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the green

those which expand the bosom in surveying the kind provisions of Nature, and in pursuing in thought the bounties of Providence, through all

the classes of his visible government; such pleasures as presented themselves to the mind of our great poet, when he wrote that feeling eulogy. on rural gratifications,

Sweet is the breath of morn, her rising sweet,

With charm of earliest birds, &c. The first of this month is a day which I love to honour in my parish by some little celebration; and

before

my

house is usually on this occasion the scene of much genuine mirth and seasonable jollity. It is on this day that all the young women of the parish seize, with earnestness, the opportunity of testifying their gratitude to my mother, for her bounties through the year, by building up for her a little bower, which they decorate with garlands, and what devices they are capable of inventing.

Last Tuesday they were bent upon doing her particular honour; for which purpose, the way from our garden-door to the arbour was covered with a carpeting of cowslips, enclosed with chains of flowers; and two young girls came to my door early in the morning, each with a honeycomb in her hand, and begged to be permitted to carry the great chair in triumph to the temple which they had consecrated to my mother. This I saw done amidst a chorus of voices, in which as enviable an eulogy was uttered, as that which attended Camillus to the Capitol. I own, this testimony of simple regard made me glow with a conscious pleasure ; and I felt something like the pride of blood, at seeing this good old remain of the Olive-Branch family raised to the highest honour of which I had any conception. She smiled too, herself, with more than her usual complacency, when, after the rustic dance round the May-pole was completed, every couple snatched a wreath from it, and, carrying it between them in the form of a festoon to her little sanctuary, threw it down at her feet.

To this ceremony another succeeded, that was not less agreeable to the feelings of the good old lady. It has always been, on this occasion, her custom to give a crown-piece to every poor family of merit in the neighbourhood; while every girl that has gained the praise of diligence and good manners, is sure to be rewarded with a new milk-pail, and a straw hat with cherry-coloured ribands. The great chair, which is the hot-bed of all my visions, is raised to greater importance in my eyes, since the honours it has lately received; and I am in hopes that its journey to the bower will be the occasion of its carrying me in my future dreams to the sylvan haunts of Faunus and the Dryads, or to the amber streams and amaranthine meadows of Elysian scenery.

The morning after this little anniversary, I took a walk to the bower, before breakfast ; and casting my eyes on the ground, I saw a piece of paper in the form of a note, which I had too much curiosity not to take up immediately ; and was glad when breakfast was announced, that I might have the satisfaction of reading its contents to the old lady, It was directed to the Rev. Simon Olive-Branch : and upon opening it, I could not help thinking that the hand-writing looked very like Miranda's; a suspicion which was not a little confirmed by the whimsicalness of the conception, and the goodness

of the design.

“ The Petition of a very innocent, useful, and

much abused person, to that grave Reformer, the Rev. Simon Olive-Branch,

“ Humbly showeth,

That your petitioner has most seriously to complain of divers abuses and outrages, which he humbly conceives it is within your province to chastise. He will begin, however, with stating his claims and pretensions, and then proceed to enumerate the instances in which his merits are despised, and his rights trampled under foot.

“ That your petitioner is the healthiest, foridest, and comeliest of twelve brothers; and is the father of thirty children; all of whom have been well brought up, and preserve their posts, and execute their functions with unfailing order and punctuality.

“Your petitioner's exemplary mildness of temper should give him a peculiar claim to the attention of one of the Olive-Branch family, as sympathy of character generally begets mutual kindness. He can plead, besides, that he has known your whole race these many centuries; and can carry his personal recollection back to anecdotes and facts concerning them, much beyond the compass of your mother's records, ancient as they are. He nursed your great-grandfather on his lap, when he was yet unable to walk; and gave

before he could lisp out tobacco-stopper. He has the honour of informing you, that he brought into the world a great-grandson of Shem, who was the son of Noah, &c.: that this great-grandson of Shem åttached a considerable number of followers to himself, by reason of his pacific qualities, and settled on the borders

him a nosegay,

of the Euphrates, where, it is said, he planted the first Olive; for that which the dove brought to the ark was only a branch of the wild species. His youngest son was named n'-72 or Olive-Branch; and with him the race of Olive-Branches properly began. That your petitioner has ever looked with great affection on this.goodly race, and has always received particular honours at their hands. That he humbly hopes, therefore, that the last of this ancient family will not refuse to listen to his requisitions, which are founded on such just pretensions.

“ That he has also great merits to plead, independent of his connections with the house of OliveBranch. That he is the only even-tempered character out of twelve brothers, the rest being all either too warm and passionate, or too cold and severe; and the one, especially, who was born just before him, is so fretful and fickle, that there is no knowing what to do with him, not to mention that he has a malignant pleasure in making fools of his majesty's subjects. That, besides the negative merit of preserving his temper in the midst of such examples, he and his thirty sons are employed in the active office of dressing out our general mother the Earth, and promoting her fruitfulness and abundance.

“ That your petitioner is not only prodigal of his benefits and kindnesses to man, but may claim, in a very high degree, the merit of impartiality in the distribution of them, holding all ranks in the same estimation, and oftentimes drying up the tears of the wretched, and creating a sunshine in luis thoughts. That his thirty sons too, who join him in this humble petition, are always occupied, whenever their turn comes round, in spreading joy, and love and beauty, and abundance, over the face of the earth. Ever sludious of the honour of their family, they are tainted

VOL. XXXV.

with no mean jealousy of each other's abilities; and one brother is continually improving upon the work of the other. It is also an extraordinary peculiarity belonging to them, that they are mature in proportion to their youth; and the youngest of them all is the ripest and forwardest. Sometimes, when your petitioner has finished his own task, he observes one of them flying over the commons and wastes, to hang every furze-bush he can meet, with golden baskets. Others are seen successively employed in clustering the lilac, perfuming the violet, forging the yellow chain of the liburnum, hooding the sweetpea, and variegating the daisy. Another will employ himself in sweeping the train of his green gar. ment over the meads and lawns, and leave impressed upon their surface a glossy verdure. This undertakes, as his charge, the painting of the almond blossom; while his next brother is occupied as musician to the grove, and teaches to the lark its matins, and its vespers to the nightingale.

“ Your petitioner trusts he need not enlarge upon his merits with the love-sick part of mankind: the influence of his family in propitiating the fair objects of their vows, and in lending an irresistible persuasion to their addresses, is so evident as to challenge even human ingratitude to deny it.

“Your petitioner has now only to state the topics of his complaint, which he will do as briefly as possible, not caring to expatiate upon matters so clear and striking.

“ 1st. The greatest part of those who used to do him honour at their rural seats, are now so disrespectful as to remain in town during his anniversary.

2d. That he is even unable to enforce the attendance, of the country folks, who are so brutal

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