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tinual change of place without use or purpose, testify their joy, and the exultation which they feel in their lately discovered faculties. A bee among the flowers, in spring, is one of the cheerfullest objects that can be looked upon.
Its life appears to be all enjoyment; so busy, so pleased it seems: yet it is only a specimen of insect life, with which, because the animal is half domesticated, we are better acquainted than with that of others. The whole winged insect tribe, it is probable, are equally intent upon their proper employments, and under every variety of constitution, gratified, and perhaps equally, by the offices which the Author of their nature has assigned to them.
Nor are the waters less peopled with active and happy inhabitants. The 'margins of rivers, of lakes and of the sea itself produce shoals of the fry of fish. These are so happy that they know not what to do with themselves. Their attitudes, their vivacity, their wanton frolics, their leaps out of the water shew their excess of spirits and are simply the effects of that excess.
What scene can present a finer picture of calm enjoyment than large herds of cattle when grazing and reposing in the meadows; intermingled with flocks of sheep accompanied by their frisking young. If, moreover, we reflect that each individual of the numerous species which cover the earth or fill the air and the waters, is in a state of positive enjoyment, what a scene of gratification and pleasure is brought before our view when we consider the whole collectively.
The youug of all animals appear to me to receive pleasure, simply from the exercise of their limbs and bodily faculties. A child is delighted with speaking without having any thing to say, and with walking without knowing where to go. And, prior to both these, I am disposed to believe the waking hours of infancy are agreeably taken up with the exercise of vision, or, perhaps, more properly speaking with learning to see.
But it is not for youth alone that the great parent of creation hath provided. Happiness is found in the arm chair of dozing age, as well as in the sprightliness of the dance, and the animation of the chace. To novelty, to acuteness of sensation, to hope, to ardour of pursuit, succeeds, what is, in no considerable degree, and equivalent for them all, “perception of ease.
This “perception" often times renders old age a condition of great comfort; especially when riding at its anchor, after a busy and tempestuous lile. The appearance of satisfaction, with which most animals, as their activity subsides, seek and enjoy rest, affords reason to believe, that this source of gratification is appointed to advanced life, under all, or most, of its varied forms. In the species with which we are best acquainted, namely our own, I am far, even as an observer of human life, from thinking, that youth is its happiest season, much less the only happy onę; as a christian, I am willing to believe that there is a great deal of truth, in the following representation given by a very pious writer as well as excellent man.
“ To the intelligent and virtuous, old age presents a scene of tranquil enjoyments, of obedient appetites, of well regulated affections, of maturity in knowledge, and of calm preparation for immortality. In this serene and dignified state, placed, as it were, on the confines of two worlds, the mind of a good man, reviews what is past with the complacency of an approving conscience, and looks forward with humble confidence in the mercy of God and with devout aspirations, towards his eternal and ever increasing Favor.
What is seen in different stages of the same life is still more exemplified in the lives of different animals. Animal enjoyments are infinitely diversified. The modes of life, to which the organization of different animals respectively determines them, are not only of various, but of opposite kinds. Yet each is happy in its own. For instance, animals of prey live much alone; those of milder constitution in so
ciety. Yet the herring which lives in shoals and the sheep which lives in flocks, are not more happy in a crowd, or more contented amongst their companions than is the pike or the lion, with the deep solitudes of the pool or the forest.
sheds into thy crystal cup;
EXTRACT FROM THE TASK.
BOOK III.-COWPER. I was a stricken deer, that left the herd Long since. With many an arrow deep infixed My panting side was charged, when I withdrew, To seek a tranquil death in distant shades. There was I found by one, who had himself Been hurt by the archers. In his side he bore, And in his hands and feet, the cruel scars. With gentle force soliciting the darts, He drew them forth, and healed, and bade me live. Since then, with few associates, in remote And silent woods I wander, far from those
My former partners of the peopled scene;
Dream after dream ensues;
Rotation, from what fountain flowed their light.
When I see such games
'Twere well, says one sage erudite profound, Terribly arch'd and aqueline his nose, And overbụilt with most impending brows, "Twere well, could you permit the world to live As the world pleases: what's the world to you? Much. I was born of woman, and drew milk As sweet as charity from human breasts. I think, articulate, I laugh and weep, And exercise all functions of a man. How then should I and any man that lives