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instinct enables it to discover springs which to us are unknown.
The bee is particularly delighted in roaming from flower to flower; and if it does not insert its whole body into each, it at least introduces its proboscis into the chalices. It enriches itself from every flower, and the attentive eye of the observer, who watches its motions, perceives the growth of the pellets of pollen, or farina, with which it furnishes the cavities of its hinder legs. But the eye cannot perceive any alteration in the flowers; they have not lost any thing of their beauty, nor of their colours, nor of their faculty of fructification; on the contrary, it is by the bee that the pollen of the male flower is conveyed to the female, as in cucumbers, melons, currants, gooseberries, &c.
During the summer, to whatever quarter the bee directs its flight, it is certain of a greater or less harvest of those substances which are proper for its habitation and support. With these substances imbibed into the stomach, or fixed to its thighs, back, or wings, it continues its flight in search of more food; and such is its indefatigability and ardour, that it prolongs its flight until its load be perfectly complete,
with which it returns to the hive.
Immediately on its arrival, it hastens to a cell, and evacuates from its stomach the substance which is converted into honey, or it is assisted by the other bees in discharging from its thighs the load of farina which it has collected in its journey. It is no sooner unburthened of its treasure, than it prepares for a fresh flight, cleans its wings, refreshes its antennæ, and in an instant darts from the hive to the fields of its harvest.
The bees live in a state of society; the individuals of a hive are perfectly known to each other, and they never admit a stranger into their community, excepting accidentally at swarming time, when circumstances can so combine, that several swarms may
unite, and form a social brotherhood. Every society is a monarchy governed by a queen, subordinate to whom are several hundred drones, and a multitude of labourers, according to the size of the colony'.
The queen insect is renowned for her splendour and beauty; her influence extends far and near among the little busy industrious tribes, who are patterns of neatness and activity.
But mark, of regal port and awful mien,
When twice ten suns, with all resplendent ray,
DR. EVANS'S BEES, a Poem.
In the latter end of March, chickens run about; a brimstone-coloured butterfly (papilio rhamni) appears; sea-kale begins to sprout; black beetles Ay
See Mr. Huish's entertaining and instructive Treatise on Bees, p. 11-13.
Child of the sun! pursue thy rapturous flight,
about in the evening; and bats issue from their places of concealment. Roach and dace float near the surface of the water, and sport about in pursuit of insects. Daffodils are in flower; peas appear above ground, and the male blossoms of the yew-tree expand and discharge their farina. Sparrows are busily employed in forming their nests. Young lambs are yeaned this month.
In this month the farmer dresses and rolls his meadows; spreads ant-hills; plants quicksets, osiers, &c.; sows flax seed, artificial grasses, beans and peas, broom and whin seeds, and grass seeds among wheat. About the 23d, he ploughs for and sows oats, and hemp, and flax. A dry season is very important to the farmer, that he may get the seed early into the ground.
In our last year's Diary for March, we gave the Rev. R. Polwhele's pleasing Poetical Calendar of Nature for that month, adapted to the SW. districts of England; we shall conclude the present with a beautiful Elegy on the Approach of Spring,' by John Scott, of Amwell.
Stern Winter hence with all his train removes,
And cheerful skies and limpid streams are seen;
O Fancy, paint not coming days too fair!
There shall thy wings, rich as an evening sky,
Rain-pouring clouds have darkened all the air,
I shun the scenes where maddening passion raves,
O'er prostrate Virtue in pursuit of gold.
The grassy lane, the wood-surrounded field,
The rude stone fence with fragrant wall-flowers gay, The clay-built cot, to me more pleasure yield
Than all the pomp imperial domes display:
And yet ev'n here, amid these secret shades,
These simple scenes of unreproved delight, Affliction's iron hand my breast invades,
And Death's dread dart is ever in my sight.
While genial suns to genial showers succeed,
(The air all mildness, and the earth all bloom); While herds and flocks range sportive o'er the mead, Crop the sweet herb, and snuff the rich perfume;
O why alone to hapless man denied
To taste the bliss inferior beings boast? O why this fate, that fear and pain divide
His few short hours on earth's delightful coast?
Ah cease-no more of Providence complain !
'Tis sense of guilt that wakes the mind to woe, Gives force to fear, adds energy to pain,
And palls each joy by Heaven indulged below:
Why else the smiling infant-train so blessed,
And dear-bought knowledge ends the peace within?
As to the bleating tenants of the field,
As to the sportive warblers on the trees, To them their joys sincere the seasons yield,
And all their days and all their prospects please.
Such mine, when first, from London's crowded streets, Roved my young steps to Surry's wood-crowned hills, O'er new blown meads, that breathed a thousand sweets,
By shady coverts and by crystal rills.
O happy hours, beyond recovery fled!
Is there no Power this darkness to remove?
Where fear and pain and death shall be no more?
Yes, those there are who know a Saviour's love
These, grateful, share the gifts of Nature's hand;
And in the varied scenes that round them shine (Minute and beautiful, or rude and grand),
Admire th' amazing workmanship divine.
Blows not a floweret in th' enamelled vale,
Shines not a pebble where the rivulet strays,
But claims their wonder and excites their praise.
From them ev'n vernal Nature looks more gay,
To them more sweet the sweetest breath of Morn.
They feel the bliss that Hope and Faith supply;
They pass serene th' appointed hours that bring
APRIL is derived from Aprilis, of aperio, I open; because the earth, in this month, begins to open her bosom for the production of vegetables. The Saxons called this month oster-monat, from the goddess Goster, or because the winds were found to blow generally from the east in this month.