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The Jeffersonian cyclopedia;

a comprehensive collection of the views of Thomas Jefferson classified and arranged in alphabetical order under nine thousand titles relating to government, politics, law, education, political economy, finance, science, art, literature, religious freedom, morals, etc.;

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831. BIRDS, Nightingale.—[continued].
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831. BIRDS, Nightingale.—[continued].

I have been for a week
past sailing on the canal of Languedoc, cloudless
skies above, limpid waters below, and on
each hand a row of nightingales in full chorus.
This delightful bird had given me a rich treat
before, at the fountain of Vaucluse. After visiting
the tomb of Laura at Avignon, I went to
see this fountain—a noble one of itself, and
rendered famous forever by the songs of Petrarch,
who lived near it. I arrived there somewhat
fatigued, and sat down by the fountain
to repose myself. It gushes, of the size of a
river, from a secluded valley of the mountains,
the ruins of Petrarch's chateau being perched
on a rock two hundred feet perpendicular
above. To add to the enchantment of the
scene, every tree and bush was filled with nightingales
in full song. I think you told me that
you had not yet noticed this bird. As you
have trees in the garden of the convent, there
might be nightingales in them, and this is the
season of their song. Endeavor to make yourself
acquainted with the music of this bird,
that when you return to your own country,
you may be able to estimate its merit in comparison
with that of the mocking-bird. The
latter has the advantage of singing through a
great part of the year, whereas the nightingale
sings about five or six weeks in the spring, and
a still shorter term, and with a more feeble
voice, in the fall.—
To Martha Jefferson. Ford ed., iv, 388.