« AnteriorContinuar »
who think that happiness is only to be found in the gay society of cities, and induce them to turn their eyes to the green fields and fragrant woods, and see how much that is pleasant and beautiful they leave
"To waste its sweetness on the desert air,"'
almost wholly unregarded.
An acquaintance with the country, and a love for its beauties and ever-varying scenes, are the foundation-stones of a just appreciation of painting, poetry, and music. We judge of the merits of a picture according to its resemblance to Nature; of poetry, by the emotions it produces, and the illustrations which it affords of all that is pleasing in earth, air, sea, or sky; of music, as it brings to our ears the sound of waters, the song of birds, or the rustling of the wind among trees and flowers;—to say nothing of those greater emotions of joy and sorrow, despair and hope, which it produces. Neither are these all: the quiet of country scenery is like a resting-place for the mind; there is a tranquillity that draws the thoughts from the busy world, and makes us conscious that we live for nobler ends than to accumulate wealth. Well did old John Evelyn exclaim, in one of his enthusiastic bursts of eloquence on woods, "Here then is the true Parnassus, Castalia and the Muses; and at every call in a grove of venerable oaks, methinks I hear the answer of a hundred old Druids, and the bards of our inspired ancestors. In a word, so charmed were poets with those natural shades, that they honoured temples with the names of groves. In walks and shades of trees poets have composed verses which have animated men to heroic and glorious actions. Here orators have made their panegyrics, historians their grave relations, and the profound philosophers have loved to pass their lives in repose and contemplation."
There are many beautiful scraps of poetry scattered over these pages, the selection of which has required considerable care. Some of them, it is hoped, will not be lost upon the reader, as they will serve to prove how much even Genius is indebted to Nature in
"Giving a local habitation and a name"
to its lofty imaginings.
Finally, the designs illustrating this volume are from the pencil of Mr. Edward Lambert, of whose talents the public have already had a specimen in the splendid print lately published, entitled "The Destruction Of Jerusalem." Many of them, independently of their merit as works of art, are faithful illustrations of customs and scenes which can only now be witnessed in a few remote places in the country.
Elliott's Row, Southwark,
Appearance of the Season.—Wind, sublime descriptions of, in Scripture.
Appearance of the Season.—March-many-weathers.—Rural Objects.—
Appearance of the Season.—Beauty of Spring A Party in the Fields.
—" The Voice of Spring."—Village-green.—Evening Scene Village de-