category:Leisure puzzle


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    The colour of the species now before us, which is a[106] native of India, is a pale gray, the hairs being for the most part of a dirty yellowish white, relieved towards their extremities by narrow rings of brown. The head and limbs are darker than the rest of the body.
    But even in the East, where the qualities of the Chetah appear to be best appreciated, and his faculties to be turned to most account, it would seem that he is not employed in hunting by all classes of the people indiscriminately; but, on the contrary, that he is reserved for the especial amusement and gratification of the nobles and princes of the land, rather than used for purposes of real and general advantage. In this respect, and indeed in many others, as will be seen by the following brief account of the mode in which the chase with the Hunting Leopard is conducted, it bears a close resemblance to the ancient sport of hawking, so prevalent throughout Europe in the days of feudal tyranny, but scarcely practised at the present day except by the more splendid slaves of Asiatic despotism. The animal or animals, for occasionally several of them are employed at the same time, are carried to the field in low chariots, on which they are kept chained and hooded, in order to deprive them of the power and temptation to anticipate the word of command by leaping forth before the appointed time. When they are thus brought within view[67] of a herd of antelopes, which generally consists of five or six females and a male, they are unchained and their hoods are removed, their keepers directing their attention to the prey, which, as they do not hunt by smell, it is necessary that they should have constantly in sight. When this is done, the wily animal does not at once start forwards towards the object of his pursuit, but, seemingly aware that he would have no chance of overtaking an antelope in the fleetness of the race, in which the latter is beyond measure his superior, winds cautiously along the ground, concealing himself as much as possible from sight, and, when he has in this covert manner nearly reached the unsuspecting herd, breaks forth upon them unawares, and after five or six tremendous bounds, which he executes with almost incredible velocity, darts at once upon his terrified victim, strangles him in an instant, and takes his fill of blood. In the meanwhile the keeper quietly approaches the scene of slaughter, caresses the successful animal, and throws to him pieces of meat to amuse him and keep him quiet while he blinds him with the hood and replaces him upon the chariot, to which he is again attached by his chain. But if, as is not unfrequently the case, the herd should have taken the alarm, and the Chetah should prove unsuccessful in his attack, he never attempts to pursue them, but returns to his master with a mortified and dejected air, to be again let slip at a fresh quarry whenever a fit opportunity occurs.


    1.Of all the quadrupeds which inhabit the northern regions of the American continent, the Grizzly Bear is unquestionably the most formidable and the most dreaded. Superior to the rest of his tribe, not excepting even the polar species, in bulk, in power, in agility, and in the ferocity of his disposition, it is not to be wondered at that he should be regarded by the native Indians with an almost superstitious terror, and that some portion of this feeling should have been communicated even to the civilized travellers, who have occasionally met with him in the wild and desolate regions which are subject to his devastations. In the Journals of some of these[124] travellers we find recorded such astonishing instances of his strength, ferocity, and extraordinary tenacity of life as would indeed amaze us, were we not aware how much the human mind is prone, under certain circumstances, to fall into exaggeration, in many cases most certainly unintentional. Making, however, all due allowances for the existence of this very natural feeling, we are bound to acknowledge that there are few animals who can compete with this terrible beast; and that to be made the object of his pursuit is an occurrence well calculated to alarm the stoutest heart, even when provided with the most certain and deadly weapons of human invention, guided by the most experienced eye, and directed by the steadiest hand.
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