126 DRIVING FOR PLEASURE.
horses, and how glad we were sometimes to change places. To so experienced a coachman as himself I did not intrude my opinion, much less attempt to instruct him ; but had I been the owner of the gallant little cropped horse that went near-wheel, I would not only have put a bearing rein upon him, but a good tight side rein also ; he should have pulled at something else besides my arm. Some people object to side reins upon a leader, in case of his partner bolting across the road and taking him with him ; but this can not happen to a wheeler, as there is the pole and the power of the leaders at the end of it to contend with and to stop him. There is another reason, and a very strong one, in favour of the bearing rein. Many horses are good coach horses for six miles, but far from good ones for twelve miles. Toward the end of a stage they begin to bore upon their bits, and were it not for the resistance of the bearing rein they would get their heads down to their knees; and where is the man who could prevent this being the case with four jaded horses, having nothing to hang upon but his arms?
Lord William Pitt Lennox, in his Coaching, with Anecdotes of the Road, says : " A fashion has lately sprung up among us, or rather, I should say, been adopted (for it is of American origin), and that is, the almost total abolition of the bearing rein. Much has been said, written, and argued pro and con..