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THE NEW YORK JOURNAL
in Illustrated Literary Periodical.
AUGUST, 185 4.
castles of the Douglasses in Galloway. The ap- were an endless variety of armor and weapons, TO ABBOTSFORD AND ITS VICINITY. proach-which is very short, as the high road runs amongst them Rob Roy's gun, with his initials,
through the grounds in rather close propinquity to R. M. C., around the touch-hole; Hofer's blunderIT
was on a bright calm morning towards the close the house—is by a broad trellised walk, oversha- buss ; the pistols taken from Bounaparte's carriage
of September that we started from the inn at dowed with roses and honeysuckles ; on one side at Waterloo ; a beautiful sword which Charles Y. Galashiels, where we had arrived at a late hour on
was a screen of open gothic arches filled with invisi- presented to Montrose ; together with thumb-screws the preceding evening, to visit Abbotsford and some ble network, through which we caught delightful and other instruments of torture, the dark memoof the adjacent scenes, which the genius of the glimpses of a garden with flower-beds, turrets, rials of days of savage cruelty, we trust gone by for mighty minstrel had invested with sufficient interest porches leading into avenues of rosaries, and to our minds to render them the chief object, upon
bounded by noble forest trees.
We came at once
Beyond this armory is the dining-room, with a that occasion, of our northern tour.
upon the house, the external appearance of which low carved roof, a low bow window, and an eleOne of our party (we were four in number, and utterly defies description. At either end rises a tall vated dais. Its walls were hung in crimson, and on foot-the true mode of enjoying such an excur-tower
, but each totally different from the other ; and thickly covered with pictures, among which were sion) was well acquainted with the locality of
the entire front is nothing but an assemblage of the Duke of Monmouth, by Lely; a portrait of
every spot with which the slightest interest was asso
gables, parapets, eaves, indentations, water-spouts Hogarth, by himself; and a picture of the head of ciated ; and was, moreover, admirably qualified to with strange droll faces, painted windows, Eliza- Mary Queen of Scots-said to have been painted act as cicerone by an unbounded enthusiasm for bethan chimneys; all apparently flung together in the day after her execution—with an appalling everything connected, however remotely, with the the very wantonness of irregularity, and yet pro- ghastliness of countenance, the remembrance of person, the genius, or the memory of the illustrious ducing, as we all agreed, a far more pleasing effect which for days afterwards was like that of an un
than poet. We had not, therefore, proceeded far before
any sample of architectural propriety, whether
pleasant dream. he stopped us by exclaiming : :-" There are the ancient or modern, that we had ever seen.
A narrow passage of sculptured stone conducted woods and house of Abbotsford ; and there, behind A noble doorway—the fac-simile, as our well- us from this apartment to a delicious breakfastthem, are the Eildon hills! There you see Gala- informed guide apprised us, of the ancient royal room, with shelves full of books at one end, and water chafing as it joins the Tweed. And yonder palace of Linlithgow, and ornamented with stupen- the other wails well covered with beautiful draware the braes of Yarrow, and vale of Ettrick !" It dous antlers-admitted us into the lofty hall; the ings in water-color, by Turner. Over the chimwas impossible not to catch some portion of the impression made upon entering which was such as ney-piece was an oil painting of a castle overhangenthusiasm with which he thus uttered names that never could be forgotten. There are but two win- ing the sea, which our cicerone affirmed to be the we had often heard and read of with emotion, espe- dows, and these, although lofty, being altogether of Wolf's crag. A number of curious-looking cabicially as the beautiful scenery to which they be- painted glass, every pane deep dyed with gorgeous nets formed the most remarkable feature in the longed was now spread in bright reality before us, armorial bearings, the sudden contrast between the furniture of this apartment; but its chief charm and we learned to distinguish each amid the calm less than “ dim religious light” which they admitted,
was in the lovely prospect from the windows, which light shed around them from a cloudless autumn and the glare of day from which we had entered,
on one side overlook the Tweed, and give a view of sky.
together with the thought of whose roof-tree it was the Yarrow and of Ettrick upon the other. While Abbotsford is situated about two miles from beneath which we stood, and whose the spirit that standing herc, looking out upon the glad water Galashiels, between that town and Selkirk. The had called into existence the strange beauty with sparkling in the sunshine, with the overhanging house occupies the crest of the last of a broken which we rather felt than saw ourselves to be sur- woods now putting on the golden livery of autumn, series of hills descending from the Eildons to the rounded, was oppressive - almost overpowering. and thinking how often must the mighty minstrel's Tweed, whose silver stream it overhangs. The Not a word was spoken for some moments, until eye and mind have drunk in poetic inspiration as he grounds are richly wooded, and diversified with an our eyes became accustomed to the sombre coloring endless variety of " bushy dells and alleys green;" of the apartment, which we then perceived to be gazed upon the same bright scene, one of our party
repeated, in a low tone of deep feeling, the lines while through all, the river,
about forty feet in height, the walls being of dark from the “ Lay of the Last Minstrel,” which are in
richly-carved oak, and the roof a series of pointed “Wandering at its own sweet will,"
some respects so touchingly applicable to the closing arches, from the centre of each of which hung a
scenes of the life of their gifted author :gives its exquisite finish to a picture such as needs richly emblazoned shield. Around the cornice were no association whatsoever, nothing but its own also a number of similar shields. Our cicerone
“ Still as I view each well-known scene, intrinsic loveliness, to leave its image indelibly im- pointed out amongst them the bloody heart of
Think what is now, and what hath been, pressed upon the mind. Douglas, and the royal lion of Scotland. The floor
Seerns as to me of all bereft, We soon arrived at the entrance gate, a lofty arch of the splendid hall is paved with black and white Sole friends thy woods and streams were left,
And thus I love them better still, in an embattled wall; and here our attention was marble, brought, we were told, from the Hebrides ;
Even in extremity of ill. directed by our enthusiastic friend to the first and magnificent suits of armor, with a profusion of
By Yarrow's stream still let me stray, instance of Sir Walter's anxiety to accumulate swords of every variety, occupy the niches, or are
Though none should guide my feeble way, around his residence as many relics as possible of suspended on the walls.
Still feel the breeze down Ettrick break, the olden time, in the rusty chains and rings, called From the hall we were shown into a narrow
Although it chill my withered cheek;
Still lay my head by Teviot stone, “jougs," to which the bells were attached, and vaulted apartment running across the entire house,
Though there, forgotten and alone, which had been brought from one of the anciont with an emblazoned window at either end. Here The Bard may draw his parting groan."
and a gallery running round three sides of the room, and reached by a hanging stair at one corner, also contained some books. There were but two portraits, those of Claverhouse and Rob Roy. In one corner was a little closet opening into the gardens, forming the lower compartment of one of the towers, in the upper part of which was a private staircase accessible from the gallery. This was the last portion of the mansion which we were permitted to explore ; and after a hurried ramble through the grounds -where exquisite walks, with innumerable seats and arbors, commanding views of gleamy lakes and most picturesque and lovely waterfalls, told eloquently of the matchless taste that had there found recreation from its toil—we bid a long adieu to Abbotsford.
Our next visit was to Melrose Abbey, which,
" Like some tall rock with lichens gray," rose before us as we turned down a narrow street of the little town of Melrose. It is, in truth, perhaps the very loveliest pile of monastic ruins that the eye can see or the imagination conceive. The windows, and especially the glorious east window
with all its elaborate tracery-upon A B BOTSFORD,
the repairs of which, (as of the entire
building,) conducted under his immeEngraved expressly for the New York Journal.
diate auspices, we were told that Sir
Walter Scott had bestowed the utmost The windows were open ; it was the very season, , of richly-carved oak, as are also the bookcases care—are almost unrivalled, altogether unsurpassed but a few days from the anniversary, of his death ; which reach high up the walls. The books were as specimens of Gothic architecture. Under the the weather now, as it had been then, was warm elegantly bound, amounting, we are told, in number east window we were shown the grave of the and sunny; the gentle murmur of the river was to about twenty thousand volumes, all arranged wizard Michael Scott, immortalized in the " Lay of audible, as we are told in his biography it was according to their subjects. Amongst them the Last Minstrel ;” and, close by it, a small flat when his weeping sons and daughters knelt around were presentation copies from almost every stone, about a foot square, under which our guide his bed just as the spirit was departing; and as living author in the world. Our attention was informed us lies the heart of Wallace. that solemn scene rose vividly before the excited arrested in particular by a “Montfaucon," in fifteen In one of the naves are seven niches, exquisitely imagination, there came with it, perhaps more folio volumes, with the royal arms emblazoned on ornamented with sculptured foliage, and reminding deeply than had ever before been experienced, a the binding, the gift of king George IV. There us of the lines in the “ Lay of the Last Minstrel :" feeling of the mutability, the nothingness, of all were cases opposite the fireplace, wired and locked,
“Spreading herbs and flowerets bright that earthly fame ou rank or riches can bestow. one containing books and Mss. relating to the insur- Glistened with the dew of night : The bright scene was there unchanged, but where rections of 1715 and 1745; and another, treatises Nor herb nor doweret glistened there
But was carved in the cloister arches as fair." was he who gave the charm to its brightness—who on magic and diablerie, said to be of extreme rarity had rendered it almost unrivalled in its interest by and value. In one corner stood a small silver urn Each glance at the lovely east window recalled in any similar locality in the world!
upon a porphyry stand, upon which we could not like manner the stanzas from the same poem : On passing from this room, which we left most but look with intensely mournful interest; it was
“The moon on the east oriel shone, reluctantly, we came into a green-house with an old filled with human bones, and bore the inscription, Through slender shafts of shapely stone, fountain playing before itone that had formerly “Given by George Gordon, lord Byron, to sir By foliaged tracerr combined ;
Thou wouldst have thought some faery's hand, stood by the cross of Edinburgh, and had been made Walter Scott, bart.” There was but one bust-a
'Twixt poplars straight the osier wand, to flow with wine at the coronations of the Stuarts. Shakspeare; and one picture--Sir Walter's eldest
In many a freakish knot had twined ; This brought us into the drawing-room, a large and son in hussar uniform, in the apartment.
Then framed a spell when the work was done, very handsome apartment, elegantly furnished with Connected with this noble library, and facing the
And changed the willow wreaths to stone." ancient ebony, crimson silk hangings, mirrors, and south, is a small room, the most interesting of all— The figures and heads which abound throughout the portraits-amongst the latter, a n ble portrait of the retreat of the poet—where many of the most ruin are some of them very beautiful, and others Dryden, one of Peter Lely's best After pausing admired productions of his genius were conceived singularly grotesque. There is a cripple on the here for some minutes, we pass d into the largest and written. It contained no furniture, except a back of a blind man, in which the pain of the former room of all, the library-a moct magnificent apart- small writing-table in the centre, an arm-chair cov- and the sinking of the latter beneath his unwieldy ment, about fifty feet in length by thirty in width, ered with black leather, and one chair for a single burthen are expressed in stone as we do not often with a projection in the centre, opposite the fire privileged visitor. On either side of the fireplace see anything of the kind in painting. Close to the place, containing a large bow window. The roof is were shelves with a few volumes, chiefly folios south window is a massive-looking figure peering