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day-time; and the land breezes, on the contrary, in the night.

From what has been observed, nothing is more easy than to see, why the northern and southern parts of the world, beyond the limits of the trade winds, are subject to such variety of winds. For the air, on account of the smaller influence of the sun in those parts, being undetermined to move toward any fixed point, is continually shifting from place to place, in order to restore the equilibrium, wherever it is destroyed; whether by the heat of the sun; the rising of vapours, or exhalations; the falling of great quantities of rain, or the melting of the snow upon the mountains, either of which causes a sudden condensation or compression of the air; or by high mountains, which alter the direction of the winds. For to these, not to mention other circumstances, we may trace the origin of all those storms, hurricanes, whirlwinds, and irregularities, which happen at different times and places'.

From this account of the nature and causes of the winds, it is natural to advert to their various uses in the material world. And, here, the superficial observer may inquire, how it happens, that, with such evident marks of wisdom and contrivance in the objects we have hitherto surveyed, a Being infinitely good, as well as wise and powerful, could permit such a variety of evils as are produced by storms and tempests; by which whole countries have been ravaged, and thousands, in every age, overwhelmed in the ocean. To this it may be

This account of the winds corresponds, in the main, with the theory of Dr. Halley. Another hypothesis has been advanced by Mr. Dalton, in his Meteorological Essays; but it does not appear to us preferable to the one here adopted.

observed, that nothing is properly an evil, which it is consistent with the perfections of the Deity to permit or appoint, but what deserves that character upon the whole. This we can never presume to say, of any thing we are acquainted with, nor, indeed, of any natural evils that are of a limited duration. It is more becoming to suppose, that they may have a tendency to promote the more solid and permanent happiness of individuals (after several intermediate consequences, which we are too shortsighted to trace) as well as the general good of the creation. Nor can we demonstrate, or even argue the contrary, with any probability, unless we can likewise comprehend all the infinite variety of de signs, that an all-wise Being may intend to effect, by particular occurrences, and thoroughly understand the whole plan of his government, the connection of the several parts of it, and their reference and subordination to each other.

"Tis but a part we see, and not a whole. POPE. It must, at least, be unquestionable, that what seems wrong in the present state, may be amply rectified in some future scene of existence, and the present evil infinitely overbalanced by the succeeding good.


It may further be observed, with the poetical philosopher just quoted, that all partial evil is universal good.' Of what we call natural evils, many are most admirably adapted to the preservation and welfare of the creation.

In thy world material, mighty mind!
Not that alone which solaces and shines,
The rough and gloomy, challenges our praise,
The winter is as needful as the spring;
The thunder as the sun: a stagnant mass
Of vapours breeds a pestilential air:
Not more propitious the Favonian breeze

In a word, the more attentively we consider this subject, the Contemplative Philosopher cannot but learn this important truth, that, from the natural evils incident to the present frame and constitution of things, the Divine Being either is constantly educing good, or will, finally, render them subser vient, on the whole, to the happiness of his creatures. Nor can a benevolent mind derive a nobler consolation in calamity, than from the consideration, that the immediate cause of his sufferings may, perhaps, in the providential course of events, be conformable to some gracious intention in that Being, who is the inexhaustible fountain of good to all his creatures; and that not only the winds, in general, are productive of various benefits to mankind, but that the very storm, which perhaps ravaged his lands, or plunged some loved relative in the deep, was necessary to ventilate the skies, to agitate the ocean into wholesome rage, and to sweep from the earth those noxious vapours, which, if permitted to be at rest, would be productive of all the fatal effects of infection and disease. And with respect to himself, as an individual, he will rejoice in the reflection, that after a few years more, spent in the aspiring hopes of faith and piety', the benevolent exertions of virtue and goodness, and the patient exercise of fortitude and resignation, all the momentary evils of this life will be succeeded by unfading peace and everlasting joy:

The storms of wintry life will quickly pass,
And one unbounded spring encircle all. THOMSON

Hope humbly then; with trembling pinions soar;
Wait the great teacher Death; and God adore.


No. III.


Why hover snows, and wanton in the air,
Fall by degrees, and clothe the hoary year?


He gives the winter's snow her airy birth,
And bids her virgin fleeces clothe the earth.


AMONG the various phenomena of winter, not one is more worthy of discussion than that of snow, which is, confessedly, one of the most curious productions of Nature, and, in the remotest ages of antiquity, has excited the admiration of the poets and philosophers, whether sacred or profane. The author of the book of Job, in the discourse which he puts into the mouth of Elihu, concerning the glorious and incomprehensible works of the Deity, thus expresses himself:God thundereth marvellously with his voice: great things doeth he, which we cannot comprehend; for he saith to the snow, Be thou on the earth-And he represents the omnipotent Jehovah, in his sublime expostulation with the patriarch, thus demanding: Hast thou entered into the treasures of the snow, or hast thou seen the treasures of the hail, which I have reserved against the time of trouble, against the day of battle and war?"— He giveth, says the Psalmist, snow like wool: he scattereth the hoar-frost like ashes. He casteth forth his ice like morsels: who can stand against his cold?'At his commandment,' says the wise son of Sirach,



he maketh the snow to fall apace-As birds flying he scattereth the snow, and the falling down thereof is as the lightning

velleth at the beauty of the whiteness thereof, and the heart is astonished at the raining of it.'

Homer, the venerable sire of bards, has described a shower of snow, and its extensive effects, in a noble strain of poetry:

In Winter's bleak uncomfortable reign,
A snowy inundation hides the plain;
Jove stills the winds, and bids the skies to sleep;
Then pours the silent tempest thick and deep:
And first the mountain tops are covered o'er,
Then the green fields, and then the sandy shore;
Bent with the weight the nodding woods are seen,
And one bright waste hides all the works of men:
The eircling seas alone, absorbing all,
Drink the dissolving fleeces as they fall.



Aristotle's definition of snow and hail is concise and just: Snow is a cloud congealed, and hail congealed water.' Pliny calls snow the foam of celestial waters when they dash against one another.' This is very ingeniously expressed for a poet, but it is not the definition of a philosopher. Lucretius enumerates snow among a variety of phenomena, the causes of which, he says, it is easy to investigate. He is content, however, to leave the subject to the sagacity and researches of his readers: Cætera, quæ sursùm crescunt, sursùmque creantur: Et quæ concrescant in nubibus on nia, prorsùm Omnia, nix, venti, grando, gelidæque pruinæ, Et vis magnus geli, magnum duramer aquarum; Et mora, quæ fluvios passim refrenit eunteis; Per facile'st tamen hæc reperire, animoque videro Omnia quo pacto fiant, quareve creantur, Cum bene cognôris, elementis reddita quæ sint.

Meteors, that high ascend the aerial way,
Or float in clouds, and various forms display;
The snow that whitens over all the ground;
The winds that wide spread desolation round;
The rattling hail; and beauteous-fancied frost,
With hoary charms on every plant embost;
The ice, whose mighty force pervades the woods,
Binds deep the earth, and stops the rapid floods;

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