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for his presumption. The claidheamh-more, or two-handed sword of Ian Garbh, (John the athletic,) is preserved in the armoury at Drumfin, near Tobermory, where the chief now resides, and the wooden part of the hilt is very beautifully carved in the favorite tracery ornament.
His leg bone, which Dr. Johnson shuddered at beholding, was long preserved at Breacachadh castle as a curiosity for its large size. There have been two who bore the same appellation in the family; the hero of this sgeulachd was the son of Lachlan Bronach, of Duart, the founder of the Coll branch of the clan, who lived in the reign of James I., say 1430.
The two following letters of the great marquis of Montrose are transcribed from the originals, preserved in the charter chest of the Mac Leans of Coll, whích, by the kindness of the present chief, I was allowed to examine. “ SIR,
“Having occasion to write to those fields, I cannot be forgetful of your willingness and good affection to his Majesty's service, but acknowledge it to you, and thank you heartily for it, assuring you that in what lyes in my pour you shall find the good. Meanwhyle I shall expecte that you will continue yr loyal Indevours in wishing those * *** * expect you to appeare
* * * obedient then they doe, and loyal in thy Princes service, whereby I assure (you) you shall fynd me ever yr faithful friende," “Petty; 17 April, 1646.
MONTROSE." For the Laird of Coall.
“I must heartily thank you for all yr willingness and good affection to his Majesty's service, and particularly the sending along of your sone, to who I will heave ane particular respect, hoping also that you will still continue ane good instrument for the advancing ther of the King's service, for which, and all yr former loyall carriages, be confident you shall fynd the effects of his Majesty's
favour, as they can be witnesses for you, by your very faithful friend,
Stretheardale ; 20th Jany, 1648.* Montros E. For my very loving friend the Laird of Coall.
There is another letter in the same depository, of a different character, but not devoid of interest, as illustrating
This is dated by Boswell, who saw it, “ Strethearne, 1646." Invermaillie he makes “Invinvalie.”
the state of Highland society. The slaughter committed on a member of a subordinate clan was resented with characteristic spirit. The principle of blood for blood was rigorously pursued in this case, and Cameron was not the first man whose friends, powerful as they might be, were unable to save him from retributive justice. Many a Highlander has been obliged to seek protection with a neutral tribe, where he has been saved from his pursuers, and where his descendants have amalgamated with their adopted clan.
“Strone; 6 March, 1737. " DEAR SIR,
“The long standing tract of firm affectionat ffreindship twixt your worthy predecessors and ours, affords us such assurance as that we may have full relyance on your favour and undoubted friendship, in recommending the bearer, Ewen Cameron, our cousin, son to the deceast Dugall Mc Conil, of Innermaillie, sometime in Glenpean, to your ffavour and conduct, who is a man of undoubted honestie and discretion, onlie that he has the misfortune of being alleged to have been accessorie to the killing of one of Mc Martin's familie, about 14 years ago, upon qch alledgeance the Mac Martins are now sanguine on revenging, that they are fullie resolved for the deprivation of his life; to the preventing of qch you are relyed on by us as the onlie fit instrument, and a most capable person. Therefore your ffavour and protection is expected and intreated during his good behaviour, and failing of qch behaviour, you'l please use him as a most insignificant person deserves.
“Sir, he had upon the alledgeance foresaid been transported, at Locheal's desire, to ffrance, to gratify the Mc Martins, and upon his return home, about five years ago, married, but now he is so much threatened by the Mc Martins, that he is not secure enough to stay qr he is, being Ardmurchen, which occasions this trouble to you. Wishing prosperitie and happiness to attend still yourself, worthie lady, and good ffamilie, we are in the most affectionat manner, Dr Sir, Yr most obliged, affectionat, and most humble servants,
DUGALL CAMERON, of Strone,
ANCIENT BRITISH SEPULCHRAL MONUMENT
IN CWMDU, BRECONSHIRE.
In Theophilus Jones's History of Brecknockshire, as well as in the later editions of Camden, notice is taken of an ancient sepulchral stone, bearing a Latin inscription, and described as lying in a field in the parish of St. Michael Cwmdu, in the county of Brecon; and, as the inscription is there very inaccurately given, a more correct account may not be unacceptable.
This stone, of which the accompanying print is a representation, may now be seen in one of the south buttresses of the above-named parish church, together with a brass plate containing the following inscription :
“ CATACUS HIC JACIT
FILIUS TEGERNACUS. “ Here lies Catroc
The son of Teyrnoc." "This stone was removed from a field called Tir Gwenlli, about
one mile s.s.w. of this church of St. Michael Cwmdu, and placed in this buttress for preservation by the Rev. THOMAS Price, Vicar, A.D. 1830,* having been presented to him for that purpose by the owner, the Rev. T. Lewis.”
As this act of removal might, by those unacquainted with the circumstances which led to it, be charged upon the above-named gentleman as a violation of antiquarian principles, it may be necessary to state that this stone had evidently been so frequently moved about, that its original position could not be as much as conjectured at, and the last situation it occupied was that of a
* When the church was rebuilt.
foot-bridge across a brook, where it had been placed by the tenant of the land; and, as the next use to which it should be applied would probably be such as to cause its entire demolition, this removal to a place of safety will at least be held excusable. And also, as in all probability it was originally placed over the grave of Cuttawc, the founder and patron saint of the neighbouring parish church of Llangattock, its present sanctuary has not been inappropriately selected.
This relic of antiquity, which consists of a rude stone pillar, is six feet and a half long by one foot thick; the letters are well sunk, and, from the natural hardness of the stone, (breccia,) in good preservation. In consequence of its being found near the ancient Roman station of Gaer, the inscription has by some been considered as of the Roman period; but a more attentive observation must convince us that it cannot be earlier than the sixth century; and indeed, the form of the letters bears the character of that and of the two succeeding centuries, as may be seen, on consulting Astle's Progress of Writing, where specimens of the alphabet of the sixth, seventh, and eighth centuries are given, and which precisely correspond with the letters upon this monument; particularly the square C, the S-shaped G, and the N with the transverse stroke near the centre, resembling a capital H, and frequently mistaken for that letter.* And various circumstances lead us to attribute this inscription to the latter part of the sixth century.
Another reason why it should be considered as subsequent to the period of the Roman government of Britain, is the corrupt Latinity which it exhibits. This may be seen in the word jacit, a common substitute for jacet; and also in the form of the word Tegernacus, which has the nominative termination instead of the genitive. This is precisely what we might expect to meet with in the sixth or seventh century; for, among the scraps of Latin occasionally introduced into their compositions by the early Welsh bards, a similar absence of grammatical correctness may be observed ; as, for instance, in the words Dews, Rex Regwm, Sola [i. e. Sol], &c.
But it is not in this secluded corner of the world alone, where
* From the equivocal appearance which the last-mentioned two letters present to those unacquainted with the alphabets of the early and middle ages, the last name has frequently been read TESERHACUS.
the ancient British still maintained its ground as the vernacular tongue, that these corruptions of the Latin are found; they are to be met with even in countries much nearer the Roman capital, and where the Latin language had in a great measure supplanted that of the natives: for Legrand, in his “ Observations sur les Troubadours,” remarks that Gregory of Tours, who flourished in the sixth century, and who was a native of Auvergne, laments his inability to write the Latin language grammatically. “Il ignore, dit il les déclinaisons des noms, ne sait nullement placer les prépositions, confond le masculin, le feminine, et le neutre, l'ablatif et l'acusatif."* And, upon the authority of D. Ruinart, who has given an edition of his work, it is asserted that there are in existence mss. in which that ancient author is really as inaccurate in his Latinity as he has represented himself; although later copyists, better acquainted with the language, have, in their transcripts, corrected those errors. Legrand also states that the same editor (Ruinart) has, in his appendix, given specimens of the corrupt state into which the Latin had fallen during that era; consisting of certain forms of legal documents, according to the customs of Angers, and which the following extract from a form of marriage settlement may suffice: “Tu dulcissima sponsa mea ad die filicissimo nupciarum tibi per hanc cessione dileco adque transfundo, ut in tuæ jure hoc recepere dibeas. Cidot tibi bracile valente solidus tantus, toneneas tantas, lectario ad lecto vestito valente solidus tantus, inaures aureas valente solidus tantus, annolus valentes solidus tantus. Cido tibi caballus cum sambuca et omnia stratura sua, boves tantus, vaccas cum sequentes tantus, ovis tantus, solidis tantus.” After such utter disregard of all grammar and syntax, and that too in the heart of France, “Hic jacit filius Tegernacus” will appear almost a classic composition.
In addition to the foregoing, this inscription presents another feature not wholly uninteresting to the antiquary; and that is the introduction of the quiescent G into the word Tegernacus, which is evidently a Latinizing of the Welsh word Teyrnoc, ac
Anciens Fabliaux, vol. ii. For want of access to Gregory of Tours, Legrand's own words are given here.
+ Such words as cido for cedo, and dibeas for debeas, &c. shew a systematic substitution of the i for the e in Latin words, and illustrate the form of the word jacit in our old British inscriptions.