Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The Cub of the Panther: A Hunter Legend of the ''Old North State'' >> Book First / Chapter One >> Page 5

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Novel (Romance) | The University of Arkansas Press | 1997
Transcription CHAPTER ONE
"The hunter's cabin there,
Perch'd on the mountain summit, hangs in air."
THE LITTLE CABIN seemed literally to swing in the air. It occupied a peak of the grand Apalachian chain, which, stretching from Virginia, makes the great backbone of North Carolina, and sends num-
bers of its spurs into her sister State of the South.
These mountains constitute the Helvetia of all this region. Very
grand and beautiful are they to behold, some of their Cyclopean masses
being, by far, the loftiest in all the United States proper. Perched on
these, you gaze, as it were, over a vast sea of mountains; masses of iso-
lated rock, showing, for all the world, like the foam-scalps of the sea.
Great gorges and valleys, massed together with deep thickets of laurel,
separate the heights, adown whose sides the frequent cataract dashes
headlong, like some sheeted ghost, eager to escape the dazzling glances
of the sun.
On one of these spurs of the great range, which borders South
Carolina, and looks downward over its plains with its little table
ground in front, and its vegetable garden in the rear with scattered
groups of apple and peach trees about it and with a little waterfall,
from a perpetual rivulet on one of its sides stood the log cabin of the
hunter, from the entrance of which he surveyed the summits of a thou-
sand hills, and the hollows which lurked among them.
These were his preserves of game. From these he gleaned his sports
and trophies of the chase. The tangled thickets below were famous har-
boring places for bear and deer, and the more subtle and formidable