Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB
[blocks in formation]

(9.)-CHAP. XXX.

(5.)-CHAP. XXIII. Our counsels waver like the unsteady bark, Oh! you would be a vestal maid, I warrant, That reels amid the strife of meeting currents. The bride of Heaven-Come—we may shake you

Old Play

purpose:

For here I bring in hand a jolly suitor (10.)-CHAP, XXXI.

| Hath ta'en degrees in the seven sciences Hold fast thy truth, young soldier. Gentle That ladies love best—He is young and noble, maiden,

Handsome and valiant, gay and rich, and liberal Keep you your promise plight-leave age its sub

The Nur tleties, And gray-hair'd policy its maze of falsehood;

(6.)-CHAP. XXXII. But be you candid as the morning sky,

| It comes-it wrings me in my parting hour, Ere the high sun sucks vapors up to stain it. The long-hid crime-the well-disguised guilt. The Trial. Bring me some holy priest to lay the spectre!

Old Play

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

(4.)–CHAP. XI.
Nearest of blood should still be next in love;
And when I see these happy children playing,
While William gathers flowers for Ellen's ringlets,
And Ellen dresses flies for William's angle,
I scarce can think, that in advancing life,
Coldness, unkindness, interest, or suspicion,
Will e'er divide that unity so sacred,
Which Nature bound at birth.

Anonymous.

I.
Assist me, ye friends of Old Books and Old Wine,
To sing in the praises of sage Bannatyne,

1 Sir Walter Scott was the first President of the Club, and wrote these verses for the anniversary dinner of March, 186. -See Life, vol. vii. p.

137,

more.

more.

ume more.

Who left such a treasure of old Scottish lore

VI. As enables each age to print one volume more. As bitter as gall, and as sharp as a zazor, One volume more, my friends, one volume and feeding on herbs as a Nebuchadnezzar," more,

His diet too acid, his temper too sour, We'll ransack old Banny for one volume Little Ritson came out with his two volumes more.

But one volume, my friends, one volume more,

We'll dine on roast-beef and print one volume II. And first, Allan Ramsay, was eager to glean From Bannatyne's Hortus his bright Evergreen;

VII. Two little light volumes intended for four) The stout Gothic yeditur, next on the roll, Still leave us the task to print one volume more. With his beard like a brush and as black as a coal; One volume more, &c. And honest Greysteelthat was true to the core,

Lent their hearts and their hands each to one vol-
III.
His ways were not ours, for he cared not a pin

One volume more, &c.
How much he left out, or how much he put in;
The truth of the reading he thought was a

VIII.
bore,

Since by these single champions what wonders So this accurate age calls for one volume more.

were done, One volume more, &c. What may not be achieved by our Thirty and One ?

Law, Gospel, and Commerce, we count in our corps, IV.

And the Trade and the Press join for one volume Correct and sagacious, then came my Lord Hailes, And weigh'd every letter in critical scales,

One volume more, &c. But left out some brief words, which the prudish abhor,

IX. And castrated Banny in one volume more. Ancient libels and contraband books, I assure ye, One volume more, my friends, one volume We'll print as secure from Exchequer or Jury; more,

Then hear your Committee and let them count o'er We'll restore Banny's manhood in one volume The Chiels they intend in their three volumes more.

Three volumes more, &c.

more.

more.

V.

X. John Pinkerton next, and I'm truly concern'd They'll produce you King Jamie, the sapient and I can't call that worthy so candid as learn'd;

Sext, He raild at the plaid and blasphemed the clay. And the Rob of Dumblane and her Bishops coine more,

next; And set Scots by the ears in his one volume One tome miscellaneous they'll add to your store,

Resolving next year to print four volumes more. One volume more, my friends, one volume Four volumes more, my friends four volumes more,

more; Celt and Goth shall be pleased with one vol- Pay down your subscriptions for four volumes ume more.

more.

more.

1 In accordance with his own regimen, Mr. Ritson published and antiquities of Scotland. It consisted, at first, of a very few a volume entitled, “An Essay on Abstinence from Animal members,—gradually extended to one hundred, at which numFood as a Moral Duty. 1802."

ber it has now made a final pause. They assume the name of 2 See an account of the Metrical Antiquarian Researches of the Bannatyne Club from George Bannatyne, of whom little is Pinkerton, Ritson, and Herd, &c. in the Introductory Remarks known beyond that prodigious effort which produced his preson Popular Poetry, ante, p. 544, et seq.

ent honors, and is, perhaps, one of the most singular instances 3 James Sibbald, editor of Scottish Poetry, &c.

"The

of its kind which the literature of any country exhibits. His Yeditor," was the name given him by the late Lord Eldin, labors as an amanuensis were undertaken during the time of then Mr. John Clerk, advocate. The description of him here pestilence, in 1568. The dread of infection had induced him is very accurate.

to retire into solitude, and under such circumstances he had 4 David Herd, editor of Songs and Historical Ballads. 2 the energy to form and execute the plan of saving the literature vols. He was called Greysteel by his intimates, from having of the whole nation ; and, undisturbed by the general mournbeen long in unsuccessful quest of the romance of that ing for the dead, and general fears of the living, to devote

himself to the task of collecting and recording the triumphs of * This club was instituted in the year 1822, for the publication human genius in the poetry of his age and country ;-thus, or reprint of rare and curious works connected with the history amid the wreck of all that was mortal, employing himself in

name.

PP.

275-281.

measure.

To J. G. Lockhart, Esq. By not having writ what I clearly engraved I ON THE COMPOSITION OF MAIDA'S EPITAPH.

On the contrary, I, on the whole, think it better
To be whipp'd as the thief, than his lousy re

setter.
1824.

Thirdly-don't you perceive that I don't care a

boddle “Maidæ Marmorea dormis sub imagine Maida! Although fifty false metres were flung at may Ad januam domini sit tibi terra levis."

noddle, See Life of Scott, vol. vii.

For my back is as broad and as hard as Benlo " DEAR JOHN,—I some time ago wrote to inform his mon's, Fat worship of jaces, misprinted for dormis ; And I treat as I please both the Greeks and the But that several Southrons assured me the januam

Romans; Was a twitch to both ears of Ass Priscian's cra- Whereas the said heathens might rather look nium.

serious You, perhaps, may observe that one Lionel Ber- At a kick on their drum from the scribe of Ta guer,

lerius. In defence of our blunder appears a stout arguer: And, fourthly and lastly—it is my good pleasure. But at length I have settled, I hope, all these To remain the sole source of that murderous

clatters, By a rowt in the papers—fine place for such So stet pro ratione voluntas-be tractile, matters.

Invade not, I say, my own dear little dactyl; I have, therefore, to make it for once my com- If you do, you'll occasion a breach in our inter

mand, sir, That my gudeson shall leave the whole thing in To-morrow will see me in town for the wintermy hand, sir,

course, And by no means accomplish what James says But not at your door, at the usual hour, sir, you threaten,

My own pye-house daughter's good prog to de Some banter in Blackwood to claim your dogLatin.

Ergo-peace !-on your duty, your squeamishness I have various reasons of weight, on my word, sir, throttle, For pronouncing a step of this sort were absurd, And we'll soothe Priscian's spleen with a canny sir.

third bottle. Firstly, erudite sir, 'twas against your advising A fig for all dactyls, a fig for all spondees, I adopted the lines this monstrosity lies in ; A fig for all dunces and dominie Grundys; For you modestly hinted my English translation A fig for dry thrapples, south, north, east, and Would become better far such a dignified station. west, sir, Second-how, in God's name, would my bacon be Speates and raxes' ere five for a famishing guest,

course :

vour, sir,

sir ;

saved,

preserving the lays by which mortality is at once given to its patronage, superintends a particular volume, or set of te others, and obtained for the writer himself. He informs us of umes. Upon these occasions, a very moderate number of copies some of the numerous difficulties he had to contend with in are thrown off for general sale; and those belonging to the this self-imposed task. The volume containing his labors, Club are only distinguished from the others by being printed deposited in the Library of the Faculty of Advocates at Edin- on the paper, and ornamented with the decorations, peculiar to burgh, is no less than eight hundred pages in length, and very the Society. In this way several useful and eminently valea. neatly and closely written, containing nearly all the ancient ble works have recently been given to the publie for the first poetry of Scotland now known to exist.

time, or at least with a degree of accuracy and authenticity This Caledonian association, which boasts several names of which they had never before attained. ---Abridged from the distinction, both from rank and talent, has assumed rather a Quarterly Revier-ART. Pitcairn's Ancient Criminsi Tre broader foundation than the parent society, the Roxburghe als. February, 1831. Club in London, which, in its plan, being restricted to the 1 There is an excellent story (but too long for quotation) in the reprinting of single tracts, each executed at the expense of an Memoire of the Somervilles (vol. i. p. 240) about an old Lord individual member, it follows as almost a necessary conse- of that family, who, when he wished preparations to be made quence, that no volume of considerable size has emanated from for high feasting at his Castle of Cowthally, used to send on a it, and its range has been thus far limited in point of utility. billet inscribed with this laconic phrase, “ Speates and rezes," The Bannatyne, holding the same system with respect to the i. e. spits and ranges. Upon one occasion, Lady Somerville ordinary species of club reprints, levies, moreover, a fund (being newly married, and not yet skilled in her husband's among its members of about £500 a year, expressly to be hieroglyphics) read the mandates as spears and jacks, and applied for the editing and printing of works of acknowledged sent forth 200 armed horsemen, whose appearance on the importance, and likely to be attended with expense beyond moors greatly alarmed Lord Somerville and his guest, who the reasonable bounds of an individual's contribution. In this happened to be no less a person than King James III.-See way either a member of the Club, or a competent person under Scott's Miscellaneous Prose, vol. xxii. P

312.

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

And as Fatsman' and I have some topics for ha

ver, he'll . Be invited, I hope, to meet me and Dame Pev

eril, Upon whom, to say nothing of Oury and Anne,

you a Dog shall be deem'd if you fasten your Janua.

1824.

Lines,

ADDRESSED TO MONSIEUR ALEXANDRE, THE CELE

BRATED VENTRILOQUIST.

After the play, the following humorous address

(ascribed to an eminent literary character) was spoken with infinite effect by Mr. Mackay in the character of Meg Dodds.”—Edinburgh Weekly

Journal, 9th June, 1824. Enter Meg Dodds, encircled by a crowd of unruly

boys, whom a town's officer is driving off. That's right, friend—drive the gaitlings back, And lend yon muckle ane a whack; Your Embro' bairns are grown a pack,

Sae proud and saucy, They scarce will let an auld wife walk

Upon your causey.

1824.

[blocks in formation]

Of yore, in old England, it was not thought good
To carry two visages under one hood;
What should folk say to you? who have faces such

plenty, That from under one hood, you last night show'd

us twenty ! Stand forth, arch deceiver, and tell us in truth, Are you handsome or ugly, in age or in youth? Man, woman, or child-a dog or a mouse? Or are you, at once, each live thing in the house? Each live thing, did I ask ?-each dead implement,

too, A work-shop in your person,-saw, chisel, and

screw! Above all, are you one individual ? I know You must be at least Alexandre and Co. But I think you're a troop-an assemblage-a

mob, And that I, as the Sheriff, should take up the

job; And instead of rehearsing your wonders in verse, Must read you the Riot-Act, and bid you dis

perse. ABBOTSFORD, 23. April.3

But whar's the gude Tolbooth® gane now? Whar's the auld Claught,' wi' red and blue ! Whar's Jamie Laing and whar's John Doo ?8

And whar's the Weigh-house? Deil hae't I see but what is new,

Except the Playhouse !

Yoursells are changed frae head to heel, There's some that gar the causeway reel With clashing hufe and rattling wheel,

And horses canterin', Wha's fathers daunder'd hame as weel

Wi' lass and lantern.

1 Fatsman was one of Mr. James Ballantyne's many aliases. Another (to which Constable mostly adhered) was Mr. “Basketfill"-an allusion to the celebrated printer Baskerville.

2" When Monsieur Alerandre, the celebrated ventriloquist, was in Scotland, in 1824, he paid a visit to Abbotsford, where he entertained his distinguished host, and the other visitors, with his unrivalled imitations. Next morning, when he was about to depart, Sir Walter felt a good deal embarrassed as to the sort of acknowledgment he should offer; but at length, resolving that it would probably be most agreeable to the young foreigner to be paid in professional coin, if in any, he stepped aside for a few minutes, and on returning, presented him with this epigram. The reader need hardly be reminded that Sir Walter Scott held the office of Sheriff of the county of Selkirk."-Scotch newspaper, 1830.

The lines, with this date, appeared in the Edinburgh Annual Register of 1824.

4 James Laing was one of the Depute-Clerks of the city of Edinburgh, and in his official connection with the Police and the Council-Chamber, his name was a constant terror to evildoers. He died in February, 1806.

5 The Watch-hole.

6 The Tolbooth of Edinbargh, The Heart of Mid-Lothian, was pulled down in 1817.

7 The ancient Town Guard. The reduced remnant of this body of police was finally disbanded in 1817.

8 John Doo, or Dhu--a terrific-looking and high-spirited member of the Town Guard, and of whom there is a print by Kay, etched in 1784.

The Weigh-House, situated at the head of the West Bow, Lawnmarket, and which had long been looked upon as an encambrance to the street, was demolished in order to make way for the royal procession to the Castle, which took place on the 220 of August, 1822.

« AnteriorContinuar »