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Excerpt from Wild Life in a Southern County
There is a frontier line to civilisation in this country yet, and not far outside its great centres we come quickly even now on the borderland of nature. Modern progress, except where it has exterminated them, has scarcely touched the habits of bird or animal; so almost up to the very houses of the metropolis the nightingale yearly returns to her former haunts. If we go a few hours' journey only, and then step just beyond the highway Where the steam ploughing engine has left the mark of its wide wheels on the dust - and glance into the hedge row, the copse, or stream, there are nature's children as unrestrained in their wild, free life as they were in the veritable backwoods of primitive England. So, too, in some degree with the tillers of the soil old manners and customs linger, and there seems an echo of the past in the breadth of their pronunciation.
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