Sivut kuvina
PDF
ePub

dried, beaten, combed, and otherwise so prepared,
that the long and fine fibres can be separated from
the shorter and coarser ones. The former are
called flax or lint, and the latter receive the name
of tow. The lint is then spun into yarn, by draw-
ing out several of the fibres and twisting them to-
gether; but it is quite needless to describe to you
the operation of a spinning wheel, which all of you
have so often seen. The yarn is then given to the
weaver, who manufactures it into a web of cloth;
and the web is given to the bleacher, who, by
frequent watering, assisted sometimes by an acid
liq'uor, gives it its beautiful whiteness. The lin'en
manufacture is of all different degrees of fineness,
from the coarsest sheeting to the finest cambrie
It is the coolest and cleanliest of all our clothing,
and is therefore generally placed by us next our
skin, except in warmer climates, where cotton is
often preferred. Even after the linen has been
worn to rags and tatters, it does not cease to be
useful. These rags are not only employed by the
surgeon in the dressing of wounds and sores, for
which they are much better adapted than cotton
rags, but another, and a very important branch of
usefulness then commences, of which you are
prob'a-bly not at all a-ware', and will be very much
astonished when I tell you, that it is of these rags
that
paper

is made. Is it not curious to think of the number of different persons, to whom the paper of that little book, which yo are now read

1

ing, has been of service; namely, the flax-growers, the flax-pullers, the various classes of flax-dressers, the spinsters, the weavers, the bleachers, the linendrapers, the seamstresses, the wearers, the papermakers, the stationers, the printers, the booksellers, the readers, &c. ? Nor is it the fibres alone of the flax that are useful to man; the seed also, when pressed in a mill, yields an oil known by the name of linseed oil, which is of peculiar use to painters ; and the refuse, which forms what are called oil cakes, is no less serviceable in the feeding of cattle.

QUESTIONS

What is linen made from? Where is the flax put after it is pulled? Why is it steeped in water? What act did the parliament of Scotland pass regarding flax? Why was this act passed? What is done to the flax after it has been long enough in the water What are the shorter and coarser fibres called ? After the flax is spun what is done with it ? How does the bleacher whiten the linen? What useful article is made from old linen rags ? To how many sorts of people has Alax been of service? What is made from the seed ?

THE CHATTERBOX.

rom morning till night it was Lu'cy's delight

To chatter and talk without stopping; There was not a day but she rattled away,

Like water for ever a dropping!

o matter at all, if the subject were small, Or not worth the trouble of saying,

'Twas equal to her, she would talking pre-fer,

To working, or reading, or playing.

You may think, now, perhaps, there must havo

been gaps,

If she had not been wonderful clever ; Since her sense was so great, and so witty her pate,

That her tongue was not moving for ever : But that's quite absurd, for, have you not heard,

That much tongue and few brains are connected ? That they are suppos'd to think least who talk most,

And their wisdom is always suspected ?

While Lucy was young, had she bridled her tongue,

With a little good sense and ex-er'tion : Who knows but she might now have been our de

light, Instead of our jest and a-ver'sion ?

IRON.

If the vallue of a metal depended merely upon its u-til'i-ty, iron would then rank as the very highest, there being none which is nearly so ser'vice-a-ble to man. To state all the uses to which it is applied, would be quite im-pos'si-ble. I may just remind you, that of this metal almost all our im'ple-ments of agʻri-cul-ture are made, such as ploughs, harrows

spades, hoes, scythes, sickles ;-almost all our me-chan'ics' tools, as hatchets, saws, planes, chisels, hammers ;-almost all our ma-chin'er-y, from the simplest le'ver to the steam en'gine ;-all our sharp in'stru-ments, as knives, raʼzors, lancets ;-most of our kitchen u'ten-sils, as grates, stoves, pokers, tongs, pots, pans :-most of the se-cu'ri-ties of our dwellings, as locks, bolts, bars, rails :-and almost all our im'ple-ments of war, as cannons, bombs, mortars, balls, spears, bay'o-nets, swords.

Iron is the hardest of all metals, the most e-lastic, one of the lightest, and, in certain states, one of the most te-na'cious or least easy to be broken. There are three different states in which it is made use of, cast iron, forged iron, and steel. When the iron, as first melted from the ore, is cast into moulds without any further prep-a-ra'tion, it is called cast iron; in which state it is used for pots, cauldrons, cannons, cannon-balls, grates, and other purposes in which the iron is not likely to be bent: for cast iron, when bent, is very li'a-ble to break. Iron is forged by beating it, when red hot, with heavy hammers till it becomes flex'i-ble, or a'ble to be bent without breaking ; it is chiefly used in this state for bolts, bars, horse shoes, and other purposes in which much strength is needed. Steel is made by heating small bars of iron with wood-ashes, charcoal, bone or horn sha'vings, or the like, by which it acquires a fi'ner grain, and more com-pact' texture, and becomes harder and more elastic. Steel is temperer, as it is called, by heating it, and then suddenly cooling it in water, and, according to the heat which is applied to it in this op-c-ra'tion, it becomes either brittle like a pen-knife, which you know will break, if you attempt to bend it, or flexible like a watch spring, which you may bend round and round without breaking. All our cutting instruments ar made of steel. Iron is sometimes used for med'1cine, being supposed to strengthen the con-sti-tu'tion, and some waters are recommended as me-dic'i-nal, on account of the iron in them. These are called cha-lyb'e-ate waters, and have an inky taste.

As iron is the most useful of all metals, so our Creator has wisely ordained that it should be the most common; there being hardly any country in which it is not to be found.

QUESTIONS What metal is the most serviceable to man? Mention some of the articles made from this useful metal? What do you call the different states in which iron is used ? What is cast iron ? For what is cast iron used ? How is iron forged ? For what is forged iron chiefly used ? How is steel made ? Name some of the instruments made from steel? Įs iron ever used in any other way.

THE CUCKOO.

The cuckoo is of a grey'ish colour : in size it is somewhat less than a pigeon; in shape it is like the magpie ; and it has round standing-out nostrils. It is one of those birds that mi'grate from one country to another. It vis'its us in the spring, and

« EdellinenJatka »