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CHAPTER LXVII.

THE BATTLE OF OVITHLACOOCHE E.

at Fort King-forty miles distant from the scene of us? It certainly began to assume that appearance ; Dade's massacre-that the commissioner fell before his but no-it could not be. They were Indians, it is vow of vengeance !

true, but well proved in their devotion to the whites. Besides, they were men compromised with the national party-doomed to death by their own people -our defeat would have been their ruin.

It was not treason, as shewn afterwards—they had The murder of the commissioner called for some simply been deceived by the trails, and had gone the act of prompt retribution. Immediately after its wrong way. occurrence, several expresses had been despatched by It was fortunate for us they had done so! But different routes to Camp Drane-some of whom fell for this mistake of the guides, the army of General into the hands of the enemy, while the rest arrived Clinch might have been called upon to repeat on a safely with the news.

larger scale the drama so lately enacted by Dade and By daybreak of the following morning the army, his companions. more than a thousand strong, was in motion; and Had we reached the true crossing, some two miles marching towards the Amazura. The avowed object further down, we should have entered an ambush of of this expedition was to strike a blow at the families the enemy, skilfully arranged by that same leader of the hostile Indians—their fathers and mothers, who so well understood his forest tactics. The report their wives, sisters, and children—whose lurking-place of the warriors having gone on a distant expedition amidst the fastnesses of the great swamp—the Cove' was a mere ruse, the prelude to a series of strategic -had become known to the general. It was intended manæuvres devised by Oceola. they should be captured, if possible, and held as The Indians were at that moment where we should hostages until the warriors could be induced to have been, but for the mistake of the guides. The surrender.

ford was beset upon both sides by the foe-the With all others who could be spared from the fort, warriors lying unseen like snakes among the grass, I was ordered to accompany the expedition, and ready to spring forth the moment we should attempt accordingly joined it upon the march. From the the crossing. Fortunate it was for Clinch and his talk I heard around me, I soon discovered the senti- army that our guides possessed so little skill. ment of the soldiery. They had but little thought of The general acted without this knowledge at the making captives. Exasperated by what had taken time--else, had he known the dangerous proximity, place at the fort-further exasperated by what they his behaviour might have been different. As it was, called 'Dade's massacre,' I felt satisfied that they a halt was ordered; and, after some deliberation, it would not stay to take prisoners-old men or young was determined we should cross the river at the point men, women or children, all would alike be slain-no where the army had arrived. quarter would be given.

Some old boats were found, sceows,' with a number I was sick even at the prospect of such a wholesale of Indian canoes. These would facilitate the transcarnage as was anticipated. Anticipated, I say, for port of the infantry, while the mounted men could all confidently believed it would take place. The swim over upon their horses. hiding-place of these unfortunate families had become Rafts of logs were soon knocked together, and the known—there were guides conducting us thither who passage of the stream commenced. The manæuvre knew the very spot-how could we fail to reach it? was executed with considerable adroitness, and in less

An easy surprise was expected. Information had than an hour one half of the command had crossed. been received that the warriors, or most of them, I was among those who got first over; but I scarcely were absent upon another and more distant expedi- congratulated myself on the success of the enterprise. tion, and in a quarter where we could not possibly I felt sad at the prospect of being soon called upon to encounter them. We were to make a descent upon aid in the slaughter of defenceless people-of women the nest in the absence of the eagles; and with this and children--for around me there was no other intent the army was conducted by silent and secret anticipation. It was with a feeling of positive relief, marches.

almost of joy, that I heard that wild war-cry breaking But the day before, our expedition would have through the woods—the well-known Yo-ho-ehee of appeared easy enough-a mere exciting frolic, without the Seminoles. peril of any kind; but the news of Dade's defeat had Along with it came the ringing detonations of rifles, produced a magical effect upon the spirits of the the louder report of musketry; while bullets, histling Boldiers, and whilst it exasperated, it had also cowed through the air, and breaking branches from the them. For the first time, they began to feel some- surrounding trees, told us that we were assailed in thing like a respect for their foe, mingled perhaps earnest, and by a large force of the enemy. with a little dread of him. The Indians, at least, That portion of the army already over had observed knew how to kill.

the precaution to post itself in a strong position among This feeling increased as fresh messengers came in heavy timber that grew near the river-bank; and on from the scene of Dade's conflict, bringing new details this account the first volley of the Indians produced of that sanguinary affair. It was not without some a less deadly effect. For all that, several fell ; and apprehension, then, that the soldier marched onward, those who were exposed to view were still in danger. advancing into the heart of the enemy's country; and The fire was returned by the troops, repeated by even the reckless volunteer kept close in the ranks as the Indians, and again answered by the soldiers-now he rode silently along.

rolling continuously, now in straggling volleys or About mid-day we reached the banks of the single shots, and at intervals altogether ceasing. Amazura. The stream had to be crossed before the For a long while but little damage was done on Cove could be reached, for the vast net-work of either side; but it was evident that the Indians, swamps and lagoons bearing this name extended from under cover of the underwood, were working themthe opposite side.

selves into a more advantageous position-in fact, A ford had been promised the general, but the surrounding us. The troops, on the other hand, dared guides were at fault-no crossing-place could be not stir from the spot where they had landed, until found. At the point where we reached it, the river a larger number should cross over. After that, it was ran past broad, black, and deep-too deep to be intended we should advance, and force the Indians waded even by our horses.

from the covert at the point of the bayonet. Were the guides playing traitor, and misleading The troops from the other side continued to cross. Hitherto, they had been protected by the fire of those But half conscious of our perilous position, we already over; but at this crisis å manæuvre was pressed forward, and had got within twenty yards of effected by the Indians, that threatened to put an the grove, when the blue smoke and red flame end to the passing of the river, unless under a suddenly jetted forth from the trees. I heard the destructive fire from their rifles.

bullets shower past my ears ; I heard the cries and Just below our position, a narrow strip of land groans of my followers, as they fell thickly behind jutted out into the stream, forming a miniature me. I looked around-I saw that every one of them peninsula. It was a sand-bar caused by an eddy on was stretched upon the ground, dead or dying ! the opposite side. It was lower than the main bank, At the same instant a voice reached me from the and bare of timber-except at its extreme point, where grove: a sort of island had been formed, higher than the "Go back, Randolph! go back! By that symbol peninsula itself. On this island grew a thick grove upon your breast your life has been spared; but of evergreen trees-palms, live-oaks, and magnolias my braves are chafed, and their blood is hot with -in short, a hommock.

fighting. Tempt not their anger. Away! away!' It would have been prudent for us to have occupied this hommock at the moment of our first crossing over; but our general had not perceived the advant

SUMMER WIND. age. The Indians were not slow in noticing it; and

The low wind through my casement strays, before we could take any steps to hinder them, a

Between the jasmine's parted leaves, body of warriors rushed across the isthmus, and took

Soft whispering through the morning rays, possession of the hommock.

And rippling o'er the golden sheaves. The result of this skilful manœuvre was soon made

I hear its low voice far away, manifest. The boats, in crossing, were swept down

Where silver willows fringe the pool; by the current within range of the wooded islet-out And from the forest still and gray, of whose evergreen shades was now poured a con

Its murmur rises fresh and cool. tinuous stream of blue fiery smoke, while the leaden missiles did their work of death. Men were seen

Leaving the sunny world below dropping down upon the rafts, or tumbling over the

The jasmine's starry buds to seck, sides of the canoes, with a heavy plunge upon the I feel it gently clasp my brow, water, that told they had ceased to live; while the

And lightly play upon my cheek. thick fire of musketry that was directed upon the

That lingering hand sweeps round the room, hommock altogether failed to dislodge the daring band

O'er dark recess and quiet nook, who occupied it.

Through loose leaves rustling in the gloom, There were but few of them--for we had seen them

And wandering down my open book. distinctly as they ran over the isthmus--but it was evident they were a chosen few, skilled marksmen

Nor voiceless doth it from me sweep, every man. They were dealing destruction at every

To seek the bright free world again; shot.

And in my bosom thrilling deep, It was a moment of intense excitement. Elsewhere

An echo answers to its strain, the conflict was carried on with more equality-since That mocks the lonely toil of books, both parties fought under cover of the trees, and but

And whispers me away-away! little injury was sustained or inflicted by either. Where waving leaves and rushing brooks The band upon the islet were killing more of our

Are glancing in the long bright day. men than all the rest of the enemy.

There was no other resource than to dislodge them Away above the green earth's breast, from the hommock-to drive them forth at the

Away above the blue deep wave, bayonet's point-at least this was the design that Whose billows, in their hoarse unrest, now suggested itself to the commander-in-chief.

Chant o'er the sailor's shroudless grave; It seemed a forlorn-hope. Whoever should approach Where silver sails gleam far and white, from the land-side would receive the full fire of the

And beckon in the moon's cold rayconcealed enemy-be compelled to advance under The wild wind following on their flight, a fearful risk of life.

Still whispers me away-away! To my surprise, the duty was assigned to myself.

H. B. Why, I know not-since it could not be from any superior courage or ardour I had hitherto evinced in the campaign. But the order came from the

ARTIFICIAL COAL. general, direct and prompt; and with no great spirit A curious communication, by M. Baroulier, has been I prepared to execute it.

sent in to the Academy of Sciences, describing a method with a party of rifles-scarcely outnumbering the for obtaining a substance possessing all the properties of enemy we were to attack at such serious disadvantage coal. It is a fact generally admitted by geologists, that -I started forth for the peninsula.

coal is the result of the carbonisation of vegetable matter I felt as if marching upon my death, and I believe by heat under a strong pressure, and under circumstances that most of those who followed me were the victims calculated to impede the escape of their volatile ingreof a similar presentiment. Even though it had dients. M. Baroulier proceeds in a similar manner; he been a certainty, we could not now turn back; the envelops vegetable matter in wet clay, and exposes it for a eyes of the whole army were upon us. We must considerable length of time to a great pressure, and to a go forward--we must conquer or fall.

heat of between 200 and 300 degrees centigrade (or the In a few seconds we were upon the island, and melting-points of tin and bismuth nearly). Various kinds advancing by rapid strides towards the hommock. We of saw-dust, subjected to this treatment, yielded different had hopes that the Indians might not have perceived substances, possessing more or less the resinous lustre our approach, and that we should get behind them and colour of coal, and burning with a bright flame.unawares.

Newspaper paragraph. They were vain hopes. Our enemies had been watchful; they had observed our mancuvre from Printed and Published by W. & R. CHAMBERS, 47 Paternoster its beginning; had faced round, and were waiting with

Row, LONDON, and 339 High Street, EDINBURGH. Also sold by

WILLIAM ROBERTSON, 23 Upper Sackville Street, DUBLIN, and rifles loaded, ready to receive us.

all Booksellers.

POPULAR

LITERATURE

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company he always strives to be to young men, and DROPPING AN ACQUAINTANCE.

begs us never to miss a pleasanter invitation for the PERHAPS, reader, thou didst never chance to have a mere sake of coming to listen to an old Twaddle like too highly respectable acquaintance; if so, pass on him; by which means he, of course, irrevocably binds without perusing this experience, and thank thy stars us to his fatal mahogany, upon the next occasion of that thy life has been so fortunate. Many persons, his asking us thither. An old Twaddle!' Think of more particularly those who move in the first circles,' our too highly respectable acquaintance venturing to and those, upon the other hand, whose lines have make use of such a phrase as that! The very term fallen in the back-yards of life among the oyster- which defines his too respectable self to a hair! What shells and broken ginger-beer bottles-the Alphas hope can there possibly be of this dear old gentleand the Omegas of society-are never troubled with a man's reformation, when he can employ such an single too highly respectable acquaintance. It is the expression as that with the most callous indifference, youth of the middle-classes, among whose ranks I had and without one shadow of self-reproach! If, on the myself the misfortune to be born, who alone suffer in other hand, we go to this wine-party_which consists this respect, and for the most part without lope of of himself and ourself, although there is a glass remedy. This dreadful Scourge is generally of an age always placed for the chance (another of his absurd varying from forty-five to sixty, and has almost always, self-complacences) of somebody else voluntarily as he is continually telling us, enjoyed the friendship dropping in' and joining us—the port, we confess, is of our father, 'I was your father's friend, sir, for old and excellent, but the conversation—that is to many years; I knew him, sir, before you were born or say, the monologue, the endless narration of anecdote thought of; I wish you may be half so good a man as —is not new either, but partakes of what has been he;' are sentences which our too highly respectable not ill termed the 'fine old crusted' character. There acquaintance carries about with him, as it were, is some story of his, in connection perhaps with the phylactery-wise, or embroidered upon the borders of calling out of the Rutlandshire Yeomanry in 1826 his garments, so that, meeting him, it is quite impos- -'Or, let me see, would it be in '26 or 27?' (he sible to escape from them. I am inclined to allow never gets this right by any chance), which we have for I would be charitable even with an Incubus--that probably heard nearly one hundred times. When we he takes upon himself the triple functions of guide, enter the room, he is surprised to see us not in full philosopher, and friend, in the first instance at least, dress; he does not care about such things himself, from a kindly motive; but afterwards, when he in the least, but he thinks that not dressing is a bad merges all these attributes in the Unmitigated Bore, habit; he may be old-fashioned, and even antiquated, he has no such humane feeling, but watches our but that is his opinion; all which he, however, preyoung eyes grow dim, our young mouth open despair- faces with ‘My very dear young friend,' the lubricaingly, our entire being collapse beneath his withering tion which I have above referred to as being practised influence with a hideous joy. It is impossible that he by the great serpent family. Presently, and after a can be ignorant of what he is doing in this respect. story or two, our too highly respectable acquaintance, The serpent, who, after having lubricated his victim, with a shadow of paleness observable upon his usually takes the head of him into its mouth, must needs be glowing countenance, inquires whether we ever do aware of its own intention of swallowing him, how- such a thing as smoke tobacco ? The first time this erer tedious the process may be, and however great a occurs, we hasten, under the delusive impression that distance his fore-doomed heels may project at the he is about to offer us some grateful sedative, to commencement of the operation; and our Bore is affirm that we do, and are extremely fond of doing it. intelligent enough to know that likewise. This Upon which he replies that he is truly grieved to cruelty is generally the single crime of our too highly hear it, and that the very smell of tobacco about the respectable acquaintance: he is a man, I regret to clothes or hair-'And, my dear young sir, you must say, without any one of the pleasant vices except, excuse me if I liken you at present to the Fitcher, a perhaps, that of over-dining; and even this, since he very intense description of polecat'-always makes rarely asks us to dine with him, he might, as far as him exceedingly unwell. Our too highly respectable we are concerned, just as well be without. He often, acquaintance, who is never rude, treads, indeed, upon however, invites us to drop in and take a glass of the very borders of unpoliteness in respect of this wine in a friendly way, after he has concluded his matter, until we solemnly promise that he shall not repast. If we don't go, he tells us on the ensuing have cause to find fault with us again. There is no day that he is afraid we do not find him the good end to the deep influence which this sort of person may obtain in the mind of a youth by diligent boring; tyrant. My once familiar friend, Dick Wildotes, and if it were always to be exercised in the anti- discovered to me the following incident in the past tobacco direction, there would perhaps be little cause life of my self-constituted guardian, in the vain hope to regret it.

that such a knowledge would set me free. He told He, however, seldom rests satisfied until he has me that Mr Pawkins—which was my too highly separated us from the companions of our own age and respectable acquaintance's inoffensive title-was called choice; made us engage a seat for a term of years at by his equals-although I did not then believe in his particular chapel; withdrawn us from our own the existence of such persons— Presence-of-mind profession, and placed us in the office of one of his Pawkins;' and he also told me why. My Mentor relatives who generously receives us without pre- never narrated the anecdote in my hearing, but, as mium, but gains at the same time our gratuitous I am given to understand that he has often done so services for an indefinite time; and finally married us with much complacency, there is no harm in my to his niece, after which we cease to be responsible retailing it. beings, and only by the visibly increased import- Mr Pawkins, then, was once in a pleasure-boat ance of our too highly respectable acquaintance-the with some ladies out at sea, the only male in the external swelling of the monster consequent upon company, and one of his fair companions had the the total absorption of its victim-announce our own misfortune to fall overboard. It must have been long existence at all.

indeed before the crinoline epoch; but something or I first met with my own Mentor, who may very well other of that nature buoyed the unfortunate young stand for a type of all his class, at a great Whitebait woman up, so that she was able to take hold of the dinner at Black wall. I was a lad then only just boat. This was the opportunity which my too highly escaped from school, and of course entirely ignorant respectable acquaintance seized to make himself a of how to conduct myself ariglit at such a solemnity. name, as above. "I saw,' said he, that the boat Instead of husbanding my magnificent appetite in the was a very frail one; I perceived that the young proper manner, I actually commenced operations by lady's admission amongst us over the gunwale would going twice to Turtle as well as to the iced Punch very probably upset and drown us all; therefore, which goes along with it, like music with words. A although I deeply sympathised with her in her misadreverend sage, however, portly and dignified, but with venture, I caught hold of an oar, and, with the greatest an eye which seemed benign, who sat on my right presence of mind, rapped away at her knuckles until hand, interposed judiciously, and arrested for the time she let go. Wherefore he is well called Presence ofwhat would have been-and was eventually-a very mind Pawkins until this day. I felt that this was by serious catastrophe.

no means a creditable achievement; but the man was • Young man,' said he, in unctuous but impressive still a hero to me. He had somewhat fanatical views tones, 'beware of what you do. Appetite, a gift upon religious questions, Dick used to tell me, but I vouchsafed by the gods to youth, and to youth alone went to my too respectable acquaintance's house of (he sighed), is a talent which, misapplied and recklessly worship for all that. He possessed a great deal of wasted, is almost worse than apathy to food. There house-property, and had christened an entire street is many a man of matured judgment who would have of his "Agur's Buildings;' instead of calling it after given twice the cost per head of this entertainment, the name of Mr Plumlines, who was the actual archiand that will not be less than three guineas, if so little tect. “Agur's prayer,' he observed, was for neither --for the power which you have just been manifesting riches nor poverty, and these buildings are only for with regard to that soup. But consider what is to the middling class of people. I could not but see follow; think of the Future, my dear young friend, the vulgarity of this sort of practical piety, but I and guide yourself at all times by the carte. See here, felt obliged to forgive my eminent house-proprietor what an enormous distance-no less than five courses even that. off-is that whitebait which we are nominally assem- I ascribe my first determined aspirations after bled here to eat. Does the prudent rider, however freedom to the continuance of the late war in the confident of his generous steed, urge it to full career Crimea; but for that and the unparalleled sufferings at the first beginning of the race, or, far less, compel to which it exposed me, I might be still bearing my it to surmount any fence a second time? Be tem- chain; it galled me, however, in such a manner perate, my dear young friend, and restrain your during that epoch, that I was resolved at any hazard natural impetuosity, or, take my word for it, you will to be freed from it. Upon the subject of that cambe exceedingly ill.'

paign, I repeat, my too highly respectable acquaintMy highly respectable acquaintance spoke like a ance out-Pawkinsed Pawkins, bored me beyond the book; his prophecy was not unfulfilled. The last limits of human endurance. Upon every commander, thing which I remember, before I succumbed to the and upon every military movement, he gave an opinion various unaccustomed influences of that whitebait as tedious and as positive as though he had been paid feast, was the spectacle of this gentleman refreshing thirty guineas a sheet for it. The late Lord Raglan the tips of his ears by means of a napkin dipped haunted me like a dreadful phantasm; the very names in rose-water-'A device, my young friend, very note- of Lucan and Cardigan became to me as the beer worthy, as oftentimes renewing the enjoyment of food which has been left in yesterday's tumbler; the bare when your case would seem otherwise hopeless.' mention of the Times—whose conduct I admired in

I have reason to suspect that, upon the golden secret because he hated it-was to my ill-used ears grace-cup being handed round on that occasion, I like Cayenne pepper to the back of a flogged soldier. behaved myself somewhat indecorously, and instead of At last, at a little breakfast-party in my own apartbowing in a stately manner to my opposite neighbour ments, whither he came, uninvited, to tread upon me, over the goblet, that I put its cover on the top of my and patronise the rest of the company, he overstepped head after the Chinese manner, and winked at him. all limits, and presented me, involuntarily, with my My highly respectable acquaintance hinted at least at manumission. The conversation having been directed something of the sort next day, but blandly added into the usual Crimean channel, my poor friend that, being touched with my youth and inexperience, Wildotes had the temerity to give it as his opinion he had made it right with the company. From that that the Sebastopol garrison would continue to have moment the yoke was placed upon my neck. This provisions supplied to them in abundance. terribly bland old gentleman, with all his faults and "What, sir!' roared my too highly respectable weaknesses, became my Old Man of the Sea. Ridicule acquaintance, chafed with unwonted opposition, 'why, itself in vain attempted to shake the throne of my how should that be, when even now, in Archangel, they are giving for the coarsest wheat fifteen roubles say ? Miserable, hardened, unprofitable, disreputable the chetwort?'

profligate, I abandon you for ever.' I am not sure about the number; it may have been My Mentor left the apartment with quite a halo of fifteen or fifty, but I am certain about 'roubles the respectability surrounding the very back of his head. chet wort.'

Wildotes,'cried I, as the young man burst from his "I do not know what a chetwort is,' cried Wildotes concealment, 'my friend, my benefactor, I will give angrily, “and I don't believe that you know either.' you a dinner ; your ingenious device has saved me

I trembled at the audacity of this young man; but from all further persecution; I have dropped for ever the ground floor, upon which we happened to be, my too highly respectable acquaintance ! remained firm beneath us nevertheless; and pre- And so, in truth, I had ; the simple medium of sently, upon the production of a tobacco-pipe, my too this effectual release having been merely a pawnhighly respectable acquaintance left his youthful broker's ticket. enemy in the possession of the field.

In conclusion, I need scarcely add that, in publish'I congratulate you, my dear fellow,'cried Wildotes ing this veracious history, I have no sort of intention as the door closed with rather a slam behind that of throwing ridicule upon that friendship which is portly figure—my friend, you are a free man.' found to exist not seldom between an old man and a

'Sir,' said I with indignation, 'it is you that are youth. Than such a feeling, born of a kindly regard free, and even impertinent. am I to defend upon the one side, and of an affectionate respect upon myself, think you, when Mr Pawkins catches me the other, there seem to me few things more beautiful. alone?'

But where there is no real regard, but only officiousMy position had indeed become such that no choice ness, against which, whatever real respect there be, remained between bidding an open defiance to my must needs be sooner or later chafed away, where too highly respectable acquaintance, or becoming his dictation is in the place of authority, and a spirit cringing slave for the remainder of one of our lives. of meddling in that of kind solicitude, the spectacle Wildotes and myself, therefore, having resolved our- of an unfortunate young man with a too highly selves into a committee of private safety, determined respectable acquaintance is pitiable to see. upon a course of action which had for its object the immediate dropping of my philosopher and guide. Our arrangements being completed, I remained

HISTORICAL SKETCH OF SOLAR SPOTS. in my own apartment, awaiting his august presence Most persons who have enjoyed the opportunity of in a frame of mind far from enviable; not, as I well looking through a telescope, are probably acquainted knew, that he would manifest any signs of anger-his with the appearance of the sun as seen magnified feelings, when irritated, always taking the much more through a dark glass, and will agree with orir poetfatal form of injured virtue—but because he would be laureate when he says: sure to proceed to absorb me, with a more than usual amount of previous lubrication.

My dear young

The very source and fount of day friend, in whom I take so great an interest,' and the

Is dashed with wandering isles of night. son of my esteemed old friend' (he travelled in the These wandering isles, commonly called spots on company of my father once, in an Islington omnibus), the sun, especially arrested the attention of astronwere, as I expected, among the opening expressions omers immediately after the invention and use of the of his harangue; then he bewailed my choice of telescope, in the beginning of the seventeenth cenassociates, and my habits of extravagance exem- tury. The interest which attaches to the history of plified in having hot meats at breakfast (of which these appearances is greatly enhanced from the fact, he had partaken, by the by, himself, with considerable that by means of them the rotation of the sun is relish); He predicted my certain ruin if I continued conclusively proved. Careful observations of the in these courses instead of sticking to my desk. As spots, and of their paths at different times of the he pronounced this prediction, he approached that year across the sun's disc, give for the period of article of furniture, upon which a small square piece rotation about 25$ days, and for the inclination of the of card was lying, half-covered by a pen-wiper, as solar equator to the ecliptic, about 71°. Occasionally, though it courted obscurity. This card he took up the spots are sufficiently large to be visible to the and waved in his hand, as was his frequent custom, naked eye. Galileo, in a letter dated August 1612, in order to give effect to his oratory. I turned pale mentions that he and many of his friends perceived with agitation, and protested that it was a private one, without the intervention of a telescope, on three document. Mr Pawkins observed in reply that, successive days. A very large one was seen by considering our mutual relations, there could be no different persons in April 1764, and again in 1769; such thing as any privacy in documents, and then and many other instances might be cited, down to perused it with attention.

1853, in June of which year one was distinctly seen It was now his turn to grow pale.

at sunset. It appears, then, very possible that these "Is it possible, young man,' cried he, when he had phenomena were observed at a much earlier period; quite finished it, that this can be yours? Have I and we might expect to discover some notice of them nourished you in my bosom so long'

in the annals of different countries. This we find to Mr Pawkins,' said I, plucking up all my courage, be the case. The Chinese astronomers relate having with the knowledge that Wildotes was in the cupboard observed some spots on the sun in the year 321 of our listening to us, 'you have done nothing of the sort.' era; the Spanish conquerors of Peru found that the

'In my bosom so long,' continued Mentor, as though natives had observed them before their existence was unconscious of the interruption, 'without rendering known in Europe. These are almost the only instances you incapable of possessing such a'

of any explicit mention of them ; but extraordinary 'Sir,' cried I, as he approached the fire with the appearances of the sun are found recorded which evident intention of destroying the memorandum, might perhaps be explained by the presence of a

that paper is a legal tender; it has a value expressed large number of spots. In the annals of France, a upon it of three pounds, fourteen shillings, and six- historian of the life of Charlemagne relates that, on pence: if that is consumed, we shall have to pay the the 17th day of March 807, the star Mercury was money.'

seen on the sun as a small black spot, during eight • We!' ejaculated my too highly respectable days. This puzzled Kepler not a little, for he proved acquaintance with contempt, but altering his fell satisfactorily that no transit of Mercury could have purpose nevertheless—"" we,” young man, did you occurred at that time; he remarked, moreover, that

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