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Cat and Dog Memoirs of Puss and the Captain   By: (-1864)

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Memoirs of Puss and the Captain.

A Story founded on Fact.

By the Author of

"The Doll and Her Friends," "Letters from Madras," "Historical Acting Charades," Etc.

Fifth Edition.

With Illustrations by Harrison Weir.


London: Griffith and Farran, Late Grant and Griffith, Successors to Newbery and Harris, Corner of St. Paul's Churchyard. MDCCCLVIII.


The Author begs to assure her young readers that the principal circumstances on which this little story is founded are true. The friendship between the two animals, the dog's journey home, and return in company with his friend, are facts which occurred within her own knowledge.





I am going to relate the history of a pleasant and prosperous life; for though a few misfortunes may have befallen me, my pleasures have far exceeded them, and especially I have been treated with such constant cordiality and kindness as would not fail to ensure the happiness of man or beast. But though I have no reason to complain of my destiny, it is a remarkable fact, that my principal happiness has been produced by conforming myself to unfavourable circumstances, and reconciling myself to an unnatural fate.

Nature herself did well by me. I am a fine setter, of a size that a Newfoundland dog could not despise, and a beauty that a Blenheim spaniel might envy. With a white and brown curly coat, drooping ears, bushy tail, a delicate pink nose, and good natured brown eyes, active, strong, honest, gentle, and obedient, I have always felt a conscious pride and pleasure in being a thoroughly well bred dog.

My condition in life was peculiarly comfortable. I was brought up in an old manor house inhabited by a gentleman and his daughter, with several respectable and good natured servants. My education was conducted with care, and from my earliest youth I had the advantage of an introduction into good society. I was not, indeed, allowed to come much into the drawing room, as my master said I was too large for a drawing room dog; but I had the range of the lower part of the house, and constant admittance to his study, where I was welcome to share his fireside while he read the newspapers or received visitors. I took great interest in his friends; and by means of listening to their conversation, watching them from under my eyelids while they thought I was asleep, and smelling them carefully, I could form a sufficiently just estimate of their characters to regulate my own conduct towards them. Though a polite dog both by birth and breeding, I was too honest and independent to show the same respect and cordiality towards those whom I liked and those whom I despised; and though very grateful for the smallest favours from persons I esteemed, no flattery, caresses, or benefactions could induce me to strike up an intimacy with one who did not please me. If I had been able to speak, I should have expressed my opinions without ceremony; and it often surprised me that my master, who could say what he pleased, did not quarrel with people, and tell them all their faults openly. I thought, if I had been he, I would have had many a fight with intruders, to whom he was not only civil himself, but compelled me to be so too. I have often observed that it appears proper for human beings to observe a kind of respect even towards persons they dislike; a line of conduct which brutes cannot understand.

However, I was not without my own methods of showing my sentiments. If I felt indifferent or contemptuous towards a person entering the room, I merely opened one eye and yawned at him. If he attempted any compliments, calling me "Good Captain," "Fine Dog," and trying to pat me, I shook off his hand, and rising from my rug, turned once round, and curling my tail under me, sank down again to my repose without taking any further notice of him... Continue reading book >>

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