Page:Lake Ngami.djvu/418

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such (after knocking me down, which I took for granted would be the case) as to carry her beyond me, and I might thus be afforded a chance of escape. So, indeed, it happened; for, having tumbled me over (in doing which her head, and the fore part of her body, owing to the violence of the charge, was half buried in the sand), and trampled on me with great violence, her fore quarter passed over my body. Struggling for life, I seized my opportunity, and, as she was recovering herself for a renewal of the charge, I scrambled out from between her hind legs.

But the enraged beast had not yet done with me. Scarcely had I regained my feet before she struck me down a second time, and with her horn ripped up my right thigh (though not very deeply) from near the knee to the hip; with her fore feet, moreover, she hit me a terrific blow on the left shoulder, near the back of the neck. My ribs bent under the enormous weight and pressure, and for a moment I must, as I believe, have lost consciousness—I have, at least, very indistinct notions of what afterward took place. All I remember is, that when I raised my head I heard a furious snorting and plunging among the neighboring bushes. I now arose, though with great difficulty, and made my way, in the best manner I was able, toward a large tree near at hand for shelter; but this precaution was needless; the beast, for the time at least, showed no inclination further to molest me. Either in the mêlée, or owing to the confusion caused by her wounds, she had lost sight of me, or she felt satisfied with the revenge she had taken. Be that as it may, I escaped with life, though sadly wounded and severely bruised, in which disabled state I had great difficulty in getting back to my "skärm."

During the greater part of the conflict I preserved my presence of mind; but after the danger was over, and when I had leisure to collect my scattered and confused senses, I was seized with a nervous affection, causing a violent trembling. I have since killed many rhinoceroses, as well for