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slopes in Easedale ; and lastly, the church, with its firs, forming the centre of the view. Next to the church came nine distinguishable hills, six of them with woody sides turned towards us, all of them oak copses with their bright red leaves and snow-powdered twigs; these hills—so variously situated in relation to each other, and to the view in general, so variously powdered, some only enough to give the herbage a rich brown tint, one intensely white and lighting up all the others—were yet so placed, as in the most unobtrusive manner to harmonize by contrast with a perfect naked, snowless, bleak summit in the far distance.'

Having spoken of the forms, surface, and colour of the mountains, let us descend into the vales. Though these have been represented under the general image of the spokes of a wheel, they are, for the most part, winding, the windings of many being abrupt and intricate.

And it may be observed that, in one circumstance, the general shape of them all has been determined by that primitive conformation through which so many became receptacles of lakes. For they were not formed, as are most of the celebrated Welsh valleys, by an approximation of the opposite mountains towards each other, leaving little more between than a channel for the passage of a hasty river ; but the bottom of these valleys is mostly a spacious and gently declining area, apparently level as the floor of a temple, or the surface of a lake, and broken in many cases by rocks and hills, which rise up' like islands from the plain. In such of the valleys as make many windings, these level areas open upon the traveller in succession, divided from each other sometimes by a mutual approximation of the hills, leaving only passage for a river; sometimes by correspondent windings, without such approximation ; and sometimes by a bold advance of one mountain towards that which is opposite it.

It may here be observed with propriety that the several rocks and hills, which have been described as rising up like islands from the level area of the vale, have regulated the choice of the inhabitants in the situation of their dwellings. Where none of these are found, and the inclination of the ground is not sufficiently rapid easily to carry off the waters (as in the higher part of Langdale, for instance), the houses are not sprinkled over the middle of the vales, but confined to their sides, being placed merely so far up the mountain as to be protected from the floods. But where these rocks and hills have been scattered over the plain of the vale (as in Grasmere, Dunnerdale, Eskdale, etc.), the beauty which they give to the scene is much heightened by a single cottage, or cluster of cottages, that will be almost always found under them, or upon their sides ; dryness and shelter having tempted the Dalesmen to fix their habitations there.



While at our pastoral banquet thus we sate,
I could not, ever and anon, forbear
To glance an upward look on two huge peaks,
That from some other vale peered into this.
'Those lusty twins,' exclaimed our host, “if here
It were your lot to dwell, would soon become
Your prized companions.—Many are the notes
Which in his tuneful course the wind draws forth
From rocks, woods, caverns, heaths, and clashing shores ;
And well those lofty brethren bear their part
In the wild concert-chiefly when the storm
Rides high ; then all the upper air they fill
With roaring sound, that ceases not to flow,
Like smoke, along the level of the blast,
In mighty current; theirs, too, is the song
Of stream and headlong flood that seldom fails ;
And, in the grim and breathless hour of noon,
Methinks that I have heard them echo back

The thunder's greeting. Nor have nature's laws
Left them ungifted with a power to yield
Music of finer tone; a harmony,
So do I call it, though it be the hand
Of silence, though there be no voice,--the clouds,
The mists, the shadows, light of golden suns,
Motions of moonlight, all come thither-touch,
And have an answer-thither come, and shape
A language not unwelcome to sick hearts
And idle spirits ;—there the sun himself,
At the calm close of summer's longest day,
Rests his substantial orb ;-- between those heights,
And on the top of either pinnacle,
More keenly than elsewhere in night's blue vault,
Sparkle the stars, as of their station proud.
Thoughts are not busier in the mind of man
Than the mute agents stirring there :-alone
Here do I sit and watch.'




I shall now speak of the lakes of this country. The form of the lake is most perfect when, like Derwentwater and some of the smaller lakes, it least resembles that of a river ;I mean, when being looked at from any given point where the whole may be seen at once, the width of it bears such proportion to the length, that, however the outline


be diversified by far-receding bays, it never assumes the shape of a river, and is contemplated with that placid and quiet feeling which belongs peculiarly to the lake-as a body of still water under the influence of no current; reflecting, therefore, the clouds, the light, and all the imagery of the sky and surrounding hills; expressing also and making visible the changes of the atmosphere, and motions of the lightest breeze, and subject to agitation only from the winds.

It must be noticed, as a favourable characteristic of the lakes of this country, that, though several of the largest, such as Windermere, Ullswater, Haweswater, do, when the whole length of them is commanded from an elevated point, lose somewhat of the peculiar form of the lake, and assume the resemblance of a magnificent river ; yet, as their shape is winding (particularly that of Ullswater and Haweswater), when the view of the whole is obstructed by those barriers which determine the windings, and the spectator is confined to one reach, the appropriate feeling is revived ; and one lake may thus in succession present to the eye the essential characteristics of many.

But, though the forms of the large lakes have this advantage, it is nevertheless favourable to the beauty of the country that the largest of them are comparatively small; and that the same vale generally furnishes a succession of lakes, instead of being filled

with one.

The vales in North Wales, as has been observed, are not formed for the reception of lakes ; those of Switzerland, Scotland, and this part of the North of England, are so formed; but, in Switzerland and Scotland, the proportion of diffused water is often too great, as at the Lake of Geneva, for instance, and in most of the Scotch lakes. No doubt it sounds magnificent and flatters the imagination, to hear at a distance of expanses of water so many leagues in length and miles in width ; and such ample room may be delightful to the fresh-water sailor, scudding with a lively breeze amid the rapidly shifting scenery. But who ever travelled along the banks of Loch Lomond, variegated as the lower part is by islands, without feeling that a speedier termination of the long vista of blank water would be acceptable ? and without wishing for an interposition of green meadows, trees, and cottages, and a sparkling stream to run by his side ? In fact, a notion of grandeur as connected with magnitude has seduced persons of taste into a general mistake upon this subject. It is much more desirable, for the purposes of pleasure, that lakes should be numerous, and small or middlesized, than large, not only for communication by walks and rides, but for variety, and for recurrence of similar appearances.

To illustrate this by one instance :-how pleasing is it to have a ready and frequent opportunity of watching, at the outlet of a lake, the stream pushing its way among the rocks in lively contrast with the stillness from which it has escaped ; and how amusing to compare its noisy and turbulent motions with the gentle playfulness of the breezes that may be starting up or wandering here and there over the faintly-rippled surface of the broad water! I may add, as a general remark, that, in lakes of great width, the shores cannot be distinctly seen at the same time, and therefore contribute little to mutual illustration and ornament; and if the opposite shores are out of sight of each other, like those of the American and Asiatic lakes, then unfortunately the traveller is reminded of a nobler object; he has the blankness of a sea-prospect without the grandeur and accompanying sense of power.

As the comparatively small size of the lakes in the North of England is favourable to the production of variegated landscape, their boundary-line also is for the most part gracefully or boldly indented. That uniformity which prevails in the primitive frame of the lower grounds among all chains or clusters of mountains where large bodies of still water are bedded, is broken by the secondary agents of Nature, ever at work to supply the deficiencies of the mould in which things were originally cast. Using the word deficiencies, I do not speak with regard to those stronger emotions which a region of mountains is peculiarly fitted to excite. The bases of those huge barriers may run for a long space in straight lines, and these parallel to each other; the opposite sides of a profound vale may ascend as exact counterparts, or

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