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Old and New Edinburgh Vol. VI


361 New Haileal LORI) HAILES. made condemnation seem just as the doom of Providence to the criminals themselves, and raised a salutary horror of crime in the breasts of the audience. Conscious of the dignity and importance of the high office he held, he never departed from the decorum that becomes that reverend character, which, indeed, it cost him no effort to ,support, because he acted from principle and sentiment, both public and private. Affectionate to his family and relations, simple and mild in his manners, pure and conscientious in his morals, enlightened and entertaining in his conversation, he left society only to regret that, devoted as he was to more important employments, he had so little time to spare for intercourse with them.? (?Sermon on Lord Hailes?s Death,? by Rev. Dr. Carlyle. Edin. 1792.) An anecdote of him when at the bar is noted as being illustrative of his goodness of heart. When he held the office of Advocate-Depute, he had gone to Stirling in his official capacity. On the first day of the court he seemed in no haste to urge on proceedings, and was asked by a brother advocate why there was no trial this forenoon ? ?? There are,? said he, ? several unhappy creatures to be tried for their lives, and therefore it is but proper and just that they should have a little time to confer with their men of law.? ?That is of very little consequence,? said the ather. ? Last year, when I was here on the circuit, Lord Kames appointed me counsel for a man accused of a capital offence, and though I had very little time to prepare, I made a very fair speech.? ?? And was your client acquitted ? ? ?? No ; he was most unjustly condemned.? (? That, sir,? said the advocate-depute, (? is certainly no good argument for hurrying on trials.? When Sibbald started the Rdinbargh Magazine, in 1783, Lord Hailes became a frequent contributor to its pages. Lords Hailes, Eskgrove, Stonefield, and Swinton, were the judges of justiciary before whom Deacon Brodie and his compatriot were tried, and by whom they were sentenced to death in 1788. He died in the house of New Hailes, in his sixty-sixth year, on the 29th of November, 1792, leaving behind him a high reputation in literary and legal society. He had been appointed a judge, in succession to Lord Nisbet, in r766, and a commissioner of justiciary in 1777, in place of Lord Coalston, whose daughter, Anne, was his first wife. His grandfather was fifth brother of the Earl of Stair, and was Lord Advocate in the reign of George I., and his father had been Auditor of the Exchequer for life. His second wife was Helen Fergusson, a daughter of Lord Kilkerran, who suMved him eighteen years, and died in the house of New Hailes on the 10th November, 1810. It was long the residence of his daughter, and after her death became the property of her heir and relative, Sir C. Dalrymple Fergusson, Bart., of Kilkerran. Having no male issue, Lord Hailes?s baronetcy (which is now extinct) descended to his nephew, eldest son of his brother John, who held the office of Lord Provost of Edinburgh in 1770 and 1771. Our task-to us a labour of love-is ended. It has been our earnest effort to trace out and faithfully describe how ? the Queen of the North,? the royal metropolis of Scotland, from the Dunedin or rude hill-fort of the Celts, with its thatched huts amid the lonely forest of Drumsheugh, has, in the progress. of time, expanded into the vast and magnificent city we find it now, with its schools of learning, its academies of art, its noble churches and marts of industry, and its many glorious institutions of charity and benevolence ;-the city that Burns hailed in song, as ?Edina, Scotiq?s darling seat,? the centre of memories which make it dear to all Scotsmen, wherever their fate or their fortune may lead them. For the stately and beautiful Edinburgh, which now spreads nearly from the base of the Braid Hills to the broad estuary of the Forth, is unquestionably the daughter of the old fortress on the lofty rock, as the arms in her shield-the triple castle-serve to remind us. We have attempted to depict a prehistoric Edinburgh, before coming to the ten centuries of veritable histov, when a Christian church rose on the ridge or Edin of the Celts, to replace the heathen rites that were celebrated on Arthur?s Seat and other hills ; and no royal city in Europe can boast ten centuries of such stirring, warlike, and glorious annals-in which, however, the sad or sorrowful is strangely commingled-as were transacted in the living drama of many ages, the actors in which it has been our endeavour to portray. We have sought to recall not only the years that have passed away, but also the successive generations of dwellers in the old walled city of the middle ages, and their quaint lives and habits, with the change of these as time rolled on. The history of Edinburgh is, in many respects, a history of Scotland from the time it became the residence of her kings, but one in which the peculiar domestic annals of the people are ne
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368 OLD AND NEW EDINBURGH. cessarily woven up with the warlike, even from the days when our forefathers, with their good swords and true hearts, were enabled to defend their homes and hills against all the might of England, aided, ? as albeit the latter often was, by Ireland, Wales, and all the chivalry of Normandy and Aquitaine ; and to hand down to future times the untarnished crown of a regal race as an emblem of what Scotland was, ere she peacefully quartered her royal arms and insignia with those of her adversary, with whom she shared her kings, and as an emblem of what she is still, with her own Church, laws, and constitution, free and unfettered. The Old city-with its ?stirring memories of a thousand years ?-has records which are, in tenor, widely apart from those of the New; yet, in the former, we may still see the massive, picturesque, quaint and time-worn abodes of those who bore their part in the startling events of the past-fierce combats, numerous raids, cruelties and crimes that tarnish the?histonc page j while in the New city, with its stately streets, its squares and terraces, the annals are all recent,?and refer to the arts of Peace alone-to a literary and intellectual supremacy hitherto unsurpassed. Yet, amid the thousands of its busy population, life is leisurely there ; but, as has been well said, ?it is not the leisure of a village arising from the deficiency of ideas and motives-it is the leisure of a city reposing grandly on tradition and history, which has done its work, and does not require to weave its own clothing, to dig its own coals, or smelt its own iron. And then in Edinburgh, above all British cities, you are released from the vulgarising dominion of the hour.? For, as has been abundantly shown throughout this work, there every step is historical, and the past and present are ever face to face. The dark shadow cast by the Union has long since passed away; but we cannot forget that Edinburgh, like Scotland generally, was for generations- neglected by Government, and her progress obstructed by lame legislation ; that it is no longer the chief place where landholders dwell, or the revenue of a kingdom is disbursed ; and that it is owing alone to the indomitable energy, the glorious spirit of self-reliance, and the patriotism of her people, that we find the Edinburgh of to-day what sheis, in intellect and beauty, second to no city in the world.
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