The Sportsman - On Hunting, A Sportsman's Manual, Commonly Called Cynegeticus
by Xenophon
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by Xenophon

Translation by H. G. Dakyns

Xenophon the Athenian was born 431 B.C. He was a pupil of Socrates. He marched with the Spartans, and was exiled from Athens. Sparta gave him land and property in Scillus, where he lived for many years before having to move once more, to settle in Corinth. He died in 354 B.C.

The Sportsman is a manual on hunting hares, deer and wild boar, including the topics of dogs, and the benefits of hunting for the young.


This was typed from Dakyns' series, "The Works of Xenophon," a four-volume set. The complete list of Xenophon's works (though there is doubt about some of these) is:

Work Number of books

The Anabasis 7 The Hellenica 7 The Cyropaedia 8 The Memorabilia 4 The Symposium 1 The Economist 1 On Horsemanship 1 The Sportsman 1 The Cavalry General 1 The Apology 1 On Revenues 1 The Hiero 1 The Agesilaus 1 The Polity of the Athenians and the Lacedaemonians 2

Text in brackets "{}" is my transliteration of Greek text into English using an Oxford English Dictionary alphabet table. The diacritical marks have been lost.


A Sportsman's Manual

Commonly Called CYNEGETICUS


To the gods themselves is due the discovery, to Apollo and Artemis, patrons of the chase and protectors of the hound. (1) As a guerdon they bestowed it upon Cheiron, (2) by reason of his uprightness, and he took it and was glad, and turned the gift to good account. At his feet sat many a disciple, to whom he taught the mystery of hunting and of chivalry (3)—to wit, Cephalus, Asclepius, Melanion, Nestor, Amphiaraus, Peleus, Telamon, Meleager, Theseus and Hippolytus, Palamedes, Odysseus, Menestheus, Diomed, Castor and Polydeuces, Machaon and Podaleirius, Antilochus, Aeneas and Achilles: of whom each in his turn was honoured by the gods. And let none marvel that of these the greater part, albeit well-pleasing to the gods, nevertheless were subject to death—which is the way of nature, (4) but their fame has grown—nor yet that their prime of manhood so far differed. The lifetime of Cheiron sufficed for all his scholars; the fact being that Zeus and Cheiron were brethren, sons of the same father but of different mothers—Zeus of Rhea, and Cheiron of the nymph Nais; (5) and so it is that, though older than all of them, he died not before he had taught the youngest—to wit, the boy Achilles. (6)

(1) Or, "This thing is the invention of no mortal man, but of Apollo and Artemis, to whom belong hunting and dogs." For the style of exordium L. Dind. cf (Ps.) Dion. "Art. rhet." ad in.; Galen, "Isagog." ad in.; Alex. Aphrodis. "Probl." 2 proem.

(2) The wisest and "justest of all the centaurs," Hom. "Il." xi. 831. See Kingsley, "The Heroes," p. 84.

(3) Or, "the discipline of the hunting field and other noble lore."

(4) Lit. "since that is nature, but the praise of them grew greatly."

(5) According to others, Philyra. Pind. "Pyth." iii. 1, {ethelon Kheirona ke Philuridan}; cf. "Pyth." vi. 22; "Nem." iii. 43.

(6) See Paus. iii. 18. 12.

Thanks to the careful heed they paid to dogs and things pertaining to the chase, thanks also to the other training of their boyhood, all these greatly excelled, and on the score of virtue were admired.

If Cephalus was caught into the arms of one that was a goddess, (7) Asclepius (8) obtained yet greater honour. To him it was given to raise the dead and to heal the sick, whereby, (9) even as a god among mortal men, he has obtained to himself imperishable glory. Melanion (10) so far excelled in zest for toil that he alone of all that flower of chivalry who were his rivals (11) obtained the prize of noblest wedlock with Atalanta; while as to Nestor, what need to repeat the well-known tale? so far and wide for many a day has the fame of his virtue penetrated the ears of Hellas. (12)

(7) Hemera (al. Eos). For the rape of Cephalus see Hes. "Theog." 986; Eur. "Ion," 269; Paus. i. 3. 1; iii. 18. 7.

(8) Lat. Aesculapius. Father of Podaleirius and Machaon, "the noble leech," "Il." ii. 731, iv. 194, 219, xi. 518; "Od." iv. 232.

(9) Cf. "Anab." I. ii. 8; Lincke, "z. Xen. Krit." p. 299.

(10) Melanion, s. Meilanion, Paus. iii. 12. 9; v. 17. 10; v. 19. 1.

(11) "Which were his rival suitors." As to Atalanta see Paus. viii. 45. 2; iii. 24. 2; v. 19. 2; Grote, "H. G." i. 199 foll.

(12) Lit. "the virtue of Nestor has so far penetrated the ears of Hellas that I should speak to those who know." See Hom. "Il." i. 247, and passim.

Amphiaraus, (13) what time he served as a warrior against Thebes, won for himself the highest praise; and from heaven obtained the honour of a deathless life. (14)

(13) Amphiaraus. Pind. "Nem." ix. 13-27; "Olymp." vi. 11-16; Herod. i. 52; Paus. ix. 8. 2; 18. 2-4; ii. 23.2; i. 34; Liv. xlv. 27; Cic. "de Div." i. 40. See Aesch. "Sept. c. Th." 392; Eur. "Phoen." 1122 foll.; Apollod. iii. 6; Strab. ix. 399, 404.

(14) Lit. "to be honoured ever living."

Peleus kindled in the gods desire to give him Thetis, and to hymn their nuptials at the board of Cheiron. (15)

(15) For the marriage of Peleus and Thetis see Hom. "Il." xxiv. 61; cf. Pope's rendering:

To grace those nuptials from the bright abode Yourselves were present; when this minstrel god (Well pleased to share the feast) amid the quire Stood proud to hymn, and tune his youthful lyre ("Homer's Il." xxiv.)

Prof. Robinson Ellis ("Comment on Catull." lxiv.) cites numerous passages: Eur. "I. in T." 701 foll., 1036 foll.; Pind. "Isthm." v. 24; "Pyth." iii. 87-96; Isocr. "Evag." 192. 6; Apoll. Rh. iv. 791; "Il." xxiv. 61; Hes. "Theog." 1006, and "Epithal." (ap. Tsetz, "Prol. ad Lycophr."):

{tris makar Aiakide kai tetrakis olbie Peleu os toisd' en megarois ieron lekhos eisanabaineis}.

The mighty Telamon (16) won from the greatest of all states and wedded her whom he desired, Periboea the daughter of Alcathus; (17) and when the first of Hellenes, (18) Heracles (19) the son of Zeus, distributed rewards of valour after taking Troy, to Telamon he gave Hesione. (20)

(16) See "Il." viii. 283l Paus. i. 42. 1-4.

(17) Or Alcathous, who rebuilt the walls of Megara by Apollo's aid. Ov. "Met." viii. 15 foll.

(18) Reading {o protos}; or if with L. D. {tois protois}, "what time Heracles was distributing to the heroes of Hellas (lit. the first of the Hellenes) prizes of valour, to Telamon he gave."

(19) See Hom. "Il." v. 640; Strab. xiii. 595.

(20) See Diod. iv. 32; i. 42.

Of Meleager (21) be it said, whereas the honours which he won are manifest, the misfortunes on which he fell, when his father (22) in old age forgot the goddess, were not of his own causing. (23)

(21) For the legend of Meleager see "Il." ix. 524-599, dramatised by both Sophocles and Euripides, and in our day by Swinburne, "Atalanta in Calydon." Cf. Paus. iii. 8. 9; viii. 54. 4; Ov. "Met." viii. 300; Grote, "H. G." i. 195.

(22) i.e. Oeneus. "Il." ix. 535.

(23) Or, "may not be laid to his charge."

Theseus (24) single-handed destroyed the enemies of collective Hellas; and in that he greatly enlarged the boundaries of his fatherland, is still to-day the wonder of mankind. (25)

(24) See "Mem." II. i. 14; III. v. 10; cf. Isocr. "Phil." 111; Plut. "Thes." x. foll.; Diod. iv. 59; Ov. "Met." vii. 433.

(25) Or, "is held in admiration still to-day." See Thuc. ii. 15; Strab. ix. 397.

Hippolytus (26) was honoured by our lady Artemis and with her conversed, (27) and in his latter end, by reason of his sobriety and holiness, was reckoned among the blest.

(26) See the play of Euripides. Paus. i. 22; Diod. iv. 62.

(27) Al. "lived on the lips of men." But cf. Eur. "Hipp." 85, {soi kai xeneimi kai logois s' ameibomai}. See Frazer, "Golden Bough," i. 6, for the Hippolytus-Virbius myth.

Palamedes (28) all his days on earth far outshone those of his own times in wisdom, and when slain unjustly, won from heaven a vengeance such as no other mortal man may boast of. (29) Yet died he not at their hands (30) whom some suppose; else how could the one of them have been accounted all but best, and the other a compeer of the good? No, not they, but base men wrought that deed.

(28) As to Palamedes, son of Nauplius, his genius and treacherous death, see Grote, "H. G." i. 400; "Mem." IV. ii. 33; "Apol." 26; Plat. "Apol." 41; "Rep." vii. 522; Eur. fr. "Palam."; Ov. "Met." xiii. 56; Paus. x. 31. 1; ii. 20. 3.

(29) For the vengeance see Schol. ad Eur. "Orest." 422; Philostr. "Her." x. Cf. Strab. viii. 6. 2 (368); Leake, "Morea," ii. 358; Baedeker, "Greece," 245.

(30) i.e. Odysseus and Diomed. (S. 11, I confess, strikes me as somewhat in Xenophon's manner.) See "Mem." IV. ii. 33; "Apol." 26.

Menestheus, (31) through diligence and patient care, the outcome of the chase, so far overshot all men in love of toil that even the chiefs of Hellas must confess themselves inferior in the concerns of war save Nestor only; and Nestor, it is said, (32) excelled not but alone might rival him.

(31) For Menestheus, who led the Athenians against Troy, cf. Hom. "Il." ii. 552; iv. 327; Philostr. "Her." ii. 16; Paus. ii. 25. 6; i. 17. 6; Plut. "Thes." 32, 35.

(32) Or, "so runs the tale," e.g. in "The Catalogue." See "Il." ii. l.c.: {Nestor oios erizen}, "Only Nestor rivalled him, for he was the elder by birth" (W. Leaf).

Odysseus and Diomedes (33) were brilliant for many a single deed of arms, and mainly to these two was due the taking of Troy town. (34)

(33) The two heroes are frequently coupled in Homer, e.g. "Il." v. 519; x. 241, etc.

(34) Or, "were brilliant in single points, and broadly speaking were the cause that Troy was taken." See Hygin. "Fab." 108; Virg. "Aen." ii. 163.

Castor and Polydeuces, (35) by reason of their glorious display of arts obtained from Cheiron, and for the high honour and prestige therefrom derived, are now immortal.

(35) Castor, Polydeuces, s. Pollux—the great twin brethren. See Grote, "H. G." i. 232 foll.

Machaon and Podaleirius (36) were trained in this same lore, and proved themselves adepts in works of skill, in argument and feats of arms. (37)

(36) As to the two sons of Asclepius, Machaon and Podaleirius, the leaders of the Achaeans, see "Il." ii. 728; Schol. ad Pind. "Pyth." iii. 14; Paus. iii. 26; iv. 3; Strab. vi. 4 (284); Diod. iv. 71. 4; Grote, "H. G." i. 248.

(37) Or, "in crafts, in reasonings, and in deeds of war."

Antilochus, (38) in that he died for his father, obtained so great a glory that, in the judgment of Hellas, to him alone belongs the title "philopator," "who loved his father." (39)

(38) Antilochus, son of Nestor, slain by Memnon. "Od." iv. 186 foll.; Pind. "Pyth." vi. 28; Philostr. "Her." iv.; "Icon." ii. 281.

(39) Lit. "to be alone proclaimed Philopator among the Hellenes." Cf. Plat. "Laws," 730 D, "He shall be proclaimed the great and perfect citizen, and bear away the palm of virtue"; and for the epithet see Eur. "Or." 1605; "I. A." 68.

Aeneas (40) saved the ancestral gods—his father's and his mother's; (41) yea, and his own father also, whereby he bore off a reputation for piety so great that to him alone among all on whom they laid their conquering hand in Troy even the enemy granted not to be despoiled.

(40) As to Aeneas see Poseidon's speech, "Il." xx. 293 foll.; Grote, "H. G." i. 413, 427 foll.

(41) Cf. "Hell." II. iv. 21.

Achilles, (42) lastly, being nursed in this same training, bequeathed to after-days memorials so fair, so ample, that to speak or hear concerning him no man wearies.

(42) "The highest form that floated before Greek imagination was Achilles," Hegel, "Lectures on the Philosophy of History" (Eng. tr. p. 233); and for a beautiful elaboration of that idea, J. A. Symonds, "Greek Poets," 2nd series, ch. ii.

Such, by dint of that painstaking care derived from Cheiron, these all proved themselves; of whom all good men yet still to-day are lovers and all base men envious. So much so that if throughout the length and breadth of Hellas misfortunes at any time befell city or king, it was they who loosed the knot of them; (43) or if all Hellas found herself confronted with the hosts of the Barbarians in strife and battle, once again it was these who nerved the arms of Hellenes to victory and rendered Hellas unconquered and unconquerable.

(43) Reading {eluonto autous}, or if as L. D., {di autous}, transl. "thanks to them, they were loosed."

For my part, then, my advice to the young is, do not despise hunting or the other training of your boyhood, if you desire to grow up to be good men, good not only in war but in all else of which the issue is perfection in thought, word, and deed.


The first efforts of a youth emerging from boyhood should be directed to the institution of the chase, after which he should come to the rest of education, provided he have the means and with an eye to the same; if his means be ample, in a style worthy of the profit to be derived; or, if they be scant, let him at any rate contribute enthusiasm, in nothing falling short of the power he possesses.

What are the aids and implements of divers sorts with which he who would enter on this field must equip himself? These and the theory of each in particular I will now explain. With a view to success in the work, forewarned is forearmed. Nor let such details be looked upon as insignificant. Without them there will be an end to practical results. (1)

(1) Or, "The question suggests itself—how many instruments and of what sort are required by any one wishing to enter this field? A list of these I propose to give, not omitting the theoretical side of the matter in each case, so that whoever lays his hand to this work may have some knowledge to go upon. It would be a mistake to regard these details as trivial. In fact, without them the undertaking might as well be let alone."

The net-keeper should be a man with a real passion for the work, and in tongue a Hellene, about twenty years of age, of wiry build, agile at once and strong, with pluck enough to overcome the toils imposed on him, (2) and to take pleasure in the work.

(2) {toutous}, "by this, that, or the other good quality."

The ordinary small nets should be made of fine Phasian or Carthaginian (3) flax, and so too should the road nets and the larger hayes. (4) These small nets should be nine-threaded (made of three strandes, and each strand of three threads), (5) five spans (6) in depth, (7) and two palms (8) at the nooses or pockets. (9) There should be no knots in the cords that run round, which should be so inserted as to run quite smoothly. (10) The road net should be twelve-threaded, and the larger net (or haye) sixteen. They may be of different sizes, the former varying from twelve to twenty-four or thirty feet, the latter from sixty to one hundred and twenty or one hundred and eighty feet. (11) If larger they will be unwieldy and hard to manage. Both should be thirty-knotted, and the interval of the nooses the same as in the ordinary small nets. At the elbow ends (12) the road net should be furnished with nipples (13) (or eyes), and the larger sort (the haye) with rings, and both alike with a running line of twisted cord. The pronged stakes (14) for the small nets should be ten palms high, (15) as a rule, but there should be some shorter ones besides; those of unequal length will be convenient to equalise the height on uneven ground, and those of equal length on level. They should be sharp-tipped so as to draw out easily (16) and smooth throughout. Those for the road nets should be twice the height, (17) and those for the big (haye) nets five spans long, (18) with small forks, the notches not deep; they should be stout and solid, of a thickness proportionate to their length. The number of props needed for the nets will vary—many or few, according to circumstances; a less number if the tension on the net be great, and a larger number when the nets are slack. (19)

(3) Phasian or Carchedonian. Cf. Pollux, v. 26.

(4) {arkus, enodia, diktua}.

(5) (L. Dind. brackets.) See Pollux, v. 27, ap. Schn.

(6) {spithame}, a span (dodrans) = 7 1/2 inches. Herod. ii. 106; {trispithamos}, Hes. "Op." 424; Plat. "Alc." i. 126 C; Aristot. "H. A." viii. 28. 5; Polyb. v. 3-6.

(7) {to megethos}.

(8) Or, "eight fingers' breadth +" = 6 inches +. {palaiste} or {palaste}, a palm or four fingers' breadth = 3 inches +.

(9) {tous brokhous}, a purse or tunnel arrangement with slip loop.

(10) Reading {upheisthosan de oi peridromoi anammatoi}. Lit. "the cords that run round should be inserted without knots." See Pollux, v. 28 foll.

(11) Lit. "2, 4, 5 fathoms; 10, 20, 30 fathoms."

(12) {akroleniois}, elbows, Pollux, v. 29; al. {akroliniois}, L. & S., "on the edges or borders."

(13) {mastous}, al. "tufts."

(14) {skhalides}, forks or net props. Cf. Pollux, v. 19. 31.

(15) i.e. 30 + inches = 2 1/2 + ft., say 36 inches = 3 ft.

(16) {euperispastoi ta akra}, al. "they should be made so that the nets can be fitted on and off easily, with sharp points"; or "off the points easily."

(17) {siplasiai}, i.e. 20 palms = 60 + inches, say 72, or 6 ft.

(18) {pentespithamoi}, i.e. 5 x 7 1/2 inches = 37 1/2 inches = 3 ft. 1 1/2 inch; al. 5 x 9 inches = 45 inches = 3 ft. 9 inches.

(19) Or, "if in the particular position the nets are taut, a larger if they lie slack."

Lastly, for the purpose of carrying the nets and hayes, for either sort (20) there must be a bag of calf-skin; and billhooks to cut down branches and stop gaps in the woods when necessary. (21)

(20) Reading, with Lenz, {ekaterois}, or if, as C. Gesner conj., {e ekatera}, transl. "or either separately."

(21) Or, "for the purpose of felling wood and stopping up gaps where necessary."


There are two breeds of sporting dogs: the Castorian and the fox-like. (1) The former get their name from Castor, in memory of the delight he took in the business of the chase, for which he kept this breed by preference. (2) The other breed is literally foxy, being the progeny originally of the dog and the fox, whose natures have in the course of ages become blent. (3)

(1) {Kastoriai}, or Laconian, approaching possibly the harrier type; {alopekides}, i.e. vulpocanine, hybrid between fox and dog.

(2) Or, "get their appellation from the fact that Castor took delight in the business of the chase, and kept this breed specially for the purpose." Al. {diephulaxen}, "propagated and preserved the breed which we now have." See Darwin, "Animals and Plants under Domestication," ii. 202, 209.

(3) Or, "and through lapse of time the twofold characteristics of their progenitors have become blent." See Timoth. Gaz. ap. Schneid. ad loc. for an ancient superstition as to breeds.

Both species present a large proportion of defective animals (4) which fall short of the type, as being under-sized, or crook-nosed, (5) or gray-eyed, (6) or near-sighted, or ungainly, or stiff-jointed, or deficient in strength, thin-haired, lanky, disproportioned, devoid of pluck or of nose, or unsound of foot. To particularise: an under-sized dog will, ten to one, break off from the chase (7) faint and flagging in the performance of his duty owing to mere diminutiveness. An aquiline nose means no mouth, and consequently an inability to hold the hare fast. (8) A blinking bluish eye implies defect of vision; (9) just as want of shape means ugliness. (10) The stiff-limbed dog will come home limping from the hunting-field; (11) just as want of strength and thinness of coat go hand in hand with incapacity for toil. (12) The lanky-legged, unsymmetrical dog, with his shambling gait and ill-compacted frame, ranges heavily; while the spiritless animal will leave his work to skulk off out of the sun into shade and lie down. Want of nose means scenting the hare with difficulty, or only once in a way; and however courageous he may be, a hound with unsound feet cannot stand the work, but through foot-soreness will eventually give in. (13)

(4) Or, "defective specimens (that is to say, the majority) are to be noted, as follows."

(5) {grupai}.

(6) {kharopoi}. Al. Arrian, iv. 4, 5.

(7) Or, "will probably retire from the chase and throw up the business through mere diminutiveness."

(8) Or, "a hook-nosed (? pig-jawed, see Stonehenge, "The Dog," p. 19, 4th ed.) dog has a bad mouth and cannot hold."

(9) Or, "a short-sighted, wall-eyed dog has defective vision."

(10) Or, "they are weedy, ugly brutes as a rule."

(11) Or, "stiffness of limbs means he will come off." Cf. "Mem." III. xiii. 6.

(12) Lit. "a weak, thinly-haired animal is incapable of severe toil."

(13) Or, "Nor will courage compensate for unsound feet. The toil and moil will be too great to endure, and owing to the pains in his feet he will in the end give in."

Similarly many different modes of hunting a line of scent are to be seen in the same species of hound. (14) One dog as soon as he has found the trail will go along without sign or symptom to show that he is on the scent; another will vibrate his ears only and keep his tail (15) perfectly still; while a third has just the opposite propensity: he will keep his ears still and wag with the tip of his tail. Others draw their ears together, and assuming a solemn air, (16) drop their tails, tuck them between their legs, and scour along the line. Many do nothing of the sort. (17) They tear madly about, babbling round the line when they light upon it, and senselessly trampling out the scent. Others again will make wide circuits and excursions; either forecasting the line, (18) they overshoot it and leave the hare itself behind, or every time they run against the line they fall to conjecture, and when they catch sight of the quarry are all in a tremor, (19) and will not advance a step till they see the creature begin to stir.

(14) Or, "Also the same dogs will exhibit many styles of coursing: one set as soon as they have got the trail pursue it without a sign, so there is no means of finding out that the animal is on the track."

(15) "Stern."

(16) Or "with their noses solemnly fixed on the ground and sterns lowered."

(17) Or, "have quite a different action"; "exhibit quite another manner."

(18) i.e. "they cast forwards to make short cuts," of skirters too lazy to run the line honestly.

(19) Reading {tremousi}, "fall a-trembling"; al. {atremousi}, stand "stock-still"; i.e. are "dwellers."

A particular sort may be described as hounds which, when hunting or pursuing, run forward with a frequent eye to the discoveries of the rest of the pack, because they have no confidence in themselves. Another sort is over-confident—not letting the cleverer members of the pack go on ahead, but keeping them back with nonsensical clamour. Others will wilfully hug every false scent, (20) and with a tremendous display of eagerness, whatever they chance upon, will take the lead, conscious all the while they are playing false; (21) whilst another sort again will behave in a precisely similar style out of sheer ignorance. (22) It is a poor sort of hound which will not leave a stale line (23) for want of recognising the true trail. So, too, a hound that cannot distinguish the trail leading to a hare's form, and scampers over that of a running hare, hot haste, is no thoroughbred. (24)

(20) Al. "seem to take pleasure in fondling every lie."

(21) Or, "fully aware themselves that the whole thing is a make- believe."

(22) Or, "do exactly the same thing because they do not know any better."

(23) {ek ton trimmon}. Lit. "keep away from beaten paths," and commonly of footpaths, but here apparently of the hare's habitual "run," not necessarily lately traversed, still less the true line.

(24) Lit. "A dog who on the one hand ignores the form track, and on the other tears swiftly over a running track, is not a well-bred dog." Al. {ta eunaia}, "traces of the form"; {ta dromaia}, "tracks of a running hare." See Sturz. s.v. {dromaios}.

When it comes to the actual chase, some hounds will show great ardour at first starting, but presently give up from weakness of spirit. Others will run in too hastily (25) and then balk; and go hopelessly astray, as if they had lost the sense of hearing altogether.

(25) So L. & S., {upotheousin} = "cut in before" the rest of the pack and over-run the scent. Al. "flash in for a time, and then lose the scent."

Many a hound will give up the chase and return from mere distaste for hunting, (26) and not a few from pure affection for mankind. Others with their clamorous yelping on the line do their best to deceive, as if true and false were all one to them. (27) There are others that will not do that, but which in the middle of their running, (28) should they catch the echo of a sound from some other quarter, will leave their own business and incontinently tear off towards it. (29) The fact is, (30) they run on without clear motive, some of them; others taking too much for granted; and a third set to suit their whims and fancies. Others simply play at hunting; or from pure jealousy, keep questing about beside the line, continually rushing along and tumbling over one another. (31)

(26) Or, {misotheron}, "out of antipathy to the quarry." For {philanthropon} cf. Pollux, ib. 64; Hermog. ap. L. Dind.

(27) Or, "unable apparently to distinguish false from true." See Sturz, s.v. {poieisthai}. Cf. Plut. "de Exil." 6. Al. "Gaily substituting false for true."

(28) "In the heat of the chase."

(29) "Rush to attack it."

(30) The fact is, there are as many different modes of following up the chase almost as there are dogs. Some follow up the chase {asaphos}, indistinctly; some {polu upolambanousai}, with a good deal of guess-work; others again {doxazousai}, without conviction, insincerely; others, {peplasmenos}, out of mere pretence, pure humbug, make-believe, or {phthoneros}, in a fit of jealousy, {ekkunousi}, are skirters; al. {ekkinousi}, Sturz, quit the scent.

(31) Al. "unceasingly tearing along, around, and about it."

The majority of these defects are due to natural disposition, though some must be assigned no doubt to want of scientific training. In either case such hounds are useless, and may well deter the keenest sportsman from the hunting field. (32)

(32) Or, "Naturally, dogs like these damp the sportsman's ardour, and indeed are enough to sicken him altogether with the chase."

The characters, bodily and other, exhibited by the finer specimens of the same breed, (33) I will now set forth.

(33) Or, "The features, points, qualities, whether physical or other, which characterise the better individuals." But what does Xenophon mean by {tou autou genous}?


In the first place, this true type of hound should be of large build; and, in the next place, furnished with a light small head, broad and flat in the snout, (1) well knit and sinewy, the lower part of the forehead puckered into strong wrinkles; eyes set well up (2) in the head, black and bright; forehead large and broad; the depression between the eyes pronounced; (3) ears long (4) and thin, without hair on the under side; neck long and flexible, freely moving on its pivot; (5) chest broad and fairly fleshy; shoulder-blades detached a little from the shoulders; (6) the shin-bones of the fore-legs should be small, straight, round, stout and strong; the elbows straight; ribs (7) not deep all along, but sloped away obliquely; the loins muscular, in size a mean between long and short, neither too flexible nor too stiff; (8) flanks, a mean between large and small; the hips (or "couples") rounded, fleshy behind, not tied together above, but firmly knitted on the inside; (9) the lower or under part of the belly (10) slack, and the belly itself the same, that is, hollow and sunken; tail long, straight, and pointed; (11) thighs (i.e. hams) stout and compact; shanks (i.e. lower thighs) long, round, and solid; hind-legs much longer than the fore-legs, and relatively lean; feet round and cat-like. (12)

(1) Pollux, v. 7; Arrian, "Cyn." iv.

(2) {meteora}, prominent.?See Sturz, s.v.

(3) {tas diakriseis batheias}, lit. "with a deep frontal sinus."

(4) Reading {makra}, or if {mikra}, "small."

(5) Al. "well rounded."

(6) "Shoulder blades standing out a little from the shoulders"; i.e. "free."

(7) i.e. "not wholly given up to depth, but well curved"; depth is not everything unless the ribs be also curved. Schneid. cf. Ov. "Met." iii. 216, "et substricta gerens Sicyonius ilia Ladon," where the poet is perhaps describing a greyhound, "chyned like a bream." See Stonehenge, pp. 21, 22. Xenophon's "Castorians" were more like the Welsh harrier in build, I presume.

(8) Or, "neither soft and spongy nor unyielding." See Stoneh., p. 23.

(9) "Drawn up underneath it," lit. "tucked up."

(10) Al. "flank," "flanks themselves."

(11) Or, as we should say, "stern." See Pollux, v. 59; Arrian, v. 9.

(12) See Stonehenge, p. 24 foll.

Hounds possessed of these points will be strong in build, and at the same time light and active; they will have symmetry at once and pace; a bright, beaming expression; and good mouths.

In following up scent, (13) see how they show their mettle by rapidly quitting beaten paths, keeping their heads sloping to the ground, smiling, as it were to greet the trail; see how they let their ears drop, how they keep moving their eyes to and fro quickly, flourishing their sterns. (14) Forwards they should go with many a circle towards the hare's form, (15) steadily guided by the line, all together. When they are close to the hare itself, they will make the fact plain to the huntsman by the quickened pace at which they run, as if they would let him know by their fury, by the motion of head and eyes, by rapid changes of gait and gesture, (16) now casting a glance back and now fixing their gaze steadily forward to the creature's hiding-place, (17) by twistings and turnings of the body, flinging themselves backwards, forwards, and sideways, and lastly, by the genuine exaltation of spirits, visible enough now, and the ecstasy of their pleasure, that they are close upon the quarry.

(13) Lit. "Let them follow up the trail."

(14) Lit. "fawning and wagging their tails."

(15) Lit. "bed" or "lair."

(16) Or, "by rapid shiftings of attitude, by looks now thrown backward and now forwards to the..." Reading {kai apo ton anablemmaton kai emblemmaton ton epi tas kathedras tou l.}, or if with L. D., {kai apo ton a. kai emblemmaton eis ton ulen kai anastremmaton ton epi tas k.}, transl. "now looking back at the huntsman and now staring hard into the covert, and again right-about-face in the direction of the hare's sitting-place."

(17) Lit. "form"; "the place where puss is seated."

Once she is off, the pack should pursue with vigour. (18) They must not relax their hold, but with yelp and bark full cry insist on keeping close and dogging puss at every turn. Twist for twist and turn for turn, they, too, must follow in a succession of swift and brilliant bursts, interrupted by frequent doublings; while ever and again they give tongue and yet again till the very welkin rings. (19) One thing they must not do, and that is, leave the scent and return crestfallen to the huntsman. (20)

(18) Lit. "let them follow up the chase vigorously, and not relax, with yelp and bark."

(19) {dikaios}, Sturz, "non temere"; "and not without good reason." Al. "a right good honest salvo of barks."

(20) Lit. "Let them not hark back to join the huntsman, and desert the trail."

Along with this build and method of working, hounds should possess four points. They should have pluck, sound feet, keen noses, and sleek coats. The spirited, plucky hound will prove his mettle by refusing to leave the chase, however stifling the weather; a good nose is shown by his capacity for scenting the hare on barren and dry ground exposed to the sun, and that when the orb is at the zenith; (21) soundness of foot in the fact that the dog may course over mountains during the same season, and yet his feet will not be torn to pieces; and a good coat means the possession of light, thick, soft, and silky hair. (22)

(21) i.e. "at mid-day"; or, "in the height of summer"; al. "during the dog-days"; "at the rising of the dog-star."

(22) See Pollux, ib. 59; Arrian, vi. 1.

As to the colour proper for a hound, (23) it should not be simply tawny, nor absolutely black or white, which is not a sign of breeding, but monotonous—a simplicity suggestive of the wild animal. (24) Accordingly the red dog should show a bloom of white hair about the muzzle, and so should the black, the white commonly showing red. On the top of the thigh the hair should be straight and thick, as also on the loins and on the lower portion of the stern, but of a moderate thickness only on the upper parts.

(23) See Stonehenge, p. 25; Darwin, op. cit. ii. 109.

(24) But see Pollux, ib. 65, who apparently read {gennaion touto to aploun alla therides}; al. Arrian, vi. See Jaques de Fouilloux, "La Venerie" (ap. E. Talbot, "Oeuvres completes de Xenophon," traduction, ii. 318).

There is a good deal to be said for taking your hounds frequently into the mountains; not so much for taking them on to cultivated land. (25) And for this reason: the fells offer facilities for hunting and for following the quarry without interruption, while cultivated land, owing to the number of cross roads and beaten paths, presents opportunities for neither. Moreover, quite apart from finding a hare, it is an excellent thing to take your dogs on to rough ground. It is there they will become sound of foot, and in general the benefit to their physique in working over such ground will amply repay you. (26)

(25) Or, "pretty often, and less frequently over."

(26) Lit. "they must be benefited in their bodies generally by working over such ground."

They should be taken out in summer till mid-day; in winter from sunrise to sundown; in autumn any time except mid-day; and in spring any time before evening. These times will hit the mean of temperature. (27)

(27) Or, "You may count on a moderate temperature at these times."


The tracks of hares are long in winter owing to the length of night, and short for the opposite reason during summer. In winter, however, their scent does not lie in early morning, when the rime is on the ground, or earth is frozen. (1) The fact is, hoar frost by its own inherent force absorbs its heat, whilst black frost freezes it. (2)

(1) Or, "when there is hoar frost or black frost" (lit. "ice").

(2) Or, "the ice congeals them," "encases as it were in itself the heat," i.e. the warm scent; aliter, "causes the tracks to freeze at the top."

The hounds, moreover, with their noses nipped by the cold, (3) cannot under these conditions (4) use their sense of smell, until the sun or the mere advance of day dissolves the scent. Then the noses of the hounds recover, and the scent of the trail begins to exhale itself perceptibly. (5)

(3) Reading {malkiosai}, Cobet, "N. Lect." 131. "Mnem." 3, 306; Rutherford, "N. Phry." p. 135. = "nipped, or numb with cold." For vulg. {malakiosai} = "whose noses are tender," see Lenz ad loc.

(4) Lit. "when the tracks are in this case."

(5) As it evaporates. Aliter, "is perceptible to smell as it is wafted by the breeze to greet them."

Heavy dews also will obliterate scent by its depressing effect; (6) and rains occurring after long intervals, while bringing out odours from the earth, (7) will render the soil bad for scent until it dries again. Southerly winds will not improve scent—being moisture-laden they disperse it; whereas northerly winds, provided the scent has not been previously destroyed, tend to fix and preserve it. Rains will drown and wash it away, and so will drizzle; while the moon by her heat (8)—especially a full moon—will dull its edge; in fact the trail is rarest—most irregular (9)—at such times, for the hares in their joy at the light with frolic and gambol (10) literally throw themselves high into the air and set long intervals between one footfall and another. Or again, the trail will become confused and misleading when crossed by that of foxes. (11)

(6) Cf. Plut. "Q. Nat." 917 F, ap. Schneid.

(7) Cf. Theophr. "C. Pl." xix. 5, 6; xx. 4.

(8) Reading {to thermo}. Aristot. "Gen. An." iv. 10. Zeune cf. Plut. "Symp." iii. 10, 657. Macrob. "Sat." vii. 16; Athen. 276 E. Al. {to thermon}. See Lenz ad loc., "the moon, especially a full moon, dulls the heat (or odour) of the tracks."

(9) Cf. Poll. v. 67; ib. 66.

(10) "Playing with one another, in the rivalry of sport."

(11) Lit. "when foxes have gone through before."

Spring with its tempered mildness is the season to render the scent clear, except where possibly the soil, bursting with flowers, may mislead the pack, by mingling the perfume of flowers with the true scent. (12) In summer scent is thin and indistinct; the earth being baked through and through absorbs the thinner warmth inherent in the trail, while the dogs themselves are less keen scented at that season through the general relaxation of their bodies. (13) In autumn scent lies clean, all the products of the soil by that time, if cultivable, being already garnered, or, if wild, withered away with age, so that the odours of various fruits are no longer a disturbing cause through blowing on to the line. (14) In winter, summer, and autumn, moreover, as opposed to spring, the trail of a hare lies for the most part in straight lines, but in the earlier season it is highly complicated, for the little creatures are perpetually coupling and particularly at this season, so that of necessity as they roam together for the purpose they make the line intricate as described.

(12) i.e. "with the scent into a composite and confusing whole."

(13) Or, "owing to the relaxed condition of their frames."

(14) Lit. "The fruity odours do not, as commingling currents, injure the trail."

The scent of the line leading to the hare's form lies longer than that of a hare on the run, and for this reason: in proceeding to her form the hare keeps stopping, (15) the other is in rapid motion; consequently, the ground in one case is thickly saturated all along with scent, in the other sparsely and superficially. So, too, scent lies better in woody than on barren ground, since, whilst running to and fro or sitting up, the creature comes in contact with a variety of objects. Everything that earth produces or bears upon her bosom will serve as puss's resting-place. These are her screen, her couch, her canopy; (16) apart, it may be, or close at hand, or at some middle point, among them she lies ensconced. At times, with an effort taxing all her strength, she will spring across to where some jutting point or clinging undergrowth on sea or freshet may attract her.

(15) "The form tracks are made by the hare leisurely proceeding and stopping at times; those on the run quickly."

(16) Lit. "Anything and everything will serve to couch under, or above, within, beside, now at some distance off, and now hard by, and now midway between."

The couching hare (17) constructs her form for the most part in sheltered spots during cold weather and in shady thickets during the hot season, but in spring and autumn on ground exposed to the sun. Not so the running (18) animal, for the simple reason that she is scared out of her wits by the hounds. (19)

(17) "The form-frequenting hare."

(18) "Her roving congener," i.e. the hunted hare that squats. The distinction drawn is between the form chosen by the hare for her own comfort, and her squatting-place to escape the hounds when hunted.

(19) i.e. "the dogs have turned her head and made her as mad as a March hare."

In reclining the hare draws up the thighs under the flanks, (20) putting its fore-legs together, as a rule, and stretching them out, resting its chin on the tips of its feet. It spreads its ears out over the shoulder-blades, and so shelters the tender parts of its body; its hair serves as a protection, (21) being thick and of a downy texture. When awake it keeps on blinking its eyelids, (22) but when asleep the eyelids remain wide open and motionless, and the eyes rigidly fixed; during sleep it moves its nostrils frequently, if awake less often.

(20) Pollux, v. 72.

(21) Or, "as a waterproof."

(22) So Pollux, ib.

When the earth is bursting with new verdure, (23) fields and farm-lands rather than mountains are their habitat. (24) When tracked by the huntsman their habit is everywhere to await approach, except only in case of some excessive scare during the night, in which case they will be on the move.

(23) "When the ground teems with vegetation."

(24) Or, "they frequent cultivated lands," etc.

The fecundity of the hare is extraordinary. The female, having produced one litter, is on the point of producing a second when she is already impregnated for a third. (25)

(25) Re hyper-foetation cf. Pollux, v. 73, ap. Schneid.; Herod. iii. 108; Aristot. "H. A." iv. 5; Erastosthenes, "Catasterism," 34; Aelian, "V. H." ii. 12; Plin. "N. H." vii. 55.

The scent of the leveret lies stronger (26) than that of the grown animal. While the limbs are still soft and supple they trail full length on the ground. Every true sportsman, however, will leave these quite young creatures to roam freely. (27) "They are for the goddess." Full-grown yearlings will run their first chase very swiftly, (28) but they cannot keep up the pace; in spite of agility they lack strength.

(26) Cf. Pollux, v. 74.

(27) {aphiasi}, cf. Arrian, xxii. 1, "let them go free"; Aesch. "P. V." 666; Plat. "Prot." 320 A.

(28) Or, "will make the running over the first ring."

To find the trail you must work the dogs downwards through the cultivated lands, beginning at the top. Any hares that do not come into the tilled districts must be sought in the meadows and the glades; near rivulets, among the stones, or in woody ground. If the quarry makes off, (29) there should be no shouting, that the hounds may not grow too eager and fail to discover the line. When found by the hounds, and the chase has begun, the hare will at times cross streams, bend and double and creep for shelter into clefts and crannied lurking-places; (30) since they have not only the hounds to dread, but eagles also; and, so long as they are yearlings, are apt to be carried off in the clutches of these birds, in the act of crossing some slope or bare hillside. When they are bigger they have the hounds after them to hunt them down and make away with them. The fleetest-footed would appear to be those of the low marsh lands. The vagabond kind (31) addicted to every sort of ground are difficult to hunt, for they know the short cuts, running chiefly up steeps or across flats, over inequalities unequally, and downhill scarcely at all.

(29) Or, "shifts her ground."

(30) Or, "in their terror not of dogs only, but of eagles, since up to a year old they are liable to be seized by these birds of prey while crossing some bottom or bare ground, while if bigger..."

(31) {oi... planetai}, see Ael. op. cit. xiii. 14.

Whilst being hunted they are most visible in crossing ground that has been turned up by the plough, if, that is, they have any trace of red about them, or through stubble, owing to reflection. So, too, they are visible enough on beaten paths or roads, presuming these are fairly level, since the bright hue of their coats lights up by contrast. On the other hand, they are not noticeable when they seek the cover of rocks, hills, screes, or scrub, owing to similarity of colour. Getting a fair start of the hounds, they will stop short, sit up and rise themselves up on their haunches, (32) and listen for any bark or other clamour of the hounds hard by; and when the sound reaches them, off and away they go. At times, too, without hearing, merely fancying or persuading themselves that they hear the hounds, they will fall to skipping backwards and forwards along the same trail, (33) interchanging leaps, and interlacing lines of scent, (34) and so make off and away.

(32) Cf. the German "Mannerchen machen," "play the mannikin." Shaks. "V. and A." 697 foll.

(33) Passage imitated by Arrian, xvi. 1.

(34) Lit. "imprinting track upon track," but it is better perhaps to avoid the language of woodcraft at this point.

These animals will give the longest run when found upon the open, there being nothing there to screen the view; the shortest run when started out of thickets, where the very darkness is an obstacle.

There are two distinct kinds of hare—the big kind, which is somewhat dark in colour (35) with a large white patch on the forehead; and the smaller kind, which is yellow-brown with only a little white. The tail of the former kind is variegated in a circle; of the other, white at the side. (36) The eyes of the large kind are slightly inclined to gray; (37) of the smaller, bluish. The black about the tips of the ears is largely spread in the one, but slightly in the other species. Of these two species, the smaller is to be met with in most of the islands, desert and inhabited alike. As regards numbers they are more abundant in the islands than on the mainland; the fact being that in most of these there are no foxes to attack and carry off either the grown animal or its young; nor yet eagles, whose habitat is on lofty mountains rather than the lower type of hills which characterise the islands. (38) Again, sportsmen seldom visit the desert islands, and as to those which are inhabited, the population is but thinly scattered and the folk themselves not addicted to the chase; while in the case of the sacred islands, (39) the importation of dogs is not allowed. If, then, we consider what a small proportion of hares existent at the moment will be hunted down and again the steady increase of the stock through reproduction, the enormous numbers will not be surprising. (40)

(35) {epiperknoi}. Cf. Pollux, v. 67 foll., "mottled with black." Blane.

(36) Reading {paraseiron}, perhaps "mottled"; vulg. {paraseron}. Al. {parasuron}, "ecourtee," Gail.

(37) {upokharopoi}, "subfulvi," Sturz, i.e. "inclined to tawny"; al. "fairly lustrous." Cf. {ommata moi glaukas kharopotera pollon 'Athanas}, Theocr. xx. 25; but see Aristot. "H. A." i. 10; "Gen. An." v. 1. 20.

(38) Lit. "and those on the islands are for the most part of low altitude."

(39) e.g. Delos. See Strab. x. 456; Plut. "Mor." 290 B; and so Lagia, Plin. iv. 12.

(40) Lit. "As the inhabitants hunt down but a few of them, these constantly being added to by reproduction, there must needs be a large number of them."

The hare has not a keen sight for many reasons. To begin with, its eyes are set too prominently on the skull, and the eyelids are clipped and blear, (41) and afford no protection to the pupils. (42) Naturally the sight is indistinct and purblind. (43) Along with which, although asleep, for the most part it does not enjoy visual repose. (44) Again, its very fleetness of foot contributes largely towards dim-sightedness. It can only take a rapid glance at things in passing, and then off before perceiving what the particular object is. (45)

(41) Or, "defective."

(42) Al. "against the sun's rays."

(43) Or, "dull and mal-concentrated." See Pollux, v. 69.

(44) i.e. "its eyes are not rested, because it sleeps with them open."

(45) i.e. "it goes so quick, that before it can notice what the particular object is, it must avert its gaze to the next, and then the next, and so on."

The alarm, too, of those hounds for ever at its heels pursuing combines with everything (46) to rob the creature of all prescience; so that for this reason alone it will run its head into a hundred dangers unawares, and fall into the toils. If it held on its course uphill, (47) it would seldom meet with such a fate; but now, through its propensity to circle round and its attachment to the place where it was born and bred, it courts destruction. Owing to its speed it is not often overtaken by the hounds by fair hunting. (48) When caught, it is the victim of a misfortune alien to its physical nature.

(46) {meta touton}, sc. "with these other causes"; al. "with the dogs"; i.e. "like a second nightmare pack."

(47) Reading {orthion}, or if {orthon}, transl. "straight on."

(48) {kata podas}, i.e. "by running down"; cf. "Mem." II. vi. 9; "Cyrop." I. vi. 40, re two kinds of hound: the one for scent, the other for speed.

The fact is, there is no other animal of equal size which is at all its match in speed. Witness the conformation of its body: the light, small drooping head (narrow in front); (49) the (thin cylindrical) (50) neck, not stiff and of a moderate length; straight shoulder-blades, loosely slung above; the fore-legs attached to them, light and set close together; (51) the undistended chest; (52) the light symmetrical sides; the supple, well-rounded loins; the fleshy buttocks; the somewhat sunken flanks; (53) the hips, well rounded, plump at every part, but with a proper interval above; the long and solid thighs, on the outside tense and not too flabby on the inside; the long, stout lower legs or shanks; the fore-feet, exceedingly pliant, thin, and straight; the hind-feet firm and broad; front and hind alike totally regardless of rough ground; the hind-legs far longer than the fore, inclined outwards somewhat; the fur (54) short and light.

(49) Reading {katophere (stenen ek tou emprosthen)}. See Lenz ad loc. pp. 23, 24. Pollux, v. 69.

(50) Reading { (lepton, periphere)}.

(51) {sugkola}, al. "compactly knit."

(52) Lit. {ou barutonon}, "not deep sounding" = {ou sarkodes}, Pollux, ib.

(53) Reading {lagonas ugras lagaras ikanos}.

(54) {trikhona}, "the coat."

I say an animal so happily constructed must needs be strong and pliant; the perfection of lightness and agility. If proof of this lightness and agility be needed, here is a fact in illustration. When proceeding quietly, its method of progression is by leaps; no one ever saw or is likely to see a hare walking. What it does is to place the hind-feet in front of the fore-feet and outside them, and so to run, if running one can call it. The action prints itself plainly on snow. The tail is not conducive to swiftness of pace, being ill adapted by its stumpiness to act as a rudder to direct the body. The animal has to do this by means of one or other ear; (55) as may be seen, when she is on the point of being caught by the hounds. (56) At that instant you may see her drop and shoot out aslant one of her ears towards the point of attack, and then, apparently throwing her full weight on that pivot, turn sharp round and in a moment leave her assailants far behind.

(55) So Ael. "N. A." xiii. 14.

(56) Pollux, v. 71. For punctuation, see Lenz ad loc. p. 25.

So winsome a creature is it, that to note the whole of the proceedings from the start—the quest by scent, the find, the pack in pursuit full cry, the final capture—a man might well forget all other loves. (57)

(57) See Arrian, xvi. 6, his criticism. Schneid. cf. Plut. "Mor." 1096 C. Hermog. iii. 319, 11, ed. Walz.

Here it should be added that the sportsman, who finds himself on cultivated lands, should rigidly keep his hands off the fruits of the season, and leave springs and streams alone. To meddle with them is ugly and base, not to speak of the bad example of lawlessness set to the beholder. During the close season (58) all hunting gear should be taken down and put away.

(58) Al. "wahrend der Jagdferien," Lenz; "on Sundays," as we might say. See some remarks on S. 34 in "Hellenica Essays," "Xenophon," p. 349.


The equipment of the dogs consists of collar straps, leashes, and surcingles, (1) and the collar should be broad and soft so as not to rub the dog's coat; the leash should have a noose for the hand, (2) and nothing else. The plan of making collar and leash all in one is a clumsy contrivance for keeping a hound in check. (3) The surcingle should be broad in the thongs so as not to gall the hound's flanks, and with spurs stitched on to the leather, to preserve the purity of the breed. (4)

(1) {stelmoniai}, al. {telamonias}, broad belts or girths, corselets. Pollux, v. 55.

(2) Pollux, v. 56.

(3) Lit. "since those who make the collar out of the leash do not keep hold (al. take care) of their hounds well."

(4) See "A Day with Xenophon's Harriers," "Macmillan's Mag." Jan. 1895, p. 183.

As to taking the hounds out to hunt, no hound ought to be taken out which refuses its food, a conclusive proof that the animal is ailing. Nor again, when a violent wind is blowing, for three good reasons: the scent will not lie, the hounds cannot smell, (5) neither the nets nor hayes will stand. In the absence, however, of any of these hindrances, take them out every other day. (6) Do not let your hounds get into the habit of hunting foxes. Nothing is so ruinous; and just at the moment when you want them, they will not be forthcoming. On the other hand, vary the hunting-ground in taking them out; which will give the pack a wider experience in hunting and their master a better knowledge of the country. The start should be early in the morning, unless the scent is to fail the hounds entirely. (7) The dilatory sportsman robs the pack of finding and himself of profit. (8) Subtle and delicate by nature, scent will not last all day.

(5) "You cannot trust the hound's nose."

(6) "Every third day," {dia trites tes emeras}.

(7) Lit. "in order that they may not be deprived of following up the scent."

(8) Or, "a late start means the hounds will be robbed of a find and the huntsman of his reward."

The net-keeper should wear a light costume. His business is to fix the nets about the runs, (9) paths, bends, and hollows, and darksome spots, brooks, dry torrents, or perennial mountain streams. These are the places to which the hare chiefly betakes itself for refuge; though there are of course endless others. These, and the side passages into, and exits from them, whether well marked or ill defined, are to be stopped just as day breaks; not too early, so that, in case the line of nets be in the neighbourhood of covert to be searched for game, (10) the animal may not be scared at hearing the thud close by. (11) If, on the contrary, there should be a wide gap between the two points, there is less to hinder making the net lines clear and clean quite early, so that nothing may cling to them. The keeper must fix the forked props slantwise, so as to stand the strain when subjected to tension. He must attach the nooses equally on the points; and see that the props are regularly fixed, raising the pouch towards the middle; (12) and into the slip-rope he must insert a large, long stone, to prevent the net from stretching in the opposite direction, when it has got the hare inside. He will fix the rows of poles with stretches of net sufficiently high to prevent the creature leaping over. (13) In hunting, "no procrastination" should be the motto, since it is sportsmanlike at once and a proof of energy by all means to effect a capture quickly. He will stretch the larger (haye) nets upon level spaces; and proceed to plant the road nets upon roads and at converging points of tracks and footpaths; (14) he must attach the border-ropes to the ground, draw together the elbows or side ends of the nets, fix the forked props between the upper meshes, (15) adjust the skirting ropes upon the tops, and close up gaps.

(9) See Pollux, v. 35.

(10) Al. "of the game to be hunted up."

(11) {omou}, "e propinquo." Schn. cf. "Cyrop." III. i. 2; VI. iii. 7.

(12) Or, "giving the funnel or belly a lift in the middle." {kekruphalon}, Pollux, v. 31.

(13) This sentence according to Lenz is out of its place, referring solely to the haye nets; the order of the words should be {ta de diktua teineto en apedois stoikhizeto de, k.t.l.} If so, transl. "He should stretch the hayes on level ground and fix, etc.; The road nets should be planted... etc."

(14) Al. "at convenient points or where paths converge." See Schneid. s.v. {sumpheronta}.

(15) {sardonion}, Pollux, v. 31. Al. "fixing the stakes between the edges."

Then he will play sentinel and go his rounds; if a prop or funnel wants supporting, he will set it up; and when the hare comes with the hounds behind her he will urge her forwards to the toils, with shout and halloa thundering at her heels. When she is fairly entangled, he is to calm the fury of the hounds, without touching them, by soothing, encouraging tones. He is also to signal to the huntsman with a shout, that the quarry is taken, or has escaped this side or that, or that he has not seen it, or where he last caught sight of it. (16)

(16) Or, "'caught,' 'escaped,' (this side or that), 'not seen,' 'marked.'"

The sportsman himself should sally forth in a loose, light hunting dress, (17) and footgear (18) to match; he should carry a stout stick in his hand, the net-keeper following. They should proceed to the hunting-field in silence, to prevent the hare, if by chance there should be one close by, from making off at the sound of voices. When they have reached the covert, he will tie the hounds to trees, each separately, so that they can be easily slipped from the leash, and proceed to fix the nets, funnel and hayes, as above described. When that is done, and while the net-keeper mounts guard, the master himself will take the hounds and sally forth to rouse the game. (19) Then with prayer and promise to Apollo and to Artemis, our Lady of the Chase, (20) to share with them the produce of spoil, he lets slip a single hound, the cunningest at scenting of the pack. (If it be winter, the hour will be sunrise, or if summer, before day-dawn, and in the other seasons at some hour midway.) As soon as the hound has unravelled the true line (21) he will let slip another; and then, if these carry on the line, at rapid intervals he will slip the others one by one; and himself follow, without too great hurry, (22) addressing each of the dogs by name every now and then, but not too frequently, for fear of over-exciting them before the proper moment.

(17) {emelemenen} = neglige, plain, unpretentious.

(18) Pollux, v. 18.

(19) Al. "intent on the working of the pack."

(20) "To thee thy share of this chase, Lord Apollo; and thine to thee, O Huntress Queen!"

(21) Or, "carries a line straight away from the many that interlace."

(22) Or, "without forcing the pace."

Meanwhile the hounds are busily at work; onwards they press with eager spirit, disentangling the line, double or treble, as the case may be. (23) To and fro they weave a curious web, (24) now across, now parallel with the line, (25) whose threads are interlaced, here overlapped, and here revolving in a circle; now straight, now crooked; here close, there rare; at one time clear enough, at another dimly owned. Past one another the hounds jostle—tails waving fast, ears dropt, and eyes flashing.

(23) "Discovering two or three scents, as the case may be"; "unravelling her line, be it single or double."

(24) {prophoreisthai} = {diazesthai}, Pollux, vii. 52. Schneid. cf. Aristoph. "Birds," 4, {apoloumeth' allos ten odon prophoroumeno}.

Still up and down, old sinner, must we pace; 'Twill kill us both, this vain, long, wearing race (Kennedy).

(25) See Arrian, xx. 2.

But when they are really close to the hare they will make the matter plain to the huntsman by various signs—the quivering of their bodies backwards and forwards, sterns and all; the ardour meaning business; the rush and emulaton; the hurry-scurry to be first; the patient following-up of the whole pack; at one moment massed together, and at another separated; and once again the steady onward rush. At last they have reached the hare's form, and are in the act to spring upon her. But she on a sudden will start up and bring about her ears the barking clamour of the whole pack as she makes off full speed. Then as the chase grows hot, the view halloo! of the huntsman may be heard: "So ho, good hounds! that's she! cleverly now, good hounds! so ho, good hounds!" (26) And so, wrapping his cloak (27) about his left arm, and snatching up his club, he joins the hounds in the race after the hare, taking care not to get in their way, (28) which would stop proceedings. (29) The hare, once off, is quickly out of sight of her pursuers; but, as a rule, will make a circuit back to the place where she was found. (30)

(26) Reading {io kunes, io kunes, sophos ge o kunes, kalos ge o kunes}. Al. {io kunes, io kakos} = "To her, dogs! that won't do!" "Ho, ho, Hunde! Ho, ho, falsch! Recht so, Hunde! schon so, Hunde!" (Lenz).

(27) {o ampekhetai}, "the shawl or plaid which he carries on his shoulders." See Pollux, v. 10.

(28) "Not to head the chase." Sir Alex. Grant, "Xen." p. 167.

(29) {aporon}, "which would be awkward" (see Arrian, xxv. 8).

(30) "Where the nets are set," Sir A. Grant. See his comment, l.c.

He must shout then to the keeper, "Mark her, boy, mark her! hey, lad! hey, lad!" and the latter will make known whether the hare is caught or not. Supposing the hare to be caught in her first ring, the huntsman has only to call in the hounds and beat up another. If not, his business is to follow up the pack full speed, and not give in, but on through thick and through thin, for toil is sweet. And if again they chance upon her in the chevy, (31) his cheery shout will be heard once more, "Right so! right so, hounds! forward on, good hounds!"

(31) {apantosi diokousai auton}, al. "come across the huntsman again."

But if the pack have got too long a start of him, and he cannot overtake them, however eagerly he follows up the hunt—perhaps he has altogether missed the chase, or even if they are ranging close and giving tongue and sticking to the scent, he cannot see them—still as he tears along he can interrogate the passer-by: "Hilloa there, have you seen my hounds?" he shouts, and having at length ascertained their whereabouts, if they are on the line, he will post himself close by, and cheer them on, repeating turn and turn about the name of every hound, and pitching the tone of his voice sharp or deep, soft or loud; and besides all other familiar calls, if the chase be on a hillside, (32) he can keep up their spirits with a constant "Well done, good hounds! well done, good hounds! good hounds!" Or if any are at fault, having overshot the line, he will call to them, "Back, hounds! back, will you! try back!"

(32) Or, "if the chase sweeps over a mountain-side."

As soon as the hounds have got back to (where they missed) the line, (33) he must cast them round, making many a circle to and fro; and where the line fails, he should plant a stake (34) as a sign-post to guide the eye, and so cast round the dogs from that point, (35) till they have found the right scent, with coaxing and encouragement. As soon as the line of scent is clear, (36) off go the dogs, throwing themselves on to it, springing from side to side, swarming together, conjecturing, and giving signs to one another, and taking bearings (37) they will not mistake—helter-skelter off they go in pursuit. Once they dart off along the line of scent thus hotly, the huntsman should keep up but without hurrying, or out of zeal they will overshoot the line. As soon as they are once more in close neighbourhood of the hare, and once again have given their master clear indications of the fact, then let him give what heed he can, she does not move off farther in sheer terror of the hounds.

(33) {prosstosi}, al. "whenever they check."

(34) Al. (1) "take a stake or one of the poles as a sign-post," (2) "draw a line on the ground."

(35) {suneirein}. Zeune cf. "Cyrop." VII. v. 6, "draw the dogs along by the nets." Blane.

(36) "As the scent grows warmer," the translator in "Macmillan's Mag." above referred to. Aristot. "H. A." ix. 44. 4.

(37) Lit. "fixing landmarks for themselves."

They meanwhile, with sterns wagging, tumbling and leaping over one another's backs, (38) at intervals loudly giving tongue, and lifting up their heads and peering into their master's face, as much as to say, "There is no mistake about it this time," (39) will presently of themselves start the hare and be after her full cry, with bark and clamour. (40) Thereupon, whether the hare falls into the toils of the funnel net or rushes past outside or inside, whatever incident betide, the net-keeper must with a shout proclaim the fact. Should the hare be caught, the huntsman has only to begin looking for another; if not, he must follow up the chase once more with like encouragement.

(38) Or, "whisking their tails and frisking wildly, and jostling against one another, and leaping over one another at a great rate." Al. "over one obstacle, and then another."

(39) Or, "this is the true line at last."

(40) Al. "with a crash of tongues."

When at length the hounds show symptoms of fatigue, and it is already late in the day, the time has come for the huntsman to look for his hare that lies dead-beat; nor must he wittingly leave any patch of green or clod of earth untested. (41) Backwards and forwards he must try and try again the ground, (42) to be sure that nothing has been overlooked. The fact is, the little creature lies in a small compass, and from fatigue and fear will not get up. As he leads the hounds on he will cheer and encourage them, addressing with many a soft term the docile creature, the self-willed, stubborn brute more rarely, and to a moderate extent the hound of average capacity, till he either succeeds in running down or driving into the toils some victim. (43) After which he will pick up his nets, both small and large alike, giving every hound a rub down, and return home from the hunting-field, taking care, if it should chance to be a summer's noon, to halt a bit, so that the feet of his hounds may not be blistered on the road.

(41) Lit. "anything which earth puts forth or bears upon her bosom."

(42) Or, "Many and many a cast back must he make."

(43) The famous stanzas in "Venus and Adonis" may fitly close this chapter.

And when thou hast on foot the purblind hare, Mark the poor wretch, to overshoot his troubles How he outruns the wind and with what care He cranks and crosses with a thousand doubles: The many musets through the which he goes Are like a labyrinth to amaze his foes.

Sometimes he runs among a flock of sheep, To make the cunning hounds mistake their smell, And sometimes where earth-delving conies keep, To stop the loud pursuers in their yell, And sometimes sorteth with a herd of deer: Danger deviseth shifts; wit waits on fear:

For there his smell with others being mingled, The hot scent-snuffing hounds are driven to doubt, Ceasing their clamorous cry till they have singled With much ado the cold fault cleanly out: Then do they spend their mouths: Echo replies, As if another chase were in the skies.

By this, poor Wat, far off upon a hill, Stands on his hinder legs with listening ear, To hearken if his foes pursue him still: Anon their loud alarums he doth hear; And now his grief may be compared well To one sore sick that hears the passing-bell.

Then shalt thou see the dew-bedabbled wretch Turn, and return, indenting with the way; Each envious brier his weary legs doth scratch, Each shadow makes him stop, each murmur stay: For misery is trodden on by many, And being low never relieved by any.


For breeding purposes choose winter, and release the bitches from hard work; (1) which will enable them to profit by repose and to produce a fine progeny towards spring, since that season is the best to promote the growth of the young dogs. The bitch is in heat for fourteen days, (2) and the moment at which to put her to the male, with a view to rapid and successful impregnation, is when the heat is passing off. Choose a good dog for the purpose. When the bitch is ready to whelp she should not be taken out hunting continuously, but at intervals sufficient to avoid a miscarriage through her over-love of toil. The period of gestation lasts for sixty days. When littered the puppies should be left to ther own dam, and not placed under another bitch; foster-nursing does not promote growth in the same way, whilst nothing is so good for them as their own mother's milk and her breath, (3) and the tenderness of her caresses. (4)

(1) Or, "Winter is the time at which to pair dogs for breeding, the bitches to be released from hard work, so that with the repose so secured they may produce a fine litter in spring."

(2) Lit. "this necessity holds." Cf. Aristot. "H. A." vi. 20; Arrian, xxvii., xxxi. 3.

(3) Cf. Eur. "Tro." 753, {o khrotos edu pneuma}.

(4) Cf. Arrian, xxx. 2; Pollux, v. 50; Columella, vii. 12, 12, ap. Schneid.

Presently, when the puppies are strong enough to roam about, they should be given milk (5) for a whole year, along with what will form their staple diet in the future, but nothing else. A heavy diet will distort the legs of a young dog, engender disease in other limbs, and the internal mechanism will get out of order. (6)

(5) See Arrian, xxxi.; Stonehenge, p. 264.

(6) Or, "the internal organs get wrong" ({adika}). Cf. "Memorabilia," IV. iv. 5.

They should have short names given them, which will be easy to call out. (7) The following may serve as specimens:—Psyche, Pluck, Buckler, Spigot, Lance, Lurcher, Watch, Keeper, Brigade, Fencer, Butcher, Blazer, Prowess, Craftsman, Forester, Counsellor, Spoiler, Hurry, Fury, Growler, Riot, Bloomer, Rome, Blossom, Hebe, Hilary, Jolity, Gazer, Eyebright, Much, Force, Trooper, Bustle, Bubbler, Rockdove, Stubborn, Yelp, Killer, Pele-mele, Strongboy, Sky, Sunbeam, Bodkin, Wistful, Gnome, Tracks, Dash. (8)

(7) Cf. Arrian, xxxi. 2; Oppian, "Cyn," i. 443; ap. Schneid.

(8) The following is Xenophon's list:—

{Psukhe} = Soul {Thumos} = Spirit {Porpax} = Hasp of shield {Sturax} = Spike of spear at the butt end {Logkhe} = Lance {Lokhos} = Ambush, or "Company" {Phroura} = Watch {Phulax} = Guard {Taxis} = Order, Rank, Post, Brigade {Xiphon} = Swordsman {Phonax} = Slaughterer, cf. "King Death" {Phlegon} = Blazer {'Alke} = Prowess, Victory {Teukhon} = Craftsman {'Uleus} = Woodsman, "Dashwood" {Medas} = Counsellor {Porthon} = Spoiler, "Rob Roy" {Sperkhon} = Hastener, "Rocket" {'Orge} = Fury, Rage {Bremon} = Growler, Roarer {'Ubris} = Hybris, Riot, Insolence {Thallon} = Blooming, "Gaudy" {'Rome} = Strength, "Romeo" {'Antheus} = Blossom {'Eba} = Youth {Getheus} = Gladsome {Khara} = Joy {Leusson} = Gazer {Augo} = Daybeam {Polus} = Much {Bia} = Force {Stikhon} = Stepping in rank and file {Spoude} = Much ado {Bruas} = Gusher {Oinas} = (1) Vine, (2) Rockdove. See Aristot. "H. A." v. 13, 14; i. 3, 10; Ael. "N. A." iv. 58. = Columba livia = rockdove, the colour of ripening grapes; al. {oinas} = the vine. {Sterros} = "Stiff," "King Sturdy" {Krauge} = Clamour. Cf. Plat. "Rep." 607 B. {Kainon} = Killer {Turbas} = "Topsy-turvy" {Sthenon} = Strong man {Aither} = Ether {'Aktis} = Ray of light {Aikhme} = Spear-point {Nors} = Clever (girl) {Gnome} = Maxim {Stibon} = Tracker {'Orme} = Dash. So Arrian ("Cyn." viii. 5) named his favourite hound.

For other names see Herodian, {peri mon. l} (on monosyllables), 12. 7; "Corp. Inscr." iv. p. 184, n. 8319; Arrian, v. 6, xix.; Colum. vii. 12, 13. According to Pollux, v. 47, Xenophon had a dog named {ippokentauros} (cf. "Cyrop." IV. iii. 17).

The young hounds may be taken out to the chase at the age of eight months (9) if bitches, or if males at the age of ten. They should not be let loose on the trail of a hare sitting, (10) but should be kept attached by long leashes and allowed to follow on a line while scenting, (11) with free scope to run along the trail. (12)

(9) Cf. Pollux, v. 54; al. Arrian, xxv., xxvi.

(10) Pollux, v. 12.

(11) "The dogs that are trailing," Blane.

(12) See Stonehenge, "Entering of greyhound and deerhound, of foxhounds and harriers," pp. 284, 285.

As soon as a hare is found, provided the young hounds have the right points (13) for running, they should not be let loose straight off: the huntsman should wait until the hare has got a good start and is out of sight, then let the young hounds go. (14) The result of letting slip young hounds, possessed of all the requisite points and full of pluck, (15) is that the sight of the hare will make them strain too violently and pull them to bits, (16) while their frames are as yet unknit; a catastrophe against which every sportsman should strenuously guard. If, on the other hand, the young hounds do not promise well for running, (17) there is no harm in letting them go. From the start they will give up all hope of striking the hare, and consequently escape the injury in question. (18)

(13) For points see the same authority: the harrier, p. 59; the foxhound, p. 54.

(14) See Arrian's comment and dissent, xxv. 4.

(15) Lit. "which are at once well shaped and have the spirit for the chase in them."

(16) Al. "they will overstrain themselves with the hare in sight, and break a blood-vessel." See Arrian, xxxi. 4, {regnuntai gar autais ai lagones}.

(17) Or, "are defectively built for the chase."

(18) Or, "will not suffer such mishap."

As to the trail of a hare on the run, there is no harm in letting them follow it up till they overtake her. (19) When the hare is caught the carcass should be given to the young hounds to tear in pieces. (20)

(19) Perhaps read {eos an thelosi}, "as long as they choose." The MSS. have {elthosi}.

(20) See Stonehenge, p. 287, "blooded, so as to make him understand the nature of the scent"; ib. 284.

As soon as these young hounds refuse to stay close to the nets and begin to scatter, they must be called back; till they have been accustomed to find the hare by following her up; or else, if not taught to quest for her (time after time) in proper style, they may end by becoming skirters (21)—a bad education. (22)

(21) {ekkunoi}, cf. Arrian, xxv. 5.

(22) {poneron mathema}, ib. 9.

As long as they are pups, they should have their food given them near the nets, when these are being taken up, (23) so that if from inexperience they should lose their way on the hunting-field, they may come back for it and not be altogether lost. In time they will be quit of this instinct themselves, (24) when their hostile feeling towards the animal is developed, and they will be more concerned about the quarry than disposed to give their food a thought. (25)

(23) {anairontai} sc. {ai arkues}, see above, vi. 26.

(24) Or, "abandon the practice."

(25) See Stonehenge, p. 289 (another context): "... the desire for game in a well-bred dog is much greater than the appetite for food, unless the stomach has long been deprived of it."

As a rule, the master should give the dogs their food with his own hand; since, however much the animal may be in want of food without his knowing who is to blame for that, it is impossible to have his hunger satisfied without his forming an affection for his benefactor. (26)

(26) Or, "If want in itself does not reveal to him the cause of his suffering, to be given food when hungry for it will arouse in him affection for the donor."


The time to track hares is after a fall of snow deep enough to conceal the ground completely. As long as there are black patches intermixed, the hare will be hard to find. It is true that outside these the tracks will remain visible for a long time, when the snow comes down with a north wind blowing, because the snow does not melt immediately; but if the wind be mild with gleams of sunshine, they will not last long, because the snow is quickly thawed. When it snows steadily and without intermission there is nothing to be done; the tracks will be covered up. Nor, again, if there be a strong wind blowing, which will whirl and drift the snow about and obliterate the tracks. It will not do to take the hounds into the field in that case; (1) since owing to excessive frost the snow will blister (2) the feet and noses of the dogs and destroy the hare's scent. Then is the time for the sportsman to take the haye nets and set off with a comrade up to the hills, and leave the cultivated lands behind; and when he has got upon the tracks to follow up the clue. If the tracks are much involved, and he follows them only to find himself back again ere along at the same place, (3) he must make a series of circuits and sweep round the medley of tracks, till he finds out where they really lead. (4)

(1) Lit. "I say it is no use setting out with dogs to this chase."

(2) {kaei}. Cf. Arrian, xiv. 5.

(3) Reading {ekonta} sc. {ton kunegeten...} or if {ekonta, kuklous} (sc. {ta ikhne}), transl. "if the tracks are involved, doubling on themselves and coming back eventually to the same place."

(4) Or, "where the end of the string is."

The hare makes many windings, being at a loss to find a resting-place, and at the same time she is accustomed to deal subtly (5) in her method of progression, because her footsteps lead perpetually to her pursuit.

(5) {tekhnazein}. Cf. Ael. "N. A." vi. 47, ap. Schneid. A fact for Uncle Remus.

As soon as the track is clear, (6) the huntsman will push on a little farther; and it will bring him either to some embowered spot (7) or craggy bank; since gusts of wind will drift the snow beyond such spots, whereby a store of couching-places (8) is reserved (9); and that is what puss seeks.

(6) "Discovered."

(7) "Thicket or overhanging crag."

(8) {eunasima}, "places well adapted for a form."

(9) Al. "many places suited for her form are left aside by puss, but this she seeks."

If the tracks conduct the huntsman to this kind of covert he had better not approach too near, for fear the creature should move off. Let him make a circuit round; the chances are that she is there; and that will soon be clear; for if so, the tracks will not trend outwards from the place at any point. (10)

(10) L. Dind. emend. {oudamoi}, "the tracks will not pass in any direction outwards from such ground."

And now when it is clear that puss is there, there let her bide; she will not sir; let him set off and seek another, before the tracks are indistinct; being careful only to note the time of day; so that, in case he discovers others, there will be daylight enough for him to set up the nets. (11) When the final moment has come, he will stretch the big haye nets round the first one and then the other victim (precisely as in the case of one of those black thawed patches above named), so as to enclose within the toils whatever the creature is resting on. (12) As soon as the nets are posted, up he must go and start her. If she contrive to extricate herself from the nets, (13) he must after her, following her tracks; and presently he will find himself at a second similar piece of ground (unless, as is not improbable, she smothers herself in the snow beforehand). (14) Accordingly he must discover where she is and spread his toils once more; and, if she has energy still left, pursue the chase. Even without the nets, caught she will be, from sheer fatigue, (15) owing to the depth of the snow, which balls itself under her shaggy feet and clings to her, a sheer dead weight.

(11) Al. "to envelop the victims in the nets."

(12) Lit. "whatever the creature is in contact with inside."

(13) Cf. Aesch. "Prom." 87, {Poto tropo tesd' ekkulisthesei tukhes}.

(14) Or, "if the creature is not first suffocated in the snow itself."

(15) See Pollux, v. 50. "She must presently be tired out in the heavy snow, which balls itself like a fatal clog clinging to the under part of her hairy feet."


For hunting fawns (1) and deer, (2) Indian dogs (3) should be employed, as being strong, large, and fleet-footed, and not devoid of spirit; with these points they will prove well equal to the toil.

(1) See Hom. "Il." xxii. 189, x. 361; "Od." iv. 35; Aelian, "N. A." xiv. 14; xvii. 26; Geopon. xix. 5.

(2) {e elaphos} (generic, Attic) = hart or hind, of roe (Capreolus caprea) or red (Cervus elaphus) deer alike, I suppose. See St. John, "Nat. Hist. and Sport in Moray."

(3) Of the Persian or Grecian greyhound type perhaps. See Aristot. "H. A." viii. 28; Aelian, "N. A." viii. 1; Pollux, v. 37, 38, 43; Plin. "H. N." vii. 2, viii. 28; Oppian, "Cyn." i. 413.

Quite young fawns (4) should be captured in spring, that being the season at which the dams calve. (5) Some one should go beforehand into the rank meadowlands (6) and reconnoitre where the hinds are congregated, and wherever that may be, the master of the hounds will set off—with his hounds and a supply of javelins—before daylight to the place in question. Here he will attach the hounds to trees (7) some distance off, for fear of their barking, (8) when they catch sight of the deer. That done he will choose a specular point himself and keep a sharp look-out. (9) As day breaks he will espy the hinds leading their fawns to the places where they will lay them severally to rest. (10) Having made them lie down and suckled them, they will cast anxious glances this way and that to see that no one watches them; and then they will severally withdraw to the side opposite and mount guard, each over her own offspring. The huntsman, who has seen it all, (11) will loose the dogs, and with javelins in hand himself advance towards the nearest fawn in the direction of where he saw it laid to rest; carefully noting the lie of the land, (12) for fear of making some mistake; since the place itself will present a very different aspect on approach from what it looked like at a distance.

(4) See above, v. 14. I do not know that any one has answered Schneider's question: Quidni sensum eundem servavit homo religiosus in hinnulis?

(5) "The fawns (of the roe deer) are born in the spring, usually early in May," Lydekker, "R. N. H." ii. p. 383; of the red deer "generally in the early part of June," ib. 346.

(6) {orgadas} = "gagnages," du Fouilloux, "Comment le veneur doit aller en queste aux taillis ou gaignages pour voir le cerf a veue," ap. Talbot, op. cit. i. p. 331.

(7) Or, "off the wood."

(8) It seems they were not trained to restrain themselves.

(9) Or, "set himself to observe from some higher place." Cf. Aristoph. "Wasps," 361, {nun de xun oplois} {andres oplitai diataxamenoi} {kata tas diodous skopiorountai}. Philostr. 784.

(10) See Pollux, v. 77; Aristot. "H. A." ix. 5. Mr. Scrope ap. Lydekker, "R. N. H." ii. p. 346, states that the dam of the red deer makes her offspring "lie down by a pressure of her nose," etc.

(11) Lit. "when he sees these things."

(12) Or, "the features of the scene"; "the topography."

When his eye has lit upon the object of his search, he will approach quite close. The fawn will keep perfectly still, glued (13) as it were to earth, and with loud bleats suffer itself to be picked up; unless it happen to be drenched with rain; in which case, it will not stay quiet in one place. No doubt, the internal moisture of the animal congeals quickly with the cold (14) and causes it to shift its ground. Caught in that case it must needs be; but the hounds will have work enough to run the creature down. (15) The huntsman having seized the fawn, will hand it to the keeper. The bleating will continue; and the hind, partly seeing and partly hearing, will bear down full tilt upon the man who has got her young, in her desire to rescue it. Now is the moment to urge on the hounds and ply the javelins. And so having mastered this one, he will proceed against the rest, and employ the same method of the chase in dealing with them.

(13) {piesas}, "noosling, nestling, buried."

(14) "The blood runs cold."

(15) Or, "but it will give them a good chase; the dogs will have their work cut out."

Young fawns may be captured in the way described. Those that are already big will give more trouble, since they graze with their mothers and the other deer, and when pursued retire in the middle of the herd or occasionally in front, but very seldom in the rear. The deer, moreover, in order to protect their young will do battle with the hounds and trample them under foot; so that capture is not easy, unless you come at once to close quarters and scatter the herd, with the result that one or another of the fawns is isolated. The effort implies (16) a strain, and the hounds will be left behind in the first heat of the race, since the very absence of their dams (17) will intensify the young deer's terror, and the speed of a fawn, that age and size, is quite incredible. (18) But at the second or third run they will be quickly captured; since their bodies being young and still unformed cannot hold out long against fatigue.

(16) Lit. "after that violent effort."

(17) Or, "alarm at the absence of the herd will lend the creature wings."

(18) Or, "is past compare"; "is beyond all telling."

Foot-gins (19) or caltrops may be set for deer on mountains, in the neighbourhood of meadows and streams and wooded glens, on cross-roads (20) or in tilled fields at spots which they frequent. (21) These gins should be made of twisted yew twigs (22) stripped of the bark to prevent their rotting. They should have well-rounded hooplike "crowns" (23) with alternate rows of nails of wood and iron woven into the coil. (24) The iron nails should be larger, so that while the wooden ones yield to the foot, the others may press into it. (25) The noose of the cord which will be laid upon "the crown" should be woven out of esparto and so should the rope itself, this kind of grass being least liable to rot. The rope and noose itself should both alike be stout. The log or clog of wood attached should be made of common or of holm oak with the bark on, three spans in length, and a palm in thickness. (26)

(19) {podostrabai}, podostrabai so called. Cf. "the boot."

(20) {en tais diodois}, "at points where paths issue," or "cross."

(21) {pros o ti prosie}, "against whatever they are likely to approach."

(22) Or, "should be woven out of Smilax"; "Ebenholz," Lenz; "Ifs," Gail.

(23) {tas de stephanas euk. ekh.} "having circular rims."

(24) {en to plokano} (al. {plokamo}) = the plaited rope, which formed the {stephane}. See Pollux, v. 32, ap. Schneid. and Lenz.

(25) Al. "so as to press into the foot, if the wooden ones yield."

(26) Or, "27 inches x 3."

To set the trap, dig a hole in the soil to a depth of fifteen inches, (27) circular in shape, with a circumference at the top exactly corresponding to the crown and narrowing towards the bottom. For the rope and wooden clog likewise remove sufficient earth to let them both be lightly buried. That done, place the foot-gin deep enough to be just even with the surface of the soil, (28) and round the circle of the crown the cord-noose. The cord itself and wooden clog must now be lowered into their respective places. Which done, place on the crown some rods of spindle-tree, (29) but not so as to stick out beyond the outer rim; and above these again light leaves, such as the season may provide. After this put a final coating of earth upon the leaves; in the first place the surface soil from the holes just dug, and atop of that some unbroken solid earth from a distance, so that the lie of the trap may be as much as possible unnoticed by the deer. Any earth left over should be carried to a distance from the gin. The mere smell of the newly-turned-up soil will suffice to make the animal suspicious; (30) and smell it readily she will.

(27) Or, "remove a mass of soil to the depth of five palms so as to form a circular hole corresponding in size with the rim above- named."

(28) Or, "like a door over the cavity, somewhat below the surface, flatwise"; i.e. "in a horizontal position."

(29) So literally, but really Carthamus creticus, a thistle-like plant used for making spindles (Sprengel ap. L. & S.), the Euonymous europaeus being our spindle-tree. Aristot. "H. A." ix. 40, 49; Theocr. iv. 52.

(30) Lit. "if she once sniffs the new-turned soil the deer grows shy, and that she will quickly do." See Plat. "Laws," 933 A; "Phaedr." 242 C; "Mem." II. i. 4.

The hunter should take his hounds and inspect the traps upon the mountains, early in the morning if possible, though he should do so also during the day at other times. Those set on cultivated land must always be inspected early, before the sun is up in fact, (31) and for this reason: on the hills, so desert is the region, (32) the creatures may be caught not only at night but at any time of day; while, on the cultivated lands, owing to their chronic apprehension of mankind in daytime, night is the only time. (33)

(31) "Before the sun is up."

(32) Or, "thanks to the lonesomeness of the region."

(33) "It is night or never, owing to the dread of man which haunts the creature's mind during daytime."

As soon as the huntsman finds a gin uprooted he will let slip his hounds and with cheery encouragement (34) follow along the wake of the wooden clog, with a keen eye to the direction of its march. That for the most part will be plain enough, since stones will be displaced, and the furrow which the clog makes as it trails along will be conspicuous on tilled ground; or if the deer should strike across rough ground, the rocks will show pieces of bark torn from the clog, and the chase will consequently be all the easier. (35)

(34) See vi. 20; "with view-halloo."

(35) Or, "along that track will not be difficult."

Should the deer have been caught by one of its fore-feet it will soon be taken, because in the act of running it will beat and batter its own face and body; if by the hind-leg, the clog comes trailing along and must needs impede the action of every limb. Sometimes, too, as it is whirled along it will come in contact with the forked branches of some tree, and then unless the animal can snap the rope in twain, she is fairly caught; there ends the chase. But even so, if caught in this way or overdone with fatigue, it were well not to come too close the quarry, should it chance to be a stag, or he will lunge out with his antlers and his feet; better therefore let fly your javelins from a distance.

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