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being as black as in a peat-bog. The accumulation of vegetable matter going on here in a hot climate, over so vast an area, is a subject of such high geological interest, that I shall relate what I learnt of this singular morass. It is one enormous quagmire, soft and muddy, except where the surface is rendered partially firm by a covering of vegetables and their matted roots; yet, strange to say, instead of being lower than the level of the surrounding country, it is actually higher than nearly all the firm and dry land which encompasses it, and, to make the anomaly complete, in spite of its semi-fluid character, it is higher in the interior than towards its margin.

hatchets found in our peat-bogs, afford an insight into the rude arts and manners of the earliest inhabitants of our island; the buried coin fixes the date of the reign of some Roman emperor; the ancient encampment indicates the districts once occupied by invading armies, and the former method of constructing military defences; the Egyptian mummies throw light on the art of embalming, the rites of sepulture, or the average stature of the human race in ancient Egypt. This class of memorials yields to no other in authenticity, but it constitutes a small part only of the resources on which the historian relies, whereas in geology it forms the only kind of evidence which is at our command. For this reason we must not expect to The only exceptions to both these stateobtain a full and connected account of ments is found on the eastern side, where, any series of events beyond the reach of for the distance of about twelve or fifteen history. But the testimony of geological miles, the streams flow from slightly elemonuments, if frequently imperfect, pos-vated but higher land, and supply all its sesses at least the advantage of being free from all suspicion of misrepresentation. We may be deceived in the inferences which we draw, in the same manner as we often mistake the nature and import of phenomena observed in the daily course of nature, but our liability to erring firm ground. This fact is also conis confined to the interpretation, and, if this be correct, our information is certain.


THERE are many swamps or morasses in this low, flat region, and one of the largest of these occurs between the towns of Norfolk and Weldon. We travelled several miles of its northern extremity on the railway, which is supported on piles. It bears the appropriate and very expressive name of the "Great Dismal," and is no less than forty miles in length from north to south, and twenty-five miles in its greatest width from east to west, the northern half being situated in Virginia, the southern in North Carolina. I observed that the water was obviously in motion in several places, and the morass had somewhat the appearance of a broad inundated river-plain, covered with all kinds of aquatic trees and shrubs, the soil


abundant and overflowing water.
wards the north, the east, and the south,
the waters flow from the swamp to differ-
ent rivers, which give abundant evidence,
by the rate of their descent, that the
Great Dismal is higher than the surround-

firmed by the measurements made in levelling for the railway from Portsmouth to Suffolk, and for two canals cut through different parts of the morass, for the sake of obtaining timber. The railway itself, when traversing the Great Dismal, is literally higher than when on the land some miles distant on either side, and is six to seven feet higher than where it passes over dry ground near to Suffolk and Portsmouth. Upon the whole, the centre of the morass seems to lie more than twelve feet above the flat country round it. If the streams which now flow in from the west, had for ages been bringing down black fluid mire instead of water, over the firm subsoil, we might suppose the ground so inundated as to have acquired its present configuration. Some small ridges, however, of land must have existed in the original plain or basin, for these now rise like low islands in various places above the general surface. But the streams to the westward do not bring

down liquid mire, and are not charged with any sediment. The soil of the swamp is formed of vegetable matter, usually without any admixture of earthly particles. We have here, in fact, a deposit of peat from ten to fifteen feet in thickness, in a latitude where, owing to the heat of the sun and length of the summer, no peat-mosses like those of Europe would be looked for under ordinary circumstances.

In countries like Scotland and Ireland, where the climate is damp, and the summer short and cool, the natural vegetation of one year does not rot away during the next in moist situations. If water flows into such land it is absorbed, and promotes the vigorous growth of mosses and other aquatic plants, and when they die, the same water arrests their putrefaction. But, as a general rule, no such accumulation of peat can take place in a country like that of Virginia, where the summer's heat causes annually as large a quantity of dead plants to decay as is equal in amount to the vegetable matter produced in one year.

There are many trees and shrubs in the region of the Pine Barrens (and the same may be said of the United States generally) which, like our willows, flourish luxuriantly in water. The juniper trees, or white cedar (Cupressus thyoides), stand firmly in the softest part of the quagmire, supported by their long tap-roots, and afford, with many other evergreens, a dark shade, under which a multitude of ferns, reeds, and shrubs, from nine to eighteen feet high, and a thick carpet of mosses, four or five inches high, spring up, and are protected from the rays of the sun. When these are most powerful, the large cedar (Cupressus districha), and many other deciduous trees are in full leaf. The black soil formed beneath this shade, to which the mosses and the leaves make annual additions, does not perfectly resemble the peat of Europe, most of the plants being so decayed as to leave little more than soft black mud, without any traces of organization. This loose soil is called sponge by the labourers; and it has been ascertained that, when exposed

to the sun, and thrown out on the bank of a canal, where clearings have been made, it rots entirely away. Hence it is evident that it owes its preservation in the swamp to moisture and the shade of the dense foliage. The evaporation continually going on in the wet spongy soil during summer cools the air and generates a temperature resembling that of a more northern climate, or a region more elevated above the level of the sea.

Numerous trunks of large and tall trees lie buried in the black mire of the morass. In so loose a soil they are easily overthrown by winds, and nearly as many have been found lying beneath the surface of the peaty soil, as standing erect upon it. When thrown down, they are soon covered by water, and keeping wet, they never decompose, except the sap-wood, which is less than an inch thick. Much of the timber is obtained by sounding a foot or two below the surface, and it is sawn into planks while half under water.

The Great Dismal has been described as being highest towards its centre. Here, however, there is an extensive lake of an oval form, seven miles long and more than five wide, the depth where greatest, fifteen feet; and its bottom, consisting of mud like the swamp, but sometimes with a pure white sand, a foot deep, covering the mud. The water is transparent, though tinged of a pale brown colour, like that of our peat-mosses, and contains abundance of fish. This sheet of water is usually even with its banks, on which a thick and tall forest grows. There is no beach, for the bank sinks perpendicularly, so that if the waters are lowered several feet, it makes no alteration in the breadth of the lake.

Much timber has been cut down and carried out from the swamp by means of canals, which are perfectly straight for long distances, with the trees on each side arching over, and almost joining their branches across, so that they throw a dark shade on the water, which of itself looks black, being coloured as before mentioned. When the boats emerge from the gloom of these avenues into the lake,

the scene is said to be "as beautiful as fairy land."

The bears inhabiting the swamp climb trees in search of acorns and gum-berries, breaking off large boughs of the oaks in order to draw the acorns near to them. These same bears are said to kill hogs, and even cows. There are also wild cats, and occasionally a solitary wolf, in the


verted into pure coal, are occasionally met with, and erect fossil trees are observed in the overlying strata, terminating downwards in seams of coal.-Travels in North America.



THE HEBREW RACE. That the ancient seams of coal were produced for the most part by terrestrial "You never observe a great intellecplants of all sizes, not drifted but growing tual movement in Europe in which the on the spot, is a theory more and more Jews do not greatly participate. generally adopted in modern times; and first Jesuits were Jews: that mysterious the growth of what is called sponge in Russian diplomacy which so alarms Westsuch a swamp, and in such a climate as ern Europe is organised and principally the Great Dismal, already covering so carried on by Jews; that mighty revolumany square miles of a low level region, tion which is at this moment preparing in bordering the sea, and capable of spread- Germany, and which will be, in fact, a ing itself indefinitely over the adjacent second and greater reformation, and of country, helps us greatly to conceive the which so little is as yet known in England, manner in which the coal of the ancient is entirely developing under the auspices carboniferous rocks may have been formed. of Jews, who almost monopolise the proThe heat, perhaps, may not have been fessorial chairs of Germany. Neander, excessive when the coal measures origi- the founder of spiritual Christianity, and nated, but the entire absence of frost, who is regius professor of divinity in the with a warm and damp atmosphere, may university of Berlin, is a Jew. Benary, have enabled tropical forms to flourish in equally famous, and in the same univerlatitudes far distant from the line. Huge sity, is a Jew. Wehl, the Arabic proswamps in a rainy climate, standing above fessor of Heidelberg, is a Jew. Years the level of the surrounding firm land, ago, when I was in Palestine, I met a and supporting a dense forest, may have German student who was accumulating spread far and wide, invading the plains, materials for the history of Christianity, like some European peat-mosses when and studying the genius of the place; a they burst, and the frequent submergence modest and learned man. It was Wehl; of these masses of vegetable matter be- then unknown, since become the first neath seas or estuaries, as often as the Arabic scholar of the day, and the author land sank down during subterranean of the life of Mahommed. But for the movements, may have given rise to the German professors of this race, their deposition of strata of mud, sand, or name is Legion. I think there are more limestone, immediately upon the veget- than ten at Berlin alone. I told you just able matter. The conversion of succes- now that I was going up to town to-morsive surfaces into dry land, where other row, because I always made it a rule to swamps supporting trees may have formed, interpose when affairs of state were on the might give origin to a continued series of carpet. Otherwise, I never interfere. I coal measures of great thickness. In hear of peace and war in newspapers, but some kinds of coal the vegetable texture I am never alarmed, except when I am is apparent throughout under the micro-informed that the sovereigns want treascope; in others, it has only partially disappeared; but even in this coal, the flattened trunks of trees of the genera Lepidodendron Sigillaria, and others, con

sure; then I know that monarchs are serious. A few years back we were applied to by Russia. Now, there has been no friendship between the court of


St. Petersburg and my family. It has equalled-deeds of divine patriotism that
Dutch connections which have generally Athens, and Sparta, and Carthage have
supplied it, and our representations in never excelled-we have endured fifteen
favour of the Polish Hebrews, a nume-hundred years of supernatural slavery;
rous race, but the most suffering and during which, every device that can de-
degraded of all the tribes, has not been grade or destroy man has been the destiny
very agreeable to the czar. However, that we have sustained and baffled.
circumstances drew to an approximation Hebrew child has entered adolescence
between the Romanoffs and the Sidonias. only to learn that he was the Pariah of
I resolved to go myself to St. Petersburg. that ungrateful Europe that owes to him
I had on my arrival an interview with the the best part of its laws, a fine portion of
Russian minister of finance, Count Can- its literature, all its religion. Great poets
crin; I beheld the son of a Lithuanian require a public; we have been content
Jew. The loan was connected with the with the immortal melodies that we sung
affairs of Spain; I resolved on repairing more than two thousand years ago by the
to Spain from Russia. I travelled with-waters of Babylon and wept. They record
out intermission. I had an audience im-
mediately on my arrival with the Spanish
minister, Senor Mendizabel; I beheld one
like myself, the son of a Nuovo Christiano,
a Jew of Aragon. In consequence of
what transpired at Madrid, I went straight
to Paris, to consult the president of the
French council; I beheld the son of a
French Jew, a hero, an imperial marshal,
and very properly so, for who should be
military heroes if not those who worship
the Lord of hosts?" "And is Soult a He-
brew?" "
Yes, and several of the French
marshals, and the most famous : Massena,
for example-his real name was Manas-
seh. But to my anecdote. The conse-
sequence of our consultations was, that
some northern power should be applied
to in a friendly and mediative capacity.
We fixed on Prussia, and the president of
the council made an application to the
Prussian minister, who attended a few
days after our conference. Count Arnim
entered the cabinet, and I beheld a Prus-
sian Jew. So you see, my dear Coningsby,
that the world is governed by very dif-
ferent personages to what is imagined by
those who are not behind the scenes.
Favoured by nature and by nature's God,
we produced the lyre of David; we gave
you Isaiah and Ezekiel; they are our
Olynthians, our Philippics. Favoured by
nature we still remain; but in exact pro-
portion as we have been favoured by
nature, we have been persecuted by man.
After a thousand struggles-after acts of
heroic courage that Rome has never

our triumphs; they solace our affliction.
Great orators are the creatures of popular
assemblies; we were permitted only by
stealth to meet even in our temples. And
as for great writers, the catalogue is not
blank. What are all the school-men,
Aquinas himself, to Maimonides? and as
for modern philosophy, all springs from
Spinoza! But the passionate and crea-
tive genius that is the nearest link to
divinity, and which no human tyranny
can destroy, though it can divert it; that
should have stirred the hearts of nations
by its inspired sympathy, or governed
senates by its burning eloquence, has
found a medium for its expression, to
which, in spite of your prejudices and
your evil passions, you have been obliged
to bow. The ear, the voice, the fancy
teeming with combinations-the imagina-
tion fervent with picture and emotion,
that came from Caucasus, and which we
have preserved unpolluted—have endowed
us with almost the exclusive privilege of
music; that science of harmonious sounds
which the ancients recognised as most
divine, and deified in the person of their
most beautiful creation. I speak not of
the past; though were I to enter into the
history of the lords of melody, you would
find it the annals of Hebrew genius. But
at this moment even, musical Europe is
ours. There is not a company of singers,
not an orchestra in a single capital, that
are not crowded with our children, under
the feigned names which they adopt to
conciliate the dark aversion which your

posterity will some day disclaim with shame and disgust. Almost every great composer, skilled musician, almost every voice that ravishes you with its transporting strains, spring from our tribes. The catalogue is too vast to enumerate; too illustrious to dwell for a moment on

secondary names, however eminent. Enough for us that the three great creative minds, to whose exquisite inventions all nations at this moment yield-Rossini, Meyerbeer, Mendelssohn-are of Hebrew race; and little do your men of fashion, your "Muscadins" of Paris, and your dandies of London, as they thrill into raptures at the notes of a Pasta or a Grisi, little do they suspect that they are offering homage to the sweet singers of Israel."-Coningsby.

[MRS. J. H. RIDDELL.] THE GHOSTS OF LONG AGO. THE ghosts of the long ago-laid and buried, as you fancied, years and years since, friends,—though your present sight may fail to discern them, they are travelling with you still, a ghastly company. While you drive in your carriage along life's smoothest turnpike-roads, or pace, footsore and weary, over the flinty by-paths of existence, past events are skipping on beside you, mocking, jeering, at your profound self-delusion. Shall fleet steeds leave them behind? Shall liveried servants keep them at bay? Shall an unsuccessful existence, drawing to a still more unsuccessful close, be able to purchase their forbearance? Nay, invisible now, they shall be visible some day; voiceless, they shall yet find tongues; despised, they shall rear their head and hiss at you; forgotten, they shall reappear with more strength than at their first birth; and when the evil day comes, and your power and your energy, and your youth and your hope, have gone, they shall pour the overflowing drop into your cup, they shall mingle fennel with your wine, they shall pile the last straw on your back, they shall render wealth valueless and life a burden; they shall make poverty more bitter, and

add another pain to that which already racks you; they shall break the breaking heart, and make you turn your changed face to the wall, and gather up your feet into your bed, and pray to be delivered from your tormentors by your God, who alone knows all. Wherefore, young man, if you would ensure a peaceful old age, be careful of the acts of each day of your youth; for with youth the deeds thereof are not to be left behind. They are detectives, keener and more unerring than ever the hand of sensational novelist depicted; they will dog you from the day you sinned till the hour your trial comes off. You are prosperous, you are great, you are "beyond the world," as I have heard people say, meaning the power or the caprice thereof; but you are not beyond the power of events. Whatever you may think now, they are only biding their time; and when you are weak and at their mercy, when the world you fancied you were beyond has leisure to hear their story and scoff at you, they will come forward and tell all the bitter tale. And if you take it one way, you will bluster and bully, and talk loud, and silence society before your face, if you fail to still its tattle behind your back; while if you take it another way, you will bear the scourging silently, and cover up the marks of the lash as best you may, and go home and close your door, and sit there alone with your misery, decently and in order, till you die.-A Life's Assize.



AMONG the stories in the Arabian Nights which first fixes the attention of most people, is that of the merchant who understood the language of animals. And 66 In Æsop's a delightful story it is. Fables," also, where the beasts and the birds talk to each other and to mankind, no reader, who has a proper faith in what he reads, is in the least degree surprised at the sagacity which the animals display and put into the most natural language

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