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TOL. 4.]

Nature's Diary-Forest Trees.


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DESCRIPTION OF FOREST TREES. When these nuts are eaten by the Beech (fagus sylvatica.) - The human species, they occasion giddiness

beech is the most beautiful tree our

and headache; but after being well island produces.

In stateliness and dried and ground, they have been found grandeur of outline, it vies with the to make wholesome bread; and have oak. Its foliage is peculiarly delicate also occasionally been roasted, and and pleasing to the eye, and therefore used as a substitute for coffee. preferable to the lime, for ornamental

Beech mast oil, expressed from the plantations, particularly in parks, where mast, after it has been shelled and the mast, in fruitful years, will be ser- pounded, is used in many parts of 'viceable to the deer: its branches are France and Silesia instead of butter ; numerous and spreading, and its stem according to some accounts, it is little

inferior to oil of olives. grows to a great size. The bark is extremely smooth and

The thickness of the foliage of the silvery, which, together with the ele- beech, and the wide spreading of its gance of its foliage, gives a pleasing branches, which invited the shepherds neatness and delicacy to its general of Italy to repose beneath its shade, appearance.* Beeches thrive best on during the heats of noon, are twice incalcareous hills. They have been troduced into the beautiful scenery of found at the height of 5,132 English Virgil's Eclogues, in lines familiar to feet, on some of the Alpine mountains, most of our readers. The use of its

In Hereford and Monmouthsbire, smooth and green bark, for receiving the beech is converted into charcoal; inscriptions from the sylvan pen of and, in several countries, its leaves are lovers,' is noticed by the same poet. used for beds, instead of feathers. The Ovid, in his Epistle from Enone to wood of this tree is almost as necessary

Paris, refers to the custom, line 21, to the cabinet-makers and turners of and adds the beautiful thought of the the metropolis, as oak is to the ship- dame of the fair-one growing and builder.

spreading with the growth of the The nuts or mast of the beech afford tree :food for deer, swine, squirrels, &c. The beeches, faithful guardians of your flame,

Bear on their wounded trunks Enone's namel; * The BEECH TREE'S PETITION.

And as the trunks, so still the letters grow: O leave this barren spot to me!

Spread on; and fair aloft my titles show. Spare, woodman, spare the beechen tree !

The wood of the beech was formerly, Though bush or flow'ret never grow

as at present, made into cups and My dark, unwarming shade below; Nor summer bud perfume the dew

bowls, which received an additional of rosy blush, or yellow hue ;

value from the hands of the carver. Nor fruits of Autumn, blossom-born,

(See Virgil, Ecl, iii, 36.) My green and glossy leaves adorn ; Nor murm'ring tribes from me derive

BIRCH, Common (betula alba).Th'ambrosial amber of the hive ;

The birch will grow in forests where Yet leave this barren spot to me ;

no grass appears, among bogs and Spare, woodman, spare the beechen tree!

mosses, and on the sides of mountains, Thrice twenty summers I have seen

where its light pendent foliage, mingled The sky grow bright, the forest green ; And many a wintery wind have stood

with the fir and mountain-ash, constiIn bloomless, fruitless solitude,

tutes some very pleasing woodland Since childhood in iny pleasant bower

scenery. Some of the most gloomy First spent its sweet and sportive hour ; Since youthful lovers in my shade

and desolate scenes in North Wales Their vows of truth and rapture made;

are enlivened by the appearance of And on my trunk's surviving frame

the birch. Carved many a long-forgotten name.

The common birch is easily propaOh! by the sighs of gentle sound, First breathed upon this sacred ground;

gated, either from seeds or layers, and By all that love hath whispered here,

will tourish in most soils. Or beauty heard with ravished ear ;

The wood of this tree was, in antient As love's own altar honour me,

times, used for the construction of Spare, woodman, spare the beechen tree!

boats, and at present, on account of its

T. Campbell 3C ATHENCO M. Vol. 4.

hardness, is employed, in the north of

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Celestial Apparition.

(VOL.4 Europe, for making carriages and in those northern countries where po wheels. In France, it is generally other deciduous tree will grow to any used for wooden shoes; and in Eng- size. The wood is applied to various land, for women's shoe heels, travelling domestic purposes : the Tartars, and boxes, &c. ; it also affords very good other neighbouriog nations, cover their fuel. In Sweden, it is employed for huts with its bark; and the navigators covering houses, and is very durable. of the Volga construct portable boats, On deeply wounding or boring the cradles, vessels

, &c. from the same trunk of this tree, in the beginning of materials. It serves the North Amerispring, a sweetish juice exudes in large can Indians for canoes, and upon it quantities; and one branch alone will plans of their travels are drawn. But yield a gallon in a day. This juice is the birch is so necessary to the Laplanrecommended in impurities of the blood. der, that he could scarcely exist without By proper fermentation, and with the it. Of the outer bark, when cut into addition of sugar, it makes a pleasant thongs and interwoven, they make wine.

fishing-shoes, ropes, baskets, and many Evelyo, in recording the numerous other utensils : it affords, also, an exuses of the birch, thus sums up the cellent cloak, with which the head is long catalogue :-"To say nothing of covered as a defence against rain. the magisterial fasces, for which, The dwarf-birch (betula nana,) antiently, the cudgels were used by the plant confined to cold countries, and lictor, for lighter faults ; as now the found only in the northero part of our gentler rods by our tyrannical pæda- island, is also highly serviceable to the gogues

Laplander, though a humble shrub Birch-trees, when old, have their scarcely two feet in height. For the bark rough and indented. “What a ptarmigan (tetrao lagopus,) the only fine doublet of white satin is worn by bird who does not migrate southward the hirch,' says Swist, struck with its during winter, lives under the snow on glossy bark, so distinguishable from the seeds and catkins of this plant for every other. The beauty of its branches many months in the year, and supplies and foliage induced our ancestors to the Laplander with a principal part of adorn their festivals with it. • It serveth his food during autumn and winter, well,' says Gerard, to the decking up The branches piled up regularly, and of houses and banqueting rooms, for covered with the skin of a rein-deer, places of pleasure, and for beautifying form his bed at home, and only seat. of streets, in the cross and gang (pro- He also burns the shrub, which, hy its cession) weeke.'

constant smoke, drives

away The birch is of very extensive use the chief annoyance of the Laplander.

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the gnats,


From the Literary Gazette.

to entitle it to a place among the less grave

matters with which we are iv the practice CELESTIAL APPARITION.

of diversifying, and we hope enlivening, If our readers can pot faith in the annexed

the pages of the Literary Gazette. story, we shall never hear more of that bourne whence no traveller returos; should To the Editor of the Literary Gazette. they be incredulous, we trust it will amuse

SIR, them, as it has us, by its quaintness and originality. It would be well perhaps for HAVI

AVING cast a cursory glance sober seose, that whenever

over some of your latter Numbers, “ Well attested, and as well believed, jo which I accidentally perceived a Heard solemn goes the goblin story round;

narrative of an “ Apparition of Captain Till superstitious horrors creep o'er all”as distinctly traced and attributed to the the following singular story. I must the fabric of heated imagination could be Campbell,” I am induced to send you workings of a vivid dream, as in the pres- however premise that the letter from ent instance. The manner in which the which I am about to copy, was written poor widower describes his visitation, bas we think, enough of the entertaining in it to a most intimate friend of mine, by



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VOL. 4.]
Celestial Apparition.

403 one of the first literary characters of the may peruse this, I can assure you

with day, who himself prefaces the account perfect truth, that nothing of that fear with the following observations. I copy or dread possessed me, but rather the from his owo hand writing.

highest satisfaction and joy of having an “ Of the truth or falsehood of the opportunity of conversing with my dear following narrative," writes the gentle- friend, for so I must call her, the conman alluded to, every reader will jugal ties that subsisted while in this judge for himself. It is proper, however, world being now totally dissolved. to inform him, that the transcriber was • I said to her · I need not inquire well acquainted with the persons men- about your happiness, as I was always tioned in it ; of whom the writer of the confirmed of it while you was in this relation was a merchant, who had world. I assured you of it in your last however received an education, at an sickness, but now I see evident tokens University, of plain good sense, and of it in your countenance and deportwho maintained, during lise, an ex- meot every way.

Indeed while you cellent moral character, but the farthest was an inhabitant of this earth, you was thing in the world from that of an en- always possessed of a sweetness and thusiast. Of the lady, who was his affability of temper, of such striking (the transcriber's) near relation, he will piety, uprightness and integrity, as made only say, that the character given of her you justly beloved and esteemed by all in the following detail is just and ap- your acquaintances. But now I see propriate. Her piety, although sincere, such splendour in your countenance, was remote from all ostentation : and such dignity every way surrounding she was upon the whole one of the you, as bespeaks an inhabitant of the most amiable women he ever knew. blessed, as also one of a very high rank. About two years only have elapsed “To this my beloved friend answersince the gentleman's death."

ed, “No, I am not of very high rank in This is dated 27th November, 1787, the blessed abodes ; but thanks to my and then follows the transcription of God and my dear Saviour for the the merchant's owo story.

happiness I enjoy, which is as great as “Upon Saturday evening, 2d Sep- my present nature is capable of. And tember, 1769, betwixt the hours of I know I will be still rising to greater eleven and twelve at night, as I was degrees of happiness, and nearer to about to fall into an agreeable sleep, I perfection in the blessed city of my God, was gently awaked by a soft whisper- which I now inhabit, as I see all that ing poise, which entered at my room- enter do. Thus much I have liberty to door, and stopped at my bedside, communicate to you ; and also, that if Though it was not disagreeable, yet I had improved the talents which God I never felt any thing in the world Almighty gave me, while on earth, have such an effect upon my senses, for better than I did, i.e. had I advanced awfulness and solemnity. And there is farther in the exercise of holiness, piety, nothing on earth I can remember, that justice, and benevolence, and thereby has any resemblance to it, except a attained to a greater degree of excellence sweet zephyr gently gliding through a in this life which you possess, then I grove ; and even that is but a very should have been directly placed in imperfect representation of it.

such a higher station in those blessed “I immediately raised myself up, mansions, as my nature was capable of and drew by the curtain, when to my enjoying. And such happiness may great but most agreeable surprise, my they all expect who go on improving in dear wife, who departed this life but virtue and goodness, while they are in two months ago, was present before this lower world.' me. And notwithstanding the natural “ Charmed with the conversation of äversion which poor mortals generally this celestial inhabitant, I ventured to have to the inhabitants of another world, ask her another question : Pray, my and even to those who have been their dear heavenly guest, may I ask, bow dear companions, yet, my friend, who the blessed above employ themselves ?


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what are their distinct exercises and shocking notions of the Deity, as to berecreations, if they have any


lieve him to be an arbitrary and tyranniMy dear friend, I know but little cal being to his rational creatures. What myself as yet, though much more than pity is it that these poor deluded creayou could bear to hear in your mortal tures will not allow themselves to be state ; but I will let you know what I undeceived in this respect! For by all am permitted, and what your present I can learn, the blessed above have state will bear. You may be sure that many recreations, but they are all of a considerable part of our time is taken an abstracted and pure nature, spiritual ụp, at stated periods, in worshipping, and intellectual ; and the result of all serving, and praising our great Almigh- is, that they are thereby enabled more ty, and his son, our dear Saviour. Our and more to praise, love, and adore the worship and services are pure and quite infinite perfections of their great Masabstracted, removed from the smallest ter, who is the Lord of all things. For degree of imperfection; our songs and lately happening to approach near a choral symphonies charm beyond ex- company of glorious beings, many depression ; the number and variety of grees above my sphere, and seeing our instruments are almost iofinite, and, them very


serious and prowhen joined together, nothing so sweet, found contemplation, I ventured to so truly great, glorious and transcend- join them, which they encouraged, for ing, can be conceived. You must the highest order of beings in our celest know that I cannot bear such glories tial abodes are pleased when those of but at a great distance from the throne the lowest rank mix in their company, of God, the centre of our worship and and they forward their knowledge as praise, but I expect to be admitted much as possible, and their conception nearer and nearer, as my natue will of things; for all of us, even those of bear, according to that progressive order the highest order of our kingdom, are and regularity that subsists in our re- still going on to perfection, without a gions. This relation, you must know, possibility of ever arriving at the sum. is most part from the information of mit. Besides, you must know that one of a much superior rank to me, our inbabitants bave unspeakable wbo deigns to converse with me now pleasure in being agreeable to their and then, and whose superior knowledge fellow-citizens, especially to those of gives me the greatest pleasure.

And the lowest orders. This is the effect who knows but this same benevolent of that universal benevolence which being may be appointed by the Almigh- does and will forever reign in those ty to converse with me, and to instruct happy regions. me, until I come to a greater degree of “After mixing in this company, maturity; for these go on gradually, as although I could not perfectly underthey do with you, no supernatural stand their language, yet I was sure that force being applied. My terrestrial they were talking of some extraordinary friend, you ask me whether the heavenly excursion which they had lately made, inhabitants have any recreations. You to view the wonders of a certain world, know that there are many Christians either newly-created or which they had upon your eartb, otherwise well-mean- never seen before. And Oh, how were ing people, and inoffensive in their they delighted with the beauty and lives, who, were you to ask such a magnificence of its structure, and the question, would think it next to blas- exact symmetry and proportion of its phemy. You will know them by their parts ! Now and then they would fall dismal aspects and melancholy coun- prostrate in their adoration of Him that tenances, which appear chiefly in their sits upon the throne, and of the Lamb, religious exercises, occasioned by the for ever and ever. I understood that wrong notions of religion which they they bad observed something new and have imbibed in their youth, and which curious in it, which they had not seen most part of them never give up, and before in any part of the universe. And by which they have conceived such now, my terrestrial friend, I must think

VOL. 4.]

Celestial Apparition.



that viewing the wonders of the Al- about to leave you, never to meet agaio mighty in their different universes of on earth, and that it was altogether upworlds with which he has filled infinite on your account that I undertook such space, must be po small part of the a journey, knowing your anxiety and delightful exercises of the blessed in pain of mind at my departure from the heaven.'

world. I hope that you will be no more • Oh, my dear friend, who may read grieved for the loss of me, nor sorrow this, think how my ears were charmed after an ungodly manner. I am transwith such heavenly discourse, which lated from this low transitory earth to encouraged me to ask another question, the regions of bliss and immortality, • Pray,dear celestial citizen,' said I, do for without this motive and of myself 1 the souls that leave this earth, and come had no inclination to come, although I to inhabit your blessed abodes, do they sojourned on earth upwards of half a know their relations, companions, and century, and, bodily distempers exceptacquaintances, whom they had on this ed, lived as happily as a mortal could earth, when they meet in heaven ?' •Of do during that time. But now such is this,' she replied, 'I cannot inform the relish we have for our celestial enyou, having yet seen none of them, I joyments, that we lose all taste for our mean none of my terrestrial acquain- terrestrial ones. This is the reason tances. You cannot imagine what why so few incline or are permitted to millions and myriads are with us ; and revisit this earth.' all that can arrive from your earth, were “ Having thus spoken, my celestial all that ever breathed in it to come,would Visitant in a moment disappeared and be alınost as nothing and unobserved left me.” among the infivite multitudes in our regions. But I have no doubt that

I make no apology, Mr. Editor, for such souls as in your earth were happy sending you the above, which is a literal together in the exercise of virtue, or in and faithful transeript from the original

in any of the divine or social graces, and my possession.

It adds to the sin-, who had great pleasure in studying and gularity, and probably to the interest, conferring together on these subjects on that a gentleman of high literary charearth, may meet together and renew

acter and acknowledged attainments, their friendship in the regions above; should have given perpetuity, and some but to talk of any subject relating to degree of credibility, to this most wontheir terrestrial affairs, I am sure such drous tale. I sball conclude with his would be far below their nature, and remark: “Of the truth of this story would be but grovelling in those blessed each one must judge for himself, merely maosions,

observing, that the good lady had not, ". My dear celestial being, since probably from hershort abode in heaven, you bave been so communicative, may I lost her habit and sexual characteristic dare to ask you another question ? of prolixity, and that through the whole Have you yet seen the Beatifick Vision, of her long and digressive colloquy, her or can you give me any description of spouse seems to have listened with a it? What I have said on our worship, very habitual, and laudable deference adoration, and praise of the Deity,' she and patience.”

” replied, may answer the question. I

I am, Sir, &c. &c. B. know little of this glorious sight as yet, and was I permitted to communicate

From the New Monthly Magazine, Nov. 1816. what I know, it would so shock your earthly frame, that you would wish to The increase of crimes of late years in this have known pothing about it. My ap- thentic and incontrovertible documents; and

country has been lamentably proved by auproaches to the beatifick vision are yet it is distressing to find that each calendar of at a great distance; I must wait tili I the Old Bailey continues progressively to inam more inured to the divine sight, till for all manner of offences.

crease in the number of culprits to be tried

But perhaps my nature be more refined and spirit- there never was a period when such hardenualized, before I can enjoy it perfectly. all the feelings of humanity have been mani

ed depravity, sich monstroos callousness to And now know, my friend, that I am fested as at tåe present. We shudder at be

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