« AnteriorContinuar »
start them in the new country, like him impossible. Whether and he records that in nearly judicial rents and fixity of tenure every case the whole of the will compensate the crofting outlays were repaid. He population for the loss, is followed the careers of many matter which the future will of the colonists, and up to the show. Maciver's career, as relast year of his life frequently corded by himself, is, amongst received letters from Canadians other things, a defence of the and Australians recording the system of large estates owned prosperity of the exiled crofters by men of influence. The and expressing their continued landlord was wealthy, kindgratitude to the kind friend hearted, and generous, the who had helped them to the factor was intelligent and capfortunes they had gathered able, knew every man, woman, under kindlier skies. Many and child in his many miles of young men, “lads of promise,” territory; was himself of chiefowed to Mr Maciver's interest tain's stock, an hereditary and their start in life, and the acknowledged leader, and besheaves of gratitude he gar- sides had those gifts of charnered in his latter years showed acter and intellect which raised how judiciously the seed had him above those born his been sown.
equals, securing for him the Those who know him, and esteem and the respect of those who read his Memoirs, Dukes and crofters. will recognise that, though he The learned Celtic scholar was full of patriotism, there who has edited these Memoirs was never any trace of senti- describes the passing of the mentality about him. He old Highlander in words 80 helped a boy to become an simple, so sincere, and withal excise officer at home or the so poetical, that it were wrong chief of the police in Hong not to rescue them from the Kong, not so much because he semi - privacy of a privately was a Sutherland lad, as be- printed volume :cause he saw he was capable “ Speaking of a letter he half of better things than tilling a raised himself in bed, and in a strong croft or fishing for herring voice gave injunctions that it should The personal knowledge, the be sound, prudent, proper, and judiwill and the power to help at
cious. I can get recall the emphasis
on these words. He had Lord Balthe right time, cannot find
four of Burleigh's visit to Lewis and substitutes in any system of the Blue-book Report on his native examinations and bursaries or island also greatly upon his mind. scholarships. The paternal 'I am not afraid,' he then said to me, instinct, the paternal power, i
of any of my friends ; I have always instinct, the paternal power; done what was for their good. I have were of the essence of Maciver's no pain of any kind.' That was about administration. These things eleven o'clock, and in a minute or have to some extent died with two he suddenly retired within himhim. The changes that have
self and ascribed praises to God. He
began by reciting two paraphrases, taken place in the Highlands th
lands then many parts of the Bible-largely make the existence of another from the Psalms, Epistles, and Gos
VOL. CLXXVIII.—NO. MLXXVII.
pels, and with slower utterance em admired the husband, but as phasised the words ‘Song of the for the wife no words can exLamb,' raised his hands in blessing several times, once as if distributing pre
press the affection she inspired. the elements at the Communion of A princess saw her during a the Lord's Supper, and continued brief visit: she left feeling that thus singing and glorifying, the she had parted from a friend. Lord, with strangely intermittent
The people of the country recadence of bass notes in his voice, in remarkable harmony with the deep- garded her as a mother and a throated waves outside, for about five ministering angel. Born of the hours-interrupted but twice, as he Macdonald branch which gave if into infinite distance and said,
to Scotland and to history the "William,'1 then later, turning into
into immortal Flora, Mrs Maciver
immortal flor Gaelic, A Thighearna'-'0 Lord,' was capable of all that the when distinct articulation failed, and Highland heroine compassed, after an hour's soft breathing, as if and even more. Evander Macin sleep, in his ninety-second year, he yielded up his spirit with the re
tiver was the last of the Highceding tide, as the purity of the fall- land factors, but it will be the ing snow outside the window re- end of the race when his helpflected to those around him the purity meet ceases to be an example of a clean soul, whose beautiful death so clearly and triumphantly illus
and a type of a Highland lady. trated the blessedness of the pure in The old order changeth, but it heart, ‘for they shall see God."" will be a dreary world, could
it be imagined, when kind Beside the mother of his hearts, which find their exchildren, the inspirer, as him- pression in gracious manners, self would have said, of all the cease to influence the men who good he did and tried to do, guide it. “Manners maketh he lies within sound of the the man," perhaps, but a breakers on Handa. Those who woman's manners are the outknew these two respected and come of her heart.
1 Probably his dear friend Mr William Gunn of Glendhu, killed in a carriage accident in 1864.
THE DAWN-BIRD AND OTHER FRIENDS.
It is the very quietest hour abruptly as he began, no more of all the night. The latest to be heard for twenty-four dog has ceased barking, and hours. I have never seen him, the earliest bird is yet silent. though he lives so close by me,
Shortly afterwards a watoh- but his services I shall not man beats out the hour of four forget, for he has never failed o'clock on his gong hard by- me just when he is wanted a double knock, followed by a most. double knock, and then to show S o another day begins, and that it is four, neither more with light comes the welcome nor less, he ends up with a clatter of the tea-cup. Tea is rapid succession of taps a sure antidote for Morphia's
Very shortly after this the legacies. bird who lives just outside my A s I take post in my verandah tunes up his hearty verandah & little later, the little song. By this I know O'Haras are astir. But of that the long night is ended, them more— perhaps too much and that although it is full -anon. night down in our valley, Oh, but the fresh morning Cheena peak, fifteen hundred air, and the sunlight, and the feet above us, is already greet- movement and life about me, ing the dawn, and that the are welcome after the long bird is returning thanks for long night! A chestnut-tree being brought to the beginning in full bloom and a walnut of another day. With some form the screen behind which of us it is rather a feeling of my observations are conducted. gratitude for reaching the end They grow olose to the verof another night. And the bird andah, thrusting friendly leaves has the anthem all to himself, and blossoms through the railfor still there is not another ings, causing, by their freshsound but that of his shrill, ness and abundance, the poor fervent piping. With its com- geraniums in their pots to mencement Morphia, Angel of look gaudy and meretricious. Sleep, takes her flight, leaving, In the walnut-tree dwell two however, an aching head lest tireless tits, a dull couple, quite one should prove unmindful of voiceless, but always busy peck, her truly great benefits. For it peck, pecking at invisible someis she and she alone who brings things. Their nest must be three blessed hours of sleep, and close by, the exact locality who, steeping the senses in a never discovered; and dull and delicious languor, drowns all silent though they be, they are pain and all recollections of its company for all that, and I irksomeness.
should miss them were they As dawn comes stealing into not always hard at work in the room, the bird ceases as their accustomed place.
In the gap between the two the hillsides, are just clouds ; trees is a prospect passing fair. the thunder rolling superbly Yet, though I look on it with amongst the peaks is a comdelight in the morning, such is mon enough sound, called the ingratitude of man that “Gurruj”; while “ Zillzilla,” by evening (a long twelve the earthquake, terrible enough, hours' interval) I am weary of one would think, to be classed it, surfeited with its sameness, at least amongst the deities of longing for a change of view. the lower world, is an occur
The verandah looks down on rence to be borne stolidly, but a pretty shaded garden, and on no account to be dignified that is only separated from the by the weavings of romance. lake by the main road. But garden and road are mere de- " Charlee and Johnnee ! tails, interesting indeed for Nahtee boys! come here!” So what one can see going on in breaks the unmusical voice of either, but the merest pendants the Lady O'Hara in upon my to the great jewel that lies day-dreams. In good sooth, beyond. The lake, just dimpled shỏ and hers form the backby the light morning breeze, ground, will I, won't I, to my lies embosomed in its setting existence. If they are not of densely wooded slope or seen, they are heard, and sheer precipice. It is just a vice versa, more particularly mile long, and my verandah heard. My stout and leafy enfilades it all. At the farther walnut - tree forms, with all end Cheena, with her feet its brave foliage, but an amongst the pines and rhodo- ineffectual screen from the dendrons, rears her face, galling fire of the O'Hara scarred by nature and furrowed voices. If you asked Mr by man, and arrests farther O'Hara what his nationality view. And beyond! Well, we was, he would promptly reply are tied and bound here and “European ”; but Europe has cannot see beyond, but on never seen him, much less the such a morning as this the Emerald Isle. The accent with snowy Himalayas, dazzling which he and his speak is not white against the palest blue, a brogue, but what men call should be looking more un- in the East “chee-chee," and speakable than ever.
though all describe it vaguely And yet the unlovely, un- by saying that it is a chopping lovable hill - folk' that dwell short of all the vowels, it is hereabouts have neither legend really indescribable and indenor fairy-tale telling of the scribably horrid. In England Lady of the Lake imprisoned I have heard it said of an old in the hills by cruel stepmother gentleman (of possibly remote Cheena. The lake is to them the Highland ancestry, for his name “ Tal.” The densely gathered was MacTavish) that the funny cloud-packs that come floating accent he spoke with-which silently in at the southern was really a bad chee-cheeend, and spread themselves up was Gaelic. And just as the
dhobis and sweepers, who the two “dandies," for the not long ago at Hampton bearing of which they were Court flung chupatties to an kept up. “For,” thought I, admiring English crowd, passed “it will be much better in as Indian princes, so did the every way for Miss Eileen and worthy MacTavish sail under Masters Charles and John to false colours. But that was walk, even to run, to school not his fault.
or elsewhere than to be inI am idle, with much leisure variably carried wherever they for observation and reflection, go.” I thereby effected at and it occurs to me that the once a saving in the domestic O'Hara establishment is, for exchequer equal to about onethe income of one hundred third the total income. rupees a-month,-i.e., between Like all truly great financial six and seven pounds,--some- reformers, I found, however, thing large.
that my path was beset with It consists of the following: obstacles. Here was one, and Three children, three dogs, and I fear quite an insuperable one: a parrot—all very noisy and for Mrs O'Hara was under the unpleasant ; nine servants, impression that her offspring three ponies, and some poultry. were legless, and could never All the above dwell in a tin- walk anywhere. She never roofed shanty, the windows of told me so, but her acts spoke which are usually closed, for for her. To have argued with the O'Hara chest is very deli- her would have been about as cate. I repeat that for one useful as poulticing a mahogany hundred rupees a-month-Mr table-leg for imaginary toothO'Hara is a Government ser- ache. I had therefore, very unvant, and though his salary willingly, to reintroduce ponies does not figure in Whitaker,' and servants into the estimates. we all know what it is to an The children fully shared anna-his ménage is something their mother's hallucinations, large.
and were never seen in anyIn the abundance of my idle. thing but recumbent positions, ness, and in the ignorance of or during transport by bipeds my heart, I even calculated to or quadrupeds. For myself, what extent I might, by well. having seen on several occasions considered retrenchments, ease Master Charles kick his valet's Mr O'Hara's financial straits. shins, and Master John Miss I at once put down the children, Eileen's, — Miss Eileen's long who were uncomely, unhealthy, black-stockinged legs being the unmannered. But again I in- most conspicuous things about troduced them into the budget, her,- I had no doubt whatever for I saw that, with all their that, for their colour, which shortcomings, they were dearly was a delicate coffee and milk, beloved of Mrs O'Hara; and I the young gentlemen had quite wanted to be practical. But strong limbs, and that the I erased the three ponies, and young lady's, to judge by apalso four of the servants and pearances, were of a particu