« ΠροηγούμενηΣυνέχεια »
tale of earthly grandeur, and the nothingness of life. Those who on earth ward with each other, now slept in repose, side by side. I could not help feeling the power of that great leveler, Death, upon contemplating the graves of Pitt and Fox. Their ashes slept quietly in close proximity, unconscious of jarring elements of party strife, of triumph and defeat, and I turned from the sight of their last cold bed, if not a better, at least, a more reflective being.
In this mood I ascended to a small chapel immediately behind the chancel, and there beheld the sword, helmet and shield of Edward, the Black Prince, and the curiously carved oak chair, in which the sovereigns of England are crowned. Beneath the seat the famous stone, brought from Scone, in Scotland, which, according to tradition, was once the pillow on which the patriarch Jacob rested his head, when in a vision he saw angels ascending and descending on a ladder that reached from earth to Heaven.
But that which interested me still more, was the architectural splendor of Henry the Seventh's chapel. On reaching the east end of the Abbey, I ascended a flight of black, marble steps, beneath a deep, dark, and low gothic arch, to gates of bronze, exquisitely wrought in the most florid gothic ornaments, through which I beheld the main body of the chapel. A thin, bluish haze floated within its hal. lowed walls, adding an indescribable charm to the subdued and partially admitted light of day, as it streamed through the elaborately stained glass windows of this magnificent temple. A solemn stillness reigned throughout the whole buildingan awe-inspiring—a commanding silence, which impressed me with feelings wbich I never before experienced. I gazed in silent admiration at this superb fabric. Its clustered columns supporting a roof of the most exquisite tracery, from which descended elaborately wrought pendants, like colossal stalactites, gave it an air of enchantment far beyond the powers of description. The whole interior of this chapel is of cut stone, without any coating of cement or plaster, and so finely finished its minutest details, that the visiter is at a loss which most to admire-the genius which planned, or the skill which executed it. So apparently light and airy does the whole seem to the spectator, that you fancy yourself realizing the fairy creations of some eastern story-teller, rather than looking upon a substantial building of stone and mortar.
In the east end is the highly finished and minutely wrought bronze altar tomb of its founder, having his own effigy, and that of his queen, reposing on it,1 curiously and beautifully executed. The whole tömb is surrounded with a screen of gothic tracery in the same material.
These gates are what is termed open work, which allows the visiter to see the inierior before he enters.
" The architecture of the tomb has a mixture of Roman arches and decoration, very different from the arches of the chapel, which are all pointed ; the figures of the tomb have a better proportion and drawing, in the naked, than those of the chapel; but the figures of the chapel are very superior in natural simplicity and grandeur of character and drapery."-[Flaxman's Lectures on Sculpture, page 24, London, 1829. The sculptor of this monument was Torrigiano.
In one of the side aisles is the marble effigy of Queen Elizabeth, and in the other that of her beautiful but unfortunate victim, Mary of Scots.
Who can look upon the tombs of these sister Queens, without thinking of the beauty, accomplishments, and loveliness of poor Mary-without giving utterance to a deep felt sigh for her miseries and tragic death, or, not feel respect for the talents, admiration for the greatness, and pity and contempt for the vanity, selfishness and cruelty of her oppressor, Elizabeth. A few brief years rolled on in the trackless course, and the oppressor followed the oppressed to the last resting place of mortality. They are now at peace. Let charity throw the cold chain of silence o'er their memories, and blot out the faults of the one and the foibles of the other, for their glittering crowns could not save them from the frailties of the human race.
In the east end of the left aisle, is a monument to the infants who were murdered in the tower by order of Richard the Third, and, if I mistake not, their bodies rest beneath.
In contemplating this noble triumph of gothic architecture, the beholder is impressed with a sense of self-annihilation, and a degree of deep reverence waits upon his footsteps as he moves along its tesselated pavement. He is lost in amazement at the immensity of skill and ingenuity which he sees around him. It becomes engraven on his memory, nor time, nor space can blot it out, for, to remember it forever, he has to stand but once beneath its lofty vault.
There is no style of architecture so befitting a house dedicated to the solemn worship of Almighty God, as the gothic, for it admits of a variety of ornaments, nnd when of an appropriate character, cannot fail of producing the happiest effect on our devotional feelings. But of all ornaments, the most appropriate is the great symbol of our faith. This was adopted by the early christians simply to distinguish them from the surrounding heathen, who despised the christian religion because of the sufferings and ignominious death of our Saviour. In order to show how little such contumelies and coutempt prevailed with them, the Fathers adopted the sign of the cross in preference to all others, as an outward mark, whereby they could more easily be distinguished. It is, therefore, says the author of Anglican Church Architecture. “ of all decorations the most appropriate that can be introduced in ecclesiastical architecture, and like a guardian crest,' ought to be placed on the summit of every structure that is dedtcated to the solemn services of the church.
“And we will not conceal the precious cross
Creep round its arms through centuries unborn.”
cumstance full of meaning, that no man knows the names of the architects of our cathedrals. They left no record of their names upon the fabrics, as if they would have nothing there that would suggest any other idea than the glory of that God, to whom the edifices were devoted for perpetual and solemn worship; nothing to mingle a meaner association with the profound sense of His presence; or, as if at the joy of having built Him a house, there was no want lest unfulfilled-00 room for the question whether it is good for man to live in posthumous renown.”
Who can read the glowing works of the immortal bard of Abbotsford, without realizing the balls and castles of the feudal chieftains of the middle ages? Whose pen can describe the rich tracery of the gothic so well as Scott, or whose truthfulness lead you to a view of the solemn grandeur of churches, the sombre gloom of monasteries, or the massive strength of donjons dark and deep, than this Wizard of the North? All the poetry and romance of former times impreg. nate the atmosphere which surrounds the graphic delineations of his pen. We become actually familiar with the imposing stateliness of civil architecture—we revel in the halls of princes, and are subdued by the softened light of mid-day, as it streams in many colors through the stained glass windows upon the marble pavement of a cathedral.
This noble art lends itself to our comforts, our protection, our elegances and luxuries, and to our devotions when bowed in humble supplication before the throne of the Supreme, Grand Architect of the Universe, surrounding us with an atmosphere of reverence which should ever accompany the building dedicated to the solemn worship of the Most High.
Like its sisters, it indeed ranks the nations where it is cultivated high in the scale of civilization, and is truly a good criterion by which to judge of the refinement of a people; but with all its vast powers, its grandeur and magnificence, it must obey the immutable law, and sooner or later sink to decay.
« The cloud cap'd towers, the gorgeous palaces,
Leave not a wreck behind.”
CANNABIS. Class and Order, diæcia pentandria, Nat. Ord. Scabridæ, Linn. Urticæ, Jus.
Gen. Ch. Male. Cal. perianth five cleft; segment oblong, accuminately obtuse, concave. Cor. none. Stam. filaments five, capillary, very short; anthers oblong, four-cornered. Female. Cal. perianth one-leafed, oblong, acuminate, opening longitudinally on one side, permanent. Cor. none. Pist. germ very small; styles two, very long; stigmas acute. Peric, the permanent calyx closely covering the seed. Seed not globular, depressed, two-valved.
Ess. Ch. Male. Calyx five cleft; Corolla none. Female. calyx one-leafed, entire, opening on one side; corolla none; styles two; nut two-valved, within the closed calyx.
Sp. 1 Cannabis Sativa. Linn. HEMP. (Ger. Hanf; Du. Hennip, Kennip; Da. Hamp. ; Sw. Hampa ; Fr. Chanvre; st. Canape; Sp. Canamo ; Rus. Canapli, Kanopel ; Pol. Konope,) Leaves opposite. Root annual. Stem upright, obscurely quadrangular, a little hairy. Leaves petioled, digitate; leaflets five or seven, lanceolate, accuminate, serrated, outer ones the smallest. Male flowers in small loose racemes, or spikes at the ends of the stems and branches. Female Nowers, axilliary, solitary, very small. Both kinds sometimes occur on the same plant, but always one of them very few in proportion to the other.
The history of hemp, like that of most of the cultivated plants of the old world, is obscure.
It is said by Herodotus, to be a native of Scythia. According to Linnæus, it grows wild in the East Indies. Thunberg says it grows in Japan. Gmelin found it in Tartary, and it is stated in Rees' Cyclopædia, that Father Hennepin found it among the Illinois of North America; while others have supposed hemp to be a native of Persia. Were these accounts all true, they would give to hemp a wider range of climate than that of almost any other plant. But we conclude, that in these and other historical facts in relation to hemp, the Cannabis Sativa has been confounded with the Cannabis Indica, the Dakka or Bangua of the Indians. This is a plant with a taller stem; leaves alternate ; stem nearly cylindrical, smaller, more branched, and harder than that of the preceding species. Leaflets linear-lanceolate, very sharp pointed; in the male plant five or seven, in the female commonly but three, on a petiole ; near the top entirely simple; a native of the East Indies. Its hard stem and thin bark render it incapable of being wrought into filaments and spun, like common hemp. It has a strong smell, a little like that of tobacco. The Indians make of its bark, and the expressed juice of the leaves and seeds, a liquor which has an intoxicating quality; and, if they wish to produce a stronger effect, they either chew or smoke the dried leaves, mingled with tobacco.
A little nutmeg, cloves, camphor, and opium, mixed with its juice, on the composition which the Indians call majeh, and which, according to Clusius, is the same as the malach of the Turks.* Milburn, in his Oriental Commerce, says:
Hemp has been cultivated in Bengal, from the remotest antiquity; but not as in Europe, for the purpose of being manufactured into cloth and cordage. In the Hindoo economy, it serves as a substitute for malt; a favorite intoxicating liquor called Banga, being produced from it. This, also, is the use to which it is applied in Egypt.” Here the term “HEMP” is used, without taking notice of the species; but it is conclusive, from what we have said
Rees' Cyclopaedia, title Cannabis.
before, that the hemp spoken of by Milburn is the Cannabis Indica or Bangua.
• It does not appear that the ancients were acquainted with the use of hemp, in respect to the thread it affords. Pliny, who speaks of that plant in his Natural History, lib. xx, chap. 23, says not a word of this; contenting himself with extolling the virtues of its stem, leaves, and root. In eflect, what some writers of the Roman antiquities remark, viz: that the hemp necessary for the use of war, 'was all stored up in two cities of the western empire, viz: at Ravenna an Vienne, under the direction of two procurators, called procuratores linificii, must be understood of linum or flax."
From comparing these accounts, we conclude that the Cannabis Satira, the hemp of commerce, was unknown to the ancients; or, if the plant was known, it was used in Europe and Asia Minor, for the same purposes as was the Cannabis Indica in the East Indies. Nor have we any certain account that it has been produced in the East Indies, even to the present day, for any purpose what
And hence we conclude that it is a native of, perhaps, the more northern parts of the temperate zone.
The article of commerce known as Indian or Sunn hemp, is the fibre of the Crotolaria junca, a small plant, with a stem about three feet high, and, in some respects, resembles the rush. “It is grown in various parts of Hindostan. The strongest, whitest, and most durable species at Comercolly. During those periods of the late war, when the intercourse with the Baltic was interrupted, and hemp bore an enormous price, large quantities of Sunn were imported into England; but, the fibre being comparatively weak, the article was not found to answer, and the importation has since been discontinued.' "* In the report of the Secretary of the Treasury, he places Manilla and Sunn hemp, jute, Sisal grass, coir, &c., under one head; and hence we have no means at hand, of ascertaining to what extent the article is used in this country.
MANILLA HEMP is made of the fibrous bark or epidermis of the wild banana, (musa textilis,) a species which grows in great abundance in some of the most northerly of the Spice Islands. In the great Island Mindanao, one of the Phil. ippines, said to fill extensive forests.
Coir is the fibre from the husks of the cocoa nut, separated by steeping it in water, spun into yarn, and manufactured into cordage; this is esteemed as one of the strongest of all the vegetable fibres, and constitutes an important article of commerce. According to McCulloch, Ceylon alone exporis annually 3,000,000 lbs. of coir; a large quantity is also exported from the Maldive Islands.
Russia produces about as much hemp as the balance of the world. We have met with no statistics showing the entire amount of production in that country; but, in a published letter from the Hon. C. S. Morehead, a member of Congress from Kentucky, he says: “The entire product of hemp in Russia, bas been differently estimated. Perhaps that which places it at two hundred and forty millions
Milburn's Oriental Commerce.