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In all her length far winding lay,
8. High on the south, huge Benvenue
Down on the lake in masses threw
Sir Walter Scott (1771–1832).
Loch Katrine, a lake in the south-west of Perthshire, celebrated as the scene of Sir Walter Scott's Lady of the Lake. Ketturin is said to be the Celtic pronunciation. The name was thought by Sir Walter to have been derived from the Catterins or wild robbers who frequented its shores.
Huge as the tower, the Tower of Babel. Shinar was the ancient name of the tract of country through which the Tigris and Euphrates pass on their way to the sea.
dome, a hemispherical vault on the top of a building.
cupola, the round top of a dome. The word is derived either from the root of cup or a word meaning the top.
minaret (a lantern), a slender lofty turret or small tower, rising by different stages and having one or more projecting balconies from which the Mohammedan priests summoned the people to prayers.
mosque, a Mohammedan temple or place of worship. Mosques are square buildings, having before the chief gate a square court paved with white marble and surrounded with a low gallery, the roof of which is supported by pillars of marble.
No pathway, the defile here described is that between Loch Achray and Loch Katrine, and is called the Trossachs. Until the present road was made, there was no mode of issuing from the pass except by a natural ladder, composed of the branches and roots of trees.
Benvenue, a mountain to the south of Loch Katrine. The word means the little mountain, in contrast to Ben Ledi and Ben Lomond.
Ben-an stands at the western end of Loch Katrine on the northern side opposite Benvenue.
1. The stem, unlike the root which buries itself in the ground, courts the light and air of heaven. Sometimes stems are weak and, as in the Bramble and Periwinkle, trail on the ground. Wanting strength to stand alone the Passion-flower, like the common Pea, is provided with tendrils, by which it clings for support to other plants, and the Ivy, as was mentioned in a former lesson, has numerous claws by which it firmly attaches itself to rocks or trees. Such plants are designated Climbers.
2. Those which, like the Convolvulus, coil round other plants in a cork-screw fashion are Twining plants. Curiously enough, the course in some species is from right to left, but in others, as in the Hop, the direction is reversed. Those plants whose stems die down annually are Herbs: those which have permanent woody stems are Shrubs and Trees, the latter designation being reserved for those which have conspicuous trunks and attain at least five times the height of a man.
3. According to the structure of their stems three different kinds of trees may be distinguished. The first are top-growers, or Acrogens, like the Tree-fern, in which all additions to the plant are made at the summit. The second are inside-growers, or Endogens, like the Palm, in
which the increase in the dimensions of the stem takes place from within,--the new matter displacing or pushing out the old. The third and most numerous class is that of the outside-growers, or Exogens, in which all increase takes place from without, a new layer of woody matter being annually formed outside of that which preceded it.
To this class belong all the well-known forest trees, such as the Oak, the Ash, and the Beech.
4. In a section of the stem three principal parts are clearly distinguished, the bark, the wood, and the pith. The bark is formed of several layers. Of these the outermost is a fine transparent skin, which is best seen when the plant is young, and which generally allows us to see below it the tissue over which it lies. Under this skin or membrane is a layer which only in the cork-tree attains considerable thickness. Being only a superficial layer, and not the bark proper, it can be removed without injury to the tree. Its place is then taken by another layer similar to it, so that a new crop can be gathered every seven or eight years.
5. After still another layer comes the proper bark. Its layers are formed of thin membranes or coats, com
posed of elongated fibres, laid one upon another like the leaves of a book. The fibres sometimes simply lie side by side, and being long and tenacious they yield valuable textile fabrics. Sometimes, being closely interwoven with one another, they are worked up by the savages into various objects. Thus, by distending the bark of a little switch no larger than a quill, they make a nightcap or a whip, possessing all the flexibility of those we construct with the finest cord.
6. In some plants this part of the bark is exactly like certain cloths-vestments which nature offers us ready made. The inhabitants of New Zealand convert the inner bark of some of their trees into strong drapery, and having covered it with impressed patterns they put it to different uses, either to ornament their dwellings or to make their dresses of. In Havannah the negresses make their dresses of a softer and finer kind. On the Lagetta-tree layers are found, the intertwined fibres of which are as fine as our muslin, and even take its place in the toilet of the ladies, so that the name of lace-wood has been given to the tree which produces them.
7. The inner layers of the bark are sometimes formed of leaves sufficiently close and compact to constitute a kind of paper. It was from these that the ancient Egyptians made their celebrated Papyrus rolls on which they wrote, and which, spared by the hand of time, reveal to our astonished gaze works which go back to the days of the Pharaohs. The paper-sedge, which has such a strange aspect, and which grows on the banks of the Nile, has long been understood to furnish this precious material.
8. As soon as an exogenous plant begins to grow, its stem is found to be divided into two parts, quite distinct from one another, the inner pith and the bark. At the end of a year the pith has been separated from the bark by a circle of vascular bundles, which grow up all about it, but through which, by what are called rays, communication is still maintained. At the end of the second year a new circle has been formed outside of the former, and this proceeds year after year during the whole growth of the plant. In cold and temperate climates, in which the