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With timid steps, till, by the music cheered,
With free and airy step, they bound along,
Then deftly wheel, and to their partner's face,
Turning this side, now that, with varying step.
Sometimes two ancient couples o'er the floor,
Skim through a reel, and think of youthful years.

Meanwhile the frothing bickers,* soon as filled,
Are drained, and to the gauntresst oft return,
Where gossips sit, unmindful of the dance.
Salubrious beverage! Were thy sterling worth
But duly prized, no more the alembic vast
Would, like some dire volcano, vomit forth
Its floods of liquid fire, and far and wide
Lay waste the land ; no more the fruitful boon
Of twice ten shrievedoms, into poison turned,
Would taint the very life blood of the poor,
Shrivelling their heart-strings like a burning scroll.


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In the island of Minorca, “ Their har- thorp, one from Grimsbury, and one from vests are generally gathered by the mid- Nethercote. These are called field-men, dle of June; and, as the corn ripens, a and have an entertainment provided for number of boys and girls station them- them upon the day of laying out the measelves at the edges of the fields, and on dow, at the appointment of the lord of the the tops of the fence-walls, to fright away

As soon as the meadow is meathe small birds with their shouts and sured, the man who provides the feast, cries. This puts one in mind of Virgil's attended by the hay-ward of Warkworth, precept in the first book of his ‘Georgics,' brings into the field three gallons of aie. • Et sonitu terrebis aves,'

After this the meadow is run, as they

term it, or trod, to distinguish the lots; and was a custom, 1 doubt not, among

and, when this is over, the hay-ward brings the Roman farmers, from whom the an

into the field a rump of beef, six peony cient Minorquins learned it. They also

loaves, and three gallons of ale, and is aluse for the same purpose, a split reed, lowed a certain portion of hay in return, which makes a horrid rattling, as they though not of equal value with his provishake it with their bands.”

sion. This hay-ward and the master of

the feast have the name of crocus-men. In Northamptonshire, “ within the li- In running the field each man hath a boy berty of Warkworth is Ashe Meadow, allowed to assist him. On Monday morndivided amongst the neighbouring pa- ing lots are drawn, consisting some of rishes, and famed for the following cus- eight swaths and others of four. Of these toms observed in the mowing of it. The the first and last carry the garlands. The meadow is divided into fifteen portions, two first lots are of four swaths, and whilst answering to fifteen lots, which are pieces these are mowing, the mowers go double ; of wood cut off from an arrow, and mark- and, as soon as these are finished, the ed according to the landmarks in the following orders are read aloud :— Qyez, field. To each lot are allowed eight mow. Oyez, Oyez, 1 charge you, under God, and ers, amounting to one hundred and twenty in his majesty's name, that you keep the in the whole. On the Saturday sevennight king's peace in the lord of the manor's after midsummer-day, these portions are behalf, according to the orders and cuslaid out by six persons, of whom two are toms of this meadow. No man or men chosen from Warkworth, two from Over- shall go before the two garlands; if you

+ Wooden frames on which beer casks are set. Johnson,

• Beakers.

do, you shall pay your penny, or deliver stand still a moment, for him to paint your scythe at the first demand, and this them. He must therefore be content, as so often as you shall transgress. No man, we are, to keep them as studies in the or men, shall mow above eight swaths storehouse of his memory. over their lots, before they lay down their Here are a few of those studies, which scythes and go to breakfast. No man, or he may practise upon till doomsday, and men, shall mow any farther than Monks. will not then be able to produce half the holm-brook, but leave tneir scythes there, effect from them that will arise spontaand go to dinner; according to the cus- neously on the imagination, at the mere tom and manner of this manor. God save mention of the simplest words which can the king! The dinner, provided by the describe them :—The sunburnt reapers, lord of the manor's tenant, consists of entering the field leisurely at early mornthree cheesecakes, three cakes, and a new, ing, with their reaphuoks resting on their milk cheese. The cakes and cheesecakes right shoulders, and their beer-kegs swingare of the size of a winnowing-sieve; and ing to their left hands, while they pause the person who brings them is to have for a while to look about them before three gallons of ale. The master of the they begin their work. The same, when. feast is paid in hay, and is farther allowed they are scattered over the field : some to turn all his cows into the meadow on stooping to the ground over the prostrate Saturday morning till eleven o'clock ; that corn, others lifting up the heavy sheaves, by this means giving the more milk the and supporting them against one another, cakes may be made the bigger. Other while the rest are plying their busy like customs are observed in the mowing sickles, before which the brave crop seems of other meadows in this parish."* to retreat reluctantly, like a half-defeated

army.–Again, the same collected togeHarvest time is as delightful to look fresh themselves, while the lightening

ther into one group, and resting to reon to us, who are mere spectators of it

, keg passes from one to another silently, as it was in the golden age, when the and the rude clasp-knife lifts the coarse gatherers and the rejoicers were one.

meal to the ruddy lips.—Lastly, the piledNow, therefore, as then, the fields are all

up wain, moving along heavily among alive with figures and groups, that seem, the lessening sheaves, and swaying from in the eye of the artist, to be made for side to side as it moves; while a few, pictures--pictures that he can see but whose share of the work is already done, one fault in, (which fault, by the by, con

lie about here and there in the shade, stitutes their only beauty in the eye of and watch the near completion of it.* the farmer ;) namely, that they will not

• Bridges' Northamptonshire.

• Mirror of the Months.


Who first may fill
The bellying bin, and cleanest cull the hops.
Nor ought retards, unless invited out
By Sol's declining, and the evening's calm,
Leander leads Lætitia to the scene
Of shade and fragrance-Then th' exulting band
Of pickers, male and female, seize the fair
Reluctant, and with boisterous force and brute,
By cries unmov'd, they, bury her in the bin.
Nor does the youth escape--him too they seize,
And in such posture place as best may serve
To hide his charmer's blushes. Then with shouts
They rend the echoing air, and from them both
(So custom has ordain'd) a largess claim.


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The harvest-men ring Summer out
With thankful song, and joyous shout ;
And, when September comes, they hail

The Autumn with the flapping flail.
This besides being named gerst- this season of the year.

A Saxon meno
monat” by the Anglo-Saxons, they also logy, or register of the months, (in Wan-
called haligemonath, or the
month," froin an ancient festival held at that denomination, and gives its deriva:

holy- ley's addition to Hickes,) mentions it under

tion in words which are thus literally * See vol. i. p. 1147.

translated “haligemonath—for that our




of age.

forefathers, the while they heathens were, beauty. Those of more southern counon this month celebrated their devil-gild.tries may, perhaps, match or even surpass To inquire concerning an exposition them, for a certain glowing and unbroken which appears so much at variance with intensity. But for gorgeous variety of this old name, is less requisite than to form and colour, exquisite delicacy of ting take a calm survey of the month itself. and pencilling, and a certain placid sweet

ness and tenderness of general effect,

which frequently arises out of a union of I at my window sit, and see

the two latter, there is nothing to be seen Autumn his russet fingers lay

like what we can show in England at On every leaf of every tree ; I call, hut summer will not stay.

this season of the year. If a painter, who

was capable of doing it to the utmost She flies, the boasting goddess flies,

perfection, were to dare depict on canvas And, pointing where espaliers shoot, one out of twenty of the sunsets that we Deserve my parting gift, she cries, frequently have during this month, he

I take the leaves, but not the fruit. would be laughed at for his pains. And Ştill, at this season

the reason is, that people judge of pic

tures by pictures. They compare HobThe rainbow comes and goes,

bima with Ruysdael, and Ruysdael with The moon doth with delight

Wynants, and Wynants with WouverLook round her when the heavens are bare; mans, and Wouvermans with Potter, and Waters on a starry night

Potter with Cuyp; and then they think Are beautiful and fair;

the affair can proceed no farther. And The sunshine is a glorious birth ;

the chances are, that if you were to show But yet we know, where'er we go,

one of the sunsets in question to a That there hath passed away a glory from the thorough-paced connoisseur in this deearth.

partment of fine art, he would reply, that " I am sorry to mention it,” says the it was very beautiful, to be sure, but that author of the Mirror of the Months, “ but

he must beg to doubt whether it was nathe truth must be told even in a matter tural, for he had never seen one like it in


year "then is on the wane. any of the old masters !" It is ' declining into the vale' of months. It has reached a certain age.'-It has In the “ Poetical Calendar" there is reached the summit of the hill, and is not the following address “ to Mr. Hayman,' only looking, but descending, into the probably Francis Hayman, the painter of valley below. But, unlike that into which Vauxhall-gardens, who is known to us the life of man declines, this is not a vale all, through early editions of several of of tears; still less does it, like that, lead our good authors, “with copper-plates, to that inevitable bourne, the kingdom of designed by Mr. Hayman.” the grave. For though it may be called (I hope without the semblance of profa

AN AUTUMNAL ODE. nation) the valley of the shadow of death, yet of death itself it knows nothing. Yet once more, glorious God of day,

While beams thine orb serene, No—the year steps onward towards its temporary decay, if not so rejoicingly, let me warbling court thy stay

To gild the fading scene! even more majestically and gracefully, than it does towards its revivification.

Thy rays invigorate the spring,

Bright summer to perfection bring, And if September is not so bright with The cold inclemency of winter cheer, promise, and so buoyant with hope, as And make th' autimual months the mildest May, it is even more embued with that spirit of serene repose, in which the only true, because the only continuous enjoy- 'Ere yet the russet foliage fall ment consists. Spring never is, but

I'II climb the mountain's brow, always to be blest;' but September is the My friend, my Hayman, at thy call,

To view the scene below: month of consummations-the fulfiller of all promises—the fruition of all hopes

How sweetly pleasing to behold.

Forests of vegetable gold ! the era of all completeness.

How mix'd the many chequer'd shades be“The sunsets of September in this country are perhaps unrivalled, for their The tawny, mellowing hue, and the gay vivid infinite variety, and their indescribable

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of the year.

Vol. II.-90.



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1188 How splendid all the sky! how still ! information,--that those ladies and genHow mild the dying gale!

tlemen who have country-houses in the How soft the whispers of the rill,

neighbourhood of Clapham-common or That winds along the vale!

Camberwell-grove, may now have the
So tranquil nature's works appear,
It seems the sabbath of the year:

pleasure of eating the best fruit out of As if, the summer's labour past, she chose

their own gardens-provided they choose This season's sober calm for blandishing re

to pay the price of it in Covent-garden

market."* pose. Such is of well-spent life the time,

The observer of nature, where nature When busy days are past;

can alone be fully enjoyed, will perceive, Man, verging gradual from his prime, Meets sacred peace at last :

that, in this month, among the birds, His flowery spring of pleasures o'er,

we have something like a renewal of the And summer's full-bloom pride no more,

spring melodies. In particular, the thrush He gains pacific autumn, mild and bland, and blackbird, who have been silent for And dauntless braves the stroke of winter's several weeks, recommence their songs, palsied hand.

bidding good bye to the summer, in the

same subdued tone in which they hailed For yet a while, a little while,

her approach-wood-owls hoot louder Involv'd in wintry gloom, And lo! another spring shall smile,

than ever; and the lambs bleat shrilly

from the hill-side to their neglectful dams;
A spring eternal bloom :
shall he shine, a glorious guest,

and the thresher's flail is heard from the
In the bright mansions of the blest,

unseen barn; and the plough-boy's whistle
Where due rewards on virtue are bestow'd, comes through the silent air from the
And reap'd the golden fruits of what his au- distant upland; and snakes leave their
tumn sow'd.

last year's skins in the brakes literally
creeping out at their own mouths ; and

acorns drop in showers from the oaks, at
It is remarked by the gentleman-usher every wind that blows; and hazel-nuts
of the year, that “ the fruit garden is one ask to be plucked, so invitingly do they
scene of tempting profusion.

look forth from their green dwellings ;
“Against the wall, the grapes have put on and, lastly, the evenings close in too
that transparent look which indicates quickly upon the walks to which their
their complete ripeness, and have dressed serene beauty invites us, and the mornings
their cheeks in that delicate bloom which get chilly, misty, and damp.”
enables them to bear away the bell of Finally, “another singular sight be-
beauty from all their rivals. The peaches longing to this period, is the occasional
and nectarines have become fragrant, showers of gossamer that fall from the
and the whole wall where they hang is upper regions of the air, and cover every

musical with bees.' Along the espa- thing like a veil of woven silver. You
liers, the rosy-cheeked apples look out may see them descending through the
from among their leaves, like laughing sunshine, and glittering and flickering in
children peeping at each other through it, like rays of another kind of light. Or
screens of foliage; and the young stand- if you are in time to observe them before
ards bend their straggling boughs to the the sun has dried the dew from off them
earth with the weight of their produce. in the early morning, they look like robes

“Let us not forget to add, that there is of fairy tissue-work, gemmed with innu-
one part of London which is never out of merable jewels.”+
season, and is never more in season than
now. Covent-garden market is still the

garden of gardens; and as there is not a
month in all the year in which it does

An Ode.
not contrive to belie something or other Farewell the pompoof Flora! vivid scene !
that has been said in the foregoing pages, Welcome sage Autumn, to invert the year-
as to the particular season of certain Farewell to summer's eye-delighted green !
flowers, fruits, &c., so now it offers the Her verdure fades-autumnal blasts are near.
flowers and the fruits of every season The silky wardrobe now is laid aside,
united. How it becomes possessed of all with all the rich regalia of her pride.
these, I shall not pretend to say: but
thus much I am bound to add by way of

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• Mirror of the Months.

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