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tions have not kept pace with our consumption-hence we are obliged to have recourse to foreign markets. The Oak is a very majestic-looking tree, and has a beautiful spreading foliage; the fruit of it is called the acorn. It is not confined to cold countries, but flourishes even in Palestine. Mr. Burckhardt, the celebrated traveller, tells us, that at no great distance from Nazareth, he found every where a grateful shade of fine oaks; and the country round Damascus seemed to owe part of its attractiveness to large plantations of this tree. The wood of the oak is used for ship-building-it is pre-eminent for this: the house carpenter also makes considerable use of its timber for beams, rafters, staircases, and wainscoting; and from the bark the physician gets a useful tonic, and the tanner, by its astringent properties converts the skins of animals-some into material for the most delicate gloves, and others into the rough woodman's mittens, besides numberless other things.
One species of the Oak (quercus suber) is called the Holm Oak. This valuable tree supplies us with cork, which, as you know, aids man in a variety of ways, from the little stopper of an ink-bottle to the fisherman's floats for his nets, and the safety linings of a life-boat.* Then as to the acorn, the fruit of the oak; it proves a nutritive food for many animals, and, in times of necessity, has been used by man himself: and even the ashes and their lye are very useful for the cleansing of linen
Large pieces of cork fastened underneath the seats of a common boat, give it the character of a life-boat.
and the purifying of wine; and the curious excrescence on the leaf, called oak-gall, is the principal substance of which writing-ink is made. Thus every part of this favourite of English trees is useful; for not only does it provide shelter and food for birds of every wing, and grace our plantations, but, as you have seen, the ship and house builder-the physician and farmer-the bleacher and fisherman-the sailor and wine-merchant, go to some part or other of this valuable tree for their various wants; and the ink made from the oak-gall puts us in possession of our dear Julius's thoughts, though he is buried in the wilds of Australia. Whilst, therefore, we give the dominion of the forest to the cedar of Lebanon, the oak takes the second place. And ere I close about the Oak, I suppose I may say, that most little boys remember the 29th of May as oak-apple day, which commemorates the deliverance of King Charles II., who escaped his pursuers by secreting himself in a large oak.* Thus, my beloved children, the next time you sit under the shade of the Oak at Penyard, count over how many things this noble tree is used for, and think of the goodness of God, who thus considered man, when he created it on the third day.
The Elm is a very lofty tree; it grows taller than the oak, but is not so spreading in its branches: it abounds in Devonshire, and there
The period of King Charles's escape was A.D. 1651;-the Oak was situated in the farm of Boscobel, belonging to a farmer called Penderell, in Staffordshire, and was ever after called the Royal Oak.
are some of peculiar beauty in Torquay and Paignton. The Elm is useful to the turner for pumps-blocks; and the carver, seeing how little the elm chips, cuts out his leaves and flowers from it. It is difficult to decide whether the Elm is named in Scripture, as, though so called in Hosea iv., yet the same word is in other places translated Oak.
The Ash is a tree very beautiful in its foliage, and in the smoothness of its bark, and has an almost endless variety of uses; its great properties are toughness and flexibility. All trades go to the Ash for some department of their labour; and the little boy, when he cannot get a piece of yew for his bow, always considers the ash the next best ; and the sailor, well knowing the fine spring of an ash-oar, never chooses any other. Thus the ash meets us on every side, both by land and sea, as a most useful tree. The mountain ash is of smaller stature than the ash itself, but it looks beautiful with its white blossoms of spring, and the red berries of autumn. In plantations it affords many a delicious repast to the little songsters of the wood.
The Beech is a great favourite with turners and upholsterers, and for water-works beneath the stream, it is said even to pass beyond the oak. Its leaves, when dried, are fragrant, and are used sometimes for mattresses: while the nuts, wrapped up in their little prickly covering, afford many a sweet meal to the beautiful little squirrel, who loves to pitch his tent near the fruitful beech. The grain of the wood of this tree is so fine, that in old times, before mill-board was made, they
used to cover books with it. The foliage of the Beech is small and very close.
The Poplar. This tree, with our forefathers, was in great request for avenues, but now the custom of planting it in this way has grown into disuse but though formal in rows, yet its very stateliness adds greatly to the beauty of the landscape. The Aspen belongs to this family. The leaves of this tree have a longer stem than most others, thus the least air moves them; and on a sultry day there is something inexpressibly refreshing to hear the gentle murmur in its topmost branches. The wood of all this family is used by the turner for white vessels.
The Alder is used for water-pipes and sluices, and also of old times for ship-building. It bears wet admirably. The bark is used by dyers. Fir Tree. This name embraces a large family of hardy trees, of the utmost benefit to man. They are all evergreens.
The Silver Fir. This is a tree very beautiful in its growth: it flourishes in Germany, and is also known in England and Ireland.
Scotch Fir grows wild in Scotland, and yields most valuable deals, both red and yellow-very durable.
Norway Fir affords the white deal, and abounds in Norway.
Spruce Fir. Many of these grow in North America, and some in the West India Islands; where the negroes make spruce-beer overnight, and bring it to the ships in the morning in canoes, assuring you "it is very excellent."
Hemlock Spruce is a native of North America, of beautiful growth; its bark is useful to the tanner.
The Larch is a tree, in growth something like the fir, but it is not an evergreen. You remember the large woods of this in Glenmore, and in Coolmoney in the Glen of Imale, how we used to watch those little emerald buds that stud the stems in the opening of springnature does not afford again so bright a green. The larch has been used for ship-building, with great success. The Alps and Apennines are the home of the larch; and it will grow on the coldest and most barren hills. It is a tree most beneficial to man.
The Walnut Tree is fragrant in its leaves-very fragrant—and delicious in its fruit, which also, in its green state, are made into pickles. The wood of the walnut is of a beautiful dark colour, and is used by joiners, &c. The walnut is in abundance in Kent, especially near Maidstone. It is very graceful in plantations.
The Chestnut is a favourite with most little boys, owing to its fruit, which, however, is not very wholesome, unless the nuts are roasted. The wood of the chestnut is esteemed next to the oak, and yet the tree is sometimes deceptive, and though it makes a fair show, it is decayed at the heart; affording a painful illustration of those who look well before men, but whose souls are not right with God.
The Willow. This lowly tree was used by Israel in the construction of their commemorative dwellings at the great feast of Tabernacles. The lofty cedars I alluded to made the uprights and rafters of their