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several heavy falls on my hat, but I took rather a pride
in that, since my sole intention was to impress the
Master with my keenness. Up to Christmas the
hounds showed very moderate sport; scent was bad,
but I overheard a lot of grumbling (mainly from
unenterprising riders) about Milden being such a slow
huntsman. Certainly he seemed in no hurry, but I
was always quite satisfied, myself, as long as I had
done plenty of jumping by the end of a day.

And our amateur huntsman, as I afterwards dis-
covered, knew exactly what he was doing. As soon
as he took over the country he had asserted his
independence by getting rid of the Ringwell dog-
pack, on which the members had always prided
themselves so much. To the prudent protestations of
the Committee he replied bluntly that although the
dog-hounds were all right to listen to in the woods,
they were too slow for words on the unenclosed
downs, and too big and cloddy for the cramped and
strongly fenced vale country. He added that Ben
Trotter had got them into terrible bad habits and he
wasn't going to waste his time teaching them how to

Shortly afterwards he had bought five-and-twenty
couple of unentered bitches at Rugby Hound Sales;
so that, when the Ringwell-bred puppies came in
from walk, he began the season with no less than
thirty-seven couple of unentered hounds. To those
people who properly understood hunting his patient
methods must have been a welcome contrast to the
harum-scarum, hoicking, horn-blowing "which way'd
'e go?" performances of the late huntsman.

Denis Milden refused to lift his hounds unless he
was obliged to do so, and in this way he taught them
to hunt on a catchy scent without looking for help,