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Oh! joyous birds, it hath still been so ;
"A change we have found there--and many a change!
Sad is your tale of the beautiful earth,
MRS. HEMANS. (4) Hushed-silent, noiseless.—(5) Nought-nothing. Birds of Passage are those birds which migrate, that is, which leave our country at a certain season of the year for a warmer or a colder clime. The Swallow, Cuckoo, Nightingale, Redstart, Blackcap and many other birds leave us ere the winter commences, and guided by the instinct given them by their Creator, seek some other land where nature will smile upon them with her summer beauty ;-on the return of spring, say about April, they will visit old England again, and delight us with their pleasant music.
Again, there are birds which come to us in the winter time, leaving us again on the approach of spring, such as the Fieldfare, Redwing, Snipe, Wild-duck, Widgeon and many others which delight in the cold, frost and snow; and not like the former birds in sunny weather, green foliage, and blue skies.
THE BURIAL OF SIR JOHN MOORE.
Not a drum was heard, not a funeral note,
We buried him darkly, at dead of night,
No useless coffin enclosed his breast,
Few and short were the prayers we said,
We thought, as we hollowed his narrow bed,
Lightly they'll talk of the spirit that's gone,
In the grave where a Briton has laid him (1) Corse-corpse.—(2) Ramparts—the walls which surround fortified places.—(3) Sods—turfs, pieces of earth.-(4) Shrouddress of the dead.-(5) Martial-soldierly.—(6) Reck-care.
But half of our heavy task was done,
Slowly and sadly we laid him down,
WOLFE. (7) Random--that by chance, without aim.-(8) Foo-enemy. (9) Gory-bloody.
Sir John Moore, the subject of these universally admired verses, was killed at the battle of Corunna, an engagement between the French and English, when the losses of the latter were very considerable, consisting of 5000 horses, and 5 or 6000 men, besides its magazines, &c. The Historian says that however calamitous this expedition proved, yet it was of advantage to the cause it was intends to support, as it drew Buonaparte from the south, which at that time lay entirely open to his enterprises, and afforded time to the Spaniards to recover in some degree from the terrors of their enemy' The body of the brave Sir John Moore was hastily interred on the ramparts of Corunna, where a monument was afterwards raised to his memory.
Breathes there the man with soul so dead,
High tho' his titles, proud his name—
(2) Despite-in spite of.—(3) Pelf-money,-- possessions.
(4) Renown-fame, repute.
To be fond of the country we are born and live in, is not only natural but right. But in loving our own blessed land, we should never depreciate, or undervalue other countries, for God has given to all parts of the world suitable and distinct gifts.
“Ere the morning's busy ray
Call you to your work away,
And oh! where'er your days be past,
CRABBE. At all times, and under all circumstances, we can have access to God by prayer. Prayer is not only a duty, but a privilege, and we should never fail to pray to our Heavenly Father morning and evening. In prosperity or in adversity, the act of praying will purify our thoughts, enlarge our conceptions of the great God, better fit us for our daily labours, and prepare us for that blessed region where the souls of good men dwell.'
We are told that the effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much ;" we ought therefore never to forget our dear relatives and friends in our prayers.
How glorious is thy girdle cast
CAMPBELL. (1) Mirror'd-reflected. The cause of this beautiful phenomenon is to be found in the fact that the light of the sun is composed of three colours,-red, yellow and blue. In passing through the drops of rain, these colours are divided, and bent more or less from the usual straight direction of the sun's rays. The Rainbow was appointed by God as the sign of the covenant of mercy, made with Noah, and with all mankind after the flood.-see Genesis, 9 chap. v. 11 to 16.