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farmers in all the upper parts of Ettrick and Yarrow; yet such a singular reverse of fortune have these opulent families experienced, that there is now rarely one of the name to be found above the rank of the meanest labourer.
But at the sourco of Moffat's stream,
Two champions of the cov’nant dwell ;
P. 68, v. 1.
These men's names were Halbert Dobson, and David Dun; better known by those of Hab Dob, and Davie Din. The remains of their cottage is still visible, and sure never was human habitation contrived on such a spot. It is on the very brink of a precipice, which 400 feet perpendicular eight, whilst another of half that height overhangs it above. To this they resorted, in times of danger, for a number of years: and the precipice is still called Dob's linn.
There is likewise a natural cavern in the bottom of the linn farther up, where they, with other ten, hid themselves for several days, while another kept watch upon the Path-know; and they all assembled at the cottage during the night.
Tradition relates farther of these two champions, that, while they resided at the cottage by themselves, the devil appeared to them every night, and plagued them exceedingly; striving often to terrify them, so as to make them throw themselves over the linn. But
one day they contrived a hank of red yarn in the form of crosses, which it was impossible the devil could pass; and, on his appearance at night, they got in behind him, and attacked him resolutely with each a bible in one hand, and a rowan-tree staff in the other, and, after a desperate encounter, they succeeded in tumbling him headlong over the linn; but, prevent hurting himself at the moment he was overcome, he turned himself into a batch of skins !
And deep and long, from out the lake
P. 69, v. 3.
In some places of the Highlands of Scotland, the inhabitants are still in continual terror of an imaginary being, called The Water-Horse.
And forced the lady loud to cry.
P. 69, v. 6.
The lass of Craigyburn after this line, is no more mentioned: but the story adds, that she died of a broken heart, and of the heats which she got in, being forced to run so fast.
DEATH OF DOUGLAS,
LORD OF LIDDISDALE.
The first stanza of this song, as well as the history of
the event to which it refers, is preserved by Hume of Godscroft in his history of the House of Douglas. The author having been successful in rescuing some excellent old songs from the very brink of oblivion, searched incessantly many years after the remains of this, until lately, by mere accident, he lighted upon a few scraps,
which he firmly believes to have formed a part of that very ancient ballad.
The reader may judge for himself. The first verse is from Hume; and all those printed within brackets are as near the original as rhyme and reason will permit. They are barely sufficient to distinguish the strain in which the old song hath proceeded.
THE Lady Douglas left her bower,
An' ay sae loud as she did call, “'Tis all for gude Lord Liddisdale That I do let these tears down fall."
[“ O haud your tongue, my sister dear,
An' o' your weepin' let me be: Lord Liddisdale will haud his ain
Wi' ony Lord o’ Chrystendie.
"For him ye widna weep nor whine
If you had seen what I did see,] That day he broke the troops o' Tyne,
Wi's gilded sword o' metal free.,
" Stout Heezlebrae was wonder wae
To see his faintin' vassals yield; An' in a rage he did engage
Lord Liddisdale upon the field.
"Avaunt, thou haughty Scot,? he cry'd,
Nor dare to face a noble fae :
And heavy hand of Heezlebrae ?'
“The word was scarcely mixt wi' air,
When Douglas' sword his answer gau; An' frae a wound, baith deep and sair,
Out fled the soul o' Heezlebrae.
“Mad Faucet next, wi' wounds transfixt,
In anguish gnaw'd the bloody clay ; Then Hallinshed he wheil'd an' fled,
An' left his rich, ill-gotten prey.