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congregation, and they were moved by it. They exerted themselves to render her situation more comfortable, and to lighten her afflictions. It was, however, but smoothing a few steps to the grave. In the course of a Sunday or two after, she was missed from her usual seat at church, and before I left the neighborhood, I heard, with a feeling of satisfaction, that she had quietly breathed her last, and gone to rejoin those she lo in that world where sorrow is never known, and friends are never parted.

LESSON LXIX.


The American Republic.-BYRON.

The name of Commonwealth

past and gone, Over three fractions of the groaning globe :Venice is crushed, and Holland deigns to own

A sceptre, and endures a purple robe : If the free Switzer' yet bestrides alone His chainless mountains, 'tis but for a time; For tyranny of late has cunning grown, And, in its own good season, tramples down The sparkles of our ashes. One great clime, Whose vigorous offspring by dividing ocean Are kept apart, and nursed in the devotion Of Freedom, which their fathers fought for, and Bequeathed-a heritage of heart and hand, And proud distinction from each other land, Whose sons must bow them at a monarch's motior As if his senseless sceptre were a wand Full of the magic of exploded science Still one great clime, in full and free defiance, Yet rears her crest, unconquered and sublime, Above the far Atlantic! She has taught Her Esau-brethren that the haughty flag, The floating fence of Albion's feebler crag, May strike to those whose red right hands have bought Rights cheaply earned with blood. Still, still, for ever Better, though each man's life-blood were a river, That it should flow, and overflow, than creep Through thousand lazy channels in our veins, Dammed, like the dull canal, with locks and chains,

And moving, as a sick man in his sleep,
Three paces, and then faltering :- better be
Where the extinguished Spartans still are free,
In their proud charnel of Thermopylæ,
Than stagnate in our marsh ;-or o'er the deep
Fly, and one current to the ocean add,
One spirit to the souls our fathers had,
One freeman more, AMERICA, to thee!

LESSON LXX.

1

An Evening Sketch.-BLACKWOOD'S MAGAZINE.

9

The birds have ceased their song,
All, save the black cap, that, amid the boughs
Of
yon

tall ash tree, from his mellow throat,
In adoration of the setting sun,
Chants forth his evening hymn.

'Tis twilight now;
The sovereign sun behind his western hills
In glory hath declined. The mighty clouds,
Kissed by his warm effulgence, hang around
In all their congregated hues of pride,
Like pillars of some tabernacle grand,
Worthy his glowing presence ; while the sky
Illumined to its centre, glows intense,
Changing its sapphire majesty to gold.
How deep is the tranquillity! the trees
Are slumbering through their multitude of boughs
Even to the leaflet on the frailest twig !
A twilight gloom pervades the distant hills;
An āzure softness mingling with the sky.
The fisherman drags to the yellow shore
His laden nets; and, in the sheltering cove,
Behind yon rocky point, his shallop moors,
To tempt again the perilous deep at dawn.

The sea is waveless, as a lake ingulf'd
'Mid sheltering hills—without a ripple spreads
Its bosom, silent, and immensethe hues
Of flickering day have from its surface died,
Leaving it garb'd in sunless majesty.

With bosoming branches round, yon village hangs
Its row of lofty elm trees; silently
Towering in spiral wreaths to the soft sky,
The smoke from many a cheerful hearth ascends,
Melting in ether.

As I gaze, behold
The evening star illumines the blue south,
Twinkling in loveliness. O! holy star,
Thou bright dispenser of the twilight dews,
Thou herald of Night's glowing galaxy,
And harbinger of social bliss ! how oft,
Amid the twilights of departed years,
Resting beside the river's mirror clear,
On trunk of massy oak, with eyes upturn'd
To thee in admiration, have I sat
Dreaming sweet dreams till earth-born turbulence
Was all forgot; and thinking that in thee,
Far from the rudeness of this jarring world,
There might be realms of quiet happiness !

LESSON LXXI.

Autumn.-ALISON.

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THERE is an even tide” in the year,-a season, as we now witness, when the sun withdraws his propitious light,when the winds arise, and the leaves fall, and nature around us seems to sink into decay. It is said, in general, to be the season of melancholy; and if, by this word, be meant that it is the time of solemn and of serious thought, it is undoubtedly the season of melancholy ;-yet, it is a melancholy so soothing, so gentle in its approach, and so prophetic in its influence, that they, who have known it, feel, as if instinctively, that it is the doing of God, and that the heart of man is not thus finely touched, but to fine issues.

1. It is a season, which tends to wean us from the passions of the world. Every passion, however base or unworthy, is yet eloquent. It speaks to us of present enjoyment ;it tells us of what men have done, and what men may do, and it supports us every where by the example of many around us. When we go out into the fields in the even

We re

Whatever may

ing of the year, a different voice approaches us. gard, even in spite of ourselves, the still but steady advances of time,

A few days ago, and the summer of the year was grateful, and every element was filled with life, and the sun of Heaven seemed to glory in his ascendant. He is now enfeebled in his power; the desert no more “ blossoms like the rose;" the song of joy is no more heard among the branches ; and the earth is strewed* with that foliage which once bespoke the magnificence of summer. be the passions which society has awakened, we pause, amid this apparent desolation of nature. We sit down in the lodge “ of the way-faring man in the wilderness,” and we feel that all we witness is the emblem of our own fate. Such also, in a few years, will be our own condition. The blossoms of our spring,—the pride of our summer will also fade into decay ;-and the pulse that now beats high with virtuous or with vicious desire, will gradually sink, and then must stop forever.

We rise from our meditations with hearts softened and subdued, and we return into life as into a shadowy scene, where we have 6 disquieted ourselves in vain.” Such is the first impression which the present scene of nature is fitted to make upon us. It is this first impression which intimidates the thoughtless and the gay; and, indeed, if there were no other reflections that followed, I know not that it would be the business of wisdom to recommend such meditations. It is the consequences, however, of such previous thoughts, which are chiefly valuable; and among these there are two which may well deserve our consideration..

2. It is the peculiar character of the melancholy which such seasons excite, that it is general. It is not an individual remonstrance ;-it is not the harsh language of human wisdom, which too often insults, while it instructs us. When the winds of autumn sigh around us, their voice speaks not to us only, but to our kind ; and the lesson they teach us is not that we alone decay, but that such also is the fate of all the generations of man." They are the green leaves of the tree of the desert, which perish and are renewed.”

In such a sentiment there is a kind of sublimity mingled with its melancholy ;-our tears fall, but they fall not for ourselves ;-and, although the train of our thoughts may have begun with the selfishness of our own concerns, we feel that, by the ministry of some mysterious power, they end in awakening our concern for every being that lives.Yet a few years, we think, and all that now bless, or all that now convulse humanity will also have perished. The mightiest pageantry* of life will pass--the loudest notes of triumph or of conquest will be silent in the grave ;-the wicked, wherever active, “ will cease from troubling," and the weary, wherever suffering, “will be at rest.”

* Pron. ströde.

Under an impression so profound, we feel our own hearts better. The cares, the animosities, the hatreds which society may have engendered, sink unperceived from our bosoms. In the general desolation of nature, we feel the littleness of our own passions ;--we look forward to that kindred evening which time must bring to all ;-we anticipate the graves of those we hate, as of those we love. Every unkind passion falls, with the leaves that fall around us; and we return slowly to our homes, and to the society which surrounds us, with the wish only to enlighten or to bless them.

3. If there were no other effects of such appearances of nature upon our minds, they would still be valuable,—they would teach us humility,—and with it they would teach us charity. In the same hour in which they taught us our own frăgility, they would teach us commiseration for the whole family of man.-But there is a farther sentiment which such scenes inspire, more valuable than all ; and we knowlittle the designs of Providence, when we do not yield ourselves in such hours to the beneficent instincts of our imagination.

It is the unvarying character of nature, amid all its scenes, to lead us at last to its Author; and it is for this final end that all its varieties have such dominion upon our minds. We are led by the appearances of spring to see his bounty ; and we are led by the splendors of summer to see his great

In the present hours, we are led to a higher sentiment; and, what is most remarkable, the very circumstances of melancholy are those which guide us most securely to put our trust in him. We are witnessing the decay of the year ;-We go

back in imagination, and find that such, in every generation, has been the fate of man ;-we look forward, and we see that to such ends all must come at last ;-we lift our desponding eyes in search of comfort, and we see above us, One, “ who is ever the same, and to whose years there is no end.” Amid the vicissitudes of nature, we discover that central

* Pron. păd'-jun-tre.

ness.

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