Skip to main content

Full text of "Pen photographs of celebrated men and noted places, ghosts and their relations [microform] : tales, sketches, essays, etc., etc.,"

See other formats








'■'Corde et nuvm." 

^' ^■-^■--.^■^ ■.-><>-/"\_ -^ » - 



" Entered according to act of Parliament of Canada in the year 
A.D. 1873, by Daniel Clark, M.D., intheofficeot the Minister 
of Agriculture." 

P II K F A C E . 

An author is generally expected to give his reiisons for inflicting 
upon a long-suffering pul)lic a new work. Ilis pleadings to be 
heard in the noisy, restless conventions of the world may be ignored 
or repudiated, unless the stamp of public approval is upon hi* 
credentials. Should his piea for presenting his literary contribu- 
tions to the common fund be of a financial nature, the well known 
reticence of the scribe, would make the announcement of such a fact 
one of great delic.icy. If his wishes and hopes ar^^ based upon the 
conceit that his creations are children of immortality, then, are they 
not presented, and .seldom rea'ized. If his presentations, however 
worthy of acceptance, are prefaced with apologies for coming into 
existence, and in a sort of abashed, reluctant, " by your leave" atti- 
tude, step upon the stage, the reader is at once prejudiced against a 
work, in which the originator hmis 'If has no confidence. The author 
does not deem it necessary to give reasons, nor offer excuses, to an 
intelligent people, in asking a persual of these results of hours of re- 
creation enjoyed, free from the anxious, wearing and laborious 
drudgery '^f professional life. Maturer years might have left much 
unwritten of that herein recorded, and added much of more weighty 
import, but to di'J.sect is to di.sfigure, and such as photographs, 
are, comely or distorted, they are presented to a Canadian public. 
These sketches were the intermittent pen and ink dashes of several 
years duration, and contributed from time to time, to magazines and 
quarterlies of this, and other lands. Several of the characters por- 
trayed have passed away since they were written. The kindly sup- 
port already tendered to the author, before publication in book form 
is appreciated by him and he hopes, that a persual of these humble 
and varied efforts may uisliuci the reader.and beguile a leisure hour, 
" requesting him if he should find here and there something to 
please him, to rest assured that it wa; written, expressly for intelli- 
gent readers like himself, but entreating, should he find anything to 
dislike, to tolerate it as one of those articles, which the author has 
been obliged to write for readers of less refined taste." 

D. C. 

Princeton Ont. 


C A I R D 

IT will be remembered by many that Mr. Caird — 
once of P'rrol, Scotland, now of Glasgow — 
preached before the Royal Family at Craithic, Balmoral, 
some seventeen years ago, and that his sermon, "The 
Religion of common life," was published by the request 
of the late Prince Consort, while at Balmoral in the 
year 1857. where the writer had the pleasure of hear- 
ing him [)reach the second time before Her Majesty. 
Since then, he has acquired a world-wide reputation as 
one of Scotland's most eloquent divines. He was at 
that time spare in body and of medium height. His 
liair was coal black and straight. His temperament is 
what " bumpologists" would term nervobilious. A 
narrow, long face with high cheek-bones — thin lips and 
large sunken eyes, was nature's stamp of his Doric 
Origin, His text was "All are yours, &c." WhenLe 
rose to read the Psalm he was visibly agitated. His 
voice trembled a little, but it was sufficiently firm to 

2 I' FN I'HorodKAI'HSjt , 

give distinctness to his syllabic utterancen. His reatl- 
ing was not good ; it partook too much of that nasal, 
dolorous monotony - without emphasis, without vivac- 
ity, and 77/// —so orthodox among a certain class of 
psendo-puIi)it orators. It was plain that he read af- 
ter the style of some anli(|uated, defective model, and 
yet lacked not taste, nor had he any api)arent inii)ed"- 
ment in the vocal organs. I le read the chapter more 
like the semi-chant oi'a cloistered monk, than like the 
clastic, and distinct reading models of to-day, and were 
it not for the mournful cadences; of a tine tenor voice, 
superlatively soft, tliough somewhat muffled, the so- 
porific effects would have been overpowering. His 
prayers were full of faithful extracts from the Episco. 
pal prayer book. He stooped somewhat at first, but 
as he warmed to the work, he unbent himself,and stood 
straight as an arrow. The nervous, in weakness, was 
fast disapi)earing before the nervous in strength. He 
began to have confidence in himself and in his powers 
of persuasion. No drawling and negligent accentua- 
tion now, but the words came forth sharp, and distinct, 
as the crack of rifled guns. The choice language — 
the neat illustrations — the beautiful imagery, yet terse 
and cogent reasoning of the orator, had a wonderful 
mesmeric effect upon the congregation. A solemn 
stillness prevaded the little parish church. The slight- 
est rustle of silk, or satin, or movement of shoe, or el- 
bow, was unbearable, and an outrage on the domain of 
hearing. To listen, and catch every word, seemed to 
be a fulnessof joy, and to lOse one syllable was todrop 
a link from the chain of ineffable delight. Ever and 

L" A I R IJ. 3 

jinon his fine dark eye flashed fire, and passion, not in 
Affectation, and mere silly sentimcntalisni, but with gen- 
uine earnestness, and evident forgetfulness of congrega- 
tion, place, and occasion, in the delivery of his Mas- 
ters message. His voice mellowed into tenderness, as 
he described the struggle of life — its toils and pains — 
its losses and gains — its defeats and victories — its hours 
of despondency, and its hours of exultation, with all 
the sunshine, and clouds of a checjuered life. He car. 
ried us far into the regions of thcgreat Unknown. He 
pointed out to us, panoramic views of the Future — 
photographs of the sublime — indelibly written on the 
page of Inspiration. The camera obscura was the dark 
valley. Death, as drawn in profile by Caird, was hor- 
rible. The word portraiture, was that of a master 
mind, which was familiar with the fell-destroyer in all 
his multifarious manifestations. The peroration was 
fine, because effective. It v;as not mere verbal sym- 
phony. The soul was there. It was not the lifeless 
skeleton, beautiful even in li/elcssness^ but the living, 
breathing and ecstatic joy, or hallowed sadness, of a 
terrible earnestness. The hearers of Cicero always 
said, ** How pleasantly he speaks!" His classic pro- 
ductions were admired, but they excited no emotions, 
and stirred up no latent passions. The audience of 
Demosthenes, when be hurled his fierce phillipics 
against the Macedonian King, had no thoughts of ad- 
miration, as such, the Greeks (ried out " Let us go and 
fight Philip." Caird is a minor Demosthenes. His 
sermons, dwell not simply ui)on the ear as sweet and 
plea.sant melodies, but rouse to acts of moral heroism 


and Christian daring. Royalty and loyalty, (^ueonand 
Trinccs, lord and subject, felt the Divine afllatiis, dur- 
ing that sacred and j)recious hour. The blanched 
face, the tearful eye, the eager gaze, and the quivering 
lips were unc([uivocal homage, not only to the preacher, 
but to the day of holy insjjirations, and sweet reminis- 
cences. How such invective, satire, pathos, solemnity 
and cogent reasoning, crush by one fell blow all the 
sophistries of a well defended infidelity of the Colenso 
school of sceptics ! and how true are the v;ords of Bry- 
ant : — • 

"Truth crushed to death shall rise again, 
The eternal years of (lod are hers ; 

But error, wounded, writhes in pain. 
And dies among her worshippers," 

G U Tir R IE. 

Thomas (iI'ihrik has all ihc elements in his com- 
position, of a tragedian, or a comedian. A Kean, a 
Macrcady, or a Forrest, with all their training in the 
school of drama or elocution, could not portray in more 
forcible delineations, the varied passions of the human 
mind, by the muscular action of the countenance, than 
the recent occupant of St. John's Church, Edinburgh. 
Nature \\ is blessed him, with a most ungainly, and un- 
couth baJy. JIc is long in visage, plus long arms 
reaching down to his knees, with long legs to stand 
upon and long grey hairs, to adorn a well developed 
cranium. In short, the contour of the whole man may 
be summed up in the word — elurigation. The unwash- 
ed ^<^<?w///j' of I'klinburgh called him, in their patois and 
sotlo voce^ "Lang Tarn." We heard him preach the 
most of the sermons, now contained in a book called 
the "Saint's Inheritance." His style of delivery is un- 
i(iuc. He can have no successful imitator. We can- 
not compare his preaching, and composition to any 
one of the writings of the living or the dead. His ser- 
mons abound in apt illustrations drawn from nature. 
The composition is epigrammatic, and classic, with an 
occasional Doric word thrown in, to give some strug- 
gling idea point and unction. He docs not wade 
through long and weary sentences, with relative clauses 
in such redundancy, as to puzzle a Murray or a Bullion. 
Short, simple and concise is his motto. We never 


heard from his lips such nauseating technicalities, as 
" Hypostatical Union," the " tertium quid," the " ego 
and nonego," the *' Hypothetical realism," and "Cos - 
mothetic idealism" of philosophers. He eschews 
such as he would Diabolus. His delight is in hoary 
ruins — sad relics of the past, — in the sea and in all 
that is beautiful in the external world. Illustration, 
after illustration, is drav/n from the rolling billows — 
the roaring breakers — the rugged rocks of the ocean — 
the proud sliips, or the dismantled wrecks —the cry of 
the wild seamen, or the 

" Solitary shriek, the bubbling cry 
Of some strong swimmer in his agony." 

He carries you avv^iy among the ivy-covered relics of 
by-gone glories — where temp^ists howl on cold hearth- 
stones — where weird snowilikes dance a fairy reel 
round dismantled towers — through sloping loop-holes, 
in dark and winding passages, where weeped the soli- 
tary prisoner, and where his moans echoed in unison 
with the booming waves, of his sea-girt prison, or where 
the banquet was spread for the mailed warrior grim, and 
stern, or for the gay bridal cortege, gladsome in mel- 
ody and song. "With the master hand, by word pic- 
turing he takes you among the most sublime objects of 
nature — by the roaring cataracts — on the rugged 
mountains — into the wonders of the great extinct, stra- 
tified, and petrified, in the rocks of the primal ages. 
His magic wand, like Arabian wizard, transports you 
to celestial scenes, and starry wonders, and through 
sidereal zones, whose stars have never yet been numer- 


ically distinguished. His power lies in pictorial par- 
allel, which teaches truth and entrances at the same 
time. Guthrie's style of delivery has more of the/rv- 
titerin ;r than tlie suaviter in modo. It is true that a cur- 
rent of pathos runs through tiie subject matter of dis- 
course, but it is the thunderings, as well as the woo- 
ings, which display the man. When he is roused, he 
performs actions the most grotesque, awkward and 
ludicrous of which the beholder is not cognisant until 
the overpowering effect of the matchless oratory of the 
"old man eloquent" has been mellowed by the hand 
of time. 1 well renumber the bending, and bent form 
becoming erect, as climax after climax was reached,— 
the long hair smoothly parted on the brow, danced 
about the eyes — tlie long arms swung in circles, and 
5emi-circles round the tapering shoulders, like flails 
thrashing out the stubborn grain. The short truncat- 
ed swallow tails, of a dress coat, would occasionally 
burst the barriers of a (ieneva gown, and perform 
strange gja'ations in the air. The wide sleeves of the 
cloak — hke bat's wings — would lly in never ceasing 
voyages, now around the head, and anon around that 
detestable conventional barrier called a pulpit. But 
who could even smile ? Onward rushed the tumultu- 
ous thoughts on the tiptoe of expectation, until the 
finale brought us back to the world again. Caird drew 
us after him by 2i puissant intellection, but Guthrie by 
the cords of awe, or heaven-kindled sympathy and love. 
He is one of the kindliest and best of men. There is 
no cabin, lane, or alley, or street too mean or filthy 
for him to visit. We have n?.et him, times without 


number, in the Grass Mjrket, Cowgate, St. Mary's 
Wynd, Carruber's Close, where he was gathering into 
his ragged schools, " ones /nore unfortunate," like a 
guardian angel. How could the founder of such 
schools be other than the first of philanthropists ! 
Although now, by reason of ill health, his voice as a 
preacher is seldom heard, yet, as the author of " The 
Gospel in Ezekiel," ** The City: its Sins and Sor- 
rows," "Seed Time and Harvest," and as the Editor 
of the " Sunday Magazine," his name will live, and 
the chaste religious literature, which lias flowed, and will 
flow from his prolific pen can never die, as long as the 
Anglo-Saxon tongue exists, and, as long as its vigor, 
and beauty, are justly adrnired by the present, and 
will be, by succeeding generations. 


London is full of good preachers ; I speak of 
them in comparison to the ministers of the pro- 
vincial, and rural districts. The metropolis gathers 
into its omnivorous maw, the intellectually great of the 
nation, (xreat minds, by a sort of centripetal power, 
gravitate toward each other. It is in the Capital, where 
the representative powers meet, and from thence pul- 
sate in a never-ceasing stream the virus of scepticism, 
the mockery of materialism, the vapid sentimentalism 
of a depreciated Ciiristianity, or the high-toned spirit- 
uality of a living gospel. Yet, in all these phases of 
modes of thought, the lower stratum of mind was to 
a great extent overlooked. The pulpit dissertations of 
the London divines, were generally of a kind not to ex- 
cite the interest of a degenerate, and ignorant popu- 
lace ; I speak of the lower classes. The beautiful and 
chaste style of a modern Blair, had no heart in it to 
throb in unison with theirs. The abstractions of 
Lynch, only delight the giant minds of the mammoth 
city. The sermonizer who illustrates his dogmas by 
geology, mineralogy, botany, and astronomy, unless he 
has the descriptive, and analytical powers of Dick, the 
philosopher, or good "Old Humphrey," will never 
impress deeply the lethargic mind of the constant and 
ever bowed down son of toil, who struggles fiercely 
day ; y day for his daily bread. 

Spurgeon filled the breach. I had read the first 


series of his sermons, and thought them hght ? but I 
was anxious to hear him on account of his popularity. 
I had landed from a Dutch steamer, at tlic St. 
Catherine docks, on Sabbath morning, and hastening 
through rain and fog to Surrey Music ]Iall, procured 
a ticket for one shilling sterling, just as wc would have 
^done to attend a theatre. It admitted us before the 
.throng, which, at half-past nine o'clock, was literally 
<:rammed, before tiie iron gates of the garden. T\\c 
■ticket admitted us four Sabbaths, and " must be given 
up on the last date." "Service to commence at a 
quarter before eleven.'' The ticket \\as signed by 
Thomas Olney. Olney cV Son, 139 High Street, 
Borough, brought Spurgeon out — so to speak. They 
spared no pains by the press, and their influence, and 
mone}', to herald him as a counterpart of Whitfield. 
Their early estimate of his powers was just, and true. 
He fell like a living shell among the Londoners and 
took them by storm. Wiien I entered the line hall, 
the seats on the floor were crowded. The first gal- 
lery was full, and I thought myself fortunate to find a 
seat in the front of the second gallery. The platform, 
or orchestra, was also occupied by hundreds. It is half 
an hour ere the service begins, and the ticket holders 
still pour in. Where will the masses, now surging to 
and fro, in mud, and under a pelting rain, find room? 
When the gates were opened by the police the rush was 
as impetuous as the storming of a Bastile, or the tak- 
ing of a Malakoff. A subdued hum of conversation 
fills the building. On roy right, are two well-dressed 
young men, discussing the politics of the day. On my 


left, sits an old man, with sweat-bedewed bald head, 
and spectacles on nose, intently reading the " Times." 
Behind me are two ladies, apparently motlier and 
daughter, in earnest criticism about the relative merits 
of the pcrtormances of Madame Crrisi, Piccolomini and 
Mons. julien, at the grand concert held in the Crystal 
Palace at Sydenham, where had been recently sung, 
the sublime oratorios of Handel, by 3,000 performers. 
My heart beats "fast and furious" when memory, ever 
dear, recalls the "I know that my Redeemer liveth" of 
the Messiah, the war notes of " Judas Maccabeus," or 
the soul-stirring variations of the " Creation." 'I'iie 
dual behind me were evidently artists in the musical 
sphere. The murmurs of debate, and conversation, 
lilled the house with discordant notes. The whole 
audience seemed to be straining propriety, in order 
that it might cheat "father time." It shocked a stran- 
ger, to observe the utter want of reverence, in a pro- 
fessedly devout congregation, on a Sabbath morning- 
My reflections were suddenly cut short by the mellow, 
deep bass of some one filling to completeness the 
large hall, with the words of the hymn beginning — 

'• Stay, thou insulted Spirit, stay ! " 

The slow, distinct pronunciation — clear as a silver bell 
— struck my ear like a pleasant melody. At first, so 
completely did the sound fill the house, I was not able 
to trace the direction from whence it came. Intuit- 
ively, I turned my face to the platform, and there on 
the verge of it — in the midst of a sea of faces — stood 
Spurgeon. He seemed to spring from the midst of the 


crowd, as it by magic. Did you happen to meet him 
in the country, dressed in hodden gny^ you would sup- 
pose him to be a well-to-do Tarmer. He is si^uarebuilt 
and muscular. Had he been a sparring, sturdy pugil- 
ist of the "lancy," instead of being a r: 'tidier of the 
church militant, woe betide the poor wight, who might 
happen to get his head in "chancery" (under his arm). 
His features are round, and his forehead medium 
height, and full ; but, overshadowing the eyes greatly, 
detracting very much from their prominency. The 
eyes have that undefinable twinkle oifunniness about 
them, which is a sure indication of the possessor hav- 
ing a fimd of humour, and a keen sense of the ludic- 
rous. The teeth are very large, white, regular, and 
prominent : even when the lips are shut they cannot 
be concealed. The head is set down closely upon the 
shoulders, as if the isthmus of a neck had been con- 
tracted by paralysis. His dress is plain, and fits him 
badly. At first sight he is far from being prepossess- 
ing ; but when he smiles, or speaks, the antipathy van- 
ishes. When he speaks, the words have no serrated 
edges, or burr about them ; they come forth *' fat, full, 
round and free." It has been said that the secret of 
his success lies in three things : ist, voice ; 2nd, the 
sublime ; 3rd, the ridiculous. It is not the whole 
truth, for many preachers in London command these 
three marks, and yet are not popular. Spurgeon pos- 
sesses, besides these, also, pungency ©f expression, cut- 
ting irony, and burning satire, and these, too, in a very 
few words, but they sear like a red hot iron. He was 
asked to preach against the homoepathic bonnets, then 

in fashion ; but, said he, "the savage who told me to 
do so, thought I could change the fa^shions : but, my . 
dears, 1 see no bonnets to preach against." They were 
then worn on tlic shculdcrs. No man could c0j)y him 
in the grotesque, without being himself the butt of ridi- 
cule ; and the solemnity with which he utters the most 
ridiculous things, gives no encouragement for the time 
being, to laughter or smiles. Spurgeon is like a; bee : 
lie will draw sweet illustrations from the most poison- 
ous sources. He will now and then cull them from 
the BUUngsgate of the fish market, from the slang of 
the fraternity, in the thief's kitchen, from the cabman's 
patois^ from the green-grocer in Haymarket, and from 
the nomenclature of the herbalist, the chemist,and the 
apothecary. These quaint illustrations are seldom 
published. Thus he catches the multitude by con- 
summate strategy. He does not hesitate to take for 
his text Uu Chaillu's " Gorrilla," if so be he can lure 
the people to hear him. He has before him notes of 
his sermons, which he fills up extempore as he preach- 
es ; and a reporter, generally, sits by his side, who 
writes down the words as they fall from his lips. His 
gestures arc few. Occasionally he will raise his right 
hand, and will toy with a white pocket handkerchief; 
but there are no violent contortions of the face or 
body. On Monday morning following his sermon can 
be bought printed for two pence. Nearly a million of 
them have been published, and some of them in the 
pagan tongues of Asia. Doubtless he will wear well, 
for there is too much originality in the composition of 
his mind, to be ever exhausted. No one can tell the 

14 J'K.>f r'HOrOCRAFHS. 

wonderful amount of good, such a man will do, until 
the sum total is reached ; and when the sun of Spur- 
geon sets in death, London will seldom " see his like 
again." Human wisdom says, what a pity that thus: — 

" Star after star declines. 
Till all have pass'd away." 

C L M M I N a . 

On ;i cold Sabbath atternoon, I was sauntering 
about the sl:irts of St. James' Park, on my way 
to Westminster Abbey — the mausoleum of IJritain's 
ilhistrious dcnd. I said to myself, " this is my last 
Sabbath in * old Kngland ; ' I will spend this day in 
meditations among the tombs. It will be ample food 
for reflection, in after years, when the days that are 
past, will roll before me, with all their deeds, as I stroll 
among the primal beauties of Canadian landscapes. A 
thought strikes me ; why not go and hear Dr. Gum- 
ming? Yes, let'the dead rot, and be forgotten, in the 
rock-built sepulchres of the old sanctuary : I will go 
and hear one of the living great. A few minutes 
sharp walking brought me to Crown Court, Covent 
Garden. In a street anent an arched gateway stands a 
row of carriages. On the panels of a few, are emblazon- 
ed the emblems of nobility. Postillions and footmen 
are lounging on the pavement. They had no need of 
ministrations, lor suc/iy 7vepresutne, have no soul^ To the 
wheels,hung bundles of rags, thepithofwhich wereafew 
anatomical structures called bones. These were covered 
with wrinkled skin, and were samples of the scum of 
I^ondon, or the gamins of Paris. To all appearance 
these had no souls either, if neglect, obscene language, 
aptitude for, and proficiency in, every species of wick- 
edness, and no seeming moral sentiment, are evidences 
of want of responsibility, and Christian charity. Much 


is being done by a tow d-jvotcd Christians for them ; 
but, so far, it is like checking the Atlantic tide with a 
broom. All honours, however, to the forlorn hope I 
As the shark follows the boundin,:; ship, so do these 
shivering atoms of unfortunate humanity cling to 
the chariot-wheels of nobles. They are watching for 
])rey. I entered a dirty court-yard and found myself 
ris-a-Tis with an ugly building, guarded by a stiff elder, 
with sufficient white linen about his neck to make a 
shirt for one of the dirty urchins outside. The interior 
of this square building was comfortably filled with 
pews, and I may add, with hearers, toe. It could lay 
no claim, within, or without, to architectural beauty or 
design. Dr. Gumming, when 1 entered, was "giving 
out " the psalm with great unction. His accentua- 
tion was good, and his voice a mellow falsetto. He 
is tall and gaunt, with considerable firmness about the 
lips, and a flash of conscious genius about the eye. 
He is a clever controversalist, and well acquainted 
with auglit appertaining to Romanism. His debate, 
of many days' duration with an eminent London 
lawyer, on Catholicism, at Hammersmith, is well 
known to the literary and theological worlds. He is a 
rabid mlllenarian. I heard him on his favourite sub- 
ject,and it plainly demonstra,ted to me, that there is a 
small spice of the monomaniac, or a good deal of 
craftiness in seeking popularity in the mental compo- 
sition of this intellectual giant. He insists on a literal 
interpretation of the Scriptures, when it suits his pet 
theories ; but he is not a severe hermeneutist when the 
existence of some creation of his brain is in jeopardy. 

CUM. MI NO. 17 

,f lis works roil well, both on a(:,:oii:it of the chaste 
stylo, l)eauty of e.\[)ro3sion, and elegance of diction, 
and also l)ecaiise of unusual vivacity of thouglit. His 
"(Ireat Tribulation " sold well, notwithstanding the 
pun hurled at it by tho **jolly" and obese Pmuli who 
mnounccd it as follows: "A new work, the (Ireat 
'i'ribulation, is Cinnmiih'^ upon the earth."' In the 
more recent works which have i:ome from his prolific 
l>en, he has modified and changed his views ; still, at 
the time, he insi:;ited that Scripture pointed to some 
great change in the moral, physical, and political sta- 
tus of the world. A.D. 1S67. That year was a focus 
towards which all other events centred. Punch 
slyly hinted that he had rented a house for twenty 
years — that is, ho would be a lessee, nearly ten years, 
after the " final consummation " of all things. Poor 
Cumming j)leads guilty ; but with lawyer-like craftiness 
says, that, by renting the house for twenty years, he ob- 
tained it much cheaper than if he had rented it for ten 
years ; thus, tiie transaction resolved itself into a mere 
bargain of prudence an. I economy. When 1 heard 
him, he contrived, by a series of comical deductions, 
to mix up the scenes of the millenium with hoop skirts 
and fashionable bonnets. His definition of a lady 
dressed, a la mode, was, that "she was the centre of a 
grand circumference ; " the dandy ^yas " the quintes- 
sence of fashionable frivolity." The supreme present, 
with its novelties, is mixed up in the phantasmagoria 
■of his brain, with the conditional, and absolute, of the 
future, and the unrecalled past. The last outre fashion, 
-or invention, from the infinitesimal bonnet, or the 


theory of perpetual motion, to the last patent churn- 
|), are all "signs of the year of jubilee." 
He is often so logical, and literal, in all his intcrjireta- 
tions of what is, and must remain, in time a mystery,. 
as to set all practical deductions at defiance. Had he 
the eloquence, earnestness, and devotednessof Kdward 
Irving, I have no doubt we would have a class of fan- 
atical reli,'/;ionists, called Cummingites, as well as Irv- 
ingites. He no doubt exercises considerable inlluence, 
for moral good, among the Scottish. Presbyterian 
noi)ility of London. Many of the elite of the northern 
aristocracy, are his ardent admircpi. He is intellectu- 
ally great, but not greatly useful, among the classes 
that need so much the counsel and advice of his kind. 
He is a quaint curiosity, whose theses may excite to 
curious and speculative eiKiiiiry as to the future of 
this world and race ; but when tiie abstractions of 
his powerful and erratic mind shall have ploughed 
their devious furrows over the sea of human thought, 
the bubbling waves may hiss, and foam, and sparkle, for 
a moment, from the momentum of the flashing thoughts. 
but soon oblivion shall bury them in the fathornless 
abyss of the past. The fleeting meteor is sending out 
coruscations, which "lead to bewilder and dazzle — tO' 
blind ;" but which will at last burst into fragments, 
from its own repellent elements, and leave the foolish 
midnightgazer, blinded wearied, and lost, amid the bogs 
of faithless uncertainty. We love the bold and fearless 
thinker, who follows no ignis fatuus, but, vv'hile the 
many shrink, from launching into the magnum mare 
of unexplored thought, will not fear obloquy, as he 



casts aside the Mi is of worthless invcstigraion, and 
pushes onward, without fear, and without reproach, 
into the new sphere of glorious intellection, conscious 
that there, to all humanity, 

"No pent up Uti<!a contracts his power; 
For the whole boundlef^s continent is ours." 



WE left Aberdeen far behind, and rushed with 
raih-oad speed up the Dee, and past many a 
'Cosy farmstead, and elegant country seat, to Aboyne, 
then by coach througli Kincardine O'Neil to Ballater. 
As we approached Ballater the mountains began to 
assume respectable proportions to a habitant, but to 
one who had climbed the Rocky mountains, and 
Andes, and the Swiss Alps, they were not such as 
would fill the mind of the traveller witli awe. They 
were so bald, and grey, and misty, that no great 
stretch of the imagination was reciuired; to conjure up 
the phantoms of Ossian's heroes doing battle in the 
clouds, or seeking fir-trees, and moons, for spears and 
shields, under the ghostly leadership of a Fingal. Yet^ 
we were on classic ground, and as we left the dreary 
Moor of Dinnet behind, and were pressing forward 
Into the mountain gorges near Lochnagar, we had on 
our left the meandering Dee — very pacific in its voice 
and in its motions — not thus far, and in warring Octo- 
ber *' the billows of Dee's rushing tide." On the far 
right, rose in graceful outlines, the smooth and round. 
ed hill of Morven. The name will suggest to the 
reader the graphic lines of Byron: 

"When I roved a young Highlander o'er the dark 

And climbed thy steep summit, O Morven, of s now 

To gaze on the torrent that thundered beneath; 

Or the mist of the tempest that gather'd below." 

Before us opens out the mountain home of the Dee, 

the river flowing in beautiful cascades, and murmuring 


ripples, from its mountain fastness. AVe gaze into this 
rugged retreat through the chasm in a rocky spur of 
the mountain, which cuts a large section of it away, 
as if a Hercules had in rage cleft it asunder with a 
huge claymore, shearing the top closely of its "haffets," 
but bearing round its venerable crown the green and 
stunted birch and the scraggy freeze bushes. To the 
south, rear up the bald peaks of Craigendaroch, (Gaelic 
for the rocky mountain of oaks) and away to the 
the north-west shoots up ColLleen. 

*' When I see some dark liill point its crest to the sky, 
I think of the rocks that o'ershadow Colbleen." 

Passing through this cleft in the rocks, and leav- 
ing the village ot Ballater on the left, we follow on 
the north side of the now "rushing Dee," the stage 
road, leading to Castleton of Braemar. Abergeldie 
Castle — once the summer retreat of Kent — can be 
seen on the south side of the river close to the edge of 
the water. At this point the river is spanned by a 
rope, and crossed in a rude cradle, which slides along 
the rope, on pulleys. The castle is small, but prides 
itself in towers, turrets and miniature battlements. 
Passing on about a mile, we come to a clump of trees 
composed of birch, ash, and fir, and scrubby oaks, 
embowered in which stands the Craithie parish church 
and near by is the school-house. The church lays no 
claim to architectural beauty, being only a plain, 
square, stone building, with a belfry on the top ■ of 
the east end, that seems to shelter birds' nests as well 
as a small bell, whose tones on Sabbath morning 
were none of the sweetest. In the inside it is equally 


plain, with the pulpit on the south .side, and octagon 
in shape; on the sides runs a narrow gallery from 
which are two passages leading, the one down into the 
lobby at the main door, and the other leads to a pri- 
vate door in the west side, used only by the 
Queen and her household. To the left-front of the 
preacher in the gallery, were the pews of the Royal 
Family;immediately in front were those of the Duchess 
of Kent, and those of the Executive that might be in 
Council with her Majesty. Every part from the pre- 
centors's desk upwards, is severely unadorned, old, and 
dilapidated. In the valley below, is the Manse, sur- 
rounded by several fertile fields, and near by a hand- ' 
some suspension bridge, leading to the village of 
Craithie, beyond which are dense fir woods, and the 
Lochnagar distillery, in which is manufactured "Loch- 
nagar whiskey," whose peculiar smoky flavour is obtain- 
ed by the use of spring water^ which percolates through 
a dense peat moss. About a mile farther on, as I 
turn a sharp angle of the road, Balmoral bursts upon 
my view rather suddenly. I'he royal banner flaunts 
its silken folds from the tower : the Queen was there. 
Was it possible that a Canadian back-woodsman was 
now gazing upon the palace of the mightiest monarch, 
that ever ruled since " the morning stars sang together," 
and was it possible, that my eyes were to behold Her 
whose name, and virtues, were honoured and revered, 
from "the rising to the setting sun ?' * I think, and 
gaze, and then gaze and think, until my soul is full 
of delight, and until I am sure it is not'a dream, and 
I have not lost my personal identity. The palace 

BAL^:ORAL. 23 

sils in the niidsts of a beautiful \-alley, wliose margin, 
^and sides, are covered Avitli luxuriant birch trees; 
.around it are the "everlasting hills," — the rugged, 
bare, grey crags of auMScotin, ''stern andwild." 'J'his 
valley is crescentic in shape. 'I'he river washes the 
base of the northern hiils. The castle is on the south 
side of the r-ver, but on the northern and convex side 
of the valley. Craig-an-govvan, from the south, juts 
out over the valley, somewhat like Arthur's seat, near 
P^dinburgh. On all sides are mountain tops to be 
seen, the one rising above the other in irregular suc- 
cession. The contour of the whole is absolutely deso- 
lation itself. Rocks and the dark heath everywhere. 
They looked like thrones for the Titans in the grand 
amphitheatre of judgment, from which they issued 
unchanging edicts, or hurled, like Jupiter, thunder-bolts 
of war. No wonder that mountaineers are brave, 
bold, and poetic, the world over, for their modes of 
thought must be a sort of transcript, of unyielding, 
majestic nature around them. About seven miles away, 
frowns that '''most sublime and picturesque of our 
Caledonia Alps," dark Lochnagar. It is only a section 
of a cone, for some convulsion of nature has rent it 
almost in twain from top to bottom. A perpendicular 
wall presents itself on one side for many hundreds of 
feet, and at its base is a dark lake, fit for a syren to 
sit by, and lure to destruction. It towers high above 
its fellow, rejoicing in the solitary grandeur. 
"Oh for the crags that are wild and majestic ! 
The steep frowning glories of dark Lochnagar !" 
The Farquharsons of Inverey, were the feudal pro- 


prietors of the Jialinoral estate. About the beginning 
of this century, the late Earl of Fife purchased it. 
The trustees of the estate leased the lands, and ap- 
purtenances, to Sir Robert Ciordon, tor the term of 
38 years. He built a shooting lodge on the present 
site of his palace. At his death, in 1847, the late 
Prince Consort purchased a transfer of the lease, and 
in 1852, bought the Ian Js for $t6o,ooo. The lodge 
was torn down in 1854 and the new palace built. It 
is unique in style, built in its principal features, after- 
the castellated mode of architecture, perhaps the ])ro- 
per term to use would be *' Baronial design." The 
finish on 't is modern. It is as if we had clothed an. 
uncouth, semi-civilized, athletic, and brave Gael, in 
the drapery of modern civilization. The oudine is 
pleasing, but the critic begins to dissect, and analyze, 
and compare, one part with another, the incongruity^ 
strikes the beholder very forcibly as Zifaitx pas in de- 
sign. Whoever the architect might be, it is evident 
he was endeavouring to serve two classes of masters ; 
one of the old school, and one of the new ; and 
shared the late of all such, by pleasing neither. The 
outline of an ancient fastness, and of the ethereal 
models of to-day, are so dissimilar that no combin- 
ation of the two, can loom beautifully on the eye, no 
such hybird can form a handsome creation. The 
palace is built in the shape of a quadrangle, minus 
the noth side, which is bounded by the Dee. The 
south-west, and south east angles, are composed of 
two large buildings. These are connected east, and 
west, by two wings extending from each cor- 

BA I.MORA [-. 25^ 

ner, in the south-east corner there is a 
tower 35 feet sc^uare and loo feet in height, sur- 
mounted by four smaller towers. On the south side 
the architecture is of the plainest kind, but on the 
west, and north sides, the carvings and mouldings are 
exceedingly rich', The stone was taken from a quarry 
on the estate, and is grey granite, capable of beautiful 
polish. It is smoothly dressed in ashler work, pre- 
senting no seams, and consecjuently the whole castle, 
at a distance, looks like a block of solid stone, unless 
closely inspected. The riband, rope and corbelling 
moulding are in keeping, to some extent, with the 
Baronial style of architecture. The main entrance, at 
the south-west angle, opens into a large room in which 
is a fire place, and a mantle-piece, on which stands a 
fancy clock. Around on the walls, are trophies of the 
chase, such as the antlers of the roe, and the cornuted 
heads of the red deer. From the hall runs a corridor 
at right angles to it, on each side of which are the 
dining-room, the library, the drawing-room, and the 
billard room. From this passage, ascends the grand 
stair-case to the first floor, on which are the private 
apartments of royalty. The rooms of the Queen, frontr 
ing the valley of the Dee, towards Braemar. From this 
point of observation, the scenery is of the wildest 
description, on all sides are the 

" Grisly rocks that guard 

The infant rills of Highland Dee." 

The bed-room is over the main porch and hall, from 
which a view south and west can be obtained far over 
the deer forests of Ballochbowie. To the east of 

26 PAN I'HOTOOr.Al'Hs". 

these rooms arc tiiose of t!ie children. Thousands 
of houses in Canada are furnished far more richly 
than this pretty retreat. The motto seems to be writ- 
ten on everything, " plain, useful, and substantial. " 
The carpets, the window curtain:,, and the upholstery 
of the chairs and sofas, in many of the rooms, are 
composed of clan tartan. When tb.ere are protuberan- 
ces, or ungainly angles, or salient points, on roof or 
v/alls, these are decorated with a carving of the Scottish 
thistle. The chairs, in tiie drawing room, are fur- 
nished with Victoria tartan of v/ool and silk. The 
dining room has drapery of roynl Stuart plaid. The 
wood-work of the furniture is an ash from Africa, being 
in appearance very much like bird's-eye maple. The 
curtains of the principal ])ed-rooms are of Victoria 
print. The chairs and tables of the dining-room of 
the Queen's retinue, and also those of the ball-room, 
are made of highly polished oak. The bed-rooms 
have furniture of American birch. To the rear of the 
west side is situated the ball-room, sixty-nine feet by 
twenty-six feet in area. A dais is erected for the Queen 
on the side next the main buildmg, and at the opposite 
end is an elevation for the musicians. The windows 
and wall are richly festooned by a material very much 
like damask, composed of wool and silk. Pure water 
is supplied by pipes from a mountain spring. Sur- 
ounding the palace are several small though beautiful 
terraces, and on the lawn are cultivated in irregular 
groups, flowers, mostly those indigenous to the coun- 
try, except the cactus, the fuschia, &c., that were grow- 
ing in large stone jars near the main entrance. 


The Queen is adored by the tenantry of Balmoral, 
and were it not that it would be a species of breach 
of trust, we mii^ht recite manv incidents of her Ma- 
jesty's visits to the cabins of the poor, (never publish- 
ed), as told by themselves, although with true Celtic 
reticence this people tell of her goodness, and kind- 
ness in a confidential way, as if they did not wish to 
be classified amon.n: the gossips of the neighborhood, 
or to be the media of, communication, to the outside 
world, of aught said or done, within the precincts of 
this rural retreat — the abode of happiness and peace,, 
far from cankering care, state troubles and political 
intrigue, for doubtless careworn is the brow, and 
weary is the head, that wears a crown. We often met 
Her, in her visits of mercy, and only attended by a 
single female attendant. It is said that the Aberdonian 
dialect puzzled Her Majesty not a little at first, but 
that she is now well read in Highland classics. We 
have no doubt, but the drilling any human tongue must 
have to pronounce the German accurately, would be 
sufficient to enable the Teutonic tongue to pronounce 
the guttural Gaelic names of some of the mountains, 
streams, and valleys around Balmoral. There is very 
little Celtic spoken, on these estates, but in the neigh- 
boring Straiths it is the mother tongue. 

It is enough to paralyze an English tongue to pro- 
nounce such names as Loch Muick, the Linn of Quoich, 
Ben-muich-dhue, Brae-riach, ike, yet all, like Hebrew 
words expressive of some local -circumstance, or ap- 
pearance, although it is not lo be inferred from this 
admission, that I wish to insinuate that Gaelic was 
the language of Eden. 

28 1'1:N rilOTOGRAlHS. 

The village of Craithie, when the Prince Consort 
bought the estate, was only a collection of miserable 
hamlets : not much better than the wigwams of the 
Indian. By "Albert, the good," these have been 
torn down, and neat substantial stone buildings erected 
in their stead. Here in this sequestered glen resides 
for weeks, and often months, our beloved Queen, and 
the remnant of her interesting family. What a retreat 
from the dii? of London and all the paraphernalia 
of Court etiquette ! To feel that she can roam and 
ride over hill and moor, by foaming cascade, and in 
sylvan scenes, sans pair d sans reproc/ie, 

" Where fairy haunted waters 
In music gush along; 
Where mountain rills are melody 
And heathy hills are song,'' 

must be the sweetest hours of a chequered life. 
No costly retinue — no bristling bayonets — no shotted 
cannon — no dragoon guards — and no consequential 
officials, are needed at Balmoral. Her trust in the 
faithful and loyal Highlanders is unbounded, and 
were one hair of her head touched by recreant assassin, 
there would be such a gathering of the clans, and such 
vengeance meted out to the infamous wretch, as was 
never heard of since the days of branded and murderous 
Cain. Every Briton feels that come weal, come woe 
— come victory, come disaster — come prosperity or ir- 
retrievable ruin — come revolution, or thrice blessed 
peace — come the halcyon days of our eventful history, 
or the fiery trials that test men's souls, this much is 

BALMORAl,. 2g 

as ccitainas the fixed laws that guide tlic universe of 
•God, that the rich and priceless heritage of freedom, 
which has been Ijcqueathed to us by a noble ancestry, 
is safe in the custody of Victoria ; and her loyal 
subjects who stand around her throne, as a sure de- 
fence, are pledged to hand down to generations yet 
unborn, the priceless legacy, or leave behnid them on 
the sands of time, such foot-prints, as were left at 
Thermopylae, wliere heroes died, not for themselves, 
-but in obedience to the laws of Sparta, for 
" Freedom's battle once begun. 
Bequeathed from bleeding sire to son, 
"rhoutrh baffled oft is ever won." 


TREi^l) lightly, for beneath your feet is the dust of 
heroes. Take up a handful of the earth, and ask 
yourself how much of it once formed the body of a 
veteran ; how many hearth-stones were made desolate 
— how man|r chairs vacant — how many athletic forms 
missing — how many cheery voices silent forever — how 
many dreams of glory and renown were followed by a 
dreadful awakening that knows no night ; and how 
great was the sum of misery to those who perished on 
the ensanguined plain, and to the bereaved fathers, 
mothers, widows, and orphans, of friends and foes ! 
Where are the ciphers of the sum total, and who must 
bear the dreadful responsibility ? How reverently do 
we approach a battle-field, where human blood has 
flowed in torrents, where disembodied spirits sped 
swiftly from the scene, and where " the bosom once 
heaved and forever was still." 

No struggle, in the history of the British nation, has 
excited such interest in Christendom as the battle of 
Waterloo. Two of the greatest generals of the age 
were face to face, for the first and last time, the one to 
lead a heterogeneous army of half the nationalities of 
Europe, (somewhat like William, Prince of Orange, at 
the battle of the Boyne,) to victory, and the other to 
lead a solid phalanx of " never conquered heroes," — 
the victors of a hundred battles — to hopeless defeat 
and inglorious death. Not to speak of the military 

rr.N j'HOToi.k.MAs. 31 

prestii:^e of each, the fate of Continental Kurope, and 
especially of La Belle I'Vance, was quivering 
in the balance on that eventful morn. O, the 
pageantry of the dawn ! when grey morning displayed 
** the thin red line " of Albion, the plaided and kilted 
chieftains, of the north, the Clerman legion, the IJruns- 
wickers, Belgians, Hollanders and Hanoverians, on the 
heights of Mont St. Jean ; and the chivalry of France 
— the *' invincibles" of Napoleon — in battle's mag- 
nificent array, on the gentle swellings of the farm of 
Waterloo. The neighing of ten thousand steeds, the 
strains of martial music, the waving of regimental ban- 
ners, the glitter of bristling bayonets, the sharp ring- 
ing words of command, as battalion after battalion, 
and scjuadron after squadron, fell into line, can 
never be forgotten by the surviving veterans of this 
immortal strife. A fine morning on the sixth of June, 
1S57, 1 paid a visit to the battle-field. Brussels, at 
this time, was in political commotion, and I was 
glad for a time to breathe the fresh country air, and at 
the same time satisfy our desire to see the spot where 
one of my kinsmen had fallen. Two young English- 
men ran a very comfortable stage from the city to the 
field, every morning during the summer months. Sergt. 
Mundy (since deceased), who fought with the 13th 
Lancers at the battle, was my guide. On the way 
young girls, the children of the cottagers, whose hum- 
ble dwellings stood thickly by the wayside, threw 
bouquets of wild flowers into the chaise, and in return 
begged for money. All the inhabitants of this beauti 
ful, and well cultivated country, arc particularly dis- 

3* WATiiRLOO. 

tinguislied by the fair hair and hhic eyes of t'nc KIcm 
ish race. As we approaclied Watedoo, to i\ui left, slill, 
stood a part of tlie forest of Soignies. The vvdods 
on the right have been cleared up ; but a few stumps 
slill remain, remindinj; one of a Canadian clearing. 
With what i)alpitating hearts did gay officers ride along 
this road before daylight, and debouch ujjon the field, 
manyof wliom were i):irtially dressed in bali-room attire, 
and fresh from the ball of the Duchefs nf Ricimiond at 
Brussels, where through the long night •' there was 
sound (;f revelry" ; till, in the midst of music and 
dancing, burst the spurred, and mud-covered courier, 
whispering to Wellington, with bated breath, " tiie foe! 
they come, they come!" Many of those present parted 
never to meet again, and "few [)arted where many met." 
To the front, coming almost, heretofore, resistless as 
an avalanche, was the hero of Marengo, Lodi and 
Austerlitz — the victor of Blucher, and expectant con- 
queror of Mrt/ " Iron Duke,'' who never lost a gun, 
and who hurled back from Spain and Portugal the tide 
of French invasion, before the heights of Torres V'edras. 
Little did the man of destiny think, on that June 
morning, that, ere the time of vespers, his marshalled 
hosts would be fleeing in wild dismay, a disordered 
rabble, along the Paris road, followed by the once 
vancjuished heroes of Prussia, and in frantic tones 
■crying out sain'e qui pent. The sun of Napoleon's 
glory set that day blood, never to rise again. 1 fel^ 
as I drew near the sacred spot — hallowed by a conse- 
crationof blood — that I was about to tread on holy 
ground. In boyhood I had heard the survivors 

F'KN Piioro<.RAi'Hs. 33 

of that day sing of " the immortal Wellington " in the 
wildest ecstasy. 1 had seen the one armed, or one 
legged veteran, tremble with excitement, as with flash- 
ing eyes, and dilated chest, he told of deeds of 
valour^ of hair-breadth escapes, and of the ebbing, and 
flowing fortunes of the day. When at school I had 
read of its glories, and its horrors, and trembled while 
I read, and now my fondest wish was to be realized, 
and I was about to view the Ciolgotha, and the 
Aceldama of heroes. 1 enter the field. It is covered 
with a luxuriant crop of barley, to my left, and, to the 
right, are oats and wheat. With a solitary e-xception, 
there are no hedges, nor stone walls, to obstruct the 
view. The grassy margins of the fields are covered 
with red poppies, as if mother earth refused, vol- 
untarily, to bring forth aught but appropriate symbols, 
from the ashes of the plain. Foot-paths intersect one 
another, over the country, and through the standing 
grain, evidently left thus for the accommodation of 
tourists. The farms of AVaterloo, Mont Jean, and 
La Belle Alliance, are composed of two ridges, of well 
cultivated land. A small ravine intervenes. When 
the two armies had taken their respective positions, the 
allies occupied the south western, and the French the 
north eastern swell of land. A small rivulet and a gentle 
depression of about six hundred yards in width, sepa- 
rated the combatants. The first object of interest 
which we noticed was the chateau de Hougoumont — 
the extreme right of Wellington's position — which had 
been taken and retaken several times during the day 



It is a sort of castellated farm-house, surrounded by a 
thick stone wall, about sixteen feet in height. There 
is a court yard inside, in the centre of which is a deep 
well, in and around which, the dead, and dying, friends 
and foes, were piled three and four deep. There was 
no outlet towards the British position, (a grave over- 
sight,) and the consequence was, that whoever con 
quered, for the time, put every one of their foes to 
death, whether Highlanders, Guards, or Chasseurs. 
Two heavy oak doors, facing the French, guard the 
entrance. The cannon-ball indentations are still to be 
seen on the walls ; and the gates are patched where 
these unwelcon'e visitors tore their way through into 
the enclosure. The gates were forced open at a criti- 
cal period of the battle ; but a strong Highland officer 
slew the front opponents, and shut them, in the faces 
of the astonished French soldiers. There being no 
ingress to the westward, reinforcements had to be 
pushed in at these gates, in the face of the enemy. 
This position had to be held at all hazards. The 
famous orcliard of Hougoumont lies to the north of 
the farm-house, and contains about four acres of 
ground. The fruit trees still bear traces of wounds 
and scars by cannon shot. The brick wall still sur- 
rounds the orchard, with loop-holes yet unfilled ; a^.d 
immediately above these embrasures bricks have been 
taken out, to allow room for the timbers of a tempor- 
ary scaffolding, upon which were placed sharp-shoot- 
ers, to fire over the wall, a la barbette. Great gaps are 
still in the walls, through which cannon balls had torn 


their way. Near the centre of the British position, on 
the spot where WelHngton stood, and where once a tree 
grew, has been erected a mound, over a hundred feet 
in height. It is sugar-loaf in shape, and composed ol 
earth, handsomely sodded over, and having stone steps 
from the base, to the truncated apex. On the summit, 
has been built a pedestal of solid masonry, about ten 
feet in height, which is surmounted by a lion of metal, 
said to have been made from the cannon of the discom 
I'ltedfoe. The lion overlooks the French position, and 
his right paw rests upon a globe. The whole is very 
suggestive of British power, and supremacy. From this 
elevation a panoramic view of the whole scene of con- 
flict is stretched before the eye. To the north, lies the 
Paris and Brussels turnpike : to the rear of Welling- 
ton's position, runs another road at right angles to the 
former, along which any weak point could be reinforced. 
There is a deep cut where these roads intersect, from 
which the Guards sprang, when the Duke gave the 
welcome command, " Guards, up, and at them !" and 
so graphically described by Victor Hugo in " Les 
Miserables " as the scene of plunder, and murder, by 
Thenardier on the eve of the battle. Two other mon- 
uments are the only ones on the field, both near the 
Paris road : the one erected by the mother and sister 
of aide-de-camp Gordon, sent to urge on Blucher, but 
who was killed on this spot without fulfilling his mis- 
sion ; and the other was erected by Germany, in 
memory of the German legion, that was almost anni- 
hilated near where this colossal stone memento stands. 


The field of conflict extended about two miles ; and 
far beyond it can yet be seen an opening in the forest- 
through which theI3uke cast longing eyes. Theday Avas 
waning, and his troops were fast melting away. All 
day he had stood on the defensive, waiting for help. 
Dozens of times had his troops to form squares, to resist 
cavaliy ; dozens of times had artil ^ /-men to seek shel- 
ter in these phalanges, and leave th. 1 guns for a time 
among the French. Times without number had the 
Cuirassiers rode up to the serried lines endeavouring to 
force an entrance, but all in vain. Yet were the lines 
becoming fearfully thin. The gallant 42nd was almost 
torn to pieces, and was once entirely surrounded, 
until the Greys, coming to the rescue, and shouting 
"Scotland for ever," trampled into the dust the enemy, 
and saved a remnant of them. The Colonel asked 
from Wellington a tempo"iry respite, but the char- 
acteristic reply was, " I, and you, and every man must 
stand our ground." The brave Colonel said, " Enough 
my lord," and rode to the head of his devoted band, 
who often after this did prodigies of valour. All had 
wrought wonders, and all had shown Saxon, and Teu- 
tonic stubbornness, so as to extort from Bonaparte the 
remark that "he had beaten the British often that day, 
but they did 7iot know it. ^^ The sun was setting, and 
Napoleon was wondering what had become of Grouchy, 
and Wellington was straining his eyes in the hope of 
seeing the Prussian banners. At last the French 
reserves are ordered to the front. The Imperial Guard 
that never surrendered, are formed into two immense 


columns for the final attav^r.. They aie told that all 
depends upon them, and with the shouts of vive I 
Empereur, they are led by Napoleon down the slopes, 
and are hurled impetuously into the bowels of a vol- 

" Cannon to right of them, 
Cannon to left of them, 
, Cannon in front of them, 

Volley'd and thunder-^-'. ;" 

but as frost-work disappears before the April sun, so 
did those brave men dissolve, from the ranks, in this 
harvest of death. On all sides they were harassed, yet, 
often reforming, they returned to the charge led by the 
gallant Ney, and the dauntless Rielle ; but as the ocean 
waves dash impotently against the giant rocks, so did 
this magnificent legion storm in hellish rage, in front 
of those to whom was entrusted the honour of old Eng- 
land. Jerome Bonaparte, who led six thousand men 
against Hougoumont, and left 1,400 of them in the or- 
chard, was ordered to come to the rescue of the Guards, 
but before his column was put in motion, the cry was 
hear^from all parts of the field, "The Ciuards recoil," 
and simultaneously, with this paralyzing cry, came the 
news that Blucher was at hand. During tins eventful 
hour the British commander had his heart wrung by 
the fearful slaughter, and no succour at hand. Night 
would be a boon to his wearied army. ".Would God it 
were night or Blucher," he said to the remnant of his 
staff. The words were scarcely uttered ere the booming 
•of cannon reverberated over the forest ofSoignies, tell" 


ing of succour or defeat. Both embattled hosts heard 
it. The strife ceased for a moment, for the decisive 
hour had come. Far to the left could be heard the 
multitudinous voices of men, and piercing the smoke 
of battle, came British cheers. Division after division 
took up the gladsome shout. The Prussians were 
rushing to the rescue, and Waterloo was won. " It 
was a famous victory." A fugitive Emperor was terror- 
stricken on the way to Paris, while behind him, on the 
gory plain, were the Imperial Guards, with tens of thou- 
sands of their companions in arms, stark corpses, or 
mutilated masses of quivering and living flesh, on the 
ensanguined plain. As we stood on the tumulus, the 
whole scene seemed to be enacted over again, and the 
ghostly legions of armed men came up before our 
mind's eye as if it were yesterday, and the muffled tread 
of spectral squadrons could almost still be heard 
where " the angel of death spread his wings on the 

Had Bonaparte conquered, Europe would have been 
under the heel of a military despot, partitioned, to 
some extent, it had been already, to his relatives and 
friends, with himself, the Emperor autocrat of Cfirist- 
endom. This was his day-dream, and the goal of his 
ambition, until his right arm hung nerveless by his side 
at Waterloo. England was victorious, and the enthrall- 
ed nations of Europe were set free. Let panegyrists 
of the Abbott school exalt the Corsican to the rank of a 
military demigod; but to us,standing on this battle-field; 
his character stood forth as a heartless, bloody, and 

PEN PnOT(iRArHS. 39 

ambitious adventurer, whose inmost nature was filled 
with the " Napoleonic" idea of vain and empty mili- 
tary glory. He filled France with a mania for con- 
quest. Every victory fed the morbid appetite to 
Satiety for a time, but, only in a short period, to seek 
again more bloody sacrifices to fill its omnivorous 
man. Every defeat like that of Moscow, only woun- 
ded the Gallic Pride, and stimulated it to seek other- 
and various fields of conquest, until at last, the elas- 
tic heart of evei> the French people was crushed al- 
most to extinction. The descendants* of Poictiers, 
Cressy, and Agincourt, were styled the sons of " per- 
fidious Albion," and vengeance was on Frencli lips 
and rancour in the heart at Waterloo. Napoleon III, 
in his "Life of Caisar" styles Csesar, Charlemagne, and 
Napoleon I, the only three guiding stars of history 
yet in following the example of this triumverate, he 
lost his all at Sedan. To fight for freedom is glorious ;. 
but how often do nations draw the sword wantonly^ 
through a pure love of conquest ; then 

'' O war what art thou ? • 

After the brightest conquests, what remains. 
Of allthe glories? For the vanquished chains, 
But for the proud victor — what .'* 


MRS, Hemans, in the critique on the "Tasso" of 
Goethe, says truthtully that "some masterminds, 
indeed, winged their way through the tumult of crowded 
hfe, like the sea-bird cleaving the storm, from which its 
pinions come forth unstained ; but there needs a cel- 
estial panoply, with which few indeed are gifted, to 
bear the heirs of genius, not only unwounded but un- 
soiled, through the batde and too frequently the result 
of the poet's lingering afar from his better home has 
been mental and moral degradation and untimely 
death." This sentiment is applicable to tlie unfortu- 
nate subject of this sketch. William Knight, of Keith 
was a shoemaker by trade. He was the illegitimate 
son of a "laird" in Baniffshire. His mother, a servant 
of his father, was ruthlessly turned away from his fa- 
ther's door, with AV'illie in her arms, to battle with life, 
as best slic could, for the long gaunt finger of scorn 
had been pointed at her. Willie had received a good 
training at the parish school, thanks to his mothers 
frugality and industry, who had a strong attach- 
ment to the son of her shame. His progress, for 
his age, was very rapid. He greedily devoured 
every literary and scientific work, Avhich came in his 
way. He was familiar with such classic works as 
Virgil, Horace, Xenophon, and Homer. Resolved 
to still further improve his mind, he trudged on foot — 
carrying a small bundle, containing his all on his back 


— all the way to St. Andrew's University, and atten- 
ded two winter sessions, in the meantime carrying oft 
several prizes, and the chief bursary for Latin. He 
then returned to his mother at Aberdeen, hired an 
attic at the farthest end of Love Lane, and became a 
copyist in a lawyer's office : still pursuing his studies 
and writing poetry, for which his love was intense 
Herein was genius. He could recite from memory, 
stanza after stanza, in the original, of the Illiad, and 
me odes of Horace. He was familiar with all the 
Scoitish poets from " Blind Harry" to ]3urns and 
Scott ; and all the English poets, from the days of 
Chaucer to those of Tennyson. But his genial spirit, 
conversational powers, and conviviality led him into 
intemperate habits, and so besotted did he become, 
that as an intermittently drivelling idiot, he was shun- 
ned by his boon companions, and driven by starvation 
to seek employment as an apprentice shoemaker. 
Necessity forced him to occasional sobriety, and then 
his feelings of remorse were most poignant. He would 
shed tears of bitter repentance, and vow reform, 
but only to sin again, when money came in his way. 
His experience was that of many unfortunate sons of 
genius who are caught in the snare of the fell destroyer. 
His aptitude to learn soon enabled him to earn a liv- 
ing by his trade, but in the meantime hismother died, 
and from that day, he lost all self-respect, and strayed 
like a wandering Arab, from place to place, until his 
constitution gave way, from exposure to the storms of 
winter and summer. He would beg from door to door, 


and be only too glad to seek shelter by the side of a 
hay-stack, in theleeside of a hedge, or on the hard floor 
of a friendly " bothy." Nature at last could hold out 
no longer, and he was conveyed into one of the wards 
of the Dundee Infirmary, in the month of June i86;. 
Here in a dark come* he suffered severely, with no 
tender hand to smooth his pillow, and close his eyes, 
as he passed into the land of spirits. During the last 
hours of his earthly existence, he occasionally would 
utter snatches of poetry, and sometimes give expression 
to words of penitence, and remorse, so heart-rending 
as to bring tears to the eyes of his fellow surferers ; 
but at last incoherent sentences feebly expressed that 
the sands of life were fast running out, and as the steel 
grey dawn appeared, as the harbinger of approaching 
day, he took his everlasting flight away from what had 
been to him truly "a vale of tears." His poems are 
in plot, style, and beauty of execution, not inferior to 
any Scotch poetry, we have had the pleasure to 
read ; not even excepting that of Burns. One of them, 
"Twanichtsat Yule," will compare favourably with 
" Tam O'Shanter." Notwithstanding the rugged road 
he had travelled, and the coldness and ill usage he re- 
ceived from the world, he maintained his geniality to 
the end, and showed a heart welling over with the 
sweetness of a soul-flooded kindness, which no acidity 
could sour. How many of such men have flashed 
athwart the shining firmament of literature — effulgent 
and beautiful — but whose brightness has never been 
photographed, by some kindly pen dippedinto the sun- 


shine of immortality ! What a pity it is that some one 
competent for the task does not collect and publish in 
the more durable form of a book, all such waifs of 
poetry which float on the sea of newspaper, and maga- 
zine literature, and which would thus be a precious 
souvenir of many a true nobleman, whose sterling 
thoughts are now, or will be, lost in oblivion. Some 
of Knight's songs should never die, and as very few 
have ever seen the following, we insert them in this 
work as specimens of his style. The writer of this 
sketch hopes that the reader will notice particularly the 
master touches of tenderness in " Via Vitai." Does 
the exquisite and justly popular ballad of " John 
Anderson my Joe" excel it ? It was the last song 
Willie ever wrote. It has a ring of true metal in its 
composition. The " more unfortunate" son of genius, 
in h\s Journey of life f often " stauchered into holes' 
and " lownered deep in glaur," but in charity we hope 
that he has now " sunny glints" of " mony a gowden 
scene." These extracts will show how much he knew 
of the evils of intemperance, and how, in his sober 
moments, he detested the cause of his ruin, and un- 
told misery : 

My cronies, we've sitten owre lang at the yill. 
The nicht's weerin' late, and the niune's in the hill, 
And our ain folks at hame will be thinkin* fu' lang, 
That we're no comin' to them — let's taddle alang. 

, Yestreen I was dreamin' that Peggy and I 
Cam' in by the loanin frae milkin the kye ; 

44 I'l'-N ph(jt<)(;rai>ks. 

I thouj^lu that she, as she lookit at luc, 
Wi' a face fu' o' sadness richt wearisome to sec— 

" Oh I Johnny," said she, and her voice sounded 

Like the wind's hollow moan in the fa' o' t'.ie year 
" When ye bide frae hame we've a sair lot to dree— 
There's a wraith that iskillin your bairnies and me. 

" It rugs at my heart as 'twad rive it in twa, 
It llcgs me wi gruesomc-1'ke shapes on the wa' — 
It tooms cot their parritch, it rives a' their claes 
They darna e'en budge for't sic cantrips it plays. 

I thought that I grippit my mucklc aik rung 
To gird at the goblin, and forrit I sprung — 
My bluid boilin' thro' me, to win to my hame - 
When I waukcned and told to my Teggy my dream. 


*' Its nac dream," said she, " for there's mair 

wraiths than anc 
That glamp through the house, and rampage but 

and ben ; , 
While ye're sittin drinkin', out-bye late and air, 
They're nogrowin' fewer, but aye growin mair." 

" Grim hunger glowers 'oot at the edge o' the press, 
Andnakeducss glints, thro' our thread-bare distress ; 
Dour grief wounds the heart, sair, and fear strangles 

And Pourtith has threatened the fireside to keep." 

Na mair sp:d my Peggy, but drappit a tear, 

And I've made her a promise, I'll keep ever dear, 
That henceforth I'll hame, and drink na yill ava, 

But lounder the wraiths oot, and keep them awa." 




O weary fa', that wacfu' drink, 

O'er a' the ills we hae, 

Jt mak's us scarce o' clacs and chink, 

And steeps the saul in wae ; 

It dings the elbows ootour coats, 

And clours our heids fell sair ; 

It turns the brightest chicis to sots. 

And dottles wit and Icar. 

But warst ava, out ow'er our eon, 
It draps its glamour screen— 
We dinna see how crined and sma' 
We're in the warld's gleg e'en. 
The angel lace of youth it blurs, 
Gaes stalwart manhood shak ; 
Sends Eild a-hirplin thro, the dubs, 
Wi' death upon his back. 

It beets the icy norland win', 

That drives wi' keenest birr, 

Maks holes, and bores to let him in. 

And CO sy riggins stir. 

Puts out the fire upon the hearth, 

Ca's wives, and weans a-jee ; 

Gars lairds, as beggars trudge the earth, 

And dings the warld aglee. 

PKN I'H(310»;RAPIIS. 46 


Link yc to mc my auld gude man, 
And dinna hiirryin;,' g^^ng- 
Ye're nae doot tired as wed a-» I, 
But we'll win hamc ere lang. 

The snaws of cild arc on our pows, 
And hard we find the grun'. 
But vvc are in the lithe, gudc man, 
And carena, for the wun'. 

'Twas morn, gudc wife, when we set out, 
Baith laughin' brisk and gay ; 
Sometimes we ran, sometimes we gaed ; 
Whiles dackled on the way. 

Our limbs are nae sae souple now. 
We e'en maun creep's we may 
We've louped mony a burn, gude wife, 
And breistit mony a brae. 

And strappin' lads I wat, gude man, 
And mony a sonsy quean, 
We've left upon the road behind, 
And never mair hae seen. 

For some hae wandered aff the way, , 
And gane they kentna where ; 
And some have stachered into holes, 
Or ta'en to bogs to lair. 

Like mony mair were we, gude wife, 

We didna' hain our strength. 

But caed the road from side to side,^ ; 

Nor countit on its length ; 


Fell tired [ grew 'gin uftcinooti, 
Wi' yon lon„r dreary Iiowc. 
And thankfu' w.i3 I when I 
The sma'est wee bit knowc. 

Troth, lang has been the road, j,nide man, 
Sair niddered have we been ; 
But we've had sunny glints I wat,— 
Viewed mony a gowden scene. 

And though we've had out share o' wcel, 
And lowndered deep in glaur, 
We've seen as foul feet as our ain— 
And scores a hantle waur. 

Aweel, my ain gude wife, this road, 
Had it no been for you — 
Whase hopefu' word aye cezed my heart— 
I ne'er had warstled thro'. 

But now we'er near our journey's end, 
The nicht begins to fa', 
The starns are gathcrin' in the lift -- 
We'se ithly stoit awa'. 

Link close to me, my ain gude man ; 
I whiles might tak' the gee, 
And fash ye wi'my tantrum trips, 
But only for a wee, 

Now that's a' owre, and we'll jog on 
The gither a' the same, 
And lang afore the dawn o' day 
We'll baith get rest at hame. 



C CHILDHOOD and Credulity go hand in hand. 
^ There ^3 no ogre so hideous that children will 
not believe in as a reality, and no fairy so spectral, 
whether dancingto sweet music in the moon beams, on 
some grassy hillock, or playing fantastic tricks on hu- 
manity, or gathered in joyous groups around Queen 
Mab, to plot new raids, and celebrate recent exploits 
and triumphs — that juveniles will not acknowledge 
within the sphere of their magic circle. The monstros- 
ites, and extravaganza of the imagination of some 
kindly intended soul have been given to the youth 
of all countries to amuse, terrify or to instruct, and 
to such they are for the time being, positive and 
tangible entities. Mother Hubbard and her intelli- 
gent dog, which canine-like had no objection to pick 
a bone — Whittington and his precocious Cat — Jack 
the Giant Killer, and the luxuriant Bean Stalk, — Blue 
Beard, the worst of Mormons, and the wonderful do- 
ings of the heroes of Hans Anderson, are even yet the 
staple commodities, and material for building up inci- 
pient hrainhood. Too often are put into the hands of 
youth, fearful accounts of ghosts, hobgoblins, "dead 
candles," witches, and " banshees," until every hil- 
lock, or stump, becomes at the gloamins; a supernatural 
object, and the screech of the night owl, or the wail 
of the wind, or the grating sound of swaying and 
rusty hinges of some way-side gate, are supposed to 


be the wail of some lost spirit asking for sympathy 
or seeking relief. At one time or another we were all 
firm believers in the exploits of those heroes of antiq- 
uity, or in the existence of those weird-like beings 
who haunt persistently the scenes where murder had 
been committed, or hover reluctantly near the cities 
of the dead ; we have heard them spoken of as reali- 
ties by those in whose judgment and veracity we had 
implicit confidence. Our venerable granny, or hoary- 
headed grand-father, has often gathered us around 
the roaring winter fire, and in graphic, earnest, and 
awe-inspiring words, recited experiences, and sights, on 
land, and by sea, and flood, of those beings, which seem- 
ed to have a mission to frighten youngsters, and the 
subjects of superstition. I remember sitting hour after 
hour listening to these witch, fairy, and ghost stories, 
until my hair felt as if growing erect on the top of my 
head, and the chirp of a cricket, or the squeal of a 
mouse, or the howl of the wind as it whirled round the 
house, or the chimney top, would cause a shrinking and 
creeping sensation more potent than pleasant. As rea- 
son begins to open its eyelids, and looks around, it 
sees much to believe in, but begins to doubt. It is 
not sufficiently sceptical to reject all, and therefore 
budding manhood and womanhood greedily devour 
such works as "The Arabian Nights," the wonders 
recorded by " Baron Munchausen," " Robinson Cru- 
soe" and his irrepressible man Friday, " Don Quixote" 
and genial and credulous Sancho Panza. But it is 
not long before the realities of life shake us into 
absolute infidelity. We perceive the mythical nature of 



our fireside friends, and cast them aside as the worth- 
Jess debris of past investigation, and faith. At this 
stage of mental development the mind is omnivorous. 
It virtually cries '* I have no faith In the past, give me 
a reahty or I die." The hungry prodigal begins to 
eat husks, for they are plentiful, and present more in- 
viting forms for the intellectual gourmand. One hun- 
dred-paged novels, lascivious song books, prurient 
medical works *' sent free of charge ;" and pretentious 
books of history, and biography, which covertly pro- 
pagate foulest dogmas on social evils, and dubious 
ethics, and without you " whited sepulchres," filling to 
plethora, the rapidly expanding, and absorbing, and di- 
gesting, human mind, until it ruminates and feels all the 
horrors ot mental dyspepsia. The well wishers of the 
•world have seen this, and have endeavoured to create 
a desire for more healthy pabulum. The Chambers' of 
Edinburgh stand first among philanthrophists in this 
field of labour. Their books, and periodicals, are inval- 
uable to the young student, who wishes wholesome in- 
formation, on the all absorbing topics of the day. In 
our Index Expurgatarius of their works, we enter one 
book, as unworthy of a place in the valuable list. We 
refer to " The Vestiges of Creation" the arguments of 
which have been demolished by the geological wand of 
Hugh Miller. In the United States the people owe 
much in the popular walks of science, to Carter & 
Brother, Harper & Brother, and many such like. 
These, however, except the last mentioned firm, were 
simply publishers and laid no claim to being writers 
and compilers as the Chambers were. But as a Saul, 


head and shoulders above his fellows, in the field of 
popular, useful, scientific, and christian literature, we 
place foremost in the list, the name of Thomas Dick. 
He saw that there were hiati between theological 
works, the abstractions of philosophy, and the facts 
of science. At the beginning of this centur)--, there was 
a tendency among the master minds of the day to in- 
dulge in abstractions, with regard to everything which 
required the exercise of thought, whethc sacred, or 
secular. Science, at the first time Dick attempted to 
write, revelled in bare axioms, deductions, and " con- 
fusion worse confounded." He was among the first 
to popularize science, and elucidate and illuminate 
Divine procedure, by that glorious lamp which shows 
how coincident, and harmonious, are all God's works, 
whether in nature or revelation. God's truth, and 
these two sources of knowledge, and wisdom, are one 
and indivisible. We often hear that truth needs sup- 
porting, but the converse is true, for truth is our bul- 
wark, and when truly read is its own interpreter. 
Dick took modern science by the right hand, and in 
troduced the stately dame to her colleague, beautiful 
Revelation. So anxious was he to do this, as some- 
times to become prolix, but never wearisome. His ar- 
dour in this direction is sometimes so intense, as to 
drive him to the verge of curious speculation, and hy- 
pothesis. In his eyes war under all circumstances, is 
legalized murder. He is in fact a Quaker in this parti- 
cular, and does not seem to recognize the moral right 
of self defence, and that the same obligation which is 
binding on us to defend our persons from assault, 


or our houses from the depredations of burglars, is also 
binding on communities, and nations as regards a for- 
eign foe. We visited him, a few months before his 
death, at Broughty Ferry, a small town, a few miles 
seaward, from Dundee, Scotland. The house was 
a story and a half in height, nearly square with a piaz- 
za, partly around it. In front of it, is the shingled 
beach where the sea and the river Tay meet, west- 
ward could be seen smoky Dundee, and a conical 
hill of about 400 feet in height, towering behind it. 
Over the broad River, lay in domestic serenity, and 
beauty, eastern Fifeshire, and at the furthest range of 
vision, on a clear day, could be seen the Towers of St. 
Andrews. Behind the house a hill rises somewhat ab- 
ruptly, and obscures the view in that direction. We 
found the philosopher immersed in his studies. He 
was of medium height and spare in body. His hair 
was white, and the forehead broad, but not very high. 
The eyes were grey, and the nose large and aquiline. 
His voice was soft, and of that persuasive tone, that 
takes the heart by storm. His hand shook consider- 
ably — not from that nervousness which afflicts some 
people in the presence of strangers — but from the mus- 
cular weakness, which inexorable time carries in his 
train. It was ev'ident, to an observant eye, that his 
days were short, although he put on a great deal of 
cheerfulness, and became quite loquacious after we 
received a formal introduction through a mutual friend. 
He took us with him to inspect his observatory on the 
top of the house. It was erected on a flat roof, with 
two sliding windows facing respectively north, and 


south. There was a telescope of medium size placed 
opposite each window, which included in their range 
the whole celestial hemisphere, except what was 
hidden by the hill in the rear of the house. On fine 
starlit nights, he often made the top of this hill his 
tower of observation. A sort of stone parapet sur- 
mounted the top of the walls of the house. I remarked, 
in a jocular tone, that he could mount barbette guns 
on this minature fort, that might command the River 
Tay. His face instantly assumed an expression of pain, 
and he said with deep emotion, ** my soul loathes war* 
and my inmost nature sickens at the mere mention of 
aught pertaining to the dread machinery of modern 
warfare." His finer feelings had the mastery, and 
through all his writings there stand out prominently, 
benevolence, affection, and love. His works are like 
household words, well known by all classes of society, 
and are a standard not only on both sides of the At- 
lantic, but also throughout Christendom, and it afford- 
ed him great pleasure, to hear, that his writings were 
greatfully appreciated and read, not only in the man- 
sions but also in the log cabins of Canada. He said 
that the finest editions of his works were those pub- 
lished in the United States, and specimen copies of 
which had been sent to him by his American friends. 
He showed me two superb copies. The British Govern- 
ment was petitioned to grant him an annuity, and it 
actually gave him ten pounds annually, out of its abun- 
dance. Had he been the son of somebody^ who had 
served his country, and had been " born with a silver 
spoon in his mouth instead of a wooden ladle " — as 


some quaint writer says, — I have no doubt his annuity- 
would have been thousands of pounds, instead of tens 
of pounds. He did more honour, and granted a more 
lasting legacy of good to his country, than even those 
medalled warriors — to whom all honor should be given, 
— who receive large bonuses for doing their duty, and 
whose largesses extends to remotest generations, but he 
had no aristocratic friends to plead his cause, and no 
escutcheon, save that of an unsullied reputation. The 
publisher of his works fleeced him, and his country's 
legislators ''knew him not." During the summer months, 
he rented one half of his small house to lodgers, that 
he might have food, and in the winter months, as his 
health permitted, he took up his pen and wrote for the 
religious press almost until his earthly day had closed 
for erer, but the sun of his deathless fame shall shine 
with unclouded splendour co-equal with our history. 
Penury was the lot of both himself, and his partner, and 
the voluntary contributions of his admirers, and friends, 
kept famine away from the door. How often is the 
same story, the history of genius ! Had he been a de- 
bauchee, like erratic and gifted Byron, or a drunkard 
like immortal Burns, or a spendthrift like Goldsmith, 
then could we not complain if the world did forget ; 
biA of sterling piety — of famous talents — unobtrusive 
in manners, and toiling as a galley slave for the public 
weal, in inciting far and near love of mature, its laws and 
its Infinite Author, who could have reproached " the 
old man eloquent," if he had died a misanthropist ? 
We asked him if he did not think himself neglected by 
the world. His answer was " I am thankful for all 


mercies ; I receive all I deserve." The star of true 
nobility shone in his breast, planted there by no earthly 
monarch ; and now he is gazing with unclouded vision 
on the glories he loved to portray. His writings will 
have lasting renown, not because of great profundity 
of thought, but because of chasteness of style, elegance 
of diction, and endeavours to convey useful knowledge 
to all minds in such a way, as will lead the reader to 
contemplate the Fountain of all wisdom in his works. 
What a contrast do the productions of his pen present 
to those prurient, and sensational works, of even clever 
writers, who write immediately for gain, and who are 
not conductors, but mirrors of public opinion ! Such as 
the former, are benefactors and the latter, a " delusion 
and a snare." Those leave us a priceless legacy — and 
these a fatal moral miasma, which engenders a disease 
worse than death. The canker worm of this day is that 
which feeds on these hot-house plants of ideality, de- 
generated into exaggerated fiction, which is eating 
away at the heart of pure literature and morality. All 
honour to those who are stemming the tide. 


ONE of the wonders of nature is, that of all the 
forms of the material world, whether the grains 
of sand on the sea shore, — the crystals of minerals, — 
the blades of grass, — the drops of dew, — the leaves of 
the forest, and stranger still, the multitudinous faces of 
humanity, no two are precisely alike. The same can 
be said of men's temperaments. Some are so phlegmatic 
that a bombshell might burst at their ears, and yet 
they would scarcely wink. Others are almost examples 
of perpetual motion. They are on the move constantly. 
To be still would be fatal to their longevity. Some are 
on the move intermittently. Their actions are spas- 
modic. They are all fuss, and fury to-day, and all 
inertia to-morrow. At one time you would think them 
the lever, which moves the world of society, and at 
another they are so bluggish that spiders could almost 
make cobwebs between them and their work. The 
machine is good in its component parts, but it lacks a 
balance-wheel to regulate the power, and moderate the 
jerkiness. Others are slow, regular, and sure. They 
have a certain jog-trot out of which the crash of the 
universe, and the general mixing up of all things, could 
not spur them lorward or backward. All these are 
representative men, and seen every day in the walks of 
life. There is the same dissimilarity in mind. Many 
are planning, but never executing. Some are born to 
execute what others devise. Many draw conclusions 
rapidly from fallacious premises, and are thus constantly 

ruNsHoN. 57- 

in trouble through ill-devised s<-hemes, or ])y being the 
dupes of cunning cupidity, or of their short-sightedness. 
Some sec glory, and renown, in the merest delusions, 
and follow the glimmering of every \vill-o'-thi.--wisp, 
which blinks over treacherous bogs, and through the 
murky darkness. Many love reflection, not only on 
the stories of memorial incidents, but, also, on the rich 
fields of imagination, or in abstraction, and the phenom- 
ena of the mind, chew the cud of sweet content. Others 
revel in the beauties of external nature. They live in 
the world of sensation, and perception, 'j'hey see love- 
liness in every dew-drop, and the meandering and singing 
rivulet — in the humming-bird drinking ambrosia from 
every opening flower, and in every lark, with bui ..Led 
wings, singing its matin song over the fiowery lea ; — in 
every insect which builds its cozy '* biggin " constructs 
its battlements, parapets, minarets, halls and thorough- 
fares, on the sunny side of some miniature hillock, or in 
the folds of a tropical jjlant — in every diamond which 
sparkles on the brow of beauty, and in every planet 
which adorns the face of night, resplendent in glory, 
and marching in starry paths to " the music of the 
spheres," — in the outlines of animal, and vegetable life, 
fossilized in the petrified sands of time, and in the living 
form and face divine of humanity ; and hear not only 
music in the choristers of the grove, but also in the 
glorious strains of anthems, and oratorios, and chants, 
and hymnal m.elodies. These see with ecstasy the paint- 
er's cunning on the canvass, or the sculptor's genius on 
the block of marble. They live, they do not vegetate. 
They read the book of nature, startling, voluminous,. 


and beatific in every page, with quickening pulse, bcam- 
ming eye, and gladdcn'^d heart. The more perfect man 
is he, who grasps in intellection both the subjective, and 
objective, — the substantive in soul, and tlie material in 
external nature, and who travels in wonder, and delight* 
subdued and sanctified, through tlie labyrinths of na- 
ture's great metropolis. Many have minds so consti- 
tuted as to be incapable to analyze subjects of thought. 
They never use the scalpel, to probe and cut into mys- 
tery. They fear to 'Iraw aside the veil, which hides the 
known from the unknown. They climb the tree of 
knowledge, as tar as others have climbed it, and they 
only scan the landscape, which others had explored 
before them. They push their shallops from the shore, 
and follow in the wake of more daring explorers. They 
step upon the continent of partially explored human 
thought, but they have no inspiration, to them there is 
" a pent up Utica :" but the ardent lover after truth, — 
the impetuous adventurer in quest of unknown regions 
— the fiery soldier on the advanced skirmish-line of 
those who do, and dare, and die, in the battles of 
science, and truth, knows no fear, and is never dis- 
couraged by disaster. What a theme is that of human- 
ity I What a strange creation is man ! 

" Ah ! what a motly multitude, 
Magnanimous and mean." 

From this it might be inferred that different minds 
looking upon nature, would naturally, by their idiosyn- 
crasies, have multifarious ways in communicating their 
thoughts to others, by words, and gesture, and expres- 
sion. The voluble tongue, or the ready pen, in every 


accent, and in every word, photographs the orator, or 
the litterateur. These are the exuvup, which show tl\e 
outlines of the modes of thought. Many writers and 
speakers deUght in giving expressions to bare facts, and 
abstract tliought, witliout adornment. Metaphor, simile^ 
and rich imagery, are to such " love's labor lost." Such 
appeal only to the intellectual in our being. The most 
powerful writer, or speaker, is he who plays skilfully 
on the strings of the harp of our nature. 

The word picturing has a response in the soul, as 
well as the severe logic. The embellishment of the 
oration, is the setting of the jewel. The verbal coloring 
of passions, emotions, desires, and sensations, is as 
necessary to fill the void of the insatiable mind, as the 
rigid investigation of metaphysics. To this class be- 
longs Punshon. He is not an extraordinary man, but 
he is remarkable. He is not as an oratw, imr excellence, 
nor as a composer, unrivalled, but, he is far above 
mediocrity. He is not unique in his superiority, but, 
he has peculiarities not found among his compeers, 
and which command attention He has husbanded his 
resources, and used them well, and be they many, or 
be they few, the talents have not been buried, and 
certainly have yielded abundant returns. He seems to 
hare felt the force of the poet's song : 

" I gave thee of my seed to sow ; 
Returns thou me an hundred fold ; 
Can I look up with face aglow ; 
And answer Father here is gold." 

Punshon is above medium height, and of full habits. 
He is broad-shouldered, and has a short neck, with 

Co pi.N p}I(jT(;raihs. 

well-developed muscles, and might be taken by a. 
stranger for a well-to-do, healthy, prosperous, and happy 
farmer. His face is lull and Horid, yet, the facial an- 
gularities, are well defined, and althou^^h rounded ofif, 
they are still prominent. The nose is thin throughout 
its whole extent. The nostrils are large, and expansive- 
The eyes are small and twinkling, with an undcfmnble 
/unniness, and a sly roguish sparkle about them, which 
indicate a measure of humour, running over. The brows 
overhang them considerably, and hvave appended to 
their lower margin, eyelids thick and large. The mouth 
is large, but not expressive, as the manner of some 
mouths are by nature, and the teeth — well, the day is 
past to characterize their beauty in any one. The fore- 
head is retiring from bef(>re backwards, and it also re- 
cedes rapidly laterally towards the crown, but, it is wide 
at its base, and there is a considerable space from the 
ear to the front of it, indicating a brain above the ave- 
rage, in the intellectual part, if bnnifwhgists are to be 
believed. The hair js slightly curly and may have been 
auburn in earlier days. The temperament seems to be 
nervo-sanguine. He stoops slightly, as too many clergy, 
men, and liter.iry men do, from the execrable habit of 
crouching, or stooping in writing, which many of them 
indulge in, and thus contract the lungs, and squeeze life 
out in the desperate struggle to keep it in. There is 
nothing striking about Punshon as a whole, and yet if 
we met him in the street, he would catch the eye by 
means of the faculty, which I may be allowed to call 
intuitive selection. His gestures in speaking are few ; 
consisting principally of a sudden stretching out of the 


right-arm, or occasionally a sudden elevation of both 
hands simultaneously, during the delivery of the pathetic, 
and devotional passages of a lecture. He indulges in 
no violent gesticulation, nor in contortions of the face. 
He seems to eschew the power of action, and trusts to 
the inherent work of his composition, rather than to an 
animated delivery. I must not l)C understood as insin- 
uating that he is destitute of vivacity in speech, or llexi- 
bility of voice in speaking, or that he is a stoic, and dis- 
])lays no more emotion than a statue, for that is not my 
meaning. He has those positive qualities of speech, and 
voice, and expression, so necessary to orators, but not 
in a superlative degree. His enunciation is distinct. 
Kvery syllable is pronounced, and every word and sen- 
tence is kept apart from its fellows. The fulcrum 
words of clauses and sentences are slightly emphasized, 
as those which give momentum to the whole. He does 
not confine himself to simple Anglo-Saxon words, but 
seems to have a fondness for classical terms, or at least 
for those which are Anglicised. I do not say there is a 
rcdundency of such, but they are frequently used. His 
style is climacteric, and in this respect Guthrie and he 
are alike. Spurgeon's force, and Beecher's also, are of 
the epigrammatic kind. They will give a few words or 
sentences hissing hot. incisive, and i)ierceing as a rifle- 
bullet. They go directly to the mark without circum- 
locution, and without verbal profusion. Punshon has 
a style which is cumulative, and abounds in' figurative 
language. He seems to delight in an intensity of color- 
ing, in the grand personages of his tableaux. Like the 
.snow-ball which begins its motion no larger than a boy's 


marble, on the top of the Alps, and gathers size, and 
power, as it goes, until ihe avalanche becomes irresist- 
ible, so he goes from one word picturing to another* 
dashing the colors on with a lavish brush, here, there, 
and yonder, until the portraiture is complete. He 
climbs the hill of antithesis, step by step, until one of 
the peaks are gained, higher by far than its fellow-crags, 
and from its brow ot eternal sunshine a glorious pro- 
spect opens to the view. Herein is Punshon's foriey 
coupled with elegant language, neatly fitted together. 
The voice is husky and far from pleasant in its tones, 
but that is soon forgotten in the surging tidal waves of 
beautiful rhetoric. His eloquence is that of a minor 
Cicero, not so much stirring as pleasing, not the heroic, 
but the charming, not the rousing, but musical, and 
not the thrilling, and soul-harrowing, but the soothing 
anodyne, which does not so much stimulate to acts of 
noble daring, as allay the maddening and guilty fears of 
awakened consciences, by pointing out a way of escape. 
The outpourings of eloquence are like the murmuring 
and rippling stream, flowing in silvered beauty through 
domestic scenery, sylvan shades, dreamy dales, and 
misty plains. There are a few majestic cataracts, im- 
petuous cascades, overtopped by grand old grey crags, 
the eyrie jof the eagle, or dark green pines .noaning the 
requiem of departing time in the birthplace of the tem- 
pest. The smooth flowing notes of a rhythmal chorus 
are there, but seldom or ever the battle scenes of a grand 
Oratorio. When Cicero delivered his orations, the 
Roman people cried out smilingly, " What a beautitul 
speaker." When Demosthenes uttered, in irony most 

^ PUNSHON. 65: 

bitter, in sarcasm the most catting, and in invective- 
thrice heated in patriotic ardour, and hostility, his Phil- 
ippics against the Macedonian king, the Greeks forgot 
their heart-burnings, jealousies, and minor dissensions, 
under the scathing words of the impetuous orator, and 
raised to the highest point of daring, the sound of 
multitudinous voices rent the air, and above the loudest 
plaudits, rose the battle cry " Let us go and fight Philip.'' 
The two orators were lypes of two classes of men, 
different in temperament, education, and high resolve, 
but, each had a vocation to fill in this respect. Punshorb 
has doubtless taken great pains to perfect his lectures, 
especially, those delivered in Canada, and which were 
originally spoken in Exeter Hall, London. As the 
painter or sculptor perfects his work by degrees, and by 
great pains-taking, and skill, makes the figures almost 
instinct with life in appearance, so has he amended, re- 
vised, and corrected his creations, until they become 
models of good taste, and faultless execution. We 
are surprised, however, how one of so much versatility 
in style, is satisfied with the iteration, and reiteration of 
the same lectures. Ordinary mortals would find them 
wearisome at least, and to avoid the cloying taste, would 
seek in new explorations of thought, a field of excite- 
ment, of expansion, and investigation. An old story 
loses to the reciter its novelty and power in much re- 
petition, and thus blunted in pungency, and force, and 
pathos. Not so with Punshon, he tells the oft-told 
truths, with the same earnestness and beauty, as when 
first penned, and it matters not to him if his lecture is 
forestalled by the enterprising printer, and tlie audience 


in possession of the whole discourse in pau'iphlct form, 
he delivers his address with the same unction, unabashed 
and undismayed. I do not think that his mind is en- 
.dowed with the analytical in an eminent degree. His 
lectures and sermons do not show it. He possibly will 
never excel in dissecting concrete truths, and in unravel- 
ling mystery, but, he will build a goodly structure on a 
foundation, which others have laid, with material of his 
own devising, like Le Place on the substratum laid down 
by Newton in his Principia^ or like the busy bee, he 
gathers honey from the flowers everywhere, and gives 
to the world a rich verbiage, pleasant to the taste, if not 
nnique to the understanding. Such men belong to no 
one church in reality, but, to humanity at large. They 
are not perfect in style, composition, or delivery. Who 
is ? Their sphere of usefulness is contracted by no 
walls of sectional partition, and although they do not 
reach the height of elocutionary transcendentaHsm, nor 
the depth of a cold and logical materialism, nor the 
pseudo-profound lore of rationalism, nor the circumfer- 
ence of brilliant talent, and striking genius, yet, in all 
enobling quaUties, they stand Sauls, head and shoulders 
above their fellows, in the entirety of manhood, and 
stride with gigantic steps, in the van of rhetorical influ- 
ence. What a contrast such men are to the vast 
majority of public speakers! This age is one marked 
for its much speaking, from after dinner rhapsodies over 
the "flowing bowl " to the trashy political effort in the 
forum, and from the "them is my sentiments" of the 
stump orator, delivered to gaping rustics, to the classic 
and icebergian frigidity of the polished monitor, whose 



predilections may be clear as a winter's sky, and 
studded as with planetary splendour, but, cold as that 
of a northern clime. We are glad when the Almighty 
in his beneficence gives to the world, men, whose words 
warm human hearts, and whose thoughts embodied 
in choicest phrases, stir profoundly the " better angels 
of our nature." 



IN 1864. 

DURING the Campaign of 1864, the principal 
armies of the North and South were in a life 
anddeath struggle, between Washington and Richmond. 
The head and front of the rebellion were there, and all 
knew, if they were crushed, the body must fall into decay. 
The army of the Potomac, and the army of Virginia, 
had been for three years watching each other, with 
lynx-eyes, like skilful pugilists, no\/ and then giving a 
blow, in order to ascertain the weak, and strong points 
of one another. With the exception of the first battle 
of Bull's Run, the Southern army of Virginia had only 
one general, but not so with the army of the Potomac, 
it had been commanded by general after general, ap- 
pointed primarily through the ill-advised importunities of 
the press, or the frenzied clamour of the mob, or ignorant 
public opinion, such being unable to judge as to the cap- 
abilities of the army, on the the one hand, and of the 
difficulties to contend with, in the face of a wily foe, oa 
the other. The American people expected more from 
this army than any other in the field, yet, strange to 
say, it had ruined the reputation of nearly every general 
who commanded it, and who had been victorious every- 
where else. It had fought the foe, on maiy a well con" 
tested field, and had thundered twice at the portals of 
Richmond, butthe goal seemed as faroff as ever. Braver 
men never lived, and died, as the graves behind them 
testify, yet a strange fatality dogged their footsteps,. 


leaving on all sides a trail of blood. This army knew, 
and the whole world knew, that on it chiefly depended 
the success of the union cause. In the Spring of 1864, 
there was a final gathering of the soldiery for a deter- 
mined march to Richmond, or rather to annihilate Lee's 
army, and scatter its remnants to the four winds of 
heaven. Meade had been partially successful at Get- 
tysburg, and to him was entrusted the army of the 
Potomac proper, consisting of the 2nd, 5th, 6th and 
9th corps : the ist and 3rd being merged into the 2nd 
and 5th corps. On the ist of May the 9th corps* 
commanded by Gen. Burnside, lay at Annapolis as if 
ready to embark for distant service, the remaining three 
were camped in front of Lee, between the Rapidan and 
Rappahannock. At this time there was concentration 
everywhere. Butler, who failed in the South, was re- 
called to occupy Bermuda-Hundreds, at the confluence 
of the James and Appomattox rivers, in the rear of 
Richmond. Gen. Gilhnore was recalled from before 
Charleston, to harass the enemy, on the Peninsula, and 
at Suffolk. Gens. Crook, and Averell, and Sigel, were 
to occupy with a firm hand Western Virginia, while 
Sherman and Thomas were to harass the enemy in the 
south-west, assisted by Banks at Mobile. The plan 
was good, but was badly spoiled in the execution. 
Banks suddenly left Mobile intact, and went on a wild- 
goose chase, up Red River, and was badly beaten, leav- 
ing Sherman tb meet a concentrated enemy single- 
handed. Sigel, who was expected to clear the Shen. 
andoah Valley of the enemy, and knock at the western 
gates of Richmond, was himself sent pellmell down the 


valky of hu:::iliation into Harper's Ferry, and such im- 
petus had he gathered in his downward, and b^ ck-ward 
course, that Maryland had to receive in dismay, his 
body guard, and the disjecta membra of his army. The 
failure of these armies loosed Lee's hands in the South, 
and enabled him to concentrate in front of Washing- 
ton. Breckenridge was recalled from the Shenandoah, 
Finnegan from Florida, Beauregard from Charleston, 
Pickett from North Carolina, and Buckner from West- 
ern Virginia. The destination of Burnside was a puzzle 
to all but those in high command. When he broke up 
his camp, some thought he was on the way to Washing- 
ton — others that he would sail up the Rappahannock, 
or the James, or the York, to unite with the forces 
under Butler ; but after the review of his troops by 
Lincoln, — especially the negro division of the 9th corps, 
which was going to certain victory, or to sure death, tor 
after the cold-blooded butcheries of Fort Pillow, Ply- 
mouth, and Milliken's Bend, no quarters were asked ^ 
and none given — Burnside suddenly appeared widi 
Meade on the Rapidan. At this time Gen. Grant was 
made commander-in-chief, and took direct command of 
the army of the Potomac. Speculation was rife as to 
what he would do, to dislodge Lee, from his entrench- 
ment. Would he walk, like Pope, into the very jaws 
of the lion, and share the same fate? Would he move 
by his right toward the mountains of Blue Ridge, and 
force Lee to retreat, or give battle on the left of his 
fortifications ? Or would he make a sudden dash on 
< Fredericksburg, and cross the river there, bristling with 
guns, and swarming with men ? None could tell, but 


all saw that the huge belligerent was drawing up slowly 
its mammoth legs for a move, and consequently every 
rumour was listened to, t\ try fa ma clamosa had believ- 
ers, and every man, in the teeming camp, was on the qtdi 
vive. The rebel army lay at Orange Court House, 
nearly west of the wilderness, with Clark Mountain in 
his rear, — a capital point for observation. At dawn, on 
the 3rd of May, all hypothesis were put at rest, and the 
first act in the bloody drama had commenced. On 
the flanks, the Ely, and Germania fords were crossed 
by Gregg's, and Wilson's cavalry, followed respectively 
by the 2nd, 5th, and 6th corps. The roads were dry» 
and clouds of dust obscured the light of the sun, that 
looked of a blood-red colour. Grant's intention was 
to slip suddenly round Lee's right, his stereotyped tac- 
tics, and already part of Grant's army had passed him. 
He had no wish to fight then, but Lee saw his oppor- 
tunity, and putting his army in motion on the 4th, 
stmck Grant's army about the centre. The time was 
critical, Grant's reserve artillery, and 8,500 supply 
waggons were partially exposed. Think of it : one 
hundred waggons with four mules reach a mile, that 
would make 85 miles of a train ! His lines were neces- 
sarily' attenuated but fight he must, for he was marching 
along one side of an isosceles triangle, and Lee along 
the other, and at the apex a collision of contending 
forces must take place. Were it not for his train Grant 
could have passed the dangerous pcint, but now it was 
too late. He wheels his forces towards the West, and 
prepares for battle Burnside was left at the Rippa 
hannock to cover the Capital until such time as Lee 


was sufTicicntly employed, to attempt a diversion to- 
ward Washington, on the evening of the 4th, however, 
he was on the march to join the army. The wilderness 
is not a barren, open waste, but is full of clumps of oaks, 
cedars, and stunted pines, interspersed at long intervals, 
by small farm-steads. Here the first blow was given. 
At the 'Wilderness tavern, on the Stevensburg plank 
road, the Northern army came in contact with Ewell's 
brigade, and soon Hill's, and Longstreet's corps joined 
in the issue. The woods, and stream and ravines per- 
vented both armies from making simultaneous advan- 
ces, but still there was cpntinucis fighting of the most 
desperate character. The fusilade rattled along the 
front, as if a monster piano, sadly out of tune, was 
being played by unskilful hands, and in the interludes 
of piping bullets, roared and bellowed, the still more 
discordant cannon. In clumps of bushes, by the run- 
ning brooks, in sequestered dales, the struggle went on 
intermittingly, and spasmodically. There were no 
general advances, in lines or by columns, in battle's 
magnificent array, but a sort of indecisive attempt on 
either side, to gain time, and to feel each other's 

Thus Thursday passed away. On Friday Lee felt 
he had before him a serious work, and he knew that 
Grant, by tactics not often resorted to in the face of an 
enemy, was attempting to make an advance by cutting 
loose his connections from Washington, and withdraw- 
ing corps after corps, from his right, and placing them 
on his left, thus making an advance laterally. Lee 
attempted to spoil this game by making a formidable 


advance on Grant's right as this movement wae in 
Iransitu. He fell, like a thunderbolt, upon Rickett's 
division of the 6th corps, and captured Gen. Seymour, 
and a portion of his brigade. The reverse however 
Avas only temporary, for the marching troops turned to 
the rescue of their comrades and drove back the enemy. 
All Friday, and Saturday mornings, the fighting was 
very severe ; 260,000 men were struggling for the 
mastery. From morning dawn, to morning dawn, 
with the exception of a few hours at midnight, blood 
flowed like water. The outline of six miles of conflict- 
ing men could be seen from almost any elevation, by 
the dense clouds of gun-powder smoke, at one time 
settling down sulkily upon the tree tops, and at another 
driven up into the blue expanse by the passing breeze 
— and also from the cheers and counter-cheers heard 
now, far in advance, and anon very near, as the bloody 
tide ebbed and flowed, leaving behind it the usual 
debris of human misery, laceration, woe, and death, 
On Saturday morning five miles of wheeled ambu. 
lances wended along, a melancholy train, to Fredericks- 
burg. About II o'clock, a.m., Lee began to retreat 
and in so doing threw himself squarely in front of 
Grant, therefore. Grant had the disadvantage of being 
compelled to take circuitous marches, while Lee had a 
direct road. The one had to make arcs of circles, in 
every advance, while the other retreated on the chords 
of these arcs. At Spottsylvania, Lee offered partial 
battle, on the banks of the Po, and the Ny. On Satur- 
day, the 7th, Gen. Gregg, and Gen. Fitz Hugh Lee 
had met, and had a short, but sharp cavalry contest. 


On the 9th the 5th corps were in hot pursuit, when it 
was suddenly checked by Ewell, and Longstreet, and 
thrown back in considerable confusion on the 6th 
corps. It rallied however, and the two corps chagrined 
at this reverse, drove the enemy, with considerable 
vim, to his original position. Next morning, Tuesday 
the loth, Grant advanced, determined to force the 
enemy from his strong position, and from morning to 
noon, the whole of both armies were engaged in mortal 
combat. This country is marshy and more open, and 
consequently, artillery was oftener brought into requis- 
ition. Here columns advancing to the attack with fixed 
bayonets, in open fields, or in treacherous morass, were 
unexpectedly met by grape, and canister ; there dense 
bodies of men were nearlydeciminate by explodingshells, 
coming down in sixes, and sevens at a time, and hurtling 
solid, serrated fragments in perfect showers, whistling, 
and singing, and howling, like fiends, a weird requiem 
song over the living, and the dead. Still no ground was 
gained, by eithei army. The rebel outer works were 
carried, by a division of the 6th corps, about 2 o' clockv 
p.m., but the place was made too hot for them m con- 
sequence of an enfilading fire by the rebels. There was 
very little fighting on the 11 th, but on the 12th hostil- 
ities commenced, and just at the break of day, Birney's 
and Barlow's divisions, silently and stealthily like a 
beast of prey, bore down on the enemy, gathered up 
as if it were a gossamer, the enemy's picket line, and 
on the run, plunged into the enemy's encampment, 
capturing Gens. Stewart and Johnston, at breakfast,, 
three thousand men, twenty cannon, and ten standards. 


In a few minutes this coup d ctat was completed, amid 
cheers and defiant yells. This unexpected assault, was 
the prelude to a general battle. The 9th corps ad- 
vanced to profit by the capture. Longstreet was brought 
forward to recover lost ground. From these sections 
of the army the strife spread, until by 9 o'clock a.m., 
the fighting was general, and for fifteen hours it con. 
tinued without intermission. The pertinacity, obstinacy 
and valor, of both sides, had no e(iual in any battle of 
the war. There were charges and counter charges, 
sudden assaults and ambuscades ; a perpetual belching 
of hundreds of cannon, and an unceasing din of fire- 
arms, voices, shouts, shrieking, wailing, moaning, mut- 
tering delirium, curses the most bitter, aud laconic im- 
precations more pointed than polite. This medley made 
from day break, to late in the evening, an uproar indes.. 
cribable. The combatants heard it, and fs^lt it, and 
despatches, the symbols of human sorrow, were sent 
* trom out the field of blood, to all tl e Republic every 
day, as sad messages, that v.-ere telling the widow, and 
the fatherless, and the fair maiden, that a vast holocaust 
had numbered their loved ones among the victims of a 
bloody oblation. " The flowers of the forest were a' 
wede away." " 

At night Grant had only advanced 1,200 yards, in 
spite of the most persistent efforts ; but the position 
was so advantageous to the Union troops, that Lee 
deemed it prudent to withdraw his army during the 
darkness. It had tought bravely, but was fast be- 
coming decimated. For the first time it assumed the 
form of a semi-circle, with its convexity to the foe ; 


somewhat liku Meade's army on Cemetery Hill, Get 
tysburg. From the 12th to the i8th there was only 
skirmishing, but sometimes so heavy as topartake of 
the nature of miniature battles. On the 19th, Ewell 
made a sudden attack on the rear-right of Grant's 
army, and gained sorr e advantage, but it was only a 
feint to cover Lee's retreat to the North Anna. Grant 
followed sharply, driving the enemy from a strong po- 
sition on the banks of the Mattapony, and then made 
another attempt to swing round Lee's right. This 
brought about a heavy artillery fire, and a severe 
cavalry engagement at Bethesda Church, the Shelton 
House, and Coal Harbour, within about 18 miles of 
Richmond. Cannon opened upon cannon, only 
about 200 feet apart. In the charges of cavalry, friends 
and foes became commingled in the whirlwind of strife, 
and then hand to hand encounters took place without 
order and without discipline, but Lee held his ground, 
for he knew that another move towards the Capital 
would be demoralizing to his troops, and would put 
Richmond in jeopardy. He was reinforced at this 
time by South Carolina troops, as was also Grant, by 
the 1 8th Corps under General Smith. Still, notwith- 
standing these additions, of about 20,000 men each, both 
armies were weaker than they were on the Rapidan. 
The losses could not be far from 60,000 men, killed 
and wounded, since the beginning of the Campaign. 
Grant made another flank movement, but, this time 
backward along the road that McClellan took near by 
Malvern Hill, thence to Bermuda-Hundred, cossing 
the James river, at City Point, and, by rapid marches, 


attempted to capture Petersburg, in the rear of Rich- ' 
mond — break up tlie railroads — stop the supplies — 
and adopt precisely the same tactics which secured to 
him Vicksburg. A blundering cavalry general failed 
to throw himself between Petersburg, and Richmond, 
and cut the railroad. Butler, with characteristic ob- 
stinacy, ignorance, and jealousy, maintained that most 
disastrous of all positions for that army, in the field, — 
a "masterly inactivity" — and while Grant was trans- 
porting his army across the James River, Butler al- 
lowed the golden hours to slip away, and the conse- 
quence was, Lee stood face to face, with Grant, on the 
new field of operations. Both armies, completely 
exhausted, commenced a species of siege operations. 
The Union army stretched from near Chapin's blufJ 
on the right, to Norfolk and Petersburg railroad on the 
left, a distance of about twelve miles. The shovel, 
and spade, and pick, now were plied busily, in 
making redoubts, ritie-pits, fosses, parallels, and exca- 
vations. Butler, in order to avoid Howlett's battery 
on a bluff, and at a bend of the James' river, com- 
menced to dig the well-known Dutch Gap Canal, a 
monument of folly, and the grave of many a negro. 
He kept hundreds of men to work at it for ten months, 
and yet no monitor ever sailed through it, for it was 
never completed, and is a memento of the burrowing 
propensities of the one-eyed ogre, whose cruelty and 
brutality have become a by-word, and a reproach. 
When Grant was securely entrenched, he began his for- 
mer strategy by extending his left. After a severe » 
struggle, he seized the Weldon railroad, the fortified 


works, beyond the railroad at Poplar church, the Pee- 
bles house and the Heights on the Pegrara estate. 
Gen. Pegram came into notice at the beginning of the 
war, by being defeated horse, foot> and artillery, by 
McClellan, in Western Virginia. This fight brought 
'• Mac " into notice also. What a pity ! The Pe- 
gram and Peebles mansions had still left them some 
furniture badly used. The damask curtains did very 
well for blankets. The sofas, minus legs, were a treat 
after sleeping on the ground. The doors and windows 
had been perforated by shells and round shot ; but 
rags (of which we had an abundant supply) stopped 
up the crevices, and the medical department took 
thankful possession in cold October, the envy of out- 
siders, whom fortune had not favoured. On the 25th 
October it was evident to the medical staff that another 
step was to be made to the left. The south side 
railroad, only ten r les distant, was a great thor- 
oughfare from the south-east to Richmond, and it was. 
important to lay an embargo on the supplies of the 
enemy. The front was well fortified and all available 
troops were withdrawn from it, and formed at right 
angles to the front, and made to swing, as if upon a 
pivot, from the Pegram House, in a south-easterly dir- 
ection, for about six miles. The field hospitals were 
emptied. The military railroad company brought to 
the extreme left trains of cars filled with straw. 
Four days' rations (already cooked) were in every 
man's haversack. Supernumeraries, sutlers, baggage, 
&€., were sent to the rear. All night long there was 
a steady stream of soldiers marching to the left, 


through pine woods, and over ruined plantations, and 
as we lay sleeping in the shelter of a dwarfed rose 
tree, our naps were often disturbed by the rattling 
scabbards of cavalry, or the voices of officers of infan- 
try, in sotto voce tones, j^iving command to passing col- 
umns. As the 27th October dawned a regular ad- 
vance was made along the whole line. The excite- 
ment was intense, for if Lee was caught napping, and 
we could take possession of the railroads, the beleag- 
uered city was doomed, and that too, in 48 hours. 
As mile after mile was marched over, and not a 
solitary shot fired, we bes:an to think that we would 
find deserted camps. Congratulations were being ex- 
changed on the probability, after six miles of a hitherto 
terra incoijiiita had been left behind, and the south- 
side railway and itn extemporaneous branches almost 
in sight ; but we were too ha-^ty in our conclusions, 
for at half-past ten o'clock, a. m., far to the left was 
heard a hea/y fusilade accompanied by the occa- 
sional boom of ordnance. The firing became heav- 
ier and nearer, until immediately in our front and 
out of the bowels of a marsh, belched forth a furious 
sheet of flame, and sung in close proximity, the rifle 
bullet as if the air was pregnant with death, and un- 
earthly sounds. We soon realized the fact that we 
had not stiuck a thin skirmish line, but rather the 
well-posted army of Lee waiting oar approach. The 
day was spent in vain attempts to pierce that line, 
and although wc were at times partially successful, yet 
the battle of Hatcher's Run was fought with a loss of 
4,000 men, and ** Richmond was not taken." We 


retreated to the old camp. The wounded suffered 
severely during the night. A cold rain commenced to 
pelt unpiteously, in the early part of the evening, and 
continued all night. The dripping forest, the sighing 
of the wind through the pines, the inky darkness, and 
the moans of the wounded, lying on the ground, or 
being carried by on stretches, were enough to make 
humanity shudder, and curse that exciting cause which 
loaded the air with groans, and the earth with corpses, 
and hung a pall of mourning, over many a disconsolate 
household for those that were "never more" on earth. 
Many a Rachel, during those few months, had been 
weeping for her children, who have left not even a 
record behind, 

" Their memory and their name are gone ; 
Alike unknowing and unkown." 

The newspapers told us of brilliant charges — of in- 
domitable courage — ot j^lorious deeds — of our names 
being inscribed on the scroll of fame, and of being 
held in a grateful remembrance by a loving country. 
With the words ringing in our ears, and home and 
dear ones cosily kept in some " nook or cranny " of 
our hearts, we jump into the breach and are Samsons 
among heroes. Well, take up that lantern from the 
operating table, — don't stumble over those arms and 
legs yet "warm and quivering — nor slide and fall in 
those slippery pools of gore, nor mutilate with your 
heels those bodies which breathed their last in the 
surgeon's hands ; come out into the darkness and the 
forest. To the right are other lights flickering, and 


fatigue parties are on the search. "'Will you please come 
here," we hear a voice feebly cry ; a gray-haired man 
of nearly 60 years of age is lying by a tree wounded. 
His right foot has been torn away by a piece of shell, 
and he has tied up the stump with the lining of his 
coat. Fifty yards farther on is a group of wounded 
and dead — about ten. A shell had burst in the mids 
of a company, and this was the result: three died; 
one dying ; one with his jaw broken, and one of his 
thighs torn ; one with his chest torn, gasping for 
breath ; another lying, with concussion of the brain, 
by a blow from a partially spent fragment oi a shell, and 
two others disabled from sundry wounds, and all this 
misery from one exploded missile. 

The ambulances are brought, and these are tenderly 
cared for by mem.bers of the Christian and Sanitary 
Commissions. We plunge farther into the forest, and 
hear through the storm some one singing a ribald song. 
Strange sound and surely a strange place for such 
hilarity. Let us go and rebuke him for his profanity. 
Here he lies by a decayed log, with his face to the 
heavens, gazing intently on the tree tops, nor does he 
heed our approach. Fair hair clotted with blood is 
hanging over his forehead. The skull is fractured and 
the torn brain is slowly oozing out on his temple. 

" He knows not, hears not, cares not what he does." 

Yonder are two soldiers of the 2nd corps carrying a 
wounded sergeant on a stretcher. He is also delirious 
and singing in low plaintive tones, ** Rally round the 
flag, boys," A wail comes from a thicket down a deep 


ravine, and there lies the living among the dead. A 
wounded man, makes a pillow of a dead companion, 
and at his feet are remains of another body. A vacant 
stare — a gasping cry tor water, — a twitching of the 
muscles^ and all is over. A tree is turned up by the 
roots, and in its sheltering cavity lies a Frenchman, 
raving like a madman, with the loss of both legs. He 
jerks out, snatches of the Marsaillese Hymn, inter- 
mingled with quotations from Corneille, and those of 
street doggerel ballads. Reason is dethroned, and 
death has marked its victim. Over the marsh, are 
found commingled both friends and foes. The brother- 
hood of a common misery binds the wounded together 
now. No reproaches, no taunts, and no invectives, 
break in upon the groans, yells and meanings, which 
fill, with expressive discord, the midnight air. The 
knees, arms, feet and faces of hastily buried dead, of 
past struggles had been, by the recent rains, washed 
into sight, ghastly evidences of mortality; and " This 
is glory, this is fame." But why need we give details 
of such common scenes. " The night after the battle," 
when the sum total is reached, and all gathered into 
one hospital, then we have some idea of the untold 
horrors of such mutilated men, being nights and days 
uncared for, thirsty, hungry and faint, yet it is wonder- 
ful how indifferent men become to danger. We visited 
the trenches many a time on duty, and were often 
astonished at the reckless exposuie of those on guard. 
Behind earthworks only three teet in height, were 
posted a continuous line ot men about six feet apart, 
some were firr>g a sort of /^// de Joie, at an imaginary 


enemy — if no real foe appeared — while others were 
killing time, by playing cards, and improvised chequers, 
" fox and geese " &c., for a change, and crouching in 
all imaginable postures. This outpost was only about 
two hundred feet from similar works by the Souihrofis. 
We never did as much crawling on all fours since we 
were born, and never produced as much abrasion of the 
cuticle of our knees, and elbows, since the days of 
hunting eggs under the barr , or climbing the trees after 
birds' nests, as we did in the neighbourhood of Forts 
Stedman, Sedgwick, and " The Sisters." If a man 
wishes to have peculiar sensations running like currents 
of electricity along the spine, let him creep, turtle like, 
along these parallels, with his back on a level with the 
top of these defences, and whether he be a coward or 
not, his ears will be peculiarly sharp when extra bullets 
are humming over-head, and we predict that he will 
embrace more fondly than ever his mother earth. When 
the blood is hot, even a weak-kneed man will perform 
feats that will astonish himself, but in cold and wet 
trenches, it needs bull-dog pertinacity, and great endur- 
ance to finally conquer. The fiery French were une- 
qualled in an assault, or in the tidal waves of conflict, 
if not continued until the hot fire burned out ; but in 
long marches, sickness, a continuous struggle, the Anglo- 
Saxon race has no ecjual. In the army of the Potomac 
the generals knew what to expect from each corps, and 
division, and brigade,and regiment, by the predominant 
nationality in these sections of an army. " Birds of a 
feather", in the long run, manage to g'^t together, and 
thus takinp; advantage of peculiar national idiosyncra- 



cies, the successful commander knew where was dash 
or doggedness, or obstinacy, or perseverance, and laid 
his plans accordingly. The army was a sandwich, com- 
posed of the different strata of bread and meat, and 
butter, and mustard. Will the reader be please, to draw 
the inference, and say, to which of these ingredients he 
would refer the down-east Yankee, the " bruisers " and 
" Hammerites " of New York, the *' plug uglies " ot 
Baltimore, the Dutch of Pennsylvania, the nou-descript, 
of the border states, or the American. French, aud 
French Canadians of Illinois? These and a dozen other 
equally distinct classes of citizens, including 20,000 
Canadians, made up the armies ot the great Republic. 
And while, at first, these foreigners had no particular 
interest, as a whole, in the war and its results, yet, the 
army of the Potomac had suffered so many reverses, 
while all its companions in arms were everywhere else 
victorious, that at last personal chagrin, and repeated 
disappointment, had given it a sort of desperate courage 
which at last begot mobilized valour, and finally victor}'. 
In 1865, the Hatcher's Run battle was fought over 
again, and the same movements," over the left," were 
made, which culminated in the capture of Lee's forces, 
and that of the long sought for city — the first reduced 
to 30,000 men, and the other almost a second Moscow, 
in partial ruins. With the capitulation of the army of 
Virginia, the war ended. The head was crushed, and 
the convulsive movements of the body, were only the 
throes of dissolution. The curtain fell, for the last act 
in the tragedy was ended. The loss of human life was 
immense, and from the bombardment of Sumpter, 


during which "nobody was hurt/' to the surrender at 
Five Forks, a magnificent army of stalwart, healthy and 
vigorous men had been swept away, and we venture to 
predict that the sensible men of the United States, will 
seriously consider,knowing the severe trials of the past, 
before they will consent to plunge their country into 
another war. Power, greed of possessions, lust after 
conquest, national pride, and envy, may sway and urge 
to violence, the masses who have nothing to lose, and 
plunder of booty in prospect, but those, whose homes 
have been made desolate, or whose possessions have 
been swept away — or who have to meet by their taxes, 
the public creditors, with a still more depreciated cur- 
rency, will be a huge balance-wheel to regulate the 
spasmodic motive power of the political machine. Like 
the pommelled and bruised Scotch boys, whose bloody 
noses and black eyes told of sharp practice in the 
school ring, and who cried out simultaneously " Gin 
ye let me alane, I'll let you alane," so may the same 
wise course be pursued by the late belligerents, and let 
the dead past bury its dead. 

Not a spot of ground of the same area as that of 
Central Virginia, and the environs of Washington has 
ever been saturated, to the same extent, with human 
blood, in the same period of time. Not a day dawned 
for four long years but during its twenty-four hours, 
life was violently taken in the rifle pits, on the vidette 
lines, in the skirmish, or in the whirlwind of battle, and 
scarcely a hill or valley, from Fortress Monroe to the 
Shenandoah valley, and from Harrisburgh to the South- 
side Railroad, where there is not now some evidence of 


vandalism, rapine, cruelty, and of war-worn tracks of 
malice, and fiendish destruction to property and life. 
This was to be expected in a country that had become the 
theatre of war, but we know ot no land where the besom 
of vengeance had been so vigorously wielded, and so 
ruthlessly unsparingasin proud and aristocratic Virginia, 
the supposed home of American chivalry. In 1864 the 
country was one vast scene of ruin. The fences were 
gone and the landmarks removed. Where forests once 
stood in primal grandeur are even now forsaken camps. 
Where crops luxuriated, and which were never reaped 
are now myriads of graves, whose inmates are the stal- 
wart sons of the North, or of ihe Sunny South, but now 
festering, rotting, and in the wind, the rain? 
anil the sun of heaven, far awi^y from home, in, and on 
the clay of the " Old Dominion " The evil -omened 
raven and buzzanJ were the only living permanent 
occupants of the harvest- field. The plough could be 
seen half way stopped in its furrow from which the af- 
frighted husbandman, bond or free,hadfled in terror to 
gather (it might be) his wdfe and little ones into a place 
of shelter. Behind him boomed hostile cannon — bray- 
ed the hoarse bugle to the charge — clanked the rusty 
and empty scabbard of the fierce dragoons — ratded the 
ironed hoof of the war-horse — rolled and vibrated mufti- 
ed sound of the distant, but ever approaching drums — 
shrieked the demon shells in their fierce pathway 
through the heavens — glittered the accoutrements, and 
bayonets,and shotted guns,ofsMrging masses of humanity, 
murmured the multitudinous voices of legions of warri- 
ors " as the sound of many waters"panting fof the excite- 


nient and empty honors of battle. Here the poor son 
ot toil,or servitude had ploughed, or sowed, for himself 
or for his proud and hard taskmaster, but the Destroyer 
was mercilessly at his heels. The place that knew him 
once shall know him no more forever. The verdure ot 
his honjestead is turned into dust. The rural retreat 
has been despoiled and ravaged of its beauty, and the 
beautiful gardens, and fields, and magnolia groves are 
one vast city of the dead — a necropolis — where vorac- 
ious Mars has burned incense on his gory, reeking and 
dripping altars. AV'here love, and youth, and beauty 
met at trysting hours, then met the bearded heroes of 
many battles, and the scarred veterans of many a bloody 
fray. Where once rattled the phoeton of luxury, laden 
with the flower ot a proud aristocracy, rolled the pond- 
erous wheels of cannon, or reeking ambulances. Where 
once rode the gay bridal cortege making hills and val- 
lies vocal with song, and melody, and glee, charged tie- 
rce and cruel troopers — who like Attalus left desolation 
in their train. ^V''here hearthstones once shone in the 
ruddy light of home, with no bloodstains on the domes- 
tic hearth, and no ruthless invader to darken its door- 
lintels ; nor to sit unbidden by its hospitable tire, and 
unwelcome at its table, were blackened ruins, the 
monuments of cruelty, sitting solitary in the midst of 
desolation. FrieYids and foes alike had disembowelled 
the proud State, with the long gaunt tingers of rapine, 
and swept it of every trace of civilization save that of 
modern warfare. The remorseless and vengeful waves 
of pitiless conflict had met ; and surged, and dashed, 
and foamed, in wild fury over its fair landscape, until 


the spectator was almost compelled to believe that he 
was the victim of a hideous nightmare or some strange 
phantasm of the brain which time would dispel, and 

" Like the baseless fabric of a vision 
Leave not a wreck behind." 

We are told in classic history that the venerable and 
noble Trojan, ^I'^nens, stood in the naidst of carnage on 
the way to Mount Ida, as grey dawn began to herald 
in the day, and saw beneath him Troy in flames, and in 
the fulness of his heart cried out " lUium fuit'' The 
proud and noble city has been but shall be no more foi- 
ever. Virginia was the home of a proud, exclusive and 
haughty race that scorned the Northern men, and wo- 
men because of their so-called plebeian extraction, and 
treated the iar South with wonderous condescension 
because of the admixture " of the poor white trash.'' 
"Virginianus sum" was to them the same as " P.omanus 
sum" to the Romans, a passport of unusual significance, 
being an undisputed testimony of tiuble lineage and 
'* blood." They forgot that the pilgrims of Plymouth 
rock were puritans, and that the far South was settled 
by worthy Englishmen, and French Huguenots ; but 
Virginia was at one time a penal colony and their blood 
had diffused in it the blood of convicts. In all the fear. 
ful struggle through which they have passed " They 
have sowed the wind and reaped the whirlwind," for the 
exclusiveness, and hauteur, of the Virginian patrician 
have like his ephemeral glory passed pnantom-like 
away. The sword has cut the Gordian knot. This im- 
perfect glimpse of Virginia in 1864, is not written for 
effect, nor is it an idle chimera conjured up by a busy 


brain to fill to plethora the pen of fiction, for our hear^ 
was sad as the dreadful panorama passed day after day 
before our vision, and as we contemplated whatiuightbe 
the probable ftite of the tens of thousands of young and 
old, male and female, who were not to be found near 
their bleak and barren homes, and who were either in 
theirgraves,or standing within the rebel lines, or within 
the walls of some beleaguered city, we felt that eve:y 
Bueh liousehold would have had a history, sad, pitiful, 
and inevitable, the recital of whose woes would wring the 
most obdurate heart. Comfortable, happy, prosperous, 
peaceful Canada, does not know but very imperfectly 
what are the horrors of war at home. Glory, like a snow 
ball, gathors greatness the farther it rolls. The soldier's 
fame is a guerdon that needs to be at our doors in order 
to know how hollow is the empty bauble, 

" Religion, freedom, vengeance, what you will, 

A word's enough, to raise mankind to kill ; 

Some factious phrase by cunning caught and spread, 

That guilt may reign, and wolves and worms arc fed." 

We often grumble because of hard times, and failing 
banks, and fluctuating markets, and commercial pan- 
ics, and deficient harvests ; such make many men 
misanthropists, and miserable, drivelling, imbecile 
grumblers ; but let war ensue, and let the invader 
cross our borders, and let him for even one short 
month, burn, plunder, murder, and destroy, with only 
100,000 men, and we would think such times as 
these, halcyon days, and earnestly pray for their 
return. Not that our sons, and our daughters, would 
bow the knee to the oppressor, or be recreant to their 


trust, or tread their mother earth, a race of cowards, 
no, perish the thought, far better that Canada should 
be one scene of of utter ruin, than that we should not 
defend our freedom, our constitution, our laws, our 
country, and our flag, against any foes ; for lost man- 
hood, national decay, effeminacy,and tottering decrep- 
itude, would be an irreparable, and more to be lamen- 
ted, ten-fold, than all our riches, still let us be thank- 
ful for peace. We sit down " under our own vine, 
and fig-tree, none daring to make us afraid." We 
hear at morning dawn, noon, and eventide, the voices 
of affection, and friendship, mellowed, in being the 
out-gushing of hearts leal and true. We see on the 
right hand, and on the left, luxuriant fields filled to 
plentitude with a bounteous harvest, or barns burst- 
out with fulness, year after year, and a country dotted 
all over with rural retreats, beautiful villages, prospe- 
rous towns, and populous cities, covered and sur- 
rounded not by the dread paraphernalia of war, but 
by the emblems of peace and plenty. We see from 
day to day, faces not begrimmed by the smoke of 
battle, not scarred in the mortal combat, not fierce 
with hellish passions, nor contorted in the agonies of 
death ; but those bearing on every lineament " peace, 
good-will towards men." We lay our heads on our 
pillow at night, and are wooed to sleep by the quie- 
tude of nature, and are not disturbed by the boom of 
cannon, the roll of musketry, the yelling of human 
demons, and the cries of infuriated men. War does 
not break up our family circles, and does not snatch a 
link from the chain, a twig from the filial tree, a stone 


from the perfect arch, and a gem from the sparkling 
coronet. It makes no empty seat at the family board, 
where now sits the hope, pride, and joy, of the family. 
To gaze upon all these happy scenes and not upon 
a worse than sterile desert, should fill our souls with 
profound thankfulness to Him who holds the destiny 
of this mighty Empire, in the hollow of His hand. 
We never miss the spring till it is dry. We know not 
what hunger is, till the cupboard is empty, and gaunt 
famine is stalking through the land. We never appre- 
ciate health, until disease has commenced to prey 
upon the vitals, and the fell-destroyer, like a vampire, 
is tearing our heart-strings asunder, and we will not 
know of, and feel the blessing of peace, until relentless 
war has withered, and blighted, our beautiful Canada, 
as the Sirocco, with its hot breath, does the verdure of 
the East. But, even, in such an hour, although it might 
be, that our nation would be in the agonies of death, 
who would " turn and flee ?" 


IT is to be regretted that the reading Canadian 
public has not given that encouragement to 
Canadian authorship to which it is entitled ; it is not 
because ^e are illiterate, for no people on the face of 
the earth has better educational advantages, than we 
have, and few countries can boast of a greater number 
of readers. The politics of the country, the denomin- 
ational peculiarities, the news of the world, and the 
resources of this country are well understood, but the 
literature of Canada is comparatively unknown to the 
masses. This is an unknown region to them. The 
sensational and amatory fervor of a Byron — the social 
and patriotic songs of a Burns — the tame and quite 
Tersification of a Cowper — the smooth and flowing 
rhyme of a Wordsworth^ a Tennyson, or a Longfellow 
— the pathos and clarion notes of a Whittier — the 
humor of a Holmes or a Saxe, and the stilted and 
ambiguity of a so-called philosophic Tupper, are as 
familiar as nursery rhymes, but our poets have made 
sweetest melody, sung in fervid poetry, and depicted 
our matchl'^ss scenery in blank verse,and Runic rhyme 
and heroic stanzas ; but ** but charm they ever so 
wisely," we have turned a deaf ear to their sweetest 
strains, and shut our eyes to tb'^ brilliant Scintillations 
of gerJus, and intellection, which have illumined our 
histoi'ic page, so that foreign sages have wondered and 
admired. McLachlan has sung as sweet and noble 


Strains as ever were penned by the Ayrshire bard, or 
Motherwell ; Charles Sangster has depicted with a 
pencil of poetic light our noble lakes, the St. Law- 
rence, the Thousand Isles, the Saguenay, and the St. 
Clair. Heavysege has in "Saul" and "Jephthah's 
Daughter " produced tragedies that remind one of 
Sophocles, or Thespis, yet our patriotic countrymen 
and women purchase by nsillions, yellow covered liter- 
ature from our neighours that in every page is a sink 
of iniquity, and neglect home genius. 

The productions of prurient writers are eagerly 
sought for, in the newspapers and periodicals oi 
Leslie, Bonner, or Ballou, but our writers have found 
no appreciation of their work, and often have been 
overwhelmed with financial ruin, in giving their pro- 
ductions to the world. These are plain facts, and 
tell a severe lesson to us as regards our aesthetic 
tastes. It is true the Canadian public miy plead in 
extenuation, that so far it has had a protracted 
struggle, with stubborn torests, commercial depressions, 
and all the discomforts of a new country ; but genius 
is not a crei.tion of luxury, but is innate. Its work- 
ings have oftcner been seen in the hovels of de- 
pendency, and even penury, than in the gilded halls 
of affluence and independence, and it is something 
akin to this genius that appreciates its productions, 
and no toil, or hardships, or poverty can crush out of 
man's soul the aspirations of poetry, and the nobility 
of literature. What man or woman is there who can 
read "Scots wha hae wi' Wallace bled," or Tenny- 
son's " Charge of the Six Hundred," or " The 


Marseillaise Hymn," or " Rule Britannia" and not feel 
the blood flow quicker, and the nerves strung to a 
greater tension when these accents catch the eye or 
fall upon the ear? Well, let our readers recite McLach- 
lan's "Sir Colin Campbell at Ballaclava" or " Garibal- 
di," orSangster's " Battle of the Alma," or Heavysege's 
description of the battle of Gilboa, and not say truth- 
fully that our bards have been crowned on Parnassus, 
with the poet's immortal wreath. 

The reader should keep in mind the fact that 
mind and matter have this peculiarity in common, viz : 
a generic similarity, yet a specific difference. There 
is a similitude in the forest leaves, but no two leaves 
are alike ; every grain of sand seems like its fellow, 
but not one particle is exactly like another ; each 
star differs in glory and appearance from its lambent 
companion, yet to the naked eye these twinkling 
sentinels sgem almost one in outline and colour. 
Of all the myriads of the sons of Adam who have 
lived, moved, and had their being, no two are exactly 
alike physically, or mentally, and when the son of 
genius commits his thoughts to paper, these have 
stamped upon them the natural bias, and individuality, 
of the author. The writer cannot divest himself of 
• this peculiarity, any more than he can rob himself of 
his personal identity, and therefore a poet shows to 
vulgar gaze photographs of his inner life. 

The most exalted kind of poetry embraces all the 
range of human thought in heaven, or earth, or hell ; 
it scans with an eagle eye the modes of human 
intelligence, in consciousness, reflection, judgment, 


and all the multifarious forms of reasoning. It depicts 
as with a pencil of light all the sensations, passions, 
and emotions of the human soul, grasping in its right • 
hand, and exposing to view that which Heavysege calls 

" The motley multitude 
Magnanimous and mean." 

Much has been done by our sweet singers, to 
immortalize our country but who seem to be doomed 
to die " unwept, unhonoured and unsung." We do 
well to erect monuments over a Wolf, a Montcalm, a 
Brock, and over the Lime-ridge heroes, but our litera- 
ture, if found worthy, will survive marble, or stone, 
and when these tangible monuments of a nation's 
gratitude have been forgotten, our Anglo Saxon 
worthies will only be adding fresh lustre to their 
names, and to the memory of those of " whom the 
world was not worthy." 

We appeal to our young men and women to 
encourage in all possible ways, native talent. Give it 
the right hand of fellowship ; buy and read even 
works of mediocre pretentions, lest you turn away 
unawares an angel of light from your doors, and 
(juench by your coldness the first appearance of 
intellectual gems. You pride yourselves in showing at 
your exhibitions the domestic animals that dot your 
fields, and the cereals that press out in plentitude your 
granaries, and the fine arts that are budding in our 
midst 3 then let the same commendable emulation be 
evinced in offering a generous support to ov^ poets, who 
are now springing up on all hands, and some of whom 
will give to our country more than ephem^al renown. 


Let US encourage home productions, and native 
talent, in preference to even higher genius from abroad. 
It is worthy of censure that our best authors and our 
sweetest poets are comparatively unknown to Cana- 
dian people, although they have commanded attention 
and respect from the master minds of Britain, and the 
literati of the American Republic. What encourage, 
.-nent have we given to McLachlan, Heavysege, Sang- 
ster, and a dozen such ? How many of the masses 
have read the sweet lyrics of the first — the classic 
'' Saul " of the second — the stirring strains of the 
third — and the various and pleasant melodies of the 
last ? We can go in raptures over the lays of a 
Wordsworth, or a Poe, or a Dante, and often read the 
silliest effusions of those poets with unction, and 
ecstacy ? But however gifted, '* a prophet has no 
honour in his own country." The poet may throw 
out corruscations of genius that may be seen in un- 
usual splendor " afar off," by the generations following • 
but interest, or " malice aforethought," or culpable 
forgetfulness, will crush the most brilliant scintillations 
of undoubted literary power, if they spring from the 
log cabin, or the work-bench. He, the poor son of toil, 
may ask for bread while he lives, and our children 
will give him a stone monument when he dies. He 
may sing sweetly of us, " our woods and lakes," and by 
inspiration utter wise sayings that "on the outstretched 
finger of all time sparkle forever," but Canada gives 
no willing ear. Our population is as great as Scotland 
— our youth are as well educated — we have as much 
brain power. Why then do we not produce such men 


as Allan Ramsay, Scott, Alison, Burns, Jeffry, Dick, 
Reid, Sir W. Hamilton, and Napier ? Shall this gen- 
eration of Canadians pass away and add no rill, how- 
ever small, to the overflowing stream of Anglo Saxon 
literature ? Shall the master-minds of four millions of 
people never soar above the rise and fall of stocks — the 
profits and losses of commerce — the trickery of political 
warfare — and the terrible, earnest, but ever necessary 
toils, and anxieties of our common humanity ? We 
have an earnest of better things to come, and it is our 
duty to encourage *' home productions," be they mind 
or matter. Let Canadian genius be our first care, and 
let us extend to Canadian literature the right hand of 
fellowship, even if it is "homespan," and has not the 
fine " nap " upon it of the gorgeous periodicals of 
Britain and the United States. The mental and mora 
power are in our midst — " Let there be light." 


A FEW days have only elapsed since a magnificent 
Pullman Palace car passed on the Groat Western 
Railway, and within two hundred yards of where I 
now write, filled with passengers who never changed 
cars since they left San Francisco, only seven days 
before. I contrasted their journey and one I made 
in 1850 to this El Dorado of the West. The gold 
mania was then at its height. Thousands, and tens of 
thousands were crowding all the thorough-fares on 
the way to the golden sands of California. Some 
risked the dangers of the stormy Cape ; others went 
through northern Mexico or over the United States 
territory, but by far the greater number went by the 
Isthmus of Panama. To-day we have splendid 
saloon cars furnished with all the luxuries of an 
eastern palace, from ice-creams, pine-apples, old port, 
roast beef, ai^ pumpkin pies, to beds of down, 
silken curtains, golden tassels, Brussels carpets, 
marble wash-stands and dressing-tables, and all these 
comforts while whirling along over hill and dale ; 
through luxuriant forests and tangled weed-bound 
swamps — over undulating prairies like the rolling 
sea — alkali plains, arid as the Sahara desert — through 
mountain gorges and over hilly spurs, and deep defiles, 
and yawning canyons, and placid rivers, and roar- 
ing cataracts, until the same passengers, and the same 
car that left New York, are landed on San Francisco 

JOTTIN(;s r.Y THK WAY. 97 

wharf, within thirty feet of the Pacific, and in one 
short week. Now, look at the other side of the pic- 
ture. I need not tell of the horrors of the " middle 
passage" across the plains — of tlie thousands of lives 
that were lost by fiimine, disease, and the tomaliawk — 
nor of the discomforts and tediousness of a voyage 
around the Terra del Fuego, but 1 romember well, 
as if it were yesterday, the miseries of the way by 
Chagres. I was tlien in my teens, and like other 
young men, hopeful and ardent. I also plunged into 
the mighty torrent of emigration "to the West ;" 
The old Crescent City steamship took out with us 
nine hundred souls of all nationalities, and tongues ; 
there was scarcely standing room, and the " spoon 
fashion" mode of packing had to be adopted, net 
only between decks, but also on the deck and in the 
open air. Grumbling, oaths, and fpiarrels, were the 
order of the day. The deep guttural of the German 
— the sharp, accented tones of the Frenchman — the 
mellifluous notes of the Spaniard, Portugese, and Itali- 
an — the patois of the French Canadian, and the 
Hebrew of the Jew, were at that time Sancrit to me, 
swore they ever so roundly, but I have no doubt 
Pandemonium was a respectable place to the hold 
and deck of this ship. After ten days of sea-sickness, 
and disgusting scenes, a home-sick swain might have 
been seen in the miserable village of Chagres — 
standing, the picture of despair, in the midst of mud 
the most tenacious, and rain the most pitiless, and 
lightning and thundei he most intense — and native 
women, and men, and children, the most nude, and 



barbarou.s, and ugly, and shameless, as ever the sun 
shone on. The natives are a mongrel raceof Indians» 
and Negroes, and Spaniards, and possessing cunning 
and rascality in a superlative degree. The houses of 
these villages are comi)osed of bamboo for walls, and 
rushes for roofs'. Windows and chimneys are almost 
unknown, and dirt the most filtb.y was in abundance 
on all hands. The river Chagres empties into the 
Caribbean Sea at this point, and on a bold rocky 
promontory, overlooking the surrounding country, 
was built several centuries ago, by the Spaniards, a 
formidable fortress called San Lorenzo. Beautiful 
cannon made of silver, and a brass amalgam, still 
overtop the parapets, but some of them, in mere 
wantonness, have been cast over the precipice, and 
are sticking in crevices ot the rocks. The place was 
several times, in its history, taken by the buccaneers, 
whose resort was the Isle of Pines, but now, battle- 
ments, casements, magazines, foss.T, and salient 
angles, are one mass of ruins. 

With ihe exception of small patches of rice and 
sugar-cane, the luxuriant and boundless forest was 
everywhere. The air was loaded with the most de- 
licious perfume from orange groves, pine-apple plants, 
and the laden lemon, and lime trees. I left Canada 
frost-bouud, and snow-covered in April, and in twelve 
days after, was revelling in the bounties of the tropics, 
" where the leaves never fade and the skies seldom 
weep." In spite of the poet's assertion the sky seems 
to find no trouble in procuring the tears. At this 
time there was no railroad, and no river-boats built, 


but canoes of the rudest construction were in abund- 
ance. The stern end was covered with pahn leaves 
or thatched with rushes, and so low was this rude 
cabin that a " six footer," like myself, for conveni- 
ence sake, should have been constructed after the 
model of a telescope, and " thusly" draw myself 
within myselt ; but, as it was, my knees and chin 
were in close relationship, for four long days, during 
which it rained incessantly. The river was much 
swollen, and our propulsive power was three naked 
savages, either pushing with poles, or paddling, or 
towing our canoe. The banks of the river were 
])eautiful, overhung with trees, and climbing plants, 
and blossoming shrubs ; and were it not for the in- 
cessantly discordant notes of paroquets, — the chat- 
ter of monkeys — the screech of birds of prey — the 
sound of the alligator as he glided into the water, 
from some cosy nook, and the thought of boa- 
constrictors and anacondas, all nature would have 
seemed a perfect Paradise. At last we were landed 
at a small village called Gorgona, from which we had 
to travel to Panama, a distance of about twenty j-p.iles, 
over the Andes. Here my troubles began in earnest. 
I had my few things packed into a small trunk, and 
as no mules could be hired, I was obliged to stow away 
my all, into an india-rubber bag, and strap it on the 
back of a negro, to whom I paid $8.00 to carry it to 
Panama. I tied a pair of shoes to the outside of the 
bag, as there was no room inside, and, by the light 
of the moon, I indulged in a bath in the river before 
lying down for the night ; but when I began to dress, 


I missed my boots, and to this day, they arc to me 
non est, I went to the darkey's hut for my shoes, but 
lie was in blissful ignorance of their whereabouts, 
and thus I stood barefooted, where shoemakers were 
curiosities, and no comrade with any shoes, or boots 
to fit. To go into a rage would not mend matters, 
and to swear would not conjure up the lost property ; 
so, when the morning came, I rolled up my '* un- 
mentionables" to my knees, and marched toward the 
Pacific, whistling to keep my courage up. There is a 
small insect called the " jigger," which burrows in the 
•sand on the Isthmu'v, and when it finds its way under 
the toe-nail, or under the skin ot the human foot, lays 
thousands of eggs, Avhich bring forth larva:% and these 
excite such an amount of irritation and inflammation 
as to produce death. Death from this cause is a 
common occurrence among the natives. With these 
facts before my mind's eye, every time I ])lanted 
my "understandings" into the mud I had my hopes 
and fears about these gentry. I was every litde 
while examining with a critic's eye, my pedal ex- 
tremities. If Bolivar's army crossed through those 
valleys, and mountain gorges, and waded through 
those rapid mountain streams, barefooted, then 1 
say they deserved all the booty in a thousand Mon- 
tezumas. The road was strewn with the carcasses of 
mules, and numerous mounds were silent witnesses of 
human mortality, the victims being far from home, 
and kindred. The thick jungle and the boundless 
forests were said to be the secret haunts of native 
robbers, who pounced upon the sick, and weary,. 


robbing and putting them to death, with none to 
defend them, or to enquire as to their f^ite. In the 
valleys was interminable mud, and on tlie mountain 
tops were bare rocks, into which mules and ponies 
had worn deep circular holes, with their feet, and 
these were from eight to twelve inches in depth. 
This attrition of the rocks had been going on for 
centuries. During our first day's journey it rained 
incessantly, and every few hours heaven's artillery 
would roar and bellow up and down the deep gorges, 
vibrating and reverberating until the earth felt as 
tremulous as the air. As night closed in, part of our 
company sought shelter in a solitary ranche ; but we 
were told of a large hotel, kept by an American, about 
two miles farther on, and although weary and foot- 
sore, a comrade and myself pushed for more con- 
genial shelter, but the heavy timber, thick foliage, 
and deep valleys were — in the tropics — soon shrouded 
in almost palpable darkness. It could almost be folt. 
The thick under-wood, on both sides of the narrow 
pathway, was so filled with creeping plants, and the 
cactus of all kinds that it was impossible to lose the 
way. But what with pulling cactus' thorns out of my 
feet, " stubbing " my toes against obtrusive boulders 
— the howls of distant beasts — the panic-stricken 
condition of my comrade, and the hunger that was 
giving our stomachs sharp monitions, we were in no 
amiable mofd. We hid so far carried a bowie- 
knife in one hand, and an Allan's " pepper-box " 
revolver in the other ; but my knife had dozens of 
times come in contact with the rocks, and my re- 


volver had been freely baptized in the flowirg streams, 
until no human force could cut with the one, nor 
could ingenuity explode the other. In daylight their 
appearance might be formidable against a bandit, 
but in Cimmerian darkness they were like the caudal 
extremity of " grumphie," more ornamental, than 
useful. However, our prowess was not tested, for 
about midnight we hailed a camp fire, far down in the 
valley, and when we reached it, we found the " Wash- 
ington " Hotel consisting of a large, patched mainsail 
of a ship stretched between four trees, with a perpen- 
dicular pole hoisted in the centre a la circus. Our 
beds consisted of the damp ground, or the flat side of 
a slab, without beds or bedding. We made a supper 
out of "hard tack" and cold boiled beans, and after 
curling up dog-style, were soon in the land of Mor- 
pheus. After being overtaken by our comrades in 
the morning, we pursued the uneven tenor of our 
way through a country less mountainous and more 
thickly settled. The rivers were occasionally spanned 
by old store bridges, and sometimes the road was 
paved for hundreds of yards with boulders. These 
bridges and highways were said to have been built 
by the Spaniards to enable them to connect, by land 
communication, the two seas. Towards sun-down the 
Pacific burst upon our view,lying as quietly, as a sleeping 
infant, and studded as far as the eye could reach with 
beautiful islands, rejoicing in perpetual verdure. The 
city of Panama lay at our feet, and with its turrets, and 
steeples, and battlements, looked somewhat like civiliz- 
ation, after being a week in the wilderness, among. 


semi-barbarous natives, and even satiate'] vritli the 
grandeur of the lofty Andes. But a^ter passing the 
walls of the city the delusion vanished; we might 
sum up a description of the wliole city by saying that 
walls — once formidable — were crumbling to decay. 
The casements were the habitations of the owls and 
buzzards, — the southern scavengers. The parapets 
were lying in the ditch outside. Splendid cannon 
were dismounted on the ra.m]>arts,niinus carriages, and 
having emblazoned upon them tlie coat of arms of 
imperial Spain. The sentry soldiery were barefooted, 
and rejoiced in shouldering Queen P.ess flintlocks, 
surmounted by bayonets, which, in anti'juc beauty, 
were in keeping with the muskets. The uniform 
seemed to be an " omnium gatheruin " of several 
nationalities, but these Sons of Mars felt the dignity 
of their position, and strutted in concious pride, on 
the crumbling ruins of former greatness, almost like 
Marius amia the ruins of Carthage. The streets of 
Panama are lil:e the streets of all Spanish cities, 
very narrow and dirty. No sanitary regulations <irc 
observed, and the garbage, and filth, which the rains 
do not wash into the bay, are eaten up by thebuzzards, 
which are to be seen in large flocks perched upon the 
house-tops, and we believe the law protects them from 
molestation or injury. The Plaza is a large square 
in the centre of the city, and is used for a market, 
parade ground, etc. There is a very ancient and im- 
posing cathedral facing this square. It is Gothic iu 
design, andean lay claim to architectural beauty. The 
niches are still fdled with respectable images of the 


Apostles, and the Madonna. It is true the intrepid 
Paul, by some misfortune liad lost his arm, and 
Peter had a dilapidated nose, and several of the 
images were badly defaced, but what remained of 
these venerable fothers showed, that when young, the 
artist, or rather sculptor, liad done his duty. A 
truncated steeple, witli roof and sides exposed, re- 
joiced in the possession of a tongueless bell. A 
darkey, sitting straddle of a cross beam, with a bar oi 
iron in his liand, did duty as bellman, and the matin 
and vesper bells were intoned by this sable musician, 
whose zeal exceeded his knowledge of euphony. 

The city was filled to suffocation by people of all 
nationalities, waiting for a passage to the land of gold. 
Some had througli tickets by certain steamers, and 
had been waiting for weeks, and even months, for the 
ship to which they were assigned. We were obliged 
to take a passage in a small French barque, of about 
400 tons burden. It hailed from ]\Iarseilles, and neither 
captain nor crew coukl speak English. The vessel 
was an old fishery vessel, having high bulwarks for- 
ward, and it was said had weathered many a storm on 
the banl^ of Newfoundland. Between decks was 
very low, not exceeding 53.4 feet, and yet in this small 
craft were stow^ed away one hundred and twenty-two 
souls, to be, to do, and to suffer, during a two months' 
voyage on the treacherous deep. We were a motley 
crew, and when assembled on deck, a more grotesque 
picture Hogarth never painted. The jabbering Chil- 
ian, and Peruvian — the swarthy Spaniard, and Portu- 
guese-'the poor German and the everlasting meer- 


schaiim — tne fiery Southerner, with tho bovvie knife in 
his boot, and a Colt's revolver at his waist — rubicund 
John Bulls and lank Scots — shrewd Yankees and 
homesick Canadians — volatile Frenchmen, and mer- 
cenary Jews — lawyers, doctors, teachers, clergymen, 
fanners, mechanics, etc., were all represented on the 
deck of the old ** Ocean " barque. After watering 
at the small island of Taboga, about six miles from 
Panama, we set sail south-west towards the Gallipagoes 
Islands, to catch the trade winds. But scarcely had 
we left landi about one hundred miles astern, than Wv^ 
were becalmed, and for twenty-one days we did not 
make twenty miles headway. It was wearisome to lie 
down night after night, with the sails flapping against 
the mast, and to wake up, morning after morning, to 
find the sea calm as a mill-pond, and our vessel lying 

'' Like a painted ship 
Upon a painted ocean." 

After a time intermittent breezes permitted us to 
creep along southerly until the trade winds were 
reached off the coast of Peru. It is true tliese winds 
were blowing from the north-west, but by long tacks 
progress was made towards our goal. We crossed 
the line by a few degrees to the south, and, as usual, 
old Neptune paid us a visit. He shaved a few of the 
passengers, with a rusty hoop, not failing to insure 
these blind-folded victims, a cold douche in a deep 
meat tub. It was a source of mirth to all but the 
unfortunate recipients of these high honors from the 
god of the sea. The fourth of July was celebrated 


on board by the usual spe<jch making, singing of 
patriotic songs, denunciations of Great Britain, and 
the red flag, which " was a nt emblem of tyranny and 
oppression." The captain sang in good style the Mar- 
seillaise Hymn, in hDnour of the French Hepublic, 
and put upon one of the two ladies, on board, a red 
night-cap, to personify the goddess of Liberty. He also 
dealt out a copious supply of brandy, and, as might 
be expected, the half-starved crowd got hilarious, and 
some became" gloriously drunk."' As evening drew on, 
the noise from a sort of maudlin revelry was indescrib- 
able. The shouts and yells — the muttering and drivel- 
ling idiocy of the sot — the obscene song and jest in 
half a dozen languages — the oaths of those who were 
sufficiently intoxicate to be madmen, and the quarrels, 
about trifles, of those who had been boon compan- 
ions, were disgusting and alarming. Two of the 
sailors had quarrelled over a game of dice, and in 
fury they vainly attempted to throw one another 
overboard. A German had insulted a little Vermon- 
ter, and was chased up stairs and down stairs — fore 
and aft — by him, armed with a huge knife. The Ger- 
man at last took shelter in the cabin. An Alabam- 
ian quarrelled with a John Bull about John Calhoun, 
and on the Slavery question, and were it not for the 
interposition of friends, blood would have been spilled. 
A Jew had his extraction cast in his teeth, by an Hi- 
bernian, and although after a time both parties were 
apparently reconciled, yet, strange to say, after sealing 
their bonds of amity, with free libations from the 
bottle, next morning the Irishman was in the jaws of 


death, and the day following he was consigned to 
the deep. Wliispers of foul play where heard, and 
the Jew was henceforth ostracized, which, however 
he bore with perfect nonchalance and defiance. 
Imagine such a motley crowd on a small vessel, over 
a thousand miles from land, and holding such high re- 
velry during the honrs of darkness, with no lights to be 
seen except the flickering lamp suspended over the 
compass ; and a lunatic asylum would be a Paradise 
to it. The captain tried to lay the devil he had 
raised, but his efforts were in vain, for the more he 
attempted to exercise authority, the more uproarious 
the revellers became, including even the sailors ; and 
had a squall visited us any time during that long 
night, it is doubtful if sufficient, sober sailors could 
have been secured, to reef a sail, or pull a rope. I did 
not feel safe between decks, and so sought an empty 
place on the quarter deck, near the helmsman, where 
I caught " cat naps " of sleep, until at gray dawn the 
cry of fire echoed through the ship, and paralyzed for 
a time every man who heard it. The confusion of the 
previous evening was intensified tenfold, and as I cast 
my eyes forward I perceived the galley was in flames. 
The cooking apparatus was of the most primitive kind 
and improvised at Panama. Two large tin boilers 
were inserted into a brick structure, with arches under- 
neath. A crack had been made in the bottom of these 
arches in some way, and the fire had communica'ed 
with the deck, and from there had spread to the 
wooden part of the cook-house. The sober men on 
board went to work, and with axes tore down and com- 


mitted to the deep the Imrniii;^ fragments, and 
thus extinguished the flames. In the midst of the up- 
roar, and confusion, there were numbers who had 
f^illen into such a lethargy from beastly intoxication, 
that no trampling upon, or hauling by the legs, or re- 
minders from clenched fists, in the ribs, elicited more 
than a grunt, or a half uttered oath, and who — if the 
fire had got the mastery — would have perished, with- 
out waking from their sleep. This misfortune to the 
** caboose " put an end to culinary operations, and 
although our provisions, so far, had consisted of fat 
pork, beans, biscuit and rice, half cooked, yet these 
had " smelt " fire, but, viis>'rable diciu ! we were 
forced to eat raw pork. Where were the trichince 
spirales ? What a feast these burrowers would have 
had in the muscles of such a woe begone company ! 
A few nights afterwards, while the drowsy watch was 
enjoying quiet snoozes, a scpall rose suddenly, and 
while all their efforts were employed in reefing sails, 
the fore and main hatches" were left open — several 
heavy seas were shipped, which went bowling down 
into the hold among the provisions, «S<:c. This reduced 
our fare to raw pork, and mouldy, and wormy biscuit. 
About meal time we might be seen employed in the 
delightful occupation of picking to pieces the green 
" hard tack," and culling out carefully, worms from 
the pulpy mass. Dyspepsia at these times was un- 
known, and these " titbits " were relished beyond all 
expectation. The quality was not objected to, but 
the quantity had become deficient. The continued 
.theme was about something good to eat. Farmers 


would discuss with watering mouths, all the bounties 
of the dairy, and the home kitchen, and often longed 
for a good drink, from the richness of the *' swill pail." 
The fat Dutchman began to thin in flesh, and the raw 
bones were merging fast towards transparency. My 
day-dreams were of home, and its plentiful larder, 
and my night visions were made up of " castles in 
the air," composed of pies, cakes, custards, beef, 
potatoes, «S:c. O for a '* square meal !" O for the 
hot biscuits, fresh butter, strawberries and cream, 
plum pudding, and ham and eggs, of distant and wel- 
come boards ! Ye gods what is your ambrosia or 
nectar in comparison to these substantials to starving 
men ! Well, these miseries had an end, and after 
doing penance for a life-time by involuntary abstemi- 
ousness, we hailed land on the third of August, after 
being sixty-three days on the Pacific, and sixty days 
without seeing land or even a solitary vessel 

I left home on the 25th of April, 1850, and on the 
4th of August was landed on the sands of San Fran- 
cisco. We were a seedy looking crowd, but misery 
is said to like company, and we congratulated our- 
selves in being no worse than our neighbours, for 
hundreds were landing daily in as miserable a plight 
as ourselves. Our ship, in fact, was a representative 
one, and thousands of immigrants had much more 
doleful tales to tell than those I have endeavoured to 
sketch. 'J^he miseries of the overland route — the hor- 
rors of doubling the stormy cape in wretched hulks, 
which the cupidity of their owners sent to that far 
distant land from the eastern ports of the United 


'States, and from all the maritime cities of Clui.stendom, 
laden with human freight, from tender youth to dc- 
crepid old age — the untold wretchedness of those 
who were deluded by speculators to cross the con- 
tinent through Mexico, such as those who went under 
the leadership of that Trince of scoundrels, Col. 
French, would require volumes to adeijuately portray 
it, and such an exodus never took place before, since 
the Israelites left Egypt. The bay of San Francisco, 
by the way, one of the finest on the Pacific coast, if we 
except that of Acapulco, was, at the time I i efer to, 
studded with the ships of all nations. The sea of masts 
reminded one of a Canadian pinery, which had been 
robbed of its foliage. Three-fourths of these ships 
were forsaken, and at that time it was estimated that 
nearly two thousand vessels, of all sizes, were lying 
in the harbour. The crew of our ship liad desertjd 
the first night after casting anchor, with the exception 
of the cook, and cabin boy, and nearly a year after- 
wards the ship was said to be still lying at anchor. 
These vessels looked like '' pliantom ships " with no 
living soul aboard. The starved rats were running 
riot in the rigging, and the sea-gulls, and other marine 
birds could be seen perching on the yards. A large 
vessel had been driven ashore near the city, and two 
doors were cut into the bows. It was fitted up into a 
boarding house, and designated " Noah's Ark." 

The city of San Francisco (called after Sir Francis 
Drake) was at this time only a small place in com- 
parison to what it is now. The Spanish town was a 
few small houses made of unburnt brick, and the re- 


maindcr of the pince was conij)o.scd of temporary 
wooden buildings, and an army of tents perched on 
the sand hills in the rear of the town. A Plaza was 
in the centre, round which were built hotels, grog- 
geries, and gambling saloons. Here was congregated 
the scum of all nations, in representation. After 
night-flill bands of music played operatic airs to the 
masses that thronged these houses. Mexican women 
of easy virtue, with segarettes in their mouths, but 
possessed of considerable beauty, sat at the monte 
tables, with gold dust or gold coin before them, and 
by winning smiles and allurements, such as a Syren 
might employ, lured many silly moths to the bright 
blaze, and left them with singed wings. All the arts 
of such a profession were employed to victimize the 
returning miner, and to entice him to these dens 
The usual decoys were sent out — some dressed in 
the rough costume of a miner — others with solemn 
countenances, fine bl.ick clothes, unexceptional white 
neckties, and smooth and mellow tongues — and others 
like accomplished gentlemen, whose appearance dis- 
armed suspicion, and with plenty of money, which 
they spent freely — such fished tor a specific class of 
victims. The first of these classes ingratiated them- 
selves into the affections, and confidence, of their 
fellow miners, and were to be found at the beach and 
piers, where river boats brought down loads ot miners 
from the interior. The genteel cla<?ses frequented 
those steamers, and ships, which brought their living 
freight from all parts of the world. They would 
tender advice and give gratuitous council to those 


*• grecii " ones who had not yet cut tlicir wisdom 
teeth, and who were about " to see the elephant.'' 
Murders were of daily occurrence, but no law con- 
victed, and no oflicers executed. Lawlessness ran riot, 
and villains of the deepest dye filled nearly all the 
municipal oflices. To such an extent was brutality, 
robbery, and murder winked at, that honest men at 
last banded themselves together for mutual protec- 
tion, and took the law into their own hands. For a 
short time a reign of terror ensued, and it was well- 
doers who were affrighted ; but after a number of 
scoundrels were lynched, by the Vigilance Committee, 
their comrades in crime began to dread this inipcrium 
in imperii), and, treading softly, began to skulk out of 
broad daylight into the dark recesses of the dens of 
infamy ; for these committees, like those who recently 
hung the Pero gang in Illinois, or like the Carbineri 
of Italy, were unknown to these desperadoes. We 
well remember one of those executions in Sacramento. 
The 'ty in 1850 was only a collection of temporary 
buildin^^s, impervious to robbers and burglars. There 
was no building in the whole city sufiiciently substan- 
tial to serve the purposes of a prison. An old hulk 
was towed up from Benecia and anchored in the 
middle of the Sacramento river, and here criminals 
were confined. For months, most daring robberies 
and murders had been committed, not only in the 
city, but in the surrounding country ; and although 
time after time the guilty parties were caught and 
and their crime proven, yet they managed to escape, 
on account ot the connivance of the authorities. The 


Vigilance Committee at last took the matter in hand. 
The ringleader of a lawless band, if I remember 
rightly, known by the name of Robinson, had been 
tried by the city authorities and ac(iuitted. To avoid 
popular indignation, he was re-committed to the 
hulk ; but at the hour of midnight the hulk was sur- 
rounded, the jailers pinioned, and the prisoner landed 
on the levee, under a guard of several hundreds of 
determined men. He was taken to a place called, at 
that time, the horse market, in which grew a scrubby 
oak tree. A cart was used for a platform, and a pro- 
jecting branch for the suspension of the fatal noose. 
By this time thousands of people were congregated. 
Tar barrels were set on fire, and as these cast a 
ruddy glow over the upturned faces of the multitude, 
as it surged to and Iro, with the dark outline of the 
doomed man, coming out in boldness, with droop- 
ing head, and pinioned arms, standing on the cart, 
and the spectral appearance of his executioners 
moving to and fro with determined gait and action, 
arid the voices of the vast throng at one time uproar- 
ious, and at another dying away into a death-like sil- 
ence, the scene was sufticient to chill to the marrow 
any sensitive umian being. " Hang tlie rascal at 
once," cry some, "shoot him," cry others. " Give 
him a chance to speak," cry out a third group. 
" Don't be all night about it," cries out an impatient 
crowd. These and such like exclamations came up 
intermittently from this volcano of passion, like red 
hot lava, spewing over the edge of the serrated moun- 
tain. At last the victim raised his head, and with 



uplifted hands beseechingly signified his desire for 
silence. He acknowledged all that had been charged 
against him to be true, but in extenuation pleaded his 
extreme youth, (nineteen years). He was only the 
instrument used by others to commit their crimes. He 
was the only son of a widowed mother, who warned 
him of his fate if he continued in evil-doing, and 
became the companion of evil associates. She was in 
England, and although he had been deaf to the 
entreaties of others, who were his victims, yet he 
sent her money to support her. She would not 
know of his tragic end, or of his sad career in crime, 
un*il the newspapers told the tale. His masters in 
crime were, many of them, in public offices, and 
among others he named the mayor ot the city. This 
villain was standing in the crowd, and no doubt 
trembled where he stood, as this confession was being 
made. The appeal made strong men weep, and was 
sufficiently pathetic to soften the most obdurate, but 
an example had to be made, and this poor fellow 
must be the first to appease popular indignation. The 
noose was adjusted — the cart was pulled away from 
under his feet — a heavy thud was heard — the convul- 
sive body, quivering in every limb, and being most 
horribly contorted in every musple of the uncovered 
face, and eyes protruding as if about to leap from 
their sockets, whirled about in circles andsemi-circies, 
until vitality gave way to the gravitation of useless 
clay, and by the expiring embers of watch-fires a 
corpse was seen swinging hither and thither in the 
night breeze, with not a solitary friend to watch, in 


aiJection the gyrating body. We need scarcely add 
that the mayor and others accused by this murderer 
were searched for, but the)- had ''fled from the wrath 
to come." It is said that the Englishman's house is 
his castle, but in this land of gold every man was a 
walking fort of bristling munitions of war, and every 
person was on the qui vivCy whether at work, or repos- 
ing from the labours of the day. Relationship and 
affection seemed to be forgotten in the struggle for 
gold. The motto of everyone seemed to be " Deil 
take the hinmost." 

It is not my intention to enter into details as 
to the resources, and climate, and industries of 
California, at the time I refer to. The auriferoun 
deposits were everywhere — in the beds of rivers — on 
the bars composed of sand, gravel, and boulders, 
cast up or deposited by the swollen streams ; nor 
need I describe the gold sweating quartz in its 
stratified croppings out ot the slate formation — of 
the deep diggings in the beds of ancient rivers, far 
away from the recert river beds, and even penetrating 
the bases of mountains, and of the volanic agency 
of the primal ages, seen ever}'where, not only in the 
irregular and grotesque appearance of the gold, but 
also in the physical changes, and transformations, 
not only of the aqueous, but also of some igneous 
rocks. Nor is it our intention to dilate on those 
isothermal changes continually brought about by the 
sea-breezes by day, and the chilling night winds from 
the snow-clad mountains, — nor of the reason why 
flowers bloom in January.and crops ripen in April,in a 



country only a few degrees of latitude south of 
Toronto. Books might be written on these themes^ 
and also on the different implements, and machines 
used for separating the gold from th^ dross — from 
the pick and battered tin-pan — the old-fashioned 
rocker, with its cross bars, up-right handle, iron sieve, 
and its twin, the long-handled dipper — from the 
quick-silver machine, with its many compartments, 
hose, and pumps, to the "long Tom" or the more 
powerful hydraulic agency, that by means of the active 
force of running water, can literally level mountains, 
and wash the precious metal from the deepest bowels 
of the earth, or the quartz machine that crushes to 
the fineness of flour the hard rock, and by steam, 
and fire makes the reluctant gold come forth, from it.'i 
rocky sepulchre. All these appliances are wonders, 
and curiosities in themselves, to those who have never 
been initiated into their mysteries. The greatest 
difficulty I had to encounter in the mines, after pro- 
curing food to eat, was to cook it. The meat was 
burned to a crisp. The coffee was weak as an homoeo- 
pathic dose, or strong as a good old fashioned dose of 
senna. The bread was made from some dough, and 
carbonate of soda, but I did not know the principle 
of "rising" bread, and after it had been kneaded, 
so that there were not more than forty dry lumps in 
the loaf, I applied heat vigorously to the top and 
bottom of an old bake kettle, and afterwards found a 
shrivelled up piece of composition, which was out- 
side a blackened crisp, and inside so doughy that 
if chewed by anyone rejoicing in loose grinders, the 


adhesive quality of my bread would be warranted to 
produce complete and satisfactory extraction. Ex- 
perience, and the assistance of an old sea captain 
made me a tolerable baker. The trowsers of miners 
often needed patches on the knees, and mine were no 
exception to the general rule ; but, never being called 
on in Canada to exert my skill in that way, I failed 
to remember whether the patch ought to be placed 
outside or inside, but I attempted the former with a 
piece of an old flour bag, the mterstices of which were 
filled with hardened flour. Forgetting to fasten on 
the four corners temporarily, and thus keep it /;/ sitii.^ I 
sewed away "on the loose " until I found, when half 
done, that I had worked it so much to one side as to 
nearly miss the round edvjes of " the trousorial aper- 
ture ;" but practice makes perfect, and although this 
patch, after being securely sewed, and well wetted in 
-the American river, by means of the flour, stuck closer " 
than a brother, yet it did uncommonly well, and 
gave me courage to tailor other essential garments of 
a miner's outfit. Like other mortals we had our 
troubles, and our enjoyments, but on the whole the 
life of the gold hunter was enjoyable. The lawyer* 
it is true, had to leave his gown, and black bag behind 
— the doctor torgot his scalpel, lances, blisters, and 
blue pills, — the merchant took no interest in the rise 
and fall of cottons, or silks, and the dandy with 
^* plug "hat, kid gloves, and unexceptional necktie, 
was at first the butt of ridicule, and afterwards the 
object of pity. I was one morning somewhat 
amused with a gentleman of this kind, who came to 


make his fortune by digging. His clothes were of 
the latest fashion, and his boots well brushed, and 
red topped. Theblack kids were a perfect fit, and 
a chain of dazzling yellow hung from his fob. His 
pick, and shovel, and "prosj^ecting" pan were elegant 
in structure, and " bran " new. He first took a 
shovel full of sand from the edge of a sand-bank, 
where mica shone resplendently. Carrying this 
daintly down to the river he tried it, and found that 
" all is not gold that glitters." He next filled his pan- 
from a heap of "tailings," which had already been run 
through our quicksilver machine. He walked with 
this refuse earth down to the brink of the river, but 
as he neared the water, he found his footing treacher- 
ous, and suddenly disappeared up to his neck in the 
river. Roars, of laughter greeted him as he crawled 
out from his morning's bath, leaving his tools to be 
found, it may be, by some geologist in future ages, 
and our " iron age " determined thereby ; as for the 
dripping dandy he " vamosed " to parts unknown^ 
That essential ornament and glory of society — a 
woman — was never seen by us except once, and the 
boys declared that she left an old bonnet behind, 
which they affixed to a pole, and — if they did not 
bow down and worship — danced around it all night, 
in perfect ecstacy. 'D.ey thought it was, as if an- 
angel had left a pinion of its wing behind. The 
scenery around where we camped was beautiful, 
especially in winter, when thousands of variegated 
flowers sent forth their sweetness and dazzled the eye 
by their gorgeousness. What a contrast to our ice- 


bound shore ! yet our winters, though cold, are brac- 
ing, and enjoyable, when we hear the "tintinnabulation 
of the bells," and feel the hoary north wind coming in 
his strength. That climate has its beauties, this one 
its usefulness and that too, in spite of the long dreary 
hours of winter. 

I stood, one beautiful Sabbath morning, on one of 
the peaks of the Sierra Nevada, mountains. It was in 
the month of August, 1851. Far to the westward 
stretched the Sacramento plains, and the river mean- 
dering coyly along, and seeming like a silver thread 
on a back-ground of green, whose undulating sur- 
face eemed like the ocean swell. To the northward, 
and eastward, rose in succession, one after another, 
snowy peaks, crystalized by nature's matchless chemist, 
— being the accumulations of ages, in His wonder- 
ful laboratory. I was, as yet, at my elevation, only in 
the dim, grey dawn ; but these rugged pinnacles 
were already bathed in a glorious light. Here, fairy, 
like, the solar rays danced in deepest green — there 
they reflected the dark blue of the ocean — here were 
all the tints of the rainbow — there was whiteness 
itself intensified. Farther up, the mountains appear- 
ed as if enveloped in one vast conflagration. The 
red glow, like flames, could be seen with fiery tongues 
licking up crags of adamant, and at the summit the 
pure white snow, and glittering ice, were being appar- 
ently naoulded, by the shooting pencils of light, into 
the most fantastic shapes. Towers and bulwarks, 
walls and parapets, domes and minarets, mosques 
and monuments, could be seen for a moment, but the 
next glance at its dazzling splendour was. 


" I^ike the snowfall in the river, 

A moment white, then melts forever." 

The turning of a Kaleidoscope produced no greater 
transformation of colours, than did the sudden changes 
of light, before the radiating morning light. I had 
vainly imagined tliat no white man had ever scaled 
the heights where I then stood, but what was my 
surprise, when turning from gazing on such incompar- 
able grandeur, and looking on the green-sward beneath 
my feet, to find that others had scaled the giddy cliflFs 
before me. Not ten yards from where I stood was a 
grave — not that of an Indian — but the last resting- 
place of one of our Circassian race. 'J here was the 
mound, with a rude head-stone of slate, and the name 
which had been scratched upon it, nearly eflaced. 
What a lonely death-bed ! Who were his pall-bear- 
ers ? Did he die *' unwept, unhonored and unsung ?" 
Did any one whisper into his ear aflfection's latest 
tribute, or the conforting words of Inspiration ? 
What brought him up to the top of this mount to 
die ? Had he seen the glories of a rising sun on the 
distant mountain tops and did they symbolize to him 
the gates and streets and walls of the New Jerusalem? 
Were his last thoughts those which cheer many in the 
(jark hour — mother, home and Heaven ? I sat with 
wet eyes and in almost unconscious reverie near this 
isolated grave-yard, and unburdened my teelings in 
the following rhyme, when about to leave for ever. 

This simple monument of death, 
Far, far, away from haunts of men, 


Proclaims that mortals' fleeting breath, 
Exhales on mountain, lake or plain. 

Can no one tell whom thou has been ? 
Nor miss thee on a distant hearth ? 
Have wild flowers clothed thy grave so green, 
Yet none remember thee on earth ? 

Perhaps the tearless stranger stood, 
To see the last convulsive throe ; 
And then with hand and heart as rude, 
Consigned him to the dust below. 

Or Indian fierce with fiendish smile, 
Up-raised his hand, and laid him low, 
Then savage-like he seized the spoil. 
And heeded not the tale of woe. 

Conflicting waniors may stain 
With gore the gieen sod o'er his head, 
Exulting yells may fill the plain — 
Insatiate rapine rob the dead. 

Rude storms may shake Nevada's top. 
And lightnings flash in vales below, 
Earthquakes may rend the granite rock, 
Hid far beneath eternal snow. 

But 'tis no matter, he will lie. 
As quietly in that mountain bed. 
Where sturdy pines a requiem sigh, 
As if among his kindred dead. 

The mountains are covered far up with dwarf 
•oaks, and pines. On the coast range of mountains, and 
between them, and the sea is a peculiar wood, called 
from its colour, redwood. In its general appearance 


it closely resembles cedar. It is durable and UglUv 
and grows not only to an immense size, but also to a 
fabulous height. It is said often to be in length 300 
feet. It is generally found growing in clumps, as if 
the tree were gregarious. During the winter, there 
are often months of rain, not continuously, but inter- 
mittently, the sun like a shy maiden often slyly show- 
ing its face, and as often hiding it behind the clouds, 
keeping the labourer, like a lover, between hopes, 
and fears. During the summer months there is no rain, 
and no dew, and although the heavens seem iron, and 
the earth brass, yet, the valleys do not lose their ver- 
dure, nor even the ever-green oaks their summer garb, 
yet the hills looked parched, and were it not for a 
slender grass that grows under difficulties, the rising 
ground would appear very barren indeed. Cattle and 
horses prefer this pin grass, to grain, and fatten well on 
its nutritious fibres, and, what is remarkable about it 
is, that the first showers in autumn kill it. It has 
fulfilled its destiny, by the law of compensation, and 
gives way to more luxuriant foliage, but its seeds have 
been sown to produce, from the vital germ, the neces- 
sary grasses for the ensuing year. The birds in this 
country never migrate from these semi-tropics. The 
groves are made vocal all the year round, with the 
notes of the curlew, the piping quail, the coquettish 
robin, and the plaintive cooing of the mourning 
doves. The ubiquitous blackbird revels in fields of 
wild oats, or native rice, and refuses to expatriate him- 
self, sensible bird that he is, from the extensive plains 
to the south of the mines, especially the Yulare plains. 


and those on the banks of the San Joaquin. Mus- 
tang ponies roamed at large over almost boundless 
plains. Here they have been indisputed masters 
for centuries. When they stampede they form into 
lines, and are as resistless as the charge of a squadron- 
of cavalry. 

" With flowing tail, and flying mane, 
With nostrils never stretched by pain, 
Mouths bloodless to the bit or rein ; 
And feet that iron never shod ; 
And flanks unscarred by spur or rod, 
A thousand horses — the wild, the free — 
Like waves that follow o'er the sea — 
Came thickly thundering on." 

Now^ I am told where wild beasts, or desolatiorv 
reigned, are teeming thousands tilling the soil ; where 
the wild horse, and the grizzly bear, and cayote wolf, 
revelled in the luxuries of nature's bountiful table,, 
the inexorable march of civilization has caused them 
to suddenly forsake their old haunts, and retire to 
mountain fastnesses, far irom the busy haunts ot men ; 
where the rude wooden plough, the clumsy cart, and 
adobe huts, and wigwams were the order of the day, 
now crash through the virgin soil, the glittering plough- 
share of New England — now roll over the plains, 
and mountains, the symmetrical and iron girt wheels, 
and to the right and left are seen the cosy dwellings 
of an affluent, tasteful, and contented yeomanry. 
The thrashing machines, reapers, and mowers, and' 
manufactories, resound through the length and breadth 
of this favoured land, where the clang of the shoveli 


and the pick, swung by miners's brawny arms, were tho 
only sound of human industry, and where theii shining 
tents showed them to be only the i)ilgrims of a day. 
Gold has often been the curse of individuals, and of 
nations, but California, Australia, and British Columbia, 
by the impetus given to immigration thither, on 
account ot these auriferous deposits have become 
wealthy, and densely settled countries, which might 
have remained for many long years in primal gran- ' 
deur, in partial obscurity, and in comparative in- 
eignificance. All hail ! ever resistless Anglo-Saxon ! 


1'r was said by Cxsar " that he couM conquer 
nations, but he could not conquer tongues.'' 
This statement was true, as it regarded the language 
of the Ancient Britons. Our brave forefathers des- 
pised the Koman Conquerors, and spurned their 
classic language. The British chiefs sent their sons 
to Gaul, to be instructed by the orators, and law- 
givers among the Teutons. Tacitus tells us " that 
the Britons were instructed by wise Gauls, although en- 
couraged to study Latin by the Conquerors ;" but 
Juvenal, in one of his satires, declares that they re- 
fused to do so. After a time, however, the Latin was 
used as an auxiliary to the Gothic, and this innova- 
tion was adopted in succession by the Saxons, Nor- 
mans, French, and Ancient Greeks. The sum total 
of this influx of words, idioms, and expressions, in- 
cluding the ancient Gothic, is the English language. 
No Briton, or British American, can, in the present 
day, lay claim to being an accomplished English 
scholar, who does not understand thoroughly his 
mother tongue, and,to some extent, the different roots 
from whence it sprung. The English language is now 
spoken in all the habitable globe, and is spreading 
rapidly among nationalities, that owe no allegiance 
to the British crown, but who feel the mighty in- 


fluence of that power extending " from sea to sea — 
from the rising to the setting sun, and from the river 
to the ends of the earth." We wili endeavour briefly 
to show how much of our language is Anglo-Saxon, 
and to how great an extent its beauty and force de- 
pend upon the primary elements of the language. 
We have not space to notice those classes of words 
which have sprung trom the Anglo Saxon, but have 
passed through numerous mutations, until their 
orginality is to a great extent lost, but we will notice 
those P'.nglish words only,Mrhich are themselves Saxon, 
pure and simple, or are immediately derived from 
the Anglo-Saxon. Tliose foreign words which enter 
into the formation of our language, add very much to 
its beauty, bat, as yet, they do not hold a foremost 
place, They are the frescoes, capitals, cornices 
and general decorations of the majestic temple, but 
the substratum, walls, and pillars, are the staple 
products of native ingenuity, wants, and industry. 

Sir James Mcintosh tells us that he has analyzed a 
number of Englisli passages, from the Bible, and 
standard authors, and he has found in five verses 
from denesis, containing 130 words, only five, not 
Saxon. In so many verses out of St. John, containing 
74 words, there were only two words, not Saxon. 
In a passage from Shakspeare, containing 81 words, 
there were only thirteen words, not Saxon. In a 
passage from Milton containing 90 words, only 16, 
were not Saxon ; also from Cowley 76 words, not 
Saxon ten; from Thomson's Seasons 78 words, not 
Saxon 14; from Addison, 79 words, not Saxo 


from Spenser 72 words, not Saxon 14; from Locke 
94 words, not Saxon 9 ; from Hume loi, not Saxon 
38 ; from (Gibbon 80, not Saxon 3 r ; and from 
Johnson 87, not Saxon 21 wo; ds. The average 
would be in such passages as tl\ose quoted about 
3i-4oths Anglo-Saxon. But the number of words 
may be said to be no fair criterion of the influence 
of such words in a language, for a few words may , 
have a potency, not at all commensurate with their 
plurality. To this we reply, in the Jirit/ place, that the 
skeleton of our language is Saxon. It is the frame- 
work, which gives stability to the structure, although 
foreign words may add to its grace and beauty. In 
the second place, the English Grammar is almost ex- 
clusively occupied with Anglo-Saxon words, not only 
in the roots, but also in the inflections and auxiliaries. 
The cases of nouns are. determined by particles, in- 
stead of being noted, as in the Latin, Greek and 
Hebrew, by the terminations of the words. It is the 
same in the coiriparison of adjectives, for er and est 
are Saxon. Many adverbs end in the Saxon /y. The 
articles, and personal pronouns, including the relative 
and interrogative pronouns', also the most of the 
irregular verbs, and conjunctions, are all, with few 
exceptions, Anglo-Saxon. 

The objects of perception are principally named by 
Anglo-Saxon words, such as sun, moon, stars, sky, water, 
sea, dc, and although the very nice and affected 
orator may talk of " vigorous Sol or " argentine 
Luna," or " the azure zenith," or the " effulgent con- 
stellation," yet the mother tongue excels, if not in 


euphony, at least in force, pointedness and precision,, 
in all that appertains to the external world, or to the 
varied wants of humanity. 

Three of the elements are named in Anglo-Saxon 
phrases, viz., earth, fire, water ; also, three out of the 
four seasons are of the same parentage, that is, spring, 
summer and wintef. The same may be said of all the 
divisions of time, such as day, night, morning, even- 
ing, twilight, noon, mid-day, mid-night, sunrise, sunset, 
including all the mysterious, beautiful and grand in 
universal, prodigal, and exuberant nature, as light, 
heat, cold, frost, rain, snovv, hail, sleet, tnunder, 
lightning, sea, hill, dale, wood, stream, &c., which are 
Saxon. Why need we enumerate all the expressive 
and terse words of our ancestral language ? Those 
words which the poet loves to use — which the orator 
trusts to, for forcible expressions — which the historian 
lays under tribute with the greatest freedom, and which 
as the terms of every-day life, are derived from the 
mother tongue. What words more expressive of the 
strongest emotions, of the tenderest feeling, or of the 
more abiding sensations, than those of father, mother, 
husband, ii'ife, brother, sister, son, dan<jhter, child, home, 
kindred, friends, love, hope, fear, sorrow, shame, tear, 
smile, blush, laugh, weep, siyh, tjroan 1 7 he lullaby over 
our cradle-bed — the first, taint, stutteiing accents, at a 
mother's knee— the simple and confiding prayers of 
happy childhood — the volubility of the tongue of 
boyhood, and girlhood, in the sportive games of the 
playground — the earnest accents of the alternately- 
hoping and despairing lover, and the last, sad utterance 



of the dying, are generally spoken in unsophisticated 
Anglo-Saxon. Does a writer or a speaker wish to 
teach lessons of wisdom, or indulge in witty sayings, 
in sober proverbs, or in pungent irony, invective,satire, 
liumor, or pleasantry ? Then to be effective he 
must use the mother tongue in its many torms. Does 
he wish to pour vials of wrath, in words, upon the 
heads of his enemies ? He does not cull out classic 
terms for his purpose, for they are the quintessence 
of politeness, but he falls back upon the " rough and 
ready " terms of every day life. 

The vocabulary of abuse is rather voluminous in 
our tongue, and if we wish to be pointed and un- 
mistakeably expressive, and impressive, we are 
generally very idiomatic,and vernacular,in oui expres- 
sions- Were we to scold in a classic language there 
would be less quarrelling, fewer duels, a small list on 
the docket of cases of assault, and foul libel, and many- 
tongued, and malicious slander, would become almost 
as mythical,as an ancient oracle. The verbal quarrels 
of a Greek, or a Roman, were like a gentle breeze, in 
comparison to a tornado, as regards his language, 
and ours. Is not our energetic Saxon to blame ? 
The hoary worthies of other days have left behind 
literary monuments of ill nature, but their languages 
are capable of meaning many bitter things, by a sort 
of insinuation, and sly interpretation, which the stern 
and outspoken English seems to scorn. What would 
our political writers, and such as dip their pens in gall, 
and wormwood, do, without a copious supply of 
vituperative words, which, like Canada thistles are 



not only indigenous, thrilty, and aggressive, but alsa 
difficult of extirpation ? How emphatic are such 
words as sciim'M^y, scum, filth, o^scourhigs, dregs, 
dirt, mean, loathsome, trash, dc. 

It is to be observed, also, that while classic terms 
are used in a generic sense, and abstractly, yet special 
terms, indicating particular objects, qualities, and 
modes of action, are either Saxon, or derivatives from 
it ; for example, the movements of the body, such at 
jump, twist, hop, ship, are Saxon ; but move is Latin, 
colour is Latin, but the different colours are Saxon. 
Crime is Latin, but robbery, th^ft, murder, are Saxon. 
Organ is Greek, and member is Latin ; but all the 
organs of sense, including our limbs, are Saxon. 
Atiivial is Latin, but vian, cow, sheep, calf, cat, dog^ 
&c., are Saxon. Number is both French, and Latin, 
but the cardinal and ordinal terms, up to one million, 
are Anglo-Saxon. Scientific terms are now generally 
either classic, pure and simple, or Anglicized, or form 
a union with the Saxon, in compound words. This 
wedding of the past, and present, is often very un. 
couth. The German language is much more con- 
servative than ours, and, even in the arts, and 
sciences, it expresses nearly all technical terms in 
those words which are " to the manor born." 

The invaders are repelled, and it is a question with 
us, whethei the foreign lan£;uages, which have added 
so many words, and made such structural changes, 
have improved greatly the parent tongue. Philoso- 
phers, are ofteii hobby-ridden mortals, and dogmati- 
cally furnish us a nomenclature, that is more pedantic 


than useful, and which could be as forcibly, and cor- 
rectly formed from home productions, as from the 
arbitrary terms of a foreign people. This is an inva- 
sion, which has not only been successful, but promises 
to continue its inroads, to the final and complete 
overthrow of the natives. TJt^ Anglo-Saxon was not 
only copious in words, in rf.L >n to the wants of 
those who used it, but poi^sessed in its system of 
inflections,and terminal syllables, and in the ease with 
which it formed new compounds, from its then homo- 
geneous elements, and power of expansion and self- 
development, but fully equal to all the demands of ad- 
vanced knowledge, and science, and in losing its 
inflection and terminations, it has lost, to a great 
degree, its plastic power ot moulding its elements 
into new combinations. We must not be understood, 
as wishing to depreciate altogether, the use of foreign 
words, for they have their benefits, but we should not 
be prepared, for the sake of pedantry,or novelty, to in- 
troduce terms, which arc neither needful, nor useful, 
and would, i( passing current extirpate English words 
sufficiently expressive and pointed. The philosophers 
of this century are running into this extreme. Sir 
William Hamilton, Cousin and Morell,in metaphysics, 
Lyell, and Agassiz in geology, and others whose 
names are well known, seem to ride a hobby, in 
newly coined words, of classical extraction, so that 
novices would need a glossary to interpret, not only 
new terms, but old ones, to which they often attach 
new meanings in almost every chapter, we are well 
aware that in science it is oftenjdifficultjo procure a 


Saxon, Norman,or English word,that can always com- 
municate that fine shade of meaning necessary, especi- 
ally in the exact sciences, and metaphysics, and often 
an Anglicized, Latin, or Greek word will meet the 
case. Take, for example, the words '* induction " 
and " deduction " " talent " and "genius " " science'* 
and "art" "human" and "humane" "judg- 
ment" and " understanding." Then if we take the 
words " apt" and "fit," although at first glance they 
seem to have the same significance, yet the former 
is a Latin derivative, and the latter Saxon. The first 
has an active sense, and the latter is passive, in its 
meaning. In Hamlet we have "hands apt, drugs fit,*' 
and then Wordsworth says — 

" Our hearts more a/>t to sympathize 
With heaven, our souls more^^ for future glory." 

and " feelings" and " sentiment" are often used as 
synonymous terms, hut the former is Saxon, and 
the latter is Norman, or, properly speaking, Latin. 
Then we are very apt to show our little learning by 
usin^ pretentious words, when simple ones would 
suffice. " Man" and "Woman" are expressive, and 
terse words, " lady" and " gentleman" amhiguous, 
and "individual" is too generic hy far. " Commence- 
ment" is now like Grecian bends, and infinitesimal 
bonnets, very fashionable ; but good, old, staid 
"beginning" has still a true ring about it. How 
would it sound to read " In the cofmnmcewmt God 
created the heavens, and the earth," " In the com^ 
mencement was the word," &c. " That which was in 
the commencement, is now, and ever shall be?" Milton 


does not use ''commencement " in all liis poems, and 
it is seldom to be found in Sliakspeare. Let these 
foreigners be welcome to our hearths, but l-.^*^ them 
not cast out the legitimate members of the family. 
Let them serve a long apprenticeship, before they 
are wedded to our loved ones. Hume scolded Gibbon 
because he wrote in French : " Why do jou com- 
pose in French, and thus carry faggots to the wood, 
as Horace says to those Romans who wrote in 
Greek." The history of literature teaches this fact, 
that those prose, or poetic writers, who used their 
native language, and were men of genius, immortal- 
ized themselves, and their works, while their com- 
peers, equally intellectual, and gifted, have been for- 
gotten, because they employed a fashionable and 
foreign language "that perished in the using." Phi- 
losophers may ignore, in their nomenclature, the 
Saxon, and Norman, and simple English, but the 
dramatist, poet, orator, and literary writer must 
principally study, digest, and use, that language 
which lingered on the lips of Chaucer, and dropped 
in sweetness from his pen, and which was the life 
blood,in the writings of Spenser, Shakspeare, Milton, 
and Wordsworth. Is it not strange that so much of 
the i^nglo-Saxon has been preserved when we con- 
flider the assaults which have been made upon 
its integrity? "Look at the English," says Dr. 
Bosworth in his " Prolegomena ;" " polluted by 
Danish, and Norman conquests, distorted in its 
genuine and noble features, by old and recent en- 
deavours, to mould it after the French fashion, in- 


vaded by a hostile force of Greek, and Latin words, 
threatened by increasing hosts to overwhelm the 
indigenous terms. In these long contests against the 
combined might of so many forcible enen^ies, the 
language, it is true, has lost some of its power of 
inversion, in the structure of sentences, the means of 
denoting the dififerenco of genders, and the nice 
distinctions by inflection and termination ; almost 
everyword is attacked by the spasm of the accent, 
and the drawing of consonants to wrong positions, 
yet the old English principle is not overpowered. 
Trampled down by the ignoble feet of strangers, its 
spring still retains force enough to restore itself ; it 
lives and plays through all the veins of the language ; 
it impregnates the innumerable strangers entering 
is domirious, vv^ith its temper and stains them with 
is colour ; not unlike the Greek, which, in taking up 
Oriental words stripped them of their foreign costume 
and bid them appear as native Greeks." 

However much we may love our native tongue, it 
'would not be wise for the mere love of it, to adopt and 
perpetuate those words in it, which have not only lost 
their primitive meaning, but often have now an ob- 
jectionable signification. Our modesty, however, 
does not yet compel us to say " limb" for " leg " " de- 
composition" for rottenness " " ranger of the forest*' 
for " bull " *' disagreeable effluvia" for " stench," " per- 
spiration " for *' sweat " " in a state of inebriety " for 
"drunk," "obliquity of vision" for cross-eyed" and non 
compos mentis" for " crazy," but these are words of 
Anglo-Saxon parentage, which by the inexorable law 


of custom, and fashion, are no longer polite in some 
circles. These to a great extent have been sup 
planted by the genteel French, or the chaste Latin, 
and thus lose their so-called grossness, and pointed 
significance. Medical students have lectures deliver- 
ed to them,on the most delicate subjects in Anatomy, 
physiology, and medical jurisprudence, yet, by the 
use of classical terms, nothing is said or written to 
shock the most sensitive taste. On the other hand, 
we have no sympathy with those fastidious and affect- 
ed individuals, who substitute silly slang phrases, in 
terminable Latin, French, or Greek words, for honest 
English, because these may conventionally have a 
double meaning — the one polite and the other ob- 
scene, — for the very fact of their avoiding these ex- 
pressions indicate that they are versed in the meanings 
which they seem to eschew. Such are apparently as 
sensitive, as the young lady, who could not bear to 
have the legs of her piano exposed to vulgar gaze, 
and consequently had them decently covered with 
nicely frilled pantalettes. 

The Anglo-Saxon has a sufficient number of synony- 
mous terms to choose from, for pU practical purposes, 
and classical words, and quotations, require great taste 
and judgment to introduce them efficiently into our 
language, and even in such instances, the body can 
be transferred, but the spirit never. " There are men 
so perversely constituted in mind, so predestinated 
to be pedants, and slavish copyfsts, that nothing can 
cure them. Such men will traverse the whole circle 
of Greek and Ro nan Literature, and acquire nothing 


thereby but the faculty of spoiling English. Upon 
such, the ^race and beauty which prevade the remains 
of classical antiquity are utterly lost ; they must 
transfer them bodily, and in their actual forms, or not 
at all. And this, they foolishly think they have done, 
when they have violently torn away some few tatter 
of phraseology, — some fragments of the language of 
their admired models, and grotesquely stuck them on 
their own pages; totally unconscious that their beauties 
like that of the flower plucked from its stem, wither 
at once by the very violence, which tears it from its 
place, and that there is no moie resemblance between 
classical compositions, and such imitations, than be- 
tween the wild hedge-rows, and the ?wxtus siccus of the 

There is a number of " slang" phrases being con- 
tinually used by the common people,and which become 
after a time necessarily incorporated,into ihe vernacu- 
lar. For example, an orator who has redundancy 
of language, and is itching for an opportunity to "hold 
forth" is said, like a full pail carried by an unsteady 
arm, to be "slopping over:" A newly married couple 
are like a team " hitched up." A rascal who has- by 
a species of acting, on his circumscribed stage, de- 
ceived, and has ai last been unmasked, is said to be 
"played out." The fellows who fled across the lines 
^o us during the American war, after being paid 
large sums for their services, had applied to them the 
laconic term "bounty jumpers." See that fellovr 
puffed out with his own importance, without brains to 
qualify him for aught, but bedecking his person, if'ith 


gaudy trimmings,and whose swagger, and dignity, and 
noise are like "a heavy swell" of the sea, is not the 
term expressive ? Do we value our truthfulness, and 
do not wish to confirm it by an oath, than we can 
say it is true " y u may bet." During the American 
war a term was introduced, as applying to those who 
fled from their duty. They were said to " skedaddle.'' 
Did some classic wag Anglicize the Greek verb 
skedaunumi, skedadzo, I scatter ; put to flight. The 
poor unfortunate, who staggers home from the tavern, 
and as he makes zigzag lines, grumbling at the narrow 
highway, is said to be overdosed with '* Tangleleg." 
Not only has the Anglo-Saxon been able to hold its 
own against all intruders, with regard to common 
words, but the proper names ot that tongue are still 
retained with slight, and almost, unavoidable changes, 
in central England, where the Saxons had their strong- 
est hold. Take, for their example,many of the suffixes 
to local names, horroio,hrough, bunj/i, bury, fold, worth* 
ham, toil, park ; all of these terminations suggest to 
the reader many of the most noted places in England, 
and south Scotland, and all of which mean an enclos- 
ure, wall, or hedge. Ton is from the Anglo-Saxon 
verb tinan, to hedge about, ivorth is from iveorthingy 
to encircle — Boswortb is an enclosed jmrk. Ton also 
means a walled town, as Kensingston, the city of 
the Kensings, and Sandgate, or a sea barrier — a town 
in Kent — which has opposite to it in France SangiUCy 
showing a common origin. The Saxon wick is attached 
to many towns in England, such as Warwick, Norwich^ 
1?V ickham and Nantwick. Wick means a creek or 


small stream, and sometimes a hamlet. Hursts holt^ 
<hart, wo/d, and such like refer to a wooded country* 
So that really from these names, a good insight can be 
obtained of the physical aspects of Central Britain, 
during the days of the Saxon Heptarchy,when streams, 
and woods, and outlets, and bays, and mountains, and 
promontories were, and wherein they have changed 
since then. All such words are enduring monuments, 
erected by our ancestors for practical purposes, and 
are still extant, almost in forms that were used twelve 
centuries ago, and which bid fair to be co-equal in 
time, with the history of the English-speaking race 
of whatever nationality. The English language has 
been a wonderful vehicle, of wonderful thought for 
many cycles of years, and is now in the ascendant, 
and destined to be the universal language of exalted 
human thought. To what shall compare it ? It is a 
telescope which brings nearer to us not only the great 
central suns, that have shone with undying radiance 
thoughout the ever-revolving years of history, throw- 
ing out corruscations, that have even illumined the 
darkest " nooks and crannies" of the murky ages, 
and have shed light in unusual and brilliant scin- 
tillations of poetic glory, snd intellection, upon the 
advancing wave of civilization, but also those lesser 
lights, whose glimmering have done much to add to 
the beauty of the firmamen t of literature, and are 
** forever singing as they shine." 

It is a telegraph which has sent the electricity of 

kindred minds, in continually-augmented currents, 

' down through succeeding generations, ending, but 


not expiring, in the brilliant blaze of the 19th cen- 
tury. No7v thundering in its course, like the Alpine 
tempest, as it pours its vengeance upon glaciers, grey 
crags, and stunted pines ; then murmuring with the 
solemn intonation of an ^^^olian harp ; now flash- 
ing a lurid flame across the darkened and darkening 
wave of social, political, and martial revolution ; then 
emitting a solitary «park of power, as if the *' vital 
flame", were about to expire ; now clicking intelligence 
along the nerves of " Father Time" ; thm incoherently 
vibrating mere vitality, throughout the long years of 
the dark ages. Our literature is, and has been, music, 
which, in the thrilling strains of inspiration, or tower- 
ing genius, comes down in mournful cadences, along 
the majestic corridors of ages, or echoing in triumphant 
strains, through the vista of myriad years, taking up 
in gleefulness,the grand oratorios,and sublhne antheips 
of universal jubilee, filling, from time to time, inter- 
mittently, the whole earth with the rhythm, and 
melody, of expressed human freedom, sympathy, and 
love. Our language, in conjunction with its kindred 
tongues, has been a heart which has beat unceasingly 
since the time it was born in the dawn of historic day, 
and cradled in Grecian liberty ; now throbbing in the 
■whirlwind of political changes, and at every stroke of 
its ne»'vOus and palpitating walls, a vital stream of 
religious, and civil freedom has poured onwards in 
resistless eddies ; then beating in universal sym- 
pathy with the oppressed, and sending forth, in match- 
less eloquence, its philippics against the despot, and 
fi blaiik verse, and heroic stanzas, and Runic rhymes, 


comedy, irony, satire, and fierce invective, making 
kings tremble, and "divinely appointed" emperors, 
shiver in terror, and scttmg by its ceaseless strokes the 
manacled, and the imprisoned free,who were pavilion- 
ed in the shadow ol mental and spiritual bondage. 

If it be true that the falling of a dew-drop, as well 
ai'. the vibrations of an earthquake, and even thought, 
affect, by the la*v of action and reaction, not only 
earth, but the universe of substance, and matter, and 
that from the whisper of a lover, to the roar of the 
loudest thunder, there is an echo iu nature's vast 
sounding-gallery, and that all are indelibly stamped 
upon the mysterious whole, and can be read by glori- 
fied spirits, and angelic hosts, as histories, and biogra- 
phies of inanimate nature, how incalculably great 
must have been the impressions, and the mental modes, 
and the verbal expressions of tliose giant minds of 
whom the earth was not worthy, and whose ideas 
have been preserved in classic lore, leavening the 
whole lump of human ideality, and carrying those 
influence8,in ever-widening circles into the spirit land ! 
It is true, words are only arbitrary symbols of human 
thought, yet, every good thought has connected with 
it a sound that carries in its utterance, significance to 
others, and every evil thought has also a representa- 
tive word, which, like a plague-spot, tells of corruption 
within. Language becomes signs, and symptoms, of 
the progress, or decay, of a nation. In short, experi- 
ence and history teach, that a nation and its language 
are a duality, which stand or fall together, and if the 
language survives the people, and their immediate 


descendants, it is only a tiead language. How jealous- 
ly and zealously should we guard the noble English 
language, from aught that would pollute it, or tend to 
destroy its integrity ! If we have a love of country, let 
us indentify with it a love of our mother tongue, for let 
us be assured that the complete history of our race,and 
the entire records of our living literature, will be co- 
equal and co-extensive. The one may only be able 
to sing a recpiicm over the other. What does history- 
say ? Where is glorious Pcrscpolis, and what has be- 
come of its euphonious and pure Persian ? 

Who can point out the ruins, or the site of regal 
Troy, and tell us of even the ulialect of the brave 
F'riam, and his devoted followers ? Where are the 
languages, or dialects of Carthage and Baalbec? Even 

•'' Babylon, 

Learned and wise, hath perished utterly, 

Nor leaves her Speech one word to aid the sigh 

That would lament her." 

The Sphinx and the Pyramids stand almost as im 
perishable as the Nile, but what was the language of 
those who carved the one, and rolled the huge stones 
of the other together ? Not a vestige remains. 

" Ancient Thebes ; Tyre by the margin of the \yavcs ; 
Palmyra, central in the desert fell," 

but there cometh no response from their desert 
habitations. Athens no longer sends forth a flowing 
stream of pure and euphonius Greek, in her works of 
philosophic research, and in her poetry, rich as that 
which " Burning Sappho loved and sung," not only to 
Asia Minor and the thousand classic isles of the 


Archipelago, but also " fulmin'd over Greece," with 
her resistless eloquence ;" and even proud Corinth has 
no memento save that which is on the page of history. 
The speech of the stately, prosaic,and stoical Roman, 
is now only known in its literary relics, yet at one 
time it was the language of Empire, and law, spread 
by Emperor, Consul, Pro-Consul, and sturdy warriovs, 
wherever rose the Roman eagle, and wherever w^ved 
their victorious banner. The lanejuage of the painted 
savages of Britain, long before the days of heroic 
Boadicea, is now almost a myth. The stone, iron, 
and bronze periods of American history, were cycles 
of prosperity for a mighty race : rising from barbar- 
ism to civilization, and the splendid monuments — 
whether the mounds of Ohio, or the wonderful 
structures of Central America now in ruins — are 
evidences of intellectual culture, not far behind that 
of the boasted 19th century ; but where is the language 
of this race — their books and their written literature ? 
Is the savage red man their descendant, or is he their 
victor ? Who can now furl up the dark veil, and 
give us a glimpse into the past history of this conti- 
nent ? A Canadian poet has well s ang : 

" On on to the regions lone 

The generations go ; 
They march along to.the mingled song 

Of hope and joy and woe. 

"On, on to the regions lone. 

For there's no tarrying here, 
And the hoary past is joined at last 

By all it held so dear." 


The skeleton of the Mastodon or the Megatheri- 
um — the foot-prifits of mammoth birds upon the petri- 
fied sands of tim.i — the fossilized giants of the fen,or of 
the forest — tlv horrid reptiles in their rocky sepul- 
chres, and all the remains of the untold, and half- 
discovered wonders of ages, and epochs, and gener- 
ations, and floods, and fiery trials, which strike the 
thoughtful luiman mind with amazement, are dead 
tongues, and expressive and unutterable languages of 
what has been, lut will be no more forever. In like 
manner shall the English language perish ? Shall the 
rich, expressive, glowing tongue of a Chaucer, Spenser, 
Pope, Shakespeare, Milton, Scott, Wordsworth, Long- 
fellow, and Tennyson, become only a sad memorial of 
the past ? It is a language, which, in its tones, speaks 
freedom. It knows no bounds, and is circumscribed 
by no barricades. It follows the footsteps of our 
restless race throughout the whole of the vast heritage 
of the Anglo-Saxon, and by incisive power,penetrates 
among foreign tongues, in the remotest parts of the 
earth. It echoes in the hills, and valleys, of the 
Australasian continent, trembling in the torrid breezes 
of Africa, and India, and in the howling tempests of 
polar seas — vibrating on the air of the American 
continent, in every city, througliout every forest, over 
every prairie, on every lake, in the happy^homes and 
thoroughfares of forty millions, of our thrice-blessed 
and happy race. It is shouted from half the islands 
that beautify the face of every sea, and from half the 
decks of men-of-war, and merchantmen that float 
upon the billows. It shakes the Anglo-Saxon banner 


of many hues, and of divers nationalities to the 
winds of heaven, " from the rising to the setting sun," 
and beneath its ample folds cluster that sturdy race 
of Norsemen,who mould public opinion, at home, and 
abroad, by free sentiment, free speech, free pens, free 
presses, indomitable energy, unbending will, love of 
-conquest, and stubborn resistance to civil and religi- 
ous wrong. 


T T TE are to some extent the creatures ot circum- 
Y Y stance, and are influenced more or less by 
the objects of perception, because they continually 
obtrude themsekes upon our senses, and because it 
requires very little effort of mind to partially under- 
stand all, that is necessary for our comforts and 
wants. Yet if one man more than another happens 
to extend his sphere of knowledge, beyond that of 
his fellow mortals, he has additional happiness in 
himself, and it is his duty and privilege, to com- 
municate his discoveries to others. All mankind 
has a community of interests. Bonds, and scourg- 
ings, and imprisonments, might force from the lips of 
Galileo a retraction of his belief in the Copemi- 
can system of astronomy, yet, in spite of all oppos- 
ition, the old man had a mental reservation of the 
truth which no ignominy could eradicate. Colum- 
bus would not have deserved our gratitude, it he and 
his crew had concealed from mortal ken their dis- 
covery. Harvey, in the midst of much opposition, 
declared to the world his discovery of the circulation 



•f the blood. Newton had "atheist" hurled spitefully 
at him, because he enunciated the laws of gravitation. 
His enemies declared he put laws, in theplace of God. 
He conquered, and they were confounded. Franklin 
caught hold of the forked lightning, which flashed 
athwart the darkened cloud, and said to heaven's 
artillery " go," and it obeyed his mandate, " come," 
and it carried his messages from pole to pole. Yet, 
he told the truth to a wondering world. Simpson re- 
vealed the glad tidings, in regard to chloroform, and 
suffering humanity rejoiced. Although there is so 
much true nobility in scientific men, and so much 
pleasure, in exploring new fields of investigation, yet 
*' there is only here and there a traveller." The 
would-be-fashionable tourist will go in raptures, yawn- 
ingly — as a matter ot course — over the grandeur of 
the Falls of Niagara, or the Yosemite. He will des- 
cant, in a stereotyped way, onthe romantic and stem 
sublimity of Loch Lomond, the Alps, the Rhine, or 
the Andes, but there is no vibration of soul in the con- 
templation. The dandy, who struts the evanescent day 
in fashionable frivolity — in striking costume — ia 
baubles, which " elude the grasp and vanish into air," 
or the young lady whose stretch of thought only com- 
passes the latest fashions — the newest novelettes — 
the striking attitude, the latest schottische, or waltz^ 
are gorgeous butterflies that dazzle in the sunshine, 
but cower, and disappear, in the fierce storms of life, 
or in the dark days, which try men's souls. I'he 
farmer, or mechanic, or merchant, whose aspirations 
rise no higher than the plough, the work -bench, or 


the counter, is living in vain, and is only in a small 
degree exalted above the vegetable, or the beasts of 
the field, instead of being only "a little lower than 
the angels, and crowned with glory and honor." In 
our multifarious studies, and amid the harassing duties 
of life, comparatively few of us turn our thoughts 
upon ourselves "fearfully and wonderfully made.' 
The body, the great workshop of the soul, and the 
soul, the immortal essence, which gives it vitality, 
are to many as if they were not. How we long, 
instinctively, to catch a glimpse of the far beyond ? 
Won't some indulgent spirit " blab it cut ? " We are 
fettered by a gross materialism, and are wedded to 
a clog, which nothing but death will sever from us. 
We almost envy the position of a gas})ing victim, 
in the throes of dissolution, whose face is flattened 
against the window panes, on the outskirts of a 
future eternity, as he gazes into its labyrnths in 
wonder, whose hands are toying with the curtains 
which hide the mystery of mysteries, and whose 
spirit is pluming its wings, for a flight into the dark 
unknown. What an enigma in spite of all reason, 
and all Revelation ! We often ask ourselves puzzl- 
ing questions, on the great problem of life. Has 
the soul no knowledge of the external world, except 
through the senses ? We can hear without the ear. 
We can see without the eyes. We can taste inde- 
pendently of the mouth. When these organs of 
special sense are not used, the capabilities of the 
eenses are enlarged. The soul takes loftier flights, 
in these so-called abnormal conditions. There is a 


sense which I have never seen mentioned, but I have 
often felt its influence. Others assert that they hav6 
felt the same, when their attention has been directed 
to it. I shall call it the sensfi oi presence. You are 
in a room as far as you know alone. No sound 
breaks the silence. No sense receives the sHghtest 
impression, and yet you feel the presence of some 
one. You are not even greatly surprised when a 
friend, in sport, springs suddenly into your presence, 
from some hidden nook. What is the medium by 
which you become cognizant of the fact ? Does the 
soul ever act independently ot the body, and become 
cognizant of external things, without the aid of sen- 
sation ? Is animal lite a distinct thing from the soul, 
and may be called spirit, and only a medium — a iertt- 
um quid between soul and body, which keeps sentinel 
watch in the body,when the soul is indulging in flights 
of exploration beyond its temporary habitation ? Docs 
the soul enlarge at times its faculties, and capacities, 
in spite of materialism ? I have not space to quote 
remarkable instances in proof of the truth of one 
of these views, yet, few but must have seen, the won- 
ders of somnambulism. In sleep, consciousness is 
inert. Attention is lost. We have sensation, but 
not reflection. A sleeping man will wink at a candle, 
placed near his eyelids, and still sleep on. He will 
throw up his hand to defend his ear from the irritation 
of a tickling straw, and knows it not. He can be 
gently jostled in bed, until he rolls in uneasiness, but 
he may slumber on. He dreams in a half-awakened 
state,and sees,and hears,in phantasy,the most outrage- 


ous things, and to him they are a reality, for judgraeut 
is in chains and imagination is running riot. These 
^im vagaries of the brain 

" Ne'er can fold their wandering wings 
The wild unfathomable things." 

In somnambulism, however, we have attention in 
vigorous exercise. So intensely is it exercised on 
one particular object, that it will rouse the will, to 
accomplish marvels. Here arc the will, attention, 
memory, and sensation,in full play, and yet conscious- 
ness dormant. The eyes may be wide open, and 
light may fall upon the living, and sensitive retina. 
The image of external objects may be formed on it, 
but the subject sees not. The ear may still be *• a 
sounding gallery," and the auditory nerve in tone, 
and vigour,but he hears not. He may be a gourmand, 
and an epicure, but even bitter aloes may be placed 
on his tongue. He will walk on housetops, on the 
edge of precipices, and fearlessly in places, which 
would make a waking man tremble. He will sing 
loudly, songs, and play on instruments, difficult 
pieces of music far beyond his powers when waking, 
and neither his own voice, nor the sound of the instru- 
ment, will rouse him. Why is the person thus 
affected, not cognizant of surrounding objects? Has. 
the soul withdrawn from the windows? Is not the 
spul using the body, independently of the senses ? 

Many persons hold, that the somnambulistic state is 
controlled by a second intelligence ; that is, that 
Buch lead double lives. The Archbishop of Bordeaux 
relates the following, concerning a young priest, which 


bears out the idea : He was in the habit of writing 
sermons, when asleep ; although a card was placed 
between his eyes and the note book, he continued to 
write vigorously. Did the history stop here,we should 
have a well authenticated case of vision without the 
aid of eyes. But the collateral circumstances show, 
that his writing was accomplished, not by sight, but by 
a most accurate representation of the object to be ob- 
tained, as will be further illustrated in our next case ; 
for, after he had written a page requiring correction, a 
piece of blank paper of the exact size was substituted 
for his own manuscript, rvnd on that he made the cor- 
rections, in the precise situation which they would have 
occupied on the original page. A very astonishing 
part of this is, that, which relates to his writing music 
in his sleeping state, which it is said he did w^ith per- 
fect precision. He asked for certain things, and saw 
and heard such things, but only such as bore directly 
upon the subject of his thoughts. He detected the 
deceit, when water was given to him in the place 
of brandy, which he had asked for. Finally, he knew 
nothing of all that had transpired when he awoke, 
but in his next paroxysm he remembered all accurately 
— and so lived a sort of double life, a phenomenon 
which we believe to be universal, in all the 'cases ot 

In Catalepsy, or Trance-waking, we have a peculiar 
state of mind, in which the relations of mind and body- 
are changed. The person, externally, may appear the 
same, except that the faculties, and capacities, are in a 
more exalted state — the former more active, and the 


latter, more receptive. The subject of it speaks more 
fluently, sings more sweetly, steps with more elasticity, 
and has a keener sense of the ludicrous, or pathetic. 
He may feel naught, but slight spasms of the body, 
but he loses a consciousness of past existence, in a 
normal condition. He remembers nothing, but what 
happens in this peculiar state. When he awakens he 
remembers nothing of what occurred when he was in 
this relation, and when he returns to that cataleptic 
state again, memory only returns to the facts relating 
to the last condition of trance. In fact there would 
seem to be two intermittent phases of consciousness, 
entirely distinct from one another. Some call this 
**two lives," which is a term scarcely correct. This 
state is most remarkable, and has been closely in- 
v:'Stigated for ages by intelligent, and scientific men. 
The ears may not hear, but the tips of the fingers may. 
The eyes cannot see, but the back of the head can. 
The mouth has no taste, but if bitter or sweet ingredi- 
ents are put on the pit of the stomach, jhe different 
tastes are at once known, by the patient, although 
ignorant of their nature before. The perceptive 
powers are marvellous. Such discern objects, through 
mountains, walls, houses ; and distance, however far, 
is no impediment to their visiona Their own bodies 
are to them transparent as crystal, and so are the 
bodies of others. They can read the thoughts ot 
others without a blunder. It matters not whether these 
are near, or far away. Matter, however dense, is no 
obstacle. Space, however boundless, has no distance. 
Time, far in the future, is to them an eternal now. 


They have a sort of prescience, and can foretell to sti 
certainty future events. It would seem as if the 
body was a telegraph office, and the clerk in charge 

* of it, merely, animal life, and the soul was taking aerial 
flights, laying its telegraph lines as it went, and, quick 
as human thought, sending luck to its head-quarters, 
accounts of its explorations. This is mere hypothesis, 
which inductive philosophy may yet substantiate. I 
am aware that Mesmer, Hon. Robert Boyle, and others 
who flourished at the beginning of this century, held 

- to the opinion that there was a subtle fluid, analogous 
to electricity, or magnetism, or perhaps a modification 
of these, or one of them, which, in its manifestations, 
they called Od force. This they divided into two 
kinds, negative and positive ; we presume to corres 
pond with electrical conditions. This force, they 
held, produced all the manifestations of mesmerism. 
Those under its influence, in a superabundant degree, 
were subject to the will of the operator. His will was 
theirs. His emotions influenced them. His sensa- 
tions, and theirs, were merged in one. In short, the 
duality became a unity, by a blending of this subtle 
power. At the same time, if the patient was more 
than ordinarily effected, a trance state ensued, and 
feeling was lost. Cloquet, the justly celebrated French 
surgeon, has left on record, a case of a woman who 
had cancer in the breast, and who, by mesmeric in- 
fluence brought to bear on her, lor several days suc- 
cessively, fell into a death-like trance, and, had the 
diseased breast removed, without the least conscious- 
ness of pain, although the operation lasted twelve 



minutes. The prejudice in Paris was bo strong against 
Cloquotjthat he had to discontinue such practices. The 
stupidity of iii;norance prevailed. Since that time 
(1829) ^'^^ operations of this subtle force have been 
manifested in tens of thousands, and have been taken 
advantage of by ti\e devotees of humbug, to accom- 
plish sinister purposes, and have consequently been 
•wilfully despised by men of research, and science, al- 
though it may yet be the vestibule to an arcana of 
untold blessings to mankind This Od force seems 
to be governed by some of the laws which operate in 
magnetism. Mons. Petetin caused seven persons to 
form a circle. Two of these held the hands of a cata- 
leptic person, who could hear nothing, but, by the tips 
of the lingers. Wiien Dr. Petetin whispered to the 
fingers of the most remote person, the patient heard 
the words, and sentences, distinctly. When a stick 
was made part of the circle, it was the same in results. 
If a glius rod^ or a xiik iflove intervened, the einn/nunica- 
tion was destroyed. This mysterious agency is not 
discommoded by dislanee, for as far as the patient is 
concerned, it isanui'nilated,and mind is read in all its 
wonderful phenomena as if it were a book printed in 
the largest characters. Dr. Mayo, in his work on 
''Popular Superstitions," tells of being at Boppard, in 
Prussia, as an invalid. He wrote to a friend in Paris* 
This friend put the letter in the hands of Alexis, a 
trance patient in the city, who knew nothing of Dr* 
Mayo, and asked him to tell what he knew about him. 
He told at once Dr. Mayo's age, stature, disposition, 
and illness. He said he was crippled, and at that 


time ot the day, half-past eleven, a.m., in bed. 
said that Dr. Mayo was living on the sea-shore. Thig 
was not correct, but the doctor delighted to go down 
to the banks of the Rhine, and listen to the surge of 
waves made by the wheels of passing steamers, as the 
noise reminded him forcibly of the sea waves beating 
on the shore. The friend told Alexis this was not 
true, and the patient, after a few minutes' reflection, 
corrected himself,and said, "I was wrong, he does not 
live on the sea-coast, but on the Rhine, twenty leagues 
from Frankfort." This influence, through some 
medium, call it what you will, Ciin be exercised at 
great distances. In other words, two persons can 
have an influence potently exercised upon one another, 
although many miles distant. There is a current of 
something passing between them, so that the thoughts, 
feelings, or sensations of the weaker party, become 
temporarily subservient to the stronger. Dr. Foissac, 
in his able work on " Animal Magnetism," among 
other cases, gives the following : He was in the habit 
of mesmerising one Paul Villagrand, in Paris. This 
subject desired to return to Magnac-javal, Haute 
Vienne, his native place. This place was about 300 
miles distant. After he left, the Dr. wrote to the 
young man'e* father, a letter, saying, " I am magnetis- 
ing you, on the 2nd of July, at 5^ o'clock, p.m. I 
will awake you, when you have had a quarter of an 
hour's sleep." The fiither was directed to give the 
letter to his son. He, however, neither gave, nor did 
he inform him of its contents, being somewhat oppos- 
ed to this — to him — sort of legerdemain. Neverthc- 


less, at ten rainiites before six, Paul being in the 
midst ot his family, experienced a sensation of heat, 
and considerable uneasiness. His shirt was wet 
through, with perspiration. He wished to retire to his 
room ; but they detained him. In a few minutes he 
was entranced. In this state, he astonished the per- 
sons present, by reading, with his eyes shut, several 
lines of a book taken at hazard from the library, and 
by telling the hour, and minute, indicated by a watch, 
the face of which he did not see. 

Dr. Mayo, while residing temporarily at Boppard, in 
the winter of 1846, sent a lock of hair, of one of hi.s 
patients, to an American gentleman residing m Paris. 
The patient was unknown to anyone in the city. He 
took this lock to a man who was under the influence 
of Od force. The somnambulist said, that the hair 
belonged to a person, who had partial palsy of the 
hips, and legs, and that for another complaint he was 
in the habit of using a catheter. This statement was 
strictly true. The volume could be filled with 
illustrations of this kind. The prescience of such is 
remarkable. The extended powers of discerning 
occurrences, at great distances is strangely true. Mr. 
Williamson, who investigated these things with acu- 
men, asked one of his patients to tell him about the 
moon, but the answer was, that as he approached it, 
the light was too bright to be tolerated. Alexis, men- 
tioned before, was asked about the condition of the 
planets. He said they were inhabited, with the ex- 
ception of those, which are either too near to, or too 
remote from, the sun. He said that the inhabitants 


of the different planets are very diverse ; that the earth 
is best off, for that man has double the intelHgence ot 
the ruling animals, in the other planets. This may be 
a shrewd guess, but it may be the truth. Of all the 
inhabitants of this solar system, man may be the high- 
est intelligence. Analogy, and inductive philosophy 
do not lay any stumbling-blocks in the way. The 
forme'- does not veto a possibility, and the latter 
throws no doubts in the way of inferential probabili- 
ties. Sir Wm. Hamilton says, in his lectures on 
Metaphysics and Logic, of Waking Trance, especially 
of somnambulism, " that it is a phenomenon still 
more astonishing (tlian dreaming). In this singular 
state a person performs a series of rational actions, 
and those frequently of the most difficult and delicate 
nature, and, what is still more marvellous, with a 
talent to which he could make no pretensions wh(;n 
awake. (Ancillon, Esaias Philos. II. 161.) His mem- 
ory, and reminiscences supply him with recollections 
of words,and things,which, perhaps, never were at his 
disposal in the ordinary state — he speaks more fluently 
a more refined language. And if we are to credit, 
what the evidence, on which it resti, hardly allows us 
to disbelieve, he has not only perception of things 
through other channels than the common organs of 
sense, but the pphere of his cognition is amplified to 
an extent far beyond the limits to which sensible per- 
ception is confined. This subject is one of the most 
perplexing in the whole compass of philosophy ; for, 
on the one hand, the phenomena are so remarkable, 
hat they cannot be believed, and yet, on the other, 


they are of so unambiguous and palpable a character, 
and the witnesses to their reality are so numerous, so 
intelligent, and so high above every suspicion of deceit, 
that it is equally impossible to deny credit to what is 
attested to such ample and unexceptionable evidence.'* 
Muller, the distinguished physiologist, strongly dis- 
believed because he could not understand, and yet, 
in the " Physiology of the Senses," he says, " that the 
mental principle, or cause of the mental phenomena, 
cannot be confined to the brain, but that it exists in a 
latent state in every part of the organism." That ac- 
cepts all that is necessary to establish the abnormal 
(if it can be called such) state of mind, and body, in 
the state referred to. 

The most remarkable of all these wondrous states, 
is that of complete insensibility to all external im- 
pressions, however potent. The windows of the body 
are darkened. The curtains are drawn down, and 
the shutters are closed, and inertia of the material 
tabernacle is the result. The a^o, however, is in full 
activity, and all the more so, by being partially free 
from the incubus of mortality. No stimulant can 
rouse the patient. No electric shock can stir the 
physical frame. The charge of the fluid may, by its in- 
fluence on the nerves, produce violent muscular act- 
ion, enough in the waking moments, to produce acute 
pain, and even imperil life, but, in this state, the soul 
defies the subtle aura, A limb may be amputated, 
an eye extracted, but there is no response of consci- 
ousness. There is no inhalation, nor exhalation, of air 
in connection with the lungs. The body, if not dis- 



turbed, is motionless as a corpse. The heat of the 
body falls many degrees. Commonly the muscles are 
relaxed, as in the recently dead, and occasionally there 
is rigidity, as of a dead]body. In epidemics, such, 
are often buried alive, as all physical signs indicate 
death. Physicians, qualified to judge, say " that this 
state is mc^e frequently produced by spasmodic, and 
nervous illness, than by mental causes. It has fol- 
lowed fever, and has frequently attended parturition.' 
The patient remembers all his ideal life, and knows 
that it differs from that of dreaming, in being con- 
sistent, and in never indulging in the wildest extrava- 
ganzas. The judgment, and attention are ^'n active 
exercise, and the imagination,by these balance wheels 
is kept in reasonable subjection. So real are the im- 
pressions, subjectively considered, that fanatics, under 
all circumstances^ believe them to be direct, positive, 
and admonitory revelations from God. There is intense 
light within, but the world without is shut off in dark- 
ness. The soul is so intent upon itself, that it has 
no opportunity for explorations beyond itself. 

There is a modification of this state. The affect- 
ed person seems in a profound sleep. The breathing 
and the heart's action are regular. The temperature 
of the body is normal, but the pupils ot the eyes are 
insensible to light, and are distended to their ut- 
most size, and fixed, in that position, in spite of the 
most intense stimulation, by means of light. I have 
seen numbers of such cases, especially hysterical 
patients. It often follows fever,and would seem as a 
rest for nature, and as an alternative to death. In- 


tense excitement will cause it. The actings of a 
tragedy, whether real or histrionic, the mental tension 
of religious excitement, and the sudden alarms of 
impending danger, will produce trance coma, all of 
which arc purely physical impressions, acting upon 
the brain, and being excited, secondarily, by reflex 
action of the mind, thus operating, mutually, on the 
three-fold nature of man — body, mind, and spirit. 
Rev. George Sanby, in his work on Mesmerism, tells 
that "George ¥0%, the celebrated father of Quaker- 
ism, at one period lay in a trance for fourteen days, 
and the people came to stare, and wonder at him. 
He had the appearance of a dead man ; but his sleep 
was full of divine visions of beauty, and glory." There 
is a story told of Socrates, the philosopher, to the 
same effect. Being in military service in the expedit- 
ion to Potidea, he is reported to have stood for twenty 
four hours, before the camp, rooted to the same spot, 
and absorbed in deep thought, his arms folded, and 
his eyes fixed upon one object, as if his soul werfr 
absent from the body. The newspapers of to-day 
give us information of such cases every few months, 
and evidenced by unimpeachable testimony of medi- 
cal men. Need I say, that in the dark ages, these 
manifestations were supposed to be demoniacal, and 
witches, and wizards, were roasted forthwith. The 
poor unfortunates, themselves, not being able to ex- 
plain the physical, and pschycological phenomena, 
thought themselves possessed of devils, and even ac- 
knowledged to their latest hour that such was the 
case. In the present day,the other extreme is reached 


l3y many otherwise intelligent persons, and all such 
unusual manifestations, during religious excitement, 
have been traced directly to divine and spiritual in 
fluences. The affected believe, that it is such, and 
often become changed in life, and practice, for the 
better : but a student of nature sees in it all, a 
species of waking trance, brought about by intense 
attention, to fervid eloquence, or, in nervous persons, 
to fear for themselves, or sympathy for others. 

Rev. Le Roi Sunderland, in Zioti^s Watchman, N. 
Y., Oct. 2nd, 1842, says : — 

" I have seen persons often * lose their strength,' as 
it is called, at Camp meetings, and other places of 
great religions excitement ; and not pious people 
alone, but those also who were not professors of re- 
ligion. I saw more than twenty affected in this way, 
in Ennis, Mass. Two young men, by the name of 
Crowell, came one day to a prayer meeting. They 
were quite indifferent. I conversed with them freely 
but they showed no signs of penitence. From the 
meeting they went to their shoe shops, to finish some 
work, before going to the meeting in the evening. On 
seating themselves, they were both struck perfectly 
stiff, I was immediately sent for, and found them sit- 
ting paralysed (that is, they were in a cataleptic, or 
trance state) on their benches, with their work in 
their hands, unable to get up, or to move at all. I 
have seen scores of persons, affected the same way. 
I have seen persons lie in this state forty-eight hours. 
At such times they are unable to converse, and are 
sometimes unconscious of what is passing around 


them. At the same time, they say they are in a 
"happy state of mind." Others jerk around like a 
fish out of water, or, as if, they were kept in lively ex- 
ercise by, impinging pins, cr goaded to activity by the 
application of hot irons. These seizures happened 
in Kentucky and Tennessee years ago, in New York 
at the revivals of 1852, and in Ireland about ten 
years ago. So spasmodic were the actions of the 
affected, that in common language they were called 
the "jerks." The eccentric Loronzo Dow, in his 
journal, tells, that when he' was preaching at one time 
in Knoxville, Tennessee, before the governor, and a 
large audience, these seizures commenced. " I have 
seen," said he, "all denominations of religion (in- 
cluding Quakers) exercised by * jerks ' — gentleman 
and lady, black and white, young and old, without 
exception. I passed a meetinghouse, where I ob- 
served the undergrowth had been cut down for camp 
meetings, and from fifty, toj^a hundred saplings were 
left for the people, who were jerked to hold by. I ob- 
served where they had held on, they had kicked up 
the earth, as a horse stamping flies." The Earl of 
Shrewsbury, in 1841, saw two rdigieuses in Italy, 
who lay in a cataleptic state, and were believed by 
the people to be lying in a sovt of divine beati- 
tude. Their devotional posture, the clasped hands, 
the upturned eyes, the wonderful intuitions, and the 
quietude, were to the ignorant, signs'of heavenly illu- 
mination. Science tells another story. Others thus 
afflicted have paroxysms of excitement, and honestly 

believe themselves possessed of evil sph its. An epi- 



demic of this kind swept over large districts of Europe, 
in the i6th century. It was called the "wolf sick- 
ness," for those ir.fluenced, thought themselves wolves, 
and were owned by an invisibh master. Some 
thought themselves dogs, others fiends incarnate. 
Some believed their shoulders were adorned with 
wings, and that on broomsticks, or wooden horses 
they navigated the air, quickly, as thought, and thus 
the furore raged for centuries, from Druidessess to 
witches, and from fanatics to enthusiasts. Even 
good and conscientious men have been led away 
by these appearances of " something uncanny," for 
only in 1743 an associate Presbytery in Scotland 
was for renewing the fires of persecution, and moved 
for '*the repeal of the penal statutes against witchcraft, 
contrary to the express laws of God, and for which a 
holy God may be provoked, in a way of righteous 
judgment, to leave those who are already ensnared 
to be hardened more and more, and to permit Satan 
to temp. j,nd seduce others to the same wicked and 
dangerous snare." ("Edinburgh Review," Jan. 1847.) 
Mesmeric influences were brought about by these, so 
called witches, by friction, by induced excitement on 
hysterical women, (wizards were tew), and by narcotics, 
and thus illusions, and hallucinations were produced, 
and at last became realities to the consciousness of 
the victims. Sir Walter Scott, Draper, Carpenter, 
De Boismont, Langlois, and others, give numerous 
examples of individuals, who, by a mere act of the 
will, could conjure in the imagination spectra as real 
to them as any tangible object, in the external world, 


did not judgment, and experience, tell them of the 
nature of the p/ianfasma'a. 

These are some of the phases of the human soul, 
spirit, and body. I may revert to the subject in a 
future number. We conjecture much, but we are 
sure of more. Mystery is enshrouding this field of 
exploration, but glints of light is being cast athwart 
the gloom. The soul is giving us evidences of its ca- 
pabilities, for nobler flights, even when fettered by 
mortality. What will it do when emancipated from 
thraldom ! Now, we see as " through a glass, darkly," 
but the effulgency of eternal day will give to the truly 
emancipated, the universe for a heritage, and the 
smiles of our Creator as the benisons, for true no- 
bility of soul. " It doth not yet appear what we 
«hall be," but '' there shall be no night there." 


■ <— 1> I 

IN I851, 1 started for a tramp through one of the 
most unfrequented parts in California, on an 
exploring expedition. My kit consisted of a few lbs. 
of flour, a piece of pork, a short-handled frying-pan, 
a revolver, a rifle, and a pick, shovel, and hatchet. 
On all sides, throughout the weary miles, were grey 
rocks, beautiful water-falls, myriads of flowers, strewn 
thickly around, as if nature had sown profusely the 
seeds of the flowers of all colours, and all climes. 
This was in January, when we have Jack Frost bind- 
ing everything in Limbo, with his icy hand, j^s the 
sun set in glory, behind the Pacific range of mountains, 
I thought it time to look out for a camping place. 
A cosy nook, beside a purling brook, caught my 
eye, and my fancy. I gathered a few dry pine branch es» 
and was about to apply a match to them, when I 
heard the bark of a dog. This excited my curiosity, 
and surprise, in that lonely place, and joyful at the 
prospect of meeting white faces, and findinga comfort- 
able resting place, I threw down my ignited match, and 
started for the top of the hill. By the time 1 reached 
it, the night had become quite dark, and as I looked 
down into a deep valley, I saw a large Indian camp, 
In the centre of it was a large fire, round which about 



fifly warriors were dancing a war dance. I could 
iec the faces of those turned towards me, and 
observed them covered, in strips, witii war paint. They 
had been for several months previously troublesome 
to the miners, who had penetrated the furthest into 
the mountains in search of gold, and many of them 
were known never to return to their comrades. Here 
I was, a lone man, peering into the very nest of sav- 
ages, on the war-path. I feared, that the dogs, which 
were now barking furiously, might scent an intruder, 
and thought it would be a sort of discretionary valour 
to beat a retreat. I crept back to my prospective 
camp, and shouldered my "traps," making tracks 
backward as fast as the gullies, precipices, and dark- 
ness would permit, imagining that every rock might 
hide a dusky scout, and every bush might cover a 
sanguinary savage. At last, tired out, and feeling 
that I had put many miles between me and the red- 
skins, I threw my pack down, and cutting and eating 
a piece of raw pork for supper, for I feared to 
light a fire, I stretched out my weary limbs for a rest, 
determined not to sleep ; but " the first thing I knew, 
I did'nt know anything," and fell into the arms of 
the drowsy god. Sometime in the night, I was awak- 
ened, by a tugging at my hair. In a moment, I was 
on my feet, and my situation coming vividly to my 
recollection, I felt my scalp move on the top of my 
head, as if it had an intelligent presentment of its fall. 
With pistol in hand, I examined carefully every rock 
clump of bushes, and tree in my neighbourhood, 
^or the moon was shining brightly at the time, but I 


found no enemy. Pshaw ! said I, to myself, it is only 
imagination, and with feelings of satisfaction and 
half annoyance, I lay down, determined to keep 
awake until morning, but poor, weak, tired, human 
nature got the mastery, and I was soon asleep. It 
might be I slept ten minutes, or one hour, or two 
hours, for sleep has no hour glass, ere I awoke, and 
relieved myself from the horrors of a dream, in whick 
was mingled m one phantasmagoria, Indians, whoops, 
yells, gory scalps, gleaming tomahawks, blood-shot 
eyes, and vain efforts to escape a terrible doom, but 
my ease of mind was of momentary duration, for with 
my right hand, I grasped a human hand, cold as 
death, I need not say I clung to it with a death grip, 
and jumped savagely at my foe, determined to keep 
one arm from mischief at anv rate. I was in that 
peculiar state, of part terror, part desperation, and 
part savageness, which men often feel when conscious 
of being in a dangerous position, and only partially 
awakened to a true sense of it. As I stumbled for- 
ward, I fell down into a crevice about five feet in 
depth, and lost my hold of the unknown hand. I 
was sure the enemy was about to spring upon me in 
my defenceless condition, and in my desperation, I 
made one bound to the surface, which I no sooner 
reached than I received a severe blow in the chest, 
which almost felled me. I, however, sprang for- 
ward, and was struck again ; I threw my arms in 
front of me to grapple with my opponent, but felt 
nought but air, and, strange to say, I was incapable of 
moving a step in advance. I had never been a believer 


in ghosts, since the boyish dnys I had heard the 
wierd stories, from the mouth of a grandfiither, beside 
the roaring fire of a highland home, but a strange 
feeling came over me, that, after all, the supernatural 
visitations might be true,and I was about to be 
immolated in a lonely spot, at wizard hours, for a life- 
time of infidehty. In this state, I sat down, exhausted, 
and " came to myself." In doing so, I solved the 
enigma, removed my doubts, and allayed my fears, by 
finding out that in sleeping under a pine tree, which 
was full of pitch, and surrounded by himps of it, 
my hair became entangled in it, for the legs of my 
boots were my pillow, and, when I turned my 
head, it pulled my locks. Proof: there was an ounce 
of it sticking in my hain. I found the cold hand again 
in my lap, for I had rested my head on my arm, 
in my sleep, and thus stopped the circulation of the 
blood, and consequently sensation. In my furious 
exit from the pit, I had struck my breast against a 
sapling stump, about four feet high, and feeling be- 
yond it, in my excitement, it barred my advance, and 
yet I encountered no tangible opposition, as I threw 
my arms in the air beyond the barricade. I need 
scarcely say that I patiently waited with open eyes 
for daylight, giving the Indians a wide berth, and 
chuckling inteimittently over the night's adventures. 
Many a " spook" story, originates from terrors un- 
unexplained, and such imaginary fears, never ration- 
ally accounted for, and thus a morbid nourishment is 
provided for young, tender,and susceptible brainhood. 


CARLYLE is no copyist. He seems to write as if 
determined to stamp his individuality not only 
on his ideas, but also on his words. Some of his newly- 
coined terras .[^are passably euphonious ; but, many 
of them are as stiff and bristly as the hair on his head, 
or the bristles on his chin, and as difficult of manipu- 
lation by any hand but his own. Hence his method 
is'called " Carlylese." I do not think that this style 
is his hobby, and that he prides himself in being odd 
in it, but its uniqueness had been forced by torrents 
of ideas crowding upon him for utterance, or expres- 
sion, and finding no words to express fine shades 
of meaning he invented of necessity, a vocabulary 
of his own. His intimate knowledge of foreign 
literature, especially German, gave' him a facility in 
this respect, not often seen in English authors, and 
when paucity of words threatened to check the on- 
ward flow ot ih.Q facile pen, his ingenuity came to the 
rescue, in some barbarism, which his paternity has 
stamped with transitory acceptation. Sir William 
Hamilton, Kant, or Cartes, and such like metaphysic- 
ians, had to resort to a nomenclature of their own, 
but their studies required words to express the finest 
shades of thought, and to prevent their followers 


Irom pursuing a will o' the wisp, in fierce logomachy, 
they provided this antidote, m reducing to strict 
forraulai of thought, systems in which certain words 
had definite and unchangeable significance. Carlyle 
had this dogma of the schools partly in view, but, 
often in perfect abandon, he sported with phrases of 
his own creation, in playfulness, and wilfulness, and 
threw them off from the mental reel, as threads of 
discourse, most easy to spin. Pa'?.doxes do not stag- 
ger him any more than his style, and notwithstanding 
these, he has rviceivcd an amount of approbation which 
no other man of to-day would command, let his senti- 
iT.ents be ever so high. His defiant tone, his kick- 
over, without ** by your leave " all conventionalities 
in styles, — his vigorous thrusts at " castles in the air " 
of moralists, philosophers, historians, and essayists, — 
his unsparing dissection of all humbug, — and his 
mixture of queer theories, startling truths, and mental 
oddities, command attention, from friends, onslaughts 
from enemies, and consequently gave followers, who 
swear by him, and who defend him with a vigour 
and heat, not at all commensurate with the struggle, 
nor necessary to the issue at stake. He *' pitches 
into " Luther, Knox, and Cromwell, as vigorously and 
unsparingly as he would into Pio Nono, or Henry 
VIII. or ''Napoleon the Less." Systems of religion, 
as such, he has no veneration for, and his love of 
the antique is summed up, in its usefulness to conduce 
to historical knowledge, or to contibute a factor in the 
aesthetic cultivation of man. " Truth " he puts into 
his crucible, and if it contains " earnestness '' — ail is 


well. Moral superiority only requires in its composi- 
tion "sincerity " to pass the coin as genuine. Sincerity 
is the soul of ethics. Zeal is his greatest test for 
work. " The gospel of labour " and " the sacredness 
of work," are to him phases of religion. The man, 
who in propei time and place, is industrious, is so far 
religious. This view has been called " ravings of a 
self-deluded prophet." I am not sure of that, for 
amotion or sensation is not religion, neither is it 
mere sentiment, for if so, Robespierre, the monster, 
was u good man, because he could applaud the trage- 
dies of CorneiDc, and be melted by the pathos and 
eloquence of Racine, and so cooly, and with a vamp- 
irish zest cause the guillotine to clank ominously over 
human heads, and decapitated bodies, and make the 
gutters of Paris run to overflowing with human blood. 
There was no active principle of good in his heart. 
Intelligence alone is not the shortest highway to 
heaven. Physical suffering, or effort, is not a passport 
to the skies. The unity of man in its highest de- 
velopment, morally, and in all its fractions, towards a 
vicarious sacrifice, is the keystone ot the bridge 
which spans the fearful abyss, between God and 
man — the foundation stone 01 the temple "beautiful 
on the mountains," as far as divinely supported man 
is concerned. Work then, is one of man's duties, 
as much as singing nallelujahs. " Diligent in 
business" is, in a certain sense, worship, and not pro- 
• 'ding for the household, is not only a denial of 
e faith, but is worse than infidelity. In other words 
there is no such individual as a lazy christian, pray, 


sing, and worship he ever so much. Carlyle, how- 
ever, gave work too much prominence, when he said 
in his inaugural, on being installed Lord Rector of 
the University of Edinburgh, "work is the grand 
cure of all maladies, and miseries, that ever beset 
mankind." He is doubtless erratic in his view« 
in ethics, but always practically right, so that I am 
not inclined to quarrel with him theoretically. His 
advice to students, he has carried out himself. 
'* Pursue your studies in the way your conscience 
calls honest. Count a thing known only when it is 
stamped on your mind, so that you may survey it on 
all sides with inte'ligence. Morality as regards study 
is, as in all other things, the primary consideration, 
and overrides all others. A dishonest man cannot do 
anything real : and it would be greatly better, if he 
were tied up fi'om doing any such thing." lie gives 
a severe fling at the tendency of the English, and 
American, an( let me add Canadian, ** going all 
away into wind and tongi'e." He tried oratory on 
several occasions. In 1837 he gave a course of lec- 
tures on German literature in Willis' Rooms, Lon- 
don. His audiences were not large, as the subject 
was not then as inviting as nov;^, since the Germanic 
Empire has strode into the first rank of nations. He 
followed those, by a course of lectures in the Maryle- 
bone Institution " on the history of European litera- 
ture," and promised well as a speaker. In 1859 he 
gave a course of lectures on the •* Revolutions of 
Modern Europe," a subject with which lie was con- 
versant. On the following year he delivered several 


lectures on '' Hero Worship." They had a pungency 
about them, not distasteful, and an irony and sarcasm, 
which were not the best certificat ;s, to the world of 
poor humanity, although in them the scalpel was 
applied with an unsparing hand, to the body politic ; 
they were well received, and he was urged by some 
of the best societies, and institutions of Britain to 
repeat them, but, he seemed, suddenly, to become 
disgusted with this method of reaching the public 
mind, and made his final exit from the public stage. 
He plunged con amore into literature. He was a per- 
fect book gourmand from his earliest years. I am 
not sure, but occasionally, he felt all the horrors of 
mental dyspepsia from engorgement. He says in his 
address to students " you cannot, it you are going to 
do any decisive intellectual operation — if you are 
going to write a book — at least I never could — 
without getting decidedly made ill by it, and really 
you must if it is your business — and you must follow 
out what you are at — and it sometimes is at the ex- 
pense of your health." The meaning of the sentence 
is plain, but its construction is CarJylian, In order 
that he might follow his literary employment with as 
little interruption as possible, he retired, for a time, 
to Craigenputtoch, a place fifteen miles north-west of 
Dumfries, among " granite hills and black morasses," 
In the preface to his translation of Goethe's " Lif.e 
of Schiller," he naively tells about this retreat " In this 
.wilderness of heath and rock," he says, " our estate 
stands forth, a green oasis, a tract of ploughed, partly 
• enclosed and planted ground, where corn ripens, 


and trees afford a shade, although surrounded by sea- 
mews and rough-woolled sheep. Here, with no 
small effort, have we built and furnished a neat sub- 
stantial dwelling; here, in the absence of a professional 
or other office, we live to cultivate literature according 
to our strength, and in our own peculiar way. We 
wish a joyful growth to the roses and flowers of our 
garden ; we hope for health and peaceful thoughts to 
further our aims. The roses, indeed, are still in part 
to be planted, but they blossom already in anticipation. 
Two ponies which carry us everywhere, and in the 
mountain air, are the best medicines for weak nerves. 
This daily exercise, to which I am much devoted, is 
my only recreation, for this nook of ours is the 
loveliest in Britain— six miles removed from any one^^ 
likely to visit me. Here Rousseau would have been 
as happy as on his island of Saint Pierre. My town 
friends, indeed, ascribe my journey here to a similar 
disposition, and forbode me no good results. But I 
came here solely with the design to simplify my way 
of life, and to secure the independence through which 
I could be enabled to remain true to myself This bit 
of ground is our own ; here wo can live, write, and 
think, as best pleases us, even though Zoilus himself 
were to be crowned monarch of literature. Nor is 
the solitude of such great importance, for a stage- 
coach takes us speedily to Edinburgh, which we look 
upon as our Biitish Weimar.. And have I not, too, 
at this moment, piled upon the table of my little 
library a whole cart-load of French, German, Ameri- 
can and English Journals and periodicals, w hatever 


may be their worth? Of antiquarian studies, too, 
there is no lack. From some of our heights I can 
descry, ^bout a day's journey to the West, the hill 
where Agricola, and his Romans left a camp behind 
them. At the foot of it, I was born, and there both 
father and mother still live to love me. And so 
one must let time work. But whither am I wan- 
dering ? Let me confess to you, I am uncertain about 
my future literary activity, and would gladly learn 
your opinion respecting it ; at least, write to me 
again, and speedily, that I may ever feel myself united 
to you." Many years have passed away since such 
warm outgushings were poured out : and Carlyle has 
more than realized his fondest hopes in regard to 
literature, and stands i)re-cminently uniqne in terse, 
vigorous, and quaint writing. He wrote the above to 
his German friend, and co-labourer before the era of 
railroads, and before his geniub became victorious; 
but *• coming events were casting their shadows be- 
fore." Like De Quincey, he never "cribbed and 
cabined " his ideas by scarcity of words. If the 
orthodox word did not trot out at the point of his pen, 
he coined one and stamped it as current gold. Such 
showed his idiosyncracies, and inventive faculty. All 
is instinct with life, breathed into the nostrils of his 
creation, by a master-spirit. In his life of Frederick 
the Great, we might quote from every page to prove 
this. Take, for example, such a sentence as this 
of the great Emperor at the battle of Leuthen : — 
" Indeed, there is in him, in those grim days, a tone 
as of trust in the Eternal, as of real religious piety 


and faith, scarcely noticeable elsewhere in his his- 
tory. His religion, and he had, in withered forms, 
a good deal of it, if we look well, being almost al- 
ways in a strictly voiceless state -nay, ultra voiceless 
or voiced the wrong way, as is too well known." At 
the beige of Al.T.utz, a convoy train of Prussians is 
attacked by Austrians in a rocky defile, and ''among 
the tragic wrecks of this convoy there is one that 
still goes to our heart. A longish almost straight row 
of Prussian recruits stretched among the slain : what 
are these ? These were seven hundred recruits coming 
up from their cantons to the wars. See how they 
have fought to the death, poor lads, and have honor- 
ably, on the sudden, got manumitted from the toils 
of life. Sjven hundred ot them stood to arms this 
morning ; some sixty-five will get back to Troppau. 
That is the invoice account. There they may lie, 
with their blonde young cheeks, beautiful in death." 
At the battle ot Zorndoft" both Russians and Prussians 
had exhausted their ammunition, and " then began a 
tug of deadly massacring and wrestling, man to man, 
with bayonets, with butts of muskets, with hands, even 
with teeth, such as was never seen before. The 
shore of Wertzel is thick with men and horses who 
have tried to cross, and lie swallowed in the ooze." 
Frederick laid siege to Dresden all winter, and here is 
a picture in a few words : — " It was one of the 
grimmest camps in nature ; the canvas roofs mere ice- 
plates, the tents mere banctuaries of frost. Never 
did poor young Archenholtz see such industry in 
dragging wood-fuel, such boiliag of biscuits in bro- 


ken ice, such crowding round the embers to roast one 

side of you while the other was freezing." Here is a 

character of Frederick the Great in a few sentences, 

in speaking ol his letters written to Voltaire, and 

others of his friends : — " The symptoms we decipher 

in these letters, and olherwise, are those of a man 

drenched in misery ; but, used to his black element, 

unaffectedly defiant of it, or not at the pains to defy 

it ; occupied only to do his very utmost in it, with or 

without success, till the end come." A sudden assault 

is made on the Austrians at Siptitz, and here are hor. 

rors photographed: — "It was a thing surpassed only 

by Dooms-day ; dangerous rage of noise risen to the 

infinite ; the boughs of the trees raining down upon 

you with horrid crash ; the forest, with its echoes, 

bellowing far and near, and reverberating in universal 

death-peal, — comparable to the trump of dooni." At 

this time three historic women were supposed — and 

rightly, too — to hold in their hands the destinies of 

Europe. The one was Maria Theresa of Austria, 

whom Frederick was robbing of her possessions ; the 

second was the Duchess of Pompadour, the mistress 

of Louis XV., of France, who hated Frederick with a 

perfect hatred, on account of a former insult, and was 

thus an implacable enemy : the third was Catherine II. 

of Russia, a sort of syren fiend, who lured to destroy, 

and, like her namesake, Catherine de Medicis, had no 

conscience, whom Carlyle calls in sarcasm "a s/ie-Lou'is 

XIV.," and which was decidedly complimentary to 

Aer. These three women, Carlyle thinks, were the 

prime movers in those wars, and kept Europe in 


turmoil — in fact, in a perfect maelstrom of agitation 
and blood." Numbers of such quotations might be 
given; but inall, /xru/mr//)', idiocyncrasy stand forth 
prominently. He gathers stores of words of the 
most suggestive kind, and throws them together 
with a prodigality which would have excited, to envy, 
amiable and kind Dr. Johnson. At the same tune, 
there is perfect method in this torrent of verbiage, 
which shows systematic writing, and his extensive 
erudition. " No pent up Utica contracts his powers," 
and no orthodoxy of style cramps his energies. In 
this latitude of thouglTt does he show himself a true 
son of genius. No creeds terrify him; no threatened 
ostracism, from pseudo-critics, appal him; no shib> 
boleth can attach him to party in church or state. 

As a lover of literature he ranges its wide domains, 
and seeks sweet council in its sequestered nooks, 
as well as on the altitude of its hiujhest mountains, 
hymning in rude,but sterling stanzas, songs of nature, 
not circumscribed by the garden-plot of a bigt>ted 
sectary, nor hedged in, by almost omnipotent public 
opinion. He fdls, to some extent, Pascal's idea: "You 
tell me that such a person is a good mathematician, 
but I have nothing to do with mathematics ; you 
assert of another that he understands the art of 
•war, but I have no wish to make war u[)on any- 
body. The world is full of wants, and loves only 
those who can satisfy them. It is false praise to 
say of anyone that he is skilled in poetry, and a bad 
flign when he is consulted solely about verses." 
Carlyle was teo ardent a believer in the potency of 



books. They were to him, par cxceUence, the 
principal vehicle for human thought, to pernieate,and 
influence, and mould the masses. All other motive 
powers were subordinate, and secondary. Hence 
his statement that "the writer of a book is he not a 
preacher, preacliing not in this parish, or that, but 
to all men, at all times and places ? He that can 
write a true book, to j)ersuade England, is not he 
the bisho]) and archbishop, the priniate of England, 
and of all England ? I many a time say, the writers 
of newspapers, pamphlets, poems, books — these are 
the real working, effective church of a modern 
country." Such utterances drew down on his head 
severe animadversions, and were styled rank hetero- 
doxy. Are they true ? Let the moralist or the 
christian say, (if he thinks the matter over,) which 
would be txie worst alternative for Christendom, to 
have all literature •' wiped out," and to trust only 
to 7>iva voce instruction, or to kee|> the mighty 
presses only, going on *' true books," pamphlets and 
tracts, and Hood the world with them ? Let some 
country debatin<:^ school decide the question. Both 
are mighty to influence public opinion, and both 
will exist in all civilized countries — co-workers in a 
mighty struggle of riglit ngainst wrong. Yet, has 
not the immortal work of the mighty dreamer done 
more cumulative good, and will do so to latest gene- 
rations, than all his preaching ? The congregations of 
such, as he, augment, as ages roll on, through magic 
words, and through the witchery of the potent story. 
It keeps, and shall keep, young and old, rich and 


poor, wiso and ignorant, spell-boiuul by tlio simple 
atul bewitchiiiu; portraiture ot Christian, anil liis 
famil}'. ('arlylo was not far wroni^, after all, in 
saying " tho i)rio.stliood of the writers of such books 
is above otiier priest-hoods," it' inlluonco for good 
is any test of Divine approval. Ho throws no dis- 
credit upon the sacred ministry, in its hi<;li vocation, 
nor inider-estimatus its work, and jjowcr ; but its in- 
llucnco i;j augmented a thousand-fold, by the riixht 
arm of literature. The orator has slain his thous- 
ands, but tho author !us tens ot" thousands. The 
orator strikes tlic i)opular heart, but once in a while, 
and, with ebbing pulsations, the intluence soon die; ; 
but tlie vmter, in his published eflorts, returns to 
the assault, and if genius and mental power com- 
mand tho mighty i^halan?:, ho moulds ami subdues 
by reiteration. Carlyie believed this, and aUhough 
his ])arents were anxious for him to study for the 
chm-ch (;ind wliat numbers of Scottish parents do 
feel the samo way in regard to their sons ?) yet, 
theological tomes, catechisms, creeds, ^Ecumenical 
councils, and hermeneutics had no cliarms, as such, 
for him. General literature delighted him ; and to 
satisfy his insatiate greed, he eagerly studied tho 
ancient classics, and several of the modern languages, 
especially the German. It is g^-nei-ally believed 
that Herr Teufelsdrockh, the character in his '• Sar- 
tor Eesartus," had his own experiences, only in 
romance, and that the honest Dutchman is Carlyie 
sub rosa ; and in his college days he tells — " by in- 
stinct and happy accident, I took less to rioting^ 

l8o I'F.X I'lfOrOGRAPHS. 

tlinn thiiikinjr, and ro-idiDp:, wlii(ili latter also I was 
free to do. Nay, from tlio clm.os of ili;it library 
(Etlinburijli), I Kiurcociled in fishing uj) more books 
than had Vieen knov.n to tlio very kooperK thereof. 
The foundation of a literary life was hereby laid. I 
loaned, on my own ntrengtli, to read fluently in al- 
most all cultivated hiiuruaL^cs, on all subiVcts 
find sciences." Such being the case, he kne\v that 
his dibcursive tastes in roadin;^ would make him 
an indifTerent divinity student, and with honest 
intent he followed the bias of his mind, and entered 
the more congenial walks of liti-rature. His ''Life 
of Schiller " was very popular in Germany, and not 
only received the hii):]iest encomiums from Goethe, 
but Avaa translated by liim, and in his preface lie 
did the author full justice. " It is pleasant to see," 
said Goethe to a friend, " that the Scotcli are giv- 
ing up their early pedantry, and are now more in 
earnest and more profound. In Carlyle, I vene- 
rate most of .'ill the spirit, and character, wiiich lie 
at the foundations of his tendencies. He looks to the 
culture of bis ov,-n nation, and, in the literary pro- 
duction of other countries, which he wished to 
make known to his eoutemporaries, pays less at 
tentiou to art, and genius, than to the moral eleva- 
tions, which can bo attained through such works. 
Yes, the temper in which he works is always ad- 
mirable. What an earnest man he is, and how he 
studied our German ! He is alraont more at home in 
cur literature than wo ourselves are." Both the 
Tvorks referred to, had at first to go a-begging for 


publislicrs, and " Sartor IJosartiiB " was at last jmb- 
lislicd in *' Frasur's }il vgazinc " in 18;M, by instal- 
ments ; and so obtue;o was tbo British j)ul)lic at 
this time, that it ivU dead — so to «poak — upon the 
market, II was not approciated ; but our iiniericau 
cousins saw its merits, and printed it in book-form. 
It immediately took its j)!acc v/ith the permanent 
literature of the dav. Tiiree vears il'ter this he 
])ublisliL>d " TIio French Eovolution," and append- 
ed to the title his real name. This book had a moder- 
ate sale. Ho then sent out rapidly books, and 
pampldetB, on social questions, such as his *' Shoot- 
ing Niagara," " Past and Present," " Laterday 
Pamphlets." These commanded a great amount 
of notice. They arc pointed, racy, sharp, and some- 
times savage. They show no pity to shams, hum- 
bugs, and impostures. lie probes to the bottom 
all ''guano-mountains of cant and rubbish," and 
shows no mercy to the hypocrite, be he pseudo-samt, 
reformer-crier, or citizen-parasite. In 1819 he pub- 
lished *' OUver Cromwell's letters and speeches, with 
elucidations." This sti'ucl: a key in the English 
heart ; and although the author was born north of 
the Tweed, he sprang into more thin passing notice, 
south of it, and was stamped, as a somebody, 
above mediocrity, by his countrymen, long after 
foreigners knew and appreciated the canny Scot. 
Other works of a minor nature he wrote, but his 
crowning labour is doubtless "The History of Frede- 
rick the Groat." He trod ground, every foot of which 
he knew. The Teutons were national models ; and 


it must be acknowledgecl in the light of the events 
of 1870, that they have striking and distinctive 
acteristics. It Heems to me that the great blemish 
of this liistory is, his "hero-worship" of Frede- 
rick. Historians are not romancers ; and if the 
truth must be told, the warrior Fritz was devoid 
of moral principle. He was treacherous to the last 
degree. Diplomacy, in his eyes, had no ethics, and 
had no virtues, except iu success. His creed was 
that of the father to the son, — '* Get potatoes 
honestly, if you can ; but if not, at any cost ^jei 
potatoes ! " Sucli men as Abbot make dcnii-gods of 
such as I7apoleon, or Headly will make a ripe saint 
of Cromwell ; but we expect such abortions from 
"small fry." Cavlyle could not possibly ; in his re- 
searches, find auiijht but love of conquest, military 
jjjlory, and the restlessness of a perturbed spirit, 
ill at e!ise with itself, the mainsi)rings of action in a 
man whose indomitable energy covered a multitude 
of sins. Carlyle's history shows that portraiture, and 
should make Fritz )<o/ahero, but only aconqueror,by 
chance, by energy, by cunning, and by deceit. This 
history shows, however, wonderful research, and is 
written in a trenchanr, quaint, and epigrammatic 

It seems so difficult for historians to avoid a 
bias for some one or more of the characters, about 
whom they write. They seem to forget, that thoy sit 
as judges on the past, maintain a strict neutrality, 
sifting all evidence, and pronouncini^ sentence ac- 
cording to the evidence, be it, for the weal or woe 


of frieuils or foes. Even genial Sir Walter Scott in 
histories, and romances founded thereon, must show 
his political proclivities, and, indeed, they crop out 
on every page. Frederick may liave been a groat 
military general, but, many of his most important 
battles were won, according to his own account, by 
the blundeiing of the enemy. He tried to rob 
poor Maria Theresa of her possessions, and while 
in close alliance witli France, (two robbers eager 
for the spoils,) coquetted, unknown, to ally, with 
Austria, against his best friend, and thus was always 
found " faithless and faithful," for his troops en- 
dured toils, and fatigues untold, and performed 
prodigies of valour, to the very last, and asked no 
questions, as to the reason why. Carlyle's history, 
however, in spite of its faults, is unique. It has 
marvellous force, originality, and untrammelled 
" thought, and such works of his have found, in style, 
manv copyists, as the classic purity of the writings of 
Steele, Addison, Johnson, or Blair, fiu'nished for 
many long years, the models of successive scribes. 
Carlyle has doubtless passed by his best days for lui 
is now (Dec. -1th, 1871,) in his seventy-sixth birth- 
day, and,for the last few years, he has seldom appear- 
ed in public, or in print. His remarkable inaugural 
address, at Edinburgh, will probably be his last, 
and as far as I know, his letter last year on German 
matters, has closed his career as a writer on politics. 
He is, however, " a worthy Scot " of whom his 
country may be proud, and who has entered the 
lists successfully, in an age, remarkable for powerful 


pens, and in a country where giants in intellect 
have to be, to snccced, not simply chiefs, but chief- 
est among the sons of Anal:. I regret that I have 
never cast my eyes on Carlyle, so as to be able to 
give of Inm a personal notice, but if his picture does 
not belie him, he is small of stature, wiry in body, 
with a good deal of the nervous in his constitution. 
His nostrils arc well dilated as if he smelled battle 
from al'tir. He has bushy eye-brows, and large 
eyes, apparently grey, and keenly observant. His 
face knows no razor, and his hair points " a' the 
airts the wind can blaw," — beard and locks being as 
bristly as a Scotch thistle. There is nothing re- 
markable in his physique, except, that at a glance he 
shows endurance, and at first his countenance would 
appear as that of a " dour " man, but it is only an 
appearance, for he ])ossesses a great fund of humour, 
and is kindly wilhal, but has the reserve of his 
countrymen, with strangers, that is, a sort of 
" canniness." The followino-, going the rounds of 
the jiapers is characteristic, whether true, or not : 

A fresh and good thing of Carlyle's.— Travelling north 
durinsj the past summer i i a cart, comfortably with aristo- 
cratic travelling company, the conversation turned upon 
Darwin and his theory. The ladies argued the "pros" and 
"cons" in a womanly manner, looking to Mr. Carlyle 
for approval. He gave every " fairc ladye" the same 
kindly nod and smile, no doubt remembering Josh. 
Billing's saying, " Wooman's inflooence is powerful — 
espechila when she wants enny thing." One cf the party^ 
after she had given out, said : " What ao you think, 
Mr. Carlyle .''" His cool reply was, '* Ladies yoi: have 
left nothing to be said." Oh, yes ; but what is your 
opinion .-* You have not given us that." Carlyle was 


too far north to be sold. His witty reply v.r.s, '* For- 
myself I am disposed to take the words of the h'ialmist, 
* Man was made a little lower than the angels."' 

So is the letter to Thomas Hughes, M.P., on beiug 
requested to contribute a copy of his works to a 
library, forming in Chicago since the fire : 

No. 5 Chkvknk Row, Chehea, 

Nov. 12, 1071, 

Dear Huc.kes :-— 

Forgive me that I have not sooner answered your 
friendly, cheery, and altogether pleasant iiitlc note. I 
suppose Burgess would have told you my object ioiis to 
the project ; that it seemed to me superilucjus, not 
practicably by the methods he proposed (for the gifts of 
all the books of living authors will go for very lUi le in 
such an enterprise) and, third and worst, that it wore on 
the face of it a visible pick-thank kind of character- a 
thing gi'eatly to be avoided, both in Chicago and h.cre ! 

These objections do not vanish on reflection, but on 
the contrary gather weight. Nevertheless, if you and the 
literary world feel nothins^of the like and the project does 
take tire and go on, it continues certain that my poor 
contribution of a copy of my books shall not by any 
means be wanting. 

Believe me alway, yours, with many regards 



IT was a terrible night of storm, that 17th of 
November, 1857, as I was toasting my toes, be- 
fore a peat fire in the parish of Cabrach, Scotland. 
The Deveron was pouring down dark floods of 
seething waters from tlie mountains. The wind rattled 
at the windows as if it v/ould be in, and sang as it 
eddied round the corners, and down the wide "lum," 
a dirge over the departed glories of summer. A 
''dour" night had settled down on the hills, and there 
seemed a sullen determination, in the storm, to hold 
— for one night at least — high revelry. Peal after 
peal of thunder ever and anon reverberated down the 
valley, and over the mountains, with an intensity of 
sound, I had not heard excelled,except on the Andes, 
in Central America. 

McPhail, an oVl man of seventy years sat on the 
•other side of the ''ingle," awe struck and pale. As 
the tempest moderated, he said: "This fearful storm 
reminds me of the night of 'Black McPherson,' in 

I urged him to give me the particulars to which he 
referred, and they were as (ollows : — 

"During the latter part of the Napoleonic wars, 
men were scarce for soldiers in Britain. The Ameri- 


can war of 1S12, and the wars rnging on the Continent 
of Europe, in which Britain was embroiled, drained 
the surplus male population of the British Isles. 
The press-gang was brought into rtHjuisition. Those 
who were not found with some implement of industry 
in their hands, belonging to their masters, or to them- 
selves, were seized, and forced into the army or navy. 
Oftentimes an ambush was laid at church doors, and 
as the congregation filed out from the house of God, 
all the able-bodied men were suddenly, and ruth- 
lessly,dragged away from their families, probably never 
to see them more. A reign of terror prevailed every- 
wheie ; and servants, fearing every bush, and dyke, 
and ditch, lest it hid a soldier, carried implements of 
labor in their hands, to tlieir meals, and even to their 
'beds, fearing to be taken unawares. 

To the Highlands of Banffshire and Inverness, a 
'Captain McPherson was sent, by Government, to re 
cruit the Highland regiments abroad, by fair or foul 
means. He was nicknamed " Black McPherson ;" 
but, whether this name was given to him, from being 
of a dark and forbidding appearance, or from his 
cruelty and ferocity in the unpopular work in which 
lie was engaged, it is impossible at present to tell. 
Although he was a native of Strathspey, and a brave 
man withal, yet he was followed everywhere by execra- 
tions from old and young. The remaining ^^^ of 
men, he brought with him, was composed of kindred 
spirits, and spared no fit man, upon whom their 
hands fell. They knew nothing but military obedi- 
ence, and duty, in all their inflexible exactitude. 



A widow with an only son, her sole sui)port in 
her declining years, resided at this time in the 
parish of Knockando, near the well-known ferry 
on the river Spey, which crosses over to Inveravon. 
He was at work in the latter parish, but stealthily 
went over on Sabbath evenings to visit his aged 
mother. On one of tliese evenings as he was returning 
home to Jiis work, his mother accompanied him to 
the ferry, and saw him safely across the river 'I o her 
horror, no sooner had he step])ed on land than four 
men, heiuled by the JJiack Captain, sprang from 
behind the boat-house, and commenced dragging 
David St?achan away. The widow fell upon her 
knees, and, in heart-rending cries, implored the Captain 
to release her only stay, and support, in her declining 
yearii. She was only answered with curses. Frantic 
with the commingled passions of rage, and grief, and 
seeing thai, the stern man was inexorable and deaf 
to all entreaty, and dead to all the redeeming feel- 
ings of our common humanity, the widow became be- 
side herself in agony, and with uplifted hands, to high 
heaven, poured forJi fearful imprecations and male- 
dictions on the head of the offending man. 

"May a blessed ray of happiness or hope never 
dispel the darkness from your perjured soul," said 
she. ''May the bitter pangs of a guilty conscience 
be yours through life, in death, and during eternity. 
May a curse blacker than that branded on the brow 
of Cain, and more hopeless than that burned by 
God's avenging finger on the faces of the fallen angels, 
fall upon you, and to your lot, ceaselessly and unre- 

WHAT V/AS IT ? 189 

mittlngly. May the Prince of Darkness, of whom you 
are a faithful transcript, claim this base part of his 
heritage, in this world, and doom you unshriven to 
black despair, and endless tormcni. Amen, and 

Alarmed at her own vehemence, and at tlie fearful 
utterances, which seemed like prophecy, she fell 
powerless and grief-stricken to the ground ; while 
a cry of bitter irony, from the lips of the hard- 
hearted man, w-as the only reply 

Years passed away, and in the excitement of the 
times the scene of that Sabbath evening was almost 
forgotten. The son's bones festered, whitened, and 
rotted on the field of Waterloo; while "The Im- 
mortal'' was a putrescent corpse, in all earthly, on 
Rocky St. Helena. The widow died broken-hearted, 
and was buried by the parish. McPherson returned 
to his native glen — not now dreaded as of yore, with 
his trained bands, but wealthy from, it was said, not 
only foreign booty, but also from the bounties paid 
for the capture of his countrymen, as recruits, for the 
consumption of the battle-field. He had money, 
drove fast horses, kept hounds, boasted of numer- 
ous retainers, and held high revelry with his friends, 
in whose eyes riches covered a multitude of sins. 

The second year of his retirement from the army he 
was out with a few friends hunting in the forest of 
'Olenfiddich. A " bothy" had been erected in a se- 
questered glen, for the shelter of his company, dur- 
ing the sojourn on the hills. One ot his trusty serv- 
ants was sent forward, as night began to fall, to pre- 


pare supper for the hunters. He related afterwards, 
that, as he was thus engaged, strange noises were 
heard in, and around the house. He was so frightened 
that he went several times to the door to effect his 
escape, but a large black hound barred hh exit. 
At last, the arrival of the party allayed his fears ; after 
in(juiry from his fellow-servant:;, he found out that 
they had neither seen nor heard anything unusual, 
and he at last supposed himself the subject of a strong 

While at supper, a sharp and powerful knock was 
heard at the door, so imperative in its reiteration, 
in that lone place, and at that unusual hour, as to 
startle the stoutest of the i)aity. Another servant 
was sent by the captain to the door, to answer the 
noisy summons. He soon returned, with a message 
from the visitor tor the attendance of McPherson 
at the door. With a growl of dissatisfaction, the 
captain obeyed ; and after a (cw words had "passed 
between the parties, they withdrew from the door, 
closing it after them. The supper was ended ; but 
yet the murmur of voices could be heard, as if the 
parties were in earnest conversation. This strange 
acting renewed the curiosity of the first servant, and 
on a frivolous excuse, he went into a small entrance, 
into which the outer door could swing. In peeping 
through the key-hole, he saw, in the dim moonlight, 
a tall man in dark clothing, and at his heels two 
black hounds. The stranger was laying down, in a per- 
emptory manner, some rule o. action, in regard to 
which the captain expostulated. The stranger was 

, WHAT WAS IT ? 191 


inuxoraljle ; but the only words the servant could un- 
derstand were, 'Til be here this day twelve-months 
with them, for vic,'^ said the capta'n ; and with that 
the man and his dogs disappeared in the darkness, 
down in the glen. 

The servant had no sooner resumed his seat in the 
corner, by the peat fire, than McPherson entered 
pale, but calm. He put on an air of jollity, and 
seemed to out do himselt' with convivialty. The 
usqncluiui^h, which ^vas passed freely round, had doubt- 
less a good deal to do with his hilarity. 

"A friend of mine, on urgent business, was forced 
to drive to the hills to see me to-night, and was com- 
pelled to return immediately," said he. 

This satisfied all but Davie, whose fears and sus- 
{cions were now fully roused, but who wa^ determined 

keep his own council, \ 

The night passed away, with drinking and speeches? 
toasts and songs, until the near approach of a Scottish 
morning, and then the weary bacchanals sought re- 
pose.The hunt was renewed next d:iy with addition- 
al zest, and next night found them all at their "ain 

Another year had almost rolled round, when a grand 
hunt was proposed by McPherson. The preparations 
weie extensive, and invitations were sent, so numerous, 
as to excite wonder in the whole country side. David 
was the only man, except the captain, who felt uneasy 
as the day drew near. He got nervous, and he saw 
his master was no better in that respect. 

The morning arrived — hot, and sultry, and fair, and 


with it crowds of horsesmen, hounds and gillies. 
Loud lauj^'hter, jests, snatches of song, and shrill 
whistles filled tiie hills and valleys with echoes far 
and near. 

Away tlie gay cavalcade rode until the sun had 
climbed high in the heavens, when a dark and porten- 
tious cloud ajjpeareu in the horizon. A number of 
the more nervous turned back to the nearest dwellings, 
and Davie, 'vith shaking knees, told his master, that 
one of the best hunting hounds had inadvertently been 
locked up in the kennel. His master sent him back 
for it, while the remainder of the party made rapid 
strides for the *' bothy " of last year. Davie loosened 
the hound, on his return, from a bondage he had ac- 
complished intentionally, so as to have a valid excuse 
to return, and fled the neighborhood. 

Such a niglit of storm, of lightning, and of thunder 
was never known in that country. The heavens 
and the earth seemed to be rending asunder, and 
all things being hurled into primal chaos. The 
harvests were spoiled, and the tempest hurled into the 
red earth all standing grain. It seemed as if a 
second deluge was coming, from the opened windows 
of heaven, upon the stricken earth. 

The morning opened cheerfully and serenely, — but 
not one of that devoted band ever returned alive. 
The people were alarmed, and gathered in large 
numbers m the mountains, and the site of the cabin 
was found, — but not one stone of it was left upon 
another. The bodies of mutilated men, and dogs 
>7ere found near it, in the most grotesque and horrible 

WHAT WAS rT? 193 

shapes ; but the men could not have been known 
except for the clothing. 

McPherson was found about fifty yards away from 
the foundation, stripped of all clothing, but that on 
one leg. The ilesh seemed scorched upon his bones, 
and in the shrivelled flice, and obliterated eyes, and 
singed locks, none could see a vestige of " Black Mc- 

What was it ? Was the widow's pra\er answered ? 
Did Satan come to claim his own, and was the "for 
me" a peace offering to the Prince of Darkness, in 
the oblation ot the Jlower of the country's side ? Or 
is it explained from natural causes, and all the eftcct 
of a terrific thunderstorm, whose electric power was 
seen in the destruction of the cabin, and all living in 
its embrace ? My nirrator believed strongly in the 
former explanation, and as I knew it would be "'love's 
labour lost," to try to convince him to the contrary, 
I sought my bed, and dreamed of horrible things 
happening to me, by the hands of Diabolus, or his 
imps, and awoke glad that his Satanic majesty was 
not thus employed on my corpus, nor toying ad 
libitum with my immortal essence. 



IT was customary, about twenty years ago, in 
Highland districts, to carry the bodies of deceased 
persons on bearers of wood, instead of on wheeled 
vehicles. This was necessary in many places on ac- 
count of the rocky and precipious character of the 
roads. The bearers were usually kept in the church 
or vestry for convenience. 

It was a clear frosty October day, in the year 1839, 
when John McLcod, the parish school master of 
Tomintoul, died. He had taught, and flogged, and 
scolded the growing urchins of that locality for nearly 
half a century, and many of his early pupils had 
distinguished themselves in the navy, and on bloody 
battle-fields, in the forum, and among the literati 
of their country. Would that I could wax eloquent 
on their behalf ! His dominical sway was benignant 
and patriarchal, and there was always ;x radiancy of 
graciousness about his countenance which cheered 
the falterer toiling up the hill of science, but as yet, 
not far from its foot. Well, his race was run, and his 
coffined body must be hid from sight. James Mur- 
dock, his assistant and successor, was deputed to go 
over to the " Auld Kirk " for the bearers. His 
eagerness to go was explained by the gossips at the 


wake, who stoutly asserted he was sure to pay a visit 
to the manse near by, and have a short tetc a tcte with 
Flora, the minister's daughter. He sped on his way 
and mission with all the alacrity of one whose breast 
was filled with 'love's young hopes.' Night over- 
took him on the hills, but the full moon was high in 
the heavens, and benignantly shed silvery pencils 
of glory over the heathy slopes of the looming moun- 
tains, and along the scarcely beaten track on which 
he trod. When he reached the minister's house, he 
saw a light shining through the sitting-room win- 
dow, and curiosity getting the better of his sense of 
propriety, he peeped through the lattice, and saw 
Flora stitching swiftly one of the white collars which 
he so often admired upon lier snowy neck. A gentle 
tap brought her to the door. It is rot our intention 
to chronicle the sayings of the lovers, for who wishes 
such love scenes depicted to the vjuobile vulgus ? The 
hours of night were fast wearing away, and the 
" wee short 'oor ayont the twal," — which some body 
sings about — was numbered with the past, when he 
was found scrambling over the stone wall, which 
separated the garden of the manse from the grave- 
yard, in which stood a spectre white. (These gentry 
never appear in any other color, for some good 
reason of their own.) It appeared to him of monstr- 
ous dimensions and of uncouth appearance. It mov- 
ed and moaned and sighed in apparent unquiet, so 
that it could not be a white monument made gro- 
tesque by the light of the moon. Superstitious 
by inheritance, his blood froze within him at the 


sight, for all the ghosts, wraiths, dead-candles, and 
horrid apparitions, nestling in some nook or cranny 
of his brain, came vividly to his remembrance ; and 
here was a living -evidence of their existence, for what 
else could it be? Sliding back over the wall, he 
hastened to Flora, and told the wonderful tale, 
with shaking knees, dilated eyes, and fierce gesticu- 

" Now, Murdock," said the tidy maid "what a silly 
* gouk ' you are, to be sure, it is only my father's 
white horse, which has jumped the sliles to feed 
in the yard." 

Murdock, ashamed of his cowardice, especially 
at such a time, mustered courage to march with iirm 
steps towards the author of his fears, yet, he had been 
startled, and his nerves had not fully received their 
quietus. He was now among the dead, and with 
the living — horse. It was haunted ground. Here 
was the mound of McTavish, the miser, who drove 
his only daughter from his door, because he begrudged 
her the food she ate and the room she occupied, 
and afterwards froze himself to death, for want of 
fuel to warm his shrivelled limbs. There lay the 
bones of Urquehart, of violent temper, who, in blind 
frenzy, plunged a dirk into the side of his best friend, 
and then capped the climax by hanging himself. 
Here reposed poor Nellie, who died ruined, forsaken, 
and broken-hearted, because of the ruthlessness of 
a perjured villain. There slept — it is presumed 
— Baillie Ruthven, who treasured up riches by extor- 
tion and deceit, but now his children have squandered 


them, and all that remains of him on earth are a few 
pounds of unctuous earth ; — Enough ! — but over him 
stands a splendid monument of Peterhead granite, as 
hard as had been his own heart, and on it a lie 
for an epitaph. Here lies saintly Munro, or -rather 
his remains, but his hymnal chorus of adoration is 
now echoing in celestial courts. Each green mound 
had a history, either real or mythical, and Murdock had 
heard of the tortured spirits of those departed, 
periodically haunting the scenes of their earthly sepul- 
ture. He believed that such was the case, and while 
he cogitated, his fears increased. Diabolus was always 
supposed to be lurking near churches and impreg- 
nating the air with satanic influences. He made his 
way to the church door, and finding it open, he 
entered. The bearers had been left near the pulpit, 
and Murdock determined to make a rush for the 
spot, and retreat as quickly as possible. He gathered 
up one coat tail under each arm, and fixed his blue 
bonnet firmly upon the top of his head, and then 
made the grand charge along one of the aisles. 
But alas ! for all nis plans and hopes, the enemy 
had him in his clutches, and apparently his hour of 
doom had come. He felt a painful constriction 
round the throat, which was fast suffocating him, 
but he was determined not to fall into the hands 
of the Evil One without a struggle ; yet, like the 
bewildered traveller in a morass, the more he strug- 
gled the more hi^. difficulties increased, and the tighter 
the grip beca le. He beat the air with his hands, 
and stamped the floor with his feet. He gurgled 


forth short prayers with gasping emphasis, inter- 
mingled with the creed,and snatches from the shorter 
catechism, with now and then ejaculations, which 
seemed gecond cousins to profanation. His objura- 
tions seemed of no avail, for strangulation by the 
relentless and untiring fingers of his adversary was 
increasing in intensity every moment. He made 
a rush for the door, as he supposed, but blind with 
terror he had lost his longitude and latitude. No 
matter, any way out of the church, by window, 
vestry, or door 'vould be acceptable. Over the pews 
and seats he went — now Houndering on the floor 
between them, and, anon perched on the top of them 
in vain attempts to gain his equilibrium, for his un- 
seen enemy had entangled his legs and arms in the 
meshes of this terribly mysterious agency. He was 
partially bound hand and foot. Wherever he plunged 
a bloody trail was left behind. The bonnet was gone, 
the coat and nether garments, 

''Like tattered sail * 

Flung their fragments to the gale." 

He attempted to scream but fatigue and a tighten- 
ed throat forbade it. To add to his terror, his 
adversary leaped upon his head, and scourged his face 
and body with merciless blows. These fell fast 
and furious, accompanied by unearthly screams, appall- 
ing enough to awaken the seven, or seventy and 
seven sleepers. The thought came up to his mind, 
whether it would not be better to come to terms and 
capitulate on conditions to the Enemy of souls, by 


the barter of his body and soul, for his release from 
thralqom, rather than be immolated at once, and 
never sec Flora, again. He called upon tho Prince of 
Darkness to release him and he would be his abject 
slave forever. He would seal such a contract with 
his blood, only liberate him now ; but no response 
except blows without stint, came from his Satanic 
Highness. The battle of life and death continued foul 
and fierce, and yet no truce was sounded by the 
enemy. In sheer desperation, Murdock made for 
a small glimmer of light, which met his eye, and 
which happened to be a gothic window. He plunged 
at it, and through it, on to the green sward outside, as 
a storm-tossed mariner steers for the streaming light 
from afar, which to him is a beacon of hope. A woe- 
begone creature told his " horrible tale " to an awe- 
stricken assembly, at the house of the dead, and a 
'posse comifatHs was formed of all the '' braves " of the 
vicinity to ' beard the lion in his den ' and exorcise 
him with cudgels, instead of with " book and candle." 
With slow steps, and bated breath, and dilated eyes, 
the crowd surrounded the church, and as the day 
dawned a goose, with broken legs, and a cord f^isten- 
ed to one of them, was found dangling from tho win- 
dow. The minister's wife had tethered the fowl in 
the church-)Mrd, and as the door had b^en left open 
it had found its way into the church, and sitting on 
one of the pews its cord had become entangled 
about Aturdock's neck, and in the struggle he had 
wound it round his legs and arms, until the poor 
animal was dragged upon the top of his head, and 



in its fight for liberty, had beat hirn with its wings. 
Murdock fled the country for Canada, in vtry shame, 
and saw Flora no more. If this true tale meets his 
eye, we expect to be " called out," but we have pro- 
vided pistols for tiro and wine for oni'. As poor 
Artemus would say " let him appoint the day for his 
funeral, and the corpse shall be ready." 


WE often hear the Pilgrim Fathers extolled, 
and relic worshippers go into ecstacy over a 
bit of prominent stone, on an iron-bound coast, called 
Plymouth Rock. The fact is, these wanderers had 
nowhere else to lay their heads, and, therefore, a virtue 
was made of a necessity. The poor pilgrims had 
the choice of being persecuted, hung, gibbeted, or 
burned, as an alternative to coming to America, and 
I think the choice could soon be made. But when 
they landed, and went to work, — not in enacting 
" Blue " Laws, which smelt brimstone, nor in burn- 
ing trance-wakers, or hysterical women for witches, — 
then heroism had its more perfect exploits. The stroke 
of the first axe, made by unskilful but willing arms, 
was the aggressive effort of a coming conqueror, 
and the clearing of tlie way for Westward Empire. 
It was the knell of the bell of civilization over a 
doomed barbarism ; and to this day the soimd of 
the woodman's axe, in the tangled forest, speaks 
of victory, and aggression continuously persistent, on 
the line of an advancing mighty host. We 
have often odd ceremonies at the laying of the 
foundation stone of some stately edifice, or some 
public work ; but no imposing ritual (except the 


dignity of honest labor and earnest enrleavour can 
be called such,) gave the initiatory impulse towards 
laying the deep andbroad foundations,of Anglo-Saxon 
dominion, in America. The old lo^^-houses, fast pass- 
ing away, have a charm for me. The sight of them 
conjure up in my mind myriad memories of the 
past. There is the commanding knoll, with splendid 
beechvjs and maples, the work of centuries, adorning 
the highest point of the undulating prominence. As 
the rustling leaves, in autumn, glided obliquely down- 
ward, and performed strange gyrations in the air, as 
the gusty winds ho-.vled in savagery the requiem o^ 
the departing year, I gathered the p}Tamidal beech" 
nuts — it might be — in nooks or crannies of the ground, 
or being rocked gently in the curled-up corners of 
Sere-leated cradles, or partially buried in the clefts 
of dead trees, or having refuge in the mould of 
decomposing vegetation. The merciless axe, like an 
invading foe, swept over the hill, and the fire 
finished the work of ages, leaving nought behind but 
smoking ruins and smouldering ashes. The Nor'land 
wind, so often heard in the tree-tops, but never felt, 
now remorselessly blew over the denuded hill, and 
rage at the cruel spoiler filled my juvenile bosom. 
Groups of men came, one bright spring morning, 
and stood, and looked, and studied, and measured, 
as if a second Rome was to be laid out. Logs accumu- 
lated round this focus of coming greatness; and on^a 
Friday morning the foundations of the representative 
log-house were laid in the midst of shouts, oxen, 
dogs, and christenings, with deep libations of whiskey. 


A jacketed urchin sat, on a peeled bass-wood log, 
gazing in wonderment, as notched ends were joined, 
and the fabric grew up to the rafters, and roof of 
hollow logs, having the chinked holes plastered with 
primitive mortar, made from the red clay in the bank 
down by the brook. For chairs, logs were ST)lit in 
two, placed with the flat sides upwards, and the legs 
protruding from one to four inches upwards, to keep 
us from sliding off. There were no backs to these- 
seats, and strange to say, no permanent curvatures of 
the spines of the occupants followed. The stick 
lire-place, wuh its alternate layers of mud andtiniber — 
the buck-skiti dooi-opener with its huge cross-bar — 
the rude windows, rejoicing in four liglits, fastened 
with shingle nails — the floor, with its huge rents, the 
sad traps for many bare and pattering feet, the cob- 
webbed rafters, smoky, sooty, and festooned with 
gossamer adornments of sable hue, and the merry, 
riotous mice gambolling on roof, raUers, and logs, 
holding high revelry over stray crumbs of mince- 
pie, Johnny-cake, and dai»ty biscuits, perched on 
primitive sh-^^lves along the walls. And then, such a, 
capacious fire-place, — none of your " cabined and 
cribbed " dainty "ingles," but wide eaiough to roast an 
ox. The stove abominations were as rare as the plague. 
Whoever thinks of calling a stove " our ain fire- 
side ? " Black, ugly, sickening, sultry, and head 
achatiir is its history. A cold blast of the breath o^ 
sullen Boreas in our faces, drives us to it, but we can 
be cheery near it. The rollicking, jolly company 
the ruddy cheeks, the brimful of fun, the shining 


faces have no abiding place around a stove. The 
" pale faces " are its presiding deities, and its victims 
can be counted by tens of thousands ; but the 
heat of a fire-place is wholesome. We feel its ex- 
hilarating effects in every inhalation. It is fresh and 
spiritual, for it is a diffusible stimulant. The room 
where the wide and deep chimney stands has no foul, 
pestiferous vapors lingering within its precincts, and 
no '' blues " afflicting humanity, near its cleanly swept 
hearth. The stove in its heated blackness, produces 
sleepiness, fretfulness, and hence domestic scenes of 
hot strife ; and the sable, uncouth fire-fiend is, if 
not the cause, the occasion of it. I believe such 
changes of domestic arrangement affect the patriot- 
ism of a people. The thoughts of a cheery home 
brace up the heart, and nerve the arm. We are 
ready to fight for our " altars and hearths,'' but 
stoves have no hearths worth fighting for, and it takes 
the poetry out of the thing to speak of *' getting our 
backs up " about our altars and our stoves. The as- 
sociations of a family circle gathered around a roaring 
fire, in winter, are potent for good. The harmless 
jests of the teened youngsters — the tales of scenes, 
on ilood and field, of the white-haired sire or matron, 
so intensely real, as to make the listeners cower in 
mortal terror, even at the chirp of a mouse — the 
popping of nuts, and their sudden collisions, or di- 
vorces, suggestive of life's episodes — the dreamy 
gaze into glowing coals, and the "bigging castles in 
the air/' seeing towers, minarets, gorgeous halls peopled 
with soldiers in scarlet, or v/eird beings in gossamer 

" AULD LANCx SYNE." 205 

garments, with ** world's wombling up and down, 
bleezlng in a flare," and then being brought back to 
the real, by a punch in the ribs, of the most vigorous 
kind, from a fun-loving member of the group, are 
panoramas not to be forgotten A cheering sight it is 
to peer through the window of an old-fashioned 
log cabin, in a wintry night, on such a circle, near 
Christmas time. It may be a re-union of the family. 
The big black-log lies like a sleeping giant in the 
back-ground, with a fiery, red abdomen, prominent 
and rotund. The forcstick crackles, sputters, and 
shoots in sportive glee, its scintillations up the wide- 
mouthed chimney, or impudently on the laps of the 
watchers. The well-polished and brass-headed and- 
irons patiently suffer, year after year, their hot and 
hissing loads. The tongues of flame, like coy maidens, 
come up intermittently and bashfully retire ; each 
lambent spire becoming more daring than its pre- 
decessor, always hungry and devouring as a Theban 
sphinx, first licking up the palatable combustibles of 
the centre, and then'feavagely attacking, with a wither- 
ing fire, the enemy in front and rear. Like a victori- 
ous army, they march triumphantly onward, bringing 
up reserves, until sparks, smoke, fuel, and laughing 
groups disappear in the darkness. I used to watch, 
with great interest an " auld Auntie Kate," in an old 
arm chair, smoking a short clay pipe, black and 
strong. Its receptacle when not in use, was a worn 
out cavity in the wall of the chimney. She would 
put her right elbow on the arm of the chair, and 
seize, daintily, the " nib" of the bowl between the 


forefinger and tJiumb. I see her yet, in memory, as 
the eyes are dreamily j^azing, as if they gazed not, into 
the fiery embers. Puff, puff, mechanically goes the 
white curling smoke over her clean and weli-starched 
" mutch," in fantastic columns, pyramids, and cano- 
pies ; but other scenes, other days, and other figures? 
than those I conjured up, were in her day dreamS' 
Nothing but a fireside could be an appropriate back" 
ground to the picture, which would have but a Wilki® 
or a Hogarth, full of thoughts of domestic and street 
scenes, into ecstacy. The walls were adorned with 
the trophies of the chase, and with well-burnished 
implements of culinary use. 'J'he bedsteads knew not 
the turners' nor carvers' art. Tlie wind, in dancing 
weird reels down the yawning moutli of the chimney, 
made as doleful music as the wizard's dying song. But 
no happier days could be seen in lordly halls, or courtly 
palaces, than in the cabin, and its blazing ruddy light 
of home. Uncle John never could argue on points of 
theology unless he had the giant tongs in his hand, 
wheeling them in the ashes, first on one leg and then 
on another ; and as each section made its circle, you 
would almost see the arguments laid down one by one, 
in the furrow ; but when he nailed his antagonist 
with some potent argument, down came the biped 
instrument with a thud on the forestick, which made 
the sparks fly in all directions, like routed enemies- 
Women (forgive the good old English word) may 
show off their figures and graceful steps in the mazes 
of the giddy dance ; but the good old fireplace was 
an excellent training school for those ot " thirty years 

" AULl) LANG SYNE." 207 

ago." Mow nice the foot and ancle were set off near 
it,say,cookinp; a dinner ! (Of course, tliat is not now-a- 
days the work oi Au/Us.) What ingenuity was neces- 
sary to take from the pendant cliain, or swinging 
crane, the boiling potatoes, lauglung all over, or tho 
bubbling soup, with savory smell, or the singing and 
sputtering mush or porridge I AVliat dexterity was 
needed, in handling the rotund " spider" or the 
long stemmed frying-pan, with its striated sections of 
pork, lying in military order, or with venison, which 
some juvenile Nimrod had shot in the woods, as the 
fruits of such future exploits, and which fdled " l^id 
and /x'u" with its inviting perfume — I had almost wrote 
aroma ! How deftly was the knife wielded to turn 
the browned morsels, and not even a slight of hand 
actor could turn such a complete somersault of pan- 
cakes, by edging them skilfully upon the rim ot the 
pan; and then by a throw — a lorward jerk, and a back- 
ward catch — presto ! the feat is done. It looked so 
easily accomplished, I challenged a trial — result ; 
a flabby, sticky pancake, seeking a north-west pass- 
age in an angle of the chimney, and by sheer gravi- 
tation burying itself in the hot ashes, a sad warning 
to confident amateurs. The stove has economic ad- 
vantages, but cheerfulness and health are not ingredi- 
ents in the sum total. No one, unless running over 
with music, feels full of song over a stove. We may 
have exuberance from a reservoir of joy filled else- 
where. Go from its sable sides, in an autumn morn- 
ing, and sniff the fresh air, and listen to the song of 
iiniversal nature, and you feel intuitively like joining 


the chorus. Go from a hot andt sickening room 
where no firelight is seen, and where the air is sur- 
charged with thrice-heated air, into the cheering pres- 
ence of a roaring fire, and no thermometer could rise 
quicker than do your spirits under its genial influ- 
ence. These veteran houses never were cursed with 
modern bedrooms. They might be small, but that 
was compensated for, by their breezy character. A 
stray snowflake might court destruction by sailing 
through a chmk, or the spray from the rain-drop 
might dash upon the unturned faces of sleepers, but 
no pent up " dust and disease" could loiter long 
with "malice aforethought" in such an atmosphere. 
In well settled parts of Canada what a contrast ! Sep- 
timus Jinks, Esq. is wealthy, and rejoices in a fine 
mansion. It is full of bedrooms cfthe seven feet 
by eight feet style. The bed is in one corner, the 
wash-stand occupies another, and a solitary chair is 
perched in another of the angles, with a dressing-table 
in the residue nook. The light is blown out, and 
you creep round the foot of the bed, lest the half' 
opened door slyly edges itself between your outstretch- 
ed arms, and impinges unceremoniously on the end o^ 
your nose. You rnake a flank movement by th^ 
side of the bed, but if you are out of Scylla, you 
are stranded high on Charybdis, with abraded shins 
or bruised toes, or cracked knuckles. A b(-autiful 
dungeon it is. The window — a solitary sentinel of 
light — is, in the first' place, covered with paper blinds 
adorned with paintings of a high style of art, in the 
centre. One may be some lonely castle about to 


fall to pieces into a placid lake, covered wilh mon- 
strous fowls, second cousins to those which left the 
imprint of mammoth feet upon the petrified sands of 
time, and surrounded by rocks of approved pattern. 
Another is often a lonely milk-maid and a tender 
lamb ; the former not at all fashionable in dress, and 
seems to be seeking a lover, or a " babbling brook." 
Often she appears as one, 

" Who sets her pitcher underneath t'le spring, 
Musing on him, that used to fi.'l it for her 
Hears, and hears not, and lets it overflow." 

These, and sundries like these, seemed to my youth- 
ful fancy wonderful works of art. After the paper 
blinds, those models ot perspective skill, come the 
cloth ones, then damask on the one side, and lace on 
the other, or both in duplicate. On the outside are 
green Venetian blinds, and all, to ornament or keep 
the blessed light out, and the dampness in. The bed 
is unique, so high, so new, so white, so soft, so clean, 
so downy, so mountainous, so needle-worked, and 
so musty. It may be the best furnished room in the 
house, but the doors of this miniature Bastile are kept 
constantly closed, except on state occasions. Then 
bonnets, and gloves, and muffs, and spare babies are 
deposited //v; fem,on this decayed and decaying moun- 
tain of feathers. It may have had no other occupant for 
weeks. The walls ooze moisture. The windows 
condense watery" tears. The bed-clothes imbibe the 
general contagion — dampness. No such pest-room 
could be found in the cabins and log-houses of the 
first settlers, but advancing civili2:ation contmues to 



keep, in fine houses, deadly miasma, and keep out 
the air, heat, and light of heaven. Can the elderly 
reader think of an old-fashioned log-house, and by the 
law of association, not conjure up in the imagination 
the two oxen, Buck and Bright, also pioneers, in the 
dense wilderness ? They were a queer representative 
couple, and seemed to appreciate each other's good 
qualities, and were well acquainted with each other's 
habits. Buck was of a metaphysicial turn of mind. 
In chewing his cud, with his nose over the gate, he 
was always in a contemplative mood, and the dreamy 
eye showed a reverie, if not consecutive, at least pro- 
found. He had not a " crumbled horn," but m a 
Waterloo ot former days, he had been disarmed of 
part of the left one, and the other had been twisted 
in a fantastic way, on the field of Mars, until its point 
was in close proximity to an eye always watery, and 
seemingly in deep grief because of some bereavement. 
The other eye was bright in comjparison, and had a 
roguish wink and twinkle about it, as if, it had in its 
counterpart — its mind's eye — some practical joke in 
store. He was no believer in the conduct of an his- 
toric namesake, who was said to have starved to death 
between two bundles of hay of equal size r id appear- 
ance, because, being guided solely by motives, and 
these being equally and exactly powerful, he could 
not move towards either, and heroically died. Buck, 
under such circumstances, would -have showed a 
creditable spontaneousness of will, and could have 
made decisions at once. It was only on such occas- 
ions, he showed unusual activity. About noon, or 

" AULD LANG SYXE.'' _ .211 

evening, he seeired to cast a leer up from the watery 
eye to" old Sol," as if taking the sun, and wondering 
at the tardiness of his chariot wheels. When the 
dinner-horn blew, he was impatient, and shook his 
ears and huge wooden yoke, fitfully and savagely, and 
at the word of command, went at the " double quick" 
for home, drr gging his comrade almost at his heels, an 
equally willing, but less swift captive. A knowing ox 
was he. Bright was not so phlegmatic and stubborn. 
Such, when once aroused, perform prodigies of valor. 
He was nervous and irritable ; always on tlie qui vive. 
The least thing tickled his hide —from a dragon-fly 
to a thistle down ; and the least thing seemed to 
excite his fancy — from a tuft of grass in Bob's hand 
to a pinch of salt, in prospect, half a mile away. How 
similar in all these respects are man and beasl ! 
Bright had method in all he did. He knew how to 
open the rustic garden-gate, and the exact spot be- 
tween the bars to introduce his horn. No fence could 
withstand his attacks. The philosophic Buck would 
go at the fence with genius, but not with tact, and vi 
et armis attempt its overthrow, and find it as diffi- 
cult to storm, as did the " red coats " at Badajos — 
sometimes being caught by the ' crooked horn, and 
sometimes by a sudden recoil, finding himself, to his 
amazement, on his haunches, contemplating the stars 
with one, from the blow, in his eye. Bright knew 
better than use " brute force." He would commence 
systematically, at the first rail, and send it flying over 
his back, then away went the stakes in utter discom- 
fiture, and these followed by each rail, in succession, 


to the ground. He knew the salient angles of the 
fence, and never advanced upon them. He had 
strategy enough in his mind to know that the con- 
cavity was much easier to drive in, than a convexity 
and always " went for" the retiring recesses, coming 
out on the other side victorious. For him there waS 
no "pent up Utica,', if left to his own devices. His 
comrade soon learned this, and became a spectator 
of the various assaults, until a breach had been made, 
and in he came for a share of the plunder, without a 
struggle. He did not seem to have in his code of 
ethics, the rule, that ''to the victors belong the spoils." 
The sly rogue might be four hundred yards away 
from his comrade, but no sooner did the noise of 
falling rails reach his ears, than he rushed to the 
spot, as if, his motto was, " Deil tak' the hindmost." 
In the days we " went a gipsying," horses were not 
as plentiful as now. These bovine gentry were oft 
times " hitched up " to a sleigh to take a jolly load 
of jolly youths to a singing-school. The sleigh was 
none of your tricky bob-sleighs, which seem to seek 
out, in fiendish glee, all the irregularities of the roadp 
and dive nose first, into all the valleys, and snappishly 
ride over the miniature mountains, as if bent on pro- 
ducing a catastrophe. Not so the old-fashioned long 
sleighs. There is grace in their movements. When 
they mount a hillock, they seem, at the top, to hesi- 
tate for a moment whether to retreat or advance, and 
then, with a parabolic curature forward, like a gallant 
ship over a mountain wave, they plunge bow first 
into the yielding snow. Their movements are n^ver 


done by halves ; nor is there a needless bracing of 

the riders to prepare for plunges leeway and forward, 

which never come ; for with them " coming events 

cast their shadows before." See that old sleigh, 

which has almost " braved a thousand years " the 

battles of snow and storms, drawn by oxen friends, 

loaded with a merry group of juveniles, on the rampage. 

Clean straw is on the bottom for seats. No box is 

there to keep the fidgety cargo from spilling out. The 

four iron-wood stakes rise up above the heads of the 

passengers,like jury-masts, on a cast-away raft, over the 

bleak sea ; but no shipwrecked crew are they, for 

young and old, male and female, poor and rich, are 

making hills and valleys, woods and fields, vocal 

with melody and song. The oxen have an episode in 
store for the happy company. They seem to grin with 

satisfaction at the prospect. The road has a sharp 
turn in it, and, as if with common consent, and by 
one impulse, they " take to their heels," and crowding 
into one track, run the sleigh on a stump, and deposit 
the merry load in a mixed condition in the snow. 
After the debris has been collected, and an '^ omni- 
um gatherum" has taken place, there were beautiful 
casts of limbs, arms, and bodies in the snow. The 
imprint of John's gigantic paws yonder — thumbs, 
fingers and wrists. Ned's outline from occiput to 
heels — not in bold relief, but in concave beauty, true 
as life. Joe's impression was a sort of medley : it was 
evident he fell in a heap, and then gathered up his 
legs, as if giving up the ghost. Women were there, with 
expansive hoops, the centres of great circles, and left 
no foot-prints, or any other prints, upon the snows of 


time (forgive the parody), except a good mother's 
scoop-shoveled bonnet had, in its posterior part, left 
an indentation like that of a quart bowl in the snow. 
Abrasions of the cuticle, from noses, shins and elbows, 
by too close contact with somebody's heels — all for- 
given trespasses — made the sum total of casualties ; 
and none were put hors de combat in those blessed 
days of yore, when "telescoping," explosions, and such 
like evidences of progress, were for the coming race. 
Thus 1 wander on, with these retrospects, and find an 
echo of approval in some readei's breast. He and I 
passed the spot, only the other day, where the log 
house stood, and it was a ploughed field, with not a 
vestige of it remaining. The crooked primitive wood- 
side road has been obliterated, and Buck and Bright, 
by Darwin's law of selection, have given way to the 
noble horse. The joyous group is scattered "far and 
wide," from the quiet graveyard to the unknown sepul- 
ture of the distant battle-field — from the billowy wind- 
ing sheet to the monumental tomb — and from the 
haunts of infamy to the pinnacles of fame. 

The days which are past come before me with all their deeds." 

5 y M E. 

AT the little wicket-gate of the Royal Infirmary* 
Edinburgh, stood a grey-haired sentinel, as I 
entered for the first time. On the black-board in 
the entry was written by this cerberus, ** Sectio 
Cadaveris,*' "■ Dr. Balfour" and ''Mr. Syme," not Dr. — 
(in Britain the surgeon and the physician do not always 
merge their professions). Jolly, rollicking students 
are pouring in, — some to the ??ost mortem — some to 
the wards — but the greatest number to the theatre, 
where Syme was to operate. He, for the first time, in 
the history of the hospital, and the second in the 
annals of surgery, was to excise the tongue of a man, 
for cancer. The theatre — small, dingy, badly lighted 
from the north, and with break-neck seats towering 
with Alpine steepness above one another — was crowded 
to Its utmost capacity, by a tumultuous throng. Eound 
the table were about a dozen surgeons cnatting and 
discussing, but when the patient walked in, and laid 
himself down upon the operating table, a thin, dark- 
featured, withered up, and unostentatious man rose up, 
and took his coat ofi". There was no fuss about him, 
but in all his movements, there was an air of determi- 
nation, or let me rather say of resolution. That man 


could not be indecisive if he tried, for the thin and 
compressed lips, and the po.sitivrncss of manner, and 
firmness of speech, as he explained the case, declared 
that the mind was "made up," without fail, to accom- 
plish a certain work, and it was done in all its terrible 
details, and although death was the result, in this case, 
he succeeded afterwards. When Syme lectured he had 
poor utterace, — a nasal twang, and a faltering of voice, 

— not agreeable to listen to, until the ear became 
tutored to the discordant sounds. He was epigram- 
matic in his lectures, and although he indulged in no 
useless verbiage, yet there was a completeness in every 
sentence, which made his lectures a model for students 
to copy from, and made it important to catch every 
word which fell from his hps. He had not the elegance 
of diction of Simpson, or the flowery language of 
Bennett, or the smooth-flowing eloquence of a Hender- 
son. His aim was to speak to the point, with the fewest 
words possible to elucidate his subject. Hence his 
great popularity among those of his students who 
were of an analytical turn of mind, such always hate 
circumlocution, or even redundancy. Syme, like 
Simpson, was a son of the people. He came of an 
old and respectable family in Kinrosshire. and had 
an early training at the High School, Edinburgh. He 
was always reserved unless engaged in some of his 
favourite pursuits, and then he was voluble in the ex- 
treme. One of his pastimes, when quite a lad, was ex- 
periments in chemistry, and to such an extent did his 
passion for it lead him, that he was forsaken by his 
classmates for fear of explosions from his odd mixtures. 

SYME. 217 

His pocket money went for chemicals and apparatus. 
His ingenuity was often tasked to compensate for an 
empty purse, by the invention of needful a])pliances. 
He did not merely experiment as laid down in works 
written on the Sv^ience, but he was perpetually forming 
new compounds, and testing their affinities, and rela- 
tions to the danger of his life and limb, and yet he 
was only sixteen years of age. At this time he made 
a discovery for which he never received due credit, 
viz., he was the first to show how to apply practical/yf 
India rubber to its many uses. He entered tlie Uni- 
versity at ^he age of eighteen, and while attending the 
non-professional classes was articled as a student of 
Barclay and Knox — the most skilful anatomists of 
that city. They will be remembered as the surgeons, 
(especially Knox) who got into bad repute as the 
recipients of the bodies of the murdered furnished by 
Burke and Hare, who, as murderers, are remembered 
with horror to the present day. The surgeons fled to 
England to evade condign punishment from the en- 
raged populace, who accused them of being accessory 
to the crimes of the procurers. Knox died in Brighton, 
Eng., a few years ago. This flisjht compelled Syme to 
seek a new connection. He became acquainted with 
Liston, at that time attracting notice as a man of dis- 
tinction as a surgeon. They were distantly related, 
and both having a common object in view, soon be- 
came warm friends. Syme made gigantic strides for- 
ward, under Liston,and when the latter commenced to 
lecture in a private capacity, Syme was made demon- 
strator of anatomy, in his dissecting room. So popu- 
lar was Liston, and so well qualified was Syme, that 


during the first winter of this novel attempt to start 
a class in the shadow of the great schools, seventy 
students responded to the call. About two years after 
this, he was offered the office of Medical Superintend- 
ent of the Fever Hospital. This was a post of 
danger, from whicli even medical men mii'ht shrink. A 
large percentage of the medical supcri tcndents are 
carried off, sooner or later, by one or other of the 
malignant fevers, which, like a destroying angel, hang 
ominously over such a lazar house ; Syme did not 
hesitate to slep into tlie deadly breach, and was 
gladly accepted. He had only held the appointment 
four months, before he was stricken clown, and for 
six long weeks his life like Damocles' sword hung by 
a hair. His health for several years after this narrow 
escape, was not good, aud as he felt unable to dis- 
charge his duty to his own satisfaction, he reluctantly 
resigned his position. A few months after, he was 
urged to accept the position of House Surgeon to 
the Royal Infirmai}''. In this position he began to 
develope his talents as a surgeon. Cool, daring and 
yet conservative, he attracted the attention of the 
visiting doctors, and was often requested to operate in 
their stead, and sought in council by those who a 
few short months before looked down upon the boy 
of 2 2 years of age. His honours now came fast. 
Liston turned over to him his class on anatomy, and 
added to his course surgery. In the same year he 
was made a member of the Royal College of Surgeons, 
England, and a Fellow of the College of Surgeons, 
Edinburgh. At the close of 1822 he gave up his 

SVME. 219 

. position in the Infirmarv , as lecturer, and went to 
Dublin, for a time, to 8tud\ under a distinguished pro- 
fessor of that city. When he came back he started a 
class in surgery, on his own responsibility. His suc- 
cess may be imagined, when we say, that inside of two 
years his class rose from fourteen to 271, and that, 
too, with his old friends. Listen, Ferguson and Lizars, 
lecturing in the same city, in regularly organized in- 
stitutions. The triumvirate took up the cudgels against 
him, and were so bitter against their successful rival, 
that when an opening occurred in the surgical statif 
of the Infirmary, they "lobbied" the managers to 
reject his application. This enraged Syme, and the 
consequence was, that he went and rented a large and 
commodious mansion known as "The Minto House," 
and established an Infirmary of his own, and so de- 
termined were he, and his friends, that the course of 
lectures delivered should be recognized at the "Royal 
College of Surgeons, Edinburgh," that the clique gave 
■way, simply stipulating that the fees should be at a 
rate not to militate against themselves, and that bis 
class should never exceed 45 students. Their oppos- 
ition went still further, for when one of the surgeons 
of" The College of Surgeons " was appointed pro- 
fessor in the University, Syme applied for an appoint- 
ment to the vacant chair, but the triumvirate were 
still against him, and seeing they could not well keep 
him out of it, made a desperate effort to abolish the 
professorship altogether. They obtained a majority, 
but, as the scheme needed a two-third vote, they 
were foiled in this. They next brought their forces to 


bear or the candidates, and after a sharp struggle 
Syme was rejected, but next year he was elected v ith" 
out opposition, as Professor of CHnical Surgery in the 
University. At the same time Liston received an 
appointment as Surgeon to the University College 
Hospital, London, and strange to say, after Liston'* 
death, which occurred in 1847, Syme was strongly 
urged to fill his chair. Liston had, by his boldneis 
and success in operations, become famous through- 
out Christendom, and to step into his shoes was no 
easy task, yet, Syme undertook it. He gave up a po- 
sition which brought him in about $3,500 and took 
one which had attached to it, only $750, but a glamour 
seemed to come over him in this respect, and the 
fascination of introducing his method of teaching) 
and his principles and practice, into one of the largest 
Hospitals of the metropolis, blinded him to the diffi- 
culties of the situation. A current of ill feeling had 
set in against "Provincials." The medical journals 
encored the philippics of the envious. The Scottish 
invasion of distinguished medical men could be 
borne no longer, and the hue and cry grew in volume, 
and reached its climax when Syme settled in London. 
The "canny" Scot was determined not to put his hand 
to the plough, and look back. His first lecture showed 
the man. The students under his easy going prede- 
cessors ran riot. They did mostly as they liked, and 
were it not that Liston's enthusiasm in his work created 
a sort of cftprit de corps in the class, a reign of wildest 
disorder would have been the result. Syme had not 
his brilliancy, but he had great force of character, and 

SYME. 231 

at once by a direct appeal to their better nature, got 
hold of the hehn, and steered the bark safely and 
quietly. Not so with a majority of the native medical 
men of the city, and from the day he set his foot in the 
college to the day he left it, a continual hostile strategy 
was brought to bear upon him, of the most offensive 
kind. Two noble exceptions were the distinguished 
anatomists Sharpeyand Quain,with Surgeon Wormald 
of St. Bartholomew lIosi)ital. These stood by him 
through thick and thin, and all his students were 
united to a man in his behalf. They knew his worth 
and felt that, beneath a somewhat reserved manner^ 
lay a warm nature, and that in the man was a mine of 
medical lore. At last he felt th:it he was about to 
compromise his friends in this "unholy war," and gave 
up his chair after an occupancy of about eighteen 
months. He returned to Edinburgh at once and 
applied for his former chair in the University. It wa 
still vacant, but a fight had to be made for it. Th^ 
disruption of the Free had taken place, an^ 
all the bitterness of a religious controversy was evident 
on every hand. The test of religion for all public 
tochers was being hotly discussed, and although it 
was not finally carried, yet, the discussion did much 
stir up animosity against those who did not happen 
to be of the same religious faith, ^s those who were 
the principal agitators. Syme, however, triumphed 
and entered a career of professional fame, unrivalled 
at the time. 

His students hailed from all parts of the world. 
On the same benches sat Egyptians and Asiatics, 


Russians and Americans, Frenchmen and Italians, 
and numbers of his students, now scattered all over 
the habitable globe, still feel the afflatus of the master 
teacher. In his operations he was always cautious, 
more than briUiant, and delighted in being successful, 
more than in being flashy, and wanting success in the 
end.] He took as much care of his patients afterwards, 
as during the operations, and he always impressed 
upon his students the importance of careful watching 
of cases after the knife had done its work. He used 
to say, the French were good opcratorSjbut with a grim 
smile he would add, " I have been in France often, 
but I never saw a man with a wooden leg !" "When 
in the Fever Hospital he carried out the "good old 
plan" of bUstering, salivating and bleeding, for every 
disease, from nose-ache to toe-ache, but became so 
satisfied with this irrational mode of combating dis- 
ease,in all its manifestations, that he entered the battle- 
field against it, and has been ably followed by Dr. 
John H. Bennett. 7 he practice got into disrepute, 
but the fag end of the long file of converts cried out 
that disease changed in its type, and necessitated a 
change of treatment. "Ah," said Syme, "but if yc|ir 
theory be true, how does it happen that we perform 
more bloody surgical operations, than of yore, and 
notwithstanding that, and the great loss of blood, 
under conservative treatment, more recover ?" That 
was a Gordian-knot which his opponents had no 
sword to cut. At the urgent request of his students 
and admirers,he wrote several works of acknowledged 
ability, and in these he showed his common sense, 

SYME. 223 

erudition and perspicuity. He showed in a mono- 
graph on "diseased joints," that a joint diseased 
could have its atitccted part cut out and thus save 
valuable limbs. This was a gigantic stride forwards. 
Many a poor unfortunate blessed him for Uiis discovery. 
The practice and theory has been carried farther in 
the excision of joints, than he thought possible, but 
to him the initial honour belongs, and in 1816 he 
performed the operation, for the first time, and success- 
fully. He went farther still in his practice, and cut 
out the whole shoulder-blade, in disease, and yet left 
a serviceable arm, not to speak, of the preservation of 
life. Nor did he stop here, for he often cut out part 
and even the whole of the lower jaw in disease, and 
he followed up this, by excising the whole of the 
upper jaw, which even the boldest surgeons declared 
to be impossible, and preserve life. He proved the 
practicability of it, by numerous examples. In the 
spring of 1847, a man came to him with a very large 
bony tumour on the collar bone. It was so large as io 
impinge on the vessels and nerves of the neck, but 
Syme effected a radical cure, by unjointing the entire 
bone, and in ten days the man went on his way re- 
joicing. In 1832 Syme published a work on surgery. 
There were few medical works in those days, and the 
most of them were valuable for their antiquity more 
than for their usefulness. Syme's book was a god- 
send to the surgical students of Britain, and even 
America. It was the quintessence of wisdom, and 
contained, in a few words, lessons of instruction, 
which were not a mere jumble of words, but almost 


proverbs on surgery. I remember how delighted I was, 
only a lew years ago, to re-peruse his book, notwith- 
standing I had Miller, Pirie, Druitt and Gross at my 
elbow. He was a bane to quacks, and when he came 
across patients, who had been their dupes, his ex- 
pressions to the victims, and of the imposters. were 
more pointed than graceful. Great operations atuact 
those who are seeking after pelf and fame, for their 
own sakes, but the ardent lover ot suffering humanity 
is as delighted at the extraction of an ulcerated tooth, 
as at the successful issue of a heroic surgical task. 
Syme impressed this upon his students and carried it 
out in his practice. He often took, for an example, 
that of ulceration of the legs, or that more commonly 
known as "fever sores." They were a perfect harvest 
or quacks, and with liniments, irritating and foul 
salves, the small pimple become a running sore, 
which extended and deepened until life became in- 
tolerable. He discarded all these appliances and 
trusting to the powers of nature, applied to these 
cold water and supported the surrounding parts with 
adhesive straps, and the result was a great improve- 
ment. It mattered not whether the ulcers were languid 
or active, nature put forth strenuous efforts to fill the 
breach, and often succeeded unless medical officious- 
ness frustrated its benevolent designs. The only 
deviation from this course was in regard to what might 
be called the poor man's ulcers. These afflicted 
those, "who had an impoverished system, from ritiated 
air in close alleys, and from poor and insufficient food. 
These ulcers were surrounded by a hard, stift and ex- 

SYME. 225 

ceedingly tender border,and were considerea incurable. 
This circle of morbid flesh completely cut off all 
healthy parts from effecting a cure. He applied a 
blister to the enemy and thus destroyed the virulence 
of its action, lliis was a great boon to poor men who 
were often permanently disabled from work on ac- 
count of them. When these extended downwards to 
the bone,and old surgeons recommended scraping the 
bone, or cutting out the bone, as a dtrnier ressou he 
often brought about a cure by internal remedies which 
improved the quality of the blood. He also opposed 
the closing up of a clean cut at its edffc, and leaving 
clots of blood in the wound, internally, to act as a 
foreign body and showed that unless there was com- 
plete adaption of the severed parts, it was better not 
to interfere, — until bleeding ceased, for the idea that 
effused clot was necessary to healing had been proved 
to be wrong in principle and practice. He opposed 
the amputation of a leg, because the foot or ankle 
might be only injured, and was the first to amputate 
it at the ankle. He was among the first to amputate, 
successfully, at the hip, and in several cases of other- 
wise inevitable death, saved the patients. But one of 
his greatest discoveries was in regard to the formation 
of bone. He showed conclusively by a series of ex- 
periments that bone was formed Iromits external cover- 
ing, and not from the centre,and thus opened the way 
for practice in regard to the union of the bone, es- 
pecially, in deformities of the bones of the face, by 
adapting to each other the parts of bone which sup- 
plied means of growth. It can at once be conceiyed 


how dozens of hitherto incurable cases of deformity 
and disease could by this knowledge be remedied and 
cured. Then, he condemned the usual practice in 
cases of the death of parts of the body, especially in 
old people, and I find in my memoranda book that 
his theory consisted in using mild treatment instead 
of the stimulating treatment of the Coopers, Hunters, 
Brodie and Liston, Tliey held that low vitality, and 
death took place by means of a vitiated state of the 
circulation in the parts, and thus destruction by cor- 
ruption. Syme held, and showed by examples, that 
this state was caused through an obliteration of the 
passages through blood-vessels, on accjunt of their 
turning into a bony substance, and finally closing up, 
as if tied with a string. This view was the means of 
changing the treatment, and, we need scarcely say, 
of saving many a life. He cured wry-neck by 
cutting the culprit muscle, and we remember how 
astonished the patients were at the smallness of the 
wound, the httle pain, and the wonderful change in 
their appearance. He was the first surgeon who ever 
executed this satisfactory work. He boldly tied both 
ends of an artery in dangerous places, when it was 
diseased by cin enlargement called aneurism. He 
brought to a great degree of perfection the cure Of 
hair-lip and split-palate. He had an ingenious way 
of restoring the nose, and in amputation of part of 
the foot, (leaving the heel-bones for future usefulness,) 
"where," as he used to say, "you put on the straps of 
your spurs." Thus I might go on, without stint, to 
relate hie contributions to operative surgery. I fail 

SYME. 227 / 

to recollect one other surgeon whose genius has 
done so much. Simpson justly immortalized himself 
in the practical use of chloroform. Syme has a cata- 
logue of inventions, and applications, and theories 
attached to his name and memory, either of which 
would be a great memorial of which any surgeon 
might be proud. I can scarcely realize the fact that 
three such men as Syme, Simpson, and Sir James 
Clark, have passed away within a few months of 
one another; but, they fought with death many a 
severe battle in the bodies of others, and now the fell- 
destroyer has his revenge. Syme was a severe op- 
ponent, and showed little mercy to his antagonists, 
but he scorned to take an undue advantage, yet he 
held his ground with great tenacity, and no foe ever 
found his theories wrong in practice. He scorned 
superficial investigation, and had no patience with 
pretenders. I remember how he fought, as late as 
1857, against the **blood letters." The battle had 
been going on, for over 30 years, and Syme's army 
of progressive medical thinkers was daily increasing, 
while the " fogies " were fast passing away. He 
told his students how he was ordered by his superiors 
to go to the Infirmary, regularly, every evening to 
bleed his patients. It mattered not if the diseases 
were as wide as the poles apart, the panacea was 
bleeding. One patient in one of the wards was bled 
one evening to the extent of five pounds, and next 
morning as the untortunate did not seem much 
better he was bled two pounds more. In low fevers 
as well as in severe injuries the same course of treat- 


ment was pursued, and he did not wonder at the great 
mortality. He said often, in substance, if you have 
a diseased fruit tree, in the garden, you do not cut a 
gash in it, and let the sap run out, to restore it to the 
healthy action. In bodily disease, a vein is opened in 
he arm, to reduce inflammation, and because in acute 
disease the pain is allayed,it is supposed to be subdued. 
The iusceptibility to realize pain is deadened by the re- 
duction of blood in the system, as a string tied round 
the arm benumbs it, because of impeded circulation. 
At the same time, nature has to make a draft upon 
the system to repair the mischief done. The master 
builders have no material to work with, and the 
encroachments of the enemy go on apace. The words 
are mine, but the argument contained is his, and the 
world at the present time endorses,the sagacious view. 
Who can calculate the good such a man does to human- 
ity? The circle of his influence ever widens, and 
deepens, and long after his name has been forgotten, 
his practical discoveries will still bless frail mortals, in 
the hands of a cloud of noble workers, who will 
doubtless rear a goodly superstructure, on the solid 
foundation laid, with sagacity and skill, by such as 
honest and indefatigable Syme. Let me say in con- 
clusion, that Syme, Liston, Miller, and Simpson for- 
gave one another long before the grave closed over 
their remains, and left behind them only a sweet re- 


THE Greeks and Romans, including their philoso- 
phers, were superstitious, and believed in omens, 
apparitions, and delusions in their multifarious forms. 
They had lucky and unlucky days, as some of us ac- 
count Friday to be one. To sneeze in a certain di- 
rection, at certain hours of the day, was a bad, or 
good sign, to the sneezer, according to certain inevit- 
able rules. The entrails of sacrificed victims gave 
prognostics. The spittle rubbed on certain parts 
cuied disease, or shielded from harm. The direction 
of the flight ot birds had in it, interpretations of weal 
or woe ro humanity. The rolling thunder, or the 
flashing lightning, in its peals, or lurid intensity of 
light, was prophecy, portentous of "coming events." 

The ravings and drivelling idiocy of maniacs were 
construed into omens. Doubtless, the Jewish Rabbins 
of the middle ages were guilty of propagating these 
absurdities, as well as many others found in their 
traditions. The Druids were equally ignorant, and 
imaginative, in regard to the phenomena of nature. 
They had a superstitious veneration for the misletoe 
{viscum album) a parasitical vine, which takes root, so 
to speak, in the bark of the oak tree, and the oak 
was sacred to them, as their distinctive name of Druid 


indicates. It was cut with a golden knife, and only 
by a priest clad in white. The leaves and berries 
grew in groups of threes, and this odd number was 
mystical, as was considered the three leaved sham- 
rock. A solemn and impressive rite was performed 
when it was cut from the tree. The priests gathered 
round it, when the moon was six days old. The cut 
part could not be touched by a human hand, but 
was dropped into a white handlcerchief, and was 
thought to be one of the plants of Eden, and a specific 
for certain diseases. 

Nor were the fierce Saxon invaders, of the British 
isles, lest given up to a belief in these absurdities. 
The falling of salt meant financial ruin. The cross- 
ing of the traveller's pathway by a particular bird, a 
squirrel, or a hare, when the sun was at its meridian, 
or the moon at its full, were signs of the triumphs 
of enemies. To put the foot accidentally into the 
wrong shoe, was indicative of some fatal blunder. To 
wash hands in water used by another, was to make 
him, or her, your mortal enemy. To break a mirror 
was the beginning of troubles to you and yours. 
The seeing of a pair of magpies over the left shoulder 
foretold a double trouble.' The ticking, at dead of 
night, of the scarabseus, or deaih-ivatch^ was a sure sign 
of death coming into the family. 

Later in the centuries, parents were wont to ask 

their half-waked children, on St. George's " day in 

the morning," whether they loved their books, or not. 

If so, they were made professionals ; if not, craftsmen. 

Beat a child with an alder stick, and you checked its 

GHOSTS. 23/ 

Why did somebody know that Charles I. would 
come to a bad end ? Because the crowu tottered on 
his head at his coronation, and at the same time his 
royal flag was rent in twain as it fluttered over the 
White I'ower of l^ondon. Every cavalier and round" 
head knew that Cromwell could not die happy, in 
spite of his successes, for a great whale cam*^ up to 
Greenwich outlet, on the day of liis installation, and 
snorted defiance in the face of the Rump Parlia- 
ment. Then, if number tliree was a lucky number, » 
number two was not. The rending of the cloth of 
gold, upon which James II, trod at his inauguration, 
was ominous of his unenviable fate. A crop of mis- 
fortunes followed William II., Henry II,, and 
Charles II. 

Sir Thomas Browne, a celebrated physician of the 
17th century, in a book of " Enquiries into Errors," 
attempts to refute, with great erudition and gravity, the 
popular errors, that crystal is congealed ice, placed 
by close chemical affinity, beyond the possibility of 
thawing out ; that an elephant has no joints ; that a 
diamond is dissolved by the blood of a goat ; that 
a corpse weighs heavier than the living man ; that 
a king-fisher hungup by the bill shows the direction of 
the soft zephyrs ; that old Sol always has a dancing 
mania, on Easter day ; that certain herbs laid under 
the pillow were potent against dreams and visions 
of the night ; that a nail, from an old coffin laid at our 
bedroom door, drove away apparitions, and that the 
rue herb was an abomination to witches, and gave 
them hysterics if they came near it. 


The 25th day of January (St. Paul's day) decided 
the weather for a year, hence the old rhyme : 

" If St. Pauls day be fine and clear, 
Tt does betide a happy year ; 
_ But if it chance to snow or r.iin, 

Then will be dear all kinds of Rrain. 
If clouds or mists do dark the sky, 
Great store of birds and beasts shall die ; 
And if the clouds do fly aloft, 
Then wars shall vex the kingdom oft." 

Swithin, a Danish Bishop, of Winchester, wished 
to be buried in the churchyard in a democratic way. 
The monks, however, buried him in the Chancel ; 
but on July 15th, when this was done (St. Swithin's 
day) the dead Saint taught them a lesson, for he poured 
down on them, and the neighborhood, forty days' rain. 
They hastened to conciliate the obstinate and irate 
monk, by removing his body to the grave-yard, and 
built over it a chapel, giving him his way dcjure^ but 
in fact they conquered in the end. One notable miracle 
is recorded of him : 

" A woman having broke her eggs, 
By stumbling at another's legs, 
For which she made a woeful cry. 
St. Swithin chanced for to come I)y, 
Who made them all as sound, or more, 
Than ever that they were before." 

We laugh at these absurdities now. 

" We think our fathe'-s wroni?, so wise we grow, 
^ Our wiser sons, no uoubt, will think us so." 

The sailor still whistles for wind to fill his sails — 
sees omens in a "horned moon" — keeps witches away 
by nailing to the rudder, or capstan, or foremast, 
a worn horse-shoe. 

c; HOSTS. 233 

Not long since, in a rural part of Britain, says the 
London Times^ it was thought necessary, to insure 
peace to the departed and "lay his ghost," to turn 
the bee-hives round as the corpse left the house. The 
person who did it, thought it was necessary to upset all 
the hives near by. A general stampede was the 
result, and the corpus was XtiX. pro tern, to attend to its 
own obsequies. Our fathers gave or applied certain 
remedies, thrccy seven or 7iine times. We have the 
principle in the old song : 

" There'sluck in odd numbers, says RoryO'More." 

A royal salute is composed of firing 3 x 7, or 21 guns, 
or shots. A company of thirteen was always counted 
unlucky, for one of them was sure to die within the 
year. The average of human life was not taken into 
account. The seventh son of a seventh son is counted 
a genius in this age, and like kings and queens, was 
supposed by laying on of hands, to cure scrofulous 
diseases. The hand of a dead malefactor was called 
preeminently " the hand of glory," for the person 
touched by it could prevent pursuit, by temporarily 
paralyzing the pursuer. The Pagan believes in the 
malign influences of the moon, and its control over 
lunatics, and the notion is not yet extinct. There 
is still " a wet moon," or **a dry moon." — " If the 
Indian can hang his powder horn " on a new moon, or 
''if it will slide off," those positions wall show »vhat the 
meteorological condition of the lunar month will be. 
Pigs must be killed, sheep shorn, and trees cut down, 
at the full moon. Tusser's husbandry says "we should 
not commit seed to the earth when the soil, but when 


the moon requires it. Our hair sliould be cut when 
the moon is either in Leo, that our locks may stare 
like the lion's shag, or in Aries, th;U they may curl 
like a ram's horn. Whatever he would ha>cgrovv, 
he sets about when she is in her increase, but for 
what he would have made less, he chooses her wane." 
Eminent surgeons of the i6th century held that 
spots on the finger-nails were fit premonitions of 
coming evil events. Burton, in his anatomy , lield 
that a black s])ot on the nail is ominous of coming 
evil. As a general rule, it is a sure sign oi past injury. 
From the earliest ages, until to-day, the wedding ring 
is worn upon the fourth finger of the right hand, 
because it is believed the artery comes to it, from the 
heart more directly than to any of the other digitals. 
If a candle has a blue llame a spirit is hovering 
round, and a knot of tallow near the flame presaged 
that death will soon be in the family. If crickets 
left the house a calamity was at hand, just " as rats 
leave a sinking ship." To move on Friday, or leave 
port on Friday, is bad luck, because it was the day of 
the week of the crucifixion, and many, at the present 
time will not move a cat on that day as if poor 
pussy held in her claws the destiny of humanity. The 
class of plants called " Cryptogamia," eg-, the 
fern, have hidden seeds under the leaves. For a 
long time it was supposed that any one who found the 
invisible seed, and ate it, had the. power of becoming 
themselves invisible. The deadly nightshade {Atropa 
Belladonna) was supposed to feed only on corruption 
and decay, and hence had great medical properties 

GH0ST8. 235 

and virtues. The mandrake {atro/xi manihat^'^ra) was 
held in great repute, us the wise said it grcv only 
under the gallows, and fed from the corrupt drippings 
of executed malefactors, and so sensitive was it, that 
when pulled up, it shrieked. It was said to be pesti- 
lential to gather it, and so bunches of it were tied 
to dogs' t:iiis,an{l the canines were suddenly frightened 
away, carrying it with them. Its root cut in a certain 
way resembles a human form. The Glastonbury thorn 
is said to blossom only ou Christmas day — to bud in 
the morning, flower at noon, and decay at the apj)roach 
of night. , 

Joseph, of Arimathea, was said to have been the 
founder of Christianity in England, and on first 
landing stuck his staff into the ground, and it budded, 
and grew, at that place, into a thorn. James I. and 
Queen Anno visited it, and took away cuttings of it 
for good luck. The fact seems to be, that in thai- 
vicinity grows black hellebore {Hdlcborus nigcr), or 
Christmas rose, which blossoms early in the year, 
hence the legend. A silver bullet fired from a gun, 
if aimed in a straight line towards a witch, or a wizard, 
was sure death ; lead had no terrors for the possess- 
ed, but silver was potent to do mischief to these un- 
fortunates. To eat the lungs of a greyhound was good 
for consumption, for good lungs begot good lungs. To 
hang up a red cloth in a room in which lay a jierson 
ill with scarlet fever, brought the eruption out im- 
mediately. The Trojan priests cured by prayers. The 
Romans and Orientals by charms. Cato proposed 
as a cure for a fractured limb that tlio following 


charm should be sung : ^^Jfuat^ luciat, isM, pista^fisia, 
domifiabo damntistra et luxatay The Druids gave 
medicines, but accompaniec) them by religious cere- 
monials. This was an iruprovement on incantations, 
a sort of Cromwellian common sense, that believed in 
trusting in God and keeping the powder dry. A 
monkish legend says, King John of England was 
poisoned, by a reptile, being in his drink. A friar 
cured him by taking a toad, and putting it in ale, 
then pricked it all over, until the venom ran out, 
then presented this ambrosial dose to the king, on 
bended knees, saying, ''"^ir, wassail, for never in your 
life drank ye of such a cup.'' "Begin, monk," said 
the king. He drank and died, but it must have been 
from fright, the story should have run, /or toada are not 
poisonous. Certain saints seemed to have the control 
of certain diseases. The good men must have made 
certain diseases specialities. St. Appolonia (whoever 
he might be) controlled toothache. What a roaring 
trade he could have enjoyed in our day, and among 
this generation of rotting fangs, could he have charmed 
away that '' hell o' a' diseases !" St. Anthony "stamp- 
ed out " inflamations. St. Osillia cured, by magical 
efforts, sore eyes. St. Wolfgung made the lame walk 
by his potent piety. St. Ruffin made the mad sane 
by word of mouth. He must have studied the power 
of David's lyre over demoniac Saul. These, and 
other saints, possessing medical powers, were believed 
in, to the death. Bacon tells us, a wounded snake 
will drag itself to a medicinal plant and attempt a 
•cure by rubbing itself against it ; and that the flesh 

GHOSTS. 237 

of dragons, severely hunted, will if eaten prolong 
life. Scott, in his " Discovery of Witchcraft," says 
that in early times if a perbon was bitten by a 
scorpion, this was a sure cure, "say to an ass secretly, 
(we would say in soliloquy), and as it were, whisper- 
ing in his ear, *I am bitten with a serpent.'" '■^Eureka,'* 
the remedy is potent. Find an elder tree on which 
the sun has never sent its rays, and apply its leaves 
to St. Anthony's fire, and no fire company could 
quench a flame sooner. To cure consumption tie a 
rag to the finger, and toe-nail of a sick person, then 
take it off, and wave it three times round your head, 
and bury it privately, and that fell destroyer is master- 
ed. Ricketty children were drawn through the rent 
in a green tree ; the tree was then bound up, and 
when it healed, the child got better. Mount a patient, 
who had whooping-cough, on a black ass (all depended 
on the color), then trot the animal nine times round 
the oak tree, and repeat this valuable journey every 
day at noon, until a cure is eff"ected; or, if that did not 
do, make a dog swallow a hair, from the sick person's 
head, rolled in butter. It is believed yet by many, that 
a ring made out of Communion money is a cure om- 
nipotent, for convulsions. Lord Bacon, in his "Sylva 
Sylvarum," gives great prominence to gold as a 
remedial agent, and par excell^ice, it was called au- 
rum potabilc. Charles II. swallowed all sorts of abomi- 
nations on his death-bed, and had prescribed to him, 
at last, "the treacle of mummy," viz.^ ground Egyp- 
tian munimy, and molasses. We are not informed 
whether it was important as to the sex of the mummy; 


but the svilphur and treacle to which the juveniles 
of Dotheboy's Hall, were doomed would have been 
nectar, in comparison to that villainous compound. 

It may be said that all these superstitions were of 
the past, and that the Common Schools have (driven 
them away, into oblivion. Not at all. The astrologer 
who pretends to read our future destiny flourishes 
A. D,, 1873, in large cities and is sought for, far and 
near. The " bumpologist" whose fingers seek ele- 
vations-, numerous, prominent, and rotund, on the 
skull, and who can by these manipulations "read 
you like a book," ''drives a roaring trade." 

The Spiritualists seeks information from the Spirit 
land, of a loved or hated one, wishing the former 
ambrosial fruit, and the latter a hot gridiron, and 
sends a lock of the hair, a paring of a toe-nail, or an 
excised cuticle, to a medium, in order to make that 
iertium quid, en rapporf with a vagabond Spirit, and 
it two or more call for the disembodied essence at 
once, the rule is ''first come fiist served." He, she, 
or it, comes at once from the utmost bounds of 
the universe to the elect, and lucky go-between, and 
launches out into biography, history, poetry or cook- 
ing, the first complete, of many non-corporeal egos 
and the last personal, and far from satisfactory, and the 
middle two consisting of a fnisei-ae. This burlesque, on 
a grand truth, is the religion of tens of thousands. In 
the Province of Ontario, at this hour, woollen threads 
are tied round thumbs and toes, to stop divers bleed- 
ings. The skin of a black cat with a white tip to its 
tail, in its application, cures inflammation. Spiders 

GHOSTS. ' 239 

webs rolled into pills cure agues. Table salt put 
into a plate, and over the mouth of the dead, pre- 
vents putrefaction. All our dead are buried with 
their feet to the east, because the centre of attraction 
at the resurrection, it is supposed, will be in that 

The dismal howl of a dog forebodes death close 
at hand, in the direction the cur barks. The large 
end of a pig's '•melt" in proportion to a small end, 
tells whether the first end of the winter will be severe, 
or the last, or both ends, for "coming events, thus, cast 
their shadows before." 

All these absurdities, and a thousand others, are 
of to-day, in Awjlo-Saxendom, so enlightened, so sharp- 
witted, and so wise. There is a mote, or a beam some- 
where else, than in a brother's eye. Intelligent 
people believe such nonsense, and while they laugh 
at the fancies, will perform some of those acts, say- 
ing, "they will do no harm, and may be true." 
Need we wonder, then, that a belief in ghosts took 
possession of a people whose mentality had been 
educated to accept, as true as Holy writ, these signs, 
omens, charms, and superstitions. 

Ghosts ! What crowds of unpleasant memories troop 
forward from the cloudy past, at the mere utterance 
of the word ! How the juvenile days of such in- 
quisitorial torture come up in horrid retrospects, 
and reminiscences of the past ! The old and dripping 
cave by the sea shore is conjured up, as with wizard 
wand ; and the stalactites, and stalagmites of gro- 
tesque form, stand out in bold relief, as if sheeted 


dead, and every cold, damp nook seemed a fit home 
for witches or hobgoblins. We see the weird sisters 
dancing round the livid flames, as tempest, and 
thunder, and lightning hold high revelry without. 
*'The secret, dark, and midnight hags," who ride 
mid-air on broom-sticks, on the wings ot the hurri- 
cane, or sail over dark pools, of Stygian mirkiness, in 
creels, seem to be there, invisible, deep in the mys- 
tery of foulest deeds. The caverns of old ocean 
left gaping wide, by the receding billows, were, in 
youthful and exuberant fancy, the palaces of mermaids 
— half fish — half woman — with flowing hair, blue eyes 
of sad and ocean-like prcfuuility, and well-developed 
busts, singing a syren song to, lure helpless and 
hapless mariners to destruction. Yonder, was the 
phantom ship, crowded with ghostly sailors, and 

" Her sails that glance in the sun, 

Like restless gossamers, 

Her ribs, through which the sun 

Did peer as through a grate 

The sun's rim dips, th^ stars rush out, 
At one stride comes the dark, 
With far-heard whisper o'er the sea, 
Off shot the spectre bark,'' 

but, after such a sight, to the terror-stricken tars, can 
be no harbour, no home, no kindred on earth. Yon- 
der is the dreary vale where " Mungo's mither hanged 
hersel," or where foul and secret murder was com- 
mitted unatoned for. and because of which, the 
troubled spirit, in unrest, walks its weary rounds, 
uttering doleful lamentations, as if afflicted with a 
grievous tooth-ache, or cramped stomach, until it 
unburdens its woe to some startled midnight traveller, 


who interrogates it, on its eccentricities,, and then it 
"finds rest for the weary," for we have the authority 
of Mihon in his "Ode on the Nativity," in positively 
asserting that : — 

"When the sun in bed, 
Curtained with cloudy red, 
Pi'lows his chin upon the orient wave, 
The flociiing shadows pale 
Troop to the iniernal jail, 
Each lettered ghost slips to his several grave ; 
And the yellow skirted rays 
Fly after the night steeds, leiuing their moon-loved maze."' 

The graveyard seems to be a grand rendezvous 
for ghosts. They seem to have a hankering after the 
casket of mortality, even if it is a festering, loath- 
some corpse, fashionably wrapped in muslin, cotton, 
fine linen, ribbons, broadcloth, timber, shavings, 
varnish, and tinsel, for the furniture of its dwelling 
place, or a few pounds of unctuous, clammy earth, 
in which lies a porous skeleton, with grinning jaws, 
and hollow sockets, and empty ribs, yet all ♦' midst 
skulls and coffins, epitaphs and worms." The young 
are there, plucked in their bloom j those who were 

" Young loves, young hopes, 
Dancing on morning's cheek ; 
Gems leaping in the coronet of love ; 
Gay, guileless, sportive little things, 
Dancing around the den of sorrows ; 
Clad in smiles." 

The maiden fair, on whom nature has laid a master 
hand, is also a tenant. The stalwart athlete, the 
brave heart, the wise head, filled with a motley 
multitude of passions ''magnanimous and mean," 
lie quietly in the narrow house •• appointed lor all 



living.'' The grey head, the beuded form, the 
aching frame, and the weary brain seek repose 
amid the clods of the valley, 

" Strange medley here ! 
Here garrulous old age, winds up its tale, 
And jovial youth, ot lightsome vacant heart, 
Whose every day was made of melody. 
Hears not the voice of mirth ; the shrill-tongued shrew 
Meek as the turtle-dove, forgets hercliiding, 
. Here are the wise, the generous and the brave, 
The just, the good, the worthless and profane, 
The downright clown, and perf^ectly well-bred ; 
The fool, the churl, the scoimdrel, and the mean, 
The supple statesman, and the patriot stern. 
The wreck of nations, and the spoils of time, 
With all the lumber of six thousand years." ( 

No wonder that the "cities of the dead," " Clod's 
acres," should be thought haunted ground. Here 
" dead candles, tlit over graves, with lurid flame, 
noiselessly undoing gates, ringing church bells, and as 
forerunners, floating in tlie way of future funeral 
processions. Here the " sheeted dead" take walks 
for exercise, and always at the midnight hour. To 
their credit be it spoken, they eschew the fashions, 
and sport no waterfalls — no hoops or crinoline — 
no Dolly Vardens — no dromedary humps — no chig- 
nons — no spaviny limbs -no stove-pipe hats — no 
pants of restricted area — no swallow-tailed coats — 
and no exalted heels, on the " cribbing and cabin- 
ed'' boots. White is the standard colour, and the 
garments flow in graceful outline, and artistic folds 
to the ground. They are not gregarious in their 
habits, and seem to enter into no companionship with 
a brother or sister ghost ; but are ever found as 
lonely sentinels, as if ostracised from the spectral 

GHOSTS. 243 

camp, or as being on the vidette line of the mighty 
army of unsubstantial entities. They seek companion- 
ship with humanity ; but the poor things are too 
often rebuffed, with a «' not at home " falsehood, or 
with a clean pair of heels, in active exercise, seeking 
refuge by ignominious flight. These phantoms 
are accused of deriving pleasure by striking terror into 
the hearts of the beholder, and that such disreputable 
motives make them missionaries to earth. This 
charge may be a bearing of false witness against our 
neighbours, and may lay us open, at some future 
time, to a prosecution for defamation of character, 
where nolle prosi' qui cannot be entered. The liorrible 
idea is not conducive to the peace of mind especially 
of rebellious youths, or belated truants from home, 

" Oft in the lone churchyard at night I've seen 
By glimpses of moonsliine, chequered throiigh the trees. 
I he school-boy, with his satchel in his hand, 
WhiBthng aloud to keep his courage up. 
And lightly tripping o'er the long flat stones, 
(Wiih nettles skirted and white moss o'ergrown,) 
That tell in homely phrase who lies below, 
Sudden he starts ! and hears, or thinks he hears, 
The sound of something purring at his heels, 
Full fast he flies, and dares not look behind him, 
Till out ot breath he overtakes his fellows ; 
Who gather round and wonder at the tale 
Of horrid apparition, tall and gh«stly. 
That walks at dead of night, or takes his stand 
O'er some new opened grave ; and, strange to tell 
Jb. vanishes at crowing of the cock." 

His Satanic Majesty seems to have a love for 
graveyards and churches. Whether it is because he 
has chattel mortgages on certain property in the one, 
and finds his strongest opposition in the other, it is 


hard to tell. It may be that he permeates the atmos- 
phere of the sacred edifice, with a demoniac influ- 
ence, which makes sermons dull, speakers stupid, 
and hearers sleepy, or tfiat he is on the hunt for some 
*' wandering refugee" ghost, which does not return 
to its virtuous couch at seasonable hours. That he 
finds these places, citadels of opposition, and com- 
petition is evident, and, therefore, having regard to 
the integrity of his kingdom, in this mundane sphere^ 
it is not to be wondered at, that his anxiety should 
be great in regard to these places, when every seventh 
day, organized attempts, at the overthrow of his 
sovereignty, are systeniatically carried on with vigor, 
and with partial success. We have all felt his potent 
clairvoyance, at such times, by a sense of the ludi- 
crous predominating, where no fun or humour should 
be — by a ledger or day book, or bank note rising 
up before the mind's eye, as from devilish incantations 
— by John having photographs of Maggie standing 
out in clear relief, on the back of a front pew, on a 
panel of the pulpit, or on the white wall — by Maggie 
pondering on the last words uttered at the garden 
gate, where only two were good company — by far- 
mer Jacobus wondering when the drought will end ; 
when the " epizoo" will cease tormenting his horses ; 
and why such myriad pests affect direfuUy his crops 
— by Jerusha wondermg how Sally Jones could afford 
to wear such nice things — by Ebenezer Perkins 
studying out how much he will give in a horse trade, 
to morrow, and how he can cheat a neighbour out 
of his honest dues next court — by Dolorous Punjaub, 

GHOSTS. 24< 

who has cast-iron features, studying a pose which 
will affect stunningly a congregation, by the solemn 
attitude. The Spirit will watch the spiders and count 
the cobwebs ; it will draw lakes, rivers, continents 
and islands, from the black spots on the wall ; it 
sees a butter-fly, roving, how sober it is, by walking 
up and down, on the bridge of some body's nose, 
without a stagger, and at imaginary moisture ; 
it does chuckle at a philosophic grasshopper's clumsy 
attempts to produce friction on its spine by means of 
legs, which seem too long for successful applica- 
tion ; and on the top of .the pew, the observed of 
all observers ; it will, by a sort of inference, draw 
conclusions as to the probable length of the sermon, 
the state of the road home, the time of arrival, and 
the probabilities as to the dinner hour. The dody 
is no better, for it must intermittently seek temporary 
comfort, on one hemisphere at a time ; the head will 
insist on exciting disagreeable sensations, positive 
and local, which, in the interest of peace, must have 
vigorous manual treatment, in spite of the critical ob- 
servations of church going comrades, in the rear 
ranks ; the probocis is profuse in its libations to an 
unknown frigid deity, and the cotton, linen, or silk 
receptacle, for its generous offerings, has been left 
at home ; the grinding, stinging, throbbing corn, 
imprisoned in a number six, is rebellious at its cap. 
tivity, and is, in feeling tones, crying out for a /labeas 
corpus. We set the toes up, but no relief. We raise 
the heels, but there is no peace, " in the north-west 
angle of said lot, number eight ;" we turtle-like with- 


draw the rebellious domain, by muscular contrartion, 
from the undue pressure of the enemy, and find a 
truce of temporary duration, from the fangs of the 
relentless foe. " A kingdom for an old shoe I" A 
" dickie " is pinned carefully to hide, hypocritically, 
a manly bosom, and all which lies between, but pins 
come out, starch is obstinate, and a smootii surface 
becomes corrugated into hills and valleys, with peeps 
behind the scenes. We send i*" /// situ, with a savage 
push, but it will not stay put, and grins, nods, winks 
show that ''the murder is out." I occupied a pew 
once with a friend in a cer.tain church, who had a 
bunch of matches in a linen coat pocket. He sat 
on them, and by the friction of contract, they took 
lire, and with them the coat. The fumes showed 
the seat of trouble, and forgetting time and place, 
he ejaculated " the d — 1 !" just as " Brethren, the 
scriptures moveth us in sundry places, isic," floated 
on the air, and then he described the hypothenuse of a 
right-angled triangle, towards the door, leaving 
sulphurous fumes in the rear, with an incense suggestive 
of another locality. This catalogue of Satanic 
influence is far trom complete, and in the midst of it 
all, we are expected to " inwardly digest" all which 
father Comfort has said. 

Vampyres were graveyard frequenters of a sanguin. 
ary kind. They must have been a sort of ghostly 
weasels, and loved to suck human blood. The learned 
Horst says " A vampyre is a dead body, which con 
tinues to live in the grave ; which it leaves, however^ 
by night, for the purpose of sucking the blood of 

GHOSTS. 147 

the living, and thus it keeps in good condition, <•.//.' 
You lie, powerless at night, in bed, and this pale 
spectre of the grave approaches you. His face is 
felt by you, fresh with the corrupt odours of the 
^harncl-house. He seizes you by the jugular vein 
and pierces it with his poisonous fangs, then, takes 
his supper from t'.e fiowuig crimson stream — simple 
but nutritious food — and leaves no wound behind. 

We are told the wound is fatal, unless the victim 
eats earth from the grave of the vampyre, and smears 
hmiself with his blood. At last, the bitten becomes 
himself a vampyre, in time, and thus the monstrosity 
is perpetuated. This belief is no tale of fiction, for it 
has been believed in by good Pkitains, and to this 
day the delusion is potent in Servia and Wallachia, 
and in the Levant, being sworn to by wise surgeons, 
and learned savans. To utter the word " Var- 
donlacha" to a modern Greek (if Byron or Southey 
is to be believed,) is to shock him wiHi horror. 
Byron's poetic power is seen in the Tartar's curse 
against a father : 

" But first on earth as Vampyre sent, 
Thy corse shall from its tomb be rent ; 
Then ghastly haunt thy native place, 
And suck the blood of all thy race, 
There from thy daughter, sister, wife, 
At midnight drain the stream of life, 
Yet loathe the banquet, which perforce 
Must feed thy living, livid corse. 
Wet with tl ine own best blood shall dip 
Thy gnashing tooth, and haggard lip. 
Then stalking to thy sullen grave, 
Go, and with ghouls and Afrits rave ; 
Till these in horror shrink away 
From spectre more accursed than they t 


, Dickens, in •' All the Year Round," says that : In 
the year 1625, on the borders of Hungary and Tran- 
sylvania, a vampyrish story arose, which "was renewed 
afterward in a noteworthy way. A peasant of 
Madveiga, named Arnold Paul, was crushed to death by 
the fall of a wagon-load of hay. Thirty days afterwards 
our persons died with all the symptoms (according 
to popular belief) of their blood having been sucked 
by vampyres. Some of the neighbors remembered 
having heard Arnold say that he hau often been tor- 
mented by a vampyre ; and they jumped to the con- 
clusion that the passive vampyre had now become 
active. This was in accordance with a kind of formula 
or theorem on the subject: that a man who, when 
alive, has had his blood sucked by a vampyre, will, 
after his denth, deal with other persons in like man- 
ner. The neighbours exhumed Arnojd Paul, drove a 
stake through the heart, cut ofif the head, and burned 
the body. The bodies of the four persons who had 
recently died, were treated in a similar way, to make 
surety doubly sure. Nevertheless, even this did not 
suffice. In 1 73 1, seven years after these events, 
seventeen persons died in the village near about one 
time. The memory of the unlucky Arnold recurred 
to the vir igers ; th3 vampyre theory was again ap- 
pealed tc ; be was believed to have dealt with the 
seventeen as he had previously dealt with the four; 
and they were therefore disinterred, the heads cut of!, 
the hearts staked, the bodies burned, and the ashes 
dispersed. One supposition was that Arnold had 
vampyrised some cattle, that the seventeen villagers 

GHOSTS. 249 

had eaten of the beef, and had fiillen victims in con- 
sequence. This affair attracted much attention at 
the time. Louis the XV. directed the Aml)assa- 
dor at Vienna to make inquiries in the matter. Many 
of the witnesses attested on oath that the disinterred 
bodies were full of blood, and exhibited few of the 
usual symptoms of death — indications which the be- 
lievers in vampyres stoutly maintained to be always 
present in such cases. This has induced many phy- 
sicians to think that real cases of catalepsy or trance 
were mixed up with the popular beli^.f, and were 
supplemented by a large allowance of epidemic fana- 
ticism. Mr. Pashley, in his "Travels in Crete," stales 
that when he was at the town of Askylo, he asked 
about the vampyres, or katakhanadhes, as the Cretans 
called them, of whose existence and doings he had 
heard many recitals, stoutly corroborated by the 
peasantry. Many of the stories converged towards 
one central fact, which Mr. Pashley believed had 
given origin to them all. On one occasion a man of 
some note was buried afc St. George's Church, at Kali- 
krati, in the island of Crete. An arch or canopy was 
built over his grave. But he soon afterwards made 
his appearance as a vampyre, haunting the village, 
and destroying men and children. A shepherd was 
one day tending his sheep and goats near the church, 
and on being caught in a shower, went under the 
arch to seek shelter from the rain. He determined 
to pass the night there, laid aside his arms, and 
stretched himself on a stone to sleep. In placing his 
firearms down (gentle shepherds of pastoral poemi 


do not want firearms, but the Cretans are not gentle 
shepherds), he happened to cross them. Now this 
crossing was always believed to have the eftect of pre- 
venting a vampyre from emerging ^rom the spot where 
the emblem was found. Thereupon occurred a singu- 
lar debate. The vampyre rose in the night, and re- 
quested the shepherd to remove the firearms in order 
that he might pass, as he had some important business 
to transact. The shepherd, inferring frpni this re- 
quest that the corpse was the identical vampyre which 
had been doing so much mischief, at first refused his 
assent ; but on obtaining from the vampyre a promise 
on oath that he would not hurt him, the shepherd 
moved the crossed arms. The vampyre, thus enabled 
to rise, went to a distance of two miles, and killed 
two persons, a man and a woman. On 1ms return, 
the shepherdsaw some indication of v/hat had occurred, 
which caused the vampyre to threaten him with a 
similar fate if he divulged what he had seen. He 
courageously told all, however. The priests and 
other persons came to the spot next morning, took 
up the corpse (which in day-time was as lifeless as any 
other), and burnt it. While burning, a little spot of 
blood spurted on tlie sheplierd's foot, which instantly 
withered away; but otherwise no evil resulted, and the 
vampyre was effectually destroyed. This was certain- 
ly a very peculiar vampyre story ; for the coolness 
with which the corpse, and the shepherd carried on 
their conversation under the arch was unique enough. 
Nevertheless, the persons who narrated the affair to 
Ml". Pashley firmly believed in its truth, although 
slightly differing in their versions of it. 

GHOSTS. 251 

This superstition doubtless arose from the fact 
that many persons were buried alive. In many epi- 
demics thousands are hurried to the grave, who are 
only in a death-trance. The suspension of the heart's 
action — of respiration — of voluntary motion — of nor- 
mal bodily warmth — of all the phenomena of animal 
life maybe absent, and, yet, the person may be alive, 
and in many cases conscious of the coming doom of 
permature interment. This suspended animation may 
be brought about by nervousness, disease, poisoning, 
suffocation, cold, or any exciting cause. - The German 
name of this condition is better than our English word 
"trance." They call it ** Scheintod," or apparent 
death. Negative signs of absence of life are no criteria 
of real death. Surgeons, "yho have studied this state 
have seen the glassy eye — muscular relaxation — no 
pulse, no blood from an opened vein, and perceived ;i 
smell of mortification from the body and still lite exist- 
ing. At these times, nothing short of the usual signs 
of mortification and decomposition could be relied on. 
Bulwer, who died a few weeVs ago, and who wrote " A 
Strange Story," treating of such subjects, made a pro- 
vision in his will, that he should not, under any cir- 
cumstances, be buried hastily, and that every precau- 
tion should be taken that he mii2;ht not be interred alive. 
Bodies thus buried, if disinterred, would preserve their 
freshness, in the cold grave, not evidenced in those in 
whom corruption had commenced, before being buried. 
Hence, no stretch of imagination is needed to con- 
ceive how ignorance could conjure up all sorts of absur- 
dities, in regard to vampyrism and its accompanying 


atrocities. Like the optical delusions of the Hartz 
Mountains, a small man can produce, by the refracting 

or reflecting laws of light, a giant of the Brocken,much 
more formidable than the original,and yet any airy de- 
lusion of th , clouds or mist. 

Some Irish families are blessed with thecons^^ant 
attendance of a Banshee. This ghost is aristocratic, 
and only attaches itself to families of patrician blood. 
It appears, generally, like a small, wiry, wrinkled, 
withered up old woman, with red hood, and red 
cloak. Before death takes place in the family, of its 
attachment, it fills the neighbourhood with wild 
screeches of unearthly intensity, and with heart-rend- 
ing lamentations most dolorous and pathetic. I do 
not know its genealogy,but would infer trom its unrest, 
that it is far from being happy, at intermittent seasons, 
and that death is an unpleasant visitant to its 
favorite haunts, and to its friends. 

In years gone by these families, which had the 
repute, of having an attendant Banshee, were proud 
of the spectral visitant, not because of its wailings 
and prophecies, but, because of its presence being 
prima facie evidence of aristocratic descent, in spite 
of " Burke's Peerage," or the local ostracism of "blue- 
blooded" nabobs, who ''came in with the Normans," 
forgetting, as many such do, that : 

' ' 'Tls only noble to be good ; 
Kind he-irts are more than coronets, 
And simple faith than Norman blood." 

The Banshee race is, however, becoming extinct, 
and I am willing to leav-e it to Darwin to decide, what 
link in the chain of being, it supplies, above or be- 

GHOSTS. 253 

low humanity, and whether its fossil remains are to 
be found "in the sands of time," or is it "a trifle light 
as air." Chambers in his '* Popular Rhymes of 
Scotland " gives an account of another race of 
bemgs, having attachment also to families, and if 
they will not be offended, I might say, that I feel 
sure the Banshee is aunt to them, and this fact gives 
them a respectable ancestry. The brownie was a 
household spirit of a useful and familiar character. 

In former times, almost every farm-house in the 
South of Scotland was supposed to be haunted by 
one. He was understood to be a spirit of a some- 
what grotesque figure, dwarfish in stature, but en- 
dowed with great personal strength. It was his humor 
to be unseen and idle during the day, or while the 
people of the house were astir, and only to exert 
himself while all the rest were asleep, It was cus- 
tomary for the mistress of the house to leave out 
work for him — such as the supper dishes to be washed, 
or the churn to be prepared — and he never failed to 
have the whole done in the morning. This drudg- 
ery he performed gratuitously. He was a most 
disinterested spirit. To have offered him wages, or 
even to present him with an occasional boon, would 
have insured his anger, and perhaps caused him to 
abandon the establishment. 

Numerous stories are told of his resentment in 
cases of his being thus affronted. For instance, the 
goodman of a farm-house, in the parish of Glen- 
devon, left out some clothes one night for the brownie, 

254 ^'^'^ PHOTOGRAPHS. 

who was heard during the night to depart, saying 
in a highly offended tone — 

" Gie brownic! coat, gie brownie sark, 
Ye'seget nae mair o' brownie's wark !" 

The Brownie of the farnj-house of Bods-beck, in 
Moffatdale, left his employment upwards of a cen- 
tury ago, on a similar account. He had exerted 
himself so much in the farm labor, both in and out 
of doors, that Bodsbeck became the most prosperous 
farm in the district. He always took his meat as it 
pleased himself, usually in very moderate quantities, 
and of the most humble description. During the 
time of very hard labor, perhaps harvest, when a little 
better fare than ordinary might have been judged ac- 
ceptable, the goodman took the liberty of leaving out 
a mess of bread and milk, thinking it but fair that 
at a time when some improvement, both in quantity 
and quality, was made upon the fare of the human 
servants, the useful brownie should obtain a share in 
the blessing. He, however, found his error, for the 
result war diat the brownie left the house for ever, 
exclaiming — 

' ' Ca', brownie, ca' 
A' the luck o' Bodsbeck away to Leithenha." 

The luck of Bodsbeck accordingly departed with 
its brownie, and settled in the neighboring fnrm- 
•house, called Leithenhall, whither the brownie trans- 
ferred his f iendship and services. One of the 
principal characteristics of the brownie was his 
anxiety about the moral conduct of the household 

GHOSTS. 155 

to which he was attached. He was a spirit very much 
inclined to prick up his ears at the first appearance of 
any impropriety in the manners of his fellow-servants. 
The least delinquency committed either in barn, or 
cow-house, or larder, he was sure to report to his 
master, whose interests he seemed to consider para- 
mount to every other thing in this world, and from 
whom no bribe could induce him to conceal the 
offences which fell under his notice. The men, there- 
tore, and not less the maids, of the establishment re- 
garded him with a mixture of fear, hatred and respect • 
and though he might not often find occasion to do 
his duty as a spy, yet the firm belief that he would 
be relentless iu doing so, provided that he did find 
occasion, had a salutary effect. A ludicrous instance 
of his zeal as guardian of the household morals is 
told in Peebleshire. Two dairymaids, who were 
stinted in their food by a too frugal mistress, found 
themselves one day compelled by hunger to have re- 
course to the highly improper expedient of stealing 
a bowl of milk and a bannock, which the}'' proceeded 
to devour, as they thought, in secret. They sat 
upon a form, with a space between, whereon they 
placed the bowl and the bread, and they took bite 
and sip alternately, each putting down the bowl 
upon the seat for a moment's space after taking a 
draughty and the other then taking it up in her hands, 
and treating herself in the same way. They had no 
sooner commenced their mess, than the brownie came 
between the two, invisible, and whenever the bow 
was set down upon the seat, also took a draught, by 


which means, as ht devoured fully as much as both 
put together, the milk was speedily exhausted. The 
surprise of the famished girls at finding the bowl so 
soon empty was extreme, and they began to ques- 
tion each other very sharply upon the subject, with 
mutual suspicion of unfair play, when the brownie un- 
deceived them, exclaiming, with malicious glee — 

"Ha! ha ! ha ! 
Brownie has't a'." 

The witches, poor creatures, had hard times of it. 

They were accused of selling themselves for some con- 
sideration, to the Evil One, aud in consequence of this 

quidpro quo, were supposed to be his abject slaves in 

this world, and that which is to come. With a more 

sudden and hideous metamorphosis than Ovid ever 
fancied, they changed themselves, at will, into all 

sorts of animals. In crossing rivers,they sailed m 
creels, and dare not, when crossing the ferry, utter 
the name of Deity,nor any of his attributes, lest the 
crazy vessel would at once sink, and they perish. 
They rode in the air, uncomfortably, on brooms ticks, 
making good time, and expjpring the earth, for congen. 
ial work to do. They were burned at the stake, and died 
martyrs to the sceptical faith, yet, these poor crea- 
tures, real objects of pity, were the subjects of mon 
omania, hallucination, trance-waking, or self-delusion, 
and belied themselves as being possessed of the 
devil. Shakespeare takes advantage of this proof of 
superstition, 10 give us the horrible picture of the 
wierd sisters, holding hi^h revelry, round a lurid fire, 
and in dance and song, and culinary art, making wit 

GHOSTS. 257 

ches' broth. The food is not of such a paLitable nature 
as would tempt an epicure,or cure a dyspepiic, 

" Round about the chaldron go : 
In the poisoned entrails throw — 
Food that under coldest stone, 
Days and nights hast thirty-one ; 
Sweltered venom, sleeping got, 
Boil thou first in the charming pot, 
Fillet of a fenny snake, 
In a chaldron boil and bake, 
Fye of newt, and loe of frog, 
\Vool of hat, and tongue of dog, 
Adder's fork, and l)lind worm's sting, 
Lizard's leg, and owlet's wing. 
For a charm of powerful trouble, 
Like a hell broth, boil and bubble, 
Scale of dragon, tooth of wolf, 
"V/itches' mummy, maw and gulf, 
Of the ravined salt-sea shark, 
Root of hemlock, digged in the dark, 
l^iver of blaspheming Jew ; 
Gall of goat, and slips of yew, 
Shiveredin the moon's eclipse ; 
Nose of Turk, and Tartar's lips, 
Cool it with a baboon's blood- 
Then the charm is firm and good, 

Black spirits and white. 

Red spirits and grey : 

Mingle, mingle, mingle, 

You that mingle may." 

I confess the broth might be excellent, but it would 
need a ravenous appetite, and a blunted imagination to 
make it palatable. These witches foretold events. 
They brought, or drove away, at pleasure, the murrain 
or rot, among catMe. They sowed discord on do mes- 
tic hearths. They influenced minds for evil, and set 
nations, communities, and families, into fiercest, 
conflicts, feuds, and quarrels. Thunders and light- 
nings obeyed them, for all the ix)tency reposing in 
the right arm of ''the Prince of the power of the air," 
was at the command cf these seful auxiliaries. In 



Burns' '''Tarn o' Shunter," we learn that they enjoy 
themselves, by dancing, with ghastly surroundings, in 
dubious company — and with a sable fiddler, whose 
reputation has never been of the best, and to whom no 
respectable person could give a certificate of charac- 
ter. He is the chieftain of a motley throng, and 
witches seem to be the feminine gender of bis vast 
heritage, being possessed of blatant tongues, great 
cunning, busy-bodies, mischief-makers, and irrepress- 
ibles. The most of them have been hanged, or burned, 
or drowned, so that the race has become extinct, and, 
more subtle agencies have been found in this specula- 
tive age, to do their work. Let a sigh of sorrow be 
given to the memory of poor wretches, who perished, 
the victims of ignorance, superstition, and fanaticism. 
The fairies were diminutive, but active creatures* 
dressed neatly, bat fantastically,and were not so mali- 
cious as fond of practical jokes. They delighted in 
grassy hillocks, and babbling brooks, and sometimes 
indulged in petty larceny. Young babes were their 
delight, and it is said by one, who ought to know, that 
their ranks were recruited from those of infants. If a 
door was left open at night, and a beautiful intant 
should happen to be in the house, the fairies gave 
to the sleeping mother beautiful dreams of " a happy 
land," and v^hile the visions of the night held tlie 
sleeper spell-bound, stole the nursling away. I do 
not know what their code of ethics may be, but this* 
looks like abduction, of a disreputable kind, but seeing 
that they have no children of their own, and that 
"self-preservation is the first law of nature," perhaps 

GHOSTS. 259 

"the end sanctifies the means." The fairies believe 
in a monarchy, if Shelley is to be credited. In his 
^'Queen Mab," he says, they dwelt in a gorgeous world 
of clouds, beyond the confines of the material uni- 
verse of worlds. When they leaned over the battle, 
ments of their aerial palace and castle, to fairy eyes 

" Earth's distant orb appeared 
The smallest light that twinkles 

In the heavens. 

While above, below, around 
The circling systems formed 
A wilderness of harmony." 

Queen Mab, their sovereign, rode in a magic car 

of gorgeous colors, drawn by phantom coursers of 

the air, covered with azure pennons, and driven with 

reins of sunbeams. These pigmy creatures are said 

to be fond of music, and charm the human ear with 

heavenly melodies. They are excellent dancers, but 
•woe betide the poor wight who joins them in their 

reels. I saw the hillock, where Hector Mc Alister 
sat down to rest himself, with a sack of oatmeal on 
his back. A door opened in the green sward at his 
side, and he saw, in a beautifully furnished grotto, 
myriads of fairies dancing to music which " put met- 
tle in his heels." He joined the merry throng, 
and as time sped on, 

" The pipers loud andt louder blew, 
The dancers quick and quicker flew.'' 

until, after what appeared to him a short time of ex- 
quisite pleasure, he found himself on the bleak moor, 
.at midnight's darkest hour, but half a century had 


flown, in the mean time. Like the seven sleepy- 
headed youths of Ephesus, or jolly old Rip Van 
Winkle, he found his kindred had departed, his place 
was filled, and his memory like "the baseless fabric 
of a vision." History and tradition tell not, whether 
or not, like a sensible man, he made his meal into 
"guid kail brose," and then gave up the ghost. My 
grandfather oiten saw them, and heard their music, 
but warily fled from their allurements. I dared not 
doubt such testimony, and call all such sensorial illus- 
ions, for he would have "brained" the sceptic in his 
evil, and left me a warning, like Lot's wife. 

A soul disenthralled from its earthly tenement may 
travel as quickly as thought, and by subtle influence, 
stir up clouds of ideas from the nest of latent recol- 
lections, or be the occasion of generating new thought 
in kindred spirits. These mental photographs are real 
to the possessor, and are often erroneously supposed 
to be material objects when they are purely subjective, 
hence, the deep-rooted belief in ghosts, as " some- 
things " unearthly, superhuman, intangible, yet visi- 
ble individuals, outs'de of the startled observers. 
Satan, and all his emissaries have not the divine attri- 
bute of omnipresence, yet, their influence is ubiqui- 
tous. Their powers must extend far beyond the indi- 
vidual presence. A general law of spiritual life, 
doubtless, exists, through which the " afar "' beconies 
"near,^' and the "here'' is co-extensive v»ith thought. 
Time and distance are reduced to the infinitesimal, 
and the wings of Ariel are slow in comparison to 
the fleet and flashing intelligences, unburdened by 

GHOSTS. 261 

mortality. The wonderful powers of a human soul 
in the so-called abnormal states of clairvoyance, 
mesmerism, trance-waking, trance-sleeping, and som 
nambulance show, by analogy, the extreme probability 
of the existence of such laws in the spirit-land. At 
the same time it does not follow that a human hand, 
or an earthly body, must be the only medium through 
which our departed friends can communicate with 
us, if we except their wilful propensities to play 
pianos — to cause chains to dance reels, to give mys- 
terious knocks on table legs, to write hieroglyphics, and 
"other fantastic tricks as would make angels weep." 
That cunning strategy of the so-called spiritualist, in 
thus pretending to unfathom, in this grotesque way 
''this mystery of mysteries," reduces a grand and 
solemn truth to an absurdity. At the same time, 
we have those positive announcements of Holy Writ 
which say there are "ministering spirits sent forth 
to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation." 
"The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them 
that fear him." "He maketh his messengers spirits.'* 
" I am thy fellow servant, and of thy brethren the 

If such like texts do not mean visitations from 
the spirit land, then are such wonderful scenes as 
those at the dark hour of the crucifixion, and on the 
Mount of Transfiguration, myths, fables, and fictions, 
and we are not among those " ot whom the whole 
family in heaven and earth is named." But the in- 
tuitions of all kmdreds, and peoples, and nations,give 
no uncertain sound in regard to a close connection 


between the two worlds of spirits, or rather the' same 
world in two states of transition, but both " one and 
indivisible." Mythology, which gave individuality 
to all the passions, desires, and emotions of humanity, 
which had deities for every Sylvan grove, every bab- 
bling brook ; every valley and every mountain pro- 
claim this truth ; nor can keen irony, cutting sarcasm, 
intellectual acumen, or logical effort eradicate the idea 

from the human mind. It is woven in the warp and 
woof of our three fold natures. We instinctively long 
tor a gaze into these wondrous scenes, which lie 
before every son and daughter of Adam's race. 

" Tell us, ye iead ! will none of you, in pity 
' To those you left behind, disclose the secret? 

O I that some courteous ghost would blab it 

What 'tis you are, and we must shortly be. 

Well, 'tis no matter : 
A very little time will clear up all. 
And make us learned as you are, and as close." 

A remarkable case is that of Samuel and Saul men- 
tioned in the Old Testament. Here was a king in 
distress. The Philistines were in the vale of Shunem, 

numerous, well-equipped, and thoroughly organized. 
Samuel was dead, and Abiathar, the high priest, was 

with David. "The fool hath said in his heart, there 
is no God," but now he fears, for in frenzy, he had 
killed all the priests but one, and he had fled with 
the Ephod. Saul had been a terror to witches, but 
a reputed one still dwelt at Endor. At night, and in 
disguise, he goes to her. She is wary, and fears ex- 
posure ; he swears by the Hying God no evil shall 

r. HOSTS. 263 

befall her, if she will only give him a glimpse of the 
future. In response to her interrogat'on ot "IVhom 
do*you want?" the stricken king says "Samuel." The 
piophet appears and startles tiie hag herself. He 
came "without incantations, for she had not even called 
for him. It was Saul only, who had disquieted the 
risen prophet, to bring him up. She knew that a 
prophet could come only at the command of an 
anointed king, and at once rliargcd the king with 
deception. She gave a description of the risen dead, 
so indefinite, that it might be applied to any other 
individual — **an old man covered with a mantle," 
and up before him came gods, (lords). This whole 
scene was evidently an optical illusion, to the woman, 
for she alone saw it. God did not need to use the 
craft of "a mistress of Ob," (a false prophetess j to do 
his work, and as I have already shown the deception 
is often as startling in hearing words, as in seeing 
visions. " Ah ! says an objector, " but Samuel fore- 
told all the tragic disasters of next day, to a certainty." 
True, but it is not said that any one but an afTrighted 
Saul heard the prophecy, and it must be remembered 
that (i) Saul was in great terror, and had been the 
subject of "a troubling, or terrifying spirit," in other 
words, he had often been attacked wiih paroxysms of 
fury bordering on mania or extreme nervous sensibil- 
ity, in which the imagination was a Mazeppa, without 
a bridle, and the luckless victim bound helplessly to it. 
To such an one, ideal voices arc, as if they fell upon 
the ear. (2) He longed and hoped for comfort, by 
means of Samuel, although departed from this life. 


(3) The woman saw the appa-ition but the king per- 
ceived nothing but the voice. (4) Both were in a 
high degree of excitement and fear. (5) The whole 
scene took plac t at night. Y^as Saul illuminated ? (6) 
This morbid and nervous state has, in thousands of 
other cases, brought about a brainal view of a pano- 
rama ot dreaded, or wished for things. (7) The king 
knew his case was hopeless, hence his mind prog- 
nosticated defeat. He determined on suicide if d^/eat- 
ed, and thus foresaw the result. He knew his sons 
were brave, and in all probability would share his 
fate, either by their own hands, or those of the 
enemy. The spectre of tlie mind told all these things, 
in thunder tones, to the king, as did the sensitive 
organization of the woman " with a familiar spirit,' 
detect the ghost of Samuel. Natural law explains 
the whole scene, then why resort to miracle ? Saui 
sought not God in his distrer.s, and he was given 
over to delusion. The prophet spoke not God's 
words, for there was an error ii the prophecy. Samuel 
is reporied to have said, " To-morrow s\alt thou and 
thy Jons be with me." Now all Saul's sons did not 
perish, for Isbosheth survived "the fell havoc of the 
day," and reigned over Israel two years. I am not 
sure about the orthodoxy, by creed, of the above inter- 
pretation, but I am convinced it is a rational and 
consistent view of the sacred version. Many of the 
earthly fathers give us numerous instances of their 
physical conflicts with Satan and his imps, sometimes 
coming off victorious, and sometimes put hon de 
combat. The fathers of the later reformations from 

GHOSTS. 265 

VVicklifte and Luther, down to Wesley, tell of similar 
experiences. There is no dcubt of the honesty 
of the victims, in giving evidence, but our scepticism 
lies in believing such conflicts to have taken place, 
vf ith bo» a Jide and substantial ghosts. The brains of 
these active and earnest men were in a continual 
state of tension. The great foe of the human race 
was constantly in their thoughts, as an implacable 
enemy. They lived in an age of superstitious absur- 
dities,and were necessarily tinged with its beliefs ii the 
supernatural. It is not to be wondered at, that in 
hours of morbid sensibility and depression, a phan- 
tasmagoi-ia of "those things which run most in their 
heads" should take captive, at times, their better judg- 
ment. Such were mental facts, and confined to the 
boundaries of conceptive cognitions. They saw and 
heard the promptings of the Efjo. and trusting to the 
treacherous senses, believed themselves in actual 
bodily conflict with the " Prince of the power of the 
air," or his emissaries. Sir Walter Scott relates the 
following circumstance, which, doubtless, refers to 
Byron and himself. "Not long after the death of a 
certain illustrious poet, who had filled, when living^ 
a great station in the eye of the public, a literary 
friend, to whom the deceased had been well-known, 
was engaged during the darkening twilight of an au- 
tumn evening, in peiusing one of the publications 
which professed to detail the habits and opinions of 
the distinguished individual who was now no more. A 
visitor was sitting in the apartment who was engaged 
in reading. The sitting-room opened into an entrance 


hall, rather fantastically fitted up with articles of 
armour, wild animals and the like. It was when 
laying down his book and passing into the hall,through 
which the moon was beginning to shine, that the indi- 
vidual of whom I speak, saw right before him and 
in a standing posture, the exact representation of his 
departed friend, whose recollection had been so 
strongly brought to his imagination. He stopped for 
a single moment, so as to notice the wonderful ac- 
curacy with which fancy had impressed on his bodily 
eye, the peculiarities of dress, and posture of the 
illustrious poet." It resolved itself into a screen, 
great coat, shawls, and plaids. Had there been no ex- 
amination, it would have been a veritable ghost of a 
hapless poet. A club in the town of Plymouth 
used to nieet in a summer-house. One evening the 
president was dangerously ill, but out of respect, 
his chair v/as left vacant. In the midst of a discuss- 
ion the figure of the chairman entered, pale, haggard, 
and ghastly. It took the vacant chair, lifted an 
empty glass, pretended to drink the health of the 
goodly company, in dead silence, and then glided 
away. The members were horror-struck. They sent 
a deputation to the house, and found him dead. The 
visitation was unaccounted for, and was received as a 
veritable ghost story, until it afterwards came out, 
that while the nurse fell asleep, the sick man, in the 
delirium of death, did visit the club, then went horn® 
and died. 

James IV. was at Linlithgow, just before the fatal 
battle of Flodden Field. He was visited by a. 

GHOSTS. 267- 

Stranger, whom Pitscottie says, " was clad in a blue 
gown, in at the kirk door, and belted about him a 
roll of linen cloth, a pair of buskins on his feet, to 
the great of his legs, with all other hose and cloth 'con- 
form thereto ; but he had nothing on his head but 
long yellow hair behind and on his cheeks, but his 
forehead was bald and bare." He admonished the 
king not to hazard a battle, and in parting said, " Sir 
king, my mother has sent me to you, desiring you not 
to pass at this time where you are purposed, for if 
thou doestjthou wilt not fare well on thy journey, nor 
none that passeth witli thee." St. John was the adopt- 
ed son of the Virgin Mary, and seems to have been 
sent on a pacific en and. Readers of history will 
remember that the Scottish queen was opposed to 
ihe war, and this Avas a scheme to deter the king from 
waging war against the Southerns. 

Sir David Brewster, in his "Letters of Natural 
Magic," tells of a lady who once went into her 
drawing-room, and saw the im.age of her husband — 
then absent — standing by the fire, looking at her 
"seriously and fixedly." So sure was she of his identity, 
that she said, "Why don't you speak." He gave no 
response, but moved towards the window and dis- 
appeared. The whole was an optical delusion. She 
often saw a black cat whose existence was a myth. 
An apparition dressed in a shroud was a constant- 
visitant, yet all unreal outside of the mind. I have a 
relative, a man of candor and truth, who, about' 
thirty years ago, was travelling in Lincolnshire, at 
night, on the king's high way, and was accompanied for 


miles by a blue light, which he was sure was "a dead 
candle." It did not seem to have legs, but his imagi- 
nation detected a pale face of ghastly hue in the 
midsb, and swinging arms at its sides. I found out 
that he was travelling over a swampy country, and 
that "Mr. William O' Wisp" had been playing off a 
joke on the belated traveller, or kindly seeing him on 
the way home. On another occasion he was returning 
home, near midnight, when ho heard a crackling 
sound behind him. Turning round to ascertain the 
cause of it, he saw a sight so fearful that he could 
never be induced to describe it. He could not turn 
again towards home, and beat a retreat crab-like, 
for nearly three miles, until he knocked for admit- 
tance at his own door, when it suddenly vanished, and 
he was able to face around. A sort of inferential ex- 
planation may be found in the fact that he had been 
at a jollification, and possibly had been indulging in 
deep potations of usquebaugh, although he" wasna fou, 
but just had plenty." His sights were not those of 
Tam O' Shanter, in Alloway kirk, but the diffusible 
stimulant was the same, and with analogous results. 
Another time, under similar circumstances he was 
passing over the crown of a hill, late at night, near a 
farm-yard. The public road lay in the valley below, 
and along it a glimmering light was travelling. He 
knew that a "dead candle" was taking a walk, and he 
had often heard that if the spectator at such a time, 
would only put his foot on a stone which had never 
been moved, the light would not only arrest him, 
but it would pass in and out of his mouth, until the 

GHOSTS. "69 

"rooster" chanted his morning composition, as that 
gentleman is wont to do. In a spirit of bravado, 
the traveller did so, and instantly he was that sedent- 
ary thing, " a fixed fact," and a lurid flame exer- 
cised itself between his pharynx and dentals, occas- 
ionally going outside to get fresh air. When day 
broke, and the cock crew, it uttered a solemn state- 
ment of warning to him — refused him a certificate of 
character — and left him in a willy, dishcloth-like 
condition, with no hartshorn at hand to titillate his 
distended '-lostrils. 'J his solemn glimpse into the 
odd things of Lhose fellows, who seem to burn their 
own coal-oil, as related to me when a child, on a 
wintry night, made my hair creep, and the "sheeting" 
of my "dome of thought"' move, as if it wanted to be 
scalped. Since then I have no doubt but he was 
not as sober as a good christian should have been, 
and the panorama was ^enacted in his brain, with no 
charge for admission to the show. Were I within 
reach of his arm I dare not write the above. 

An uncle of mine used to tell me what trouble he 
and his neighbors had with a friend, who, on the 
night following New-Year's Day, old style, always 
had a terrible time with the devil. No doors, or bars, 
or bolts, or locks would keep him in, when three dis- 
tinct knocks came to the door at midnight. (These 
spectral marauders will insist on liaving three dis- 
tinct hours of call, viz : at the gloaming, midnight, 
and dawn). When the dread signal came, he tore 
around lively, and in a paroxysm of mingled terror 
and fury, went in a dog-trot to the hills, preceded 


by a hare. None dare follow him, but when morning 
came he returned with his clothes torn to shreds, 
bleeding from scratches, and the picture of an "used 
up" individual. All believed the hare was a transform- 
ed witch, sent by his Satanic majesty, (I like to be 
polite, knowing his potency) on this errand, as an 
avant courier, to bring ''poor old Joe" to yearly pen- 
ances. My exegesis of the matter was, that Joe 
*'spreed" it 365 days in the year, •• be the same, 
more or less," but on New- Year he had an extra 
maceration, and ''blue devils" took possession of him. 
As regards the knocks I kindly suggested that they 
were introduced into the narrative, by a poetic imagi- 
nation, by way of embellishment, and always made 
this statement, by a sort of hypothesis, to my uncle, 
with the back-door open, and my toes protruding 
therefrom, for, immediately afterward I was savage, 
ly followed by a miscellaneous collection of chat- 
tels, making parabolic curvatures in the air, and 
which were never comfortable in immediate relation 
to the personal 7ion-ego, especially that part generally 
appealed to, in juvenile corrections. A host of such 
ideal spectres, fill the mind of humanity. Terror 
magnifies the moving horns of a ruminating ox, be- 
hind a black stump, into a hideous ogre. A loose 
board on the side of a house, vibrating in the storm, 
in pulsating knocks — the branch of a tree, by friction 
on the walls, screeching out, flesh-creeping inter- 
ludes, in the night-breeze — the rusty gate hinges 
giving dolorous notes, with their echoes, to the fiends 
of the night. The splintered rail whirring like an 

GHOSTS. 271 

imp's wing, all putting "mettle in the heels" of the 
midnight traveller — the phosphorescence of a de- 
cayed log, in the sombre woods, sends dismay into 
the heart of a truant from home — the hooting night- 
owl, and the flickering night-fly, make phantasy 
All the air and earth with hobgoblins, and all the 
brood of unearthly spectra. In spite of education, 
and moral enlightenment, tens of tliousands, to-day, 
in Christendom, cannot shake themselves free from 
those fears of the machinations of the supernatural 
and intangible. The hermit Druid's experience is 
theirs : — 

"The deserts gave him visions wild, 
Such as might suit the spectre's child. 
Where with black cliffs the torrents toil, 
He watched the wheeling eddies boil. 
Till, from their foam, his dazzling eyes 
Beheld the river demon rise ; 
The mountain mist took form and limb 
Of noontide hag or goblin grim ; 
The midnight dark came wild and dread ; 
Swelled with the voices of the dead ; 
Thus the lone seer from mankind hurled, 
Shaped forth a disembodied world." 

The alchemists and magicians used their know- 
ledge of chemistry and optics to deceive. The most 
abominable mixtures were used, from ground human 
skulls, to boiled human blood, but those were only 
blinds to hide the skill which lay behind. Anyone 
who has seen, or read of the jugglery of the Hindoos 
and Chinese, not to speak of the slight of hand, of 
such as "The Wizard of the North," or the apparent 
reality of ''.Professor Pepper's Ghost," need not be 


told, how such Bcenes would affect an ignorant 
people, to wonder, amazement, and awe. The be- 
lief is real, even if ideal, and as far as the effect is 
concerned, might as well oe flesh and blood or 
any other substance equally perceptible. 

The specimen ghosts' history given above were 
sem. Another species of these genera are never 
seen but lieard. Sometimes they occupy a quiet 
nook in some lonely valley. Oftimes they take 
possession of the deep hold of a sea-going ship, or the 
dark labyrinths of a mine, or the subterranean pass- 
ages of decayed castles, and ruined abbeys. They 
are fond of stately and forsaken mansions, and with 
considerable selfishness, and refinement of taste, 
occupy the best room in the house. They scarcely 
ever reside in cottages or huts, and show in this 
considerable aristocratic feeling. Their shrieks have 
been heard in fearful crescendo and dimenwido tones, 
in the darkest hours before the dawn. Their dirges 
have been carried on the wings of the wind, and 
their doleful lamentations have pierced the wrack ot 
the tempest. They have filled "the grand old solemn 
woods," with their demoniac laughter, doubtless 
occasioned by the side-splitting jokes of facetious 
fellow-phantoms. Fantastic tricks with individuals, 
and furniture, have been their delight, and in many 
cases, they should have been tried for "assault and 
battery.'' What was fun for them, was almost death 
to many. Even good John Wesley's father had a taste 
of their pranks in his parsonage at Epworth. This 
ghost groaned as if in pain. It made the dishes dance 

GHOSTS. 273 

reels on the table. It gobbled liko a Uirkey, and 
danced immoderately without music. At first the 
noises were thought to be those of rats, and as blowing 
a dinner-horn was said to drive away all such vermin, 
terrible sounds were made by the horn for half a day, 
in all parts of the house. This enraged the goblin so 
much that he "kicked up rov/s" in the day-timo, as 
well as at night. I have no information how, or when 
the poor feilow rested. When being rebuked by 
Samuel Wesley as ''a deaf and dumb devil," and 
asked as to his intentions,he was invited into the study, 
if he had any complaint to make. This nickname 
and suggestion, only roused the ire of his ghostship^ 
for immediately afterwards, Mr. W — . "was twice 
pushed by it with considerable force." He made all 
brass, iron, and windows rattle when he came into a 
room, and after he left the wind rose, and roared 
around the house. Tliis faculty "of raising the wind,'' 
would have put envy into the airy noddle of /Eolus 
himself, if that blustering individual is still alive, and 
well. It occasionally took a turn at the hand-mill, 
but roguishly ground when it was empty. The family at 
last became so familiar with hi^ pranks that they christen- 
ed him "Old Jeffery." This "spook" was a staunch 
Jacobite. He was possibly the disturbed spirit of 
such a malicious and devil-possessed scape-grace 
cavalier, as "Bonnie Dundee," for when Wesley 
prayed for the King and Prince of Wales, "Old Jeffery" 
became furious. The spirit of Claverhouse, in unrest 
would have had congenial employment in perse- 
cuting Samuel Wesley. Senr., as Avell as his diatin- 


274 f^^ I'HorodUAi'Hs. 

guishcd sons, and tliiis contributed his mite to nip in 
the bud the English Covenanters, as he had en- 
deavoured to (io the Scottish lieroes. by fire and 
sword. John ^Vesley drew up and published an ac- 
count of the whole case, " after carefully inquiring into 
the particulars," but "without note or comment.'* 
Soutbcy in his "Life of Wesley" gives us many move 
facts than I have summarized. Samuel, brother of John, 
seemed puzzled about the matter, and concluded that 
**the end of spirit's actions is yet more hidden than 
that of men, and even this latter puzzles the most 
subtle politicians." His mother writes "I am not one 
T)f those that will believe nothing supernatural, but 
am rather inclined to think there would be frequent 
intercourse between good spirits and us, did not our 
deep lapse into sensuality prevent it." Southey ex- 
amined the circumstances and found no solution. 
.The celebrated Dr. Priestly calls it "perhaps the best 
authenticated, and best told story of the kind that is 
any where extant." 

No legerdemain, ventriloquism, or tiicky acoustics 
can explain it. 'i'he statements are truthful. The 
parties had no faar or credulity, except a belief in 
the supernatural. It was heard intermittently, for 
years by dozens of persons. The causes were search- 
ed for, by day and night, yet, never found. I am not 
inclined to think disembodied spirits indulge in 
childish, and aimless frivolities, and that a solution 
-could have been found in natural causes connected 
with the premises. All these freaks were neither 
miraculous, preternatural, nor ghostly notwithstanding 

GHOSTS. 275 

•*'thero are more things in heaven and earth than are 
dreamt of, in our philosophy." At the same time, 
there is a good deal of truth in Dr. Johnson's remark 
"that it is wonderful that 5000 years have now elapsed 
since the creation of the world, and still it is unde- 
cided whether or not there has ever been an instance 
of the spirit of any person appearing after death. All 
argument is against it, but all belief is for it. 

The Drummer of Ted worth was a troublesome ghost. 
A Wiltshire Magistrate had fined a drummer for a 
public nuisance, and confiscated his drum. After 
this he had no peace in his house. The drum bea^ at 
all hours, and persecuted men, women, and child, 
ren in their beds. Chairs and tables danced "French 
fours," in broad daylight, and in the presence of a 
crowd. A minister held divine service at the house 
every night about the time this ghost beat a tattoo • 
but at such times the drummer behaved himself like 
a Christian, until prayers were ended, and then his 
gymnastics would begin by hurling all kinds of 
household stuff in perfect abandon, at the minister. 
It was musically inclined, and seemed from its sing- 
ing to have a fair knowledge of music. In the pre- 
sence of Sir Thomas Cliamberlain, and others, after it 
beat the drum for three hours, a gentleman said 
"Satan, if the drummer set thee to work, give three 
knocks and'no more." This it candidly and honestly 
did. At last a witch seemed to trouble the demon, 
for the sounds indicated that he was pursued by a hag. 
He made the house vocal with the cries of "a witch ! 
a witch 1" He had not lost his mother tongue. The 


law holds L'ood that all creatures from man down- 
wards have enemies to prey upon them, and ghosts 
seems to be no exception to this rule. 

" Jjig fleas have little fleas on theii backs to bite 'em, 
Little fleas have less tlf^as, and so on injia/ium." 

The consolation lies in knowing that if poor hu- 
manity cannot c<(pias these disturbers of the peace. 
an unearthly bailift*"goes for them with a sharp stick." 
It is but just to add that when the real drummer was 
baJiished for crime, the alter ego also took its depart- 
ure, no doubt to vex some poor body in Botany Bay. 
Both Addison and Steele, Editors ot the ''Spectator" 
knew the circu.nstances to be true, but did not at. 
tempt to solve the enigma. It was not far to seek, 
if proper eniqury had been made. It is amusing to 
read volumes of such accounts, all of which might 
be traceable to natural laws, even were the evidence 
more explicit than it is. It should be remembered 
that not anytliing can be called supernatural simply 
because it may remain unexplained. What is a mystery 
to us may prove in the end, easy of solution, and in 
strict accordance with the laws of nature, operating 
before our eyes. The wonderful discoveries in regard 
to electricity, steam, light, spectroscopy, and the cor- 
relation of forces, are only as yet, twinkling stars, in 
the firmament of knowledge. Blazing suns of dazzl- 
ing intensity, will ''in the good time coming," throw 
out corruscations, athwart the dark abyss ot spiritual 
ignorance, so effulgent as to search every nook and 
cranny of that world to which we all are fast hasten- 

GHOSTS. 277 

ing'. THl' earnest contact of soul to soul, for weal or 
woe, whether in this world, or the one beyond, does 
not resolve itself into the ridiculous, the flintastic, 
or the grotesque, because ''life is earnest."' 

Life is a strange riddle of puzzling profundity, and 
a belief in unaccountable sights, as partaking of the 
*' uncanny." is not to be v/ondered at, in spite of all 
which is said about their absurdity. We perceive 
this in the plienomena of dreams, and in our visions 
of the night have faith in unearthly visitants. Some 
dreams arc, to us, so real as to become visions, and 
carrv with them strong convictions when we awake, 
notwithstanding all the reasonings of a subtle philo- 
sophy, in regard to their unsubstantial character. 
As a rule the reason is temporarily dethroned in sleep- 
ing dreams, as it is often in day reveries, and imagi- 
nation runs riot. Often, judgment, and common 
sense, however, predominate, and the mental powers 
are exalted in intensity, and vigor, far above the 
usual state in dreams, obeying all the moral laws of 
thought, and violating no rules of prudence or dis- 
cretion. Usually we have sensation in sleep, but 
little reflection. A sleeping man will wink at a 
lighted candle brought near his eyelids, and still sleep 
on. He will throw up his hands to defend himself 
from the irritation of a tickling straw, yet knows it 
not. A gentle manipulation of the ribs will cause a 
change of posture, but consciousness does not tell 
the reason why. At the same time, seas are sailed 
over, on phantom ships. Continents are crossed, as 
if on angel's wings. " The spangled heavens, a 


shining frame," are traversed with a greater rapidity 
than lightning. Untold dangers are avoided, how- 
ever inevitable they may appear. Poignant agony is 
felt for friends, it may be, slumbering in peace and 
quietness by our side. We may have glirnpses of 
beatific scenes, through the pearly gates, and up the 
golden streets, and have wafted to our ears music 
angelic, from harps of seraphin, or cherubim; or have 
our souls harrowed by wailings and lamentations of 
myriad souls rocked on cradles of misery, and in a 
moment a rap on the side, or a pi.ll of the ear. brings 
us, with a jolt back to earth again. A Canadian 
poetess has tiulysung: — 

" Dreams, mystic dreams, from whence do you come ? 
In what far land is your fair home ? 
I . From whence at night do you hither stray? 
Where do you flee at the dawn of day ? 
Ye ne'er can fold your wandering wings, 
You wild, unfathomable things."' 

A vexed question arises in regard to profound 
sleep. Does the soul then think ? Dougald Stewart 
holds that soul and body rest and sleep together. 
Locke expresses^a like viewr, for he says in regard to 
sleep, *'To think often, and never to retain it so much 
as one moment, is a very useless sort of thinking ; 
and the soul in such a state of thinking, does very 
little, if at all, excel that of a looking-glass, which 
constantly receives varieties of images or ideas but 
retains none ; they dis^appear and vanish and there 
remain no footsteps of them ; the looking glass is 
never the better for such ideas, nor the soul for such 

<;h<)sts. 279 

thoughts." At the sanie lime, it is dilficull to liolieve 
that the soul can become tlormant, and still exist. ' 
To think is necessary to its l>eing, and for it to be in 
lethargy, is not to be. We may not be conscious at 
all times of the workings of the active powers of the 
mind, but a lack of knowledi^e in this resi)ect does- 
not imply that such do not exist any more than do 
the fleeting thoughts of our waking hours, which 
come and go, and leave no remembrance. An old 
writer tersely says, " The thoughts of worldly affairs, 
and the intemperanv e most men commit in meats^ 
drinks, labors, exercises and passions, enfeeble and 
destroy the brisk, lively apprehensions, and stui)ify all 
the laculties of nature ; and particularly the memory 
and retaining power are so dulled and rendered fluid 
and oblivious, as not to conserve any impressions 
made thereon — as we see in drunken men, who, the 
next day, remember none of those loud vociferations ' 
and mad pranks they played over night. And you 
may as well argue, that such lewd people did not 
commit any such extravagances, because very often 
they are not sensible of them, after they come to be 
sober, as to think you do not dream, because some- 
times you cannot remember it when you wake." 
Addison, in the " Spectator/' pursues the same train 
of thought when he says, " Our dreams are great in- 
stances of that activity which is L.ttural to ^he human 
soul, and which it is not in the power Oi sleep to 
deaden or abate. When tlic man appears tired and 
worn out with the labors ot the day, this active part 
in his composition is still busied and unwearied. When 


the organs of sense want their (due repose and repara- 
tion, and the body is no longer able to keep pace with 
that spiritual substance to which it is united, the sou^ 
exert3 herself in her several ficulties, and continue^ 
in the action till she is again qualified to bear her com- 
pany." The opponents to this view affirm that the 
soul needs rest as well as the body. That is the point 
at issue. Docs the soul ever weary except in con- 
nection with the body ? Is it not probable that a dis- 
enthralled soul finds all necessary cnperative vigour 
in ceaseless activity ? Our internal organs have no rest 
night nor day. Did they depend on consciousness, 
for working orders, when we sleep, the heart would 
cease to beat, the lungs to exhale and inhale, the kid- 
neys to excrete, the stomach to digest, and the brain to 
act, then must death ensue. They have no cessation 
of labour, until the golden bowl is broken, or unii' the 
cvenmg, life draws over us, its sable mantle, v. hen t!ie 
last vesper bell chimes our requiem. 

Francis Power Cobbe, in her "Dreams in Poetry," 
shows the inventive genius of dreamers in unconscious 
as well as conscious cerebration. A critic condenses 
her ideas by saying : — 

" She contends that there are dreams whose origin 
is not in any past thought, but in some sentiment vivid 
and pervading enough to make itself dumbly felt even 
*n sleep, and that at the very least, one half the phe- 
nomena of dreams are simply the results of a real law 
of the human mind, which causes us constantly to 
compose ingenious fables explanatory of the phenome- 
na around us — a law which only sinks into abeyance, 


into the waking hours of persons in which the reason 
has been highly cultivated, and which resumes its 
sway even over their well-tutored brains when they 

Several curious and well-authenticated cases are 
cited by Miss Cobbe in support of her theory. One 
of these stories is the following ; — A lady who con- 
fessed to have been pondering on the day before her 
dream on the many duties which '* bound her to life" 
— a phrase which to her became a visible allegory — 
dreamed that life, a strong, calm, cru^l woman, was 
binding her limbs with steel fetters, which she felt as 
well as saw ; and death, au angel of mercy, hung hover- 
ing in the distance, unable to approach or deliver her. 
In this singular dream her feelings found expression 
in the following verses, which she remembered on 
waking, and which are quoted precisely in the frag- 
mentary state in which they remained on her memory • 

Then I cried with weary breath, 
Oh be merciful, great Death ! 
Take me to thy kingdom deep, 
Where grief is stilled in sleep, 
Where the \\eary hearts find rest. 

# « it- a- Mf # 

Ah ! kind Death, it cannot be 

That there is no room for me 

In all thy chambers vast 

See, strong Life has bound me fast * 

Break her chains and set me free. 

But cold Death makes no reply, 
. Will not hear my bitter cry ; ^ 

Cruel Life still holds me fast ; 
" Yet truje death must come at last, 
"* Conquer Life and set me free. • , • 


Here is another story, concerning a ilreani nhich 
resulted in the discovery of a missing will. 

"An instance of the renewal in sleep of an impress- 
ion of memory calling up an apparition, not the ap- 
parition to enforce it (it is the impression which causes 
the apparition, not the apparition which conveys the 
impression^ occurred near Bath half a century ago. 
8ir John Miller, a very wealthy gentleman died leav- 
ing no children, his widow had always understood 
that she was to have the use of his house lor her life 
with a very large jointure ; but no will making such 
provision could be found ?fter his death. The heir- 
at-law, a distant connection, natura\]y claimed his 
rights, but kindly allowed Lady Miller to remain for 
six months in the house to complete her search for the 
missing papers. The six montlis drew at last to u 
close, and the poor widow had spent fruitless days 
and weeks in examining every possible place of deposit 
for the lost document, till at last she came to the con- 
clusion that her memorv must have deceived her, and 
that her husband could have made no such promise 
as she supposed, 01 had neglected to fulfil it had he 
made one. The very last day of her tenure of the 
house had dawned, when m the grey of the morning 
Lady Miller drove up to the door of her man of busi- 
ness in Bath, and rushed excitedly to his bed-room 
door calling out, "Come to me ! I have seen Sir Jonn ! 
There is a will !" The lawyer hastened to accom- 
pany herback to her house. All she could tell him 
was that her deceased husband had appeared to her 
in the night, standing by her bedside, and had said 

GHOSTS. 2 8-^. 


solemnly, ''I'here is a will !' Wliere it was, remained 
as uncertain as before. Once more the house was 
searched in vain from cellar to loft, till finally, wearied 
and in despair, the lady and her friend found them- 
selves in a garret at the top of the house. ' It's all 
over,' Lady Miller said ; ' I give it up ; my liusband 
has deceived me, and I am ruined !' At that moment 
she looked at the lal>le over which slie was leaning 
weeping. ' This table was in hir^ stuviy once ! Let ns- 
examine it ! They looked, and the missing will, duly 
signed and sealed, was within it, ;ind the widow was 
rich to the end of her days. Tt needs no conjuror 
to explain how her anxiety called up the myth of Sir 
John Miller's apparition, and made him say precisely 
what he had once before really said to her, but of 
which the memory had waxed faint." 

The only class of dream which escapes tlie mytlr 
making faculty, is the purely intellectual dream, which 
takes place when we have no sensation or sentiment 
sufficiently vivid to make itself felt in sleep, and the 
brain merely continues to work on, as some one of the 
subjects suggested by the calm studies of the previous 
hours. Such dreams, as Dr. Carpenter remarks, have 
a more uniform and coherent order than is common 
to others ; and it may even liappen in time that, in. 
consequence of the fieedom from distraction result- 
ing from the suspension of external influences, the 
reasoning processes may be carried on with unusual 
vigour and success, and the imagination may develop, 
new and harmonious forms of beautv. Under this 
head, then, come all the remarkable cases of dreams- 

- 1 


of the problems solved by Condorcet, and many 
others. Nearly every one who has been much inter- 
ested in mathematical studies has done something of 
the kind in his sleep, and the stories are numerous of 
persons rising in sleep, and writing out lucid legal 

Beside the picturing of marvellous things, passively 
beht;ld, it seems that narcotics can stimulate the un- 
conscious brain to the production of poetic or musical 
descriptions of them ; the two actions being simul- 
taneous. On this point, Miss Cobbe enlarges as fol- 
lows, with special reference to Coleridge's Dream 
poem of Kubla-Khan ; — 

*' Here we have surely the most astonishing of all 
the feats of this mysterious power within us ; and 
whether we choose to regard it as a part of our true 
selves, or as the play of certain portion of nerve- 
matter in either case the contemplation of it is truly 
bewildering. AVhat truth there may be in the well- 
known stories of ' Rosseau's Dream,' or of Tartini's 
* Devil Sonata,' I cannot pretend to decide. In any 
case very remarkable musical productions have been 
composed in sleep. But take the poem of *' Kubla- 
Khan." Remember that the man who wrote it, in 
only a few of his multitudinous waking productions 
rose into the regions of high poetical fancy or any- 
thing like inspiration of verse. Then see him merely 
reading, half-asleep, the tolerable prosaic sentence out 
of Purchas' ' Pilgrimage ;' Here the Khan Kubla 
commanded a palace to be built, and a stately garden 
thereunto, and thus ten miles of fertile ground were 

GHOSTS. 28? 

enclosed in a wall.' And dropping ins book from this 
mere bit of green sod of thought he suddenly springs 
up like a lark into the very heaven of fancy, with the 
vision of a paradise of woods, and wateis, before his 
eyes, and such a sweet singing breaking from his lips 

as, — 

" The slirulo-.v of the dome of pleasure 
Floated iiiul'.vay o'er the waves.'' 

mterspersed with wierd changes an J outbursts such 
as only music knows : — 

•'* It was an Abyssinian maid. 
And on lier dulcimer she played, 
Singing of Mount Abora ! " 

Consider all this, and that the poem of which this is 
the fragment reached at least the length of three hun- 
dred lines, and then say what limits shall be placed 
on the powers which lie hidden within our mortal coil ? 
This poem of " Kubla-Khan " has long stood, though 
not quite alone, as a dream poem, yet as for the largest 
ar.d most singular piece so composed on record." 

To conclude, Miss Cobbe says, "Take it how we 
will, I think it remains evident that in dreams, except 
those belonging to the class of nightmare, wherein 
the will is partially awakened, we are in a condition 
of entire passivity ; receiving impressions indeed 
trom the work which is, going on in our bra'ns, but in. 
curring no fatigue thereby, md exempted from all 
sense of moral responsibility as regards it. The in- 
strument on which we are wont to play has slipped 
from our loosened grasp, and its secondary and al- 


most etiuiilly wondrous powers have become manifest. 
It is not only a finger organ, but a self-acting one; 
wliicli, while we lie still and listen, goes over, more or 
less perfectly, and with many a quaint wrong note 
•and variation, the airs which we i)erformecl on it yester- 
day, or long ago." 

We need not wonder then that dreamers often mis- 
take the pha/itiismata of dreams for real ghosts, and 
unearthly visitors. Tiie unreal seems as substantial 
as the objects of the waking moments, and often re- 
<iuire8 a process of reasonini; after we are awake to 
convince us of their visionary n.iture. Associations 
of all kinds and degrees come and go in panoramic 
distinctness. Nightmare and its uninvited horrors, 
transfix us with terror. All that is a necessary con^ 
diiion, is a loaded stomach, or a troubled mind. Kven 
Macbeth's unpleasant experience may be ours. 

" Why do I yield to that suj^^estion, 

Whose horrid ima^e does unfix my hair ; 
And make my seated heart knock at my ribj, 
Against the use of nature. 

My thought, 
Whose murder — yet is but fantastic, 
Shakes so my single soul." 

Although physical causes generally occasion all 
sorts of dreams, and although dreams often are found 
to "come true," it does not follow that there is a 
necessary connection between all dreams, and subse- 
<iuent events. At the same time, it is possible, that 
often visions may be the operations of mind upon 
mind, during those moments of life, in which the soul 


is most easily artected, and most impressible, to exter- 
nal influences and causes, and thus dangers have often 
been avoided, benefits secured, and good accomplished. 
It will be observed that my belief is in favor of the 
theory, that the spirit-world is in communication with 
the immortal of earth ; and that mental picturings 
can be produced by the excitations ot spiritual con- 
tact, so real as to produce impressions of illusions, and 
apparitions, and yet, such having no substantial revtlity 
apartfrom the receptive and cognizant mind. Consider- 
ing the intimacy of mind with its own phenomena, it 
is marvellous how ignorant we are of its working and 
laws. There is no branch ot human knowledge, 
which Las made so little progress, as that of meta- 
physics, and psychology. Old systems of mental 
philosophy have been exploded in one age, ^ only 
to be installed into favor the next. The v,ircle is 
being perpetually traversed, but its area has not been 
extended to an appreciable degree. Merciless critics, 
with mental scalpels have cut and carved to pieces 
old systems, and dissected to the death, the cherished 
dogmas of the different schools. They have choked 
out of existence many of the beloved creations of 
fond masters, but these philosophic thugs have placed 
no worthy, and substitutionary ideal existence, in their 
room and stead. They demolish the edifices at whose 
j>ure altar many giant-minds have worshipped, but no 
other erection takes their places. The destructive 
will is with these mental iconoelaets, or else they have 
only ability to overthrow, but not to build up. They 
know of, and analyze the errors of theorists, but 


psychico-neology is the apex, base, and facets of the 
jewels of their faith. Their Alpha and Omega of 
research ends in rampart unbelief. Ihe old struggle 
between realists and idealists, and the tio-betweens. is 
still carried on, as was the case centuries ago, pnd no 
new light has made a reft in the clouds of the logo- 
machic battle. All other enquiries show in their 
results, gigantic strides in advance, but the knowledge 
of the mind, and of the external world in relation to 
it, is as much a matter of speculation^ and hypothe- 
sis, as it was in the dark ages. One philosopher raves 
after Kant, and another swears by Locke. One ac- 
cepts Berkely, and another attaches his faith to the 
Hamitonian creed. One, like McCosh or Mansel, 

plunges into intuitions, as into an iron-clad for protec- 
tion, when no other explanations can conveniently be 

found ; and another takes refuge in etherial transcend- 
entalism too unreal to anchor any human faith. It 
would be natural to suppose that some exact cognit- 
ions of self, and its relations would have been found, 
long ere this speculative age, by the myriads of think- 
ing beings who have preceded us, from Moses to Her- 
bert Spencer ; and that such groupings in the dark 
would have been matters of ancient history. There 
is still ignorance of a terra inco(jnita, whose confines 
have not been explored. We have been cooped up 
in a " pent up Utica," with the great ocean of entities 
between tlie dual existences of mind and matter con- 
sisting to us of imagmation, or faith. ^Notwithstanding, 
it is a wondrous expanse, on which no mortal voijwjeur 
has ever sailed, and into who^e profound depth no 

GHOSTS. 289 

plummet has ever been dropped by human hands. 
This consists of the connection between that mind, 
which has no weight, measurement, or sensible pro- 
perties, and that bodily creation, possessing all these 
in common with all inanimate creation, plus the phe- 
nomena of life, equal living humanity. What is this 
unexplored something ? It holds the key that opens 
the gates which admit into ghostland. It may be 
called odic force, magnetism, electricity, or what we 
will, for a name is naught. Without it, there is no 
definite chemical groupings, neither vegetable nor 
animal life, and where it is absent, power may be 
present, in a restricted sense, but there is no construc- 
tion. Cohesion, gravitation, crystalization, plant 
selection, and brainal molecular activity, are only 
manifest m its working presence. Worlds roll by its 
might, and human thought is subservient to its behest. 
Deprive the human body of it, and the spiritual 
essence takes its flight. Yet, it is not soul. Is it 
matter ? Does it partake of the nature of both, or is 
it only the bond of union ? Is it the condition of all 
life to possess it, or is it the occasion of vital manifes- 
tations ? Up through the different gradations of so- 
called homogenous to heterogenous matter — from 
constructive plant groupings, to zoophytic propaga- 
tion — and from this vegeto-animal production to ani- 
mals, of which man is the highest earthly develope- 
ment — all throb, and respond to this active and potent 
agent, only subservient to the Highest will. Animal 
life may be so low, as to have no known intelligence, 



and so high az to endow a brute with reasoning 
powers, far above instinct, enabling it to provide for 
unfdrseen emergencies more promptly, and the appli- 
ances being considered, as efficiently as dominant man, 
yet this life is not soul. It cannot isolate abstractions, 
and plume its pinions for flights into the far beyond. 
Its actions show that it finds its mentality curbed in 
the reflective, and its aspirations checked at the 
threshold of the contemplation of infinite space, eter- 
nity, creation, and being. Yet, the action of the brute 
is not merely automatic, for it often shows high intelli- 
gence, although not endowed with moral attributes. 
Man has that life — that electrical action — that heat — 
that light — that motion, which may be convertible 
terms, in common with mineral, vegetable, and animal 
life, and which assumes new forms in disintegration, 
or decay, but is not lost forever. 

This subtle existence is the connecting link between 
the m<r and not me. In low forms of life it follows in- 
variably, if undisturbed, consistent law. As it as- 
cends the scale, powers of apprehension crop out. I 
pervades all known space, and is no sluggard, for it 
has no cessation of labour, and needs no Sabbath. It 
pulls to pieces, and it builds up. It changes one form 
of beauty to another, and out of the same material can 
produce diametrically opposite qualities, as if by slight 
of hand. It builds up monad after monad, molecule 
after molecule of matter, into definite forms, each after 
its kind, whether it be granite rocks, basaltic columns, 
faceted4^artz and diamond, or stillated snow-flakes, 

GHOSTS. ' 291 

nor does it cease here, for it makes cells, (eacli a 
worker,)and with them builds up plants, and, with more 
than a painter's skill, colors flowers, fashions trees full 
of umbrageous glory, and if left undisturbed makes no 
mistakes as to genera or species. From the j)roto- 
plasm of the ovum springs generation, life, activity, 
food, blood, bone, flesh, fats, glands, nerves in all 
their variety, and completeness, but this somctldng is 
the immediate instrument in its vital power, of the 
great Original. It is not merely a mechanical cur- 
rent, which flows throughout the universe, but, it 
rises to an intelligent work, which asks no respite from 
its labour. Light, heat, and sound, are only known to 
our perceptive- consciousness by undulatory motion. 
Magnetism or electricity is manifested in the same 
way. It travels with great rapidity, through various 
media, including the nerves, and brain of man. Is it 
not life in the lowest form? It maybe the base 
of the pyramid, and at its apex is animal vitality. 
While man or animal is in the body, such cannot think 
without its presence and aid, man cannot move a mus- 
cle without invoking its power, and the automatic ac- 
tion of the heart, lungs, and all the internal organs, 
are subservient to its behest, and empire. 

After the consciousness has fled forever, from our 
earthly tabernacle, it asserts for a time its power, and 
makes nerves, brain, and muscles act by its impulses. 
It locks the doors, and fastens the windows, long after 
the tenant has vacated the premises. The soul has 
gone away without it, and the body soon ceases to 


possess it. It is not absolutely necessary to the for- 
mer, and when it leaves the latter, as a /iving. acHntj 
principle, decay and disintegration commence to de- 
molish the clay tenement, yet, in spite of death, the 
body will be a vwdinm through which the subtle aura 
can permeate, even, after it has returned to its primi- 
tive elements, and has becom.'^ " dust to dust." I 
may startle the reader by suggesting that by it, animal 
life is maintained, or that animal lift is only a more 
exalted manifestation of the same power, in active 
exercise. This view will account for many, if not all, 
the phenomena of our " fearfully and wonderfully 
made " organizations. This trinity of soul, spirit, and 
body has a quorum in two out of the three constitu- 
ents of man, for the transaction of business. The 
soul, in certain states, may be temporarily absent 
from the body, on a voyage of discovery, and explor- 
ation, and yet vitality of body remain, or it may have 
expansive power to search realms otherwise far be- 
yond mortal ken, and animal life still be in full tonicity. 
This third substance is " the keeper of the house," 
and has a kinship to all life in the kingdom of law. I 
have no sympathy with those philosophers who see 
only force in these manifestations. I can have no 
conception of force abstractly considered, and as 
having no reference to substance. It is of little 
importance whether this substance be atoms, ether, 
or an undulatory nondescript. This motive power 
Is conditioned, and universal, and in one of its multi- 
form statical and dynanical conditions is called animal 

GHOSTS. 293 

magnetism, or uerve force, and a tctiiinn quid be- 
tween the .lormal thinking being, and the outer world. 
This view explains the wonderful phenomena of som- 
nambulism, clairvoyance, trance-waking, trance-sleep- 
ing. These states of soul need no organs of percep- 
tion to see, hear, taste, smell, or feel. No impediments 
obstruct the vision. I^istance is ho hindrance. Space' 
is annihilated, and all the particulars of locality are 
in a moment of time, as well known to the sul)ject, as 
if the soul stood looking at theni. P^ven the teelings 
of strangers are ascertained, and temporary ailments, 
described without an error of observation, or judg- 
ment. In some states, the vital action of the body is 
in full vigour — in others the busy workers seem to 
have suspended their labors, but in all, the mind is 
more active than ever, and its i)Owers expanded. It 
seems ty live, not merely within the confines of a 
circumscribed frail tenement, but embraces in its 
cognitions the " telegraphic universe." These won- 
derful phenoniena are beyond dispute, explain them 
how we may, and with these states of mind there is 
not only unusual talent displayed, but enlarged ca- 
pacity, and powerful faculty, independent of bodily 
restrictions. There must be a medium through which 
this is done, above and beyond nerve constituents, and 
nerve force, but possibly analogous to the latter, and 
is the element in which the soul acts. Sensation, or 
rather its occasion, is carried along the bodily nerves, 
and its swiftness can be measured, and as these carriers 
of molecular action can be excised without perma- 


ncntly r.fFecting the feeding being, and ar. galvanism 
magnetism, or electricity, exist independently of nerve 
matter, which transmits the excitant of sensation, or 
volinon, yet this nerve substance is only a medium, 
motor or sensorial, of not merely force, but its sub- 
stratum, therefore analogy does not forbid us to sup- 
pose that in certain states or conditions of the soul, 
it can, by this means, explore fields of observation 
far beyond its ken, in ordinary circumstances. This 
theory would explain the perplexing question of 
mediate and immediate perception. The I becomes 
cognizant imincdiately of this essence, which, to some 
extent partakes of its nature, in a low form. It is an 
instrumentality, and connecting link between the im- 
mortal soul, and its disintegrating receptacle, one of 
its principal attributes being a capability of immediately 
apprehending soul on the one hand, and gross substance 
on the other. I am no believer in the so-called 
** physical basis of life," but on the contrary hold that 
life is more than a condition of matter, or a f(jrce de- 
pendent on it. It is not subservient to other forccB, 
and is not merely co-relative with them. It is an 
entity displaying a high power, oii a more elevated 
plane of operation, and more extensive in its work- 
ings. This all-pervading force is generic, of which 
animal life is an exalted specific manifestation. The 
monadic force in the minerals obeying the law of 
never-failing forms, and types, each after its kind, just 
as the vegetable and animal do in an ascending scale, 
until we rise from physic force to psychic force — from 
blind, undeviating law to unconscious cerebration, or 
** latent thought," where is the arcana of the spiritual, 
conscious' and eternal, beyond mortal ken in " the 
shadows of the dark mountains.'" 

,CA A' A DA. 

THERE is no law more evident in its operations, 
than that ofprogressionon the one hand and decay- 
on the other. There is no resting place for the plant, 
or animal, in this world of change, from the time it 
becomes an existence, until it returns to its primal 
elements. When it ceases to grow it commences to 
decay. This law is also applicable to nations. They 
do not normally spring into existence in a day. In 
the dawn of government it is first manifest in the 
family ruled by the venerable patriarch. Then follows 
the more complicated rule of chiefs ; then of warriors, 
lords, artd autocrats, whether manifested through 
republics or despotisms, and that wonderful complete- 
ness of executive and law-making power resident in, 
and constituting a limited monarchy. Such growth, 
liberal views, and consolidation of petty nationalities 
are doubtless elements of popular strength. Rome 
absorbed even the rude tribes in its vicinity, and 
added daily to its greatness. Macedonia, under Philip 
and Alexander, like a political gourmand, swallowed 
up all the then civilized world, and became a mighty 
empire. Russia emerged from the Scandinavian 
forests, savage and untutored ; but since Peter the 
Great, worked in Saardam, Holland, as a ship-builder, 
like the " man devil" fish, so graphically described by 


Victor Hugo in his " Toilers of the Sea," it haf 
thrown out its tentacles, seizing Finland, Poland, Cir- 
cassia, Northern Asia, Independent Tartary, Khiva, 
and would have grasped poor Turkey by the throat,with 
its relentless claws, and choked it to death, were it 
not for the British and the French gunpowder 
scorching its outstretched arms, on the heights of 
Sebastapol. The United States have shown the 
game love of power, and conquest, down to the pur- 
chase of ice-ribbed Walrussia, and longing after 
quaking torrid St. Thomas. Britain has had an itch 
for following out the same policy from the days 
of the Saxon Heptarchy, until now its Colonies and de- 
pendencies are found one unbroken glorious circle oj 
representative institutions, and political freedom. We 
believe this principle is being carried out in the con- 
federation of these provinces, and that we as a people 
have taken one step forward in the grand march of 
nationalities. Our work of absorption has commenced, 
and will doubtless be carried forward to its final issue 
of increased power and influence in America. We 
are now the second power on this Continent, and the 
third in maritime wealth, upon the globe. It is true 
we have not the population of Brazil or Mexico, but 
numerical strength does not constitute true national 
power. Of all the nations of Europe, Britain wields 
the most influence, but France, Austria, Prussia and 
Russia have each as great, or a greater population ; 
yet , what Congress meets on Continental Europe at 
which the British Plenipotentiary does not sit ? 

CANADA. 297 

What war is waged, or what radical governmental 
changes take place in any part of Christendom, but 
the question is anxiously asked "What will they say 
in England ?" You may twirl the globe to find them ; 
these little specks, the British isles, are but "freckles," 
yet what a power ! This is not from their area, nor 
their position, but because of their advanced civiliza- 
tion, their perfection in the arts and sciences, education, 
and comparatively high-toned morality and earnest 
Christianity. And so rruch respected and revered 
are "our mother's soil, our father's glory," in all parts 
of Britain's heritage, that like the human heart, 
the ?ove for staunch Britannia, and her institutions, 
pulsates as strongly, and supplies a living patriotism 
as undying in Canada, and Australia, as within the 
very shadow of St. James' palace. Four millions of 
people such as we are, can and will be felt as a power 
not to be despised. Our free schools cannot be 
excelled, and our grammar schools and universities, 
will practically compare favourably with those in 
Europe, venerable with age, and from "whose walls 
have issued those who have won undying renown. 
Canadian youths have already made a mark for 
themselves, not only on tented fields, but also in the 
walks of science, abroad as well as at home, beneath 
the flapping wings of the mighty eagle, whose omin- 
ous shadow falls upon a great segment of this Con- 
tinent, as well as beneath the shaggy mane of the 
mighty lion, whose majestic tread shakes the nations 


of the earth. In the respect due to sacred things 
we excel our neighbors, and even England. Our 
average of crime is comparatively low. We enjoy 
an admirable municipal system, light taxation, res- 
ponsible government, full representation, and that 
liberty which is not inconsistent with the general 
welfare of the subject; for unlimited freedom is license, 
and that is the threshold to anarchy. When every 
one can do as he pleases,'and there is no restraint 
on mdividual action, then brute force is sure to 
rule, and there is no law but the first instinct of 
self-preservation. Our judges are not political trick- 
sters, but men of honour and a terror to evil doers. 
We hold the advisers of the viceroy responsible for 
their acts, Victoria propounds no injudicious meas- 
ures for our acceptance, and intermeddles with naught 
that pertains to our internal affairs, except in regard 
to any measures affecting the good of the Empire, 
as well as our own. We are not intermittently ruled 
by a despotic chief, nor equally by intelligent citizens 
and lowest scum of society, that is by universal 
suffrage. We feel and appreciate the great boon thus 
conferred upon us, for our mutual advantage in the 
bright future. We can look back upon the bitterness, 
heartburnings, rancour, and jealousies of treacherous 
nondescripts, which have disgraced us in the past, 
irrespective of names, or invidious distinctions, as 
a hideous nightmare, and gaze prophetically through 
the dim vista of coming years, with brighter hopes 
and more joyful anticipations. 

CANAPA. 299 

*' Regions Caesar never knew, 

Our posterity shall sway. 
Where his Eaj;lcs never tlew, 

None invincible as they." 

It is evident that modes of thouglit, or in other 
words education, aftects climate, and climate, tlie 
physique of the inhabitants, either for good or evil. 
P'.ducation aijd intelligence drain marshes, and choke 
off miasma — clear forests and level mountains — drain 
cesspools and ventilate by-lanes, and thus improve 
health, and morals, and manliness. This to a certain 
extent is true, but I have often thought that isother- 
mal lines might indicate different conditions of 
men, as well as different temperatures. The climatic 
lines drawn by the thermometer are really boundar- 
ies for differences in humanity, independent of 
nationality. The temperate zone produces the more 
perfect man, in all his parts ; and the farther north in 
that zone, the higher is the mentality, the more 
powerful is the physical frame, and the more endur- 
ing is the nervous force. We do not lay out this zone 
by distance from the equator, but by the degrees of 
heat or cold ; for the mountains of A.ffghanistan, Upper 
India, Circassia, and Switzerland, can be classified 
to be in the sanie zone of latitude, as Wales, or the 
Highlands of Scotland. All these cold countries, 
wherever they may be, produce a hardy race ; and even 
level countries, if they possess an invigorating climate 
may be classified in the list. Hot climates enervate, 
cold climates brace up. The Torrid Zone deprived 


the human system of tonicity, the moderate gives re- 
cuperative power, and increased vitality. The former 
gives flaccidity to the muscle, but the latter gives 
cumulative strength. The former cripples sustained 
efforts of the brain, but the latter is constantly bring- 
ing to the rescue, on life's battle field, powerful re- 
serves. Tlic former scarcely ever permits the mind 
to rise above mediocrity, but the latter has produced 
brain power whose manifestations in literature, art, 
science, and on the gory field, as well as in the 
political arena, are the heritage of immortality. As 
conquerors, the northern nations have a wonderful 
record. Greece might have its petty jealousies, 
Athens might vex Sparta, and Bcotian Thebes look 
in proud disdain on Corinth, and schisms, heartburn- 
ings, and intestine wars might be the order of the 
day, but all had one bond of union, and that was 
being (Greeks. No sooner did the Southern Persians 
display their glittering spears, and burnished shields 
on the European side of the Hellespont, than minor 
differences were forgotten ; and shoulder to shoulder, 
and foot to foot, they showed a noble heroism : for 
the bloody gates of Thermopylae, the gory plains of 
Marathon, and the ensanguined waves of Salamis 
told to the wondering nations, that Greece was living 
Greece still. But, mark the sequel, victory made it 
effeminate, and the hardy Northern Macedonians 
swept it with the besom of destruction, until *' none so 
poor as do it reverence." Rome, the home of the 
stately, prosaic, and stern, rose by absorption, from a 

CANADA. 301 

small city to be the mistress of the world. The 
Southern Carthaginians almost knocked for admission 
at its gates, with bloody swords, yet Roman hands 
finally sowed over Southern Carthage, the salt of deso- 
lation. But its day of doom came, and the Northern 
Gauls, athletic, brave, "giants upon the earth" put 
their heels upon the necks of the conquerors, whose 
Empire stretched from Britannia to beyond the Gan- 
ges, and from Mount Atlas to the walls of Antinous. 

The Gauls had their conquerors in the still more 
northern Scandinavians orSclavonians. The fiery Danes 
carried fire, and sword, and victory, into England. The 
Normans followed at their heels, and alter many a 
bloody battle, Scotland, and Wales remained uncon. 
quered. Bonaparte found his match in Moscow, and in 
British troops at Waterloo. ; 

In the recent struggle in the United States, the 
•splendid muscle of the northern troops told against a 
brave foe, and were it not for the strong right arm 
of those southern sons of the mountains of Western 
Virginia, Kentucky, Georgia, Tennessee and other 
rugged districts, the struggle would have been of short 
duration. Prussia has at the present time a race of 
Teutons, who, with swift vengeance, conquered in the 
«*nd, its more southern neighbour. Canadians are 
the Norsemen of the continent, and have the men- 
tal power, and muscle, and courage, that can con- 
quer equality, and repel .superiority. The mighty 
eagle of the South may flap one wing in the Atlantic, 
and daintily dip the other in the Pacific, and open its 


* . ' ■ 

capacious maw for southern prey, but if it spreads 
the gorgeous plumage of its tail, north of its legiti- 
mate domain, a truncated appendage may be the 
result, which will detract from the beauty of the noble 
bird. > 

I Tell me of a country on the face of this earth that 
can produce such a noble record ? — We do not except 
the New England States, Prussia, and Scotland, either 
as regards the ratio ot the population attending educa- 

' tional institutions — the expenditure of public monies — 
and the high literary standing of our teachers and 
professors. Need we wonder then that extensive 
correspondence is carried on among ourselves, and 
with foreign countries ? And here let me direct at- 
tention to the best means, towards the encouragement 
of emigration into British North America. L is 
useless for us to expect immigrants to settle in great 
numbers, within the boundaries of the old Dominion. 
We have, it is true, large tracts of country to occupy ; 
but how illiberal the policy adopted in comparison 
to that of the neighboring Republic ! It will be found 

. that the thrifty Germans — frugal Danes — and Nor- 
wegians — and our energetic countrymen — who would 
bring to us willing hearts, and strong arms, and often 
plethoric purses, must of necessity seek homes in a 
country, and under a government with which they 
have no sympathy, because of "the penny wise and 
pound foolish" policy of the responsible politicians 
of the late Provinces, and of the "New Dominion." 
A step has been taken, recently, in the right dir xtion, 

CANADA. 303 

and it is to be hoped that no "fit" of retrogression will 
throw a "glamour" over the eyes of the multifarious 
executives, of our country, and urge them to pro- 
vide for present exigencies, at the expense of future in- 
calculable and lasting benefit, to ourselves, and our 
countrymen. We, in Ontario and the Eastern 
Provinces, at present, have only to offer (with nu- 
merous restrictions), wooded and rocky sections 
of country, which are dearly [bought as a free gift 
"wiihout let or hinderance." The United States offer 
freely rich prairie lands to those who come to them 
from the loom, the work-shop,and the highly cultiyated 
rural districts of Europe, and who are mere novices 
with the axe, and to whom the forest offers no in 
ducement. These men will not look forward with 
complacency, to years of unremitting toil, penury, iso- 
lation,broken down constitutions, and conditions of so 
called " free grants," which " lead to bewilder and 
dazzle to blind." 

This drawback is neutralized by the great North- 
West, rich in agricultural resources, and minerals. 
This country has an area of about 127,000 square 
miles of prairie, and wooded lands. It is somewhat 
larger than Great Britain,''and capable of sustaining a 
population as great. There is a sufficient quantity of 
wood in the country for all the necessities of settle- 
ment — some woody ridges being over 100 miles in 
length, by 40 miles in breadth. The wood is larch, 
spruct, oak, white pine, cypress, and*poplar. The 
hill ranges known as Riding and Duck Mountains 


rise i,ooo feet above Lake Winnipeg, and i,6oo feet 
above the sea. Lake "W innipeg is 300 miles long by 
50 broad. The most important rivers which flow into 
it from the westward are Red River, Assiniboine 
river, and the Saskatchewan river. By means of these, 
and numerous other tributaries, Lake Winnipeg drains 
an area of country considerably larger than all the eastern 
Provinces (450,000 square miles). The Saskatchewan, 
584 miles from its mouth, is 600 yards broad. The 
rate of the current is 2^ miles per hour, and its 
depth at the forks 10 feet. The country is intersected 
by rivers of a magnitude to astonish those who have 
never inquired into the resources of this magnificent 
country. The geological foundations of the country 
are the Laurentian, Silurian, Devonian, Cretaceous, 
and Tertiary, in the order in which I have enumerated 
them — of these the first Is the most important : i^ 
traverses Canada from north-east to south-west. The 
mountains are called the Laurentides. The name 
is derived from the St. Lawrence, on account of their 
proximity to it. ijhese series of rock are only found on 
this Continent, elsewhere, in the Adirondack moun- 
tains, a small portion in Arkansas, and near the 
sources of the Mississippi — also found in Finland, 
Scandinavia, and the north of Scotland. The rock 
runs through our country — north of us — north of 
Lakes Huron and Superior — east of Lake Winnipeg, 
and north of the so called North West to the Arctic 
Ocean, forming mountains from 2,000, to 3,000 feet 
high. This rock is composed of crystaline schists 



(Gneissoid and Homblendic) with large stratitiecl 
masses of a crystaline lock comi3osed of Lime, 
and Soda Felspar. The Devonian series are known 
principally on account of the salt springs ; but the 
other series are too well known to need description. 
Coal, wood, salt, fertile soil, a genial climate, and 
navigable rivers, and lakes, should surely be strong 
inducements for settlement. Some may say, how can 
the climate be genial when the country is situated so 
much farther north than we are ? Our climate is 
severely cold — can their mean annual temperature 
be less so ? It should be remembered however, that 
we cannot calculate the cUmate of a country from 
lines of latitude alone, for surrounding circumstances 
modify climate ; as for example, the proximity of moun- 
tains, or the lakes, or the sea. The height above the 
ocean may change the whole cHmate of a country. It 
is well known to sea-faring persons that an iceberg of 
only a tew acres in extent, will chill the atmosi)iiere 
for many miles around ; so towards the end of May, 
or during the first part of June, large floes of ice be- 
come detached from the shores of the upper Lakes — 
float down near our western frontier, and by the 
absorption of, and rendering latent the solar rays, 
frosts often cut down remorselessly the tender sliootst 
of Lidian corn, potatoes, and barley. Now, beyond 
these inland seas these influences are never felt, but 
other and more favorable causes operate to modify 
the climate — the comparatively low elevation of tlic 

3o6 CANADA. 

North West above the soa level — the most of the 
prairies arc not more that 730 feet above the ocean — 
the influence of the warm westerly winds froni the 
Pacific Ocean — and from the (Tiilf of Mexico, through 
the Mississippi valley, all conduce to this end. The 
Rockv Mountains, which have an altitude of 10,000 
to 14,000 feet above the sea south of 49" north 
latitude, suddenly fall to 2,500 feet north of that lati" 
tude, and offer no serious obstacle to the passage over 
them of clouds laden with moisture and warmth 
from the evaporating and boiling caldron — the Pacific. 
The mean summer temperature, based upon several 
years observation, is at Toronto 64^^; while at Red 
River it is 68° and to the westward several hun- 
dreds of miles, although on an elevated plateau the 
winters are so mild that buffaloes, mustang ponies^ 
and cattle feed and keep fat during all the year. The 
climatic line which passes through Ontario reaches 
far north of us. Need anv more be sai 1 of this inter- 
esting land? 

Our defences will yet be to us a serious matter. 
We have a subtle, crafty, active power near us, anxious 
to annex us, and using all the pressure of hostile 
tariffs to make us discontent with our relations. — 
This state of things has been to our benefit, for we 
have found other markets, and have become more self- 
reliant, but, a crisis may come, and hostilities may 
arise from Imperial or Colonial complications, that 
will rnrapel us to draw the sword. 


A Night of Terrors ^04 

A Photograph of the Soul 14; 

Auld Lang Syne .201 

Balmoral ^ 


Ciimming . . . . " 

Canadian Poetry * 




Dr. Dick the Philosopher .g 


Ghosts and their Relations ' . 229 

Jottings by the way ^ 

Punshon . . . 

^ 5^ 


Syme .... ••••.' 
^ 215 

The Anglo Saxon in the English La/iLniaL^e 12c 

The Knight of the Awl .* ^^q 

Thomas Carlyle -68 

Under a California tree ^^ 

Virginia and its Battle-fields in 1S64 .... 66 


What was it ? . l^.