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Rather than give up his pretended rights to the famous midden-stead, he obstinately refused all supply from the poors funds of his native parish; and in order that he might retain what he conceived would be the means of bringing him once more within the walls of the Parliament House, wandered about from place to place, until at last, from his habits of life, he became such a nuisance, that, disowned by every relation,and shut out from every house, it was found necessary to convey him to the common prison, which he quitted only for that asylum " where the wicked cease from troubling, and where the weary are at rest."—At Eildon Hall, Katherine, the infant daughter of Leaver Lcgge, Esq.—15. At Libberton, Margaret Manson, spouse of the Rev. Mr James Simpson, minister of the Associate Congregation, Potter-row, Edinburgh—21. Mr John Hatchet, senior, of the White Horse

Cellar, Piccadilly, London, aged 62 23.

At Topsham, aged 78, Captain Carter, R. \. With the exception of Admiral Schank, he was the only surviving officer who went to the North Cape of Lapland, to observe the transit of Venus, in 1768, in the Emerald, commanded by Sir Charles Douglas, of which the deceased was then first lieutenant. —At Avignon, Colin Macdonald Buchanan,

younger of Drummakil 2+. At Liverpool,

aged 81, Mr John Gore 25. At Fraserburgh, Mr George Daniel, writer.—26. After a lingering and painful illness, Mr Rob.

Wilson, merchant, Leith At Perth, the

Rev. James Scott, late senior minister of Perth, at the advanced age of 85.—28. At Gartur, John Graham, Esq.—29. At Havre, Alexander, second son of William Oliver, Esq. younger of Dinlabyre—30. At his mother's house, 65, Prince's Street, Edinburgh, James George Mackinlay, student

of medicine, aged 20 At Burntsticld Links,

Edinburgh, Mrs Margaret Finlay, widow of the late James Bell, Esq. Pinglen, Campsie.—At his house in Beaumont Place, Edinburgh, Capt. Henry Bevan, retired adjutant of the Dumfries-shire militia, aged

52 years At Edinburgh, the infant son of

William Erskine, Esq At Roxburgh

Place, Edinburgh, Mrs John Gardner— At Berwick-upon-Tweed, Mrs Barbara Hodgson, aged 88, relict of the late Dr Henry Hodgson, formerly Mayor of that town.

Mag 1. At Lorn, Furnace House, Argyleshire, Mary Harrison, in her 36th year, wife of James Park Harrison, Esq. and eldest daughter of Matthew Harrison, Esq.

Ncwland Furnace, Lancashire At his

house, in Montague Street, London, John Crawford, Esq. late of Monorgan, in Perthshire In Cumberland Place, London, the

Hon. John Douglas The deceased was grandfather to the present Marquis of Abercorn; he was father to the Countess of Aberdeen, and son-in-law to the Karl of Harewood, having married the noble Earl's daughter, Lady Frances Lascelles, who died

last year—2. At his house, in the Admiralty, London, Rear-admiral Sir George Hope, K.C.B—3. At his father's house, in Howe Street, Edinburgh, Arthur Forrest, Esq—At Glasgow, Mr A. Ruthven, of the

Ship Bank there At Glasgow, Mr James

Russell, jun. grocer, High Street. Mr Russell has left the following donations :—To the poor of the Relief Chapel, Campbell Street, £200—Sabbath Evening Schools, £50—To the Royal Infirmary, £50—To the Lunatic Asylum, £50—To the poor of

his native parish, Falkirk, £50 A. At

Gortnagally, near Dungannon, John Woods, an industrious farmer, at the advanced age of 122 years. He lived a regular and sober life. His wife died about two years ago, aged 82 years. He was 42 years old the

day of her birth At Ramsay (Isle of Man)

aged Gl years, the Hon. Norris Moore, his Majesty's first deemster in the island.—5. At Dublin, in the 25th year of his age, on his way homewards from Jamaica, on account of bad health, Mr Archibald Robertson, only remaining son of George Robertson, Esq. Bower Lodge, Irvine At her

house, in Chapel Street, Mrs Alison Hay of Haystown, in the 90th year of her NF-- 7. At Chapclton, the infant daughter of Capt. Dune, late of the 92d regiment.—At Sheemess, at an advanced age, Mr Wyatt, ship-builder. H is death was occasioned by an anchor, weighing 46 cwu which he was trying to move, falling against his chest, and knocking him down, the Monday preceding.— At Edinburgh, Mrs Margaret Aitctuson, wife of Mr James Clarkson.— At Femie, Francis Balfour, Esq. of Femic. —At Campbeltown, Major Robert Elder

of Belloch Christian, youngest daughter

of William ilaig, Esq. of Dollarfield 8.

At Hill Street, Edinburgh, Colin Mackay, Esq.—At Edinburgh, in the 73d year of his age, Alexander Robertson, Esq. of Ettrickhall, late one of the keepers ot the records of Scotland—9. At Edinburgh, at the house of his son-in-law, the Rev. Dr Anderson, Thomas Brown, Esq. of Waterhead, aged 82—11. At Edinburgh, Mrs Rattray, wife of Lieut. Col. David Rattray, and only Daughter of General John Hamilton of Dalzell and Orbiston.—At Burdichouse Mains, Mr Alexander Peacock, architect,

aged 85 years 12. William Richardson,

cousin-german to the late William Richardson, Professor of Humanity in the I'niversity of Glasgow, aged 76.—At Glasgow, Mrs Loudoun, wife of Morchcad Loudoun,

Esq 13. At his house, Wester Dudding

ston, Robert Kay, architect, aged 78.—At his house in George Street, in the 73d year of his age, Mr William Scott, teacher of elocution and geography. Mr Scott was the father of elocution in this country, and for a period of upwards of forty years distinguished himself by his extensive usefulness in his profession, having also instructed in this elegant accomplishment a great proportion of our countrymen who hare risen to eminence in the senate, the pulpit, and at the bar. He is also well known as the author of several useful and popular elementary works on subjects connected with education, among others. Lessons on Reading and Speaking, of a Systemof Geography, and a Pronouncing Dictionary of the English Language, which has always been considered a work of high authority, and equally esteemed on both sides of the Tweed. In the private relations of life, he was distinguished for his benevolence and piety; and during the protracted period of his last illness, he displayed that fortitude and resignation, and even cheerfulness, which the consciousness of a well spent life, and the joyful anticipations of a happyfuturity, alone •an give.—At Edinburgh, Captain David Havan, 21st Foot, or Royal North British Fusiliers—It-. At Edinburgh, Mrs Arbuthnot, relict of Robert Arbuthnot, Esq.—At Leith, in the 20th year of her age, Agnes, youngest daughter of the late James Scarth,

Esq. merchant in Leith M. At Wilson

Park, Portobello, J. P. Donaldson, Esq. assistant-surgeon of the Fifeshire Militia, and

surgeon in Portobello 16. At Gaddesby,

near Leicester, Eliza, wife of LieutenantColonel Cheney, of the Scots Greys.—17.

At Glasgow, Mrs Taylor of Kirktonhill

At Edinburgh, Mr William Sawers, bookseller At Edinburgh, Elizabeth, the infant daughter of the Rev. C. H. Terrot, Albany Street—At Crossmont, Capt James

Menzies, Royal Perthshire Militia 18. At

Leeds, of a typhus fever, after an illness of ten days, in the 36th year of his age, Dr John Thomson, of this town, late of Halifax. His best eulogy will be found in the sentiments of deep and heartfelt regret which the sudden stroke has excited in the breasts of those who knew him. Warmly beloved by his friends, highly respected by the generous brethren of a liberal profession, universally esteemed, he is now universally lamented. Seldom has the hand of death blighted fairer prospects, or inflicted a severer wound. In Dr Thomson, a powerful, enlightened, and active mind was united with a kind and benevolent heart. He had the will, as well as the ability, to be and to do good. His talents were great, and he used them as the instruments of his virtues. As a physician, though but lately settled here, he was already rising into eminence; and if unwearied diligence in collecting the materials of medical knowledge, combined with great skill in the application of them, could have ensured success, he must have succeeded. To the practical duties of his profession, his attention was unwearied, and his patients will bear witness to that unaffected kindness of manner which always made his advice doubly acceptable; which led them to believe, that he took a personal rather than a professional interest in their welfare; that he was their friend

as well as their physician. And such indeed was the case; he considered his fellow men as friends and brethren, and valued his Christian even more than his medical profession. It was the first wish of his heart to do good himself, and to teach others to do good in every possible way: and deeming the mural still more dangerous than the natural maladies of man, he was proportionably anxious to minister to them also. As a firm believer in the'divine mission of Christ, he considered it a sacred duty to lend all the aid that he could in diffusing the knowledge of the gospel. A diligent and conscientious inquiry had led him to the peculiar views of religious truth which he entertained, and he therefore exerted himself with zeal in their diffusion; but his zeal was according to knowledge, and consequently without bigotry. For many of those who differed from him most widely, he always felt and expressed the highest regard, and where he dissented honestly on points of faith, could still unite with heart and hand, sincerely and cordially, in the spirit of charity. As a physician and a friend, a fellow-citizen and a fellow-Christian, he will be long and deeply regretted. May the sorrow excited by his sudden and premature death, lead to the earnest emulation of his good example! "It is the end of all men, and the living should lay it to heart." At Min

holm, near Langholm, in the prime of life, William Kier, Esq. conductor of improvements to his Grace the Duke of Buccleugh and CJuecnsberry, in the district of Eskdale. and late captain in the Dumfriesshire yeomanry cavalry At Limekilns,

Jean, daughter of the deceased James Reddie, Esq. late farmer, Purvishall, Fifeshire. —Charles Williamson, Esq. of M airfield, for many years a respectable tobacconist in

Kelso At Harperden, East Lothian, Mr

Peter Bairnsfather, farmer.—19. At Edinburgh, Mr Charles Hunter, eldest son of Lieutenant-general Hunter of Burnside — 21. In George Street, James, infant son of

John Mansfield, Esq At Thurso, Mrs

Margaret Leith, wife of Mr George Paterson, senior magistrate of that town 22. At

Ham Common, Surrey, Hannah, eldest daughter of the Right Hon. Sir John Sinclair of Ulbster, Bart—23. At Borrowstounness, Miss Margaret Padon. aged 73. —At Edinburgh, Mr Alexander Boyd, perfumer, Duke Street, aged 39 24 At

the house of Mr Alexander Allan, merchant, Leith, Mary, daughter of the late John Grant, Esq. of Kincardine O'Neil.—At Lanark, Mrs Jane Smith, spouse of Mr

John Lamb, writer in Lanark 25. At his

father's house, St John's Hill, in the 20th year of his age, after a lingering illness, Mr John Bruce, son of Mr William Bruce, late

banker, Edinburgh At Portobello, Mrs

Blackwood of Pitreavie.

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BLACKWOOD'S

EDINBURGH MAGAZINE.

No XVI.

JULY 1818.

Vol. III.

ESSAYS ON THE LAKE SCHOOL OF POETRY.

Nol.

Wobdsworth's White Doe of Rylstone.

The three great master-spirits of our day, in the poetical world, are Scott, Wordsworth, and Byron. But there never were minds more unlike to each other than theirs are, either in original conformation or in the course of life. It is great and enduring glory to this age, to have produced three Poets,—of perfectly original genius,—unallied to each other,—drinking inspiration from fountains far apart,—who have built up superb structures of the imagination, of distinct orders of architecture, —and who may indeed be said to rule, each by a legitimate sovereignty, over separate and powerful provinces in the kingdom of Mind. If we except the Elizabethan age, in which the poetical genius of the country was turned passionately to the drama, and which produced an unequalled constellation of great spirits, we believe that no other period of English literature could exhibit three such Poets as these,] standing in conspicuous elevation among a crowd of less potent, but enlightened and congenial Worthies. There is unquestionably an etherial flush of poetry over the face of this land. Poets think and feel for themselves, fearlessly and enthusiastically. There is something like inspiration in the works of them all. They are far superior indeed to the mere clever verse-writers of our Augustan age. It is easy to see in what feelings, and in what faculties, our living Poets excel their duller prose brethren; and the world is not now so easily duped,

as to bestow the "hallowed name" upon such writers as the Sprats, and Yaldens, and Dukes, and Pomfrets, "et hoc genus omne," whom the courtesy and ignorance of a former age admitted into the poetical brother hood. Unless a Poet be now a Poet indeed,—unless he possess something of " the vision and the faculty divine,"—he dies at once, and is heard of no more. There is, of necessity, in so poetical an age as this, a vast crowd of deluded followers of the Muse, who mistake the will for the power. But the evil of this is not great. The genuine Poets, and these alone, are admired and beloved. Of them we have many; but we believe that we speak the general voice, when we place on a triple throne, Scott, Wordsworth, and Byron.

Though greatly inferior in many things to his illustrious brethren, Scott is perhaps, after all, the most unequivocally original. We do not know of any model after which the form of his principal Poems has been moulded. They bear no resemblance, and, we must allow, are far inferior to the heroic Poems of Greece; nor do they, though he has been called the Ariosto of the North, seem to us to resemble, in any way whatever, any of the great Poems of modern Italy. He has given a most intensely real representation of the living spirit of the chivalrous age of his country. He has not shrouded the figures or the characters of his heroes in high poetical lustre, s - as to dazzle us by resplendent fictitious beings, shining through the scenes and events of a half-imaginary world. They are as much real men in his poetry, as the " mighty Earls" of old are in our histories and annals. The incidents, too, and erexts, are all wonderfully like those of real life; and when we add to this, that all the most interesting and impressive superstitions and fancies of the times are in his poetry incorporated and intertwined with the ordinary tissue of mere human existence, we feel ourselves hurried from this our civilized age, back into the troubled bosom of semibarbarous life, and made keen partakers in all its impassioned and poetical credulities. His Poems are historical narrations, true in all things to the spirit of history, but everywhere overspread with those bright and breathing colours which only genius can bestow on reality; and when it is recollected, that the times in which his scenes are laid and his heroes act were distinguished by many of the most energetic virtues that can grace or dignify the character of a free people, and marked by the operation of great passions and important events, every one must feel that the poetry of Walter Scott is, in the noblest sense of the word, national; that it breathes upon us the bold and heroic spirit of perturbed but magnificent ages, and connects us, in the midst of philosophy, science, and refinement, with our turbulent but high-minded ancestors, of whom We have no cause to be ashamed, whether looked on in the fields of war or in the halls of peace. He is a true knight in all things,—free, courteous, and brave. War, as he describes it, is a noble game, a kingly pastime. He is the greatest of all War-Poets. His Poetry might make a very coward fearless. In Mormion, the battle of Flodden agitates us with all the terror of a fatal overthrow. In the Lord of the Isles, we read of the field of Banhockburn with clenched hands and fiery spirits, as if the English were still our enemies, and we were victorious over their invading king. There is not much of all this in any modern poetry but his own; and therefore it is, that, independently of all his other manifold excellencies, we glory in him as the great modern National Poet of Scotland,—in whom Old times revive,—whose Poetry prevents History from becoming that which, in times of excessive refinement, it is often too apt to become—a dead letter,—and keeps the animating and heroic spectacles of the past moving brightly across our every-day world, and flashing out from them a

kindling power over the actions and characters of our own age.

Byron is in all respects the very opposite of Scott. He never dreams of wholly giving up his mind to the influence of the actions of men, or the events of history. He lets the world roll on, and eyes its wide-wertering and tumultuous waves—even the calamitous shipwrecks that strew its darkness—with a stern, and sometimes even a pitiless misanthropy. He cannot sympathise with the ordinary joys or sorrows of humanity, even though intense and overpowering. They must live and work in intellect and by intellect, before they seem worthy of the sympathy of his impenetrable soul. His idea of man, in the abstract, is boundless and magnificent; but of men, as individuals, he thinks with derision and contempt. Hence he is in one stanza a sublime moralist, elevated and transported by the dignity of human nature; in the next a paltry satirist, sneering at its meanness. Hence he is unwilling to yield love or reverence to any thing that has yet life; for life seems to sink the little that is noble into the degradation of the much that is vile. The dead, and the dead only, are the objects of his reverence or his love; for death separates the dead from all connexion, all intimacy with the living; and the memories of the great or good alone live in the past, which is a world of ashes. Byron looks back to the tombs of those great men " that stand in assured rest;" and gazing, as it were, on the bones of a more gigantic race, his imagination then teems with corresponding births, and he holds converse with the mighty in language worthy to be heard by the spirits of the mighty. It is this contrast between his august conceptions of man, and his contemptuous opinion of men, that much of the almost incomprehensible charm, and power, and enchantment of his Poetry exists. We feel ourselves alternately sunk and elevated, as if the hand of an invisible being had command over us. At one time we are a little lower than the angels; in another, but little higher than the worms. We feel that our elevation and our disgrace are alike the lot of our nature; and hence the * Poetry of Byron, as we before remarked, is read as a dark, but still a divine revelation.

If Byron be altogether unlike Scott, Wordsworth is yet more unlike Byron. With all the great and essential faculties of the Poet, he possesses the calm and self-commanding powers of the Philosopher. He looks over human life with a steady and serene eye; he listens with a fine ear "to the still sad music of humanity,"" His faith is unshaken in the prevalence of virtue over vice, and of happiness over misery; and in the existence of a heavenly law operating on earth, and, in spite of transitory defeats, always visibly triumphant in the grand field of human warfare. Hence he looks over the world of life, and man, with a sublime benignity; and hence, delighting in all the gracious dispensations of God, his great mind can wholly deliver itself up to the love of a flower budding in the field, or of a child asleep in its cradle; nor, in doing so, feels that Poetry can be said to stoop or to descend, much less to be degraded, when she embodies, in words of music, the purest and most delightful fancies and affections of the human heart. This love of the nature to which he belongs, and which is in him the fruit of wisdom and experience, gives to all his Poetry a very peculiar, a very endearing, and, at the same time, a very lofty character. His Poetry is little coloured by the artificial distinctions of society. In his delineations of passion or character, he is not so much guided by the varieties produced by customs, institutions, professions, or modes of life, as by those great elementary laws of our nature which are unchangeable and the same; and therefore the pathos and the truth of his most felicitous Poetry are more profound than of any other, not unlike the most touching and beautiful passages in the Sacred Page. The same spirit of love, and benignity, and etberial purity, which breathes over all his pictures of the virtues and the happiness of man, pervades those too of external nature. Indeed, all the Poets of the age,—and none can dispute that they must likewise be the best Critics,—have given up to him the palm in that Poetry which commences with the forms, and hues, and odours, and sounds, of the material world. He has brightened the earth we inhabit to our eyes; he has made it more musical to our ears;

he has rendered it more creative to our imaginations.

We are well aware, that what we have now written of Wordsworth is not the opinion entertained of his genius in Scotland, where, we believe, his Poetry is scarcely known, except by the extracts from it, and criticisms upon it, in the Edinburgh Review. But in England his reputation is high, —indeed, among many of the very best judges, the highest of all our living Poets; and it is our intention, in this and some other articles, to give our readers an opportunity of judging for themselves, whether he is or is not a great Poet This they will best be enabled to do by fair and full critiques on all his principal Poems, and by full and copious quotations from them, selected in an admiring but impartial spirit. We purpose to enter, after this has been done, at some length into the peculiarities of his system and of his genius, which we humbly conceive we have studied with more care, and, we fear not to say, with more knowledge and to better purpose, than any writer in the Edinburgh Review. Indeed, the general conviction of those whose opinions are good for any thing on the subject of Poetry is, that, however excellent many of the detached remarks on particular passages may be, scarcely one syllable of truth—that is, of knowledge—has ever appeared in the Edinburgh Review on the general principles of Wordsworth's Poetry, or, as it has been somewhat vaguely, and not very philosophically, called, the Lake School of Poetry. We quarrel with no critic for his mere critical opinions; and in the disquisitions which, ere long, we shall enter into on this subject, we shall discuss all disputed points with perfect amenity, and even amity, towards those who, " toto ccelo," dissent from our views. There is by far too much wrangling and jangling in our periodical criticism. Every critic, nowa-days, raises his bristles, as if he were afraid of being thought too tame and good-natured. There is a want of genial feeling in professional judges of Poetry; and this want is not always supplied by a deep knowledge of the laws. For our own parts, we intend at all times to write of great living Poets in the same spirit of love and reverence with which it is natural to regard the dead and the sanctified;

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