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as chief over the natives for about 30 years. 5. Account of an Icelandic mariner, Gudleif GudlaugSON, who was driven to the same coast in the year 1027, and who was rescued from death or captivity by his above mentioned countryman. 6. Extracts froin the Annals of Iceland of the middle ages, in so far as they relate to America, particularly BISHOP Eric's voyage to Vineland in 1121; the discovery of new countries by the Icelanders in the Western Ocean in 1285; an expedition from Norway and Iceland in the year 1288-90; and also a trading voyage from the ancient colony in Greenland 10 MARKLAND in America in 1347, as recorded by cotemporaries. 7. Ancient accounts of the most northern districts of Greenland and America, chiefly visited by the North men for the purpose of hunting and fishing; among these a very remarkable account (from a letter of a Greenland clergyman) of a Voyage of Discovery undertaken by some clergymen from the Bishopric of Gardar in Greenland, in the year 1266, being - as is corroborated by an astronomical observation -THROUGH LANCASTER SOUND AND BARROW'S STRAIT to regions which in our days have for the first time been made correctly known through the zealous exertions of Sir William Parry, Sir Jobn Ross, and Capt. Janies Clark Ross, and other British navigators. 8. Extracts from the ancient geographical works of the Icelanders, to which is added an outline taken in the 13th century, representing the earth in four inhabited quarters. 9. An ancient Faroish Oväji wherein Vineland is named, and allusion is made to its connexion with Ireland.'
There is another class of antiquities, to which allusion has been made, which are of great importance in elucidating the history of the North. They are to the Scandinavian people, what the monumental inscriptions of Egypt and Greece are, in investigating their history. No architectural remains exist, like those of the latter countries, nor do their rude sculptures denote any proficiency in this branch of art. Like the people by whom they were executed, they are marked with the rudeness in their execution which characterizes their works. In archæology, they are denominated “Runes,' and consist of rocks sculptured with ancient Runic letters, recording important events which have transpired in the countries where they are formed. * Runes' are common throughout the North of Europe, and have also been found in Asiatic Russia, Siberia, and Tartary. In many instances, rude obelisks, from ten to twenty feet in height, are found with inscriptions, and in others, smooth or natural-faced rocks on the banks of rivers, or on prominent points in the interior. In America, and particularly in the northern states, inscribed rocks are known to exist, which, in some respects, are analogous to those of Europe and Asia. The most celebrated of these is the
Dighton Rock in Massachusetts. It is situated on the banks of Taunton river, and has, since the first settlement of the country, attracted the attention of the antiquarians, both of America and Europe.* Strahlenberg, in his account of Siberia, gives drawings of the principal ones in that region, and the transactions of the Learned Societies of Denmark and Sweden, contain drawings, as well as translations, of many found in those countries. The Scandinavian Runes contain records of remarkable battles, and are found where such battles were fought; others are conveyances of land, and embody much valuable historical information. The researches of the Danish Society, to which allusion has been made, have recently brought to light some inscriptions, and their meaning, to which it may be well to refer. In their late publications, the results of their investigations are given at length. The first of these, called the Runamo Inscrip
+ The Dighton or Assonet Rock, with its inscription, forms the subject of a most curious disquisition, in the volume of the Royal Society of Northern Antiquaries, referred to. It is situated in a prominent point, in the immediate vicinity of the place where the Scandinavian colony was founded, and appears to be a record of the visit and occupation of the country, by those hardy navigators, in the tenth century.
tion,' is cut on the flat surface of a rock, near Runamo, in Sweden, and is supposed to be the oldest monument of the kind in all the North. Mention was first made of its existence by the Danish historian, Saxo Grammaticus, who lived in the twelfth century. He states that King Waldemar the First, who reigned between 1157 and 1182, sent companies thither, skilled in Runic lore, for the purpose of reading the inscription, and that they returned without having accomplished the object of their mission, in consequence of its obscurity. For five hundred years after, no attempt was made. In 1649, the celebrated antiquary, Ole Worm, (Olaus Wormius,) who was then engaged in collecting materials for his great work, the Monumenta Danica, had a drawing taken, but failed in deciphering it. His ill success did not prevent others from examining it during the last century, who were alike unable to throw any light upon it. In 1805, another celebrated antiquary, M. F. Arendt, of Altona, the fame of whose pilgrimages on foot to many other like monuments is known throughout Europe, examined it; and being unable to make out the inscription as readily as he had been used to solving similar ones, declared it to be nothing more than a lusus natura. From this period, the opinion of Arendt became the prevailing one, and all hope of ever deciphering the inscription was considered vain. A few years since, it occurred to the Bishop of Zealand, Dr. Müller, who was preparing a new edition of Saxo, to have this monument again examined, and invited the Royal Society of Sciences to unite with him in the task, which they consented to do, by deputing a committee of three to proceed to Runamo, and examine the inscription. In July, 1833, they accomplished their task, took a copy of the Runes, which they decided were veritable characters, produced by artificial means, though blended with accidental cracks and fissures. Returning to Copenhagen, the committee appointed one of their number, Finn Magnusen, to undertake the charge of interpreting the characters, to which he immediately applied himself. Notwithstanding his efforts, ten months elapsed, during which he made no progress toward its accomplishment. At this time, it fortunately occurred to him, on the 22d May, 1834, to altempt to read the inscription backward, that is, from left to right, upon which he made out, with perfect ease, the first word, and in less than two hours, the whole.* It was found to be in the Old Northern or Icelandic tongue, in regular alliterative verse, and was executed in the year 680 or about that period. The Sagas, as well as the Danish History of Saxo, make mention of a famous battle, fought in East Gothland at this period, between Harald Hildekin, King of Denmark, and Ring, King of Sweden, in which warriors from all parts of the North participated as auxiliaries.
The particulars are so plainly stated, that they cannot be mistaken, and the inscription here discovered, corroborates what history has recorded. It appears by the Saga, which contains the account of the battle, that the army of Harald was seven days on its way to the appointed field in East Gothland, and passed near Runamo. While there, it is probable that the inscription was cut, and the song chanted by the priests, magicians, or Skalds, in presence of the king himself.
* Report of the Royal Society of Northern Antiquaries, p. 43.
The record in question has been thus translated :
Odin and Frey Olè took the oath;
And the Aser race Odin consecrate these Runes!
Destroy (destroy) May Ring get
Our enemies! A fall on the mould ;s
Grant to Harald Elves, Gods of fidelity!
A great victory!
Another inscription of the same kind, recently deciphered, is that on an obelisk found at Ruth well, in Scotland. This monument has long been known, and is mentioned by various travellers in, and writers on, Scotland. In 1612, the General Assembly of the church of Scotland passed an order that it should be destroyed as idolatrous. It was accordingly broken in pieces, and the fragments placed in the church for seats. Here the Runic letters frequently attracted the attention of antiquaries, and among them Bishop Gibson, who, in his version of Camden's Brittania, printed in 1695, speaks of it as a pillar 'curiously engraved, with some inscription upon it.' Pennant, who saw it in 1772, says it contained Saxon letters, etc. Chalmers, in bis Caledonia, supposes it to have been erected by the Danes, who subdued this part of the country in the year 875. Notwithstanding much curiosity was excited, it does not appear that any one ever succeeded in deciphering it; nor was any pains taken to preserve it, until Dr. Duncan, the present minister of Ruthwell, caused the fragments to be collected, and the monument restored. He then caused a correct drawing to be made of the inscriptions, which was given to Mr. Thorleif Gudmundsen Repp, a learned Icelander, residing at Edinburgh, who, from his knowledge of the ancient languages of the North, soon ascertained the inscription to be Anglo-Saxon Runes. His account of it was published in the Archeologia Scotice, for 1892. The Royal Society of Northern Antiquarians have since investigated the subject, and have been enabled, more satisfactorily to make out the entire inscription. The monument is seventeen feet six inches in length, and contains inscriptions, as well as rude sculptures, on its four sides, the purport of which, appears to be a record of the transfer of landed property. Evidence is produced, which attributes the monument to the year 650, or thereabout, and the persons whose names are mentioned, are identified with historical personages of that period. From their length, these disquisitions would be tedious. The following is a literal translation of part of the inscription :
I, Offa, Voden's kinsman,
Succeeded to Engraved these characters. Ontb of sealty. May he perish. || Who punish the brcach of fidelity. Avoid, forsake, Ĝard was one of Haruld's Skalds, and is meotioned in the Saga. Ole was a relative of HARALD's, and deserted him to join his opponent.
I for the marriage feast
Christ was among
Many other inscribed rocks, on the banks of lakes and rivers in Norway, Sweden, and Denmark, have been deciphered ; and if such as the one last named, which exists in a country where antiquarian research has been carried to the utmost extent, has remained, until recently, undeciphered, why have we not reason to hope that those of our own country may yet be unravelled, and their contents made known? May not the Chaldeans, the Phoenicians, the Hindoos, the Japanese, or other eastern nations, renowned in antiquity, have visited our shores, and left these rude memorials of their visit? A wide field for antiquarian research in our own country is still open; and we trust that the growing interest in these subjects may yet lead to important discoveries. The vast tumuli and mounds of the West, the ancient fortified places, the numerous relics of a demi-civilized people, and the sculptured rocks, are yet involved in the most impenetrable mystery.
THOMAS CAMPBELL. NOW FIRST PUBLISHED
To Love, in my heart, I exclaimed l’other morning,
For weary's the wooing, ah! weary,
The god left my heart at its surly reflections,
Ah! Tom, 'l is all o'er with thy gay days!
But time's been so far from my wisdom enriching,
How weary is wisdom, how weary,
And should she be wroth, that my homage pursues her,
Would you have me behave more discreetly,
AN IMITATION, BY A LOVER, OF AN OLD ENGLISH POET.
I BELIEVE in this ballad of the fisherman. It is a rich ballad, and no doubt veracious; quite as great, in its beautiful and expressive simplicity, as the ballad of Chevy Chase. I would not irreverently deem it a mere parody. No! It is original - and American.
I think I have appropriately headed a dissertation upon clams with a scrap from one of our best national ballads; but I have a few words to say, by way of preface and explanation. And first, I would bespeak for honest Sam the reader's good-natured indulgence, and Christian charity. Condemn not his humble prayer to the moon, as strange, or ignorant, or superstitious; nor his simple vow, recorded as it was upon the alınanac, as a species of impiety. Sam, perhaps, had never been
where bells have knoll'd to church,' nor been taught to bend the knee in orthodox devotion. Of the ‘ Book of Books,' that sanctifier of human vows, Sam, perchance, had never heard, much less read; for in his day, Bible Societies were