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savage that he is, kills the most beautiful birds to make a head-dress for himself and a girdle for his swarthy mate ; and although many, many thousands of years have passed away since then, still the finest feathered gems are sacrificed to the lingering love of ornament and display.

But we will not forget my weasel ! I am bound to confess, despite his pure, innocent matching of the " beautiful snow," that he is far from attractive. There is something serpent-like in his aspect and general make-up. His flat, triangular, rattlesnake head, almost de-formed by great jaw muscles, is set on his long neck with a vicious cant like a hoe on a handle ; his beady black eyes seem so eager and wakeful that one may well believe that it would be hard " to catch a weasel asleep." There is nothing frolicsome and prankish in his appearance. Keen, inquisitive, restless, bloodthirsty, cruel, courageous, these describe his leading characteristics. He is a creature of solitary habits, prefers his own company to any other, and shares neither his luck nor his misery with another. No other animal of its size is possessed of such audacious pluck. They will seize a rabbit, or partridge, or hen, and overmaster them in many instances. When it comes to eating they pre-


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