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The Eve of St. John.
SMAYLHO'ME, or Smallholm Tower, the scene of He went not with the bold Buccleuchi, the following ballad, is situated on the northern boun- His banner broad to rear; dary of Roxburghshire, among a cluster of wild rocks, IIe went not 'gainst the English yew, called Sandiknowl-Crags, the property of Hugh Scott,
To lift the Scottish spear. Esq. of IIarden, [now Lord Polwarth.] The tower is a high square building, surrounded by an outer wall, Yet his plate-jack 4 was braced, and his helmet was now ruinous. The circuit of the outer court, being de- laced, fended on three sides, by a precipice and morass, is ac- And his vaunt-brace of proof he wore; cessible only from the west, by a steep and rocky path. At his saddle-gerthe was a good steel sperthe, The apartments, as is usual in a Border keep, or fortress, Full ten pound weight and more. are placed one above another, and communicate by a narrow stair ; on the roof are two bartizans, or plat- The Baron return'd in three days space, forms, for defence or pleasure. The inner door of the And his looks were sad and sour; tower is wood, the outer an iron gate; the distance And weary was his courser's pace, between them being nine feet, the thickness, namely, As he reach'd his rocky tower. of the wall. From the elevated situation of Smaylhoʻme Tower, it is seen many miles in every direction. He came not from where Ancram Moors Among the crags by which it is surrounded, one, Ran red with English blood; more eminent, is called the Watchfold, and is said to Where the Douglas true, and the bold Buchave been the station of a beacon, in the times of cleuch, war with England. Without the tower-court is a 'Gainst keen Lord Evers stood. ruined chapel. Brotherstone is a heath, in the neighLourhood of Smaylho'me Tower.
Yet was his helmet hack'd and hew'd, This ballad was first printed in Mr. Lewis's Tales His acton pierced and tore, of Wonder. It is here published, with some additional His axe and his dagger with blood imbrued,illustrations, particularly an account of the battle of But it was not English gore. Ancram Moor; which seemed proper in a work upon Border antiquities. The catastrophe of the tale is He lighted at the Chapellage, founded upon a well-known Irish tradition. This He held him close and still; ancient fortress and its vicinity formed the scene of And he whistled thrice for his little foot-page, the Editor's infancy, and seemed to claim from him His name was English Will. this attempt to celebrate them in a Border tale.3
“ Come thou hither, my little foot-page,
Come hither to my knee;
I think thou art true to me.
Tue Baron of Smaylho'me rose with day,
He spurr’d his courser on,
That leads to Brotherstone.
“ Come, tell me all that thou hast seen,
And look thou tell me true!
What did thy lady do?"
1 “ This place l is rendered interesting to poetical readers, that she bare the mark of it to her dying day. But the by its having been the residence, in early life, of Mr. Walter examples of cold are more frequent; as in that famous story Scott, who has celebrated it in his • Eve of St. John.' To it of Cuntius, when he touched the arm of a certain woman of he probably alludes in the introduction to the third canto of Pentoch, as she lay in her bed, he felt as cold as ice; and so Marmion.
did the spirit's claw to Anne Styles."— Ed. 1662, p. 135.
"Then rise those crags, that mountain tower,
Scots Mag. March, 1809. 9 The following passage, in Dr. HENRY MORE's Appendix to the Antidote against Alheism, relates to a similar phenomeDon :-“I confess, that the bodies of devils may not be only warm, but sindgingly hot, as it was in him that took one of Melancthon's relations by the hand, and so scorched her,
3 Sce the Introduction to the third canto of Marmiɔn.
“ It was a barren scene, and wild,
Where naked cliffs were rudely piled;
Recesses where the wallflower grew," &c.—ED.
6 See Appendix, Note A.
1 The farm house in the immediate vicinity of Smailholm.