LIFE AMONG THE LOWLY 297
stealing and doing all sorts of horrid things. That man was caught and whipped, time and again, and it never did him any good; and the last time, he crawled off, though he could n't but just go, and died in the swamp. There was no sort of reason for it, for father's hands were always treated kindly."
"I broke a fellow in once," said St. Clare, "that all the overseers and masters had tried their hands on in vain.
" You!' said Marie ; " well, I 'd be glad to know when you ever did anything of the sort."
" Well, he was a powerful, gigantic fellow, — a native-born African; and he appeared to have the rude instinct of freedom in him to an uncommon degree. He was a regular African lion. They called him Scipio. Nobody could do anything with him; and he was sold round from overseer to overseer, till at last Alfred bought him, because he thought he could manage him. Well, one day he knocked down the overseer, and was fairly off into the swamps. I was on a visit to Alf's plantation, for it was after we had dissolved partnership. Alfred was greatly exasperated; but I told him that it was his own fault, and laid him any wager that I could break the man ; and finally it was agreed that, if I caught him, I should have him to experiment on. So they mustered out a party of some six or seven, with guns and dogs, for the hunt. People, you know, can get up just as much enthusiasm in hunting a man as a deer, if it is only customary; in fact, I got a little excited myself, though I had only put in as a sort of mediator, in case he was caught.
" Well, the dogs bayed and howled, and we rode and scampered, and finally we started him. He ran and bounded like a buck, and kept us well in the rear for some time; but at last he got caught in an impenetrable thicket of cane; then he turned to bay, and I tell you he fought the dogs right gallantly. He dashed them to right and left, and actually killed three of them with only his naked fists, when a shot from a gun brought him down,