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But elephant within his memory hid it;
A week or two elapsed: one market day
Through rows of shops and booths they passed
Till to a gardener's stall they came at last,
“Ha!” thought the elephant, “'tis now my turn To show this method of nut breaking ;
My friend above will like to learn,
Then in his curling trunk he took a heap,
He laid a blow so hard and full,
But with them cracked his skull.
Young folks, whene'er you feel inclined
Bear tit for tat in mind,
To be repaid in kind.
EARLY in 1848, a white-tailed sea eagle was brought to London in a Scotch steamer, cooped up in a crib used for wine bottles, and presenting a most melancholy and forlorn appear
A kind-hearted gentleman, seeing him in this woful plight, took pity on him, purchased him, and took him to Oxford. Here the bird soon regained his natural noble aspect, delighting especially to dip and wash in a pan of water, then sitting on his perch, with his magnificent wings expanded to their full extent, basking in the sun, his head always turned towards that luminary, whose glare he did not mind.
A few nights after his arrival at his new abode, the whole house was aroused by cries as of a child in mortal agony. The night was intensely dark; but at length the boldest of the family ventured out to see what was the matter. In the middle of the grass plot was the eagle, that had evidently a victim over which he was cowering with outspread wings, eroaking a hoarse defiance to the intruder upon his nocturnal banquet. On lights being brought, he hopped off with his prey in one claw to a dark corner, where he was left to enjoy it in peace, as it was evidently not an infant rustic from the neighboring village, as was at first feared.
The mystery, however, was not cleared up for some time, when it was ascertained that he had devoured a hedgehog. He had, doubtless, caught the unlucky animal when on his rounds in search of food, and, in spite of his formidable armor of bristles, had managed to uncoil him with his sharp bill, and devour him. How the prickles found their way down his throat is best known to himself; but it must have been rather a stimulating feast.
The eagle was, with good reason, the terror of all the other pets in the house. On one occasion, he pursued a little black and tan terrier, hopping with fearful jumps, assisted by his wings, which, happily for the affrighted dog, had been recently clipped. To this the little favorite owed his life, as he crept through a hedge which his assailant could not fly over; but it was a narrow escape, for, if the dog's tail had not been between his legs, it would certainly have been seized by the claw which was thrust after him just as he bolted through the briers.
Less fortunate was a beautiful little kitten, the pet of the nursery; a few tufts of hair alone remained to tell what her fate had been. Several guinea pigs and sundry hungry cats
paid the debt of nature through his means; but a sad loss r was that of a jackdaw of remarkable colloquial powers * and unbounded assurance, which, rashly paying a visit of a friendly nature to the eagle, was instantly devoured. Master Jacko, the monkey, on one occasion, only saved his dear life by swiftmess of foot, getting on the branch of a tree just as the eagle came rushing to its foot with outspread wings and open beak. The story is, that Jacko became rather suddenly gray after this ; but the matter is open to doubt.f
One fine summer morning, the window of the breakfast room was thrown open previous to the appearance of the family. On the table was placed a ham of remarkable flavor and general popularity, fully meriting the high praises which had been passed upon it the previous day. The rustling of female garments was heard ; the breakfast room door was opened, and 0, what a sight! There was the eagle perched upon the ham, tearing away at it with unbounded appetite, his talons firmly fixed in the rich, deep fat.
Finding himself disturbed, he endeavored to fly off with the prize, and made a sad clatter with it among the cups and
Finding, however, that it was too heavy for him, he suddenly dropped it on the carpet, snatched up a cold partridge, and made a hasty flight through the window, well satisfied with his foraging expedition. The ham, however, was left in too deplorable a state to bear description.
The eagle was afterwards taken to London, and placed in a court yard, where he resided in solitary majesty. But at length he made his escape. He first managed to flutter up to the top of the wall; thence he took flight unsteadily, and with difficulty, until he had cleared the houses ; but as he ascended into mid air, his strength returned, and he soared majestically away. After his disappearance, his owner said with a discon
* Colloquial powers, powers of talking. These birds are often taught to pronounce words.
of The hair on the head sometimes turns gray, it is said, in a short time, through excessive terror.
solate air, “Well, I've seen the last of my eagle;” but thinking he might possibly find his way back to his old haunt, a chicken was tied to a stick in the court yard ; and, just before dark, Master Eagle came back, his huge wings rustling in the air. The chicken cowered down to the ground, but in vain; the eagle saw him, and pounced down in a moment to his old abode. While he was busily engaged in devouring the chicken, a plaid was thrown over his head, and he was easily secured.
LXXVI. - CONSCIENTIOUSNESS IN LITTLE THINGS.
The word conscientiousness means a great deal ; for a conscientious person is one who does right in all the relations of life; that is, acts in such a manner as to obtain the approbation of his own conscience. It includes truth, honesty, fair dealing, respect for the rights and the reputation of those among whom we live. It would take many lessons to enforce all the duties which a truly conscientious person is bound to discharge; our only purpose at present is to speak of conscientiousness in certain little things.
There are some persons who are conscientious in great matters, but not in small. They would shrink from doing any thing very wrong, but will be often guilty of slight dishonesties and of trifling offences against the rules of good conduct. Some persons, for instance, have a different feeling towards the property of individuals and the property of the public, or a public body. They will carefully respect the former, but not the latter. In walking through the garden of a friend or neighbor, they will carefully abstain from picking a flower or breaking off a twig; but if they visit a public garden or cemetery, they will not hesitate to do so. Much mischief is done in this way. But this is obviously wrong; for what belongs to a public body is no more our own than what belongs to an individual. Such conduct, too, is a most ungrateful return for the pleasure derived from walking through a public park or garden.
Some boys, and some men, have a mischievous habit of hacking benches, tables, desks, and chairs with their knives, and of carving their names upon walls and smooth-barked trees. But this is neither more nor less than injuring or destroying the property of others; and the same law which forbids us to steal, forbids us to do any wanton mischief. What should we say of a boy who should take out his knife, and amuse himself by cutting off the buttons from his companion's jacket? And yet what is the real difference, so far as right and wrong are concerned, between conduct like this and hacking off the corners of a nicely made and painted wooden seat in a common, or park, or public place?
The same want of true moral feeling shows itself in the way in which some persons treat books borrowed from public or circulating libraries. They will write upon the margin, or the blank pages at the beginning and end ; they will fold or crumple the leaves, or permit them to be soiled or greased. But we should treat a book borrowed in this way as well as one of our own. To do otherwise is to be dishonest in a small way, because property is thus injured, and its value diminished. The book wears out the sooner by ill treatment; and the number of those who would derive pleasure or profit from reading it is made less.
In regard to borrowed books there are two rules to be observed : first, they are to be treated with the greatest care; and, second, they are to be returned the moment they are read. Many men and women, and many boys and girls, are very careless in this latter point; but such conduct is wrong. Men who collect books always value them; and it is a kindness in them to lend them to their friends; and it is an ungrateful return to that kindness not to restore them promptly. It must be remembered that the loss of a single book will often spoil a set of many volumes; and when books are not carefully