LORD  BYRON  and  his  TIMES
Documents Biography Criticism

The Autobiography of William Jerdan
Ch. 14: Private Life

Vol. I. Front Matter
Ch. 1: Introductory
Ch. 2: Childhood
Ch. 3: Boyhood
Ch. 4: London
Ch. 5: Companions
Ch. 6: The Cypher
Ch. 7: Edinburgh
Ch. 8: Edinburgh
Ch. 9: Excursion
Ch. 10: Naval Services
Ch. 11: Periodical Press
Ch. 12: Periodical Press
Ch. 13: Past Times
Ch. 14: Past Times
Ch. 15: Literary
Ch. 16: War & Jubilees
Ch. 17: The Criminal
Ch. 18: Mr. Perceval
Ch. 19: Poets
Ch. 20: The Sun
Ch. 21: Sun Anecdotes
Ch. 22: Paris in 1814
Ch. 23: Paris in 1814
Ch. 24: Byron
Vol. I. Appendices
Scott Anecdote
Burns Anecdote
Life of Thomson
John Stuart Jerdan
Scottish Lawyers
Sleepless Woman
Canning Anecdote
Southey in The Sun
Hood’s Lamia
Murder of Perceval
Vol. II. Front Matter
Ch. 1: Literary
Ch. 2: Mr. Canning
Ch. 3: The Sun
Ch. 4: Amusements
Ch. 5: Misfortune
Ch. 6: Shreds & Patches
Ch. 7: A Character
Ch. 8: Varieties
Ch. 9: Ingratitude
Ch. 10: Robert Burns
Ch. 11: Canning
Ch. 12: Litigation
Ch. 13: The Sun
Ch. 14: Literary Gazette
Ch. 15: Literary Gazette
Ch. 16: John Trotter
Ch. 17: Contributors
Ch. 18: Poets
Ch 19: Peter Pindar
Ch 20: Lord Munster
Ch 21: My Writings
Vol. II. Appendices
The Satirist.
Authors and Artists.
The Treasury
Morning Chronicle
Chevalier Taylor
Foreign Journals
Vol. III. Front Matter
Ch. 1: Literary Pursuits
Ch. 2: Literary Labour
Ch. 3: Poetry
Ch. 4: Coleridge
Ch 5: Criticisms
Ch. 6: Wm Gifford
Ch. 7: W. H. Pyne
Ch. 8: Bernard Barton
Ch. 9: Insanity
Ch. 10: The R.S.L.
Ch. 11: The R.S.L.
Ch. 12: L.E.L.
Ch. 13: L.E.L.
Ch. 14: The Past
Ch. 15: Literati
Ch. 16: A. Conway
Ch. 17: Wellesleys
Ch. 18: Literary Gazette
Ch. 19: James Perry
Ch. 20: Personal Affairs
Vol. III. Appendices
Literary Poverty
Ismael Fitzadam
Mr. Tompkisson
Mrs. Hemans
A New Review
Debrett’s Peerage
Procter’s Poems
Poems by Others
Poems by Jerdan
Vol. IV. Front Matter
Ch. 1: Critical Glances
Ch. 2: Personal Notes
Ch. 3: Fresh Start
Ch. 4: Thomas Hunt
Ch. 5: On Life
Ch. 6: Periodical Press
Ch. 7: Quarterly Review
Ch. 8: My Own Life
Ch. 9: Mr. Canning
Ch. 10: Anecdotes
Ch. 11: Bulwer-Lytton
Ch. 12: G. P. R. James
Ch. 13: Finance
‣ Ch. 14: Private Life
Ch. 15: Learned Societies
Ch. 16: British Association
Ch. 17: Literary Characters
Ch. 18: Literary List
Ch. 19: Club Law
Ch. 20: Conclusion
Vol. IV. Appendix
Gerald Griffin
W. H. Ainsworth
James Weddell
The Last Bottle
N. T. Carrington
The Literary Fund
Letter from L.E.L.
Geographical Society
Baby, a Memoir
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Knows nought of changes. Age hath traced them all,
Expects, and can interpret them.—Isaac Comnenus.
Friendship is like the sun’s eternal rays;
Not daily benefits exhaust the flame,
It still is giving, and still burns the same.—Gay.

Activity of mind seems to grow with the utmost stretch of employment. The “Literary Gazette” gave me incessant occupation, I may say night and day. On returning from the gayest party, I was usually at my books and desk writing for reviews, or scribbling down some disjuncta membra to remind me of passing original thoughts. To use a much abused phrase, my imagination was much more “suggestive” in post-prandial and nocturnal than in breakfasting and matutinal hours. Mine were certainly not great works, but I perfectly agreed with the good Bishop of Salisbury, that nearly all great literary productions had been the labour of nights (the midnight oil) and not of mornings. The very alacrity of spirit which attends the bright sunrise and glowing charms of Aurora, is incongenial with deep
study. You wish to leap out and enjoy the fresh and balmy air, not to sit and reflect, gravely and calmly, on recondite subjects. The soul is elastic, and tiptoe for motion, not rest; to enjoy the needful quietude and sedateness, the busy world must be shut out and asleep, and then you may glide from all the philosophies of letters and life, to revel in stranger abstractions and the fantastic delirium of dreamland. Castles in the air are delicious buildings: unreal? No! they are real cities, temples, sanctuaries of refuge from the cares, the troubles, the anxieties of the material lump-world.

Thus it happened that, ever busy as I was, I, nevertheless, found impulse and time for contributions to nearly every review, magazine, annual, or other periodical for which I was invited to write. Scattered over such a surface, many of these essays, long since forgotten, are occasionally and incidentally brought to my remembrance, and I am not without a hope that, at some future day, a selection from the large number may meet with public favour; and, as a specimen, beg leave, like Abraham, to offer my Baby as a specimen and sacrifice.*

Whilst I was contributing to others in the wide circle of the periodico-literary republic, others were contributing to me, and the “Gazette” was enriched by the numerous and ceaseless productions which gave it the celebrity and influence which it enjoyed both at home and abroad. Loudon on gardening, botany, and agriculture; Dr. Anthony Todd Thomson on popular medicine and diet; Pyne, author of “Wine and Walnuts,” on the arts; R. Dagley and Walter Henry Watts also on the arts and on art exhibitions and publications; Messrs. Planché, Charles Dance,

* Appendix I. “Baby, a Tale.”

Rev. Mr. Fallofield and others on the drama; T. F. Hunt on architecture and street improvements; A. A. Watts on literary subjects generally; Rev. W. Landon on classics and divinity; Dr. Donald Maclean on Celtic matters; Professor Faraday on sciences; Dr. Wait on Hebrew and Oriental literature; and others of competent abilities wrote regular series of papers and reviews from week to week, whilst such individuals as Frere, Poole, Peake, Hemans, Kenney, Croly, Proctor, Paul Sandby, L. E. L. (in every department and almost as much as the Editor), Sharon Turner, Maginn, Sir T. Lawrence,* Thomas Pringle, John Trotter, Charles Swain, L. Blanchard, Mrs. Alaric Watts, Mary Ann Browne, Eliza Cook, Capt. Medwin, Carrington, Allan Cunningham, J. G. Lockhart, T. Hood, Lucy Aikin, T. F. Hollings, Henry Ellis, Miss Roberts, Capt. and Mr. Beechey, Dr. Bowring, Dr. Copeland, James Montgomery, Pennie, Robert Montgomery, Lytton Bulwer, Henry Bulwer, W. F. Ainsworth, W. H. Ainsworth, Sir Alex. Johnston, Brockedon, C. Ollier, Capt. Glascock, Lord Cockburn, Barham (Ingoldsby), Keats, C. Knight, Southey, Dr. Roget, Parris, Barker (Old Sailor), Fitzclarence (Lord Munster), Lord Normanby, Sir W. Betham, C. Croker, Don Telesforo de Trueba, Howard Payne, General Ainslie, Capt. Williams, J. Gwilt, Rev. Mr. Bosworth, of Amsterdam, Rev. Mr. Smirnove (Russian Embassy), Right Honourable C. Yorke, Dr. Boyton,

* Ex. gr:

Aspasia’s talents are too rare
To be confined to any elf:
A pine-apple I’d rather share,
Than have a turnip to myself.
Blockheads and wits, be this your rule,
Abstain from sharp replies:
Silence is wisdom in the fool,
And mercy in the wise.—T. L.

Sir W. Gell, Hudson Gurney, Lord Farnborough, Colonel Leake, W. H. Hamilton, Sotheby, Cullimore, Sir H. Ellis, Sir W. Ouseley, Holman (Blind Traveller), Sir John Malcolm, Huttmann, Gleig, T. Phillips, R. A., Uwins, R. A., Dr. Wallich, Mrs. Dr. Hughes, Mrs. Dr. Thomson, Captain Battier, Sir W. Scott, Blackwood, Cadell, Byerley, Bishop of Salisbury (Burgess), Bishop of Bristol (Gray), Sir A. Halliday, Bucke, S. Buckingham, Professor Lee, Captain Maconochie, Colonel Galindo, George Canning, G. P. R. James, Lord W. Lennox, Frank Mills, Keightley, Crowe, Basil Hall, Belzoni,* John Lander, Dr. O. Wood, C. B. Mackay, Dawson Turner, A. J. Kempe, Beazley, J. Burnett, Payne Collier, James Hogg, Sir J. Barrow, Professor Sedgwick, A. Dyce, Lord Nugent, Miss Porter, Lemon (State Paper Office), Major Denham (African Traveller), J. Wilson Croker, and many more, formed a phalanx of varied talent and genius which, within the limits of some five years I have glanced my eye over, illustrated the publication with a mass of miscellaneous intelligence, originality in prose and verse, pleasant humour, and masterly criticisms in science, art, and literature, of which I, the nominal head of the solid and brilliant band, reaped the benefit, and had much reason to be proud of, as an honour unparalleled by anything hitherto conferred upon the periodical press.

With the majority of these parties, and a far wider

* I append a remarkably prophetic note by this famed traveller:

“On Benin’s fatal shore my feeble bark I’ll strand,
My grave is already prepared—six feet deep,
An anas† marks the spot.
The negroes’ friendship to me will prove sweet
When they know I come from a far distant isle—

† Illegible, apparently an African tree.

circle of scientific men, artists, authors, and their friends and patrons, my intercourse was intimate and genial; and the “charmed life,” under such circumstances, may he faintly conceived by every one who has a relish for refined and intellectual enjoyments. Even the drawbacks were gilded and the troubles smoothed. Thus I find myself appealing to my co-proprietors for more efficient aid to lighten my incessant labours and anxieties; and complaining of the great sacrifice of my peculiar interests to those of my partners. The expences and burthen of the duties had indeed increased to an oppressive extent, now that reviewing was more closely and comprehensively attended to, also the fine art criticisms, the reporting of all scientific bodies, together with the drama, music, and collecting intelligence from all quarters. Of these my exertions had opened many new sources for publicity, and the time occupied in obtaining the passing information had become a perfect struggle.

On the event of refusal I offered to retire from the excessive toil for a moderate sum; but Messrs. Longmans and Colburn (or rather the former) considered it expedient to agree to a portion of my proposition, and although not satisfying my mind on the score of liberality, at any rate reconciling me to remain in my station and continue my task with undiminished energy. As the world knows that authors and publishers never can entirely coincide in their views, and that dissensions will occur in the best regulated agreements, I shall merely notice as an important concern in my course, that I had frequent disputes, or sorenesses, with the great house in the Row, to disturb our general good understanding; and was so hurt by some of these which I construed into a want of liberality and justice, that I refused to be a party to an entertainment given, by sub-
scription of friends, to
Mr. Rees on his retiring from the firm. This I afterwards regretted much, for though I was full of resentment at the time, I entertained very kindly feelings of regard towards that gentleman (as well as every other member of the house, individually), and he died shortly after he left the fatigues of business to seek repose for his closing years in a sweet picturesque retreat in his native Wales, where I visited his brother at a long after date, and shed a tear to the memory of many joyous hours I had spent in the society of Owen Rees.

In the midst of my other occupations in Brompton, I had the honour to be elected a vestryman, when the Incumbent, Mr. Frye, a gentleman of great piety and learning, with a highly accomplished lady, adorned the Church and the society of the neighbourhood. Nevertheless, our vestry-meetings were rather droll affairs, the questions being of small importance (except the election of my friend, and sometimes help, as a musical critic, Miss Wilkinson, to be the organist), and one or two of my coadjutors, though parochially well to do, not overstocked with the fruits of education. One man, a builder in a large way, used to put me down when I was not sufficiently serious in argument, by rising to “move that we (the vestry), be very particular.” Once I remember, inter alia, in endeavouring to interpret a local act, he was utterly confounding the sense, and I pointed out to him a comma which governed the true reading, but instead of then moving that We be very particular, he turned short round to me and exclaimed, “Pray, Sir, don’t talk to me of a comma: I don’t care for fifty commas!” And neither did he, nor for any other sort of punctuation; but I gained the whip-hand by this flight, and could generally get rid of his long-winded propensities and
continual ridiculous motions ever after, by moving the insertion of fifty commas as an amendment, thus—, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ! Altogether, as a relaxation, I found the vestry evenings under the church-roof amusing enough; and two or three old friends would adjourn the meeting to a welcome parlour, a sober rubber, or a game at Boston, a slight refection, a glass of toddy, a merry family chat, and to bed.

On higher occasions, as I have intimated, the company I had the pleasure and honour to receive at Grove House made what one’s familiars would call “field days.” The highest ministers of the Crown, distinguished nobility, foreign ambassadors, eminent characters in the learned professions, and those who were equally eminent in congenial pursuits in every branch of intellectual pursuit, mingled together at my social board, and if I might judge from their willingness to repeat my obligation, were not indisposed to enjoy parties so arranged, as I could arrange them, for mutual gratification in the interchange of mind and hospitable courtesies.

Sometimes, when few and select in number, my invitation list being suggested by one of my guests, the dining-room or drawing-room (a very handsome one, by the way, built by Sir John Macpherson to entertain the Prince Regent), was discovered to be a convenient place for the reception of an official red box or two, which were unreservedly opened in my presence, for my offer to retire was always negatived, and the contents freely mentioned and even discussed. I believe that ministers are often glad of such unwatched opportunities to receive dispatches, and that the treatment I experienced at this period was precisely of the same nature as they knew I had been accustomed to from Mr. Canning, and proceeded on the principle that full confidence was the
surest pledge that could be imposed in order to ensure inviolable secresy. Be this, however, as it may, I frequently witnessed the seals broken, and the premier, secretaries of state, and heads of departments, make use of my accommodations in the manner I have described.

Arising out of this interesting, and, I opine, uncommon species of intercourse for a person of my humble rank, I came to be engaged on several missions of considerable importance, but the particulars of which fall within that veil of secresy to which I have alluded, and from which they cannot yet, if ever, be removed. I may, however, without any risk, divulge a few of the objects and circumstances to which I refer.

One of my negotiations related to a plan affecting the London newspaper press generally, and involving matters deemed to be of much national consequence. My temporary colleagues in this affair are still living and deservedly esteemed in the land. They know with what fervour and diligence I wrought in the cause, but it could not be carried into effect then, and, as under changes that have since taken place, it never can be propounded again, I bid farewell to a subject which cost my brain some taxing, and might have been productive of memorable results. This much from Delphos.

Another mission also related, but specifically, to a daily paper. By some means it had got indoctrinated with a view of a foreign policy in which it believed (not aware of the quarter whence its facts and opinions were derived), but which was decidedly misrepresented, and not only inconvenient to our government, but calculated to involve the country in war, and ministers were consequently most desirous to avoid the discussion of the questions to which it tended. I was employed to avert or mitigate the evil, and was not only
well instructed in the intricacies of the case, but well armed with the sinews of palpable power. I managed at some charge to produce a negation of cons to the pro, but in spite of my exertions the business began to assume a grave appearance, and I was authorised to proceed to head-quarters and represent, with perfect truth, the dangers incurred by proceeding in the line of argument adopted.

I saw, by appointment, the individual with whom the decision lay. I explained to him the object of those by whom he was so far misled, and only by comparing notes, enabled him to be certain of the fallacies of his informants; I then pointed out the difficulties thence accruing to the British cabinet, and without presuming for a moment to think of his compromising his convictions, I invited him to reconsider all that I had stated and urged, and if the journal might suffer loss from an alteration in its course, to accept of the ten thousand pound notes which I proffered to him at the moment. To the honour of the press I am bound to say that this act had almost discomfited me: the offer was instantly rejected as an unworthy bribe (which it was never meant to be), and, convinced by the information I had given and the argument I had held, the paper from that interview patriotically changed its course, and a concern of no small weight was taken off the deliberations of the council-chamber of England.

The third and last of these extra-literary incidents in my life, to which I shall advert, was one totally unconnected with my position, and purely political. In fact it was founded on a difference of opinion in the ministry. To my friends it appeared to be requisite to ascertain, by an unusual channel, the sentiments of the great foreign governments on the matter at issue, and I was thought worthy of the very delicate mission. All I can safely tell is, that out of it
grew a delightful intimacy with
Prince Esterhazy, (who, I discovered, knew more of the hidden curiosities of London than I did, who had been diving into them, aà la Dickens, for many a long year), a pleasant intercourse with Prince Lieven and his staff, one yet closer and more lasting with the Prussian ambassador, and very agreeable acquaintances with the Dutch and certain German ministers. Well, why do I record these things! Not as boasts, but as extraordinary events in relation to my real position. They flattered my self-love, they continued in full vigour the original spoilt child and juvenile system, and they lifted me in the scale of society, perhaps, above what would have been much better for me; and, assuredly, as I never sought advantage from them, but took them as an equal would take them, they rather tended to cripple than promote my worldly prosperity.

Being (my patient and forgiving reader) in the vein to “renown” myself (using a verb coined at Drummond Castle), I shall here speak a little of one of the most valued intimacies with personages above me, which has afforded me many of the happiest days of my chequered, and ultimately clouded existence. To Lord and Lady Willoughby de Eresby do I consecrate the page. I will not again dilate upon that grade of society, the ambition to attain to which is often erroneously ascribed to tuft-hunting. Tuft-hunting never succeeded in a quarter worth aiming at. Some better qualities must be conceded to individuals of inferior rank who have succeeded in conciliating the esteem and regard of persons who adorn the highest stations, by great information, generosity of heart, refinement of sentiment, and true nobleness of nature, independent of wealth and titles, impervious to presuming flattery, and self-controlled into that most fascinating of social virtues, the habit of not only
never hurting the amour-propre of others, but of saying and doing everything in so delicate and graceful a manner as to win the grateful affections of those whom they distinguish by their friendship.

I confess to entertaining on this subject sentiments the very opposite to those of the American Cooper who, when invited to Devonshire House, displayed his republican contempt for rank by ostentatiously dining at a neighbouring coffee-room; and in like wise to those of a conceited provincial poet, full of his début in print, who being taken to a lush-life soirée in town, fancied he showed himself off to admiration by relating next day that he was introduced to the Duke of Somewhere, and conversed with the Marquis and Earl of Something!

Drummond Castle, to be sure, was only inhabited by a Baron (though of illustrious descent) and a Baroness (though representing the chieftancy of one of the most famous Scottish clans), but I must acknowledge that I was always extremely proud of the honour of being received by them among the elite of the land who partook of the autumnal delights which superabounded there. I cannot picture to myself anything on earth more enjoyable. Ease and affability making every one at home, and at home with elegance and luxury; conversation full of interest and instruction, and amusements at the same time yielding playful and intellectual exercises; and the sports of the field, imparting health and nourishing vigour, such as could be excelled by no spot on the face of the globe. To be transported from the dirty ink of London to the fresh-water fishing of the splendid salmon or lively trout—from the fingering of the grey goosequill to the handling of the double-barrel (built for me under the auspices of the renowned Colonel Hawker), promising the fall of hare, and partridge, and grouse, and
black-cock, and ptarmigan, and, yea, even of the monarch of Glenartney, the royal antlered red deer, was a change as from slavery to liberty, and one’s soul expanded to drink in all the blessing.

I do not think I am, and I hope I am not precluded by the force of private considerations from instancing a few of those minor points which serve to illustrate my preceding argument with respect to the great benefits to be derived from association with the superior classes, and their being endowed with the means of conferring them in a manner at once most gratifying and improving.

On my way to Drummond Castle one autumn, I missed a letter from Lord Willoughby, addressed to me at Douglas’s Hotel, whereas my favourite resort was old Dan M’Queen’s, Edinburgh, and which missive its attendant circumstances, I doubt not, caused me to keep to this day:—

Dear Jerdan,

“On my return here to-night, I found your kind letter of the 24th. The great Highland meeting is, I think, on the 7th of October. This is the only engagement I have, and most probably you would like to see it; we can go from home in the morning and return at night. When you have settled your plans, send me a line to say the day you will be here.

“Yours truly,
“Sept. 28.”

I had seen the meeting advertised, and wished, of all things, that his Lordship might be going, and would have the goodness to take me with him. I reached the Castle in due time. We dined. I heard the carriage ordered for an early hour in the morning, and retired to bed, chagrined at not being
invited to take a Beat in it. It was a wet morning, and yet I still lamented my disappointment; till, at lunch, it was “aggravated” beyond endurance, by
Lady Willoughby telling me that his Lordship, on setting out, had remarked that the weather was too bad for a Cockney to travel such a distance for such an exhibition of unclean beasts and agricultural implements, and therefore he was glad I had not accepted his invitation. Could any thing of the kind be more vexatious! I had, of course, not hinted my desire to go, thinking it might be an inconvenient intrusion, and his Lordship had not mentioned the matter, thinking I had received his letter. I was on that day the only guest, and yet my noble host left the entertainment with which the show concluded, and drove home to dinner in compliment to his humble friend. As a general rule, when visitors were in the evening laying out their proposals for the morrow’s sports, his Lordship left the arrangements to themselves, and never even offered advice—for his advice he fancied might savour of dictation, and he might be held answerable for any failures of success. Sometimes strangers, unaware of this, would be at a loss where to choose and what to do; and it was occasionally my lot, as an experienced habitué, to be consulted on all the dispositions of parties for the various shooting grounds, from the rich home preserves of Drummond Mill to the wild mountain ranges of Glenartney, with its sanctuary for the red deer, untrodden by human footsteps. The principal keeper was then called in, and the necessary orders given accordingly.

Another rule was to leave a proportion of the game for the tenants on whose farms it was killed, and the result was, that every one was a diligent preserver, and a prompt guide to the localities where the best sport was to be found.

And, still far more laudable, the proprietors of these
splendid estates knew nothing of rack-rents, but took a deep interest and pleasure in the prosperity of all below them. What said his lordship one day, when I happened to mention that his agent at Perth told me the rental might be improved three or four thousand pounds a year? “Do you think it would make Drummond Castle more comfortable, or its inmates more happy? Did you remark the fine-looking young couple in the pew adjoining ours at chapel on Sunday? The bridegroom is the son of one of the oldest tenants, (your Vespasian*), and though he has been only three or four years in his farm, is already so well off that he can prudently afford to marry, and appear, together with his wife, gallantly dressed as you saw. Would a few pounds per annum extracted from him afford
Lady Willoughby or myself aught like the satisfaction of such a sight?”

To this let me add another example of what a wealthy landlord ought to be. Lord Willoughby instituted a fund to which, from tenant to labourer, everyone was called upon to contribute in proportion to his means, as a reserve for sickness or misfortune. When the considerable amount was ascertained, their provident and generous superiors doubled the sum, and invested the liberal total on interest for their use.

No wonder that the owners of the Drummond estates were popular and beloved by all around. I arrived one evening, via Liverpool and Glasgow, too late to dine with the tenantry assembled in the Gate House (which Lord W. had, at my

* “On these mountains the Romans attempted to reign;
But our ancestors fought, and they fought not in vain.”

So goeth the triumphal national ballad, “In the garb of old Gaul,” &c. and I mention it as a remarkable fact that many of the Highlanders in this part of the country bear striking resemblance to the busts of ancient Romans. In the instance here noticed, the farmer was so like the marble bust of Vespasian (if I remember), that being placed betide it, you might have sworn he sat for the likeness.

suggestion, re-edified and repaired), and on ringing the castle bell, was received by
Lady Willougbby herself at the door, attended by the only servant left within from the adjacent fête, and had my cold chicken washed down by sherry set before me by the noble lady’s own hand. I was then hastened to the banquet about to close for the ensuing ball, and, condescending as his lady, had my health proposed by the president, as an esteemed old friend, just arrived from London to join in their festivity. Of course I attempted a glowing speech, and when the heart is truly moved, the tongue seldom fails—even its hesitation and imperfection are expressive.—and I cannot tell how advantageous the introduction was to me; for go where I would thereafter, over hill and dale, over moor and mountain, I never failed to meet an acquaintance of the Gate House to direct me whither I was sure to meet with the best chances to fill my game-bag.

I said I would illustrate my argument by stating some “minor points,” which, nevertheless, strike my mind as forming very prominent features in a picture of True Nobility, and a pattern of those refined attentions which so essentially mark the captivation of high life intercourse. The very minutest proves the proposition most irresistibly. What you said one year is remembered and repeated the next. One year there was a discussion as to which of two clarets was preferable; I gave my opinion in favour of a Leith supply; next season it was the only wine of the kind placed on the table before me I

But the gratifications which flowed from this source were manifold and delightful in other respects. They led to connections, in some cases, only less welcome in effect from my not feeling the same extent of grateful and affectionate attachment to newer friends. Still they were
exceedingly pleasant. On one occasion
Mr. P. Burrell, than whom no companion more agreeable could be found; Lord Boringdon (now Earl of Morley), his co-equal in all that was intelligent and sociable; and myself, left Drummond Castle to wend our way to London, inspecting the principal manufacturing districts and manufactories, at leisure, as we pursued our route. In this excursion we spent a busy fortnight, beginning at Glasgow and ending at Birmingham, and I, at least, acquiring more insight into such undertakings in that short time than I had by persevering reading throughout my life. Let me earnestly recommend the same course of study to all who are emulous of knowledge in these most important concerns. Begging for information, ab initio, as if we were school-boys, we managed to become acquainted with the processes of manufacturing textile fabrics, silks, woollens, cottons, flax; of iron in its transmutations for cutlery, and vulcanic agency for railroads and machinery; of glass and pottery; of chemistry, dyeing, tanning; of ship-building, dock-yards, and basins; of great wares and small, from steam-engines to dolls’ eyes; and so, through all that challenged investigation, from Perthshire to Middlesex, viâ Glasgow, Liverpool, Manchester, Staffordshire, Birmingham, and other sites of great commercial enterprise and industry. In every place we were treated with marked civility, generally attended by a principal; information patiently and liberally communicated, and, if I remember rightly, only in one trifling case permitted to give a douceur in acknowledgment of the attention shown to us. Of many entertaining incidents which enlivened our search for information, I can recall a hearty laugh at Manchester, where we followed the Turkish Ambassador in the survey of a silk factory. The master was a fine portly example of an honest John Bull, and in a spacious attic room, two or three
hundred young children, seated at desks like school, were employed in a minute division of the labour. The Pasha looked at the parties with a sort of astonished gaze, and turning to the manufacturer, exclaimed, “Ver fine famlee! how many wifes you got?” At
Lord Morley’s beautiful seat at Saltram, richly endued with the finest works of Sir Joshua, I had, some years after, the opportunity of renewing our laugh at the silk-family; and passing a charmed week of the British Association at Plymouth, there in company with the Marquis of Northampton, Dr. Buckland, Lady de Dunstanville, Sir John and Lady Charlotte Guest, &c., could I help thinking gratefully of Drummond Castle for having introduced me to so fortunate a treat!

From the same origin resulted visits to Ravensworth Castle and other seats, where I found all the joys which England, well managed, can so plenteously afford, and which no foreign land can approach; and I trust that I have not yet experienced the last of these pleasures, though age may have somewhat dimmed their brightness and rendered me more dull than of old to furnish my quota to the common stock. I may still live to see the lucky horse-shoe which I found in a field, and with genuine Highland superstition nailed to the entrance into Drummond Castle; and the decided consequence of which was, that on that very night Lady Willoughby and I turned the whist table effectually on Lord Cadogan and Mr. T. Liddell, who had beaten us unmercifully during several preceding evenings. I could long linger on my recollections of this earthly paradise, but I must tear myself away, and only notice the invaluable experiments in which I occasionally took part, and always strong interest, and by which Lord Willoughby succeeded in preparing compressed peat fuel from the turf, and led the way to an economic use of this material, which has been gradually expanding over the
kingdom, and especially Ireland, to the infinite benefit of the community. For many purposes it is superior to coal; in many places distant from coal, and destitute of wood, it is a domestic treasure; it may nourish manufactures in barren districts, where no manufacture could otherwise be established; it may enlarge the limits of steam; and it may be made a mine of national wealth: and for all this, and more, the country is indebted to Lord Willoughby de Eresby; not to a practical man of science, or able engineer, but to a high-born nobleman and British Peer. The theme is so worthy, that I seem to have slipped involuntarily from prose into verse; but an epic could hardly tell all I feel towards that scene where “My heart’s in the Highlands.” I venture on the freedom to append another brief note, one of many, to evidence the gratifying terms which led me, “wrapt in measureless content,” to my worshipped turret-room, whence the lovely garden, in the perfect Italian style of the sixteenth century, was seen at my feet, contrasting with the distant expanses of rich heather, bearing the eye away to the splendid mountain scenery that closed the horizon. It is not surprising that our beloved Sovereign, her accomplished consort, and as many as can of her loyal subjects, should long for a breath of the Highland air. On me its efficacy was like magic. My gun, which was at first a load, within a week had not the apparent weight of a straw, so rapidly had health and strength been recruited by the glorious exercise and vivifying clime.

Dear Jerdan,

“I am sorry that you have put off your journey to so late a period, as I fear most of our friends will have left us before the time you mention; but if you will take your chance of finding us alone, it will give Lady Willoughby
and myself great pleasure to see you. This is not a good season for game, and the weather has been detestable, but in farming I never saw the country look better, and I have no complaints of any sort except against the bank. As you are kind enough to take such interest in this great concern, I am sorry to say that my experiments have been much restricted by the constant rain, and the imperfect construction of the machine, but I have great hopes of ultimate success. Send me a line to say the day we may expect you.

“Yours truly,
“Drummond Castle. Crieff, Sept. 15.”

Too often high rank and riches are denied some of the best emotions which are naturally felt in the middle and lower classes. They have no experience of the difficulties that beset, the poverty that consumes, and certain sorrows of circumstance that blast the dearest hopes of the strugglers in life. They cannot, therefore, enjoy the perfect luxury of a fellow-feeling with the sufferers. But when, from observation, and the degree of sympathy it creates, they arrive at the same point, homo sum, humani nihil à me alienum puto, it is almost a sublime achievement, and the God within, though moved to tenderness and mercy by another sense, is as divine as where stirred by brotherly love, closer communion, and warmer sentiment!

I may note a short visit to Taymouth, and the Marquis and Marchioness of Breadalbane, as among my most pleasant reminiscences in the enchanting Highlands. With the noble Lady’s family at Mellerstain, near Kelso, my boyhood was acquainted, and from her Ladyship I received rites of hospitality such as are given to an old friend. Taymouth itself, splendid as it is, possessed greater charms for me in its
northern antiquities, and, above all, in “the Black Book of the Campbells,” an ancient domestic diary of the most extraordinary character, which the noble owner brought to my bed-chamber, and thereby bereaved me of a whole night’s sleep: for I could not quit the grip of such an MS. as that.*

* Among instances of a similar nature, displaying the character of true nobility, I may mention an anecdote of the famous lyrist, Captain Morris, and the late Lord Lonsdale. When the Reform Ministry cut down the pension list, Morris’s pension was reduced to one-half, which coming to the ear of this munificent peer, he indited an admirably delicate letter to the poet, reminding him of the debt he owed for many pleasant hours, and, though of the opposite school in politics, begging his acceptance of the amount of the defalcation, annually from him. Morris’s answer was equally honourable in gracefully declining the boon, his old age not requiring the indulgence he had imagined so desirable in his youth!—W. J.