he was, but he will probably be an unequalled rider at eighty, and I am quite sure that if he lives to the age of Methuselah, the extreme of senile irritability will never provoke him to lose his temper with a horse.
Presence of mind under difficulties is the one quality that in riding makes all the difference between getting off with a scramble and going down with a fall. If unvaried kindness has taught your horse to place confidence in his rider, he will have his wits about him, and provide for your safety as for his own. When left to himself, and not flurried by the fear of punishment, even an inexperienced hunter makes surprising efforts to keep on his legs, and it is not too much to say that while his wind lasts, the veteran is almost as difficult to catch tripping as a cat. I have known horses drop their hind legs on places scarcely affording foothold for a goat, but in all such feats they have been ridden by a lover of the animal, who trusts it implicitly, and rules by kindness rather