Abbildungen der Seite

tion of the Roman offerings of the Primitiæ, adopted by the earlier Christians. Another custom was, that of certain officers patrolling through the fair, dressed in antique armour, and preceded by musicians playing the fair tune. In the skirts of the town of Wolverthampton are ranged, at determinate distances, a number of large trees, marking the limits between the township and the parish. These the inhabitants call Gospel trees, from the practice of reading the gospel under them when the clergy used to perambulate the boundaries.

26.--AUGUSTIN, or AUSTIN, First Archbishop of Canterbury. He came into England in the year 596, and died on this day, A.D. 607.

27.-VENERABLE BEDE. This great ornament of his age and country was born at Jarrow, in the bishoprick of Durham, A.D. 672, and died in 735.

28.-'ASCENSION DAY. From the earliest times a day was set apart to commemorate our Lord's ascension into heaven. On this day parish boundaries are perambulated, and the custom is of considerable antiquity. Spelman thinks it was derived from the heathens, and that it is an imitation of the feast called Terminalia, which was observed in the month of February in honour of the god Terminus, who was supposed to preside over bounds and limits, and to punish all unlawful usurpations of land. On this festival, the people of the country assembled with their families, and crowned with garlands and flowers the stones which separated their different possessions, and sprinkled them, in a solemn manner, with the blood of a victim, generally a zlamb or a young pig, which was offered to the god who presided over the boundaries. Libations of milk and wine were made.

In making the parochial perambulations formerly

in this country on Ascension-day, the minister, accompanied by the churchwardens and parishioners, used to deprecate the vengeance of God, by a blessing on the fruits of the earth, and implore him to preserve the rights of the parish. The custom is thus noticed by Withers in his · Emblems:'

That every man might keep his own possessions,
Our fathers used, in reverent processions,
(With zealous prayers and with praisefull cheers)
To walk their parish limits once a-year;.
And well-known marks (which sacrilegious hands
Now cut or break) so bordered out their lands,
That every one distinctly knew his own;

And many brawls, now rife, were then unknown. *28. 1828.-HON. MRS. DAMER DIED, ÆT. 79.

In the art of sculpture Mrs. Damer, undoubtedly, took the lead of all amateurs. In early life she received lessons from Ceracchi, and also from the elder Bacon; and she even followed the example of professional artists in taking a voyage to Italy to im. prove herself. Her elegant, tasteful, and classical productions are widely scattered as presents. At the suggestion of her relative, Sir Alexander Johnston, with a view to aid the advancement of European arts in India, she sent a bust of Lord Nelson to the King of Tanjore; and she presented another bust of Nelson to the Corporation of London, which is placed in the Common-Council Room at Guildhall. A statue of George the Third, by Mrs. Damer, adorns the Register Office at Edinburgh, and her beautiful bust of Sir Joseph Banks, at the British Museum, is well known. But, perhaps, the most public of her works are the colossal heads of the Thames and Isis, on Henley Bridge. Several of her busts are in the hands of private individuals. Mrs. Damer possessed one of the best-selected and most valuable libraries that was ever formed by a female collector.

29.-KING CHARLES' II RESTORED. For particulars of this day see our former volumes. In a poem called "The Annal of an Oak,' lately published at Norwich, an ancient Oak at Kilverstone, in Norfolk, descended from the royal tree which sheltered King Charles II, is made to relate its observations and those of a jackdaw that nestles in its branches. Descanting on modern symbols of approaching change, the Oak remarks

Besides those episodes called lovers' vows,
What wild discourses pass beneath my boughs!
The veriest clown will dogmatise far more
Than schoolmen and philosophers of yore;
Fresh from his Institute, the smith exclaims,
• What care we now for venerable names !
Hail, reign of intellect! proud march of mind!
Our sires, where are they? distanced, far bebind !
Darkling they groped their lost, bewildered way,
And, talking nothings, merely lived their day.
What knew they then of talismanic steam?
No more than yon poor crows of Shrove-tide dream.
Ill-fated men ! their's was the halo's haze,
Our's the full, glorious, intellectual blaze.'
To bear him criticise art, science, text,

You'd marvel what the world will come to next. : We may also quote the moral reflections on the fall of the Royal Oak, in Worcestershire, which is stated to have taken place in 1826.

What gloomy meditations close the day
That lays our last surviving parent low!
That takes the only barrier away
Which seemed to shield us from the mortal blow!
"Tis sad to be the oldest of one's race-
To see no more on earth the well-known face,
That, with unmixt disinterested glee,
Benignly smiled on our prosperity;
Or, like the rainbow gleaming through a shower,
Could cast à radiance on our darkest hour.
"Tis sad to see Infirmity's stern band
Wave o'er our trembling heads her withering brand;
To find our limbs grow stiff, rheumatic, ailing,
Sight, touch, and hearing dull, and memory failing.
Yet still, by Providence's kind behest,
Appropriate pleasures on each period rest:
If busy scenes our youthful fancy please,
Age bas its benison-the sense of ease.


Still there are cordials sent in life's declipe,
To cheer our progress to the land divine-
Some fruits late ripening still reserved in store,
Though paler-hued than those we plucked before-
Joys that can penetrate the gathering gloom,
As flowers at eve exhale their soft perfume.

Modern Discoveries. Columbus discovered America in the night between the 11th and 12th of October, 1492; Captain Franklin completed the discovery of this new world on the 18th of August, 1826. How many generations have passed away, how many revolutions have taken place, how many changes have happened among nations, in this space of three hundred and thirty-three years, nine months, and twenty-four days! The world no longer resembles the world of Columbus. On those unknown seas, above which was seen' to rise a black hand, the hand of Satan, which seized ships in the night, and dragged them to the bottom of the abyss; in those antarctic regions, the abode of night, horror, and fables ; in those furious seas about Cape Horn and the Cape of Storms, where pilots turned pale; in that double océan which lashes its double shores ; in those latitudes formerly so dreaded, packets perform regular voyages for the conveyance of letters and passengers. An invitation to dinner is sent from a flourishing city in America to a flourishing city in Europe, and the guest arrives at the appointed hour. Instead of those rude, filthy, infectious, damp ships, in which you had nothing but salt provisions to live upon, and were devoured by scurvy, elegant vessels offer to passengers cabins wainscotted with mahogany, provided with carpets, adorned with mirrors, flowers, libraries, musical instruments, and all the delicacies of good cheer. A voyage requiring several years' researches in latitudes the most various, shall not be attended with the death of a single seamen. As for tempests, we laugh at them. Distances have disappeared. A mere whaler sails to the south pole: if the fishery is not prosperous, she proceeds to the north pole; to catch a fish she twice crosses the tropics, twice traverses a diameter of the earth, and touches, in the space of a few months, the two extremities of the globe. On the doors of the taverns of London is seen posted the announcement of the sailing of the packet for Van Dieman's land, with all possible convenience for passengers to the Antipodes; and beside that, the notice of the departure of the packet from Dover to Calais. We have pocket itineraries, Guides, Manuals, for the use of persons who purpose to take a trip of pleasure round the world. This trip lasts nine or ten months, and sometimes less; we set out in winter, on leaving the opera; touch at the Canaries, Rio Janeiro, the Phillipines, ('hina, India, and the Cape of Good Hope ; and return home for the opening of the hunting season. Steam-boats no longer care for contrary winds on the ocean, or for opposing currents in rivers: they are kiosks, or floating pa. Jaces of two or three stories, from whose galleries the traveller admires the most magnificent scenery of nature in the forests of the New World. Commodious roads cross the summits of mountains and open deserts, heretofore inaccessible; forty thonsand travellers meet on a party of pleasure to the cataract of Niagara. On iron railways the heavy vehicles of commerce glide rapidly along; and if France, Germany, and Russia, thought fit to establish a telegraphic line to the wall of China, we might write to our friends in that country and receive their answers in the space of nine or ten hours. A man commencing bis pilgrimage at the age of eighteen years, and finishing it at sixty, if he had gone but four leagues a day, would bave travelled nearly seven times the circumference of our planet. The genius of man is truly great for his petty habitation: what else can we conclude from it, but that he is destined for a higher abode ?

CHATEAUBRIAND. SonNet. (Written for Time's Telescope, by Richard Howitt.) Men with adventurous keels through unknown seas

Have found their perilous way; and, unconfined,
Roved through strange lands, and dared the deadly breeze

Of deserts-adding to the stores of mind.
They bave sought deep into the earth—have sought

To rend alt mystery from the earth and sky;
Making far worlds familiar unto thought-

Conferring power on the mind's sov'reignty. Pyramids which stand, and temples desolate,

In savage grandeur, show how mep bạye striven; Powerful, though impotent to cope with fate ;

To save a name warring with earth and heaven. Nor, erring, be they blamed-all speak a soul Which earth may limit, but may not controul!

« ZurückWeiter »