Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

In Australia there is a steadily growing i feeling that the interests the colonists

NATURE'S VOICES. in general, meet with neglect from the imperial government, and that such colonies as are unable or reluctant to force By the aid of a pocket-telescope, and attention to their claims, by the means any of the popular works on British adopted in the Canadas, Jamaica, and Ornithology, a great deal may be learn. Guiana, are disregarded, and the trium. ed respecting the habits and characphant success of passive resistance, so called, teristics of birds. Some are so shy recently at the Cape of Good Hope, seems that it is difficult to get sufficiently to warrant the assumption, that those who are strong enough to be feared, or fearless assisted eye their forms and plumage.

near to them, to examine with the unonough to run all risks, may hope to get But the most modest and reserved can prompt redress of grievances.

In England a large revenue is obtained be minutely inspected,-even on the from the sale of quack medicines and highest tree-top — by the aid of the intoxicating liquors. In our colonies telescope. The species and variety the same demoralizing practice prevails. having been ascertained, the habits of In Western Australia the total revenue the bird can be investigated and its raised by our government is £8,944, and

song noticed. The latter is a pleasant of this sum £4,573 is from intoxicating recreation for those whose businessliquors, a source which saps the foundation of public and private virtue, and is habits or natural tastes induce them to alike demoralizing to those who'impose take an occasional walk into the country. and those who pay the tax. However, you They will soon become familiar with may escape this impost without subterfuge, the spring-time sounds, gushing up, and in a manly, honourable way, viz., by even before the dawn of day, from refraining from drinking the manufactured every glen, copse, hedgerow, and orchdrugs and draughts. In the colonies there ard. How pleasant will it be to them is little or no need of medicine ; you may to listen to this morning hymn, taught in reality " throw physic to the dogs.", only by God. young doctor who emigrated to New Zea- they be with this indescribable ming

How delighted must land, found the colony healthy,” he says, that nothing but starva- ling of nature's melodies, given out in tion stared him in the face had he not the morning, or under the clear sunturned his attention to farming. The uni- shine, and amidst the green leaves and versal testimony of experienced emigrants sweet flowers of the world, while rejoicproves that those who indulge in intoxicat- ing in its vernal prime. Hearken to ing drinks are the last to get work, and all that combine in that joyous chorus. have the brand of disgrace affixed to them There is the clear ringing ecstatic more indelibly than when pursuing similar strains of the wren—the insignificant hpractices at home. therefore, before you go on board the ship looking-little brown wren-the canary which wafts you over the brine, you will of England; the rich and nicely moduhave come to the resolution, to drop the lated whistle of the blackbird; the practice, and be assured such a determin- plaintive strain of the robin-redbreast ation will be one of the best letters of re- -most musical, most melancholy; the commendation you can carry with you. rapturous outpouring of the thrush;

Having pointed out some of the impedi- ; and the quick, off-hand, dashing notes, ments which have hampered emigration, of the chaffinch. The screams of the and operated against the prosperity of our jay as he hurries by, with his bright Colonies, I have to congratulate you and all intending emigrants on the brighter plumage flashing in the sunlight, or the prospect which is opening before you and chattering of a pair of loving magpies all of us. Experience and observation in their amorous career, may produce haveaccumulated facts and formed opinions a momentary discord, which will make which are now being pressed successfully the sweetness of the music more apon the attention of those in authority, and preciable, when unaided by their vigoremigrants henceforth will have a less

ous exertions. rugged path open before them than their

Who would not love a ramble by the predecessors had to tread.

green fields to be in the midst of naYours truly,

ture's voices ? To be with them and to FELIX CURTIS. feel the clear, soft, balmy, health-give

[blocks in formation]

ing air, pass by on its hygeian mission ? To see the rich country smiling with a Aphorisms of the Ancients. promise of the golden grain that yet lies folded in the silken bosom of each slender plant? To listen to the spark should depart from life elegantly, as from

It is necessary that a well educated man ling river while it murmurs melodious

a banquet.—Demophilus. ly along? To look upon, admire and Restive horses are led by the bridle, but love every little flower that unveils its irritable minds, by reasoning.-The same. beauties to the glowing sun ?

Jests like salts should be used sparingly. Who does not love the birds, and the -The same. trees, and the flowers? Who does not Both a well adapted shoe, and a well rejoice in the beauty of all these creat- harmonized life, are accompanied with but ed things, and adore their Omnipotent

little pain.—The same.

Garments reaching to the feet impede the Creator ? Look at the little child how it exults body; and immoderate riches, the soul.

TEMPERANCE.— It is this virtue alone amongst the flowers of the field-how which places both the body and mind in its eye flashes at the sight of a daisy, their utmost degree of perfection; qualifyhow rapturously it follows with its eager ing the man for the study, the knowledge, gaze the butterfly of the little skyward and the practice of his duty, whereby hé speck—the singing lark that outpours and serve his country and his friends use

is enabled to govern his house prudently, the fulness of its heart. Where does the maiden most fondly

fully — Xenophon. learn the greatest mystery of her being? know, and men should not punish, yet

VICE. — Though the god's should not Where does she most lovingly plight would I not commit so mean a thing as her troth? In the valley, where the vice.-Seneca. stars are the sole spectators—in the VALUE OF HISTORY.-Not to know what glen, where the mute blossoms are the has been transacted in former times, is to only hearers.

continue always a child. If no use is Where goes the man from the toil of made of the labours of past ages, the world his busy battle for bread, to cool the

musi always remain in the infancy ofknow

ledge.-Cicero. fever of his brow, and let his heart

He who does an injury is more unhappy grow young, and noble, and generous than he who receives one. The same. again ?—to the hillside, to the river bank, It is the province of a magnanimous or the leafy wood, where he finds that man to bear with mildness the errors of there is beauty, gladness, and goodness, others. The same. in all that God has made.

THE STUDENT.-He that is well employWhat consoles the aged, after che- ed in his study, though he may seem to do rished hopes have faded, joys have nothing, does the greatest thing of all changed into sorrows, and the needless others, he lays down precepts for the govantagonists in the race of life for gold erning of our lives, and the moderating or renown, jostle by without noticing not only in the present, but in all succeedeven their silver hairs? They may turn ing generations.-Seneca. to the smile of God in the green fields, CONVERSATION. — Let your subject be on every blade of grass, and on every something of necessity and use; something little leaf. There it is as pure and holy, that may advance the love and practice of as when their eyes in childhood gazed virtue, reform the passions, or instruct the upon it so gladly. They may console

understanding.-Epicietus. themselves with the reflection, that the of less understanding by experience, the

Wise men are instructed by reason; men omnipotent and benevolent Author of most ignorant by necessity, and beasts by all the beauty, and goodness, and gran- nature.-Cicero. deur, around, is directing all His opera- Virtue is the only nobility.-Seneca. tions with perfect wisdom,-however It is necessary to be good rather than inscrutable; and that though men do appear so.- Democrates. not now, yet they will one day

Sin should be abstained from, not through

fear, but for the sake of the becoming. Love one another!

The same.

should never haunt him more. And then, A CHEERFUL HEART.

into that dream of a better life-into that "I cannot choose but marvel at the way vision of a cheerful home far off among the In which our lives pass on, from day to day, green hills-came a pleasant face-the Learning strange lessons in the human heart, face of his beloved mother. He èould see And yet like shadows letting them depart.”

her as she sat by the lattice at the qniet -Miss Landon.

evening hour, reading the sacred Bible, How wearily the little news-boy plodded with the last red rays resting like a glory along the deserted streets on that New upon her brow, while the rose-leaftrembled Year's eve ! The cold rain was beating at the window, and the little violets folded fiercely upon him, and a few tattered gar- themselves to sleep. Very pleasant was ments served to protect him from its rage. the picture now passing before the All day long had he been out amid the gaze of that ragged child-very glorious storm, and was now returning, weary and the panorama of green hills and bright hungry, to his humble home. The street fowers and singing birds—very beautiful lamps were lighted, and as he passed by that humble cottage, half covered by the them, you could see by the gleam that his clustering foliage ; and his heart thrilled face was pale and emaciated—could see and heaved with a strange rapture never that young as he was, something had been known before—such rapture, such joy, as there already to attenuate his features, and the stricken poor can never know, save give him that wan and desolate look when some good angel comes down from which can be given only by some great the blue heaven, and beckons them away affliction, some pinching want, or over- from the haunts of wo and want in which whelming grief. You could tell at a they suffer, to the free air and the blessed glance that a dark shadow was resting sunshine. upon his path way—a shadow out of which But the dream had passed ; the sun had there seemed, just then, no hope of escape. set; the flowers faded ; the cottage disBorn amid poverty and wretchedness, and appeared. Of all that beautiful vision, so left fatherless while yet in his cradle, his cheering and so glorious, no trace remainlife up to that hour had been nothing but ed; no vestige of leaf, or tree, or bird ; misery ; and the whole record of that life no letter of his mother's Bible-no lovewas written in his pale face and tattered light of his mother's eye, The darkness rags. Yet with all this, as he passed along came around him, and he found himself a close observer might have noticed a there amid the storm, in the silent streets strange light in his clear, blue eye-an of that great and sinful city. So, gatherexpression of kindly cheerfulness, such as ing his garments more closely about him, we may not often see in this world of care

he hurried along to his home, with a and grief ; for God's blessing was upon prayer upon his lip, and God's sunlight in him—the blessing of a cheerful heart.

his heart. Turning into an obseure street, The sorrow of his life, however deep and a few steps brought him to the door of a abiding—the gloom upon his pathway, wretched dwelling, which he entered. however dark and fearful, dimmed not the Follow now, and behold a scene of want light that burned so quietly, and yet so and penury, such as may be found somesteadily, within. Like the Vestal fire of times in this world of ours-a scene upon old, it grew not dim, but threw its rays far which men look with unconcern, but on out over the great gloom around him ; which, thank God! the angels gaze with even now the cold storm beat upon him joy ; a home where poverty struggles with unheeded. There are waking dreams a brave heart, and is conquered. that come upon us sometimes when we

Before the fire sat a pale, sad woman, least expect them-bright dreams of love, upon whose features the traces of great and home, and heaven-beautiful visions loveliness were still visible, though sorrow of the future, all glorious with its burden

had sharpened them somewhat, and ghastly of song and gladness ! And such a want done much to dim her beauty. Upon vision, of such a future, now filled and

her high and placid brow the blue veins crowded and blessed the heart of that for

were clearly visible, as the blood coursed saken boy. He was dreaming, as he through them with unwonted rapidity. walked along, of better days to come of Her large dark eyes were dim with tears. the time poverty in his pathway should Some new sorrow had started afresh the depart, and the beautiful flowers should

sealed fountain of her grief; and now, as spring up to bless him with their presence, she gazed silently upon the red embers of a bright home far away from that great in all the utter agony of despair, it miglit city, upon whose cheerful hearth the fire

seem that hope had gone for ever, and God should never go out, and where hunger forsaken her.

[blocks in formation]

“Mother !" said the boy, as he entered ing following that night of hunger, gilding all dripping with rain, “I have come at the spires and domes of the city with its last, and I am tired and hungry.

rays. The streets were already rapidly My son ! my son !" replied the mother, filling with the gay crowd seeking plea* there is no morsel of food in the house, sure, and men walked as though new life and her lip quivered. “We must starve ! had been given them by the general we must starve ! God help us !” and her hilarity and the bracing air. tears broke forth afresh.

In the most crowded street wasthe newsThus had it been for many a weary boy, but not the disconsolate wretched lad month. With scarcely food sufficient to who had plodded his way through the support life, that mother and her boy had storm, the night before, to a desolate home, struggled, and suffered, and wept, and and a supperless bed. You would not prayed ; and now that the cold winter was have recognised him as he hurried along, coming on, no wonder that her heart eagerly intent upon his avocation, and his shuddered and her cheek grew pale at the face all radiant with the great hope that hopeless prospect ahead. How could they struggled at his heart. pass the dreary days and long nights, the That night joy visited the forsaken firestorm and the terrible cold, without food side. They had paid the landlord his rent, and raiment and shelter? And then and still had sufficient left wherewith to where could they go, when the heartless purchase food. It was a merry New Year landlord should thurst them from their for them. present wretched dwelling, as he had Years came and went, Great changes threatened to do on the morrow? Verily, had taken place. The boy had grown to the gloom and the despair were great and manhood. High honours were conferred fearful !

upon him. Wealth flowed into his coffers And yet even at that desolate hour an his praise was upon every tongue. And eye looked down from Heaven upon that at this very hour, upon the banks of the friendless widow. There by the hearth- majestic Hudson, his mansion stands constone, by the dying embers, an angel spicuous among a thousand others for its hovered-an earthly angel, even in the taste and elegance. guize of that cheerful child. For

He has but one companion-his aged

mother-the lonely widow whom we saw "Earth had its angels, though their forms are moulded

some years ago, gazing mournfully into

the fire, and watching its flickering light. But of such clay as fashions all ; Though harps are wanting and bright pinions

His influence was felt far and wide, and folded,

the
poor

and wretched of every class and We know them by the love-light on their kind come around him with their blessings.

Thank God! thank God! for every “ Mother,” said he, “ we will not starve. suffering son of man, who thus comes up God has not forsaken us. There are better from the deep shadow of despair into the days to come, mother! I saw it in a dream, blessed sunlight, and, turning, gives his and in it I beheld your own dear self, and

word of cheer to the groping millions beyou were singing a pleasant song away in neath him. that blessed home. Oh, mother, cheer

Thank God ! thank God ! that, scattered. up! cheer up

here and there throughout the world, in When the little boy lay down upon his many a humble home, may be found men wretched couch that night, he was changed. and women, unto whom life presents but His mother's great despair bad trans

little of love, or hope, or joy, and yet who formed him from a suffering child into a pass along amid its desolate paths withstrong-hearted man-from a weak and out a murmur, sustained, and soothed, helpless dependent, into earnest,

and blessed by this alone-A CHEERFUL thoughtful worker, henceforth his path HEART. was one of duty alone ; and no allurement, be it ever so bright, could turn him from it. Before him glittered for ever a

brow.”

יין

an

If men's actions are an effect of their prin.

ciples, that is, of their notions, their belief, guiding star ; and his intense, absorbing their persuasions, it must be admitted that gaze, neither the cares nor the vanities of principles early sown in the mind are the seeds life could for an instant divert. Existence which produce food and harvests in the ripe had for him but one object, and his ut- state of manhood. How lightly soever some most energies were taxed for its attain

men may speak of notions, yet so long as the

soul governs the body, men's notions must in. Never did the sun rise in greater stronger or weaker ; and to good or evil, as

fluence their actions, more or less, as they are splendour than on the New Year's morn- thay are better or worse.

ment.

cence.

THE STUDY OF CREATION.

gions. There the soil receives them into its

bosom, and on the return of the genial seaBY P. J. WRIGHT.

son, they spring up, and wave in the breeze No. III.

with fascinating loveliness. It is owing to SUBLIMITY is an obvious characteristic of this wise arrangement, that many secluded Creation. Every thing in nature that fills scenes, which human industry has not culus with astonishment and awe, partakes of tivated, and human footsteps have seldom the sublime. The velocities of certain por visited, are covered with charming efflorestions of the universe, convey to the human

What a striking suitableness is mind strong impressions of sublimity. The found in the bread fruit tree of the South vast Globe on which we dwell, rolling in Sea Islands for the supply of human necesits orbit at the astonishing rate of more than. sities! It furnishes timber for canoes, and sixty thousand miles an hour; the comet houses, and articles of furniture, A fluid of 1680, flying through space at the almost oozes from it of a useful description. Suitincredible speed of eight hundred thousand able clothing is manufactured from the bark miles an hour; and the Sun, with all its of its branches. By its umbrageous statelimassive planets, rushing round some im- ness, it embowers the cottages ofthe natives, mense circumference, with a velocity equal and shelters them from the heat of the sun. to the motion of the earth. Among objects Its leaves are eaten and much relished by of sigh; which are exceedingly sublime, the cattle. And its fruit, of which there there is the ancient rock, the tremendous

are several varieties that grow ripe at sucavalanche, the burning volcano, the gloomy cessive periods, affords the population forest, the lonely waste, the torrent rushing abundance of pleasant and nourishing susthrough the deep ravine, the moveless lake tenance. What fitness there is in light, and embedded at the base of lofty hills, the air, and floating vapours, to beautify, foster, lightning blaze from the bosom of a lower and mature the productions of the earth! ing cloud, the uplifted waves of the storm- What a marvellous piece of mechanism is tossed sea, the darkness of midnight, the the human eye! How wonderfully adapted cycles of the planets, and the starlit firma- for the pleasing and useful perceptions of ment that overhangs the world. Among vision! And with what delicate skill are sublime sounds, there is the roar of the lion, the colours of the landscape suited to its the fitful moan of the rising tempest, thé contemplations! Mountains and hills have howl of the hurricane, the crash of torn-up been unwisely represented as excrescences trees, the echo of a dreary cavern, therumb

on the face of Nature. A reflective mind ling of an earthquake, the awful'dash of the perceives at once that they are the results cataract, the roll of the thunder, and the of skilful design. How admirably are they voice of ocean pouring forth

fitted to shelter the plains and vales from

the wild winds, that would wither or sweep “The deep, profound, eternal bass In Nature's anthem."

away the fairest and richest products of ve

getation! How finely adapted to intercept These objects and sounds arrest the eye, and and break up the clouds that refresh and vibrate on the ear of man; so as to fill his fertilize the fields! Howexcellently adjusted intellect with lofty imaginings, and to excite to give birth to the numerous springs, whose his heart with strong emotions. A con- waters rush and sparkle in the light of heasciousness of his own dignity is awakened ven till they swell into mighty rivers, subhe feels that he is endowed with faculties serving human interests, and filling large fitted to comprehend the majesty and gran- tracks of territory with fruitfulness, as they deur which surround him—and, giving full roll on to lose themselves in the depths of scope to the aspirations of his soul, he holds old Ocean! The position of the Sun in the communion with the Infinite One.

centre of the planetary system, its revolutions Adaptation is plainly seen in Creation. on its own axis, its immense magnitude, and Here a wide field opens to our view, and its unceasing radiations, constitute an inalmost bewilders our attention by the mul. telligent adjustment of means to illumine tiplicity of objects which crowd its out- | the ponderous globes that revolve in far spreadings. We can only select a few for distant circles. In fact, all forms and modes rapid observation. A careful examination of existence, from the minutest revealed by of various flowers that adorn Creation, un- the microscope, to the most stupendous disfolds a simple yet most effective provision covered by the telescope, are so constructed for their multiplication. The soft down as to accomplish important purposes in that rests upon them consists of numerous their relations to other parts of the universe. vegetable fibres. The lightness of these fi- Beauty is finely unfolded by Creation. bres renders it easy for the brisk gales of The abstract nature of beauty I shall not the atmosphere to detach them from the attempt to determine. Some writers think flowers and bear them away to remote re. that it results from a special sense, by which

« ZurückWeiter »