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latitude. (I am considering the Amazon as trib-tropical sea is separated by a narrow strip of land utary to the Caribbean Sea, and will show it so from the Pacific Ocean, across which a good to be.) The back country which supports and thoroughfare is required, in order to place this supplies with the elements of commerce this sea cornucopia of the world practically and commerof ours, extends from 20° south to 50° north. cially where it is geographically, viz., midway The land within this region is fruitful beyond between Europe and Asia. measure; it includes all the producing latitudes From this proposed opening, the trade-winds on the face of God's footstool, and every variety of the Pacific blow from the eastward to the of production, except tea and a few spices, that westward, and extend entirely across that ocean. the three grand kingdoms of nature afford, is to They blow with wonderful regularity, steadiness, be found here in the greatest perfection, profusion, and constancy. In "running down the trades" and abundance. Coal measures without limit; the mariner enjoys the most beautiful navigation. mountains of iron; the best silver and the richest | Without care for his safety he sails before them copper mines, and all the materials of mineral day after day, for weeks together, never once wealth, abound in this region as they do nowhere else. Nor is the vegetable kingdom less prolific or beautiful. The finest of wheat, the best of fruits, corn without measure, hemp, cotton, rice, sugar, wine, oil, indigo, coffee, and India-rubber, tobacco and timber, dye-stuffs, and the finest of woods, are all to be found in this magnificent system of basins in vast quantities and in great beauty and perfection.
touching a brace or handling a sail. In them the sea is always smooth, the weather fine, and the climate delicious. Gales of wind are unknown, and life there becomes so delightful to the sailor, that, with nothing to do, he congratulates himself in mere wantonness with the remark that "it is well all parts of the sea had not been so, else his mother would have been a sailor."
The trade winds embrace a belt of ocean about Nor are the supplies from the animal kingdom fifty degrees of latitude in breadth, extending on a scale less grand. Everything that island or from twenty-five or thirty degrees north to twentymountain, sea-shore or inland basin, plains and five or thirty degrees south. An ordinary sailer, pampas, tierras templadas or tierras calientes, can in running them down, will average, day after produce, is brought down to enrich this great day, two hundred miles. She counts upon them cornucopia of commerce. It occupies a geograph- with as much certainty as the flatboat-man counts ical position that makes it the commercial centre upon the downward current of the Mississippi of the sea; and on account of this very position river. To the north of the equator they blow it possesses advantages which no other part of the from the north-east; to the south of it they wide ocean has ever enjoyed. It is between two blow from the south-east. From these winds hemispheres. It has a continent to the north and the Pacific takes its name. The "keels," a continent to the south. When it is seed time" broad horns," and rafts, which come down the ou one side of it, it is harvest time on the other; and there will be, when its back country is settled up, a perpetual delivery of crops in its markets.
With Europe to the east and Asia to the west, it is midway between the two parts of the Old World, and it stands on an eminence in navigation and commerce which places all parts of the earth at its feet, and from which it may be made to send its surplus produce down the currents of the ocean or before the winds of heaven, to the people of every city and clime who are to be found on the seashore.
OCEAN CURRENTS AND WINDS.
Mississippi, might navigate the trade wind region-opposite to the middle of which is the Caribbean Sea-with as much safety as they can descend the river. Open boats, yawls, have been known to sail thousands of miles before them across that ocean. So smooth and exempt from storms is it where these winds prevail, that much of the coasting trade of Peru is carried on by "catamarans," or " balsas." These "balsas" are nothing more than a few light logs tied together; in other words, they are a Mississippi raft, with a pole stuck down between two of the logs, to which a sail is tied. Piling their produce in sacks or bales on these logs, the Peruvians stand boldly out to sea, and perform sea voyages of considerable duration.
An ocean current sweeps past the mouth of the Amazon into the Caribbean Sea, and makes that river discharge there. This current runs thence through the Yucatan pass; rushes by the Balize, and, dashing along at the rate of four miles the hour, whirls through the Straits of Florida and enters the Atlantic Ocean in the shape of the benignant Gulf stream, which tempers with its warmth the climates of Europe, and bears along thence the surplus produce that is delivered to it from this magnificent system of American rivers and river basins. On the other side, this inter-cult and dangerous part of the voyage.
It is not overdrawing the picture to add, that, with a ship canal across the Isthmus, the raft which comes down the Mississippi river or the boat for navigating the Illinois canal might, on arriving at New Orleans, and not finding a market there, stick up a pole for a mast, and setting sail, go to the Sandwich Islands or Manilla, and perhaps to China. Getting through the gulf to the canal across the Isthmus would be the most diffi
From Chambers' Journal. sweeping, with arrow-like swiftness, before the
most furious gale; and the way in which it just THE ALBATROSS.
tops the raging billows, and sweeps between the Of all the interesting objects which present them- gulfy waves, has a hundred times called forth my selves to the eye of the voyager in the southern wonder and admiration. Although a vessel running hemisphere, the albatross is among the most note- before the wind frequently sails more than 200 worthy. Apart from its relieving the monotony of miles in the twenty-four hours, and that for days the watery expanse, this bird, by its extraordinary together, still the albatross has not the slightest characteristics, seldom fai of exciting a lively de- difficulty in keeping up with the ship, but also pergree of astonishment in the spectator-for what can forms circles of many miles in extent, returning be thought of a bird which apparently requires nei- again to hunt up the wake of the vessel for any ther rest nor sleep? It is perhaps owing to this substances thrown overboard. peculiarity that sailors and others have regarded “ Like the other species of the genus, it is nocihe albatross with mingled feelings of awe and won-turnal as well as diurnal, and no bird with which I der : its presence was an omen, but rather of good am acquainted takes so little repose. It appears to than evil. The weary crew of Bartholomew Diaz be perpetually on the wing, scanning the surface doubtless looked on the swift, air-cleaving creature of the ocean for molluscs and meduse, and the other as an appropriate scout from the Cape of Storms, marine animals that constitute its food. So frewhile Vasco de Gama may have hailed it as the quently does the boldness of this species cost it its herald of his hope and success. Coleridge has very life, that hundreds are annually killed, without, happily availed himself of these different aspects in however, its numbers being apparently in any dehis “ Ancient Mariner," where he makes the aged gree lessened. It readily seizes a hook baiied with seaman, with “ long gray beard and glittering eye,” fat of any kind; and if a boat be lowered, its attenrelate how, from out the dismal mists
tion is immediately attracted, and while flying
round, it is easily shot.” It is not surprising thai At length did cross an albatross,
a poetical imagination should have been excited by Through the fog it came ; As if it had been a Christian soul,
such a subject, and Coleridge is not the only bard We hailed it in God's name.
who has shaped it into verse. Another writesIt ate the food it ne'er had ate,
Now upon Australian seas,
Wasted by the tropic breeze,
Watch the wondrous albatross-
Circling round in orbits rast,
Pausing now above the mast,
Laving now his snowy breast
Where the billows sleeping rest.
Now he skims the surface o'er
Rising, falling evermore ;
Floating high on stillest wing,
Now he seems a guardian thing,
Now a messenger of wrath, Whatever delight might be experienced in contem
Cleaving swist his airy path ; plating the bird under the mysterious point of view
Bearing o'er the liquid plain suggested by the poet, would be rather heightened
Warning of the hurricane. than diminished by a knowledge of its real natural Mr. Gould's description of the Diomedea melanocharacter; and this we may obtain from that valu- phrys (black-eyet wed albatross) exhibits other able and highly meritorious work, “ The Birds of characteristics :-“Of all the species,” he observes, Australia,” by Mr. Gould. According to this en- “ with which I am acquainted, this is the most fearterprising naturalist
less of man, and it often approaches many yards ** The Diomedea exulans (wandering albatross) nearer the vessel than any other. I have even obis by far the largest and most powerful species of served it approach so near that the tips of its pinits tribe ; and, from its great strength and ferocious ions were not more than two arms' length from the disposition, is held in terror by every other bird taferel. It is very easily captured with a hook and with which it is surrounded. It is even said that line ; and as this operation gives not the least pain it will fearlessly attack and tear out the eyes of a to the bird, the point of the hook merely taking hold drowning man, a feat, from what I have observed in the horny and insensible tip of the bill, I freof it, I can readily imagine it would attempt. It quently amused myself in capturing it in this way, is most abundant between the 30th and 60th de- and after detaining it sufficiently long to afford me grees of south latitude, and appears to be equally an opportunity for investigating any particular point numerous in all parts of the ocean bounded by those respecting which I wished to satisty myself, setting degrees; and I feel assured that it is confined to no it at liberty again. I also caught numerous exainone part, but is constantly engaged in making a ples, marked, and gave them their liberty, in order circuit of the globe in that particular zone allotted to ascertain whether the individuals which were by nature for its habitation. The open sea is in Aying round the ship at nightfall were the same fact its natural home; and this it never leaves, ex- that were similarly engaged at daylight in the cept for the purpose of breeding, when it usually morning, after a night's run of 120 miles, and resorts to rocky islands the most difficult of access. which, in nearly every instance, proved to be the
“The powers of flight of the wandering albatross case.” are much greater than those of any other bird that Angling for albatrosses is no modern art, as aphas come under my observation. Although, during pears from the narrative of Sir Richard Hawkins' calm or moderate weather, it sometimes rests on voyage to the South Sea in 1593, in which it is the surface of the water, it is almost constantly on pretty certain that these birds are spoken of. “Cer the wing, and is equally at ease while passing over taine great fowles," says the narrator, “ as bigge the glassy surface during the stillest calm, or, as swannes, soared about us, and the winde calia
ing, setled themselves in the sea, and fed upon the the watch for the albatross quitting its nest, when sweepings of our ship; which I perceiving, and the rapacious pirate instantly pounces down and desirous to see of them, because they seemed farre devours the egg. So well is the poor bird aware greater than in truth they were, I caused a hooke of the propensity of its foe, that it snaps the mandiand line to be brought me, and with a piece of pil- bles of its beak violently together whenever it chard I bated the hooke, and a foot from it tied a observes the lestris flying overhead.” piece of corke, that it might not sinke deepe, and Mr. Earle, whose observations were made on the threw it into the sea, which, our ship driving with almost, inaccessible heights of Tristan d'Acunha, the sea, in a little time was a good space from us, remarks :-" The huge albatross here appeared to and one of the fowles beeing hungry, presently dread no interloper or enemy, for their young were seized upon it, and the hooke in his upper beake. on the ground completely uncovered, and the old It is like to a faulcon's bill, but that the point is ones were stalking around them. They lay but more crooked, in that manner, as by no meanes hee one egg, on the ground, where they make a kind could cleere himselfe, except that the line brake, or of nest by scraping the earth around it: the young the hooke righted : plucking him towards the ship, is entirely white, and covered with a woolly down with the waving of his wings he eased the weight of which is very beautiful. As we approached, they his body, and being brought to the sterne of our snapped their beaks with a very quick motion, makship, two of our company went downe by the ladder ing a great noise : this, and the throwing up of the of the poope, and seized on his neck and wings ; contents of the stomach, are the only means of but such were the blows he gave them with his offence and defence which they seem to possess." pinnions, as both left their hand-fast, beeing beaten It was at one time believed that the head of the blacke and blue; we cast a snare about his necke, female became of a scarlet color while she was sitand so triced him into the ship. By the same man- ting, and afterwards resumed its original hue. Be ner of fishing we caught so many of them, as re- this as it may, the male is very attentive to her freshed and recreated all my people for that day. during the time she keeps the nest, and is con
Their bodies were great, but of litile flesh and ten- stantly on the wing in search of food, which, as der; in taste answerable to the food whereon they before observed, consists of small marine animals, feed. They were of two colours—some white, mucilaginous zoophytes, and the spawn of fish. some gray; they had three joyntes in each wing; When opportunity offers, however, they attack and from the pointe of one wing to the pointe of more solid fare. Commander Rempthorne relates, the other, both stretched out, was above two fath- that while on a voyage in 1836, in search of the
lost crew of the “Charles Eaton," he fell in with Similar instances are recorded, though not in the half-putrid carcass of a whale, surrounded by language quaint and tedious as the above, in Cook's a host of fishes and birds, albatrosses among the Voyages. The great circumnavigator's crew were latter ; "and so occupied were they, that even the glad to regale themselves on albatross roast and approach of our boat did not disturb them, or put boiled, after having been many weeks at sea, and them to flight : many albatrosses allowed us to confined to salt food. Sir James Ross, too, after attack them with our oars and the boat-hooks, and stating that when off the Aguilhas bank, “ the gi- several were consequently knocked down and gantic albatross was seen in great numbers, and killed.” The egg of the albatross is about four many of them taken by means of a fishing-line," inches long, white, and spotted at the larger end ; remarks" These birds added a degree of cheer- although good to eat, the albumen or white does fulness to our solitary wanderings, which contrasted not solidify in the boiling. The penguin is said to strongly with the dreary and unvarying stillness take possession of the nests when vacated. The of the tropical region.”
albatross is a constant attendant on fishing parties, Most marvellous accounts have been given of the and if in a low condition from scarcity of food or spread of wing of the albatross, rivalling the won other causes, soon regains its flesh and fat, so voraderful roc of the “ Arabian Nights." Mr. Gould ciously does it devour. It is no uncommon occurtook pains to verify the facts. The largest speci- rence for one of these birds to take a fish of several men seen by him measured 10 feet 1 inch from tip pounds' weight into its mouth, and having swalto tip of the outspread wings, and weighed_17 lowed one extremity, to wait, like the boa-conpounds. But Dr. M'Cormick, surgeon of the “ Er- strictor, digesting and gulping until the whole is ebus, in the Antarctic exploring voyage met with consumed. Towards the end of June, in anticipaone weighing 20 pounds, and 12 feet stretch of tion of the fishing season, albatrosses arrive in wing. The Auckland Islands, about to become thousands on the coasts of Kamtschatka, and are the head-quarters of our southern whale-fishery, captured in great numbers, for food and other purare a much-frequented breeding-place for the birds ; poses, by the natives. With the hollow bones of the others as yet known to naturalists are the Camp- the wing they make pipe-stems, sheaths, needlebell Island-some lonely rocks off the southernmost cases, and combs, the latter being used in the prepextremity of Van Diemen's Land—and the islands aration of flax : they also make use of the inflated of Tristan d'Acunha. While at the Aucklands, intestines as floats for their nets. Dr. M'Cormick made himself acquainted with what Notwithstanding its large size, the albatross does may be called the bird's domestic habits :-" The not appear to be a quarrelsome bird ; and when albatross," he writes, “ during the period of incu- attacked by its enemy the skua gull, it endeavors bation, is frequently found asleep with its head to save itself by tlight. Captain Cook once saw a under its wings; its beautiful white head and neck contest between two of these gulls and an albatross; appearing above the grass, betray its situation at a the sole object of the latter appeared to be to defend considerable distance off. On the approach of an its breast and the softer portions of its body from intruder, it resolutely defends its egg, refusing to the fierce assaults of its antagonists : loss of liberty, quit the nest until forced off, when it slowly wad- however, is said to irritate the bird greatly. Its dles away in an awkward manner to a short dis- voice, according to Sourrini, resembles that of the tance, without attempting to take wing. Its great- pelican, with a cry approaching the bray of an ass. est enemy is a fierce species of Lestris, always on | This author further observes with regard to the
flight of the albatross :- The manner of these | passage, the author makes some further remarks as birds' flying is very astonishing; the beating of their wings is perceived only at the moment of taking wing, and often they make use at the same time of their feet, which, being webbed, enable them to rise by striking the water. This impulse once given, they have no longer need to beat their wings; they keep them widely extended, and seek their prey, balancing themselves alternately from right to left, skimming with rapid flight the surface of the sea. This balancing serves doubtless to accelerate their course, but it would seem scarcely sufficient to support them in the air. Perhaps an imperceptible fluttering of their feathers is the principal cause of this extraordinary movement. In this respect they would require to have muscles especially adapted, and for this reason I consider that the anatomy of these birds merits the greatest attention."
to this bird's powers of flight. "I remarked," he says, "that the albatross would lower himself even to the water's edge, and elevate himself again without any apparent impulse; nor could I observe any percussion of the wings when the flight was directed against the wind, but then, of course, its progress was tardy. Many, however, have differed with me in considering that the birds never fly' dead against the wind,' but in that manner which sailors term close to the wind,' and thus make progress, aided by, when seemingly flying against, the wind. This bird is evidently aided by its long wings, as well as tail, in directing its flight; it is never seen to soar to any great height, and is often observed to change its course, by turning the wings and body in a lateral direction, and oftentimes, when raising itself, to bend the last joint of the wings downwards."
Oh, thou wild and wondrous bird!
By the Germans the albatross is named "der From our extracts it is evident that for those who wandernde schiffsvogel" (the wandering ship-bird;) possess the "art of seeing," a voyage across the the Dutch term it "Jean de Jenten ;" English sail-wide ocean is not necessarily a scene of monotonous ors, looking to its bulky appearance, call it "the weariness: there is food for instruction and inspiraCape sheep ;" and with them also the sooty alba- tion everywhere; and here, with some further lines tross is "the Quaker-bird." There are seven spe- from the poem already quoted, we may appropricies particularized by naturalists: the technical de- ately bring our article to a close :scription, however, of the Diomedea exulans, given by Mr. Gould, will apply in general terms to the whole. "The wandering albatross," he observes, "varies much in color at different ages: very old birds are entirely white, with the exception of the pinions, which are black; and they are to be met with in every stage, from pure white, white freckled, and barred with dark-brown, to dark chocolate-brown approaching to black, the latter coloring being always accompanied by a white face, which in some specimens is washed with buff; beneath the true feathers they are abundantly supplied with a fine white down; the bill is delicate pinkywhite, inclining to yellow at the tip; irides very dark-brown; eyelash bare, fleshy, and of a palegreen; legs, feet and webs, pinky-white. The young are at first clothed in a pure white down, which gives place to the dark-brown coloring." The "cautious albatross," as its name indicates, is very shy, seldom approaches the land, and is not easily captured; the yellow-billed species, when in pursuit of its prey, will dive and swim for several yards under water.
Mr. Bennet, in his "Wanderings," has some interesting passages on the subject of the albatross. "It is pleasing," he writes, "to observe this superb bird sailing in the air in graceful and elegant movements, seemingly excited by some invisible power, for there is scarcely any movement of the wings seen after the first and frequent impulses are given, when the creature elevates itself in the air; rising and falling as if some concealed power guided its various motions, without any muscular exertion of its own, and then descending, sweeps the air close to the stern of the ship, with an independence of manner, as if it were monarch of all it surveyed.' It is from the very little muscular exertion used by these birds that they are capable of sustaining such long flights without repose. When seiz
ing on an object floating on the water, they gradually descend with expanded or upraised wings, or sometimes alight, and float like a duck on the water, while devouring their food; then they again soar in mid-air, and recommence their erratic flights. It is interesting to view them during boisterous weather, flying with, and even against the wind, seeming the gayest of the gay' in the midst of the howling and foaming waves. In another
Albatross, I envy thee
Oft thy soaring pinions free ;
Gladness as of endless springs
BY JOHN QUINCY ADAMS.
ALAS! how swift the moments fly!
See childhood, youth and manhood pass,
Time is the measure but of change;
No present hour is found;
Where sits, enthroned, I AM.
Then, pilgrim, let thy joys and tears
But henceforth all thy hopes and fears
With truth, with virtue live;
Griswold's Sacred Poets.
OR WHITE LEAD.
COMPLETE REVOLUTION IN THE ART OF blue, Violet and Indigo are mixtures of red and
blue, &c. &c. PAINTING.
The most important of the priinitive colors, that SUBSTITUTION OF THE WHITE OF ZINC FOR CERUSE which it is the most essential to render perfectly
innocuous and unchangeable, is White, which The Tribune translates the following interesting enters into the composition of nearly all paints. article from the French of Mr. F. Moignot:
The White exclusively employed now is the
white oxyd or carbonate of lead, of which that The new invention of which we have spoken, called the white of silver is only a more perfect considered in any point of view, either as regards variety. But the oxyd of lead is at once a violent the serious evils for which it offers a remedy, the poison and eminently subject to decomposition; it resources which it creates in the greatest and most becomes dirty and black, and is destroyed by precious of the arts—Painting ; the economies contact with sulphurous vapors, which are which it realizes, and the beauty which it procures, abundant in nature that it is impossible with every must excite universal interest in the highest degree. imaginable care to protect it from their corroding It is nothing less, in fact, than a complete revolution influence. in the process of painting in oil.
For the Yellow, we have the chromes and the If you open any of the reports of the Sanitary orpines, and also the ochres, which are durable but Council, presented every year to the Prefect of the deleterious : the chromes and the orpines are as Seine, you will always find an article entitled fugitive and dangerous as white lead. The orange Intoxication Saturnine, which will always tell you, mineral is equally homicidal. in the words of the report of 1841, with but trifling The Blues, composed of cobalt, &c., leave variations in the numbers, 302 sick, taken with the nothing to desire; they have all the durability and Saturnine Affection, (Painter's Colic,) viz., 237 innocuousness that are needed. workers in white lead; 43 house-painters, &c., &c., The Greens are either too dear for house-painting, have been admitted in the hospitals : 289 have like Veronese green, or worthless, like the green been cured, 12 are dead, one became insane, and of commerce, or deleterious to the system, or has been taken to the Asylum Bicetre, &c., &c. subject to rapid decomposition, like the green of
Now, then, let us repeat it again : In the nine- copper, verdigris, &c. teenth century, when science has made such great The Blacks, like the Blues, are perfect. progress, surmounted so many obstacles, overcome This brief enumeration shows us that the great 80 many difficulties, a product of almost primary and difficult problem presented, which Mr. Leclaire necessity, manufactured by a large number of sought to find a solution of, with so resolute a workmen, who are beset by a cruel infirmity, who purpose, may be summed up in the production of, are constantly decimated by death ; a product used First. A White, dazzling, unchangeable, inofby a multitude of artists, exposed daily to its dele- fensive, and endowed at the same time with all the terious influence; this product, we say, still held desirable properties of white lead. its place, always necessary, always sought after, Second. A Yellow, a substitute adapted to all casting a scornful defiance upon humanity leagued tints and shades, and without the objections in the together in vain against it!
yellows narned above. Mr. Leclaire, a well known house-painter, who Third. A Red, fixed and brilliant. was the first to introduce in his establishment that Fourth. A Green, intense, and exclusive of all excellent system of joint-stock association, of equi- preparations of copper and lead. table division of profits, and of mutual assistance, This is not all yet. The colors employed must which a happy emulation will realize everywhere, not, before all, compromise the health of the artists we trust at least, had yearly the misfortune of or workmen, while they produce perfectly the seeing many of his workmen affected with violent desired effect. As regards ihe tint, it must effectcolic, with paralysis, insanity, and even death ually resist the destructive influence of all the itself, or forced in the prime of life to give up their corroding substances naturally or accidentally comavocation, with the sad prospect of letting their bined with the atmosphere. An indispensable families sink into poverty and misery.
auxiliary was an oil that would dissolve readily and The deadly influences which every year prey dry in a short time. But the oil hitherto used, upon so many victims have only one and the same having these properties, contained a salt of lead, cause, viz., ihe use of colors in oil having lead for (litharge,) which was poisonous and changeable. their base; for these colors, and these oils, by their It was then necessary to discover a new drying, property of oxydation, are cruel homicides.
innocuous and unchangeable oil. The enemy, then, against which, first of all, it Here, then, was the problem to be resolved by was necessary to declare uncompromising war, Mr. Leclaire. He worked at it assiduously for over whom it was necessary to obtain a brilliant years, and finally obtained, by casy and certain victory, was Lead, which had become by an inex- ineans, and with great economy : orable necessity the main ingredient of all painting First. A pure and dazzling White-the oxyd in oil. After that came the tints obtained by a of zinc. combination of copper, also easily oxydized, and Sccond. A gold, lemon and straw Yellow-a consequently greatly deleterious.
preparation of the oxyd of zinc. As we desire always, in all of our articles, to Third. An excellent Red, having for its base enable our readers to acquire the greatest amount sulphate of antimony. of clear and practical knowledge possible, we shall Fourth. A number of fine Greens, resulting here enter into some details upon this subject. from the oxyd of zinc and the sulphate of cobalt.
The fundamental colors in painting, those by Fifth. A perfect drying oil, which is obtained means of which all tints possible are obtained, are by boiling 100 pounds of linseed oil with five White, Black, Yellow, Red, and Blue, and for pounds of peroxyd of manganese. greater facility Green is added ; Gray is a mixture For several years Mr. Leclaire has made excluof black and white, Green a mixture of yellow and / sive and successful use of his various discoveries in