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angel throughout Scandinavia and the whole of Europe, except Portugal, to the Mediterranean, which it crosses to visit North Africa, Egypt, and Abyssinia for the winter season.

The haunts which it affects in this country are generally not far removed from human habitation, and it is not unusual to find the nest, containing five or six pale-blue eggs, upon a peach or plum-tree against a wall; upon a crossbeam of a summer-house ; or in a hole of a wall or tree, as opportunity may serve. The eggs are very similar to those of the Hedge Sparrow, but are invariably smaller and paler. It picks up most of its food, such as small beetles, spiders, and worms, on the ground; and its actions when thus engaged remind one more of the Robin than of the Wheatear, as Macgillivray thought. At other times it will sit upon an exposed branch, and dart forth into the air, like a Flycatcher, to secure a passing insect. Its song, though sprightly, is weak and seldom prolonged. It is generally poured forth from some bough or other " coign of vantage," but is occasionally uttered as the bird hovers on the wing, or flies from spray to spray.

Although a very shy bird, the Redstart occasionally takes up its quarters close to the house, and when once it has selected a site for its nest and hatched its young, it manifests such attachment for them as to allow a very near approach, and will even permit a visitor to stroke it as it sits upon the nest.

The beauty of its plumage, its sprightly and at times incessant song, and the good which it effects in ridding plants and fruit-trees of the green aphis, commend it to the notice and protection of all owners of gardens.

The Common Redstart has scarcely quitted our shores in autumn before its congener, the Black Redstart {Ruticilla tithys), arrives to pass the winter here, and occasionally even to linger on until the more familiar species returns again with the spring. But since it is properly regarded as a winter visitant to this country, any lengthened description of the species, and of its haunts and habits, would be out of place here. I shall therefore merely observe that it may be distinguished from the Common Redstart by the sooty-black colour of the breast and belly, which parts in the other are orange-brown, and that it generally arrives about the first week in November, and remains until the end of March or beginning of April.

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The origin of the specific name "tithys" seems to be somewhat doubtful, although several ornithologists have attempted an explanation. Hemprich and Ehrenberg (" Symbolae Physicae," fol. bb), and Von Heuglin (" Orn. NordOst Afrika's," i. p. 334) have referred it to rlrm, tdtor, with which, however, in the opinion of Professor Newton (" Ann. Mag. Nat. History," Ser. 4, x. p. 227), it can have nothing to do. Professor Newton himself, in the magazine just quoted, and in a footnote to his edition of Yarrell's "History of British Birds," i. p. 333, writes: "Sylvia tithys (by mistake) Scopoli, Annus I. Historico-naturalis, p. 157 (1769). This naturalist admittedly took his specific name from Linnaeus, who spelt the word 'titys1 as did Gesner ; but the best classical authorities, Stephanus, Porson, and Passow, consider 'titis' to be right. This originally meant a small chirping bird, and is possibly cognate with the first syllable of our ///mouse and ///lark." After the opinion expressed by such authorities, it may appear somewhat presumptuous on my part to offer a suggestion; but there is yet another explanation, which has apparently been overlooked. Might not the word "tithys" (more correctly "tithus") be derived from the Greek adjective Ti8<j?, (W, 6ov, which has the same signification as Ti9a<rof, tha: is, "reared up in the house, domesticated." Compare the domestic hens of Dioscorides, r&xi opwfltf. The term "domesticated" would be well applied to the Black Redstart, which is a very familiar bird, frequently perching on house-tops and garden walls, and building in holes and crannies in the neighbourhood of man's dwelling.

THE SEDGE WARBLER.

(Salicaria phragmitis.)
EAVING the woods, gardens, and planta-

4 tions, and proceeding to the river side, we meet with a very different class of birds—the river warblers. This is a very numerous family, and were we about to treat of all the known species, it might be advisable for simplicity's sake to group them into sub-families. As we are confining our attention, however, for the present, to those species only which have been met with in the British Islands, it will be less confusing if we dispense with this subdivision, and notice

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