By Laurence W. Mazzeno, Ronald D. Morrison
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Extra resources for Animals in Victorian Literature and Culture: Contexts for Criticism (Palgrave Studies in Animals and Literature)
He also gave a dramatic account of the fever and ague that nearly cost him his life. ” He related that no medicine or medical man was obtainable, so the “Spaniards [warning him that a white man who attempted to proceed with fever had died earlier] advised me to return to Belize” (Letterbooks). Seven days later a padre ﬁnally gave him some medicine. Similarly Whitﬁeld, fearing Lord Derby might think him negligent, clariﬁed that he was ill in Sierra Leone, and that was why he was delayed in getting in touch.
He informed Lord Derby, on May 8, 1844, that he intended again to solicit the man’s “good ofﬁces which I know will kindly be given and were valuable both from his knowledge and his inﬂuence over the Indians” (Tin Trunk). Following a similar principle, Blyth wrote to Lord Derby that he was going to approach Captain Hutton, for in spite of his eccentricity and his readiness to take offense, the captain was his only chance of procuring various animals and birds from the Northwestern region of the Himalaya (Tin Trunk).
Moreover, in certain areas of Africa it was not easy to circumvent a deeply rooted assumption on the part of local peoples that a foreign agent was supposed to take or to purchase any wild animal or bird from a person who had taken the trouble to catch it. On October 4, 1843 a frustrated Whitﬁeld explained to Lord Derby that the natives believe that if “they have taken the trouble to catch your animal, you must buy it, or they will cease to work” (Letterbooks). The result was that agents unwillingly and occasionally had to carry away inferior specimens or more animals or birds than they or their patron desired.