NEW SISTER. 369

table dwelling at Rock House as more magnificent
than all the costly displays of oriental wealth and
luxury with which she had formerly been familiar.

The day was such a holiday as we had not enjoyed
before since we landed on the island. Jane took
her seat at the table between my wife and myself.
Everything that our stores could supply most agree-
able or refreshing was produced, and the health of
our adopted daughter was drank by us and by her
new brothers with all the enthusiasm and delight
that true welcome could inspire. The examination
of our dwelling was a source of high gratification
and delight to its new occupant. The hall, the
library, the museum, and the stables, were all suc-
cessively examined. The kitchen, my wife’s own
special domain, was shown by her with peculiar
satisfaction. Nor was the workshop, the dove-cot,
or the garden, forgot. Next day we set off to Fal-
con’s Nest, and before the approach of the rainy sea-
son, Jane had accompanied us to all our favourite
scenes.

Every day’s experience gave us new proofs of the
intelligence and amiable simplicity of Jane’s charac-
ter. My wife found in her a cheerful companion and
kind assistant in all her labours, and we both loved
her as much as it was possible to do had she really
been our own daughter. To our sons she was not
only an object of the warmest affection, but her
presence and influence seemed to produce a complete
change on their character and habits. The roughness
370 CONCLUSION,

which their hunting life had engendered disappeared
in her company, and gave place to the gentleness
and courtesy of their earlier years.

When the rainy season at length set in, the addi-
tion to our social circle was felt with peculiar delight,
and even Ernest forgot his books, in order to listen
to Jane’s conversation, or to aid her in the projects
which her lively fancy suggested for the pleasing
and useful oceupation of her time.

CHAPTER XLIX.
CONCLUSION.

Ir is with feelings of a very varied character that I
sit down to write this concluding chapter. God is
great and abundant in goodness and mercy! such
is the reigning sentiment in my heart. But con-
flicting emotions disturb my thoughts, and the reader
must pardon me if I close this long narrative abruptly
and in haste.

It was drawing towards the close of the rainy sea-
son. Already the clouds were beginning to break
up. Our first attention was directed to our garden
and the plantations in the immediate vicinity of Rock
Tiouse; but as the weather grew more settled we
ventured on more distant excarsions, and Fritz and
Jack had out the kajack, and set off to examine our
fort and colony on Shark Island. Having landed
CONCLUSION. 871

there and found everything in good condition, they
proposed to load and fire the two guns in order to
satisfy themselves that both the powder and the
cannons remained uninjured from the wet. Their
experiment was completely satisfactory; but what
was their surprise, when shortly afterwards they
distinctly heard three reports of cannon in the dis-
tance. They consulted together, perplexed what to
do under the circumstances; but at length the two
decided to hasten home and inform me of this strange
occurrence.

My attention had been naturally attracted by the
report of the guns on Shark Island; but I had heard
nothing else, and on their assuring me that these
had been followed afterwards by three other reports
in the distance, my first assurance was that they had
been deceived by the echo of their own guns. This,
however, was aX opinion not to be thought of, and
what I knew of Fritz’s coolness and experience, left
me no longer any room to doubt the correctness of
their conclusions; yet so strangely constituted is the
human mind, that what had been the object of my
desires and prayers for the last ten years seemed
now an object rather of apprehension and dread, than
of hope. If there is indeed a ship on our coast,
I reasoned with myself, may it not as probably be
that of some Malay pirate, or lawless privateer, as
one manned by friendly Europeans?

Towards evening the rain, which had only par-
tially subsided, once more commenced to fall with

(80) 24
372 CONCLUSION.

increased violence, and for two days we were entirely
confined to the grotto. On the third day, when it
began to clear, Jack and Fritz intimated their in-
tention of returning to Shark Island, and trying, by
their signals, to ascertain if the stranger was still
at hand. To this I agreed, and directed them to get
out the canoe, so that I might accompany them. On
reaching the fort both guns were fired, and it was no
longer possible to doubt the previous account. _The
sound of our guns had scarcely died away in the
distance, when we distinctly heard a louder report in
the direction of Cape Disappointment, followed at
brief intervals by six others. Once more we has-
tened back to the shore, and informing those at home
of what we had heard, we desired them to remain
within the grotto, while Fritz and I proceeded in the
kajack to reconnoitre.

We coasted along, passing one point after another,
without discovering anything, till I began once more
to ask myself if the whole might not be an illusion.
This, however, was an idea it was impossible seriously
to entertain. That we had heard the reports of seven
guns I could no longer doubt, and the period that
had elapsed since the first were heard from Shark
Island made it almost certain that the vessel must
be at anchor somewhere on the coast. Suddenly, on
rounding a headland, we came full in sight of a fine
large European vessel reposing at anchor, and on
directing my glass to it, I had no difficulty in recog-
nising the English colours flying from its masthead.
CONCLUSION. 373

On satisfying myself that the vessel was really a fine
English ship, with its officers on board, I thought it
advisable that we should visit them in better trim,
and accordingly, giving Fritz the signal, we wheeled
about and darted off in a moment. We made as
swiftly as we could for Rock Touse, where our
prudence was highly commended by all but Jane,
who thought we should have boarded and made our-
selves known to her countrymen.

We set to work immediately to get the pinnace.in
order, and put on board a variety of our best fruits
and preserves, and all the most acceptable supplies
we could think of for carrying as a present to the
English ship. Evening, however, had set in before
our various preparations were completed, and we
returned to Rock House for the night. None of us,
however, seemed to feel any inclination to sleep.
My wife and myself were alone calm and self-pos-
sessed. We sat down together and discussed the
use that should be made of this opportunity. But
we both felt that we were growing old, and that all
we needed to render unalloyed the happiness of our
patriarchal mode of life and our abundant possessions,
was the opening up of some communication with
Europe. It was altogether different with the young
people, however; they seemed perfectly intoxicated
with joy and anticipations of some indefinite achieve-
ments of success.

Next morning we set sail in the pinnace, after an
early breakfast. The whole party was on board,
3th CONCLUSION.

and the utmost preparations had been made for
giving the most favourable impression on our first
appearance. As we came in sight of the ship
we fired off a gun, and then hoisted the English
colours.

We were received with all the frank cordiality
for which naval officers are noted, and when we had
recounted, as briefly as possible, the history of our
shipwreck, and our sojourn for eleven years on this
strange coast, I found that the captain not only knew
Sir Edward Montrose, the father of our adopted
child, but that he had undertaken to explore the
islands and coasts in this latitude in the hopes of
learning something of his daughter, and of rescuing
her should she still be alive.

The remainder of my story must be briefly told.
We invited Captain Littleton and his officers to
Rock House, along with Mr. Wolston, an English
passenger, who, with his wife and two daughters, had
left their native country with the view of settling in
one of the British colonies. The latter were so de-
lighted with all they saw at our settlement, that it
was at length agreed they should take up their abode
permanently with us. Mr. Wolston was a wealthy
and skilful engineer, and the abundant stores and
implements he landed promised to be of no slight
advantage tous. As for our adopted daughter Jane,
we felt that we must part with her. She had become
so strongly entwined in our affections that the parting
was a very sad one, but we felt that it was her, duty
CONCLUSION. : 375

togo. My son Fritz also expressed a desire to visit
Europe, and it was at length arranged with Captain
Littleton that Fritz and Jack should proceed to
England along with Jane. We exchanged with the
captain some of the productions of the island for
gunpowder and other useful stores. The remainder,
consisting of ivory, furs, spices, fruits, ostrich feathers,
&e., were carefully packed and put on board as the
fortune of our sons; while we commended them to
the care of the good captain, and also to the kind
services of the father of their adopted sister.

At length the last evening has arrived. I write
this on the eve of the departure of my two sons and
my daughter, as I still fondly call her. I have
sought once more to impress on my sons the principles
of religion, virtue, and probity in which they have
been reared, and to prepare them as much as possible
for once more mingling with the world from which
we have been so long shut out. Once more we have
all knelt together, while I commended my dear
children to the watchful care of their heavenly
Father, and prayed that if it should not -be his will
that we shall meet again in this world, we may all be
enabled so to live, that through faith in our Divine
Redeemer, and his finished work of satisfaction for
our sins, we may all meet at length in that heavenly
kingdom, where there will be neither sorrow, nor
suffering, nor parting more.

We have all passed a nearly sleepless night. As
376 CONCLUSION,

it approaches the hour when we must part with our
dear children, the trial seems greater than we had
conceived of. Ernest and Francis have no desire to
leave us, and already they seem to have formed
a lively attachment for the two daughters whom we
have received in lieu of those of our family that
return to Europe. Soon after dawn the firing of a
cannon announced that the anchor was about to be
lifted, and that the voyagers must hasten on board.
Fritz takes with him this narrative of our shipwreck
and settlement on the desert coast of these once
lonely shores. I have charged him to have it pub-
lished in Europe, being not without the hope that. it
may be useful to others, as furnishing, in some de-
gree, an evidence of the fruits of patience, courage,
perseverance, and of Christian submission to the
Divine will.

The anchor is already weighed, the sails are now
being unfurled that will, in a very few hours, carry
my dear children out of our sight, and part us from
them perhaps for ever. I will not attempt to give
expression to my own feelings, or to describe the
grief of my dear Elizabeth in this trying hour.
Nevertheless, we believe it is for the best, and it may
be that it will yet prove the source of many joys and
comforts to ourselves, as well as contribute to the
advantage of our sons. I add these parting lines
while the ship’s boat is waiting that is to carry
away this manuscript, which has been my occupa-
tion and amusement during so many evenings of
CONCLUSION. 377

the long years passed on this strange coast. I close
it with my last blessing to my sons. May God
Almighty bless them, and keep them. Farewell
my beloved ‘children! Farewell Europe! Fare-
well happy Switzerland! May you be great and
prosperous as in the proudest days of your history
May your inhabitants be ever pious, happy, and
free !



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