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not be a very wild inference to draw, that the
germs of the sturdy oak may also add to the
sturdiness of the human family. Should
there be anything in Dr. Marx's notion, we
must not be startled if we behold an addition
to the usual puffs in the grocers' windows
asking us to "TRY OUR FAMILY ACORNS!"


  THE heart may live a lifetime in an hour,
               And well embrace
  A lifetime's energy, and strength, and power,
               Within that space.

  We do it wrong, Time by one rule to reckon;
                For by our state
  As our stern fears deter, or fond hopes beckon
                Should it bear date.

  A minute's agony appears a day:
                 Years of delight
  Seem, traced by memory, having passed away,
                 Transient as light.

  With Love Time flies, Hate makes it linger;
                 Says Youth, "Be past!"
  Age, pointing to its sands with eager finger,
                 Murmurs, "Too fast!"


OUT of the crowd of London we must get,
if it be only for a day, and take a walk by the
sea-side. The water sparkles; the warm sun
has caused all parasols to open from their bud,
and with raised stalks they blossom gorgeously.
For the last ten minutes a stout gentleman's
head has floated like a black buoy on the
surface of the tide. There is a fish-woman;—
do you know what fish is in season? Fish, no
doubt, get tired of the monotony of sea, and
come to the coast-side at their own fashionable
times, when they are netted now and then by
fishermen. We also go to the sea-side, and
accept the bait of indefatigable fishers after
men, the lodging-house proprietors;—for
families of fish in their season, or of Londoners
in theirs, alike are skinned and dished. Some
of the fish must travel many miles to get a
sniff of shore air, and they surely have no railways
in the ocean. All the land in the world,
I have been told at school, would barely
cover the Pacific. Twenty-seven miles of
water in the world, for every ten miles of land.
What a wilderness that is for a sprat to lose
his way in!

Wilderness?—not at all. We talk about the
watery waste, as if it were just a salt desert,—
very useful as a highway to the nations, but
in itself a barren surface of salt water, playing
pitch and toss with ships, to the distress of
passengers. The fact is, that not only does the
bed of the sea consist of hills and dales, springs,
mountains and volcanoes, differing from our
own only in the character of their abundant
vegetation,—not only are these hills and plains
peopled with forms innumerable, but, in the
great flood above, zone over zone of water teems
with life. One set of marine animals peoples
the region between high and low water mark,
and declines to mix with the creatures of the
sphere immediately below, which again keep
up their position in an equally exclusive
manner. So there are ten such zones to pass
before you touch ground in deep water, just
as in a thoroughly enlightened county town
there may be ten sets, each to itself a world,
between the squire with his right foot on a
carriage step, and the labourer with his right
foot on a spade. If the expanse of the sea be
vast, vast also is the variety of its inhabitants;
fishes, crustaceans, mollusca, polyps, and yet
more,—classes, genera, and species,—each
individual almost incredibly fecund. The spawn
of a single adult oyster will supply twelve
thousand barrels. In the Arctic Sea the water
is for hundreds of miles coloured olive green
by little entomostraca, the whale's food.
Scoresby calculated that there were twenty-
three thousand, eight hundred and eighty-
eight million million of them in a cubic mile:
of course their zone, however, is not a mile
deep. Life in "the ocean wave" is gayer when
we come between the tropics. In the
narrative of the exploring "Voyage of the Fly"
among the coral reefs north-east of Australia,
there is a quaint illustration of this, not less
quaint to the unscientific reader for the
number of strange names with which he is
perplexed: "A block of coral rock, that was
brought up by a fish-hook from the bottom at
one of our anchorages, was interesting from
the vast variety and abundance of animal life
there was about it. It was a mere worn dead
fragment, but its surface was covered with
brown, crimson, and yellow nulliporæ, many
small actiniæ, and soft branching corallines,
sheets of flustra and eschara, and delicate
reteporæ, looking like beautiful lace-work
carved in ivory. There were several small
sponges and alcyonia, seaweeds of two or three
species, two species of comatula, and one of
ophiura of the most delicate colours and
markings, and many small, flat, round corals,
something like nummulites in external
appearance. On breaking into the block,
boring-shells of several species were found
buried in it; tubes formed by annelida pierced
it in all directions, many still containing their
inhabitants, while two or three worms, or
nereis, lay twisted in and out among its
hollows and recesses, in which, likewise, were
three small species of crabs." What do you
say to that? A London lodging-house during
the height of the Exhibition season is not by
a quarter so well crammed. "This block,"
says Mr. Jukes, "was not above a foot in
diameter, and was a perfect museum in itself,
while its outside glared with beauty from
the many brightly and variously-coloured
animals and plants. It was by no means
a solitary instance; every block that could
be procured from the bottom, in from ten
to twenty fathoms, was like it." The blocks