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powers of forgetfulness and oblivion. He remembers to the church, and obtained the living of New himself what he has done, and that remembrance tells Machar, Aberdeenshire. In 1752 he was appointed him that other people must likewise remember it. professor of moral philosophy in King's college, Amidst all the gaudy pomp of the most ostentatious Aberdeen, which he quitted in 1763 for the chair greatness, amidst the venal and vile adulation of the of moral philosophy in Glasgow. He died on the great and of the learned, amidst the more innocent | 7th of October 1796. though more foolish acclamations of the common people, amidst all the pride of conquest and the
LORD KAMES. triumph of successful war, he is still secretly pursued by the avenging furies of shame and remorse ; and HENRY HOME (1696–1782), a Scottish lawyer and while glory seems to surround him on all sides, he judge, in which latter capacity he took, according to himself, in his own imagination, sees black and foul a custom of his country, the designation of Lord infamy fast pursuing him, and every moment ready Kames, was a conspicuous member of the literary to overtake him from behind. Even the great Cæsar, though he had the magnanimity to dismiss his guards, could not dismiss his suspicions. The remembrance of Pharsalia still haunted and pursued him. When, at the request of the senate, he had the generosity to pardon Marcellus, he told that assembly that he was not unaware of the designs which were carrying on against his life; but that, as he had lived long enough both for nature and for glory, he was contented to die, and therefore despised all conspiracies. He had, perhaps, lived long enough for nature ; but the man who felt himself the object of such deadly resentment, from those whose favour he wished to gain, and whom he still wished to consider as his friends, had certainly lived too long for real glory, or for all the happiness which he could ever hope to enjoy in the love and esteem of his equals.
DR REID. DR Reid's Inquiry into the Human Mind, published in 1764, was an attack on the ideal theory, and on the sceptical conclusions which Hume deduced from it. The author had the candour to submit it to Hume before publication, and the latter, with his usual complacency and good nature, acknowledged the merit of the treatise. In 1785 Reid published his Essays on the Intellectual Powers of Man, and in 1788 those on the Active Powers. The merit of Reid as a correct reasoner and original thinker on
House of Lord Kames, Canongate, Edinburgh. moral science, free from the jargon of the schools, and philosophical society assembled in Edinburgh and basing his speculations on inductive reasoning, during the latter part of the eighteenth century. has been generally admitted. The ideal theory which During the earlier part of his life he devoted the he combated, taught that nothing is perceived but whole powers of an acute and reflective mind, and what is in the mind which perceives it; that we with an industry calling for the greatest praise, to really do not perceive things that are external, but his profession, and compilations and treatises cononly certain images and pictures of them imprinted nected with it. But the natural bent of his faculties upon the mind, which are called impressions and towards philosophical disquisition—the glory if not ideas.' This doctrine Reid had himself believed, the vice of his age and country—at length took the till, finding it led to important consequences, he mastery, and, after reaching the bench in 1752, he asked himself the question, What evidence have I gave his leisure almost exclusively to metaphysifor this doctrine, that all the objects of my know- cal and ethical subjects. His first work of this ledge are ideas in my own mind ?' He set about an kind, Essays on the Principles of Morality and Natuinquiry, but could find no evidence for the principle,ral Religion, combats those theories of human nature he says, excepting the authority of philosophers which deduce all actions from some single principle, Dugald Stewart says of Reid, that it is by the logi- and attempts to establish several principles of accal rigour of his method of investigating metaphy- tion. He here maintained philosophical necessity, sical subjects (imperfectly understood even by the but in a connection with the duties of morality and disciples of Locke), still more than by the impor- religion, which he hoped might save him from the tance of his particular conclusions, that he stands obloquy bestowed on other defenders of that doc80 conspicuously distinguished among those who trine; an expectation in which he was partially have hitherto prosecuted analytically the study of disappointed, as he narrowly escaped a citation be man. In the dedication of his • Inquiry, Reid in- fore the General Assembly of his native church, on cidentally makes a definition which strikes us as account of this book. very happy :- The productions of imagination,' he The Introduction to the Art of Thinking, published says, 'require a genius which soars above the com- in 1761, was a small and subordinate work, consistmon rank; but the treasures of knowledge are coming mainly of a series of detached maxims and genemonly buried deep, and may be reached by those ral observations on human conduct, illustrated by drudges who can dig with labour and patience, anecdotes drawn from the stores of history and though they have not wings to fly.' Dr Reid was biography. In the ensuing year appeared a larger a native of Strachan, in Kincardineshire, where he work, perhaps the best of all his compositions—The was born on the 26th of April 1710. He was bred | Elements of Criticism, three volumes, a bold and original performance, which, discarding all arbitrary ing, touching, and smelling; for the latter feelings, rules of literary criticism derived from authority, seeining to exist externally at the organ of sense, are seeks for a proper set of rules in the fundamental conceived to be merely corporeal. principles of human nature itself. Dugald Stewart The pleasures of the eye and the ear being thus admits this to be the first systematic attempt to elevated above those of the other external senses, acinvestigate the metaphysical principles of the fine quire so much dignity, as to become a laudable enter. arts.
tainment. They are not, however, set on a level with Lord Kames had, for many years, kept a common- the purely intellectual, being no less inferior in digplace book, into which he transcribed all anecdotes nity to intellectual pleasures, than superior to the of man, in his various nations and degrees of civili- organic or corporeal : they indeed resemble the latter, sation, which occurred in the course of his reading, being, like them, produced by external objects; but or appeared in the fugitive publications of the day. they also resemble the former, being, like them, proWhen advanced to near eighty years of age, he duced without any sensible organic impression. Their threw these together in a work entitled Sketches of mixed nature and middle place between organic and the History of Man (two vols., 4to., 1773), which intellectual pleasures qualify them to associate with shows his usual ingenuity and acuteness, and pre- both; beauty heightens all the organic feelings, as sents many curious disquisitions on society, but is well as the intellectual ; harmony, though it aspires materially reduced in value by the absence of a to inflame devotion, disdains not to improve the relish proper authentication to many of the statements of a banquet. presented in it as illustrations. A volume, entitled The pleasures of the eye and the ear have other Loose Hints on Education, published in 1781, and in valuable properties beside those of dignity and elevawhich he anticipates some of the doctrines on that tion; being sweet and moderately exhilarating, they subject which have since been in vogue, completes are in their tone equally distant from the turbulence the list of his philosophical works.
of passion and the languor of indolence; and by that Lord Kames was also distinguished as an amateur tone are perfectly well qualified not only to revive agriculturist and improver of land, and some opera- the spirits when sunk by sensual gratification, but also tions, devised by him for clearing away a superin- to relax them when overstrained in any violent purcumbent moss from his estate by means of water suit. Here is a remedy provided for many distresses ; raised from a neighbouring river, help to mark the and to be convinced of its salutary effects, it will be originality and boldness of his conceptions. This suthcient to run over the following particulars. Ortaste led to his producing, in 1777, a volume entitled ganic pieasures have naturally a short duration ; when The Gentleman Farmer, which he has himself suffi- prolonged, they lose their relish ; when indulged to ciently described as “an attempt to improve agricul. excess, they beget satiety and disgust; and to restore ture by subjecting it to the test of rational prin contrived than the exhilarating pleasures of the eye
a proper tone of mind, nothing can be more happily ciples.' Lord Kames was a man of commanding aspect intellectual powers becomes painful by overstraining
and ear. On the other hand, any intense exercise of and figure, but easy and familiar manners. He was the life and soul of every private company, and it stant relief ; it is necessary that the void be filled with
the mind; cessation from such exercise gives nov inwas remarked of him that no subject seemed too great or too frivolous to derive lustre from his re- pleasure, which hath no relish but while we are in
some amusement, gently relaxing the spirits: organic marks upon it. The taste and thought of his philo- vigour, is ill qualified for that office; but the finer sophical works have now placed them out of fashion, but they contain many views and reflections from the mind, are finely qualified to restore its usual tone
pleasures of sense, which occupy, without exhausting, which modern inquirers might derive advantage.
after severe application to study or business, as well
as after satiety from sensual gratification. [Pleasures of the Eye and the Ear.)
Our first perceptions are of external objects, and
our first attachments are to them. Organic pleasures That nothing external is perceived till first it make take the lead; but the mind gradually ripening, rean impression upon the organ of sense, is an observa- lisheth more and more the pleasures of the eye and tion that holds equally in every one of the external ear, which approach the purely mental without ex
But there is a difference as to our knowledge hausting the spirits, and exceed the purely sensual of that impression ; in touching, tasting, and smelling, without danger of satiety. The pleasures of the eye we are sensible of the impression; that, for example, and ear have accordingly & natural aptitude to draw which is made upon the hand by a stone, upon the us from the immoderate gratification of sensual appepalate by an apricot, and upon the nostrils by a rose. tite; and the mind, once accustomed to enjoy a variety It is otherwise in seeing and hearing; for I am not of external objects without being sensible of the organic sensible of the impression made upon my eye when I impression, is prepared for enjoying internal objects behold a tree, nor of the impression made upon my where there cannot be an organic impression. Thus ear when I listen to a song. That difference in the the Author of nature, by qualifying the human mind manner of perceiving external objects, distinguisheth for a succession of enjoyments from low to high, leads remarkably hearing and seeing from the other senses; it by gentle steps from the most grovelling corporeal and I am ready to show that it distinguisheth still pleasures, for which only it is fitted in the beginning more remarkably the feelings of the former from that of life, to those refined and sublime pleasures that are of the latter; every feeling, pleasant or painful, must suited to its maturity. be in the mind; and yet, because in tasting, touching, But we are not bound down to this succession by and smelling, we are sensible of the impression made any law of necessity: the God of nature offers it to upon the organ, we are led to place there also the us in order to advance our happiness; and it is suffipleasant or painful feeling caused by that impression; cient that he hath enabled us to carry it on in a but, with respect to seeing and hearing, being insen- natural course, Nor has he made our task either sible of the organic impression, we are not misled to disagreeable or difficult: on the contrary, the transiassign a wrong place to the pleasant or painful feel- tion is sweet and easy from corporeal pleasures to the ings caused by that impression; and therefore we more refined pleasures of sense; and no less so from naturally place them in the mind, where they really these to the exalted pleasures of morality and reli: are; upon that account they are conceived to be more gion. We stand therefore engaged in honour as well refined and spiritual than what are derived from tast- | as interest, to second the purposes of nature by culti
vating the pleasures of the eye and ear, those espe- Essays on Poetry, Music, 8c. He also published a cially that require extraordinary culture, such as digest of his college lectures, under the title of Elearise from poetry, painting, sculpture, music, garden- ments of Moral Science. In these works, though not ing, and architecture. This especially is the duty of profoundly philosophical, the author's 'lively relish the opulent, who have leisure to improve their minds for the sublime and beautiful, his clear and elegant and their feelings. The fine arts are contrived to give style,' and his happy quotations and critical exampleasure to the eye and the ear, disregarding the in- ples, must strike every reader. ferior senses. A taste for these arts is a plant that grows naturally in many soils; but without culture,
[On the Love of Nature.] scarce to perfection in any soil : it is susceptible of much refinement, and is by proper care greatly im
(From 'Beattie's Essays.'] proved. In this respect a taste in the fine arts goes Homer's beautiful description of the heavens and hand in hand with the moral sense, to which indeed earth, as they appear in a calm evening by the light of it is nearly allied : both of them discover what is right the moon and stars, concludes with this circumstance and what is wrong : fashion, temper, and education, - And the heart of the shepherd is glad.' Madame have an influence to vitiate both, or to preserve them Dacier, from the turn she gives to the passage in her pure and untainted: neither of them are arbitrary version, seems to think, and Pope, in order perhaps nor local, being rooted in human nature, and govern- to make out his couplet, insinuates, that the gladness ed by principles common to all men. The design of of the shepherd is owing to his sense of the utility of the present undertaking, which aspires not to morality, ) those luminaries. And this may in part be the case ; is to examine the sensitive branch of human nature, but this is not in Homer ; nor is it a necessary consito trace the objects that are naturally agreeable, as deration. It is true that, in contemplating the mawell as those that are naturally disagreeable; and by terial universe, they who discern the causes and effects these means to discover, if we can, what are the genuine of things must be more rapturously entertained than principles of the fine arts. The man who aspires to those who perceive nothing but shape and size, colour be a critic in these arts must pierce still deeper ; he and motion. Yet, in the mere outside of nature's must acquire a clear perception of what objects are works (if I may so express myself), there is a splenlofty, what low, what proper or improper, what manly, dour and a magnificence to which even untutored minds and what mean or trivial ; hence a foundation for cannot attend without great delight. reasoning upon the taste of any individual, and for Not that all peasants or all philosophers are equally passing a sentence upon it: where it is conformable susceptible of these charming impressions. It is strange to principles, we can pronounce with certainty that it to observe the callousness of some men, before whom is correct; otherwise, that it is incorrect and perhaps all the glories of heaven and earth pass in daily suc. whimsical. Thus the fine arts, like morals, become a cession, without touching their hearts, elevating their rational science; and, like morals, may be cultivated fancy, or leaving any durable remembrance. Even of to a high degree of refinement.
those who pretend to sensibility, how many are there Manifold are the advantages of criticism when thus to whom the lustre of the rising or setting sun, the studied as a rational science. In the first place, a sparkling concave of the midnight sky, the mountain thorough acquaintance with the principles of the fine forest tossing and roaring to the storm, or warbling arts redoubles the pleasure we derive from them. To with all the melodies of a summer evening; the sweet the man who resigns himself to feeling, without inter- interchange of hill and dale, shade and sunshine, posing any judgment, poetry, music, painting, are grore, lawn, and water, which an extensive landscape mere pastime. In the prime of life, indeed, they are offers to the view; the scenery of the ocean, so lovely
, delightful, being supported by the force of novelty and so majestic, and so tremendous, and the many pleasthe heat of imagination ; but in time they lose their ing varieties of the animal and vegetable kingdom, relish, and are generally neglected in the maturity of could never afford so much real satisfaction as the life, which disposes to more serious and more import- steams and noise of a ball-room, the insipid fiddling ant occupations. To those who deal in criticism as a and squeaking of an opera, or the vexations and regular science governed by just principles, and giving wranglings of a card-table! scope to judgment as well as to fancy, the fine arts are But some minds there are of a different make, who, a favourite entertainment, and in old age maintain even in the early part of life, receive from the conthat relish which they produce in the morning of life. templation of nature a species of delight which they
would hardly exchange for any other; and who, as avarice and ambition are not the infirmities of that
period, would, with equal sincerity and rapture, es. Among the answerers of Hume was Dr BEATTIE claimthe poet, who, in 1770, published his Essay on the * I care not, Fortune, what you me deny ; Nature and Immutability of Truth, in opposition to
You cannot rob me of free nature's grace ;
You cannot shut the windows of the sky, Sophistry and Scepticism. Inferior to most of the
Through which Aurora shows her brightening face; metaphysicians in logical precision, equanimity of You cannot bar my constant feet to trace temper, or patient research, Beattie brought great The woods and lawns by living stream at eve.' zeal and fervour to his task, a respectable share of Such minds have always in them the seeds of true philosophical knowledge, and a better command of taste, and frequently of imitative genius. At least
, popular language and imaginative illustration than though their enthusiastic or visionary turn of mind, most of his fellow-labourers in that dry and dusty as the man of the world would call it, should not field. These qualities, joined to the pious and bene- always incline them to practise poetry or painting, we ficial tendency of his work, enabled him to produce need not scruple to affirm
that, without some portion a highly popular treatise. No work of the kind was of this enthusiasm, no person ever became a true poet ever so successful. It has fallen into equal neglect or painter. For he who would imitate the works of with other metaphysical treatises of the age, and is nature, must first accurately observe them, and accu. now considered unworthy the talents of its author. rate observation is to be expected from those only who It has neither the dignity nor the acumen of the take great pleasure in it. original philosopher, and is unsuited to the ordinary To a mind thus disposed, no part of creation is inreligious reader. The best of Beattie's prose works different. In the crowded city and howling wilderare his Dissertations, Moral and Critical, and his ness, in the cultivated province and solitary isle, in
the flowery lawn and craggy mountain, in the mur- fishes sporting in the woods, and elephants walking mur of the rivulet and in the uproar of the ocean, in on the sea. Could such figures and combinations give the radiance of summer and gloom of winter, in the pleasure, or merit the appellation of sublime or beauthunder of heaven and in the whisper of the breeze, tiful? Should we hesitate to pronounce their author he still finds something to rouse or to soothe his mad? And are the absurdities of madmen proper imagination, to draw forth his affections, or to employ subjects either of amusement or of imitation to rcahis understanding. And from every mental energy sonable beings ? that is not attended with pain, and even from some of those that are, as moderate terror and pity, a sound
(On Scottish Music.] mind derives satisfaction ; exercise being equally necessary to the body and the soul, and to both equally
(From the same.] productive of health and pleasure.
There is a certain style of melody peculiar to each This happy sensibility to the beauties of nature musical country, which the people of that country are should be cherished in young persons. It engages apt to prefer to every other style. That they should them to con template the Creator in his wonderful prefer their own, is not surprising; and that the meworks ; it purifies and harmonises the soul, and pre- lody of one people should differ from that of another, pares it for moral and intellectual discipline; it sup- is not more surprising, perhaps, than that the language plies & never-failing source of amusement; it contri- of one people should differ from that of another. But butes even to bodily health; and, as a strict analogy there is something not unworthy of notice in the parsubsists between material and moral beauty, it leads ticular expression and style that characterise the music the heart by an easy transition from the one to the of one nation or province, and distinguish it from every other, and thus recommends virtue for its transcen- other sort of music. Of this diversity Scotland supdent loveliness, and makes vice appear the object of plies a striking example. The native melody of the contempt and abomination. An intimate acquaint- Highlands and Western Isles is as different from that ance with the best descriptive poets-Spenser, Milton, of the southern part of the kingdom as the Irish or and Thomson, but above all with the divine Georgic— Erse language is different from the English or Scotch. joined to some practice in the art of drawing, will in the conclusion of a discourse on music, as it relates promote this amiable sensibility in early years; for to the mind, it will not perhaps be impertinent to then the face of nature has novelty superadded to its offer a conjecture on the cause of these peculiarities ; other charms, the passions are not pre-engaged, the which, though it should not-and indeed I am satisheart is free from care, and the imagination warm and fied that it will not-fully account for any one of romantic.
them, may, however, incline the reader to think that But not to insist longer on those ardent emotions they are not unaccountable, and may also throw some that are peculiar to the enthusiastic disciple of faint light on this part of philosophy. nature, may it not be affirmed of all men without Every thought that partakes of the nature of passion exception, or at least of all the enlightened part of has a correspondent expression in the look and gesmankind, that they are gratified by the contemplation ture; and so strict is the union between the passion of things natural as opposed to unnatural ? Mon- and its outward sign, that, where the former is not in strous sights please but for a moment, if they please some degree felt, the latter can never be perfectly at all; for they derive their charm from the beholder's natural, but if assumed, becomes awkward mimicry, amazement, which is quickly over. I have read, in- instead of that genuine imitation of nature which deed, of a man of rank in Sicily who chooses to adorn draws forth the sympathy of the beholder. If therehis villa with pictures and statues of most unnatural fore there be, in the circumstances of particular deformity; but it is a singular instance; and one nations or persons, anything that gives a peculiarity would not be much more surprised to hear of a person to their passions and thoughts, it seems reasonable to living without food, or growing fat by the use of expect that they will also have something peculiar in poison. To say of anything that it is contrary to the expression of their countenance and even in the nature, denotes censure and disgust on the part of the form of their features. Caius Marius, Jugurtha, speaker ; as the epithet natural intimates an agree- Tamerlane, and some other great warriors, are celeable quality, and seems for the most part to imply brated for a peculiar ferocity of aspect, which they that a thing is as it ought to be, suitable to our own had no doubt contracted from a perpetual and unretaste, and congenial with our own constitution. Think strained exertion of fortitude, contempt, and other with what sentiments we should peruse a poem in violent emotions. These produced in the face their which nature was totally misrepresented, and prin- correspondent expressions, which, being often repeated, ciples of thought and of operation supposed to take became at last as habitual to the features as the senplace repugnant to everything we had seen or heard timents they arose from were to the heart. Savages, of; in which, for example, avarice and coldnegs were whose thoughts are little inured to control, have more ascribed to youth, and prodigality and passionate of this significancy of look than those men who, being attachment to the old ; in which men were made to born and bred in civilised nations, are accustomed act at random, sometimes according to character, from their childhood to suppress every emotion that and sometimes contrary to it; in which cruelty and tends to interrupt the peace of society. And while envy were productive of love, and beneficence and the bloom of youth lasts, and the smoothness of feakind affection of hatred; in which beauty was in- ture peculiar to that period, the human face is less Fariably the object of dislike, and ugliness of desire; marked with any strong character than in old age. in which society was rendered happy by atheism and A peevish or surly stripling may elude the eye of the the promiscuous perpetration of crimes, and justice physiognomist; but a wicked old man, whose visage and fortitude were held in universal contempt. Or does not betray the evil temperature of his heart, must think how we should relish a painting where no have more cunning than it would be prudent for him regard was had to the proportions, colours, or any of to acknowledge. Even by the trade or profession the the physical laws of nature; where the ears and eyes human countenance may be characterised. They who of animals were placed in their shoulders; where the employ themselves in the nicer mechanic arts, that sky was green, and the grass crimson ; where trees require the earnest attention of the artist, do genegrew with their branches in the earth, and their roots rally contract a fixedness of feature suited to that one in the air; where men were seen fighting after their uniform sentiment which engrosses them while at heads were cut off, ships sailing on the land, lions en- work. Whereas other artists, whose work requires tangled in cobwebs, sheep preying on dead carcases, I less attention, and who may ply their trade and
amuse themselves with conversation at the same time, ing with the fall of torrents; a soil so rugged, and a have, for the most part, smoother and more unmeaning climate so dreary, as in many parts to admit neither faces: their thoughts are more miscellaneous, and the amusements of pasturage nor the labours of agritherefore their features are less fixed in one uniform culture; the mournful dashing of waves along the configuration. A keen penetrating look indicates firths and lakes that intersect the country; the porthoughtfulness and spirit: a dull torpid countenance tentous noises which every change of the wind and is not often accompanied with great sagacity. every increase and diminution of the waters is apt to
This, though there may be many an exception, is raise in a lonely region, full of echoes, and rocks, and in general true of the visible signs of our passions; caverns; the grotesque and ghastly appearance of and it is no less true of the audible. A man habitu- such a landscape by the light of the moon. Objects ally peevish, or passionate, or querulous, or imperious, like these diffuse a gloom over the fancy, which may may be known by the sound of his voice, as well as be compatible enough with occasional and social by his physiognomy. May we not go a step farther, merriment, but cannot fail to tincture the thoughts and say that if a man, under the influence of any of a native in the hour of silence and solitude. If passion, were to compose a discourse, or a poem, or a these people, notwithstanding their reformation in retune, his work would in some measure exhibit an ligion, and more frequent intercourse with strangers, image of his mind? I could not easily be persuaded do still retain many of their old superstitions, we need that Swift and Juvenal were men of sweet tempers ; not doubt but in former times they must have been or that Thomson, Arbuthnot, and Prior, were iil- more enslaved to the horrors of imagination, when be natured. The airs of Felton are so uniformly mourn- set with the bugbears of popery and the darkness of ful, that I cannot suppose him to have been a merry paganism. Most of their superstitions are of a meor even a cheerful man. If a musician, in deep lancholy cast. That second sight wherewith some affliction, were to attempt to compose a lively air, I of them are still supposed to be haunted, is considered believe he would not succeed: though I confess I do by themselves as a misfortune, on account of the many not well understand the nature of the connection that dreadful images it is said to obtrude upon the fancy. may take place between a mournful mind and a me. I have been told that the inhabitants of some of the lancholy tune. It is easy to conceive how a poet or Alpine regions do likewise lay claim to a sort of second an orator should transfuse his passions into his work; sight. Nor is it wonderful that persons of lively for every passion suggests ideas congenial to its own imagination, immured in deep solitude, and surnature; and the composition of the poet or of the rounded with the stupendous scenery of clouds, preorator must necessarily consist of those ideas that cipices, and torrents, should dream, even when they occur at the time he is composing. But musical think themselves awake, of those few striking ideas sounds are not the signs of ideas; rarely are they even with which their lonely lives are diversified; of the imitations of natural sounds ; so that I am at a corpses, funeral processions, and other objects of terloss to conceive how it should happen that a musician, ror; or of marriages and the arrival of strangers, and overwhelmed with sorrow, for example, should put such like matters of more agreeable curiosity. Let it together a series of notes whose expression is contrary be observed, also, that the ancient Highlanders of Scotto that of another series which he had put together land had hardly any other way of supporting themwhen elevated with joy. But of the fact I am not selves than by hunting, fishing, or war, professions that doubtful; though I have not sagacity or knowledge are continually exposed to fatal accidents. And hence, of music enough to be able to explain it. And my no doubt, additional horrors would often baunt their opinion in this matter is warranted by that of a more solitude, and a deeper gloom overshadow the imagi. competent judge, who says, speaking of church volun- nation even of the hardiest native. taries, that if the organist do not feel in himself the What then would it be reasonable to expect from divine energy of devotion, he will labour in vain to the fanciful tribe, from the musicians and poets, of raise it in others. Nor can he hope to throw out those such a region? Strains expressive of joy, tranquil
. happy instantaneous thoughts which sometimes far lity, or the softer passions? No: their style must have exceed the best concerted compositions, and which the been better suited to their circumstances. And s enraptured performer would gladly secure to his future we find in fact that their music is. The wildest irre use and pleasure, did they not as fleetly escape as gularity appears in its composition : the expression is they rise. A man who has made music the study of warlike and melancholy, and approaches even to the his life, and is well acquainted with all the best ex- terrible. And that their poetry is almost uniformly amples of style and expression that are to be found in mournful, and their views of nature dark and dreary, the works of former masters, may, by memory and will be allowed by all who admit of the authenticity much practice, attain a sort of mechanical dexterity of Ossian ; and not doubted by any who believe those in contriving music suitable to any given passion; fragments of Highland poetry to be genuine, which but such music would, I presume, be vulgar and many old people, now alive, of that country, remem. spiritless compared to what an artist of genius throws ber to have heard in their youth, and were then taught out when under the power of any ardent emotion. It to refer to a pretty high antiquity. is recorded of Lulli, that once when his imagination Some of the southern provinces of Scotland present was all on fire with some verses descriptive of terrible a very different prospect. Smooth and lofty hills ideas, which he had been reading in a French tragedy, covered with verdure ; clear streams winding through he ran to his harpsichord, and struck off such a com- long and beautiful valleys; trees produced without bination of sounds, that the company felt their hair culture, here straggling or single, and there crowding stand on end with horror.
into little groves and bowers, with other circumLet us therefore suppose it proved, or, if you please, stances peculiar to the districts I allude to, render take it for granted, that different sentiments in the them fit for pasturage, and favourable to romantic mind of the musician will give different and peculiar leisure and tender passions. Several of the old Scotch expressions to his music; and upon this principle it songs take their names from the rivulets, villages, and will not perhaps be impossible to account for some of hills adjoining to the Tweed near Melrose; a region the phenomena of a national ear.
distinguished by many charming varieties of rural The Highlands of Scotland are a picturesque, but scenery, and which, whether we consider the face of in general a melancholy country. Long tracts of the country or the genius of the people, may properly mountainous desert, corered with dark heath, and enough be termed the Arcadia of Scotland. And all often obscured by misty weather; narrow valleys, these songs are sweetly and powerfully expressive of thinly inhabited, and bounded by precipices resound" | love and tenderness, and other emotions suited to the