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قراءة كتاب The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction Volume 10, No. 281, November 3, 1827

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‏اللغة: English
The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction
Volume 10, No. 281, November 3, 1827

The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction Volume 10, No. 281, November 3, 1827

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دار النشر: Project Gutenberg
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the foreign prince, evinced such marks of tenderness, that Hamlet could not but perceive the depth of his conquest. He was not insensible to her attractions; and receiving the king's assent, in the course of a few days led her to the nuptial altar. Amidst all joys, he was, however, like a perturbed ghost that could not rest; and before many suns had rose and set, he obtained a hard wrung leave from his bride, once more set sail, and appeared at Elsineur just in time to be a witness of the splendid rites which Fengo (supposing him now to be murdered) had prepared for his funeral. On the proclamation of his arrival, he was welcomed with enthusiasm by the people, whose idol he was, and who had been overwhelmed with grief when Fengo announced to them his sudden death in England. The king, inflamed with so ruinous a disappointment, and becoming doubly jealous of his growing popularity, now affected no conciliation, but openly manifested his hatred and hostility. Hamlet again had recourse to his pretended madness, and committed so many alarming acts, that Fengo, fearing their direction, ordered his sword to be locked in its scabbard, under a plea of guarding the lunatic from personal harm, After various adventures, at last the prince accomplished the death of his uncle's adherents, and vengeance on the fratricide himself, by setting fire to the palace during the debauch of a midnight banquet. Rushing amidst the flames, he kills Fengo with his own hand, reproaching him at the moment with his murder, adultery, and incest. Immediately on this act of retribution he was proclaimed lawful successor to the throne, and crowned with all due solemnity.

Thus far Shakspeare treads in the steps of the annalist; the only difference is in the fate of the hero; in the one he finds a kingdom, in the other a grave. Saxo Grammaticus carries the history further; and after the crowning of Hamlet as king, brings him again into Britain, where, in compliment to that land of beauty, he marries a second wife, the daughter of a Scottish king. Hamlet brought both his wives to Denmark, and prepared for a long life of prosperity and peace. But the sword hung over his head; war burst around him, and he fell in combat by the hand of Vigelotes, son of Ruric. Saxo Grammaticus sums up his character in a few words: "He was a wise prince and a great warrior. Like Achilles, he had the principal actions of his life wrought on his shield. The daughter of the king of Scotland casting her eye on it, loved him for the battles he had won, and became his bride."



(Concluded from page 295.)

The Vine.—The value and transcendant excellence of this foreign fruit is too well known to require any extended account in this paper; as a native of the southern verge of the northern temperate zone, it only requires its natural degree of heat to bring it to perfection. The growth is luxuriant, is fertile, easy of management, and as it requires support, obedient to the trainer's will. Many excellent varieties ate in our stoves and vineries; differing in hardness, size of bunches, and in colour and flavour of fruit. These, it is likely, have been gained from seeds; and as its cultivation has been primæval with the inhabitants of the earth, no wonder it received, for its unequalled utility, their chiefest care.

That the climate of this country has undergone a considerable change within the last hundred years, is allowed by all who have considered the subject; and nothing furnishes a more convincing proof of this, than the history of the vine. Previous to the reign of Henry VIII., every abbey and monastery had its vineyard. In the rent-rolls of church property in those days, and long afterwards, considerable quantities of grapes were paid as tithe; and the vestiges of some of those vineyards remain to this day. They were usually placed on the south side of a hill, in a light dry soil, having the surface covered with sand; the vines being trained near the ground. But with such inclement and changeable springs, and long protracted winters, as have been experienced of late, even such frost as is seen at this moment (24th of April,) vines as standards in the open air, would be destroyed; or, at least, no dependence could be placed upon them for a crop. But vineyards in the country could neither be so profitable, nor are they so necessary as they were in those days; international intercourse is now more open, and corporations, whether religious or civil, can be supplied with grapes in any shape, and their precious juice in any quantity, at a cheaper rate than either home-grown or home-made. In their cultivation in this country, practitioners are more liable to err in planting them in too rich, than in too poor a soil; the first adds too much to their natural luxuriance of growth, and always reduces the flavour of the fruit.

The Mulberry.—This fruit has not been subjected to the operations and attention of the improver so much, perhaps, as it deserves; true, it has been planted against walls, and as espaliers; and in both places has done well.

The Fig has been long in our gardens; a very ancient one is still alive in the garden of one of the colleges at Oxford. In its native country it produces two crops in the year, and this property makes its management rather difficult in a country where it can but with difficulty be made to produce one; and especially when trained in the common way to a wall, where the crop is often sacrificed to the useless symmetry of the tree. It is impatient of frost, and requires protection during winter; and is also impatient of the knife, and more, perhaps, than any other tree, is disposed to form its own natural head. When kept in a glass case, either planted in the ground or in pots, it well repays the trouble bestowed upon it.

The Quince.—This fruit remains very steadily in character to what it has always been known to be; the taste is too austere to be used alone from the tree; but with other fruits in pastry, or in the shape of preserves or marmalade, it is useful.

The Medley.—Two or three sorts of this tree are in cultivation: they are placed in the lowest grade of fruits; though, when they are perfectly mature, they are much relished by some palates. The azarola, service, and two or three others used in the south of Europe, are not worth notice here.

The Filbert.—The common wild hazle of our hedges has been improved, by chance or cultivation, into the several varieties of red and white filberts and cob-nuts. Working them upon the hazle, or upon themselves, is necessary; because, it not only makes them more fruitful, but also brings them sooner into bearing.

The Walnut.—This nuciferous tree has been cultivated in England more for the value of the timber than for its fruit. There are several varieties, differing chiefly in the size of the nut, from the diminutive ben-nut, to the large or double French sort. The only improvement which can be expected in this, is a hardier sort which would be less susceptible of damage from frost.

The Chestnut.—The description of the walnut may be applied to this, as they are natives of the same climate; and their flowers are alike impatient of frost. The fruit of this is, however, inferior to that of the walnut, and seldom arrives at the same degree of perfection. The tree grows to a great size, and is one of the most valuable of our forest trees. In "days of yore," it must have been much more plentiful in this country, or more plentifully imported, than it now is; as the principal timbers of abbeys, cathedrals, and other ancient buildings, are chiefly formed of it: being equally durable as the oak, which it so much resembles, that they can hardly be distinguished from each other, but by the test of the wet edge of a chissel being stained by the oak, and not at all by the chestnut.