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Mark well the various seasons of the year,
The best Method to make an Artificial Fly,
not a Palmer. First hold your hook fast betwixt the fore-finger, and thumb of your left hand, with the back of the shank upwards, and the point towards your right hand; then take a strong small silk, of the colour most predominant in the fly you intend to make, wax it well with wax of the same colour, and draw it between your finger and thumb to the head of the shank, then whip it twice or thrice about the bare hook, which prevents it slipping, and the shank of the hook from cutting the guit: which being done, take your gut and draw it likewise between your finger and thumb, holding the hook so fast as only
to suffer it to pass by, till the end of the gut is near the middle of the shank of the hook, on the inside of it; then whip the silk twice or thrice about both gut and hook, as hard as the strength of the silk will permit; after that take the wings, which before you began to make your fly you had stripped off the stem for its wings, and proportional to it, and which lie with your other materials by you, as they always should before you begin, and place that side downwards which grew uppermost before, upon the back of the hook, leaving so much only, to serve for the length of the wings of the point of the pluie, laying it reversed from the end of the shank upwards; then whip your silk twice or thrice about the root-end of the feaiher, gut, and hook; which being done, clip off the root-end of the feather close by the arming, and then whip the silk fast and firm about the hook and gut till you come to the bend of it; and then, if the gut goes beyond the bend of the hook, cut it off, and make all fast: take then the dubbing which is to make the body of your fly, as much as you think will do, and holding it lightly with your hook, between the finger and thumb of your left hand, take the silk with the right, and twisting it between the finger and thumb of that hand, the dubbing will spin itself about the silk, which, when it has done, whip it abcut the armed Hook, till you come to the setting on of the wings: afterwards take the feather for the wings, divide it into two equal parts, and turn them back towards the bend of the hook, the one on the one side, the other on the other side of the shank, holding them fast in that posture, between the fore-finger and thumb of your left hand; which being done, warp them so down as to stand, and slope towards the bend of the hook; and having warped up to the end
of the shank, hold the fly fast between the finger and thumb of your left hand, and then take the silk between those of your right, and where the warping ends, pinch or nip it with your thumbnail against your finger, and strip away the remainder of your dubbing from the silk, which wax again, and then with the silk which is newly waxed and bare, whip it once or twice about, make the wings stand properly, then fasten and cut it off: after which, with the point of a needle, raise up the dubbing gently from the warp, twitch off the superfluous hairs of your dubbing, leave the wings of an equal length, (or your fly will never swim true) and the whole is completed.
In this manner you are to make the May-fly, or green-drake, and all other flies that are not palmers; The materials to make the green drake are the following: Your hook must be No. 5, and you must have the white-grey feather of a mallard for the wings, dyed yellow; the dubbing camel's hair, bright bear's hair, yellow camlet, and the soft downt that is combed from the bristles of a hog, well mixed together, the body must be long, and ribbed about with green silk, or rather yellow, waxed with green wax, and three long hairs for his tail, from those off a sable's.
Or, the Muy-fly may be dubbed after this method. The body of seal’s fur, or yellow mohair, a little fox-cub down, and hog's down, or light brown from a turkey carpet, mixed together, warp with green and yellow, pale yellow, or red cock's hackle under the wings, which are to be the same as in the other method of dubbing it.
As I shall not mention the green-drake when I come to describe the other flies taken in the month of May, I will here give you every particular con
cerning cerning it. He comes on the water the twenti-th of that month, and is taken all day long, but best from two to four in the evening, and kiils most fish from the end of May to the ninth of June.
· How to dye the Mallard's feather yellow.
Take the root of a Barbary tree, and shave it, and put to it woody viss, with as much alum as a walnut, and boil your feathers in it with rain water, and they will be of a fine yellow; or get a little weld and recou, and boil your feathers with them, and it will answer the same purpose.
The Names and the best Msanner of dubbing
the different Artificial Flies, which are generally known, and will kill Fishes on any Water, from the Beginning of March to the
End of September. I
March, that being soon enough to throw a fly on the water; nay, in some years is too soon, owing to the backwardness of the season. The incleinency of the weather, before that time, renders the attempt not only unpleasant, but fruitless, to endeavour to take fishes with the fly; and the risk a inan runs of impairing his health, standing by the water-side before the weather is mild and temperate, forms an' objection more strongly
against it. Let an angler be ever so fond of flyfishing he will certainly have enough, perhaps a satiety, between the months of March and September ; besides the mind of man is fond of variety, and there are amusements of the field very pleasant and conducive to health; for. I myself am entirely of Terence's opinion, that
Ad primè in vita effe utile, ut nequid nimis.
1. The Dark Brown. 4. The Thorn, or Haw2. The Great Whirling
thorn Tree-Fly. Dun.
5. The Blue Dun. 3. The Early Bright | 6. The Little Black Gnat. Brown
7. The late bright Brown. 1. Dubbed with the brown hair off the shank of a brinded cow,
feather of a drake for wings.
2. Dubbed with the fur from the bottom of a squirrel's tail, and the wings off the grey feather of a drake. Or, dubbed with squirrel's fur, mixed with about a sixth part of fine hog's down, the wings of a pale orange colour, taken from the quill feather off a ruddy hen, 'the head to be fastened with ash-coloured silk, and a red unbarbed cock's hackle may be warped under the wings, and a turn or two lower towards his tail. This is a very killing fly, and is taken best late in the evening of a blustering warn day.
3. Dubbed with the brown hair off a spaniel, taken from behind the ear, or with that off a red: