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The reception of this piece soon extended his re rioters. Ten years from the date of this disapputation beyond Scotland. His works were re. pointment, Ramsay had the satisfaction of seeing printed at Dublin, and became popular in the dramatic entertainments freely enjoyed by his colonies. Pope was known to admire The Gentle fellow-citizens; but in the mean time he was not Shepherd ; and Gay, when he was in Scotland, only left without legal relief for his own loss in sought for explanations of its phrases, that he the speculation (having suffered what the Scotch might communicate them to his friend at law denominated a “ damnum sine injuria''), but Twickenham. Ramsay's shop was a great he was assailed with libels on his moral character, resort of the congenial fabulist while he remained for having endeavoured to introduce the “hell in Edinburgh ; and from its windows, which bred playhouse comedians." overlooked the Exchange, the Scottish poet used He spent some of the last years of his life in a to point out to Gay the most remarkable charac- house of whimsical construction, on the north ters of the place.
side of the Castle-hill of Edinburgh, where the A second volume of his poems appeared in place of his residence is still distinguished by the 1728 ; and in 1730 he published a collection of name of Ramsay-garden. fables. His epistles in the former volume are A scurvy in his gums put a period to his generally indifferent; but there is one addressed life in his seventy-second year.
He died at to the poet Somervile, which contains some easy Edinburgh, and was interred in Grey Friars lines. Professing to write from nature more church-yard. Ramsay was small in stature, with than art, he compares, with some beauty, the rude dark but expressive and pleasant features. He style which he loved and practised, to a neglected seems to have possessed the constitutional philoorchard.
sophy of good-humour. His genius gave him I love the garden wild and wide,
access to the society of those who were most disWhere oaks have plum-trees by their side,
tinguished for rank and talents in his native Where woodbines and the twisting vine
country ; but his intercourse with them was Clip round the pear-tree and the pine; Where mixt jonquils and gowans & grow,
marked by no servility, and never seduced him And roses midst rank clover blow,
from the quiet attention to trade by which he Upon a bank of a clear strand,
ultimately secured a moderate independence. Its wimplings led by nature's hand;
His vanity in speaking of himself is often excesThough docks and brambles, here and there, May sometimes cheat the gard'ner's care,
sive, but it is always gay and good-natured. On Yet this to me's a Paradise,
one occasion he modestly takes precedence of Compared to prime cut plots and nice,
Peter the Great, in estimating their comparative Where nature has to art resign'd,
importance with the public.—“ But hadb, proud And all looks stiff, mean, and confined.
Czar (he says) I wad na niffere fame." Much of original poets he says, in one expressive of his poetry breathes the subdued aspirations of couplet :
Jacobitism. He was one of those Scotsmen who The native bards first plunged the deep,
for a long time would not extend their patriotisin Before the artful dared to leap.
to the empire in which their country was merged, About the age of forty-five he ceased to write and who hated the cause of the Whigs in Scotfor the public. The most remarkable circum- land, from remembering its ancient connexion stance of his life was an attempt which he made with the leaven of fanaticism. The Tory cause to establish a theatre in Edinburgh. Our poet had also found its way to their enthusiasm by had been always fond of the drama, and had being associated with the pathos and romance of occasionally supplied prologues to the players the lost independence of their country. The who visited the northern capital. But though the business of Darien was still “alta mente reposage of fanaticism was wearing away, it had not yet tum.” Fletcher's eloquence on the subject of suffered the drama to have a settled place of the Union was not forgotten, nor that of Belhaven, exhibition in Scotland ; and when Ramsay had, who had apostrophised the Genius of Caledonia with great expense, in the year 1736, fitted up a in the last meeting of her senate, and who died theatre in Carubber's Close, the act for licensing of grief at the supposed degradation of his country. the stage, which was passed in the following year, Visionary as the idea of Scotland's independence gave the magistrates of Edinburgh a power of as a kingdom might be, we must most of all excuse shutting it up, which they exerted with gloomy it in a poet whose fancy was expressed, and whose severity. Such was the popular hatred of play- reputation was bound up, in a dialect from which houses in Scotland at this period, that, some time the Union took away the last chance of perpetuity. afterwards, the mob of Glasgow demolished the Our poet's miscellaneous pieces, though some first playhouse that was erected in their city ; of them are very ingenious*, are upon the whole and though the work of destruction was accomplished in daylight by many hundreds, it was
e Exchange. reckoned so godly, that no reward could bribe
* Particularly the tale of the Monk and the Millar's
Wife. This story is, unhappily, unfit for a popular colany witness to appear or inform against the
lection like the present, but it is well told. a Daisies.
from an old poem attributed to Dunbar.
It is borrowed
of a much coarser grain than his pastoral drama. The admirers of the Gentle Shepherd must perhaps be contented to share some suspicion of national partiality, while they do justice to their own feeling of its merit. Yet as this drama is a picture of rustic Scotland, it would perhaps be saying little for its fidelity, if it yielded no more agreeableness to the breast of a native than he could expound to a stranger by the strict letter of criticism. We should think the painter had finished the likeness of a mother very indiffer: ently, if it did not bring home to her children traits of indefinable expression which had escaped every eye but that of familiar affection. Ramsay had not the force of Burns; but, neither, in just proportion to his merits, is he likely to be felt by an English reader. The fire of Burns's wit and passion glows through an obscure dialect by its confinement to short and concentrated bursts. The interest which Ramsay excites is spread over a long poem, delineating manners more than passions; and the mind must be at home both in the language and manners, to appreciate the skill and comic archness with which he has heightened the display of rustic character without giving it vulgarity, and refined the view of peasant life by situations of sweetness and tenderness, without departing in the least degree from its simplicity. The Gentle Shepherd stands quite apart from the
general pastoral poetry of modern Europe. It has no satyrs, nor featureless simpletons, nor drowsy and still landscapes of nature, but distinct characters and amusing incidents. The principal shepherd never speaks out of consistency with the habits of a peasant; but he moves in that sphere with such a manly spirit, with so much cheerful sensibility to its humble joys, with maxims of life so rational and independent, and with an ascendancy over his fellow swains so well maintained by his force of character, that if we could suppose the pacific scenes of the drama to be suddenly changed into situations of trouble and danger, we should, in exact consistency with our former idea of him, expect him to become the leader of the peasants, and the Tell of his native hamlet. Nor is the character of his mistress less beautifully conceived. She is represented, like himself, as elevated, by a fortunate discovery, from obscure to opulent life, yet as equally capable of being the ornament of either. A Richardson or a D'Arblay, had they continued her history, might have heightened the portrait, but they would not have altered its outline. Like the poetry of Tasso and Ariosto, that of the Gentle Shepherd is engraven on the memory of its native country. Its verses have passed into proverbs; and it continues to be the delight and solace of the peasantry whom it describes.
FROM “ THE GENTLE SHEPHERD.”
ACT I. SCENE II,
PROLOGUE. A flowrie howmd between twa verdant braes, Where lasses use to wish and spread their claiths e, A trotting burnie wimpling throw the ground, Its channel peebles shining smooth and round: Ilere view twa barefoot beauties clean and clear ; First please your eye, then gratify your ear; While Jenny what she wishes discommends, And Meg with better sense true love defends.
PEGGY and JENNY. Jenny. Come, Meg, let's fa'to wark upon this This shining day will bleach our linen clean; (green, The water 's clear, the liftf unclouded blue, Will make them like a lily wet with dew.
Peggy. Gaefarrer up the burn to Habbie's How,
Jenny. Daft lassie, when we're naked, what'll ye
say, Giff our twa herds come brattling down the brae, And see us sae !-that jeering fellow, Pate, Wad taunting say, “Haith, lasses, ye're no blateli."
Peggy. We're far frae ony road, and out of sight; The lads they're feeding far beyont the hight; But tell me now, dear Jenny, we're our lane, What gars ye plague your wooer with disdain? The neighbours a' tent this as well as I ; That Roger lo'es ye, yet ye care na by. What ails ye at him? Troth, between us twa, He's wordy you the best day e'er ye saw.
Jenny. I dinna like him, Peggy, there's an end; A herd mair sheepish yet I never kend. He kames his hair, indeed, and gaes right snug, With ribbon-knots at his blue bonnet lug; Whilk pensyliei he wears a thought a-jee,' And spreads his garters diced beneath his knee. He falds his owrelayk down his breast with care, And few gangs trigger to the kirk or fair ; For a' that, he can neither sing nor say, [day.” Except, “How d’ye?” — or, “ There's a bonny
Peggy. Ye dash the lad with constant slighting Hatred for love is unco sair to bide : (pride,
h Modest.-i Sprucely.-) To one side.- Cravat.
But ye'll repent ye, if his love grow cauld, In a' he says or does there's sic a gate,
Jenny. Hey, “bonny lass of Branksome !" or 't And syne the fool thing is obliged to fast, Your witty Pate will put you in a sang. [be lang, Or scart anither's leavings at the last.
O'tis a pleasant thing to be a bride !
Jenny. I never thought a single life a crime. Yelping for this or that with fasheous" din:
Peggy. Nor I: but love in whispers lets us ken To make them brats then ye maun toil and spin. That men were made for us, and we for men. Ae wean fa's sick, and scads itself wi' brue',
Jenny. If Roger is my jo, he kens himsell, Ane breaks his shin, anither tines his shoe : (hell, For sic a tale I never heard him tell.
The “Deil gaes o'er John Wabster":" hame grows He glowrs, and sighs, and I can guess the cause : When Pate misca’s ye waur than tongue can tell. But wha's obliged to spell his hums and haws ? Peggy. Yes, it's a heartsome thing to be a wife, Whene'er he likes to tell his mind mair plain, When round the ingle-edge young sprouts are rife. I’se tell him frankly ne'er to do't again.
Gif I'm sae happy, I shall have delight They're fools that slav'ry like, and may be free; To hear their little plaints, and keep them right. The chiels may a' knit up themselves for me. Wow, Jenny ! can there greater pleasure be,
Peggy. Be doing your ways : for me, I have a Than see sic wee tots toolying at your knee ; To be as yielding as my Patie's kind. [mind When a' they ettle at, their greatest wish, Jenny. Heh ! lass, how can ye lo'e that rattle Is to be made of, and obtain a kiss ? skull ?
Can there be toil in tenting day and night A very deil, that ay maun have his will !
The like of them, when love makes care delight! We soon will hear what a poor feightan life
Jenny. But poortith, Peggy, is the warst of a', You twa will lead, sae soon's ye're man and wife. Gif o'er your heads ill chance should begg'ry draw:
Peggy. I'll rin the risk; nor have I ony fear, There little love or canty cheer can come But rather think ilk langsome day a year, Frae duddy doublets, and a pantry toom'. "Till I with pleasure mount my bridal-bed, Your nowt may die ; the speaty may bear away Where on my Patie's breast I'll lay my head. Frae aff the howms your dainty rucks of hay ; There he may kiss as lang as kissing 's good, The thick-blawn wreaths of snaw, or blashy thows, And what we do there's nane dare call it rude. May smoor your wethers, and may rot your ewes; He's get his will ; why no? 'tis good my part A dyvour? buys your butter, woo', and cheese, To give him that, and he'll give me bis heart. But or the day of payment breaks and fees ;
Jenny. He may indeed for ten or fifteen days With gloomin' brow the laird seeks in his rent, Mak meikle o'ye, with an unco fraise,
'Tis no to gie, your merchant's to the bent ; And daut ye baith afore fowk and your lane : His honour maunna want, he poinds your gear ; But soon as your newfangleness is gane,
Syne driven frae house and hald, where will ye He'll look upon you as his tether-stake,
Dear Meg, be wise, and lead a single life; (steer!And think he's tint his freedom for your sake. Troth, it's nae mows to be a married wife. Instead then of lang days of sweet delyte,
Peggy. May sic ill luck befa' that silly she, Ae day be dumb, and a' the neist he'll flyte : Wha has sic fears, for that was never me. And may be in his barlichoods", ne'er stick Let fowk bode weel, and strive to do their best ; To lend his loving wife a loundering lick.
Nae mair's required—let heaven makeout the rest. Peggy. Sic coarse-spun thoughts as that want I've heard my honest unele aften say, pith to move
That lads should a' for wives that’s vertuous pray ; My settled mind ; I'm o'er far gane in love. For the maist thrifty man could never get Patie to me is dearer than my breath,
A well-stored room, unless his wife wad let : But want of him I dread nae other skaith. Wherefore nocht shall be wanting on my part There's nane of a' the herds that tread the green To gather wealth to raise my shepherd's heart. Has sic a smile, or sic twa glancing een.
Whate'er he wins I'll guide with canny care. And then he speaks with sic a taking art,
And win the vogue at market, tron, or fair, His words they thirle like music through my heart. For healsome, clean, cheap, and sufficient ware. How blythly can he sport, and gently rave, A flock of lambs, cheese, butter, and some woo', And jest at little fears that fright the lave. Shall first be sald to pay the laird his due ; Ilk day that he's alane upon the hill,
Syne a' behind 's our ain.— Thus without fear, He reads feil' books that teach him meikle skill; With love and rowth we thro' the warld will steer; He is—but what need I say that or this,
And when my Pate in bairns and gear grows rife, I'd spend a month to tell you what he is ! He'll bless the day he gat me for his wife.
1 Pettish._m Spoilt child.— Pettishly refuses its food. u Troublesome-Scalds itself with broth.-WA Scotch • Silly.-P Fret. Stares. — * Cross-moods.—5 llarm. proverb when all goes wrong.- Empty.- Land-flood.Many.
? Bankrupt. It is no slight calamity_b Plenty.
Jenny. I've done, -1 yield, dear lasssie; I maun
yield, Your better sense has fairly won the field. With the assistance of a little fae Lies dern'd within my breast this mony a day. Peggy. Alake, poor pris’ner!-Jenny, that's no
fair, That ye'll no let the wee thing take the air: Haste, let him out ; we'll tent as well 's we can, Gif he be Bauldy's, or poor Roger's man.
Jenny. Anither time's as good ; for see the sun Is right far up, and we're not yet begun To freath the graith : if canker's Madge, our aunt, Come up the burn, she'll gie us a wicked rant; But when we've done, I'll tell you a' my mind; For this seems true-nae lass can be unkind.
Jenny. But what if some young giglet on the
green, With dimpled cheeks, and twa bewitching een, Should gar your Patie think his half-worn Meg, And her kend kisses, bardly worth a feg? Peggy. Nae mair of that :-dear Jenny, to be
free, There's some men constanter in love than we : Nor is the ferly great, when nature kind Has blest them with solidity of mind ; They'll reason caulmly, and with kindness smile, When our short passions wad our peace beguile: Sae, whensoe'er they slight their maiksd at hame, 'Tis ten to ane their wives are maist to blame. Then I'll employ with pleasure a' my art To keep him cheerfu', and secure his heart. At ev’n, when he comes weary frae the hill, I'll have a' things made ready to his will : In winter, when he toils thro' wind and rain, A bleezing ingle, and a clean hearth-stane : And soon as he flings by his plaid and staff, The seething-pot 's be ready to take aff ; Clean hag-abago I'll spread upon his board, And serve him with the best we can afford : Good-humour and white bigonets shall be Guards to my face, to keep his love for me. Jenny. A dish of married love right soon grows
cauld, And dozins & down to pane, as fowk grow auld. Peggy. But we'll grow auld together, and ne'er
find The loss of youth, when love grows on the mind. Bairns and their bairns make sure a firmer tie, Than aught in love the like of us can spy. See yon twa elms that grow up side by side, Suppose them some years syne bridegroom and
bride ; Nearer and nearer ilka year they've prest, Till wide their spreading branches are increased, And in their mixture now are fully blest : This shields the other frae the eastlin blast ; That in return defends it frae the wast. Sic as stand single, (a state sae liked by you,) Beneath ilk storm frae every airth maun bow.
c Mates, _d Huckaback. Le Linen caps or coifsI Dwindles.
FAREWELL to Lochaber, farewell to my Jean, Where heartsome with thee I have mony a day To Lochaber no more, to Lochaber no more,
e, [been: We'll maybe return to Lochaber no more. These tears that I shed they are a' for my dear, And not for the dangers attending on weir ; Though borne on rough seas to a far bloody shore, Maybe to return to Lochaber no more ! Though hurricanes rise, and rise every wind, No tempest can equal the storm in my mind : Though loudest of thunders on louder waves roar, That's naething like leaving my love on the shore. To leave thee behind me my heart is sair pain’d, But by ease that's inglorious no fame can be gain'd: And beauty and love's the reward of the brave; And I maun deserve it before I can crave.
Then glory, my Jeany, maun plead my excuse,
SIR CHARLES HANBURY WILLIAMS.
(Born, 1709. Died, 1750.)
SIR CHARLES HANBURY Williams was the son stalled a knight of the Bath, and was afterwards of John Hanbury, Esq., a South Sea Director. minister at the courts of Berlin and Peters. He sat in several parliaments, was, in 1744, in- | burgh.
(* Since this was written, an edition of Sir Charles H. Williams's works, in 3 vols 8vo, has been printed, of which a properly bitter critique appeared in the 55th number of
the Quarterly Review,-it is said from the pen of Mr. Croker.)
TO A GREAT NUMBER OF GREAT MEN, NEWLY MADE.
SEE, a new progeny descends
O Muse ! attend my call !
Direct it to them all.
And thou no more go tatter'd :
Who never yet were flatter'd.
Yet careless how you use him ;
And laugh if you abuse him.
Stiff in his popular pride :
Now laughing, now in sorrow;
And roars for power to-morrow.
Each party tried to 'ave won him ;
That now both parties shun him.
Sits first, but does not lead :
And the tail moves the head.
Back to that station go ;
And have not got it now.
Now strike my ravish'd eye :
Rusty with lying by.
Dear Bat, I'm glad you've got a place,
You'll give opposing o'er : 'Tis comfortable to be in, And think what a damn'd while you've been,
Like Peter, at the door.
For since you are in power,
Of which you'd none before,
Judiciously from plough :
Th’ Exchequer gave to you.
Did they not turn your head ?
In Lady Loverule's bed.
Grown taller by some inches ;
The black funereal Finches.
Into the Treasury come :
Thou Bourgeois Gentilhomme.
Of Walpole and his tools ?
A’nt only knaves, but fools.
To bleeding Britain bring 'em : Unite all hearts, appease each storm ; 'Tis yours such actions to perform,
My pride shall be to sing 'em*. [* This is sorry stuff, but Williams did not always write this way. Witness his famous quatrain on Pulteney :
When you touch on his Lordship, &c.
To enrol the fair deeds of his youth !
Leave a blank for his honour and truth!)