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upon the Dutch, the only Europeans who are now admitted to any commercial intercourse with this singular people. Before the establishment, however, of the jealous policy by which the Japanese are now distinguished, there appears to have generally existed an intimate communication between the two empires. The Chinese, indeed, occasionally made pretensions to supreme authority over Japan; but they seem to have been backward in enforcing them, and most of the hostilities in which the two nations were occasionally opposed to each other, were carried on in Corea, and were caused by a struggle for the sovereignty of that peninsula.

allowed to move, without a special permission and under a numerous guard. When any other vessels have arrived at Japan, the crew representing themselves to be in want of water or provisions, they have been supplied, but every sort of payment refused, in order to show more strongly the determination to suffer no trade. Other adventurers who were suspected of insidious designs, have been subjected to close and prolonged imprisonment.

At the period when the Portuguese first pushed their discoveries into this part of the East, they seem to have enjoyed unrestricted intercourse with the inhabitants, and a degree of religious toleration somewhat remarkable in a country where the authority of the sovereign is so intimately connected with the established faith. Numbers of Jesuit missionaries, with St. François Xavier at their head, made the most active and successful exertions for the conversion of the natives to Christianity; and according to the reports made to their superiors in Rome, they at one time numbered among their proselytes no less than two hundred thousand native Christians, many of them belonging to the highest ranks; but at length a civil war broke out in Japan, which ended in the extirpation of Christianity.

Few portions of the religious history of the world (says a writer in the Quarterly Review) would be more interesting than a faithful record of these events. In the annals of Christianity few examples have occurred of a triumph so rapid, followed by a destruction so complete. Whether the force of circumstances compelled the Jesuits, who were agents of that great conversion, to associate themselves with a party in the civil feuds which then distracted Japan, or whether they did so voluntarily, and in pursuance of the alleged practice of their order-of which their first apostle, Xavier, was a joint founder with Loyola-may be doubtful; certain it is that in an evil hour they took their part in the dispute, and perished. Japanese tradition attributes to them, as a cause and justification of their fall, rapacity and sensuality. This we doubt. These vices are usually the attendants of long and undisturbed possession, rather than

of the circumstances in which the missionaries of a religion struggling into life were placed. It is likely that the hostility of their Dutch rivals may have magnified individual instances of such errors, and that the zeal of triumphant persecution may have perpetuated the imputation.

It appears that the legitimate Ziogoon was supported by the Christians, to whose faith he inclined, and that the usurper, on overcoming his rival, commenced a legal persecution against the religion whose votaries were opposed to his pretensions. After this had continued for some years, a province of which the inhabitants were principally Christians, erected, in the year 1637, the standard of revolt; and the prince, finding himself unable to restore his authority, applied for and obtained the assistance of the Dutch, which decided the fate of the unfortunate insurgents. This was followed by a more sanguinary and unrelenting persecution of the Christians, and in about twenty-five years the work of destruction was complete. During this persecution, it was incumbent on all who would escape the most cruel punishment, to trample on the image of the crucified Redeemer, and on the picture of the Virgin; but it is related, to the honour of the native Christians, that they almost universally resisted the most seductive offers of reward, and endured the severest tortures, rather than abjure the faith to which they were converts.

From this period has existed that rigid system of excluding foreigners from the empire which subsists in full force at the present day. To such an extent is this carried that no foreign vessels are allowed to touch at Japan, except a limited number of Chinese traders and two Dutch merchantmen annually from Java; and these are subject to the strictest restraint, all strangers being confined to certain prescribed limits, from which no one is

The Dutch factory is limited to the number of officers considered necessary for conducting the trade, which is at present, eleven; and so strict is this limitation, that when one of the presidents of the factory was accompanied by his wife and child, he could not obtain permission for them to remain; not that there seemed to be any particular dread at the admission of a female, but from the general exclusion of every human being who was not absolutely necessary for the carrying on of the trade. As soon as a vessel arrives off Japan, a boat is sent to her by the guards, who keep constant watch on the coast. Not a word is interchanged; but written interrogatories are handed on board, which must be answered, and the paper returned to the boat. The ship must now wait for orders, and, in the interval, every book, picture, or anything connected with the Christian religion, is placed in a chest under lock and seal, to be delivered up, with all the arms and ammunition on board, until the vessel's departure, when they are returned.

If the ship appear to be one of the two Dutch merchantmen allowed to arrive annually, hostages are demanded and delivered, and a deputation proceeds on board, comprising several Japanese interpreters, well versed in the Dutch language, for the purpose of If the result prove examining the passengers and crew. satisfactory, the vessel is towed into the harbour of Na gasaki, but no one is allowed to land without undergoing a personal search, except indeed a new president, who is exempted from this annoyance on his arrival.

allowed to land in Japan, are confined, is the Bay of The place to which the few foreigners who are Nagasaki; and the residence of the Dutch is an artificial island, built for this express purpose. When the Ziogoon was asked in what form the island should be constructed, he unfolded his fan as the pattern, and such is accordingly its shape. Dezima, as the island is named, is about 600 feet in length, and 240 across, and is connected with the town of Nagasaki by a stone bridge, but the prospect from either side is cut off by a high wall. The bridge is closed and strictly guarded, so that no foreigner can pass out without permission, nor any Japanese enter, except those who have the sanction of government; and no person whatever may pass the gate without being searched.

The houses in this island of imprisonment are built by citizens of Nagasaki, and the Dutch pay an exorbitant rent, fixed by authority. All purchases and sales between foreigners and natives must be transacted through the agency of the Japanese authorities, as the former are not allowed to have any money dealings, nor even to have any money in their possession. The cargoes of the Dutch ships are delivered to the appointed officers, and the return goods purchased with the proceeds, the Dutch president being furnished with an account, which he has not the means of checking.

As the Dutch are not allowed to bring into the island any domestic servants, certain Japanese are allowed by the government to act in that capacity, each being furnished with a seal or passport, which authorizes his entrance at the lawful hours. All these servants understand Dutch; but it is stated that "all are obliged, prior to entering upon their offices, to sign, with their blood, an oath binding them to contract no friendship with any of the Dutch; to afford them no information respecting the language, laws, manners, religion, or his

tory of Japan; in short, to hold no communication with them except in their several recognised functions." In a country where espionage prevails to so great an extent, there can be no doubt that many of them are spies of the government. These servants, however, are obliged to leave the island at sunset, and this rule is not allowed to be relaxed under any emergency. No respectable female is ever permitted to visit the island, as is announced in the plainest terms by a public proclamation, placarded near the bridge-gate.

After the various extortions to which the Dutch traders are subjected, it seems extraordinary that a sufficient profit should remain to keep up an establishment subject to such regulations that no individual, however avaricious, would submit to them, unless by so doing he acquired great facilities for amassing wealth. No doubt the Japanese, who are accustomed to consider all trade as degrading, look upon the members of the Dutch factory with the most supreme contempt. In fact, we find that none is allowed to wear a sword, except the president, and even he is restricted to one.

There are only two occasions on which the residents at Dezima are allowed to pass the bounds of their prison. When any individual member of the factory is desirous of an excursion in the country, he may obtain permission from the governor, by giving twenty-four hours' notice, to ramble in the adjacent country; but he must return to Dezima by sunset. Neither must he enter any habitation, except the tea-houses, which abound in all parts of the country, unless he has a special sanction to visit any one who may have invited him. As, however, he is not permitted to move except under the escort of scores of officials, all of whom he must entertain, these excursions are too expensive to be indulged in frequently. The other occasion on which any Dutchman is allowed to leave Dezima, is on the periodical visit to the

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Ziogoon, which takes place once in four years. The president, his secretary, and physician, proceed to Yedo, the capital of the empire, with a numerous escort of Japanese. During the journey, the president is treated with much distinction, and, its constant accompaniment in Japan, a great privation of liberty. It is said, however, that these honours are not paid to him as the representative of the Dutch nation, but simply as one who is about to be glorified by admission into the august presence of the Ziogoon. The expenses of the progress are defrayed by the chief interpreter, and the amount deducted from the proceeds of the next sale on account of the factory.

Fischer gives the following account of the presentation of the Dutch president:-"The ceremony consists in making upon the appointed spot, the Japanese compliment (which resembles the Chinese kotoo), and remaining for some seconds with the head touching the mats, whilst the words Capitan Holanda are proclaimed aloud. A stillness, as of death, prevails, broken only by the buzzing sound used by the Japanese to express profound veneration. The governor of Nagasaki and the chief interpreter are the only persons who accompany the opperhoofd, or president, and they give him the signal of retreat, which, like his entrance, is performed in a very stooping attitude; so that, although the presence of numbers may be perceived, it is impossible, without violating the laws of Japanese courtesy, to look round for what should attract attention or excite curiosity."

This presentation formerly took place annually; but although its recurrence is now less frequent, the presi dent is bound every year to make the same present to the Ziogoon as if an audience was granted. The Dutch have of late petitioned to be allowed to perform the ceremony every alternate year, but this favour has been refused.

[Abridged from Manners and Customs of the Japanese.]

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A JAPANESE FUNERAL PROCESSION.

DIFFERENCE IN NATURAL TALENTS.

THE difference of natural talents in different men is, in reality, much less than we are aware of; and the very different genius which appears to distinguish men of different professions, when grown up to maturity, is not, upon many occasions, so much the cause, as the effect of division of labour. The difference between the most dissimilar characters, between a philosopher and a common street porter, for example, seems to arise not so much from nature as from habit, custom, and education. When they came into the world, and for the first six or eight years of their existence, they were, perhaps, very much alike, and neither their parents nor play-fellows could perceive any remarkable difference. About that age, or soon after, they come to be employed in very different occupations. The difference of talents comes then to be taken notice of, and widens by degrees, till at last the vanity of the philosopher is willing to acknowledge scarce any resemblance. But without the disposition to truck, barter, and exchange, every man must have procured to himself every necessary and conveniency of life which he wanted. All must have had the same duties to perform, and the same work to do; and there could have been no such difference of employment as could alone give occasion to any great difference of talents. As it is, this disposition which forms that difference of talents, so remarkable among men of different professions, so it is this same disposition which renders that difference useful. Many tribes of animals, acknowledged to be all of the same species, derive from nature a much more remarkable distinction of genius than what, antecedent to custom and education, appears to exist among men. By nature a philosopher is not in genius and disposition half so different from a street porter as a mastiff is from a greyhound, or a greyhound from a shepherd's dog. Those different tribes of animals, however, though all of the same species, are of scarce any use to each other. The strength of the mastiff is not in the least supported, either by the swiftness of the greyhound or by the sagacity of the spaniel, or by the docility of the shepherd's dog. The effects of those different geniuses and talents, for want of the power or disposition to barter or exchange, cannot be brought into a common stock, and do not in the least contribute to the better accommodation and conveniency of the species. Each animal is still obliged to support and defend itself separately and independently, and derives no sort of advantage from that variety of talents with which nature has distinguished its fellows. Among men, on the contrary, the most dissimilar geniuses are of use to one another; the different produces of their respective talents, by the general disposition to truck, barter, and exchange, being brought, as it were, into a common stock, where every man may purchase whatever part of the produce of other men's talents he has occasion for. Thus, for example, in a tribe of hunters or shepherds, a particular person makes bows and arrows with more readiness and dexterity than another. He frequently exchanges them for cattle or for venison with his companions; and he finds at last that he can get, in this manner, more cattle and venison than if he himself went to the field to catch them. From a regard to his own interest, therefore, the making of bows and arrows grows to be his chief business, and he becomes a sort of armourer; and thus the certainty of being able to exchange all the surplus part of the produce of his own labour, which is over and above his own consumption, for such parts of the produce of other men's labour as he may have occasion for, encourages every man to apply himself to a particular occupation, and to cultivate and bring to perfection whatever talent or genius he may possess for that particular species of business.-SMITH's Wealth of Nations.

COLLECTION OF ICE IN ST. PETErsburg. As soon as a fall of snow announces the commencement of winter, in London, and as soon as the horse and duck-ponds in the environs are covered with a pellicle of ice, so soon do the provident fruiterers, confectioners, and fishmongers sally forth in order to collect where with to fill their cellars. Who knows if another opportunity may occur? Not so the conditor of Petersburg: he has no such fears; and the same operations which announce, in southern climates, the approach of winter, are with us the harbingers of spring. It is our snow-drop which now lifts its head above the surface in form of a pillar of ice: it is, in fact, during Lent that the peasants commence their operations on the river.

Towards the end of January the ice has attained its maximum of thickness: I hardly know the average, but in 1838 a block of ice which I measured was forty-four inches English in solidity. Symptoms of cutting for ice are first observable by the inclosures of large surfaces of the river within slight railings. These inclosures are intended to prevent drunkards from falling into the ice-holes when they may be reeling across the river at night; and notwithstanding this precaution, the accident does sometimes occur.

As soon as a square space is thus marked out, the operation commences by excavating a ditch on all sides, and thus insulating the square mass of ice. This ditch is formed by repeated strokes of a pointed crow-bar, which shelves off large brittle masses at each stroke, and as the depth increases, these are shovelled out. As soon as the ditch is pierced to the surface of the water, the latter rises up, and the inclosed mass is now floating loose upon the water. It is as yet a single solid square of ice, which is divided into equal portions by rule and line; and a few strokes of the crowbar are sufficient to split the pieces asunder. The most laborious part of the operation consists in extricating the solid masses from the water on which they float. A small wooden machine, much resembling the dray upon which beer-barrels are drawn along the pavement in London, is employed for this purpose. It is introduced under the floating masses, which, by means of poles and hooks, are placed singly upon it; a curved rising extremity prevents the mass from slipping off when lodged upon its bars, and by means of ropes attached to the other extremity of the dray it is hauled out by main force. The greatest difficulty occurs in the extrication of the first block of ice, from want of room: when one is hauled out, the difficulty of removing the remainder is much diminished.

When they are all safely landed upon the shore of snow, and set up perpendicularly, they resemble from a distance the stones upon Salisbury Plain, which go by the name of Stonehenge. If neither sand nor extraneous matter has been introduced into the block while freezing, it is beautifully transparent, like a mass of pure glass. The least particle of matter which may have insinuated itself in the act of congelation, renders the whole mass of a dirty muddy appearance. The under surface is always smooth like a pane of glass; the upper, rough from the indentations made into the frozen snow which covers it. Here it is set on end and exposed to sale, like stones from a quarry, and may be purchased wholesale or retail. As it is generally destined for the ice-cellar, it is usual to contract for the supply of this during the year. As many blocks as are necessary to fill the cellar are conveyed by drays to its mouth; here they are broken up into small fragments, and shovelled in like coals in London. The consumption of ice is great in the hot weather. It is a sine qua non in housekeeping; all meat is preserved by being laid upon it, and all fermented liquors must be cooled in the same way. The great brewers consume two thousand tons annually, to prevent the beer becoming sour in hot weather. The butchers consume enormous quantities, and every housekeeper, nay, almost every peasant, boasts of his ice-cellar. As much as a guinea's worth is consumed by a moderate establishment yearly. It is collected during a period of two months; but the earlier in the season that the cellars are supplied the better. If the blocks of ice be long exposed to the rays of the sun after they have been extricated from the river, disintegration commences, the mass becomes porous, falls easily to pieces, and, when stowed in the cellar, dissolves too rapidly. Ice is retailed in the shops at about a farthing per pound all the year through. If the summer have been long and hot, the price of course varies with the supply on hand. It is plentifully served up on the tables in fragments, which are put into tumblers of French wines for common drink. Champagne is never served up but in ice.-Life of a Travelling Physician.

THE more we are destitute of opportunities for indulging our feelings, as is the case when we live in uncongenial society, the more we are apt to crisp and harden our outward manner to save our real feelings from exposure. Thus I believe that some of the most delicate-minded men get to appear actually coarse, from their unsuccessful efforts to mask their real nature; and I have known men disagreeably forward from their shyness; but I doubt whether a man does not suffer from a habit of self-constraint, and whether his feelings do not become really, as well as apparently, chilled. It is an immense blessing to be perfectly callous to ridicule, or, which comes to the same thing, to be conscious, thoroughly, that what we have in us of noble and delicate, is not ridiculous to any but fools, and that if fools will laugh, wise men will do well to let them.-DR.

ARNOLD.

THE KITCHEN GARDEN.

XII.
DECEMBER.

Along each window's transverse edge,
Along the roof's o'erhanging ledge,
And garden-wall, whose bevell'd cope
Slants inwards with descending slope,
Constrain'd its trickling course to stop
By hand unseen, the liquid drop
In many a lucid row depends;
And gathering more and more, extends
Its taper length, as bright and clear

As pendant in a lady's ear.

O'er the bare hedge or coppice brown On shelter'd bank, and open down,

Or where the garden's living skreen
Of laurel shows its pleasant green;
The leaves, the twigs, the bending stems
Of tender herbage shine with gems

Of solid pearl; or what may seem,
As, waving in the orient beam
They round their sparkling rays diffuse
Of changeful light, and varied hues,
The sea-green beryl's brilliant shine,
Or diamond from Golconda's mine.

MANT'S British Months. THE month of December is often one of "dull unwonted rest," in which the implements of the husbandman and of the gardener either find less active employment than usual, or are altogether laid aside. Whether the crisp and frozen soil denies all attempts at culture, or whether the storms and floods of winter have fully set in, covering the meadows with slime and ooze, and drenching garden-ground, till it can absorb no more; the effect is much the same. But more complete is the suspension of all labour when, by an early fall of snow, the whole face of nature is suddenly changed.

Thick fall the floating flakes, as light,
As fine, as soft, as pure, as white,
As the wind-waver'd egret's crest;

Or the warm down that lines the breast Of swans, or hyperborean geese By winter bleach'd; or like the fleece Fresh from the strea that whitens o'er, Heaps upon heaps, the shearing-floor What time the jocund shepherds cull From summer flocks their weight of woo. During this month the generality of plants are in their profoundest torpor, and this, with the uncertain state of the weather, tends to a suspension of gardening operations; yet there are many of the minor employments which may still be carried on in tolerably open weather. There may still be roots of carrot, parsnip, and beet to dig up and store, or celery-beds to earth up, or small salading to raise in frames. If the weather be propitious, it may be prudent to sow, in a warm situation, peas, beans, and radishes, all of which must be well protected with long litter, or fern-leaves. Spinach and other crops may be cleared of weeds, the remainder of the fallen leaves may be added to the compost heap, and the work of digging and trenching still carried on. The preparation of manure for hot-beds is also an employment of the month that largely occupies the attention of many gardeners. A hot-bed is usually constructed of stable manure that has lain in a conical heap for about ten days, and has been well worked once or twice during that time, so as for the inner portions to be brought to the outside. Some gardeners allow the manure to lie thus for three or four weeks before they employ it for a hot-bed; but it is considered a general rule, that when the straw that is blended with it becomes of a darkbrown colour, the bed ought to be formed immediately. Coal, ashes, leaves, or tar may be mixed into the heap with advantage, supposing that the manure be not recent, but if fresh, they are apt to excite too high a degree of fermentation.

Hot-beds should be so situated as to be free from the shadow of trees or outbuildings, and should face a little eastward of south. They are better when founded on the surface of the ground, than when sunk in a

trench. It is also advisable to give a gentle inclination to the bed from north to south. The manure is carefully separated, and laid regularly on with the fork: it is also well beaten down with the same implement, rather than by treading, for if too much compressed, a high degree of heat is generated, but is soon spent, or if the treading be carried to excess, the contrary effect is produced, and there is no heat at all.

The breadth of a bed must always be from four to five feet, and the height three and a half, which, in summer, may be lessened to two feet. After a time the heat of the bed will naturally decline, when linings or coatings, as they are called, of hot fermenting manure must be laid all round the bed to the whole of its height, in order to renew the heat as much as possible throughout the whole mass. As the spring advances, the warmth of the sun will compensate for the cooling of the manure; but a moderate coating, or at least a layer of litter or grass-mowings, should be applied round the bed as a protection.

While various precautions, such as experience only can well teach, are necessary to prevent the decline of heat in the bed, others also must be observed to prevent its excess, which would soon have an equally injurious effect on the tender roots of plants. It is a common practice to put the plants in pots, which are plunged into the earth of the hot-bed, but which can be raised an inch or two from the bottom of the holes they are inserted in by means of a stone. A better plan is that of placing them within other pots a little larger, but not sufficiently so for the first pots to slip quite to the bottom. Thus between the inner and the outer pot there is a space filled with air, and the heat of the bed cannot then injuriously affect the roots. When it is of consequence to have the temperature of a hot-bed regulated with great exactitude, the thermometer is used, and for this purpose an ingenious method is made use of for admitting the instrument into the bed. A wooden case lined with baize is prepared for the thermometer, and is fitted with a cap of tinned iron to exclude the exterior temperature, while at the end where it enters the earth, it is shod with perforated copper. Trying sticks are also employed; these are smooth laths of wood, which being plunged into the bed and then withdrawn, give some idea of the heat within.

The air within the frames of a hot-bed naturally deteriorates in a very short time, and requires frequent renewal. This makes it necessary to raise the glasses at intervals, and without proper precautions the young plants within the bed frequently receive a check from this sudden admission of a cold foggy or frosty air. Matting is sometimes put over the opening; but there will always be some danger of mischief during unfavourable weather. A plan has been suggested by a celebrated vegetable physiologist (Dr. Hales), which, if it becomes universal, will probably prove an effectual preventative of injury from this cause. A pipe is passed through the body of the bed, one end communicating with the exterior air, the other opening into the frame, at one of the top corners of which an aperture is made. As warm air always ascends, the vitiated atmosphere within the frame will always be passing off at this opening, while a supply of pure air from without will always be rising through the pipe to supply its place. Thus a regulated state of the air in the frame will be constantly ensured without the necessity of raising the glasses.

In

The sowing and rearing of cucumber seed is stated by an experienced gardener to be the most perplexing and difficult operation of the untoward season (December and January) in which it is usually carried on. the preparation of the seed-bed for this crop the manure is arranged as described above, and the frame and lights put on for a few days previous to earthing, to draw up the heat, which will soon be accomplished, so that it will be necessary to allow some of it to escape, by tilting up

the lights two or three inches at the back, for the steam to evaporate. When ready for earthing, the frame is taken off, and the surface stirred for about a foot, and then pressed down and levelled. The frame is then replaced, and some very rich light mould, to the depth of about ten inches, is put on the bed. This will be warm enough in a day or two to admit of sowing the seed, either in pots or pans, which are plunged to half their depth. Each three-light frame will require about ten or a dozen plants, so that the sowings can be regulated accordingly. If the weather is very severe at the time of sowing, a quantity of dry straw or litter is heaped round the bed to keep in the heat. The seed soon vegetates, and in two or three days grows up into strong plants, but at this time all the care just alluded to will be necessary, in the regulation of the atmosphere. If the seedlings appear dry, a little water will be necessary, and if the weather be severe and stormy, a mat or thin canvas is kept over the portion of the frame where the outer air enters, supposing no tube of the kind noticed be adjusted to the frame. The seedlings will very soon be of sufficient size for transplanting into pots, which process, according to the sensible method adopted by Rogers, is as follows. Small pots, generally called sixties, are prepared by covering the hole at the bottom with a little half-consumed dung, which draws the roots considerably, and then filling them with earth half way up, rather hollowed in the middle, in which two plants are put, the roots towards the centre, and the upper part bending towards the edge of the pot. The roots are then covered with about an inch of mould, the pots plunged in the bed, and each slightly watered from a bottle which has been filled and allowed to remain two or three days in the frame to regulate its warmth. The light is next closed down, and if the sun shines brightly a little hay is scattered on it to prevent the sudden drooping of the young plants. Unless there is much. steam in the bed the light may be kept close until the morning, with some additional covering if the weather requires it. This must be removed early in the morning, and the steam let off from the frame.

As soon as the plants have formed two joints the leading bud is pinched off, and the seedlings will soon afterwards send out runners. In about a fortnight the plants will be fit for planting out finally in frames. The beds for the more advanced plants are made in a similar manner to those for the seedlings, and the same care is necessary in regulating the heat. The mould in these beds is placed in hillocks or ridges, so that when the plants are turned out of the pots they may be supported by the hillock within a few inches of the glass, under which four of the best plants are set an inch or two lower than they were in the pots. In a few days after planting, the mould at the bottom of the ridge of earth is examined, and if there is any sign of the heat being too great, a few holes are made with a dibble, and a little water poured in. The "burning" of the earth as it is called, is a fatal evil, arising from an insufficient working of the manure, or too great haste in covering it with mould. The care required during the first two months of the cultivation of the cucumber is far greater than those of any subsequent period. The art of managing a hot-bed, and raising this crop, has been acquired by many an amateur whose studies, we might have supposed, would have led him to far different objects. Thus does Cowper, in his poem entitled The Garden, admirably describe the whole process of preparing a hot-bed.

The stable yields a stercoraceous heap, Impregnated with quick fermenting salts, And potent to resist the freezing blast: For, ere the beech and elm have cast their leaf Deciduous, when now November dark Checks vegetation in the torpid plant Exposed to his cold breath, the task begins. Warily, therefore, and with prudent heed, He seeks a favour'd spot; that where he builds

The agglomerated pile his frame may front
The sun's meridian disk, and at the back
Enjoy close shelter, wall, or reeds, or hedge
Impervious to the wind. First he bids spread
Dry fern or litter'd hay, that may imbibe
The ascending damps; then leisurely impose,
And lightly, shaking it with agile hand
From the full fork, the saturated straw.
What longest binds the closest forms secure,
The shapely side, that as it rises takes,
By just degrees, and overhanging breadth,
Sheltering the base with its projected eaves;
The uplifted frame, compact at every joint,
And overlaid with clear translucent glass,
He settles next upon the sloping mount,
Whose sharp declivity shoots off secure
From the dash'd pane the deluge as it falls.
He shuts it close, and the first labour ends.
Thrice must the voluble and restless Earth
Spin round upon her axle, ere the warmth,
Slow gathering in the midst, through the square mass
Diffused, attain the surface: when, behold!
A pestilent and most corrosive steam,
Like a gross fog Boeotian, rising fast,
And fast condensed upon the dewy sash,
Asks egress; which obtain'd, the overcharged
And drench'd conservatory breathes abroad,
In volumes wheeling slow, the vapour dank
And, purified, rejoices to have lost
Its foul inhabitant. But to assuage
The impatient fervour, which it first conceives
Within its reeking bosom, threatening death
To his young hopes, requires discreet delay.
Experience, slow preceptress, teaching oft
The way to glory by miscarriage foul,
Must prompt him, and admonish how to catch
The auspicious moment, when the temper'd heat,
Friendly to vital motion, may afford
Soft fomentation, and invite the seed.

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