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Quaker, as a kind of asylum for eight women, who have each a distinct house and garden ; but they are ranged together so as to form one large building, in the centro of which is a meeting-house for people of the founder's profession; and though originally the charity was intended for such, yet now those who are of a different persuasion, may be admitted members. - It is half a mile distant from Margate, and as most of the women employ themselves in knitting garters, laces, pin-cushions, &c. they have every day visitors and customers, in the ladies of that place...
I will shew you, says Amelia, as we went along, a very happy old woman ;-her father was a considerable trades. man at Canterbury, and educated her well ; but meeting with many losses, and dying insolvent, she was taken as an upper servant and companion, by tbe old lady I mentioned, who knew well her family: and who, though extremely rich herself, and bountiful in promises, at her death rewarded a faithful service of near thirty years with a paltry annuity of ten pounds. Having by her care saved about two hundred guineas, the added produce of this sum might have made her easy tezper perfectly contented; but trusting it with a nephew (to whom at her decease she meant to leave it) in order to put it out on good security, he embezzled the whole, and left her without the bope of retrieving a shilling of it.-By the assistance of a friend at Canterbury she got placed in this charity, on the first vacancy; and seems, in her little retirement, to have forgotten the disappointments of
Amelia had drawn the outlines of an interesting por! trait, and the sight of the original proved it a just one for it presented the figure of a little elderly woman, with
an eye full of vivacity, and such a calmness in all her features as bespoke the tranquility of the mind within. The simple neatness of her person was not more remarkable than that of her little habitation.--Every thing was set in order-every thing rubbed to a polish. In one end of the window lay her bible ; in the other, a basket of silks and worsteds, and the implements for her work. A jessamine tree nicely trimmed, and full of bloom, covered the outside of her dwelling: and before lay her little garden, where not a weed was to be seen, sprinkled with common herbs and vegetables, with here and there a cur. rant bush, and a few white lilies interspersed among them. - The pride of man, that is still pursuing happiness 'amid immense plantations, and extensive territories, must, after all its toils, be mortified to find it on such a patch of ground as this!
Amelia, who had sent up her tea-chest, made her old acquaintance sit down with us, and busied herself, as well 23 Marianne, in looking over some pin-cushions, and other trifles, which they had employed her to knit, for presents to their friends in town. I promised you, says Amelia, that I would one day or other bring up these gentlemen to see you ; and I believe it gives them more real pleasure than going to the ball-room at Margate.
· Ab! madam, replied the old woman, what is there to see in such a cottage as this? .
What a palace will hardly ever shew us, 'returned Amelia-A CONTENTED HEART.
That indeed, madam, is a blessing that Heaven hath bestowed on me through life. Though I fear sometimes, that the conduct of my unfortunate kinsman disturbed me more than it ought ;, for it grieved me, that what I
bad been years saving for the maintenance of my old age, should be squandered away in an instant 'by profligacy. But it pleased God it should be so ;and it pleased him also in my misfortune to raise me a friend, who unsolicited obtained for me the independency I enjoy in this place where I live madam, without a single care. If I have but little, I want but little--my garden, my work, and my book, fill up the greater part of the day; and as a most friendly intercourse subsists among us all, I can walk out, or converse with women of my own age and pursuits, who are drawing, like myself, toward the end of their journey, and more interested to look forward to another world, than to cast our attention backward on this.
Gracious Providence ! thought I, how erringly doth man judge of thy dispensations not considering that it is from the temper of the heart, not from the exterior parade of fortune, the decision must be made. If the riches and honours of the world are a blessing to some, they prove a burthen to more ; and though thrown into the-scale of many, thy impartial hand holdeth the balance, and giveth in counterpoise the patient mind, that possibly outweighs the whole !
When I contemplated this happy being at Draper's, and understood that the independency she boasted of from that place was only her little dwelling, six pounds, and half a chaldron of coals a year, and a stuff gown and petticoat every two years—when I saw such a full stream of content flow from so shallow a source-my bosom reproached me with a thousand recollected weaknesses, and I felt myself ashamed to have been so often put out of humour by the trivial occurrences of life.
Natural Appearances in February.
Now shifting gales with milder influence blow,
THE earlier part of this month may still be reckoned winter; though the cold generally begins to abate. The days are sensibly lengthened ; and the sun has power enough gradually to melt away the snow and ice. Sometimes a sudden thaw comes on, with a south wind, and rain, which at once dissolves the snow. Torrents of water then descend from the hills ; every little brook and rill is swelled to a large stream; and the ice is swept away with great violence from the rivers. The frost, however, re. turns for a time; fresh snow falls, often in great quanti. ties ;' and thus the weather alternately changes during most part of this month.
Various signs of returning spring occur at different times in February. The woodlark, one of the earliest and sweetest of our songsters, often begins his note at the very entrance of the month. Not long after rooks begin to pair, and geese to lay. The thrush and chaffinch then add to the early music of the groves. Moles go to work in throwing up their hillocks as soon as the earth is softened. Under some of the largest, a little below the surface of the earth, they make their nests of moss, in which four or five young are found at a time. These animals live on worms, insects, and the roots of plants. They do much mischief in gardens, by loosening and devouring flower-roots ; but in the fields they do no other damage, thap rendering the surface of the ground unequal by their
hillocks which obstruct the scythe in mowing. They are said also to pierce the sides of dams and canals, and let out the water : but this can only be an accidental occurrence, attended with their own destruction.
Many plants emerge from under ground in February, but few flowers yet adorn the fields or gardens. Snowdrops in general are fully opened from the beginning of the month, often peeping from the midst of the snow :
Already now the snow-drop dares appear,
And winter lingers in its icy veins. The alder-tree discloses its flower buds; the catkins of the hazel become very conspicuous in the hedges, and young leaves appear on the gooseberry and currant bushes. The farmer is impatient to begin bis work in the fields, as soon as the ground is sufficiently thawed. He ploughs up his fallows; sows beans and pease, rye and spring wheat; sets early potatoes ; drains his wet land ; dresses and repairs hedges ; lops trees, and plants those kinds which love a wet soil, as poplars and willows.
Winter in the Polar Regions. NOR are the symptoms of returning spring confined to the inhabitants of our temperate climate, they also begin, towards the middle of this month, to be sensibly felt by those of the icy regions of the north.
Their winter, however, is very different from ourse The single night of the country about Spitzbergen begins about the 30th of October. The sun then sets,