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Months passed on, and Mr. and Mrs. Wilmot noticed with pleasure, what an altered little boy their John Wilmot had become; the seeds and flowers his mamma gave him came up, and his little garden became quite tidy and pretty; and he appeared to recollect his papa's advice about curiosity, for he was always asking his mamma questions, and never forgot her answers. He frequently repeated them to his sister Emma.
An evident impression had been made upon our little friend, John Wilmot, by the events of the last Christmas eve; on no one occasion had Mr. W. to bring the matter to John's mind. He was now noticed just as much for his immediate attention to all that was told him, as formerly he had been for his obstinacy and passion.
Many were the nice walks Mrs. Wilmot now took John and Emma, as the summer advanced, on account of their being such good children. On one occasion they went to Bidston-hill, up to the lighthouse, from whence their mamma pointed out to them the Welsh mountains, and the sea : and a fine game the children had running about among the beautiful heath, nearly as high as themselves, and getting home very tired, just in time to meet their papa, and tell him all the pretty objects they had seen.
Thus autumn passed away and winter came again, and our little friends, the Wilmots, were again preparing for Christmas, and were thinking of the several cousins who were to visit them on the following day, when, who should come in but their papa, and with just such another parcel as he had on the last Christmas day.
Many were the recollections this little circumstance called up in the minds of all, especially little John.
“ Well, John," at last, said his papa, “I have been a pleased witness of the way you have kept your promise of amendment since this time last year. I have in consequence now brought you home another magic-lantern; and when you, to-morrow, are seeing your young friends enjoy the beauty of the views, you will reflect, I am sure, with pleasure and satisfaction on what I formerly told you, that although disobedience will always sooner or later bring its punishment and suffering; so obedience and good conduct must in like manner always bring its reward.
VI HIS has been called, by the poet Montgomery,
“The Morning Star of Flowers," because it is the first, or almost the first,
that springs up amid the gloom and desolation of winter, to tell us of the approach of a brighter and more pleasant season. We know, when the Snowdrop appears above the earth, and swings its delicate bells to and fro, as
the rude blasts go sweeping over the bare garden plot, that ere many weeks have passed, we shall have other of the beautiful blossoms of spring, decked in hues more gay, and exhaling a richer perfume, to gladden us with their presence; and, therefore, do we welcome its appearance, as, after a long and gloomy night, we do that of the little star which twinkles faintly in the east, soon to be lost again in the rosy blush of dawn, and all the golden splendour of the day:
When birds of song,
That all night long,
Shall wake, and strain
Their throats again,
"Till every hill and valley rings. The Greek name for this flower is, galanthus, which signifies milk-flower, so called from its whiteness ; in France, it is termed pierce-neige, or, as we would say, snow-piercer; because it very commonly has to make its way through the snowy covering of the earth, before it can peep out, and say, or seem to say,—for flowers never talk, you know, although the poets sometimes feign that they do,—“Take courage, I am here to cheer you with the hope of warmer weather.” You, my young friends, doubtless know what hope is : when you are looking forward to your Christmas holidays, to happy meetings with old friends and play-fellows, to days of harmless frolic, and to nights of pleasant dreams, or to any other enjoyment which you greatly desire, you hope for its speedy arrival, you hope that nothing will occur to damp, or to defer the expected pleasure; and, as you grow up, all through life you will go hoping, and looking forward to the attainment of something which is, or appears to be, of greater value than that which is now in possession. Of all creatures he is the most miserable who has nothing to hope for,-he the most happy who fixes his hopes upon worthy objects. Well, the Snowdrop has been compared to Hope, and a very apt comparison it is, for it awakens cheerful thoughts in those who look upon it, and gives promise of pleasures to come. It has been described as
the frail Snowdrop,
It has also been likened to humility, on account of its being such a small modest-looking, although beautiful flower, and putting forth its silver blossoms no near to the ground. One lady writer has likened these blossoms to
“ Pendant flakes of vegetating snow;"
and another expresses a somewhat similar idea in these lines :
“ Already now the Snowdrop dares appear,
Flora is the name given to an imaginary being, called the Goddess of Flowers, whom the ancient Greeks and Romans used to worship. Christians, better instructed, pay homage