Punch,  35 (1858), 146.

The Last of the Long Tails



Essay, Drollery


Astronomy, Hunting, Amusement, Instruments, Observation, Ornithology

    Implicitly likening the tail of the comet to that of a bird, describes the pursuit of the comet as if it were a hunt for a game bird. For example, notes that Giovan B Donati used the 'brace of pointers which belong to Major Ursa' to point out the tail 'some few weeks ago', and that the 'long tail' has been so carefully watched 'that of those who have been nightly taking telescopic shots at it, few have missed hitting it at the first go off'. Describes the amount of 'night poaching' of the 'sidereal preserves' and asserts that Donati should claim the tail for himself. Expresses no surprise at a newspaper report of the comet's tail presenting a '"winged" appearance', not least because so many opera glasses have been directed at the comet.

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