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becoming white from sudden fear. In the Proc. Zool. Soc., 1835, p. 54, is the following note, extracted by sir Robert Heron, Bart., from his journal. “1821-2. A black Poland cock belonging to my friend and neighbour, Mr. Kendall, of Barnsley, was seized last winter, near the house, by a fox, but his screams being heard by the servants, he was rescued, desperately wounded, with the loss of half his feathers. In time the remainder of his feathers came off, and he is now become perfectly white. This seems to have some relation to the human hair becoming white at once from fear."

THE PEA-FOWL.

The pea-fowl (Pavo cristatus) is a native of India, Ceylon, etc., inhabiting the dense forests, where it perches on the highest trees often above the range of gun-shot; and the sportsman frequently hears its shrill, harsh, and startling cry, while the bird remains invisible, or launching itself into the air, floats in majestic buoyancy hopelessly high above his head. When on the ground, the pea-fowl keeps much amidst thick jungle, and if suddenly surprised, is out of sight in a moment. Besides man, many are the enemies of this beautiful bird, among which, the tiger, the leopard, and others of the feline race, are to be enumerated. In Ceylon, the natives assert that it often falls a prey to the slender loris, (loris gracilis) a small nocturnal animal of the Lemurine family, of arboreal habits. While the pea-fowl sleeps on its perch, its insidious foe creeps slowly and noiselessly towards it, and suddenly seizes it by the neck, which it clutches with such tenacity that the bird, fiuttering in the agony of strangulation, drops from its perch to the ground, with its foe still clinging. Here it soon expires, and the loris devours its brains, leaving the rest of the body untouched. Colonel Sykes states that “the wild pea-fowl is abundant in the dense woods of the Ghauts : it is readily domesticated, and

many Hindoo temples in the Dukhun have considerable flocks of them. On a comparison with the bird domesticated in Europe, the. latter is found both male and female to be absolutely identical with the wild bird of India.' In the passes of the Jungletery, colonel Williamson found these birds in great numbers, and the woods were strewed with

their beautiful plumes, and on one occasion he saw twelve or fifteen hundred together, feeding upon the bloom of mustard, cultivated in patches, and which attracted them. He states that when numbers are thus collected in the jungle it is not easy to get a shot at them, as they run extremely fast, and even a dog can scarcely make them take wing.

It is evident that the pea-fowl was domesticated at a very early period, for as we have previously observed, it was brought over for Solomon, and, doubtless, constituted one of the ornaments of his pleasure gardens. It was introduced into ancient Greece at a date far anterior to the time of Aristotle, who speaks of it as being familiarly known, and it is mentioned by Aristophanes.

The Romans were well acquainted with this gorgeous bird, the bird of Juno, as the poets called it, feigning that with the eyes of Argos she adorned its tail and thus bestudded it with gems-"et gemmis caudam stellantibus implet."

The beauty of the peacock, however, did not insure its safety; numbers were killed to swell the luxurious entertainments of the wealthy, insomuch that one of the poets said,

Mi iraris quolies gemmanles explicat alas,
Et potes hunc savo tradere, dure ccquo."

You are filled with admiration as often as it unfolds its gemmed

plumes; And can you, hard-hearted, deliver this to the merciless cook ?

It is very

The pea-fowl figured in the feasts of Hortensius and other sensualists; but how lavishly must it have been slaughtered for the emperor Vetellius, one of whose favourite dishes, called the buckler of Minerva, was prepared with the livers of scare,* the tongues of flamingoes, and the brains of peacocks. probable that we owe the introduction of the pea-fowl into our island to the Romans. Its name in Saxon

in Belgic pauw, in Teutonic pfau, and in French paon, are evidently mere corruptions of the Latin pavo (pronounced most likely pawo) itself a corruption of the Greek taóv (taðn). Like the

pawa,

* A fish, scarus crcticus. “ The Archipelago (between Greece and Asia Minor) says Cuvier, possesses a species (of scarus) of a blue or red colour according to the season. It is the scarus creticus of Aldrovandus, and after fresh researches appears to me to be the true scarus so celebrated among the ancients, and which under the reign of Claudius, Elipertius Optatus, commander of a Roman fleet, went to procure in Greece, in order to naturalize it in seas of Italy. It is eaten at the present time in Greece, its intestines being seasoned.”

Romans, our rude forefathers highly esteemed the peacock as a delicacy of the table ; after being dressed, it was served up with the plumes attached and expanded, and thus swelled the pomp of the entertainment. Before the peacock and the ladies did the knight in the olden time utter his solemn vow.

The flesh of the young pea-fowl is still held in estimation, but that of old birds is tough and dry.

The habits of the pea-fowl in a state of domestication are well known; it is fond of wandering about, and is unfitted for the ordinary poultry yard ; it delights to roam over extensive lawns, and about parks, and shrubberies, walking along with stately steps, its long plumes sweeping gracefully and constituting a train of inimitable splendour. Often it stops, and raising up its train expands its radiant colours to the sun, and looks proudly around, as if conscious of superlative beauty. Who has not gazed with admiration on the spectacle thus presented ? who, contemplating the bird thus adorned by the great Creator, as if to delight the eyes of man, has not been ready to exclaim, surely no monarch

c3

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