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universally combustible, and so contrived by its continuity, as to aid the progress and expansion of the flames, when these have once fastened upon them. Their internal and moveable parts are still worse, consisting of substances, all combustible in themselves, and some rendered highly inflammable from their texture, levity, and position.

“ Such are the receptacles to which men commit their property, of which the houses themselves always constitute a considerable part, their persons, their lives and the persons and lives of all that are sacred to them in trust, or endeared to them by the ties of social and domestic affinity. It may be truly affirmed, that no man lies down to rest, on any night of the year, without incurring the hazard of being destroyed by this merciless enemy before the morning. The secret treachery of an incendiary, the negligence of a servant, the flaring of a candle, a spark ejected from a grate, besides many other variable chances, may in a moment give the first inpulse to this calamity, and a few minutes place it beyond the power of stopping its exterminating process. Yct because night after night has passed without its baving happened, with this argument alone to suppress his natural fears, or father to prevent their excitement, he again lies dowu in security, till at length, perhaps, the dreadful but undrcaded catastrophe, which though not sure is always probable falls upon him un provided, and overwhelms him.

Few men have arrived at the age of forty without hav, ing experienced the danger or felt the alarm of fire in their own persons. History abounds with instances of its effects in its larger masses; its transient occurrences are read, among the articles which the daily papers of intelligence present for our listless amusement; and if the spirits of all those who from the first ages of the world have been sufferers in some way or other, by this fatal delusion, could be arranged to give their testimony to it, their numbers would cover a not inconsiderable portion of the inhabited surface of the globe.

“ All men are interested in this detail : yet there are few by whom its interest will be felt with a practical impression; and the hardy writer who should attempt to fix it, and to demonstrate the danger and fallacy of the popnlar error, would incur much less hazard of being disbelieved, than ot exciting the derision of his readers for his unfounded zeal. • There needs no ghost (may they say) come from the dead,' nor writer from the press, to tell us this.' We all know it already. We all know it.-True ; but we all act as if we were utterly ignorant of it. We shudder at the thought of it, when any recent or near example brings it home to our bosoms; but neither example, nor self-bought experience, operate as a warning. There was a time in the annals of this kingdom, when, if ever, the minds of its inhabitants might have been awakened to a sense of their future safety; when a dreadful confiagration had laid its whole metropolis in asbes. it might then have been expected that the united powers of science and legislation would have been all put in action to inyent and carry into exccution some effectual provision against the recurrence of the same calamity. This most obvious of all expedients either never occurred to any onc among all the numerous sufferers, or fell with so faint an in pression as to be unfelt, or inefficient. It is recorded, indeed, that the King did, by his own authority, order that the streets should be made wider than before, and prohibit the use of lath and timbers in constructing the walls of the new built houses. The Parliament, which met immediately after, confirmed what had been done, but made no provision for the future. There cannot be a stronger argument of the total indifference of the nation to the general subject. It is not in the nature of mankind to think in the mass. It is only from the minds of highly endowed individuals that inventions proceed, which conduce most to the benefit of society. Of this character was Sir Christopher Wren, the greastest architect of his time. He accordingly stood forth upon this occasion, and proposed the design of rebuilding the city, on a plan of great--not safety, but symmetry and magnificence ! He too joined the whole body of the people in asserting the prerogative of fashion over common sense and the principle of self preservation. The people rebuilt their houses, and he abetted them, with the same destructive materials; and it is almost the only instance, in which we, their descendants, have not yet surpassed them.”

Mr. Hastings, after shewing the dangerous construction of several parts of the houses, especially of the garrets, which are mere frames of battens, proposes his remedies. The first and chief of those, which relate to the wall, is that “ of whatever material the bulk of the walls be constructed, they be lined with bricks.” In the ceiling he proposes, that bars of cast iroli may be substituted for rafters of wood; flooring to be laid for the principal apartments; mortar for the others. Mr. H. highly commends for the fire places the lattices of wire called fire guards, sometimes suspended to the bars' of a grate, and sometimes placed erect İzefore it. Of the stairs, he says that, whether they be the appendages of of a poor or rich habitation, they ought, invariably, to be

built of stone. The doors and windows, Mr. Hastings ad, mits, must for the present, be made of wood; but he hopes, that indurations of other substances will be invented, which shall possess the tenacity and levity, without the combusti. bility of wood. "The same, or a similar process, that can convert a fragment of horn or tortoise shell into a snuff box or drinking horn, may be iinproved and extended to the dimensions of a window shutter." Garrets and attics should be built entirely of masonry in the form of arches, and their floors of mortar,

CHRISTMAS EVE.

(Continued from page 192.)

Again the maple cups unfill'd appear,
And cakes and honey drops are dealt to cheer;
The floor is clear’d, in form the couples meet,
Dame calls the dance and nimbly move the feet;
The pipe, the tabor, and the tuneful strings,
Diffuse a rapture little known to kings.

The hollow, boards, beneath the rural beau, .
Return the sound and mock the dancer's to,
The maids, recurrent, in their steps excell,
With glances speaking more than tongues can tell;
A modest freedom to the swains allow,
Clap hands, and kiss beneath the missle bough.

Let eunning statesmen seek the courtly ring,
And sell; for bribes, their country and their king ;
Bespread the well-trimm'd face with looks demure,
And meditate within the villain's lure.
Here lurk no treasons, here no courtiers stray,
Speak to deceive, or listen to betray.
Tis harmless all, and still thus understood,
Of health productive, and of moral good :
Let waring tyrants desolate the earth,
And give to vice and ev'ry evil birth;
These rural sports, by nature's voice reveal'd,
Outshine the ball-room aud the tented field.

And now the magpie, (as Dan Chaucer sung)
Forgets 'tis night, and mocks the flippant tongue;
While Tray, the house.dog, greets his master's guest,
And wags his tail, and fawns to be caress’d :
Not his the ingrate's interested part,
But
pure

affection from an honest heart.
Nor sleeps Grimalkin 'nidst the rich regale,
But purs aronnd and licks her tabby tail,
And as the minstrel wake his tuneful strings,
About she curvets or aloft she springs;
Drawn by example with felinian pride,
Her half-grown kittens frolic by her side.

(To be Continued.)

To M. L.
When first my bosom was inspired

With all celestial love!
To the dear Maid my heart aspired

Thou did'st that passion move.
Lest thou my love would'st treat with scorn

Fear seiz'd my constant breast,
My thoughts did rove from night to morn

I ne'er knew any rest.

But when thou did'st my love retorn

And said thou would'st be mine,
With bliss supreme my breast did burn

'Twas extacy divine

J. D.

THE SLAVD.

We hope that the pertinacious critics who condemn Tobin as a plagiarist, are not among the cnlightened multitude who gave paramount success to this new musical piece. The

Slave, as a composition, certainly has one strong feature of originality ; inasinuch as it is a mixture of tragedy, comedy,

and farce. We will sketch the plot, and proceed to make good our assertion :--Captain Clifton bad formed an af

dent attachment to Zelinda, a slave belonging to Col. Lin denburg, whom he met in Europe under the assumed name of Alkmar, and who won from Clifton the money he had procured to emancipate Zelinda and her child from slavery:Clifton arrives at Surinam while it is in possession of the English, and finds the settlement endangered by the Negro rebellion, and Zelinda beloved by Gambia, an African slave. He commands a successful expedition against the rebels, in which his life is saved by his African rival; and on the Governor's granting Clifton the privilege of emancipating 3 slave, he sacrifices his feelings for Zelinda to a sense of duty and gratitude, and gives freedom to Gambia. At this time his enemy Alkmar, or Lindenburg, arrives, and hearing that Clifton's mistress is his slave, he exults in his power over them, and contrives to have Clifton thrown into prison for debt.-Gambia no sooner hears of Clifton's fate, than he resolves not to be outdone in gratitude, and sells himself to Lindenburg, and restores Clifton to freedom. Lindenburg demands of the Governor possession of Zelinda and her child, and attempts the chastity of Zelinda--Gambia interposes, and in the struggle wounds his master, yet wishing to preserve Lindenburg's life, he staunches the wound, in doing which he perceives a brand of infamy on his breast-During this, Zelinda has made her escape and joined Clifton-Gambia conducts them to the spot where he has concealed their child, but being closely pursued, is (after having ensured their safety) himself taken, and brought back to his wounded master, who orders him to be delivered over to justice, first, branded and tortured-but alarmed at the mysterious hints Gambia throws out of his own disgrace, lic dismisses his attendance, and in a conference with the African, all is explained. Struck with the noble conduct of Gambia in not betraying his secret, but who is anxious to preserve his guilty life, he gives him his freedom, and puts into his hands a paper emancipating Zelinda and her child. The overjoyed Gambia hastens to communicate the glad tidings to Zelinda and Clifton, who is dispatched to England with an account of the restoration of peace with the Settlement, accompanied by Gambia, who conclndes with an appropriate panegyric on the efforts of this country in the cause of Africa.

First, to the tragedy. Gambia is a black man with a white heart, full of declamatory magnanimity, which he pompously pours forth very much after the manner of the pathetically long winded Selico in The Africans: but the character was extremely well sustained by Mr. Macready, whose style much resembles that of the French school. Secondly, to the

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