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Clare's Shepherd's Calendar, whence the lines are taken on the preceding page, affords a natural picture of the waning year.
Nature now spreads around, in dreary hue,
At every trifle will his eye detain :—
And cows at lair in rushes, half conccal'd; With groups of restless sheep who feed their fill.
O'er clear'd fields rambling wheresoe'er they will;
The nutters, rustling in the yellow woods,
Haunting each common's wild and ,onely nook.
Where hedges run as crooked as the brook, Shielding their camp beneath some spreading oak,
And but discovered by the circling smoke,
Like spots of snow-shine in dark fairy rings. Wild shines each hedge in autumn's gay parade;
And, where the eldern trees to autumn fade.
And, with its merry partner. Makes up the peasant's cheer.
Like to a painted map the landskape lies; And wild above shine the cloud-thronged skies.
That chase each other on with hurried pace,
Waken, like spirits, in a startled mood ,
Till drops the sudden calm :—the hunted mill
Is stopt at once, and every noise is still; Save crows, that from the oak treea quawkmg spring,
Dashing the acorns down with beating wing, Waking the wood's shorn sleep in noises low, Patting the crimpt brake's withering bro»below;
And whirr of starling crowds, that dim the light
With mimic darkness, in their numer** flight;
Or shrilly noise of puddocks* feeble wail.
To cheer the lone bard's solitary way;
with death; . Then all is still o'er woods and field and plain. As nought had been, and nought would be
Most of the winter birds which frequent our islands arrive in October. Numerous sea fowls at stated periods, or at uncertain intervals, perform short migrations to and from different parts of the island. The ring-ousel comes soon after Michaelmas; the Royston crow arrives in October; the redwing about the middle of October; the fieldfare and woodcock keep arriving all October and November; the snipe and jack arrive during the same period,—some hens breed here; the pigeon, or stockdove, comes towards the end of November, and some abide here all the year, with the wood pigeon and ring dove; some of which arrive in spring, and others perform partial migrations. Among occasional visitors, which frequently change their summer a"d win tar I quarters, we have the wila swan, wild ! goose, wild duck, pochard, and teal. The grosbeak, crossbill, and silk tail, or waxen chatterer, appear at uncertain intervals.
When great abundance of winter migratory birds, particularly fieldfares, arrive early, they usually forbade a hard winter. The same prognostic of a severe season is to be inferred from the early or numerous migration of wild geese, wild ducks, and other winter fowls, or the appearance of sea gulls in the inland marshes.
The harsh screaming of aquatic fowls, as they pass over us, may often be heard at night, when they themselves are unseen. Cranes, storks, geese, and ducks, all fly by night as well as by day; and the stork is the only one of them who is not clamorous: he takes to wing in silence, and pierces the aerial regions unheard. Cranes, on the contrary, are the most sonorous. Dr. Forster saw a flight of them in November, 1799,at Hackney,in Middlesex; they flew at an immense height. The flight of cranes has been always notable; and Homer, in a beautiful passage, compares it to the march of the Trojan phalanx. In summer they spread themselves over the north n.' Europe ana Asia, as far- as the arctic circle, and in winter they are met with in the warmer regions of India, Syria, Egypt, &c, and ?! me Care of Good Hope. The course of their flight is discovered by the loud noise they make; for they soar to such a height as to be hardly visible to the naked eye. Jeremiah, vii. 7, notices the annual migration of cranes and storks, as also that of the swallow. The story is well known of a brass plate fixed on a swallow, with this inscription, "Prithee, swallow, whither goest thou in winter?" The bird returned with the answer subjoined, "To Anthony of Athens, why doest thou inquire?" The elevated and marshalled flight of wild geese, like that of cranes, seems dictated by geometrical instinct. Shaped like a wedge, they cut the air with less individual exertion; and it is conjectured that the change of its form from an inverted V, an A, and L, or a straight line, is occasioned by the leader of the van's quitting his post at the point of the angle through fatigue, dropping into the rear, and leaving his place to be occupied by another.*
The temperature of this month is peculiarly favorable to the brewing of malt liquor, being neither too hot nor too cold. For ales, however, which require long keeping, the month of March is by some deemed the preferable season.
In October, chickens, pullets, capons, and turkeys, are in high order for the spit. Beef and mutton improve in quality while hares, pheasants, wild ducks, wid geons, teal, plovers, woodcocks, snipes and larks, are added to the former list of viands, and continue in season for the remainder of the year. Cod, which has been absent from table since April, now reappears for the winter season: herrings also, having spawned, are by some connoisseurs more esteemed than in the spring of the year. Oysters, particularly the native Milton and Colchester, are full fed, and in high flavor. Potatoes have attained to proper growth and mealiness, and carrots are in perfection. The dessert chiefly consists of peaches, grapes, apples, pears, and plums.
Kitchen Garden Directory.
Small salading; lettuces; radish, ice. J n the first week.
Mazagan beans; peas, the early frame; at the end of the month.
Slips of many kinds of the sweet herbs; early in the month.
Fndiveand lettuce ; into warm borders.
Early York cabbage; about the middle or latter end.
A few fine roots of beet, carrot, and parsnep, to rise from seed.
Carrots, parsnips, beet, Hamburgh p u ley; a few ro ts for early supply, or to preserve in sa id. Potatoes, the winter stock, for pitting, or storing in dry cellars or sheds.
Celery in the trenches, and endive.
Clear from weeds the beds of winter spinach, lettuce, broccoli, cabbages, &C. ; and dig lightly, and draw earth to the stems of all the brassies tribe.
Hoe, rake, destroy weeds, and remove litter of every kind.
Prepare arching with hoops, &c, over those beds or patches of tender crops which are to be covered with mats or tarpaulins for protection during frosty and severe weather.
Decor Day. The first day of October is appointed by act of parliament for commencing to decoy wild-fowl in Lincolnshire, whence the London markets are chiefly supplied with wild ducks, teals, and widgeons: in a single season 31,200 of these birds have been sent to the metropolis from Wainfleet*
Autumn gale 1 sweet autumn gale!
Baste with sighs to woo the rose.
Hither, hither, autumn gale!
Autumn gale !—away, away!
* Butler's Chronological Exercises.
Lift that dusky pall, and s'»rw
So ends an " Evening Song," in the library i at " Old Court," which Grace sings without music to one of Purcell's airs." These, and more of such verses, are in "A Fireside Book," a little volume of delightful tales and melodies, suited to a mind that would "study to be quiet."
2nd October 1394 king Richard II. after a truce with France landed with a large force at Waterford in Ireland, and succeeded in reducing to obedience the natives, who in the absence of the English barons and knights from their estates had intercepted and refused the revenues. His object was principally achieved by hospitality, and by extensive largesses, to the chiefs of the different kingdoms into which the country was divided. Richard's pleasure on accomplishing the object of this expedition was marred by the death of his favorite, Robert de Vere, who was killed in Brabant by the tusk of a wild boar. The minion's body was brought to England and viewed by tl e king, who consoled himself by alloting to the remains a splendid funeral, at which, like Edward II. at the obsequies of Piers Gaveston, he attended almost alone. The king had previously lost his amiable wife,
whom the people styled "good queen Anne." This lady commenced the custom of riding on side saddles. Before her time, women rode on horseback astride, like men.
Froissart in his chronicle gives very interesting particulars of Richard's expedition in Ireland. Although a native of Flanders and an ecclesiastic, a large portion of Froissart's life was spent in the courts of this king and Edward III. Nothing can exceed the amusing manner in which he tells his tales. In the most wild fantastic narrations he rivets the reader's attention. His history, though strictly true, has the air of a romance from the numberless exploits of chivalry which he celebrates. He looks on a knight as little less than an angel, and pays St. James the compliment of calling him "Le saint Baron St. Jacques." In one part of his works he exults in having lived with the great and elegant, and partaken of their dainties, and especially of the "spiced wines," which were the last and most valued regale with our ancestors, before they went to rest. He was a poet as well as an historian. In 1397 he presented to Richard IL, as he was sailing on the Thames, a book, finely illuminated, bound in crimson velvet with silver bosses and clasps and gold in roses. "What is the subject V said the king ;" D'Amour," answered Froissart: Richard smiled upon him, and ordered that he should be well entertained. After a careful collection of different MSS. Mr. Johnes rendered a translation into English of Froissart's chronicle, which he printed at the Hafod press, in quarto, with variations and additions, and fac simile engravings from curious and beautiful original illuminations of the time. There is an admirable translation by John Bouchier, knight, lord Berners, in the reign of Henry VIII. printed by R. Pynson 1525, recently reprinted, and edited by Edward V. Utterson, Esq.
• h. m.
October 2.—Day breaks . . 4 20
Lone-leaved starwort flowers.
Summer Bergainot pears ripe.
Early in October, 1818, a robin during the mild weather of that season was seen
tohGver and alieht constantly near the Trafa'gar, a new ship of 100 nuns building in the dock-yard at Chatham, to commemorate Lord Nelson's victory. Curiosity was excited by this frequency of the bird's visits—when it was discovered that she had formed a nest in the ship, and had nearly completed her labours. The motions of the bird were purposely observed, and on the morning of the 2 1st of October 1818, the anniversary of the victory, she laid her first egg and subsequently five others.
The Orphan Boy's Tale.
Stay, lady, stay, for mercy's sake.
And hear a helpless orphan's tale, Ah! sure my looks most pity wake,
'Tis want that makes my cheek so pale. Yet I was once a mother's pride,
A nd my brave father's hope and joy * But in the Nile's proud fight he died.
And I am now an orphan boy.
Poor foolish child! how pleased was I,
Along the crowded streets to fly,
And see the lighted windows flame 1
To force me home my mother sought.
For with my father's life 'twas bought.
The people's shouts were long and loud.
"Rejoice! rejoice 1" still cried the crowd , My mother answered with her tears.
"Why are you crying thus," said I,
"While others laugh and shout for joy?"
She kiss'd me—and with such a sigh!
*' What is an orphan boy t" I cried,
My mother through her tears replied, "You'll know too soon, ill-fated child '."
And now they've toll'd my mother's knell,
O lady,—I have learnt too well
Oh! were I by your bounty fed!
Nay, gentle lady, do not chide,— Trust me, I mean to earn my bread;
The sailor's orphan boy has pride.
Lady, you weep !—ha t—this to me t
Look down, dear parents I loon and see
October 3 Daybreak' . . 4 22
Sun rises . . .6 16 — sets ... 5 44 Twilight ends . 7 38 The second, or autumnal, flowering of hawkweed.
1744, October 4, Harry Carey destroyed himself at his house, in Great Warner-street, Coldbath-fields. He was a popularwit, a dramatic writer, and amusical composer. He studied music under Olaus Westeinson Linnert, a German, and received some instruction from Rosein grave, and was finally a disciple of Geminiani. He published a small collection of poems in duodecimo, 1713. In the " Provoked Husband" are some of his songs, and his farce of the " Contrivances' contains several pretty airs of his own composition. In 1734, to burlesque the bombast common to the tragedies of the day, he wrote "Chrononhotonthologos." Mr. Noble derives one of the characters in this piece "Aldiborontifoscophornio," from" Aldeboroni-fuscophoni, a great giant, mentioned in Sprigg's "Philosophical Essayes, with brief viviso's," printed at London, in a very small size, 1657, from a hint in Ralph's "Touchstone." He wrote the "Dragon of Wantley," and, as a companion, the "Dragoness," both set to music by Lampe. These were intended to ridicule the prevailing taste for the Italian opera. His " Musical Century, or a hundred English ballads," were, he said, "adapted to several characters and in cidents in human life, and calculated for innocent conversation, mirth, and instruction ;" and, in 1743, he published by subscription his dramatic works, in a small quarto volume. Mr. Noble says, "This man of song and whim is an instance, among many others that I have remarked, of those who seem to live without care, and pretend to be occupied only with exciting pleasantry, having, when alone, the most severe afflictions. Life must have its serious moments; and the important duties must be performed, or distress will unavoidably approach. ThatCarey was highly admired by the public at large, the subscriptions to his works evidently prove. He had wit, and wit that was felt; but nothing causes so much
5th October, 1694, Evelyn says, in his diary, "I went to see the building beginning near St. Giles, where seven streets make a star from a Doric pillar placed in the middle of a circular area, said to be built by Mr. Neale, introducer of the late lotteries in imitation of those at Venice, now set up here for himself twice, and now one for the state." It appears that this Mr. Neale was a speculator. He took a large piece of ground on the north side of Piccadilly, of Sir Walter Clarges. He was to lay out 15,000/. upon it in building, but did not, and Sir W alter got lease back and built Clarges street.
October 5. Day breaks . . 4 27 Sun rises ... 6 20 — sets ... 5 40 Twilight ends . 7 33
An Autumnal Evening.
It is as combining the decline of the day with that of the year, the period both of beauty and decay, that an Evening i* Autumn becomes so generally the parent of ideas of a solemn and pathetic cast. Not only, M in the first of these instances, do we blend the sun-set of physical with that of moral being, but ■» fuither source