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genuity. Some of them appear to have of. on his hands to acquire or to repeat ; "and, fended against, and others to have belonged said the poor fellow, “ look at my breeks and to, the sacred body, from the indecencies at me; I am starving." This speech was more and blasphemies, or from the churches and affecting than his performance, which habit belfries, which they have scratched upon the alone can make attractive. The recitative walls. The reader may not object to see a was shrill, screaming, and monotonous, and specimen of the records prompted by so ter- the fisherman behind assisted his voice by rific a solitude. As nearly as they could be plugging his finger into one side of his copied by more than one pencil, four of mouth, and making his cheek sound buck" them are as follows:

as he drew it out. The chairman used a 1

quiet action, something like the regular jolt '" Trust no other,

of a chair ; but he became too much interNot even your brother

ested in his subject altogether to repress his Can give thee assistance.

vehemence. The verses to which my noble Here goes ! keep your distance !

friend so elegantly alludes are the following: James Craigie."

“ Glasgow for bells, 2

Linlithgow for wells, “Speak no word ;

Edinburgh for writers and wh_es.” Hold in your breath;

Many, amongst the lower classes, these Press hard

men informed us, are familiar with this inFor life or death.

teresting and most comprehensive stanza, John Buchan of the College Kirk." which, for rapid sketching, is equal to any 3

thing in our language. Friends and foes may say as they please,

STANZA 4 So help me God! I shall here have my case.

Provostless city." 4 Pauperibus æque prodest, locupletibus æque,

Vates, I remember being taught at Har, £que neglectum pueris senibusque nocebit. row (I owe all to the benevolent birch of Dr Th. Lamb. Stud. Log. 1817.

Joseph Drury), signifies a prophet as well For a more scientific and statistical view

as a poet. It is in the former character of this subject, see the leading article of Con

that I speak here. Edinburgh has still her stable's Scotch Magazine før March.

Provost and her Bailies, but “ how long ?”.

All the law proceedings on this interesting STANZA 2.

question, as well as every scrap that has been “ She looks like old Cybele on Mount Ida,

spoken or written on the subject of the new Rising with her tiara of proud towers,"

buildings on the Bridge of Sighs, shall apAn old writer, describing the

pear in the historical illustrations.

appearance of the old town of Edinburgh, has made

Brodie." use of the above image, which could not Thanks to the acumen of the Scotch, we be poetical were it not true,-as Boileau's know as little of Brodie as ever. The hy"creaking lyre, that whetstone of the teeth, pothesis which carried many along in its monotony in wire,” has it“ Rein n'est current, viz. that he is still alive, is run out; beau que le vrai.”

and we have thus another proof that we can

never be sure that the paradox, the most STANZA 2.

singular, and therefore having the most " Mother of lawyers, writers, clerks, and agreeable and authentic air, will not give whes.

way to the established ancient prejudice. This line alludes to a very curious old It seems however certain, in the first place, rhyme which the author of Childe Harold that although Brodie was born, lived, and and another English gentleman, the writer was hanged, we have no proof that he was of this notice, heard when they were rowed buried. The Grey-friars and the Westto Pettycur with two singers, one of whom kirk may indeed resume their pretensions, was a chairman, and the other a fisherman. and even the exploded Calton-hill may again The former placed himself at the bow, the be heard with complacency. That deliberlatter at the stern of the boat. A little after ate duties were performed round a carcase leaving the pier of Leith they began to sing, deposited in one of these three places of and continued their exercise until we arrived interment, twelve hours after the execution, off Inchkeith. They gave us, among other we have incontestible proofs,—but who essays, “ The Death of Sir Patrick Spence," knows whether it was not the body of one and • Wat ye wha's in yon town,” and did who died of the plague, or of the typhus not sing English but Scotch verses. The fever? Did any one see the mark of the chairman, however, who was the cleverer rope round the neck ? There was indeed a of the two, and was frequently obliged to false key and a forged note thrown into the prompt his companion, told us that he could grave along with it ; but that may have translate the original. He added, that he been done out of mere malice. It does not could sing almost three hundred stanzas, appear that even Bailie Johnston could bụt had not spirits (fuirntosh was the word bring ocular proof (though he were to prohe used) to learn any more, or to sing what duce the skeleton) that this was the identi, he already knew, A man must have idle time cal Brodie.

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Secondly, Brodie was very tender of his nine inches and a half."-After having
life, and very prudent in his schemes ; and reigned more than thirty years at the head
it is well known that he had contrived some of his profession, he died full of years and
little machinery, by which the alternate ris- honours, and was buried. Strangely enough
ings and fallings of the rope might be obvi- must it sound, that though there are still many
ated, and even the first hangman of the age excellent medical practitioners in Edinburgh
be deceived. Brodie's love of life was cer- of the name of Wood (not to mention the re-
tainly not Platonic. The happiness which bel quack apothecary who migrated to Man-
he longed to possess did not lie in another chester, and called himself Dr Lignum),
world, and that he looked upon any such there is not one Sandy among them.
vain expectation as either too shadowy, too
much of mind, and too little of matter, for As these notes would run out to
his taste, may be perhaps detected in at least much too great a length for the poem
six places of his own letters. In short, his' to which they are appended, it is pro-
love for life was neither Platonic nor poeti posed to publish the remainder in two
cal,- and if, in one passage (he understood
Italian, for he lived much with fiddlers) he large quarto volumes, on the model of
speaks of “ amore veementissimo ma unico Dr Drake's Shakspeare and his times.
ed onesta,”-he confesses, in a letter to a

H.
friend, that it was guilty and perverse, that
it absorbed him quite, and mastered his
heart.

SOME REMARKS ON W'S ACCOUNT OF “ Thomas Muir."

THE KRAKEN, COLOSSAL CUTTLEThomas Muir retired to Fontainbleau

FISH, AND GREAT SEA SERPENT. immediately on being carried into France,

MR EDITOR, after his unsuccessful attempt to escape from I Am a sea-faring man, and have, in Botany Bay to America, and, with the excep- my time, seen sights, the mention of tion of his celebrated visit to Paris in com.

which would appear incredible to a pany with Tom Paine, he appears to have passed his last years in that charming soli.

mere landsman, but I confess that tude. He was in a state of great pain from your learned correspondent W. makes his wound for some months previous to his me stare at his apparently well-audeath, but was at last, one morning, found thenticated stories of sea monsters, hidead in his library chair, with his hand rest- therio supposed to have only lived in

" The Rights of Man." The the imagination of poets, or the superchair is still kept among the precious relics stitious fancy of ancient historians. of Fontainbleau; and from the uninter

And first, If such a sea monster as rupted veneration that has been attached to

the kraken do really exist,

,-a monster every thing relative to this great man, from the moment of his death to the present time, resembling a floating island, with nuit has a better chance of authenticity than merous arms, equal in length and size even the chair on which the great Napoleon, to the masts of ships,-of such imat the same place, signed his first abdication, mense size, that the Norwegian fisherand which has been waggishly termed his men, (but no other,) do constantly Elba-chair.

endeavour to find out its resting place, STANZA 8.

(which they know, it is said, by the "Oh, for one hour of him who knew no feud, shallowness of the water,) to catch the Th’octogenarian chief, the kind old Sandy fishes that lie round it, as a bank,Wood !

I say, if such a monster has been playThe reader will recollect the exclamation ing its accustomed pranks, during unof the Highlander, Oh, for one hour of numbered years, is it not very remarkDundee !"-Sandy Wood (one of the de- able, that not one out of seven hunlightful reminiscences of old Edinburgh) was at least eighty years of age when in high

dred British ships, (exclusive of forepute as a medical man, he could yet divert reigners,) which have crossed and rehimself in his walks with the “ hie schuil crossed every part of the North Sea, laddies," or bestow the relics of his universal even to polar regions, perhaps four, benevolence in feeding a goat or a raven. or even six, times in one year, should There is a prophecy of Meg Merrilies, in have all been so extremely unfortuwhich these ancients are thus alluded to.

nate, (or, I ought rather to say, for“ A gathering together of the powerful shall be made amidst the caves of the inhabitants ships run upon this mass, it woulel

tunate ; for, had any one of these of Dunedin,--Sandy is at his rest: they have been fatal as a rock,) as never to shall beset his goat, they shall profane his raven, they shall blacken the buildings of have seen one of such sea monsters. the infirmary: her secrets shall be examin. This is of itself, in my opinion, a sufed: a new goat shall bleat until they have ficient refutation of all the narratives nieasured out and run over fifty-four feet of early voyagers,--the fictions record,

ing upon

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ed in the sixteenth and seventeenth passing on their respective voyages, centuries,

,-or the inconsistent vagaries floating dead or alive on the sea, or of Norwegian fishermen.

driven, by various causes, either on Indeed, Mr Editor, it is a happy the coast of Scotland, its isles, or that circumstance for our country, that if of Norway. On the contrary, seldom such an animal as the kraken do exist, a year passes but there are numerous their numbers are not great, nor are instances of whales losing themselves, they capable of any great exertion. and running on some of the aboveIf this species had an existence when mentioned coasts. I shall not agitate Pliny flourished, (which your corres- this question farther; and therefore pondent seems to prove, there either proceed to the examination of the comust have been no propagation since lossal cuttle-fish, which shall not dethat period, or the passage over the tain us long. German Ocean (at least between Shet- The cuttle-fish, though, according land and Norway,) must have been to Pennant, Shaw, and others, enorrendered, many years ago, impracti- mously large, bears no comparison to cable, by their natural mortality. The the mighty kraken; nor can I well general depth of that channel is from see, from the description given of the 60 to 80 fathoms; and in no part, two monsters, how they can be identieven up to Spitzbergen, deeper than fied as the same species; the one be6 or 700 fathoms. Now, allowing ing an inhabitant of the Indian Ocean, that when Pliny wrote, there existed the other of the North Sea. ten couple of these animals--that they The only thing like evidence in suppropagated only one male and one fe- port of the existence of the colossal male in sixty years—that they never cuttle-fish, (and that is of a most suswere killed by accident, nor by the picious kind,) is an account given by hand of man, (for so it appears,) but a Captain Dens, recorded in the works died a natural death at the good round of Denys Mertfort, and made use of age of two hundred years, what must by subsequent authorities, that the be the aggregate number lying dead, Captain, while in the African Seas, or now roaming at large on the north- lost three of his men by an attack ern ocean? As this question, how- from this monster, whilst employed in ever, involves much nicety of calcula- cleaning the ship's sides; and he adds, tion, I shall at present leave it to the “ that its arms were the thickness of determination of our worthy professor a mizen mast, with suckers of the size of Mathematics.

of pot-lids." Pennant, it appears, The whale, which is the largest sea only affirms, “ that he was well asanimal, except the one in question, sured by persons of undoubted credit, that we know of, is generally sup- that in the Indian Seas it has been posed to have young every second or found of such a size as to measure two third year; and the Greenland fishers, fathoms in breadth across the central aware of this fact, always make sure part,” &c. &c.—the remaining part of of the mother, (for the maternal af- the passage is too absurd to merit atfection is here exhibited in a very tention. Dr Shaw appears to have made striking point of view, which I have Captain Dens' account of this sea monmore than once witnessed,) by killing ster a subject of lecture, without the her young first. Allowing, however, support of ocular demonstration, or that the whale had been originally other testimonies sufficient to impress constituted like the kraken, at least

any belief of its actual existso far as never to appear on the surface but in calm weather, (which is Now, Mr Editor, I was fifteen years seldom the case in these climates) nor afioat in the Indian Ocean, and, dus any of the species to have been killed ring that eventful period, visited alby man,

and that the usual term of most every island, capital, creek, and their existence was two hundred years, course, from the Cape of Good Hope is it at all probable, or consistent with to the confines of the Molucca Islands, reason, to suppose, that out of one but never saw nor heard of this monhundred and fifty-seven thousand ster, nor any of the ravages of its fewhales, (about the average number rocity. It may, however, be asserted, killed by Europeans since 1060,) not and with some justice, that the evione of this multitude should ever have dence of seamen, relative to the wonbeen seen by ships passing and re- derful productions of nature, or other

us with

ence.

ment.

6

subjects peculiar to the countries they East and West Indies, as well as in have visited, is often unaccountably the southern parts of the coast of exaggerated; or, if near the truth, so America, many sea snakes, as they are perplexed with ignorance, that it is called, from six to twelve, and even extremely difficult to gather truth from fourteen feet in length, but very harmsuch authority. I conceive, however, less in their nature. In the year 1792, that if the ravages comınitted by the while at anchor at St Johns, Antigua, colossal cuttle-fish were nearly as fre- one of these snakes, which was about quent as the horrid ferocities of the six feet, as well as I remember, in shark, alligator, &c. its name and length, got on the ship's deck by terror would have been as frequently means of the cable, through the hawsein our mouths and minds, as the hole, which was taken up in the naked names and terrors of these enemies of hand, and heaved into its own elethe human race; but, so far from this being the case, I do not recollect Had your correspondent repressed ever having heard, during the long Paul Egede's absurd and irreconcileperiod I was in those seas, of the able fiction (for it deserves no other name ever being mentioned.

term), and a few others of the like Whilst in the Red Sea, watching cast, our belief would have been greatthe motions of Bonaparte, I remember ly strengthened by the information often observing, as did also every offi- given by our transatlantic brethren; cer and man in the ship, an enormous but when we see so many absurdisea monster ; but so far from being ties mixed with facts, I really do not ferocious, like the cuttle-fish, when well know what to think of the whole, we made any attempt in our boats to when deliberately called on to give approach it, it continually disappeared. credit to such a fable as, “ A hideous This fish (the name of which I never sea monster was seen, July 6th,” but ascertained,) was always to be clisco- no year mentioned, which reared vered in the Red Sea, by vast flocks itself so high above the water, that its of gulls hovering over the spot where head overtopped our mainsail,” which it lay. When perfectly calm, which must have been at least forty feet was there frequently the case, parti- above the surface of the sea." It cularly in the mornings, we used to had a long pointed nose, out of which be highly amused by looking at this it spouted like a whale. Instead of monster lying basking in the rays of fins, it had great broad flaps like the sun, with the upper jaw of the wings ; its body seemed to be grown mouth, which had some resemblanceover with shell-work,” perhaps in to the great porch door of an old ca- masonic order ; " and its skin was thedral, but probably much larger, very rugged and uneven. It was hove back to the angle of 45° from the shaped like a serpent behind; and perpendicular, whilst the lower jaw when it dived into the water again, it lay extended on the surface of the sea. plunged itself backwards, and raised In this position, while thousands of its tail above the water a whole ship's gulls (whether attracted by the odour length from its body.” of its breath, or some other cause, I I shall only observe again, that it is know not) were flying immediately a most fortunate circumstance, that over the throat, making a dreadful these sea monsters are so very scarce noise, which was heard at a great dis- as not to be seen more than once or tance, the upper and lower jaws were twice in a whole century; for if more brought together like lightning, with numerous, the consequence would have a clap resembling the report of a great been most fatal to a great maritime gun, by which means some hundreds nation, like Great Britain. Our seaof the feathered tribe were entrapped men, undoubtedly the most superstiinto the stomach. This operation was tious part of the whole community, repeated about every ten minutes, un- would very soon have lost all that til satisfied, when the animal disap- ardour and enterprise with which this peared.

brave and heroic body of men are so After what I have advanced against universally characterised ; our emi, the existence of the kraken and cuttle- nence, foreign and domestic, would fish, it may be expected I should say soon have been annihilated, governsoinething about the great sea serpent. ment bankrupt, and the nation a prey I have otten witnessed, both in the to famine and civil discord. These

NOTICES OF THE ACTED DRAMA IN

LONDON.

are considerations worthy, if not of ry at Tunis, discovers that Charles V. the attention of your correspondent, is marching against the pirate city. at least of the serious contemplation He arms the Christian slaves against of ministers; and in order to ascer- their tyrants, and becomes himself tain the fact of the existence of these their leader; binding himself by an sea monsters, I strongly recommend, oath, that not liberty, or even the emwithout loss of time, such measures braces of his wife and child, shall as, in the wisdom of government, may make him abandon the common cause. appear most conducive to that end. At this period his wife Bellamira But perhaps the ships that have gone (Miss O'Neil), whom he considered on the northern expedition have or- to be in Italy, and separated from him ders to this effect.

W. B. for ever, arrives at Tunis with her Edinburgh, 9th May 1818.

child, as slaves. Manfredi attempts to save his wife from the grasp of the barbarians, and is, in consequence, about to be sacrificed to their rage, when Montalto (Mr Young) arrives on the spot, and saves him. Montalto

has been admiral of Naples; but being No V.

exiled, by the intrigues of his own

brother Salerno (Mr Terry), he reCovent Garden Theatre.

pairs to Tunis, abjures his religion, Mr Shell, the author of the Apostate, and is placed in high power. He uses has written a new tragedy called Bel- it to give freedom to Manfredi, his LAMIRA, or The FALL OF Tunis, wife, and child, about whom he is which was produced at this theatre on particularly interested, on account of the 22d of April. It is characterised her resemblance, both in name and by the same faults as Mr Sheil's first person, to his own (as he supposes) production, and they are carried to murdered child-murdered by Salerno. even a more extravagant extent; but, At this period Sinano (Mr Macready), from what we could judge by the re- who is also a renegade from his counpresentation, it possesses more and try, arrives from the barbarian camp, greater beauties. The plot is, to the with orders to destroy the chief of the last degree, puerile and improbable. Christian slaves, and to depose MonIt seems to have been taken from the talto from the government. In Mancirculating library, which could very fredi he finds his deadly foe, the fawell afford to part with it, for there voured lover of Bellamira, and the are five hundred or five thousand as cause of his disgrace and exile from good left behind. The scene is laid his native land. He separates the at Tunis,—but wherefore, there ap- husband and wife, disgraces and impears no conceivable reason, for all prisons Montalto and Manfredi, and the chief persons are Italians. In fact, takes Bellamira to his palace. Various Chance has brought the five principal scenes ensue between these two chacharacters together, for the sole pur- racters, in which she resists all his pose of affording Mr Sheil an oppor- threats and intreaties, and rejects his tunity of writing a tragedy about proffered love. At this time Tunis is them; and he seems to have chosen attacked by the Spaniards. Sinano is Tunis, in preference to any other wounded in the battle which ensues, place, in order that he might be de- but has still strength left to arrive at livered of certain common-places which the dungeon where he has confined he had conceived, respecting the con- his enemies, in order to destroy them. duct of the European powers, in so He kills Montalto, and is killed by long suffering a herd of vulgar barba- him, but not before Montalto has rians to make slaves of their more po- discovered that Bellamira is his child, lite and civilized Christian neighbours, and Salerno his guilty but repentant who would no doubt have been greatly brother. Tunis is now taken ; and scandalized at doing any thing of the the tragedy closes with the reunion of kind themselves. The plot, which we Manfredi and Bellamira. in part extract from the newspapers, This, as the reader will perceive, is is as follows:

forced and extravagant enough. But Count Manfredi (Mr C. Kemble), in truth, the plot of a tragedy, as well a nobleman of Naples, who is in slave as of any other of the higher species

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