The Boy's Own Natural History

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George Routledge & Sons, 1882 - 64 pages
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Page 28 - But the Nightingale, another of my airy creatures, breathes such sweet loud music out of her little instrumental throat, that it might make mankind to think miracles are not ceased. He that at midnight, when the very labourer sleeps securely, should hear, as I have very often, the clear airs, the sweet descants, the natural rising and falling, the doubling and redoubling of her voice, might well be lifted above earth, and say, " Lord, what music hast thou provided for the Saints in Heaven, when thou...
Page 28 - Though least in size, the glittering mantle of the humming-bird entitles it to the first place in the list of the birds of the new world. It may truly be called the bird of Paradise ; and had it existed in the old world, it would have claimed the title, instead of the bird which has now the honour to bear it. See it darting through the air almost as quick as thought ! — now it is within a yard of your face ! — in an instant gone ! — now it flutters from flower to flower, to sip the silverdew...
Page 6 - ... is extremely grand, and peculiarly striking. It consists, at times, of a low deep moaning, repeated five or six times, ending in faintly audible sighs : at other times he startles the forest with loud deep-toned solemn roars, repeated five or six times in quick succession, each increasing in loudness to the third or fourth, when his voice dies away in five or six low muffled sounds, very much resembling distant thunder.
Page 30 - His expanded wings and tail, glistening with white, and the buoyant gaiety of his action, arresting the eye, as his song most irresistibly does the ear, he sweeps round with enthusiastic ecstasy — he mounts and descends as his song swells or dies away...
Page 59 - Our hungry dogs made a fine feast on them. The cold frosty night had rendered them unable to take wing until the sun should restore their powers. As it was difficult to obtain sufficient food for my dogs, I and Isaac took a large blanket, which we spread under a bush, whose branches were bent to the ground with the mass of locusts which covered it; and having shaken the branches, in an instant I had more locusts than I could carry on my back : these we roasted for ourselves and dogs.
Page 6 - One of the most striking things connected with the Lion is his voice, which is extremely grand and peculiarly striking. It consists, at times, of a low deep moaning, repeated five or six times, ending in faintly audible sighs ; at other times he startles the forest with loud, deep-toned, solemn roars, repeated five or...
Page 38 - These eggs form a considerable item in the Bushman's cuisine, and the shells are converted into water-flasks, cups, and dishes. I have often seen Bushgirls and Bakalahari women, who belong to the wandering Bechuana tribes of the Kalahari desert, come down to the fountains from their remote habitations, sometimes situated at an amazing distance, each carrying on her back a kaross or a net-work containing from twelve to fifteen ostrich egg-shells, which had been emptied by a small aperture at one end...
Page 38 - A favourite method adopted by the wild Bushman for approaching the Ostrich and other varieties of game, is to clothe himself in the skin of one of these birds, in which, taking care of the wind, he stalks about the plain, cunningly imitating the gait and motions of the Ostrich, until within range, when, with a well-directed poisoned arrow from his tiny bow, he can generally seal the fate of any of the ordinary varieties of game.
Page 3 - The great difference between the kassar and the pappan in size would prove at once the distinction of the two species ; the kassar being a small slight animal, by no means formidable in his appearance, with hands and feet proportioned to the body, and they do not approach the gigantic extremities of the pappan either in size or power; and, in short, a moderately strong man would readily overpower one, when he would not stand the shadow of a chance with the pappan.

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