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Still may her ships to distant regions run,
Beyond the rising or the setting sun,
Till Clyde's broad bosom can no longer greet
The rolling tide that wafts the passing fleet. (1)
Kelvin, a stream that slept inglorious long,
Shall rise to fame, and shine in future song.
Through Carron's channel, now with Kelvin joined,
The wondering barks a ready passage find:
The ships, on swelling billows wont to rise,
On solid mountains climb to scale the skies;
Old ocean sees the fleets forsake his floods,
Sail the firm land, the mountains and the woods;
And safely thus conveyed, they dread no more
Rough northern seas which round the Orkneys roar.
Not thus the wave of Forth was joined to Clyde,
When Rome's broad rampart stretched from tide to tide.
With bulwarks strong, with towers sublimely crowned,
While winding tubes conveyed each martial sound.
To guard the legions from their painted foes,
By vast unwearied toil the rampire rose;

When, fierce in arms, the Scot, by Carron's shore,
Resigned, for war, the chase and mountain boar;
As the chafed lion, on his homeward way,
Returns for vengeance, and forgets the prey.



By Camelon's towers, with Pictish splendour crowned,
And ancient grandeur, stretched the mighty mound;
Swept with broad trench o'er Falkirk's fatal plain,
Still red with gore of Scotian heroes slain;
Where dauntless Bute, with his brave Brandons, stood,
Till the wide plain was slippery with their blood;

(1) [This wish has been realized to an extent beyond his loftiest imaginings. The following statement of the receipts of the Custom-house of Glasgow will give some idea of the rapid strides made during the present century:

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Where gallant Graham, devoted, scorned to fly;
And Wallace saw his fairest laurels die. (1)

But Carron's bank a fairer fame may crave,
Than from a chieftain's death or hero's grave;
"Where sable artists match the ancient fame
"Of Lemnos, or of Etna's mightier name;
"Who bend the stubborn steel in smouldering fire,
"Rend it to rods, or wring to ductile wire:
"Enormous tubes, like roaring tempests, sound;
"Loud ring the anvils as the blows go round:
"Scarce Etna saw a more tremendous sight,
"Her red cells glowing with infernal light;




Where, drenched with sweat, with smoking sulphur dun, "Toiled her vast brood, who never saw the sun:

"Nor e'er were forged in Ætna's dreary caves, "Where the red lava rolls his burning waves,

"More awful weapons of destructive might,

"Than those dire tubes that thin the ranks of fight. " (') The Eastern wealth shall here with Western meet, And both the Indies load the bending fleet;

The English tar shall, frowning, turn his eye,
From fields of battle where his fathers lie;
Dread Bannockburn, to Scots the dearest boast,
Of fields most fatal to an English host;
Where Bruce claimed freedom, or a glorious grave;
Nor victory could desert a band so brave;
And Norman Edward saw his standards fall,
Like Rome's proud trophies, on the Roman wall;
When elder Graham led on his mountain band,
And razed the rampart broad from strand to strand.

(1) See Note ROMAN WALL, at end of Canto.


(2) [Through some undoubted transposition in the MSS. these lines descriptive of the iron foundry of Carron-the most extensive in Europe-are made to apply in Dr Leyden's edition of this Poem to the Kelvin, where no establishment of the kind exists, or has ever existed.]

From Graham a fruitful race of heroes springs, Dreadful in war! and true to Scotia's kings; (1) But great Montrose stands foremost of the line, A chief with ancient heroes doomed to shine; Fate in his arm, his very name an host, His conquering standards flew from coast to coast. Where Scotstown shines afar with snowy light, And beauteous Renfield captivates the sight, His ample mirror Clyde to both displays, Where each her image with delight surveys: () So at one glass two rival beauties stand, Their charms admiring, one on either hand : Now self-approved, each looks with lofty scorn; Now sinks each bosom, with black envy torn: Now triumph flashes from each lovely eye; Now pride, desponding, heaves the unwilling sigh. Where the proud bridge on stately arches rides, And from his height surveys the slumbering tides, (3) No motion dares his amorous sloth molest, Or ruffle Renfield's image on the breast

Of tranquil Cart, who holds his silent way



Where Cathcart's race maintain their ancient sway. 350 Of all the clans that grace fair Renfrew's soil,

The first in power appears the potent Lyle,

(1) See Note CLAN GRAHAM, at end of Canto.

(2) [Scotstown and Renfield, now Scotstown and Blytheswood, mansions, the one on the north, the other on the south side of the Clyde near where it receives the waters of the Cart. Scotstown, an ancient inheritance of a branch of the Montgomeries, now the property of Miss Oswald, is a modern house. Blytheswood, an elegant building of the finest white freestone, so named in honour of a small but now valuable estate belonging to the family, on which a great part of the north-western portion of Glasgow is built, finely situated upon the point of land where the united streams of the Cart and the Gryffe mingle with the Clyde, was built in 1821, upon the old property, and near to the old house of Renfield. The prospect here was pronounced by Pennant "the most elegant and the softest of any in North Britain."]

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(3) [The proud bridge "no longer exists, having been swept away by a flood in 1809. A new one, at a cost of £17,000, was completed in 1812, but on a different site, higher up the stream ]

Whose blood with graceful Eglinton's still blends,
In Pollock's veins and Houston's still descends.
The Dennistons, of ancient wealth and fame;
The Crawfords brave, an old illustrious name!
Lindsay's high blood with ancient Barclay's joins,
And first of Scottish Earls in glory shines.
Here Wallace shone, a race of matchless might,
Gentle in peace, but terrible in fight!

The fame of Wallace never can expire,
While Scottish breasts heroic deeds admire.

And friendship hither Ross from England drew,
The royal Bruce's fortunes to pursue;

And hence the faithful race of Erskine springs,
Marr's lords, the guardians of our youthful kings;
To whom an ancient nation dared intrust
Their future hopes, and ever found them just.
But high o'er all, the chiefs of Banquo's race,
Illustrious Stewarts dignified the place.

Here, raised upon a verdant mount sublime,
To heaven complaining of the wrongs of time,
And ruthless force of sacrilegious hands,
Crookstone, their ancient seat, in ruins stands; (1)
Nor Clyde's whole course an ampler prospect yields,
Of spacious plains, and well improven fields;
Which, here, the gently rising hills surround,
And, there, the cloud supporting mountains bound;
Now fields with stately dwellings thronger charged,
And populous cities, by their trade enlarged.




(1) Crookstone belonged originally to the ancient family of the Crucks in Renfrewshire, and came by marriage to the Stewarts of Darnley, in the reign of David II. The Stewarts, the most illustrious clan of Renfrewshire, are thus characterized by Defoe:

Stewart, ancient as the hills from which they sprung;

The mountains still do to the name belong:

From hence they branch to every high degree,

And foreign courts embrace the progeny.

Here youthful Shaws, by vigorous industry, (1)
Aspires in fame with ancient towns to vie;
Fair Paisley imitates, who justly boasts
Her manufactures, famed on foreign coasts:
For fine invention o'er the work presides,
And neat dexterity the shuttle guides.

By Crookstone Castle waves the still-green yew,
The first that met the royal Mary's view,
When, bright in charms, the youthful princess led
The graceful Darnley to her throne and bed:
Embossed in silver, now, its branches green
Transcend the myrtle of the Paphian queen. (2)

But dark Langside, from Crookstone viewed afar,
Still seems to range in pomp the rebel war.

Here, when the moon rides dimly through the sky,
The peasant sees broad dancing standards fly,
And one bright female form, with sword and crown,
Still grieves to view her banners beaten down. (3)

But Finlaystone demands the choicest lays;
A generous muse's theme in former days,
When soft Montgomery poured the rural lay;
Whether he sung the vermeil dawn of day,
Or, in the mystic wreath, to soothe his woe,
Twined the red CHERRY with the sable SLOE;

(1) [Now generally known as Pollockshaws.]



(2) [The "Crookstone Tree" is no more. In 1710 Crawford spoke of it as a "noble monument." In 1782 the trunk, at 7 feet from the ground, measured 10 feet. Having unfortunately been pruned, as an experiment, it gradually withered and died. In 1817 the worthy proprieter, Sir John Maxwell, to preserve it from rapacious relic-collectors, rooted out the stump. Its fragments have been dispersed over the country as female ornaments, drinking cups and snuff boxes.]

(3) [The beautiful and touching scene in 'The Abbot,' which represents Mary beholding the fatal fight of Langside from the rising ground before Crookstone, is familiar to every reader, and this traditionary report is the foundation of the superstition embodied in these lines. Mr. Ramsay in his descriptive Notes of Renfrewshire, calls into question the probability of this tradition. It has however obtained a currency almost universal.]

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