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friend. Not that he must always, in the solitudes that await him, be in a meditative mood, for ideas and emotions will of themselves arise, and he will only have to enjoy the pleasures which his own being spontaneously affords. It would indeed be a hopeless thing, if we were always to be on the search for happiness. Intellect, imagination, and feeling, all work of their own free will and not at the order of any taskmaster. A rill soon becomes a stream-a stream a river-a river a loch-and a loch a sea. So is it with the current within the spirit. It carries us along, without either oar or sail, increasing in depth, breadth, and swiftness, yet all the while the wonderful work of our own immortal minds. While we only seem to see or hear, we are thinking and feeling far beyond the mere notices given by the senses ; and years afterwards we find that we have been laying up treasures, in our most heedless moments, of imagery, and connecting together trains of thought that arise in startling beauty, almost without cause or any traceable origin.
Awake but one-and lo! what myriads rise ! The pedestrian, too, must not only love his own society, but the society of any other human beings, if blameless and not impure, among whom his lot may for a short season be cast. He must rejoice in all the forms and shows of life, however simple they may be, however humble, however low; and be able to find food for his thoughts beside the ingle of the loneliest hut, where the inmates sit with few words, and will rather be spoken to than speak to the stranger. In such places he will be delighted-perhaps surprised-to find in uncorrupted strengih, all the primary elements of human character. He will find that his knowledge may be wider than theirs, and better ordered, but that it rests on the same foundation, and comprehends the same matter. There will be no want of sympathies between him and them; and what he knows best, and loves most, will seldom fail to be that also which they listen to with greatest interest, and respecting which there is the closest communion between the minds of stranger and host. He may know
the courses of the stars according to the revelation of science—they may have studied them only as simple shepherds, “whose hearts were gladdened" walking on the mountain-top. But they know-as he does—who sowed the stars in heaven, and that their silent courses are all adjusted by the hand of the Most High.
Oh! blessed, thrice blessed years of youth! would we choose to live over again all your sorgotten and unforgotten nights and days! Blessed, thrice blessed we call you, although, as we then felt, often darkened almost into insanity by self-sown sorrows springing out of our very soul. No, we would not again face such trouble, not even for the glorious apparitions that familiarly baunted us in glens, and forests, on mountains, and on the great sea. But all, or nearly all, that did once so grievously disturb, we can lay in the depths of the past, so that scarcely a ghastly voice is heard, scarcely a ghastly face beheld; while all that so charmed of yore, or nearly all, although no longer the daily companions of our life, still survive to be recalled at solemn hours, and with a “beauty still more beauteous," to reinvest the earth which neither sin nor sorrow can rob of its enchantments. We can still travel with the solitary mountainstream, from its source to the sea, and see new visions at every vista of its winding way. The waterfall flows not with its own monotonous voice of a day or an hour, but like a choral anthem pealing with the hymns of many years! In the heart of the blind mist on the mountainranges we can now sit alone, surrounded by a world of images, over which time holds no power, but to consecrate or solemnize. Solitude we can deepen by a single volition, and by a single volition let in upon it the stir and noise of the world and life. Why, therefore, should we complain, or why lament the inevitable loss or change that time brings with it to all that breathe ? Beneath the shadow of the tree we can yet repose, and tranquillize our spirit by its rustle, or by the “green light,” unchequered by one stirring leaf. From sunrise to sunset, we can lie below the old mossy tower, till the darkness that shuts out the day, hides the visions that glided round the ruined battlements. Cheerful as in a city can we traverse the houseless moor, and although not a ship be on the sea, we can set sail on the wings of imagination, and when wearied, sink down on savage or serene isle, and let drop our anchor below the moon and stars.
But we must pitch our key a little lower, that we may not be suspected of dealing in poetics; and, since we are pedestrians, walk along the level of common life. What pleasure, then, on this earth, transcends a breakfast after a twelve-mile walk? Or is there in this sublunary scene a delight superior to the gradual, dying-away, dreamy drowsiness, that, at the close of a long summerday's journey up hill and down dale, seals up the glimmering eyes with honey-dew, and stretches out, under the loving hands of nourrice Nature, soft as snow, and warm as sunbeams, the whole elongated animated economy, steeped in rest divine, from the organ of veneration to the point of the great toe, be it on a bed of down, chaff, straw, or heather, in palace, hall, hotel, or hut? Nobody interferes with you in meddling officiousness; neither landlord, bagman, waiter, chamber-maid, boots; -you are left to yourself without being neglected. Your bell may not be emulously answered by all the menials on the establishment, but a smug or shock-headed drawer appears in good time; and if mine host may not always dignify your dinner by the deposition of the first dish, yet, influenced by the rumour that soon spreads through the premises, he bows farewell at your departure, with a shrewd suspicion that you are a nobleman in disguise ; and such, for any thing we know to the contrary, you may be, and next to the Earl of Liverpool, the Bishop of Chester, the Marquis of Lansdown, and my Lord Lauderdale, the most conspicuous ornament of the Upper House. A GLANCE OVER SELBY'S ORNITHOLOGY.
(Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, 1826.)
What a splendid work! This is the kind of ornamental furniture, in which we, were we men of fortune, would delight. The tables in our passages, galleries, parlours, boudoirs, and drawing-rooms should groanno, not groan-but smile, with suitably-bound volumes of Natural History, on the opening of any one of which, would suddenly gleam before us some rich and rare, some bright and beauteous, some wonderful and wild, some strange and fantastic, some fierce and terrible, some minute or mighty production of the great motherNature.
But we are not men of fortune; and a magnificent folio like this would seem altogether out of its place among the permanent furniture of our sober-suited cell. Hither, not withstanding, do such magnificent folios ever and anon find out their way, carried tenderly under the arm, or borne triumphantly on the shoulder, of some rich friend's confidential servant, wondering, as he ascends the spiral staircase, how many flats really go to the composition of such a house. Then the college library is at our service-for every year do we, like Dr. Nimmo, matriculate ;— the stores of the Wernerian Society are open to us as a member of that flourishing institution; and not a bookseller in the city is reluctant to indulge us with a week's possession of the most costly and dazzling volumes, often for our own sakes, but oftener for the sake of 'THE MAN—whose friendship has been the chief blessing of our lise-CHRISTOPHER North.
What a treasure, for instance, during a rainy forenoon in the country, is such a gloriously illuminated work as this of Mr. Selby, to a small party uncertain in what spirit they shall woo the hours ! Let them assemble
round a circular table, boy and virgin alternately taking seat, and let the most scientific undertake to illustrate the plates in a desultory lecture. As the professor proceeds, his audience will be inspired to speak by the delight of surprise and wonder--their own memories will supply them with many interesting anecdotes of the “gay creatures of the element,” and they will be pleased to discover how much of natural history is known to every intelligent and observant mind that has had any opportunities of living much among the woods and fields. Each indivi. dual in the circle-however limited the range of his experience, will have his own small-not insignificant-story to tell; a hint from one leads to a disquisition from another; the conversation becomes more erudite with the comparative biography of animals; and perhaps some female Bewick or Bingley may be there, who, with all the modesty of genius, in a voice soft as the light of her humble eyes, throws in a few discriminative touches of character, that bring out at once the nature of the creature contemplated, be it locust or leviathan, lamb or lion, eagle or dove.
Now and then it is our happy lot to take part in such conversaziones, with on each side a sweet docile maiden, commending our commentaries by a whisper or a smile ; but at present we are all alone in our pensive citadel-not a mouse stirring, although it is midnight-the fire, when about to glimmer its last, restored to life by another mouthful of fuel-and our lamp, trimmed anew into a sort of spiritual lustre, seeming to enjoy the silence it illumines. That pure and steady light, which can be made to let fall its shadows as we will, is streaming on the plumage of phantom-birds, bright as the realities in the woods and on the mountains, and we shall beguile ourselves away into the solitary forest haunts, well pleased to be recalled by the rustle of the turning page, from our imaginary travels back again to the steadfastness of our beloved hearth," a dream within a dream !"
The Golden Eagle leads the van of our birds of prey and there she sits in her usual carriage when in a state of rest. Her hunger and her thirst have been appeased -her wings are folded up in a dignified tranquillity-her