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While the trees are leafless,
While the fields are bare,
Buttercups and daisies

Spring up here and there.
"Ere the snow-drop peepeth,
Ere the crocus bold,
Ere the early primrose
Opes its paly gold,
Somewhere on a sunny bank
Buttercups are bright;
Somewhere 'mong the frozen grass
Peeps the daisy white.

"Little hardy flowers,

Like to children poor,
Playing in their sturdy health,
By their mother's door :
Purple with the north wind,

Yet alert and bold;
Fearing not and caring not,
Though they be a-cold.

"What to them is weather?

What are stormy showers?
Buttercups and daisies,

Are these human flowers?
He who gave them hardship
And a life of care,
Gave them likewise hardy strength,
And patient hearts, to bear.
"Welcome, yellow buttercups,
Welcome, daisies white,
Ye are in my spirit
Visioned, a delight!
Coming ere the spring time,
Of sunny hours to tell-
Speaking to our hearts of HIM
Who doeth all things well."

A number of pretty wood engravings enrich the volume and render it still more enticing to the eye of taste. It will be with eagerness that a twelvemonth hence its successor will be sought after, if life and health be vouchsafed to the gifted authoress. Long may she live, and many additions may she make to the Christmas Library; it is a work well adapted for every season in the year.


Friendship's Offering" abides strictly by its original plan; and it is one of the very oldest of the Annual family. It maintains, besides, its wonted steady course, being more celebrated for its literary matter than its engravings. There is a great variety of talent displayed in the present volume; both the tender and the

lordly sex contributing to its pages. Miss Roberts, in her " Blacksmith of Liege," relates an admirable story; it is quite remarkable for the vividness and boldness of its pictures. Perhaps "Charlotte de Montmorenci," by Miss Strickland, will be still more highly prized by the majority of readers. Mr. Leitch Ritchie's "Great-great-grandfather," is an absorbing legend. But we cannot particularize the names of all the writers, nor the titles of all their papers. We quote a poem by Thomas Miller, entitled "The Desolate Hall," which is in his best manner.

"A lonely hall upon a lonelier moor,

For many a mile no other dwelling near;
Northward an ancient wood, whose tall trees roar,

When the loud winds their huge broad branches tear.
A large old hall-a servant deaf and gray,
On me in silence waits, throughout the dreary day.
Before my threshold waves the long white grass,
That like a living desolation stands,
Nodding its withered head whene'er I pass,

The last sad heir of these broad barren lands,-
The last within the old vault to repose;
Then its dark marble door upon our race will close.
The whining wind sweeps o'er the matted floors,
And makes a weary noise, a wailing moan;
I hear all night the clap of broken doors,

That on their rusty hinges grate and groan;
And then loud voices seem to call behind

The worn and wormy wainscot flapping in the wind.
Along the roof the dark moss thickly spreads,

A dampness o'er the oaken-rafters throwing;
A chilly moisture settles on the beds,

Where lichens 'mid decay are slowly growing,
Covering the curtains, and the damask eyes
Of angels, there enwrought in rainbow-fading dyes.
The toothless mastiff-bitch howls all night long,
And in her kennel sleepeth all the day;

I heard the old man say, 'There's something wrong,
She was not want to yell, and howl that way,-
There's something wrong. Oh! ill, and wo betide
The leech's hand by which my Lady Ellen died.'
Sometimes I hear-or fancy-o'er my head

A trampling noise-like that of human feet;
In hollow high-heeled shoes they seem to tread,
And to the sound of solemn music beat:
Then with a crash the window-shutters close,
Shaking the crazy walls, and breaking my repose.
The silver-moth within the wardrobe feeds;

The unturned keys are rusted in the locks

Upon my hearth the brown mouse safely breeds;
By the old fountain fearless sleeps the fox;
The white owl in my chamber dreams all day,
For there is no one cares to frighten him away.
The high-piled books with cobwebs are o'ergrown,
Their gaudy bindings now look dull and dead;
Last night the massy Bible tumbled down,

And it laid open where my Ellen read
The night she died: I knew the place again,
For she shed many a tear, and each had left its stain.
Oh! how I shun the room in which she died,

The books, the flowers, the harp she well could sound,
The flowers are dead, the books are thrown aside,

The harp is mute, and dust has gathered round
Her lovely drawings-covering o'er the chair
Where she so oft has sat, to braid her long brown hair.
What hollow gusts through broken casements stream,
Moving the ancient portraits on the wall!
I see them stirring by the moon's pale beam,

Their floating costumes seems to rise and fall;
And as I come or go, move where I will,
Their dull white deadly eyes, turning, pursue me still.
And when a dreamy slumber o'er me creeps,

The old house-clock rings out its measured sound,
I hear a warning in the march it keeps;

Anon the rusty vane turns round and round:
These are sad tones, for desolation calls,
And ruin loudly roars around my fathers' halls.
The fish-ponds now are mantled o'er with green,
The rooks have left their old ancestral trees;
Their silent nests are all that now is seen;

No oxen lowing o'er the winding leas;
No steeds neighs out, no flocks bleat from the fold;
Upland, and hill, and vale, are empty, brown, and cold.
And dance, and song, within these walls have sounded,
And breathing music rolled in dulcet strains;
And lovely feet have o'er these gray stones bounded,
In snowy kirtles and embroidered trains :

Such things have been, and now are gliding past,
And then our race is done :-I live, and die,-the last!"

A "Night Sketch taken from Newgate," by Barry Cornwall, strikes us as the noblest piece of poetry in the volume. It is stern and passionate utterance of a true poet's bitterest mood, and deserves to live in the choicest collections. The writer is wandering through the city

"And, look!-where the street-beggar crawleth,
His wallet empty by his side,

Scarching for what the dog disdaineth,
For what the alms-house boys deride.
What use?-The rich man sings and passes,
And gains no lesson for his pride.
Upon yon step, as pale as Famine,
Half-clad, unfed, unsheltered, worn,
Sleeps one whose voice once mocked the river,
Whose eyes (sweet eyes!) outshone the morn:
Yet the lady and her lovely daughter

Shoot from their chariot looks of scorn.

And, lo! unto the workhouse table

A dead old man is borne away,
Met by a hoary churchman, counting
The value of his tithes to-day.
He sees no grave gaping beside him—
He sees not he is old and gray!
Where falls the moral?-Gentles, say!
Awake! thou Storm that send'st thy thunders
Into the darkness of the night!

Burst on our ears! Spout forth thy lightnings,
And fill our insolent minds with light!

Burn on our brain Heaven's mighty lessons,
And force us from the wrong to right!"

The beggar narrates the particulars of his hard lot, and is then asked-"Where dwell'st thou ?" to which he answers,

"Near this den of stone

I like to live: I scarce know why;
For oft the prisoners shriek. At times,
Indeed, I more contented lie,
Hearing of woes more deep than mine:
And then I pray for those about to die!"
The poet then proceeds-

"Man, thou do'st well. "Tis well, 'tis wise,
Comfort from any source to glean.
Unclasp thy heart, and bid Compassion

Enter, and dwell from morn 'till e'en.
"Twill change, like suns in cold spring weather,
The barren to a bounteous scene.

He who 'the right' doth think and do,
Need seldom in the bad world sigh.
Power hath he over his own heart,

The first spot underneath the sky.
Here's gold. Go laugh; and heed no more
How idiot Folly stalketh by.
Whether the ostrich tail be seen

Flaunting about from side to side,
Or tinsel toy, or ribbon gawd

In blue or bloody colour dyed,—

Content thee. Learn, whate'er its name,

That Pride is still no more than Pride."

"The Oriental Annual" has always appeared to us to be one of the most valuable of the tribe, and to have possessed an advantage over several of them, in having something like a definite and characteristic field to occupy. In point of binding, gilding, and ornament, it has hitherto been gorgeous, while its plates are always in a firstrate style, and eminently illustrative of the glorious East. The volume before us now, we are inclined to think, excels in these particulars its predecessors, unless it be that what is present to the eye is more attractive than what dwells in the memory. According to our usual procedure, we do not labour to convey a minute description of the illustrations, knowing that all such attempts are feeble, in the absence of the pictures themselves. We may mention, however, that an Elephant fight is rendered with frightful effect, and impresses the mind with an idea of ferocity and violence, which we think no language can ever communicate.

The Rev. Author, in his part of the work, pursues his accustomed method of mingling biographical notices, descriptions of particular scenes or events, and stories illustrative of Oriental life, with affecting accounts of fanaticism and superstition, and other topics concerning the social condition of the natives, and their interests here and hereafter. Our only extract gives a spirited description of certain combats between the fiercest animals that can be found. After the creatures have been caught, they are often kept alive to provide sport for the people. To render the exhibition more striking and ferocious they are starved for some time previous to its occurrence, when hunger independent of their violent nature creates a dreadful voracity. Alligators, for example, are described as being kept in tanks, having a strong iron wire passed several times round their long muzzles, and so tightened as to keep the jaws close, thus preventing them from tasting solid food.

"During my residence in India I once saw, in a small tank, two alligators, the jaws of which had been fastened as just described, for a period, as it was said, of more than two months. They were caught, dragged upon the bank, where, the iron ligatures being cut, they were immediately released, and feeling their freedom, both plunged with equal eagerness into the water. As they had been for some weeks companions in suffering, neither manifested a disposition to commence hostilities, but occupied different parts of the tank, sinking to the bottom, and occasionally thrusting their noses above the surface to take breath. The water did not exceed five feet in depth, so that unless they kept the middle of the tank they might be seen as they lay at the bottom almost immovable. Though the place was crowded with spectators, the huge reptiles did not appear to be disturbed by so unusual a concourse, and even occasionally bore to be poked with a long pole before they would move from the mud in which

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