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Fire.   185

use a prepared charcoal in the East, which is made in the form of very large buttons, that are carried strung together on a string. An Indian correspondent informs me that they are made by mixing powdered charcoal with molasses, in the proportion of ten to one, or thereabouts, rolling the mass into balls, and drying them in the sun. A single ball is called a "gul." They are used for igniting hookhas : they are also burnt inside the smoothing-iron used by washermen in order to heat it. The juice or sap of many plants would probably answer the purpose of molasses in their preparation.

Small Fuel for lighting the Fire.-Shreds and Fibres.-The live spark has to be received, and partly enclosed, in a loose heap or "nest of finely-shredded fuel. The substances for making such a nest, are one or other of the following list :

Dry grass of the finest kinds; leaves; moss ; lichen, and wild cotton; stalks or bark, broken up and rubbed small between the fingers ; peat or cattle-dung pulverised; paper that has been doubled up in many folds and then cut with a sharp knife into the finest possible shavings ; tow, or what is the same thing, oakum, made by unravelling rope or string; and scrapings and fine shavings from a log of wood. The shreds that are intended to touch the live spark should be reduced to the finest fibre ; the outside of the nest may be of coarser, but still of somewhat delicate material.

Cook should collect them.- It is the duty of a cook, when the time of encamping draws near, to get down from his horse, and to pick up, as he walks along, a sufficiency of dry grass, little bits of wood, and the like, to start a fire ; which he should begin to make as soon as ever the caravan stops. The fire ought to be burning, and the kettle standing by its side, by the time that the animals are caught and are ready to be off packed.

Small Sticks.-There should be abundance of small sticks, and if neither these nor any equivalent for them are to be picked up, the traveller should split up his larger firewood with his knife, in order to make them. It is a wise economy of time and patience to prepare plenty of these ; otherwise it will occasionally happen that the whole stock will be consumed and no fire made. Then the traveller must recommence