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raltar has been kept possession of by the British Crown. and it has been rendered so strong a fortress, that it is considered able to resist any warlike force that can be brought against it, provided the supply of food and of ammunition should not fail. The last attempt that was made to take Gibraltar was made in the year 1782. For nearly three years previously great preparations and efforts had been made to take Gibraltar. In the latter end of 1782, Gibraltar was besieged by the combined forces of France and Spain. On the land side was a besieging army of forty thousand soldiers ; and in the bay there was a mighty fleet, consisting of a vast assemblage of ships of war, battering ships, gun-boats, and other vessels. The cannonading on both sides was most awful. Red-hot shots were fired from the rock upon the shipping, and made dreadful havoc. Many of the ships took fire, and the besiegers were completely defeated. Soon after peace was concluded between England and Spain. Since then no attack has been made on this important fortress. Gibraltar is an immense rock, consisting of different
the principal of which consists of a gray dense mass, which mineralogists have called primary marble. In the rock there are many caverns; these, and other excavations made in the rocks, afford space for a large number of guns, which can be fired through apertures ; and the men are protected by the rock from the fire of besiegers.
The climate of Gibraltar during the greater part of the year is pleasant and healthy. Having the sea nearly round the island, the inhabitants feel less heat in the summer and less cold in the winter than is felt by the occupants of the adjacent countries. Heavy rains, high winds, tremendous thunder, and awful lightning, are common in December and January. The heat of the summer is moderated by the refreshing westerly breeze from the sea ; which, on account of its beneficial effects, is called “ The Doctor.” When the easterly wind prevails, persons of delicate constitutions suffer from its influence.
In Gibraltar, there exists a species of the ape tribe, which is not found in any other part of Spain, and is therefore supposed to have been brought from Barbary. Red-legged partridges are found in coveys; there are also some woodcocks, teal, and rabbits. Mosquitoes are troublesome at the latter end of the summer. The scorpion, centipede, and other venomous reptiles, exist among the rocks and ruinous buildings.
The following account was, in substance, given of the monkeys, a few years since, by a correspondent of a popular periodical
“When I was at Gibraltar, the most amusing creatures in the garrison were the wild monkeys, that ran about in great numbers. People used to wonder where they came from, as they are not found in the neighbouring mountains of Spain. The soldiers and common people believe that the celebrated Saint Michael's Cave, which has its mouth near the top of the rock, and which penetrates to a depth which has not yet been ascertained, is continued under the sea across the Straits to Mount Abyla, or Ape's Hill, as the African mountain is called, which is just opposite to Gibraltar, and abounds with monkeys of the same kind. The distance between Gibraltar and Mount Abyla is about sixteen miles.
“It is more natural to suppose that when the Moors invaded Spain, and settled in Gibraltar, some monkeys were brought over by them; or that, at a more recent period, when the Spaniards held Ceuta, in the neighbourhood of Ape's Hill, they sent some monkeys to the garrison at Gibraltar ; that some of the monkeys escaped to the cliffs and caverns of the rock, and propagated their species.
“I scarcely ever returned from my walks—which were frequent in the summer evenings— without seeing many monkeys. Sometimes on turning a corner of the rock I have come suddenly on a large party of them, seated in a circle, like neighbours, met for the pleasure of an evening gossip. The rapidity with which they would decamp was astonishing. All that I had seen of the gambols of monkeys in England, was as nothing compared with the feats of these. They would never stop or make any noise until they had reached a position where it was impossible for man to follow them; but when once in safety, they would face about, mow, and chatter, and make the strangest grimaces. If I threw stones at them, they would draw themselves into holes, or behind some projection of the rock. After the flight of the stone they would reappear, and scream and make faces.
“In the months of May and June, I used often to surprise monkey parties when they had their young ones with them. The moment they saw me, the mothers would take up their little ones on their backs, and scamper up the rocks, never stopping until far beyond sight or reach. They never fled without their young ones.
“Some of these animals are always to be seen on the front of the rock; but their favourite resorts are upon the almost perpendicular cliffs, which afford no foot-hold for human beings. When the strong easterly gales blow, great numbers of the monkeys are to be seen crossing the ridges of the rock, travelling to the western and sheltered side of the rock. When the monkeys flee to the west, Gibraltar is a sad place to abide in. Then a mist rests on the top of the rock, and it is usual to say, Old Gib has got on his night-cap. The easterly winds are very pernicious at Gibraltar.
"To botanists, Gibraltar presents an interesting field of observation. It contains many African as well as European specimens. It is said that not less than three hundred species of herbs grow on the Gibraltar rock.
Spain is a Popish country, and Protestants are not permitted to preach the Gospel there. The laws of Spain are intolerant and awfully cruel towards those who oppose the errors of the Romish church. This prevents the Protestant ministers of different communions in Gibraltar from doing much for the religious benefit of the Spaniards. We hope the time will come, when the unholy opposition of professedly Christian States to the spread of true religion will cease. Spain is awfully injured by the prevalence therein of Papistical domination.”
“MAMMA IS ASLEEP.” Many are the flowers of gorgeous beauty or winning sweetness, that bud and bloom on this our earth. Some inay be seen on the bleak mountain's brow, amid the luxuriant foliage of the tangled forest, or in the dreary solitudes of the desert. When the cold embraces of winter have given way to the revivifying breath of spring, innumerable buds and blossoms open their bosoms to the sun ; and when summer, with its bright, sunny days, has taken the place of spring, these same buds, expanded and adorned with robes painted in rainbow tints, and glittering with dewy pearls, laden the whispering zephyrs with the richest perfume.
But how many of these flowers bud and blossom, and droop and die, unknown and unseen by mortal eye ? How many, if seen, are ruthlessly trodden under foot and buried in the dust ? How many, because unpretending in their appearance, and because they raise their “wee modest heads” among 'rugged rocks, or barren wastes, are passed heedlessly by ?
And there are flowers of humanity, too, who form a counterpart to those spoken of, who bloom here and there in life's pathway, as if to adorn it for a season, and conceal the thorns and briars that are indigenous to earth's wilderness. In the highways and byways of life, such flowers may be seen unpretendingly unfolding heavenly beauties, and emitting fragrance, as unearthly in its character as it is unobtrusive in its spirit. And they are none the less valuable that they are spurned by the heel of the thoughtless; none the less interesting because unheralded to the world by the prestige of great names ; and none the less beautiful because their leaves are but seldom tinged with the rays of earth's sun.
Forgotten though they be by the votaries of earth, crushed and bruised by the giddy and the thoughtless, and drooping and dying amid the chilling neglect of a cold world, nevertheless they are flowers of God's own planting, they are refreshed and comforted by the waters that flow from living fountains, and they will bloom for ever in the Paradise of Jehovah. And there, while basking in the beams of heaven's glorious sun, and laving their immortal blossoms in the river of the water of life, they shall form undying testimonies of the power and glory of King Emmanuel.
We now drop the figurative, and address ourselves to the realities of life, while sketching an item in
“The short and simple annals of the poor." Few persons were more respected and beloved in the village of Clifton than the young widow Anderson-—"the minister's widow," as she was more usually called. And, probably, neither cottage nor palace ever sheltered a happier or lovelier family than hers, consisting of two boys of eight and twelve years, respectively, and a girl over whose head three summers had passed.
Charles, the oldest, had a disposition marked by a melancholy sweetness, that won upon all, and a nobleness of soul that distinguished him from all other boys of his age. William, the youngest, was the picture of bis mother, both in features and temper. Vivacious and imaginative, he was full of gambol and glee. Little Emma, the darling of all
, though bright and promising, was delicate, and like the last rose of summer, pointed to an early grave.
The two brothers lavished upon this little one a love that was almost unearthly. Did any kind neighbour give either of them an apple, or a sweetcake, for performing some kind action, then the thought of "little Emma” developed itself by a thrusting of the delicacy into the pocket, and, “these are for you, Emma," were the words that accompanied the treasure as it rolled into her tiny lap. Were there any berries to be seen hanging from the bushes in some fence corner, then, Emma will | be so glad to have some,” were the talismanic words that urged to a simultaneous attack on bramble-bushes, to the imminent danger of having scratched hands and torn garments. If any flowers of more than ordinary beauty were to be seen, they were sure to become lawful spoil ;