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Prose and Poetry
CONNECTED WITH ENGLISH WILD FLOWERS.
Intended as an Embellishment
TO THE STUDY OF BOTANY.
BY THE AUTHOR OF
“ Flowers worthy of Paradise, which not nice art,
In bed and curious knots, but Nature boon
PRINTED FOR HARVEY AND DARTON,
A work of this nature may be deemed by some a needless addition to the many volumes already written on this single branch of education. For such objectors we have a little story. It is related of an eastern sage, who had come from a distant province to offer himself as candidate for a seat in a celebrated academy, that he arrived too late, and the learned body was reluctantly obliged to announce to him the pre-occupation of the only vacant place. In order to make this declaration in as delicate and dig. nified a manner as possible, the president filled a goblet with water so completely as not to admit ano. ther drop, and with an air of courteous regret pointed to the emblematic cup. The philosopher understood its meaning; but immediately stooped down, and taking a rose-leaf from the ground, laid it so gently on the surface of the water that none overflowed. The appeal was successful: the rules of the academy were waved; and the sage was admitted by acclamation.
If this little volume were a scientific work, it would be difficult to find for it a place as yet unoccupied: though but a drop, it would fall into a vessel already full. It announces itself, however, merely as an intellectual embellishment to the science. It professes not to throw any fresh light on the subject, nor to initiate by any new method into its hidden mysteries; but simply to give additional interest to the study of botany, by the association of ideas poetical, historical, or classical, with some of the bearltiful productions of our fields and woods.
As this is absolutely “ a wild garland,” the strict arrangement of class and order has not been observed. The flowers of which it is composed have been gathered as fancy directed, and are offered to the reader, not as the fairest and most fragrant, but as a sample of the treasures every hedge-row and meadow may furnish.