The pistol shots were almost simultaneous. A cow peacefully grazing fifty yards away received one of the bullets in her back. She had nothing to do with the quarrel all the same. Neither of the adversaries was hit.
Who were these two gentlemen? We do not know, although this would be an excellent opportunity to hand down their names to posterity. All we can say is that the elder was an Englishman and the younger an American, and both of them were old enough to know better.
So far as recording in what locality the inoffensive ruminant had just tasted her last tuft of herbage, nothing can be easier. It was on the left bank of Niagara, not far from the suspension bridge which joins the American to the Canadian bank three miles from the falls. The Englishman stepped up to the American.
«I contend, nevertheless, that it was ‘Rule Britannia!'»
«And I say it was ‘Yankee Doodle!'» replied the young American. The dispute was about to begin again when one of the seconds doubtless in the interests of the milk trade interposed. «Suppose we say it was ‘Rule Doodle’ and ‘Yankee Britannia’ and adjourn to breakfast?»