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Spread his broad nostrils to the wind,
Listed before, aside, behind,

Then couch'd him down beside the hind,
And quaked among the mountain fern,
To hear that sound so dull and stern.'




Ashestiel, Ettrick Forest.

LIKE April morning clouds, that pass,
With varying shadow, o'er the grass,
And imitate, on field and furrow,
Life's checker'd scene of joy and sorrow;
Like streamlet of the mountain north,
Now in a torrent racing forth,
Now winding slow its silver train,
And almost slumbering on the plain;
Like breezes of the autumn day,
Whose voice inconstant dies away,
And ever swells again as fast,
When the ear deems its murmur past;
Thus various, my romantic theme
Flits, winds, or sinks, a morning dream.
Yet pleased, our eye pursues the trace
Of Light and Shade's inconstant race;
Pleased, views the rivulet afar,
Weaving its maze irregular;
And pleased, we listen as the breeze

Heaves its wild sigh through Autumn trees;
Then, wild as cloud, or stream, or gale,
Flow on, flow unconfined, my Tale!

Need I to thee, dear Erskine, tell I love the license all too well, In sounds now lowly, and now strong, To raise the desultory song?— Oft, when 'mid such capricious chime, Some transient fit of lofty rhyme

1 "The sound of the knell that was rung for the parting soul of this victim of seduction, is described with great force and solemnity."--JEFFREY.

"The whole of this trial and doom presents a high-wrought scene of horror, which, at the close, rises almost to too great a pitch."-Scots Mag., March, 1808.

2 William Erskine, Esq., advocate, Sheriff-depute of the Orkneys, became a Judge of the Court of Session by the title of Lord Kinnedder, and died at Edinburgh in August, 1822. He had been from early youth the most intimate of the Poet's friends, and his chief confidant and adviser as to all literary matters. See a notice of his life and character by the late Mr.

To thy kind judgment seem'd excuse
For many an error of the muse,
Oft hast thou said, "If, still misspent,
Thine hours to poetry are lent,*
Go, and to tame thy wandering course,
Quaff from the fountain at the source;
Approach those masters, o'er whose tomb
Immortal laurels ever bloom:

Instructive of the feebler bard,

Still from the grave their voice is heard; From them, and from the paths they show'd, Choose honor'd guide and practised road; Nor ramble on through brake and maze, With harpers rude of barbarous days.

"Or deem'st thou not our later time Yields topic meet for classic rhyme? Hast thou no elegiac verse

For Brunswick's venerable hearse ?
What! not a line, a tear, a sigh,
When valor bleeds for liberty?—
Oh, hero of that glorious time,
When, with unrivall'd light sublime,—
Though martial Austria, and though all
The might of Russia, and the Gaul,
Though banded Europe stood her foes,-
The star of Brandenburgh arose !
Thou couldst not live to see her beam
Forever quench'd in Jena's stream.
Lamented Chief!-it was not given
To thee to change the doom of Heaven,
And crush that dragon in its birth,
Predestined scourge of guilty earth.
Lamented Chief!-not thine the power,
To save in that presumptuous hour,
When Prussia hurried to the field,

And snatch'd the spear, but left the shield!
Valor and skill 'twas thine to try,
And, tried in vain, 'twas thine to die.

Ill had it seem'd thy silver hair

The last, the bitterest pang to share,
For princedoms reft, and scutcheons riven,
And birthrights to usurpers given;
Thy land's, thy children's wrongs to feel,
And witness woes thou couldst not heal!
On thee relenting Heaven bestows

Hay Donaldson, to which Sir Walter Scott contributed several paragraphs.-ED.

MS." With sound now lowly, and now higher,
Irregular to wake the lyre."

MS.-"Thine hours to thriftless rhyme are lent."
MS.-"Dost thou not deem our later day
Yields topic meet for classic lay?
Hast thou no elegiac tone
To join that universal moan,

Which mingled with the battle's yell,

Where venerable Brunswick fell ?-
What! not a verse, a tear, a sigh,
When valor bleeds for liberty ?"

For honor'd life an honor'd close;1
And when revolves, in time's sure change,
The hour of Germany's revenge,
When, breathing fury for her sake,
Some new Arminius shall awake,
Her champion, ere he strike, shall come
To whet his sword on BRUNSWICK'S tomb.2

"Or of the Red-Cross hero' teach, Dauntless in dungeon as on breach: Alike to him the sea, the shore, The brand, the bridle, or the oar: Alike to him the war that calls Its votaries to the shatter'd walls, Which the grim Turk, besmear'd with blood, Against the Invincible made good;

Or that, whose thundering voice could wake
The silence of the polar lake,

When stubborn Russ, and metal'd Swede,
On the warp'd wave their death-game play'd;
Or that, where Vengeance and Affright
Howl'd round the father of the fight,
Who snatch'd, on Alexandria's sand,
The conqueror's wreath, with dying hand.

"Or, if to touch such chord be thine,
Restore the ancient tragic line,
And emulate the notes that wrung
From the wild harp, which silent hung
By silver Avon's holy shore,

Till twice an hundred years roll'd o'er;
When she, the bold Enchantress," came,
With fearless hand and heart on flame!
From the pale willow snatch'd the treasure,
And swept it with a kindred measure,
Till Avon swans, while rung the grove
With Montfort's hate and Basil's love,

1 MS.-"For honor'd life an honor'd close-
The boon which falling heroes crave,
A soldier's death, a warrior's grave.
Or if, with more exulting swell,
Of conquering chiefs thou lov'st to tell,
Give to the harp an unheard strain,
And sing the triumphs of the main-
Of him the Red-Cross hero teach,
Dauntless on Acre's bloody breach,
And, scorner of tyrannic power,
As dauntless in the Temple's tower:
Alike to him, the sea, the shore,
The brand, the bridle, or the onr,

The general's eye, the pilot's art,

The soldier's arm, the sailor's heart.

Or if to touch such chord be thine," &c.


7" Scott seems to have communicated fragments of the very freely during the whole of its progress. As early as the 221 February, 1807, I find Mrs. Hayman acknowledging, in the name of the Princess of Wales, the receipt of a copy of the Introduction to Canto III., in which occurs the tribute to her royal highness's heroic father, mortally wounded the year before at Jena-a tribute so grateful to her feelings that she herself shortly after sent the poet an elegant silver vase as a

Awakening at the inspired strain,
Deem'd their own Shakspeare lived again."

Thy friendship thus thy judgment wronging, With praises not to me belonging,

In task more meet for mightiest powers,
Wouldst thou engage my thriftless hours.
But say, my Erskine, hast thou weigh'd
That secret power by all obey'd,
Which warps not less the passive mind,
Its source conceal'd or undefined;
Whether an impulse, that has birth
Soon as the infant wakes on earth,
One with our feelings and our powers,
And rather part of us than ours;
Or whether fitlier term'd the sway
Of habit, form'd in early day?
Howe'er derived, its force confest
Rules with despotic sway the breast,
And drags us on by viewless chain,
While taste and reason plead in vain.
Look east, and ask the Belgian why,
Beneath Batavia's sultry sky,
He seeks not eager to inhale
The freshness of the mountain gale,
Content to rear his whiten'd wall
Beside the dank and dull canal?
He'll say, from youth he loved to see
The white sail gliding by the tree.
Or see yon weather beaten hind,
Whose sluggish herds before him wind,
Whose tatter'd plaid and rugged cheek
His northern clime and kindred speak;
Through England's laughing meads he goes,
And England's wealth around him flows;
Ask, if it would content him well,

At ease in those gay plains to dwell,

memorial of her thankfulness. And about the same time the Marchioness of Abercorn expresses the delight with which both she and her lord had read the generous verses on Pitt and Fox in another of those epistles."-Life of Scott, vol. iii. p. 9 3 Sir Sidney Smith.

4 Sir Ralph Abercromby.

5 Joanna Baillie.

6" As man, perhaps, the moment of his breath,
Receives the lurking principle of death;

The young disease, that must subdue at length,
Grows with his growth, and strengthens with his strength.
So, cast and mingled with his very frame,

The Mind's disease, its RULING PASSION, came;
Each vital humor which should feed the whole,
Soon flows to this, in body and in soul;
Whatever warms the heart, or fills the head,
As the mind opens, and its functions spread,
Imagination plies her dangerous art,
And pours it all upon the peccant part.

"Nature its mother, Habit is its nurse;
Wit, Spirit, Faculties, but make it worse;
Reason itself but gives it edge and power;
As Heaven's blest beam turns vinegar more sour," &c.
POPE'S Essay on Man.-ED.

Where hedge-rows spread a verdant screen,
And spires and forests intervene,
And the neat cottage peeps between?
No! not for these will he exchange
His dark Lochaber's boundless range:
Not for fair Devon's meads forsake
Bennevis gray, and Garry's lake.

Thus while I ape the measure wild
Of tales that charm'd me yet a child,
Rude though they be, still with the chime
Return the thoughts of early time;
And feelings, roused in life's first day,
Glow in the line, and prompt the lay.
Then rise those crags, that mountain tower,
Which charm'd my fancy's wakening hour.1
Though no broad river swept along,
To claim, perchance, heroic song;
Though sigh'd no groves in summer gale,
To prompt of love a softer tale;
Though scarce a puny streamlet's speed
Claim'd homage from a shepherd's reed;
Yet was poetic impulse given,

By the green hill and clear blue heaven.
It was a barren scene, and wild,
Where naked cliffs were rudely piled;
But ever and anon between

Lay velvet tufts of loveliest green;
And well the lonely infant knew
Recesses where the wall-flower grew,'
And honeysuckle loved to crawl
Up the low crag and ruin'd wall.

I deem'd such nooks the sweetest shade
The sun in all its round survey'd;
And still I thought that shatter'd tower3
The mightiest work of human power:
And marvell'd as the aged hind

With some strange tale bewitch'd my mind,
Of forayers, who, with headlong force,
Down from that strength had spurr'd their horse,
Their southern rapine to renew,
Far in the distant Cheviots blue,
And, home returning, fill'd the hall
With revel, wassel-rout, and brawl.'
Methought that still with trump and clang,
The gateway's broken arches rang;
Methought grim features, seam'd with scars,
Glared through the window's rusty bars,

1 MS.-"The lonely hill, the rocky tower,

That caught attention's wakening hour."
MS.-" Recesses where the woodbine grew."

3 Smailholm Tower, in Berwickshire, the scene of the Author's infancy, is situated about two miles from Dryburgh Abbey.

4 The two next couplets are not in the MS.

MS.-"While still with mimic hosts of shells,

Again my sport the combat tells

Onward the Scottish Lion bore,

The scatter'd Southron fled before."

And ever, by the winter hearth,
Old tales I heard of woe or mirth,
Of lovers' slights, of ladies' charms,
Of witches' spells, of warriors' arms:
Of patriot battles, won of old

By Wallace wight and Bruce the bold;
Of later fields of feud and fight,

When, pouring from their Highland height,
The Scottish clans, in headlong sway,
Had swept the scarlet ranks away.
While stretch'd at length upon the floor,
Again I fought each combat o'er,
Pebbles and shells, in order laid,
The mimic ranks of war display'd;
And onward still the Scottish Lion bore,
And still the scatter'd Southron fled before."

Still, with vain fondness, could I trace,
Anew, each kind familiar face,
That brighten'd at our evening fire!
From the thatch'd mansion's gray-hair'd Sire,"
Wise without learning, plain and good,
And sprung of Scotland's gentler blood;
Whose eye, in age, quick, clear, and keen,
Show'd what in youth its glance had been;
Whose doom discording neighbors sought,
Content with equity unbought ;

To him the venerable Priest,
Our frequent and familiar guest,
Whose life and manners well could paint
Alike the student and the saint ;
Alas! whose speech too oft I broke
With gambol rude and timeless joke:
For I was wayward, bold, and wild,
A self-will'd imp, a grandame's child;
But half a plague, and half a jest,
Was still endured, beloved, caress'd.

For me, thus nurtured, dost thou ask The classic poet's well-conn'd task? Nay, Erskine, nay-On the wild hill Let the wild heath-bell flourish still; Cherish the tulip, prune the vine, But freely let the woodbine twine, And leave untrimm'd the eglantine: Nay, my friend, nay-Since oft thy praise Hath given fresh vigor to my lays; Since oft thy judgment could refine

• See notes on The Eve of St. John.

7 Robert Scott of Sandyknows, the grandfather of the Poet.

8 Upon revising the Poem, it seems proper to mention that the lines,

"Whose doom discording neighbors sought,
Content with equity unbought:"

have been unconsciously borrowed from a passage in Dryden's beautiful epistle to John Driden of Chesterton.-1808. Note to Second Edit.

MS." The student, gentleman, and saint."

The reverend gentleman alluded to was Mr. John Martin,

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My flatten'd thought, or cumbrous line;
Still kind, as is thy wont, attend,
And in the minstrel spare the friend.
Though wild as cloud, as stream, as gale,
Flow forth, flow unrestrain'd, my Tale!



The Hostel, or Enn.


THE livelong day Lord Marmion rode:
The mountain path the Palmer show'd,
By glen and streamlet winded still,
Where stunted birches hid the rill.
They might not choose the lowland road,'
For the Merse forayers were abroad,
Who, fired with hate and thirst of prey,
Had scarcely fail'd to bar their way.
Oft on the trampling band, from crown
Of some tall cliff, the deer look'd down;
On wing of jet, from his repose

In the deep heath, the black-cock rose;
Sprung from the gorse the timid roe,
Nor waited for the bending bow;
And when the stony path began,
By which the naked peak they wan,
Up flew the snowy ptarmigan.
The noon had long been pass'd before
They gain'd the height of Lammermoor;2
Thence winding down the northern way,
Before them, at the close of day,
Old Gifford's towers and hamlet lay.3


No summons calls them to the tower,
To spend the hospitable hour.

To Scotland's camp the Lord was gone;
His cautious dame, in bower alone,
Dreaded her castle to unclose,
So late, to unknown friends or foes.

On through the hamlet as they paced,
Before a porch, whose front was graced
With bush and flagon trimly placed,
Lord Marmion drew his rein:

The village inn seem'd large, though rude; Its cheerful fire and hearty food

Might well relieve his train.

Down from their seats the horsemen sprung,
With jingling spurs the court-yard rung:
They bind their horses to the stall,
For forage, food, and firing call,
And various clamor fills the hall:
Weighing the labor with the cost,
Toils everywhere the bustling host.


Soon, by the chimney's merry blaze,
Through the rude hostel might you gaze;
Might see, where, in dark nook aloof,
The rafters of the sooty roof

Bore wealth of winter cheer;
Of sea-fowl dried, and solands store,
And gammons of the tusky boar,

And savory haunch of deer.
The chimney arch projected wide;
Above, around it, and beside,

Were tools for housewives' hand;
Nor wanted, in that martial day,
The implements of Scottish fray,

The buckler, lance, and brand.
Beneath its shade, the place of state,
On oaken settle Marmion sate,
And view'd around the blazing hearth.
His followers mix in noisy mirth;
Whom with brown ale, in jolly tide,
From ancient vessels ranged aside,
Full actively their host supplied.


Theirs was the glee of martial breast,
And laughter theirs at little jest;
And oft Lord Marmion deign'd to aid,
And mingle in the mirth they made;
For though, with men of high degree,
The proudest of the proud was he,
Yet, train'd in camps, he knew the art
To win the soldier's hardy heart.
They love a captain to obey,
Boisterous as March, yet fresh as May;
With open hand, and brow as free,
Lover of wine and minstrelsy;
Ever the first to scale a tower,
As venturous in a lady's bower :-
Such buxom chief shall lead his host
From India's fires to Zembla's frost.

minister of Mertoun, in which parish Smailholm Tower is sitnated.

1 MS.-" They might not choose the easier road, For many a forayer was abroad.”

* See Notes to "The Bride of Lammermoor." Novels, vols. xiii, and xiv.


3 The village of Gifford lies about four miles from Haddington close to it is Yester House, the seat of the Marquis of Tweeddale, and a little farther up the stream, which descends from the hills of Lammermoor, are the remains of the old castle of the family.

+ See Appendix, Note 2 N.


Resting upon his pilgrim staff,
Right opposite the Palmer stood;
His thin dark visage seen but half,
Half hidden by his hood.

Still fix'd on Marmion was his look,
Which he, who ill such gaze could brook,
Strove by a frown to quell;

But not for that, though more than once Full met their stern encountering glance,' The Palmer's visage fell.


By fits less frequent from the crowd
Was heard the burst of laughter loud;
For still, as squire and archer stared
On that dark face and matted beard,

Their glee and game declined.
All gazed at length in silence drear,
Unbroke, save when in comrade's ear
Some yeoman, wondering in his fear,

Thus whisper'd forth his mind:-
"Saint Mary! saw'st thou e'er such sight?
How pale his cheek, his eye how bright,
Whene'er the firebrand's fickle light

Glances beneath his cowl!
Full on our Lord he sets his eye;
For his best palfrey, would not I
Endure that sullen scowl."


But Marmion, as to chase the awe

Which thus had quell'd their hearts, who


The ever-varying fire-light show
That figure stern and face of woe,

Now call'd upon a squire:-
"Fitz-Eustace, know'st thou not some lay,
To speed the lingering night away?
We slumber by the fire."-


"So please you," thus the youth rejoin'd,
"Our choicest minstrel's left behind.
Ill may we hope to please your ear,
Accustom'd Constant's strains to hear.
The harp full deftly can he strike,
And wake the lover's lute alike;
To dear Saint Valentine, no thrush
Sings livelier from a spring-tide bush,
No nightingale her love-lorn tune
More sweetly warbles to the moon.
Woe to the cause, whate'er it be,
Detains from us his melody,

Lavish'd on rocks, and billows stern,

Or duller monks of Lindisfarne.

1 MS." Full met their eyes' encountering glance."

Now must I venture, as I may, To sing his favorite roundelay."


A mellow voice Fitz-Eustace had,
The air he chose was wild and sad;
Such have I heard, in Scottish land,
Rise from the busy harvest band,
When falls before the mountaineer,
On Lowland plains, the ripen'd ear.
Now one shrill voice the notes prolong,
Now a wild chorus swells the song:
Oft have I listen'd, and stood still,
As it came soften'd up the hill,
And deem'd it the lament of men
Who languish'd for their native glen;
And thought how sad would be such sound
On Susquehanna's swampy ground,
Kentucky's wood-encumber'd brake,
Or wild Ontario's boundless lake,
Where heart-sick exiles, in the strain,
Recall'd fair Scotland's hills again!

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