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The oldest of the settlements in the Australian continent is New South Wales. It was to this part that convicts were sent after the loss of the American colonies. Many of these waifs and strays of society, the criminal outcasts of our country, afterwards settled and became prosperous in the land of their exile ; but as the exportations became more numerous the dangerous element grew so great that the government relinquished transportation, at the urgent request of the Australians. Formerly, Victoria formed part of New South Wales, but the discovery of gold in 1851 gave it an increased importance, and drew to it such immense numbers that in seven years its population in. creased sixfold. The gold fever, as it was called, attracted thousands of every class of workmen to Australia, so that in a few months large towns sprung into existence. Golddigging was for several years after 1851 the principal occupation of the people, but since then the numerous towns have given occupation, at high wages, to various kinds of artisans, while numerous settlements of capitalists or sheep farmers have opened up other channels of industry. The exports from the country are chiefly gold, copper, an. wool. Of gold, more than £20,000,000 has been yielded by Victoria alone in a year; of copper the supply from the Burra Burra mines is the largest in the world ; and of wool 50,000,000 lbs. (or more than 22,000 tons) are yearly exported to England. In return we send out various manufactured articles, flour, butter, ale, wine, and colonial produce, to minister to the comfort of the gold digger. Australia, therefore, alike from its exports and imports, forms one of our chief trading stations, and may be described not only as an excellent settlement for our superabundant population, but also as one of our very best customers.
The principal towns, the capitals of the different divi. sions, have already been mentioned. Melbourne, the capital of Victoria, has attained its present limits since 1837, having been founded in that year. Its population, constantly increasing, is already upwards of 125,000. The rapidity with which it has been built, and the comparative independence of its inhabitants, have joined in making it
very irregular, and far from beautiful in its architecture. The recklessness of gold diggers, and the expense of bringing goods from England, render prices very high, so that, though wages be liberal, the cost of living in Australian towns is also on an elevated scale.
New Zealand consists of three large islands, called North Island, South Island, and Stewart Island, and several smaller ones.
The coast is rocky, while the interior is mountainous and woody. The natives, with whom we have been engaged in several deadly battles, are a race not much inferior to Europeans in size or appearance. They are, however, rapidly decreasing in numbers. North Island is divided into four provinces, and South Island into five. The capital of the former is Auckland; of the latter, Nelson. Like Australia, New Zealand depends on the home country for many of its comforts. The class of emigrants are perhaps of a superior order to those who settle in Australia. The lustful thirst for gold attracts the greater part of the Australian settlers, but the more peaceful, if less profitable, occupation of farming and agricultural life is the goal of the emigrant to New Zealand.
An account of the British colonies at our antipodes would manifestly be incomplete without a passing mention of Tasmania, a fertile and beautiful island about one-fourth the size of Great Britain, situated opposite the coast of Victoria, from which it is divided by Bass Strait. Rich in coal and iron, covered with valuable timber and luxuriant pastures, and possessed of a climate resembling that of the south of France, this island offers advantages to emigrants that cannot be secured in Australia, and which are equalled only by those that render New Zealand so attractive to our countrymen.
1. Make a list of the places mentioned in this lesson. 2. Explain in your own words the reason why the antipodes have night when we have day.
3. What is the origin of the name Botany Bay?
4. Describe in your own words (a) the advantages and (b) the disadvantages of Australian life.
5. Compare the Australian settlers with those of New Zealand.
HANNAH F. GOULD.
val-ley (L. vallis], a hollow or low tract of land lying between hills, crest (L. crista, from crinis, hair), the comb or tuft on the head of a bird, the top or summit of anything. boughs (A.-S. boh, from bugan, to bend], the branches of a tree.
THE Frost looked forth one still, clear night,
In silence I'll take my way.
But I'll be as busy as they."
Of the quivering lake he spread
Where a rock could rear its head.
By the light of the morn were seen
All pictured in silver sheen !
“Now, just to set them a-thinking, * HANNAH F. GOULD was born at Lancaster, in Vermont, U.S., towards the close of the eighteenth century. She has contributed largely to American periodicals, and her poems, although short, are always pleasing, and show originality of treatment.
I'll bite this basket of fruit,” said he,
3. Transpose the following words in three different ways: Over the breast of the quivering lake he spread a coat of mril.
4. What are the requisites of a good rhyme ? Are the following rhymes correct : fair, there; bees, these; drest, breast ?
THE VISION OF MIRZA.
JOSEPH ADDISON. de-vo-tions (L. devotus, from de, away ; voveo, to vow], prayers, religious observances. hu-man (L. humanus, from homo, a man), belonging to man. sum-mit[L. summus, highest], the top, the highest point. ag-o-nies [Gk. agon, a contest], great sufferings, here the pangs of death. On the fifth day of the moon, which, according to the custom of my forefathers, I always keep holy, after having washed myself and offered up my morning devotions, I ascended the high hills of Bagdat, in order to spend the rest of the day in meditation and prayer. As I was here airing myself on the top of the mountains, I fell into a profound contemplation on the vanity of human life ; and passing from one thought to another, Surely, said I, man is but a shadow, and life a dream. Whilst I was thus musing I cast my eyes towards the summit of a rock that was not far from me, where I discovered one in the habit of a shepverd, with a little musical instrument in his hand. · As I looked upon him he applied it to his lips and began to play upon it. The sound of it was exceeding sweet, and wrought into a variety of tunes that were inexpressibly melodious and altogether different from anything I had ever heard : they put me in mind of those heavenly airs that are played to the departed souls of good men upon their first arrival in paradise, to wear out the impressions of the last agonies, and qualify them for the pleasures of that happy place. My heart melted away in secret raptures.
I had been often told that the rock before me was the
haunt of a genius; and that several had been entertained with that music who had passed by it, but never heard that the musician had before made himself visible. When he had raised my thoughts by those transporting airs which he played, to taste the pleasures of his conversation, as I looked upon him like one astonished, he beckoned to me, and by the waving of his hand directed me to approach the place where he sat. I drew near with that reverence that is due to a superior nature ; and as my heart was entirely subdued by the captivating strains I had heard, I fell down at his feet and wept. The genius smiled upon me with a look of compassion and affability that familiarised him to my imagination, and at once dispelled all the fears and apprehensions with which I approached him. He lifted me from the ground, and taking me by the hand,
Mirza,” said he, “I have heard thee in thy soliloquies ; follow me."
He then led me to the highest pinnacle of the rock, and placing me on the top of it, “ Cast thy eyes eastward,” said he, " and tell me what thou seest."
“I see,” said I, “ a huge valley and a prodigious tide of water rolling through it.”
“The valley that thou seest,” said he, “is the vale of misery, and the tide of water that thou seest is part of the great tide of eternity.”
“What is the reason,” said I,“ that the tide I see rises out of a thick mist at one end, and again loses itself in a thick mist at the other ?”
" What thou seest,” said he, “is that portion of eternity which is called Time, measured out by the sun, and reaching from the beginning of the world to its consummation. Examine now," said he," this sea that is bounded with darkness at both ends, and tell me what thou discoverest in it.'
“I see a bridge,” said I,“ standing in the midst of the tide.”
“ The bridge thou seest,” said he, “is Human Life ; con. sider it attentively."
Upon a more leisurely survey of it, I found that it consisted of threescore and ten entire arches, with several