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Yet was his helmet hacked and hewed,
His axe and his dagger with blood imbrued,But it was not English gore.
He lighted at the Chapellage,
"Come thou hither, my little foot-page; Come hither to my knee;
Thou art young, and tender of age,
I think thou art true to me.
Come, tell me all that thou hast seen,
Since I from Smaylho'me tower have been,
"My lady, each night, sought the lonely light, That burns on the wild Watch fold;
For, from height to height, the beacons bright Of the English foemen told.
"The bittern clamoured from the moss,
"I watched her steps, and silent came
No watchman stood by the dreary flame;
"The second night I kept her in sight, Till to the fire she came,
And, by Mary's might! an armèd Knight
"And many a word that warlike lord Did speak to my lady there;
But the rain fell fast, and loud blew the blast, And I heard not what they were.
The third night there the sky was fair,
"And I heard her name the midnight hour, And name this holy eve;
And say, 'Come this night to thy lady's bower: Ask no bold Baron's leave.
"He lifts his spear with the bold Buccleuch; His lady is all alone;
The door she'll undo to her knight so true,
"I cannot come; I must not come;
On the eve of St. John I must wander alone:
"Now, out on thee, faint-hearted knight!
"And I'll chain the blood-hound, and the warder
And rushes shall be strewed on the stair;
"Though the blood-hound be mute, and the rush
And the warder his bugle should not blow,
Yet there sleepeth a priest in the chamber to the east,
"O fear not the priest, who sleepeth to the east!
"He turned him around, and grimly he frowned;
'He who says the mass-rite for the soul of that knight,
"At the lone midnight hour, when bad spirits have
In thy chamber will I be.'
With that he was gone, and my lady left alone,
Then changed, I trow, was that bold Baron's brow,
"Now, tell me the mien of the knight thou hast seen,
"His arms shone full bright, in the beacon's red light; His plume it was scarlet and blue;
On his shield was a hound, in a silver leash bound,
And his crest was a branch of the yew."
k The black rood of Melrose was a crucifix of black marble, and cf superior sanctity.
I Dryburgh Abbey is beautifully situated on the banks of the Tweed. After its dissolution, it became the property of the Halliburtons of Newmains, and is now the seat of the right honourable the earl of Buchan. It belonged to the order of Premonstratenses.
"Thou liest, thou liest, thou little foot-page,
For that knight is cold, and low laid in the mould,
"Yet hear but my word, my noble lord!
And that lady bright, she called the knight,
The bold Baron's brow then changed, I trow,
"The grave is deep and dark-and the corpse is stiff
So I may not trust thy tale.
"Where fair Tweed flows round holy Melrose,
Full three nights ago, by some secret foe,
"The varying light deceived thy sight,
For Sir Richard of Coldinghame!"
He passed the court-gate, and he oped the tower grate,
To the bartizan-seat, where, with maids that on her
He found his lady fair.
That lady sat in mournful mood;
Over Tweed's fair flood, and Mertoun's wood,
"Now hail, now hail, thou lady bright!"
What news, what news, from Ancram fight?
The Ancram Moor is red with gore,
And Buccleuch has charged us, evermore
The lady blushed red, but nothing she said;
Then she stepped down the stair to her chamber fair,
m Eildon is a high hill, terminating in three conical summits, immediately above the town of Melrose, where are the admired ruins of a magnificent monastery. Eildon-tree is said to be the spot where Thomas the Rhymer uttered his prophecies.
In sleep the lady mourned, and the Baron tossed and turned,
And oft to himself he said
"The worms around him creep, and his bloody grave
It cannot give up the dead!"
It was near the ringing of matin-bell,
When a heavy sleep on that Baron fell,
The lady looked through the chamber fair,
And she was aware of a knight stood there-
"Alas! away, away!" she cried,
"By Eildon-tree, for long nights three,
The mass and the death-prayer are said for me,
"By the Baron's brand, near Tweed's fair strand,
Most foully slain I fell;
And my restless sprite on the beacon's height
For a space is doomed to dwell.
"At our trysting-place, for a certain space
I must wander to and fro;
But I had not had power to come to thy bower,
Love mastered fear-her brow she crossed;
66 How, Richard, hast thou sped?
And art thou saved, or art thou lost ?"
"Who spilleth life, shall forfeit life,
That lawless love is guilt above,
This awful sign receive."
He laid his left palm on an oaken beam;
The lady shrunk, and fainting sunk,
For it scorched like a fiery brand.
The sable score, of fingers four,
There is a Nun" in Dryburgh bower,
That Nun, who ne'er beholds the day,
THE RIGHT HONOURABLE LADY ANNE HAMILTON.
THE ruins of Cadyow, or Cadzow Castle, the ancient baronial residence of the family of Hamilton, are situated upon the precipitous banks of the river Evan, about two miles above its junction with the Clyde. The situation of the ruins, embosomed in wood, darkened by ivy and creeping shrubs, and overhanging the brawling torrent, is romantic in the highest degree. In the immediate vicinity of Cadyow is a grove of immense oaks, the remains of the Caledonian Forest, which anciently extended through the south of Scotland, from the Eastern to the Atlantic Ocean. Some of
n The circumstance of the nun, "who never saw the day," is not entirely imaginary. About fifty years ago, an unfortunate female wanderer took up her residence in a dark vault, among the ruins of Dryburgh Abbey, which, during the day, she never quitted. When night fell, she issued from this miserable habitation, and went to the house of Mr. Halliburton of Newmains, Sir Walter Scott's greatgrandfather, or to that of Mr. Erskine of Sheilfield, two gentlemen of the neighbourhood. From their charity she obtained such necessaries as she could be prevailed upon to accept. At twelve, each night, she lighted her candle and returned to her vault, assuring her friendly neighbours that, during her absence, her habitation was arranged by a spirit, to whom she gave the uncouth name of Fatlips; describing him as a little man, wearing heavy iron shoes, with which he trampled the clay floor of the vault, to dispel the damps. This circumstance caused her to be regarded, by the well-informed, with compassion, as deranged in her understanding; and by the vulgar, with some degree of terror. The cause of her adopting this extraordinary mode of life she would never explain. It was, however, believed to have been occasioned by a vow that, during the absence of a man to whom she was attached, she would never look upon the sun. Her lover never returned. He fell during the civil war of 1745-6, and she never more would behold the light of day. The vault, or rather dungeon, in which this unfortunate woman lived and died, passes still by the name of the supernatural being with which its gloom was tenanted by her disturbed imagination, and few of the neighbouring peasants dare enter it by night.