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but we are apt to believe that those who talk of halcyon skies, of odorous gales, of leafy thickets filled with the chorus of nature's songsters,-to say nothing of Ladies of the May, and morrice-dancers in the sunshine,-have drawn their images from the Southern poets.

In such a season,—which makes us linger over our fires, when we ought to be strolling in the shade of bright green lanes, or loitering by a gushing rivulet to watch the trout rise at the sailing fly,—some nameless writer has seen a single feeble swallow, and has fancied the poor bird was a thing to moralize upon :

He has come before the daffodils, Presumptuous one ! his elders knew
The foolish and impatient bird :

The dangers of those fickle skies;
The sunniest noon hath yet its chills, Away the pleasure-seeker flew—.

The cuckoo's voice not yet is heard, Nipp'd by untimely frosts he dies. The lamb is shivering on the lea,

There is a land in Youth's first dreams The cowering lark forbears to sing,

Whose year is one delicious May, And he has come across the sea

And Life, beneath the brightest beams, To find a winter in the spring.

Flows on, a gladsome holiday; Oh! he has left his mother's home : Rush to the world, ungvided youth,

He thought there was a genial clime Prove its false joys, its friendships hollow, Where happy birds might safely roam, Its bitter scorns,—then turn to truth,

And he would seek that land in time. And find a lesson in the unwise swallow.

Away with these wintry images. There is a south wind rising; the cold grey clouds open ; the sun breaks out. Then comes a warm sunny shower. A day or two of such showers and sunshine, and the branches of the trees that looked so sere

“Thrust out their little hands into the ráy." * The May of the Poets is come;-at any rate we will believe that it is come. WORDSWORTH shall welcome it in a glorious song :

Now while the birds thus sing a joyous song,

And while the young lambs bound

As to the tabor's sound,
To me alone there came a thought of grief ;
A timely utterance gave that thought relief,

And I again am strong :
The cataracts blow their trumpets from the steep,
No more shall grief of mine the season wrong ;
I hear the Echoes through the mountains throng,
The Winds come to me from the fields of sleep,

And all the earth is gay

Land and sea
Give themselves up to jollity,

And with the heart of May
Doth every beast keep holiday ;-

Thou Child of Joy,
Shout round me, let me hear thy shouts, thou happy

Shepherd Boy!
Ye blessed creatures, I have heard the call

Ye to each other make; I see
The heavens laugh with you in your jubilee ;

My heart is at your festival,

My head hath its coronal,

The fulness of your bliss, I feel—I feel it all. • We quote Leigh Hunt from memory; for he has not printed the poem in which this live occurs, in the recent edition of his works.

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Oh evil day ! if I were sullen
While the Earth herself is adorning,

This sweet May-morning,
And the children are pulling,

On every side,
In a thousand valleys far and wide,

Fresh flowers; while the sun shines warm,

And the babe leaps up on his mother's arm. WORDSWORTA.
SPENSER shall paint "fair May” and her train, in noble words,

Then come fair May, the fairest maid on ground,
Deck'd all with dainties of her season's pride,
And throwing flowers out of her lap around :
Upon two brethren's shoulders she did ride,
The twins of Leda, which on either side
Supported her like to their sovereign queen :
Lord ! how all creatures laught when her they spied,

And leapt and danced as they had ravish'd been,
And Cupid self about her flutter'd all in green.

SPENSER. JAMES I. welcomes the May, as if Scotland had no cutting winds to shame his song a * Away, wiuter, away!"

Now was there made, fast by the Toure's wall,

A garden fair, and in the corners set
Ane herber green, with wandes long and small

Railed about ; and so with trees set,

Was all the place, and hawthorn hedges knet,
That life was none walking there forby
That might within scarce any wight espy
So thick the bewes and the leaves green

Beshaded all the alleys that there were,
And middes every herber might be seen

The sharpe, greene, sweete juniper,

Growing so fair with branches here and there,
That, as it seemed to a life without,
The bewes spread the herber all about.
And on the smale greene twistes sate

The little sweete nightingale, and sung
So loud and clear the hymnes consecrate

Of love's use, now soft now loud among,

That of the gardens and the walles rupg
Right out their song and on the couple next
Of their sweet harmony; and lo the text :-
Worshippe, ye that lovers been, this May,

For of your bliss the kalends are begun,
And sing with us, Away, winte

Come, summer, come, the sweet season and sun ;

Awake, for shame! that have your heavens won,
And amorously lift up your heades all ;
Hark, Love, that list you to his mercy call.



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A poet of the Shaksperean age has the same lesson, "Rejoice in May:"-When May is in his prime,

Full strange it is, yet some, we see, Then may each heart rejoice :

Do make their May in June. · When Maybedecks each branch with green, Thus things are strangely wrought, Each bird strains forth his voice.

Whiles joyful May doth last. The lively sap creeps up

Take May in time: when May is gone, Into the blooming thorn :

The pleasant time is past. The flowers, which cold in prison kept, All


that live on earth, Now laugh the frost to scorn.

And have your May at will, All Nature's imps triumph

Rejoice in May, as I do now, Whiles joyful May doth last;

And use your May with skill. When May is gone, of all the year Use May, while that you may, The pleasant time is past.

For May hath but his time;
May makes the cheerful hue,

When all the fruit is gone, it is
May breeds and brings new blood, Too late the tree to climb.
May marcheth throughout every limb, Your liking and your lust
May makes the merry mood.

Is fresh whiles May doth last :
May pricketh tender hearts

When May is gone, of all the year Their warbling notes to tunc.

The pleasant time is past.

EDWARDS. After this old English Epicurean philosophy of " Take May in time," the Transatlantic child of our native muse can scarcely be called original :The sun is bright,—the air is clear, All things rejoice in youth and love,

The darting swallows soar and sing, The fulness of their first delight ! And from the stately elms I hcar And learn from the soft heavens above

The blue-bird prophesying spring. The melting tenderness of night. So blue yon winding river flows,

Maiden, that read'st this simple rhyme, It seems an outlet from the sky, Enjoy thy youth, it will not stay ; Where, waiting till the west wind blows, Enjoy the fragrance of thy prime,

The freighted clouds at anchor lie. For, oh it is not always May!
All things are new;—the buds, the leaves, Enjoy the spring of love and youth,

That gild the elm-tree's nodding crest, To some good angel leave the rest; And even the nest beneath the eaves ; For time will teach thee soon the truth, There are no birds in last year's nest! There are no birds in last year's nest !

LONGFELLOW. But who can be original with a theme upon which poets in all ages have written? We forgot the ditty which Master Touchstone calls “a foolish song :"

Between the acres of the rye, It was a lover and his lass, With a hey, with a ho, with a hey, no With a hey, and a ho, anda hey, no neeno, &c . nee no,

These pretty country fools did lie, And a hey no nee no ni no,

In spring time, &c. That o'er the green corn-fields did pass, This carol they begun that hour In spring time, the only pretty ring-time with a hey, and a ho, and a hey, no nee no, &c. When birds do sing, hey ding, a ding, a ding; How that life was but a flower, Sweet lovers love the spring.

In spring time, &c. In spring time, the only pretty ring-time, Then pretty lovers take the time, When birds do sing, hey ding, a ding, & With a hey, anda ho, anda hey, no nee no, &c. ding;

For love is crowned with the prime, Sweet lover's love the spring.

In spring time, &c.* * We print this, as it is giren in Mr. Chappell's excellent collection of old English Songs, from an ancient MS. The reader may compare it with the versiou in " As You like it.'


Daniel WEBSTER. [The following is extracted from a Lecture delivered before the Boston Mechanics' Institu. tion, in 1848. Mr. Webster is one of the most distinguished living orators of the United States, and, what is higher praise a man of benevolent and pacific views.]

Human sagacity, stimulated by human wants, seizes first on the nearest natural assistant. The power of his own arm is an early lesson among the studies of primitive man. This is animal strength ; and from this he rises to the conception of employing, for his own use, the strength of other animals. A stone, impelled by the power of his arm, he finds will produce a greater effect than the arm itself ; this is a species of mechanical power. The effect results from a combination of the moving force with the gravity of a heavy body. The limb of a tree is a rude buit powerful instrument; it is a lover. And the mechanical powers being all discovered. like other natural qualities, by induction, (I use the word as Bacon used it,) or expericnce, and not by any reasoning à priori, their progress has kept pace with the general civilization and education of nations. The history of mechanical philosophy, while it strongly illustrates, in its general results, the force of the human mind, exhibits, in its details, most interesting pictures of ingenuity struggling with the conception of new combinations, and of deep, intense, and powerful thought, stretched to its utmost to find out, or deduce, the general principle from the indications of particular facts. We are now so far advanced beyond the age when the principal, leading, important mathematical discoveries were made, and they have become so much matter of common knowledge, that it is not easy to feel their importance, or be justly sensible what an cpoch in the history of science each constituted. The half frantic exultation of Archimedes, when he had solved the problem respecting the crown of Hiero, was on an occasion and for a cause certainly well allowing very high joy. And so also was the duplication of the cube.

The altar of Apollo, at Athens, was a square block or cube, and to double it required the duplication of the cube. This was a process involving an unascertained mathematical principle. It was quite natural, therefore, that it should be a tradi. tional story, that by way of atoning for some affront to that god, the oracle commanded the Athenians to double his altar; an injunction, we know, whick occupied the keen sagacity of the Greek geometricians for more than half a century before they were able to obey it. It is to the great honour, however, of this inimitable people, the Greeks, a people whose genius seems to have been equally fitted for the investigations of science and the works of imagination, that the immortal Euclid, centuries before our era, composed his Elements of Geometry ; a work which, for two thousand years, has been, and still continues to be, a text book for instruction in that science.

A history of mechanical philosophy, however, would not begin with Grecco There is a wonder beyond Greece. Higher up in the annals of mankind, nearer, far ncarer, to the origin of our race, out of all reach of letters, beyond the sources of tradition, beyond all history except what remains in the monuments of her own art, stands Egypt, the mother of nations ! Egypt! Thebes! the Labyrinth the Pyramids! Who shall explain the mysteries which these names suggest The Pyramids! Who can inform us whether it was by mere numbers, and patience, and labour, aided perhaps by the simple lever ; or if not, by what forgotten combinations of power, by what now unknown machines, mass was thus aggregated to mass, and guarry piled on quarry, till solid granite secnied to cover the earth and reach the skies ?

The ancients discovered many things, but they left many things also to be discovercil; and this, as a general truth, is what our posterity, a thousand years hence, will be able to say, doubtless, when we and our generation shall be recorded also among the ancients. For, indeed, God scems to have proposed his material universe as a standing perpetual study to his intelligent creatures ; where, ever learning, they can yet never learn all ; and if that material universe shall last till man shall havo discovered all that is unknown, but which, by the progressive improvement of his faculties, he is capable of knowing, it will remain through a duration beyond human micasurement, and beyond human comprehension.

The ancients knew nothing of our present system of arithmetical notation ; nothing of algebra, and, of course, nothing of the important application of algebra to geometry. They had not learned the use of logarithms, and were ignorant of Auxions. They had not attained to any just method for the mensuration of the earth, a matter of great moment to astronomy, navigation, and other branches of useful knowledge. It is scarcely necessary to add, that they were ignorant of the great results which have followed the development of the principle of gravitation.

In the useful and practical arts, many inventions and contrivances, to the production of which the degree of ancient knowledge would appear to us to have been adequate, and which seem quite obvious, are yet of late origin. The application of water, for example, to turn a mill, is a thing not known to have been accomplished at all in Greece, and is not supposed to have been attempted at Rome till in or near the age of Augustus. The production of the same effect by wind, is a still later invention. It dates only in the seventh century of our era. The propulsion of the saw by any other power than that of the arm is treated as a novelty in England so late as in the middle of the sixteenth century. The Bishop of Ely, ambassador from the Queen of England to the Pope, says he saw, " at Lyons, a sawInill driven with an upright wheel, and the water that makes it go is gathered into A narrow trough, which delivereth the same water to the wheels. This wheel hath a piece of timber put to the axletree end, like the handle of a broch (a hand organ), and fastened to the end of the saw, which being turned with the force of water, hoisteth up the saw, that it continually eateth in, and the handle of the same is kept in a rigall of wood from severing. Also the timber lieth, as it were, upon a ladder, which is brought by little and little to the saw by another vice.” From this description of the primitive power-saw, it would seem that it was probably fast only at one end, and that the broch and rigall performed the part of the arm in the common use of the hand-saw.

It must always have been a very considerable object for men to possess, or obtain, the power of raising water otherwise than by mere manual labour. Yet nothing like the common suction-pump has been found among rude nations. It has arrived at its present state only by slow and doubtful steps of improvement; and, indeed, in that present state, however obvious and unattractive, it is something of an abstruse and refined invention, It was unknown in China until Europeans visited the “ Celestial Empire ;” and is still unknown in other parts of Asia, beyond the pale of European settlements

, or the reach of European communication. The Greeks and Romans are supposed to have been ignorant of it, in the early times of their history; and it is usually said to have come from Alexandria, where physical science was much cultivated by the Greek school under the patronage of the Ptolemies.

These few and scattered historical votices of important inventions have been introduced only for the purpose of suggesting that there is much which is both curious and instructive in the history of mechanics : and that many things, which to us in our state of knowledge seem so obvious that we should think they would at once force themselves on men's adoption, have, nevertheless, been accomplished slowl and by painful efforts.

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