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dants. At length, however, they reappeared under the care of the whipper-in-they have but one ; and I am pleased to add they were fortunate enough to have a good hunting run, with a kill, from Pamber Forest.
December 11th.—Met the Vine at Ash Park, the whipper-in acting in the capacity of huntsman. They found in Bramdown, the hounds getting away on good terms with their fox, ran him up-wind with laud. able expedition to a covert called Southly Copse, near South Lichfield ; he then retraced his steps, and regained the covert in which he was found, but he went on and was lost. The whipper-in could never afterwards get on good terms with him, for although there was something like a scent in places to Little Dean Wood, he was certainly not there when the hounds reached it. A second fox, found in Dean Wood, ran to Malshanger and back, but seeing no probability of sport most of the field left them.
On my way homewards, a little anecdote, worthy of recording as regards hållooing, must not be omitted. Just after I had left them near Malshanger, meeting with a shepherd I enquired from him the nearest route to where I wished to go, when I thought I heard a halloo ; expressing my impression to the guardian of the sheep, he replied, “Oh! they be only hallooing for foolishness." What !” I exclaimed, “ Would they halloo without having seen the fox ?" “Oh yes, sir," was the answer. “They'd belike halloo if they saw a gentleman in a red coat, or may-be they'd only halloo just to get the hounds back to them if they zeed 'um going another way; they be fond a zeeing the hounds.” After this genuine explanation, how cautious a huntsman ought to be in going to a halloo ! I have no doubt of the truth of the shepherd's statement.
No pack of hounds can be considered as sufficiently appointed without two whippers-in, and the position in which the Vine have been placed is a proof of it. The huntsman meets with an accident, and is therefore unable to appear with the hounds at the covert side. The whipper-in may be appointed to act the part of the huntsman, but who has he to assist him? No one. At length a stranger is found, but being unacquainted with the hounds he can be but of little use. It must also be remembered hounds will not work for their whipper-in as they have been accustomed to do for their huntsman, independently of which whippingin to hounds and hunting them are essentially different employments. It affords me much satisfaction to announce the huntsman has sufficiently recovered the effects of his fall, as to enable him to reappear at the covert side with the hounds, and resume his duties.
“ TIIE MOON FOR MISCHIEF."
DESIGNED AND ENGRAVED BY H. BECKWITH.
• The devil's in the moon for mischief”.
At least so Byron dared declare, When, as was not uncommon, his chief
Thought was love and lady fair,
The influence of a summer moon
No doubt's a pleasant thing enough ; Just here, though, that's all out of tune
Our hero's made of stouter stuff
Than the looking soft, and “ talking small,”
And making vows, and breathing sighs--Why, such grand “mischief” after all
Is-kissing girls and telling lies. Though the poet's talk may some deceive,
Be ours that “ mischief” sportsmen mean When-Yet just one minute, by your leave
Hey! Presto! and we shift the scene !
Or fancy her you there behold-
“ O! summer night” 's now winter cold.
And that same knight of lady's bower,
Changed with the season of the year, To others gives up the midnight hour
Read little duck for little dear.
How changed, too, from that gay attire
The jacket thick and those long boots, In which some men to ride aspire,
In which our sportsman only shoots.
With dog and gun the old boat's mann'd,
With cautious zeal she's punted out; Steady and soft she feels a hand
That“ mischief” means beyond a doubt. Ye fish-flesh'd-fowl-ye ducks and geese,
I would your danger that you know ! Too late, alas ! well, die in peace;
He'll soon make ducks and drakes of you.
No. II. In Northamptonshire and Buckinghamshire the standard of man's height is inferior to that of other counties in England ; a fact which is accounted for by the difficulty of obtaining fuel, and the intense cold of the general clay soil. The peasant man, however, is the only animal that deteriorates in the climate ; the bullocks are brave beasts, and the mutton choice eating ; the horse thrives on the pasture, and the fox in the cover.
My Lord Southampton hunts a portion of both counties, and Whittlebury Forest, in the centre, extends its dark shades from one extreme of his country to the other. The forest has been the “hunting ground" of the Fitzroys for many generations : here the late Duke of Grafton, in his early days, revelled at peep of day; and here the celebrated Tom Rose, his son Ned Rose, and afterwards George Carter (Mr. Assheton Smith's present huntsman), cheered the Grafton hounds to death and glory-immortal names in the records of Dian. As a scenting country, the forest is first-rate ; but the rides, which are well arranged, are heavy and distressing to horses. In the latter years of George Carter's reign, when Stevens and Dickens, the one right-hand man to 'Squire Lowndes, and the other huntsman to the Warwickshire, played second fiddles to him, the music in Whittlebury Forest was inferior to none. Forty minutes was the term of life vouchsafed to a fox, when he was “handsomely found by these artists and their brilliant pack; and, though the forest was then, as it is now, full of riot, deer bounding in all directions, and frequently crossing the line, as well as following the beaten fox, it is wonderful that such never-failing success should have crowned their efforts! No pack in England, at the time they were sold to Mr. Assheton Smith, stood in higher repute than “the Grafton," when hunted by the above trio.
About the beginning of the present century, nearly fifty years ago, when Robert Bloomfield, author of the “Farmer's Boy," visited Whittlebary, he wrote a copy of verses descriptive of the forest :
" Thy dells by wintry currents worn,
Secluded haunts, how dear to me!
No ear to hear, no eye to see,
And crowned the upland's graceful swell;
Each distant heifer's tinkling bell.
Defy e'en summer's noontide power,
Withholds the clouds, withholds the shower.
Down hazel aisles and arcbes green,
Roared echoing through the solemn scene."