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How rich the Peacock! what bright glories run
Job xxxix, 13, The Peacock appears to be a native of India, whence it was introduced into this country. From that country, too, it was taken to Persia, and from one of these imported into Palestine, in the days of Solomon. When the bird appears with its tail expanded, its showy plumage represents the greatest variety of shades; and scarcely any creature makes a more gaudy display tban it does at those times. The form of the peacock also is extremely elegant, as its feathers are varied with the most pleasing tints and shades. Yet, as a counterpoise to all this elegance of shape, and gaiety of adorning, the voice is the most harsh and disagreeable in nature; and so loud, that it may be heard at the distance of two or three miles. The head, neck, and breast of the Peacock, are of a lovely blue colour; the back and upper part of the wings are light ash, mixed with black stripes, and on its head it carries a most elegant plume of small greenish feathers. The appetite of the Peacock is said to be most gluttonous and insatiable; whilst it is committing constant depradations wherever it can gain
It is bred, we believe, solely for ornament, in this country, for the sake of its gay clothing, rather than for its valuable services, and it is, therefore, generally found attached to the mansions and grounds of the rich, where its most discordant voice is heard and tolerated. The Peacock was, at one time, considered as the greatest delicacy that could be brought to the tables of the rich and great. This practice has long been discontinued, and it is seen upon the table only at an Alderman's or Lord Mayor's feast, where also it is found, we apprehend, more for show and sound, than for auy desirable pur
pose of food.
Peacocks are found in their native state in Java and the Ceylon Isles, where vast flocks of them are still seen vaunting in all their beauty. There are several varieties of the Peacock. Some are crested, and others are white. That which is known as the Peacock of Thibet is allowed to be the most beautiful of the feathered race. Its colours are a mixture of blue, yellow, red, and green, all blended with the most artificial exactness, and forming the most pleasing combination to the sight. In this country, the peahen seldom lays more than six eggs; though, in its native clime, it generally lays twelve before it attempts to sit. This is a time of great secrecy and solicitude to the female, as she is obliged to conceal herself and nest from the male, to prevent his disturbing her, or destroying her eggs. In Cambaya, a province of the Great Mogul, in India, travellers assert, that whole flocks of them overspread the fields; but there, as in this country, they are shy and timid, and hide themselves in hedges, if a human form appear. Like other birds of the poultry kind, the peacock principally feeds upon corn; but barley is considered as its favourite grain. Insects and tender plants are eagerly sought after, if it does not find a sufficiency of its accustomed food. In such cases, it will lay waste the labours of the gardener,
all his choicest seeds, and nip the buds of his most curious flowers. The peacock is reported to live about twenty years, and the
plumage attains to the zenith of its beauty in the third year of its age.
We see, from this bird, how wisely the God of nature and providence balances the favourable and unfavourable traits in the character and history of the irrational as well as the rational tribes; giving to one what he withholds from another, that there be no idolatrous adulation of the one, and no unfeeling and inhuman neglect of the other. If God had given to the Peacock the voice of the nightingale, instead of its own dissonant and hoarse bawling, or the domestic habits and intrinsic value of the barn door fowls, instead of its own habits and uselessness, it would have destroyed the balance that is now kept up in the creation; whilst, as it is, we find something to admire in every creature, but nothing to adore in such a mixture of attractions and repulsions. Such is the balance maintained amongst our own Some have an elegant form and gay clothing, whilst they are destitute of all the beauties of the heart and mind; and those in possession of inward excellencies, are like the nightingale, perhaps, having nothing in their person, clothing, or circumstances, to attract our notice. Of course, there is no comparison between qualities that are really valuable to ourselves and useful to others, and those which are merely accidental, or of an ornamental character ; though the latter, like the plumage of the peacock, are generally
A SPRING MORNING.
the most showy and attractive, and, by little minds, are most sought after, yet,
“Honour and Virtue, Truth and Grace,
These are the robes of richest dress."
A SPRING MORNING. The shades of night are now disappearing, and the dawning day discloses a new world to our view. It gradually grows lighter, but nature has yet to present her noblest object. If we look toward the east, we shall see the sky covered with beautiful purple streaks; and soft fleecy clouds, tinged with gold, lie pillowed around. Soon, they glow with various brilliant colours, announcing the approach of the King of Day. Let us watch for a moment, and he will appear !
Now the first ray has touched the mountain tops ; and others are darting like lightning over the
See, he arises! and comes forth in majestic glory. At his presence all things rejoice; the animal creation shakes off its slumbers, and rises to enjoy his cheering warmth : insects innumerable spring into life and glitter in his beams: a thousand warblers welcome his approach: blossoms and powers expaud, and throw forth their virgin fragrance on the gentle breeze: and liveliest and gayest of all, the lark loudly sings bis matin song as he rises to the sky, which
“Looks pure as the Spirit that made it." Beautilul fields, verdant groves, and blooming