Spare Hours
by John Brown
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"A lady, resident in Devonshire, going into one of her parlors, discovered a young ass, who had found his way into the room, and carefully closed the door upon himself. He had evidently not been long in this situation before he had nibbled a part of Cicero's Orations, and eaten nearly all the index of a folio edition of Seneca in Latin, a large part of a volume of La Bruyere's Maxims in French, and several pages of Cecilia. He had done no other mischief whatever, and not a vestige remained of the leaves that he had devoured."—PIERCE EGAN.

"The treatment of the illustrious dead by the quick, often reminds me of the gravedigger in Hamlet, and the skull of poor defunct Yorick."—W. H. B.

"Multi ad sapientiam pervenire potuissent, nisi se jam pervenisse putassent."

"There's nothing so amusing as human nature, but then you must have some one to laugh with."



If thou be a severe sour-complexioned man, then I here disallow thee to be a competent judge.—IZAAK WALTON


Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1861, by TICKNOR AND FIELDS, In the Clerk's Office of the District Court for the District of Massachusetts



The author of "Rab and his Friends" scarcely needs an introduction to American readers. By this time many have learned to agree with a writer in the "North British Review" that "Rab" is, all things considered, the most perfect prose narrative since Lamb's "Rosamond Gray."

A new world of doctors, clergymen, shepherds, and carriers is revealed in the writings of this cheerful Edinburgh scholar, who always brings genuine human feeling, strong sense, and fine genius to the composition of his papers. Dogs he loves with an enthusiasm to be found nowhere else in canine literature. He knows intimately all a cur means when he winks his eye or wags his tail, so that the whole barking race,—terrier, mastiff, spaniel, and the rest,—finds in him an affectionate and interested friend. His genial motto seems to run thus—"I cannot understand that morality which excludes animals from human sympathy, or releases man from the debt and obligation he owes to them."

With the author's consent we have rejected from his two series of "Horae Subsecivae" the articles on strictly professional subjects, and have collected into this volume the rest of his admirable papers in that work. The title, "Spare Hours," is also adopted with the author's sanction.

Dr. Brown is an eminent practising physician in Edinburgh, with small leisure for literary composition, but no one has stronger claims to be ranked among the purest and best writers of our day.

BOSTON, December 1861.




In that delightful and provoking book, "THE DOCTOR, &c.," Southey says: "'Prefaces,' said Charles Blount, Gent., 'Prefaces,' according to this flippant, ill-opinioned, and unhappy man, 'ever were, and still are, but of two sorts, let the mode and fashions vary as they please,—let the long peruke succeed the godly cropt hair; the cravat, the ruff; presbytery, popery; and popery, presbytery again,—yet still the author keeps to his old and wonted method of prefacing; when at the beginning of his book he enters, either with a halter round his neck, submitting himself to his readers' mercy whether he shall be hanged or no, or else, in a huffing manner, he appears with the halter in his hand, and threatens to hang his reader, if he gives him not his good word. This, with the excitement of friends to his undertaking, and some few apologies for the want of time, books, and the like, are the constant and usual shams of all scribblers, ancient and modern.' This was not true then," says Southey, "nor is it now." I differ from Southey, in thinking there is some truth in both ways of wearing the halter. For though it be neither manly nor honest to affect a voluntary humility (which is after all, a sneaking vanity, and would soon show itself if taken at its word), any more than it is well-bred, or seemly to put on (for it generally is put on) the "huffing manner," both such being truly "shams,"—there is general truth in Mr. Blount's flippancies.

Every man should know and lament (to himself) his own shortcomings—should mourn over and mend, as he best can, the "confusions of his wasted youth;" he should feel how ill he has put out to usury the talent given him by the Great Taskmaster—how far he is from being "a good and faithful servant;" and he should make this rather understood than expressed by his manner as a writer; while at the same time, every man should deny himself the luxury of taking his hat off to the public, unless he has something to say, and has done his best to say it aright; and every man should pay not less attention to the dress in which his thoughts present themselves, than he would to that of his person on going into company.

Bishop Butler, in his "Preface to his Sermons," in which there is perhaps more solid living sense than in the same number of words anywhere else after making the distinction between "obscurity" and "perplexity and confusion of thought,"—the first being in the subject, the others in its expression, says,—"confusion and perplexity are, in writing, indeed without excuse, because any one may, if he pleases, know whether he understands or sees through what he is about, and it is unpardonable in a man to lay his thoughts before others, when he is conscious that he himself does not know whereabouts he is, or how the matter before him stands. It is coming abroad in disorder, which he ought to be dissatisfied to find himself in at home."

There should therefore be in his Preface, as in the writer himself, two elements. A writer should have some assurance that he has something to say, and this assurance should, in the true sense, not the Milesian, be modest.

* * * * *

I have to apologize for bringing in "Rab and his Friends." I did so, remembering well the good I got then, as a man and as a doctor. It let me see down into the depths of our common nature, and feel the strong and gentle touch that we all need, and never forget, which makes the world kin; and it gave me an opportunity of introducing, in a way which he cannot dislike, for he knows it is simply true, my old master and friend, Professor Syme, whose indenture I am thankful I possess, and whose first wheels I delight in thinking my apprentice-fee purchased, thirty years ago. I remember as if it were yesterday, his giving me the first drive across the west shoulder of Corstorphine Hill. On starting, he said, "John, we'll do one thing at a time, and there will be no talk." I sat silent and rejoicing, and can remember the very complexion and clouds of that day and that matchless view: Damyat and Benledi resting couchant at the gate of the Highlands, with the huge Grampians, immane pecus, crowding down into the plain.

This short and simple story shows, that here, as everywhere else, personally, professionally, and publicly, reality is his aim and his attainment. He is one of the men—they are all too few—who desire to be on the side of truth more than to have truth on their side; and whose personal and private worth are always better understood than expressed. It has been happily said of him, that he never wastes a word, or a drop of ink, or a drop of blood; and his is the strongest, exactest, truest, immediatest, safest intellect, dedicated by its possessor to the surgical cure of mankind, I have ever yet met with. He will, I firmly believe, leave an inheritance of good done, and mischief destroyed, of truth in theory and in practice established, and of error in the same exposed and ended, such as no one since John Hunter has been gifted to bequeath to his fellow-men. As an instrument for discovering truth, I have never seen his perspicacity equalled; his mental eye is achromatic, and admits into the judging mind a pure white light, and records an undisturbed, uncolored image, undiminished and unenlarged in its passage; and he has the moral power, courage, and conscience, to use and devote such an inestimable instrument aright. I need hardly add, that the story of "Rab and his Friends" is in all essentials strictly matter of fact.

There is an odd sort of point, if it can be called a point, on which I would fain say something—and that is an occasional outbreak of sudden, and it may be felt, untimely humorousness. I plead guilty to this, sensible of the tendency in me of the merely ludicrous to intrude, and to insist on being attended to, and expressed: it is perhaps too much the way with all of us now-a-days, to be forever joking. Mr. Punch, to whom we take off our hats, grateful for his innocent and honest fun, especially in his Leech, leads the way; and our two great novelists, Thackeray and Dickens, the first especially, are, in the deepest and highest sense, essentially humorists,—the best, nay, indeed the almost only good thing in the latter, being his broad and wild fun; Swiveller, and the Dodger, and Sam Weller, and Miggs, are more impressive far to my taste than the melo-dramatic, utterly unreal Dombey, or his strumous and hysterical son, or than all the later dreary trash of "Bleak House," &c.

My excuse is, that these papers are really what they profess to be, done at bye-hours. Dulce est desipere, when in its fit place and time. Moreover, let me tell my young doctor friends, that a cheerful face, and step, and neckcloth, and button-hole, and an occasional hearty and kindly joke, a power of executing and setting agoing a good laugh, are stock in our trade not to be despised. The merry heart does good like a medicine. Your pompous man, and your selfish man, don't laugh much, or care for laughter; it discomposes the fixed grandeur of the one, and has little room in the heart of the other, who is literally self-contained. My Edinburgh readers will recall many excellent jokes of their doctors—"Lang Sandie Wood," Dr. Henry Davidson our Guy Patin and better, &c.

I may give an instance, when a joke was more and better than itself. A comely young wife, the "cynosure" of her circle, was in bed, apparently dying from swelling and inflammation of the throat, an inaccessible abscess stopping the way; she could swallow nothing; everything had been tried. Her friends were standing round her bed in misery and helplessness. "Try her wi' a compliment," said her husband, in a not uncomic despair. She had genuine humor, as well as he; and as physiologists know, there is a sort of mental tickling which is beyond and above control, being under the reflex system, and instinctive as well as sighing. She laughed with her whole body and soul, and burst the abscess, and was well.

Humor, if genuine (and if not, it is not humor), is the very flavor of the spirit, its rich and fragrant ozmazome—having in its aroma something of everything in the man, his expressed juice; wit is but the laughing flower of the intellect or the turn of speech, and is often what we call a "gum-flower," and looks well when dry. Humor is, in a certain sense, involuntary in its origin in one man, and in its effect upon another; it is systemic, and not local.

Sydney Smith, in his delightful and valuable Sketches of Lectures on Moral Philosophy, to which I have referred, makes a touching and impressive confession of the evil to the rest of a man's nature from the predominant power and cultivation of the ludicrous. I believe Charles Lamb could have told a like, and as true, but sadder story. He started on life with all the endowments of a great, ample, and serious nature, and he ended in being little else than the incomparable joker and humorist, and was in the true sense, "of large discourse."[1]

[1] Many good and fine things have been said of this wonderful and unique genius, but I know none better or finer than these lines by my friend John Hunter of Craigcrook. They are too little known, and no one will be anything but pleased to read them, except their author. The third line might have been Elia's own:—

"... Humor, wild wit, Quips, cranks, puns, sneers,—with clear sweet thought profound;— And stinging jests, with honey for the wound,"— The subtlest lines of ALL fine powers, split To their last films, then marvellously spun In magic web, whose million hues are ONE!"

I knew one man who was almost altogether and absolutely comic, and yet a man of sense, fidelity, courage, and worth, but over his entire nature the comic ruled supreme—the late Sir Adam Ferguson, whose very face was a breach of solemnity; I dare say, even in sleep he looked a wag. This was the way in which everything appeared to him first, and often last too, with a serious enough middle saw him not long before his death, when he was of great age and knew he was dying; there was no levity in his manner, or thoughtlessness about his state; he was kind, and shrewd as ever; but how he flashed out with utter merriment when he got hold of a joke, or rather when it got hold of him, and shook him, not an inch of his body was free of its power—it possessed him, not he it. The first attack was on showing me a calotype of himself by the late Adamson (of Hill and Adamson; the Vandyke and Raeburn of photography), in the corner of which he had written, with a hand trembling with age and fun, "Adam's-sun fecit"—it came back upon him and tore him without mercy.

Then, his blood being up, he told me a story of his uncle, the great Dr. Black the chemist; no one will grudge the reading of it in my imperfect record, though it is to the reality what reading music is to hearing it.

Dr. Black, when Professor of Chemistry in Edinburgh University, had a gruff old man as his porter, a James Alston. James was one of the old school of chemistry, and held by phlogiston, but for no better reason than the endless trouble the new-fangled discoveries brought upon him in the way of apparatus.

The Professor was lecturing on Hydrogen Gas, and had made arrangements for showing its lightness, what our preceptor, Dr. Charles Hope, called, in his lofty way, its "principle of absolute levity." He was greatly excited, the good old man of genius. James was standing behind his chair, ready and sulky. His master told his young friends that the bladder he had filled with the gas must, on principle, ascend; but that they would see practically if it did, and he cut the string. Up it rushed, amid the shouts and upturned faces of the boys, and the quiet joy of their master; James regarding it with a glum curiosity.

Young Adam Ferguson was there, and left at the end of the hour with the rest, but finding he had forgotten his stick, went back; in the empty room, he found James perched upon a lofty and shaky ladder, trying, amid much perspiration, and blasphemy, and want of breath, to hit down his enemy, who rose at each stroke—the old battling with the new. Sir Adam's reproduction of this scene, his voice and screams of rapture, I shall never forget.

Let me give another pleasant story of Dr. Black and Sir Adam, which our Principal (Dr. Lee) delights to tell; it is merely its bones. The doctor sent him to the bank for L5—four in notes, and one in silver; then told him that he must be paid for his trouble with a shilling, and next proceeded to give him good advice about the management of money, particularly recommending a careful record of every penny spent, holding the shilling up before him all the time. During this address, Sir Adam was turning over in his mind all the trash he would be able to purchase with the shilling, and his feeling may be imagined when the doctor finally returned it to his own pocket.

It only remains now for me to thank my cousin and life-long friend, John Taylor Brown, the author of the tract on "St. Paul's Thorn in the Flesh." I am sure my readers will thank me not less heartily than I now do him. The theory that the thorn of the great apostle was an affection of the eyes is not new; it will be found in "Hannah More's Life," and in "Conybeare and Howson;" but his argument and his whole treatment, I have reason to believe, from my father and other competent judges, is thoroughly original; it is an exquisite monograph, and to me most instructive and striking. Every one will ask why such a man has not written more—a question my fastidious friend will find is easier asked than answered.

* * * * *

This Preface was written, and I had a proof ready for his pencil, when I was summoned to the death of him to whom I owe my life. He had been dying for months, but he and I hoped to have got and to have given into his hands a copy of these Horae, the correction of which had often whiled away his long hours of languor and pain. God thought otherwise. I shall miss his great knowledge, his loving and keen eye—his ne quid nimis—his sympathy—himself. Let me be thankful that it was given to me assidere valetudini, fovere deficientem, satiari vultu, complexu.

Si quis piorum manibus locus; si, ut sapientibus placet, non cum corpore extinguuntur magnae animae; placide quiescas!

Or, in more sacred and hopeful words, which, put there at my father's request, may be found at the close of the paper on young Hallam: "O man greatly beloved, go thou thy way till the end; for thou shalt rest, and stand in thy lot at the end of the days."

It is not for a son to speak what he thinks of his father so soon after his death. I leave him now with a portrait of his spiritual lineaments, by Dr. Cairns,—which is to them what a painting by Velasquez and Da Vinci combined would have been to his bodily presence.

"As he was of the Pauline type of mind, his Christianity ran into the same mould. A strong, intense, and vehement nature, with masculine intellect and unyielding will, he accepted the Bible in its literal simplicity as an absolute revelation, and then showed the strength of his character in subjugating his whole being to this decisive influence, and in projecting the same convictions into other minds. He was a believer in the sense of the old Puritans, and, amid the doubt and skepticism of the nineteenth century, held as firmly as any of them by the doctrines of atonement and grace. He had most of the idiosyncrasy of Baxter, though not without the contemplation of Howe. The doctrines of Calvinism, mitigated but not renounced, and received simply as dictates of Heaven, without any effort or hope to bridge over their inscrutable depths by philosophical theories, he translated into a fervent, humble, and resolutely active life.

"There was a fountain of tenderness in his nature as well as a sweep of impetuous indignation; and the one drawn out, and the other controlled by his Christian faith, made him at once a philanthropist and a reformer, and both in the highest departments of human interest. The union of these ardent elements, and of a highly devotional temperament, not untouched with melancholy, with the patience of the scholar, and the sobriety of the critic, formed the singularity and almost the anomaly of his personal character. These contrasts were tempered by the discipline of experience; and his life, both as a man and a Christian, seemed to become more rich, genial, and harmonious as it approached its close."—Scotsman, October 20th.

J. B.

23, RUTLAND STREET, October 30, 1858.


I have to thank the public and my own special craft cordially and much for their reception of these Idle Hours—Brown Studies, as a friendly wag calls them—and above all, for their taking to their hearts that great old dog and his dead friends,—for all which the one friend who survives thanks them. There is no harm and some good in letting our sympathy and affection go forth without stint on such objects, dead and homely though they be.

When I think of that noble head, with its look and eye of boundless affection and pluck, simplicity and single-heartedness, I feel what it would be for us, who call ourselves the higher animals, to be in our ways as simple, affectionate, and true, as that old mastiff; and in the highest of all senses, I often think of what Robert Burns says somewhere, "Man is the god of the dog." It would be well for man if his worship were as immediate and instinctive—as absolute as the dog's. Did we serve our God with half the zeal Rab served his, we might trust to sleep as peacefully in our graves as he does in his. When James turned his angry eye and raised his quick voice and foot, his worshipper slunk away, humbled and afraid, angry with himself for making him angry; anxious by any means to crouch back into his favor, and a kind look or word. Is that the way we take His displeasure, even when we can't think, as Rab couldn't, we were immediately to blame? It is, as the old worthy says, something to trust our God in the dark, as the dog does his.

A dear and wise and exquisite child, drew a plan for a headstone on the grave of a favorite terrier, and she had in it the words "WHO died" on such a day; the older and more worldly-minded painter put in "WHICH;" and my friend and "Bossy's" said to me, with some displeasure, as we were examining the monuments, "Wasn't he a Who as much as they?" and wasn't she righter than they? and

"Quis desiderio sit aut pudor aut modus Tam cari capitis"—

as that of "Rab."

With regard to the quotations—and the much Latin and some Greek, the world of men, and especially of women, is dead against me. I am sorry for it. As he said, who was reminded in an argument that the facts were against him, "So much the worse for them," and I may add for me. Latin and Greek are not dead—in one sense, they are happily immortal; but the present age is doing its worst to kill them, and much of their own best good and pleasure.

23, RUTLAND STREET, October 13, 1859.


To MY TWO FRIENDS at Busby, Renfrewshire, In Remembrance of a Journey from Carstairs Junction to Toledo and back, The Story of "Rab and his Friends" is inscribed.

Four-and-thirty years ago, Bob Ainslie and I were coming up Infirmary Street from the Edinburgh High School, our heads together, and our arms intertwisted, as only lovers and boys know how, or why.

When we got to the top of the street, and turned north, we espied a crowd at the Tron Church. "A dog-fight!" shouted Bob, and was off; and so was I, both of us all but praying that it might not be over before we got up! And is not this boy-nature? and human nature too? and don't we all wish a house on fire not to be out before we see it? Dogs like fighting; old Isaac says they "delight" in it, and for the best of all reasons; and boys are not cruel because they like to see the fight. They see three of the great cardinal virtues of dog or man—courage, endurance, and skill—in intense action. This is very different from a love of making dogs fight, and enjoying, and aggravating, and making gain by their pluck. A boy—be he ever so fond himself of fighting, if he be a good boy, hates and despises all this, but he would have run off with Bob and me fast enough: it is a natural, and a not wicked interest, that all boys and men have in witnessing intense energy in action.

Does any curious and finely-ignorant woman wish to know how Bob's eye at a glance announced a dog-fight to his brain? He did not, he could not see the dogs fighting; it was a flash of an inference, a rapid induction. The crowd round a couple of dogs fighting, is a crowd masculine mainly, with an occasional active, compassionate woman, fluttering wildly round the outside, and using her tongue and her hands freely upon the men, as so many "brutes;" it is a crowd annular, compact, and mobile; a crowd centripetal, having its eyes and its heads all bent downwards and inwards, to one common focus.

Well, Bob and I are up, and find it is not over: a small thoroughbred, white bull-terrier, is busy throttling a large shepherd's dog, unaccustomed to war, but not to be trifled with. They are hard at it; the scientific little fellow doing his work in great style, his pastoral enemy fighting wildly, but with the sharpest of teeth and a great courage. Science and breeding, however, soon had their own; the Game Chicken, as the premature Bob called him, working his way up, took his final grip of poor Yarrow's throat,—and he lay gasping and done for. His master, a brown, handsome, big young shepherd from Tweedsmuir, would have liked to have knocked down any man, would "drink up Esil, or eat a crocodile," for that part, if he had a chance: it was no use kicking the little dog; that would only make him hold the closer. Many were the means shouted out in mouthfuls, of the best possible ways of ending it. "Water!" but there was none near, and many cried for it who might have got it from the well at Blackfriars Wynd. "Bite the tail!" and a large, vague, benevolent, middle-aged man, more desirous than wise, with some struggle got the bushy end of Yarrow's tail into his ample mouth, and bit it with all his might. This was more than enough for the much-enduring, much-perspiring shepherd, who, with a gleam of joy over his broad visage, delivered a terrific facer upon our large, vague, benevolent, middle-aged friend,—who went down like a shot.

Still the Chicken holds; death not far off. "Snuff! a pinch of snuff!" observed a calm, highly-dressed young buck, with an eye-glass in his eye. "Snuff, indeed!" growled the angry crowd, affronted and glaring. "Snuff! a pinch of snuff!" again observes the buck but with more urgency; whereon were produced several open boxes, and from a mull which may have been at Culloden, he took a pinch, knelt down, and presented it to the nose of the Chicken. The laws of physiology and of snuff take their course; the Chicken sneezes, and Yarrow is free!

The young pastoral giant stalks off with Yarrow in his arms,—comforting him.

But the Bull Terrier's blood is up, and his soul unsatisfied; he grips the first dog he meets, and discovering she is not a dog, in Homeric phrase, he makes a brief sort of amende, and is off. The boys, with Bob and me at their head, are after him: down Niddry Street he goes, bent on mischief; up the Cowgate like an arrow—Bob and I, and our small men, panting behind.

There, under the single arch of the South Bridge, is a huge mastiff, sauntering down the middle of the causeway, as if with his hands in his pockets: he is old, gray, brindled, as big as a little Highland bull, and has the Shaksperian dewlaps shaking as he goes.

The Chicken makes straight at him, and fastens on his throat. To our astonishment, the great creature does nothing but stand still, hold himself up, and roar—yes, roar; a long, serious, remonstrative roar. How is this? Bob and I are up to them. He is muzzled! The bailies had proclaimed a general muzzling, and his master, studying strength and economy mainly, had encompassed his huge jaws in a home-made apparatus, constructed out of the leather of some ancient breechin. His mouth was open as far as it could; his lips curled up in rage—a sort of terrible grin; his teeth gleaming, ready, from out the darkness; the strap across his mouth tense as a bowstring; his whole frame stiff with indignation and surprise; his roar asking us all round; "Did you ever see the like of this?" He looked a statue of anger and astonishment, done in Aberdeen granite.

We soon had a crowd: the Chicken held on. "A knife!" cried Bob; and a cobbler gave him his knife: you know the kind of knife, worn away obliquely to a point, and always keen. I put its edge to the tense leather; it ran before it; and then!—one sudden jerk of that enormous head, a sort of dirty mist about his mouth, no noise,—and the bright and fierce little fellow is dropped, limp, and dead. A solemn pause: this was more than any of us had bargained for. I turned the little fellow over, and saw he was quite dead; the mastiff had taken him by the small of the back like a rat, and broken it.

He looked down at his victim appeased, ashamed, and amazed; snuffed him all over, stared at him, and taking a sudden thought, turned round and trotted off. Bob took the dead dog up, and said, "John, we'll bury him after tea." "Yes," said I, and was off after the mastiff. He made up the Cowgate at a rapid swing; he had forgotten some engagement. He turned up the Candlemaker Row, and stopped at the Harrow Inn.

There was a carrier's cart ready to start, and a keen, thin, impatient, black-a-vised little man, his hand at his gray horse's head, looking about angrily for something. "Rab, ye thief!" said he, aiming a kick at my great friend, who drew cringing up, and avoiding the heavy shoe with more agility than dignity, and watching his master's eye, slunk dismayed under the cart,—his ears down, and as much as he had of tail down too.

What a man this must be—thought I—to whom my tremendous hero turns tail! The carrier saw the muzzle hanging, cut and useless, from his neck, and I eagerly told him the story, which Bob and I always thought, and still think, Homer, or King David, or Sir Walter alone were worthy to rehearse. The severe little man was mitigated, and condescended to say, "Rab, my man, puir Rabbie,"—whereupon the stump of a tail rose up, the ears were cocked, the eyes filled, and were comforted; the two friends were reconciled. "Hupp!" and a stroke of the whip were given to Jess; and off went the three.

* * * * *

Bob and I buried the Game Chicken that night (we had not much of a tea) in the back-green of his house in Melville Street, No. 17, with considerable gravity and silence; and being at the time in the Iliad, and, like all boys, Trojans, we called him Hector of course.

* * * * *

Six years have passed,—a long time for a boy and a dog: Bob Ainslie is off to the wars; I am a medical student, and clerk at Minto House Hospital.

Rab I saw almost every week, on the Wednesday; and we had much pleasant intimacy. I found the way to his heart by frequent scratching of his huge head, and an occasional bone. When I did not notice him he would plant himself straight before me, and stand wagging that bud of a tail, and looking up, with his head a little to the one side. His master I occasionally saw; he used to call me "Maister John," but was laconic as any Spartan.

One fine October afternoon, I was leaving the hospital, when I saw the large gate open, and in walked Rab, with that great and easy saunter of his. He looked as if taking general possession of the place; like the Duke of Wellington entering a subdued city, satiated with victory and peace. After him came Jess, now white from age, with her cart; and in it a woman, carefully wrapped up,—the carrier leading the horse anxiously, and looking back. When he saw me, James (for his name was James Noble) made a curt and grotesque "boo," and said, "Maister John, this is the mistress; she's got a trouble in her breest—some kind o' an income we're thinking'."

By this time I saw the woman's face; she was sitting on a sack filled with straw, her husband's plaid round her, and his big-coat with its large white metal buttons, over her feet.

I never saw a more unforgettable face—pale, serious, lonely,[2] delicate, sweet, without being at all what we call fine. She looked sixty, and had on a mutch, white as snow, with its black ribbon; her silvery, smooth hair setting off her dark-gray eyes—eyes such as one sees only twice or thrice in a lifetime, full of suffering, full also of the overcoming of it: her eyebrows black and delicate, and her mouth firm, patient, and contented, which few mouths ever are.

[2] It is not easy giving this look by one word; it was expressive of her being so much of her life alone.

As I have said, I never saw a more beautiful countenance, or one more subdued to settled quiet. "Ailie," said James, "this is Maister John, the young doctor; Rab's freend, ye ken. We often speak aboot you, doctor." She smiled, and made a movement, but said nothing; and prepared to come down, putting her plaid aside and rising. Had Solomon, in all his glory, been handing down the Queen of Sheba at his palace gate, he could not have done it more daintily, more tenderly, more like a gentleman, than did James the Howgate carrier, when he lifted down Ailie his wife. The contrast of his small, swarthy, weather-beaten, keen, worldly face to hers—pale, subdued, and beautiful—was something wonderful. Rab looked on concerned and puzzled, but ready for anything that might turn up,—were it to strangle the nurse, the porter, or even me. Ailie and he seemed great friends.

"As I was sayin' she's got a kind o' trouble in her breest, doctor; wull ye tak' a look at it?" We walked into the consulting-room, all four; Rab grim and comic, willing to be happy and confidential if cause could be shown, willing also to be the reverse, on the same terms. Ailie sat down, undid her open gown and her lawn handkerchief round her neck, and without a word, showed me her right breast. I looked at and examined it carefully,-she and James watching me, and Rab eying all three. What could I say? there it was, that had once been so soft, so shapely, so white, so gracious and bountiful, so "full of all blessed conditions,"—hard as a stone, a centre of horrid pain, making that pale face, with its gray, lucid, reasonable eyes, and its sweet resolved mouth, express the full measure of suffering overcome. Why was that gentle, modest, sweet woman, clean and lovable, condemned by God to bear such a burden?

I got her away to bed. "May Rab and me bide?" said James. "You may; and Rab, if he will behave himself." "I'se warrant he's do that, doctor;" and in slank the faithful beast. I wish you could have seen him. There are no such dogs now. He belonged to a lost tribe. As I have said, he was brindled and gray like Rubislaw granite; his hair short, hard, and close, like a lion's; his body thick set, like a little bull—a sort of compressed Hercules of a dog. He must have been ninety pounds' weight, at the least; he had a large blunt head; his muzzle black as night, his mouth blacker than any night, a tooth or two—being all he had—gleaming out of his jaws of darkness. His head was scarred with the records of old wounds, a sort of series of fields of battle all over it; one eye out, one ear cropped as close as was Archbishop Leighton's father's; the remaining eye had the power of two; and above it, and in constant communication with it, was a tattered rag of an ear, which was forever unfurling itself, like an old flag; and then that bud of a tail, about one inch long, if it could in any sense be said to be long, being as broad as long—the mobility, the instantaneousness of that bud were very funny and surprising, and its expressive twinklings and winkings, the intercommunications between the eye, the ear, and it, were of the oddest and swiftest.

Rab had the dignity and simplicity of great size; and having fought his way all along the road to absolute supremacy, he was as mighty in his own line as Julius Caesar or the Duke of Wellington, and had the gravity[3] of all great fighters.

[3] A Highland game-keeper, when asked why a certain terrier, of singular pluck, was so much more solemn than the other dogs, said, "Oh, Sir, life's full o' sairiousness to him—he just never can get enuff o' fechtin'."

You must have often observed the likeness of certain men to certain animals, and of certain dogs to men. Now, I never looked at Rab without thinking of the great Baptist preacher, Andrew Fuller.[4] The same large, heavy, menacing, combative, sombre, honest countenance, the same deep inevitable eye, the same look,—as of thunder asleep, but ready,—neither a dog nor a man to be trifled with.

[4] Fuller was, in early life, when a farmer lad at Soham, famous as a boxer; not quarrelsome, but not without "the stern delight" a man of strength and courage feels in their exercise. Dr. Charles Stewart, of Dunearn, whose rare gifts and graces as a physician, a divine, a scholar, and a gentleman, live only in the memory of those few who knew and survive him, liked to tell how Mr. Fuller used to say, that when he was in the pulpit, and saw a buirdly man come along the passage, he would instinctively draw himself up, measure his imaginary antagonist, and forecast how he would deal with him, his hands meanwhile condensing into fists, and tending to "square." He must have been a hard hitter if he boxed as he preached—what "The Fancy" would call "an ugly customer."

Next day, my master, the surgeon, examined Ailie. There was no doubt it must kill her, and soon. It could be removed—it might never return—it would give her speedy relief—she should have it done. She curtsied, looked at James, and said, "When?" "To-morrow," said the kind surgeon—a man of few words. She and James and Rab and I retired. I noticed that he and she spoke little, but seemed to anticipate everything in each other. The following day, at noon, the students came in, hurrying up the great stair. At the first landing-place, on a small well-known blackboard, was a bit of paper fastened by wafers, and many remains of old wafers beside it. On the paper were the words,—"An operation to-day. J. B. Clerk."

Up ran the youths, eager to secure good places: in they crowded, full of interest and talk. "What's the case?" "Which side is it?"

Don't think them heartless; they are neither better nor worse than you or I; they get over their professional horrors, and into their proper work—and in them pity—as an emotion, ending in itself or at best in tears and a long-drawn breath, lessens, while pity as a motive, is quickened, and gains power and purpose. It is well for poor human nature that it is so.

The operating theatre is crowded; much talk and fun, and all the cordiality and stir of youth. The surgeon with his staff of assistants is there. In comes Ailie: one look at her quiets and abates the eager students. That beautiful old woman is too much for them; they sit down, and are dumb, and gaze at her. These rough boys feel the power of her presence. She walks in quickly, but without haste; dressed in her mutch, her neckerchief, her white dimity short-gown, her black bombazine petticoat, showing her white worsted stockings and her carpet-shoes. Behind her was James with Rab. James sat down in the distance, and took that huge and noble head between his knees. Rab looked perplexed and dangerous; forever cocking his ear and dropping it as fast.

Ailie stepped up on a seat, and laid herself on the table, as her friend the surgeon told her; arranged herself, gave a rapid look at James, shut her eyes, rested herself on me, and took my hand. The operation was at once begun; it was necessarily slow; and chloroform—one of God's best gifts to his suffering children—was then unknown. The surgeon did his work. The pale face showed its pain, but was still and silent. Rab's soul was working within him; he saw that something strange was going on,—blood flowing from his mistress, and she suffering; his ragged ear was up, and importunate; he growled and gave now and then a sharp impatient yelp; he would have liked to have done something to that man. But James had him firm, and gave him a glower from time to time, and an intimation of a possible kick;—all the better for James, it kept his eye and his mind off Ailie.

It is over: she is dressed, steps gently and decently down from the table, looks for James; then, turning to the surgeon and the students, she curtsies,—and in a low, clear voice, begs their pardon if she has behaved ill. The students—all of us—wept like children; the surgeon happed her up carefully,—and, resting on James and me, Ailie went to her room, Rab following. We put her to bed. James took off his heavy shoes, crammed with tackets, heel-capt and toe-capt, and put them carefully under the table, saying, "Maister John, I'm for nane o' yer strynge nurse bodies for Ailie. I'll be her nurse, and I'll gang aboot on my stockin' soles as canny as pussy." And so he did; and handy and clever, and swift and tender as any woman, was that horny-handed, snell, peremptory little man. Everything she got he gave her: he seldom slept; and often I saw his small shrewd eyes out of the darkness, fixed on her. As before, they spoke little.

Rab behaved well, never moving, showing us how meek and gentle he could be, and occasionally, in his sleep, letting us know that he was demolishing some adversary. He took a walk with me every day, generally to the Candlemaker Row; but he was sombre and mild; declined doing battle, though some fit cases offered, and indeed submitted to sundry indignities; and was always very ready to turn, and came faster back, and trotted up the stair with much lightness, and went straight to that door.

Jess, the mare, had been sent, with her weatherworn cart, to Howgate, and had doubtless her own dim and placid meditations and confusions, on the absence of her master and Rab, and her unnatural freedom from the road and her cart.

For some days Ailie did well. The wound healed "by the first intention;" for as James said, "Oor Ailie's skin's ower clean to beil." The students came in quiet and anxious, and surrounded her bed. She said she liked to see their young, honest faces. The surgeon dressed her, and spoke to her in his own short kind way, pitying her through his eyes, Rab and James outside the circle,—Rab being now reconciled, and even cordial, and having made up his mind that as yet nobody required worrying, but, as you may suppose, semper paratus.

So far well: but, four days after the operation, my patient had a sudden and long shivering, a "groosin'," as she called it. I saw her soon after; her eyes were too bright, her cheek colored; she was restless, and ashamed of being so; the balance was lost; mischief had begun. On looking at the wound, a blush of red told the secret: her pulse was rapid, her breathing anxious and quick, she wasn't herself, as she said, and was vexed at her restlessness. We tried what we could. James did everything, was everywhere; never in the way, never out of it; Rab subsided under the table into a dark place, and was motionless, all but his eye, which followed every one. Ailie got worse; began to wander in her mind, gently; was more demonstrative in her ways to James, rapid in her questions, and sharp at times. He was vexed, and said, "She was never that way afore; no, never." For a time she knew her head was wrong, and was always asking our pardon—the dear, gentle old woman: then delirium set in strong, without pause. Her brain gave way, and then came that terrible spectacle,—

"The intellectual power, through words and things, Went sounding on its dim and perilous way;"

she sang bits of old songs and Psalms, stopping suddenly, mingling the Psalms of David and the diviner words of his Son and Lord, with homely odds and ends and scraps of ballads.

Nothing more touching, or in a sense more strangely beautiful, did I ever witness. Her tremulous, rapid, affectionate, eager, Scotch voice,—the swift, aimless, bewildered mind, the baffled utterance, the bright and perilous eye; some wild words, some household cares, something for James, the names of the dead, Rab called rapidly and in a "fremyt" voice, and he starting up surprised, and slinking off as if he were to blame somehow, or had been dreaming he heard; many eager questions and beseechings which James and I could make nothing of, and on which she seemed to set her all, and then sink back ununderstood. It was very sad, but better than many things that are not called sad. James hovered about, put out and miserable, but active and exact as ever; read to her when there was a lull, short bits from the Psalms, prose and metre, chanting the latter in his own rude and serious way, showing great knowledge of the fit words, bearing up like a man, and dealing over her as his "ain Ailie." "Ailie, ma woman!" "Ma ain bonnie wee dawtie!"

The end was drawing on: the golden bowl was breaking; the silver cord was fast being loosed—that animula blandula, vagula, hospes, comesque, was about to flee. The body and the soul—companions for sixty years—were being sundered, and taking leave. She was walking alone, through the valley of that shadow, into which one day we must all enter,—and yet she was not alone, for we know whose rod and staff were comforting her.

One night she had fallen quiet, and as we hoped, asleep; her eyes were shut. We put down the gas, and sat watching her. Suddenly she sat up in bed, and taking a bed-gown which was lying on it rolled up, she held it eagerly to her breast,—to the right side. We could see her eyes bright with a surprising tenderness and joy, bending over this bundle of clothes. She held it as a woman holds her sucking child; opening out her night-gown impatiently, and holding it close, and brooding over it, and murmuring foolish little words, as over one whom his mother comforteth, and who sucks and is satisfied. It was pitiful and strange to see her wasted dying look, keen and yet vague—her immense love.

"Preserve me!" groaned James, giving way. And then she rocked back and forward, as if to make it sleep, hushing it, and wasting on it her infinite fondness. "Wae's me, doctor; I declare she's thinkin' it's that bairn." "What bairn?" "The only bairn we ever had; our wee Mysie, and she's in the Kingdom, forty years and mair." It was plainly true: the pain in the breast, telling its urgent story to a bewildered, ruined brain, was misread and mistaken; it suggested to her the uneasiness of a breast full of milk, and then the child; and so again once more they were together, and she had her ain wee Mysie in her bosom.

This was the close. She sank rapidly: the delirium left her; but, as she whispered, she was "clean silly;" it was the lightening before the final darkness. After having for some time lain still—her eyes shut, she said "James!" He came close to her, and lifting up her calm, clear, beautiful eyes, she gave him a long look, turned to me kindly but shortly, looked for Rab but could not see him, then turned to her husband again, as if she would never leave off looking, shut her eyes, and composed herself. She lay for some time breathing quick, and passed away so gently, that when we thought she was gone, James, in his old-fashioned way, held the mirror to her face. After a long pause, one small spot of dimness was breathed out; it vanished away, and never returned, leaving the blank clear darkness of the mirror without a stain. "What is our life? it is even a vapor, which appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away."

Rab all this time had been full awake and motionless; he came forward beside us: Ailie's hand, which James had held, was hanging down; it was soaked with his tears; Rab licked it all over carefully, looked at her, and returned to his place under the table.

James and I sat, I don't know how long, but for some time,—saying nothing: he started up abruptly, and with some noise went to the table, and putting his right fore and middle fingers each into a shoe, pulled them out, and put them on, breaking one of the leather latchets, and muttering in anger, "I never did the like o' that afore!"

I believe he never did; nor after either. "Rab!" he said roughly, and pointing with his thumb to the bottom of the bed. Rab leapt up, and settled himself; his head and eye to the dead face. "Maister John, ye'll wait for me," said the carrier; and disappeared in the darkness, thundering down-stairs in his heavy shoes. I ran to a front window; there he was, already round the house, and out at the gate, fleeing like a shadow.

I was afraid about him, and yet not afraid; so I sat down beside Rab, and being wearied, fell asleep. I awoke from a sudden noise outside. It was November, and there had been a heavy fall of snow. Rab was in statu quo; he heard the noise too, and plainly knew it, but never moved. I looked out; and there, at the gate, in the dim morning—for the sun was not up—was Jess and the cart,—a cloud of steam rising from the old mare. I did not see James; he was already at the door, and came up the stairs, and met me. It was less than three hours since he left, and he must have posted out—who knows how?—to Howgate, full nine miles off; yoked Jess, and driven her astonished into town. He had an armful of blankets, and was streaming with perspiration. He nodded to me, spread out on the floor two pairs of clean old blankets having at their corners, "A. G., 1794," in large letters in red worsted. These were the initials of Alison Graeme, and James may have looked in at her from without—himself unseen but not unthought of—when he was "wat, wat, and weary," and after having walked many a mile over the hills, may have seen her sitting, while "a' the lave were sleepin';" and by the firelight working her name on the blankets, for her ain James's bed.

He motioned Rab down, and taking his wife in his arms, laid her in the blankets, and happed her carefully and firmly up, leaving the face uncovered; and then lifting her, he nodded again sharply to me, and with a resolved but utterly miserable face, strode along the passage, and down-stairs, followed by Rab. I followed with a light; but he didn't need it. I went out, holding stupidly the candle in my hand in the calm frosty air; we were soon at the gate. I could have helped him, but I saw he was not to be meddled with, and he was strong, and did not need it. He laid her down as tenderly, as safely, as he had lifted her out ten days before—as tenderly as when he had her first in his arms when she was only "A. G.,"—sorted her, leaving that beautiful sealed face open to the heavens; and then taking Jess by the head, he moved away. He did not notice me, neither did Rab, who presided behind the cart.

I stood till they passed through the long shadow of the College, and turned up Nicolson Street. I heard the solitary cart sound through the streets, and die away and come again; and I returned, thinking of that company going up Libberton Brae, then along Roslin Muir, the morning light touching the Pentlands and making them like on-looking ghosts; then down the hill through Auchindinny woods, past "haunted Woodhouselee;" and as daybreak came sweeping up the bleak Lammermuirs, and fell on his own door, the company would stop, and James would take the key, and lift Ailie up again, laying her on her own bed, and, having put Jess up, would return with Rab and shut the door.

James buried his wife, with his neighbors mourning, Rab inspecting the solemnity from a distance. It was snow, and that black ragged hole would look strange in the midst of the swelling spotless cushion of white. James looked after everything; then rather suddenly fell ill, and took to bed; was insensible when the doctor came, and soon died. A sort of low fever was prevailing in the village, and his want of sleep, his exhaustion, and his misery, made him apt to take it. The grave was not difficult to reopen. A fresh fall of snow had again made all things white and smooth; Rab once more looked on, and slunk home to the stable.

* * * * *

And what of Rab? I asked for him next week at the new carrier who got the goodwill of James's business, and was now master of Jess and her cart. "How's Rab?" He put me off, and said rather rudely, "What's your business wi' the dowg?" I was not to be so put off. "Where's Rab?" He, getting confused and red, and intermeddling with his hair, said, "'Deed, sir, Rab's deid." "Dead! what did he die of?" "Weel, sir," said he, getting redder, "he didna exactly dee; he was killed. I had to brain him wi' a rack-pin; there was nae doin' wi' him. He lay in the treviss wi' the mear, and wadna come oot. I tempit him wi' kail and meat, but he wad tak naething, and keepit me frae feedin' the beast, and he was aye gur gurrin', and grup gruppin' me by the legs. I was laith to make awa wi' the auld dowg, his like wasna atween this and Thornhill,—but, 'deed, sir, I could do naething else." I believed him. Fit end for Rab, quick and complete. His teeth and his friends gone, why should he keep the peace, and be civil?

"With BRAINS, Sir."

"Multi multa sciunt, pauci multum."

"It is one thing to wish to have truth on our side, and another thing to wish to be on the side of truth."—WHATELY.

"{Atalaiporos tois pollois he zetesis tes alepheias, kai epi ta hetoima mallon trepontai.}"—THUCYDIDES.

"The most perfect philosophy of the natural kind, only staves off our IGNORANCE a little longer; as, perhaps, the most perfect philosophy of the moral or metaphysical kind, serves only to discover larger portions of it."—DAVID HUME.

"Pray, Mr. Opie, may I ask what you mix your colors with?" said a brisk dilettante student to the great painter. "With Brains, sir," was the gruff reply—and the right one. It did not give much of what we call information; it did not expound the principles and rules of the art; but, if the inquirer had the commodity referred to, it would awaken him; it would set him a-going, a-thinking, and a-painting to good purpose. If he had not the wherewithal, as was likely enough, the less he had to do with colors and their mixture the better. Many other artists, when asked such a question, would have either set about detailing the mechanical composition of such and such colors, in such and such proportions, rubbed up so and so; or perhaps they would (and so much the better, but not the best) have shown him how they laid them on; but even this would leave him at the critical point. Opie preferred going to the quick and the heart of the matter: "With Brains, sir."

Sir Joshua Reynolds was taken by a friend to see a picture. He was anxious to admire it, and he looked it over with a keen and careful but favorable eye. "Capital composition; correct drawing; the color, tone, chiaroscuro excellent; but—but—it wants, hang it, it wants—That!" snapping his fingers; and, wanting "that," though it had everything else, it was worth nothing.

Again, Etty was appointed teacher of the students of the Royal Academy, having been preceded by a clever, talkative, scientific expounder of aesthetics, who delighted to tell the young men how everything was done, how to copy this, and how to express that. A student came up to the new master, "How should I do this, sir?" "Suppose you try." Another, "What does this mean, Mr. Etty?" "Suppose you look." "But I have looked." "Suppose you look again." And they did try, and they did look, and looked again; and they saw and achieved what they never could have done, had the how or the what (supposing this possible, which it is not in its full and highest meaning) been told them, or done for them; in the one case, sight and action were immediate, exact, intense, and secure; in the other mediate, feeble, and lost as soon as gained. But what are "Brains"? what did Opie mean? and what is Sir Joshua's "That"? What is included in it? and what is the use, or the need of trying and trying, of missing often before you hit, when you can be told at once and be done with it; or of looking when you may be shown? Everything in medicine and in painting—practical arts—as means to ends, let their scientific enlargement be ever so rapid and immense, depends upon the right answers to these questions.

First of all, "brains," in the painter, are not diligence, knowledge, skill, sensibility, a strong will, or a high aim,—he may have all these, and never paint anything so truly good and effective as the rugged woodcut we must all remember, of Apollyon bestriding the whole breadth of the way, and Christian girding at him like a man, in the old sixpenny Pilgrim's Progress; and a young medical student may have zeal, knowledge, ingenuity, attention, a good eye and a steady hand—he may be an accomplished anatomist, stethoscopist, histologist, and analyst; and yet, with all this, and all the lectures, and all the books, and all the sayings, and all the preparations, drawings, tables, and other helps of his teachers, crowded into his memory or his note-books, he may be beaten in treating a whitlow or a colic, by the nurse in the wards where he was clerk, or by the old country doctor who brought him into the world, and who listens with such humble wonder to his young friend's account, on his coming home after each session, of all he had seen and done,—of all the last astonishing discoveries and operations of the day. What the painter wants, in addition to, and as the complement of, the other elements, is genius and sense; what the doctor needs to crown and give worth and safety to his accomplishments, is sense and genius: in the first case, more of this, than of that; in the second, more of that, than of this. These are the "Brains" and the "That."

And what is genius? and what is sense? Genius is a peculiar native aptitude, or tendency, to any one calling or pursuit over all others. A man may have a genius for governing, for killing, or for curing the greatest number of men, and in the best possible manner: a man may have a genius for the fiddle, or his mission may be for the tight-rope, or the Jew's harp; or it may be a natural turn for seeking, and finding, and teaching truth, and for doing the greatest possible good to mankind; or it may be a turn equally natural for seeking, and finding, and teaching a lie, and doing the maximum of mischief. It was as natural, as inevitable, for Wilkie to develop himself into a painter, and such a painter as we know him to have been, as it is for an acorn when planted to grow up into an oak, a specific quercus robur. But genius, and nothing else, is not enough, even for a painter; he must likewise have sense; and what is sense? Sense drives, or ought to drive, the coach; sense regulates, combines, restrains, commands, all the rest—even the genius; and sense implies exactness and soundness, power and promptitude of mind.

Then for the young doctor, he must have as his main, his master faculty, SENSE—Brains—{nous}, justness of mind, because his subject-matter is one in which principle works, rather than impulse, as in painting; the understanding has first to do with it, however much it is worthy of the full exercise of the feelings, and the affections. But all will not do, if GENIUS is not there,—a real turn for the profession. It may not be a liking for it—some of the best of its practitioners never really liked it, at least liked other things better; but there must be a fitness of faculty of body and mind for its full, constant, exact pursuit. This sense and this genius, such a special therapeutic gift, had Hippocrates, Sydenham, Pott, Pinel, John Hunter, Delpech, Dupuytren, Kellie, Cheyne, Baillie, and Abercrombie. We might, to pursue the subject, pick out painters who had much genius and little or no sense, and vice versa; and physicians and surgeons, who had sense without genius, and genius without sense, and some perhaps who had neither, and yet were noticeable, and, in their own sideways, useful men.

But our great object will be gained if we have given our young readers (and these remarks are addressed exclusively to students) any idea of what we mean, if we have made them think, and look inwards. The noble and sacred science you have entered on is large, difficult, and deep, beyond most others; it is every day becoming larger, deeper, and in many senses more difficult, more complicated and involved. It requires more than the average intellect, energy, attention, patience, and courage, and that singular but imperial quality, at once a gift and an acquirement, presence of mind—{anchinoia}, or nearness of the {nous}, as the subtle Greeks called it—than almost any other department of human thought and action, except perhaps that of ruling men. Therefore it is, that we hold it to be of paramount importance that the parents, teachers, and friends of youths intended for medicine, and above all, that those who examine them on their entering on their studies, should at least (we might safely go much farther) satisfy themselves as far as they can, that they are not below par in intelligence; they may be deficient and unapt, qua medici, and yet, if taken in time, may make excellent men in other useful and honorable callings.

But suppose we have got the requisite amount and specific kind of capacity, how are we to fill it with its means; how are we to make it effectual for its end? On this point we say nothing, except that the fear now-a-days, is rather that the mind gets too much of too many things, than too little or too few. But this means of turning knowledge to action, making it what Bacon meant when he said it was power, invigorating the thinking substance—giving tone, and you may call it muscle and nerve, blood and bone, to the mind—a firm gripe, and a keen and sure eye; that we think, is far too little considered or cared for at present, as if the mere act of filling in everything forever into a poor lad's brain, would give him the ability to make anything of it, and above all, the power to appropriate the small portions of true nutriment, and reject the dregs.

One comfort we have, that in the main, and in the last resort, there is really very little that can be done for any man by another. Begin with the sense and the genius—the keen appetite and the good digestion—and, amid all obstacles and hardships, the work goes on merrily and well; without these, we all know what a laborious affair, and a dismal, it is to make an incapable youth apply. Did any of you ever set yourselves to keep up artificial respiration, or to trudge about for a whole night with a narcotized victim of opium, or transfuse blood (your own perhaps) into a poor, fainting exanimate wretch? If so, you will have some idea of the heartless attempt, and its generally vain and miserable result, to make a dull student apprehend—a debauched, interested, knowing, or active in anything beyond the base of his brain—a weak, etiolated intellect hearty, and worth anything; and yet how many such are dragged through their dreary curricula, and by some miraculous process of cramming, and equally miraculous power of turning their insides out, get through their examinations: and then—what then? providentially, in most cases, they find their level; the broad daylight of the world—its shrewd and keen eye, its strong instinct of what can, and what cannot serve its purpose—puts all, except the poor object himself, to rights; happy is it for him if he turns to some new and more congenial pursuit in time.

But it may be asked, how are the brains to be strengthened, the sense quickened, the genius awakened, the affections raised—the whole man turned to the best account for the cure of his fellow-men? How are you, when physics and physiology are increasing so marvellously, and when the burden of knowledge, the quantity of transferable information, of registered facts, of current names—and such names!—is so infinite: how are you to enable a student to take all in, bear up under all, and use it as not abusing it, or being abused by it? You must invigorate the containing and sustaining mind, you must strengthen him from within, as well as fill him from without; you must discipline, nourish, edify, relieve, and refresh his entire nature; and how? We have no time to go at large into this, but we will indicate what we mean:—encourage languages, especially French and German, at the early part of their studies; encourage not merely the book knowledge, but the personal pursuit of natural history, of field botany, of geology, of zoology; give the young, fresh, unforgetting eye, exercise and free scope upon the infinite diversity and combination of natural colors, forms, substances, surfaces, weights, and sizes—everything, in a word, that will educate their eye or ear, their touch, taste, and smell, their sense of muscular resistance; encourage them by prizes, to make skeletons, preparations, and collections of any natural objects; and, above all, try and get hold of their affections, and make them put their hearts into their work. Let them, if possible, have the advantage of a regulated tutorial, as well as the ordinary professorial system. Let there be no excess in the number of classes and frequency of lectures. Let them be drilled in composition; by this we mean the writing and spelling of correct, plain English (a matter not of every-day occurrence, and not on the increase),—let them be directed to the best books of the old masters in medicine, and examined in them,—let them be encouraged in the use of a wholesome and manly literature. We do not mean popular or even modern literature—such as Emerson, Bulwer, or Alison, or the trash of inferior periodicals or novels—fashion, vanity, and the spirit of the age, will attract them readily enough to all these; we refer to the treasures of our elder and better authors. If our young medical student would take our advice, and for an hour or two twice a week take up a volume of Shakspeare, Cervantes, Milton, Dryden, Pope, Cowper, Montaigne, Addison, Defoe, Goldsmith, Fielding, Scott, Charles Lamb, Macaulay, Jeffrey, Sydney Smith, Helps, Thackeray, &c., not to mention authors on deeper and more sacred subjects—they would have happier and healthier minds, and make none the worse doctors. If they, by good fortune—for the tide has set in strong against the literae humaniores—have come off with some Greek or Latin, we would supplicate for an ode of Horace, a couple of pages of Cicero or of Pliny once a month, and a page of Xenophon. French and German should be mastered either before or during the first years of study. They will never afterwards be acquired so easily or so thoroughly, and the want of them may be bitterly felt when too late.

But one main help, we are persuaded, is to be found in studying, and by this we do not mean the mere reading, but the digging into and through, the energizing upon, and mastering such books as we have mentioned at the close of this paper. These are not, of course, the only works we would recommend to those who wish to understand thoroughly, and to make up their minds, on these great subjects as wholes; but we all know too well that our Art is long, broad, and deep,—and Time, opportunity, and our little hour, brief and uncertain, therefore, we would recommend those books as a sort of game of the mind, a mental exercise—like cricket, a gymnastic, a clearing of the eyes of their mind as with euphrasy, a strengthening their power over particulars, a getting fresh, strong views of worn out, old things, and, above all, a learning the right use of their reason, and by knowing their own ignorance and weakness, finding true knowledge and strength. Taking up a book like Arnauld, and reading a chapter of his lively, manly sense, is like throwing your manuals, and scalpels, and microscopes, and natural (most unnatural) orders out of your hand and head, and taking a game with the Grange Club, or a run to the top of Arthur Seat. Exertion quickens your pulse, expands your lungs, makes your blood warmer and redder, fills your mouth with the pure waters of relish, strengthens and supples your legs; and though on your way to the top you may encounter rocks, and baffling debris, and gusts of fierce winds rushing out upon you from behind corners, just as you will find in Arnauld, and all truly serious and honest books of the kind, difficulties and puzzles, winds of doctrine, and deceitful mists; still you are rewarded at the top by the wide view. You see, as from a tower, the end of all. You look into the perfections and relations of things. You see the clouds, the bright lights and the everlasting hills on the far horizon. You come down the hill a happier, a better, and a hungrier man, and of a better mind. But, as we said, you must eat the book, you must crush it, and cut it with your teeth and swallow it; just as you must walk up, and not be carried up the hill, much less imagine you are there, or look upon a picture of what you would see were you up, however accurately or artistically done; no—you yourself must do both.

Philosophy—the love and the possession of wisdom—is divided into two things, science or knowledge; and a habit, or power of mind. He who has got the first is not truly wise unless his mind has reduced and assimilated it, as Dr. Prout would have said, unless he appropriates and can use it for his need.

The prime qualifications of a physician may be summed up in the words Capax, Perspicax, Sagax, Efficax. Capax—there must be room to receive, and arrange, and keep knowledge; Perspicax—senses and perceptions, keen, accurate, and immediate, to bring in materials from all sensible things; Sagax—a central power of knowing what is what, and what it is worth, of choosing and rejecting, of judging; and finally, Efficax—the will and the way—the power to turn all the other three—capacity, perspicacity, sagacity, to account, in the performance of the thing in hand, and thus rendering back to the outer world, in a new and useful form, what you had received from it. These are the intellectual qualities which make up the physician, without any one of which he would be mancus, and would not deserve the name of a complete artsman, any more than proteine would be itself if any one of its four elements were amissing.

We have left ourselves no room to speak of the books we have named at the end of this paper. We recommend them all to our young readers. Arnauld's excellent and entertaining Art of Thinking—the once famous Port-Royal Logic—is, if only one be taken, probably the best. Thomson's little book is admirable, and is specially suited for a medical student, as its illustrations are drawn with great intelligence and exactness from chemistry and physiology. We know nothing more perfect than the analysis, at page 348, of Sir H. Davy's beautiful experiments to account for the traces of an alkali, found when decomposing water by galvanism. It is quite exquisite, the hunt after and the unearthing of "the residual cause." This book has the great advantage of a clear, lively, and strong style. We can only give some short extracts.


"We may define the inductive method as the process of discovering laws and rules from facts, and causes from effects; and the deductive, as the method of deriving facts from laws, and effects from their causes."

There is a valuable paragraph on anticipation and its uses—there is a power and desire of the mind to project itself from the known into the unknown, in the expectation of finding what it is in search of.

"This power of divination, this sagacity, which is the mother of all science, we may call anticipation. The intellect, with a dog-like instinct, will not hunt until it has found the scent. It must have some presage of the result before it will turn its energies to its attainment. The system of anatomy which has immortalized the name of Oken, is the consequence of a flash of anticipation, which glanced through his mind when he picked up, in a chance walk, the skull of a deer, bleached by the weather, and exclaimed—'It is a vertebral column!'"

"The man of science possesses principles—the man of art, not the less nobly gifted, is possessed and carried away by them. The principles which art involves, science evolves. The truths on which the success of art depends lurk in the artist's mind in an undeveloped state, guiding his hand, stimulating his invention, balancing his judgment, but not appearing in regular propositions." "An art (that of medicine for instance) will of course admit into its limits, everything (and nothing else) which can conduce to the performance of its own proper work; it recognizes no other principles of selection."

"He who reads a book on logic, probably thinks no better when he rises up than when he sat down, but if any of the principles there unfolded cleave to his memory, and he afterwards, perhaps unconsciously, shapes and corrects his thoughts by them, no doubt the whole powers of his reasoning receive benefit. In a word, every art, from reasoning to riding and rowing, is learned by assiduous practice, and if principles do any good, it is proportioned to the readiness with which they can be converted into rules, and the patient constancy with which they are applied in all our attempts at excellence."

"A man can teach names to another man, but he cannot plant in another's mind that far higher gift—the power of naming."

"Language is not only the vehicle of thought, it is a great and efficient instrument in thinking."

"The whole of every science may be made the subject of teaching. Not so with art; much of it is not teachable."

Coleridge's profound and brilliant, but unequal, and often somewhat nebulous Essay on Method, is worth reading over, were it only as an exercitation, and to impress on the mind the meaning and value of method. Method is the road by which you reach, or hope to reach, a certain end; it is a process. It is the best direction for the search after truth. System, again, which is often confounded with it, is a mapping out, a circumscription of knowledge, either already gained, or theoretically laid down as probable. Aristotle had a system which did much good, but also much mischief. Bacon was chiefly occupied in preparing and pointing out the way—the only way—of procuring knowledge. He left to others to systematize the knowledge after it was got; but the pride and indolence of the human spirit lead it constantly to build systems on imperfect knowledge. It has the trick of filling up out of its own fancy what it has not the diligence, the humility, and the honesty, to seek in nature; whose servant, and articulate voice, it ought to be.

Descartes' little tract on Method is, like everything the lively and deep-souled Breton did, full of original and bright thought.

Sir John Herschel's volume needs no praise. We know no work of the sort, fuller of the best moral worth, as well as the highest philosophy. We fear it is more talked of than read.

We would recommend the article in the Quarterly Review as first-rate, and written with great eloquence and grace.

SYDNEY SMITH'S Sketches of Lectures on Moral Philosophy. Second Edition.

SEDGWICK'S Discourse on the Studies at Cambridge, with a Preface and Appendix. Sixth Edition.

We have put these two worthies here, not because we had forgotten them,—much less because we think less of them than the others, especially Sydney. But because we bring them in at the end of our small entertainment, as we hand round a liqueur—be it Curacoa, Kimmel, or old Glenlivet—after dinner, and end with the heterogeneous plum-pudding—that most English of realized ideas. Sydney Smith's book is one of rare excellence, and well worthy of the study of men and women, though perhaps not transcendental enough for our modern philosophers, male and female. It is really astonishing how much of the best of everything, from patriotism to nonsense, is to be found in this volume of sketches. You may read it through, if your sides can bear such an accumulation of laughter, with great benefit; and if you open it anywhere, you can't read three sentences without coming across some, it may be common thought, and often original enough, better expressed and put than you ever before saw it. The lectures on the Affections, the Passions and Desires, and on Study, we would have everybody to read and enjoy.

Sedgwick is a different, and, as a whole, an inferior man; but a man every inch of him, and an Englishman too, in his thoughts, and in his fine mother wit and tongue. He has, in the midst of all his confusion and passionateness, the true instinct of philosophy—the true venatic sense of objective truth. We know nothing better in the main, than his demolition of what is untrue, and his reduction of what is absurd, and his taking the wind out of what is tympanitic, in the notorious Vestiges; we don't say he always does justice to what is really good in it; his mission is to execute justice upon it, and that he does. His remarks on Oken and Owen, and his quotations from Dr. Clarke's admirable paper on the Development of the Foetus, in the Cambridge Philosophical Transactions, we would recommend to our medical friends. The very confusion of Sedgwick is the free outcome of a deep and racy nature; it puts us in mind of what happened, when an Englishman was looking with astonishment and disgust at a Scotchman eating a singed sheep's head, and was asked by the eater what he thought of that dish? "Dish, sir, do you call that a dish?" "Dish or no dish," rejoined the Caledonian, "there's a deal o' fine confused feedin' aboot it, let me tell you."

We conclude these rambling remarks with a quotation from Arnauld, the friend of Pascal, and the intrepid antagonist of the Vatican and the Grand Monarque; one of the noblest, freest, most untiring and honest intellects, our world has ever seen. "Why don't you rest sometimes?" said his friend Nicole to him. "Rest! why should I rest here? haven't I an eternity to rest in?" The following sentence from his "Port-Royal Logic," so well introduced and translated by Mr. Baynes, contains the gist of all we have been trying to say. It should be engraven on the tablets of every young student's heart—for the heart has to do with study as well as the head.

"There is nothing more desirable than good sense and justness of mind,—all other qualities of mind are of limited use, but exactness of judgment is of general utility in every part and in all employments of life.

"We are too apt to employ reason merely as an instrument for acquiring the sciences, whereas we ought to avail ourselves of the sciences, as an instrument for perfecting our reason; justness of mind being infinitely more important than all the speculative knowledge which we can obtain by means of sciences the most solid. This ought to lead wise men to make their sciences the exercise and not the occupation of their mental powers. Men are not born to employ all their time in measuring lines, in considering the various movements of matter: their minds are too great, and their life too short, their time too precious, to be so engrossed; but they are born to be just, equitable, and prudent, in all their thoughts, their actions, their business; to these things they ought especially to train and discipline themselves."

So, young friends, bring Brains to your work, and mix everything with them, and them with everything. Arma virumque, tools and a man to use them. Stir up, direct, and give free scope to Sir Joshua's "that," and try again, and again; and look, oculo intento, acie acerrima. Looking is a voluntary act,—it is the man within coming to the window; seeing is a state,—passive and receptive, and, at the best, little more than registrative.

Since writing the above, we have read with great satisfaction Dr. Forbes' Lecture delivered before the Chichester Literary Society and Mechanics' Institute, and published at their request. Its subject is, Happiness in its relation to Work and Knowledge. It is worthy of its author, and is, we think, more largely and finely imbued with his personal character, than any one other of his works that we have met with. We could not wish a fitter present for a young man starting on the game of life. It is a wise, cheerful manly, and warm-hearted discourse on the words of Bacon,—"He that is wise, let him pursue some desire or other: for he that doth not affect some one thing in chief, unto him all things are distasteful and tedious." We will not spoil this little volume by giving any account of it. Let our readers get it, and read it. The extracts from his Thesis, De Mentis Exercitatione et Felicitate exinde derivanda, are very curious—showing the native vigor and bent of his mind, and indicating also, at once the identity and the growth of his thoughts during the lapse of thirty-three years.

We give the last paragraph, the sense and the filial affection of which are alike admirable. Having mentioned to his hearers that they saw in himself a living illustration of the truth of his position, that happiness is a necessary result of knowledge and work, he thus concludes:—

"If you would further desire to know to what besides I am chiefly indebted for so enviable a lot, I would say:—1st, Because I had the good fortune to come into the world with a healthful frame, and with a sanguine temperament. 2d, Because I had no patrimony, and was therefore obliged to trust to my own exertions for a livelihood. 3d, Because I was born in a land where instruction is greatly prized and readily accessible. 4th, Because I was brought up to a profession which not only compelled mental exercise, but supplied for its use materials of the most delightful and varied kind. And lastly and principally, because the good man to whom I owe my existence, had the foresight to know what would be best for his children. He had the wisdom, and the courage, and the exceeding love, to bestow all that could be spared of his worldly means, to purchase for his sons, that which is beyond price, EDUCATION; well judging that the means so expended, if hoarded for future use, would be, if not valueless, certainly evanescent, while the precious treasure for which they were exchanged, a cultivated and instructed mind, would not only last through life, but might be the fruitful source of treasures far more precious than itself. So equipped he sent them forth into the world to fight Life's battle, leaving the issue in the hand of God; confident, however, that though they might fail to achieve renown or to conquer Fortune, they possessed that which, if rightly used, could win for them the yet higher prize of HAPPINESS."

* * * * *

Since this was written, many good books have appeared, but we would select three, which all young men should read and get—Hartley Coleridge's Lives of Northern Worthies, Thackeray's Letters of Brown the Elder, and Tom Brown's School-days—in spirit and in expression, we don't know any better models for manly courage, good sense, and feeling, and they are as well written as they are thought.

There are the works of another man, one of the greatest, not only of our, but of any time, to which we cannot too earnestly draw our young readers. We mean the philosophical writings of Sir William Hamilton. We know no more invigorating, quickening, rectifying kind of exercise, than reading with a will, anything he has written upon permanently important subjects. There is a greatness and simplicity, a closeness of thought, a glance keen and wide, a play of the entire nature, and a truthfulness and downrightness, with an amount, and accuracy, and vivification of learning, such as we know of in no one other writer, ancient or modern—not even Leibnitz; and we know no writings which so wholesomely at once exalt and humble the reader, make him feel what is in him, and what he can and may, as well as what he cannot, and need never hope to know. In this respect, Hamilton is as grand as Pascal, and more simple; he exemplifies everywhere his own sublime adaptation of Scripture—unless a man become a little child, he cannot enter into the kingdom; he enters the temple stooping, but he presses on, intrepid and alone, to the inmost adytum, worshipping the more the nearer he gets to the inaccessible shrine, whose veil no mortal hand has ever rent in twain. And we name after him, the thoughtful, candid, impressive little volume of his pupil, his friend, and his successor, Professor Fraser.

The following passage from Sir William Hamilton's Dissertations, besides its wise thought, sounds in the ear like the pathetic and majestic sadness of a symphony by Beethoven:—

"There are two sorts of ignorance: we philosophize to escape ignorance, and the consummation of our philosophy is ignorance; we start from the one, we repose in the other; they are the goals from which, and to which, we tend; and the pursuit of knowledge is but a course between two ignorances, as human life is itself only a travelling from grave to grave.

{Tis bios?—Ek tymboio thoron, eti tymbon hodeuo.}

The highest reach of human science is the scientific recognition of human ignorance; 'Qui nescit ignorare, ignorat scire.' This 'learned ignorance' is the rational conviction by the human mind of its inability to transcend certain limits; it is the knowledge of ourselves,—the science of man. This is accomplished by a demonstration of the disproportion between what is to be known, and our faculties of knowing,—the disproportion, to wit, between the infinite and the finite. In fact, the recognition of human ignorance, is not only the one highest, but the one true, knowledge; and its first-fruit, as has been said, is humility. Simple nescience is not proud; consummated science is positively humble. For this knowledge it is not, which 'puffeth up;' but its opposite, the conceit of false knowledge,—the conceit, in truth, as the apostle notices, of an ignorance of the very nature of knowledge:—

'Nam nesciens quid scire sit, Te scire cuncta jactitas.'

"But as our knowledge stands to Ignorance, so stands it also to Doubt. Doubt is the beginning and the end of our efforts to know; for as it is true,—'Alte dubitat qui altius credit,' so it is likewise true,—'Quo magis quaerimus magis dubitamus.'

"The grand result of human wisdom is thus only a consciousness that what we know is as nothing to what we know not, ('Quantum est quod nescimus!')—an articulate confession, in fact, by our natural reason, of the truth declared in revelation, that 'now we see through a glass, darkly.'"

His pupil writes in the same spirit and to the same end:—"A discovery, by means of reflection and mental experiment, of the limits of knowledge, is the highest and most universally applicable discovery of all; it is the one through which our intellectual life most strikingly blends with the moral and practical part of human nature. Progress in knowledge is often paradoxically indicated by a diminution in the apparent bulk of what we know. Whatever helps to work off the dregs of false opinion, and to purify the intellectual mass—whatever deepens our conviction of our infinite ignorance—really adds to, although it sometimes seems to diminish, the rational possessions of man. This is the highest kind of merit that is claimed for Philosophy, by its earliest as well as by its latest representatives. It is by this standard that Socrates and Kant measure the chief results of their toil."


1. Arnauld's Port-Royal Logic; translated by T. S. Baynes.—2. Thomson's Outlines of the Necessary Laws of Thought.—3. Descartes on the Method of Rightly Conducting the Reason, and Seeking Truth in the Sciences.—4. Coleridge's Essay on Method.—5. Whately's Logic and Rhetoric; new and cheap edition.—6. Mill's Logic; new and cheap edition.—7. Dugald Stewart's Outlines.—8. Sir John Herschel's Preliminary Dissertation.—9. Quarterly Review, vol. lxviii; Article upon Whewell's Philosophy of Inductive Sciences.—10. Isaac Taylor's Elements of Thought.—11. Sir William Hamilton's edition of Reid; Dissertations; and Lectures.—12. Professor Fraser's Rational Philosophy.—13. Locke on the Conduct of the Understanding.


"The reader must remember that my work is concerning the aspects of things only."—RUSKIN.

We,—the Sine Qua Non, the Duchess, the Sputchard, the Dutchard, the Ricapicticapic, Oz and Oz, the Maid of Lorn, and myself,—left Crieff some fifteen years ago, on a bright September morning, soon after daybreak, in a gig. It was a morning still and keen: the sun sending his level shafts across Strathearn, and through the thin mist over its river hollows, to the fierce Aberuchil Hills, and searching out the dark blue shadows in the corries of Benvorlich. But who and how many are "we?" To make you as easy as we all were, let me tell you we were four; and are not these dumb friends of ours persons rather than things? is not their soul ampler, as Plato would say, than their body, and contains rather than is contained? Is not what lives and wills in them, and is affectionate, as spiritual, as immaterial, as truly removed from mere flesh, blood, and bones, as that soul which is the proper self of their master? And when we look each other in the face, as I now look in Dick's, who is lying in his "corny" by the fireside, and he in mine, is it not as much the dog within looking from out his eyes—the windows of his soul—as it is the man from his?

The Sine Qua Non, who will not be pleased at being spoken of, is such an one as that vain-glorious and chivalrous Ulric von Huetten—the Reformation's man of wit, and of the world, and of the sword, who slew Monkery with the wild laughter of his Epistolae Obscurorum Virorum—had in his mind when he wrote thus to his friend Fredericus Piscator (Mr. Fred. Fisher), on the 19th May 1519, "Da mihi uxorem, Friderice, et ut scias qualem, venustam, adolescentulam, probe educatam, hilarem, verecundam, patientem." "Qualem," he lets Frederic understand in the sentence preceding, is one "qua cum ludam, qua jocos conferam, amoeniores et leviusculas fabulas misceam, ubi sollicitudinis aciem obtundam, curarum aestus mitigem." And if you would know more of the Sine Qua Non, and in English, for the world is dead to Latin now, you will find her name and nature in Shakspeare's words, when King Henry the Eighth says, "go thy ways."

The Duchess, alias all the other names till you come to the Maid of Lorn, is a rough, gnarled, incomparable little bit of a terrier, three parts Dandie-Dinmont, and one part—chiefly in tail and hair—cocker: her father being Lord Rutherfurd's famous "Dandie," and her mother the daughter of a Skye, and a light-hearted Cocker. The Duchess is about the size and weight of a rabbit; but has a soul as big, as fierce, and as faithful as had Meg Merrilies, with a nose as black as Topsy's; and is herself every bit as game and queer as that delicious imp of darkness and of Mrs. Stowe. Her legs set her long slim body about two inches and a half from the ground, making her very like a huge caterpillar or hairy oobit—her two eyes, dark and full, and her shining nose, being all of her that seems anything but hair. Her tail was a sort of stump, in size and in look very much like a spare foreleg, stuck in anywhere to be near. Her color was black above and a rich brown below, with two dots of tan above the eyes, which dots are among the deepest of the mysteries of Black and Tan.

This strange little being I had known for some years, but had only possessed about a month. She and her pup (a young lady called Smoot, which means smolt, a young salmon), were given me by the widow of an honest and drunken—as much of the one as of the other—Edinburgh street-porter, a native of Badenoch, as a legacy from him and a fee from her for my attendance on the poor man's death-bed. But my first sight of the Duchess was years before in Broughton Street, when I saw her sitting bolt upright, begging, imploring, with those little rough four leggies, and those yearning, beautiful eyes, all the world, or any one, to help her master, who was lying "mortal" in the kennel. I raised him, and with the help of a ragged Samaritan, who was only less drunk than he, I got Macpherson—he held from Glen Truim—home; the excited doggie trotting off, and looking back eagerly to show us the way. I never again passed the Porters' Stand without speaking to her. After Malcolm's burial I took possession of her; she escaped to the wretched house, but as her mistress was off to Kingussie, and the door shut, she gave a pitiful howl or two, and was forthwith back at my door, with an impatient, querulous bark. And so this is our second of the four; and is she not deserving of as many names as any other Duchess, from her of Medina Sidonia downwards?

A fierier little soul never dwelt in a queerer or stancher body; see her huddled up, and you would think her a bundle of hair, or a bit of old mossy wood, or a slice of heathery turf, with some red soil underneath but speak to her, or give her a cat to deal with, be it bigger than herself, and what an incarnation of affection, energy, and fury—what a fell unquenchable little ruffian.

The Maid of Lorn was a chestnut mare, a broken down racer, thorough-bred as Beeswing, but less fortunate in her life, and I fear not so happy occasione mortis: unlike the Duchess, her body was greater and finer than her soul; still she was a ladylike creature, sleek, slim, nervous, meek, willing, and fleet. She had been thrown down by some brutal half-drunk Forfarshire laird, when he put her wildly and with her wind gone, at the last hurdle on the North Inch at the Perth races. She was done for and bought for ten pounds by the landlord of the Drummond Arms, Crieff, who had been taking as much money out of her, and putting as little corn into her as was compatible with life, purposing to run her for the Consolation Stakes at Stirling. Poor young lady, she was a sad sight—broken in back, in knees, in character, and wind—in everything but temper, which was as sweet and all-enduring as Penelope's or our own Enid's.

Of myself, the fourth, I decline making any account. Be it sufficient that I am the Dutchard's master, and drove the gig.

It was, as I said, a keen and bright morning, and the S. Q. N. feeling chilly, and the Duchess being away after a cat up a back entry, doing a chance stroke of business, and the mare looking only half breakfasted, I made them give her a full feed of meal and water, and stood by and enjoyed her enjoyment. It seemed too good to be true, and she looked up every now and then in the midst of her feast, with a mild wonder. Away she and I bowled down the sleeping village, all overrun with sunshine, the dumb idiot man and the birds alone up, for the ostler was off to his straw. There was the S. Q. N. and her small panting friend, who had lost the cat, but had got what philosophers say is better—the chase. "Nous ne cherchons jamais les choses, mais la recherche des choses," says Pascal. The Duchess would substitute for les chosesles chats. Pursuit, not possession, was her passion. We all got in, and off set the Maid, who was in excellent heart, quite gay, pricking her ears and casting up her head, and rattling away at a great pace.

We baited at St. Fillans, and again cheered the heart of the Maid with unaccustomed corn—the S. Q. N., Duchie, and myself, going up to the beautiful rising ground at the back of the inn, and lying on the fragrant heather looking at the Loch, with its mild gleams and shadows, and its second heaven looking out from its depths, the wild, rough mountains of Glenartney towering opposite. Duchie, I believe, was engaged in minor business close at hand, and caught and ate several large flies and a humble-bee; she was very fond of this small game.

There is not in all Scotland, or as far as I have seen in all else, a more exquisite twelve miles of scenery than that between Crieff and the head of Lochearn. Ochtertyre, and its woods; Benchonzie, the head-quarters of the earthquakes, only lower than Benvorlich; Strowan; Lawers, with its grand old Scotch pines; Comrie, with the wild Lednoch; Dunira; and St. Fillans, where we are now lying, and where the poor thoroughbred is tucking in her corn. We start after two hours of dreaming in the half sunlight, and rumble ever and anon over an earthquake, as the common folk call these same hollow, resounding rifts in the rock beneath, and arriving at the old inn at Lochearnhead, have a tousie tea. In the evening, when the day was darkening into night, Duchie and I,—the S. Q. N. remaining to read and rest,—walked up Glen Ogle. It was then in its primeval state, the new road non-existent, and the old one staggering up and down and across that most original and Cyclopean valley, deep, threatening, savage, and yet beautiful—

"Where rocks were rudely heaped, and rent As by a spirit turbulent; Where sights were rough, and sounds were wild, And everything unreconciled;"

with flocks of mighty boulders, straying all over it. Some far up, and frightful to look at, others huddled down in the river, immane pecus, and one huge unloosened fellow, as big as a manse, up aloft watching them, like old Proteus with his calves, as if they had fled from the sea by stress of weather, and had been led by their ancient herd altos visere montes—a wilder, more "unreconciled" place I know not; and now that the darkness was being poured into it, those big fellows looked bigger, and hardly "canny."

Just as we were turning to come home—Duchie unwillingly, as she had much multifarious, and as usual fruitless hunting to do—she and I were startled by seeing a dog in the side of the hill, where the soil had been broken. She barked and I stared; she trotted consequentially up and snuffed more canino, and I went nearer: it never moved, and on coming quite close I saw as it were the image of a terrier, a something that made me think of an idea unrealized; the rough, short, scrubby heather and dead grass, made a color and a coat just like those of a good Highland terrier—a sort of pepper and salt this one was—and below, the broken soil, in which there was some iron and clay, with old gnarled roots, for all the world like its odd, bandy, and sturdy legs. Duchie seemed not so easily unbeguiled as I was, and kept staring, and snuffing, and growling, but did not touch it,—seemed afraid. I left and looked again, and certainly it was very odd the growing resemblance to one of the indigenous, hairy, low-legged dogs, one sees all about the Highlands, terriers, or earthy ones.

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