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the barnicle, by a natural progress, separate mo non desunt, qui ex quovis ligno nasci
“ But further, to explicate the method juxta Hebrides putredinem concipiant.”
“ Tertius progressionis modus naturæ est
nice, verè autem de Britannici Anatibus
Oceani, quas Aremorici partim Crabrant,
à matrice quoad absolutæ decidant in sub-
jectas aquas, unde sibi statim victum quæ-
inferior orders of creation was very
doctrines, which Kircher and Bonani
and similar excrescencies; and with
origin of the insects which they con-
. Ut nihil de iis di- sion to be surprised at the opinion of
Aristotle regarding the oyster and ex conchis proveniunt, ab iis, quæ ex pu- other testaceous animals, when in tridis lignis aut pomis ortum trahunt. Im- England there are birds resembling
ducks, which spring from the decay considered the character of Pontoppiof wood; and he thus ingeniously en dan's Works as by no means duly apdeavours to prove the existence of preciated. In his History of Norway one absurdity by mentioning another. there is much curious and valuable in
The last opinion is that which as formation regarding almost all the ansigns the generation of these wonder- imals of the North Sea, and of the ful birds to the shells mentioned in Scandinavian Peninsula; but combinour quotation from Gerard. These ed with this, there is, at the same shells we have frequently examined, time, such a mixture of good sense and no doubt the animal which they and credulity, that we are too often contain bears a sufficient resemblance left in a state of perplexity and doubt
. to a young bird, to confirm the pre- Concerning matters of fact he is usualjudices of an ignorant person.
ly accurate; although, from a peculiar “ This peculiar creature,” says Pontop- bias of his own mind, he is not always pidan, " is of about a finger's length and sufficiently careful in separating exaga a half, and an inch broad, and pretty thick; geration from truth. The character it is brown and spongy-a little curled or shrivelled like an apple when it is dryed ;
of his work, however, is far from bea so that at first it may be twice the length: ing generally understood, which is not Its neck is tough and hollow, like the fin.
to be wondered at, when we consider ger of a glove: when it is opened there is how few people are acquainted with nothing to be seen, but some small and fine it, farther than by means of some exdeep black filaments; these are like bunches tracts from the most remarkable passof fax all through. The one end of the ages regarding the Norwegian tradineck is made fast to the timber, in manner tions of mermaids and other extraorof a spunge; the other, or the end that dinary animals. Pontoppidan's crehangs down, has a double shell, of a light dulity, in fact, consisted more in the muscle-shell, but much less, about the size belief of certain mysterious powers and of an almond, and, like it, of a sharp oval attributes, which he supposed nature figure. When this shell is opened, there is to have bestowed upon particular anifound in it the little creature reported to be mals, whose existence has never been a young wild goose. Almost its whole sub- doubted, than in the adoption and stance, which is composed of small toughish narration of anecdotes tending to con. membranes, represents some little crooked firm the opinion of the vulgar regarddark feathers, squeezed together, their ends ing the more wonderful inhabitants of running together in a cluster ; hence it has the deep. His mind was imbued with been supposed to be of the bird kind. At the extremity of the neck also, there is a religious feeling, which in its essence something that looks like an extreme small bordered on superstition; and during bird's head; but one must take the force of his solitary excursions through those imagination to help to make it look so : this sublime though desolate regions of I have constantly found on many examina- Norway, which constituted part of his tions; and in all mine inquiries, I cannot diocese, who can wonder that to his learn that any one has ever seen any thing ears the wild tales of the shepherd and more, though there are many who pretend the wandering hunter found easy, ale to appeal to witnesses for the fact, that have seen this young goose, as they call it. I
cess ? Besides, those tales had their will allow that they have seen in this shell very foundation in piety and virtue. a living sea insect, as it certainly is, but no. They were associated with the kindlithing else. When the duck's egg is open
est and most beautiful affections of our ed, the young one is never found like this, nature; and on the belief of which consisting of nothing but feathers ; they on depended, in a great measure, the conducklings come
afterwards, in the place of tinuance of that moral purity which the down, which appears first ; but here is no down, and there seems to be no body, venerable bishop.* He seems, too, to
was the delight and the glory of the nothing but long, crooked, squeezed up feathers, with a little point, or small button, at the end, that may resemble a head, if
As an instance of the feeling to which fancy will have it so, as has been said.”' we allude, we may mention, that in NorPontopp. vol. 2d, p. 53.
way it is the custom, during the summer Here, as in many other instances,
months, to drive the cattle to places called the learned bishop shews a cautious of pasture. There they are tended merely
sæters, among the mountains, for the sake and philosophical spirit, for which, on by shepherdesses, who, from the remote si
: account of certain extraordinary things tuation of their huts or shealings, might be which he has related, little credit has considered as too much exposed to the dan. been assigned him. We have always gerous attacks of the bear, and other herce
have been fond of reflecting on the macreuse. The most curious thing exaggerated statements of the mental in the history of this production is, powers of the animal creation, gene- that by a public sentence pronounced rally with a view to exalt our ideas of on it in the Sorbonne at Paris, it was the wisdom of the Deity manifested declared, that for the reasons therein towards his creatures. He possessed contained, these geese were no longer indeed all the piety of Ray, Derham, or to be considered as birds, and were Paley, though unequal to these men in therefore allowed to be eaten in Lent, the rigour of his inductions. But we and during all fasting seasons. This must leave this digression.
is not the only instance of a law of The testimony of Giraldus is suffi- nature being set aside by a religious ciently decided regarding the last men- edict. It is, however, rather amusing tioned origin of the bernacle: “ Vidi to observe, that the birds (or fish, as multoties oculis meis plusquam mi they are considered), which are allownuta hujusmodi avium corpuscula in ed by the Catholic Church, are all of littore maris ab uno ligno dependen- the flat billed kind, which, feeding tia, testis inclusa et jam formata.” And less upon fish (properly so called) than Scaliger, though not so fortunate as to upon shell-fish, grain, and various ohave been an eye-witness of this in- ther substances, have a much more cipient transformation, mentions both delicate and palatable flesh. The flathe bird and the shell which produces vour of such kinds as feed solely on it.
fish, is, as Ray has well observed, The authors whom we have hither “ rank, ferine, and piscose,” which to mentioned, have treated this sub- would probably have been sufficient ject merely in a cursory manner, and to exclude them from the Pope's bill of as it were en passant. There was, fare, even if they had not been, accordhowever, a distinct treatise written on ing to the Bishop of Beauvais, a most the subject, by Michael Meyerus, un learned Dominican, “ nais de la chair.” der the title, De Volucri Arborea, in Certain it is, that such as may be eaten which that author zealously, and we without offence, are much less fishy may say successfully, endeavoured to in their composition than the tridace maintain the popular origin of the tylous web-footed birds, and the mere
gansers. Some time also will probably animals. It is currently reported in the coun. elapse before the Pope feels inclined try, and firmly believed by the bishop, that to dine upon a cormorant. as long as they remain in a state of inno.
Here follow parts of a relation cone cence, no animal dare injure them. This affords a beautiful illustration of the sublime cerning bernacles, by Sir Robert Moconceptions of Milton in the Comus :
ray, one of his Majesty's council for
the kingdom of Scotland, published in “ She that has that, is clad in complete steel;
in the year 1678.* And, like a quiver'd nymph with arrows keen,
“ Being in the Isle of East, I saw lying May trace huge forests, and unharbour'd
upon the shore a cut of a large fir-tree, of heaths,
about 2 foot diameter, and 9 or 10 foot Infamous hills, and sandy perilous wilds ;
long ; which had lain so long out of the Where through the sacred rays of chastity,
water, that it was very dry : and most of No savage fierce, bandit, or mountaineer,
the shells that formerly covered it, were Will dare to soil her virgin purity :
worn, or rubbed off. Only on the parts Yea, there where very desolation dwells
that lay next the ground, there still hung By grots and caverns shagg’d' with horrid multitudes of little shells, having within shades,
them little birds perfectly shaped, supposed She may pass on with unblenched majesty,
to be barnacles. These shells hang at the Be it not done in pride, or in presumption.
tree by a neck longer than the shell, of a Some say, no evil thing that walks by night, kind of filmy substance, round, and hollow, In fog or fire, by lake or moorish fen,
and creased, not unlike the windpipe of a Blue meagre hag, or stubborn inlaid ghost
chicken, spreading out broadest where it is That breaks his magic chains at curfew time, fastened to the tree, from which it seems to No goblin, or swart fairy of the mine,
draw and convey the matter, which serves Hath hurtful power o'er true virginity.
for the growth and vegetation of the shell, Hence had the huntress Dian her dread bow, and the
little bird within it. Fair silver-shafted queen, for ever chaste, “ This bird, in every shell that I opened, Wherewith she tam'd the brinded lioness
as well the least as the biggest, I found so And spotted mountain pard, but set at nought curiously and completely formed, that there The frivolous bolt of Cupid; gods and men Fear'd her stern frown, and she was queen o' the woods."
* Phil. Trans, vol. xii. p. 925.
appeared nothing wanting as to the exter ane saw. Apperit thair ane multitude of nal parts, for making up a perfect sea fowl; wormis throwing thaym self out of syndry every little part appearing so distinctly, that hollis and boris of this tree.
Sum of thaym the whole looked like a large bird seen war rude as thay war bot new schapin. through a concave or diminishing glass, co- Sum had baith heid, feit, and wyngis, bot lour and feature being every where so clear thay had na fadderis.
Sum of them were and neat. The little bill like that of a perfect schapin fowlis. At last the pep; 11 goose, the eyes marked, the head, neck, havund yik day this tree in mair admirabreast, wings, tail, and feet formed; the tion, brocht it to the kirk of Sanct Androis feathers every where perfectly shaped, and beside the town of Tyre, quhare it remains blackish coloured ; and the feet, like those zit to our days. And within two zeirs af. of other water-fowl, to my best remembrance. ter hapnit sic ane lyk tree to cum in ye All being dead and dry, I did not look af- firth of Tay, besyde Dunde, worme etin, ter the inward parts of them. But having and hollit full of zoung geis, in the samen nipt off and broken a great many of them,
Sicklike in the port of Leith, beI carried about twenty or twenty-four away side Edinburgh, within few zeirs after hapwith me. The biggest I found upon the nit sic ane lyke cais. Ane schyp, namit tree, was but about the size of the figure the Cristofir, (after that scho had lyin üü here representing them. Nor did I ever zeris at ane ankir in ane of thir isles,) was see any of the little birds alive, nor met brocht to Leith. And becaus bir tymmer with any body that did. Only some credible (as apperit) failzett scho wus brokin' down. persons have assured me, they have seen Incontinent apperit (as afore) al the inwart some as big as their fist.”
partis of hir worme etin, and all the hollis The only other quotation which we thairof full of geis, on the samyn maner as consider it necessary to make, in order wald allege be vane argument, that this
we have schawin. Attoure gif ony man to complete the relations given of these Cristofir was made of sic tries as grew birds by the older writers, is a very a
allenarly in the Iis, and that all the rutis musing one, prefixed to Bellenden's and treis that growis in the said Iles, are of Translation of Boece's “ History and that nature to be finally be nature of the Croniklis of Scotland," which, on ac seis resolvit in geis, we preif the cuntre count of its minuteness and curious thairof be ane notable example schawin style, we shall give at full length. afore our een. Maister Alexander GalThis venerable person seems to have loway, person of Kynkell
, was with us in been equally fortunate with some of ernist besynes to serche the verite of thir
thir Iles, gerund his mynd with maist the preceding authorities, having had obscure and mysty dowtis, and be adven“ ane notable example schawin afore ture liftit up ane see tangle hyngand full his een.”
of mussil shellis fra the rute to the branchis. “ Nestis now to speak of the geis generit Sone after he opnit ane of thir mussill of the see namit clakis. Sum men belevis schellis, bot thair he was mair astonist than that thir clakis growis on treis be the afore, for he saw na fische in it, bot ane nebbis. Bot thair opinion is vane. And perfit schapin fowle, small and gret, ay efbecaus the nature and procreatioun of thir ferying to the quantite of the schell. This clakis is strange, we have maid na lytyll clerk knawing us richt desirus of sie un. lauboure and deligence to serche ye treuth couth thingis, cum haistely with the said and verite yairoff'; we have salit through tangle, and opnit it to us with all circumthe seis quhare thir clakis ar bred, and fynd, stances afore rehersit. Be thir and mony be great experience, yat ye nature of ye seis other reasonis and examples we can not be. is mair relevant caus of thair procreatioun leif, that thir clakis are producit by ony than ony other thyng. And, howbeit, thir nature of treis, or rutes thairof, bot allenar. geis ar bred mony sundry wayis, thay are ly be the nature of the oceane sea, quhilk is bred ay allenarly be nature of the seis. For ye caus and production of mony wonderful all treis that ar cassin in the seis be process thingis. And becaus ye rude and ignorant of time apperis first worme etin, and in the pepyl saw oftymes ye frutis that fel of ye small boris and holis thairof growis small treis (quhilkis stood neir ye see), convertit
First, thay schaw thair heid and within schort tyme in geis, yai belevit that feit, and, last of all, thay schaw thair yir geis grew upon ye treis hingand be yair plumis and wyngis. Finally, quhen thay nebbis, siclik as appillis and ither fruitis ar cumin to the just mesure and quantite of hingis be yair stalkis, bot thair opinion is geis, thay fic in the aire, as ither fowlis nocht to be sustenit. For als sone as thir dois, as was notably provyn in the yeir of appilis or fruitis fallis of the tree in the see God, ane thousand iii hundred lxxxx, in flude, thay grow first worme etin, and, be sicht of mony pepyll besyde the Castle of short proces of time, ar all alterit in geis.” Petslego ane gret tree was brocht be allusion and flux of the see to land. This won. Such were the opinions entertained derful tree was brought to the lard of the regarding the origin of these birds, ground quhilk sone efter gart devyde it be which, for several centuries, passed as
currently as the most received axiom courts of justice, the dissecting rooms
a most curious and worthy nomena, be found mixed up in the texgentleman.". It was found to be the ture of a thousand characters, appaScoter, or black diver, a species dis- rently of the most opposite conformatinguished in the Linnean nomencla tion. Two men may, both in action ture by the name of Anas nigra, and and character, be essentially kindred still called macreuse by the French.* to each other, and yet neither of them
for a moment suspect the resemblance. Should men, like other departments of the kingdom of nature, be at any
time so fortunate as to find a Lin. CHRISTIAN WOLF,
næus, one who should classify them
according to tendencies and inclina. A True Story.-From the German.
tions, how would individuals stare at,
the result of his labours ? how, for exThe arts of the surgeon and the phy.. ample, should we be astonished to find sician derive their greatest improve- some quiet paltry shopkeeper arranged ments and discoveries from the beds under the same head with a Borgia, of the sick and the dying. Physiolo- just as we find the edible and the poigists draw their purest lights from sonous heads of Fungus classed tothe hospital and the madhouse. It gether in the manuals of Botany ? becomes the psycologist, the mora Nothing can be more useless, more list, the legislator, to follow the ex- absurd, than the manner in which ample, and to study with like real history is commonly written. Be dungeons and executions, above all tween the strong and excited passions
of the men of whom we read, and the
calm meditative state of mind in which * Some ornithologists have been of opi- we read of them, there exists little nion, that the macreuse is the same as the sympathy. The gulf between the puffin of the Scillies and Isle of Man; it historical subject' and the reader is so has also been referred both to the Colymbi wide, that things which ought to exand Mergi ; but these opinions are sufficiently refuted in Dr Robinson's observa cite in our breasts emotions
of a very tions, and in Mr Ray's letter, published in different character, are passed by with the 15th vol. of the Philosophical Transac
a far-off shudder of unconcern. We tions, pp. 1036 and 1041.
shake the head coldly when the heart VOL. III.