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and night, light and darkness; and one round the sun, which takes place every 365 days, and forms our year. The former is called its ' diurnal and the latter its' annual motion.
As to the motion of the earth may be referred the day and night, so to the position of the earth’s 5 axis, may be referred the various seasons of the year.
The axis on which the earth is assumed to turn, is inclined 231° to the plane of its orbit. Hence during one part of the earth's course round the sun, the north pole is turned from that ? luminary, making our winter; while at another time it is turned towards him, and gives summer. When the earth is midway between these points in its course, it forms spring and autumn.
In parts situate between the tropics, there are but two seasons, the dry or summer season, and the wet or winter season, in which, heavy torrents of rain fall for weeks together.
In high northern latitudes there are also but two seasons in the year,--a winter of nine months, through which frost and snow suspend the operations of nature ; and a short summer of three months, in which, however, vegetation shoots into perfection so rapidly, that all the necessary operations of budding, blossoming, fructification, and the shedding of the seed, are performed in about a third part of the time taken in climates where the warmth is of longer duration.
1. Vide Root. 2. A man five feet six inches high on the sea shore, cannot see the surface more than three miles distant. 3. This was discovered in consequence of pendulums being observed to requiry longer time to perform their vibrations as they approached the equator; for being farther from the centre of the earth, the attraction is least at the equator. This is since confirmed by measurements and calculations. 4. Thus, when noon at London, it is six o'clock in the afternoon at Calcutta, because it is ninety degrees east, whilst at the same moment it is six o'clock in the morning at New Orleans. 5. This refers to an imaginary straight line between the two poles. Ô. Then the sun is directly over the equator, giving equal length of day and vight to all the world, in March and September.
Saron and Danish Kings. In the year 827 of the Christian 'era, all the seven * kingdoms of the Saxon Heptarchy were 'united into one under the government of Egbert. He was therefore the first king of England.
Egbert was a native of England, but had been 'educated in France, at the court of 3 Charlemagne. He was therefore more polished and 'enlightened than most of the Saxon kings. During the reign of Egbert, and for many years afterwards, the Danes made 'incursions into England. They sometimes overran the whole country.
Alfred, who ascended the throne in 872, fought fifty-six battles with them by sea and land. On one occasion, he went into the camp of the Danes in the disguise of a barper. He took notice of every thing, and planned an attack upon the camp. Returning to his own men, he led them against the Danes, whom he completely 'routed.
This king was called Alfred the Great; and he had a better right to the epithet of Great than most other kings who have borne it. He made wise laws, and instituted the custom of trial by 5 jury. He likewise founded the university of Oxford.
At this time the people of England were divided into three classes. The noblemen were called Thanes, the freemen were called Ceorls, but the greater number were called Villains, because they lived in villages belonging to the thanes, and were slaves.
1. Vide Root. 2. Cantia, or Kent, founded in the year 457 ; South Saxony, (Sussex and Surrey) 490 ; West Saxony, or Wessex, (Hampshire, Berks, Wills, Dorset, Somerset, and Devonshire,)519; East Saxony, (Essex and Middlesex,) 527 ; Northumbria, (north of the Humber,) 547; East Anglia, (Norfolk, Suffolk, Carn. bridge,) 575; Mercia, (Middle Counties,) 582. 3. Charles the Great, pron. Sharl. main. 4. At Eddington in Wiltshire, 880. 5. By twelve men or more, in the same rank of life ;--valued as a protection against injustice. 6. On account of lis piety. Martyr, one who dies for religion ; Confessor, usually applied to one who suffers torture, loss, or other persecution.
All the people were at this time very ignorant. None but the clergy could write, and not many of them. Alfred made Dinewulph, the shepherd who concealed him in his cottage, in the island of Athelney, when the Danes overran the country, Bishop of Winchester. But although Alfred made so ignorant a man a bishop, yet he very much encouraged learning, and studied eight hours daily when not engaged in war.
Nearly a hundred years after his death, the Danes again invaded England. There was now no king like Alfred to 'oppose them--they were accordingly victorious, and three Danish kings governed the country in succession.
In the year 1041, the Danes were subdued, and another Saxon king, called Edward the Confessor, was placed upon the throne. At his death, Harold, who was also a Saxon, became king.
But he was the last of the Saxon kings. No sooner had he mounted the throne, than William, 'duke of Normandy in France, 'invaded England, at the head of sixty thousand men.
Harold led an army of Saxons against the Norman invaders, and fought with them at Hastings. In the inidst of the battle, an arrow was shot through his steel helmet, and "penetrated his brain. The duke of Normandy gained the victory, and became king of England.
GEOGRAPHICAL AND CHRONOLOGICAL.- Find on the map of Europe,-England,
France, Denmark, Saxony, and Normandy. Trace the outline of England, and note the forty counties into which it is divided. Trace the boundaries of the seven kingdoms of the Heptarchy. Draw the five principal rivers,-the Severn, Mersey, Humber, Trent, and Thames,
and write the names of the rivers which flow into each of them. Ethelwulph. ... 836 i Edmund I..... 941 | Canute ..... 1014 Ethelbald ...857 Edred ..... 947 Edmund II. ...1016 Ethelbert .... 860 | Edwin ..... 955 | Canyte the Great . 2017 Ethelred..... 866 | Edgar ..... 959 Harold ..... 1036 Alfred the Great . . 871 Edward II. .. 975 Hardicanute ... 1039 Edward I. .,.. 901 Ethelred II. ... 978 Edward III. ... 1041 Atbelstau .... 925 Sweyn ..... 1012 ! Harola II. , ... 1065
Mountains. MOUNTAINS are among the grandest and most striking features of the globe. Nothing is more magnificent than an 'extensive range of lofty mountains, the summits of which, clothed with the snow of ages, rise into the clouds.
The most general view of mountain a systems shows us a vast mountainous ?zone, almost completely surrounding the basin of the great Pacific Ocean. Rising from the southern extremity of South America, the lofty rampart of the Andes extends along the western coast of America at no great distance from the ocean, through a length of nine thousand miles, and sweeping round in a semicircle through Asia, a continuation of the same great barrier, under the various names of the Altai, Himalaya, and Taurus, crowns the summit of the declivity down which the great Asiatic rivers descend into the ocean. The Caucasus, the Carpathian, and the Alpine chains, are a prolongation through Europe of this colossal girdle.3
In mountains are found the sources of rivers; hence elevated countries have in general the most numerous streams. Many rivers, the offspring of the Alps, 'pervade Switzerland; while Denmark, a flat and level country, has only a few streams. As rivers ?originate in the high grounds, so their course is determined by that of the elevations which give them birth, and from which the fabled genius of the mountains may be said to 'dispense and direct the 'fuid wealth which enriches various countries.
The surface of mountains is sometimes barren, and sometimes clothed with rich and extensive forests, while the interior abounds in mineral wealth. Whilst the forests of pine on the Dolfrine chain in Norway and Sweden,
supply fuel for the people of these cold regions, and timber for the south and centre of Europe, the finest iron is extracted from the interior; and it is from the mountains of America that Europeans "derive the gold and silver which 'administer to their wants and luxuries, and too often 'excite their avarice.
Low countries are also nourished by the substance of mountains. The rivers which descend from the elevations bring with them the lighter matter, and depositing it on the warmer because lower grounds, enrich the land. Even the snow which 'invests the tops and sides of mountains with its fleecy mantle, administers to the profit and enjoyment of man. The snows of Etna and Vesuvius form an article of 'commerce among the Italians, who purchase the cool and refreshing luxury to allay the effects of a warm climate.
Chains of mountains, by arresting 'currents of air in their lower atmosphere, change their direction, and by thus increasing their violence, 'produce storms; but they also afford warmth by sheltering the valley which they
enclose. The valley of Cashmere, which is encircled by mountains, has, from its luxuriance, been called the paradise of Asia.
Mountains are the asylum of independence, and the cradle of heroic enterprise ; they are the fortifications raised by nature for the protection of freedom and the safety of her sons. It was in the bosom of their mountains that the Swiss withstood the 'oppression of Austria, and secured liberty for Helvetia; and in the mountains of Cambria the ancient Britons long " resisted, first their Roman and then their Saxon ' aggressors.
1. Vide Root. 2. A group of mountains is a collection of several chains; a system of mountains is a collection of groups. 3. Trace the ranges of mountains mentioned in this paragraph, and write the names of the chains which run from them. See also the Appendix.