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VOL. 2.] Nature's Diary for March.-Singing Birds.
471 What instinct is it that can induce a lit- The instinctive attachment, indeed, of tle defenceless bird to venture over'vast the female skylark to her offspring, often tracts of land and sea ? If it be said, that precedes the period when she is capable by their high ascents into the air, they of being a mother. •A young hen bird,' can see across the seas; yet what shall says Buffon, was brought to me in the instruct or persuade them, that another month of May, which was not able to laod is most proper for their purpose feed without assistance. I caused her to than this? That Great Britain, for instance be educated; and she was bardly fledged should afford them better accommoda- when I received from another place a tions, than Egypt,the Canaries,Spain, or nest of three or four callow skylarks. To any of the other intermediate countries? these strangers she contracted a strong
What lover of nature's music, but is liking; she attended them night and day, charmed with the various notes and mo- though nearly as old as herself, cherishdulations of our English singing birds ? ed them beneath her wings, and fed them The sweetness of the throstle ;-the with her bill. Nothing could interrupt cheerfulness of the sky lark;—the mel- her tender offices. If the objects of her lowness of the thrush, building near the regard were torn from her, she flew back misletoe ;-the imitative talent of the to them as soon as she was liberated, bull-finch ;-the varied and familiar lan- and disdained to think of effecting her guage of the red-breast, endeared to us, own escape, which she had frequent opfrom our youth, by so many agreeable portunities of doing, while they remained associations ;-the wood-lark, priding in confinement. Her affection seeined to herself in being little inferior to the night- deprive her of every concern for self preiogale, and making her home in lair- servation ; she neglected food and driok, ground, under large tufts of grass to and though now supplied the same as shelter her from the cold ;--the vivacity her adopted offspring, she expired at last, of the wren, forming her nest with dry quite worn out with maternal solicitude. leaves and moss, among hedges and None of the young ones long survived sbrubs encircled with ivy ;-the solemn her, but died one after another; so escry of the owl; and the soft oote of the sential were her cares, which were equally linnet, building upon heaths with roots, tender and judicious to their preservation. and among thoros with moss, and sub- The melody of the lark continues dur. ject to the disorder of melancholy !-- ing the whole of the summer. It is Not one of these birds breathes a single chiefly, however, in the moroing and evenote, that is not listened to with pleasure; ning that its strains are heard ; and as it
Happy commoners! chaunts its mellow notes on the wing, it That haunt in woods, in meads, in flowery gardens, is the peculiar favourite of every person Rifle the sweets and taste the choicest fruits,
me who has taste to relish the beauties of Yet scorn to ask the lordly owner's leave.--Rowe.
nature, at the most tranquil season of the Ainong the numerous songters of this
ons day, particularly at dawn, when he month we must not omit to name the
His trembling--thrilling ecstasy ;
And lessening from the dazzled sight, and bearing up its hymn to heaveo. Melts into air and liquid light.
The skylark coin only forms its nest be- The Jark mounts alınost perpendicutween two clods of earth, and lines it larly, and by successive springs, into the with dried grass and roots. In this she air, where it frequently hovers over its lays four or five eggs, and her period of nest, and the objects of its dearest affecincubation is about a fortnight, which of- tions, at a vast height, without once losfice she generally performs twice a year, ing sight of them. Its descent is in an Her maternal affection is extremely inte- oblique direction, unless when it is alarmresting, both to the eye and to the heart. ed or attracted by its inate, when it drops When her young are callow, she may be to the earth like a stone. seen fluttering over their heads, directing
So the sweet lark, high poised in air, their motions, anticipating their wants,
Shuts close his pinions to his breast, and guarding thein against the approach
If chance his mate's shrill call he huar, of danger.
And drops at once into her nest.
When it begins to rise, its notes are mighty has not formed any race of befeeble and interrupted; but they gradu- ings whatever, without giving to them as ally swell, as it ascends, to their full tone, important destination, he would not proand delight every ear that is enamoured bably be so anxious for their destruction, of nature,
It has been satisfactorily ascertained that For nearly three months before Christ- a single pair of sparrows, while their mas, larks lose their voice, begin to as- young ones are in the nest, destroy on an semble in flocks, grow fat, and are taken average above three thousand caterpillars in prodigious numbers by the bird-catch- every week! At this rate, if all the spe ers. As many as four thousand dozen cies of small birds were to be extirpated, have been caught in the vicinity of Dun- what would then become of the crops ? stable alone, between September and Fe- Frogs, enlivened by the warmth of bruary; nor are they less an object of spring, rise from the bottom of ponds and pursuit in other districts; so that it is ditches, where they have lain torpid durjustly a matter of wonder that the spe. ing the winter. The sinelt (salmo eper. cies should still remain without apparent bunus) begins to ascend rivers to spawo, diminution. In Germany, such quanti- when they are taken in great abundance. ties of larks are caught that they are sub- On the 20th, the vernal equinos takes jected to an excise daty, which, accord- place. All Nature feels her renovating ing to Keysler, produces to the city of sway, and seems to rejoice at the retreat Leipsic, without noticing other places, of winter. The sallow (sali:c ) now enno less a sum than 900l. sterling a year. livens the hedges; the aspen (populus In France, larks form a common dish, at tremula), and the alder ( alnus betula), this time, at almost every table.
have their flowers full blown; the laurus. In this month, trouts begin to rise ; tinus (viburnum tinus) and the bay blood-worms appear in the water; black (laurus nobilis) begin to open their ants (formica nigra) are observed; the leaves. The equinoctial gales are uso. blackbird and the turkey (meleagris gal- ally most felt, both by sea and land, a. lopuvo) lay; and house pigeons sit. The bout this time. bat (vespertilio) is seen Aitting about, Our gardens begin now to assume and the viper unooils itself from its win- somewhat of a cheerful appearance. ter sleep. The wheatear (sylvia anan- Crocuses, exhibiting a rich mixture of the), or English ortolan, again pays its yellow and purple, ornament the borders; anaual visit, leaving England in Septem- mezereon is in all its beauty; the little ber. They are found in great numbers flowers with silver crest and golden about East Bourne, in Sussex, more than eye,' the daisies, are scattered over dry eighteen hundred dozen being annually pastures; and the pilewort, (ranunculus taken in this neighbourhood. 'They are ficaria) is seen on the moist banks of usually sold at six pence a dozen. ditches. The primrose too (primula
In many places, a great havoc is made, veris) peeps from beneath the hedge. in this month, among sparrows and other A thousand bills are busy now; the skies small birds by the farmer; and rewards Are winnowed by a thousand fluttering wings, are sometimes offered for their destruc While all the feathered race their annual rites tion. How ignorant are the generality
Ardent begin, and choose where best to build
With more than human skill; some cautious seek of mankind of their own good! This or
Sequestered spots, while some more confident
S der includes no fewer than forty different Scarce ask a covert. Wiser, these elude kinds of bird3 which do not eat å single The foes that prey upon their several kinds; grain of corn, but which, in the course of
Those to the hedge repair with velvet down the spring and summer, devour millions
Of budding sallows, beautifully white,
The cavern-loving wren sequestered seeks of insects that would otherwise prove in The verdant shelter of the hollow stump, finitely more injurious to the fariner, than And with congenial moss, harmless deceit, all the sparrows that haunt his fields,
Constructs a safe abode. On topmost boughs were they ten times more numerous than
The glossy raven, and the hoarse-voiced erov,
Rocked by the storm, erect their airy nests. they are. And even with respect to The ousel, lone frequenter of the grove sparrows, which are certainly, in some of fragrant pines, in solemn depth of shade measure, injurious to the crops, were the
Finds rest; or 'mid the holly's shining leaves, farmer seriously to reflect that the Al
A simple bush the piping thrush contents,
Trills from his spotted throat a powerful strain, Hebrides, and other isles of North Britain, And scorns the humbler quire. The lark too asks
to make their nests, and lay their eggs. A lowly dwelling, hid beneath a turt, Or hollow, trodden by the sinking hoof;
We shall conclude with a beautiful Songster of heaven! who to the sun such lays · Elegy on the approach of Spring,' by Pours forth, as earth ne'er owns. Within the hedge John Scott. of Amwell. The sparrow lays her sky-stained eggs. The barn
Stern Winter hence with all his train removes, Secret the linnet seeks the tangled copse :
And cheerful skies and limpid streams are seen;
Thick-sprouting foliage decorates the groves;
Reviving herbage clothes the fields with green. The thievish pie in twofold colours clad,
Yet lovelier scenes th'approaching months prepare; Roofs o'er her curious nest with firm-wreathed twips. Kind Spring's full bounty soon will be displayed ; And sidelong forms her cautious door ; she dreads The smile of beauty every vale shall wear ; The taloned kite, or pouncing howk ; savage
The voice of song enliven every shade.
O Fancy, paint not coming days too fair!
Oft for the pro
Oft for the prospects sprightly May should yield, The leaves of honey suckles are now Rain-pouring clouds have darkened all the air, nearly expanded ; in our gardens, the Or snows untimely whitened o'er the field : buds of the cherry-tree (prunus cerasus). But should kind Spring her wonted bounty show'r,
The smile of beauty, and the voice of song ; the peach (amygdalus persica), the nec- if gloomy thought the human mind o'erpow'r, tarine, the apricot, and the almond (pru Ev'n vernal hours glide unenjoyed along. nus armeniaca), are fully opened in this I shun the scenes where maddening passion raves, month. The buds of the hawthorn Where Pride and Folly high dominion hold, (cratægus oxycantha) and of the larch- And unrelenting Avarice drives her slaves tree (pinus larir) begin to open ; and,
O'er prostrate Virtue in pursuit of gold.
The grassy lane, the wood-surrounded field, the tansy (tanacetum vulgare) emerges
The rude stone fence with fragrant wall-flowers gay, out of the ground; the daffodil (pseudo- The clay-built cot, to me more pleasure yield narcissus) in moist thickets, the rush Than all the pomp imperial domes display: Cuncus pilosus), and the spurge laurel And yet ev'n here, amid these secret shades, ( daphne laureola). found in woods are These simple scenes of unreproved delight,
Afliction's iron hand my breast invades, now in bloom. The common whitlow And Death's dread dart is ever in my sight. grass (draba verna) on old walls; the While genial suns to genial showers sacceed, yellow Alpine whitlow grass (draba ai- (The air all mildness, and the earth all bloom); zoides) on maritime rocks; and the While herds and flocks range sportive o'er the mead, mountain pepperwort(lepidum petræum) Crop the sweet herb, and snuff the rich perfume ; among limestone rocks. Aower in March. Owhy alone to hapless man denied
To taste the bliss inferior beings boast?
ula) Shes why this fate, that fear and pain divide its delicious perfumes in this month. His few short hours on earth's delightful coast ?
Though the striped tulip, and the blushing rose, Ah cease-no more of Providence complain!
'Tis sense of guilt that wakes the mind to woe, The full carnation, and the lily tall,
Gives force to fear, adds energy to pain,
And palls each jo; by Heaven indulged below:
Why else the smiling infant-train so blessed, of rustics tread not; yet that lavish band,
Ere ill propension ripens into sin,
Ere wild desire inflames the youthful breast,
And dear-bought knowledge ends the peace within? Within the limits of the rich man's wall."
As to the bleating tenants of the field, The gapnets, or Soland geese (pelica. As to the sportive warblers on the trees, nus bassanus), resort in March to the
To them their joys sincere the seasons yield,
And all their days and all their prospects please. . To
Such mine, when first, from London's crowded streets Wrapped round a Nosegay of Violets.
Roved my young steps to Surry's wood-crowned hills Dear object of my late and early prayer!
O'er new blown meads, that breathed a thousand sweets.
By shady coverts and by crystal rilis.
O happy hours, beyond recovery fied!
What share I now that can your loss repay,
While o'er my mind these gloons of thought are spread
And veil the light of life's meridian ray?
The long-lost joys of Eden to restore,
Where fear and pain and death shall be no more?
Yes, those there are who know a Saviour's love,
The long-lost joys of Eden can restore, And raise their views to happier seats above,
Where fear and pain and death shall be no more : These, grateful, share the gift of Nature's hand;
And in the varied scenes that round them shine (Minute and beautiful, or rude and grand),
Admire th' amazing workmanship divine. Blows not a floweret in th' enamelled vale,
Shines not a pebble where the rivulet strays,
Sports not an insect on the spicy pale,
But claims their wonder and excites their praise.
For them more lively hues the fields adorn;
To them more sweet the sweetest breath of Morn.
They pass serepe th' appointed hours that hoing The Day that wafts them to the realms on high,
The Day that centres in Eternal Spring.
JOANNA SOUTncott's FOLLOWERS. figures of our Saviour, so the miracles he per
formed were only types of the Shiloh they erFrom the Literary Panorama, Nov. 1817.
pect. I then found that the burning of the pig NHE following instance of horrible was, in other words, the burning and binding 1 superstition is almost incredible in of Satan, and intended the miracle in the 8th
of Luke, so that that morning their prophet these enlightened times; it is, however, had cast the evil spirit out of each of their well authenticated :
hearts, and it had entered the swine.--- Various
other absurdities were related to me, which it SACRIFICING A BLACK PIG.
would be only wasting time to mention : after “ Tuesday the 14th alt. about 100 persons, 18 hearing all they had to say, I endeavoured to of whom were women, calling themselves the point out their errors from Scripture, and to followers of Joanna Southcott, assembled in direct their attention to that Almighty Saviour, the wood at Forest hill, near Sydenham ; their whose is the only name given under Heaven purpose was, apparently, some act of religious by which men can be saved ; and pointed out worship, and the following account will give the danger I apprehended they were in. But you some idea of the infatuation of these poor they laughed at my fears, and with branches deluded people :-
in their hands, and bows of ribands on their On arriving at a spot suitable for their pur- breasts, returned towards London, triumphing pose, and having formed a circle, they began in their folly. They all consisted of poor work
ging and prayer. which they continued iog men, and the man they called their Propbfor a considerable time. They then drew from et, or the shadow of the Shiloh, was in appear. the bag a sinall live black pig, and having se- ance a discharged seaman. : “ J. ." cored its legs, the women divided into two companies, and each female gave the animal
From the Monthly Magazine, Oet. 1817. nine distinct blows on the head with a chopper. This done,the men proceeded to beat it
GOTHIC THEATRES. with poles, sticks, &c. till it was quite dead; Forsyth, in his Italian Tour thus crithey bound it with a strong iron chain, and ticises ihe opera-house at Caserta :having hoisted it up, they placed a tar barrel unterveath, and with the aid of furze, &c. “ The theatre is perhaps too splendid for they soon had a blazing fire. Having done its own exhibitions. Its form is the usual their utmost to burn the pig to ashes, they scat- hors tered the remains over their heads, and tramp
horse-shoe, encircled with grand alabas. led it under their feet. This was succeeded ter coluinns : but columns of the Greek again by singing and prayer. Upon tirst view. orders are conarell
W orders are generally too many for sepaing their brutal behaviour, I was induced to interrupt them ; but considering they were in rating such pigeon-holes as play-house an act of religious worship (although so con- boxes;-their shafts incommode the trary to humanity and reason), and remembering the religious liberty it is my privilege to
cooped spectators, and their capitals obenjoy, I deemed it right they should enjoy the struct his view. Would not the Gothic same. Being anxious, however, to know the enter more intimately into the minute dimeaning of the ceremony that had been performed, I addressed myself to one who seemed visions of a modern theatre! The Gotha principal speaker, but whose profession in ic excels in little details, it loves little life appeared to be that of a journeyman black- compartments. its long slender shefte om
ck; compartments; its long slender shafts are smith; I told bim I feared they were in great error,and expressed a wish that God would be finely formed to part off the boxes, its flat pleased to open their eyes to understand the arches to surmount them, its fan-tracery truth. I was immediately surrounded, and requested to state what I considered the truth, to face them; and on the grander parts, and where they erred. I begged first to have such as the stage-front, or the state-boxtheir explanation of what I bad secn; and was es, an artist might pile all the pinnacles informed they had copied from the Scriptures 1115 verses, which prove the truth of their doc- and enrichments of an old cathedral trines. “ The daughter of Zion" (as they call throne. A theatre, however, is the only Joanna) is gone to heaven, they said, till the
e never see coming of the Shiloh ; and as types and shadows were used under the Mosaic dispensation as Gothic applied.
VOL.2.) Antient Scotch Cooking
Vow of the Pheasant- The Golden Torques. 475.
From the New Montbly Magazine.
moors that belong to my lord, I ride for ANCIENT SCOTTISH CUSTOM. a week or perhaps a fortnight together Brantome, in his Vies des Hommes Il- without seeing house or harbour, or even lustres, relates that the Vidame de Char- fire, or any living creature, save the tres, wbile a prisoner of war in England beasts of the forest; then am I content during the reign of Edward III. obtained with food dressed in this manner, and I permission to visit the Highlands of Scot- should not relish it better out of an emland. After a grand hunting-match, in peror's kitchen.” Thus did these two ride which a great quantity of game had been on, talking and eating, till they reached killed, he saw these “Scotch savages" a valley in which was a very fair spring. devour part of their booty raw, without When Estonne saw it, he said to Clauany other preparation than putting the dius, “Let us drink here of this beverflesh between two pieces of wood, which age, which God bestows upon all men, they squeezed together with such violence and which I prefer to all the banquets in as to express all the blood, so that the England.". flesh was left quite dry. This they con
From the Monthly Magazine. sidered as a great dainty; and the Vic vow of the Pheasant. dame highly ingratiated himself with The pheasant and the peacock were. them, because he partook of their fare. considered as sacred birds among our In the old romance, Lu trés élégante Gothic ancestors; and in the age of chivHistoire du trés noble Roi Perceforest alry, when any solemn agreement was (Paris, 1531,) this practice is described made at table, it was customary to vow with great naiveté in the following epi- it over the pheasant. The lady of the sode, in which Estonne, a Scottish knight, house, or her daughter, carried round the who has killed a deer, addresses his com- dish to the chief guests, and each propanion, Claudius, in these words :- nounced over it his promise. At Lille, « Now, Sir, eat as I do."-"So I might, in 1453, as M. de St. Palaye informs us, if we had but a fire."-"By my brother's a nobleman induced his principal neighsoul,” cried Estonne, “I will cook for bours to vow over the pheasant a crusade you, after the fashion of my country, as against the Turks; however, it did not it befits a knight-errant.” Hereupon he take place. drew his sword, went up to a tree, cut off
THE GOLDEN TORQUES. a branch, which he split very deep, two Frequent mention is made in the feet at least; then placed a slice of the works of the most ancient and most celedeer in the cleft, took his horse's bridle, brated of the British bards, of the Torand bound the end of the branch so tight- ques, or golden ureath, worn round the Jy, that all the blood and juice spirted neck of their chieftains in the day of batout of the flesh, and it was left quite dry. tle, as ap ensign of authority, as well as He then took it and pulled off the skin, a badge of honour, and a mark of noble and the flesh looked as white as that of descent. Aneurin, in his epic poem on a capon. Upon this he said to Claudius: the unfortunate battle of Cattraeth, writ“Sir, I have cooked the flesh after the ten in the sixth century of the Christian manner of my country; you may dine era, describes the march of 363 British daintily upon it,and I will show you bow.” leaders to the field of battle, all ornaHe then strewed salt and pepper upon the mented with the golden torquesflesh, rubbed it, and cut it in two parts:
To Cattraeth's vale, in glitt'ring row, one he presented to Claudius, and began Twice two hundred warriors go; to eat so heartily of the other, that the Ev'ry warrior's manly neck, pepper flew out in clouds. When Clau
Chains of regal honours deck,
Wreath'd in many a golden link, dius observed with what an appetite he
From the golden cup they drink, &c. ate, he followed his example, and relished
Gray's Poems. his fare so well, that he said to Estonne, Lomarchus Senex, or Llywarch Hên, “ Upon my soul, I never ate meat pre- prince of the Cambrian Britons, in his pared in this fashion; but henceforward, elegies on the loss of his sons, and of his I shall never more turn out of my way to regal dignity, written about tbe year seek other cookery.”—“Sir," said Es- 560, asserts that he had four-and-twenty tonne, "when I am on the Scottish sons ornamented with the golden chuin,