« السابقةمتابعة »
hamlet of Raploch, at the north-west “Of witty jokes he had full store, angle of the rock on which Stirling Johnson could not have pleased you more, Castle guards the Forth. His parents
Or with loud laughter made you roar
As he could do ; were too poor to give him any educa
He had still something ne'er before tion, and where he picked up the little
Exposed to view." stock of learning of which he made such ample use, it is impossible to tell. THE TURNIMSPIKE. Being deformed in body, he was incapacitated for most of the physical employ
“ Hersell pe Highland shentleman,
Pe auld as Pothwell Prig, man; ments open to people of his rank; and
And many alterations seen, possibly from a love of using his observ
Among te Lawland whig, man. ing faculties, he chose the profession of a travelling chapman. In some such First when her to the Lawlands came, capacity, and possibly impelled by his Nainsell was driving cows, man; disposition, he joined the march of the There was nae laws about him's nerse, Highland army in 1745, as it crossed the About the preeks or trews, man. Fords of Frew, not far from his home ;
Nainsell did wear the philibeg, nor did he quit his post till the fatal
The plaid prick't on her shouder ; April morning in 1746, when the hopes The guid claymore hung pe her pelt, of the Pretender were scattered on
De pistol sharg'd wi' pouder. Culloden Moor. He then hastened home, and in September announced But for whereas these cursed preeks, his Metrical History of the Rebellion, Wherewith him's nerse be locket, consisting of about 5000 lines, Hudibras- Ochon ! that e'er she saw the day! tic metre, in the Glasgow Courier ; and,
For a' her houghs pe prokit. as if conscious of the feat he performed Every ting in de Highlands now (for he was then but twenty-two years of Pe turn'd to alteration ; age), he added, “ The like has not been The sodger dwall at our door-sheek, done since the days of David Lindsay.” And tat's te great vexation.
Getting tired of his peregrinations as a travelling merchant, and having made Scotland be turn't a Ningland now, a little money, Dougal set up a printing. Nainsell wad durk him for his deeds,
An' laws pring on de cager ; office in the Saltmarket of Glasgow,
But, och! she fears te sodger. and there commenced the printing of those facetious penny histories, which Anither law came after dat, are to his poetry what Scott's novels are Me never saw de like, man ; to his. Soon after this, he obtained the They make a lang road on the crund, lucrative office of bellman to the city,
And ca' him Turnimspike, man. and in this capacity was king of his An' wow she pe a ponnie road, craft. He died in 1779; and in an Like Loudon corn-riggs, man ; elegy lamenting his loss, the local Muse Where twa carts may gang on her, thus recalls his grotesque figure :
An' no preak ither's legs, man.
Nae doubt nainsell maun draw her purse,
And pay him what him likes, man ; I'll see a shudgement on his toor,
Tat filthy Turnimspike, man.
They sharge a penny for ilka horse
(In troth they'll no pe sheaper ;) For naught put gaun upo' the crund,
And they gie me a paper.
And tere tey mak her stan', man:
Tey had na sic comman', man.
But I'll awa to the Highland hills,
Where te'il a ane dare turn her,
Unless it pe to purn her."
1710—1765. ALMOST all that we know for cer- Among her scriptural pieces are very tain of Jean Adams is contained in poor versions of some of the Psalms. an address by her friend Archibald Her best are blank verse sketches of Crawford, to the readers of a small the creation, &c., with “ Reflections on volume of “Miscellany Poems,” pub- the Fall,” inspired by the study of lished by her in 1734. She is believed Milton. We give this last as a specito have been born about 1710, the men of her attainments.
We also give address says, “in Crawfordsdyke, in the “The Impartial Law of God in Nature," parish of Greenoak. “Her father,” it which may be supposed to refer to hercontinues, “was a shipmaster in that self ; and from which it is to be inferred place, and her breeding was as is ordi- that she read Pope. nary for girls of her station.”
Another characteristic piece is entitled Having lost her father some years “The Vulgar Estimate,” in which she before, she entered the service of a defends her devotion to the Muse someminister in the neighbourhood, to whose what sarcastically :books she was permitted to have access.
Say, Muse, who gave thee wings to fly ;The result was to excite in her an ambition
What cause hath blown thee up so high, to emulate the models in verse to which In such a private breast ? she was thus introduced. Her pieces
Hast thou forgot thy native sphere ?
Thou mounts far higher in the air are all short, and her subjects are clas
Than eagles build their nest ! sical, religious, or scriptural. The classical pieces are mostly addresses to Thy private lot is far from fit the Muse, and in praise of the virtue of For such uncommon flights of wit ;
It quite consumes thy time : chastity—as “ To Lucretia ;” or “ Ulys
Had thou a fortune opulent, suses and Penelope ;” and denouncing Such strains would be thy ornament, its opposite, “ To Cleopatra.”
But here, they are a crime !"
After making her appearance as an
fore the more desirous that she should author, she opened a day-school for be known by what is undisputably her children, which does not appear to own. We give our views regarding the have been a success, partly, it would ap- authorship of “There's nae Luck about pear, from her ideas being too refined the House " in a note prefixed to the and fanciful for the practical matter-of- song. fact traders of Greenock. She is said to have been so far in advance of her
THE IMPARTIAL LAW OF GOD age, as to have introduced the reading of
IN NATURE. Shakespeare to her pupils; and so sensitive to his beauties, as to have fainted By way of insult thou inquires at me,
Who first it was that gave me wings to fly? in reading Othello. It is also recorded that she walked to London to see
He, who had power to place me on a
throne, Richardson, the author of Clarissa ; for
Thought fit to place me on a vale alone ; which purpose she shut her school for
Yet gave me wings, by which I might six weeks. The truth of these reports
aspir of her eccentricities rests upon tradition; To light my lamp at the celestial fire. but, judging from the ideas which she Tell thou, my hand it might become a ring, ventilates in her poems, especially in My neck might seem more graceful by a her various addresses to the Muse, they chain. are quite in character. And she must Deformity is oft oblig'd to dress, have been a character to whom we
Paint seems to mend the ruins of a face. could have wished a kindlier lot than
But neither earth nor sea could aught fortune had marked out for her. After
That e're could raise the ruins of a heart. herschool had failed, it is said she became
All Creesus' riches could not buy a Muse, an itinerant merchant, still carrying her
Nor give me inward light fit theme to romantic notions into this uncongenial
chuse ; sphere. She broke down at last, but
Nor interprizing Cæsar's lot on earth not till she was fairly exhausted ; for
Could give me cause to boast of heavenly she died on the 3d April 1765, the day birth. after she was admitted as a “stranger The law of nature is the same in all, into the Glasgow Town Hospital. In such a case a talent is a call. Her “Miscellany Poems is now
What do I owe to ought below the sun, very scarce, and the specimens given My worth does in a different channel run. give a fair idea of its contents. They The cause of my creation was as high
As his who does an earthly sceptre sway ; also enable the reader to realize what
Out of the dust he sprung as well as I, Jean Adams was, better than any delineation of her. The beautiful national His soul descended from the spotless
No more than I can he Atropos fly. song of “There's nae Luck about the
clime House” has been claimed as her com
Of pure etherial substance ; so did mine. position, on grounds which to us One rule of life was given to us both, seem very unsatisfactory ; we are there. As early I engag'd as he by oath.
I am as free as he to gain the prize When the bewitched siren reach'd his ear
Ten thousand beauties shone in every As much as he do I abhor offence.
line ; The lowest class that is below the sun, Her theme seem'd worthy of the greatest True faith and virtue puts respect upon.
soul. 'Tis better to adorn a private lot,
Knowledge, the darling of the gods above, Than be to shining eminence a blot. The only good prohibit here below!
What happiness can be where thou art
What trade can flourish where thou dost REFLECTIONS ON THE FALL.
not come? Thus was the costly ship humanity
Thou art the salt that heals the poison'd Both built and launch'd into the sea of springs, time,
'Tis thee that fructifies the barren soil ; And rigg'd and mann'd and laden to the Thy virtue raises man above the brutes, brim
And sets him on a level with the gods. With as much value of intrinsic worth, So sang the siren, and by slow degrees As would have been an everlasting fund Came closely up into the human ear ; To keep the royal navy in repair.
The name of wisdom set the soul on fire, With pure desires her silken sails were The sparks of false ambition upwards fill'd,
flew, And from the cable to the smallest cord Quick through the mind ran the devourHer tacklings all were of unspotted love. ing flame, Wisdom was pilot, he the channels knew, Whose veh'mence burnt all solid knowHis knowledge was of an eternal date :
ledge up : For he had liv'd with the great architect. Its rage brake through the limits of By him the universal plan was drawn ;
desire, No creek nor shoal, but his discerning eye The hallowed vessels cast in divine mould With ease could reach, the distant ne'er | By wisdom's hand no form at all retain'd: so far :
Such was the violence of infernal fire, Th' imperial heights were level to his view, | It chang'd them all to liquid streams of Nor could the depths of hell from him gold, conceal.
Which useless o'er the blackened pavePower was lieutenant, at whose high com
ment ran. mand,
Strange havoc pride in human nature With quick dispatch the heaven-born pas- made, sions ran.
True glory to false knowledge fell a All appetites were subject to his will.
prey, Freewill was captain, poor green-headed But who would spare these toys to be a youth !
god ? He could not long that dignity possess, And yet, alas ! 'twas but a demi-god, Nor yet perform that mighty task alone. A fabled heaven and a cloudy throne, Few leagues from shore humanity had | A cloud could ne'er sustain a mortal launch'd,
But stay, my Muse, I quite forget ny Confounded Freewill stood upon the shore, port ;
And saw the wealth of both the worlds I did not find a side wind in my sail,
sunk; Nor could conceive from whence this Seized by despair upon the shore he stood, slowness sprang,
Ruin behind, and red revenge before ; But sadly dream'd that, like humanity, No friend he knew, nor thought on a Either my helm was broke, or I was reprieve; pilotless :
When from behind the scene soft Mercy But now th' auspicious gale is in my sail, stept, The ocean smiles, the mist in kindness Her god-like form the eyes of all attracts,
Her garments were of pure unspotted Come, get thee to the top, and thou shalt white,
Her eyes were flames of bright seraphic Afar the grave of all our happiness.
fire : On this inchanting isle 'twas first interr’d; Upon her lips a divine sentence dwelt, From thence the sound of wisdom reach'd Her accents warm'd the soul and charm'd
the ear; Which innocence itself could not reject, With jealous eye she views the settled Drunk with the thirst of knowledge and beam of rule,
In which impartial justice weighs the cause, Poor heedless Freewill leapt upon the Then calls to mind that Heaven's deshore,
crees are fix'd, Nor dreams he walks upon forbidden Next views the panel in a shower of tears. ground,
Unseen I stood, said she, to hear what But views the magic circle with delight. past, Lo: here a Babel to himself he builds, And own the sentence worthy of a god. To make himself an everlasting name, In Me thou shalt be fully satisfied. And fondly writes his epitaph in dust : Lo! I am sent to set thy prisoner free ; For when prohibit knowledge felt the touch, Let Us infinites on a level stand, Away it vanish'd like a cloud of smoke ; And leave these finite creatures to my No single mark of wisdom there was seen, care. But late posterity was left to read What strength have they thy anger to In tears the lasting records of his folly.
sustain ? Here Freewill roves at large, and leaves his | Let all thy hidden vengeance fall on me. charge,
From all eternity have I been form'd When lo! just Heaven sends her plagues within the bosom of the infinite. abroad,
No human power can his decree reverse. The tempest rages both on sea and shore, Justice reply'd, if thou hast heard it all, Humanity is from her anchor driven, 'Tis very certain that thou must have The airy power of self-existence fell,
heard, No single vestage of the same was seen, He in effect hath called my balance false : Affronted wisdom to his centre fled, Such insolence as this who can forgive? Power quites his post, and Goodness up- I vindicate the measures thou hast taken, ward fled.
Said Mercy, and thou shalt be satisfied ; All order was in deep confusion lost. I'll meet thee in the person of a god.