« AnteriorContinua »
Live in solitary holes by themselves, and are called Hermits : whether these have been crossed in their affections, or are in a state of widowhood, or whether they have for some crime been banished from their colony, is unknown; but as they are all distinguished by a black mark, called a saddle, upon their backs, it should rather seem, they are somewhat different in their species.
They bring forth their young towards the end of June, and generally have two at a time, which are, nine times out of ten, a male and a female. These continue with their parents till they are full three years old; when they pair off, and form houses for themselves. If, however, they are undisturbed, and bave plenty of provisions, they remain with the old ones, and thus foron a double society.
We cannot wonder that such sociable animals as the Beavers are, should also exbibit great attachment to each other. Two young ones that were taken alive, and brought to a neighbouring factory in Hudson's Bay, were preserved for some time, and throve very fast, till one of them was killed by an accident. The survivor instantly felt the loss, and abstained from food till it died.
Instances have occurred of Beavers having been perfectly domesticated. Major Roderfort, of New York, related to Professor Kalm, that he had a tame Beaver above half a year in his house, where he went about, quite loose, like a dog. The Major gave hinn bread, and sometimes fish, of which he was very greedy.
As much water was put into a bowl as he wanted. All the rags and soft things he could meet with, he dragged into the corner where he was accustomed to sleep, and inade a bed of them. The cat in the house, having kittens, took possession of his bed; and he did not attempt to prevent her. When the cat went out, the Beaver often took the kitten that was preserved, between his fore-paws, and held it to his breast to warn it, and seemed to doat upon it. As soon as the cat returned, he always gave her the kitten again. Sometimes he grumbled; but never did any harın, nor attempted to bite.
Similar instances of attachment, apparently unnatural, have been often observed among the brute creation; but the principal circumstance which seems to render this account doubtful is, Captain Cartwright asserts, the Beaver will not eat either fish or any animal food. The contrary has been asserted, however, by Buffon; and perhaps both assertions may be founded in fact, as it relates to different species, or in different circumstanees, It is even possible, that a domesticated animal may be taught to love food, for which, in its wild state, it had no relishi.
Such instances of extraordinary friendship and affection among different species of the brute creation, should at least teach us humanity and gentleness to them. “A merciful man is inerciful to his beast.” And cruelty is so far from being compatible with Christianity, that it sinks a man below the dignity of his species; yea, there is no animal in the creation that is so brutish.
I would only add, that the Beaver is also a most useful creature. Its skin is so important an article of commerce, that the hunting of it is a profession; and the Hudson Bay company have sold above 50,000 skins at one sale. Its flesh is esteemed good for food; and besides, the inguinal glands of these animals generally produce two ounces of castor, a medicinal substance, the value of which is well known. And does not Providence, in making the creatures thus valuable to us, teach us how we should make ourselves valuable to each otlier? Man is estimated in society as he makes himself useful by industry, economy, and benevolence : a Christian is most valuable, who, in addition to these virtues, studies the good of all around him, and is, like Abraham, an advocate with God for the salvation of mankind.
1. Or' THE LATE REV. MR. HERVEY. In the parish where Mr. Hervey preached, when of Arminian sentiments, there resided a Ploughman, who usually attended the ministry of the laté Dr. Duddridge. Mr. Hervey being advised by his physician, for the benefit of his health, to follow the plough, in order to smell the fresh earth, frequently accompanied the ploughman in his rural avocation. One morning the following conversation passed :
Mr. llerrey. My friend, I understand you can speak the language of Canaan.
Ploughman. A little, Sir.
Mr. H. Then I will propose you a question :- What do you think is the hardest thing in religion?
Plough. I am a poor illiterate man, and you, Sir, are a winister; — I beg leave to return the question.
Mr. H. Then, I conceive the hardest thing in religion is, to renounce sinful flesh.
Plough. I do not think so, Sir.
Plough. Why, Sir, the hardest thing in religion is, to deny righteous self. You know I do not come to hear you preachi'; but go every Sabbath with my family to Northampton, to hear Dr. Boddridge. We rise early in the morning, and have prayer before we set out; in which I find pleasure. Walking there and back, I find pleasure ;-under the serinon I find pleasure ; - when at the Lord's Table, I find pleasure ; -- we read a portion of Scripture, and go to prayer in the evening, in which
sure but to this
n. 1... el. i.decethin
The simple recital of the poor man so affected Mr. Hervey, that it proved a blessing to bis soul; and the ploughman henceforth became his bosom friend.
OF THE LATE REV. MR. BERRIDGE. SIR,
To the Editor. READING in your Magazine for October last, p. 405, the anecdote of Mr. Berridge wiping his spectacles, it brings to my mind a saying of that good man in the Tabernacle-pulpit. I think (if I remember right) about the year 1791, being just arrived froin his vicarage at Everton, in Bedfordshire; and being led up the pulpit-stairs one evening after the minister had prayed, he addressed the audience nearly as follows :-“My dear Tabernaele friends” (the tears trickling down his cheeks) “ I bless my dear Lord that has thus far brought me on my wearisome pilgrimage through the wilderness, and has permitted his old wornout servant to see your siate in the flesh once more, which, in all probability, will be the last time. Satan said to me, as I was coming, — “ You old fool, how can you think of preaching to that great people, that have neither strength nor memory left?" I said to him, "Well, Satan, I have got a good Master, that has not forsook me these forty years, and in his strength I'll try; aud, blessed be his name, he has thus far helped me; and if you'll pray, I'll try to preach once more in my poor way: and may the Lord make it a blessed opportunity to us all! and I think you'll say Ainen to it.” À CONSTANT READER.
III. OF THE LATE LORD LYTTLETON. The celebrated Lord Lyttleton said to his Physician, in his last illness, “ When I first set out in the world, I had friends who endeavoured to stayver my belief in the Christian religion ; but I kept my mind open to conviction. The evidences and doctrines of Christianity, studied with attention, made me a most firın and persuaded believer of the Christian religion. I have made it the rule of my life ; and it is the ground of my future hopes.”
A professor of many years standing, lately asserted, that for children (or adults) to sing hymns and spiritual songs, unless their hearts experienced the words sung, was absolutely profane, and a solemu mockery of God: Gulielmus therefore inquires, if this principle be admitted,-1. Must it not be equally criminal for tliein to read hymns, and other religious books, or even the Bible, without experiencing what they read? and if so,--2. What must children and others be encouraged to read for their instruge
Is this Jerusalem ? the city of God, where Jehovah himself once dwelt! What sorrow's have encompassed thee about! Into what a dreadful pit art thou fallen! A city, once the glory of the east; the city where God manifested his presence; where his holy temple was erected! Alas ! how fallen into ruin! scarcely any trace of its former grandeur left! Who can confidently say, “Here stood such a structure, — here such an edifice was erected?” Alas! the sovereign decree is accomplished, and Jerusalem,“the holy city,” is vanished away, like the morning cloud ; like the early dew!
What numberless revolutions, Jerusalem, hast thou undergone since thy first establishment! since David and Solomon sat upon thy throne! They have long slept with their fathers, and thou art now delivered up to a foreign power, to be the habitation of the Gentiles.
Where are thy costly temples, founded by Solomon, by Cyrus, or by Herod? They have been successively humbled to the dust; their riches despoiled, and their foundation razed. Where once the blazing altar consumed the victim, is now known no more! Where orice the odoriferous clouds rose from the appointed sacrifice, with a “sweet smelling savour," now the fumes of passion and revenge, the torch of war! The foes of God bave united to debase its glory, and destroy its very, being ;-to make it a “hissing and a curse!" Where the presence of the Lord descended from on high on the mercy-seat, and filled the house with glory; where, in responsive strains of melody, and adoration, the priests and people joined in a solemn con. cert,-a desolate silence is heard, proclaiming “the glory is departed!" Where the holy law of God was wont to be read in the ears of all the people; where the melodious voice of the Saviour afterwards proclaimed his everlasting gospel,--the Mahometan and Papal superstitions triumph!." The golden candlestick is thrown aside as a useless thing, to make room for the throne of the Prince of Darkness *".
Look upon Jerusalem. Consider her former greatness, her ancient honour, her heavenly laws and ordinances, and say, is not the sceptre departed ? ilas not a lawgiver ceased? Is not prophecy fulfilled ? Is not Shiloh come? He has come, and accomplished all that was predicted by his prophets and himself.
Let England, let London, look upon Jerusalem, and tremble, since, notwithstanding tlie bounty of the Lord, she has crucified him afresh, and put him to open shame. Yes, let us put the question : Why are not we like Jerusalein? Why are we fourishing? or rather, Why have we tourished so long, while empires
Howe's Living Temple,
have tottered, and kingdoms fell around us? “ Are we better than they ? No, in nowise!" For, if Jerusalem crucified the Lord of glory, and with wicked hands put biin to death, have not we, though favoured with his everlasting gospel for a long succession of years, been insensible of his judgments, when they have been abroad in the earth? When he has shaken his swoid over us, have we been humbled under it? In our solemn fasts, have we not fasted like unto those mentioned in the fifty-eighth chapter of Isaiah? O let us take warning while it is not too late : let us cry unfeignedly for mercy, and entreat the Lord for Christ's sake to be reconciled to us, lest peradven, ture, when his wraih is kindled but a little, we perish before his face, like Jerusalein of old, and find no mercy.
THE PEELED BOUGH RENEWED.
To the Editor, Sir, My peeled branch has suffered much through the wintery months; yety
beyond expectation it has a little revived, and I doubt not but some of your readers will be pleased to hear it is yet Woburn, Bucks.
UNCONSUMED. : The wasted vine and the barked fig-tree, mentioned in Joel i. 7. and in chap. ii. 19, bear fruit and yield their strength.--"He maketh the dry tree to flourish.”
There are wonders in nature. How striking the change bes tween December and May!-Wonders in Providence. Joseph is in prison and in chains; then anon in royal robes ; and next the throne ! Wonders of grace. Saul, the persecutor, is Paul the preacher!
« Wonders of grace to God belong:
Repeat his mercies in your song." With these views, we can believe that the barked bough can regain its former beauty and fruitfulness. “ Not by might, nor by power,” natural, moral, acquired, or improved ; " but by my Spirit, saith the Lord.”. Can these dry bones live? The barren fig-tree bear? The dead tree sprout again. The dry rod Hoarish? The breath of the Almighty shall give life to tbe slain,
-his energetic life, fruitfulness to the barren, ---the virtue of the divine waters shall make even the dead tree to rebud, and the divine presence and fiat, shall make Aaron's rod to flourish.
1. A minister of Jesus, wlio loves his Lord, whose delight has been in his work, made useful to many in it, and still loves it; but he is peeled of his strength and ability to act for his Lord, his cause, and his people. The unconsumed has known a little of this state, He has been wrter the deplina lunifo ctrint has