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the soul? Can we not plunge deeper in the abyss of wisdom so as to discover who enkindled the mysterious light of life, and for what purpose it must burn ? For its light is ever soaring heavenward, and as a roseate finger pointing to some origin above the stars ; and even when the course of life is well nigh run, and the flame is fluctuating in its last farewell, even then, methinks it tells us, though in the silent eloquence of death, that Deity is its parentage, and its birthplace heaven. And so it is with the leaf : in the very moment of its fall it bids the soul rise heavenward, for every tongue that once twittered on the now-leafless bough can even yet speak and direct us to the tree of life that blows for ever in a brighter clime.

But nature can teach us the lesson of our being. The tempest howls with redoubled fury, and the relentless showers lash recklessly the lonely tree; its branches swing beneath the heavy deluge, and the winds howling strip it of its once-verdant vesture. But the sky clears again, and the sun peeps out with a brightened smile; the forest monarch has not ceased to weep, and every bough still groans beneath the laceration of the storm ; the sere and yellow leaves lie scattered round him, and with every gentle breeze that hurries past he shakes in apprehensive agony, and weeps on the devoted victims round him. But let us reflect: though the storm has howled in relentless fury, and though the trembling leaves have bid an agonized adieu to the paternal plant, is life extinguished ? No! the tree remains; the garniture of leaves that once allured the weary traveller is gone ; its outer glory is departed; a skeleton alone is left, and even that will soon be whited over by the blanching touch of winter; but will winter end the cycle of existence ? No; a multitude of verdant leaves will soon enclose those naked limbs, and the creature that erewhile the tempest hissed at, and the showers spit upon in ridicule, will raise its mighty arms in verdant exultation ; for the breath of heaven will have touched the naked scaffolding, and the tree will rise a living temple to its Maker.

And so with the Christian : when this temple is destroyed shall the soul be severed from its Creator, forlorn and unprotected ? No! He that cares for the lily of the field, and re-clothes the naked oak, will clothe us on with immortality.

Our bodies must be lowered in the dust; but will this be the term of our existence. The falling leaf may preach the mortality of the body; but does it not preach the immortality of the soul? The winter of death is fast approaching, (the warning winds are thundering round some of us,) but the soul will remain unmoved. The storms of death may howl around it, and the icy showers of a middle state may blow on it, but its life will yet remain. The tree cannot fall; for it is planted on the Rock of Ages.

Nature has spoken; but what says the Christian? We have heard a soliloquy like this : "The taper of life is fast consuming, but when its last flicker has gone out, and the smoke of sorrow is scarce wafted off, the spirit that inspired me alone can guide me heavenward. May I not learn a lesson before the final stroke has reached me? I ask the stars that shine so bright to tell me where that spirit dwells; but they turn dim, and look with cold indifference upon me, for faith alone can teach. Faith, bright, benign, and blessed guardian, leaves the stars behind, and, passing far beyond the flowers of their paradise, leads me to the gates of heaven. In bright anticipation I am standing there; but, 0! 4 flood of light bursts out upon me, for the Sun of Righteousness is shining! Unbound by symbols I have found the light from which all others spring,—the Light of life.

“Before His beams the myriad tapers of immensity are turning dim. Faith has shown me the true light : and now, farewell life; flicker in the socket, gentle flame, for immortality is mine. Hail, immortality! for I have learnt by faith the solemn mystery of life, and can now comprehend the true philosophy of death."The Collegian.

SELEUCIA PIERIA. Dr. Holt Yates lately read a paper before the SyroEgyptian Society, on“The City and Port of Seleucia Pieria,* in the Bay of Antioch.” After a brief description of the neighbourhood, in which he has been for some years a resident proprietor, the Doctor gave a sketch of the foundation and history of this once prosperous and much-frequented port of the Mediter

* To be distinguished from the famous Seleucia on the western bank of the Tigris, of which a few ruins only remain. This place is to be found on the map of Syria, a little northward of the mouth of the river Aassi, the ancient Orontes.

ranean.

After which, he described at length the existing ruins of an upper and lower city, the walls and gates, temples, amphitheatres, sepulchral grottoes, sarcophagi, and numerous other relics of antiquity; but, above all, the great tunnel, or culvert, cut through solid rock, which has been the admiration of all travellers. Dr. Yates's great object was, however, to call attention to the port, or basin, which is now in part filled up with mud and vegetation, but in others still contains water, even to a considerable depth. This great basin is two thousand feet long, by twelve hundred feet wide, occupying an area of forty-seven acres, and was, in fact, as large as the export and import basins of the East and West India Docks together. It is surrounded by a wall of large blocks of stone, which is perfect on the west side, except at the point of drainage; for there is a running stream through the basin. The inner port is entirely excavated, and its canal is one thousand feet long; the area of the outer port is about eighteen thousand feet square, and it affords good shelter, but is obstructed by sand. There are two moles, two hundred and forty paces apart, constructed of enormous stones; and a pier, called that of St. Paul, which runs west eighty paces, and then turns north-west. Colonel Chesney calculated, at the time of the Euphrates Expedition, that by availing one's self of the artificial arrangements adopted by the ancients for damming up the waters, by a wall and sluice-gate, the basin might be cleansed through the existing drain ; and, that being closed, the inner and outer harbours might also be cleansed through the existing entrance, at an expense of some £10,000; but that the harbour might be set in tolerable order, and made available to commerce, for £30,000. Captain William Allen, R.N., formerly of the Niger Expedition, who has lately explored the ruins of Seleucia, and laid down the area of the port and basin accurately, had, without any knowledge of these calculations of Colonel Chesney's, arrived at a similar result. In pointing out the advantages to be derived from

So, and

opening this port to commerce, Dr. Yates dwelt upon the absence of all good ports on the coast of Syria. That of Alexandretta is infamous as the most unhealthy on the whole coast; hence, no one can reside there : whereas Seleucia and its beautiful neighbourhood is comparatively very healthy, and would soon become the most frequented spot in Syria. The navigation of the Gulf of Alexandretta is, at times, difficult and dangerous; that of the Bay of Antioch is seldom it is nearer.

Alexandretta is under the Pasha of Adana, which is often a source of great annoyance to ship-masters trading with Aleppo. Seleucia is under the Pasha of Aleppo. Between Alexandretta and Aleppo there is the formidable Pass of Bailan, the Syrian gates of old ; between Seleucia and Antioch and Aleppo, comparatively open country. Cilicia is a country much disturbed by local dissensions : the valley of Seleucia is mainly inhabited by peaceful Christians and Ansayrii. There is plenty of fresh water. In fact, the same circumstances that existed when Seleucia became the port of Babylonia and Mesopotamia, and which induced Colonel Chesney to make it the landing-place of the Euphrates Expedition, exist to the present day, and point out the great importance of opening the old harbour, as the

best (especially for steam) in North Syria, and the most advantageous point for opening commerce and intercommunication from this direction with the Euphrates and Tigris, with Mesopotamia, Kurdistan, Babylonia, Persia, India, and the far East.-Athen@um.

very

VARIETIES.

PREPARATIONS for the erection of a pears in the institution of a Museum Midland Observatory, at Nottingham, at Bury St. Edmunds, are said to be in a good state of progress. Mr. Henry Lawson, of Bath, For purposes of communication offers a collection of astronomical, and intelligence, science continues optical, and meteorological appar. to achieve her wonders. To the Subatus, collected at the cost of £10,000, marine Telegraph will soon be added with a thousand guineas in cash be- (if no unexpected barrier prevent) sides, if a building and garden can be “ the Channel Telegraph," between found, and a yearly salary of £200 Holyhead and Dublin, over about provided for a resident astronomer. thrice the distance that separates

Dover from Calais. Mr. Stephenson Another indication of scientific is labouring in Egypt to lay a railadvancement in the provinces ap- ' way across the Isthmus of Suez, or

its neighbourhood, in order to make | lithographs, 885 pieces of vocal music, a passage to the East, almost inde- and 809 works of instrumental music, pendently of the great continents of complete the intellectual and artistical Africa and Asia; and Dr. Cullen has harvest of France for 1851.

The been surveying the Isthmus of Darien labours of French Journalism are for the similar purpose, if it be pos- worth looking back to. Of the 166 sible, of conquering the obstacle that, newspapers which enlivened the past as yet, prevents voyagers from pass- year, and many of which were its ing over that piece of land from the offspring, nearly three-fourths have Atlantic to the Pacific, without cir- ceased to exist. Several of them cumnavigating South America, by were destined to supply special wants uniting the two oceans.

which were not, it appears, so gene

rally felt by the public as the Editors More wonderful still ! Locomotives surmised, or were not, at any rate, have actually rolled between Paris sufficiently pressing to compel suband Lyons, in obedience to the force scription. As a concluding and sweepof electro-magnetism.

iny statistical remark, we may add,

that the French press, during the last The “Athenæum " furnishes an ten years, has given to the world abstract of the literary statistics of 82,000 works of literature and art. France, during the year 1851, as fol. A somewhat too sanguine organ of lows:-"The total number of books, the present system in Paris, whose newspapers, pamphlets, and works of idea of the forcing power of decrees all kinds, published during the year, and martial law seems unbounded, is 7,250; showing an increase of 142 throws out that the intention of on the preceding twelvemonth. 6,817 Government, when it has settled more works have been published in French, pressing matters, is to “create a in which are included 47 written literary movement resembling that of in the different provincial dialects. 1828." We suspect that such moveAmong the works published in foreign ments are not to be compassed by any languages, we notice 65 German, 68 dictatorship : at any rate, it would, we English, 93 Spanish, and 160 Latin think, be advisable, with such projects, publications. Of these, 4,219 were to reconsider the lists of proscription, printed in Paris alone, and 3,031 in which contain a host of literary names. the departments; Algeria furnishing It would be rather awkward if Au44 for her share. Reprints and new gustus, when he wished to make editions figure in the list for 1,677 ; his literary movement,” were to find leaving 5,573 works which may be out that Virgil had been sent to considered new. 182 geographical Cayenne. maps and plans, 3,961 engravings and

POETRY.

TO A DEPARTED PARENT.
My mother, O my mother! and hast thou reach'd thy home,
Where clouds ne'er hide the light of day, and tempests never come ;
Where thy form is garb'd with glory, and thy brow is crown'd

with gold,
And thou sittest down at God's right hand in happiness untold ?
My mother, O my mother! and dost thou see the face
Of that most blessed Saviour, who saved thee by His

? Does He lead thee by the silvery stream, dost thou hear His tender

grace

voice, And, cheer'd by His approval, does thy beating heart rejoice ?

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