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not fine. Many of them aré en- the mountains before the comtirely black, and a great proportion mencement of winter, is a very are black and white. The wool is important part of the business of never shorn, but pulled off. Much an Iceland farmer. As soon as the of it is lost before it is taken off; hay harvest is over, and when and what remains, after hanging the Hreppstiorè, or parish officer, for a time on the animal's back, thinks that the farmers are ready, becomes spoiled and felted by the he informs the Sysselman of the rain. The sheep are very much district, who causes a notice to be infested byvermin, known in Eng- given in the churches, that on a land by the name of ticks and keds. certain day the gathering of the The lambs are early restrained sheep shall commence, and, at from sucking; and the ewes are the same time, appoints a place of milked, and butter is made from rendezvous. Every farmer who the produce.
has a considerable part of his stock It is part of the employment of feeding on the mountains, must the women, during winter, to pick send one man; or, if the number and clean the wool, and to spin it. of his sheep be very small, le A considerable quantity is export- may join with another whose case ed; and it is so valuable an article is similar, and together they send in Denmark, that it sells in Ice- When the men destined for land for as much as coarse wool this service assemble, they choose in the north of Scotland.
one who has had much experience, About the year 1756, an attempt whom they agree to obey, and was made to improve the wool in they give him the title of king, Iceland, by the introduction of and the power of selecting two asSpanish rams; but, owing to neg- sociates as counsellors. On the apligence, it was unsuccessful. With pointed day they meet at the place that zeal for bettering the condi- fixed upon, perhaps to the numtion of his country which distin- ber of 200, on horseback. Havguishes him, Mr. Stephenson of ing pitched their tents, and comIndreholm brought a few Merino'mitted their horses to the care of rams and ewes from Norway in children who have accompanied the year 1808. Their wool is them, the king, on horseback, tolerably fine, but by no means gives his orders, and sends the so good as that of the Merinos in men off two and two, strictly enEngland. I saw the lambs of the joining them not to lose sight of first cross between them and the their comrades. Having collected Iceland ewes, and they promised as many sheep as they can find; very well
. If Mr. Stephenson pere they drive them towards the tents, severes in his laudable exertions, and then shift their quarters. Thus and if the people can be made sen- they go on during a week, when sible of the advantages to be de- they take all the sheep to one of rived from improving the wool, he the large pens constructed for the will have the satisfaction of having purpose, which consist of one large begun a most beneficial improve enclosure, surrounded by a numment. :
ber of smaller ones, for the
purThe gathering of the sheep from pose of separating the sheep belonging to different persons. This are highly ornamented with brass, business is quite a rural festival; cut into various figures. The but the merriment is often mingled common people all ride in the with the lamentations of those who same way, with the legs astride, have lost some of their sheep, or the women having their feet the quarrels of others who have raised so high, that their knees accidentally fixed upon the same are considerably above the back mark for their property.
The of the horse. search for sheep is repeated about Forgrinding corn, the Icelanders the middle, and again about the use small handmills, the same end, of October. At this last with those known in Scotland by time, those only who have failed the name of quern. in recovering their sheep on the Though here is little encouformer occasions, are engaged. ragement from the climate, yet Every animal that is unproductive, there are some parts of Iceland or which cannot be used, must, where experiments might be made by a law which is strictly enforced, in cultivating barley, potatoes, and be sent to the mountains about the turnips. Along the shores, where end of May, in order that as much the soil is sandy, and where seafine grass as possible may be saved weeds can be procured in abunfor the milch cows and ewes, and dance, something in this way for making hay.
might be done.
But nothing Mention has been made in the can be effected without the suJournal, of the excellence of the perintendence of some active and riding horses of this country. intelligent person, able to comWhen a young horse is thought to bat the prejudices, and to enpromise well, his nostrils are slit courage the exertions of the up, the Icelanders believing, that natives. when exercised, or ridden hard, this operation will allow him to breathe more freely.
I do not
ON THE Osage INDIANS. From suppose that the horses of Iceland
Major Pike's Exploratory Tracould run on our roads at the great
vels in North America. rate at which I have seen them The Osage Indians appear to go, for any length of time. They have emigrated from the north and are accustomed to scramble slowly west, and from their speaking the through the bogs and over rocks, same language with the Kanses, and to dart rapidly forward when- Ottoes, Missouries, and Mashaws, ever they come to dry and smooth together with one great similarity ground. In travelling, a man has of manners, morals, and customs, generally two or three horses there is left no room to doubt, with him, and he changes from that they were originally the same one to another as they become nation ; but separated by those tired,
great laws of nature, self-preserThe saddle for the use of vation, the love of freedom, and women resembles an elbow-chair, the ambition of various characin which they sit with their feet ters, so inherent in the breast of resting on a board. Some of them man.
The governinent of the Osages influence on the councils of the is oligarchical, but still partakes of nation, by their pretended divi. the nature of a republic; for al- nations, interpretation of dreams, though the power is nominally and magical performances, an vested in a small number of chiefs, illustration of which will be better yet they never undertake any given by the following incident, matter of importance without first which took place during my stay. assembling the warriors, and pro. Having had all the doctors, or posing the subject in council, magicians, assembled in the lodge there to be discussed and decided of Ca-ha-ga-tonga, (or Cheveu on by a majority. Their chiefs Blanc) and about five hundred are hereditary in most instances, spectators, they had two rows of but there are many men who have fires prepared, around the spot risen to more influence than those where the sacred band was staof illustrious ancestry, by their tioned. They commenced the activity and boldness in war. Al- tragic comedy, by putting a large though there is no code of laws, butcher's knife down their throats, yet there is a tacit acknowledg- the blood appearing to run during ment of the right which some the operation very naturally. The have to command on certain occa- scene was continued by putting sions ; whilst others are bound to sticks through their nose, swallowobey, and even to submit to cor- ing bones, and taking them out poral punishment, as was in- of the nostrils, &c.; at length one stanced in the affair related in my fellow demanded of me what I diary of the 29th of July, when would give if he would run a Has-ha-ke-da-tungar (or the stick through his tongue, and let Big Soldier) whom I had made a another person cut off the piece ? partizan to regulate the move- I replied, a shirt: he then apments of the Indians, flogged a parently performed his promise young Indian with arms in his seemingly with great pain, forcing hands. On the whole, the go- a stick through his tongue, and vernment may be termed an oli- then giving a knife to a bye. garchical republic, where the chiefs stander, who appeared to cut off propose, and the people decide on the piece which he held to the all public acts.
light for the satisfaction of the The manners of the Osage are audience, then joined it to his different from those of any nation tongue, and by a magical charm, I ever saw (except those before healed the wound immediately. mentioned of the same origin), On demanding of me what I having their people divided into thought of the performance? I classes, all the bulk of the nation replied, I would give him twenty being warriors and hunters, the shirts, if he would let me cut off terms being almost synonymous the piece from his tongue. This with them; the rest are divided disconcerted him a great deal, and into two classes, cooks and doc- I was sorry I made the observators, the latter of whom likewise tion. exercise the functions of priests The cooks are either for the or magicians, and have great general use, or attached particu
larly to the family of some great being posted with scarcely any man; and what is the more singu- regularity, each individual buildlar is, that frequently persons who ing in the manner, direction and have been great warriors, and dimensions that suit him best ; by brave men, having lost all their which means they frequently leave families by disease or in war, and only room for a single man to themselves becoming old and in- squeeze between them. Added to firm, frequently take up the pro- this, they have pens for their fession of a cook, in which they horses, all within the village, into do not carry arms, and are sup- which they always drive them at ported by the public, or by their night, in case they think there is particular patron. They likewise any reason to believe an enemy to exercise the functions of town be lurking in the vicinity. The criers, calling the chiefs to coun- Osage lodges are generally concil, or to feasts; and if any par- structed with upright posts, put ticular person is wanted, you em- firmly in the ground, about twenty ploy a crier, who goes through feet in height, with a crotch at the village calling his name, and the top. They are generally about iuforming him, he is wanted at twelve feet distant from each such a lodge.
other. In the crotch of these When received into the Osage posts are put the ridge poles, over village, you immediately present which are bent small poles, the yourself at the lodge of the chief, ends of which are brought down who receives you as his guest, and fastened to a row of stakes, of where you generally eat first, after about five feet in height; these the old patriarchal style; you are are fastened together with three then invited to a feast by all the horizontal bars, and form the great men of the village, and it flank walls of the lodge. The would be a great insult not to gable ends are generally broad comply, at least so far as to taste slabs, and rounded off to the ridge of their victuals. In one instance pole. The whole of the building I was obliged to taste of fifteen and sides is covered with matting different entertainments in the made of rushes of two or three same afternoon. You will hear feet in length, and four feet in the cooks crying, Come and eat, width, which are joined together, such a one gives a feast, come and and entirely exclude the rain. The eat of his bounty. Their dishes doors are in the side of the buildwere generally boiled, sweet corning, and there is generally one on in buffalo grease, or boiled meat
each side : the fires are made in and pumpkins; but Sans Oreille holes
holes in the centre of the lodge, (or Tetohan) treated me with the smoke ascending through apsome tea in a wooden dish, new pertures left in the roof for the horn spoons, boiled meat and purpose. At one end of the dwellcrullers; he had been in the ing isa raised platform, about three United States.
feet from the ground, which is Their towns hold more people covered with bear skins, and gein the same space of ground than nerally holds all the little choice any place I ever saw; their lodges furniture of the master, and on this repose his honourable guests. becoming more powerful, than the In fact, with neatness and a pleas- latter return to its ancient resiing companion, they compose a dence; for the Grand and Little very comfortable and pleasant Osage are both obliged to proceed summer habitation; but they are to the Arkansaw every winter to left in the winter for the woods: kill the summer provision : all the they vary in length from thirty- nations with whom they are now six to one hundred feet.
at war are besides situated to the The Osagenation is divided into westward of that river, from three villages, and in a few years whence they get all their horses. you may say nations, viz. the These inducements are such, that Grand Osage, the Little Osage, the young, the bold, and the enand those of the Arkansaw. The terprising are daily emigrating Little separated from the Grand from the Osage village to the Osage about two years since; and Arkansaw village. In fact, it their chiefs, on obtaining permis- would become the interest of our sion to lead forth a colony from government to encourage that the grand council of the nation, emigration, if they intended to moved on to the Missouri ; but promote the extension of the setafter some years, finding them- tlement of Upper Louisiana ; but selves too hard pressed by their their true policy is to use every enemies, they again obtained method to prevent their elongation leave to return and put themselves from the Missouri. under the protection of the Grand They are considered by the Village, and
settled down about nations to the south and west of six miles off. The Arkansaw them, as a brave and warlike
peoschism was effected by Mr. Pierre ple, but are by no means a match Chouteau, ten or twelve years for the northern nations, who ago, in revenge of M. Manuel de make use of the rifle, and can Liza, who had obtained from the combat them two for one, whilst Spanish government the exclusive they again may fight those armed trade of the Osage nation by the with bows, arrows, and lances, at way of the Osage river, after it the same disproportion. The huhad been in the hands of M. Chou. mane policy which the United teau for nearly twenty years; the States have held forth to the latter leaving the trade of the Ar- Indians of accommodating their kansaw, thereby nearly rendered differences, and acting as meabortive, the exclusive privilege diators between them, has sucof his rival. He has been vainly ceeded to a miracle with the promising to the government, that Osage of the Grand Village and the he would bring them back to join Little Osage. They have by this the Grand Village, but his recep- means become a nation of quakers, tion at the Arkansaw village must as it respects the nations to the have nearly cured him of that north and east of them, the idea. And in fact every reason same time that they continue to induces a belief, that the other make war on the naked and devillages are much more likely to fenceless savages of the west. An join the Arkansaw, which is daily instance of their forbearance was