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For the following places, subtract, viz.
Gravesend, Rochester, and Rammekins ...............
· Though none of the tides this year will be so higb: as on some former occasions, those on the 17th of February and the 25th of September may be pro: ductive of damage on the coast, if assisted by favourable winds.
PHENOMENA PLANETARUM. The beautiful planet VENUS will be an evening star till the 27th of July, and then a morning star to the end of the year. Jupiter will be a morning star till the 29th of August, an evening star from that time till the 16th of November, and then a morning star again to the end of the year,.
Phases of Venus. · Our young readers will bear in mind, that the phases of this beautiful planet, like those of the Moon, are subject to change. This arises from her various positions and distances with respect to the Earth and the Sun. Like other astronomical phenomena, however, they are subject to accurate computations, which having already been explained (see T. T. for 1819, p. 17), we shall merely insert the results for each month; while such of our readers as choose may not only verify these, but fipd them for any other times they please.
pses win repeat' ; we shall
Eclipses of Jupiter's Satellites. Having already inserted the most useful informa. tion on this subject, we shall refer to T. T. for 1818, rather than repeat it in this place. The following eclipses will be visible this month at the Royal Observatory, and are recorded in mean time answering to that place, and which, of course, will require a slight correction to adapt it to any other meridian. '
Immersions. First Satellite, 11th day, at 3 m, 32 s. after 5 in the morning
18th ......56 .. 58 ...... 6 ..............
27th ...... 18 .. 48 ...... 3.............. Second Satellite 10th ...... 48 .. 49 ...... 4 ..............
Form of Saturn's Ring. The apparent shape of this ring is subject to a slow variation. This induces us to insert the comparative magnitude of the two axes for every third month. The method by which this is ascertained has been given at p. 52 of T. T. for 1819, to which our readers are referred.
S Transverse axis = 1.000
January 1st Conjugate axis
Conjunction of the Moon with the Planets and Stars'.
15th i. Jupiter ...... Il at night
Other Phenomena. Mars and Jupiter will be in conjunction at 4 in the afternoon of the 4th of this month, at which time the former planet will be 3 south of the latter. Saturn will be in opposition at half past ) in the morning of the 8th; and Georgium Sidus will be in conjunction at 7 in the morning of the 19th.
* We restrict these conjunctions to stars of the first four magnitudes.
The Naturalist's Diary
• For JANUARY 1828.
Though I have marked her when none other hath,
. . Childe Harold. The solar year commences in the very depth of winter, and we open our record of its various aspects under that of its unmitigated severity. We speak now, as we intend to speak, generally. We describe the season, not as it may be in this or another year, but as it is in the average. December may be, we think, very justly styled the gloomiest, January the severest, and February the most cheerless month in the year. In December, the days become shorter and shorter: a dense mass of vapour floats above us, wrapping the world in a constant and depressing gloom, and
Murky night soon follows bazy noon. In January, this mantle of brumal sadness somewhat dissipates, as if a new year had infused new hope and vigour into the earth; light is not only more plentifully diffused, but we soon perceive its longer daily abode with us. In the words of the common adage, however,
As the day lengthens,
The cold strengthens. This is the month of abundant snows, and all the intensity of frost. Yet winter, even in its severest forms, brings so many scenes and circumstances with it to interest the heart of the lover of nature and of his fellow-creatures, that it never ceases to be a suba
ject of delightful observation; and, monotonous as it is frequently called, the very variety of the weather itself presents an almost endless source of novelty and beauty. There is, first, what is called
A GREAT STORM.-Frost, keen, biting frost is in the ground; and in the air a bitter, scythe-edged, perforating wind from the north, or, what is worse, from the north-east, sweeps the descending snow along, whirling it from the open fields, and driving it against whatever opposes its course. People who are obliged to be passing to and fro muffle up their faces, and bow their heads to the blast. There is no loitering, no street-gossipping, no stopping to make recognition of each other; they shuffle along, the most winterly objects of the scene, bearing on their fronts the tokens of the storm. Against every house, rock, or bank, the snow-drift accumulates. 'It curls over the tops of walls and hedges in fantastic wildness, forming often the most perfect curves, resembling the scrolls of Ionic capitals, and showing beneath them romantic caves and canopies. Hollow lanes, pits, and bogs, now become traps for the unwary traveller, the snow filling them up, and the wind levelling all to one deceitful plain. It is a dismal time for the traversers of wide and open heaths, and one of toil and danger to the shepherd in mountainous tracts. There the snows fall in amazing quantities in the course of a few hours; and, driven by the powerful winds of those lofty regions, soon fill up the dells and glens to a vast depth, burying the flocks and houses too, in brief space, beyond all hope of recovery. In some winters, the sheep of extensive ranges of country, much cattle, and many of the inhabitants, have perished beneath the snow-drifts. Hogg, the Ettrick Shepherd, one of the most splendid specimens of the peasant-poet, has given, in his “ Shepherd's Calendar,' some exceedingly interesting details of such events, in which he was personally concerned.
op, the Ettrici perished benes and man
The delights of the social hearth on such evenings as these, when the wild winds are howling around our dwellings, dashing the snow, or hail, or splashing rain against our windows, are a favourite theme with poets, essayists, and writers on the seasons. And, truly, it is an inspiring topic. All our ideas of comfort, of domestic affection, of social and literary en. joyment, are combined in the picture which they draw of the winter's fire-side. When Cowper exclaims, in the well-known passage commencing
Now stir the fire, and close the shutters fast, who does not feel his heart expand at the thoughts of his own beloved fire-side circle, and follow the poet with kindling sympathy through his ensuing apostrophe to winter, and his picture of evening enjoyment ? Such is the
BRITISH FIRE-SIDR! and we love to hear our writers speaking of its pleasures in strains of enthusiasm. But we may expand the picture. We may add to the zest of its personal, and almost too selfish enjoyments, touches of generous and philanthropic sentiment, which will signally heighten its pleasures and enlarge its power of improving the heart. How delightful, whilst sitting in the midst of our family or friendly group, in the actual possession of all these pleasures, not only to contemplate our own happiness, but to send our thoughts abroad over the whole land! To think what thousands of families in this noble country are, at the same moment, thus blessedly collected round the social flame. What hearths are lit up with all the charms of kindred affection, of mature wisdom, and parental pride; of youthful gladness, gaiety, and beauty. Here rural halls and city-homes, like stars, are shining in their own spheres, in unabated warmth and splendour, though hid beneath the broad veil of wintry darkness;—the lover's evening visit,-song, wine, the wild talc told to the listening circle,--or the unfolded stores of polite