Abbildungen der Seite

when you are at the extent of your distance, you have a better chance; because in this case, when you do reach him, your line will be straight, and when you do not, the intermediate failures will not alarm him.

'XV.-Ít appears to me that, in whipping with an artificial fly, there are only two cases in which a fish taking the fly will infallibly hook himself without your assistance, viz. :

1. When your fly first touches the water at the end of a straight line.

2. When you are drawing out your fly for a new throw.

'In all other cases it is necessary that, in order to hook him when he has taken the fiy, you should do something with your wrist which it is not easy to describe. ·XVI.-If

your line should fall loose and wavy into the water, it will either frighten away the fish, or he will take the fly into his mouth without fastening himself; and when he finds that it does not answer his purpose, he will spit it out again, before it has answered yours.

XVII.-Although the question of fishing up or down the stream is usually settled by the direction of the wind, you may sometimes have the option; and it is therefore as well to say a word or two on both sides.

'1. If, when you are fishing down-stream, you take a step or two with each successive throw, your fly is always travelling over new water, which cannot have been disturbed by the passing of your line. 2. When you are fishing up-stream, you may lose the advan:age

of raising so many fish; but, on the other hand, you will have a better chance of hooking those which rise at your fly, because the darting forward of a fish seizing it has a tendency to tighten your line and produce the desired effect.

'3. If you are in the habit of sometimes catching a fish, there is another great advantage in fishing up-steam, viz., whilst you are playing and leading (necessarily down-stream) the fish which you have hooked, you do not alarm the others which are above you, waiting till their turn comes.

XVIII. The learned are much divided in opinion as to the propriety of whipping with two flies or with one. I am humbly of opinion that your chance of hooking fish is much increased by your using two flies; but I think that, by using only one, you increase your chance of landing the fish.

'XIX.-When you are using two flies, you can easily find the on the top of the water, and thus be sure that the end-tly is not far off

. When you are using only one fly, you cannot so easily see where the fly is; but I think that you can make a better guess as to where the fish is likely to be after you have hooked him.

' XX.-Also, when you are using two flies, you may sometimes catch a fish with one of them, and a weed growing in the river with the other. When such a liaison is once formed, you will find it difficult, with all your attractions, to overcome the strong attachment of the fish to your worthless rival the weed. * XXI.-If the weed will not give way in the awkward juncture above

alluded your

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

alluded to, you must proceed to extremities. " Then comes the tug of war;" and your line is quite as likely to break between you and the fish, as between the fish and the weed.

*XXII. - When, during the season of the May-fly, your friends, the gentlemen from London, say that they “ have scarcely seen a fish rise all day," do not too hastily conclude that the fish have not been feeding on the fly. - Marims and Hints for an Angler, pp. 3—12.

The May-fly season is, indeed, the jubilee of anglers; and then, and then only, we believe, are Houghton Shallows taboo'd for all but meinbers of the delightful club to which our author belongs. Every fisherman looks for the time with impatience. An experienced dweller near one of our southern trout-streams was strictly charged to send the earliest intimation to his patron in London of the advent of this anxiously-looked for insect. letter came in these words :

Honoured Sir,—He is not come down yet, but we expect him down early next week.

· Your humble servant to command,

" A. B.' It would have puzzled the uninitiated to guess what personage was expected; but the angler at once recognised news of the May-fly, acted upon the information, and was not disappointed.

We cannot resist another hint or two:• XXX.–Never mind what they of the old school say about "playing him till he is tired.” Much valuable time and many a good fish may be lost by this antiquated proceeding. Put him into your basket as soon as you can. Everything depends on the manner in which you commence your acquaintance with him. If you can at first prevail upon him to go a little way down the stream with you, you will have no difficulty afterwards in persuading him to let you have the pleasure of seeing him at dinner.

XXXI.- Do not be afraid of filling your pockets too full when you go out; you are more likely to leave something behind you than to take too much. A man who seldom catches a fish at any other time usually gets hold of one (and loses him of course) while his attendant is gone back for something which had been forgotten.

*XXXII.-If your attendant is a handy fellow at landing a fish, let him do it in his own way: if he is not, try to find a better man, or go home. Although so much depends upon his skill, you will rarely derive much comfort from asking him for his opinion. If you have had bad sport, and say to him, " Which way shall we go now?” he will most proba

you please, sir.”

If you ask him what he thinks of
the weather, he is very likely to say that last week (when you were in
London) it was “ famous weather for fishing;” or he will perhaps say
that he expects that next week (when you are to be at home again) it
will be very good. I never knew one of these men who was satisfied
with the present hour.
*XXXIII.- Do not leave off fishing early in the evening because

[ocr errors]

bly say,

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

p. 20.

your friends are tired. After a bright day, the largest fish are to be caught by whipping between sunset and dark. Even, however, in these precious moments, you will not have good sport if you continue throwing after you have whipped your fly off. Pay attention to this; and if you have any doubt after dusk, you may easily ascertain the point, by drawing the end of the line quickly through your hand, particularly if you do not wear gloves.'-Ibid., pp. 17--19.

The concluding maxim must not be omitted :

*XXXV.—Lastly-When you have got hold of a good fish, which is not very tractable, if you are married, gentle reader, think of your wife, who, like the fish, is united to you by very tender ties, which can only end with her death, or her going into weeds. If you are single, the loss of the fish, when you thought the prize your own, may



of some more serious disappointment.'-Ibid.,

The last sentence is touching : its tone reminds us of the Eheu Evelina of dear old Jonathan Oldbuck, and we sincerely hope that this sigh of the amiable author is not for himself: if it be, it is easy to guess who has been the greatest loser.

But this is tender ground, and the Miseries of Fishing are yet unnoticed. Not a word will we extract, though the short dry cough of the young miller, and the anguish of the hero, are almost irresistible. The pretty little book is illustrated by capital cuts, some of them furnished by “very famous hands.' ; Beginning early,' by Chantrey, is a jewel : the eager look at the selected fly, held between the spectacled eye and the light for closer scrutiny, is beyond praise. Mr. Jones and Mr. Lea have also given elegant contributions. Every fisherman knows the indescribable thrill that pervades the nervous system from the unbroken communication between the angler and a heavy fish. This highly excited state of animal magnetism may be best inferred from the state of collapse that ensues if the fish breaks your line, or, as the fisherman says, “ breaks you'-leaving you with a feeling that your back-bone is gone with him. Such a deplorable condition is represented to the life in the cut at p. 46. "We dare go no further not even to dwell on the charms of small trout fried with crisped parsley, so delicately as not to soil the white damask on which they are presented. But here is an envoy from Dame Julyana

• The angler atte the leest hath his holsom walke, and mery at his ease, a swete air of the swete savoure of the meede floures, that makyth him hungry; he hereth the melodyous armony of fowles; he seeth the yonge swannes, herons, cotes, and many other fowles, wyth their brodes; whyche me seemeth better than all the noyse of houndys, the blastes of hornys, and the scrye of foulis, that hunters, fawkeners, and foulers can make. And if the angler take fysshe, surely thenne is there noo man merier than he is in his spyryte.'


Art. VII.-1. A Letter to the Lord Chancellor on the Claims of

the Church of Scotland in Regard to its Jurisdiction ; and on
the proposed Changes in its Polity. By John Hope, Esq.,
Dean of Faculty. 2nd Edition. Edinburgh. 1839.
Remarks on the Present Position of the Church of Scotland.

By Thomas Chalmers, D.D. 4th Edition. Glasgow. fragen

The Speech of the Right Honourable the Earl of Aberdeen in
the House of Lords on Tuesday, May 5. 1840. London.

The Earl of Aberdeen's Correspondence with the Rev. Dr.
Chalmers and the Secretaries of the Non-Intrusion Committee.
1840. Edinburgh.
What ought the Church and the People of Scotland to do now?
By Thomas Chalmers, D.D. and LL.D. Glasgow.

Glasgow. 1840.

Min far An humble Attempt to put an end to the presene Divisions in

T' the Church of Scotland, and to promote her Usefulness. By

the Rev. Lewis Rose, A.M., Minister of the Duke Street sites Gaëlic Church, Glasgow. Glasgow. 1840.

'HE present situation of the Church of Scotland is one which

it is impossible to contemplate without astonishment. It is possible to disguise that the line of conduct on which the

jority of its clergy are now acting involves principles inconsistent with the very existence of an establishment, and subversive indeed of all government. Let not our English readers suppose that the question at issue is merely one as to the check or control to be exercised by the people over the exercise of church patronage. That question, important as it was in the outset, has since merged in far more vital considerations. A Protestant Established Church-the child of the law in as far as it is an establishment,-reviving in the nineteenth century the claims of Popery, asserts her absolute independence of the law in all matters which she herself shall define to be spiritual ; refuses obedience to the sentence of the law which declares her proceedings to be an invasion of civil rights; proceeds to punish by suspension from their clerical offices those of her members who as subjects felt themselves constrained amidst this divided duty' to yield obedience to the law of the land; and yet continues to retain the temporalities which she holds only in virtue of that very law which she sets at defiance ! Meantime, although the present incumbents retain their endowments, every new presentation by a patron may give rise to a new resistance to law, and result in leaving the parish destitute of any established minister.

For while on the one hand the Church refuses to admit the presentee to the charge, on the other the law declares the temporalities to be the property of the patron, whose presentee


has been illegally rejected. The fund provided by the State is withdrawn; and thus at no distant period half the parishes in Scotland may be left dependent on a precarious and voluntary provision for the services of religion. This is the shape which the question, originally regarding the alleged right of the people to reject a presentee without reasons assigned, has now assumed. This is the state of matters with which the Legislature, if it is to interfere, has to deal; and that some interference is imperatively called for, seems now to be the conviction of all.

In treating of this most painful subject there are two points on which we should wish not to be misunderstood ; first, that we take the law as laid down, and mean to re-agitate in the shape of formal discussion no legal questions which have already been decided by the House of Lords :- In the next place, and once for all, we mean to convey no imputation against the motives or integrity of those clergymen by whom the counsels of the Church of Scotland have been mainly directed. That the great majority of these are men of sterling worth-pursuing an end which they believe to be for the interests of religion—we have not the least intention to dispute. We consider them as the unconscious dupes and instruments of a few artful intriguers, and hot-headed agitators.

When the first motion towards a change in the law of the Church of Scotland, with regard to the appointment of its ministers, took place in 1832, that law, as understood to be fixed by statute and practice, was in substance this :—That the right of presentation to the benefice belonged to the patron; the right of objecting to the presentation, but always upon reasons stated and substantiated, to any member of the congregation; the right of determining upon these reasons to the church courts. admitted, even by those least favourable to patronage, that the church which had grown up under this system, so far from being in a decaying or falling state, was in a most flourishing condition. • The practical effect of that church on the general information of the people, on their private morals, and on their religious character,' was stated by one of the most pious and learned of its ministers, Sir Henry Moncreiff, “to equal, if it did not surpass, what could be imputed in the same points to any other church in the world.'

It was undoubtedly not a very easy, or at first sight a very promising task, to persuade the people of Scotland that a system which had led to such results-results not disputed by any of the advocates of Presbyterianism was an evil which called for reform. Accordingly, the first attempts made to inflame the popular mind

* Lord Moncreiff's Evidence on Patronage.

It was


« ZurückWeiter »