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without a light, ilie better to surprise them. Then, with his naked broadsword in his hand, he suddenly opened the door, and shut it after him, and fell to cutting and slashing all round about him, till, at last, by an opposition to the edge of his sword, he concluded he had at least wounded one of them. But I should have told you, that although the place was very dark, yet he made no doubt, by the glare and flashes of their eyes, that they were cats; but, upon the appearance of a candle, they were all vanished, and only some blood left upon the floor. I cannot forbear to hint in this place at Don Quixote's battle with the borachiot of wine.
There was an old woman, that lived about two miles from the laird's habitation, reputed to be a witch: her he greatly suspected to be one of the confederacy, and immediately he hasted away to her hut; and, entering, he found her lying upon her bed, and bleeding excessively.
This alone was some confirmation of the justness of his suspicion; but casting his eye under the bed, there lay her leg in its natural form.
I must confess I was amazed at the conclusion of this narration; but ten times more, when, with the most serious air, he assured me that he had seen a certificate of the truth of it, signed by four ministers of that part of the country, and could procure me a sight of it in a few days, if I had the curiosity to see it.
When he had finished his story, I used all the arguments I was master of, to show him the absurdity of supposing that a woman could be transformed into the shape and diminutive substance of a cat; to vanish like a flash of fire; carry her leg home with her, &c.: and I told him, that if a certificate of Cie truth of it had been signed by every member of the general assembly, it would be impossible for me (however strong my inclinations were to believe) to bring my mind to assent to it.
many parts as you think fit, in the manner of a carpenter's rule: lay across the top of this another piece of wood, marked G with a small wheel, or pulley, at each end thereof, marked C D; they should b« so fixed that a fine thread of silk may easily run through each of them: at the end or this thread, E, tie a small weight, or poise, and tie the other end of the thread, F, lo the tip-top of the plant, as represented Iu the figure.
To the Editor of the Every-Day Book.
As a small matter of use and curiosity, 1 beg to acquaint the readers of the Every-Day Book with the means of determining the gradual increase of a plant.
Take a straight piece of wood, of a con venicnt height; the upright piece, -narked A B in the figure, may be divided .nto as
To find the daily increase of this plant, observe to what degree the knot F rises every day, at a particular hour, or to what degree the ball E descends every day.
This little machine may serve several good purposes. By this you will be able to judge how much nourishment a plant receives in the course of each day, and a tolerably just notion may be formed of its quality; for moist plants grow quicker than dry ones, and the hot and moist quicker than the cold and dry, I am, sir, Your constant reader, S. Thomas.
January 24th, 1826.
To the Editor of the Every-Day Book. Sir,
Perhaps the following parody of Moore's beautiful melody, "Those Evening Bells," on p. 143, may be acceptable to your readers, at a time like the present, when a laugh helps out the spirits against matter-of-fact evils.
I do not think it necessary to avow myself as an "authority" for my little communication; many of your readers will, no doubt, be able to furnish feeling evidence of the truth of the lines. Hoping you, sir, may read them without participating in the lively /sensibility that the author felt, I remain,
Your admiring reader,
A SMALL Bin iK SI I i Fr!
City, Jan. 1826.
"Thete Christmas BilU.'"
A COMMERCIAL MELODY, 1826.
These Christinas hills, these Christum* bills,
Those golden days are past away,
And so 'twill be—though these are paid.
COPY OF A LETTER
The cheerfulness and readiness with which you have always served me, has maJe me interested in your welfare, and determined me to give you a few words of advice before we part. Read this attentively, and keep it; it may, perhaps, be useful.
Your honesty and principles are, I firmly trust, unshaken. Consider them as the greatest treasure a human being can possess. While this treasure is in your possession you can never be hurt, let what will happen. You will indeed often feel pain and grief, for no human oeing ever was without his share of them; out you can never be long and completely miserable but by your own fault.
If, therefore, you are ever tempted to do evil, check the first wicked thought that rises in your mind, or else you are ruined. For you may look upon this as a most certain and infallible truth, that if evil thoughts are for a moment encouraged, evil deeds follow: and you need not be told, that whoever has lost his good conscience is miserable, however he may hide it from the world, and whatever wealth and pleasures he may enjoy.
And you may also rely upon this, that the most miserable among the virtuous is
infinitely happier than the happiest of the wicked.
The consequence I wish you to draw from all this is, never to do any thing except what you certainly know to be right; for if you doubt about the lawfulness ot any thing, it is a sign that it ought not to be done.
Mean Temperature . .. 40' 32.
On the 4th of February, 1800, the rev William Tnsker, remarkable for his lcai >■ ing and eccentricity, died, aged 60, ul Iddesleigh, in Devonshire, of which church he was rector near thirty yeais, though he had not enjoyed the income ot the living till within five years before his death, in consequence of merciless and severe persecutions and litigations. "An Ode to the Warlike Genius of Britain, 1778," 4to., was the first effusion of his poetical talent. His translations of " Select Odes of Pinaar and Horace " add to his reputation with the muses, whose smiles he courted by many miscellaneous efforts. He wrote "Arviragus,'' a tragedy, and employed the last years of his checkered life on a "History of Physiognomy from Aristotle to La\ater," wherein he illustrated the Greek philosopher's knowledge of the subject in a manner similar to that which he pursued in "An Attempt to examine the several Wounds and Deaths of the Heroes in the Iliad and jtneid, trying them by the Test of Anatomy and Physiology." These erudite dissertations contributed to his credit with the learned, but added nothing to his means of existence. He usually wore a ragged coat, the shirt peeping at the elbows, and shoes of a brownish black, sometimes tied with packthread. Having heard that his spirited "Ode to the Warlike Genius of Britain" had been lead by the late king, George III., he presented himself, in his customary habit, on the es • planade at Weymouth, where it excited curiosity; and his majesty asking an attendant who that person was? Mr. Tasker approached, avowed his name, and obtained a gratifying reception. His productions evince critical skill, and a large portion of poetic furor. But ha was af
flicted and unsuccessful; frequently struggling with penury, and sometimes with oppression. His irritability subjected him to numerous mortifications, and inflicted on him many pangs unknown to minds of less feeling or less delicacy.
Mr. Nichols, in his "Literary Anecdotes," gives a letter he received from Mr. Tasker, dated from Iddesleigh, in December, 1798, wherein he says, "I continue in very ill health, and confined in my dreary situation at Starvation Hall, forty miles below Exeter, out of the verge of literature, and where even your extensive magazine ['The Gentleman's'] has never yet reached." The works he put forth from his solitude procured him no advancement in the church, and, in the agony of an excruciating complaint, he departed from a world insensible to his merits:—his widow essayed the publication of his works by subsciiption without effect. Such was the fate of an erudite and deserving parish priest, whose right estimation of honourable independence barred him from stooping to the meanness of flattery; he preserved his self-respect, and died without preferment, and in poverty.
The Old Lady.
If the Old Lady is a widow and lives alone, the manners of her condition and time of life are so much the more apparent. She generally dresses in plain silks that make a gentle rustling as she moves about the silence of her room; and she wears a nice cap with a lace border that comes under the chin. In a placket at her side is an old enamelled watch, unless it is locked up in a drawer of her toilet for fear of accidents. Her waist is rather tight and trim than otherwise, as she had a fine one when young; and she is not sorry if you see a pair of her stockings on a table, that you may be aware of the neatness of her leg and foot. Contented with these and other evident indications of a good shape, and letting her young friends understand that she can afford to obscure it a little, she wears pockets, and uses them well too. In the one is her handkerchief, and any heavier matter that is not likely to come out with it, such as the change of a sixpence;—in the other is a miscellaneous assortment, consisting of a pocket-book, a bunch of keys, a needlecase, a spectacle-case, crumbs of biscuit,
a nutmeg and grater, a smelling-bottle, and according to the season, an or.ingeor apple, which, after many days, she draws out, warm and glossy, to give to some little child that has well behaved itself. She generally occupies two rooms, in the neatest condition possible. In the chamber is a bed with a white coverlet, built up high and round to look well, and with cur tains of a pastoral pattern, consisting alternately of large plants, and shepherds and shepherdesses. Ou the mantlepiece also are more shepherds and shepherdesses, with dol-eyed sheep at their feet, all in coloured ware, the man perhaps in a pink jacket and knots of ribbons at his knees and shoes, holding his crook lightly in one hand, and with the other at his breast turning his toes out and looking tenderly at the shepherdess: —the woman, holding a crook also, and modestly returning his look, with a gipsy-hat jerked up behind, a very slender waist, with petticoat and hips to counteract, and the petticoat pulled up through the pocket-holes in order to show the trimness of her ancles. But these patterns, of course, are various. The toilet is ancient, carved at the edees, and tied about with a snow-white drapery of muslin. Beside it are various boxes, mostly japan: and the set of drawers are exquisite things for a little girl to rummage, if ever little girl be so bold,—containing ribbons and laces of various kinds,—linen smelling of lavender, of the flowers of which there is always dust in the corners,—a heap of pocket-books for a series of years,— and pieces of dress long gone by, such as head-fronts, stomachers, and flowered satin shoes with enormous heels. The stock of letters are always under especial lock and key. So much for the bed-room. In the sitting-room, is rather a spare assortment of shining old mahogany furniture, or carved arm-chairs equally old, with chintz draperies down to the ground,—a folding or other screen with Chinese figures, their round, little-eyed, meek faces perking sidewise ;—a stuffed bird perhaps in a glass case (a living one is too much for her;)— a portrait of her husband over the mantlepiece, in a coat with frog-buttons, and a delicate frilled hand lightly inserted in the waistcoat:—and opposite him, on the wall, is a piece of embroidered literature, framed and glazed, containing some moral distich or maxim worked in angular capital letters, with two trees or parrots below in their proper colours, the whole con
eluding with an A BC and numerals, and the name of the fair industrious, expressing it to be "her work, Jan. 14, 1762." The rest of the furniture consists of a looking-glass with carved edges, perhaps a settee, a hassock for the feet, a mat for the little dog, and a small set of shelves, in which are the Spectator and Guardian, the Turkish Spy, a Bible and Prayer-book, Young's Night-Thoughts, with a piece of lace in it to flatten, Mrs. Rowe's Devout Exercises of the Heart, Mrs. Glasse's Cookery, and perhaps Sir Charles Grandison, and Clarissa. John Buncle is in the closet among the pickles and preserves. The clock is on the landing-place between the two room-doors, where it ticks audibly but quietly; and the landing-place, as well as the stairs, is carpeted to a nicety. The house is most in character, and properly coeval, if it is in a retired suburb, and strongly built, with wainscot rather tnan paper inside, and lockers in the windows. Before the windows also should be some quivering poplars. Here the Old Lady receives a few quiet visitors to tea and perhaps an early game at cards; or you may sometimes see her going out on the same kind of visit herself, with a light umbrella turning up into a stick and crooked ivory handle, and her little dog equally famous for his love to her and captious antipathy to strangers. Her grandchildren dislike him on holidays; and the boldest sometimes ventures to give him a sly kick under the table. When she returns at night, she appears, if the weather happens to be doubtful, in a calash; and her servant, in pattens, follows half behind and half at her side, with a lantern.
Her opinions are not many, nor new. She thinks the cleigyman a nice man. The duke of Wellington, in her opinion, is a very great man; but she has a secret preference for the marquis of Granby. She thinks the young women of the present day too forward, and the men not respectful enough: but hopes her grandchildren will be better; though she differs *ith her daughter in several points respecting their management. She sets little value on the new accomplishments: is a great though delicate connoisseur in butcher's meat and all sorts of housewifery: and if you mention waltzes, expatiates on the grace and fine breeding of the minuet. She longs to have seen one danced by sir Charles Grandison, whom she almost considers as a real person. She
likes a walk of a summer's evening, but avoids the new streets, canals, &c. and sometimes goes through the church-yard where her other children and her husband lie buried, serious, but not melancholy She has had three great teras in her life,— her marriage,—her having been at court to see the king, queen, and royal family,— and a compliment on her figure she once received in passing from Mr. Wilkes, whom she describes as a sad loose man, but engaging. His plainness she thinks much exaggerated. If any thing takes her at a distance from home, it is still the court; but she seldom stirs even for that. The last time but one that she went was to see the duke of Wirtemberg: and she has lately been, most probably for the last time of all, to see the princess Charlotte and prince Leopold. From this beatific vision, she returned with the same admiration as ever for the fine comely appearance of the duke of York and the rest of the family, and great delight at having had a near view of the princess, whom she speaks of with smiling pomp and lifted mittens, clasping them as passionately as she can together, and calling her, in a sort of transport of mixed loyalty and self-love, a fine royal young creature, and daughter of England.—Indicator.
Sudden storms of short duration, tli> last blusters of expiring winter, frequently occur during the early part of the present month. These gales and gusts are mostly noticed by mariners, who expect them, and therefore keep a good "look out for squalls." The observations of seamen upon the clouds, and of husbandmen on the natural appearances of the weather generally, would form an exceedingly curious and useful compendium of meteorological facts.
Stilling the Sea with Oil.
Dr. Franklin suggests the pouring of oil on the sea to still the waves in a storm, but, before he lived, Martin wrote an "Account of the Western Islands of Scotland," wherein he says, "Thesteward of Hilda, who lives in Pabbay, is accustomed in time of a storm to tie a bundle of puddings, made of the fat of sea-fowl, to the end of his cable, and lets it fall into the sea behind the rudder; this, he says, hinders the waves from bieaking, and calms the sear but the scent of the grease attracts the whales, which put the vessel in danger."
Srotone WORte, esq. ££• 9.
A Doctor in Antiquity was he,
And Tyson lined his head, as now you see.
Kind, good "collector 1" why " collect" that storm?
No rude attempt is made to mar his form;
No alteration 's aim'd at here—for, though
The artist's touch has help'd to make it show,
The meagre contour only is supplied—
Is it improved ?—compare, and then decide.
Had Tyson, " from the life," Browne Willis sketch'd,
And left him, like old. Jacob Butler.^ etch'd,
This essay had not been, to better trace
The only likeness of an honour'd face. •
The present engraving, however un- picture painted by Dahl. There is .-.o
winning its aspect as to drawing, is, in other portrait of "the great original" put*
Mher respects, an improvement of the lished. ate Mr. Michael Tyson's etching from a