Page:A Tour Through the Batavian Republic.djvu/27

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15
THE BATAVIAN REPUBLIC

to find them, from what I have seen in England or abroad. The country exhibits a wonderful display of the mighty effects which human industry is capable of achieving. It is an extensive territory, rich in agriculture, and crowded with cities, rescued by the vast efforts of man from the dominion of the sea[1]. From the deck of the vessel, on board of which I write this letter, the prospect of cultivated and pasture

  1. Goldsmith's description of Holland, in his Traveller, is equally to be admired for the beauty of the poetry, and the fidelity of the picture.—
    To men of other minds my fancy flies,
    Embosomed in the deep where Holland lies.
    Methinks her patient sons before me stand,
    Where the broad ocean leans against the land,
    And, sedulous to stop the coming tide,
    Lift the tall rampires' artificial pride.
    Onward, methinks, and diligently flow,
    The firm, connected bulwark seems to grow;
    Spreads its long arms amidst the wat'ry roar,
    Scoops out an empire, and usurps the shore:
    While the pent ocean, rising o'er the pile,
    Sees an amphibious world beneath him smile;—
    The flow canal, the yellow-blossom'd vale,
    The willow-tufted bank, the gliding sail,
    The crowded mart, the cultivated plain—
    A new creation rescued from his reign.
    I cannot conceive what the poet means by " the yellow-blossom'd vale," but the rest of the description is uncommonly happy and animated.