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the quality of the ore, that in the neighbourhood where it is dug, neither cat, dog, nor fowl can be kept. Silver is mostly found mixed with it; but often in such small proportions, as not to repay the expense of separating it.
CECILIA. Is the black-lead of which pencils are made, composed of that metal?
MRS. HARCOURT. That substance, for it is not a metal, is found in England, particularly in Cumberland. For the purpose of making it into pencils, it is sawed into slips, and fitted into a groove of some soft wood, like cedar, and another slip of wood is then glued over it. I cannot dismiss our subject without remarking the abundance and variety of materials which nature offers to her children, as objects for the exercise of their understandings and industry. The globe is covered with vegetation; the ocean abounds with treasure; animals of every order fill the air and inhabit the earth; whilst its bowels conceal the riches of the mine: but, to the uncivilized savage, the principal part of these gifts is useless. The exertion of the intellectual faculties, ap
plication, ingenuity, and the multiplied wants of refined society, are requisite to apply them to beneficial purposes. The gradations of being, from a polype to a man, are nuThe distinctions between a savage and a philosopher are likewise great, though individuals of the same species. The advantage we enjoy of being born in a state of civilization, enables us to aspire to a degree of improvement characteristic of the latter. Do not let us be deprived of this superiority, by sloth and inattention; but, by a daily exertion of the talents bestowed upon us, let each of us endeavour to acquire useful knowledge, which is at once the ornament and companion of virtue.
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