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The Opelousas patriot. [volume] (Opelousas, Parish of St. Landry, La.) 1855-1863, March 03, 1855, English, Image 1

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VOLUME I.
PUBLISHED IN OPELOUSAS, 1'AIMSII OP ST. LANDRY, LOUISIANA
OPELOUSAS,
TPSON AND ALF. LIVINGSTON
What I Live For By G. L. Banks.
I live for those who love mo,
Whoso heurts are kind and true ;
For the heaven that smiles abovo me,
And awaits my spirit too ;
For all human ties that bind mo ;
For the task by God assigned me ;
>or the bright hopes left behind me,
And the good that I ean do.
I love to learn their story
Who've Buffered for my sake ;
To emulate their glory,
And follow In their wako ;
Bard«, patriots, martyrs, sages,
The noble of all ages,
Whoso deeds crowd History's page«,
And Time's great volume make.
I live to hold communion
With all that is divine ;
To feel there is a union
"fwixt Nature's heart and mine ;
To prolit by affliction,
ltoad truths from fields of fiction,
Grow wiser from conviction,
And fulfil each gran (I design.
I live to hail that season
By gifted minds foretold,
When men shall live by reason,
And not alono by gold ;
When man to man united,
And every wrong thing righted,
The whole world shall be lighted
A h Eden was of old.
ï live fonthoso who love me,
Fur those who know me true ;
For the heaven that smiles above me,
And awaits my spirit too ;
For the cause that lacks assistance ;
For the wrong that needs resistance ;
For the future in the distance,
And the good that Ï can do.
THE POOR FELLOW'S STORY.
A HUNGARIAN HERO.
The country between the Rivers Theiss and
and the Danube is a wide plain or steppe, con
taining fifteen thousand square miles. The
!;•;>vf.;ur, on entering- it, perceives at once thai
he has readied a new country. A series of un
dulations, formed by sand-hills, roll away like
waves, until earth and sky are blended toge
thir. 'J'lie expanse, in truth, resembles a great
ocean solidified. Mils after mile it stretches
away in a dull, depressing uniformity, unbroken
by .a vi liage, a house or a tree. Indeed, the
name by which the plain is known-—the Pusz
ta—means "empty" or " void ar.d it is well
described by i»s name. It is bare, naked and
donate, and destitute even of a stream'of wa
ter. litre and there tlie loner pole of a drajv
;,u:ll rises against the sky, like a spectra! arm.
or like the mast of a stranded ship. Occasion
ally a herd of cattle strays along ii: search of
hcrij.'+ce, watched by mounted herdsmen. The
only other sign of life is a .solitary crar>S or
stork, perched on one leg, amidst a bog while
with the powder of .soda, or a vulture wheeling
high in the air in search of prey. A profound
uiienee rests on the plain ; and when broken by
the herdsman's voice, or the bellowing of the
t attle, the sound startles the ear, as it speeds,
one knows not whence, on the wings of th<
wind. 'I he drivers of the diligences whicL
«to .-»; the Pus/,la. if overtaken by night, creep
i to little holes vhicli they have grubbed in the
mnd, sleeping until the light, returns ; und even
they, though accustomed to the route, are
always glad to reach the confines of the waste.
Kahi once, when traversing the Puszta, was
aroused by the driver's exclamation— "Ali
thank üod! 1 see the gallows of Felegyhaz !' :
It was the sign of town, civilization, and—
dinner !
'J'he Puszta is'the cradle, or rather the keep,
of Hungarian nationality. Its denizens are
pure and unadulterated Hungarians—the same
' as the -Magyars, when, a thousand years ago,
they wandered away in search of " fresh fields
and pastures new," from the plains of, distant
Asia. Every man is a hor. eman, and every
one able and ready to become a soldier in de
fense of his country. The inhabitants of the
Puszta are herdsmen, following great droves of
horses, buffaloes, snow-white bullocks, sheep
and swine from pasture to pasture, and
remaining the whole year round beneath the
canopy of heaven. The wildest anion# them
aie the swineherds, and their greatest distinc
tion is to be a redoubtable fighter. They are
preeminently the heroes of i lie plain. Even
their very pleasures are warlike and sanguin
ary. The swineherds are very fond of dancing,
their favorite dance being a representation of
Catching and killing a pig. The dancer, while
springing in the air inspired by the music of a
violin or the bagpipes, whirls a couple of axes
round his head so rapklly that they resemble a
pair of wheels ; now throws them away, anon
catches them again, moving his feet, turning
himself to the measure of t he music, and finishes
the v ' "^Kiance by striking dead a pig placed
re" ùtfor the blow. These axes are tixed to a
) -idSle about three feet in length, and serve both
»us a walking-stick and as a pastoral crook.
The herdsmen become so dexterous in the use
of their axes that one has been known to throw
his axe into the midst of a crowd of persons,
where art enraged buffalo was treading and
overthrowing everything in _ if sway, and hit
the animal so exactly as to kill it on the spot
But still more singular and pugnacious is
another pastime of the swineherds of the Pus
zia. The Konaaz is not exactly a th'. f, but
robs occasionally, for the fun of the thing*
Having determined to eat one of his neighbor's
pig-', he goes at night, with five or six roystee
ing companions, to his neighbor's hut, niu
gives three knocks at the door with lus axe
The sleeper knows what this means, being " t<
the manner born"—it is challenge to conn
forth and defend his pigs. ' Out he rushes, In
and his people, and a battle-royal ensues, ii
which the axes clash, and blood flows sometimes
from terrible wounds. If the'defenders are vic
torious. why, he " saves his bacon ; " but if the
. aggressors, as the cafe <;ericrally is, they are en
titled to select the fattest of the herd and carry
him off.'
The axe is. in other eases, the swineherd's
gauntlet. If he is ill for want of a tight, lie
goes to the <'s:o da, or hedge inn, and, striking
his axe into the erors beam
*' Who is the man her
>f the
II the ^
ia. asU
anv de
they leave the room, and the
at es the t
dôrv. 11 lie
i.h lr
ting drunk
his match, as
i, and the duel
y a fight all
tial weapon only : but it is also a rod of justice
among the swineherds. Suppose, for instance,
a man Lad iost a horse or any other animal,
and suspects that a neighbor has taken it : he
invite3 him to the C'sarda to take wine. After
the third or fourth bottle, Paul suddenly says,
" Brother Stephen, have you seen my gray
foal?"
" Not that I know of," coolly replies Ste
phen.
" Now, then, tell me truly, Stephen ; you
must have seen it. I have seeu it among your
herd."
" You have mistaken my large gray dog for
your foal," is the answer.
" I see," says Paul, " that you are deter
mined to know nothing of it ; " and then, sud
denly drawing his axe from beneath his sheep
skin coat, he strikes Stephen a sharp blow on
the head.
" So, you have strack me ! " exclaims Ste
phen, and, drawing his axe, returns blow for
blow. They light on till honor is satisfied, and
then Stephen suddenly remembers that he has
got the foul, upon which they drain another
bottle, and leave the house as good friends as
they entered it.
These rough pastimes and keen-edged law
suits occasionally end in manslaughter ; and
then the homicide, instead of returning to his
herd, takes to the Steppe for a living—stealing
cattle, robbing travelers, and extorting food
and shelter at the thiuly seattered farms. Nor
does the tanner dare reject his self-invited
guests, knowing that if he did, his dwelling
would sooitbe in flames. The fugitive in the
language w flic country becomes a Szegeny
Legcuy —that is, a " poor fellow "—and this
brings us to our story.
Itozsa Sandor was the son of a wealthy
swinejiteper of the Puszta, and from his ear
His godfather, a magistrate of Szeged, wished
to make him a scholar ; but Rozsa preferred
the wide page of Nature to book-learning. He
:ould ride a horse, lasso a buffalo, tread a mca
ure, and hit a pig, with the best 011 the steppe ;
and these were m his eyes the best of ali learn
ing. Rozsa, moreover, was fond of going to
the C'sarda—fonder of it even than minding his
business ; and, what was even worse for him
than dancing and drinking, he fell desperately
in love with an inkeeper's daughter. Rozsa,
however, had a rival in the girl's affections, and
seemingly a successful one ; and being unable
to brook the slightest interference with his will,
he challenged the happy man to settle their dif
ferences, in the usual way, over a bottle at the
C'sarda. After dispatching a couple of bottles,
Rozsa desired his adversary to give up the girl.
He refused, as in honor bound; they fought,
and Rozba killed his man. Love and marriage
were thus put out of the question ; and nothing
remained for him but to turn " poor fellow."
He became a famous robber—more, however,
from necessity than from inclination. .He
plundered only the rich, and gave freely
pcor, among whom he was regarded as a Robin
1 lood. The Pandurs, or.mounted police, hunt
ed him from county to county, from farm to
farm ; but so great was his activity, presence
of mind and daring 1 , and so clever his con
trivances, that he always eluded them. Once,
he had concealed himself under a pile of nets,
' ich the baffled Pandurs sat down to con
liest boyhood had wandered with the herds.
• • • - 1
oulv the rich, and frave freely to the
,"..u— \. n ...... „ t>/1.:,.
iuw x «ï um uv/ w,.
suit" tcçëtllw. " S^narro^werThisT^, and
-o swift was his little horse lSogar, tkt the
herd;men, linn believers in soreerv. considered
that hi
bore a charmed life—that neither sword
nor pistol cou-d hurt him ; and, in short, that
he uus in league with the devil. On the steppe,
the devil always gets the credit of any thing
which people can not understand.
One stormy night, a crowd of herdsmen were
assembled at a CVarda near the ferry across the
Theiss at Csurgo. Some gipsy musicians were
playing one of the melodies of the country.
They are so wild and impassioned that the
hearer is involuntarily carried away ; and every
now and then one of the company, inspired by
the music, jumped up from his scat, beckoned
to one of a group of girls wishfully waiting in
the doorway, and joined in the dance, all giving
vent to their pleasure by loud exclamations,
each man, at the end, lifting his partner high
in the air. In the midst of this scene, one of
the company rose, and, throwing his hat upon
the ground, exclaimed to the gipsy band, " N ow,
fellows, strike up my note I " He was a young
man, short but muscular; and his eyes, which
glowed like coals of tire in his pale, sail face,
glanced restlessly about from one object to an
other. He held in his hand the axe of a herds
man. The gipsies played one of the simple
and melancholy Magyar tunes, which often
It an assembly into tears. The herdsman
danced alone, going through the mazes of the
dance with such consummate skill that a circle
of admirers gathered round him. Among
these were some Pandurs, who looked signifi
cantly at each other when they saw the dancer.
I le did not notice theni, however, until he had
finished ; and though his scrutinizing glances
met the eyes of the police, he did not appear to
heed them. Calling carelessly for a jug of
wine, he sauntered toward the veranda which
surrounded the house, and before the Pandurs
could approach him, had disappeared. In a few
moments, the trampiug of a horse was heard in
the court-yard, and then the report of a gun.
A crowd of gipsies and traders, who were de
tained at the fen y by stress of weather, rushed
out in surprise and alarm, and beheld, by the
light of the rising moon, the graceful daucer
seated on horseback.
" Rozsa Sandor wishes the worthy Pandurs
a very good night!" he exclaimed, and then
darted off toward the river. The Pandurs
IKvere soon mounted and in pursuit < f the
redoubtable " poor fellow," who, without a
moment's hesitation, dashed into the stream,
and anisic for the opposite shore.
' lie can not hold out long," cried one of the
traders. " Look : the stream 1 \rs hi m away ; "
and at hat moment the Pantlurs fired their
carbines at him, and horse and rider sunk.
Roz.-a had only dived to escape the bullets of
the police.
" ever fear for his life," ?aid a herdsman to
some of his comrades. '• 1 ravher t\ink this i:
not the first time that he swims the river."
He was right. Though the -'niggle was
long and dangerous, it was sueccsshl ; and the
! horse and rider, having gained tin opposite
I bank, soon disappeared in the distance
j love of the C'sarda was Rozsa's besetting
j wai
I
I
!
On otic occasion, some Pandurs,who I
■in*search of him. arrived in a village m-ar j
mita while he was enjoying a dance,I
; summoned n body of tlie "inhabitants to
ess, and he indulged it in definite of
■ ih>".
,.l surp.
It07 .su
■e of th/
termined to sell their l ;
to a small room. IT
them to surrender. R
replied by discharging
siegers through the
returned the shots, ai
been a Hussar, rush(
it open, and shot
who had defended i
act of shooting Ro'
self. The beleagi
defend both door
way he turned, he
the back.
" At least I w
claimed ; and ri
contrived to rea<
lew moments he
Pandurs surroui
though they dart
however, to tak(
fire to the roof; ,
that Kozsa must
by the bullets of
self never despair«
door, favored by
vaulted on his ho
lay hands upon h
charged their ca
bullets whist led id.
through the crow
gate ; but it had 1
neing surrounded L v
impossible. Not so,
as thought, charged the
did not fail him in the desp
u.u.
Rozsa disappeared with a 'sumi cnutaa »un.ui
heightened the evil reputation l'joth of horse
"**■•'
Rozsa would, however, have gladly returned
to an honest life in the Puszta, the wild home
to w)frch heart yearned. lie was truly the
most miserable man upon ear th. He felt that
he had done wrong, but he -also felt that 4< the
world and the world's law" drove1îîm~tp other
crimes for the sake of his life. In 1848, the
Emjieror of Austria " beca me a traitor to Hun
gary, and sold it to the Vroat," as the people
used to say, and they dp throned him from their
hearts. The cry of K( tssuth, 44 The Fatherland
is in danger ! " convcr ted every denizen of the
Puszta into a soldier, and their watchword was.
" Forward from the Theiss over the Danube,"
to drive back the a dvancing Croats. Rozsa,
thinking that even h is forfeited life might be of
some use, sought permission to sacrifice it in
defense of his count ry. He.sent a petition to
the Government, pr aying for an amifesty, and
promising, if it we/ -e granted, to raise a body
of Hussars from the Steppe, and lead them
against the enemy . The Government acecpted
Rozsa's submission and assistance ; and his
pardon was read to him in the market-place of
Szeged, in the prcàseucc of a large crowd of peo
ple. He swore to live and die honorably for
his country—an d kept his oath. He appeared
at , the llc f üf eighty brave fellow*, mounted
and^ armed, am] gi-eatlv distinguished himself
during the war. His feats of, arms and won
derful escapes formed quite a romance. 11 is fol
lowers, like his foes, at length became impressed
with the belief that no bullet could hurt him—
that he was impregnable against every weapon.
Instead, however, of thinking that he was in
with the devil, they maintained that he
! Pressed a charm made of peculiar materials
i ' l . t a «-'r which enabled him to set all
tl,e world at , dehance. J he charm had, it ftp
pears, a weak point—-a counter charm ; but it
was known only to Rozsa himself.
The Hungarian patriots having been over
whelmed, Rozsa retired to the Steppe. The
Austrian Government put, a price of £1000 011
his head, and the police commenced an unceas
ing attempt to capture, him. But it was in
vain ; for every man was his friend. Even the
functionaries of the Government, either out of
sympathy or for more solid reasons, gave him
notice when a. new chase was in the wind. He
organized a body of undaunted men, who spread
throughout the country, and executed his or
dere with implicit obedience and almost unva
rying success. In aiding pat riots to escape from
prison, in getting others in danger across the
frontier, in disconcerting the spy system, and
in others ways, Rozsa continued to serve the pa
triot cause long after it was broken in the tield.
Rozsa, on one occasion, was sent from Pest h
with dispatches, of the highest importance, to
to the Turkish frontier. His wife, during his
absence, foolishly showed herself in Pcsth, so
openly that the police had 110 difficulty in ma
king her a prisoner. The unhappy woman was
tortured by the Austrians, to wring from her
the secrets of her husband. But she defied their
cruelties, and at the end of a fortnight she was
shot at Neugebande. Rozsa did not return un
til the atrocious deed had been done.. but,
though he deeply loved his wife, he manifested
no outward sign of affliction. He became, per
haps, more silent and solitary, but in no way
betrayed the pain which was eating his very
heart. Shortly afterwards, he and a chosen
band of followers left the camp in the Puszta,
for Pcsth, and after an absence of a few days,
dashed into the campaign, Rozsa, carrying be
fore him a large bundle, while a gendarme was
bound to one of his followers. "Their horses
were covered with foam, they were exhausted
with fatigue, and night was far advanced; but
Rozsa ordered his men to mount, and ride for
the reeds which liuc the banks of the Theiss.
For three hours they galloped in silence, and
then dismounting, Rozsa ordered a fire to be
lighted. Then opening the bundle, his follow
were thrilled with horror at beholding the
.
it
in
corpse of his wife. The flickering flame falling
on the ghastly countenance, the lips seemed to
move, and animation return. Rozsa knelt by
the side of the corpse, sobbing and weeping pit
eously, nor could his rude followers refrain from
tears. Rozsa had braved death to rescue the
corpse from the Austrians, that it might rest in
free-ground, and to capture the gendarme who
had seized his wife. A grave was dug, and one
of his troopers, an outlawed Protestant minis
ter, performed the service for the dead. And
then the mourners sung the national anthem of
Hungary : a solemn, plaintive melody, varied
by martial strains. Scarcely had the corpse
been laid its grave, thûn Rozsa, suddenly seiz
ing his axe. aimed a blow at tlie prisoner, who
was already more dead than alive from fright.
Hut as suddenly his spirit, changed, his uprais
ed arm fell idly to his side, and he exclaimed—
"I' came here intending to sacrifice you on the
very mound under which the happiness of my
I life now lies buried. Butas the wrong you
j have perpetrated touched my person, and mit
my country, 1 will avenge in a manner worthy
to |of myself. You have brought th" greatest mise
of
1 bestow
life
1 then bound. I«v Ivozss
1
r '
1111 ® j
.u vagance ol |
.i»y saved you thou
nard cash (a man can t1
. *' «*>-öe a decent billiaixl-player under five j
JJ l0usap<l ) hut has kept you from one ot j
^ 1C eunningest aivl most seductive fascinations j
cver invented by the devil lor carrying on his 1
schemes and plans on this most green-horn,
gullible planet.
And yet . a billiard-table—there it is : look
at it. It does n't seem to be any thing so very
terrible—merely a large mahogany table, cov
ered with green cloth,'and furnished with pock
ets at the sides arid corners. There surely is
n't any thing very terrible about that.
my innig \ ci v icn nue nooui. u:ub.
Possibly not. " lint just take those smoothe
red and white ivory balls cut of the pockets. !
and roll them softly over the smoothe cloth.
How silently they glide! What pretty angles I
and ellipses they make, shooting about f C!n
cushion to cushion, kissing' one another in the
face, dmscemg one another from side to side.
aud indulging in al! sorts of pretty gyrations !
Well ; but I do n't see anv harm iu all that,
Ah ! Take down a cue, and get John or Joe |
or any of the craft to indoctrinate von into the !
use of it—to gradually teach yon the science of ,
carom aud hatard, the mvste.iies of forcing sind !
following, the laws of angles and of mmncn
tum— ami before you are aware of it, you are !
irretrievably lost. Every movement and pro
cess in billiards is in accordance with sime
scientific law ; and the whole game, in ils oper-1
ations and results, is one of the most beautifuï
and gratifying, merely in this point of view,
that can be presented to the eye of mind.
But, in addition to this, no game has ever
been invented—with the single exception of
chess—which so powerfully appeals to the mere
desire to triumph over your adversary, as bil
liards. It seems to set into activity every sen
timent. of vanity, rivalry and ambition, through
out the whole being. I doubt whether the de
sire to win the favor of a woman from a rival
is stronger than the intense desire to conquer.
an antag(
the kccnes
beatific plejisure.
rer than the intense desire to comiut r
gonist at billiards. Defeat produces
lest mortification, and success the most
n u mirQ .
Although there is, of course, a great deal of
gambling carried 011 at. billiards, yet it is not
decidedly one of the " gambling games" in this
country. The excitement of the game itself is
juite sufficient for most men's nerves ; and tiie
farther you progress in it, and the better von :
play, the more absorbing the excitement'be- !
comes. Wo know many men, youug and old. 1
. -. r . ... ., . . i '
and Boston, who i
spend an average ofTrom ten to fifteen hours a
day in playing'billiards, and who never bet.. x- *
ccpt occasionally a round of drinks, or cigars. |
Those who do not understand tho game,or who
arc just beginning to lean, it, will scarcely lind
it possible to credit, this statement; yet e
marker or billiard-table keeper in this city will
assure you that it is literally a fact. Indeed,
although 1 have been for a quarter of a cent
in NewYork, PhiMelphiu
f. i
studying, observing and analyzing the habits!
and dissipations of mankind, I have never been !
quite able to account for the irresistible far- ci- 1
nation exerted over their victims by billiards !
and pretty women. |
Let us step into the fashionable billiard-room !
at about ten or eleven o'clock in the evening. !
The morning is always dull here : it is only in !
the evening that a billiard-room can be consid-j
ered in its full blast. Here are some eight or j
teu tables, all in a row, and all in operation,
It is a curious and instructive sight ; and if you j
have come out for the purpose of studying hu- j
man nature, in its out-of-doors manifestations, !
you could not have chosen a better place or a
more favorable moment. I
At the billiard-room, we meet the most I
respectable as well as the wealthiest and most
intelligent persons in the community. It is
true that there are those who never visit either ;
billiard-rooms oV theaters; but they are none j
the more respectable on that account. A cer
tain quantity of healthy and agreeable pastime,
both for mind and body, is absolutely indispon
sable; and of all their varieties, certainly bil
liards and-tho theater are the last two that we
would have extinguished.
Every man lias a distinct and characteristic
way of playing billiards, as he has of putting
ou his trowsers or getting into bed. »Some
play close and carefully, pausing so long be
tween the shots, to take in all the circum
stances, probabilities and possibilities of the
case, that they completely exhaust your pa
tience ; aud when it comes to your turn, j ou
let drive at random, merely to have it oyer aud
get it out of the way. Otten your cunning and
slow antagonist has studied this as a part of
his chances of the game. These careful old
traders, speculators and bargain-makers know
well the value of slowness and deliberation, in
its effect upon mercurial and impatient men ;
and in trade, as well as billiards, it is one of
their chief means of success. We have often
seen a good billiajrd-player beaten, game aft or
game, in spite of himself, by some careful, slow
moving old fogy, whose game was not equal to
his by half.
This distinction in the manner; of playing
does not apply merely to old and young : it is j
ial. 1 have
young men of the
indications afforded
the game of iiiiiiart
tho future di - «
oticed it bet wo
; and
i-'sobst
, till
j
!
m himself could
. stand-by at bil
,ou when he began
xl : he has got to be
.nsand outs of the game
y can beat him. In fact,
1 leep on the tables/* He is
«red fellow, however, and sel
•utiger more than half the. gani&r
1 times ready to play the " honest
h you. It is amusing to see him
new antagonist, as a fancy man ex
movements of a party with whom
ut to engage. The result, with our
ayer, is generally a profound disdain ;
ore Very few " cider players " who
y chance with him. And yet he goes
game with great zest. The point of
with him is to see how far he can let
and still beat you. Sometimes, by a
bad luck, or mistaken calculation, he
reived, and loses when he had intend«!
In stich a case, look out. for the next
. Eh, Jack 1 But this does n't happen
nee a mouth.
lliards is a very fashionable aud popular
e in all otr principal cities. Recently, our
ilthy classes an beginning to follow the cx
.tnple of the nobility and gentry of England
and France, and to haveMlliard-rooms in their
residences. This is a measure of the greatest
possible advantage, especially to ^he women
aiu j w ho, if they could only-be inhmsdto
p rac tice at billiards a couple of hours every
W (aild derive the very highest advantage
f r0Tn |j l0 healthy and dolightful exercise. In
w0 } mve 0 ften wondered why some enter
p r j 8 f n g genius did not open a billiard-room cx
cliisively for women. Properly conducted,
Sll eh an establishment ought to make a fortune
for its projector. [Philadelphia Mercury.
EGYPTIAN PLAGUE IN GREECE,
LOCUSTS.
A11 Eastern summer .is full of wonders ; but
. . . .,
there is perhaps notMBg- about,1 more awfully
»W'f "W tluia those vi«. t flights ot locusts
w u f'. destroy the vegetation of
^ kmgdo'us m . low days, aud where they
gar. en leave a wilderness.
. 1 TT'ÏÏS " °'S * f Î
to ™ rd ? tho e . nrt
noise, ike that o. April nun falling
1,11 .f»« 4 .} °" k Httent.vuly towards the
. k "» w,n !f - " mt " 00 11
^*1 .'""'".f ' j"! 1 1 . » coa " ( * s
multitude ot lut e black insects no bigger than
» !»"> « head. J hey are hopmng and springing
myW » te Wulong
" ll,ml road ' whlch f «1»'^ Wack with
«wm. ami far awuy among_tto heather which
w tnrna black .ilso. I rule m.l.s and miles,
^ lho S™"»' 1 » M * H * enrf w '! ]l tho ? s 1lttle
insects, aud the same sharp pattering noise con
tiiiues. 'i'liey are the young of the locusts,
who lefs their eggs in the ground last year.
They have just come to life. Three days ago
there was not one to be seen.
A little later and I am passing through a
Greek village. The alarm has spread every
where, and the local authorities have bestirred
themselves to resist their enemies .jvhilo still
weak. Large fires are burning by" tho river
side, aud immense cauldrons full of boiling
water arc steaming over them. The whole
* ., , » , , +1 4 .
™» nt 7 su !° f llöS f bee " locusUluntmç,
returned with the result ot their
day s exertion. Twenty-three thousand pounds
: " ,v " ^"uu.cn ui w.
! do ?» g. row "
1 ;l ,"" ls 11,1 w ", ec,w f y.
' tin. i mon vier nn lin» ivtviaiiil niul v<^
lty-thrce thousand pounds
weight of these little insects, each, as 1 have
saitl, no bigger than a pin's head, have beeu
brought in already in one day.
They liave been caught in a surface of less
than live square miles. There has been 110 dif
ficulty in catching them. Children of six years
A sack
Place
i tllü ° P < sb jfaek on the ground and "you may
«voej. H lud « locusts as last as you ean move
* W»r arn». I he v, läge eoni.uiuuly ],».v about
| ? » 1"'"I'd for ,oeuu(s Some ol the
11'untew haw earned two or thre.' sin lings a
^ As thß arc brought m they.ur
i thrust into the cauldrons of boiling water, and
boiled each for some twenty minutes. They
are then emptied into the- rapid little river
swollen by tlie melting of mountain snows.
The plague goes on spreading daily from
village io village-- from town to town. This
is the fourth year since they first appeared at
Mitylene, whence 1. am writing. It is said that
they seldom remain at one place longer, but
that, in the fourth generation, the race dies out
unless it is recruited from elsewhere. 1 am not
aware whether this is a mere popular supers!i
t-ioii, or a fact bum! on experience. They
show, however, certainly no symptom ot weak
ness or diminution of numbers. In ten (lays
they have increased very much in size. They
are now as long as cockchafers, only fatter,
They srém to be of several _ distinct species,
Their bodies are about an inch and a hali
long, but some are much larger round than
others. They have six legs. The hind legs ot
the largest, hind are nearly three inches long,
or twice the length of tho body. The have im
mouse strength, and can spring hair or five
yards at a time. Tho legs are terminated by
sharp, long claws, and have lesser claws going
about half way up at the sides of them. Their
hold is singularly tenacious. Their heads and
shoulders are cov
j mighty wind. Fa:
d with a kind of horny ar
nior, very tough. Home are of a bright green
color all over, some have brown backs and
yellow bellies with red legs, aud are speckled
not unlike a partridge. Some are nearly black
all over, and have long wings. The largest
species have immensely long feelers projecting
out near tho eyes.' I noticed some of these
feelers twice the length of the rest of the body.
The bite of the largest kind is Strong enough
to bend a pin. This locust has immense sharp
tusks, furnished with saws inside. His mouth
opens < ri all four sides, and closes like a \i e.
His eyes are horny, and he cannot shut them.
The largest kind have two short yellow wings
aud a long pointi 1 fleshy tail—the smallest
have four long black wings and no tail. The
head is always large in comparison to the
body, and not unlike that of a lobster. In
moving, its scales, make a noise like the creak
ing of r ow leather.
The locusts are on the wing. They have
ri.^en from the ground into the air. '.J he\
darken the sky in their steady flight for hours,
ind they make a noise like the rushing of a
w
a
Iii;
j laud and \\u
! The imagim
bro
el. d.
days and days the locust!
south wind continue. A
descend on the gardens ai
struggle for pm-emiiieuce o.
iugs, and tho topmost drwto.
extraordinary gravity. They
loathsomely on fruit and fHTWv.
into eggs and fish, which bee pie li.
consequence. There is no help agi
because of their multitude. Thoy eat.
my bedding : they get into my pocke
into mv hair and beard. The Greek
are obliged to tic their trousers o!i above
gowns as a protection against them.
tread upon them, they blow against you, th
Hy against, you, thoy diiio off the aune. plate,
and hop on a piece of food you are putting
into your month. Their stench ia horrible,
aud this lasts for weeks.
They eat tip the corn lands and the vino
yards, wheresoever they fall. I counted nino
011 one blade or wheat. When they left it, it. •
was as bare as a quill.
" They have still left your apples untouched," ■
I said to 11 gardener.
" Kolas ! " repliai the man. " They have
oaten « j - h ^ II be-side : and what is the use of your
eyebrows if you have lost your eyes 1 "
Three days alter they hud eatea his apples
too.
I noticed,"however, that in the years the
locusts appear there is 110 blight or smaller in
sects about. Perhaps, therefore ,thcy are mer
Muilly sent to destroy tho çmaÙer ami morn
diuigramu»W««i when' t)j®\ j,.ie multiplied
excöxtingly under the prolifto mus re *], 8
15ut, they are a dreiulful Visitation. Tlioy
ate holra in my clothcs a? ï walked abon.
They got ainon.gst my Albanian servant's
arms. Thoy choked up the barrels of his
pistols, and fed upon his sash of silk and gold.
Thoy ate away the tassel of his cap and tlie
leathern sheath of his sword, My French de
bardeur dressing-gown, one niontli from Al
fred's, might have been taken for a recent pur
chase at liag Pair. They ate the sole of iny
slipper while I was asleep on a sofa. They ate
iny shirts in the wardrobe, and they ate my
stockings. The pasha, my host, wpi a touch
ing faith iu the goodness of God, goes about
with a long stick to save them from drowning
when they are driven by the winds into Iiis
reservoir of gold fish.
Perhaps the pasha is right ; but I can not
be so good as he is. For the locusts eat tho
black hair off women's heads while washing at
tlie fountain, and the mouslaclies off gardeners
while thoy sleep in the noonday shadow. They
si rip trees till thoy look as if struck by light
ning or burnt by fire, i see the plants gram
and gay in the moonlight. Ill the morning
their freshness and beauty have departed.
Families sit wailing iu their fields over (ho
ruin of their little all. There is a story that
the locusts have eaten a child while its mother
was away at work. There is a tradition (hat
they once ate a drunken man who fell down in
tho kennel. Neither|event is improbable. I
saw a locust.draw blood from tlie lips of an in
fant. in Us ni^icr's,arms.
They will nbl. die. They seem to have neith
er sight nor hearing—vile'things with nothing
but mouths. If you catch one ho will spring
from your hold, und, leaving his legs behind him,
go on as well as ever. The Cadi had a little
garden ; he had it watched day and night^ for it
was his pride, and full of far-way flowers. Ho
kept fires surrounding it night and day to lire
vent the locusts crawling in. When they had
learned to fly, he fired guns to turn aside their
course. When thoy came in spite of this, he
turned a garden engtbe upon them. Then he
buried them ; but every green thing and every
blossom was stripped from his garden for all
that. ■»
They will not die. They can swim for hours.
Hot water, Cold water, acius, spirits, smoke, are
useless. 1 plunged one in salt and water. He
remained four minutes, and sprung away ap
parently uuinjured. I re-caught him and smok
ed him for live minutes. Two minutes after
wards he had revived, und was hopping away.
I To-caitght the same locust, and buried him us
deeply in the ground as I could dig with a
pocket knife. I marked the place, and the next
mornirg i looked for my friend, but he was gone.
Nothing will kill them but smashing t hem to a
jam with a blow, or boiling them. There is no
protection against t hem. They despise and eat
through the thickest cloths, or sacking, or mat
ting ; and glass coverings for a large extent of
ground would be of course too expensive. The
w ay in which one of my neighbors was enabled
to save parr, of his harvest was by gathering his
fruits and cutting down his corn when the lo
custs came, and then burying his property iu
holes dug in the ground and covered over with
a heavy stone at the aperture, as 1 had seen l,hc
peasantry do in some paris of Western Africa.
This saved him a little. IS' o barn or room would
have done so.
Yet another three weeks, towards the end of
J uly, and the cloud which has hovered over the
land so long is clearing away. And Liiere ari
ses a great wind, so that the locuste are swepV
off in countless armies to the sea, and so drown
ed. It is impossible to bathe for days, or to
walk by the sea-shore, because of the stench of
them. lint, they are gone, and their bodies,
float over tiie sea like a crust, extending to tho
opposite coast of Asia Minor.
I found out while bu*y with this subject, t]iat
the locusts were supposed to have come from
Asia Minor to Mitylene; that when they tirst
,tpi>earod on the northern coast of the island,
they were few in number—a greater portion of
the flight, which settled here, having lieeti proba
bly drowned on their passage. It was not f ill
the third year that they became so numerous
and so mischievous us to cause alarm. Their
devastations were principally confined to the
ines and olives ; afterwards» they grew more
uneral.
The precautions for their destruction finally
iccamc the subject of a fixed le^al regulation,
y which every family was required to destroy
by 1 ^
from about twelve to twenty-five pounds weight
of locusts, according to their numbers, for the
common benefit. Some of the villages, where
labor was scarce, paid this tribute in money.
Twopence a pound was first given for kicusts ;
but, tho price afterwards sunk to a farthing.
The efforts of some places were, however; de
feated by tho ind'ilfereiice or superstition of oth
ers;-so that labor, time, and nsoney were all
lost. More than seven hundred thousand weight
were destroyed without any visib'e effect on
their numbers. Their
ii bout tw<> hundred and sc.
, at thi.
uty to ti

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