Графични страници
PDF файл
ePub

round them, may be submitted to crys. Among the vegetable tribe, the class talization with the same beautiful re- of lichens, especially the cup-moss, are sult. W. H. WEEKES. most eligible subjects, nor are many

specimens of fungi less adapted; the P.S. If desirable, the crystalized two latter tribes of vegetables have subjects may be tinged with almost moreover the advantage of permanentany variety of colour, by boiling in ly retaining their native colours, withthe alum solution a little indigo, Bra- out any aid whatever from art. A zil logwood, French berries, or other thin coating of the crystalizing matvegetable and mineral dyes. A little ter only should be allowed to obtain care and ingenuity will likewise ena on most individuals of the cryptogable the operator to confine his tints mia, which is adequate to their preserto the crystal surrounding flower-blos- vation, and much more essential to soms, and other particular parts of the beauty of the specimen. plants which he may wish to preserve.

JOURNAL OF AN OFFICER

IN THE IRISH LEGION, LATELY SERVING IN COLUMBIA.-TOUR FROM MERIDA TO THE VALE

OF SANTA MARIA ANNA.

LE EAVING Merida in the morning, from Seville, in old Spain, with a view

we proceeded to the vale of San- to improve his fortune ; that, in conta Anna: in our way we visited the sequence of the refusal of another ruined monastery that belonged to prelate to place himself at the mercy the Dominican friars previous to the of the wind and waves, he was aprevolution. Here, instead of bare pointed Bishop of Venezuela, and that walls, we were surprised to find gild- on his translation to this rich see he ed roofs, marble altar-pieces, and oth- resided between Maracaibo and Merier vestiges of grandeur, that might da. I asked the Frenchman whether have done honour to Rome or Paris. the hero of this tale had died rich ? In the nave and chancel lay 'many Oui, Monsieur ;"_not content with good and holy fathers, whose pious an income of forty thousand dollars, stories were engraved upon their on the death of the governor of Maratombs for the benefit of posterity ; caibo, he made free with the treasure but, unfortunately, time and the damps in the royal chest ; a defalcation of had been extremely busy with them. six hundred thousand dollars was the One monument struck me more par- consequence, which could not be acticularly: it bore a copper-plate, near- counted for, and the governor's hacily fitted into the marble-slab, sur- endas were confiscated in order to mounted by two panes with wings, make good the deficiency. Not which covered the tomb, and on this thinking it prudent to return to old was the name of the late superior of Spain, he retired to the convent, the order, in Spanish, with many en- where he assumed the character of á comiums on his good qualities. A. hermit, and lived with the fathers a mongst many other titles, all too flat- life of piety and mortification, actering for any virtue except that of a cording to some; but, as others tell romance, he was classically styled, the tale, in all manner of voluptuousFulcrum Miserorum, gemma virorum. ness and hypocrisy. He himself had Having a natural curiosity to know been pressed into the Monk's service something of a man's history in whose as baker-general to the convent, to character those rare traits were to be superintend the bread and pastry, and met with, I inquired of an old French- also to act as pilot to his pleasureman, who accompanied me, as to his barge on the lake; during the liteknowledge of the superior. He told time of the superior he had enjoyed a me that the monk had originally come tolerable easy place of it, but after his

death the monks had obliged him to radical nuns going before the inquisicut fuel to serve the ovens, for which tor-general of their order with black he got many benedictions in lieu of eyes, and other tokens of the courage his promised salary. I asked him to with which they maintained their docwhose gratitude the superior was in- trines. In the avenues of the shrubdebted for his handsome monument; bery or tinta we met a fat monk, who he replied, to the fishermen of Mara- in the course of our conversation with caibo, in return for his having obliged him, regretted that the extreme povhis flock to abstain from meat three erty of the brother and sisterhood pretimes a week, which gave them a good vented our being received with the market for their fish : perhaps the usual hospitality of their prosperous hint was taken from Pope Leo, who days. As he looked too comfortable proclaimed Saturday a fast-day in Eng- a personage for a pauper, I remarked land, to oblige the pious fishermen of that fasting and mortification were that country, who gave him a douceur forgotten with other comforts. This of five hundred pounds for his papalill-timed repartee he took no notice of benevolence.

more than by a significant shrug, reThe monk could hardly have fixed marking, that before the revolution, on a more delightful spot through the they enjoyed many privileges, but that whole earth, than that retreat which the country growing poorer, and conhis own see afforded: here he could sequently more wicked, contributed enjoy his otium cum dignitate to his very little at present to their support. heart's content, unruffled by the care I told him, for his consolation, that a of this world, amid the romantic French and English colony would scenery of forests, lakes, rivers, rocks soon repeople the land, and give a and hanging gardens, with a climate fresh energy to manufacture and comthe most favourable. The gardens merce. “Oh, Santa Maria,” said he, belonging to the convents have gone

6 Voltaire and Paine's disciples !” A to ruin since the revolution, but suffi- prolonged ha-ra-co succeeded a pause, cient vestiges of taste and decoration in which he was evidently labouring still linger to tell what they once were.

under some mortifying perplexity ; to Innumerable flowers and blooming add to his chagrin, I told him a worse shrubs emit a delightful fragrance, evil than those was to follow, as the while the numerous exotics once col Methodist missionaries were instructlected in the green-house of the con- ing some Saint in the Spanish lanvent have been suffered to remain, guage, in order to preach the gospel in and, beautiful even in neglect and South America to the people of cowildness, lend a charm to desolation. lour. I can hardly describe the emoThese monasteries are connected with tions of the good father on hearing the female convents in the vale by a this account: he looked in despair, serpentine walk about a mile in length, and prayed to God to remove him shaded by tall trees interwoven so as

out of the world before that occur. to exclude the rays of the sun : at pro- rence should take place. I left him, per intervals, little arbours are plac- however, to his own reflections, which ed, festooned with the acacia, in bloom I dare say were any thing rather than the whole year round, and other flow- pleasant. The Frenchman wrinkled ery shrubs equally rare to the Europe- up his face into an arch smile, ex

Here the fathers were often en- claiming, 6 Monsieur padre is tertained by the sisterbood with cof- damned grand gourmand," and adfee, lemonade, and fruits, until dusk. ded that this fellow was a greater Our French guide also told us, that plague to him than any of the fathers; the demon of civil war caused a feud “ he used to squeeze my nose, Senamongst the nuns of the two convents, nor, in the wafer tongs, if he had who espoused the cause of their re

not the wafer for the sacrament and spective partizans as fiercely as the his breakfast-bread by six o'clock in contending generals and their armies: the morning." it was not unusual, he said, to see the In our way onwards, we saw five

an,

[ocr errors]

other convents, mostly in ruins from props that support them, while vast the earthquake; but, dreadful as such plantations of sugar-cane diversify the an event must be, one can hardly re- appearance in the vallies. Nothing is gret its having destroyed these recep- wanted to the perfection of this

scene, tacles of pious indolence, which ope- but that moral beauty which is supplirated as a double tax on the commu- ed by the presence of an industrious nity, by withdrawing from the general population, and humanity would hope toil so many people capable of labour, that this will not long be wanted; the and then taxing those that remained, tide of liberty and intelligence is setfor their support.

ting in with a powerful flow over the This charming spot is infinitely pic- whole world ; and though despotism turesque' and delightful : a succession may check the rapidity of its course of the most fertile hacundas cover the by temporary barriers, it must eventuvale for nine leagues: as far as the ally bear down every obstacle opposed eye can range over to the lofty Para- to it, and leave only the ruins of slavemos de los Cunegos Mountains you ry as the earthquakes have left the are sure to see the vine and olive ap- ruins of the convent. pear in rich luxuriance, festooning the

COUNTRY, CHURCHYARDS. No. IV.

MY Y next Chapter, I think, was to many of those who, when last we be of 66

graves, and stones, and looked upon this scene, stood here epitaphs.” Come then to the church- among their friends and neighbours, yard with me, whoever shrinketh not full of life and health, and the anticifrom thoughtful inspection of those pation of long years to come, full of eloquent sermon books. Come to schemes, and hopes, and expectathat same churchyard where lately we tions, and restless thoughts, and cumsaw the assembled congregation—the bersome cares, and troubles and pleaaged and the young-the proud and sures of this life ! How many of these the lowly—the rich and poor collect- are since returned to this spot-Yea ing together on the Sabbath morning — but to tarry here-to occupy the to worship their Creator within those house appointed for all living-to lie sacred walls. Many months since down and sleep, and take their rest, then have slipt away—the green undisturbed by winter winds, or sumleaves have withered, and dropt, and mer storms—-unawakened by the decayed, and the bare branches have chime of the church-bells when they been hung with icicles, and bent down sommon hither the Sabbath congregaunder the weight of winter snows, and tion, or by the voices of those they again they have budded and put forth loved in life, who pass by their lowly their tender shoots, and the thick foli- graves, already, perhaps, forgetful of age of summer has cast its broad “ the form beloved” so recently deshadow on the dark green sod, and posited there! again“ decay's effacing fingers" are at work, and the yellow tints of au

“So music past is obsolete

And yet 'twas sweet! 'twas passing sweet! tumn are gaining on the rich verdure

But now 'tis gone away." of summer. And man !--the ephemeron! who perisheth as a flower of This is again a Sabbath day-the the field-whose time on earth is like evening of an autumnal Sabbaththe shadow that departeth—how hath Morning and afternoon divine service it fared with him during the revolv- has been performed within those walls, ing seasons ! How many are gone to and now Nature is offering up her their long home, and their place on own pure homage. The hymns of earth knoweth them no more! How winged choristers--the incense of her

flowery censor-the flames of her centuries,-them also, the unsparing great altar, that glorious setting sun. hand shall smite, and they too, shali See ! how his departing beams steal lie prostrate in the dust ; and for their athwart the churchyard between those sapless trunks there shall be no renoold oaks, whose stately trunks, half vation, while the human grain, now darkly defined in the blackness of hidden beneath their roots, retains, their own shadow, half gilded by the even in corruption, the principles of passing brightness, prop that broad immortality, and shall, in the fulness of canopy of many twinkling leaves” time, spring up to life eternal. now glittering underneath with amber What histories--not of great aclight, while above, the dense mass of tions, or of proad fortunes, or of splenfoliage towering in heavy grandeur, did attainments, but of the human stands out in bold and bleak relief heart, that inexhaustible volume ! against the golden glory of the wes- might be told over these graves, by tern horizon. How magnificent that one who should have known their antique colonnade! How grand that quiet tenants, and been a keen and massy superstructure! Lo! the work feeling observer of their infinitely vaof the great Architect, which might rying natures! Nay, by one who well put to shame the puny efforts of should relate from his own rememhis creatures, and the frail structures brance, even the more obvious cirthey erect to his glory, were it not, cumstances of their obscure lives ! that he whom the heaven of heavens What tales of love, and hope, and discannot contain, hath vouchsafed to appointment, and struggling care, and promise, that where a few faithful unmerited contumely, and uncomhearts are gathered together to wor- plaining patience, and untold suffering, ship him in spirit and in truth, He and broken hearts, might be extracted will be there in the midst of them, from this cold earth we tread on! even in their perishable temples. What heart-wrung tears have been Therefore, though yon yon majestic showered down

upon these quiet oaks overtop with their proud sha- graves! What groans, and sighs, and dow the low walls, and even the sobs of uncontrollable grief, have burst ivied tower of that rustic church, yet out in this spot from the bosoms of are they but a fitting portico, an those who have stood even here, on

outer poreh," to the sanctuary more the brink of the fresh-opened grave, especially hallowed by His presence. while the coffin was lowered into it, Neither is their spreading arch, too and the grating cords were withdrawn, magnificent a canopy for those ob- and the first spadeful of earth rattled seure graves, so peacefully ranged be on the lid, and the solemn words were neath it. Many a sincere and hum- uttered Dust to dust!" And where ble Christian rests from his labours are those mourners now, and how beneath those green hillocks. Many doth it fare with them --Here ! a faithful believer, who has drunk they are here !-And it fareth well without a murmur his earthly cup of with them, for their troubles are over, bitterness, because it was awarded to and they sleep in peace amongst their him by the divine will, and because, friends and kindred; and other mourtrusting in the merits of his Redee- ners have wept beside their graves, mer, he cast down his burden at his and those, in turn, shall be brought feet, looking forward, through his back here, to mingle their dust with promises, to be a partaker of the glo- that of foregone generations. ry which shall be revealed hereafter. Even of the living multitude assemMany a one, to fortune and to fame bled here this day twelvemonths, how unknown," who walked thus humbly many, in the short interval between with his God, sleeps unrecorded in that and the present time, have taken the majestic shadow of those venerable up their rest within these consecrated trees. But when those giants of the precincts! And already, over the earth shall have stood their appointed graves of many, the green sods have season,-shall have lived their life of again united in velvet smoothness.

Here, beside that of William Moss, is into milk and just as the new barn a fresher and higher hillock, to which was built, and the parish rates were his head-stone likewise serves for a lowered, and the mulberry tree, was memorial; and underneath his name beginning to bear--and just as you there are engraven on it-yes—two had brought yourself to feel at home other names. The aged parents and in your long sleeves, and unfettered by the blooming son at last repose toge- the great garnet ring, and to wear ther; and what matters now, that the gloves when you were out visiting; former went down to the grave by the and, to crown all, just as your youngslow and gradual descent of good old est hope you favourite daughterage, and that the latter was' cut off in had made a splendid conquest of a the prime and vigour of his manhood ? real gentleman-one who had come If each performed faithfully the task down from Lunnon, in his own shay, allotted to him, then was his time on and talked about“ Hastleys," and earth sufficient; and, after the brief “the Hoppera," and “Wauxhall," separation of a few years, they are re- and the Vild Beasts, and Vaterloo united in eternity. But here-be- Bridge, and all them there things, and hold a magnificent contrast to that was to install Betsey (the old lady alpoor plain stone !-Here stands a fine ways furgot to say Eliza) lady and tall freestone, the top of which is or- mistress of a beautiful ouse in Fleet namented in a basso-relievo, with a Street. Oh! at such a time to be torn squat white urn swaddled up in pon- from “Life and all the joys it yields !" .derous drapery, over which droops a Ah, Madam Buckwheat! is it so ingilt weeping willow--it looks like a deed ? Alas! too truesprig of samphire - the whole set off by a blue ground, encircled by a cou

"A heap of dust is all remains of thee,

'Tis all thou art, and all the proud sball be." ple of goose wings. Oh! no-I cry the sculptor mercy--they are the pin Take care !-- never tread upon a ions of a pair of cherubims. There grave, What ! you saw it not, that are the little trumpeters' cheeks puffing scarce distinguishable hillock, overout from under them; and the obitua- shadowed by its elevated neighbour. -ry is engraven on a black ground in It is, however, recently thrown up, 'grand gold letters, and it records---Ah! but hastily and carelessly, and has of Madam Buckwheat-is it come to late been trodden down almost to a this ? Is all that majesty of port laid flat surface, by the workmen employlow? That fair exuberance of well- ed in erecting that gilded “ tribute of fed flesh! That broad expanse of affection,” to the memory of the farcomely red and white, “ by Nature's mer's deceased spouse. A few more sweet and cunning hand laid on,”— weeks and it will be quite level with

Doth all this' mingle with the common the even sod, and the village chilearth? That goodly person, clad in dren will gambol over it unmindful of rustling silks! is it shrunken within their old friend, whom yet they followthe scanty folds of the shroud, and the ed to that grave with innocent renarrow limits of a cold brick grave ? gretful tears that were shed for the What! in the very flush of worldly poor outcast of reason.

The parish prosperity~when the farmer's grana- pauper sleeps in that grave-the workries were overflowing with all manner house idiot. He for whom no heart of store-when your dairy had yield- was tenderly interested, for he had ed double produce-when the stock long, long outlived the poor parents of cheeses was unprecedented—when to whom their only child, their harmyour favourite Norman had presented less Johnny (for they thought him not you with twin calves--when you had an idiot), was an object of the fondest reared three broods of milk-white tur- affection. There were none to take keys, and the China sow had littered to him when they were gone, so the thirteen pigs! Just as the brindled workhouse afforded him refuge, and heifer of that famous cross was coming sustenance, and humane, treatment;

34 ÅTHENEUM VOL, 2. 2d series.

*

« ПредишнаНапред »