Imagens da página

Major Melville, filling his glass and pushing the bottle to Mr Morton, comnienced.

.“ A distressing affair this, Mr Morton: I fear this youngster has brought himself within the compass of an halter.".

"God forbid !” answered the clergy. man. . .

. .

: ) .“ Marry and amen," said the temporal magistrate ; "but I fear your merciful logic will hardly deny the conclusion.” .?

, “Surely, Major, I should hope it might be averted, for aught we have heard tonight.".'}, " Apoi i propos

" Indeed -But, my good parson, you are one of those who would communicate to every criminal the benefit of clergy."* ..

“Unquestionably would: Mercy and long-suffering are the grounds of the doce trine I am called to teach" . “True ; but mercy to a criminal may be gross injustice to the community. I don't speak of this young fellow in-particular, who I heartily wish may be able to

clear himself, for I like both his modesty and his spirit. But I fear he has rushed upon his fate.”

!“ And why? -Hundreds of misguided gentlemen are now in arms against the government, many, doubtless, upon principles which education and early preju. dice have gilded with the names of patriotism and heroism ;-Justice, when she selects her victims from such a multitude, (for surely all will not be destroyed,) must regard the moral motive. He whom ambition, or hope of personal advantage, has led to disturb the peace of a well-ordered government, let him fall a victim to the laws; but surely youth, misled by the wild visions of chivalry and imaginary loyalty, may plead for pardon.”

." If visionary chivalry and imaginary loyalty come within the predicament of high treason, I know no court in Christendom, my dear Mr Morton, where they can sue out their Habeas Corpus.”

"But I cannot see that this youth's guilt is at all established to my satisfac; tion.”

. ii .. .." Because your good nature blinds your good sense. Observe now. This young man, descended of a family of hereditary Jacobités, his uncle the leader of the tory interest in the county of t his father a disobliged and discontented courtier, his tutor a non-juror, and the author of two treasonable volumes-This youth, I say, enters into G 's dragoons, bringing with him a body of young fellows from his uncle's estate, and who have not sticked at avowing, in their way, the high church principles they learned at Waver, ley.Honour, in their disputes with their comrades. To these men young Waverley is unusually attentive; they are supplied with money beyond a soldier's wants, and inconsistent with his discipline; and are under the management of a favourite serjeant, through whom they hold an unusus, ally close communication with their cap

tain, and affect to consider themselves as independent of the other officers, and superior to their comrades." ?.." All this, my dear Major, is the natural consequence of their attachment to their young landlord, and their finding them. selves among a regiment levied chiefly in the north of Ireland and west of Scotland, and disposed to quarrel with them, both as Englishmen, and as of the church of England.”.

stii s i ...". Well said, parson! I would some of your synod, heard you— But let me go on This young man,obtains leave of absence, goes to Tully-Veolan--the priņciples of the Baron of Bradwardine are pretty well known, not to mention that this lad's uncle brought him off in the year fifteen; he engages then in a brawl, in which he is said to have disgraced the commission hệ bore; Colonel G- writes to him, first mildly, then more sharply I think you will not doubt his having done so, since he says so; the mess invite him to explain

the quarrel in which he is said to have been engaged; he neither replies to his commander nor his comrades. In the mean while his soldiers become mutipous and disorderly, and at length, while the tu. mour of this unhappy rebellion becomes general, his favourite Serjeant Houghton, and another fellow, are detected in correspondence with a French emissary, accredited, as he says, by Captain Waverley, who urges him, according to the men's confession, to desert with the troop and join their captain, who was with Prince Charles. In the meanwhile this trusty captáid is, by his own admission, residing at Glennaquoich with the most active, subtle, and desperate Jacobite in Scotland; he goes with him at least as far as their famous hunting rendezvous, and I fear a little farther. Meanwhile two other'summonses are sent him; one warning him of the disturbances in his troop, another peremptorily ordering him to repair to the regiment, which indeed com

« AnteriorContinuar »