Imágenes de páginas

our business; but if, on the contrary, we sacrifice too much time in sleep, we fall into arrears to our several duties, and they so crowd upon us, that throughout the day we can never recover from our difficulties, but do every thing that is done in a hurried and indifferent manner.

But it is particularly important to rise early on the Sabbath-day; though too many, alas ! seem to make it their study how to shorten this holy day by com. mencing it later, and concluding it sooner, than any other. And we should not only begin the Sabbath early, but be careful to spend the whole of it in a becoming manner. Let the morning hours be appro. priated to private devotion. After that, the perusal of the sacred volume, and meditation on its contents, may fill up the remainder of the time, till the hour of divine service. The public worship of God ought never to be neglected. Carelessness as to the performance of this duty has been followed by the most alarming consequences; and to omit it, or to attend to it with apathy and indifference, is equally dangerous. To omit it, is to despise an ordinance appointed by God himself. To attend it with apathy, so as to be “Gospel-hardened,” indicates one of the most dreadful states of mind which can possibly be conceived.

Influenced by these views, I arose early in the morning; and after breakfast set out for the VillageChurch, which was situated at the distance of rather better than a mile. As I was yet too early for the time of service, I proceeded slowly along a lane, thickly shaded with overhanging boughs, until Í crossed a stile into the fields, through which lay the foot-path to the church. The morning was beautiful. The sun shone bright, and the waters of a murmuring brook, which glided down the meadows, sparkled brightly in the beam, and reflected with faithful ex. actness the deep azure, and the thin white clouds, of the serene canopy above. As I went leisurely down the meadows, the bells of the church began to ring; and at the sound, numerous small parties issued from their



habitations, and proceeded thither from various directions. My path in a short time ended in another secluded lane.

Before I had reached the stile at the bottom of the fields leading into it, I saw coming down the opposite meadows a line of children, perhaps about a hundred. Just as. I was crossing the stile, they were entering the same lane through a gate. I was much pleased with their neat appearance and healthy looks. I found on inquiry that they were, as I had supposed, Sunday-School children, and were going to church. As we went forward, I entered into conversation with their conductor respecting the school, which con learning from him that there would be no second service at church) I determined to attend in the af. ternoon. We soon arrived at the church, where I heard a most excellent discourse. My visit to the Sunday-school shall be particularly described in my

C. C.

next paper.


No. III.

AGESILAUS. AGESILAUS, King of Sparta, was the youngest son of ARCHIDAMUS, and succeeded to the throne after the death of his elder brother, Agis. As the crown of Sparta, was, by law, to descend to Agis, AGESILAUS had nothing to expect but a private station, and therefore received a common Lacedæmonian education; which, though hard in respect of diet, and full of laborious exercises, was well calculated to teach the youth obedience. Hence it was, that he accommodated himself with a better grace to his subjects, because, before he came to govern, he had learned to obey.

He was lame in one leg : but that defect was compensated by a constant vivacity and cheerfulness of manner, which made him agreeable even in old age. In his youth, he was remarked to have a spirit above his companions, an ambition to excel, which made him unwilling to sit down without the prize, and an impetuosity not easily conquered; yet was he equally remarkable for his gentleness, where it was necessary, to obey.

AGESILAUS had not been long seated upon the throne, before he was called out, in defence of his country, to take the field at the head of the Lace. dæmonian army. After a number of conquests, he was stayed in his warlike career by sickness; and the Spartans were defeated in every engagement which they undertook, until he again appeared at their head. In his eightieth year, he went to assist Tachos, King of Egypt; and on this occasion, the officers of that Monarch hastened to pay him their court; but they were much surprised when they beheld no pomp or grandeur of appearance, and saw only a little plain old man, in mean attire, seated upon the grass by the sea-side. AGESILAUS died on his return from Egypt, in the year 372, B. C., after a reign of thirty-six years. His remains were embalmed, and conveyed to Lacedæmon.

From among numerous anecdotes related of him, I have selected the following, as most likely to interest the juvenile Reader.

1. One day, CALLIPEDES, who had acquired high re. putation among the Greeks as a tragedian, and was universally caressed, approached AGESILAUS, and paid his respects to him ; after which he mixed, with a pompous air, in his train, expecting that he would take some honourable notice of him. At last, finding himself to remain unregarded, he said, Do you not know me, Sir?” The King, casting his eyes upon him, slightly answered, “ Are you not CALLIPEDES, the stage-player?”—At another time, being asked to go and hear a man who imitated a nightingale, he refused, and said, “I have heard the nightingale herself.”

2. The affection of AGESILAUS towards his children was so great, that he is said to have found his highest pleasure in sometimes sharing their infantine diversions. On one of these occasions he is related to


have procured a number of sticks, one for each of his children, and one for himself; and with these, instead of horses; to have formed his little ones into a troop of infant cavalry. Then, placing himself at their head, he gave the word of command, and led them, at a smart pace, round the room. One day, while they were thus engaged, a friend unexpectedly broke in upon them : but the King was not at all disconcerted, and only stayed the sport, that he might request his friend to say nothing of what he had seen, until he himself became a father ; intimating, I suppose, that he was not trivially, but affectionately engaged, and that, to one who was by circumstances enabled to appreciate the extent of parental affection, there would not be the least semblance of folly in such a diversion.

By nothing did my own dear father (now, alas, no more !) so much endear himself to me in the days of my childhood, as by condescending to become my play-fellow. And from general observation I well know, that it is a practice with many fathers to evince the tenderness of their affection by such endearing tokens. And if it be so, how great are the obligations of children to their parents, and how loudly are they called upon to observe the Fifth Com. mandment ;

6 Honour thy father and thy mother; that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.”



(By the Rev. A. G. JEWETT.) In the Youth's Instructer for April, (see page 135,) is inserted an account of the Animal Flower of the Island of St. Lucie. Perhaps it may be acceptable to some juvenile Readers, to be informed that beautiful specimens of this wonderful production may be found nearer home, and that the rocks of our Island are as fruitful as those of the tropical regions in these curiosities.

The eastern coast of Scotland is bounded by rocks. In the north, near Banff, they rise perpendicalarly, Vol. VI.


in some places, to an immense height; in others, they overhang their bases ; and in others, where the waves have carried away some of the softer or more disjointed strata, those which remain are inclining towards the sea, and by their sharp points, jutting out, seem to forbid further violence, and threaten destruction to the adventurous boat which dares to approach. In some places a huge pile of rock is completely insulated, and lifts up its head like a vast pyramid, affording a secure resting-place for the wild fowl, these naked rocks are sometimes perforated, and a lofty arch spans the waters which roll beneath; and in other places, the rocks joined to the main land are rent, and deep caverns hollowed out below, some left dry at low water, others accessible only in boats, and others closed by the murmuring waves against all entrance. In the winter, when the north-easterly winds sweep over the Murray Firth, its rolling and its roar, and the breaking of the surges on its coast of rocks, are truly dreadful : in the summer, when all is still, the scene viewed from the solitude of some of the heathy craigs, is the most lovely and tranquillizing imaginable : the spectator seems at the very edge of this world; the wide, interminable expanse of eternity appears 'as if spread before him, and he communes, if piously disposed, silently with God. The scattered fragments of rocks, over which the tide flows, are usually covered with kelp and various other Juci, under which limpets, and other shell-fish, are found adhering closely to the larger masses, and muscles safely moored to pebbles and smaller pieces of stone, or sometimes bedded in the hollows. Round the bases of the rocks, the water is remarkably clear; and in the fissures and natural basins, which the receding tide leaves full, it is so much so, that seaweed of the most delicate texture, small shells, and pebbles of varied hues, and minute animals, may be seen distinctly at the bottom, at the depth of twelve feet or more ; and the white strata of the rock, and the green colour of the sea-weed, are perceptible at a long distance from the shore, where the water is

« AnteriorContinuar »