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gical Society, and staked his reputation (to use his own expression) upon the fact that this piece of bone belonged to a gigantic bird, ostrich-like in appearance, but large in size, and destitute of wings. The idea of his pronouncing for the existence of a bird without wings, was received by many savans with a shake of the head. A few months after this, the whole skeleton was brought to England, with the exception of the front mandible and a few vertebræ, and he was enabled to build up the entire bird as it now stands in the College of Surgeons, reaching 10ft. in height.

I hope that at some future time the restoration of the Dinornis will make its appearance on the island already prepared for it at the Crystal Palace, together with the Mammoth, the foundation for which is already prepared. I allude the more particularly to these facts, as they shew the confidence we ought to have in the possibility of restoring these animals by induction, and by reasoning upon the fragments that have reached us. It is therefore with confidence that these restorations of extinct animals are offered for the first time, with a view to teach through the medium of the eyes. Grown-up people have a disinclination to sit down and learn abstruse knowledge from a book; and hence the good policy of supplying the same kind of instruction which Pestalozzi found so improving and interesting to the young. The first intention of the Crystal Palace was to present a series of objects to the eye that should amuse and at the same time instruct. We may possibly not have succeeded in doing all the great things intended, but at any rate a moiety, an instalment, has been presented there, which I humbly trust will prove useful, and be followed throughout the country, as it is one of the best means of uniting instruction with amusement.

ON READING.

BY MR. T. B. HEATH,

Member of the Pontymoile Mechanics' Institution.

READING is an art committed to our care, which it should be our utmost endeavour to improve. The improving of the mind, and the unfolding of its noble powers (bestowed by GoD) is one of the most pleasing duties of life. If a man possesses any self-respect, his anxious wish is to become intelligent; and if he is desirous of being and doing good, intellectual grace gives beauty to the plainest action. Ignorance ought to be looked upon as disgraceful to those who enjoy opportunities of acquiring knowledge. The wisest of men has told us that "wisdom is better than the greatest riches;" and that all things we may desire are as nothing in comparison with it. Crowns make kings,—but it takes good moral sense to make a man. A king may clothe himself in purple and fine linen; but without good sense he is inferior to the humblest peasant. The working man who spends his spare hours in reading, and gaining wisdom and knowledge, is sure to be respected and esteemed by those around him.

But it is of little use to have the power to read, if we do not turn it to practical account. We may learn to be clever at gymnastics and healthy games, but it is of very little consequence whether we forget or remember them,-as these do not affect our comfort

or happiness in after-life: but reading is an acquirement that, properly used, will make us wiser, better, and happier now and hereafter.

Books are wondrous helps in acquiring knowledge. Most of what the wisest men know, they learned from books. From books we may not only gather knowledge, by studying that art or science which we prefer, but good books give us consolation of mind, as well as instruction, after the toils of the day. Being myself a member of a Mechanics' Institute, I can appreciate the advantages offered for improvement by them. Such institutions are the sources through which a great deal of knowledge may be obtained. The most advantageous time for reading is to sit down with our books when we have time at our disposal, so as not to neglect other duties. The morning for those who go to work late, and the evening for those who cease work early, are the best times for reading. If we possess a desire to read, there are plenty of opportunities offered, after the laborious toil of the day is over, or before it begins. Reading Rooms are open in conjunction with most Mechanics' Institutions, which contain good and useful books, in reading which we are, as it were, consulting an esteemed friend, who continues to give advice to-day and for years to come. Books aid us in building up wisdom, and impart to us good moral principles. To gain profit from works of instruction we must read slowly and attentively. It has been truly said that "knowledge is no burden." The more a man has in his head, the easier will he find his walk through life. Get knowledge;-you will find it useful, whatever situation in life you are called to fill.

There is in reading a great difference between a good and bad method. A good method enables us to obtain great profit; but a bad one, no profit at all. If we get into the practice of reading carelessly, we do not understand what we are about: if we read

rapidly, we forget all that we read; and if we read without reflection, we derive but little good. Reading ought to be performed slowly and carefully: we should then be astonished at our success. It is much better to read one book well, than to read ten in an imperfect manner. As the body is not supported by the food which it consumes, but by that part which it digests, so is the mind made wise by those books we read with reflection. Books are now so numerous and easily procurable, that we scarcely know which to choose. If a person were offered a bag of gold and a bag of copper to choose from, and he accepted the latter, he would be considered a great simpleton; but a person who sits down to read bad books when there are plenty of good ones to choose from, is a greater simpleton. It is worse than a waste of time to read bad and foolish books, as we get no good from them, but possibly harm. Therefore it is very essential to read good books, to aid us in extending our knowledge, and in gaining valuable information: for if we are not anxious to profit by reading, we may as well discontinue altogether. Our object in reading ought to be, to increase our usefulness, and the happiness of ourselves and those connected with us,both in this and in the life to come. If we read with this intention, it will prove a blessing to us. We should read principally to improve our understanding and correct our errors; but above all, for the glory of GOD. Reading good books will adorn us more than the most magnificent of jewels; it will do us far greater service than riches; for it will make the soul healthy. Let parents set the example of reading none but good books, and their children will follow that example. When parents do their duty, as a rule they will never live to be despised by their children. Not only does the example of men affect, for good or for ill, their own families, but their fellow-men, and those by whom they are daily surrounded. When we consider that the industry of our working-classes has

raised England to her present exalted position among nations, we cannot but ask ourselves this question: -If the working men of Britain, as a class, would diligently read good and scientific works of instruction, what is to prevent them raising England to be a higher and more noble nation?

Let us look for a moment at the advantages England derives from a free and enlightened press. The Continental nations, in which the press and its publications are held in the iron grasp of despotism, are continually involved in revolutions and internal commotions; which might, to a great extent, be prevented, and peace might smile upon those lands, if the people would read earnestly, and with reflection, good and useful books.

Then, are we not right in saying that the reading and thoughtful habits of our countrymen have to a great extent given us the blessings of peace at home, and the possession of mighty countries abroad; freedom of thought, speech, and action, joined to a greater amount of freedom, than the inhabitants of any other country enjoy? Our mighty possessions give to the name of England a glory which is the envy of other nations, and to sustain which we must read thoughtfully, intelligently, and industriously, the standard works of this country: for, however high the charac ter of a nation may be exalted by force of arms and by physical strength, it will unquestionably be raised still higher by the proper training, morally and intellectually, of its people.

Let us, then, make use of those intellectual powers with which God has endowed us; for by so doing we shall be conferring the greatest benefits upon ourselves, those around us, and the nation at large.

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