f, as becomes a poor relation, though created from the self-same mud,— a fact which Hawthorne has beautifully moralized.
The prouder Nelumbium, a second-cousin, lineal descendant of the sacred bean of Pythagoras, has fallen to an obscurer position, but dwells, like a sturdy democrat, in the Far West.
Yet, undisturbed, the water-lily reigns on, with her retinue around her. The tall pickerel-weed (Pontederia) is her gentleman-usher, gorgeous in blue and gold through July, somewhat rusty in August.
The water-shield (Hydropeltis) is chief maid-of-honor; a high-born lady she, not without royal blood indeed, but with rather a bend sinister; not precisely beautiful, but very fastidious; encased over her whole person with a gelatinous covering, literally a starched duenna.
Sometimes she is suspected of conspiring to drive her mistress from the throne; for we have observed certain slow watercourses where the leaves of the water-lily have been almost wholly replaced, in a series of years,
now at the caves, at a distance from any chimney, while the mercury on the same side was only fifteen degrees above zero, not having indeed risen above the point of freezing during the whole day.
Dr. Kane pays ample tribute to these kindly properties.
Few of us at home can recognize the protecting value of this warm coverlet of snow.
No eider-down in the cradle of an infant is tucked in more kindly than the sleeping-dress of winter about this feeble flower life.
The first warm snows of August and September, falling on a thickly bleached carpet of grasses, heaths, and willows, enshrine the flowery growths which nestle round them in a non-conducting air-chamber; and as each successive snow increases the thickness of the cover, we have, before the intense cold of winter sets in, a light, cellular bed covered by drift, six, eight, or ten feet deep, in which the plant retains its vitality.... I have found in midwinter, in this high latitude of 78° 50′, the surface so nearly moist as t