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Remarkably large alligator killed: a much more remarkahle fact stated; the remains being eaten raw, by the natives of the adjacent town.
*...* Though we have no reason to doubt the truth of this information, yet as it seems to us to be contrary to the general principles and practices of the Hindoos, we should be glad of any additional testimony from eye witnesses, in elucidation of this peculiarity.
Extract of a letter from Ghazeepore, dated 21st April, 1811.
“Several large alligators having been observed for several days, about noon, to assemble at a particular spot near the bank of the river, two officers of his majesty's 67th regt went out with a determination to shoot one of them, which they effected with a rifle gun. The animal, however, was not immediately brought on shore. He was picked up three days afterwards. The ball had entered the head, and passed out on a line leading directly under each eye. Several other balls had struck him on the body; but were thrown off by the scales, without penetrating. Upon being measured, he was found to be 29 feet in length, and seven feet in circumference. The jaw from under each orbit of the eye, to its extremity, measured three feet, and contained 52 teeth in the upper, and 48 in the lower jaw. After separating the integuments, the knife passed through nearly eight inches of fat;upon opening the stomach, there were found several half digested human limbs; the heads of two children, and a very great number of small stones, which probably had been swallowed in order to assist digestion.
“I was not previously aware that the natives of Hindoostan who exclude almost all animals from their bill of fare, would condescend to eat the flesh of the alligator, but the fact was incontestably proved on this occasion; for on our coming away after the dissection, an immense number of people came from the city of Ghazeepore, and having cut the remains of the animal that we had left, into small morsels, the whole was almost immediately devoured by the crowd, who seemed delighted with their meal : the bones were picked and not a particle except the bones and scales were left.”
Cofienhagen and its inhabitants, described by a recent German Isriter.—A German literary journal gives extracts from a work by the late M. Calligen, councellor of state and director general of the academy of surgery established at Halle, entitled Physical ficture of Cofienhagen. This performance is written in the Danish language, and contains new and interesting information on the state of that city. The population of Copenhagen is considerably increased : in 1800 the in
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habitants were reckoned at 87,391; in 1806 they were found to be 97, 438; in 1809, they exceeded 100,000. The climate is very disagreeable, by reason of prevailing humidity, united to the ever changing temperature, and the violence of the winds. Even the Norwegians and the Swedes complain of the cold, although the thermometer gives + b. 17° of Reaumur for the medium temperature of the year. Rheumatisms and chills are the prevailing diseases. The natives of Copenhagen are, generally speaking, of middling stature, light hair and pale complexions: the women are remarkable for countenances bespeaking mildness and candour; but regular beauties are rare. Beneficence is one of the characteristic features of the inhabitants of the Danish metropolis. An acquaintance with the foreign langauges is general; French, English, German, Italian, Spanish are spoken. The want of order in the interior of family arrangements, with a luxury disproportionate to the abilities of those who display it, are two sources of vexation to individuals. The number of marriages have diminished in the same ratio as the population has increased. The author details other particulars of the manner of living in Coenhagen, among which the imitation of natural objects by painting, in splendid dinners, is distinguished. A table well loaded, and even sumptuously, is in high repute. The consumption of tea, sugar, and coffee, is very great : that of the last mentioned article amounts to 1,500,000 lb. annually. The populace not having good wines, nor even good beer, console themselves with an habitual use of brandy ; which this author deems, and justly, a national misfortune. The administration of the public hospitals with that of mendicity in general, may serve for models in their kind. The latter, however, is barely adequate to the assistance demanded by the indigent, the number of which is lamentably increased since the bombardment. In the twenty-five years from 1750 to 1775 the number of deaths constantly exceeded that of births: but since the improvements adopted in bringing up children, the establishments of beneficence, and medical police, improvements which may be dated in 1776 and 1777, the births have often been found to exceed the deaths in an extraordinary proportion for so great a city. Suicides are very frequent; almost as frequent as in London; for according to a very moderate calculation one resident in every thousand ends his days by his own hands. In addition to that misery which inevitably attends on luxury and debauchery; superstition, unhappy love, and the reading of novels, are the ordinary causes of the disposition to this crime.
Eagle killed ; attacks Man.—Paris, Jan. 18. A few days ago was killed at Moyeuvre, in the department of the Moselle, an Eagle of extraordinary size. The manner in which this bird came by his death, has something worthy to figure in a collection of imaginary tales; but, the fact is attested by witnesses worthy of credit. M. G. was out shooting at crows. He took aim at one, and fired at him. At the instant when he stooped to pick up his game, the eagle darted on the sportsman, and seized him by the body. Astonished at such an attack, he is ad hardly power to struggle with his enemy, and hardly voice enough - - - - - - - * to call out for assistance. However, his situation was discovered ; several persons ran to his aid; and the eagle was killed. out, I will procure a person who shall personate you, and go to bed in your stead.”—After some further explanation, which convinced the gentleman that Mons. De Sartine's intelligence was accurate in every particular, he refused to be personated, and formed an immediate resolution literally to follow the directions he had received :-He accordingly went to bed at his usual hour, which was eleven o'clock. At half past twelve (the time mentioned by Mons. De Sartine) the door of the bed-chamber burst open, and three men entered with a dark lantern, daggers, and pistols.-The gentleman, who, of course, was awake, perceived one of them to be his own servant.—They rifled his portmanteau undisturbed, and settled the plan of putting him to death.-The gentleman, hearing all this, and not knowing by what means he was to be rescued, it may naturally be supposed was under great perturbation of mind during such an awful interval of suspense, when, at the moment the villains were preparing to commit the horrid deed, four police officers, acting under M. ń. Sartine’s orders, who were concealed under the bed, and in the closet, rushed out and seized the offenders with the property in their possession, and in the act of preparing to commit the murder. The consequence was, that the perpetration of the atrocious deed was prevented, and sufficient evidence obtained to convict the offenders.-Mons. De Sartine's intelligence enabled him to prevent this horrid offence of robbery and murder,-which, but for the accuracy of the system, would probably have been carried into execution.
Hearing restored to a flatient deaf and dumb.-Paris. M. Itard, physician to the Institution of the Deaf and Dumb, has performed an operation on a youth named Dietz, aged 15 years, who was deprived of the enjoyment of hearing and of speech. The mode was by perforation of the ears. The first part of the operation was performed on the 2d of last July; the first injections were made four days afterwards; they began to pass by the mouth on the 12th. Young Dietz, who before had been insensible to the report of a cannon, gave towards the end of the month signs of emotion, arising from vertigo, and dulness in his head. A few days afterwards he was capable of hearing speech. At this acquisition he could not restrain his joy; his eyes brightened, and he seemed to have obtained a knew source of delight. Several words were pronounced as lessons to him ; these he repeated with tolerable facility. It was necessary to habituate him gradually to his new powers, lest too strong and too numerous sensations should have done as much harm as mild and gentle impressions might do good. This fact was demonstrated, when a musical instrument was first played before him: he was observed to tremble, to turn pale, and was ready to faint, in a moment; but quickly he experienced all the transports arising from a pleasure the intensity of which caused his cheeks to glow, his eyes to sparkle, his pulse to rise, his respiration to quicken ; and, in short, which produced upon him a species of intoxication and delirium.
.American Merchant Wessels.—Smyrna, Aug. 17. Two American :merchant vessels lately arrived here. As the United States have no treaty with the Porte, those ships hoisted the English flag, in order to obtain admission into the port. But, on the representation of the English factors, who were displeased to see foreigners make use of their national flag in order to deprive them of a part of their commerce, which is not too flourishing, the English Consul forbad them from using the British colours, and informed the custom-house that those vessels were not of his nation. This information accordingly subjected the Americans to the usual Turkish demands: 8 or 9 per cent, as custom-house duties were immediately laid on their cargoes, instead of 3 which are paid by the English. They then threatened to return without breaking bulk: at length they were allowed to land on paying 4 per cent. But scarcely had they emptied their hold, when the officers seized six barrels of indigo, which the owners will find some difficulty in getting restored, or payment of any kind made in return.
Defiravity.—A peasant, of the name of J. Angley, was lately convicted at Mentz, along with a woman with whom he cohabited, of having murdered ten persons during eighteen months. It appeared, by the evidence, that the criminal was a wood-cutter, and resided six miles from the city; being idle, and desirous of subsisting without labour, he determined to rob all single travellers who passed through a neighbouring wood; for this purpose he used to conceal himself in a
high tree, and take deliberate aim at his victim: if he fell, he descended to finish his work, and after plundering, buried the body; if, on the contrary, he missed his aim, or the person, though wounded, atten.pted to escape, he gave the signal to a dog which he had trained, and which effectually prevented that design. The number of persons who had suddenly disappeared while passing through the wood, gave rise to suspicions, and led to the apprehension of Angley and the woman, both of whom, struck with remorse, made a full confession of their guilt. Angley and the woman were executed, and the dog was shot by order of the magistrates.
Anecdote of the French Police.—A merchant of high respectability in Bordeaux, had occasion to visit the metropolis upon commercial business, carrying with him bills and money to a very large amount. On his arrival at the gates of Paris, a genteel looking man opened the door of his carriage, and addressed him to this effect:—“Sir, I have been waiting upon you for some time. according to my notes you were to arrive at this hour; and your person, your carriage, and your portmanteau, exactly answering the description I hold in my hand, you will permit me to have the honour of conducting you to Monsieur De Sartine.” The gentleman, astonished and alarmed at this interruption, and still more so at hearing the name of the Lieutenant of Police mentioned, demanded to know what Monsieur De Sartine wanted with him ; adding at the same time, that he never had committed any offence against the laws, and that he could have no right to interrupt or detain him. The messenger declared himself perfectly ignorant of the cause of the detention; stating at the same time, that when he had conducted him to Monsieur De Sartine, he should have executed his orders, which were merely ministerial. . After some further explanations, the gentleman permitted the officer to conduct him to the hotel of the Lieutenant of Police. Monsieur De Sartine received him with great politeness; and after requesting him to be seated, to his great astonishment he described his portmanteau, and toid him the exact sum in bills and specie which he had brought with him to Paris, and where he was to lodge, his usual time of going to bed, and a number of other circumstances, which the gentleman had conceived could only be known to himself—Monsieur De Sartine having thus excited attention, put this extraordinary question to him.—“Sir, are you a man of courage 2"—The gentleman still more astonished at the singularity of such an interrogatory, demanded the reason why he put such a strange question, adding at the same time that no man ever doubted his courage.—Mons. De Sartine replied,—“Sir, you are to be robbed and murdered this night!—If you are a man of courage you must go to your hotel, and retire to rest at the usual hour: but be careful that you do not fall asleep; neither will it be proper for you to look under your bed or into any of the closets which are in your bed-chamber (which he so accurately described);–you must place your portmanteau in its usual situation, near your bed, and discover no suspicion ;-leave what remains to me. If, however, you do not feel your courage sufficient to bear you
Gray Fear—The quadrupeds of America are in general smaller than those of the old Continent, but the gray bear recently found in the remote parts of North America, near the head of the Missouri, forms a striking exception to the general observation. The gray bear, which also is known to be very numerous in the Andes of South America, is supposed to be a distinct species. It is asserted that the gray bear has been seen at the head of the Missouri, of the enormous weight of two thousand pounds (two hundred and fifty stone), butcher's weight ! This animal is more dangerous to man than any other on the surface of the globe. When impelled by hunger, it attacks every creature within its reach. The scent of the gray bear is as fine as that of a hound, and the animal on which he fixes his pursuit has no chance of escape, unless possessing extraordinary powers of flight, as the motion of his pursuer is so swift. From some animals, a tree becomes a secure refuge, but the gray bear climbs, not only with facility, but with great nimbleness, takes the water like a duck, and swims with great velocity.
Inoculating Sheef.-A Russian counsellor has found out a method of inoculating sheep. He dissolves the virus, or matter, in water, and steeps it in a piece of thread, which is afterwards drawn through the extremity of the ear, where it is left hanging like an ear-ring. At the end of a few days the inoculated sheep has the same symptoms as a child that has been vaccinated. September is the most favourable time for this operation.