« PreviousContinue »
because it was designed to live on small insects for its food. The tongue is the organ with which the chameleon catches these insects. It is round like a worm, very long, and can be pushed backwards and forwards from a sheath at the back of its mouth. The tip is a little wider than the rest, and is covered with a kind of glutinous fluid. When the chameleon is about to seize its prey, it turns its great eyes round upon the object of its search, and darts out its long tongue, never missing its aim, and brings it back to its mouth with the insect sticking to the tip. Chameleons were commonly said to live on air because they were seen to dart their tongue backwards and forwards in the air, while the insects which they caught were so small as not to be visible.
2. The feet. The toes on each foot are bound together in two packets or bundles, opposite each other, three in one packet and two in the other, the two bundles being covered with skin up to the very claws. This arrangement is most convenient in enabling the chameleon to lay firm hold on the branches of the trees, in which it lives.
3. The tail. This is long, and made so as to be able to twist round the branch of a tree, and take firm hold of it; and there is a special arrangement by which the principal artery is protected from injury, which it might otherwise sustain from the branches to which the tail clings.
4. The peculiarity of the chameleon which is best known is, however, its power of changing the colour of its skin. The design of this most probably is to enable
, it to conceal itself both from the insects, which are to be its prey, and from enemies, which might attack it. This variety of colours appears in various spots over its body, and is different in different kinds, but its whole hue also varies from pale-grey to bluish-grey or to green.
The change of colour depends upon various causes. Heat always occasions the colour to become deeper, and cold immediately makes it paler. If a tame chameleon be placed upon a fender in front of the fire in a cold day, the side next the fire will become almost black, whilst the cold side is a very pale buff. Fear and hunger will also occasion some curious changes. The former generally produces the sudden appearance of numerous round dark spots.
The following fable will be better understood after this explanation of the structure of the chameleon.
mouth will stop; “Sir, if my judgment you 'll allowI've seen, and sure, I ought to know," So begs you'd pay a due submission, And acquiesce in his decision.
Blade.] Pert fellow.
Two travellers of such a cast,
“Hold there," the other quick replies,
“I've seen it, Sir, as well as you,
“T is green, 't is green, Sir, I assure ye.” “ Green !” cries the other in a fury, “Why, Sir, d'ye think I've lost my eyes ?”
” “'T were no great loss,” the friend replies ; “For, if they always serve you thus, You 'll find them of but little use.'
So high at last the contest rose, From words they almost came to blows : When luckily came by a third : To him the question they referr'd; And begg'd he'd tell 'em if he knew Whether the thing was green or blue. “ Sirs,” cries the umpire, cease your pother : The creature's neither one nor t other.
I caught the animal last night,
“ Well then, at once to ease the doubt,”
don't find him black, I'll eat him.'
find that none
THE USE OF MONEY.-PART I. A MASTER of an industrial school was desirous of giving his scholars some notion of the use of money. So he called together five of the elder boys, and told them that he was going to teach them how to keep shop.
There were five booths erected in various parts of a large common at some distance from each other one
with a supply of meat for a butcher's shop-another full of loaves for a baker's. In a third there were barrels of beer. A fourth was to be a shoemaker's, with sundry boots and shoes; and the fifth a tailor's, with various articles of clothing.
“Now, my boys,” said the master, “each must do the best for himself, and I hope that none will have to go without his dinner. What will you be, Harry?" “I will be the baker,” said Harry, “and I shall have half my dinner in my own shop."
. “And you, John ?" “ The butcher." - For the same reason I suppose. Then Richard shall be the brewer; William the tailor, and Frederick the shoemaker."
All went to their shops. Harry and John felt pretty sure that the others would come to them, so they waited quietly for awhile. Frederick, who saw that he must bestir himself if he did not wish to dine upon shoes, took two or three pair of boots and shoes, and set off for the baker's. “Do you want any shoes?” said he to Harry. Luckily enough Harry considered himself in want of shoes, and after trying on two or three pair, he found one pair that would fit him. These he agreed to take, and as none of the boys had any money, the price was to be paid in loaves; and it was agreed that five quartern loaves would be a fair exchange. Frederick had intended to have gone from the baker's to the butcher's, but he found his loaves and his shoes full as much as he could carry. So he thought it best to take home his loaves first, and then go out in quest of meat. After some little time, he was again on his road with a parcel of shoes and boots, and soon arrived at the butcher's. But to the question-"Do