Guns and Rifles. 243
is towards his head. The butt lies in a shallow bucket, secured by two straps fixed to the front of the saddle ; another strap, leading from the pommel, and passing over the right thigh of the rider, is hitched round the barrel of the gun, and has to be unbuckled and cast off when the gun is taken out.
All ways of carrying the gun with its muzzle downwards; are very objectionable; since the jolting tends to dislodge the charge; if it be considerably dislodged, the gun will probably burst, on being fired. Also, a very little shaking, when the muzzle is downwards, will shake the powder out of the nipple, and, therefore, a gun, so carried, will constantly miss fire.
At Night, to dispose of Guns.-A gun is a very awkward thing to dispose of at night. It has occurred more than once that a native servant has crept up, drawn away the gun of his sleeping master, and shot him dead. The following appears to me an excellent plan : -" When getting sleepy, you return your rifle between your legs, roll over, and go to sleep. Some people may think this is a queer place for a rifle ; but, on the contrary, it is the position of all others where utility and comfort are most combined. The butt rests on the arm, and serves as a pillow for the head; the muzzle points between the knees, and the arms encircle the lock and breech, so that you have a smooth pillow, and are always prepared to start