Abbildungen der Seite

to their heels. Beatte passed several of them, having fixed his eye upon a fine horse that had his ears slit and saddle marks upon his back. He pressed him gallantly, but lost him in the woods.

6. Among the wild horses was a fine black mare, which in scrambling up the defile tripped and fell. A young ranger sprang from his horse, and seized her by the mane and muzzle. Another ranger dismounted and came to his assistance. The mare struggled fiercely, kicking and biting, and striking with her forefeet, but a noose was slipped over her head, and her struggles were in vain.

7. It was some time, however, before she gave over rearing and plunging, and lashing out with her feet on every side. The two rangers then led her along the valley, by two strong lariats, which enabled them to keep at a sufficient distance on each side to be out of the reach of her hoofs, and whenever she struck out in one direction she was jerked in the other. In this way her spirit was gradually subdued.

8. As to Tonish, who had marred the whole scheme by his precipitancy, he had been more successful than he deserved, having managed to catch a beautiful cream-coloured colt about seven months old, that had not strength to keep up with its companions. The mercurial little Frenchman was beside himself with exultation. It was amusing to see him with his prize. The colt would rear and kick, and struggle to get free, when Tonish would take him about the neck, wrestle with him, jump on his back, and cut as many antics as a monkey with a kitten.

9. Nothing surprised me more, however, than to witness how soon these poor animals, thus taken from the unbounded freedom of the prairie, yielded to the



dominion of man. In the course of two or three days the mare and colt went with the led horses and became quite docile.

Washington Irving. dis-ap-peared' clatt'-ered

suc-cess'-ful fu'-ri-ous-ly hand'-ker-chiefs as-sisť-ance com-pan'-ions pur-suit hal-loo'


wres'-tle at-tempt'-ed scram-bling suf-fi'-cient un-bound'-ed flank'-ing par'-ties, the persons at con-tract'-ing, narrowing; closing the side.

in. res'-i-due, remainder.

brake, a place overrun with bushes. pranced, bounded gaily.

de-file', road; valley. reg-u-la'-tions, rules.

muz'-zle, mouth. sys'-tem, method; order.

noose, a running knot which ties the half-breeds, the descendants of

firmer the closer it is drawn. Indians and white people.

sub-dued', overcome. rang'-ers, persons who have charge marred, spoiled. of the chase.

scheme, plan; purpose of the chase. fug'-i-tives, the flying horses.

pre-cip'-i-tan-cy, over-haste. pan'-ic, fright.

ex-ul-ta'-tion, joy. scour'-ing down, running wildly. an'-tics, funny tricks. pro-mis'-cu-ous throng, mixed crowd do-min'-ion, rule; will. of animals.

do'-cile, gentle and obedient. EXERCISES.—1. The Saxon prefix with- means away, from, against ; as withdraw, to draw away; withhold, to hold from; withstand, to stand against.

2. Analyse and parse the following : 'It was in vain that the line drawn across the valley attempted to check and turn back the fugitives.'

3. Make sentences of your own, and use in each one or more of the following words : Contract, subdue, docile, panic.

THE SONG OF THE SHIRT. [This piece, by Thomas Hood, poet and humorist, first appeared in Punch in 1844. It revealed the sorrows and sufferings of the poor London needlewomen, and was successful in arousing the benevolent feeling of the public.] 1. With fingers weary and worn, with eyelids heavy and red, A woman sat, in unwomanly rags, plying her needle and

thread :

Stitch-stitch-stitch! in poverty, hunger, and dirt;
And still, with a voice of dolorous pitch, she sang the

"Song of the Shirt.'



2. Work-work—work! while the cock is crowing aloof; And work—work—work I till the stars shine through the

roof, It's oh to be a slave along with the barbarous Turk, Where woman has never a soul to save, if this is Christian

work !



3. Work-work-work! till the brain begins to swim ;

Work—work—work! till the eyes are heavy and dim.

Seam, and gusset, and band-band, and gusset, and seam, Till over the buttons I fall asleep, and sew them on in a


4. 'O men with sisters dear !—0 men with mothers and

wives! It is not linen you ’re wearing out, but human creatures'

lives! Stitch—stitch-stitch! in poverty, hunger, and dirt, Sewing at once, with a double thread, a shroud as well as

a shirt.

5. But why do I talk of death-that phantom of grisly

bone ? I hardly fear his terrible shape, it seems so like

my ownIt seems so like my own, because of the fasts I keep: Alas! that bread should be so dear, and flesh and blood so


6. “Work—work—work! my labour never flags : And what are its wages ? A bed of straw-a crust of

bread—and rags ; That shattered roof—and this naked floor—a table—a

broken chairAnd a wall so blank, my shadow I thank for sometimes

falling there!

7. Work—work—work! from weary chime to chime,

Work-work-work! as prisoners work for crime. Band, and gusset, and seam- -seam, and gusset, and band, Till the heart is sick, and the brain benumbed, as well as the weary


[ocr errors]

8. Work—work—work ! in the dull December light, And work—work—work! when the weather is warm and


While underneath the eaves the brooding swallows cling,
As if to show me their sunny backs, and twit me with the


9. Oh but to breathe the breath of the cowslip and primrose

sweetWith the sky above my head, and the grass beneath my

feet; For only one short hour to feel as I used to feel, Before I knew the woes of want, and the walk that costs a

meal !

10. “Oh but for one short hour! a respite however brief ! No blessed leisure for love or hope, but only time for

grief ! A little weeping would ease my heart; but in their briny

bed My tears must stop, for every drop hinders needle and



11. With fingers weary and worn, with eyelids heavy and red, A woman sat, in unwomanly rags, plying her needle and

thread :
Stitch-stitch-stitch ! in poverty, hunger, and dirt;

And still with a voice of dolorous pitch,
(Would that its tone could reach the rich !)
She sang this Song of the Shirt.'

Hood. nee'-dle bar'-bar-ous shat'-tered

twit stitch Chris'-tian wea'-ther

leis'-ure ply'-ing, working hard with.

flags, stops; ceases. dol'-or-ous pitch, sad tone.

chime, sound of a clock or bells a-loof', outside; at a distance.

marking the hours. gus'-set, the piece of cloth in a shirt be-numbed', getting tired and which covers the armpit.

stupid. shroud, a dress for a dead body. eaves, the edge of the roof which phan'-tom, a fancied or shadowy overhangs the wall. appearance.

res'-pite, rest; pause from labour. gris'-ly, frightful; without flesh. brin'-y, salt; bitter.



« ZurückWeiter »