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mayest beat the case of Jonsonhimself thou canst not reach;" on the contrary, he felt too clearly that himself was reached, and as all his attempts to remedy the evil but made it worse, the exasperation of his little heart was extreme. On one occasion, when the fortune of battle had again declared against him, and Cruthers was thrashing his outward man with more than usual vigor, poor Jonson started from his grasp all covered with bruises, and clenching his fist in the face of his enemy, he swore, with the tears streaming from his eyes, and in a voice half-choked by sobs, that before the sun went down Cruthers should rue this. So threat ening he went away.

It was morning when this occurred, and the comments on it did not cease till the arrival of the redoubted Mr. Scroggs, the gaunt and sallow-visaged Dominie, in whose presence all jarring passions died into a timid calm. I know not what feelings Cruthers had while the hours rolled on, or whether he had any; but apparently they were forgotten, when, at mid-day, Jonson's absence had not been inquired into, and the hot cabin vomited forth its exulting population to frolic their gamesome hour beneath the clear summer sky. Of the boys, some arranged themselves for pitchand-toss, some preferred marbles, others shinty; the girls produced their skipping-ropes, or set to pile their bits of crockery into a "dresser; " in short the whole " green was swarming with a noisy throng of little men and little women, all bustling because each corner of the earth was yet full of motives to allure them; all happy because they had not yet been smitten with the curse of passions or the malady of thought. The grim carrier, as he drove his groaning wain past them, and trailed his own weary limbs over the burnt highway along with it, wondered why the deuce they did not go to sleep when they were allowed time. The laird him

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self, as he whirled by in a cloud of dust, with his steeds, his beef-eaters, and his paraphernalia, looked out from his yellow chariot upon them, then within upon his own sick and sated soul, and would have cursed the merry brats, had he not consoled himself by recollecting that, in a few years, want, and hardship, and folly, would make them all as wretched as plenty, and pleasure, and folly, had made him. In fact, it was a scene which Mr. Wordsworth would have gone some miles to see; would have whined over for a considerable time; and most likely would have written a sonnet or two upon.

But nothing earthly is destined to continue the flight of a given number of minutes would have put an end to all this revelry at any rate; an unexpected incident put an end to it more effectually and sooner.

The game was at the hottest ; chuck-farthing waxed more interesting every moment, rope-skipping was become a rage, shinties were flying in fragments, shins were being broken, all was tumult, happiness, and hurly-burly, when all at once the vanquished Jonson appeared upon the Green, with a fierce though sedate look upon his countenance, and what was worse-a large horse pistol in his hand! All paused at sight of him; the younger boys and all the girls uttered a short shrill shriek, and Cruthers grew as pale as milk. What might have been the issue is uncertain, for the sudden silence and the short shriek had in them something strange enough to alarm the vigilance of Mr. Scroggs

busy at the time within doors, expounding to the Ecclefechan exciseman some more abstruse departments of the mystery of guaging. Throwing down his text-book, that invaluable compend, The Young Man's Best Companion, he forthwith sallied from his noontide privacy, and solemnly inquired what was the matter. The matter was investigated, the pistol given up, and after infinite higgling the truth flashed out as clear as day. The Dominie's

jaw sank a considerable fraction of an ell; his color went and came; he said, with a hollow tone, "The Lord be near us!" and sat down upon a stone by the wall-side, clasping his temples with both his hands, and then stooping till he grasped the whole firmly between his knees, to try if he could possibly determine what was to be done in this strange business. He spoke not for the space of three minutes and a half; the whole meeting was silent except for whispers; the rivals did not even whisper.

By degrees, however, when the first whirl of terror and confusion had a little subsided, the dim outlines of the correct decision began to dawn upon the bewildered soul of Mr. Scroggs. He saw that one of the boys must leave him; the only question now was which. He knew that Cruthers's father was a staunch yeoman, Laird of Brecon-hill, which he ploughed indeed with his own hands-but in a way that made him well to pass in money matters, that enabled him on Sundays to ride forth upon a stout sleek nag, to pay his way our all occasions, and to fear no man. He knew at the same time that Jonson's father was likewise a Laird, and one that disdain ed to plough; but also that though his rank was higher, his purse was longer in the neck; that, in short, Knockhill was but a spendthrift; that he loved to hunt and gamble; and that his annual consumpt of whisky was very great. Mr. Scroggs was a gentleman that knew the world; he had learned to calculate the power of men and their various influences upon himself and the public; he felt the full force of that beautiful proposition in arithmetic, that one and one make two; he at length made up his mind. "You, Jonson," said he, rising gradually, "you have broken the peace of the school; you have been a quarrelsome fellow, and when Cruthers got the better of you, in place of yielding or complaining to me, you have gone home privily

and procured fire-arms, with intent, as I conceive, to murder, or at least mortally affright, a fellow Christian, an honest man's child; which, by the law of Moses, as you find in the Assembly's Shorter Catechism, and also by various acts of Parliament, is a very heinous crime; you likewise owe me two quarters of schoolwages, which I do not expect you will ever pay; you cannot be here any longer. Go your ways, sirrah, and may all that's ill among us go with you

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Apparently this most frank statement excited no very definite idea in Jonson's mind; at least he stood motionless on hearing it, his eyes fixed and tearless, his teeth clenched, his nostrils dilated, all his frame displaying symptoms of some inward agony by which his little mind was torn, but indicating no settled purpose of acting either this way or that. Most persons would have pitied him; but Mr. Scroggs was free from that infirmity: he had felt no pity during many years for any but himself. Cruthers was younger and more generous : touched to the quick at his adversary's forlorn situation, he stepped forward, and bravely signified that himself was equally to blame, promising, moreover, that if the past could be forgiven, he would so live with Jonson as to give no cause for censure in the future. "Let us both stay," he said, "and we will never quarrel more." Tears burst from Jonson's eyes at this unexpected proposal; the Dominie himself, surprised and pleased, inquired if he was willing to stand by it; for answer he stretched out his hand and grasped that of Cruthers in silence. "Well! blessed are the peacemakers," observed Mr. Scroggs, "blessed indeed-see that it be sosee that, &c. &c. Boys," continued he, "this is a braw business certainly; these two callants (gallants) have done very manfully-hem!— you shall have this afternoon in holiday to." A universal squeal returned him loud and shrill' ac

claim; the sun-burnt urchins capered, pranced, and shouted; in their souls they blessed the two rivals, Cdanced round them for a few minutes, then darted off by a hundred different paths; while the Dominie, with his raw-boned pupil, Mr. Candlewick, the gauger, returned to their studies with fresh alacrity.

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Not so Cruthers and Jonson. They were left together, glad as any other pair, but with a more serious gladness. They were not in haste to go home, having much to tell each other. Two grown-up persons would E have felt very different in their place; would have hemm'd and haw'd, and said a great many insipidities, attempting, perhaps honestly, to break the ice of ceremony, but in vain sincerely desirous to be reconciled, yet obliged to part chagrined and baffled, and praying mutually that they might never meet again. The boys managed better. In a moment they got over head and ears in each other's confidence; proposed an afternoon's nesting together; strolled over the green fields and copses, recapitulating all the while their former feuds and conflicts, each taking the whole blame upon himselfcommunicating, too, their little hopes and projects, admiring each other heartily, and feeling the pleasure of talking increase every moment. Wearied, at length, by wandering in many a shady dingle, many a sunny holm, they sat down upon a bright green hillock, in the midst of what is now called the Duke's Meadow, and agreed that it would soon be time to part.

It was a lovely evening, as I have been told, and the place itself is not without some charms. Around them Jay an undulating tract of green country, sprinkled with trees and white cottages, hanging on the sunny sides of the declivities. Cattle lowing afar off in the closes; ploughmen driving home their wearied teams; and columns of blue peat-smoke, rising from every chimney within sight, gave notice that the goodwives were cooking their husbands'

frugal supper. In front, the Annan rolled to the eastward, with a full and clear current, a shrill, quiet, rushing tone, through woods of beech and sycamore, all glancing and twinkling in the evening sheen. On the left rose Woodcockair, to which the rook was making wing, and Repentance Hill, with its old Border watch-tower, now inhabited by ghosts and pigeons; while to the right, and far away, the great red disc of the sun, among its curtains of flaming cloud, was hanging over the shoulder of Criffel, and casting a yellow, golden light athwart the whole frith of Solway; on the other side of which, St. Bees' Head, with all the merry ports and granges of Cumberland, swelled gradually up into the hills, where Skiddaw, and Helvellyn, and a thousand nameless peaks, towered away into the azure vault, and shone as if they had been something far better than they were.

These boys were no poets. Indeed, except the author of Lagg's elegy and Macnay, whose ode, beginning with

"A joiner lad has ta'en a trip
Across the Atlantic in a ship,"

(not a cart, or washing-tub, the usual method of conveyance)-has been much admired by the literary world, Annandale has had few poets of note, and no philosopher but "Henderson On the Breeding of Swine;" yet the beauty of such a scene, the calm, rich, reposing loveliness of nature, will penetrate into the dullest heart. These poor fellows felt its influence, though they knew it not; disposing them to peace and friendliness, and generous purposes, beyond the low rudeness of their customary way of life. They took each other's hands-the right in the right, the left in the left, crosswise, though they had no leaning to Popery-and there promised solemnly that they would ever be friends, would back each other out in every quarrel, assist each other in purse and person while they lived; and, to close all,

they added a stipulation, that when one died, the other, if within seas at the time, should see his comrade quietly laid in earth, and their friendship, never broken in this world, consigned devoutly to the prospects of a better. It is not recorded, that any thunder was heard in the sky to ratify this vow-any flight of eagles to the right hand or to the left-or any flight of anything -except, indeed, the flapping, staggering, hovering half-flight of an old and care-worn goose, busily engaged in hatching nine addle eggs by the side of a neighboring brook, and just then issuing forth with much croaking, and hissing, and blustering-less, I fear, to solemnize their engagement, than to seek her evening ration, of which, at that particular date, she felt a strong and very urgent need. It were pity that no such prodigy occurred; for the promise was made in singular circumstances, and, what is stranger still, was faithfully observed. Cruthers and Jonson never quarreled more."

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I lament exceedingly that my ambition of minuteness and fidelity has led me to spin out this history of half a solar day into a length so disproportionate. I lament still more, that the yawning of my readers warns me how needful it is to be more concise in future. I would willingly illustrate by examples, and otherwise dilate upon, the friendship of these two youths, having no brothers by relationship, but now more than brothers to each other. A multitude of battles fought side by side of wild passages by flood and field of pranks, and gallantry, and roysterings within doors and without, which the faithful records of tradition still keep note of, are rising on my fancy; but I must waive them all. Suffice it to conceive, that, through the usual course of joy and sorrow, of rustic business, rustic pleasure-now in sunshine, now in storm-the two striplings had expanded into men; had each succeeded to his father's inheri

tance; had each assumed the features of the character and fortune he was like to bear through life.

Cruthers looked upon himself as a fortunate person. He had found a thriving farm, a well-replenished purse awaiting him; he possessed an active, hardy spirit, and "four strong bones; and, having no rank to maintain, no man's humor but his own to gratify, he felt a certain sufficiency and well-providedness about him, out of which it was natural that a sort of careless independence and frank self-help should spring and find their nourishment. He was, in fact, a ruddy-faced, strong-limbed, large, good-natured, yet indomitable fellow. There was nothing of the lion in his aspect ; yet if you had looked upon his broad Scotch countenance, bespeaking so much force and shrewdness, and unwearied perseverance, the substantial snugness of his attire, the attitude of slow, unpretending fearlessness with which he bore himself-there was none you would have hesitated more to injure, none whose enmity and friendship would have seemed more strongly contrasted. He had lately married a buxom, nut-brown maid_of_the neighborhood; had given up all his frolics, and was now become a staid and solid yeoman. He speculated little upon what are called general subjects. He knew nothing of the "political relations of Europe," or the "balance of the British constitution;" but he understood the prices of grain and farm produce at all the markets of the county, and could predict the issue of Broughhill and St. Faith's cattle fairs with a spirit which resembled that of prophecy. He considered little what might be the foundation of morals, or the evidence for the immortality of the soul; but he paid his teinds duly, and went to church every Sunday. He loved his wife and dependents with a strong and honest, though a rude affection; and would have lent his friend a score or two of guineas as willingly as any man.

With Jonson again all this was different. Heir to a dilapidated for tune and a higher title, his first effort was to retrieve the one that he might support the other. Baffled in this laudable attempt, baffled after long and zealous perseverance, he experienced a chagrin, which but for the honest cordiality of his nature, would have made him a misanthropist. It grieved him to look upon the bright glades and meadows of Knockhill, to think that he had re-. ceived them from a long line of ancestors, and most probably must transmit them to the auctioneer. He had aimed at many high and adventurous objects; had meant to be a soldier, a man of the sea, or at least a rich and happy squire. He now saw himself condemned to be a nameless thing-perhaps a bankrupt and a beggar. These thoughts galled him sorely, they had vexed him to the very heart: yet what was to be done? Zeno would have counseled him to suffer and abstain; Jonson determined to do neither. Unprepared to meet and vanquish the spectre Care, he studied to avoid it he hunted, rode, and visited;, let debts and mortgages accumulate as they would; he talked, and trifled, and frolicked, studying to still uneasy thoughts by every method in his Yet unsuccessfully. He, had a keen and ensitive, though volatile and gamesome mind within him; an active laging temper, and an aimless life. It is hard to exist in quietness without a purpose; hard to cast away anticipation when you have nothing to hope; harder still when ya have everything to fear. Jons could not keep himself at pear in idleness, and he had naught to 10. It seemed probable that he would take to whisky, and the sediction of serving maids at last, and men who looked upon him grieved at this. He was in truth a tall, stately, gallant-looking person as you could have seen; his dark thick locks, his smooth and mild yet proud and spirit-speaking face; his quick blue eyes, through which the 52 ATHENEUM, VOL. 5, 3d series.


soul "peeped wildly," speaking to the careless but of gaiety and wit, and young cheerfulness,-but to others, speaking of a deep and silent pool of sorrow, over which mirth was playing only as a fitful sunbeam to gild, not to warm; all this inspired you at first sight with an interest in him, which his courteous, though quaint and jestful manners, his affectionate and generous temper, converted into permanent good will. He was accordingly a universal favorite; yet he lived unhappily as unprofitably; restless yet inactive; ever gay without-yet ever dreary, often dark within. His disposition and his fortune seemed quite at variance: men of prudence and worldy wisdom would shake their heads whenever you pronounc ed his name.

Such was the state of matters at the beginning of the memorable year 1745. It appears strange, that the conduct of Maria Theresa and the elector of Bavaria should have influenced the conduct of the Laird of Knockhill: yet so it was, for all things are hooked together in this world..

Mathematicians say you cannot let your penknife drop without moving the entire solar system; and I have heard it proved by logicians, who distinguished strongly between what was imperceptible and what was null, that you could not tie your neckcloth well or ill, without in time communicating some impressions of it to all the generations of the world. So much for causes and effects; concerning which see the metaphysicians of Edinburgh, who have illuminated this matter, in my humble opinion, with a philosophic precision for which the world cannot be too grateful. Jonson knew or cared nothing about metaphysics: but the echo of the Highland bagpipe, screwing_forta "Welcome Royal its wild tune, Charlie," was to him what the first red streak of the morning is to a man, who being unfortunately overtaken with liquor over night, has wandered long, long through bogs

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