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table was hospitable; and he appropriated one day in the week to persons distinguished by their learning, and particularly those of the Royal Society. He was extremely temperate both in eating and drinking. His custom was, to rise very early in the morning; and, from his first getting up, he was constantly fit to have gone abroad, though for some of his last years he stirred not out of his own house. • The study of nature, and the improvement of knowledge, were the employment and pleasure of nis life, and to the exercise of his high intellectual qualities, are wc indebted for the first establishment of the British Museum. Having with great labour and expense, during the course of his long life, collected a rich cabinet of medals, objects of natural history, productions of art, antiquities, and an extensive library of manuscripts and printed books, he bequeathed the whole to the public, on condition that twenty thousand pounds should be paid to his executors. Included in this collection were gold and silver coins, which, considered only as bullion, were worth upwards of seven thousand pounds.
The gems and precious stones of every kind, both in their natural state, and as the jeweller has manufactured them ; the numerous vessels of jasper, agate, onyx, cornelian, sardonyx, &c.; the curious cameos, the vast stores of the various productions of nature; and the completest library extant of physic and natural history, consisting of 50,000 volumes, of which 347 are drawings, or books illuminated, 3516 manuscripts; in whole, so industriously collected, and intended for the glory of God, and the good of man, he declares solemnly in his will, he believes to be worth more than four times what he expected to be paid to his family for them.
Government fulfilled the terms of the legacy, and in 1753 an Act of Parliament was passed for the purchase of Sir Hans Sloanes Museum, together with the Harleian collection of manuscripts, and for procuring one general repository, for the better reception and more convenient use of the collections, and of the Cottonian library, and additions thereto. The museum of Sir Hans Sloane was accordingly removed from Chelsea to Bloomsbury, and thus commenced the formation of the British Museum, to which national collection the most valuable additions have, from time to time up to the present period, constantly been making.
The following is an enumeration of the contents of Sir Hans Sloanes Collection, at the time of its transfer to the public.
library of printed books and manuscripts, including
books of prints and drawings VoU* 5S'95S,
Coins and medals
Antique idols, utensils, otc
Cameos, intaglios, seals, etc
Vessels and utensils of agate, jasper, &c. •
Anatomical preparations of human bodies, parts ot
mummies, calculi, 8cc
Quadrupeds and their parts
Birds and their parts, eggs, Sec.
Corals, sponges, zoophytes ■**'
Volumes of dried plants ***
Mathematical instruments -j*j
Miscellaneous artifieial curiosities T T
[Partly Abridged from Faul«ne»'s Hittoryof Ckelua.]
"what we hope ever to do with ease, we must learn first to do with diligence.—Dr. Johnson.
People who are always innocently cheerful and good humoured, are very useful in the world; they maintain T>eace and happiness, and spread a thankful temper amongst all who live around them.—Miss Talbot.
ILLUSTRATIONS OF EXPERI MENTAL SCIENCE. Indestructibility Of Matter. A Common tallow-candle supplies an instructive illustration of some of the changes incident to matter. Without going particularly into the phenomena of its combustion, which will come under our notice in a future paper, we may observe, that the tallow, being liquefied by heat, rises between the filaments of the wick, until, coming near to the flame, it is vaporised. From a state of vapour, it very rapidly passes into that of gas, which gas yields a continuous flame and a brilliant light. We will suppose, that the candle is a short six mould, that it is well made, the tallow of good quality, and that it be kept constantly snuffed. During its combustion, if the necessary conditions of constant snuffing, and freedom from a current of air be observed, no smoke will arise from it. This we may prove by holding over the candle, a little above the extremity of the flame, a piece of white card-board, or of polished tin. When the process of combustion is at an end, we say, in common language, "the candle is burnt out," and all that remains, visible to our senses, is a few' fragments of charred wick, which have been collected in the snuffers.
A mould candle of six to the pound, weighs rather more than two ounces and a half. Under careful management, the whole of the tallow may be consumed, leaving in the snuffers about one fourth of an ounce of the wick. But what has become of the tallow? It has disappeared, but not a particle of it has been wasted or destroyed. Those portions of the tallow and of the cotton, which now elude our observation, have been added to the surrounding atmosphere, and, although they may never again be all united under the precise forms of animal fat, and the seed-pod of the cotton-tree, yet are they performing, in the economy of nature, offices equally important and equally useful. What has been said respecting a tallow-candle, may be viewed as applicable, with but slight alterations, to an oil-lamp, and a wood, or coal fire. In the two latter, wc commonly observe the liberation of great quantities of smoke, and hence we have less difficulty in accounting for the dissipation of the particles of fuel. But in these cases, a portion only of the combustible materials pass off in a visible form. A fire, whether it be for domestic, or manufacturing purposes, always implies the union of some portions of the inflammable materials, with certain portions of the surrounding atmosphere, constituting entirely new compounds, which compounds may, by a process we shall hereafter describe, be collected separately and examined. The changes, thus briefly hinted at, are only a very small part of what are constantly going on around us. In the vegetable world, these changes, by their rapid succession, are strikingly apparent. A few simple elements, blended in different proportions, make up the vast variety of herbs and flowers, of fruits and trees, that adorn the surface of the earth. Whilst some tender plant springs up in the morning, and withers before night, the oak of the forest resists the blasts of a hundred winters. Yet the sturdy oak, in all its grandeur, is not exempt from changes, nor could it exist without them. Its leaves periodically fall off, and, as we are accustomed to say, rot; but this rottenness is necessary for the complete separation of the elements of which those leaves are composed, previous to their reappearance, under some new form, in connexion with the mineral, vegetable, or animal creation. _
The seed cast into the earth dies, but during the progress of its decay, it protects, nourishes, and invigorates, the germ of a new plant, that springs forth from its ruins. In these, and the greater proportion of the changes with which we are familiar, air and water co-operate. The elements of which vegetables and animals are composed, belong, for the most part, to that class of matter denominated aeriform, or in chemical language gaseous. Air and water hold a distinguished place among these elements, and, by a wise arrangement of Providence, are rendered alike subservient to vitality and to decomposition.
The odour exhaled from putrescent animal matter, .s peculiarly offensive and distressing to mankind, and to some of the inferior animals. Hence, the propriety of burying the dead in the earth, where decomposition proceeds less rapidly, and without endangering the existence of animated beings.
We shall conclude this paper by an extract from the Journal of a Naturalist.
"Surrounded as we are by wonders of every kind, and existing only by a miraculous concurrence of events, admiration seems the natural avocation of our being; nor is it easy to pronounce, amidst such a creation, what is most wonderful. But few things appear more incomprehensible, than the constant production and re-absorption of matter. An animal falls to the ground and dies; myriads of creatures are now summoned by a call, hy an impulse of which we have no perception, to remove it, and prepare it for a new combination. Chemical agencies, fermentation, and solution, immediately commence their actions to separate the parts, and in a short time, of all this great body, nothing remains but the framework or bones, perhaps a little hair, or some wool, and all the rest is departed we know not whither! Worms and insects have done their parts; the earth has received a portion, and the rest, converted into gases, and exhalable matters, has dispersed all over the region, which, received into vegetable circulation, is again separated and changed, becomes modified anew, and nourishes that which is to continue the future generations of life. The petal of the rose; the pulp of the peach j the azure and gold on the wing of the insect; all the various productions of the animal and vegetable world 5 the very salts and compounds of the soil, are but the changes some other matters have undergone, which have circulated through innumerable channels since the first production of all things, and no particle (has) been lost. Bearing in mind this assured truth, that all these combinations have not been effected by chance, or peculiarity of circumstances, but by the predetermination of an Almighty intelligence, who sees the station, progress, and final destination of an atom, what an infinity of power and intellective spirit does this point out! An Omnipotence which the bodied minds of us poor creatures cannot conceive. Truly may we say, 'who can find out the Almighty to perfection?'" R. R.
Man is a thinking being, whether he will or no; all he can do, is, to turn his thoughts the best way.—Sir W. Tbmple.
Books are not absolutely dead things, hut doe contain a potencie of life in them, to be as active as that soul was whose progeny they ate; nay, they do preserve as in a violl the purest efficacie and extraction of that living intellect that bred them. I know they are as lively and as vigorously productive as those fabulous dragon's teeth, and being sown up and down, may chance to spring up armed men. * * * A good book is the precious life-blood of a master spirit, embalmed and treasured up on purpose to a life beyond life. Milton.
THE FIRST STEAM-BOAT IN THE WEST INDIES.
Sir Ralph Woodford told us, that when this steamer was first started, he and a large party, as a mode of patronizing the undertaking, took a trip of pleasure in her through some of the Bocas into the main ocean. Almost every one got sick outside, and, as they returned through the Boca Grande, there was no one on deck but the man at the helm and himself. When they were in the middle of the passage, a small privateer, such as commonly infested the gulf during the first troubles in Columbia, was seen making all sail for the shore of Trinidad. Her course seemed unaccountable; but what was their surprise, when they observed that on nearing the coast, the privateer never tacked, and finally, that she ran herself directly on shore, her crew, at the same time, leaping over the bows and sides of the vessel, and scampering off as if they were mad, some up the mountains, and others into the thickets. This was so strange a sight, that Sir R. W. ordered the helmsman to steer for the privateer, that he might discover the cause of it. When they came close, the vessel appeared deserted; Sir Ralph went on board of her, and, after searching various parts without finding any one, he at length opened a little side-cabin, and saw a man lying on a mat, evidently with some broken limb. The man made an effort to put himself in a posture of supplication; he was pale as ashes, his teeth chattered, and his hair stood on end.
''Misericordia! misericordia! Ave Maria," faltered forth the Colombian.
Sir Ralph asked the man in Spanish, what was the cause of the strange conduct of the crew:—" Misericordia!" was the only reply.
"Do you know who I am ?" said the governor.
"The—the—O Seiior 1 Misericordia! Ave Maria!" answered the smuggler.
It was a considerable time before the fellow could be brought back to his senses, when he gave this account of the matter;—that they saw a vessel apparently following them, with only two persons on board, and steering,without a single sail, directly in the teeth of the wind, current, (which runs like a river through the Bocas,) and tide; Against the breeze, against the tide, She steadied with upright keel: that they knew no ship could more in such a cour.se by human means; that they heard a deep roaring noise, and saw an unusual agitation of the water, which their fears magnified; finally, that they concluded it to be a supernatural appearance, accordingly drove (heir own vessel ashore, in an agony of terror, and escaped as they could; that he himself was unable to move, and that, when he heard Sir Ralph's footsteps, he verily, and indeed believed,
that he was fallen into the hands of the evil spirit. Six
Months in the West Indies.
I Witnessed a peculiar trait of the customs of the Himalayan peasants, the putting an infant to sleep by the action of water. The successful issue of the experiment I had quietly made up my mind not to believe in, until convinced by ocular proof. The method was as follows. The child, whose age might be a year or two, was laid by its mother, who was employed in bruising grain, on a charpoy, (low bed or stretcher,) placed on a sloping green bank, along the top of which ran a small stream. A piece of bark introduced through the embankment, conducted a slender spout of water, which fell, at the height of about half a foot, on the crown of the infant's head. It was fast
asleep when I witnessed this process. Mundy's Sketches
The celebrated Admiral Lord Collingwood, remarks in a letter dated the Dreadnought, off Ushant, 1805. "If the country gentlemen do not make it a point to plant oaks wherever they will grow, the time will not be veiy distant, when, to keep our navy, we must depend entirely on captures from the enemy. You will be surprised to hear that most of the knees which were used in the Hibernia, were taken from the Spanish ships captured on the Nth of February; and what they could not furnish was supplied by iron. I wish every body thought on this subject as I do; they would not walk through their farms without a pocket-ful of acorns to drop in the hedge-side3, and then let them take their chance."
He that eyes a Providence shall always have a Providence to eye. Hall.
THE CINQUE PORTS. In a preceding number*, we had occasion slightly to allude to the maritime celebrity of the Cinque Ports, and the important position which they hold in our olden history. Some particulars respecting them, therefore, may not be unacceptable, especially as they will appropriately lead to the subject of our illustration.
During the period of Roman dominion in Britain, it was found necessary, in consequence of the incursions of the pirates then infesting the northern seas, to unite a certain number (nine,) of the ports, under the governance of an officer, for the better defence of the coast. This system was continued by the Saxons, who, however, only incorporated five ports for this object; though, as there is no charter in existence prior to the reign of Edward the First, some writers have assumed that they did not exist as a corporation until then. From the mention of Dover, Sandwich, and Romney in the Domesday Book, as privileged ports, and from various concurring circumstances, the date of their original incorporation may be assigned to the early period we have alluded to.
Our early history affords abundant evidence of the eminent services and high importance of the Cinque Ports, both in times of war and of peace. During the former, they were for many centuries the chief arm of our naval power, whilst they greatly promoted the defence of the districts adjoining the coast during the latter. The arduous, and almost incessant, duties which they were bound by charter to perform, tended, in no inconsiderable degree, to foster .the growth of hardy and experienced seamen'; and their history, consequently, abounds with splendid instances of naval gallantry.
In return for these services various privileges and immunities were granted them from time to time; and it has been well observed, that, "in almost every reign, the pages of history show with how great honour and reputation the Ports discharged the sacred trust reposed in their valour, skill, and bravery, by their confiding country."
In conformity with their general name, there are five head, or incorporated Ports,—Hastings, Sandwich, Dover, IIy the, and Romney; but no less than thirty other places are severally united with, and participate in their privileges, as members of the original incorporation, and amongst which we may mention Margate, Ramsgate, Rye, Winchelsea, Folkestone, Faversham, Deal, and Walmer.
In order that they might efficiently maintain the free navigation of the Channel, and protect the coast from foreign enemies and pirates, they were compelled constantly to keep up a considerable naval force, being obliged to furnish, when called upon by the crown, 57 ships, manned by 1197 men and 57 boys, at their own charge, for 15 days at one time, after which it was in the power of the sovereign to keep them in commission for an unlimited period, at a stipulated rate of pay, which, however, was very insufficient to defray the heavy expenditure necessarily incurred. Notwithstanding this, there have been various instances where they contributed more than double the number of vessels required by their charter, thus incurring a heavy losst.
In consideration of these services, however, the Cinque Ports had many honours and privileges of great importance. "They were," we are told, "entitled to send two Barons to represent them in Parliament; they were, by their deputies, to bear the canopy over the king's head at his coronation, and to dine at the uppermost table, on his right hand, in the great hall; they were exempted from subsidies and other aids; their heirs were free from personal wardship notwithstanding any tenure; they were to be impleaded in their own towns, and no where else; they were to hold pleas and actions, real and personal; to have conveyance of fines, and the power of enfranchising villains; they were exempt from tolls, and had free liberty of buying and selling," with many other privileges.
At the period of the Norman Conquest of England, the Cinque Ports Fleet was so formidable, that it was only in consequence of its absence on the northern coast of England, in pursuit of a Norwegian tteet, which it completely destroyed, that William was enabled to effect a landing on the British shores. Having learned that the Ports Fleet was making all sail from the north, the Norman Sovereign
• See Saturday Magazine, Vol. IV., p. 74.
t Of the number of ships which the Pons were obliged to furnish, Hastings and Dover each contributed twenty-one and Sandwich, Jiew Homaey, and Hythe, each five.
was compelled to burn the greater part of his shipsj, to prevent their falling into the hands of the English.
The Cinque Ports rendered very eminent services at the period of the threatened invasion of the Spanish Armada, on which occasion they fitted six new ships of large size, at a cost of 43,000/.
In conformity with the example set by the Romans, the government and direction of these ports was intrusted to an individual of rank and consequence, who assumed the style and title of "Lord Warden, Chancellor, and Admiral of the Cinque Ports;" an office which has frequently been held by heirs apparent to the throne. Amongst the personages of the Blood Royal, on whom the mantle of the Lord Warden has fallen, we may mention Harold the Second, before his accession to the crown: Odo, Bishop of Bayeux, half-brother to William the Conqueror; Edward the First, when Prince of Wales; Henry the Fifth, when Prince of Wales; Humphrey, Duke of Gloucester, tho youngest son of Henry the Fourth; Richard the Third, when Duke of Gloucester; Henry the Eighth, before his accession to the crown; James the Second, when Duke of York; and Prince George of Denmark. The office has also been held by many individuals of high eminence, | including several of the most distinguished families.
After the death of Lord North, the office was conferred I upon William Pitt, whoso strict regard to the promo 1 tion of the prosperity of the Ports, called forth a uni1 versol feeling of respect amongst their inhabitants. This great statesman, on the year succeeding his appointment (1793), when war broke out with the French Republicans, organized several companies of horse and foot, under the designation of the Cinque Ports Fencibles, of which he assumed the command. The late Earl of Liverpool subsequently held the office, which was afterwards appropriately bestowed on his Grace the Duke of Wellington, (who is also Governor and Constable of Dover Castle,) on the surpassing eminence of whose name, it is, indeed, unnecessary to comment. We cannot, however, resist recording one circumstance, for every thing which relates to so great a man is matter of national interest: since his appointment, his Grace has paid into the Treasury, for the public service, the whole amount of the proceeds of his office, as Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports.
The last charter for their government, was granted by Charles the Second, in the twentieth year of his reign, which not only confirmed all preceding charters, but conferred additional privileges upon the freemen. This charter was subsequently confirmed by James the Second. 'But the glory of the Cinque Ports has long been of the past. Sandwich, once one of the most extensive and opulent ports in Britain, is now, partly from the ruin of its harbour, a small and insignificant borough; Winchelsea, which, in the time of Queen Elizabeth, was styled by that Princess, a "Little London,"'has experienced a similar reverse; Hythe was once so extensive and populous, as to contain seven parish churches; Rye and Romney aro nearly desolate; and of all the Cinque Ports and their dependencies, most of which were signally safe and extensive havens, only Dover, Hastings, Margate, and Ramsgate, are now in a flourishing condition, nor does their prosperity result from any circumstance connected with their original privileges. The "decline and fall" of the Cinque Ports from their ancient eminence, may be attributed to the ruin or injury of their harbours, by the long-continued recession or destructive effects of the sea; the abolition of their exclusive commercial privileges; and the alteration which has been made in tho system of raising a maritime force. Their decay consequent on these changes, was progressive, though its results were not the less certain.
The Court of the Cinque Ports, for holding pleas, as well as the grand assembly of the same, was originally held at the Shepw.iy-cross, near Limne, where the oath was administered to the Lord Warden on his induction into office. This high functionary is now generally sworn in at Bredenstone Hill, to the south-west of Dover, opposite the castle, where the ancient court of S hep way was held, and most of the business relating to the Cinque Ports transacted. In addition to the above, the Lord Warden also holds a Court of Equity, as chancellor, and a Court of Admiralty as admiral of the ports, which is generally kept in the church of St. James at Dover. Walmer Castle, the subject of our engraving, is
} See Saturday Magatin; Vol. IV., p. 73.
situated on the coast, about a mile to the north of Deal, at the commencement of the lofty ground which extends from thence to Dover. This castle was erected about the same period with those of Sandown and Deal, for the defence of the coast. The manor of Walmer was anciently held by the De Aubervilles, of Hamo de Cresequer, by knights' service. It afterwards came by marriage to the De Criol family, the last of whom, Sir Nicholas de Criol, was killed at the battle of St. Alban's. The ruins of the manorhouse of the De Criols, still remain in the vicinity of the church-yard, in which several stone coffins were dug up about thirty years since, belonging to this family.
This castle has long been appropriated as the residence of the Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports. When Mr. Pitt held that office, he frequently resided here during the summer months. In time of war, two of his majesty's vessels constantly lie off in the roads, when the Lord Warden is resident. The mode of fortification adopted in this structure in common with most of the Cinque Ports Castles, is somewhat peculiar: as all the works are circular, carried up by arches of masonry from the foot of the moat. Level with that are close quarters, surrounding the whole, called the rounds, to the number of 52, each having a small casemate for scouring the ditch, secured by a massive bar of iron, and (until alterations were made in the reign of George the First,) a funnel, extending to the parapet of the upper works, for the purpose of carrying off the smoke which might rise in defending them, by throwing down hand-grenades from above in case of the entrance of an enemy. All these, however, amongst many other alterations, have been stopped up, with one exception; the fosse has also been appropriated to the peaceful purposes of a garden.
The view from Walmer Castle, from its position near the sea-shore, is extensive and magnificent, commanding an ever-varying view of the vast fleets passing to or from the greatest port in the world.
The village of Walmer Street, which is pleasantly situated on the road to Dover, at some distance from the Castle, is much resorted to during the season by strangers. Many elegant houses have been erected at this picturesque spot, which from the salubrity of its site, and the advantages it offers for sea-bathing, seems likely to increase. The ancient church, dedicated to St. Mary, displays some curious examples of Roman architecture, particularly on its doorways, and on the face of the arch which separates the nave and chancel.
The living is a Perpetual Curacy; it is not valued in the
king's books, but is of the certified value of £32. Thia church has recently received an addition of 380 sittings, of which 280 arc free; part of the expense incurred in making which was defrayed by the Society for Promoting the Enlargement of Churches and Chapels,—a society which has greater claims upon our support than almost any other existing in this country.
The land in this district is extremely fertile; the hill side toward the south is covered with extensive unenclosed corn-fields; the scene is, however, deficient in that important constituent in natural beauty, wood. In the neighbouring parish of Ripple, is a very curious oblong intrenchment, called the Dane-pits, comprising about half an acre of ground, on which are various small hillocks and eminences. At a small distance to the north of Ripple Church, is another ancient camp of high interest to the antiquary, as it is supposed that it was thrown up by Ca?s«ir in his route towards Barham Downs,
Our hours of meals are wonderfully changed in little more than two centuries. In the reign of Frauds the First (about 1515,) they used still to say—
To rise at five, and dine at nine,
The custom of dining at nine in the morning soon relaxed. Still persons of quality long after dined at the latest at ten; and supper was at five or six in the evening. Charles the Fifth used to dine at ten, sup at seven; and all the court were in bed by nine. They sounded the curfew, which warned them to put out their fires at six in the winter, and between eight and nine in the summer.
In England a similar change took place. But in some degree it is a change rather of name, than of the meals themselves. Our ancestors would have called our luncheon dinner, and our dinner they would have called supper. It is a curious fact, that in some of the colleges in Oxford, where allowances are made by the founders for the meals of their scholars, a much more liberal sum is given for their supper, than for their dinner, implying that the supper was the more substantial meal.