Imatges de pàgina

loved the innocent scrutiny of youth- little boy came to my side and put his ful eyes ; so I allowed them to des- hand in mine; and, willing to know: cant at freedom on my southland more of a man of whom I had heard garb, and wonder what could make so much, away I walked with my me choose my seat by the martyr's barefooted guide, and soon came tombstone, a place seldom visited, within sight of the mansion of save by men in a devotional frame of Warlsworm. mind. A venerable old dame, with It was a rough old house built of a straggling tress or two of grey hair undressed granite, and covered with flowing from beneath her mutch or a slating of coarse sandstone. The coif, laid aside her distaff, and ad- smoke, despairing to find its way. vanced to free me from the intrusion of through the windings of a chimney, a dozen or more of her curly-headed almost choaked with sides of bacon descendants. The admonishing tone in and soot, sought its passage in many which she said, “bairns, bairns,” with a curl and turn along the roof, and, the rebuke of her eye, accomplished finally descending, streamed out into her wishes; the children vanished the pure air through window and from my side, and retired to a little door. Groups of black cattle, after round green knowe or knoll, which browzing on every green thing which rose on the rivulet bank in the middle the garden contained, and trying to of the village, and seemed appro- digest the withered thatch which depriated for rustic games, pitching pended from the sides of the barn the bar, casting the stone, for leaping and stable, stood lowing knee-deep and for wrestling...“ A bonnie har- in a pool of muddy water before the vest afternoon, sir,” said the Galwe- mansion, and looking wistfully. on gian matron, “ but ye would be wiser the green hills and the golden harvest to come and rest ye in a comfort-, around them. The fowls, undisable house than sit on the cauld mayed by foumart or fox, plundered stane, though it lies aboon the dust the com which hung drop-ripe and of ane of the godly auld folk of the unreaped in the field; while a multisaintly days of Galloway, or maybe tude of swine, breaking, in the despeye might like the change-house bet ration of hunger, from their pens, ter to birl yere sixpence and be be- ran grunting through the standing hadden to none, and I cannot say grain, crushed the growing potatoes that I can advise ye."

in unwieldy joy; and finally cooled I was prevented from replying by their sides, and fulfilled the scripture another of the village dames who proverb, by wallowing in the mire thus broke in on our parley. “Birl which encompassed as with a fosse; his. silver in the change-house !- this miserly mansion. wherefore should he ? what can hin- The door stood open. In summer, der him from slipping cannilie away in the pastoral districts, few doors up the brae to the gudeman of are closed; and with the privilege Warlsworm? he's either dead or as which a stranger claims in a hospitgood as dead ; and if he's no depart. able land I entered the house. ed, so much the better; he will leave Wheeled towards the fire, and bed the world with a perturbed spirit, ded thick with sheepskins and soft for sore, sore, has he stuck to the cushions, stood the lang settle or ruse earth, and loth will he be to leave tic sofa; and on it lay a man bald and his gowd and his gains, and his feeble with age; and kneeling by bonnie broad lairdships; and who his side I saw a fair-haired girl, her kens but the sight of a stranger hands clasped, and her large blue breaking his bread and drinking his eyes fixed with a moist and momilk may make him die through tionless gaze on his face. This was downright vexation for the unwonted the owner of the mansion, the farwaste? Andrew, my bonnie lad, take famed laird of Warlsworm; and the this strange man up to auld Warls- maid was his niece, as remarkable worm's hall door; I would gang for her gentleness and beauty, as her. myself, but I vowed never to cross relative for his grasping and incessant his threshold or enter his land, since greed. As my shadow darkened the he cheated my ain cousin out of floor, she looked up, and motioned the green holms of Dee ; black be me to silence and a seat. I accordhis cast, and bitter his doom !” A ingly sat down, and looked with an eye of deep interest on the touching darkened his father's door, that he scene before me. There lay Age, his should presume to darken mine? face gross and covetous, his mind Alas! alas! the bonnie haughs of seeking communion with the riches Orr, and the fair holms of Dee, will of the earth, while his body was fast be wasted on loons and limmers, and hasting to dust, and his soul to its I shall no find repose where all men final account; and there knelt Youth, find rest. Aye! aye! my hall will glowing in health and ripe in beauty, soon be a changed place; there will her tresses bright, and flowingover her be fizzenless tea instead of weel buts neck, like sunshine visiting a bank of tered breakfast brose; a pudding lilies ; her hands, white and shapely, with spices and raisins, for a gallant and small, clasped over a white and haggis dropping with fatness and full a perturbed bosom; while from her of marrowy strength; and for the long dark eye-lashes the tears of sor- pleasant din of the spinning wheel #row descended drop by drop. On there will be the sounding of fiddleboth, a young man in a homely garb, strings and the leaping of wanton but with a face comely and interest- feet. Strangers will feast at my suping, sat and looked, and looked too per-board, where strangers never with a brow on which might be read feasted before; and auld men will more of love for the maid than of sore shake their heads and say, 'Away row for the man.

fly the riches of honest Warlsworm. The old man uttered a groan, And putting his hands over his eyes, turned on his couch, half opened his as if to hide the hideous picture eyes, and said, “ Bessie, my bairn, of extravagance which his imaginam let me have hold of thy hand; my tion had painted, and uttering groan sight is not so good as it ought to be; succeeding groan, he stretched hims and I think I see queer things, that self at full length on the lang settles should not be seen by a man when His niece turned pale as she be.. he lies down to die. But I have held him writhing under the indlicwronged no man; I took but what tion of the spirit which she mistook the law gave me; and if the law grips for a deadlier pang, and thus she with an iron hand, it's the worse for addressed the young man, who seems them that made it. I thought I ed to remain there that he might heard the footstep of the young por- gaze without intermission on her beautioner of Glaiketha; he'll be come to ty. “Oh, Willie lad, if ye wish for borrow gold and to wadset land. wealth in this world and weal in the But Bessie, my lass, gold's scarce ane to come-rise up and run.” The and land abundant; no that I refuse youth leaped to his feet, stood with the minted money when the interest his lips apart, his left foot forward, will do thee good, and when the se- and his whole face beaming with joy curity's sicker; sae gang thy ways, at being commanded by so sweet a my wean, to the old pose ahint the tongue. “Oh run, William, run; fly cathud, or hear ye me; there's a sada over moor and moss, and seek and dle-bag of good red gold riding on bring auld Haudthegrup, a man gift the rannel-tree that has nae seen sun ed in prayer and conversant with or wind these seven-and-twenty sum- godly things;_ he will cheer my mers.” “Oh! forget the cares of the uncle's spirit. For oh, they're gladworld," said the maiden, with a voice some when they get thegither. I smothering with sorrow, “ and think have seen them sit in the howe heart of your health. This is not the young of winter, laying schemes for gripping portioner of Glaiketha seeking for and guiding wealth, when the snow gold to cast away in eating, and was on the hill, and the icicle on the drinking, and dancing, or in more house-side, with less fire to thowe evil pursuits; but a stranger youth them than would warm

a bairn's come to repose him all night as breakfast. Oh, run, William, run, strangers do, and recommence his tell him to hasten; for the sands of journey in the morning." “ Repose life are nearly out; and that my unhim,” re-echoed the old man, his voice cle talks of the gathered gold of faith deepening, and his faded eyes bright- and the set siller of redemption; and ening, as he spoke. “Have I wranged that's nae symptom of health with any of his kin, that he comes hither to him.” The youth looked at her for riot on my substance ? have I ever a moment, then away he darted from

the door, climbed the hill with the make yere auld blood course boldly swiftness of a fowl in its flight, tar- in yere veins. Then the grass will ried for a second on its summit to grow green, the bushes will bud, look back on the dwelling, nor were and the primroses will blow on the his glances unrewarded; he then var bonnie burn bank, and ye'll get yere nished along the moor" to seek the feet among the braw blooming gohome of auld Haudthegrup.

waps, that lie scattered o'er the face This devotional auxiliary soon of the earth, like as mony pieces of made his appearance; he seemed a a spendthrift's gold. Sae cheer up personification of penance and fa- man, ye would do wrong to die and mine. He was tall and lean, with a so many blessings awaiting ye.” frame of iron, a forehead villanous The laird of Warlsworm sat erect low, and eyes small, restless, and for a moment; the prospect of life, glimmering about in quest of gain, and the hopes of future gain, passed like those of a cat seeking prey in by him like a bright pageant; hip the twilight. His nose was sharp eyes sparkled with that unholy light anul thin, like the style of a sun-dial; by which Mammon sums his treawhile his lips, though very broad, sure, and he stretched forth his hand were too scanty to cover a seam of to clutch the visionary gold, which teeth as rusty as the jaws of an un- deceitful fancy heaped up before him. used fox-trap, and wholly unac- But nature could not sustain the quainted with the luxury of the pas- effort; the light faded in his eyes, toral district, the flesh of lambs or his hand sank, and his head declined, ewes, unless when a friend's house and, sinking on the cushions, he muthad the scourge of his company. tered, “Na, na, it winna do; it winna He carried under his arm a mighty do; I maun away to the worms, and Bible, garnished with massy clasps my bits of bonnie gold will get a of iron, and entered the abode of his fearful scattering:" and, fixing, his dying friend with the satisfied look looks on the old bag of coin, which of a man proud of his gifts, and was suspended in the chimney, he conscious of the extensive influence lay for a while in woeful rumination, of his intercessions. Peace be and thus proceeded : " Aye, aye, among you," said the goodman of ye'll no hang lang in that cozie place Haudthegrup, and may God claim now; the hand of the spoiler will his ain in his blessed time and way; come, and thy braw broad pieces when the grain's ready let it go to the which I gathered with care and with threshing floor, and when the grapes sorrow, and regarded as gods, will are ripe, take them to the wine-press.” gang to the silk shop and the maker So saying he made a stride or two, of golden gimcracks glancing with and, looking in the face of his ancient polished stones for woman's neck friend, thus proceeded to comfort and bosom." And, shutting his eyes him. “Bless me, laird of Warls- in despair, and clutching his hands worm, ye're no going to leave us; in agony of spirit, he resigned himleaving us, too, when golden days self to his fate. are at hand? Never was there such Meanwhile the devout twin-broan appearance of a harvest of gold, ther of Mammon seated himself in and the precious things of the earth, an old chair, laid his Bible on his all ripening and getting ready for knees, uncovered his head, placed thy sickle and mine. Cheer up man, his long iron fingers on the clasps, ye'll hear the chink of gold in yere and, with a prolonged preliminary left lug for mony a bonnie year yet. cough, which hypoerisy had taught Would ye lie there, and let the to imitate the listless and weary end breath sough away frae atween your of a dull sectarian sermon, he opened lips, like a cow strangled with her the volume. He glanced his eye tether in a field knee-deep of clover? around, to see if his auditors were Look me in the face I say; bankers composed, and commenced his search are breaking, and the credit of cat- for a chapter befitting the perilous tle-dealers is cracked-gold will be state of his friend. I was seated begold soon, and the rate of interest side him, and thus I heard him conwill rise in Galloway. The crouse verse with himself, as he turned over and ringing frosts of winter will the leaves. “A chapter fit for a soon come to purify the air, and sinner's state !-I mauna read about


repentance, nor speak of the benefits bonnie links of Orr, and the gowany of redemption. He'll never forgive braesides of Dee. Many a tug, and me for directing his thoughts to such many a toiled brow, has it cost him strange objects." The laird uttered to get them ; but the strength of man a low groan, and the devout man cannot endure like the hills, nor his proceeded with his mutterings.- spirit flow for ever like a running « He's going gear ; he's going gear; stream. And talking of ruming he winna shoot over the coming mid- streams, that reminds that night; he'll be a stretched-out corse, Miller Macmillan owes me a year's and Bessie Lamond, his niece there, a rent, past on Tuesday; gar Jack braw rich heiress before the morning Candlish gang and fetch it: the millight. She'll be a weel tochered lass, ler's a sicker ane; he thinks my dam when auld Gripagain travels. Let me is nearly run, and that my wheel of exsee, there's Hurleyhawkie, a rich land istence lacks the water of life, and sae and well watered; there's Auchen- he'll keep up the rent till my head's ling, a dreary domain it's true, but happit, and then wheedle or swear there's gallant shooting on't, though thee out on't. So that's settled, and it bears little but craneberries; then my spirit's all the calmer for it. And there's Wyliehole, and the sixteen now for thee, lass, ye'll be a rich acre parks of Warlsworm; forbye quean, Bessie, and the lads will bails and bonds, and gathered gold; like ye nae the waur because he -my sooth Bessie, my lass, many a who lived before ye had a gathering gallant will cast his cap at thee.” eye, and a sicker grip. But ye maun And he glanced his sharp considerate never wear a towering bonuet with a eyes on the young maiden, to whose long feather ; for that is an abominamind her uncle's danger seemed alone tion in devout eyes, and a sad drain present. Aye, aye,” he resumed, for the pocket; and sair I slighted ashe's a welfavoured lase, and I'll war- bonnie Jenny Duff for the pride of rant has a gift of knowing on't ; deil her apparel : wear the snood of a doubt of that; but I am not so very maiden singleness as lang as ye can, auld, and have been single for seven lassie; and, if ye inaun be a wife, wear year, and, bating a sad cough, which a douce hood or a devout mutch; I can mend when I like for sixpence, ye'll find ane of yere grand-mother's, and sundry grey hairs, the lass may treasured by among my bonds; for have sillier woosters than me. When I loved my ain mother better than I cock my bonnet, and put on my ever I loved gold; ye'll hardly credit crousest coat, and give my horse a that, Bessie; and I love thee too, tasting of corn, and then a tasting my ain sweet sister's wean.” He laid of the spur, I think the quean will his arm around her neck, looked full no be a draps-blood to her uncle if in her face, with a kind and a glistenshe say me nay. And the lassie, too, ing eye, and the demon of lucre is-modest of demeanour; she wears spread his wings to forsake the mannae silver in her shoon, nor frights sion where he had lived so long. the fowls with the feathers of her But it was otherwise ordered. The oap; and weel I mind it was her poor weeping girl knelt over him, thrifty mother's boast, that she should and wiped away from his face the never sit on a sark till she could spin tears which flowed from her own ane. I'll warrant her a gallant lassie, eyes, for tears never flowed from his, and a good guider of gear. I should and hid her face in his bosom with like to lead her to a brankan bridal.” many a bitter sob. And, resuming his search of a “ Ah, ye waster hussey!" exclaimsuitable chapter, he withdrew his ed the laird, in a tone above his looks from the maid, who, with brim- strength, “ wherefore wipe ye my ful eyes, a troubled brow, and qui- face with a damask napkin, when a vering hands, ministered to the sick cloth three threads to the pound man.

is too good for a wadset about to be Her pure sincerity of heart won its redeemed like me. And see, as I way to auld Warlsworm's bosom, hope to be saved, if ye are not confrozen as it seemed, and shut up re- suming the good dry wood which I solutely against the charities of na- kept for the cozie winter uight; ture. " Ah, Bessie, lass,” he mure ground-elding (dried turf)is good ured, “thy uncle maun leave the enough to warm such an old sapless bough as me, which the feller's axe ment for a fitting and seemly text; is fast lopping away from the green but the divine meekness, and charity, tree of existence.” This appearance and self-denial, and scorn of all terof unwonted profusion smote sore restrial grandeur, which inspire its on the heart of the parsimonious old pages, rejected all community of man, and in a tone of rebuke and feeling, aud obliged him to seek conbitterness he continued his discourse. solation under the splendid and os“I may waste my breath—and I tentatious dispensations of the Mosaic ought to leave some for a scrap of law. Spoiling the Egyptians," I prayer, it may help me where I am heard him mutter, as he hastened going; I may waste my breath, along, “ the heathen Egyptians of Bess, I say, in counselling ye how their jewels of silver and jewels of to chuse a husband. When a wo- gold, a meritorious deed; -making the man's eye is bright her ear is deaf. molten calf, a piece of dark idolatry Take not a man, Bess, who counts and a waste of precious metal :kindred four generations back, he'll spoiling the Amalekite, a rich and call his ancestor a gentleman, and a pagan people, a pleasant act and spill the brimming cup of thy fortune an acceptable. The temple, aye, aye, in justifying his descent. Nor yet the temple of Solomon, the roof marry a man who scorns his ances- thereof was of fine cedar, the pillars, tors; the man who mocks his fore- of ivory, the floor of pure silver, and fathers tramples on their dust. I the walls of beaten gold,- this has hold a father's fair name equal with often consoled me, and, doubtless, hoarded siller. Above all things we will console him. It would be pleanot a lawyer, lass; ye should aye sant to die with a vision of this strive to mend your fortune, and bet- golden palace before him.” Here he ter your fame. Think not of a sailor, raised his head and said audibly: for he thinks there is no Sunday in “ Let us begin the worship of Him five fathoms of water, and finds a on High, by reading in his praise love in every land. Shun, too, the first Kings, chapter the sixth.” And, soldier, for shining scarlet, golden elevating his voice, he chaunted forth shoulder-knots, and a hat filled with the history of the building of Sofowls' feathers, will consume thy lomon's temple, adorning it with gold and fly away, with thy happi- the prolonged tone and quavering ness; and, oh, what a gowk he grace-notes of an ancient Cameronian maun be, who stands up to be shot professor. Nor did he fail to express at for saxpence a day, Sunday in his own admiration at the profusion cluded. But marry, lass, for all of precious metal, by dwelling, with women love to be married, were it a delight that seemed unwilling to only for the sake of having somebody depart, on the passages recording to scold at, and to bear the fault for the overlayings of the wall with gold, their folly,--wed, I say, a strong hand- and the altar, and the floor. As he ed chield, who can keep the crown of proceeded, the eye of old Warlsworm the causeway, and make himself be looked on his own sooty rafters, and obeyed at his own fire-side. A can- on his coarse unhewn floor, and on nie homely lad, who can clip seven the ark which contained his meal; score of sheep while another clips six; yet what were they, covered, as his kens the buttered frae the bare side imagination made them, with beaten of the bread; loves nought so well gold, compared to the immeasurable as his own wife, but the knotting of riches of the Jewish temple. Devohis own purse-strings; and who fears tion fell prostrate before the divinity the Lord, and can back five bushels of wealth, and the man who had not of barley."

five hours to live leaped to his feet, This grave and worldly coun- smote his hands together, and exsellor fairly exhausted himself, and, claimed, “Oh Lord, what o’gowd ? laying his head on the cushion, and what o’gowd?"-"Aye lad, and pure fixing his eye on his bag of gold, gowd too,” responded Haudthegrup, which common fame calculated at casting the Bible from him as he a thousand pieces, remained silent spoke, and pacing round the room while that devout person, Haudthe- with a proud look, and an augmented grup, commenced family devotion. stride. He had examined the New Testa. At this lamentable conclusion to

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