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The Doctor pretended to laugh at the absurdity of John's narrative, but it was with a ghastly and doubtful expression of countenance, as though he thought the story far too ridiculous for any clodpole to have contrived out of his own head; and forthwith he dismissed the two dealers in the marvellous, with very little ceremony, the one protesting that the thing beat the world, and the other that they had both reason to be thankfu' that they were as they were.

The next morning the villagers, small and great, were assembled at an early hour to witness the lifting of the body of their late laird, and headed by the established and dissenting clergymen, and two surgeons, they proceeded to the tomb, and soon extracted the splendid coffin, which they opened with all due caution and ceremony. But instead of the murdered body of their late benefactor, which they expected in good earnest to find, there was nothing in the coffin but a layer of gravel, of about the weight of a corpulent man!

to be borne! so the mob proceeded in a body up to Wineholm-Place, to take out their poor deluded lady, and burn the Doctor and his basely acquired habitation to ashes. It was not till the multitude had surrounded the house that the ministers and two or three other gentlemen could stay them, which they only did by assuring the mob that they would bring out the Doctor before their eyes, and deliver him up to justice. This pacified the throng; but on inquiry at the hall, it was found that the Doctor had gone off early that morning, so that nothing further could be done for the present. But the coffin, filled with gravel, was laid up in the aisle and kept open for inspection.

The clamour against the new laird then rose all at once into a tumult that it was impossible to check, every one declaring aloud that he had not only murdered their benefactor, but, for fear of the discovery, had raised the body, and given, or rather sold it, to the dissectors. The thing was not

Nothing could now exceed the consternation of the simple villagers of Wineholm at these dark and mysterious events. Business, labour, and employment of every sort, were at a stand, and the people hurried about to one another's houses, and mingled together in one heterogeneous mass of theoretical speculation. The smith put his hand to the bellows, but forgot to blow till the fire went out; the weaver leaned on his beam, and listened to the legends of the ghastly tailor. The team stood in the mid furrow, and the thresher agaping over his flail; and even the Dominie was heard to declare that the geometrical series of events was increasing by no common measure, and therefore ought to be calculated rather arithmetically than by logarithms; and John Broadcast saw more and more reason for being thankful that he was as he was, and neither a stock nor a stone, nor a brute beast.

Everything that happened was more extraordinary than the last; and the most puzzling of all was the circumstance of the late laird's mare, saddle, bridle and all, being off before day the next morning; so that Dr Davington was obliged to have recourse to his own, on which he was seen posting away on the road towards Edinburgh. It was thus but too obvious that the ghost of the late laird had ridden off on his favourite mare, the Lord only knew whither! for as to that point none of the sages of Wineholm could divine. But their souls grew chill as an iceberg, and their very frames rigid at the thoughts of a spirit riding away on a brute beast to the place appointed for wicked men. And had not Johu

Broadcast reason to be thankful that he was as he was?

However the outcry of the community became so outrageous, of murder, and foul play in so many ways, that the officers of justice were compelled to take note of it; and accordingly the Sheriff substitute, the Sheriff-clerk, the Fiscal, and two assistants, came in two chaises to Wineholm to take a precognition, and there a court was held which lasted the whole day, at which, Mrs Davington, the late laird's only daughter, all the servants, and a great number of the villagers, were examined on oath. It appeared from the evidence that Dr Davington had come to the village and set up as a surgeon-that he had used every endeavour to be employed in the laird's family in vain, as the latter detested him. That he, however, found means of seducing his only daughter to elope with him, which put the laird quite beside himself, and from thenceforward he became drowned in dissipation. That such, however, was his affection for his daughter, that he caused her to live with him, but would never suffer the Doctor to enter his door-that it was nevertheless quite customary for the Doctor to be sent for to his lady's chamber, particularly when her father was in his cups; and that on a certain night, when the laird had had company, and was so overcome that he could not rise from his chair, he had died suddenly of apoplexy; and that no other skill was sent for, or near him, but this his detested son-in-law, whom he had by will disinherited, though the legal term for rendering that will competent had not expired. The body was coffined the second day after death, and locked up in a low room in one of the wings of the building; and nothing farther could be elicited. The Doctor was missing, and it was whispered that he had absconded; indeed it was evident, and the Sheriff acknowledged, that from the evidence taken collectively, the matter had a very suspicious aspect, although there was no direct proof against the Doctor. It was proved that he had attempted to bleed the patient, but had not succeeded, and that at that time the laird was black in the face.

When it began to wear nigh night, and nothing farther could be learned, the Sheriff-clerk, a quiet considerate gentleman, asked why they had not

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lence, and inflamed state of the body by apoplexy, there will be great dan ger of this. Very well, sir,' says I what shall I bring?'


"You had better only screw down the lids lightly at present, then,' said he, and if you could bring a bucketfull of quicklime, a little while hence, and pour it over the body, especially over the face, it is a very good thing, an excellent thing for preventing any deleterious effluvia from escaping.'

the Sheriff, interrupting him. "These words can be nothing but the ravings of a disturbed and heated imagination. I entreat you to recollect, that you have appealed to the great Judge of heaven and earth for the truth of what you assert here, and to answer accordingly."

"I know what I am saying, my Lord Sheriff," said Sanderson; "and am telling naething but the plain truth, as nearly as my state of mind at the time permits me to recollect. The appalling figure approached still nearer and nearer to me, breathing threatenings if I would not rise and fly to its assistance, and swearing like a sergeant of dragoons at both the Doctor and myself. At length it came so close on me, that I had no other shift but to hold up both feet and hands to shield me, as I had seen herons do when knocked down by a goshawk, and I cried out; but even my voice failed me, so that I only cried like one through his sleep.

"What the devil are you lying gaping and braying at there?" said he, seizing me by the wrists, and dragging me after him. Do you not see the plight I am in, and why won't you fly to succour me?'

"I now felt to my great relief, that this terrific apparition was a being of flesh, bones, and blood, like myself; that, in short, it was indeed my kind old friend the laird popped out of his open coffin, and come over to pay me an evening visit, but certainly in such a guise as earthly visit was never paid. I soon gathered up my scattered senses, took my kind old friend into my room, bathed him all over, and washed him well in lukewarm water; then put him into a warm bed, gave him a glass or two of warm punch, and he came round amazingly. He caused me to survey his neck a hundred times I am sure; and I had no doubt that he had been strangled, for there was a purple ring round it, which in some places was black, and a little swollen; his voice creaked like a door-hinge, and his features were still distorted. He swore terribly at both the Doctor and myself; but nothing put him half so mad as the idea of the quicklime being poured over him, and particularly over his face. I am mistaken if that experiment does not serve him for a theme of execration as long as he lives."

"Very well, sir,' says I; and so I followed his directions. I procured the lime; and as I was to come privately in the evening to deposit it in the coffin, in company with the Doctor alone, I was putting off the time in my workshop, polishing some trifle, and thinking to myself that I could not find in my heart to choke up my old friend with quicklime, even after he was dead, when, to my unspeakable horror, who should enter my workshop but the identical laird himself, dressed in his dead-clothes in the very same manner in which I had seen him laid in the coffin, but apparently all streaming in blood to the feet. I fell back over against a cart-wheel, and was going to call out, but could not; and as he stood straight in the door, there was no means of escape. At length the apparition spoke to me in a hoarse trembling voice, enough to have frightened a whole conclave of bishops out of their senses; and it says to me, Jamie Sanderson! O, Jamie Sanderson! I have been forced to appear to you in a d-d frightful guise. These were the very first words it spoke; and they were far frae being a lie, but I hafflins thought to mysell, that a being in such circumstances might have spoke with a little more caution and decency. I could make no answer, for my tongue refused all attempts at articulation, and my lips would not come together; and all that I could do, was to lie back against my new cart-wheel, and hold up my hands as a kind of defence. The ghastly and blood-stained apparition, advancing a step or two, held up both its hands flying with dead ruffles, and cried to me in a still more frightful voice,' O, my faithful old friend! I have been murdered! I am a murdered man, Jamie Sanderson! and if you do not assist me in bringing the wretch to a due retribution, you will be d-d to hell, sir.'


"This is sheer raving, James," said

"So he is then alive, you say?" asked the Fiscal.

"O yes, sir! alive and tolerably well, considering. We two have had several bottles together in my quiet room; for I have still kept him concealed, to see what the Doctor would do next. He is in terror for him somehow, until sixty days be over from some date that he talks of, and seems assured that that dog will have his life by hook or crook, unless he can bring him to the gallows betimes, and he is absent on that business to-day. One night lately, when fully half-seas over, he set off to the schoolhouse, and frightened the Dominie; and last night he went up to the stable, and gave old Broadcast a hearing for not keeping his mare well enough.

"It appeared that some shaking motion in the coffining of him had brought him to himself, after bleeding abundantly both at mouth and nose; that he was on his feet ere ever he knew how he had been disposed of, and was quite shocked at seeing the open coffin on the bed, and himself dressed in his grave-clothes, and all in one bath of blood. He flew to the door, but it was locked outside; he rap ped furiously for something to drink; but the room was far removed from any inhabited part of the house, and none regarded. So he had nothing for it but to open the window, and come through the garden and the back loaning to my workshop. And as I had got orders to bring a bucket-full of quicklime, I went over in the forenight with a bucket-full of heavy gravel, as much as I could carry, and a little white lime sprinkled on the top of it; and being let in by the Doctor,


I deposited that in the coffin, screwed down the lid, and left it, and the funeral followed in due course, the whole of which the laird viewed from my window, and gave the Doctor a hearty day's cursing for daring to support his head and lay it in the grave. And this, gentlemen, is the substance of what I know concerning this enormous deed, which is I think quite sufficient. The laird bound me to secrecy until such time as he could bring matters to a proper bearing for securing of the Doctor; but as you have forced it from me, you must stand my surety, and answer the charges against me.'

The laird arrived that night with proper authority, and a number of officers, to have the Doctor, his sonin-law, taken into custody; but the bird had flown; and from that day forth he was never seen, so as to be recognised in Scotland. The laird lived many years after that; and though the thoughts of the quicklime made him drink a great deal, yet from that time he never suffered himself to get quite drunk, lest some one might have taken it into his head to hang him, and he not know anything about it. The Dominie acknowledged that it was as impracticable to calculate what might happen in human affairs as to square the circle, which could only be effected by knowing the ratio of the circumference to the radius. For shoeing horses, vending news, and awarding proper punishments, the smith to this day just beats the world. And old John Broadcast is as thankful to Heaven as ever that things are as they are. Mount-Benger, May 15.


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THE progress of our shooting excursion having brought us into contact with a greater number of trees than were supposed to adorn this desolate spot of earth, an early hour on the morning of the 19th saw several working parties sally forth, bill-hook in hand, to fell them. The expedition was not undertaken in vain. In less than a couple of hours the whole of the south side of the island was rendered as bare and bleak as the side on which we had landed, whilst the bivouac presented the appearance of a timber-merchant's yard, so numerous were the trees, bushes, and shrubs which were dragged into it. It is probably needless to add, that of the fuel thus procured, the greatest possible care was taken. Like the food and liquor, it was put under the charge of constituted authorities; and logs and branches were regularly served out to every mess, proportionate in quantity to the numbers of the men who composed it.

I know not whether the Commissary General considered himself indebted to our spirit of adventure for this very valuable accession to the resources of the army, but he either gave, or appeared to give, to my friend and myself, a larger portion of fire-wood, than, strictly speaking, ought to have come to our share. Among the pieces issued out, there were, I recollect, some six or eight long pine stakes, not unlike the poles with which the Kentish farmers support their hops, and the Spanish vine-dressers their grapes. In the true spirit of veterans, we determined not to throw these away by burning them. On the contrary, we set our servants to work, drove the stakes into the ground, in bee-hive fashion, with the upper extremity inclining towards one another: and filling up the interstices with reeds brought from the swamp, we contrived to erect a hut, capable of affording shelter not only from the cold winds which occasionally blew, but from the rain. Of this we prepared to take possession towards sunset; but Dr Baxter, the chief medical officer, happening to be an acquaintance of ours, very

kindly offered us a corner in his hospital tent, and the offer was a great deal too valuable to be rejected. We resigned our own habitation to certain of our less fortunate comrades, and gladly followed our host.

Let me give here some description of the domicile into which we were introduced. It was a large marquee, constructed of spars, oars, and sails of boats. The interior might measure about thirty or forty feet in length; in breadth perhaps half that extent; and in height something less than twelve feet. Being composed of double folds of canvass, it was extremely warm, and perfectly proof against the weather. Its furniture consisted of casks, pack-saddles, sacks filled with stores of different kinds, canteens, linen-chests, and cases of surgical instruments. There was no table, nor any boards which might be substituted for a table; but a quantity of dry reeds overspread the ground, and afforded a very comfortable sofa for its inhabitants. As yet there were neither sick nor wounded to occupy it. On the contrary, as night closed in, numbers of hale and healthy persons, all of them claiming acquaintance with the Doctor, presented themselves at the door, and our hospitable friend made no scruple about receiving them all. Lamps being lighted, a cask of excellent brandy was broached, and with the aid of pipes and cigars, and an ample flow of good-humour, we passed several hours after a fashion which reminded us precisely of the many agreeable evenings which we had spent in winter-quarters upon the Douro and the Nivelle.

Such was our condition from the evening of the 16th to the morning of the 21st of December. On the 20th, indeed, the whole army was reviewed, and a new disposition of the troops so far effected, that, instead of three, it was divided into two brigades, and what was termed the permanent advance. On the 21st, there came in to the camp four or five American offcers, who had deserted from General Jackson's army, and proposed to follow our fortunes, whilst a few war

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