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The chimneyhaunting Swallow skim the pool,
And scanty fare of Winter. FAUNA. — The females and young of the brown or Norway Rat, now leave their holes at the sides of ponds and rivers, to which they had betaken themselves in the Spring, and repair to barns, outhouses, cornstacks, and dwellings. The males are said to remain in their holes, having laid up a winter store of Acorns. The Black Rats are become scarce.
November 4. St. Charles Borromeo. SS. Vitalis and Agricola. St. Joannicius.
St. Clarus Martyr. St. Brinstan.
Jovis epulum.-Rom. Cal. The ancients frequently fabled of the feasts of the gods. above, at the same time taking care not to omit doing them the honour of imitation below, and of instituting very agreeable and luxurious festivals in their memory. Aeolus says to Juno, in Virgils Aeneid, Tu das epulis accumbere Dịcúm.
CHRONOLOGY. – Landing of King William, Prince of Orange, who reigned together with his Consort Mary.
HYGEIA. - The most prevalent diseases at this time of year are those various catarrhal complaints, commonly called Colds, Coughs, and Rheums, which are usually, though falsely, ascribed to exposure to cold and wet. There is no doubt that checked perspiration from sudden changes of temperature, from cold and wet feet, and particularly from sitting in draughts of air, will often cause colds, and produce other very bad effects on the constitution; yet the generality of colds are epidemical complaints, and arise in consequence of particular states of the weather at present but little known. What first impressed on our minds the atmospherical cause of colds, was that, in many instances, they seemed to spread in a family, or even in a whole village, as if by contagion, insomuch that many persons are apt to regard them as being catching, from inhaling the breath of persons who have got bad colds. This, however, is doubtful, and the fact seems to be, that some particular state of
the air arises, which produces colds in a number of persons at once, or in rapid succession. Sometimes the prevailing cold is merely an affection of the nose, more or less violent; at others it is attended with more fever, singing in the head, general lassitude, and considerable derangement of the stomach and bowels. Sometimes coughs are the prevailing symptoms; and on going into a church in November, the continual coughing of a large assembly totally prevents our distinctly hearing the officiating priest, and illustrates the position we have advanced here, that particular symptoms of cold prevail in great numbers at once, as coughs, for example. These, and other considerations, have induced us to regard common colds like the influenza, the glanders in horses, and many other distempers, to be atmospherical epidemics. This has been illustrated by a great number of examples, in Observations on Periodical and Atmospherical Diseases, London, 8vo. 1817.
We now come to the treatment of colds, a subject hitherto much mistaken; and our first rule is — Avoid sudden changes of temperature; but, at the same time, avoid being in rooms too warm or too close. When the weather be wet, very cold, or changeable, persons who have not been much accustomed to exposure to the weather should not go abroad; but in general, and for hardy persons in particular, too much coddling is injurious to a cold. As to regimen, it may be said that it ought, in every instance, to be light: persons with colds should avoid eating animal food, and all strong liquors; and should take plenty of warm drinks of a cooling and diluent nature; such as warm Tea, Gruel, Apple Posset, sweetened with Tamarind, and acidulated with Lemon : and, in every instance where the bowels are not already very open, should take some aperient medicine; such as, for example, a pill composed of three grains of Extr. Aloes, and three of Rhubarb; and, where Calomel agrees with the patient, a grain of that medicine may be added. Such a plan will generally facilitate the cure of colds and coughs; though, after all, they will sometimes run a certain course, to which some unperceived change of atmosphere generally puts an end.
Lastly, an odd rule given us by an old gentleman and practitioner, and of 84 years' experience, may be added ; namely, “ Avoid all doctors, and doctors' stuff, as it is vulgarly called, as more harm is done to the constitution by tampering with medicines and drugs from the Apothecary's shop, than people are commonly aware of. Buchan's Domestic Medicine is a work which no large family ought to be without, as there are few medical men who can be of so much service
to persons under sickness, as this work can afford when perused with attention.
Coelum. - November is usually a very gloomy month, yet there are some intervals of clear and pleasant weather: the mornings are generally sharp, but the boar frost is soon dissipated by the Sun giving a rich tinge to the autumnal colouring of the decaying foliage, and affording a fine open day. At other times, November days are involved in dense fogs.
Chills, with dense fogs, the cheerless, tardy Morne,
Pours the loud urne on the expiring yeare. It is said there are more cases of suicide in November than in any other month of the year, owing to depression of spirits and ennui, caused by the first setting in of gloomy weather; but we believe the proportion of suicides is greatly exaggerated, and that this malady is, in fact, a real disease of the brain, and occurs at all times of the year.
Pomona. - The last and latest sorts of our Apples and Pears are gathered and laid up in the loft at this time; most sorts being already reposed there to complete the process of ripening.
November 5. St. Bertille of Soissons Abbess.
St. Bertille was born of an illustrious family near Soissons, in the reign of Dagobert the First. Her life will be found in Butler, xi. 130. She died in 692.
O rises at vit. 18'. and sets at iv. 42'. Powder Plot.-- This day is kept to commemorate the attempt of certain miscreants to blow up the Parliament House. The fullest account of this at best but very doubtful transaction is detailed in Hume's History of England.
It is still customary in London and its vicinity for the boys to dress up an image of the conspirator Guy Fawkes holding in one hand a dark lanthorn and in the other a bundle of matches, and to carry it about the streets, begging money in these words,“ Pray remember Guy Fawkes !” In the evening there are bonfires, and these frightful figures are brent in the midst of them. The reports of guns and cannons, and the minor explosions of gunpowder, are now to be heard in all directions, amidst the merry ringing of bells.
In Poor Robin's Almanack for the year 1677, are the following lines on the fifth of November :
Now boys with squibs and crackers play,
And bonfires' blaze turns night to day. We remember the following verse vociferated by the Bonfire Boys on this day in the village of Walthamstow in Essex, from our earliest childhood :
Remember, remember, the fifth of November,
Gunpowder Treason and Plot,
Should ever be forgot ;
And pray remember the Bonfire.
Among the many splendid pyrotechnical exhibitions that have taken place on this night, may be recorded the grand display of Fireworks at Walthamstow in Essex, in 1783. They were chiefly made by some private gentlemen not much skilled in the art before ; but, for brilliancy and variety of fire, they will be remembered as long as any of the then existing inhabitants of the village shall survive.
CHRONOLOGY.—The name of Zacchaeria occurs today in some Martyrologies; but the Greeks celebrate himn in September.
NONAE. Neptunalia.-Rom. Cal. We have treated of Neptune and his festivals on July the 28th, at which time they stand recorded in the Calendar, and we shall also mention them under December 3d, to both which we beg to refer. At present we shall subjoin, for the reader's entertainment, an account of a curious ceremony performed in Ships crossing the Aequator, and which represents Neptune boarding the vessel. It was obligingly communicated to us by Captain Edward Hall, R. N. An Account of Neptune's boarding Vessels crossing the Equator,
&c. &c., communicated by Captain Hall, R. N. October 30, 1823.
" The following is an account of the custom of shaving at the tub by Neptune, as practised on board vessels crossing the Equator, Tropics, and Europa Point. The origin of it is supposed to be very ancient, and it is commonly followed on board Foreign, as well as British Ships. Europa Point at Gibraltar being one of the places, it may have arisen at the time when that was considered the western boundary of Terra Firma.
“On the departure of a vessel from England by either of the aforesaid routes, much ingenuity is exerted by the old seamen and their confederates to discover the uninitiated, and it is seldom that any escape detection; a few days previous to arriving at the scene of action, much mystery and reserve is observed among the ship's company: they are then secretly collecting stale soapsuds, water, &c., arranging the dramatis personae, and preparing matériel. At this time, also, the novices, who are aware of what is going forward, send their forfeits to the captain of the forecastle, who acts as Neptune's deputy; the forfeit is either a bottle of rum, or a dollar: and I never knew it refused, except from a cook's mate who had acted negligently, and from a steward's mate who was inclined to trick the people when serving provisions.
“On board of a Man of War it is generally performed on a grand scale. I have witnessed it several times, but the best executed was on board a Ship of the Line of which I was lieutenant, bound to the West Indies. On crossing the Tropic, a voice, as if at a distance, and from the surface of the water, “ Ho, the Ship ahoy! I shall come on board :" this was from a person slung over the bows, near the water, speaking through his hands. Presently two men of large stature came over the bows; they had hideous masks on: one personated Neptune - he was naked to his middle, crowned with the head of a huge wet swab, the ends of which reached to his loins to represent flowing locks; a piece of tarpaulin vandyked encircled the head of the swab and his brows as a diadem; his right hand wielded a boarding pike manufactured into a trident, and his body was marked with red ochre to represent fish scales: the other personated Amphitrite, having locks also formed of swabs, a petticoat of the same material, with a girdle of red bunten ; and in her hands a comb and lookingglass. They were followed by about twenty fellows, also naked to their middle, with red ochre scales as Tritons. They were received on the forecastle with much respect by the old sailors, who had provided the carriage of an eighteen pounder as a car, which their majesties ascended, and were drawn aft along the gangway to the quarter deck by the Tritons; when Neptune, addressing the captain, said he was happy to see him again that way, that he believed there were some Johnny Raws on board that had not paid their dues, and who he intended to initiate into the Salt Water Mysteries. The Captain answered, he was happy to see him, but requested he would make no more confusion than was necessary. They then descended on the main