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FACING THE ENEMY.
These lines are more true than poetical; henceforth | means agree with him as to the comparatively modem the Scots ruled the hitherto divided kingdom, and origin of the Round Towers. Kenneth removed the Liagh Fail from Dunstaffnage
"Men are we, and must grieve when ev'n the shade Castle, the regal abode of the Scots, transferring the
Of that which once was great hath passed away.” seat of royalty and the sacred stone to Scone, and causing
F.C.B. the latter to be enclosed in a chair of wood. After a reign not only of military activity but of civil usefulness, Kenneth died at Forteviot, and was buried at Iona. Holinshed's expression is that Kenneth placed
FRANK FAIRLEGH; the stone at "Scone, upon a raised plot of ground there,
OR, OLD COMPANIONS IN NEW SCENES. because that the last battle which he had with the Picts was fought near unto the same place." This seems to infer that the stone was placed in the open air. Is this
CHAPTER X. a remnant of the ancient custom of administering justice under the canopy of heaven alone, of which we read in the Bible, and find traces in the graduated “Is your master-is Mr. Vernon at home?" inquired mounts of the Druidical hierarchy ?
I of the grim-visaged old servant, who looked, if pos. All the Scottish kings till Robert Bruce were crowned sible, taller and more wooden than when I had last seen at Scone, and Edward I. caused the removal of the him. stone in 1296. By the treaty of Northampton, 1328, it "Well, I suppose not, Sir!" was the somewhat odd was agreed that the Liagh Fail should be returned to reply. Scotland, and for this end writs were issued by Edward "You suppose !" repeated I; “if you have any doubt, JII., which, however, were never executed.
had you not better go and see ?" Such is the romantic tale of our coronation stone. “That won't be of no manner of use, Sir," was the The chair in which it is fixed is very ancient, but it is rejoinder ; "I should not be none the wiser.” covered with rich draperies at a coronation, and the It was clear that the old man was a complete original; antique carving is not seen. What will be said if we but his affection for Clara was a virtue which in my declare all this history to be a fiction, authorized by the eyes would have atoned for any amount of eccentricity; credulity of ages, and now unveiled by the scientific and, as I was anxious to stand well in his good graces, I inquiries of an Irish antiquarian? Suppose Kenneth determined to fall in with his humour ; accordingly I M‘Alpin merely picked up a stone of memorial in replied with a smile, “How do you make out that-did Argyleshire, which our Edward eagerly removed to you never hear that seeing is believing?" London, and offered at the shrine of the Confessor, “Not always, Sir,” he answered, “ for if I'd a trusted either under the supposition that it was the true one, to my eyesight-and it ain't so bad neither for a man or, not caring much about that, hoping by its means to that's no great way off sixty-I should have fancied work upon the credulity of the Scots ? Suppose the Muster Wernon was a sitting in the liber-rary; but he real Liagh Fail of the Tuath-de-danaans was of a different told me he was not at home, hisself, and he ought to form to our coronation stone, and that it were still in know best.” Ireland ?
“Tell him I won't detain him long," returned I, “ but This has been alleged as a fact by Mr. Petrie, in an that I am come on business of importance." elaborate essay on the antiquities at Tara, read before “ 'Tain't of no manner of use, young gentleman," was the Irish Academy a few years since. This able anti- the reply; "he told me he wasn't at home, and he said quary quotes a tract written in the twelfth century, it uncommon cross too, as if he meant it, and if I was to being a description of Tara, evidently by a person who go to him twenty times he'd only say the same thing." had seen and examined the remains which he describes. “What's your name, my good friend ?" inquired İ. In this tract the Stone of Destiny is mentioned as an
“ Peter Barnett, at your service, Sir," was the answer. " obeliscal pillar stone" then at Tara. It is said now “ Well, then, Peter, we must contrive to understand to be standing as a memorial of the interment of a large one another a little better. You have known your number of the insurgents who fell there in 1798. young mistress from a child, and have a sincere regard
for her-is it not so?” “ To what vilo uses may we come at last.”
“What, Miss Clara, God bless her !—why I love her as The royal Tara is now an assemblage of irregular if she was my own flesh and blood; I should be a brute hillocks, and the sacred stone of kingly inauguration if I didn't, poor lamb.” marks the grave of rebels ! This pillar is of granular Well, then, when I tell you that her happiness is limestone, about four feet in circumference, standing very nearly connected with the object of my visitsix feet above the ground, and sunk as much beneath when I say, that it is to prevent her from being obliged it.. It certainly appears more probable that the Liagh to do something of which she has the greatest abhorFail was an obeliscal stone than a mere mis-shapen rence, that I am anxious to meet Mr. Vernon—I am lump like that exhibited in Westminster Abbey to sure you will contrive that I shall see him." admiring strangers, unless indeed its exertions and As I concluded, the old man, muttering to himself, sufferings in the cause of royal legitimacy have worn it “ That's it, is it?" began to examine me from top to to its present form. But whether we allow its Irish toe with a critical glance, as if I had been some animal extraction or not, our coronation stone is an interesting he was about to purchase ; and when he reached my face, object on account of the part it has taken in so many gazed at me long and fixedly, as though striving to read ceremonials; and, when we think that all the Scottish my character. Apparently the result of his scrutiny monarchs, till Robert Bruce, swore to maintain the was favourable, for after again saying in a low tone, rights of their people by touching this stone, and when “Well, I likes the looks of him,” he added, “This way, we remember the brave king who brought it to Eng- young gentleman—you shall see him if that's what you land, we may be excused if we give way to our romantic want-it ain't a hanging matter, after all." As he spoke, feelings, and forget for a brief time the less honourable he threw open the door of the library, saying, “ Gentlememorial of the hill of Tara.
man says his business is werry partickler, so I thought Of this hill we could say much ; it has been a subject you'd better see him yourself.” of investigation to the learned and exploring, but it is Mr. Vernon, who was seated at a table writing, rose still shrouded in uncertainty. We venture to suspect on my entrance, bowed stiffly to me, and, casting a that any attempt to connect it with the Round Towers withering glance on Peter Barnett, signed to him to will fail, and we are much disposed to agree with Mr. shut the door. As soon as that worthy had obeyed the Petrie's observations respecting it, though we by no command, he resumed his seat, and, addressing me with
the same frigid politeness which he had shown on the would have perceived, Sir, that your taunt was undeoccasion of my first visit to him, said, “I am somewhat served. I have no wish to conceal anything from youoccupied this morning, and must therefore be excused on the contrary, one of my chief objects in seeking this for inquiring at once what very particular business Mr. interview, was to inform you of the deep and sincere Fairlegh can have with me.
affection I entertain for Miss Saville, and of my intention His tone and manner as he spoke were such as to of coming forward to seek her hand, as soon as my prorender me fully aware of the pleasant nature of the task fessional prospects should enable me to support a wife.” before me; namely, to make the most disagreeable com- “ And have you succeeded in inducing the lady to munication possible, to the most disagreeable person to promise, that, in the event of my allowing her to break whom such a communication could be made. Still, I off her present engagement, she will wait
for the somewas regularly in for it; there was nothing left for me what remote and visionary contingency you have hinted but to“ go ahead ;” and, as I thought of Člara and her at?" sorrows, the task scemed to lose half its difficulty. How- “I have never made the attempt, Sir,” replied I, ever, it was not without some hesitation that I began : drawing myself up proudly, for I began to think that I
“When you learn the object of my visit, Sir,” you was carrying forbearance too far, in submitting thus will perceive that I have not intruded upon you without | tamely to his repeated insults," my only desire is to reason.” I paused; but, finding he remained silent, convince you of the necessity of breaking off this preadded—“ As you are so much occupied this morning, I posterous engagement, which is alike unsuitable in had better perhaps enter at once upon the business which itself, and distasteful to Miss Saville ; for the rest I has brought me here. You are probably aware that I must trust to time, and to the unshaken constancy of have had the pleasure of spending the last few days in my own affection, for the accomplishment of my hopes, the same house with Miss Saville.” As I mentioned as, had I the power to fetter your ward by a promise Clara's name, his brow grew dark as night; but he still which she might afterwards be led to repent, nothing continued silent, and I proceeded. “It is, I should should induce me to make use of it.” conceive, impossible for any one to enjoy the privilege “ Really your moderation is quite unparalleled," exof that young lady's society, without experiencing the claimed Mr. Vernon ; “such generosity now might be warmest feelings of admiration and interest
. Towards almost calculated to induce a romantic girl to persuade the termination of her visit, accident led me to the her guardian to allow her to marry at once, and devote knowledge of her acquaintance with Mr. Cumberland, her fortune to the purpose of defraying the household who I then, for the first time, learned, was your nephew. expenses, till such time as the professional expectations I would not willingly say anything which might dis- you mention should be realized; and Clara Saville is just tress or annoy you, Mr. Vernon,” continued I, inter- the girl who might do it, for I am afraid I must distress rupting myself, but I fear that, in order to make myself your magnanimity by informing you of a circumstance, intelligible, I must advert to an affair which I would of which, of course, you have not the slightest idea at willingly have forgotten."
present, namely, that if Miss Saville should marry with “ Go on, Sir," was the reply, in a cold sarcastic tone of her guardian's consent, she will become the possessor of voice, "pray finish your account without reference to a very considerable fortune:-what think you of such a my feelings: I am not likely to alarm your sensibility by plan?" any affecting display of them.”
“ Mr. Vernon,” replied I, “I was aware that the comAs the most sceptical could not have doubted for a munication I had to make to you was calculated to moment the truth of this assertion, I resumed : “From pain and annoy you, and that circumstances obliged my previous knowledge of Mr. Cumberland's character, me to urge my suit at a moment most disadvantageous I could not but consider him an unfit acquaintance for to its success; I did not therefore imagine that our a young lady, and, on hinting this, and endeavouring to interview was likely to be a very agrecable one; but I ascertain the extent of Miss Saville's intimacy with own I did expect to have credit given me for honourable him, I was equally shocked and surprised to learn that motives, and to be treated with the consideration due she was actually engaged to him, and that you not only from one gentleman to another.” sanctioned the engagement, but were even desirous that “ It grieves me to have disappointed such moderate the match should take place. Feeling sure that this could and reasonable expectations," was the reply; " but, unonly proceed from your being ignorant of the character fortunately, I have acquired a habit of judging men of the class of persons with whom your nephew asso- rather by their actions than their words, and forming ciates, and the more than questionable reputation he my opinion accordingly, and by the opinion thus formed, has thereby acquired, I considered it my duty to afford I regulate my conduct towards them.” you such information, as may enable you to ascertain May I inquire what opinion you can possibly have for yourself, the truth of the reports which have reached formed of me, which would justify your treating me
otherwise than as a gentleman ?" asked I, as calmly as Exceedingly conscientious and praiseworthy: I ought I was able, for I was most anxious not to allow him to to feel infinitely indebted to you, young gentleman," perceive the degree to which his taunts irritated me.” interrupted Mr. Vernon, sarcastically ; " of course you “ Certainly ; only remember, if it is not exactly what made the young lady acquainted with your disinterested you approve, that I mention it in compliance with your and meritorious intentions?”.
own express request—but first, for I am unwilling to “I certainly thought it right to inform Miss Saville do you injustice, let me be sure that I understand of the facts I have mentioned, and to obtain her per- clearly:-you state that you are unable to marry till you mission ere I ventured to interfere in her behalf.” shall have realized by your profession an income sufficient
As I spoke, the gloom on Mr. Vernon's brow grew to support a wife; therefore, I presume, that your patridarker, and I expected an out-burst of rage, but his mony is somewhat limited." self-control was stronger than I had imagined, for it You are right, Sir; my poor father was too liberal a was in the same cold, ironical manner, that he re- man to die rich; my present income is somewhat less plied, “ And may I ask, supposing this iniquitous en than £100 per annum. gagement to have been broken off by your exertions, is “And your profession ?”. Virtue be its own reward? will you sit down content “It is my intention to begin reading for the bar with having done your duty? or have you not some snug almost immediately.” little scheme in petto, to console the disconsolate damsel A profession usually more honourable than lucrative for her loss? If I am not mistaken, you were professing for the first ten years or so. Well, young gentlewarm feelings of admiration for my ward a few minutes man, the case seems to stand very much as I since."
imagined, nor do I perceive any reason for altering “Had you waited till I had finished speaking, you ! my opinion of your conduct. Chance throws in your
way a young lady, possessing great beauty, who is the 'walking gentleman'—have you ever thought of prospective heiress to a very valuable property, and it the stage ?" naturally enough occurs to you, that making love is "I perceive,” replied I, “that by remaining here, I likely to be more agreeable, and in the present instance shall only subject myself to additional insult : determore profitable also, than reading law ; accordingly you mined to carry out your own bad purpose, you obcommence operations, and for some time all goes on stinately close your ears to the voice alike of reason swimmingly, Miss Saville, like any other girl in her and of conscience; and now,” I added, in a stern tone, situation, having no objection to vary the monotony of a “hear my resolve: I have promised Miss Saville to save long engagement, by a little innocent flirtation; these her from Richard Cumberland ; as the fairest and most kind of affairs, however, seldom run smoothly long honourable way of doing so, I applied to you, her law. together, and at some moment when you were rather ful guardian and protector; I have failed, and you have more pressing than usual, the young lady thinks it insulted and defied me. I now tell you, that I will advisable to inform you, that in accordance with her leave NO means untried to defeat your nefarious project, father's dying wish, and of her own free will, she has and, if evil or disgrace should befall you or yours in conengaged herself to the nephew of her guardian, who sequence, upon your own head be it; you may smile at strangely enough happens to be an old schoolfellow of my words, and disregard them as idle threats, which I yours, against whom you have always nourished a strong am powerless to fulfil, but remember, you have no and unaccountable feeling of dislike. Here then was a longer a helpless girl to deal with, but a determined famous opportunity to display those talents for plotting man, who, with right and justice on his side, may yet and manoeuvring which distinguished Mr. Fairlegh thwart your cunningly-devised schemes :-and now, even in his boyish days; accordingly a master-scheme having given you fair warning, I will leave you." is invented, whereby the guardian shall be cajoled and “Allow me to mention one fact, young sir," returned brow-beaten into giving his consent, enmity satisfied by Mr. Vernon, “which demands your serious attention, the rival's discomfiture and overthrow, and talent re- as it may prevent you from committing a fatal error, warded by obtaining possession of the young lady and and save you all further trouble. Should Clara Saville her fortune. As a first step you take advantage of a marry without my consent, she does so penniless, and lover's quarrel, to persuade Miss Saville that she is averse the fortune devolves upon the next heir; ha !” he exto the projected alliance, and trump up an old tale of claimed, as I was unable to repress an exclamation of some boyish scrape, to induce her to believe Cumberland pleasure, “ have I touched you there?" unworthy of her preference, ending doubtless by modestly “You have, indeed, Sir," was my reply; " for you proposing yourself as a substitute. Inexperience and have removed the only scruple which stood in my way. the natural capriciousness of woman stand your friend; No one can now accuse me of interested motives; 'needy the young lady is gained over, and, flushed with success, fortune-hunters' do not seek to ally themselves to porthe bold step of this morning is resolved upon. Such, tionless damsels; allow me to offer you my best thanks Sir, is my opinion of your conduct. It only remains for for your information, and to wish you good morning, me to inform you that I have not the slightest intention Sir." of breaking off the engagement in consequence of your So saying, I rose, and quitted the room, leaving Mr. disinterested representations, nor, under any circum- Vernon, in a state of ill-suppressed rage, to the enjoy. stances, would I allow my ward to throw herself away ment of his own reflections. upon a needy fortune-hunter. There can be nothing more On entering the hall, I found old Peter Barnett to say, I think; and as I have some important papers to awaiting me. As I appeared, his stiff features lighted look over this morning, I dare say you will excuse my up with a most sagacious grin of intelligence, and, apringing the bell.”
proaching me, he whispered, * One moment, Sir," replied I, warmly," although your “Did ye give it him strong ?" (indicating the person age prevents my taking notice of the unprovoked in- he referred to, by an expressive jerk of his thumb towards sults you have seen fit to heap upon me,
the library door.) “I heard ye blowing of him up,Really,” interposed Mr. Vernon, in a deprecating but did ye give it him reg'lar strong ?" tone, “you must pardon me; I have not time for all that “I certainly told Mr. Vernon my opinion with tolesort of thing to-day.”
rable plainness,” replied I, smiling at the intense de“You shall hear me !" exclaimed I, passionately; “I light which was visible in every line of the strange have listened in silence to accusations calculated to old face beside me. make the blood of any man, worthy to be so called, boil “No! Did ye ?-did ye? That was right," was the in his veins,—accusations which, at the very moment rejoinder. “ Lor! how I wish I'd a been there to see ; you utter them, you know to be entirely false : you but I heard ye, though I heard ye a giving it to him," know well Miss Saville's just and deeply-rooted aver- and again he relapsed into a paroxysm of delight. sion to this match, and you know that it existed before “ Peter,” said I, “I want to have a little private she and I had ever met; you know the creditable nature conversation with you,-how is that to be managed ? of what you term the 'boyish scrape,' in which your ---is there any place near where you could meet nephew was engaged,-a scrape which, but for the me?" generous forbearance of others, might have ended in his “You come here from Hillingford, didn't ye sir ?" transportation as a convicted felon; and this know- I nodded assent-he continued, ledge (even if you are ignorant of the dishonourable "Did you notice a hand-post which stands where four and vicious course of life he now leads) should be roads meet, about a mile and a half from here ?" enough to prevent your sanctioning such a marriage. “I saw it," returned I, “and even tried to read what I pass over your insinuations respecting myself in was painted on it, but of course, after the manner of silence: should I again prefer my suit for Miss Saville's all country direction posts, it was totally illegible.” hand to you, it will be as no needy fortune-hunter that Well, when you get there, take the road to the left, I shall do so; but once more let me implore you to and ride on till ye see an ale-house on the right hand pause-re-consider the matter-inquire for yourself into side, and stay there till I come to ye.” your nephew's pursuits--ascertain the character of his “I will,” replied I; "but don't keep me waiting associates, and then judge whether he is a fit person to longer than you can help—there's a good man." be entrusted with the happiness of such a being as An understanding grin was his only answer; and, Clara Saville."
mounting my unpleasant horse, (who seemed much “Vastly well, Sir! exceedingly dramatic, indeed !" more willing to proceed quietly, when his head was observed Mr. Vernon, with a sneer; “ you really have turned in a homeward direction,) I rode slowly through quite a talent for-genteel comedy, I think, they call it; the park, my state of mind affording a practical illusyou would be perfect in the line of character termed tration that Quintus Horatius Flaccus was about right
in his conjecture, that care sometimes indulged herself whilst the grand panorama is terminated by “Moscow
the Holy,” and “Petersburg the magnificent." To the
and thus fixing the eye of each reader on the very track; A LAND JOURNEY ROUND THE WORLD.?
whether in forest steppe or mountain, along which Sir
George Simpson found the valuable materials of his The words “A voyage round the world,” have certainly book. On one side this line branches off from Liverlost much of their former power to charm the ear, or pool to Boston, and on the other it returns through the persuade the reader, careful of his pounds and shillings, Baltic to London; thus completing the great circle of into a purchase of two portly octavos, habited in their adventures which few are permitted to tread.
The governor sailed from Liverpool in the Caledonia, truly respectable coats of publishers' embossed purple. a steam-ship of 1,300 tons laden, and 450 horse power, So many tourists have scaled the Andes, and breakfasted on the 4th of March, 1841, being accompanied by a on some peak of the Himalayas, that the bewildered secretary, and four or five agents of the company. reader is often at a loss whether he should buy the last Although our traveller was compelled to make part Voyage to the Antipodes, just published, or wait for the of his journey on the sea, we need not describe the next pleasant excursion to the Chinese sea, advertised. The Caledonia was caught, and well buffetted by the
incidents of the voyage between Liverpool and Boston. as “in the press.” Notwithstanding the abundance of very tempest in which the President is supposed to such books, and the frequency of travels through each have foundered; and with this bit of information, unof the three hundred and sixty degrees of longitude, a varnished by the slightest attempt to paint mountain voyage round the world must still claim the attention waves, the labours of the ship, or the fierce battle of the of all who believe in the existence of a real world of clouds, we must take the liberty of passing Newfound
land, and its fish, and turning our shoulder upon men and women beyond the boundaries of their own
Halifax, in order to land the reader at once in the quarter ,of the globe. Such books are to the quiet streets of Boston, which was entered on the morning residents in our English homes, what the telescope is of March 20th. Though the people of this town to the astronomer—the means of bringing remote em did once throw good tea into the bay for the service pires within our view, so that we hear the merry song of the finny tribes, instead of first gently brewing of the Kamsckathale, enjoy a pleasant chat with the it in their tea-pots, and fighting afterwards; yet our Cossacks on the banks of the Don, and peep into the traveller likes the place well, for it reminded him most Red Indian's wigwam on some wide Savannah of the the gently undulating shores of the bay, highly culti
strongly of England. He says, “Even before landing, far West. Such knowledge is but “ book-learning” itvated, and partially covered with snow, had recalled to may be said, and can impart but little available infor- my memory the white cliffs and green hills of Engmation of the regions described ;-true, perhaps, if by land ; and within the town, the oldest and finest in the available you mean the acquisition of opinions necessary Union, both the buildings and the inhabitants had a for forming a settlement of Irish cotters on the Volga, peculiarly English air about them. Moreover, in many or for the organization of a railway company to unite lake respects that do not strike the eye, Boston resembles
her fatherland. She is the centre and soul of those Baikal with the Caspian sea. But, for the rectification religious establishments which have placed the United of our petty prejudices, which so often hang over us like States next to Great Britain in the divine task of shedthick fogs, and for the enlarging of our sympathies, so ding on the nations the light of the gospel.” that we may appreciate the qualities of other people,
From Boston he passed to Montreal, which the party these narratives are most useful. The merchant, the reached by crossing the ice of the St. Lawrence, yet lawyer, the statesman, and the divine, may gain from fettered by its winter chain. The sight of this metro. such sources the means of correcting the conclusions polis, and the remembrance of its former subjection to drawn from our own limited observations, or too partial | France, set Sir George Simpson on a course of reflecstudies. A “land journey round the world” is pecu- tion upon the differences between the French and liarly adapted to produce such results; as it brings us English races. “ On this flourishing emporium I shall into contact with a greater variety of races, manners, offer only this single remark, that it contrasts, as if in and institutions than a circumnavigation of the earth
a nutshell, the characteristic qualities of the two races can do. In the former case the traveller must keep up that inhabit it. The French were the original possesa daily intercourse with many people and tribes, in
sors of the city, while the English at first found themorder to procure food for himself and his horses, and selves to be houseless strangers in a strange land. But this inevitably forces upon his attention a thousand the latter have found their way by inches from the circumstances connected with national habits, language, water's edge, into nearly all that constituted Montreal religion, and government, which the sailor, who in the days of Wolfe and Amherst; and the former traverses a wide ocean, cannot observe. Amongst such have been driven from their ancient seats into the voyages, that recently made by Sir George Simpson newer sections of the city, being gradually jostled out, through the northern regions of America, Asia, and
even there, from every thing like a thoroughfare of Europe, possesses a high degree of interest for all Englishmen. It was undertaken by the governor of one We shall not detain the reader by entering upon of our most famous commercial incorporations, the the subject thus suggested; but take for granted that Hudson's Bay Company, and develops the resources of in all matters relating to commerce and colonization, those vast regions belonging to England and Russia, the English race excels the French (the Frenchman which girdle the globe to the north. The two volumes, will, of course, forgive us). Sir George now prepared therefore, carry us from Liverpool across the Atlantic, for the voyage up that system of lake and river navigathrough the whole breadth of the American continent, tion which connects the Atlantic with the regions at the across Behring's Straits, and into the heart of Siberia, base
the rocky mountains. “By nine o'clock our two leading us through ancient Tartar cities, and the
canoes were floating in front of the house, on the Lastrange swarms dwelling on the wild Asiatic steppes, chine canal, constructed to avoid the famous rapids of
St. Louis. The crews_thirteen men to the one vessel, (1) “ Post equitem sedet atra Cura."
and fourteen to the other-consisted partly of Cana(2) Narrative of a Journey round the world during the years 1841 and 1842, by Sir George Simpson, Governor-in chief of the dians, but principally of Iroquois from the opposite Hudson's Bay Company's territories in North America.
village of Iraughnawaga, the whole being under the
1 1 charge of my old and faithful follower, Morin. To do among us would wash and shave, each person carrying credit to the concern in the eyes of the strangers, the soap and towel in his pocket, and finding a mirror in voyageurs had been kept as sober as voyageurs could be the same sandy or rocky basin that held the water. kept on such an occasion; and each one had been sup- About two in the afternoon we usually put ashore for plied with a feather for his cap. This was all very dinner; and, as this meal needed no fire, or at least got fine, but the poor fellows were sadly disappointed that a none, it was not allowed to occupy more than twenty north-wester which was blowing prevented the hoisting minutes or half an hour. of our flags.
“Such was the routine of our journey, the day, gene“The canoes, those tiny vehicles of an amphibious rally speaking, being divided into six hours of rest and navigation, are constructed in the following manner :- eighteen of labour. This almost incredible toil the The outside is formed of the thick and tough bark of voyageurs bore without a murmur, and generally with the birch; the sheets being sewed together with the such a hilarity of spirit as few other men could sustain root of the pine-tree, split into threads, and the seams for a single forenoon. gummed to make them air-tight. The gunwales are “But the quality of the work, even more decidedly than of pine or cedar, of about three inches square; and in the quantity, requires operatives of iron mould. In their lower edges are inserted the ribs, made of thin smooth water, the paddle is plied with twice the rapieces of wood, bent to a semicircle. Between the ribs pidity of the oar, taxing both arms and lungs to the and the bark is a coating of lathing, which, besides utmost extent; amid shallows, the canoe is literally warding off internal injury from the canoe, serves to dragged by the men, wading to their knees or their impart a firmness to the vessel. These canoes are loins, while each poor fellow, after replacing his drier generally about thirty-five feet from stem to stern, and half in his seat, laughingly shakes the heaviest of the are five feet wide in the centre, gradually tapering to a wet from his legs over the gunwale before he again point at each end, where they are raised about a foot. gives them an inside berth.” Those, therefore, who When loaded, they draw scarcely eighteen inches of wish to see the less trodden regions of the world, and water; and they weigh between three hundred and desire an acquaintance with the magnificence of Nature four hundred pounds.”
in her wildness, must give up all notions of a drawingOn one of the silent lakes through which the journey room life. lay, the advance of modern science was marked by a The intense cold of the winter in these regions may steam-boat, gliding over waters where but a few years be estimated from the fact that on the 16th of May Sir since the canoe of the Indian only rode. Thus is George Simpson received intelligence that “the ice of civilisation pushing her way into the red man's former Lake Superior was still as firm and solid as in the home, and beckoning the hardy wbite emigrant to depth of winter.” The season was, nevertheless, so build his log-house on the site of the banished wigwam. warm at this time, that the party read and wrote in
The timber-cutters, called lumberers, are, in their the open air by moonlight, thus proving the vast amount rough way, also preparing a road by which the energies of caloric absorbed by the ice before it reaches the of the Saxon race may force their influence into the point of liquefaction. The Governor, after passing hearts of these wilds. The life of a traveller in those through Lake Superior, found himself amongst the regions has not much of "pleasuring" in it, as the Indian tribes, listening to their wild superstitions, and reader will readily admit when he reads the following attempting to alleviate the destitution and misery of brief description of the mode of encamping :
these little understood races. A belief in magic pre“We selected, about sunset, some dry and tolerably vails amongst them, and sometimes leads to slaughter. clear spot; and, immediately on landing, the sound of Their private wars are still numerous; and a savage the axe would be ringing through the woods, as the fury often spreads desolation over valleys which would men were felling whole trees for our fires, and preparing, be beautiful were their wild inhabitants far away. We if necessary, a space for our tents. In less than ten read of a shipwrecked crew belonging to one of the minutes our three lodges would be pitched, each with Company's vessels being murdered ; of deep plans laid such a blaze in front as virtually imparted a new sense to cut off travelling parties; and we find the Governor of enjoyment to all the young campaigners, while himself compelled on one occasion to take decided through the crackling flames were to be seen the requi- measures for repelling a murderous attack from a tribe site number of pots and kettles for our supper. Our of these savages. beds were next laid, consisting of an oil-cloth spread on The Indians are not unfrequently threatened by the bare earth, with three blankets and a pillow, and, famine, and many must in severe seasons perish in their when occasion demanded, with cloaks and greatcoats at trackless woods. Whenever a civilized settlement can discretion; and, whether the wind howled or the rain be reached, thither the wretched people throng to repoured, our pavilions of canvass formed a safe barrier ceive from the white man's hands the refuse of his table. against the weather. While part of our crews, com- The following passage illustrates these periodical calaprising all the landsmen, were doing duty as stokers, mities, and also the religious notions sometimes found and cooks, and architects, and chambermaids, the more in the elders of a tribe. experienced voyageurs, after unloading the canoes, had “Some three or four years ago, a party of Sautteaux drawn them on the beach with their bottoms upwards, being much pressed by hunger, were anxious to cross to inspect, and, if needful, to renovate the stitching from the mainland to one of their fishing stations, an and the gumming; and as the little vessels were made island about twenty miles distant; but it was nearly as to incline on one side to windward, each with a roaring dangerous to go as to remain, for the spring had just fire to leeward, the crews, every man in his own single reached that critical point when there was neither open blanket, managed to set wind and rain and cold at water, nor trustworthy ice. A council being held to defiance almost as effectually as ourselves.
weigh the respective chances of drowning and starving, “ Weather permitting, our slumbers would be broken all the speakers opposed the contemplated more, till about one in the morning, by the cry of Lève, lève, an old man of considerable influence thus spoke: You lève !'. In five minutes more-woe to the inmates that know, my friends, that the Great Spirit gave one of our were slow in dressing! the tents were tumbling about squaws a child yesterday. Now, he cannot have sent it our ears, and within half an hour the camp would be into the world to take it away again directly; and ! raised, the canoes laden, and the paddles keeping time to would, therefore, recommend our carrying the child some merry old song. About eight o'clock, a convenient with us, and keeping close to it, as the assurance of our place would be selected for breakfast, about three quar- own safety.' In full reliance on this reasoning, nearly ters of an hour being allotted for the multifarious opera- the whole band immediately committed themselves to tions of unpacking and repacking the equipage ; and, the treacherous ice; and they all perished miserably, to while all these preliminaries were arranging, the hardier | the number of eight-and-twenty.”