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birds, the swelling sounds of the and can overcome the painful memory Eolian harp, and the melody of the of the past, or extingush gloomy forehuman voice, have some quality inhe- bodings of the future, by inducing a rent in them, which would render frame of mind adapted to the brighter them, even if heard for the first time, visions of hope and cheerfulness. Its universally delightful.* But the powers indeed have not been exaggecreaking of a door, or the jar produ- rated by the eloquent description of ed by the filing of a saw, can convey the poet. pleasure to no one, and must excite, on
• Hear how Timotheus' varied lays surprise, the contrary, universal antipathy and disgust. All the sounds," says While, at each change, the son of Lybian
And bid alternate passions fall and rise ; Cowper in one of his letters,' “ that
Jove nature utters are agreeable, at least in Now burns with glory, and then melts with this country. I should not, perhaps, love. find the roaring of lions in Africa, or of Now his fierce eyes with sparkling fury glow, bears in Russia, very pleasing ; but Now sighs steal out, and tears begin to flow. I know no beast in England, whose Persians and Greeks like turns of nature voice I do not account musical, save, And the world's Victor stood subdued by and except always, the braying of an
sound.” ass. The notes of all our birds and fowls please me, without one excep- It is to be observed, however, of the tion; and as to insects, if the black emotions occasioned by music, that beetle, and beetles indeed of all hues, they are referable only to a class ; and will keep out of my way, I have no that they have never that distinct apobjection to any of the rest; on the propriation which belongs to the creacontrary, in whatever key they sing, tions of the sister arts of poetry and from the gnat's fine treble to the bass painting. When we listen for the of the humble bee, I admire them all. first time to a simple melody, it is its Seriously, however (he continues), it general character only that we are strikes me as a very observable instance able to perceive. We are conscious of providential kindness to man, that that it kindles cheerful or melancholy such an exact accord has been con- feelings, without being able to refer trived between his ear, and the sounds them to any individual object. Now, with wbich, at least in a rural situa- I believe, there is no way in which tion, it is almost every moment visit- our sensibility can be thus affected, ed."
except by the association of certain • The source of the pleasure derived ideas with sounds, or successions of from music must be investigated, not sound, which we have formerly heard, by an examination of that which pre- not perhaps precisely the same in vails in polished society, complicated, kind, but belonging to the same class. as it is, with various refinements that And if we seek for the original proare not essential to it; but as it exists, totypes of those tones, which, by their in its simplest form, in those melodies rhythm and cadences, become capable which delight an untutored ear, and of exciting emotions, they will be which powerfully affect the heart, even found, I apprehend, in natural sounds, when they do not recall to the fancy as well as in natural expressions of scenes in which they have been heard, feeling, that were antecedent to all or events with which they have been oral language, and are universal to associated.
human nature. Cheerfulness naturally That music has the capacity of ex. disposes to quick and sudden changes citing lively emotions, must be decid- of tone and gesture; and melancholy ed by an appeal to the experience of has the effect of weakening the voice, those who are sensible to its pleasures. and of producing low and slowly meaFrom minds thus constituted, it can sured accents. The gentle and tender often banish one train of feelings, and feelings of pastoral life find a natural replace them with another of opposite expression, in tones corresponding complexion and character, especially with them in delicacy and softness. when the transition is made with skill And the idea of sublimity is almost and delicacy. It can soothe the an- necessarily annexed to sounds, of guish of sorrow and disappointment, which loudness is one but not the
only element, and which, though they See Knight on Taste + Letter cxvi. may have no strict analogy with the
roll of thunder, or the roaring of the tunes, he adds, so expressive to us cataract, have it yet in common with of religious solemnity, were, in the this impressive language of nature, French court, applied to licentious that they are associated with our first songs; and the fine melody adapted notions of magnitude and power. to the 100th psalm, was sung to a
Hence it is, that music is to be con- popular love ditty. An instance also sidered as an imitative art; but its occurs to my own recollection, of the imitations, to be a source of pleasure, successful adaptation of a fine song of must be extremely general, and must Purcell,* to the purpose of a psalm seldom indeed descend from the class tune. Conversions like these could to the individual. All such attempts never (as Mr Jackson has observed) at close resemblance fail of their pur- have succeeded, if the imitations of pose, and even become ridiculous. This music were more than extremely genehas been well illustrated by Mr Avi- ral, and if poetry had not the power son, in his excellent Essay on Musical of determining what idea the music Expression, in which, speaking of com- should express. posers addicted to too close imitation, A general accordance, however, behe observes, “ Were any of these gen- tween the language of poetry and the tlemen to set to music the following music adapted to it, may in all cases words of Milton,
be reasonably required. It is at least " Their songs
essential, that the air and the poetry Divide the night, and lift our thoughts to should not be at variance that a Heaven.'
lively melody, for example, should not It is probable, that on the word divide convey the language of grief or comhe would run a division on half a plaint'; and that a solemn or plaintive dozen bars ; and, in the subsequent air should not be associated with gay part of the sentence, he would not or exhilarating verse. Under the guidthink he had risen to the heights of ance of composers of judgment and sublimity till he had climbed to the taste, music and poetry are powervery top of his instrument, or at least ful auxiliaries of each other; for while as high as the human voice could fol- music exalts the sensibility of the low him." This servility of imitation mind, and by its general tendency has been also happily ridiculed by Swift, disposes it to lively emotions, poetry in his “ Proposals for a Cantata,” in gives vividness to our impressions, and which the words high and deep have turns to shape the indistinct images high and deep notes set to them; a of the fancy. series of short notes of equal length is That music was originally derived introduced to imitate sħivering and from the natural language of passion and shaking ; a sudden rise of the voice, emotion, is rendered highly probable, from a very low to a very high pitch, by inquiring into the history of the early to denote flying above the sky, with melodies of all countries that possess å several other droll contrivances of a national music.—“ All the songs of the similar nature.
Lowlands of Scotland, (says Dr BeatIt is on this principle, (namely, of a tie, in his excellent Essays on Poetry general resemblance only between the and Music) are expressive of love and tones of music and those expressive of tenderness, and of other emotions suitan ordinary feeling) that we are to ed to the tranqillity of pastoral life. explain some facts which have been The music adapted to them,” he is of stated by an ingenious writer, who opinion, “probably took its rise among was himself distinguished both as men who were real shepherds, and who a proficient in the science of music, actually felt the sensations and affections and an accomplished judge of its ex- whereof it is so very expressive.” Mr cellence. In a work, entitled " The Ritson is also of the same opinion. It Four Ages,” the late Mr Jackson of cannot (he observest) be reasonably Exeter has endeavoured to prove, that doubted, that many, if not most, or there is no natural alliance between even all the celebrated and popular poetry and music. He alleges, for Scottish melodies now extant, as disexample, that the song and chorus of tinguished from the Highland airs, “ Return, O Lord of Hosts," in the Oratorio of Sampson, might with equal success have been adapted to the com- • “Come unto these yellow sands." plaints of a lover. The old psalm + In his Essay on Scottish Song.
have been actually composed by the the artificial arrangements of society, natives of the Lowlands, speaking and are less frequently the objects of this thinking in the English language ; by definite and unconquerable inclination, shepherds tending their flocks, or by than such as are common to man in maids milking their ewes; by persons, the simplest state. These are frein short, altogether uncultivated, or, quently cultivated from the private deif one may be allowed the expression, light they afford, with only a seconduncorrupted by art, and influenced ary view to their effects on others, or only by the dictates of pure and simple in promoting our own fortune or renature.” It is a fact, also, in evidence putation; while these effects are the of the same theory, that the simple primary and ultimate causes for prosemelodies of Scotland have caught the cuting the former. No human being, prevailing spirit of the age in which for example, loves, for its own sake, the they were produced. “ During the study of Scotch law, which only becomes feuds of the borderers (it has been re- tolerable after long familiarity, through marked by the ingenious Mr M`Neill), means of which time begets a certain intestine wars and hostilities, tumult fondness for any thing not essentially and disorder, midnight plunder, mur- detestable. Poetry, on the other side, der, and calamity, were the animating presents, in many instances, a pure subjects which furnished these savage specimen of innate partiality, strengthsongsters with materials for their lays. ening in the face of opposition, and But the pastoral songs of the succeede triumphing over every species of dising age breathe only peace, harmony, couragement. and love; and incline us to believe, The bias last mentioned, indeed, is that universal safety, combined with generally the best marked, the earliest rural happiness and contentment, were developed, and most obstinate of all. the genuine incitements both of the Situations the most unfavourable, cirpoetry and music.
cumstances the most adverse to its (To be continued.)
growth, accumulated around with the ingenuity of apparent design, though they sometimes crush the individual,
seldom divert his course. Natures so OBSERVATIONS ON ORIGINAL GENIUS. highly endowed are not the proper
“ Discutitur autem iste torpor triplici subjects of chance or fortune. Instead auxilio: aut per calorem, aut per virtutem of being guided by accidents, they alicujus cognati corporis eminentem, aut per force them into the service of a premotum vividum et potentem ;"
conceived design, and often with so Bacon. much success, that superficial reasoners
suppose them to have been intended The fate of ordinary men, or at by providence for those very purposes least the nature of their pursuits, is to which human ingenuity has reducgenerally determined by fortuitous ed them. circumstances, by the current of which, A poetical mind, indeed, though feeble and irresolute spirits are borne produced in a barbarous age, or in a quietly through life. Of superior rude and backward part of the world, minds, it may be observed that the meets at first no very alarming obspring of action is within ; they are stacles, and may even be seduced into impelled by their own energies, and
verse by the seeming plainness of the directed by their own will. Besides, way. The materials of pleasure lie a particular determination uniformly on the surface, the poet therefore accompanies genius; for, though a needs to go little deeper than the strong mind thinks strongly on every painter ; the passions are best studied subject, universal excellence is never in our own bosoms, and none describe permitted to an individual, and there. them well, or control them in others, fore the wisdom of nature provides who draw their knowledge of them against that mediocrity which arises from a more distant source : finally, from diffusing the forces of great talents, invention is only a new combination bý placing them under the manage- from memory, and this is speedily enment of a ruling passion.
riched with great, agreeable, and surThe professions which originate in prising appearances, derived imme
diately from the workings, agitations, Notes to the Lyric Muse of Scotland. and changes, of nature and fortune around us. Even in the minor quali- retard, the fate of inferior productions. fications of diction and style, the diffi- The bistory of this author affords one culties are not insurmountable. The of the strongest instances I remember imperfections of an infant language of the superiority of nature to fortune; are greater as an instrument of thought of the great length to which perseverthan as a vehicle of feeling ; accord- ing talents can draw the slenderest ingly, when the historian and philoso- means. A few years ago Mr Hogg pher find it unfit for their purposes, was known only as an extraordinary contemporary poets often exhibit a shepherd, who composed humorous richness, strength, and propriety, songs for the rustics of Etterick Forest, which anticipate the improvements of or modulated softer love ditties on the several centuries.
banks of the Yarrow. About the same But there is a state of society more time Mr Scott was beginning to direct unpropitions, and situations infinitely all men's eyes to the BORDER, and the less inviting, than those now supposed. unequivocal sovereignty he soon esWhen taste has received the last tablished over the public attention, touches of refinement, and composi- rendered any thing like rivalship, in tion its highest graces, should the that department, absurd, and emulaspirit of poetry inflame an untutored tion eminently hazardous. But Hogg, and illiterate mind, what are his pros- like every poet born, was an enthusiast. pects of success ? Ease and retirement, Instead of being struck dumb either if not indispensible to the perfection with envy or despair, as some birds of his higher attributes of fancy and are said to be by the voice of the imagination, are clearly so when cor- nightingale,—with modest assurance, rectness and elegance are essential to which he has since vindicated, he his purpose of affording delight. His struck a lower key, and supported no first productions are necessarily es- mean accompaniment. The defects teemed coarse and faulty; and though of his education were obviated by applause may predominate, the just unremitting attention to the strength severity even of friendly criticism chas- and copiousness of our own language, tens his confidence and self-esteem, and his taste speedily corrected by an and consequently removes half his active admiration of refined writers. strength. Add to these, the effects Hence almost every one of his numeproduced by perpetual descents to the rous publications, up to that just mendead level of vulgar life, the ex- tioned, improves on its predecessor, haustion of strength and spirits by although to all appearance he had few employments uncongenial to his dis- to teach him, and fewer opportunities positions, or, worse than all, perhaps of learning. His first essays remind the subjection of the mind itself to us of our native poets in the sixteenth some dull monotonous pursuit, and century, The Queen's Wake does honyou will have an idea of the merits our to the present. I am happy to learn of such resolute persons as have that another edition of this work is at encountered these difficulties, and, in present publishing by subscription for defiance of them, attained the high- the benefit of the author, who, like est eminence in the art of which I most of his brethren, has had cause to am speaking, and be disposed to de- complain of fortune,-and, like too plore the far greater number who have many of them, with but partial reperished under them.
dress. The observations accompaOur own times, I take pleasure to nying the proposals, come, I under. observe, are not without one example stand, from a gentleman who has conof the first sort,-of one who, by the tributed much to the reputation of mere force of natural parts, has raised this country and age, and to the de his name from obscurity to the first light of all the lovers of poetry and rank, and divided the public favour polite letters,—not only by his own with others equally endowed, but pen, but also by an affectionate atmuch more happily circumstanced tention to the rising merit of others. than himself. I allude to the author There is nothing, I think, more pleasof The Queen's Wake, a work of which ing than such cordial friendship and we now judge without finding it ne- esteem between men distinguished by cessary to make allowances for the ac- similar excellencies, and the rather sidents of education and training, because the experience of former times sich sometimes smooth, but seldom renders it unexpected.
THE STEWARTS OP ALLANTON.
upon the Clyde, near Glasgow: That SITTING BELOW THE SALT," AND
Sir Allan Stewart of Daldowie (grand
son to Sir Robert,) obtained, on acAudi alteram partem.
count of his valour in 1385, from King
Robert II., his father's second cousin, MR EDITOR,
the rank of knight bann-ret, together As it was once my intention to with the honourable addition of the write an account of the antiquities of lion-passant, or English lion, to his the midland counties of this king- paternal coat armorial ;-as also, on dom, and as I made some investiga- the same account, the lands of Allantions for that purpose, both in the ton, in Allcathmuir, from the church public archives and the repositories of in 1420. Moreover, that I had seen individuals, I was surprised to see, in charters and seasines in the possession your useful Magazine for April last, of his posterity, from 1460 and 1492 (in a curious disquisition on the an- downwards ; since which time they cient custom of “ Sitting below the have intermarried with some of the Salt,") a very erroneous account of a first families in the kingdom. Knowing family in Lanarkshire, of great anti- these things as I did, ! own I was quity and respectability, I mean that surprised to observe his descendant, of Stewart of ALLANTON. On look- Sir Walter Stewart of Daldowie and ing over a list, which I made at the Allanton, described, in 1650, as " the time, of the most distinguished names goodman of Allanton, and of a very in that county, I find this family mean family upon Clyde" !!! See classed with the Douglasses, the Ha- Memoirs, vol. II. p. 380.* miltons, the Lockharts of Lee, and On applying to the worthy and some others, who, as ancient barons learned Baronet who now represents and landholders, had 'had possessions this family, and inquiring whether there from a very remote period. he had seen the article in your Maga
The passage in the article to whichzine, he replied in the affirmative, I allude is taken from a book of some and laughed very good-naturedly at curiosity, " The Memorie, or Memoirs the account, observing, that it was of the Somervilles," written by the quite fair from the pen of a Somereleventh Lord Somerville about 1680, ville, and as a production of the period. and edited two years since by that In regard to the pretensions to supeindefatigable writer, Mr Walter Scott rior descent assumed by Lord SomerIn this publication, Sir Walter Stewart ville on the ground merely of his own of Daldowie and Allanton, and his statement, and as an apt counterpart brother, Sir James Stewart of Coltness, to the above delineation, he reminded are represented to be of a family of me of the well-known dialogue which Yeomen or Fewars, whose ancestors took place between the lion and the never had, until their day, (the mid- man in the fable, when each contended dle of the seventeenth century,)“ Sat for the superiority, and which I need above the salt foot.” And further, not here repeat. It was on this occait is stated, seemingly as an extraor- sion that the former pointed out to dinary honour done to them, that the king of the forest, as a conclusive they actually did sit above the salt at argument in his own favour, a paintthe table of Somerville of Cam- ing, in which was represented a lion nethan, “ which for ordinary every Saboth they dyned at, as most of the
• On this and other passages, the editor, honest men within the parish of any Mr Scott, observes in a note, (vol I. p. 169,) account.” See Memoirs, vol. II. p. that “ Remarks escape from the author's 394.
pen, unjustly derogatory to this ancient Now, sir, I happened to know, that branch of the House of STEWART, to this family came into Lanarkshire which he himself was allied by the marriage from Kyle and Renfrew, the ancient of Janet Stewart of Darnley with the anseat of the Lord High Stewards, as
cestor of Sir Thomas Somerville." In this early as 1290, and is lineally descend- observation I entirely agree with Mr Scott. ed from Sir Robert Stewart, whose But he might have added, with equal truth,
that neither friend nor foe, neither relative father, Sir John Stewart of Bonkle, by blood nor ally by marriage, could es(who was killed at the battle of Fal- cape the abuse of this irritable lord, if he kirk, anno 1298,) bestowed upon him only differed from him in religious and poin patrimony the barony of Daldowie, litical sentiments. Vol. I.