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was an honest fellow,- he told Bolton that he was offered a hundred pounds to be blind and deaf next night. Take the money, was the answer, and I shall protect the place. Midnight came—the gates opened as if by magic—the interior doors, secured with patent locks, opened as of their own accord—and three men with dark lanterns entered and went straight to the gold. Bolton had prepared some flax steeped in turpentine—he dropt fire upon it, a sudden light filled all the place, and with his assistants he rushed forward on the robbers, — the leader saw in a moment he was betrayed, turned on the porter, and shooting him dead, burst through all obstruction, and with an ingot of gold in his hand, scaled the wall and escaped.'
«• That is quite a romance in robbing,” I said, and I had nearly said more, for the cavern scene and death of Meg Merrilees rose in my mind, — perhaps the mind of Sir Walter was taking the direction of the Solway too, for he said, “How long have you been from Nithsdale? • A dozen years. Then you will remember it well. I was a visiter there in my youth; my brother was at Closeburn school, and there I found Creehope Linn, a scene ever present to my fancy. It is at once fearful and beautiful. The stream jumps down from the moorlands, saws its way into the free-stone rock of a hundred feet deep, and, in escaping to the plain, performs a thousand vagaries. In one part it has actually shaped out a little chapel, — the peasants call it the Sutors Chair. There are sculptures on the sides of the linn too, not such as Mr Chantrey casts, but etchings scraped in with a knife perhaps, or a harrow-tooth.
-Did you ever hear,' said-Sir Walter, ' of Patrick Maxwell, who, taken prisoner by the King's troops, escaped from them on his way to Edinburgh, by flinging himself into that dreadful linn on Moffat water, called the Douglasses Beef-tub?'— Frequently,'I answered; "the country abounds with anecdotes of those days; the popular feeling sympathizes with the poor Jacobites, and has recorded its sentiments in many a tale and many a verse.' – The Ettrick Shepherd has collected not a few of those things,' said Scott, “and I suppose many snatches of song may yet be found.' -C. I have gathered many such things myself, Sir Walter, and as I still propose to make a collection of all Scottish songs of poetic merit, I shall work up many of my stray verses and curious anecdotes in the notes.'—S. “I am glad that you are about such a thing; any help which I can give you, you may command; ask me any questions, no matter how many, I shall answer them if I can. Don't be timid in your selection; our ancestors fought boldly, spoke boldly, and sang boldly too. I can help you to an old characteristic ditty not yet in print :
• There dwalt a man into the wast,
And O gin he was cruel,
He gat up and grat for gruel.
They brought to him a gude sheep's head,
A bason, and a towel ;
I winna want my gruel."
“ C.-- I never heard that verse before; the bero seems related to the bridegroom of Nithsdale
• The bridegroom grat as the sun gade down,
The bridegroom grat as the sun gade down;
: “ S.-- A cowardly loon enough. I know of many crumbs and fragments of verse which will be useful to your work; the Border was once peopled with poets, for every one that could fight could make ballads, some of them of great power and pathos. Some such people as the minstrels were living less than a century ago.'— C. · I knew a man, the last of a race of district tale-tellers, who used to boast of the golden days of his youth, and say, that the world, with all its knowledge, was grown sixpence a-day worse for him.'— S. · How was that? how did he make his living? by telling tales, or singing ballads ?' -C. · By both: he had a devout tale for the old, and a merry song for the young; he was a sort of beggar.'— S. · Out upon thee, Allan—dost thou call that begging? Why, man, we make our bread by story-telling, and honest bread it is.'”
I ought not to close this extract, without ohserving that Sir F. Chantrey presented the original bust, of which Mr Cunningham speaks, to Sir Walter himself; by whose remotest descendants it will undoubtedly be held in additional honour on that account. The poet had the further gratification of learning that three copies were executed in marble before the original quitted the studio: One for Windsor Castle — a second for Apsley House — and a third for the friendly sculptor's own private collection. The casts of this bust have since been multiplied beyond perhaps any example whatever.
Sir Walter returned to Scotland in company with his friend William Stewart Rose; and they took the way by Stratford-upon-Avon, where, on the wall of the room in which Shakspeare is supposed to have been born, the autograph of these pilgrims may still, I believe, be traced
Publication of Mr Adolphus's Letters on the
Authorship of Waverley.
DURING Scott's visit to London in July 1821, there appeared a work which was read with eager curiosity and delight by the public-- with much private diversion besides by his friends—and which he himself must have gone through with a very odd mixture of emotions. I allude to the volume entitled “ Letters to Richard Heber, Esq., containing critical remarks on the series of novels beginning with Waverley, and an attempt to ascertain their author;” which was soon known to have been penned by Mr John Leycester Adolphus, a distinguished alumnus of the University then represented in Parliament by Sir Walter's early friend Heber. Previously to the publication of these Letters, the opinion that Scott was the author of Waverley had indeed become well