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by the side of the Tay, and remarked, what an excellent fancy it was to shut out the view of the river, so that you might hear the stream without seeing it. Mr. Blubber, however, objected to the vicinity of the bills, and Mrs. Blubber to that of the lake, which she was sure must be extremely unwholsesome. To this circumstance she imputed her rheumatism, which she told us, had been very troublesome to her the
first night she lay'd there, but that she had alI ways the precaution of carrying a bottle of Beaume i de Vie in the chaise, and that a dose of it had ef. fectually cured her.'
The ladies were delighted with the Hermitage. Mrs. Blubber confessed, she was somewhat afeardi at first to trust herself with the guide, down a s dark narrow path, to the lord knows where ; but
then it was so charming when he let in the light 1 upon them.'-'Yes, and so natural,' said her eldest daughter, with the flowers growing out of the • wall, and the Bears-skins so pure soft for the Her• mit to sleep on.'- And their garter-blue colour • so lively and so pretty,' said Miss Betsey ; * I vow I • could have staid there for ever. ---You wa’n't • there, Papa.'— No,' replied he, rather sullenly, • but I saw one of them same things at Dunkeld, ( next day.'-The young ladies declared they wert quite different things, and that no judgment could be formed of the one from the other ; upon which Mr. Blubber began to grow angry; and Mrs. Blubber interposing, put an end to the question ; whispering me, at the same time, that her husband had fallen asleep, after a hearty dinner at the inn near Taymouth, and that she and her children had gone to see the Hermitage without him. I was farther informed, that Mr. Edward Blubber had left their party at this place, having gone along with two English gentlemen whom he met there, to see a
great many curiosities farther off in the Highlands.
For my part,' said Blubber, though I was told
it was a great way off, and over terrible moun. “ tains, as indeed we could perceive them to be from r the windows, I did not care to hinder his going, • as I like to see spirit in a young man.'
The rest of the family returned by the way of Dunkeld, which the ladies likewise commended as a monstrous pleasant place. Mr. Blubber dissented a little, saying,' he could not see the pleasure of always
looking at the same things; hills, and wood, and ' water, over and over again. The river here, he
owned, was a pretty rural thing enough; but, for « his part, he should think it much more lively if it
had a few ships and lighters on it.' Miss Blubber did not agree with him as to the ships and lighters; but she confessed, she thought a little company would improve it a good deal. Miss Betsey differed from both, and declared, she relished nothing so much as solitude and retirement. This led to a description of a second hermitage they had visited at this place, from which, and some of the grottoes adjoining, Miss Betsey had taken down some sweet copies of verses, as she called them, in her memorandum-book. The fall of water here had struck the family much. Mrs. Blubber observed, how like it was to the cascade at Vauxhall; her eldest daughter remarked, however, that the fancy of looking at it through panes of different-coloured glass in the Hermitage-room, was án improvement on that at Spring-gardens. : The bridge at Perth was the last section of the family journal that we discoursed on. The ladies had inadvertently crossed it in the carriage to see the palace of Scone, at which they complained therc was nothing to be seen ; and Mr. Blubber complained of the extravagance of the Toll on the bridge, which he declared was higher than at Blackfriars. He was assured, however, that he had paid no more than the legal charge, by his landlord, Mr. Marshall, at whose house he received some consolation from an excellent dinner, and a bed, he said, which the Lord Mayor of London might have laid on. I hope there • is no offence (continued Mr. Blubber, very polite
ly ; as I understand the landlord is an Englishman:
but, at the King's Arms, I met with the only real I good buttered toast that I have seen in Scotland.'
But however various were the remarks of the fa. mily on the particulars of their journey in detail, I found they had perfectly settled their respective opi. nions of travelling in general. The ladies had formed their conclusion, that it was monstrous pleasant, and the gentleman his, that it was monstrous dear.
N° 42. SATURDAY, JUNE 19, 1779.
When I first undertook this publication, it was suggested by some of my friends, and, indeed, accorded entirely with my own ideas, that there should be nothing of religion in it. There is a sacredness in the subject that might seem profaned by its introduction into a work, which, to be extensively read, must sometimes be ludicrous, and often ironical. This consideration will apply, in the strongest m nner, to any thing mystic or controversial ; but it may, perhaps, admit of an exception, when rc. ligion is only introduced as a feeling not a system, as appealing to the sentiments of the heart, not to the disquisitions of the head. The following story holds it up in that light, and is therefore, I think, admissible into the MIRROR. It was sent to my editor as a translation from the French. Of this my readers will judge. Perhaps they might be apt to suspect, without any suggestion from me, that it is an original, not a translation. Indeed I cannot help thinking, that it contains in it much of that pic. turesque description, and that power of awakening the tender feelings, which so remarkably distinguish the composition of a gentleman whose writings I have often read with pleasure. But, be that as it may, as I felt myself interested in the narrative, and believed that it would affect my readers in the like manner, I havé ventured to give it entire as I received it, though it will take up the room of three successive papers.
To the Author of the MIRROR.
More than forty years ago, an English philosopher, whose works have since been read and admired by all Europe, resided at a little town in France. Some disappointments in his native country had first driven him abroad, and he was afterwards induced to remain there, from having found, in this retreat, where the connections even of nation and language were avoided, a perfect seclusion and retirement highly favourable to the developement of abstract subjects, in which he excelled all the writers of his time. Perhaps, in the structure of such a mind as Mr.
's, the finer and more delicate sensibilities are seldom known to have place, or, if originally implanted there, are in a great measure extinguished
by the exertions of intense study and profound investigation. Hence the idea of philosophy and unfeel. ingness being united, has become proverbial, and in common language, the former word is often used to express the latter. Our philosopher had been censured by some, as deficient in warmth and feel. ling : but the mildness of his manners has been allowed by all ; and it is certain, that if he was not easily melted into compassion, it was, at least, not difficult to awaken his benevolence.
One morning, while he sat busied in those spe. culations which afterwards astonished the world, an old female domestic, who served him for a housekeeper, brought him word, that an elderly gentleman and his daughter had arrived in the village, the preceding evening, on their way to some distant country, and that the father had been suddenly seized in the night with a dangerous disorder, which the people of the inn where they lodged feared would prove mortal ; that she had been sent for, as having some knowledge in medicine, the village-surgeon being then absent; and that it was truly piteous to see the good old man, who seemed not so much afflicted by his own distress, as by that which it caused to his daughter. Her master laid aside the volume in his hand, and broke off the chain of ideas it had inspired. His night-gown was exchanged for a coat, and he followed his gouvernante to the sick man's apartment.
'Twas the best in the little inn where they lay, but a paltry one notwithstanding. Mr. --was obliged to stoop as he entered it. It was floored with earth, and above were the joists not plastered, and hung with cobwebs.' On a flock-bed, at one end, lay the old man he came to visit ; at the foot of it sat his daughter. She was dressed in a clean white bed-gown; her dark locks hung loosely over