Imágenes de páginas
[graphic][merged small][merged small]


[With an elegant Copper-plate of that curious Animal.]

THIS noble animal is found in divers such remarkable particulars relating to this

1 parts both of Afia and Africa, and wondersul creature, as are supported by is the largest of all quadrupeds. It is of proper authorities only. different fizes in the various kingdoms it They are often taken in decp ditches; inhabits. In the East-Indies they are 12 covered over slightly with earth, branches, and oftentimes 15 feet in height; those on and leaves, which finking under their the Gold and Ivory Coasts are not quite weight, they are thus caught without any fo large. The skin of some is black, very posibility of escaping. If it so happens, thick, and without hair ; of others it is of that a young elephant falls into the soare; a dusky brown, thinly scattered over with the mother, on perceiving the disaster of fhort black hairs; it hangs loose in folds her offspring, throws herself in after its in divers parts of the body. The ears are through the anxiety the endures and the large, hanging downwards; the eyes are love the bears it, though natural instinct -full; the tail is Aender and not very long; informs her that by this step the loses her their legs are like the trunks of small trees liberty, perhaps her life. In dan ter she cut off towards the roots, and the feet fet never forsakes it, the will lose ber own round with thick, short, and broad toes. life first in its defence : in paffing a river The proboscis, or trunk, is of a great the winds her fnout round its body, and length, hanging down between the two carries it in that manner to the other side, tuiks, and gradually leffening towards the where she lands it in safety. If they chance extremity, which is flat, and hath two to meet a Gck elephant, it is surprising to holes, or nostrils, at the fat end. It can fee with what tenderness they behave tothorten and lengthen its trunk at pleasure, wards him, seeking herbs and other reit being full of wrinkles : It is of a grisly medies to comfort him; if he dies they do fubftance, and is endowed with so mach not leave the body exposed, but bury it, strength, that the stroke of it will break and cover the grave with leaves and the bones of a horse or camel, and even branches of trees. At the loss of a keeper kill him outright. With it the elephant they have been known to pine away with can even pull up great trees by the roots; grief, so susceptible are they of love and yet it is fo pliable, that he conveys all bis affection ! viduals through it to his mouth, by means According to Pausanias, the Indians in of those two holes. His body is round Aga, and the Lybians in Africa were the and full, and the back rises in an arch first nations that used elephants in battle, more remarkable and prominent than in others only esteeming them on account of any other animal. The grinders are of a the ivory they produced. The Perfians, very great thickness, but the tongue is Lydians, and neighbouring nations, anImall. They shed their teeth often, more ciently intermixed camels with their troops, especially when young, the negroes often as in after-ages they did elephants. Tho', finding fingle teeth dropt at different places. from 'Herodotus, Plato, and others, it is The tusks, which are what we call ivory, fufficiently evident that Egypt produced are larger in the male than in the female; them, particularly that part of it borderfome of them are feven or eight feet long, ing upon Ethiopia, yet they were not and weigh igo pounds.

known in that country as military animals • This ftupendous ereature is of a docili- till the time of the Ptolemys. From Egypt ty and ingenuity very nearly approaching it is probable the practice of fighting with to human reason. Its surprising fagacity, them spread into Cyrenaica; the people Tetentive memory, wonderful gratitude of which region in all ikliehood might and resentment, with many other qualities communicate it to their neighbours the. peculiar to this animal, have ever excited Carthaginians. · They had various ways the admiration of both ancients and mo- of taming them. derns. Setting aside every thing which Pyrrhus, king of Epirus, was the first Inay be deemed fabolous, we shall mention who brought them into Italy, in the year January, 1761,


before Christ 279. The victory which he At the battle between Pyrrhus and the obtained over the Romans was chiefly ow. Roman consul Curius Dentatus, near Deing to the elephants ; for, when he almost neventum, the wing where Pyrrhus himdespaired of the success of the battle, he self fought in person repulsed the Romans, placed 20 elephants in the front of his and drove them back quite to their inarmy, with towers on their backs, full of trenchments. This advantage was in a bowmen. The very light of these dreadful great measure owing to the elephants ; animals chilled the bravery of the Romans, which the Consul perceiving, ordered -a who had never before seen them. How- body of reserve which he had pofted near ever they still advanced, till their horses, the camp, to advance and fall upon the frightened at the right of them, and at the elephants. These carrying burning torches strange noise they made, took head, and in one hand, and their swords in the other, either threw their riders, or carried them threw the former at the elephants, and off full speed, in spite of their utmost ef- with the latter defended themselves against forts. In the mean time the archers dif- their guides : by this means they were charging showers of darts from the towers, forced to give way. The elephants being wounded a great many of the Romans in thus put to flight, broke in upon their the confufion, while others were trode to own men, and there caused a general difdeath by the elephants. So, in most battles order, which was increased by a remarkwhere elephants were used, they greatly able accident ; for a young elephant being contributed to the defeat of the enemy. wounded, and thereupon making a dread

Plutarch relates, that when Pyrrhus en ful noise, the mother quitting her rank, tered the city of Argos, one of his soldiers and hastening to the assistance of her young mounted on an elephant received a wound, one, pot those who still kept their ranks by which he was thrown to the ground; into the utmost confusion. In the end the the beast soon after milling his master, ran Romans gained a complete victory, Pyr. about in a strange manner among the croud rhus retired to Tarentum, and from thence 'till he had found him, and then with his into his own dominions. trunk replaced him on his back, and with The Consul returned to Rome, which the greatest fury returned to the port of the he entered in triumph, in the most magni-. town, trampling under his feet all that ficent manner that had ever yet been seen. came in his way.

Amidst a profufion of riches and other At the battle of Asculum, the Roman fpoils, nothing so much delighted the consuls, in order to guard their troops people as the fight of the elephants, with against the fury of these animals, had pre- towers on their backs: animals which had pared chariots, armed with long points of never before been seen in Rome, and which iron in the shape of forks, and filled them they had so much dreaded with soldiers carrying firebrands, which T he first time mention is made in hi. they were directed to throw at the ele story of the Carthaginians making use of phants, and by that means frighten them, them, is in the first Punic war, which be. and set their wooden towers on fire. These gan in the year before Christ 263, when chariots were posted over against Pyr the custom of fighting with these animals rhus's elephants, and ordered not to stir was adopted by that nation, in the room till they entered upon action; but he or of that which prevailed before, of engaging dered his elephants to march round to ano- with armed chariots. What strengthens ther side, where there were no chariots this is, that those nations who, it is proported, and caufing them to fall on the bable, knew nothing of elephants, such as Roman horse there, foon, as usual, put the Britons, Gauls, &c. had chariots in them into confusion. The engagement use among them till they were conquered was long and bloody, but the Apulians by the Romans I. attacking Pyrrhus in his rear, he was in. The Carthaginians generally posted their the end forced to retreat.

elephants in front, in order to strike the

I Neither the Jews, Allyrians, Babylonians, Phoenicians, Arabs, Ethiopians, nor even the Medes and Persians, ever brought elephants into the field before the time of Alexander the Great, who began his reign in the year before Christ 336. King Juba, in Philoftralus, intimates, that the Moors and Lybians in very early times fought with elephants, which nocion seems to be countenanced by Ælian,


greater terror into the enemy. Sometimes The Romans being fenfibie of the imbeter they were distributed in both portance of these animals, and how much Bags. Those which they made use of they were to be dreaded, as they had fulwere most times, if not always, Indian ly experienced in their several battles with kepbaprs, which much exceeded those of Pyrrhus, were for a long time very much Lybia in Atrength and magnitude. Each afraid of them; they were so intimidated Eda wooden tower fastened to his back, by the destruction they made in the famous

ab 22 warriors in it, and an Indian to battle between Regulus and the CarthagiEzage the beast, which he did with the nian General Xantippus, that it entirely Cat dexterity. The Lybian elephants stopped the progress of the war for two Tere not able to carry above 7 or 8 men years. The Carthaginians perceiving how I the first book of the Maccabees, Antio- much they were afraid of these creatures, eus Eupator is there mentioned to have determined to give them battle. The elebreeght against the Jews several Indian phants repulsed the Romans commanded elephants with towers on their backs, con by the famed Metellus, for some time; tuining 32 men, and an Indian guide. but as use renders every thing less terrible, As the Carthaginian soldiers were exercis they were now not so much forprized and ed by their officers, so their elephants frightened at the light of them; they made vere raised up and exercised by their In- a brave refiftance, and their dartmen can guides. By their monstrous size, fil- wounded these boisterous animals in such thy smell, terrible noise, and prodigious a manner, that they grew furious, and ftrength, as well as the efforts of the could hold no longer, but fell back on garrisops on their backs, it is incon- their own troops, put them in great diforceivable to imagine the havock and de- der, and in the end they were totally defruction they made. The Indians who feated ; a great number of elephants were managed them appeared in a dress the taken, and sent afterwards to Rome, poft proper to heighten the confternation where they swelled the pomp of the cone the enemy, and began the fight with queror's triumph, which was more magthe utmost fury. The signal to advance nificent than that of the consul Curius was the sound of drums and trumpets ; in Dentatus, mentioned before, for no less ie instant they made a furious assault, than 104 of these noble creatures marched throwing themselies among the enemy, through the city in procession : the air and carrying every where with them hor- rung with acclamations at the fight of ror, death, and desolation. No horses them. As the Romans had resolved never but the Numidian, which were accustom- to make use of elephants in war, and did ed to them, could approach the Indian not care to be at the expence of feeding elephants, and therefore the enemy's ca- them, they ordered them to be hunted valry was soon put to the rout by them: and put to death in the circus; so that the sometimes, by being pierced with darts, people were at the same time diverted, they became so enraged as to turn upon and taught to despise the animals they had their own men, as we have related above hitherto so much dreaded. in Pyrrhus's battles, trampling vast num. They also made use of them in the lifts bers of the soldiers to death, which was and combats of gladiators. This spectacle their common method of destroying those was exhibited for the first time in the they attacked; though sometimes with 655th year of Rome. At first they only their trunk, or proboscis, they dispatched made them engage with bulls, but afterthem. The Romans also often, by firing wards with men. When Cæsar gave battle the castles on their backs, forced them to to Caffivelaunus king of the Britons, he recoil on their own troops, which in such had but one elephant, and with this alone a case they did not fail of putting into dir. he put the whole army to Aight. erder. When this happened, the Cartha- The elephants were taught by the anginians themselves were forced to dispatch cients to Mew respect to kings and princes; them, which they did very expeditiously, they taught them to bend their knees and by a particular method described by Livy. fall down before them, and then raise These are the principal points relating to themfelves up again. Several Indian mothe manger of fighting with elephants, narchs kept 20 of them, who guarded particularly among the Carthaginians, as their tents by turns in time of war, and far as authors who have wrote on this sub- in battle they had not more zealous dekit relate,


fenders. What is mentioned by Pliny of flection : “ What a reproach is this to the elephant of Porus is scarce credible :' those ungrateful men, who owe their edu. that author relates, that the animal per- cation, perhaps their very subsistence, to ceiving his master exhausted by the wounds the kindness of those who had taken them with which he was covered, lowered him- into their friendship, and at once, when self, that he might set him down without misfortunes approach, abandon them in hurting him, and drew out, with his their neceflities, and leave them to languish trunk, the arrows with which he was under the frowns of fortune: Such men stuck all over ; but perceiving his blood to are only the friends of our prosperity and flow very fast, he again put him upon his favours, who value us only as we may be back, and carried him to his camp.

of service to them." Ælian relates a like instance: An In As cruclty is the direct opposite to the dian king having received intelligence that character of the elephant, they must have a young nobleman of the country had in been provoked and irritated a long time his poffeffion a curious white elephant, before they could be made furious. It is which served him for riding, and thewed related by Pliny, that a prince ordered 30 him extraordinary marks of love and af- men, who had incurred his displeasure, to fection, demanded him of the young lord be torn to pieces by elephants : for that for himself; but he, not being able to purpose they were tied to flakes, and the bear the thoughts of parting with it, at same number of these animals were let first evaded the king's request; and at loose upon them, and certain persons aplength, finding him fixed in bis refolution, pointed to provoke and enrage them, ço avoid the consequences of a refusal, fled They accordingly irritated them a long with the elephant into the mountains; time, and at last rendered them exceeding thither he was pursued by order of the furious, yet not against the unhappy vicprince, but getting on the top of a high tims, but against those who provoked rock, he sustained a long attack, parrying them, and it was found impossible to make che arrows, and defending himself by them the means of the prince's vengeance, throwing stones and other misfiles, in This animal has a love and compassion which he was well feconded by the ele- for the defenceless, and even pities an enephant, who also threw them with admirable my who is unequal to him in force. He dexterity. In spite of this brave restance, has been observed, when he has passed the soldiers at last mounted the rock; then through a flock of theep, to turn them he animal, enraged to the greatest pitch aside with his trunk, for fear he should of fury, threw himself among them, over- tread upon and destroy them. In their çurned many with his trunk, dathed them private quarrels with one another, they in pieces, trod to death others with his never make use of their tulks, left they feet, put the rest to fight, and taking up should deprive each other of those weahis master, who in the course of the en- 'pons necessary for their mutual defence counter had been grievously wounded, againit their common enemies, marched off with him in triumph. Ælian closes this narrative with the following re- ; [To be corcluded in our next. ]

The LIFE of the Right Honourable JOSEPH ADDISON,

Efq; Secretary of State to his Majesty King George I. with an Account of his WORKS...

TOSEPH ADDISON was the son of Dr. about the year 1672, when his father was J Lancelot Addison, dean of Litchfield, rector of that place, and being not likely and archdeacon of Coventry, a very learn- to live, was baptized the same day he was ed and worthy man, and of Jane his wife, born. When he grew up to an age fit who was the daughter of Nathaniel Gul for going to school, he was first put under fton, Efq; and fifter to Dr. William Gul- the care of the reverend Mr. Naith, at fton, bishop of Bristol. He was born at Ambretbury; he was afterwards removed Milfton, near Ambresbury in Wiltfhire, to a school at Salisbury, taught by the re

« AnteriorContinuar »