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

malo and female flowers upon the same tree. The Janthina, Buccinum, and other shells, indicate the males grow in bunches containing fifty or more flor- presence of a strong colouring matter, and a species ets in each, and are always found on the upper parts of Purpura produced the highly valued Tyrian purof the tree. The females appear after the males ple dye, which formed a very costly article in the have perished, and have their germes curiously wing- catalogue of Roman extravagance; but the sar col. ed with a flat and stiff membrane which invests our being now obtained by the chymical effects of them.

mineral or vegetable matter, at a trifling expense, has of course, superseded its use. In early treatises on medicine, shells ranked as useful agents; they, how

ever, now form no part of the pharmacopeia, comCONCHOLOGY.

mon chalk being equally efficacious. In countries (Continued.)

where the manufacture of glass is either unknown or Of the benefits derived by mankind from shells, too expensive to be generally used, a shell of the or rather their animals, less is probably known al genus Placuna is substituted to the present day, its this moment than could be wished, or might be ex

extremely thin valves permitting the rays of light to pected; they will only be developed by time. We pass partially through them. With these, in China need scarcely mention the oyster, for which our na

and Japan, the windows may be said to be glazed. tive shores have been so long famous ; since, so far As a commercial circulating medium, shells have back as the beginning of the second century, the Ro-been employed on the coast of Africa, where sealed man poet Juvenal, while satirising the epicure Mon- bags of the Cyprea moneta (money cowry) form tallanus, ihus speaks of them :

lies for certain sums ; thus exchanging hands in the

trading operations of uncivilized nations, as an equiv. "He, whether Circe's rock his oysters bore, alent for coin, and redeemable by the party issuing Or Lucrine lake, or distant Richboro's shore. Knew at first sight.”

them with the same good faith that notes are honour

ed by the firm on which they are drawn. As artiThese, with muscles, cockles, sallops, &c., form a cles of luxury and decoration, shells, from the most considerable branch of commerce and wealth to the remote period of history, have afforded personal orenterprising fisherman.

naments, in various ways, to civilised and savage Many other species of shell-fish might also be enu- people. With some they are distinctive marks of merated, affording an agreeable and nutritive food to rank, and in the idolatrous worship of India, some nations compelled by local situation, uncongenial cli- species are consecrated to ignorant superstition, by male, or ignorance of civilized improvement, to seek those “who sit in darkness and who see no light." from ocean's bounteous store, a natural and never-'The Avicula margaritifera, commonly called the failing source of subsistence, frequently, indeed, the mother-of-pearl oyster, is universally well known as principal, if not the only one within their reach. In yielding that beautiful iridescent substance, from ihe days of Roman epicurism we have already enu- which numberless “elegant and useful trinkets are merated snails and oysters, to these may be added fashioned by skilful workmen. It must be observed Echini and Balani, for we are told, that at the famous however, that the beautiful colours, like those of the supper, given by Lentulus when he was made Fla-Opal, which they resemble, are not the effect of any men Martialis, or Priest of Mars, these and other pigment or colouring matter but occasioned by the shell-fish formed a part of the delicacies presented mechanical arrangement of the molecules, or atoms to the guests; and Pennant satirically observes, of matter, constituting the lamellar substance of the they seemed to have been eaten by the holy person- shell, being so distributed as to become capable of ages, priests and vestals, invited on the occasion, as decomposing the rays of light, and reflecting the exa whet for the second course. The. Echinus, how- quisite prismatick hues which all pearly or nacreous ever, is a crustaceous and not a testaceous mollusc, shells exhibit. On this subject the philosophical as we shall explain under its description : we have experiments of Brewster and others are highly intasted both this and the Barnacle, but not possessing teresting. It is the animal of this shell

, or a diseasRoman stomachs, or perhaps from the want of classi ed condition of it

, which produces that modest but cal cooks, we confess they appeared anything but highly coveted jewel, the Oriental pearl, the pride eatable to our vulgar taste. As baits to catch fish, of Europe's fairest daughters, or Africk's sable chilmany species of shells are used; we have, ourselves, dren-the gem that decks a monarch's brow, or captured many a bright mackerel and whiting with graces native innocence. In sacred writing, pearls no other lure iban a small piece of mother-o'-pearl are frequently named as things of inestimable value. suspended from the hook. The amphibious mam- “ No mention shall be made of coral or of pearls, for malia, sea-birds, and even many fishes, derive a large the price of wisdom is above rubies;" and in Matthew portion of their sustenance from shell-fish, which our Saviour said, “The kingdom of heaven is like iends to check, without destroying altogether, the a merchantman seeking goodly pearls, who, when innumerable broods hourly brought into existence. he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold Except as food, shell-fish contribute but little lo sup- all he had and bought it.” Poets of every nation, ply the other wants of mankind. The Pinna Mari- but particularly those of the eastern nations, havo na does, it is true, furnish with its byssus, or beard compared the objects of their dearest affections to as it is commonly called, a silky filament, in suffi- pearls, as the most invaluable things known, its cient abundance to be fabricated into gloves, stock - Persian name Mervarid, or globe of light, being ings, and some few other articles of wearing apparel, constantly used in the hyperbolical language of oribut not in such quantities as to render them articles ental poetry. of general use, or commercial speculation, beyond Several other species of shells, both marine and the value attached to them as museum rarities. The fresh water, also produce pearls—the Pinna marina

[ocr errors]

Vov. V-9

me to

he 177

m.45

[ocr errors]

a

[ocr errors]

a

Tridacna gigas, Unio, Mussel, fc., they are, how

WONDERFUL ESCAPE FROM INDIANS. ever, far inferiour in beauty and value.

JAMES MORGAN, a native of Maryland, married at Having enumerated some of the known benefits an early age, and soon after settled himself near mankind derive from shells, whether as food, orna- Bryant's station, in the wilds of Kentucky. Like ment, or otherwise, it will be proper to point out most pioneers of the west, he had cut down the cane, such as are injurious, or so considered in certain built a cabin, deadened the timber, enclosed a field points of view, that is, so far as their habits tend to with a worin fence, and planted some corn. defeat the industry or ingenuity of man; but here, It was on ihe fifteenth day of August, 1782 ;as in the instance of the common snail, we feel cal- the sun had descended; a pleasant breeze was playled upon to enter a philosophical protest against ing through the surrounding wood ; the tall cane treating them indiscriminately as destructives and bowed under its influence, and the broad

green

leaves enemies. The evil they commit is certainly mani- of the corn waved in the air; Morgan had seated fest, but it is confined to a very limited circlemit himself in the door of his cabin, with his infant on may be every where checked, or prevented by care ; his knec; his young and happy wife had laid aside or art—while the good they perform, being unseen her spinning-wheel, and was busily engaged in preand extended over an immense space, passes un- paring the frugal meal. That afiernoon Morgan had heeded, and, in the present state of our knowledge accidentally found a bundle of letters, of natural history, is not appreciated as it should be; finished reading to his wise before he had taken his let it, however, be remembered, that there is an eter- seat in the door. It was a correspondence in which nal fitness of things which requires that the decrease they had acknowledged an early and ardent attachof various portions of creation should, in some de- ment for each other, and the perusal lest evident gree, keep pace with their otherwise superabundant traces of joy on the countenance of both; the little growth, thus balancing the account of nature's deal- infant, too, seemed to partake of its parents' feelings ings, and regulating the expense of life. Extensive by its cherub smiles, its playful humour, and infantile mischief is doubtless committed by that insidious lit- caresses. While thus agreeably employed, the reile animal the Teredo, which recklessly wends its port of a rifle was heard, another, and another, followway in ten thousand tortuous paths, through the hard- ed in quick succession. Morgan sprang to his feet, est oak, or toughest teak, rendering them like sponge, his wife ran to the door, and they simultaneously and destroying their texture as supports to submarine exclaimed “Indians!” crections, occasioning, in certain localities, danger- The door was immediately barred, and the next ous consequences; piles, jetties, piers, and vessels, moment all their fears were realized, by a bold and long stationed in some climates, are subject to their spirited attack of a small party of Indians. The ravages, from which fatal accidents have resulted. cabin could not be successfully defended, and time It is not in human nature thus to witness the destruc- was precious. Morgan, cool, brave, and prompt, tion of the noblest works of our ingenuity, without soon decided. While he was in the act of concondemning the agents that have effected it; but cealing his wise under the floor, a mother's feelthese are no more than additional illustrations of the ings overcame her—she arose--seized her infant, l'act, that it is for man's ultimate benefit such occur- but was afraid that its cries would betray her place rences should take place—they give a stimulus to of concealment. She hesitated-gazed silently uphis industry-set his wits to work-teach him to on itma momentary struggle between affection and counteract the evil committed against his immediate duty took place. She once more pressed her child interest or convenience and often create a far great to her agitated bosom; again and again kissed it er eventual benefit than he could at first sight dis- with impassioned tenderness. The infant, alarmed

The wise man only becomes so by not de- at the profusion of tears that fell upon its cheek, spising the humblest information he is constantly looked up in its mother's face, threw its little arms examining, inquiring, or reasoning on everything around her neck, and wept aloud. “In the name around him; and some of the greatest efforts of ge- of Heaven, Eliza, release the child, or we shall be nius have been perfected from the indications fur- lost,” said the distracted husband, in a soft implornished from apparently trivial causes, overlooked at ing tone of voice, as he forced the infant from his first from their insignificance. Another of the num- wife ; hastily took up his gun, knife and hatchet ; ber of shells but little loved by mariners, is the Ba- ran up the ladder that led to the garret, and drew lanus or Barnacle, whose númerous broods spread it after him. In a moment the door was burst open, themsel«es in thick congregations, sometimes as it and the savages entered. were incrusting the bottoms of ships, and their sides By this time, Morgan had secured his child in a below the water mark, to such an extent, that their bag, and lashed it to his back; then throwing off progress through the pathless sea becomes seriously some clapboards froin the roof of his cabin, resolute. impeded : the watchful sailor baffled in his best ex- ly leaped to the ground. He was instantly assailed ertions, and the wealthy speculator disappointed in by two Indians. As the first approached, he knockhis nicely calculated hope of gain. To conclude our ed him down with the butt end of his gun. The list of commonly called destructives in conchology, other advanced with uplifted tomahawk; Morgan we shall add the Pholas, and other of the pene- let fall his gun and closed in." The savage made trating genera of shells, whose habitations are form- a blow-missed aim, but severed the cord that bound ed in the calcareous, and even stony matter, wood, the infant on his back, and it fell. The contest over &c., there performing either good or evil according the child now became warm and fierce, and was to the particular circumstances of their situation and carried on with knives only. The robust and aththe purposes of their being, which are, if well con- letick Morgan at length got the ascendency. Both sidered, probably more beneficial than prejudicial to were badly cut, and bled freely, but the stabs of the mankind.

white man were better aimed and deeper, and the

cover.

a

a

savage soon sunk to the earth in death. Morgan of ground, a short distance from him. The scene hastily took up his child and gun, and hurried ott. of action shified, and he remained undiscovered and

The Indians in the house, busily engaged in unscalped, an anxious spectator of the battle. drinking and plundering, were not apprized of the It was now midnight. The savage band aster tacontest in the yard, until the one that had been king all the scalps they could find, left the battleknocked down gave signs of returning life, and call- ground. Morgan was seated at the foot of the oak, ed them to the scene of action. Morgan was dis- its trunk supported its head. The rugged and uncovered, immediately pursued, and a dog put on his even ground that surrounded him was covered with trail. Operated upon by all the feelings of a hus- the slain; the once white and projecting rocks, band and a father, he moved on with the speed bleached with the rain and sun of centuries, were of a hunted stag, and soon outstripped the Indians, crimsoned with the blood that had warmed the heart but the dog kept in close pursuit. Finding it impos- and animated the bosom of the patriot and the solsible to outrun or elude the cunning animal, trained dier. The pale glimmering of the moon, occasionto hunts of this kind, he halted and waited until it ally threw a faint light upon the mangled bodies of came within a few yards of him, fired and brought the dead, then a passing cloud enveloped all in darke him dowo—reio.ded his gun, and again pushed for- ness, and gave additional horror to the feeble cries ward. In a short time he reached the house of his of a few still lingering in the last agonies of protractbrother, who resided between Bryant's station and ed death, rendered doubly appalling the coarse growl Lexington, where he left the child, and the two of the bear, the loud howl of the wolf, the shrill and brothers immediately set out for his dwelling. As varied notes of the wildcat, and the panther, feeding they approached the clearing, a light broke upon his on the dead and dying. Morgan beheld the scene view-his speed quickened, his fears increased, and with heart-rending sensations, and looked forward the most agonizing apprehensions crowded upon with the apathy of despair, to his own end. his mind. He emerged from the cane-brake—be.

A large and ferocious looking bear, covered with held his house in flames, and almost burnt to the blood, now approached him; he threw himself on ground. “My Wife!” he exclaimed, as he pressed the ground-silently commended his soul to Heaven one hand to his forehead, and grasped the fence and in breathless anxiety awaited his fate. The with the other, 10 support bis tottering frame. He satiated animal slowly passed on without noticing gazed for some time on the ruin and desolation be- him. Morgan raised his head—was about offering fore him, advanced a few steps, and sunk exhausted thanks for his unexpected preservation, when the to the earth.

cry of a pack of wolves opened upon him, and again Morning came—the bright luminary of Heaven awakened him to a sense of his danger. He placed arose--and still found him seated near the alınost his hands over his eyes—fell on his face, and in expiring embers. In his right hand he held a small silent agony awaited his fate. He now heard a stick, with which he was tracing the name of “ Eli- rustling in the bushes-steps approached—a cold za,” on the ground-his left was thrown over his chill ran over him.-Imagination-creative, busy favourite dog, that lay by his side, looking first on imagination, was actively employed ; death-the the ruin, and then on his master, with evident signs most horrible death, awaited him—his limbs would, of grief. Morgan arose. The two brothers now in all probability, be torn from his body, and he be made a search, and found some bones almost burned devoured alive. He felt a touch-the vital spark to ashes, which they carefully gathered, and silently was almost extinguished—another touch, more vioconsigned to their mother earth, beneath the wide- lent than the first, and he was turned over-the spread branches of a venerable oak, consecrated by cold sweat ran down in torrents—his hands were vithe purest and holiest recollections.

olently forced from his face—he moon passed from Several days after this, Morgan was engaged in a under a cloud-a faint ray beamed upon him-his desperate batile at the lower Blue Licks. The In- eyes involuntarily opened and he beheld his wife, dians came off victors, and the surviving whites re- who, in scarce audible voice, exclamed " My hustreated across the Licking, but were pursued by the band my husband !" and fell upon his bosom. enemy for a distance of six-and-thirty iniles.

Morgan now learned from his wife, that after the James Morgan was among the last that crossed Indians had entered the house, they found some the river, and was in the rear until the hill was de- spirits and drank freely ; an altercation soon took scended. As soon as he beheld the Indians reap- place—one of them received a mortal stab and fell; pear on the ridge, he felt anew his wrongs, and re- his blood ran through the floor on her. Believing it collected the lovely object of his early affections. to be the blood of her husband, she shrieked aloud, He urged on his horse and pressed to the front. and betrayed her place of concealment. She was While in the act of leaping from his saddle, he re- immediately taken and bound. The party, after ceived a rifle ball in his thigh, and fell; an Indian setting fire to the house, proceeded to Bryani's stasprang upon him, seized him by the hair, and applied tion. On the day of the rtle of the Blue Lick, the scalping.knife. At this moment Morgan cast his a horse, with saddle and bridle, rushed by her, which eyes upward and recognized the handkerchief that she knew to be her husband's. During the action, bound the head of the savage, and which he knew the prisoners were lest uuguarded--made their esto be his wife's. This added renewed strength to cape, and lay concealed beneath some bushes under his body, and increased activity to his fury.

He the the bank of the river. After the Indians had quickly threw his left arm around the Indian, and returned from the pursuit, and left the battle-ground, with a death-like grasp, hugged him to his bosom, she, with some other persons that had escaped with plunged his knife into his side, and he expired in her, determined to make a search for their friends, his arms. Releasing himself from the savage, Mor- and if on the field, and living, to save them if possi. gan crawled under a small oak, on an elevated piece | ble from the beasts of prey. After searching for

a

some time, and almost despairing of success, she day in a tavern, and without the means of paying for fortunately discovered him.

his bill, he called to him a blind musician, paintThe party of Colonel Logan found Morgan and ed him on the spot, and sold his picture for three his wife, and restored them 10 their friends, their ducats to a traveller who came up at the time. This INFANT, and their home.

picture displayed so much talent, that it was long regarded by connoisseurs as his chef d'æuvre.

In his new career, 'Teniers soon found fame and

fortune. Leopold made him gentleman of his bedARTS AND ARTISTS.

chamber: queen Christina gave him her miniature

to which was attached a gold chain ; and the king TENIERS, THE YOUNGER.

of Spain, the prince of Orange and other distinguishThe Flemish school has two painters of this name, ed individuals granted him their protection. Louis both of them of remarkable talent, both of them sir- XIV., however, did not appreciate the merit of Tenamed David, and distinguished by the terms elder, niers. One day when one of Teniers' Flemish picand younger. The latter was born at Antwerp, in tures were placed in the cabinet of this monarch, he 1610, and naturally received his first instruction in exclaimed « remove those daubs." painting in his father's studio. After this, by some Independent of his talents, the mildness of Tehe is said to have taken lessons of Rubens ; others niers' manners, bis regularity of conduct, and his maintain that he derived all his information from his conversational powers attracted many to him. Findfather alone. Be this as it may, he soon discovered ing that his numerous visitors interfered with his great talent for imitation, and he presented admirable avocations, he left his native city and went to Pesih sketches after Bassano, Paul Veronese, 'Tintoretto, between Malines and Antwerp, in order to devote and Rubens, which were considered by many con- himself more closely to his studies. This country noisseurs as coming from the hands of those masters. retreat soon became, to his great regret, the rendezHappily, however, Teniers soon found that he must i vous of all the nobility in the country. Teniers, do something more than imitate. He had already however, was enabled to mix with the peasantry, to given one remarkable proof that he was worthy of observe their manners, their dances, gaines, and conhaving nature for his model ; for finding himself one tests, which he transferred with surprising truth to

66

[graphic][ocr errors][merged small]
[ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small]

the canvass, always preserving, however, the digni- The art of making porcelain is one of thost in ty of rank and talent.

which Europe has been excelled by oriental nations. The drawing of Teniers is extremely correct. The first porcelain that was seen in Europe was Possessed of great rapidity of execution, he seldom brought from Japan and China. The whiteness, devoted more than a day to his finest works, and he transparency, fineness, neatness, elegance, and even often said laughingly, that it would require a gallery the magnificence of this pottery, which soon became two leagues long to contain his works.

the ornament of sumptuous tables, did not fail to exTeniers died at Brussels at the age of eighty-four cite the admiration and industry of Europeans; and years. He had a brother named Abraham, who was their attempts have succeeded so well that ir. differalso a pupil of the elder Teniers, but he did not ex- ent parts of Europe, earthenwares have been made cel

so like the oriental that they have acquired the name of -porceluin. The first European porcelains were made in Saxony and in France, and afterwards in

England, Germany, and Italy; but, as all these were USEFUL ARTS.

different from the Japanesc, so each of them had its peculiar character.

The finest and best porcelain of China is made in PORCELAIN.

a village called King-le-tching, in the province of Porcelain is a peculiar species of earthenware, Kiang-si

. This celebrated village is a league and a chiefly manufactured in China, and thence called hall in length, and it has been stated that it contains China-ware. All earthenwares which are white and a million of inhabitants. The emperor Kang-hi was semi-transparent are generally called porcelains; but desirous of having some made under his own inspecamong these, such great differences may be observed tion at Pekin. For this purpose he collected workthat, notwithstanding the similarity of their external men, together with tools and all materials necessary; appearance, they cannot be considered as matters of furnaces were also erected, but the attempt miscarthe same kind. These differences are so evident, ried. The village of King-te-tching still continues that even persons who are not connoisseurs in this the most celebrated place in the empire for becatful respect prefer the porcelain of some countries to that porcelain, which is transported to all parts of the of others.

world, and even to Japan.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[merged small][merged small][ocr errors]
[graphic][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][subsumed][merged small][merged small]
« PreviousContinue »