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cially when we reflect on the terra incognita of Africa, America, and even Asia, of New Holland, and the islands of the Pacific Ocean, without adverting to the new, and almost daily discoveries and wonders of fossil osteology.

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70 URSINE HOWLING MONKEY, (Simia Ursina.)

In speaking of Transatlantic animals, we will commence with the Alouattes, or Howling Monkeys, the Baboons of the new world. They approximate in size and fierceness to their African and Asiatic brethren, and are, perhaps, still less amenable to the discipline of man. They are dis

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tinguished for wildness and ferocity, and the bony structure of their throats, which gives them such tremendous power of sound, and adds in no small degree to the terror which they are calculated to inspire. He who visits their deep primeval haunts often encounters whole troops of these nightly wanderers, who make the forests resound with their dreadful yells. They love darkness, and rarely venture out when the sun shines ; nor do they go alone, but in strong detachments; and the moment they discover an intruder, it is not the voice of either one or two that calls forth the echoes. The whole troop howls fearfully, and in concert.

Humboldt, the celebrated transatlantic traveller, saw, for the first time, these formidable inhabitants of her ancient forests, after landing at Cumana, in the province of New Andalusia. He fell in with them during an excursion to the mountains of Cocola, and the caverns of Guacharo, the resort of innumerable birds. Although the convent of Caripe, where he rested, is situated in a valley at an elevation of more than four thousand toises above the level of the sea, and was in consequence very cold, yet the surrounding woods abounded with Howling Monkeys, whose melancholy voices were heard at the distance of two miles, especially when the nights were clear.

Certain tribes of these strange foresters are without a thumb on the fore-paw; and two species are known which have this appendage in a rudimental state.

These animals are evidently designed to live on trees, for nothing can be more embarrassing than

HOWLING MONKEY.

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their movement on the ground. Unable to bound or leap, they rather drag themselves along than walk, by advancing their long legs and arms alternately, and endeavouring to preserve an equilibrium by clinging with their tails to the trunks of trees. But in proportion to their slow and embarrassed movements on the earth, so are they alert and active in the forests, where they are often seen to traverse even the smallest branches with inconceivable rapidity. They dart from one tree to another, even when separated by a considerable interval, and as they subsist principally on fruit, they rarely have occasion to descend from their places of resort, except in questof water.

There is much kindliness in their disposition, for they live in small communities, and assist one the other. Should any traveller intrude on their domain, in places where they have not learned to fear the face of man, they pelt him with stones and branches. Doubtless they act thus every time they see a new object, but the instinct by which they are excited rather impels them to menace and disturb, than to attack the intruder in close combat. They act as if they wished to repress the audacity of him who would penetrate through the intricacies of their green-wood shades, and probably, with animals in general, this method of proceeding answers the desired purpose. But should the intruder be more formidable than they at first supposed, should he, regardless of their ancient prerogative, fire at, or otherwise injure, an Howling Monkey, the rest betake themselves to the topmost boughs, and make the woods resound with lamentable cries. The

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HOWLING MONKEY.

wounded animal, meanwhile, presses his finger on the injured part, and looks steadily at the flowing of the blood, until, through weakness, he loses all consciousness of suffering, and expires. He then slips off the branch on which he sat, but generally remains suspended by the tail, which in times of danger, is coiled round the nearest bough.

These animals are easily domesticated. The regard which they evince one towards the other is soon transferred to their masters, and caresses and good treatment render them remarkably affectionate. It is even said that they have been taught to perform domestic offices.

The Large Red Monkey, the S. siniculus of Demerara, is also a tremendous howler. Nothing can be more dreadful than his nocturnal yells. The traveller who, lying in his hammock, amid gloomy immeasurable wilds, hears him at intervals from eleven o'clock till daybreak, might suppose that innumerable wild beasts were collecting for the work of

carnage. Now, he seems to listen to the terrific roar of the Jaguar, as he springs on his prey; now, the sound changes to his deep-toned growlings, as he is pressed on all sides by superior force; and now, you hear his last dying moan, beneath a mortal wound. Some naturalists suppose that these awful sounds, which resemble those of enraged or suffering wild beasts, proceed from a number of Red Monkeys, when howling in concert. But an individual readily produces this variety of intonations, aided by the peculiar structure of the trachea. In dark and cloudy weather, and just before a squall of wind or rain, this monkey will often howl in the

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day-time; and if you advance cautiously beneath the high tufted tree where he is sitting, you may observe the ease with which he produces those discordant sounds.

Red Monkeys abound in the wildest parts of Demerara. They may be seen on the topmost boughs of the towering mora, when it rises, bleached with age, above the young green foliage of the forest, or garnished with parasitic leaves and verdure. The wild fig-tree, large as a common apple-tree, often rears itself from one of the thick branches, and when its fruit is ripe, innumerable birds resort thither, as to an annual banquet. The wind, that random sower, first planted it, in some hole made by the woodpecker, and there, nested in the wood, and nourished by the sap of the parent tree, it grew rapidly, till, emerging forth into full bearing, it also contributed a portion of its own juices to the growth of different kinds of vine, the seeds of which had been likewise deposited in its branches. These quickly vegetated and bore fruit in abundance. Then the stately mora, unequal to support the usurpation of the fig-tree, faded beneath the burden; the fig-tree also, having no root of her own, and being unable to draw nourishment from the sapless trunk, gradually declined, till her usurping progeny of vines, receiving no further aid, failed and withered in their turn. Thus they stand like pyramids of dried boughs, in striking contrast to the beauty and luxuriance of the forest. Yet the Toucan often perches on them; Parrots, too, and the Red Monkey, gambol among the dry branches. A looker. on might almost fancy that the one delighted to con

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