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Kay's Originals Vol. 2


82 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES. eclipse of the sun, when a countryman accosted him, requesting to be informed whether the eclipse would take place that day. “No,” said the Secretary, probably recollecting the reply of Dean Swift, “it has been put off till to-morrow ! ” The clown went away apparently perfectly satisfied with the information. The following anecdote is told of the worthy Secretary. One night he was seated solus by his own parlour fire, head of the West Bow. A bottle of genuine Edinburgh ale-a beverage in which he greatly delighted-stood on the hearth, to take the “ chill air off it,” while, with a foot extended on each side of the cheering grate, and his head inclining gently forward, he was dosing away the time till supper should be prepared. From this state of pleasing half-unconsciousness, he was suddenly roused by a smart hit on the proboscis, the cork having sprung with great force from the overheated bottle. The drowsy Secretary, probably dreaming of another rencontre with the Grand Clerk, demanded in a rage to know the cause of quarrel, and involuntarily applying his foot, dashed the luckless bottle in a hundred pieces ! As an assistant clerk in the Court of Session he was succeeded first by his son, and afterwards by his grandson Mr. Hector Mason. Mr. Mason died on the 26th September 1795. No. CC. REV. JAMES BAINE, A.M. FIRST MINISTER OF THE RELIEF CONGREGATION, SOUTH COLLEGE STKEET. THE REV. JAMESB AINE,w hose name holds a distinguished place in the annals of the Presbytery of Relief, was the son of the minister of Bonhill, in Dumbartonshire, where he was born in 17 10. His education was begun at the parish school, and having been completed at the University of Glasgow, he became a licentiate of the Church of Scotland. On account of the respectability of his father, and his own promising talents, he was presented by the Duke of Montrose to the Church of Killearn, the parish adjoining that in which his father had long been minister, In this sequestered and tranquil scene he spent many years ; and in after life, he has been often heard to say they were the happiest he had ever experienced. He was here married to Miss Potter, daughter of Dr. Michael Potter, Professor of Divinity in the University of Glasgow, by whom he had a large family.’ His son, the Rev. James Baine, in early life became a licensed preacher in the Established Church, but afterwards received Episcopal ordination, and was appointed to a chaplaincy in one of our distant colonies. He latterly returned to his native country, and died at Alloa. Another aon became a captain in the army, served abroad during the American and Continental wars, and was aftemards, we believe, proprietor of an estate in Stirlingshire.
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