« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »
POUSSIN AND HIS WORKS.
and he also frequented schools for studying from the
living model. II.
At this period the fame of Guido was at its height.
Most of the pupils, seduced by the intellectual style and Poussin was in his thirtieth year when he first visited easy and agreeable manner of this master, copied his Rome. Having attained the long-cherished object of works, and especially the picture of the "Martyrdom of his desires, he had yet to struggle with adverse fortune. St. Andrew,” painted in fresco, in the Church of St. He enjoyed but few of the advantages which the friend. Gregory. But the more correct taste of Poussin shelship of Marino seemed to promise him. That gentle- tered him from all seduction; he was the only one who man retired to Naples, his native city, where he soon studied the “ Flagellation" of the same saint, painted after died. Before quitting Rome he had recommended in the same building, on the opposite side, by DominiPoussin to Marcel Sacchetti, who presented him to the chino, who was regarded by Poussin as a worthy succesCardinal Barberini, nephew of Pope Urban the Seventh ; sor of the Caracchi, as well for correctness of design as but, unfortunately, this new patron set out immediately for vigour of expression. At this time the health of for his legations in France and Spain, without being Dominichino was in a declining state, and he lived in such able to assist the poor artist. Thus left without friends, close retirement that he was supposed by some to be without money, and, for a time, almost without hope of dead; but having heard that a young Frenchınan was rising in his profession, Poussin continued to labour making a careful study from his picture, he caused hard for the means of subsistence; he was forced to himself to be conveyed in his chair to the church, where sell his pictures for but little more than the cost of he conversed for some time with Poussin without makthe materials:-he sold two battle-pieces, each contain- ing himself known. The result was honourable to both; ing a large number of figures, for fourteen crowns; | for, from that day, Poussin passed much of his time and he was paid eight francs for a figure of a prophet, with Dominichino; studied in his school; enjoyed his while a copy of the very same picture by another painter friendship, and profited by his advice, until the old man produced double that sum.
died. Most men who have excelled in any pursuit have Poussin displayed his good taste and courage in sup. generally found the commencement of their career to porting the fame of Dominichino, which was then so be one of trial and difficulty; as if it were kindly overborne by the partisans of Guido, that his picture of intended to prove the sincerity of their attachment by the “ Communion of St. Jerome," had been torn from denying success to enthusiasm merely, and granting it its place in the church of San Girolamo della Carità, only to that constancy and strength of devotion proved and thrown into a lumber room, where it remained forby years of servitude. Poussin's love for his art was gotten, until the monks, desirous of having a new altarsuficient to support him amid such poverty and priva- piece, requested Poussin to paint one for them, and tion as would have driven a meaner man to seek, in a sent him Dominichino's picture as old canvass to paint meaner pursuit, that recompense which these lofty aspir- it upon. He no sooner saw it, than, struck with its ings denied him; but there was an energy about the cha- extraordinary merit, he conveyed it to the church for racter of Poussin which maintained him in his struggle which it had been painted, and gave a public lecture with fortune; as if he were determined to wrest from upon it, in which he ventured to compare it with the her those gifts which she refused on gentle terms. In "Transfiguration," and pronounced it to be one of the the midst of all his troubles Poussin found a treasure finest pictures in Rome. Dominichino had been accused more costly than any that fortune could bestow, namely, of borrowing the composition from a sketch by the a friend. Francis Quesnoy, surnamed the Fleming, a Caracchi on the same subject, but Poussin showed that skilful sculptor, was then in Rome: he had been as they had never finished their picture, and that Dominiunsuccessful as Poussin, and a fellow-feeling in misfor- chino altered and improved it in every particular, and tune was a bond of union between them :—they studied that so far from injuring them by appropriating their together; they toiled together; they suffered together ; idea, he had shown what a noble use might be made of and they also shared together that true enjoyment which it, and from it had composed one of the finest pictures springs from a genuine love of the beautiful and the in the world. The appeal was successful, and from this true in nature, science, and art. The two artists exa time the elegant but weaker attractions of the rival mined, and copied, and measured, with the greatest care, school gave way, and Dominichino assumed his just many of the master-pieces of antique sculpture, and rank among the painters of Italy. It is said that studied therein the principles of beauty and proportion. Poussin thus produced a sort of revolution among
Poussin's love of study was such, that, on holidays, artists, and that many of the followers and pupils of he withdrew from the merry-making parties of his Guido abandoned that master in order to study Domiacquaintance, and retired to the Capitol to make some nichino; and that Poussin's share in the proceeding, sketch. As he wandered amid the ruins of ancient honourable as it was to him, was the cause of some Rome, his imagination would restore them to their pris- inconvenience if not of danger to him. tine grandeur, -repeople them with their ancient occu At this time the see of Rome and the court of pants,-- constitute himself an ancient Roman;- thus France were at variance, and considerable acrimony would he acquire ideas and feelings which animated his existed among his Holiness's troops against all Frenchcompositions.
These soldiers, whose duty it was to maintain I have often admired, (said Vigneul de Marville, who the tranquillity of the city, often disturbed it by insultknew him at a late period of his life,) I have often admired ing Frenchmen whom they chanced to meet in the the love he had for his art. Old as he was I frequently saw streets. One day Poussin was returning to his lodgings him among the ruins of ancient Rome, sketching a scene with his portfolio under his arm, in company
with two which had pleased him; and I often met him with his handkerchief full of stones, moss, or flowers, which he Fontane, near Monte Cavallo, some soldiers who inime
of his countrymen, when they met at the Quattro carried home that he might copy them exactly from nature. One day I asked him how he had attained to such a degree diately drew their swords and ran upon Poussin and his of perfection as to have gained so high a rank among the companions. The latter ran away, leaving Poussin to great painters of Italy? He answered, “I have neglected deal with the assailants; he parried their blows, by nothing.”
means of his portfolio; but did not escape so well, but In company with Quesnoy, Poussin also applied that he received a blow upon his right hand between the himself with assiduity to the study of architecture, first and middle finger, and if the sword had not luckily geometry, and perspective. At Paris he had com been turned aside, a great misfortune must have hapmenced the study of anatomy; he continued it at Rome; pened both to him and to painting. Poussin, however,
continued to defend himself valiantly although he was | rantly attribute this feeble work to the great masters without arms, throwing stones as he retreated, until the who had already adorned that splendid building with passengers taking his part, he made good his escape to their master-pieces.” his lodgings. From this time Poussin thought it pru About this time, also, Poussin painted for the Mardent to lay aside his French attire, which then differed quis del Pozzo, of Turin, “ The Passage of the Red from the Italian, and to adopt the latter; and he never Sea,” and “ The Setting up of the Golden Calf in the again resumed the costume of his native land.
Wilderness.” The “ Striking of the Rock," was a gift About this period Poussin was attacked with a malady of friendship to Jacques Stella, his pupil, one of those which, during some days, exposed his life to danger; who most nearly approached his manner. but in this, as in the other events of his hitherto che Poussin was not wanting in gratitude to the Cavaliere quered career, he was not abandoned by Providence; del Pozzo, his generous protector. He painted for him he was visited in his sufferings by a countryman named a nuinber of pictures, among which was the first and Jacques Dughet, who was cook to the Roman senator. smallest series of “The Seven Sacraments;" now in the This kind-hearted man caused the poor artist to be re- possession of the Duke of Rutland at Belvoir Castle, moved to his own house, and recommended him to the but one of them was unfortunately destroyed in the fire attentions of his wife and children, who, entering fully which occurred there in the year 1816. into the spirit of benevolence which had prompted this We have now arrived at that part of the life of Pouskind action, watched over him, nursed him, and consoled sin when he had attained happiness and tranquillity. him with their friendship. Poussin felt so much grate - Enjoying the esteem of all who knew him, his increasing ful affection for this family, that, when he recovered, he celebrity neither prompted his ambition nor multiplied desired to become one of its members. He sought and his wants; he devoted himself to the execution of a vast obtained one of Dughet's daughters in marriage, and number of subjects, of which even a list would exceed the ceremony was performed in the year 1629, on the the limits of this article. day of St. Luke, the patron saint of painters. The As the fame of Poussin extended over Europe, his marriage-portion of his wife furnished Poussin with the
own country was jealous at being indebted to Italy for means of purchasing a small house on the Trinita de' | the developement of his talents, and wished to share in Monti, formerly the Pincian-hill, a situation admirably the light and lustre which the works of her exiled son adapted for painters, commanding as it did the finest cast around him. The Cardinal de Richelieu had long views of Rome. Although this was a marriage of affec- desired to see the arts again flourish in France, and by tion, which lasted until it was dissolved by death, it was his advice the king had sanctioned the vast plan, (which also one of prudence, for Poussin was thereby secured it was reserved to a subsequent age fully to realize,) of against want and the mental inquietudes consequent on completing the Louvre, adorning the great gallery, and an insufficient income, so that he could henceforth restoring the Palace of Fontainebleau and other royal devote himself entirely to the study and exercise of his residences. art. His wife brought him no children, but he adopted The exalted talents of Poussin, the propriety of his one of her brothers and taught him his art; this was conduct, and the moderation of his character, naturally Gaspar Dughet, afterwards celebrated as Gaspar Pous- indicated him as the leader of such an enterprise; and sin, Nicholas having conferred on him his own name accordingly in the year 1639, he was invited to Paris. and his talent for landscape-painting.
Poussin, however, was slow to accept the invitation; he On the return of the Cardinal Barberini to Rome, called to mind the hardships he had suffered in France; Poussin was recompensed for the sufferings he had he knew how to appreciate the levity of his countrymen, endured in his absence. The cardinal gave him com and the promises of the great; and besides, he had be missions for a number of pictures chiefly on subjects come acclimatized in Italy; he was beloved by his wife, chosen from the Scriptures. Poussin also painted for cherished by his friends, honoured by amateurs of art, him his celebrated picture of the “ Death of German and respected by his rivals: he feared to risk his reputaicus," and the “ Taking of Jerusalem by the Emperor tion and his happiness in another land. During two Titus.”
years he resisted the repeated invitations of Louis the He also executed a number of designs after the most Thirteenth, the requests of his powerful minister, and beautiful monuments of antiquity for the Cavaliere del the enthusiasm of his countrymen. At length when all Pozzo. This gentleman had been employed by the other means had failed, M. de Chanteloup, one of the Barberini family to superintend the excavations and dis- royal household, was sent to Rome to exert his influence coveries they were engaged in at Palestrina. Through among the friends of our artist to persuade him to aco, his means Poussin obtained permission to study in the cept the royal invitation. This gentleman, who was a Barberini Museum, which contained some of the finest great lover of painting, no sooner saw the series of the specimens of ancient art, as well as a choice collection Sacraments belonging to the Cavaliere del Pozzo, than of pictures, many of which have since found their way he requested Poussin to procure their owner's permission to England. Gems, cameos, and statues abounded in to have them copied, leaving the choice of the artist to that rich gallery, which, among other things, possessed Poussin if he would not undertake to do it himself. the beautiful vase now in the British Museum, and Del Pozzo, however, was unwilling to trust them to known as the Portland Vase.
another artist, and Poussin preferred painting a new Through the means of Del Pozzo, Poussin first be- series to copying his own compositions. He did not came acquainted with the writings of Leonardo de Vinci, execute this work, however, till some years afterwards, and was engaged to decipher those difficult manuscripts. when he produced a new series different in design from The publication of that great man's Art of Painting, is the former. due to Poussin, who made a number of designs illustra Poussin at length yielding to the solicitations of his tive of the theory of the author. The kind friendship friends, consented to accompany M. de Chanteloup to of Del Pozzo, and the patronage of Cardinal Barberini, the French court, and towards the end of the year 1640, procured for Poussin the honourable commission of he set out, taking with him a younger brother of his painting one of the great pictures which was to be exe- wife's, John Dughet, as his secretary, leaving his family cuted mosaic in the church of St. Peter. This and affairs under the especial care of the Cavaliere picture, representing "The Martyrdom of St. Erasmus," del Pozzo. is one of the master-pieces of Poussin, and the only Poussin's reception at the French court will be most performance to which he has attached his name; and interesting to the reader, if conveyed in his own words the motive for doing so in this instance was thus in a letter addressed to the Cavaliere del Pozzo, modestly expressed by him, “lest any one should igno- within a few days after his arrival at Paris.
Full of confidence in the good will which you have al- | THE NATURAL HISTORY AND MANAGEways shown me, I think it my duty to give you an account
MENT OF CAGE BIRDS. of the fortunate success of my journey, as well as of my situation, and the place I inhabit, that you, my kind protector, may know where to lay your commands on me. My health was very good during the whole journey from Rome to Fontainebleau, where I was very honourably received in the palace by a nobleman deputed for that purpose by M. de Noyers; from thence I was taken to Paris in that minister's coach, and had scarcely arrived when he came out to meet me, embraced me in a friendly manner, and showed very great pleasure at seeing me in France. At night I was conducted by his orders to the place he had destined for my apartment; it is a little palace, for so it may be called, in the midst of the garden of the Tuilleries, containing nine chambers on three stories, without reckoning the ground floor, which consists of a kitchen, a porter's lodge, a hall, and three convenient rooms for domestic purposes, There is, besides, a beautiful and spacious garden, planted with fruit trees and vegetables of all kinds, a pretty plot of THE NIGHTINGALE, (Sylvia Euscinia.) flowers, three little fountains, a well, a very handsome court, and a stable. I have a beautiful view from my windows,
Beautiful Nightingale, who shall pourtray and I can imagine that in summer this retreat must be a
All the varying turns of this flowing lar! perfect paradise. I found the centre apartment furnished
And where is the lyre, whose chords shall reply
To the notes of thy changeful meloly! nobly, and all necessary provisions laid in, even to fire
We may linger indeed, and listeu to thes, wood, and a cask of old wine. For three days my friends
But the linked chain of thy harmous and I were entertained at the king's expense.
It is not for iportal hands to unbind, day M. de Noyers presented me to the Cardinal, who took
Nor the clue of thy mazy music w find. my hand, embraced me, and treated me with extraordinary
Thy hoine is the wood on the echoing hill,
Or the verslaut banks of the forest rili, condescension. A few days afterwards, I was taken to St.
And soft as the south wind the branches among, Germains, where M. de Noyers was to have presented me to
Thy plaintive lament goes floating along. the king; but M. de Noyers being indisposed, I was not
Minstrelsy of the Woods. introduced till the next day, when M. le Grand, one of the court favourites, presented me. The good and gracious The most celebrated of all birds, both in ancient and prince deigned to caress me, and asked me a great many modern times, is the Nightingale. It is the Philomela questions during the half hour he kept me with him; after of the ancients; that is, “ the lover of darkness," from which, turning round to the court, he said, I think we
the habit of the bird to sing late in the evening and in have taken in Vouet,' and then he ordered me to paint the great pictures for his chapel of Fontainebleau and St. Ger- the early morning hours, when other birds are at roost. mains. When I went home they brought me two thousand
One of the earliest notices of the nightingale is in the crowns in gold, in a handsome blue velvet purse. One Odyssey. thousand for my salary, and one thousand for my journey,
As when the months are clad in flowery green, without reckoning my expenses. And, indeed, money is Sad Philomel in bowery shades unseen. very necessary in this country where every thing is ex Hesiod and Oppian notice the variety of its song, treinely dear.
calling it the “various-voiced,” or “various-throated" I have now turned my thoughts upon the works I am bird ; Sophocles refers to its notes as affording an image to execute; they are pictures, cartoons for tapestry, and of vociferous sorrow; and Virgil and Ovid attribute to many other things. I shall have the honour of sending you them a plaintive character. Later poets describe the as soon as my packages arrive, and I am relieved from un- nightingale as lamenting and complaining, or giving easiness on account of them, I hope to portion my time in way to despair. such a manner as to employ a part of it in the service of All abandon'd to despair she sings your brother the Chevalier.
Her sorrows through the night. - Thomson. I recommend my little household interests to your care, Coleridge, however, does not admit that the character since you deign to take charge of them during my absence, of the song is melancholy. He says: which shall not be long if I can help it. I beseech you, A melancholy bird? Oh! idle thoughtsince you are born to be kind to me, to bear, with your In nature there is nothing melancholy. usual generous patience, the trouble I must give you, and But some night-wandering man, whose heart was pierced to content yourself in return with my entire affection. May With the remembrance of some grievous wrong, the Lord grant you a long and happy life. As to me, with Or slow distemper, or neglected love; all the respect of which I am capable, I remain, &c.,
(And so, poor wretch! fill'd all things with himself, Paris, Jan. 6th, 1641.
And made all gentle sounds send back the tale Another article will enable us to complete this me
Of his own sorrow ;) he, and such as he, moir of Poussin. We conclude the present notice with
First named these notes a melancholy strain,
And many a poet echoes the conceit. a short account of the picture from which our frontis.
We have learnt piece is taken.
A different lore: we may not thus profane Poussin painted two pictures on the subject of the Nature's sweet voices, alway full of love “ Arcadian Shepherds." "One is in the collection of the And joyance! 'Tis the merry nightingale Duke of Devonshire. In this picture the thought has That crowds, and hurries, and precipitates, been highly and justly praised. Two Arcadian shep.
With fast thick warble his delicious notes, herds and a shepherdess are looking on the inscription
As he were fearful that an April night on a tomb in the midst of an agreeable landscape. The
Would be too short for him to utter forth inscription carries the moral; it is simply, I TOO DWELT
His love-chant, and disburthen his full soul
Of all its music! IN ARCADIA. In the second picture, (now in the Louvre,) from in the south to Sweden in the north. It is also found
The nightingale inhabits Europe from Italy and Spain which our frontispiece is taken, the subject is differently in Siberia, and has been seen in some parts of Asia and treated. Here the tomb is in the middle of the picture, Africa. It leaves the temperate countries of Europe as instead of the side as in the other. This is preferred winter approaches, and retires into warmer regions. by the French critics, and, perhaps, justly. The idea is Sonnini has observed the arrival of nightingales in the same, and the persons are only different in position. Lower Egypt during the autumn, has seen them during
winter on the fresh and smiling plains of the Delta, and has also witnessed their passage in the islands of the
Archipelago. In some parts of Asia Minor the night. The bill is more than half an inch long, slender, of a
, it has taken up its abode. These birds are found in the lower mandible. The upper parts of the body are considerable numbers on the coast of Barbary, where yellowish brown, the wings and tail dusky, with a redthey are always more numerous at the time when they dish tinge at the margin of the feathers. The sides of have quite disappeared from the countries of the north. the neck and flanks are pale ashen grey, passing into So powerful is the instinct of migration in the nightin- white on the throat and the middle of the belly. None of gale that those which are kept in activity usually exhibit the colours are by any means decided, and there is noinuch agitation, especially during the night, at the periods thing striking in the appearance of the bird. The female when he species migrate. The departure and return differs little from the male, but the head is rounder, the of these birds is due not only to the change in the eyes are rather smaller, and the throat is not so white. season, but to the abundance or scarcity of their appro- Bechstein notices a striking resemblance between the priate food.
female redstart and the nightingale, but says of the When passing through countries which are foreign to latter, “His step and attitude are prouder, and his them on their route to their winter or summer home, actions more deliberate. When he walks it is by measured nightingales never pour forth their enchanting melody: regular hops. After a certain number he stops, looks at it is only during the nesting season, and when they are
himself, shakes his wings, raises his tail gracefully, spreads rearing their young, that those strains are heard which it a little, stoops his head several times, raises his tail several give so much delight. The song of these birds is said he bends his head towards it, and generally looks at it with
times, and proceeds. If any object attracts his attention, to be richer and more varied in some countries than in only one eye. It is true that he jumps hastily upon the others. Thus the nightingales of Persia, Karamania, insects which constitute his food; but he does not seize and Greece, are said to sing better than those of Italy; them as eagerly as other birds ; on the contrary, he stops the Italian birds again are valued above those of France, short, and seems to deliberate whether it is prudent to eat and the French above the English. Whether this be them or not. Generally he has a serious circumspect air, anything more than a fanciful theory, we have no good but his foresight is not proportioned to it, for he falls readily
into all the snares which are laid for him. If he once esmeans of judging; but the following testimony seems to contradict the idea that situation has much influence
capes, however, he is not so easily caught again, and becomes
as cunning as any other birds." on the song of this bird. “In 1802,” says Mr. Symes,
The latter end of April is the usual period of the “ being at Geneva, at the residence of a friend, about three miles from the town, in a quiet sequestered spot, surrounded
commencement of the nightingale's song. It ceases or by gardens and forests, and within hearing of the murmur
suffers interruption when the young are hatched, but of the Rhone, there, on a beautiful
still evening, the air should the nest be destroyed, or other cause prolong the soft and balmy, the windows of the house open, and the period of incubation, the male resumes his strains, and twilight chequered by trees, there we heard two nightin- in places where nightingales abound several may genegales sing indeed most delightfully, but not more so than rally be heard in full song during the season. one we heard down a stair, in a dark cellar, in the High
Far and near
They answer and provoke each other's songs,
With skirmish and capricious passagings, the fumes of tobacco and spirits; it was a place where car And murmurs musical, and swift jug, jug, riers lodged, or put up,-and the heads of the porters and
And one low piping sound, more sweet than all, chairmen, carrying luggage, nearly came in contact with
Stirring the air with such an harmony,
That should you close your eyes, you might almost
Forget it was not day.
Some naturalists affirm that there is a part of the arrives and departs alone. It appears in England from night in which nightingales seldom sing; that they are the middle of April to the beginning of May, according not, according to their name, “lovers of darkness," but to the season.
At first it remains in hedges and thickets hail the moonlight or the dawn of day. Others affirm, on the borders of cultivated ground, where an abundant that they are silent only on dark windy nights, but at supply of food can be procured; but as soon as the
other times, having once commenced their song, they larger trees are covered with foliage it retires into the continue it without intermission the whole night. “This woods, and hides in the thickest recesses. The neigh
I know, (says Neville Wood,) from actual observation,
having more than once remained out of doors nearly the bourhood of some purling stream is generally chosen by whole night, purposely to discover whether the bird or the the bird, and the male usually has two or three favourite naturalist would first be wearied. If on a dark and windy trees near the nest, on one or the other of which he night it does not sing, it may generally be roused by imitatconstantly sings during the period of incubation, and ing its strains; if this be done on a favourable night, it will never allows one of his own species to approach the commence instantly; but on a cold and chilly night it is spot. The nest is usually commenced about the begin- sometimes very difficult to rouse, though I have seldom ning of May, and is formed with coarse weeds and dried
been so unfortunate as to fail entirely. The shutting of an oak-leaves on the outside, and with horse-hair, little adjoining gate, the striking of a church clock, the passing
of a cart or coach, if near a road, or even the hearing pas. roots, and cow-hair on the inside. It is placed near the ground in brush-wood at the foot of a hedge, or on the sengers walking along the hard turnpike, will frequently
cause it to commence singing! the very incidents which low branches of some thick shrub, and is so slightly one might have supposed would disturb so shy a bird.”. constructed that an attempt to displace it will often The nightingale is said to attach himself to the place cause it to crumble to pieces. Four or five eggs of a which gave him birth, and to return to it every year greenish brown colour are deposited in it, and the male until it has lost its charm or advantage, by the cutting supplies food to the female while she is sitting. The down of trees, &c. If the bird dies or is caught, the little ones have the body covered with feathers in a fort convenience of his retreat causes it to be soon occupied night from the time they are hatched, and quit the nest by one of his fellows, and the ear, well accustomed to before they are able to fly, following their parents as the notes of the former occupant, will immediately dewell as they can by jumping from branch to branch. tect a difference in the song of the new comer. When they are fully fledged the mother bird leaves Many attempts have been made to give a written them to the care of her mate, and begins to construct a description of the notes which compose the nightin. new nest for her second brood.
gale's song; of these, Bechstein's is the most ingenious, The full-grown nightingale is a bird of elegant pro- though ludicrous in appearance. We shall here content portions, but of unattractive plumage. It is about five ourselves with a general notice of the bird's powers inches long, two and a half of which belong to the tail. I found in Griffith's CUVIER. “The nightingale unites
the talents of all the singing birds, and succeeds in every | almost any kind of food, provided it be mixed with meat; style; sixteen different burdens may be reckoned in its but it is necessary to be very careful in its diet, in order song, well determined by the first and last notes. It can
to preserve health. When the birds are first caught, sustain the song uninterrupted during twenty seconds, and
meal worms and fresh ants' eggs are the first things the sphere which its voice can fill is at least a mile in dia
which should be offered to them : if it is not possible to meter. Song is so peculiarly the attribute of this species, that even the female possesses it, less strong and varied, it procure these, a mixture of hard egg, ox-heart minced, is true, than that of the male, but as to the rest entirely re
and white bread, is given, but this artificial food is very sembling it; even in its dreaming sleep, the nightingale injurious, and often kills the birds. Subsequently, howwarbles. What peculiarly constitutes the charm of this ever, this and other mixtures may be given occasionally, bird is, that it never repeats itself, like other birds; it cre in turn with the natural food. Bechstein's directions ates at each burden, or passage, and even if it ever resumes
for keeping up a supply of meal worms, are as follows: the same, it is always with new accents and added embel
The means of always having a plentiful supply of meat lishments. In calm weather, in the fine nights of spring, worms is to fill a large earthenware or brown stone jar with when its voice is heard alone, undisturbed by any other wheat bran, barley, or oatmeal, and put into it some pieces sound, nothing can be more ravishing and delightful: then of sugar paper or old shoe leather. Into each of these jars, it developes, in their utmost plentitude, all the resources of of about two quarts in size, half a pint of meal worms is its incomparable organ; but from the setting in of the sum
thrown, (these may be bought at any baker's or miller's,) mer solstice, it grows more sparing of its song, it is seldom and by leaving them quiet for three months, covered with a heard, and when it is, there is neither animation nor con
bit of woollen cloth, soaked in beer, or merely in water, they stancy in its tones. In a few days at this time, the song
will change into beetles (Tenebris molitor, Linn.) These altogether ceases, and we hear nothing but hoarse cries and
insects soon propagate by eggs, and increase the number of a croaking sound, in which we would in vain endeavour to
maggots so much that one such jar will maintain a nightinrecognise the melodious Philomela."
gale. Great patience, attention, and care, are necessary in For providing ants' eggs, (“improperly so called, since the management of a nightingale as a cage bird; yet if they are the pupæ in their cocoons,") Þe gives the fol. the temper and habits of the captive are consulted, he lowing hint:-becomes attached to his owner, and has been known to
For getting them out of the ant hill, a fine sunny day in die of regret. at a change of masters. If taken at his summer is chosen, and provided with a shovel,
we begin by full growth, he becomes, under proper precautions, gently uncovering a nest of the large wood ants (Formica rufa, reconciled to confinement, and begins to sing in about | LINN.), till we arrive at the eggs; these are then taken away a week afterwards. Nightingales may either be allowed
and placed in the sun, in the middle of a cloth whose corto fly about a room, or confined in a cage; the latter
ners are turned up over little branches well covered with
leaves. The ants, in order to protect the eggs from the heat plan most promotes their singing. The cage must never
of the sun, quickly remove them under the shelter which is be less than a foot and a half in length, by about one
prepared for them. In this manner they are easily obtained in width, and one or more in height. The top should freed from dirt, and from the ants also. be lined with some soft material, that the bird, when Ants'
eggs form the best summer food for these birds, first caught, may not injure his head by flying against it. and two or three meal worms prove a sufficient addition. Bechstein gives the following as the best form and pro A stock of dried ants' eggs may be kept, and mixed with portions for a nightingale's cage :-Length, one foot roasted ox-heart and raw carrot, both finely grated. A and a half; breadth, eighth inches; height, fifteen paste that will keep for years is often made for nightininches in the middle, thirteen at the sides. The sides gales, of the following ingredients :--Two pounds of to be made of osiers about a quarter of an inch thick ; rolled beef, a pound of grey peas, a pound of sweet the bottom of the same material, but covered by a alnionds, an ounce and a half of saffron, and twelve drawer an inch and a quarter deep. The feeding trough fresh eggs. The meat is minutely hashed, the peas and is introduced at the side, with edges high enough to almonds are pounded as finely as possible, and the whole prevent the bird from spilling much of his food. In the mixed with the eggs, and an infusion of the saffron. middle of the front of the cage, and extending from top Round cakes are then formed, and baked in a cool oven to bottom, is a cylindrical projection in the form of a to the consistence of biscuits. Another paste is like the belfry, in which is suspended a large drinking glass. former, with the addition of half a pound of poppy seeds, This projection is made of osiers, like the rest of the the same of roasted millet, two ounces of flour, a pound cage. The middle and lower sticks are covered with of white honey, and two or three ounces of fresh butter. green cloth, firmly sewed on, that the feet of the night. The seeds are pounded and sifted, and the whole reduced ingale may be preserved from injury. Green is also the
to a perfect paste. Bechstein, however, is opposed to best colour to use for painting the osiers and lining the these preparations, and says that birds fed with them roof of the cage. But the paint must be perfectly dry, often fall into a decline and die. and the cage free from the smell of it, before the bird is Nightingales suffer much during their moultings, and put into it.
require at that time a more succulent diet, and sometimes This bird dislikes change of situation during its cap- a spider, which acts as a purgative. They have a habit tivity, and has been observed to cease singing, and to of bathing immediately after they have sung, and should remain obstinately silent, on the removal of its cage therefore be daily provided with fresh water. Their from the accustomed spot. It is better, therefore, either other ailments are such as are common to the birds to accustom it when it is moulting to continual changes, described in our preceding articles. Their feet are so as to break through this habit, or keep the cage in very apt to become clogged and injured, unless occaone situation during the whole season. The choice of sionally moistened in warm water, and freed from dirt this situation is not a matter of indifference, and the and scales. prisoner's taste must be consulted in the matter. Some
The love of liberty is so strong in this bird, that it is birds prefer a light and cheerful situation, others appear far from our wish to recommend or encourage the keepmore lively in a shaded retired corner. On first placing ing of it in confinement. The delicious strains poured one of these birds in a cage, it is necessary to cover two forth from many a grove and copse at this season of the or three sides of it from the light, as the bird is often so year, may indeed afford the purest delight; but where much alarmed when exposed on all sides, that it soon the habits of the bird are so entirely opposed to domesends its life by dashing against the bars.
tication, and where the slightest inattention, as to its The food of the nightingale in a state of nature con peculiar food, may cause it a miserable and untimely sists of insects, whether in the caterpillar or the perfect death, there is every reason to be contented with the state : towards the end of summer it also devours elder- free and happy song of the bird at liberty, and to refrain berries and currants. The bird is naturally voracious, from subjecting to imprisonment the most charming and and when in captivity it will accommodate itself to poetical songster of the British Isles.