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THE SNOWDROP_EMBLEM OF
and they grew yearly in greater abundance,
and he shared them with many, who CONSOLATION.
planted them in gardens; but in process of “ The Snowdrop, Winter's timid child,
time the hills and vales were adorned with Awakes to life bedewed with tears,
these delicate blossoms, and for many years And flings around its fragrance mild;
they were called “Rennie's Consolation,” And, where no rival flowerets bloom, Amidst the bare and chilling gloom
In the floral language at the present time A beauteous gem appears.'
the snow-drop means consolation. Thus
we see with Mrs. Hemans, how flowers THE snowdrop (Galanthus Nivalis) heralds in the spring. Its scientific name
speak of hope to the fainting heart;
With a voice of promise they come and part; is from two Greek words signifying milk
They sleep in dust through the winter hours, and flower, given on account of the milky The break forth in glory, bring flowers, bright whiteness of its blossoms. It is remarkable flowers.” that this lovely flower rears its blossoms In France this chaste flower is called often under a covering of snow, and holds perce neige, as there, like here, it rears its its tiny head in safety even when tossed tiny blossoms often through the snow. Mrs. backwards and forwards by rough winds. Barbauld speaks of it, as if " by Flora's Like a meek and modest child it meekly breath, she had changed an icicle into a bends its head, submissive to the ordained flower.” It is related that this lovely, laws; and HE, “who tempers the wind to the modest flower spoke consolation to the sad shorn lamb,” has so attached its corolla to the heart of Eve, when mourning over the stalk, that it moves with the wind in every desolate appearance of the earth during position, without danger of being snapped | winter. Eve, weeping over the black deasunder, whileits drooping moisture, and pure spair the winter's storms had made, madly whiteness of its petals, cause them to act as wished she had been dead; when lo! an reflectors of light and heat to the anthers. angel, on a task of mercy, came to raise her
The following is a beautiful idea as to drooping heart, and bade her cheer. Catchthe birth of the snowdrop : Among the ing, as he spake, a flake of falling snow, vine-clad hills of France lived a poor “He breathed on it, and bade it take soldier's widow and her only child, a boy, A form, and bud and blow." deeply attached to his mother, who fell ill | Then did the snow-flake as desired, and and died. Daily did poor Rennie--for that Eve smiled upon the beauteous flower which was the boy's name - visit his mother's thus brought consolation to her sorrowing grave, and watered the ground which heart. “This flower," the glorious angel covered her mortal remains with his warm, said, “is an earnest that sun and summer affectionate tears. Winter came, with his soon shall be, when all things shall again frost and snow, and poor Rennie fell ill, and look fresh and green.” The angel's miseion was unable for many weeks to visit his being ended, away up to heaven he flew, beloved parent's resting - place. When but where on earth he stood a ring of snowspring re-appeared he again turned his drops formed a poesy. steps to the sacred spot, where his mother
“ And thus the snowdrop, like the bow slept the sleep of death. He knelt upon That spans the cloudy sky, the cold earth, and his tears fell fast upon Became a symbol, whence we know it, as before, and where his tears fell ap
That brighter days are uigh." peared a tiny blade or leaf, struggling to Season after season this and other flowers pierce the hard soil; the boy espied it, and come to remind us that God's hand is workas it spoke hopefully to the despairing one, ing gradually, even as it did at first, when he tenderly scraped aside the mould, so he called the earth out of nothing, and that the little plant might feel the influ- robed it with verdure, and when each sucence of the sun's rays. Not long after this, cessive day witnessed the fresh and luxuria group of lovely white blossoms were ob- ant rowth of primeval vegetation. served to bend sorrowfully over the sod, From our earliest youth, the blossoms and Rennie, remembering his mother's love “link the heart to nature;" yet they are a for flowers, said, “My mother has sent blessing for which man forgets to be grateful. them from the spirit land.” The peasants “ Flowers that spring by vale or stream, were amazed, as they had never seen such Each one may claim them for his own." lowers before, and they said, " Each snow
For these let us offer “thanks, blessings, white drop quivers upon its stem like a tear love,” to the all-beneficent, for these his about to fall; his mother has sent these to lavish boons, but most of all for their console him.” He nurtured then tenderly, I “ Heavenward influences.". M. P.
and liquors, Un marchand de vins fins et de
liqueurs. LESSONS IN FRENCH.
In the first example we write vin in the Nouns-(continued).
singular, because this word is taken in
definitely, and does not imply the idea of Of number in the Nouns which are Objects plurality; but in the last, vins is written of another Noun. Substantives imme- with an é, because the mind is compelled diately governed by another with the pre- to think of several sorts of wines and position of, de.
liquors. Singular. The hand of woman, Une Of cases in which two Nouns, united by main de femme; The act of a fool, Une the Preposition of express the idea of a thing action de fou ; A child's play, Un jeu d'en- formed by Extraction or Composition. fant; A horse's tail, Une queue de cheval ; Singular. A jelly of apples, Une gelée A statue of marble, Une statue de marbre. de pomme ; Syrup of lemon, Du sirop de
Plural. The hands of woman, Des mains limon ; Olive oil, De l'huile d'olive. de femme; The acts of a fool, Des actions Plural. Stewed pears, pigeons, Une de fou; A child's plays, Des jeux d'enfant; compête de poires, de pigeons; Marmalade Horse's tails, Des queues de cheval; Statues of apricots, Une marmelade d'abricots; A of marble, Des statues de marbre.
dish of chesnuts, Une assiette de marrons. Here the substantives which follow the Here the preposition and the noun which preposition modify the subject designated follows are no longer used only to modify by the first one, which represents the prin- the subject of the preposition, but they cipal idea; and the words, woman, fool, show how it is constituted, or composed, if child, &c., used in a vague and indefinite we may say so, and we call this last noun sense, serve less to express the idea of the determinative. object which they represent, than to qualify Rule. The determinative remains in the the substantive with which they are united singular when it concurs with the constituby the preposition of, de; in fact, a woman's tion of the subject by extraction, as apple, voice is a feminine voice, the action of a fool lemon, olive, in the foregoing examples; but is a foolish action, the play of a child is a it is employed in the plural if the formation childish play, &c.
of the subject takes place by composition. In all cases similar to the above, and Let us explain this rule. There is ex. where no peculiar reason requires the traction, when the article which is employed plural, the substantive employed as a regi- to compose the subject has changed its men or object remains in the singular. nature in the compound which it has been
Observation. In conformity with this used to produce; thus, when we make rule we write, Stumps, Des troncs d'arbre, jelly, syrup, oil, we employ only a part of with arbre in the singular; but speaking of the apples, lemons, and olives; and neither trees to be plarted again, we say, Sets of of those preparations keep the form, nor the trees, Des pieds d'arbres, because here the appearance, of those fruits. In these cases words pieds d'arbres are taken for the trees we think but little of the individuality of themselves.
either fruit, and their names must remain However, it is customary, and the in the singular. When, on the other hand, Academy approves of it, to write des pieds the article used to form the subject of the de giroflée, plants of gillyflower, des pieds de preposition remains entire, or nearly so, basilic, plants of basil, des pieds de mar- there is no extraction, but composition, the jolaine, plants of majóram, because these idea of individuality becomes striking, replants, composed of several slips, do not calls to the mind that of plurality for the present a distinct idea of individuality; and, whole, and the determinative must accordbesides, we generally say, de la giroflée, ingly take the plural; it is the case with some gillyflower, du basilic, some basil, &c. the words poires, pigeons, abricots, marrons,
Rule. When the substantive, used as an which remain entire in the composition of object, implies necessarily the idea of the subject, and may be counted one by plurality, it must be used in the plural; as, one; in the marmelade, the individuals are À forest of oaks, Une forêt de chênes; A not so distinct, it is true, but the apricots couple of horses, Une couple de chevaux ; have not entirely changed their nature, as A merchant of engravings, Un marchand in a jelly, syrup, &c. de gravures.
Of eases in which two Nouns being sepaObservations. A merchant or some mer-rated by the Preposition of, the first exchants of wine, Un marchand ou des mar- presses an idea of Capacity or Agglomerachands de vin ;'A merchant of rich wines ' tion.
Singular. A barrel of vinegar, Un baril | law, Le droit se divise en deux classes, le de vinaigre; A bushel of wheat, Un bois- droit public et le droit privé. seau de blé; A bouquet of jasmine, Un In the last example, the plural is used, bouquet de jasmin.
because we wish to say, There are horses of Plural. A barrel of olives, Un baril several breeds, Il y a des chevaux de difféd'olives ; A bushel of beans, Un boisseau de rentes espéces. haricots ; A bouquet of roses, Un bouquet By taking the trouble to analyze the de roses.
sentences which appear doubtful to the Rule. When the first substantive ex- mind, it is easy to avoid committing any presses an idea of capacity or agglomera- faults. tion, the second may be considered as being Of Nouns used with the Preposition of, determinative, and always remains in the de, but not preceded immediately by another singular, if it specifies a thing which cannot Noun.-Of, preceded by an adjective or a be, or is not usually, counted; in all other past participle; as, cases, it always takes the plural. The above Singular. A child full of good disposiexamples leave no ambiguity about the tion, Un enfant plein de bonne volonté ; application of this rule.
A prince thirsting, for fame, Un prince Observations. The rules which we have altéré de renommée ; A painter full of just given are not strictly applicable, and talent, Un peintre rempli de talent. it is necessary to examine carefully how Plural. A man full of vices, Un homme the determinative must be understood. plein de défauts ; An author craving apIn the locution, Ajuice of herbs, un jus plause, Un auteur insatiable de louanges ; d'herbes, the determinative herbs is plural, A young lady full of talents, Une jeune although the juice is made by extraction, personne remplie de talents. and the herbs have entirely changed their The least reflection is sufficient to deternature ; we are induced to do it, not only mine, in all cases similar to these, whether because several herbs enter into its forma- the singular or plural must be used. Bonne tion, but because those herbs are of a volonté is in the singular, because we do different nature.
not say, Des bonnes volontés ; défauts is in On the other hand, we write, A porridge the plural, because we would not say, of beans, Une purée de haricots' ; A cullis of man full of vices, if he had only one vice. craw-fish, Un coulis d'écrevisses ; A pot of Gloire, taken in a general sense, is never preserves, Un pot de confitures, because used in the plural; but it should' be, if we those words, beans, craw-fish, and preserves had to express, He is craving for all sorts in French, are most generally used in the of glory, il est affamé de tous les genres de plural; for we do not say, I love the bean, gloires ; because here glory is particularised, the craw-fish, the preserve, J'aime le hari- and we understand there are several sorts cot, l'écrevisse, la confiture ; but, Les hari- of it. cots, les écrevisses, les confitures. But we Louanges praises, cannot possibly be in write, A porridge of potatoes, Une purée the singular, because one of them alone de pomme de terre, because we say, the would not be enough for a craving man. potato is good, La pomme de terre est bonne. Talent, in the painter's case, is singular,
When a qualificative is joined to the because we mean but one talent of an determinative, it restricts and particularizes eminent order; but in the other instance, its meaning, and consequently disposes it we intend to say that the young lady posto take the plural; thus, although we think sesses all the talents which are acquired by it should be written, I prefer to draw heads a complete education. of women rather than of men, J'aime mieux Of Substantives preceded, as Determinadessiner des têtes de femme que des têtes tive, by any Preposition bút of, de.-Pred'homme, we should employ the plural in position à ; as, two of the following sentences :—Cannibals Singular. To travel on foot, Voyager à used to cut off the heads of men killed in pied; A safe with a secret lock, Un coffre battle, Les cannibales coupaient les tétes à secret. d'hommes tués sur le champ de bataille ; Plural. To jump with the feet close, There are two klnds of rights in law, Il y à Sauter à pieds joints ; Horned cattle, Des deux espèces de droit; There are several bêtes à cornes ; To go on foot, to be on foot. breeds of horses, Il y a plusieurs espèces de a footman, Aller à pied, être sur pied, valet chevaux.
de pied, are expressions which usage has In the second example, the singular is consecrated in the singular, because the used, because we wish to say, Law is divided mode in which the word foot is used iminto two classes, public law and private plies only a modification of the words aller,
être, valet, without the mind being troubled Plural. He is without shoes, Il est sans with the idea of the number of feet; but in souliers. this phrase, Sauter à pieds joints, the word The words pain and argent have no joints, awaking naturally the idea of two plural in this acceptation; besides, the prefeet, requires the plural.
position sans, meaning a complete exclusion, Secret is in the singular, because we think must generally be followed by the singular, only of a lock which is a secret one ; but unless we are compelled to think of several cornes is in the plural, because we mean objects, as is the case in the other exanimals that always have two horns. amples; (a man always wears two shoes.) Preposition en, in; as,
The preposition sur, upon, on; as, Singular. Constant in love, Constant en Singular. To receive letter after letter, amour ; To fly from flower to flower, Voler Recevoir lettre sur lettre. de fleur en fleur; I made a marmalade of Plural To begin anew, Recommencer them, Je les ai mis en marmelade ; A house sur de nouveaux frais. covered with slate, Une maison couverte en Lettre sur lettre means, a letter after ardoise.
another letter; it is an expression similar to Plural. Fertile in expedients, Fertile en that of de fleur en fleur, from flower to expédients ; To lie in, Etre en couches ; flower. They are eut to pieces, Ils sont taillés en Frais has no singular; that is the reason pièees ; A gown trimmed with pearls, Une why we write, To travel at a great expense, robe garnie en perles.
Voyager à grands frais. Amour, in the plural, would be nonsense Remarks on the Preceding Chapters.-We applied to constant.
have already said enough on this subject to Fertile conveys the idea of more than one enable the reader to ascertain with accuracy expedient, or else the sentence would have in what cases he must use the plural or the
singular in locutions of this kind; it is It is easily perceived when the plural easily perceived that the singular is more must be used after a certain class of ad- generally employed than the other number, jectives; as, full, filled, craving, rich, which must be rejected whenever the sense abounding, and others similar to them. of the sentence does not convey the idea of De fleur en fleur signifies, from one flower plurality in a clear and distinct manner. to another, it is clear that a fly, or butter- But, in the mean time, particular care must fly, cannot leave two flowers at once. be taken to study the real meaning of the
Marmelade is in the singular, because sentence, as being the only sure guide in there is but one preparation so called.
the case. Pièces is in the plural, because they have There are, however, many instances where been cut into a great number of pieces. either number may be employed indiffer
Ardoise is in the singular, because the entlyLet us try to explain still more exslates which cover the house are taken as plicitly what characterises each number. a whole, the mind not being occupied with General Rule.--If we speak of a species the idea of plurality in regard to them. or of a kind taken generally, the singular
Perles is in the plural, because the mind must be used. divides them, counts them, if we may say If the mind refers more particularly to so, and is pleased by exaggerating their individuals, the plural must be used. number.
If we say, During Lent Catholics live The preposition par, by; as,
wholly upon fish, Les Catholiques, pendant Singular. I gave him my property by le carểme, ne se nourissent que de poisson, deed, Je lui donnai mon bien par contract. we use the singular for poisson, because we
Plural. They divided themselves into think only of the kind of food, without any troops, Il se divisèrent par troupes.
reference to the number of fish. There is but one contract, and there are But if we say, Lobsters and crabs live several troops.
only on fish, Les homards et les crabes ne The preposition pour, for ; as,
vivent que de poissons, we represent to ourPeter, shoemaker for men only, Pierre, selves lobsters and crabs living upon a cordonnier pour homme.
number of fishes; the idea dwells upon the Homme is used in the singular, because individuals of the fish tribe, and accordits meaning is vague and indefinite, and ingly the plural is used. stands here as a mere qualification.
In fine, there are cases in which the The preposition sans, without; as, plural seems to give more force to the ex
Singular. I am without bread or money, pression; as, for instance, if we say, as a Je suis sans pain et sans argent..
matter of fact only, Catacombs are filled with skulls and dead bones, Les catacombs In all the above examples of the singusent remplies de têtes et d'os de mort. lar, the second substantives are used in a
But, if we wish to move an audience, we general and indefinite sense, as mere qualishould say, Think of the horrid picture fications; whereas, in the plural, these which strikes our eyes,-a valley covered same words are taken in a sense of indiwith skulls and dead bones! Figurez-vous viduality. l'affreux tableau qui frappe nos regards; For instance, des caprices de femme, are une vallée jonchée de têtes et d'os de morts. caprices which are attributed to women in
The mind refers, in the first instance, to general; but, une pension de femmes is combones as those of a corpse; while, in the posed of individuals, and the word femmes other, it is struck by the horror of so many conveys the idea of plurality. persons killed and having their bones left Des marcharnds de plume are men who in the valley.
sell quantities of feathers to make beds; The Dictionary of the Academy should we cannot have the idea of counting these not be consulted for the explanation of this feathers; but un marchand de plumes is difficulty of our language, because, being man who sells pens to write with, and at the result of the co-operation of many, it once we see that we may buy one, two, or too often contains rules implying contra- twenty of them; the sense is individual, diction to one another. It is by common definite. sense and reasoning, according to the rules Merchants of straw, hay, cider, are men we have laid down, that the student must who do not sell singly one, two straws, &c., be guided. We will add some few more but who sell, as a whole, strau, hay, &c., illustrations, so as to leave as little doubt then the sense is indefinite, and does not .as possible on the subject:
admit of plurality ; but a merchant of Singular.
trees, apricots, grapes, &c., always sell
those articles by the piece, or, on account of Fancies of a woman, Des caprices de femme. their number, sells them by the quantity; Heaps of grass. Des tas d'herbe.
then the sense is individual; you may buy To fight with the fist. Se battre à coup
an apricot, two trees, &c. We could not,
poing. Vessels loaded with Des vaisseaux chargés without useless repetition, continue the linen.
analysis of the other examples, which has Some pots of basil, of Des pots de basilic, de been previously given. butter, beurre.
We will terminate this review by menA merchant of feathers. Un marchand de plume. tioning once more, that in cases similar to Merchants of straw, hay, Des marchands de paille, those already noticed, the mind must decide cider.
de foin, de cidre. A merchant of music. Un marchand de mu
the question, by giving to sentences their sique.
proper signification. Merchants of wine, but- Des marchands de vin,
(To be continued.) ter, fish, cod - fish, de beurre, de poisson, orange flower.
de morne, de fleur
UTILITY OF GAS TAR.-A discovery, which is
likely to be of great advantage to agriculture, has Female boarding-house. Une pension de femmes. recently been reported to a French agricultural A heap of medicinal Un tas d'herbes médi- society. A gardener, whose frames and hot-house herbs.
required painting, decided on making them To scratch with the Sebattreà coup d'ongles. black, as likely to attract the heat better, and nails.
from a principle of economy he made use of gas Vessels loaded with cod- Des vaisseaux chargés tar instead of black paint. The work was perfish,
formed during the winter, and on the approach A pot of flowers, of Un pot de fleurs, of spring the gardener was surprised to find that pinks.
all the spiders and insects which usually infested A merchant of pens. Un marchand de plumes. his hot-house had disappeared, and also that A merchant of cloths Un marchand de draps vine, which for two years preceding had so fallen
from Elbeuf, Lou- ďElbeuf, de Louviers, off that he had intended to replace it by another, viers, of white linen, de toile blanches, dé had acquired fresh force and vigour, and gave of coarse linen.
every sign of producing a large crop of grapes. A merchant of engray. Un marchand
He afterwards used the same substance to the ings. tampes.
posts and trellis-works, which supported the trees A merchant of rich Un marchand de vins, in the open air, and met with the same result, all
wines, salt butter, fins, de beurres salés, the caterpillars and other insects completely disherrings, eels, carps, de
harengs, d'an- appearing. It is said that similar experiments lobsters, flowers. guilles, de carpes, de have been made in some of the vineyards of the
homarde, de fleurs. Gironde with similar results.