« PoprzedniaDalej »
in the stern of the boat, as if listening to some distant sound, and scanning at the same time the changed aspect of the heavens. “I fear these sudden squalls,” said Billy, quietly, “much more than I do the changing quicksands. For the one we may be prepared, for the other we cannot."
The wind was now hushed into a deceitful calm, the sails flapped ominously on the creaking masts, the sky grew dark and troubled, and the low moan of the distant sea, mingled with the mournful cry of the seagull, fell heavily on the ear.
Squalls ahead !” cried Tom, from the prow, and instantly all eyes were directed to a dark lowering cloud, which every moment increased its threatening aspect, till the black ripple on the water forewarned us of the coming tempest.
“Steady, boys, steady," cried Billy. “Quick, furl the sails, and I shall lay her more to leeward. The wind is rising, but there is no danger."
“There is danger," Billy whispered in my ear. “ When the lurch comes cling fast to me, Jim."
Scarcely were the words uttered when the swell of the water shook the timbers of our little craft, and the squall burst in merciless rage over her, tearing into tatters her tiny sails, and capsizing her in an instant into the trough of the sea !
The salt brine gurgled in my throat,
Their skin all so pure and silvery white,
I awoke. Where? On the lowly bed of a little cottage, on the southern banks of the Esk, and attended by my shivering and anxious shipmates. The truth at once dawned upon me, and I essayed to speak; but for some time was unable to articulate.
At last I cried—“Where is Billy Dickson ?" No answer being returned, I carefully scrutinised each anxious face to read the truth, if possible, in each expression, but not being satisfied I rose, and staggered feebly towards a little group who seemed intently gazing on some object which, apparently, deeply interested them.
And there—stretched on a lowly couch—lay Billy Dickson, his garments drenched with brine, and his hair dishevelled
yet so natural and life-like, that with great rapture I exclaimed
“How happy I am our dear Billy is safe.” “He is safe, I trust, in one respect," said an elderly cottar
“ but I fear" “Fear what ?" I interrupted impetuously. “He is dead," was the reply. “Dead !” I cried. “Dear Billy Dickson dead ?" And I
!I gazed on his calm expressive countenance, the sweet smile on his lip, and the clear lustre in his eye, and exclaimed with tears of joy in my eyes
“You mock me-he is not dead," and I eagerly grasped his hand in mine.
It was damp and clammy to the touch. I pressed it with greater warmth ; but oh! how cold, cold, this last pressure, sending a withering and chilling thrill to my innermost heart, never, never to be forgotten, for this was my first contact with death!
The details of the catastrophe are few, and soon told.
Capsized in the storm, our cries were heard by those on board the coal sloop, which we were so anxious to outsail. They bore down with all speed to the scene, and all were rescued from a watery grave.
Poor Billy, however, never rallied, and by the time the shore was reached his spirit had fled to another and a happier sphere.
Such were my first impressions of Death.
Lo ! princely mansion, hall and tower,
SKIRTING the basin of Montrose are the rich alluvial lands of Kinnaird, and after a pleasant drive of an hour, we enter the gates of Kinnaird Castle, the princely residence of the Earls of Southesk.
The lands which form the territorial earldom of Southesk extend from the basin of Montrose on the east to the western extremity of Monrommon Moor on the west, a distance of fully eight miles. The southern division of the Kinnaird estates comprehends the lands of Baldovie, Fullerton, Bonayton, part of Carcary, Upper and Lower Fithie, Bolsham, Kinnell, and others, comprehending the lands of Baldovie on the east, to the parish of Kinnell on the south-west and is in length seven and a half miles. The northern division comprises the portion north of the river South Esk, and extends from Balwyllo on the east to Brechin on the west.
The early history of the family—according to Mr Fraser to whose antiquarian researches I have in the composition of this chapter been greatly indebted—is involved in much obscurity, owing in a great measure to the destruction of the charters and records of Kinnaird by the burning of the mansionhouse of Kinnaird after the battle of Brechin in the year 1452; and again suffering from the confusion of the times, having been dispersed on the forfeiture of the fifth Earl in 1715, when the family papers were taken possession of by the Commissioners on the forfeited estate of Southesk.
Sufficient evidence, however, has been preserved in a Charter by King David II.-without date, but probably granted in 1358--confirming a donation made by the then deceased Walter Maule, to John de Balinhard—afterwards de Carne de -of the lands of Carnegie, to prove that four generations of the family bore the surname of Balinhard. In the county
of Forfar, there are at least three places of the name of Balinhard ; one of these is Balinhard, or Bonhard, in the parish of Arbirlot, another forms part of the estate of Clova, and the third, known as Bonhard, lies in Edzell parish.
The lands of Carnegie from the time of their being first acquired by John de Balinhard, the ancestor of the Carnegies, in the year 1358, continued to form part of the possessions of the family, either in the direct or collateral lines, till they were forfeited in the year 1716. The direct male line of the Carnegies of Carnegie, failed about the year 1530, when the lands became the property of a collateral branch. On the failure of that branch about the end of the sixteenth century, the lands again reverted to the Carnegies of Kinnaird, then the main line.
Three years after the restoration of Charles II., James, the second Earl of Southesk, obtained from His Majesty a Charter dated 3d August 1663, by which the lands of Carnegie and many other lands were erected into a free barony, to be called the barony of Carnegie in all time coming.
After the lands of Carnegie were forfeited in 1716, they remained for a considerable number of years in other hands, but in the year 1763, they were purchased by Sir James Carnegie of Pittarrow, the heir male of the family. He, however, retained them only for a very short time, having almost immediately exchanged them with the Earl of Panmure for other lands adjacent to the principal residence of Kinnaird.
Duthac of Carnegie, second son of John de Carnegie, who held the lands of Carnegie, was the first of that family who