Tarzan the Terrible

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 72

been his appreciation of the beauties of nature. The apes
cared more for a grubworm in a rotten log than for all the majestic
grandeur of the forest giants waving above them. The only beauties that
Numa acknowledged were those of his own person as he paraded them
before the admiring eyes of his mate, but in all the manifestations of
the creative power of nature of which Tarzan was cognizant he
appreciated the beauties.

As Tarzan neared the city his interest became centered upon the
architecture of the outlying buildings which were hewn from the
chalklike limestone of what had once been a group of low hills, similar
to the many grass-covered hillocks that dotted the valley in every
direction. Ta-den's explanation of the Ho-don methods of house
construction accounted for the ofttimes remarkable shapes and
proportions of the buildings which, during the ages that must have been
required for their construction, had been hewn from the limestone
hills, the exteriors chiseled to such architectural forms as appealed
to the eyes of the builders while at the same time following roughly
the original outlines of the hills in an evident desire to economize
both labor and space. The excavation of the apartments within had been
similarly governed by necessity.

As he came nearer Tarzan saw that the waste material from these
building operations had been utilized in the construction of outer
walls about each building or group of buildings resulting from a single
hillock, and later he was to learn that it had also been used for the
filling of inequalities between the hills and the forming of paved
streets throughout the city, the result, possibly, more of the adoption
of an easy method of disposing of the quantities of broken limestone
than by any real necessity for pavements.

There were people moving about within the city and upon the narrow
ledges and terraces that broke the lines of the buildings and which
seemed to be a peculiarity of Ho-don architecture, a concession, no
doubt, to some inherent instinct that might be traced back to their
early cliff-dwelling progenitors.

Tarzan was not surprised that at a short distance he aroused no
suspicion or curiosity in the minds of those who saw him, since, until
closer scrutiny was possible, there was little to distinguish him from
a native either in his general conformation or his color. He had, of
course, formulated a plan of action and, having decided, he did not
hesitate in the carrying out his plan.

With the same assurance that you might venture upon the main street of
a neighboring city Tarzan strode into the Ho-don city

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