ページの画像
PDF
ePub

son;

HISTORICAL SKETCHES.

choly that now oppressed him, and it proved his ruin,

for the occasion of his losing all he had at play was CASE OF THE CALAS FAMILY.

that of his resolving to commit self-murder. LavaFew things are more remarkable in the pages of isse, a youth of nineteen, son of a celebrated counmodern bistory than the contempt which Divine Pro- sellor at Toulouse, and remarkable for the gentleness vidence poured, in the course of the last century, on of his manners, had arrived that evening from Bortwo, humanly speaking, magnificent projects for the deaux, and being on friendly terms with Mark Anregeneration of the world. These projects differed in thony and the rest of the family, was to sup at their all points but this one, that both rejected Christi- house. The party he met consisted of the father and anity as it came from God—the one corrupting it, mother, M. Anthony the eldest, and Peter the second the other denying it altogether. We allude to the Pa and after supper the rest withdrew into a parpacy, as exhibited in France, and to modern infidelity, lour, but M. Anthony disappeared. At length Lavawhen adopted as a practical system in the same isse rose to go away, and Peter Calas and he went country. Both defeated their own purposes, and down stairs when, to their horror, they found M. were convicted of folly by their results; yet their Anthony suspended from a beam at the entrance from living adherents refuse to acknowledge any such the wareroom. He had taken off his coat which lay failure, and accordingly would still usurp all power folded on the counter. His shirt was as usual, his in that miserably deceived country, if they could. hair neatly combed, and his person bore no marks of

It is well known that the Papal church in France violence. pursued a course of relentless cruelty towards the The cries of the parents on this dreadful discovery Protestants of that country during the last twenty alarmed the neighbourhood. Lavaisse and Peter years of the seventeenth century; but it is less known Calas, like persons beside themselves, ran for surgeons that these cruelties were continued down to a com and the police. Meanwhile the people of Toulouse paratively recent period of the last century, and that met around the house. They were then a superstinothing tended to enlist the sympathies of the hu- tious and irascible populace, descended from the mane though ignorant French, on the side of such fanatics who figure in history as the exterminators of deceivers as Voltaire, so much as the adroit manner the Albigenses, and seeming as if they inherited all in which these pretended philosophers brought for their ferocity. Solemn thanksgivings were offered up ward the individual instances of fanaticism of which at Toulouse for the death of Henry the Third of Protestants were the victims, as proofs of the need France, because suspected of not being sufficiently there was of a new system of things altogether, which zealous in crushing the Reformation; and there, too, would exclude all such horrors, and introduce what an oath was taken that the first who acknowledged Papal Christianity had obviously failed to do, the uni- his legitimate successor, Henry the Fourth, should versal reign of moderation, peace, and charity. Re- have his throat cut. Even down to 1762 these ferojecting the Gospel of our salvation altogether, partly cious sentiments were cherished by the Papal clergy, because of the association established in their minds in a solemn yearly procession, accompanied with public between it and the fiercest fanaticism, partly because rejoicings, held in commemoration of the massacre of the purity and humility which they no less asso of 4000 Protestant citizens, two hundred years before. ciated with the Protestant view of it, they introduced Public authority had attempted in vain to suppress a scheme of their own devising, which, in its results, this disgusting commemoration, but as the inbabitwas more bloody and fanatical than what they sought ants had never been really Christianised, it was further to supersede, and of whose horrors the world perhaps endeared to them as a continuation of the Floral games has not yet had all the experience it may endure. of their pagan ancestors, while subject to the Ro

Among such instances of fanaticism that of the mans, dashed with that tinge of blood, a taste for Calas family holds a conspicuous rank. It is a very which may have descended from the times of the horrible one, and yet it is right that it should be re Druids. called, from time to time, as a warning, alike to the What might not in such circumstances have been learned and the unlearned, rich and poor, priest and anticipated from such a crowd ? A cry was heard people, how fearfully we are all subject to have our was repeated—and soon became general, that John reason disturbed and our humanity extinguished by Calas had hanged his own son! To this it was added, religious feelings, unenlightened and purified by next day, that Anthony, having resolved to abjure sound religious views.

Protestantism, had been strangled by his own family John Calas, aged sixty-eight, in 1762 had been and his friend Lavaisse, acting under the influence of known as a merchant at Toulouse for forty years, and religious malice, Men's minds, once in motion, do was thought a good father by all who knew him. not easily stop. It was imagined that there had been His wife was an English woman. Both were Pro a meeting of the Languedoc Protestants on the pretestants, as were all their children, excepting one who ceding night; that young Lavaisse had been voted had abjured, and to whom his father gave a small executioner for the whole body—had received notice pension. This proved his moderation, which was of this appointment within twenty-four hours, and further shown by his having had a Popish servant in had posted from Bordeaux, in order to assist old his family for thirty years, to whose care he had Calas and his wife in strangling their son and his own committed all his children.

friend, One of his sons, called Mark Anthony, had devoted So much excited was the chief magistrate of Touhimself to literature. He had a naturally restless, louse by these insane rumours, that he put the whole gloomy, and violent temper, which had been exasperated of the surviving Calases, their Roman Catholic serby ill success as a merchant, and by his rejection vant, and Lavaisse, in irons. The clergy published from the bar, where he could not be admitted with what is called a Monitoire, equally outraging all law out religious certificates which he could not obtain. and justice; and, more monstrous still, though the Disappointments seem to have impaired his reason, for deceased had died out of the pale of the Church, and he now thought of making away with himself, and by his own hands, his body was buried with the with that view began to read books on suicide. utmost pomp in St. Stephen's church, in spite of the

Gambling seems to have been one of those perilous protestations of the parish priest. occupations by which he sought to divert the melan The corruption of the best things, saith an old pro

[ocr errors]

none.

[ocr errors]

verb, makes them the worst; and this sad story proves | together with one of the six who were disposed to acquit what a dreadful thing even religion is when men having gone over to the side of severity, led at length fashion it according to their own devices, instead of to John Calas being condemned to be broken on the submitting to it as it is revealed in Holy Scripture. wheel. There were at that time in Languedoc four fraternities Never was there a more iniquitous sentence. John of what were called Penitents—the white, the blue, Calas was an old man of seventy-eight, who had long the grey, and the black. Our Lord's command is, been afflicted with weak and swollen legs. Had he that when we fast for our sins, we should not appear strangled his son, he must therefore have been helped to men to do so. These Penitents, however, seemed | b7 his wife, his son Peter, Lavaisse, and the servantto think they could not make their devotion too public, | raid. But as the deceased was a man of eight-andor omit so fair an opportunity of attracting notice. twenty, and above the common strength, all of them That they were abundantly ambitious appears from together could not have murdered him without such their wanting the commandant of Languedoc, the a struggle as must have alarmed the neighbours, and Duke of Fitzjames, to join their fraternity, an honour left proofs of it in bodily wounds and torn clothes. which his grace declined. The white penitents had a Altogether the crime was such as hardly to be believed religious service performed in honour of M. Anthony on any evidence, but of evidence there was absolutely Calas, which might have served for a martyr. Above a magnificent catafalque they suspended a skeleton, The judges, we are told, voted for John Calas's conrepresenting the deceased, and made to move, while dempation, under the persuasion that the weak old holding a palm-branch in one hand, and a pen in the man, while writhing under the blows of the execaother; the pen with which, as was pretended, he was tioner, would confess his crime; but they were conto have signed his abjuration, but which did actually founded when they heard their victim with his dying sign his father's sentence of death.

breath, on the wheel, calling upon God to witness his The people now universally considered him a saint. innocence and to pardon his judges. Conscience comSome prayed to him; others prayed on his tomb; pelled them by their second sentence to contradict others besought him to work miracles for them; their first, by proposing to set the four surviving perothers spoke of miracles he had already wrought. A sons at liberty. But it being remarked that by this monk took several teeth from his body that he might course the court must condemn itself, inasmuch as have relics that would last. A superstitious woman, the accused must have been all equally innocent or who was somewhat deaf, asserted that she had heard guilty, they resolved to banish Peter, the son;--a senthe church bells. An apoplectic priest was cured on tence too mild if he were guilty, and undeserved if he merely taking an emetic. Minutes of these prodigies were innocent. But the fact is, that the judges, conwere drawn up. A youth at Toulouse became an science-smitten at the father's execution, and at the idiot in consequence of having prayed for several touching piety of his dying sentiments, thought to nights on the tomb of the new saint without obtaining save their honour by letting it be supposed that they the miracles he had prayed for.

forgave his son; and considering the banishment of All these circumstances forebodedi ill to the poor a poor helpless young man, as a matter of no conseprisoners. Some of the magistrates belonged to the quence, they no doubt thought it best to put him out fraternity of white penitents; but what was of worse omen still, the year 1762 happened to be the centenary Peter was threatened wbile in prison with being commemoration of the slaughter of the 4000 Protest- broken like his father on the wheel, unless he changed ants to which we have alluded. The preparations for his religion, and while leaving Toulouse was brought it were then going on, and greatly added of course to back by one of the converting abbés, as they were the popular excitement. It was already said that the called. He was then shut up in a Dominican monasscaffold, on which the Calases were to be broken on tery, and compelled to practise all the outward obserthe wheel, was to form the grandest ornament of the vances of popery. His sisters were taken from their festival, and that Providence itself bad provided these mother and shut up in a convent. Their mother, who as victims to be sacrificed to our holy religion! So had passed through such a rapid succession of calami. utterly remote from the religion of the blessed Jesus ties, -her eldest born dead by his own hands, her aged was that which usurped his name in Toulouse: so husband broken on the wheel, her surviving son and thoroughly pagan, in the very worst attributes of daughters, who might have comforted her, torn from paganism, were the unfortunate dupes of the papal her, -was left to starve and die of a broken heart. Bæt apostacy in that city!

some persons sought her out in the retreat to which Thirteen judges met daily to try the accused. she had gone, and urged her to demand justice from Proof there was none, but religious delusion supplied the king in person. Being an English woman by its place. Six of the judges long persisted in voting birth she recoiled from this, deeming, not unnaturally, that John Calas, together with his son Peter, and that, bad as the provinces of France were, the metroLavaisse, should be broken on the wheel, and that his polis might be worse.

This reluctance, however, was wife should be burnt at the stake. The other seven overcome. She arrived in Paris in a dying state. were more moderate, and desired at least that there The state of society there was such as to secure for should be a thorough investigation. The discussions her much unexpected sympathy. The mild maxims were long and reiterated. One of the judges was and practices of England, and other Protestant states, convinced of the innocence of the accused, and that had combined with several other causes to make the the crime, indeed, was impossible. The zeal of his higher circles there, including the Court itself, tolerant humanity, no less fervent than that of the fanaticism and liberal; and already that fatal school of infidelity, of his opponents, made him the public advocate of which so grievously misled the French at a later period, the Calases among the families in Toulouse. But was rising into influence, and sought as we have reanother judge spoke with equal keenness against marked to establish that influence by inveighing them, and the two made so much noise at last that against the cruel policy of the papacy, and the fanatiboth resigned their places, and withdrew to the coun cism of its followers. The case attracted immense try. Unhappily, however, the judge who favoured notice and sympathy. Fifteen counsellors at the the accused persisted in his resignation from motives Paris bar, subscribed a judicial statemeut of it, and it of false delicacy, while the other returned; and this, was brought in due form before the king in council,

of the way.

SOUTH AFRICAN ANTELOPES. II

The pleadings were printed, and the profits were to be given to the unfortunate widow, but so many editions were pirated that no benefit accrued to her from that source. The injustice with which the family had been treated excited the sympathy even of foreign countries, and public opinion in Paris was as much in their favour as it had been against them at Toulouse. The privy council decided that the widow should have her daughters restored to her, and all three appeared in crape, and dissolved in tears before their judges. To a people so fond of sentimental scenes as the French, this result must have been extremely interesting, and we doubt not that something more substantial was done in the way of repairing the wrong that had been committed.

So much for the famous case of John Calas. It is very affecting in itself, but its chief historic importance arises from the place it holds in a series of events, which led for a time to the utter suppression of the Papal Church in France, and inflicted a blow on that body, which it does not seem ever likely to recover.

[graphic]

In general, men have less sympathy for the suffering, than their condition ought to inspire. We meet them with a sad face, and are more earnest to show them that we are afflicted ourselves, than to seek to cheer their dejection. We multiply so many questions touching their health, that it would seem as if we feared to allow them to forget that they were sick.-D.

His plan is wise who examines, with a judgment free from

THE PALLAH, (Antilope melampus.) ambition, the amount of fortune necessary to competence in his case, viewed in all its bearings; and commences the No country perhaps is more richly stocked with steady pursuit of it. Having reached that measure, if his animals belonging to one particular tribe than Southern desires impel him beyond the limit, which, in a more reason

Africa is with those of the Antelope kind. Wher. able hour he prescribed for himself, he henceforward strives to be happy by sacrificing enjoyment. He barters it for a

ever the traveller passes, or, near the rugged mounvery uncertain means of purchasing even pleasures. In tains of that region, he is almost sure to meet with this way competency becomes useless to the greater part of some species or other of antelope. We have recently those who obtain it.' Victims of the common folly, and still given a description of one of these species, viz, the Wishing a little more, they lose, in the effort to get rich, the Spring-bok, and shall now notice a few others, such as time which they might have spent in usefulness to others, the Pallah, the Steen-bok, the Grys-bok, the Bless-bok, and in healthy enjoyment to themselves. We see grasping and the Rhee-bok. and adroit speculators on every side; and but rarely men

As our space is limited, and as who know how to employ the resources of a moderate for there are many points of resemblance between these tune. It is not the art of acquiring beyond competence, species, we shall in the present paper notice the five hut of wisely spending, that we need

to learn.-D. which we have here named.

The Pallah is, when full grown, rather more than THE SPANISH SHEPHERD

four feet and a half in length from the nose to the Is a being of a hardy and abstemious race. He is usually origin of the tail; three feet high at the shoulder, and placed as an attendant on the mayoral, or head shepherd, a little greater at the croup. The horns have a sort at an early age, and rises according to merit. He goes forth of irregular lyre-form, bending first forwards and dressed in a jacket of black sheep-skin, breeches made of outwards, then with a large circular sweep inwards, the same material, a red silken sash tied round his waist,

long leather gaiters, a slouched hat, a staff with an iron and finally pointing forward again : their entire point in his hand, and a manta, or brown blanket, slung length is about twenty inches; and, although over his left shoulder. If his fowling-piece, or his dog, only three inches apart at their points, are nearly one does not supply him with a meal, his fare is of the scantiest foot asunder in the middle : each horn is surrounded kind, while water is almost his only beverage. A few heads for two thirds of its length with irregular rings, often of garlic, a little tobacco, an extra shirt, and a supply of splitting into two halves: they are strong, black, ammunition are the only contents of his wallet.

striated, and irregularly annulated, except near the Debarred from all the conveniences of life, and during eight months in the year exposed to the rigours of heat and points, which are smooth. The head, back, flanks, and cold-ill fed, and often worse clad, the desert usually serves outer surface of the legs and tail are of a yellowish him as a lodging-place, the rock as his pillow, and his dog as red colour; whereas the lips, eyebrows, interior of a companion. The extent of territory which he traverses the ears, breast, belly, and inside of the legs, are

in the course of a season it would be difficult to calculate. white. Along the middle of the back extends a deep 3.Chance commonly guides his steps, although his track lies

across the most secluded, and often the most rugged, parts of shining black band or stripe, which divides on the the country. Want alone drives him to the busy habitations croup, and passes down along each hip in the form of man, and yet the earnings of the head shepherd, or of a crescent, separating the rufous colour of the mayoral, do not amount to 201. per annum, and those of his back from the white of the other parts. The outside underlings to no more than a fourth of that sum. This of the knee and heel are covered with brilliant black

race of men, and smugglers, formed the best guerilla spots, which are in strong contrast with the general a soldiers, during the French invasion. Often they traversed rust colour of the extremities, and from which the s. the enemy's camp, undiscovered, as spies.

animal obtains its specific name of melampus.' The Even in our periods of happiness, if we pause for the re- tail, which is about eight inches long, is white, and flection of a moment, we find the need of immortality. without any terminal tuft. The ears are very long,

frequently as much as seven inches, and are covered caught by the dogs so nearly resembled those of a on the outside with short red hair, bordered and child, and the animal seemed so keenly alive to its tipped with black.

hapless situation, that this circumstance diminished The Pallah is found in Caffraria and the country of the pleasure of the chase. The eyes of the gazelle or the Bushuanas. They reside on the open plains in antelope are often spoken of in oriental poetry, for families of six or eight individuals, and are extremely their great beauty; but to none of the various species numerous on the elevated plains in the neighbourhood does the remark seem to apply better than to the of Latakoo, and constitute a favourite object of the Grys-bok, whose eyes are said to have an almost chase with the natives, as the flesh, though deficient indescribable expression of infantine simplicity, inno, in fat, is well tasted and wholesome. It is called cence, and helplessness. Pallah, or, Paala by the Bushuanas, and Roode-bok The BLESS-Bok is one of the largest animals of the (Red buck) by the mixed Hottentots who have Antelope tribe inhabiting South Africa, being five travelled into the district which it inhabits. It is feet and a half in length, and about three feet and a described by Mr. Burchell as being somewhat similar half in height, dimensions exceeding those of the to the Spring-bok in form and colour, but considerably European stag. The colours of the head and body are larger in size ; it is also without that peculiar dupli so singularly disposed, as to appear as if the fur had cation of the skin of the back, which we described in been artificially painted with different shades, laid on our recent article on the Spring-bok. The Pallah | in separate masses.

The head and neck are of a differs from the Spring-bok in the horns more perhaps brilliant brown, excepting a narrow stripe of pure than in in any other respect, they being of different white which descends from the central point between form, and spreading farther apart, of more than twice the roots of the horns to the orbits, and, expanding, the length, and being wholly wanting in the females. covers the whole face and nose down to the muzzle.

The STEEN-BOK is an exceedingly graceful and The back is of a brownish-bay colour, thickly overelegant species of this tribe, but rather smaller in size laid with dull purplish white; a band of a purplish than most other species. The body is compact and brown tint passes down the flanks. The breast, well made, and the head small and pointed. The belly, and in general those parts of the body which colour is reddish fawn on the upper parts of the are least seen are, in this as well as in most other body; but a peculiar effect is produced by the tips species of the African Antelope, of the purest white, of the hairs being tinged with a light dun or silvery and a small crescent of this colour passes over the. brown hue: the nose and legs are dark brown, while back of the croup. The horns are sixteen inches the breast and the belly are white. The females have long, rather thick, elegantly formed, the same in both no horns, but the horns of the males are small and sexes, those of the males being rather larger and round, furnished at the roots with a few faint wrin. heavier than those of the females: they are annulated kles, but smooth and polished throughout the greater with about a dozen prominent rings, which reach part of their length. The Steen-boks reside in pairs nearly to the points; and the summits of the two on the plains and mountain valleys, but seldom horns are about six inches asunder. The ears are mount to the elevated rocky districts : this preference about seven inches long, erect, pointed, and cylinseems to arise in some degree from their desire of drical; they are of a reddish fawn colour without and obtaining cover under the clumps of stunted bushes white within. The tail is long and switched, alınost and underwood with which the dry open plains are free from hair near the root, but having a terminal often covered. The Steen-bok is very shy and timid, tuft of very long black hair: the trunk of the tail and runs and leaps with extraordinary agility: when is about seven inches in length, and the hairs forming it has power to escape from its pursuers, it will often, the tuft about four inches. When the Europeans although not much more than three feet long, leap first settled in South Africa, Bless-boks were seen from twelve to fifteen feet at one bound; but when in enormous troops, almost equalling in extent those closely pressed, and without any means of escape, it of the Spring-boks; but they have long since ceased will hide its head in any convenient hole or recess, to be met with in such large numbers. and there patiently await its fate.

There are at least a dozen species of Antelope inThe GRYS-BOK is another species, closely allied habiting South Africa; but we can only notice one to the Steen-bok, about three feet and a half long, more in the present paper. The RHEE-BOK is about and about a foot and a half high. The hair of the five feet in length, and two feet and a half in height. body is universally long, particularly on the hind The head is long and tapering, and about six inches quarters, but very short on the head and extremities. long from the muzzle to the root of the horns. The The upper parts of the body are of a deep crimson hair partakes of the quality of wool, and is of an ash red colour, regularly intermixed with long coarse colour on the neck, shoulders, sides, croup, &c., white hairs: this gives to the animal a hoary appear whereas the under parts are of a white or light gray ance, from whence it derived the name of Grys-bok, tint: while the animal is young, this woolly hair is (grey buck.) It lives in pairs upon the plains, never beautifully curled into distinct locks, and its colour unites into troops or flocks, and conceals itself from is much clearer than in after years. The horns are pursuers in any place which can afford shelter.

very long, strait, slender, and parallel, and by being Lieutenant Moodie, in his Wild Sports of South smooth and attenuated towards the points, serve the Africa, has given a graphic description of a hunt Hottentots and Bushmen in place of needles and after one of these beautiful but timid little animals. bodkins. As the body and legs of the Rhee-bok are It would return again and again on the same track, long and slender, its pace is very swift, running with then turn sharply round a corner of the bushes, and great velocity, keeping close to the ground, and dart aside into some' narrow foot path, where it moving with long, rapid, and uniform strides. They would stand still for a time to listen for the dogs. live in small families of five or six individuals, conWhen it found that its retreat was discovered, the sisting of an adult male and three or four females little animal would start off, and as a last resource with their young. Their usual residence is on the would sometimes make a desperate spring into the sides of moderate hills, among stunted trees and middle of a thick clump of bushes, and completely underwood, or in the rocky glens and mountainbaffle its pursuers. Lieutenant Moodie remarks that passes, so as to be near the little pools of water which the plaintive cries of the poor Grys-bok when it was remain after the periodical rains.

[ocr errors]

THE INFLUENCES OF CHRISTIANITY.

LUMINOUS INSECTS. I. The palaces and theatres erected by human knowledge have become so vast and gorgeous, that we in our days may

Tell us, O Guide! by what strange natural laws,

This winged flower throws out, night by night, perhaps have stronger temptations than our fathers to abide

Such lunar brightness? Why,--for what grave cause contentedly therein, instead of going forth to build and to

Is this earth-insect crowned with heavenly light? people the house of God. While the universe has been continually expanding before the advances of Science, The property possessed by certain animals of emitmen have been apt to fancy that it had outgrown God, because it had outgrown their conception of Him. When ting light is so curious and interesting that it has they have discovered some new province of His empire, as

attracted the attention of naturalists in all ages. It there was no place marked out for it in their previous was particularly noticed by Aristotle and Pliny; and system of things, they have thought it must belong to some the publications of the different learued societies of unknown God: whereupon some have anticipated in reck-Europe contain numerous memoirs on the subject. less indifference, others in faithless dismay, that this

, unNotwithstanding the degree of regard thus bestowed known God must dethrone the God they had hitherto worshipped. In wandering and wondering over the immen

upon the history of lum nous animals, our knowledge

We sometimes find sity of the circumference, we have often forgotten that it still remains very imperfect. must have a centre: and the Creation has still concealed the power of producing light attributed to creatures the Creator, all the more because man deemed that he saw which do not possess it, or we meet with imperfect an image of himself in it, the work of his own hands, the and inaccurate descriptions of those which enjoy it reflexion of his own mind, and did not recollect of what in an eminent degree, while the explanations which mind his was the image, did not perceive how this very have been given of the nature of animal light are spectacle, which so dazzled and delighted him, bore testimony to its being so. Yet it is most certain, that the im- contradictory and unsatisfactory, measurable superiority of modern Europe in science, as

The property of emitting light has been erroneously well as in other respects, to the rest of the world is owing reported to belong to several fishes, more especially wholly to the influence of Christianity. Indeed physical sci- the mackerel, the moonfish, the dorado, mullet, sprat, ence, as has been justly remarked, has been almost confined&c., but it does not appear that any of these, or to, Christendom. For ihis there are many reasons. Chris- of the class of fishes in general are in possession of tianity has given man an assurance of the unity and intelli

such a faculty, and the instances which have been gent purpose pervading all the operations of Nature, an assurance which accompanies him as an unseen friend and observed of the bodies of doradoes, &c., being covered guide in all his speculations. It delivers him from the bond with luminous points during thcir migrations have age of Nature, from the thraldom both of the senses and of been satisfactorily explained, on examination, as the fancy, and has thus elevated him above materialism, arising from a vast number of spherical particles or into which he would soon fall headlong, were he to lose its medusæ adhering to the bodies of these fishes. Many sustaining power. It enables him likewise to feel something fishes however when dead, and the flesh in a putreslike a fraternal sympathy and communion with Nature, a reverence for the work of the all-wise and benevolent Author cent state, emit light; but this is not a case in point, of his own being, a reverence equally removed from volup as our object is to inquire into the nature of living tuous idolatry and from superstitious fear. We know that luminous animals. all the gifts of the natural world are the gifts of God, that The extraordinary appearances produced by minute the beauty of the natural world is the visible expression of luminous animals at sea bave been already described, * His wisdom and goodness, that the laws of the natural world are His laws, and, as proceeding from Him, universal

we have now to speak of the flies, worms, &c., which

are and unchangeable, until He shall will to change them. We

likewise luminous. have a feeling too that the natural world is in some measure

The property alluded to is only met with in animals a sharer in our Fall, and that it is waiting for the time when, of the four last classes of naturalists, i. e., mollusca, along with its lord, it shall be delivered from the bondage of insects, worms, and zoophytes. The first and third corruption. To the influence, often perhaps the latent intlu- of these classes contains each but a single luminous ence, of these thoughts and feelings, do we owe that deeper and more spiritual love of Nature, which distinguishes dactylus; among worms, Nereis noctiluca. The number

species : among mollusca the species called Pholus Christian poetry and art. In science likewise it is the of insects which yield light is very considerable: truth that has made us free; and the benefits of this freedom have been extended in some measure even to such as have there are eight genera containing species of this desrejected the truth whereby it had been obtained. For, like cription. Among zoophytes we find three genera ali God's gifts, this too has not always been rightly used and containing species which afford light. duly acknowledged. Though Christian wisdom is the great Numerous theories have been started from time to parent of natural science, it by no means follows that all men of science must have been Christians. Here again remarkable property of some of the insect race.

time which profess more or less to account for this the weakness of man's Faith, his proneness to idolatry has

In shewn itself. He has evermore given up his heart and

one theory the influence of the nervous system is. soul to that to which he had devoted his mind. He obscurely hinted at as the cause; in another, the has fallen down and worshipped the laws, which he himself respiration; and in a third, the circulation is had found out. Yet, as it is through the operation of Chris supposed to influence the phenomenon. Other tianity that even they who may reject it have been enabled

naturalists speak of a substance resembling phosto attain to whatever eminence they may have reached in science; so is it the unseen, unfelt influence of Christianity,

phorus, which is secreted by peculiar organs in these that preserves them from gross materialism. Indeed mani insects, and by means of which the light is emitted. fold symptoms have shown themselves during the last hun- | Treviranus, however, who has bestowed an anatomical dred years, in the more intelligent nations of Europe, be examination on the Elater noctilucus, as also on the tokening how easily and inevitably, if we were to abandon Lampyri, assures us that there is no organ to be found our Faith in Christ, all that is good and wholesome and pre

in these insects capable of secreting the luminous cious in the present condition of society would be swallowed up in the desolating licentiousness of a pantheistic atheism.

substance, not even at the luminous points of these

animals, and that the faculty proceeds from the fatty RETREAT and competence everywhere supply a wise man a

or albuminous substance of the insects. There is degree of independence. Another kind of liberty is the probably no case in which pure albumen can become portion of but a few in our own country,—the liberty of luminous; we must therefore conclude that some disposing of our whole time at our choice. To those who other substance is incorporated with it, and that this understand not the value of time, this liberty bequeaths a substance, either alone or incorporated with albumen, heavy bondage, but to those who have learned the secret of is the cause of the light produced. Phosphorus is a happiness it is of inestimable value. Being neither the slave of business, fashion, opinion, or routine, it is in his familiar example of a light-producing body, and as it power at awaking to say, "This day is all my own."

See Saturday Magazine, Vol. XIV., p. 159, 171.

« 前へ次へ »