صور الصفحة
PDF
النشر الإلكتروني

animal that can live either in the water or on land?

Yes, that is quite right. Water rats are of this kind, and otters, and many other animals. Water rats shew great ingenuity in the construction of their nests, which have two openings, one above the water, and the other beneath. The same.

MICE.

The care that mice take of their young is very surprising. A gardener, who was removing a hot bed, in order to put in fresh manure, was surprised to see a little animal leap out of the side with great agility. He thought it was some unknown creature from its very curious appearance; but, on catching it, (which he did with difficulty,) he found it to be a mouse, with four little ones clinging to her, which she was endeavouring

to preserve, by making her immediate escape.- The

same.

BIOGRAPHY.

COLUMBUS.

CHRSITOPHER Columbus was the first man in our quarter of the world, who discovered that there was such a place as America. · He was born in Italy about the year 1447. When he was quite a boy, he thought he should like to be a sailor, and sail all round the world.

When Columbus became a man, and had sailed over many parts of the world, he began to think that there must be some other great country besides those that were already known.

Europe, Asia, and Africa were then only known; and, as Columbus knew that the world was ruuud like an orange, he thought it very unlikely that half of it should have so much land on it, and the other half nothing but water; for the land side he thought would be too heavy for a proper balance. Besides this, he heard that à man who had sailed a very great way. to the west had taken up a piece of timber curiously carved; and, as the

wind was then blowing from the west, he concluded that this must have come from some country to the westward.

Columbus went to live in Portugal, and he begged the king of that country to assist him in his attempts to dis. cover the new continent; but, as the king of Portugal refused this, he then applied to the king and queen of Spain; and, after several years delay, he had three ships granted him, and was allowed to try what he could do. These ships were not much larger than good sized boats, and he had only, ninety men altogether.

On the 3rd of August, 1492, Columbus set sail a little before sun-rise. Before they had gone far, they found that the ships were in very bad repair, and the men began to grumble at being segt on such an expedition in such crazy ships. They steered due westward. They encountered many difficulties, and had at different times dreadful doubts and fears, but they continued their course. At length they saw some sea-weeds, which gave

them hopes that land was not very far distant. Then they saw several birds, and they were cheered still more. After a time, however, these things disappeared, and the men began to despair; and they begged that Columbus would take them back again to their own country, for they were quite tired of seeing only sea and no land. The officers joined with the sailors, and there was nothing but tumult and complaints. At length Columbus told them, that if they would be patient for three days, if they did not see land in that time, he would go back with them to Spain.

Soon after this, they saw more flocks of birds, and they found a piece of cane newly cut, and likewise a piece of timber curiously carved, and the branch of a tree with red berries upon it. Columbus now felt sure that land was near. About midnight he saw a light; there was soon a joyful shout from one of the ships of “ land, land!" In the morning an island was seen,

the fields of which were green; and it was well stored with wood, and watered

many rivulets. When they came near the coast, they saw a number

people, who showed the greatest

with

marks of wonder and delight. The poor people were greatly surprised at the fine appearance of the Spaniards.; and, when they heard their guns fired, they thought the noise was thunder. After this discovery, Columbus returned to Spain, and was received by the king and queen with every mark of honour and distinction. Then a fleet was fitted out to go in search of more countries. lu this second voyage, other islands were found; and, in a third voyage, the great continent of America was discovered. This was on the 1st day of August, 1498.

Columbus had many enemies, who spoke against him to the king of Spain, and he was at one time brought back to Spain in chains. But he proved his innocence, and was sent back to seek for more lands; and, after many perils by land and by water, he came back again to Spain, and was much honoured there, till he died, three or four, years after his return.

Love not sleep, lest thou come to poverty. Drowsiness shall clothe a man with rags. Prov. xx. 13.

« السابقةمتابعة »