P E O P L E'S   E D I T I O N S.

P O P U L A R   R H Y M E S,








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Heading: Messrs Chambers's Publications, original published size 8.5cm wide by 0.9cm high.

C H A M B E R S ' S


THE " INFORMATION FOR THE PEOPLE," published in 1833-4, consisted of fifty sheets in large quarto, each (with a few exceptions) containing a summary of a particular branch of human knowledge. The large sale which this work continued from year to year to experience as a volume, suggested to the Editors the propriety of throwing it into the more convenient form of royal octavo, and at the same time extending and improving its contents.
      The issue of
AN EXTENDED AND IMPROVED EDITION OF THE " INFORMATION FOR THE PEOPLE," was therefore commenced on the first Saturday of January 1841, with the design that it should continue, at the rate of a sheet every Saturday, till the work was completed. Being now (December 1842) brought to a conclusion, it consists of 100 sheets, or double the former number, and treats more than double the former number of subjects. The articles are in many instances re-written, and in all so much improved, that the work, considering at the same time its being so much extended, may, without much impropriety, be described as one altogether new. The New Series has also the advantage of an arrangement of subjects in some degree accordant with their natural order, and it is more extensively illustrated by Wood Engravings. Completed in two volumes, containing 1600 double-columned pages, at the price of twelve shillings and sixpence (or 16s. handsomely bound in cloth along with titles and tables of contents), it forms A COMPREHENSIVE POOR MAN'S CYCLOPÆDIA, AND IS PERHAPS THE MOST STRIKING EXAMPLE YET GIVEN OF THE POWERS OF THE PRESS IN DIFFUSING USEFUL KNOWLEDGE.


 1. Astronomy, or System of the Uni-
 2. Geology, or Structure of the Earth.
 3. Geography—Descriptive and Poli-
 4. Physical History of Man.
 5. Ancient History—Egypt—Arabia.
 6. History of the Jews—Palestine.
 7. History of Greece and Rome.
 8. History of the Middle Ages.
 9. History of Great Britain and Ire-
10. History of Great Britain and Ire-
11. History of Great Britain and Ire-
12. Constitution and Resources of the
       British Empire.
13. Description of England.
14. Description of London.
15. Description of Scotland.
16. Description of Ireland.
17. Emigration to British American
18. Emigration to the United States.
19. Emigration to Australia.
20. Emigration to Van Diemen's Land
       and New Zealand.
21. Description of the United States.
22. Description of South America.
23. Description of the West Indies.
24. Description of the East Indies.
25. China and the Tea Trade.
26. Ocean — Maritime Discovery — Na-
27. The Whale—Whale Fisheries.
28. Conveyance—Roads—Railways.
29. Zoology—Vertebrata.
30.    –––      Vertebrata.
31.    –––      Vertebrata.
vertical rule 32. Zoology—Articulata.
33.    –––      Articulata—Mollusca.
34.    –––      Mollusca—Radiata.
35. Account of the Human Body.
36. Vegetable Physiology—Botany.
37. Natural Theology.
38. History of the Bible—Christianity.
39. Private Duties of Life.
40. Public and Social Duties of Life.
41. Life and Maxims of Franklin.
42. Preservation of Health.
43. Commerce—Money—Banks.
44. History and Nature of Laws.
45. Political Economy.
46. Population—Poor-Laws—Life-
47. Pagan and Mahometan Religions.
48. Superstitions.
49. Domestic Economy—Cookery.
50. Proverbs and Old Sayings.
       Title and Index to Volume I.

51. Natural Philosophy.
52. Mechanics—Machinery.
53. Hydrostatics and Pneumatics.
54. Optics—Acoustics.
55. Chemistry.
56. Chemistry applied to the Arts.
57. Electricity and Galvanism.
58. Meteorology—the Weather.
59. Phrenology.
60. Phrenology—concluded.
61. Principles of Civil Government.
62. Language.
63. English Grammar.
64. Logic.
65. Education.
66. Drawing and Perspective.
67. Arithmetic—Algebra.
68. Geometry.
vertical rule 69. Popular Statistics.
70. Social Economics of the Industrious
71. Agriculture.
72. Improvement of Waste Lands—
       Spade Husbandry.
73. The Kitchen Garden.
74. The Flower Garden.
75. The Fruit Garden.
76. Arboriculture.
77. The Horse.
78. Cattle and Dairy Husbandry.
79. Sheep.
80. Pigs, Goats, Rabbits, Poultry, Cage-
       Birds, &c.
81. Bees.
82. Dogs—Field Sports.
83. Angling.
84. Out-of-Door Recreations—Gymnas-
       tics, Swimming, Cricket, Ball,
       Golf, Curling, &c.
85. In-Door Amusements—Backgam-
       mon, Chess, Draughts, Whist, &c.
86. Foreign Costumes.
87. British Costumes.
88. Chronology—Time-Measurers.
89. Key to the Calendar.
90. Printing–Engraving–Lithography.
91. Resources of Humanity—Useful
       Receipts—The Toilet.
92. Lighting—Heating—Ventilation.
93. Architecture.
94. Dictionary of Classical Terms.
95. Dictionary of Scientific Terms.
96. The Steam Engine.
97. Mines—Metals—Coal.
98. Miscellaneous Manufactures.
99. Music.
100. Music Concluded.
       Title and Index to Volume II.
Any of the numbers can be supplied at 1½d. each.

Published by W. and R. CHAMBERS, Edinburgh ; W. S. ORR and COMPANY, London ; W. CURRY, Jun. and Co., Dublin ;
and sold by all booksellers who usually supply Chambers's Journal.

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P O P U L A R   R H Y M E S,








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P R E F A C E.

HE purpose of this work is to supply a presumed desideratum in popular antiquities. The various collections of Percy, Evans, Scott, and others, have now probably given to the world nearly all that is worth preserving of the songs and ballads of our island ; and this section of British traditionary poetry has been received amongst the cultivated intellects of the country with a degree of favour which could not have been dreamt of in the days of Milton and Dryden. Careless unaffected graces, simple pathos and humour, the total absence of all those marks of the chisel of the literary workman, and of all those strainings after effect, which mar the merits of so much elegant literature, have secured for these wildings of the national intellect an affectionate admiration and regard, of which many modern writers of native and acquired skill might well be envious.

      Reared amidst friends to whom popular poetry furnished a daily enjoyment, and led by a tendency of my own mind to delight in whatever is quaint, whimsical, and old, I formed the wish, at an early period of life, to complete, as I considered it, the collection of the traditionary verse of Scotland, by gathering together and publishing all that remained of a multitude of rhymes and short snatches of verse, applicable to places, families, natural objects, amusements, &c., wherewith, not less than by song and ballad, the cottage fireside was amused in days gone past, while yet printed books were only familiar to comparatively few. This task was executed as well as circumstances would permit, and a portion of the " Popular Rhymes of Scotland" was published in 1826. Other objects have since occupied me, generally of a graver kind ; yet, amidst them all, I have never lost my wish to complete the publication of these relics of the old natural literature of my native country.

      When now about to perfect this wish, I cannot help feeling anxious that the articles collected may be viewed in a proper light. It is to be observed, first of all, that they are, in most instances, the production of rustic wits, in some the whimsies of mere children, and originally were designed for no higher purpose than to convey the wisdom or the humours of the cottage, to soothe the murmurs of the cradle, or enliven the sports of the village-green. The reader is therefore not to expect here any thing profound, or sublime, or elegant, or affecting. But, if he can so far upon occasion undo his mature man, as to enter again into the almost meaningless frolics of children—if to him the absence of high-wrought literary grace is compensated by a simplicity coming direct from nature—if to him there be a poetry in the very consideration that such a thing, though a trifle, was perhaps the same trifle to many human beings like himself hundreds of years ago, and has, times without number, been trolled or chanted by hearts light as his own, long since resolved into dust—then it is possible that he may find something in this volume which he will consider worthy of his attention.

      In one respect only can the volume have the least claim upon a less gentle class of readers. In some instances, a remarkable resemblance is made out between rhymes prevalent over Scotland and others which exist in England and Germany ; thus adding a curious illustration with regard to the common origin of these nations, as well as showing at how early a period the ideas of these rhymes had originated. In some instances, more direct proofs are adduced of the great antiquity of even the simplest and most puerile of these popular verses. I greatly regret that it has not been in my power to investigate the subject of kindred foreign rhymes further ; but it may be hoped that the present volume, showing what are those which exist, or have recently existed, in Scotland, will enable inquirers in France, Holland, Germany, and other countries containing a Teutonic population, to make out such tallies as may exist in those countries, and thus complete the investigation in a satisfactory manner.

DINBURGH, November 24, 1841.

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RHYMES ON PLACES, - - - - - - - - 5
POPULAR REPROACHES, - - - - - - - - 21
FAMILY CHARACTERISTICS, - - - - - - - - 27
SLOGANS, - - - - - - - - 30
RHYMES OF THE NURSERY, - - - - - - - - 44
FIRESIDE NURSERY STORIES, - - - - - - - - 51
MISCELLANEOUS RHYMES, - - - - - - - - 72
SUPPLEMENT TO THE RHYMES, - - - - - - - - 74

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NATURAL objects of a conspicuous kind, as mountains and rivers, attract the attention of the rudest people, and probably are the first which receive names in the infancy of a newly settled country. There is a disposition in Scotland, and probably in other countries, to work up the names of such objects in verse, sometimes with associated circumstances, but often with little besides a bare enumeration or list. Thus arises a large class of what may be called Topographical Rhymes. In some instances, the ideas introduced are of a striking and poetical nature ; and it is worthy of remark, that, even where the names alone are given in the versified list, there is usually an euphony in the structure of the verse, which makes it tell on the simple ear like a strain of one of our pastoral melodies. In other instances, these rhymes are curious, on account of the grotesque words which they introduce to notice. It would almost appear as if the composers of such verses had addressed themselves on some occasions to select a set of the most whimsical names of places and men in their vicinity, for the amusement of strangers.
      Another section of our topographical rhymes contain allusions to events of a public or private nature, or are predictions of events expected yet to come. Others relate to things for which the places were remarkable.

      The Tweed is, in general, a broad, shallow, clear and rapid river, not ill-provided with fords. Its English tributary, the Till, is, on the contrary, narrow, deep, and slow, with few or no fords. The comparatively greater danger of the Till to those attempting to cross it is expressed in the following lines, which, when the editor first heard them pronounced by the deep voice of Sir Walter Scott, seemed to him to possess a remarkable solemnity, amounting to something like poetry :—
Tweed said to Till,
" What gars ye rin sae still ?"
Till said to Tweed,
   " Though ye rin wi' speed,
       And I rin slaw,
   Yet where ye droun ae man,
       I droun twa !"

      Near the sea-side village of Eyemouth, in Berwickshire, is a promontory marked with a succession of grassy mounds, the remains of a fort built there in the regency of Mary of Lorraine. In the following rhyme, a number of places are represented as visible from the fort, but here fact is not strictly adhered to :—
I stood upon Eyemouth fort,
   And guess ye what I saw ?
Fairnieside and Flemington,
   Newhouses and Cocklaw ;
The fairy fouk o' Fosterland,
   The witches o' Edincraw,
The rye-riggs o' Reston—
   But Dunse dings a' !

      There is a variation as follows:—
The fairy fouk o' Fosterland,
   The witches o' Edincraw,
And the rye-kail o' Reston,
   Gar'd a' the dogs dee.

Fosterland once existed in the parish of Bunkle as a small village ; but even its vestiges are not now visible upon the brown moor where it once stood. Edincraw, properly Auchincraw, is an estate in the vicinity of Fosterland, as is Reston also. The rye-kail alluded to must have been a broth made chiefly of rye, which grain, it is well known, is sometimes so much tainted as to be poisonous. The particular circumstance upon which the rhyme is founded has not come to our knowledge.

St Abb, St Helen, and St Bey,
They a' built kirks which to be nearest the sea—
St Abb's, upon the nabs ;
   St Helen's, on the lea ;
St Ann's, upon Dunbar sands,
   Stands nearest to the sea.

      St Abb, St Helen, and St Ann, were, according to the country people, three princesses, the daughters and heiresses of a king of Northumberland. Being very pious, and taking a disgust at the world, they resolved to employ their dowries in the erection of churches, and the rest of their lives in devotion. They all tried which should find a situation for their buildings nearest to the sea, and St Ann succeeded—her church being built upon a level space close to the water-mark, while St Abb placed her structure upon the points, or nabs, of a high rock overhanging the German Ocean, and St Helen pitched hers upon a plain near, but not exactly bordering upon the shore. It is difficult to say how much truth there may be in this legend. St Abb was certainly a Northumbrian princess of the seventh century ; but the other two persons, one of whom undergoes a change of name in the rhyme, may have been imaginary.

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      Some low grassy mounds, which may still be traced on the top of St Abb's promontory, are all that remain of her church. Of St Helen's some part of the walls yet stands. The church of St Ann, becoming a parochial place of worship for the burgh of Dunbar, to which it is contiguous, existed till a recent period when a new fane was erected on the same spot.

Huntly Wood—the wa's is down,
Bassendean and Barrastown,
Heckspeth wi' the yellow hair,
Gordon gowks for evermair. *

  Gowk—the cuckoo, a term for a foolish person.

      The parish of Gordon, in Berwickshire, was the original seat of the family of the same name, which has for so many centuries been conspicuous in the north. Huntly and Huntly Wood are the names of farms in this parish ; and it would appear that, when the Gordon family went northward, they transferred that of Huntly to their new settlement, where it now marks a large town, and gives a title to the representative of the family. The above rhyme is little more than an unusually euphonious list of places in the parish of Gordon, inclusive of Huntly Wood. The appellation bestowed in it upon the people of Gordon probably took its origin in the extreme simplicity which characterised their manners and modes of life till a recent period. Bassendean is the name of a suppressed parish now connected with Gordon.

      The common people throughout the whole of Scotland, even in the Hebrides and Orkneys, look back with veneration to a seer of old times, whom they variously designate True Thomas and Thomas the Rhymer. They preserve a great number of prophetic sayings of this person, chiefly expressed in rhyme ; and few remarkable events take place, of the kind which most affect the popular mind, as the death of a king or a " dear year," without some appropriate saying of Thomas coming into notice on the occasion.
      There is tolerable authority for both the existence of this personage and his place and time. He appears to have been a gentleman of consideration in Berwickshire, in the latter part of the thirteenth century. In the chartulary of the Trinity-house of Soltra, under 1299, occurs an entry of the resignation by Thomas of Ercildoun, son and heir of " Thomas Rymour de Ercildoun," of a tenement of land belonging to him in that village. This Thomas Rymour was probably the person whom invariable tradition at Earlstoun represents as the prophet True Thomas. If such be the case, he must have deceased at some period not long prior to 1299. The people of Earlstoun further represent his real name as Thomas Learmont. They point to a ruined tower near the village, which they say was his property and residence, and to a spot in the parish churchyard, with which his connexion is denoted by an inscription on the church wall—
Auld Rhymer's race
Lies in this place.
It is also to be observed, that Barbour, in his Life of Bruce, written about 1370, speaks of Thomas of Ercildoun's prophecies, and that Fordun, who wrote not long after Barbour, also alludes to him. From Fordun, Archbishop Spottiswood derives the following story respecting Thomas :—
      On the day before the death of Alexander III. (1285), " he [Thomas] did foretel the same to the Earl of March, saying, ' That before the next day at noon, such a tempest should blow as Scotland had not felt for many years before.' The next morning, the day being clear, and no change appearing in the air, the nobleman did challenge Thomas of his saying, calling him an impostor. He replied, that noon was not yet passed. About which time a post came to advertise the earl of the king his sudden death. ' Then,' said Thomas, ' this is the tempest I foretold ; and so it shall prove to Scotland.' Whence or how he had this knowledge," adds the sagacious historian, " can hardly be affirmed ; but sure it is, that he did divine and answer truly of many things to come."
      During the fourteenth, fifteenth, and sixteenth centuries, to get up a prophecy in the name of Thomas the Rhymer appears to have been found a good stroke of policy on many occasions. Thus was his authority employed to countenance the views of Edward III. against Scottish independence, to favour the ambitious views of the Duke of Albany in the minority of James V., and to sustain the spirits of the nation under the harassing invasions of Henry VIII. A small volume, containing a collection of the rhymes thus put into circulation, was published by Andro Hart in Edinburgh, in 1615.
      The common tradition respecting Thomas is, that he was carried off in early life to Fairyland, where he acquired all the knowledge which made him afterwards so famous. There is an old ballad which describes him as meeting the Queen of Faëry on Huntly Bank, a spot now included in the estate of Abbotsford, and as accompanying her fantastic majesty to that country, the journey to which is described with some sublimity :—
O they rade on, and farther on,
    And they waded through rivers aboon the knee,
And they saw neither sun nor moon,
    But they heard the roaring o' the sea.

It was mirk, mirk night, and there was nae stern light,
    And they waded through red blude aboon the knee ;
For a' the blude that's shed on earth,
    Rins through the springs o' that countrie.

      At the end of seven years, Thomas is said to have returned to Earlstoun, to enlighten and astonish his countrymen by his prophetic powers. His favourite place of vaticination is said to have been at the Eildon Tree, an elevated spot on the opposite bank of the Tweed. At length, as he was one day making merry with his friends at a house in Earlstoun, a person came running in, and told, with marks of fear and astonishment, that a hart and hind had left the neighbouring forest, and were composedly and slowly parading the street of the village. The Rhymer instantly rose, with the declaration that he had been long enough there, and, following the animals to the wild, was never more seen. It is alleged that he was now reclaimed by the fairy queen, in virtue of a contract entered into during his former visit to her dominions. It is highly probable that both the first and the second disappearances of Thomas were natural incidents, to which popular tradition has given an obscure and supernatural character. *

    *   It happens that this conjecture derives force from a particular circumstance connected with the history of the Rhymer. Sir Walter Scott concludes an account of Thomas in the Border Minstrelsy, by mentioning that " the veneration paid to his dwelling-place even attached itself to a person, who, within the memory of man, chose to set up his residence in the ruins of the Rhymer's tower. The name of this person was Murray, a kind of herbalist, who, by dint of some knowledge of simples, the possession of a musical clock, an electrical machine, and a stuffed alligator, added to a supposed communication with Thomas the Rhymer, lived for many years in very good credit as a wizard." This account, which the author seems to have taken up from popular hearsay, refers to Mr Patrick Murray, an enlightened and respectable medical practitioner, of good family connexions, talents, and education, as he sufficiently proves to us by the fact of his having been on intimate terms with the elegant Earl of Marchmont. With other property, this gentleman possessed the tower of Thomas of Ercildoun, which was then a comfortable mansion,  
p.7 /   and where he pursued various studies of a philosophical kind, not very common in Scotland during the eighteenth century. He had made a considerable collection of natural objects, among which was an alligator, and, being fond of mechanical contrivances, in which he was himself an adept, he had not only a musical clock and an electrical machine, but a piece of mechanism connected with a weathercock, by which he could tell the direction of the wind without leaving his chamber. This, with the aid of his barometer, enabled him to guess at the weather as he sat in company, and no doubt served to impress the ignorant with an idea of his possessing supernatural powers. Such, we have been assured by a relative of Mr Murray, was the real person whom the editor of the Border Minstrelsy—meaning, of course, no harm, but relying upon popular tradition—has described in such opposite terms. When we find a single age, and that the latest and most enlightened, so strangely distort and mystify the character of a philosophical country surgeon, can we doubt that five hundred years have played still stranger tricks with the history and character of Thomas the Rhymer ?


      The only other circumstance we are called upon here to notice, is the claim which has been put forward by Sir Walter Scott for Thomas of Ercildoun, as the author of the metrical romance of Sir Tristrem. We must admit that Mr Park has shown very strong reasons for doubting that the Rhymer is entitled to this honour.
      Those rhymes of True Thomas which bear most appearance of being genuine (that is, really uttered by him), are generally of a melancholy and desponding cast, such as might well be expected to proceed from a man of a fine turn of mind, who felt himself and his country on the verge of great calamities. One of these melancholy sayings referred to the prospects of his own household—

The hare shall kittle on my hearth-stane,
And there never will be a Laird Learmont again.
This emphatic image of desolation is said by the people of Earlstoun to have been realised within the memory of man, and at a period long subsequent to the termination of the race of Learmont.
      Another relates to a place in his immediate neighbourhood—
A horse shall gang on Carrolside brae,
Till the girth gaw his side in twae.
We have here, apparently, a foreboding of some terrible famine which he apprehended as likely to arise from the war of the disputed succession. He said also,
The burn of Breid
Sall rin fu' reid ;
—a mysterious allusion to the bloodshed at Bannockburn, bannock being the chief bread of Scotland in those days.
      The following is perhaps not ancient, but it expresses that gloomy fear of coming evil which marks so many of his rhymes :—
When the white ox comes to Edinburgh cors,
Every man may tak his horse.
Similar in spirit is—
Atween Craik-cross and Eildon tree,
Is a' the safety there shall be.
The space here specified is about thirty miles in extent. The rhyme came much into notice during the early years of the French revolutionary war, when the less enlightened class of people in rural districts laboured under the most agonising apprehensions of invasion. In the south of Scotland, this prophecy then obtained universal credence ; and the tract of country alluded to was well surveyed and considered by many wealthy persons, anxious to save their goods and lives, as the place to which they would probably fly for refuge, "in case of the French coming !"  The danger of invasion having long passed away like an unburst storm-cloud, leaving serenity and sunshine behind, it is now almost impossible for the youth of the present generation to imagine the state of the public mind at the time referred to ; yet, in a time of peace and prosperity, it may not be unseasonable to remind the aged, and to inform the young, of a period when Wealth, holding bank-notes as the dust of the earth, busied himself in collecting and concealing well-marked crown and half-crown pieces—when Old Age prayed that he might be permitted to resign his breath in peace, ere he met death in a more dreadful form—and when Maternal Affection clasped her infant to her breast with more than ordinary solicitude, and thought how, by sacrificing herself, she might purchase safety to her beloved charge.
      The following refers to the tree from beneath the shade of which the Rhymer delivered his predictions :
At Eildon-tree if you sall be,
A brig ower Tweed you there may see.
" This rhyme seems to have been founded in that insight into futurity possessed by most men of a sound and combining judgment. The spot in question commands an extensive prospect of the course of the river ; and it was easy to see that, when the country became in the least degree improved, a bridge would be somewhere thrown over the stream. In fact, you now see no fewer than three bridges from the same elevated situation."—Minst. Scot. Bord. iii. p. 210.
      Another verse, referring to the future improvements of the country, may be taken as even a more curious specimen of the same sort of wisdom. Learmont had the sagacity to discover that the ground would be more generally cultivated at some future period than it was in his own time ; but, also knowing that population and luxury would increase in proportion, he was enabled to assure the posterity of the poor, that their food would not consequently increase in quantity. His words were—
The waters sall wax, the woods sall wene,
Hill and moss sall be a' torn in ;
    But the banno' 'ill be na the braider.
      Of rhymes foreboding evil, one of the most remarkable is a malediction against the old persecuting family of Home of Cowdenknowes—a place in the immediate neighbourhood of Thomas's castle :—
Vengeance, vengeance !  When and where ?
Upon the house of Cowdenknowes, now and evermair !
This anathema, awful as the cry of blood, has been accomplished in the extinction of the family, and the transference of the property to another race. A rhyme to the effect that,
Between Seton and the sea,
Mony a man shall die that day,
is introduced into Patten's account of the Duke of Somerset's expedition, printed in 1548. "This battell and felde," says the writer, alluding to Pinky, "the Scottes and we are not yet agreed how it shall be named. We cal it Muskelborough felde, because that is the best towne (and yet bad inough) nigh the place of our meeting. Sum of them call it Seton felde (a towne thear nie too), by means of a blynde prophecy of theirs, which is this or sum suche toye—Betwene Seton and the sey, many a man shall dye that dey." It is also incorporated in the long, irregular, and mystical poems which were published as the prophecies of Thomas, in 1615. It may be said, without much stretch of the record, to have been fulfilled by the battle of Preston, in September 1745. To compensate, however, for this lucky shot, it is certain that many rhymes professedly by our hero were promulgated in consequence of particular events. Of this character is—
There shall a stone wi' Leader come,
That'll make a rich father, but a poor son ;

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an allusion to the supposed limited advantage of the process of liming. The Highlanders have also found, since the recent changes of tenantry in their country, that Thomas predicted

That the teeth of the sheep shall lay the plough on the shelf.

      One of Thomas's supposed prophecies is of a safer kind—
When Dee and Don shall run in one,
    And Tweed shall run in Tay,
The bonnie water o' Urie
    Shall bear the Bass away.
The Bass is a conical mound rising from the bank of the Urie, in Aberdeenshire ; and we may confidently conclude that it will remain intact by the river, so long as the Tweed and Tay shall continue separate.
      The mention of an Aberdeenshire rhyme reminds us of a very interesting tradition of that country respecting the subject of our memoir. It is said that the walls of Fyvie Castle had stood for seven years and a day, wall-wide, waiting for the arrival of True Tammas, as he is called in Aberdeenshire. At length he suddenly appeared before the fair building, accompanied by a violent storm of wind and rain, which stripped the surrounding trees of their leaves, and shut the castle gates with a loud clash. But while this tempest was raging on all sides it was observed, that, close by the spot where Thomas stood, there was not wind enough to shake a pile of grass, or move a hair of his beard. He denounced his wrath in the following lines:—
Fyvie, Fyvie, thou'se never thrive,
As lang's there's in thee stanes three :
There's ane intill the highest tower,
There's ane intill the ladye's bower,
There's ane aneath the water-yett,
And thir three stanes ye'se never get.
The usual prose comment states that two of these stones have been found, but that the third, beneath the gate leading to the Ythan, or water-gate, has hitherto baffled all search.
      A native of Edinburgh, who in 1825 was seventy-two years of age, informed us, that, when he was a boy, the following prophetic rhyme, ascribed to True Thomas, and so complimentary to the good town, was in vogue :—
York was, London is, and Edinburgh will be,
The biggest o' the three.
In our informant's early days, Edinburgh consisted only of what is now called the Old Town ; and the New Town, though projected, was not then expected ever to reach the extent and splendour which it has since attained. Consequently, it can scarcely be said that the prophecy has been put into circulation after its fulfilment had become a matter of hope or possibility.
      One of the rhymes most popular at Earlstoun, referred to an old thorn-tree which stood near the village. It ran thus:—
This Thorn-tree, as lang as it stands,
Earlstoun sall possess a' her lands.
Now, the lands originally belonging to the community of Earlstoun, have been, in the course of time, alienated piece-meal, till there is scarcely now an acre left. The tree fell during the night, in a great storm which took place in spring 1821 ; and what gave additional weight to the prophecy was, that the principal shopkeepers in the town happened to be then, on account of a tissue of unfortunate circumstances, in a state of bankruptcy.
      The Rhymer is supposed to have attested the infallibility of his predictions, by a couplet to the following effect :—
When the saut gaes abune the meal,
Believe nae mair o' Tammie's tale.
This seems to mean, in plain English that it is just as impossible for the price of the small quantity of salt used in the preparation of " Scotland's homely fare" to exceed the value of the larger quantity of meal required for the same purpose, as for his prophecies to become untrue.
      The following legend, which appeared in the notes to the uniform edition of the Waverley Novels, may properly be introduced at this place :—
      " Now, it chanced many years since, that there lived on the Borders a jolly, rattling horse-cowper, who was remarkable for a reckless and fearless temper, which made him much admired, and a little dreaded, amongst his neighbours. One moonlight night, as he rode over Bowden Moor, on the west side of the Eildon Hills, the scene of Thomas the Rhymer's prophecies, and often mentioned in his story, having a brace of horses along with him which he had not been able to dispose of, he met a man of venerable appearance and singularly antique dress, who, to his great surprise, asked the price of his horses, and began to chaffer with him on the subject. To Canobie Dick, for so shall we call our Border dealer, a chap was a chap, and he would have sold a horse to the devil himself, without minding his cloven hoof, and would have probably cheated Old Nick into the bargain. The stranger paid the price they agreed on, and all that puzzled Dick in the transaction was, that the gold which he received was in unicorns, bonnet-pieces, and other ancient coins, which would have been invaluable to collectors, but were rather troublesome in modern currency. It was gold, however, and therefore Dick contrived to get better value for the coin than he perhaps gave to his customer. By the command of so good a merchant, he brought horses to the same spot more than once ; the purchaser only stipulating that he should always come by night, and alone. I do not know whether it was from mere curiosity, or whether some hope of gain mixed with it, but after Dick had sold several horses in this way, he began to complain that dry bargains were unlucky, and to hint, that since his chap must live in the neighbourhood, he ought, in the courtesy of dealing, to treat him to half a mutchkin.
      ' You may see my dwelling if you will,' said the stranger ; ' but if you lose courage at what you see there, you will rue it all your life.'
      Dickon, however, laughed the warning to scorn, and having alighted to secure his horse, he followed the stranger up a narrow footpath, which led them up the hills to the singular eminence stuck betwixt the most southern and the centre peaks, and called, from its resemblance to such an animal in its form, the Lucken Hare. At the foot of this eminence, which is almost as famous for witch-meetings as the neighbouring windmill of Kippilaw, Dick was somewhat startled to observe that his conductor entered the hill-side by a passage or cavern, of which he himself, though well acquainted with the spot, had never seen or heard.
      ' You may still return,' said his guide, looking ominously back upon him ; but Dick scorned to show the white feather, and on they went. They entered a very long range of stables ; in every stall stood a coal-black horse ; by every horse lay a knight in coal-black armour, with a drawn sword in his hand ; but all were as silent, hoof and limb, as if they had been cut out of marble. A great number of torches lent a gloomy lustre to the hall, which, like those of the Caliph Vathek, was of large dimensions. At the upper end, however, they at length arrived, where a sword and horn lay on an antique table.
      ' He that shall sound that horn and draw that sword,' said the stranger, who now intimated that he was the famous Thomas of Ercildoun, 'shall, if his heart fail him not, be king over all broad Britain. So speaks the tongue that cannot lie. But all depends   p.9 /   on courage, and much on your taking the sword or the horn first.'
      Dick was much disposed to take the sword, but his bold spirit was quailed by the supernatural terrors of the hall, and he thought to unsheath the sword first might be construed into defiance, and give offence to the powers of the mountain. He took the bugle with a trembling hand, and blew a feeble note, but loud enough to produce a terrible answer. Thunder rolled in stunning peals through the immense hall ; horses and men started to life ; the steeds snorted, stamped, grinded their bits, and tossed on high their heads ; the warriors sprung to their feet, clashed their armour, and brandished their swords. Dick's terror was extreme at seeing the whole army, which had been so lately silent as the grave, in uproar, and about to rush on him. He dropped the horn, and made a feeble attempt to seize the enchanted sword ; but at the same moment a voice pronounced aloud the mysterious words—
' Woe to the coward, that ever he was born,
  Who did not draw the sword before he blew the horn !'
      At the same time a whirlwind of irresistible fury howled through the long hall, bore the unfortunate horse-jockey clear out of the mouth of the cavern, and precipitated him over a steep bank of loose stones, where the shepherds found him the next morning, with just breath sufficient to tell his fearful tale, after concluding which he expired.
      This legend, with several variations is found in many parts of Scotland and England ; the scene is sometimes laid in some favourite glen of the Highlands, sometimes in the deep coal-mines of Northumberland and Cumberland, which run so far beneath the ocean. It is also to be found in Reginald Scott's book on Witchcraft, which was written in the sixteenth century. It would be in vain to ask what was the original of the tradition. The choice between the horn and sword may, perhaps, include as a moral, that it is fool-hardy to awaken danger before we have arms in our hands to resist it."

Fair Maiden Lylliard lies under this stane,
Little was her stature, but great was her fame ;
Upon the English louns she laid mony thumps,
And when her legs were cuttit off, she fought upon her stumps.
      " The spot on which the noted battle of Ancrum Moor was fought, is called Lylliard's Edge, from an Amazonian Scottish woman of that name, who is reported, by tradition, to have distinguished herself in the same manner as Squire Widdrington. The old people point out her monument, now broken and defaced. The inscription is said to have been legible within this last century."—Minst. Scot. Bord. iii. 247.

Bilhope braes for bucks and raes,
    Carit-rigs for swine,
And Tarras for a gude bull-trout,
    If it be ta'en in time.
      " An old rhyme, which celebrates the places in Liddesdale *  remarkable for game. The bucks and raes, as well as the swine, are now extinct ; but the good bull-trout is still famous."—Notes to the Lay of the Last Minstrel, 296.

  Carit-rigs are not precisely in, but closely adjacent to Liddesdale.

      The river Tarras, celebrated in the preceding rhyme, traverses a great morass, the Tarras Flow, which was formerly a noted haunt of the predatory clans of Liddesdale, in times of danger, being completely inaccessible to persons unacquainted with the district. The course of the river is as remarkable for its broken and rugged character, as the neighbouring ground is for bleakness and desolation. The borderers expressed its features in their own poetical style :—
Was ne'er ane drown'd in Tarras,
    Nor yet in doubt,
For ere the head wins down,
    The harns are out.
That is to say, no one was ever drowned in Tarras, nor yet in danger of being so, for, ere any one falling into it could be submerged, his brains must have been dashed out upon the rocks.

Annan, Tweed, and Clyde,
Rise a' out o' ae hill side.
Tweed ran, Annan wan,
Clyde fell, and brak its neck ower Corra Linn.
      These three chief rivers of the south of Scotland rise at different sides of one hill, and run in different directions towards the Solway Firth, the German Ocean, and the Atlantic ; the course of the Annan being the shortest, whence, in the rhyme, it is said to win the race. This rhyme prevails all over the south of Scotland, with slight variations.

The Ettrick and the Slitterick,
The Leader and the Feeder,
The Fala and the Gala,
The Ale and the Kale,
The Yod and the Jed,
The Blackater, the Whittater,
The Teviot and the Tweed.

VALE OF MANOR—(Peeblesshire).
There stand three mills on Manor Water,
    A fourth at Posso Cleugh :
Gin heather-bells were corn and bere,
    They wad get grist eneugh.
      In the pastoral vale of Manor there were formerly no fewer than four mills, each belonging to a distinct laird, who bound all his tenants to take their grain thither, according to an oppressive and absurd old practice, known by the phrase thirlage. Since one mill now serves to grind all the grain produced in Manor, even in the present advanced state of agriculture, some idea may be formed of the state of things in regard to the trade of grinding, when there were four rival professors of that useful art to be supported by what now scarcely suffices for one. The people felt, saw, and satirised the thing, in a style highly characteristic, by the above sneering rhyme, which is still popular, though the occasion has long since passed away. The vale of Manor is remarkable for having been the residence of David Ritchie, a deformed and eccentric pauper, whose character and appearance formed the groundwork of the tale entitled " The Black Dwarf."

      Powbate is a large, deep well, on the top of a high hill at Eddlestone, near Peebles, considered a sort of phenomenon by the country people, who believe that it fills and occupies the whole mountain with its vast magazine of waters. The mouth, at the top of the hill, called Powbate Ee, is covered over by a grate, to prevent the sheep from falling into it ; and it is supposed, that if a willow-wand is thrown in, it will be found, some time after, peeled, at the Water-laugh, a small lake at the base of the hill, supposed to com-   p.10 /   municate with Powbate. The hill is expected to break some day, like a bottle, and do a great deal of mischief. A prophecy, said to be by Thomas the Rhymer, and bearing some marks of his style, is cited to support the supposition:—
Powbate, an ye break,
Tak the Moorfoot in your gate—
Moorfoot and Mauldslie,
Huntlycote, a' three,
Five kirks and an abbacie !
Moorfoot, Mauldslie, and Huntlycote, are farms in the immediate neighbourhood of the hill. The kirks are understood to have been those of Temple, Carrington, Borthwick, Cockpen, and Dalkeith ; and the abbacy was that of Newbottle, the destruction of which, however, has been anticipated by another enemy.

      The small stream of Powsail falls into the Tweed a little below a small eminence called Merlin's Grave, near Drumelzier, in Peeblesshire. Whether the prophet or wizard Merlin was buried here or not, Penicuik, who notices both the grave and the rhyme, cannot certify. The following popular version of the rhyme is better than that which he has printed, and, we believe, improved :
When Tweed and Powsail meet at Merlin's Grave,
Scotland and England that day ae king shall have.
Accordingly, it is said, that on the day of King James's coronation as monarch of Great Britain, there was such a flood in both the Tweed and the Powsail, that their waters met at Merlin's Grave. An ingenious friend remarks, that the lines might be originally intended to attest the improbability of the two hostile kingdoms ever being united under one sovereign, and as a means of keeping alive, at least in Scotland, the spirit of disunion. Both the events implied came to pass, it would appear, in the face of probability.

Glenkirk and Glencotha,
The Mains o' Kilbucho,
Blendewan and the Raw,
Mitchellhill and the Shaw ;
There's a hole abune the Thriepland
Would haud them a' !
     The farm-steadings here mentioned lie in the western district of Peeblesshire. The " hole abune the Thriepland" is a hollow in the side of a hill, shaped like a basin, and which stands in rainy weather nearly half full of water. On the upper side of the hollow, there is a cave penetrating the hill, and nearly blocked up with stones and shrubs. This is said to be of considerable extent ;   and, as tradition reports, gave shelter in the persecuting times to the inhabitants of the farms enumerated in the rhyme. Both the hole and the cave are evidently artificial ; but it is probable that the latter was formed at a much later period than the other, from the circumstance of there being many such hollows in the hill-sides of the neighbourhood, without the corresponding cave. Indeed, these hollows are justly supposed to have been used at a much earlier period of warfare and danger than the persecuting times—namely, in the days of Wallace and Bruce. They were certainly places of military vigil, as the soldiers stationed in them could survey an extensive tract of country, without being themselves seen by the enemy whose motions they watched. They might even be of more remote origin and use, as there are several Roman camps in the neighbourhood. Thriepland is near Boghall, where the immortal Wallace is said, by Blair, to have fought a bloody but successful battle with the English, and where, according to tradition, various skirmishes of lesser consequence also took place.

Bonnington lakes,
And Cruikston cakes,
    Kademuir, and the Wrae ;
And hungry, hungry Hundelshope,
    And skaw'd Bell's Brae.

Repentance Tower stands on a hill,
    The like you'll see no where,
Except the ane that's neist to it,
    Fouks ca' it Woodcockaire.
    Repentance Tower stands upon a beautiful hill in the vale of the Annan, in Dumfriesshire. Tradition states that it was built by a cruel lord, who came to a sense of the evil of his ways before he died, and placed over the door of this building the figures of a dove and a serpent, with the word " Repentance" between. Woodcockaire is a hill contiguous to that on which the tower stands. In remote times, it formed part of the large domains of the Carlyles, Lords of Tortherwald ; and it is known to have afforded excellent fodder to the horses belonging to the garrison of Lochmaben.

DRYFESDALE KIRK—(Dumfriesshire).
      This unfortunate kirk was for many centuries threatened with the following prediction :—
Let spades and shools do what they may,
Dryfe sall tak Dryfesdale Kirk away.
      The Dryfe is one of the most rattling, roaring, rapid mountain-streams in the south of Scotland ; a river of very equivocal character, uncertain size, and unsettled habits ; never content for a week at a time with the same channel ; now little, now large, now here, now there ; insatiable in the articles of lint, corn, and hay, vast quantities of which it carries away every autumn ; and, what is worst of all, a river of a most sacrilegious disposition, seeing that it has made a vow of perpetual enmity to the church and churchyard of Dryfesdale, of both of which it promises soon to destroy every vestige. It may well be said that the last trait in its character, which, before the year 1559, would have been enough to draw down upon it the terrors of excommunication, is the most strongly marked ; for whatever circuitous channels, whatever new tracts it may be pleased to pursue in its way down the vale of Dryfesdale, it is always sure, before coming to the church, to resume that single and constant route, which there enables it to sweep impetuously round the bank on which the church stands, and gradually undermine its foundations.
      These remorseless aggressions on the part of the Dryfe, which neither bribery, in the shape of a new and more pleasant channel, nor resistance, in the shape of embanking, can withstand, have at last compelled the parishioners of Dryfesdale to remove their place of worship to the village of Lockerbie, which, being thus rendered the kirk-town, has taken away and appropriated all the prosperity of the former kirk-town of Dryfesdale. The stream of Dryfe is, therefore, left to work out the purpose of the prophecy at its leisure ; and we are informed that it now seems on the point of accomplishing its will, part of the walls of the ruined church actually overhanging the water. The sepulchral vault of the ancient family of Johnston of Lockerbie, which contains some old monuments, must thus also be destroyed ; and as for the churchyard, against which the wrath of the Dryfe seems to have been as fully directed as it was at the church, only a small portion is now left.

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      There is a saying in this district of Dumfriesshire, that "a Dryfesdale man once buried a wife and married a wife baith in ae day." However strange this may appear, it is perfectly true, but the whole wonder is to be attributed to the incalculable Dryfe. In its advances towards the church, the stream has, of course, made away with all the intervening part of the burying-ground. At every flood a portion of the ground has been carried off, together with the relics of mortality contained therein, as well as the gravestones, some of which lie in the channel of the stream a good way down. On account of the attachment of the peasantry to their respective places of sepulture, the aggressions of the Dryfe, however threatening, have scarcely ever deterred the people from depositing their dead even close by the bank, and where there could be no probability of their being permitted to remain till decayed. A man having once buried his wife under these circumstances, the Dryfe soon succeeded in detaching the coffin ; but expeditious as it was in this feat, no less expeditious was the widower in wooing a new bride ; and it so happened, that, on the very day when he was leading the new lady to church in order to marry her, the stream, being at flood, carried off the coffin of his former spouse. In going along the water-side, the bridal company were met, full in the face, by the coffin, which, as the country people tell the story, " came houdin' down the water in great haste." The poor bride took a hysteric, as became her, while the alarmed bridegroom and his friends proceeded to re-inter her predecessor, and after hastily concluding this ceremony, they went on with the more blithesome affair of the bridal !
      It is perhaps worthy of remark, that Dryfesdale churchyard was one of those honoured by the attentions of Old Mortality, and that that celebrated personage was found expiring upon the road near the burying-ground, while his old white horse, scarcely less interesting than himself, was discovered grazing among the tomb-stones, which it had been so long its master's delight to keep in repair.

      " This moss is nearly a dead level of from two to three miles in breadth, and ten miles in length, stretching from the shore of the Solway Firth into the interior of the country. There is a tradition that this barren waste was at some remote period covered with wood, and that afterwards it was inundated by the sea, which, upon receding, left behind it the decaying vegetable matter in which the moss originated. This tradition has been embodied, by the peasantry, in the following couplet:—
First a wood, and then a sea,
Now a moss, and ever will be.
And its truth is corroborated by the fact, that the moss rests upon a deep stratum of sea-sand, out of which not only are shells and other marine deposits frequently dug, but fragments of ancient vessels, of no very inconsiderable size, together with several iron grapples or anchors. Some ancient canoes or boats have also been found, and in particular one formed out of the trunk of a large oak, hollowed apparently by fire. Between the surface of the moss and the sea-sand, immense trunks of trees are found. These, which are principally fir, invariably lie with their tops towards the north-east ; from which it would appear, that the roots having been previously loosened by the inundation of the sea, they had been levelled by the fury of the south-western blast."—New Stat. Account of Scotland—Par. of Dumfries.
      The bed of Lochar Moss was unquestionably in a former age the bed of a sub-estuary of the Solway. There are also powerful reasons for believing that it was in this condition at a period subsequent to the peopling of our island. The puzzling question is, how did this large hollow fill up with vegetable matter ?—whether by drift from the ocean, or by an intermediate change of level, rendering the bed of the estuary dry land ?

      In certain remote districts large stones are found, with rude though not antique inscriptions, apparently the work of idle or ingenious shepherds. They abound in Galloway. Upon the farm of Knockiebay, in this district, there is a stone, on the upper side of which are cut the words—

Lift me up, and I'll tell you more.

Obeying this injunction, many simple people have, at various periods, exerted their strength, in order to discover the expected treasure below, where they only found carved the remaining member of the couplet—
Lay me down as I was before.

Cairnsmuir o' Fleet,
    Cairnsmuir o' Dee,
And Cairnsmuir o' Carsphairn,
    The biggest o' the three.

The Sloke, Milnwharcher, and Craigneen,
    The Breska, and Sligna,
They are the five best Crocklet hills
    The auld wives ever saw.

Carrick for a man,
    Kyle for a cow,
Cunningham for corn and bere,
    And Galloway for woo'.
      This old rhyme points out what each of the three districts of Ayrshire and the neighbouring territory of Galloway were remarkable for producing in greatest perfection. The mountainous province of Carrick produced robust men ; the rich plains of Kyle reared the famous breed of cattle now generally termed the Ayrshire breed ; and Cunningham was a good arable district. The hills of Galloway abound in excellent sheep.

      In Ayrshire, the following rhyme is prevalent, and is probably very old :—
Donald Din
Built his house without a pin.
Alluding to Dundonald Castle, the ancient seat of King Robert II., *  and now the last remaining pro-

  " Dundonald Castle, the scene of King Robert's early attachment and nuptials with the fair Elizabeth (Mure), is situated in Kyle-Stewart, of which, from the remotest period, it appears to have been the chief messuage, about six miles south-west of Rowalian, and approaching within about a mile of the Firth of Clyde. Its situation, on the summit of a beautiful round hill, in the close vicinity of Dundonald Church, is singularly noble and baronial. Although evidently of considerable antiquity, yet certainly another of still greatly more remote origin to the present Castle of Dundonald once occupied the same site. To the more remote building may allude the following rude rhyme, if it be not altogether a piece of rustic wit of recent times :—
' There stands a castle in the west,
      They ca' it Donald Din ;
  There's no a nail in a' its roof,
      Nor yet a wooden pin.' "
History of the House of Rowalian, p. 50.

    King Robert died at Dundonald Castle, anno 1390. Dr John-
  p.12 /   son and Mr Boswell visited the ruins on their return from the Hebrides ; and the former laughed outright at the idea of a Scottish monarch being accommodated, with his court, in so narrow and mean a mansion.

perty in Ayrshire of the noble family who take their title from it. According to tradition, it was built by a hero named Donald Din, or Din Donald, and constructed entirely of stone, without the use of wood—a supposition countenanced by the appearance of the building, which consists of three distinct storeys, arched over with strong stone-work, the roof of one forming the floor of another. Donald, the builder, was originally a poor man, but had the faculty of dreaming lucky dreams. Upon one occasion, he dreamed, thrice in one night, that if he were to go to London Bridge, he would become a wealthy man. He went accordingly, saw a man looking over the parapet of the bridge, whom he accosted courteously, and, after a little conversation, intrusted with the secret of the occasion of his visiting London Bridge. The stranger told him that he had made a very foolish errand, for he himself had once had a similar vision, which directed him to go to a certain spot in Ayrshire, in Scotland, where he would find a vast treasure, and, for his part, he had never once thought of obeying the injunction. From his description of the spot, the sly Scotsman at once perceived that the treasure in question must be concealed in no other place than his own humble kail-yard at home, to which he immediately repaired, in full expectation of finding it. Nor was he disappointed ; for, after destroying many good and promising cabbages, and completely cracking credit with his wife, who esteemed him mad, he found a large potful of gold coin, with the proceeds of which he built a stout castle for himself, and became the founder of a flourishing family. This absurd story is localised in almost every district of Scotland, always referring to London Bridge, for the fame of Queen Maude's singular erection seems to have reached this remote country at an early period. Mr Hogg has wrought up the fiction in a very amusing manner in one of his " Winter Evening Tales," substituting the Bridge of Kelso for that of London. Other tales of money-diggers and treasure-seekers abound in Scotland. We venture to record the following, on account of their accompanying rhymes :—
      It is supposed by the people who live in the neighbourhood of Largo Law, in Fife, that there is a very rich mine of gold under and near the mountain, which has never yet been properly searched for. So convinced are they of the verity of this, that whenever they see the wool of a sheep's side tinged with yellow, they think it has acquired that colour from having lain above the gold of the mine.*

  There is a popular belief that the Eildon Hills contain a mine of gold, from the teeth of the sheep becoming yellow after feeding upon them.

A great many years ago, a ghost made its appearance upon the spot, and was supposed to be laden with the secret of the mine ; but as it, of course, required to be spoken to before it would condescend to speak, the question was, who should take it upon himself to go up and accost it. At length, a shepherd, inspired by the all-powerful love of gold, took courage, and demanded the cause of its thus " revisiting," &c. The ghost proved very affable, and requested a meeting on a particular night, at eight o'clock, when, said the spirit,

" If Auchindownie cock disna craw,
  And Balmain horn disna blaw,
  I'll tell ye where the gowd mine is in Largo Law."
      The shepherd took what he conceived to be effectual measures for preventing any obstacles being thrown in the way of his becoming custodier of the important secret, for not a cock, old, young, or middle-aged, was left alive at the farm of Auchindownie ; while the man who, at that of Balmain, was in the habit of blowing the horn for the housing of the cows, was strictly enjoined to dispense with that duty on the night in question. The hour was come, and the ghost, true to its promise, appeared, ready to divulge the secret ; when Tammie Norrie, the cow-herd of Balmain, either through obstinacy or forgetfulness, "blew a blast both loud and dread," and I may add, " were ne'er prophetic sounds so full of woe," for, to the shepherd's mortal disappointment, the ghost vanished, after exclaiming,
" Woe to the man that blew the horn,
  For out of the spot he shall ne'er be borne."
      In fulfilment of this denunciation, the unfortunate horn-blower was struck dead upon the spot ; and it being found impossible to remove his body, which seemed, as it were, pinned to the earth, a cairn of stones was raised over it, which, now grown into a green hillock, is still denominated Norrie's Law, and regarded as no canny by the common people. This place is situated upon the farm of Fairyfield, which was formerly the patrimonial property of the celebrated Dr Archibald Pitcairn.
      In the south of Scotland, it is the popular belief that vast treasures are concealed beneath the ruins of Hermitage Castle ; but being in the keeping of the Evil One, they are considered beyond redemption. It is true, some hardy persons have, at different times, made the attempt to dig for them ; but, somehow, the elements always on such occasions contrived to produce an immense storm of thunder and lightning, and deterred the adventurers from proceeding, otherwise, of course, the money would have long ago been found. It is ever thus that supernatural obstacles come in the way of these interesting discoveries. An honest man in Perthshire, named Finlay Robertson, about fifty years ago, went, with some stout-hearted companions, to seek the treasures which were supposed to be concealed in the darksome cave of a deceased Highland robber ; but, just as they had commenced operations with their mattocks, the whole party were instantaneously struck as with an electric shock, which sent them home with fear and trembling, and they were ever after remarked as silent, mysterious men, very apt to take offence when allusion was made to their unsuccessful enterprise.
      In the south country it is also believed that there is concealed at Tamleuchar Cross, in Selkirkshire, a valuable treasure, of which the situation is thus vaguely described by a popular rhyme :—
Atween the wat grund and the dry,
The gowd o' Tamleuchar doth lie.
      The following is another southern traditionary tale of money-digging :—A shepherd once dreamed (as usual), three times in one night, that there was a potful of gold in his cabbage garden. Upon digging, he found a pot, but, alas, it contained nothing ! He was much disappointed, but, rather than lose all, turned over the empty vessel to the care of his wife, that it might be appropriated to domestic uses. About eighteen years thereafter, when the shepherd had almost forgot his delusive dream, the said vessel was hanging one day over the fire, in the respectable capacity of a kail-pot, when a pedlar came in, with his professional drouth [i.e. hunger], and was treated by the gudewife to a basin of broth. While devouring his mess by the fireside, his eye caught some strange characters encircling the rim of the pot, which he forthwith proceeded to inspect, and found to form a Latin sentence. Being acquainted with that language, he was able to explain the meaning in English to the honest couple, who affected to know nothing particular about the pot, and expressed but little curiousity respecting the meaning of the legend, which was to the following effect :—
Beneath this pot you will find another,
being perhaps expressed thus, in a sort of rhyme;

p.13 /

Infra hanc pateram,
Invenies a 'teram.
The pedlar wondered what could be meant by this, and the proprietors of the pot wondered as much as he, though well they knew what was implied. After the stranger had taken his leave, they went to the garden, dug at the spot where they found the first pot, and, accordingly, discovered another, which was quite full of gold, and made them comfortable for life.
      A story somewhat similar to one of the preceding is very well known in the neighbourhood of Kilmarnock. It is popularly believed that, for many ages past, a pot of gold has lain perdu at the bottom of a pool beneath a fall of the Finnick Water, near Craufurdland Bridge, and about three miles from Kilmarnock. Many attempts have been made to recover this treasure, but something always occurred to prevent a successful issue. The last was about a century ago, by no less a person than the Laird of Craufurdland, at the head of a party of his domestics, who first dammed up the water, then emptied the pool of its contents, and were just upon the point of drawing up the object of their search, when a noise overhead caused them to let go their prize and look upwards. They perceived a terrific figure standing on the top of the hill, using violent gesticulations, and crying,
" Tip tow !
  Craufurdland's a' in a low !"
Whereupon the laird, believing that the Evil One had set fire to his house, in order to divert him from his researches, left the scene, followed by his servants, and ran home to save what he could. Of course, there was no fire whatever at the house, and when they came back to resume their operations, they found the water falling over the linn in full force ; and such was their consternation, that they durst not make any farther attempt, and no one has since been found of sufficient hardihood to encounter the dangers which are supposed to guard the treasure.
      We conclude our anecdotes of money-digging with the following ludicrous story, highly characteristic of Scottish cunning and Irish simplicity. On the farm of Clerkston, in the parish of Lesmahagow, there had existed since creation an immense stone, or saxum, which, being deeply bedded in the middle of a good field, at a great distance from any other rocks, was productive of infinite inconvenience to the husbandman, and defrauded the proprietor of a considerable portion of territory. Beneath this stone, it was believed by the country people of the last generation, that there was secreted a vast treasure, in the shape of " a kettle-full, a boot-full, and a bull-hide-full," of gold, all which got the ordinary name, reason unknown, of " Katie Neevie's hoord." The credibility of this popular tradition was attested by a rhyme to the following effect:—
Between Dillerhill and Crossfoord,
There lies Katie Neevie's hoord.
Many efforts had been made, according to the gossips, to remove the stone and get at the treasure ; but all were baffled by the bodily appearance of the enemy of mankind, who, by breathing intolerable flame in the faces of those making the attempt, obliged them to desist. Thus well guarded, the legacy of Mrs Katherine Niven lay for centuries as snug as if it had been deposited in Chancery ; and it was not till at least an hundred years after the last despairing effort had been made that the charm was at length broke. Mr James Prentice, the farmer of Clerkston, had the address to convince several Irishmen, who had served him during the harvest, of the truth of the said rhyme, and, by expatiating upon the supposed immensity of the treasure, wrought up their curiousity and their cupidity to such a pitch, that they resolved, with his permission, to break the stone in pieces and make themselves masters of whatever might be found below. On the day after the kirn, therefore, the poor fellows provided themselves with a well-loaded gun, for the protection of their persons from all evil agencies, and fell to work, with punches and mallets, to blow up and utterly destroy the huge stone which alone intervened between them and everlasting affluence. They laboured the whole day, without provoking any visit from Satan, and at last succeeded in fairly eradicating the stone from the field which it had so long encumbered, when they became at once convinced of the fallacy of the rhyme, of the craft of Mr Prentice, and of their own deluded credulity.

Sundrum shall sink,
    Auchincruive shall fa',
And the name o' Cathcart
    Shall in time wear awa' !
      This rhyme threatens the prosperity, and predicts the ultimate extermination, of the ancient Ayrshire family represented by Earl Cathcart. Sundrum and Auchincruive were formerly the property of this family, but, long since alienated, now respectively belong to — Hamilton, Esq., and — Oswald, Esq. Sundrum, which, in bygone times, was the chief residence of the family of Cathcart, is situated about four miles eastward from Ayr, upon the banks of the water of Coyl, and being placed upon the top of a high brae of very ill-compacted material, has really an insecure appearance. But perhaps the sinking with which it is threatened, is only a figurative allusion to the ruin of those who formerly possessed it. Many such prophecies are attached to the strongholds and names of families remarkable in feudal times for their power or their oppressive disposition.

The height atween Tintock-tap and Coulterfell
Is just three quarters o' an ell.
      These hills are the most conspicuous objects in a district of Lanarkshire, which is in general rather flat, and the rhyme seems merely to denote that they are nearly of the same height.

On Tintock-Tap there is a mist,
And in that mist there is a kist,
And in the kist there is a caup,
And in the caup there is a drap ;
Tak up the caup, drink aff the drap,
And set the caup on Tintock-Tap
      Tintock may be called a very popular mountain ; and this chiefly arises from its standing almost alone in the midst of a country generally level. On the summit is an immense accumulation of stones, said to have been brought thither at different times from the vale (distance three Scotch miles) by the country people, upon whom the task was enjoined as a penance, by the priests of St John's Kirk, which was situated in a little glen at the north-east skirt of the mountain, though no vestige of its existence now remains except the burying-ground. The summit of Tintock is often enveloped in mist ; and the "kist" mentioned in the rhyme, was, perhaps, a large stone, remarkable over all the rest of the heap for having a hole in its upper side, which the country people say was formed by the grasp of Sir William Wallace's thumb, on the evening previous to his defeating the English at Boghall, in the neighbourhood. The hole is generally full of water, on account of the drizzling nature of the atmosphere ; but if it is meant by the "caup" mentioned, we must suppose that the whole is intended as a mockery of human strength ; for it is   p.14 /   certainly impossible to lift the stone and drink off the contents of the hollow.

'Tween the Rae Hill and Loriburnshaw,
There ye'll find Cowdaily wa',
      And the foundations laid on Ern.
      Near Carnwath, in Lanarkshire, stands Cowthally, Cowdaily, or Quodaily Castle, an early residence of the noble family of Somerville. The first Somerville, as tradition reports, came from France, and dispossessed the former proprietor of Cowthally ; some of whose vassals he subjected to his authority, though, it appears, without succeeding in attaching them very faithfully to his interests. Somerville demolished the outer walls of the castle, and a good part of the castle itself, before he could make himself master of it ; and afterwards saw fit to rebuild it in a different place. But against this design he found circumstances in strong opposition. As the country people say, " what of the wall he got built during the day was regularly dung down at night." Suspecting the fidelity of his watchmen, he undertook to " wake the castle" in person. It would appear that this had no effect in saving the building ; for who should come to demolish it but the Evil One himself, with four or five of his principal servants, who, without heeding Somerville's expostulations, or even his active resistance, fell to and undid the work of the day, chanting all the while, in unearthly articulation, the above rhyme ; and it is added, that, in compliance with this hint, Somerville was obliged to rebuild the castle of Cowdaily on its original foundations, which were of iron. It is supposed that some of the vassals of the former lord, in this affair, personated the demons ; and that, while the French watchmen were thereby terrified out of their wits, the Scottish men, whom Somerville had pressed into his service, considered the whole transaction as a piece of good sport, and connived at it out of secret enmity to their new master.

Cauld kail in Comestane,
    And crowdie in Quothquan ;
Singit sweens in Symingstane,
    And brose in Pettinain.
      Comestane, Quothquan, Symington, and Pettinain, in the Upper Ward of Lanarkshire, are here celebrated for a variety of dishes, mostly of an unattractive description. Quothquan, or Quodquan, comprises two villages, called the Upper and Nether Towns of Quothquan ; and, though important neither from population, nor wealth, this self-complacent little place had the assurance, in 1706, to petition the Scottish parliament against the Union.

Canner and Cannermill,
Cannerside and Rawhill,
The Riccartoun, the Rabbertoun,
    The Raploch, and the Ross,
The Mirrytoun, the Skellytoun,
    Cornsilloch, and Dalserf.

WHITTINGHAME—(East Lothian).
      It is little more than half a century since the good people of Whittinghame got happily quit of a ghost, which, in the shape of an " unchristened wean," had annoyed them for many years. An unnatural mother having murdered her child at a large tree, not far from the village, the ghost of the deceased was afterwards seen, on dark nights, running in a distracted manner between the said tree and the churchyard, and was occasionally heard to greet. It was understood by the villagers, that it was obliged thus to take the air, and bewail itself, on account of wanting a name—no anonymous person, it seems, being able to get a proper footing in the other world. Nobody durst speak to the unhappy little spirit, out of a superstitious dread of dying immediately after ; and, to all appearance, the village of Whittinghame was destined to be haunted till the end of time, for want of an exorcist. At length it fortunately happened, that a drunkard, one night on reeling home, encountered it, and, being fearless in the strength of John Barleycorn, did not hesitate to address it in the same familiar style as if it had been one of his own flesh and blood fellow-topers. " How's a' wi' ye this morning. Short-Hoggers ?" cried the courageous villager ; when the ghost immediately ran away, joyfully exclaiming—
" Oh, weel's me noo, I've gotten a name ;
  They ca' me Short-Hoggers o' Whittinghame !"
And, since that time, it has never been either seen or heard of. The name which the drunkard applied to it denotes that the ghost wore short stockings without feet, a probable supposition, considering the long series of years during which it had walked. Our informant received this story, with the rhyme, from the lips of an old woman of Whittinghame, who had seen the ghost.

      Sir William Sinclair of Roslin, in a hunting-match with King Robert Bruce, wagered his head that a white deer which they started would be pulled down by his dogs before it could cross the March Burn. The animal being on the point of crossing the brook untouched, Sir William, according to popular story, shouted out—
" Help !—haud an ye may,
  Or Roslin will lose his head this day."
His best dog, Help, thus encouraged, made a spring and seized the deer in time to save its master, who, the story runs, immediately set his foot upon its neck and killed it, that it might never lead him again into temptation. The knight, with the dog at his foot, appears sculptured on his tomb in Roslin chapel.

Musselbrogh was a brogh
    When Edinbrogh was nane ;
And Musselbrogh 'ill be a brogh,
    When Edinbrogh is gane.
      This is a pun, or quibble. Brogh is a term for a muscle bed, one of which exists at the mouth of the Esk, and gives name to the burgh. It is of course undeniable that the mussel-brogh of the Esk existed before, and will exist after, the neighbouring capital.

Edinburgh castle, toune, and tower,
    God grant thou sink for sinne,
And that even for the black dinoure
    Erle Douglas gat therein.
      This emphatic malediction is cited by Hume of Godscroft, in his History of the House of Douglas, as referring to the death of William, sixth Earl of Douglas, a youth of eighteen, who, having been inveigled by Chancellor Crichton into the castle of Edinburgh, was there basely put to death, anno 1440. The young earl was in the course of being entertained at dinner, when a bull's head was brought in, the signal of death ; and he was instantly hurried out, subjected to a mock trial, and beheaded on a log found on the castle hill. Hume, speaking of this transaction, says, with be-   p.15 /   coming indignation. " It is sure the people did abhorre it—execrating the very place where it was done, in detestation of the fact—of which the memory remaineth yet to our dayes in these words."

In Littlecoats a bow o' groats,
In Luckenhouses gude flesh boats ;
And there's nine lasses in Carsewell,
And not a lad among them all !
      These are farm-steads upon the south side of the Pentland Hills, about nine miles south from Edinburgh. Between Littlecoats and Luckenhouses runs the rivulet called the Deadman's Grain, which received its name from a remarkable circumstance. One of the Covenanters, flying from Rullion Green, mounted the horse of a slain dragoon a little way from the field of battle, but was immediately and closely pursued. In this extremity, he took one of the pistols from the holster before him, and, by a Parthian-like manœuvre, fired it beneath his left arm at his enemies ; but was thus so unfortunate as to destroy his only chance of escape, by wounding his own horse in the flank, whereupon he was caught and slain. In commemoration of this event, the place was called the Deadman's Grain, the latter word signifying the place of junction of two small mountain rills which happen to meet in a forked manner. The nine lasses of Carsewell, whose situation must have been none of the most cheering, belonged, says tradition, to one farmer's family, named Henry.

      The common story is, that an unfortunate lady whose first name was Ailie (Anglicè, Alice), lived with a Duke of Hamilton, a great number of years ago, at Kinniel House, West Lothian. She put an end to her existence, by throwing herself from the walls of the castle into the deep ravine below, through which the Gilburn descends. Her spirit is supposed to haunt this glen ; and it is customary for the children of Linlithgowshire, on dark and stormy nights to say—
Lady, Lady Lilburn,
Hunts in the Gilburn.
      It is more likely that Lady Lilburn was the wife of the celebrated Cromwellian colonel, who for a time occupied Kinniel House.

THE LINKS OF FORTH—(Stirlingshire).
      The numerous windings of the Forth, called Links, form a great number of beautiful peninsulas, which, being of a very luxuriant and fertile soil, gave rise to the following old rhyme:—
A crook o' the Forth
Is worth an earldom o' the north.

" Oh, is it the Links o'Forth ?" she cried,
    " Or is it the Crooks o' Dee,
Or the bonnie woods o' Warrockhead,
    That I sae fain wad see ?"—Guy Mannering.

BRIDGE OF TEATH—(Perthshire).
      In 1530, Robert Spittel, who designated himself  " tailzour to the maist honorabill Princes Margaret, queen to James the Feird," and who seems to have made a large fortune by his trade, founded the bridge of Teath, immediately above Doune Castle, for the convenience of his fellow-lieges, who, before that period, had no means of crossing the river, excepting by an old, ill-constructed wooden bridge at Callander, some miles distant. Though this goodly edifice was a work of charity, and intended exclusively for their convenience, the common people could not help regarding it with all the suspicion and dislike which the lower classes of Scotland too often entertain respecting attempts at improvement, comfort, or decoration. While they took advantage of the expensive public work erected for their service, they could not help thinking upon the good old bridge of Callander with feelings of tenderness ; and this sentiment seems to have extended itself into a comparison between the old and the new bridges, much to the disadvantage of the latter. The rhyme in which this sentiment was embodied, has been preserved by tradition, though the object of its flattery is supposed not to have been in existence since the time of the Reformation.
The new brig o' Doune, and the auld brig o' Callander—
Four-and-twenty bows in the auld brig o' Callander !
This, we suppose, alludes to the circumstance of there having been no fewer than the extraordinary number of twenty-four arches in the ancient bridge, a peculiarity of structure which would by no means recommend it to a committee of modern architects, whatever might have been thought of its magnificence in former times. The reader will remark the curious coincidence between what is above recorded and the subject-matter of Burns's admirable poem, entitled The Twa Brigs, where the popular opinions respecting bridges, ancient and modern, are brought into contrast in a style singularly happy and fanciful.

Between the Camp at Ardoch and the Greenan-Hill o' Keir,
Lie seven kings' ransoms for seven hunder year.
      This is the present popular version of a rhyme otherwise given by Mr Gordon in his Itinerarium Septentrionale, as follows:—
From the Fort of Ardoch
    To the Grinnan-Hill of Keir,
Are nine kings' rents
    For nine hundred year.
The variations are not important, as the places are the same in each, and the supposed treasures are alike vast.
      The Camp at Ardoch is supposed to be the most complete Roman fortification now existing in Britain. It lies in the parish of Muthil, Perthshire, upon a rising ground close by the Knaic Water, and at a short distance from a Roman causeway, which runs in a north and north-east direction from a part of the wall of Antoninus, near Falkirk, past Stirling, and so on towards Brechin. The area of the camp was 140 by 125 yards within the lines ; and beyond the scope of this measurement a great deal of ground is occupied by the remains of numerous walls and trenches. The prætentura, or general's quarter, rises above the level of the camp, but is not in the centre. It is a regular square, each side being exactly twenty yards. At present it exhibits evident marks of having been enclosed by a stone wall, and contains the foundations of a house ten yards by seven.
      At the distance of half a mile from the Camp at Ardoch stands the Grinnan-Hill (that is, Sunny Hill) of Keir, another Roman fortification of inferior importance, supposed to communicate with the former by a subterranean passage. This is not a popular tradition only, but a probable fact, countenanced by the opinions of antiquaries, and by the following circumstance :—Till the year 1720, there existed, about six paces to the eastward of the prætentura, the aperture of a passage which went in a sloping direction downwards and towards the hill of Keir. This, according to the rhyme, was supposed to contain vast treasures ; and there is a tradition that this supposition received something like confirmation about two centuries ago. In order to ascertain the fact, a man, who had been condemned by the baron-court of a   p.16 /   neighbouring lord, was proffered his life, on condition that he would descend into the hole, and try what he could do in the way of treasure-finding. Being let down by a rope to a great depth, and then in a short time drawn up again to the surface, he brought with him some Roman helmets, spears, fragments of bridles, and other articles. On being let down a second time, he was killed by foul air ; and though it was believed that, if he had lived, great discoveries would have been made, no one after that thought it prudent to make the attempt. The mouth of the hole was covered up with a mill-stone, by an old gentleman, who lived at the house of Ardoch, while the family were living in Russia, about the year 1720, to prevent hares from running into it when pursued by his dogs ; and as earth, to a considerable depth, was laid over the millstone, the spot cannot now be found.
      Sir James Balfour, in his Geographical Notes, (MSS. Advocates' Library), speaks of Ardoch as " a statione of the Roman soldears, or Spanish stipendiars, under the command of the proconsull Hostorius Scapula, in his march from the River Bodotria (Forth) against the Otholinians, quhen [lit.] as he thought to have surprised the Pictish king in his castell of Baen-Artee."

PLACES IN GLENDEVON—(Clackmannanshire).
There's Alva, and Dollar, and Tillicoul-trie,
But the bonnie braes o' Menstrie bear awa' the gree.
That is, excel all the rest. The vale of Glendevon is throughout a fine one ; but the slopes of Menstrie, in the lower part of it, are generally acknowledged to be the most beautiful portion of the district, from being so well clothed with wood.
      There is a various version of the rhyme. The wife of a miller at Menstrie, being very handsome, engaged the affections of some of the " good neighbours," or fairies, and was in consequence stolen away by them. The unfortunate husband was much distressed, more particularly when he heard his lost spouse singing from the air the following verse :
Oh, Alva woods are bonnie,
    Tillicoultrie hills are fair ;
But when I think o' the bonnie braes o' Menstrie,
    It maks my heart aye sair.
This ditty she chanted every day within his hearing, in a tone of the greatest affection. At length, as he was one day riddling some stuff near the door of his mill, he chanced to use a magical posture—the spell that held his wife in captivity was instantly dissolved—and she dropped down from the air at his feet.

Lochtie, Lothrie, Leven, and Orr,
Rin a' through Cameron brig bore.
      Of these four Fife streams, the Leven is the principal. It absorbs the waters and names of all the rest, before passing under the bridge of Cameron, near the sea-port village of Wemyss. Orr is next in point of importance, and, running for a considerable way parallel to the Leven, joins it a little above the bridge. Each receives a tributary stream—the Leven the Lothrie, and Orr the Lochtie.

Happy the man who belongs to no party,
But sits in his ain house and looks at Benarty.
      Sir Michael Malcolm of Loch Orr, an eccentric baronet, pronounced this oracular couplet in his old age, when troubled with the talk about the French Revolution. As a picture of meditative serenity and neutrality it seems worthy of preservation.
      On the top of Benarty, which rises above Loch Orr, there were formerly held games, which all the shepherds of Fife and other neighbouring counties attended. They brought their wives, daughters, and sweethearts, and having a plentiful stock of victuals, kept up the fête for a few days, bivouacking upon the ground during the night. The chief games were the golf, the foot-ball, and the wads ;* and what with howling, singing, and drinking, after the manner of an Irish patron, they continued to spend the time very merrily. The top of Benarty is flat, and sufficiently extensive for their purpose. This custom is now disused, the number of shepherds being much diminished, and the profession not being of such importance in the country as formerly, on account of the increased number of fences.

  Wad—a pledge or hostage.

Witches in the Watergate,
    Fairies in the Mill ;
Brosy taids o' Niviston
    Can never get their fill.
Sma' drink in the Punful,
    Crowdie in the kirk ;
Grey meal in Boreland,
    Waur than ony dirt.
Bread and cheese in the Easter Mains,
Cauld sowens in the Waster Mains,
Hard heads in Hardiston,
    Quakers in the Pow ;
The braw lasses o' Adie
    Canna spin their ain tow.

'Tween the Isle o' May
And the Links o' Tay,
Mony a ship's been cast away.

A sad truth, briefly stated.

      Glenlyon in Perthshire is remarkable for the great number of remains of aboriginal works scattered through it, in the shape of circular castles built entirely of dry stones. The common people believe these structures to have belonged to their semi-mythic hero Fingal, and have a verse to that effect :
Bha da chaisteal dheug aig Fionn
Ann an Crom-ghleann-nan clach.

That is, Fingal had twelve castles in the Crooked Glen of Stones (such being an old name for Glenlyon).

Grace and peace cam by Collace,
    And by the doors o' Dron ;
But the caup and stoup o' Abernyte
    Mak mony a merry man.
Collace is a village under the slope of famed Dunsinan hill ; Dron, a parish to the south of Perth ; and Abernyte, a parish in the Carse of Gowrie.

      This beautiful city suffered from a nocturnal inundation of the Tay, anno 1210;†

  So, according to Boece and others, though historians of the Dalrymple cast deny the event altogether.

and it is predicted that yet once again it will be destroyed in a similar   p.17 /   manner. The Gaelic prophecy is couched in the following lines :—

Tatha mhor na'an toun
Bheir I' scriob lom
        Air Peairt.
Literally in English—
Great Tay of the waves
Shall sweep Perth bare.
      The town lies so little above the level of the river, that such an event does not seem improbable. There is also a Lowland rhyme equally threatening—
Says the Shochie to the Ordie,
    " Where shall we meet ?"
" At the cross of Perth,
    When a' men are fast asleep !"
These are two streams, which fall into the Tay about five miles above the town. It is said that, on the building of the old bridge, the cross of Bertha was taken down, and built into the central arch, with a view to fulfil, without harm, the intentions of the Shochie and Ordie, and permit the men of Perth to sleep secure in their beds.

When the Yowes o' Gowrie come to land,
The day o' judgement's near at hand.
      A prophecy prevalent in the Carse of Gowrie and in Forfarshire. The Ewes of Gowrie are two large blocks of stone, situated within high-water mark, on the northern shore of the Firth of Tay, at the small village of Invergowrie. The prophecy obtains universal credit among the country people. In consequence of the deposition of silt on that shore of the firth, the stones are gradually approaching the land, and there is no doubt will ultimately be beyond flood-mark. It is the popular belief that they move an inch nearer to the shore every year. The expected fulfilment of the prophecy has deprived many an old woman of her sleep ; and it is a common practice among the weavers and bonnet-makers of Dundee, to walk out to Invergowrie on Sunday afternoons, simply to see what progress the Yowes are making !

St Johnston ere long in the Highlands will be,
And the salt water scarcely will reach to Dundee ;
Sea-covered Drumly will then be dry land,
And the Bell Rock as high as the Ailsa will stand.
      St Johnston is an old name for Perth—St John, to whom the great church was dedicated, having been considered as the patron saint of the burgh. It is still a familiar appellation for the " fair city :" thus, for example, to quote a common saying—" The sun and the moon may go wrong ; but the clock o' St Johnston never goes wrong." Drumly is the name of a great sand-bank near the opening of the Firth of Tay. The above rhyme was probably suggested by the appearances which exist of the space now occupied by the Carse of Gowrie having formerly been filled by an estuary, giving rise to a presumption that the sea has receded. Supposing a still greater recession, the effect would certainly be as stated in the rhyme. Geologists, however, have now determined that what appear recessions of the sea have been brought about, in most instances, by an upheaval of the land : the sea is now determined to be the steadier element of the two. Messrs Lyell and Buckland will therefore deem it probable that, if Drumly is to become dry land, and Inchcape Rock to take the appearance of Ailsa Craig, it must be by means of the " gradually elevating forces."

I was tempit at Pittempton,
    Draiglit at Baldragon,
Stricken at Strike-Martin,
    And killed at Martin's Stane.
      Tradition connects this rhyme with the following romantic incident, which is generally known and believed by the country people living near the places referred to :—
      At a very remote period, when Scotland was not altogether reclaimed from its aboriginal savage state, and when it was yet infested by beasts of prey, a peasant, who resided at a place called Pittempton, about three miles from Dundee, along with his nine daughters, all famed for their beauty and virtue, one day desired the eldest to bring a pitcher of water from the well, which lay at a short distance from the house. It was near sunset ; and as the girl stayed unusually long, one of her sisters was sent out to learn the occasion of her delay. She likewise failed to return at the time expected ; and another was then dispatched, with an angry message to the former two, commanding them instantly home, under pain of their father's severe displeasure. The third was, in her turn, also delayed ; and it was not till the fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh, eighth, and ninth had been successively dispatched in the same manner, and when he observed night fast approaching, that the father became seriously alarmed for their personal safety. He then seized his fish-spear, and ran to the well, where he discovered a monstrous serpent, or dragon, lying besmeared with blood, apparently having killed and devoured all the nine unfortunate maidens. Unable to cope single-handed with so formidable a foe, the poor man retreated in dismay ; but having quickly collected several hundreds of his neighbours, soon returned to the place, and prepared to attack the monster, which had thus deprived him of all earthly comfort.
      The dragon (for so it is styled by the country people, though probably only one of those serpents of whose devastations so many traditionary stories are told in different places) finding himself hotly pressed on all sides, endeavoured to escape, and maintained a sort of running fight with the little army of rustics, each individual of which seemed anxious to signalise himself by killing so extraordinary a reptile. Among these, a youth, named Martin, the lover of one of the hapless maidens, and a man, it would appear, of great bravery and strength, was determined either to revenge the death of his mistress or die in the attempt. The serpent at first took a northerly route, and was sorely beset and roughly handled at a place called Baldragon, distant about quarter of a mile in that direction from Pittempton, and which, though now drained, was then a moss ; whence the line in the rhyme " draiglit" (that is, wetted) " at Baldragon." Still continuing his flight northwards for about two miles, he was again surrounded by his enemies ; and here Martin endeavoured to signalise himself by a single combat with his scaly foe. With a blow of his massy club he restrained the progress of the monster, which was about to revenge the stroke by darting upon him, when the rustics, coming up at this moment, exclaimed, " Strike, Martin !" and Martin, then letting fall his club a second time, with prodigious effect, and to the almost complete discomfiture of the dragon, which now crawled heavily away, the scene of so remarkable an achievement was thence called Strike-Martin. The dragon now continued his retreat about half a mile still farther north, when it was again hemmed in by the rustics, and finally slain by the heroic Martin. A stone, bearing the outlined figure of a serpent, and the above rhyme, in very rude and ancient characters, still marks the spot, and is always called Martin's Stane. It is also worth narrating, as a confirmation of the circumstances re-   p.18 /   lated, that the well is still called The Nine Maidens' Well, being known by no other name.

Prosin, Esk, and Carity,
Meet a' at the birken buss o' Inverarity.
      The Prosin and Carity are two small streams which join the Esk at Inverquharity or Inverarity, the ancient seat of the Ogilvies of Inverquharity, near Forfar.

Bonny Munross will be a moss,*
    Dundee will be dung doun :
Forfar will be Forfar still ;
     And Brechin a braw burrows' toun.
                          Aberdeen shall be a green.

The beggars o' Benshie,
    The cairds o' Lour,
The souters o' Forfar
    The weavers o' Kirriemuir.

Bleary, Buckie, Backie, Jackie,
The East Town, the West Town,
The Quithill and Pitdwathie ;
Annamuck and Elfhill,
The Gowans and the Tannachie.
      This rhyme may be considered as a good example of those which consist only of an enumeration of grotesque names of places. It refers to a cluster of farms in the Brae of Glenbervie. The four first words are the familiar abbreviations of Blearerno, Buckie's Mill, Backhill, and Jacksbank.

DON AND DEE—( Aberdeenshire.)
A rood o' Don's worth twa o' Dee,
Except it be for fish and tree.
      The vale of the Don is more level and fertile than that of the Dee, which, however, is famous for its silvan banks and its salmon-fishery.

The Grole o' the Geerie [ Garioch ],
    The bowmen o' Mar ;
Upon the hill o' Bennochie,
    The Grole wan the war.
      This seems to refer to some early local contention, settled at the hill of Bennochie. The meaning of " Grole" has not been ascertained. It ought to be remarked, that the issue of the fight is equivocal, the last word being liable to be interpreted as waur, or the worse.

The four great landmarks on the sea,
Are Mount-Mar, Lochnagar, Clochnaben, and Bennochie.
      " Clochnaben, or the White Stone Hill, is remarkable for a protuberance of solid rock on its summit, about 100 feet in perpendicular height, appearing from the sea like a watch-tower, and forming an excellent landmark for coasting vessels."—F
ULLARTON'S Gazetteer of Scotland.

      " The brig of Don, near the auld town of Aberdeen, with its one arch and its black deep salmon-stream below, is in my memory as yesterday. I still remember, though perhaps I may misquote, the awful proverb which made me pause to cross it, and yet lean over it with a childish delight, being an only son, at least by the mother's side. The saying, as recollected by me, was this, but I have never heard or seen it since I was nine years of age :—

Brig of Balgownie, black's your wa' ;
Wi' a wife's ae son, and a mear's ae foal,
      Down ye shall fa' !"
BYRONNote to Don Juan.

It is said that a recent Earl of Aberdeen, who was the sole son of his mother, used to dismount from his horse, and walk along the bridge of Don, causing the animal to be brought after him by another person.

      " The Scottish vulgar, without having any very defined notion of their attributes, believe in the existence of an intermediate class of spirits residing in the air or in the waters ; to whose agency they ascribe floods, storms, and all such phenomena as their own philosophy cannot readily explain. They are supposed to interfere in the affairs of mortals, sometimes with a malevolent purpose, and sometimes with milder views.  * * *  When the workmen were engaged in erecting the ancient church of Old Deer, in Aberdeenshire, upon a small hill called Bissau, they were surprised to find that the work was impeded by supernatural obstacles. At length the Spirit of the River was heard to say—
' It is not here, it is not here,
  That ye shall build the church of Deer ;
  But on Taptillery,
  Where many a corpse shall lie.'

The site of the edifice was accordingly transferred to Taptillery, an eminence at some distance from the place where the building had been commenced."— Notes to Lay of Last Minstrel.
      The reader has seen an example of similar agency recorded with respect to the building of Cowthally Castle, in Lanarkshire. Another bears reference to the castle of Melgund in Forfarshire, the ancient and now ruined seat of a branch of the family of Maule. The situation of this building is remarkably low, and perhaps it is to this circumstance, setting the wits of the vulgar to account for it, that we are to ascribe the existence of the legend. It is said that the site originally chosen was a spot upon a neighbouring hill, but that, as the work was proceeding there, the labours of the builders were regularly undone every night, till at length, on a watch being set, a voice was heard to exclaim—
" Big it in a bog,
  Whare 'twill neither shake nor shog."
The order was obeyed, and behold the castle standing in the morass accordingly. It is of course easy to conceive reasons in human prudence for adopting this situation, as being the more defensible.
      A similar example of the agency of this class of spirits is cited with respect to the church of Fordoun in Kincardineshire. The recently existing structure was of great antiquity, though not perhaps what the monks represented it, namely, the chapel of Palladius, the early Christian missionary. The country people say that the site originally chosen for the building was the top of the Knock Hill, about a mile north-east from the village. After, as in the former case, the walls had been for some time regularly undone every night by unseen spirits, a voice was heard to cry—
" Gang farther down,
   To Fordoun's town."
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It is added that the new site was chosen by the throwing at random of a mason's hammer.
      The existence of legends bearing so near a resemblance in distant parts of the country, and applicable to different objects, affords curious matter of speculation.

      The inhabitants of Iona entertain a belief that the desolate shrine of St Columba shall yet be restored to its primitive glory and sanctity ; and, in support of the notion, quote no less credible authority than that of Columba himself, expressed in the following lines :—
An I, mo chridhe ! I mo ghraidh !
    An aite guth mhanach bidh geum ba ;
Ach mun tig an saoghal gu crich
    Bithidh I mar a bha !
      Thus literally translated—
In Iona of my heart, Iona of my love,
Instead of the voice of monks shall be lowing of cattle ;
But ere the world come to an end
Iona shall be as it was.
Implying, says Paterson, author of the Legend of Iona, that the island, after ages of ruin and neglect, shall again be the retreat of piety and learning. This sentiment seems to have struck Dr Johnson, without any knowledge of Columba's prophecy. " Perhaps in the revolutions of the world, Iona may be some time again the instructress of the western regions."— Jour. to West. Islands.
      In illustration of the above rhyme, it is necessary to state, that I (pronounced Ee) is the popular local appellation of Iona. The inscriptions on some of the tombstones among the ruins of the monastery, of a very ancient date, designate it Hi or Hij. I signifies island, and is synonymous with inch. Icolmkill, the name given to the island in honour of its celebrated resident, literally interpreted, signifies The Island of Columba of Cells. Iona, which may be called the classical appellation of the island, since it was adopted by Dr Johnson, signifies, in Gaelic, The Island of Waves—what must appear a most appropriate etymology to all who have seen the massy and frequent waves of the Atlantic break upon its shore.
       Another prophecy, still more flattering to Iona than the above, affirms, that " seven years before the end of the world, the sea, at one tide, shall cover the Western Islands and the green-headed Isla, while the Island of Columba shall swim," or continue afloat.
Seachd bliodhna roimh'n bhra a
Thig muir thar Eirinn re aon tra'
'S thar ile ghuirm ghlais
Ach snamhaidh I cholum chleirich !
Dr Smith of Campbelton has translated this prophecy, with peculiar elegance, though with latitudinarian freedom, in two English ballad verses:—
Seven years before that awful day,
    When time shall be no more,
A dreadful deluge shall o'ersweep
    Hibernia's mossy shore.

The green-clad Isla, too, shal sink
    While, with the great and good,
Columba's happier isle shall rear
    Her towers above the flood.

      " Eirinn," the word in the Gaelic rhyme for " Hibernia's mossy shore" in Dr Smith's version, signified, anciently, the Western Islands in general, Ireland included, though now the popular and poetical name of the sister island alone. In its more extended ancient sense, there is good reason for believing that it also included that part of the mainland of Scotland, namely, Argyleshire, and its adjacent territory, which was certainly peopled from Ireland, at an early period, by the tribes whose sovereign eventually extirpated the Picts, extended his dominion over the Lowlands, and was founder of the Scottish monarchy.
      The island of Iona is separated from Mull by a strait about a mile broad. An islet close to the Mull shore, immediately opposite to the ruins of Iona, is called Eilean nam ban, that is, The Women's Island. The name gives some countenance to a tradition of Columba, that he would not allow a woman or a cow to remain on his own island. The reason said have been assigned by him for this ungracious command, is characteristic of his well-known sanctity ; and, as is generally the case with remarkable sayings preserved by tradition, it is couched in a distich—
Far am bi bo bidh bean
'S far am bi bean bidh mallachadh.
Literally signifying—
Where there is a cow,
There will be a woman ;
And where there is a woman,
There will be mischief.
The saying has settled into a proverb, and is generally repeated as a good-humoured satire on the fair sex.

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MERSE—( Berwickshire ).
      Perhaps owing in part to alliteration, and partly to a consideration of their robust and warlike character, the grown male population of Southern Berwickshire are characterised from old time as—
The men o' the Merse.

Dunse dings a'.
      That is, beats or surpasses all other places ; but in what respect it would be difficult to imagine It may be mentioned, that this is only the opinion which the people of Dunse entertain of the town, as their neighbours, in general, scout the idea with great indignation. The Lads o' Dunse are celebrated by a lively Scotch tune bearing their name.

AE—( Dumfriesshire ).
The Lads of Ae.
      " Ae is a river in Dumfriesshire, having, of course, a glen, called Glenae, the male inhabitants of which were long famed for broils, battles, and feats of activity, whence called ' the Lads of Ae'—a phrase in some measure expressive of their wild and daring character. At every fair and wedding, in those days, it was customary to have a fight ; and the Lads of Ae were ever foremost in the fray.
      Before carts were used, or roads made in the country, and yet within the memory of man, the goods of merchants were all conveyed from one place to another on the backs of horses ; and the farmers of Ae, who were almost all employed in this business, often transported merchandise in this manner from Glasgow to Carlisle, Manchester, and various other towns in England. Wherever they went, through England or Scotland, their names were famous for cudgel-playing, boxing, and similar exercises.
      A number of the Lads of Ae, under one of the Dalziels of Glenae, fought at the famous battle of Dryfe Sands, where almost all were killed ; and not a man of them, it is said, would have escaped, had not young Kirkpatrick of Closeburn (who was to have been married to Dalziel's daughter), come to their assistance. A little after this instance of heroism, Kirkpatrick himself fell, greatly lamented."—Note to " The Battle of Dryfe Sands," by William McVitie, Dumfries : 1815.

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Auld Ayr.
" Auld Ayr ! wham ne'er a town surpasses,
   For honest men and bonnie lasses."—BURNS.

Glasgow people, Greenock folk, and Paisley bodies.
      These words imply gradations of dignity, the Paisley bodies being (how far deservedly would admit of much question) at the bottom of the scale. Some years ago, when a public dinner was given to Professor Wilson of Edinburgh in Paisley, which is his native place, on his speaking of it as a town containing such and such a number of souls, his friend Thomas Campbell, who sat by his side, whispered—" Bodies, you mean."

Glasgow for bells,
Lithgow for wells,
Falkirk for beans and pease.
      The numerous churches of Glasgow account for its share in this old rhyme. Linlithgow, lying in a hollow beside slopes which abound in springs, has several copious public fountains in the principal street, particularly one near the East Port, with a figure of St Michael, the patron saint of the town, over it, and the inscription, " St Michael is kind to strangers;" having evidently been designed for the refreshment of weary travellers. Another is of very complicated and rather elegant architecture, with many quaint figures carved in stone—being the substitute and fac-simile of a previous structure of unknown antiquity. Falkirk, situated close beside the rich alluvial lands called the Carse of Stirling, was from early times noted as a market for beans and pease.

The honest toun o' Musselburgh.
      The motto to the armorial bearings of Musselburgh is " Honesty." In the New Statistical Account of Scotland, Mr D. M. Moir, a native of the burgh who has acquired celebrity by his writings, gives the following note upon the subject:—
      " After a life of chivalry, heroism, and devotion to all the best interests of his native land, it was here that the renowned Randolph, Earl of Murray, the Regent of Scotland, died on the 20th July 1332. In consequence of preparations by the English to invade Scotland, he had assembled an army, and advanced to Colbrandspath, on the frontier of Berwickshire, when news of a naval armament from the south obliged him to return homewards, and provide for the defence of the capital. The tradition of the district says, that he had got the length of Walliford, on the eastern confines of the parish, when intelligence was brought to the magistrates that he was dangerously ill. They immediately took such measures as they best could to provide for his accommodation, and had him removed on a litter to the nearest house, within the ' east port' of the burgh. Relays of citizens are said to have watched over the great man until he died ; and every luxury that the place could supply is said to have been gratefully offered by them. In gratitude for their kind attentions, his nephew and successor, the Earl of Mar, requested that they should make some request regarding the extension of their municipal privileges, which he would be proud to be the means of extending. Whereupon they told him that ' they wished nothing ; and were happy to have had an opportunity of doing what they considered their duty.' The earl is reported to have here added, 'sure you are a set of very honest fellows.' The request of adopting ' Honesty' as the motto of the burgh is said then to have been made, and it is retained to this day. Be this as it may, the Earl of Mar granted or obtained for the Magistrates of Musselburgh the first charter, which conferred upon them a variety of local privileges, in 1340."

The gude toun of Edinburgh.
      Edinburgh is not called the good town in the decreet-arbitral pronounced in 1583 by King James, in confirmation of its mode of burgal government, nor even in an act of council dated 1658 ; but in an act of council dated 1678 it is so termed.
      One of the senses of " gude," given by Dr Jamieson, is, that it expresses rank, and means honourable. Thus, " gudeman" meant laird. The " Gudeman of North Berwick" (Melville's Memoirs, p. 122), is the same person who had been designed " Alexander Hume of North Berwick," at p. 93, where he is mentioned in common with " divers other barons and gentlemen." It is easy to see how a burgh, advanced to privilege by the royal fiat, would come to be styled " gude," or honourable ; and that Edinburgh, as at length the chief of them, would be so styled eminently.
     It is worthy of notice, that the keeper of the prison of Edinburgh was, during the seventeenth century, called " the Gudeman of the Tolbooth."*

  By tolbooth we now understand, in Scotland, a prison ; but the word in reality means a customhouse, or place for the collection of a tax. " He saw Matheu sittynge in a tolbothe."—Wickliffe's Translation of the Bible. The cause of the change of meaning is, that prisons became generally attached to the municipal court-houses, and in time formed the most conspicuous portion of such buildings.

The faithful town of Linlithgow.
      Alluding to a tree which appears in the coat-armorial, the motto of Linlithgow is " My fruit is fidelity to God and the king." Probably both epithet and motto relate to some good service rendered by the worthy burghers to one of the kings of Scotland, so long resident amongst them.

Out of the world and into Kippen.
      A proverb meant to show the seclusion and singularity of this district of Stirlingshire, of which the feudal lord was formerly styled King of Kippen.

Drucken Dumblane.
      This proverbial phrase, perhaps, arose from the alliteration, like other similar expressions ; but probably the only injustice of it is in its selecting Dumblane for a stigma which would be as deservedly borne by every town of the same size in Scotland.

Brosie Forfar.
      Brosie implies the plethoric appearance arising from excess of meat and drink. The legal gentlemen of this burgh, who, from its being a small county town, are remarkably numerous in proportion to the population, are characterised as the " drucken writers of Forfar." The town is a good deal annoyed with a lake in its neighbourhood, which the inhabitants have long had it in contemplation to drain, and which would have been drained long ago, but for the expensiveness of such an undertaking. At a public meeting held some years ago, for the discussion of this measure, the Earl of Strathmore said, that he believed the cheapest method of draining the lake would be, to throw a few hogsheads of good whisky into the water, and set the drucken writers of Forfar to drink it up !

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      The inhabitants of Falkland, in Fife, from their neighbourhood to a royal palace, must have had manners considerably different from those of other districts. This is testified, even in our own days, when all traces of the refinement or viciousness of a court have passed away as if they had never been, by a common expression in Fife:—
Ye're queer folk, no to be Falkland folk !

The lang toun o' Kirkaldy.
      Kirkaldy is, in reality, as Andrew Fairservice represents it, as long as any town in all England, with perhaps, a few exceptions ; but we shall, no more than that honest serving-man, advert to the trivial particular of its breadth.

Bonny Dundee.
      This appellation must date at least from the early part of the seventeenth century, as it appears as the title of the air which still bears the same name, in Skene's Manuscript, circa 1628.

The merry men o' the Mearns.

The Carles o' the Carse.
      William Lithgow, the traveller, in his very singular book, referring to a journey through Scotland in 1628, calls the Carse of Gowrie an earthly paradise ; but adds the following ungracious information :—" The inhabitants being only defective in affableness and communicating courtesies of natural things, whence sprung this proverb—the Carles (i. e., Churls) of the Carse" (p. 394).
      Pennant records an ill-natured proverb, applicable to the people of the Carse of Gowrie—that " they want water in the summer, fire in the winter, and the grace of God all the year round." A landed gentleman of the Carse used to complain very much of the awkwardness and stupidity of all the men whom he employed, declaring, that if he were only furnished with good clay, he believed he could make better men himself. This tirade got wind among the peasantry, and excited no small indignation. One of their class soon after found an opportunity of revenging himself and his neighbours upon the author, by a cut with his own weapon. It so happened that the laird one day fell into a quagmire, the material of which was of such a nature as to hold him fast, and put extrication entirely out of his own power. In his dilemma, observing a peasant approaching, he called out to him, and desired his assistance, in order that he might get himself relieved from his unpleasant confinement. The rustic, recognising him immediately, paid no attention to his entreaties, but passed carelessly by ; only giving him one knowing look, and saying, " I see you're making your men, laird ; I'll no disturb ye !"

The brave town of Aberdeen.

" Panmure with all his men did come ;
      The provost of braif Aberdene,
   Wi' trumpets and wi' touke of drum,
      Came schortly [lit.] in their armour schene."
The Battle of Harlaw.
      Spalding, the annalist, speaks often of the "brave town" of Aberdeen.

      This district was famed for the beauty of its female population, as expressed in the following Gaelic distich :—
Sleibhte riabhach
Nam ban boidheach.
In English,
" Russet Sleat of beauteous women."

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HERE is a nationality in districts as well as in countries ; nay, the people living on different sides of a streamlet, or of the same hill, sometimes entertain prejudices against each other, not less virulent than those of the inhabitants of the different sides of the British Channel or the Pyrenees. This has given rise, in Scotland, to an infinite number of phrases, expressive of vituperation, obloquy, or contempt, which are applied to the inhabitants of various places by those whose lot it is to reside in the immediate vicinity. Some of these are versified, and have the appearance of remnants of old songs ; others are merely couplets or single lines, generally referring to some circumstance in the history of the place mentioned. Almost all the counties of England have such standing jokes against each other. For instance, the men of Wiltshire are called Moon-rakers, in commemoration, it is said, of a party of them having once seen the moon reflected in a pool, and attempted to draw it to the shore by means of rakes, under the idea that it was a tangible and valuable object. The inhabitants, too, of a village in Wales, where the last prince was betrayed into the hands of Longshanks, are still called Traitors, by way of reproach. And, to call the people of Kent Kentish Men, is considered a disparagement, while the phrase Men of Kent has quite a contrary sense.
      To the Local Reproaches here commemorated, we have added a few which are applicable to professions.

LAUDER—( Berwickshire ).
Lousie Lauder !
      Lauder is a small and rather poor-looking town, but it must have been indebted chiefly to " apt alliteration's artful aid" for this odious epithet.

JEDBURGH—( Roxburghshire ).
Jethart justice—first hang a man and syne judge him.
      According to Crawford, in his Memoirs, the phrase Jedburgh justice took its rise in 1574, on the occasion of the Regent Morton there and then trying and condemning, with cruel precipitation, a vast number of people who had offended against the laws, or against the supreme cause of his lordship's faction. A different origin is assigned by the people. Upon the occasion, say they, of nearly twenty criminals being tried for one offence, the jury were equally divided in opinion as to a verdict, when one who had been asleep during the whole trial suddenly awoke, and, being interrogated for his vote, vociferated, " Hang them a'!"
      The English phrase " Lidford Law," commemorated by Grose, bears the same signification.

BOWDEN—( Roxburghshire ).
Tillieloot, Tillieloot, Tillieloot o' Bowden !*
    Our cat's kittled in Archie's wig ;
Tillieloot, Tillieloot, Tillieloot o' Bowden,
    Three o' them naked, and three o' them clad !

  Tillieloot—an old Scottish term for coward or chicken-heart.

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Elliots and Armstrongs, ride, thieves a' !
Johnstons and Jardines, 'light, thieves a' !
      The Elliots and Armstrongs predominate in the eastern districts of the border—the Johnstons and Jardines in the western. Their respective neighbours still taunt them with the above allusions to their ancient riding propensities, and though their border spears have long been converted into shepherds' crooks, find it still possible thereby to excite their wrath in no ordinary degree.
      Previous to the middle of the last century, as the Lords of Justiciary yearly passed on horseback between Jedburgh and Dumfries, through the vale of the Ewes, then impassable by any kind of vehicle, Armstrong of Sorbie used to bring out a large brandy bottle, from which he treated his friend the Lord Justice-Clerk (Sir Gilbert Elliot), and the other members of the cavalcade, to a dram. Upon one occasion, when the celebrated Henry Home (afterwards Lord Kames) for the first time went upon the circuit as advocate-depute, Armstrong, in a whisper, asked Lord Minto, " Whatna lang, black, dour-lookin' chiel that was they had got wi' them." " That," replied his lordship, " is a man come to hang a' the Armstrongs." " Then," retorted Sorbie, dryly, and turning away, " it's time the Elliots were ridin' !"
      The Johnstons, ironically characterised as gentle, were the most disorderly of all the clans in the south of Scotland. A rival chief, with whom they had long been at feud, once succeeded in cutting off a party, whose heads he caused to be severed from the bodies and put promiscuously into a sack. The bearer of the bloody burden, chuckling at the idea of having completely and for ever quelled the turbulence of the clan, said, significantly, as he slung the sack upon his shoulder, " Gree amang yersells, Johnstons !" which is still a proverbial expression in Annandale.
      So exclusively are some districts inhabited by people of these names, that there are several villages without any other. It is said that an English traveller, one winter night, coming to a border town called Lockerby, went to every house in search of lodgings, but without succeeding in rousing any of the inmates. At length an old woman looked over her window and asked what he wanted. He exclaimed, piteously, " Oh, is there no good Christian in this town, that will give shelter to a poor benighted traveller ?" " Na!" answered the woman, " We're a' Johnstons and Jardines here !" It is to be remarked that the mistake of the old dame was not unnatural, since the Christians are a pretty numerous clan in Cumberland, an adjacent district.

The Gule, the Gordon, and the Hoodie-craw,
Are the three warst things that Moray ever saw.
      The gool is a sort of darnel weed that infests corn. How far the rhyme has a general application to the family of Gordon would appear to admit of question. Pennant, who prints the stanza, says that it refers to the plundering expeditions of Lord Lewis Gordon, a son of the Marquis of Huntly, and associate of Montrose in his wars. The character of Lord Lewis, says the learned traveller, is contrasted with that of his commander in another popular verse:—
If ye wi' Montrose gae, ye'll get sick and wae eneugh ;
If ye wi' Lord Lewis gae, ye'll get rob and reive eneugh.
The depredations of the hoodie-craw speak for themselves.

Sutors ane, sutors twa,
Sutors in the Back Raw !
      The trade of the shoemaker abounds in Selkirk, insomuch that the burgesses in general pass by the appellation of the Sutors of Selkirk amongst their neighbours. On account of the predominance of this craft in the burgh, all who are admitted to the freedom of the corporation have a small parcel of birses [i. e. hog's bristles] presented to them at their inauguration, under the obligation to pass them through their mouths—a ceremony called licking the birse. For some inexplicable reason, the above couplet is opprobrious to the people of Selkirk ; and if any of our readers will parade the main street of the old burgh, crying it at a moderate pitch of voice, he may depend upon receiving as comfortable a lapidation as his heart could desire.

      It is said that the burgh of Lanark was, till very recent times, so poor, that the single butcher of the town, who also exercised the calling of a weaver, in order to fill up his spare time, would never venture upon the speculation of killing a sheep till every part of the animal was ordered beforehand. When he felt disposed to engage in such an enterprise, he usually prevailed upon the minister, the provost, and the town-council, to take shares ; but when no person came forward to bespeak the fourth quarter, the sheep received a respite till better times. The bellman, or skellyman, as he is there called, used to go through the streets of Lanark, with advertisements, such as are embodied in the following popular rhyme :—
Bell-ell-ell !
There's a fat sheep to kill !—
A leg for the provost,
    Another for the priest,
The bailies and deacons
    They'll tak the neist ;
And if the fourth leg we cannot sell,
The sheep it maun live, and gae back to the hill !
      This rhyme, which is well known over all Clydesdale, may excite the ridicule of people who live in large cities, and have the command of plentiful markets ; and the respectable little town of Lanark may thereby suffer considerably in the estimation of its more fortunate neighbours. Yet it is not, or was not, alone in this occasion of reproach. The ceremony of advertisement is still gone through, at the death of a sheep, in the town of Auchtermuchty. In many small towns, beef is unheard of, except once a-week. In a magazine for 1799, there is announced the death of a cadie, or market-porter, who was old enough to remember the time when the circumstance of beef being for sale in the market of the capital was publicly announced in the streets ! We need not, however, remind the reader, that it was then the practice of almost every family to lay in a stock of salted beef (called their mart) in November, sufficient to serve all the year round ; and that, consequently, few thought of having recourse to the public market for a supply. To such a system was this carried, that at least in one if not more farm-houses to our knowledge, the gudewife was in the habit of regularly salting the tripe of the mart, by way of provision for the Highland reapers whom she would require to entertain about ten months after.

THE CANONGATE—( Edinburgh ).
The lasses o' the Canongate,
    Oh, they are wondrous nice,
They winna gie a single kiss,
    But for a double price !
Gar hang them, gar hang them,
    Hich upon a tree,
For we'll get better up the gait
    For a bawbee.

      This rhyme, which seems intended for a satire upon the court ladies, was procured, about the end of the last century, from the recitation of a very aged lady of quality.

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THE NETHERBOW—( Edinburgh ).
     This ancient place, which is said to have been in former times chiefly occupied by weavers, is no more exempted than its ancient neighbour, the Canongate, from popular reproach, the following rhyme being still common among the children of Edinburgh :—
As I gaed up the Canongate,
    And through the Netherbow,
Four-and-twenty weavers
    Were swinging in a tow.
The tow gae a crack,
    The weavers gae a girn,
Fie, let me down again,
    I'll never steal a pirn.
I'll ne'er steal a pirn,
    I'll ne'er steal a pow ;*
Oh fie, let me down again,
    I'll steal nae mair frae you.

  A pow of lint is the quantity put upon the distaff at once.

Kiss your lucky—she lives in Leith !
      That this phrase is at least a century old, is proved by its being used in the poems of Allan Ramsay, who, in a letter, or rather a return of compliments, to his flatterer, Hamilton of Gilbertfield, thus elegantly expresses himself :—
" Gin ony sour-mou'd girning bucky
   Ca' me conceity keckling chucky,
   That we, like nags whase necks are yeuky,
                   Hae used our teeth,
   I'll answer fine—Gae kiss your lucky,
                   She dwalls i' Leith !"

      The poet, in a note, thus attempts an explanation : " It is a cant phrase, from what rise I know not ; but it is made use of when one thinks it not worth while to give a direct answer, or thinks himself foolishly accused."
      " Your lucky's mutch !" is, in Scotland, an ordinary exclamation, expressive of petulant contempt, or, as the case happens, of impatience under expostulation, advice, or reproof. The word lucky signifies an elderly woman—is sometimes used as a phrase of style, like mistress or goody—and has another and different sense, when added to the words daddy or minny, in which cases it signifies grandfather or grandmother. But it is in the more unusual sense of wife that we must suppose it to be used in the above instances. In Peeblesshire, if not also in other places, it is customary to throw the phrase into a sort of rhyme, thus:
Your luckie's mutch, and lingles at it !
Down the back, and buckles at it !

ABERLADY—( East Lothian ).
Stick us a' in Aberlady !
      The following laughable origin is assigned to this phrase of reproach :—An honest man, who dwelt in Aberlady, coming home one day, was suddenly convinced of what he had never before suspected—that his wife was not faithful to the nuptial vow. In a transport of rage, he drew his knife, and attempted to stab her, but she escaped his vengeance by running out to the open street, and taking refuge among the neighbours. The villagers all flocked about the incensed husband, and, as usual in cases of conjugal brawls, seemed disposed to take part with the wife. The man told his tale, with many protestations, expecting their sympathy to be all on his own side ; but what was his disappointment, when the women with one consent exclaimed, " If that be all you have to complain of, you might stick us a' in Aberlady ! "
      The inhabitants of Aberlady to this day feel aggrieved when this unlucky expression is cast up to them, and seldom fail to resent it with blows. Not many years ago, an English gentleman, residing with the late Earl of Haddington at Tyninghame, was incited by some wags at his lordship's table, after dinner, to go forth and cry, " Stick us a' in Aberlady," at the top of his voice, through the principal street of the village. He did so, and was treated for his pains with so severe a stoning, that he was carried to bed insensible, and it is said that he never altogether recovered from the effects of the frolic.

Like the bairns o' Fa'kirk ; they'll end ere they mend.
      This is a proverbial saying of ill-doing persons, as expressive of there being no hope of them. How the children of Falkirk came to be so characterised, it would be difficult now to ascertain. The adage has had the effect of causing the men of Falkirk jocularly to style themselves " the bairns :" and when one of them speaks of another as " a bairn," he only means that that other person is a native of Falkirk.

      This is a small village situated under the northern slope of the Ochill Hills, and for some considerable part of the year untouched by the solar rays. Hence the following rhyme :—
The lasses o' Exmagirdle
    May very weel be dun ;
For, frae Michaelmas till Whitsunday,
    They never see the sun.
  The name of Ecclesmagirdle was derived from the place of worship, and seems to signify " Church of St Grizel." Ma is Gaelic for Sanctus. Camerarius has omitted St Grizelda in his Catalogue of the Saints of Scotland ; but many saints had places dedicated to them here who were not canonised as saints of other countries.

Pickle till him in Pathhead.
Ilka bailie burns another !

KIRRIEMUIR—( Forfarshire ).
Far are ye gae'n ?—To Killiemuir !
Faare never ane weel fure,
         But for his ain penny-fee.
      Where are you going? To Kirriemuir ! where never one well fared, but for his own penny-fee.

Baron of Buchlyvie,
May the foul fiend drive ye,
And a' to pieces rive ye,
    For building sic a town,
Where there's neither horse meat nor man's meat,
    Nor a chair to sit down.
      Buchanan, Baron of Buchlyvie, was a prince of the blood-royal of the house of Kippen ; and the rhyme seems to have been intended as a satire upon the wretched village which formed his principality.

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Tide, tide, whate'er betide,
There'll aye be Haigs in Bemerside.
      " This family," says Sir Robert Douglas,†


"is of great antiquity in the south of Scotland ; and in our ancient writings the name is written De Haga. Some authors are of opinion that they are of Pictish extraction ; others think that they are descended from the ancient Britons ; but as we cannot pretend, by good   p.24 /   authority, to trace them from their origin, we shall insist no further upon traditionary history, and deduce their descent, by indisputable documents, from Petrus de Haga, who was undoubtedly proprietor of the lands and barony of Bemerside, in Berwickshire, and lived in the reigns of King Malcolm IV, and William the Lion, which last succeeded to the crown of Scotland in 1165, and died in 1214."
      From this Petrus de Haga, the present proprietor of Bemerside is nineteenth in lineal descent. The above rhyme, which testifies the firm belief entertained by the country people in the perpetual lineal succession of the Haigs, is ascribed to no less an authority than that of Thomas the Rhymer, whose patrimonial territory was not far from Bemerside. "The grandfather of the present Mr Haig had twelve daughters before his wife brought him a male heir.*

  This gentleman, who bore the Scriptural name of Zorobabel, used to go out once or twice a-day to a retired place near his house, fall down on his knees, and pray that God would send him a son.

The common people trembled for the credit of their favourite soothsayer. The late Mr Haig was at length born, and their belief in the prophecy confirmed beyond a shadow of doubt."—Minst. Scot. Bord., vol. iii. p. 209. Apparently the family itself has had not less respect for the supposed prophecy, for their motto, " Tide what may," must have been adopted with a regard to it.
      The family of De Haga is mentioned in The Monastery, by Captain Clutterbuck, who says that his learned and all-knowing friend, the Benedictine, could tell to a day when they came into the country. There is a common saying in the south of Scotland—" Ye're like the lady o' Bemerside ; ye'll no sell your hen in a rainy day"—probably alluding to some former Mrs Haig, of more than usual worldly wisdom.
      There is a parody, or rather additional couplet to the above rhyme, disparaging a family of dull good men, resident in the neighbourhood of Bemerside—

Befa', befa', whate'er befa',
There'll aye be fules in —— ha'.
A story is told of the representative of this hopeful family having once hinted to his neighbour, the Laird of Bemerside, the disagreeable likelihood of the original prophecy failing, on account of his wanting a male heir ; when the other retorted, in high pique, that there was little chance of the part which related to —— hall ever bringing any discredit on the prophet.

The wode Laird of Laristone
Slew the worm of Worme's Glen,
And wan all Linton parochine.
      This rhyme, popular in Roxburghshire, relates to a traditionary story connected with the noble family of Somerville. It is said that William de Somerville, the third of the family after its settlement in Scotland, obtained the lands of Linton in the above country, in 1174, from King William the Lion, as a reward for killing a serpent which infested the district. The family crest appears to bear reference to such an act, being—"on a wheel, or, a dragon, vert spouting fire." There is also, over the door of Linton church, a rude and now much defaced sculpture, containing the representation of a horseman in armour charging with a lance a ferocious animal, but of the four-footed kind. The people likewise point to the scene of the alleged incident, being a small hollow called the Worm's Glen, about a mile from the same church.
      Whatever truth there may be in the story, it is related with sufficient circumstantiality by a noble representative of the family, who compiled a memoir of his house about the middle of the seventeenth century, being the work published a few years ago under the title of the Memorie of the Somervilles.
      "In the parish of Linton, within the sheriffdom of Roxburgh, there happened to breed a hideous monster in the form of a worm,*

  Orme, or worm, is, in the ancient Norse, the generic name for serpents.

so called and esteemed by the country people (but in effect has been a serpent, or some such creature), in length three Scots yards, and somewhat bigger than an ordinary man's leg, with a head more proportionable to its length than greatness, in form and colour to our common muir-edders.
      This creature, being a terror to the country people, had its den in a hollow piece of ground, upon the side of a hill south-east from Linton Church, some more than a mile, which unto this day is known by the name of the Worme's Glen, where it used to rest and shelter itself ; but when it sought after prey, then this creature would wander a mile or two from its residence, and make prey of all sort of bestial that came in its way, which it easily did, because of its lowness, creeping among the bent heather, or grass, wherein that place abounded much, by reason of the meadow-ground, and a large flow moss, fit for the pasturage of many cattle (being naturally of itself of no swift motion) ; it was not discerned before it was master of its prey, instantly devouring the same, so that the whole countrymen thereabout were forced to remove their bestial, and transport themselves three or four miles from the place, leaving the country desolate : neither durst any passenger go to the church or market upon that road, for fear of this beast. Several attempts were made to destroy it by shooting of arrows, throwing of darts, none daring to approach so near as to make use of a sword or lance ; but all their labours were in vain. These weapons did sometimes slightly wound, but were never able to kill this beast ; so that all men apprehended the whole country should have been destroyed, and that this monster was sent as a just judgment from God to plague them for their sins. During this fear and terror amongst the people, John Somerville, being in the south, and hearing strange reports about this beast, was, as all young men are, curious to see it; and, in order thereto, he comes to Jedburgh, where he found the whole inhabitants in such a panic fear, that they were ready to desert the town. The country people that were fled there for shelter had told so many lies at first, that it increased every day, and was beginning to get wings. Others, who pretended to have seen it in the night, asserted it was full of fire, and in time would throw it out ; with a thousand other ridiculous stories, which the timorous multitude are ready to invent on such an occasion ; though, to speak the truth, the like was never known to have been seen in this nation before. However, this gentleman continues his first resolution of seeing this monster, befall him what will : therefore, he goes directly to the place about the dawning of the day, being informed that, for ordinary, this serpent came out of her den about the sun-rising, or near the sun-setting, and wandered the field over to catch somewhat. He was not long near to the place when he saw this strange beast crawl forth of her den ; who, observing him at some distance (being on horseback), it lifted up its head with half of the body, and a long time stared him in the face, with open mouth, never offering to advance or come to him ; whereupon he took courage, and drew much nearer, that he might perfectly see all its shapes, and try whether or not it would dare to assault him ; but the beast, turning in a half circle, returned to the den, never offering him the least prejudice : whereby he concludes this creature was not so dangerous as the report went, and that there might be a way found to destroy the same.
      Being informed of the means that some men had used for that end already, and that it was not to be assaulted by sword or dagger (the ordinary arms, with the lance, at that time), because of the near approach these weapons required, if the beast was veno-   p.25 /   mous, or should cast out any such thing, he might be destroyed without a revenge. Being apprehensive of this hazard, for several days he marks the outgoing, creeping and entering of this serpent into her den, and found, by her ordinary motion, that she would not retire backward, nor turn but in half a circle at least, and that there was no way to kill her but by a sudden approach, with some long spear, upon horseback ; but then he feared, if her body was not penetrable, he might endanger not only his horse's life, which he loved very well, but also his own, to no purpose. To prevent which, he falls upon this device (having observed that when this creature looked upon a man she always stared him in the face, with open mouth), in causing make a spear near twice the ordinary length, ordering the same to be plated with iron at least six quarters from the point upwards, that no fire, upon a sudden, might cause it to fall asunder : the which being made according to his mind, he takes his horse, well acquaint with the lance, and, for some days, did exercise him with a lighted peat on the top of the lance, until he was well accustomed both with the smell, smoke, and light of the fire, and did not refuse to advance on the spur, although it blew full in his face. Having his horse managed according to his mind, he caused make a little slender wheel of iron, and fix it so, within half a foot of the point of his lance, that the wheel might turn round on the least touch, without hazarding upon a sudden breaking of the lance.
      All things being fitted according to his mind, he gave advertisement to the gentlemen and commons in that country, that he would undertake to kill that monster, or die in the attempt, prefixing a day for them to be spectators. Most of them looked upon this promise as a rodomontade ; others as an act of madness, flowing from an inconsiderate youth ; but he concerned not himself with their discourses. The appointed day being come, somewhat before the dawning of the day, he placed himself, with a stout and resolute fellow, his servant (whom he gained by a large reward to hazard with him in this attempt), within half an arrow-flight, or thereby, to the den's mouth, which was no larger than easily to admit the outgoing and re-entering of this serpent, whom now he watched with a vigilant eye upon horseback, having before prepared some long small and hard peats, bedaubed with pitch, roset, and brimstone, fixed with small wire upon the wheel at the point of his lance ; these being touched with fire, would instantly break out into a flame. The proverb holds good, that the fates assist bold men ; for it was truly verified in him, fortune favouring the hardy enterprise of this young man. The day was not only fair, but extremely calm, no wind blowing but a breath of air that served much to his purpose.
      About the sun-rising, this serpent, or worm (as by tradition it is named), appeared, with her head and some part of her body without the den ; whereupon the servant, according to direction, set fire to the peats upon the wheel at the top of the lance, and instantly this resolute gentleman put spurs to his horse, advanced with a full gallop, the fire still increasing, placed the same with the wheel, and almost the third part of his lance, directly into the serpent's mouth, which went down her throat into her belly, which he left there, the lance breaking with the rebound of his horse, giving her a deadly wound ; who, in the pangs of death (some part of her body being within the den), so great was her strength, that she raised up the whole ground that was above her, and overturned the same to the furthering of her ruin, being partly smothered by the weight thereof.
      Thus was she brought to her death in the way and manner rehearsed, by the bold undertaking of this noble gentleman, who, besides a universal applause, and the great rewards he received from his gracious prince, deserved to have this action of his engraven on tables of brass, in a perpetual memorial of his worth. What that unpolished age was capable to give, as a monument to future generations, he had, by having his effigy, in the posture he performed this action, cut out in stone, and placed above the principal church-door of Linton Kirk, with his name and surname, which neither length of time nor casual misfortune has been able to obliterate or demolish, but that it stands entire and legible to this very day; with remembrances of the place where this monster was killed, called the Serpent's Den, or, as the country people named it, the Worme's Glen, whose body, being taken from under the rubbish, was exposed for many days to the sight of the numerous multitude, that came far and near from the country to look upon the dead carcass of this creature, which was so great a terror to them while it lived, that the story, being transmitted from father to son, is yet fresh with most of the people thereabout, albeit it is upward of five hundred years since this action was performed."
      At another part of the work, the author mentions a popular misconception of the knight who performed this enterprise. " Some inhabitants of the south," says he, "attributing to William, Baron of Linton, what was done by his father, albeit they have nothing to support them but two or three lines of a rude rhyme, which, when any treats of this matter, they repeat—

Wood Willie Sommervill,
Kill'd the worm of Wormandaill,
For whilk he had all the lands of Lintoune,
    And sex mylles them about."

'Tween Wigton and the town o' Ayr,
    Portpatrick and the Cruives o' Cree,
Nae man need think for to bide there,
    Unless he court wi' Kennedie.
      This rhyme is remarkably expressive of the unlimited power wielded by a set of feudal chiefs over a subject territory, before the laws of the country were enforced for the protection of individual liberty. The district described is one of full sixty by forty miles, in the south-west province of Scotland. The chief of the Kennedies was the Earl of Cassillis, seated at Cassillis Castle, near Maybole in Ayrshire. The principal subordinate chiefs, possessing scarcely less power, were Kennedy of Colzean, direct ancestor of the present Earl of Cassilis (Marquis of Ailsa), and Kennedy of Bargeny. The Lairds of Girvanmains, Baltersan, Kirkmichael, Knockdon, Dunure, and Drumellan, were but a selection of the lesser barons of the name. A memoir of the family, written about the time of the Revolution, by Mr William Abercromby, minister of Maybole, after enumerating these and other Kennedies of note, says, " But this name is under great decay, in comparison of what it was ane age agoe ; at which time they flourished so in power and number, as to give occasion to this rhyme :—
'Twixt Wigtowne and the town of Aire,
    And laigh down by the Cruves of Cree,
You shall not get a lodging there,
    Except ye court a Kennedy."*
  See Account of the Kennedies, edited by R. Pitcairn, Esq. 4to. Edinburgh : 1830.

      It is said that the progenitor of this family, at some period antecedent to his acquisition of the estate, being applied to by some famished drovers for a fardle or cake of household bread, presented them with no fewer than eight ; whereupon, like the witches in Macbeth, they saluted him in the style of his future dignity, by pronouncing the following punning rhyme upon his   p.26 /   beneficence, which is still well known in Lanarkshire, and especially in the parish of Lesmahagow :—
Aucht fardle sin' ye gie,
Auchty fardle ye shall be !

      The family of Leslie, to which belong two of the Scottish peerages, traces its origin to Bartholomew, a Flemish chief, who settled with his followers in the district of Garioch, in Aberdeenshire, in the reign of William the Lion. He took the name " De Lesley," from the place where he settled. The heralds, however, have an old legend, representing the first man of the family as having acquired distinction and a name at once, by overcoming a knight in battle at a spot between a less lee and a greater :
Between the Less-Lee and the Mair,
He slew the knight, and left him there.
      The family of Leslie is one which may be said to have had a brief period of unusual distinction. In the reign of Charles I., the Earl of Rothes, chief of the family, was a political character of the first consequence. At the same time, some gentlemen of his name were gathering laurels in foreign service. One of these was a Count Leslie, in the service of the Emperor of Germany. Other two were Alexander and David Leslie, who espoused the opposite side of a great quarrel, and served Gustavus Adolphus, the heroic King of Sweden. Alexander, being chosen by the Scottish Covenanters to head their army in 1639, had the good fortune to receive the reward of a coronet from the king against whom he led his troops : he was made Earl of Leven, by Charles I., in 1641. David soon after obtained high command in the army of the Scottish estates, fought well at Long Marston Moor, and overthrew Montrose at Philiphaugh. A few years afterwards ( 1650 ), when the Estates took up the cause of Charles II. as a limited and covenanted monarch, and raised an army to repel the invasion of Cromwell, David Leslie was appointed to the chief command, and it was from no failure on his part that this force was overthrown disgracefully at Dunbar. Tradition preserves a rhyme respecting him and the principal officers associated with him :
Leslie for the kirk,
    And Middleton for the king ;
But deil a man can gie a knock
    But Ross and Augustine.*
  Middleton, one of the ablest officers of his time, was afterwards infamous in Scotland as the minister of Charles II. in 1662, when Episcopacy was established. Ross was a celebrated captain of horse in the service of the Parliament, anno 1650, and distinguished himself so much at the battle of Kerbester, where Montrose was taken, that he received the thanks of that body, besides a pecuniary gratuity. Augustine, by birth a High German, but who seems to have entertained a sentiment of regard for Scotland almost amounting to patriotism, had the command of a troop in the same army, and rendered himself famous by some very heroic exploits performed against the English army under Cromwell.

Ultimately, on Charles being restored to all his kingdoms, David Leslie was made a peer, by the title of Lord Newark—although, as a bitter Cavalier remarked with regard to his former proceedings as the parliamentary leader, " he might rather have been hangit for his auld wark."
      Other Leslies gained honour and fortune in continental service ; and hence several counts of the name now exist in Germany, besides many considerable families in France, Russia, and Poland. It is also worthy of note, that Bishop Leslie, the intrepid friend of Queen Mary, and Charles Leslie, author of the Short and Easy Method with the Deists, were cadets of the house of Leslie of Balquhain in Aberdeenshire.

So many, so good, as of the Douglasses have been,
Of one surname was ne'er in Scotland seen.
—HUME'S History of the House of Douglas.

Guthrie o' Guthrie,
    Guthrie o' Gaiggie,
Guthrie o' Taybank,
    An' Guthrie o' Craigie.
      This rhyme refers to the respectable old Forfarshire family of Guthrie, in its main line and principal branches. The following is the traditionary account of the origin of the Guthries :—One of the kings of Scotland, when on an aquatic excursion to the northern part of his dominions, was overtaken by a storm, and driven ashore on the east coast, somewhere between Arbroath and Montrose. Getting in safety to land, the king, like the pious Æneas under similar circumstances, turned his thoughts upon the means of acquiring food, wherewith to satisfy his own hunger and that of his attendants, both considerably sharpened by the sea-breeze. He had not, however, the good fortune of the Trojan hero, in seeing
   ——" tres littore cervos
——errantes ;"
nothing appeared on the bare Scottish coast but a poor fisherwoman, who was cleaning some small fishes she had just caught. " Will you gut one to me, goodwife?" said the monarch. " I'll gut three !" being her immediate answer, the king exclaimed, in rapture at her heartiness and hospitality,
" Then, Gut three
   Your name shall be !"
and immediately put her family in possession of the adjoining lands, which yet continue to be the property of her descendant, the present Guthrie of Guthrie.

Duke of Atholl—king in Man,
And the greatest man in a' the land !
      The idea expressed in this popular rhyme is supported by high authority. " I shall conclude with the opinion of all the great lawyers in England who have had occasion to mention the Isle of Man, viz., that it is a royal fief of the crown of England, and the only one, so that I may venture to say, without censure, that, if his Grace the Duke of Atholl is not the richest subject the King of Britain has, he is the greatest man in his Majesty's dominions."—N
ISBET'S Heraldry, ii. 201.

      A perpetuity of Frasers is promised to Philorth, by the following rhyme :—
As lang as there's a cock in the north,
There'll be a Fraser in Philorth.
Philorth at present belongs to Fraser Lord Saltoun.

Cnoic is uisgh is Alpanich,
An truir bu shine 'bha 'n Albin.
Literal Translation.
Hills, and waters, and Alpins,
The eldest three in Albin.
      The Macgregors are esteemed in the Highlands as one of the oldest, if not the very oldest, of the clans. This is implied by the above rhyme, in which they are designated as Alpanich, with reference to their descent from Alpin, a king of Scotland in the ninth century. They derive their descent, and also their name, from Gregory, a king who was grandson to   p.27 /  (image of page 27)   Alpin, and whose posterity would have continued to enjoy the crown, but for the law of tanistry, which preferred a full-grown nephew or uncle to an infant son. Their being thus dispossessed of the sovereignty is adverted to in an old Gaelic rhyme, of which Mr Alexander Campbell has given a translation, in his edition of McIntosh's Gaelic Proverbs :—

Sliochd nan righribh duchaisach
Bha shios an Dun staiphnis
Aig an robh crun na h' Alb' o thus
'S aig a bheil duchas fathasd ris.

The royal hereditary family,
Who lived down at Dunstafnage,
To whom at first the crown of Albin belonged,
And who have still an hereditary claim to it.


      This may be the most appropriate place to introduce a fragment of ancient wisdom, which tradition ascribes to one of the family of Barclay of Mathers, who flourished early in the sixteenth century.*
  This was the family which, a hundred years later, produced the celebrated author of the " Apology for the Quakers."

The rhymes, which seem to have some claim upon a place in this collection, though they do not strictly fall under any of the heads into which it has been divided, are usually called by the above title, being designed by the composer as an advice to his son and heir:—
If thou desire thy house lang stand,
And thy successors brook thy land,
Above all things, love God in fear,
Intromit not with wrangous gear ;
Nor conquess† naething wrangously ;
With thy neighbour keep charity :
See that thou pass not thy estate ;
Duly obey the magistrate ;
Oppress not, but support the puir ;
To help the commonweal take cure.
Use nae deceit—mell not with treason,
And to all men do right and reason.
Both unto word and deed be true,
All kind of wickedness eschew.
Slay nae man, nor thereto consent : ‡
Be not cruel, but patient.
Ally aye in some gude place,
With noble, honest, godly race.
Hate lechery, and all vices flee ;
Be humble ; haunt gude company.
Help thy friend, and do nae wrang ;
And God shall cause thy house stand lang.

  Acquire, specially applicable to land.
    ‡   An advice highly characteristic of the age of the author.

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The gay Gordons.
      The Gordons were so characterised by the people and by the old ballad-writers. In that of the Battle of Otterburn, they are styled " the Gordons gude;" but in that case rhyme, as well as the occasion, might determine the poet:—
" The Gordons gude, in English bluid,
Did dip their hose and shoon."
There is an old ballad, in which they are styled gay, and in which a fine trait of their personal manners is preserved.

Four-and-twenty nobles sit in the king's ha',
Bonnie Glenlogie is the flower amang them a':

In came Lady Jean, skipping on the floor,
And she has chosen Glenlogie 'mong a' that was there.

She turn'd to his footman, and thus she did say—
" Oh ! what is his name, and where does he stay ?"

" His name is Glenlogie, when he is from home :
He is of the gay Gordons, his name it is John."

" Glenlogie, Glenlogie, an you will prove kind,
My love is laid on you, I'm telling my mind."

He turn'd about lightly, as the Gordons does a',
" I thank you, Lady Jean, my love's promised awa'."

She call'd on her maidens, her bed for to make,
Her rings and her jewels all from her to take.

In came Jeanie's father, a wae man was he,
Says, " I'll wed you to Drumfendrich, he has mair gold than he."

Her father's own chaplain, being a man of great skill,
He wrote him a letter, and indited it well.

The first lines he look'd at, a light laugh laugh'd he ;
But ere he read through it, the tears blinded his e'e.

Oh ! pale and wan look'd she when Glenlogie came in,
But even rosy grew she when Glenlogie sat down.

" Turn round, Jeanie Melville—turn round to this side,
And I'll be the bridegroom, and you'll be the bride."

Oh ! 'twas a merry wedding, and the portion down told
Of bonnie Jeanie Melville, who was scarce sixteen years old.

      Alexander de Seton, first Earl of Huntly, having been employed by King James II., with whom he was in high favour, to suppress several rebellions in the north, was successful in defeating that of the Earl of Crawford, at Brechin, in 1452, but was subsequently discomfited at Dunkinty by the Earl of Moray. Hume of Godscroft, in his History of the House of Douglas, gives a very interesting account of the latter incident. After the battle of Brechin, " Huntly," says he, " had the name of the victory, yet could not march forward to the king as he intended, and that partly because of his great losse of his men, partly for that he was advertised that Archibald Douglas, Earl of Murray, had invaded his lands, and burnt the Piele of Strabogie. Wherefore he returned speedily to his own country, which gave Crawford leisure and occasion to pour out his wrath against them who had so treacherously forsaken them, by burning and wasting their lands. Huntly being returned to the north, not only recompensed the damage done to him by the Earl of Murray, but also compelled him out of his whole bounds of Murray ; yet it was not done without conflict and mutual harm ; for Huntly, coming to Elgin in Murray, found it divided—the one half standing for him, the other half (and almost the other side of the street) standing for the Earl of Murray ; wherefore he burnt the half which was for Murray ; and hereupon rose the proverb—Halfe done, as Elgin was burnt.*

  It is observable from this, that Elgin, like some old Scottish burghs at the present day, then could boast of but one street.

While he is there, Murray assembled his power, which consisting mostly of footmen, he sate down upon a hill some two or three miles off, called the Drum of Pluscardine, which was inaccessible to the horsemen. Huntly forrowed ( plundered ) his lands, to draw him from the hill, or at least to be revenged of him that way, thinking he durst not come into the plain fields, and not thinking it safe to assault him in a place of such disadvantage. But Murray, seeing Huntly's men so scattered, came out of his strength, and falling upon four or five thousand horsemen, drave [lit.] them into a bogue, called the Bogue of Dunkinte, in the bounds of Pittendriech, full of quagmires, so deep, that a speere may be thrust into them and not find the bottom. In this bogue many were drowned, the rest slain, few or none escaping of that company. There are yet (1646) to be seene swords, steel-caps,   p.28 /   and such other things, which are found now and then by the country people who live about it. They made this round rhyme of it afterwards :—

Where left thou thy men, thou Gordon so gay ?
In the Bogue of Dunkintie, mowing the hay !"

The greedy Campbells.
      The Campbells seem to have gained this odious designation in consequence of their rapid acquisition of lands in the Highlands immediately after their settlement in the country. Political talent has always been a distinguishing characteristic of the leaders of this clan, and is supposed in the Highlands, where such a quality was always despised, to have contributed more to their advancement in power and wealth, than the more honourable qualifications of a brave spirit and a strong arm. Hence they are also styled fair and false. The most remarkable feature in the history of this clan, is its constant attachment, since the beginning of the Civil War, to the cause of civil and religious liberty, which gave rise to a saying of King Charles II., " That there never was a rebellion in Scotland without either a Campbell or a Dalrymple at the bottom of it."

      The Dalrymples, who share in the above accusation, and who, like the Campbells, owe the power which they have had in Scotland for upwards of a century to political talent, have always been noted for their gross wit, which gave rise to their popular appellation—
The dirty Dalrymples.
      The name Dalrymple, in Scotland pronounced Darumple, seems to have always been considered in a ridiculous light, probably on account of the middle syllable of the mispronounced word. In proof of this, and to show that the prejudice is not deficient in antiquity, an anecdote is told of King James V. A court gentleman having complained to that monarch that he was obliged to change his name, for the sake of an estate, into one less fine in sound or honourable in history, the monarch said, " Hoot awa, man ! if ony body wad make me heir to sic a braw estate, I wadna care though they should ca' me Darumple ! "
      When upon the subject of the Dalrymples, it may be worth while to allude to their very common Christian name, Hew. This is not Hugh, as might be supposed, but a peculiar word, which is said to have originated in the following circumstance :—One of the early kings of Scotland, after an unsuccessful battle, took refuge in the Bass Island, whither he was pursued by his enemies. The king planted himself on the very top of the rock, where his pursuers could not reach his person without climbing one by one up a steep ascent. His only attendant, a Dalrymple, stood in the gap, and as every successive assailant came up, hewed him down with a sword. The king, seeing his safety depend on the strength of one man, called out, " Hew, Dalrymple, hew !" and his defender, thus encouraged, accordingly hewed away at them with all his force, till the whole were dispatched. The monarch, in gratitude, gave him lands, and ordained Hew to be thenceforth his first name. In allusion, moreover, to this story, the crest of the Dalrymples is a rock proper.

The gallant Grahams.
      As such, they give the name to a popular air. So, also,
" Oh ! the Grahams, the gallant Grahams,
       Wad the gallant Grahams but stand by me,
   The dogs might douk in English bluid,
       Ere a foot's breadth I wad flinch or flee !"
Finlay's Old Ballads.
      A ballad in the Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border bears the name of " The Gallant Grahams." When we think of Montrose, Dundee, and Lynedoch, can the claims of the family to this title be disputed ?

The light Lindsays.
      The Lindsays were a prompt and sprightly clan, celebrated for their warlike achievements. At the battle of Otterburn, their chief distinguished himself by personal prowess. The whole clan seems to have made a conspicuous figure on this memorable occasion:

" He chose the Gordons and the Grahams,          
       With them the Lindsays light and gay.
*         *         *         *         
*         *         *         *         
   The Lindsays flew like fire about,
        Till a' the fray was done."
Ballad of  " The Battle of Otterburn."

The manly Morisons.
      This is, or was, especially applicable to a family which had been settled for a long period at Woodend, in the parish of Kirkmichael, in Dumfriesshire, and become remarkable for the handsomeness of its cadets.

The pudding Somervilles.
      In illustration of this phrase, we quote a passage in the manuscript Memoirs of the Somervilles, which was omitted in the printed work, at the request of the late Lord Somerville, who thought it too discreditable, or ridiculous, for publication.
      " Noe house of any subject of what degree soever, for hospitalitie, came near to Cowthally, and that for the space of two hundreth years. I shall, to make good this assertione, adduce noe meaner witnesses than the testimonie of three of our kings, viz., King James III., IV., and V. The first of these, in the storie of the Speates and Raxes, asserted that Lord S.'s kitchen bred moe cookes and better than any other nobleman's house he knew within his kingdom. The second, because of the great preparatione that was made for his coming to Cowthally, at the infare of Sir John of Quathquan, gave the epithete or nickname of L
ORD PUDDINGS to Lord Somervill, and, out of ane pleasant humer, would need persuade him to carry a black and white pudding in his armes, which gave the first occasione that to this day wee are still named the PUDDING SOMERVILLES. For King James V., from the eighteine year of his age to the threttie-two, he frequented noe nobleman's house soe much as Cowthally. It is true there was a because. The castle of Crawfuird was not far off, and it is weill enough knowne, as this king was a gallant prince, soe was he extremely amorous. But that which I take notice of as to my purpose, is, that his majestie very frequently, when occasione offered to speak of housekeeping, asserted, that he was sure to be weill and heartily intertained at Cowthally by his Mother Maitland, for so the king gratiously and familiarly pleased to design the Lady S., then wife to Lord Heugh the first of that name. Albeit there needs no farther testimonies ; yet take this for a confirmatione of ther great housekeeping, that it is uncontravertedly asserted they spent a cow every day of the year ; for which cause, it is supposed, the house was named Cow-dayly."

The haughty Hamiltons.

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The sturdy Armstrongs.

The haughty Humes,
The saucy Scotts,
The cappit* Kers,
The bauld Rutherfords.
      Constantly associated as in one distich, though no rhyme is discernible.

  Capriciously irritable.

The gentle Johnstons.
      This must have been ironical. It is at least little in consonance with the epithet bestowed upon them by a distinguished modern poet :
" The rough-riding Scott and the rude Johnston."

      The house of Angus was characterised as
The red Douglas ;
that of Liddesdale as:
The black Douglas.
     " The last battell the Earl of Douglas was at, the Earl of Angus discomfited him ; so that it became a proverb, ' The Red Douglas put down the Black.' " —Hume's Hist. House of Douglas.

The lucky Duffs.
      " Duff's Luck" is proverbial in Aberdeenshire, on account of the good fortune which seems to have attended numerous members of this family, in the acquisition of lands in that district.

Tall and proud.
      The Setons were a fair-complexioned race, as appears from the family pictures in the possession of Mr Hay of Drumelzier ; wherefore their characteristic pride does not agree with a common rhyme respecting complexions :—
Lang and lazy,
Little and loud,
Red and foolish,
Black and proud.

The black Macraes o' Kintail.

The wild Macraws.
      Macrae and Macraw are but variations of the same name. This clan is said to be the most unmixed race in the Highlands, a circumstance which seems to be attended with quite a contrary effect from what might have been expected, the Macraes and Macraws being the handsomest and most athletic men beyond the Grampians.

The handsome Hays.

Bluidy Foulis o' Colinton.
      This popular expression must have originated at the time of the Persecution—the latter years of the reign of Charles II. and James II.—when Sir James Foulis of Colinton was Lord Justice-Clerk, and of course instrumental in the deaths of the poor Covenanters.

The fause Monteiths.
      Originating, probably, in the treachery of Wallace's friend. From horror at the offence of Sir John Monteith, it was common in Scotland, till the last age, when presenting bread to a Monteith, to give it with the wrong side of the bannock uppermost.

The trusty Boyds.
      So at least characterised by Henry the Minstrel.

The bauld Frasers

The proud Macneils.

Fiery and quick-tempered.

The brave Macdonalds.
      A hardly-earned and well-deserved epithet, which we do not consider invalidated by a rhyme popular among the Macgregors :—
Grighair is croic,
Domnuil is freuc.
That is,
Macgregor as the rock,
Macdonald as the heather.

The muckle-mou'ed Murrays.
      The Murrays here meant are a branch of the family long settled in Peeblesshire, and of which a sub-branch has for two centuries possessed the baronial title of Elibank. Sir Gideon Murray, who lived in the time of James VI., and whose son was the first Lord Elibank, had a daughter, Agnes, to whom tradition ascribes a very large share of the family feature. She became the wife of Sir William Scott of Harden, under circumstances of a ludicrous nature, which James Hogg has wrought up in one of his best ballads—the youth having been caught in a foray upon Sir Gideon's lands, and obliged to marry the muckle-mouthed lady in order to save his neck. All who remember Alexander, seventh Lord Elibank, will be ready to acknowledge that the feature of the family had, down to that time at least, lost nothing by transmission.
      People of sense, affected by such peculiarities, generally make light of them. Such were the Crawfords of Cowdenhills in Ayrshire, to whom was attached a large mouth, of not less pertinacity than that of the Murrays. There is still in existence a silver spoon, of uncommonly large proportions, which a representative of the family, who lived two hundred years ago, caused to be made for himself and his heirs ; and which, besides the date (1641), bears the following inscription :—
This spoone, ye see,
I leave in legacie,
To the maist-mouth'd Crawford after me .
Whoever sells or pawns it, cursed let him be.
It is hardly necessary to remark, that the existence   p.30 /   of such a spoon and such an inscription forms a somewhat better proof than is usually to be obtained of the alleged transmission of family features through a succession of generations.

      It was alleged of the Macleans by those who were not friendly to them, that they were addicted to a sort of ostentatious egotism, to which an untranslatable Gaelic epithet was affixed, not unaptly expressed by the word " Gasconade." When they began to decline before their more politic neighbours and rivals, the Campbells, they designated themselves
An cinneadh mor 's am por tubaisteach.
Which, literally translated, means
The great clan and luckless race ;
but this was observed by their enemies to be only an instance of their incurable self-esteem—" the ruling passion strong in death."

      The small estate of Cultoquey, in Perthshire, is considered a sort of miracle in the Highlands, having been preserved entire by one family for five hundred years, though surrounded on all hands by those of about half a dozen large proprietors. A Lowlander, or a modern, can scarcely conceive the difficulty which this honourable old family must have experienced in keeping its ground, in the midst of such powerful and avaricious neighbours, and through successive ages of barbarism and civil discord. That aggressions were not unattempted, or at least that the neighbours were not the most agreeable imaginable, is proved by an addition to the litany which Mr Maxton of Cultoquey made (about a century ago), and which is here preserved, as illustrating, in some measure, the characteristics of certain Scottish families.
From the greed of the Campbells,
From the ire of the Drummonds,
From the pride of the Grahams,
From the wind of the Murrays,
Good Lord deliver us !
      The author of this strange prayer was in the habit of repeating it, with the rest of the litany, every morning, on performing his toilette at a well near his house ; and it was perhaps the most heartfelt petition he preferred. The objects of the satire were, Campbell of Monzie, who lived a mile and a half from Cultoquey ; Campbell of Aberuchill, a judge of Session, and one of the greatest land-buyers of his time (eight miles) ; Drummond of Perth (four miles) ; Graham, Duke of Montrose, at Kincardine Castle (eight miles) ; Murray, Duke of Atholl, at Tullibardine Castle (six miles) ; and Moray of Abercairney, at Abercairney House (two miles). All these gentlemen took the joke in good part, except the Murrays, whose characteristic is the most opprobrious—wind, in Scottish phraseology, signifying a propensity to vain and foolish bravado. It is said that the Duke of Atholl, hearing of Cultoquey's Litany, invited the old humourist to dinner, and desired to hear from his own mouth the lines which had made so much noise over the country. Cultoquey repeated them, without the least boggling ; when his grace said, half in good, half in bad humour, " Take care, Cultie, for the future to omit my name in your morning devotions, else I shall certainly crop your ears for your boldness." " That's wind, my lord duke !" quoth Cultoquey, with the greatest coolness, taking off his glass. On another occasion, a gentleman of his grace's name having called upon Mr Maxton, and used some angry expostulations on the manner in which his clan was characterised, Cultoquey made no answer, other than bidding his servant open the door, and let out the wind of the Murrays ! *

Imitations of the litany were common in former times. Mr Thomas Forrester, an eccentric clergyman of Melrose, about two hundred years ago, made himself conspicuous, and was expelled from his parish, on account of his satirical additions to the service-book. He and his verses are thus noticed in " A Description of the Parish of Melrose, in Answer to Mr Maitland's Queries (1752) :"—" He was deposed by the Assembly, at Glasgow, anno 1638 ; and, as Honorius Regius acquaints us, 'Classe Mulrossiana accusante, probatum fuit,' that he had publicly declared, that any servile work might be done on the Lord's day, and, as an example to the people, he had brought home his corn out of the fields to his barn-yard on that day ; as also, that he had said, that the public and ordinary preaching of the word was no necessary part of divine worship ; that the reading of the liturgy was to be preferred to it ; that pastors and private Christians should use no other prayers but what were prescribed in the liturgy. They charged him likewise with Arminianism and Popery, and that he said publicly that the Reformers had done more harm to the Christian churches than the Popes at Rome had done for ten ages. I am surprised that no notice is taken of his litany, which made a great noise in those times. Bishop Guthrie, in his Memoirs, only mentions it :—
From Dickson, Henderson, and Cant,
Th' apostles of the Covenant,
Good Lord deliver us.
I have been at great pains to find out this litany in the libraires of the curious, but in vain. There was an old gentlewoman here, who remembered some parts of it, such as—
From the Jesuit knave in grain,
And from the she-priest crack'd in brain,
From her and a' such bad lasses,
And a' bald ignorant asses,
Such as John Ross, that donnart goose,
And Dan Duncanson, that duncy ghost,
Good Lord deliver us.
For the understanding of this part of the litany, we are to observe, that there was one Abernethy, who, from a Jesuit priest, turned a zealous Presbyterian, and was settled minister at Hownam, in Teviotdale ; he said the liturgy of Scotland was sent to Rome to some cardinals to be revised by them, and that Signior Con had showed it to himself there—he is the ' Jesuit.' And as to the she-priest, this was one Mrs Mitchelson, who was looked upon as a person inspired of God, and her words were recited as oracles, not a few taking them from her mouth in characters. Most of her speeches were about the Covenant.*
From lay lads in pulpit prattling,
Twice a-day rambling and rattling.
*                *                *
And concludes his litany—
           From all the knock-down race of Knoxes
Good Lord deliver us."         
  Burnet's Memoirs of the Dukes of Hamilton, p. 83.

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LOGAN was the name given in Scotland to the war-cry common throughout Europe in the middle ages. The French called it cri de guerre ; and an old Italian writer, Sylvester Petra Sancta, quaintly terms it clamor militaris. The object was to animate the troops by some common and endeared subject of reference at the moment of attack. Hence war-cries were generally one of three things—the name of the leader, the place of the rendezvous, or the figure on the standard. For an example of the first class, the cry of the family of Bourbon was simply the name Bourbon. Sometimes an encomium was added, as in the case of the cry of the Counts of Hainault—Hainault the Noble ; or that of the Duke of Milan—Milan the Valiant. Examples of the kind which consisted in a reference to the place of rendezvous were abundant in Scotland, in consequence of the localisation of clans in particular districts, and the practice which prevailed of collecting them at a particular place in times of danger, by means of a messenger or the fiery cross.

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      War-cries were also taken from the names of patron-saints. That of the King of England was St George.

" Advance our standards, set upon our foes ;
   Our ancient word of courage, fair St George,
   Inspire us with the spleen of fiery dragons !
   Upon them ! "
Richard III.*
  The favourite battle-cry of the Irish was " Aboo !" Henry VII. passed an act prohibiting its use, and enjoining St George instead, or else the name of the king for the time being.

The King of France cried Montjoye St Denis, the former word being in allusion, it is supposed, to certain little mounts on which crosses were erected on the way from Paris to St Denis, for the direction of travellers. Edward III. of England, at a skirmish near Paris in 1349, cried " Ha, St Edward ! (meaning the confessor) ; ha, St George ! "
      There were a few war-cries of kinds different from the above. An old French herald speaks of cries of resolution, of which that of the Crusaders, Dieu le veut (God wills it), was a notable example ; cries of invocation, an instance of which he cites in the Lords of Montmorency, Dieu aide au premier Chrêtien (God assist the first Christian), this being said to have been the first family converted to Christianity in France ; and cries of exhortation, as that of the Emperor, A dextre et a sinistre (to the right and left), a sufficiently emphatic direction to the soldiers of the chivalrous times.
      When modes of fighting changed, war-cries were laid aside, or transferred as mottoes to the crests of the families by which they had been used. The latter is the case with a large proportion of the slogans of our Scottish families.
      The following Scottish slogans are chiefly from a list kindly furnished to the editor, in 1825, by Sir Walter Scott :—

St Andrew !

A Douglas ! a Douglas !
*                     *                     *
While Douglas and his menzie all
Were coming up upon the wall.
Then in the tower they went in by [haste]:
The folk was that time halily [wholly]
Intill the hall at their dancing,
Singing, and others was playing :
*                     *                     *
But, ere they wist, richt in the hall
Douglas and his rout coming were all,
And cried on hicht, " Douglas ! Douglas ! "
And they that ma war than he was,
Heard " Douglas ! " cried hidiously ;
They were abasit for the cry.
*                     *                     *

Description of the taking of Roxburgh Castle by Sir James Douglas, in Barbour's Bruce.

A Home ! a Home !
      Nisbet, in his Heraldry, speaks of this as an example of the class of war-cries consisting of the name of the place of rendezvous, which, in this case, he says, was Home Castle. But, as the name of this noble family was Home, there seems no reason to suppose that it was not merely an expression of the name of the leader, as in the case of the preceding slogan.

Set on !
      A rebus upon the family name—Seton. Perhaps there might be some reference to this cry in the motto of the crest of the Earls of Winton—Hazard zit fordward !
      " About a score of weapons at once flashed in the sun, and there was an immediate clatter of swords and bucklers, while the followers on either side cried their master's name ; the one shouting ' Help ! a Leslie ! a Leslie !'  while the others answered with shouts of ' Seyton ! Seyton !'  with the additional punning slogan, 'Set on, Set on—bear the knaves to the ground.' "—Description of a street conflict in The Abbot.

Avant, Dernle !
      (Forward, Darnley !) the latter word being the name of a place in Renfrewshire, where the family first were settled, and which, being their second title, and therefore borne by the eldest son, acquired, through well-known circumstances, a haplessly conspicuous place in Scottish history. The war-cry of the family was in time adopted by them as a motto. In the early part of the last century, there was extant at Temple-Newsom, in Yorkshire, an old bed, said to have been that in which the Lord Darnley of Scottish history was born, and on the cornice of which was inscribed in gold, AVANT DARNLE, JAMAIS ARRIERE, AVANT DARNLE. Jamais arriere (never behind) was the motto of the Douglas family, to which the mother of Darnley belonged.

Bellendean !
      Bellendean, near the head of the Borthwick Water, in Roxburghshire, was the gathering-place of the clan Scott in times of war ; for which purpose it was very convenient, being in the centre of the possessions of the chiefs of this name.

Henwoodie !
      The Cranstouns were a powerful family in the southern part of Roxburghshire, and Henwoodie, on Oxnam Water in that district, was their place of rendezvous.

Bide me fair !

Gordon, Gordon, Bydand !
      Bydand (that is, abiding or waiting), the more important part of this slogan, has been adopted by the family as a motto to their crest.

Lonachin !
      Lonachin, a hilly ridge in Strathdon, Aberdeenshire, was the rendezvous of this clan.

      That is, Cairn of Remembrance—a mountain in Braemar. The Farquharsons are a powerful clan, occupying the south-western corner of Aberdeenshire.

      Place of rendezvous—a high, black, conspicuous rock in Badenoch, the country of the Macphersons.

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Craggan an fhithich.
      Place of rendezvous—signifying Rock of the Raven.

      Tullich-ard is a hill in Kintail, on the side of Loch Duich, a few miles from the ruined castle of Ellandonan, the original seat of the Clan Mackenzie. It is said to have commanded veneration in ancient times, and, like the temple of Janus, indicated peace or war. " When war commenced, a barrel of burning tar, on the highest peak, was the signal at which all the tenants around Seaforth assembled, in twenty-four hours, at the castle of St Donan. The mountain yet forms the crest of the Seaforth arms."—Laing's Caled. Itin., vol. i. p. 71.

Stand fast, Craigellachie.
      Craigellachie, a wooded hillock or rock in Strathspey, near the inn of Aviemore, on the side of the great road leading from Perth to Inverness, was the place of rendezvous of the clan Grant.

Loch Sloy.
      Place of rendezvous—a small lake between Loch Long and Loch Lomond.

Clare Innis ! (or Inch).
      Place of rendezvous—a small island in Loch Lomond.

A dh' ain deoin co 'heireadh e !
Translated literally,
In spite of who would say it.
That is, to the contrary, indicating a very strong and fearless resolution. " After forming for a little while, there was exhibited a changing, fluctuating, and confused appearance of waving tartans and floating plumes, and of banners displaying the proud gathering-word of Clanranald, Ganion Coheriga (gainsay who dares) ; Loch Sloy ; Forth, fortune, and fill the fetters, the motto of the Marquis of Tullibardine ; Bydand, that of Lord Lewis Gordon ; and the appropriate signal-words and emblems of many other chieftains and clans."—Description of the Highlanders' March to Preston, in Waverley.

O' ard choille !
      Place of rendezvous — signifying from the woody height.

The Grit Pule !
      That is, great pool. This was probably a well-known spot in the territories of the Laird of Aldie, and the rendezvous of his dependants. The phrase afterwards became the motto of the family.

Loreburn !
      " The motto [of the town arms] is Aloreburn or Loreburn—a word of which the precise import has never been ascertained. It is certain, however, that it was the ancient slogan or war-cry of the inhabitants ; and it is believed to be a corruption of the words Lower Burn, having reference to a small rivulet, the banks of which used to be the rendezvous of the burgesses, when they assembled in arms on the approach of a hostile force. Accordingly, a street in the immediate neighbourhood of the original course of the stream in question, bears the name of Loreburn Street."—New Stat. Account of Scotland, article Dumfries. It is not easy to believe that the rivulet was called Lower Burn, as distinguishing it from some other rivulet, nether being the word usually adopted in Scotland to express such an idea ; but the stream might be called the Loreburn, with reference to some other peculiarity.

Terri buss and Terri odin !

Jethart's here !
" Then rose the slogan with a shout,                    
   To it Tynedale !—Jethart's here."
Old Ballad.

Boghail !

Knock Ferghaun !

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THE Fairies, or, as they were popularly called, the gude neebors, were famous for their elopements with the wives of mortals. The miller of Alva is not the only " injured husband" whose case we have to record. A neighbour of that person—the smith of Tullibody—was equally unfortunate ; and had not, for any thing we ever heard, the ultimate happiness of getting back his lost spouse. The case of the smith was attended, as the newspapers would say, with circumstances of peculiar aggravation. His spouse was taken away almost before his very eyes ; and not only was his honour thus wounded in the tenderest point, but his feelings were also stung by a rhyme of exultation sung by the fairies, in which they reflected, in a most scandalous and ungenerous manner, upon his personal habits. The tale goes, that, while he was busy at work at one end of the house, he heard the seducers, as they flew up the chimney at the other, singing, with malicious glee—
" Deedle linkum dodie,
   We've gotten drucken Davie's wife,
   The smith of Tullibody ! "
      The fairies do not appear to have ever been successful in introducing the human race, by the above means, into their own country. At least, it is well known that they were in the habit of frequently stealing away children from the cradles of mortal mothers, for the purpose of adopting them as their own offspring, nurturing them in Fairy-land, and making them part of their own community. The heavy coil of humanity does not appear to have been thus engrafted upon the light-bodied race, who could exhibit feats of rope-dancing upon the beams of the new moon, and feast unseen, in thousands, under the blossom of the wild violet.* These adopted children,

  " It is still currently believed, that he who has the courage to rush upon a fairy festival, and snatch from them their drinking-cup, or horn, shall find it prove to him a cornucopia of good fortune, if he can bear it in safety across a running stream. A goblet is still carefully preserved in Edenhall, Cumberland, which is supposed to have been seized at a banquet of the elves, by one of   p.33 /   the ancient family of Musgrave, or, as others say, by one of their domestics, in the manner above described. The fairy train vanished, crying aloud :—
' If this glass do break or fall,
  Farewell the luck of Edenhall !'
    The goblet took a name from the prophecy, under which it is mentioned in the burlesque ballad commonly attributed to the Duke of Wharton, but in reality composed by Lloyd, one of his jovial companions. The duke, after taking a draught, had nearly terminated the 'luck of Edenhall,' had not the butler caught the cup in a napkin, as it dropped from his grace's hands. I understand it is not now subject to such risks ; but the lees of wine are still apparent at the bottom."—Minst. Scot. Bord. ii. 130.

perhaps, remained amongst them only in the quality of friends, platonic lovers, or servants ; and were permitted, after a few years of probation, to return to earth, in a fitter condition than formerly to enjoy its blessings. It ought not to be forgotten, that, in cases of stealing children, one of their own unearthly brats was usually left in the cradle.
     It was, till lately, believed by the ploughmen of Clydesdale, that if they repeated the rhyme,

Fairy, fairy, bake me a bannock, and roast me a collop,
And I'll gie ye a spurtle aff my gad end !
three several times, on turning their cattle at the terminations of ridges, they would find the said fare prepared for them on reaching the end of the fourth furrow.
      The fairies are said to have been exceedingly sensitive upon the subject of their popular appellations. They considered the term fairy disreputable ; and are thought to have pointed out their approbation and disapprobation of the other phrases applied to them in the following verses :—
Gin ye ca' me imp or elf,
I rede ye look weel to yourself ;
Gin ye ca' me fairy,
I'll work ye muckle tarrie ;*
Gin gude neibor ye ca' me,
Then gude neibor I will be ;
But gin ye ca' me seelie wicht,
I'll be your freend baith day and nicht.

      Husbandmen used to avoid, with superstitious reverence, to till or destroy the little circlets of bright green grass which are believed to be the favourite ballrooms of the fairies ; for, according to the appropriate rhyme,
He wha tills the fairies' green,
    Nae luck again shall hae ;
And he wha spills the fairies' ring,
    Betide him want and wae ;
For weirdless days and weary nights
    Are his till his deean day !
Whereas, by the same authority,
He wha gaes by the fairy ring,
    Nae dule nor pine shall see ;
And he wha cleans the fairy ring,
    An easy death shall dee.
There is an old adage—
Whare the scythe cuts and the sock rives,
Hae done wi' fairies and bee-bykes !
Meaning, that the ploughing, or even the mowing, of the ground, tends to extirpate alike the earth-bee and the fairy. In various places, the fairies are described as having been seen on some particular occasion to gather together and take a formal farewell of the district, when it had become, from agricultural changes, unfitted for their residence.

      The Brownie was a household spirit of an useful and familiar character. In former times, almost every farm-house in the south of Scotland was supposed to be haunted by one. He was understood to be a spirit of a somewhat grotesque figure, dwarfish in stature, but endowed with great personal strength. It was his humour to be unseen and idle during the whole day, or while the people of the house were astir, and only to exert himself while all the rest were asleep. It was customary for the mistress of the house to leave out work for him—such as the supper-dishes to be washed, or the churn to be prepared—and he never failed to have the whole done in the morning. This drudgery he performed gratuitously. He was a most disinterested spirit. To have offered him wages, or even to present him with an occasional boon, would have ensured his anger, and perhaps caused him to abandon the establishment altogether. Numerous stories are told of his resentment in cases of his being thus affronted. For instance, on the goodman of a farm-house in the parish of Glendevon leaving out some clothes one night for the brownie, he was heard during the night to depart, saying, in a highly offended tone,
" Gie brownie coat, gie brownie sark,
  Ye'se get nae mair o' brownie's wark !"
The brownie of the farm-house of Bodsbeck, in Ettrick, left his employment upwards of a century ago, on a similar account. He had exerted himself so much in the farm-labour, both in and out of doors, that Bodsbeck became the most prosperous farm in the district. He always took his meat as it pleased himself, usually in very moderate quantities, and of the most humble description. During a time of very hard labour, perhaps harvest, when a little better fare than ordinary might have been judged acceptable, the goodman took the liberty of leaving out a mess of bread and milk, thinking it but fair that at a time when some improvement, both in quantity and quality, was made upon the fare of the human servants, the useful brownie should obtain a share in the blessing. He had calculated, however, without his guest, for the result was, that the brownie left the house for ever, exclaiming,
" Ca', brownie, ca',
  A' the luck o' Bodsbeck away to Leithenha'."
The luck of Bodsbeck accordingly departed with its brownie, and settled in the neighbouring farm-house, called Leithenhall, whither the brownie transferred his friendship and services.
      The traditions of Forfarshire put the rhyme which follows into the mouth of a brownie, which, having been expelled by exorcisms from its favourite haunt, the old castle of Claypots, near Dundee, spouted before departing a somewhat satirical enumeration of the neighbouring localities :—
" The Ferry and the Ferry-well,
  The Camp and the Camp-hill,
  Balmossie and Balmossie Mill,
  Burnside and Burn-hill,
  The thin sowens o' Drumgeith,
  The fair May o' Monifeith ;
  There's Gutterston and Wallackston,
  Clay-pats I'll gie my malison ;
  Come I late or come I air,
  Balemie's boord's aye bare."
      One of the principal characteristics of the brownie was his anxiety about the moral conduct of the household to which he was attached. He was a spirit very much inclined to prick up his ears at the first appearance of any impropriety in the manners of his fellow-servants. The least delinquency committed either in barn, or cow-house, or larder, he was sure to report to his master, whose interests he seemed to consider paramount to every other thing in this world, and from whom no bribe could induce him to conceal the offences which fell under his notice. The men, therefore, and not less the maids, of the establish-   p.34 /   ment, usually regarded him with a mixture of fear, hatred, and respect ; and though he might not often find occasion to do his duty as a spy, yet the firm belief that he would be relentless in doing so, provided that he did find occasion, had a salutary effect. A ludicrous instance of his zeal as guardian of the household morals, is told in Peeblesshire. Two dairy-maids, who were pinched in their food by a too frugal mistress, found themselves one day compelled by hunger to have recourse to the highly improper expedient of stealing a bowl of milk and a bannock, which they proceeded to devour, as they thought, in secret. They sat upon a form, with a space between, whereon they placed the bowl and the bread, and they took bite and sip alternately, each putting down the bowl upon the seat for a moment's space after taking a draught, and the other then taking it up in her hands, and treating herself in the same way. They had no sooner commenced their mess, than the brownie came between the two, invisible, and, whenever the bowl was set down upon the seat, took also a draught ; by which means, as he devoured fully as much as both put together, the milk was speedily exhausted. The surprise of the famished girls at finding the bowl so soon empty was extreme, and they began to question each other very sharply upon the subject, with mutual suspicion of unfair play, when the brownie undeceived them by exclaiming, with malicious glee,
" Ha ! ha ! ha !
  Brownie has't a' !"

      The articles enumerated in the following rhyme, were supposed to have influence over witches :—
Black luggie, Lammer bead,
Rowan-tree, and red thread,
Put the witches to their speed !
      According to a curious pamphlet, first printed in 1591, entitled, " Newes from Scotland, declaring the Damnable Life of Dr Fian," the following was the dancing song of a large body of witches, who landed one night in a fleet of sieves and cockle-shells, at a place near the church of North Berwick, where they held some unspeakable saturnalia :—
Cummer, go ye before ; cummer, go ye !
Gif ye will not go before, cummer, let me !
      Witches were supposed to have it in their power to supply themselves with milk, by pulling at a hair-rope, as dairy-maids tug the teats of cattle, and using the following conjuration :—
Mear's milk, and deer's milk,
And every beast that bears milk,
Atween St Johnston and Dundee,
Come a' to me, come a' to me.
      The parish of Innerkip, in Renfrewshire, was famous for its witches. In 1662, the privy-council issued a commission to try a number of them ; and several poor wretches were accordingly done to death " conform to law." A rhyme which still lingers in the district, runs thus :—
In Innerkip the witches ride thick,
    And in Dunrod they dwell ;
The grittest loon amang them a'
    Is auld Dunrod himsel !
Dunrod is an estate in the parish of Innerkip, and anciently belonged to a branch of the Lindsays. As Alexander Lindsay, the last of these lairds, sold the estate in 1619, the rhyme may be considered as old as the beginning of the seventeenth century.

      Mermaids, in Scottish superstition, were both beneficient and dangerous personages. One of celebrity in Galloway would sometimes communicate useful knowledge to the people living along the rocky coast which she delighted to frequent. " A charming young girl, whom consumption had brought to the brink of the grave, was lamented by her lover. In a vein of renovating sweetness, the good Mermaid sung to him :—
" Wad ye let the bonnie May die i' your hand,
   And the mugwort flowering i' the land ?"
He cropped and pressed the flower-tops, and administered the juice to his fair mistress, who arose and blessed the bestower for the return of health."*

  Cromek's Remains of Nithsdale and Galloway song.

      There is a story in Renfrewshire which represents the maid of the sea in a similar kindly disposition towards afflicted humanity. The funeral of a young woman who had died of consumption was passing along the high-road, on the margin of the Firth of Clyde, above Port-Glasgow, when a mermaid raised her head from the water, and in slow admonitory tones uttered these words :—

" If they wad drink nettles in March,
       And eat muggons in May,
   Sae mony braw maidens
       Wadna gang to the clay."
As may be readily surmised, muggons or mugwort (also called southernwood), and a decoction of nettles, form a favourite prescription for consumption amongst the common people.
      Of the evil dispositions of the Mermaid, more numerous instances could be adduced. A deep and beautiful pool in Dalbeattie Burn, near its junction with the Solway, was a favourite haunt of the Mermaid of Galloway. In the first evenings of the moon, she would sit on a block of granite beside that pool, combing her long yellow locks, and delivering her healing oracles. At length, a devout farmer's wife, scandalised at her visits, tumbled this stone chair into the pool, with a view to preventing her return. Next morning, the offender's only child was found dead in its cradle, and at eve a voice was heard from the pool, exclaiming—
" Ye may look to your toom cradle,
       And I'll look to my stane ;
   And meikle we'll think, and meikle we'll look,
       But words we'll ne'er hae nane."
      The young Laird of Lorntie, in Forfarshire, was one evening returning from a hunting excursion, attended by a single servant and two greyhounds, when, in passing a solitary lake, which lies about three miles south from Lorntie, and was in those times closely surrounded with natural wood, his ears were suddenly assailed by the shrieks of a female apparently drowning. Being of a fearless character, he instantly spurred his horse forward to the side of the lake, and there saw a beautiful female struggling with the water, and, as it seemed to him, just in the act of sinking. " Help, help, Lorntie !" she exclaimed ; " help, Lorntie—help, Lor" ——, and the waters seemed to choke the last sounds of her voice as they gurgled in her throat. The laird, unable to resist the impulses of humanity, rushed into the lake, and was just about to grasp the long yellow locks of the lady, which lay like hanks of gold upon the water, when he was suddenly seized behind, and forced out of the lake by his servant, who, farther-sighted than his master, perceived the whole affair to be the feint of a water-spirit. " Bide, Lorntie—bide a blink !" cried the faithful creature, as the laird was about to dash him to the earth ; " that wauling madam was nae other, God sauf us ! than the Mermaid." Lorntie instantly acknowledged the truth of this asseveration, which, as he was preparing to mount his horse, was confirmed by the mermaid raising herself   p.35 /   half out of the water, and exclaiming, in a voice of fiendish disappointment and ferocity—
" Lorntie, Lorntie,
       Were it na your man,
   I had gart your heart's bluid
       Skirl in my pan."

      In the days of yore, the proprietors of Colzean, in Ayrshire (ancestors of the Marquis of Ailsa), were known in that country by the title of Lairds o' Co', a name bestowed on Colzean from some co's (or coves) in the rock underneath the castle.
      One morning, a very little boy, carrying a small wooden can, addressed the laird near the castle gate, begging for a little ale for his mother, who was sick ; the laird directed him to go to the butler and get his can filled ; so away he went as ordered. The butler had a barrel of ale on tap, but about half full, out of which he proceeded to fill the boy's can ; but to his extreme surprise he emptied the cask, and still the little can was not nearly full. The butler was unwilling to broach another barrel, but the little fellow insisted on the fulfilment of the laird's order, and a reference was made to him by the butler, who stated the miraculously large capacity of the tiny can, and received instant orders to fill it if all the ale in the cellar would suffice. Obedient to this command, he broached another cask, but had scarcely drawn a drop when the can was full, and the dwarf departed with expressions of gratitude.
      Some years afterwards, the laird, being at the wars in Flanders, was taken prisoner, and for some reason or other (probably as a spy) condemned to die a felon's death. The night prior to the day appointed for his execution, being confined in a dungeon strongly barricaded, the doors suddenly flew open, and the dwarf re-appeared, saying,
" Laird o' Co',
   Rise an' go"—
a summons too welcome to require repetition.
      On emerging from prison, the boy caused him to mount on his shoulders, and in a short time set him down at his own gate, on the very spot where they had first met, saying,
" Ae gude turn deserves anither—
   Tak ye that for being sae kin' to my auld mither,"
and vanished.*

  The above story appeared some years ago in the Kaleidoscope, a Liverpool periodical publication.

      The old family of the Grahams of Morphie was in former times very powerful, but at length became impoverished, and finally extinct. Among the old women of the Mearns, their decay is attributed to a supernatural cause. When one of the lairds, say they, built the old castle, he secured the assistance of the water-kelpy or river-horse, by the accredited means of throwing a pair of branks over his head. He then compelled the robust spirit to carry prodigious loads of stones for the building, and did not relieve him till the whole was finished. The poor kelpy was glad of his deliverance, but at the same time felt himself so galled with the hard labour, that on being permitted to escape from the branks, and just before he disappeared in the water, he turned about, and expressed, in the following words, at once his own grievances and the destiny of his taskmaster's family :—
" Sair back and sair banes,
   Drivin the Laird o' Morphie's stanes !
   The Laird o' Morphie 'll never thrive
   As lang's the kelpy is alive !"

      There is a charm used by the dairymaids of Clydesdale, to induce refractory or bewitched cows to give their milk:—
Bonnie ladye, let doon your milk,
And I'll gie you a goon o' silk ;
A goon o' silk and a ball o' twine—
Bonnie ladye, your milk's no mine.
      In Scotland, it is accounted fortunate to be seated when we first see the swallow in spring, to be walking when we first hear the cuckoo, and to see, for the first time in the year, a foal going before the eyes of its dam :—
Gang an' hear the gouk yell,
    Sit an' see the swallow flee,
See the foal before its mither's e'e,
    'Twill be a thriving year wi' thee.*
  In the Highlands, it is reckoned lucky to see a foal, calf, or lamb, for the first time, with the head towards the observer.

      Throughout all Scotland it is a belief that the number of magpies seen at a time denotes various degrees of good and evil fortune :—
Ane's joy, twa's grief,
Three's a marriage, four's death.
      Colours are connected by Scottish superstition with the strangely mingled texture of human life :
Is luve true.
Is luve deen.
Is luve deen,
Yellow's forsaken.
Blue is beauty, red's a taiken [token],
Green's grief, and yellow's forsaken.
Yellow was a despised colour in the middle ages, and formed the dress of slaves and bankrupts—hence the yellow breeches still worn by the boys of Christ's Hospital. It is rather strange that green, the most natural and agreeable of all colours, should have been connected by superstition with calamity and sorrow. It was thought very ominous to be married in a dress of this hue :
They that marry in green,
Their sorrow is soon seen.
To this day, in the north of Scotland, no young woman would wear such attire on her wedding day. A correspondent states as follows :—" An old lady of my acquaintance used seriously to warn young females against being married in green, for she attributed her own misfortunes solely to having approached the altar of Hymen in a gown of that colour, which she had worn against the advice of her seniors, all of whom recommended blue as the lucky colour." Probably, the saying respecting a lady married before her elder sisters, " that she has given them green stockings," is connected with this notion.
Grey-eyed, greedy ;
Brown-eyed, needy ;
Black-eyed, never blin',
Till it shame a' its kin.
      The young women in Galloway, when they first see the new moon,† sally out of doors, and pull a handful of grass, saying—
New mune, true mune, tell me if you can,
Gif I hae here a hair like the hair o' my gudeman.
  It is well known to be a prevalent custom or freit, on first seeing the new moon, to turn money in the pocket.

The grass is then brought into the house, where it is carefully searched, and if a hair be found amongst it, which is generally the case, the colour of that hair determines that of the future husband's.
      " The herb vervain, revered by the druids, was   p.36 /   reckoned a powerful charm by the common people ; and the author recollects a popular rhyme, supposed to be addressed to a young woman by the devil, who attempted to seduce her in the shape of a handsome young man :—
Gin you wish to be leman mine,
Leave off the St John's wort and the vervine.
By his repugnance to these sacred plants, his mistress discovered the cloven foot."*—Minst. Scot. Border.
  " The very same idea must have prevailed in Sweden, for one of the names given to the thypericum perforatum is Fuga Dæmonum."—JAMIESON'S Scottish Dict., Supplement, vol. i. p. 636.
    " When the country doctors among the common people, or old women, pull herbs for medicinal purposes, they always add some superstitious invocation, and some plants are taken up ' in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost ;'  but when vervain is pulled, this peculiar incantation is used :—
Vervain, thou growest upon holy ground,
In Mount Calvary thou wert found ;
Thou curest all sores and all diseases,
And in the name of holy Jesus
I pull you out of the ground."
TIGHE'S Survey, quoted in Mrs Hall's "Ireland."      

    The young women of the Lowlands, on first observing the new moon, exclaim as follows :—
New mune, true mune,
    Tell unto me,
If [naming her favourite lover] my true love,
    He will marry me.
If he marry me in haste,
Let me see his bonnie face,
If he marry me betide,
Let me see his bonnie side ;
Gin he marry na me ava',
Turn his back and gae awa'.
They expect in their dreams that night to see their lover, under one or another of the conditions enumerated. It is curious to find that the same custom exists in a distant English county.†
  In Berkshire, at the first appearance of a new moon, maidens go into the fields, and while they look at it, say,
New moon, new moon, I hail thee !
By all the virtue in thy body,
Grant this night that I may see
He who my true lover is to be.
They then return home, firmly believing that, before morning, their future husband will appear to them in their dreams.— H
ONE'S Year-Book, p. 254.

      Among the many superstitious rites of Halloween, knotting the garter holds a distinguished place. It is performed, like the preceding freits, by young females, as a divination to discover their future partners in life. The left leg garter is taken, and three knots are tied on it. During the time of knotting, the person must not speak to any one, otherwise the charm will prove abortive. She repeats the following rhyme upon tying each knot :—
This knot, this knot, this knot I knit,
To see the thing I ne'er saw yet—
To see my love in his array,
And what he walks in every day ;
And what his occupation be,
This night I in my sleep may see.
And if my love be clad in green,
His love for me is well seen ;
And if my love is clad in grey,
His love for me is far away ;
But if my love be clad in blue,
His love for me is very true.‡
  Var.—And if his livery I am to wear,
                      And if his bairns I am to bear,
                      Blithe and merry may he be,
                      And may his face be turned to me.

After all the knots are tied, she puts the garter below her pillow, and sleeps on it; and it is believed that her future husband will appear to her in a dream in his usual dress and appearance. The colour of his clothes will denote whether the marriage is to prove fortunate or not.

      The rhymes used in healing by Agnes Simpson, a " wise woman" who dwelt at Keith in Lothian, and was tried in 1591 for witchcraft, have been preserved in the records of the Court of Justiciary. At the examination of this woman, in presence of the king, the following particulars, amongst others, were brought out:—
      " Being sent for to Edmonstone to decide by her supernatural skill whether the lady of the house should recover from an illness or not—for women of her order appear in that age to have been as regularly called to the bedsides of the sick as physicians—she told the attendants that she could give them the required information that evening after supper, appointing them to meet her in the garden. She then passed to the garden, and, as was her custom in such cases, uttered a metrical prayer, which, according to her own confession, she had learned from her father, and which enabled her to determine whether the patient would be cured or not, as, if she said it with one breath, the result was to be life, but if otherwise, death. This prayer was as follows :—
' I trow [trust] in Almighty God, that wrought
Baith heaven and earth, and all of nought ;
In his dear son, Christ Jesu,
In that comely lord I trow,
Was gotten by the Haly Ghaist,
Born of the Virgin Mary,
Stapped to heaven, that all weil than,
And sits at his Father' richt hand.
He bade us come and heir to dome
Baith quick and deid to him convene.
I trow also in the Haly Ghaist ;
In haly kirk my hope is maist,
That haly ship where hallowers wins
To ask forgiveness of their sins,
And syne to rise in flesh and bane,
The lip that never mair has gane.
Thou says, Lord, loved may he be,
That formed and made mankind of me.
Thou coft [bought] me on the haly cross,
Thou lent me body, saul, and voce,
And ordanet me to heavenly bliss ;
Wherefore I thank ye, Lord, of this.
That all your hallowers loved be,
To pray to them that pray to me.
And keep me fra that fellon fae,
And from the sin that saul would slay.
Thou, Lord, for thy bitter passion in,
To keep me from sin and warldly shame,
And endless damnation.  Grant me the joy never will be gane,
            Sweet Christ Jesus.  Amen.'

     Having stopped in the course of this long prayer, she despaired of the lady's life. However, she called upon the devil, by the name of Elpha, to come to speak to her. He presently appeared climbing over the garden-wall, in the shape of a large dog ; and he came so near her, that, getting afraid, she charged him, by the law that he lived on, to keep at a certain distance. She then asked if the lady would live, to which he only answered, that ' her days were gane.' He, in his turn, asked where the young gentlewomen, daughters to Lady Edmonstone, were at present. She answered, that she expected soon to see them in the garden. ' Ane of them,' said he, ' will be in peril ; I wish to have her.' On her answering that it should not be so with her consent, he ' departit frae her,' says the indictment, ' yowling ;' and from that time till after supper he remained in the draw-well. After supper, the young ladies walked out into the garden to learn the result of Mrs Simpson's inquiries, on which the devil came out of the well, and seizing the skirts of one of them (probably a married one, as she is called Lady Torsonce), drew her violently towards   p.37 /   the pit from which he had emerged ; and it is added, that, if Simpson and the other ladies had not exerted themselves to hold her back, he would have succeeded in his wishes. Finding himself disappointed of his prey, he ' passit away thairefter with ane yowle.' The object of his ravenous passions fainted, and was carried home ; she lay in a frenzy for three or four days, and continued sick and cripple for as many months. And it was remarked that, whenever the wise wife of Keith was with her, she was well ; but, on her going away, all the dangerous symptoms returned. In the mean time, it is to be supposed the old lady died."—Life of James VI. 2 vols. 1830.
      Mrs Simpson's prayer, while immediately engaged in healing the sick, was as follows :—
" All kynds of ill that ever may be,
   In Christ's name I conjure ye.
   I conjure ye, baith mair and less,
   By all the vertues of the messe,
   And rycht sa with the naillis sa,
   That nailed Jesus and not ma,
   And rycht sa by the samen bluid,
   That reekit ower the ruthful rude,
   Furth of the flesh and of the bane,
   And in the eard and in the stane,
         I conjure ye in God's name."

      Superstitious observances still flourish unaffected in Shetland. To quote from the minister of the parish of Sandsting and Aithsting, in the New Statistical Account of Scotland:—" These are practised chiefly in attempting to cure diseases in man and beast, or in taking away the ' profits' of their neighbours' cows ; that is, in appropriating, by certain charms, to their own dairy, the milk and butter which should have replenished that of their neighbour. I shall subjoin a few specimens.
      Wresting Thread.—When a person has received a sprain, it is customary to apply to an individual practised in casting the ' wresting thread.' This is a thread spun from black wool, on which are cast nine knots, and tied round a sprained leg or arm. During the time the operator is putting the thread round the affected limb, he says, but in such a tone of voice as not to be heard by the bystanders, nor even by the person operated upon—
The Lord rade,
And the foal slade ;
He lighted,
And he righted.
Set joint to joint,
Bone to bone,
And sinew to sinew.
Heal in the Holy Ghost's name !
      Ringworm. — The person afflicted with ringworm takes a little ashes between the forefinger and thumb, three successive mornings, and before having taken any food, and holding the ashes to the part affected, says—
Ringworm ! ringworm red !
Never mayest thou either spread or speed ;
But aye grow less and less,
And die away among the ase [ashes].
At the same time, throwing the little ashes held between the forefinger and thumb into the fire.
      Burn.—To cure a burn, the following words are used :—
Here come I to cure a burnt sore ;
If the dead knew what the living endure,
The burnt sore would burn no more.
The operator, after having repeated the above, blows his breath three times upon the burnt place. The above is recorded to have been communicated to a daughter who had been burned, by the spirit of her deceased mother."
      In Galloway, the district of Scotland most remote from Shetland, and occupied by people mainly of different origin, the rhyme for the ringworm is nearly the same as the above :—
Ringwood, ringwood roun',
I wish ye may neither spread nor spring,
But aye grow less and less,
Till ye fa' i' 'e ase and burn !

squiggly rulesquiggly rule


HIS class of rhymes embodies the wisdom of our ancestors, such as it was, upon a subject which is necessarily interesting above most others to a rural people, and invariably attracts a large share of their attention. The Scottish rural class, in former times, had no barometer, no means of scientific calculation of any kind ; even the hours of the day and night were chiefly inferred from natural circumstances. The knowledge which long-continued observation gives respecting meteorological changes was embodied in verses of the usual simple kind, which were handed down from sire to son with the greatest fidelity, and are still occassionally quoted by old people. They may be arranged in two sections—first, those which relate to the character of a year or season ; and, second, those which refer to an ordinary change.

Mony hawes,
Mony snaws.
It is thus inferred that, when there is a great exhibition of blossom on the hedgerows, the ensuing winter will be remarkable for snow-storms.*  It is said that in this there is a providential object, namely, to supply food for the birds in the coming season.

  In Germany, there is a rhyme which may be thus translated :—
When the hawthorn has too early hawes,
We shall still have many snaws.
It is to be observed, that on the continent the hawthorn sometimes blooms so early as the end of February or beginning of March, and that, accordingly, a tract of wintry weather often follows.

      A variable winter is not liked by the pastoral farmers of the south of Scotland, who thus describe its effects on their stocks :—
Mony a frost and mony a thowe,
Soon maks mony a rotten yowe.†

      One of the most familiar rhymes respecting the weather is popularly understood to be the composition of no less distinguished a man than George Buchanan. This illustrious scholar and patriot is vulgarly believed in Scotland to have been the king's fool or jester—a mere natural, but possessed of a gift of wit which enabled him to give very pertinent answers to impertinent questions. He was once asked—so runs the story—what could buy a plough of gold ; when he immediately answered—
" A frosty winter and a dusty March, a rain about April,
Another about the Lammas time, when the corn begins to fill,
Is weel worth a pleuch o' gowd, and a' her pins there-till."
Which accordingly is believed to contain the exact description of a season calculated to produce a good   p.38 /   harvest—a thing not over-estimated at the value of a plough composed of the most precious metal.

      Of all the months, February, though the shortest, appears to be considered by rural people as the most important. We have as many rhymes about this docked month as about all the rest put together ; and all express either an open detestation of it, or a profound sense of its influence in deciding the fortune of stock, and the nature of the weather which is to follow. In Tweeddale they say—
Februar, an ye be fair,
The hoggs*  'll mend, and naething pair ;†
Februar, an ye be foul,
The hoggs 'll die in ilka pool.
  Sheep in their second year.
  Impair, or lesson.

Yet, throughout the country generally, good weather in February is regarded as an unfavourable symptom of what is to come :—
A' the months o' the year,
Curse a fair Februar.
It is remarkable that in England there is the same notion, as witness a proverb from Ray's Collection :—
The Welshman would rather see his dam on her bier,
Than see a fair Februeer.
And also in Germany, where they say—
Matheis bricht's Eis,
Find't er keins, so macht er eins.
That is, Matthew [St Matthew's day is the 24th February] breaks the ice : if he find none he will make it.
      The likelihood of bad weather in this month is acknowledged as universally as the ominousness of that of a contrary description. Thus they say in lowland Scotland :—
February fills the dyke
Either with the black or white.
That is, it fills the ditches either with rain or snow. In Ray's English Proverbs, we have the same idea somewhat extended :—
February fill the dyke,
Be it black or be it white ;
But if it be white,
It's the better to like.
There is a similar French proverb. It seems to be generally felt in temperate regions, that the snowy covering of the earth during winter is useful in promoting vegetable growth in spring and summer.
      Then, again, we have the Aberdonians informing us that
The fair-day o' Auld Deer
Is the warst day in a' the year.
Namely, the third Thursday of February. But the unkindest cut of all is yet to come :—
Leap year
Was never a gude sheep year,
say the pastoral folk of Ettrick and Yarrow, as if the extension of this unhappy month by so little as a single day were sufficient to mark the year with ruin to the stock. The force of obloquy " can no farther go."

     The following rhyme respecting Candlemas day is universal in Scotland :—
If Candlemas day be dry and fair,
The half o' winter's to come and mair ;
If Candlemas day be wet and foul,
The half o' winter's gane at Yule.
Candlemas day (February 2), the festival of the Purification of the Virgin, appears to have been one of the most venerated and carefully observed of all the Romish festivals. How this paradoxical prognostication should have arisen with regard to it, is not now to be ascertained ; but we are assured by Sir Thomas Browne, in his Vulgar Errors, that it is " a general tradition in most parts of Europe, being expressed in the following distich :—
Si sol splendescat Maria purificante,
Major erit glacies post festum quam fuit ante."
      In Germany, there are two vernacular proverbs to express the same idea :—
      1. The shepherd would rather see the wolf enter his stable on Candlemas day than the sun.   2. The badger peeps out of his hole on Christmas day, and when he finds snow, walks abroad ; but if he sees the sun shining, he draws back into his hole.
      Mr Hone, in his Every-day Book, quotes the following to the same purpose from the Country Almanac for 1676, the passage occurring under February :—
" Foul weather is no news ;
       Hail, rain, and snow,
   Are now expected, and
       Esteem'd no woe ;
   Nay, 'tis an omen bad,
       The yeomen say,
   If Phœbus shows his face
       The second day."
Dr Forster, in his Encyclopedia of Natural Phenomena, remarks that, about Candlemas day, the weather has generally become a little milder. The exception to this rule, or a frosty Candlemas day, is found to be so generally indicative of cold for the next six weeks or two months, that it has given rise to several proverbs, especially—
If Candlemas day be fair and bright,
Winter will have another flight.
Dr Forster states that he had consulted several journals of weather, which satisfied him that this adage was generally correct. It is worthy of notice, that a similar notion prevails as extensively in Europe respecting the day of the conversion of St Paul (January 25) :—
" Let no such vulgar tales debauch thy mind,
   Nor Paul nor Swithin rule the clouds and wind."      
      Before passing from Candlemas day, we may transcribe a verse popular in the south of Scotland, as a direction by which to ascertain from this day on what day the moveable feast of St Faustinus (Shrove Tuesday) will fall :—
First comes Candlemas, and then the new moon,
The next Tuesday after is Fasten's e'en.
Easter is ascertained by the simple principle of its always being the first Tuesday after the full moon, which happens upon, or next after, the 21st day of March ; and Shrove Tuesday is always the seventh Tuesday before Easter ; but we cannot vouch that the rule of our rhyme is as well ascertained.

      The three last days of March are the subject of a strange and obscure popular story, which leads the mind back into the very earliest stage of society. These three days are called the Borrowing Days, being alleged to have been a loan from April to March. The idea is also prevalent in England, where there is a proverb thus given by Ray in his collection :—
Borrows three days of March, and they are ill.
In an ancient Romish calendar, to which frequent reference is made in Brand's Popular Antiquities, there   p.39 /   is an obscure allusion to these Borrowing Days, under 31st March : it is to the following effect—" A rustic fable concerning the nature of the month : the rustic names of six days which shall follow in April, or may be the last of March." The most common rhyme on this subject, in Scotland, goes thus :—
March borrowed from April
Three days, and they were ill :
The first o' them was wind and weet,
The second o' them was snaw and sleet,
The third o' them was sic a freeze,
It froze the birds' nebs to the trees.
A Stirlingshire version is more dramatic, and gives the name of one of the months in nearly the original French:
March said to Averil,
" I see three hoggs on yonder hill ;
And if you'll lend me dayis three,
I'll find a way to gar them die !"
The first o' them was wind and weet,
The second o' them was snaw and sleet,
The third o' them was sic a freeze,
It froze the birds' feet to the trees.
When the three days were past and gane,
The silly puir hoggs cam hirpling hame.
What could have inspired March with so deadly a design against the three sheep, is one of those profound questions which only can be solved by the cottage fireside, " between gloaming and supper-time." Certes, however, the three last days of March are still occasionally observed to be of the kind described in these rhymes—and that in defiance of the statute 24 Geo. II. cap. 23. It is purely vain to point out to one of the sages who keep an eye upon the Borrowing Days, that the three last days of March are not now the same as they were before the year 1752, but in reality correspond with that part of the year which was once the 18th, 19th, and 20th of the month. " Gae wa'," said one old man, to whom we had explained this circumstance, " d'ye think the Almighty cares for acks o' parliament ?"

It is generally conceded that
April showers
Mak May flowers.
But the beau-ideal of a good May is different among the farmers from what it is among the poets. Buchanan exclaims in rapture,
" All hail to thee, thou first of May !"
Tout au contraire, the agriculturist says,
Mist in May and heat in June,
Maks the harvest richt sune ;
while the Galloway version speaks still more decidedly—
A wet May and a winnie,
Brings a fou stackyard and a finnie ;*
  The Germans say :—
Ein May kühl und nass,
Füllt die Scheune und das Fass.

May cool and wet,
Fills the stackyard and the casks [wine casks ].

This rhyme, however, applies with propriety only to certain hilly districts of Germany.

implying that rain in May and dry winds afterwards produce a plentiful crop, with that mark of excellence by which grain is generally judged of by connoisseurs—a good feeling in the hand.†

  Mactaggart's Gallovidian Encyclopædia.

On the other hand, it is allowed that heat in May hastens the ripening of the victual, though it may be prematurely :

March dust and May sun
Maks corn white and maidens dun.
So alleges a Perthshire rhyme, which, however, is varied in the Mearns :
March water and May sun
Maks claes clear and maidens dun.
The explanation of this is, that water in the month of March is of a more cleansing quality than in any other month, as expressed in a proverb in that county, March water is worth May soap.
      There is another ungracious rhyme about the favourite month of the poets—
Till May be out
Change na a clout :
That is, thin not your winter clothing till the end of May—a good maxim, if we are to put faith in the great father of modern medicine, Boerhaave, who, on being consulted as to the proper time for putting off flannel, is said to have answered, " On midsummer night, and—put it on again next morning !"
      This may be the most proper place to introduce a rhyme expressive of the different sensations which attend similar experiences when they are new and when they are old :
The Lentren even's lang and teuch,
But the hairst even tumbles ower the heuch.
The evening in harvest is of the same length as in Lent, but passes more quickly to appearance, from being a greater novelty.

The Michaelmas moon
Rises nine nights alike soon.
Michaelmas is the 29th of September—the close of harvest. The above rhyme describes a simple astronomical phenomenon which takes place at that season, and which is usually called in England the Harvest Moon. As the moon moves from west to east about thirteen degrees every day, she rises generally about fifty minutes later every evening. Her orbit, however, being considerably inclined to the equator, does not always make the same angle with the horizon. When her orbit is most oblique to the horizon, which happens when she is in the beginning of Aries, the thirteen degrees of her orbit which she recedes daily, rise in seventeen minutes ; whereas, in the opposite case, the time required is one hour and seventeen minutes. Of course, this phenomenon occurs every month ; but, generally happening when the lunar orb is not full, it is not remarked. In September, however, the sun is in Virgo and Libra, the signs opposite to Pisces and Aries. The moon, of course, only can be full when the sun is opposite to her. Rising nearly at the same time for several nights when in her greatest splendour, and when her light is considered as useful both in drying the cut grain and lighting the husbandman to his unusual labours, the phenomenon impresses the mind, raising at the same time, as it ought to do, sentiments of admiration and gratitude for the beneficent wisdom which planned an arrangement so useful to the inhabitants of the earth.

As the day lengthens,
The cold strengthens.
The Italians say, Cresce di cresce'l freddo, dice il pescador. Ray gives, as explanation, that early in winter the heat imparted to the earth in summer has not been dissipated, and that it is some time after the winter solstice ere the heat of the sun has again had   p.40 /   any considerable effect in dispelling the cold which has for some time been accumulating.

Of the rhymes respecting immediate and temporary weather, the most common are those which deduce the obvious fact of a near access of rain from the mists on the tops of hills. Every district in Scotland has a rhyme of that kind, with little variation except what is necessary to admit the name of the most conspicuous mountain or mountains of the respective districts. Thus, in Roxburghshire, they say—
When Ruberslaw puts on his cowl,
    The Dunion on his hude,*
Then a' the wives o' Teviotside
    Ken there will be a flude.
  This is a very common metaphor. Schiller says, in Wilhelm Tell :—
Der Mytenstein zieht seine Haube an.
[Mytenstein takes on its hood.]

In Forfarshire, Craigowl and Collie-law, two eminences in the Sidlaw range, are substituted for Ruberslaw and the Dunion, and the " Lundy lads" for the wives o' Teviotside. Sometimes the rhyme is confined to the fact, that, when mist descends on one hill-top, it soon appears on those near it—as, in Annandale—
When Criffel wears a hap,†
Skiddaw wots full well o' that.
  Any stout exterior garment for protection against cold is called in Scotland a " hap."

And in Galloway—
When Criffel wears a cap,
Skreel gets word o' that.
And in Haddingtonshire—
When Traprain puts on his hat,
The Lothian lads may look to that.
The hills, indeed, by their attracting and precipitating rain, serve as natural barometers all over Scotland.

      Foggy weather in the last quarter of the moon is held to betoken pluvious weather.
Auld moon mist
Ne'er died o' thirst.

      Deductions as to weather from the wind must of course depend altogether on local circumstances. In Forfarshire, which lies on the east coast of Scotland, with a long stretch of country intervening between its borders and the opposite sea, the following rhyme is applicable :—
When the carry ‡  gaes west,
Gude weather is past ;
When the carry gaes east,
Gude weather comes neist.
  The current of the clouds.

In Selkirkshire and Peeblesshire, which enjoy a central situation and are not far distant from the sea in any direction, they say—
When the wind's in the north,
Hail comes forth ;
When the wind's in the wast,
Look for a wat blast ;
When the wind's in the soud,
The weather will be fresh and good ;
When the wind's in the east,
Cauld and snaw comes neist.

      " Sea-faring men say—
A rainbow in the morning—sailors take warning ;
A rainbow at night is the sailor's delight.
And shepherds assent to the truth of this old adage. In the former case (as the arch must be opposite the sun), it appears in the west, whence our rains generally come ; in the latter it irradiates the east, and indicates that the rain is passing from us."—Stat. Account of Scotland, article Yarrow.

      The following simple couplet is prevalent throughout the whole of Scotland, and, with slight variations, is also common in England :—
The evening red and the morning grey,
Are the tokens of a bonnie day.

      Perhaps, after all, the most sensible of the meteorological rhymes is the following, which we give as a wind-up :—
To talk of the weather, it's nothing but folly,
For when it's rain on the hill, it may be sun in the valley.

squiggly rulesquiggly rule


HIS is a pleasing class of rhymes. Most of them have evidently taken their rise in the imaginations of the young, during that familiar acquaintance with natural objects which it is one of the most precious privileges of youth in rural situations to enjoy. A few of them may be said to rise to genuine poetry.

      There is an East Lothian rhyme upon a sunny shower, which, we must confess, has always been melody to our own ears. It is shouted by boys, when their sport is interrupted by that peculiar phenomenon:—
Sunny sunny shouir
Come on for half an hour ;
Gar a' the hens couir,
    Gar a' the sheep clap ;
Gar ilka wife in Lammermuir
    Put on her kail-pat.
      Youngsters may also be heard in a Scottish village apostrophising rain as follows :—
Rain, rain,
Gang to Spain,
And never come back again.
Or thus :
Rainie, rainie,   .   .   .
    Dinna rain on me,
But rain on Johnie Groats' House,
    Far ower the sea.

      When they see heaven's coloured arch displayed, they cry in chorus—
Rainbow, rainbow, run away hame,
The cow's to calf, the yowe's to lamb.

      When snow is seen falling for the first time in the   p.41 /   season, the youngsters account for it in the following poetical way :—
The men o' the East
Are pyking their geese,
And sending their feathers here away, here away !

      In a similar strain of metaphor is their riddle on a high wind :—
Arthur o' Bower has broken his bands,
And he's come roaring ower the lands ;
The King o' Scots, and a' his power,
Canna turn Arthur o' Bower.

      In an enigmatical couplet on mist, there is the same turn for idealisation :—
Banks fou,* braes fou,
Gather ye a' the day, ye'll no gather your neives† fou.

      The metaphorical character and melodiousness of the following never fail to delight children :—
I had a little sister, they called her Peep-Peep ;
She waded the waters so deep, deep, deep ;
She climb'd up the mountains so high, high, high ;
And, poor little thing, she had but one eye !

      The following is in a less elegant but not less fanciful style. It alludes to the Man in the moon, who, according to a half-jesting fiction, founded upon a fact mentioned in Exodus, is said to have been placed there by way of punishment, for gathering sticks on the Sabbath day. The allusion to Jerusalem pipes is curious : Jerusalem is often applied in Scottish popular fiction to things of a nature above this world :—
I sat upon my houtie croutie, ‡
I lookit ower my rumple routie ; §
And saw John Heezlum Peezlum,
Playing on Jerusalem pipes.
   The haunch.

      Some of the rhymes on birds are the most poetical of all those that refer to animate objects. The minds of young people, and of a nation in its earlier stages, are apt to be interested, to an unusual degree, in this beautiful class of created beings. Accordingly, we find more verses, and those in many cases much more pleasing, upon birds, than upon any other department of natural history. What, for instance, could be more poetical than the puerile malediction upon those who rob the nest of the wren—a bird considered sacred, apparently on account of its smallness, its beauty, and its innocence ?
Malisons, malisons, mair than ten,
That harry the Ladye of Heaven's hen !
For such is the title given to the wren by boys—even when engaged in the unhallowed sport of bird-nesting ; on which occasions they may be heard singing this rhyme at the top of their voices. There is another popular notion respecting the wren, namely, that it is the wife of the robin redbreast. Upon this idea is grounded a curious allegorical song in Herd's Collection, to the tune of Lennox' Love to Blantyre :—

" The Wren she lyes in care's bed,
      In care's bed, in care's bed ;
  The wren she lyes in care's bed,
      In meikle dule and pyne, O.

  When in cam Robin Redbreist,
      Redbreist, Redbreist ;
  When in cam Robin Redbreist,
      Wi' succar-saps and wine, O.

  Now, maiden, will ye taste o' this,
      Taste o' this, taste o' this ;
  Now, maiden, will ye taste o' this ?
      'Tis succar-saps and wine, O.

  Na, ne'er a drap, Robin,
      Robin, Robin ;
  Na, ne'er a drap, Robin,
      Though it were ne'er so fine, O.

  And where's the ring that I gied ye,
      That I gied ye, that I gied ye ;
  And where's the ring that I gied ye,
      Ye little cutty quean, O ?

  I gied it till a sodger,
      A sodger, a sodger,
  I gied it till a sodger,
      A true sweit-heart o' mine, O."

      In reference to this matrimonial alliance between these two beautiful birds, and also to their sacred character, the boys have the following distich :—
The robin and the wren
Are God's cock and hen.*
  Mr Hone gives a Warwickshire rhyme to the same effect:—
" The robin and the wren
   Are God Almighty's cock and hen :
   The martin and the swallow
   Are God Almighty's bow and arrow."

And they are also included in a list of birds whose nests it is deemed unlucky to molest :—
The laverock† and the lintie,‡
    The robin and the wren ;
If ye harry their nests,
    Ye'll never thrive again.

    There is, however, a quatrain in which the robin and the wren are treated, in their conjugal character, very much as other mortals are among satirical writers. As a description of a squabble between man and wife, in a small way, it is not amiss :—
The robin redbreast and the wran,
Coost out about the parritch-pan ;
And or the robin gat a spune,
The wran she had the parritch dune.

       The stone-chat, which is commonly called in Scotland the stane-chacker, is exempted from the woes and pains of harrying, but only in consequence of a malediction which the bird itself is fancifully supposed to be always pronouncing. The Galloway version of this malison is here subjoined :—
Stane-chack !
Deevil tak !
They wha harry my nest
Will never rest,
Will meet the pest !
De'il brack their lang back,
Wha my eggs wad tak, tak !
In some districts of Scotland, there is an aversion to the stone-chat, on account of a superstitious notion that it contains a drop of the devil's blood, and that its eggs are hatched by the toad.

      The dolorous cry of the lapwing, called in Scotland the peese-weep, has attracted the attention of children, and been signified in one of their rhymes :—
Peese-weep, peese-weep,
Harry my nest, and gar me greet !

p.42 /

This has at least the merit of being very appropriate to the character of the bird. The lapwing makes its nest upon the ground, in lonely and desolate situations ; and when any human being approaches, its instinct directs it to come flying near, with its wailing peevish cry, and endeavour, by fluttering hither and thither, to lead the intruder away from its lowly home. In certain parts of Scotland, there is a traditionary antipathy to the bird, on account of its having sometimes served, during the persecuting times, to point out the retreats of the unfortunate Presbyterians, who had, for conscience' sake, made themselves its companions on the wild.

      The boys in Scotland have a superstitious feeling respecting the yellow hammer, called by them the yellow yite, and, when they see it, exclaim, in reference to its mysterious nature—
Half a paddock,* half a taed,†
Half a drap o' deil's blude,
    On a May morning.

They are also much puzzled about the birds and insects which disappear in winter : the general idea is, that they all exist, during that season, in a state of dormancy :—
The bat, the bee, the butterflie,
    The cuckoo‡ and the swallow
The corncraik § and the nightingale,
    They a' sleep in the hallow.
  The boys of South Britain have a rhyme involving the whole summer's history of this bird—
In April,
The cuckoo shows his bill ;
In May,
He sings all day ;
In June,
He alters his tune ;
In July,
He prepares to fly ;
Come August,
Go he must.
      There is also an English nursery song on the cuckoo, as follows :—
The cuckoo's a fine bird,
    He sings as he flies ;
He brings us good tidings,
    He tells us no lies.

He sucks little birds' eggs
    To make his voice clear ;
And when he sings " cuckoo !"
    The summer is near.

It may be observed, that the common notion as to the sucking of other birds' eggs by the cuckoo, has lately been questioned by naturalists. Perhaps it is not altogether unfounded ; but certainly insects and larvæ form the staple of the food of this as of most British birds of the same order.
      The Germans connect the cuckoo with good weather, and countrymen do not like to hear it before June, because, they say, the sooner he comes, the sooner will he go. Boys, in that country, on hearing the cuckoo for the first time, cry, " Cuckoo, how long am I to live ?"   They then count the cuckoo's cries, by the number of which they judge of the years yet to be allowed to them.

    §   The rail.

      The rapacious and unsocial character of the carrion crow, and the peculiar sounds of its voice, have given rise to curious notions respecting it among the rustic classes. The lonely shepherd who overhears a pair croaking behind a neighbouring hillock or enclosure, amuses his fancy by forming regular dialogues out of their conversation—thus, for instance :—
A hoggie dead ! a hoggie dead ! a hoggie dead !—
Oh, where ?   Oh, where ?   Oh, where ?—
Down i' 'e park ! down i' 'e park ! down i' 'e park !—
Is't fat ?  is't fat ?  is't fat ?—
Come try !   come try !   come try !
So in Galloway ; but thus in Tweeddale :—
Sekito says, there's a hog dead !—
Where ?  where ?—
Up the burn !  up the burn !
Is't fat ?  is't fat ?
'T's a' creesh !  't's a' creesh !

Buy tobacco, buy tobacco,
    I'll pay a' !
     This is the boys' interpretation of the cackle of the hen, being understood as an address from Dame Partlet to the old woman her mistress, encouraging her to partake freely of her favourite indulgence, on the strength of the addition just made to her wealth.
      Sir Walter Scott was one day sitting drowsily after dinner at Abbotsford, with a rural friend, when the twilight silence of the room was broken by the distant sound of the cackle of a hen. Immediately, to the no small amusement of his companion, the good-humoured host broke out with, " Buy tobacco, buy tobacco, I'll pay a' ! "  making a most ludicrous attempt to rise the octave at the conclusion, in which, it is hardly necessary to say (his musical gift being so slender), he most signally failed.

The merle and the blackbird,
    The laverock and the lark,
The gouldy and the gowdspink,
    How many birds is that ?

The laverock and the lark,
    The baukie and the bat,
The heather-bleet, the mire-snipe,
    How many birds be that ?

" Six" would probably be a Southron's answer. In reality, only three in each case, the two words in each line being synonymes.
Infir taris, inoknonis,
Inmudeelsis, inclaynonis.
        Canamaretots ?
This, being pronounced very fast, is somewhat puzzling. The following is a key :—
In fir tar is, in oak none is,
In mud eels is, in clay none is.
        Can a mare eat oats ?

      Fishes are the only other order of vertebrate animals on which the boys of Scotland have exercised their rhyming powers. The wry mouth of the flounder has given rise to the following, which is popular in Kincardineshire :—
Said the trout to the fluke,
When did your mou' crook !
My mou' was never even,
Since I cam by John's Haven.
John's Haven being a fishing-village in that county.

      A semi-metrical proverb expresses the season at   p.43 /   which the haddock and some other articles of aliment are supposed to be at their best :—
A Januar haddock,
A Februar bannock
    And a March pint o' ale.
This, however, as far as the haddock is concerned, would appear questionable, as there is an almost universal notion that the young of this fish, at least, are best after a little of May has gone. Thus in the Mearns—
A cameral haddock's ne'er gude,
Till it get three draps o' May flude.

      Boys, finding an eel, will say to it—
Eelie, eelie, ator,
Cast a knot upon your tail,
And I'll throw ye in water.
So in Peeblesshire ;  but in the Mearns—
Eelie, eelie, cast your knot,
And ye'll get back to your water-pot.
The object, after all, being to cause the animal to wriggle for their amusement.

The herring loves the merry moonlight,
    The mackerel loves the wind,
But the oyster loves the dredging-sang,
    For they come of a gentle kind.
Scott puts the above into the mouth of Elspeth Mucklebacket, in " The Antiquary." A dredging-song, a strange jumble of nonsense, is given in Herd's Collection. One couplet of it presents the reason for the use of such ditties :—
The oysters are a gentle kin,
They winna tak unless ye sing.

      The fact of the muscle not being in season in summer is indicated by
When the pea's in bloom,
The mussel's toom ;
that is, empty.

      This pretty small insect (scientifically called coccinella septem-punctata, being a member of the great order Coleoptera), seems to have excited the imagination of the young in all countries where it exists. In Germany, where it is called Marienwürmchen (the Virgin Mary's chafer), nearly a translation of our own appellation, there is a beautiful song to it, to be found in the preface to German Popular Stories, by the late Edgar Taylor. The Scottish youth are accustomed to throw it into the air, singing at the same time—
Lady, Lady Landers,
Fly away to Flanders !
Or, in Kincardineshire,
King, King Gollowa,
Up your wings and flie awa' ;
Over land and over sea,
Tell me where my love can be !
In England, children are accustomed to throw the insect into the air, to make it open its wings and take to flight, singing—
Lady-bird, lady-bird, fly away home,
Your house is afire, your children's at home.
At Vienna, the children do the same thing, crying—
Käferl', käferl', käferl',
Flieg nach Mariabrunn,
Und bring uns ä schone sun.
That is as much as to say, in the language of a Scottish youth—
Little birdie, little birdie,
Fly to Marybrunn,
And bring us hame a fine sun.
Marybrunn being a place about twelve English miles from the Austrian capital, with a miracle-working image of the Virgin, who often sends good weather to the merry Viennese. The lady-bird is always connected with fine weather in Germany.

      In some districts it is supposed that good weather is indicated by the snail obeying the injunction contained in the following rhyme :—
Snail, snail, shoot out your horn,
And tell us if it will be a bonnie day the morn.*
  In England, the snail scoops out hollows, little rotund chambers in limestone, for its residence. This habit of the animal is so important in its effects, as to have attracted the attention of geologists, one of the most distinguished of whom (Dr Buckland) alluded to it at the meeting of the British Association at Plymouth in 1841. The following rhyme is a boy's invocation to the snail to come out of such holes, and other places of retreat resorted to by it—
Snail, snail, come out of your hole,
Or else I will beat you as black as a coal.

     A Forfarshire rhyme—
The todler tyke has a very gude byke,
    And sae has the gairy bee ;
But leeze me on the little red-doup,
    The best o' a' the three.

      The rhymes respecting the vegetable kingdom are comparatively few. Reference is supposed to be made to some old law in the following :—
The aik, the ash, the elm tree,
They are hanging a' three.
That is, it is capital to mutilate these trees.
      In Fife, children thus address a little plant usually called in Scotland the curly doddy :—
Curly doddy, do my biddin',
Soop my house and shool my middin.
      Those of Galloway play at hide-and-seek with a little black-topped flower which they call the davie-drap, saying—
Within the bounds of this I hap,
My black and bonnie davie-drap :
Wha is here, the cunning ane,
To me my davie-drap will fin'.
      The following is a riddle on the nettle :—
Heg-beg adist †  the dyke, and Heg-beg ahint the dyke,
If ye touch Heg-beg, Heg-beg will gar ye fyke. ‡
  On this side of.
  Make you very uneasy.

Another riddle :—
Riddle me, riddle me, rot, tot, tot,
A little wee man in a red red coat ;
A staff in his hand and a stane in his throat,
Riddle me, riddle me, rot, tot, tot.
Explanation—a cherry.

p.44 /


OTHING has of late been revolutionised so much as the nursery. The young mind was formerly cradled amidst the simplicities of the uninstructed intellect ; and she was held to be the best nurse who had the most copious supply of song, and tale, and drollery, at all times ready to soothe and amuse her young charges. There were, it is true, some disadvantages in the system, for sometimes superstitious terrors were implanted, and little pains were taken to distinguish between what tended to foster the evil, and what tended to elicit the better feelings of infantine nature. Yet the ideas which presided over the scene, and rung through it all day in light gabble and jocund song, were really simple ideas, often even beautiful, and were unquestionably suitable to the capacities of children. In the realism and right-down earnest which is now demanded in the superiors of the nursery, and which mothers seek to cultivate in their own intercourse with the young, there are certain advantages ; yet it is questionable if the system be so well adapted to the early state of the faculties, while there can be little doubt that it is too exclusively addressed to the intellect, and almost entirely overlooks that there is such a thing as imagination, or a sense of fun in the human mind. We must own that we cannot help looking back with the greatest satisfaction to the numberless merry lays and capriccios of all kinds, which the simple honest women of our native country used to sing and enact with such untiring patience and so much success beside the evening fire in old times, ere yet Mrs Trimmer or Mr Wilderspin had been heard of. There was no philosophy about these gentle dames ; but there was generally endless kindness, and a wonderful power of keeping their little flock in good humour. It never occurred to them that children were any thing but children : " bairns are just bairns," they would say ; and they never once thought of beginning to make them men and women while still little more than able to speak. Committed as we were in those days to such unenlightened curatrixes, we might be said to go through in a single life all the stages of a national progress. We began under a superintendence which might be said intellectually to represent the Gothic age ; and, gradually, as we waxed in years, and went to school and college, we advanced through the fourteenth and sixteenth centuries ; finally coming down to the present age when we adventured into public life. By the extinction of the old nursery system, some part of this knowledge is lost.
      With these observations, we introduce a series of the rhymes and legends of the old Scottish nursery ; trusting that all who, like us, can be " pleased again with toys which childhood please," will be glad to see them at least preserved from the utter oblivion which threatens to befall them.

He-ba-laliloo !
     This is the simplest of the lullaby ditties of the north. It has been conjectured by the Rev. Mr Lamb, in his notes to the old poem of Flodden Field, that this is from the French, as Hê bas ! là le loup ! (Hush ! there's the wolf) ; but the bugbear character of this French sentence makes the conjecture, in our opinion, extremely improbable.
      If it be curious to learn, as we do from the Greek poet Moschus, that " Bh !" was the cry of the sheep two thousand years ago, as it is now, it may be also worthy of attention that Ba loo la loo was a Scottish lullaby in the time of our James VI., if not at a much earlier period. This is ascertained from the well-known production of the pious genius of that age, entitled " Ane Compendious Book of Godly and Spirituall Sangs," published by Andro Hart in 1621 ; the object of which was to supplant ordinary profane songs by adapting religious verses to the tunes to which they were sung. One of the said " spiritual sangs" is to the tune of Baw lula low, unquestionably a lullaby ditty, as more clearly appears from the character of the substituted verses, whereof the following are specimens :—
" Oh, my deir hert, young Jesus sweit,
   Prepare thy creddil in my spreit,
   And I sall rock thee in my hert,
   And never mair from thee depart.

   But I sall praise thee evermoir,
   With sangis sweit unto thy gloir ;
   The knees of my hert sall I bow,
   And sing that richt Balulalow ! "

Hushie ba, burdie beeton !
Your mammie's gane to Seaton,
For to buy a lammie's skin,
To wrap your bonnie boukie in.*

Bye, babie buntin,
Your daddie's gane a-huntin ;
Your mammie's gane to buy a skin
To row the babie buntin in.

  Boukie is the endearing diminutive of bouk or bulk, signifying person.
Hush and baloo, babie,
    Hush and baloo ;
A' the lave's in their beds—
    I'm hushin' you.

O can ye sew cushions,
    Can ye sew sheets,
Can ye sing, Ba-loo-loo,
    When the bairnie greets ?

And hee and ba, birdie,
    And hee and ba, lamb ;
And hee and ba, birdie,
    My bonnie lamb !

Hee O, wee O,
    What wad I do wi' you ?
Black is the life
    That I lead wi' you.

Ower mony o' you,
    Little for to gie you ;
Hee O, wee O,
    What wad I do wi' you ? †

  This song, with its air, which is very pretty, is to be found in Johnson's Scots Musical Museum, vol. v. p. 456.

Poussikie, poussikie, wow !
Where'll we get banes to chow ?
    We'll up the bog,
    And worry a hogg,
And then we'll get banes enow.

My codlin trout, my codlin trout,
I couldna fa' in wi' my codlin trout ;
I sought a' the braes about,
But I couldna fa' in wi' my codlin trout.

TUNEBrose and Butter.
A' the nicht ower and ower,
    And a' the nicht ower again,
A' the nicht ower and ower,
    The peacock followed the hen.

The hen's a hungry beast,
    The cock is hallow within ;
There's nae deceit in a pudding,
    A pie's a dainty thing !
And a' the nicht ower and ower—Da capo.

p.45 /

There was a hennie had a bird,
And the birdy it flew out,
And she sought it east and wast,
And she got it at the last,
Draggled in a deuk's nest ;
And she bad it gang awa' hame,
Wi' a cauld back and a hungry wame.

Cleaverie, cleaverie, sit i' the sun,
And let the weary herdies in ;
A' weetie, a' wearie,
A' droukit, a' drearie.
I haena gotten a bite the day,
But a drap o' cauld sowens, sitting i' the blind bole :
By cam a cripple bird, and trailed its wing ower ;
I up wi' my rung, and hit it i' the lug :
" Cheep, cheep," quo' the bird ; "Clock, clock," quo' the hen ;
" Fient care I, quo' the cock, " come na yon road again."
—From recitation in Forfarshire.

There was a wee yowe,
Hippin frae knowe to knowe :
It lookit up to the mune,
And saw mae ferlies na fyfteen :
It took a fit in ilka hand,
And hippit awa' to Airland ;
Frae Airland to Aberdeen :
And whan the yowe cam hame again,
The gudeman was outbye herdin the kye ;
The swine were in the spence,* makin the whey ;
The gudewife was butt an' ben, tinklin the keys,
And lookin ower lasses makin at the cheese ;
The cat in the asse-hole, makin at the brose—
Down fell a cinner, and burnt the cat's nose,
And it cried Yeowe, yeowe, yeowe, &c.
—From recitation in Ayrshire.


Play, pan, play,
And gie the bairn meat, it's gotten nane the day.
—Sung while preparing pap.

Greedy gaits' o' Galloway,
Taks a' the bairn's meat away !
—Said in rebuke of elder urchins, who attempt to come in for a share of the said pap.

In cam the daddy o't,
    And he cried, " Ochone !"
" Oh," quo' the mammy o't,
    " My bairn's gone !"

Some kissed the kitling,
    And some kissed the cat ;
And some kissed the wee wean
    Wi' the straw hat.

—Sung to soothe children, when crying on being dressed.

Girnigo Gibbie,
The cat's gude-minny :
—Said to peevish children in Annandale. In Forfarshire, the following is the favourite rhyme for the same occasion —
Sandy Slag,
Is there ony butter in your bag,
Is there ony meal in your mitten,
To gie a puir wife's greetin little ane ?

      The old-fashioned Scottish nurses were rich in expedients for amusing infants. No sooner had the first faint dawn of the understanding appeared, than the faithful attendant was ready to engage it with some practical drollery, so as to keep it in good humour, and exercise the tender faculties. One of the first whimsicalities practised was to take the two feet of the infant, and make them go quickly up and down and over each other, saying the following appropriate verses:—
This is Willie Walker, and that's Tam Sim,
He ca'd him to a feast, and he ca'd him ;
And he sticket him wi' the spit, and he sticket him,
And he ower him, and he ower him.
And he ower him, and he ower him, &c.
         Till day brak.

Or the following—
" Feetikin, feetikin,
   When will ye gang ?"
" When the nichts turn short
   And the days turn lang,
I'll toddle and gang, toddle and gang," &c.

      Arms as well as legs were sometimes taken into these little jocularities ; and then the following verses were used :—
The doggies gaed to the mill,
    This way and that way ;
They took a lick out o' this wife's pock,
And a lick out o' that wife's pock,
And a loup in the lead,* and a dip in the dam,
And gaed hame walloping, walloping, walloping, &c.
  The mill-course.

      Sometimes the babe was considered as a piece of cooper-work, requiring to be mended ; and the following verses accompanied the supposed process :—
" Donald Couper, carle," quo' she,
    " Can ye gird my cogie ?"
" Couthie carline, that I can,
    As weel's ony bodie.

There ane about the mou' o't,
And ane about the body o't,
And ane about the leggen o't,
    And that's a girdit cogie !"

      At another time, the infant was a little horse requiring to have a new shoe put on ; and it was supposed to be put into the hands of a farrier accordingly, the foot being taken and smartly patted in various places, in accordance with the accompanying verses :—
" John Smith, fallow fine,
Can you shoe this horse o' mine ?"
" Yes, sir, and that I can,
As weel as ony man !
There's a nail upon the tae,
To gar the powny speel the brae ;
There's a nail upon the heel,
To gar the powny pace weel ;
There's a nail and there's a brod,
There's a horsie weel shod,
        Weel shod, weel shod," &c.

      The following is an accompaniment to a game of pretended thumps :—
Bontin's man
To the town ran :
He coff'd and sold,
And penny down told :
The kirk was ane, and the quier was twa,
And a great muckle thump down aboon a',
Doun aboon a', doun aboon a'.

      To accompany the exercise of dandling, they had a little song sung to a very pretty air :

p.46 /

       Dance to your daddie,
       My bonnie laddie,
Dance to your daddie, my bonnie lamb !
       And ye'll get a fishie,
       In a little dishie—
Ye'll get a fishie, when the boat comes hame !

        Dance to your daddie,
        My bonnie laddie,
Dance to your daddie, my bonnie lamb !
        And ye'll get a coatie,
        And a pair o' breekies—
Ye'll get a whippie and a supple Tam !

        There was a great deal of equestrian exercise in the old nursery, the knee being the ever-ready substitute for a steed. Some of the appropriate rhymes are subjoined :—
Chick ! my naggie,
Chick ! my naggie,
How many miles to Aberdaigy ?
Eight and eight, and other eight,
Try to win there wi' candle-light.

Came ye by the kirk,
    Came ye by the steeple ?
Saw ye our gudeman
    Riding on a ladle ?

Foul fa' the body,
    Winna buy a saddle,
Wearing a' his breeks,
    Riding on a ladle !

I had a little pony,
    They ca'd it Dapple Grey ;
I lent it to a lady,
    To ride a mile away.

She whipt it, she lash'd it,
    She ca'd it ower the brae ;
I winna lend my pony mair,
    Though a' the ladies pray.

The catty rade to Passelet,*
To Passelet, to Passelet ;
The catty rade to Passelet,
    Upon a harrow tine,† O.

'Twas on a weety Wednesday,
Wednesday, Wednesday ;
'Twas on a weety Wednesday,
    I miss'd it aye sin syne, O.

  An old name of Paisley.
  One of the prongs of a harrow.

      In the following case, it will be observed that the fun consists in a commencement with slow and graceful riding, degenerating into the gallop of a huckster's donkey :—
This is the way the ladies ride,
    Jimp and sma', jimp and sma' !
This is the way the gentlemen ride,
    Trotting a,' trotting a' !
This is the way the cadgers ride,
    Creels and a' ! creels and a' !! creels and a' !!!

      As the child advances in understanding, different measures are taken to please him. The nurse, touching successively his brow, eyes, nose, cheeks, mouth, and chin, pronounces the names of these features in an endearing manner :
Brow, brow, brenty,
Ee, ee, winkey,
Nose, nose, nebbie,
Cheek, cheek, cherry,
Mouth, mouth, merrie,
Chin, chin, chackie,
        Catch a flee, catch a flee.

Or, enumerating his fingers in the same manner, beginning with the thumb:
This is the man that brak the barn,
This is the man that stealt the corn,
This is the man that ran awa',
This is the man that tell't a',
And puir pirlie-winkie paid for a', paid for a', &c.

      Another play upon the fingers, making each shake quickly, begins with the little finger :
Dance my wee man, ring man, foreman, foreman,
Dance, dance, for thoomikin canna weel dance his lane.

      The following explains its own theatrical character :
I got a little manikin, I set him on my thoomikin ;
I saddled him, I bridled him, and sent him to the tooniken ;
I coffed a pair o' garters, to tie his little hosiken ;
I coffed a pocket-napkin to dight his little nosiken ;
I sent him to the garden, to fetch a pund o' sage,
And fand him in the kitchen-neuk, kissin' little Madge !

      One of the most successful modes of recalling the smile to an infantine face distorted with pain and defiled with tears, is to light a stick and make it wave rapidly to and fro, so as to produce a semicircle of red fire before the child's eyes. The following is a rhyme appropriate to this fire-side phenomenon, which is termed a " dingle dousy."
Dingle, dingle dousie,
    The cat's at the well ;
The dog's awa' to Musselburgh
    To buy the bairn a bell.

Greet, greet, hairnie,
    And ye'll get a bell ;
If ye dinna greet, bairnie,
    I'll keep it to mysel' !

      A version prevalent in Peeblesshire is more ludicrous :—
Dingle, dingle, gowd bow !*
Up the water in a low !
Far up i' Ettrick,
There was a waddin !
Twa and twa pykin' a bane ;
But I gat ane, my leefu'-lane !
Deuk's dub afore the door—
    There fell I !
A' the lave cried " Waly ! waly !"
    But I cried " Feich, fye !"
  Golden arch.

The moudiewort, the moudiewort,
The mumpin beast, the moudiewort ;
The craws hae pykit the moudiewort,
The puir wee beast, the moudiewort !

The craws hae killed the poussie, O,
The craws hae killed the poussie, O ;
The mickle cat sat down and grat
In Jeanie's wee bit housie, O.

There was a wee bit mousikie,
    That lived in Gilberaty, O,
It couldna get a bit o' cheese,
    For cheety-poussie-catty, O.

It said unto the cheesikie,
    " Oh fain wad I be at ye, O,
If it were na for the cruel paws
    O' cheety-poussie-catty, O."

p.47 /
" Poussie, poussie, baudrons,
    Whare hae ye been ?"
" I've been at London,
    Seein' the king !"

" Poussie, poussie, baudrons,
    What got ye there ?"
" I got a wee mousie,
    Rinnin' up a stair !"

" Poussie, poussie, baudrons,
    What did ye do wi't ?"
" I pat it in my meal-pock,
    To eat it to my bread !"

There was a guse,
    They ca'd it Luce,
Was paidlin in a pool-ie ;
    By cam a tod,
    Wi' mony a nod,
And bad it till it's Youl-ie.

    He took her hame,
    And [made her warm],
And pat her on a stool-ie ;
    He singet her claes,
    And burnt her claes,
And gar'd her look like a fool-ie !

Ba, wee birdie, birdie,
    Ba, wee birdie, croon ;
The ewes are awa' to the siller parks,
    The kye's amang the broom ;
The wee bits o' yowes to the heathery knowes,
    They'll no be back till noon ;
If they dinna get something ere they gang out,
    Their wee pipes will be toom.
The above is from the west of Scotland.

The silly bit chicken, gar cast her a pickle,
And she'll grow mickle, and she'll grow mickle ;
And she'll grow mickle, and she'll do gude,
And lay an egg to my little brude.
Leyden considers the above as the first verse of " a witch song."

The wife put on the wee pan,
    To boil the bairn's meatie, O ;
Out fell a cinder,
    And burnt a' its feetie, O.
       Hap and row, hap and row,
           Hap and row the feetie o't ;
       I never kent I had a bairn,
           Until I heard the greetie o't.
Sandy's mother she cam in,
    Whan she heard the greetie o't ;
She took the mutch frae her head,
    And row'd about the feetie o't.
       Hap and row, &c.

Ca' Hawkie, drive Hawkie, ca' Hawkie through the water,
Hawkie is a sweir beast, and Hawkie winna wade the water ;
But I'll cast aff my hose and shoon, and I'll drive
       Hawkie through the water.

" What ca' they you ?"
    " They ca' me Tam Taits !"
" What do ye ?"
    " Feed sheep and gaits !"
" Whare feed they ?"
    " Down i' yon bog !"
" What eat they ?"
    " Gerse and fog !" *
" What gie they ?"
    " Milk and whey !"
" What sups it ?"
    " Tam Taits and I !"
—From recitation in Perthshire.

  Grass and moss.

" Whistle, whistle, auld wife,
    And ye'se get a hen."
" I wadna whistle," quo' the wife,
    " Though ye wad gie me ten."

" Whistle, whistle, auld wife,
    And ye'se get a cock."
" I wadna whistle," quo' the wife,
    " Though ye wad gie me a flock."

" Whistle, whistle, auld wife,
    And ye'se get a man."
" Wheep-whap !" quo' the wife,
    " I'll whistle as I can."

There was a miller's dochter,
    She couldna want a babie, O ;
She took her father's greyhound,
    And rowed it in a plaidie, O.

Saying, " Hush a ba ! hush a ba !
    Hush a ba, my babie, O ;
An 'twere na for your lang beard,
    Oh, I wad kiss your gabbie, O !"

How dan, dilly dow,
   How den dan,
Weel were your minny
    An ye were a man.

Ye would hunt and hawk,
    And haud her o' game,
And water your daddie's horse
    I' the mill-dam.

How dan, dilly dow,
    How dan flours,
Ye'se lie i' your bed
    Till eleven hours.

If at ele'en hours
    You list to rise,
Ye'se hae your dinner dight
    In a new guise ;

Lav'rock's legs and titlin's taes,
And a' sic dainties my mannie shall hae.    
—Da capo.

Oh that I had ne'er been married,
    I wad never had nae care ;
Now I've gotten wife and bairns,
    And they cry, Crowdie !  ever mair.

Ance crowdie, twice crowdie,
    Three times crowdie in a day ;
Gin ye crowdie mickle mair,
    Ye'll crowdie a' my meal away.

In December 1795, Robert Burns wrote thus to his friend Mrs Dunlop : "There had need be many pleasures annexed to the states of husband and father, for, God knows, they have many peculiar cares. I cannot describe to you the anxious, sleepless hours these ties frequently give me. I see a train of helpless little folks ; me and my exertions all their stay ; and on what a brittle thread does the life of man hang ! If I am nipped off at the command of fate, even in all the vigour of manhood, as I am—such things happen every day—Gracious God ! what would become of my little flock !  'Tis here that I envy your people of fortune. A father on his deathbed, taking an everlasting leave of his children, has indeed woe enough ; but the man of competent fortune leaves his sons and daughters independency and friends ; while I—but I shall run distracted if I think any longer on the subject !
      To leave talking of the matter so gravely, I shall sing, with the old Scots ballad—
'Oh that I had ne'er been married,
     I would never had nae care ;
p.48 /
Now I've gotten wife and bairns,
    They cry Crowdie ! evermair.

Crowdie ance, crowdie twice,
    Crowdie three times in a day ;
An ye crowdie ony mair,
    Ye'll crowdie a' my meal away.'"

I had a wee cock, and I loved it well,
I fed my cock on yonder hill ;
    My cock, lily-cock, lily-cock, coo ;
    Every one loves their cock, why should not I love
                   my cock too ?

I had a wee hen, and I loved it well,
I fed my hen on yonder hill ;
    My hen, chuckie, chuckie,
    My cock, lily-cock, lily-cock, coo ;
    Every one loves their cock, why should not I love
                   my cock too ?

I had a wee duck, and I loved it well,
I fed my duck on yonder hill ;
    My duck, wheetie, wheetie,
    My hen, chuckie, chuckie,
    My cock, lily-cock, lily-cock, coo ;
    Every one loves their cock, why should not I love
                   my cock too ?

I had a wee sheep, and I loved it well,
I fed my sheep on yonder hill ;
    My sheep, maie, maie,
    My duck, wheetie, wheetie,
    My hen, chuckie, chuckie,
    My cock, lily-cock, lily-cock, coo ;
    Every one loves their cock, why should not I love
                   my cock too ?

I had a wee dog, and I loved it well,
I fed my dog on yonder hill ;
    My dog, bouffie, bouffie,
    My sheep, maie, maie,
    My duck, wheetie, wheetie,
    My hen, chuckie, chuckie,
    My cock, lily-cock, lily-cock, coo ;
    Every one loves their cock, why should not I love
                   my cock too ?

I had a wee cat, and I loved it well,
I fed my cat on yonder hill ;
    My cat, cheetie, cheetie,
    My dog, bouffie, bouffie,
    My sheep, maie, maie,
    My duck, wheetie, wheetie,
    My hen, chuckie, chuckie,
    My cock, lily-cock, lily-cock, coo ;
    Every one loves their cock, why should not I love
                   my cock too ?

I had a wee pig, and I loved it well,
I fed my pig on yonder hill ;
    My pig, squeakie, squeakie,
    My cat, cheetie, cheetie,
    My dog, bouffie, bouffie,
    My sheep, maie, maie,
    My duck, wheetie, wheetie,
    My hen, chuckie, chuckie,
    My cock, lily-cock, lily-cock, coo ;
    Every one loves their cock, why should not I love
                   my cock too ?

When first my Jamie he cam to the toun,
He had a blue bonnet—a hole in the croun ;
But noo he has gotten a hat and a feather :
Hey, Jamie, lad, cock your beaver.
       Cock your beaver, cock your beaver,
       Hey, Jamie, lad, cock your beaver !

There's gowd ahint, there's gowd afore,
There's silk in every saddle-bore ;
Silver jingling at your bridle,
And grumes to haud your horse when he stands idle.
       So cock your beaver, cock your beaver,
       Hey, Jamie lad, cock your beaver !

Tam o' the Linn and a' his bairns
Fell in the fire in others' arms ;
" Oh," quo' the boonmost, " I've got a het skin ;"
" It's hetter below," quo' Tam o' the Linn.
It would be curious to trace the name of the hero of his distich through the out-of-the-way literature of the last three centuries. The air of Thom of Lyn is one of those mentioned in the Complaynt of Scotland, 1549. The name Thomlin occurs in the Pleugh Sang, a strange medley, in Forbes's Aberdeen Cantus, a musical collection printed about the time of the Restoration :
" And if it be your proper will,
   Gar call your hynds all you till ;
   Gilkin and Willkin,
   Hankin and Rankin,
   Tarbute and Thomlin."
Dr Leyden, who points to these occurrences of the name, conjectures that it is the same with Tamlene, the hero of the fine fairy ballad in the Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border. The above rhyme was taken down from recitation in Roxburghshire.

TUNEThe Rock and the wee Pickle Tow.
There was a wee wifie, row't up in a blanket,
    Nineteen times as hie as the moon ;
And what did she there I canna declare,
    For in her oxter she bure the sun.

" Wee wifie, wee wifie, wee wifie," quo' I,
    " Oh, what are ye doin' up there sae hie ?"
" I'm blawin the cauld cluds out o' the lift :"
    " Weel dune, weel dune, wee wifie !" quo' I.

Gin ye be for lang kail,
    Cow * the nettle, cow the nettle ; †
Gin ye be for lang kail,
    Cow the nettle early.

Cow it laigh, cow it sune,
    Cow it in the month o' June ;
Juist whan it is in the blume,
    Cow the nettle early.

The auld wife wi' ae tuith,
    Cow the nettle, cow the nettle ;
The auld wife wi' ae tuith,
    Cow the nettle early.

—From recitation in the north of Ayrshire.

  Coll—i. e. to cut off the upper part of any thing.
    †   Broth is sometimes made from nettles by the Scottish poor.

    Katie Beardie had a coo,
Black and white about the mou' ;
Wasna that a dentie coo ?
           Dance, Katie Beardie !

Katie Beardie had a hen,
Cackled butt and cackled ben ;
Wasna that a dentie hen ?
           Dance, Katie Beardie !

Katie Beardie had a cock,
That could spin backin' rock ;
Wasna that a dentie cock ?
           Dance, Katie Beardie !

Katie Beardie had a grice,
It could skate upon the ice ;
Wasna that a dentie grice ?
           Dance, Katie Beardie !

There is tolerable proof that this song dates from at least the beginning of the seventeenth century.   p.49 /   "Katherine Beardie" is the name affixed to an air in a manuscript musical collection which belonged to the Scottish poet, Sir William Mure of Rowallan, and which there is good reason to believe was written by him between the years 1612 and 1628. The same tune, under the name of " Kette Bairdie," appears in a similar collection which belonged to Sir John Skene of Hallyards, and is supposed to have been written about 1629. From Mr Dauney's recent and interesting publication of this last collection, we extract the following note :—" So well did Sir Walter Scott know that this was a popular dance during the reign of James VI. [ we think it might have been fancy rather than knowledge] that * * he introduces it in the Fortunes of Nigel ; with this difference, that it is there called ' Chrichty Bairdie,' a name not precisely identical with that here given ; but as Kit is a diminutive of Christopher, it is not difficult to perceive how the two came to be confounded. ' An action,' says King James, addressing the Privy-Council on the subject of Lord Glenvarloch's misdemeanour within the precincts of the court, 'may be inconsequential or even meritorious quoad hominem, that is, as touching him upon whom it is acted, and yet most criminal quoad locum, or considering the place where it is done ; as a man may lawfully dance Chrichty Bairdie, and every other dance, in a tavern, but not inter parietes ecclesiæ.' "

" Will ye go to the wood ?" quo' Fozie Mozie ;
" Will ye go to the wood ?" quo' Johnie Rednosie ;
" Will ye go to the wood ?" quo' Foslin 'ene ;
" Will ye go to the wood ?" quo' brither and kin.

" What to do there ?" quo' Fozie Mozie ;
" What to do there ?" quo' Johnie Rednosie ;
" What to do there ?" quo' Foslin 'ene ;
" What to do there ?" quo' brither and kin.

" To slay the wren," quo' Fozie Mozie ;
" To slay the wren," quo' Johnie Rednosie ;
" To slay the wren," quo' Foslin 'ene ;
" To slay the wren," quo' brither and kin.

" What way will ye get her hame ?" quo' Fozie Mozie ;
" What way will ye get her hame ?" quo' Johnie Rednosie ;
" What way will ye get her hame ?" quo' Foslin 'ene ;
" What way will ye get her hame ?" quo' brither and kin.

" We'll hire carts and horse," quo' Fozie Mozie ;
" We'll hire carts and horse," quo' Johnie Rednosie ;
" We'll hire carts and horse," quo' Foslin 'ene ;
" We'll hire carts and horse," quo' brither and kin.

" What way will ye get her in ?" quo' Fozie Mozie ;
" What way will ye get her in ?" quo' Johnie Rednosie ;
" What way will ye get her in ?" quo' Foslin 'ene ;
" What way will ye get her in ?" quo' brither and kin.

" We'll drive down the door-cheeks," quo' Fozie Mozie ;
" We'll drive down the door-cheeks," quo' Johnie Rednosie ;
" We'll drive down the door-cheeks," quo' Foslin 'ene ;
" We'll drive down the door-cheeks," quo' brither and kin.

" I'll hae a wing," quo' Fozie Mozie ;
" I'll hae anither," quo' Johnie Rednosie ;
" I'll hae a leg," quo' Foslin 'ene ;
" And I'll hae anither," quo' brither and kin.

Gude day now, bonnie robin,
    How lang have you been here ?
Oh, I have been bird about this bush
    This mair than twenty year !

Teetle ell ell, teetle ell ell,
Teetle ell ell, teetle ell ell ;
Tee tee tee tee tee tee tee,
    Tee tee tee tee, teetle eldie.

But now I am the sickest bird
    That ever sat on brier ;
And I wad make my testament,
    Goodman, if ye wad hear.

Gar tak this bonnie neb o' mine.
    That picks upon the corn ;
And gie't to the Duke o' Hamilton,
    To be a hunting-horn.

Gar tak these bonnie feathers o' mine,
    The feathers o' my neb ;
And gie to the Lady o' Hamilton
    To fill a feather-bed.

Gar tak this gude right leg o' mine,
    And mend the brig o' Tay ;
It will be a post and pillar gude,
    It will neither bow nor gae.

And tak this other leg o' mine,
    And mend the brig o' Weir ;*
It will be a post and pillar gude,
    It'll neither bow nor steer.

Gar tak these bonnie feathers o' mine,
    The feathers o' my tail ;
And gie to the lads o' Hamilton
    To be a barn flail.

And tak these bonnie feathers o' mine,
    The feathers o' my breast ;
And gie to ony bonny lad
    That'll bring to me a priest.

Now in there came my lady wren,
    With mony a sigh and groan ;
Oh, what care I for a' the lads,
    If my wee lad be gone ?

Then Robin turn'd him round about,
    E'en like a little king ;
Go, pack ye out at my chamber-door,
    Ye little cutty quean.

Robin made his testament
    Upon a coll of hay,
And by cam a greedy gled
    And snapt him a' away.†

  A bridge across the river Gryfe in Renfrewshire.
    †   Johnie Rednosie and Robin Redbreast's Testament (excepting the chorus and last verse) appear in Herd's Collection, 1776.

The king sent his lady on the first Yule day,
A pippin go aye ;
Wha learns my carol and carries it away ?

The king sent his lady on the second Yule day,
Three partridges, a pippin go aye ;
Wha learns my carol and carries it away ?

The king sent his lady on the third Yule day,
Three plovers, three partridges, a pippin go aye
What learns my carol and carries it away ?

The king sent his lady on the fourth Yule day,
A goose that was grey,
Three plovers, three partridges, a pippin go aye ;
What learns my carol and carries it away ?

The king sent his lady on the fifth Yule day,
Three starlings, a goose that was grey,
Three plovers, three partridges, and a pippin go aye ;
Wha learns my carol and carries it away ?

p.50 /
The king sent his lady on the sixth Yule day,
Three goldspinks, three starlings, a goose that was grey,
Three plovers, three partridges, and a pippin go aye ;
Wha learns my carol and carries it away ?

The king sent his lady on the seventh Yule day,
A bull that was brown, three goldspinks, three starlings,
A goose that was grey,
Three plovers, three partidges, and a pippin go aye ;
Wha learns my carol and carries it away ?

The king sent his lady on the eighth Yule day,
Three ducks a-merry laying, a bull that was brown—
                                     [The rest to follow as before.]  

The king sent his lady on the ninth Yule day,
Three swans a-merry swimming—
                                     [As before.]

The king sent his lady on the tenth Yule day,
An Arabian baboon—
                                     [As before.]

The king sent his lady on the eleventh Yule day,
Three hinds a-merry hunting—
                                     [As before.]

The king sent his lady on the twelfth Yule day,
Three maids a-merry dancing—
                                     [As before.]

The king sent his lady on the thirteenth Yule day,
Three stalks o'merry corn, three maids a-merry dancing,
Three hinds a-merry hunting, an Arabian baboon,
Three swans a-merry swimming,
Three ducks a-merry laying, a bull that was brown,
Three goldspinks, three starlings, a goose that was grey,
Three plovers, three partridges, a pippin go aye ;
Wha learns my carol and carries it away ?

We will a' gae sing, boys ;
Where will we begin, boys ?
We'll begin the way we should,
And we'll begin at ane, boys.

Oh what will be our ane, boys ?
Oh what will be our ane, boys ?
My only ane she walks alane,
And evermair has dune, boys.

Now we will a' gae sing, boys ;
Where will we begin, boys ?
We'll begin where we left aff,
And we'll begin at twa, boys.

What will be our twa, boys ?
What will be our twa, boys ?
Twa's the lily an' the rose,
That shine baith red an' green, boys :
My only ane she walks alane,
And evermair has dune, boys.

We will a' gae sing, boys ;
Where will we begin, boys ?
We'll begin where we left aff,
And we'll begin at three, boys.

What will be our three, boys ?
What will be our three, boys ?
Three, three thrivers ;
Twa's the lily an' the rose,
That shine baith red an' green, boys :
My only ane she walks alane,
And evermair has dune, boys.

We will a' gae sing, boys,
Where will we begin, boys ?
We'll begin where we left aff,
And we'll begin at four, boys.

What will be our four, boys ?
What will be our four, boys ?
Four's the gospel-makers ;
Three, three, thrivers ;
Twa's the lily an' the rose,
That shine baith red an' green, boys :
My only ane she walks alane,
And evermair has dune, boys.

We will a' gae sing, boys ;
Where will we begin, boys ?
We'll begin where we left aff,
And we'll begin at five, boys.

What will be our five, boys ?
What will be our five, boys ?
Five's the hymnlers o' my bower ;
Four's the gospel-makers ;
Three, three, thrivers ;
Twa's the lily an' the rose,
That shine baith red an' green, boys :
My only ane she walks alane,
And evermair has dune, boys.

We will a' gae sing, boys ;
Where will we begin, boys ?
We'll begin where we left aff,
And we'll begin at six, boys.

What will be our six, boys ?
What will be our six, boys ?
Six the echoing waters ;
Five's the hymnlers o' my bower ;
Four's the gospel-makers ;
Three, three, thrivers ;
Twa's the lily an' the rose,
That shine baith red an' green, boys :
My only ane she walks alane,
And evermair has dune, boys.

We will a' gae sing, boys ;
Where will we begin, boys ?
We'll begin where we left aff,
And we'll begin at seven, boys.

What will be our seven, boys ?
What will be our seven, boys ?
Seven is the stars o' heaven–
           [The rest to be repeated as before.]

We will a' gae sing, boys ;
Where will we begin, boys ? &c.

What will be our eight, boys ?
What will be our eight, boys ?
Eight's the table rangers—
           [As before.]

We will a' gae sing, boys, &c.

What will be our nine, boys ?
What will be our nine, boys ?
Nine's the Muses o' Parnassus—
           [As before.]

We will a' gae sing, boys, &c.

What will be our ten, boys ?
What will be our ten, boys ?
Ten's the Ten Commandments—
           [As before.]

We will a' gae sing, boys, &c.

What will be our eleven, boys ?
What will be our eleven, boys ?
Eleven's maidens in a dance—
           [As before.]

We will a' gae sing, boys ;
Where will we begin, boys ?
We'll begin where we left aff,
And we'll begin at twelve, boys.

What will be our twelve, boys ?
What will be our twelve, boys ?
Twelve's the Twelve Apostles ;
Eleven's maidens in a dance ;
Ten's the Ten Commandments ;
Nine's the Muses o' Parnassus ;

p.51 /
Eight's the table rangers ;
Seven's the stars of heaven ;
Six the echoing waters ;
Five's the hymnlers o' my bower ;
Four's the gospel-makers ;
Three, three, thrivers ;
Twa's the lily an' the rose,
That shine baith red an' green, boys :
My only ane she walks alane,
And evermair has dune, boys.*

  The above two songs are from a large manuscript collection of hitherto unpublished Scottish songs, by Mr P. Buchan.
    The following is a modern composition of merit respecting the Scottish nursery Morpheus. It appears, with the name of the author, William Millar, in Whistle Binkie, a collection of songs published at Glasgow, 1841.

Wee Willie Winkie rins through the toon,
Up stairs an' doon stairs, in his nicht-gown,
Tirlin at the window, crying at the lock,
" Are the weans in their bed, for it's now ten o'clock ?"

" Hey, Willie Winkie, are ye comin ben ?
The cat's singin grey thrums to the sleepin hen,
The dog's speldert on the floor and disna gie a cheep,
But here's a waudrife laddie, that wunna fa' asleep."

Onything but sleep, you rogue, glow'ring like the moon,
Rattlin in an airn jug wi' an airn spoon,
Rumblin, tumblin roon about, crawin like a cock,
Skirlin like a kenna-what, waukenin sleepin folk.

" Hey, Willie Winkie, the wean's in a creel,
Wamblin aff a bodie's knee like a very eel,
Ruggin at the cat's lug and raveling a' her thrums—
Hey, Willie Winkie—see, there he comes !"

Wearit is the mither that has a stoorie wean,
A wee, stumpie, stousie, that canna rin his lane,
That has a battle aye wi' sleep afore he'll close an e'e—
But a kiss frae aff his rosy lips gies strength anew to me.


squiggly rulesquiggly rule


HAT man of middle-age or above it does not remember the tales of drollery and wonder which used to be told by the fireside, in cottage and in nursery, by the old women time out of mind the vehicles for such traditions ? These stories were in general of a simple kind, befitting the minds which they were to regale ; but, in many instances, they displayed considerable fancy, at the same time that they derived an inexpressible charm from a certain antique air which they had brought down with them from the world of their birth—a world still more primitive and rude and romantic than that in which they were told, old as it now appears to us. They breathed of a time when society was in its simplest elements, and the most familiar natural things were as yet unascertained from the supernatural. It seems not unlikely that they had been handed down from very early ages—from the mythic times of our Gothic history—undergoing, of course, great change, in accordance with the changing character of the people, but yet, like the wine in the Heidelberg tun, not altogether renewed.
      Dr Leyden, in his learned dissertation on the Complaynt of Scotland, has alluded to some of these ancient fabliaux of the nursery, as having existed in his infancy. He speaks of the tale of
Arthur Knight, who raid on night,
With gilten spur and candle-light ;
of " the Black Bull of Norroway," " the Red-Etin," " The Pure Tynt Rashycoat,"† and that of " The Walle o' the Warld's End." Mr Peter Buchan, formerly of Peterhead, has made a collection of these stories, which he has obligingly submitted for use on the present occasion.

  Poor Lost Rushycoat—that is, a person with a coat made of rushes.

      The following section is composed of somewhat various materials, comprehending, first, some of the simplest narratives of the Scottish nursery, in prose and verse, and, second, a selection of the apparently far-descended tales above described.

      There was a wife that had a bonnie buss o' berries, and she wanted to pu' them ; but she couldna do that unless she had somebody to keep her house. So she gaed away to a kid, and said, " Kid, kid, come and keep my house till I pu' my bonnie buss o' berries."
      " Deed no," says the kid, " I'll no keep your house till ye pu' your bonnie buss o' berries."
      Then the wife gaed to the dog, and said, " Dog, dog, bite kid ; kid winna keep my house till I pu' my bonnie buss o' berries."
      " Deed," says the dog, " I'll no bite the kid, for the kid never did me ony ill."
      Then the wife gaed to a staff, and said, " Staff, staff, strike dog ; for dog winna bite kid, and kid winna keep my house," &c.
      " Deed," says the staff, " I winna strike the dog, for the dog never did me ony ill."
      Then the wife gaed to the fire, and said, " Fire, fire, burn staff ; staff winna strike dog, dog winna bite kid," &c.
      " Deed," says the fire, " I winna burn the staff, for the staff never did me ony ill."
      Wife. " Water, water, slocken fire ; fire winna," &c.
      " Deed," says the water, " I winna slocken fire, for fire never did me ony ill."
      Wife. " Ox, ox, drink water ; water winna slocken fire," &c.
      " Deed," says the ox, " I winna drink water, for water never did me ony ill."
      Wife. "Axe, axe, fell ox ; ox winna drink water," &c.
      " Deed," says the axe, " I winna fell ox, for ox never did me ony ill."
      Wife. " Smith, smith, smooth axe ; axe winna," &c.
      " Deed," says the smith, " I winna smooth axe, for axe never did me ony ill."
      Wife. " Rope, rope, hang smith ; smith winna smooth axe," &c.
      " Deed," says the rope, " I winna hang the smith, for the smith never did me ony ill."
      Wife. "Mouse, mouse, cut rope ; rope winna hang smith," &c.
      " Deed," says the mouse, " I winna cut rope, for the rope never did me ony ill."
      Wife. "Cat, cat, kill mouse ; mouse winna cut rope ; rope winna hang smith ; smith winna smooth axe ; axe winna fell ox ; ox winna drink water ; water winna slocken fire ; fire winna burn staff ; staff winna strike dog ; dog winna bite kid ; kid winna keep my house till I pu' my bonnie buss o' berries."
      " Deed," says the cat, " I winna kill the mouse, for the mouse never did me ony ill."
      Wife. " Do't, and I'll gie ye milk and bread."
      Wi' that, the cat to the mouse, and the mouse to the rope, and the rope to the smith, and the smith to the axe, and the axe to the ox, and the ox to the water, and the water to the fire, and the fire to the staff, and the staff to the dog, and the dog to the kid, and the kid keepit the wife's house till she pu'd her bonnie buss o' berries.*

  There is a similar English nursery tale—but the hero is not a kid but a refractory pig—with this rhyme :
Do, stick, beat pig, make piggie go ;
    I see by the moonlight,
    It's near past midnight,
And I should have been home an hour ago.

      A hen picking at a pease-stack, a pea fell on her head, and she thought the lifts were faun. And she   p.52 /   thought she would go and tell the king about it. And she gaed, and gaed, and gaed ; and she met a cock. And he said, " Where are ye gaun the day, henny-penny ? " And she says, " I'm gaun to tell the king the lifts are faun." And he says, " I'll gang wi' ye, henny-penny." And they gaed, and they gaed, and they gaed ; and they met a duck. And the duck says, " Where are you gaun the day, cocky-locky, henny-penny ?" " We're gaun to tell the king the lifts are faun." " I'll gang wi' you, cocky-locky, henny-penny." " Then, come awa', ducky-daddles." And they gaed, and they gaed, and they gaed ; and they met wi' a goose. And the goose says, " Where are you gaun the day, ducky-daddles, cocky-locky, henny-penny ?" " We're gaun to tell the king the lifts are faun." And he says " I'll gang wi' you, ducky-daddles, cocky-locky, henny-penny." " Then, come awa', goosie-poosie," said they. And they gaed, and they gaed, and they gaed, till they came to a wood, and there they met a tod. And the tod says, " Where are you gaun the day, goosie-poosie, ducky-daddles, cocky-locky, henny-penny ?" " We're gaun to tell the king the lifts are faun." And he says, " Come awa', and I'll let you see the road, goosie-poosie, ducky-daddles, cocky-locky, henny-penny ?" And they gaed, and they gaed, and they gaed, till they came to the tod's hole. And he shot them a' in, and he and his young anes ate them a' up, and they never got to tell the king the lifts were faun.

      (A.) Gude morning, gude fallow.   (B.) I'm no a gude fallow ; I'm a new married man.   (A.) Oh, man, that's gude !   (B.) No sae gude as ye trow.   (A.) What, then, lad?   (B.) I've got an ill-willy wife.   (A.) Oh, man, that's bad !   (B.) No sae bad as ye trow.   (A.) What, then, lad ?   (B.) She brought me a gude tocher and a weel-plenished house.   (A.) Oh, man, that's gude.   (B.) No sae gude as ye trow.   (A.) What, then, lad ?   (B.) The house took fire, and burnt baith plenishing and gear.   (A.) Oh, man, that's bad.   (B.) No sae bad as ye trow.   (A.) What, then, lad ?   (B.) The ill-willy wife was burnt i' the middle o't !

      A puir widow was ae day baking bannocks,* and sent her dochter wi' a dish to the walle o' the warld's end, to bring water. The dochter gaed, and better gaed, till she came to the walle at the warld's end, but it was dry. Now, what to do she didna ken, for she couldna gang back to her mother without water ; sae she sat down by the side o' the walle, and fell a-greeting. A Paddo† then cam loup-loup-louping out o' the walle, and asked the lassie what she was greeting for ; and she said she was greeting because there was nae water in the walle.

  Cakes of oaten or barley meal, hardened on an iron plate over the fire, or on a heater in front.
    †   A frog.

" But," says the Paddo, " an ye'll be my wife, I'll gie ye plenty o' water." And the lassie, no thinking that the puir beast could mean ony thing serious, said she wad be his wife, for the sake o' getting the water. Sae she got the water into her dish, and gaed her wa's hame to her mother, and thought nae mair about the Paddo, till that night, when, just as she and her mother were about to gang to their beds, something came to the door, and, when they listened, they heard this sang—

" Oh, open the door, my hinnie, my heart,
   Oh, open the door, my ain true love ;
   Remember the promise that you and I made,
   Down i' the meadow, where we twa met."
Says the mother to the dochter, " What noise is that at the door ?" " Hout," says the dochter, " it's naething but a filthy Paddo." " Open the door," says the mother, " to the puir Paddo." Sae the lassie opened the door, and the Paddo cam loup-loup-louping in, and sat down by the ingle-side. Then he sings—
" Oh, gie me my supper, my hinnie, my heart,
  Oh, gie me my supper, my ain true love ;
  Remember the promise that you and I made,
  Down i' the meadow, where we twa met."
" Hout," quo' the dochter, " wad I gie a filthy Paddo his supper ?" "Oh, ay," said the mother, " e'en gie the puir Paddo his supper." Sae the Paddo got his supper ; and after that he sings again—
" Oh, put me to bed, my hinnie, my heart,
  Oh, put me to bed, my ain true love ;
  Remember the promise that you and I made,
  Down i' the meadow, where we twa met."
" Hout," quo' the dochter, " wad I put a filthy Paddo to bed?" "Oh, ay," says the mother, " put the puir Paddo to bed." And sae she put the Paddo to his bed. [Here we abridge a little.] Then the Paddo sang again—
" Now fetch me an aix, my hinnie, my heart,
   Now fetch me an aix, my ain true love ;
   Remember the promise that you and I made,
   Down i' the meadow, where we twa met."
The lassie wasna lang o' fetching the aix ; and then the Paddo sang—
" Now chap aff my head, my hinnie, my heart,
   Now chap aff my head, my ain true love ;
   Remember the promise that you and I made,
   Down i' the meadow, where we twa met."
Weel, the lassie chappit aff his head, and nae sooner was that done than he startit up the bonniest young prince that ever was seen. And the twa lived happy a' the rest o' their days.*

  The above tale is given from the recitation of an Annandale nurse of fifty years back.
      The tale of the Wolf of the Warldis End is mentioned in the Complaynt of Scotland, 1549. Dr Leyden adds the following note, from which it would appear that he had heard a various version of the above story, probably in his native county of Roxburgh :— " The romance, for the convenience of singing or narration, has probably been melted down by tradition into detached fragments, from which songs and nursery tales have been formed. I have heard fragments of songs repeated, in which the ' well of the warldis end' is mentioned, and denominated ' the well Absalom,' and ' the cald well sae weary.' According to the popular tale, a lady is sent by her stepmother to draw water from the well of the world's end. She arrives at the well, after encountering many dangers ; but soon perceives that her adventures have not reached a conclusion. A frog emerges from the well, and, before it suffers her to draw water, obliges her to betroth herself to the monster, under the penalty of being torn to pieces. The lady returns safe ; but at midnight the frog-lover appears at the door, and demands entrance, according to promise, to the great consternation of the lady and her nurse.
' Open the door, my hinnie, my heart,
  Open the door, mine ain wee thing ;
  And mind the words that you and I spak
  Down in the meadow, at the well-spring.'
The frog is admitted, and addresses her—
' Take me up on your knee, my dearie,
  Take me up on your knee, my dearie ;
  And mind the words that you and I spak
  At the cauld well sae weary.'
The frog is finally disenchanted, and appears as a prince, in his original form."

      There was ance a man that wrought in the fields, and had a wife, and a son, and a dochter. So, ae day he catched a hare, and took it hame to his wife, and   p.53 /   bade her make it ready for his dinner. Weel, ye see, the gudewife aye tasted and tasted at the hare when she was making it ready, till she had tasted it a' away, and she didna ken what to do for her gudeman's dinner. So she cried in Johny her son, to come and get his head kaimed ; and when she was kaiming his head, she slew him, and put him into the pat. Weel, ye see, the gudeman cam hame to his dinner, and his wife set down Johny weel boiled to him ; and when he was eating he takes up a fit [foot], and says, " That's surely my Johny's fit." " Sic nonsense ! it's ane o' the hare's," says the gudewife. Syne he took up a hand, and says, " That's surely my Johny's hand." " Ye're havering, gudeman ; it's anither o' the hare's feet." Sae, when the gudeman had eaten his dinner, little Katy, Johny's sister, gathered a' the banes, and put them in below a stane at the cheek o' the door—
Where they grew, and they grew,
To a milk-white doo,
That took its wings,
And away it flew.
And it flew till it cam to where twa women were washing claes, and it sat down on a stane, and cried—
" My mother slew me,
   My father chew me,
   My sister gathered my banes,
   And put them between twa milk-white stanes ;
   And I grew, and I grew,
   To a milk-white doo,
   And I took to my wings, and away I flew."
" Say that ower again, my bonnie bird, and we'll gie ye a' thir claes," says the woman.
" My mother slew me," &c.
And it got the claes ; and then flew till it cam to a man counting a great heap o' siller, and it sat down and cried—
" My mother slew me," &c.
" Say that again, my bonnie bird, and I'll gie ye a' this siller," says the man.
" My mother slew me," &c.
And it got a' the siller ; and syne it flew till it cam to twa millers grinding corn, and it cried—
" My mother slew me," &c.
" Say that again, my bonnie bird, and I'll gie ye this millstane," says the miller.
" My mother slew me," &c.
And it gat the millstane ; and syne it flew till it lighted on its father's house-top. It threw sma' stanes down the lum, and Katy came out to see what was the matter ; and the doo threw a' the claes to her. Syne the father cam out, and the doo threw a' the siller to him. And syne the mother cam out, and the doo threw down the millstane upon her and killed her. And at last it flew away, and the gudeman and his dochter after that
Lived happy and died happy,
And never drank out of a dry cappy.*

  Our Annandale authority—Nurse Jenny Blackadder—had a different version of the Milk-White Doo. It represented Kate as sitting under the table, and, "aye as the gudeman threw the banes to the cat, she catched them." The murdered infant grew into " a wee green bird :" it sang—
" Pippety pew,
   My mammy me slew ;
   My daddy me ate ;
   My sister Kate
   Gathered a' my banes,
   And laid them between twa milk-white stanes ;
   And a bird I grew,
   And awa' I flew,
   Singing pippety pew, pippety pew,"—Da capo.

" Whare hae ye been a' the day,
   My little wee croodlen doo ?"
" Oh, I've been at my grandmother's,
   Mak my bed, mammie, noo !"

" What gat ye at your grandmother's,
   My little wee croodlen doo ?"
" I gat a bonny wee fishie,
   Mak my bed, mammie, noo !"

" Oh, whare did she catch the fishie,
   My bonnie wee croodlen doo ?"
" She catch'd it in the gutter-hole,
   Mak my bed, mammie, noo !"

" And what did you do wi' the banes o't,
   My bonnie wee croodlen doo ?"
" I gied them to my little dog,
   Mak my bed, mammie, noo !"

" And what did the little doggie do,
   My little wee croodlen doo ?"
" He stretch'd out his head and his feet, and dee'd
   As I do, mammie, noo !"

      [The above is the nursery version of a beautiful ballad entitled " Lord Randal," which appeared in the Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border. In " Lord Randal," the hero is a handsome young huntsman, poisoned by his mistress. It is remarkable that the Germans have the same story in a ballad entitled " Grandmother Adder-cook."]

The cattie sits in the kiln-ring,
                  Spinning, spinning ;
And by cam a little wee mousie,
                  Rinning, rinning.

" Oh, what's that you're spinning, my loesome
                     Loesome lady ?"
" I'm spinning a sark to my young son,"
                     Said she, said she.

" Weel mot he brook it, my loesome,
                     Loesome lady."
" Gif he dinna brook it weel, he may brook it ill,"
                     Said she, said she.

" I soopit my house, my loesome,
                     Loesome lady."
" 'Twas a sign ye didna sit amang dirt then,"
                     Said she, said she.

" I fand twall pennies, my winsome,
                     Winsome lady."
" 'Twas a sign ye warna sillerless,"
                     Said she, said she.

" I gaed to the market, my loesome,
                     Loesome lady."
" 'Twas a sign ye didna sit at hame then,"
                     Said she, said she.

" I coft a sheepie's head, my winsome,
                     Winsome lady."
" 'Twas a sign ye warna kitchenless,"
                     Said she, said she.

" I put it in my pottie to boil, my loesome,
                     Loesome lady."
" 'Twas a sign ye didna eat it raw,"
                     Said she, said she.

" I put it in my winnock to cool, my winsome,
                     Winsome lady."
" 'Twas a sign ye didna burn your chafts then,"
                     Said she, said she.

p.54 /
" By cam a cattie, and ate it a' up, my loesome,
                     Loesome lady."
" And sae will I you—worrie, worrie—guash, guash,"
                     Said she, said she.*

  Dr Leyden, in his dissertation on the Complaynt of Scotland, alludes to a different version of this tale, substituting a frog for the cat. After the first verse, " the mouse proposes to join her (the frog) in spinning, and inquires,
' But where will I get a spindle, fair lady mine ?'
when the frog desires it to take
' The auld mill lewer,' or lever."

      [The gentleman who communicated the above added the following note :— " This is a tale to which I have often listened with delight. The old nurse's acting of the story was excellent. The transition of voice from the poor obsequious mouse to the surly cat, carried a moral with it ; and when the drama was finished by the cat devouring the mouse, the old nurse's imitation of the guash, guash (which she played off upon the youngest urchin lying in her lap) was electric ! Our childish pity for the poor mouse, our detestation of the cruel cat, and our admiration of our nurse, broke out in, with some, crying—with some, ' curses not loud but deep'—and, with others, in kisses and caresses lavished on the narrator."]

There lived a puddy in a well,
       Cuddy alone, cuddy alone ;
There lived a puddy in a well,
       Cuddy alone and I.
There was a puddy in a well,
And a mousie in a mill ;
       Kickmaleerie, cowden down,
       Cuddy alone and I.†

Puddy he'd a-wooin' ride,
Sword and pistol by his side.

Puddy cam to the mouse's wonne,
" Mistress Mouse, are you within ?"

" Yes, kind sir, I am within,
Saftly do I sit and spin."

" Madam, I am come to woo ;
Marriage I must have of you."

" Marriage I will grant you nane,
Till Uncle Rotten he comes hame."

Uncle Rotten's now come hame
Fye, gar busk the bride alang.

Lord Rotten sat at the head o' the table,
Because he was baith stout and able.

Wha is't that sits next the wa',
But Lady Mouse, baith jimp and sma ?

Wha is't that sits next the bride,
But the sola Puddy wi' his yellow side ? ‡

Syne cam the Dewk but and the Drake,
The Dewk took the Puddy, and gart him squaik.

Then cam in the carle Cat,
Wi' a fiddle on his back ;
" Want ye ony music here ?" §

The Puddy he swam down the brook,
The Drake he catch'd him in his fluke.

The Cat he pu'd Lord Rotten down,
The kittlins they did claw his crown.

But Lady Mouse, baith jimp and sma',
Crept into a hole beneath the wa' ;
" Squeak !" quo' she, " I'm weel awa'."

  In the ensuing stanzas, the unmeaning burden and repetitions are dismissed.
Var.—Wha sat at the table fit,
              Wha but Froggy and his lame fit ?
§ Var.—Than in cam the gude grey cat,
              Wi' a' the kittlins at her back.

       [Of the foregoing curious poem there are many versions in Scotland : the above is from the Ballad Book, a curious collection, of which thirty copies were printed in 1824. The story, homely and simple as it appears, is curious for its antiquity. In 1580, the Stationers' Company licensed " a ballad of a most strange wedding of the frogge and the mouse ;" and the following is another copy of the same production, copied from a small quarto manuscript of poems formerly in the possession of Sir Walter Scott, dated 1630 :—

Itt was ye frog in ye wall,
Humble doune, humble doune ;
And ye mirrie mouse in ye mill,
Tweidle, tweidle, twino.

Ye frog wald a-wowing ryd,
Sword and buckler by his syd.

Quhen he was upone his heich hors set,
His buttes they schone as blak as gett.

Quhen he came to ye mirrie mill pine,
" Lady Mouss, be yow thairin ?"

Then com out ye dustie mouss—
" I'm my lady of this house."

" Haist thou any mynd of me ?"
" I have no great mynd of thee."

" Quho sall this marrig mak ?"
" Our landlord, wich is ye ratt."

" Quhat sall we have to your supper ?"
" Three beanes and ane pound of butter."

Quhen ye supper thay war at,
The frog, mouse, and evin ye rat—

Then com in Gib our cat,
And chaught ye mouss evin by ye back.

Then did they all separat,
And ye frog lap on ye floor so flat.

Then in com Dick our drack,
And drew ye frog evin to ye lack.

Ye rat ran up ye wall.
A goodlie companie, ye devall goe with all.]

      There was ance a gentleman that lived in a very grand house, and he married a young lady that had been delicately brought up. In her husband's house she found every thing that was fine—fine tables and chairs, fine looking-glasses, and fine curtains ; but then her husband expected her to be able to spin twelve hanks o' thread every day, besides attending to her house ; and, to tell the even-down truth, the lady could not spin a bit. This made her husband glunchy with her, and, before a month had passed, she found hersel [lit.] very unhappy.
      One day the husband gaed away upon a journey, after telling her that he expected her, before his return, to have not only learned to spin, but to have spun a hundred hanks o' thread. Quite downcast, she took a walk along the hill side, till she cam to a big flat stane, and there she sat down and grat. By and by, she heard a strain o' fine sma' music, coming as it were frae aneath the stane, and, on turning it up, she saw a cave below, where there were sitting six wee ladies in green gowns, ilk ane o' them spinning on a little wheel, and singing,
" Little kens my dame at hame,
   That Whippety-Stourie is my name."
The lady walked into the cave, and was kindly asked by the wee bodies to take a chair and sit down, while they still continued their spinning. She observed that ilk ane's mouth was thrawn away to ae side, but she didna venture to speer the reason. They asked why she looked so unhappy, and she telt them that it was because she was expected by her husband to be a good spinner, when the plain truth was that she could not spin at all, and found herself quite unable for it, having been so delicately brought up ; neither was there any   p.55 /   need for it, as her husband was a rich man. " Oh, is that a' ?" said the little wifies, speaking out at their cheeks like.   [Imitate a person with a wry mouth.]
      " Yes, and is it not a very good a' too?" said the lady, her heart like to burst wi' distress.
      " We could easily quit ye o' that trouble," said the wee women. " Just ask us a' to dinner for the day when your husband is to come back. We'll then let you see how we'll manage him."
      So the lady asked them all to dine with herself and her husband, on the day when he was to come back.
      When the gudeman cam hame, he found the house so occupied with preparations for dinner, that he had nae time to ask his wife about her thread ; and, before ever he had ance spoken to her on the subject, the company was announced at the hall door. The six little ladies all came in a coach and six, and were as fine as princesses, but still wore their gowns of green. The gentleman was very polite and showed them up the stair with a pair of wax candles in his hand. And so they all sat down to dinner, and conversation went on very pleasantly, till at length the husband, becoming familiar with them, said, " Ladies, if it be not an uncivil quesion, I should like to know how it happens that all your mouths are turned away to one side ?"
      " Oh," said ilk ane at ance, " it's with our constant spin-spin-spinning.  [ Here speak with the mouth turned to one side, in imitation of the ladies.]
      " Is that the case?" cried the gentleman ; " then, John, Tam, and Dick, fye, go haste and burn every rock, and reel, and spinning-wheel, in the house, for I'll not have my wife to spoil her bonnie face with spin-spin-spinning."  [ Imitate again.]
      And so the lady lived happily with her gudeman all the rest of her days.

      [ Nurse Jenny speaks.]—" A' body kens there's fairies, but they're no sae common now as they war langsyne. I never saw ane mysel, but my mother saw them twice—ance they had nearly drooned her, whan she fell asleep by the water-side ; she wakened wi' them ruggin at her hair, an' saw something howd doon the water like a green bunch o' potato shaws." [ Memory has slipped the other story, which was not very interesting.]
      " My mother kent a wife that lived near Dunse, they ca'd her Tibbie Dickson : her gudeman was a gentleman's gairdner, and muckle frae hame. I dinna mind whether they ca'd him Tammas or Saundy—I guess Saundy—for his son's name, an' I kent him weel, was Saundy—and he"——
      Chorus of children.—" Oh, never fash about his name, Jenny."
      Nurse.—" Hoot, ye're aye in sic a haste—weel, Tibbie had a bairn, a lad bairn, just like ither bairns, and it thrave weel, for it sookit weel, and it, &c. &c. &c. [ Here a great many weels]. Noo, Tibbie gaes ae day to the well to fetch water, an' leaves the bairn in the house by itsel ; she couldna be lang awa', for she had but to gae by the midden, and the peat-stack, and through the kail-yaird, and there stude the well—I ken weel about that, for in that very well I aften weesh my, &c. &c. &c. [ Here another long digression.] Aweel, as Tibbie was comin back wi' her water, she hears a skirl in her house like the stickin of a gryce, or the singin of a soo ; fast she rins, and flees to the cradle, and there, I wat, she saw a sicht that made her heart scunner—in place o' her ain bonnie bairn, she fand a withered wolron, naething but skin an' bane, wi' hands like a moudiewort, and a face like a paddock, a mouth frae lug to lug, and twa great glow'rin een.
      Whan Tibbie saw sic a daft-like bairn, she scarce kent what to do, or whether it was her ain or no. Whiles she thocht it was a fairy, whiles that some ill een had sp'ilt her wean whan she was at the well ; it wad never sook, but suppit mair parritch in ae day than twa herd callants could do in a week. It was aye yammerin and greetin, but never mintet to speak a word ; an' whan ither bairns could rin, it couldna stand—sae Tibbie was sair fashed about it, as it lay in its cradle at the fire-side, like a half-dead hurcheon.
      Tibbie had span some yarn to mak a wab, and the wabster lived at Dunse, so she maun gae there ; but there was naebody to look after the bairn. Weel, her neist niebour was a tyler ; they ca'd him Wullie Grieve ; he had a humpit back, but he was a tap tyler for a' that—he cloutit a pair o' breeks for my father whan he was a boy, and my father telt me—— [ Here a long episode, very tiresome to the audience.]
      So Tibbie goes to the tyler, and says, ' Wullie, I maun awa' to Dunse about my wab ; an' I dinna ken what to do wi' the bairn till I come back ; ye ken it's but a whingin, screechin, skirlin wallidreg—but we maun bear wi' dispensations. I wad wuss ye,' quo' she, ' to tak tent till't till I come hame—ye sall hae a roosin ingle, an' a blast o' the gudeman's tobacco-pipe forbye.' Wullie was naething laith, an' back they gaed thegither.
      Wullie sits doon at the fire, an' awa' wi' her yarn gaes the wife ; but scarce had she steekit the door, an' wan half-way down the closs, whan the bairn cocks up on its doup in the cradle, and rounds in Wullie's lug, ' Wullie Tyler, an ye winna tell my mither whan she comes back, I'se play ye a bonnie spring on the bagpipes.'
      I wat, Wullie's heart was like to loup the hool— for tylers, ye ken, are aye timorsome—but he thinks to himsel, ' fair fashions are still best,' an' ' it's better to fleetch fules than to flyte wi' them;' so he rounds again in the bairn's lug, ' Play up, my doo, an' I'se tell naebody.' Wi' that, the fairy ripes amang the cradle strae, an' poos oot a pair o' pipes, sic as tyler Wullie ne'er had seen in a' his days—muntit wi' ivory, an' gold, an' silver, an' dymonts, an' what not. I dinna ken what spring the fairy played, but this I ken weel, that Wullie had nae great goo o' his performance ; so he sits thinkin' to himsel—' This maun be a deil's get ; an' I ken weel hoo to treat them; an' gin I while the time awa', Auld Waughorn himsel may come to rock his son's cradle, an' play me some foul prank ;' so he catches the bairn by the cuff o' the neck, and whupt him into the fire, bagpipes and a'!
      ' Fuff '—[ this pronounced with great emphasis, and a pause.]
      Awa' flees the fairy, skirling, ' Deil stick the lousie tyler ! ' a' the way up the lum."

  Little Bannock. In Ayrshire, a number of syllables in a and o are pronounced as if in u. In the present tale, the provincial speech of the aged narrator is faithfully preserved.

      [ The following story was transcribed for us by an elderly individual, who spent his early years in the parish of Symington, in Ayrshire. It was one of a great store of similar legends possessed by his grandmother, and which she related, upon occasion, for the gratification of himself and other youngsters, as she sat spinning by the fireside, with these youngsters clustered around her. This venerable person was born in the year 1704, and died in 1789.
      A conversation like the following usually preceded the tale :—
      " Grannie, grannie, come tell us the story o' the wee bunnock." " Hout, bairns, ye've heard it a hunner times afore. I needna tell it ower again." " Ah, but, grannie, it's sic a fine ane. Ye maun tell't. Just ance." " Weel, weel, bairns, if ye'll a' promise to be gude, I'll tell ye't again." ]
Some tell about their sweethearts, how they tirled them to the winnock,2
But I'll tell you a bonnie tale about a gude aitmeal bunnock.

  Tapped at the window to bring out their sweethearts.

p.56 /

      There lived an auld man and an auld wife at the side o' a burn. They had twa kye, five hens and a cock, a cat and twa kittlins. The auld man lookit after the kye, and the auld wife span on the tow rock. The kittlins aft grippit at the auld wife's spindle, as it tussled ower the hearth-stane. " Sho, sho," she wad say, " gae wa';" and so it tussled about.
      Ae day, after parritch-time,3  she thought she wad hae a bunnock. Sae she bakit twa aitmeal bunnocks, and set them to to [lit.] the fire to harden. After a while, the auld man cam in, and sat down aside the fire, and taks ane o' the bunnocks, an snappit it through the middle. When the tither ane sees this, it rins aff as fast as it could, and the auld wife after't, wi' the spindle in the tae hand and the tow rock in the tither. But the wee bunnock wan awa', and out o' sicht, and ran till it cam to a gude muckle thack house,4  and ben it ran5  boldly to the fireside ; and there were three tailors sitting on a muckle table. When they saw the wee bunnock come ben, they jumpit up, and gat in ahint the gudewife, that was cardin tow ayont the fire. " Hout," quo' she, " be na fleyt ;6  it's but a wee bunnock. Grip it, and I'll gie ye a soup milk till't." Up she gets wi' the tow-cards, and the tailor wi' the goose, and the twa prentices, the ane wi' the muckle shears and the tither wi' the lawbrod ; but it jinkit7  them, and ran roun' about the fire, and ane o' the prentices, thinking to snap it wi' the shears, fell i' the asepit. The tailor cuist the goose, and the gudewife the tow-cards ; but a' wadna do. The bunnock wan awa', and ran till it cam to a wee house at the roadside ; and in it rins, and there was a weaver sittin on the loom, and the wife winnin a clue o' yarn.

  After breakfast.
    4   Pretty large thatched house.
    5   Ran into the interior of the house. But and ben are the outer and inner apartments of a Scottish cottage.
    6   Do not be frightened.
    7   Eluded.—" But faith I'll turn a corner jinking,
                                And cheat ye yet."—B

      " Tibby," quo' he, " what's tat ?" " Oh," quo' she, " it's a wee bunnock." " It's weel come," quo' he, " for our sowens8  were but thin the day. Grip it, my woman, grip it." " Ay," quo' she; " what recks !  That's a clever bunnock. Kep,9  Willie ; kep, man."
      " Hout," quo' Willie, " cast the clue at it." But the bunnock whipit roun' about, and but the floor, and aff it gaed, and ower the knowe,10  like a new-tarred sheep, or a daft yell cow.11  And forrit it runs to the neist house, and ben to the fireside. And there was the gudewife kirnin. " Come awa', wee bunnock," quo' she ; " I'se hae ream12  and bread the day." But the wee bunnock whipit roun' about the kirn, and the wife after't, and i' the hurry she had near-hand coupit the kirn.13  And afore she got it set richt again, the wee bunnock was aff, and down the brae to the mill. And in it ran.

  A thin kind of pottage, made from the sediment of husks, and much used in Scotland till a recent period.
    9   Intercept.
    10   Knoll, or hillock.
    11   A cow which has ceased to yield milk.
    12   Cream.
    13   Overturned the churn.

      The miller was siftin meal i' the trough ; but, looking up, " Ay," quo' he, " it's a sign o' plenty when ye're rinnin about, and naebody to look after ye. But I like a bunnock and cheese. Come your wa's ben, and I'll gie ye a nicht's quarters." But the bunnock wadna trust itself wi' the miller and his cheese. Sae it turned and ran its wa's out ; but the millar didna fash his head14  wi't.
      So it toddled awa', and ran till it cam to the smithy. And in it rins, and up to the studdy.15  The smith was making horse-nails. Quo' he, " I like a bicker o' gude yill16  and a weel-toastit bunnock. Come your wa's in by here." But the bunnock was frightened when it heard about the yill ; and turned and aff as hard as it could, and the smith after't, and cuist the hammer. But it whirlt awa', and out o' sight in a crack,17  and ran till it cam to a farm-house, wi' a gude muckle peat-stack at the end o't. Ben it rins to the fire-side. The gudeman was clovin18  lint, and the gudewife hecklin. " Oh, Janet," quo' he, " there's a wee bunnock ; I'se hae the hauf o't." " Weel, John, I'se hae the tither hauf. Hit it ower the back wi' the clove." But the bunnock playt jink-about. " Hout, tout," quo' the wife, and gart the heckle flee at it. But it was ower clever for her.

  Trouble himself.
    15   Anvil.
    16   A stoup of good ale.
    17   Out of sight in a moment.
    18   Separating lint from the stalk by means of a certain iron implement.

      And aff and up the burn it ran, to the neist house, and whirlt its wa's ben to the fireside. The gudewife was stirrin the sowens, and the gudeman plettin spret-binnings19  for the kye. " Ho, Jock," quo' the gudewife, " come here. Thou's aye cryin' about a wee bunnock. Here's ane. Come in, haste ye, and I'll help thee to grip it." " Ay, mither, whaur is't ?" " See there. Rin ower o' that side." But the bunnock ran in ahint the gudeman's chair. Jock fell amang the sprets. The gudeman cuist a binning, and the gudewife the spurtle. But it was ower clever for Jock and her baith. It was aff and out o' sight in a crack, and through among the whins,20  and down the road to the neist house, and in, and ben to the fireside. The folk were just sittin down to their sowens, and the gudewife scartin the pat. " Losh," quo' she, " there's a wee bunnock come in to warm itself at our fireside." " Steek the door," quo' the gudeman, " And we'll try to get a grip o't." When the bunnock heard that, it ran but [lit.] the house, and they after't wi' their spunes, and the gudeman cuist his bunnat. But it whirlt awa', and ran, and better ran, till it cam to another house. And when it gaed ben, the folk were just gaun to their beds. The gudeman was castin aff his breeks, and the gudewife rakin the fire. " What's tat ?" quo' he. " Oh," quo' she, "it's a wee bunnock." Quo' he, " I could eat the hauf o't, for a' the brose I hae suppit." " Grip it," quo' the wife, " and I'll hae a bit too." " Cast your breeks at it—kep—kep !" The gudeman cuist the breeks, and had near hand smoor't it. But it warsl't out, and ran, and the gudeman after't, wantin the breeks. And there was a clean chase ower the craft park, and up the wunyerd, and in amang the whins. And the gudeman lost it, and had to come his wa's trottin' hame hauf nakit. But now it was grown dark, and the wee bunnock couldna see ; but it gaed into the side o' a muckle whin bush, and into a tod's hole.21  The tod had gotten nae meat for twa days. " Oh, welcome, welcome," quo' the tod, and snappit it in twa i' the middle. And that was the end o' the wee bunnock.

Now be ye lords or commoners,
    Ye needna laugh nor sneer,
For ye'll be a' i' the tod's hole,
    In less than a hunner year.
[ At the conclusion, Grannie would look round upon her little audience, and add the following, by way of moral :—
      " Now, weans, an ye live to grow muckle, be na ower lifted up about ony thing, nor ower sair cuisten down ; for ye see the folk were a' cheated, and the puir tod got the bunnock."]

  Plaiting straw ropes for the cattle.
    20   Furze.
    21   A fox's hole.

      There were ance twa widows that lived ilk ane on a small bit o' ground, which they rented from a farmer. Ane of them had twa sons, and the other had ane ; and by and by it was time for the wife that had twa sons to send them away to spouss their fortune. So she told her eldest son ae day, to tak a can and bring her water from the well, that she might bake a cake for him ; and, however much or however little water he might bring, the cake would be great or   p.57 /   sma' accordingly ; and that cake was to be a' that she could gie him when he went on his travels.
      The lad gaed away wi' the can to the well, and filled it wi' water, and then came away hame again ; but the can being broken, the maist part o' the water had run out before he got back. So his cake was very sma' ; yet, sma' as it was, his mother asked if he was willing to take the half of it with her blessing, telling him that, if he chose rather to have the hale, he would only get it wi' her curse. The young man, thinking he might hae to travel a far way, and not knowing when or how he might get other provisions, said he would like to hae the hale cake, come of his mother's malison what like ; so she gave him the hale cake, and her malison alang wi't. Then he took his brither aside, and gave him a knife to keep till he should come back, desiring him to look at it every morning, and as lang as it continued to be clear, then he might be sure that the owner of it was well ; but if it grew dim and rusty, then for certain some ill had befallen him.
      So the young man set out to spouss his fortune. And he gaed a' that day, and a' the next day ; and on the third day, in the afternoon, he came up to where a shepherd was sitting with a flock o' sheep. And he gaed up to the shepherd, and asked him wha the sheep belanged to ; and the man answered—
" The Red-Etin of Ireland
       Ance lived in Bellygan,
   And stole King Malcolm's daughter,
       The King of fair Scotland.
   He beats her, he binds her,
       He lays her on a band ;
   And every day he dings her
       With a bright silver wand.
   Like Julian the Roman,
   He's one that fears no man.

   It's said there's ane predestinate
       To be his mortal foe ;
   But that man is yet unborn,
       And lang may it be so."

The young man then went on his journey ; and he had not gone far when he espied an old man with white locks herding a flock of swine ; and he gaed up to him, and asked whose swine these were, when the man answered—
" The Red-Etin of Ireland"—          
[Repeat the above verses.]
Then the young man gaed on a bit farther, and cam to another very old man herding goats ; and when he asked whose goats they were, the answer was—
" The Red-Etin of Ireland"—          
[Repeat the verses again.]
This old man also told him to beware o' the next beasts that he should meet, for they were of a very different kind from any he had yet seen.
      So the young man went on, and, by and by, he saw a multitude of very dreadfu' beasts, ilk ane o' them wi' twa heads, and on every head four horns. And he was sore frightened, and ran away from them as fast as he could ; and glad was he when he cam to a castle that stood on a hillock, wi' the door standing wide to the wa'. And he gaed into the castle for shelter, and there he saw an auld wife sitting beside the kitchen fire. He asked the wife if he might stay there for the night, as he was tired wi' a lang journey ; and the wife said he might, but it was not a good place for him to be in, as it belanged to the Red-Etin, who was a very terrible beast, wi' three heads, that spared no living man he could get hold of. The young man would have gone away, but he was afraid of the beasts on the outside o' the castle ; so he beseeched the auld woman to conceal him as well as she could, and not tell the Etin that he was there. He thought, if he could put over the night, he might get away in the morning, without meeting wi' the beasts, and so escape. But he had not been lang in his hidy-hole, before the awful Etin came in ; and nae sooner was he in than he was heard crying—
" Snouk butt, and snouk ben,
   I find the smell of an earthly man ;
   Be he living, or be he dead,
   His heart this night shall kitchen my bread."
The monster soon found the poor young man, and pulled him from his hole. And when he had got him out, he told him that, if he could answer him three questions, his life should be spared. The first was, Whether Ireland or Scotland was first inhabited ? The second was, Whether man was made for woman, or woman for man ? The third was, Whether men or brutes were made first ? The lad not being able to answer one of these questions, the Red-Etin took a mell and knocked him on the head, and turned him into a pillar of stone.
      On the morning after this happened, the younger brither took out the knife to look at it, and he was grieved to find it a' brown wi' rust. He told his mother that the time was now come for him to go away upon his travels also ; so she requested him to take the can to the well for water, that she might bake a cake for him. The can being broken, he brought hame as little water as the other had done, and the cake was as little. She asked whether he would have the hale cake wi' her malison, or the half wi' her blessing ; and, like his brither, he thought it best to have the hale cake, come o' the malison what might. So he gaed away ; and he cam to the shepherd that sat wi' his flock o' sheep, and asked him whose sheep these were.  [ Repeat the whole of the above series of incidents.]
      The other widow and her son heard of a' that had happened frae a fairy, and the young man determined that he would also go upon his travels, and see if he could do any thing to relieve his twa friends. So his mother gave him a can to go to the well and bring home water, that she might bake him a cake for his journey. And he gaed, and as he was bringing hame the water, a raven ower aboon his head cried to him to look, and he would see that the water was running out. And he was a young man of sense, and, seeing the water running out, he took some clay, and patched up the holes, so that he brought home enough of water to bake a large cake. When his mother put it to him to take the half cake wi' her blessing, he took it in preference to having the hale wi' her malison ; and yet the half was bigger than what the other lads had got a' thegither.
      So he gaed away on his journey ; and, after he had travelled a far way, he met wi' an auld woman, that asked him if he would give her a bit of his bannock. And he said he would gladly do that, and so he gave her a piece of the bannock ; and for that she gied him a magical wand, that she said might yet be of service to him, if he took care to use it rightly. Then the auld woman, wha was a fairy, told him a great deal that would happen to him, and what he ought to do in a' circumstances ; and after that she vanished in an instant out o' his sight. He gaed on a great way farther, and then he came up to the old man herding the sheep ; and when he asked whose sheep these were, the answer was—
" The Red-Etin of Ireland
       Ance lived in Bellygan,
   And stole King Malcolm's daughter
       The King of fair Scotland.
   He beats her, he binds her,
       He lays her on a band ;
   And every day he dings her
       With a bright silver wand.
   Like Julian the Roman,
   He's one that fears no man.
p.58 /
   But now I fear his end is near,
       And destiny at hand ;
   And you're to be, I plainly see,
       The heir of all his land."

[ Repeat the same inquiries to the man attending the swine and the man attending the goats, with the same answer in each case.]

      When he came to the place where the monstrous beasts were standing, he did not stop nor run away, but went boldly through amongst them. One came up roaring with open mouth to devour him, when he struck it with his wand, and laid it in an instant dead at his feet. He soon came to the Etin's castle, where he knocked, and was admitted. The auld woman that sat by the fire warned him of the terrible Etin, and what had been the fate of the twa brithers ; but he was not to be daunted. The monster soon came in, saying—

" Snouk butt, and snouk ben,
   I find the smell of an earthly man ;
   Be he living or be he dead,
   His heart shall be kitchen to my bread."
He quickly espied the young man, and bade him come forth on the floor. And then he put the three questions to him; but the young man had been told every thing by the good fairy, so he was able to answer all the questions. When the Etin found this, he knew that his power was gone. The young man then took up an axe, and hewed off the monster's three heads. He next asked the old woman to show him where the king's daughter lay ; and the old woman took him up stairs, and opened a great many doors, and out of every door came a beautiful lady who had been imprisoned there by the Etin ; and ane o' the ladies was the king's daughter. She also took him down into a low room, and there stood two stone pillars that he had only to touch wi' his wand, when his twa friends and neighbours started into life. And the hale o' the prisoners were overjoyed at their deliverance, which they all acknowledged to be owing to the prudent young man. Next day they a' set out for the king's court, and a gallant company they made. And the king married his daughter to the young man that had delivered her, and gave a noble's daughter to ilk ane o' the other young men ; and so they a' lived happily a' the rest o' their days.
      [ The above story is from Mr Buchan's curious manuscript collection. As already mentioned, the tale of the Red-Etin is one of those enumerated in the Complaynt of Scotland, a work written about 1549. It is also worthy of remark that Lyndsay, in his Dreme, speaks of having amused the infancy of King James V. with " tales of the Red-Etin and Gyre-Carlin."
      Leyden supposes, with, we suspect, little probability, that the tale of the Red-Etin had some connexion with one of the characters of a nursery story, of which he only records a few rhymes :—
The mouse, the louse, and Little Rede,
Were a' to mak a gruel in a lead.
The two first associates desire Little Rede to go to the door to " see what he could see." He declares that he saw the Gyre-Carlin coming,
With a spade, and shool, and trowel,
To lick up a' the gruel.
Upon which the party disperse—
The louse to the claith,
    And the mouse to the wa',
Little Rede behind the door,
    And licket up a'.
The story of which we thus obtain a hint is manifestly different from the Red-Etin, as now recovered. Supposing the above to be a genuine copy, we must conclude that the tale which charmed the young ears of King James was a little different in character from the fairy tales prevalent in our own times.]

      Ye see, there was a wife had a son, and they ca'd him Jock ; and she said to him, " You are a lazy fallow ; ye maun gang awa' and do something for to help me." " Weel," says Jock, " I'll do that." So awa' he gangs, and fa's in wi' a packman. Says the packman, " If you carry my pack a' day, I'll gie you a needle at night." So he carried the pack, and got the needle ; and as he was gaun awa' hame to his mither, he cuts a burden o' brakens, and put the needle into the heart o' them. Awa' he gaes hame. Says his mither, " What hae ye made o' yoursel the day ?" Says Jock, " I fell in wi' a packman, and carried his pack a' day, and he gae me a needle for't ; and ye may look for it amang the brakens." "Hout," quo' she, " ye daft gowk, you should hae stuck it into your bonnet, man." "I'll mind that again," quo' Jock.
      Next day, he fell in wi' a man carrying plough socks. " If ye help me to carry my socks a' day, I'll gie ye ane to yersel at night." " I'll do that," quo' Jock. Jock carries them a' day, and gets a sock, which he sticks in his bonnet. On the way hame, Jock was dry, and gaed away to tak a drink out o' the burn ; and wi' the weight o' the sock, it fell into the river, and gaed out o' sight. He gaed hame, and his mither says, " Weel, Jock, what hae you been doing a' day ?" And then he tells her. " Hout," quo' she, " ye should hae tied a string to it, and trailed it behind you." " Weel," quo' Jock, " I'll mind that again."
      Awa' he sets, and he fa's in wi' a flesher. " Weel," says the flesher, " if ye'll be my servant a' day, I'll gie ye a leg o' mutton at night." " I'll be that," quo' Jock. He gets a leg o' mutton at night ; he ties a string to it, and trails it behind him the hale road hame. " What hae ye been doing ?" said his mither. He tells her. " Hout, you fool, ye should hae carried it on your shouther." " I'll mind that again," quo' Jock.
      Awa' he goes next day, and meets a horse-dealer. He says, " If you will help me wi' my horses a' day, I'll gie you ane to yersel at night." " I'll do that," quo' Jock. So he served him, and got his horse, and he ties its feet ; but as he was not able to carry it on his back, he left it lying on the roadside. Hame he comes, and tells his mither. " Hout, ye daft gowk, ye'll ne'er turn wise ! Could ye no hae loupen on it, and ridden it?" " I'll mind that again," quo' Jock.
      Aweel, there was a grand gentleman, wha had a daughter wha was very subject to melancholy ; and her father gae out that whaever should make her laugh would get her in marriage. So it happened that she was sitting at the window ae day, musing in her melancholy state, when Jock, according to the advice o' his mither, cam flying up on the cow's back, wi' the tail ower his shouther. And she burst out into a fit o' laughter. When they made inquiry wha made her laugh, it was found to be Jock riding on the cow. Accordingly, Jock is sent for to get his bride. Weel, Jock is married to her, and there was a great supper prepared. Amongst the rest o' the things, there was some honey, which Jock was very fond o'. After supper, they were bedded, and the auld priest that married them sat up a' night by the fireside. So Jock waukens in the night-time, and says, " Oh, wad ye gie me some o' yon nice sweet honey that we got to our supper last night ?" " Oh, ay," says his wife, " rise and gang into the press, and ye'll get a pig fou o't." Jock rises, and thrusts his hand into the honey pig for a nievefu' o't ; and he could not get it out. So he cam awa' wi' the pig on his hand, like a mason's mell, and says, " Oh, I canna get my hand out." " Hout," quo' she, " gang awa' and break it on the   p.59 /   cheek-stane." By this time, the fire was dark, and the auld priest was lying snoring wi' his head against the chimney-piece, wi' a huge white wig on. Jock gaes awa', and gae him a whack wi' the honey pig on the head, thinking it was the cheek-stane, and knocks it a' in bits. The auld priest roars out, " Murder !" Jock taks doun the stair, as hard as he can bicker, and hides himsel amang the bees' skeps.
      That night, as luck wad have it, some thieves cam to steal the bees' skeps, and in the hurry o' tumbling them into a large grey plaid, they tumbled Jock in alang wi' them. So aff they set, wi' Jock and the skeps on their backs. On the way, they had to cross the burn where Jock lost his bannet. Ane o' the thieves cries, " Oh, I hae fand a bannet !" and Jock, on hearing that, cries out, " Oh, that's mine !" They thocht they had got the deil on their backs. So they let a' fa' in the burn ; and Jock, being tied in the plaid, couldna get out ; so he and the bees were a' drowned thegither.
      If a' tales be true, that's nae lee.*

  From a manuscript of the late Mr Andrew Henderson, editor of a collection of Scottish Proverbs.

squiggly rulesquiggly rule


HE present section is composed of the rhymes prevalent amongst young boys, and most of which are appropriate to the little affairs of that section of the community.
King, King Capper
Fill my happer,
And I'll gie you cheese and bread
When I come ower the water.
—Said, with shut eyes and an open palm, in solicitation of a part of any good thing which another boy may have.

Gie a thing, tak a thing,
Auld man's gowd ring ;
Lie butt, lie ben,
Lie amang the dead men.
—Said in reproach of a companion who takes back, or asks back, a thing formerly given.

Ane's nane,
    Twa's some,
Three's a pickle,
    Four's a curn, †
Five's a horse-lade,
    Six 'll gar his back bow,
Seven 'll vex his breath,
    Aught 'll bear him to the grund,
And nine 'll be his death.
—Said when anxious to get more of some delicacy, such as comfits, which a companion may chance to have.

  Curn—one of several words in Scotland to express a small quantity. Pickle is another. It happened, strangely enough, that one of the managers of the Opera-house in London was the son of a respectable but plain man who resided in Aberdeen. This old person regarded his son's exaltation in no pleasant light ; and on some one asking him one day what the young man was now about, he gave for answer, " He keeps a curn o' queynies, and a wheen widdy-fu's, and gars them fussle, and loup, and mak murgeons, to please the grit folk !" That is, in English, " He keeps a number of indifferent women, and a few blackguard men, and makes them play on instruments, and dance, and make grimaces, to please the great people."

Black dog, white dog, what shall I ca' thee ?
Keek i' the kail-pat, and glowr i' the awmrie !
—Said to boys caught helping themselves at the cupboard.

      Said on catching a cat in the same circumstances :

Jean, Jean, Jean,
The cat's at the ream,
Suppin wi' her fore-feet,
And glowrin wi' her een !

      An address to the hiccup :
Hickup, hickup, gang away,
Come again another day ;
Hickup, hickup, when I bake,
I'll gie you a butter cake !

      Said to people yawning :
Them that gant,
Something want—
Sleep, meat, or makin o'.

    A rhyme on numbers, said very fast :
Seventeen, sixteen, fifteen,
Fourteen, thirteen, twelve,
Eleven, ten, mine,
Eight, seven, six,
Five, four, three,
The tenor o' the tune plays merrilie.

      A jocular vituperation of boys named David :
Davie Doytes, the Laird o' Loytes,
    Fell ower the mortar stane ;
A' the lave got butter and bread,
    But Davie Doytes got nane.

In Cockelby's Sow, a strange rude Scottish poem of the end of the fourteenth or beginning of the fifteenth century, " Davie Doytes" is alluded to as a minstrel:
" Besyde, thair capitane, I trow,
   Callit wes Colyne Cuckow ;
   And Davie Doyte of the dale
   Was thair mad menstral
   He blew on a pype he
   Maid of the borit bourtre."
Thus to trace a piece of childish nonsense through a long succession of centuries, is very curious.

     A similarly curious instance of far-descended nonsense is to be found in another puerile rhyme :

Matthew, Mark, Luke, John,
Haud the horse till I loup on ;
Haud it fast and haud it sure,
Till I get ower the misty muir.
Boys in Scotland say this in the course of their rollicking sports. The invocation is probably borrowed from an old religious custom. Ady, in his Candle in the Dark, 4to, 1655, tells of an old woman he knew in Essex, who had lived in Queen Mary's time, and thence learned many Popish charms, one of which was this : every night when she lay down to sleep, she charmed her bed, saying—
Matthew, Mark, Luke, John,
The bed be blest that I lie on !
And this she would repeat three times, reposing great confidence therein, because (she said) she had been taught it, when she was a young maid, by the churchmen of those times.
Buckalee, buckalo, buckabonnie bellie-horn !
Sae bonnie and sae brawly as the cowie cowes the corn !
—Cried at the top of the voice to inattentive herdboys, when they allow their charge to stray from their pastures. Ritson gives the corresponding English rhyme :—
Little boy, little boy, blow your horn,
The sheep 's in the meadow, the cow 's in the corn !
What ! this is the way you mind your sheep,
Under the haycock fast asleep !
p.60 /
Truan, truan, trottibus,
Leaves the school at Martinmas,
Comes again at Whitsunday,
Whan a' the lave get the play.
—Cried in vituperation of boys who play the truant from school.

I'll tell ye a tale of Tammie Fail—
    Ae Monanday at morn,
He tethered his tyke ayont the dyke,
    And bad him weir the corn ;
The dyke shot, and the tyke lap,
    And the sheep ran a' i' the corn.

    In the principal country towns in Scotland, it is customary for the boys to parade the streets at night in bands, bawling, at the full extent of their voices, various rhymes of little meaning, such as—
The mune shines bricht,
And the stars gie a licht,
We'll see to kiss a bonnie lass
At ten o'clock at night !

Lazy deuks, that sit i' the coal-neuks,
And winna come out to play ;
Leave your supper, and leave your sleep,
Come out and play at hide-and-seek.

Rabbit wi' the red neck, red neck, red neck,
    Rabbit wi' the red neck, follow ye the drum :
Fire on the mountains, the mountains, the mountains,
    Fire on the mountains, run, boys, run.
—The last is cried by these juvenile bands, when, at a particular season, they observe the conflagration of the heath, which takes place annually on many mountains in Scotland.

      A street cry of the Edinburgh boys:

Will ye buy syboes ?
    Will ye buy leeks ?
Will ye buy my bonnie lassie
    Wi' the red cheeks ?

I winna buy your syboes,
    I winna buy your leeks,
But I will buy your bonnie lassie
    Wi' the red cheeks !

Hey, cockie dawdie, hey, cockie dow,
Are ye ony better since you got your row ? *

  Roll, or lunch.

This was very frequently heard during the time of the last war. Cocky is a term for a recruit (Fr. coquet ), and perhaps the cry was first addressed to the young men composing the volunteer regiments which took their rise in Edinburgh at the conclusion of the last century. The couplet was subjected to frequent variations, as, for instance, when the present Emperor Nicholas of Russia visited the city in 1818—
Hey, cockie dawdie, hey, cockie dow,
Did ye see the Grand-Duke running down the Bow ?
This nonsense caught the fancy of the late Nathaniel Gow, who actually composed " The Grand-Duke's welcome to Edinburgh" on the basis of the air to which the boys sung the verse.

Haly on a cabbage-stock, haly on a bean,
Haly on a cabbage-stock, the morn 's Halloween !
Hey-how for Halloween,
When a' the witches to be seen ;
Some black and some green,
Hey-how for Halloween !
The above are cries of the Edinburgh boys in anticipation of one of the most endeared festivals of their year, the various ceremonies of which are so well described by Burns. The following passage, in a burlesque poem of the sixteenth century, Montgomery's Flyting against Polwart, jingles strangely in harmony with these distichs of the youth of our ancient city :—
" In the hinder end of harvest, on All-halloween,
       When our good neighbours does ride, if I read right,
   Some buckled on a bunwand, and some on a bean,
       Aye trottand in troups from the twilight."

The Gunpowder plot,
Will never be forgot,
While Edinburgh Castle stands upon a rock.
—A cry of the Edinburgh boys, probably bearing some reference to the firing of the castle guns customary on the 5th of November.

      The following seem to be puerile burlesques of a custom once prevalent in all Scottish towns. Upon the death of any person, the bedral, or the town-cryer, was sent with his bell, or wooden platter beat by a stick or spoon, through the chief streets, to announce the event, which (at Peebles) he did sixty years ago in the following words :—" All brethren and sisters, I let ye to wut, that a brother (or sister) has depairtit at the pleasure of the Almighty God—called [ John Thamson ] : A' friends and brethren are invited to the burial on Tyesday neist, at twa o'clock."

Lingle, lingle, lang tang,
    Our cat's dead !
What did she dee wi' ?
    Wi' a sair head !

A' you that kent her,
    When she was alive,
Come to her burial
    Atween four and five !

An Annandale version gives the other sex, and assigns a much more dignified and deadly disease than headache, namely, the gout :
Oyez !  oyez !
    I let ye to wut,
That our cat Gilbert's
    Dead o' the gut ! &c.
    The following verse is familiar to the boys in every province of Scotland :
When I was a little boy, strikin at the studdy,
I had a pair o' blue breeks, and oh, but they were duddie !
As I strook they shook, like a lammie's tailie ;
But now I'm grown a gentleman, my wife she wears a railie ! *

  That is, a night-rail.—" You tie your apron about your neck, that you may say you have been kissed in a night-rail."—Ward's London Spy. Mistress Sarah Stout, the Quakeress, wore a night-rail when drowned.—See State Trials.

It is said that it bears reference to the first Callander of Craigforth, near Stirling, who was originally a poor blacksmith, but rose in his profession, and ultimately acquired a large fortune in an extraordinary way. James VI., when residing in Stirling Castle, having run in his debt, he followed him to London to crave payment ; and the charge being in Scots money, it was paid in sterling by mistake, that is to say, it was paid twelve times over. The verse is said to have been inscribed on the back of a picture of the fortunate man at Craigforth House.

      A rhyme upon the royal coat-armorial :

The lion and the unicorn,
    Fightin for the croon ;
Off cam the littel dog,
    And knocked them baith doon !

Some gat white bread,
    And some gat brown ;
But the lion beat the unicorn
    Round about the toon.

The little dog must be the lion sejant placed on the top of the crown in the crest.

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      The following are exercises in rapid pronunciation. The object is to say the whole of one of these sentences without drawing breath—no easy matter, as any one will find who tries—and as often as possible, without faltering or blundering :

The rattan lap up the rannle-tree,
Loup, rattan, loup!

A shoemaker cam to our town,
Wi' fine cut pumps, and pumps cut fine.

I wad gie my ten owsen that my wife was as fair as yon swan
That is fleeing ower yon mill-dam.
It is necessary in the above case to add co to each syllable.

Climb Criffel, clever cripple.

I sewed a pair o' sheets, and I slate them ;
A pair o' weel-sewed sheets slate I.

The clerk o' Ruglen's lum reeks briskly.

      A jocular imitation of toasting—to be pronounced very rapidly :
Here's to you and yours,
No forgetting us and ours ;
And when you and yours
Come to see us and ours,
Us and ours,
Will be as kind to you and yours,
As ever you and yours
Were to us and ours,
When us and ours
Cam to see you and yours.

      A jocular imitation of ordinary salutations :
" Cousin, cousin, how do you do ?"
" Pretty well, I thank you ; how does Cousin Sue do ?"
" She is very well, and sends her service to you,
And so do Dick and Tom, and all who ever knew you."

squiggly rulesquiggly rule


AID by boys, when enjoying the amusement of riding upon each other's backs :
Cripple Dick upon a stick,
    Sandy on a sow,
Ride away to Galloway,
    To buy a pund o' woo.
      Sung to their hobbie-horses or to walking-canes exalted to an equestrian capacity :
I had a little hobbie-horse,
    His mane was dapple-grey,
His head was made o' pease-strae,
    His tail was made o' hay.
    A boy standing upon a hillock or other eminence, from which he defies the efforts of his companions to dislodge him, exclaims, by way of challenge:
I, Willie Wastle,
Stand on my castle ;
And a' the dogs o' your toon
Will no drive Willie Wastle doun.
When Oliver Cromwell lay at Haddington, he sent to require the governor of Home Castle, in Berwickshire, to surrender. There is an unvarying tradition that the governor replied in the above quatrain of juvenile celebrity, but was soon compelled to change his tune by the victor of Dunbar. " 1651, Feb. 13. One Jhone Cockburne, being governor of the castle of Hume, after that a breach was made in the wall, did yield the same to Cromuell and his forces."—Lamont's Diary.

Stottie ba', hinnie ba', tell to me,
How mony bairns am I to hae ?
Ane to leeve, and ane to dee,
And ane to sit on the nurse's knee !
—Addressed to a hand-ball by girls, who suppose that they will have as many children as the times they succeed in catching it.

      In the days of villeinage, when a free man gave up his liberty, put himself under the protection of a master, and became his man, he took hold of his own fore-top, and so handed himself over to his future lord. This very significant formula is still preserved among children, one of whom takes hold of the fore-top of another, and says:

Tappie, tappie tousie, will ye be my man ?
If the answer is "no," the first speaker pushes back the recusant against the hair, saying contemptuously :
Gae fae me, gae fae me, gae fae me !
If he says "ay," he pulls the slave towards him, and says :
Come to me, come to me, come to me !
     A boy folds in the fingers of one hand, so as to leave a space, which is denominated the corbie's hole. He disposes one or two of the sharpest-nailed fingers of the other, in such a way as to close hard in upon any thing which might come into the hole, and invites the fingers of his companions into the trap prepared for them, in the following words :
Put your finger in the corbie's hole,
    The corbie's no at hame ;
The corbie's at the back-door,
    Pykin at a bane.
A most treacherous instance, however, of the sinful lie of " Not at Home ! " —for the instant that a single finger enters the hole, the nails which lie in wait for its reception spring upon it and give it a hearty pinching.

      Some small article, as a marble, a comfit, or other trifle, is put into one hand secretly. The urchin then comes up to a companion with both hands closed, and cries, as he revolves the two fists (nieves) before his friend's eyes—

Nievie, nievie, nick-nack,
Which hand will ye tak ?
Tak the right, tak the wrang,
I'll beguile ye if I can.
The fun is in the challenged person choosing the hand in which there is nothing.
      " ' Na, na, answered the boy ; he is a queer auld cull ; he disna frequent wi' other folk, but lives up by at the Cleikum. He gave me half a crown yince, and forbade me to play it awa' at pitch and toss.'
      ' And you disobeyed him of course ? '
      ' Na, I didna disobeyed him—I played it awa' at nievie-nievie nick-nack.' "—St Ronan's Well.

      Half a dozen urchins, collected by the fireside, of a winter's evening, would amuse themselves by such rhymes as the following :—

Braw news is come to town,
    Braw news is carried;
Braw news is come to town,
    [ Jenny Foster's ] * married.

First she gat the frying-pan,
    Syne she gat the ladle ;
Syne she gat the young man
    Dancing on the table.

  Naming some girl of the party.

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Or the following:

Braw news is come to town,
    Braw news is carried ;
Braw news is come to town,
    [Sandy Dickson's] * married.

First he gat the kail pat,
    Syne he gat the ladle ;
Syne he gat [a dainty wean,]
    And syne he gat [a] cradle.

  Naming some boy of the party.

Thus to anticipate what is incidental to mature life, is of course sure to cover the young with blushes, and hence the wit of the entertainment. There is another rhyme adapted for similar occasions, and intended to convey an insinuation against the presumedly prettiest young maiden of the party, usually called " the Flower" of her place of residence :—
I ken something that I'll no tell,
A' the lasses o' our town are cruppen in a shell,
Except the Flower o' [Hamilton], and she's cruppen out,
[And a little wee bairn, wi' a dish-clout.]
Some ca't the kittlin, and some ca't the cat,
And some ca't the little boy wi' the straw hat.
The boy gaed to her daddie, to seek a wee piece,
But he took up the airn tangs and hit it i' the teeth ;
It roared and it grat—gang down to the corse,
And see the Flower o' [Hamilton] riding on a horse.
The above is a Lanarkshire, and the following a Berwickshire version :—
I've found something that I'll no tell,
A' the lads o' our town cocklin in a shell,
A' but [Willie Johnston],† and he's cruppen out,
And he will have [Susie Kerr]† without ony doubt ;
He kissed and clappit her, he's pared a' her nails,
He made her a gown o' peacock tails :
Baith coal and candle ready to burn,
And they're to be married the morn's afternoon.
  The spaces within brackets to be supplied with the name of some youngster against whom it is wished to direct the jest.
Redcapie-dossie, come out an ye daur,
Lift the sneck, and draw the bar !
This is cried by boys in at the door or windows of deserted buildings, particularly old castles and churches of terrible character. It is considered a feat of some daring, though the individual who performs it usually runs away as fast as he can, immediately on having uttered the invocation. The rhyme is founded upon a very ancient superstition, which peoples every such building with a presiding spirit called Redcap. In Leyden's ballad of " Lord Soulis" (Minst. Scot. Bord. iii.), Redcap is represented as the familiar of that feudal tyrant ; but this must have arisen from the accredited circumstance of the ruins of Hermitage Castle being believed to be still under the protection of such a spirit.
      The boys of Edinburgh have parodied the rhyme, by substituting the name of Sir George Mackenzie for that of Redcap, and applying it to his tomb or mausoleum, in the Greyfriar's Churchyard, which is invested with a character scarcely less dreadful than that of the ruined buildings above mentioned. The Edinburgh version therefore runs thus :—
Bluidie Mackingie, come out if ye daur,
Lift the sneck, and draw the bar.
Sir George, who, it will be recollected, was King's Advocate or public prosecutor in the dismal reigns of Charles II. and James II., and, accordingly, had the odious duty of bringing to trial many of the Covenanters, was buried here, anno 1691 ; and the rhyme may be considered as testifying, in a very striking manner, the popular odium and fear which his conduct excited among our fathers.

      In most of the Scottish puerile games, there is one person upon whom the chief part of the duty devolves, while the rest have little else to do than look after their amusement. In some games this individual has some power, or acts as a master over the rest ; but, in general, the distinguished part which he bears in the sport is not the most agreeable, and he is chosen by lot, or, as the boys express it, by chappin out, i. e. ranging the whole assemblage into a row, and going over them one by one with the finger, repeating to each individual a syllable of some unmeaning rhyme, and upon whomsoever the last falls, he is what is called it. The following may serve as specimens of a very numerous class of rhymes for chappin out :—

My grandfather's man and me coost out,
How will we bring the matter about ?
We'll bring it about as weel as we can,
And a' for the sake o' my grandfather's man.

Lemons and oranges, two for a penny,
I'm a good scholar that counts so many ;
The rose is red, the leaves are green,
The days are past that I have seen !
Jenny, good spinner,
Come down to your dinner,
And taste the leg of a roasted frog !
I pray ye, good people,
Look ower the kirk-steeple,
And see the cat play wi' the dog !
I doot, I doot,
My fire is out,
And my little dog's not at home ;
I'll saddle my cat, and I'll bridle my dog,
And send my little boy home,
    Home, home again, home !

The last "home" determines the wight upon whom the lot falls ; and a postscript is added—
A ha'penny puddin, a ha'penny pie,
Stand ye—there—out—by !

My Lord Provo', my Lord Provo', *
Where shall this poor fellow go ?
Some goes east, and some goes west,
And some goes to the craw's nest.

  Could this originate in a similar question propounded by one of the officers of the provost-marshal, to that dread dignitary, before whom many a " poor fellow" has been brought, for the determination of life or death ?

      " But all this while, Caleb, you have never told me what became of the arms and powder," said Ravenswood.
      " Why, as for the arms," said Caleb, " it was just like the bairn's rhyme—
Some gaed east, and some gaed west,
And some gaed to the craw's nest."           
Bride of Lammermoor.

      When the game is Tig, Hide-and-Seek, Hid-ee, or any of a similar character, all the boys go to some distance and hide themselves, except the tig, who waits with his face turned to a wall and covers his eyes, till his companions give notice that they are concealed, when he goes forth in quest of them. One by one, as they see opportunity, they leave their places of concealment, and run towards the den, which, if they reach without being touched by the tig, they are exempted from all further danger. The tig usually catches and touches some one upon the crown, before all are in— otherwise he has to be it for another game. While he goes about searching for whom he may catch, many voices from different quarters are heard exclaiming,
Keep in, keep in, wherever ye be,
The greedy gled is seekin ye !

      Bloody Tom is a common game among boys all over Scotland. All except two sit upon the ground in a   p.63 /   circle, in the centre of which stands one who acts as protector to the rest, while another parades round the outside. A dialogue then takes place between the two standing persons :
Middle.—Who goes round my house this night ?
    Outside.—Who but bloody Tom !
Middle.—Don't steal any of my chickens away.
    Ouside.—None but this poor one !
Bloody Tom then carries off one of the hapless wights from the circle, notwithstanding the efforts of his protector, while the rest cower more closely around him. The circle, as the rhyme is repeated, gradually grows smaller and smaller, till the whole are taken away.

    * Anglicé, the Game of Forfeits.

      The wadds was played by a group seated round the hearth fire, the lasses being on one side and the lads on the other. A lad first chants—
Oh, it's hame, and it's hame, and it's hame, hame, hame, †
I think this night I maun gae hame.
  Var.—I'm ringing, I'm singing, I'm bound for home.

One of the opposite party then says—
Ye had better light, and bide a' night,
And I'll choose you a bonnie ane.
The first party again speaks—
Oh, wha will ye choose, an I wi' you bide ?
The fairest and rarest in a' the country side.
At the same time presenting an unmarried female by name. If the choice give satisfaction—
I'll set her up on the bonnie pear-tree,
It's straught and tall, and sae is she ;
I wad wauk a' night her love to be.
If the choice do not give satisfaction, from the age of the party—
I'll set her up i' the bank dyke,
She'll be rotten ere I be ripe ;
The corbies her auld banes wadna pyke
If from supposed want of temper—
I'll set her up on the high crab-tree ;
It's sour and dour, and sae is she ;
She may gang to the mools unkissed by me.
A civil mode of declining is to say—
She's for another and no for me ;
I thank you for your courtesie.
The same ritual is of course gone through with respect to one of the other sex ; in which case such rhymes as the following are used :—
I'll put him on a riddle and blaw him ower the sea,
Wha'll buy [ Johny Paterson ] for me ?
I'll put him on my big lum head,
And blaw him up wi' powther and lead.
Or, when the proposed party is agreeable—
I'll set him on my table head,
And feed him up wi' milk and bread.
A refusal must be atoned for by a wadd or forfeit. A piece of money, a knife, or any little thing which the owner prizes, will serve. When a sufficient number of persons have made forfeits, the business of redeeming them is commenced, and generally it is then that the amusement is greatest. The duty of kissing some person, or some part of the room, is usually assigned as a means of redeeming one's wadds. Often for this purpose a lad has to kiss the very lips he formerly rejected. Such jocundities amused many a winter night in the days of lang-syne.*

  The substance of the above is from a note in Cromek's Remains of Nithsdale and Galloway Song, p. 114.

      A group of lads and lasses, as in the above game, being assembled round the fire, two leave the party, and consult apart as to the names of three others, young men or girls, whom they designate as the Red Rose, the Pink, and the Jelliflower. We shall suppose that lads are to be pitched upon. The two return to the fireside circle, and having selected (we shall suppose) a member of the fairer portion of the group, they say to her—
My mistress sent me unto thine,
Wi' three young flowers baith fair and fine—
The pink, the rose, and the jelliflouir ;
    And as they here do stand,
Whilk will ye sink, whilk will ye swim,
    And whilk bring hame to land ?
The maiden must choose one of the flowers named, on which she passes some approving epithet, adding, at the same time, a disapproving rejection of the other two—for instance, in the following terms : " I will sink the Pink, swim the Rose, and bring hame the Jelliflower to land." The two young men then disclose the names of the parties upon whom they had fixed those appellations respectively, when, of course, it may chance that she has slighted the person she is understood to be most attached to, or chosen him whom she is believed to regard with aversion ; either of which events is sure to throw the company into a state of outrageous merriment.

      Two boys, remarkable as good runners, are placed between two doons or places of safety, at one of which a flock of other boys pitch themselves. The runners then come forward and address the rest in this rhyme :
King and Queen of Cantelon,
How mony miles to Babylon ?
Six, or seven, or a lang eight—
Try to win there wi' candle-light.
Whereupon the company break forth and make for the opposite doon with all their might, and avoiding the two runners, who pursue and endeavour to catch as many as possible. On catching any, the runner places his hand upon their heads, when they are said to be taned, and are set aside. The game is repeated and continued till all are taned.

      This well-known game very much resembles Barley Break, the pastime of high-born lords and ladies in the time of Sir Philip Sidney, who describes it in his Arcadia. The boys first choose sides. The two chosen leaders join both hands, and raising them high enough to let the others pass through below, cry thus—
Brother Jack, if ye'll be mine,
I'll gie you claret wine ;
Claret wine is good and fine,
    Through the needle ee, boys.
Letting their arms fall, they enclose a boy, and ask him to which side he will belong, and he is disposed according to his own decision. The parties, being at length formed, are separated by a real or imaginary line, and place at some distance behind them, in a heap, their coats, hats, &c. They stand opposite to each other, the object being to make a successful incursion over the line into the enemy's country, and   p.64 /   bring off part of the heap of clothes. It requires both address and swiftness of foot to do so without being taken by the foe. The winning of the game is decided by which party first loses all its men or its property. At Hawick, where this legendary mimickry of old Border warfare peculiarly flourishes, the boys are accustomed to use the following rhyme of defiance :—
King Covenanter, come out if ye daur venture !
Set your feet on Scots grund, English, if ye daur !

      The Craw is a game admitting of a good deal of lively exercise, and involving no more than a reasonable portion of violence. One boy is selected to be craw. He sits down upon the ground ; and he and another boy then lay hold of the two ends of a long strap or twisted handkerchief. The latter also takes into his right hand another hard-twisted handkerchief, called the cout, and runs round the craw, and with the cout defends him against the attacks of the other boys, who, with similar couts, use all their agility to get a slap at the craw. But, before beginning, the guard of the craw must cry out—
Ane, twa, three—my craw's free.
And the first whom he strikes becomes craw, the former craw then taking the place of guard. When the guard wants a respite, he must cry—
Ane, twa, three—my craw's no free.

      This is a game much played at country schools in the south-west province of Scotland.
      " One of the biggest of the boys steals away from his comrades, in an angry-like mood, to some dyke or sequestered nook, and there begins to work as if putting a pot upon a fire. The others seem alarmed at his manner, and gather round him, when the following dialogue takes place.
     They say first to him—
' What are ye for wi' the pot, gudeman ?
       Say what are ye for wi' the pot ?
   We dinna like to see ye, gudeman,
       Sae thrang about this spot.

   We dinna like ye ava', gudeman,
       We dinna like ye ava' ;
   Are ye gaun to grow a gled, * gudeman,
       And our necks draw and thraw ? '

He answers—
' Your minnie, burdies, ye maun lea',
   Ten to my nocket † I maun hae,
   Ten to my e'enshanks, ‡ and or I gae lie,
   I'll lay twa dizzen o' ye by.
The mother then rejoins—
' Try't then, try't then, do what ye can,
  Maybe ye maun toomer sleep the night, gudeman.
  Try't then, try't then, Gled-Wylie frae the heuch,
  I'm no sae saft, Gled-Wylie, ye'll find me bauld and teuch.'
After these rhymes are said, the chickens cling to the mother all in a string, She fronts the flock, and does all she can to keep the kite from her brood ; but often he breaks the row, and catches his prey. Such is the sport of Gled-Wylie."§

  A kite.
    †   Lunch.
    ‡   An evening meal.
    §   Mactaggart's Gallovidian Encyclopædia, 1824.

      The games of female children in Scotland are very pretty, and have often given delight to adult witnesses. They are in general of a dramatic, or perhaps rather operatic, character. In some instances, the girls form themselves into two, three, or four parties, representing characters, such as a mother, father, daughter, and her suitors ; and it does not seem to be regarded as any breach of propriety or of the unities, that five or six individuals should come forward in one character. This admits the more into the pleasures of the game, and as they sing in chorus and in the singular number, the persona is not observable to be mismanaged by its numerous representatives. There is a strain of something like romance both in the incidents and language of some of these games, which it is difficult to reconcile with the idea of their being direct productions of the childish intellect. A somewhat more fanciful antiquary than the present editor, might suppose them to be at the least degenerate descendants of some masque-like plays which in former times regaled grown children. Usually, the versified parts are sung to airs of considerable beauty.
      The Merry-ma-tanzie is one of the most universally prevalent of these pretty games. It may be remarked in the first place, that this apparently unmeaning term is probably a corruption of Merry-May-dance, having been perhaps a sport practised in the festivities of the first of May in former times. According to the practice of the Upper Ward of Lanarkshire, a number of girls join hands in a circle, round one of their number who acts as a kind of mistress of the ceremonies. The circle moves slowly round the central lady, observing time with their feet, and singing to a pleasing air,
Here we go the jingo-ring,
    The jingo-ring, the jingo-ring,
Here we go the jingo-ring,
    About the merry-ma-tanzie.
At the end of the first line of the next verse, they curtsey to the girl in the inside, who returns the compliment:
Twice about, and then we fa',
    Then we fa', then we fa' ;
Twice about, and then we fa',
    About the merry-ma-tanzie.
The lady of the ring then selects a girl from the circle, of whom she asks her sweetheart's name, which is imparted in a whisper ; upon which she sings to those in the circle (they dancing round as before):
Guess ye wha's the young gudeman,
    The young gudeman, the young gudeman ;
Guess ye wha's the young gudeman,
    About the merry-ma-tanzie.
Those in the circle reply by some approving or depreciatory words, as may be prompted by the whim of the moment—such as,
Honey is sweet, and so is he,
    So is he, so is he ;
Honey is sweet, and so is he,
    About the merry-ma-tanzie.
Apples are sour, and so is he,
    So is he, so is he ;
Apples are sour, and so is he,
    About the merry-ma-tanzie.
The marriage, however, is finally concluded upon and effected, as indicated by the next stanza :
He's married wi' a gay gold ring,
    A gay gold ring, a gay gold ring ;
He's married wi' a gay gold ring,
    About the merry-ma-tanzie.

A gay gold ring's a cankerous thing,
    A cankerous thing, a cankerous thing ;
A gay gold ring's a cankerous thing ;
    About the merry-ma-tanzie.

At the end of the first line of the next verse, all go for a moment separate, and each performs a pirouette, clapping her hands above her head :

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Now they're married, I wish them joy,
    I wish them joy, I wish them joy ;
Now they're married, I wish them joy,
    About the merry-ma-tanzie.

Father and mother they must obey,
    Must obey, must obey ;
Father and mother they must obey,
    About the merry-ma-tanzie.

Loving each other like sister and brother,
    Sister and brother, sister and brother ;
Loving each other like sister and brother,
    About the merry-ma-tanzie.

We pray this couple may kiss together,
    Kiss together, kiss together ;
We pray this couple may kiss together,
    About the merry-ma-tanzie.

      Another form of this game is only a kind of dance, in which the girls first join hands in a circle, and sing while moving round, to the tune of Nancy Dawson,
Here we go round the mulberry bush,
    The mulberry bush, the mulberry bush ;
Here we go round the mulberry bush,
    And round the merry-ma-tanzie.
      Stopping short, with a curtsey at the conclusion, and disjoining hands, they then begin, with skirts held daintily up behind, to walk singly along, singing—
This is the way the ladies walk,
    The ladies walk, the ladies walk ;
This is the way the ladies walk,
    And round the merry-ma-tanzie.
At the last line, they re-unite, and again wheel round in a ring, singing, as before—
Here we go round the mulberry bush, &c.
After which, they perhaps simulate the walk of gentlemen, the chief feature of which is length of stride, concluding with the ring dance as before. Probably the next movement may be—
This is the way they wash the clothes,
    Wash the clothes, wash the clothes ;
This is the way they wash the clothes,
    And round the merry-ma-tanzie.
After which there is, as usual, the ring dance. They then represent ironing clothes, baking bread, washing the house, and a number of other familiar proceedings.
      The following is a fragment of this little ballet, as practised at Kilbarchan in Renfrewshire:
She synes the dishes three times a-day,
    Three times a-day, three times a-day ;
She synes the dishes three times a-day,
    Come alang wi' the merry-man-tanzie.

She bakes the scones three times a-day,
    Three times a-day, three times a-day ;
She bakes the scones three times a-day,
    Come alang wi' the merry-man-tanzie.

She ranges the stules three times a-day,
    Three times a-day, three times a-day ;
She ranges the stules three times a-day,
    Come alang wi' the merry-man-tanzie.

      The ritual of this game is nearly the same as that of the Merry-ma-tanzie ; but the words are varied. The girls in the ring sing as follows :—
Here's a poor widow from Babylon,
With six poor children all alone ;
One can bake, and one can brew,
One can shape, and one can sew,
One can sit at the fire and spin,
One can bake a cake for the king ;
Come choose you east, come choose you west,
Come choose the one that you love best.
The girl in the middle chooses a girl from the ring, naming her, and singing—
I choose the fairest that I do see,
[ Jeanie Hamilton ], ye'll come to me.
The girl chosen enters the ring, and imparts her sweetheart's name, when those in the ring sing—
Now they're married, I wish them joy,
Every year a girl or boy ;
Loving each other like sister and brother,
I pray this couple may kiss together.
Here the two girls within the ring kiss each other. The girl who first occupied the circle then joins the ring, while the girl who came in last enacts the part of mistress ; and so on, till all have had their turn.

      The party form a circle, taking hold of each others' hands. One sings, and the rest join, to the tune of Lullibullero
Fal de ral la, fal de ral la ;

while doing so they move a little sideways, and back again, beating the time (which is slow) with their feet. As soon as the line is concluded, each claps his hand and wheels grotesquely round, singing at the same moment the second line of the verse,
Hinkumbooby, round about.
then they sing, with the appropriate gesture—that is, throwing their right hand into the circle and the left out—
Right hands in, and left hands out,
still beating the time ; then add as before, while wheeling round, with a clap of the hands,
Hinkumbooby, round about ;
Fal de ral la, fal de ral la,
                [ Moving sideways as before, hand in hand.
Hinkumbooby, round about.
                [ Wheeling round as before, with a clap of the hand.

Left hands in, and right hands out,
Hinkumbooby, round about ;
Fal de ral la, fal de ral la,
Hinkumbooby, round about.

Right foot in, and left foot out,
                [ Right foot set into the circle.
Hinkumbooby, round about ;
Fal de ral la, fal de ral la,
Hinkumbooby, round about.

Left foot in, and right foot out,
Hinkumbooby, round about ;
Fal de ral la, &c.

Heads in and backs out,
                [ Heads thrust into the circle.
Hinkumbooby, round about ;
Fal de ral la, &c.

Backs in, and heads out,
                [ Here an inclination of the person, somewhat grotesque.
Hinkumbooby, round about ;
Fal de ral la, &c.

A' feet in, and nae feet out,
                [ On this occasion all sit down, with their
                  feet stretched into the centre of the ring.
Hinkumbooby, round about ;
Fal de ral la, &c.

  It is a great point to sit down and rise up promptly enough to be ready for the wheel round.

p.66 /
Shake hands a', shake hands a',
                [ This explains itself.
Hinkumbooby, round about ;
Fal de ral la, &c.

Good night a', good night a',
                [ The boys bowing and the misses curt-
                  seying in an affected formal manner.

Hinkumbooby, round about ;
Fal de ral la, &c.

      A number of young girls stand in a row, from which two retire, and again approach hand in hand, singing—
A dis, a dis, a green grass,
    A dis, a dis, a dis ;
Come all ye pretty fair maids,
    And dance along with us.

For we are going a-roving,
    A-roving in this land ;
We'll take this pretty fair maid,
    We'll take her by the hand.

They select a girl from the group, and take her by the hand, singing to her—
Ye shall get a duke, my dear,
    And ye shall get a drake ; *
And ye shall get a young prince—
    A young prince for your sake.

And if this young prince chance to die,
    Ye shall get another ;
The bells will ring, and the birds will sing,
    And we'll all clap hands together.

Then there is a chorus and clapping of hands. The same thing is renewed, till the whole of the girls have got dukes, drakes, and princes.

  For rhyme's sake, no doubt.


DRAMATIS PERSONÆA Father, Mother, Janet, and a Lover.
      Janet lies on her back behind the scenes. The father and mother stand up to receive the visits of the lover, who comes forward singing, to a very pretty air—
I'm come to court Janet jo,
    Janet jo, Janet jo ;
I'm come to court Janet jo—
    How's she the day ?
Mother and Father—
She's up the stair washin,
    Washin, washin ;
She's up the stair washin,
    Ye canna see her the day.
The lover retires, and again advances with the same announcement of his object and purposes, to which he receives similar evasive answers from Janet's parents, who successively represent her as bleaching, drying, and ironing clothes. At last they say—
Janet jo's dead and gane,
    Dead and gane, dead and gane ;
Janet jo's dead and gane,
    She'll never come hame !
She is then carried off to be buried, the lover and the rest weeping. She sometimes revives (to their great joy), and sometimes not, ad libitum—that is, as Janet herself chooses.
      The above is the Edinburgh version. A south-country one differs a little, representing Janet as at the well instead of up stairs, and afterwards at the mill, &c. A Glasgow edition gives the whole in good west-country prose, and the lover begins—" I'm come to court your dochter, Kate MacKleister ! "

      The dramatis personæ form themselves in two parties, one representing a courtly dame and her daughters, the other the suitors of the daughters. The last party, moving backwards and forwards, with their arms entwined, approach and recede from the mother party, which is stationary, singing to a very sweet air—
We are three brethren come from Spain,
    All in French garlands ;
We are come to court your daughter Jean,
    And adieu to you, my darlings.
They recede, while the mother replies—
My daughter Jean, she is too young,
    All in French garlands ;
She cannot bide your flattering tongue,
    And adieu to you, my darlings.
The suitors again advance, rejoining—
Be she young, or be she old,
    All in French garlands ;
It's for a bride she must be sold,
    And adieu to you, my darlings.
The mother still refuses her consent :
A bride, a bride, she shall not be,
    All in French garlands ;
Till she go through this world with me,
    And adieu to you, my darlings.
[ There is here a hiatus, the reply of the lovers being wanting.] The mother, at length relenting, says—
Come back, come back, you courteous knights,
    All in French garlands ;
Clear up your spurs and make them bright,
    And adieu to you, my darlings.
[ Another hiatus.] The mother offers a choice of her daughters in the next verse :
Smell my lilies, smell my roses,
     All in French garlands ;
Which of my maidens do you choose ?
    And adieu to you, my darlings.
The lover now becomes fastidious in proportion to his good fortune, and affects to scruple in his choice:
Are all your daughters safe and sound ?
    All in French garlands ;
Are all your daughters safe and sound ?
    And adieu to you, my darlings.
But it would appear that he is quite assured by the answer, and marries the " daughter Jean" accordingly, as no further demur is made.
In every pocket a thousand pounds,
    All in French garlands ;
On every finger a gay gold ring,
    And adieu to you, my darlings.
The game, as it is called, then ends by some little childish trick.

squiggly rulesquiggly rule


HE last day of the old year and the first of the new one are generally observed throughout Scotland with much festivity. Till a recent period, this festivity approached to license, and, from the frantic merriment which reigned in most minds the time was called the Daft (i. e. mad) Days. But now these follies are much corrected. The only other day about this period which was held in any respect was Handsel Monday, that is, the first Monday of the new year, on which day people made presents (handsels) to their friends, particularly to those of tender age. Handsel Monday was   p.67 /   also a favourite day for family meetings, and in some rural districts it is still such ; but in these cases the day according to old style is usually preferred.
      Christmas and Twelfth Night, days so much observed in England, attract no regard in Scotland : the latter may be said to be not only unrecognised, but unknown. This is no doubt owing to the persevering efforts made by the Presbyterian clergy, for a century after the Reformation, to extinguish all observance of Christmas. In the Highlands alone, and amongst Episcopalian families in large towns, is the festival of the Nativity held in any regard. In the Lowlands, there exists amongst the people only a shadowy traditionary idea of its character as a holiday and day of feasting. The boys have a rhyme—
On Christmas night I turned the spit,
I burnt my fingers—I find it yet.
And in Fife there is another stanza alluding to its festive character—
Yule's come and Yule's gane,
    And we hae feasted weel ;
Sae Jock maun to his flail again,
    And Jenny to her wheel.
      Scotland has also in its time partaken of the old religious rites with which Christmas used to be celebrated at the peasant's fireside. The boys are still well acquainted with the rhyme alluded to in Ellis's edition of Brand's Popular Antiquities, as having been descriptive of, or allusive to, a certain domestic ceremony—
Yule, Yule, Yule,
Three puddings in a pule !
Crack nuts and cry Yule !
      These are faint memorials of the Scottish Christmas or Yule, but they tend to illustrate the remark of Coleridge as to the difficulty of altogether erasing the marks of " that which once hath been." They show that even a high religious principle may fail to extinguish the humblest and homeliest custom, if it once be a custom, and have any recommendation from the universal taste for amusement. Old ballads allude to the hallow (or holy) days of Yule :—
" When the hallow days o' Yule were come,              
      And the nichts were lang and mirk,
  Then in and came her ain twa sons,
      And their hats made o' the birk."
The Clerk's Twa Sons of Owsenford.
      It is here to be observed, that Christmas was only known in Scotland by the term Yule, a word also retained in some parts of England. The Court of Session had its " Yule vacance ;" people spoke of keeping good clothes for " Pace and Yule ;" and there was a notable proverb, to the effect that a " Green Yule makes a fat kirkyard," which, by the way, modern statisticians ascertain to be not true, the fact being that a hard winter is always the most fatal to human life. Yule, or Iol, was in reality the great annual festival of the ancient Scandinavians—a time of unlimited feasting, drinking, and dancing ; and upon it the early Christian missionaries engrafted the festival of the Nativity, in order to give as little disturbance as possible to the customs of the people. Thus, in celebrating this festival, the name of the old one was naturally retained.
      But we hasten from Christmas to Hogmanay—from the shadow to the substance. Hogmanay is the universal popular name in Scotland for the last day of the year. It is a day of high festival among young and old—but particularly the young, who do not regard any of the rest of the Daft Days with half so much interest. It is still customary, in retired and primitive towns, for the children of the poorer class of people to get themselves on that morning swaddled up in a great sheet, doubled up in front, so as to form a vast pocket, and then to go along the streets in little bands, calling at the doors of the wealthier classes, for an expected dole of oaten bread. Each child gets one quadrant section of oat-cake (sometimes, in the case of particular favourites, improved by an addition of cheese), and this is called their hogmanay. In expectation of the large demands thus made upon them, the housewives busy themselves, for several days beforehand, in preparing a suitable quantity of cakes. A particular individual, in our own knowledge, has frequently resolved two bolls of meal into hogmanay cakes. The children, on coming to the door, cry " Hogmanay !" which is in itself a sufficient announcement of their demands ; but there are other exclamations, which either are or might be used for the same purpose. One of these is,

Give us of your white bread and none of your grey !

What is precisely meant by the mysterious word hogmanay, or by the still more inexplicable trollolay, has been a subject fertile in dispute to Scottish antiquaries, as the reader will find by an inspection of the Archæologia Scottica. A suggestion of the late Professor Robison of Edinburgh seems the best, that the word Hogmanay was derived from " Au gui menez " (To the mistletoe go), which mummers formerly cried in France at Christmas. At the same time, it was customary for these persons to rush unceremoniously into houses, playing antic tricks, and bullying the inmates for money and choice victuals, crying, " Tire-lire (referring to a small money-box they carried), maint du blanc, et point du bis." These various cries, it must be owned, are as like as possible to

Give us of your white bread and none of your grey !
Of the many other cries appropriate to the morning of Hogmanay, some of the less puerile may be chronicled :
Get up, gudewife, and shake your feathers,
And dinna think that we are beggars ;
For we are bairns come out to play,
Get up and gie's our hogmanay !
The following is of a moralising character, though a good deal of a truism :
Get up, gudewife, and binna sweir,
And deal your bread to them that's here ;
For the time will come when ye'll be dead,
And then ye'll neither need ale nor bread.
One is in a very peevish strain ; but, as saith the sage, " Blessed is he that expects little, for he will not be disappointed :"—
My shoon are made of hoary hide,
Behind the door I downa bide ;
My tongue is sair, I daurna sing—
I fear I will get little thing.
The most favourite of all, however, is much smarter, more laconic, and more to the point, than any of the foregoing :
My feet's cauld, my shoon's thin ;
Gie's a piece, and let's rin !
      It is no unpleasing scene, during the forenoon, to see the children going laden home, each with his large apron bellying out before him, stuffed full of cakes, and perhaps scarcely able to waddle under the load. Such a mass of oaten alms is no inconsiderable addition to the comfort of the poor man's household, and tends to make the season still more worthy of its jocund title.
      In the Highlands, the first night of the year is marked by a curious custom, of superstitious appearance, of which no trace exists in the Lowlands. Young and old having collected, probably at some substantial farmer's house, one of the stoutest of the   p.68 /   party gets a dried cow's hide, which he drags behind him. The rest follow, beating the hide with sticks, and singing—
Collin a Chuilig,
Bhuigh bhoichin,
Buol in chraichin,
Callich si chuil,
Callich si chiel,
Callich eli in ceun im tennie,
Bir na da Huil,
Bir na Gillie,
Chollin so.
Translated literally thus:
Hug man a',
Yellow bag,
Beat the skin,
Carlin in neuk,
Carlin in kirk,
Carlin ben at the fire,
Spit in her two eyes,
Spit in her stomach,
Hug man a'.
After going round the house three times, they all halt at the door, and each person utters an extempore rhyme, extolling the hospitality of the landlord and landlady ; after which they are plentifully regaled with bread, butter, cheese and whisky. Before leaving the house, one of the party burns the breast part of the skin of a sheep, and puts it to the nose of every one, that all may smell it, as a charm against witchcraft and every infection.
      The doings of the guizards (that is, masquers) form a conspicuous feature in the New-Year proceedings throughout Scotland. The evenings on which these personages are understood to be privileged to appear, are those of Christmas, Hogmanay, New-Year's Day, and Handsel Monday. Such of the boys as can pretend to any thing like a voice, have for weeks before been thumbing the collection of excellent new songs, which lies like a bunch of rags in the window sole, and being now able to screech up " Barbara Allan," or the " Wee cot-house and the wee kail-yardie," they determine upon enacting the part of guizards. For this purpose they don old shirts belonging to their fathers, and mount casques of brown paper, shaped so like a mitre, that I am tempted to believe them borrowed from the Abbot of Un-reason : attached to this is a sheet of the same paper, which, falling down in front, covers and conceals the whole face, except where holes are made to let through the point of the nose, and afford sight to the eyes and breath to the mouth. Each vocal guizard is, like a knight of old, attended by a kind of humble squire, who assumes the habiliments of a girl, with an old woman's cap, and a broomstick, and is styled " Bessie." Bessie is equal in no respect, except that she shares fairly in the proceeds of the enterprise. She goes before her principal ; opens all the doors at which he pleases to exert his singing powers, and busies herself, during the time of the song, in sweeping the floor with her broomstick, or in playing any other antics that she thinks may amuse the indwellers. The common reward of this entertainment is a halfpenny ; but many churlish persons fall upon the unfortunate guizards, and beat them out of the house. Let such persons, however, keep a good watch upon their cabbage gardens next Halloween !
      The more important doings of the guizards are of a theatrical character. There is one rude and grotesque drama which they are accustomed to perform on each of the four above-mentioned nights, and which, in various fragments or versions, exists in every part of Lowland Scotland. The performers, who are never less than three, but sometimes as many as six, having dressed themselves, proceed in a band from house to house, generally contenting themselves with the kitchen for an arena, whither, in mansions presided over by the spirit of good humour, the whole family will resort to witness the spectacle. Sir Walter Scott, who delighted to keep up old customs, and could condescend to simple things without losing genuine dignity, invariably had a set of guizards to perform this play before his family, both at Ashestiel and Abbotsford. The editor has with some difficulty obtained what appears a tolerably complete copy.

    DRAMATIS PERSONÆTwo Fighting-Men or Knights, one of whom is called BLACK KNIGHT, the other GALATIAN (sometimes GALATIUS or GALGACUS), and alternatively JOHN ; a Doctor ; a fourth Personage, who plays the same talking and demonstrating part with the Chorus in the Greek drama ; a Young Man, who is little more than a bystander ; and JUDAS , the purse-bearer.
      Galatian is (at the royal burgh of Peebles) dressed in a good whole shirt, tied round the middle with a handkerchief, from which hangs a wooden sword. He has a large cocked hat of white paper, either cut out with little human profiles, or pasted over with penny valentines. The Black Knight is more terrific in appearance, his dress being, if possible, of tartan, and his head surmounted by an old cavalry cap, while his white stockings are all tied round with red tape. A pair of flaming whiskers adds to the ferocity of his aspect. The Doctor is attired in any faded black clothes which can be had, with a hat probably stolen from a neighbouring scare-crow.

Enter TALKING MAN, and speaks.
Haud away rocks, and haud away reels,
Haud away stocks and spinning-wheels.
Redd room for Gorland, and gie us room to sing,
And I will show you the prettiest thing
That ever was seen in Christmas time.
Muckle head and little wit, stand ahint the door ;
But sic a set as we are, ne'er were here before.
—Show yourself, Black Knight !

Enter BLACK KNIGHT, and speaks.
Here comes in Black Knight, the great King of Macedon,
Who has conquered all the world but Scotland alone.
When I came to Scotland my heart it grew cold,
To see a little nation so stout and so bold—
So stout and so bold, so frank and so free :
Call upon Galatian to fight wi' me.

Enter GALATIAN, and speaks.
Here come I, Galatian ; Galatian is my name ;
Sword and buckler by my side, I hope to win the game.

The game, sir, the game, sir, it is not in your power ;
I'll hash you and slash you in less than half an hour.*

  The following is the commencement of the play, as performed in the neighbourhood of Falkirk :—
Open your door and let us in,
We hope your favour for to win ;
We're none of your roguish sort,
But come of your noble train ;
If you don't believe what I say,
I'll call in the King of Macedon,
And he shall clear his way !

Enter KING.
Here in come I, the great King of Macedon,
I've conquered this world round and round ;
But when I came to Scotland, my courage grew so cold,
To see a little nation so stout and so bold ;
*         *         *         *         *
If you don't believe what I say,
I'll call in Prince George of Ville, and he shall clear his way.

Enter PRINCE GEORGE of Ville.
Here in comes I, Prince George of Ville,
A Ville of valiant light [might ?] ;
Here I sit and spend my right,
p.69 /
  *     *     *    and reason ;
Here I draw my bloody weapon,
My bloody weapon shines so clear,
I'll run it right into your ear.
If you don't believe what I say,
I'll call in the Slasher, and he shall clear his way !

Here comes in I, Slasher ; Slasher is my name ;
With sword and buckle by my side, I hope to win the game.

My head is made of iron, my heart is made of steel,
And my sword is a Ferrara, that can do its duty weel.
[ They fight, and Galatian is worsted, and falls.
Down, Jack, down to the ground you must go.
Oh ! oh ! what is this I've done ?—
I've killed my brother Jack, my father's only son !

Here's two bloody champions that never fought before ;
And we are come to rescue him, and what can we do more ?
Now Galatian he is dead, and on the floor is laid,
And ye shall suffer for it, I'm very sore afraid.

I'm sure it was not I, sir, I'm innocent of the crime ;
'Twas this young man behind me, who drew the sword sae fine.

The Young Man answers.
Oh, you awful villain ! to lay the blame on me ;
When my two eyes were shut, sir, when this young man did die.

How could your two eyes be shut, when you were looking on ?
How could your two eyes be shut, when their swords were drawn ?
—Is there ever a doctor to be found ?

Call in Doctor Brown,
The best in all the town.

Enter DOCTOR, and says—
Here comes in as good a doctor as ever Scotland bred,
And I have been through nations, a-learning of my trade ;
And now I've come to Scotland, all for to cure the dead.

What can you cure ?

I can cure the rurvy scurvy,
And the rumble-gumption of a man that has been seven years in his grave or more ;
I can make an old woman of sixty look like a girl of sixteen.

What will you take to cure this dead man ?

Ten pounds.

Will not one do ?


Will not three do ?


Will not five do ?


Will not seven do ?


Will not nine do ?

Yes, perhaps—nine may do, and a pint of wine.
I have a little bottle of inker-pinker * in my pocket.
(Aside to G
ALATIAN.) Take a little drop of it.
By the hocus-pocus, and the magical touch of my little finger,
Start up, John.

GALATIAN rises, and exclaims—
Oh, my back !

What ails your back ?

There's a hole in't you may turn your nieve ten times round in it.

How did you get it ?

Fighting for our land.

How many did you kill ?

I killed a' the loons but ane, that ran, and wadna stand.
[ The whole party dance, and Galatian sings.
Oh, once I was dead, sir, but now I am alive,
And blessed be the doctor that made me revive.
We'll all join hands, and never fight more,
We'll a' be good brothers, as we have been before.

Enter JUDAS, with the bag, and speaks.

Here comes in Judas ; Judas is my name ;
If ye put not siller in my bag, for gudesake mind our wame !
When I gaed to the Castle yett, and tirled at the pin,
They keepit the keys o' the castle, and wadna let me in.
I've been i' the east carse,
I've been i' the west carse,
I've been i' the Carse o' Gowrie,
Where the cluds rain a' day peas and beans,
And the farmers theek houses wi' needles and prins. [lit.]
I've seen geese gawn on pattens,
And swine fleein i' the air like peelings o' ingons !
Our hearts are made o' steel, but our bodies sma' as ware—
If you've ony thing to gie us, stap it in there.†

Blessed be the master o' this house, and the mistress also,
And all the little babies that round the table grow ;
Their pockets full of money, the bottles full of beer—
A merry Christmas, guizards, and a happy New Year.

  Small beer.
    †   In the west of Scotland, instead of Judas and his speech, enter a Demon or Giant, with a large stick over his shoulder, and sings,
Here come I, auld Beelzebub ;
Over my shoulders I carry my club,
In my hand a dripping-pan ;
Am not I a jolly old man ?

Here come I, auld Diddletie-doubt,
Gie me money or I'll sweep ye a' out.
Money I want and money I crave ;
If ye don't gie me money I'll sweep ye till your grave.


p.70 /

      Mr Hone's Every-Day Book presented several communications, making it clear that a play greatly resembling the above is acted in many parts of England, on Christmas evening, by young persons called Mummers, or Old Father Christmas' Boys. A full copy of this drama, as performed at Whitehaven, was printed in eight pages octavo, by T. Wilson of that town ; and, from parts of it extracted by one of Mr Hone's correspondents, we find that the leading characters are Alexander the Great, the King of Egypt, and Prince George, son of the latter monarch. Alexander and Prince George fight, as the Black Knight and Galatian do in the Scottish play. The following passage may serve as a specimen :—

  " P. George. I am Prince George, a champion brave and bold,
For with my spear I've won three crowns of gold :
'Twas I that brought the dragon to the slaughter,
And I that gained the Egyptian monarch's daughter ;
In Egypt's fields I prisoner long was kept,
But by my valour I from them escaped ;
I sounded loud at the gate of a divine,
And out came a giant of no good design,
He gave me a blow which almost struck me dead,
But I up with my sword and cut off his head.
    Alex. Hold, Slacker, hold, pray do not be so hot,
For in this spot thou know'st not who thou'st got ;
'Tis I that's to hash thee and smash thee as small as flies,
And send thee to Satan to make mince pies.
Mince pies hot, mince pies cold,
I'll send thee to Satan ere thou'rt three days old :
But hold, Prince George, before you go away,
Either you or I must die this bloody day,
Some mortal wounds thou shalt receive by me,
So let us fight it out most manfully."

Mr Sandys, in his elegant volume of Christmas Carols (1833), transcribes a play called St George, which is still acted at the new year in Cornwall, exactly after the manner of our Scottish play of Galatian, which it resembles as much as various versions of Galatian in Scotland resemble each other. The leading characters, besides St George himself, and the Dragon, who is twice killed, are a Turkish knight and the King of Egypt. It is curious thus to find one play, with unimportant variations, preserved traditionally by the common people in parts of the island so distant from each other, and in many respects so different.
      Still more curious it is to consider of what an ancient custom this is a relic and living memorial. The simple swains of Peeblesshire, when they shuffle into the houses of their neighbours to play Galatian, little think that such goings on were strictly forbidden by the Concilium Africanum in the year 408, as well as by another council of the church at Auxerre in Burgundy in 614. The Plantagenet kings of England were regularly regaled every Christmas with such plays ; and even down to the time of Elizabeth, a play was one of the constant amusements of Christmas in the universities and inns of court. If we were to judge of the antiquity of Galatian from its language, we would assign it to the early part of the sixteenth century, on account of its resemblance to the structure of verse found in such specimens of primeval English comedy as Ralph Royster Doyster and Gammer Gurton's Needle, which were productions of the reign of Mary.
      The rhymes connected with the performance of the Sword-Dance, an ancient Scandinavian amusement, which lingered till a recent period in Shetland, bear a considerable resemblance to those of Galatian. They have fortunately been preserved in a succession of copies, the last of which was written, about 1788, by Mr William Henderson, younger of Papa Stour, one of the remotest of the Shetland islands, where the dance or ballet is even now sometimes performed. This document is given by Sir Walter Scott amongst the notes which he latterly appended to the novel of the Pirate :



Enter MASTER, in the character of ST GEORGE.

Brave gentles all within this boor,†
If ye delight in any sport,
Come see me dance upon this floor,
Which to you all shall yield comfort.
Then shall I dance in such a sort,
As possible I may or can ;
You, minstrel men, play me a porte,‡
That I on this floor may prove a man.               
[He bows, and dances in a line.
Now have I danced with heart and hand,
Brave gentles all, as you may see ;
For I have been tried in many a land,
As yet the truth can testify :
In England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Italy, and Spain,
Have I been tried with that good sword of steel.
[Draws and flourishes.
Yet I deny that ever a man did make me yield ;
For in my body there is strength,
As by my manhood may be seen ;
And I with that good sword of length,
Have oftentimes in perils been,
And over champions I was king.
And by the strength of this right hand,
Once on a day I killed fifteen,
And left them dead upon the land.
Therefore, brave minstrel, do not care,
But play to me a porte most light,
That I no longer do forbear,
But dance in all these gentles' sight ;
Although my strength makes you abased,
Brave gentles all, be not afraid,
For here are six champions, with me, staid,
All by my manhood I have raised.          [He dances.
Since I have danced, I think it best
To call my brethren in your sight,
That I may have a little rest,
And they may dance with all their might ;
With heart and hand as they are knights,
And shake their swords of steel so bright,
And show their main strength on this floor,
For we shall have another bout
Before we pass out of this door.
Therefore, brave minstrel, do not care
To play to me a porte most light,
That I no longer do forbear,
But dance in all these gentles' sight.
[He dances, and then introduces his knights, as under.
Stout James of Spain, both tried and stour,§
Thine acts are known full well indeed ;
And Champion Dennis, a French knight,
Who stout and bold is to be seen ;
And David, a Welshman born,
Who is come of noble blood ;
And Patrick, also, who blew the horn,
An Irish knight, amongst the wood.
Of Italy, brave Anthony the good,
And Andrew of Scotland King :
St George of England, brave indeed,
Who to the Jews wrought muckle tinte.||
Away with this !—Let us come to sport ;
Since that ye have a mind to war,
  So placed in the old M. S.
    †   Boor—so spelt, to accord with the vulgar pronunciation of the word bower.
    ‡   Porte—so spelt in the original. The word is known as indicating a piece of music on the bagpipe, to which ancient instrument, which is of Scandinavian origin, the sword-dance may have been originally composed.
    §   Stour—great.
   ||   Muckle tinte—much loss or harm ; so in MS.

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Since that ye have this bargain sought,
Come let us fight and do not fear.
Therefore, brave minstrel, do not care
To play to me a porte most light,
That I no longer do forbear,
But dance in all these gentles' sight.                              
[He dances, and advances to JAMES of Spain.
Stout James of Spain, both tried and stour,
Thine acts are known full well indeed,
Present thyself within our sight,
Without either fear or dread.
Count not for favour or for feid,
Since of thy acts thou hast been sure ;
Brave James of Spain, I will thee lead,
To prove thy manhood on this floor.        [ J
AMES dances.
Brave Champion Dennis, a French knight,
Who stout and bold is to be seen,
Present thyself here in our sight,
Thou brave French knight,
Who bold hast been ;
Since thou such valiant acts hast done,
Come let us see some of them now ;
With courtesy, thou brave French knight,
Draw out thy sword of noble hue.
[ DENNIS dances, while the others retire to a side.
Brave David a bow must string, and with awe
Set up a wand upon a stand,
And that brave David will cleave in twa.*
[ DAVID dances solus.
Here is, I think, an Irish knight,
Who does not fear, or does not fright,
To prove thyself a valiant man,
As thou hast done full often bright ;
Brave Patrick, dance, if that thou can.            [He dances.
Thou stout Italian, come thou here ;
Thy name is Anthony, most stout ;
Draw out thy sword that is most clear,
And do thou fight without any doubt ;
Thy leg thou shake, thy neck thou lout,†
And show some courtesy on this floor,
For we shall have another bout,
Before we pass out of this boor.
Thou kindly Scotsman, come thou here ;
Thy name is Andrew of fair Scotland ;
Draw out thy sword that is most clear,
Fight for thy king with thy right hand ;
And aye as long as thou canst stand,
Fight for thy king with all thy heart ;
And then, for to confirm his band,
Make all his enemies for to smart.                   [He dances.
(Music begins.)
  Something is evidently amiss or omitted here. David probably exhibited some feat of archery.
    †   Lout—to bend or bow down, pronounced loot, as doubt is doot in Scotland.

  Figuir—so spelt in MS.

      The six stand in rank, with their swords reclining on their shoulders. The master (St George) dances, and then strikes the sword of James of Spain, who follows George, then dances, strikes the sword of Dennis, who follows behind James. In like manner, the rest—the music playing—swords as before. After the six are brought out of rank, they and the master form a circle, and hold the swords point and hilt. This circle is danced round twice. The whole, headed by the master, pass under the swords held in a vaulted manner. They jump over the swords. This naturally places the swords across, which they disentangle by passing under their right sword. They take up the seven swords, and form a circle, in which they dance round.
      The master runs under the sword opposite, which he jumps over backwards. The others do the same. He then passes under the right-hand sword, which the others follow ; in which position they dance, until commanded by the master, when they form into a circle, and dance round as before. They then jump over the right-hand sword, by which means their backs are to the circle, and their hands across their backs. They dance round in that form until the master calls ' Loose,' when they pass under the right sword, and are in a perfect circle.
      The master lays down his sword, and lays hold of the point of James's sword. He then turns himself, James, and the others, into a clew. When so formed, he passes under out of the midst of the circle ; the others follow ; they vault as before. After several other evolutions, they throw themselves into a circle, with their arms across the breast. They afterwards form such figures as to make a shield of their swords, and the shield is so compact that the master and his knights dance alternately with this shield upon their heads. It is then laid down upon the floor. Each knight lays hold of their former points and hilts with their hands across, which disentangle by figures directly contrary to those that formed the shield. This finishes the ballet.

Mars does rule, he bends his brows,
He makes us all agast ; *
After the few hours that we stay here,
Venus will rule at last.
Farewell, farewell, brave gentles all,
That herein do remain ;
I wish you health and happiness,
Till we return again.                             [Exeunt."
  Agast—so spelt in MS.

      In addition to these specimens of the traditional drama, there may here be introduced, though somewhat out of place, a nursery play, usually called Katharine Nipsy, which old women in Scotland perform on their fingers for the amusement of children. It is taken down from a person of sixty years of age, who heard it in infancy from an aged relative. There can be little doubt, from its allusion to a friar, that it must date from at least the early part of the sixteenth century ; but it is probably, in one form or another, much older. It seems the very first lisping of the imitative muse. The remark is here forced upon us, that there has been much needless speculation about the origin of dramatic performances. Whoever has enjoyed opportunities of witnessing the pranks of children left to amuse themselves, must have been convinced that theatricals are dictated immediately by nature, and must have always been since there were human beings. Children transform themselves and every inanimate object around them—chairs, cushions, or whatever else—into fictitious beings, and readily suppose them to be engaged in a series of fictitious operations. One day, passing through a mean street in the suburbs of Edinburgh, I observed a group of children amusing themselves on the pavement. Presently two left the group, in a formal affected manner, while one of them said to the other, " You and I are two men going away to a public house"—a supposititious procedure, which had evidently been suggested to the poor children by the real doings unhappily seen every day around them. In such little glimpses of nature, illustrations of great questions can sometimes be obtained. Unquestionably, what children are seen doing amongst ourselves, of their own accord, may be easily supposed as done by grown persons in a primitive society.



      The nurse says, " Now come, bairns, and I'll tell ye the bonnie story o' Katharine Nipsy." [All flock about her, and she begins by holding up her right hand before them, the back of it downwards, and the   p.72 /   fingers turned up. The first and third finger are brought together as close as possible, to represent the door of the house ; while the second remains behind, to represent a robber in the disguise of a friar, wanting admittance. The thumb is the lady of the house, and the little finger is Katharine Nipsy, her servant. All being thus arranged, the second finger is made to tap twice at the supposed door.]

THE LADY (in a grave slow voice.)
Who's that knocking at my door, Katharine Nipsy ?

KATHARINE (in a sharp quick voice).
Wha's that knocking at my lady's door ?
                               [Little finger wagged peremptorily

THE DISGUISED ROBBER (in a low entreating tone).
A poor friar—a poor friar.

It's a poor friar, my lady.

LADY (inclining her head kindly).
Bid him come in ; bid him come in.

[The first and third finger are then parted, and the second comes forward between, bowing twice as he enters.

Your servant, madam ; your servant, madam.

NURSE (in a hurried voice).
And he worried them a' !

squiggly rulesquiggly rule


      The following was a formula of acknowledgment made at the doors of churches, in former times, as a reparation for scandal :—
First I ca'd her honest woman—
    'Twas true, indeed ;
Neist I ca'd her [ jade ] and thief—
    Fause tongue, ye lee'd !
Variation in case of a man :
First I ca'd him honest man—
    'Twas true, indeed ;
Syne I ca'd him thief's face
    Fause tongue, ye lee'd !
The words were otherwise varied, according to the nature of the slander. Our informant has conversed with aged people who had witnessed this strange act of penance at a country church, not more than a century ago.

When heather-bells grow cockle-shells,
The miller and the priest will forget themsels.
That is, their own interests ; intimating that, till some natural impossibility shall take place, the miller will not neglect to exact his multure, nor the priest his tithes. Perhaps it might have been well for the author of the distich to bear in mind a national proverb, " It's ill shooting at craws and clergy."

The grandsire buys, the father biggs,
The son sells, and the grandson thigs.*
  i.e. begs. To thig is not precisely synonymous with " to beg," but rather signifies what is expressed in English by the phrase genteel begging.

TUNEThe Birks of Abergeldy.
Some say the deil's dead, the deil's dead, the deil's dead ;
Some say the deil's dead, and buried in Kirkaldy !
Some say he's risen again, he's risen again, he's risen again ;
Some say he's risen again, and danced the Highland laddie !

Wallace wight, upon a night,
    Coost in a stack o' bere,
And ere the morn at fair daylight
    He drackit draff his mear.
Leyden, in the notes to the Complaynt of Scotland, speaks of rhyming distichs on Wallace, some serious, and some ludicrous. He cites the above as a specimen, with a different reading of the last line—
" 'Twas a' draff to his mare."

There was an auld man stood on a stane,
Awa' i' the craft, his leefu' lane,
And cried on his bonnie sleek kye to come hame.
" Kitty my mailly, and Kitty her mother,
Kitty my doo, and Kitty Billswither,
Ranglety, Spanglety, Crook, and Cowdry !"
And these were the names o' the auld man's kye.*
  M'Taggart's Gallovidian Encyclopædia.

God bless King William and Queen Mary,
Lord Strathmore and the Earl o' Airly,
The Laird o' Banff and Little Charlie.
At a meeting, in Stirling Castle, of some of the principal leaders of the Jacobite faction previous to the 1715, an awkward dispute arose, when dinner was on the table, as to who should say the grace. The person who sat at the head of the table pitched upon his next neighbour, who, in his turn, deputed the honour to him who sat next again, and so on, till every one present declined the office. In this dilemma, the Earl of Airly arose, and signified to the company that he was sure that his footman was competent for the task. The man was accordingly called, and ordered to ask a blessing, when, as if to confound all party-spirit in their breasts, he produced this poetical and most liberal benediction, which was highly applauded by all present.

This is siller Saturday,
    The morn's the resting day ;
Monanday up and till't again,
    And Tyesday push away.

—A favourite rhyme amongst the working-classes in the west.

They that wash on Monanday,
    Hae a' the week to dry ;
They that wash on Tyesday,
    Are no far by.

They that wash on Wednesday,
    Get their claes clean ;
They that wash on Thursday,
    Are no sair to mean.†

They that wash on Friday,
    Washes for need ;
And they that wash on Saturday,
    Are dirty daws indeed.

  Have no occasion to complain.

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      Boys at school, who have no great aptitude for arithmetic, thus express their feelings on the subject :—
Multiplication is a vexation,
    Division is as bad ;
The Rule of Three vexes me,
    And Fractions put me mad.

      It is customary for youngsters at school to scribble their names under the boards of their books, in the following fashion :—
James Paterson, his book :
And if it happen for to tyne,*
This writ will show that it is mine.
  Be lost.

The editor has seen this couplet on an old Bible, in a handwriting of the early part of the seventeenth century. Another favourite book-inscription is—
[Andrew Thomson] is my name,
    Scotland is my nation ;
[Dunfermline] is my dwelling-place,
    A pleasant habitation.
A third, of very awful import, is here given as copied from the blank page of a manuscript book of accounts, which belonged to Hew Love, portioner of John's Hill, Renfrewshire, between 1661 and 1665 :
" This beuk is mine, and if ye steal it away,
  Remember at the Latter Day,
  When our Lord sall come and say,
  Whare is the beuk ye staw away ?"
      The following inscription appears on a book of receipts which belonged to the lady of Sir David Threipland of Fingask, a noted partisan of the Stuart family :—
" This book is mine, if ye wolld know,
  And letters two I will you show :
  The first is K, ane letter bright,
  The other S in all men's sight :
  If ye can joyn them cunninly,
  To know my name ye may then try ;
  But if ye chance to spell amiss,
  Looke downe be loe, and ther it is.
Kattrin Smyth.
Begowne the first of June,
Lady Threipland was the only child of Smith of Burnhill, near Perth. Her reception of " James the 8th" at Fingask Castle, on his way from Peterhead, where he had landed, to Perth, January 7, 1716, is remembered in many snatches of old songs, still popular in the Carse of Gowrie : such as—
" When our gude king cam to the Carse,
      To see Sir David's lady,
  There was a cod dressed up wi' sauce,
      Took a hunder pounds to mak it ready."

Deil ride to Turin on ye,
For a lade o' sclates !
This may have originated in the circumstance of the church of St Vigean's, Arbroath, having been covered with slates, which the poor people thereabouts are said to have been compelled by their spiritual superiors to bring upon their backs, from the distant quarry of Turin, near Forfar.

As I gaed ower by Glenap,
    I met wi' an aged woman ;
She bad me cheer up my heart,
    For the best o' my days were comin !
Glenap is an out-of-the-world vale amidst the wilds forming the confines of Ayrshire and Wigtonshire. Mr Lockhart says that the apothegm was a favourite with Burns.

Tobacco and tobacco reek,
When I am weel they mak me sick ;
Tobacco and tobacco reek,
They mak me weel when I am sick.

Fortune will be Fortune still,
Let the weather blaw as it will ;
For the laddie has his leave, and the lassie has her ring,
And there's mony a merry heart 'neath a mournin string.

This is the tree that never grew,
This is the bird that never flew ;
This is the bell that never rang,
And this the drunken sawmon.

Duke Hamilton and Brandon,
Earl Chatelerault and Arran,
The Laird o' Peneil,
The Gudeman o' Draffan.
—This is popular in Clydesdale. The gradation downwards is amusing, but is not unexampled in popular ideas as to our ancient nobility, for the Duke of Gordon was said to have for his last title " Gudeman o' the Bog" (that is, the house of Bog-an-Gight), and the Earl of Morton was in like manner called " Gudeman o' Aberdour." Draffan is Craignethan Castle, at one time the property of the Bastard of Arran, celebrated in Scottish history.

Put your hand in the creel,
And draw an adder or an eel.

My daughter's my daughter as lang's she's in life,
But my son's but my son till he gets a wife.

I never choose to lead,
    But follow in the throng ;
And when I never sing at all,
    I never sing wrong.

I sat wi' my love and I drank wi' my love,
    And my love she gave me licht ;
I'll give any man a pint o' wine,
    That's read my riddle richt.
—Solution : I sat in a chair made of my mistress's bones, drank out of her skull, and was lighted by a candle made of the substance of her body.

There stands a tree at our house-end,
It's a' clad ower wi' leather bend ;
It'll fecht a bull, it'll fecht a bear,
It'll fecht a thousand men o' weir (war).

There was a man o' Adam's race,
He had a certain dwallin'-place ;
It was neither in heeven, earth, nor hell—
Tell me where this man did dwell !
—Jonah, in the whale's belly.

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There was a man made a thing,
And he that made it did it bring ;
But he 'twas made for did not know
Whether 'twas a thing or no.
—A coffin.

Down in yon ha' I heard a cock craw,
A dead man seeking a drink.

Mouthed like the mill-door, and luggit like the cat ;
Though ye guessed a' day, ye'd no guess that !
—A large broth-pot of the old construction.

Mouth o' horn and beard o' leather ;
Ye'll no guess that though ye were hanged in a tether.
—A cock.

Bonnie Kitty Brannie, she stands at the wa',
Gie her little, gie her muckle, she licks up a';
Gie her stanes, she'll eat them—but water, she'll dee ;
Come tell this bonnie riddleum to me.
—The fire.

Hair without, and hair within,
A' hair and nae skin.
—A hair-rope.

Down i' yon meadow
    There was a boat,
And in that boat
    The king's son sat.

I'm aye tellin ye,
    And ye're never kennin,
Hoo they ca' the king's son,
    In yon boat sailin.

—A particular emphasis on the word "hoo " denotes to the discerning that the name of the king's son is Hoo, or Hugh.

As I lookit ower my window at ten o'clock at nicht,
       I saw the dead carryin the leevin.
—A ship sailing.

As I gaed ower Bottle-brig,
    Bottle-brig brak ;
Though ye guess a' day,
    Ye winna guess that.
—The ice. In Lanarkshire alone would this enigma have its full effect, the words Bottle-brig being liable to be confounded with Bothwell-Bridge, there popularly called Boddle Brig.

As I gaed to Falkland to a feast,
I met wi' an ugly beast—
Ten tails, a hunder nails,
And no a fit but ane.
—A ship.

I saw a peacock with a fiery tail,
I saw a blazing comet pour down hail,
I saw a cloud wrapt with ivy round,
I saw an oak creeping on the ground,
I saw a pismire swallow up a whale,
I saw the sea brimful of ale,
I saw a Venice glass fifteen feet deep,
I saw a well full of men's tears that weep,
I saw wet eyes all of a flaming fire,
I saw a horse bigger than the moon and higher,
I saw the sun even at midnight—
I saw the man who saw this dreadful sight.


      A prophecy of Thomas the Rhymer respecting Drumlanrig Castle, in Drumfriesshire :—
When the Park burns rins
    Where never men saw,
The house o' the Hassock
    Is near a fa'.

      The following is from a manuscript of the seventeenth century :—
The brig o' Turray *
Is half way frae Aberdeen to Elgin i' Murray.
  The popular pronunciation of Turreff.

In Lanarkshire—
The worthy Watsons,
The gentle Neilsons,
The jingling Jardines,
The muckle-backit Hendersons,
The fause Dicksons ;
Ae Brown is enow in a toun ;
Ae Paterson in a parochine, a parochine—
            They brak a'.

Cauld kail in Comistane,
And crowdie in Quothquan,
Singit sweens in Symington,
And brose in Pettinain.
The assy pets o' Fogarton,
And puddings o' Peneil,
Black folk o' Douglas
Drinks wi' the de'il.

      The war-cry of the inhabitants of Hawick is introduced in a conspicuous manner in a poem, produced a few years ago by one of them, on the occasion of a riding of their marches, and of which the following are the first and burden verses :—
England must'ring all her forces,
Train'd to war both men and horses ;
March'd an army under Surrey,
Threat'ning Scotia's rights to bury.

    Terry Buss and Terry Oden,
    Sons of heroes slain at Flodden
    Imitating border bowmen,
    Aye defend your rights and common.

Of the marriages in May,
The bairns die o' decay.
      There is a proverb connected with this superstition—" May birds are aye cheeping."
A spin'le o' bourtree,
    And a whorl o' caumstane,
Put it on the house tap,
    And it will spin its lane.

March whisker
Was ne'er a gude fisher—
Signifying that a blustering March is unfavourable to the angler, although good for the farmer.
Nae weather's ill,
An the wind be still.
An air* winter,
A sair winter.

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On winds—

East and wast,
The sign o' a blast ;
North and south,
The sign o' drouth.
Monie rains, monie rowans ;
Monie rowans, monie yewns.*
  Light grain.

In Clydesdale, they observe that much rain brings a great show of rowans (the berries of the mountain ash), which they hold to denote a deficient harvest.
About the moon there is a brugh,
The weather will be cauld and rough.
The halo seen round the moon, in consequence of the humidity of the atmosphere, is called in Scotland a brugh, from the same root (a circle) from which came the appellation first conferred on round hill forts, and subsequently on the towns which rose near them (burghs or brughs).

On the first o' March,
The craws begin to search.
It is the common belief that crows pair, and commence building their nests, on the 1st of March.
Winter thunder,
Summer's wonder.

A nursery song:—
When I was a wee thing,
    'Bout six or seven year auld,
I had no worth a petticoat,
    To keep me frae the cauld.

Then I went to Edinburgh,
    To bonny burrows toun,
And there I got a petticoat,
    A kirtle, and a goun.

As I came hame again,
    I thocht I wad big a kirk,
And a' the fouls o' the air
    Wad help me to work.

The herring wi' her lang neb,
    She moupit me the stanes ;
The doo, wi' her rough legs,
    She led me them hame.

The gled he was a wily thief,
    He rackled up the wa' ;
The pyot was a curst thief,
    She dang doun a'.

The hair cam hirpling ower the knowe,
    To ring the morning bell ;
The hurcheon she came after,
    And said she wad do't hersel.

The herring was the high priest,
    The salmon was the clerk,
The howlet red the order—
    They held a bonny wark.

    The Red Bull of Norroway, probably the same with the Black Bull of Norroway, alluded to in the Complaynt of Scotland, 1549, is here given, in fact, but not in language, as related in Dumfriesshire :—
      Once upon a time there lived a king who had three daughters—the two eldest were proud and ugly, but the youngest was the gentlest and most beautiful creature ever seen, and the pride not only of her father and mother, but of all in the land. As it fell out, the three princesses were talking one night of whom they would marry. " I will have no one lower than a king," said the eldest princess ; the second would take a prince, or a great duke even. " Pho, pho," said the youngest, laughing, " you are both so proud ; now, I would be content with ' The Red Bull o' Norroway.' " Well, they thought no more of the matter till the next morning, when, as they sat at breakfast, they heard the most dreadful bellowing at the door, and what should it be but the Red Bull come for his bride. You may be sure they were all terribly frightened at this, for the Red Bull was one of the most horrible creatures ever seen in the world. And the king and queen did not know how to save their daughter. At last they determined to send him off with the old hen-wife. So they put her on his back, and away he went with her till he came to a great black forest, when, throwing her down, he returned roaring louder and more frightfully than ever ; they then sent, one by one, all the servants, then the two eldest princesses, but not one of them met with any better treatment than the old hen-wife, and at last they were forced to send their youngest and favourite child.
      On travelled the lady and the bull through many dreadful forests and lonely wastes, till they came at last to a noble castle, where a large company was assembled. The lord of the castle pressed them to stay, though much he wondered at the lovely princess and her strange companion. When they went in among the company, the princess espied a pin sticking in the bull's hide, which she pulled out, and to the surprise of all, there appeared, not a frightful wild beast, but one of the most beautiful princes ever beheld. You may believe how delighted the princess was to see him fall at her feet, and thank her for breaking his cruel enchantment. There was great rejoicings in the castle at this ; but, alas ! at that moment he suddenly disappeared, and though every place was sought, he was nowhere to be found. The princess, however, determined to seek through all the world for him, and many weary ways she went, but nothing could she hear of her lover. Travelling once through a dark wood, she lost her way, and as night was coming on, she thought she must now certainly die of cold and hunger ; but seeing a light through the trees, she went on till she came to a little hut where an old woman lived, who took her in, and gave her both food and shelter. In the morning, the old wifie gave her three nuts, that she was not to break till her heart was like to break, " and ower again like to break ;" so, showing her the way, she bade God speed her, and the princess once more set out on her wearisome journey.
      She had not gone far till a company of lords and ladies rode past her, all talking merrily of the fine doings they expected at the Duke o' Norroway's wedding. Then she came up to a number of people carrying all sorts of fine things, and they, too, were going to the duke's wedding. At last she came to a castle, where nothing was to be seen but cooks and bakers, some running one way and some another, and all so busy, they did not know what to do first. Whilst she was looking at all this to-do, she heard a noise of hunters behind her, and some one cried out, make way for the Duke o' Norroway, and who should ride past but the prince and a beautiful lady. You may be sure her heart was now " like to break, and ower again like to break" at this sad sight, so she broke one of the nuts, and out came a wee wifie carding. The princess then went into the castle, and asked to see the lady ; who no sooner saw the wee wifie so hard at work, than she offered the princess any thing in her castle for it. " I will give it to you," said she, " only on condition that you put off for one day your marriage with the Duke o' Norroway, and that I may go into his room alone to-night." So anxious was the lady for the nut, that she consented. And when dark night was come, and the duke fast asleep, the princess was put alone into his chamber. Sitting down by his bedside, she began singing—
" Far hae I sought ye, near am I brought to ye,
  Dear Duke o' Norroway, will ye no turn and speak to me ?"
      Though she sung this over and over again, the   p.76 /   duke never wakened, and in the morning the princess had to leave him without his knowing she had ever been there. She then broke the second nut, and out came a wee wifie spinning, which so delighted the lady, that she readily agreed to put off her marriage another day for it ; but the princess came no better speed the second night than the first ; and almost in despair she broke the last nut, which contained a wee wifie reeling, and on the same condition as before the lady got possession of it. When the duke was dressing in the morning, his man asked him what the strange singing and moaning that had been heard in his room for two nights meant. " I heard nothing," said the duke ; " it could only have been your fancy." " Take no sleeping-draught to-night, and be sure to lay aside your pillow of heaviness," said the man, " and you also will hear what for two nights has kept me awake." The duke did so, and the princess coming in, sat down sighing at his bedside, thinking this the last time she might ever see him. The duke started up when he heard the voice of his dearly loved princess ; and with many endearing expressions of surprise and joy, explained to her that he had long been in the power of an enchantress, whose spells over him were now happily ended by their once again meeting. The princess, happy to be the instrument of his second deliverance, consented to marry him ; and the enchantress, who fled that country, afraid of the duke's anger, has never since been heard of. All was again hurry and preparation in the castle ; and the marriage which now took place, at once ended the adventures of the Red Bull o' Norroway and the wanderings of the king's daughter.

      The perusal of this story recalls to the mind of a correspondent the following rhyme, popular in his youthful days in Dumfriesshire :—
A bannock, a bannock o' barley meal,
Cam dancing down by Davie's shiel ;
Out cam Davie and a' his lads,
And they dang a' the bannock i' blads.

      In the primitive parish of Deerness, in Orkney, it was customary, about forty years ago, for old and young of the common class of people to assemble in a great band upon the evening of the last day of the year, and proceed upon a round of visits throughout the district. At every house they knocked at the door, and on being admitted, commenced singing, to a tune of its own, a song appropriate to the occasion, which has been placed before me in a form not the most satisfactory to an antiquary, but the best that circumstances admitted of, namely, with a number of verses composed as much from imagination as from memory, to make out something like the whole piece. These are marked with a dagger (†). It is obvious that " Queen Mary" is a corruption for the name of the blessed Virgin.

This night it is gude New'r E'en's night,
    We're a' here Queen Mary's men ;
And we're come here to crave our right,
    And that's before our lady.

The very first thing which we do crave,
    We're a' here Queen Mary's men ;
A bonny white candle we must have,
    And that's before our lady.

Gudewife, gae to your butter ark,
And weigh us here ten mark.

Ten mark, ten pund,
Look that ye grip weel to the grund.*

Gudewife, gae to your geelin vat,
And fetch us here a skeel o' that.

Gang to your amrie, gin ye please,
And bring frae there a yowe-milk cheese.

And syne bring here a sharpin stane,
We'll sharp our whittles ilka ane.

Ye'll cut the cheese, and eke the round,
But aye take care ye cutna your thoom.

Gae fill the three pint cog o' ale,
The maut maun be aboon the meal.

We houp your ale is stark and stout,
For men to drink the auld year out.

Ye ken the weather's snaw and sleet,
Stir up the fire to warm our feet.

Our shoon's made o' mare's skin,
Come open the door, and let's in.

  In stooping into a deep ark, or chest, there is of course a danger of falling in, unless the feet be kept firm to the ground.

The inner door being opened, a tremendous rush took place towards the interior. The inmates furnished a long table with all sorts of homely fare, and a hearty feast took place, followed by copious libations of ale, charged with all sorts of good wishes. The party would then proceed to the next house, where a similar scene would be enacted ; heaven knows how they contrived to take so many suppers in one evening. No slight could be more keenly felt by a Deerness farmer than to have his house passed over unvisited by the New-Year singers.

      Prior to the use of the yarn winnle blades, women counted the thread produced on their spinning wheels by winding it between their left hand and elbow, saying, as the process went on—" There's ane—there's no ane—there's ane a' out. There's twa—there's no twa—there's twa a' out"—and so on to a score.

      The Covenanter's grace :—

Some hae meat that canna eat,
    And some wad eat that want it ;
But we hae meat, and we can eat,
    For which the Lord be thankit !
When Burns dined with the Earl of Selkirk, at St Mary's Isle, he repeated these lines, which have been generally considered as his own. In reality, he must have only given them from memory, for a correspondent remembers their being popular in the south-western province of Scotland before the days of Burns. They were always called the Covenanter's Grace.

      An enigma—

Ha ! Master above a Master,
Rise from your fortune—
Step to your shintilews—
The grey cat o' grapus
Is up the steps o' fundus
Wi' montapus on her tail—
If there come na help out o' founto-clear,
We're gane, and a' that's here.
      Explanation.—Master of the whole house, rise from your bed ; step to your breeches ; the grey cat is up the stair with fire on her tail : if there comes not help out of the well, we are gone, and all that are here.


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