Open main menu

Page:Mrs Beeton's Book of Household Management.djvu/2004

This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.

about half an hour before he takes a journey. Mix together equal parts of linseed-meal, hog's lard, and tarĀ ; and give for a ball a piece about the size of a walnut, in paper.


The value of clipping for horses cannot be overrated. Every horse that is worked at such a pace as to cause sweating should be clipped at the proper season. The best time for clipping is when the winter coat is "well up," as it is termed. The sooner this is the case the better, for the autumn is proverbially a faint time for horses. The clipping lasts best the later in the year it is done, for the colder the weather the less the coat grows; still, for the reason we have stated, the coat should be taken off as early as possible, and when it starts again, it should be kept down by singeing. Every one must appreciate the benefit of clipping who knows the difficulty of getting a horse, with its winter coat on, dry after a journey. The labour is immense, and, what is worse, generally ineffectual; for the horse after the first drying will break out into a heat again, and in all probability be found quite wet in the morning.

Recipes for the Valet


Three good brushes and good blacking must be provided: one hard brush to brush off the mud; the second soft, to lay on the blacking; the other of a medium hardness, for polishing; and each should be kept for its particular use. The blacking should be kept corked up, except when in use, and applied to the brush with a sponge tied to a stick, which, when put away, rests in a notch cut in the cork. When boots come in very muddy, it is a good practice to wash off the mud, and wipe them dry with a sponge; then leave them to dry very gradually on their sides, taking care they are not placed near the fire, or scorched. Much delicacy of treatment is required in cleaning ladies' boots, so as to make the leather look well-polished, and the upper part retain a fresh appearance, with the lining free from handmarks.


Patent leather boots require to be wiped with a wet sponge, and afterwards with a soft dry cloth, and occasionally with a soft cloth and sweet oil; black and polish the edges of the soles in the usual way, but so as not to cover the patent polish with blacking. A little milk may also be used with very good effect for patent leather boots.


While cleaning the lower part in the usual manner, protect the tops, by inserting a cloth or brown paper under the edges and bringing it