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[TRADITION does not inform us who was the author of the following poem nor is it known in what age it was composed. It is obviously to be inferred, however, from internal evidence, that it is of great antiquity. It is the only Gaelic lyric extant which professes to have been composed previous to the fifteenth century; for the reputed works of Ossian and other contemporary bards, and the imperfect poem entitled Mordu, all belong to the class of heroic poetry. Two translations have already appeared, one in measured prose, by John Clark, author of The Caledonian Bards, the other in rhyme, by Mrs Grant of Laggan. Both these were made from incorrect copies; and this, with the translators' ignorance of old Gaelic, led them to misunderstand the whole tenor of the poem, besides committing many minor mistakes. Clark further imitated Macpherson's Ossian, though the style of that celebrated work is very different from that of our Bard. The following version is literal-almost verbal-except in a few instances where the Gaelic idiom is so different, that a very close rendering would not convey the true sense of the original. The Gaelic consists throughout of quatrains in iambic dimeters, the third line rhyming with the first, and the fourth with the second.]

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There are a small lake and stream in Lochaber which still bear this name.

† Gaelic, lon. This word is generally understood to mean an elk. It is now quite obsolete, and is found nowhere but in old poems.

The bard here addresses his son. The next three or four stanzas are obscure. Mr Clark translated from a different version. As the traditional account which he gives of this part may render it more intelligible, it is here subjoined.

"The bard, who was himself a chief, had an only son, who fell deeply in love with Lavinia, (Lavín ?) the beautiful daughter of Thalbar. Lavinia was drowned as she was bathing in the lake of Triga, (Treig?) Morlav, the bard's son, becoming despe rate, sailed for the Orkney Isles, hoping to fall in the wars of that prince, who was then at variance with the King of Norway. His valour and good conduct, however, gained him great fame; and after the Norwegians were defeated and expelled the Isles, the Prince, in consideration of his services and personal merit, offered Morlav his daughter in marriage, which he refused, and retired to a cave in a lonely isle, where his father heard that he still continued to mourn his lost Lavinia."

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Oh! bear me near the sounding fall, That pours with murmurs from the rock;

Beside me lay my harp and shell, And the shield which shelter'd my sires in war.

Come thou mildly over the deep,
O friendly gale! that movest slow;
And bear my shade upon thy wings,
With speed unto the Nobles' Isle.*

Where are the heroes that lived of

Who, sleepless, listen to their songs?
Open your hall, Ossian and Dâlo;
By night the bard is no more!

But oh! before my shade depart
To the final abode of bards on high,
Give me once more my harp and

Then, loved harp and shell, adieu!



ATTEND to my song, ye contributors all,
Now met to be merry in Ebony Hall:
Since justice has fully been done to the feast,
And the fury of hunger a moment has ceased,
Your hearts, I am sure, will allow it is fit
To drink, with due honours, a bumper to Kit!


A bumper to him, whose illustrious name
For ever must float on the full tide of fame;
While our little bark in attendance may sail,
Pursuing the triumph, and sharing the gale :
The fame will be ours on our tombs to have writ,
Here lies, who contributed something to Kit!


But while he is our head, and we're each but a limb,
He could do without us, though not we without him:
For were all his auxiliaries laid on the shelf,

He could knock off in no time a Number himself;
Let but steam and stenography help him a bit,
What tomes and what treasures might issue from Kit!


It is true he is old; but 'tis easily seen,

Though his age may be gouty, it also is green :
He is garrulous, too, his detractors repeat;
But where was garrulity elsewhere so sweet?
Oh! never did old age and eloquence sit

Half so comely on Nestor as now upon Kit!

* Gaelic-Flad innis. The heaven of the old Scots. None of the Highland bards who lived subsequent to the universal prevalence of Christianity talk in this strain ; and therefore it is to be inferred that the author of this poem flourished previous to that period.


And though thus resembling the Pylian Sire,
He has Ajax's force and Achilles's fire,

The softness that dwelt in Andromache's breast,
With the Ithacan's slyness to season the rest.
No wonder in Homer he made such a hit,
When Iliads and Odesseys centre in Kit!


The Crutch!-what a weapon in Christopher's hand!
The wind of its waving what force can withstand!
Its wondrous achievements will ne'er be forgot
In quelling the Cockney and stunning the Stot:
It will crack you a crown as your nail would a nit-
Woe, woe, to the wretch that encounters with Kit!


Yet think not his heart without pity or ruth,

Or the Crutch ever raised save for virtue and truth;
His motto is noble, proclaim it aloud-

To spare the submissive and punish the proud:
When his eye with benignity's beam is uplit,
What magic can equal the kindness of Kit!


Ere Christopher came a new era to bring,
The prose of the press was a pitiful thing:

There was hardness of heart, or else thickness of skull,
The witty were wicked, the worthy were dull:
The bright reconcilement of wisdom and wit-
To whom do we owe it ?-entirely to Kit!


P When riot and wrong seem'd to rule in our isle,
And the boldest and best held their breath for a while,
Still true to his country and true to his creed,
Was Christopher found in the hour of our need:
When the ship on the breakers seem'd ready to split,
The first boat to save her was mann'd by old Kit!


The times are much mended, but some things remain
That may call for the hand of the hero again:

For what with the Chartists, and what with the Church,
The law is of late rather left in the lurch.

Then his patriot rage may he never remit,

Till he floors every foeman of order and Kit!


Now may Christopher live, till in number we see
His years and his articles almost agree;

And may Maga's adherents, the high and the low,
Enjoy the best blessings her bounties bestow :
Even down to the devils, that never will quit,
But keep constantly howling for copy from Kit!


And here let our QUEEN put a close to my song-
May her life and her love both be happy and long!

A health to the youth whom her choice makes our own,
May her heart prove a dow'ry more rich than her throne;
And may all bad advisers be soon forced to flit,

And replaced by true subjects and sages like Kit!

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