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ile, skill'd in every sirvan guile,
'Twas then-like tiger elose beseta knows not, nor tries, such various wile,
At every pass with toil and net, As Risingham, when on the wind
'Counter'd, where'er he turns his glare, Arose the loud pursuit behind.
By clashing arms and torches' Hare, In Redesdale his youth had heard
Who meditates, with furious bound, Each art her wily dalesmen dared,
To burst on hunter, horse, and hound,When Rooken-edge, and Redswair high,
”Twas then that Bertram's soul arose, To bugle rung and blood-hound's cry,
Prompting to rush upon his foes: Announcing Jedwood-axe and spear,
But as that crouching tiger, cow'd And Lid’sdale riders in the rear;
By brandish'd steel and shouting crowd, And well his venturous life had proved
Retreats beneath the jungle's shroud, The lessons that his childhood loved.
Bertrain suspends his purpose stern,
And couches in the brake and fern,
Hiding his face, lest foemen spy
The sparkle of his swarthy eye.5
Then Bertram might the bearing trace The speed, that in the flight or chase,
Of the bold youth who led the chase ; Outstripp'd the Charib's rapid race;
Who paused to list for every sound, The steady brain, the sinewy limb,
Climb every height to look around, To leap, to climb, to dive, to swim;
Then rushing on with naked sword, The iron frame, inured to bear
Each dingle's bosky depths explored. Each dire inclemency of air.
"Twas Redmond-by the azure eye; Nor less confirm'd to undergo
"Twas Redmond-by the locks that fly Fatigue's faint chill, and famine's throe.
Disorder'd from his glowing cheek; These arts he proved, his life to save,
Mien, face, and form, young Redmond speal. In peril oft by land and wave,
A form inore active, light, and strong, On Arawaca's desert shore,
Ne'er shot the ranks of war along; Or where La Plata's billows roar.
The modest, yet the manly mien, When oft the sons of vengeful Spain
Might grace the court of maiden queen; Track'd the marauder's steps in vain.
A face more fair you well might find, These arts, in Indian warfare tried,
For Redmond's knew the sun and wind, Must save him now by Greta's side.
Nor boasted, from their tinge when free,
The charm of regularity;
But every feature had the power 'Twas then, in hour of utmost need,
To aid the expression of the hour: He proved his courage, art, and speed.
Whether gay wit, and humour sly, Now slow he stalk'd with stealthy pace,
Danced laughing in his light-blue eye; Now started forth in rapid race,
Or bended brow, and glance of fire, Oft doubling back in mazy train,
And kindling cheek, spoke Erin’s ire; To blind the trace the dews retain ;'
Or soft and sadden'd glances show Now clombe the rocks projecting high,
Her ready sympathy with woe; To baffle the pursuer's eye;
Or in that wayward mood of mind, Now sought the stream, whose brawling sound When various feelings are combined, The echo of his footsteps drown'd.
When joy and sorrow mingle near, But if the forest verge he nears,
And hope's bright wings are check'd by There trample steeds, and glimmer spears;
fear, If deeper down the copse he drew,
And rising doubts keep transport down, He heard the rangers' loud halloo,
And anger lends a short-lived frown; Beating each cover while they came,
In that strange mood which maids approve As if to start the silvan game.
Even when they dare not call it love;
1 See Appendix, Note 2 A.
Prompting to rush upon bis foes,
" Suspending ret his purpose stern,
The sparkle of his swarthy eye.”
6 These six couplets were often quoted by the late Lord Kinnedder as giving, in his opinion, an excellent portrait of the author himself.--ED.
4 In the MS. the stanza cosciudes thus :
With every change his features play id,
le stands in Scargill wood alone, As aspens show the light and shade.'
Nor hears he now a harsher tono
Than the hoarse cushat's plaintive cry,
Or Greta's sound that murmurs by;
And on the dale, so lone and wild,
The summer sun in quiet smiled.
lle listen'd long with anxious heart, That wails a generous foeman low,
Ear bent to hear, and foot to start, Far less that sense of justice strong,
And, while his stretch'd attention glows, That wreaks a generous foeman's wrong.
Refused his weary frame repose. But small his leisure now to pause;
'Twas silence all-he laid him down, Redmond is first, whate'er the cause : 2
Where purple heath profusely strown, And twice that Redmond came so near
And throatwort, with its azure bell, Where Bertram couch'd like hunted deer,
And moss and thyme his cushion swell. The very boughs his steps displace,
There, spent with toil, he listless eyed Rustled against the ruffian's face,
The course of Greta's playful tide; Who, desperate, twice prepared to start,
Beneath, her banks now eddying dun, And plunge his dagger in his heart !
Now brightly gleaming to the sun, But Redmond turn'd a different way,
As, dancing over rock and stone, And the bent boughs resumed their sway,
In yellow light her currents shone, And Bertram held it wise, unseen,
Matching in hue the favourite gem Deeper to plunge in coppice green.
Of Albin's mountain-diadem. Thus, circled in his coil, the snake,
Then, tired to watch the current's play, When roving hunters beat the brake,
He turn'd his weary eyes away, Watches with red and glistening eye,
To where the bank opposing show'd Prepared, if heedless step draw nigh,
Its huge, square cliffs througli shaggy wood." With forked tongue and venom'd fang
One, prominent above the rest, Instant to dart the deadly pang;
Rear'd to the sun its pale grey breast; But if the intruders turn aside,
Around its broken summit grew Away his coils unfolded glide,
The hazel rude, and sable yew; And through the deep savannah wind,
A thousand varied lichens dyed Some undisturb'd retreat to find.
Its waste and weather-beaten side,
And round its rugged basis lay,
By time or thunder rent away,
Fragments, that, from its frontlet torn, And heard the loud pursuit renew,
Were mantled now by verdant thorn. And Redmond's hollo on the wind,
Such was the scene's wild majesty,
That fill'd stern Bertram's gazing eye.
In sullen mood he lay reclined,
Revolving, in his stormy mind, That voice of thine, that shouts so loud,
The felon deed, the fruitless guilt, Should ne'er repeat its summons proudl!
His patron's blood by treason spilt ; No! nor e'er try its melting power
A crime, it seem'd, so dire and dread, Again in maiden's summer bower."
That it had power to wake the dead. Eluded, now behind him die,
Then, pondering on his life betray'd ? Faint and more faint, each hostile cry;
By Oswald's art to Redmond's blade,
I In the MS. this image comes after the line " to nid the bury bells, grows in profusion upon the beautiful banks of the expression of the hour," and the couplet stands :
river Greta, where it divides the manors of Brignall and Scar “And like a flexile aspen play'a
gill, about three miles above Greta Bridge.
* show'd, Alternately in light and shade." 9 MS.-" The chase he heads, whate'er the cause."
With many a rocky fragment rude,
Its old grey cliffs and shaggy wood." 3 MS. -"and limbs to start,
6 The MS. adds: And, while his stretch'd attention glows,
" Yet as he gazed, he fail'd to find Scarce felt his weary frame repose."
According image touch his mind." • The Campanula Latifolia, grand throatwort, or Canter- 7 MS.-“ Then thought he on his life betray'a."
In treacherous purpose to withhold,
Yet, dubious still, opposed he stood So seem'd it, Mortham's promised gold,
To him that issued from the wood: A deep and full revenge he vow'd
“ Guy Denzil!-is it thou ?” he said; On Redmond, forward, fierce, and proud;
“ Do we two meet in Scargill shade! Revenge on Wilfrid on his sire
Stand back a space!—thy purpose show, Redoubled vengeance, swift and dire !
Whether thou comest as friend or foe. If, in such mood, (as legends say,
Report hath said, that Denzil's name And well believed that simple day,)
From Rokeby's band was razed with shame.”The Enemy of Man has power
“ A shame I owe that hot O'Neale, To profit by the evil hour,
Who told his knight, in peevish zeal, Here stood a wretch, prepared to change
Of my marauding on the clowns His soul's redemption for revenge !!
Of Calverley and Bradford downs.5 But though his vows, with such a fire
I reck not. In a war to strive, Of earnest and intense desire
Where, save the leaders, none can thrive, For vengeance dark and fell, were made,?
Suits ill my mood; and better game As well might reach hell's lowest shade,
Awaits us both, if thou’rt the same No deeper clouds the grove embrown'd,
Unscrupulous, bold Risingham, No nether thunders shook the ground;
Who watched with me in midnight dark, The demon knew his vassal's heart,
To snatch a deer from Rokeby-park. And spared temptation’s needless art.3
How think’st thou !”—“ Speak thy purpose
I love not mystery or doubt."-
“ Then, list.-Not far there lurk a crew That very Mortham whom he slew?
Of trusty comrades, stanch and true, Or had in living flesh appear'd
Glean’d from both factions—Roundheads, freed The only man on earth he fear'd?
From cant of sermon and of creed; To try the mystic cause intent,
And Cavaliers, whose souls, like mine, His eyes, that on the cliff were bent,
Spurn at the bonds of discipline. 'Counter'd at once a dazzling glance,
Wiser, we judge, by dale and wold, Like sunbeam flash'd from sword or lance.
A warfare of our own to hold, At once he started as for fight,
Than breathe our last on battle-down, But not a foeman was in sight;*
For cloak or surplice, mace or crown. He heard the cushat's murmur hoarse,
Our schemes are laid, our purpose set, He heard the river's sounding course;
A chief and leader lack we yet.--The solitary woodlands lay,
Thou art a wanderer, it is said ; As slumbering in the summer ray.
For Mortham’s death, thy steps way-laid, He gazed, like lion roused, around,
Thy head at price—so say our spies, Then sunk again upon the ground.
Who range the valley in disguise. 'Twas but, he thought, some fitful beam,
Join then with us :—though wild debate Glanced sudden from the sparkling stream; And wrangling rend our infant state, Then plunged him from his gloomy train
Each to an equal loth to bow, Of ill-connected thoughts again,
Will yield to chief renown'd as thou.”— Until a voice behind him cried, « Bertram! well met on Greta side.”
“Even now,” thought Bertram, passion-stirr'd, XI.
“ I call'd on hell, and hell has heard !8 Instant his sword was in his hand,
What lack I, vengeance to command, As instant sunk the ready brand;
But of stanch comrades such a band ?9
| See Appendix, Note 2 C.
As well might wake hell's lowest shade."
« The fiend Saw undelighted all delight."-ED. 4 MS.—“ Look'd round-no foeman was in sight." 8 See Appendix, Note 2 D. 6 MS.—“ Unscrupulous, gallant Risingham." 7 MS.-" Thy head at price, thy steps way-laid." 8,...." I but half wish'd
To see the devil, and he's here already."-OTWAY 9 MS.--" What lack I, my revenge to quench,
But such a band of comrades stanch ?"
This Denzil, vow'd to every evil,
And Blasphemy, to frenzy driven, Might read a lesson to the devil.
With his own crimes reproaching heaven; Well, be it so ! each knave and fool
While Bertram show'd, amid the crew,
The Master-Fiend that Milton drew.
XV. “ Not far from hence,” Guy Denzil said;
Hark! the loud revel wakes again, “ Descend, and cross the river's bed,
To greet the leader of the train. Where rises yonder cliff so grey.”—
Behold the group by the pale lamp, “ Do thou,” said Bertram,“ lead the way.”
That struggles with the earthy damp. Then mutter'd," It is best make sure;
By what strange features Vice hath known, Guy Denzil's faith was never pure."
To single out and mark her own! He follow'd down the steep descent,
Yet some there are, whose brows retain Then through the Greta's streams they went; Less deeply stamp'd her brand and stain. And, when they reach'd the farther shore,
See yon pale stripling !3 when a boy, They stood the lonely cliff before.
A mother's pride, a father's joy!
Now, 'gainst the vault's rude walls reclined,
An early image fills his mind:
The cottage, once his sire's, he sees, The flinty rock a murmur'd din;
Embower'd upon the banks of Tees; But when Guy pull’d the wilding spray,
He views sweet Winston's woodland scene, And brambles, from its base away,'
And shares the dance on Gainford-green. He saw, appearing to the air,
A tear is springing-but the zest A little entrance, low and square,
Of some wild tale, or brutal jest, Like opening cell of hermit lone,
Hath to loud laughter stirr'd the rest. Dark, winding through the living stone.
On him they call, the aptest mate Here enter'd Denzil, Bertram here;
For jovial song and merry feat: And loud and louder on their ear,
Fast flies his dream—with dauntless air, As from the bowels of the earth,
As one victorious o'er Despair, Resounded shouts of boisterous mirth.
He bids the ruddy cup go round, Of old, the cavern strait and rude,
Till sense and sorrow both are drown'd; In slaty rock the peasant hew'd;
And soon, in merry wassail, he,* And Brignall's woods, and Scargill's, wave,
The life of all their revelry, E'en now, o'er many a sister cave,
Peals his loud song !—The muse has found Where, far within the darksome rift,
Her blossoms on the wildest ground, The wedge and lever ply their thrift.
'Mid noxious weeds at random strew'd, But war had silenced rural trade,
Themselves all profitless and rude. And the deserted mine was made
With desperate merriment he sung, The banquet-hall and fortress too,
The cavern to the chorus rung; Of Denzil and his desperate crew.
Yet mingled with his reckless glee
Remorse's bitter agony.
Song.5 Regret was there, his eye still cast
0, Brignall banks are wild and fair, With vain repining on the past;
And Greta woods are green, Among the feasters waited near
And you may gather garlands there, Sorrow, and unrepentant Fear,
Would grace a summer queen.
I MS.--" But when Guy Denzil pull'd the spray,
group, is distinguished the exquisitely natural and inte. And brambles, from its roots away,
resting portrait which follows: Ho saw, forth issuing to the air."
"See yon pale stripling!' &c."
Critical Review. ? See Appendix, Note 2 E.
* MS.-"And soon the loudest wassailer he, 3 “ We should here have concluded our remarks on the
And life of all their revelry." characters of the drama, had not one of its subordinate per- 6 Scott revisited Rokeby in 1812, for the purpose of resonages been touched with a force of imagination, which freshing his memory; and Mr. Morritt says,—" I had, of renders it worthy even of prominent regard and attention course, had many previous opportunities of testing the almost The poet has just presented us with the picture of a gang of conscientious fidelity of his local descriptions ; but I could not banditti, on which he has bestowed some of the most gloomy help being singularly struck with the lights which this visit colouring of his powerful pencil. In the midst of this horri- threw on that characteristic of his compositions. The morn
And as I rode by Dalton-hall,
“ And, O! though Brignall banks be fair, A Maiden on the castle wall
And Greta woods be gay, Was singing merrily,
Yet mickle must the maiden dare,
Would reign my Queen of May! “O, Brignall banks are fresh and fair, And Greta woods are green;
XVIII. I'd rather rove with Edmund there,
“ Maiden! a nameless life I lead, Than reign our English queen.”
A nameless death I'll die!
The fiend, whose lantern lights the mead, “ Tf, Maiden, thou wouldst wend with me,
Were better mate than I! To leave both tower and town,
And when I'm with my comrades met, Thou first must guess what life lead wc,
Beneath the greenwood bough, That dwell by dale and down?
What once we were we all forget,
Nor think what we are now.
“ Yet Brignall banks are fresh and fair, As blithe as Queen of May.”
And Greta woods are green,
And you may gather garlands there
Would grace a summer queen."
When Edmund ceased his simple song, 'Than reign our English queen.
Was silence on the sullen throng,
Till waked some ruder mate their glee
With note of coarser minstrelsy. “ I read you, by your bugle-horn,
But, far apart, in dark divan, And by your pa!frey good,
Denzil and Bertram many a plan, I read you for a ranger sworn,
Of import foul and fierce, design'd, To keep the king's greenwood.”—
While still on Bertram's grasping mind “ A Ranger, lady, winds his horn,
The wealth of murder'd Mortbam hung; And 'tis at peep of light;
Though half he fear'd his daring tongue, His blast is heard at merry morn,
When it should give his wishes birth, 3
Might raise a spectre from the earth!
At length his wondrous tale he told: I would I were with Edmund there,
When, scornful, smiled his comrade bold; To reign his Queen of May!
For, train'd in license of a court,
Religion's self was Denzil's sport; “ With burnish'd brand and musketoon,
Then judge in what contempt he held So gallantly you come,
The visionary tales of eld' I read you for a bold Dragoon,
His awe for Bertram scarce repressid That lists the tuck of drum.”
The unbeliever's sneering jest. “ I list no more the tuck of drum,
“ 'Twere hard,” he said, “ for sage or seer, No more the trumpet hear;
To spell the subject of your fear; But when the beetle sounds his hum,
Nor do I boast the art renown'd, My comrades take the spear.
Vision and omen to expound.
ing after he arrived he said, 'You hare often giren me mate as boundless as the range of nature in the scenes he recorded; rials for romance-now I want a good robber's cave and an whereas, whoever trusted to imagination, would soon find his old church of the right sort. We rode out, and he found own min circumscribed, and contracted to a vourite what he wanted in the ancient slate quarries of Brignall and images.'"- Life of Scott, vol. iv. p. 19. the ruined Abbey of Egliston. I observed him noting down | MS.—“The goblin-light on fen or mead." even the peculiar little wild flowers and herbs that nccident- 2 MS—“And were I with my true love set ally grew round and on the side of a bold crag near his in
Under the green wood bough, tended care of Guy Denzil; and could not help saying, that
What once I was she must forget, as he was not to be upon oath in his work, daisies, violets, and
Nor think what Iam now." primroses would be as poetical as any of the humble plants he
-" give the project birth." was examining. I laughed, in short, at his scrupulousness; 4 MS._"• 'Twere hard, my friend,' he said, 'to spell but I understood him when he replied, 'that in nature herself
The morning vision that you tell; no two scenes were exactly alike, and that whoever copied
Nor am I scer, for art renown'd, truly what was before his eyes, would possess the same rari
Dark dreams and onens to expound. ety in his descriptions, and exhibit apparently an imagination
Yet, if my faith I must afford,'" c.