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No. LXIX.)

“Takes note of what is done-
By note, to give and to receive."-SHAKESPEARE.


NEW FACTS RESPECTING ROBINSON CRUSOE being drunk in a mercat at Leven ;' other instances The original of De Foe's Robinson Crusoe, it is now

might be adduced from the same unerring record of the generally admitted was Alexander Selkirk or Selcbraig, attempts to reform their ill doing. a native of the parish of Largo, in Fifeshire. Several

Alexander Selkirk's occupation is not stated, probably families of the same name resided at the time in the

he followed his father's calling, that of a tanner and same place, and had long been settled in the fishing

shoemaker; his reprehensible conduct however in 1695, village of Nether Largo, romantically situated on the

| placed him under the ban of the Kirk Session, to avoid margin of the German Ocean. Here, about a mile dis

the oppressive tyranny of which, it is recorded, he filed tant from the parish kirk, was the spot of Alexander

| to sea, and hence commenced a career that at a later Selkirk's birth, in or about 1676 ; and although the period earned him a never-dying name in the annals of year has not been certified by any entry in the parochial | the world. The Sessional registers notice registry of Baptisms, nor in any known record, still the August 25. The qulk day, Alexander Selchraig, son to house in which he was born is well authenticated, and John Selchraig elder, in Neither Largo, was delated for his remains in much the same primitive condition in its undecent carriage in the church. Ordered to be cited before form as when built. In the annexed view, it is engraved

the Session. for the first time

August 27. The qulk day, Alexander Selchraig called, but did not compear being gone away to the sea. This business is continued till his return.

When he returned does not appear, but he was at home in 1701, and took a prominent part in some family squabbles, which occasioned the following recorded proceedings in the Sessional register of that year.

Nov. 18. John Guthrie delated John Selcraige elder, and his wife Euphan Mckie, and Alexander Selcraig, Andrew Selcraige, for disagreement together; and also John Selcraige and his wife Margaret Beil. (All ordered to appear on 25th inst.)

Nov. 25. Euphan Mckic confessed that she desired to be separate from her husband, but she said she was of a troubled spirit, and that she thought her words should not be laid hold one; she said she is now in better termes with her husband.

John Selcraige elder being enquired what was the occaWhether that branch of the Selkirks to which Alex-

sion of the tumult in his house, said, he knew not, but that ander was more immediately related inherited their

Andrew Selcraige having brought in a canefull of salt watter

of which his brother Alexander did through mistake take a quarrelsome habits from their father or their mother,

drink, and he laughing at him for it, his brother Alexander the latter of whom it appears was a person of an un

came andbeat him; upon which he rūne out of the house and steady and discontented nature, or as quaintly admitted

called his brother John. John Selcraig elder being again words of a troubled spirit, it would be idle questioned what made him to sit one the floor with his back to attempt to determine; yet certain it is, that the scenes at the door? he said, it was to keep doun his sone Alexof family strife, which occurred within the house above ander who was seeking to go up to get his pistole, and being represented, were the immediate cause of his leaving that enquired, what he was to do with it? he said, he could not teli. home, and assuming a position in life, which by the Alexander Selcraige called, compeared not, because he graphic pen of De Foe has eternised him as a hero of was at Coupar: he is to be cited pro secundo against the

next Session. " imperishable notoriety. The Selkirk family appear to have been naturally tur

John Selcrage younger being questioned concerning the

tumult in his father's house on Nov. 7, declared that he being bulent, and from the Sessional records, it is clear, that

called by his brother Andrew came in to it, and when he Alexander's elder brother John, in 1685, a married man

entered the house, his mother went out, and he seeing his with a family, also at tiines afforded the Kirk Session oc

father sitting one the floor with his back at the door was casion to anathematise his dissolute conduct. During the

much troubled and offered to help him up, and to bring him summer of 1693, he was rebuked' for being drunk, and to the fire, at which time he did see his brother Alexanstriking some of his neighbours; again, in the autumn der, in the other end of the house, casting off his coate, and of the same year, he, with a namesake, did penance ‘for coming towards him; whereupon his father did get betwixt




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them, but he knew not what he did otherwayes, his head of the notices recorded respecting Selkirk in the parish being borne down by his brother Alexander, but afterwards registers, rebound them handsomely at his own cost; the being liberated by his wife, did make his escape.

upper side of each volume being inscribed-Rebound Margaret Bell, [wife of John S.,] deponed that Andrew for preservation at the expense of Archibald Constable, Selcraige came running for her husband John, and desiring

ring of Balneil, 1820. him to go to his father's house; which he doing, the said Margaret did follow her husband, and coming into the house,

The drinking cup formed of a small cocoa-nut shell; she found Alexander Selcraige gripping both his father and

| (the simple ornament shewn in the woodcut — her husband, and she labouring to louse Alexander's hands from her husband's bead and breast, her husband fled out of doors, and she followed him, and called back again-You fals loon will you murder your father and my husband both? Whereupon he followed her to the door, but whether he beat her or not, she was in so great confusion, she cannot distinctly tell, but ever since she hath u sore pain in her head.

Nov. 29. Alexander Selcraige, scandalous for contention and disagreeing with his brothers compeared and confest that he having taken a drink of salt watter out of the cane, his younger brother Andrew laughing at him for it, he did beat him twice with a stafe. He confest also that he had spoken very ill words concerning his brothers, and particularly be challinged his elder brother John to a combate as he called it, of dry neiffells; he said then he would not care to do it even now, which afterwards he did refuse and regrate; moreover, he said several other things, whereupon the Ses- I having been the work of Alexander Selkirk.)—is three sion appointed him to compear before the pulpit against to-morrow, and to be rebuked in face of the congregation

inchies and a quarter deep, by two and a half inches for his scandalous carriage.

diameter. Mrs. Gillies assured the writer, it hall Nov. 30. Alexander Selcraige according to the Session's

formerly a silver foot and stem, but that her father had appointment compeared before the pulpit and made acknow

disposed of it. Wanting that appendage, Sir Walter ledgement of his sin in disagreeing with his brothers, and

and Constable took it to Edinburgh, where the present was rebuked in face of the congregation for it: he promised foot and stem of rosewood nearly three inches high, was amendment in the strenth of the Lord, and so was dismissed. added, making the whole about six inches in height. The next that is with certainty known of Alexander

They also added the silver band or fillet, that encircles Selkirk, is the fact, that while sailing master of the ship

the outside of the cup, bearing this inscription — The Cinque Ports, in 1704, he quarrelled with the captain

Cup of Alex. Selkirk, whilst in Juan Fernandez, 1704-9. of that vessel, and by way of punishment was put on

| The cloathes-chest, designated by the family in Mrs. shore on the uninhabited island of Juan Fernandez in Gillies's youth, 'the cedar kist,' from the top being made the Pacific Ocean, with a chest containing cloathes, a of cecar wood, is two feet deep, eighteen inches wide, hatchet, and a firelock, with some powder and shot, and and three feet long. At one end is a small drawer or that there he contrived to live till he was picked up locker,' with a rudely ornamented lid. The asp of the by Captain Woodes Rogers, in 1709, and brought to

in 1909. and brought to lock, as shewn by the woodcutEngland.

The firelock, his cloathes, chest, and drinking cup, used on the island, were brought home by him to his native village; and with the exception of the firelock, now at Lathallan House, near Largo; the rest remain in the house in which he was born. The house, nominally at least, the property of Mrs. Gillies, a poor widow, is tenanted by her; she is the daughter of John Selkirk, grand-nephew of Alexander Selkirk, is 78 years of age, and has been the mother of a large family, all was a coarse strong sort of fastening, now useless. Upon of whom have preceded her to their last home.

the top of the slightly rounded lid, are the letters A. S., Widow Gillies is the last survivor of the family to and the figures 31, being the number of the chest on which Selkirk belonged, and her circumstances are such, board Capt. Woodes Rogers' ship at the time he was that she is dependant on the benevolence of those who visit homeward bound; there are also scratched with sonte her interesting cottage, and the relics of her far-famed sharp instrument, four angular marks equi-distant; all predecessor : visitors it must be admitted are not a few, the contents of the chest as may be premised are fewsome of them are and have been persons of high literary the drinking cup, a copy of De Foe's Novel of Robinson distinction : among them not the least memorable was the Crusoe, and the rusted key, long since past use, are all master spirit of the North, Sir Walter Scott, and his it contains. publisher Constable, the latter of whom, in consequence Brechin.

A. J.



PORSON'S LATIN CHARADE. Columbus in his first voyage of discovery, on his! The very elegant charade attributed to Professor returning entered the port of Nipe, in Cuba, Oct. 28. Porson, Current Notes, p. 68, is incorrectly printed. I 1492, and on the following day, believing the coast to be send you the true version, and the subjoined translation that of Asia, left it in hopes of finding the city, which

is much at your service, if you should think it worthy induced by the Indians he believed lay to the westward. of insertion in your very amusing and instructive CurOn Nov. 2 he deputed messengers to confer with the rent Notes. great king, who was supposed to govern this vast conti

TO MISS LAURA CROW. nent, but on the fourth day of their absence, they

Te primum incauto nimium propiusque tuenti returned; they had found no Eastern magnificence, but

Laura mihi subito surripuisse queror; simply a town about twelve leagues distant. These

Nec tamen hoc furtum tibi condonare recusem, messengers, in the course of their journey, observed for

Si pretium tali solvere merce velis; the first time the application of Tobacco to smoking.

Sed quo plus candoris habent tua colla secundo, This was described as being in the form of a roll of a

Hoc tibi plus primum frigoris intus habet; large quantity of the leaf, one end of which was on fire,

Jamque sinistra cava cantavit ab ilice totum the smoke being inhaled by the mouth from the other,

Omina, et audaces spes vetat esse ratas. a process which occasioned the Spaniards much surprise. Thus, observes Navarrete, was the first lesson given to

TRANSLATION. Europeans, of this extraordinary habit, that has become My first, while too fondly I gaze, universal; and hence the origin of the so-much prized To my sorrow, O Laura! you stole; and so far celebrated Havanas. The natives on being And yet I the theft could e'en praise, questioned why they adopted the practice, replied as well If you gave me yourself, as a whole ; as they could be understood, that it prevented them But your breast, than my second more white, from feeling fatigue. Las Casas, the Spanish historian, My first, still more chilling, conceals; is the first to exclaim against the custom, being unable Whilst my whole, from yon oak's airy height, on his part to discover the benefit that was to be On the left, my destruction reveals. derived from it; but Navarrete inadvertently supplies Newport, Essex.

WILLIAM HILDYARD. a satisfactory answer, one that applies to other states, besides that of Spain, in simply observing—Who would have supposed, that this new and curious vice could have.

The following is a free rendering of Porson's charade, become so general, as to be one of the most profitable in Current Notes, p. 68: – sources of revenue to the State? This after all ap

TO MISS LAURA CROW. pears to be the most beneficial result of the use of the

Too rashly lifting thy protecting veil, weed in all the various ways in which it is applied.

My stolen first, dear Laura, I bewail : Capt. Becher, in his recently published admirable work,

And yet 'twere venial theft, my lips would say, the Landfall of Columbus, p. 356, observes—Here, as

Wouldst thou in kindred ware the price repay; stated by Las Casas, is the origin of smoking tobacco, a

But in thy first, my second's coldness dwells, practice which however extensive it may be in other

The more its whiteness thy fair neck excels; countries, has become so general in this, that to the

And hark! my whole perch'd on the hollow oak, discredit of parents, it is even followed by children! the

Chides my bold wishes with ill omen'd croak. eternal cigar is seen in the mouth of old and young,

CORNIX. even in that of the ragged urchin, who swaggers along not only astonishing those who see him at his early hardihood, but leaving them to speculate how he came by

CHRONOGRAMS.-The Epistle Dedicatorie to Sir Miles it, considering the price which must have been paid for it.

Sandys' Prudence, the first of the Foure Cardinall Profitable indeed it is to the State, but indulged in to

Virtues, 1634, duod., ends thus the cost of the pocket, the health, and the personal

PIVs Ies Vs comfort of society, as the following statement from an

Henricvm SanDys official source of the amount of duty derived from

ab hostIbV8 Tobacco in the United Kingdom, for the last three years

tVeat Vr. will substantiate :


In Albury church, Surrey, is the following similarly 1853

disposed memorial: 4,751,7761.

Res Vrgent eXIsto pVLVere qIbI sepVLtI DorMIVnt. 1855 4,704,6631.

My body pawn'd to death doth here remain, These are tolerably good round sums, contributing to

As surety for the Soul's return again. the benefit of the State, if not of its subjects; and as The first embodies the date 1634; the second, 1640. may be added—wholly blown off in a whiffl


M. D.

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I on an island of the Lucayos, called by the natives GuanaCaptain Becher's recently published volume entitled

hani, now known as Watling Island, the Garde: of the -The Landfall of Columbus on his first voyage to

Bahamas ;' was then taken possession of in the name of America, is one of those works which must find its way

Ferdinand and Isabella, and namned by him in accordance into all libraries, whether public or private, inasmuch

with the dominant religious notions of the time, San as based on fact and records of an indisputable character,

Salvador. *

Magellan, the first of the early navigators who shewed the circumstances relative to the four voyages of this

the way into the Pacific Ocean has been more fortunate celebrated man, are here fully developed, and the spot on which Columbus first set foot in the New World, is

than Columbus, both with the historian and the poet.

Even his ship, the Victory, which never returned to here satisfactorily defined and established. Notwithstanding the hitherto unsuccessful efforts of the most

Europe, but was lost among the Molucca Islands, has distinguished writers and Nautical Commanders or His

been pictorially represented, and her success celetorians to determine or solve a question that has been

brated in song; while to realise an illustration of the deemed of the highest importance, and embarrassed by

ships of Columbus has been the difficult task of the difficulties in the solution of no ordinary complicity, as

antiquary, causing misconceptions and errors among neither Watling Island, the Guanahani of Columbus,

men and writers of the clearest and most resplendent nor the Crooked Island Group, his · Fragrant Isles,

intellects. The arguments of Washington Irving in have been surveyed on the liberal scale of Long Island,

favour of Cat Island; and those of Baron Humboldt for off the south-west end of which he anchored, and after

Turk's Island, are by Captain Becher most successfully naming it, simply adds a passing notice in two or three

analysed, the several courses are traced on an accompany

ing map, and the vexatious point in dispute may now be words. The circumstances in the eventful career of Columbus,

considered as definitively settled. whose name can never be forgotten in the annals of the

By order dated Barcelona, May 20, 1493, Ferdinand world, though only the eldest son of a humble carder,

and Isabella conferred on Columbus the dignity of bearborn at Genoa in 1435, are subjects of the most minute

ing the armorial insignia here represented — enquiry, and his perseverance, undaunted amidst the greatest perplexities, is held forth for the admiration of all men, and proving Columbus to have been under all positions in himself a person of innate majesty of capacity, notwithstanding the frequent rejections of his proposals for discoveries in the West, his being deceived, taunted and treated as a fanatic, by governments whose antecedents and power ought to have rendered them more susceptible of appreciation. In 1485, we learn that Columbus purposed to proffer his services to England : Henry the Seventh was then on the throne, a monarch whose wisdom and prowess Columbus had heard highly praised, so much so indeed, as to induce

Divested of its official phraseology, that patent would him to urge the setting forth of his brother Bartholomew

read thusto obtain if possible the patronage of the king; in the Don Fernando and Doña Isabel, etc., In acknowledgment meantime however having satisfied his filial piety by and reward to you Christóbal Colon, our Admiral of the seeing his aged father was comfortably provided for, he

Islands and Mainland discovered by our command, and to quitted Genoa for Spain, where subsequently he found

be discovered in the Indies in the Ocean Sea ; and in rea more favourable reception than had been accorded to

membrance of the great and loyal services which you have him by the different governments which he had ad

performed for us, especially in exposing your person as you

have to much risk and labour in discovering the said Islands, dressed, and England missed the opportunity of adding

and to honour and promote you and your descendants and one more to the many glories which already enrich her

lineage in perpetuity hereafter, we have thought proper, naval renown.

and it is our desire, and we give you power and authority The notes of the Journal of Columbus in his first voy to bear on your shield of arms, besides those of your own age across the Atlantic Ocean in 1492, are here digested family, a Castle and Lion over them, which we give you in the more modern form of the Journals kept on board for arms, that is to say: Government ships, by which at a glance are shewn the | In the dexter quarter, the Castle or on a field rert. In courses and distances run by him, and elicit the fact that on Thursday, Oct. 11, land was first seen by a sea- |

• Watling Island, celebrated as it is for being the real man named Rodriga de Triana, on board the Pinta. San Salvador of Columbus, obtained its later designation which being a faster vessel was ahead of the Admiral's from a Captain George Watling, an old buccaneer or freeship, the Santa Maria. At two in the morning of

booter; the latter a word now in use among our friends in Friday, land was distinctly seen by the ships at about Filibustier. that being the nearest pronunciation of the

the United States, with a Spanish parentage, and called two leagues distance, and at day-break Columbus landed Spaniards to Freebooter, and is so defined in the dictionaries.

the sinister quarter, a Lion purpura, rampant, on a field for his services, and died May 26, 1506, aged 71. His argent. In the dexter base quarter, some Islands or in remains were deposited in the convent of San Francisco Waves of the sea; and in the sinister base quarter, the arms at Valladolid. In 1513, they were transferred to the which you are accustomed to bear; which abovesaid arms shall be acknowledged as yours and those of your descen

monastery of Cartujos de las Cuevas, in Seville, where

were also deposited those of his son Don Diego, who dants in perpetuity hereafter.

died Feb. 23, 1526. In 1536, the remains of Columbus The biography of Columbus has been most fully dis- and his son Diego, were delivered for transfer to the cussed, and many important facts established. One, not city of Santo Domingo, in the island of Española, where the least interesting is the definition of the initials which they were interred by the altar, in the cathedral. In are found attached to Columbus's signature. Isabella 1795, that island having been ceded to France, their having assured him that his desire to be the explorer ashes were again disturbed, and transferred to Cuba, of regions then unknown should be promoted—that the their last resting place being on the right side of the voyage should be undertaken under her auspices; that altar, of the cathedral of the city of Havana. as Admiral he should be in the service of the crown, and that his son would also be provided for in his absence,

THE BARRIECO, OR BARAECO. appears to have created such emotions, as moved him

The boar-shaped Estian divinity Barrieco, or Baraeco, even to tears. The certainty of the means of the achieving the fondest, most ardent wishes of his life,

referred to in Current Notes, p. 72, by A. M., as having

been worshipped on the banks of the Duero and its and the protection awarded to his family caused the expression of those sentiments, which he maintained ever

tributaries, at a very early period, is of Indian origin.

i Varaha, or the Boar, was one of the ten avatars or after, bequeathing them as sacred heir-looms to his successors. Subdued by so much unexpected kindness

descents of Vishnu, the second person of the Hindu

Trinity, in his capacity of preserver. He took the form from the Queen, so soon as his feeling permitted him the utterance, he is said to have exclaimed-I shall

of a boar, the symbol of strength, to draw up and suphenceforth be the Servant of your Majesty! Adopting

port in his tusks the whole earth, which had been sunk these words of Columbus as a key to his cipher, which

beneath the ocean. One of the Calpas or renovations is thus disposed

of the universe is thence named Varaha. “Waters

(alone) there were; this world originally was water; in S. S. A.

it the lord of creation moved, having become air; he S.

saw this (earth); and uplifted it, assuming the form of a X. M. Xpo Ferens

boar; and then moulded that (earth), becoming ViswaEl Almirante.

carman, the artificer of the universe." Taittiriya

Yajarvéda, quoted in Asiatic Researches, vol. VIII., P. and assuming they are intended to imply Spanish words,

452. When the eight sactis or energies of the gods, – the three first lines would be read —

female divinities, matris, or mothers, exactly like their Servidor

male principles, “with the same form, the same decoraSus Altesas Sacras

tion, and the same vehicle,"--came to fight against the Jesus Maria Ysabel

demons, as related in the Devi Mahátmya, Asiatic and translated mean—The servant of their Sacred

Researches, vol. VIII., p. 83, the energy of Hari, Highnesses Jesus, Maria and Isabella. Thus in assum

Varahi, the granter of boons, “ assumed the unrivalled ing the above cipher, Columbus seems to have really form of the holy boar." sitting on a buffalo. This reexpressed what he purposed should remain in perpetuity doubtable goddess it seems to have been who was known in his family, that in gratitude for her protection he and

under the name of Frea or Fricco, “mother of the his heirs should be the servants of her Majesty. Navar

gods, to the tribes inhabiting the countries adjoining rete has printed all the letters of one size, but this is the Baltic. (Mallet. Introd. °à l'Histoire de Dannenot in conformity with the custom of Columbus, to which

marck, pp. 56, et seqq.) and the emblem of whose worthe A. here is of a larger character. The words—Xpo

ship, insigne superstitionis, was the image of a wild Ferens, are admitted to imply-bearing the Cross; so

boar. Eccardus, De Rebus Franciae Orientalis, tom. that the whole translated would stand thus in English

I. p. 409, quoted by Brotier, in his notes to Tacitus, The Servant

says many vestiges of this superstition still remain in of their Sacred Highnesses

Sweden. The country people, he observes, at that Jesus, Mary, and Isabella,

season of the year (February) when the festival of Frea Bearing the Cross,

was formerly held, bake loaves shaped like a wild boar, The Admiral.

which they put to various superstitious uses. I need Columbus, soon after his return from his fourth voy- scarcely add that Frea or Friga is identified by myage, enfeebled by age and borne down by infirmities, thologists with the Greek Aphrodité and the Roman the result of the hardships he had undergone, more Venus, and that one of the days of the week takes its particularly in his last voyage, and affected by the loss name from her. of his patroness, the Queen Isabella, directed his efforts The Sanscrit term varaha, a boar, is evidently the to the obtaining for his brother Bartholomew a reward | Latin verres, the Italian verro, the French verrat, the

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