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entrap their enemies. Being lightly covered with sand, they are dangerous snares to the unwary traveler; and Lariboo fell into one of them. The panther, seeing she could not extricate herself, seized hold of her braided girdle, as a cat does with her kitten, and at one bound placed her in safety. She was a little bruised by the rough strength of her deliverer, but not otherwise injured.
The woman fared better than the faithful brute. She could live on very little food, and she carried her mantle full of dates and berries. But both the travelers suffered much from hunger during their long journey. The panther was once so raving that she seized her companion violently by the leg; but her teeth did not enter the flesh, and a few caresses made her relent. Lariboo felt then that death was not far off, and at times she felt very willing to die. She was famishing herself, and it was plain that the panther could not much longer endure the pangs of hunger.
But a different ending of her troubles awaited her. They were close to the confines of a country, which here and there presented a solitary hut. A large antelope, chased and caught by the panther, satisfied her hunger, and she was again affectionate. Lariboo likewise found a few berries to keep life in her almost exhausted frame.
She was afraid to enter any of the huts, lest she should encounter enemies of her tribe, and be carried to the seacoast to be sold into slavery in foreign lands. But, about three hours after the death of the antelope, she espied a hunter, with bow and arrow. The panther saw the same sight, and darted forward to seize him. But the hunter was very expert; and as the terrible animal raised herself to spring upon him, he shot her directly in the throat with a poisoned arrow, and then laid himself flat upon the ground.
The panther cleared his prostrate body at one leap; there were a few convulsive bounds and then she rolled powerless on the ground.
When Lariboo came up, the beautiful but terrible creature fixed a mournful, loving look upon her, and tried to lick her hand. Lariboo would have given anything to have saved the animal's life, and when the panther was dead, she sobbed like a child who had lost a favorite dove.
"My guardian of the desert," she exclaimed, “you saved my life; you protected me from the fury of your own species; but I could not save you from mine." She smoothed the rich, glossy hairs of her dead favorite, and watered them plentifully with her tears.
The hunter thought her conduct very strange; but when she told how the panther had loved her, and watched over her, and refrained from harming her, even when very hungry, he no longer wondered at her grief. But he convinced her that the fierce animal could not possibly have gone far with her into an inhabited country; because if she were hungry she would attack any human being she happened to meet.
"It was lucky for you," said he, "that you happened to gain her affection while her stomach was full. If she had been fasting when you took possession of her cave, it would have done but little good to caress her."
Lariboo knew very well that the panther would not have been a safe traveling companion in any inhabited country; but she could not help weeping whenever she thought of the remarkable friendship they had formed for each other. She remained several days at the hunter's cabin, to rest and recruit herself, and then departed on the route which he told her would lead to Bilma, in the Tibbu country.
It is a mean little town, with mud walls, and derives its
importance solely from the numerous salt lakes around it, salt being one of the most valuable articles of commerce in Africa. At Bilma, Lariboo found a caravan of Tibbu traders and under their protection she reached her home in safety, and found her husband alive and well. Her wonderful adventures served for many an hour of gossip; and some of the Tibbu poets made songs about the panther, and sang them, with the banjo for an accompaniment.
She gave such a fascinating account of the oasis where she first met her superb four-footed friend that her husband persuaded twenty or thirty of his neighbors to go there with him to live. "Lariboo says we shall find plenty to live upon," said he; "and as it lies far from the route between Murzuk and Bornu we shall be safely out of the way of the tyrannical Tuareks.”
They accordingly removed thither with twenty camels and a flock of gazelles. Lariboo was happy in her new home, but she never forgot her traveling companion of the desert, and the skin of the panther hung in her hut to the day of her death.
THE DISCOVERY OF AMERICA
It was on Friday morning, the 12th of October, 1492, that Columbus first beheld the New World.
On landing, he threw himself on his knees, kissed the earth, and returned thanks to God with tears of joy. His example was followed by the sailors, whose hearts indeed overflowed with the same feelings of gratitude.
Columbus then, rising, drew his sword, displayed the royal standard, and took solemn possession in the name of the Castilian sovereigns, giving the island the name of San Salvador. Having complied with the requisite forms and ceremonies, he called upon all present to take the oath of obedience to him, as admiral and viceroy representing the persons of the sovereigns.
The feelings of the crew now burst forth in the most extravagant transports. They thronged about the Admiral with overflowing zeal, some embracing him, others kissing his hands. Those who had been most mutinous and turbulent during the voyage, were now most devoted and enthusiastic. Some begged favors of him, as if he had already wealth and honors in his gift. Many abject spirits, who had outraged him by their insolence, now crouched at his feet begging pardon for all the trouble they had caused him, and promising the blindest obedience for the future.
A LETTER FROM COLUMBUS
[The following letter was written aboard ship by Columbus, March 14, 1493. It was written in Spanish, and addressed "to the noble Lord Raphael Sanchez, Treasurer to their most invincible Majesties, Ferdinand and Isabella, King and Queen of Spain."]
To Lord Raphael Sanchez:
Knowing that it will afford you pleasure to learn that I have brought my undertaking to a successful termination, I have decided upon writing you this letter to acquaint you with all the events which have resulted from it.
Thirty-three days after my departure from Cadiz I reached the Indian Sea, where I discovered many islands, thickly peopled, of which I took possession in the name of our most illustrious monarchs, by public proclamation and with unfurled banners. To the first of these islands I gave the name of the blessed Saviour, relying upon whose protection I had reached this as well as the other islands.
I proceeded along its coast a short distance westward, and found it to be so large and apparently without termination, that I could not suppose it to be an island, but the continental province of Cathay.
In the meantime I had learned from some Indians whom I had seized, that the country was certainly an island; and therefore I sailed toward the east, coasting to the distance of three hundred and twenty-two miles, which brought us to the extremity of it; from this point I saw lying eastwards another island, fifty-four miles distant, to which I gave the name Española.
All these islands are very beautiful, and distinguished by a diversity of scenery; they are filled with a great variety of