Nests and Eggs of Familiar British Birds, Described and Illustrated: With an Account of the Haunts and Habits of the Feathered Architects, and Their Times and Modes of Buildings

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Groombridge and sons, 1855 - Birds - 79 pages
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Page 12 - When merry milkmaids click the latch, And rarely smells the new-mown hay, And the cock hath sung beneath the thatch Twice or thrice his roundelay, Twice or thrice his roundelay ; Alone and warming his five wits, The white owl in the belfry sits.
Page 60 - THE bird that soars on highest wing Builds on the ground her lowly nest ; And she that doth most sweetly sing, Sings in the shade when all things rest : In lark and nightingale we see What honour hath humility. When Mary chose the better part, She meekly sat at Jesus...
Page 11 - Now fades the glimmering landscape on the sight, And all the air a solemn stillness holds, Save where the beetle wheels his droning flight, And drowsy tinklings lull the distant folds ; Save that, from yonder ivy-mantled tower, The moping owl does to the moon complain Of such as, wandering near her secret bower, Molest her ancient solitary reign.
Page 20 - With joy — and oft an unintruding guest, I watched her secret toils from day to day, How true she warped the moss to form her nest, And modelled it within with wood and clay.
Page iv - No nail to fix, no bodkin to insert, No glue to join: his little beak was all, And yet how neatly finished. What nice hand, With every implement and means of art, And twenty years' experience to boot, Could make me such another?
Page 21 - Ink-spotted over, shells of green and blue; And there I witnessed, in the summer hours, A brood of nature's minstrels chirp and fly, Glad as the sunshine and the laughing sky.
Page iv - To view the structure of this little work, A bird's nest. Mark it well, within, without. No tool had he that wrought, no knife to cut, No nail to fix, no bodkin to insert, No glue to join; his little beak was all. And yet how neatly finish'd ! What nice hand, With ev'ry implement and means of art, And twenty years apprenticeship to boot, Could make me such another?
Page 3 - Snowdon's rocks, or Orkney's wide domain, Whose beetling cliffs o'erhang the western main ; The royal bird his lonely kingdom forms Amidst the gathering clouds and sullen storms; Through the wide waste of air he darts his sight, And holds his sounding pinions...
Page 3 - Western main, The royal bird his lonely kingdom forms Amidst the gathering clouds and sullen storms ; Through the wide waste of air he darts his sight, And holds his sounding pinions poised for flight ; With cruel eye premeditates the war, And marks his destined victim from afar : Descending in a whirlwind to the ground, His pinions like the rush of waters sound ; The fairest of the fold he bears away, And to his nest compels the struggling prey ; He scorns the game by meaner hunters tore, And dips...
Page 61 - The daisied lea he loves, where tufts of grass Luxuriant crown the ridge ; there, with his mate, He founds their lowly house, of withered bents, And coarsest speargrass ; next, the inner work With finer and still finer fibres lays, Rounding it curious with his speckled breast.

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