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In the year 1807, England was solicited by Portugal and Spain to assist in defending those countries from the aggressions of the French ; and a large military force was sent over to them, under the command of Sir Arthur Wellesley, whose important services and talents enabled Portugal io free herself from her enemy, and whose subsequent achievements and successes at Barossa, Almeida, Àlbuera, Talavera, and Vittoria, in Spain, were principally instrumental in obliging the French to evacuate that country likewise.
The British government having obtained information that the Danish feet was to be placed under the control of France, a British fleet under Admiral Gambier, and a land force under Lord Cathcart, were sent to Copenbagen ; and on the 7th of September, 1807, they obliged the Danish general to deliver up, by capitulation, their whole fleet, consisting of 18 ships of the line, 15 frigates, 6 smaller vessels, and 25 gun-boais, together with all the stores.
In 1808, the French power having prevailed to reduce Austria, Prussia, Russia, Holland, and the Italian States, to a state of humiliation, those countries were compelled to make peace with France, and to submit to the condition of resisting the introduction of English goods into any of their respective ports, with the view of ruining the commerce of this kingdom. But this state of things led to some consequences prejudicial to the French arms. The shutting up the continent from English commerce having been enforced by the most arbitrary and oppressive conduct on the part of the French government, it was found intolerable, and the sacrifices required likely to have no end. Russia, therefore, abandoned her alliance with France, and this rupture induced Buonaparte to invade the Russian dominions with a force of near 900,000 men, but on penetrating to and reaching the city of Moscow, and finding it burnt, so as to be inadequate to afford shelter to his army, he was compelled to cominence a retreat in the depth of winter; harrassed by the Russians on every side, bis army was not only defeated, but almost appihilated, by the sword, sickness, and various calamities, arising from the inclemency of the season, "The disastrous termination of the French expedition to Russia gave an opportunity for Austria and Prussia to adopt the same measures of abandoning their connection with France, and enter into an alliance with Russia, to destroy which, the French Ruler, the following year (1813) collected a powerful army in Saxony, but being attacked by the allied powers, and defeated in the battle of Leipsic, was compelled to retreat to France, followed by the united forces of his enemies; who, undaunted and victorious, in their turn invaded and penetrated into the very heart of France, to seek and to ensure peace to Europe.
England, after sustaining the burden of a continued war of upwards of twenty years succession, was still ready to animate and assist her allies on every occasion, and put forth her strength with undiminished ardour; to Spain and Portugal she gave the assistance of a powerful force, under the auspices of a general unequalled in the annals of his country, and whose talent and genius not only compelled their enemies to retire, but planted his own banners on French ground. England has been uniform, persevering, undaunted, and undismayed, in a contest of unexampled difficulty; her conduct has gained her the admiration of Europe, as worthy the character of a magnanimous, brave, and generous people.
But the glorious events which have lately taken place in France have left her little to fear, and every thing to hope. Buonaparte, once the idol of one balf of Europe, and the terror of the other, has at length sunk into that state of degradation wbich his criines have justly merited ; and the ihrone he had so disgracefully usurped is now occupied by a descendant of Henry IV. Whatever may have been the various opinions respecting the struggles of the French for liberty, and the means they have taken to obtain it, all those who take a delight in human happiness, will rejoice that the French people have united in the choice of a prince, whose reign seems to promise the return of liberty and peace to that unhappy country, as well as the rest of the nations of Europe, who by the tyranny of Buonaparte had been so long deprived of those invaluable blessings : and England, ainidst ihe general joy, may contemplate the fruits of her former painful conflicts; and rejoice that those who have been so often improperly styled her natural enemies, are now her declared friends, and happy under a constitution and government like her own.
BOTANY is a science which, in its utmost extent, signifies not only a general knowledge of plants, but also of the oses to which they may be applied, either in medicinc or chemistry.
It is impossible here to give more than an outline of the nature of plants in general, and a brief definition of the leading terms made use of by botanists. The external covering of plants, the epidermis or cuticle, is commonly transparent and smooth; sometimes it is hairy or downy; and sometimes of so hard a nature, that even fint has been detected in its composition. The equisetum hyemale or Dutch rush, serves as a file to polish wood, ivory, and even brass. Under the cuticle, is found the cellular integument, which is analogous to the rete mucosum of animals ; it is, like that, of a pulpy texture, and the seat of colour. It is commonly green in the leaves and stems, and is dependent for its hue on the action of light. When the cellular integument is removed, the bark presents itself, which in plants or branches only one year old, consists of a siinple layer. In the branches and stems of trees it consists of as many layers as they are years old. The uses of bark are familiar to us. The Peruvian bark affords “ a cooling draught to the fevered lip; while that of the cinnamon yields a rich cordial; and that which is stripped from the oak, is used for the purposes of tanning. Iminediately under the bark is situated ihe wood, which forins the great bulk of trees and shrubs. This also consists of numerous layers, as may be observed in the fir, and many other trees; and from these concentric circles, or rings, the age of the tree may be determined. Within the centre of the wood is the medulla or pith, which js a cellular substance, juicy when young, extending from the roots to the summits of the branches. In some plants, as in grasses, it is hollow, merely lining the stem. In describing the characters of plants, we shall treat of their root, buds, irunk, leaves, props, inflorescence, fructification, and classification.
Roots are necessary to plants, to fix and hold thein in the earth, from which they imbibe nourishment. Roots are either annual, or living for one season, as in barley ; biennial, which survive one winter, and, after perfecting their seed, perish at the end of the following summer, as wheat; or perenniul, which remain and produce blossoms for an indefinite number of years, as those of trees and shrubs in general. The root consists of two parts, the cauler and the radiculu. The caucer or stuip is the body or kuob of the root, from which the trunk and branches ascend, and the fibrous roots descend. The radicula is the fibrous part of the root, branching from the cauder. Roots are:
1. Fibrous, or consisting entirely of fibres, as in many grasses and herbaceous plants.
2. Creeping, or having a subterraneous stem, spreading horizontally in the ground, throwing out numerous fibres, as in mint and couch-grass.
3. Spindle-shaped, as in the radish and carrot, which produce numerous fibres for the absorption of nutriment.
4. Stumped, or apparently bitten off, as in the primrose.
5. Tuberous, or knobbed, as in the potatoe, which consists of fleshy knobs, connected by common stalks or fibres.
6. Bulbous, as in the crocus.
7. Granulated, or having a cluster of little bulbs or scales connected by a common fibre, as in the saxifrage.
Buds. These are, in most instances, guarded by scales, and furnished with gumn or woolliness, as an additional defence. Buds are yarious in their forms, but very uniform in the same species, or even genus. They enfold the embryo plant.
TRUNK. The trunk of trees includes the stems or stalks, which are of seven kinds. The stem, as it advances in growth, is either able to support itself, or twines round other bodies. It is either simple, as in the lily; or branched, as in other plants. The parts are :
1. Caulis, the stem, which bears both leaves and flowers, as the trunks and branches of all trees and shrubs, as well as of many herbaceous plants.
2. Culmus, a straw or culm, the peculiar stem of grasses, rushes, and similar plants.
3. Scapus, or stalk, springs immediately from the root, hearing lowers and fruit but not leaves, as in the primrose or cowslip.
4. Pedunculus, the flower-stalk, springs from the stem or branches, bearing flowers and fruit, but not leaves.
5. Petiolus, the foot-stalk, is applied exclusively to the stalk of a leaf.
Leaves. These are generally so formed as to present a large surface to the atmosphere. When they are of any other hue than green, they are said, ia botanical language, to be coloured. The internal surface of a leaf is highly vascular and pulpy, and is clothed with a cuticle, very various in different plants; but its pores are always so constructed as to admit of the requisite evaporation or absorption of moisture, as well as to admit and give out air. Light also acts through this cuticle, in a different manner. The effect of moisture must have been observed by every one. By absorption from the atmosphere, the leaves are refreshed; but by evaporation, especially when separated from their stalks, they soon fade and wither. The nutritious juices, imbibed from the earth and become sap, are carried by appropriate vessels into the substance of the leaves, and these juices are returned from each leaf, not into the wood again but into the bark. The sap is carried into the leaves for the purpose of being acted upon by air and light, with the assistance of heat and moisture. By all these agents, a most material change is wrought in the component parts of the sap, according to the nature of the secretions which are elaborated, whether resinous, oily, mucilaginous, saccharine, bitter, acrid, or alkaline. The green colour of the leaves is almost entirely owing to the action of light. Leaves are subject to a sort of disease, by which they become partially spotted or streaked, as with white or yellow, and in this state are termed variegated.. The irritable nature of leaves is very extraordinary. The mimosa pudica, or sensitive plant, common in hot-houses, when touched by any extraneous body, folds up its leaves one after another, while their foot-stalks droop, as if dying.
PROPs, or fulcra. These are:
1. Stipula, a leafy appendage to the true leaves or to their stalks, for the most part in pairs.
2. Bractea, a leafy appendage to the flower or its stalk, very conspicuous in the lime-tree.
3. Spina, a thorn, proceeds from the wood itself, as in the wild pear-tree, which loses its thorns by cultivation.
4. Aculeus, a prickle, proceeds from the bark only, as in the rose and bramble.
5. Cirrus, a tendril or clasper, is a support for weak stems, and enables them to climb rocks, or the trunks of lofty trees.
6. Glandula, a gland, is a small tumour secreting a sweet, resinous, or fragrant liquor, as on the calyx or cup of the moss-rose, and the foot-stalks of passion-flowers.
7. Pilus, a hair, which includes all the various kinds of