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Washington, United States
loves: you win if you guessed "pets" and "museums". Also books, art history, travel, British punk, Korean kimchi, bindis, martinis, and other things TBD. I will always make it very clear if a post is sponsored in any way. Drop me a line at thepetmuseum AT gmail.com !

Monday, August 11, 2014

noah webster on the dog

Of the nature of the Dog. The Dog is carnivorous, but easily tamed, and rendered subservient to the purposes of man. Indeed there are no wild dogs, except such as have proceeded from the domestic dogs which have been neglected, and suffered to escape into the wilderness. The dog has great vivacity, force and swiftness; he is faithful to a proverb; affectionate and submissive. He watches the eye of his master, waiting his orders, and a glance is sufficient to put him in motion. He is a stranger to revenge; forgetful of injuries, but grateful for favors. He licks the hand that has chastised him, and disarms resentment by submissiveness. More docile than other animals, he learns to hunt, to watch his owner's house or his flock, and will hazard his life to defend his master's person and property.

 - from Noah Webster, History of animals: designed for the instruction and amusement of persons of both sexes (New Haven: Howe & Deforest, 1812), p. 55.

BONUS! Noah Webster on the Skunk:
. . . The Skunk is an American animal, somewhat resembling a polecat, but smalIer, and of a distinct species. He is of the size of the domestic cat, of a dirty white color, interspersed with black spots. He lives in the woods and hedges, or burrows under barns; subsisting on small animals or eggs. The flesh is good, and when the animal is undisturbed, he. is not offensive; but if provoked he emits from two small bags, a fluid substance, volatile, penetrating and fetid, beyond any other substance in nature. It diffuses itself through the air to the distance of half a mile. If cast upon a garment, it resists all the art of man, and all the effects of soap. Happily this animal is not very frequent, nor troublesome.  (pp. 66-7)

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