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hoar-frost.” He also observed to them, that if they had been in the king's palace, they would not have seen there so beautiful a sight as the trees and plants had afforded them that morning. “So that, you see, all the wealth that a king can command will not be able to create a more beautiful prospect than one hoar-frost will produce. And I assure you, that all the gold in the world would not make the king so happy as you have been to-day. You must not suppose that people are happy because they are rich. Many of those gaily-dressed folks that you see in handsome carriages are very wretched. And the reason is, because they are envious and discontented. You may depend upon it that no person can be very unhappy who is of a contented disposition; and a rich discontented one, is a burthen to himself, and hateful to every one who knows hin Now you may play for an hour, and then go to your lessons. Adam shall try to saw some logs for the fires."
At night, Adam read aloud the history of all the animals that sleep during the winter : such as the bear, the marmot, the sleeping rat found in the Alps, the bat, the snake, the frog, the tortoise, the dormouse, and several others, the names of which I do not immediately recollect: and his mamma showed him, upon the map of the world, the different countries in which those animals live.
This frosty and snowy weather continued for some days longer, and Adam had the pleasure of seeing a flock of wild geese and some wild ducks fly over their garden ; and a black-bird used to come every morning to the parlor window at breakfast-time to be fed with crumbs from the table. Some redbreasts were their constant companions; and one became so familiar,
THE BAROMETER.-A THAW.
that upon the window being opened, it would fly into the room. One evening, while they were all at their books, they heard the wind rise, and after some minutes, a little sound of rain against the windows. “The weather is changing,” said Mr. Stock; and upon looking at the barometer, he found that the quicksilver had fallen considerably. Adam wished to know how it was that the changing of the weather should make the glass rise or fall. His father told him that, if he were to explain it, he could not understand him. “When you are a little older you shall read a book which will make it clear to you. You must be contented at present with merely knowing that it is the state of the air, or the atmosphere, as it is called, which makes the quicksilver sink and rise in the glass tube. When the weather is moist or rainy, the air is light, and the quicksilver falls down; and in fine dry weather, then the air is heavy, and the quicksilver rises. Now, all skip up to bed. Good night !"
On the following morning they found that the snow was almost gone; and upon going into the air, they observed how very warm it felt. In some parts of the garden, and under the hedges in the fields which faced the north, there still remained small patches of snow, which no longer appeared of that beautifully dazzling whiteness, but was smeared with dirt, and full of little holes, that gave it the appearance of being sprinkled with soot. The ground was broken, as the country people call it; and it was almost impossible to walk, from the weight of mud which clung to their shoes. After a few days, the worms and grubs which had lain snug under the hard earth crept forth to the warm air, and afforded a welcome meal to the little birds, which, while the frost lasted, had been pinched with hunger.
“If this mild weather should continue,” said Mr. Stock, “I must prune the apple and pear trees; the currant and gooseberries: and when I have finished those I shall attend to the vines. You are not gardener enough yet, Adam, to think of beginning to prune, but if you are very attentive to what I tell you, and observe how I do it, you shall next year try your skill upon some old currant and gooseberry trees. Now, take your knife, and carefully scrape off the moss from this espalier,* and then go on to the next, till you have finished them all. In two or three days I make no doubt that we shall have plenty of pretty and cheerful little flowers; among them, the daisy, bear’s-foot, spurry, chickweed, &c.; and you, and your brothers and sisters, shall go out and gather them under the hedges. In our garden the hazel-trees will be preparing to flower; the honey-suckle pushing its pale-green buds into leaf; and among flowers, we may expect to see crocuses, both yellow and purple, the yellow ones bearing the grand name of 'Cloth of Gold.' Then there will be also the rosemary,
the yellow aconite, and the Alpine alysson, the polyanthus, the wall-flower, the anemone, the cyclamen, hellebore, navelwort, periwinkle, your dear little favorite-the primrose; the name means, the rose of the spring, or the first rose, from the Latin word primus, which, you know, means first. And the delicate modest-looking snow-drop, which hangs down its head, and seems too tender to endure the cold season. So, what with our flowers and flowering shrubs; the laurustinus, that cheerful and lovely flower; the arbutus, than which no
"Espaliers,” trees planted in rows about a garden, and trained regu. sarly by being fastened to a lattice of wood-work, so as to form a kind of hedge.--Eds.
FLOWERS OF JANUARY.
thing can be more elegant, both in the shape of the plant, and in its leaves and blossoms; the alaternus, brought into this country by a great and worthy man-Evelyn, whose book on the subject of Gardening you shall read when you are older; then there is the spurge-laurel, the Glastonbury thorn, the mezereon, the cornelian cherry, and the finely-varnished holly, with its red coral; -I say, what with our berries, flowers, and shrubs, the bare and wintry month of JANUARY, to a cheerful and happy mind, becomes a season of pleasantness.”
" Muttering, the winds at eve, with blunted point,
Blow hollow blustering from the south. Subdued,
THE month of FEBRUARY had now set in; and the frost appeared to be quite gone, although there were patches of snow still remaining, under those hedges which sheltered it from the noonday sun: the roads were deep in mud, and the garden ground was soft; the wind was blustering, and the weather altogether very unpleasant; for the rain which came from time to time was cold, and now and then, being mingled with small snow, rendered it extremely disagreeable to be out: but when there was any work to be performed, Mr. Stock would not allow the weather to drevent him; and he brought up Adam to care for it as ittle as he did himself. If he was wet in his feet, or in any part of his dress, when he had finished his work, he never failed to change it; and Adam did so too, who thought it was being like a man to keep at his work when it rained, and not to be sent in doors; so at first he fancied thai he liked rainy weather better than