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We cannot resist going on with the understand the value of his knowledge loved testimony of this highly respectable his virtues. Though he was distinguished authority, and we shall find it equally by his love of liberty, and almost haughty strong with respect to his moral as to independence, his ardent feelings, and proud his intellectual qualities.
genius, never led him into any licentious
or extravagant speculation on political sub. “ Dr Leyden,” these and the foregoing jects. He never solicited favour, but he remarks are contained in a letter addressed was raised by the liberal discernment of his by Sir John Malcolm to the Editor of the noble friend and patron, Lord Minto, to Bombay Courier, “ had from his earliest situations that afforded him an opportunity years cultivated the muses, with a success of shewing that he was as scrupulous and which will make many regret that Poetry as inflexibly virtuous in the discharge of did not occupy a larger portion of his time. his public duties, as he was attentive in The first of his essays, which appeared in a private life to the duties of morality and reseparate form, was • The Scenes of Infancy,' ligion. a descriptive Poem, in which he sung, in no “ The temper of Dr Leyden was mild unpleasing strains, the charms of liis na. and generous, and he could bear, with pertive mountains and streams in Teviotdale. fect good humour, raillery on his foibles. He contributed several small pieces to that when he arrived at Calcutta, in 1805, I collection of Poems, called the Nļinstrelsy was most solicitous regarding his reception of the Scottish Border,' which he published in the society of the Indian capital. “I with his celebrated friend, Walter Scott. entreat you, my dear friend,' (I said to him Among these the “ Mermaid' is certainly the day he landed,) to be careful of the the most beautiful. In it he has shewn all impression you make on your entering this the creative fancy of a real genius. His community ; for God's sake learn a little • Ode on the Death of Nelson' is undoubt English, and be silent upon literary subedly the best of those poetical effusions jects, except among literary men.' Learn that he has published since he came to English!' he exclaimed, - no, never; it India. The following apostrophe, to the was trying to learn that language that spoilt blood of that hero, has a sublimity of my Scotch, and as to being silent, I will thought, and happiness of expression, which promise to hold my tongue, if you will never could have been attained but by a make fools hold theirs.' true poet:
“ His memory was most tenacious, and
he sometimes loaded it with lumber. 66 Blood of the brave! thou art not lost
When he was at Mysore, an argument Amidst the waste of waters blue ;
occurred upon a point of English history; The tide that rolls to Albion's coast
it was agreed to refer it to Leyden, and to Shall proudly boast its sanguine hue; the astonishment of all parties, he repeated And thou shalt be the vernal dew
verbatim the whole of an act of parliament To foster valour's darling seed;
in the reign of James the First, relative to The generous plant shall still its stock re- Ireland, which decided the point in dispute. And hosts of heroes rise when one shall his memory with such extraordinary mat
-On being asked how he came to charge bleed."
ter, he said that several years before, when “ It is pleasing to find him, on whom he was writing on the changes which had nature has bestowed eminent genius, pose taken place in the English language, this sessed of those more essential and intrinsic act was one of the documents to which he qualities which give the truest excellence had referred as a specimen of the style of to the human character. The manners of that age, and that he had retained every Dr Leyden were uncourtly, more, perhaps, word in his memory. from his detestation of the vices too gene
** His love of tho place of his nativity, rally attendant on refinement, and a wish was a passion in which he had always a (indulged to excess from his youth) to keep pride, and which in India he cherished at a marked distance from them, than from with the fondest enthusiasm. I once went any ignorance of the rules of good breed. to see him when he was very ill, and had ing. He was fond of talking ; his voice been confined to his bed for many days; was loud, and had little or no modulation; there were several gentlemen in the room; and he spoke in the provincial dialect of his he inquired if I had any news; I told him native country. It cannot be surprising. I had a letter from Eskdale ; · and what therefore, that even his information and are they about in the borders ?' he asked. knowledge, when so conveyed, should be A curious circumstance, I replied, is stated felt by a number of his hearers as unplea- in ing letter ; and I read liim & passage sant, if not oppressive. But with all these which described the conduct of our volun. disadvantages, (and they were great,) the teers on a fire being kindled by mistake at admiration and esteem in which he was
one of the beacons. This letter mentioned, always held by those who could appreciate that the moment the blaze, which was the his qualities, became general wherever he signal of invasion, was seen, the mountain. was long known; they even who could not eers hastened to their rendezvous, and those
of Liddisdale swam the Liddal river to God blessed me with a son, who, had he reach it. They were assembled (though been spared, would have been an honour several of their houses were at the distance to his country !-as it is, I beg of Mr of six or seven miles) in two hours, and at Heber, in any publication he may intend, break of day marched into the town of to think more of his memory than my Hawick (a distance of twenty miles from
The money you speak of would the place of assembly) to the border tune be a great comfort to me in my old age, of · Wha dar meddle wi' me.' Leyden's but thanks to the Almighty, I have good countenance became animated as I pro- health, and can still earn my livelihood ; ceeded with this detail, and at its close he and I pray therefore of you and Mr Heber sprung from his sick-bed, and with strange to publish nothing that is not for my son's melody, and still stranger gesticulatio:s, good fame.'” sung aloud, ' weha dar meddle wi' me, wha We would willingly say something dar meddle roi' me.' Several of those who
on Leyden's poetry, did we not conwitnessed this scene, looked at him as one
sider the judgment to be passed upon that was raving in the delirium of a fever.
" These anecdotes," Sir John Malcolm it as really going but a very little way concludes, “ will display, more fully than into the general appreciation of his any description I can give, the lesser shades inerit. We care very little whether of the character of this extraordinary man.
or no Cicero was a poet, although it An external manner, certainly not agree- is said that this was a point of much able, and a disposition to egotism, were his interest to that great man himself. only defects. How trivial do these appear, Perhaps Leyden was more ambitious at a moment when we are lamentin the of this kind of reputation than the loss of such a rare combination of virtues, character of his genius warranted, or learning, and genius, as were concentrated than his other conspicuous endowin the late Dr Leyden !”.
ments rendered at all necessary. His There is an equally decisive testi- poetry has that kind of merit, howmony to the independent and disin- ever, that it always bears the imterested character of this high-spirited pression of a vigorous and versatile man, by his generous patron, Lord mind, although it does not seem Minto; but we have already quoted more often to be the natural vehicle into than we can well justity to our readln which his thoughts and feelings would ers, if they have not felt with us the have of themselves been carried. He deep interest of the theme. They will was a poet, because Scott and Campexcuse us, however, for adding one bell, and others of his associates anecdote of Leyden's father,
and contemporaries, were poets, “ who,” (as we are informed by the wri- and Leyden was not man who ter of this affecting narrative,) “ though would willingly be outdone in any in a humble walk of life, is ennobled by thing. Accordingly, we find him the possession of an intelligent mind, and breaking a lance with these illustrious has all that just pride which charac men in their different departments; terizes the industrious and virtuous class and this at least must be said for him, of Scottish peasantry, to which he belongs that, if he often fails in the combat, Two years ago, when Sir John Mal.
he still appears to be a preux chevalier, colm visited the seat of Lord Minto, in
even at the moment when he is unRoxburghshire, he requested that John Leyden, who was employed in the vici. horsed by his more alert and skilful nity, might be sent for, as he wished to
rivals. There is a want of grace and speak with him. He came after the labour ready expression in his poetry; but, of the day was finished, and though his if he had given his whole soul to that feelings were much agitated, he appeared divine art, we think he might at least rejoiced to see one, who he knew had che- have been the Ben Jonson of modern rished so sincere a regard for his son. In times, (could that name be separathe course of the conversation which took ted, in our idea, from the drama,) if place on this occasion, Sir J. Malcolm,
some of his great compeers have after mentioning his regret at the unavoid. able delays which had occurred in realizing character of the muse of Shake
nearer the full and flowing the little property that had been left, said he was authorized by Mr Heber (to whom speare. He has a great deal of inia all Leyden's English manuscripts had been
nute observation, brought in heavily bequeathed) to say, that such as were
and inartificially indeed, yet often likely to produce a profit should be pub- tersely expressed, and, like that poet lished as soon as possible, for the benefit of of the “ learned sock,” we find him the family. “Sir,' said the old man with pot unfrequently unbending from his animation, and with tears in his eyes, hardness and formality, and catching
for some moments a much froer air of And seems in Fancy's ear to say, sweetness and melody. His greatest
" A few short suns, and thou no more poem on the Scenes of Infancy is well Shalt linger on thy parent shore,
But iike the foam-streak pass away!" known, and will afford abundant examples of all his characteristic defects' Dear fields, in vivid green array'd ! and beauties. He has an ode on the When every tint at last shall fade same subject, written at a still earlier In death's funereal cheerless hue, period, from which we shall, in con- As sinks the latest fainting beam clusion, quote a few stanzas, as, be- Of light that on mine eyes shall gleam,
Still shall I turn your scenes to view. sides exemplifying most of these observations, it contains likewise, in its close, but too true a prediction of the
SPAIN. fate wliich was awaiting him, while it
Tuus is universally set down as perexpresses no less truly those patriotic affections which were with him, if haps the worst governed nation in with any one, “ strong in death,” and Europe, and that from which the least which well entitle him to the corre- good is at all to be looked for. It is, sponding gratitude of his country, and indeed, lamentably crusted over with to her tender anxiety for his fame.
the rust of a degrading despotism and
superstition. There is, however, fine My native stream, my native vale, metal here, if it could be brought out, And you, green meads of Teviotdale, and it is always pleasing to discover,
That after absence long I view ! that there are noble capabilities in a Your bleakest scenes, that rise around,
people, however they may for a time Assume the tints of fairy ground,
be fatally overwhelmed. It is with And infancy revive anew.
great satisfaction, therefore, that we
quote from a MS. letter of a very inWhen first each joy that childhood yields telligent traveller who was lately in I left, and saw my native fields
Spain, the following interesting obserAt distance fading dark and blue, vations on that country and its inhaAs if my feet had gone astray
bitants. In some lone desert's pathless way,
“ I entered Spain near the fac I turn'!, my distant home to view.
mous fortress of Figueras, which, in Now tir'd of Folly's fluttering breed, point of strength and beauty, is unAnd scenes where oft the heart must bleed, equalled in Europe; there, too, I first
Where every joy is mix'd with pain; introduced myself to cork trees. I saw, Back to this lonely green retreat,
too, with no small curiosity, admiraWhich Infancy has render'd sweet,
tion, and pity, all that remained unI guide my wandering steps again.
destroyed of Gerona, a town almost as
immortal as Zaragoça, and as ill reAnd now when rosy sunbeams lie In thin streaks o'er the eastern sky,
warded. The next day I entered BarBeside my native stream I rove;
celona, a splendid and flourishing When the grey sea of fading light
town. There is no giving an account Ebbs gradual down the western height,
of the devastations of Catalonia, and I softly trace my native grove.
no repairs, no thanks, rewards, or com
pensations have been made to the galWhen forth at morn the heifers go, lant Catalans, who are, I think, the And fill the fields with plaintive low, finest race of men I have seen, hardly
Re-echoed by their young confind ; When sunbeams wake the slumbering lese. They are, as indeed are all the
excepting the Albanians or the Tyrobreeze, And light the dew.drops on the trees,
Spanish peasantry I have yet seen, far Beside the stream I lie reclind,
superior in carriage, and appearance,
and dress, to the French. From BarAnd view the water-spiders glide
celona I went to Tarragona, another Along the smooth and level tide,
town half ruined by sieges, and from Which, printless, yields not as they pass; thence to Marviedro, (the ancient SaWhile still their slender frisky feet
guntum,) and Valentia, where, in the Scarce seem with tiny step to meet
middle of December, the air was 23 The surface blue and clear as glass.
mild as in summer, and where many
trees still preserved some appearance I love the rivulet's stilly chime
of foliage. The road still in many That marks the ceaseless lapse of time, places bore the marks of war, and near
to Valentia was covered with stone similar as the Spanish and Italian peacrosses over those who bad tallen by şant. The one reserveri, proud, and private assassination. I hardly think honourable; the latter, insinc're, lothere is any where to be found so guacious, and dastarıily. The first strong a contrast as between the peon rather repelling at the beginning, but ple of Catalonia and Valentia, both in winning your esteem and triendship appearance and in character. These on acquaintance ; the second very last are far below in every good qua. soon ettucing the favourable idea his lity to the first. From Valentia, I obliginig appearance and manners had went in eight tedious days to Madrid, caused. passing over the field of Almanza, and “ There is, I am told, the widest exchanging for all that was ever suid difference between these provinces and of balmy climate, the keen biting win- that of Andalusia, where at this time ter of Madrid, which I reached just (29th of March) every thing is more before Christmas. This city lies so forwarıl than in June in England.” High above the sea, that it has quite a mountain temperature, and a more penetrating and rarified air than I had THE CONGRESS OF VIENNA. felt before. “ I think the circumstance which
MR EDITOR, strikes most powerfully any one who ALTHOUGH I look upon myself to first comes into Spain, is the condition be a very loyal person as times go, I of the peasantry, among whom, (at will yet own to you that I was exceedleast in these three extensive provin- ingly diverted by your quotation from ces, there is no appearance of the in- Tom Crib's Memorial. My lungs dolence, the want, and neglect, which crower! like chanticleer, and I laughin general are laid to their charge. I, ed a full hour sans intermission. when living in the country, having Perhaps I was the more tickled, as I leagued myself with the curate, had am myself a kind of droll versifier in an opportunity of examining the con my way. The loom, which is my dition of the people, and was glad, calling, gives abundance of time for though surprised, to find in every cot- musing, and the very regularity of tage much cleanliness, very good pro- its sounds and motions naturally visions, and a good deal of furniture throws the thoughts of the operator and utensils. The bread and wine of into rhyme. In Sir John Falstaff's the very best; bacon, vegetables, salt time, weavers, you may remeniber, fish, and some flesh, were the ordinary were famous for singing psalms-in food. The labourer earned 2011. Eng- these degenerate days, we rather lish 2-day, and in summer more. take to funny songs. I am tempted
" It is too, remarkable, that the to send you one, which I composed lower orders are very well off in other several years ago, on the following ocrespects, and meet with very little casion: The Congress to which Mr molestation from the government or Crid's and Mr Owen's Memorials were from taxes, while all other ranks suffer addressed, separated without any disheavily. The people are, in conse- agreeable interruption; you will res quence, as free and as manly in their collect, however, a former celebrated manners and language us in England, Congress, whose dispersion was rather and seem to me very far superior in on the sudden. There are sometimes everything, to the same rank in events in history more ludicrous (if France or Italy: I am more diffuse they were not very serious at the time) on this subject than perhaps I should than the most fancitul writer of farces be, but I consider the people as a very could have contrived. Certainly there important object to a traveller, in all never was any thing that seemed so countries, but in despotic countries of much calculated to pour contempt and the very highest consequence, for ab- ridicule on all the wise headsof Europe, solute governments tend so much to as the sudden landing of Bonaparte in efface every distinction of character, France, when he was thought to be that it only is among the people that so well watched in Elba, and the conone finds cither originality or spirit. sequent suspension of all the intrigues Nothing can be more like to each and devices which were framing for other, than the degraded nobles of the settlement of Europe. Men could Spain and Italy, and nothing so dis- pot well laugh then, but they may
now ;—and my song, which was coin
Alex. In Pluto's domain ? posed on the occasion, (for I could Mess. Got to France, if e'er man did ! not resist giving vent to my humour
Aler. To France ? even amidst all the horrors that were
Omnes. Who, who, who ? gathering,) but which has since re
Mcss. Napoleon, to be candid! mained carefully locked up in my own Chorus of Crowned Heads. bosom, can now, I conceive, have no
Pshaw, pshaw, pshaw, pooh, poch, pooh, offence in it. The piece is entitled
Boney, Boney, Boney ? “ The Congress of Vienna,” and is a c'est impossible ! scene of an opera. The first speaker, The messenger's a feeble ! or rather singer, is the Emperor Alex Mess. He is near Lyons, ander.
And sets Louis at defiance ! Alexander. Now, my dear cronies, in
Tal. I fear 'tis more true than agree Congress assembled,
able, agreeable ! Here we're all sitting as merry as grigs ; France has knock'd under, and England
Alex. If 'tis so, we must make the best dissembled, None there speak their minds out, except & (Curse that fool Johnny Bull, though, who
of a bad bargain. few Whigs:
let him escape !) Against them to battle away
But here let us swear all, before he is far We've sent Mister C-st-r-gh,
gone, Who, to say truth, is a bit of a uinny;
To banish him forth (that will be a fine He ne'er could outreach us With all his fine speeches
scrape!) But they’re quite good enough to gull ho- Send him to Hayti,
Of the pale of society, nest Johnny.
Better fitted than Elba to cure his deli. Recitativo.
rium! King of Prussia. You are quite in the Yet can there a doubt be, right, my most excellent crony,
That Louis though Gouty There nowhere exists such a goose as poor Has ere now put him out of natura ti. Johnny !
rum? Aler. Yes, one !
Enter Second Messenger. (Chorus of Crowned Heads, convulsed with 2d Mess. Illustrious Kings, Napoleon is laughter.
in Paris ! Ha, ha, ha, hi, hi, hi ! Boney, Boney,
Omncs. The devil he is !
2d Mess. As sure as in fir tar is ! At Porto Ferraio
Alex. In Paris ? May sit and cry 0!
Omnes. Who, who, who? Yet we've been mighty civil
2d Mess. Napoleon by gar is! To the poor devil ! Talley and. More civil than wise, say I,
Chorus of Crowned Heads. 0, say I, 0.
Heigh, heigh, heigh, ho, ho, ho, Boney,
Boney, Boney! Alex. Let us proceed then to cut and to Then we must to battlecarve away,
Let drums and trumpets rattle! Boney's old lessons are not yet forgot : We yet will crush the viper Holland gets Belgium, and Bernadotte John Bull shall pay the piper ! Nor-a-way
Tul. And I'll make my peace while you Austria. But for Murat, he shall not get prattle, prattle, prattle !
a groat! He is not a fit ally:
You will perhaps allow that this I am for Italy !
was no very unnatural ending at the Prussia. Then me, my dear honies, you time the song was written ; but we can't refuse Saxony ?
may be all thankful that the battle Omnes. Its king shall have no land ! of Waterloo very soon gave it a much
Alex. I am for Poland ! 'Tis mine, and I'll keep it; for leave I'll this, you may perhaps hear from me
more glorious finale. If you insert not ax any.
again. I am, Mr Editor, your obea Recitatiro.
dient servant, Messenger enters.
A PAISLEY WEAVER M«ss. Great Kings, live for ever ! Bonaparte has landed
Paisley, April 30, 1819.