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came so fatal, that when an officer was foundly tranquil for an hour and three appointed to the command, he arrang- quarters, when an approaching noise ed his affairs previous to setting out. was heard, and in an instant, amidst
“ Things continued thus until the loud shouts of Alla, Alla, our front month of August. Some skirmishing rank was charged and overthrown, occurred, without changing the posi- partly by the fire, partly by the shock, tions of the armies ; but there was no of 700 or 800 Turks. An equal numprospect of a general engagement. ber of the enemy were dismounted by About a week before the twentieth, their own impetuosity and our carathe Bohemian, from whom I had oc- bines; but they were completely accasionally purchased supplies, appear- quainted with the ground, and we ed before me. She entered my tent, were thrown into disorder, surroundand requested I would bequeath her ed, and defeated. I received many a legacy, in the event of my death wounds, and my charger fell under happening on the day which she had me, fixing my right leg immoveably pointed out as the completion of my to this field of blood, where, all around, destiny. She even offered to make scenes of the most savage butchery me a present of a hamper of Tokay, if were partially revealed by the appalher prediction failed. This wine was ling and momentary illumination of very rare and precious. The fortune the fire-arms. Our troops fought with teller seemed to me bereft of under- the courage of despair ; while the standing. In the situation I was Turks, superior in number, and stiplaced in, a proximate death was not mulated by opium, made a horrible improbable, but I had no reason to slaughter; and in a little space not a apprehend it precisely on the twen- single Austrian remained capable of tieth. I agreed, however, to pledge resistance. Such was the twentieth of two chargers and fifty ducats against August. the Tokay; and the paymaster of the “The conquerors, having seized regiment, not without laughter, re- the horses, which were still fit for duced the wager into writing.
service, and pillaged the dead and dy“ The twentieth of August arrived; ing, finally began to cut off the heads, and it happened to be our turn to and place them in sacks which they provide the piquet ; two of my com- had brought for the purpose. The rades, however, had to take the com- corps of Czekler had ample means to mand before it fell to me. The even- know the ferocious disposition of the ing advanced, and the hussars were enemy, and my situation was consemounted and ready to march, when quently not very enviable, especially the surgeon arrived to announce the as I heard them urging dispatch, lest sudden and dangerous illness of the succour should arrive, and that the officer on duty; he, who succeeded night's work ought to produce two the invalid, and was immediately a- hundred ducats,--so very accurate was bove me, received orders to replace their information. him ; he hastily armed himself and “In the meantime, they passed and joined the detachment; but his horse, repassed over me; and, while legs, which was uncommonly gentle and arms, and bullets, flew around, my docile, reared of a sudden, plunged horse received another wound, and his incessantly, and dismounted his mas- convulsive struggles enabled me to ter, who, in falling, fractured his leg. extricate my leg. I instantly arose, Behold my time come ; and I depart- and resolved to throw myself into the ed; but, I must candidly confess, not morass, in the hope of being sheltered in my usual spirits.
among the reeds. I had observed se“I commanded 80 men, who were veral of our people make the attempt joined by 120 from another regiment. unsuccessfully, but the firing had, in Our position was nearly a mile in a great measure, ceased, and the darkadvance of the left wing, and, as we ness gave me confidence. Although were protected by a deep and exten- the distance was trifling, the danger of sive morass, covered with lofty reeds, being whelmed in the waters was imwe did not consider videttes necessary. minent; nevertheless, I sprung over No one, however, quitted his saddle, men and horses, and overthrew more and the orders were, to remain till than one Turk who attempted to cut • morning, sword in hand, and cara- me down. My good star, and my agibines loaded. All continued pro- lity, enabled ine to attain the morass,
into which I only ventured to the chin-piece of my Hussar cap. I was depth of my knee, crouching as I ad- without arms, incapable of defending vanced among the reeds, until fa- myself, and, on the slightest resisttigue compelled me to pause, when I ance, he threatened to bury his sabre heard an exclamation that an Infidel in my breast; yet I clung to his had escaped,-let us seek him.' waist, while he was employed in Other voices replied, that cannot be baring my neck, and continued to ventured on in the morass.' I know supplicate his compassion. “My fanot if the attempt was made, as loss mily is rich,-make me your prisonof blood, extreme weakness, and in- er, you shall have a large ransom.” tense anxiety, produced a faintishness - That would take too much time,” which lasted several hours; and when he rejoined, “ keep thyself quiet; all I recovered my senses, it was broad will soon be over;" and he had now day-light.
drawn the breast-pin from my shirt * I was buried in the mud to the Still I held him embraced ; and, whea middle; my hair rose erect at the ther he was proudly confident in his horrible images of the night, and the superior strength and the advantage twentieth of August was one of my of his arms, or that a fleeting remnant first thoughts. I counted my wounds, of pity had for an instant weighed on to the number of eight, but none ap- his heart, which the avail of a single peared dangerous, as they were chief- ducat soon outbalanced, he did not ly sabre cuts on my arms and body. seem to notice my actions. Just, The evenings of autumn in that coun- however, as he took out the breasttry are very chill; I had, therefore, pin, I felt something heavy near his worn a thick pelisse, which had ma- waist; it was a steel hammer, occaterially protected me; at the same sionally used instead of the battle-axe time, I was very feeble.
in close combat. Already he held up “I listened to ascertain if the ene- my head with one hand, brandishing my had departed, but nothing came his enormous sabre with the other, o'er the ear but the groans of the coolly repeating, “ keep thyself quiet, wounded horses. As to the riders, that I may cut it off the more easily the Turks had rendered them quiet for thee." Assuredly these were the enough.
last words I should ever have heard, “I exerted myself to get out of but that nature, revolted at such a may place of concealment, which I ac- death with so irresistible an impulse, complished in about an hour, the that, in the same moment, I sprung traces which I had left among the from his grasp, tore the hammer from reeds forming a safe guide ; but, al- his girdle, and dashed it, with my though this sanguinary warfare had whole strength, full in his face. The peculiarly hardened the feelings, still attack was unexpected, the weapon in my lonely and defenceless state, I was massive,-the blow did not fail, could not subdue a movement of ap- and it was repeated with almost inprehension, when I first advanced credible celerity. The Arnaut reeled from this sylum. My regards were and fell, and his sabre escaped from naturally and immediately attracted his relaxed hold; I seized it, and I to the scene of massacre, where, of need scarcely add, plunged it repeate all my comrades, I singly stood in edly into his body. safety. But how shall I describe the “On recovering my breath, I made horror and alarm of finding myself, at to the outposts, directed by the glitter the very moment of supposed emanci- of their arms in the sun ; but all fled pation, rudely seized by the arm. On from me as a spectre ; and I was the looking up, I saw an Arnaut of gigan- same day seized with a high fever, tic stature, armed to the teeth, who and carried to the hospital. had returned to examine if there was “At the expiration of six weeks I yet any remaining plunder. Never recovered both of the fever and my was hope so bitterly disappointed. I wounds, and returned to the camp. addressed him in the Turkish lan. On my arrival, the Bohemian broughtguage, “ Take my watch,-my purse, me the Tokay, and I learnt from my --my uniform, but do not kill me.” companions, that, during my confine"All these,” he replied, “ are mine; ment, this extraordinary woman, by and, what is more, thy head ;” and her predictions, which were in almost he deliberately began to unfasten the every instance accomplished to the 110 Strictures on “Observations on the Natural History of Birds.” [Feb. very letter, had acquired paramount that, on the near approach of the influence, obtained many legacies, and twentieth of August, the Hussars of was universally consulted as to the de- Czekler might be on duty. From crees of fate. This was very strange. constant intercourse with the officers,
“At length two deserters came over she knew that two of my comrades from the enemy, and recognized our preceded me in command. To the fortuneteller as well known in the one she sold drugged wine, and he camp of the Turks, to whom, they was taken dangerously ill; and, just said, by means of nocturnal visits, as the other had mounted, she conshe had communicated our move- trived to thrust burning tinder into ments and intentions. This also the nostrils of his charger.” D. created much astonishment, as she had often been of important service to us,
STRICTURES ON OBSERVATIONS ON and we had wondered at the address
THE NATURAL HISTORY OF BIRDS." and ability with which she had executed the most perilous commissions. MR EDITOR, But the deserters persisted in their evi- The “ Observations on the Natudence; they had frequently been pre- ral History of Birds,” which appearsent when she communicated our po- ed in your Miscellany in September sitions and strength,-betrayed our last, having failed to draw forth the plans,-and enabled the enemy to opinions of your ornithological friends succeed in their attacks. The events on the subject, the following remarks which had actually happened afforded are, in consequence, submitted to the strong presumptions against her; and consideration of your readers. a Turkish cypher, which served as a Your correspondent A. states, as passport, being found in her posses- the result of his own experience, that sion, rendered her death indispen- “if the nest (of the lapwing) is dissable.
covered as soon as the bird has begun “ I then urged the Bohemian as to to lay, and you remove an egg, so as her predictions, and she avowed, in to allow only one or two to remain in general, that, by acting alternately as the nest, the bird will continue to lay a spy for each party, she had obtained for ten or twelve days, nay, for weeks, double emolument, with complete successively. If, however, you allow personal security. By this means she the number to reach four, it immeJearnt the secret plans of both; and diately begins to hatch, and there is she knew precisely what was to be at- no further deposition of eggs.". By tempted by either. Those who con- thus robbing the nest, he has induced sulted her on their destiny confided this bird to lay ten eggs, while the to her all the dangers they were to ordinary number is four. He has encounter. The most secret projects tried the same experiment with the were thus revealed to her in detail. common lark, and with equal sucHer calculation was almost always a demonstration ; and sometimes, where The opinion, that some birds will she did not possess these advantages, lay more than their ordinary number chance befriended her.
of eggs, by daily abstracting one from “In my particular instance, she the nest, has received considerable was desirous to impress an irresistible support from the learned author of belief in her unerring knowledge. I the British Zoology, who, when speakwas selected as a striking example of ing of the house or chimney swallow, her skill; and, by fixing my fate at a says,—" It lines the bottom (of its remote period, and in utter disregard nest) with feathers and grasses, and of all ordinary hazards, even of the usually lays from four to six eggs, immediate and constant skirmishes of white, speckled with red; but, by takthe cavalry, the hair-breadth scapes, ing away one of the eggs daily, it will which, in my situation, were an every- successively lay as far as nineteen, as day occurrence, she trusted to obtain Dr Lister has experienced.”—Penunbounded confidence.
nant's Brit. Zool. Vol. I. p. 400. Lon“ From her information, our centi- don, 1776. But the experience of nels were cut off, and our piquets Lister stands in opposition to the pooverthrown ; but the attacks upon sitive testimony of the late Mr Monour night guards were arranged so as tagu, who, when speaking of this opia to suit her predictions, and especially nion respecting incubation, says, –
“ We believe there never was an in- ber laid by a Hedge Sparrow is comstance, (of a bird laying more eggs suc- monly five, sometimes only four, and cessively, by taking one from the nest rarely six-will the taking away the daily,) at least we have never been daily laid egg produce a seventh or an fortunate enough to discover one in eighth? No."-Ibid. the great variety of experiments we From this view of the matter, your have tried on various birds, amongst correspondent A. must excuse our which was the swallow, which has been want of confidence in his boyish redeclared to lay as many as nineteen.” collections, since they thus stand in Mont. Ornithological Dictionary, Vol. opposition to the high authority of 1. Introd. xi. Now, it is well known one whose opinion on the subject was to every student of British ornitholo- the result of numerous and diversified gy, that Montagu paid very great at- experiments. We would, however, tention to the habits of birds, so that earnestly recommend the repetition of his testimony on such a subject should these experiments to those whose sibe received with confidence.
tuations are favourable for making In our younger days, we gave credit şuch observations, to the efficacy of robbing a nest in Although we have thus opposed the making a bird lay more than her usual doctrine which your correspondent A. number of eggs, because such an opi- thinks he has established, we have nion was current among our school had no other object in doing so, than companions. Our experiments, how- to communicate the few historical noever, tried on the Magpie, Sparrow, tices of the subject in our possession ; and Wren, were invariably unsuccess- and we hope he will continue to faful, so that, at last, we ranked this vour your readers with those facts in current belief in the list of popular the history of animals which he has errors. Indeed, were such a habit to ascertained.
PhysicUS. prevail in birds, it would stand in opposition to all our notions of the laws of reproduction. On this subject the reasoning of Montagu appears conclusive. • Those who suppose a bird MR EDITOR, capable of producing eggs at will, or In one of your early numbers I obthat any bird is excited to lay more serve some remarks on the Natural eggs than usual by daily robbing their History of Birds, which are extreme nest, are certainly mistaken. In a do- ly curious. I wish your correspondmesticated fowl, it is probable the de- ent would continue his anecdotes, for sire of incubation may be prolonged his facts are most interesting, and, I by leaving little or nothing in the nest .am convinced, they are not generally to sit on. It will, therefore, lay the known among the learned, however number allotted by Nature, which is familiar they may be to every herddetermined before the first egg is pro- boy in Scotland. A great many years duced. If it is prevented from incu- ago, a worthy farmer of my acquaintbation by any means whatever, it may ance, in the lower district of Annanbegin again to lay in five or six days; dale, took it into his head to rob a but there is always an interval of a wild duck of her eggs, which he had few days, and sometimes as many accidentally discovered, and to place weeks, which must wholly depend on them under one of his tame ducks the age and vigour of the bird. When that was hatching at the same time. it happens that a fresh lot of eggs is The young brood (twelve in number) laid, with only a few days interval, came into the world at the usual period, and that, perhaps, in the same nest, it but, notwithstanding the attention is deemed a continuation, for want of which he paid to them, they were nice observation ; but we are not to all lost or destroyed, except one which look to domesticated animals for na- continued with her step-dame. This tural causes, for those are taken from singular bird never perfectly acquired their state of nature. Let us look to the habits or dispositions of her dobirds in their natural wild state, and mestic sisterhood,-she never would see if any well-attested instances are submit to the embraces of a tame to be found where they have laid more drake,--and every spring she left the eggs successively, by taking one from farm-yard and proceeded to the wilds the nest daily; for instance, the num- in quest of a mate. She seemed to
CURIOUS FACTS IN NATURAL HIS
have a malicious pleasure, if I may so grating birds return not only to the express it, in leading her lovers into a same district or town, but the swalsnare; and was at great pains to draw low, for instance, if not prevented, to them into such situations as admitted the same house, and even to the same of their being easily shot. I have of- window where it was hatched, there ten known two or three of her follows to bring forth its young. I know this ers killed in the course of a day. She from actual experiment. I would say always hatched her young in a peat the same thing of fishes; and I think moss at some distance from the house, this fact is pretty well ascertained, but never failed to bring them to the both with regard to the salmon and farm-yard as soon as they were able the herring. Independent of the to follow her. During the whole great difference between the herrings time of rearing them, she was unu- on the east and west coasts of Scotsually tame, and with difficulty could land, there are few of your Scots readbe kept out of the kitchen, endeavour- ers, I should suppose, who are unacing, as it were, by every means in her quainted with the superior excellence power, to make her wild progeny fa- of the Lochfine herring ; and it is miliar with man. I need not tell you well known, that fish of the same size that this duck became a great pet with and quality are found on no other part all the neighbourhood; and many a of our coasts. I consider them, then, wild duck was spared by the fowler as a particular tribe, that return regulest he should kill the favourite Jen- larly to their own breeding ground. ny. When this duck was about four In the Western Islands, the experienyears old, my friend was visited by a ced fishermen will tell the particular kinsman of his from Fife, who was so loch from which a parcel of herrings much taken with her that he begged are taken,-so marked is the difference for and obtained her as a present. She between the several tribes, even when was put into a cage, and by him con- the neck of land which separates the veyed to Edinburgh, where he had a two arms of the sea does not exceed a small silver collar made for her, with mile or two in breadth. To condescend his name and address engraven upon upon particulars, there is a marked it ; and with this he carried her in difference between the herrings caught triumph to his house near Kinross. in Lochbuy and those caught in LochShe was kept in confinement for a scridden, which lie both on the west night and a day; when, seeming per- coast of Mull, and not many miles fectly contented, she was let out into asunder. The fishermen on the Solthe yard. She set about adjusting way Firth, I believe, could easily tell herself for sometime, then suddenly you, when they kill a salmon, whether took wing, and, in the course of a few it was a native of the Annan or the hours, was among her old companions Nith. If these remarks are considerin Annandale. She was a second time ed worthy of a place in your Miscelconveyed to Fife, and her wings clipt. lany, you may perhaps hear again She continued perfectly happy to ap- from
AN INQUIRER. pearance till her feathers grew, when Jan. 12, 1818. she again bade her new friends farewell. It would appear that she was obliged this time to rest by the way, OBSERVATIONS ON THE AGAMEMNON as she was shot in the neighbourhood
OF ESCHYLUS, ILLUSTRATED WITH of Biggar by a gentleman, who com
TRANSLATIONS. municated the circumstance to the owner, with the collar which was
(Concluded from page 31.) found about her neck with his name Upon the conclusion of the speech and place of abode. We have often which was last quoted, Cassandra heard, Mr Editor, of the sagacity of enters into the fatal palace, going, as dogs, and even of cats ; and I know the poet afterwards expresses it, myself several instances where these animals have found their way back to “ Like a swan to death, singing her dirge," their original dwellings, after being conveyed to very great distances ; but and, in a few moments after her dethis case proves that the feathered parture, redoubled shrieks behind the tribe have also some degree of instinct. scene announce the murder of AgaIt is a well known fact, that all emimemnon. The Chorus, upon this oc