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HISTORY OF SCOTLAND.
Description of the Country-Laws, Religion, and
Character of the Scots.
tiently called Caledonia, now Scotland, lies between the 54th and 59th degree of worth latitude, and the 1st and 7th of west longitude. The Tweed on the eastern coast, and the Solway Firth on the west, determine the limits between England and Scotland.
The German ocean, with the Deucaledonian and the Irish seas, flow around its eastern, northern, and western coasts. The isles of Orkney and Shetland lie contiguous to its northern extremity, the Hebrides are adjacent to its north-west shores, and Man is seen from the south-west coast.
The climate of Scotland is such as might be expected in a latitude so remote, and a country so mountainous. In the eastern parts there is not so much humidity as in England, owing to the mountains on the west, which arrest the vapours from the Atlantic, The western countries, on the other hand, are deluged with rain, an additional obstacle to the progress of agriculture. Even the winter is more distinguishable by the abundance of snow, than by the intensity of frost; but in summer, the heat of the sun is reflected with great power in the narrow vales VOL. XXI,
between the mountains, so as sometimes to occasion a phenomenon of glittering particles that seem to swim before the
eye. The face of the country is in general moun. tainous, to the extent perhaps of two-thirds, whence the population is of necessity slender in comparison with the admeasurement. In the south-west, the antient province of Galloway presents an assemblage of hills, which seldom describe any uniform chain from the bay of Glenluce, which extends towards Loch Ryan, and thence in a N. E. direction to Loch Doon, the source of the river Doon, which joins the sea near Ayr. Other ridges run in various directions, generally north and south, according to the course of the rivers, till we arrive at the Nith, near which is Cruffel, a detached summit of considerable height. But the chief elevation of this part of Scotland is that inetalliferous ridge in its very centre, called Lead-Ilills, &c. whence many rivers descend in all directions to
The chief summit of that ridge is Harts fell. Not far to the north is Tinto, a remarkable solitary mountain, and Queensberry Hill, about the same elevation. Berwick Law, and the romantic summits in the neighbourhood of Edin, burgh, close the list of the southern hills.
On passing the Forth, appears the range of Ochill kills. The Grampians may be considered as a grand frontier chain, extending from Loch Lomond to Stonehave, and forming the southern boundary of the Highlands, though four or five counties on the north-east of that chain, have in their eastern and northern parts the name and advantages of Lowlands.
The transition to the Grampians is gradual, consisting of the Sadley hills on the east, the Ochills in the middle, and Campsy bills on the west. To the Grampian chain belongs Ben Lomond, Ben Leddy, Benmore, Ben Lawres, (the chief suminit 4015 feet above the level of the sea ;) Shihallion, Ben Vorlich, and other less important elevations on the east; Mount Battock, in Kincardinshire, and Ben Cruachan in Argyleshire.
The highest mountain in Great Britain, is Ben Nevis, of 4350 feet ja height, not above one quarter of that of Mount Blanc. This mountain has not hitherto been explored by any mineralogist. On the north-east, it presents a precipice nearly perpendicular, and of prodigious height; by some accounts 1500 feet.
The view from the summit is grand, exhibiting most of the western Highlands from the Paps of Jura to the hills of Cullen in Skye: on the east it extends to Ben Lawres, in Perthshire, and the river Ness, a view of about eighty miles in extent. The superior half of the mountain is almost destitute of vegetation. The summit is flat, with a gentle declivity. Snow remains in the crevices throughout the year, but here are no Glacieres or other magnificent Alpine features.
It would be difficult to divide the remaining mountains into distinct lines or groupes, Near Fort Augustus stands the long mountain of Coriarok, over which a military road has been carried in a zig-zag direction. About thirty miles to the east rises the mountain Cairngorm, or the Blue Mountain, clothed with almost perpetual snow; as is Benibourd : inferior hills are without
number, Even the eastern parts have little of uniform Aatness, but are sweetly diversified with hill and dale.
'The forests of Scotland are very rare, it is long since the Sylva Caledonia has vanished. The whole county of Selkirk was formerly denominated Ettric Forest. There was a considerable forest in the west of Aberdeenshire, that of Mar, wbere still remains the forest of Abernethy. In the county of Sutherland was the forest of Sletadale, and in the vorth of the same county Parf forest. The county of Argyle contains Boachiltive forest on the north. Mention is made by late travellers of a royal forest near Loch-Ketterin, called Finglas, but for this there seems no authority. The forest of Athol, in the same county, does not appear liable to the same objection. Plantations are, however, very numerous throughout the country. The rich roughness of an English prospect, diversified with an abundance of wood, even in the hedge rows, is in Scotland rarely visible, whence the nudity of the country makes a strong impression on the stranger. But the laudable exertions of many of the nobility and gentry, who plant trees by millions, will soon remove this reproach. The maritime gales are noxious to such plantations; but experience and attention will devise some method of protecting the young plant.
The chief rivers in Scotland are, the Tay, the Clyde, and the Forth. The principal source of the Tay is the lake of the same name. Soon after this noble river issues from the lake, it is joined by several lesser streams; after passing Perth, where it is navigable, it flows by Dundee, below