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It is not here, it is not heie,
That ye shall build the church of Deer;
But on Taptiilery,
Where many a corpse shall lie.
The site of the edifice was accordingly transferred to Taptillery, an eminence at some distance from the place where the building had been commenced.—Macfarlane's MSS. I mention these popular fables, because the introduction of the River and Mountain Spirits may not, at first sight, seem to accord with the general tone of the romance, and the superstitions of the country where the scene is laid.
Note XIII. A fancied moss-trooper, &c.—P. 29. This was the usual appellation of the marauders upon the Borders; a profession diligently pursued by the inhabitants on both sides, and by none more actively and successfully than by Buccleuch's clan. Long after the union of the crowns, the moss-troopers, although sunk in reputation, and no longer enjoying the pretext of national hostility, continued to pursue their calling.
Fuller includes, among the wonders of Cumberland, " The Moss-troopers: so strange is the condition of their living, if considered in their Original, Increase, Height, Decay, and Ruine.
1." Original. I conceive them the same called Borderers in Mr Cambden; and characterised by him to be, a mild and warlike people. They are called Moss-troopers, because dwelling in the mosses, and riding in troops together. They dwell in the bounds, or meeting, of the two kingdoms, but obey the laws of neither. They come to church as seldom as the 29th of February comes into the kalendar.
2. " Increase. When England and Scotland were united in Great Britain, they that formerly lived by hostile incursions, betook themselves to the robbing of their neighbours. Their sons are free of the trade by their father's copy. They are like to Job, not in piety and patience, but in sudden plenty and poverty; sometimes having flocks and herds in the morning, none at night, and perchance many again next day. They may give for their mottoe, .vivitur ex rapto, stealing from their honest neighbours what they sometimes require. They are a nest of hornets: strike one, and stir all of them about your ears. Indeed, if they promise safely to conduct a traveller, they will perform it with the fidelity of a Turkish janizary; otherwise, woe be to him that falleth into their quarters!
3. " Height. Amounting, forty years since, to some thousands. These compelled the vicinage to purchase their security, by paying a constant rent to them. When in their greatest height, they had two great enemies—the Laws of the Land, and the Lord William Howard of Naworth. He sent many of them to Carlisle, to that place where the officer doth always his work by day-light. Yet these Moss-troopers, if possibly they could procure the pardon for a condemned person of their company, would advance great sums out of their common stock, who, in such a case, cast in their lots amongst themselves, and all have one purse.
4. " Decay. Caused by the wisdom, valour, and diligence, of the Right Honourable Charles Lord Howard, Earl of Carlisle, who routed these English Tories with his regiment. His severity unto them will not only be excused, but commended, by the judicious, who consider how our great lawyer doth describe such persons, who are solemnly outlawed. Bracton, lib. 8. trac. 2. cap. 11.—' Ex tunc gerunt caput lupinum, ita quod sine judiciali inquisitione rite pereant, et secum suum judicium portent; et merito sine lege pereunt, qui secundum legem vivere recusarunt.'—' Thenceforward, (after that they are outlawed) they wear a wolf's head, so that they lawfully may be destroyed, without any judicial inquisition, as who carry their own condemnation about them, and deservedly die without law, because they refused to live according to law.'
5. " Ruine. Such was the success of this worthy lord's severity, that he made a thorough reformation among them ; and the ringleaders being destroyed, the rest are reduced to legall obedience, and so, I trust, will continue."—Fuller's Worthies of England, p. 216.
The last public mention of moss-troopers occurs during the civil wars of the 17th century, when many ordinances of parliament were directed against them.
Note XIV. How the brave boy, in future tear, Should tame the Unicorn's pride, Exalt the Crescent and the Star.—P. 29. The arms of the Kerrs of Cessford were, Vert on a cheveron, betwixt three unicorns' heads erased argent, three mullets sable; crest, an unicorn's head erased proper. The Scotts of Buccleuch bore, Or on a bend azure; a star of six points betwixt two crescents of the first.
Note XV. William of Deloraine.—P. 30. The lands of Deloraine are joined to those of Buccleuch in Ettricke Forest. They were immemorially possessed by the Buccleuch family, under the strong title of occupancy, although no charter was obtained from the crown until 1545.— Like other possessions, the lands of Deloraine were occasionally granted by them to vassals, or kinsmen, for Border-service. Satchells mentions, among the twenty-four gentlemen pensioners of the family, "William Scott, commonly called Cut-at-the-Black, who had the lands of Nether Deloraine for his service." And again," This William of Deloraine, commonly called Cut-at-the-Black, was a brother of the ancient house of Haining, which house of Haining is descended from the ancient house of Hassendean." The lands of Deloraine now give an earl's title to the descendant of Henry, the second surviving son of the Duchess of Buccleuch and Monmouth. I have endeavoured to give William of Deloraine the attributes which characterised the Borderers of his day; for which I can only plead Froissart's apology, that, " it behoveth, in a lynage, some to be folyshe and outrageous, to maynteyne and sustayne the peasable." As a contrast to my Marchman, I beg leave to transcribe, from the same author, the speech of Amergot Marcell, a captain of the Adventurous Companions, a robber, and a pillager of the country of Auvergne, who had been bribed to sell his strong-holds, and to assume a more honourable military life under the banners of the Earl of Armagnac. But" when he remembered alle this, he was sorrowful ; his tresour he thought he wolde not mynysshe; he was wonte dayly to serche for newe pyllages, wherbye encresed his profyte, and then he sawe that alle was closed fro' hym. Then he sayde and imagyned, that to pyll and to robbe (all thynge considered) was a good lyfe, and so repented hym of his good doing. On a tyme, he said to his old companyons, 'Sirs, there is no sporte nor glory in this worlde amonge men of warre, but to use suche lyfe as we have done in tyme past. What a joy was it to us when we rode forth at adventure, and somtyme found by the way a riche priour or merchaunt, or a route of mulettes of MountpeUyer, of Narbonne, of Lymens, of Fongans, of Besyers, of Tholous, or of Carcassone, laden with cloth of Brussels, or peltre ware comynge fro the fayres, or laden with spycery fro Bruges, fro Damas, or fro Alysaundre: whatsoever we met, all was ours, or els ransoumed at