Puslapio vaizdai

lowed him for several days, and on the previous afternoon had succeeded in outflanking him. All he could do was to send the greater part of the train on to Propoisk with a guard, and to prepare to fight. A fierce battle ensued, which lasted the whole afternoon, with no actual result, for both sides maintained their ground. When night came on, Lewenhaupt buried his artillery, burned the wagons which were still with him, used the horses for mounting his infantry, and pressed on to Propoisk. The trains sent there had got into confusion, and as it was impossible to get them over the Sozh, on account of the destruction of the bridges, they also were burned, and Lewenhaupt was obliged, with the remains of his army, to follow the river until he found a ford. He finally succeeded in joining a portion of Charles's army, on the 21st of October. The Russians, who had fourteen thousand men engaged, lost one thousand one hundred killed and two thousand eight hundred and fifty-six wounded, while Lewenhaupt succeeded in bringing to Charles only about six thousand men, out of the eleven thousand with which he started from Riga. Over three thousand had been taken prisoners; the remainder had died or had deserted; the stores, medicine, and ammunition, of which the Swedes had so much need, had been lost, and forty-four standards and seventeen guns had been captured. Charles had never appreciated rightly the military qualities of Lewenhaupt, and although he received him. well on his arrival, he soon manifested a coolness toward him, gave him no command, and did not again during the campaign make use of his great experience. Perhaps the greatest effect of this battle was that it dispirited the Swedes and destroyed their self-confidence, and raised the hopes of the Russians, who believed that Lewenhaupt had a force superior in numbers to their own. Peter wrote: "This victory may be called our first, for we have never had such a one over regular troops. In very truth, it was the cause of all the subsequent good fortune of Russia, for it was the first proof of our soldiers, and it put hearts into our men, and was the mother of the battle of Poltava."

To add to their misfortunes, the Swedes met with a great disaster in the north. Charles had relied on his great fleet to destroy that of the Tsar, and aid General Lybecker in an attack on Cronstadt and

St. Petersburg. But the fleet could not be equipped, as, after raising and supplying the forces of Lybecker and Lewenhaupt, there was no money in the Swedish treasury. Only a small division, under Admiral Anckarstjerna, took the sea, but even that was detained by contrary winds at Reval, and was too weak to attack the Russian fleet, which was master of the Finnish Gulf. Admiral Count Botsis captured many small Swedish vessels, and landed a force of troops in Finland, who took Borgo and burned the vessels in the port. Lybecker was a man of very moderate capacities who, for fully twenty years, had served as lieutenant. His personal bravery at the battle of Klissow, in 1703, pleased Charles, who advanced him far beyond his deserts, until he became major-general, baron, and commander-in-chief of the whole army in Finland. This army, consisting of fourteen thousand men, was not ready to take the field until the early part of September, and even then, though well armed and equipped, had provisions only for some days. In spite of strong opposition, he succeeded in crossing the Neva, but did not dare attack St. Petersburg, which was too well fortified. Although it was only a week since he had left Viborg, his provisions were exhausted, and his troops were obliged to kill their horses for food. Partly through the misconduct of his own men, he was repulsed from the little fort of Ingris-Amund, and he then advanced aimlessly into Ingria, which the Russians laid waste before him, and finally succeeded in taking the small fortress of Koporie, where he found some provisions. Deceived by a false letter of Apráxin, wherein was mention of forty thousand men for the defense of St. Petersburg, Lybecker made for the sea-coast near Narva, and persuaded Admiral Anckarstjerna to take his troops across to Viborg. He was forced to kill or hamstring six thousand horses, to burn his heavy baggage, and, on account of bad weather, to leave behind about nine hundred men, who defended themselves valiantly until nearly all were killed. The total loss of the Swedes in this undertaking was over three thousand men, beside the horses and war material.

But just when the news of this victory, together with the defeat of Lewenhaupt at Liesna, had inspired Peter with the greatest confidence, he suddenly heard of the treachery of Mazeppa.

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'Round his head, like a halo there, luminous hung.
Line after line; ay, whole platoons,
Struck dead in their saddles, of brave dragoons
By the maddened horses were onward borne
And into the vortex flung, trampled and torn;
As Keenan fought with his men, side by side.

So they rode, till there were no more to ride.

But over them, lying there, shattered and mute,
What deep echo rolls?-'Tis a death-salute
From the cannon in place; for, heroes, you braved
Your fate not in vain: the army was saved!

Over them now-year following year-
Over their graves, the pine-cones fall,
And the whip-poor-will chants his specter-call;
But they stir not again: they raise no cheer:
They have ceased. But their glory shall never cease,
Nor their light be quenched in the light of peace.
The rush of their charge is resounding still
That saved the army at Chancellorsville.


WHEN I first saw the little creature whose name stands at the head of this article, he was rather a melancholy object to behold. Not more than a month or six weeks old, he sat on the finger of the boy who had picked him up from the gravel-walk-too young to know fear, and, it seemed to us, too young to take food from anything but the maternal bill. We thought he would probably live only a few hours. But we put him in a cage, and began to feed him with hardboiled egg mixed with cracker from the point of a steel pen-the nearest in resemblance to a bird's bill of my possessions. He took it very nicely, thrived wonderfully on it, and from the first displayed unusual intelligence; in the course of a few days he showed pleasure when I came to the cage, as young birds do at the approach of the mother, by fluttering his very scanty feathers. At first we were obliged to cover the lower part of the cage with Swiss muslin, as he was so very small that he could easily get out between the wires, and as yet could not fly; but he grew fast, and in the autumn, by the time we were ready to keep doors and windows shut, he was allowed the range of the whole upper part of the house, in general, however, confining himself to my own sleeping-room, and never voluntarily going down-stairs, although he could have done so at any time.

For the first few months, even when fully fledged, he appeared only as a rather common looking, little greenish-brown bird, with dark bars on his wings. I searched the ornithologies in vain to discover his name and species, and, also, showed him to various persons pretty well acquainted with the natural history of the State, with the same purpose, but without success-nobody could "place" Fritz, and I had almost made up my mind that he was a small and rather a dingy canary, when about the middle of the winter his plumage began to change, and he came out in the brilliant lemon-color and black of the American goldfinch.

But no canary that I ever saw could equal Fritz in sprightliness, intelligence, and affection. To say that he was tame would give no idea of his perfect friendliness and familiarity. His cage he regarded simply as a dining and sleeping room, and seldom went into it in the day-time except for the

purpose of eating. At the same time he had no objection to it, and I could put him in it at any time when it was convenient to do so. He lived almost exclusively on hemp-seed, which agreed with him perfectly; he was, also, extremely fond of other small seeds, like plantain, and particularly of fresh groundsel. When he saw us come in with a handful of this, he would fly across the room to get it, with cries of joy, and, siting on our hands, eagerly shell out and eat the little white seeds. In winter, when such green food could not be procured, he satisfied himself with the leaves of the various plants which we kept in the room, and nearly ate up two or three small geraniums.

Although Fritz never went to roost in his cage, having a great objection to doing so, I always put him into it for the night, and when morning came he was most wellbehaved, comporting himself more like a human being than a bird, and, instead of rousing us with shrill singing at dawn, never uttering a sound till we rose, when he greeted us at once with a gay chirrup, and was ready to come out and assist at the toilets of my sister and myself. During the whole operation of dressing he was a constant source of amusement, and, I may add, a considerable hindrance. While we were at the wash-stand he sat on the gas-fixture close by, chattering, singing, scolding, and making little darts at the towel, which he regarded with peculiar animosity. I often had considerable difficulty in getting through with brushing my teeth, owing to the fact that Fritz preferred that time and the tumbler of water for his own morning bath, and would sit on the edge, making a great fuss, shaking his wings, splashing the water about, and ducking his head in, but never quite venturing to plunge in on account of the depth. I often tried him with a saucer, but in vain-he never would take a bath in anything but that glass of water. He would, however, allow my sister to dip him into the wash-basin, when the water was quite deep, without showing any fear. While we arranged our hair, he divided his attentions between us, flying from one toilettable to the other, sometimes sitting on our heads, sometimes swinging head downward from my loose braids of hair, or flying with rapid scolding and chattering at the hair

brush, which he disliked as much as he did the towel.


During the day he was very busy, every minute being actively employed in something. When I wrote, he sat on the handle of the pen, apparently enjoying the motion, now and then running down to the pen-point to taste the ink, or traveling across the still undried page, trying to pick off the words, to the great detriment of the letter or article; or, again, attempting to drink out of the inkstand. When I was reading, he delighted to sit on the edge of the book, tugging away with his small beak at the leaves, tearing off little bits and throwing them away. It was really impossible to read a book of any value in the same room with him, and I was often obliged either to shut him up in the cage, or to lay down my book and give up to the dear little torment. It was useless to drive him away; he only scolded, evidently feeling himself very much aggrieved and interfered with, and was back again the next minute.

In sewing or knitting he was always greatly interested. Perched close to the needle, he picked at the stitches, or raveled out the yarn, at the imminent risk of having his eyes put out. He also had more than one hair-breadth escape from having his legs cut off by the scissors. He enjoyed sitting on the arm of the sewing-machine while it was in motion, and probably regarded it as horseback exercise, which it must very much have resembled.

He very rarely descended to the floor, or hopped on the carpet, which was lucky for him, as he would almost inevitably have been stepped on and crushed. Yet the idea that anybody or anything could hurt him never entered his head. He was absolutely without fear. Sometimes we missed him, and found him in the queerest places-on my shoulders, where if I had suddenly leaned back in my chair he would have been instantly killed; or hanging to my skirt, upside down. While sitting and not thinking of him, I would suddenly be reminded of him by feeling a little warm bill thrust coaxingly into my mouth, in expectation of the seed I was accustomed to give him. He could stand on my shoulder, or just under my chin, and reach up to my lips. If he was disappointed in finding a seed waiting for him, he would give a little mischievous nip.

Considering that he had an insane penchant for sitting on the tops of doors, his escape from a violent death was quite wonderful, and

only accounted for by the fact that everybody was very thoughtful about him. The greatest peril he passed through was in being overwhelmed by an avalanche of bedclothes, which one of us carelessly threw over him on getting up from an afternoon nap. He was buried under them for full five minutes, and meanwhile we were looking everywhere for him, and wondering where he could be. When at length he was released, he did not seem at all disconcerted, but flew up to his favorite perch on the gas-fixture, where he proceeded to plume his ruffled feathers.

He knew his name and would come at call. He did not like at all to be left alone, and would follow us with cries to the door when we left the room, and so swift were his motions that it was often impossible to get out and shut the door in time to keep him inside; he would dart through just as it was closing, determined not to be left behind. And when we came back, how glad he was to see us! In consequence of living so much at liberty he was very strong of wing, and delighted to fly back and forth through the hall, darting after us as we ran and called him, and seeming to enjoy such a game of romp as much as any child.

He might, no doubt, have been taught many tricks, but he knew only one or two. My sister taught him to fly at her hand when she shook it at him, and he would continue fluttering in the air like a humming-bird, in pretended anger, scolding and chattering as he did so. We also taught him to play with pins, by placing four or five in the palm of the hand, and holding it over the oil-cloth or zinc on which the stove stood. He would pick them up one after another and whisk them down, cocking his head over as each one fell and listening to hear it strike. He would go on doing this as long as any one had patience to pick them up for him. If by chance my ear-rings were left lying on the dressing-table, he invariably discovered them and threw them down to the floor, I suppose for the pleasure of hearing them fall.

His habits with regard to going to roost were interesting and peculiar. While quite young-a baby in fact he made up his mind to roost on the top of my collar, just under my coil of back hair, liking, I suppose, to feel the warmth of my neck. Sometimes he would get close up under my chin. I had to remove him again and again from these favorite places. After this we kept plants in the room and he chose these for his roosting-places, but was

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