Billeder på siden
[ocr errors]

so lost

cence ?


sight !”

Mock me, and dazzle my dark mysteries ? WHITE's NEW INVENTED HORIZON. “ Art thou not Lucifer ? he to whom the droves

MR EDITOR, Of stars that gild the morn in charge were It is well known, that, at sea, when

given ? The nimblest of the lightning-winged loves, the natural horizon is obscured by The fairest and the first-born smile of thick or foggy weather, the sun's meria heaven ?

dian altitude, for ascertaining the lati

tude of the ship's place, cannot be obAh wretch! what boots thee to cast back served ; consequently, the navigator thy eyes

has nothing to depend on, until noon Where dawning Hope no beam of comfort next day, to regulate his future pro

shews ? While the reflection of thy forepast joys

ceedings, except his dead reckoning. Renders thee double to thy present woes !.

In the English Channel, the North Rather make up to thy new miseries,

Sea, the Banks of Newfoundland, the And meet the mischief that upon thee grows. Coast of America, and many other If Hell must mourn, Heaven sure shall places of the world, the fogs are often sympathise :

so thick, and of such long continuance, What force cannot effect, fraud shall devise. as to render it impossible to ascertain “ And yet whose force fear 1?-Have I the true position of the ship, for want

of the latitude. Under such circumMyself ?-my strength too, with my inno- stances, although the sun is seen very Come, try who dares, Heaven, Earth, what distinctly, and felt very powerfully, e'er dost boast

there is no other alternative but to A borrowed being, make thy bold defence ! keep the ship at sea : for no man in Come thy CREATOR too !-what though it his senses will run for a port, in such

weather, without being pretty certain Me yet another fall? We'd tryourstrengths. of his latitude. Heaven saw us struggle once; as brave a To obviate these hitherto insurfight

mountable obstacles, Mr Gavin White, Earth now should see, and tremble at the

grocer in Kinross, has, by a wonderful Thus spoke th' impatient prince, and effort of uncultivated genius, invented

a very simple apparatus,-with which, His foul hags rais’d their heads, and clapp'd when fixed, by an easy process, to the their hands,

common quadrant, an artificial horizon And all the Powers of Hell, in full applause, can thereby be obtained, and the sun's Flourish'd their snakes, and tossd their meridian altitude observed, the same flaming brands.

as if ascertained with a quadrant and “ I thank you all, but one must single made use of on board a ship at sea.

natural horizon, in the common way

This apparatus is, at present, made Thrice howl'd the caves of night, and

so as to screw on to my brass sextant, thrice the sound,

with which I have made many obserThund'ring upon the banks of those black vations, not only for determining the lakes,

latitude, but also for ascertaining the Rung through the hollow vaults of Hell true apparent time ; which, from the

profound : At last her listning ears the noice o'ertakes, accuracy of the whole, enables me to She lifts her sooty lamps, and looking round, pronounce the invention one of very A general hiss from the whole tire of snakes great importance to science and naviRebounding, through Hell's inmost caverns gation.

A large series of observations have In answer to her formidable name! been made with it, both on shore and

on board the Ramillies, now in Leith Scarce to this monster could the shady King Roads, which have been forwarded The horrid sum of his intentions tell :

to some gentlemen, eminently distinBut she (swift as the momentary wing guished for scientific knowledge and Of lightning, or the words he spoke) left acquirements, in this city; who, with

She rose, and with her to our world did

a very laudable zeal for the promotion bring

of science, have interested themselves Pale proof of her fell presence.

in such a manner, as, it is hoped, will

ultimately prove highly beneficial both Heaven saw her rise, and saw Hell in the to the invention and inventor. sight.

W. Bain, Master, Royal Navy. Edinburgh, May 6th 1817.

made a pause.



[ocr errors]


TALES AND ANECDOTES OF THE ber of a body so generally respectable

as our Scottish Clergy, and who, at No II.

the same time, maintains a fair worldly

character ; but in a general discussion The wedding-day at length arrived; -in any thing that relates to the comand as the bridegroom had charged mon weal of mankind; all such inferior us to be there at an early hour, we set considerations must be laid aside. And out on horseback, immediately after the more I consider the simplicity of breakfast, for the remote hamlet of the people of whom I am now writing Stridekirtin. We found no regular —the scenes among which they have path, but our way lay through a coun- been bred—and their lonely and setry which it is impossible to view with- questered habits of life, where the out soothing emotions. The streams workings and phenomena of nature are numerous, clear as crystal, and alone appear to attract the eye or enwind along the glens in many fantas- gage the attention,--the more I am tic and irregular curves. The mouna convinced that the temperament of tains are green to the tops, very high, their minds would naturally dispose and form many beautiful soft and them to devotional feelings. If they shaded outlines. They are, besides, were but taught to read their Bibles, literally speckled with snowy flocks, and only saw uniformly in the miwhich, as we passed, were feeding or nisters of religion that sanctity of charesting with such appearance of un racter by which the profession ought disturbed repose, that the heart na ever to be distinguished, these people turally found itself an involuntary would naturally be such as every wellsharer in the pastoral tranquillity that wisher to the human race would depervaded all around.

sire a scattered peasantry to be. But My good friend, Mr Grumple, could when the most decided variance begive me no information regarding the tween example and precept is forced names of the romantic glens and on their observation, what should we, mountains that came within our view; or what can we, expect? Men must he, however, knew who were the pro- see, hear, feel, and judge accordingly. prietors of the land, who the tenants, And certainly in no other instance is a what rent and stipend each of them patron so responsible to his sovereign, paid, and whose teinds were unex his country, and his God, as in the hausted; this seemed to be the sum choice he makes of spiritual pastors. and substance of his knowledge con

These were some of the reflections cerning the life, character, and man that occupied my mind as I traversed ners, of his rural parishioners, save that this beautiful pastoral country with he could sometimes adduce circum- its morose teacher, and from these I stantial evidence that such and such was at length happily aroused by the farmers had made money of their land, appearance of the cottage, or shepand that others had made very little herd's steading, to which we were

bound. It was situated in a little This district, over which he presides valley in the bottom of a wild glen, or in an ecclesiastical capacity, forms an hope, as it is there called. It stood extensive portion of the Arcadia of all alone; but besides the dwellingBritain. It was likewise, in some late house, there was a little byre that held ages, noted for its zeal in the duties of the two cows and their young, -a religion, as well as for a thirst after good stack of hay, another of peats, the acquirement of knowledge con a sheep-house, and two homely garcerning its doctrines; but under the dens; and the place had altogether 'tuition of such a pastor as my relative something of a snug, comfortable apappears to be, it is no wonder that pearance. Though this is only an inpractical religion should be losing dividual picture, I am told it may be ground from year to year, and scepti- viewed as a general one of almost every cism, the natural consequence of laxity shepherd's dwelling in the south in religious duties, gaining ground in of Scotland ; and it is only such picproportion.

tures that, in the course of these tales, It may be deemed, perhaps, rather I mean to present to the public. indecorous, to indulge in such reflec A number of the young shepherds tions respecting any individual who and country-lasses had already arrived, has the honour to be ranked as a mem- impatient for the approaching wed.

or none.

[ocr errors]

ding; others were coming down the two of them had actually leapt twengreen hills in mixed parties all around, ty-two feet, on a level plain, at one leading one another, and skipping with bound. This may appear extraordithe agility of lambs. They were all nary to those who never witnessed walking barefooted and barelegged, such an exercise, but it is a fact of male and female—the men were dresse which I can adduce sufficient proof. ed much in the ordinary way, only that Being delighted as well as astonishthe texture of their clothes was some ed at seeing those feats of agility, I what coarse, and the women had black took Peter aside, and asked him if I beavers, white gowns, and “ green might offer prizes for some other excoats kilted to the knee.” When they ercises. “ Hout na," said Peter ; came near the house they went into ye'll affront them; let them just little sequestered hollows, the men alane ; they hae eneuch o' incitement and women apart, “ pat on their hose e'now, an' rather owre muckle atween an' shoon, and made themsels a' trig you an' me; forbye the brag o the an' witching,” and then came and thing—as lang as the lasses stand and joined the group with a joy that could look at them, they'll ply atween death not be restrained by walking,—they an' life.” What Peter said was true, run to mix with their youthful asso- —instead of getting weary of their ciates.

sports, their ardour seemed to increase; Still as they arrived, we saw, on our and always as soon as the superiority approach, that they drew up in two of any individual in one particular exrows on the green, and soon found ercise was manifest, another was in that it was a contest at leaping. The stantly resorted to; so that ere long shepherds were stripped to the shirt there was one party engaged in wrestand drawers, and exerting themselves ling, one in throwing the stone, and in turn with all their might, while another at hop-step-and-leap, all at their sweethearts and sisters were look one and the same time. ing on with no small share of interest. This last seems to be rather the fa.

We received a kind and hospitable vourite amusement. It consists of welcome from honest Peter and his three succeeding bounds, all with the father, who was a sagacious-looking same race; and as the exertion is old carle, with a broad bonnet and greater, and of longer continuance, gray locks; but the contest on the they can judge with more precision green still continuing, I went and the exact capability of the several com joined the circle, delighted to see a petitors. I measured the ground, and pastime so appropriate to the shep- found the greatest distance effected in herd's life. I was utterly astonished this way to be forty-six feet. I am at the agility which the fellows dise informed, that whenever two or three played.

young shepherds are gathered together, They took a short race of about at fold or bught, moor or market, at twelve or fourteen paces, which they all times and seasons, Sunday's excepta denominated the ramrace, and then ed, one or more of these athletic exerrose from the footing-place with such cises is uniformly resorted to; and a bound as if they had been going to certainly, in a class where hardiness mount and fly into the air. The crook- and agility are so requisite, they can ed guise in which they flew shewed never be too much encouraged. great art—the knees were doubled up But now all these favourite sports ward—the body bent forward and were terminated at once by a loud cry the head thrown somewhat back; so of “ Hurra! the broose ! the broose !'' that they alighted on their heels with Not knowing what the broose meant, the greatest ease and safety, their joints I looked all around with great precibeing loosened in such a manner that pitation, but for some time could see not one of them was straight. If they nothing but hills. At length, howfell backward on the ground, the leap ever, by marking the direction in was not accounted fair. Several of the which the rest looked, I perceived, at antagonists took the ramrace with a a considerable distance down the glen, staff in their hand, which they left at five horsemen coming at full speed on the footing-place as they rose. This a determined race, although on such a I thought unfair, but none of their op- road, as I believe, a race was never beponents objected to the custom. I fore contested. It was that by which measured the distance, and found that we had lately come, and the only one

[ocr errors]

that led to the house from all the four gain—whipped on furiously, and would quarters of the world. For some time soon have overhied his pedestrian adit crossed “ the crooks of the burn,” versary; but the shepherds are bad as they called them; that is, it kept horsemen, and, moreover, Jock’s horse, straight up the bottom of the glen, which belonged to Gideon of Kirkand crossed the burn at every turning. hope, was unacquainted with the Of course every time that the group sheep-drains, and terrified at them crossed this stream, they were for a consequently, by making a sudden jerk moment involved in a cloud of spray backwards when he should have leapt that almost hid them from view, and across one of them, and when Jock the frequent recurrence of this render- supposed that he was just going to ed the effect highly comic.

do so, he threw his rider a second Still, however, they kept apparently time. The shouts of laughter were close together, till at length the path again renewed, and every one was left the bottom of the narrow valley, calling out, 66 Now for the mell! and came round the sloping base of a Now for the mell! Deil tak the hindhill that was all interspersed with most now !These sounds reached drains and small irregularities of sur Jock's ears; he lost no time in makface; this producing no abatement of ing a last effort, but flew at his horse exertion or speed; horses and men again-remounted him-and, by urgwere soon foundering, plunging, and ing him to a desperate effort, actually tumbling about in all directions. If got a-head of his adversary just when this was amusing to view, it was still within ten yards of the door, and thus more so to hear the observations of the escaped the disgrace of winning the delighted group that stood round me mell. and beheld it. Ha, ha, ha! yon I was afterwards told, that in former der's ane aff! Gude faith! yon's Jock ages it was the custom on the Border, o'the Meer-Cleuch; he has gotten when the victor in the race was prean ill-faur’d flaip.-- Holloa ! yonder sented with the prize of honour, the gaes another, down through a lair to one who came in last was, at the same the een-holes ! Weel done, Aedie o' time, presented with a mallet or large Aberlosk! Hie till him, Tousy, outher wooden hammer, called a mell in the now or never ! Lay on, ye deevil

, an' dialect of the country, and that then hing by the mane! Hurray!”

the rest of the competitors stood in The women were by this time need to be near at hand, and instantly screaming, and the men literally jump- to force the mell from him, else he ing and clapping their hands for joy was at liberty to knock as many of at the deray that was going on; and them down with it as he could. The there was one little elderly-looking mell has now, for many years, been man whom I could not help noting; only a nominal prize; but there is he had fallen down on the ground in often more sport about the gaining of a convulsion of laughter, and was spur

it than the principal one. ring and laying on it with both hands another occurrence which added greatand feet. One, whom they denomi ly to the animation of this, which I nated Davie Scott o’the Ramseycleuch had not time before fully to relate. burn, amid the bay of dogs and the About the time when the two unforshouts of men and women, got first to tunate wights were unhorsed in the the bridegroom's door, and of course bog, those who still kept on were met was acknowledged to have won the and attacked, open mouth, by at least broose ; but the attention was soon twenty frolicsome collies, that seemed wholly turned from him to those be fully as intent on sport as their mashind. The man whose horse had sunk ters. These bit the hind-legs of the in the bog, perceiving that all chance horses, snapped at their noses, and of extricating it again on the instant raised such an outrage of barking, that was out of the question, lost not a mo the poor animals, forespent as they ment, but sprung to his feet-threw were, were constrained to lay themoff his clothes, hat, and shoes, all at selves out almost beyond power. Nor one brush-and ran towards the goal did the fray cease when the race was with all his might. Jock o' the Meer won. Encouraged by the noise and Cleuch, who was still a good way far

clamour which then arose about the ther back, and crippled besides with gaining of the mell, the staunch collies his fall, perceiving this, mounted a continued the attack, and hunted the *9L. I.


There was

racers round and round the houses Aedie,” said John, " what hae ye with great speed, while the horses made o' our young friend ?"-"Ou! were aïl the time wheeling and fling- she's safe eneuch,” returned he; “ the ing most furiously, and their riders, best-man and John the elder are wi' in desperation, vociferating and cursing her.” their assailants.

On looking round the corner of the All the guests now crowded toge- house, we now perceived that the bride ther, and much humour and blunt wit and her two attendants were close at passed about the gaining of the broose. hand. They came at a quick canter. Each of the competitors had his diffi- She managed her horse well, kept her culties and cross accidents to relate; saddle with great ease, and seemed and each affirmed, that if it had not an elegant sprightly girl, of twentybeen such and such hindrances, he four or thereabouts. Every cap was would have gained the broose to a cer- instantly waved in the air, and the tainty. Davie Scott o' the Ramsey- bride was saluted with three hearty cleuch-burn, however, assured them, cheers. Old John, well aware of what that “he was aye hauding in his yaud it behoved him to do, threw off his wi' the left hand, and gin he had liket broad bonnet, and took the bride reto gie her out her head, she wad hae spectfully from her horse-kissed and gallopit amaist a third faster.”—“That welcomed her home. " Ye're welmay be,” said Aedie o' Aberlosk, “ but come hame till us, Jeany, my bonny I hae come better on than I expectit woman," said he; “may God bless wi' my Cameronian naig. I never saw ye, an' mak ye just as good an' as hap. him streek himsel sae afore-1 dare say py as I wish ye.” It was a beautiful he thought that Davie was auld Cla- and affecting sight, to see him leading vers mounted on Hornie. Poor fallow !" her toward the home that was now continued he, patting him, “ he has a to be her own. He held her hand good deal o' anti-prelatic dourness in in both his—the wind waved his long him; but I see he has some spirit, for gray locks-his features were lengtha' that. I bought him for a powney,

ened considerably the wrong way, and but he's turned out a beast.”

I could perceive a tear glistening on I next overheard one proposing to

his furrowed cheek. the man who left his horse, and ex All seemed to know exactly the parts erted himself so manfully on foot, to they had to act; but every thing came go and pull his horse out of the quag on me like magic, and quite by surmire. Na, na," said he, “ let him prise. The bride now stopped short stick yonder a while, to learn him on the threshold, while the old man mair sense than to gang intill an open broke a triangular cake of short-bread well-ee and gar ane get a mell. I saw over her head, the pieces of which he the gate I was gawn, but I couldna threw about



young people. swee him aff; sae I just thought o' These scrambled for them with great Jenny Blythe, and plunged in. I violenee and eagerness; and indeed kend weel something was to happen, they seemed always to be most in their for I met her first this morning, the element when any thing that required ill-hued carlin : but I had need to strength or activity was presented. For haud my tongue !-Gudeman, let us my part, I could not comprehend what see a drap whisky.” He was presented the sudden convulsion meant, (for in

" Come, here's Jenny a moment the crowd was moving like Blythe,” said Andrew, and drank it a whirlpool, and tumbling over one off. -" I wad be nae the waur o’a wee another in half dozens) till a little girl, drap too,” said Aberlosk, taking a glass escaping from the vortex, informed me of whisky in his hand, and looking that they war battling wha first to stedfastly through it; “I think I see

“I think I see get a haud o' the bride's bunn.” I was Jock the elder here,” said he ; “ ay, still in the dark, till at length I saw it's just him-come, here's the five the successful candidates presenting kirks o Eskdale." He drank it off their favourites with small pieces of “Gudeman, that's naething but a this mystical cake. One beautiful maid, Tam-Park of a glass : if ye'll fill it with light locks, blue eyes, and cheeks again, I'll gie a toast ye never heard like the vernal rose, came nimbly up afore. This is Builey's Dictionary," to me, called me familiarly by my said Aedie, and drank it off again. naine, looked at me with perfect seri

“But, when a' your daffin's owre, ousness, and without even a smile on

with a glass

« ForrigeFortsæt »