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mountains, whose brows are continually bathed with the dews of heaven; in the innumerable charms of valleys dimpled and studded by the fingers of grace, and the usefulness of mighty streams purifying and fertilizing as they roll on, to melt into the bosom of eternal waters. Farewell. CARLO BLANCO.
SHOULD you, after a thunder storm, go into a field of buckwheat, you will probably find the crop quite black, just as though it had been burnt. The farmer attributes this blackness to the lightning; but what, in truth, is the actual cause? You shall hear what the sparrow told me, and the
bird had it of a willow tree that stood in a field of buckwheat, and stands there still. The tree bends till its branches almost sweep the ground; and its foliage has very much the appearance of long green In the neighbouring fields crops of rye, buckwheat, oats, &c., were flourishing There the grain stood in golden fulness, putting one in mind of a dense flock of bright canaries; and, as the fruit waxed heavier, the stalks would bend with their load in a spirit of patient humility. The buckwheat field lay around the willow-tree; but the buckwheat was proud and would not bend like other grain-it stood erect derisively.
"I am as rich as the ears of corn,' said the buckwheat; and, besides, am I not more beautiful? My petals are as handsome as apple blossoms; it must be quite delightful to look at me. Am I not splendid? Did vou ever see anything more beautiful, old willow?'
The tree made no answer, but gave a nod, as though he meant to say-"Yes, indeed, have I.'
Hereupon the buckwheat set the willow down as a stupid, insane old fellow -so very aged that the long grass was near upon suffocating him.
A fearful storm arose. The flowers folded their leaves and bowed their tender stems before the superior strength of the hurricane; but the buckwheat stood proudly erect.
Bow thy head, even as we do,' advised the flowers.
'Not I," answered the buckwheat. Be warned, and take our advice,' said the corn. The spirit of the storm is near upon us. His wings reach from the clouds above to the earth; he will crush thy fragile anatomy before thou canst ask mercy.'
'I bend not,' returned the obstinate buckwheat.
Shut up thy boasted flowers, and bend thee,' quoth the willow-tree; 'look not at the flashes of lightning, even mortal man dares not do that; for though the flashing fluid of God's heaven is seen, and such a sight is too grand for humanity. What then can we vegetables expect if we do that which man may not practise?'
"Tush!' said the buckwheat, 'I will gaze into God's own heaven.'
And the presumptuous plant did as it had threatened. Lightning came so fiercely, that the wide heavens appeared as one mighty expanse of flame. The storm passed
The flowers and corn stood in the
fresh pure air, invigorated by the rain; but the lightning had singed the buckwheat to a mere cinder, and it lay dead and useless upon the earth.
The willow was agitated by the gentrembling boughs as though the old tree tle breeze, and drops of liquid fell from its were weeping, And the sparrows chirped, here. Look at the bright sun and passing Why are you weeping? It is delicious clouds! Inhale the sweet fragrance of the hedgerows and flowers! Why then are you woful, venerable tree?'
And the willow told the sad story of the buckwheat's pride and presumption, and of the certain punishment of these vices. The sparrows are my authority. One evening I begged for a fairy tale, and they choose the history of the buckwheat."
HOW MANY CREATURES A MAN OF SBVENTY HAS EATEN.-A correspondent has calculated what a man might consume on an average in twenty years, "taking ten years for infancy, which is too much." Yes; far "too much." Mamma's darling Jacky, as papa knows to his cost, is carnivorous long before the completion of his tenth year; but "taking ten years off for infancy," although "it is too much," and allowing a man 4 lbs. of flesh meat per week," the consumption at the close of three-score years and ten amounts to 12,480 lbs., or 899 stone; or to 156 sheep of 80 lbs. each, or 20 bullocks of 44 stone; or, to take it another way, to 78 sheep and 10 bullocks, "with 6 stone over," which may stand for poultry, fish, &c. Say 20 of each in the year, or 1,200 poultry, and 1,200 fish. But if we take it in shrimps and shell fish (and "all is fish" that comes to our correspondent's net), Heaven only knows what animal life is destroyed to keep up the life of that one animal-Man.
STRAY THOUGHTS FROM THE EDITOR'S NOTE BOOK.
stately columns, its chaste cornices and lofty cupolas; we admire the design, the execution and finish; our minds are stirred and refined while gazing on the structure: but which, after all, commands our admiration most, the thing, lovely as it may appear, or the genius which gave the thing birth? That edifice, noble as it may be, had an ideal before it had a substantial existence. It did not grow up of its own. accord. It sprang from mind. Much as we may admire St. Paul's Cathedral, we must admire Sir Christopher Wren more.. In fact we admire the one and venerate the other. The architect speaks to us through the edifice. Though it stands there cold and motionless before you, it speaks to you in language so warm, and in accents so thrilling, that you are moved, exalted, inspired. Yes, every one of these pillars and chiselled stones has a tongue. Listen to it, and you will hear Wren, whose body was deposited in the tomb centuries since, speak to you. Look and listen attentively, and you will hear him grow quite eloquent; you will feel his mind brought into close contact with your own, you will receive grateful impulses from a congenial spirit; you will go away with higher conceptions of yourself, of man generally, of the great human brotherhood, of the vast universe, and of the still greater God who presides over its destinies.
THE religious element in the human heart, the religious tendencies of human nature, the religious establishments of the world, the religious associations clinging so closely around man's eventful history, are all worthy of the profoundest attention. What is religion, whether it be seen in superstition like a diamond in a bed of dust, in mythology deeply incrusted with ignorance, in the devotional devotee who fancies that mortification of the flesh will ensure his salvation, or in the sublime aspirations of Sir Isaac Newton, who, whenever he men tioned the august name, God, would take off his hat in reverence: what is religion in these and in innumerable other aspects and manifestations, but one of the "great facts" of human history, one of the greatest privileges of man. He who is careless or indifferent to this matter, does himself perhaps the greatest injustice, and deprives himself of the highest pleasures man is capable of enjoying. To dive into the depths of one's moral being, to search into the well-springs of his hopes and aspirations, to experience emotions which spontaneously arise in grateful obedience to contemplations ofthe beautiful and true, to bend in reverence before the sublime necessities of the universe, to be conscious of a dependence on a loftier nature than our own: to look around upon the green, glad earth, or up through the bluesky, or onward through the star-decked heavens; to swim in imagination over the countless ages of the eternity that is past, and then onward on the stream of time, and onward still into the everlasting future; to stand alone amid the hush of men, of flowers and stars, and then while absorbed in our own consciousness to try to sound the depths of our own inner nature, to measure its vast capabilities, its boundless desires, its dependence on some mighty invisible, but not inappreciable spirit, that controls and governs all; to be lost in veneration beneath the grandeur and immensity of this spirit, to long after its closer presence, to thirst for larger and sweeter inspirations from its exhaustless depths of purity and love, to aspire after a perpetual continuation of being, to wish to get higher and higher, and to grow holier and holier, and never to cease obeying, and loving, and hoping; to so think, feel, and enjoy, are not privileges which belong exclusively to the inhabitants of one clime or another, but
What is wealth but the production of the man? Is the thing produced greater than the producer? We look at the noble building, at its architectural beauty, at its
The human mind has folded up within it, germs of which a seraph might boast. It is the most valuable thing on God's green earth. The poor man may be unable to tell you who his grandfather was, but he will not be unable to date his pedigree back to God. He has no coat of arms but those his Creator gave him. He knows nothing ofarmorial distinctions and heraldic crests, but on his nature is engraven the broad arrow of the King of Kings. His brow was never pressed with a mitre or a crown, but there will be found wrapped up the organs of Veneration, Benevolence, Hope. He never had the title of knighthood conferred on him. He never had the truly illustrious distinction of being made a Knight of the Garter, but he can call Socrates his brother. He cannot be called a monarch, but he can be called a man. He never saw the face of a king or the blandishments. of court, but he has oftentimes admired the stream and the mountain, skirted with groves; he has frequently basked in the sunshine, meditated amid dancing starbeams, and looked through nature up to nature's God. He never inhabited a mansion, but he can, with the telescope of faith, look over the peninsula of time, behold Heaven, the abode of stainless spirits, and call it Home.
THE SOFT PLANK.
ORIGIN OF MECHANICS' INSTITUTES.
AN EXCURSION of a thousand miles was COMMUNICATED BY DR. HARRISON BLACK. projected and carried out by the proprietors of a Scotch steamer. It was in summer-the weather was beautiful, and so many were anxious to join in the trip, that when the ship had left her last place of call, it was found that the vessel was inconveniently crowded. The splendour of the scenery and the fineness of the day made all pass pleasantly, but as the evening approached, it was found that there were not berths enough for all those on board.
A contention now arose as to who should
SOMEWHERE about fifty years ago, Dr. Birkbeck was acting as Professor of Natural Philosophy at the Andersonian Institution at Glasgow. Some apparatus, required to elucidate one of his lectures, was out of repair, and two or three artizans were sent for by him to remedy the defects. After he had given them the necessary directions, one of the men remarked, "How much better we should be able to do this work, if we understood the objects of these instruments, and the principles upon which they are constructed." The professor replied, "My friends, will you listen to me if I try to explain them to you?" "O yes, Sir, certainly, if we stay till to-morrow morning," was the answer. It was given in so sincere and thankful a tone, that, although it was now late at night, the benevolent Doctor commenced an elaborate explanation, and the rays of the next morning's sun were shining, when that group separated, one going to his repose, the others to their daily toil. The readiness and the zeal of these craftsmen to acquire intellectual information, produced such an effect upon the Doctor, that he invited all the artizans of Glasgow to attend his lectures gratuitously. A mechanics' class was subsequently formed, and not long after Mechanics' Institutes sprung up in various localities. Thus it will be seen how small an incident may lead to a great public pood.
have the limited accommodation, and who
THE YOUNG EGYPTIAN.
IN Glasgow, at a meeting of some anxious for the public good, principally Sunday school teachers, there was one who attracted our attention very particularly from his correctness in the course. From the tinge of his skin we thought he had some Indian blood in his veins.
On speaking about the applicability of steam to promote progress, he stated that
SOME years ago, before the reformation of criminals was so much thought of as their punishment, a benevolent Middlesex magistrate was most energetic in endeavouring to establish a school in the prison of which he was a visiting justice, with a view to the reclamation of juvenile offenders. His brother magistrates looked upon the scheme as visionary, or Quixotic, and as they frequently met him returning from his daily visits to the jail, they did not hesitate to throw out an occasional joke at his expense. On one bitter winter morning, he was accosted by two of them, who said, "Don't you find your work this morning awfully cold?" "Gentlemen," he replied, "a man forgets cold when he is trying to benefit his fellow-world i.e. its inhabitants are moving on, creatures! he does not think of winter that an Englishman should go to Scotwhen his heart is warm for the public land and be shown one of its mechanical good." wonders by a young Egyptian.
steam engine larger than any then existing was being constructed in Glasgow, and that if I wished to see it he would show it. The next morning we found the elegant young man of the preceding evening clothed in leather, and working at the engine. We then found he was a young Egyptian sent here to acquire the mechanic arts for the public good of his country; but his own heart had prompted him to examine Sunday and infant schools, judging thereby he would best promote the public good. It was a subject of thought, and showing how the
combined labours. For some time past a loud complaint has arisen from a large body of oppressed tailors in London. This complaint was not made without cause, for most unjust dealings have been practised on them by the proprietors of large flaming establishments. Public meetings have been called together for the purpose of petitioning Parliament to interfere in the matter. This was trying to remove the evil by wrong by an evil; and the remedy would be as means. It would be putting down an evil
bad as the disease. If the heads of estab
lishments, made notorious by the might of advertising, practise flagrant injustice on those who work for them, let the facts be from some quarter will most assuredly made known to the public, and assistance sooner or later come. If John Bull is selfish, he is also sympathetic. It may take a long time to touch his heart and arouse his feel
ings, but when he is moved, he acts in earnest. Let unjustly-treated tailors, of any other class of persons, state their case, and there is sufficient humanity in the heart into action for the relief of the oppressed. of the nation awaiting to be summoned In the case of the tailors, we have long thought that the remedy lay almost If designing solely in their own hands. men have unfairly dealt with them, they have also most unfairly dealt with themselves. Unfortunately, to a great degree, they have, by their intemperate habits, so weakened themselves, as to permit others to take advantage of them. They have hugged at the same time the worst species railed against the tyranny of others, and
of tyranny to their hearts. But better days are in store for them. Their social salvation depends more on themselves than on others. They must work their way upwards by their own energies. And what better means can they use than those attendant on and derivable from co-operation. We look upon co-operation as the most available and mightiest lever at their command. We see in co-operation the secret of England's tailors, or hatters, or shomakers, or carpen regeneration. What can binder ten or twenty ters co-operating together, and equally Nothing. Let them do so; let them be sharing the profits of their industry?
faithful one towards another; let them be industry, charity, forbearance, and persebound together by the ligaments of honesty, verance, and they will find that there is sufficient generosity and manliness in the public heart to respond to their wishes and their labours. Success then, say we, to Walter Cooper and his confederates, at their establishment, 34, Castle-street, Oxford-street.
Underneath we give some very "curious" and "comical" epitaphs, which have been collected from almost as many graveyards. In a future number we hope to give a few specimens of another kind which will be as serious and beautiful as the accompanying are trifling and ludicrous. We shall feel very thankful to any of our friends who would send us any which they think would suit our purpose. There is
14. G. R. A.-Et Dieu dit, que la lu" scarcely a graveyard but what contains epitaphs mière soit, et la lumière fut. of either the one description or the other; and we think there is scarcely one of our readers but could lend us a little assistance in collecting them.
12. G. D.-2. 5. 8.
13. J. P.-The woman's oranges numbered 420, their value being £1 15s.
15. There are differences in the form of governments as legitimate as there are differences of character, geographic position, intellectual, moral, and physical development of different peoples. Nations, like individuals, have different ages. Lamartine.