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From calyx pale the freckled cowslips born,

Lo! the

Receive in jasper cups the fragrant dews of morn.
green thorn her silver buds
Expands to May's enlivening beam;
Hottonia1 blushes on the floods;

And, where the slowly trickling stream
Mid grass and spiry rushes stealing glides,
Her lovely fringed flowers fair menyanthes2 hides.

In the lone copse, or shadowy dale,

Wild clustered knots of harebells

And droops the lily of the vale

O'er vinca's3 matted leaves below.


The orchis race with varied beauty charm,
And mock the exploring bee or fly's aërial form.
Wound o'er the hedge-row's oaken boughs,
The woodbine's tassels float in air,

And, blushing, the uncultured rose

Hangs high her beauteous blossoms there


Her fillets there the purple nightshade weaves,

And pale bryonia1 winds her broad and scalloped leaves.

To later summer's fragrant breath

Clematis' feathery garlands dance;

The hollow foxglove nods beneath;

While the tall mullein's yellow lance

Dear to the mealy moth of evening-towers;

And the weak galium5 weaves its myriad fairy flowers.

Sheltering the coot's or wild duck's nest,

And where the timid halcyon hides,

The willow-herb, in crimson drest,

Waves with arundo o'er the tides;

And there the bright nymphæa7 loves to lave,

Or spreads her golden orbs upon the dimpling wave.

(1) Hottonia-the water violet.

(2) Menyanthes-the buck-bean or bog-bean.

(3) Vinca-periwinkle.

(4) Bryonia-bryony.

(5) Galium-the yellow bed-straw.

(6) Halcyon-the king-fisher.

(7) Nymphæa-the white water-lily; the "golden orbs," in the next line, belong to the yellow species.

And thou, by pain and sorrow blest,
Papaver! that an opiate dew
Conceal'st beneath thy scarlet vest,

Contrasting with the corn-flower blue,
Autumnal months behold thy gauzy leaves

Bend in the rustling gale amid the tawny sheaves.

From the first bud, whose venturous head
The Winter's lingering tempest braves,
To those which, 'midst the foliage dead,
Sink latest to their annual graves,

Are all for health, for use, for pleasure given,

And speak, in various ways, the bounteous hand of Heaven.

Charlotte Smith.


In every copse and sheltered dell
Unveiled to the observant eye,
Are faithful monitors, who tell
How pass the hours and seasons by.

The green-robed children of the spring
Will mark the periods as they pass,
Mingle with leaves Time's feathered wing,
And wreathe with flowers his silent glass.

Mark where transparent waters glide,
Soft flowing o'er their tranquil bed,
There, cradled on the dimpling tide,
Nymphæa rests her lovely head.

But, conscious of the earliest beam,
She rises from her humid nest,
And sees reflected on the stream,
The virgin whiteness of her breast,

(1) Papaver-poppy. There seems to be an error here; it is the white poppy, papaver somniferum, which produces opium-the "opiate dew" of the text.

(2) Horologe-(from Lat. horologium, which is from "pa, an hour, and λéyev, to tell), that which tells the hour, a clock, a watch, &c. In the "Horologe of Flora," or, as it is sometimes called, "the dial of flowers," certain flowers, which open or shut at regular intervals, fancifully serve the purpose of a time-piece.

Till the bright day-star to the west
Declines, in ocean's surge to lave,
Then, folded in her modest vest,
She slumbers on the rocking wave.

See hieracium's1 various tribe
Of plumy2 seed and radiate3 flowers,
The course of time their blooms describe,
And wake or sleep appointed hours.

Broad o'er its imbricated1 cup,
The goatsbeard spreads its golden rays,
But shuts its cautious petals up,
Retreating from the noontide blaze.

Pale as a pensive cloistered nun,
The bethlem-star her face unveils,
When o'er the mountain peers the sun,
But shades it from the vesper gales.

Among the loose and arid sands,
The humble arenaria creeps,
Slowly the purple star expands,
But soon within its calyx sleeps.

And those small bells so lightly rayed,
With young Aurora's rosy hue,
Are to the noontide sun displayed,
But shut their plaits against the dew.

(1) Hieracium-hawkweed.

(2) Plumy-feathery, from the Latin pluma, a feather.

(3) Radiate from the Latin radius, the spoke of a wheel, or a line or ray of light emitted from a luminous body. As a botanical term, the adjective" radiate" signifies having florets set round a disk in the form of a star.

(4) Imbricated-from the Latin imbrex, a gutter-tile for carrying off rain-cut or indented like a gutter-tile.

(5) Cloistered-shut up in a cloister; from the Latin claustrum, an enclosed place.

(6) Arenaria-from the Latin arena, sand, which is from arere, to be drysandwort.

(7) Calyx-another form of the Latin calix, a cup-the outer covering of a flower.

(8) Plaits-folds; from the Latin plicare, to fold, through the French plier. In old English the word was plite. Chaucer writes:-" to sewe (i. e. to sew) and plite."

On upland slopes the shepherds mark
The hour, when, as the dial true,
Chicorium' to the towering lark
Lifts her soft eyes, serenely blue.

And thou! "Wee crimson-tipped flower,"
Gatherest thy fringed mantle round
Thy bosom, at the closing hour,
When night-drops bathe the turfy ground;
Unlike silene, who declines

The garish noontide's blazing light;
But when the evening crescent shines,
Gives all her sweetness to the night.

Thus in each flower and simple bell
That in our path untrodden lie,
Are sweet remembrancers, who tell
How fast the winged moments fly.


THE lists are oped, the spacious area cleared,
Thousands on thousands piled are seated round;
Long ere the first loud trumpet's note is heard,
No vacant seat for lated wight is found.

Hushed is the din of tongues-on gallant steeds,
With milk-white crest, gold spur, and light-poised lance,
Four cavaliers prepare for venturous deeds,

And lowly bending to the lists advance;

The crowd's loud shout their prize, and ladies' lovely glance.

(1) Chicorium-chicory or succory.

(2) The daisy. In allusion to the poem by Burns, beginning with the above words. (See p. 76.)

(3) Silene noctiflora-the night-flowering catch-fly.

(4) Garish-from old English gaure, or gare, to stare, used thus by Chaucer:"Now gaureth all the people on her." Hence the adjective may mean, staringly fine, gay, showy, oppressively bright.

(5) Lists-from Anglo-Saxon lis-an, to collect together. List is the Anglicised past participle, and means primarily that which is collected together, i. e. a collection, as in the expression "a list of names;" in a secondary sense, and in the plural number, it denotes the enclosure round which the company collected sit to behold a public spectacle, and also the barriers of rope, cloth, or board, which serve as the boundary.

(6) Lated-for belated-arriving too late.

In costly sheen and gaudy cloak arrayed,
But all afoot, the light-limbed Matadore'
Stands in the centre, eager to invade

The lord of lowing herds; but not before
The ground, with cautious tread, is traversed o'er,
Lest aught unseen should lurk to thwart his speed:
His arms a dart, he fights aloof, nor more3
Can man achieve without his friendly steed-
Alas! too oft condemned for him to bear and bleed.

Thrice sounds the clarion; lo! the signal falls,
The den expands, and expectation mute1
Gapes round the silent circle's peopled walls.
Bounds with one lashing spring the mighty brute,
And, wildly staring, spurns, with sounding foot,
The sand, nor blindly rushes on his foe:

Here, there, he points his threatening front, to suit
His first attack, wide waving to and fro

His angry tail;-red rolls his eye's dilated glow.

Sudden he stops; his eye is fixed: away,
Away, thou heedless boy! prepare the spear:
Now is thy time, to perish, or display
The skill that yet may check his mad career.

(1) Matadore-from the Spanish matador, a murderer, from the Latin mactator, which is from mactare, to kill.


The office of the matadore is obvious from the

(2) Aloof-i.e. all off-entirely separate.

(3) Nor more, &c.-i. e. no more can a man, thus lightly armed, do than fight aloof, without his friendly steed.

(4) Mute-synonymous with silent and dumb. He is silent who does not speak ; dumb, who cannot speak; and mute, who is compelled by circumstances to be silent. The epithet silent is often applied to things that admit no sound, as here, "the silent circle."

(5) Lashing spring-a peculiar use of the term "lashing." The noun "lash "is derived from the French lascher, to let loose, and signifies that which is cast loose or thrown. A lashing spring, therefore, may be a leap all abroad, free, unchecked, enormous or which, as it were, lashes the air.

(6) Away, thou heedless boy, &c.-There is great beauty in the sudden change of the narrator into an actual sharer in the scene itself. He seems so intensely interested in the scene he is describing that he cannot refrain from calling out to warn the "heedless boy" of his danger, and the reader's sympathy is proportionately quickened.

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