Billeder på siden
PDF
ePub

The Royal Botanic Garden is situated a short way farther along Inverleith Row, and, embracing fourteen and a half acres, affords scope for the classification of plants according to the systems of Linnaeus and Jussieu. The professor of botany in the university lectures in a class-room at the entrance to the gardens. Strangers are freely admitted to the grounds.

New Cemetery.—Within the grounds of Warriston, nearly opposite to the Botanic Garden, on the east, is situated a cemetery, opened a few years ago by a society in Edinburgh. Provided with a handsome small chapel for funeral services, laid out with, great taste, and kept in first-rate order, this cemetery is a model of neatness, and we are glad to say it has met with deserved success. Recently, other five cemeteries, in different quarters of the environs, have been opened.

Granton, on the shore of the Forth, is about a mile from Inverleith Row, and is deserving of a visit for the purpose of seeing its new pier, built entirely at the cost of the Duke of Buccleuch, with reference to the improvement of his property in the neighbourhood. This noble undertaking is the greatest work of a private individual in Scotland. Steamers cross every hour from Granton to Burntisland in Fife. Strangers will be interested in knowing that a precipitous rock seen a little east from Burntisland, is that over which King Alexander III. fell and was killed, while passing to Dunfermline March 12, 1286; his death causing all those national troubles which produced the wars of Wallace and Bruce. Steamers also proceed from Granton to Stirling daily, thus giving strangers an opportunity of seeing the shores of the Forth, which abound in picturesque beauty and historical interest. Large steam-vessels sail from Granton twice a-week to London.

Railway Stations.—Edinburgh has lately become the centrepoint of a number of railways—the Edinburgh and Glasgow; the North British, in communication with Berwick-on-Tweed and London; and the Edinburgh and Granton, in communication with the north of Scotland—all of which have their terminus in the low ground between the Old and New Town. Other railways are in preparation, at least one of which is to terminate at the same point. The time of transit to London, when the lines are perfected, will be about fifteen hours.

Private Establishments.—Of these there are few of any interest in Edinburgh. The production and sale of literature being the principal business in the town, there are perhaps a few printing-houses worthy of notice, but these are not generally 8hown without a special introduction. The chief literary concerns now carrying on are the Edinburgh Review, Blackwood's Magazine, Tait's Magazine, Chambers's Edinburgh Journal, besides some other periodicals. Including miscellaneous works, the quantity of literature so produced is greater than is issued from any other city in the United Kingdom, London excepted. Edinburgh sends forth one newspaper thrice a-week, and several twice a-week, and weekly. Also the North British Advertiser, a weekly advertising sheet, distributed gratis (printed by machinery similar to that of the Times). Several type-founding and engraving establishments, likewise the studios of certain sculptors, particularly that of Mr John Steell, Randolph Place, may be included in the list of places of interest.

The New Academy, a large classical seminary in Henderson Row; the Deaf And Dumb Asylum, in the same street; the School or Arts, a mechanics' institution of a number of years' standing (open in the evenings); the Scottish Institution For The Education Of Young Ladies, situated in Moray Place, and which, besides possessing a high reputation, has served as a model for various seminaries of a like nature; and the General Assembly's Normal School, new road, Castle Hill—are all deserving of attention.

Leith, the ancient port of the Scottish metropolis, besides a harbour, docks, and a very long pier projected into the Forth, contains some extensive glass and other manufactories worthy of the attention of the curious in such matters. Some memorials of Cromwell's bombardment of the town still exist; in particular, a large mound erected in the links.

Portobello is a moder n and neatly-built town on the shore of the Forth, situated at the distance of two miles to the east of Edinburgh, on the line of the London road. During summer it is a great resort for sea-bathing, for which its long stretch of fine sands peculiarly adapt it. Musselburgh, an ancient burgh of regality, another pleasing summer resort, is situated two miles eastward.

Roslin.—The stranger should not by any means quit Edinburgh without visiting Roslin Chapel and Castle, situated about six miles southward, on the banks of the Esk. The chapel, which is part of a collegiate church never completed, is one of the most beautiful existing specimens of the florid Gothic architecture. It was built by William St Clair, Earl of Orkney, in 1446, and, after being nearly a century in use, was despoiled at the Reformation; it was also injured by a mob at the revolution of 1688. Placed by its proprietor, the Earl of Roslin, in the charge of the neighbouring innkeeper, it is freely shown to strangers. According to Scott—

"There are twenty of Roslin's barons bold
Lie buried within that proud chapelle."

Roslin castle, in ruins, stands on a jutting crag at a lower part of the dell; and the walk from this point to Hawthornden and Lasswade is one of the most picturesque in Scotland. At about two miles from Lasswade is situated Dalkeith House, the principal residence of the Duke of Buccleuch, noted for its excellent collection of pictures, and also the beauty of its environs.

[graphic][merged small]

$-3f/\ft>> BOUT the year 1786, the merchants and planters in^y^VJNterested in the West India islands became anxious JJp|sajjrto introduce an exceedingly valuable plant, the bread

12*/»ji fruit tree, into these possessions, and as this could "Sj best be done by a government expedition, a request was pre^ferred to the crown accordingly. The ministry at the time

W being favourable to the proposed undertaking, a vessel,

0 named the Bounty, was selected to execute the desired object. To the command of this ship Captain W. Bligh was appointed, August 16, 1787. The burthen of the Bounty was nearly two hundred and fifteen tons. The establishment of men and officers for the ship was as follows:—1 lieutenant to command, 1 master, 1 boatswain, 1 gunner, 1 carpenter,

1 surgeon, 2 master's mates, 2 midshipmen, 2 quarter-masters, 1 quarter-master's mate, 1 boatswain's mate, 1 gunner's mate, 1 carpenter's mate, 1 carpenter's crew, 1 sailmaker, 1 armourer, 1 corporal, 1 clerk and steward, 23 able seamen—total, 44. The addition of two men appointed to take care of the plants, made the whole ship's crew amount to forty-six. The ship was stored and victualled for eighteen months.

Thus prepared, the Bounty set sail on the 23d of December, and what ensued will be best told in the language of Captain Bligh, whose interesting narrative we abridge.

THE VOYAGE—OTAHEITE.

My instructions relative to the voyage, furnished me by the Commissioners of the Admiralty, were as follows:—I was to proNo. 122." i

ceed, as expeditiously as possible, round Cape Horn to the SocietyIslands. Having arrived at the above-mentioned islands, and taken on board as many trees and plants as might be thought necessary (the better to enable me to do which, I had already been furnished with such articles of merchandise and trinkets as it was supposed would be wanted to satisfy the natives), I was to proceed from thence through Endeavour Straits, which separate New Holland from New Guinea, to Prince's Island, in the Straits of Sunda; or, if it should happen to be more convenient, to pass on the eastern side of Java to some port on the north side of that island, where any bread-fruit trees which might have been injured, or have died, were to be replaced by such plants growing there as might appear most valuable. From Prince's Island, or the island of Java, I was to proceed round the Cape of Good Hope to the West Indies, and deposit one-half of such of the above-mentioned trees and plants as might be then alive at his majesty's botanical garden at St Vincent, for the benefit of the Windward Islands, and then go on to Jamaica; and having delivered the remainder to Mr East, or such person or persons as might be authorised by the governor and council of that island to l'eceive them, make the best of my way back to England.

Setting sail from Spithead, as I have mentioned, on the 23d of December 1787, we arrived early in April 1788, without any special incident having occurred, in the neighbourhood of Cape Horn, round which, according to my instructions, I was to direct my voyage. By no possible exertions, however, could we make -way in that route, owing to unfavourable winds. On the morning of the 9th of April, we had advanced the farthest in our power to the westward, being then 3 degrees to the west of Cape Deseada, the west part of the Straits of Magellan; but next evening we found ourselves 3 degrees 52 minutes east of that position, and were still hourly losing ground. It was with much concern I saw how hopeless, and even unjustifiable it was, to persist any longer in attempting a passage this way to the Society Islands. The season was now too far advanced for us to expect more favourable winds or weather, and we had sufficiently experienced the impossibility of beating round against the wind, or of advancing at all without the help of a fair wind, for which there was little reason to hope. On the other hand, the prevalence of the westerly winds in high southern latitudes left me no reason to doubt of making a quick passage to the Cape of Good Hope, and thence to the eastward round New Holland. Having maturely considered all circumstances, I determined to deviate from my instructions, and to bear away for the Cape of Good Hope; and at five o'clock on the evening of the 22d, the wind then blowing strong at west, I ordered the helm to be put a-weather, to the great joy of every person on board. With the wind now in our favour, we reached the Cape of Good Hope on the 24th of May, where we remained thirty-eight days, taking in various kinds of stores and refreshments. Setting sail from the Cape, we made straight for Van Diemen's Land, which we reached on the 20th of August 1788. We remained here a good many days, employed in planting some of the fruit-trees which we had brought with us from the Cape of Good Hope, in case they might thrive and be of use to the future inhabitants of the island, whoever these might be; we also tried, but without effect, to have some intercourse with the natives, who had already once or twice received visits from European voyagers. Although they came down one day in crowds to the beach, cackling like geese, and we made signs to them, and also gave them presents, we could not bring them to familiarity. The colour of these natives of Van Diemen's Land, as Captain Cook remarks, is a dull black; their skin is scarified about their shoulders and breast. They were of a middle stature, or rather below it. One of them was distinguished by his body being coloured with red ochre; but all the others were painted black, with a kind of soot, which was laid on so thick over their faces and shoulders, that it is difficult to say what they were like. They ran very nimbly over the rocks, had a very quick sight, and caught the small beads and nails which I threw to them with great dexterity. They talked to us sitting on their heels, with their knees close into their armpits, and were perfectly naked.

Leaving Van Diemen's Land, we steered east-south-east, passing to the southward of New Zealand, and making for the principal object of our destination, Otaheite, which we saw on the 25th of October, having, during our passage of fifty-two days from Van Diemen's Land, met with nothing deserving particular notice. One of our seamen had died on the 9th of an asthmatic complaint; the rest were well. On the 26th of October, at four o'clock in the morning, we brought to till daylight, when we saw Point Venus bearing south-west by west, distant about four leagues. As we drew near, a great number of canoes came off to us.

The ship being anchored, Sunday the 26th, our number of visitors continued to increase; but as yet we saw no person that we could recollect to have been of much consequence. Some inferior chiefs made me presents of a few hogs, and I made them presents in return. We were supplied with cocoa-nuts in great abundance, but bread-fruit was scarce. Many inquiries were made after Captain Cook, Sir Joseph Banks, and many of their former friends. They said a ship had been here, from which they had learnt that Captain Cook was dead; but the circumstances of his death they did not appear to be acquainted with, and I had given particular directions to my officers and ship's company that they should not be mentioned. Otoo, who was the chief of Matavai when Captain Cook was here the last time, was absent at another part of the island; they told me messengers were sent to inform W of our arrival, and that he was expected to return soon.

« ForrigeFortsæt »