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THE BLACKBIRD. LOOK at this poor Blackbird in a thunderstorm! His feathers are all soaked with the rain, and his wings hang down in a limp manner, for they are so heavy with moisture that he can hardly shake them. Poor little fellow! He is terribly frightened of the lightning, and is anxious about his wife and little family that he has left in the nest at home whilst he went out to seek for worms. Let us hope that the storm will soon be over, and that he will get home again in safety. Blackbirds are not always black. In that charming book “The Natural History of Selborne,” we are told there was once a blackbird's nest found near Edinburgh with two birds in it perfectly black and two others perfectly white. Mr. White also mentions a very comical Blackbird, who, instead of whistling in the usual manner of Blackbirds, took to imitating a cock, crying “Cock-a-doodle-do!” like the old cock of the farm-yard.

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PRIMROSES AND VIOLETS.

EVELYN and little Margaret have been out in the woods gathering Primroses, and now they are returning home through the meadows. Miss Evelyn is rather a sentimental young lady, and, as she walks along, murmurs these verses

The Primrose and the Violet

Grow in yonder vale,
The Violet is the lover

Of the Primrose pale.

But Violet is too modest

To tell his hidden love,
And Primrose hides beneath her leaves

And dares not peep above.

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THE FIRST OF SEPTEMBER.

“Come out, 'tis now September,

The hunter's moon's begun,
The ripe and golden barley

Is waving in the sun.”

Yes, the barley may be still waving in some of the northern counties, but the wheat is all cut and tied up into sheaves, the gleaners have finished their work, and now the ist of September is here, and sportsmen are out all over the fields shooting the poor little Partridges. It is very good fun, no doubt, for the sportsmen and the dogs, but it is a terrible time for the birds when the ist of September arrives. I wonder whether the old birds know when it is coming, and warn the young ones of their danger!

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