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This animal neither practised the grimaces nor antics of other monkeys, nor possessed their impudence and love of mischief. He often appeared grave and melancholy, and when he first came among strangers, would sit for hours with his hand on his head, looking pensively at all around him, and sometimes would hide himself from their notice beneath any covering that was at hand. His mildness was evinced by his forbearance under injuries, which were indeed grievous before he was excited to revenge; but he always avoided those who teased him, and became strongly attached to those who used him more kindly; would sit by their side as closely as possible, take their hands between his lips, and fly to them for protection. From the boatswain of the Alceste, who was his chief favourite, he learned to eat with a spoon; and, though he occasionally purloined the biscuit and grog of his benefactor, might be often seen sitting at his cabin door, enjoying his coffee with a sober air of great satisfaction. Of some small monkeys on board he took little notice whilst under the observations of the people in the ship. Once, indeed, he openly attempted to throw a cage containing three small ones into the sea; but this, perhaps, might arise from their having received some food, of which he had no part. But although he held so little intercourse with them when under our inspection, I had reason to suspect that he was less indifferent to their society when free from our observations, and was one day summoned to the top-gallant-yard of the mizen-mast to overlook him playing with a young male monkey. Lying on his back, partially covered with the sail, he for some time contemplated the gambols of the monkey which bounded over him, but at length caught him by the tail, and endeavoured to envelope him in his covering. The monkey, disliking confinement, broke from him, but always resumed his gambols; and although frequently caught, always escaped. But the orang-otan never condescended to romp with the monkeys as he did with the boys of the ship, though they evidently had a great pleasure in his company, frequently when they broke loose finding their way to his resting-place, and lurking about it.
"But although so gentle when not exceedingly irritated, the orang-otan could be excited to violent rage, which he expressed by opening his mouth, showing his teeth, seizing and biting those who were near him. I have seen him exhibit violent alarm on two occasions only, when he appeared to seek for safety in gaining as high an elevation as possible. On seeing eight large turtle brought on board from the Island of Ascension he climbed with all possible speed to a higher part of the ship than he had ever reached before, and looking down upon them, projected his long lips into the form of a hog's snout, uttering a sound between the croaking of a frog and the grunting of a pig. After some time he ventured to descend, but with great caution, peeping continually at the turtle, but could not be induced to go within many yards of them. He ran to the same height and uttered the same sounds on seeing some men bathing and splashing in the sea; and after his arrival in England, showed nearly the same degree of fear at the sight of a living tortoise." The black oran, or chimpanzee, is a native of Africa: it is said to live in vast troops, and is greatly to be dreaded by persons travelling alone in the forests. Young animals alone, of either the red or black orang, have been exhibited in this country; but the natives of Gaboon informed Captain Payne, who brought a young one from Africa, that there the chimpanzee attained the height of five or six feet, and that several of them would not scruple to attack the lion, or even the elephant, with clubs and stones. Similar feats have been recently stated very circumstantially by gentlemen who have lived in Western Africa. They have been known to throw stones at people who offended them, and Bosman tell us, "that several of the orangs fell upon two slaves belonging to the company, and would have poked their eyes out with sticks, had not a party of negroes happened to come up and rescue them." Gunelli Carrari relates an anecdote of their singular sagacity. He says, "that when the mountain fruit is exhausted, they frequently descend to the sea-coasts, where they feed on various species of shell-fish, and in particular on a large species of oyster, which commonly lies open on the shore; that fearing (perhaps from former experience) that the oyster may close its shell and crush their hands, they place a stone within the shell to prevent it from so doing, and then drag out their prey and eat it at leisure."
Two very young specimens of the black and red orang-otan were exhibited together in the Egyptian Hall, Piccadilly, in 1831, and afforded a great treat to the lovers of Natural History. The former had been procured by a trading vessel on the river Gambia, and was much the more pleasing of the two. He was compared to a black child, but with a head of overgrown proportions, and was very docile, and generally playful and gentle. Like all his tribe, he was fond of wine and water, or diluted spirits; and they were used as an incentive for him to perform his part before strangers. On one occasion when these animals were dining off boiled chicken and potatoes, a rather luxurious repast, and surrounded as usual with a large party of visitors, the orang-otan allowed her plate to be taken away without showing the least concern; not so, however, the chim