Puslapio vaizdai

he heard in Chimari ; even from the mountains of tunities? And who, in Pollok's powerful but gloomy Greece he was carried back to Morven and poem, may not detect the raven hue which a sterile

“Lochnagar, with Ida, looked o'er Troy." moorland scenery had left upon his mind ? Has Hence the severe Dante-like, monumental, moun. not, again, the glad landscape of the Howe of tainous cast of his better poetry; for we firmly the Mearns, and the prospect from the surmountbelieve that the scenery of one's youth gives a ing Hill of Garvock, left a pleasing trace upon the permanent bias and colouring to the genius, the mild pages of Beattie's Minstrel ? Did not Coila taste, and the style, i. e., if there be an intellect colour the genial soul of its poet? Has not the to receive an impulse, or a taste to catch a tone. scenery of " mino own romantic town” made much Many, it is true, bred in cities, or amid common of the prose and poetry of Sir Walter Scott what scenery, make up for the lack by early travel ; so it is ? So, is it mere fancy which traces the stream did Milton, Coleridge, Wilson, &c. But who of Byron's poetry in its light and its darkness, its may not gather, from the tame tone of Cowper's bitterness and its brilliance, to this smitten rock landscapes, that he had never enjoyed such oppor- in the wilderness—to the cliffs of Lochnagar?


THE TWEED-Continued.


Op all the burghs in Scotland, we know of no Of these, perhaps, the most interesting of the one, possessing a character and an appearance whole, will be found to be that of Dearn or Darnso entirely and exclusively its own, as Peebles. hall, built some time previous to the year 1715 Altogether different from the majority of such | by Sir Alexander Murray of Blackbarony, Bartowns, that generally look like paltry portions onet. This Sir Alexander was a character of of the suburbs of the capital which have ram- great magnificence. The site of the old house is bled forth into the country, Peebles has a cer- on the slope of a narrow ravine, with its side to tain indescribable air of rurality hanging over the rill at the bottom. A grand avenue of limes it, which is quite refreshing to the poor wight and pines led from the village of Athelstone up who may escape thither, for a brief space, after to the mansion, its upper extremity being cut out having been long “in populous city pent.” It of the bank. But alas! the mound with most of is impossible for a brother of the angle to ap- the limes and pines are now gone. proach it, without thinking of the rod and reel The magnificence of Sir Alexander, who was and wicker basket; and yet we are not quite sure the last of that line of the Murrays of Blackbarony, that many very great angling feats have been was not to be matched. He had travelled much accomplished here, except by the famous Piper abroad, and, especially, he had been for some time of Peebles, mentioned by Sir Walter Scott; yet it at the Court of Lisbon; and so it was, that he felt & certainly possesses all the apparent advantages desire to give to his countrymen some taste of the that an angler could desire. We have always been grandeur which he had witnessed in foreign parts, filled with the idea, that a certain innocent sim- and accordingly, when he had to give an enterplicity seems to hover over it, the purity of which tainment, he, in addition to his own servants, is not impaired by any considerable spirit of collected together all his tenants and villagers, manufacture; whilst at the same time, no sha- whose services he could command, and putting dow of rusticity seems to fall upon it—but on them into suits of livery which he kept for the the contrary, the ghost of the aristocratic taste purpose, and having well drilled them to hold up and manners of the Vieille Court, seems to stalk their heads and to look big, he planted them in along its thinly peopled streets, and to loiter two rows, one on each side of the avenue, all the about its quaint looking houses and gardens, and way from the public road of the village of Athelthe frequent Gothic ruins of its religious edifices, stone to the door of the mansion, the back of each as if the embodied influences which descended man being placed opposite to the trunk of a lime or a on it in those ages long gone by, when our kings pine-tree so that, in the event of rain falling, their delighted to sojourn here, were still pleased sadly clothes should be in some degree saved from the to wander about among the scenes of its former wet, by the overhanging foliage. There these merriment and festivity.

figures stood stiff and motionless and silent, inThe approach to Peebles from the north, or spiring awe into the hearts of the astounded Edinburgh direction, becomes very pretty, as the guests who approached the house between them. road falls into, and runs down the glen of the On their arrival, they were ushered, by the real Athelstoun or Eddlestone Water, an important domestics of the Baronet's establishment, into the tributary of the Tweed, as it is, itself, fed by a drawing-room, and after a sufficient time had great many small streams. There are a good many elapsed for the whole company to assemble, u pretty residences along its banks, and cultivation strange, scraping, shuffling sort of noise was and planting have been carried to a great extent. heard from the passage, which grew louder as it Among these may be mentioned Portmore, Harcus, advanced, until the door was thrown open, and Darnhall, Cringletie, Chapelhill, Rosetta, Venlaw. the great Blackbarony himself entered the apart

Full gay,

ment, dressed out with all the grandeur of a remarkable in its turn for its allusion to that of sovereign Prince, and rubbing and shufiling his “Peblis to the play." feet on the floor as he proceeded up the room, “ W'es nevir in Scotland, hard nor sene much to the astonishment of his guests, who

Sic dansing nor deray,

Nouthir at Falkland on the Grene, could in no way account for a mode of walking

Nor Pebillis at the Play, which had neither elegance nor dignity in it. At As wes of wowaris, as I wene, length, however, it came out, that the then King

At Christis' Kirk on ane day:

Thair came our Kitties, weshen clene, of Portugal was afflicted with a weakness in his

In thair new kirtillis of gray, legs, which disabled him from raising his feet from the ground, and compelled him to shuffle

At Christis' Kirk of the Grene that day.” along the floor in this way; and, that Sir

On his return from his long imprisonment in Alexander had adopted this practice, to show his England, James was struck with the great deCourtly manners, and his intimacy with the Por- ficiency which his subjects exhibited, in comtuguese Monarch.— This water of Eddlestone parison with the English, in the use of archery. has in its vicinity many remains of ancient camps, He did every thing to amend this evil, by the as well as of Druidical worship. The old castle publication of acts for the encouragement of its of Shieldgreen at the head of the Soonhope-Burn, practice, by threatening penalties on the one hand, to the eastward of Winkstone, is a lofty ruin of a and offering prizes on the other, and calling ridiplace, which seems to have been of some considera- cule to his aid, he is supposed to have written this tion in the olden time. Heathpool was an ancient poem, which may be considered throughout, as a property of the Lauder family.

satire upon the awkwardness of the Scottish As it approaches the Tweed, the Athelstone peasantry in the management of the bow. А divides the town of Peebles into two parts.-

silver arrow was long shot for annually here, each The valley of the Tweed here expands into a winner having the right to attach his silver medal large and fertile plain, where the agriculture is to it, recording his triumph. And this is still excellent, the hedges trimly kept, and where preserved in the possession of the Magistrates. young, thriving, and well-grown plantations are Archery throve considerably under this patriotic rising in all directions, especially on the slopes monarch, but after his murder, in 1437, it again and declivities of the hills. The late father and declined, and this the more so, owing to the disbrother of the present Sir Adam Hay, Bart., covery and use of gunpowder, and we find that largely contributed to the enrichment and em- his successor, James the II., in a statute in 1557, bellishment of the country in this way. This prohibited the amusements of golf and football, extensive stretch of plain, to the south, is con- that these sports might not interfere with the nected with the town by a bridge of five arches, practice of the hackbut, arquebuss, and matchwhich is so ancient, that the history of its erec- lock, which were now substituted at the Waipontion is altogether lost. The site of the town is schawings, for the bow and arrow. We believe, remarkably healthy, and it is a good deal fre- however, that the Royal Company of archers of quented by families of the better sort, for the the Queen's Body Guard for Scotland, annually education of their children.

repair to Peebles,' to shoot for the prize. On the But we have most delight in going back to its opposite side of the river, was the King's moor, olden time, when, during many reigns, it was a

where the ancient tournaments were held, and favourite place of recreative retreat for our where the horse-races, and all the other games Scottish monarchs. Antiquaries have been so belonging to “Peblis to the Play,"took place, and busy, that they seem to have upset the claim of our there the people were wont to be assembled down King James the 1st., to the authorship of the to a very late period, for the weaponschawings ancient poem, called “ • Peblis to the Play ;” and annually, in the months of June and October. if so, then “ Christis Kirk of the Grene,” must An accurate account was taken of the appearance necessarily go with it. And yet, the mere cir- of each of the Barons, with the number of their cumstance that the hospital of St. Leonard's, followers, and the state of their horses and arms : founded a little way down the Tweed, for infirm and one of these documents, dated the 15th June, and indigent persons, was given, in 1427, by that 1627, which is still preserved, is extremely curious; monarch to his confessor, would seem to sup- we give one entry only, as a sample of the rest, port the truth of the legend that the king was

“Sir Archibald Murray, of Darnhall, well horsed, much attached to this place as a residence, as

with a callet, accompanied with forty-two horsewell as that he, well known to be a poet, was in men, with lances and swords, ten jacks and steel reality the author of both the poems we have men- bonnetts, within the parishes of Kilbucko and tioned.

Eddleston." “At Beltane, quhen, ilk bodie bownis,

In the 13th year of the reign of Alexander III., To Peblis to the Play ;

a very magnificent, ancient, stone cross, was dug To heir the singin and the soundis,

up at Peebles; beside it were found the relics of a The solace, suth to say; Be firth and forest furth the found;

human body, contained within a shrine, and supThay graythit tham full gay;

posed to be those of St. Nicholas; and, in conseGod wait that wald, thay do that stound, For it was their feist day,

quence of this discovery, the King built a stately thay said,

Church, in honour of God and the Holy Cross, of Peblis to the Play."

From this time downwards, the Sovereigns of The poem of “ Christis Kirk of the Grene,” is Scotland, were all, more or less, in the habit of


resorting to Peebles for retirement, for hunt- | wards from Peebles, we find its level banks ening, and for other rural amusements ; as well as riched with the plantations, parks, and pleasure in their way to and from Ettrick Forest. And grounds of Kerrfield on the left, and King's the names of particular places, still existing, meadows on the right. Hayston, the more ancient prove the importance of Peebles as a seat of re- seat of the Hays, occupies a picturesque nook at ligion, as well as having been that of royalty ; some distance to the southward, towards the foot for we have the King's meadows, the Dean's house, of the hills, which here send down several small the Virgin inns, the Usher's wind, the King's feeders to the Tweed. The old riven Peel Tower house, the King's orchards, and above all, the of Horsburgh occupies a green knoll on the left Cuinzee nook, or the place where a mint must bank, it is the ancient seat of a very old family, have stood. Buchanan, in his history of Scot- the Horsburghs of that ilk. It is an extremely land, tells us, that Lord Darnley retired to Peebles picturesque object to look at, and the view from with his attendants, to avoid the fury of the it is very beautiful. On the right bank, the Queen's jealousy and the courtiers' envy. And he woods of Kailzie hang on the slope of the rising unconsciously proves to us the high state of civiliza- grounds, and give evidence of a considerable extion to which the town had at that time reached, penditure both of taste and of money. Again, by telling us, that it was so full of expert thieves before reaching the little watering place of Innerthat King Henry was speedily obliged to retire leithen, which the public, we believe, without from it. As we do not profess, in following out much justice or reason, have chosen to identify our present plan, to give an account of all the with the fictitious St. Ronans, we have the place towns which may be found on the banks of the of Glen Ormiston on the left bank, and Cardrona rivers, we are describing, we should not have

the right. dwelt so long upon Peebles, but for the singular The Leithen is a pretty considerable stream, air of decayed royalty that hangs over it, and and, rising in the northern heights which bound which so strangely blends with its perfect sim- the county of Edinburgh, it has a fine run of plicity and rurality.

above six miles, through the parish of the same Before quitting Peebles, we must not fail to name, in a pretty narrow glen between pastoral notice a short but romantic legend connected hills, till it joins the Tweed. The height of the with it which, we believe, owes its preservation hills is considerable, that of Windlestraw Law is to Sir Walter Scott. A daughter of the proud 2,295 feet. The Leithen is a fine trouting river, Earl of March, then the Lord of Neidpath castle, and the village of Innerleithen is a great place having accidentally met with a son of the Laird of resort for anglers, where they may command of Tushielaw, in Ettrick Forest, a strong mutual the choice of that river, or the Quair, or the passion arose between them ; a stop was put to Tweed. But, indeed, the smallest burns among their alliance by the parents of the lady, who the hills connected with the Tweed, will be found thought that the match by no means befitted her to afford panniers full of fine trout to the skilful quality. Filled with despair, the young man went angler who knows when to take their streams at abroad, and the result of his absence was, that the proper time, and in the right condition; and the affliction of the young lady produced a deep there can be few pleasures, of the simple kind, consumption. The fond but foolish father, in which can excel the delight of wandering alone the hope of saving his daughter's life, at last through these solitary wildernesses of heathsignified his wishes to the family of Tushielaw, guided by the thread of the little stream only, that the young man might be recalled, and that and, dropping, as you move onwards, a shortened his union with his daughter should be solemnized, line over its banks, finding yourself ever and anon so soon as the lady's convalescence should admit yoked with a fish, that compels you, in prudence, of it. The effeet upon the lady's health seemed to give him somewhat of his own way, and a little to be magical, but alas ! it was but in appearance indulgence in the music of the reel, before you only. Eager to catch the first glimpse of her begin to think of drawing him gently near you, lover on the day he was expected, she ordered in order to lay your hands upon him. How agreethat she should be carried down from Neidpath ably does the lid of your willow basket atter its to a house in Peebles, which belonged to the peculiar gently creaking sound, in welcome to the family, and there, laid at her ease on cushions on panting captive, as you open it to insert him a balcony, she sat expecting him. So acute among those who have been placed there before was her sense of hearing, that she distinguished him; and all this occurs among the solitude of his horse's footsteps at an incredible distance. Nature--the bleat of a lamb from the hill-side, or The young man came riding briskly on, burning the hum of a bee from a heather bell, being all with eagerness to be in his lady's arms; and so in- that may tell of the vicinity of animal life. There tent was he on this object, and so filled with this are regular games held at Innerleithen under one engrossing thought, that he never cast an eye the superintendance of the St. Ronan's Club, and, on the balcony, or if he did, it was utterly to dis- amongst other prizes, I believe, one is given for regard a form and face which fell disease had competition among the anglers for the best basketnow rendered difficult to recognize. On he rode, ful of trout. The mineral spring here is much gaily and quickly to Neidpath. The lady, alas! resorted to, and, consequently, the village itself unable to support the shock, fell back in the arms has had some good houses added to it. Its situaof her attendants, and died without a struggle. tion at the narrow mouth of the glen is extremely

Following the gentle course of the Tweed down-pleasing and sequestered.

We must now cross the Tweed to its right Unfortunately, neither poet nor historian, that bank, in order to investigate the scene

we wot of, has left us the smallest clue to what the

issue of this love affair really was, and under these "Where Quair, wild wimpling 'mang the flowers, Rups down yon wooded glen, lassie."

circumstances, it appears to us to hold out strong

temptation to the fiction-monger to work out from This river and its tributaries and glens are it his own romantic tale of mingled distress and extremely beautiful, and, in many places, very happiness. wild. The run of the Quair itself is about three or

The ancient house of Traquair itself forms & four miles. It has its source in Glendean's Banks, very important and striking feature in the angle which form a chasm about half a mile in length, between the two streams, and in the midst of the and from two hundred to three hundred feet in combined scenery of the Quair and the Tweed. height. Its precipices are remarkable for pro- It raises its venerable head out of the fine old ducing falcons of a superior flight and courage. timber in which it is embosomed, and looks There are several quiet, rural, and romantic soli- sternly over the vale, like a battle-seamed wartudes to be found here, and we may particularly rior, contented to enjoy his repose, but quite notice Glen, the property of Mr. Allan above ready to be roused up to action in the event which yawns the fearful chasm of Gams-cleugh. of circumstances demanding it. The building, But that which gives most interest to the scenery indeed, when viewed at a distance, appears here is its association with “ the Bush aboon Tra- to be more important than it really is when apquair,” which indeed has, in reality, now dwindled proached ; for then it is found to be considerably to a comparatively insignificant object, being re- raised by an artificial terrace, so that the height duced to a few lonely looking birch trees standing of absolute masonry is not so great as might at in a thin clump, at a considerable height on the first sight be imagined, and yet there is enough face of the hill, Doubtless, the grove was thicker in reality to warrant the description in a note on and more shady at least, if it was not more ex- Dr. Pennecuik, which says, Traquair House, tensive, at the time when young Murray of Philip- the seat of the noble Earl of that name, is a large haugh, having crossed the intervening mountain- and ancient building, on the banks of Tweed and wilds, first met at this place, with the lovely Lady Quair. The venerable, yet elegant appearance Margaret Stewart, a daughter of the house of of this house, or rather palace, as Dr. Pennecuik Traquair, and became deeply enamoured of her. terms it, has not less the air of royal grandeur, If the verses that are wedded to the ancient than the extensive policy and gardens have of melody are in any way truly descriptive of the taste and judgment. It is not particularly known sentiments of the parties, it would appear that at what time, or by whom, the oldest part of this the lady must have received the gallant young noble structure was built. Part of it is of very Philiphaugh's addresses with gracious smiles at remote antiquity, built on the banks of the Tweed, first, so as to fill his bosom with the best hopes, easily defensible from that side, and might posbut whether he had presumed rather too much in sibly, in the days of hostility, be properly guarded this his first interview, or that the lady was on the other. It was in the form of a tower." naturally a flirt, must be matter of mere con- Chambers tells us that “the great additions to jecture.

the ancient tower, which caused the house to as"Hear me, ye nymphs and every swain,

sume its present unfortress-like aspect, were made I'll tell how Peggy grieves me;

in the reign of Charles I., by John Earl of TraThough thus I languish and complain,

quair, Lord High Treasurer of Scotland under Alas, she ne'er believes me. My vows and sighs, like silent air,

that monarch.” We must say that we felt it to Unheeded, never move her;

be a place replete with interest.

Even the parThe bonny Bush aboon Traquair,

tial symptoms of disorder or decay, which we obWas where I first did love her,

served both within and without doors, heightened That day she smiled and made me glad,

the effect of this. The policy, as the note we No maid seemed ever kinder; I thought myself the luckiest lad,

have already quoted, more Scotico designates the So sweetly there to find her.

pleasure grounds, has grown up very much into a I tried to soothe my amorous flame,

wilderness, amongst which there are some of the In words that I thought tender; If more there passed, I'm not to blame,

finest yews anywhere to be seen.

When we I meant not to offend her.

visited the place, we had the good fortune to fall

in with Lord Traquair's chaplain, the earl himself Yet now she scornful flies the plain, The fields we then frequented;

not being in Scotland at the time, and this kind If e'er we meet, she shows disdain,

and hospitable ecclesiasticofthe Romish Church, to She looks as ne'er acquainted.

which this noble family has unremittingly adhered, The bonny bush bloomed fair in May, Its sweets I'll aye remember,

gave us full license to indulge all the curiosity of But now her frowns make it decay;

antiquarian research with which we were filled. It fades as in December.

We visited every part of this curious houseYe Rural Powers, who hear my strains,

curious from its many strange passages and stairs, Why thus should Peggy grieve me?

and singular apartments and minute closets. Oh! make her partner in my pains; Then let her smiles relieve me,

Some of the furniture was old; but one very richly If not, my love will turn despair, 1

carved morceau, the cradle of James IV., undere My passion no more tender; I'll leave the Bush aboon Traquair,

went our minutest inspection, as being one of the To lonely wilds I'll wander,"

most interesting objects we had met with. But if we possessed the means of giving an outline of the scene altogether would be very different. If not unpretending and truly genuine hospitalities of this founded by Sir Gideon Murray, the father of the house-as they were administered, generation af- first Lord Elibank, and directly descended from ter generation, by its successive noble proprietors, the renowned family of Blackbarony, it was at during a long course of ages—we shoald, as we least repaired and enlarged by him. He was almost conscientiously believe, be enabled to pro- together a very remarkable man, and so remarkduce a series of graphic scenes, many of which able for the judicious management of his affairs, would be infinitely touching to the human heart, that when James VI. came to Scotland to visit his as we have had full occasion to guess at from the northern subjects, Sir Gideon was chosen as the slight sketches which we, from time to time, re- fittest individual to manage and control the exceived from our grandfather of his experience of, penditure consequent on the expedition. But and participation in, its hospitalities, during his whilst we cannot afford to go into any general acacquaintance, as a young man, with what were count of the merits of Sir Gideon in this place, then considered to be the ancient usages of the there is an anecdote connected with him which noble House of Traquair.

cannot be too often recorded, as it is richly illusOld Pennecuik himself, in parting with Tra-trative of the manners of the times. quair, breaks out into the following verses, which, A feud had for some time existed between the as a specimen of his poetry, we all the more con- Murrays and the Scotts. In prosecution of this, sider ourselves as bound in honour to give to our William Scott, son of the head of the family of readers, after the consideration that we have so Harden, stole, with his followers, from his Border abundantly availed ourselves of his prose :- strength of Oakwood Tower on the river Ettrick, “On fair Tweedside, from Berwick to the Bield, to lead them on a foray against Sir Gideon of EliTraquair, for beauty, fairly wins the field,

bank. But Sir Gideon was too much on his guard So many charms, by nature and by art, Do there combine to captivate the heart,

for his enemies, and having fallen on them as they And please the eye, with what is fine and rare; were driving off the cattle, he defeated them, took

Few other seats can match with sweet Traquair." them prisoners, and recovered the spoil. His And, after leaving it, he hastens to conclude his lady having met him on his return, and congraaccount of the Tweed, and of Tweeddaleor Peebles- tulated him on his su cess, ventured to ask him shire, by telling us that, “on the other side is what he was going to do with young Harden. the Pirn, which was the residence of the chief of “Why, strap him up to the gallows-tree, to be the name of Tait; after which follow the Haugh- sure, replied Sir Gideon.

“ Hout na, Sir head Bole— the Scrogbank — Kirnaw-Purvis Gideon,” said the considerate matron, “would hill-Caverton-Gatelope Knowe—and Gate- you hang the winsome young Laird of Harden, hope Burn, where Tweeddale ends, and marches when ye have three ill-favoured daughters to with the sheriffdom of Selkirk, or the Forest.” marry ?” “Right,” answered the baron, “he And as we know that none of these are objects of shall either marry our daughter, mickle-mouthed any peculiar interest, we shall now proceed to Meg, or he shall strap for it.” When this alter trace the Tweed into the Romantic Forest. native was proposed to the prisoner, he at first

But before doing so we must notice the pleas- stoutly preferred the gibbet to the lady; but as ant modern residence of Lord Elibank on its right he was led out to the fatal tree for immediate bank, and still more, Elibank Tower, the an- execution, the question began to wear a different cient stronghold of his ancestors. The general aspect, and life, even with mickle-mouthed Meg, scenery of the river here is that of prettily, though seemed to have a certain sunshine about it very not grandly, shaped hills of fine green pasture, and different from the darkness of that tomb to which the ruin in question stands high up on the gentle the gallows would have so immediately consigned slope of one of these, there being no wood nearer him. He married Meg, and an excellent wife to it than on the immediate bank of the river. she made him, and they lived for many years a This castle consisted of a double tower, sur- happy couple, and Sir Walter Scott came by rounded by its outworks and subordinate buildings. descent from this marriage. Would we could Attached to it was a beautiful terraced garden, transfer to these pages the animated sketch of which encompassed it on the south and west sides, this scene by our friend Mr. Charles Kirkpatrick and one may easily imagine, that when the hill Sharpe, which, we believe, hangs at Abbotsford, sides were covered with their due proportion of where a few bold lines so perfectly convey the forest, and when these terrace gardens were in trim whole humour, not only of the subject, but of the order, and when knights and ladies gay were at individual characters, as to leave all verbal deall times furnishing then with living figures, the scription quite in the background.

(To be continued.)

« AnkstesnisTęsti »