« PoprzedniaDalej »
the income tax should be compelled to take their wives and children to the sea-side for the autumn months. It should have his earliest attention. In answer to another speaker, he considered that assembly rooms should be maintained in every town by the public purse.
Mrs. Poser-What foreign policy will you advocate ?
SIR CHARLES would advocate peace with France, at all hazards, that nothing might endanger the immediate importation of Parisian fashions. (Cheers and bouquets.)
A YOUNG LADY—About the army ?
Sir CHARLES-I am for keeping up a standing army, to consist entirely of regiments of horse guards, composed exclusively of officers. (Immense sensation.)
Mrs. Poser-I should like to hear your intentions as to the tobacco duties.
SIR CHARLES--To prohibit the importation and cultivation of that objectionable plant altogether, so that there may be no more smoking.
A show of parasols was demanded, and Sir Charles Darling was declared duly elected.
LIFE IN THE SICK ROOM. Of all the know-nothing persons in this world, commend us to the man who has never known a day's illness: he is a mortal dunce ; one who has lost the greatest lesson in life; who has skipped the finest lecture in that great school of humanity, the sick chamber. Let him be versed in mathematics, profound in metaphysics, a ripe scholar in the classics, a bachelor of arts, or even a doctor in divinity, yet he is as one of those gentlemen, whose education has been neglected. For all his college acquirements, how inferior is he in wholesome knowledge to the mortal who has had but a quarter's gout, or a half year of ague; how infinitely below the fellow creature who has been soundly taught his tic douloureux, thoroughly grounded in the rheumatics, and deeply red in the scarlet fever! And yet, what is more common than to hear a great hulking florid fellow, bragging of an ignorance, that he shares in common with the pig, and the bullock, the generality of which die, probably, without ever having experienced a day's indisposition ? To such a monster of health, the volume before me, (Miss Martineau's Life in the Sick Room,) will be a sealed book, for how can he appreciate its allusions to physical sufferings, whose bodily annoy. ance has never reached beyond a slight tickling of the epidermis, or the tingling of a foot gone to sleep? How should he, who has sailed through life with a clean bill of health, be able to sympathize with the feelings, or the quiet sayings and doings of an invalid, condemned a life-long quarantine in his chamber ? What should he know of life in the sick room ? As little as our paralytic grandmother knows of life in London.
THE DEATHWATCH. The deathwatch, or ptinus, is an instance of insect-hearing. It makes a ticking noise, by beating its head with great force against what it stands on. Derham, the naturalist, kept two in a box for three weeks, and found that by imitating their sound, which is done by beating with the point of a pin, or the nail, on the table, the insect would answer him, by repeating its own tick, as often as he pleased.
LIKING AND DISLIKING.
How it is that instinct still
At its own capricious will!
Our impressions first are led
Oft before a word is said !
Bright eyes turn our feelings cold ?
All that glitters is not gold ?
But a power we cannot shun,
Ere acquaintance hath begun!
Which protects us,—and controls
By some sympathy of souls ?
Or some freak, or fault of chance,
Limits to a single glance ?
Though the sky no shadow flings;
Of unseen-unutter'd things !
No one show sufficient cause
Have their own instinctive laws?
POETIC. An editor, in speaking of a dandy's dickey, says—" It was scented and torn like a south wind after passing through a fence made of thorn bushes.”
“Why what in the world has happened to Mr. 's arm ?" “ Oh! nothing at all," was the reply ; "he only wears it in a sling because he's too lazy to swing it !”
ASIA. As Asia exceeds Europe and Africa in the extent of its territories, it is also superior to them in the serenity of its air, the fertility of its soil, the deliciousness of its fruits; the fragrancy and balsamic quality of its plants, spices, and gums; the salubrity of its drugs ; the quantity, variety, beauty, and value of its gums; the richness of its metals, and the fineness of its silks and cottons. It was in Asia, according to the sacred records, that the allwise Creator planted the Garden of Eden, in which He formed the first man and first woman, from whom the race of mankind was to spring. Asia became again the nursery of the world after the deluge, whence the descendants of Noah dispersed their various colonies into all the other parts of the globe. It was in Asia that God placed his own favourite people. the Hebrews, whom he enlightened by revelations delivered by the prophets, and to whom he
gave the oracles of truth. It was here that the great and merciful work of our redemption was accomplished by His divine son; and it was from hence that the light of his glorious gospel was carried with amazing rapidity into all the known nations, by His disciples and followers. Here the first Christian churches were founded, and the Christian faith miraculously prophesied and watered with the blood of innumerable martyrs. It was in Asia the first edifices were reared, and the first empires founded, while the other parts of the globe were inhabited by other wild animals. On all these accounts, this quarter claims a superiority over the rest; but it must be owned, that a great change hath happened in that part of it called Turkey, which hath lost much of its ancient splendour, and from the most populated and best cultivated spot in Asia is become a wild and uncultivated desert. The other parts of Asia continue much in their former condition, the soil being as remarkable for its fertility, as most of the inbabitants for their indolence, effeminacy, and luxury. This effeminacy is chiefly owing to the warmth of the climate, though in some measure heightened by custom and education; and the symptoms of it are more or less visible, as the several nations are seated nearer to, or farther from, the north. Hence the Tartars, who live near the same latitude with us, are as brave, hardy, strong, and vigorous, as any European nation. What is wanting in the robust frame of their bodies, among the Chinese, Mogul Indians, and all the inhabitants of the more southern regions, is in a great measure made up to them by the vivacity of their minds, and ingenuity in various kinds of workmanship, which our most skilful mechanics have in vain endeavoured to imitate.
This vast extent of territory was successively governed in ancient times by the Assyrians, the Medes, the Persians, and the Greeks; but in the iminense regions of India and China were little known to Alexander or the conquerors of the ancient world. Upon the decline of those empires, great part of Asia submitted to the Roman
arms, and afterwards in the middle ages, the successors of Mahomet, or as they were usually called, Saracens, founded in Asia, in Africa, and in Europe, a more extensive empire than that of Cyrus, Alexander, or even the Roman, when in its height and power. The Saracen greatness ended with the death of Tamerlane, and the Turks, conquerors on every side, took possession of the middle regions of Asia, which they still enjoy. Besides the countries possessed by the Turks and Russians, Asia contains, at present, three powerful empires, the Chinese, the Mogul, and the Persian, upon which the lesser kingdoms and sovereignties of Asia generally depend. The prevailing form of government, in this division of the globe, is absolute monarchy. If any of them can be said to enjoy some share of liberty, it is the wandering tribes, as the Tartars and Arabs. Many of these Asiatic nations, when the Dutch came among them, could not conceive how it was possible for any people to live under any other form of government than that of a despotic monarchy. Turkey, Arabia, Persia, part of Tartary, and part of India, prosess Mahometism. The Persian and Indian Mahometans are of the sect of Hali, and the others that of Omar; but both own Mahomet for their law-giver, and the Koran for their rule of faith and life. In the other parts of Tartary, India, China, Japan, and the Asiatic Islands, they are generally heathens and idolaters. Jews are to be found every where in Asia. Christianity though planted here with wonderful rapidity, by the apostles and primitive fathers, suffered an almost total eclipse by the conquests of the Saracens, and afterwards of the Turks. Incredible, indeed, have been the hazards, perils, and sufferings of Popish missionaries, to propagate their doctrines in the most distant regions, and amongst the grossest idolaters, but their labours have hitherto failed of success, owing, in a great measure, to the avarice and profligacy of the Europeans, who resort thither in search of wealth and dominion. The principal languages spoken in Asia are, the modern Greek, the Turkish, the Russian, the Tartarian, the Persian, the Arabic, the Malayan, the Chinese, and the Japanesse. The European languages are also spoken upon the coasts of India and China. Asia is bounded by the Frozen Ocean on the north, on the west it is separated from Africa by the Red Sea, and from Europe by the Levant or Mediterranean, the Archipelago, the Hellespont, the Sea of Marmora, the Bosphorus, the Black Sea, the river Don, and a line drawn froin it to the river Tobol, and from thence to the river Oby, which falls into the Frozen Ocean. On the east it is bounded by the Pacific Ocean or South Sea, which separates it from America; and on the south, by the Indian Ocean ; so that it is almost surrounded by sea.
LORD LYNDHURST is, perhaps, the only living British subject, who personally remembers Washington, at Mount Vernon. His lordship was born a colonist in Boston.
THE PINEAPPLE. Ten years ago, when the progress of horticulture had been so successful as to place the pineapple on all the tables of the rich, it
grew for them only; for the price of fifteen shillings, or even a guinea, per pound, was not likely to command many purchasers among the masses, and unless the fruit weighed at least a pound and a hall, your money was pretty much thrown away, and the delicious flavour unknown. Thanks to the rapidity of steam communication and to free. trade, the poorest among us are now made familiar with this and many other tropical fruits, and the pineapple, the melon, and the banana, are as much within our reach as the commonest productions of our own country. The pineapple is called, by the Spaniards and French,
ananas,” from «
nana," its common name in the Brazils; and it has received its English name from the resemblance the fruit bears to the cones of some species of pine tree. The pineapple was introduced into England as a botanical plant, in the year 1690, by Mr. Bentinck, afterwards Earl of Portland. In the West Indies, the pineapple is not cut in slices, except when eaten with sugar and wine, but the pips are torn out with a fork, to be sucked in the same manner as the orange.
And nature's ready pencil paints the flowers. May-day, though still observed as a rural festival, has often little pleasure to bestow, but that arising from the name. very elegant poem, entitled The Tears of Old May-day, this newer rival is thus described :
No wonder, man, that Nature's bashful face
And opening charms her rude embraces fear;
The sickly daughter of th' unripen'd year?
With hollow smiles proclaiming treach'rous peace;
The blast that riots on the Spring's increase. The hedges are rich in fragrance from the snowy blossoms of the hawthorn; and the orchards display their highest beauty in the delicate blush of the apple blossoms :
From the moist meadow to the wither'd hill,