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The Character of Dogs

The civilisation, the manners, and the morals of dog-kind[1] are to a
great extent subordinated to those of his ancestral master, man. This
animal, in many ways so superior, has accepted a position of
inferiority, shares the domestic life, and humours the caprices of the
tyrant. But the potentate, like the British in India, pays small
regard to the character of his willing client, judges him with
listless glances, and condemns him in a byword. Listless have been the
looks of his admirers, who have exhausted idle terms of praise, and
buried the poor soul below exaggerations. And yet more idle and, if
possible, more unintelligent has been the attitude of his express
detractors; those who are very fond of dogs "but in their proper
place"; who say "poo' fellow, poo' fellow," and are themselves far
poorer; who whet the knife of the vivisectionist or heat his oven;[2]
who are not ashamed to admire "the creature's instinct"; and flying
far beyond folly, have dared to resuscitate the theory of animal
machines. The "dog's instinct" and the "automaton-dog," in this age of
psychology and science, sound like strange anachronisms. An automaton
he certainly is; a machine working independently of his control, the
heart like the mill-wheel, keeping all in motion, and the
consciousness, like a person shut in the mill garret, enjoying the
view out of the window and shaken by the thunder of the stones; an
automaton in one corner of which a living spirit is confined: an
automaton like man. Instinct again he certainly possesses. Inherited
aptitudes are his, inherited frailties. Some things he at once views
and understands, as though he were awakened from a sleep, as though he
came "trailing clouds of glory."[3] But with him, as with man, the
field of instinct is limited; its utterances are obscure and
occasional; and about the far larger part of life both the dog and his
master must conduct their steps by deduction and observation.

The leading distinction[4] between dog and man, after and perhaps
before the different duration of their lives, is that the one can
speak and that the other cannot. The absence of the power of speech
confines the dog in the development of his intellect. It hinders him
from many speculations, for words are the beginning of metaphysic. At
the same blow it saves him from many superstitions, and his silence
has won for him a higher name for virtue than his conduct justifies.
The faults of the dog[5] are many. He is vainer than man, singularly
greedy of notice, singularly intolerant of ridicule, suspicious like
the deaf, jealous to the degree of frenzy, and radically devoid of
truth. The day of an intelligent small dog is passed in the
manufacture and the laborious communication of falsehood; he lies with
his tail, he lies with his eye, he lies with his protesting paw; and
when he rattles his dish or scratches at the door his purpose is other
than appears. But he has some apology to offer for the vice. Many of
the signs which form his dialect have come to bear an arbitrary
meaning, clearly understood both by his master and himself; yet when a
new want arises he must either invent a new vehicle of meaning or
wrest an old one to a different purpose; and this necessity frequently
recurring must tend to lessen his idea of the sanctity of symbols.
Meanwhile the dog is clear in his own conscience, and draws, with a
human nicety, the distinction between formal and essential truth. Of
his punning perversions, his legitimate dexterity with symbols, he is
even vain; but when he has told and been detected in a lie, there is
not a hair upon his body but confesses guilt. To a dog of gentlemanly
feeling theft and falsehood are disgraceful vices. The canine, like
the human, gentleman demands in his misdemeanours Montaigne's "_je ne
sais quoi de genéréux_."[6] He is never more than half ashamed of
having barked or bitten; and for those faults into which he has been
led by the desire to shine before a lady of his race, he retains, even
under physical correction, a share of pride. But to be caught lying,
if he understands it, instantly uncurls his fleece.

Just as among dull observers he preserves a name for truth, the dog
has been credited with modesty. It is amazing how the use of language
blunts the faculties of man---that because vainglory finds no vent in
words, creatures supplied with eyes have been unable to detect a fault
so gross and obvious. If a small spoiled dog were suddenly to be
endowed with speech, he would prate interminably, and still about
himself; when we had friends, we should be forced to lock him in a
garret; and what with his whining jealousies and his foible for
falsehood, in a year's time he would have gone far to weary out our
love. I was about to compare him to Sir Willoughby Patterne,[7] but
the Patternes have a manlier sense of their own merits; and the
parallel, besides, is ready. Hans Christian Andersen,[8] as we behold
him in his startling memoirs, thrilling from top to toe with an
excruciating vanity, and scouting even along the street for shadows of
offence--here was the talking dog.

It is just this rage for consideration that has betrayed the dog into
his satellite position as the friend of man. The cat, an animal of
franker appetites, preserves his independence. But the dog, with one
eye ever on the audience, has been wheedled into slavery, and praised
and patted into the renunciation of his nature. Once he ceased
hunting[9] and became man's plate-licker, the Rubicon was crossed.
Thenceforth he was a gentleman of leisure; and except the few whom we
keep working, the whole race grew more and more self-conscious,
mannered and affected. The number of things that a small dog does
naturally is strangely small. Enjoying better spirits and not crushed
under material cares, he is far more theatrical than average man. His
whole life, if he be a dog of any pretension to gallantry, is spent in
a vain show, and in the hot pursuit of admiration. Take out your puppy
for a walk, and you will find the little ball of fur clumsy, stupid,
bewildered, but natural. Let but a few months pass, and when you
repeat the process you will find nature buried in convention. He will
do nothing plainly; but the simplest processes of our material life
will all be bent into the forms of an elaborate and mysterious
etiquette. Instinct, says the fool, has awakened. But it is not so.
Some dogs--some, at the very least--if they be kept separate from
others, remain quite natural; and these, when at length they meet with
a companion of experience, and have the game explained to them,
distinguish themselves by the severity of their devotion to its rules.
I wish I were allowed to tell a story which would radiantly illuminate
the point; but men, like dogs, have an elaborate and mysterious
etiquette. It is their bond of sympathy that both are the children of
convention.

The person, man or dog, who has a conscience is eternally condemned to
some degree of humbug; the sense of the law in their members[10]
fatally precipitates either towards a frozen and affected bearing. And
the converse is true; and in the elaborate and conscious manners of
the dog, moral opinions and the love of the ideal stand confessed. To
follow for ten minutes in the street some swaggering, canine cavalier,
is to receive a lesson in dramatic art and the cultured conduct of the
body; in every act and gesture you see him true to a refined
conception; and the dullest cur, beholding him, pricks up his ear and
proceeds to imitate and parody that charming ease. For to be a
high-mannered and high-minded gentleman, careless, affable, and gay,
is the inborn pretension of the dog. The large dog, so much lazier, so
much more weighed upon with matter, so majestic in repose, so
beautiful in effort, is born with the dramatic means to wholly
represent the part. And it is more pathetic and perhaps more
instructive to consider the small dog in his conscientious and
imperfect efforts to outdo Sir Philip Sidney.[11] For the ideal of the
dog is feudal and religious;[12] the ever-present polytheism, the
whip-bearing Olympus of mankind, rules them on the one hand; on the
other, their singular difference of size and strength among themselves
effectually prevents the appearance of the democratic notion. Or we
might more exactly compare their society to the curious spectacle
presented by a school--ushers, monitors, and big and little
boys--qualified by one circumstance, the introduction of the other
sex. In each, we should observe a somewhat similar tension of manner,
and somewhat similar points of honour. In each the larger animal keeps
a contemptuous good humour; in each the smaller annoys him with
wasp-like impudence, certain of practical immunity; in each we shall
find a double life producing double characters, and an excursive and
noisy heroism combined with a fair amount of practical timidity. I
have known dogs, and I have known school heroes that, set aside the
fur, could hardly have been told apart; and if we desire to understand
the chivalry of old, we must turn to the school playfields or the
dungheap where the dogs are trooping.

Woman, with the dog, has been long enfranchised. Incessant massacre of
female innocents has changed the proportions of the sexes and
perverted their relations. Thus, when we regard the manners of the
dog, we see a romantic and monogamous animal, once perhaps as delicate
as the cat, at war with impossible conditions. Man has much to answer
for; and the part he plays is yet more damnable and parlous[13] than
Corin's in the eyes of Touchstone. But his intervention has at least
created an imperial situation for the rare surviving ladies. In that
society they reign without a rival: conscious queens; and in the only
instance of a canine wife-beater that has ever fallen under my notice,
the criminal was somewhat excused by the circumstances of his story.
He is a little, very alert, well-bred, intelligent Skye, as black as a
hat, with a wet bramble for a nose and two cairn-gorms[14] for eyes.
To the human observer, he is decidedly well-looking; but to the ladies
of his race he seems abhorrent. A thorough elaborate gentleman, of the
plume and sword-knot order, he was born with the nice sense of
gallantry to women. He took at their hands the most outrageous
treatment; I have heard him bleating like a sheep, I have seen him
streaming blood, and his ear tattered like a regimental banner; and
yet he would scorn to make reprisals. Nay more, when a human lady
upraised the contumelious whip against the very dame who had been so
cruelly misusing him, my little great-heart gave but one hoarse cry
and fell upon the tyrant tooth and nail. This is the tale of a soul's
tragedy.[15] After three years of unavailing chivalry, he suddenly, in
one hour, threw off the yoke of obligation; had he been Shakespeare he
would then have written _Troilus and Cressida_[16] to brand the
offending sex; but being only a little dog, he began to bite them. The
surprise of the ladies whom he attacked indicated the monstrosity of
his offence; but he had fairly beaten off his better angel, fairly
committed moral suicide; for almost in the same hour, throwing aside
the last rags of decency, he proceeded to attack the aged also. The
fact is worth remark, showing as it does, that ethical laws are common
both to dogs and men; and that with both a single deliberate violation
of the conscience loosens all. "But while the lamp holds on to burn,"
says the paraphrase, "the greatest sinner may return."[17] I have been
cheered to see symptoms of effectual penitence in my sweet ruffian;
and by the handling that he accepted uncomplainingly the other day
from an indignant fair one, I begin to hope the period of _Sturm und
Drang_[18] is closed.

All these little gentlemen are subtle casuists. The duty to the female
dog is plain; but where competing duties rise, down they will sit and
study them out like Jesuit confessors.[19] I knew another little Skye,
somewhat plain in manner and appearance, but a creature compact of
amiability and solid wisdom. His family going abroad for a winter, he
was received for that period by an uncle in the same city. The winter
over, his own family home again, and his own house (of which he was
very proud) reopened, he found himself in a dilemma between two
conflicting duties of loyalty and gratitude. His old friends were not
to be neglected, but it seemed hardly decent to desert the new. This
was how he solved the problem. Every morning, as soon as the door was
opened, off posted Coolin to his uncle's, visited the children in the
nursery, saluted the whole family, and was back at home in time for
breakfast and his bit of fish. Nor was this done without a sacrifice
on his part, sharply felt; for he had to forego the particular honour
and jewel of his day--his morning's walk with my father. And perhaps,
from this cause, he gradually wearied of and relaxed the practice, and
at length returned entirely to his ancient habits. But the same
decision served him in another and more distressing case of divided
duty, which happened not long after. He was not at all a kitchen dog,
but the cook had nursed him with unusual kindness during the
distemper; and though he did not adore her as he adored my
father--although (born snob) he was critically conscious of her
position as "only a servant"--he still cherished for her a special
gratitude. Well, the cook left, and retired some streets away to
lodgings of her own; and there was Coolin in precisely the same
situation with any young gentleman who has had the inestimable benefit
of a faithful nurse. The canine conscience did not solve the problem
with a pound of tea at Christmas. No longer content to pay a flying
visit, it was the whole forenoon that he dedicated to his solitary
friend. And so, day by day, he continued to comfort her solitude until
(for some reason which I could never understand and cannot approve) he
was kept locked up to break him of the graceful habit. Here, it is not
the similarity, it is the difference, that is worthy of remark; the
clearly marked degrees of gratitude and the proportional duration of
his visits. Anything further removed from instinct it were hard to
fancy; and one is even stirred to a certain impatience with a
character so destitute of spontaneity, so passionless in justice, and
so priggishly obedient to the voice of reason.

There are not many dogs like this good Coolin. and not many people.
But the type is one well marked, both in the human and the canine
family. Gallantry was not his aim, but a solid and somewhat oppressive
respectability. He was a sworn foe to the unusual and the conspicuous,
a praiser of the golden mean, a kind of city uncle modified by
Cheeryble.[20] And as he was precise and conscientious in all the
steps of his own blameless course, he looked for the same precision
and an even greater gravity in the bearing of his deity, my father. It
was no sinecure to be Coolin's idol; he was exacting like a rigid
parent; and at every sign of levity in the man whom he respected, he
announced loudly the death of virtue and the proximate fall of the
pillars of the earth.

I have called him a snob; but all dogs are so, though in varying
degrees. It is hard to follow their snobbery among themselves; for
though I think we can perceive distinctions of rank, we cannot grasp
what is the criterion. Thus in Edinburgh, in a good part of the town,
there were several distinct societies or clubs that met in the morning
to--the phrase is technical--to "rake the backets"[21] in a troop. A
friend of mine, the master of three dogs, was one day surprised to
observe that they had left one club and joined another; but whether it
was a rise or a fall, and the result of an invitation or an expulsion,
was more than he could guess. And this illustrates pointedly our
ignorance of the real life of dogs, their social ambitions and their
social hierarchies. At least, in their dealings with men they are not
only conscious of sex, but of the difference of station. And that in
the most snobbish manner; for the poor man's dog is not offended by
the notice of the rich, and keeps all his ugly feeling for those
poorer or more ragged than his master. And again, for every station
they have an ideal of behaviour, to which the master, under pain of
derogation, will do wisely to conform. How often has not a cold glance
of an eye informed me that my dog was disappointed; and how much more
gladly would he not have taken a beating than to be thus wounded in
the seat of piety!

I knew one disrespectable dog. He was far liker a cat; cared little or
nothing for men, with whom he merely coexisted as we do with cattle,
and was entirely devoted to the art of poaching. A house would not
hold him, and to live in a town was what he refused. He led, I
believe, a life of troubled but genuine pleasure, and perished beyond
all question in a trap. But this was an exception, a marked reversion
to the ancestral type; like the hairy human infant. The true dog of
the nineteenth century, to judge by the remainder of my fairly large
acquaintance, is in love with respectability. A street-dog was once
adopted by a lady. While still an Arab, he had done as Arabs do,
gambolling in the mud, charging into butchers' stalls, a cat-hunter, a
sturdy beggar, a common rogue and vagabond; but with his rise into
society he laid aside these inconsistent pleasures. He stole no more,
he hunted no more cats; and conscious of his collar he ignored his old
companions. Yet the canine upper class was never brought to recognize
the upstart, and from that hour, except for human countenance, he was
alone. Friendless, shorn of his sports and the habits of a lifetime,
he still lived in a glory of happiness, content with his acquired
respectability, and with no care but to support it solemnly. Are we to
condemn or praise this self-made dog! We praise his human brother. And
thus to conquer vicious habits is as rare with dogs as with men. With
the more part, for all their scruple-mongering and moral thought, the
vices that are born with them remain invincible throughout; and they
live all their years, glorying in their virtues, but still the slaves
of their defects. Thus the sage Coolin was a thief to the last; among
a thousand peccadilloes, a whole goose and a whole cold leg of mutton
lay upon his conscience; but Woggs,[22] whose soul's shipwreck in the
matter of gallantry I have recounted above, has only twice been known
to steal, and has often nobly conquered the temptation. The eighth is
his favourite commandment. There is something painfully human in these
unequal virtues and mortal frailties of the best. Still more painful
is the bearing of those "stammering professors"[23] in the house of
sickness and under the terror of death. It is beyond a doubt to me
that, somehow or other, the dog connects together, or confounds, the
uneasiness of sickness and the consciousness of guilt. To the pains of
the body he often adds the tortures of the conscience; and at these
times his haggard protestations form, in regard to the human deathbed,
a dreadful parody or parallel.

I once supposed that I had found an inverse relation between the
double etiquette which dogs obey; and that those who were most
addicted to the showy street life among other dogs were less careful
in the practice of home virtues for the tyrant man. But the female
dog, that mass of carneying[24] affectations, shines equally in either
sphere; rules her rough posse of attendant swains with unwearying tact
and gusto; and with her master and mistress pushes the arts of
insinuation to their crowning point. The attention of man and the
regard of other dogs flatter (it would thus appear) the same
sensibility; but perhaps, if we could read the canine heart, they
would be found to flatter it in very marked degrees. Dogs live with
man as courtiers round a monarch, steeped in the flattery of his
notice and enriched with sinecures. To push their favour in this world
of pickings and caresses is, perhaps, the business of their lives; and
their joys may lie outside. I am in despair at our persistent
ignorance. I read in the lives of our companions the same processes of
reason, the same antique and fatal conflicts of the right against the
wrong, and of unbitted nature with too rigid custom; I see them with
our weaknesses, vain, false, inconstant against appetite, and with our
one stalk of virtue, devoted to the dream of an ideal; and yet, as
they hurry by me on the street with tail in air, or come singly to
solicit my regard, I must own the secret purport of their lives is
still inscrutable to man. Is man the friend, or is he the patron only?
Have they indeed forgotten nature's voice? or are those moments
snatched from courtiership when they touch noses with the tinker's
mongrel, the brief reward and pleasure of their artificial lives?
Doubtless, when man shares with his dog the toils of a profession and
the pleasures of an art, as with the shepherd or the poacher, the
affection warms and strengthens till it fills the soul. But doubtless,
also, the masters are, in many cases, the object of a merely
interested cultus, sitting aloft like Louis Quatorze,[25] giving and
receiving flattery and favour; and the dogs, like the majority of men,
have but forgotten their true existence and become the dupes of their
ambition.


NOTES

This article originally appeared in _The English Illustrated Magazine_
for May 1883, Vol. I, pp. 300-305. It was accompanied with
illustrations by Randolph Caldecott. The essay was later included in
the volume _Memories and Portraits_ (1887).

The astonishing fidelity and devotion of the dog to his master have
certainly been in part repaid by men of letters in all times. A
valuable essay might be written on the Dog's Place in Literature; in
the poetry of the East, hundreds of years before Christ, the dog's
faithfulness was more than once celebrated. One of the most marvellous
passages in Homer's _Odyssey_ is the recognition of the ragged Ulysses
by the noble old dog, who dies of joy. In recent years, since the
publication of Dr. John Brown's _Rab and his Friends_ (1858), the dog
has approached an apotheosis. Among innumerable sketches and stories
with canine heroes may be mentioned Bret Harte's extraordinary
portrait of _Boonder_: M. Maeterlinck's essay on dogs: Richard Harding
Davis's _The Bar Sinister_: Jack London's _The Call of the Wild_: and
best of all, Alfred Ollivant's splendid story _Bob, Son of Battle_
(1898) which has every indication of becoming an English classic. It
is a pity that dogs cannot read.

[Note 1: _The morals of dog-kind_. Stevenson discusses this subject
again in his essay _Pulvis et Umbra_ (1888).]

[Note 2: _Who whet the knife of the vivisectionist or heat his oven_.
Stevenson was so sympathetic by nature that once, seeing a man beating
a dog, he interfered, crying, "It's not your dog, it's God's dog." On
the subject of vivisection, however his biographer says: "It must be
laid to the credit of his reason and the firm balance of his judgment
that although vivisection was a subject he could not endure even to
have mentioned, yet, with all his imagination and sensibility, he
never ranged himself among the opponents of this method of inquiry,
provided, of course, it was limited, as in England, with the utmost
rigour possible."--Balfour's _Life_, II, 217. The two most powerful
opponents of vivisection among Stevenson's contemporaries were Ruskin
and Browning. The former resigned the Professorship of Poetry at
Oxford because vivisection was permitted at the University: and the
latter in two poems _Tray_ and _Arcades Ambo_ treated the
vivisectionists with contempt, implying that they were cowards. In
Bernard Shaw's clever novel _Cashel Byron's Profession_, The
prize-fighter maintains that his profession is more honorable than
that of a man who bakes dogs in an oven. This novel, by the way, which
he read in the winter of 1887-88, made an extraordinary impression on
Stevenson; he recognised its author's originality and cleverness
immediately, and was filled with curiosity as to what kind of person
this Shaw might be. "Tell me more of the inimitable author," he cried.
It is a pity that Stevenson did not live to see the vogue of Shaw as a
dramatist, for the latter's early novels produced practically no
impression on the public. See Stevenson's highly entertaining letter
to William Archer, _Letters_, II, 107.]

[Note 3: "_Trailing clouds of glory_." _Trailing with him clouds of
glory._ This passage, from Wordsworth's _Ode on the Intimations of
Immortality_ (1807), was a favorite one with Stevenson, and he quotes
it several times in various essays.]

[Note 4: _The leading distinction_. Those who know dogs will fully
agree with Stevenson here.]

[Note 5: _The faults of the dog_. All lovers of dogs will by no means
agree with Stevenson in his enumeration of canine sins.]

[Note 6: _Montaigne's "je ne sais quoi de généreux_." A bit of
generosity. Montaigne's _Essays_ (1580) had an enormous influence on
Stevenson, as they have had on nearly all literary men for three
hundred years. See his article in this volume, _Books Which Save
Influenced Me_, and the discussion of the "personal essay" in our
general Introduction.]

[Note 7: _Sir Willoughby Patterne_. Again a character in Meredith's
_Egoist_. See our Note 47 of Chapter IV above.]

[Note 8: _Hans Christian Andersen_. A Danish writer of prodigious
popularity: born 1805, died 1875. His books were translated into many
languages. The "memoirs" Stevenson refers to, were called _The Story
of My Life_, in which the author brought the narrative only so far as
1847: it was, however, finished by another hand. He is well known to
juvenile readers by his _Stories for Children_.]

[Note 9: _Once he ceased hunting and became man's plate-licker, the
Rubicon was crossed_. For a reversion to type, where the plate-licker
goes back to hunting, see Mr. London's powerful story, _The Call of
the Wild_. ... The "Rubicon" was a small stream separating Cisalpine
Gaul from Italy. Caesar crossed it in 49 B. C, thus taking a decisive
step in deliberately advancing into Italy. "Plutarch, in his life of
Caesar, makes quite a dramatic scene out of the crossing of the
Rubicon. Caesar does not even mention it."--B. Perrin's ed. of
_Caesar's Civil War_, p. 142.]

[Note 10: _The law in their members. Romans_, VII, 23. "But I see
another law in my members."]

[Note 11: _Sir Philip Sidney_. The stainless Knight of Elizabeth's
Court, born 1554, died 1586. The pages of history afford no better
illustration of the "gentleman and the scholar." Poet, romancer,
critic, courtier, soldier, his beautiful life was crowned by a noble
death.]

[Note 12: _The ideal of the dog is feudal and religious_. Maeterlinck
says the dog is the only being who has found and is absolutely sure of
his God.]

[Note 13: _Damnable and parlous than Corin's in the eyes of
Touchstone_. See _As You Like It_, Act III, Sc. 2. "Sin is damnation:
Thou art in a parlous state, shepherd."]

[Note 14: _Cairn-gorms_. Brown or yellow quartz, found in the mountain
of Cairngorm, Scotland, over 4000 feet high. Stevenson's own dog,
"Woggs" or "Bogue," was a black Skye terrier, whom the author seems
here to have in mind. See Note 20 of this Chapter, below, "Woggs."]

[Note 15: _A Soul's Tragedy_. The title of a tragedy by Browning,
published in 1846.]

[Note 16: _Troilus and Cressida_. One of the most bitter and cynical
plays ever written; practically never seen on the English stage, it
was successfully revived at Berlin, in September 1904.]

[Note 17: "_While the lamp holds on to burn ... the greatest sinner
may return_." From a hymn by Isaac Watts (1674-1748), beginning

"Life is the time to serve the Lord,
The time to insure the great reward;
And while the lamp holds out to burn,
The vilest sinner may return."

Although this stanza has no remarkable merit, many of Watts's hymns
are genuine poetry.]

[Note 18: _Sturm und Drang_. This German expression has been well
translated "Storm and Stress." It was applied to the literature in
Germany (and in Europe) the latter part of the XVIIIth century, which
was characterised by emotional excess of all kinds. A typical book of
the period was Goethe's _Sorrows of Werther_ (_Die Leiden des jungen
Werthers_, 1774). The expression is also often applied to the period
of adolescence in the life of the individual.]

[Note 19: _Jesuit confessors_. The Jesuits, or Society of Jesus, one
of the most famous religious orders of the Roman Catholic Church, was
founded in 1534 by Ignatius of Loyola and a few others.]

[Note 20: _Modified by Cheeryble_. The Cheeryble Brothers are
characters in Dickens's _Nicholas Nickleby_ (1838-9). Dickens said in
his Preface, "Those who take an interest in this tale, will be glad to
learn that the BROTHERS CHEERYBLE live: that their liberal charity,
their singleness of heart, their noble nature ... are no creations of
the Author's brain."]

[Note 21: "_Rake the backets_." The "backet" is a small, square,
wooden trough generally used for ashes and waste.]

[Note 22: _Woggs_ (_and Note: Walter, Watty, Woggy, Woggs, Wog, and
lastly Bogue; under which last name he fell in battle some twelve
months ago. Glory was his aim and he attained it; for his icon, by the
hand of Caldecott, now lies among the treasures of the nation.)
Stevenson's well-beloved black Skye terrier. See Balfour's _Life_, I,
212, 223. Stevenson was so deeply affected by Woggs's death that he
could not bear ever to own another dog. A Latin inscription was placed
on his tombstone.... This Note was added in 1887, when the essay
appeared in _Memories and Portraits_. "Icon" means image (cf.
_iconoclast_); the word has lately become familiar through the
religious use of icons by the Russians in the war with Japan. Randolph
Caldecott (1846-1886) was a well-known artist and prominent
contributor of sketches to illustrated magazines.]

[Note 23: "_Stammering Professors_." A "professor" here means simply a
professing Christian. Stevenson alludes to the fact that dogs howl
fearfully if some one in the house is dying.]

[Note 24: "_Carneying_." This means coaxing, wheedling.]

[Note 25: _Louis Quatorze_. Louis XIV of France, who died in 1715,
after a reign of 72 years, the longest reign of any monarch in
history. His absolutism and complete disregard of the people
unconsciously prepared the way for the French Revolution in 1789.]

Robert Louis Stevenson

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