Imágenes de páginas

Or that your purposs end haiff tane:

Bot ye sall thaim ourdryve ilkane.

And, that ye trow this sekerly,
I feel within mine aged breast

My twa sonnys with yow sall I

Send to tak part of your trawaill;
A power that will not be repress'd.

For I wate weill thai sall nocht faill
-P. 428.

To be rewardyt weill at rycht,

Quhen ye ar heyit to yowr mycht." Bruce, like other heroes, observed omens,

BARBOUR'S Bruce, Book III. v. 856. and one is recorded by tradition. After he had retreated to one of the miserable places of shelter, in which he could venture to take

NOTE XXIX. some repose after his disasters, he lay stretched upon a handful of straw, and abandoned him

A hunted wanderer on the wild, self to his melancholy meditations. He had now been defeated four times, and was upon

On foreign shores a man exild.

--P. 428. the point of resolving to abandon all hopes of further opposition to his fate, and to go to This is not metaphorical. The echoes of the Holy Land. It chanced, his eye, while Scotland did actually he was thus pondering, was attracted by the

ring exertions of a spider, who, in order to fíx his With the bloodhounds that bayed for her fugitive web, endeavoured to swing himself from one king.' beam to another above his head. Involuntarily

A very curious and romantic tale is told he became interested in the pertinacity with

by Barbour upon this subject, which may be which the insect renewed his exertions, after abridged as follows:failing six times; and it occurred to him that

When Bruce had again got footing in Scothe would decide his own course according to land in the spring of 1307, he continued to be the success or failure of the spider. At the seventh effort the insect gained his object;

in a very weak and precarious condition,

gaining, indeed, occasional advantages, but and Bruce, in like manner, persevered and obliged' to fly before his enemies whenever carried his own. Hence it has been held

they assembled in force. Upon one occasion, unlucky or ungrateful, or both, in one of the while he was lying with a small party in the name of Bruce to kill a spider. The Archdeacon of Aberdeen, instead of Valence, Earl of Pembroke, with his in

wilds of Cumnock, in Ayrshire, Aymer de the abbot of this tale, introduces an Irish

veterate foe John of Lorn, came against him Pythoness, who not only predicted his good suddenly with eight hundred Highlanders, fortune as he left the island of Rachrin, but

besides a large body of men-at-arms. They sent her two sons along with him, to ensure brought with them a slough-dog, or bloodher own family a share in it.

hound, which, some say, had been once a

favourite with the Bruce himself, and there*Then in schort time men mycht thaim se Schute all thair galayis to the se,

fore was least likely to lose the trace. And ber to se baith ayr and ster,

Bruce, whose force was under four hundred And othyr thingis that mystir wer.

men, continued to make head against the And as the king apon the sand

cavalry, till the men of Lorn had nearly cut Wes gangand wp and doun, bidand?

off his retreat. Perceiving the danger of his Till that his menye redy war, His ost come rycht till him thar.

situation, he acted as the celebrated and illAnd quhen that scho him halyst hal,

requited Mina is said to have done in similar And priwé spek till him scho inacle ;

circumstances. He divided his force into And said, "Takis gud kep till my saw:

three parts, appointed a place of rendezvous, For or ye pass I sall yow schaw, Off your fortoun a gret party.

and commanded them to retreat by different Bot our all speceally

routes. But when John of Lorn arrived at A wyttring her I sall yow ma,

the spot where they divided, he caused the Quhat end that your purposs sall ta,

hound to be put upon the trace, which imFor in this land is nane trewly

mediately directed him to the pursuit of that Wate thingis to cum sa weill as I. Ye pass now furth on your wiage,

party which Bruce headed. This, therefore, To wenge the harme, and the owtrag,

Lorn pursued with his whole force, paying That Ingliss men has to yow done ;

no attention to the others. The king again Bot ye wat nocht quhatkyne forton

subdivided his small body into three parts, Ye'mon drey in your werraying, Bot wyt ye weill, with outyn lesing,

and with the same result, for the pursuers That fra ye now haiff takyn land,

attached themselves exclusively to that which Nane sa mychty, na sa strenth thi of hand, he led in person. He then caused his followers Sall ger yow pass owt of your countré

to disperse, and retained only his fosterTill all to yow abandownyt be. With in schort tyme ye sall be king,

brother in his company. The slough-dog fol. And haiff the land at your liking,

lowed the trace, and, neglecting the others, And ourcum your fayis all.

attached himself and his attendants to the Bot fele anoyis thole ye sall,

pursuit of the king. Lorn became convinced

that his enemy was nearly in his power, and I Needful, 2 Biding, waiting detached five of his most active attendants

to follow him, and interrupt his flight. They

And said ; "He is gretly to pryss; did so with all the agility of mountaineers.

For I knaw nane that litland is, "What aid wilt thou make?' said Bruce to

That at myscheyff gan help him swa.

I trow he suld be hard to sla, his single attendant, when he saw the five And he war lodyn | ewynly." men gain ground on him, 'The best I can,

On this wiss spak Schyr Aymery.' replied his foster-brother. 'Then,' said Bruce,

BARBOUR'S Bruce, Book V, v. 391. here I make my stand.' The five pursuers came up fast. The king took three to himself,

The English historians agree with Barbour leaving the other two to his foster-brother.

as to the mode in which the English pursued He slew the first who encountered him ; but

Bruce and his followers, and the dexterity observing his foster-brother hard pressed, he

with which he evaded them. The following sprung to his assistance, and despatched one

is the testimony of Harding, a great enemy of his assailants. Leaving him to deal with

to the Scottish'nation : the survivor, he returned upon the other two,

The King Edward with hoost hym sought full sore, both of whom he slew before his foster-brother But ay he fiecl into woodes and strayte forest, had despatched his single antagonist. When And slewe his men at staytes and daungers thore, this hard encounter was over, with a courtesy,

And at marreys and mires was ay full prest which in the whole work marks Bruce's char

Englyshmen to kyll withoutyn any rest;

In the mountaynes and cragges he slew ay where, acter, he thanked his foster-brother for his And in the nyght his foes he frayed full sere : aid. "It likes you to say so,' answered his follower; 'but you yourself slew four of

The King Edward with hornes and houndes him the five.' – True,' said the king, 'but only


With menne on fote, through marris, mosse, and because I had better opportunity than you. myre, They were not apprehensive of me when they Through wodes also, and mountens (wher thei saw me encounter three, so I had a moment's fought), time to spring to thy' aid, and to return

And euer the Kyng Edward hight inen greate hyre,

11ym for to take and by myght conquere; equally unexpectedly upon my own oppo But thei might hyin not gette by force ne by train, nents.

le satte by the fyre when thei went in the rain.' In the meanwhile Lorn's party approached

HARDYNG'S Chronicle, pp. 303-4. rapidly, and the king and his foster-brother betook themselves to a neighbouring wood.

Peter Langtoft has also a passage con. Here they sat down, for Bruce was exhausted cerning the extremities to which King Robert by fatigue, until the cry of the slough-hound was reduced, which he entitles came so near, that his foster-brother entreated Bruce to provide for his safety by retreating

De Roberto Brus et puga circum circa fit. further. "I have heard,' answered the king,

* And wele I understode that the Kyng Robyn that whosoever will wade a bow-shot length

Has drunken of that blode the drink of Dan Waryn.

Dan Waryn he les tounes that he held, down a running stream, shall make the slough

With wrong he mad a res, and misberyng of scheld, hound lose scent.--Let us try the experiment, Sithen into the forest he yecie naked and wode, for were yon devilish hound silenced, I should Als a wild beast, ete of the gras that stode, care little for the rest.'

Thus of Dan Waryn in his boke men rede, Lorn in the meanwhile advanced, and found

God gyf the King Robyn, that alle his kynde so

spede, the bodies of his slain vassals, over whom he Sir Robynet the Brus he durst noure abide, made his moan, and threatened the most That thei mad him restus, both in more and wod. deadly vengeance. Then he followed the


To while he mad this train, and did umwhile outhound to the side of the brook, down which

rage,' &c. the king had waded a great way. Here the PETER LANGTOFT'S Chronicle, vol. ii. 335. hound was at fault, and John of Lorn, after

8vo, London, 1817, long attempting in vain to recover Bruce's trace, relinquished the pursuit. Others,''says Barbour, 'affirm, that upon

Note XXX. this occasion the king's life was saved by an excellent archer who accompanied him, and For, glad of each pretext for spoil, who perceiving they would be finally taken A pirate sworn was Cormac Doil. by means of the bloodhound, hid himself in a thicket, and shot him with an arrow. In which way,' adds the metrical biographer,

A sort of persons common in the isles, as 'this escape happened I am uncertain, but

may be easily believed, until the introduction at that brook the king escaped from his

of civil polity. Witness the Dean of the Isles'

account of Ronay. At the north end of pursuers.'

Raarsay, be half myle of sea frac it, layes .Quhen the chasseris relyit war, And Jhon of Lorn had met thaim thar,

ane ile callit Ronay, maire then a myle in He tauld Schyr Aymer all the cass,

lengthe, full of wood and heddir, with anc How that the king eschapyt wass;

havein for heiland galeys in the middis of it, And how that he his five men slew,

and the same havein is guid for fostering of
And syne to the wode him drew.
Quhen Schyr Aymer herd this, in hy
He sanyt him for the ferly :

1 Matched.

-P. 430.

theives, ruggairs, and reivairs, till a nail, unparalleled in any part of Scotland, at least upon the peilling and spulzeing of poor pepill. in any which I have happened to visit. It This ile perteins to M'Gillychallan of Raarsay lies just upon the frontier of the Laird of by force, and to the bishope of the iles be Mac-Leod's country, which is thereabouts heritage'-SIR DONALD MUNRO's Descrip: divided from the estate of Mr. Maccallister of tion of the Western Islands of Scotland. Strath-Aird, called Strathnardill by the Dean Edinburgh, 1805, p. 22.

of the Isles. The following account of it is extracted from a journali kept during a tour

through the Scottish islands YOTE XXXI.

"The western coast of Sky is highly 'Alas! dear youth, the unhappy time,',

romantic, and at the same time displays Answer'd the Bruce, 'must bear the crime,

a richness of vegetation in the lower grounds Since, guiltier far than you,

to which we have hitherto been strangers. Even 1'-he paused; for Falkirk's woes

We passed three salt-water lochs, or deep Upon his conscious soul arose.-P. 431.

embayments, called Loch Bracadale, Loch

Einort, and Loch — and about 11 o'clock I have followed the vulgar and inaccurate opened Loch Slavig. We were now under tradition, that Bruce fought against Wallace, the western termination of the high ridge and the array of Scotland, at the fatal battle of mountains called Cuillen, or Quillin, or of Falkirk. The story, which seems to have Coolin, whose weather-beaten and serrated no better authority than that of Blind Harry, peaks we had admired at a distance from bears, that having made much slaughter Dunvegan. They sunk here upon the sea, during the engagement, he sat down to dine but with the same bold and peremptory aspect with the conquerors without washing the which their distant appearance indicated. filthy witness from his hands.

They appeared to consist of precipitous * Fasting he was, and had been in great need, sheets of naked rock, down which the Blooded were all his weapons and his weed; torrents were leaping in a hundred lines of Southeron lords scorn him in terins rude,

foam. The tops of the ridge, apparently And said, Behold yon Scot eats his own blood,

inaccessible to human foot, were rent and Then rued he sore, for reason bad be known,

split into the most tremendous pinnacles. That blood and land alike should be his own; With thein he long was, ere he got away,

Towards the base of these bare and preBut contrair Scots he fought not from that day.' cipitous crags the ground, enriched by the The account given by most of our historians,

soil washed down from them, is comparatively of the conversation between Bruce and

verdant and productive. Where we passed Wallace over the Carron river, is equally

within the small isle of Soa, we entered

Loch Slavig, under the shoulder of one of apocryphal. There is full evidence that Bruce was not at that time on the English

these grisly mountains, and observed that side, nor present at the battle of Falkirk; character, the mountains being


the opposite side of the loch was of a milder nay, that he acted as a guardian of Scotland,

down into steep green declivities. From the along with John Comyn, in the name of

bottom of the bay advanced a headland of Baliol, and in opposition to the English: high rocks, which divided its depth into two He was the grandson of the competitor, with

recesses, from each of which a brook issued. whom he has been sometimes confounded.

Here it had been intimated to us we would Lord Hailes has well described, and in some

find some romantic scenery; but we were degree apologized for, the earlier part of his

uncertain up which inlet we should proceed life.—'His grandfather, the competitor, had

in search of it. We chose, against our better patiently acquiesced in the award of Edward. His father, yielding to the times, had

served judgment, the southerly dip of the bay, where under the English banners. “But young

we saw a house which might afford us inforBruce had more ambition, and a more

mation. We found, upon inquiry, that there

is a lake adjoining to each branch of the restless spirit. In his earlier years he acted

bay; and walked a couple of miles to see upon no regular plan. By turns the partisan

that near the farm-house, merely because of Edward, and the vicegerent of Baliol, he seems to have forgotten or stifled his pre

the honest Highlander seemed jealous of the tensions to the crown. But his character

honour of his own loch, though we were

speedily convinced it was not that which developed itself by degrees, and in maturer

we were recommended to examine. It had age became firm and consistent.'-Annals

no particular merit, excepting from its neighof Scotland, p. 290, quarto, London, 1776.

bourhood to a very high cliff, or precipitous

mountain, otherwise the sheet of water had Note XXXII.

nothing differing from any ordinary low,

country lake. We returned and re-embarked These are the savage wilds that lie

in our boat, for our guide shook his head at North of Strathnardill and Dunskye. our proposal to climb over the peninsula, or

rocky headland which divided the two lakes. The extraordinary piece of scenery which I have here attempted to describe is, I think, 1 This is the Poet's own journal.-LOCKHART.

- P. 432.

In rowing round the headland, we were their weight inight exceed many tons. These surprised at the infinite number of sea-fowl, detached rocks, or stones, were chiefly what then busy apparently with a shoal of fish. is called plum-pudding stones. The bare

Arrived at the depth of the bay, we found rocks, which formed the shore of the lakes, that the discharge from this second lake were a species of granite. The opposite side forms a sort of waterfall, or rather a rapid of the lake seemed quite pathless and in. stream, which rushes down to the sea with accessible, as a huge inountain, one of the great fury and precipitation. Round this detached ridges of the Cuilin hills, sinks in place were assembled hundreds of trouts a profound and perpendicular precipice down and salmon, struggling to get up into the to the water. On the left-hand side, which fresh water: with a net we might have had we traversed, rose a higher and equally twenty salmon at a haul; and å sailor, with inaccessible mountain, the top of which no better hook than a crooked pin, caught strongly resembled the shivered crater of an a dish of trouts during our absence. Ad exhausted volcano. I never saw a spot in vancing up this huddling and riotous brook, which there was less appearance of vegetation we found ourselves in a most extraordinary of any kind. The eye rested on nothing but scene; we lost sight of the sea almost barren and naked crags, and the rocks on immediately after we had climbed over a low which we walked by the side of the loch ridge of crags, and were surrounded by were as bare as the pavements of Cheapside. mountains of naked rock, of the boldest and There are one or two small islets in the loch most precipitous character. The ground on which seem to bear juniper, or some such which we walked was the margin of a lake, low bushy shrub. Upon the whole, though which seemed to have sustained the constant I have seen many scenes of more extensive ravage of torrents from these rude neighbours. desolation, I never witnessed any in which The shores consisted of huge strata of naked it pressed more deeply upon the eye and the granite, here and there intermixed with bogs, heart than at Loch Corriskin; at the same and heaps of gravel and sand piled in the time that its grandeur elevated and redeemed empty water-courses. Vegetation there was it from the wild and dreary character of little or none; and the mountains rose so utter barrenness.' perpendicularly from the water edgę, that Borrowdale, or even Glencoe, is a jest to them. We proceeded a mile and a half up

NoTE XXXIII. . this deep, dark, and solitary lake, which was about two miles long, half a mile broad, and Men were they all of evil mien, is, as we learned, of extreme depth. The Down-look'd, unwilling to be seen.-P. 434. inurky vapours which enveloped the mountain ridges, obliged us by assuming a thousand The story of Bruce's meeting the banditti varied shapes, changing their drapery into

is copied, with such alterations as the ficall sorts of forms, and sometimes clearing off

titious narrative rendered necessary, from all together. It is true, the mist made us

a striking incident in the monarch's history, pay the penalty by some heavy and downright

told by Barbour, and which I shall give in showers, from the frequency of which a High- the words of the hero's biographer. It is the land boy, whom we brought from the farm,

sequel to the adventure of the bloodhound, told us the lake was popularly called the

narrated in Note XXIX. It will be rememWater-kettle. The proper name is Loch

bered that the narrative broke off, leaving Corriskin, from the deep corrie, or hollow,

the Bruce escaped from his pursuers, but in the mountains of Cuilin, which affords the worn out with fatigue, and having no other basin for this wonderful sheet of water. It

attendant but his foster-brother. is as exquisite a savage scene as Loch Katrine . And the gude king held forth his way, is a scene of romantic beauty. After having

Betuix hiin and his man, quhill thai

Passyt owt throw the forest war; penetrated so far as distinctly to observe the

Syne in the more thai entryt thar. termination of the lake under an immense

It wes bathe hey, and lang, and breid; precipice, which rises abruptly from the And or thai halff it passyt had, water, we returned, and often stopped to Thai saw on syd thre men cummand, admire the ravages which storms must have

Lik to lycht men and wauerand.

Swerdlis thai had, and axy's als; made in these recesses, where all human

And ane off thaim, apon his hals, witnesses were driven to places of inore A mekill boundyn wethir bar. shelter and security. Stones, or rather large Thai met the king, and hailst 2 him thar: masses and fragınents of rocks of a composite

And the king thaim thar hailsing yauld 3 ;

And askyt thaim quethir thai wauld. kind, perfectly different from the strata of

Thai said, Robert the Bruyss thai soucht the lake, were scattered upon the bare rocky For mete with him giff that thai moucht, beach, in the strangest and most precarious Thar duelling with him wauld thai ina situations, as if abandoned by the torrents The king said, “Giff that ye will swa, which had borne them down from above.

Haldys furth your way with me,

And 1 sall ger yow sone him se. Some lay loose and tottering upon the ledges of the natural rock, with so little security, 1 Neck, shoulders.

2 Hailedi. that the slightest push moved them, though 3 Yielded, returned,

4 Make,

The king wp blenkit hastily,
And saw his man slepand him by;
And saw cummand the tothyr thre,
Deliuerly on fute gat he;
And drew his suerd owt, and thaim mete,
And, as he yude, his fute he set
Apon his man, weill hewyly.
He waknyt, and raiss disily:
For the slep maistryt hym sway,
That or he gat wp, ane off thai,
That come for to sla the king,
Gaiff hym a strak in his rysing,
Swa that he mycht help him no mar.
The king sa straitly stadi wes thar,
That he wes neuir yeyt sa stal.
Ne war the armyng 2 that he had,
He had been dede, for owtyn wer.
But nochit for this on sic maner
He helpyt him, in that bargayne 4,
That thai thre tratowris he has slan,
Throw Goddis grace, and his inanheid.
His fostyr-brothyr thar was dede.
Then wes he wondre will of wayn 5,
Quhen he saw him left allane,
His fostyr-brodyr menyt he:
And waryit 6 all the tothyr thre.
And syne hys way tuk him allane,
And rycht towart his tryst 7 is gane.'

The Bruce, Book V. v. 405.

• Thai persawyt, be his speking,
That he wes the selwyn Robert king.
And chaungyt contenance and latel;
And held nocht in the fyrst state.
For thai war fayis to the king :
And thoucht to cum in to sculking,
And duell with him, quhill that thai saw
Thar poynt, and bryng hin than off daw.
Thai grantyt till his spek forthi 2,
Bot the king, that wes witty,
Persawyt weill, by thar hawing,
That thai luffyt him na thing :
And said, "Falowis, ye mon, all thre,
Forthir aqwent till that we be,
All be your selwyn furth ga;
And, on the samyn wyss, we twa
Sall folow behind weill ner."
Quoth thai, “Schyr, it is na myster 3
To trow in ws ony ill."
"Xane do I," said he; "bot I will,
That yhe ga fourth thus, quhill we
Better with othyr knawin be."-
“We grant," thai said, "sen ye will swa :"
And furth apon thair gate gan ga.

Thus yeid thai till the nycht wes ner,
And than the formast cummyn wer
Till a waist housband houss; and thar
Thai slew the wethir that thai bar:
Anil slew fyr for to rost thar mete;
And askyt the king giff he wald ete,
And rest him till the mete war dycht.
The king, that hungry was, Ik hycht,
Assentyt till thair spek in hy.
Rot he said, he wald anerry
At a fyr; and thai all thre
On na wyss with thaim till gyddre be.
In the end off the houss thai suld ma
Ane othyr fyr; and thai did swa.
Thai drew thaim in the houss end,
And halıf the wethir till him send.
And thai rostyt in by thair mete;
And fell rycht freschly for till ete.
For the king weill lang fastyt had;
And had rycht mekill trawaill mad :
Tharfor he eyt full egrely.
And quhen he had etyn hastily,
He had to slep sa mekill will,
That he moucht set na let thar till.
For quhen the wanys * fillyt ar,
Men worthys 5 hewy euirmar;
And to slepe crawys hewynes.
The king that all furtrawaillyt wes,
Saw that him worthyt slep nedwayis.
Till his fostyr-brodyr he sayis;
“May I traist in the, me to waik,
Till Ik a little sleping tak?"-
"Ya, Schyr," he said, " till I may drey,"
The king then wynkyt a litill wey ;
And slepyt nocht full encrely;
But glitfnyt wp oft sodanly.
For he had dreid off thai thre men,
That at the tothyr fyr war then,
That thai his fais war he wyst;
Tharfor he slepyt as foule on twyst 8.
The king slepyt bot

a litill than;
Quhen sic slep fell on his man,
'That he mycht nocht hald wp his ey,
Bot fell in slep, and rowtyt hey.
Now is the king in gret perile:
For slep he swa a lítill quhile,
He sall be ded, for owtyn dreid.
For the thre tratours tuk gud heid,
That he on slep wes, and his man.
In full gret hy thai raiss wp than,
And drew the suerdis hastily;
And went towart the king in hy,
Quhen that thai saw him sleip swa,
And slepand thoucht thei wald him sla.

And mermaid's alabaster grot,
Who bathes her limbs in sunless well,
Deepin Strathaird's enchanted cell.

---P.437. Imagination can hardly conceive anything more beautiful than the extraordinary grotto discovered not many years since upon the estate of Alexander Mac-Allister, Esq., of Strathaird. It has since been much and deservedly celebrated, and a full account of its beauties has been published by Dr. MacLeay of Oban. The general impression may perhaps be gathered from the following extract from a journal, which, written under the feelings of the moment, is likely to be more accurate than any attempt to recollect the impressions then received.--'The first entrance to this celebrated cave is rude and unpromising ; but the light of the torches, with which we were provided, was soon reflected from the roof, floor, and walls, which seem as if they were sheeted with marble, partly smooth, partly rough with frost-work and rustic ornaments, and partly seeming to be wrought into statuary. The floor forms a steep and difficult ascent, and might be fancifully compared to a sheet of water, which, while it rushed whitening and foaming down a declivity, had been suddenly arrested and consolidated by the spell of an enchanter. Upon attaining the summit of this ascent, the cave opens into a splendid gallery, adorned with the most dazzling crystallizations, and finally descends with rapidity to the brink of a pool, of the most 1 So dangerously situated 2 Had it not been for the armour he wore, 3 Nevertheless.

4 Fray, or dispute. 5 Much afflicted.

6 Cursed. 7 The place of rendezvous appointed for his soldiers.

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