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this splendid romance of a period full, in his own words, "of the strongest light and shadow, all human passions stirr'd up and stimulated by the most powerful motives, and the contending parties as distinctly contrasted in manners and in modes of thinking as in political principles." Scott held that Claverhouse was no mere persecutor for love of persecution; and though he undoubtedly had some bias against the Whig fanatics, it can scarcely be said that it made him do any substantial injustice even to Burley, the murderer of Archbishop Sharpe. The heroism of the young preacher Macbriar could not have been done more justice to by the most fervid True Blue, and the attitude of the moderate Presbyterian is quite sympathetically set forth in the character of Henry Morton, the imaginary, as Claverhouse is the historical, hero. In fact, the recorded speeches and actions of the zealots show that Scott was well within the mark in his statements. The figures on that side are so well realised and described that we feel the portraits are true. But his picture of Claverhouse is not so cunning. Dundee was a brave, capable, and devoted soldier, but he was not a knight of old romance. There is just a suspicion of tinsel over his splendour. He does not live as the humbler Cuddie and Mause emphatically do. The narrator himself had some family affinities with the Covenanters. An ancestor, Sir William Scott of Harden, suffered, he says, as much through the nonconformity of his wife as did Cuddie Headrigg in the story on account of that of his mother,

Old Mause. In vain he protested that he was totally unable to rule her, and after having been fined for her conduct, even requested the Privy Council to take the management of her ladyship into its own hands! He had to go to prison in Edinburgh Castle and on the Bass Rock for some three years, despite this reasonable offer.

"My father's grandmother," wrote Scott to Lady Abercorn, "who lived to the uncommon age of ninety-eight years, perfectly remembered being carried when a girl to these fieldpreachings with her mother"-they took place on the Eildon Hills near Abbotsford-" where the clergyman thundered from the top of a rock, and the ladies sate upon their side-saddles, which were placed on the turf for their accommodation, while the men all stood round armed with swords and pistols, and watches were kept on each neighbouring eminence to give notice of the approach of the soldiers."

A curious slip of the pen was altered in the second edition of Old Mortality at the suggestion of Lady Louisa Stuart. Claverhouse, who as Viscount Dundee fell at Killiecrankie in 1689, had been made by the author to talk of "sentimental" speeches-a word which did not get into currency till Laurence Sterne brought it in three-quarters of a century after his death. Scott supposed the word owed him a grudge for the ill-will he had always borne it.

The scene of Old Mortality is laid in Clydesdale. Tillietudlem, Lady Bellenden's castle, where Morton besieged his own lady-love, and his follower Cuddie was repulsed by the scalding brose of his future wife Jenny,

had its original in the ruins of Craignethan Castle, once really the property of a Lord Evandale. While staying with Lady Douglas at Bothwell Castle, in this neighbourhood, Scott had expressed such an admiration for its scenery, that he was offered by his host the life-use of a small house there for a summer residence. The


The first series of Tales of My Landlord included, besides Old Mortality, a shorter story called The


Black Dwarf. A chance meeting in Scott's early life was the germ from which this tale sprung. When on his way to the English lakes in the summer of 1797 Scott

acceptance of the Selkirkshire Sheriffdom shortly afterwards compelled him to decline the offer. Much of the scenery of the romance was, however, according to Skene, taken from that of the wild region round Moffat, through which Scott and he rode in the early days at Ashestiel.


* One of those who were in the Waverley secret pointed out to Scott how he had imperilled his anonymity by giving to the little dog which recognises Morton on his return from abroad the very name-not a common one-which Lady Douglas had suggested for one of her daughter's pets.

stayed at Hallyards in Tweeddale with Dr. Ferguson, the father of his friend Captain Adam Ferguson, who read The Lady of the Lake to his men in Portugal. In the Vale of Manor there lived, about a mile off, an extraordinary creature who went by the name of "Bow'd Davie." He was a dwarf, not quite three and a half feet high, who, driven from his occupation as a brushmaker by the scorn of his fellow-men, had retired from the world to his native glens, and built himself a house with his own hands, planting rowans or mountain ashes round it to keep off the fairies. He had an oblong skull --so hard that he could easily strike it within the doorpanel; deep-set black eyes and hideous features; fin-like feet on which he never wore shoes, and misshapen legs the outline of which he never allowed to be seen; a shrill, uncouth voice, and a horrible laugh. He always walked with a tall pole, called a kent.

It was this David Ritchie with whom Scott, in company with his host, had the memorable interview described by Chambers. The Dwarf seemed to find in his visitor's lameness a bond of sympathy. He grinned at him, locked the door, and seizing him by the wrist, asked him if he had any "power"-that is, magical power, to which he himself pretended. When Scott disclaimed any such gifts, he signalled to a black cat, which thereupon jumped upon a shelf, as if to attract attention. "He has poo'er; ay, he has poo'er," repeated the uncanny being, seating himself as he spoke, and grinning horribly, when he observed the impression he

had made. At this point Dr. Ferguson prevailed on him to undo the door; and Scott retired, pale as ashes and shaking in every limb. Yet this unnatural creature delighted in the beauties of nature, and was heard by Scott himself declaiming long passages of Paradise Lost. During his last years the Black Dwarf lived in a house, still existing, which was built for him by the owner of the land on which he had raised the original hut of turf and stones. He died in 1811, and was buried in Manor Kirkyard, where the brothers Chambers, the Edinburgh publishers, erected more than thirty years later a stone with commemorative inscription. A sister, whom he latterly allowed to live in a partitioned-off part of his house, survived her brother, and was much annoyed by the curiosity of the public concerning him, replying bitterly to all inquiries, "Why not let the dead rest in peace?"

Neither Scott nor his publishers were quite satisfied with The Black Dwarf. The author himself said that he had begun a Border tale well enough, but tired of it, not finding scope enough for his imagination; and so had "bungled up a conclusion as a boarding-school Miss finishes a task which she had commenced with great glee and accuracy." Nevertheless, he was very angry with Messrs. Murray and Blackwood when they suggested that he should write it again, absolutely refusing to do any such thing, though they were taking more than the usual risk by agreeing (in deference to Constable's susceptibilities and Scott's whim) to issue

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