Two Years in the Jungle

William T. Hornaday

Editore: Forgotten Books
Formato: PDF
Testo in en
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Dimensioni: 21,53 MB
  • EAN: 9780243803651
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Descrizione
As a matter of simple justice to myself, I must inform the reader that the journey of which this book is a record was one of action rather than observation, and opportunities for study were few and far between. Owing to the circumstances under which the trip was carried out, all my waking hours were occupied in a ceaseless warfare for specimens, and my only regret comes when I think what it might have been, for me at least, had I not been obliged to shoot, preserve, care for and pack up nearly every specimen with my own hands. From first to last I had no other assistance than such as could be rendered by ignorant and maladroit native ser vants. Even in the preparation of these pages the demon of Work has still pursued me, and the task has been accomplished only by the aid of midnight oil, when wearied by the labors of the day. What follows is offered merely as a faithful pen-picture of what may be seen and done by almost any healthy young man in two years of ups and downs in the East Indies. He, at least, who loves the green woods and rippling waters, and has felt the mystic spell of life in a vast wilderness, will appre ciate the record of my experiences. I love nature and all her works, but one day in an East Indian jungle, among strange men and beasts, is worth more to me than a year among dry and musty study specimens. The green forest, the airy mountain, the plain, the river, and the sea-shore are to me a perpetual delight, and the pursuit, for a good purpose, of the living creatures that inhabit them adds an element of buoyant excitement to the enjoyment of natural scenery, which at best can be but feebly portrayed in words. In the belief that the average reader is more interested in facts of a general nature than in minutiae, I have avoided going into nat ural history details, but have endeavored instead to indicate the most striking features of the countries visited, and the more note worthy animals and men encountered in their homes. As the pages which follow will presently reveal, this is in every sense a personal — I might even say a first-personal — narrative, in which the reader is taken as a friend into the author's confidence while they make the trip together. The writer addresses, not the public, in general, but The Reader, individually. To him I would say, confidentially of course, that as a duty to him, in the prepara tion of these pages I have labored earnestly to avoid all forms of exaggeration, and to represent everything with photographic accu racy as to facts and figures. It is easy to overestimate and color too highly, and I have fought hard to keep out of my story every elephant and monkey who had no right to a place in it.