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hardly to be able to distinguish to procure food for the ravenous one fish from another : these are denizens of his pond. the men to fish in the vicinity of; One custom which they have and the mill dam and mill tail here, and I told him it would go will generally reward the angler's nigh to destroy the very breed of labour.
fish in his river, is, to have a Not so is it about the mill of grand drag of the stream in the a man who has a taste for fish month of March, called a Spring himself. I met with a strong in- Fishing, for perhaps two miles of stance of this last summer in a water. At this time of course stream that divides Suffolk from the fish have not spawned, and Essex, at a certain part of it the best reason given for fishing where a friend of mine has a mill, is that there are no weeds then hisown freehold-and a beautifuí to annoy them; but it generally place it is. When I first visited happens that this grand drag is him there a few years ago, I could made a sort of pleasure party, to sit in his back-yard, and catch which many neighbours and many more fish before breakfast friends are invited-some to beat than I could eat for my dinner; the stream with poles, some to and between breakfast and an help drag the nets, some to do early dinner have frequently one thing, and some another, but taken from eight to ten dozen of all to eat and drink; and thus roach, perch, &c. upon his own the poor fishes are taken by wholepremises.
sale, very few escaping. My Last summer I was there again friend admitted to me that when for a few days, and though I did he fished the river last spring not come in to dinner when the thousands of fish
were killed horn sounded (for so was I sum- and lost to his pike, by the caremoned) with an empty basket, lessness of his people, owing, I yet my ten dozen would be re- believe, to their attending more duced to about one dozen, or a to the ale than to the water. dozen and a half at most, and Now had the fishing spoken of those very small.
only been delayed a little Upon walking with my friend month," millions of young fry about his place on the evening of would have been left in the river, the second day, I soon found out and helped to preserve the breed. how the river had become so bare It may be fancied by some that of inhabitants. Some four years such a sweeping destruction of back he had a pond for keeping fish will be replaced by supplies pike made in his garden, fed by a from above and below the mill in pipe from the river, and in this question ; but such is not the he keeps a large number of pike fact;for in mill-streams especially, of various sizes, putting in even the fish (except eels) are bred and the smallest pickerel he may take confined principally in the space in his nets; and of the last it ap- between one mill and another; pears he has lots, from the smal- there is no opportunity, as in the lest fue and cast-net to the im- locks of navigable rivers, for their mensely-sweeping drag; and these moving up and down. Over or are used at all times and seasons under the mill wheel they cannot
go; and it is well proved in flood- Sacqui would with ease have times that scarcely a fish (except, danced on, and with a sort of as before excepted, eels) is caught lob-worm for a bait; but the only in the nets and traps always then thing he had to do with fish while set by millers. Eels have a natu- I was there was to assist me in ral disposition to ramble at such landing some of my heaviest; times, while other fish get out and he at length found so much of the strong stream, if possible, sport in that, and in seeing me and remain where they are. I hook them as I did, that he laid have sometimes known a carp or down his willow branch and a tench caught with the eels, but slack-rope to look at me, seeming scarcely ever a roach, dace, chub, to be in perfect wonderment perch, &c.
where the devil the fish came To prove this fact, and to shew from: and when he found that how ruinous to the angler's sport my line was but a single horse is a fish-loving miller, and vice hair, his astonishment, as I let versa, I may mention that one him take the liberty to hold it beday during my visit last summer tween his fingers to look at, I drove to a mill on the same seemed to know no bounds; he stream, some five or six miles looked up in my face as if he aphigher up the water, there being peared to think there was some three mills between my friend's enchantment about the matter. and the one I went to, and here I gave him a few halfpence for my sport was admirable: my his help, and when I went away basket, a large one, was crammed I have little doubt but the poor with fish in a short time, and most fellow thought he had enjoyed a of them very large; so much so, good day's sport–certes he would that when I got back a lot or two have something to talk about. were picked out as presents to
Another instance of a piscamy friend's neighbours, one of tory miller occurs on a small river whom was also a water-miler in Suffolk, though it is different pretty well proving they could from the one last spoken of, inshew nothing like them at home. asmuch as it is navigable, though
Now the miller where I went not much used, and therefore knew not one fish from another; may receive supplies of fisheither he had no pike pond; and as to a from above or below by the dounet, the only one I could hear of ble lock and single stanch gates. about his premises was a cabbage This stream has a great variety net, so that the fishes and the fair of very fine fish in it, where proangler have it all their own way. tected; but in the immediate This gentleman is even obliged by vicinity of the miller last mena handsome fry of his own fish tioned, who is an eternal fisher left by any friend who has been for his pike ponds, of which he angling there, and who has done has two, there is a plentiful scarthe trick. But even here, with city of sport. all the plentifulness of fish, it İlis pike ponds, and their apwas bait (chiefly paste) and me- purtenances, are however, except thod that filled the basket. A to an angler, well worth examincountry lad was making believe to ing. They are situated in a small angle with a line that Madame plantation just above his mill, and Vol. VII. - SECOND SERIES.No. 37.
are fed by the stream, which is rather know that I was participaconstantly running through them. ting of fish procured by legitiIn one pond he has only small mate sporting: for it is quite inpike, and in the other large ones: calculable the quantity of fish in the latter he has some fish these pike destroy-much more I weighing, I believe, upwards of apprehend than they would if twenty pounds; the biggest of they had to seek their own food which he talks of keeping till in the river: in their confinement his eldest son, now a child, comes they get nothing but fish; in the of age. Outside of the whole open river they would get many plantation and ponds he has had other matters and things, especia wide ditch dug, also fed con- ally frogs, of which they are very stantly by the river, and grated fond. like the ponds, which answers the Now, though I know both the double purpose of a defence to millers mentioned as pike-prehis property, and also a reservoir servers exceedingly well, and am for small fish, when he catches a always made most welcome at glut, whence he can supply his their houses, I cannot help telling pike ponds. I here saw an inge. them that they have spoiled the nious contrivance of his to feed angling near their own mills, and the fish in this ditch in the sum- that I should at any time rather mer and autumn, which was done fish four or five miles away from by procuring the leg of any herse them. And I repeat, that any that had been killed in his neigh- brother of the angle, who is about bourhood, and fixing it to the to betake himself to mill-stream branch of a tree which overhung fishing, should, if possible, beforethe ditch, where the flies would hand ascertain the habits and blow it, and the gentles, when at propensities of the millers as to maturity, would drop into the fish and fishing; or sometimes, as water. At this spot a great shoal far as regards sport, he may find of fish was generally congregated he had better have remained at waiting for the fruit of their fa- home; for my millers are not the vorite magot-tree; the produce only ones fond of a pike roasted of which they seemed to enjoy with a pudding in his belly. as well as if cleansed in bran. I Hoping pardon for this long have been frequently much gossip, and wishing you, and all amused by seeing the large pike, your readers who are disciples of when hungry, fly at a fish that old Izaak Walton, a fine spring, was thrown into their pond, even summer, and autumn, and lots of if a dead one, with such vehe good fishing, I remain, yours, &c. mence as to make a plunge as
J. M. LACEY. loud as if a Newfoundland dog had jumped into the water; and when one of them had seized it, P. S. By the bye, your Correthe rest would pursue him, evi- spondent RIPARius, in his "Flydently jealous of his luck, and fishing on the Dornoch,” has desirous to get his prize from him. lugged in a whole-length por
But after all this, and even trait of a Cockney Angler, whom after partaking of the so-well- he has christened Lacy. Perhaps fed pike out of these ponds, I had this is only a nom de guerre ; at all events I beg it to be understood Fifty,” published in one of your that I do not plead guilty to the Numbers last summer, likeness in any of its points or “ Now twenty stone my weight is," particulars. In the first place, I I shall certainly be exonerated have a letter in my name more from the charge of having "scramthan he has: in the next, I have bled up a large willow as quick killed too many fine fish with a as a squirrel,” which my namesingle hair, and without running sake without an e is said to have tackle, to handle a fish as he is accomplished. Whatever I may said to have done: and lastly, have done earlier in my life, at when I quote to you a line of present I take my angling much plain fact, from “My Song at more soberly and steadily.
THE HAMBLEDON COUNTRY-IN A LETTER FROM MILES
TO HIS FRIEND ONEOFUS.
DEAR ONEOFUS, WHAT have you been doing very quick thing from Botley
all this season : are you Grange, seeing Square go as able to take the field? I hope straight as a bird from the wood and trust you are recovered, and at finding up to the gorse leading able to enjoy your favorite sport. from West End to Fair Oak, I have fancied you might perhaps over a most difficult country. He derive some
amusement from was the only man who went the hearing of your old friends; and line of the hounds, and as I rode chance having placed me in along the lane parallel with him, Hampshire part of this winter, I I looked at him in admiration as saw your old acquaintance Mr. he took fence after fence in the King, who now hunts the Ham- most gallant manner, coming bledon country, and, with Jack down at last into the lane from Square for first whip, has shewn the top of a very high bank, most splendid sport. Up to the which his horse did most cleverly. time I last heard of him, January The other whip is also a very 18th, he had had a succession of good rider, and understands his runs (killing seventeen foxes in business. sixteen days), and many of them The hounds are small, indeed most capital things. I need not so much so, that the first time I say he is a universal favorite both saw them I could hardly believe in and out of the field. His they were fox-hounds. Mr. King health is not good, and he suffers fancies a small hound better cal. at times from the effects of a culated for an inclosed and woodsevere fall last season, which pre- land country, which most part of vents his riding hard: neverthe- the Hambledon is, though I never less, he does manage, by having could understand why a larger very clever horses, and getting hound should not be as good, and off at bad places, to get to his in getting over fences he certainly hounds most surprisingly, and it has the advantage. It is only in is very seldom he is far from them. a hilly country that a small hound
However nothing can stop his should be preferred. Mr. Hodgman. I remember one day, in a son, for instance, I have heard,
always keeps his bitches and Among the former are three smallest hounds for the Wolds, gallant Captains-one, the Secreand the large hounds for the tary of the Club, stands preHolderness, or low country. Mr. eminent for his devotion to the King always had small hounds ; sport. Even yourself, dear ONEand I understand he carries his opus, are not more enthusiastic; fancy in this so far, that in the and on non-hunting days he is course of a year or two he intends generally occupied upon some buto have his pack entirely of bitches, siness connected with the coverts keeping only a few stallion or keepers, and his principal dehounds for breeding.
light (next to being alongside You know the Hambledon hounds running hard) is collectcountry, I believe. Of course to ing two or three at his table to a man accustomed to the Midland talk over the morning's sport. counties it is very bad, the lower To his good qualities as a compapart being a good deal woodland, nion, is added another advantage, where hounds are out of sight which renders his mansion most half the time, and where a know- attractive, which is, having one of ledge of the country is absolutely the best cooks in the neighbournecessary to enable you to get hood, and some of the very best along. The upper part is open, wines. He is also a very fair but not so favorable for scent: performer over a country. but on the whole I should pro- Another right hospitable and nounce Hampshire a very fair pleasant companion, also a miliprovincial country; and should tary man, is devoted to the sport. any man be obliged to take up his He is getting heavy, and a certain abode at Southampton for a win- age, but is still keen, and with ter, he may with two or three his worthy twin-brother of Clayhorses amuse himself three or four field, thinks little of twelve or days a week ; and on non-hunting fourteen miles to covert. Anodays he will have one of the plea- ther, a gallant sailor, is fond of col. santest towns in England to lecting a few fox-hunters at his lounge in, where he will meet sumptuous board; and, though some most hospitable and gene- he has given up hunting, still rous good fellows, who will afford likes to hear what is doing, and him frequent opportunities of now and then appears at the quaffing a bumper to fox-hunting covert side when the fixture is in the choicest of wines; and if near. His son-in-law is a very he be a ball-loving man, he may tolerable performer across a counwaltz and quadrille it night after try. night among
There are some very
good riders in the Hambledon Hunt. “A dazzling host of eyes
I should say the youngest Mr. Of every hue, as Love may chance to
Delme is generally the first, and His black or azure banner in their blaze, on his chesnut few can beat him. And each sweet mode of warfare, from the All the Messrs. Delme are good :
flash That lightens boldly through Coventry's indeed think they should be dark lash,
reckoned the three best. Mr. To the sly, stealing splendour, almost hid Stretton is also a very good one Like swords half-sheathed, beneath fair Giffard's }id,"
on his own nags. I was sorry to