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near the ground, and soon reach the deer, and pounce at its head one after another, sometimes with such violence as to knock it over. At any rate, they confuse it so much that it is obliged to slacken its speed, which enables the dogs and horsemen to come up and destroy it. Sir John says, that what surprised him most in this chace was the manner in which the dogs and hawks acted together, and seemed to look to each other for aid. This was, of course, the effect of long and skilful training. The antelope is supposed to be the fleetest animal on earth, and the rapidity of its first burst off is amazing. It is generally taken before it has run four miles, and often before it has run half so far. It is the female that is chiefly taken in this way, as the people do not like to let fly their hawks at the male, as, in pouncing at his head, they are apt to run themselves through upon its sharp horns.
J. And serve them right, too!
U. O. Yes; if they were acting from their own free-will, and not as man instructs and commands them to do.
J. But they ought not to do wrong, even when man tells them to do it. U. O, That is a very good rule for us, who are able to distinguish between right and wrong. But I very much doubt whether a hawk ever thinks it wrong to attack an antelope. The mode of hunting I have described is only used, I believe, in the south of Persia. In the interior another method is more common, which somewhat resembles the way of hunting the wild ass. Gentlemen go forth to the sport leading their greyhounds by a silken leash, which passes through a collar, and is ready to be slipped the moment the huntsman chooses. The well-trained dog runs along by the side of the horse, and keeps clear of him on every kind of road. When a herd of antelopes is seen, the huntsmen consult together, and determine to what point it will be best to drive them. They then disperse, and while some drive the herd in the intended direction, those who are with the dogs place themselves along the same line, at the distance of about a mile from each other. One of the dogs is then let loose at the herd. He singles out one of them; and the horsemen, who are stationed with the dogs along the line, let loose one dog after another at the antelope as he passes, until at last he becomes fatigued, and is easily overcome. It is generally the third or fourth
dog that kills him : sometimes, but very rarely, the second does it; but it occasionally happens, when the ground is favourable, that the animal escapes altogether.
Another method, used chiefly in royal hunting parties on a large scale, is 'to surround a district with a large number of men, who, by drums and other noises, drive all the antelopes and wild goats into a valley, where a continual firing is kept up on them from behind the rocks, and they are pursued in every direction, until vast numbers are destroyed. A hunt of this sort seems to be represented, with the difference of arrows instead of guns, in the ancient sculptures upon the rocks near the town of Kermanshah. In this representation the deer seem to be hunted into an inclosure, where the king, with bands of music, is waiting, and where they are destroyed before him.
Hyænas, wolves, jackals, and foxes are very abundant in Persia. The latter are sometimes found of a silver-grey colour, and sometimes even white. The wolves are very ferocious; and when emboldened by extreme hunger will attack men--which, indeed, they do in other countries. Hares also are conimon enough, and are rather
less timid than in England, as they are not so much persecuted by man. The Persians do not consider them as game; they think the animal unclean, and will not eat its flesh, although their neighbours the Turks, and even the wandering shepherds who inhabit Persia, have no objection to it.
There is only one other animal common in Persia, of which I need speak particularly. This is the jerboa, a little animal about the size of a rat, which is very common in the Persian plains and deserts. Its colour is generally pale brown above, and white underneath. It has very long feet, each with three toes. The tail, too, is long, with a feather-like tip. These little creatures so much resemble birds, in their postures and hopping motions, that some naturalists place them among those animals which seem to stand between birds and quadrupeds. The animal is generally seen reared up, like a kangaroo, upon its hind legs, or leaping to a considerable distance; and if for a moment or two it sets its fore feet to the ground, it quickly returns to the former posture, as if it were more natural to it. In feeding, the jerboa usually carries to its mouth with the fore paws the ears of corn and other vegetable substances on which it feeds. Although it usually moves about by hops, yet when escaping from anything that alarms it the jerboa seems almost to lay himself flat upon the ground, and so to run along. The Persian jerboas do not live in troops as those of Egypt are said to do. Each has his own hole, to which he hastily withdraws on the least alarm, and, in consequence of their great wariness and agility, I believe it is not possible to take them, either by hunting or surprise, in the day. When closely pressed by dogs or men, they escape with the utmost ease, by springing to an amazing height over the heads of their pursuers; and after having turned topsy-turvy two or three times in the air, they come down again upon their feet at the distance of several yards from the spot whence they ascended.
H. But cannot the people take theni at all, then ?
U. O. Oh, yes! The people are very fond of their flesh, and tax their ingenuity to procure them. One method is to pour water down their holes, on which they instantly jump out, and are generally taken. Another common method is to expose the glare of a lantern to them ; when, instead of running away or taking to their