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bloody beak upon the bark. A youth who I have often wondered how this bird was was with me, to whom I pointed out the kept in check; in the struggle for existence, fact, had never heard of such a thing, and it would appear to have greatly the adwas much incensed at the shrike.“ Let me vantage of other birds. It cannot, for fire a stone at him," said he, and jumping instance, be beset with one-tenth of the out of the wagon he pulled off his mittens, dangers that threaten the robin, and yet and fumbled about for a stone. Having apparently there are a thousand robins to found one to his liking, with great earnest- every shrike. It builds a warm, compact ness and deliberation he let drive. The nest in the mountains and dense woods, and bird was in more danger than. I had imag- lays six eggs, which would indicate a rapid ined, for he escaped only by a hair's increase. The pigeon lays but two eggs, breadth; a guiltless bird like the robin or and is preyed upon by both man and beast, sparrow would have been slain; the mis- millions of them meeting a murderous death sile grazed the spot where the shrike sat, every year; yet always some part of the and cut the ends of his wings as he darted country is swarming with untold numbers of behind the branch. We could see that the them. But the shrike is one of our rarest murdered bird had been brained, as its head birds. I myself seldom see more than two hung down toward us.
each year, and before I became an observer The shrike is not a summer bird with us of birds, I never saw any. in the northern states, but mainly a fall and In size, the shrike is a little inferior to the winter one. In summer he goes farther blue-jay, with much the same form. If you north. I see him most frequently in No- see an unknown bird about your orchard or vember and December. A few days since fields in November or December of a bluish, we had one of those clear, motionless grayish complexion, with dusky wings and November mornings; the air was like a tail that show markings of white, flying rather great drum. Apparently every sound within heavily from point to point, or alighting the compass of the horizon was distinctly down in the stubble occasionally, it is pretty heard. The explosions back in the cement sure to be the shrike. quarries ten miles away smote the hollow and reverberating air like giant fists. Just
v. as the sun first showed his fiery brow above the horizon, a gun was discharged over the NATURE never tires of repeating and mulriver. On the instant, a shrike, perched on tiplying the same species. She makes a the topmost spray of a maple above the million bees, a million birds, a million mice, house, set up a loud, harsh call or whistle, or rats, or other animals so nearly alike that suggestive of certain notes of the blue- no eye can tell one from another ; but it is jay. The note presently became a crude, rarely that she issues a small and a large edibroken warble. Even this scalper of the tion, as it were, of the same species. Yet innocents had music in his soul on such she has done it in a few cases among the a morning. He saluted the sun as a robin birds with hardly more difference than a might have done. After he had finished, foot-note added or omitted. The cedarhe flew away toward the east.
bird, for instance, is the Bohemian waxThe shrike is a citizen of the world, being wing or chatterer in smaller type, copied found in both hemispheres. It does not even to the minute, wax-like appendages appear that the European species differs that bedeck the ends of the wing-quills. It essentially from our own. In Germany he is about one-third smaller, and a little lighter is called the nine-killer, from the belief that in color, owing perhaps to the fact that it is he kills and sticks upon thorns nine grass-confined to a warmer latitude, its northward hoppers a day.
range seeming to end about where that of Thoreau speaks of the shrike“ with heed its larger brother begins. Its flight, its note, less and unfrozen melody bringing back its manners, its general character and habits summer again." But his voice is that of a are almost identical with those of its protosavage-strident and disagreeable.
type. It is confined exclusively to this con
tinent, while the chatterer is an Old World "His steady sails he never furls
bird as well, and ranges the northern parts At any time o' year,
of both continents. The latter comes to us And perching now on winter's curls, He whistles in his ear,"
from the hyperborean regions, brought down
occasiona by the great cold waves that sings Thoreau.
originate in those high latitudes. It is a VOL. XV.-24.
bird of Siberian and Alaskan evergreens, and ment is a fife tuned to love and not to war. passes its life for the most part far beyond | He blows a clear, round note, rapid and the haunts of man. I have never seen the intricate, but full of sweetness and melody. bird, but small bands of them make excur- His hardier relative with that larger beak sions every winter down into our territory and deeper chest must fill the woods with from British America. Audubon, I believe, sounds. Audubon describes its song as exsaw them in Maine; other observers have ceedingly rich and full. seen them in Minnesota. It has the crest As in the case of the Bohemian wax-wing, of the cedar-bird, the same yellow border to this bird is also common to both worlds, its tail, but is marked with white on its being found through Northern Europe and wings, as if a snow-flake or two had adhered Asia and the northern parts of this continent. to it from the northern cedars and pines. It is the pet of the pine-tree and one of its If you see about the evergreens in the cold- brightest denizens. "Its visits to the states est, snowiest weather what appear to be a are irregular and somewhat mysterious. A number of very large cherry-birds, observe great flight of them occurred in the winter them well, for the chances are that visitants of '74-5. They attracted attention all over from the circumpolar regions are before the country. Several other flights of them your door. It is a sign also that the frost have occurred dụring the century. When legions of the north are out in great force this bird comes, it is so unacquainted with and carrying all before them.
man, that its tameness is delightful to behold. Our cedar or cherry bird is the most silent It thrives remarkably well in captivity, and bird we have. Our neutral-tinted birds, in a couple of weeks will become so tame like him, as a rule, are our finest songsters; that it will hop down and feed out of its but he has no song or call, uttering only a master's or mistress's hand. It comes from fine bead-like note on taking flight. It is far beyond the region of the apple, yet it the cedar-berry rendered back in sound. takes at once to this fruit, or rather to the When the ox-heart cherries, which he has seeds, which it is quick to divine, at its core. only recently become acquainted with, have Close akin to these two birds and standhad time to enlarge his pipe and warm his ing in the same relation to each other are heart, I shall expect more music from him. two other birds that come to us from the But in lieu of music, what a pretty compen- oppositezone,-the torrid, -namely, the blue sation are those minute, almost artificial grosbeak and his petit duplicate, the indigolike, plumes of orange and vermilion that bird. The latter is a common summer resitip the ends of his primaries. Nature could dent with us,-a bird of the groves and not give him these and a song too,
She bushy fields, where his bright song may be has given the humming-bird a jewel upon heard all through the long summer day. I his throat, but no song, save the hum of his hear it in the dry and parched August when wings.
most birds are silent, sometimes delivered on Another bird that is occasionally borne to the wing and sometimes from the perch. us on the crest of the cold waves from the Indeed, with me, its song is as much a midfrozen zone, and that is repeated on a smaller summer sound as is the brassy crescendo of scale in a permanent resident is the pine the cicada. The memory of its note calls grosbeak; his alter ego reduced in size, is to mind the flame-like quiver of the heated the purple finch, which abounds in the higher atmosphere, and the bright glare of the me latitudes of the temperate zone. The color ridian sun. Its color is much more intense and form of the two birds are again essen- than that of the common blue-bird, as sumtially the same. The females and young mer skies are deeper than those of April
, males of both species are of a grayish-brown but its note is less mellow and tender. Its like the sparrow, while in the old males this original, the blue grosbeak, is an uncertain tint is imperfectly hidden beneath a coat of | wanderer from the south, as the pine carmine, as if the color had been poured grosbeak is from the north. upon their heads, where it is strongest, and seen it north of the District of Columbia. so oozed down and through the rest of the It has a loud vivacious song, of which it is plumage. Their tails are considerably forked, not stingy, and which is a large and free their beaks cone-shaped and heavy, and rendering of the indigo's, and belongs to their flight undulating. Those who have
Those who have summer more than to spring. The bird is heard the grosbeak, describe its song as sim- colored the same as its lesser brother, the ilar to that of the finch, though no doubt it males being a deep blue and the females a is louder and stronger. The finch's instru- modest drab. Its nest is usually placed low
down, as is the indigo's, and the male carols carrying its form and voice forward as the from the tops of the trees in its vicinity in reverberation carries the sound. the same manner. Indeed, the two birds I know the ornithologists, with their hairare strikingly alike in every respect except splittings, or rather feather-splittings, point in size and habitat, and, as in each of the out many differences, but they are unimporother cases, the lesser bird is, as it were, tant. The fractions may not agree, but the the point, the continuation, of the larger, | whole numbers are the same.
BY ADELINE TRAFTON.
had crept unknown to himself very close to
his heart. But the captain was both cautious THE RESCUE.
and proud, and by no means so far gone in CAPTAIN Elyot had felt little interest in his infatuation as not to be able to speculate the ball. He was low-spirited over the upon the future of the man who should win departure of the boy, whom he had taken the sutler's daughter. He must leave the under his care since their ride over the plains army: of that there was no question. The together. In his heart he was sore and social ostracism which would follow such a almost angry that he was not to go in Orme's step would be unbearable to a man of spirit. place. If one were to fall how much better And then in one of those sudden visions, vivid that he should be that one rather than the as reality, only more intensified,—liketheconlieutenant. Life held few charms for him centration of a dozen realities, Blossom's just now, and there is a sweetness in self- baby face with its meek, entreating eyes rose sacrifice-in that kind of Enoch Arden self- before him, and he forgot his prejudices, sacrifice which ends in the object at last forgot his pride. He could have taken her knowing all about it and being made com- in his arms before all the world! He threw fortably wretched. And so, years hence, off the delusion that made her seem present when his bones were bleaching and crum- for the moment. Such fancies were not in bling on the spot where he had fallen, in accordance with the spirit of the promise place of the lieutenant, he would like the he had made to his friend. It was not well lieutenant to know the cause of it. Some for him to sit here and brood alone over such fancy as this passed through his head as his unquiet thoughts. He would go out he sat alone smoking a solitary pipe on the and seek society. night of the ball. The pipe went out. He As he rose up from his chair a paper at threw it down in disgust. There was some his elbow fluttered down to the floor. He thing like contempt of himself in his mind. had forgotten this letter which the chaplain For at this moment, though he was jealous had put into his hand as he came from the and sore and wretched as he believed, he was mess-room. It was only another of Uncle by no means sure that he wanted to marry Jeremy's missives, which after long wanderthis girl. She was very fair to look at and / ing and delay had found him out.
“ I have heard nothing from you since | drawing back into her corner. your return to your regiment," the old man like the rest of them. wrote. “ Nor have you written to Mary” The captain passed on slowly up the (which was the name of the cousin down on room to the group at the head, the center the Jersey shore). “There are those who of which was the major's daughter. would do more than this to please me, and “Where have you been?” chirruped you will find it greatly to your disadvantage Miss Laud, who had a young lieutenant at if you will not do as much."
each elbow and was making eyes at a third So the old man threatened him at last! just behind her shoulder. “You don't deHe only laughed scornfully as he threw the serve to know that I saved a waltz for you letter aside. This affair with Uncle Jeremy till the evening was half over." which had so annoyed him a few weeks “And am I too late to claim it? I have since had not the weight of a feather upon been detained,” the captain said, making a him now. He tossed the letter into his bold plunge and telling a lie in sheer desdesk, but before it had left his hand he had peration. forgotten its contents. His thoughts had “Entirely too late. You should have sped to the ball, and he was trying to make come before, sir.” The girl could afford to up his mind to follow them. He had half play the tyrant to-night, with half a dozen engaged Miss Laud for the first waltz, but young men hanging about her. “We are she would not lack partners where her sex just going." was so sparsely represented. A strong "Perhaps Miss Bryce will be more indesire to stroll down to the Stubbs's for a dulgent,” he said, advancing to Claudia, half hour came over him—to look in upon who strove to appear unconscious and at this little girl and see if she would still ease as the gentlemen about her fell back hold her own in his imagination. It would at this address. not be treachery toward his friend. Weeks Poor Claudia would have stepped down had passed since he had been there alone. and out upon the floor with a happy heart Besides, he could talk of the boy. Might but for this unfortunate assertion of her he not in this way do him a service? Then friend which would make compliance appear he remembered the lieutenant to have said eager. Why need Kitty have said that that Mrs. Stubbs had partly promised to they were about to go home? A half hour take Blossom to the ball. He had hardly longer would make no difference, even given it a thought at the time in his eager though it were well on toward daylight. ness to hear what more there might be to Mrs. Bryce had already risen. Claudia rose tell of the boy's visit. Would the woman now and drew her lace shawl about her do so? Would she expose the girl to the neck. slights and sneers which he knew the well- “Yes, we are just going,” she said. If bred ladies at the post were capable of he would only persist, she would give way. bestowing? How they might hurt the Dear me! how gladly she would have given child! Almost before he knew it he was in way!—but no, he stepped back with a bow the ball-room.
and some half intelligible words of regret, He had fancied Blossom scored and and Mrs. Bryce and her party swept down doomed to sit in a corner. On the con- the room, and out. Their fine dresses trary, she came down the room at the touched Mrs. Stubbs's gown as they passed, moment of his entrance looking as fresh as but no one of them bestowed a glance upon the rose in her hair. He had come pre- her or upon the little figure with frightened pared to dare the sneers of the entire eyes by her side. The woman's face grew feminine portion of the garrison, if need be, dark as she turned to look after them. in her behalf, but it seemed there was no “ I'll be even with you yet," she muttered occasion for his services, and after a slight behind her closed teeth; but still she made greeting to the girl and her mother, whom no movement to go. she had joined, he passed on to the upper And now that the great lights had deend of the room. Poor Blossom bit her parted Blossom had no lack of satellites. lip and could hardly keep back her tears. Admiration and attention were turned to He had not noticed the half-extended hand her in a way that embarrassed and almost nor did he dream that the glow on her alarmed the child. The dancing still went face had been called up by the sight of his on though but feebly supported, and in figure in the door-way.
time to music that lagged and had lost “Curse his pride !" muttered the woman, I its spirit. One after another, the ladies
were taking their departure.
The men had occurred, but he had caught a glimpse straggling in from the supper-room sought of Blossom, white and tearful, behind her out and sued for a presentation to the mother's defiant form. sutler's pretty daughter. Leaning over her “I will take you to the dressing-room." they breathed bold compliments in her “By-Elyot,” said Captain Luttrell, ears—too strongly perfumed with wine “ what d’ye mean by your
interferto be acceptable. Mrs. Stubbs sat like a ence? I was just about to see these ladies sphinx, mute and unseeing. Or was the home myself.” woman flattered by this late notice of the “Stand out of the way, sir.” And thrustgirl who smiled though her lips trembled ing him aside with his elbow, the young and tears came into her eyes ? Lieutenant man sent the drunken captain of cavalry Orme, at a little distance, looked on, angry reeling to the floor, while he conducted and tempted to interfere.
Mrs. Stubbs and her daughter to the dress“Why doesn't she take her daughter ing-room. home ? " the boy said to himself, growing hot and cold by turns as the play went on.
CHAPTER XVI. “Good Heavens! What is the old woman thinking of ?” he thought, as Captain Lut
SKIRMISHES. trell swaggered toward them.
The music still rose and fell in volup- CAPTAIN LUTTRELL had forgotten his tuous cadence, but one after another the wrath by the next morning. He had fordancers fell off and slipped away.
gotten, indeed, much of what had occurred All at once the woman roused herself. toward the close of the evening before, and
"Eh! Blossom," she said, starting from was somewhat ashamed of the part he had her stupor as though she had been dream played as it was set before him by his friends, ing and gazing with suddenly awakened who perhaps exaggerated his misdemeanors eyes upon the group of men gathered about in order to hide their own. He blustered and them. 6. What's this? It's time we were swore, however, which was a very harmless going, child.”
way of venting his anger, vowing that nothSome of the gay young fellows took it up ing but the fact that he was to leave at with a hardly suppressed laugh, repeating midday with the troops ordered south, the girl's fanciful pet name. One boldly prevented his demanding an apology from begged the privilege of bringing her shawl. Captain Elyot. As it was he should be Another offered to see her safely home. obliged to put aside personal affairs for the
“Stand out of the way, will you ?." hic time. He asserted, with a great show of coughed Capain Luttrell, elbowing himself indignation, that he had only intended to be to the front. “ She'd a d- sight rather civil to the widow and her daughter, and an old friend 'd serve her. Hadn't you, my if the former chose to resent his well-meant dear?” leaning down toward Blossom. offer of service it was no fault of his, “and
“Keep a civil tongue in your head or no reason, by — why Elyot should init'll be the worse for ye,” retorted the widow, terfere.” It was at this point in discussing angrily rising up. There was something the affair that he allowed himself to be almost menacing in the movement and the soothed and suffered his anger to cool, after little group fell back.
a list of oaths more curious than intellibut she's a Tartar!” exclaimed gible. one of the visitors in a low voice.
The story of the little encounter spread “She's Tar-t'rus itself,” said Captain through the fort and even entered the Luttrell with a drunken laugh.
major's house before breakfast the next At this instant Captain Elyot came out morning. from the supper-room with one of the “Dear me! Have you heard the news ?” officers.
cried Miss Laud, bursting into the parlor “What's this ? " said his companion; but where that meal was being set out, with her Captain Elyot did not wait to respond. hair in a most unbecoming twist and with He pushed straight through the little crowd a wrapper thrown hastily about her form. --for everybody in the room had started Jinny had brought the story, with a jug forward at Mrs. Stubbs's upraised voice. of hot water, that very moment to her bed
“So you are going? Allow me," and he room, having but just received it from stepped directly before Captain Luttrell. Sergeant McDougal, who had dropped into
He only partially comprehended what the kitchen for a moment's gossip.