« IndietroContinua »
and striding gallantly through the per days, as though clerks, cashiers, public secuting gauntlet.
and private servants had made the virtue This conduct was so extraordinary over to their canine friends, to Have and that, to test him, the meeting was chang. to Hold forever. ed, for a single day, to another house. We lately heard a fresh anecdote on Was our hero to be disconcerted ? By this point, not in the books. A pioneer
In some way, known only settler in Western New York went into to canine intelligence, he discovered the the woods to cut timber. Needing ruse, and, the next Sunday, betook him- another axe, he told his dog to go back self to the new rendezvous. Not long to the house, some two or three miles after his ungodly master was drowned, distant, and bring one. The little fellow when he came no more to meeting started with alacrity, but returned, after This gave one devout brother the key to a long absence, quite dejected, and withhis whole strange conduct. No doubt out the axe. The master upbraided he had come hoping to attract his wicked him sternly, and bade him go again. master to attend the means of grace, but After another still longer absence he rethis purpose having been providentially turned, this time joyfully, and bringing frustrated, his attendance could be of no the axe-helve in his mouth. He had further use.
found it go firmly bedded in a stump, as The attachment of this animal to his afterwards appeared, that he could not master has passed into a proverb, and is wrench it out, and so gnawed off the attested by thousands of pathetic and handle. With such affecting instances tear-compelling anecdotes. That master of a dumb striving after duty, often may be a poor forsaken outcast, without misunderstood, often sharply blamed, a single hold on human sympathy; he one cannot help misapplying Cowper's may have but a scanty crust to divide; words, but wlien was his faithful follower known
“ Oh, that these lips had language ! ” to desert him for happier fortunes ? Though he meet the sleek, pampered A neighbor of ours, who has an enorpets of more prosperous homes every mous watch-dog, relates that whenever day on the street, when was gaunt, fam- the master of the house is absent over ished Fido ever seen forsaking old Robin night, the faithful fellow is accustomed to the Penniless ?
quit his usual sleeping-place, and stretch Bacon says, “ man is the God of the bimself across the threshold of his dog." His master is the Grand Lama of mistress' chamber, as if he would say, his reverence—sovereign and patron " Who enters here must pass over my saint in one. Io him he lives and moves dead body.” and has his being. His smile is his Another magnificent dog, whom we heaven, his frown abases him to the personally knew, we have long wanted lowest depths. Unlike all other animals, to chronicle, for he was one of the magthe displeasure alone of his liege, with nates of our childhood. Napoleon Bonaout fear of punishment, will cause him parte was his imperial name, and he deto slink to his kennel with abject head, served it well. Leave him in charge of eyes askance, and tail dropped ; while a a gate, and neither man, beast, nor gobcaress, an appreciative word, will instant- lin could pass through. Send him to ly bring him to his feet with radiant fuce, fetch the cows, and he went about it pennon at full mast, and his whole body much as a Camanche starts on the warwriggling in a convulsive tremor of joy. path, Never did slow-stepping beast His master is his conscience, and stand- stop to crop the last mouthful of juicy ard of right; every thing belonging to timothy or nectarous clover, when him is sacred, and to be watched over Bony's imperative summons was heard. as the Roman guarded his eagles. Finally, so great a fear of him fell on all
This fidelity to a trust is so character- the herd, that it was only necessary to istic a trait that it would seem, in these stand at the pasture-bars and call
Bony,” to bring the whole lumbering taking off the edge of loneliness, withtrain, pell-mell, to the milking-sheds. out making importunate demands on Now we do not say such Spartan disci- your attention. A child is apt to be pline was salutary, or calculated to pro- exigent and pertinacious in its solicitamote a tranquil flow of milk; but we do tions-a dog, never. Have you not seen say that dog had a sovereign conception him crouched with head between his of the authority of law.
paws, gazing full-eyed at his master, Every inch of his master's domain who is reading or writing, and lost in Bony took under his high protectorate. thought? Don't you see he is ready to It was sacred soil which no alien hoof spring for a frolic if a gesture invite it, might invade. Ilis only fault was, that but, till then, silent as ghosts by dayle could never be made to see that the light? How he puzzles his simple brain public had any rights in the highway as his eye follows those mysterious which a valorous dog was bound to re- hieroglyphics you are tracing, and how spect. He was bent on adding that vi et often you are reminded of little Dora armis to the fainily estate, or for resum- holding the pens for her David Coppering any rash grants which ancestral field! masters might have made. Just as & IIave you a neighbor troubled with Baron of the Rhine kept ward over his such a horrible flux de bouche as makes river-front, so did Bony prowl about that you bless the memory of those old strip of debatable territory; and if any anchorets who never once for years bewildered pig found himself on the broke the leaden silence of their tongues? wrong side of it, he would rush squeal. How good it is to turn the key on him ing past, hugging the farthest fence, even and his magpie chatterings! How it inwhen the bête noir of his fancy happened creases your respect for your dumb comto be quite out of sight.
panion, who, with the keenest relish for And yet, the noble, gigantic fellow a bit of fun, yet, with a true knightly was docile as a child, gentle as a woman courtesy, subdues his desires to your to his friends, never showing a hostile mood, and awaits your invitation. eye unless his notions of trust were con- We are happy to be supported here by cerned. If the Hindu doctrine of trans- Sir Walter Scott. The companionship migration were true, we should say that of his dogs in his study he felt to be no less than a Regulus or a Ximenes grateful society, and helpful to his work. had taken up his abode in the imperial We would give more for a faithful drawform of Bony.
ing of that Edinburgh "den" where the How far one of these dumb favorites Great Wizard conjured his most potent will fill the gap to a solitary person,—the spells, than any painting of “Scott and great emptiness that follows lost human his Friends," illustrious and elegant ties! Have you ever read the pathetic though the company may be. There, history of Eliza Ryves, poet, dramatist, in the foreground, sits the master at his and woman of genius, who died many plain desk, thoughtfully bending over years since in a dreary London garret ? his papers, while the immense form of In poverty and neglect, under hope de- Maida, his shaggy favorite, is stretched ferred, and utter forlornness, how pitiful at length before the fire. Yonder, it is to hear her say, "Now that I live perched on the highest round of the entirely alone, I show Juno more atten- book-ladder, quite out of harm's way, tion than I had used to do formerly. The crouches Hense, the beautiful cat, waitheart wants something to be kind to; and ing to take lier place by the footstool, it consoles us for the loss of society, to whenever it shall please her rival to see even an animal derive happiness saunter forth for a walk. To one or from the endcarments we bestow upon other of these pets Scott is every now it."
and then tossing a friendly or comic You will find the dog a delightful, ejaculation, by way of recess to himself, unhindering companion for the study, and keeping up their spirits till he can
take time for a frolic. He belioved When you remember that the good they understood every word he said, and fellow will have just such a welcome there did seem to be a sort of clairvo- ready for all the household, as they sticyance between them. Who can tell how cessively appear, does he not amply pay much his elastic freshness, power of his board-bill by getting the day underwork, and sweetness of nature, were way so heartily and hilariously, and kept in tone by his unbending himself by oiling the family machinery, which and "leaning from his human
is so apt to creak in the shivery mornthese dumb favorites?
ing hours ? Walter Savage Landor, whose temper Now we know young dogs do not was as uncertain as an Icelandic geyser, enjoy an enviable reputation among foaming up without apparent cause, and housekeepers. They are the embodiscalding whatever came in its way, who ment of Young America, and insist on in leis atrabilarious moods lashed father, having a paw in every thing. Does the mother, wife, and friend alike,--the maid attempt to sweep ? Nick considsavage Landor lived in a state of beau
ers it a challenge to a sword-exercise, tiful and tranquil friendship with his and begins to fence at the broom in the dog. Let us for this repeat a requiescat most valiant manner. Is the mistress over the grave of the gifted, choleric concocting an omelette ? le selects the poet.
supreme moment of tossing, to execute a Next to a merry child, we do not gallopade between her feet. lIe looks know so good and healthful a compan- with great favor on a lady's trained ion for a melancholic man as a dog. IIe skirts as a divan for his after-dinner does not call over the roll of your ails, naps, also a marsupial arrangement, or with dolorous intonation, nursing and parlor coupé for his easy conveyance petting them by recital, nor does he from room to room, He eschews well. anger you by combating your splenetic swept floors and freshly-painted corrifancies. He just ignores them so inno dors, delighting to bedragglo all such cently that you ignore them too. If, fleshly vanities under his feet. If, by after a convivial evening, you awake way of armistice, he be shut out of with a pound of lead in the epigastric the house, he first whines mildly to draw regions, spiders in your eyes, and your attention, thien vociferously to demephitic vapors coiling through your mand admittance, and, if still repulsed, brain; if the day looks cold, and dark, scratches and striates your door most and dreary, and you feel half inclined to alarmingly, till, finally losing all patience, try the “bare bodkin” remedy, rather le comes down with his great catapult than grunt and sweat under a weary of a tail, to let you know lie will “ make life, just draw on your clothes, and open antechamber no longer. the door to your dog. See what a The puppy is of an analytical turn of delirious good-morning he has ready for mind. He seizes cords, tassels, rubbers, you. How he leaps upon you, and slippers, gloves, combs, any thing within sprinkles you all over with cool, fragrant reach as the basis of his investigations, dew, which he has brushed from lilacs and then grinds, macerates and triturates and violet-borders! How his eyes flash, his specimen with patient assiduity, till and his tail wags like an excited pendu- it is reduced to a very elemental condilum, as he winds up his welcome with tion-(there is our little Don yonder, just a series of acrobatic somersaults! finishing the last tooth of a fine rubber
Now if such a greeting as that will comb! May it prick his digestion !) A not flash a vivid beam among the noir clothes-line, with its billowy, fluttering vapeurs of your brain, and make you feel linen spread full to the wind, offers a that life is dear, and a pleasant thing it temptation which no gallant puppy was is to see the sun, you may as well make ever known to resist. IIe evidently your will, and pull your hypochondriac scents the ghost of some beast of prey nightcap over your eyes for all time. in ruffled pillow-case and gossamer
handkerchief, which must be shaken and Napoleon patted his grim cannon at exorcised at all hazards.
Waterloo, and called them pretty girls ; The little fellow has also a way of but what cared he for the deliciæ of answering the door-bell before the maid, household life? What pause did he and pressing his hospitable attentions make amid the roar of his great ambion ladies in full regalia (who have not tions, to listen to the murmur of low, sent in their cards to him), in a manner home harmonies, or to understand their more cordial than pleasant. Can any humor and pathos? All pets, especially one tell us why he has such a passion pet dogs, it was well known be detested. for bringing old bones into the parlor to Let us place it to his credit, then, that gnaw before your company, on the best when poor, unheroic, homesick Maria heartbrug? Is he cleaning specimens for Louisa came to the Tuileries, as she some medical clique, and so pressed that would have gone to Spandau, weeping he must work and visit together, or does abundantly for the lost home, he took he take your guests for a deputation of her by the hand and led her into a the Humane Society, with whom he sweetly familiar room, where she found hopes to make interest by displaying a again the dear tapestries wrought by her Squeers-like diet?
sisters, the furniture of her own boudoir, You cannot please our little philoso. her birds and keepsakes, and, more than pher better than by taking him into the all, where the little white dog she had garden. To be sure, he will unearth hugged at parting with a bursting heart, every thing to bring it to the sun, dig up leaped up in her arms and gave her welsprouting bulbs, escarp your mounds, come! and mine your terraces. He will in- That strange Jewish prejudice against spect every spadeful of earth you turn the whole canine race, that crops out so over, sniffing it like an analytical chem- often in the Bible-record, still lingers in ist, and wagging approval of your work, the Orient. Driven inhospitably from as if he would say, “ how now, comrade, human doors, starved, outlawed, and are we not getting on famously?” You treated with the greatest opprobrium, will probably find small tumuli on your he still retains some marks of the native lawn, which being opened reveal mys- gentleman. It is remarked that in Conterious deposits of organic remains, stantinople, where the capine population worthy the learned researches of the is immense, the dogs have forined a Pickwick Club. Altogether, the young complete municipal code, dividing themdog belongs to the category in which selves into wards whose bounds are very Beecher places boys-creatures that you rigidly defined, and any trespass, or any can neither live with nor without; but violation of canine ordinance, is most he goes about each separate piece of trenchantly punished. An American mischief with such honest audacity, such resident gives this curious account of certainty of its being the fit thing for a what happened when a donkey died bedog to do, that you have not the heart fore his door. to chastise him. Had he the least spice “It was, of course, Thanksgiving-day of craft or sneaking, you could apply the among the dogs in that district. The whip with a will.
entire dog-population dined on donkeyProf. Hedge says the dog is the most such a feast as they had not had for moral of brutes. He reminds us of many a day. When they had finished, what De Quincey calls “the awful inno- the dogs of an adjoining, district came, cence of childhood.” If you are going as if invited, the largest dog of the disto do a mean or a base thing, you will trict-probably the alderman-at their not take him with you; you will shut head, and, following him, "Tray, him up in his kennel and slink off by Blanche, Sweetheart, the little dogs and yourself; for how can you ever do it with all.'No objection, not even a growl those great, honorable, inquiring eyes from any surly cur was heard in protest fastened upon you?
from those to whom the donkey legiti
mately belonged; on the contrary, they seem to possess many qualities of our seemed rejoiced to have such bounty for intellectual, emotional, and even of our their neighbors."
moral nature, they are not accountable No poet has written of our favorite agents. more lovingly than Mrs. Browning. Well, who wants to thrust any thing Fortunate was Flush, the pretty com
so fearful as moral responsibility upon panion of her darkened sick-room, to these creatures, made for our pastime and earn such mention as this:
our use? Nobody can deny that dogs “ Roses gathered for a vase,
are "honest up to their light," and do In that chamber died apace,
their duty, so far as they know it, in a Beam and breeze resigning;
cordial, hearty fashion, which often puts This dog only, waited on,
to the blush the grudging service of the Knowing that when light is gone, Love remains for shining."
superior race. How finely she depicts the tender pain the future life but the giving account of
Are there, then, no employments in which must often come to us, living in
stewardships, and the laying down of household intimacy with creatures allied to us by some of our noblest sentiments, ing tribes who have groaned and tra
trusts? Is it certain that, of all the livyet separated by the impassable limita
vailed under the tyranny of force and tions of an inferior nature.
the bondage of want since the world be“ Mock I thee in wishing weal ?
gan, man alone is to start out on the Tears are in my eyes to feel
new existence? Will he who is made Thou art made so straightly, Blessings needs must straighten, too,
sovereign and lord paramount of this Little canst thou joy or do,
lower world—set to rule as well as to Thou who lovest greatly.
serve-find himself then in the lowest, ab“Yet be blessed to the height
jectest grade of being? Will all the soft, Of all good and all delight Pervious to thy nature!
restful gradations of the earthly state Only lored beyond that line,
have ceased, and all need of brute minWith a love that angwers thine,
istries? Loving fellow-creature ! ”
Or, may it be possible that, among the We have not inquired what theolo- boundless beautiful varieties of the fugians think becomes of the souls of ture state, life may radiate infinitely bebrutes (or their simulacra), when they neath as well as above us, the bounds die. Tupper has lately made a pro- of the household be enlarged rather nouncement, and we wait for light. We than diminished, and the lower orders, will only say that, had we written for whom, we are told, “God careth,” Gates Ajar, we could not have refrained may find enlargement from the woes and from sketching the household dog burdens of their present condition? among the joyful recognitions of the Since the Bible, intelligently rendered, glorified hereafter. Let us say it rever- is silent as to the future of the brute ently, there are many whom we hope creation, we do decline to accept the to meet in the beatified state, whose eminently Jewish conclusion which greeting would not give us half the pure Solomon reaches in his splenetic solilodelight we should feel to welcome the quy—“the spirit of the beast goeth dear Fidus Achates who loved us so downward to the earth.” Where nature well, and wagged us so many hearty and revelation are dumb, let us wait God-bless-you's on these earthly shores. humbly for the hour when all bidden We have read quite an argument things and dark problems shall be
resomewhere to prove that, though brutes vealed.