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ber frost with intervals of fog and rain, showers; 1790, sixteen days of mild December bright mild weather with hoar foggy weather with occasional rain, to frosts; then six weeks of frost and snow, the 21st frost, to the 28th dark with drivfollowed by six of frost, sleet, hail, and ing rains, and the rest mild dry weather ; snow.
1791 the whole of January mild with heavy For 1772–73, October, November, and rains; and lastly, 1792, "some hard to December 22, rain, with mild weather; frost in January, but mostly wet and to the end of 1772, cold foggy weather; mild." then a week of frost, followed by three There is nothing certainly in this recof dark rainy weather. First fortnight ord to suggest that any material change of February frost; thence to the end of has take place in our January weather March misty showery weather.
during the last eighty years. And if we Passing over the winter of 1773–74, had given the record of the entire winter which was half rainy, half frosty, what for each of the years above dealt with could more closely resemble the winter the result would have been the same. weather we have had so much of during We have, in fact, very striking evidence the last few years, than that experienced in Gilbert White's account of the cold in the winter of 1774-75? From August weather of December, 1784, which he 24 to the third week of November rain, specially describes as
very extraordiwith frequent intervals of sunny weather; nary,' to show that neither our severe to the end of December, dark dripping nor our average winter weather can differ fogs; to the end of the first fortnight in materially from that which people expeMarch, rain almost every day.
rienced in the eighteenth century. “In And so on, with no remarkable chan- the evening of December 9th,” he says, ges, until the year 1792, the last of Gil- “the air began to be so very sharp that bert White's records.
we thought it would be curious to attend If we limit our attention to any given to the motions of a thermometer; we month of winter, we find the same nix- therefore hung out two, one made by ture of cold and dry with wet and open Martin and one by Dolland” (sic, preweather as we are familiar with at pres- sumably Dollond), “which soon began ent. Take, for instance, the month to show us what we were to expect; for usually the most wintry of all, viz. Jan- by ten o'clock they fell to twenty-one, uary: Passing over the years already and at eleven to four, when we went to considered, we have January, 1776, dark bed. On the roth, in the morning the and frosty with much snow till the 26th quicksilver in Dolland's glass was down (at this time the Thames was frozen to half a degree below zero, and that of over), then foggy with hoar frost; Jan- Martin's, which was absurdly graduated uary, 1777, frosty till the oth, then only to four degrees above zero, sank foggy and showery ; 1778, frosty till the quite into the brass guard of the ball, so 13th, then rainy to the 24th, then hard that when the weather became most infrost; 1779, frost and showers through- teresting this was useless. On the roth, out January; 1780, frost throughout; at eleven at night, though the air was 1781, frost and snow to the 25th, then rain perfectly still, Dolland's glass went down and snow; 1782, open and mild ; 1783, to one degree below zero!” The note rainy with heavy winds; 1784, hard of exclamation is White's. He goes on frost; 1785, a thaw on the 2nd, then to speak of “this strange severity of the rainy weather to the 28th, the rest of the weather,” which was not exceeded that month frosty; 1786, frost and snow tiil winter, or at any time during the twentyJanuary 7, then a week mild with much four years of White's observations. Withrain, the next week heavy snow, and the in the last quarter of a century, the therrest mild with frequent rain ; 1787, first mometer, on more than one occasion, twenty-four days, dark moist mild has shown two or three degrees below weather, then four days frost, the rest zero. Certainly the winters cannot be mild and showery; 1788, thirteen days supposed to have been ordinarily severer mild and wet, five days of frost, and from than ours in the latter half of the last January 18 to the end of month dry century, when we find that thermometers, windy weather; 1789, thirteen days hard by well-known instrument-makers were frost, the rest of the month mild with so constructed as to indicate no lower
temperature than four degrees above yet these processes are far too slow to zero.
appreciably affect the supply of water Let us return, after this somewhat long for a period far longer than that during digression, to the levelling action of rain which (in all probability) life can conand rivers.
tinue upon the earth. If we consider this action alone, we When we consider the force really cannot but recognise in it a cause suffi- represented by the downfall of rain, we cient to effect the removal of all the need not greatly wonder that the levelhigher parts of the land to low levels, ling power of rain is so effective. The and eventually of all the low-lying land sun's heat is the true agent in thus levelto the sea, in the course of 'such periods ling the earth, and if we regard, as we as geology makes us acquainted with. justly may, the action of water, whether The mudbanks at the mouths of rivers in the form of rain or river, or of seashow only a part of what rain and river wave raised by wind or tide, as the chief action is doing, yet consider how enorm levelling and therefore destructive force ous is the mass which is thus carried into at work upon the earth, and the action the sea. It has been calculated that in of the earth's vulcanian energies as the a single week the Ganges alone carries chief restorative agent, then we may away from the soil of India and delivers fairly consider the contest as lying beinto the sea twice as much solid sub tween the sun's heat and the earth's instance as is contained in the great pyra ternal heat. There can be little question mid of Egypt. “ The Irrawaddy," says as to what would be the ultimate issue Sir J. Herschel, “sweeps off from Bur of the contest, if land and sea and air mah 62 cubic feet of earth in every sec all endured or were only so far modified ond of time on an average, and there are as they were affected by these causes. 86,400 seconds in every day, and 365 Sun-heat would inevitably prevail in the days in every year; and so on for other long run over earth-heat. But we see rivers." Nor is there any reason to from the condition of our moon how the fear or hope that the rains will cease, withdrawal of water and air from the and this destructive process come to an scene must diminish the sun's power of end. For though the quantity of water levelling the irregularities of the earth's on the surface of the earth is probably surface. We say advisedly diminish, not undergoing a slow process of diminution, destroy; for there can be no question small portions of it year by year taking that the solar heat alternating with the their place as waters under the earth,* cold of the long lunar night is still at
work levelling, however slowly, the
moon's surface; and the same will be * Those whose custom it is to regard all theorising respecting the circumstances re
the case with our earth when her oceans vealed by observation as unscientific, may and atmosphere have disappeared by read with profit an extremely speculative pass slow processes of absorption. age in Newton's Principia relating to the prob The power actually at work at present able drying up of the earth in future ages : "As the seas," he says, “ are absolutely neces.
in producing rain, and so indirectly in sary to the constitution of our earth, that from levelling the earth's surface, is enormous. them the sun, by its heat, may exhale a suffi We have shown elsewhere that the cient quantity of vapors, which, being gathered amount of heat required to evaporate a together into clouds, may drop down in rain,
quantity of water which would cover an for watering of the earth, and for the production and nourishment of vegetables; or being area of 100 square miles to a depth of 1 condensed with cold on the tops of moun
inch would be equal to the heat which tains (as some philosophers with reason judge), may run down in springs and rivers ; so for the conservation of the seas and fluids is always found to settle at the bottom of of the planets, comets seem to be required, putrefied fluids ; and hence it is that the bulk that, from their exhalations and vapors con of the solid earth is continually increased ; and densed, the wastes of the planetary fluids the fluids, if they are not supplied from withspent upon vegetation and putrefaction, and out, must be in a continual decrease, and converted into dry earth, may be ultimately quite fail at last. I suspect, moreover, that it supplied and made up ; for all vegetables en is chiefly from the comets that spirit comes, tirely derive their growths from fluids, and which is indeed the smallest but the most subafterwards, in great measure, are turned into tle and useful part of our air, and so much redry earth by putrefaction; and a sort of slime quired to sustain the life of all things with us.”
would be produced by the combustion of gy of the forces really causing these prohalf a million tons of coals, and that the cesses. “I have seen,” says Professor amount of force of which this consump- Tyndall, “the wild stone-avalanches of tion of heat would be the equivalent cor- the Alps, which smoke and thunder down responds to that which would be required the declivities with a vehemence almost to raise a weight of upwards of one thou- sufficient to stun the observer. I have sand millions of tons to a height of i
also seen snow - flakes descending so mile. When we remember that the land softly as not to hurt the fragile spangles surface of our earth amounts to about of which they were composed; yet to fifty millions of square miles, we per- produce from aqueous vapor a quantity ceive how enormous must be the force- which a child could carry of that tender equivalent of the annual rainfall of our material demands an exertion of energy earth. We are apt to overlook when competent to gather up the shattered contemplating the silent and seemingly blocks of the largest stone avalanche I quiet processes of nature—such as the have ever seen, and pitch them to twice formation of the rain-cloud or the pre- the height from which they fell."--Corn. cipitation of rain-the tremendous ener- hill Magazine.
And why so heart-sick and sad am I?
Oh say, love, why this should be ! Oh say, my heart's very darling, why
Hast thou forsaken me ?
“ Liebe, sollst mir heute sagen!"
Say, love, art thou not a vision ?
Speak, for I to know were fain,Such as summer hours Elysian
Breed within the poet's brain ?
Nay, a mouth of such completeness,
Eyes of such bewitching flame,
Never did a poet frame.
Vampires, basilisks, chimæras,
Dragons, monsters, all the dire Creatures of the fable eras,
Quicken in the poet's fire.
But thyself, so artful-artless,
Thy sweet face, thy tender eyes, With their looks so fond, so heartless,
Never poet could devise.
I CANNOT imagine what daunts me,
And makes me feel eerie and low : A legend, it troubles, it haunts me,
A legend of long ago.
The air chills, day is declining,
And smoothly Rhine's waters run, And the peaks of the mountains are shining
Aloft in the setting sun.
A maiden of wondrous seeming,
Most beautiful sits, see, there! Her jewels in gold are gleaming,
She combs out her golden hair.? With a comb of red gold she parts it,
And still as she combs it, she sings; As the melody falls on our hearts, it
With power as of magic stings.
With a spasm the boatman hears it,
Out there in his little skiff ;
He only looks up to the cliff.
The waters will sweep, I am thinking,
O'er skiff, ay, and boatman ere long;
BY MRS. OLIPHANT.
thing. He made some cynical remarks
prompted by his manhood, but it was Lilias did not say much about the ad- like much manly cynicism, only from the venture in the wood; nothing at all in- lips, no deeper." I thought fairies were deed to Mary or any one in authority; all dead," he said. nor did it dweil in her mind as a thing Oh, Nello; when you know they are of much importance. The kind of spirits and never die ! they are hundreds things that strike a child's mind as and hundreds of years older than we are, wonderful are not always those which but they never die ; and it is always chilwould most impress an older person. dren that see them. I thought she would There were many things at Penninghame tell us to do somethingvery curious and strange to the little girl. "I would not do something," said The big chimneys of the old house, for Nello, "I would say, 'Old woman, do it instance, the sun-dial in the old garden, yourself.'' and on a lower level the way in which “And do you know what wouid hapCook's cap kept on, which seemed to pen then," said Lilias, severely, whenLilias miraculous, no means of securing ever you opened your mouth, a toad or it being visible. She pondered much on a frog would drop out of it.” these things, trying to arrive at feasible “I should not mind; how funny it theories in respect to them, but there would be! how the people would be sur. was no theory required about the other prised." very natural incident. That an old “ They would be frightened-fancy ! wonian should meet her in the woods, every word you said ; till all round there and kiss her, and ask to be called would be things creeping and creeping granny, and cry over her,-there was and crawling all over you ; slimy cold nothing wonderful in that; and indeed things that would make people shiver and if, as she already suspected, it was no shriek. Oh !" said Lilias, recoiling and old woman at all but a fairy, such as putting up her hands, as if to put him those in the story-books, who would away ; " the frogs! squattling and jumpprobably appear again and set her tasks ing all over the Hoor. to do, much more difficult than calling At this lively realisation of his probher granny, and end by transforming lematical punishment, Nello himself grew herself into a beautiful lady—this would pale, and nervously looked about him. still remain quite comprehensible, not by I would kill her," he cried, furiously; any means unparalleled in the experi- what right would she have to do that ence of one who had already mastered to me?" a great deal of literature treating of such Because you did not obey her, subjects. She was interested but not Nello." surprised, for was it not always to a child “And why should I obey her?" cried or children by themselves in a wood, the boy; "she is not papa, or Martuccia, that fairies did speak? She told Nello or-Mary. ” about the meeting, who was not surprised "But we must always do what the any more than she was; for though he fairies tell us,” said Lilias ; was not very fond of reading himself, he haps because they have a right-for cerhad shared all his sister's, having had tainly it is different with papa-but betrue histories of fairies read to him al- cause they would hurt us if we didn't; most since ever he could recollect any and then if you are good and pick up the