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There are now but few wild plants in flower. In the garden, in warm situations, the following are more or less in blow :-the ten-petalled sunflower, the late golden rod, pale gentian, bay, and wych hazel. We must not forget the pretty little virginia creeper, and the stately crysanthemum, of various species. A few primroses and polyanthuses continue to arrest the attention of the young botanist, which, with the many families of mosses, lead him to admire the infinite wisdom of God.
I shall close these notices with a few usefùl remarks, taken from “ Time's Telescope," for 1832, and adapted for November.
“ To prevent the gloom and melancholy proverbial to this month, the best thing is to defend the skin from chill and damp by proper clothing, and to seize every favourable glimpse of sunshine and dry weather to be out of doors. The power of electricity over the body is well known; in fact, we can never enjoy health or comfort without a proper portion of it in the system. When this portion is deficient, we feel languid, heavy, and low-spirited, and we very foolishly pronounce a libel on the blood, which is quite innocent; while we never suspect the damp atmosphere for robbing us of our electricity. Yet so it is. In dry weather, whether it be warm, cold, or frosty, we feel light and spirited; because dry air is a slow conductor of electricity, and leaves us to enjoy its luxuries. In moist or rainy weather, we feel oppressed and drowsy; because all moisture greedily absorbs our electricity, which is the buoyant cordial of the body. To remedy this inconvenience, we have only to discover a good non-conductor ; and the thunder-bolt, or the forked lightning itself, could not pass through the thinnest silk handkerchief, provided always that it be quite dry. Those, therefore, who are apt to become low-spirited and listless in damp weather, will find silk waistcoats, drawers, and stockings, the most powerful of all cordials."
BRIEF ASTRONOMICAL NOTICES,
FOR NOVEMBER, 1843.
“ How beautiful it is! though on the air
Lost in the spreading vapours.' “ ASTRONOMY is that department of knowledge which has for its abject to investigate the motions, the magnitudes, and distances of the heavenly bodies, the laws by which their movements are directed, and the ends they are intended to subserve in the fabric of the universe. This is a science which has, in all ages, engaged the attention of the poet, the philosopher, and the Divine, and been the subject of their study and admiration. Kings have descended from their thrones to render it homage, and have sometimes enriched it with their labours; and humble shepherds, while watching their Alocks by night, have beheld with rapture the blue vault of heaven, with its thousand shining orbs, moving in silent grandeur, till the morning star announced the approach of day. The study of this science must have been coeval with the existence of man; for there is no rational being who has for the first time lifted his eyes to the nocturnal sky, and beheld the moon walking in brightness, amidst the planetary orbs, and the hosts of stars, but must have been struck with admiration and wonder at the splendid scene, and excited to inquiries into the nature and destination of those far-distant orbs. Compared with the splendour, the amplitude, the august motions, and the ideas of infinity, which the celestial vault presents, the most resplendent terrestrial scenes sink into inanity, and appear unworthy of being set in competition with the glories of the sky."-- Dr. Dick.
The Sun, appointed by the all-wise and benevolent Creator, to impart light and heat to our world and all his surrounding planets, rises on the 1st day at Greenwich at fifty-five minutes past six, and sets at thirty-three minutes after four: on the same day he rises at Edinburgh at nine minutes past seven, and sets at nineteen minutes after four. The Sun enters the sign Sagittarius in the night of the 22d; and on the 23d he rises at Greenwich at thirtythree minutes past seven, and sets at one minute before four: on the same day he rises at Edinburgh at four minutes before eight, and sets at thirty-eight minutes after three.
The Moon sets on the 1st at a quarter before one in the morning, and on the 5th at a quarter past five : she is full on the 7th, at twenty-two minutes past five in the morning, and rises on the 8th about half an hour after sunset: she rises on the 10th at twenty-two minutes past six, and on the 12th at half-past eight. The Moon enters on her last quarter on the 15th, and rises about midnight: on the 18th she rises at three o'clock, and on the 20th at ten minutes before six, in the morning: she changes on the 21st, at thirty-four minutes past five in the evening, and sets on the 24th at a quarter before seven : she sets on the 25th at eight o'clock, and on the 27th at half-past ten, at night; and is half-full on the 28th ; and on the 30th she sets at a quarter before one in the morning.
MERCURY is visible to unassisted vision during the first week of this month : he makes his appearance near the south-eastern horizon about an hour before the rising of the sun.
Venus is invisible to the naked eye, being so near the sun; but through a good telescope, screened from the immediate rays of the sun, she appears like a little beautiful full moon: she is due south on the 1st at quarter past twelve o'clock at noon, when her right ascension is fourteen hours fifty-five minutes, and her declination sixteen degrees fourteen minutes, south: this planet passes the meridian on the 26th at a quarter before one in the afternoon, her right ascension being seventeen hours five minutes, and her declination twenty-three degrees twenty-four minutes, south.
MARS is to be seen every clear evening: he is due south on the 1st at half-past five, and at the end of the month about half an hour earlier; he sets during the month at about half-past nine : on the 27th he is in conjunction with the Moon.
JUPITER appears very splendid in the evenings; and as he is at this time brighter than any other star in the heavens, it is impossible to mistake him: he is due south on the 1st at eighteen minutes before seven, and on the 26th at fourteen minutes past five: he is near the Moon on the 27th, and on the 30th appears very near the planet Mars.
“ I look'd on thee, Jove, till my gaze
Sank, smote from the pomp of thy blaze ;
That made the stars dim in thy sight;
And leave thee the realm of the sky.
The purple was pale in the west :
Like a god from the depth of his shrine." SATURN is to be seen in the south-west after sunset: on the 1st he sets at ten minutes before nine, and on the 26th at twenty minutes after seven : on the 24th he is in conjunction with the Moon.
URANUS is favourably situated for telescopic observation : he passes the meridian on the 1st at a quarter past nine, and on the 27th at half-past seven: his right ascension during this month is about twenty-three hours fifty-six minutes, and his declination one degree fifteen minutes, south.
Emersions of Jupiter's first Satellite.--On the 6th, at sixteen minutes past nine at night. On the 15th, at forty-one minutes after five in the evening. On the 22d, at thirty-seven minutes past seven o'clock at night.
Portending tempests near ;
And breathes a hallow'd fear.
It makes my light heart dance ;
And cannot blow by chance.
Then pettishly complain ;
Like some sad love-lorn swain.
From bursting thunders loud,
O'er flowers with dew-drops bow'd.
And swelling in its rage,
As if a war to wage.
And rushing through the skies;
As swift as lightning flies.
Stealing with timid tread,
A requiem for the dead.
Rock'd by it to and fro,
Of sounds so full of woe.
And, childlike, with it play,
After a toilsome day.
With aught of texture fair,
How free from thought or care.
* From “ Lays of the Valley." By I. R. and M. A. BRADNACK.
I love, I love its every mood,
Its blithe or plaintive tone; I love it, since it is sweet food
For thought, when I'm alone. It tells me of the “mighty rush"
Of solemn Pentecost;
The spirit tempest-tost.
Where no more it is heard;
For faithful ones prepared.
COMMUNION WITH GOD. * O THERE are seasons when the soul
Can soar, upborne on eagle's wings, Far, far beyond the wild control
Of this earth's vain imaginings ; And, in the stillness of the hour,
The calm, delicious hour, of even, Can taste of holy joys and pure,
Joys near akin to those of heaven. How have I felt the soothing power,
Which nature in her holiest mood Imparts; while at this lovely hour
I've wander'd forth in solitude.
And still the path so often trod
Possesses charms unseen before ; The purple heath, the flowery sod,
Allure me still with magic power. My favourite skylark's tuneful note
(Sweetest of all the vocal train) Like heavenly music seems to float
In air, a soul-inspiring strain. The scenes around which meet my view,
The humble flowers, the lofty trees, With fields of every shape and hue,
And corn just waving in the breeze The pure and cloudless sky above,
Mildly, but not intensely blue,
* From "Meditative Hours." By MATILDA.