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the body of every individual alike; quence, possess still the power to and after the dissolution of the body, charm and influence M. Flourens. after its destruction, even its reduction “I reject," he says, "the organic to ashes, these organic molecules, molecules of Buffon, as I do the upon which death has no power, still monads of Leibnitz. They are only survive, pass into other beings, and philosophic expedients for removing bring to them nourishment and life. difficulties which they do not remove. Every production, every renewal, I study life in neither of these, but every increase by generation, by pu: in living beings themselves; and trition, by development, supposes then from this study I learn two things a preceding destruction, a conversion first, that the number of species has of substance, a transport of these been continually diminishing ever organic molecules which never mul- since animals have existed upon the tiply, but which, always existing in globe ; and, second, that the number equal number, keep nature always of individuals in certain species has equally alive, the earth eqnally peo- been, on the contrary, continually inpled, and always equally resplendent creasing. The result of these conwith the first glory of Him who trary actions is, that, taking everycreated it."
thing into account, the total quantity Who, after reading this passage, of life-by which I understand the will deny to Buffon the praise both total number of living beings-reof genius and eloquence? No wonder mains in effect, as Buffon has said, he has charmed and captivated so very nearly the same." many generations of admiring readers, Tamed down into plain Englisli, the and persuaded them to receive his eloquentimaginings of Buffon, as interpoetical imaginings as the dogmas of preted and understood by M. Flourens, trtie science.
amount simply to this, that the numThe entire doctrine of Buffon, that ber of individual living beings existing the quantity of life on the globe is at one time on the face of the earth has fixed, is a pure speculation. His always been very nearly the same. organic molecules are a second still Out of a purely speculative assertion more ethereal imagination, devised to like this what good can be extracted? explain the possibility of the first. Does it really throw any light upon Except as a curious hypothetical palæontological history, or derive any notion, wherewithal to while away an confirmation from such chapters of this idle hour, we would dismiss the first history as have yet been written? not only from our books, but from our Does it enable us, in any degree, to thoughts. It can scarcely in any understand better the Divine plan way be connected with the positive and procedure in the past, as it is knowledge of our time. The second recorded in the rocky strata-or in the speculation is only to be numbered present, as seen in the supposed prowith the vain fancies, antiquated gressive increase of the human race? though fine, which abound so much Nevertheless M. Flourens, in the in the purely poetical physical philo- book before us, sets formally to work sophy of past centuries.
to prove his two propositions. And yet there is a charm in this “That species are always lessening poetical philosophy which makes us in number," he says, “ is evident from regret while we dismiss it. We can the fact that several species are known not help admiring the speculators of to have become extinct in comparathe olden tiine, as men of finely-gift- tively recent times. The dodo has ed minds. And we envy them those become extinct since the Portuguese happy hours of creative inspiration, first visited the Isle of France in when, by their midnight lamps, or 1545. The primitive types of nearly beneath the shade of academic groves, all our domestic animals-the ox, the they built up poetical worlds, and horse, the camel, the dog-are all by imaginative methods constructed extinct. Immediately before the hisand regulated all their wheels.
toric period the mammoth and the It is no doubt owing to feelings of mastodon disappeared, leaving the this kind that the great views of elephant as the sole existing gigantic Buffon, the substance of his elo. quadruped. Before these, again, the
megatherium, the dinotherium, and But in this latter increase is there how many others!
anything more than an imaginary “To take a special example. Not compensation for the other forms of life less than forty species of pachyderms that are lessened or extirpated? Is are known to have lived on the soil there in it any evidence of a system of of France, and of these the only one compensation having been in existthat now remains is the wild boar; ence in more ancient geological epochs? and of nearly a hundred species of There is nothing of the sort. The ruminating animals, only the ox, the imaginary law of Buffon is rendered stag, and the roebuck. Finally, M. in no degree more probable by Agassiz reckons not less than twenty- the conjectural modifications of M. five thousand species of fossil fishes Flourens. All we can admit at preall lost, while we know only five or sent is, that the quantity of life upon six thousand living fishes - and of the globe at any one time, and the extinct shells forty thousand are reck- forms in which this life manifests oned in a fossil state."
itself, are dependent upon the will of These facts are admitted, but the the Deity. To what general laws He conclusion which M. Flourens hastily has subjected this total quantity and draws from them is not admissible. these forms, we cannot even guess.
Since life first appeared upon the earth, he says, species have always gone on diminishing. But of this assertion the facts he baz advanced Do these speculations as to the are no proof whatever. It is an un- quantity of life upon the globe interdisputed fact in palæontology, that fere in any way with our reasonings species, and even genera, have from and conclusions as to the natural and time to time disappeared from the possible length of human life ? Not in surface of the globe. But it is equally the least. As an abstract result of undisputed that new species and physiological inquiry, it has been rengenera have from time to time made dered probable that from ninety to a their appearance --- man himself, so hundred years is the natural length of far as we know, being among the last. an ordinary human life. As a special New forms constantly succeeded the and individual positive result, affectold. And who shall say that at anying each of us to whom this informaone of those epochs in which life tion is given, it has been rendered most abounded, the number of species further probable that, by leading a or genera was really less than in an- moderate and sober life, any of us may other? Who can even, with a show attain this length of life in comparative of reason, say-taking all species of health and comfort. As to wbat living things together-that there are would happen on the face of the fewer genera or species on the earth globe, were all men so to live that at this moment-in air, land, and none should fail to reach this great water-than at any former geologic age — as to how the people would era he could name? All that can be multiply, and what would become of safely said is, that man, as the domi- them, these are questions which do nant species, is gradually subduing not concern us as individuals anxious and extirpating some hundreds of to live long-—which, were we all to other species in the present era, and begin incontinently so to live, could that the individuals of his own species, scarcely cause anxiety for generations and of a few useful domestic animals, to come, and which we may confiare at the same time increasing some dently leave to be answered by the wbat in number.
ZAIDEE: A ROMANCE.
PART VI.-BOOK II.
It is a day of great exhaustion and to no particular refinement of tenderlanguor in Bedford Place. Every one ness. Notwithstanding, this first mornwho comes up-stairs, comes with drag- ing, everybody perceived the first ging footsteps, slow and toilsome; break in the family ; everybody was a every one who enters the drawing- little uncomfortable, and felt å want room sinks despondingly on sofa or and vacancy. She was their Charlotte, easy-chair, and exclaims of being so this careless young lady, and they tired!” The flatness of excitement missed her when she was gone. overpast is upon the whole house. So mamma, for all her activity, will The maids yawn at their work, and rather waste this morning, sitting on Buttons himself looks half asleep. a sofa musing, living yesterday over The drawing-room is carelessly arrang- again, and taking little note of to-day. ed, the little parlour in a litter, and Minnie, unreproved for once, will sit Mrs Disbrowe's own apartment strew. at the window with a novel in her lap. ed with ends of ribbon and scraps of There will be so much to talk about thread; but Mrs Disbrowe, too tired down stairs, that the household work to find fault, passes over these short. will fare badly, and Mrs Disbrowe's comings with unwonted forbearance. dinner turn out much less perfect than Breakfast is late, and there is no fresh- usual. In such a well-governed house, ness in the morning; but every one is this momentary lull does no harm. submissive, and bears with charred One day to the memory of Miss Chartoast and cold tea with a singular lotte Disbrowe is an abundant sacrimagnanimity. Even mamma has fice. Mamma will talk of her daughter, forgotten her pink ribbons this morn- Mrs Lancaster, and be herself after ing, and Minnie is not sent off in dis- to-morrow. grace for her ravelled locks and But the languor of the rest of the broken-down slippers. It is the first house has not reached to the nursery. day after the marriage day; the first Everything is elaborately correct and morning on which the family have proper to-day in this high-seated doawoke to find Charlotte gone.
main. If Nurse longs in the depths Papa, who does not say anything, of her heart to share the gossip in the instinctively feels the air chilly this kitchen, Nurse is prudent, and keeps morning, and lounges over the fire in her desire under cover. Rosie and his dressing-gown when he should Lettie, seated together as usual, are have been at his office. Leo is pale, unfolding their work at a window. and somehow reminds one strongly of Jack, in profound contemplation, those baskets of empty wine-bottles studies the basin of pure water in which stand below in the hall. Mrs which he has launched his boat. Disbrowe, presiding at the table, for- Harry is busily occupied making a gets who takes tea and who coffee, paper boat, to rival that famous proand, with a motherly sigh, misses duction of wood. Sissy and Tommy Charlotte, who was her deputy here. play at cat's cradle. They are all purIt was a very merry wedding, marked suing their amusements elaborately, by few sentimentalities; and father and and not with the freedom of common mother are glad to have their child soase. Some hidden movement of rewell married, and proud of the display bellion is in the nursery to-day. of friends, the sparkling table, and For upon the table are a number of the gay procession. There was no- books well thumbed, and worn with thing to lament about in the whole use-primers, spelling-books, readingbusiness; and Mrs Disbrowepretended books, little grammars and geographies, and well-inked copy - lines. to do for mamma," said Rosie, whose There also lies a light cane, once a heart smote her a little, as she looked potent sceptre in the firm hand of up at Zaidee's face. “Mamma never Charlotte; and beside this table, pale, said we were to get our lessons to you. and somewhat agitated, Miss Francis I am sure you cannot teach us," said sits restlessly, trembling with uncer the less amiable Lettie. From this tainty and confusion, looking upon all unpromising commencement Zaidee these childish faces, which are full of shrank, making no answer. Her resistance, wondering to see how un. natural candour was almost too much lovely they are; nervous and afraid of for her at this conjuncture. It was speaking to them, ready to cry with quite possible, after all, that this sovexation, with wistful eagerness and lemn us, tbe twins of Bedford Place, shame. Yes, it is very true. The were already too learned to be in. poor young girlish governess is not structed by her. only afraid of Minnie, but of the very “Wby, then, and the young lady youngest and smallest of Minnie's has nothing to do but ask your mambrothers and sisters, and has not the ma?" cried Nurse, the sole support of faintest idea how she must begin with the stranger. “Oh, children, is that them, nor plan for managing the small all the memory you have for what I upruly population given to her care. told you?”
And Nurse, coming and going But even with Nurse's support silently, shakes her head, and makes Zaidee did not venture to return to signs to Zaidee, warning her to begin; the charge. She was no match for then, sitting down close by her, touches these precocious little women. The her now and then with her elbow. little boys might possibly be more Finding all this insufficient, Nurse at propitious. This trembling represenlast opens her lips and whispers, tative of instruction turned to them. " Miss ! sure you'll never get the “Will you come, then?" said Zaidee, better of them, if you never try. Why who had not courage to call Jack and can't you begin, honey? They're Harry by their names ; " you have waiting, every soul of them : say only to read and say your lessons, and they're to come and get their lessons. I am sure it does not matter who Sure I'd try."
hears you." Thus admonished, Zaidee, turning “Doesn't it, though ?" cried Harry very white and very red, gathers up -phlegmatic Jack meanwhile sucking her courage. It is strange how un- his finger, and saying nothing, as he sympathetic, how full of hard and piti- stands apart in the invincible might of less opposition, these little faces are, passive resistance; "it matters to as the distressed girl looks round upon me! I won't say my lessons to a them. They have no compassion for woman; not if you were twice as big, her utter solitude, her terror of them and twice as old. I won't have a girl selves. These children are all set ordering me, now Charlotte's maragainst her, each after its own fashion; ried. I'll go to school. I won't say the instincts of the childish heart are my lessons to you !" not touched in gentleness for her. Then she turned round very swiftly She is only their natural enemy, the and suddenly, and stooped to the new governess, and these little tyrants younger members of the family, who would crush her if they could.
sat on the floor behind. “Little chil“Will you come and read ? Mrs dren, will you let me teach you?" said Disbrowe said you should," said Zaidee; "you should be good, you Zaidee, addressing Rosie and Lettie. are such little ones. Will you come Neither Rosie nor Lettie were discom- to me?" posed; but the breath of the ques. Sissy Disbrowe tossed her small tioner came quick, and her voice was head with infantine disdain. “Miss timid and hurried. Poor Zaidee, at Francis means Tommy; it is not me," fourteen, in the fright and novelty said Sissy ; while Tommy roared and desolateness of her new position, manfully, “I won't say any lessons to could by no means look authoritative anybody; no! no! no!" or dignified.
The poor little governess stood “Oh, please, we have some work alone, facing this amiable family,
every member of wbich, stimulated Poor ignorant child! she was beand encouraged by the example of wildered and stunned to the heart. the others, faced her with the triumph She could not do anything ; not an of successful sedition. Zaidee ceased idea came to Zaidee of how she could trembling, after a moment, and became reduce into subordination this little very upright and very pale.
contumacious company. Her words "This is what-Mrs Disbrowe keeps came back to her with a dreary echome for," said Zaidee; "she does not she must do it; but the children were want me for anything else; I have no all quite fearless and indifferent to her, right to stay with her. I am here only while she trembled before them. She because I am to teach you. I know would not shed tears in their sight; very little-it is all quite true ; but I but the tears, notwithstanding, blinded am to hear you your lessons. That is her eyes. She stood in the centre of wbat I am here for; and I am obliged the room, sick at heart. What should to do it, or I must go away. I have she do ? no friends. I cannot go away unless But the door opened at the moMrs Disbrowe sends me. It is not ment, and with a sudden start the that I love to teach, or that I am very countenances changed before her. good for it; but I must-do you hear Mamma had come herself to superinme?-I must ; because I am here for tend the first day's teaching. How it no other thing."
was, Zaidee could not tell; but before When Zaidee had said her speech, half an hour was over, two gentle she remained still looking round upon little pupils, being no other than Rosie them all, her dark face lighted up with and Lettie, whilom leaders of the inresolve and decision. The children surrection, stood before her, meekly still confronted her, all of them rebel- reading their lessons. To defy the lious and unmoved. What was she to governess was easy enough, but it do, to express in purpose what she was quite a different matter to defy had said in words?
" A little pack of plagues—no bet. be one thing or another, and not let ter. Miss, darlin', do you hear me? nobody take the advantage of me. Sure it's you will have your hands The lady is none so great a friend to full of them.”
you." “Did you speak to me, Nurse ? ". The girl looked up once more with asked Zaidee.
her half-awakened eyes, but Zaidee "Was it speak to you? I was could not be persuaded to pity herself mourning for you, poor soul, and you on this score. From a long, long disso young," said Nurse, compassion- tance off the summit and elevation of ately; " it isn't the like of this you've her own thougbts, she looked upon been used with, I can see, for all so Nurse, who pitied the poor young little as you say."
governess. All the while Mrs DisBut Zaidee was unresponsive, and browe's plain-sewing went on uncondid not understand the pity bestowed sciously, and on the table between upon her. She looked up for an in the windows you could see the schoolstant with one of her wistful looks, books and copy-books gathered in a half vacant, half inquiring, and then little heap. Zaidee was wearied with returned silently to her work, which a real day's work, but the sensation was “ plain-sewing”-sewing of the was pleasant to her. True, she had very plainest, such as there was con- been blinded with tears of vexation siderable need for in Mrs Disbrowe's and embarrassment more than once well-populated house.
to-day; but her thougbts were so very “I wouldn't lay myself out for far removed from making a grievance more trades nor one, I wouldn't," of this, or of anything else in the lot continued Nurse. “I'd not be slav. she had chosen, that the simpleing all the night if I had to fight with hearted child did not even apprehend them little bothers all the day. I'd the idea when it was presented to