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THE LARCH.-No. I.
would appear as useless blanks on the
face of creation. (Pinus Larix.)
In this numerous and universally diffused family, the larch holds no mean station. It is inferior only to the pine in the utility of its products, or the extent of country which it inhabits; and in many repects is greatly its superior. “ It bears,” says Sang," the ascendancy over the Scotch pine in the following important circumstances : it brings double the price, at least, per measurable foot ; it will arrive at a useful timber size in one-half or a third part of the time in general which the fir requires ; and, above all, the timber of the larch at thirty or forty years old, when placed in soil and climate adapted to the production of perfect timber, is in every respect superior to that of the fir at one
hundred years old.” EXPLANATION OF CUT.-a, male catkin. c, calyx The larch is the only member of this and stamina. d, female catkin, or immature cone. e, embryo, magnified. 5, single scale of the cone, family which sheds its leaves annually. with its winged seeds. 9, cone.
Hence it may be considered as the con
necting link between evergreen and deNATURAL ORDER. Abietinæ. LINNEAN ARRANGEMENT. Monæcia, Monadel- ciduous trees: like the latter, it loses its phia.
foliage in autumn, and renews it in the Barren flowers in an ovate, sessile, deciduous spring, while its woody cones, resinous catkin. Calyx cup-shaped, sessile, containing the secretions, erect and spiry trunk, and receptacle to which the stamens are attached ; anthers yellow. Fertile flowers in an elongated, cy- pendulous horizontal frond-like lindrical, sessile catkin; scale acute, coloured, a branches, identify it with the former. mid-rib rising from between the two embryos at its
It differs from the Scotch fir in the arCones oblong-ovate, about one inch in length, brown when ripe. Scales persistent, round- rangement of its leaves, which, instead ish, slightly waved at the margin. A tall pyra- of being inserted spirally in pairs upon midal tree, deciduous, blossoming in March or April.
the branches, are disposed in groups
round a central bud ; the cones, too, of "The larch has hung all its tassels forth."
the larch are erect, those of the fir
drooping To include the larch, which is neither There are but two species of the larch indigenous to our island, nor long na- -the one indigenous to Europe, the other turalized among us, in a series of papers to America: of the former there are on the trees of England, may, to one several varieties, though the difference uninformed on the subject, at first appear between them is very trifling. It is to be erroneous. Yet among the whole found only in the south of Europe, on range of our sylva, it would be difficult the Alps, the Apennines, the Carpato specify any tree in the present day thian mountains, and those in the south so extensively cultivated in our land, or of Russia. The altitude at which it will one which yields a more abundant and grow, and even produce valuable timber, valuable supply of useful timber. Like is far beyond that of any other tree culthe Scotch fir, of which we have already tivated among us. On this point the spoken, the larch is classed among the statements of the duke of Athol, the natural order Abietine, a family equally most extensive and experienced of Bridistinguished by the peculiar and yet tish larch growers, is very strong. “One similar appearance of its members; the of the greatest advantages of planting strength, durability, and general utility larch, is derived from its peculiar proof the timber they afford; the resinous perty of thriving in very elevated situsecretions they exude; the extensive and ations. The Scotch pine thrives at an wide-spread regions which they cover ; elevation below nine hundred feet, but and their remarkable adaptation to those the larch extends to sixteen hundred exposed and elevated situations which, feet above the sea, and it
may ascend but for these valuable timber trees, I higher. This is an important fact in a
To the vege
national point of view; much of the Matthew, who has given much attention mountain land of Great Britain, which to the subject, observes, that sound rock is at present worthless, may grow timber or gravel, even though nearly bare of to supply her navy and merchant ship- vegetable mould, and some of the stones ping, without at all interfering with the of enormous size, are favourable to the land which produces her cereal crops, or growth of the larch, as well as rough even her fine pasture land.” From the ground, as chasms, or ravines, and steep experience of forty-three years, he states and rugged hills. In such situations his decided opinion, that at an height of the loose soil allows the roots free pasfrom twelve hundred to sixteen hundred sage, and the moisture they imbibe from feet, an acre in seventy years will grow rain or the mountain streamlets percofour hundred trees, yielding an average lates through them without stagnating ; of at least one load of timber each. the dryness of the surface not producing
The average height to which the larch cold by evaporation, sooner heats in attains is from eighty to one hundred spring, while the elevated and exposed feet, though it frequently exceeds one situation refreshes and nourishes - the hundred feet. The trunk is straight and plant during the heat of summer. A tapering, and its diameter small in pro- clear and dry atmosphere is also essenportion to its length. The branches are tially necessary to the prosperity of the long, and spread at first horizontally, larch. It is a well established fact in though they afterwards droop, so that vegetable physiology, that the leaves of the tree acquires a conical shape. The every plant perform the very important leaves, which are short and linear, spread office of elaborating and rendering fit from the sheath which incloses them, for nutrition the sap absorbed at the roots, and are sometimes recurved at the tip : by exposing it to the influence of light they are of a very light green, and grow and air, and exhaling through the inin clustered tufts round a central bud. numerable, though invisible, stomata, or The catkins appear at the same time with pores, with which they are endowed, the leaves; those containing the stamens those noxious or useless particles which are globular, and vary in colour, being may have been imbibed. white, yellow, pink, red, or dark, or table creation the leaves discharge the light yellow, in the different species. same necessary office as the lungs to the The red or pink flowered larch is that animal creation, which receive the blood most commonly planted. The cones also which has circulated through the human vary in colour, from white to red, while system, purify it from any impurities it young; when full grown they acquire may have contracted, and restore it to a brownish tinge, and are about one inch the heart, thence again to perform its in length. The scales are roundish, and vital functions. The leaves of the larch rather notched at the margin.
are remarkably fine and minute, and Although the larch will grow in almost therefore present but little surface for any soil and situation, the value and du- the action of the solar ray, and have rability of its timber entirely depends on comparatively few of the stomata ; hence, its being planted in coarse gravelly soil, if the tree is planted where the moisture and in a dry and clear atmosphere, not of the atmosphere would even diminish too closely together. On rich ground, or clog this evaporation, or where the and in sheltered situations, though it fertility of the soil supplies nourishment grows rapidly, and its external appear- faster, or in a larger quantity, than the ance is no way affected, it is attacked and leaves can digest, it must suffer. Prosoon destroyed by the rot. This disease fessor de Candolle, therefore, observes : commences at the root, and spreads “Larches generally thrive on the declirapidly upwards through the centre of vities of mountains, seldom on flat the tree, enlarging by degrees, till the places ; because on declivities there is interior of the trunk becomes tough and always a little dampness in the earth, spongy, and ultimately hollow within, descending from the surface above; and like a pump. A peat, clay, sandy, or at the same time, the trees, on account of wet soil has generally been found to pro- the inequality of their bases, have more duce the rot; yet, even in such situations, space at their tops, and are better exthough the timber produced is utterly posed to the light; whereas flat places unfit for naval use, yet if cut down just are often too dry, and the trees being all as the rot is beginning to appear, it will. of the same height, overshadow each be useful for many minor purposes. I other. Declivities, and, in general, ele
TANJORE IN 1806.
vated countries, suit larches best, because and the centre of his dominion in the the action of the light is more intense present age. The number of his worthere than in low countries." An in- shippers is computed by hundreds of land situation, too, all writers on the thousands. Four thousand pilgrims ensubject agree in recommending. The tered the gates with me on the day presea, as the professor observes, produces vious to the grand festival of the Rutt dampness in the air from the moisture it Jattra, at Juggernaut. I first saw huexhales, while the saline particles de- man victims devote themselves to death, posited on every object within its sphere, by falling under the wheels of the movwould clog the stomata, and retard ing tower in which the idol is placed. evaporation. The duke of Athol, whose There I saw the place of sculls, called experience was his only guide, has pub- Golgotha, where the dogs and vullished the results of his forty years' ob- tures are ever seen, expecting their daily servations, and these completely corro- corpse.
There I beheld the obscene borate the theory here alluded to. worship of Moloch in open day, while a
great multitude, like that in the Revelation, uttered their voices, not in hosan
nas, but in yells of applause at the The reader will be interested by the view of the horrid shape, and at the acfollowing letter from Dr. Buchanan to
tions of the high priest of infamy, who the Rev. John Newton, written from is mounted with it on the throne. There Tanjore. Most of the particulars were is nothing harmonious in the praise of printed by Dr. Buchanan in his “ Christ- Moloch's worshippers ; but rather a hissjan Researches in Asia," but they are ing approbation. Exhausted and dis
gusted with the daily horror of the scene, trated form.
I at length hastened away from the place
with some trepidation. Three days afterTanjore, Ist Sept. 1806.
wards, when I was on the banks of the MY DEAR SIR-It is seldom that any Chilka Lake, I beheld the towers of thing occurs in India worthy of being Juggernaut afar off: while I viewed communicated to you, but the subject of them, its abominations came to my rea letter from this place will, I doubt not, membrance, and I cursed it in the name be interesting.
of the church of God. How different is It is now about four months since I that valley of Hinnom, from the scene left Bengal, having purposed to travel which now presents itself to me here from Calcutta to Cape Comerin by land. among the Christian churches of TanI had conceived the design of this jour- jore! Here there is becoming dress, ney some years ago : being desirous of humane affections, and rational converse. obtaining a more distinct knowledge of Here the feeble-minded Hindoo exhibits the present state of the Hindoos and Mo- the Christian virtues in a vigour which hammedans in various parts of India ; greatly surprised me. Here Christ is also of the Protestant and Romish mis- glorified. And this is the scene which sions in the Deccan ; of the ancient now prompts me to write to you. Syrian Christians in Travancore ; and of But I ought first to inform you, that I the Jews at Cochin. I have now nearly have visited other places where the gosaccomplished my tour, and though some pel is preached to the Hindoos. principal objects remain to be explored, I had intended to have been at Vellore I have already obtained such valuable on the 8th of July, which was two days information on many important subjects, before the massacre; but the providence as amply compensates for the labour and of God retarded my steps. I was visited peril of so long a journey.
by a fever, which confined me for some When in the province of Orissa, I time in a caravansera. visited the celebrated Hindoo temple of
Lord Bentinck, the governor of MaJuggernaut. One of the students of the dras, desired I would suggest what college of Fort William has now the might occur me in my progress superintendence of the pagoda, and is the through the Deccan, as most likely to collector of the tax on pilgrims. I passed ameliorate the state of the newly-conabout ten days in making observations on verted Christians. In some places they it. Juggernaut appears to me to be the have suffered persecution. This persecuchief seat of Moloch in the whole earth, tion has, however, been thus far useful
that it shows the serious change of and seated me on his right. After a mind in the Hindoo who can bear it: short conversation, he led me up stairs for it is often alleged in India, that the to a magnificent saloon, fitted up in the Hindoo can never be so much attached English and Indian taste, and embelto Christ as the Brahmin is to his idol. lished with the portraits of Savajee, his
When I was at Tranquebar, I visited great ancestor, and the other kings of the church built by the pious Ziegenbalg. Tanjore. Immediately on entering, he His body lies on one side of the altar, led me up to the portrait of the late Mr. and that of Grundler on the other. Swartz. ' Finding that I liked music, Above are the epitaphs of both, written he entertained me with the vina, and in Latin, and engraved on plates of brass. the harp; and while the music played, The church was consecrated in 1718, he discoursed of that good man, and and Ziegenbalg and Grundler both died of his present happiness in a heavenly within two years after; I saw also the state. dwelling house of Ziegenbalg, which is I then addressed the rajah in the preyet in the state he left it. In the lower sence of the resident, and thanked him, apartment are yet kept the registers of in the name of the Christians in Europe, the church. In them I found the name and in Bengal, for his kindness to the of the first heathen baptized by Ziegen- | late Mr. Swartz, and to his successors; balg, and recorded by himself in 1707. and particularly for his recent acts of beI also saw old men whose fathers had nevolence to the Christians residing withseen Ziegenbalg. I first heard in Zieg- in the province of Tanjore. He has enbaig's church, and from the pulpit erected a chuttrum, or college for Hinwhere he preached, the gospel published doos, Mussulmans, and Christians. Proto the Hindoos in their own tongue. On vision is made for the instruction of fifty that occasion they sung the 100th Psalm Christian children. to Luther's tune. To me it was an af- Having heard of the fame of the anfecting scene. Tranquebar, however, is cient Shanscrit and Mahratta library of not what it was. It is only the classic the kings of Tanjore, I requested his exground of the gospel. European infidel. cellency would present a catalogue of its ity has eaten out the truth like a canker. volumes to the college of Fort William. A remnant indeed is left; but the glory The Brahmins had formerly remonhas departed to Tanjore.
strated against this being done ; but the When I entered the province of Tan- rajah was now pleased to order a copy to jore, the Christians came out of the vil- be made out, and I have it already in my lages to meet me; and here, first, I possession. It is voluminous, written in heard the name of Swartz pronounced the Mahratta character; for that is the by a Hindoo. When I arrived at the language of the Tanjore court. capital, I waited on Mr. Kolhoff, the When I was about to take leave, the successor of Mr. Swartz. Here, also, I rajah, to my great surprise, presented to found two other missionaries, Rev. Dr. me a miniature of himself, elegantly set, John, and Mr. Horst, who were on a about six inches in length; and also four visit to Mr. Kollhoff. They told me pieces of gold cloth. In the evening he that the company's resident, Captain sent his band of music, of twelve men, Blackburne, had apartments ready for namely, six performers on the vina, and my reception, and that he had despatched six singers, to the house of the resident, a letter to me (which missed me) some where I dined. They sung and played days before, informing me, that the ra- “God save the king,” with variations, jah of Tranjore was desirous of seeing me. in just measure, applying the Mahratta I asked the missionaries how the rajah words to the Maha rajah, their own came to hear of me. They said, that most excellent prince. the resident had got a copy
Me- Next day I sat some hours with the moir, and of Mitchell's Essay.
missionaries, consulting on the general On the same day I paid my respects to state of the mission. They want help. the resident, who informed me, that the Their vineyard is increased, and their rajah had appointed next day at twelve labourers are decreased. They have to receive me. On our entrance (the hitherto had no supply from Germany in resident accompanied me to the palace) room of Swartz, Joenicke, and Gericke, the rajah arose from his sofa, and ad- and have no prospect of a supply. It vancing some steps, took me by the hand, appears to me that the glory has de
* A new
parted from Germany, and that God has rally prompted by the minister himself. given it to England.
Thus, suppose he is saying, “My dear Last Sunday and Monday were great brethren, it is true you are now
a despised days with the Christians at Tanjore. It people, being cast out by the Brahmins. being rumoured that a friend of the late But think not that your state is peculiar. Rev. Mr. Swartz had arrived, the peo- For the Pharisee, and the worldly man, ple assembled from all quarters on Sun- is the Brahmin of high and low caste in day morning. Three
were Europe. All true Christians must lose preached in three different languages. their caste in this world. Some of you At eight o'clock we proceeded to the are now following your Lord in the rechurch built by Mr. Swartz, within the generation, under circumstances of pefort. It is larger than your church of culiar suffering; but let every such one St. Mary Woolnoth. From Mr. Swartz's be of good cheer, and say, 'I have lost pulpit I preached in English from Mark my caste, and my inheritance among men; xiii. 10, “ And the gospel must first be but in heaven I shall obtain a new name, published among all nations.” The re- and a better inheritance, through Jesus sident, and other gentlemen, civil and Christ our Lord.'” The minister then military, at the place, attended ; and adds, “My beloved children, what shall also the missionaries, catechists, and Eng- you obtain in heaven?” They imme
diately answer, in one voice, After this service was over, the native name, and a better inheritance, through congregation assembled in the same Jesus Christ our Lord.” It is impossichurch, and filled the aisles and porches. ble for a stranger not to be affected at The service commenced with some forms this scene. Children of tender years inof prayer read by an inferior minister, in quire of each other, and attempt the rewhich all the congregation joined with sponse. loud fervour. A chapter of the Bible And this custom is deduced from was then read, and a hymn of Luther's Ziegenbalg, who proved its use from long sung. Some voices in tenor and bass experience. gave much harmony to the psalmody, as After the Tamul service was ended, I the treble was distinguished by the pre- retired, with the missionaries, into the dominant voices of the women and boys. vestry, or Swartz's library. Here I was After a short extempore prayer, during introduced to the elders and catechists of which the whole assembly knelt on the the church. Among others came Satfloor, the Rev. Dr. John delivered an tianaden, the celebrated preacher, who eloquent and animated sermon, in the is yet found faithful. He is now stricken Tamul tongue, from these words, “And in years, and his black locks have grown Jesus stood and cried,” etc. As Mr. grey. Whitefield, on his first coming to Scot- As I returned from the church, I saw land, was surprised at the rustling of the the Christian fainilies returning in crowds leaves of the Bibles, which took place to the country, and the mothers asking immediately on his pronouncing his text, the boys to read passages from their so I was here surprised at a noise of a ollas. different kind, namely, that of the iron At four o'clock in the afternoon, we pen engraving the palmyra leaf : many went to the little chapel in the mission persons had their ollas (leaves) in their garden out of the fort, built also by Mr. hands, writing off the sermon in Tamul Swartz, and in which his body now lies. short hand. Mr. Kolhoff assured me, This was a solemn service. Mr. Horst that some of them are so expert in this, preached in the Portuguese language, that they do not lose one word of the from these words, “Ye, who sometime preacher. And the sermon of the morn- were afar off," etc. ing is regularly read in the evening to I sat on a granite stone which covered the schools by the catechist from his Swartz’s grave. The epitaph is in Engpalmyra leaf.
lish verse, and written by the present Another custom obtains, which I may prince, who has signed his name to it, mention. In the midst of the discourse, Serfojee, rajah.” The organ here acthe preacher puts a question to his con- companied the voice of the multitude, gregation, who respond without hesita- and the preacher addressed the people in tion in one voice. The object is to keep an animated discourse of pure doctrine. attention awake, and the answer is gene- In the evening, Mr. Kolhoff presided