We know how fond the Arabs are of their horses, and how kindly they treat them. There was once an Arab chief who had a horse that was a great favourite with him, and was treated like one of his family.
On one occasion this chief was engaged in war with the Turks. He was defeated in battle, and was taken prisoner with a number of his tribe. On the night after the battle the prisoners had their hands and feet bound with strong cords, and were left in the field outside the Turkish camp to spend the night. The horses were tied to stakes driven into the ground, not far from where their masters were.
This chief could not sleep any that night for thinking of his defeat, and that he should probably never see his family again. As he lay there awake, he could hear the horses neighing, and recognized the voice of his own horse. He wanted very much to get near him. But he could not walk ; yet, after trying a while, he managed, by rolling over the grass, to get close to where his horse was. Then he called him by name, and spoke to him kindly, as he was accustomed to do.
On hearing his master’s voice the horse gave a spring, and broke the cord which bound him to the stake. Then he came up to his master, and rubbed his head against him, and neighed joyfully over him. After this he took hold with his teeth of the cord with which his master was bound, and lifting him from the ground, started off to carry him home. He kept on all that night and the greater part of the following day, stopping occasionally to rest, till finally, arriving at his master’s tent, he laid him down before his family, and then fell to the earth and died.
How noble that was ! Surely that horse did return the kindness that had been showed to him.
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