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CHATSWORTH HOUSE. DERBYSHIRE is one of the most remarkable counties in England. This county is distinguished by the variety and beauty of its scenery. It abounds with hills and dales. Of the hills, the most noted is that of the High Peak. This county' contains several large mansions and parks, belonging to persons of great wealth. The most princely and magnificent of these is Chatsworth, the domain of his grace thc Dake of Devonshire.
Chatsworth is twenty-six miles from Derby, nine miles from Chesterfield, and is near to Rowsley, and Bakewell, in the hundred of the High Peak. After the Norman Couquest, the manor of Chatsworth was given to William de Peveril. Afterwards, Chatsworth was for a long period the property of a family of the name of Leche, or Leech: it was then sold to a person of the name of Ayard, of whose descendauts it was purchased by Sir William Cavendish, and has ever since been the property of his family.
The mansion stands in a park nearly eleven miles in circumference. The house is situate on a gently rising ground, having at a short distance a high hill, which is
finely covered with trees. In the front of the house, the river Derwent flows through a beautiful valley. Mr. Rhodes describes the beauties of Chatsworth in the following terms : “ Immediately before us lay the river, across whose stream a stone butment, or weir, has been erected, which damming up the water expands it into breadth; it is thence precipitated over this interruption to its progress, and foams over a magnificent cascade. Ona gently ascending ground, about half a mile higher up the river, stands Chatsworth House, finely embosomed in
Majestic woods, of every vigorous green,
Stage above stage, high waving o'er the hills. * A little on the left is the bridge, backed with broad and ample foliage; the foreground adorned with cattle, reposing in groups on the brink of the river, or cooling themselves in the stream; and the middle and remote distances-ornamented with a palace, towers, and temples -disclose a scene as rich and lovely as the fancy of Claude Lorraine ever portrayed when under the influence of his happiest inspirations.'
Chats worth House was formerly much less magnificent than it now is. The first Duke of Devonshire, towards the close of the seventeenth century, rebuilt the mansion, and it has subsequently been greatly enlarged and beautified. Very considerable additions and improvements were made a few years since, under the superintendence of Sir Jeffrey Wyatville.
The great Entrance Hall is 60 feet long, by 27 feet wide, and its walls are painted with illustrations of the history and death of Julius Cæsar. The staircase is 34 feet by 24 feet, has a double flight of steps, and is elegantly ornamented. The gallery leading to the chapel contains about one thousand original drawings and sketches by the most eminent foreign artists. The chapel is wainscotted with cedar, is ornamented with carved work, and the altarpiece is of Derbyshire marble. The great North Staircase is made of oak, ornamented with rich gilding, and on its walls are whole length portraits of the Emperor and Empress of Russia, which cost a thousand guineas each.
The Library is about 88 feet long, 22 feet wide, and 17 feet high. It contains a large and valuable collection of books, manuscripts, and chemical apparatus. The Sculpture Gallery is 103 feet long, 30 feet wide, and 22 feet high, and is lined with Derbyshire marbles. It contains some valuable sculptures; among which are two beautiful lions carved out of blocks of marble, 9 feet long, and 4 feet high. There are also numerous curious fossils and minerals, stalactites from the caves of Derbyshire, and many other natural curiosities.
The Orangery-or building in which orange-trees grow -is 170 feet long, and has plate-glass windows. The fruit and vegetable gardens occupy twelve acres. The fowergarden surrounds the mansion. The Pleasure-grounds extend over more than cight acres, and are ornamented with lawns, shrubberies, fountains, and cascades. There is a beautiful waterfall, ornamented with a temple. Water flows from the roof of the temple, and from the mouths of lions' heads, dolphins, sea-nymphs, and other figures: the water, after falling into a basin in front of the temples, rushes down over twenty-four steps, and then disappcars under ground. Among other artificial water-works is a copper tree, representing a decayed weeping willow, the branches of which are hollow, and from which a shower descends when the water is turned on. The principal fountain throws up a stream of water nearly 100 feet high.
The Conservatory is a wonderful structure. It is very large and magnificent, and contains an extensive and highly valuable collection of plants, brought from almost all parts of the world. The gardens, grounds, and horticultural buildings, have been laid out with great skill by Mr. Paxton, the gentleman who designed the wonderful palace of glass, erected in Hyde Park, London, for the Great Exhibition.
Mary Queen of Scots resided as a prisoner in Chatsworth House, during part of the time which she was kept in captivity by Queen Elizabeth. During the time of the
wars between Charles I. and the Parliament, several battles were fought at Chatsworth, and the house was sometimes in the possession of the royalists, and at other times was garrisoned by the troops belonging to the parliament. Marshall Tallard, who was taken prisoner by the duke of Marlborough, at Blenheim, resided during a part of his captivity at Chatsworth House.
All persons visiting Chatsworth are permitted to see the house, and to walk over the grounds. Many persons go from all parts of the country to see this splendid mansion, its beautiful conservatory, gardens, and park. Perhaps our readers will be disposed to conclude, that the owner of so magnificent a place must be very happy. We hope that he is happy, but if so, it cannot be on account of the possession of this noble mansion and princely domain; it must be from the possession of true religion. No earthly grandeur or riches can afford real happiness. Earthly things cannot satisfy the desires of the soul. The enjoyment of God's favour is happiness to the soul. In a very short time life comes to an end; and those who are wise, will look upon earthly things as being lent to them only for a short season ; and will endeavour to lay up for themselves treasures in heaven, where there are scenes much more lovely than any earthly beauty or riches can produce. If our readers give their hearts to God, love and serve him, they will, ere long, dwell in the most glorious mansion of their Father's house in heaven ; and be cternally happy in the presence of God.
A MOTHER'S DREAM OF HEAVEN. THREE beautiful children made glad the home of a happy mother. Her love for them was intense, and her care never failing. They were in her thoughts all the day long and in her dreams by night. The youngest of these children was a boy. He had large deep blue eyes, and his long lashes, when he slept, lay beautifully adorning his lovely cheeks. Something in his face ever awakened in the minds of those who gazed upon him, thoughts of heaven, and many said of him that he was but a stranger here, and would soon return to his own country. And such thoughts came, sometimes, to the happy mother, and then her heart trembled and grew faint.
At last what had been feared, befell the child. The Angel of Death came and removed him from his carthly abode to his heavenly dwelling-place, and the stricken mother bowed her head, and would not listen to the voice of consolation.
"God is good," were the words of one who sought to comfort her, " and He afflicts us in lovingkindness.”
“I will not believe,” replied the weeping mother, “it was good to take from me my precious boy.".
"He is with the angel-think of that. The great problem of his life is solved, and it is well with him. There is neither doubt, nor fear, nor anxiety on his account, for he is safe in the everlasting habitation of our Father in heaven."
The mother listened, and the consoler went on.
"No more grief, no more sorrow, no more pain! Think of that. Let not your thoughts droop with feeble wings about the dark and gloomy grave. He is not there. But let them rise on swift and sunny pinions to the beautiful dwelling-place of the angels. His decaying body alone fills the grave, but his pure spirit, that gave life and beauty to its earthly tenement, has gone to his better home. Would you have him back again ? Had you the power, with a word, to call him to the earth, would you speak that word, now that he has escaped the long trial and suffering that comes to all who have made the journey of life? No, I am sure you would not."
The tears of the mother ceased to flow, and she bent near to him who spoke and listened more intently. He went on.
"All children who die, are raised up in heaven and received by angels, who love them with the utmost tenderness. Your dear boy, though he has been taken from an earthly mother, has already found a heavenly one. And you have not really lost him, for he is present in your