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and dark still holes, and in all bending and still parts of rivers; and in the back-water of mill-streams, as well as in deep, gentle eddies; in ponds, about sluices, and the mouths of outlets and flood-gates, on the gravel or sandy parts of the pond, and near the sides where rushes grow. The back and sides of perch are so thickly covered with small scales as almost to form a coat of mail. They are slow in growth, and seldom exceed three or four pounds in weight; but one was taken out of the Serpentine river which weighed nine pounds!
The Bleak, or bley, is found in the rivers Thames, Lea, and New River, in immense numbers. They are a handsome fish, but do not grow to a large size, and are taken by the angler from March till winter.
The Diary of the appearances of Nature in this month is, like the intervals of fine weather in November, brief indeed, and may be told in a few lines. The Virginia-creeper has now a very rich and beautiful appearance. Mushrooms are collected in abundance this month : see T.T. for 1825, p. 201. The congregating of small birds, which was noticed as commencing in October, still continues; and the longtailed titmouse is seen in troops in the tall' hedgerows. The slock-dove, one of the latest winter birds of passage, arrives from more northern regions towards the end of this month.
The Wings of the Dove.
(By Mrs. Hemans.] Oh, for thy wings, thou dove!
Now sailing by with sunshine on thy breast, That, borne like thee above,
I too might flee away, and be at rest! Where wilt thou fold those plumes,
Bird of the forest shadows, holiest bird ? In what rich leafy glooms,
By the sweet voice of hidden water stirred? Over wbat blessed home,
What roof with dark, deep summer foliage crowned, O fair as Ocean's foam !
Shall thy bright bosom shed a gleam around? Or seek'st thou some old shrine
Of nymph or saint no more by votary wooed, Though still, as if divine,
Breathing a spirit o'er the solitude? Yet wherefore ask thy way?
Blest, ever blest, whate'er its aim, thou art! Unto the greenwood spray
Bearing no dark remembrance at thy heart. No echoes that will blend
A sadness with the rustlings of the grove ; No memory of a friend
Far off, or dead, or changed to thee, thou dove! Oh, to some cool recess,
Take, take me with thee on the summer wind ! Leaving the weariness
And all the fever of this life behind ;The aching and the void
Within the heart whereunto none reply, The early hopes destroyed
Bird ! bear me with thee through the sunny sky. Wild wish, and longing vain,
And brief upspringing to be glad and free,Go to thy woodland reign!
My soul is bound and held-I may not flee. For even by all the fears
And thoughts that haunt my dreams-untold, unknown, And by the woman's tears
Poured from mine eyes in silence and alone; Had I thy wings, thou dove!
High midst the gorgeous isles of cloud to soar, Soon the strong cords of love Would draw me earthwards--homewards-yet once more.
Literary Souvenir, 1828.
THIS month was named, like the preceding ones, from the place it held in the Romulean calendar. Capricorn is the sign given to it.
The head of a Triton, on each side of which is a Cupid riding on a dol. phin, in the Gallery of Antiquities at the British Museam, Room I, No. 5.
*3. 1827.-JOSEPH PLANTA DIED, ÆT. 83, Principal Librarian of the British Museum, which honourable and important office he had beld for the long period of twentyeight years. Mr. Planta was born in the Grisons in Swisserland, February 21, 1744, being descended from a noble family in that country. His father, the Rev. Andrew Planta, resided in England from the year 1752, as minister of the German Reformed Church in London; and under him Mr. Planta received the first part of his education. It was completed afterwards in foreign seminaries ; at Utrecht, under the learned and well-known Professor Saxius and others, for a short time, and at Göttingen. He also took early opportunities of visiting France and Italy, with a view to add the knowledge of those languages to that of German, which he already possessed. Being thus qualified for the diplomatic line, he gladly accepted the employment of Secretary to the British Minister at Brussels. In this course he would probably have proceeded with success, had not the early demise of his father, in 1773, recalled him to the care of his widowed mother and family. Mr. Planta, sen. had been honoured with the task of instructing Queen Charlotte in the Italian language; which probably facilitated the appointment of his son, soon after bis death, to the office of Assistant Librarian in the British Museum,
where, in 1775, he was promoted to be one of the under Librarians. In 1774, he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society, and soon after, by the recommendation of the President(Sir Job Pringle), was appointed to conduct the foreign correspondence of the Society. In 1776, he was chosen one of the ordinary Secretaries of the Society, on the death of Dr. Maty;
having already distinguished himself by a learned and curious memoir on the Romansh language, spoken in tbe Grisons. This, though a philological tract, received the peculiar honour of being inserted in the Transactions of the Society. After this, by the resignation of Dr. (afterwards Bishop) Horsley, Mr. Planta became the senior Secretary; in which situation it was a part of his duty to draw up abstracts of all the communications made to the Society, to be read before the members attending their public meetings. This task be performed with the utmost accuracy and perspicuity for upwards of twenty years.
In June 1778, Mr. Planta was united in marriage to Miss Elizabeth Atwood, a lady of no common merits and accomplishments, whose death, in 182 1, proved the first interruption to his domestic happiness. In 1788, he was appointed Paymaster of Exchequer Bills, which office he held till bis voluntary resignation of it in 1811. On the death of Dr. Morton, in 1799,
Mr. Planta was appointed by his late Majesty to succeed him in the honourable office of Principal Librarian to the British Mu
When the Swiss Republics appeared to be finally extinguished by the encroachments of Buonaparte, Mr. Planta was induced, by a laudable feeling for his native country, to draw up a complete ‘History of the Helvetic Confederacy,' from its origin, which was published in 1800, in two volumes 4to: it was compiled from the best authorities, but principally, as the preface avows, from the masterly work of Müller. Its accuracy and fidelity obtained for it a respectable share of public approbation, and it was reprinted in a second' edition, in 1807, in three volumes 8vo. After the happy restoration of liberty to that country, in 1815, Mr. Planta resumed his inquiries; and, from the best recent documents, drew up a short supplemental history, entitled 'A View of the Restoration of the Helvetic Confederacy, &c.' This was separately published in 8vo, in 1821. Mr. Planta left no surviving offspring, except his son; whose studies he had anxiously superintended, while he gave him every advantage of the best public education. Nor was it a small addition to his bappiness, that he lived to see this son -advanced, by fair and honourable exertions, to the most distinguished offices under the Government. We may say, in short, that few men have ever been more fortunate either in their marriage, or its consequences.
In the appointment of Mr. Planta's successor (HENRY ELLIS, Esq.) his present Majesty has displayed that tact and discrimination for which he is so justly distinguished in matters of taste and literature; - for whom could he have selected so well qualified to fill the important and highly responsible office of Principal Librarian to the British Museum, as the learned Editor of the valuable Series of Letters Illustrative of English History, who had devoted five and twenty years of his life to the service of that establishment of which he is now, by his Majesty's favour, the able and efficient president?—Long may he continue to fill this honourable post, and to delight and instruct the world with fresh excerpts from the 20,000 volumes of those valuable manuscripts of which he was, for so many years, the guardian-an office (it is well known to every literate) he discharged with credit to himself, and with the greatest advantage to those who had occasion to consult these re