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A moment thou mayst Jull the soul
“ Oh! happier far, the lowliest bed,
As when some great painter dips His pencil in the gloom of earthquake and eclipse.' I could not, without effort, constrain myself to the task of either recalling, or constructing into a regular narrative, a whole burden of horrors which lies upon my brain."
Papaver somniferum. White Poppy.
Stem, leaves, calyx, and capsule smooth. Summits ten. Petals
white tinged with purple, with large deep purple blotches at the base. The whole plant glaucous. Stem three feet high, smooth in the lower part, rough upwards with expanding hairs. Capsule roundish, very smooth.-Withering
“ That Ceres with my flower is grieved,
Some think, but they are much deceived ;
In Grecian mythology this plant was consisidered sacred to Ceres, because its seeds were said to be the first food the disconsolate goddess was prevailed on to taste, after the loss of her daughter Proserpine. We feel disposed to regret, that the poppy more especially con
secrated to her service was not the splendid scarlet flower so common in our fields, and with which the Greeks were well acquainted, as it owes to them the distinctive name it still bears, (Rhæas,) derived from a Greek word descriptive of the short-lived beauty of its blossoms.
In professor Martyn's notes on Virgil may be seen the reasons for deciding the point in favour of the somniferum. Perhaps one of the most conclusive is the following. The ancient statues of Ceres were decorated with ears of corn mingled with the heads of poppies; and these heads, in the statues which remain to the present day, are round capsules, like the seed-vessels of the P. somniferum, and not oblong, like those of the the P. Rhæas.
Still the blended corn and poppies are beautifully emblematic of our own, as well as of the Grecian, corn-fields.
This elegant decoration ornamented the colossal statue of Ceres at Eleusis, discovered a few years ago by Dr. Clarke and his fellowtraveller. Of this discovery, and the steps subsequently taken to secure so rich a prize, Dr. C. has given an animated description. We present it to our readers in his own words, as illustrative of the claims of the poppy tribe to honourable notice.
• We began our journey from Megara to
wards Eleusis, filled with curiosity to examine the vestiges of the Eleusinian temple, and along a tract of land where every footstep excites the most affecting recollections. By every ancient well, and upon every tomb at which the traveller is induced to halt, and to view the noble objects by which he is surrounded, a crowd of interesting events rush into his mind, and so completely occupy it, that even fatigue and fever, from which he is seldom free, are for a moment forgotten. Arriving upon the site of the city of Eleusis, we found the plain covered with ruins. The first thing we noticed was an aqueduct, part of which remained entire. It conducted towards the Acropolis by the temple of Ceres. The remains of this temple are more conspicuous than those of any other structure, except the aqueduct. The paved road which led to it is also visible, and the pavement of the temple yet remains. But to heighten the interest with which we regard. ed the mysteries of the Eleusinian fane, and to fulfil the sanguine expectations we had formed, the fragment of a colossal statue, mentioned by many authors as that of the goddess herself, appeared in colossal majesty, among the mouldering vestiges of her once splendid sanctuary. We found it exactly as it had been described to us, on the road-side, immediately
before entering the village, and in the midst of a heap of dung, buried as high as the neck. Yet even this degrading situation had not been assigned to it wholly independent of its ancient history. The inhabitants of the small village which is now situated among the ruins of Eleusis, still regarded this statue with a very high degree of superstitious veneration. They attributed to its presence the fertility of their land, and it was for this reason that they heaped around it the manure intended for their fields. They believed that the loss of it would be followed by the failure of their annual harvests; and they pointed to the ears of bearded wheat, among the sculptured ornaments of the head of the figure, as a never-failing indication of the produce of the soil.
“ The statue, consisting of the white marble of Pentilicus, which also afforded the materials of the temple, bears evident marks of the best age of the Grecian sculpture; but it is in a very ruined state. In the calathus, which yet remains as an ornament of the head, the sculpture, though much injured, is still fine; and that it was originally finished with the greatest elegance and labour is evident, because, in the foliage of a small chaplet which surrounds the whole, a small poppy is represented upon every