Harper's Weekly 06/12/1886


The interesting information is brought to us
from Rome that the Capitoline wolf is dead. It
seems that for centuries a live wolf has been kept
in the garden of the Capitol in commemoration of
the great assistance that a wolf once rendered to
the infants Romulus and Remus. The memorial
wolf, of course, has frequently died before, but on
each fatal occasion he has been promptly replaced.
It is likely, however, that the one whose death is
now reported will be notable as the last of his
long line. Of recent years people have com-
plained bitterly of the howling of the wolf at
night, and it is reported that the Roman munici-
pality have decided to do without a live specimen
hereafter. If there is any moral to this bit of
history, it must be that it is well to keep quiet
when you are in the enjoyment of a sinecure.

A Chicago woman writes that she saw some-
thing in Boston recently which in Chicago would
be simply impossible. An audience coming out
from a reading by a Harvard professor found it-
self confronted by a brisk rain. Most of those
who were without umbrellas lingered in the vesti-
bule of the hall where the reading had been given,
but one lady, who had a new and remarkably
pretty bonnet, and no umbrella for its shelter,
was not at all deterred by the storm. Stepping
from the vestibule into a music store which
opened into it, she obtained a sheet of ordinary
brown wrapping-paper, which she deftly formed
into an ample, old-fashioned “shaker,” and put-
ting it on over the bonnet which she wished to
protect, trotted forth into the shower and down
the street, wreathed in smiles, and with a mind
utterly at peace.

A little girl in Iowa, it is said, is obliged to
hold a book or a newspaper upside down when
she reads. She is troubled with a peculiar ocu-
lar perversity which inverts everything. The


most ordinary matters
and occurrences seem
to her extraordinary
phenomena. Persons
who are sitting down
appear to her to be
sitting up, and people
are constantly lying
up and falling up, ac-
cording to her obser-
vation. While eating
bread and milk she
experiences a contin-
ual surprise that the
contents of the bowl
do not drop out.
Why the river does
not tumble down
upon people crossing
a bridge is something
that she does not un-
derstand. The flies
on the ceiling she con-
siders the most rea-
sonable of created

A medical paper
says that if tobacco
is wet with the juice
of the water-cress the
nicotine will be neu-
tralized, and the
smoker may indulge
himself to the top of
his bent without ill ef-
fects. This discovery
will be hailed with
joy by some, while
others will view it
with alarm. The cen-
sors of tobacco who
object to it on the
ground of good taste
will hardly be pleased
to learn that it may
readily be shorn of a
sting which has al-
ways been rather po-
tent in deterring be-
ginners, and which
has even kept most
devotees within
bounds. A great
many who have re-
frained from its use
because they consid-
ered it deleterious
will hardly continue
to reject it merely be-
cause it “makes a
chimney of the nose.”
The unaccustomed
youth who wishes to
smoke will of course
be overjoyed at the
possibility of doing
so without fear of the
awful consequence
which has hitherto
been associated with
a beginning of the
practice. The dis-
covery will be a se-
vere blow to the in-
dustry of making
sweet-fern cigars.

A Nevada paper
says that the tires on
wagon wheels are
rounded off by a stony
road, worn flat by clay,
and hollowed out by
sand; and that in the
Honey Lake Valley
tires are worn in
grooves, or fluted, by
the peculiar combina-
tion of soil; when you
drive north and south
the grooves run
round the tire, but when you drive east and west
they run crosswise, making a cogged wheel. It
is the statement concerning the tires in Honey
Lake Valley that casts discredit upon the Nevada
paper's entire collection of remarks.

A young man in Dakota shot himself in the
breast with a revolver which he had just bought.
Failing to notice any marked effect, he took the
weapon back to the tradesman who had sold it
to him, declared it was worthless, and demanded
and obtained the money he had paid for it. Short-
ly afterward he was obliged to take to his bed,
and he died next day of his wound, without re-
pairing the wrong which in his impatience he had
done to the merchant whose pistol he had em-

“Nearly every town and even village in Switzer-
land has its daily newspaper,” a correspondent de-
clares. Whether all of these newspapers, amount-
ing to upward of four hundred, have a decent
circulation, he does not say. In the old towns
of Europe people have a great habit of borrow-
ing newspapers, and one copy goes a long way.
Besides, the habit of having a town-crier who
cries out notices of meetings and entertainments,
of articles lost and found, of sheriffs' sales, and
of all sorts of other things, must seem to news-
paper owners who have space for advertising
purposes a somewhat onerous custom to get
along with. American communities have the
reputation of being generous to newspapers, but
to an American editor a daily paper in an ordi-
nary village would suggest itself as a frightful


Website design © 2000-2004 HarpWeek, LLC
All Content © 1998-2004 HarpWeek, LLC
Please submit questions to webmaster@harpweek.com