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yellow colour. Upon the internal surface of these rings there is spread a layer of a peculiar soft yellow substance, which has been compared to paste, bat by examination with a lens I found it to be organized like the common interstitial substance of the insect's body, except that it is of a closer texture, and a paler yellow colour, This substance does not entirely cover the inner surface of the rings, being more or less deficient along their edges, where it presents an irregular waving ontline. I have observed in the glow-worm that it is absorbed, and its place supplied by common interstitial substance, after the season for giving light is past.
The segments of the abdomen, be hind which this peculiar substance is situated, are thin and transparent, in order to expose the internal illumination.
The number of luminous rings varies in different species of lampyris, and, as it would seem, at different periods in the same individual.
Besides the luminous substance above described, I discovered in the common glow-worm, on the inner side of the last abdominal ring, two bodies, which to the naked eye ap
pear more minute than the head of the smallest pin. They are lodged in two slight depressions, formed in the shell of the ring, which is at these points particularly transparent. On examining these bodies under the microscope I found that they were sacs containing a soft yellow substance, of a more close and homogeneous texture than that which lines the inner subface of the rings. The membrane forming the sacs appeared to be of two layers, each of which is composed by a transparent silvery fibre, in the same manner as the internal membrane of the respiratory tubes of insects; except that in this case the fibre passes in a spiral instead of a circular direction. This membrane, although so delicately constructed, is so elastic as to preserve its form after the sac is ruptured and the contents discharged.
The light that proceeds from these sacs is less under the controul of the insect than that of the luminous substance spread on the rings: it is rarely ever entirely extinguished in the season that the glow-worm gives light, even during the day; and when all the other rings are dark, these sacs often shine brightly.
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MONTHLY RETROSPECT OF POLITICS.
"Why must we always impose on ourselves the necessity of passing through war to arrive at peace? the attainment of which is the end of all wars, and is a plain -proof that recourse is to be had to war only for want of a better expedient, Nevertheless, we have so effectually confounded this truth, that we seem to make peace only that we may again be able to make war."
HE late accounts from Spain and Portugal, the narrow escape of General Graham from the treachery and cowardice of his allies, and the retreat of Massena, have furnished topics during this month to revive the spirits of those, who, in their ardour for war, and in their zeal to oppose Bonaparte, overlook more remote consequences. The retreat of Massena has led the British again from their strong position near Lisbon, and from their shipping, whence they derived their supplies. To augur least despond ingly, we cannot reasonably expect that they will do more than maintain their position on the borders of Spain, till the disposer of the mighty military power of France arranges his plan, and sends a portion of his great engine of oppression and misery, (for such standing armies, and a military despotism may be justly so considered,) to attempt to regain complete possession of the peninsula; an attempt in which, it must be confessed, he has
been heretofore repeatedly foiled. But the British nation has lost an immensity of blood and treasure in their scheme to support the inhabitants of those countries, who in general show no attachment to them, as allies and defenders, and are very far from acting with vigour in a cause, which they feel to be their Own. The retention of some positions in Spain and Portugal cannot be of much consequence in a military point of view, unless the British have the mass of the population on their side. The inhabitants are most probably indifferent to either invading army, and are at a loss to distinguish between enemies and supposed friends. Both armies have in their respective retreats desolated the unhappy countries. The papers are now filled with the most distressing accounts of plunder and French cruelty. Probably many of these accounts are true; but let us recollect that these same prints a few months ago, glossed over the conduct of the British army in their retreat on Lisbon, and complacently told us that the destruction of the country was necessary to distress the enemy, and prevent his procuring supplies. The strictly impartial moralist condemus alike the excesses on every side. and sighs over the miserics ever inflicted on the inhabitants of an in
vaded country both by the victorious and vanquished armies respectively in their turns.
The present highly exaggerated victories do not seem likely to have much effect on the termination of the present interminable quarrel, of which we can see no probability of any adjustment, for exasperation and the most galling provocations of petty abuse and illiberal policy are daily rendering reconciliation and a return of peace almost entirely impossible. In the mean time, the expenses of this mighty contest, and especially of the struggle on the continent are adding to the national debt, and increasing the difficulties in the department of finance, which
some consider as one of the most vulnerable parts of the British empire, We cannot justly lay claim to the character of a thinking nation, although in the vanity and arrogance of self-complacency, we often times venture to put in an unsupported claim. The majority of the nation are easily duped, and the prevailing error of the present times is a Susceptibility of cullibility on such subjects as gratify their prejudices and render them pleased with the political quackery, which has, already produced so much mischief during the last fifty years. it is good to look back, and learn lessons of future caution from instances of former disappointed hopes. Some years ago the Duke of Brunswick, and some non-military closet politis cians, even one man, now high in office, talked confidently of leading an army immediately to Paris; and a temporary reverse of affairs in France in 1799 led to the most extravagant hopes of a complete triumph over a nation pronounced to be in the gulph of bankruptcy. These expectations were not realized. It is encountering the certainty of being unpopular to oppose the cur
rent of general prejudices, and to recommend caution in the moments of intemperate zeal, and highly rais ed hopes, but they who really love their country, and are desirous to promote her dearest interests will not be dismayed, but will venture to recommend an abatement of excitement, and to point out the dan gers of continuing in a system of self-delusion, which has already produced such ruinous consequences.
George Canning took an oppor tunity after the battle of Barrosa, of proclaiming to the house of commons, the wisdom with which he and his quondain colleagues had planned the defence of the peninsula, and the ability with which it had been conducted. After so long a period of disaster, he might think himself justified in triumphing on a supposed successful reverse. It is however too soon to rejoice. The termination of the business ought to be waited for, before high gratula tions can be given.
The attack on the island of Anholt by the Danes, and the vigorous defence made by Captain Maurice
It is probable that Napoleon is restrained by the fear of some explosion in Russia, Holland, or even in Germany, which only waits for his setting out, himself, for Spain or Portugal. If, as the Moniteur owns, 800,000 Frenchmen be employed in the Peninsula, the reason surely is sufficient for England wishing to fix the Campus Martius in these countries, rather than at home. If she can discipline the men fit for arms in Portugal and Spain, by experienced British officers, feeding them well, cloathing them handsomely, and paying them regularly, they will quickly forget the miseries of old men, women, and children, and, for the time, prove faithful and efficient allies, and if the English army has no other adIn fact, the campaign is only beginning, vantage, it will certainly profit by the lessons in tactics it will receive before its
and the British afford another proof of the destructive energies of war, and the misapplication of the powers of man to mutual annoyance. Every event connected with Denmark renews the regret at the unjust and unwise policy, which forced that country into hostility with us, and into an unnatural alliance with France. The revolution in Spanish America appears from the best, and least partial accounts to be making progress. Miranda is now at Caracca, and is hailed as their leader. His former enlightened views give some hopes of future good, if he do not act like others, who, when in the - possession of power have basely turned apostates to the cause of liberty. The friends to the amelioration of man, have grounds to hope, for good results to the cause of liberty in Spanish America, if recent events in France did not cause them almost entirely to despond, and to distrust the fairest appearances.
As a prominent occurrence in our domestic relations, and as aii augury of hope in future, we may notice the answer of the Prince Regent, to an application for a grant to General Charles Craufurd to be governor of the Military College at Marlow. "I never can, or will consent to bestow any place or appointment, meant to be an asylum or reward for the toils and services of our gallant soldiers and seamen on any person on account of parliamentary 'connexion, or in return for parliamentary votes. This is my fixed determination: and I trust I shall never again be solicited in the same way." The minister bowed and retired. General Craufurd is step-father to the Duke of New. castle, who is lately come of age, and who has the command of several votes in the house of commons. After some attempts on the part of the ministerial news papers to in
validate the truth of the story, the authenticity of it appears to be ful ly confirmed. The Duke of Newcastle, it is said, suffered the affair to leak out, and thus the public are put in possession of an impor tant fact, of great importance, as indicative of future honourable in tentions. General Craufurd previ ously had a pension of 12007. ♣ year for his own life, and that of the Dutchess his wife. He had a Regiment of Dragoon Guards, and was Lieutenant Governor of Tynes mouth. These are pretty ample pickings to be enjoyed out of the taxes of an impoverished, and over. burthened state. Surely there is need of a radical reform, and an entire change of system.
The parliamentary proceedings during this month have not been of much importance, if we except the triumph of humanity and sound policy in Sir Samuel Romilly's bills to abridge in certain cases the pu nishment of death, being permitted to pass through the house of commons, and the negative put on Lord Folkstone's motion, in relation to the increased number of informations ex officio by the Attorney Ge neral in case of libels, Sir Vicary pleaded his own cause, and a majority, rather than force of argument, sheltered him from any inquiry, which he strongly opposed. It is worthy of remark that unless when some party question affecting the interests of the Outs is agitated, the candidates for place seldom attend, and the house is left so thin, as in some cases not to have a sufficient number to proceed to business. The party of the people, a small band, the enlightened Sir Samuel Romilly, the intrepid Sir Francis Burdett, and the honest Samuel Whitbread, with a few others, are vigilantly at their posts; while some of the leading oppositionists mani