In this latter point alone, so far at least as we can at present judge, does the animal from which our figure was taken offer any remarkable discrepancy from the foregoing account. He could never be prevailed on to touch flesh either raw or cooked; and bread and fruits were the substances on which he was constantly fed. In his disposition he was moderately tame, and particularly fond of play, after his own rough and ludicrous fashion.
THE ASIATIC ELEPHANT.
The Alligators constitute a natural subdivision of the genus, in which the snout is broad, blunt, and less produced than in the true Crocodiles; the fourth tooth on each side of the lower jaw enters a hole in the upper when the mouth is closed; and the toes are only half-webbed. They appear to be exclusively natives of America. The present species is distinguished by its broad and flat snout, with nearly parallel sides, united in front by a curved line; by the peculiar arrangement of its nuchal scales; and by the elevated internal margins of its orbits. Its colour is dark brown above, and somewhat lighter beneath. It is one of the most dreadful scourges of the countries which it inhabits, preying upon all kinds of animals that come within its reach, and sometimes even upon man himself. Our specimen was apparently very young, not measuring more than three feet in length; but during two years that it was kept in the Menagerie it was not observed to have at all increased in size. It was fed once a week upon raw beef.
This species appears to be peculiar to Southern Africa. In its wild state it is equally ferocious in its temper and disgusting in its habits with the common species of the North; but it has been found, as we have before mentioned, to be capable of domestication, and of rendering services to man equal to those which he derives from the dog. The pair which have just arrived in the Tower have been placed by Mr. Cops in one den with the Striped Hy?na and with the Hy?na-Dog; and this juxta-position affords an excellent opportunity for a comparison of their characters and disposition. They agree together tolerably well; but the new-comers are hardly as yet reconciled to their abode, and consequently appear shy and reserved. The Hy?na-Dog is the most lively of the group; and his playfulness appears occasionally to give no little annoyance to the Striped Hy?na, who generally returns his solicitations with a surly snarl, but does not seem disposed to resent them farther.
So much has been written by authors of every description, from the earliest ages down to the present time, upon every point connected with their history and habits, and the space which we could devote to their illustration in the present volume is so small, that we choose rather not to enter at all upon the subject than to treat of it in the very abrupt and imperfect manner to which we should necessarily be restricted. It only remains therefore to add a few observations relative to the extremely beautiful leash of hounds which are figured at the head of the present article, before passing to the consideration of the remaining species of the group which are at present contained in the Menagerie.
The striped Hy?na has for its ground colour a uniform brownish gray, which is somewhat darker above than beneath. On the sides of the body it is marked by several irregular distant transverse blackish stripes or bands, which are more distinct on the lower part. Towards the shoulders and haunches these stripes become oblique, and they are continued in regular transverse lines on the outside of the legs. The front of the neck is completely black, as are also the muzzle and the outsides of the ears; the latter being broad, moderately long, and nearly destitute of hairs, especially on the inside. The hair of the body is long, particularly on the back of the neck and on the spine, where it forms a full and thick mane, which may be said to be continued even upon the tail, the latter organ being furnished with strong tufted hairs of considerable length. The mane and the tail are both marked with blackish spots or stripes variously and irregularly placed. Much variety is indeed to be met with as well in the ground colour of the whole body as in the disposition of the markings, which are extremely different in different individuals.