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ful assiduity finishes, her nest. It is a neat rotund, lengthened into an oval, bottomed and vaulted with a regular concave, within made soft with down, without thatched with moss, and only a small aperture left for her entrance; by which means the vivifying heat of her body is, during the time of incubation, exceedingly augmented; her house is like an oven, and greatly assists in hatching her young, which no sooner burst the shell than they find themselves screened from the annoyance of the weather, and most comfortably reposed amidst the warmth of a bagnio.
The first half of the month.--The summer birds of passage which arrived not in April, are sure to make their appearance at the commencement of the present month. One of the principal is the garden-warbler. This bird, immediately on its arrival, begins to pour forth its pleasing and melodious strains, which are not much inferior to those of the nightingale. The swift also, after his long flight through liquid air, arrests our attention by the vivacity he exhibits on his long sable pinions, and leads us to many reflections of what he may have seen and experienced since last we had the pleasure of seeing him, as it were, sweeping along the face of the blue sky.
!“Birds, joyous birds, of the wandering wing!
“We have swept over cities in song renown'd,
“And what have ye found in the Monarch's dome,
"O joyous birds! it hath still been so;
"* A change we have found there; and many a change;
"Sad is your tale of the beautiful earth,
Birds that o'ersweep it in power and mirth!
Flora now exhibits a thousand beauties, both in the fields and gardens : in the latter we have in bloom, the poet's narcissus, the globe-flower, white peony, columbine, yellow asphodel, lily-of-thevalley, lilac, star of Bethlehem, &c.
The second half of the month.–Our migratory as well as stationary birds are now very busy in the work of incubation, and the singing tribes fill the groves and woods with inimitable melody throughout the long days of this portion of the delightful month of May. The short nights are rendered exceedingly pleasant by the incessant and sweet strains of the nightingale. The little fishes in the brooks and streamlets glitter in the beams of the joyous
The insect families become numerous and lively at this time. The cockchafer, or May-bug, which feeds on the first budding leaves of the elm-tree, appears vigorous in the evening twilight. The pretty beetle, known by the name of cow-lady, or lady-bird, is now very common.
Every day unfolds fresh beauties to the admiring eye of the young botanist. The stately trees decked in new foliage, and the numerous wild flowers on the sides of the banks and pathways, must arrest the attention of even those who are unaccustomed to notice the operations of nature. The gardens smile with geraniums, tulips, German-flags, rockets, lilies, &c.
BRIEF ASTRONOMICAL NOTICES,
FOR MAY, 1843.
“My eye look'd round upon the vast expanse
Trembled at morning's first salute, and thrill'd
How astonishingly capacious must be the expanse which yields room for those mighty globes, and their widely-diffused operations! To what mighty lengths did the almighty Architect stretch his line when he measured out the stupendous platform! Inconceivable extent ! It swallows up our thoughts. Where are the pillars that support this grand majestic concave of the sky? How is that immeasurable arch upheld, unshaken and unimpaired, while so many generations of busy mortals have sunk and disappeared, as bubbles upon the stream ? The stars, which are such prodigious globes, how are they fixed in their lofty situations ? By what miracle in mechanics are so many thousand ponderous orbs preserved from collision, or striking against each other? Are they hung in golden or adamantine chains? Rest they their enormous load on rocks of marble, or on columns of brass? It is the Almighty fiat that has breathed upon it, and hath thus animated nature with those wonderful principles or laws of projection and attraction, by which this mighty fabric is supported; the latter the all-combining cement, the former the ever-operating spring. It is by the mighty power of attraction that the vast worlds of matter hang self-balanced on their own centres, and though orbs of prodigious bulk, yet require nothing but this amazing property for their support and continuance.
Thus, by means of the projectile impulse on one hand, and the attractive energy on the other, being both most nicely proportioned, and under the immediate operations of the Deity, the various globes run their radiant races, (without the least interruption or deviation) so as to produce the alternate changes of day and night, the pleasing vicissitudes of the seasons, the flux and reflux of the tides, (so useful to navigators,) and a thousand others. Let us then adore with a reverential awe that great and glorious Being, whose word gave birth to universal nature, and endued it with these
surprising properties; that incomprehensible Being who is perfect in knowledge, mighty in power; whose name, whose nature, and operations are great and marvellous ; who summons into being, with equal ease, a single atom, or ten thousand worlds.
The Sun rises at London on the 1st at thirty-four minutes past four, and sets at twenty minutes after seven: on the same day he rises at Edinburgh at twenty minutes past four, and sets at thirtyfive minutes after seven. The Sun rises at London on the 19th at four minutes past four, and sets at forty-eight minutes past
on the same day he rises at Edinburgh at forty-three minutes past three, and sets at eleven minutes after eight, mean or clock time.
The Moon sets on the 1st at ten minutes before ten, and on the 3d at half-past eleven, at night: she is half-full on the 7th, and on the 8th is due south at twenty-two minutes past seven in the evening: she souths on the 10th at nine o'clock, and on the 12th at about eleven, at night. The Moon is full on the 13th, at half-past ten at night; and rises in the south-east on the 14th at three minutes past nine in the evening: she rises on the 16th at eleven at night; and enters on her last quarter on the 21st, at four o'clock in the morning, about three hours after she has risen. The Moon changes on the 29th, at four minutes before six in the morning; and on the 31st presents her fine crescent in the north-west, and sets at a quarter past ten at night.
MERCURY is visible in the evenings of the last week; during which period he sets about ten o'clock: on the 31st he is near the Moon.
VENUS appears near the eastern horizon a little before sunrise : on the 26th she is in the neighbourhood of the Moon.
Mars is a splendid object near the south-eastern horizon at midnight: he is easily known by his ruddy colour: he is in conjunction with the Moon on the 15th day.
JUPITER rises on the 1st at a quarter past two in the morning, and on the 19th at a quarter after one : on the 21st he is not far from the Moon.
SATURN appears to the west of Jupiter, and nearly midway between that planet and Mars : he rises on the 1st at ten minutes past one in the morning, and on the 26th at half-past eleven at night : on the 18th he is near the Moon.
Note.-In “ The Youth's Instructer” for June I intend to insert some remarks on the Comet, the long tail of which was so conspicuous in the south-west in the month of March last.
JUVENILE OBITUARY. 1. Rebecca Motley was born at Horncastle, February 14th, 1825. Sickness led her parents to think more seriously than they
had done concerning their own salvation and that of their children; and Rebecca, when about nine years old, was sent to the Wesleyan Sunday-school. By God's blessing on the instructions which she received in the school, and by the ministry of the word, her mind became very seriously influenced. She sought the Lord early, and she found him. She was only eleven years of age when, in answer to prayer, she was made happy with the joy and peace of faith in Christ. Her last illness soon after commenced ; but though so young a disciple, she delightfully exhibited the supporting power of religion. If her sufferings were adverted to, she would say, “How much more did Jesus suffer for me !" Her last moments were blessedly tranquil. Her mother said, “Is dying hard work ?” when the youthful saint promptly replied, “No, mother; it is easy, for I am going to Jesus, I am going to Jesus.” She had not spoken these words long, when, on being gently turned round in bed, without even a sigh, she breathed her last. This was on May 15th, 1840, when she was fifteen years and three months old.
2. Died, September 5th, 1840, at Carharrack, in the Gwennap Circuit, aged nineteen, (only two days before her birth-day,) Elizabeth Trewartha, a useful and respected teacher in the Wesleyan Sunday-school in that place. She had previously been a scholar in the same school, and bad had the advantages of a religious training every way, as her parents feared God, and neglected not their household. From her youth she was graciously moved to walk in Christian humility and meekness; and as she grew older, she became more earnestly desirous, not only of getting good, but of doing good. At the commencement of her last illness, it pleased God to prepare her for a season of suffering by a very abundant manifestation of his love to her soul: she seemed filled with heaven, and rapturously ascribed glory to God and to the Lamb. Acceptance with God, holiness, all she enjoyed, she saw to be bestowed through her Saviour's intercession. She said once, with great emphasis, “I am as sure of heaven, as I am that there is a heaven.” That there was a heaven she knew from God's own holy book; and that same book promised her certain spiritual blessings; and these she felt she experienced. She rejoiced in hope of the scripturally-revealed glory of God, because the love of God was shed abroad in her heart by the Holy Ghost given unto her.
In this happy state she was kept, waiting for the summons of her Lord : and on the 5th of September, after being speechless for some hours, but evidently with an undisturbed mind, without any struggle, she fell alseep in Jesus.