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'Twixt cloud and ocean hung, Glanced with a thousand lights of glee, And landward far, and far to sea,
Her festal radiance flung.'
Whose lustre mingled well
Above the eastern fell.
To light the upward way.
And, vex'd at thy delay,
Had driven thy bark astray.”—
Or like the battle-shout
Madden the fight and route.
And deepen'd' shadow inade,
A hundred torches play'd, Spangling the wave with lights as vain As pleasures in this vale of pain,
That dazzle as they fade.*
Until the break of day;
That's breath'd upon by May.
Again to bear away."-
Whence come, or whither bound ?
Or Scotland's mountain ground ?”
So straight, so high, so steep,
And plunged them in the deep.5
From turret, rock, and bay,
Bound by a vow-warriors are we;
We have been known to fame;
That gives us rightful claim.
Fair of your courtesy ;
And wanderer on the lea!”—
1 " The description of the vessel's approach to the Castle 2 MS. -"The wind, the wave, the sea-birds' cry, through the tempestuous and sparkling waters, and the con
In melancholy concert vie." trast of the gloomy aspect of the billows with the glittering
3 MS._" Darksome." splendour of Artornish,
4 "Mr. Scott, we observed in the newspapers, was engaged
during last summer in a maritime expedition; and, accord""Twixt cloud and ocean hung,'
ingly, the most striking novelty in the present poem is the ex
tent and variety of the sea pieces with which it abounds. One sending her radiance abroad through the terrors of the night of the first we meet with is the picture of the distresses of the and mingling at intervals the shouts of her revelry with the King's little bark, and her darkling run to the shelter of Ar wilder cadence of the blast, is one of the happiest instances of tornish Castle."-- Edinburgh Review, 1815: Mr. Scott's felicity in awful and magnificent scenery."—Criti. 6 See Appendix, Note K. cal Review.
6 ms.-" That younger leader."
But every jealous post of ward
And all the passage free
XXVII. “ Bold stranger, no-'gainst claim like thine, No bolt revolves by hand of mine,' Though urged in tone that more express’d A monarch than a suppliant guest. Be what ye will, Artornish Hall On this glad eve is free to alı. Though ye had drawn a hostile sword 'Gainst our ally, great England's Lord, Or mail upon your shoulders borne, To battle with the Lord of Lorn, Or, outlaw'd, dwelt by greenwood tree With the fierce Knight of Ellerslie, Or aided even the murderous strife, When Comyn fell beneath the knife Of that fell homicide The Bruce, This night had been a term of truce.Ho, vassals ! give these guests your care, And show the narrow postern stair.”
As if ye ne'er had seen
And bearing martial mien."
But crowded on to stare,
From one the foremost there,7
Involved his sister fair.
Made brief and stern excusa;“ Vassal, were thine the cloak of pall That decks thy Lord in bridal hall,
"Twere honour'd by her use."
Half lifeless up the rock;
Droops from the mountain oak. Him follow'd close that elder Lord, And in his hand a sheathed sword,
Such as few arms could wield; But when he bound him to such task, Well could it cleave the strongest casque,
And rend the surest shield."
XXIX. 'The raised portcullis’ arch they pass, The wicket with its bars of brass,
The entrance long and low,5 Flank'd at each turn by loop-holes strait, Where bowmen might in ambush wait, (If force or fraud should burst the gate,)
To gall an entering foe.
XXXI. Proud was his tone, but calm; his eye Had that compelling dignity, His mien that bearing haught and high,
Which common spirits fear! 8 Needed nor word nor signal more, Nod, wink, and laughter, all were o'er; Upon each other back they bore,
And gazed like startled deer. But now appear'd the Seneschal, Commission’d by his lord to call The strangers to the Baron's hall,
Where feasted fair and free
8“ Still sways their souls with that commanding art
That dazzles, Icads, yet chills the vulgar heart.
* MS.-" The entrance vaulted low." O MS.—" Or warlike men of moulding stark." : MS." Till that hot Edward fiercely caught
From cne, the boldest there."
That Island Prince in nuptial tide,
Of Western land and sea.'
Here pause we, gentles, for a space;
The vacant brow, the unlistening eas,
The Lord of the Isles.
Fill the bright goblet, spread the festive board !
Lift not the festal mask !-enough to know,
IV. She watch’d-yet fear'd to meet his glance, And he shunn'd hers;-till when by chance They met, the point of foeman's lance
Had given a milder pang! Beneath the intolerable smart He writhed-then sternly mann'd his heart To play his hard but destined part,
And from the table sprang. “ Fill me the mig!
cup!” he said,
Of Lorn, this pledge I drink-
By this fair bridal-link!”–
And call for pledge and lay,
Seem gayest of the gay.5
V. “ Let it pass round!” quoth He of Loru, “ And in good time—that winded hort
Must of the Abbot tell;
The untasted goblet fell.
Returns like sun of May,
As glad of brief delay,
III. Yet nought amiss the bridal throng Mark'd in brief mirth, or musing long;
MS.—“Of mountain chivalry." 9 “ The first Canto is full of business and description, and the scenes are such as Mr. Scott's muse generally excels in. The scene between Edith and her nurse is spirited, and contains many very pleasing lines. The description of Lord Ronald's fleet, and of the bark endeavouring to make her way against the wind, more particularly of the last, is executed with extraordinary beauty and fidelity."- Quarterly Review. 8“Even in langhter the heart is sorrowful; and the end that mirth is heaviness."- Proverbs, xiv. 13.
"and give birth To jest, to wassail, and to mirth." 5 MS.--" Would seem the loudest of the loud.
And gayest of the gay." 6 MS.—" Since Lorn, the proudest of the prou:). 7 MS.--" And since the keen De Argentine." 8 See Appendix, Note L. 9 See Appendix, Note M.
As some poor criminal might feel,
Mark'd ye the younger stranger's eye,
My mates, how quick, how keen, how ligh,
How fierce its flashes fell,
Glancing among the noble rout 8
As if to seek the noblest out, “ Brother of Lorn," with hurried voice
Because the owner might not brook
On any save his peers to look?
And yet it moves me more,
That steady, calm, majestic brow,
With which the elder chief even now
Scann'd the gay presence o'er,
Like being of superior kind,
In whose high-toned impartial mind
Degrees of mortal rank and state
Seem objects of indifferent weight. The Seneschal the presence scann'd
The lady too-though closely tied Of these strange guests ;9 and well he
The mantle veil both face and eye, knew
Her motions' grace it could not hide,
Nor could her form's fair symmetry.”
Suspicious doubt and lordly scorn
Lourd on the haughty front of Lorn.
From underneath his brows of pride, Was in their mien and in their face,
The stranger guests he sternly eyed,
And whisper'd closely what the ear
Of Argentine alone might hear;
Then question’d, high and brief,
If, in their voyage, aught they knew
Of the rebellious Scottish crew,
Who to Rath-Erin's shelter drew,
With Carrick's outlaw'd Chief ? 10 And angry looks the error chide, 5
And if, their winter's exile o'er, That gave to guests unnamed, unknown,
They harbour'd still by Ulster's shore,
Or launch'd their galleys on the main,
To vex their native land again ?
That younger stranger, fierce and high,
At once confronts the Chieftain's By look, by bearing, and by tone,
With look of equal scornNot by furr'd robe or broider'd zone;
“ Of rebels have we nought to show; And 'gainst an oaken bough
But if of Royal Bruce thou’dst know, I'll gage my silver wand of state,
I warn thee he has sworn,12
Ere thrice three days shall come and gu,
His banner Scottish winds shall blow,
Despite each mean or mighty foe,
From England's every bill and bow, “ I, too,” the aged Ferrand said,
To Allaster of Lorn." “ Am qualified by minstrel trade 7
Kindled the mountain Chieftain's ire, Of rank and place to tell ;
But Ronald quench'd the rising fire;
I MS.-“ As may their presence fittest grace." 9 MS.--"With solemn pace, and silver rod,
The Seneschal the entrance show'd
To these strange guests." • See Appendix, Note N.
4 Dais-the great hall-table-elevated a step or two above the rest of the room. 5 MS." Aside then lords and ladies spake,
And ushers censured the mistake." “The first entry of the illustrious strangers into the castle
of the Celtic chief, is in the accustomed and peculiar style of
Am qualified by minstrel craft."
" the festal rout." 9 MS.-“ Nor hide," &c. 10 See Appendix, Note 0. 11 MS.-" That younger stranger, nought out-dared,
Was prompt the haughty Chief to beard.” 12 MS.-" Men say that he has sworu."
“Gem! ne'er wrought on Highland mountain,
When the gem was won and lost,
1 " The description of the bridal feast, in the second Canto, tions. In the struggle, however, the brooch which fastoned has several animated lines; but the real power and poetry of his royal mantle had been torn off by the assailants; and it the author do not appear to us to be called out until the occa- is on the subject of this trophy that the Celtic poet pour sion of the Highland quarrel which follows the feast."- forth this wild, rapid, and spirited strain."-JEFFREY. Monthly Review, March, 1815.
4 Ibid, Note Q. 9 “In a very different style of excellence (from that of the 8 See Appendix, Note R.
8 See Appendix, Note P.
8 Ibid, Note S. first three stanzas) is the triumphant and insulting song of the 7 See Appendix, Note T. bard of Lorn, commemorating the pretended victory of his 8 MS.-“ Left his followers to the sword.” chief over Robert Bruce, in one of their rencontres. Bruce, 9 See Appendix, Note U. to truth, had been set on by some of that clan, and had extri- 10 The MS. has not this couplet. Culed himself from a fearful overmatch by stupendous exer- 11 MS.-“When breathless Lorn had left the strija."