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One day, shortly after the incident above mentioned, a highlander was walking fearlessly down the pass, sometimes bending over to watch the fight of the wild birds that built below, and sometimes detaching a fragment from the top, to see it dashed against the uneven sides, and bounding rock to rock, its sound echoing the while like a human voice, and dying in faint and hollow murmurs at the bottom. When the highlander had gained the loftiest part of the arch, he observed another person coming leisurely from the opposite side, and being himself of the patrician order, called out to him to lie down; the individual, however, disregarded the command, and the highlanders met face to face on the summit. They were Cairn and Bendearg ; the two hereditary enemies, who would have gloried to have met in mortal strife on a hill side, turned deadly pale at this fatal rencontre.. I was first at the top,' said Bendearg, ‘and called out first ; lie down that I may pass over in peace.'
When the Grant prostrates himself before M.Pherson,' answered the other ‘it must be with a sword driven through his body.' • Turn back then,' said Bendearg, ' and repass as you came. · Go back yourself if you like it, I will not be the first to turn before a M.Pherson.' This was their short conference, and the result exactly as each had anticipated. They then threw their bonnets over the precipice, and advanced with a slow and cautious pace towards each other; they were both unarmed. Stretching their limbs like men preparing for a desperate struggle, they planted their feet firmly on the ground, compressed their lips, knit their dark brows, and fixing fierce and watchful eyes on each other, stood there prepared for the onset. They both grappled at the same moment; but being of equal strength, were unable, for some time, to shift each other's position,-standing, as if fixed to the rock, with suppressed breath and muscles strained to the top of their bent,' like statues carved out of the solid stone. At length M,Pherson suddenly removing his right foot, so as to give him greater purchase, stooped his body and bent his enemy with him by main strength, till they both leaned over the precipice, looking downward into the terrible abyss. The contest was as yet doubtful, for Grant had placed his foot firmly on an elevation, at the brink, and had equal command of his enemy; but at this moment M.Pherson sunk slowly and firmly on his knee, and while Grant suddenly started back, stooping to take the supposed advantage, whirled him over his head into the gulf. M.Pherson himself fell backwards, his body hanging partly over the rock,a fragment gave way beneath him, and he sank further, till catching with a desperate effort at the solid stone above, he regained his footing. There was a pause of deathlike stillness, and the bold heart of M‘Pherson felt sick and faint. At length, as if compelled unwillingly by some mysterious feeling, he looked down over the precipice. Grant had caught with a deathlike gripe by a rugged point of a rock-his enemy was yet almost within his reach! his face was turned upward, and there was in it horror and despair, but he uttered no word or cry. The next moment he loosed his hold; and the next, his brains were dashed out before the eyes of his hereditary foe;the mangled body disappeared among the trees, and its last heavy and hollow sound arose from the bottom.
M‘Pherson returned home an altered man. He purchased a commission in the army, and fell bravely in the wars of the Peninsula. The Gaelic name of the place where this tragedy was acted signifies Hell's Bridge.
THE LITERARY BORE.
There are many species of this great genus in this best of all possible countries; but the most intolerable, because the one you oftenest encounter, is the Bore Literary,-a gentleman who by lounging all day about booksellers' shops, snd passing his evenings in blue-stocking and other second-rate literary society, conceives himself qualified to talk about books and authors, and privileged to innoculate all his acquaintance with the nonsense with which he abounds. If you have the misfortune to meet with one of these gentlemen who happens to be walking in the same direction with yourself, you may reckon upon being tormented all the way by his pointing out to you people whom you never saw as Mr. Somebody, with a name which you never heard before, and never wish to hear again.
The Literary Bore knows all the living authorsmtheir habits and their habitat,—though he sometimes makes trifling blunders. The other day one of these worthy persons pointed out to me my own tailor as a celebrated reviewer~(I beg leave here to state par parenthese that my tailor is not Mr. Place of Charing-cross, who is believed to be the only man in the profession equally qualified to cut up and to cut out)—and a respectable dealer in Wigs, as the writer of a long diatribe on the Opposition. Some months ago, I was curious enough to know something about Coleridge, whom I had not, up to that time seen; and I was informed by my Bore that he was a pale and thin gentleman who lived at Highgate, and took great quantities of laudanum and metaphysics. I remember running one day from the end of New Bridge-street, Blackfriars, up to Fleet-street, on the assurance of my Bore that Mr. Wordsworth was passing in that direction. I followed the illustrious Laker with a reverence even greater than that with which he says he regarded his own leech-gatherer ; though for some time I could not behold his collar ‘at distance, and far off his skirts adore.' At last near Temple Bar I overtook him ; but though my friend was quite positive as to the identity of the person before us (as Reviewers say) with the author of the Excursion and other lively jeux d'esprit, I have always had some doubts on the matter in my own mind, for a little reason which I am going to state. Upon his getting near Temple Bar I observed him very dexterously transfer from the pocket of a stranger to his own a nice new Bandana handkerchief; now as I never heard that Mr. Wordsworth ever stole any thing either from people's pockets or poetry, I am of so charitable a disposition as to be inclined to think that the respectable person, one of whose feats I have just recorded, was not the 'noticeable man with dark grey eyes' commemorated by his friend Coleridge, but a man noticeable principally by the police. I happened once to be in Messrs. Taylor and Hessey's shop in company with a Bore, when a gentleman who occupies chambers in the Temple just over mine, and who is remarkable principally for being about seven feet high, came in. Do
you know that gentleman ?' said my Bore, in a gruff whisper-' that, Sir, is De Quincy, the famous author of the Confessions of an Opium-eater :-clever book, Sir-vastly eloquent; Taylor and Hessey have sold three editions of it, each of two thousand seven hundred and twenty-three exactlyneither less or more. I have since been told that De Quincy is a very little fellow, and that there is a trifling error in my friend's statement of the sale of the book—whether to the advantage of the bookseller or the contrary, I shall not stop to inquire.
But the most intolerable of all nuisances, (next to being near a table all spread over with the new reviews, magazines, music, and poems, at a blue-stocking lady's evening-party,) is to be placed at dinner near a Bore who has a forty-goose power of gabbling about literary matters.
Such a Bore shortens your life by remarks which you can scarcely support even with the aid of green glasses and hock—and still less when you are suffering under the double infliction of ennui and green-tea. He will tell you that Gifford was the author of the Baviad and Mæviad, and was moreover the editor of the Quarterly Review,-and that Mr. Campbell, who wrote the Pleasures of Hope and Gertrude of Wyoming, is the presiding genius of the New Monthly Magazine. He assures you (whatever you may hear to the contrary) that Lord Byron really wrote Don Juan : and though he thinks it a great pity that the Memoirs should have been destroyed, he consoles himself with the reflection that they will certainly some day or other be printed by Galignani, at Paris. He is convinced that Scott is the author of Waverley, &c. though he has seen part of a letter from that illustrious person to Miss Edgeworth, in which he denies it However he puts little faith in this evidence against the Baronet; for this particular part of the letter happened to be covered by the seal: and it is quite uncertain whether the word not ever stood in that place. The words were~ I certainly
-the author of these Novels.'-Now, as the Bore ingeniously argues—if the word not be supplied, this sentence contains an unquestionable disavowal of the Novels on the part of Sir Walter Scott. But as some people, he adds, have a strange habit of leaving a blank space for the seal, it is probable that in this case Scott, led away by custom, had followed the way of this wicked generation. He thinks it odd that both Scott and Byron should be lame,-although it is just as singular that they should both have
Their lameness, he facetiously adds, never made their verses halt in the feet. He will inform you that Barry Cornwall and Geoffrey Crayon are fictitious names ;-and that the Tales of a Traveller are now-adays in no great danger of being believed-particularly the Ghost-stories. He asks you slily if you know who Tom Brown is that wrote the Twopenny Post-bag and Fudge Family, and tells you that the author is a cunning fellow to have concealed himself so long and so well under that name. He piques himself upon knowing how much money every author gets for every new book-but is of course always wrong. I have heard a Bore of this description maintain to a certain Author's face that 15001. and not 12001. were given for his last work: but the Author, with the modesty peculiar to his tribe, assured the Bore that he spoke rather from a knowledge of the VALUE than the PRICE of his book.
The Bore reads the new poems before they come out,—and under the pretence of giving you their beauties, he misquotes the very worst passages, not yet having the Reviews to guide him in his selection. He is acquainted with all the Editors of all the Newspapers, and misapplies all their misinformation. He promises to tell you something new, and spoils all Jekyll's and Luttrell's best known puns in repeating them. He gives you some of his own bad jokes as the inventions of these eminent punning persons. If you praise the French mode of making coffee, he will cruelly rejoin-'Ah! I have grounds for believing that ours is not so good,-as my friend Sam Rogers said the other day.' He says with a mysterious air and sotto voce that Campbell is writing a new poem, to be published in quarto,--that he has read part of it, and that the scene is either in Europe, Asia, Africa,
or America, he is not quite sure which. He is particularly fond of preserving autographs of celebrated person's; all of which he thinks characteristic of the genius of the writer. He thinks Lord Byron's MSS. decidedly of a misanthropic cast, and in the true pococurante style, as if the noble Baron did not much care whether his letters were readable or not. He preserves as a valuable curiosity a note from Mr. Campbell, in which the celebrated author of Hohenlinden, &c. informs him that a sonnet of his to that unheard-of lady, the Moon, is decidedly rejected as a contribution to the New Monthly, as well as every thing that he would in future write. But I shall say no more in this place about the Literary Bore, lest I should be supposed to be myself the great Sublime I have been drawing.
[This paper, which, our correspondent informs us, has been printed in the only number of an obscure periodical ever published, seems to have been the origin of the long chapter on Bores in the Janus; or Edinburgh Literary Almanack].
O Fortune! Long years have I borne uncomplaining
The scorn-wrinkled frown of thy fool-loving brow ;-
But ne'er cursed thee in anguish of spirit till now!
I had hopes (who has not !) that thy hated dominion
Would release me, at length, from its heart-chilling blight;
Oft hath checked-it hath never assisted my flight!
Whilst things, garmented like me in vestments of clay,
Sons of meanness and mud, thou couldst lift to thy heaven;
For the sake of the boon thou couldst give,-and hast given !
Let them bask in thy day-beam, I envy them not;
Like the reptiles of Nile, were they sunned into birth ;
Can the slime of the land turn to wisdom and worth?
None can deem me of such :-tho' thou wouldst not allow me
To share in the smiles that seemed common to all ;
Enchain my proud soul,--my firm purpose enthrall !
Yet I've prayed in my heart, with a miser's fond craving,
For the gifts in themselves I but scorned and despised
The time is gone by when they ght have been prized.
All pitiless demon! The die is now cast !
I can brave thy worst malice, and curse thee aloud;
The lone hope of my soul thou hast stirred—but to cloud!
THE HALL OF SILENCE.
AN EASTERN TALE.
On the banks of the sonorous river Tsampu, whose thundering cataracts refresh the burning soil, and sometimes shake the mighty mountains that divide Thibet from the empire of Mogul, lived a wealthy and esteemed Lama, whose lands were tributary to the supreme Lama, or sacerdotal emperor, the governor of the whole country, from China to the pathless desert of Cobi. But although his flocks and herds were scattered over a hundred hills, and the number of his slaves exceeded the stars in heaven, yet was he chiefly known throughout all the East as the father of the beautiful Zerinda. All the anxiety that Lama Zarin had ever experienced arose from the conviction that he must soon leave his beloved daughter; and the question was always sent to his mind, 'who will guard her innocence when I shall have quitted her for ever?' The Lama was at this time afflicted with a dreadful malady, peculiar to the inhabitants of the country in which he resided, which threatened, in spite of all that medicine could do, to put a speedy period to his existence.
One day, after an unusually severe attack of his disorder, he sent for the fair Zerinda, and gently motioning her to approach his couch, thus addressed her :- Daughter of my hopes and fears, heaven grant that thou mayest smile for ever; yet whilst my soul confesses its delight in gazing on thee, attend to the last injunctions of thy dying father : The angel of death, who admonishes and warns the faithful in the hour of sickness before he strikes the fatal blow, has summoned me to join thy sainted mother, who died in giving birth to thee. Yet let me not depart to the fearful land of death, and leave my daughter unprotected. Oh! my Zerinda, speak! Hast thou ever seriously reflected on the dangers to which thy orphan state must shortly be exposed, surrrounded as thou wilt be by suitors of various dispositions and pretensions; some wooing, with mercenary cunning, thy possessions through thy person; others haughtily demanding both, and threatening a helpless heiress with their powerful love ?' He then reminded his daughter that he had lately presented her with the portraits of several princes who had solicited an union with his house, which they had sent to her according to the custom of Thibet, where the parties can never behold each other till they are married; proceeded to give a brief outline of their various characters; and concluded by asking her which of all these mighty suitors she thought she should prefer? Zerinda sighed, but answered not. Lama Zarin desired her to withdraw, compare their several portraits, and endeavour to decide on which of the Lamas she could bestow her love. At the word love Zerinda blushed, though she knew not why ;-her father, who saw the crimson on her cheek, but attributed it to timidity, again urged her to withdraw, and be speedy in her decision. Zerinda replied with a smile— 'My father knows that he is the only man I ever saw, and I think the only being I can ever love; at least my love will ever be confined to those objects which delight or benefit the author of my being;' and turning round, she continued, playfully, 'I love this favourite dog which my father so frequently caresses ; I loved the favourite horse on which my father rode, until he stumbled, and endangered his master's life; but when the tiger had dragged my father to the ground, and he was delivered by his trusty slave, I LOVED Ackbar ; and