Page images
PDF
EPUB
[merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]

ply the place of the parent tree. Thus turned out one of those most lovely is Britain, in some measure, indebted to ones which no season but the autumn the industry and bad memory of a produces; cloudless, calm, serene, and squirrel for her pride, her glory, and worthy of the south of France itself. her very existence ! +

• About nine an appearance very Horse-beans are set by jays and pies, unusual began to demand our attention, who hide them among the grass and a shower of cobwebs falling from very moss, and afterwards, most probably, elevated regions, and continuing, without forget where they had stowed them. any interruption, till the close of the Horse-beans and peas sprang up in Mr. day. These webs were not single White's field walks in the autumn, and filmy threads, floating in the air in all he attributes the sowing of them to directions, but perfect flakes or rags; birds. Bees, observes the same natural- some near an inch broad, and five or ist, are much the best setters of cucum- six long, which fell with a degree of bers. If they do not happen to take velocity that showed they were conkindly to the frames, the best way is to siderably heavier than the atmosphere. tempt them by a little honey put on the “On every side, as the observer male and female bloom.

turned his eyes, might he behold a conSome seeds lie dormant for a long tinual succession of fresh flakes falling time, and do not vegetale till the sun into his sight, and twinkling like stars and air are admitted. When old beech as they turned their sides towards the trees are cleared away (says Mr.Wbite), sun. How far this wonderful shower the naked ground, in a year or two, be- extended would be difficult to say ; comes covered with strawberry plants, but we know that it reached Bradley, the seeds of which must have been in Selborne, and Alresford, three places the ground for an age at least.

which lie in a sort of a triangle, the The gleamy gossamer now spreads

shortest of whose sides is about eight Its filmy web-work o'er the tangled mead. miles in extent.

The ground is covered about this 'At the second of those places there time, with spiders' webs, crossing the was a gentleman (for whose veracity path from shrub to shrub, and foating and intelligent turn we have the greatin the air. This gossamer appearance est veneration) who observed it the is thus noticed by Mr. White:- On moment he got abroad; but concluded September 21, 1741. being then on a thal, as soon as he came upon the bill visit, and intent on field-diversions. I above his house, where he took bis rose before daybreak: when I came morning rides, he should be higher into the enclosures. I found the stubbles than this meteor, which he imagined and clover-grounds matted all over with might have been blown, like thistlea thick coat of cobweb, in the mashes down, from the common above : but, of which a copious and heavy der to his great astonishment, when he rode hung so plentifully, that the whole face to the most elevated part of the down, of the country seemed, as it were. cov- three hundred feet above his fields, he ered with two or three setting-nets to

Pets found the webs, in appearance, still as drawo one over another. When the much above him as before ; still desdogs attempted to hunt their eyes were cending into sight in a constant successo blinded and hoodwinked that they sion, and twinkling in the sun, so as to could not proceed. but were obliged to draw the attention of the most incurilies down and scrape the incumbrances ous, from their faces with their fore-feet;

per: "Neither before oor after was any so that, finding my sport interrupted. I such fall observed ; but on this day retorned home, musing in my mind on the flakes hung in the trees and bedges so the oddness of the occurrence.

thick, that a diligent person sent out • As the morning advanced the gun might have gathered baskets full. became bright and warm, and the day “The remark that I shall make on + Philosophy of Nature, vol. I, pp. 30, 31,

these cobweb-like appearances, called L ATRENEOM. Vol. 4.

gossumer, is that, strange and supersti- fleece ; but when a ruder breath had tious as the notions about them were forced open its virgin modesty, and formerly, nobody in these days doubts dismantled its too youthful und unripe but that they are the real production of retirements, it began to put on darkness, small spiders, which swarm in the fields and to decline to softness and the sympin fine weather in autumn, and have a toms of a sickly age; itbowed the head, power of shooting out webs from their and broke its stalk; and, at night, tails, so as to renderthemselves buoyant, having lost some of its leares, and all and lighter than air. But why these its beauty, it fell into the portion of apterous insects should that day take weeds and outworn faces.'-- Taylor.* such a wonderful aërial excursion, and The principal harvest of apples is why their webs should at once become about the beginning of this month. Io go gross and material as to be consid- the management of the fruit, and subseerably more weighty than air, and to quent manufacture of cider, consideradescend with precipitation, is a matter ble variations occur, according as the beyond my skill. If I might be allow. makers are more or less skilful. Ined 10 bazard a supposition, I should dependently ofthe qualities of the apple, imagine that those filmy threads, when the superior flavour and richness of first shot, might be entangled in the the liquor greatly depend on the judirising dew, and so drawn up, spiders cious nature of the operations. The and all, by a brisk evaporation into the juice of the pulp alone is inadequate to regions where clouds are formed; and make a good and generous cider; the if the spiders have a power of coiling qualities of the kernel are wanting to and thickening their webs in the air, add flavour, and those of the rind to as Dr. Lister says they have (see his give colour; and hence it is necessary Letters to Mr. Ray,) then, when they that the juice of both these should be were become beavier than the air, they perfectly expressed. The apples should must fall.

also be properly separated when · Every day in fine weather, in gathered. autumo chieíly, do I see those spiders. The squash pear, so called from the shooting out their webs and mounting tenderness of its pulp, has probably furaloft: they will go off from your finger nished England with more Champaigne if you will take them into your hand. than was ever imported into it. Cider, Last summer one alighted co my book perry, and very excellent gooseberry as I was reading in the parlour; and, wine, resemble somewhat in flavour the running to the top of the page, and sparkling beverage of our continental shootilig out a web, took its departure neighbours. Though the luscious from thence. But what I most wonder- grape' be denied to our variable climate, ed at was, that it went off with consid. yet, besides the apple and the pear, erable velocity in a place where no air was stirring; and I am sure that I did

On our account bas God not assist it with my breath. So that Indulgent to ali moons, some succulent plant

Allotted, that poor helpless man might slake these little crawlers seem to have, while His present thirst, and matter find for toil. mounting, some locomotive power Now will the corinths, now the rasps, supply without the use of wings, and to move

Delicious draughts: the quinces now, or plume,

Or cherries, or the fair Thisbcian fruit, in the air faster than the air itself.'

Are pressed to wines: the Britons squeeze the works The hedges are now ornamented with Of sed’lous bees, and, mixing odorous herbs, the wreaths and festoons of the scarlet Prepare balsamic cups, to wheezing lungs berries of the black briony: and now Medicinal, and short-breathed anlient sires.

But if thou’rt indefatigably bent and then, that last ‘pale promise of the To toil, and omnifarious drinks wouldst brew, waning year,' the wild rose, meets the Besides the Orchard every tree and busha eye-boro just to bloom and die. "But Affords assistance ; ev'n afflictive birch, so I have seen a Rose newly springing from the clefls of its hood, and at first . The beautiful and well known lines of Cowper,

The rose had been washed, just washed in a shower,

are written in a kindred spirit and are almost equally leve of heaven as a lamb's Bishop Taylor.

touching with the above quotation from the eloquent

POL. 4.]

VarietiesJohn Adams of Pitcairn's Island.

83

Cursed by uplettered idle youth, distils

prevent the possibility of the birds seeA limpid current from her wounded bark

ing the decoy-man; and as these birds Profuse of nursing sap. When solar beams Parch thirsty human veins, the damasked meads, feed during ihe night, all is ready preUnforced, display ten thousand painted flow'rs pared for this sport in the evening. Useful in potables. Thy littie sons

The fowler, placed on the leeward Permit to range the pastures; gladly they

side, sometimes with the help of his Will mow the cowslip posies faintly sweet, From whence thou artificial wines shalt drain

well-trained dog, but always by that of Oricy taste, that in mid fervours best

his better trained decoy-ducks, begins Slake craving thirst, and mitigate the day, the business of destruction. The lat

PAILIPS. ter, directed by his well-known whistle, The taking of wild fowl commences, or excited forward by the floating hempby Act of Parliament, on the 1st of seed, which he strews occasionally upOctober, and the decoy-business is at on the water, entice all the wild-ducks the greatest height about the end of the after them under the netting ; and as month. Great oumbers of wild ducks soon as this is observed, the man, or his and other water-fowl are annually caught dog, as the fitness of opportunity may in the extensive inarsh lands of Lincola- direct, is from the rear exposed to the shire in this way. The decoys now view of the birds, by which they are ia use are formed by cutting pipes, or so alarmed, that they dare not offer to tapering ditches, widened and deepened return, and are prevented by the nets as they approach the water, in various from escaping upwards. They, theresemicircular directions, through the fore, press forward, in the utmost conswampy ground into very large pools, fusion, to the end of the pipe, into the which are sheltered by surrounding funnel, or purse nets there prepared to trees or bushes, and situated commonly receive them, while their treacherous in the midst of the solitary marsh. At guides remain behind in conscious sec the parrow points of these ditches, far- curity. Particular spots, or decoys, ia tbest from the pool, by which they are the fen countries, are let to the fowlers filled with water, the fowlers place their at a rent of froin five to thirty pounds funnel nets : from these, the ditch is per annum; and Pennant instances a covered by a continual arch of netting, season, in which 31,200 ducks, inclusupporied by hoops, to the desired disc ding teals and wigeons, were sold in taoce; and all along both sides, skreens London only, from ten of these decoys, formed of reeds are set up, so as to near Wainfleet in Lincolnshire,

VARIETIES.

PITCAIRN'S ISLAND AND CAPT. BLIGH, narrative, he was much affected; said, From the Gentleman's Magazine, July 1818. he accompanied him on board the MR. URBAX,

Bounty at Deptford, but he entered in A S your readers must have felt deep- the name of Smith ; and this accounts

Jy interested in the short account for the name of Adams not being found rendered of Pitcairn's Island, by Lieue in the Bounty's list of her crew ; that tenant Shillibeer,* I presume the few he has a sister living, older than either, lioes in addition to this may not be un. who is married to a decent Tradesman acceptable.

at Derby : that he himself has a large Having been informed that Joha family. I said, “ I sent for you to say, Adams, the last survivor of the Boun- if you will write to your brother in a ty's crew on the Island, had a brother, few days, I think I shall have the I desired to see him : he called on me, means of transmitting it to him ; and is a waterman at Union Stairs, wears as you have a large family, will you let the fire coat of the London Assurance, your eldest son go out ?” He thanked and is of course a steady character. me for the offer of sending the letter, Os reading to him the Lieutenant's and wilingly would have sent his son, • See Atheneum, vol. 2, p.419.

but an objection would lie with somebody else. Now we all know who ter ; we see it the ground-work of evthis somebody else is, and the influence ery good to man. Dolly has on Johnny Bull.

The letter is gone--and with it sev. From the New Monthly Magazine, August 1818. eral others; but when I reflect on the surprizing escape of Captain Bligh and

THE FATE OF Genius, bis Barge's crew, and of the events that By what a strange fatality a great have followed, I am not surprized that proportion of the writers of antiquity the whole is a series of interesting cir- were prematurely cut off from exislcumstances.

ence. --Menander was drowned in the Adams's brother proceeded to say, harbour of Piræus, at a time of life when A“ We are natives of Hackney, and he had done enough for immortality, but were left orphans, being brought up while the powers of his mind were yet in the poor house." Here it was, then, unimpaired by age, and his genius suflithat they were taught the first princi- ciently ardent to do still more. Euripides ples of our holy religion ; here they and Fleraclitus were torn to pieces by learned, what it appears Adams in due dogs. Theocritus ended his career by time recollected, the Catechism be had the halter. Empedocles was lost in the been taught to repeat, that excellent crater of Mount Etna. Hesiod was Catechism which every child should be murdered by his secret enemies : Architaught also to say :-and although we lochus and Ibyeus by banditti. Sappbo have been in the present day wondrous threw herself from a precipice, Æschywise in giving surprisingly quick in. lus perished by the fall of a tortoise. struction to children, yet, I must con- Anacreon (as was to be expected) owed fess, I cannot but feel partial to those his death to the fruit of the vide. Craold-fashioned habits, where the ground. tinus and Terence experienced the same work must have been carefully, atten- fate with Menander ; Seneca and Lutively, and progressively laid.

can, were condemned to death by a tyAnother observation I beg to sub- rant, cut their veins, and died repeating mit to your readers, that Adams adopt., their own verses ; and Petronius Ared and inculcated from that sublime and biter met a similar catastrophe. Luadmirable introduction to our service, cretius, it is said, wrote under the deone of the sentences, and that one the lirium of a philter administered by his most affecting and impressive. No mistress, and destroyed himself froin its doubt, in his childhood, he was obliged effects. Poison, though swallowed unto attend with the other children of the der very different circumstances, cut poor, in this place at church : here then short the days both of Socrates and we may date the impression that was Demosthenes ; and Cicero fell under made Jand which, wben he came again the proscription of the Triumvirate. to reflect seriously, occurred with full: It is truly wonderful that so many men, force on his mind. And permit me to the professed votaries of peace and reask those who are in the habit of attend tirement, should have met with fates so ing public worship in due time, what widely different from that to which the is the impression on our minds, after common casiialties of life should seemn sitting a few minutes in our Parish to expose them. Church in solemn silence, when the minister begins, and every soul rises. THETHREE EMBLEMS OF UNCERTAINTY. and hears him say: “ I will arise, and In some dull and ill-written letters go to my Father!” When the mind re- by one Wickford, a siogular passage flects on who said it, the occasion, and occurs. Speaking of English politics, our dutiful repetition of it; cold in- and the approach of the Princess from deed must be the heart of him, that England to Holland to espouse William does not glow with a “ celestial fire." the Stadtholder, he observes : “but this We see the effect in a poor ignorant depends on three things most uncertain. child ; we see the benefits arising from viz. the wind, a woman's mind, and a a recollection of those feelings years af- British Parliament !"

vol. 4.]

Varieties.

85

THE TEN COMMANDNENTS. honours would only have drawn down The Jewish doctors report that the vengeance ; but the spirit of the peoTen Commandments were written in ple was not to be totally quenched, such a manner that not one single letter and the actions of this gallant officer more could have had place on the tab. were recorded in all the more secret and lets. It would be well if the laws of safer forms of memorial A pillar in morality were so amply engraved on an open field near Stralsund, bore an' the human beart as to preclude the inscription in German, of which the possibility of immoral thoughts finding following is a translation. The popuan entrance there.

lar attention was too strongly attracted EMULATION.

to it, and it was shortly removed. Aristotle has happily defined emula

INSCRIPTION. tion to be a certain painful solicitude Who rests this nameless mound beneath, occasioned by there being presented to

Thus rudely pilld upon the heath?

Naked to winds' and waters' sweep, our police, and placed within our reach,

Does here some gloomy outcast sleep? in the possession of those who are by Yet many a footstep, freshly round, natūre our fellows, things at once good Marks it as lov'd, as holiest ground ! and honourable ; not because they be. Stranger ! this mound is all the grave

Of one who liv'd-as live the brave; long to them, but because they do not

Nor ever heart's devoted tide also belong to us. In mod in practi

More nobly pour'd than when he did : cal systems of education, emulation is Stranger ! no stone might dare to tell generally made the main spring, as if His name, who on this red spot fell ! there were not enough of the leaven of These steps are steps of German men, disquietude in our natures without in

Who, when the Tyrant's in his den,

Come crowding round, with midnight tread, oculating it with this dilutement. Em

To vow their vengeance o'er the dead ;ulation, by creating contention and en Dead ? no ! that spirit's lighting still vy, is a stimulant to the heart rather Soldier ! thou seest the grave of Schill! than the talents ; and the effect of such

BOILEAU AND RACINE a stirnulant is commonly to cramp and Praise no person's verses but their dwarf the buman mind : even allowing own. They assume the character of it all the success which has injudicious- universal critics, and not a ballad esly been ascribed to it, it will but pur- capes their censure. Their powers of chase a little knowledge at the expense versification are good, but their erudiof virtue!

tion very superficial. CHARACTERISTIC TRAITS.

Boileau fancied he possessed a secret Every Dation has its traits : the worth knowing in the coinposition of Spaniard sleeps on every affair of im- poetry; he always made the second portance ; the Italians fiddle upon eve- line of his couplet before the first, in ry thing ; the Germans smoke upon order, as he said, to infuse greater enerevery thiog; the French promise every gy and compression by confining the tring and do nothing: the British isl- sense to narrow limits. It is, perhaps, anders eat upon every thing; and the the adoption of this plan which has windy subjects of American colocracy given such epigrammatic turns to many talk upon every thing!

passages in his writings. . MAJOR SCHILL.

NATURAL HISTORY-WHALES, The exploits of the combined armies Extract of a letter from Stornaway, dated in the campaign of 1814 and 15, have Jar Su od 15 hore June 22,1818:---"I had a very fine sight here

yesterday afternoon. No fewer than 209 naturally thrown into the shade the whales, called the bottle-nose, came into this services to which Germany owed her harbour, when a desperate battle epsued befame in former wars, and might have,

tween them and the inhabitants of the place,

armed with axes, swords, and knives, so that under a wiser conduct, owed her inde- I suppose very few of those extraordinary pandora pendence; but the memory of Schill . but hom o f chill visitors escaped. I measured some of them

this morning, above 20 feet Jong by 15 feet in is still bonoured as that of the most dis- circumference.”---An immeose 'schoal of tinguished and gallant partizan that all Finners, very large wbales, have also appearthose wars produced. As he died un- ed in these northern seas. Are these pheno

mena connected with the disruption of the der the reign of Buonaparte, all public Greenland ices ---Gent. Mag.

« PreviousContinue »