Johnson had been very well pleased with him in London. But my fellow-traveller and I were now full of the old Highland spirit, and were dissatisfied at hearing of rents racked and a chief not surrounded by his clan. Dr. Johnson said, “Sir, the Highland chiefs should not be allowed to go farther south than Aberdeen. A strong-minded man, like [his brother] Sir James Macdonald, may be improved by an English education; but in general they will be tamed into insignificance."(1)

We found here Mr. Janes of Aberdeenshire, a naturalist. Janes said he had been at Dr. Johnson's in London, with Ferguson the astronomer. JOHNSON. "It is strange that, in such distant places, I should meet with any one who knows me. I should have thought I might hide myself in Sky."

Friday, Sept. 3.-This day proving wet, we should have passed our time very uncomfortably, had we not found in the house two chests of books, which we eagerly ransacked. After dinner, when I alone was left at table with the few Highland gentlemen who were of the company, having talked (2) with very high respect of Sir James Mac

(1)" But my fellow-traveller and I were now full of the old Highland spirit, and were dissatisfied at hearing heavy complaints of rents racked, and the people driven to emigration; and finding a chief not summoned by his clan, Dr. Johnson said, It grieves me to see the chief of a great clan appear to such disadvantage. This gentleman has talents, nay, some learning; but he is totally unfit for his situation.' I meditated an escape from this house the very next day; but Dr. Johnson resolved that we should weather it out till Monday."- First Edit.

(2) Here, in the first edition, was a leaf cancelled, which, no doubt, contained some of the original strictures of the "Journal"



donald, they were all so much affected as to shed tears. One of them was Mr. Donald Macdonald, who had been lieutenant of grenadiers in the Highland regiment, raised by Colonel Montgomery, now Earl of Eglintoune, in the war before last; one of those regiments which the late Lord Chatham prided himself in having brought from "the mountains of the north" by doing which he contributed to extinguish in the Highlands the remains of disaffection to the present royal family. From this gentleman's conversation, I first learnt how very popular his colonel was among the Highlanders; of which I had such continued proofs, during the whole course of my Tour, that on my retu I could not help telling the noble Earl himself, that I did not before know how great a man he was.

We were advised by some persons here to visit Rasay, in our way to Dunvegan, the seat of the Laird of Macleod. Being informed that the Rev. Mr. Donald M'Queen was the most intelligent man in Sky, and having been favoured with a letter of introduction to him, by the learned Sir James Foulis (1), I sent it to him by an express, and re

on Sir Alexander Macdonald's want of hospitality and spirit.-C.

(1) Sir James Foulis, of Collinton, Bart. was a man of an ancient family, a good scholar, and a hard student; duly imbued with a large share both of Scottish shrewdness and Scottish prejudice. His property, his income at least, was very moderate. Others might have increased it in a voyage to India, which he made in the character of a commissioner; but Sir James returned as poor as he went there. Sir James Foulis was one of the few Lowlanders whom Highlanders allowed to be well skilled in the Gaelic, an acquaintance which he made late in life. WALTER SCOTT.

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quested he would meet us at Rasay; and at the same time enclosed a letter to the Laird of Macleod, informing him that we intended in a few days to have the honour of waiting on him at Dunvegan.

Dr. Johnson this day endeavoured to obtain some knowledge of the state of the country; but complained that he could get no distinct information about any thing, from those with whom he conversed.

Saturday, Sept. 4.-My endeavours to rouse the English-bred chieftain, in whose house we were, to the feudal and patriarchal feelings, proving ineffectual, Dr. Johnson this morning tried to bring him to our way of thinking. JOHNSON. "Were I in your place, Sir, in seven years I would make this an independent island. I would roast oxen whole, and hang out a flag as a signal to the Macdonalds, to come and get beef and whisky." Sir Alexander was still starting difficulties. JOHNSON. Nay, Sir; if you are born to object, I have done with you. Sir, I would have a magazine of arms." SIR ALEXANder. They would rust." JOHNSON. "Let there be men to keep them clean. Your ancestors did not use to let their arms rust." (1) We attempted in vain to communicate to him a portion of our enthusiasm. He bore with so polite a good-nature our warm, and what some might call Gothic, expostulations on this subject,


(1) Dr. Johnson seems to have forgotten that a Highlander going armed at this period incurred the penalty of serving as a common soldier for the first, and of transportation beyond sea for a second offence. And as "for calling out his clan," twelve Highlanders and a bagpipe made a rebellion.- WALTER SCOTT. [See Johnson's letter to Mrs. Thrale of the 23d. Sept.]


that I should not forgive myself were I to record all that Dr. Johnson's ardour led him to say. This day was little better than a blank.

Sunday, Sept. 5.-I walked to the parish church of Slate, which is a very poor one. There are no church bells in the island. I was told there were once some; what was become of them, I could not learn. The minister not being at home, there was no service. I went into the church, and saw the monument of Sir James Macdonald, which was elegantly executed at Rome, and has an inscription, written by his friend, George Lord Lyttelton.(1)

Dr. Johnson said, the inscription should have been in Latin, as every thing intended to be universal and permanent should be. (2)

This being a beautiful day, my spirits were cheered by the mere effect of climate. I had felt a return of spleen during my stay at Armidale, and had it not been that I had Dr. Johnson to contemplate, I should have sunk into dejection; but his firm

(1) Which, as well as two letters, written by Sir James, in his last illness, to his mother, will be found in the Appendix, No. III.

(2) What a strange perversion of language! — universal! Why, if it had been in Latin, so far from being universally understood, it would have been an utter blank to one (the better) half of the creation, and, even of the men who might visit it, ninety-nine will understand it in English for one who could in Latin. Something may be said for epitaphs and inscriptions addressed, as it were, to the world at large-a triumphal arch

the pillar at Blenheim-the monument on the field of Waterloo; but a Latin epitaph, in an English church, appears, in principle, as absurd as the dinner, which the doctor gives in Peregrine Pickle, after the manner of the ancients. A mortal may surely be well satisfied if his fame lasts as long as the language in which he spoke or wrote. — C.

ness supported me. I looked at him, as a man whose head is turning giddy at sea looks at a rock, or any fixed object. I wondered at his tranquillity. He said, "Sir, when a man retires into an island, he is to turn his thoughts entirely to another world. He has done with this." BOSWELL. "It appears to me, Sir, to be very difficult to unite a due attention to this world, and that which is to come; for, if we engage eagerly in the affairs of life, we are apt to be totally forgetful of a future state; and, on the other hand, a steady contemplation of the awful concerns of eternity renders all objects here so insignificant, as to make us indifferent and negligent about them." JOHNSON. "Sir, Dr. Cheyne has laid down a rule to himself on this subject, which should be imprinted on every mind: 'To neglect nothing to secure my eternal peace, more than if I had been certified I should die within the day; nor to mind any thing that my secular obligations and duties demanded of me, less than if I had been insured to live fifty years more."

I must here observe, that though Dr. Johnson appeared now to be philosophically calm, yet his genius did not shine forth as in companies, where I have listened to him with admiration. The vigour of his mind was, however, sufficiently manifested, by his discovering no symptoms of feeble relaxation in the dull, " weary, flat, and unprofitable" state in which we now were placed.

I am inclined to think that it was on this day he composed the following Ode upon the Isle of M 3

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