Imatges de pÓgina
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Berne,

Hofwyl,

Lucerne,

Lucerne to Berne,

Ferney,

Few Trivial Notes,

Few Weeks on the Continent:-

Baden-Baden to Basle,

Basle to Baden-en-Suisse,
Baden-en-Suisse to Zurich,

Zurich to Lucerne,

Freswick Pilot,

Friburg,

Friendship's Offering for 1843,

Furry-day,

-

Century,

Hints for Picture Criticism,

Hints to Operatives,

on,

Emigration of the Seminoles,

Emigration to Canada,

England in the Nineteenth Century,

English and Foreign Inns,

English Farmers' Clubs,
English Grammar,
English Surnames,
Esquire, Use of the Term,
Experiments in Mesmerism,
Eye, Turnbull on the,
Fabulous Animals,
Factories, Taylor on the,
Factory Labour,

Factory Proceedings,
Familiar Quotations.

Farmers' Clubs, English,
Favourite Phrases,

Fellenberg, M. de,

History in Language,
Hofwyl,

Homely Scottish Pictures,
Hood's Comic Annual,
Horace, Life of,

Horses, English and Arabian,
Howitt on Germany,

"Hungarian Castle,"

Hunt's New Poem,

Hutton Hall,

Hydromania,

Gaberlunzie's Wallet,

348, 356

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Page
310
165

127 Geneva,

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Howitt's Work from the Swedish,

Humble Class of Emigrants,

341

321

104

276

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87 Genevese Watches,
Geology, Agricultural,

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10 Germany, Public Gardens of,

413 Germany, Streets of,

212 Goldsmith's Hall,

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304 Good Friday,

361 Great Britain Steam-Vessel,
Glaciers,

71

92

Glacier of the Rhone,

Glasgow, Destitution in,
209 Glasgow Directories, Old,
400 Glasgow Water Works,

183 Goldau,

69 Golden Hair,

207, 372
226

Hair, Golden,

Handeck, Cataract of,

Harrison and the Perrys,

Haunted Houses,

14
Health and Disease, Liebig on, 306
Heat and Odour, Influence of Colour

on,
Herrnhut,

Highland Chief of the Seventeenth

Garston on Greece,

Geikie's Etchings,

296 Gordon Riots,

173 Gray's Poems,
Greece,

268
350

368

118 Lancashire Wakes,

Morat-Lausanne,

132 Latin, Learning of,

Vevay-Chillon,

150

Lausanne,

Geneva,

169

Coppet-Ferney-Friburg,

181
196

Neuchatel,

Enter France-Return Home, 209
Findon and its Haddocks,
Fisheries, British,

55
279
294

Fishing in the Ohio,

Floating Island in Derwent Lake, 352

259

Flower Girl of Madrid,
Forgotten Poet,

293

France, Literature of,

383

French Custom-house Laws,

209
159

181 Liebig's Animal Chemistry,

379 Liebig on Health and Disease,

127 Life and Poetry of Coleridge,

162 Life-Preserving Capes,

258 Life Insurance,

255 "Life in the West,"

Germany, Cheap Justice in,
Germany, First Impressions of,
Germany, Life in,

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Grimsel, Hospice of the,
Grindelwald,

100, 114
384
410

261

Ireland, Poor Law in,

332 Ireland, Round Towers of,
Ireland, Temperance in,
Irish Pipers,

26 Irish Servants,

131
143

Infant Schools, Jewish,
Inns, English and Foreign,
Insane, Treatment of the,
Insanity, Dr Combe on,
Insects, Structure of,
Insurrections at Lyons,
Interesting Pamphlet,
Interlaken,

Ireland, as a Field of Emigration
for Scotsmen,

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Local Distinctions,

London Life, Story of,
London Streets, State of,

373
292 Lucky Numbers,
360 Lucretius, Life of,

Leeches, Foreign,

Letter from a Canadian Emigrant,
Letters from a Lady in London:-
Madam Tussaud's Exhibition,
Stafford House,

Christ's Hospital,

Loss of Ships by Burning,

381 Lyceums, Manchester,
118 Lyons Courier,

40 Lyons, Insurrections at,

24 Macbeth, True Story of,

Literary Fund Dinner,

Liverpool Mechanics' Institution,
Lobster-Pots, the,

Madden on Slavery in Egypt,
Madras,

Madrid. Bull-Fight at,

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104
126
210, 220
317, 322
364
85

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Melbourne,
Memory,

411

45 Merse, Old House in the,

76 Mesmeric Sleep, Amputation in

342 Mesmerism, Experiments in,

154 Meyringen,

276 Mint, the,

92 Missouri, Life in,

400

Mock King of Munster,
316 Moffat on South Africa,
221
Mont Blanc,
162 Mormonism,
158 Morat,
16

206

Moravian Establishments,
Mortality in Factories,
Museum, British,

258

278
154, 251
230
403
170

69
79

93

343

343
54

341

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363 Madrid, Flower-Girl of,

23 Magnetism, Animal, in Manchester, 38

218 Maid of Orleans,

411

31
381

277

140

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Oceola,
Ohio, Fishing in,
Omnibus Adventure,
Operatives, Hints to,
Opium-smoking,
Original of King Lear,
Orleans, Maid of,
Ornamental Grounds,
Osier-Weaving,
"Other People,"

175 Overland Routes to India,

143

259

31 Painters, Subjects for,

226

48
169

346

239

133

236

108, 189, 205, 212,

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4

20

44

77
125
253, 262
306
67, 74
109
21
308

191

396

166

296

318
69

May-Day,
Midsummer-Day,
Michaelmas-Day,
189
All-Hallow Even,
380
Christmas,
306 Popular Information on
381 Literature:-
366
317, 322
303

Eleventh article,
Twelfth Article,

3

60

251 Music,
276 Musical Education,

267 Napoleon, Early Days of,

284

368 Napoleon, Story of,
413 Natural History, Sketches in, 210, 220,
234, 275, 338, 378, 394
197 Natural History, Year-Book of, 175
272 Neapolitan Sketches,
375 School for Reclaiming Boys,
343 | Neuchatel,
196 Scottish Farmers,

Satires of Juvenal,

327

Neuwied

142 Scottish Tutor's First Situation,

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Picture Criticism,

Pictures and Painters,

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Newfoundland in 1842,

New Year's Eve in a Mad-house,
New Zealand and Australia,

New Zealand, Fourth Colony,

New Zealand in 1841,

Nicoll, Life of,

Nitrous Oxide,

·

364

406
112

106
Northern Collieries, 194, 202, 222, 250
414 Notes of a Half-Pay,
78
Notes of a Residence in the Bush, 173,
179, 188, 198, 204
23 Sketch of Pekin,
5, 36, 69, 84, Slave Hunts in Egypt,
260, 276, 364 Small Cottage Farms,
148 Small Country Newspapers,
294 Soldier, Story of,
331 Sophisms in Logic,

Spade Husbandry,

360
15

Spa, Leamington,
53 Spanish Slaver,
Spenser, T. Hall,

411

231 Sporting Sketch Book,

135 Stafford House,

Waterspouts,

Laughing-Gas,

5 Protection of Land from Storms,
316 Provision against the Evil Day,
119 Prussian Regularity,

396

271

179

136
390
the, 415
332
251, 258

167
95

86 Redding's "Cornwall,"

270

301

330

132

142

244 Round Towers of Ireland,

125 Russia, Captain Jesse on,

204 Sabretash, Captain Orlando, Jot-
tings from,

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Page

109 Predisposition to Bleedings,

45 Press, Favourite Phrases of the,
405 Progress of Vaccination,

Thirteenth article,

Popular Information on Literature:

English versification,

Popular Information on Science :-

117

292

336
96

Pirate, the,

Pleasant Proceedings at a Factory, 163

Pleasure Seeker, the,
Poets, Self Educated,
Poor-Law in Ireland,
Popular English Festivals:-

Candlemas Day,
Shrove Tuesday,
St Valentine's Day,
Mid-Lent Sunday,
Palm Sunday,

Good Friday,

36

134
295

299
151

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Puzzled Housewife,

Quack, the,

Palm Sunday,

Paper Money,

Pardoe's "Hungarian Castle,"
Parisian Incident,

218 Strasburg,

300 Sturge on the United States,

389 Subjects for Painters,

Past, Voice from the,
Pauper Lunatic Asylum,
Pedestrian Tour in Switzerland,

247

151 Subscription for Burns's Sister,
221, Sully,
228, 236, 251, 258, 276, 286, 301
Pekin, Sketch of,
214
412 Suspension Bridge of Friburg,
189

Sunrise amongst the Alps,
Surnames, English,

402
93 Pelisse-Maker, the Armenian,

53 Penny Postage, the,

Sutherland, Duchess of,

391

Performances of Dogs,
Periodicals, the,

173 Swain's Poems,
375

63

Philosophical Showman,

91

149

42

51

106

131

Influence of Colour on Heat
and Odour,
Ripple-Marks and Tracks of
Animals on Rock-Surfaces, 387
Practical Mathematics,
216

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Queer Case for the Law,

Quotations, Familiar,
Races, Map of,

Railway Directors, a Word to,
Railways and Steam-boats,
Railways, Continental,

93 Simple Story,

303 Shakers, the,

375

223

216

247

395
5

300
287

310

Recent Experiments in Manchester, 38
Recluse in the Country,

335
127
158

Riots of 1780,

Ripple-Marks on Rock-Surfaces, 387
Rival, the,

235

Roman Reckoning,

381

Ronsard,

149

406

78

358

398

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Seasons, Cycle of the,

Seminoles, Emigration of,

·

359 Shakspeare Hoax, the,

156 Sherwood Forester, Hall, the,

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Sanatory Condition of the Labour-
ing Population, 257, 266, 285, 293
Sanatory Reports, Jottings from
the,

254 Theories, Antiquarian,
195 Thomson on America,

414 | Thun,

Thurot,

Swiss Watchmakers,
Tales of the Jury Room,
Teachers, Screwing Down,
Temperance Coffee-Houses,
Temperance in Ireland,
Thames Tunnel,

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2 Valentine's Day,
Ventriloquism,
Versification,

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Trait of American Character,

Traits of an Antiquary,

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Ships Lost by Burning,

189

239

Should Boys Learn Latin?
Shrove Tuesday,

22

Sketches in Natural History, 210, 220,
234, 275, 338, 378, 394
214
3
87
47
347
35
229
93
271
6

62

20

69
45

Two Opinions,

Two Worlds, Review of the,
Typography, Improvements in,
Unterseen,

Vaccination, Progress of,

287

62 Steam Navigation of Great Britain, 80

328 Steam, Wonders of,

368
13
116
325
328
2
221

283

183
20
8
256
230

108

351

112

256
185
382
85

261

36
28
51
213
94
340
207, 372

Vevay,

Vigne on Upper India,
Voice from the Past,
"Voice of Jacob,"
Vulgar Hallucinations,
Wages, Time for Paying,
Wakes of Lancashire,
Watchmakers, Swiss,
Water, Action of, on Lead,
Waterspouts,

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115

237

294
248

21

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278

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370

170

407

334

237

212

148

187

208

263

47
383
213
86, 236
294
29
290
42

150

284
389
343
86, 102
36
346
256

402
51

1

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316 Crime during Fair Week in Glas-
407
gow,

408 Criminals in America,
236 Criminals, Exaltation of,
69 Crops, Rotation of,
213 Cunning of a Lunatic,
368 Daguerreotype Portraits,
134 Dannecker the Sculptor,
392 Deacons of the Old School,
176 Decision of Character,
53 Dew,

37, 52 Dog, Sympathy in the,
Drunkards, Punishment of,
Duelling in Reign of George III.,
Dulcimer, the,

Dull Talkers,

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240 Insolvent Negro,

280 Insolvent's Plea,

-

176 Intellectual Companions,

-

23

200 Potato, Uses of the,

96 Public Health,

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Dupes to Ourselves,

Dutch Laundresses,

Editor, a Backwoods,

280

Education in India,

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328 Education, Modern,

288 Elegant Young Lady,

320 Emigrant Family,

144 Enjoyments,

311 Enlightened Enterprise,

416 English Abroad,

160 English Aristocratic Education,

152 English Sailors,

280 English Society,

184 English Sport, French Ideas of,

136 English Street Dialogue,

400 Failure in Life, Cause of,

384 Female Beauty,

264 Female Heroism,

160 Figure Nine, Properties of the,
288 Fir Tops,

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24 Fitch, Poor John,

184 Flowers, How to Preserve,
48 Forgiveness,

391 Fossil Plants,

207 France, Cropping System in,

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272 France, Literature in,

304 Free Press, Benefit of a,

384 French Inventions,

88 French Ideas of English Sport,

176 French Labourers,

103 Gas Lighting,

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40 Intemperance in Steamers,

176 Irish Labourers in Paris,
"It is Vulgar,"

56 Jebb, Sir Richard,
360 Job for Younger Sons,
184 Jupiter, Taking Care of,
288 King's Cock-Crower, the
288 Labour a Blessing,
160 Ladies, Advice to,
120 Lard Oil,

56 Laundresses, Dutch,
264 Law of Wagers,
24 Lawyers,

304 Lawyers, Origin of,

240 Length of Days,

264 Literature in France,

232 Lodging-house Servants,
112 Lunatic, Cunning of,

232 Making a Mystery of Nothing,
240 Manchester, Gambling in,
272 Manners, American,

288 Mansions of Paris,

416 Manufacturing Old Pictures,
272 Manures,

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240

247

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72

232 Ruthven's Plan for Propelling
Steam-vessels,

384

192 Sailors, English,

264

96 Samaritans, Present State of the,

280

416 Sauce Piquante,

208

248 Schools in Athens,

216

136 Scott, Sir Walter,

400

408 Self-Esteem Piqued,

248

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208 Rotation of Crops,

360 Royal Etiquette in Spain,

360 Royal Prerogative,

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CONDUCTED BY WILLIAM AND ROBERT CHAMBERS, EDITORS OF “CHAMBERS'S INFORMATION FOR THE PEOPLE,” 66 CHAMBERS'S EDUCATIONAL COURSE," &c.

NUMBER 521.

COMICALITIES OF NATURE.

THERE are some objects in animated creation which irresistibly provoke a smile. It is different with inanimate nature, which is variously beautiful, sublime, tame, desolate, wild, or whatever else, but always respectable. There is nothing frisky in the characters of mountains or precipices, plains, lakes, rivers, or seas-unless, indeed, we are to make an exception for some little burns in our own northern land, which the imagination may very readily suppose to be of a tricksy, gambolsome humour, seeing with what deft antics they tumble and trip along their pebbly way, as if to amuse the gowans that ogle them as they pass, from the fairy-befooted sward. But, upon the whole, inorganic creation is not at all funny. Animated nature, on the contrary, presents to us an immense deal that we cannot help feeling to be so.

To begin with the next creatures below ourselvesthere are the monkeys, whose whole appearance and movements are grotesque. Who could ever look in the face of one of these animals without that same stirring of the risible faculties which we experience in perusing a caricature or parody, or witnessing a pantomime? The wretch never laughs itself, but its every gesture is provocative of mirth in us. See it taking care of one of its young, or allaying some temporary irritability in one of its sides, or inspecting any suspicious-looking morsel which may have been given to it, and the perfect whimsicality of the creature must be acknowledged. So thoroughly is this the case, that no one could ever speak of a monkey gravely the name is never mentioned without a smile or a laugh. The appearance of the sloth is ludicrous, but in a different way. "There," remarks Cuvier, "nature seems to have amused herself with producing something imperfect and grotesque." The mirth excited by this animal is of the derisive kind. We smile to see a miserable-looking creature crawling so abjectly, unable to use its fore-legs for support, and only able to move when it can get something to lay hold of, whereby to pull itself along. The sloth may be, as later naturalists allege, fully accomplished for all the ends of its being; yet it is not less true that, constituted as we are, we cannot help smiling at an object which strikes our minds as so uncouth.

So, also, the peculiar feature of the marsupial tribes is no doubt appropriate to the circumstances in which they live. Yet is it in the power of any human being to think of that feature with the same feelings as those with which, for instance, he would regard the gracile limb of the antelope, or the shaggy mane of the lion? To think of a creature having a pouch in which to carry her young family, and from which they may occasionally be seen peeping like so many juvenile bipeds from a huckster's panniers, is surely a most whimsical idea. Think of what a monstrous crime pocket-picking must appear to a female kangaroo with a charge of children. Australia presents another good living joke in her celebrated ornithorhyncus, where we see a creature like a rat, but a good deal larger, furnished with a duck's bill and webfeet-an association exactly of the same character with those which human conceit has occasionally formed for emblematical devices, or in the way of buffoonery.

Amongst the feathered tribes there are also numerous traces of comicality. The choler of the turkeycock never fails to excite mirth. Domesticated ravens come to enter into the humours of the families they live with, and sometimes prove amazingly funny. The whole race of parrots is amusing. Not altogether mechanical is that power they have of repeating droll VOL. XI No I.

SATURDAY, JANUARY 22, 1842.

|

expressions, under the instruction of human masters and mistresses. By timing their jokes, they often show that they enjoy them. This tribe, as well as the monkeys and mocking-birds, are unquestionably possessed of that same power of imitation which men employ to the excitement of mirth in mimicry and comic theatricals. The mocking-bird is the very Monsieur Alexandre of American ornithology. It can simulate the cry of almost all birds, and the name we give it expresses the purposes for which it employs the gift. One of its favourite waggeries, as is well known, is to gather other birds near it by imitating their cries, and then to disperse them, like a set of schoolboys at the approach of the master, by uttering the cry of the bird of which they stand most in fear. There are many whimsical things in the vegetable world, though the British Flora is perhaps a more serious goddess than some of her foreign sisters. If we go abroad, we shall find many quaint things in this department of nature. The broussonetia papyrifera of Japan and India, from which the article called India paper is made, has leaves all different in form, and each of which seems as if it had had a piece rent out of it, and as if it had been afterwards sewed up again to repair the damage. Here there is as complete an appearance of a familiar human action being imitated in nature, as there is in the junction of the duck's bill to the water-rat's body in the ornithorhyn

cus.

PRICE 14d.

curious, if not ludicrous, resemblances to other objects. The natural order Orchidaceae are remarkable for this property. The flower of the Oncidium papilio presents an extraordinary resemblance to a tortoise-shell butterfly, as that of the Phalaenopsis amabilis does to a white one. Peristeria pendula looks like a dove crouching in its nest, and Coryanthes micrantha resembles a skeleton's head, with the vertebræ of the neck, finished off with a pair of bat's wings!* The flower of the bee orchis is like a piece of honeycomb, and, strange to say, the bees delight in it. Then there is the snap-dragon, the corolla of which is cleft and turned back so as to look like a rabbit's mouth, especially if pinched on the sides, when the animal appears as if nibbling. If, in like manner, the two petals or nectaries of another well-known plant are pinched, they peep from under the coloured calyx, like two great eyes looking out under the cowl of a monk-hence its name of monk's-hood. The flower of the cock's-comb and seed-pod of the Mostynia proboscidea bear equally curious resemblances to the objects which have suggested their names. Some kinds of Medicago have also curious seed-pods, some being like bee-hives, some like caterpillars, and some like hedgehogs-the last being itself an essentially ludicrous natural object.

when it approaches a flowering state, a circlet of short brown fur appears round the summit, which gradually increases till it takes the very form and appearance of a lady's fur muff! Mr Lambert, the President of the Linnæan Society, has preserved in glass-cases, in his drawing-room, two specimens taken from full plants; and a person who has seen them reports to us, that one in particular, about eighteen inches high, precisely looks like an old sable muff. The flowers of the cactus senilis are crimson, and are produced in a ring. The reader may therefore judge what a curious figure our old gentleman plant cuts in his native woods, with his body all covered with long white hair, surmounted by a black muff, and above all a wreath of crimson flowers.

A certain grotesqueness of form belongs to the whole order of Cactaceae. The Cactus senilis would arrest the most unobservant eye in an exhibition of plants, by There is exactly that disarrangement of the the ludicrous peculiarity from which it derives its fibres of the leaf, and that appearance of puckering at name. Being simply a kind of stump, covered with the seam, which would be seen in a piece of checkered long white streaming hair, it exactly resembles the cloth, worn by a mendicant, which, having had a head of an old man! In its native country, this cactus narrow section taken out of it, had been hastily based puts on considerably different, but not less ludicrous, together without any regard to the joining of the appearances. It there grows to the height of ten or chequers or to smoothness of surface. The well-twelve, sometimes even to twenty or thirty, feet, and known fly-trap strikes the mind with all the effect of a joke. The leaf stands temptingly open; a poor fly pops in for shelter or food; no sooner has it set its foot on the bottom, than some sensitive fibres are affected, and the cilia at the top close in upon the intruder, empounding him as effectually as if a boy had taken him and closed him up in a box. The doings of a human economy are also curiously coincident with those of the pitcher-plant of the east. To the footstalk of each leaf of this plant, near the base, is attached a kind of bag, shaped like a pitcher, of the same consistence and colour as the leaf in the early state of its growth, but changing with age to a reddish purple. It is girt round with an oblique band or hoop, and covered with a lid neatly fitted, and moveable on a kind of hinge or strong fibre, which, passing over the handle, connects the vessel with the leaf. By the shrinking or contracting of this fibre, the lid is drawn open whenever the weather is showery, or dews fall, which would appear to be just the contrary of what usually happens in nature, though the contraction is probably occasioned by the hot and dry atmosphere, and the expansion does not take place till the moisture has fallen and saturated the pitcher. When this is the case, the cover falls down, and it closes so firmly as to prevent any evapo-gular stems, masses of green vegetable matter, decoration taking place. The water having gradually absorbed through the handle in the footstalk of the leaf, gives vigour to the leaf itself, and sustenance to the plant. As soon as the pitchers are exhausted, the lids again open, to admit whatever moisture may fall; and when the plant has produced its seed, and the dry season fairly sets in, it withers with all the covers of the pitchers standing open.*

There are some plants, the flowers of which bear

* This description of the pitcher-plant is from Barrow's Cochin China.

Our minds naturally recognise the tall straight stems of the beech and elm as elegant objects. The trunk of the oak is thick, but it conveys the idea of manly robustness and vigour. Most flowering plants in this country have elegant stalks, to which the flower parts are in general neatly and fittingly joined. We never think of smiling mirthfully at any of these objects, but, on the contrary, are disposed to regard them with a musing and serious admiration. How different are these cactuses, with their incomprehensible lumpy an

rated quaintly along the edges with prickles, while here and there a flower sticks out, looking as oddly placed as would a man's head if it projected from his side or stuck upon his knee. It is the Cactus speciosissimus which is so particularly liable to this description. To the dark crimson flowers which ornament its stem, succeeds the fruit, a thing which one would at first suppose to be an egg, till tasting it he would imagine it a gooseberry! In their native

*There is a figure of this flower in the Botanical Register, vol. xxii., but it gives no idea of the horrible grotesque of the living plant.

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whimsical in their forms, since long before there was
such a as the human mind to regard them either

in one light or another. We see jocularities and
merriments in animals which existed long before man,
and to which no moral error can be imputed. Finally,
we see man himself organised so thoroughly for mirth,
that his very health is liable to be improved by it."
Well, indeed, might Grecian imagination include
Thalia amongst the children of Jove.

country, they rise thirty or forty feet high, without a single branch or a single leaf, and it is generally upon the tops of mountains that they grow. Pæping, a German botanical traveller in Brazil, says that, in that country, a hill top bristling with the cactus speciosissimus, resembles nothing so much as a hog's back!

Then we have the creeping cereus (cereus flagelliformis), which looks like a number of cats' tails tied together, and hung over a flower-pot, with a few crimson flowers stuck into them irregularly. The spines with which these hanging stems are completely covered are what give them the cats' tail appearance: they have no leaves, but the tails are sometimes forked. The leaf cactus (Epiphyllum phyllanthoides) is of totally different but equally quaint form, the stems appearing to consist of a series of leaves stuck into each other, and having notches in the sides from which spring the flowers. The porcupine cactus (echinocactus) has a round ball-like stem, often with projecting angles like a lady's reticule, covered with hard sharp spines. The flowers of this genus appear thrown carelessly on the stem, and not to belong to it. We might expatiate upon the eccentricities of this order of plants for half a day, but shall content ourselves with adverting to that crowning conceit manifested by one of the family, of blowing in the middle of the night-emblem apt

and true of a certain class of whimsical mortals.

POPULAR INFORMATION ON FRENCH
LITERATURE.

ELEVENTH ARTICLE.-SULLY.

HAVING described the early warlike portion of Sully's
career, we now take him up as a grave and calculating
minister of state. The section of his Memoirs devoted
to this part of his history presents a picture of politi-
cal sagacity remarkable for that age, leaving us scarcely
senior, was often checked, when about to do a foolish
room to wonder that his royal master, though his
thing, by the consideration, "What will Sully say to
all this?" He commenced his career as a minister in
1594, in the capacity of secretary of state. Four years
after, he was appointed superintendant of finances,
having displayed as much ability in that department
as he had previously shown military fire and skill in
the time of war. Many important negotiations were
conducted by him. One is very remarkable, as show-
ing the liberties which Sully took with the king, and the
his master, had given a rash and unworthy promise
state of feeling existing between the two. The king,
of marriage in one of his fits of passion. Sully was
confidence consulted by Henry. On reading the
document, he slowly and gravely tore it in pieces.
"Are you mad?" cried the infuriated monarch.
"Yes," answered Sully, “I am mad, sire, and I wish
I were the only madman in France!" Sully's firm-
ness had the result of making Henry enter into a
marriage with the person whose alliance in those times
was best suited to the exigencies of the state. As
regards mutual liking and individual feelings, these
are seldom held of consequence in such affairs.

The many important negotiations in which Sully
was engaged at home, exclusively of mere financial
affairs, had reference chiefly to the maintenance of
the Protestant interests, and to the suppression of
the petty feudal sovereigns yet existing in France,
and possessing sufficient power to brave and embarrass

their liege lord. It was through the able management
of matters in Henry's days, that this anomalous and
perilous state of things was brought to an end, and
the real authority lodged in the hands of a single
monarch. Besides aiding his master powerfully in
such domestic concerns, Sully was employed in many
foreign missions and negotiations. As ambassador
from Henry, he had a confidential interview with
Queen Elizabeth at Dover in 1601; and two years
afterwards, he went to London on a mission to her
successor, James I. Of the account given of the latter
visit, we shall present some incidental snatches.

Every one has heard of lusus natura-sports of na-in
ture-things which she was supposed to produce in
the way of freak, and as exceptions from her ordinary
laws. Fossil shells, for example, were considered as
lusus naturæ, no one being able to understand how, if
they had been originally real shells of marine molluscs,
they could ever have got into those deep-seated rocks
where they were found embedded. It is now believed
that there are no such things as lusus naturæ, every
one of her organic creations being formed after a dis-
tinct type, and designed for a particular purpose in
creation, just as there is no character used in a printed
book but what there is a type for in the compositor's
case, and is liable to appear accordingly in other printed
books of the same language. The true sports of na-
ture are to be seen in the many grotesque forms of
her legitimate and recognised children, animals and
plants, and in the whimsical powers and properties
which she has assigned to many of at least the former
class. With regard to grotesque forms in plants and
animals, it may be said that these things are perhaps
not absolutely grotesque, and that it is only in conse-
quence of some law of our minds that we think them
so. This, we conceive, may be the case without in
the least detracting from the force of what has been
Sully, whose instructions chiefly related to the con-
said; for how can we judge of any thing but by virtue junction of France and England against the Spanish
of and in accordance with the habits of our minds? interests, found at Calais the vice-admirals of France,
Undoubtedly, if the cheek of the fair young maiden Holland, and England, all of them anxious for the
affects us with the sense of beauty, as truly does the honour of conveying him across the channel. By way
figure of the Barbary ape affect us with the sense of of a compliment, he accepted the seemingly courteous
comicality. So, also, of the powers and properties of offer of the English, and his going on board led to re-
many animals. The chatter of the parrot, the strut sults which prove that the English sailors of that day
and crow of the cock, the wretched bray of the ass, the were just the English sailors of the present. The
capers of the young goat, and the pranks of the kitten, French admiral, "De Vic, who only sought an oppor-
all affect us with the same risibility as the humour of a tunity of showing the English his resentment of the
Mathews or the wit of a Sheridan. To come finally violences committed by their pirates, advancing, bear-
to man, he has been endowed with both the power ing the French flag on his maintop-gallant mast, I
of creating mirth and the power of enjoying it. found these complaisant English were enraged at an
He has a faculty of the ludicrous in his mental offence which, according to them, was equally injuri-
organisation, and muscles in the face whereby to ex- ous to the King of England, and the King of France,
press the sensation in its well-known form of laughter. whom I represented; and I had reason to think them
Some are born with such a predominance of the still more rude and impolite, when, without deigning
ludicrous in their nature, and such wonderful powers to consult me, fifty shot were immediately fired into
of awakening risibility in their fellow-creatures, as to De Vic's ship." Sully thought it wise to explain that
seem to have been mainly designed, as far as the the flag was raised in honour of Henry's ambassador;
worldly utility of their existence is concerned, for this and he also deemed it prudent to make a signal for its
purpose. This is a class of men particularly apt at being lowered, which was done just in time, as appears
perceiving the comicalities of the lower animal and from another broadside having been prepared by the
vegetable worlds. While others see only what is English, which they fired at "random." Sully and his
painful and melancholy in the scene around them, extensive suite, notwithstanding this untoward open-
they are conscious only of what is merry and ridi- ing incident, were received with great honours at
culous, and spend the part of their lives that is devoted Dover, whence they went by land to Gravesend, and,
to common sensation in a constant flow of self-gene-entering a rich royal barge, sailed up the Thames.
rated humour.
The Tower gave him a salute of three thousand guns,
the finest thing of the kind (he says) that he had ever
heard. He had scarcely reached London, and taken
up a temporary residence in a house there, when an-
other untoward business occurred, of which he gives

an account.

We would fain, from all that has been said, establish the importance of the comical in the mundane economy. It seems to us that it cannot be necessarily a reprehensible frivolity-to however absurd purposes it may be occasionally perverted--when we see traces of it springing directly from the common Origin of all things. Time and place may be necessary for its proper development amongst assembled human beings, but this is no more than what may be said of all things There is a time to laugh and a time to weep. Man, it is true, in his blind zeal for what his higher sentiments dictate, has sometimes acted as if to smile were a sin. He has, strange to say, thought that an invariable gloom and sadness was the proper habit of mind in which to live, as being more agreeable to the Deity. But when we look into the book of nature, we see these ideas completely contradicted. We there find types of being which must have been grotesque and

His people went out to houses of entertainment, and "at the same place they met with some English, with whom they quarrelled, fought, and one of the English was killed. The populace, who were before prejudiced against us, being excited by the family of the deceased, who was a substantial citizen, assembled, and began loudly to threaten revenge upon all the French, even in their lodgings. The affair soon began to appear of great consequence, for the number of people assembled upon the occasion was presently

* Dr Hufeland of Berlin has expressed his opinion that light merriment is good for digestion.

increased to upwards of three thousand, which obliged
the French to fly for an asylum into the house of the

ambassador. I at last imagined something extraor-
dinary had happened, and having questioned Terrail
and Gadancourt, they informed me of the particulars.

The honour of my nation, my own in particular,
and the interest of my negotiation, were the first ob-
jects that presented themselves to my mind. I was
also most sensibly grieved that my entry into London
should be marked at the beginning by so fatal an acci-
dent; and at that moment, I am persuaded, my coun-
tenance plainly expressed the sentiments with which
I was agitated. Guided by my first impulse, I arose,
took a flambeau, and ordering all that were in the
selves round the walls, hoped by this means to dis-
house (amounting to about a hundred) to range them-
cover the murderer, which I did without any difficulty
by his agitation and fear. Ile was for denying it at
first, but I soon obliged him to confess the truth. He
was a young man, and the son of the Sieur de Com-
baut, principal examiner in Chancery, very rich, and
a kinsman likewise of Beaumont, who entering at
that moment, desired me to give young Combaut into
his hands, that he might endeavour to save him. "I
do not wonder,' replied I to Beaumont, with an air of
authority and indignation, that the English and you
are at variance, if you are capable of preferring the
interest of yourself and your relations to that of the
king and the public; but the service of the king my
master, and the safety of so many gentlemen of good
families, shall not suffer for such an imprudent strip-
Combaut should be beheaded in a few minutes. How,
ling as this.' I told Beaumont, in plain terms, that
sir,' cried Beaumont, behead a kinsman of mine, pos-
sessed of two hundred thousand crowns, an only son !
it is but an ill recompense for the trouble he has
given himself, and the expense he has been at to ac-
company you.' I again replied, in as positive a tone,
I had no occasion for such company; and, to be
short, I desired Beaumont to quit my apartment, for
I thought it would be improper to have him present
in the council, which I intended to hold immediately,
in order to pronounce sentence of death upon Com-

(

baut.

In this council I made choice only of the oldest and the wisest of my retinue; and the affair being presently determined, I sent Arnaud to inform the mayor of London of it, and to desire him to have his officers ready the next day, to conduct the culprit to the place of execution, and to have the executioner there ready

to receive him."

66

The mayor, however, to whose justice Sully finally delivered the culprit, let him escape at the instance of the relative, and, satisfied with Sully, the people seem to have done nothing further in the matter. Justice, it would seem, had not then come to the state in which Oliver Cromwell placed it, when Don Pontoleon Sa, the very brother of the Portuguese ambassador, was sent to the scaffold by the stern Protector, in spite of all entreaties, individual and national. Sully is induced by what passed on this occasion to give the following picture of our nation-not a very Hattering one, but tinged to some extent with truth. It is certain that the English hate us, and this hatred is so general and inveterate, that one would almost be tempted to number it among their natural dispositions: it is undoubtedly an effect of their arrogance and pride, for no nation in Europe is more haughty and insolent, nor more conceited of its superior excellence. Were they to be believed, understanding and common sense are to be found only among them: they are obstinately wedded to all their own opinions, and despise those of every other nation; and to hear others, or suspect themselves, is what never enters into their thoughts. Their self-love renders them slaves to all their capricious humours. What they at one time believe to have wisely performed, or firmly resolved, is at another time destroyed without their knowing, or being able to give a reason: they are accordingly so undetermined in themselves, that frequently one would not take them for the same persons, and from hence they themselves sometimes appear surprised on perceiving their own continued irresolution. If we examine what are called their maxims of state, we shall discover in them only the laws of pride itself, adopted by arrogance or indolence." Admitting the correctness of the charge of national vanity, we must observe that Sully's national prejudice has prevented him from seeing that it is probably in a great measure to this belief in our superiority that we owe our actual greatness in arms and

arts.

Sully's account of accidental particulars connected with his embassy, is much more interesting than his description of his interviews with James I., of whose personal demeanour he says little. Their first meeting, however, must have been striking. Sully, attended by one hundred and twenty selected gentlemen of his large suite, and a party of the royal guards, went to see the king at Greenwich. "His majesty having sent to desire my appearance in his presence, I was above a quarter of an hour before I could get to the foot of his throne, occasioned both by the great numbers that were already there, and because I made all my retinue walk before me. The prince no sooner perceived me than he descended two steps, and would have descended them all, so very desirous he appeared to receive and embrace me, had not one of his ministers, who stood next him, whispered softly in his ear that he ought to go no farther. If,' said he aloud, ‘I

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