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pillow. In the morning her foot and ancle are red with blood, but a deluge has swept away every trace of stain from the dewy grass. From this period Mordaunt is missed, and Minna is as distraught as her relative Norna. An enquiry for the lost youth is set on foot; and supposing that Norna may be able to furnish some clue to the mystery, even the recluse Mertoun is stirred to seek her at St. Ninian's ruined church. Of which place the description is truly in the style of the author of Waverley :—
"After the church of Saint Ninian's had been denounced as a seat of idolatry, and desecrated of course, the public worship was transferred to another church; and the roof, with it's lead and it's rafters, having been stripped from the little rude old Gothic building, it was left in the wilderness to the mercy of the ele ments. The fury of the uncontrouled winds, which howled along an exposed space of shifting sands, for the soil resembled that which we have described at Jarlshoff, very soon choked up nave and aisle; and on the north-west side, which was chiefly exposed to the wind, hid the outside walls more than half way upwards with mounds of drifted sand, over which the gable-ends of the building, with the little belfrey, which was built above it's nave, arose in ragged and shattered nakedpess of ruin.
"Yet, deserted as it was, the Kirk of Saint Ringan's still retained some semblance of the ancient homage formerly rendered there. The rude and ignorant fishermen of Dunrossness observed a practice of which they themselves had well nigh forgot the origin, and from which the Protestant Clergy in vain endeavoured to deter them.-When their boats were in extreme peril, it was common amongst them to propose to vow an awmous, as they termed it, that is, an alms, to Saint Ringan; and when the danger was over, they never failed to absolve themselves of their vow, by coming singly and secretly to the old church, and putting off their shoes and stockings at the entrance of the church yard, walking thrice around the ruins, observing that they did so in the course of the sun. When the circuit was accomplished for the third time, the votary dropped his offering, usually a small silver coin, through the mullions of a lanceolated window, which opened into a side aisle, and then retired, avoiding carefully to look behind him till he was beyond the precincts which had once been ballowed ground; for it was believed that the skeleton of the saint received the offering in his bony hand, and shewed
his ghastly death's head at the window into which it was thrown.
"Indeed, the scene was rendered more appalling to weak and ignorant minds, because the same stormy and eddying winds which, on the one side of the church, and had, in fact, heaped it up in huge threatened to bury the ruins with sand, quantities, so as almost to hide the sidewall of it's buttresses, seemed bent on uncovering the graves of those who had been laid to their long rest on the southeastern quarter; and, after an unusually hard gale, the coffins and sometimes the very corses, of those who had been interred without the usual cearments, were discovered, in a ghastly manner, to the eyes of the living."
Here Mertoun finds the Reim-kennar employed on an unholy spell; taking a portion of the sheeted lead from the corpse of her great progenitor, Ribolt Troil, a hero of the 15th century, during which she sings a striking incantation; and, in answer to his questions, he is mysteriously told to go to a certain spot at Kirkwall on the fifth day of the Fair; and when he "requires further proof to induce his obedience, Norna whispers a word in his ear, which produces an effect almost magical.-A shift of the canvass restores us to the Troils, and we see Magnus conducting his adored daughters to visit Norna at Fitful Head; to obtain the restoration of Minna's health. This journey, and it's circumstances, are replete with incident, which our limits forbid us to detail, The singular abode of the Pythoness is a picture by Salvator,-and discloses one of the favourites of our author, an unseemly being, half goblin, half hu
"As he spoke the door opened, and displayed, to the alarm of Brenda, and the surprize of Minna herself, a squaremade dwarf, about four feet five inches high, with a head of most portentous size, and features correspondent,-namely, a huge mouth, a tremendous nose, with large black nostrils, which seemed to have slit upwards, blubber lips of an unconscionable size, and huge wall eyes, with which he leered, sneered, grinned, and goggled on the Udaller as an old acquaintance, without uttering a single word. The young women could hardly persuade themselves that they did not see before their eyes the very demon Trolld, who made such a distinguished figure in Norna's legend."
A scene of apparently magical in
cantation takes place; and the result is that Minna is wonderfully restored; which, though not understood by her friends, arises from an intimation that Mertoun is not slain, and from assurances which afford hope to the disconsolate girl. Norna, however, will not suffer her visitors to profane her roof by eating food or remaining during the night, and they are driven forth to a cheerless journey homewards. Their adventures, in which Triptolemus and Halcro again bear a part, are entertaining, and forward the denouement; and the lamentations of the former are ludicrously droll:
"Master Magnus Troil,' said Triptolemus, when a second cup had given him spirits to tell his tale of woe, I would not have you think that it is a little thing that disturbs me. I came of that grain that takes a sair wind to shake it.-I have seen many a Martinmas and many a Whitsunday in my day, whilk are the times peculiarly grevious to those of my craft, and I could aye bide the bang; but I think I am like to be dung ower a'thegither in this damned country of your's,-Gude forgie me for swearing, but evil communication corrupteth good manners.' "Now, Heaven guide us,' said the what is the matter with the Udaller, man; Why, man, if you will put your plough into new land, you must look to have it hank on a stone now and then You must set us an example of patience, seeing you come here for our improvement.'
"And the de'il was in my feet when I did so,' said the Factor; I had better have set myself to improve the cairn on Clochnaban.'
"But what is it, after all,' said the Udaller, that has befallen you!-what is it that you complain of?'
"Of every thing that has chanced to me since I landed on this island, which I believe was accursed at the very creation,' said the agriculturist, and assigned as a fitting station for sornors, thieves, whores, I beg the ladies' pardon, witches, bitches, and evil spirits.'
"By my faith, a goodly catalogue,' said Magnus; and there has been the day, that if I had heard you give out the half of it, I should have turned improver myself, and have tried to mend your manners with a cudgel.'
"Bear with me,' said the Factor, 'Master Fowde, or Master Udaller, or whatever else they may call you, and as you are strong be pitiful, and consider the luckless lot of any inexperienced person who lights upon this earthly paradise of yours. He asks for drink,
they bring him sour whey,-no disparagement to your brandy, Fowde, which is excellent.-You ask for meat, and they bring you sour fish, that Satan might choke upon,-You call your Labourers together and bid them work; it proves St. Magnus's day, or Saint Ronan's day, or some infernal saint or other, or else, perhaps, they have come over the bed with the wrong foot foremost, or they have seen an owl, or a rabbit has crossed them, or they have dreamed of a roasted horse,-in short, nothing is to be done,-Give them a spade, and they work as if it burned their fingers; but set them to dancing, and see when they will tire of flinging.'
Another of Yellowley's griefs is elsewhere laughably told in the disaster of his nine Bee hives.
"Thrive!' replied Triptolemus; 'they thrive like every thing else in this country, and that is the backward way.'
Want of care, I suppose,' said Cleveland.
"The contrary, sir, quite and clean the contrary,' replied the Factor; they died of o'er muckle care, like Lucky Christie's chickens. I asked to see the skeps, and cunning and joyful did the fallow look who was to have taken care of them, Had there been ony body in charge but mysell;' he said, 'ye might have seen the skeps, or whatever you ca' them; but there wad hae been as mony solan-geese as flees in them, if it had nae been for my four quarters; for I watched them so closely, that I saw them a' creeping out at the little holes one sunny morning, and if I had not stopped the leak on the instant with a bit clay, the de'il a bee, or flee, or whatever they are, would have been left in the skeps, as ye ca' them!'-In a word, Sir, he had clagged up the hives, as if the pair things had had the pestilence, and my bees were as dead as if they had been smeaked, -and so ends my hope, generandi gloria mellis, as Virgilius hath it.'"
The conclusion of certain consultations is, that all parties shall go to the fair of Kirkwall, and thither the action is transported, There we find Cleveland resolute to turn from his evil ways, and abandon his wicked associates; but his destiny is shaped otherwise, by slight though uncontroulable events. A squabble with Snaelsfoot, whom he discovers selling his property, causes him to be apprehended; but he is rescued, and borne triumphantly aboard by his lawless
The characters of these bloody
rufians are vigorously touched. They agree with the frightened magistrates of Kirkwall to have their vessel victuclied at Stromness, and immediately to quit the coast. Cleveland is left hostage for the pirates, and Triptoleas is to be their security, but he escapes as they carry him to the boat. To remedy this, they seize a pinnace entering the harbour, which happens to be that in which the worthy Udaller, his daughters, and Halcro, are coming to the Fair. Their situation is most precarious and painful; but Halcro, in Lieutenant Bunce, a friend of Cleveland, recognizes an old strolling acquaintance, and through his means is put on shore with Minna and Brenda, to treat for an exchange between Magnus and the Pirate. This, however, the magistrates deny; and the latter, a prisoner in the ruined cathedral, is represented as musing bitterley on his fate :—
"Here walked Cleveland, musing over the events of a mis-spent life, which it seemed probable might be brought to a violent and shameful close, while he was yet in the prime of youth. • With these dead,' he said, looking on the pavement, will I soon be numbered,--but no holy man will speak a blessing,-no friendly hand register an inscription, no proud descendant sculpture armorial bearings over the grave of the pirate Cleveland. My whitening bones will swing in the gibbet-irons on some wild beach, or lonely cape, that will be esteemed fatal and accursed for my sake. The old mariner, as he passes the sound, will shake his head, and tell of my name and actions as a warning to his younger comrades. But Minna!-Minna!-what will be thy thoughts when the news reaches thee?-Would to God the tidings were drowned in the deepest whirpool betwixt Kirkwall and Burg-Westra, ere they came to her ear!-and O, would to Heaven that we had never met, since we never can meet again.'
"He lifted up his eyes as he spake, and Minna Troil stood before him!" "
She has heroically come to bid him farewell for ever, and to aid his escape. Their interview is a fine one; bat Norna again appears mysteriously, and releases the captive, denouncing woes upon his head if he does not relinquish Minna, and fly without delay never to return again. To favour this arrangement, the sloop is expeditiously supplied with all she
wants, and may sail, if her commander wills it, before the Halcyon frigate can intercept her voyage. But Cleveland resolves to see the adored Minna once more; and his Lieutenant, Bunce, contrives a plot to carry both off, in the conviction that it will make all concerned happy. This design fails, the boat's crew are killed or taken; and among the latter are Cleveland and the Lieutenant. While this takes place on shore, the Pirate sloop is attacked at sea by the Halcyon and captured, after an ineffectual attempt to blow up both ships. The prisoners are all marched into Kirkwall, and Cleveland generally commiserated. Norna and the elder Mertoun meet at the appointed spot; an eclaircissement ensues, and it is learnt that he is the partner of her youthful error; that Cleveland is the fruit of their Norse union, and that Mordaunt,
whom Norna had fancied to be her son, and therefore so busied herself with his destiny, is the son of Mertoun, or rather Vaughan, by a Spanish wife; after the supposed decease of Norna, or rather, of Ulla Troil.
In London the younger Vaughan (Cleveland,) is pardoned on account of his humanity in saving some distinguished persons in the power of the buccaneers,--and going abroad in his country's service dies a glorious death His father retires to a foreign convent, and Norna in a few years dies. Brenda is happily united to Mordaunt; and Minna enjoys a state of comparative happiness in fulfilling the purest duties of benevolence and humanity, and in preparing for her future Heaven, by appearing even upon Earth" but a little lower than the angels."
We have left small space to add our comments. How much the Pirate will be liked, in comparison with his brethren from the same pen, will depend on all those varieties of taste which have preferred Waverley to Rob Roy; Kenilworth to Guy Mannering; Old Mortality to Ivanhoe, and so of all the others. It will readily occur that Norna is a superior cast of Meg Merrilies; Triptolemus a variety of the Dominie Sampson species; Nick Schrumpfer a goblin page; Minna a relative of Flora M'Ivor; Cleveland a sort of Geordie Robertson, and that other resemblances betray the same
kindred origin. But Magnus, and Halcro, and Baby, and Snaelsfoot, and Jack Bunce, are new and vivid creations. The hand of a master is prominent throughout; and in beautiful reflections, noble landscapes, and accurate delineations of character, the Pirate may well be bound up with his admired precursors.
No expressions of our's can add fame to it's celebrated Author, nor convey an adequate idea of the gigantic, versatile, and prolific powers of this matchless Delineator of Nature, and of the passions that inhabit the human breast, as these are elicited or repressed by the various education, habits, circumstances, conditions, and professions of men. He seems to be equally au fait in pourtraying the splendid and chivalrous heroes of the Court of Queen Elizabeth; and in catching "the manners living, as they rise" on the quarter deck, and gunroom of a buccaneer's vessel;-in laying open, with all the graphic perfection of the dramatic art, the tricks and doublings, hypocrisy, fraud, and fanaticism, which blend together, like the prismatic hues, in the original portrait of the jagger, Snaelsfoot;in painting, with unrivalled truth, invention, and originality, the rather improbable, but striking figure, of the piratical comedian Jack Bunce; in presenting to our imagination the actual impersonation of that earthworm, Mrs. Baby Yellowley, and her brother the Agriculturist, and exstudent of St. Andrew's; and in designing, as it were, with a pencil formed from the butterfly's wing, the light, imaginative, lovely form, of Minna Troil. Nor is he less familiarized with the general features of Nature: for, wherever he lays his scene, he makes us specdily acquainted with every bay, headland, rock, ravine, channel, roost, or voe, necessary to the most perfect knowledge of the incidents which he details. Who has not admired the unequalled descriptions of scenery of the most opposite kinds, to be found in Waverley and Guy Mannering? And who, that has followed the footsteps of this Mighty Magician, but must. have recognized the individual features with which his fancy had become acquainted in his admirable pages. This, however, is not all. He does not merely describe his characters,
but he brings them before us, speaking the very language of their passions, their hearts, and their inmost feelings. Whoever has read the Novels and Tales by the Author of Waverley,—and who has not?-must have observed, that, in this particular, he is equalled by Fielding and Smollet alone: while, to the advantage of our more modern author, it must be added, that his range has been infinitely more varied and comprehensive; and we would ask any reader of the scene where the Rovers assemble in the ward-room, to elect a new Captain in the room of Goffe, if such men could speak a more appropriate and characteristic language? This same remark, indeed, applies with almost equal force throughout, and more particularly, to the admirably-sustained characters of the pedlar Snaelsfoot and Mrs. Barbara Yellowley.
Interspersed through these three volumes our friends will also find much truly exquisite poetry,-superior, if we do not mistake, to any specimen of the kind in the former Novels and Tales by the same author. Many of the mottos, too, are, as usual, evidently from the pen of the Author himself, and we regret that he has not yet attempted a regular drama. In this age, when dramatic talent is apparently extinct, and when Lord Byron himself has completely failed in his offerings to the Tragic Muse, the successful achievement of such a work would be the more glorious, as it would put the cope-stone on an edifice of renown, already too splendid to be equalled, and too stable to be overthrown; it would raise the glory of the mighty minstrel "above all Greek, above all Roman fame!" and prove that his high desert was in all respects unrivalled.
The following admirable motto, said to be extracted from an "Old Play," but most assuredly from the pen of the Author himself, is descriptive of Norma of the Fitful Head, and fully bears out both our suggestion and our encomium.
"See yonder woman, whom our swains revere,
And dread in secret, while they take her
When sweetheart shall be kind, or when cross dame shall die, Where lurks the thief who stole the silver tankard,
And how the pestilent murrain may be cured,
This sage adviser's mad, stark mad, my friend;
Yet, in her madness, hath the art and cunning
To wring fools' secrets from their inmost bosoms,
And pay enquirers with the coin they gave her."
Having thought it preferable not to interrupt the current of our narrative by quoting the Poetry as it occurred, we add three of the shorter specimens here, to close our review.
Farewell to Northmaren: by Halcro. "Farewell to Northmaven,
Grey Hillswicke, farewell!
Which Hacon could brave,
Were white in the wave.
Let the mermaiden sing them.
But there's one who will never
To poor mortals were given,
The Song of Harold Harfager.
"The sun is rising dimly red,
Soon we feast on dead and dying,
Many an arm the axe-uprears,
Gather footmen, gather horsemen, To the field ye valiant Norsemen! Halt ye not for food or slumber, View not vantage, count not number; Jolly reapers, forward still, Grow the crop on vale or hill, Thick or scatter'd, stiff or lithe, It shall down before the scythe. Forward with your sickles bright, Reap the harvest of the fight,— Onward footmen, onward horsemen, To the charge ye gallant Norsemen! Fatal chuser of the slaughter, O'er you hovers Odin's daughter; Hear the choice she spreads before ye, Victory and wealth and glory ; Or old Valhalla's roaring hail, Her ever-circling mead and ale, Where for eternity unite
The joys of wassail and of fight. Headlong forward, foot and horsemen, Charge and fight, and die like Norsemen!'"
We appeal to all our readers if every line of this song be not incontrovertible evidence of it's author being Sir Walter Scott ?—and the same of the following: