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these, the waters of the tide steal by almost imperceptible degrees, covering them for a large extent, and leaving them bare on its recess. Upon thesc shores, as we have observed, the sea seldom beats with any great violence, as a large wave has not depth sufficient to float it onward; so that here are to be seen gentle surges only, making calmly toward land, and lessening as they approach. As the sea, in the former description, is generally seen to present prospects of tumult and uproar, here it more usually exhibits a scene of repose and tranquil beauty. Its waters, which, when surveyed from the precipice, afforded a muddy greenish hue, arising from their depth and position to the eye, when beheld from a shelving shore, are the colour of the sky, and seem rising to meet it. The deafening noise of the deep sea is here converted into gentle murmurs; and, instead of the water dashing against the face of the rock, it advances and recedes, still going forward, but with just force enough to push its weeds and shells by insensible approaches to the shore.
There are other shores, which have been either raised by art to oppose the inroads of the sea, or, from its gaining ground, are menaced by immediate destruction. The sea being thus seen to give and take away lands at pleasure, is, without question, one of the most extraordinary considerations in natural history. In some places it is seen to obtain the superiority by slow and certain approaches; or to burst in at once, and overwhelm all things in undistinguished destruction: in other places it departs from its shores, and, where its waters have been known to rage, it leaves extensive fields covered with verdure.
The formation of new lands, by the sea continually bringing its sediment to one place, and by the accumulation of its sands in another, is easily conceived. Many instances of this are recorded, which we have not room to recapitulate. One alone will suffice: the whole country of Holland seems to be a conquest from the sea, and to be rescued, in a manner, from its bosom.
The industry of man, however, in the formation of dikes, must here be mentioned; for the surface of the earth, in this country, is still below the level of the sea.
But as the sea has been known to recede from some lands, so it has, by fatal experience, been known to encroach upon others; and, probably, these depredations on one shore may account for its dereliction of another: for the current which rested upon some certain bank, having got an egress in some other place, no longer presses upon its former bed, but pours all its stream into the new entrance; so that every inundation of the sea may be attended with a correspondent dereliction of another shore.
However this be, we have numerous instances of the inundations of the sea, and of its burying whole provinces in its bosom. One of the most considerable of these, is that which happened in the reign of Henry I, which overflowed the estates of Earl Goodwin, in Kent, and formed that celebrated bank, called the Goodwin Sands.
There arç some shores on which the sea has made temporary depredations; where it has overflowed, and after remaining, perhaps, some ages, has again retired of its own accord, or been driven back by the industry of man. The country round the Isle of Ely, in the time of Bede, about ten centuries ago, was one of the most delightful spots in the kingdom. It was not only richly cultivated, and produced all the necessaries of life, but grapes also, that afforded excellent wine. The accounts of that time are copious in the description of verdnre and fertility; its rich pastures, ich pastures, covered wit
covered with flowers and herbage; its beautiful shades and wholesome air. But the sea, breaking in, overwhelmed the whole country, and totally destroyed one of the
most fertile valleys in the world. Its air, from being dry and healthful, from that time became very unwholesome; and the small part of the country, that, from being higher than the rest, eşcaped the deluge, was soon rendered uninhabitable, from its noxious vapours. This country continued thus under water for some centuries; till the sea, at last, by the same caprice which had prompted its invasion, began to abandon it, and has continued, for some ages, to relinquish its former conquests. Of inundations of the like kind, concerning which history has been silent, we have numberless testimonies of another nature, that prove it beyond the possibility of doubt: we allude to those numerous trees, that are found buried at considerable depths, in places which the sea, or rivers, have accidentally overflowed.
But the influence which the sea has upon its shores is nothing to that which it has upon that great body of earth which forms its bottom. It is at the bottom of the sea that the greatest wonders are performed, and the most rapid changes produced. It is there that the motions of the tides and currents have their whole force, and agitate the substances of which their bed is composed. But these are almost wholly hidden from human curiosity: the miracles of the deep are performed in secret; and we have but little information from its abysses, except what we receive by inspection at very shallow depths, or by the plummet, or from divers, who are known to descend from twenty to thirty fathoms.
The eye can reach but a very short way into the depth of the sea, and that only when its surface is glassy and serene. In many seas, it perceives nothing but a bright sandy plain at bottom, extending for several hundred miles, without an intervening object. But in others, particularly in the Red Sea, it is very different; the whole body of this extensive
bed of water is, literally speaking, a forest of submarine plants, and corals formed by insects for their habitation, sometimes branching out to a great extent. Here are seen the madrepores, the sponges, mosses, sea-mushrooms, and other marine productions, covering every part of the bottom. The bed of many parts of the sea, near America, presents a very different though a very beautiful appearance: this is covered with vegetables, which make it look as green as a meadow; and, beneath, are seen thousands of turtles, and other sea-animals, feeding thereon.
With the following noble reflections on the sea, by Lord Byron, we close this interesting subject.
There is a pleasure in the pathless woods,
To mingle with the Universe, and feel
Roll on, thou deep and dark blue ocean-roll!
He sinks into thy depths with bubbling groan,
His steps are not upon thy paths, thy fields
His petty hope in some near port or bay,
The armaments which thunderstrike the walls
They melt into thy yeast of waves, which mar
Thy shores are empires, changed in all save thee-
Time writes no wrinkle on thine azure brow-
Thon glorious mirror, where the Almighty's form
The monsters of the deep are made; each zone
In NOVEMBER 1820.
1.-ALL SAINTS. IN the early ages of Christianity the word saint was applied to all believers, as is evident in the use of it by Saint Paul and Saint Luke; but the term was afterwards restricted to such as excelled in Christian virtues. In the Romish church, holy per
Childe Harold, 8vo, Canto iv, p. 92