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vitally important as it is, says the writer, was notice, a force of this description equal if not supeannually disregarded and postponed —
rior to any that could be brought against us." “It was not until the danger of a sudden rup “It will be seen, by what I have said, that I am ture with France on the Tahiti question, in 1844, not disposed fully to coincide in opinion with those had at last awakened us from our dreams of delu- who entertain what appear to me somewhat exagsive security, that we, for the first time, opened gerated fears with regard to the existing dangers our eyes to the peril from which we had so provi- of the country, and who seem to assume that our dentially escaped.
naval superiority can no longer avail us ; but I am “ It soon became perfectly well known that the prepared to admit that we are far more exposed to French government had contemplated a sudden a surprise than at any preceding period of our attack on Portsmouth and Plymouth, with a force modern history; and that if our military preparaassembled at Cherbourg, and consisting chiefly of tions are not matured on the scale which the occasteamers; of which they could have collected sion so manifestly requires, it is perfectly possible towards forty of all classes, capable of conveying that an active and enterprising enemy might avail troops for so short a distance ; while our whole himself of some favorable opportunity for suddenly naval force, then within reach, consisted of three throwing a large body of men on our shores, and heavy sailing three-deckers, fitted out for summer inflicting on us some grievous and disgraceful exercise, and we had not at that moment a single injury, before we were prepared to repel him." frigate or smaller vessel, and scarcely a steamer “ W. B." calls to mind that our allies have of force, in any of our home ports ready for sea. claims upon usOur land defences had been equally neglected. “ It may not, perhaps, be generally known that Very few guns were mounted in the batteries at our supineness in this respect has excited equal either port; and there was certainly every reason uneasiness and dissatisfaction in Germany, where to believe that an attack conducted with vigor and such great exertions have been made, and such decision might have been completely successful ; heavy expenses submitted to, for the purpose of resulting in the destruction of one if not more of strengthening their own frontier ; and it has been our great naval arsenals, with all its contents, at said (certainly not without foundation) that our the commencement of hostilities !
own negligence of similar precautions would, in all Happily for us, we were spared this national probability, be the cause of the next general war, disgrace and humiliation. After a short period by bolding out a temptation too strong for France of most intense anxiety to those aware of our weak- to resist at some favorable moment." ness, we gladly accepted such satisfaction as the French government could be induced to offer ; the
WARLIKE PREPARATIONS IN FRANCE. danger passed away, without any general feeling or alarm having been excited ; and the attention of the government became so exclusively directed
6th January, 1848. towards domestic occurrences, that although sev Sir—The moderate and judicious tone adopted eral measures of importance were soon afterwards by the Spectator on the subject of the defence of adopted for the better defence of our naval arsenals, the country, is worthy of the spirit in which that (in compliance with the suggestions of a commis- journal has always been conducted. sion appointed in 1845 to inspect and report on this I venture now to address you with respect to a subject,) they have since been carried into execu- paragraph in your last article. You say—“When tion so tardily, that, out of a force of large steam- he (the Prince de Joinville) pointed out that a guard ships for the special defence of our ports, French commander could now appoint the very ordered to be equipped in 1846, consisting of six hour for landing his troops independently of wind sail of the line and six frigates, only one is now and tide, he warned us more than he roused his ready for service, and the remainder will scarcely countrymen, for it is not understood that the be 80 before the end of the year. This delay is prince's counsels have been adopted.” deeply to be regretted, because no plan could have I fear the fact is the reverse of this statement. been devised better calculated to defeat any sudden If England had taken any warning, could the Duke attack than that of having in constant readiness a of Wellington's letter have been written nearly formidable squadron of this description, propelled three years afterwards ? When the French prince by steam as well as sails, and far superior in point wrote, the duke had already stated before a comof force to any flotilla of French steamers which mittee of the house of commons—“In case of might attempt a descent on our coast."
war, I should consider that the want of protection Much has since been done to advance the and refuge which now exists would leave the defences : Sheerness has been so strengthened as commerce of that part of the coast, and the coast to be secure against a coup de main ; progress has itself, in a very precarious condition.” been made in equipping a respectable squadron for
Prince de Joinville, after quoting this passage, home service ; our steam navy has been increased ; exclaims—“ These cries of alarm in the bosom of the steam basins and factories at Portsmouth and the English parliament ought to have a salutary Devenport approach completion ; and if a large echo in our chambers, and throughout France : portion of the steam-ships were kept at home, we our line of conduct is traced by the hand of our should “be able to assemble, at the shortest neighbors themselves.”
TO THE EDITOR OF THE SPECTATOR.
He then proceeds to develop his plans ; pointing | unprotected by the larger fish, nay, sometimes even put the measures to be pursued in war, and how preyed upon by their own progenitors. This we England may“ be struck to the heart.” For this might be apt to think extreme indifference, and an object he urges France to provide herself as quickly but a little reflection will show that it is a wise
outrage on the great law of paternal endearment; as possible with a powerful force of frigates and adjustment of nature. In such an unstable element steam-vessels.
as water, continually agitated by currents, and It is a great mistake to suppose he has failed to incessantly changing its place, it would have been arouse his countrymen. I have before me a copy impossible for a parent fish to have kept its young of his pamphlet, published in France at 4d.; and family around it, or even, if it so could, to have in this and other shapes it has had a universal afforded them any protection. Think, too, of a circulation in France.
codfish surrounded by several millions of its young
the offspring of one single season! Or of an immense It appeared in 1844 ; and in 1846, in addition to shoal of herrings, with each parent taking charge the ordinary estimates, nearly 4,000,0001. sterling of its two or three millions of young, and distinguishwere voted, without a dissentient voice, to create a ing each among the surrounding myriads! The new force of ninety-three steam and other frigates salmon comes into fresh-water rivers to deposit its
-precisely the very force so urgently recom- spawn high up the stream; but its nature requires mended in the pamphlet.
that it should return to the ocean again long before
its young are able to travel : and the same remark This vote was to be spread over the period of applies to many migratory fishes, which leave the seven years, an equal portion of it to be expended deep waters-their usual haunt—and come for a in each ; but in January, 1847, the minister of short space to the shallows to spawn. marine proposed that the ships should be prepared Yet fishes, obedient to the great law of nature, without the least delay, and the term of seven show much solicitude about selecting the proper years altogether disregarded; which was also place for their spawn and future young. Every unanimously approved.
year the herring in countless shoals makes a long These events sufficiently show that he did not north to our shallow bays and firths; and the salmon
journey, it is supposed, from the deep seas of the fail to arouse his countrymen ; and if we hear leaves the sea, toils up the current of the river with nothing on the subject now, it is because French- incredible perseverance and force, overleaping the men know that the success of their onslaught must falls and rapids till it gains the smooth and shallow be in proportion to the degree in which we have source where, amid the sand, the spawn is deposited, failed to take warning. How universal this feel- and where the future young may sport in safety ing is, may be judged by the silence of the most
amid the sunny rills, till they gain sufficient strength
to swim down the stream. Some fishes, however, opposite parties on the stirring letters we have really make a kind of nest in the water, and recently read. This is their sole point of union; assiduously tend their ova till they are hatched. and France as one man would rise against the This is the case with the stickleback, which contraitor who should publish a word, in the present structs a nest made of pieces of grass and straw fixed stage of affairs, that might tend further to open among the pebbles of ihe stream which they inhabit. our eyes.
We have often been warned, but in M. Coste procured some of these fishes, and putting vain ; and France confidently believes we shall them into basins filled with water, and the propei
materials of their nests, watched their progress. soon relapse into slamber.
A minute and very curious detail of which he lately submitted to the Academy of Sciences of Paris
The sticklebacks having selected a proper spot, set THE NESTS OF FISHES.
about constructing their nests. “I saw,” says he, Almost all the higher classes of animals assiduous-"each of the males that was engaged in this work ly perform the duties of parents to their young. They heap up in the place the selected pieces of grass of nurse, and feed, and protect them till they are able to every kind, which he often brought from a great provide for themselves. But many of the inferior ani- distance, seizing them with his mouth; and of these mals, on the other hand, never know or care for their he began to form a kind of carpet. But as the offspring. Not a few of them, indeed, as the insect materials which form the first part of his edifice tribe, bestow great pains in constructing nests for the might be carried away by the movements or oscillation eggs of their future young, and even provide and of the water, he had the precaution to bring some store up the food necessary for them; but here all sand, with which he filled his mouth, and deposited their solicitude ends; and in many instances the it on the nest, in order to keep it in its place. Then, parents are dead before their young come into exis- in order to make all the substances thus brought tence. Aquatic animals exhibit what, on a casual | together adhere to each other, he pressed his body view, would appear great carelessness in this respect. against them, sliding slowly as if by a kind of Fish deposit their spawn almost at random, and leave vibratory creeping, and in this way glued them their ova to be hatched by the elements, and their together by meany of the mucus which exudes from young to provide for themselves. They form no his skin. By this operation the first collected nest, or a very rude one—the sand of the sea-shore, materials form a kind of foundation or solid foor, the small pebbles of the river or lake, or leaves of on which the rest of the edifice is to be reared. The plants, or sea-weeds, receive their minute eggs. execution of this he continues with a feverish perseThese are hurriedly and rudely covered up, if deposit- verance and agitation. In order to satisfy himself ed in furrows of the sand, or they adhere to stones that all the parts are sufficiently united, he agitates or weeds by means of a gluey mucilage by which his pectoral fins with great rapidity, in such a manthey are enveloped. When the young fry are ver as to produce currents directed against the nest ; developed, they associate together in shoals, and and if he notice that the pieces of grass are moved, Toam about amid the shallow waters untended and he presses them down with his snout, heaps sand
upon them, flattens them, and glues them together!
From Jerrold's Magazine again. When the process has reached this point,
SKETCHES FROM A PAINTER'S STUDIO. he chooses more solid materials-he seizes small pieces of wood or straws in his mouth, and presses
A TALE OF TO-DAY. them into the thick places, or on the surface of the first construction. If he finds, when attempting to
A BROAD stream, smooth with deep-grassed fields, introduce them, that the position does not sufficiently
Through rushy turnings winding slow
A dam where stirless waters sleep, answer the purpose, he draws them out again,
Till shot on the mossed wheel belowseizes them at another part, again inserts them, and pushes them forwards, until he ascertains that he
A dusty mill, whose shadows fall has made the best possible use of them. Occasion
On the stayed waters, white o'er all. ally, however, in spite of all his care, there are por A vine-climbed cottage, redly-tiled, tions which, owing to their shape, will not conform Deep-nooked within an orchard's green, to the general plan. These he draws out, carries Past which a white road winds away to a distance, and abandons, and proceeds to select That hedgerow elms from summer screen others. When he has succeeded in building the A busy wheel's near sound that tells floor and side walls, he then undertakes the roof,
Within the thriving miller dwells. which is constructed of the same materials, carefully glued and compacted together by the same vibratory A cottage parlor neatly gay pressure of his body. Meanwhile he takes care to
With little comforts brightened round, secure an opening in the ceatre of the nest, by re
Where simple ornaments that speak peatedly thrusting in his head and the greater part
Of more than country taste abound; of his body.” The nest being thus finished, the
Where bookcase and piano well male, which is distinguished by his vivid coloring, Of more than village polish tell. darts out and invites a female to deposit her eggs in the place which he has just prepared for their recep
A bluff, blunt miller, well to do, tion. The female enters, and having deposited her
Of broad, loud laugh—not hard to please ova in the cavity, darts out at the opposite side at
A kindly housewife, keen and sage, which she entered, and thus makes an open passage
And busy as her very beesthrough both sides of the nest. Several females in
A bright-eyed daughter-mirth and health succession are thus invited to deposit their spawn;
their wealth above all wealth. and thus the nest becomes a rich magazine of ova. A tripping, fair, light-hearted girl, The male now becomes the sole guardian of this Nor yet the ripened woman quite, deposit; for not only do the females take no care of Whose cheerful mirth and thoughtful love it, but they become its formidable enemies—forming Light up the cottage with delight, part of those numerous coalitions which attempt to And with a thousand gentle ways plunder it, and satisfy their voracious appetite by With pleasure brim her parents' days. devouring the ova. In his defensive exertions no obstacle can divert him, or daunt his courage during
A titled slip of lordly blood, the whole month requisite for the development of
A few weeks' lounger at the hall, the ova. In order to strengthen the nest, he now To gain new zests for palled delights covers it with stones, the size of which is sometimes
And squandered waste of health recallequal to half his body, and which he moves along
An angler in the mill-dam's waterwith great labor. In this process he always
A chatter with the miller's daughter. reserves one or more openings, through which he
A meeting 'neath a summer's nightoften drives currents of water by the rapid motion Soft smiles, low words, impassioned sighs of his fins—these currents seem to be necessary in
The trembling clasp of meeting hands clearing away objects from the eggs, for if not thus
The hot gaze met with downcast eyescleansed, they are found all to perish. It is wonder
Foul perjuries that pollute the air ful to see with what courage he beats away suc
With burning hopes and doubts heard there. cessive numbers of his foes, striking them with his snout, and erecting his long sharp spines. Some A thin, pale face, where autumn sees times, when about to be overpowered with numbers, No more the smiles that lit the springhe resorts to statagem, and darts suddenly out of A foot less light upon the stairhis nest, as if in pursuit of some prey. This fre
A low voice heard no more to singquently deceives the attacking sticklebacks, and
One now that lost to all things sits, they rush after him, in hopes of sharing the prey;
Now starts to overmirth by fits. and thus they are decoyed from the nest. As the
Dear tongues that ask a gasping girl period of hatching draws to a close, his assiduity
Of what to utter were to kill — increases : he removes the stones to give more easy
Looks that she feels upon her fixedaccess to the water, enlarges the openings, increases
Eyes that with tears pursue her stillthe frequency of the currents, and moves the eggs
Care in the old accustomed place nearer the surface, or carries them deeper, accord
Of mirth upon her father's face. ing as circumstances require. Finally, when the eggs are hatched, he still continues to watch over A dark, small, whitely-curtained roomthe
young in his nest, and does not allow them to A form flung on the unopened bedgo at liberty till they have become sufficiently active Quick sobs that quiver through the gloomto provide the means of their own preservation. Tears rained from hot eyes, swoln and redChambers' Journal.
And words that through their wild despair
Across the landing-down the stairs an against the Danish government and in support of That scarce a creak a step reveals
the “ German principle," the authorities of DenA stifled sob-a bolt undrawn
mark took measures to silence him. It appears A form—low words-a daughter gone. that every lawyer must be commissioned by the A fresh-turfed, narrow, hoop-bound grave
government, and no commissioned officer can sit as
a representative in the diet without the permission Heaping a country churchyard's green,
of the government. Under this law M. Bessler On whose white headstone, newly carved, The mill's old master's name is seen
was required either to give up his commissioned
business as a lawyer or relinquish his seat in the The wayside mill's, that bears no more
diet. M. Bessler chose the alternative of sacriThe well-known name so long it bore.
ficing his business ; an intention which he made A stooping woman, scarcely old,
public in a sort of manifesto. The appearance of Yet with the feeble walk of age,
this document caused the greatest excitement; and The dull, faint sense of whose blank mind,
forthwith committees were formed in the different No thing around her can engage;
towns in the two duchies to raise subscriptions for Yet who, when into speech beguiled,
the martyr. Gradually the feeling spread to HanWill mutter of some absent child.
over, Prussia, Bavaria, Baden, and Wurtemburg ;
and the result is likely to be, that instead of his A costly-furnished, west-end room,
former income of about two hundred a year, M. Whose mirrors-pictures—all things show Bessler will receive a clear fortune of several hunA stintless and abounding wealth
dred thousand thalers. An easeful luxury few can knowA flaunting thing its glare within,
A MANUFACTURER of silks, having received from A thing of shame, remorse, and sin.
his dyer a large quantity of goods in a spotty con
dition, threatened him with an action, upless he was A noise of quarrel-keen reproach,
compensated for the loss he was likely to sustain, Fronted with taunt-loud oath and curse
owing, as it appeared, to the dyer's carelessness. Heaped out with such vile store of scorn
This being resisted, chemists were employed to As hate in vain might seek for worse
detect the causes of the accident; but they were at Meek pleadings stricken to a close
fault, until, at length, one gentleman to whom the With, shame to manhood, brutal blows.
damaged silk had been committed for analysis, A thing that once was woman-white, thought of submitting it to microscopic examination Thin, haggard, hollow-eyed and wan by an eminent naturalist; who at once discovered A horror that the shuddering eye
that the spots were owing to a peculiar fungus, Starts back aghast from resting on;
having all the characters of that variety which was Whose only joy now left is drink,
detected in the potato-disease. The result was, the Whose fire burns out the power to think.
discovery that all the damage had been effected by
the manufacturer and not the dyer; he having emA bridge all winter—keen with gusts,
ployed in the process of manufacture a starch size On whose cold pathways lies the night which had been prepared from diseased potatoes.Stony, and desolate, and dark,
On the 1st of August last, there were 25,000 That numb each houseless wretch they meet. English residing at Paris and in the environs ; at
Boulogne there were 7,000, and at Calais 4,000; A wintry river, broad and black,
25,000 resided in other parts of France. Their That through dark arches slides along,
expenditure is reckoned altogether at 5,000,0001. Ringed where the gas-lights on it play With coiling eddies swirling strong, That far below the dizzy height
NEW BOOKS. Of the dark bridge swim through the night.
From Messrs. Harpers. A crouching form that through the gloom Adventures in Mexico and the Rocky Mountains. Paces its stones a hundred times,
By G. F. Ruxton.-We have glanced over this That, pausing, glancing keenly round, new book on Mexico and the Indian country, and The dark, high balustrade upclimbs
find it brim-full of humor, spirit and wild incident. A plunge—a shriek—from all its woes It exhibits the Mexicans in the most deplorable and A weary soul hath calm repose.
imbecile condition ; especially does the writer in
dulge his sarcasm at the expense of ex-presiden A long, bright suite of stately rooms,
Santa Anna, and his miserable recruits. The book Where, to soft music's changeful swell,
Mabounds with spirited sketches of the wild sports Keeps time the beat of falling feet, And all things but of pleasure tell,
of the prairies, accounts of the trappers and the
Santa Fe traders, &c.—Jour. of Commerce.
Pictorial History of England, Nos. 38 and 39.
Nearly completed. We recommend this book to public and private libraries everywhere.
Lamartine's History of the Girondists, vol. 2. Accounts from the north of Germany mention the rise of a German O'Connell. It appears that
Life of the Chevalier Bayard, by W. G. SIMMs. M. Bessler, a lawyer, was elected three years ago to represent his native town of Tondren in the Sles Chambers' Miscellany is regularly issued by wig Diet, by whom he was elected to the office of Messrs. Gould, Kendall & Lincoln. president. Having in that capacity spoken strongly Dombey f Son, by Messrs. Bradbury & Guild.
1. Don John of Austria,
337 2. Animal Instincts,
345 3. Preservation of Food,
355 4. Russian War in the Caucasus,
United Service Magazine,
360 5. President Polk and the Mexican War, Examiner,
366 6. The Irrational Defences ; Comments on the
Duke's Letter (the Letter is at 377); The
367 POETRY. — Abd el Kader at Toulon, 365 - Sketches from a Painter's Studio, 382. SHORT ARTICLES. - Fire Locks and Free Trade, 365 - The Year 1848, 371 - British
Revenue ; Louis Philippe and James K. Polk, 372 — Speech of the French King, &c.,
PROSPECTUS.—This work is conducted in the spirit of now becomes every intelligent American to be informed Littell's Museum of Foreign Literature, (which was favor of the condition and changes of foreign countries. And ably received by the public for twenty years,) but as it is this not only because of their nearer connection with our twice as large, and appears so often, we not only give selves, but because the nations seem to be hastening, spirit and freshness to ii by many things which were ex- tbrough a rapid process of change, to some new state of cluded by a month's delay, but while thus extending our things, which the merely political prophet cannot compute scope and gathering a greater and more attractive variety, or foresee. are able so to increase the solid and substantial part of Geographical Discoveries, the progress of Colonization, our literary, historical, and political harvest, as fully to (which is extending over the whole world,) and Voyages satisfy the wants of the American reader,
and Travels, will be favorite matter for our selections ; The elaborate and stately Essays of the Edinburgh, and, in general, we shall systematically and very ully Quarterly, and other Reviews , and Blackwood's noble acquaint our readers with the great department of Foreign criticisms on Poetry, his kee: political Commentaries, affairs, without entirely neglecting our own. highly wrought Tales, and vivid descriptions of rural and While we aspire to make the Living Age desirahle to mountain Scenery ; and the contributions to Literature, all who wish to keep themselves informed of the rapid History, and Common Life, by the sagacious Spectator, progress of the movement—10 Statesmen, Divines, Law. the sparkling Examiner, ihe judicious Atheneum, the yers, and Physicians—to nien of business and men of busy and industrious Literary Gazelte, the sensible and leisure—it is still a stronger object to make it attractive comprehensive Brilannia, the sober and respectable Chris- and useful to their Wives and Children. We believe that tian Observer; these are intermixed with the Military we can thus do some good in our day and generation ; aud and Naval reminiscences of the United Service, and with hope to make the work indispensable in every well-inthe best articles of the Dublin University, Nero Monthly, formed family: We say indispensable, because in this Fraser's, Tait's, Ainsworth's, Hood's, and Sporting Mag- day of cheap literature it is not possible to guard against azines, and of Chambers' admirable Journal. We do not the influx of what is bad in taste and vicious in morals, consider it beneath our dignity to borrow wit and wisdom in any other way than by furnishing a sufficient supply from Punch; and, when we think it good enough, make of a healthy character. The mental and moral aj petite use of the thunder of The Times. We shall increase our must be gratified. variety by importations from the continent of Europe, and We hope that, by "winnowing the wheat from the from ihe new growth of the British colonies.
chaff" by providing abundantly for the imagination, a d The steamship has brought Europe, Asia, and Africa, by a large collection of Biography, Voyages and Travels, into our neighborhood ; and will greatly multiply our con: History, and more solid matter, we may produce a work Dections, as Merchants, Travellers, and Politicians, with which shall be popular, while at the same time it will all parts of the world ; so that much more than ever it | aspire to raise the standard of public taste.
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WASHINGTON, 27 Dec., 1845. Of all the Periodical Journals devoted to literature and science which abound in Europe and in this country, this has appeared to me to be the most useful. It contains indeed the exposition only of the current literature of the English language, but this by its immense extent and comprehension includes a portraiture of the human mind in the utmost expansion of the present age.
J. Q. ADAMS.