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throw it out, never to return. Any retardation would make an ellipse; any acceleration, an hyperbola.

Another way of looking at it: The point of nearest approach to the sun is called the perihelion. Given any definite perihelion, say ten millions of miles, and only one parabola is possible; but there might be myriads of myriads of ellipses and hyperbolas. So that by the doctrine of probabilities, there are myriads of myriads of chances to one against a parabolic orbit. In the small part of an orbit subjected to our observation, parabolas, hyperbolas, and ellipses closely resemble one another; so that we are thrown back upon general considerations such as I have adduced. If we knew of any reason on the part of the Almighty for launching a comet into a parabolic path, and keeping it therein by force, we could believe that such a thing existed. As to hyperbolas, a few such orbits are thought to have been found. Then of those which are generally treated as parabolas, some may by possibility turn out to be hyperbolas. To sum up: many of the orbits are certainly ellipses, most of the rest are probably so, and a few may be hyperbolas. DO THE COMETS RETURN?

Those which move in ellipses do. Those which move in hyperbolas do not, unless perchance they wander into the neighborhood of other systems, and are deflected into new paths. Of their return to our system on this condition, there is hardly the faintest prospect. Of those which come back to the sun, some are gone scores, some hundreds, perhaps some of them thousands of years. But in due time they will reappear to the generations that come after us in the long vista of time. Thus Halley predicted that one whose period he had found to be seventy-five years, would return long after his death, and he called on posterity to remember that the prediction had been made by an Englishman.

May we not hope that the Hand which thus guides a material world according to material laws, will graciously and in perfect consistency with the laws and the freedom of spiritual being, direct our career through the ages of the ages! Let not our personal insignificance awaken distrust of his care. The hand that stretches abroad the orbit of a comet, traces the outline of a leaf. To him nothing created is small, as nothing is great. What is the length and what the breadth of the universe to him whose presence pervades immensity? The universe,

Which lies amid the night as lies a pearl Hid in the tresses of a Hindoo bride.

Oh, realm of darkness, evermore engulfing our barque of light! Appalling infinitudes, lit by no star-gleam, ye are the abode of him who hath said, "I dwell in the thick darkness." Heaven, even the heaven of heavens, can not contain him. The universe flashes upon the cloud of infinite space the mighty legend, "God is great," and the cloud answers back in thunder tones, "Nothing is great but God."


But now the dawn came. Yonder in the east were four planets in a magnificent group-fiery Mars, and belted Jupiter; Saturn, gorgeous with rings and satellites; and Venus,

"Fairest of stars, last in the train of night, If better thou belong not to the dawn,

Sure pledge of day that crown'st the smiling morn With thy bright circlet."

The bridegroom sun was coming, and earth put on her beautiful attire. All her garments were myrrh, and aloes, and cassia. Northward, the forests of pine and fir breathed forth their balm. Southward, tropical gardens dripped with dew. The air was heavy with odors; and flower censers, exhaling sweetest incense, swung to and fro. Near at hand a bird began to carol his morning song. Thus ended my "Night with a Comet." [Applause.]


Christopher Columbus was the last of the great dreamers who dreamed in earnest the dream of the Crusade. He was a pure idealist, while he was the most illustrious "man of action" of his time, the pioneer of that daring band who made discovery their holy warfare, and who seemed to see their way across the "Sea of Darkness" to a "New Jerusalem" in the great continent of the West. He forms the vital link between the romantic enterprise of medieval Europe and the larger romance of the Elizabethan adventurers, who gave a new vision to the imagination, and a new theatre to the commerce and politics of mankind.

This crusading fervor of Columbus, which fed the fire of his patient enthusiasm for Western discovery, is quite too little regarded in popular estimates of his character and life. Far from being wholly a man of the new age, like Prince Henry of Portugal, absorbed in the practical work of discovery and in the future which it opened to commerce, he was a man who nursed his spirit on the heroic traditions of the bygone generations. He struck his roots more deeply, perhaps, than any other man of his time into the age which was ending, while he believed that God was making him an instrument in opening an entirely new era in the history of the world. And it is always thus. The men who make new eras are always the strongest links between the past and the future. Those who mark the great steps of progress are those who maintain the unbroken continuity of the history of our race. He was a "Hebrew of the Hebrews," who brought the Gentiles in as free citizens of the Kingdom of Heaven.

The westward expeditions of Julius Cæsar stand in a very real relation to the expeditions and discoveries of Columbus. They are divided by more than fifteen centuries, but no event of kindred character and importance lies between them. Columbus stands next to Cæsar as the author of an immense enlargement of the boundaries of the civilized world. Cæsar and his house traced the western boundaries of Europe, and brought its foremost modern races on to the theatre of civilization. Columbus traced the bounds of the great world, and gave to man the full possession of his sphere. Between the two lies the middle age, the most notable facts of whose history, from our present point of view, are the conquests of Charlemagne and the Crusade. But the conquest of Cæsar opened the way for something more than civilization. St. Paul, in his consuming desire to push westward the conquests of the Gospel, was moved by the same impulse. It is certainly a very noteworthy fact that the liberal party in Rome, of whose traditions Cæsar was the heir, seems to have been impelled by strong instinct westward among the hardy peoples with whom lay the future of humanity; whither the same impulse in a diviner form urged the chief of the Apostles, to preach that Gospel whose mission it is not to destroy men's lives, but to save.t

Allowing for the difference of scale, the conquests of Cæsar produced much the same kind of stir at Rome which the expedition of Columbus aroused in Europe. It was in a high sense, in both cases, the great sensation of the time. Nothing stirs man like the expansion of the horizon of his

*The Nineteenth Century.

Space is precious, or I would quote at length the remarkable speech which Tacitus puts into the mouth of the Emperor Claudius (Ann. xi. 24), in which this policy is very nobly developed. The tradition of an inclusive policy, which was handed down through Marius, Cæsar, and the imperial house, was not suffered to perish. A greater than Claudius wrought out the idea on a wider theatre when Gregory the Great struck the key-note of the inclusive policy of the Latin Church. Gregory's letters to Augustine (Bæda, B. i. ch. 27-30) have a closer relation to that speech of Claudius than may at first sight appear.

life. It seems to lift humanity bodily to a higher platform, and to give to it the command of a wider world. It is like the opening of a new spring to the vital fountain; it sends the life-blood at once surging more swiftly through the frame. We may say with confidence that whatever, by reenforcing the vital springs, bestows new power on man, is the best benediction that can reach him. And it was this which Columbus bestowed on Western Europe. Men's hearts beat with new energy and exultation; life seemed more large and free; it leaped to a new vantage-ground, and surveyed with thrilling joy the wide and splendid horizon which was unveiled.* Like David, man gives thanks to God at such times, "who has brought him out into a large place." For, above all things, man needs room to grow. The sphere of his tasks is too narrow for the range of his power. A great joy possesses him when he gets his eye on a wider, fairer realm beyond it, where enterprise may have free course and imagination boundless range. If hope saves us as immortals, imagination saves us as citizens of this world. That which enables man to breathe and work more freely in the anguish (angustiæ, narrows) of the present is the range of his imagination through wider and brighter worlds. It would be curious to trace the influence of Continental travel-the vision of snow-peaks in the upper air, and all the breadth and splendor of the mountain lands, to which we of the nineteenth century make our pilgrimage-on that enlargement of ideas and habits which is so marked a feature of our times. Murray's handbooks are in a way sacred books for our generation. But they too had their beginning in the higher regions. Shelley, Coleridge, and above all Byron, are the true fathers of the romance of travel, which is the mild form in which we take our romance in these easy and wealthy days.

+ Peter Martyr writes to Pomponius Lætus: "I feel a wonderful exultation of spirits when I converse with intelligent men who have returned from these regions. It is like an accession of wealth to a miser. Our minds, soiled and debased by the common concerns of life and the vices of society, become elevated and ameliorated by contemplating such glorious events.


"Every one that loveth is born of God."--I John iv. 7.

Common to all races,

Common to us all,
Are the loving faces,
Faces great and small.
Faces of our mothers,

Lighting up our home;
Faces of our brothers,

As the world we roam.
Faces, loving faces,

Lifting up their light,
With a thousand graces,
Shining in the night;
Lighting up with glory

All this darkened earth,
Telling us the story

Of our heavenly birth.

For, in holy faces,

Faces full of love, We may find the traces Of our God above.

So to all the races,
So to us and all,
By these loving faces
God to us doth call.




Years passed on, several years; during this period I had increased considerably in stature and in strength, and, let us hope, improved in mind, for I had entered on the study of the Latin language. The very first person to whose care I was intrusted for the acquisition of Latin was an old friend of my father, a clergyman who kept a seminary at a town the very next we visited after our departure from "the Cross." Under his instruction, however, I continued only a few weeks, as we speedily left the place. "Captain," said this divine, when my father came to take leave of him on the eve of our departure, "I have a friendship for you, and therefore wish to give you a piece of advice concerning this son of yours. You are now removing him from my care; you do wrong, but we will let that pass. Listen to me: there is but one good school book in the world-the one I use in my seminary-Lilly's Latin Grammar, in which your son has already made some progress. If you are anxious for the success of your son in life, for the correctness of his conduct and the soundness of his principles, keep him to Lilly's Grammar. If you can by any means, either fair or foul, induce him to get by heart Lilly's Latin Grammar, you may set your heart at rest with respect to him; I, myself, will be his warrant. I never yet knew a boy that was induced, either by fair means or foul, to learn Lilly's Latin Grammar by heart, who did not turn out a man, provided he lived long enough.” My father, who did not understand the classical languages, received with respect the advice of his old friend, and from that moment conceived the highest opinion of Lilly's Latin Grammar. During three years I studied Lilly's Latin Grammar under the tuition of various schoolmasters, for I traveled with the regiment, and in every town in which we were stationary I was invariably (God bless my father!) sent to the classical academy of the place. It chanced, by good fortune, that in the generality of these schools the grammar of Lilly was in use; when, however, that was not the case, it made no difference with my educational course, my father always stipulated with the masters that I should be daily examined in Lilly. At the end of three years I had the whole by heart; you had only to repeat the first two or three words of any sentence in any part of the book, and forthwith I would open cry, commencing without blundering and hesitation, and continue till you were glad to beg me to leave off, with many expressions of admiration at my proficiency in the Latin language. Sometimes, however, to convince you how well I merited these encomiums, I would follow you to the bottom of the stairs, and even into the street, repeating in a kind of sing-song measure the sonorous lines of the golden schoolmaster. If I am here asked whether I understood anything of what I had got by heart, I reply "Never mind, I understand it all now, and believe that no one ever yet got Lilly's Latin Grammar by heart when young, who repented of the feat at a mature age."


And, when my father saw that I had accomplished my task, he opened his mouth, and said, "Truly, this is more than I expected. I did not think that there had been so much in you, either of application or capacity; you have now learnt all that is necessary, if my friend Dr. B————'s opinion was sterling, as I have no doubt it You are still a child, however, and must yet go to school, in order that you may be kept out of evil company. Perhaps you may still contrive now you have exhausted the barn, to pick up a grain or two in the barnyard. You are still ignorant of figures, I believe, not that I would mention figures in the same day with Lilly's Grammar."

in the north, or in


These words were uttered in a place called the road to the north, to which, for some time past, our corps had been slowly advancing. I was sent to the school of the place, which chanced to be a day school. It was a somewhat extraordinary one, and a somewhat extraordinary event occurred to me within its walls.

It occupied part of the farther end of a small plain, or square, at the outskirts of the town, close to some extensive bleaching fields. It was a long low building of one room, with no upper story; on the top was a kind of wooden box, or sconce, which I at first mistook for a pigeon-house, but which in reality contained a bell, to which was attached a rope, which passing through the ceiling, hung dangling in the middle of the school-room. I am the more particular in mentioning this appurtenance, as I had soon occasion to scrape acquain

tance with it in a manner not very agreeable to my feelings. The master was very proud of his bell, if I might judge from the fact of his eyes being frequently turned to that part of the ceiling from which the rope depended. Twice every day, namely, after the morning and evening tasks had been gone through, were the boys rung out of school by the monotonous jingle of this bell. This ringing out was a rather lengthy affair, for, as the master was a man of order and method, the boys were only permitted to go out of the room one by one; and as they were rather numerous, amounting, at least, to one hundred, and were taught to move at a pace of suitable decorum, at least a quarter of an hour elapsed from the commencement of the march before the last boy could make his exit. The office of bell-ringer was performed by every boy successively; and it so happened that, the very first day of my attendance at the school, the turn to ring the bell had, by order of succession, arrived at the place which had been allotted to me; for the master, as I have already observed, was a man of method and order, and every boy had a particular seat, to which he became a fixture as long as he continued at the school.

So, upon this day, when the tasks were done and completed, and the boys sat with their hats and caps in their hands, anxiously expecting the moment of dismissal, it was suddenly notified to me, by the urchins who sat nearest to me, that I must get up and ring the bell. Now, as this was the first time I had been at the school, I was totally unacquainted with the process, which I had never seen, and, indeed, had never heard of till that moment. I therefore sat still, not imagining it possible that any such duty could be required of me. But now, with not a little confusion, I perceived that the eyes of all the boys in the school were fixed upon me. Presently there were nods and winks in the direction of the bell-rope, and, as these produced no effect, uncouth visages were made, like those of monkeys when enraged; teeth were gnashed, tongues were thrust out, and even fists were bent at me. The master, who stood at the end of the room, with a huge ferule under his arm, bent full upon me a look of stern appeal; and the ushers, of whom there were four, glared upon me, each from his own particular corner, as I vainly turned, in one direction and another, in search of one reassuring look.

But now, probably in obedience to a sign from the master, the boys in my immediate neighborhood began to maltreat me. Some pinched me with their fingers, some buffeted me, whilst others pricked me with pins, or the points of compasses. These arguments were not without effect. I sprang from my seat, and endeavored to escape along a double line of benches, thronged with boys of all ages, from the urchin of six or seven, to the nondescript of sixteen or seventeen. It was like running the gauntlet; every one, great or small, pinching, kicking, or otherwise maltreating me as I passed by. Goaded on in this manner, I at length reached the middle of the room, where dangled the bell-rope, the cause of all my sufferings. I should have passed it-for my confusion was so great, that I was quite at a loss to comprehend what all this could mean, and almost believed myself under the influence of an ugly dream-but now the boys, who were seated in advance in the row, arose with one accord, and barred my further progress; and one, doubtless more sensible than the rest, seizing the rope, thrust it into my hand. I now began to perceive that the dismissal of the school, and my own release from torment, depended upon this self-same rope. I therefore, in a fit of desperation, pulled it once or twice, and then left off, naturally supposing that I had done quite enough. The boys who sat next the door, no sooner heard the bell, than rising from their seats, they moved out at the door. The bell, however, had no sooner ceased to jingle, than they stopped short, and, turning round, stared at the master, as much as to say, "What are we to do now?" This was too much for the patience of the man of method, which my previous stupidity had already nearly exhausted. Dashing forward into the middle of the room, he struck me violently on the shoulders with his ferule, and snatching the rope out of my hand, exclaimed, with a stentorian voice, and genuine Yorkshire accent, "Prodigy of ignorance! dost not even know how to ring a bell? Must I myself instruct thee?" He then commenced pulling at the bell with such violence, that long before half the school was dismissed the rope broke, and the rest of the boys had to depart without their accustomed music.

was wilder, and less cultivated, and more broken with hills and hillocks. The people, too, of these regions, appeared to partake of something of the character of their country. They were coarsely dressed; tall and sturdy of frame; their voices were deep and guttural; and the half of the dialect which they spoke was unintelligible to my ears.

I often wondered where we could be going, for I was at this time as ignorant of geography as I was of most other things. However, I held my peace, asked no questions, and patiently awaited the issue.

But I must not linger here, though I could say much about the school and the pedagogue highly amusing and diverting, which, however, I suppress, in order to make way for matters of yet greater interest. On we went, northward, northward! and, as we advanced, I saw that the country was becoming widely different from those parts of merry England in which we had reviously traveled. It

Northward, northward, still! And it came to pass that, one morning, I found myself extended on the bank of a river. It was a beautiful morning of early spring; small white clouds were floating in the heaven, occasionally veiling the countenance of the sun, whose light, as they retired, would again burst forth, coursing like a racehorse over the scene-and a goodly scene it was. Before me, across the water, on an eminence, stood a white old city, surrounded with lofty walls, above which rose the tops of tall houses, with here and there a church or steeple. To my right hand was a long and massive bridge, with many arches and of antique architecture, which trayersed the river. The river was a noble one; the broadest that I had hitherto seen. Its waters, of a greenish tinge, poured with impetuosity beneath the narrow arches to meet the sea, close at hand, as the boom of the billows breaking distinctly upon a beach declared. There were songs upon the river from the fisher-barks; and occasionally a chorus, plaintive and wild, such as I had never heard before, the words of which I did not understand, but which, at the present time, down the long avenue of years, seem in memory's ear to sound like "Horam, coram, dago." Several robust fellows were near me, some knee-deep in water, employed in hauling the seine upon the strand. Huge fish were struggling amidst the meshesprincely salmon,-their brilliant mail of blue and silver flashing in the morning beam; so goodly and gay a scene, in truth, had never greeted my boyish eye.

And, as I gazed upon the prospect, my bosom began to heave and 'my tears to trickle. Was it the beauty of the scene which gave rise to these emotions? Possibly; for though a poor ignorant child-a balfwild creature-I was not insensible to the loveliness of nature, and took pleasure in the happiness and handiworks of my fellow-creatures. Yet, perhaps, in something more deep and mysterious the feelings which then pervaded me might originate. Who can lie down on Elvir Hill without experiencing something of the sorcery of the place? Flee from Elvir Hill, young swain, or the maids of Elle will have power over you, and you will go elf-wild!-so say the Danes. I had unconsciously laid myself down upon haunted ground; and I am willing to imagine that what I then experienced was rather connected with the world of spirits and dreams than with what I actually saw and heard around me. Surely the elves and genii of the place were conversing, by some inscrutable means, with the principle of intelligence lurking within the poor, uncultivated clod! Perhaps to that ethereal principle the wonders of the past, as connected with that stream, the glories of the present, and even the history of the future, were at that moment being revealed! Of how many feats of chivalry had those old walls been witness, when hostile kings contended for their possession?-how many an army from the south and from the north had trod that old bridge?—what red and noble blood had crimsoned those rushing waters?-what strains had been sung, ay, were yet being sung on its banks?-some soft as Doric reed; some fierce and sharp as those of Norwegian Skaldaglam; some as replete with wild and wizard force as Finland's runes, singing of Kalevala's moors, and the deeds of Woinomoinen! Honor to thee, thou island stream! Onward may thou ever roll, fresh and green, rejoicing in thy bright past, thy glorious present, and in vivid hope of a triumphant future!

And, as I lay on the bank and wept, there drew nigh me a man in the habiliments of a fisher. He was bare-legged, of a weatherbeaten countenance, and of stature approaching to the gigantic. "What is the callant greeting for?" said he, as he stopped and surveyed me. "Has onybody wrought ye ony harm?"

"Not that I know of," I replied, rather guessing at than understanding his question; "I was crying because I could not help it? I say, old cove, what is the name of this river?"

"Hout! I now see what you was greeting at-at your ain ignorance, nae doubt-'tis very great! Weel, I will na fash you with reproaches, but even enlighten ye, since you seem a decent man's bairn, and you speir a civil question. Yon river is called the Tweed; and yonder, over the brig, is Scotland. Did ye never hear of the Tweed, my bonny man?”

"No," said I, as I rose from the grass and proceeded to cross the bridge to the town at which we had arrived the preceding night; "I never heard of it; but now I have seen it, I shall not soon forget it!"


It was not long before we found ourselves in Edinburgh, or rather in the Castle, into which the regiment marched with drums beating, colors flying, and a long train of baggage-wagons behind. The Castle was, as I suppose it is now, a garrison for soldiers. Two other regiments were already there; the one an Irish, if I remember right, the other a small Highland corps.

It is hardly necessary to say much about this Castle, which everybody has seen; on which account, doubtless, nobody has ever yet thought fit to describe it-at least that I am aware. Be this as it may, I have no intention of describing it, and shall content myself with observing, that we took up our abode in that immense building, or caserne, of modern erection, which occupies the entire eastern side of the bold rock on which the Castle stands. A gallant caserne it was the best and roomiest that I had hitherto seen-rather cold and windy, it is true, especially in the winter, but commanding a noble prospect of a range of distant hills, which I was told were "the hieland hills," and of a broad arm of the sea, which I heard somebody say was the Firth of Forth.

My brother, who, for some years past, had been receiving his education in a certain celebrated school in England, was now with us; and it came to pass, that one day my father, as he sat at table, looked steadfastly on my brother and myself, and then addressed my mother: "During my journey down hither, I have lost no opportunity of making inquiries about these people, the Scotch, amongst whom we now are, and since I have been here I have observed them attentively. From what I have heard and seen, I should say that upon the whole they are a very decent set of people; they seem acute and intelligent, and I am told that their system of education is so excellent that every person is learned-more or less acquainted with Greek and Latin. There is one thing, however, connected with them which is a great drawback-the horrid jargon which they speak. However learned they may be in Greek and Latin, their English is execrable; and yet I'm told it is not so bad as it was. I was in company the other day with an Englishman who has resided here many years. We were talking about the country and the people. 'I should like both very well,' said 'were it not for the language. I wish sincerely our Parliament, which is passing so many foolish acts every year, would pass one to force these Scotch to speak English.' 'I wish so, too,' said he. The language is a disgrace to the British government; but, if you had heard it twenty years ago, captain!-if you had heard it as it was spoken when I first came to Edinburgh!" "

"Only custom," said my mother. "I dare say the language is now what it was then."

"I don't know," said my father; "though I dare say you are right; it could never have been worse than it is at present. But now to the point. Were it not for the language, which, if the boys were to pick it up, might ruin their prospects in life,-were it not for that, I should very much like to send them to a school there is in this place, which everybody talks about-the High School, I think they call it. 'Tis said to be the best school in the whole island, but the idea of one's children speaking Scotch-broad Scotch! I must think the matter over."

And he did think the matter over; and the result of his deliberation was a determination to send us to the school. Let me call thee up before my mind's eye, High School, to which, every morning, the two English brothers took their way from the proud old Castle through the lofty streets of the Old Town. High School-called so, I scarcely know why; neither lofty in thyself nor by position, being situated in a flat bottom; oblong structure of tawny stone, with many windows fenced with iron netting-with thy long hall below, and thy five chambers above, for the reception of the five classes. into which the eight hundred urchins, who styled thee instructress, were divided. Thy learned rector and his four subordinate dominies; thy strange old porter of the tall form and grizzled hair, hight Boee, and doubtless of Norse ancestry, as his name declares; perhaps of the blood of Bui hin Digri, the hero of northern song-the Jomsborg Viking who clove Thorsteinn Midlangr asunder in the dread sea battle of Horunga Vog, and who, when the fight was lost and his own two hands smitten off, seized two chests of gold with his bloody stumps, and, springing with them into the sea, cried to the scanty

relics of his crew, "Overboard now, all Bui's lads!" Yes, I remember all about thee, and how at eight of every morn we were all gathered together with one accord in the long hall, from which, after the litanies had been read (for so I will call them, being an Episcopalian) the five classes from the five sets of benches trotted off in long files, one boy after the other, up the five spiral staircases of stone each class to its destination; and well do I remember how we of the third sat hushed and still, watched by the eye of the dux, until the door opened, and in walked that model of a good Scotchman, the shrewd, intelligent, but warm-hearted and kind dominie, the respectable Carson.

And in this school I began to construe the Latin language, which I had never done before, notwithstanding my long and diligent study of Lilly, which illustrious grammar was not used at Edinburgh, nor indeed known. Greek was only taught in the fifth or highest class, in which my brother was; as for myself, I never got beyond the third during the two years that I remained at this seminary. I certainly acquired a considerable insight into the Latin tongue; and, to the scandal of my father and horror of my mother, a thorough proficiency in the Scotch, which, in less than two months, usurped the place of the English, and so obstinately maintained its ground, that I still can occasionally detect its lingering remains. I did not spend my time unpleasantly at this school, though, first of all, I had to pass through an ordeal.

"Scotland is a better country than England," said an ugly, bleareyed lad, about a head and shoulders taller than myself, the leader of a gang of varlets who surrounded me in the play-ground, on the first day, as soon as the morning lesson was over. "Scotland is a far better country than England, in every respect."

"Is it?" said I. "Then you ought to be very thankful for not having been born in England."

"That's just what I am, ye loon; and every morning when I say my prayers, I thank God for not being an Englishman. The Scotch are a much better and braver people than the English."

"It may be so," said I, "for what I know-indeed, till I came here, I never heard a word either about the Scotch or their country." "Are ye making fun of us, ye English puppy?” said the blear-eyed lad; "take that!" and I was presently beaten black and blue. And thus did I first become aware of the difference of races and their antipathy to each other.

"Bow to the storm, and it shall pass over you." I held my peace, and silently submitted to the superiority of the Scotch-in numbers. This was enough; from an object of persecution I soon became one of patronage, especially amongst the champions of the class. "The English," said the blear-eye lad, "though a wee bit behind the Scotch in strength and fortitude, are nae to be sneezed at, being far ahead of the Irish, to say nothing of the French, a pack of cowardly scoundrels. And with regard to the English country, it is na Scotland, it is true, but it has its gude properties; and, though there is ne'er a haggis in a' the land, there's an unco deal o' gowd and siller. I respect England, for I have an auntie married there."

The Scotch are certainly a most pugnacious people; their whole history proves it. Witness their incessant wars with the English in the olden time, and their internal feuds, highland and lowland, clan with clan, family with family, Saxon with Gael. In my time, the school-boys, for want, perhaps, of English urchins to contend with, were continually fighting with each other; every noon there was at least one pugilistic encounter, and sometimes three. In one month I witnessed more of these encounters than I had ever previously seen under similar circumstances in England. After all, there was not much harm done. Harm! what harm could result from short chopping blows, a hug, and a tumble? I was witness to many a sounding whack, some blood shed, "a blue ee," now and then, but nothing more. In England on the contrary, where the lads were comparatively mild, gentle and pacific, I had been present at more than one death caused by blows in boyish combats, in which the oldest of the victims had scarcely reached thirteen years; but these blows were in the jugular, given with the full force of the arm shot out horizontally from the shoulder.

But the Scotch-though by no means proficients in boxing (and how should they box, seeing that they have never had a teacher ?)— are, I repeat, a most pugnacious people; at least they were in my time. Anything served them, that is, the urchins, as a pretence for a fray, or, Dorically speaking, a bicker; every street and close was at feud with its neighbor; the lads of the school were at feud with the young men of the college, whom they pelted in winter with snow, and in summer with stones; and then the feud between the Old and New Town!

One day I was standing on the ramparts of the castle on the southwestern side which overhangs the green brae, where it slopes down into what was in those days the green swamp or morass, called by the natives of Auld Reekie the Nor Loch; it was a dark, gloomy day, and a thin veil of mist was beginning to settle down upon the prae and the morass. I could perceive, however, that there was a skirmish taking place in the latter spot. I had an indistinct view of two parties-apparently of urchins-and I heard whoops and shrill cries. Eager to know the cause of this disturbance, I left the castle, and descending the brae reached the borders of the morass, where was a runnel of water and the remains of an old wall, on the other side of which a narrow path led across a swamp. Upon this path, at a little, distance before me there was "a bicker." I pushed forward, but had scarcely crossed the ruined wall and runnel, when the party nearest to me gave way, and in great confusion came running in my direction. As they drew nigh, one of them shouted to me, "Wha are ye, mon? are ye o' the Auld Toon?" I made no answer. "Ha! ye are o' the New Toon; De'il tak ye, we'll moorder ye; " and the next moment a huge stone sung past my head. "Let me be, ye fule bodies,” said I, “I'm no of either of ye, I live yonder aboon in the castle." "Ah! ye live in the castle; then ye're an auld tooner; come gie us your help, man, and dinna stand there staring like a dunnot, we want help sair eneugh. Here are stanes."

For my own part I wished for nothing better, and, rushing forward, I placed myself at the head of my new associates, and commenced flinging stones fast and desperately. The other party now gave way in their turn, closely followed by ourselves; I was in the van, and about to stretch out my hand to seize the hindermost boy of the enemy, when, not being acquainted with the miry and difficult paths of the Nor Loch, and in my eagerness taking no heed of my footing, I plunged into a quagmire, into which I sank as far as my shoulders. Our adversaries no sooner perceived this disaster, than, setting up a shout, they wheeled round and attacked us most vehemently. Had my comrades now deserted me, my life had not been worth a straw's purchase, I should either have been smothered in the quag, or, what is more probable, had my brains beaten out with stones; but they behaved like true Scots, and fought stoutly around their comrade, until I was extricated, whereupon both parties retired, the night being near at hand.

"Ye are na a bad hand at flinging stanes," said the lad who first addressed me, as we now returned up the brae; "your aim is right dangerous, mon, I saw how ye skelpit them, ye maun help us agin thae New Toon blackguards at our next bicker."


He was no slinger, or flinger, but brandished in his right hand' the spoke of a cart-wheel, like my countryman Tom Hickathrift of old in his encounter with the giant of the Lincolnshire fen. Protected by a piece of wicker-work attached to his left arm, he rushed on to the fray, disregarding the stones which were showered against him, and was ably seconded by his followers. Our own party was chased half way up the hill, where I was struck to the ground by the baker, after having been foiled in an attempt which I had made to fling a handful of earth into his eyes. All now appeared lost, and Auld Toon was in full retreat. I myself lay at the baker's feet, who had just raised his spoke, probably to give me the coup de grace-it was an awful moment. Just then I heard a shout and a rushing sound; a wild-looking figure is descending the hill with terrible bounds; it is a lad of some fifteen years; he is bare-headed, and his red uncombed hair stands on end like hedgehogs' bristles; his frame is lithy, like that of an antelope, but he has prodigious breadth of chest; he wears a military undress, that of the regiment, even of a drummer, for it is wild Davy, whom a month ago I had seen enlisted on Leith Links to serve King George with drum and drumsticks as long as his services might be required, and who, ere a week had elapsed, had smitten with his fist Drum Major Elzigood, who, incensed at his inaptitude, had threatened him with his cane. He has been in confinement for weeks, this the first day of his liberation, and he is now descending the hill with horrid bounds and shoutings; he is now about five yards distant, and the baker, who apprehends that something dan-gerous is at hand, prepares himself for the encounter. But what avails the strength of a baker, even full grown?-what avails the defence of a wicker shield? what avails the wheel-spoke, should there be an opportunity of using it, against the impetus of an avalanche or a cannon ball?-for to either of these might that wild figure be compared, which, at the distance of five yards, sprang at once with head, hands, feet and body, all together, upon the champion of the New Town, tumbling him to the earth amain. And now it was the turn of the Old Town to triumph. Our late discomfited host, returning on its steps, overwhelmed the fallen champion with blows of every kind, and then, led on by his vanquisher, who had assumed his arms, namely, the wheel-spoke and wicker shield, fairly cleared the brae of their adversaries, whom they drove down headlong into the morass.

So to the next bicker I went, and to many more, which speedily followed as the summer advanced; the party to which I had given my help on the first occasion consisted merely of outlyers, posted about half way up the hill, for the purpose of overlooking the movements of the enemy.

Did the latter draw nigh in any considerable force, messengers were forthwith dispatched to the "auld toon," especially to the hy alleys and closes of the High Street, which forthwith would disgorge swarms of bare-headed and bare-footed "callants," who, with gestures wild and "eldrich screech and hollo," might frequently be seen pouring down the sides of the hill. I have seen upwards of a thousand engaged on either side in these frays, which I have no doubt were fuil as desperate as the fights described in the Iliad, and which were certainly much more bloody than the combats of modern Greece in the war of independence: the callants not only employed their hands in hurling stones, but not unfrequently slings, at the use of which they were very expert, and which occasionally dislodged teeth, shattered jaws, or knocked out an eye. Our opponents certainly labored under considerable disadvantage, being compelled not only to wade across a deceitful bog, but likewise to clamber up part of a steep hill before they could attack us; nevertheless, their determination was such, and suc 1 their impetuosity, that we had sometimes difficulty enough to maintain our own. I shall never forget one bicker, the last, indeed, which occurred at that time, as the authorities of the town, alarmed by the desperation of its character, stationed forthwith a body of police on the hillside, to prevent in future any such breaches of the peace.

It was a beautiful Sunday evening, the rays of the descending sun were reflected redly from the gray walls of the castle, and from the black rocks on which it was founded. The bicker had long since commenced, stones from sling and hand were flying, but the callants of the New Town were now carrying everything before them.

A full-grown baker's apprentice was at their head; he was foaming with rage, and had taken the field, as I was told, in order to avenge his brother, whose eye had been knocked out in one of the late bick


Onward, onward! and after we had sojourned in Scotland nearly two years, the long continental war had been brought to an end, Napoleon was humbled for a time, and the Bourbons restored to a land which could well have dispensed with them; we returned to England, where the corps was disbanded, and my parents with heir family retired to private life. I shall pass over in silence the events of a year, which offer little of interest as far as connected with me and mine. Suddenly, however, the sound of war was heard again. Napoleon had broken forth from Elba, and everything was in confusion. Vast military preparations were again made, our own corps was levied anew, and my brother became an officer in it; but the danger was soon over, Napoleon was once more quelled, and chained forever, like Pro netheus, to his rock. As the corps, however, though so recently levied, had already become a very fine one, thanks to my father's energetic drilling, the government very properly determined to turn it to some account, and, as disturbances were apprehended in Ireland about this period, it occurred to them that they could do no better than despatch it to that country.

In the autumn of the year 1815 we set sail from a port in Essex; we were some eight hundred strong, and were embarked in twoships, very large, but old and crazy; a storm overtook us when off Beachy Head, in which we had nearly foundered. I was awakened early in the morning by the howling of the wind, and the uproar on deck. I kept myself close, however, as is still my constant practice on similar occasions, and waited the result with that apathy and indifference which violent sea-sickness is sure to produce. We shipped several seas, and once the vessel missing stays-which, to do it justice, it generally did at every third or fourth tack-we escaped almost by a miracle from being dashed upon the foreland. On the eighth day of our voyage we were in sight of Ireland. The weather was now calm and serene, the sun shone brightly on the sea and on certain green hills in the distance, on which I descried what at first sight I believed to be two ladies gathering flowers, whish, however, on our nearer approach, proved to be two tall white towers, doubtless built for some purpose or other, though I did not learn for what. We entered a kind of bay, or cove, by a narrow inlet; it was a

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