Oldalképek
PDF
ePub

CONTENTS

OF VOLUME SECOND.

CHAPTER IX.

PAGE
Early Married Life — Lasswade Cottage - Monk Lewis —

Translation of Goetz von Berlichingen, published – Visit
to London - House of Aspen - Death of Scott's Father
- First Original Ballads — Glenfinlas, &c. — Metrical
Fragments — Appointment to the Sheriffship of Selkirk-

..............1798–1799, 1

shire ....

CHAPTER X.
The Border Minstrelsy in preparation - Richard Heber –

John Leyden — William Laidlaw - James Hogg — Cor-
respondence with George Ellis - Publication of the Two
First Volumes of the Border Minstrelsy.... 1800-1802,

47

CHAPTER XI.
Preparation of Volume III. of the Minstrelsy — and of Sir

Tristrem - Correspondence with Miss Seward and Mr
Ellis — Ballad of the Reiver's Wedding - Commence-
ment of the Lay of the Last Minstrel - Visit to London
and Oxford — Completion of the Minstrelsy of the Scot-
tish Border........

.......... 1802-1803,

87

MEMOIRS

OF THE

LIFE OF SIR WALTER SCOTT.

CHAPTER IX.

Early Married Life - Lasswade Cottage - Monk

Lewis -- Translation of Goetz von Berlichingen, published - Visit to London - House of Aspen - Death of Scott's Father First Original Ballads - Glenfinlas, 8c. Metrical Fragments Appointment to the Sheriffship of Selkirkshire.

1798–1799.

Scott carried his bride to a lodging in George Street, Edinburgh; a house which he had taken in South Castle Street not being quite prepared for her reception. The first fortnight, to which she had

VOL. II.

looked with such anxiety, was, I believe, more than sufficient to convince her husband's family that, however rashly he had formed the connexion, she had the sterling qualities of a good wife. Notwithstanding the little leaning to the pomps and vanities of the world, which her letters have not concealed, she had made up her mind to find her happiness in better things; and so long as their circumstances continued narrow, no woman could have conformed herself to them with more of good feeling and good sense. Some habits, new in the quiet domestic: circles of Edinburgh citizens, did not escape criticism ; and in particular, I have heard herself, in her most prosperous days, laugh heartily at the remonstrances of her George Street landlady, when it was discovered that the southron lodger chose to sit usually, and not on high occasions merely, in her drawing-room,

- on which subject the mother-in-law was disposed to take the thrifty old-fashioned dame's side.

I cannot fancy that Lady Scott's manners or ideas could ever have amalgamated very well with those of her husband's parents; but the feeble state of the old gentleman's health prevented her from seeing them constantly; and without any affectation of strict intimacy, they soon were, and always continued to be, very good friends. Anne Scott, the delicate sister to whom the Ashestiel Memoir alludes so tenderly, speedily formed a warm and sincere attachment for the stranger ; but death, in a short time, carried off that interesting creature, who seems to have had much of her brother's imaginative and romantic temperament, without his power of controlling it.

Mrs Scott's arrival was welcomed with unmingled delight by the brothers of the Mountain. The two ladies, who had formerly given life and grace to their society, were both recently married. We have seen Miss Erskine's letter of farewell; and I have before me another not less affectionate, written when Miss Cranstoun gave her hand (a few months later) to Godfrey Wenceslaus, Count of Purgstall, a nobleman of large possessions in Styria, who had been spending some time in Edinburgh. Scott's house in South Castle Street (soon after exchanged for one of the same sort in North Castle Street, which he purchased, and inhabited down to 1826) — became now to the Mountain what Cranstoun's and Erskine's had been while their accomplished sisters remained with them. The officers of the Light Horse, too, established a club among themselves, supping once a-week at each other's houses in rotation. The young lady thus found two somewhat different, but both highly agreeable circles ready to receive her with cordial kindness; and the evening hours passed in a round of innocent gaiety, all the arrangements being conducted in a simple and inexpensive fashion, suitable to young people whose days were mostly laborious, and very

« ElőzőTovább »