'You won't do a thing to yourself one of these fine days. remarked the horseman with evident relish, 'if you don't quit carrying that sort of life-saver. Come over to the ranch and I'll swap you a hand-axe for it. Helen sniffed audibly and distastefully.
The whole place was rotten and scaling like a leper. The single large room was unfurnished save for a crazy table, three wooden boxes, which might be used as seats, and a great pile of decayed fishing-net in the corner. The splinters of a fourth box, with a hand-axe, which leaned against the wall, showed how the wood for the fire had been gathered.
I was greatly taken with the thought, and, dropping my hand-axe, hurried into the house and wrote a note to her at once, which I thereupon tied to the end of the pole by a short string. But as I started for the garden this arrangement looked too much like catching Georgiana with a bait.
One day I had been at work in one of the plantations, and just as I was marking with my hand-axe a birch tree to be felled, a thought came into my head. I left the cross half executed, and threw the axe on the bank, hurried home, and locked myself in the study. Pen and paper were lying before me, and in a moment I had got deep into the introduction of my heroine.
That took her a year, and now she is breaking up my habit of reading nothing but novels. She gets us all down in the end. One day when she and Joe were little children they were out at the wood-pile, and Georgiana was sitting on a log eating a jam biscuit, with her feet on the log in front of her. Joe had a hand-axe, and was chopping at anything till he caught sight of her feet.
In Europe generally, polished celts belong to the Megalithic or latest division of the Neolithic, but this implement appeared much earlier, and in a sense succeeded the Palaeolithic hand-axe.
Three hatchets are brought to light; one of them a two-pound clumsy hand-axe, the others of an old time, Mt. Vernon, G.W. pattern. "And now," says good-natured Bush, "you give directions and we'll do the work."
At last I wore him clean out, and he lay down, broken-winded, broken-hearted, hungry, and thirsty. When I found he wouldn't budge, I hamstrung him, and spent the better part of the day wading into him with the hand-axe, he a-sniffing and sobbing till I worked in far enough to shut him off.
He selected an open spot instead and dismounted on a sheep pelt spread flat upon the ground; with a hand-axe he hewed out a triangular trap bed a foot across by three inches deep, placing every shred of fresh earth removed from it in a canvas sack; then he fitted a heavy Newhouse four in place with both springs bent far to the rear and drove a slender steel pin out of sight through the swivel ring of the chain.
The boat proved to be a cumbersome flat-boat of the type used by clam-fishers. In fact the smell that simply swirled up from its oozy bottom left no doubt that the boat had been used for that purpose. A pair of unbelievably heavy oars, cut from a sapling with a hand-axe, trailed in the water from "loose oarlocks." Dave gave a gasp of dismay as he "hefted" the rough implements.