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that earlier parting in the writer's own life, which was followed indeed by a happy marriage, but not by a union with her who once had possession of his whole heart and being. The passage would be sadly injured by quotation; but the reader may perhaps be reminded how Diana, when in the darkness she had bent for a moment from her Highland pony and handed Frank the packet which was so important to his father's credit, not only pressed his hand, but with her face, “not perhaps altogether unwillingly," touched his. He will remember, also, that as she rode away her cousin and lover gazed after her "almost stupified with surprise and sorrow"; and then, when she had passed from his sight, sat down by the wayside and "shed a flood of the first and most bitter tears which had flowed from my eyes since childhood." This parting should have been the final one. But Scott, like Thackeray afterwards in Esmond, let a "happy ending" do something towards spoiling a fine story.

Whatever were its faults of construction, however, no one will deny that for presentation of character, both national and individual, and delineation of scenery, Rob Roy stands very high indeed. The contrast of Englishman and Scot, Highlander and Lowlander, is illustrated more forcibly, perhaps, in this than in any other novel. Frank Osbaldistone is a typical Englishman, comparatively indifferent to the pecuniary interests which sway the whole soul of his servant Andrew Fairservice; and Bailie Nicol Jarvie, a man of peace never quite at ease

except his feet are on the Glasgow pavement, is yet so much of a brother Scot that, despite extreme differences in mode of life and divergencies in material interest, he finds a most distant family connection an irresistible link with a Highland cateran who despises all traders and sets every law at defiance. As studies of individual character again, what a fine foil to the charming sincerity of Di Vernon is the deep duplicity of Rashleigh! Two main figures exhibit in a striking manner Scott's strength and weakness. The Bailie is indeed for all time the classic figure of the "pawky" Lowland merchant-hard but honest, natural and simply cynical, but kindly, good-natured, even humorous—as true a being of flesh and blood as ever trod the "Saut Market," in the words of Leslie Stephen. It is other with Rob Roy and Rob Roy's wife. Carlyle has objected to Scott as painting from the skin inward, not from the heart outward. Surely false of the Bailie, surely true of the Highland pair. She indeed is a mere declaiming braggart, he is better done, but scarcely a man of flesh and blood. Scott was attracted and moved by the Highland character, but he did not altogether fathom it. He was after all a Saxon, and in the ordinary affairs of life had possibly still something of the Lowlander's deep-rooted contempt for the Celt "benorth the Mont," a contempt curiously expressed in the still current phrase of commendation of anything, as "No sae Hielant." So thus there was an impassable gulf between him and the real Highlander. In the

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deeper sense he did not understand him, and so could not put before others that which he did not see himself. That is why all those brilliant Highland portraits are never completely successful.

Of the many dramatisations of the Waverley Novels one is not surprised that Rob Roy was the most successful, the scene at the Clachan of Aberfoyle being especially

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popular. An ideal representative of the Glasgow weaver and magistrate was found in Scott's time in the person of Charles Mackay, a citizen of the western town; and to-day the play is still popular in Scotland. The scenery of the novel is not less rich in variety than is the characterisation. We are transported from the office of a London merchant to the home of a foxhunting Jacobite squire in Northumberland, which again we leave with Osbaldistone and Fairservice for the


rising city of Glasgow, with its picturesque cathedral (the only one in Scotland spared by John Knox's disciples), its tolbooth (or prison), where the notable interview between Rob Roy and Nicol Jarvie takes place, and its venerable college (now a railway station), in whose grounds Frank and his cousin Rashleigh meet in mortal combat, only to be separated by the ubiquitous Macgregor. Thence we accompany the Bailie, Frank Osbaldistone, and the irrepressible Fairservice to the tryst with Rob Roy at the clachan of Aberfoil across the Forth on the Highland line, a tryst which Rob's capture postpones till after his escape from Montrose's men at the Fords of Frew. We witness with the travellers the discomfiture of the English force by the Highlanders at the pass of Loch Ard, and the vengeance of Helen Macgregor when she has the wretched gauger, who is hostage for her captured husband, thrown headlong into the loch. Finally we retrace our footsteps with the Bailie and Frank towards Glasgow, rowed across the beautiful mountain-girt waters of Loch Lomond by Highland boatmen, and then once more revisit Osbaldistone Hall, learn its inmost secrets, and witness the death of the traitor Rashleigh at the hands of the Highland adventurer, who for that purpose makes a last appearance. Rob Roy was a popular success, and it deserved to be; for it gives a faithful picture of men and manners in Scotland and England as they were at the period of the '15, as Waverley and Redgauntlet did of the Jacobitism of a later date.




HEN, having got rid of his "tough job," Scott set about resuming the Tales of My Landlord, he found ready to his hand some valuable material in a communication from a lady relating to an old woman called Helen Walker whom she had met in Galloway. She was the original from whom Jeanie Deans was drawn. The genius of Scott made her story of humble but heroic nature one of the "Legends of the Ages." Nelly Walker, like Jeanie, walked up to London, and by the help of the Duke of Argyll saved her sister when condemned to death for infanticide, having previously also refused to preserve the other's life by giving false testimony. But, unlike Jeanie, she was laid to rest in Irongray churchyard, poor and unmarried, without any of that generous provision which the Duke bestowed upon his fictitious protégée. Scott was fascinated by the narrative, which he not only elaborated and intermixed with other matter, but carried on to a point much beyond its natural climax. The demolition of the old Edinburgh tolbooth, or jail, about this time probably suggested to his mind the transference. of the scene from western to eastern

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