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before they reached the ridge
· Bide a
bide a bit,' whence they usually descried the implored M‘Nab, forgetting his back-creek channel. The waters English, and going back to an are out such a distance that we shall earlier vernacular in the depth of not be able to get near the banks his earnestness. “The dog's worth of this infernal anabranch, much an hour of time and a dozen men less throw a bridge over any part to us. Help! Help! here, boy, of it. There is a mile of water on here!' it now, from end to end. The “ He
out the canine sumsheep must take their chance, and mons in the long-drawn cry peculiar that only chance is that the river to drovers when seeking to signal may not rise as high as Stangrove their whereabouts to their faithful says he has known it.'
allies. Jack put his fingers to his I deserve to be overseer of a mouth and emitted a whistle of thick run with bad shepherds all such remarkable volume and shrillmy life,' groaned M‘Nab, with an
ness that M‘Nab confessed his amount of sincerity in his abjectly admiration. humiliated voice so ludicrous that 6. That will fetch him, sir, if Jack, in that hour of misery, could he's anywhere within mile. scarcely refrain from smiling. Dash'd if that isn't him coming • But let us gallop down to the
See him following our outlet; it may not have got that tracks. Here, boy ! far yet.'
“As he spoke a magnificent They rode hard for the point, black and tan colley raised his
miles down, where the head from the trail and dashed up treacherous offshoot re-entered the to Jack's side, with every expresWarroo. It sometimes happens sion of delight and proud success. that, owing to the sinuosities of “ In the hour of sore need this the watercourses of the interior, was the friend and ally, most horsemen at speed can outstrip the appropriately named, who appeared advancing flood-wave, and give on the scene. With a wave of the timely notice to the dwellers on the hand from Jack, he started off, banks. Such faint hope had they. skirting the nearest body of sheep. By cutting across long detours or The well-trained animal, racing bends, and riding harder than was round the timid creatures, turned at all consistent with safety to their them towards the outlet, and clover-fed horses, they reached the followed the master for further outlet. Joy of joys, it was as dry orders. This process was repeated, as a bone.'
aided by M Nab, until they had “Now,' said M‘Nab, driving his gone as far from the outlet of the horse recklessly down into the hard- creek as they dared to do, with any baked channel,' if we can only find chance of crossing before the flood most of the sheep in this end of came down. the paddock we may beat bad luck • We must rattle them in now,' and the water yet. Did the dog said M‘Nab. “I'm afraid there is come, I wonder? The Lord send
a large lot higher up, but there's he did. I saw him with us the five or six thousand of these, and first time we pulled up.'
we must make the best of it.' “«I'm afraid not,' said Jack; “As the lots of sheep coalesced on we've ridden too hard for any their homeward route, the difficulty mortal dog to keep up with us, of driving and the value of the dog though Help will come
grew more apparent. Large mobs tracks if he thinks he's wanted.' or flocks of sheep are, like all crowds, difficult to move and con- There was a hungry, surging rush, duct. By themselves it would and in another minute the creek have been a slow process; but the was level with the river, and the dog, gathering from the words and place where the six thousand sheep actions of his superiors that some
had crossed dryshod (and sheep thing out of the common was being 'resemble cats very closely in their transacted, flew round the great indisposition to wet their feet) was flock, barking, biting, rushing,
biting, rushing, ten feet under water, and would worrying-driving, in fact, like ten have floated a river steamer." dogs in one. By dint of the Drought, that other terrible wildest exertion on the part of the feature of Australian climate, is a men, and the tireless efforts of the more depressing form of excitedog, the great flock of sheep, nearly ment. It can scarcely be pleasant six thousand, was forced up to the when men and cattle alike are anabranch. Here the leaders un- starved ; when the weak sheep hesitatingly took the as yet dry, tumble into the water holes, and unmoistened channel, and in a long have to be pulled out again ; when string commenced to pour up the the starved cows stand in the nearly opposite bank.
dry ponds eating the remains of “Give it them at the tail, sir,' the water lilies. A season like shouted M‘Nab, who was at the this compelled the hero of “Ups lead, ‘go it, Help, good dog—there and Downs" to sell his sheep run. is not a moment to lose. By In describing the sale to the new George, there comes the flood. purchaser, Mr. Bagemall, some Eat 'em up, old man !--give it 'em, notion is given of the quick intelligood dog!
gence necessary for such business : “There was fortunately one more “The next morning the counting bend for the flood water to follow began in earnest. A couple of round before it reached the outlet. thousand four-tooth wethers had During the short respite Jack and been put in the drafting yard, for M‘Nab worked at their task till
some reason or other, and with this the perspiration poured down their lot they made a commencement. faces — till their voices became Now, except to be initiated, this hoarse with shouting, and well-nigh counting of sheep is a bewildering, failed. Horses and men, dog and all but impossible matter. The sheep, were all in a state of exhaus- hurdle or gate, as the case may be, tion and despair when the last mob is partially opened and egress perwas ascending the clay bank. mitted in a degree proportioned to
“Two minutes more, and we the supposed talent of the enumeshould have been too late,' said rator. If he be slow, inexperienced, M‘Nab, in a hoarse whisper; ' look and therefore diffident, a small there!'
opening suffices through which “ As he spoke, a wall of water only a couple of sheep can run at a several feet in height, and the full time. Then he begins--two, four, breadth of the widest part of the six, eight, and so on, up to twenty. channel, came foaming down, bear- After he gets well into his tens he ing logs, trees, portions of huts probably makes some slight misand hay stacks-every kind of calculation, and while he is mendebris — upon its eddying tide. tally debating whether forty-two or The tired dog crawled up the bank fifty-two be right, three sheep rush and lay down in the grass. A few out together, the additional one in of the last sheep turned and stared wild eagerness jumping on to the stolidly at the close wild water. back of one of the others, and then sprawling, feet up, in front of the bined with the inspection of the gate. The unhappy wight says whole run, was concluded.” sixty' to himself, and looking doubtfully at the continuous stream Etna. A History of the Mounof animals, falls hopelessly in tain and of its Eruptions. By arrear and gives up. In such a G. F. Rodwell. C. Kegan Paul case the sheep have to be re-yarded, and Co. London. or he has to trust implicitly to the In Edgar Allan Poe's clever honour of the person in charge, sketch which he calls “The Thouwho widens the gate, lets the sheep sand-and-Second Tale of Scheherarush out higgledy-piggledy, as it zade” the lady in question relates seems to the tyro, and keeps calling to her lord the king the full conout hundred hundred' with clusion of the history of Sindbad. wonderful and almost suspicious The king finds it easy to believe in rapidity. Yet, in such a
a continent upheld by a skyblue there will rarely be one sheep cow, having been taught that the wrong, more or less, in five thou- earth is supported in that fashion. sand. Thus, when arrived at the But the description of various realiyard, M‘Nab looked inquiringly at ties, either natural wonders or the the stranger, and took hold of one results of man's invention, prove end of the hurdle.
quite too much for his credulity. ". Throw it down and let 'em Among other things he greets with rip,' said Mr. Bagemall. • You scorn an account of an eruption of and I will count, and Mr. Redgrave Hecla. The facts are too monstrous will perhaps keep tally."
for him to accept; and to those of Keeping tally, it may be ex- us who have not, like Mr. Glad. plained, is the notation of the stone (who seems bent upon doing hundreds, by pencil or notched everything), found time and opporstick, the counter being supposed tunity to ascend a volcano, the only to concern himself with the description of one must ever read units and tens.
delightfully like a romance. Pindar “ M‘Nab, who was an unrivalled -the first ancient writer who counter, relaxed his features, as describes Etna-conceives it to be recognising a kindred spirit, and, the prison-house of the giant Ence
the sheep came tearing and ladus or Typhon ; and his language tumbling out, after the fashion of brings before us a vivid picture of strong, hearty, paddocked wethers, the outward form of this terrible he placed his hands in his pockets dungeon.
. and reeled off the hundreds, as did "He (Typhon) is fast bound by Mr. Bagemall, in no time. The a pillar of sky, even by snowy operation was
They Etna, nursing the whole year's agreed in the odd number to a length her dazzling snow, wheresheep. And M‘Nab further re- out pure springs of unapproachable marked that Mr. Bagemall was. fire are vomited from the inmost one of those gifted persons who, depths. In the daytime the lavaby a successive motion of the fingers streams pour forth a lurid rush of of both hands, was enabled (quite smoke; but in the darkness a red as a matter of form) to check the rolling flame sweepeth rocks with tally-keeper as well. Paddock
uproar to the wide sea. . That after paddock was duly mustered, dragon-thing (Typhon) it is that driven through their respective maketh issue from beneath the gates, and counted back. In a terrible fiery flood.” Æschylus, couple of days the operation, com- too, pictures Typhon lying prone
and bound beneath the roots of ance and surroundings; he has ancient Etna. Virgil's fine descrip- made a careful record of the eruption is well known. Many other tions, according to such different early writers speak of the mountain, accounts as have been published and, while the poets “invested it since 525 B.c. up to 1874; and he with supernatural attributes and has devoted a chapter to the geology made it the prison-house of a and mineralogy of the mountain. chained giant and the workshop of His volume is the first work in the a swart god,” Lucretius endea. English language devoted to the voured to show that the phenomena history of the famous volcano; and were obedient to natural laws. the author has endeavoured, cerBut it is small wonder that, before tainly, to make his history comthe days of science, of investigation, plete, for he commences with the and accurate observation, the abode of the Cyclops, and ends mountain should indeed have been with a notice of two maps of the supposed the dwelling of some mountain which were exhibited in monstrous supernatural being. Its the Paris Exhibition. conduct is that of a capricious This terrible mountain which monarch. So generous is it of will yawn suddenly beneath your benefits, so lavish of gifts, that the feet, and in which a fissure of people crowd around it to take the twelve miles long, emitting a bright luxury it offers; but they do so light, has been known to open, has at the risk of destruction at yet taken care of some of its any moment. Like a very auto- favourite offspring. It bears upon crat, the demon of the mountain its side some of the largest and will
grow angry on a sudden ; and, oldest trees in the world; one of turning upon the crowds who live these monarchs of the mountain upon his bounty, will command being 25 feet in diameter and that they shall die; and, sending probably more than 1000 years old. forth his fiery vomit to fulfil his It is small wonder that the toil and decree, his kingdom is laid desolate danger of the ascent of Etna is before he can repent. Yet his life not sufficient to deter travellers is so full and generous that, his from endeavouring to reach the anger once cooled, he scatters summit. In the night the vault of gifts again, and soon his kingdom heaven seems near and flat, filled is re-populated. Perhaps the most with innumerable stars, some of picturesque myth is that in which which appear to hang down from Etna is associated with the sky, while the Milky-way is as Cyclops. Mr. Symonds considers a path of fire. Then comes the that the one-eyed giant Poly- marvel of sunrise, which baffles the phemus was Etna itself with its descriptive powers of all who have one great crater, while the Cyclops seen it; and then, possibly, by
many minor cones. The good fortune, may be seen the picture appeals strangely to the shadow of the mountain, apparimagination—the fierce eye, full of ently suspended in space above the fire, gazing eternally and defiantly island a hundred miles away. As into the vault of heaven.
the sun rises this shadow sinks upon Mr. Rodwell will please most the island and gradually retires to readers, as he has gathered to
the base of the mountain. gether the legendary history of Altogether, Mr. Rodwell has Etna, and placed beside that a de- produced a very pleasant and tailed picture of its actual appear