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a kind of mortar, with which they form a neat, secure, and comfortable habitation for themselves and their family. To moisten the dust, of which they build their nest, they dip their breasts in water and shake the drops from their wet feathers upon it. But the nests most worthy of admiration are those of certain Indian birds, which suspend them with great art from the branches of trees, to secure them from the depredations of various animals and insects. In general, every species of bird has a peculiar mode of building ; but it may be remarked of all alike, that they always construct their nests in the
that is best adapted to their security, and to the preservation and welfare of their species.
SWALLOW PREPARING A WALL FOR nER NEST.
Such is the wonderful instinct of birds with respect to the structure of their nests. What skill and sagacity! what industry and patience do they display! And is it not apparent that all their labours tend towards certain ends ? They construct their nests hollow and nearly round, that they may retain the heat so much the better. They line them with the most delicate substances, that the young may
lie soft and warm. What is it that teaches the bird to place her nest in a situation sheltered from the rain, and secure against the attacks of other animals ?
How did she learn that she should lay eggs—that eggs would require a nest to prevent them from falling to the ground and to keep them warm? Whence does she know that the heat would not be maintained around the eggs if the nest were too large; and that, on the other hand, the young would not have sufficient room if it were smaller ? By what rules does she determine the due proportions between the nest and the young which are not yet in existence? Who has taught her to calculate the time with such accuracy that she never commits a mistake, in producing her eggs before the nest is ready to receive them ?. Admire in all these things the power, the wisdom, and the goodness of the Creator !
HE Bosjesmans, or Bushmen, appear to be the remains of Hottentot hordes, who have been driven, by the gradual encroachments of the European colonists, to seek for refuge among the inaccessible rocks and sterile deserts of the interior of Africa. Most of the hordes known in the colony by the name of Bushmen are now entirely destitute of flocks or herds, and subsist partly by the chase, partly on the wild roots of the wilderness, and in times of scarcity on reptiles, grasshoppers, and the larvæ of ants, or by plunder
ing their hereditary foes and oppressors, the frontier Boers. In seasons when every green herb is devoured by swarms of locusts, and when the wild game in consequence desert the pastures of the wilderness, the Bushman finds a resource in the very calamity which would overwhelm an agricultural or civilized community. He lives by devouring the devourers ; he subsists for weeks and months on locusts alone, and also preserves a stock of this food dried, as we do herrings or pilchards, for future consumption.
The Bushman retains the ancient arms of the Hottentot race, namely, a javelin or assagai, similar to that of the CafFres, and a bow and arrows. The latter, which are his principal weapons both for war and the chase, are small in size and formed of slight materials; but, owing to the deadly poison with which the arrows are imbued, and the dexterity with which they are launched, they are missiles truly formidable. One of these arrows, formed merely of a piece of slender reed tipped with bone or iron, is sufficient to destroy the most powerful animal. But, although the colonists very much dread the effects of the Bushman's arrow, they know how to elude its range ; and it is after all but a very unequal match for the firelock, as the persecuted natives by sad experience have found.
The arrows are usually kept in a quiver, formed of the hollow stalk of a species of aloe, and slung over the shoulder ; but a few, for immediate use, are often stuck in a band round the head. A group of Bosjesmans, comprising two men, two women, and a child, recently brought to this country and exhibited at the Egyptian Hall
, in Piccadilly. The women wore mantles and conical caps of hide, and gold
ornaments in their ears. The men also wore a sort of skin cloak, which hung down to their knees, over a close tunic: the legs and feet were bare in both. Their sheep-skin mantles, sewed together with threads of sinew, and rendered soft and pliable by friction, sufficed for a garment by day
and a blanket by night. These Bosjesmans exhibited a variety of the customs of their native country. Their whoops were sometimes so loud as to be startling, and they occasionally seemed to consider the attention of the spectators as an affront.
CHARACTER OF ALFRED, KING OF ENGLAND. The merit of this Prince, both in private and public life, may with advantage be set in opposition to that of any Monarch or citizen which the annals of any age or any nation can present to us. He seems, indeed, to be the realisation of that perfect character, which, under the denomination of a sage or wise man, the philosophers have been fond of delineating, rather as a fiction of their imagination than in hopes of ever seeing it reduced to practice; so happily were all his virtues tempered together, so justly were they blended, and so powerfully did each prevent the other from exceeding its proper bounds. He knew how to conciliate the most enterprising spirit with the coolest moderation; the most obstinate perseverance with the easiest flexibility; the most severe justice with the greatest lenity; the greatest rigour in command with the greatest affability of deportment; the
highest capacity and inclination for science, with the most shining talents for action. His civil and his military virtues are almost equally the objects of our admiration, excepting only, that the former, being more rare among princes, as well as more useful, seem chiefly to challenge our applause. Nature also, as if desirous that so bright a production of her skill should be set in the fairest light, had bestowed on him all bodily accomplishments, vigour of limbs, dignity of shape and air, and a pleasant, engaging, and open countenance. Fortune alone, by throwing him into that barbarous age, deprived him of historians worthy to transmit his fame to posterity; and we wish to see him delineated in more lively colours, and with more particular strokes, that we may at least perceive some of those small specks and blemishes, from which, as a man, it is impossible he could be entirely exempted.
“A rose's brief bright life of joy,
Such unto him was given ;
Thy brother is in heaven!"
And must I call in vain ;
Will he not come again?
Are all our wand'rings o'er?
me play'd, Would I had loved him more!—MRS. HEMANS.