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relating to the Comet, in your entertaining paper, you
will much oblige a constant reader.
The Comet was first seen in this neighbourhood about four o'clock on the morning of Sunday the 1st instant: it then appeared small and confused : it has since apparently increased much in size and splendour, but has never appeared quite so bright as on the evening of Saturday last the 7th instant. It is situated nearly in a line with those two stars in Ursa Major called the Pointers. It may be divided into three parts — Ist, the Nucleus ; 2dly, the Nebula, which surrounds the Nucleus; and, 3dly, the Coma, which first projects a little way forwards, and then going off on each side, forms a sort of double cauda, so that fixed stars may be distinctly seen through the two streams of light. It is a very curious, as well as a very rare occurrence, to see the Nucleus so distinctly through the Nebula as in the instance.
It is much to be wished that the Astronomer Royal would publish in the daily newspapers, once or twice a week, an abstract of his observations on the Comet.
O. A. E. P. S. While on the subject of Astronomy, I cannot help observing that we have no complete catalogue of all the fixed stars. If any one would take the trouble to compose and publish one, it would be rendering to science an essential service.
Hackney, Sept. 11.
We believe the two following letters were addressed to the Star Newspaper :
paper, the following observations on the Comet, made about 5 30" N. lat. and l' 30" W. long. of Greenwich.
It was first seen at about fortyfive minutes past three on Sunday morning, September 1, when it looked small, and was indistinctly seen, on account of the Moon, which shone bright. Since that time it has been increasing in size and brightness, moving in a direction nearly NW. and evidently approaching our orbit, from the rapid increase in the size of its Nucleus, which may be plainly seen through the Nebula, and was brighter, better defined, and larger last night than ever. I have, from time to time, taken particular notice of the proportion which its Nucleus hore to the diameter of the field of a large refracting telescope, and I have observed, that every night it becomes greater. At half after three this
morning the atmosphere was remarkably clear, and the light of the Comet so strong, that I was assured by persons who were out of doors, that it occasioned a shade from the trees.
Your constant reader, &c. Sept. 20, 1811.
Extract of a Letter from another Correspondent. “ The Comet is considerably nearer the earth than at the date of my last letter, as appears from its apparent magnitude, and the greater length of its train or tail, which now stretches about 10 degrees. No serious consequences need, however, be apprehended, as the path not only makes a very considerable angle with the ecliptic in which the earth moves, but its situation is now greatly above the plane of that circle.”
Comets, like other uncommon phenomena, were regarded formerly as being portentous of the fate of countries and of kingdoms. They were called terris mutantes regna Cometae.
September 13. St. Eulogius Bishop and Confessor.
St. Amatus Bishop and Confessor. St. Amatus
It seems that there was another little feast to Jove today, being the dedication of the Capitol, when the nail was fixed by the Praetor.
CHRONOLOGY.-The festival of Cornelius the Centurion is recorded as kept in the Greek Church today.
The battle of Marignan in 1515 was fought this day between the French and Swiss.
The Right Honourable Charles James Fox died at Chiswick House in 1806. On this enlightened statesman and universal philanthropist the following lines were written, and ascribed to Richard Fitzpatrick :
A Patriot's eren course he steered,
'Mid Faction's wildest form uninored : By all who marked his course revered,
By ali who knew bis heart beloved. It is a curious fact that the Marquis Cornwallis, Admiral Lord Nelson, Lord Thurlow, and Mr. Pitt, all died likewise this same year.
Tempus. — We shall give today some account of the various divisions of Tine, used artificially as convenient divisions, for social purposes, and of certain symbolical representations of them.' Time, which is a simple idea, and
consequently as undefinable as Space or Identity, is, nevertheless, measured by the Events which take place in it, and which gradually change and wane away, giving perpetually place to new ones, observing some general but hidden law of the universe, whereby the mysterious secondary agents of Duration form, maintain, destroy, and reproduce under new forms all the atoms of the universe :
Tempus edax rerum, tuque invidiosa vetustas,
Paulatim lentâ consumitis omnia morte.
Figures of the Months of the Year, and of the Divisions of Time.--In our Calendar we have given the English and the German name of each month in large capitals. The third name, and which is in italic capitals, is a name assumed for each month, founded on the natural circumstances which most strikingly characterize it. And these names, we trust, not being mythological, will not be objectionable to the Quakers and some other sects which refuse to acknowledge the names in common use. There ought to be some certain name capable of being used in every language for each month ; and we have, therefore, adopted a Latin one, which may be employed in all the scientific journals of Europe, as the descriptive character implied by the names will apply to all northern latitudes between 20 and 60' N. lat.
The following is Dr. Johnson's account of the months as designated in the European Calendar :
JANUARY, Januarius, Janvier Fr. The first month of the year
is derived from Janus, to whom it was among the Romans consecrated. January is represented as clad in white, the colour of the earth at this time, and is blowing the nails. Janus was painted with two faces, signifying Providence and Retrospection.
FEBRUARY, Februarius, Fevrier Fr. The name of the second month in the year, from Februa, the goddess of Purification. See our February 1 and 2. Shakespeare says :
You have such a February face,
So full of frost, of storm, and cloudiness. March is from Mars, Mars Fr. The third month of the year. March is emblematically drawn in tawnies, with a fierce aspect, a helmet upon his head to show this month was dedicated to Mars, as is observed in a work by Peacham on Drawing
APRIL, Aprilis, Avril Fr. The fourth month of the year, January counted first. April is represented by a girl in
green, with a garland of Myrtle and Hawthorn buds, in one hand Primroses and Violets, in the other the sign of Taurus.
MAY, Maius Lat. Mai Fr. The fifth month of the year; the confine of Spring and Summer; the early or gay part of life.
JUNE, Junius Lat. Juin Fr. The sixth month from January. June is drawn in a mantle of dark green.
JULY, Julius Lat. The month anciently called Quintilis, or the fifth from March, named July in honour of Julius Caesar; the seventh month from January. July, says Peacham, I would have drawn in a mantle of light yellow, eating cherries, with the face sunburnt.
AUGUST, Augustus, Août Fr. or the eighth month, was dedicated to the honour of Augustus Caesar: he was in that month created Consul, thrice triumphed in Rome, subdued Egypt to the Roman empire, and made an end of civil wars : being before called Sextilis, or the sixth from March.
SepTEMBER, September, Septembre Fr. The ninth month of the year; the seventh from March. September hath its name as being the seventh month from March: it is drawn with a merry and cheerful countenance, in a purple robe.
OCTOBER, October Lat. Octobre Fr. The tenth month of the year, or the eighth numbered from March. October is drawn in a raiment of yellow and carnation ; upon the head a garland of Oak leaves, in the right hand the sign Scorpio, in the left a basket of services.
NOVEMBER, November, Novembre Fr. The eleventh month of the year, or the ninth reckoned from March, which was, when the Romans named the months, accounted the first. November is drawn in a garment of changeable green, and black upon her head.
December, December, Decembre Fr. The last month of the year was named December, or the tenth month when the year began in March.
Men are April when they woo, and December when they wed, says Shakespeare, in “ As you like it.” Again in Cymbeline :
What should we speak of,
The rain and wind beat dark December. Emblematical representations of the months, seasons, and hours, have been favourite subjects with the painters in all ages; and we shall take occasion here to notice a few of them. Those above alluded to by Peacham appear to us injudiciously composed; the best perhaps we have met with is the following:
A procession is moving round in an elliptical figure on a serpent devouring his tail, representative of the year. The procession consists principally of twelve female figures representing the months. The first is that of a frolicsome female riding on a Ram, dressed in a green gown with a yellow body, and a helmet of blue with plumes of a hoary colour as if covered with a snow shower and waving as though in a violent wind. She evidently represents March ushered in by Aries; the yellow and green probably indicating the Daffodils, Crocuses, and other yellow flowers of this month: on her helmet is a Cameleon and the sign r.
After her comes a beautiful female riding on a Bull and dressed in a light blue robe, with a pale yellow girdle and white bonnet, and bears a bouquet of blue and white Hyacinths in her bosom: she holds an umbrella in her hand, emblematical of showers, marked with the sign 8.
Next follows a wanton looking girl in a car drawn by two young persons, each with a star in his forehead: she has a vest of many colours in stripes, representing the pink and white of the Tulip: her hair is uncovered, and is ornamented with a wreath of flowers of the Ranunculus and Peony. On the car is the sign 1.
The figure that immediately follows is of a beautiful female standing on a crab, who is labouring on his way with dificulty: she is dressed in pink, evidently designating the Roses of June, and she goads on her tired animal by means of a haymaker's fork, indicating that haytime beguiles the slow progress of the solstice. She bears the sign B.
Then comes a fierce looking and nutbrown nymph in yellow, riding on the neck of a Lion. She holds a shade of boughs over her head, and a basket of Strawberries and Currants in her hand, and shows the sign s.
After her proceeds a beautiful and chaste looking virgin habited in a Grecian robe of orange, and carrying a spike of corn in one hand, and a sickle in the other, with the sign m.
September follows next clad in a frock of russet brown, and she balances fruit in a pair of scales, and a basket on her arm. On her pannier is the mark 2.
A fresh coloured Bacchante then proceeds with purple skirts, and her head ornamented with the Vine and Grapes. She reels giddily along and stumbles on the tail of a Scorpion, · indicating perhaps the danger which the thoughtless steps
of inebriety leads us into. A bowl in one hand has the mark m.
A gloomy melancholy maid comes next, with large rolling blue eyes, and apparently very much dejected : her bow is slung across her shoulders, and a quiver by her side, from