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situated in a small orchard, without any coping or raised outline, so that it is not easily discovered. The grass grows up to its mouth, and hangs down it in the inside ; but between the rude flint stones which line the interior grows a very delicate and remarkable moss, though in a small quantity. This moss, though dark when first gathered, soon becomes of a lively green, and this color continues unchanged.* At least we have specimens of the moss gathered near sixteen years ago, which are of a bright and beautiful green still; and the scent of this moss is very sweet, and so remains. A small portion of this moss, gathered sixteen years ago, was the happy instrument under the Divine blessing, of an astonishing cure ; and, as far as the present writer knows, this is the first instance of such an effect from the use of the moss, though many have received miraculous cures from the devout use of the water: one of which favored individuals, who was cured more than twenty years ago, still lives in the village of Cossey to attest the powerful intercession of our holy patron, St. Walstan. The water from the well at Babur has a peculiarly soft and pleasant taste, and retains its sweetness apparently for any length of time. To this day it is considered extremely efficacious, but particularly for the eyes; and many persons, not Catholics, are in the habit of procuring it from the well, under the supposition (!) of its peculiar virtues for the cure of diseases. There is still living at Babur an old man, who, in his younger days, kept an inn there, which was frequented by crowds of visitors to St. Walstan's well. These facts, though founded on a grossly mistaken notion of the proper use of the water, sufficiently attest in how great veneration this well must have been held in the happy ages of faith. †
"The oxen finally mounted the steep ascent above the well, and rested on its summit. It is said, in the traditions of our neighbourhood, that St. Walstan directed his body to be buried on the spot where his two oxen should finally lie down with
Another miracle! Saturated with water, any moss would appear darker than when perfectly dry.
+ What are we to understand by this, but that the miraculous cures of which so much is said, are not believed in by the Catholics themselves, but are 'founded in a grossly mistaken notion ?”
their precious charge. The church of Babur was doubtless built in his honor on that very spot, as it is dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary and St. Walstan.* The tower is round, and much older than any part of the present church; it is therefore in all probability the original tower. It is a poor patched-up edifice, with scarce any uniformity of style or character, and bearing every where marks of barbarous spoliation. It is easy, however, to perceive that it was once a place of glory, and enriched with a profusion of ornament."
THE GUARDED HOUSE. WHEN the year 1814 began, troops of Swedes, Cossacks, Germans, and Russians were within half an hour's march of the town of Sleswick, and new and fearful reports of the behaviour of the soldiers were brought from the country every day. There had been a truce, which was to come to an end at midnight of the 5th of January, which was now drawing near.
On the outskirts of the town, on the side where the enemy lay, there was a house standing alone, and in it there was a pious old woman, who was earnestly praying in the words of an ancient hymn, that God would raise up a wall around them, so that the enemy might fear to attack them. In the same house dwelt her daughter, a widow, and her grandson, a youth of twenty years. He heard the prayer of his grandmother, and could not restrain himself from saying that he did not understand how she could ask for anything so impossible, as that a wall should be built around them, which should keep the enemy away from their house. The old woman, now deaf, caused what her grandson said to be explained to her, but only answered, that she had 'prayed in general for protection for themselves and their town-people; “However,” she added, “ do you think that if it were the will of God to build a wall around us, it would be impossible to Him ?”
And now came the dreaded night of the 5th of January, and about midnight the troops began to enter on all sides. The
* Logical reasoning.-The church is dedicated to the Virgin and St. Walstan -ergo, it must be built on the spot which the saint directed.
house we are speaking of lay close to the road, and was larger than the dwellings near it, which were only very small
cottages. Its inhabitants looked out with anxious fear, as parties of soldiers entered one after another, and even went to the neighbouring houses to ask for what they wanted, but all rode past their dwelling. Throughout the whole day, there had been a heavy fall of snow,
the first that winter; and towards evening the storm became violent, to a degree seldom known. At length came four parties of Cossacks, who had been hindered by the snow from entering the town by another road. This part of the outskirt was at some distance from the town itself, and therefore they would not go further, so that the houses around that where the old woman lived were filled with soldiers. In several houses there were fifty or sixty of these half-savage
It was a terrible night for those who dwelt in that part of the town, filled to overflowing with the troops of the enemy; but not a single soldier came into the grandmother's house; and amidst the loud noises and wild sounds all around, not even a knock at the door was heard, to the great wonder of the family within. The next morning as it grew light, they saw the
The storm had drifted a mass of snow to such a height between the roadside and the house, that to approach it was impossible. “Do you not now see, my son,” said she, “that it was possible for God to raise a wall around us."
Does not this story remind us of the words—" The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear him; and delivereth them.” Does it not seem as if the snow had been gathered together as by angel-hands, to form a defence for that house where one dwelt who thus feared God, and trusted in Him ?
THE CLERGYMAN'S VISIT. “I was one Sunday afternoon,” says a superintendent, “ about to close the school in which I was engaged, when a well-dressed, genteel person,
who presented himself as a visitor, requested me to allow him to speak to the children. This being readily granted, he addressed them nearly to the following effect.
“There was once a poor lad who was noted, even among his sinfal companions, for wickedness, but especially swearing and Sabbath breaking. He, along with others, resolved to pelt some steady boys who were going to their school; however, it so happened, that the lads on being attacked ran away. This lad followed them to the very doors of the school, which when opened, as they were then singing, such a sound came from the place as seemed to stun him. He wondered what they could be doing inside; and a teacher at that moment admitted the other boys, and invited him in. A new scene now opened itself upon him-nearly three hundred boys seated with their teachers. They all appeared so neat and clean, and in such order, that he wished he was one of them. He stood for some time a spectacle for the whole school, dirty and ragged, and with his wooden clogs on.
“ After some consultation, it was resolved to admit him into the A B C class. Everything was new to him.
“ “ The next Sabbath when he appeared, his hair was combed, his face washed, and a pair of shoes were given to him. He now found himself so much behind the other boys, that he resolved to strain every nerve to get up to them. This determination was the means of his rising to the very first class, when his conduct being approved of, he was chosen a teacher. He now felt he had something more to do than to teach; he had a soul to be saved or lost. In a little time he was enabled, after much prayer, to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and to rejoice in his salvation. The Lord then called him to preach these glad tidings, and happening some time after to officiate within twenty miles of his own much-beloved school, he rode hard after the morning's labors, and reached the place just in time to see the poor lads in his own, very own, school, and here he is now speaking to you !""
“The scene now became truly affecting; he burst into tears, as did several others around him; at last he sobbed out, “O my dear lads, be in right good earnest to make the most of your very great Sabbath-school privileges; I have kept you too long! He then concluded with a most affecting prayer.”
CURIOUS WEATHER-RECORD. THERE are still to be found some persons in the world who cry out against the utilitarian tendencies of the age, as if every thing were not intended to be used—as if God had sent us into the world simply to amuse ourselves with speculations, which, however interesting and absorbing in themselves, are of little real benefit to mankind.
We by no means decry science of any kind, but we think it of comparatively little value till it finds an exponent, and a purpose in some of the polite, the instructive, or the useful arts. We are greatly in love with the sublimities of Astronomy, but so cold and unpoetical is our temperament, that we should think still more highly of it, if we could turn it to account on land, as profitably as, by means of Navigation, it has been employed at
The phenomena of Electricity and its kindred sciences possess a deep interest in our minds; but truth compels us to record the fact that we have a much higher opinion of the man, who through the medium of the Electric Telegraph, can school them to cry"Stop Thief!" than of its illustrious discoverer, who only made use of them to round a period and give expression to a democratic sentiment. We admire Geology, too, very much ; but we shall like it still better when we find its advocates and teachers willing to embark a fortune on the strength of their theories and deductions, and to go and sell all they have to buy this or that field, which they have again and again proved, by the infallible rules of their science, must contain hidden treasure.
A short time since, the scientific world was startled by the announcement that machinery had been at length taught to speak. Had this attempt at a Speaking Machine succeeded to the full extent of the inventor's wishes, what great results could have been expected to follow ? A parrot might have laughed him down. And yet what a prodigious outcry was raised about it.
An invention infinitely less complicated, and far more useful, has lately come under our observation, in which there seems to be' a development not of man's outward, but of his inner, nature - his faculties of observation, of memory, and of description. Not that these things really exist, though the results might naturally lead to that conclusion, as the instru