Obrazy na stronie

Evening. At dusk, I went alone to 'the ruins gray' of 'fair Melrose.' The cicerone, (a son of the 'honest Johnny Bower,' who escorted Mr. Irving there,) has the history of the Abbey and the Lay of the Last Minstrel all by heart; and he repeated several passages fluently and feelingly, as he guided me through the ruins. We stood on the tomb of Michael Scott, which William of Deloraine so valorously explored at midnight. A wizard figure' is carved on it. We trod on the graves of the Douglas and of the heart of the Bruce. One window only remains entire; indeed the whole of this once splendid fabric is in ruins; but the very ruins are beautiful; they are just in the state to be most interesting; and the specimens of ornamental stone work which yet survive, are the admiration of those skilled in such matters. The sculptured hand holding a boquet, is, as Lockhart remarks, most exquisite. It is wonderful to me, that so much perfection and taste in architecture should have existed at the time these cathe. drals and abbeys were built. It would be difficult in these days even to raise the funds for an edifice of this extent and magnificence.

I was not sure, until my guide told me, that Melrose was the Monastery' of the novel. Here, then, Abbott Boniface, Father Eustace, and their two hundred brethren,' counted their beads, and feasted on venison. A mile distant, is the bridge over the Tweed, and the place where the white lady' frightened the Sacristan. Glendearg is three miles farther, near the 'banks of Allan Water.'

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Melrose Abbey.

Midnight. In order to be in the fashion, I have just been again to see

'Fair Melrose aright, By the pale moonlight,'*


or rather by starlight, for there is no moon now. It is truly an excellent time for visiting such a place. I was quite alone, and all was still as death. Not even

"The distant Tweed was heard to rave,

Or the owlet to hoot o'er the dead man's grave."

The flapping of the night-birds' wings on the towers was the only sound. I walked round the venerable pile, (which is now almost obscured, on the village side, by a cluster of unromantic cottages,) and found myself in the grave-yard, under the noble oriel window of the chancel. A fine scene and hour is this for a believer in ghosts! But what a place it is to cogitate in!

Tuesday. I have spent the whole forenoon at Abbottsford! Is not that saying enough? It is easy to understand the feeling which prompts one to say nothing, when it is so impossible to express the thrilling delight or the thousand associations which a place like this calls up. But there is no place like this. It is unique in its situation and beauty; it stands alone, in every point of view; a hallowed shrine, to pilgrims of all nations, for ages to


It was a fine clear morning-the air as bracing and

* I was told that Scott himself never saw Melrose by moonlight. He had a moonlight picture of it, which I saw at Abbottsford.

pure as that of our favorite Brattleboro', (Vt.) a place which Melrose resembles somewhat in its situation and appearance. **** I set off after breakfast, and had a charming ride of two miles over the hills and dales which the poet was wont to frequent, the Tweed being now and then in view, until the turrets of the house, or castle, as you please, are distinguishable amidst a grove, near the banks of the river. The building is then lost sight of, until you arrive at the very gate or as a Frenchman says, vous tombez sur le chateau, which is apprcached by a circular carriage-path through the grove. The arched gateway is very handsome, and is substantially built, as is the whole edifice, of a native gray stone. The house cannot be mistaken; the architecture is so quaint and unique, and yet, on the whole, so pretty and even im. posing, and the pictures of it are so accurate, that it looked quite familiar. I was admitted by the solitary tenant, who acts as housekeeper and cicerone, for the remainder of the family are now scattered abroad. The entrance hall carries you back, as it were, to the days of chivalry : it is just such a place as you would suppose the author of 'Marmion' and Ivanhoe' would contrive. Blazoned shields and armor of the knights of old; gothic windows of painted glass, and curiosities and relics innumerable, are arranged in this 'most picturesque of apartments.' Thence crossing a vestibule, in which are figures of grim warriors in armor,' I found myself in the study—the sanctum sanctorum of the author of Waverley,' and in the very chair in which he wrote. The books and furniture in this and


the other apartments remain in statu quo as the poet left them. There is a melancholy air about these now silent and deserted halls which every one must feel: even the cicerone seemed impressed with it. As an Edinburgh lady, of a party here with me, remarked: How differently one regards this and Newstead! There we may be interested, but here, every thing is venerated. Scott left no poison for his fellow men: his works may be read by old and young, both with pleasure and profit.'


Adjoining the study is a closet in the northwest tower, where is preserved the last coat Scott wore, together with his arms, swords, etc., neatly arranged. Next, we enter the library, the largest and most splendid apartment, where, with other things elsewhere described, is a fine bust of Scott, by Chantrey-the best likeness, it is said, ever taken. I should like to spend a month in that library. What treasures there are on those shelves!-the rarest and choicest gems of the bibliographer, and presentation. copies from authors, all over the world, for the last thirty years. We proceeded to the drawing-room, which contains some beautiful ebony chairs, presented to Scott by George IV.; a copy of the Warwick Vase, and some fine paintings; next, to the breakfast-room, looking toward the Tweed on one side, and the Yarrow and Ettrick, famed in song, on the other. Here are beautiful drawings by Turner and Thompson, a fine oil painting of Wolfe's Craig, (Bride of Lammermoor,) etc. Then we passed to the dining-room, where are several fine pictures, and to Miss Anne Scott's room, as it was when she died. The

book-cases in it are filled chiefly with poetry and ro mances. In the armory I saw Rob Roy's gun, and had my hand in his purse; Bonaparte's pistols, taken at Waterloo; Hofer's blunderbuss; the work-box of Mary, queen of Scots, and many similar rare matters, all tastefully arranged and labelled. Most of the furniture, and the ceiling in the various rooms, are of rich carved oak, for which Scott seems to have had a particular fancy. I was taken, by special favor, to the chambers, in all of which are curious and interesting paintings. Indeed, every part of this abode of romance is a museum in itself, and every article has a legend or a history. Miss Scott's bed-room looks into the front inclosure, but Sir Walter's commands the Tweed and landscape for several miles. In the dressing-room of the latter, is a curious old oaken cabinet, containing human skulls, among others Michael Scott's, taken from his tomb in the Abbey. I explored every room up stairs and down, and most of them twice. It is idle, however, to attempt giving an account of all I was shownsuch as Ralph Erskine's pulpit; a chair made of the wood of the house where Sir William Wallace was betrayed, with an inscription to Scott; a lion-skin sent from Africa; bamboo from India; the keys and door of the Tolbooth, (Heart of Mid-Lothian ;') ancient armor, swords, etc.; the urn containing bones brought from Greece, and presented to Scott by Lord Byron, when he repented of the sweeping attack in the English Bards, and courted the friendship of his great contemporary. The letter accompanying this gift was affixed to it in the library, and stolen

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