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«The bark thou saw'st, yon summer moru,
<< The Fergus too-thy sister's son,
Thou saw'st, with pride, the gallant's power, As marching 'gainst the lord of Downe, He left the skirts of huge Benmore.
« Thou only saw'st their tartans' wave,
«I heard the groans, I mark'd the tears, I saw the wound his bosom bore, When on the scrried Saxon spears
He pour'd his clan's resistless roar.
« And thou, who bid'st me think of bliss, And bid'st my heart awake to glee, And court, like thee, the wanton kiss,
That heart, O Ronald, bleeds for thee!
« I see the death damps chill thy brow;
--Alone enjoy thy dreary dreams,
Or false, or sooth, thy words of woe, Clangillian's chieftain ne'er shall fear; His blood shall bound at rapture's glow, Though doom'd to stain the Saxon spear.
« E'en now, to meet me in yon dell, My Mary's buskins brush the dew.»— He spoke, nor bade the chief farewell,
But call'd his dogs, and gay withdrew.
Within an hour return'd each hound; In rush'd the rousers of the deer; They howl'd in melancholy sound,
Untouch'd, the harp began to ring,
And, by the watch-fire's glimmering light,
All dropping wet her garments seem,
« With her a chief in Highland pride, His shoulders bear the hunter's bow, The mountain dirk adorns his side,
Far on the wind his tartans flow?»
«And who art thou? and who are they?>> All ghastly gazing, Moy replied: «And why, beneath the moon's pale ray, Dare ye thus roam Gleufinlas' side?»
« Where wild Loch Katrine pours her tide,
«To chase the dun Glenfinlas deer, Our woodland course this morn we bore,
And haply met, while wandering here, The son of great Macgillianore.
« O aid me, then, to seek the pair,
« O first, for pity's gentle sake,
<< O shame to knighthood, strange and fou!! Go, doff the bonnet from thy brow, And shroud thee in the monkish cowl,
Which best befits thy sullen vow.
Then closely couch beside the Seer.
No Ronald yet; though midnight came,
He fed the watch-fire's quivering gleams.
Sudden the hounds erect their ears,
And sudden cease their moaning howl; Close press'd to Moy, they mark their fears By shivering limbs, and stifled growi
1 Tartans-The full Highland dress, made of the chequered stu so termed,
Pibroch-A piece of martial music, adapted to the Highland
« Not thine a race of mortal blood,
Nor old Glengyle's pretended line; Thy dame, the Lady of the Flood,
Thy sire, the Monarch of the Mine.»
He mutter'd thrice St Oran's rhyme,
And thrice Si Fillan's powerful prayer; (5) Then turn'd him to the eastern clime,
And sternly shook his coal-black hair.
And, bending o'er his harp, he flung
His wildest witch-poles on the wind; And loud, and high, and strange, they rung,
As many a magic change they find.
Tall wax'd the Spirit's altering form,
Till to the roof ber stature grew; Then, mingling with the rising storm,
With one wild yell, a way she flew.
Rain beats, bail rattles, whirlwinds tear:
The slender hut in fragments (lew; But not a lock of Moy's loose hair
Was waved by wind, or wet by dew.
Wild mingling with the howling gale,
Loud bursts of ghastly laugliter rise; High o'er the midstrel's head they sail,
And die amid the northern skies.
Note 1. Stanza jii.
Well can the Saxon widows tell. The term Sassenach, or Saxon, is applied by the Highlanders to their Low-country neighbours.
Note 2. Stanza iv.
How blazed Lord Ronald's beltane tree. The fires lighted by the Highlanders on the first of May, in compliance with a custom derived from the Pagan times, are termed, the Beltane Tree. It is a festival celebrated with various superstitious rites, both in the north of Scotland and in Wales.
Note 3. Stanza vii.
The seer's propbetic spirit found, etc. I can only describe the second sight, by adopting Dr Johnson's definition, who calls it « an impression, either by the mind upon the eye, or by the eye upon the mind, by which things distant and future are perceived and seen as if they were present.» To which I would only adıl, that the spectral appearances, thus presented, usually presage misfortune ; that the faculty is painful to those who suppose they possess it; and that they usually acquire it, while themselves under the pressure of melancholy.
Note 4. Stanza xxii.
Will good St Oran's rule prevail. St Oran was a friend and follower of St Columba, and was buried in lcolmkill. His pretensions to be a saint were rather dubious. According to the legend, he consented to be buried alive, in order to propitiate certain demons of the soil, who obstructed the attempts of Columba to build a chapel. Columba caused the body of his frieod to be dug up, after three days had elu psed; wlien Oran, to the horror and scandal of the assistants, declared, that there was neither a God, a judyment, nor a future state! He had no time to make further discoveries, for Columba caused the earth ouce more to be shovelled over him with the utmost dispatch. The chapel, however, and the cemetry, was called Reilig Ouran; and, in memory of his rigid celibacy, no female was permitted to pay her devotions, or be buried, in that place. This is the rule alluded to in the poem.
Note 5. Stanza lv.
The voice of thunder shook the wood,
As ceased the more than mortal yell; And, spaltering foul, a shower of blood
Upon the hissing firebrands feli.
Next, dropp'd from high a mangled arm;
The fingers straind a half-drawn blade; Aod last, the life-blood streaming warm,
Tora from the trunk, a gasping head.
Oft o'er that head, in battling field,
Stream'd the proud crest of high Benmorc; That arm the broad claymore could wield,
Which dyed the Teith with Saxon gore.
Woe to Moneira's sullen rills!
Woe to Glenfinlas' dreary glen! There never son of Albyo's bills
Shall draw the hunter's shaft agen!
fountains, etc. in Scotland. He was, according to Ca- 1 is a ruined chapel. Brotherstone is a heath, in the merarius, an abbot of Pittenweem, in Fife, from which neighbourhood of Smaylho'me Tower. situation he retired, and died a herinit in the wilds of This ancient fortress and its vicinity formed the seene Gleourchy, A.D. 649. While eng ged in transcribing of the author's infancy, and seemed to claim from him the Scriptures, his left hand was observed to send forth this attempt 10 celebrate them in a Border tale. such a splendour, as to afford light to that with which catastrophe of the tale is founded upon a well-know he wrote; a miracle which saved many candles to the Irish tradition. convent, as St Fillan used to spend whole nights in that cxercise. The gth of January was dedicated to this The Baron of Smaylho'me rose with day, saiot, who gave his name to Kilbillan, in Renfrew, and
He spurr'd his courser on, St Phillans, or Forgend, in Fifc. Lesley, lib. 7. tells us, without stop or stay, down the rocky way, that Robert the Bruce was possessed of Fillan's miracu.
That leads to Brotherstone. lous and luminous arm, which he inclosed in a silver shrine, and had it carried at the head of his army. Pre-Ile went not with the bold Buccleuch, vious to the battle of Bannockburn, the king's chap- His banner broad to rear; , Jain, a man of little faith, abstracted the relic, and des He went not gainst the English yew posited it in some place of security, lest it should fall To lift the Scottish spear. into the hands of the English. But, lo! wliile Robert was addressing his prayers to the empty casket, it was Yet his plate-jack' was braced, and his helmet was laced, observed to open and shui suddenly; and, on inspection, And his vaupt-brace of proof he wore; the saint was found to lave himself deposited his arın At his saddle-gerthe was a good steel sperthe, in the shrine, as an assurance of victory. Such is the
Full ten pound weight and more. tale of Lesley. But though Bruce little needed that the arm of St Fillan should assise his own, he dedicated to The baron return'd in three days' space, him, in gratitude, a priory at Killin, upon Loch Tay. Asd his looks were sad and sour;
In the Scots Magazine for July, 1802 (a national pe- and weary was his courser's pace, riodical publication, which has lately revived with con- As he reach'd his rocky tower. siderable energy), there is a copy of a very curious crown-grant, dated 11th July, 1487, by which James He came not from where Ancram Moor? III. confirms to Malice Doire, an inhabitant of Strath- Ran red with English blood; fillan, in Perthshire, the peaccable exercise and enjoy. Where the Douglas true, and the bold Buceleuch, ment of a relic of St Fillan, called the Quegrich, which 'Gainst keen Lord Evers stood. be, and his predecessors, are said to have possessed since the days of Robert Bruce. As the Quegrich was Yet was liis helmet hack'd and hew'd, used to cure diseases, this document is, probably, the
llis acion pierced and tore ; most ancient patent ever granted for a quack medicine. Mis axe aod his dagger with blood embrued, The ingenious correspondent, by whom it is furnished,
But it was not English gore. further observes, that additional particulars concerning St Fillan are to be found in Ballenden's Boece, Book He lighted at the Chapellage, 4, folio ccxiii, and in Pennant's Tour in Scotland, 1772,
He held him close and still; PP. II, 15.
And he wiristled thrice for his little foot-pige,
His name was English Will.
«Come thou hither, my little foot-page; THE EVE OF SAINT JOHN.
Come bisher to my knee;
Though thou art young, and tender of age,
lowing ballad, is situated on the northern boundary of
And look thou tell me true!
My lady, each night, sought the lonely light, | a steep and rocky path. The apartments, as is usual in
That burns on the wild Watchfold; a Border keep, or fortress, are placed one above another, For, from height to height, the beacons bright and communicate by a narrow stair ; on the roof are
Of the English foemen told. two bartizans, or platforms, for defence or pleasure. The inner door of the tower is wood, the outer an iron
« The bittern clamour'd from the moss, grate; the distance between them being nine feet, the
The wiod blew loud and shrill; thickness, namely, of the wall. From the elevated si-Yet the craggy pathway she did cross, tuation of Smaylho'me Tower, it is seen many miles in
To the eiry beacon hill. every direction. Among the cracs, by which it is surrounded, one, more eminent, is called The Watch fold;
The picte-jock is cat-armoar; the suni-brace, a razbres and is said to have been the station of a beacon, in the armour for the body: the sperike, a battle-ase.
* See an account of the lattle of Ancrara Meur, sabjoised . times of war with England. Wishout the towercourt ballad.
al watch'd her steps, and silent came
*At the lone midnight hour, when bad spirits have Where she sat her on a stone;
power, No watchman stood by the dreary flame;
In tlıy chamber will I be.'It burned all alone.
With that he was gone, and my lady left alone,
And no more did I see.»— & The second night I kept her in sight, Till to the fire she came,
Then changed. I trow, was that bold baron's brow, And, by Mary's might! an armed knight
From the dark to the blood-red hiigla; Stood by the lonely flame.
« Now, tell me the mien of the knight thou hast seen,
For, by Mary, he shall die!» # And many a word that warlike lord Did speak to my lady there;
« His arms shone full briglit in the beacon's red light, But the rain fell fast, and loud blew the blast,
His plume it was scarlet and blue; And I heard not what they were.
On his shield was a liound, in a silver leash bound,
And liis crest was a branch of the yew.» «The third night there the sky was fair,
« Thou liest, thou liest, thou little foot-page, And the mountain blast was still,
Loud dost thou lie to me!
For that knight is cold, and low laid in the mould,
All under the Eildon-tree, « Ånd I heard her name the midnight hour, And name this holy eve;
« Yet hear but my word, my noble lord,
For I heard bier name bis name; And • Come this night to thy lady's bower;
And that lady bright, she call'd the knight, *Ask no bold baron's leave.
Sir Richard of Coldinghame.» De lifts bis spear with the bold Buccleuch;
The bold baron's brow then changed, I trow, • His lady is all alone;
From high blood-red to pale*The door she'll undo tu her knight so true,
« The grave is deep and dark-and the corpse is stiff On the eve of good Sc Jolin.'
and starkI cannot come; I must not come;
So I may not trust thy tale. I dare not corne to thee;
« Where fair Tweed flows round holy Melrose, On the eve of Saint John Linust wander alone
And Eildon slopes to the plain, In thy bower I may not be.
Full three niglits ago, by some secret foe, Now, out on thee, faint-hearted knight!
That gay gallant was slain. • Thou shouldst not say me nayi
« The varying light deceived thy sight, . For the eve is sweet, and when lovers meet,
And the wild winds drownd the naine; • Is worth the whole summer's day.
For the Dryburgli bells ring, and the white monks do
sing, * And I'll chain the blood-hound, and the warder shall
For Sir Richard of Coldinghame!» not sound, * And rushes shall be strewd on the stair,
Ue pass'd the court-rate, and he opend the lower * So, by the black rood-stone,' and by boly St Jolin,
grate, • I conjure, thee, my love, to be there!
And le mounted the narrow stair,
To the bartizan-seat, where, with maids that on her Though the blood-hound be mute, and the rush be
Ile found liis lady fair.
Look'd over billaud dale ; * Aod my foolstep be would know.'
Over Tweed's fair flood, and Mertoun's? wood,
And all down Tevioidale. *O fear not the priest, who slecpesh to the east ! * For to Dryburgli: the way he has ta'en ;
« Now hail, now hail, thou lady brighie!» And there to say mass, till three days do pass,
« Now liail, thou baron true! * For the soul of a knight that is slayne.'
Wiat news, whal news, from Ancram fight?
What news from the bold Buccleuch ?» • He turn'd him round, and grimly he frown'd; Then he laughid right scornfully
neram Moot is red with gore • He who says the mass-rise for the soul of that knight For many a southero fell; May as well say mass for me.
And Buccleuch bas charged us, evermore,
To watch our beacons well.» Tbe black rood of Melrose was a crucifix of black marble, and of superior sanctity.
" Eildon is a high hill, terminating in three conical summits, im* Dryburgb Abbey is beautifully situated on the banks of the mediately above the town of Melrose, where are tbe admired ruins Tweed. After its dissolution, it became the property of the Ilali- of a magoitic at monastery. Eildon-tree is said to be the spot burtops of Newmains, and is now thu seat of the right honourable where Thomas the Olymer uttered bis prophecies. the Earl of Buchan. It belonged 10 the order of Premonstratenses. * Mertoun is the beautiful seat of Hugh Scott, Esq. of Harden.
fountains, etc. in Scouan merarius, an abbot of Piran situation he retired, and Glepurchy, A.D. 619 the Scriptures, his let such a splendour, idha he wrote; a mira convent, as St Filiu exercise. saint, who gaveli St Phillans, on that Robert the lous and lun shrine, and has vious to the lain, a mi posited in into the was dit obsery the in 1 tal
Hot ts three,
ver are said for me, ne vain.
to wear Tweed's fair strand,
BATTLE OF AYCRAM MOOR. Lord Evers, and Sir Brian Latouo, during the star 1544, committed the most dreadful ravages upon tr Scottish frontiers, compelling most of the jolabitats, and especially the men of Liddesdale, to take assuran: under the King of England. Upon the oth Sosemlet. in that year, the sum total of their depredalious stond tlus, in the bloody ledger of Lord Evers.
Towns, towers, barnekynes, paryshe
churches, bastill houses, burned
403 Prisoners taken
810 Nolt (cattle)
Murdin's State Papers, vol. i, p. 51. The King of England had promised to these two barons a feudal grant of the country, which they bail to reduced to a desert; upon hearing which, Arctibel! Douglas, the seventh earl of Angus, is said to lur sworn to write the deed of investiture upon their skir, 1 with sharp pens and bloody ink, in resentment the their having defaced the tombs of his ancestors, al We
- Godscroft. In 1545, Lord Evers and Lates!! again entered Scotland with an army, consisting oil 3ovo mercenaries, 1500 Euglish Borderers, and se do sured Scottishmen, chiefly Armstrongs, Turnbulls, zal other broken clans. Ju this second incursion, the En lish generals even exceeded their former cruelty. Erres burned the tower of Broomhouse with its lady (a noble and aged woman, says Lesley), and her whole fame The English penetrated as far as Melrose, which they had destroyed last year, and which they now againp laged As they returned towards Jedburgh, they were i followed by Angus, at the head of 1000 horse, who uh shortly after joined by the famous Norman leker, *t. a body of Fife.men. The English, being probabls 1 willing to cross the Teviot while the Scots hung up ! their rear, halted upon Ancram Moor, above the da: of that name; and the Scottislı general was deliberatun whether lo advance or retire, when Sir Walter Scout'
to the beacon's height,
Web For a certain space, * bhi fro; »*** to come to thy bower, vojured me so.»
der brow she cross'd; staatso 4 thou sped? me or art thou lost?»shua hais bead !
* P**shall forfeit life;
* believe: ****** is guilt above,
wel de extremelm on an oaken beam; ten puheena her hind :
tecto eat frinting sunk, Wilhe a fiery brand,
met water awr of fingers four,
Baza wiet that boird impressid ; bo tore that lady wore
*** oa her wrist.
a man in Dryburghi bower, V upou ilıe sun: ne de mouk in Melrose tower,
ik yuvarth word to none.
"The editor bas found no instance upon record of this for having taken assurance with Enzland. Hence they usually sufera dreadfully from the Eoglish forays. In Auzust, 5 ibe scarpe ceding the battle), the w bole lands belongiog to Berdeach, Teviotdale, were harried by Evers; the out-sors, or trek.es the tower of Braoxbolm, burned; eigbt Scots slaia, thirty Bade prisoners, and an immense prey of borses, caille, and sheep arts. off. The lands upon Kale Water, belonging to the same darf were also pluodered, and much spoil obtaibed, thirty Souts and the Moss Tower (a fortress near Eckford modem sam Tbus Baccleuch had a long account to settle at Asstaa W-| Mundia's Siak Papers, pp. 45, 46.
Place of rendezvous.