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1. EVERY one knows, who lives in the country, what a chimney-swallow is. They are among the birds that seem to love the neighborhood of man. Many birds there are, that nestle confidingly in the protection of their superiors, and are seldom found nesting or breeding far from human habitations.

2. The wren builds close to your door. Sparrows and robins, if well treated, will make their nests right under your window, in some favorite tree, and will teach you, if you choose to go into the business, how to build birds' nests.

3. A great deal of politeness and fidelity may be learned. The female bird is waited upon, fed, cheered with singing, during her incubation, in a manner that might give lessons to the household. Nay, when she needs exercise and recreation, her husband very demurely takes her place, and keeps the eggs warm in the most gentlemanly way.

4. Barn-swallows have a very sensible appreciation of the pleasures of an ample barn. A barn might not be found quite the thing to live in, (although we have seen many a place where we would take the barn sooner than the house,} but it is one of the most charming places in a summer day to lounge, read, or nap in.

5. And, as you lie on your back upon the sweet-scented hay-mow, or upon clean straw thrown down on the great floor, reading books of natural history, it is very pleasant to see the flitting swallows glance in and out, or course about under the roof, with motion so lithe and rapid as to seem more like the glancing of shadows than the winging of birds. Their mud-nests are clean, if they are made of dirt; and you would never dream, from their feathers, what sort of a house they lived in.

6. But, it was of chimney-swallows that we began to write; and they and they are just now roaring in the little, stubbed chimney behind us, to remind us of our duty. Every evening we hear them; for a nest of young ones brings the parents in with food, early and late, and every entrance or exit is like a distant roll of thunder, or like those oldfashioned rumblings of high winds in the chimney, which made us children think that all out-of-doors was coming down the chimney in stormy nights.

7. These little architects build their simple nests upon the sides of the chimney with sticks, which they are said to break off from dead branches of trees, though they might more easily pick them up already prepared. But they, doubtless, have their own reasons for cutting their own timber. Then these are glued to the wall by a saliva which they secrete, so that they carry their mortar in their mouths, and use their bills for trowels.

8. When the young are ready to leave, they climb up the chimney to the top, by means of their sharp claws, aided by their tail-feathers, which are short, stiff, and at the end armed with sharp spines. Two broods are reared in a season. From the few which congregate in any one neighborhood, one would not suspect the great numbers which assemble at the end of the season. Audubon estimated that nine thousand entered a large sycamore-tree, every night, to roost, near Louisville, Kentucky.

9. Sometimes the little nest has been slighted in building, or the weight proves too great, and down it comes into the fire-place, to the great amusement of the children, who are all a-fever to hold in their hands these clean, bright-eyed little fellows. Who would suspect that they had ever been bred in such a flue?

10. And it was just this thought that set us to writ

ing. Because a bird lives in a chimney, he need not be smutty. There is many a fine feather that lives in a chimney-corner. Nor are birds the only instances. Many men are born in a garret, or in a cellar, who fly out of it, as soon as fledged, as fine as any body. A lowly home has reared many high natures.

11. On these bare sticks, right against the bricks, in this smoky flue, the eggs are laid, the brooding goes on, the young are hatched, fed, grown. But then comes the day when they spread the wing, and the whole heaven is theirs! From morning to night, they can not touch the bounds of their liberty!

12. And, in like manner, it is with the human soul that has learned to know its liberty. Born in a body, pent up, and cramped, it seems imprisoned in a mere smoky flue for passions. But, when once faith has taught the soul that it has wings, then it begins to fly; and flying, finds that all God's domain is its liberty.

13. And, as the swallow that comes back to roost in its hard hole at night, is quite content, so that the morning gives it again all the bright heavens for its soaring-ground, so may men, close-quartered and cramped in bodily accommodations, be quite patient of their narrow bounds, for their thoughts may fly out every day gloriously.

14. And as, in autumn, these children of the chimney gather in flocks, and fly away to heavens without a winter, so men shall find a day when they, too, shall migrate; and, rising into a higher sphere, without storm or winter, shall remember the troubles of this mortal life, as birds in Florida may be supposed to remember the northern chills, which drove them forth to a fairer clime.

QUESTIONS.-1. What birds seem to love the neighborhood of man? 2. In what respects may men be like birds?


THE first part of each verse, or that portion read by the First Voice, should be expressed in a slow and despondent tone of voice: the second part, or that read by the Second Voice, should be expressed in a more sprightly and cheerful manner.




1. Where are the swallows fled?

Frozen and dead,

Perchance, upon some bleak and stormy shore.


O doubting heart!

Far over purple seas,

They wait, in sunny ease,

The balmy southern breeze,

To bring them to their northern homes once more.


2. Why must the flowers die?
Poisoned they lie

In the cold tomb, heedless of tears or rain.


O doubting heart!

They only sleep below

The soft, white, ermine snow,

While winter winds shall blow,

To breathe and smile upon you soon again.


3. The sun has hid its rays
These many days;

Will dreary hours never leave the earth?


O doubting heart!

The stormy clouds on high
Vail the same sunny sky,

That soon, (for Spring is nigh,)
Shall wake the Summer into golden mirth.


4. Fair Hope is dead, and light
Is quenched in night.

What sound can break the silence of despair?


O doubting heart!

The sky is overcast,

Yet stars shall rise at last,
Brighter for darkness past,
And angels' silver voices stir the air.


DECK' ED, dressed; arrayed.
TRAIL' ING, hanging down; follow-
ing one after another.

UN FAIL' ING, constant; continually.
UN PLIANT, stiff; unbending.
DE FI' ANT, daring; bidding defiance.
VES' PER, evening.

CRISP' ER, more brittle.
TREASURES, wealth; riches.
MER' IT, desert; goodness.
IN HER' IT, occupy; possess.
MOR' SEL, bit; small piece.
{ WAIL' ING, loudly lamenting.
RAIL' ING, clamoring.

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