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well-regulated affections, and extensive benevolence! In these consists that sovereign good, which ancient sages so much extol ; which reason recommends, religion authorises, and God approves.

PERCIVAL,

CHAPTER IV.

1

DESCRIPTIVE PIECES.

SECTION I.

The Eagle. 1. The Golden Eagle is the largest and the noblest of all those birds that have received the name of eagle. It weighs above twelve pounds. Its length is three feet; the extent of its wings, seven feet four inches; the bill is three inches long, and of a deep blue; and the eye of a hazel color. In general, these birds are found in mountains and thinly inhabited countries; and breed among the loftiest cliffs. They choose those places which are remotest from man, upon whose possessions they but seldom make their depredations, being contented rather to follow the wild game in the forest, than to risk their safety to satisfy their hunger.

2. This fierce animal may be considered among birds, as the lion among quadrupeds; and, in many respects, they have a strony similitude to each other. They are both possessed of force, and an empire over their fellows of the forest. Equally magnanimous, they disdain small. plunder; and only pursue animals worthy the conquesto, It is not till after having been long provoked by the cries of the rook or the magpie, that this generous bird thinks fit to punish them with death.

3. The eagle also disdains to share the plunder of another bird ; and will take up with no other prey than that which he has acquired by his own pursuits. How hungry soever he may be, he stoops not to carrion ; and when satiated, never returns to the same carcass, but leaves it for other animals, more rapacious and less delicate than himself. Solitary, like the lion, he keeps the desert to himself alone; it is as extraordinary to see two pair of

eagles in the same mountain, as two lions in the saře forest.

4. They keep separate, to find a more ample supply ; and consider the quantity of their game as the best proof of their dominión. Nor does the similitude of these animals stop here : they have both sparkling eyes, and nearly of the same color; their claws are of the same form, their breath equally strong, and their cry equally loud and terrifying. Bred both for war, they are enemies of all society ; alike fierce, proud, and incapable of being easily tamed.

5. Of all the feathered tribe, the eagle flies the highest; and from thence the ancients have given them the title of the bird of heaven. He possesses also the sharpest sight: but his sense of smelling, though acute, is inferior to that of a vulture. He never pursues, but when his object is in view; and having seized his prey, .he stoops from his height, as if to examine its weight, always laying it on the ground before he carries it off. He finds no difficulty in taking up geese and cranes.

He also carries away hares, lambs, and kids: and often destroys fawns and calves, to drink their blood; and bears a part of their flesh to his retreat.

6. Infants themselves, when left unattended, have been destroyed by these rapacious creatures. An instance is recorded in Scotland, of two children having been carried off by eagles; but fortunately they received no hurt by the way; and, the eagles being pursued, the children were found unhurt in the nests, and restored to the affrighted parents.

7. The eagle is thus at all times a formidable neighbor ; but peculiarly so when bringing up its young.

It is then that the male and female exert all their force and industry to supply their offspring. Smith, in his history of Kerry, relates, that a poor man in that country got a comfortable subsistence for his family, during a summer of famine, out of an eagle's nest, by robbing the eagles of food, which was plentifully supplied by the old ones.

8. He protracted their assiduity beyond the usual time, by clipping the wings, and retarding the flight of the young; and very probably also, as I have known myself, by so tying them, as to increase their cries, which are always found to increase the parent's despatch to procure them

dred years.

GOLDSMITII.

provision. It was fortunate, however, that the old eagles did not surprise the countryman thus employed, as their resentnient might have been dangerous.

9. It requires great patience and much art to tame an eagle; and even though taken young, and subdued by long assiduity, yet it is a dangerous domestic, and often turns its force against its master. When brought into the field for the purposes of fowling, the falconer is never sure of its attachment; its innate pride, and love of liberty still prompt it to regain its native solitudes. Sometimes, however, eagles are brought to have an attachment to their feeder; they are then highly serviceable, and liberally provide for his pleasures and support.

10. When the falconer lets them go from his hand, they play about and hover round him till their game presents, which they see at an immense distance, and pursue with certain destruction.

11. It is said that the eagle can live many weeks without food ; and that the period of his life exceeds a hun.

SECTION II.

The humming-bird. 1. Or all the birds that flutter in the garden, or paint the landscape, the humming-bird is the most delightful to look upon, and the most inoffensive. Of this charming little animal, there are six or seven varieties, from the size of a small wren, down to that of an humble-bée. A European would not readily suppose that there existed any birds so very small, and yet so completely furnished with bill, feathers, wings, and intestines, exactly resembling those of the largest kind.

2. Birds not so big as the end of one's little finger, would probably be supposed mere creatures of imagination, were they not seen in infinite numbers, and as frequent as butterflies in a summer's day, sporting in the fields of America, from flower to ilower, and extracting sweets with their little bills.

3. The smallest humming-bird is about the size of a hazel-nut. The feathers on its wings and tail are black; but those on its body,' and under its wings, are of a greenish brown, with a fine red cast or gloss, which no silk or relvet can imitate. It has a small crest on its head, green at the bottom, and as it were gilded at the top; and which sparkles in the sun like a little star in the iniddle of its forehead. The bill is black, straight, slender, and of the length of a small pin.

4. It is inconceivable how much these birds add to the high finishing a d beauty of a rich luxurious western landscape. As soon as the sun is risen, the humming-birds, of different kinds, are seen fluttering about the flowers, without ever lighting upon them. Their wings are in so rapid motion, that it is impossible to discern their colors, except by their glittering.

5. They are never still, but continually in motion, visiting flower after flower, and extracting its honey as if with a kiss. For this purpose they are furnished with a forky tongue, that enters the cup of the flower, and extracts its nectared tribute. Upon this alone they subsist. The rapid motion of their wings occasions a humming sound, from whence they have their name; for whatever divides the air swiftly, must produce a murmur.

6. The nests of these birds are also very curious. They are suspended in the air, at the point of the twigs of an orange, a pomegranate, or a citron tree; sometimes even in the houses, if a small and convenient twig is found for the purpose. The female is the architect, while the male goes in quest of materials; such as cotton, fine moss, and the fibres of vegetables. Of these materials, a nest is composed, about the size of a hen's egg cut in two: it is admirably contrived, and warmly lined with cotton.

7. There are never more than two eggs found in a nest; these are about the size of small peas, and as white as snow, with here and there a yellow speck. The inale and the female sit upon the nest by turns ; but the female takes to herself the greatest share. She seldom quits the nest, except a few minutes in the morning and evening, when the dew is upon the flowers, and their honey in perfection.

8. During the short interval the male takes her place. The time of incubation continues twelve days; at the end of which the young ones appear, much about the size of a blue-bottle fly. They are at first bare; by degrees they are covered with dowr; and at last, feathers succeed, but less beautiful, at first, than those of the old ones. 9. Father Labat, in his account of the mission to America, says, “ that his companion found the nest of a humming-bird, in a shed near the dwelling-house; and took it in, at a time when the young ones were about fifteen or twenty days old. He placed them in a cage at his chamber window, to be amused by their sportive flatterings : but he was much surprised to see the old ones, which came and fed their brood regularly every hour in the day. By this means they themselves grew so tame, that they seldom quitted the chamber; and without any constraint, came to live with their young ones.

10. “All four frequently perched upon their master's hand, chirping as if they had been at liberty abroad. He fed them with a very fine clear paste, made of wine, biscuit, and sugar. They thrust their tongues into this paste, till they were satisfied, and then fluttered and chirped about the room. I never beheld any thing more agreeable," continues he, “than this lovely little family, which had possession of my companion's chamber, and flew in and out just as they thought proper ; but were ever attentive to the voice of their master, when he called them.

11. “In this manner they had lived with him above six months. But at a time when he expected to see a new colony formed, he unfortuuately forgot to tie up their cage to the ceiling at night, to preserve them from the rats, and he found in the morning, to his great mortification, that they were all devoured.”

GOLDSMITH.

SECTION III.

The Horse. 1. Of all quadrupeas, the horse appears to be the most beautiful. His fine size, the glossy smoothness of his skin, the graceful ease of his motions, and the exact symmetry of his shape, entitle him to this distinction.

2. To have an idea of this noble animal in his native simplicity, we are not to look for him in the pastures, or the stables, to which he has been consigned by man; but in those wild and extensive plains, where he was originaily produced, where he ranges without control, and riots in all the variety of luxurious nature. In this state of

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