Glass drops forward, twitchin' an' 'eavin' horrid natural, into the shotted 'ammick all spread out before him, and the firin' party closes in to guard the remains of the deceased while Sails is stitchin' it up. An' when they lifted that 'ammick it was one wringin' mess of blood! They on'y expended one wardroom cock-bird, too. Did you know poultry bled that extravagant? I never did.

I say a cock-bird because I know that log to be a drumming-log." She raised herself and guided her horse along the trail, bright eyes restlessly scanning ground and fringing underbrush. "Deer passed here one two three the third a buck a three-year old," she said, sinking her voice by instinct. "Yonder a tree-cat dug for a wood-mouse; your lynx is ever hanging about a drumming-log."

So thought the farmer's son, who took the chance to test his new American .22-bore repeating-rifle, now that all the keepers were well out of the way. And he had come mighty close to bagging the old cock-bird, too. "As near as made no odds," he said, which was true, but only the old bird himself knew quite the closeness of the call.

A mossy level spot of earth surrounded by bushes is selected for a dancing-place, and kept well cleared of sticks and stones; round this area the birds assemble, when a cock-bird, with vivid orange-scarlet crest and plumage, steps into it, and, with spreading wings and tail, begins a series of movements as if dancing a minuet; finally, carried away with excitement, he leaps and gyrates in the most astonishing manner, until, becoming exhausted, he retires, and another bird takes his place.

I notice that among the white swans on the Thames the cock-bird will fight to preserve his lady from intrusion, but he never thinks of taking her any breakfast, or of bringing her food of any kind, even though he may be fed most liberally himself. His only idea of helping her actively is by minding house while she goes off to feed and also while she is making her toilet.

The sweet notes begin before daylight in the spring-time, and the cock-bird seems never tired of singing to his mate as she sits on her eggs. By and by, when they are busy with family cares, feeding the little ones, and teaching them to fly, there is not much time for singing. It is said that every bird has a different note or call. I wonder how many you know?

I then went from home for two or three days, and, when I returned, the young one was gone, which I take for granted had flown. Though during this time I frequently saw cuckoos in the thicket I mention, I never observed any one, that I supposed to be the cock-bird, paired with this hen."

Things got stiller and stiller, till they was as still as mushrooms! Then the bugler let off the 'Dead March' from the upper bridge. He done it to cover the remarks of a cock-bird bein' killed forrard, but it came out paralysin' in its tout ensemble. You never heard the 'Dead March' on a bugle?

"You mind your own business, Mike," said Jem, indignantly. "That's what I'm a-doing of, and a-waiting for orders, Mr Jem Wimble. He's hen-pecked, Mas' Don, that what's the matter with him. Been married only three months, and he's hen-pecked. Haw-haw-haw! Poor old cock-bird! Hen-pecked! Haw-haw-haw!"

The cock-bird, too, who had been silent whilst his young were unfledged, begins to sing again, and throwing off the anxious and care-beset manners of a parent, again assumes that of a bridegroom. But to return to Wrens' nests. I found one within ten yards of the one I had known of since the 10th of April, lined, and ready for an egg.