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and penance for erring monks, gether so as to develop the who were made to kneel in it curve of the lowly cone. At with their hands fastened in the side of the outer door of the recess.
This seems a some- the double habitation is a small what far-fetched theory, though recess in the wall, which may tradition not seldom grows either have been a socket for a from a germ of truth. Pos- massive bolt, or may possibly sibly acute observation and have formed a small shelf. It learned research and, like is perhaps not a little to be every other relic in the island, wondered at that, with this is worthy of the best that cement of any kind to keep can be given) may some day the stones in their places, the detect its true original use and walls have preserved for so history.
many centuries even But almost the most re- blance of their original form. markable of the edifices in the If men had never visited the sacred precincts is the only spot since the community forremaining example of the sook their island home, they dwelling - places which were might have been even occupied by the brethren of complete. The winds and the community, and this in- storms that sweep over these
our lonely islets would possibly thoughts back to a legendary have failed to disturb these period. Sadly shattered as it rounded dwellings, which have, is by time, and possibly by like the huts and tents of all careless hands, it has preserved primitive peoples, the exact enough of its original char- shape which best defies the acter to show how rude and assaults of the elements. But simple it originally was, and though the place is deserted to what a long-forgotten type for long periods, shepherds of architecture it belongs. It come here from time to time has been pointed out that it is to gather the cattle, and, using of the same era, and was built the huts for shelter, have by men of the same school, as treated them carelessly, shiftthose who raised the Round ing one stone after another till Towers of Ireland. It is a they have made gaps which double cell, formed of two have widened into semi-ruin. cone-shaped or beehive - like
Near the church, somewhat dwellings meeting and joining apart by itself, and possibly each other, with a low con- rather larger than other dwellnecting square doorway at the ings of like nature in the prepoint of contact. One of these cincts, this double cell may, by is about 13 ft. in diameter, and little stretch of the imagination, the other a little smaller. The be recognised as the one occuwalls of both are, like those of pied by the spiritual head of the the church, of uncemented little settlement, St Columba stones, most deftly laid to- himself, during his frequent
1 See The Ecclesiastical Architecture of Ireland,' &c. By George Petrie.
sung by him.” 1
visits to the island. If so, it most primitive Irish fashion, is the actual place where,
made of withes and branches “while the holy man was sojourn
woven together and supported ing in Hinba island, the grace of holy on wooden poles (the island was inspiration was poured out upon him not then, as now, altogether in an abundant and incomparable destitute of trees). It was not manner, and wonderfully continued for some years after their first with him for three days ; so that, for three days and as many nights, he arrival that the brotherhood remained within a house which was were able to have so much as locked up and filled with celestial a wooden church ; and then, in light, would suffer no man to come order to erect it, it was necesnear him, and neither did eat nor drink. And from this house, mark sary to bring oaks from the you, rays of intense brightness were
forests the neighbouring seen at night, breaking out through mainland shore. But at Hinba, the chinks of the doors and the key
as we have seen, everything was holes. Some spiritual songs also, from the first built of stone. which had not been heard before, were then heard as they were being
be that Hinba was always without vegetation ex
cept pasturage, and that, there A little distance to the west being good store of slaty rock of the church there is a space easily to be fashioned into on which are seen, ranged with building material, the monks some slight appearance of regu- of Irish descent bethought larity, a number of rounded themselves, when church and swellings in the ground, seem- dwellings were to be provided, ing to suggest that here there of the patterns given to them was a village of the beehive- by the works lately seen in shaped cells, now collapsed in their native Ireland. ruin and hidden by soil and On a sun-kissed knoll, hard vegetation. Here and there by the faint traces of the loose, partially-wrought stones monkish village, are the vesstill show that they were at tiges of a cemetery, and, it one time used as building may be presumed, the cemematerials; and careful exam- tery of the monastery. Here ination might yet disclose some are several tombstones, one of cells not entirely destroyed, which, at any rate, is marked and very possibly other inter- with a cross; and if the earth esting and instructive relios.
is probed, other (almost cerAbout the church and all the tainly) monumental slabs are subsidiary buildings of the mon- evident some distance below astery at Hinba, as distinguished the green turf. On this from those of the original parent eminence, tradition tells, establishment at Iona, there was is the grave of Eithne, St this peculiarity of character. Columba's mother, daughter At Iona the buildings construct- of Dimma MacNave, sprung ed by St Columba for himself from the princely house of and his people were, after the Leinster. The highly born
Irishwoman had followed her earth. In the golden light of saintly son, and her bones the sinking sun, Colonsay, were laid in this spot which Oronsay, Isla, Jura, Scarba lie he loved so well.
like jewels on the shimmering In 1824 Dr M‘Culloch, in expanse of waters. To the describing the island, said that north rise, a thousand feet in "at a small distance from the height, the bold basaltic cliffs ruins was the burying-ground, of Mull, with cloud-capped Ben containing many ornamented More peeping over their crests. stones, with remains of crosses, The long space of Loch Linnhe apparently native." A short stretches round eastward tosummer hour gives little oppor- wards the land of Lorne and tunity for exploration, and it is gigantic Cruachan, monarch of easy in a hurried visit to over a wide circle of peaks. It may
that which is fairly be permitted to a Scotsman to obvious; but if these stones and think, Where else can we crosses have remained in the the like? But, surpassingly small “God's acre, some of beautiful as it all is in the them should have caught the clear calm of a glorious summer eye. Can it be that they have afternoon, we cannot forget been removed from their con- that the scene takes a sterner, secrated resting-place to fill an wilder form on most days of obscure niche in some public or the year,—that a very moderate private museum, or is it that breeze will be enough to lash the heedless hand of man has these narrow seas into fury, already hurried them to de- and that, to seafarers, the struction by putting them to towering cliffs and picturesque ignoble uses ?
There is an coast may only present adjacent sheep - fank, which threatening lee shore, unless bore, as it seemed to me, the their craft is stout and well same would-be innocent
We may well marvel pression as that of a dog more how St Columba and his monks than suspected of stealing a made their way from island to mutton-chop. It has evidently island so frequently and with been made in great part from such certainty, and admire the stones that have belonged to skilful daring of their seamanthe old ruins, and it cannot but ship. It would be interesting be feared that it has not alto- indeed to see some of the frail gether respected the burying- barks in which these gallant ground and its monuments. boatmen confidently left port,
Before leaving the Island of and it would probably make the Saints, it is worth while to a modern sailor shudder if stroll to the top of the nearest he were asked to trust himheight and gaze on the pan- self to such bottoms. They orama that lies around, - a were for the most part conpanorama the sight of which structed of osiers, covered with would in itself be ample reward skins, and their size was for the toils of a journey from timated by the number of skins the uttermost parts of the that found a place on the frame.
They had some boats, too, hol- sea, there were many dangers lowed out of the trunks of to be encountered from the trees, such as those which have pirate rovers who infested isbeen found buried in the peat- land and coast, gathering prey bogs of Ireland. But it must both by outrage on the deep be believed that St Columba and by making descents on the and his men had some galleys villages of the shore. The that were reasonably stout and Cormac Doil of “The Lord of had considerable capacity. The the Isles” a lineal deone in which the first voyage scendant and a true representwas made from Ireland to Iona ative of the reivers who frewas, we know, sixty feet long, quented sound and estuary at and carried not only the saint an earlier time. Twice, at and his twelve immediate dis- least, in St Columba's career ciples, but other brethren, he miraculously spoke the doom labourers and sailors. We of such sea-wolves,—once when know, too, that Gaulish mer he announced that Ioan, the chants brought the wines of son of Conall, who had essayed their country for sale in Ire- to murder him in the previous land (even then a taste for year, was at that moment beclaret was a gentlemanly weak- ing killed in battle; and again
among the priests and when, having vainly implored people of the green island), a spoiler to abandon his plunder, and the ships engaged in the he foretold the immediate detrade must have been strong struction by shipwreck of the and seaworthy; so it is very ruthless man who had reft the probable that, though the boats goods from the saint's wellused for fishing and for service loved friend. along the coasts were slight But a low sough of wind is and feeble, it must have been coming up with the evening, possible to charter more solid and it is well that we should and roomy craft for distant leave the island before a swell enterprises. By the way, the sets in from the Atlantic. As sailing rig of the galleys was our boat is pushed off from a cross-yard with a square sail, St Columba's haven, an old and this the monks particularly seal and her young one are esteemed; for they felt that the gambolling at the outlet of the yard was always making over creek. Some folks
that their crow the sign of the their presence so close to the cross.
shore is a presage of a rising And besides the perils of the storm.
RICHARD HARTLEY, PROSPECTOR.
BY DOUGLAS BLACKBURN.
CHAPTER XIV.A DECADENT CHIEF.
WILMOT's first view of the of white men beyond staring kraal which had been the at them. A few girls and headquarters of the truculent women paused in their slugand fearless Magato, but now gish tasks to inquire of the the home of his unworthy induna what the invasion weakling son 'Mpfeu, was dis- meant; but Bulalie was the appointing in the extreme. only representative of the He had listened with intense royal circle who proffered any interest to the stories of the greeting. Like most Transfirst visit of Hartley and Adam vaal Kafirs he spoke a little MʻQueen, and had filled in the of the Taal, and advancing to unrecorded details with the Hartley, informed him that colour of imagination, for it 'Mpfeu was too sleepy to see is rarely that South Africans him that day. In the meancan satisfy the natural crav- time, would he outspan and ing of the new-comer to know take possession of the hut desomething more than their voted to the use of visitors ? bald matter-of-fact narratives Hartley declined the offer. convey.
He had pictured a He knew too much of the native village of clustering horrors of a native hut, reekhuts, of a guileless unclad ing with smoke and the dirt swarm of natives engaged in of a generation, and lighted their primitive but useful only by the forty-inch aperture avocations, and, in the royal that did duty for door and kraal, something approaching window. He told Bulalie that that barbario splendour which he and his friends preferred tradition associates with the to live in their waggon, but semi - savage chieftain in his accepted the green mealies and own stronghold.
Kafir beer brought by one of 'Mpfeu's kraal consisted of the royal wives. less than a dozen grass - built “Is this the village?” Wilbeehive huts, differing no whit mot asked, disgust and disfrom any other of the scores enchantment in his voice, as Wilmot had
as they got under the journey up, and even on the shelter of the waggon-tilt. outskirts of the mine near “ Village ? Surely you know Krugersdorp. Three or four there's no such thing as a Kafir Kafirs lay about doing nothing village in South Africa ?” Hartin particular, and apparently ley answered. “A tribe occutoo destitute of curiosity and pies a large district, not a small energy to recognise the arrival spot. Look there, and there."