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whom the poet sang, that all their grees of information of his audience; subsequent actions would have be. so that they might appear wondercome uninteresting, as flowing from ful, but not incredible. Virgil's great the polluted source of vulgar insolence excellence is delicacy of sentiment and or sel6ch meanness. Though we are expression, joined to the most technow, perliaps, less fastidious than they nical skill and just feeling in dreswere upon such points of morality, sing out and embellishing every cir." we still appear to be much more so cumstance or incident, that he emthan either the Athenians or Ro- ploys ; but in the appropriation of mans were at the respective periods those circumstances and incidents, 'to of their highest degrees of civiliza. persons and characters, he is general. lion and refinement; for such a scene ly less happy than Tasso, and in no as that of Euripeda, abuse alluded degree whatever to be compared with 10, would not now be borne on any him, “cui nec viget quidquam si. stage ; and every
modern read.. mile aut secumdum." er of the Eneid finds, that the episode of Dido, though in itself the inost exquisite piece of composition
SCOTTISH REVIEW. existing, weakers extremely the sub. sequent interest of the poein ;
it Pamphlets o lligkiand Emigration. being impossible to sympathize either
1. Strictures and Remarks on the cordially or kindly with the fortunes
Earl of Selkirk's Observations on or exertions of a hero who sneaks anay from his high- minded and
the Present State of the Highlands much-injured benefactress in a man
of Scotland. By Robert Brown, so base and unmanly. When,
Esq. 8vo. too, we find him soon after imitating
2. Remarks on the Earl of Selkirk's all the attrocities, and surpassing the
Observations, &c. 8vo. 6s. utmost arrogance of the furious and
3. Eight Letters to the Earl of Selvindictive Achilles, witbout display.
kik, Svo. 28. (d. second edit.' ing any of his generosity, pride, or IN
N our number for August last, we energy,
he becomes at once mean and took a view of Lord Selkirk's ve. odious, and only excites scorn and in- ry interesting publication. It appeadignation ; especially when, at the red to 16 to be founded on the most conclusion, he presents to the unfor. sound principles of political economy, tunate Lavinia a hand stained with and the facts which it stated accord. the blood of her favoured lover, ed sufficieptly with what was generalwhom he had stabbed while begging ly understood to be the present state for quarter, and after being rendered of the Highlands of Scotland. . At incapable of resistance.
the same time, if these could be proIndeed, I cannot but think, in spite ved to have no foundation, most of of all that critics have said of the his Lordship’s conclusions would no judgement of Virgil, as opposed to doubt fall to the ground. It be. tbe invention of Homer, that if there comes important, therefore, to en. be any quality, in which the author quire whether or not the above of the Iliad stands pre eminently su. pamphlets contain any satisfactory perior to all his followers, or imita. refutation of the statements contain iors, it is in that of judgement, or ed in that work. Of the three, we a just sense of propriety in adapting consider Mr Brown's as the most vaactions to persons, and circumstances luable; for though it possesses no to characters ; and modifying his fic. pretensions to philosophy or ela. tions to the understandings and de- gance of style, it is replete wi June 1896...
ter of fact, and wears a certain solid claimant of high ancestry, who has the and practical air, which inspires con- vanity to affect the pomp and state of fidence. The är Remarks are less his grand ancestors.
Even such va. valuable in this view, though better nity is not unaccompanied with some written; and the “ Eighe letters" good effects. It generates a disregard
of, or rather a contemp: for, useful inare the best written, but contain dustry, and it also leads to pecuniary least information of all the three. embarrassments, which ultimately bring
The first question is, whether a the estate to the hammer. depopulation has actually taken place These estates are commonly transin the Highland estates. And of
ferred to men who have made money
in this there seems hardly the least trade, or in the East or West Indies.
Such new proprietors are well qualified ground to doubt. The throwing nu.
to repair all the mischiefs which the merous farms into one, the employ ridiculous affectation of chieftainship ment of machinery, and the necessity had produced. In place of a gang of under which high rents place the idle menials, which his exsublimity kept farmer of exacting from one man the about his person, and of lazy anu sloven. same degree of labour which was ly tenants, who, in place of cultivating, performed by two or three, must all wholly neglected the land; the new contribute to produce this effect. It useful industry ; and effecting the im
proprietor excites, and liberally rewards, has taken place in fact to a great ex. provement of the estate on an enlighttent, even in those parts of the low ened and prudent plan, contributes to country where great improvements the permanent capital of the nation. have been carried on; but much
Strictures p. 13. 15. more in the highlands, where the
Recruiting in the High ands is now whole number of people which the completely an an end, on the former produce of the land was capable of out an instance of any one proprietor,
plan; and his Lordship cannot point maintaining, were actually collected who sacrifices the substantial contents upon it. This depopulation is ac. of a rent-roll, for a parade of idle recordingly asserted by Lord Selkirk, tainers.
Ditto, p. 86. and amply coofirmed by Mr Brown, Is it reasonable to suppose, that a fac
tor, unless he saw it to be for the ad,
vantage of his constituent, would prefer The author is correct in stating, that
a numerous race of people on an estate the present generation of proprietors
to a few substantial tacksmen? are more intent on obtaining an ade.
He generally receives a certain perquate return in money for their lands, centage of his employer's income; and and less disposed to sacrifice their real it may easily be conceived, that if a interest, than their predecessors, whose large estate of scool. or 10,000l. aambition, warranted by sound policy, year was let to twenty or thirty tenit was to retain a numerous body of ants, the duty of the factor in upliftidle adherents. What was sound policy ing the rents, and of superintending the at one time, might prove gross folly at
internal management of the estate, would a subsequent period, when circumstan
be much more agreeable and easy, than ces were completely changed.
to collect the same rent from seven or An assertion is made, (p. 24), that eight hundred tenants, and to enter on some proprietors, from vanity or ten
complex management of a numerous derness, still retain their people, by the population. sacrifice of their pecuniary interest. But, in fact, no examples have occurred
Another circumstance, which tends in the course of my acquaintance with greatly to encrease this depopulation, the Highlands, of proprietors maintain. ing their dependents in' feudal idleness,
is the general prevalence of sheep against their own interest; though there farming. Mr Brown indeed attempts may be, perhaps, a solitary instance, of to disprove that this has any such ef. some small proprietor, the doubtfnl fect. According to him, the moun.
Ditto, p. 90.
tains now thrown into pasture were 20 or 25 years.
Now, let us apply formerly covered only with deer, this to the relative condition of G.cat roes, and wild goats; and the only Britain and America. Suppose that hardship which the Highlander suf. of the ten millions which the former fers is, being no longer able to spend country contains, one should emi his time in pursuing these animals. grate. There is no likelihood of the But if so, whence the constant com- number being nearly so great; but plaints, which we have heard, of ara. whatever holds in regard to this ble land converted into pasture, and greater, must hold still more unquesfarmers turned out to make room tionably as to any smaller number. for this new system.
However ill Now, it is evident, that in the course founded the principle of these com- of 20 years, the remaining nine milplaints may be, they could hardly lions would not only repair, but have arisen without some foundation would much more tban repair this in fact: Accordingly the author of loss. They might multiply, in that " Remarks" clearly admits the de period, to eighteen millions, a much populating tendency of pasturage, greater population than Great Britain but thinks it is now carrying to such would probably, by that time, be an extent as will lower the price of able to subsist. In tbe mean time, mutton, and oblige the Highland this diminution of numbers would landlords again to recur to the sys. render more comfortable the situatem of agriculture. However com. tion of those that remained. It would fortable a prospect
may open for produce a mitigation of all those the supply of our low country tables, evils which arise from the difficulty we are afraid it will not be soon veri- of subsistence. The great manufacfied to any great extent; nor, even turers and capitalists might doubtless supposing it certain, does it appear experience some inconvenience from what the expelled labourers are to do the increase of wages, but the condiin the mean time. The author of the tion of the great body of the people letters agrees entirely with Lord Sel. would be improved by it. kırk as to the depopulating tendency Let us now follow our colony over of the new system.
to America, to those immense de. The next question is, whether serts, through which Rochefaucault those who have been thus disposses- describes himself as travelling for sed of their farms may not be advan- days without seeing the vestige of a tageously employed in their native human habitation.
Here the great country.
Before proceeding to the want, if we may use the expression, details of this subject, it may be pro- is that of a capital stock of popula. per to enquire into the general prin- tion, with which to begin ; for a ciple, whether emigration, considered geometrical progression does not enin itself, and when not attended with crease rapidly, unless the first term individual hardship, be not really a be of some magnitude. Canada is national benefit. This position, how- not supposed by Volney to contain ever paradoxical it may be thought, above 200,000 inhabitants ; not nearappears to us to rest on the most ly the hundredth part of what it ascertained principles of political e- might be able to maintain. The conomy.
emigrating million, therefore, finding Most of our readers are probably full scope for multiplying itself, may, aware of the fact, that wherever in the course of a century, amount to there is no obstruction from the diffi- 30 millions, which, but for this ori. culty of procuring food, a nation is ginal emigration, would never have found to double its numbers every
existed, The emigration from Bri
The first year
tain to America seems therefore, in author of " Letters" has in fact as. itself, to have a decided tendency to serted, that 3 or 4000 recruits have increase the total amount of human been lately obtained, But we do not existence and enjoyment. This argu- see much occasion for government ment is rendered stronger, if we admit bestirring itself in order to furnish with Lord Selkirk, that a considera- pacific eniployment to those who ble number of men are turned out would otherwise emigrate. from their old employments, without In these pamphlets we meet with capacity or inclination for any new a good deal of information on the ones which this country may offer. state of the Highlands, which, tho' The author of “ Remarks" indeed from its partial and local nature,
it asserts, that when children are put does not seem very materially to af. very young into a cotton manufacto- fect the general question, is yet of ry, they become as good workmen as considerable interest in itself. any others; but this makes no provi. A practice, called crofting, is said sion for such as are grown up. to be becoming general. When an
We are aware that, admitting the extent of country is thrown into correctness of these general princi- sheep farms, that part of it which ples, the present period does not appears best fitted for arable is di. seem quite the most favourable for vided into lots of ten, twelve, or their application. The high wages more acres, upon each of which one given in every branch of labour, family is set down. seem to shew, that Britain does not the tenant pays, perhaps, a rent of labour under any superabundance of gs. per acre : the second 78. 6d. : inhabitants. But the most impor. and so on, until the rent may amount tant circumstance by far, is the pre- to 208. or 30s. per acre. sent political situation of the empire,
It is a curious fact, that scarcely an inand the necessity of keeping up a
stance has occurred, where a crofter, large military establishment. For
i, e, a person who holds a distinct lot of emigration, though it may be an eco. land, has shewn the smallest disposition nomical improvement, certainly tends to emigrate. This clearly shews this to diminish the national military re- mode of occupancy to be suitable to the
The more comfortable is genius and circumstances of the people ; the condition of a citizen, and the
and were it universally adopted, in all higher his wages, the less compara
proper situations, it might become an
abundant source of population. tively eligible will be the profession
It is to be observed, in 'regard to of a soldier, and the difficult
those tracts in the North-west High. will recruiting become ; 'not to men. lands and Isles, held by tacksm«n, tion the direct tendency of diminish. though not stocked with sheep,, nor ed numbers to produce fewer te
calculated for that stock, that most of cruits.
And, notwithstanding the them are approaching rapidly to a dif. change which may have taken place districts, the tacksmen's farms are fal
ferent system of management. In many in the Highland character, still, cer.
ling fast into the hands of small ten. tainly, the troops, which stormed
ants, who, instead of being cottars, or the batteries of Aboukir, and subdu. subtenants, as formerly, now hold died the invincibles on the plains of rectly of the proprietor. The proprieAlexandria, must form a most valua. tors of most of the estates on the Lang ble portion of the British army. Let Island, and other islands, have greatly
ameliorated the situation of their people, recruiting serjeants then be sent thro' the Highlands ; every man, whom by this mode of management, while, at
the same time, they have much increa. they can detain from going to Ameri. sed their in'comes. ca, is gained to his country. The Lord Selkirk seems to lay particular
stress on the statistical account given change has enabled Clanranald, not only
The estates of Boisdale, Barra, and the A few years ago, Mr Hume of Har- still more extensive estate of North ris, on his return from India, visited bis Uist, belonging to Lord Macdonald, estate for the first time after his ac- are mostly rented by small tenants, and cession to it. The estate was then, with by the judicious management of these the exception of twenty-three small ten- proprietors, yield very great revenues, ants, wholly held in lease by tacksmen. considering their extent. The Island The whole income amounted only to of Lewis, Lord Seaforth's property, with L.895 per annum; and so little prospect the exception of some hill-pasture let to had he of augmenting his rent-roll, that shepherds, is mostly occupied by small he resolved on a sale of the whole pro- tenants. The system of crofting having perty at a very moderate price.
been already adopted with success on On farther consideration, it occurred, small tenant farms, is likely to be pur:hat his estate might be of greater va- sued in these districts, until each ten. lue than he was, at first, inclined to be. ant shall have a separate division to lieve. He saw a numerous body of himself.
Strictures p. 44• tacksmen, who occupied only small shares of their farms, living in afo fluence and splendour, and amassing author of Remarks, p. 134-7. This
A similar account is given by the considerable wealth, on the labours of the subtenants and coitars. It occurred practice, however, seems hitherto to to him, that by letting the farms to the have been confined to the islands, and subtenants and cottars themselves, he some of the most uncultivated parts might relieve his people from many of the Highlands ; and we do not vexatious burdens, and pocket the pro- see any likelihood of a complete pro. fits, formerly intercepted by the tacks. vision being made by it for the whole
This resolution was no sooner formed than executed. He let all his population. The author of Remarks, arable farms to small tenants, at speci. in describing the conversion of a fied money rents, and abolished all kinds large estate into pasture, only asof services or duties.
serts that, out of humanity, some of The first year he received about one the former inhabitants were accomhundred and eighty new tenants upon modated with pieces of ground.
In his list, and raised the rent to L.3500. fact, though the practice may pero The next year, some new openings occurring, he received about fifty addition haps be suited to the present state of al tenants, some of them from other certain parts of the Highlands, it estates, and was thereby enabled to raise does not seem very favourable to the the rent to upwards of L.4000 per annum. most improved and profitable system A considerable part of his estate is yet of agriculture. under lease; and it is likely, as the lea
The fact, that none of these crof. ses expire, that the remainder is desti.
ters have been prevailed upon to ned to undergo a similar change, and that his income will be very much in
emigrate, clearly confutes the sup: creased by the change.
position of the Highlanders having On Clanranald's estate of Uist and any natural disposition to go abroad, Benbecula, a similar change has been when they can be comfortably aclately effected; and most of the lands
commodated at home. are held by small tenants directly from Much stress is laid upon the innthe proprietor. These pay a specified money-rent, and are subjected to no
provenient of the fisheries ; yet, even services, or burdens of any description,
by their own statements, it appears except the making of kelp; for which to us that the improvement of these they receive a high rate per ton. This can only be gradual. The following