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The flesh of the slaughtered beast becomes the property-not of the man who killed him, but of him who discovered his trail; and the skin is hung on a pole, for the wives of all who took part in the expedition to shoot at with their eyes bandaged. Fortunate is she whose arrow pierces the trophy; not only does it become her prize, but in the eyes of the whole settlement her husband is looked upon thenceforth as the most fortunate of men.
6. As long as the chase is going on, the women are not allowed to stir abroad; but as soon as the party have safely brought home their booty, the whole female population issues from the tents, and having deliberately chewed some bark of a species of alder, they spit the red juice in their husbands' faces, typifying thereby the bear's blood which has been shed in the honourable encounter.
7. Although the forest, the rivers, and the sea supply him in a great measure with food, it is upon the reindeer that the Laplander is dependent for every other comfort in life. The reindeer is his estate, his horse, his cow, his companion, and his friend. He has twentytwo different names for him. His coat, trousers, and shoes are made of reindeer's skin, stitched with thread manufactured from the nerves and sinews of the reindeer. Reindeer milk is the most important item in his diet. Out of reindeer horns are made almost all the utensils used in his domestic economy; and it is the reindeer that carries his baggage, and drags his sledge.
8. But the beauty of this animal is by no means on a par with his various moral and physical endowments. His antlers, indeed, are magnificent, branching back to the length of three or four feet; but his body is poor,
and his limbs thick and ungainly; neither is his pace so rapid as is generally supposed. The Laplanders count distances by the number of horizons they have traversed; and if a reindeer changes the horizon three times during the twenty-four hours, it is thought a good day's work.
9. Moreover, so just an appreciation has the creature of what is due to his great merit, that if his owner seeks to tax him beyond his strength, he not only becomes restive, but sometimes actually turns upon the inconsiderate Jehu who has overdriven him. When, therefore, a Lapp is in a great hurry, instead of taking to his sledge, he puts on a pair of skates exactly twice as long as his own body, and so flies on the wings of the wind.
10. Every Laplander, however poor, has his dozen or two dozen reindeer; and the flocks of a Lapp Croesus amount sometimes to two thousand head. As soon as a young lady is born-after having been duly rolled in the snow-she is dowered by her father with a certain number of deer, which are immediately branded with her initials, and thenceforth kept apart as her especial property. Lord Dufferin.
Ham'-mer-fest, in Norway. It is the
most northerly town in Europe.
tun'-ic, a loose kind of frock. a-pol'-o-gies, excuses.
un-in-ten'-tion-al, not meant or intended.
hove in sight, came in sight. spor'-ran, a kind of pocket.
un-in-tel'-li-gent, without knowledge or skill.
hex-ag-on-al, having six sides. ex-ploit', feat.
trail, footprints or track.
ex-pe-di-tion, hunt; journey in
tro-phy, something that keeps a
typ-i-fy'-ing, showing; meaning.
on a par with, equal to.
hor-i'-zons, the lines which bound
in-i'-tials, first letters of a name.
EXERCISES.-1. The Latin prefix a-, ab-, or abs-, means from or away; as avert, to turn from or away; absolve, to loose from; abstain, to hold from; abstract, to draw from.
2. Analyse and parse the following: 'It is the reindeer that carries his baggage, and drags his sledge.'
3. Make sentences of your own, and use in each one or more of the following words: Diminutive, enormous, exploit, achieve.
A FAVOURITE SCHOOLBOY.
[The following lessons are from the Old Curiosity Shop, by Charles Dickens.]
1. It was a very small place; and the men and boys were playing at cricket on the green. There was only one old man in the little garden before his cottage. He was the schoolmaster, and had 'School' written up over his window in black letters on a white board.
2. As it would soon be dark, Nell ventured to draw near, leading her grandfather by the hand. She dropped a courtesy, and told the schoolmaster they were poor travellers, who sought a shelter for the night. He received them kindly, and conducted them into his little schoolroom, which was parlour and kitchen
likewise, and told them they were welcome to remain under his roof till morning.
3. The child looked round the room as she took her seat. The chief ornaments of the walls were certain moral sentences, fairly copied in good round text, and well-worked sums in simple addition and multiplication, evidently achieved by the same hand, which were plentifully pasted around the room; for the double purpose, as it seemed, of bearing testimony to the excellence of the school, and kindling a worthy emulation in the bosoms of the scholars.
4. 'Yes,' said the schoolmaster, observing that her attention was caught by these specimens, 'that's beautiful writing, my dear.'
'Very, sir,' replied the child, modestly; 'is it yours?'
'Mine!' he returned, taking out his spectacles, and putting them on, to have a better view of the triumphs so dear to his heart; I couldn't write like that nowadays. No: they are all done by one hand ; a little hand it is; not so old as yours, but a very clever one.'
5. As the schoolmaster said this, he saw that a small blot of ink had been thrown upon one of the copies; so he took a penknife from his pocket, and going up to the wall, carefully scratched it out. When he had finished, he walked slowly backward from the writing, admiring it as one might contemplate a beautiful picture, but with something of sadness in his voice and manner, which quite touched the child, though she was unacquainted with its cause.
6. 'A little hand, indeed,' said the poor schoolmaster. 'Far beyond all his companions in his learning and his sports too.
How did he ever come to be so fond of
me? That I should love him is no wonder, but that he should love me'- And there the schoolmaster stopped, and took off his spectacles to wipe them, as though they had grown dim.
'I hope there is nothing the matter, sir,' said Nell anxiously.
'Not much, my dear,' returned the schoolmaster: 'I hoped to have seen him on the green to-night. He was always foremost among them. But he'll be there to-morrow.'
7. 'Has he been ill?' asked the child, with a child's quick sympathy.
'Not very. They said he was wandering in his head yesterday, dear boy, and so they said the day before. But that's a part of that kind of disorder; it's not a bad sign—not at all a bad sign.'
8. The child was silent. He walked to the door, and looked wistfully out. The shadows of night were gathering, and all was still.
'If he could lean on somebody's arm, he would come to me, I know,' he said, returning into the room. 'He always came into the garden to say good-night. But perhaps his illness has only just taken a favourable turn, and it's too late for him to come out, for it's very damp, and there's a heavy dew. It's much better he shouldn't come to-night.'
9. The schoolmaster lighted a candle, fastened the window-shutter, and closed the door. But after he had done this, and sat silent a little time, he took down his hat, and said he would go and satisfy himself, if Nell would sit up till he returned. The child readily complied, and he went out.
10. She sat there half an hour or more, feeling the place very strange and lonely, for she had prevailed