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that

every additional one only creates a keener desire for its successor,

“ As if increase of appetite had grown
By what it fed on,"

until the stomach signifies its incapacity to receive a farther supply of the luscious and delectable food.

Man is naturally a self-opiniated contrary animal, and feels a natural inclination to disagree with his species on all earthly questions; but still he divides into parties and subdivides into factions, and it is possible to find half a dozen people who have the saine views in politics, religion, and literature; but perhaps no two were ever formed since the creation with exactly the same tenets respecting the stomach. They may hold on together for some time, and confess that they both like boiled salmon or roast ducks; but let them speak upon the subject of eating for a quarter of an hour, and a hundred minute but important differences of taste discover themselves. Indeed, two men alike in this respect would be a much greater rarity than the two Dromios. There are few points on which there is a more unanimous opinion entertained than oysters. All agree as to their virtues in the first instance; but whether they are best raw, or stewed, or fried, or broiled, or pickled, is the subject of endless cavillings, and interminable hatangues. The longest dispute

I ever listened to was whether it was best to devour these creatures with black pepper or red; and such was the earnestness of the disputants that the man employed in opening them, making a mistake, kept helping the red pepper advocate with black and the black pepper zealot with red; and to the infinite amusement of the lookers on, neither found out the difference until they were told, when both instantly declared they thought the oysters had a very peculiar taste ! just as newspapers or politicians will now-a-days commence a fiery dispute concerning democratic and federal parties, or the powers of the general and state governments, until they unconsciously change sides in the course of the argument, without being anything the wiser; and just so trivial and undistinguishable are half the disputes into which we poor brainless bipeds plunge with such uncontrollable fury, to the infinite amusement of all calm and dispassionate spectators. But it will not do to go on grounding general reflections on an oyster. It was made for better things than to be a theme from which to extract a questionable moral. I would if I could be eloquent in thy praise, thou best and gravest* of fish—thou most nutritious and digestible of moluscous substances—thou stanchest friend and steadiest supporter of Afric's trampled sons, for whom thou daily effectest more than Wilberforce can ever hope to compass-much do I regret that the insatiable appetites of the citizens are robbing their bay of its greatest boast; like the boy who killed the goose for the golden eggs, they are not content with the yearly produce of thy fruitful beds, but they leave them oysterless, seize on both interest and principal, and expect a miracle to provide for the future. It is easy to foresee the ruinous consequences of such atrocious conduct-but it is not in common prose that thy merits and sufferings should be commemorated. I will take my harp and sweep its softest strings.

* Wherein consists the superior gravity of an oyster is not very apparent; yet it has long had that reputation as is evident from the ancient and well known couplet:

“ The gravest beast is an ase, the gravest bird an owl,
The gravest fish an oyster, the gravest man a fool."

LINES ON

NEWLY-OPENED YORK-BANKER.

With feelings strange and undefined I gaze upon thy face,
Thou choice and juicy specimen of an ill-fated race;
How calmly, yea, how meekly thou reclinest in thy shell,
Yet what thy woes and sufferings are man may conjecture well!

For thou hast life as well as he who recklessly seeks thine,
And, couldst thou speak, might draw forth tears as briny as thy brine;
For thou was torn from friends and home and all thy heart could wish,
Thou hapless, helpless, innocent, mute, persecuted fish.

Perhaps thou wast but newly joined to some soft plump young bride,
Who op'd her mouth for food with thee when flowed the flowing tide ;*

* Oysters taken from the river and kept in fresh water, open their mouths at the time of the flowing in of the tide, in expectation of their accustomed food.- Kitchiner.

Perhaps thou hast a family, from whom thou hast been torn,
Who sadly wail for him, alas, who never will return !

Thou wast happy on thy native bed, where blithesome billows play,
Till the cruel fisher wrench'd thee from thy home, sweet home,'away;
He stow'd thee in his coble and he rowed thee to the strand-
Thou wast bought and sold and opened, and placed in this right hand !

I know that while I moralize thy flavor fades away,
I know thou shouldst be ate alive,* before thy sweets decay!
I know that it is foolishness, this weak delay of mine,
And epicures may langh at it as sentimental whine.

Well, let them laugh, I still will drop a tear o'er thy sad fate,
Thou wretched and ill-fated one! thou sad and desolate!
O'er thee and o'er thy kindred hangs one all-consuming doom,
To die a slow and lingering death, or, living, find a tomb!

Like the Indian from the forest-like the roebuck from the glen,
Thy race is dwindling silently before the arts of men;
Ye are passing from the river, from the sea-bank, and the shore,
And the haunts that long have known ye, shall know ye soon no more!

The Blue-point and the Shrewsburyt are vanishing away,
And clamless soon will be our streams, and oysterless our bay ;
Rapacious man, before your prime, ordains that ye shall die,
And drags ye from your cool retreats to boil and stew and fry!

Why were ye made so racy, rich, and luscious to the taste ? 'Tis that has stripped your thickest banks, and made your beds a waste; “Your virtues have proved sanctified and holy traitors to ye,” And that which was your proudest boast has served but to undo ye!

E'en 1, the friend of all thy kind, when I think of what thou art,
When I ponder o'er the melting joys thy swallowing will impart,
Can delay thy fate no longer ; one look, it is my last!
A gulp-one more-a silent pause-a sigh—and all is past !

* Those who wish to enjoy this delicious restorative in the utmost perfection must eat it the moment it is opened, with its own gravy in the under shell ; if not eaten while absolutely alive, its flavor and spirit are lost.-Kitchiner.

+ Two famous species, found adjacent to New-York, now nearly extinct.

PASSAGES

IN THE LIFE OF AN UNFORTUNATE.

“Ah me! for aught that ever I could read,
Could ever hear by tale or bistory,
The course of true love never did run smooth."

THOMAS AUGUSTUS PHELPS was a junior clerk in a small retail store, in an unfrequented part of Maiden-lane. His salary was insignificant, and his expenses were considerable ; and, there being no visible channel through which extraneous funds could come into his possession, how he contrived, as the saying is, “to make both ends meet," was a problem which his most intimate friends were utterly una ble to solve, and which was, moreover, a subject upon which, for some reason or other, he always

declined to throw any light. He was generally characterized as a genteel and rather wellinformed young man—that is, his dress was unexceptionable; his address easy, forward, and flippant; and he discoursed with uncommon fluency on a number of subjects which he knew nothing about.

15

VOL. I.

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