1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Hunting
HUNTING (the verbal substantive from “ hunt ”; O. Eng. huntian, hunta, apparently connected with O. Eng. hentan, Gothic hinpan, to capture, O.H.G. hunda, booty), the pursuit of game and wild animals, for profit or sport; equivalent to “ chase ” (like “ catch, ” from Lat. captare, Fr. chasse, Ital. caccia). The circumstances which render necessary the habitual pursuit of wild animals, either as a means of subsistence or for self-defence, generally accompany a phase of human progress distinctly inferior to the pastoral and agricultural stages, resorted to as a recreation, however, the practice of the chase in most cases indicates a considerable degree of civilization, and sometimes ultimately becomes the almost distinctive employment of the classes which are possessed of most leisure and wealth. It is in some of its latter aspects, viz. as a “ sport, ” pursued on fixed rules and principles, that hunting is dealt with here.
Information as to the field sports of the ancients is in many extremely fragmentary. With regard to the ancient Egyptians, however, we learn that the huntsmen directions
gig' 1° constituted an entire sub-division of the great second S, ,0, ., , caste, they either followed the chase on their own account, or acted as the attendants of the chiefs in their hunting excursions, taking charge of the dogs, and securing and bringing home the game. The game was sought in the open deserts which border on both sides the valley of the Nile, but (by the wealthy) sometimes in enclosed spaces into which the animals had been driven or in preserves. Besides the noose and the net, the arrow, the dart and the hunting pole or 'venabulum were frequently employed. The animals chiefly hunted were the gazelle, ibex, oryx stag, wild ox, wild sheep, hare and porcupine; also the ostrich for its plumes, and the fox, jackal, wolf, hyaena and leopard for their skins, or as enemies of the farm-yard. The lion was occasionally trained as a hunting animal instead of the dog The sportsman appears, occasionally at least, in the later periods, to have gone to cover in his chariot or on horseback; according to Wilkinson, when the dogs threw off ia a level plain of great extent, it was even usual for him “to remain in his chariot. and, urging his horses to their full speed, endeavour to turn or intercept them as they doubled, discharging a well-directed arrow whenever they came within its range.”1 The partiality for the chase which the ancient Egyptians manifested was shared by the Assyrians and Babylonians, as is shown by the frequency with which hunting scenes are depicted on the walls of their temples and palaces; it is even said that their 1 See on this whole subject ch viii of Wilkinsorfs Ancient Egyptians (ii 78~92, ed Birch, 1878)
dresses and furniture were ornamented with similar subjects.” The game pursued included the lion, the wild ass, the gazelle and the hare, and the implements chiefly employed seem to have been the javelin and the bow. There are indications that hawking was also known. The Assyrian kings also maintained magnificent parks, or “ paradises, ” in which game of every kind was enclosed; and perhaps it was from them that the Persian sovereigns borrowed the practice mentioned both by Xenophon in the Cyropaedia and by Curtius. According to Herodotus, Cyrus devoted the revenue of four great towns to meet the expenses of his hunting establishments The circumstances under which the death of the son of Croesus is by the same writer (i. 34-45) related to have occurred, incidentally show in what high estimation the recreation of hunting was held in Lydia. In Palestine game has always been plentiful, and the Biblical indications that it was much sought and duly appreciated are numerous. As means of capture, nets, traps, snares and pitfalls are most frequently alluded to; but the arrow (Isa. vii. 24), the spear and the dart (Job. xli. 26-29) are also mentioned. There IS no evidence that the use of the dog (Jos. Ant. iv. 8, IO, notwithstanding) or of the horse in hunting was known among the Jews during the period covered by the Old Testament history; Herod, however, was a keen and successful sportsman, and is recorded by Josephus (BJ. i. 21, 13, compare Ant. xv. 7, 7; xvi. IO, 3) to have killed no fewer than forty head of game (boar, wild ass, deer) in one day.
The sporting tastes of the ancient Greeks, as may be gathered from many references in Homer (Il. ix. 538-545; Od. ix. 120, xvii. 295, 316, xix. 429 seq), had developed at a very early period; they first found adequate literary expression in the work of Xenophon entitled Cynegelicus,3 which expounds his principles and embodies his experience in his favourite art of hunting. The treatise chiefly deals with the capture of the hare; in the author's day the approved method was to find the hare in her form by the use of dogs; when found she was either driven into nets previously set in her runs or else run down in the open. Boar-hunting is also described; it was effected by nets into which the animal was pursued, and in which when fairly entangled he was speared. The stag, according to the same work, was taken by means of a kind of wooden trap (1ro6oarp<iB17), which attached itself to the foot. Lions, leopards, lynxes, panthers and bears are also specially mentioned among the large game; sometimes they were taken in pitfalls, sometimes speared by mounted horsemen. As a writer on field sports Xenophon was followed by Arrian, who in his Cynegeticus, in avowed dependence on his predecessor, seeks to supplement such deficiencies in the earlier treatise as arose from its author's unacquaintance with the dogs of Gaul and the horses of Scythia and Libya. Four books of Cynegetica, extending to about 2100 hexameters, by Oppian have also been preserved; the last of these is incomplete, and it is probable that a fifth at one time existed The poem contains some good descriptive passages, as well as some very curious indications of the state of zoological knowledge in the author's time. Hunting scenes are frequently represented in ancient works of art, especially the boar-hunt, and also that of the hare. In Roman literature allusions to the pleasures of the chase (wild ass, boar, hare, fallow deer being specially mentioned as favourite game) are not wanting (Virg. Georg. iii. 409-413; Ecl. iii. 75; Hor. Od. i. r, 25-28); it seems to have been viewed, however, with less favour as an occupation for gentlemen, and to have been chiefly left to inferiors and professionals. The immense vivaria or theriotropheia, in which various wild animals, such as boars, stags and roe-deer, were kept in a state of semi domestication, were developments which arose at a comparatively late period; as also were the venation es in the circus, although these are mentioned as having been known as early as 186 B.c. The bald and meagre poem of Grattius Faliscus on hunting (Cynegetica) is modelled upon Xenophon's prose work; a still extant fragment (3 1 5 lines) of a similar poem with the same title, of much later date, by Nemesianus, seems to have at one
2 See Layard (Nineveh, ii. 431, 432), who cites Ammian. Marcell. xxvi 6, and Athen xii 9. 3 Engl transl. by Blane. time formed the introduction to an extended work corresponding to that of Oppian.
That the Romans had borrowed some things in the art of hunting from the Gauls may be inferred from the name canis gallzcus (Spanish galgo) for a greyhound, which is to be met with both in Ovid and Martial, also in the words (cams) 'vertragiis and scquszur, both of Celtic origin ' According to Strabo (p zoo) the Britons also bred dogs well adapted for hunting purposes. Phe addiction of the Franks in later centuries to the chase is eudenced by the frequency with which not only the laity but also the clergy ere warned by provincial councils against expending so much of their time and money on hounds, hawks and faltons, and we have similar proof with regard to the habits of other l'eutonic nations subsequent to the introduction of Chrtsttctntty - Originally among the northern nations sport
.is open to every one 3 except to slaves, who were not permitted
to bear arms, the growth of the idea of game-preserving kept pate 1»'1 the development of feudalism. For its ultimate dex clopmtn' tn Britain see FOREST LAW, where also the distinction btt sein lvetists of forest or venery, beasts of chase and l)L¢lbl'~ in l tm in of v arren IS explained. See also GAME LAWS l/nlmz Hznzftizg -The term “ hunting ” has come to be applied specially to the pursuit of such quarries as the stag or lox, or to tolloning an artthcially laid scent, with horse and hound lt thus corresponds to the Fr chasse au courre, as distinguished from chasse au tir, ti l'oiseau, &c, and to the Ger. hetzjagd as distinguished from bzrsth In the following article the English practice ts mainly considered
Doubtless the early inhabitants of Britain shared to a large extent in the hal its of the other Celtic peoples; the fact that they kept good hunting dcps is vouched for by Strabo; and an interesting illustration of the manner in which these were used la given in the inscription quotctl by Orelli 1603)-*H Sllvano Inxicto Sacrum-ob .tprum eximiae formae captum, quem multi antetessores praedart non potucrunt ” Asser, the biographer of Alfred the (freat states that before the prince was twelve years of age he “ was a most expert and active hunter, and excelled in all the branches of that noble art, to which he applied with incessant labour and amanng success "4 Of his grandson Athelstan it ts related by Vl illiam of Malmesbury that after the victory of Brunanburgh he imposed upon the vanquished king of Wales a yearly tribute, hich included a certain number of “ hawks and sharp scented dogs at for hunting wild beasts.” According to the same authority, one of the greatest delights of Edward the Confessor nas “ to follo a pack of svtift hounds in pursuit of game, and to cheer them with his voice.” It was under the Anglo-Saxon kings that the distinction between the higher and lower chase first came to be made-the former being expressly for the ling or those on whoni he had bestowed the pleasure of sharing in it, hile only the latter was allowed to the proprietors of the land To the reign of Cnut belong the “ Constitutiones de l'oresta, ” according to hich four thanes were appointed in every province for the administration of justice in all matters connected ith the forests, under them were four inferior thanes to whom as committed immediate care of the vert and venison 5 The severity of the forest laws which prevailed during the Norman period is sufficient evidence of the sporting ardour of William and his successors The Conqueror himself “loved the high game as if he were their father ”; and the penalty for the unauthori7ed slaughter of a hart or hind was loss of both eyes
Hehn, Kullurpfianzen u. Hausthiere, p. 327
2 References will be found in Sm1th's Dictionary of Christian Antiquities -art on “ Hunting."
3 “ ta omnts in venattontbus . conslstit, " Caes B G, vi. 21. “ Quottes bella non meunt, multum venattbus, plus per ottum transigunt, " Tacitus, Germ 15.
4 See Strutt, Sporls and Pasltmes, who also gives an illustration, “ taken from a manuscrtptal painting of the 9th century in the Cotton Library, " representing “ a Saon ch.cfta1n, attended by his huntsman and a couple of hounds, pursuing the wild swine in a forest." 5 See Lappcnberg, Hts! of Ffigland under lhe Anglo-Saxon Kings (n 361 Thorpe's trans)
At an early period stag hunting was a favourite recreation with English royalty. It seems probable that in the reign of HenryVIII the royal pack of buekhounds was kennelled st at Swinley, where, in the reign of Charles II. (1684), a hu';'€, ng deer was found that went away to Lord Petre's seat in Essex; only five got to the end of this 70 m. run, one being the king's brother, the duke of York. George III. was a great stag hunter, and met the royal pack as often as possible. In T he Chase of the Wild Red Deer, Mr Collyns says that the earliest record of a pack of stag hounds in the Exmoor district is in 1598, when Hugh Polland, Queen Elizabeth's ranger, kept one at Simonsbath. The succeeding rangers of Exmoor forest kept up the pack until some 200 years ago, the hounds subsequently passing into the possession of Mr Walter of Stevenstone, an ancestor of the Rolle family. Successive masters continued the sport until 1825, when the fine pack, descended probably from the bloodhound crossed with the old southern hound, was sold in London. It is difficult to imagine how the dispersion of such a pack could have come about in such a sporting country, but in 1827 Sir Arthur Chichester got a pack together again. Stag hunting begins on the 12th of August, and ends on the 8th of October, there is then a cessation until the end of the month, when the hounds are unkennelled for hind hunting, which continues up to Christmas, it begins again about Ladyday, and lasts till the 10th of May The mode of hunting with the Devon and Somerset hounds is briefly this: the whereabouts of a warrant able stag is communicated to the master by that important functionary the harbour er; two couple of steady hounds called tufters are then thrown into cover, and, having singled out a warrant able deer, follow him until he is forced to make for the open, when the body of the pack are laid on. Very often two or three hours elapse before the stag breaks, but a run over the wild country fully atones for the delay.
It is only within comparatively recent times that the fox has come to be considered as an animal of the higher chase. William Twici, indeed, who was huntsman-in-chief to Edward II, and who wrote in Norman French a treatise on § ::t, ng hunting, ° mentions the fox as a beast of venery, but obviously as an altogether inferior object of sport. Strutt also gives an engraving, assigned by him to the 14th century, in which three hunters, one of whom blows a horn, are represented as unearthing a fox, which is pursued by a single hound. The precise date of the establishment of the first English pack of hounds kept entirely for fox hunting cannot be accurately hxed In the work of “ Nimrod ” (C. J. Apperley), entitled The Chase, there is (p. 4) an extract from a letter from Lord Arundel, dated February 1833, in which the writer says that his ancestor, Lord Arundel, kept a pack of foxhounds between 1690 and 1700, and that they remained in the family till 1782, when they were sold to the celebrated Hugh Meynell, of Quorndon Hall, Leicestershire Lord Wilton again, in his Sports and Pursuits of the English, says° that “ about the year 17 5o hounds began to be entered solely to fox.” The Field of November 6, 1875, p. 512, contains an engraving of a hunting-horn then in the possession of the late master of the Cheshire hounds, and upon the horn is the inscription:-“ Thomas Boothby, Esq., Tooley Park, Leicester. With this horn he hunted the first pack of foxhounds then in England fifty-five years. Born 1677. Died 1752. Now the property of Thomas d'Avenant, Esq, county Salop, his grandson.” These extracts do not finally decide the point, because both Mr Boothby's and Lord Arundel's hounds may have hunted other game besides fox, just as in Edward I'.'s time there were “ fox dogs ” though not kept exclusively for fox On the whole, it is probable that Lord V'ilton's surmise is not far from correct. Since fox hunting first commenced, however, the system of the sport has been much changed. In our great-grandfathers' time the hounds met early, and found the fox by the drag, that is, by the line he took to his kennel on his ieturn from a foraging expedition Hunting the “Le Art de venerie, translated with preface and notes b Sir Henry Dryden (1893), new edition by Miss A. Dryden <1909§ , including The Craft of Venerzf from a 15th-century MS and a 13thcentury poem La Chasre d'nn ferj drag was doubtless a great test of nose, but many good runs must have been lost thereby, for the fox must often have heard the hounds upwind, and have moved off before they could get on good terms with him. At the present day, the woodlands are neither so large nor so numerous as they formerly were, while there are many more gorse covers, therefore, instead of hunting the drag up to it, a much quicker way of getting to work is to hnd a fox in his kennel, and, the hour of the meeting being later, the fox is not likely to be gorged with food, and so unable to take care of himself at the pace at which the modern foxhound travels. Cub hunting carried out on a proper principle is one of the secrets of a successful season. To the man who cares for hunting, as distinct from riding, September and October are not the least enjoyable months of the whole hunting season. As soon as the young entry have recovered from the operation of “ rounding, ” arrangements for cub hunting begin. The hounds must have first of all walking, then trotting and fast exercise, so that their feet may be hardened, and all superfluous fat worked off by the last week in August. So far as the hounds are concerned, the object of cub hunting is to teach them their duty; it is a dress rehearsal of the November business. In ccmpany with a certain proportion of old hounds, the youngsters learn to stick to the scent of a fox, in spite of the fondness they have acquired for that of a hare, from running about when at walk. When cubbing begins, a start is made at 4 or 5 A.M., and then the system is adopted of tracking the cub by his drag. A certain amount of blood is of course indispensable for hounds, but it should never be forgotten that a fox cub of seven or eight months old, though tolerably cunning, is not so very strong; the huntsman should not, therefore, be over-eager in bringing to hand every cub he can find
Hare hunting, which must not be confounded with Coursing (q 1), is an excellent school both for men and for horses. It is Ham attended with the advantages of being cheaper than any other kind, and of not needing so large an area of country Hare hunting requires considerable skill; Beckford even goes so far as to say: “ There is more of true hunting with harriers than with any other description of hounds .... In the first place, a hare, when found, generally describes a circle in her course which naturally brings her upon her foil, which is the greatest trial for hounds. Secondly, the scent of the hare is weaker than that of any other animal we hunt, and, unlike some, it is always the worse the nearer she is to her end.” Hare hunting is essentially a quiet amusement; no hallowing at hounds nor whip-cracking should be permitted; nor should the field make any noise when a hare is found, for, being a timid animal, she might be headed into the hounds' mouths. Capital exercise and mucn useful knowledge are to be derived by running with a pack of beagles. There are the same difficulties to be contended with as in hunting with the ordinary harrier, and a very few days' running will teach the youthful sportsman that he cannot run at the same pace over sound ground and over a deep ploughed field, up hill and down, or along and across furrows. Otter hunting, which is less practised now than formerly, begins just as all other hunting is drawing to a close. When Orr the waterside is reached an attempt is made to hit BF.,
upon the track by which the otter passed to his “ couch, ” which is generally a hole communicating with the river, into which the otter often dives on first hearing the hounds. Vi hen the otter “ vents ” or comes to the surface to breathe, his muzzle only appears above water, and when he is viewed or traced by the mud he stirs up, or by air bubbles, the hounds are laid on. Notwithstanding the strong scent of the otter, he often escapes the hounds, and then a cast has to be made. When he is viewed an attempt is made to spear him by any of the field who may be within distance, if their spears miss, the owners must wade to recover them Should the otter be transhxed by a spear, the person who threw it goes into the water and raises the game over his head on the spear's point. If instead of being speared, he is caught by the hounds, he is soon worried to death by them, though frequently not before he has inflicted some severe wounds on one or more of the pack.
When railways were first started in England dismal prophecies were made that the end of hunting would speedily be brought about. The result on the whole has been the reverse. packs While in some counties the sport has suffered, townsmen who formerly would have been too far from a meet can now secure transport for themselves and their horses in all directions, and as a consequence, meets of certain packs are not advertised because of the number of strangers who would be induced to attend. The sport has never been so vigorously pursued as it was at the beginning of the 2oth century, IQ packs of stag hounds being kept in England and 4 in Ireland, over I7O packs of foxhounds in England, ro in Scotland and 23 in Ireland, with packs of liarriers and beagles too numerous to be counted. The chase of the wild stag is carried on in the west country by the Devon and Somerset hounds, which hunt three or four days a week from kennels at Dunster; by the Quantock; and by a few other local packs. In other parts of England stag hound packs are devoted to the capture of the carted deer, a business which is more or less of a parody on the genuine sport, but is popular for the reason that whereas with foxhounds men may have a blank day, they are practically sure of a gallop when a deer is taken out in a cart to be enlarged before the hounds are laid on. Complaints are often raised about the cruelty of what is called tame stag hunting, and it became a special subject of criticism that a pack should still be kept at the Royal kennels at Ascot (it was abolished in 1901) and hunted by the Master of the Buckhounds, but it is the constant endeavour of all masters and hunt servants to prevent the infliction of any injury on the deer. Their efforts in this direction are seldom unsuccessful; and it appears to be a fact that stags which are hunted season after season come to understand that they are in no grave danger. Packs of foxhounds vary, from large establishments in the “ Shires, ” the meets of which are attended by hundreds of horsemen, some of whom keep large stables of hunter sin constant work-for though a man at Melton, for instance, may see a great deal of sport with half-a-dozen well-seasoned animals, the number is not sufficient if he is anxious to be at all times well mounted-to small kennels in the north of England, where the field follow on foot. The “ Shires ” is a recognized term, but is nevertheless somewhat vague. The three counties included in the expression are Leicestershire, Rutlandshire and Northamptonshire. Several packs which hunt within these limits are not supposed, however, to belong to the “ Shires, ” whereas a district of the Belvoir country is in Lincolnshire, and to hunt with the Belvoir is certainly understood to be hunting in the “ Shires.” The Shire hounds include the Belvoir, the Cottesmore, the Quorn and the Pytchleys; for besides the Pytchley proper, there is a pack distinguished as the W oodland. It is generally considered that the cream of the sport lies here, but with many of the packs which are generally described as “ provincial ” equally good hunting may be obtained. Round about London a man who is bent on the pursuit of fox or stag may gratify his desire in many directions. The Essex and the Essex Union, the Surrey and the Surrey Union, the Old Berkeley, the West Kent, the Burstow, the Hertfordshire, the Crawley and Horsham, the Puckeridge, as regards foxhounds; the Berkhampstead, the Enfield Chase, Lord Rotl!schild's, the Surrey, the West Surrey and the Warnham, as regards stag hounds-as well as the Bucks and Berks, which was substituted for the Royal Buckhounds-are within easy reach of the capital. Questions are constantly raised as to whether horse and hounds have improved or deteriorated in modern times. It is probable that the introduction of scientific agriculture has '“ brought about an increase of pace. Hounds hunt no as well as ever they did, are probably faster on the h, ,, ,, , d, whole, and in the principal hunts more thoroughbred horses are employed F oi pace and endurance no hunter approaches the English thoroughbred, and for a bold man who “ means going, ” a steeplechase horse is often the best animal that could be obtained, for when he has become too slow to win races “ between the flags, ” he can always gallop much faster, and usually lasts much longer, than animals who have not his advantage of blood. The quondam “ 'chaser” is, however, usually apt to be somewhat impetuous at his fences. But it must by no means be supposed that every man who goes out hunting desires to gallop at a great pace and to jump formidable obstacles, or indeed any obstacles at all. A large proportion of men who follow hounds are quite content to do so passively through gates and gaps, with a canter along the road whenever one is available. A few of the principal packs hunt five days a week, and sometimes even six, and for such an establishment not fewer than seventy-five couples of hounds are requisite. A pack which hunts four days a week will be well supplied with anything between fifty and sixty couples, and for two days a week from twenty-five to thirty will suffice. The young hound begins cub-hunting when he is some eighteen months old, and as a rule is found to improve unt1l his third or fourth season, though some last longer than this. Often, however, when a hound is five or six years old he begins to lack speed. Exceptional animals naturally do exceptional things, and a famous hound called Potentate is recorded by the 8th duke of Beaufort to have done notable service in the hunting field for eleven seasons.
Servants necessary for a pack include the huntsman, the duties of whose office a master sometimes fulfils himself; two Hunt servants.whippers in, an earth-stopper and often a kennel huntsman is also employed, though the 18th Lord Willoughby de Broke (d. 1902), a great authority, laid it down that “the man who hunts the hounds should always feed them.” In all but the largest establishments the kennel huntsman is generally called the “feeder.” It is his business to look after the pack which is not hunting, to walk them out, to prepare the food for the hunting pack so that it is ready when they return, and in the spring to attend to the wants of the matrons and whelps. A kennel huntsman proper may be described as the man who does duty when the master hunts his own hounds, undertaking all the responsibilities of the huntsman except actually hunting the pack. It may be said that the first duty of a huntsman is to obtain the confidence of his hounds, to understand them and to make himself understood, and the intelligence of hounds is remarkable. If, for example, it is the habit of the huntsman to give a single note on his horn when hounds are drawing a covert, and a double note when a fox is found, the pack speedily understand the significance. The mysteries of scent are certainly no better comprehended now than they were more than a hundred years ago when Peter Beckford wrote his Thoughts on Hunting. The subject of scent is full of mysteries. The great authority already quoted, the 8th duke of Beaufort, noted as a very extraordinary but well-known fact, for example, “that in nine cases out of ten if a fox is coursed by a dog during a run all scent ceases afterwards, even when you get your hounds to the line of the fox beyond where the dog has been.” This is one of many phenomena which have always remained inexplicable. The duties of the whipper-in are to a great extent explained by his title. Whilst the huntsman is drawing the cover the whipper-in is stationed at the spot from which he can best see what is going on, in order to view the fox away; and it is his business to keep the hounds together when they have found and got away after the fox. There are many ways in which a whipper-in who is not intelligent and alert may spoil sport; indeed, the duke of Beaufort went so far as to declare that “in his experience, with very few exceptions, nine days out of ten that the whipper-in goes out hunting he does more harm than good.” In woodland countries, however, a good whipper-in is really of almost as much importance as the huntsman himself; if he is not alert the hounds are likely to divide, as when running a little wide they are apt to put up a fresh fox. The earth-stopper “stops out” and “puts to”—the first expression signifying blocking during the night, earths and drains to which foxes resort, the second performing the same duties in the morning so as to prevent the fox from getting to ground when he has been found. In the interests of humanity care should be taken that the earth-stopper always has with him a small terrier, as it is often necessary to “stop-out” permanently, and unless a dog is run through the drain some unfortunate creature in it, a fox, cat or rabbit, may be imprisoned and starved to death. This business is frequently performed by a gamekeeper, a sum being paid him for any litter of cubs or fox found on his beat.
With regard to the expenses of hunting, it is calculated that a master of hounds should be prepared to spend at the rate of £500 a year for every day in the week that his hounds areCost of hunting. supposed to hunt. Taking one thing with another, this is probably rather under than over the mark, and the cost of hunting three days a week, if the thing be really properly done, will most likely be nearer £2000 than £1500. The expenses to the individual naturally vary so much that no figures can be given. As long ago as 1826 twenty-seven hunters and hacks were sold for 7500 guineas, an average of over £290, and when Lord Stamford ceased to hunt the Quorn in 1853, seventy three of his horses fetched at auction an average of close on £200. Early in the 19th century, when on the whole horses were much cheaper than they are at present, 700 and 800 guineas are prices recorded as having been occasionally paid for hunters of special repute. A man may see some sport on an animal that cost him £40; others may consider it necessary to keep an expensive establishment at Melton Mowbray or elsewhere in the Shires, with a dozen or more 500~guinea hunters, some covert-hacks, and a corresponding staff of servants. Few people realize what enormous sums of money are annually distributed in connexion with hunting. Horses must be fed; the wages of grooms and helpers be paid; saddlery, clothing, shoeing, &c., are items; farmers, innkeepers, railway companies, fly-men and innumerable others benefit more or less directly. (A. E. T. W.) )