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Kay's Originals Vol. 1


294 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES. length, when an ominous vacuum began to render less distinct the hitherto bright and vivid reminiscences of an Italian sky, under which they had been all night, in imagination, enjoying themselves-Stabilini staggered towards the window, through the shutters of which he fancied he beheld a stream of light, and throwing them open, was confounded to witness the full blaze of an autumnal morning. '' Corri ! Corri ! " exclaimed the astonished Stabilini to his drowsy countryman-" Be-gar, it's to-morrow ! " Stabilini was a joyous creature.' He was a great favourite of Skene of Skene-a gentleman of ability and genius, and who loved of all things to spend the night over his glass with his friends. Stabilini-or Stab, as he was famiIiarly called-was his frequent companion, and used to spend weeks with him in the country, where he was in the habit of acting as butler, or rather as factotum of the establishment. While there it was no uncommon thing for to-morrow to dawn before the Bacchanalian orgies of the night had been concluded. Stabilini died at Edinburgh in July 1815, and was buried in the West Churchyard, where a stone fixed in the wall of the south entrance bears the following inscription- " Memoria: Hieronymi Stabilini, Amici Mcerentes Posuerunt : Roma Natus, Edina obiit Mens. Jul. MDCCCXV&., tat. LIV." The third figure in the Print represents a personage of "sterner stuff" than either of the two foregoing, being an excellent likeness of the somewhat notorious CAPTAIN M'KENZIE of Red Castle. The small estate bearing this name is situated in the neighbourhood of Montrose. The old castle, now in ruins, on the banks of the Lunan, is supposed to have been built by William the Lion. This gentleman was an officer in Seaforth's Regiment of Highlanders, at the time of their revolt in 1778. The regiment had for some time been quartered in the Castle of Edinburgh ; but, contrary to expectation, they were at length ordered to embark for Guernsey. Previous to this, a difference existed between the officers and men-the latter declaring that neither their bounty nor the arrears of their pay had been fully paid up, and that they had otherwise been ill used. On the day appointed for embarkation (Tuesday, the 22d September) the regiment marched for Leith ; but farther than the Links the soldiers refused to move a single step. A scene of great confusion ensued: the officers endeavoured to soothe the men by promising to rectify every abuse. About five hundred were prevailed on to embark, but as many more were deaf to all entreaty ; and, being in possession of powder and ball, any attempt to force them would have proved both ineffectual and dangerous. The mutineers then moved back to Arthur Seat, where they took up a position, and in which they continued encamped more than ten days. "hey were supplied plentifully with The tricks he played off upon the natives with his favourite spaniel, at private parties, and in particular at the public dinner in Mid-Calder, will yet be remembered by many.
Volume 8 Page 413
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