Spurs, a well-known contrivance, or machines consisting of plated steel, silver, etc. fitted to the hind -quarters of a horseman's boots, and furnished with a rowel, which sqU turns on an axis, in order to urge the animal to greater speed.
In July, 1786, a patent was granted to Mr. Thomas Ches-ton, for an invention of making spurs, and elastic spring-buckles. His improvement consists in giving the metallic substances the requisite forms, by means of dies, worked either with a hammer, or by machinery ; after which they are rolled, and submitted to an oven, stove, or other place, heated by fire, till they become nearly red-hot. The spurs, etc. are then immersed in oil, water, turpentine, butter, or other matter, with the addition of salt, to render them hard; next, they are tempered by various processes, till they become elastic. - A more ample description of the patentee's contrivances is inserted in the 5 th volume of the Repertory of Arts, etc.
On the whole, it will be allowed that spurs are weapons equally useless and dangerous, if used by unskilful horsemen, or applied to unruly horses; but, as fashion has greater influence on the actions of men than reason, we advise the novice in the equestrian art, to avail himself of those Spars, the rowels of which may, by means of, a spring, be inflected towards the boots; in order to prevent accidents, when riding or walking with such cumbersome instruments. - For the same reason, we admire the dispassionate unanimity of a certain pacific society, the members of which never spur, but oc-casionally whip their phlegmatic horses, agreeably to the old, but excellent adage, " slow and sure.''