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shall not be me nor mine." Even as staid not to profit by our aid; for the old mariner addressed himself to when he perceived us near he uttered the wrecked ships a young man ap- a piercing shriek of joy, and bounded peared at the southern extremity of the towards us through the agitated elebay, holding his halve-net in his hand, ment the full length of an oar. and hastening into the current. Mark him for a second on the surface of the rose, and shouted, and waved him back water; but the eddying current sucked from a place which, to a person unac- him down ; and all I ever beheld of quainted with the dangers of the bay, him again was his hand held above the real and superstitious, seemed suffi- flood, and clutching in agony at some ciently perilous : his grand-daughter imaginary aid. I sat gazing in horror too added her voice to his, and waved on the vacant sea before us: but a her white hands; but the more they breathing-time before, a human being; strove the faster advanced the peasant full of youth, and strength, and hope, till he stood to his middle in the wa was there : his cries were still ringing ter, while the tide increased every mo- in my ears and echoing in the woods ; ment in depth and strength. “ Andrew, and now nothing was seen or heard Andrew,” cried the young woman, in save the turbulent expanse of water, a voice quavering with emotion, “turn, and the sound of its chafing on the turn, I tell you : () the Ships, the shores. We pushed back our shallop, Haunted Ships !" but the appearance and resumed our station on the cliff beof a fine run of fish had more influence side the old mariner and his descendwith the peasant than the voice of bon- ant. “Wherefore sought ye to peril nie Barbara, and forward he dashed, your own lives fruitlessly ?” said Mark, net in hand. In a moment he was “ in attempting to save the doomed. borne off his feet, and mingled like Whoso touches those infernal ships foam with the water, and hurried to never survives to tell the tale. Woe wards the fatal eddies which whirled to the man who is found nigh them at and roared round the sunken ships. midnight when the tide has subsided But he was a powerful young man, and and they arise in their former beauty, an expert swimmer : he seized on one with forecastle and deck, and sail, and of the projecting ribs of the nearest pennon, and shroud. Then is seen hulk, and clinging to it with the grasp the streaming of lights along the waof despair, uttered yell after yell, sus- ter from their cabin windows, and taining himself against the prodigious then is heard the sound of mirth and rush of the current. From a sheeling the clamour of tongues, and the inferof turf and straw, within the pitch of a nal whoop and hallo, and song, ringbar from where we stood, came out an ing far and wide. Woe to the man old woman bent with age, and leaning who comes nigh them.” To all this on a crutch. “I hear the voice of that my Allanbay companion listened with lad Andrew Lammie ; can the chield a breathless attention. I felt somebe drowning that he skirls sae uncan- thing touched with a superstition to nilie?” said the old woman seating which I partly believed I had seen one herself on the ground, and looking victim offered up; and I inquired of earnestly at the water.
, the old mariner, How and when she continued, “ he's doomed, he's came these haunted ships there? To doomed; heart and hand can never me they seem but the melancholy relics save him; boats, ropes, and man's of some unhappy voyagers, and much strength and wit, all vain! vain ! he's more likely to warn people to shun dedoomed !” by this time, I had thrown struction, than entice and delude 1'in myself into the shallop, followed reluc- to it.”' “ And so," said the old man tantly by Richard Faulder, over whose with a smile, which had more of sorcourage and kindness of heart super- row in it than of mirth; stition had great power; and with one young man, these black and shattered p ish from the shore, and some exertion hulks seem to the eye of the multitude. in skulling, we came within a quoit- But things are not what they seem : Cast of the unfortunate fisherman. He that water, a kind and convenient ser
66 Ou aye,
66 and so,
vant to the wants of man, which seems dangerous quicksands and headland of so smooth, and so dimpling, and so Borranpoint. On the deck of the foregentle, has swallowed up a human soul most ship not a living soul was seen, or even now; and the place which it shape, unless something in darkness covers, so fair and so level, is a faith- and form resembling a human shadow less quicksand, out of which none es- could be called a shape, which flitted cape. Things are otherwise than they from extremity to extremity of the seem. Had you lived as long as I ship, with the appearance of trimming have had the sorrow to live; had you the sails and directing the vessel's seen the storms, and braved the perils, course. But the decks of its compairand endured the distresses which have ion were crowded with human shapes; betallen me; had you sat gazing out the captain, and mate, and sailor, and on the dreary ocean at midnight on cabin boy, all seemed there ; and imm a haunted coast ; had you seen com- them the sound of mirth and minstrelsy rade after comrade, brother after bro- echoed over land and water. The coast ther, and son after son, swept away which they skirted along was one of by the merciless ocean from your very extreme danger; and the reapers shoutside ; had you seen the shapes of ed to warn them to beware of sandfriends, doomed to the wave and the bank and rock; but of this friendly quicksand, appearing to you in the counsel no notice was taken, except dreams and visions of the night; then that a large and famished dog, which would your mind have been prepared sat on the prow, answered every short for crediting the maritime legends of with a long, loud, and melancholy mariners; and the two haunted Danish howl. The deep sand-bank of Carse. ships would have had their terrors for thorn was expected to arrest the career you, as they have for all who sojourn of these desperate navigators: but they on this coast. Of the time and the passed, with the celerity of waterfowl, cause of their destruction I know noth- over an obstruction which had wreck 'ing certain : they have stood as you ed many pretty ships. have seen them for uncounted time; “ Old men shook their heads and and while all other ships wrecked on departed, saying, “We have seen the this unhappy coast have gone to pieces, fiend sailing in a bottomless ship ; let and rotted, and sunk away in a few us go home and pray: but one young years, these two haunted hulks have and wilful man said, “ Fiend! I'll war. neither sunk in the quicksand, nor has rant it's nae fiend, but douce Janet a single spar on board been displaced. Wither-shins, the witch, holding a caMaritime legend says, that two ships rouse with some of her Cumberland of Denmark having had permission, cummers, and mickle red wine will be for a time, to work deeds of darkness spilt atween them. Dod I would gladand dolour on the deep, were at lastly have a toothfu’! I'll warrant it's condemned to the whirlpool and the nane o' your cauld sour slae-water like sunken rock, and were wrecked in this a bottle of Baillie Shrinkie's port, but bonnie bay, as a sign to seamen to be right drap-o’-my-heart's-blood stuff that gentle and devout. The night when would waken a body out of their last they were lost was a harvest evening linen. I wonder where the cummers of uncommon mildness and beauty : will anchor their craft?' And I'll the sun had newly set; the moon vow,' said another rustic, the wine came brighter and brighter out; and they quaff is none of your visionary the reapers, laying their sickles at the drink, such as a drouthie body has root of the standing corn, stood on rock dished out to his lips in a dream; nor and bank, looking at the increasing is it shadowy and unsubstantial like magnitude of the waters, for sea and the vessels they sail in, which are made land were visible from Saint Bees to out of a cockle shell or a cast-off-slipBarnbourie. The sails of two vessels per, or the paring of a seaman's right were soon seen bent for the Scottish ihumb-nail. I once got a hansel outcoast : and with a speed outrunning of a witch's quaigh myself, -auldathe swiftest ship they approached the rion Mathers of Dustiefoot, whom they
tried to bury in the auld kirk-yard of sels melted away beneath their feet; Dunscore, but the cummer raise as fast and one loud shriek, mingled with as they laid her down, and nae where laughter still louder, was heard over else would she lie but in the bonnie land and water for many miles. Nothgreen kirk-yard of Kier among douce ing more was heard or seen till the and sponsible fowk. So I'll vow that morning, when the crowd who came the wine of a witch's cup is as fell li- to the beach saw with fear and wonder quor as ever did a kindly turn to a poor the two Haunted Ships, such as they man's heart; and be they fiends or be now seem, masts and tackle gone ; nor they witches, if they have red wine mark, nor sign, by which their name, asteer, I'll risk a drouket sark for ae country, or destination could be known, glorious tout ont. Silence, ye sin- was left remaining. Such is the tradiners,' said the minister's son of a tion of the mariners; and its truth has neighbouring parish, who united in his been attested by many families whose own person his father's lack of devo- sons and whose fathers have been tion with his mother's love of liquor. drowned in the haunted bay of Blaw
Wbisht !-speak as if ye had the fear hooly.” of something holy before ye. Let the " And trow ye,” said the old wovessels run their own way to destruc- man, who, attracted from her hut by tion; who can stay the eastern wind, the drowning cries of the young
fisherand the current of the Solway sea ? Í man, had remained an auditor of the can find ye Scripture warrant for that: mariner's legend;
66 And trow ye, so let them try their strength on Blaw- Mark Macmoran, that the tale of the hooly rocks, and their might on the Haunted Ships is done ? I can say no broad quicksand. There's a surf run- to that. Mickle have mine ears heard; ning there would knock the ribs to- but more mine eyes have witnessed gether of a galley built by the imps of since I came to dwell in this humble the pit, and commanded by the Prince home by the side of the deep sea. I of Darkness. Bonnilie and bravely mind the night weel : it was on Halthey sail away there ; but before the lowmass eve: the nuts were cracked, blast blows by they'll be wrecked; the apples were ate, and spell and and red wine and strong brandy will charm were tried at my fireside; till, be as rise as dyke-water, and we'll wearied with diving into the dark drink the health of bonnie Bell Black- waves of futurity, the lads and lasses ness out of her left-foot slipper.' The fairly took to the more visible blessspeech of the young profligate was ap- ings of kind words, tender clasps, and plauded by several of his companions, gentle courtship. Sost words in a and away they flew to the bay of Blaw- maiden's ear, and a kindlie kiss o’her hooly, from whence they never return- lip, were old world matters to me, ed. The two vessels were observed Nark Macmoran; though I mean not all at once to stop in the bosom of the to say that I have been free of the folbay, on the spot where their bulls now ly of daunering and daffin with a youth appear: the mirth and the minstrelsy in my day, and keeping tryste with waxed louder than ever; and the forms him in the dark and lonely places. of maidens, with instruments of music However, as I say, these times of enand wine cups in their hands, thronged joyment were passed and gone with the decks. A boat was lowered; and me; the mair's the pity that pleasure the same shadowy pilot who conduct- should fly sae fast away—and as I ed the ships made it start towards the could nae make sport I thought I should shore with the rapidity of lightning, not mar any; so out I sauntered into and its head knocked against the bank the fresh cold air, and sat down bewhere the four young men stood, who hind that old oak, and looked abroad longed for the unblest drink. They on the wide sea. I had my ain sad
leaped in with a laugh, and with a thoughts, ye may think, at the time : · laugh were they welcomed on deck; it was in that very bay my blythe good
wine cups were given to each, and as man perished, with seven more in his they lifted them to their lips the ves- company, and on that very bauk
where ye see the waves leaping and produced the like transformation ; and foaming, I saw seven stately corses away the three spectre ships bounded, streeked, but the dearest was the eighth. leaving a track of tire behind them on It was a woeful sight to me, a widow the billows which was long unextinwith four bonnie boys, with nought to guished. Now was nae thai a bonnię support them but these twa hands, and and a fearful sight to see beneath the God's blessing and a cow's grass. I Hallowmass moon ? But the tale is far have never liked to live out of sight of frae finished; for mariners say that this bay since that time; and mony's once a year, on a certain night, if ye the moonlight night I sit looking on stand on the Borranpoint, ye will see these watery mountains and these the infernal shallops coming snoring waste shores; it does my heart good, through the Solway: ye will hear the whatever it may do to my head. So same laugh, and song, and mirth, and ye see it was llallowmass night; and minstrelsy, which our ancestors heard; looking on sea and land sat I ; and see them bound over the sand-banks my heart wandering to other thoughts and sunken rocks like sea-gulls, cast soon made me forget my youthful com- their anchor in Blawhooly bay, while pany at hame. It might be near the the shadowy figure lowers down the howe hour of the night : the tide was boat, and augments their numbers with making, and its singing brought strange the four unhappy mortals to whose old world stories with it; and I thought memory a stone stands in the kirkon the dangers that sailors endure, the yard, with a sinking ship and a shorefates they meet with, and the fearful less sea cut upon it. Then the specforms they see. My own blythe good- tre ships vanish, and the drowning man had seen sights that made him shriek of mortals, and the rejoicing grave enough at times, though he aye laugh of fiends are heard, and the old tried to laugh them away. Aweel, hulls are left as a memorial that the atween that very rock aneath us and old spiritual kingdom has not departed the coming tide, I saw, or thought I from the earth. But I maun away, saw, for the tale is so dream-like that and trim my little cottage fire, and the whole might pass for a vision of make it burn and blaze up bonnie to the night, I saw the form of a man: warm the crickets, and my cold and his plaid was grey ; his face was grey; crazy bones, that maun soon be laid and his hair, which hung low down till aneath the green sod in the eerie kirkit nearly came to the middle of his yard.” And away the old dame totback, was as white as the white sea- tered to her cottage, secured the door foam. He began to howk and dig un on the inside, and soon the hearth-flame der the bank; an' God be near me, was seen to glimmer and gleam through thought I, this maun be the unblessed key-hole and window. spirit of Auld Adam Gowdgowpin, “ I'll tell ye what,” said the old the miser, who is doomed to dig for mariner, in a subdued tone, and with shipwrecked treasure, and count how a shrewd and suspicious glance of his many millions are hidden for ever from eye after the old sybil, it's a word man's enjoyment. The Form found that may not very well be uttered, but something which in shape and hue there are many mistakes made in evenseemed a left-foot slipper of brass ; so ing stories if old Moll Moray there, down to the tide he marched, and where she lives, knows not mickle placing it on the water, whirled it more than she is willing to tell of the thrice round; and the infernal slipper Haunted Ships and their unhallowed dilated at every turn, till it became a mariners. She lives cannilie and quibonnie barge with its sails bent, and on etly; no one knows how she is fed or board leaped the Form, and scudded supported; but her dress is aye whole, swiftly away He came to one of the her cottage ever smokes, and her table Haunted Ships; and striking it with lacks neither of wine, white and red, his oar, a fair ship, with mast,
and can- nor of fowl and fish, and white bread vass, and mariners, started up: he and brown. It was a dear scoff 10 touched the other Haunted Ship, and Jock Matheson, when he called old
Moll the uncannie carline of Blawhoo- their last linen, as well as their last ly: his boat ran round and round in shilling, through sorrow for her loss, the centre of the Solway,—every body But married was the dame; and home said it was enchanted,—and down it she was carried, to bear rule over home went head foremost : and had nae Jock and her husband, as an honest woman been a swimmer equal to a sheldrake should. Now ye maun ken that though he would have fed the fish ;-but I'll the flesh and blood lovers of Alexanwarrant it sobered the lad's speech; der’s bonnie wife all ceased to love and and he never reckoned himself safe till to sue her after she became another's, he made auld Moll the present of a there were certain admirers who did new kirtle and a stone of cheese.” not consider their claim at all abated, “O father,” said his grand-daughter or their hopes lessened by the kirk's Barbara,.“ ye surely wrong poor old famous obstacle of matrimony. Ye Mary Moray : what use could it be to have heard how the devout minister of an old woman like her, who has no Tinwald had a fair son carried away, wrongs to redress, no malice to work and bedded against his liking to an unout against mankind, and nothing to christened bride, whom the elves and seek of enjoyment save a cannie hour the fairies provided: ye have heard and a quiet grave—what use could the how the bonnie bride of the drunken fellowship of fiends and the communion laird of Soukitup was stolen by the faiof evil spirits be to her ? I know Jen- ries out at the back-window of the briny Primrose puts rowan-tree above the dal chamber, the time the bridegroom door-head when she sees old Mary com- was groping his way to the chamber ing; I know the good wife of Kittle- door; and ye have heard—but why naket wears rowan-berry leaves in the need I multiply cases ? such things in headband of her blue kirtle, and all for the ancient days were as common the sake of averting the unsonsie glance as candle-light. So ye'll no hinder of Mary's right ee; and I know that certain water elves and sea fairies, the auld laird of Burntroutwater drives who sometimes keep festival and his seven cows to their pasture with a summer mirth in these old haimted wand of witchtree, to keep Mary from hulks, from falling in love with the milking them. But what has that to weel-faured wife of Laird Macharg; do with haunted shallops, visionary and to their plots and contrivances mariners, and bottomless boats? I have they went how they might accomplish heard myself as pleasant a tale about to sunder man and wife ; and sunderthe Haunted Ships and their unworld- ing such a man and such a wife was ly crews as any one would wish to hear like sundering the green leaf from the in a winter evening. It was told to summer, or the fragrance from the me by young Benjie Macharg, one flower. So it fell on a time that Laird summer night, sitting on Arbigland Macharg took his halve-net on his bank: the lad intended a sort of love back, and his steel spear in his hand, meeting; but all that he could talk of and down to Blawhooly bay gade he, was about smearing sheep and shearing and into the water he went right besheep, and of the wife which the Nor- tween the two haunted hulks, and plaway elves of the Haunted Ships made cing his net awaited the coming of the for his uncle Sandie Macharg. And I tide. The night, ye maun ken, was shall tell ye the tale as the honest lad mirk, and the wind lowne, and the told it to me.
Alexander Macharg, singing of the increasing waters among besides being the laird of three acres of the shells and the peebles was heard peatmoss, two kale gardens, and the for sundry miles. All at once lights owner of seven good milch cows, a pair began to glance and twinkle on board of horses, and six pet sheep, was the the two Haunted Ships from every husband of one of the handsomest wo- hole and seam, and presently the sound men in seven parishes. Many a lad as of a hatchet employed in squaring sighed the day he was brided; and a timber echoed far and wide. But if Nithsdale laird and iwo Annandale the toil of these unearthly workmen moorland farmers drank theruselves to amazed the Laird, how much more was