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Mark the still-rumbling cloud crowding away
HURDIS's Village Curute. The flowers which blossomed in the last month soon mature their seeds, and hasten to decay. A new race succeeds, which demands all the feryid rays of a solstitial sun to bring it to perfection.
The different tribes of insects which, for the most part, are hatched in the Spring, are now in full vigour.
What kingdoms of th’ innumerous insect-kind
MOSES BROWNE 2. · Towards the middle of the month, the potato (solanum tuberosum), the spiked willow (spiræa salicifolia), jessamine (jasminum officinale), hyssop (hyssopus officinalis), the bell-flower (campanula), and the white lily, have their flowers full blown. The wayfaring tree, or guelder rose, begins to enrich the hedges with its bright red berries, which in time turn black.
See Mr. Addison on this subject, Tattler, No. 119. Spect., No. 420, and 510.
2 See much curious information on the minute parts of the creation in the Contemplative Philosopher,' vol. i, No, xxxi, xxxii,
Pomona now offers her fruits to allay the parching thirst; currants, gooseberries, raspberries, strawberries, cherries, and cranberries, are all peculiarly refreshing at this season.
Sometimes, however, and it is the case while we are now writing (August 1816), there is such an abundance of rain', that some of these agreeable fruits, for want of sun and dry weather, are not to be procured in any quantity till this month, and are then greatly deficient in size and flavour. During the present season (1816), we sincerely sympathised with the poet, who wrote the following sonnet
On a WET SUMMER.
Like me, were wont to dwell near pleasant field,
From early swain invites my hand to wield
And mark the lessening sand from hourglass fall;
Of dripping poultry, whom the vine's broad leaves
Shelter no more.-Mute is the mournful plain;
And vacant hind hangs pensive o'er his hatch,
Towards the end of the month, the flowers of the laurustinus (viburnum tinus), and the burdock (arctium lappa), begin to open; and the elecampane sinula helenium), the amaranth (amaranthus caudatus), the great water plantain (alisma plantago), water mint (mentha aquatica), and the common nightshade, have their flowers full blown.
The unprecedented state of the weather in June, July, and August, 1816, is well described in the following lines :
England! thy weather's like a modish wife,
Young frogs leave their ponds, and resort to the tall grass for shelter ; swallows and martins congregate previously to their departure; young partridges are found among the corn; and poultry moult. The hoary beetle (scarabæus solstitialis) makes its appearance; bees begin to expel and kill drones; and the flying ants quit their nests'.
The ' busy bee' still pursues his ceaseless task of collecting his varied sweets to form the honey for his destroyer man, who, in a month or two, will close the labours of this industrious insect by the suffocating fumes of brimstone. Such is the usual reward of good services in this world. We need not wonder at the prevalence of ingratitude, when we are accustomed from our youth to contemplate such scenes as these, -and, when wanton cruelty to animals of every description is practised with impunity-sometimes with applause.
They are all the meanest things that are
1 Of the ant, some interesting particulars have been given in T.T. for 1814, p. 189, and in our last volume, p. 205. Milton thus alludes to the'supposed provident care of the emmet or ant in heaping up food for the winter :
Of commonality. 2 To every one, but particularly to youth, we recommend the attentive perasal of Three Discourses on the Care of the Animal Creation, and the Duties of Man to them, by the Rev. James Plumptree, B.D.,' sold by Darton and Harvey, and Baldwin, Paternoster Kow.
To the BURNIE BEE. Blithe son of Summer, furl thy filmy wings,
Alight beside me on this bank of moss; Yet to its sides the lingering shadows cling,
And sparkling dews the dark-green tufts imboss. Here may'st thou freely quaff the nectared sweet
That in the violet's purple chalice hides; Here on the lily scent thy fringed feet,
Or with the wild-thyme's balm anoint thy sides. Back o'er thy shoulders throw those ruby shards, ,
With many a tiny coal-black freckle deckt; My watchful look thy loitering saunter guards,
My ready hand thy footsteps shall protect. Daunted by me beneath this trembling bough,
On forked wing no greedy swallow sails, No hopping sparrow pries for food below,
Nor ever lurks, nor dusky blindworm trails. Nor shall the swarthy gaoler for thy way
His gate of twinkling threads successful strain, With venomed trunk thy writhing members slay, .
Or from thy heart the reeking life's-blood drain. Forego thy wheeling in the sunny air,
Thy glancing to the envious insects round; To the dim calmness of my bow'r repair,
Silence and coolness keep its hallowed ground. Here to the elves who sleep in flowers by day,
Thy softest hum in lulling whispers pour, Or o'er the lovely band thy shield display,
When blue-eyed Twilight sheds her dewy shower. So shall the fairy train by glow-worm light
With rainbow tints thy folding pennons fret; Thy scaly breast in deeper azure dight;
Thy burnished armour speck with glossier jet. With viewless fingers weave thy wintry tent,
And line with gossamer thy pendent cell, Safe in the rift of some lone ruin pent,
Where ivy shelters from the storm wind fell.
The gifts of youth and pleasure in their bloom,
Annual Anthology for 1799.
Grouse-shooting usually commences towards the latter end of this month. The grouse (tetrao tetrix) is found chiefly among the mountains in Scotland, and on the moors of Yorkshire, and in some parts of Wales. The male is two feet in length, and weighs nearly four pounds; while the female is only about half that length and weight. Their principal food is. derived from the tops of heath, and the cones of the pine-tree, by which they acquire a delicate flavour, and ate speedily fattened. For a full description of grouse shooting, &c. we refer to · Fowling,' a Poem, before quoted.
The storms of wind and rain in this month are not unfrequently accompanied by thunder and lightning ; and as many serious accidents occur, particularly in the country, from not knowing how to guard against the danger arising from these phenomena of nature, we shall subjoin a few cautions on this subject from the work of an eminent physician.
When persons are overtaken by a thunder-storm,,, although they may not be terrified by the lightning, yet they naturally wish for shelter from the rain which usually attends it; and, therefore, if no house be at hand, generally take refuge under the nearest tree they can find. But in doing this, they unknowingly expose themselves to a double danger ; First, because their clothes being dry, their bodies are rendered more liable to injury; for as water is a very ready conductor of electricity, the lightning often passess harmless over any substance whose surface is wet; and, Secondly, because a tree, or any elevated object, instead of warding off, serves to attract the lightning, which in its passage to the earth frequently rends the trunk and branches, and kills any animal or person that happens to be close to it at the time.
A melancholy example of this one of many that might be quoted) took place in the Earl of Aylesford's park, at Packington, near Birmingham, in September 1789. Thomas Cawsey, of London, a farrier,