Imágenes de páginas


(From Scientific Amusement s.") It is well known that the female bee is the queen of the hive, and that the fate of the whole swarm depends, in some measure, upon her alone. The distinguishing characters of this mother-bee


that she has very short wings. It is difficult for her to fly, and therefore she seldom goes abroad, except when she quits the hive for a new colony. On that occasion, the bees, like faithful subjects, follow her to whatever place she may have chosen; and for this reason, if a person can get possession of the queen-bee, he is sure of being able to direct the swarm at his pleasure.

In that case, nothing is necessary but to confine her by means of a hair, or a very fine thread of silk, made gently fast around her corslet; the bees, attentive to all her actions, will surround her, go backwards and forwards, stop and seem obedient to the will of him who commands the mother-bee, by merely following the movements of their

queen. This was the charm, or rather the secret, by which MR. WILDMAN, who had studied the instinct of bees, and who thus took advantage of their attachment for their queen, was able to make a swarm pass from one hive to another at pleasure. Having full confidence in the success of his experiments, he presented himself one day to the Society of Arts, with three swarms of bees which he brought along with him, partly on his face and shoulders, and partly in his pockets. He placed the hives to which these swarms belonged in an outer apartment, and on blowing a whistle they all immediately quitted him, and returned to their hives; but on blowing his whistle a second time, they returned to occupy their former place on the person, and in the pockets, of their master. This exercise was repeated several times, to the great astonishment of the Society, and without any of the spectators being injured.

These astonishing experiments, the secret cause of which we have explained, were repeated some years ago, with equal success, before the Academy of Sci

[blocks in formation]

ences at Paris, by MR. WILDMAN, who explained to the French Academicians the theory and practice of his wonderful art.



(From Curiosities for the Ingenious.") The inhabitants of St. Lucie have lately discovered a most singular plant. In a cavern of that isle, near the

sea, is a large basin, from twelve to fifteen feet deep, the water of which is very brackish, and the bottom composed of rocks. From these, at all times, proceed certain substances, which present, at first sight, beautiful flowers of a bright shining colour, and pretty nearly resembling our marigolds, only that their tint is more lively. These seeming flowers, on the of a hand or instrument, retire, like a snail, out of sight. On examining their substance closely, there appear, in the middle of the disk, four brown filaments, resembling spiders' legs, which move round a kind of petals with a pretty brisk and spontaneous motion.

These legs have pincers to seize their prey ; and, upon seizing it, the yellow petals immediately close, so that it cannot escape.

Under this exterior of a flower is a brown stalk, of the bigness of a raven's quill, and which appears to be the body of some animal. It is probable that this strange creature lives on the spawn of fish, and on the marine insects thrown by the sea into the basin.

JUVENILE OBITUARY. 1. Died, on Saturday, Feb. 17, 1821, aged nineteen, John BARWISE, of Seaton Iron-Works, near Workington. About Easter, 1820, through the instrumentality of his father's affectionate admonition and advice, he was awakened to a sense of his sin and danger, as a transgressor of the holy law of God. He did not at. tempt to stifle these convictions, as too many young persons do, by rushing into vain amusements; but was encouraged by his parents to cherish the sacred though painful impressions made upon his mind, and to seek

that sense of divine forgiveness, and gracious change of heart, which are so freely promised to every penitent believer in Jesus Christ.

He began to attend a class-meeting, and engaged earnestly in the pursuit of his soul's salvation. Soon the precious promises of our Lord were verified in his behalf : “ I love them that love me, and they who seek me early shall find me.” 66 Yé shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.” While he was in secret prayer, in the bowels of the earth, where he had been labouring as a coal. miner, GoDspoke peace” to his soul, and filled him with all peace and joy through believing on Christ. From that time he was found running with cheerful alacrity in the paths of holy obedience towards God, of filial reverence and affection to his parents, of brotherly kindness to his relatives and fellow-workmen, and of charity and benevolence to all men, but especially to the household of faith. He was diligent in reading and hearing the word of God, and in attending the meetings of his class; and it was evident that he grew in wisdom and knowledge, in

grace and in love; seeking for the entire destruction of the carnal mind, and following after universal holiness of heart and life. He delighted much in the perusal of his Bible and of his Hymn-book. The sixty-second chapter of Isaiah was a portion of sacred writ of which he was particularly fond, and on which he often meditated. That charming hymn which begins thus,

“Happy the souls to Jesus join'd,” was a peculiar favourite with him; and frequently, on returning from his daily labour, did he salute the humble paternal mansion by singing that beautiful


“ The Church triumphant in thy love,

Their mighty joys we know;
They sing the LAMB in hymns above,

And we in hymns below." He was happy to hear of the extension of Christ's kingdom in the world by the preaching of the Gospel,



and by Missionary and Bible Societies. Soon after he became serious, he was presented regularly, by a friend, with the “Monthly Extracts of Correspondence with the British and Foreign Bible Society :

:' which he perused with avidity, and communicated, with evident pleasure, to his domestic circle and neighbours. With exemplary filial piety and affection, he placed all his earnings in the hands of his mother, for the general benefit of the family, without ever stipulating for any personal disbursements; but he would, now and then, solicit the favour of a shilling, in order, as he with peculiar modesty confessed, to relieve thé misfortunes of a distressed family. And when his aged father met with a serious accident in the coalmines, he soothed his afflicted parents by all means in his power; declaring that his father should never want, while he was able to work. “We can take any thing,' said he to his mother, “if we can only procure something comfortable for my father.”

On the morning of his lamented death, he rose about two o'clock, being solicitous to finish his work early on that day; and spent at least twenty minutes

in secret prayer.

“Thus arm'd with peace, and love, and power divine,

The world he enters where his duty calls ;
These heaven-born graces sweetly all combine

To shield his soul, whate'er of ill befalls." And well it was for him, that he was armed in panoply divine.

“How many fall as suddennot as safe !" While pursuing his laborious employment, an enormous mass of coal unexpectedly fell down, near the place where he was working, and he was found lifeless ! Thus was this beloved youth, the hope and prop of his aged parents, “in a moment, in the twinkling of m eye, w cut off in the midst of health and activity, and carried home a lifeless corpse. “Be ye also ready; for in such an hour as ye think not, the Son of MAN cometlı."

R. DICKINSON. 2. Died, MARIA BROTHERS, Feb. 18, 1821, aged 23. She was admitted into the Methodist Sunday School at Dursley, upwards of sixteen years ago. While she was a scholar, her conduct was remarkably steady; and it is not recollected that she ever disobeyed her teachers, or gave them occasion to reprove her for any impropriety of conduct., Although moral in her deportment, she continued a stranger to the converting grace of God, till about three years before her death. It is true, she experienced many convictions from the SPIRIT OF God, and formed many resolutions to devote herself to him; but these resolutions being made only in her own strength, the grand Adversary of souls easily succeeded, when he suggested, “ It is time enough yet to be religious :” and she neglected the welfare of her soul from day to day. But about the period above-mentioned, several of the sensor girls in the school were brought under a concern for salvation ; among whom she was one.

They used to meet with a female teacher one evening in the week, for the purpose of imploring the mercy of God, and helping each other in the best things. Maria now began to seek the LORD with great earnestness, being sensible that without his mercy she must everlastingly perish. She had many times before said her prayers, but now it could be truly said of her, “ Behold, she prayeth.In order to promote her spiritual interests, she gladly united herself to those who had more ex. perience in divine things, and were therefore able to instruct her in the great concerns of eternity. And the friends of religion had never any cause to blush, nor the enemies of truth to triumph, on her account, her life and conversation being consistent with her profession. Foolish levity of spirit, that bane of youthful piety, was particularly avoided by her. When admitted as a teacher in the Sunday School, she discharged the duties of that office with conscientious punctuality; and was always early and regular in her attendance, unless prevented by attention to the concerns of the family at home. She said, on her deathbed, my soul be saved, it will be owing to my having been in the Sunday-School.” The Bible was her daily companion; it was the first thing to which

66 If

« AnteriorContinuar »