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and beat the boat with her hands, while the tears ran from her swollen eyes down her inflamed cheeks. The lady was dreadfully pale, perfectly quiet, and, to all appearance, almost unconscious of everything around.
After the passengers were all disposed of, the attention of the crew was directed to the carriages, one of which was soon slung, and a large boat prepared to receive it; but after many vain attempts to place it in the boat the design was abandoned, and rather than run the risk of losing the carriages, the anchor was ordered to be weighed, and we stood for the harbour. That the reason of the captain's unwillingness to approach the harbour was a quarrel of some sort was evident, as the harbour-officers would not allow any of the warps to be fastened to the shore, which caused a great deal of abuse from all parties. At last our steamer was safely moored alongside of a large Swedish vessel; and as it still wanted five hours of the time appointed for sailing, four of us joined together, and, hiring a boat, went ashore. No one prevented our landing ; no one asked for our passports even on entering the town; and if they had, we could not have given them, as they were in the hands of the commissariat. The streets were burning hot, and glared unpleasantly to the eye. The cafés were filled with smokers and drinkers: we wandered up one street and down another for several hours-smoked our pipes, drank our coffee and iced punch-bought each a bottle of rum, and a pipe head shaped as a bust of Napoleon, and repaired on board our steamer in good time. At two P. M. the mail-bags came on board, the anchor was weighed, and we steamed out of the port.
At Leghorn we had left the greater part of our passengers; all the deck ones but the Fanaariote and myself were gone. The steamer was not so crowded nor so merry, but the day was as hot as ever; and towards evening it blew a capful of wind. All the passengers but Georgidas and myself were sick we, Robinson Crusoe-like, constructed of tarpaulins a sort of tent, and Georgidas having an oriental coverlid, we stretched it under its shade and soon fell asleep.
At four next morning we were awakened by hearing the anchor drop, and on turning out, found we were off Civita Vecchia. In a short time we were surrounded by boats, but no one was allowed to approach, as one or two boats, with the Papal flag in the stern pulled round and round the steamer. It appeared that we were deemed in quarantine, and must await examination of the bills of health before any communication with the shore could be held. It was the 14th of June, a solemn festival day, and we could easily discern moving along the shore, a long procession of priests, friars, soldiers, crosses, crosiers, banners, and other ecclesiastical appendages, as also immensely large lighted candles, although it was good daylight. At ten o'clock we got permission, and went ashore the procession was filing its interminable length through the streets, while every head was uncovered and every knee bent before it. In the procession there could not have been fewer than ten thousand soldiers and about five thousand priests: some of the latter were carried on cushioned seats, borne on men's shoulders, and shaded by a canopy supported on long poles by four men; others walked under a canopy--but these were dignitaries. The great mass of the priests were of course on foot; some of them wore shoes, others sandals, but at least onethird walked barefoot. After the procession had passed, we went up to the town, where we found all the shops shut, and flags suspended from many of the windows. At the corners of a great many streets pavilions were erected, in which were crosses and candles burning. Before these the pious Catholic might be seen on his knees, crossing himself and saying his prayers. At last we found a traiteur's, where we had an excellent dinner; washed
it down with half a bottle of the wine profanely called Lachrymæ Christi; entered some of the churches; visited the holy well, which is said, and I think with truth, to contain the finest water in Europe; took each a bottle of it with us, and repaired on board. At noon the mail-bags came alongside, and we held on our course, leaving the island of Sardinia on our starboard quarter. The day, as usual, was fine; various games and sports amused us and at night, the tent being again constructed, the Greek and myself turned in. At sunrise on Friday morning the volcano Stromboli was seen puffing as if it were smoking a cigar. At eight A. M. we anchored in the Bay of Naples; but none save the mail-boat was allowed to communicate with the shore-a regulation which raised the choler of the many watermen paddling around us, who abused the officers in no measured language, and were answered with equal warmth.
At ten the mail-boat returned; the anchor was again weighed, and we steered down towards the Straits of Messina. During the afternoon the coast of Sicily appeared in sight; and at sunrise on Saturday morning we were in sight of Mount Etna, covered with snow. It continued visible nearly the whole day, and long after the coast of Sicily had disappeared. At sunset no land was to be seen; but at two o'clock on Sunday morning the steamer dropped anchor in the harbour of the island of Malta.
MENTAL EXERCISE IN RELATION TO HEALTH. WHATEVER opinion may be entertained respecting the merits of phrenologists as the founders of a new science of mind independently of any previous system of metaphysics, all who are competent judges unanimously award to them the credit of having shown more clearly than had ever before been done the intimate connexion between the mind and body, and the powerful, neverceasing action and reaction of those two constituents of our
nature upon each other. They have, moreover, traced the consequences, so momentous to man, of this connexion, and have laid down rules deduced from their inquiries for the practical guidance of mental training, which are gradually gaining ground, and are destined to subvert much that is still adhered to in education. By these means they have conferred benefits upon mankind, which may well console them, should they eventually arrive at the conclusion, that much of their science, on which they now most pride themselves, is not based on nature—or, at least, consists of hasty deductions from, or too extended generalisations of, facts that are undeniable.
Nor have the advantages derived from this source been confined to the early periods of life: it has been shown that, throughout human existence, he who would enjoy the highest degree of health must bear in mind that that blessing is the result of certain conditions of the mind as well as of the body, and that the relation which they bear to each other is one of the most influential circumstances on which health is dependent.
The functions of the nervous system, and especially of its centre and principal organ, the brain, have been explained in a previous paper, (in No. 38,) to which we beg to refer our readers, as containing the statement of the facts on which what follows is based.
From that article it will be seen that the functions of the nervous system are twofold: one set relating to the processes of the organic life, the other giving rise to the phenomena of animal existence. Of the latter class we may regard the operations of the moral and intellectual being as the highest developments; and they are all but universally referred to the brain as the seat of the soul, without which the animating principle would never manifest itself to our senses, and through which it is brought into commu nication with the material world.
It is this circumstance that the same organ is engaged in carrying on the merely vegetative processes, and in the operations
of reason, imagination, and sentiment—which occasions the activity in the whole nervous system; and thus it may at first mutual influence of mind and body.
Nor let it be thought strange that functions so dissimilar, and apparently incongruous, should be devolved upon one material organ. The body is designed to be the minister to the soul, the latter being set over it as its guide and ruler. It is needful, therefore, that the vital energies should be brought under the control of the will; and this could best be effected by making that organ which was selected as the medium between the mind and the external world the regulator and director of the corporeal pro
Exercise is as essential to the health of the brain as to that of any other organ, and with precisely the same limitations and exceptions. It must be proportioned to the strength of the brain in its vigour and duration, and fitted to call into action all the parts and faculties of the organ. Every function of the body, more especially every voluntary action, takes from the brain a portion of that vital energy which it is its peculiar office to furnish, and thus sets it in action to supply the deficiency thereby occasioned. In like manner, every exercise of mind, from the mere reception of impressions upon the organs of sense, up to the most abstract speculation, acts upon the brain, tending to exhaust its energies; but, when not excessive, stimulating it to healthful and invigorating action.
The nervous system, during infancy and childhood, is predominant in the animal economy; the various organic processes are now in their greatest vigour; the whole system is full of life and activity, and hence the heaviest demands are made upon the controlling and directing powers of the nervous system: moreover, though the mind is as yet incapable of reasoning and reflection, it is incessantly employed in receiving impressions from all the senses; a new world is around and within it, striking, with a force and power unknown in after-life, upon the tender and sensitive brain. Hence, though the nervous system is, comparatively speaking, most active and largely developed, the labours imposed upon it by the wants of the body are quite sufficient to occupy all its powers. Since, then, the amount of toil inevitable is so great, the utmost caution is requisite in imposing other tasks upon the brain.
Many parents and teachers there are, notwithstanding, whose chief object seems to be to occupy all the feeble mental powers of children, from the earliest dawn of reason, in incessant efforts at the acquisition of book-knowledge; who, wholly mistaking the nature and end of education, and ignorant of the human constitution, deem that they best promote the interests of those committed to their care by shutting them up from the sights and sounds of nature (from which the unshackled child does, in truth, derive a fund of knowledge far more extensive and valuable, because better calculated for reception and comprehension in the youthful mind than any to be gathered by them from books), and compelling them to wear out their temper and energy on tasks which have no interest or attraction for them, and are too often utterly unsuited to their years and wants. The consequences of this sad mistake have been often told, but they must be told again.
Ill health, in some shape or other, must follow such a course of training. The nervous influence, diverted from the natural channels, no longer supplies the vital power to the vegetative organs: the digestive functions may, perhaps, first be affected; then the blood is deteriorated in quality, and the body consequently arrested in its career of rapid development; the brain itself, deprived of the requisite stimulus and support from the blood, grows less and less able to support its multifarious duties, either physical or intellectual: thus, in a brief space, disease, rapidly bringing on dissolution, or destined to terminate in the same catastrophe by slow and lingering steps, is implanted in the young and susceptible frame. Or the course of events may be somewhat different. The undue excitement of the brain may divert too large a proportion of the vital current into its bloodvessels. As we have before pointed out (No. 50), this is necessarily attended with a corresponding increase of development and
appear that a provision is made to obviate the evils that might otherwise flow from the excessive cultivation of the intellect. And nature does make the effort, but then it is at the expense of all the other parts of the body; the bones and muscles languish for want of the proper supply of blood; while the nervous system, excited to an extraordinary degree of vigour, and no longer meeting with the resistance which the other parts of the system in a healthy state oppose to it, becomes too powerful: all the vital energies are concentrated in it, and then for a time the mind may rapidly expand its faculties: parents and friends may be charmed with displays of precocious reflection and genius, and flatter themselves with the hope of continuous progression until maturity, and of unheard-of intellectual greatness; but the dream will-must— soon be dissipated by the sad reality of broken-down health, of mental imbecility, and probably of death. It is vain to think that plans so opposed to the plainest laws of the human constitution can result in aught but failure and disappointment.
These are the more serious cases, which, though by no means rare, are of seldom occurrence compared with the innumerable instances in which the constitution is weakened, and permanent ill-health produced, by years of unremitting application to the various branches of scholastic education. To these evils young females are by far the most exposed. The circle of accomplishments they are now expected to possess is so extensive, that the acquisition demands the undivided application of all their time and faculties; their lives are a succession of tasks and lessons, interrupted only by the intervals of sleep, and the hurried moments begrudgingly given to meals; so that when the time arrives when they are freed from this wearisome discipline and are expected to reap its benefits, they are too often incapable of exerting their talents, and possessed with a thorough disgust for that on which they had, perhaps unwillingly, spent so much of the most precious period of existence.
Let it, then, be well understood that the physical and animal is the basis of the spiritual and intellectual in man, and is therefore first developed; that the first task of the brain is to superintend the growth of the body, and does not become fitted for that which is afterwards its highest and appropriate employment until infancy, childhood, and youth have passed away. Why is man capable of his noblest intellectual exertions only after the body is fully developed, and susceptible of no greater perfection? For this, among other reasons, that until then the brain has much more of its energies absorbed in the organic processes than is afterwards the case. The habitation once finished, there remains only the care of seeing that its integrity be maintained; the vegetative functions are now carried on with less rapidity, and require less nervous energy for their superintendence: now, then, is the time when the brain may more completely and intensely labour in the service of the mind, without risk to that on which its powers and the material operations of the mind are dependent.
Nor let it be supposed that we are now advocating the propriety of leaving the childish intellect uncultivated and uninformed. What we desire to see abolished is the unnatural stimulus to which children are subjected in too many schemes of intellectual education now in vogue. In this, as in the other subjects connected with health, we wish simply to impress upon our readers the wisdom of allowing nature to speak out; to beware of perverting natural tendencies-of cramping either the youthful limbs or intellect. It is by no means a necessary consequence that the child who cannot read should be ignorant; give his faculties but room to expand-place him where the beauties of nature may be open to his gaze, filling his mind with wonders and mysteries, and his innate desire for knowledge will prompt him to observe, to compare, and to inquire. Thus may the best of preparations be made for entering upon more formal and systematic study, to which he will come with an ardent love of knowledge, a deep feeling of the pleasures which it is capable of bestowing, a frame healthy and buoyant, spirits energetic and untiring; advantages which will enable him quickly to overtake and outstrip the poor,
puny, sickly child, who started before him in the race of knowledge with none of these acquirements, and under manifold disad
Intellectual pursuits may be made subservient to the promotion of bodily health as well as to mental excellence. It is frequently a point of great importance, even with this view, to instil habits of study in youth, so that they may become permanent in after-life. In all civilised countries there are classes of men who, never having been under the necessity of exertion, either physical or intellectual, and suffered to grow up without proper mental training, fall into those languid helpless states which are commonly called nervousness, ennui, hypochondriasis, &c.; all diseased states of the nervous system, occasioned by a want of sufficient employment for its energies, which might be usefully absorbed in intellectual exercise, if not needed to maintain bodily exertion. Nervousness chiefly affects females whose habits are sedentary, and manifests itself by the extraordinary effects produced upon them by causes which on healthy persons make scarcely any impression: it is the result of an accumulation of nervous energy or excitability, occasioned by the deficiency of bodily and mental exercise. Hysteria -a term which includes a vast number of painful affections, all dependent on a peculiarly susceptible state of the nervous system -is confined to this latter class of persons. In attributing this disease partly to the want of proper mental employment, we are borne out by Dr. Copland, who says, "a delicate and luxurious mode of living and rearing; neglect of whatever promotes the powers of the constitution, especially of suitable exercise in the open air, of early hours as to sleeping and rising; an over-refined mode of education, and the excitement of the imagination and emotions, to the neglect of the intellectual powers and moral sentiments; too great a devotion to music and the perusal of exciting novels, all serve to produce that state of the nervous system of which hysteria is one of the most frequent indications."
we wonder, then, at the pale, sickly countenances which we meet in crowds, in all the great marts of our trade and commerce; at the insanity and suicide which so frequently come like a thunderclap to dash into the dust the hopes of the ambitious and aspiring, and to render utterly null and void, so far as the individual is concerned, a whole life of stupendous exertion and unmitigated slavery? We do not: these are the natural, the inevitable consequences of habits so opposed to the laws of our constitution.
None are so apt to fall into errors of this kind as young and ardent students. They must be told that, high and noble as may be their objects, these will not secure them from the penalties attached to the breach of the natural laws, should they, in the pursuit of knowledge, be led to transgress them. shines upon the just and the unjust;" and in like manner no distinction is made, as to physical consequences, between those who exhaust their powers in pure high-minded labours for the benefit of mankind at large, and those whose whole soul is intent on some low, selfish pursuit of gain or sensual pleasure. Incalculable are the losses which the world has sustained by the premature death of those whose youth gave promise of faculties and dispositions fitted to bestow upon their fellow-creatures the highest benefits, but whose insatiable desire of knowledge was pursued in a manner and to an extent which blighted their own hopes, and disappointed the expectations of mankind.
Could we but succeed in showing that the objects for the attain ment of which the plans on which we have animadverted are pur sued: that the fond desire of seeing his child arrive at distinction and eminence, which prompts the parent to stimulate the mental faculties of the young so far beyond the limits of safety; that the hope of obtaining riches, power, or fame, which urges on so many men to make their lives an incessant struggle, devoting all their energies to a single object, and neglecting every other consideration if, we say, we could convince our readers as strongly as we are ourselves convinced, that these and all such desires and hopes are thwarted and defeated by the means taken to gratify and accomplish them, we should, more effectually than by any other method, effect our purpose of inducing them to yield obedience to the laws of health in reference to mental habits.
The parent who cherishes the praiseworthy expectation of intellectual excellence in his children, should begin to perform his share in its realisation by doing all that lies in his power to promote their general health. Let him carefully abstain from applying any stimulus to their minds, other than that which the everactive thoughts of the young themselves supply. Above all, let him not be deceived by premature displays of intelligence beyond the years of his child; let him take them rather as warnings-as indications of morbid sensibility and excitement, which, unless repressed and removed, will probably terminate in a manner the
precocity is a symptom of dangerous disease, which is aggravated, and often rendered incurable, by injudicious mental training.
In this country there is a very large and important class of men who are exposed to the most serious evils by the excessive mental labour and excitement to which they are constantly subject. They are found chiefly in what are called the middle ranks-the men who are engaged in commercial and professional pursuits, and whose untiring energy in the prosecution of their various objects has principally contributed to give to the British people that character for perseverance and indefatigable industry which it enjoys all over the world. This is one effect of their habits of mind and action of which we may well be proud; but there is a fearful drawback, which is not generally taken into account. What is the influence of those habits on individual happiness, is an inquiry, however, of no mean importance. Here we are confined to their bearing upon health, a point of view in which they are anything but pleasing. Many, oh many, are the thousands of those who, in their eager pursuit of business, of literary or pro-reverse of that which he may fondly anticipate. It is certain that fessional fame, sacrifice all that could make success a blessing! who become so utterly absorbed in the consideration, day after day, hour after hour, of the means, as quite to lose sight of the end; who not only forget the high destinies of man and the true aim of all exertion, but become insensible even to the monitions which their hard-pressed frames are constantly giving them of yie.ding powers and the approach of insidious disease. The cause of this disease is manifest. The vital energies are almost wholly expended in maintaining the unnatural exertions of the brain as the organ of thought; in spite of which, the cares and anxieties of business, perhaps more than the mere amount of intellectual labour required for the carrying on of any branch of trade, wear out and exhaust its powers. Hence, while all the organic functions are enfeebled-while digestion scarcely goes on at all, and the organs concerned in that most important process are worn out with ineffectual toil, or languish for want of sufficient exercisewhile the muscles become weak and flaccid, the blood deprived of its sustaining virtues, diverted out of the natural channels, and sent in disproportionate abundance to the brain, that organ itself daily grows less able to accomplish the tasks imposed upon it, or to sustain the burthen of cares with which it is overwhelmed. Can
To those who, in the prosecution of their favourite objects, neglect their health, and expose themselves to a degree of mental toil and excitement greater than is consistent with safety, we would say, that although they may for a time appear to go on with impunity, and to make rapid strides towards the accomplishment of their cherished plans, yet in reality they run great hazard of eventually being losers, even in this respect, by the means which they have adopted. Often, in similar circumstances, do the mental powers break down, and become incapable of any, or of but feeble, exertions at a time when, had they been moderately used, they would still have been in the vigour of their prime,-when, having been matured, strengthened, and exalted by experience, they would have been capable of greater efforts than ever. These evils they encounter, these advantages they throw away, for the sake of a brief period of extraordinary activity while the intellect is still immature and inexperienced. Their folly may be likened to that of children who, charmed by the glowing colours and sweet scents of the flowers in spring, would pluck them, soon to wither and decay, forgetful or ignorant of the rich harvest of fruit which
autumn might otherwise bestow for the support of the body as well as for the gratification of the senses.
It is evident, then, that the connexion of mind and body is not a merely speculative truth, but one fraught with many most important consequences to both. The external manifestations of mind-nay, even its inmost feelings and operations-are greatly influenced by the body; all the functions of the latter, with their innumerable variations, acting to some extent on the current of thought and feeling that is incessantly passing through the mind, and frequently giving rise to permanent associations among our ideas, or even to whole trains of thought. And, on the other hand, the state of the mind-its indolence or activity-its buoyancy and cheerfulness, or depression and gloom-its freedom from care and anxiety, or the reverse-is one of the chief causes of the healthy or unhealthy condition of the body; all its rapidly shifting phenomena having their due effect on the whole animal economy. In short, so intimate is their connexion, that it is little surprising that many have arrived at the conclusion, that the mind and body form one indivisible whole, no more capable, either of them, of separate existence than respiration is of going on after the heart has ceased to circulate the blood; an error undoubtedly, but one which has a degree of plausibility sufficient to impose upon those who, leaving out of consideration the purely metaphysical view of the question, fix their attention on facts of the kind about which we have now been occupied, to the exclusion of those, not less numerous and indubitable, which prove the existence of a power within us capable of triumphing over all the impediments and obstacles of the body, and of asserting its independent and more exalted nature.
WHAT am I?-how produced ?-and for what end?
The purple stream that through my vessels glides,
Who warm'd the unthinking clod with heavenly fire;
I strive to mount-but strive, alas! in vain-
Now with swift thought I range from pole to pole;
I trace the blazing comet's fiery tail,
A gnat, an insect of the meanest kind-
If, on sublimer wings of love and praise,
By adverse gusts of jarring instincts tost,
As, 'mongst the hinds, a child of royal birth
Of them I ask the way: the first replies,
I find I know too little or too much.
Almighty Power! by whose most wise command. Helpless, forlorn, uncertain, here I stand, Take this faint glimmering of thyself away,
Or break into my soul with perfect day!
This said, expanded lay the sacred text-
Oh, Truth divine! enlighten'd by thy ray,
I grope and guess no more, but see my way:
One nursed my pleasure, and one nursed my pride;
DIAMONDS, AND OTHER PRECIOUS STONES. In the history of the human race, there are few things which at first sight appear so remarkable as the prodigious value which, by common consent, in all ages and in all civilised countries, has been attached to the diamond. That a house with a large estate, the means of living not only at ease but in splendour, should be set in competition with, and even deemed inadequate to the purchase of, a transparent crystallised stone not half the size of a hen's egg, seems almost a kind of insanity. It would indeed truly deserve this name, if the purchaser were to part with what the seller would acquire by such a transfer. If, for the consciousness of possessing a diamond of nearly three quarters of an ounce weight, a country gentleman were to pay ninety thousand pounds in ready money, and an annuity of four thousand pounds besides, he would, very deservedly, incur some risk of a statute of lunacy; yet not only the above sum was given, but a patent of nobility into the bargain, by the Empress Catherine of Russia, for the famous diamond of Nadir Shah. In this case, however, although the seller acquired much, the purchaser did not undergo any personal privation; and, in reality, notwithstanding the costliness and high estimation of diamonds, they are not put in competition with the substantial comforts and conveniences of life. Among ornaments and luxuries they however unquestionably occupy, and have ever occupied, the highest rank. Even Fashion, proverbially capricious as she is, has remained steady in this, one of her earliest attachments, during probably three or four thousand years. There must be, therefore, in the nature of things some adequate reason for this universal consent, which becomes a curious object of inquiry. The utility of the diamond, great as it is in some respects, enters for little or nothing into the calculation of its price; at least, all that portion of its value which constitutes the difference between the cost of an entire diamond and an equal weight of diamond powder, must be attributed to other causes.
The beauty of this gem, depending on its unrivalled lustre, is, no doubt, the circumstance which originally brought it into notice, and still continues to uphold it in the public estimation; and certainly, notwithstanding the smallness of its bulk, there is not any substance, natural or artificial, which can sustain any comparison with it in this respect. The vivid and various refractions of the opal, the refreshing tints of the emerald, the singular and beautiful light which streams from the six-rayed star of the girasol-the various colours, combined with high lustre, which distinguish the ruby, the sapphire, and the topaz, beautiful as they are on a near inspection, are almost entirely lost to a distant beholder; whereas the diamond, without any essential colour of its own, imbibes the pure solar ray, and then reflects it, with undiminished intensity, too white and too vivid to be sustained for more than an instant by the most insensible eye, or decomposed by refraction into those prismatic colours which paint the rainbow and the morning and evening clouds, combined with a brilliancy which yields, and hardly yields, to that of the meridian sun. Other gems, inserted into rings and bracelets, are best seen by the wearer; and if they attract the notice of the bystanders, divide their attention, and withdraw those regards which ought to be concentrated on the person, to the merely accessory ornaments. The diamond, on the contrary, whether blazing on the crown of state, or diffusing its starry radiance from the breast of titled merit, "or in courts, and feasts, and high solemnities," wreathing itself with the hair, illustrating the shape and colour of the neck, and entering ambitiously into contest with the lively lustre of those eyes that rain influence on all beholders, blends harmoniously with the general effect, and proclaims to the most distant ring of the surrounding crowd, the person of the monarch, of the knight, or of the beauty. Another circumstance tending to enhance the value of the diamond is, that although small stones are sufficiently abundant to be within the reach of moderate expenditure, and, therefore, afford to all those who are in easy circumstances an opportunity to acquire a taste for diamonds, yet those of a larger size are, and ever have been, rather rare; and of those which are celebrated for their size and beauty, the whole number, at least in Europe, scarcely amounts to half-a-dozen, all of them being in the possession of sovereign princes. Hence, the acquisition even of a moderately large diamond is what mere money cannot always command: and many are the favours, both political and of other kinds, for which a diamond of a large size, or of uncommon beauty, may be offered as a compensation, where its commercial price in money neither can be tendered, nor would be received. In many circumstances, also, it is a matter of no small importance for a person to have a considerable part of his property in the most
portable form possible; and in this respect what is there that can be compared to diamonds, which possess the portability, without the risk, of bills of exchange? It may further be remarked in favour of this species of property, that it is but little liable to fluctuation, and has gone on pretty regularly increasing in value, insomuch that the price of stones of good quality is considerably higher than it was some years ago.
The art of cutting and polishing diamonds has a twofold object : first, to divide the natural surface of the stone in a symmetrical manner, by means of highly-polished polygonal planes, and thus to bring out to the best advantage the wonderful refulgence of this beautiful gem; and secondly, by cutting out such flaws as may happen to be near the surface, to remove those blemishes which materially detract from its beauty, and consequently from its value. The removal of flaws is a matter of great importance; for, owing to the form in which the diamond is cut, and its high degree of refrangibility, the smallest fault is magnified, and becomes obtrusively visible on every face. For this reason also, it is by no means an easy matter at all times to ascertain whether a flaw is or is not superficial; and a person with a correct and well-practised eye may often purchase to great advantage stones which appear to be flawed quite through, but are, in fact, only superficially
The most esteemed, and at the same time rarest colour of the oriental ruby, is pure carmine, or blood-red of considerable intensity, forming, when well polished, a blaze of the most exquisite and unrivalled tint. It is, however, more or less pale, and mixed with blue in various proportions; hence it occurs rose-red and reddish-white, crimson, peach-blossom-red, and lilac-blue, the latter variety being named oriental amethyst. It is a native of Pegu, and is said to be found in the sand of certain streams near the town of Serian, the capital of that country; it also occurs, with sapphire, in the sands of the rivers of Ceylon. A ruby perfect, both in colour and transparency, is much less common than a good diamond, and when of the weight of three or four carats, is even more valuable than that gem. The King of Pegu and the monarchs of Ava and Siam, monopolise the finest rubies, in the same way as the sovereigns of India make a monopoly of diamonds. The finest ruby in the world is in the possession of the first of these kings; its purity has passed into a proverb, and its worth, when compared with gold, is inestimable. The Subah of the Deccan, also, is in possession of a prodigiously fine one, a full inch in diameter. The princes of Europe cannot boast of any of a first-rate magnitude.
The oriental sapphire ranks next in value to the ruby: when perfect, its colour is a clear and bright Prussian blue, united to a high degree of transparency. The asterias, or star-stone, is a remarkable variety of this beautiful gem; it is semi-transparent, with a reddish-purple tinge.-From Mawe's work on Precious Stones. THE REINDEER'S PLAGUE.
Ir is only during winter that these animals enjoy any comfort, as even moderate cold is insufficient for their nature. The great heat of their northern summer subjects them to much pain, and brings with it their special plague in the form of a gadfly (estrus tarandi). Linnæus, in his "Flora Lapponica," describes the mode in which this insect tortures the reindeer. About the beginning of July the latter shed their coats, at which time the hair on the back is erect. The oestrus flutters the whole day over the herd, and takes the opportunity of dropping on them an egg, scarcely the size of a mustard-seed. The state of the coat at this season favours its admission, and, protected by the heat of the part, a larva is produced, that finds its way into the flesh, and continues there the winter, increasing to the bulk of an acorn. As the warm weather comes on, it becomes restive, and worries the poor animals almost to madness, till it has eaten its way through the skin. Six or eight of these tormentors, and sometimes even more, fall to the share of each deer; the young ones, after their first winter, are most subject to their attacks, and Linnæus adds, that a third or fourth part of the calves fall victims to this complaint, which is known among the inhabitants by the name of kurbma. As soon as an oestrus is observed fluttering about, the greatest confusion exhibits itself in the herd; they fly from the obnoxious insect, running against the wind, and driving from them any unfortunate individual who has received the unlucky windfall. While suffering under the irritation of the gnawing, they rush madly into the sea, and feel some relief while under water. On this account, many of the Laplanders keep near the shores of the Icy Sea during the summer, and only return to the interior about September. A Winter in Lapland and Iceland.