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changing their skins, they are barbarously devoured by swallows and other birds. Escaped this peril, when they approach for a second time the surface of the water to sport and play, they are again likely to fall a prey to fish, which drag them to the dark bottom and devour them. Thus though most innocent, no wild beasts can be pursued with greater cruelty.'
“ The conscience of the fly-fisher,” adds the interesting author of “ Episodes of Insect Life," from whom the above little narrative is borrowed, “ will suggest another misery more acute, perhaps, and prolonged than either of the above, added by his own hands to the catalogue of the poor may-fly's sad calamities."
As roses and all sweet flowers abound at this season, so also are butterflies abundant.
TO A BUTTERFLY.
Stay near me—do not take thy flight !
“ Thoughts on butterflies," says the graceful autho: of “ Episodes of Insect Life," “ always bring with them thoughts on flowers.” Under this more combined aspect, they are both so doubly pleasant to look upon, that we must trace here a few of their corresponding features.
“Flowers seem, as it were, to impart a portion of their
own characteristics to all things that frequent them. This is peculiarly exemplified in the butterfly, which must be regarded, par excellence, as the insect of flowers, and a flower-like insect, gay and innocent, made after a floral pattern, and coloured after floral hues. But even with the insect families, which are usually dark and repulsive, that, for instance, of cock-roaches, which are for the most part black or brown; the few species which resort to flowers are gaily coloured. What a contrast also between the dark, loathsome, in-door spider, and their prettily-painted, green and red, and white and yellow brethren of the field and garden, which seek their prey among the flowers; while, more striking still, is the difference between the wingless, disgusting plague of cities, and the elegantly formed, brightly coloured, winged bugs, which are common frequenters of the parterre. Whether this be imputed to the effect of light, or assigned poetically to the breathing influence of a flowery atmosphere, and the tendency of all things to produce their similitudes, there lies beneath the natural fact a noral analogy of application to ourselves.
Let us quote to this effect, from the herbal of a quaint old writer, Gérarde, on the influence of flowers: “Through 1 eir beauty and variety of colour and exquisite form, they do bring to a liberal and gentle mind the remembrance of honesty, comeliness, and all kinds of virtues; for it would be an unseemly thing (as a certain wise man saith) for him that doth look upon and handle fair and beautiful things, and who frequenteth and is conversant in fair and beautiful places, to have his mind not fair also.” However few may thus read their moral, and open
their hearts for the reception of its sweetness, we might almost pny that all but life-haters love flowers; and for the same reasons, nearly all, though haters of insects in general, love butterflies. We almost, indeed, seem to look upon
them as animated members of the floral kingdom, and regard them much in like manner according to the progressive st: fes of our lives. In childhood we long for and pursue them ; in youth we poetise them; in manhood scarcely heed them; in age begin to find in them, perhaps, alas ! for the first time, sermons of warning and emblems of hope. The following, with other beautiful lines from an American poet, were written upon flowers, but with the substitution of only a single word, do they not apply precisely unto butterflies, which, like them, are wont to
Expand their light and soul-like wings,
How akin they are to human things.
We behold those tender wings expand,
Emblems of the bright and better land.
But it is not a mere poetic, much less a fanciful, analogy which links the butterfly by a thousand golden chains with the loveliest productions of the vegetable world. The leaf and the caterpillar, the flower and the butterfly, seem, as it has been said, made for each other; though we must certainly admit that the plant would, to all appearance, do much better without the insect, than the insect without the plant, which furnishes the caterpillar with sustenance, and the butterfly with a velvet cushion for repose, or a nectared cup
for refreshment. Independently of this bond of use (more mutual perhaps than we are at present able to discern), there has been traced by naturalists an intimate analogy of states and developments between the lepidopterous insect and the perfect vegetable. The caterpillar, disclosed from the
egg, encases in its various skins the gradually expanding form of the future butterfly; as the plant, burst from the seed or bulb, encloses in its successive integuments of root, stalk, and floral leaves, the flower and fruit in process of formation. The chrysalis, that shroud or cover, which at once protects and imprisons the winged creature it encloses, finds its correspondence in the defensive calyx which enwraps the delicate corolla. Both burst from their envelopes in perfect form—the insect to die, the flower to fade, soon after having provided for the continuance of their kind.
In the habits, no less than in the structure of the butter. fly and the flower, there is observable no slight degree of correspondence. In the gloom of night or of cloudy weather, the insect folds its wings, the flower its wing-like petals; and as flowers love to turn towards the sun, so
ANALOGY BETWEEN BUTTERFLIES AND FLOWERS.
their pinions to receive his welcome rays; sometimes alternately closing them in fan-like motion, to temper probably his too ardent beams. Sometimes, with the devoted worship of the sun-flower, a butterfly will follow the God of Day in his ascension and decline.
Our purple emperor mounts from his leafy throne, the top of an oak or elm tree, to a height invisible, and highest under a noonday sun; then redescending, lowers his flight with the setting luminary.
As the blowing of flowers can be forced or retarded by artificial heat or cold, so it has been found with the emergement of butterflies, Réaumur made many successful experiments by aid of hot-houses, and hens upon various chrysalises, from which he caused the premature evolvement of the perfect insect, and proposed the employment of the same means on a large scale, to cause summer flowers and summer flutterers to appear together in the midst of winter.
Darwin had a pretty fancy, that butterflies usually resemble the flowers they are most accustomed to frequent; and whether this is true or not as a general rule, there is a very large proportion of white and yellow flowers, which are visited perhaps most frequently by an equally large proportion of white and yellowish butterflies. The greater number of blue butterflies are certainly accustomed to frequent the blue flowers most abounding in chalky soils; and the rich tone of colouring in our autumn flowers harmonises well with that of autumn butterflies. But whether they be or be not dyed usually after the colours of their favourite blossoms, it seems agreed on all hands, that the butterfly form and its fluttering habiliments are always fashioned after the floral pattern, as it prevails in the papilionaceous families of the vegetable world.
This also appears a striking fact as regards the colouring of the butterfly, that it is governed by the same laws which regulate the colour of the flowers in their respective seasons. In spring soft and tender, of a delicate hue, giving the idea of youthfulness and grace; in summer acquiring more variety and depth of colour, like the flowers of the summer field and garden; and in autumn presenting intensity and richness, in wonderful accordance with the oranges, deep purples, crimsons, and rich blues of the autumnal flowers."
“There can be no doubt whatever,” says Mr. Soane, in his instructive work, the " Book of the Months," to which we have already been much indebted,“ that the English name of this month is derived from the Latin Junius, though in regard to the etymology of the latter the opinions of the classic writers are exceedingly various and contradictory. Macrobius tells us that it was so named either from Juniores, the younger part of the Romans, to whom Romulus assigned the defence of the city, or from the old word Junonius; or from Junius Brutus, because in this month Tarquinius being driven from the city, he in pursuance of his vow dedicated a temple upon Mount Cælius to Carna, the Goddess of the Hinge (Cardinis), who, according to Ovid, by her power opens or shuts all things.
“Amongst our Saxon ancestors this month had various names, and all of them much more appropriate than the one we have borrowed, and retained, from the Romans. It was called