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tions as are necessary to render them harmonious parts have been found to gratify the curiosity of the mineralogist, of a whole, and unless the writers whom they employ yet the previous details show that valuable ores of iron, possess enough of generosity and self-denial to submit to copper, lead, and tin, and also graphite, or black-lead, are his way.
met with. And now, having discharged this most ungracious part of mineral substances, are not wanting in the Arctic re
“ 11. That the gems, the most valued and most beautiful of our task, we turn with pleasure to the more welcome gions, as is proved by the occurrence there of precious garduty of bearing testimony to the quantity of amusement nets, beryls, zircondichrottes, and rock crystals. and instruction which are to be found blended in this « 12. "That the islands and lands described in the sketch, work. From Professor Jameson's dissertation, we ob. exhibit the same general geognostical arrangements as occur tain, with the aid of the map, the most complete and in all other extensive tracts of country hitherto examined authentic information respecting the geography of the by the naturalist,-a fact which strengthens that opinion arctic regions. We also learn, from his interesting ab- mineral kingdom, are everywhere similar, and, conse
which maintains that the grand features of nature, in the stract, the nature of the various soils and rocks, and the quently, that the same general agencies must have prevailed general features of the islands and continents which are during the formation of the different groups of rucks of scattered through the icy sea. We regret that our limits which the earth is composed." do not permit us to present our readers with more than Professor Leslie's contribution to the present volume the general conclusions drawn by the learned Professor is characterised by profound and comprehensive views of from the facts he details :
the phenomena of climate. He establishes, in a manner “ The observations made in Cherie island, Jan Mayen's happily removed alike from the dryness of an abstruse island, Spitzbergen, Old Greenland, and the various lands speculator, and the superficiality of a mere popular author, and islands tirst explored during the four Arctic expeditions, the premises from which a true theory of climate are to viz. that under Captain Ross, and the three under Captain be inferred. He demonstrates the unaltered character of Parry, afford the following general facts and interences:
“1. That these miserable and almost uninhabited regions the arctic climate, at least for that period of which we abound in primitive and transition rocks; and that although possess authentic records. He lays before us, with graphic secondary rocks occupy considerable tracts, still, as far as is power, the most striking phenomena of the arctic regions. known at present, their extent is more limited than that of One specimen is all that we can afford of the felicitous the older formations; that the alluvial deposits are not ex manner in which he has accomplished his task : tensive; that true modern volcanic rocks occur only in Jan Mayen's island ; and that the only traces of tertiary strata
“ After the continued action of the sun has at last melted were found in sand-stones and clays, and lime-stones con- away the great body of ice, a short and dubious interval of nected with the new trap-rocks in Baffin's Bay.
warmth occurs. In the space of a few weeks, only visited “2. That the Neptunian, primitive, and transition rocks, by slanting and enfeebled rays, frost again resumes his trenow forming islands of various magnitudes, were in all pro- the whole ground is covered, to the depth of two or three
mendous sway. It begins to snow as early as August, and bability at one time connected together, and formed a more continuous mass of land than at present; and that on these feet, before the month of October. Along the shores and formations were deposited the secondary lime-stones, sand- the bays, the fresh water, poured from rivulets, or drained stones, gypsum, and coal, and upon these again the tertiary from the thawing of former collections of snow, becomes rocks, and the still newer shell-clay of Spitzbergen. That quickly converted into solid ice. As the cold augments, these various kinds of primary transition, secondary, and the air deposits its moisture in the form of a fog, which tertiary rocks and alluvial clays were raised above the level freezes into a fine gossamer netting, or spicular icicles, disof the sea, at different times, through the agency of the ig- persed through the atmosphere, and extremely minute, that neous and volcanic rocks.
might seem to pierce and excoriate the skin. 'The hoar frost “3. That in the course of time the land was broken up. The whole surface of the sea steains like a limekilo—an ap
setiles profusely, in fantastic clusters, ou every prominence. either suddenly or by degrees, or partly by sudden and violent action, and partly by long-continued agency of the at pearance called the frost smoke-caused, as in other instances mosphere and the ocean, into its present insular form; and of the production of vapour, by the water's being still relathat, consequently, the secondary and tertiary formations tively warmer than the incumbent air. At length the diswere formerly in these regions more extensively distributed persion of the mist, and consequent clearness of the atmothan at present.
sphere, announce that the upper stratum of the sea itself bas “4. That previously to the disposition of the coal forma-cooled to the same standard; a sheet of ice spreads quickly tion, as in Melville Island and in Jameson's Land, the pre
over the smooth expanse, and often gains the thickness of viously-existing, or older hills, supported a vegetation re
an inch in a single night. The darkness of a prolonged sembling that which at present characterises the tropical winter now broods impenetrably over the frozen continent, regions. The fossil corals in the lime-stones, corals, of which unless the moon chance at times to obtrude her faint rays, the prototypes are at present met with in the hot seas of the which only discover the horrors and wide desolation of the tropical regions, also intimate that before, during, and after scene.
The wretched settlers, covered with a luad of bearthe deposition of the coal formation, the waters of the Arc- skins, remain crowded and immured in their huts, every tic Ocean were so constituted as to support polyparia, or
chink of which they carefully stop against the piercing corals, resembling those of the present equatorial seas.
external cold; and, cowering about the stove or the lamp, “5. That probably the ancient climates of the Arctic re- they seek to doze away the tedious night. Their slender gions were connected in some degree with the former mag
stock of provisions, though kept in the same apartment, is nitude and form of the Arctic lauds, and their relations to often frozen so hard as to require to be cut by a hatcbet. the magnitude and height of other countries.
The whole of the inside of their hut becomes lined with a “ 6. That the boulders, or rolled blocks, met with in dif- thick crust of ice; and, if they happen for an instant to ferent quarters, and in tracts distant from their original lo- open a window, the moisture of the confined air is immecalities, afford evidence of the passage of water across them, diately precipitated in the form of a shower of snow. As and at a period subsequent to the deposition of the newest the frost continues to penetrate deeper, the rocks are heard Neptunian strata.
at a distance to split with loud explosions. The sleep of “7. That possibly the distribution of the erratic blocks, or death seems to wrap up the scene in utter and oblivious boulders, was occasioned by the agitations in the ocean,
ruin. *" caused by the upraising of certain lands.
When we turn from the pictures of the soil and cli“ 8. 'l'hat the black, or common coal, the coal of the mate of these dreary regions to the history of animated old or the most abundant coal formation, which some spe- nature, we find the sea and air swarming with living eulators maintain to be contined to the more temperate and
creatures. warmer regions on the earth, is now proved-by its disco
The gelatinous creatures, which form the very by Parry in Melville Island, far to the west, and by lowest scale of vital existence, crowd the ocean to a deScoresbr, far to the east in Jameson's Land,-to form an interesting frature in the geoguostical constitution of Arctic * The sound of voices, which, during the cold weather, emuld be countries.
heard at a much greater distance than usual, served now and then “ 9. That the new red sand-stone and gypsum found in to break the silence which reigned around us2 silence far different tracts, allow us to infer that they contain rock-salt.
from that peaceable composure which characterises the landscape of
a cultivated country: it was the death-like stillness of the ins st “ 10. That although few nei metalliferous specimens dreary ciesolation, and the absence of animate existence.
gree unknown in other climates, affording dainty and plen-, a scoop, succeeded in alarming the monster, who made off, tiful repasts to myriads of fishes. Among these are many leaving the captain without the slightest injury. species of whales, yielding rich harvests of oil; while, “ In 1788, Captain Cook, of the Archangel, when near from beneath the ice-bergs, the herrings depart annually the paws of a bear. He instantly called upon the surgeon
the coast of Spitzbergen, found himself suddenly between to carry wealth and subsistence to more genial regions. who accompanied him to fire, which the latter did with The tusks of the walrus afford beautiful ivory; and the such admirable promptitude and precision, that he shot the numerous flocks of birds are furnished with a peculiarly beast through the head, and delivered the captain. Mr delicate and abundant down.
Hawkins, of the Everthrope, in July 1918, having pursued Where such sources of wealth are exposed to view, the and twice struck a large bear, had raised his lance for a dangers arising from a cold and stormy climate, or from third blow, when the animal sprang forward, seized im ferocious animals, have proved insufficient to deter men Fortunately it used this advantage, only to effect its own
by the thigh, and threw him over its head into the water. from approaching. During the brief arctic sumıner, the escape. Captain Scoresby mentions a boat's crew which ships of all nations may be seen braving the dangers of attacked a bear in the Spitzbergen sea ; but the animal hathe Polar seas in quest of those commodities which bear a ving succeeded in climbing the sides of the boat, all the price in their own land. The perils which beset the sailors threw themselves, for safety, into the water, where mariner here are peculiarly calculated to excite the ima- they hung by thegunwale. The victor entered triumphantly, gination. The insidious and noiseless cold hems him in, and took possession of the barge, where it sat quietly, till it by converting the buoyant element through which he was shot by another party. The same writer inentious the steers his way into a solid mass. Even during the sea
ingenious contrivance of a sailor, who, being pursued by son which is, by courtesy, termed summer, huge moun- jacket, handkerchief, and every other article in his posses
one of these creatures, threw down successively his hat, tains, detached from the main body of the ice, are driven sivn, when the brute, pausing at each, gave the sailor always through the open sea, threatening destruction to the ves a certain advantage, and enabled him tinally to regain the sels they encounter. Even when becalmed or stranded, vessel. they do not cease to be dangerous, although they are so
“ Though the voracity of the bear is such, that he has after a more insidious fashion. Large masses separate in been known to feed on his own species, yet maternal tensilence from their bases, deep under water, and ascend, on inhabitants of the frozen regions.
derness is as conspicuous in the female, as in the other
There is no exertion account of their buoyancy, with an accelerating velocity, which she will not make for the supply of her progeny: A. sufficient to beat in the sides or bottom of any vessel they she-bear, with her two cubs, being pursued by some sailors may chance to encounter. To all these inanimate objects, across a field of ice, and tinding that, neither by example, co-operating with, and increasing the ordinary perils of, nor by a peculiar voice and action, she could urge them to the winds and waves, are added the ferocious attacks of the requisite speed, applied her paws, and pitched them savage animals; but this part of the story we shall leave alternately forward. The little creatures themselves, as to Mr Murray to tell :
she came up, threw themselves before her to receive im“ The annals of the north are filled with accounts of the pulse
, and thus both she and they effected their escape." most perilous and fatal conflicts with the Polar bear. The
The population, however, of these savage regions is not
A race of men, first, and one of the most tragical, was sustained by Barentz confined entirely to occasional visitors. and Heemskerk in 1596, during their voyage for the dis as dull almost as their climate, are spread along its coasts. covery of the north-east passage. Having anchored at an We might almost term the Esquimaux a people in whom island near the strait of Weygatz, two of the sailors landed, the workings of fancy and intellect have been frozen up. and were walking on shore, when one of them felt himself | What traces of humanity they do retain, will appear from dusely hugged from behind. Thinking this a frolic of one the following extract : of his companions, he called out, in a corresponding tone, • Who's there? pray stand off.' His comrade looked, and “ The Esquimaux, during this expedition, became the screamed out, A bear ! a bear ! then running to the ship, subjects of a inore minute observation than had ever before alarıned the crew with loud cries. The sailors ran to the been made upon them by Europeans. They constitute a spot, armed with pikes and muskets. On their approach, most widely-diffused race, occupying all the shores of the the bear very coolly quitted the manyled corpse, sprang upon Northern ocean, and embracing nearly the entire ciranother sailor, carried himn off, and plunging his teeth into cuit of the globe. Richardson and Franklin found them his body, began drinking his blood at long draughts. Here- along the whole coast of the American Polar sea; Kotzebue, tipon, the whole of that stout crew, struck with terror, in the channel near Behring's Straits. The Samnoiedes and turned their backs, and Hed precipitately to the ship. Ou Kamtchadales, in northern Asia, seem to belong to the arriving there they began to look at each other, unable to same family. A similarity of visage and figure, boats, huts, fel much satisfaction with their own prowess. Three and instruinents,-even a resemblance in habits, character, then stood forth, undertaking to avenge the fate of their and mode of lite, -might have been produced by the comcountrymen, and secure to them the rites of burial. They mon pressure of the same very peculiar outward circumadvanced, and fired at first from so respectful a distance, that stances. The affinity of speech, however, which is such as all missed. The purser then courageously proceeded in proves the dialects of all the Esquimaux to be inere varieties front of bis companions, and, taking a close aim, pierced the of one common language, affords a clear proof, that an eri. monster's skull immediately below the eye. The bear, ginal race from some one quarter, has spread over the whole however, merely lifted his head, and allvanced upon thein, range of those immense and desolute shores. This migraholding still in his mouth the victim whoin he was devour- tion must have been facilitated by the vast continuity of ing; but seeing him soon stagger, the three rushed on with coast, which stretches along the Arctic ocean, and which is sabre and bayonet, and soon dispatched him. They collected not equalled in any other quarter. Hence, probably, the and bestowed decent sepulture on the mangled limbs of their Esquimaux, at distant ages, connected the old and new comrarles, while the skin of the animal, thirteen feet long, continents, which, at all other points, were then wholly became the prize of the sailor who had fired the successful unknown to each other. shot.
“ The external form of that people seems influenced, and, “ The history of the whale-fishery records a number of as it were, characterised, by the severity of the climate. remarkable escapes from the bear. A Dutch captain, Jonge Their stature is decidedly lower than that of the Europeans; Kess, in 1668, undertook, with two canoes, to attack one, five feet nine inches being considered, even in a man, as aland with a lance gave him so dreadful a wound in the belly, most gigantic. Though the trunk of the body is somewhat that his immediate death seemed inevitable. Anxious, thick, all the extremities are small, especially the hands and therefore, not to injure the skin, Kees merely followed the feet, and the finger's short. The face is broad and flat, the animal close, till he should drop down dead. The bear, nose small, and at the saine time, so sunk and deep, that in however, having climbed a little rock, made a spring from some instances, a ruler could be applied troin cheek to cheek the distance of twenty-four teet upon the captain, who, without touching it. It is somewhere observed, that their taken completely by surprise, lost hold of the lance, and fell visage presents that peculiar form which the human face beneath the assailant, who, placing both paws on his breast, naturally assumes under exposure to intense cold, that all opened two rows of tremendous teeth, and paused for a the projecting features are drawn in, and the cheeks, conDoment, as if to show him all the horrors of his situation. sequently, pushed out. In the same way, exposure to the At this critical instant, a sailor, rushing forward with only weather may perbaps produce the high cheekbones of
mountaineers. Under these modifications, however, both where light after light was put out, till they were left their bodies and their limbs are very tolerably shaped. Even in total darkness. Zoolemak then, after loud invocations, the female countenance, though without pretensions to re professed to descend to the world below to bring ap the gular beauty, is often agreeable, with a frank and good goddess. Soon there rose a loud chant of peculiar sound, humoured expression ; so that, were it cleared of the thick imagined to be the voice of Aywillaigoo. During half crust of grease and dirt, so as to exbibit the real complexion, an hour, in reply to the loud screams and questions of wbich is only that of a deep brunette, it might, even in her votaries, she uttered dubious and mystical responses; Europe, be reckoned handsome. The skin is unctuous, and after which, the sound died away, and she was supposed to unpleasantly cold to the touch; the flesh soft and flabby, descend beneath the earth, when Zoolemak, with a shout, owing, probably, to the fat animal substances which form announced his own return to the upper world. The mathe principal part of their food.
gician, however, being soon after on board a British ship,
was treated with nine glasses of bot water (brandy, under “ In their moral qualities, the Esquimaux, or at least the influence of which he began to act over again his ethis particular tribe, present much that is worthy of coin chantments, when it appeared, that by varying modes of mendation. At the first opening of the intercourse, the applying the hand or jacket to the mouth, he produced those most uadeviating honesty marked all their conduct, though changeful sounds which had passed for the words of Aywilthis quality, in the course of two winters' communication, laigoo. This divinity has for her father a giant with one was considerably undermined. They were exposed, in
The Esquimaux pantheon comprises, moreover, deed, to most severe temptations, by seeing constantly scat- Pamiooli, a spirit frequently invoked, and a large bear, tered about the ships little planks, pieces of old iron, and whose dwelling is in the middle of the ice, and who freempty tin pots, which was to them as if the decks had been quently holds con verse with mankind. The natives believe strewed with gold and jewels. It also came to their know- also in a future world, the employments and pleasures of ledge that, in some of their early exchanges, rich skins had which, according to the usual creer of savage races, are all been bartered for beads, and other trifles of no real value, sensual. The soul descends beneath the earth through suca system against which they exclaimed as absolute robbery.cessive abodes, the first of which has somewhat of the naFrom first to last, the virtue now mentioned was practised ture of purgatory ; but the good spirits, passing through it, among themselves in a manner worthy of the golden age. find the other mansions successively improve, till they reach
Their dresses, sledges, and all their implements of hunting that of perfect bliss, far beneath, where the sun never sets, and fishing, were left exposed inside or outside of the huts, and where, by the side of large lakes, that never freeze, the without any instance being known of their having been deer roam in vast herds, and the seal and walrus abound in carried off. Property, without the aid of laws or tribunals, the waters." was in the most perfect security. The common right to We could have wished to enter into the interesting the products of the chase marks also a singular union, with details given by Mr Murray respecting the mode in which out seeming to relax their diligence in search of food, though the whale-fishery is carried on, and its national importit may perhaps contribute to their very thoughtless consumption of it. The navigators admit that they were re
ance, but we have already allotted to the consideration of wived with the most cordial hospitality into the little buts, this work as large a space as we can well afford. We where the best meat was set before them, and the women have spoken freely of what we conceive to be its defects, vied with each other in the attentions of cooking, and drying because, were they removed, we know of no work among and mending their clothes. The women working and the many daily offered to the public that would exceed singing, their husbands quietly mending their lines, the it in value or interest. We heartily wish that its pubchildren playing before the door, and the pot boiling over the blaze of a cheerful lamp,' gave a pleasing picture of
lishers may meet with the patronage wbich their intellisavage life. Yet a continued intercourse showed that the gence and enterprise so well deserve. Esquimaux inherited their full share of human frailty. Begging we shall pass over, though in many instances persevering and incessant, because it seems to have been called Letters on Demonology and Witchcraft, addressed to J. forth almost entirely by their connexion with our country
G. Lockhart, Esq. By Sir Walter Scott, Bart. (Famun, and by too lavish presents at the first; wbile their mily Library, No. XVI.) London. John Murray. little bursts of envy appear to have flowed from the same 1830.
But the fair Esquimaux are charged with strong propensity to slander and detraction, which were as busy
This is just such a work as ought to find a place in a among them as they sat in circles round the door mending family library. It contains a great number of witch and their lines, as in the most fashionable drawing-rooms. ghost stories, told in an elegant and amusing manner,
Their own conduct, meantime, is said to have afforded the strung upon a slender and scarce apparent thread of armost ample scope for censure, especially in regard to connubial fidelity; and yet, when it is admitted that these faults gument. We do not think that Sir Walter has gone very were carefully concealed, and much outward decorum ob deep into the theory of supernatural visitations, or thrown served, and that the propensity to calumny often led the much new light upon the origin of the belief in them ; natives beyond the strict limits of truth, we doubt whether but he has given a candid view of the progress of a mind too implicit reliance may not have been placed on the scan- which, at one period, delighted to indulge in the feverish dalous chronicle of the frozen regions. The natives cer- excitement of a momentary acquiescence in the truth of sutainly do appear to display a peculiar apathy in regard to perstitious tales, and which has, in maturer years, outgrown the sufferings and even the death of neighbours and rela- that childish' taste. tions. Widows, and the aged and infirm, if they have not commenced his literary career, Monk Lewis, and a herd
About the time when Sir Walter children of their own, experience the greatest indifference. In times of plenty, indeed, they share in the general abun- of imitators, were striving hard to eke out naturally dance of food; but, during scarcity, a very small quantity sterile imaginations, by borrowing from the records of reaches them, and, receiving no attendance in their sickness, outworn superstition. Scott gave in to the folly for a they often perish through pure want and neglect. The little, but his naturally strong understanding, and his children are treated with extreme tenderness; though the practice of adoption, which prevails most extensively, and worthlessness of such inspiration, and to turn to the
common sense, taught him soon to feel the emptiness and which establishes in full force, bet ween the parties, the ties healthier fields of human life. of father and child, is practised with regard to boys only, and seemingly with the view that they inay contribute to
Demonology and Witchcraft are diseases of the mind. support the old age of their fictitious parents.
Their absurd mythology is the produce of weak nerves, “ The religious ideas of the Esquimaux, though they and confused ideas. When the bodily functions are decannot be diguified with any better name than superstition, ranged, be it through the extreme of misery or of riotous are not much more absurd than the popular creed of the indulgence, we are often conscious of a vague and unacancient Greeks and Romans. Ay willaigoo, a female, immensely tall, with only the left countable sensation, more nearly resembling terror than eye, wearing a pigtail reaching to her knee, so thick that it any other feeling. A higher degree of the disease procan scarcely be grasped by both hands. Captain Lyon
duces delirium-a state of mind in which the ordinary witnessed a mighty incantation, in which Zoojemak, the associations of thought seem violently broken up, and the chief magician, summoned Aywillaigoo to the upper world disconnected ideas drift unconnectedly ath wart the brain. to utter her oracles. The party were assembled in a hut, 1 In this state, every painful sensation suggests some odious
and revolting extornal cause-snakes coiling around, toads it, but that was owing to the benevolence of bis nature, crawling over our limbs, and such like. This is the source
which made him love to see the relief of distress. He went of our belief in malignant demens, who hover around us, little, or rather never, abroad ; but then, his habits were of ever on the watch to poison the springs of life and hap- much companybut he daily re-eived visits from the first
a domestic, and rather sedentary character. He did not see piness. Superstition may assume different forms and characters in the renowned medical school of this city, and colours, according to the local situation, the religious and he could not, therefore, be much in want of society. With moral creeds, the state of information, of the people sub- so many supposed comforts around him,—with so many ject to its sway,—but to this fertile source it may still be visions of wealth and splendour, one thing alone disturbed Eraced. But for this sickness, it never could have origi- the peace of the poor optimist, and would indeed have counated-and only in constitutions so shattered and debi- founded most bons vivans ;-He was curious,' he said, 'in litated, can it retain a vital existence.
his table, choice in his selection of cooks, had every day a Such a loathsome subject is unfit for true poetry. We somehow or other, every thing he eat tasted of porridge.?
dinner of three regular courses and a dessert; and yet, do not deny that it may at times awake a half-pleasure- This dilemma could be no great wonder to the friend to zable thrill; but this fits it as little to become a material whom the poor patient communicated it, who knew the worthy the workmanship of the poet, as the rich and lunatic eat nothing but this simple aliment at any of his delicately mingling dies of a cancer, render it a proper meals. The case was obvious ; the disease lay in the ex-object for the paiuter to represent, The aspirations of treme vivacity of the patient's imagination, deluded in other the soul to comprehend the being and attributes of Deity, with the honest evidence of his stomach and palate, which,
instances, yet not absolutely powerful enough to contend sits timid longings after immortality, are fit themes for like Lord Peter's brethren, in the Tale of a Tub, were insong; but these are as different from the craven appre- | dignant at the attempt to impose boiled oatmeal upon them, hensions of the believer in witchcraft, as the pure atino- instead of such a banquet as Ude would bave displayed sphere on the mountain tops from the mud in the streets. when peers were to partake of it. Here, therefore, is one But not only was that perversion of taste, which sought instance of actual insanity, in which the sense of taste conmaterials for poetry and romance in tales of diablerie, trolled, and attempted to restrain, the ideal hypothesis unhealthy, it was, even independent of this circumstance, which I previously alluded, is entirely of a bodily character,
adopted by a deranged imagination. But the disorder to hollow and worthless. The day had gone past when and consists principally in the disease of the visual organs, men could sympathise in such horrors. No one could which present to the patient a set of spectres or appearances, berieve them—their very authors, ashamed of their own which have no actual existence. It is a disease of the same weak inventions, sought to do away with their super- nature, which renders many men incapable of distinguish natural incidents, by natural explanations. They were, ing colours; only the patients go a step farther, and pervert like actors walking on the stage, trying to persuade them- the external form of objects. In their case, therefore, conselves that their pasteboard decorations are real graves, trary to that of the maniac, it is not the mind, or rather
the imagination, which imposes upon, and overpowers, the their readers, like great lubberly lads, seeking for amuse evidence of the senses, but the sense of seeing (or hearing) ment in the games of children.
which betrays its duty, and conveys false ideas to a saue Bat in thus seeking to exclude witchcraft (in general intellect.” —we allow some excepted cases) from the category of the poetical, we do not mean to deny that there is a way of
It is in this same chapter that Sir Walter gives an acpresenting it to the contemplation so as to become a pleasing count of his vision of Lord Byron after the death of that and profitable object. It may afford much amusement, illustrious poet. We know that our readers will be anviewed as a curious mental problem. We may pass the xious to hear Sir Walter on this subject : time worse than in dissecting this diseased part of the system. And this is exactly the plan which Sir Walter reason for vouching as a fact, though, for cereas o ai
“ Another illusion of the same nature, we have the best has adopted. The consequence is, that he has produced we do not give the names of the parties. Not long after an interesting book. To be sure, he is (like some pro- the death of a late illustrious poet, who had filled, while fessors of chemistry) not very profound, but then he lec- living, a great station in the eye of the public, a literary tures gracefully, and performs his experiments with un- friend, to whom the deceased had been well known, was rivalled neatness.
engaged, during the darkening twilight of an autumn The work is divided into ten chapters : letters, Sir evening, in perusing one of the publications which professed Walter is pleased to call them—we know not why; for vidual who was now no more. As the reader had enjoyed
to detail the habits and opinions of the distinguished indithey are no more Jetters than this review is. They are the intimacy of the deceased to a considerable degree, he regular didactic chapters. The first contains an exposi- was deeply interested in the publication, which contained tion of the origin of the more prevalent opinions respect- some particulars relating to himself and other friends. A ing demonology. This chapter is elegantly composed visitor was sitting in the apartment, who was also engaged throughout, and contains many really acute remarks, but in reading. Their sitting-room opened into an entranceis , on the whole, not a little desultory. It goes round the ball, rather fantastically
titted up with armour, skins of
wild animals, and the like. It was when laying down his bash and round the bush, and ends nearly where it be- book, and passing into this hall, through which the moon gins. The following remarks on the difference between was beginning to shine, that the individual of whom I those nervous disorders which superinduce a disposition speak saw, right before him, and in a standing posture, the to see apparitions, and insanity, strike us as peculiarly exact representation of his departed friend, whose recolhappy :
lection had been so strongly brought to his imagination.
He stopped for a single moment, so as to notice the won“ This frightful disorder is not properly insanity, although derful accuracy with which fancy had impressed upon the it is somewhat allied to that most horriðle of maladies, and bodily eye, the peculiarities of dress and posture of the illusmay, in many constitutions, be the means of bringing it on, trious poet. Sensible, however, of the delusion, he felt no and although such hallucinations are proper to both. The sentiment save that of wonder at the extraordinary accudifference I conceive to be, that, in cases of insanity, the racy of the resemblance, and stepped onwards towards the mind of the patient is principally affected, while the senses, figure, which resolved itself, as he approached, into the er organized system, offer in vain to the lunatic their decided various materials of which it was composed. These were testimony against the fantasy. of a deranged imagination. merely a screen, occupied by great-coats, shawls, plaids, and Perhaps the nature of this collision between a disturbed such other articles as usually are found in a country euimagination and organs of sense possessed of their usual ac trance-hall. The spectator returned to the spot from which curacy, cannot be better described than in the embarrass- he had seen the illusion, and endeavoured, with all his inent expressed by an insane patient confined in the Infir- power, to recall the image which had been so singularly mnary of Edinburgh. The poor man's malady had taken a vivid. But this was beyond his capacity; and the person gay turn. The house, in his idea, was his own, and he con- who bad witnessed the apparition, or, more properly, whose trived to account for all that seemed inconsistent with his excited state had been the means of raising it, had only to imaginary right of property ;-there were many patients in return into the apartment, and tell his young friend under
what a striking hallucination he had for a moinent la- her a fit victim. At present, the story is scarcely worth boured.”
mentioning, but as it contains materials resembling thase The second chapter we could have wished omitted. It out of which many tragic incidents have arisen.” professes to treat of the scriptural doctrines regarding evil
Sir Walter sums up his argument by contrasting two spirits, and their intercourse with men. This is a delicate and difficult topic; and although Sir Walter brings of life when the heart beats a ready alarm to a tale of
pictures--the one of the state of the mind at that period an immense mass of biblical learning to bear upon the terror ; the other, its feelings at the more advanced period, 2 enquiry, it does not appear to us that he has succeeded one when its susceptibility to such excitement has become a whit better than his predecessors.
Chapter third discusses the demonology of the heathen dulled. We think the contrast well managed, and the world ; chapters fourth, fifth, and sixth, the belief in
concluding remarks extremely just : fairies; chapters seventh, eighth, and ninth, the belief in “ The charm of the tale depends much upon the age of witchcraft; the concluding chapter is occupied with a the person to whom it is addressed; and the vivacity of summary of other mystic arts. In the puzzling history fancy which engages us in youth to pass over much that is of witchcraft, our greatest difficulty has always been the absurd, in order to enjoy some single trait of imagination, apparent belief on the parts of many of the unhappy suf- the sadder and graver regions which lie beyond it. I am
dies within us when we obtain the age of manhood, and ferers in the reality of their guilt. The following anec- the more conscious of this, because I have been myself, at dote seems to throw some light upon this knotty point : two periods of my life, distant from each other, in situations
“ The last Scottish story with which I will trouble you, favourable to that degree of superstitious awe which my happened in, or shortly after, the year 1800, and the whole countrymen expressively call being eerie. circumstances are well known to me. The dearth of the “ On the first of these occasions, I was only nineteep or years in the end of the eighteenth, and beginning of this twenty years old, when I happened to pass a night in the century, was inconvenient to all, but distressing to the poor. magnificent old baronial castle of Glammis, the hereditary A solitary old woman, in a wild and lonely district, sub- seat of the Earls of Strathmore. The boary pile contains sisted chiefly by rearing chickens an operation requiring much in its appearance, and in the traditions connected so much care and attention, that the gentry, and even the with it, impressive to the imagination. It was the scene farmers' wives, often find it better to buy poultry at a cer of the murder of a Scottish king of great antiquity; not, intain age, than to undertake the trouble of bringing them deed, the gracious Duncan, with whom the name naturally up. As the old woman, in the present instance, fought her associates itself, but Malcolm the Second. It contains also way through life better than her neighbours, envy stigma- a curious monument of the peril of feudal times, being a tized her as having some unlawful mode of increasing the secret chamber, the entrance of which, by the law or cus gains of her little trade, and apparently she did not take tom of the family, must only be known to three persons at much alarm at the accusation. But she felt, like others, the once-viz. the Earl of Strathmore, his heir apparent, and dearth of the years alluded to, and chiefly, because the any third person whom they inay take into their contidence. farmers were unwilling to sell grain in the very moderate the extreme antiquity of the building is vouched by the quantities which she was able to purchase, and without immense thickness of the walls, and the wild and straggling wbich, her little stock of poultry must have been inevitably arrangement of the accommodation within doors. As the starved. In distress on this account, the dame went to a late Earl of Strathmore seldom resided in that ancient mapneighbouring farmer, a very good-natured, sensible, honest sion, it was, when I was there, but half furnished, and that man, and requested him, as a favour, to sell her a peck of with moveables of great antiquity, which, with the pieces oats at any price. • Good neighbour,' said he, ' I am sorry of chivalric armour hanging upon the walls, greatly contrito be obliged to refuse you, but my corn is measured out buted to the general effect of the whole. After a very hos. for Dalkeith market; my carts are loaded to set out, and to pitable reception from the late Peter Proctor, Esq., then open these sacks again, and for so small a quantity, would senescbal of the castle, in Lord Stratbmore's absence, I cast my accounts loose, and create much trouble and disad- was conducted to my apartment, in a distant corner of the vantage; I dare say you will get all you want at such a building. I must own, that as I heard door after door place, or such a place.' On receiving this answer, the old shut, after my conductor had retired, I began to consider woman's temper gave way. She scolded the wealthy farmer, myself too far from the living, and somewhat too near the and wished ev.l to his property, which was just setting off dead. We had passed through what is called the King's for market. They parted, after some angry language on room,' a vaulted apartinent, garnished with stags' antlers both sides; and sure enough, as the carts crossed the ford and similar trophies of the chase, and said by tradition to of the river bencath the farm-house, off came the wheel be the spot of Malcolm's murder, and I had an idea of the from one of them, and five or six sacks of corn were da- vicinity of the castle chapel. maged by the water. The good farmer hardly knew what to “In spite of the truth of history, the whole night scene think of this; these were the two circumstances deemed of in Macbeth's castle rushed at once upon my mind, and old essential and sufficient to the crime of witchcraft-Dam- struck my imagination more forcibly than even when I num minatum, et malum secutum. Scarce knowing what have seen its terrors represented by the late John Kernble to believe, he hastened to consult the sheriff of the county, and his inimitable sister. In a word, I experienced senseas a friend rather than as a magistrate, upon a case so ex- tions which, though not remarkable either for timidity or traordinary. The official person showed him that the laws superstition, did not fail to affect me to the point of being aguinst witchcraft were abrogated, and had little difficulty disagreeable, while they were mingled at the same time with to bring him to regard the matter in its true light of an ac- a strange and indescribable kind of pleasure, the recollection cident.
of which affords me gratification at this moment. “ It is strange, but true, that the accused herself was not “ In the year 1811, accident placed me, then past middle to be reconciled to the sheriff's doctrine so easily. He re-life, in a situation somewhat similar to that which I have minded her, that if she used her tongue with so much already described. license, she must expose herself to suspicions, and that should “ I had been on a pleasure voyage with some friends coincidences happen to irritate ber neighbours, she might around the north coast of Scotland, and in that conrse had suffer harm at a time when there was no one to protect her. arrived in the salt-water lake under the castle of Dunvegan, Fle therefore requested her to be more cautious in her lan- whose turrets, situated upon a frowning rock, rise immeguage, for her own sake, professing, at the same time, his diately above the waves of the loch. As most of the party, belief that her words and intentions were perfectly barm- and I myself in particular, chanced to be well known to the less, and that he had no apprebension of being hurt by her, Laird of Macleod, we were welcomed to the castle with let her wish her worst to him. She was rather more angry Highland hospitality, and glad to find ourselves in polished than pleased at the well-meaning sheriff's scepticisin. . I society, after a cruise of some duration. The most modern would be laith to wish ony ill either to you or yours, sir,' part of the castle was founded in the days of James VI. ; she said ; ‘fur I kenna how it is, but something aye comes the more ancient is referred to a period whose birth tradiafter my words when I am ill-guided, and speak over fast.' tion notes not.' Until the present Macleod connected with In short, she was obstinate in claiming an intiuence over a drawbridge the site of the castle with the mainkand of the destiny of others by words and wishes, which might Skye, the access must have been extremely difficult. for have in other times conveyed her to the stake; for which deed, so much yreater was the regard paid to security thar her expressions, their consequences, and her disposition to to convenience, that in former times the only access to the insist upon their efficacy, would certainly of old bave inade mansion al'ose through a vaulted cavern in a rock, up which