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Cattle.   57

and it is almost beyond the power of a man on foot to tend them in a wild country : he can neither overtake them easily, nor, when overtaken, catch them. The female is, in most breeds, much the more docile. They suffer from African distemper, but in a less degree than horses. The following descriptions of mule caravans arc exceedingly graphic and instructive:--" The madrina (or godmother) is a most important personage. She is an old steady mare, with a little bell round her neck, and wheresoever she goes the mules, like good children, follow her. If several large troops are turned into one field to graze in the morning, the muleteer has only to lead the madrinas a little apart and tinkle their bells, and, although there may be 200 or 300 mules together, each immediately knows its own bell, and separates itself from the rest. The affection of these animals for their madrina saves infinite trouble. It is nearly impossible to lose an old mule: for, if detained several hours by force, she will, by the power of smell, like a dog, track out her companions, or rather the madrina ; for, according to the muleteer, she is the chief object of affection. The feeling, however, is not of an individual nature ; for I believe I am right in saying that any animal with a bell will serve as a madrina." (Charles Darwin.)

" After travelling about 14 miles, we were joined by three miners; and our mules, taking a sudden liking for their horses, jogged on at a more brisk rate. The instincts of the mulish heart form an interesting study to the traveller in the mountains. I would (were the comparison not too ungallant) liken it to a woman's ; for it is quite as uncertain in its sympathies, bestowing its affections when least expected, and, when bestowed, quite as constant, so long as the object s not taken away. Sometimes a horse, sometimes an ass, captivates the fancy of a whole drove of mules, but often an animal nowise akin. Lieutenant Beale told me that his whole train of mules once galloped off suddenly, on the plains of the Cimarone, and ran half a mile, when they halted in apparent satisfaction. The cause of their freak was found to be a buffalo-calf, which had strayed from the herd. They were frisking around it in the greatest delight, rubbing their noses against it, throwing up their heels, and making themselves