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ness as a general would talk over a campaign; being pare, ticularly animated in relating the manner in which he had taken a large trout, which had completely tasked all his skill, and wariness, and which he had sent as a trophy to mine hostess of the inn.
How comforting it is. to see a cheerful and con. tented old age; and to behold a poor fellow, like this, after being tempest. tost through life, safely moored in a snug harbour, in the evening of his days! His happiness, however, sprung from within himself, and was independent of external circumstances; for he had that inexhaus, tible good-nature, which is the most precious gift of Heaven; spreading itself like oil over the troubled sea of thought, and keeping the mind smooth and equable in the roughest weather.
On enquiring further about him, I learned that he was a universal favourite in the village, and the oracle of the tap-room; where he delighted the rustics with his songs, and like Sindbad, astonished them with his stories of strange lands, and shipwrecks, and sça-fights. He was, much noticed too by gentlemen sportsmen of the neighbourhood; had taught several of them the art of anglings and was a privileged visitor to their kitchens, The whole tenor of his life was quiet and inoffensive, being principally passed about the neighbouring streams when the weather and season were favourable; and at other times he employed himself at home, prepariņg his fishing tackle for the next campaign, or manufacturing rods, nets, and flies for his patrons and pupils among the gentry.
He was a regular attendant at church on Sundays, though he generally fell asleep during the sermon. Не, had made it his particular request that when he died he should be buried on a green spot, which he could see from his seat in church, and which he had marked out ever since he was a boy, and had thought of when far from home on the rąging sea, in danger of being food for the fishes-it was the spot where his father and mother had been buried.
RURAL LIFE IN ENGLAND.
NOTHING can be more imposing than the magnificence of English park scenery.
Vast lawns that extend like sheets of vivid green, with here and there clumps of gigantic trees, heaping up rich piles of foliage. lemn pomp of groves and woodland glades, with the deer trooping in silent herds across them; the hare, bounding away to the covert; or the pheasant, suddenly bursting upon the wing. The brook, taught to wind in natural meanderings, or expand into a glassy lake-the sequestered pool, reflecting the quivering trees, with the yellow leaf sleeping on its bosom, and the trout roaming fearlessly about its limpid waters: while some rustic temple or sylvan statue, grown green and dank with age, gives an air of classic sanctity to the seclusion.
These are but a few of the features of park scenery; but what most delights me, is the creative talent with which the English decorate the unostentatious abodes of middle life. The rudest habitation, the most unpromising and scanty portion of land, in the hands of an Englishman of taste, becomes a little paradise. With a nicely discriminating eye, he seizes at once upon its capabilities, and pictures in his mind the future landscape. The sterile spot grows into loveliness under his hand; and yet the operations of art which produce the effect are scarcely to be perceived. The cherishing and training of some trees; the cautious pruning of others; the nice distribution of flowers and plants of tender and graceful foliage; the introduction of a green slope of velvet turf; the partial opening to a peep of blue distance, or silver gleam of water; all these are managed with a delicate tact, a pervading yet quiet assiduity, like the magic touchings with which a painter finishes up a favourite picture.
The residence of people of fortune and refinement in the country has diffused a degree of taste and elegance in rural economy, that descends to the lowest class. The very labourer, with his thatched cottage and narrow slip of ground, attends to their embellishment.
hedge, the grass-plot before the door, the little flower-bed bordered with snug box, the woodbine trained up against the wall, and hanging its blossoms about the lattice, the pot of flowers in the window, the holly providently planted about the house, to cheat winter of its dreariness, and to throw in a semblance of green summer to cheer the fire-side: all these bespeak the influence of taste, flowing down from high sources, and pervading the lowest levels of the public mind. If ever Love, as poets sing, delights to visit a cottage, it must be the cottage of an English peasant.
The fondness for rural life among the higher classes of the English has had a great and salutary effect upon the national character. I do not know a finer race of men than the English gentlemen. Instead of the softness and effeminacy which characterize the man of rank in most countries, they exhibit a union of elegance and strength, a robustness of frame and freshness of complexion, which I am inclined to attribute to their living so much in the open air, and pursuing so eagerly the invigorating recreations of the country. These hardy exercises produce also a healthful tone of mind and spirits, and a manliness and simplicity of manners, which even the follies and dissipations of the town cannot easily pervert, and can never entirely destroy. In the country, too, the different orders of society seem to approach more freely, to be more disposed to blend and operate favourably upon each other. . The distinctions between them do not appear to be so marked and impassable, as in the cities. The manner in which property has been distributed into small estates and farms, has established a regular gradation from the nobleman, through the classes of gentry, small landed proprietors, and substantial farmers, down to the labouring peasantry; and while it has thus banded the extremes of society together, has infused into each intermediate rank a spirit of independence. This, it must be confessed, is not so universally the case at present as it was formerly; the larger estates having, in late years of distress, absorbed the smaller, and, in some parts of the country, almost annihilated the sturdy race of small far
These, however, I believe, are but casual breaks in the general system I have mentioned.
In rural'occupation there is nothing mean and debas. ing. It leads a man forth among scenes of natural grandeur and beauty; it leaves him to the workings of his own mind, operated upon by the purest and most elevating of external influences. Such a man may be simple and rough, but he cannot be vulgar. The man of refinement, therefore, finds nothing revolting in an intercourse with the lower orders of moral life, as he does when he casually mingles with the lower of cities. He lays aside his distance and reserve, and is glad to wave the distinctions of rank, and to enter into the honest, heartfelt enjoyments of common life. Indeed the very, amusements of the country bring men more and more together; and the sound of hound and horn blend all feelings into harmony. I believe this is one great reason why the nobility, and gentry are more popular among the inferior orders in England than they are in any other contry; and why the latter have endured so many excessive pressures and extremities, without repining more generally at the unequal distribution of fortune and privilege.
To this mingling of cultivated and rustic society may also be attributed the rural feeling that runs through British literature; the frequent use of illustrations from rural life; those incomparable descriptions of nature that abound in the British poets—that have continued down from the flower and the Leaf" of Chaucer, and have brought into our closets all the freshness and fragrance of the dewy landscape. The pastoral writers of other, countries appear as if they had paid nature an occasional visit, and become acquainted with her general charms; but the British poets have lived and revelled with her, -they have woed her in her most secret haunts.--they have watched her minutest caprices.
A spray could not tremble in the breeze-a leaf could not rustle to the groupd -a diamond drop could not patter in the stream--a far. grance could not exhale from the humble violet, nor a daisy unfold its crimson tints to the morning; but it has been noticed by these impassioned and delicate observers, and wrought up into some beautiful morality.
FROM MUSTAPHA RUB-A-DUB KELI KHAN,
To Mully Helim al Raggi, surnamed the agreeable Ragamuffin, chief mountebank and buffo-dancer to his Highness.
The numerous letters which I have written to our friend the slave-driver, as well as those to thy kinsman the snorer, and which doubtless were read to thee, honest Muley, have in all probability, awakened thy curiosity to know further particulars concerning the manners of the barbarians, who hold me in such ignominious captivity. I was lately at one of their public ceremonies, which, at first, perplexed me exceedingly as to its object; but as the explanations of a friend have let me somewhat into the secret, and as it seems to bear no small analogy to thy profession, a description of it may contribute to thy amusement, if not to thy instruction.
A few days since, just as I had finished my coffee, and was perfuming my whiskers preparatory to a morning walk, I was waited upon by an inhabitant of this place, a gay young infidel, who has of late cultivated my acquaintance. He presented me with a square bit of painted pasteboard, which, he informed me, would entitle me to admittance to the city assembly. Curious to know the meaning of a phrase which was entirely new to me, I requested an explanation; when my friend informed me that the assembly was a numerous' concourse of young people of both sexes, who, on certain occasions, gathered together to dance about a large room with violent gesticulation, and try to out-dress each other. "In short,” said he, “ If you wish to see the natives in all their glory, there's no place like the city assembly; so you must go there and sport your whiskers.”
Though the matter of sporting my whiskers was considerably above my apprehension, yet I now began, as I thought, to understand him. I