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Escape Of Jengis Khan

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The Mogul and Kalmuc Tartars attribute to the white owl the preservation
of Jengis Khan, the founder of their empire; and they pay it on that
account almost divine honours. The prince, with a small army, happened to
be surprised and put to flight by his enemies. Forced to seek concealment
in a coppice, an owl settled on the bush under which he was hid. At the
sight of this animal the prince's pursuers never thought of searching the
spot, conceiving it impossible that such a bird would perch where any
human being was concealed. Jengis escaped, and ever after his countrymen
held the white owl sacred, and every one wore a plume of its feathers on
his head. The Kalmucs continue the custom to this day, at all their great
festivals; and some tribes have an idol in the form of an owl, to which
they fasten the real legs of this bird.





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