"The Rose, as well as the Myrtle, is considered as sacred to the Goddess of beauty. Berkley, in his Utopia, describes lovers as declaring their passion by presenting to the fair-beloved a rose. 269

Rose-bud just beginning to open; if the lady accepted and wore the bud, she was supposed to favor his pretensions. As time increased the lover's affections, he followed up the first present by that of a half-blown Rose, which was again succeeded by one full-blown; and if the lady wore this last, she was considered as engaged for life.

"Poetry is lavish of roses; it heaps them into beds, weaves them into crowns, twines them into arbors, forges them into chains, adorns with them the goblet used in the festivals of Bacchus, plants them in the bosom of beauty, - nay, not only delights to bring in the Rose itself upon every occasion, but seizes each particular beauty it possesses as an object of comparison with the loveliest works of nature : - as soft as a rose-leaf; as sweet as a rose; rosy clouds; rosy cheeks; rosy lips; rosy blushes; rosy dawns, etc., etc. It is commonly united with the Lily :'In the time that the morning did strew Roses and Violets on the heavenly floor against the coming of the sun.5

'A bed of Lilies flower upon her cheek, And in the midst was set a circling Rose.'

'Rosed all in lovely crimson are thy cheeks, Where beauties indeflourishing abide, And as to pass his fellow either seeks, Seem both to blush at one another's pride.'

"The Red Rose is said to have been indebted for its color to the blood which flowed from the thorn-wounded feet of Venus when running through the woods in despair for the loss of Adonis; as the White Rose is also-said to have sprung from the tears which the goddess shed upon that occasion. Ample reasons these for dedicating them to her.

' White as the native Rose before the change, Which Venus' blood did in her leaves impress.'

Anacreon tells us to at it was dyed with nectar by the gods 23* when it was first formed; he speaks of it, too, as the flower of Bacchus: ' With nectar drops, a ruby tide, The sweetly orient buds they dyed, And bade them bloom; the flowers divine Of him who sheds the teeming vine.

Some say they were dyed with the blood of Cupid; and

---------' 'T is said, as Cupid danced among

The gods, he down the nectar flung;

Which, on the white Rose being shed, Made it forever after red.'

But the general opinion is, that the Hose is indebted to Venus for its beautiful blushes.

"Perhaps the most beautiful season of the Rose is when partly blown; then too she still promises us a continuance of delight; but when full-blown, she inspires us with the fear of losing her.

"Constance, expatiating on the beauty of her son, says, 'Nature and fortune joined to make thee great; Of nature's gifts thou mayst with Lilies boast, And with the half-blown Rose'

"The bed of roses is not altogether a fiction. 'The Roses of the Sinan Nile, or garden of the Nile, attached to the Emperor of Morocco's palace, are unequalled; and mattresses are made of their leaves, for men of rank to recline upon.'

"The Eastern poets have united the Rose with the nightingale; the Venus of flowers with the Apollo of birds; the Rose is supposed to burst forth from its bud at the song of the nightingale.

" A festival is held in Persia, called the Feast of Roses, which lasts the whole time they are in bloom.

'And all is ecstasy, for now The valley holds its Feast of Roses ;

That joyous time when pleasures pour Profusely round, and in their shower Hearts open, like the season's Rose, -. The flowret of a hundred leaves, Expanding while the dew-fall flows, And every leaf its halm receives !'

"'Persia is the very land of Roses. - "On my first entering this bower of fairy land," says Sir Robert Kerr Porter, speaking of the garden of one of the royal palaces of Persia, "I was struck with the appearance of two Rose-trees, full fourteen feet high, laden with thousands of flowers, in every degree of expansion, and of a bloom and delicacy of scent that imbued the whole atmosphere with exquisite perfume. Indeed, I believe that in no country in the world does the Rose grow in such perfection as in Persia; in no country is it so cultivated and prized by the natives. Their gardens and courts are crowded by its plants, their rooms ornamented with vases filled with its gathered bunches, and every bath strewed with the full-blown flowers, plucked with the ever-replenished stems. * * * * But in this delicious garden of Negaaristan, the eye and the smell are not the only senses regaled by the presence of the Rose. The ear is enchanted by the wild and beautiful notes of multitudes of nightingales, whose warblings seem to increase in melody and softness with the unfolding of their favorite flowers. Here, indeed, the stranger is more powerfully reminded that he is in the genuine country of the nightingale and the Rose." - {Persia in Miniature, vol. iii.)

"Sir William Ouseley accompanied his brother, the ambassador, on a visit to a man of high rank at Teheran; and though there was a great profusion of meat and fruit at this entertainment, 'it might,' he says, ' have been styled the Feast of Roses, for the floor of the great hall, or open-fronted talar, was spread in the middle, and in the recess, with Roses forming the figures of cypress-trees; Roses decorated all the candlesticks, which were very numerous. The surface of the hawz, or reservoir of water, was completely covered with rose-leaves, which also were scattered on the principal walks leading to the mansion.'

" He says that the surface of this reservoir was so entirely covered with rose-leaves, that the water was visible only when stirred by the air, and that the servants, during the entertainment, were continually scattering fresh Roses both upon the waters and the floor of the hall.*

"We must not dismiss the subject of the Rose, without recalling to the minds of our readers those beautiful lines from Milton: -----------------'Eve separate he spies,