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foreign soil, than the natives of plains and flat countries. They are a race inured to hardier habits, to fiercer exertions, and altogether to a bolder and more masculine mode of life, than the inhabitants of places more easily brought under the power of cultivation. The sublime scenery, too, by which they are surrounded the precipices, torrents, caverns, glens, and all the grandeur of the eternal mountains-the mists that suddenly come on, covering all things like a rolling ocean, and as rapidly dispersed before a flood of light-the gorgeoous and gloomy vicissitudes of clouds-the thunder pouring its supernatural voice, answered by a thousand echoes-the storm that, collected within the deep defiles, rushes with headlong fury towards the champaign-all these, and more, that speak the wildest emotion of nature, fill the mind with a kind of poetic fervour, that makes local attachments more fascinating than they can become from the influence of more regulated and colder associations. This poetic feeling, added to the buoyancy of fine spirits, arising from that elastic health which temperance, toil, and a pure atmosphere inspire, gives the mountaineer more enterprise and imagination than other people. That enterprise tempts him to leave his country, but imagination soon calls him back to it: whether prosperous or unfortunate, in sickness or health, society or solitude the sound of a wild air, which he heard among his native hills, penetrates his soul like the wailing of his forsaken country. It carries him in remembrance to those majestic summits, where his infancy was rock
ed amid the war of elements-to the torrent whose gushing melody he loved-to the blossomed heath, over which he bounded in the chace; and the green and lonesome dell, where he reposed from his fatigue-his panting dog beside him. Such recollections arise in the bosom of the Swiss adventurer, when that wild and melancholy strain, the Ranz des Vaches, reminds him, in the midst of civilized countries, and of populous cities, of that rude home to which his heart is bound by this mysterious charm of nature, and he flings off all artificial ties to regain once more the scenes of simple pleasures and stern independence.
AN comes into the world the most helpless and dependent of all creatures. And,certainly, no object of suffering is so calculated to touch all the tender chords in our bosom as a defenceless child, cast upon the
"—— as the child whom scaring sounds molest, Clings close and closer to the nurse's breast; So the loud torrent and the whirlwind's roar,
But bind him to his native hills the more."
Impressions, sometimes as strong, but always powerful, are produced upon the mind of the Scotch or Irish Highlander in distant climes, when a favourite Highland air brings to his imagination those "banks and braes," which a fond fidelity to the name of country have dearly consecrated, by a sort of religious remembrance.
It is not the power of musicit is not the eloquence of song that does this, though it has been so stated; but it is that powerful influence of association, which music, heard in early life, in the midst of scenes that exert over us something like a moral enchantment, calls into action, touching the purest chords of our affections, not by the mere power of sweet sounds, but by the train of circumstances connected with them, awakening a sad and delicious memory.
wide world, deprived of the fostering hand of parental tenderness, and destitute of a friend to guide its steps, relieve its wants, and wipe away its tears!
Providence seems to have permit
ted our nature, occasionally, to suffer in such distressful circumstances, to elicit all the softest emotions we possess; and it is impossible to resist the appeal without doing violence to ourselves. For here it is helpless misery, without one energy to relieve itself;-it is simple misery, uncaused by vice or folly;-it is extreme misery, heightened by every circumstance that can interest the heart, that demands our commiseration. Surely, then, we shall not be alike deaf to the claims of humanity-the cries of wretchedness-the sympathies of our nature and the voice of Providence; —but, shall rather seize with pleasure the opportunities afforded us, of ameliorating the condition of the helpless
and miserable; and thus answer one of the noblest ends of our existence. And, if our wealth, our influence, and our talents are thus employed while the season of action continues; in circumstances of distress, and periods of suffering and incapacity, which alike await the whole of our race, we may delight ourselves with the reflections of a venerable patriarch: "When the ear heard me, then it blessed me; and when the eye saw me, then it gave witness to me: because I delivered the POOR that cried, and the FATHERLESS, and him that had none to help him. The blessing of him who was ready to perish came upon me, and I caused the WIDOW'S heart to sing for joy.”
BORNOU INSOLVENT ACT.
THE HE following is a far wiser mode of obtaining payment of a debt by a creditor, than yielding up what little the debtor may possess to the gripe of the attorney. In Bornou, when "A man refuses to pay his debts and has the means, on a creditor pushing his claims, the Cadi takes possession of the debtor's property, pays the demand, and takes a per centage for his trouble. It is necessary, however, that the debtor should give his consent; but this is not long withheld, as he is pinioned, and laid on his back till it is given; for all which trouble and restiveness he pays handsomely to the Cadi. On the other hand, should a man be in debt and unable to pay, on clearly proving his poverty, he is at liberty: the Judge then says- God send you the means!'-the bystanders say, 'Amen!' and the insolvent has full liberty to trade where he pleases."
At Penn's Rocks, near Tunbridge Wells, on Tuesday December 4, died Mr. John Bishopp, aged fortytwo years. He was a man of the most singular habits; penurious to
the last degree, although living in the possession of property estimated at least worth 60,000l. His garb was that of the commonest labourer, and generally that which had been thrown off by others. His mansion, a spacious and rather handsome building, (which is remarkable for having been built by the celebrated William Penn, whose residence it was, and from whom the estate now takes its name,) he has suffered to go into a most ruinous state of dilapidation; even in the apartment in which he died, old rags supplied, in some parts of the window, the place of glass; and every thing else was in the same style of wretchedness. He was in the habit of attending auction sales, and particularly those of inferior goods, where he generally purchased the refuse lots. Such was his notoriety in this, that when any inferior lot was offered, it was often remarked, “Oh, that's a lot for Bishopp." Such an accumulation of the veriest rubbish had he obtained, that the once fine and spacious rooms of his house are filled with it; the very poor were the only customers he had to purchase, so that his stock greatly increased. His manners were mild, his wit ready,
and his temper remarkably good, which was often put to the test by rude jests and remarks on his pecu-. liarities, which he always turned on his assailants with temper and adroitness. A meddler in other men's matters once said to him, as he was passing with a waggon load of (what he called) goods,—"Why, Bishopp, you will buy up all the rubbish in the country." Without stopping, he humourously replied, "Not all! my friend, I shall never bid for you." He died intestate, which will produce a distribution of property, from which the gentlemen of the law probably will not be excluded. He was never married, but had an illegitimate son, for whom he made no provision.
ther, was little calculated to follow his example; but instead of accumu lating his property, by his benevolence, which was always prone to assist the poor, and mitigate the general wants of suffering humanity, and by the encouragement he afforded, in particular, to those of his own profession, he was soon reduced to the necessity of calling on his brother for assistance; whereupon his brother replied, "Foreseeing the re"sult of all your literary pursuits, I have laid aside eight hundred ducats for your funeral expenses, when it may please God to call you unto his good keeping, that you should not disgrace the family name, in being buried by the parish ;" to which the Abbé Fosadoni replied, "Send me half that sum now while I am living, and at my death I will give you a receipt in full of all demands, for value received."
In a late lecture delivered by Dr. Tweedie on contagious fever, he states that the exhalation from the human body, even in a state of health, when several persons are crowded together in small or illventilated apartments, is quite sufficient to originate typhous fever; and that certain districts of the metropolis are never free from fever, owing to the crowded habitations, and wrethedness and filth of the inhabitants. The doctor justly observes, that "while governments are busily engaged in legislative enactments for supplying the wants of the poor, it is surely an object of national import ance to guard against the risk of pestilence, by insisting on the local authorities adopting a more rigid system of police, and enacting some regulations with the view of preventing, as far as possible, danger from this source."
THE TWO BROTHERS FOSADONI.
The writer knew these brothers at Venice. The Abbé was a man of great literary knowledge, and a distinguished poet. On their father's death they divided between them the patrimonial property. One entered into commercial speculations, and thereby very much increased his funds; the Abbé, of a far more generous disposition than his bro
NUTRIMENT FROM WOODY FIBRE.
It appears from the valuable researches which Dr. Prout is now pursuing in his "Analysis of Organic Substances," that the ligneous fibre of plants is capable of becoming a substitute for grain, for human food, in periods of scarcity, by undergoing the following process:-A given quantity of wood fibre, in shreds or shavings, being well macerated in boiling water, in order to deprive it of the resinous and extractive matter, is to be well dried in an oven, and subsequently ground or reduced to an impalpable powder, having the appearance of brown flour or meal. With a certain portion of leaven this flour may be fermented, and formed into a tenacious paste; and, when well baked, is not inferior in quality to ordinary wheaten bread from undressed meal. A tolerable good variety of starch may also be obtained by boiling wood-flour in water, till the liquid acquires the form of jelly, when cooled. In fact, this gelatinous substance, vi feculæ, constitutes the nutritive qualities of the preparations of all vegetable substances for human food.
The sun is flinging on waters glancing
[VOL. 9, N. $.
The birds are singing, and branches dancing,
Come, let us rush in the maze of boughs,
And the forwardest lass shall be crown'd our Queen.
The youth, the smile, the music of the year
THE games of May-day are the most natural and delightful of all the ancient pastimes. It is "no holiday dependent on the rubric, or the musty fables of monks or saints; -it is a jubilee of nature's own appointing, when the earth, dressing herself up in flowers and green garlands, calls aloud to her children to come out into the fields, and participate in her merry-making." The sports of the day were formerly shared by all ranks of people; and Stow informs us, that Henry VIII. and his beauteous queen used to rise with the sun on May morning, to partake of May-day sports, and afterwards diverted themselves with shooting birds in the woods, and in rustic festivity consumed the evening. Shakspeare says, it was impossible to make the people sleep on May-eve, and that they rose early to observe the rite of May.
In London, the May-game pageants were supported with great 11 ATHENEUM, VOL. 9, 2d series.
spirit; the citizens used to sally out in the morning a Maying, and return with the spoils of the fields and woods, accompanied with archers, morris-dancers, and other shows. Every parish, and sometimes two, used to join, and have their Maypole; one was erected in the middle of the street, before the church of St. Andrew Undershaft, of such height, that it over-topped the steeple; and hence it was that the parish, which was originally called St. Andrew only, acquired the addition of Un dershaft. lord and lady of the May were chosen to preside over the sports :—
"The May-pole is up,
Whose hands did compose
"One can readily imagine," says Mr. Irving, "what a gay scene it must have been in jolly old London,
One "evil May-day," however, occurred, and never again did Maymorning come wreathed to the citizens in its usual smiles. In consequence of an insurrection that broke out in London on May-eve, 1517, the sports of May-day were long suspended; nor were they ever after more than partially resumed. The "great shaft of Cornhill" was not once erected after that event; and thirty-two years later was broken in pieces, at the instigation of a fanatic priest, who insisted that the inhabitants had made an idol of it, by sainting it along with the church.
Without being bigoted admirers of the rough and riotous sports of antiquity, one cannot help regretting that the innocent and fanciful festival of May-day has fallen into disuse, In Scotland, Wales, Ireland, and, indeed, most countries, some traces of Mayday customs still prevail; but as to Jack in the Green, it is too great a burlesque of the old pageant to be here tolerated.
But although the festivities with which our ancestors hailed the opening of this month have sunk into neglect, Nature has not forsaken her festivities. She still scatters flowers, and revels in dews; she still loves her leafy garniture, and the burst of unoppressive sunshine; for, though we moderns may abandon the customs of our forefathers, and may even deny to May those joyous attributes with which they delighted to invest her; though we complain of cold winds, dull days, and frosty nights, cutting down flower and leaf, and have them too, yet is May a gladsome month withal. Vegetation has made a proud progress; it has become deep, lavish, luxuriating, and nothing can be more delightful than the tender green of the young leaves. Primroses still scatter their millions of pale stars over shady banks, and among the mossy roots of hazels; and, once more, amid the thicklyspringing verdure of the meadow, we hail the spotted and golden cowslips.
Towards the close of the month, the mind, which has been continually led onwards by the expansion of days, leaves, and flowers, seems to repose on the fulness of nature. Every thing is clothed. The Spring actually seems past. We are surrounded by all that beauty, sunshine, and melody, which mingle in our ideas of summer. Butterflies take their wavering flight from flower to flower, and dragonflies on the banks of rivers. Cattle, fed to satiety, repose in meadows golden with crowfoot; and sheep-washing is begun in many places. The mowing-grass presents a mosaic of the most gorgeous and inimitable hues, or is white with waving umbels. A passing gale awakens a scene of lively animation. The massy foliage of trees swings heavily; the boughs of the hawthorn wave with all their loads of fragrant bloom, and the snowy, umbelliferous plants toss on the lea like foam on a stormy ocean.
Cottage gardens are now perfect paradises; and, after gazing on their sunny quietude, their lilacs, peonies,