Abbildungen der Seite

brae is replenished with bushes, and every bush vocal, -is to be ascribed the good health which our youth generally enjoy, and the enthusiasm with which every native thinks and speaks of Leader haughs and Tweedside

· Yes! let the rich deride, the proud disdain,

These humble blessings of the lowly train ;
To me more dear, congenial to my heart,
One native charm, than all the gloss of art.'

“ I recollect the friendships of youth with reverence. They are the embraces of the heart of man ere vice has polluted, or interest diverted, its operations. In the churchyard of Earlstoun lies the friend of my youth. John Anderson was a young man of the gentlest manners and of unassumed piety. Often, when the public service of the church was over, have we wandered among the broom of Cowdenknowes, and talked of the power of that Being by whose hands the foundations of the mountains we beheld were laid, and by whose pencil the lovely scene around us was drawn, and by whose breath the flowers among our feet were perfumed. On our knees have we many a time in succession lifted up our hearts to him for knowledge, for pardon, for the formation of his image in the soul. We looked forward to the days of coming prosperity, and fondly hoped it might please God that, hand in hand, we should pass through life to that world we were taught to love and aspire after. But Heaven thought otherwise, and by a consumption carried my friend to the grave in the bloom of life. I cannot, even at this

distance of time, read his letters, but the recollection of the past overcomes my soul with weakness.

“ John Anderson had a sister: if ever piety and mildness of soul, with most becoming softness, inhabited a female form, it was the form of that excellent young woman. Through solicitude about her brother, she caught his disorder. I hurried to Earlstoun the moment I heard of her danger: she made an effort to rise up to receive me. "My brother, my brother, he whom you so loved, is gone! I heard the trampling of the horses' feet as his funeral passed by the door. I shall soon be with him. My God will supply all my wants out of his fulness in glory by Christ Jesus.' Her strength was spent; — in four days after, I held the cord which let her down into the grave. She was buried in the grave adjoining to her brother's, and but ten days after his interment. · They were lovely in their lives, and in their deaths they were not divided.' They were the boast of the village. Their memory is still fragrant; reproach could not sully their fair character; I do not remember of an enemy they ever, had. Their religion was truly like apples of gold in pictures of silver. Farewell, my earliest friend ! I will hold up your image to my heart, and trace on my own the sincerity, friendship, love, and goodness of yours.”*

* The above John Anderson was the brother of the late Mr. Anderson, surgeon in Selkirk, the father of Mrs. Mungo Park. With Mr. Park, who was a native of the same part of the country as himself, Mr. Waugh was on terms of great intimacy; and when in London in 1805, previous to his setting out on his

One of his surviving class-fellows at Earlstoun school, who has attained to honourable distinction in his profession, has kindly favoured us with an account of this interesting period of his life :“ Alexander Waugh was the most active, lively boy at the school, and the leader of all frolics. It was impossible to detain him at home in the mornings : he was often out before sunrise ; and

second journey to Africa, in which he lost his life, Mr. Park, with Mr. Alexander Anderson, his brother-in-law, who accompanied him on his travels, was in the habit of spending the greatest past of his spare time at Mr. Waugh's. Independent of the interest taken by him in the extension of geographical knowledge, Mr. Waugh was deeply solicitous for the temporal and eternal interests of the inhabitants of that unhappy country; and the manner in which they might be best promoted upon the return of those two interesting men from their hazardous undertaking was by them all fondly and ardently anticipated. Mr. Anderson had not the appearance of a strong man: he wanted the athletic form and well-braced nerves of Park, whom, however, he was firm in his determination to accompany, notwithstanding an apprehension delicately expressed one evening by Mr. Waugh, that the climate might be more distressing in its effects upon him than upon Mr. Park, who immediately replied, with great animation, “ My dear friend, I have no fear of him ; he's the very man for the climate. I'll bring him back as tough as wire.” Poor fellow! he died a very few months after they set out on their journey.

At this time, Mr. Waugh became acquainted with the late Sir Joseph Banks, who kindly and voluntarily communicated to him any intelligence he received of the travellers ; and when the first report of Mr. Park's death reached this country, Sir Joseph sent Mr. W. immediate word. It may be observed, that Mr. W. thought, from the first, that there was sufficient consistency in the report, not then generally credited, to warrant him in not entertaining any hope of its being either premature or false.

the places he visited were Carrolside, Cowdenknowes, but more generally Gaitheugh, distant about two miles,-a steep ravine opposite Old Melrose, for ages noted as the best cover for foxes in all the country. When asked, on his return at breakfast-time, where he had been, his answer generally was, “I have been seeing foxy, and hearing the linnets.' His taste for the beauties of nature was born with him, and constituted a leading feature of his mind. It was at Gaitheugh that, one morning, he fell from a tree, when climbing for a gled's nest, and lay for some time insensible, no one being with him. In the midst of all his rambles and frolics, he was the best scholar at school, especially in Latin, and equal to any of the other boys in Greek. Many a time his classfellows exerted themselves to excel him, but in general failed. Most of his companions rose in after-life to respectable rank, either in the military or medical department. Here he learned to play on the violin, of which he was very fond.”

Besides the accident mentioned by his classfellow, he had nearly lost his life at Gordon, when, during one of his childish rambles, he fell into a peat hagg, where he would have been inevitably drowned but for the efforts of his brother Thomas, who caught him by his clothes, and rescued him. The same watchful eye which saved David, when a stripling, from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear, and preserved him to be the sweet singer of Israel, watched over Alexander Waugh in his childhood and youth, and elevated him to a sphere of distinguished usefulness in the church



of Christ. There are few who cannot recollect instances of the signal interposition of a gracious Providence, when there was but a hair's breadth betwixt them and death. “ Bless the Lord, O my soul! who hath redeemed thy life from de. struction, and crowned thee with loving-kindness and tender mercy.”

It is pleasant, amidst all the youthful sprightliness which characterised this spirited and lively boy, to find the principles of fervent piety deeply rooted in bis heart. He read the Scriptures frequently and devoutly, delighted in secret prayer, and laboured to imbibe the holy temper of Him “ who increased in wisdom and stature, in favour with God and man.” It is stated by one of the few surviving companions of his boyhood, that it was their custom, perhaps in the spirit of a very natural desire to imitate their superiors in years, to meet together under the shade of an elder-tree, whose withered trunk still remains, and with much decorum to conduct the ordinary services of a prayer-meeting. On these occasions, Alexander Waugh, being the eldest boy, generally offered up the prayers; and it was from observing the early indications of the opening qualities of bis head and heart thus given, (and no doubt most gratefully listened to by his mother, who stood concealed in the vicinity), that her mind was first impressed with the desire of fitting him for the sacred ministry. We are also informed by one of his earliest associates at Gordon, that before he left Earlstoun school, when he was little more than fifteen years of age, he occasionally

« ZurückWeiter »