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and roses and ribbons streaming in the wind, and a noiseless weathercock on top, to tell the village whence the wind cometh and whither it goeth. The sun does not set till ten o'clock at night; and the children are at play in the streets an hour later. The windows and doors are all open, and you may sit and read till midnight without a candle. O how beautiful is the sum
O mer night, which is not night, but a sunless yet unclouded day, descending upon earth with dews, and shadows, and refreshing coolness!
How beautiful the long, mild twilight, which like a silver clasp unites to-day with yesterday! How beautiful the silent hour, when Morning and Evening thus sit together, hand in hand, beneath the starless sky of midnight! From the church-tower in the public square the bell tolls the hour, with a soft, musical chime; and the watchman, whose watch-tower is the belfry, blows a blast on his horn, for each stroke of the hammer, four times, to the four corners of the heavens :
Ho! watchman, ho!
Twelve is the clock! From his swallow's nest in the belfry he can see the sun all night long; and farther north the priest stands at his door in the warm midnight, and lights his pipe with a common burning glass.
“The sea is his, and He made it.” Its beauty is of God. It possesses it, in richness, of its own; it borrows it from earth, and air, and heaven. The clouds lend it the various dyes of their wardrobe, and throw down upon it the broad masses of their shadows, as they go sailing and sweeping by. The rainbow laves in it its many colored feet. The sun loves to visit it, and the moon, and the glittering brotherhood of planets and stars; for they delight themselves in its beauty.
The sunbeams return from it in showers of diamonds and glances of fire; the moonbeams find in it a pathway of silver, where they dance to and fro, with the breeze and the waves, through the livelong night. It has a light, too, of its own, a soft and sparkling light, rivaling the stars; and often does the ship which cuts its surface, leave streaming behind a milky way of dim and uncertain lustre, like that which is shining dimly above.
It harmonizes in its forms and sounds both with the night and the day. It cheerfully reflects the light, and it unites solemnly with the darkness.
It imparts sweetness to the music of men, and grandeur to the thunder of heaven. What landscape is so beautiful as one upon the borders of the sea? The spirit of its loveliness is from the waters, where it dwells and rests, singing its spells, and scattering its charms on all the coast. What rocks and cliffs are so glorious as those
which are washed by the chafing sea? What groves, and fields, and dwellings are so enchanting as those which stand by the reflecting sea.
If we could see the great ocean as it can be seen by no mortal eye, beholding at one view what we are now obliged to visit in detail and spot by spot; if wę could, from a flight far higher than the sea eagle's, and with a sight more keen and comprehensive than his, view the immense surface of the deep all spread out beneath us like a universal chart, what an infinite variety such a scene would display! Here a storm would be raging, the thunder bursting, the waters boiling, and rain and foam and fire all mingling together ; and here next to this scene of magnificent confusion, we should see the bright blue waves glittering in the sun, and while the brisk breezes flew over them, clapping their hands for very gladness.
Here, again, on this self-same ocean, we should behold large tracts where there was neither tempest nor breeze, but a dead calm, breathless, noiseless, and, were it not for that swell of the sea which never rests, motionless. Here we should see a cluster of green islands, set like jewels, in the midst of its bosom; and there we should see broad shoals and gray rocks, fretting the billows, and threatening the mariner.
“There go the ships," the white robed ships, some on this course, and others on the opposite one, some just approaching the shore, and some just leaving it; some in fleets, and others in solitude; some swinging lazır, in a calm, and some driven and tossed, and perhaps overwhelmed by the storm; some for traffic, and
some for state, and some in peace, and others, alas!
Let us follow one, and we should see it propelled by the steady wind of the tropics, and inhaling the almost visible odors which diffuse themselves around the spice islands of the East; let us observe the track of another, and we should behold it piercing the cold barriers of the North, struggling among hills and fields of ice, contending with Winter in his everlasting dominion, striving to touch that unattained, solemn, hermit point of the globe, where ships may perhaps never visit, and where the foot of man, all-daring and indefatigable as it is, may never tread.
Nor are the ships of man the only travelers whom we shall perceive on this mighty map of the ocean. Flocks of sea birds are passing and repassing, diving for their food, or for pastime, migrating from shore to shore with unwearied wings and undeviating instinct, or wheeling and swarming round the rocks which they make alive and vocal by their numbers and their clanging cries.
How various, how animated, how full of interest is the survey! We might behold such a scene, were we enabled to behold it, at almost any moment of time on the vast and varied ocean; and it would be a much more diversified and beautiful one; for I have spoken but of a few particulars, and of those but slightly.
I have not spoken of the thousand forms in which the sea meets the shore, of the sands and the cliffs, of the arches and grottos, of the cities and the solitudes, which occur in the beautiful irregularity of its outline; nor of the constant tides, nor the boiling whirlpools and eddies, nor the currents and streams, which are dispersed throughout its surface. The variety of the sea, notwithstanding the uniformity of its substance, is ever changing and endless..
“ The sea is his, and He made it.” And when He made it, He ordained that it should be the element and dwelling place of multitudes of living beings, and the treasury of many riches. How populous and wealthy and bounteous are the depths of the sea! How many are the tribes which find in them abundant sustenance, and furnish abundant sustenance to man. The whale roams through the deep like its lord; but he is forced to surrender his vast bulk to the use of man.
The lesser tribes of the finny race have each their peculiar habits and haunts, but they are found out by the ingenuity of man, and turned to his own purposes. The line and the hook and the net are dropped and spread to delude them, and bring them up from the watery chambers where they were roving in conscious security. How strange is it that the warm food which comes upon our tables, and substances which furnish our streets and dwellings with cheerful light, should be drawn up from the cold and dark recesses of the
We shall behold new wonders and riches when we investigate the sea shore. We shall find both beauty for the eye and food for the body, in the varieties of shell fish, which adhere in myriads to the rocks, or form their close dark burrows in the sands. In some parts of the world we shall see those houses of stone, which the little coral insect rears up with patient