« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »
MAPS AND CHARTS.
I. ENGLAND AND WALES
WHAT DARWIN SAW
ONCE crossed the River Santa Lucia near its mouth,
and was surprised to observe how easily our horses, although not used to swim, passed over a width of at least six hundred yards. On mentioning this at Montevideo, I was told that a vessel containing some mountebanks and their horses being wrecked in the Plata, one horse swam seven miles to the shore. In the course of the day I was amused by the skill with which a Gaucho forced a restive horse to swim a river. He stripped off all his clothes, and, jumping on its back, rode into the water till it was out of its depth; then, slipping off over the crupper, he caught hold of the tail, and as often as the horse turned round the man frightened it back by splashing water in its face. As soon as the horse touched the bottom on the other side, the man pulled himself on, and was firmly seated, bridle in hand, before the horse gained the bank. A naked man on a naked horse is a fine spectacle; I had no idea how well the two animals suited each other. The tail of a horse is a very useful ap