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GEORGE IV. AT HOLYROOD.

EDINBURGH was first called, in the seventh century,
OUD Edwin's Burgh, after Edwin, King of Northumberland.

After the murder of James IX, in the fifteenth century,
the Castle of Edinburgh was selected as the stronghold
for the government offices and the royal family, and

then the city became the capital of the kingdom. It was a walled city, and it became necessary to make it as large as possible, therefore it was increased in height instead of breadth, and the houses ran up

and

up, like Jack's bean, until they became ten and eleven stories high. The old city was built upon three parallel ridges running east and west, and on the west end of the central ridge is the Castle of Edinburgh, and at the east end is the Castle of Holyrood.

I wonder if you know about one of the last royal entertainments that gathered in the Palace of Holyrood. Before we begin the story, we will tell how the palace happened to receive its name.

Adjoining the palace is the ruin of an old abbey built by King David I. One day the king was hunting in the forest of Drumselch, when he was attacked by a large deer, and, as he carelessly dropped his weapon, his life became in imminent danger. He was endeavouring to ward off the furious assaults of the animal with his hands, but, becoming weary and faint, was about to resign himself to death, when a cross, called a rood, was dropped from heaven into his hands, the sight of which so frightened the animal that he turned and fled. This wonderful circumstance put an end to the chase, and the king returned to the Castle of Edinburgh. That night a vision appeared, in which he was instructed to erect an abbey where he received the heavenly

In obedience to the dream, in 1128, he built an abbey for the canons, and called it Holy-rood, or Holy-cross, and deposited therein the cross which was sent from heaven, where it remained until the reign of David II.

The palace of Holyrood was commenced by James V. in 1528, and was the residence of the kings. Since Edinburgh ceased to be the seat of a court, the palace has only been used by the kings when they visited Scotland, and the last visit was made by George IV. about fifty years ago. The Scots had not seen a king in their country for nearly two hundred years—some time in the reign of Charles II.and though they had but little affection for King George IV., who came of the Hanoverian line, they determined, by extra demonstrations of loyalty, to make up for the rude treatment of former princes, As soon as King George IV. expressed a wish to hold a levée and meet all the nobility of Scotland, earls, dukes, lords, all began preparations to make this as elegant a reception as any ever held by the king in London. The men felt great solicitude, but all the ladies, whose family or fortune could in any way give them the privilege of appearing at court, felt an anxiety far in excess of any before

cross.

experienced on any occasion in their lives. Those who had appeared in court in London tried to encourage their friends, and instruct their daughters in all the court etiquette. The family coronets and jewels were brightened ; velvet, silk, and satin were made into court dresses. Feathers were in such demand that it was decreed that not more than two dozen should be worn on any one head. The dresses were made with a train of several yards in length, and the ladies were taught how to carry this trail of velvet or silk under the arm, and then drop it, at the right moment, in a genteel manner, and cause it to spread gracefully behind. The sleeves were made short, and adorned with Brussels lace; the same kind of lace, ostrich feathers, and diamonds on the head ; rich ornaments at the neck, wrists, and belt.

The gentlemen's court dress was made of wine-coloured cloth, the pockets, wrist-bands, and collar embroidered; the ruffles at the wrist of point-lace; the hose white silk, and the knee-breeches of white cashmere fastened below the knee with silver or diamond buckles. Those who were to be presented at court hastened to Holyrood palace during all the hours of the morning, (many, to be there in season, rising earlier than ever before in their lives. When the door into the room where these people were congregated was opened, and the usher of the white rod announced that the king desired the honour of the ladies' company in the presence-chamber, much as the ladies had desired to do themselves this honour, so great was the dread of entering his Majesty's presence, that the first to enter, a countess, turned deathly pale and trembled like a rose-leaf in a storm. It must have required real courage to enter the room alone, giving ap her attendant's arm at the door, pull off one glove, let down her train, hear her name announced, and then advance, with the eyes of the king and his attendants fixed upon her, across a large apartment, be again announced, properly meet and greet the king, feel sure when the conference was ended, and gracefully retire backward to the door. A lady who witnessed this drawing-room reception said the change of countenance from one of anxiety on entering, to one of satisfaction when leaving the audience-room, was marvellous. Though not quite all wore the satisfied look at the close of the reception, for a few made egregious blunders, which spoiled all their pleasure on the occasion.

One very fat lady, just as she reached the king, caught her foot in her dress, and fell on her knees before him. This was too funny for even the politeness of a king, and he had to put his handkerchief to his face to conceal his merriment. The lady was too fat to help herself, and her face turned first red, then purple, when a man with strong arms lifted her from her humble position, and she beat a hasty retreat. A young lady mistook one of the lords for the king. She was very handsome, and the lord took the privilege of the king, kissed her cheek, and then told her of her mistake.

One lady, in retiring, became entangled in her dress, and in her confusion whirled round and round like a dancing dervish, until she

a

218

OCR NEAREST PLANETARY NEIGHBOUR.

became so bewildered that she could not stand, when a friendly hand caught her and assisted her to the door, where she vanished from the sight of the king and his suite.

After three hours this reception was over, the king left the audience-room, and in a few days the country, but all who appeared at this court considered it the greatest event of their lives.

66

gem of the

OUR NEAREST PLANETARY NEIGHBOUR.

EIGHBOUR” did we say? Why, the planet we are

to treat of is, when nearest to us, twenty-seven million. miles away—a distance which would take a cannon ball, flying at the rate of five hundred miles an hour, six years and three months to traverse !

Yet, when we compare the distance of this planet from the earth proportionately with that of the other heavenly bodies, it has a good claim to be considered a neighbour. In the Western sky, during the long summer twilight hours

, there shines a bright star-so bright and beautiful that astronomers hape named it after the fairest of heathen divinities—the goddess Venus. It may be interesting to point our telescope to the West for a few moments, and try to learn a little about this “ crimson coloured even.

Well, then, to descend from poetry to figures, we shall find that the surface of Venus is about nine-tenths of that of the earth, that is to say, she is far nearer to the earth in size than any of the other planets.

So similar in this respect is Venus to our own globe that Flammarion, an enthusiastic French writer, appears to be very anxious to pay her a visit ; he tells us that “all the magnificence of light and day which which we enjoy on the earth, Venus possesses in a higher degree." Yet it is possible to have too much of " light and day," and we fancy, were Flammarion transported to the orb of his choice for a short time, he would have too much ; for in Venus

, be it known, there is no temperate zone ; but, on the contrary, the arctic and tropical zones overlap, so that we have arctic and tropical regions far more severe in temperature than ours, whilst between we have a region subject to tropical heat and arctic cold in turn.

The German astronomer Schröter, who flourished towards the close of the last century, was the first to discover the existence of mountains on Venus : he estimated some to be as high as twentyeight miles. His statements were not at first believed, and Sir William Herschel wrote a critique disproving them ; yet time has shown them to be correct in the main.

The length of the day in our neighbouring planet closely corresponds to that of our own. Some astronomers, following

Bianchini's lead, assigned her a rotation of over twenty-four of our days, but it is now generally agreed that the day is twenty-three hours, twenty-one minutes long.

Two or three words and then I conclude.

Is there not a grand lesson to be learned from Astronomy? Does it not furnish an indisputable proof, if one be needed, of the existence of a Supreme Being? Turn to the West when the sun has set and view the bright orb of Venus; or, later on, when “the immeasurable heavens break open to their highest,” gaze upwards at the myriad stars that stud the beauteous milky-way, and ask what hard but that of God could have formed those countless suns; what hand but His could have arranged and set in motion the mighty mechauism of those vast systems. Then you will be ready to exclaim, “The heavens declare the glory of God, the firmament sheweth His handiwork."

J. H. P.

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A CLEAR DEFINITION. A MINISTER was preaching a special sermon for children and asking them various questions. In the course of his remarks he said, Can anyone

tell me the difference between a maker and a creator ?" One of the scholars replied, “One makes something out of something, and the other makes something out of nothing."-G. C. BRADLEY.

[After reading the above our younger friends will perhaps refer to Genesis ii., 3, where they will read of God resting from all His work which He had created and made, and, if their Bibles have marginal readings, they will find in the margin, “ created to make.” The definition of the scholar will give them an intelligent meaning of this expression.--EDITOR.]

SUNDAY-SCHOOL DEPARTMENT.

SCRIPTURE LESSONS FOR SUNDAY SCHOOLS.

AUGUST.

MORNING SUBJECTS.

Golden Texts

for Repetition. SUBJECT.

FOR READING.

THIRD QUARTER. 5 The Affliction of Israel... | Exod. v. 1-19..... | Heb. xii. 11. 12 Promises of Deliverance Exod. vi. 1-13.... Ps. 1. 15. 19 The First Plague......... Exod. vii. 14-25.. Jer. i. 19. 26 The Land of Egyptsmitten Exod. ix. 13–35... Ps. cii, 15.

AFTERNOON SUBJECTS.

Golden Texts

for Repetition. SUBJECT.

FOR READING.

THIRD QUARTER. 5 Paul sent to Macedonia... | Acts xvi, 1–21.... 2 Cor. ii. 14. 12 Paul and Silas in Prison Acts xvi. 22-40... Ps. xl. 3. 19 Thessalonians and Bereans Acts xvii. 1-15.... ver. 11. 26 Panl at Athens..... Acts xvii. 16-34.. | 1 Tim, ij, 5.

SEPTEMBER.

MORNING SUBJECTS.

Golden Texts

for Repetition. SUBJECT.

FOR READING.

THIRD QUARTER. 2 The Final Plague Exod. xi.

Heb. x. 31. 9 The Lord's Passover...... Exod. xii.1-14,29-36 1 Cor. v. 7. 16 The Flight from Egypt... Exod. xiii. 17t'oxiv.9 P8. cvi. 14. 23 The Sea Divided..... Exod. xiv. 10-31 l, Ps. ix. 16. 30 Moses' Song ........

Exod. xv. 1-21... Ps. lxvi. 16.

AFTERNOON SUBJECTS.

Golden Texts

for Repetition. SUBJBOT.

POR READING.

THIRD QUARTER. 2 Paul at Corinth

Acts xviii. 1-17 ... Rom, xii. 11. 9 Paul at Ephesus.... Acts xvii.24toxix.12 Ephes. ü. 1. 16 Power of the Word......... Acts xix. 18-28 ... Heb. iv. 12. 23 Paul at Miletus

Acts xx. 17–38 ... 2 Cor. iv. 5. 30 Review of the Quarter's Llessons

Ephes. ü. 13.

PUZZLES FOR CHILDREN.

BY UNCLE GEORGE.

By some means our Puzzle last month was not put in a very clear and distinct position. We are afraid it may be overlooked by some of our nephews and nieces. For this reason, and because the exercise is an unusually long one, we will continue it another month. We are farther induced to do this by the consideration that the INSTRUCTOR, we fear, will not have been in the hands of our young friends much before the end of the month.. Owing to the holding of our Conference in June, the punctual publication of the INSTRUCTOR for July is impracticable.

It is stated as a suggestive fact that the Saviour of the world has titles in the Bible answering to every letter of the alphabet. Our young readers will please give us as complete a Iist of these titles as they can collect.

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