Nat. Ord. (Natural Order) Corylacï¿½. Lin. Syst. (Linnean System) Monï¿½cia, Polyandria. The Beech is a large, compact, and lofty tree, with a greyish bark and finely divided spray, and is a common inhabitant of the forest in all temperate climates. In the United States, this tree is generally found congregated in very great quantities, wherever the soil is most favorable; hundreds of acres being sometimes covered with this single kind of timber. Such tracts are familiarly known as "beech woods." The leaves of the beech are remarkably thin in texture, glazed and shining on the upper surface, and so thickly set upon the numerous branches, that it forms the darkest and densest shade of any of our deciduous forest trees. It appears to have been highly valued by the ancients as a shade tree; and Virgil says in its praise, in a well-known Eclogue: "Tityre, tu patulï¿½ recubans sub tegmine fagi, Sylvestrem tenui musam meditaris avena."