vol II date / index
Sts. Tiburtius, Valerian, and Maximus, A. D. 229. Sts. Carpus, Bishop, Papylus, and Agathodorus, A.D. 251. Sts. Antony, John, and Eustachius, A.D. 1342. St. Benezet, or Little Bennet, A.D. 1184. B. Lidwina, or Lydwid, A.D. 1433.
1471. The battle of Barnet was fought in the wars between the houses of York and Lancaster, and the earl of Warwick, called "the king-maker," was slain on the field.
1685. Thomas Otway, the dramatic poet, died, at a public-house in the Minories, of want, by swallowing bread too eagerly which he had received in charity.
1759. George Frederick Handel, the illustrious musician, died. He was born at Halle, in Saxony, in 1684.
1793. Tobago, in the West Indies, taken by the English.
1809. Beilby Porteus, bishop of London, died at Fulham, aged 78.
Borage. Borago Officinalis.
Dedicated to St. Lidwina.
The Floral appearances of the year are accurately described by Dr. Forster in his "Perennial Calendar." He says, "In order to ascertain the varieties in the seasons, as indicated by the flowering of plants, we ought to become accurately acquainted with their natural periods, and the average time of flowering which belongs to each species. I have of late made an artificial division of the seasons of different plants into six distinct periods, to each of which respectively a certain number of species belong. Dividing then the reign of the goddess of blooms into six principal portions, we shall begin with the first in the order of phenomena. The Primaveral Flora may be said to commence with the first breaking of the frost before February; it comprehends the snowdrop, the crocus, the coltsfoot, all the tribe of daffoddils, narcissi, jonquils, and hyacinths, the primrose, cyclamen, heartsease, violet, cowslip, crown imperial, and many others. The Equinox being also past, and the leaves beginning to bud forth amidst a display of blossoms on the trees, another period may be said to begin, and May ushers in the Vernal Flora, with tulips, peonies, ranunculi, monkey poppy, goatsbeards, and others: at this time, the fields are bespangled with the golden yellow of the crowfoot, or blue with the harebells[.] The whole bosom of earth seems spread with a beautiful carpet, to soften the path of Flora, at this delicious season. By and bye, towards the middle of June, the approach of the Solstice is marked by another set of flowers; and the scarlet lychnis, the various poppies, the lilies and roses, may be said to constitute the Solstitial Flora. As the year declines, the Aestival Flora, corresponding to the Vernal, paints the garish eyes of the dog-days with sunflowers, China asters, tropoeoli, African marigolds, and other plants which love heat. The Autumnal Flora, answering to the Primaveral, then introduces Michaelmas daisies, starworts, and other late blowing plants, with their companions, fungi and mushrooms, till at length bleak winter shows only a few hellebores, aconites, and mosses, belonging to the Hibernal Flora of this dreary season. Thus, in this our temperate climate, have we a round of botanical amusements all the year, and the botanist can never want for sources of recreation. How different must be the order of phenomena about the poles of the earth, where summer and winter are synonymous with day and night, of which Kirke White has given us a very fine description:—
On the North Pole.
Where the North Pole, in moody solitude,
Spreads her huge tracts and frozen wastes around,
There ice rocks piled aloft, in order rude,
Form a gigantic hall; where never sound
Startled dull Silence' ear, save when, profound
The smoke frost muttered: there drear Cold for aye
Thrones him,—and fixed on his primæval mound,
Ruin, the giant, sits; while stern Dismay
Stalks like some woe-struck man along the desert way.
In that drear spot, grim Desolation's lair,
No sweet remain of life encheers the sight;
The dancing heart's blood in an instant there
Would freeze to marble[.] Mingling day and night,
(Sweet interchange which makes our labours light,)
Are there unknown; while in the summer skies,
The sun rolls ceaseless round his heavenly height
Nor ever sets till from the scene he flies,
And leaves the long bleak night of half the year to rise.