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minutest works, in the open air. Sir John Hill' thus describes the interesting results of a morning walk at this season of the year. The birds that had been silent for five whole months, now perched on the naked branches of the trees, looked up with a kind of joyful adoration to their enlivening deity, and began to plume themselves in his presence, and try their unaccustomed throats in songs of praise to him : the very boughs on which they stood seemed to disclaim their late dead, withered state ; and, swelling out in ten thousand buds, promised soon to meet his radiance with a more cheerful aspect: the little lambs that had hitherto, since their very birth, known no enjoyment beyond the supplying the calls of nature from the cold wet herbage, now seemed to feel new motions in their blood, and new ideas with them, and, by a thousand antic friskings, joined in the general joy.
I was contemplating all this from the side of the basin, and had afterwards occasionally turned my eye upon the liquid plane, and viewed, through it, the various things it covered : it was somewhat long before this thicker, colder medium transmitted the influence that had invigorated the inhabitants of the air; but by degrees the soul of nature, the Promethean universal fire, made its way through this obstacle.
"It was with infinite satisfaction that I traced the gradation of this pleasing effect: I cast my eye upon the shallow part of the basin, where the fluid was most influenced ; the sun darted his glowing beams uninterrupted on this spot, and soon began to triumph in the success of his influence. The smooth surface of the bottom began to elate itself in bubbles, and quickly after to send up parts of its green coat, with every rising bladder of detached air. These were
"Inspector, No. v, and in Drake's Gleaner, vol. ii, p. 26.
continued in long filaments to the surface, where the bubble that had raised them burst its watery shell, and mingled in the common expanse, the fibre which had marked its course remaining, and, with its congenial attendants, forming what the blind naturalist shall investigate as a plant, and trace in it imaginary organs.
The real plants, expanded flat upon the level surface, now began to rear their rough leaves, and their numbed branches; they rose to meet the cause of their new life at the surface, and to kindle into genial warmth to propagate their species. .
“The surface of the dusky floor, now naked, exposed more immediately to the influence of this inspiring deity, began soon after to disclose beings of a higher rank; myriads of worms were seen unwinding their coiled forms, and tossing their sportive tails about in wantonness and revelry; whole series of creatures, whose torpid state had before rendered them undistinguishable from the mud they lay among, began to expand their little limbs, and creep or swim, or emerge above the surface.
“As I was contemplating the opening scene, I could not but persuade myself that the source of the Egyptian enthusiasm, all that had given rise to their fabled stories of the production of animals from the mud of the Nile, was now before me; and I pitied those, who, instead of adoring the First Cause of all things, believed in the mad doctrines of equivocal generation; or, looking up to his great minister the sun, adored the instrument, instead of paying the rational tribute of their praise to him who employed it.
“As I was ruminating on this, a little creature of a peculiar form and singular beauty rose from the surface of the mud ; and soon after began to vibrate its leafy tail, to play the several rings of an elegantly constructed body, and to poise six delicate legs, as if to try whether they were fit for use : numbers of others followed it, and in a few minutes all that part of the water seemed peopled only by this species.
"I was ravished with delight at the joy I saw these creatures take in their new animated beings, and was offering an honest silent praise to Him whose unlimited benevolence had created so many happy beings, and who had created them only to be happy; when a hungry fish, allured by the prospect of so full a repast, left his companions, and, throwing himself among the insects, like a ravenous tiger into a sheepfold, destroyed and gorged them by nuinbers at a time.
Of the multitude that were now scattered to every part of the adjacent space, I luckily cast my eye upon a cluster that had sheltered themselves together under the leaves of a tall plant, part of which was immersed in the water, part emerged above its surface : one of this number, allured by the warm rays, rose higher up the plant, came boldly out of the water, and basked in the more free sunbeams under the open air.
The plant was near the shore, and I determined to watch the motions of this little adventurous animal. It had not stood long exposed to the full radiance of the sun, when it seemed on the point of perishing under his too strong heat: its back had suddenly burst open lengthwise; but what was my astonishment, while I was pitying the unhappy insect, to see, as the opening enlarged, a creature wholly unlike the former arising from within it! A very beautiful fly, by degrees, disengaged itself from this reptile case, and left behind it only a thin skin that had been its covering.
Such is, undoubtedly, the production of the butterfly from the silk-worm, and from all the caterpillar tribe : the pretended metamorphosis of these creatures is but the child of error and ignorance in the obseryers; and the caterpillar is no more than the
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future fly, covered by a peculiar case, and preserved from injuries in it, till its wings, and every other part of its delicate frame, are in a condition to bear the impulse of the sun and air naked. .
The new-born inhabitant of the air would now have been suffocated, in an instant, by the element in which it had before so long lived and enjoyed itself: it carefully avoided it; it first tried its newly disentangled legs, and gained by these the summit of the herb--to it, a towering pine: the sun, which at first seemed to create it, in its reptile state, out of the mud, now seemed to enlarge its wings; they unfolded as they dried, and at length showed their silky structure perfect and bright. The creature now began to quiver them in various degrees of elevation and depression, and at length employed them to their destined purpose, launching at once into the sea of air, and sporting in the wide expanse with unrestrained jollity and freedom.'
The husbandman is now eager to commence the work of ploughing, which important business is finished in this month, if the weather permit.
Behind his oxen slow
The patient ploughman plods;
Rolls its green billows to the April gale.
In this month, early potatoes are set, hedges repaired, trees lopped, and wet lands drained. Poplars, willows, osiers, and other aquatics, are planted.
Pheasant-shooting usually terminates about the 1st, and partridge-shooting about the 15th, of this month.
MARCH. AMONG the Romans, March, from Mars, was the first month, and marriages made in this month were accounted unhappy. The Saxons called March lent-monat, or length-moneth, because the days did first begin, in length, to exceed the nights.'
1.-SAINT DAVID. · SAINT David having founded several monasteries, and been the spiritual father of many saints both British and Irish, died about the year 511, at a very advanced age.
Mr. Southey, in his “Metrical Tales,' p. 196, has the following pretty tribute to the memory of this Saint, in his Inscription for a Monument in the Vale of Ewias :'
Here was it, stranger, that the patron Saint
The leek worn on this day by Welshmen is said to be in memory of a great victory obtained by them over the Saxons; they, during the battle, having