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Title: On Old-World Highways
       A Book of Motor Rambles in France and Germany and the
       Record of a Pilgrimage from Land's End to John O'Groats
       in Britain

Author: Thomas Dowler Murphy

Release Date: May 2, 2014 [EBook #45567]

Language: English


Produced by Sonya Schermann, Greg Bergquist and the Online
Distributed Proofreading Team at (This
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Transcriber's Notes:

When italics were used in the original book, the corresponding text has
been surrounded by _underscores_.

Some presumed printer's errors have been corrected. In particular,
punctuation has been normalized and entries in the List of Illustrations
and in the Index were altered to match the main text. Further, a single
entry in the original List of Illustrations which referred to two
distinct maps was split into two entries (SCOTLAND and ENGLAND AND

Other corrections are listed below with the original text (top) and the
replacement text (bottom):

                    p. 40 many quaint timbered house
                          many quaint timbered houses

                  p. 95 employe

                  p. 249 Wordsworh

                  p. 212 Fort Williams
                         Fort William

                  p. 311 appoach

                  p. 350 July 5, 1585
                         July 5, 1685


                              ON OLD-WORLD


                          _By the Same Author_

                   British Highways and Byways from a
                               Motor Car
                            THIRD IMPRESSION
       Sixteen Reproductions in Color, and Thirty-two Duogravures
                    320 Pages, 8vo, Decorated Cloth
                          Price (Boxed), $3.00


                 In Unfamiliar England With a Motor Car
                           SECOND IMPRESSION
       Sixteen Reproductions in Color and Forty-eight Duogravures
                    400 Pages, 8vo, Decorated Cloth
                          Price (Boxed), $3.00


                 Three Wonderlands of the American West
                           SECOND IMPRESSION
       Sixteen Reproductions in Color and Thirty-two Duogravures
                  180 Pages, Tall 8vo, Decorated Cloth
                        Price (Boxed) $3.00 Net


                          L. C. PAGE & COMPANY


 From original painting by the late John MacWhirter, R. A.]


                         ON OLD-WORLD HIGHWAYS

           A Book of Motor Rambles in France and Germany and
               the Record of a Pilgrimage from Land's End
                      to John O'Groats in Britain.

                           BY THOS. D. MURPHY


                      FROM PHOTOGRAPHS. ALSO MAPS
                       SHOWING ROUTES OF AUTHOR.


                          L. C. PAGE & COMPANY


                           _Copyright, 1914_
                        BY L. C. PAGE & COMPANY


                         _All rights reserved_


                    First Impression, January, 1914



I know that of making books of travel there is no limit--they come from
the press in a never-ending stream; but no one can say that any one of
these is superfluous if it finds appreciative readers, even though they
be but few.

My chief excuse for the present volume is the success of my previous
books of motor travel, which have run through several fair-sized
editions. I have had many warmly appreciative letters concerning these
from native Englishmen and the books were commended by the Royal
Automobile Club Journal as accurate and readable. So I take it that my
point of view from the wheel of a motor car interests some people, and I
shall feel justified in writing such books so long as this is the case.

I know that in some instances I have had to deal with hackneyed
subjects; but I have striven for a different viewpoint and I hope I have
contributed something worth while in describing even well-known places.
On the other hand, I know that I have discovered many delightful nooks
and corners in Britain that even the guide-books have overlooked.

Besides, I am sure that books of travel have ample justification in the
fact that travel itself is one of the greatest of educators and
civilizers. It teaches us that we are not the only people--that wisdom
shall not die with us alone. It shows us that in some things other
people may do better than we are doing and it may enable us to avoid
mistakes that others make. In short, it widens our horizon and tones
down our self-conceit--or it should do all of this if we keep ears and
eyes open when abroad.

I make no apology for the fact that the greater bulk of the present
volume deals with the Motherland, even if its title does not so
indicate. Her romantic charm is as limitless as the sea that encircles
her. Even now, after our long journeyings in every corner of the Island,
I would not undertake to say to what extent we might still carry our
exploration in historic and picturesque Britain. Should one delight in
ivy-covered castles, rambling old manors, ruined abbeys, romantic
country-seats, haunted houses, great cathedrals and storied churches
past numbering, I know not where the limit may be. But I do know that
the little party upon whose experiences this book is founded is still
far from being satisfied after nearly twenty thousand miles of motoring
in the Kingdom, and if I fail to make plain why we still think of the
highways and byways of Britain with an undiminished longing, the fault
is mine rather than that of my subject.

In this book, as in my previous ones, the illustrations play a principal
part. The color plates are from originals by distinguished artists and
the photographs have been carefully selected and perfectly reproduced.
The maps will also be of assistance in following the text. I hope that
these valuable adjuncts may make amends for the many literary
shortcomings of my text.


Red Oak, Iowa, January 1, 1914.


                I BOULOGNE TO ROUEN                            1

               II THE CHATEAU DISTRICT                        29

              III ORLEANS TO THE GERMAN BORDER                45

               IV COLMAR TO OBERAMMERGAU                      59

                V BAVARIA AND THE RHINE                       77

               VI THE CAPTAIN'S STORY                        104

              VII A FLIGHT THROUGH THE NORTH                 125

             VIII THE MOTHERLAND ONCE MORE                   145

               IX OLD WHITBY                                 157

                X SCOTT COUNTRY AND HEART OF HIGHLANDS       173

               XI IN SUTHERLAND AND CAITHNESS                191

              XII DOWN THE GREAT GLEN                        210

             XIII ALONG THE WEST COAST                       224

              XIV ODD CORNERS OF LAKELAND                    246

               XV WE DISCOVER DENBIGH                        262

              XVI CONWAY                                     279



              XIX LAND'S END TO LONDON                       336

               XX THE ENGLISH AND THEIR INSTITUTIONS         355


                         LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS

                              COLOR PLATES

     THE MOUNTAIN MEADOWS, BAVARIAN TYROL              Frontispiece

     SUNSET IN TOURAINE                                           1

     WOODS IN BRITTANY                                           26

     PIER LANE, WHITBY                                          164

     HARVEST TIME, STRATHTAY                                    180

     A HIGHLAND LOCH                                            188

     ACKERGILL HARBOUR, CAITHNESS                               204

     GLEN AFFRICK, NEAR INVERNESS                               208

     THE GREAT GLEN, SUNSET                                     210

     "THE COTTER'S SATURDAY NIGHT"                              236

     THE FALLEN GIANT--A HIGHLAND STUDY                          240

     CONWAY CASTLE, NORTH WALES                                 280

     "THE NEW ARRIVAL"                                          282

     KYNANCE COVE, CORNWALL                                     334

     SUNSET NEAR LAND'S END, CORNWALL                           336

     "A DISTANT VIEW OF THE TOWERS OF WINDSOR"                  355


     ST. LO FROM THE RIVER                                       18

     A STREET IN ST. MALO                                        24

     CHENONCEAUX--THE ORIENTAL FRONT                              32

     AMBOISE FROM ACROSS THE LOIRE                               34

     GRAND STAIRWAY OF FRANCIS I. AT BLOIS                       36


     CASTLE AT FUSSEN                                            66

     OBERAMMERGAU                                                70

     ULM AND THE CATHEDRAL                                       82

     GOETHE'S HOUSE--FRANKFORT                                    86

     BINGEN ON THE RHINE                                         88

     CASTLE RHEINSTEIN                                           90

     EHRENFELS ON THE RHINE                                      92

     RUINS OF CASTLE RHEINFELS                                   94

     LUXEMBURG--GENERAL VIEW                                     102

     ST. WULFRAM'S CHURCH--GRANTHAM                              150


     HOTEL, JOHN O'GROATS                                       200

     URQUHART CASTLE, LOCH NESS                                 214

     THE MACDONALD MONUMENT, GLENCOE                            220

     "McCAIG'S FOLLY," OBAN                                     224

     GLENLUCE ABBEY                                             242

     SWEETHEART ABBEY                                           244

     WORDSWORTH'S BIRTHPLACE--COCKERMOUTH                        250

     CALDER ABBEY, CUMBERLAND                                   252

     KENDAL CASTLE                                              258

     KENDAL PARISH CHURCH                                       260

     DENBIGH CASTLE--THE ENTRANCE AND KEEP                       266

     ST. HILARY'S CHURCH, DENBIGH                               272



     INNER COURT, PLAS MAWR, CONWAY                             286

     CONWAY CASTLE--THE OUTER WALL                               292

     BERRY POMEROY CASTLE, ENTRANCE TOWERS                      312

     BERRY POMEROY CASTLE--WALL OF INNER COURT                   316

     A STREET IN EAST LOOE--CORNWALL                             322


     LANSALLOS CHURCH, POLPERRO                                 326

     A STREET IN FOWEY--CORNWALL                                 330

     PROBUS CHURCH TOWER, CORNWALL                              332


     FRANCE AND GERMANY                                         380

     SCOTLAND                                                   388

     ENGLAND AND WALES                                          388


                         Through Summer France
                             The Fatherland


 [Illustration: SUNSET IN TOURAINE
 From original painting by Leon Richet]


                         On Old-World Highways


                           BOULOGNE TO ROUEN

Our three summer pilgrimages in Britain have left few unexplored corners
in the tight little island--we are thinking of new worlds to conquer.
Beyond the narrow channel the green hills of France offer the nearest
and most attractive field. Certainly it is the most accessible of
foreign countries for the motorist in England and every year increasing
numbers of English-speaking tourists are seen in the neighboring
republic. The service of the Royal Automobile Club, with its usual
enterprise and thoroughness, leaves little to be desired in arranging
the details of a trip and supplies complete information as to route. An
associate membership was accorded me on behalf of the Automobile Club of
America, whose card I presented and which serves an American many useful
ends in European motordom. Mr. Maroney, the genial touring secretary, at
once interested himself in our proposed tour. He undertook to outline a
route, to arrange for transportation of our car across the Channel, to
provide for duties and licenses and, lastly, to secure a courier-guide
familiar with the countries we proposed to invade and proficient in the
French and German languages. The necessary guide-books and road-maps are
carried in stock by the club and the only charge made is for these. Our
proposed route was traced on the map, a typewritten list of towns and
distances was made and a day or two later I was advised that a guide had
been engaged. Mr Maroney expressed regret that the young men who serve
the club regularly in this capacity were already employed, but he had
investigated the man secured for us and found him competent and

"Still," said Mr. Maroney with characteristic British caution, "we would
feel better satisfied with one of our own men on the job; but it is the
best we can do for you under the circumstances."

We learned that our guide was a young Englishman of good family, at
present in somewhat straitened circumstances, which made him willing to
accept any position for which his talents might fit him. He had
previously piloted motor parties through France and Italy and spoke four
languages with perfect fluency. He had done a lot of knocking about,
having recently been in a shipwreck off the coast of South America and
having held a captain's commission in the South African War. We
therefore called him "the Captain," and I may as well adopt that
designation in referring to him in these pages, since his real name
would interest no one. He was able to drive the car and declared
willingness to do a chauffeur's part in caring for it. The only doubt
expressed by Mr. Maroney was that the Captain might "forget his
place"--that of a servant--and before long consider himself a member of
our party, and with characteristic frankness the touring secretary
cautioned our guide in my presence against any such presumption.

It is a fine May afternoon when we drive from London to Folkestone to be
on hand in time to attend to the formalities for crossing the Channel on
the following day. Police traps, we are warned, abound along the road
and we proceed quite soberly, taking some four hours for the
seventy-five miles including the slow work of getting out of London. The
Royal Pavilion Hotel on low ground near the docks is strictly
first-class and its rates prove more moderate than we found at its
competitors on the cliff.

Our car is left at the dock, arrangements for its transport having been
made beforehand by the Royal Automobile Club; but we saunter down in the
morning to see it loaded. We need not worry about this, for it goes "at
the company's risk," a provision which costs us ten shillings extra. It
is pushed upon a large platform and a steam crane soon swings it high in
the air preparatory to depositing it on the steamer deck.

"She's an airship now," said an old salt as the car reached its highest
point. "We did fetch over a sure-enough airship last week--belonged to
that fellow Paulhan and he's a decentish chap, too; you'd never think he
was a Frenchman!"--which would seem to indicate that the entente
cordiale had not entirely cleared away prejudice from the mind of our

Our crossing was as comfortable as any Channel crossing could be--which
in our case is not saying much, for that green, rushing streak of salt
water, the English Channel, always gives us a squeamish feeling, no
matter how "smooth" it may be. We are only too glad to get on terra
firma in Boulogne and to see our car almost immediately swung to the

I had read in a recently published book by a motor tourist of the
dreadful ordeal he underwent in securing his license to drive; a stern
official sat beside him and put him through all his paces to ascertain
if he was competent to pilot a car in France. I was expecting to be
compelled to give a similar exhibit, when the Captain came out of the
station with driving licenses for both himself and me and announced that
we would be ready to proceed as soon as he attached a pair of very
indistinct number plates.

"But the examination 'pour competence,'" I said.

"O," he replied, "I just explained to his nobs that we were in a great
hurry and couldn't wait for an examination--and a five-franc piece did
the rest." A piece of diplomacy which no doubt left the honest official
feeling happier than if I had given him a joy-ride over the cobbles of

Filling our tank with "essence," which we learn, after translating some
jargon concerning "litres" and "francs," will cost about thirty-five
cents per gallon--we strike out on the road to Montreuil. It proves a
typical French highway and our first impressions are confirmed later on.
The road is broad, with perfect contour and easy grades, running
straight away for miles--or should I say kilometers?--and showing every
evidence of engineering skill and careful construction. But it is
old-fashioned macadam without any binding material. The motor car has
torn up the surface and scattered it in loose dust which rises in clouds
from our wheels or has been swept away by the wind, leaving the roadbed
bare but rough and jagged--a perfect grindstone on rubber tires. The
same description applies to nearly all the roads we traversed in France,
and no doubt the vast preponderance of them are still in the same state
or worse. A movement for re-surfacing the main highways is now in
progress and in a few years France will again be at the front, though at
this time she is far behind England in the matter of modern automobile
roads. The long straight stretches and the absence of police traps in
the country make fast time possible--if one is willing to pay the tire
bill. Thirty miles an hour is an easy jog and though we left Boulogne
after three, we find we have covered one hundred and ten miles at
nightfall, including a stop for luncheon. At Montreuil we strike the
first and only serious grade, a long, steep hill up which winds the
cobble-paved main street of the town--our first experience with the
cobble pavement of the provincial towns, of which more anon.

A few miles beyond Montreuil the Captain steers us into a narrow byroad
which leads into the quaint little fisher town of Berck-sur-Mer and,
indeed, the much-abused "quaint" is not misapplied here. The old
buildings straggle along the single street, quite devoid of any touch of
the picturesque and thronged by people of all degrees. We see many queer
four-wheeled vehicles--not much larger than toy wagons--drawn by ponies
and donkeys, the drivers lying at full length on their backs, staring at
the sky or asleep, their motive power wandering along at its own sweet
will. It is indeed ridiculous to see full-grown men riding in such a
primitive fashion, but the sight is not unusual. We meet a troop of
prawn fishers coming in from the sea--as miserable specimens of humanity
as we ever beheld--ragged, bedraggled, bare-headed and bare-footed
creatures; many old women among them, prancing along like animated

Swinging back into the main highway, we soon reach Abbeville, whose
roughly paved streets wind between bare, unattractive buildings. In
places malodorous streams run along the streets--practically open
sewers, if the smell is any indication. Abbeville affords an example of
the terrible cobblestone pavement that we found in nearly all French
cities of the second class. The round, uneven stones--in the States we
call them "niggerheads"--have probably lain undisturbed for centuries.
Besides the natural roughness of such a pavement, there are numerous
chuck-holes. No matter how slowly we drive, we bounce and jump over
these stones, which strike the tires with sledge-hammer force, sending a
series of shivers throughout the car. It is no wonder that such
pavements and the grindstone roads often limit the life of tires to a
few hundred miles.

Out of Abbeville we "hit up" pretty strongly, for it is nearly dark and
we plan to reach Rouen for the night. The straight fine road offers
temptation to speed, under the circumstances, and our odometer does not
vary much from forty miles--when we are suddenly treated to a surprise
that makes us more cautious about speeding on French roads at dusk. In a
little hollow we strike a ditch six inches deep by two or three feet in
width--a "canivau," as they designate it in France--with a terrific jolt
which almost threatens the car with destruction. The frame strikes the
axles with fearful force; it seems impossible that nothing should be
broken. A careful search fails to reveal any apparent damage, though a
fractured axle-rod a short time later is undoubtedly a result of the
violent blow. It seems strange that an important main road should have
such a dangerous defect, though we find many similar cases later; but as
we travel no more after dusk, and generally at much more moderate speed,
we have no further mishap of the kind. We light our lamps and proceed at
a more sober pace to Neufchatel, where we decide to stop for the night
at the rather unattractive-looking Lion d'Or. We have reason to
congratulate ourselves, for the wayside inn is really preferable to the
Angleterre at Rouen and the rates are scarcely half so much. It is a
rambling old house, partly surrounding a stable-yard court where the
motor is stored for the night. The regular meal time is past, but a
plain supper is prepared for us. We are tired enough not to be too
critical of our accommodations and the rooms and beds are clean and
fairly comfortable. We have breakfast at a long table where the guests
all sit together and the fare, while plain, is good.

There is nothing of interest in Neufchatel, though its cheese has given
it a world-wide fame. It is a market town of four or five thousand
people, depending largely on the prosperous country surrounding it.

We are early away for Rouen and in course of an hour we come in sight of
the cathedral spire, the highest in all France, rising nearly five
hundred feet and overtopping Salisbury, the loftiest in England, by
almost one hundred feet. At the Captain's recommendation we seek the
Hotel Angleterre--which means the Hotel England--a bid, no doubt, for
the patronage of the numerous English-speaking tourists who visit the
city. There is a deal of dickering before we get settled, for the rates
are unreasonably high; but after considerable parley a bargain is made.
We enter the diminutive "lift," which holds two persons by a little
crowding, but after the first trip we use the stairway to save time.

One could not "do" Rouen in the guide-book sense in less than a
week--but such is not the object of our present tour. If one brings a
motor to France he can hardly afford to let it stand idle to spend
several days in any city. We shall see what we can of Rouen in a day and
take the road again in the morning.

Our first thought is of Jeanne d'Arc and her martyrdom in the old city
and our second of the cathedral, in some respects one of the most
remarkable in Europe. It is but a stone's throw from our hotel and is
consequently our first attraction. The facade is imposing despite its
incongruous architectural details and has a world of intricate carving
and sculpture, partly concealed by scaffolding, for the church is being
restored. The towers flanking the facade are unfinished, both lacking
the tall Gothic spire originally planned and, indeed, necessary to give
a harmonious effect to the whole. A spire of open iron-work nearly five
hundred feet in height replaces the original wooden structure burned by
lightning in 1822 and is severely criticised as being out of keeping
with the elaborate stone building which it surmounts.

Once inside we are overwhelmed by a sense of vastness--the great church
is nearly five hundred feet in length, while the transept is a third as
wide. The arches of the nave seem almost lost in the dim, softly toned
light that streams in from the richly colored windows, some of which
date from the twelfth century. If the exterior is incongruous, the
interior is indeed a symphony in stone, despite a few jarring notes in
the decorations of some of the private chapels. There are many beautiful
monuments, mainly to French church dignitaries whom we never heard of
and care little about, but the battered gigantic limestone effigy
discovered in 1838 is full of fascinating interest, for it represents
Richard the Lion-Hearted--the Richard of "Ivanhoe"--whose heart,
enclosed in a triple casket of lead, wood and silver, is buried beneath.
The figure is nearly seven feet in length and we wonder if this is a
true representation of the stature of our childhood's hero, who,

                      "starred with idle glory, came
                Bearing from leaguered Ascalon
                      The barren splendour of his fame,
                And, vanquished by an unknown bow,
                Lies vainly great at Fontevraud."

For Richard's body was interred at Fontevraud, near Orleans, with other
members of English royalty. Henry II. is also buried in Rouen
Cathedral--all indicative that there was a day when English kings
regarded Normandy as their home!

Another memorial which interests us is dedicated to LaSalle, the great
explorer, who was born in Rouen. He was buried, as every schoolboy
knows, in the great river which he discovered, but his memory is
cherished by his native city as the man who gave the empire of Louisiana
to France.

Rouen has at least two other churches of first magnitude--St. Ouen and
St. Maclou--but we shall have to content ourselves with a cursory glance
at their magnificence. The former is declared to be "one of the most
beautiful Gothic churches in existence, surpassing the cathedral both in
extent and excellence of style." Such is the pronouncement of that final
authority on such matters, Herr Baedeker!

But, after all, is not Rouen best known to the world because of its
connection with the strange figure of Jeanne d'Arc? Indeed, her career
savors of myth and legend--not the sober fact of history--and it is hard
to conceive of the scene that took place around the fatal spot in the
Vieux-Marche, now marked with a large stone bearing the inscription,
"Jeanne d'Arc, 30 Mar. 1431." Here a tender young woman whose only crime
was an implicit belief that she was divinely inspired, was burned at the
stake by order of a reverend bishop who, surrounded by his satellites,
approvingly looked on the dreadful scene. And these men were not painted
savages, but high dignitaries of Christendom. Much of old Rouen stands
to-day as it stood then, but what a vast change has been wrought in
humankind! Only a single ruinous tower remains of the castle where the
Maid was confined. While imprisoned here she was intimidated by being
shown the instruments of torture; but she withstood the callous
brutality of her persecutors with fortitude and heroism that baffled
them, though it only enraged them the more.

We acknowledge the hopelessness of getting any adequate idea of a city
of such antiquity and importance in a day and the Captain says we may as
well quit trying. He suggests that we take the tram for Bonsecours,
situated on the steep hill towering high over the town from the right
bank of the river. Here is a modern Catholic cemetery with many handsome
tombs and monuments and, in the center, a recently erected memorial to
Joan of Arc. This consists of three little temples in the Renaissance
style, the central chapel enclosing a marble statue of the Maid. There
is a modern church near by whose interior--a solid mass of bright green,
red and gold--is the most gorgeous we have seen. The specialty of this
church is "votive tablets"--the walls are covered with little marble
placards telling what some particular saint has done for the donor in
response to a vow. A round charge, the Captain says, is made for each
tablet, so that the income of Bonsecours Church must be a good one.

But one will not visit Bonsecours to see the church or the memorial,
though both are interesting in their way, but for the unmatched view of
the city and the Seine Valley, which good authorities pronounce one of
the finest panoramas in Europe. From the memorial the whole city lies
spread out like a map--so far beneath that the five-hundred-foot spire
of Notre Dame is below the level of our vision. The city, with its
splendid spires rising amidst the wilderness of streets and house-roofs,
fills the valley near at hand and the broad, shining folds of the Seine,
with its old bridges and wooded shores, lends a glorious variety to the
scene. The view up and down the river is quite unobstructed, covering a
beautiful and prosperous valley bounded on either side by the verdant
hills of Normandy. This view alone well repays a visit to Bonsecours,
whether one's stay in Rouen be short or long.

In leaving Rouen we cross the Seine and follow the fine straight road
which runs through Pont Audemer to Honfleur on the coast. This was not
our prearranged route, but the Captain apparently gravitates toward the
sea whenever possible, and he is responsible for the diversion. From
Honfleur we follow the narrow road along the coast--its sharp turns,
devious windings, short steep hills and the hedgerows which border it in
places recalling the byways of Devon and Cornwall. We again come out on
the shore at Trouville-sur-Mer, a watering place with an array of
imposing hotels. It is not yet the "season" and many of the hotels are
closed, but the Belvue, one of the largest, is doing business and we
have an elaborate luncheon here which costs more than we like to pay.

Out of Trouville our road still pursues the coast, running through a
series of resorts and fishing villages until it swings inland for
Caen--a quaint, irregular old place which, next to Rouen, declares
Baedeker, is the most interesting city in Normandy. We are sorry that
many of its show-places are closed to us, for it is Sunday and the
churches are not open to tourist inspection. In St. Stephen's we might
have seen the tomb of William the Conqueror, though his remains no
longer rest beneath it, having been disinterred and scattered by the
Huguenots in 1562. Caen has two other great churches--St. Peter's and
Trinity, which we can view only from the outside.

It is Pentecost Sunday and the streets are thronged with young girls in
white who have taken part in confirmation services; we have seen others
at many places during the day. It is about the only thing to remind us
that it is Sunday, for the shops are open, work is going on in the
fields, and road-making is in progress; we note little suspension of
week-day activities. The peasants whom we see by the roadside and in the
little villages are generally very dirty but seem happy and content. The
farm houses are usually unattractive, often with filthy
surroundings--muck-heaps in front of the doors--not unlike what we saw
in some parts of Ireland.

The road from Caen to Bayeux runs as straight as an arrow's flight,
broad, level and bordered--as most main roads are in France--by rows of
stately trees. We give the motor full rein and the green sunny fields
flit joyously past us. What a relief to "open her up" without thought of
a policeman behind every bush! Is it any wonder that the oft-trapped
Englishman considers France a motorist's paradise?

The spires of Bayeux Cathedral soon rise before us and we must content
ourselves with the exterior of this magnificent church. Not so with the
museum which contains the Bayeux Tapestry, for the lady member of our
party is determined to see this famous piece of needlework, willy nilly.
The custodian is finally located and we are admitted to view the relic.
It is a strip of linen cloth eighteen inches wide and two hundred thirty
feet long, embroidered in colored thread with scenes representing the
Conquest of England by William of Normandy. It is claimed that the work
was done by Queen Matilda and her maidens, though this is disputed by
some authorities; but its importance as a contemporary representation of
historic events of the time of William I. far outweighs its artistic

The main road from Bayeux to St. Lo is one of the most glorious highways
in France. It runs through an almost unbroken forest of giant trees for
a good part of the distance--a little more than twenty miles--and the
sunset sky gleaming through the stately trunks relieves the otherwise
somber effect.

By happy accident we reach St. Lo at nightfall and turn into the
courtyard of the Hotel de Univers, a comfortable-looking old house
invitingly close to the roadside. I say by happy accident, for we never
planned to stop at St. Lo and but for chance might have remained in
ignorance of one of the most charming little cathedral towns in France.
Indeed, we feel that St. Lo is ours by right of discovery, for we find
but scant mention of it in the guide-books. After an excellent though
unpretentious dinner, we sally forth from our inn to view our
surroundings in the deepening twilight. The town is situated on the
margin of a still little river which wonderfully reflects the ancient
vine-covered houses that climb the sharply sloping hillside. The huge
bulk of the cathedral looms mysteriously over the town and its soaring
twin spires are sharply outlined against the dim moonlit sky. The towers
are not exact duplicates, as they appear from a distance, but both
exhibit the same general characteristics of Gothic style. The whole
scene is one of enchanting beauty; the dull glow of the river, the
houses massed on the hillside, with lighted windows gleaming here and
there and and crowning all the vast sentinellike form of the
cathedral--a scene that would lose half its charm if viewed by the
flaunting light of day. And we secretly resolve that we shall have no
such disenchantment; we shall steal quietly out of St. Lo in the early
morning with never a backward glance. We do not, therefore, see the
interior of the church, which has several features of peculiar interest,
and we may be pardoned for adopting the description of an English

"Notre Dame de Saint-Lo has a very unusual and original plan, widening
towards the east and adding another aisle to the north and south
ambulatories. On the north side is its chief curiosity, an out-door
pulpit, built at the end of the fifteenth century and probably used by
Huguenot preachers, to whom a sermon was a sermon, whether preached
under a vaulted roof or the open sky. What strikes one most about the
interior of the church is its want of light. The nave is absolutely
unlighted, having neither tri-forium nor clerestory, and the aisles have
only one tier of large windows, whose glass is old and very fine, though
in most cases pieced together; the nave piers are massive, with a
cluster of three shafts; those of the choir are quite simple, and have
one noticeable feature, the absence of capitals, the vault mouldings
dying away into the pier."

 [Illustration: ST. LO FROM THE RIVER]

We shall remember our hotel as the best type of the small-town French
inn--a simple, old-fashioned house where we had attentive service and a
studied effort to please was made by all connected with the place. And
not the least of its merits are its moderate charges--less than half we
paid at many of the larger places, often for less satisfactory

Twenty miles westward from St. Lo we come to Coutances, which boasts of
a cathedral church of the first magnitude and one of the oldest in
Normandy, dating almost in entirety from the thirteenth century. Leaving
the main highway a little beyond Coutances, we follow the narrow byroad
running about a mile from the coast through Granville, a well-known
seaside resort, to Avranches. This road is scarcely more than a winding
lane with many sharp little hills, hedge-bordered in places and often
overarched by trees--a little like the roads of Southern England, a type
not very common in France. South of Granville it closely follows the
shore for a few miles, then swings inland for a mile or two, affording
only occasional glimpses of the sea. Avranches, from its commanding site
on a lofty hill, soon breaks into view, and the Captain suggests
luncheon at the Grand Hotel de France et de Londres, which he says is
famous in this section. Besides, it is well worth while to ascend the
hill for the panorama of St. Michel's Bay, with its cathedral-crowned
islet, which may be seen to the best advantage from the town. It is a
stiff, winding climb to the summit, but we reach the cobble-paved,
vine-embowered court of the hotel just in time for dinner. I suppose the
"Londres" was added to the name of the inn with a view of catching the
English-speaking trade, which is considerable in Avranches, since the
town is the stopping-place of many tourists who visit Mont St. Michel.
From the courtyard we are ushered into the dining-room where, after the
fashion of country inns in France, a single long table serves all the
guests. At the head sits the proprietor, a suave, gray-bearded gentleman
who graciously does the courtesies of the table. The meal is quite an
elaborate one and there is plenty of old port wine for the bibulously
inclined. I might say here that this inclusion of wines without extra
charge is a common but not universal practice with the French country
inns; generally these liquors are of the cheapest quality, little better
than vinegar, and one trial will make the average tourist a teetotaler
unless he wishes to order a better grade as an "extra." After the meal
our host comes out to wish us "bon voyage" as we depart and we are at a
loss to understand his intention when he picks up a small ladder and
begins climbing up the wall. We see, however, that a rose-vine bearing a
few beautiful blossoms clings to the stones above a window. The old
gentleman cuts some of the choicest flowers and presents them, with a
gracious bow, to the lady of our party.

The new causeway makes Mont St. Michel easily accessible to motorists
and affords a splendid view as one approaches the towered and pinnacled
rock and the little town that climbs its steep sides. Formerly the tide
covered the rough road that led to the mount, much the same as it still
covers the approach to the Cornish St. Michael; but the new grade is
above high-tide level and the abbey may be reached at any time of the
day. It is a wearisome climb to the summit--for the car cannot enter the
narrow streets of the town--and for some time we wait the pleasure of
the guide, who, being a government official, does not permit himself to
be unduly hurried. He speaks only French and but for the Captain's
services we should know little of his story. To our half-serious remark
that a lift would save visitors some hard work he replies with a shrug,

"A lift in Mont St. Michel? It wouldn't be Mont St. Michel any
longer!"--a hint of how carefully the atmosphere of mediaevalism is
preserved here.

The abbey as it stands to-day is largely the result of an extensive
restoration begun by the government in 1863. This accounts for the
surprisingly perfect condition of much of the building, and it also
confirms the wisdom of the undertaking by which a great service has been
rendered to architecture. Previous to the restoration the abbey was used
as a prison, but it is now chiefly a show-place, though services are
regularly conducted in the chapel. Especially noteworthy are the
cloisters, a thirteenth-century reproduction, with two hundred and
twenty columns of polished granite embedded in the wall and ranged in
double arcades, the graceful vaults decorated with exquisite carving and
a beautiful frieze. The most notable apartment is the Hall of the
Chevaliers, likewise a thirteenth-century replica. The vaulting of solid
stone is supported by a triple row of massive columns running the full
length of nearly one hundred feet--like ranks of giant tree trunks.
There is a beautiful chapel and dungeons and crypts galore, the names of
which we made no attempt to remember. Likewise we gave little attention
to the historic episodes of the mount, which are not of great
importance. The interest of the tourist centers in the remarkably
striking effect of the great group of Gothic buildings crowning the rock
and in the artistic beauty of the architectural details. Many wonderful
views of the sea and of the hills and towns around the bay may be seen
to splendid advantage from the terraces and battlements. There are a
number of pleasant little tea gardens where one may order light
refreshments and in the meanwhile enjoy a most inspiring view of the sea
and distant landscape. The little town at the foot of the rock is a
quaint old-world place with a single street but a few feet wide. The
small population subsists on tourist trade--restaurants and souvenir
shops making up the village. Little is doing to-day, as we are in
advance of the liveliest season. The greatest number of visitors come on
Sunday--a gala day at Mont St. Michel in summer.

A rough, stony road takes us to St. Malo and adds considerable wearisome
tire trouble to an already strenuous day. We are glad to stop at the
Hotel de Univers, even though it is not prepossessing from without.

 [Illustration: A STREET IN ST. MALO]

St. Malo's antiquity and quaintness are its stock in trade, and these,
together with its position on a peninsula, with the sea on every hand,
make it one of the most popular resorts in France. Steamers from
Southampton bring numbers of English visitors--we find no interpreter
needed at the hotel. The town is encircled by walls, the greater part
recently restored. They are none the less picturesque and the mighty
towers at the entrance gateways savor strongly indeed of mediaevalism.
In the older part of the town the streets are so narrow and crooked as
to exclude motors, the widest not exceeding twenty feet, and there are
seldom walks on either side. The houses bordering them show every
evidence of age--St. Malo is best described by the often overworked
term, "old-world." The huge church--formerly a cathedral--is so hedged
in by buildings that it is impossible to get a good view of the exterior
or to take a satisfactory photograph. As a result of such crowding it is
poorly lighted inside, though it really has an impressive interior. A
walk round the walls or ramparts of St. Malo affords a wonderful view of
the sea and surrounding country and also many interesting glimpses of
queer nooks and corners in the town itself. The bay is finest at full
tide, which rises here to the astonishing height of forty-nine feet
above low water. There are numerous fortified islands and it is possible
to reach some of these on foot when the tide is out. St. Malo was
besieged many times during the endless wars between England and France,
but owing to its remarkable fortifications was never taken.

There is more rough, badly worn road between St. Malo and Rennes, though
in the main it is broad and level. Its effect on tires is indeed
disheartening--we have run less than a thousand miles since landing and
new envelopes are showing signs of dissolution. Part of the game, no
doubt, but it is hard to be cheerful losers in such a game, to say the

Rennes, we find, has other claims to fame than the Dreyfus trial, which
is the first distinction that comes to mind. Its public museum and
galleries contain one of the best provincial collections in France, and
there is an imposing modern cathedral. We have an excellent lunch at the
Grand Hotel, though it is a dingy-looking place that would hardly invite
a lengthy stop if appearances should be considered. It is not Baedeker's
number one and there is doubtless a better hotel in Rennes.

The road which we follow in leaving the town is the best we have yet
traversed in France; it is broad, straight and newly surfaced, and the
thirty or more miles to Chateaubriant are rapidly covered. Here we find
an ancient town of a few thousand people, and an enormous old castle
partly in ruins, a fit match for Conway or Harlech in Britain. Its
square-topped, crenelated towers and long embrasured battlements are
quite different from the pointed Gothic style of the usual French

Beyond Chateaubriant the road runs broad and straight for miles through
a beautiful and prosperous country. Evidently the land is immensely
fertile and tilled with the thoroughness that characterizes French
agriculture. The small village is the only discordant note. We pass
through several all alike, bare, dirty and uninteresting, quite
different from the trim, flower-decked beauty of the English village.
And they grow steadily more repulsive as we progress farther inland
until, as we near the German border--but the subject is not pleasant
enough to anticipate!

 [Illustration: WOODS IN BRITTANY
 From original painting by Leon Richet]

Angers is a cathedral town of eighty thousand people on the River Maine,
two or three miles above its confluence with the Loire. It is of ancient
origin, but the French passion for making everything new (according to
an English critic) has swept away most of its old-time landmarks save
the castle and cathedral. The former was one of the most extensive
mediaeval fortresses in all France and is still imposing, despite the
fact that several of its original seventeen towers have been razed and
its great moat filled up. It is now more massive than picturesque. "It
has no beauty, no grace, no detail, nothing to charm or detain you; it
is simply very old and very big and it takes its place in your
recollections as a perfect specimen of a superannuated feudal
stronghold." The huge bastions, girded with iron bands, and the high
perpendicular walls springing out of the dark waters of the moat must
have made the castle impregnable against any method of assault before
the days of artillery. The castle is easily the most distinctive feature
of Angers and the one every visitor should see, though I must confess we
failed to visit it. We should also have seen the cathedral and museum,
but museums consume time and time is the first consideration on a motor

Our Hotel, the Grand, though old, is cleanly and pleasant, with high
ceilings and broad corridors which have immense full-length mirrors at
every turn. The prices for all this magnificence are quite
moderate--largely due, no doubt, to the Captain's prearrangement with
the manager. The service, however, is a little slack, especially at the

At Angers we are in the edge of the Chateau District, and as my chapter
has already run to considerable length, I shall avail myself of this
logical stopping place. The story of the French chateaus has filled many
a good-sized volume and may well occupy a separate chapter in this
rather hurried record.


                          THE CHATEAU DISTRICT

For more than two hundred miles after leaving Angers we follow a road
that may justly be described as one of the most unique and picturesque
in France. It seldom takes us out of sight of the shining Loire and most
of the way it runs on an embankment directly overlooking the river,
affording a panoramic view of the fertile valley which stretches to
green hills on either side. The embankment is primarily to confine the
waters during freshets, but its broad level top makes an excellent
roadbed, which is generally in good condition. A few miles out of Angers
we get our first view of the Loire, a majestic river three or four
hundred yards in width and in full flow at the present time. Occasional
islets add to the beauty of the scene and the landscape on either hand
is studded with splendid trees. It is an opulent-looking country and we
pass miles of green fields interspersed at times with unbroken stretches
of forest. There are several towns and villages on both sides of the
river and they are cleaner and better in appearance than those we passed
yesterday. Near Tours the country becomes more broken and the hillsides
are covered with endless vineyards. In places the clifflike hills rise
close to the roadside and these are honeycombed with caves; some are
occupied as dwellings by the peasants, but the greater number serve as
storage cellars for wine, which is produced in large quantities in this
vicinity. These modern "cliff-dwellers" are not so poor as their homes
would indicate; there are many well-to-do peasants among them. In fact,
the very poor are scarce in rural France; the universal habits of
industry and economy have spread prosperity among all classes of people;
rough attire and squalid surroundings are seldom indicative of real
poverty, as in England. Everybody is engaged in some useful
occupation--old women may be seen herding a cow, donkey or geese by the
roadside and knitting industriously the while.

Tours is one of the most beautiful of the older French provincial
cities. We have a fine view of the town from across the Loire as we
approach, for it lies on the south side of the river. It is a famous
tourist center--perhaps the first objective, after Paris, of the
majority of Americans and English, and it has several pretentious
hotels. We choose the newest, the Metropole, which proves very
satisfactory. Here the Captain's wiles fail to reduce the first-named
tariff, for the hotel is full, and we can only guess what the charge
might have been if not agreed upon in advance. In defense of his
bargaining the Captain tells a story of a previous trip he made with an
American party in Italy. English was spoken at a hotel where one of the
party asked the rates and the proprietor, assuming that his prospective
guests did not understand the language of the country, had a little
by-talk with a henchman as to charges and remarked that the tourists,
being Americans, would probably stand three or four times the regular
rates, which the inn-keeper proceeded to ask. He was greatly chagrinned
when the Captain repeated the substance of the conversation he had heard
and told the would-be robber that the party would seek accommodations

I will let this little digression take the place of descriptive remarks
concerning Tours, which has probably been written about more than any
other city in France excepting Paris. The cathedral everyone will see;
it is especially noteworthy for the facade, which is the best and most
ornate example of the so-called Flamboyant style in existence. The great
Renaissance towers are comparatively modern and to our mind lack the
grace and fitness of the pointed Gothic style.

The country about Tours has more to attract the tourist than the city
itself, for within a few miles are the famous chateaus which have been
exploited by literary travelers of all degrees. But it has lost none of
its charm on that account and perhaps every writer has presented to some
extent a different viewpoint of its beauty and romance. Touraine is
quite unlike any other part of France; its vistas of grayish-green
levels, diversified with slim shimmering poplars and flashes of its
broad lazy rivers, are quite unique and characteristic. And when such a
landscape is dotted with an array of splendid historic palaces such as
Blois, Amboise, Chinon, Chaumont and Chenonceaux, it assuredly reaches
the height of romantic interest. All of these, it is true, are not
within the exact political limits of Touraine, but all are within easy
reach of Tours.

We make Chenonceaux our objective for the afternoon. It lies a little
more than twenty miles east of Tours and the road follows the course of
the Cher almost the whole distance. The palace stands directly above the
river, supported on massive arches which rest on piles in the bed of the
stream. A narrow drawbridge at either end cuts the entrances from the
shore, though these bridges were never intended as a means of defense.
Chenonceaux was in no sense a military fortress--its memories are of
love and jealousy and not of war or assassination. It was built early in
the sixteenth century by a receiver of taxes to King Francis, but so
much of the public funds went into the work that its projector died in
disgrace and his son atoned as best he could by turning the chateau over
to the king.


And here, in the heart of old France, we come upon another memory of
Mary Stuart, for here, with Francis II., she spent her honeymoon--if,
indeed, we may style her short loveless marriage a honeymoon--coming
direct from Amboise, where she had unwillingly witnessed the awful
scenes of the massacre of the Huguenots. What must have been the
reveries of the girl-queen at Chenonceaux! In a foreign land, surrounded
by a wicked, intriguing court, with scenes of bloodshed and death on
every hand and wedded to a hopeless imbecile, foredoomed to early
death--surely even the strange beauty of the river palace could not have
driven these terrible ghosts from her mind.

Chenonceaux has many memories of love and intrigue, for here in 1546
Francis I. and his mistress, the famous Diane of Poitiers, gave a great
hunting party; but the heir-apparent, Prince Henry, soon gained the
affections of the fair Diane and on his accession to the throne
presented her with the chateau, to which she had taken a great fancy.
She it was who built the bridgelike hall connecting the castle with the
south bank of the river and she otherwise improved the palace and
grounds; but on the death of the king, twelve years later, the
queen--the terrible Catherine de Medici--compelled Diane to give up
Chenonceaux and to betake herself to the older and less attractive
Chaumont. The chateau escaped serious injury during the fiery period of
the Revolution, but the insurrectionists compelled the then owner,
Madame Dupin, to surrender her securities, furniture, priceless
paintings and objects of art--the collection of nearly three
centuries--and all were destroyed in a bonfire.

Chenonceaux is now the property of a wealthy Cuban who has spent a
fortune in its restoration and improving the grounds, which accounts for
the trim, new appearance of the place. The great avenue leading from the
public entrance passes through formal gardens brilliant with flowers and
beautified with rare shrubbery and majestic trees. It is a pleasant and
romantic place and the considerateness of the owner in opening it to
visitors for a trifling fee deserves commendation.


Quite different are the memories of Amboise, the vast, acropolislike
pile which towers over the Loire some dozen miles beyond Tours and which
we reach early the next day after a delightful run along the broad
river. We have kept to the north bank and cross the river into the
little village, from which a steep ascent leads to the chateau. The
present structure is largely the result of modern restoration, the huge
round tower being about all that remains of the ancient castle. This
contains a circular inclined plane, up which Emperor Charles V. of the
Holy Roman Empire rode on horseback when he visited Francis I. in 1539,
and it is possible for a medium-sized automobile to make the ascent

Amboise is chiefly remembered for the awful deeds of Catherine de
Medici, who from the balcony overlooking the town watched the massacre,
which she personally directed, of twelve hundred Huguenots. With her
were the young king, Francis II., and his bride, Mary Stuart, who were
compelled to witness the series of horrible executions which were
carried out in the presence of the court. The leaders were hung from the
iron balconies and others were murdered in the courtyard. They met their
fate with stern religious enthusiasm, singing, it is recorded, until
death silenced their voices. The direct cause of the massacre was the
discovery of a plot on the part of the Huguenot leaders to abduct the
young king in order to get him from under the evil influence of his

The chateau contains a tomb that alone should make it the shrine of
innumerable pilgrims, for here is buried that many-sided genius,
Leonardo da Vinci, who died in Amboise in 1519 and whom many authorities
regard as the most remarkable man the human race has yet produced.

But enough of horrors and tombs; we go out on the balcony, where the old
tigress stood in that far-off day, and contemplate the enchanting scene
that lies beneath us. Out beyond the blue river a wide peaceful plain
stretches to the purple hills in the far distance; just below are the
gray roofs of the town and there are glorious vistas up and down the
broad stream. This is the memory we should prefer to carry away with us,
rather than that of the murderous deeds of Catherine de Medici!

On arriving at Blois, twenty miles farther down the river road, thoughts
of belated luncheon first engage our minds and the Hotel de Angleterre
sounds good, looks good, and proves good, indeed. Its dining-room is a
glass-enclosed balcony overhanging the river, which adds a picturesque
view to a very excellent meal. The chateau, a vast quadrangular pile
surrounding a great court, is but a short distance from the hotel. Only
the historic apartments are shown--quite enough, since several hours
would be required to make a complete round of the enormous edifice. The
castle has passed into the hands of the government and is being
carefully restored. It is planned to make it a great museum of art and
history and several rooms already contain an important collection. The
palace was built at different periods, from the thirteenth to the
seventeenth centuries, and was originally a nobleman's home, but later a
residence of the kings of France.


Inside the court our attention is attracted by the elaborate decorations
and carvings of the walls. On one side is a long open gallery supported
by richly wrought columns; but most marvelous is the great winding
stairway projecting from the wall and open on the inner side. Every inch
of this structure--its balconies, its pillars and its huge central
column--is wrought over with beautiful images and strange devices, among
which the salamander of Francis I. is most noticeable. When we have
admired the details of the court to our satisfaction, the guide conducts
us through a labyrinth of gorgeously decorated rooms with many
magnificent fireplaces and mantels but otherwise quite unfurnished. The
apartments of the crafty and cruel Catherine de Medici are especially
noteworthy, one of them--her study--having no fewer than one hundred and
fifty carved panels which conceal secret crypts and hiding-places. These
range from small boxes--evidently for jewels or papers--to a closet
large enough for one to hide in.

The overshadowing tragic event of Blois--there were a host of minor
ones--was the assassination of the Duke of Guise in 1588. Henry III., a
weak and vacillating king, was completely dominated by this powerful
nobleman, whose fanatical religious zeal led him to establish a league
to restore the supremacy of the Catholic religion. The king was forced
to proclaim the duke lieutenant-general of the kingdom and to pledge
himself to extirpate the heretics; but despite his outward compliance
Henry was resolved on vengeance. According to the ideas of the times an
objectionable courtier could best be removed by assassination and this
the king determined upon. He piously ordered two court priests to pray
for the success of his plan and summoned the duke to his presence. Guise
was standing before the fire in the great dining-room and though he
doubtless suspected his royal master's kind intentions toward him,
walked into the next room, where nine of the king's henchmen awaited
him. They offered no immediate violence, but followed him into the
corridor, where they at once drew swords and fell upon him. Even against
such odds the duke, who was a powerful man, made a strong resistance and
though repeatedly stabbed, fought his way to the king's room, where he
fell at the foot of the royal bed. Henry, when assured that his enemy
was really dead, came trembling out of the adjoining room and kicking
the corpse, exclaimed, "How big he is; bigger dead than alive!" The next
morning the duke's brother, the Cardinal of Lorraine, was also murdered
in the castle as he was hastening to obey a summons from the king.

There is little suggestion of such horrors in the polished floors and
gilded walls that surround us today as we hear the Captain translate the
gruesome details from the guide's voluble sentences. We listen only
perfunctorily; it all seems unreasonable and unreal as the sun, breaking
from the clouds that have prevailed much of the day, floods the great
apartments with light. We have not followed this tale of blood and
treachery closely; it is only another reminder that cruelty and
inhumanity were very common a few centuries ago.

There is a minor cathedral in Blois, but the most interesting church is
St. Nicholas, formerly a part of the abbey and dating from 1138. Its
handsome facade with twin towers is the product of recent restoration.
There are also many quaint timbered houses in Blois, dating from the
fifteenth century and later, but we pay little attention to them. I
hardly know why our enthusiasm for old French houses is so limited,
considering how eagerly we sought such bits of antiquity in England.

We pursue the river road the rest of the day, though in places it swings
several miles from the Loire--or does the Loire swing from the road,
which seems arrow-straight everywhere?--and cuts across some lovely
rural country. Fields of grain, just beginning to ripen, predominate and
there are also green meadows and patches of carmine clover. Crimson
poppies and blue cornflowers gleam among the wheat, lending a touch of
brilliant color to the billowy fields.

The village of Beaugency, which we passed about midway between Tours and
Orleans, is one that will arrest the attention of the casual passerby.
It is more reminiscent of the castellated small town of England than one
often finds in France. It is overshadowed by a huge Norman keep with
sheltered, ivy-grown parapets, the sole remaining portion of an
eleventh-century castle. The remainder of the present castle was built
as a stronghold against the English, only to be taken by them shortly
after its completion. The invaders, however, were driven out by the
French army under Joan of Arc in 1429. The bridge at Beaugency is the
oldest on the Loire, having spanned the river since the thirteenth
century. The town has stood several sieges and was the scene of terrible
excesses in the religious wars of the sixteenth century, the abbey
having been burned by the Protestants in 1567.

Towards evening we again come to the river bank and ere long the towers
of Orleans break on our view. Despite its great antiquity the city
appears quite modern, for it has been so rebuilt that but few of its
ancient landmarks remain. Even the cathedral is a modern
restoration--almost in toto--and there is scarcely a complete building
in the town antedating 1500. The main streets are broad and well-paved
and electric trams run on many of them. Our hotel, the Grand Aignan, is
rather old-fashioned and somewhat dingy, but it is clean and comfortable
and its rates are not exorbitant. There is a modern and more fashionable
hotel in the city, but we have learned that second-class inns in cities
of medium size are often good and much easier on one's purse.

Our first thought, when we begin our after-dinner ramble, is that
Orleans should change its name to Jeanne d'Arcville. I know of no other
instance where a city of seventy thousand people is so completely
dominated by a single name. The statues, the streets, the galleries,
museums, churches and shops--all remind one of the immortal Maid who
made her first triumphal entry into Orleans in 1429, when the city was
hard pressed by the English besiegers. Every postcard and souvenir urged
upon the visitor has something to do with the patron saint of the town
and, after a little, one falls in with the spirit of the place,
rejoicing that the memories of Orleans are only of success and triumph
and forgetting Rouen's dark chapter of defeat and death.

In the morning we first go to the cathedral--an ornate and imposing
church, though one that the critics have dealt with rather roughly. It
faces the wide Rue Jeanne d'Arc--again Orleans' charmed name--and it
seems to us that the whole vast structure might well be styled a
memorial to the immortal Maid of France. The facade is remarkable for
its Late-Gothic towers, nearly three hundred feet high, while between
them to the rear rises the central spire, some fifty feet higher. There
are three great portals beneath massive arches, rising perhaps
one-fourth the height of the towers, and above each of these is an
immense rose window. Perhaps the design as a whole is not according to
the best architectural tenets, but the cathedral seems grand to such
unsophisticated critics as ourselves. Being a rather late restoration,
it does not show the wear and tear of the ages, like so many of its
ancient rivals, and perhaps loses a little charm on this account. The
vast vaultlike interior is quite free from obstructions to one's vision
and is lighted by windows of beautifully toned modern glass. These
depict scenes in the life of Joan of Arc, beginning with the appearance
of her heavenly monitors and ending with her martyrdom at the stake. The
designing is of remarkably high order and the color toning is much more
effective than one often finds in modern glass. There are a number of
paintings and images, many of them referring to the career of the now
venerated Maid. The usual gaudy chapels and altars of French cathedrals
are in evidence, though none are especially interesting.

Orleans has several other churches and all pay some tribute to the
heroine of the town. A small part of St. Peter's dates from the ninth
century, one of the few relics of antiquity to be found in Orleans. The
Hotel de Ville, built about 1530, has a beautiful marble figure of Joan
in the court, and an equestrian statue of the Maid is in the Grand Salon
of the building, representing her horse in the act of trampling a
mortally wounded Englishman. Both of these statues are the work of
Princess Marie of Orleans--a scion of the old royal family of France.
The Hotel de Ville also recalls a memory of Mary Stuart; here in 1560
her boy-husband, Francis II., expired in the arms of his wife, and her
career was soon transferred from the French court to its no less
troubled and cruel contemporary in Scotland. The town possesses an
unusually good museum, which includes a large historical collection, and
the gallery contains a number of paintings and sculptures of real merit.
Of course one will wish to see the house where the patron saint of the
town lodged, and this may be found at No. 37 Rue de Tabour. There is
also on the same street the Musee Jeanne d'Arc, which contains a number
of relics and paintings relating to the heroine and her times.

But for all the worship of Joan of Arc in Orleans, she was not a native
of the place and actually spent only a short time within the walls of
the old city. The Maid was born in the little village of Domremy in
Lorraine, some two hundred miles eastward, where her humble birthplace
may still be seen and which we hope to visit when we make our next
incursion into France.


                      ORLEANS TO THE GERMAN BORDER

We have no more delightful run in France than our easy jaunt from
Orleans to Nevers. We still follow the Loire Valley, though the road
only occasionally brings us in sight of the somewhat diminished river.
The distance is but ninety-six miles over the most perfect of roads and
we proceed leisurely, often pausing to admire the landscapes--beautiful
beyond any ability of mine to adequately describe. The roadside
resembles a well-kept lawn; it is bordered by endless rows of majestic
trees and on either hand are fertile fields which show every evidence of
the careful work of the farmer. The silken sheen of bearded wheat and
rye is dotted with crimson poppies and starred with pale-blue
cornflowers. At times the poppies have gained the mastery and burn like
a spot of flame amidst the emerald-green of the fields. Patches of
dark-red clover lend another color variation, and here and there are
dashes of bright yellow or gleaming white of buttercups and daisies.
With such surroundings and on such a clear, exhilarating day our
preconceived ideals of the beauty of Summer France suffer no

Cosne is an old river town now rather dominated by manufactories and
here Pope Pius VII. sojourned when he came to France upon the neighborly
invitation of Napoleon I. He stopped at the Hotel du Cerf, but we try
the Moderne for luncheon, which proves unusually good.

About three o'clock we reach Nevers and a sudden thunder shower
determines us to stop for the night at the Hotel de France. Outside it
is quite unpretending, though queer ornamental panels between the
windows and a roof of moss-green tiles redeem it somewhat from the
commonplace. We have no reason to repent our decision, for the rambling
old inn is scrupulously clean and the service has the personal touch
that indicates the watchful eye of a managing proprietor. We are
somewhat surprised to see a white-clad chef very much in evidence about
the hotel and even taking a lively interest in guests who have suffered
a break-down and are wrestling with their car in the stable-yard garage.
We learn that this chef is the proprietor, and his wife, an English
woman, is the manageress. The combination is an effective one;
English-speaking guests are made very much at home and the excellence of
the meals is sufficient proof of the competence of the proprietor-chef.


Nevers has a cathedral dating in part from the twelfth century, though
the elaborate tower with its host of sculptured prophets, apostles and
saints was built some three hundred years later. The most notable relic
of mediaevalism in the town is the queer old Port du Croux, a
fourteenth-century watch-tower which one time formed part of the
fortifications. It is a noble example of mediaeval defense--a tall
gateway tower with long lancet openings and two pointed turrets flanking
the steep, tile-covered roof. The ducal palace and the Hotel de Ville
are also interesting old-time structures, though neither is of great
historic importance. The history of Nevers is in sharp contrast with the
checkered career of its neighbor, Orleans, being quite uneventful and
prosaic. It is a quiet place to-day, its chief industry being the
potteries, which have been in existence some centuries.

The next day, thirty miles on the road to Autun, we experience our first
break-down in eighteen thousand miles of motoring in Europe--that is, a
break-down that means we must abandon the car for the time. Near the
little village of Tamnay-Chatillon an axle-rod breaks and a new one must
be made before we can proceed. Our objective point, Dijon, is the
nearest place where we will be likely to find facilities for repair and
we resolve to go thither by train. We have been so delayed that
train-time is past and we shall have to pass the night at the village
inn. It is extremely annoying at the time, though in retrospect we are
glad of our experience with at least one very small country road-house
in France. The inn people spare no effort to make us as comfortable as
possible and we have had many worse meals in good-sized cities than is
served to us this evening. Our beds, though apparently clean, are not
very restful, but we are too weary to be excessively critical. The next
morning, leaving the crippled car in the stable-yard, we take the train
for Dijon. The Captain carries the broken axle-rod as a pattern and soon
after our arrival a workman is shaping a new one from a steel bar. And
in this connection I might remark that we found the average French
mechanic quick and intelligent, with almost an intuitive understanding
of a piece of machinery. Our job proves slower than we anticipated; the
work can be done by only one man at a time and it is not completed
before midnight of the following day.

In the meanwhile we have established ourselves at the Grand Hotel de la
Cloche, a pretentious--and, as it proves, a very expensive
stopping-place. We have large, well-furnished rooms which afford an
outlook upon a small park fronting the hotel. Our enforced leisure
allows us considerably more time to look about Dijon than we have been
giving to such towns and we endeavor to make the most of it. The town is
one of the military centers of France, being defended by no fewer than
eight detached forts, and we see numerous companies of soldiers on the

The museum, we are assured, is the greatest "object of interest" in the
city and, indeed, it comes up to the claims made for it. The municipal
art gallery contains possibly the best provincial collection of
paintings in France--an endless array of pictures of priceless value,
representing the greatest names of French art. There is also a splendid
showing of sculpture, occupying five separate rooms. The marble tombs of
Philip the Brave and John the Fearless, old-time dukes of Burgundy, are
wonderful creations. They were originally in the Church of Chartreuse,
destroyed in 1793, when the tombs were removed to the cathedral in a
somewhat damaged condition. They were later placed in the museum and
restored as nearly as possible to their original state. Both have a
multitude of marble statuettes, every one a distinct artistic
study--some representing mourners for the deceased--and each little face
has some peculiar and characteristic expression of grief. The strong
contrast of white and black marbles is relieved by judicious gilding
and, altogether, we count these the most elaborate and artistic
mediaeval tombs we have seen, if we except the Percy monument at Beverly
in England. The museum also has an important archaeological collection,
including a number of historical relics found in the vicinity, for the
city dates back to Roman times. The showing of coins, gems, vases,
ivory, cabinets and jewelry would do credit to any metropolitan museum.
And all this in a town of but seventy-five thousand people--which shows
how far the French municipalities have advanced in such matters. Dijon
is no exception in this regard, though other cities of the class may not
quite equal this collection, which I have described in merest outline.

Dijon has several churches of the first order, though none of them has
any notable distinguishing feature. The Cathedral of St. Benigne is the
oldest, dating in its present form from about 1280, though there are
portions which go back still farther. It was originally built as an
abbey church, but the remainder of the abbatial buildings have
disappeared. St. Michael's Church is some four hundred years later than
the cathedral, and has, according to the guide-books, a Renaissance
facade, though it seems to us to be better described as a Moorish
adaptation of the Gothic style. At any rate, it is an inartistic and
unattractive structure and illustrates the poor results often attained
in too great an effort after the unusual. Notre Dame is about the same
date as the cathedral, though it has been so extensively restored as to
have quite a new appearance. Its most remarkable feature is its queer
statuettes--nearly a hundred little figures contorted into endless
expressions and attitudes--which serve as gargoyles. The churches of
Dijon are not particularly noteworthy for their interiors and none has
especially good windows. Our extended sojourn in the city enables us to
visit a number of shops, for which we have heretofore found little time.
These are well-stocked and attractive and quite in keeping with a city
of the size of Dijon. According to Herr Baedeker, the town is famous
"for wine and corn, and its mustard and gingerbread enjoy a wide

The Captain and myself take an early train for Tamnay-Chatillon and have
the satisfaction of finding the new axle-rod a perfect fit. We enjoy the
open car and the fine road more than ever after our enforced experience
with the railway train. The country between Tamnay and Dijon is rolling
and the road often winds up or down a great hill for two or three miles
at a stretch, always with even and well-engineered gradients that insure
an easy climb or a long exhilarating coast. There are many glorious
panoramas from the hill-crests--wide reaches of hill and valley, with
groves and vineyards and red-tiled villages nestling in wooded vales or
lying on the sunny slopes. Most of the towns remain unknown to us by
name, but the Captain points out Chateau Chinon clinging to a rather
steep hillside and overshadowed by the vast ruined castle which once
defended it. A portion of the old wall with three watch-towers still
stands--the whole effect being very grim and ancient. Near the town of
Pommard the hills are literally "vine-clad,"--vineyards everywhere
running up to the very edge of the town.

The Hotel St. Louis et de la Poste at Autun does not present a very
attractive exterior, but it proves a pleasant surprise and we are hungry
enough to do justice to an excellent luncheon, having breakfasted in
Dijon at five o'clock. Autun has an unusual cathedral--"a curious
building of the transition period"--some parts of which go back as far
as the tenth century. The beautiful Gothic spire--the first object to
greet our eyes when approaching the town--was built about 1470. Portions
of the old fortifications still remain. St. Andrew's Gate, partly a
restoration, is an imposing portal pierced by four archways and forms
one of the main entrances. There is also the usual museum and Hotel de
Ville to be found in all enterprising provincial towns of France.

Beyond Autun the character of the country changes again; we come into a
less prosperous section, intersected by stone fences which cut the rocky
hillsides into small irregular fields. We pass an occasional
bare-looking village and one or two ruined chateaus and we remark on the
scarcity of ruins in France, so far as we have seen it, as compared with
England. A more fertile and thriving country surrounds Dijon, which we
reach in the late afternoon.

We have had quite enough of Dijon, but we shall remain until morning; an
early start should carry us well toward the German frontier before
night. We find some terribly rough roads to Gray and Vesoul--macadam
which has begun to disintegrate. The country grows quite hilly and
while, in the words of the old hymn, "every prospect pleases," we are
indeed tempted to add that "only man is vile." For the filthiness of
some of the villages and people can only be designated as unspeakable;
if I should describe in plain language the conditions we behold, my book
might be excluded from the mails! The houses of these miserable little
hamlets stretch in single file along both sides of the broad highway. In
one end of the house lives the family and in the other the domestic
animals--pigs, cows and donkeys. Along the road on each side the
muck-piles are almost continuous and reach to the windows of the
cottages. Recent rains have flooded the streets with seepage, which
covers the road to a depth of two or three inches, and the odors may be
imagined--if one feels adequate to such a task. The muck is drained into
pools and cisterns from which huge wooden or iron pumps tower above the
street. By means of these the malodorous liquid is elevated into
wagon-tanks to be hauled away to the fields. And this work is usually
done by the women! In fact, women are accorded equal privileges with a
vengeance in this part of rural France--they outnumber the men in the
fields and no occupation appears too heavy or degraded for them to
engage in. We see many of the older ones herding domestic animals--or
even geese and ducks--by the roadside. Sometimes it is only a single
animal--a cow, donkey, goat or pig--that engages the old crone, who is
usually knitting as well. The pigs, no doubt because of their headstrong
proclivities, are usually confined by a cord held by their keepers, and
with one of these we have an amusing adventure. The pig becomes unruly,
heading straight for our car, and only a vigorous application of the
brakes prevents disaster to the obstreperous brute. But the guardian of
his hogship--who has been hauled around pretty roughly while hanging to
the cord--is in a towering rage and screams no end of scathing language
at us. "You, too, are pigs," is one of her compliments which the Captain
translates, and he says it is just as well to let some of her remarks
stand in the original!

As we approach Remiremont, where we propose to stop for the night, we
enter the great range of hills which form the boundary between France
and Germany and which afford many fine vistas. Endless pine forests
clothe the hillsides and deep narrow valleys slope away from the road
which winds upward along the edges of the hills. Remiremont is a
pleasant old frontier town lying along the Moselle River at the base of
a fortified hill two thousand feet in height. It is cleaner than the
average French town of ten thousand and clear streams of mountain water
run alongside many of its streets. The Hotel du Cheval de Bronze seems a
solid, comfortable old inn and we turn into the courtyard for our
nightly stop. The courtyard immediately adjoins the hotel apartments on
the rear and is not entirely free from objectionable odors--our only
complaint against the Cheval de Bronze. Our rooms front on the street,
the noise being decidedly preferable to the assortment of smells in the
rear. The town has nothing to detain one, and is rather unattractive,
despite its pleasing appearance from a distance. On the main street near
our hotel are the arcades, which have a considerable resemblance to the
famous rows of Chester.

We are awakened early in the morning by the tramp of a large company of
soldiers along the street, for Remiremont, being so near the frontier,
is heavily garrisoned. These French soldiers we have seen everywhere, in
the towns and on the roads, enough of them to remind us that the country
is really a vast military camp. They are rather undersized, as a rule,
and their attire is often slouchy and worse for wear. Their bearing
seems to us anything but soldierly as they shuffle along the streets.
Perhaps we remember this the more because of the contrast we see in
Germany a little later. A good authority, however, tells us that the
French army is in a fine state of preparedness and would give a good
account of itself if called into action.

We are early away from Remiremont on a fine road winding among the
pine-clad hills. Some sixteen miles out of the town we find a splendid
hotel at Gerardmer on a beautiful little lake of the same name in the
Vosges Forest, where we should no doubt have had quite different service
from the Cheval de Bronze. We have no regrets, however, since Remiremont
is worth seeing as a typical small frontier town. At Gerardmer we begin
the long climb over the mountain pass which crosses the German border;
there are several miles of the ascent and in some places the grades are
steep enough to seriously heat the motor. We stop many times on the way
and there is a clear little stream by the roadside from which we
replenish the water in the heated engine. The air grows cooler and more
bracing as we ascend and though it is a fine June day, we see banks of
snow along the road. On either side are great pine trees, through which
we catch occasional glimpses of wooded hills and verdant valleys lying
far beneath us. Despite the cool air, flowers bloom along the road and
the ascent, though rather strenuous, is a delightful one.

At the summit we come to the customs offices of the two countries, a few
yards apart. Here we bid farewell to France and slip across the border
into the Fatherland, as its natives so love to call it. A wonderful old
official, who seems to embody all the dignity and power of the empire he
serves, comes out of the customs house. His flowing gray beard is a full
yard long and the stem of his mighty porcelain pipe is still longer. He
is clad in a faultless uniform and wears a military cap bespangled with
appropriate emblems--altogether, a marvel of that official glory in
which the Germans so delight. His functions, however, do not correspond
with his personal splendor, for he only officially countersigns our
Royal Automobile Club passport, delivers us a pair of number plates and,
lastly, collects a fee of some fifteen marks. He gives us a certificate
showing that we are now entitled to travel the highways of the empire
for two weeks, and should we remain longer we shall have to pay an
additional fee on leaving the country. The Captain waves an approved
military adieu, to which the official solemnly responds and we set out
in search of adventure in the land of the Kaiser.


                         COLMAR TO OBERAMMERGAU

Had we crossed a sea instead of an imaginary dividing line we could
hardly have found a more abrupt change in the characteristics of people
and country than we discover when we descend into the broad green valley
of the Rhine. We have a series of fine views as we glide down the easy
grades and around the sweeping curves of the splendid road that leads
from the crest to the wide plain along the river--glimpses of towns and
villages lying far beneath, beyond long stretches of wooded hills. On
our way we meet peasants driving teams of huge horses hitched to heavy
logging wagons. The horses go into a panic at the sight of the car and
the drivers seem even more panicky than the brutes; it is quite apparent
that the motor is not so common in Germany as in England and France.

The province of Alsace, by which we enter Germany, was held by France
from the time of Napoleon until 1871, but it never entirely lost its
German peculiarities during the French occupation. Its villages and
farmhouses are distinctly Teutonic, though the larger towns show more
traces of French influence. Colmar, some twenty miles from the border,
is the first city--a place of about forty thousand people and
interesting to Americans as the birthplace of the sculptor, Bartholdi,
who designed the Statue of Liberty in New York Harbor. It is a
substantially built town with an enormous Gothic church and its museum
has a famous collection of pictures by early German masters.

A few miles from Colmar we come to the Rhine, so famed in German song
and story, a green, rushing flood that seems momentarily to threaten the
destruction of the pontoon bridge which bears us across. Beyond the
river the level but poorly surfaced road leads to Freiburg, a handsome
city of about seventy-five thousand people. It is a noted manufacturing
town and has an ancient university with about two thousand students. Its
cathedral is one of the finest Gothic structures in Germany, the great
tower, three hundred and eighty feet in height, being the earliest and
most perfect of its kind. The windows of fourteenth-century glass are
particularly fine and there are many remarkable paintings of a little
later date. The city has other important churches and many beautiful
public buildings and monuments. Indeed, Freiburg is a good example of
the neatness, cleanliness and civic pride that prevails in most of the
larger German cities. It has many excellent hotels and we have a
well-served luncheon at the Victoria. We should stop for the day at
Freiburg were it not for our unexpected delay at Dijon; we must hasten
if we are to reach Oberammergau in time for our reservations. In the
three remaining daylight hours we make a swift run to Tuttlingen, some
sixty miles eastward, passing several small villages and two good-sized
towns, Neustadt and Donaueschingen, on the way. The latter is near the
head waters of the Danube, and from here we follow the river to
Tuttlingen. We pass through a beautifully wooded country and several
inns along the way indicate that this section is a frequented pleasure
resort. There are many charming panoramas from the road, which in places
swings around the hillsides some distance above the river.

Had we known the fate in store for us at Tuttlingen, we should surely
have stopped at one of the hotels which we hastily passed in our dash
for that town. But we reach it just at dusk--a place of about fifteen
thousand people--and turn in rather dubiously at the unattractive Post
Hotel. If the Post is a fair sample of the country inns of Germany, the
tourist should keep clear of country inns when possible. On entering we
meet an assortment of odors not especially conducive to good appetite
for the evening meal, and this proves of the kind that requires a good
appetite. We are hungry, but not hungry enough to eat the Post's fare
with anything like relish and we are haunted by considerable misgivings
about the little we do consume. The Post, however, does not lack
patronage, though it seems to come mainly from German commercial men who
are seeking trade in the thriving town.

We are away early in the morning, following a rough, neglected road some
dozen miles to Ludwigshaven at the head of Lake Constance, or the Boden
See, as the Germans style it. A new highway leading down to the lake
shore is not yet open, though nearly ready, and we descend over a
temporary road which winds among tree stumps and drops down twenty per
cent grades for a couple of miles. We are thankful that we have only the
descent to make; I doubt whether our forty-horse engine would ever have
pulled us up the "bank," as a Yorkshire man would describe it.

But having reached the level of the lake, we find a splendid road
closely following the shore for forty miles and affording views of some
of the finest and most famous scenery in Europe. In all our journeyings
we have had few more glorious runs. The clear balmy June day floods
everything with light and color. The lake lies still and blue as the
heavens above, and beyond its shining expanse rise the snow-capped forms
of the Swiss Alps, their rugged ranks standing sharply against the
silvery horizon. At their feet stretches the green line of the shore and
above it the dense shadows of the pines that cover the slopes to the
snow line. It is a scene of inspiring beauty that one sees to best
advantage from the open road. Near at hand green fields stretch to the
hills, no great distance away, and the belated fruit-tree blossoms load
the air with perfume. Hay-making is in progress in the little
fields--women swing the scythes or handle the rakes and pitchforks while
staid old cows draw the heavy, awkward carts. There are several pleasant
little towns along the shore, rather neater and cleaner than the average
German village, though even these are not free from occasional touches
of filthiness. Near the center of the lake is Friedrichshafen, a popular
resort with numerous hotels. There is a beautiful drive along the lake,
bordered with shrubs and trees, and fronting on this is the
comfortable-looking Deutsches Haus, surrounded by gardens which extend
to the shore. We remember the Deutsches Haus particularly, since on its
glass-enclosed veranda we are served with an excellent luncheon. As we
resume our journey, feeling at peace with the world, and open up a
little on the smooth lakeside road, the Captain exclaims:

"If I had all the money I could possibly want, do you know what I'd do?
I'd just buy a motor, don't you know, and do nothing on earth but tour
about Europe!"

And we all agree that under such conditions and on such a day his
proposed vocation seems an ideal one.

Friedrichshafen, I should have said, was the home of Count Zeppelin of
airship fame, and as we passed through the town his immense craft was
being made ready for an experimental trip. It was then attracting much
attention in Germany and was the precourser of the only line of
commercial airships now in existence.

Lindau, a small resort built on an island about three hundred yards from
the shore, marks the point of our departure from Lake Constance. We
enter the town over a narrow causeway which connects it with the main
road, but find little to detain us. We climb the steep winding road
leading out of the valley and for the remainder of the day our course
wends among the foothills of the Bavarian Alps. It proves a delightful
run; we witness constantly changing displays of color and glorious
effects of light and shadow. Thunder storms are raging in the mountains
and at intervals they sweep down and envelop our road in a dash of
summer rain. Above us tower the majestic Alps; in places the dazzling
whiteness of the snow still lies against the barren rocks or amidst the
dense green of the pines, while above the summits roll blue-gray cumulus
clouds glowing with vivid lightning or brilliant with occasional bursts
of sunshine. Near at hand stretch green meadows of the foothills,
variegated with great splashes of blue or yellow flowers as though some
giant painter had swept his brush across the landscape. The effect is
shown with striking fidelity in the picture by the late John MacWhirter
R. A. which I have reproduced, though it is quite impossible on so small
a scale to give an adequate idea of the original canvas--much less of
the enchanting scene itself.

Among the foothills and often well up the mountainsides are the
characteristic chalets of Tyrol and an occasional ruined castle crowns
some seemingly inaccessible rock. We pass several quaint little towns
and many isolated houses, all very different from any we have seen
elsewhere. The houses are mostly of plaster and often ornamented with
queer designs and pictures in brilliant colors. The people are
picturesque, too; the women and girls dress in the peculiar costume of
the country; the men wear knitted jackets and knee pants with silver
buckles and their peaked hats are often decorated with a feather or two.

Our road averages fair, though a few short stretches are desperately
bad--this unevenness we have noted in German roads generally. In one
place where the rain has been especially heavy we plunge through a
veritable quagmire, and we find spots so rough and stony as to make very
uncomfortable going. We finally strike the fine highway which follows
the River Lech and brings us into the mountain town of Fussen. It is a
snug little place of some five thousand people, nestling in a narrow
valley through which rushes a swift, emerald-green river. The
Bayerischer-Hof proves a pleasant surprise; one of the cleanest,
brightest and best-conducted inns we have found anywhere. Our large,
well-lighted rooms afford a magnificent view of the snow-capped
mountains, which seem only a little distance away. The landlord, a
fine-looking, full-bearded native who speaks English fluently, gives the
touch of personal attention that one so much appreciates in the often
monotonous round of hotel life. To the rear of the hotel is a
beer-garden where brilliant lights and good music in the evening attract
the guests and townspeople in considerable numbers. Several other
American motor parties stop at the hotel and we especially notice one
French car because it carries nine people--and it is not a large car,
either! The Bayerischer-Hof is first-class in every particular, and we
find when we come to depart that the charges are first-class, too. The
Captain is exasperated when we are asked sixty cents per gallon for
"benzin" and says we will chance doing better on the way--a decision
which, as it happens, causes us no little grief and some expense.

Fussen has an impressive Gothic castle--a vast, turreted, towered,
battlemented affair with gray walls and red-tiled roof which looms over
the town from the slope above the river. I fear, though, that the castle
is a good deal of a sham, for there are spots where the stucco has
fallen from the walls, revealing wooden lath beneath, and while in
Fussen they call it a "thirteenth-century" building, Baedeker gives its
date as two or three hundred years later. It was never intended as a
defensive structure, being originally built as the residence of the
Bishop of Augsburg. It is now occupied by the district court and the
interior is hardly worth a visit.

 [Illustration: CASTLE AT FUSSEN]

Oberammergau lies over the mountain to the east of Fussen, scarcely ten
miles away in a direct line, but to reach it we are compelled to go by
the way of Schongau, about four times as far. We pursue a narrow,
sinuous mountain road, very muddy in places. We have been warned of one
exceptionally bad hill--a twenty-five per cent grade, according to the
Royal Automobile Club itinerary--but we give the matter little thought.
It proves a straight incline of half a mile and about midway the sharp
ascent our motor gasps and comes to a sudden stop. We soon ascertain
that the angle is too great for the gasoline to flow from the nearly
empty tank, and we regret the Captain's economy at Fussen. A number of
peasants gather about us to stare at our predicament, but they show
nothing of the amusement that an American crowd would find in such a
situation. A woman engages the Captain in conversation and informs us
that she is the owner of a good team of horses, which will be the best
solution of our difficulties. "Wie viel?" Seventy-five marks, or about
eighteen dollars, looks right to her and she sticks to her price, too.
Her only response to the Captain's indignant protests is that she keeps
a road-house at the top of the hill, where he can find her if he decides
we need her services. And she departs in the lordly manner of one who
has delivered an ultimatum from which there is no appeal. A peasant
tells us that the woman makes a good income fleecing stranded motorists
and that the German automobile clubs have published warnings against
her. He says that a farmer near by will help us out for the modest sum
of ten marks and offers to bring him to the scene; he also consoles us
by telling us that five cars besides our own have stalled on the hill
during the day. The farmer arrives before long with a spanking big team,
which gives us the needed lift, and the grade soon permits the motor to
get in its work.

We reach Oberammergau about two o'clock, only to find another instance
where the Captain's economical tendency has worked to our disadvantage.
He had declined to pay the price asked by Cook's agency in London for
reservation of rooms and seats for the Passion Play and had arranged for
these with a German firm, Shenker & Co. at Freiburg. On inquiring at the
office of the concern in the village we find no record of our
reservations and no tickets to be had. "Shenker is surely a 'rotter,'"
says the Captain, immensely disgusted, and it requires no small effort
to find quarters, but we at last secure tiny rooms in a peasant's
cottage in the outskirts of the village. Tickets we finally obtain by an
earnest appeal at Cook's offices, though at considerable premium.

Our quarters are almost primitive in their plainness, but they are
tolerably clean; the meals, served in a large dining-hall not far away,
are only fair. The people of Oberammergau, our landlord says, face a
difficult problem in caring for the Passion Play crowds. These come but
once in ten years and during the intervening time visitors to the town
are comparatively few. Yet the villagers must care for the great throngs
of play years, though many apartments and lodging-houses must stand
empty during the interval and the only wonder is that charges are so

The regular population of Oberammergau is less than two thousand, though
during the play it presents the appearance of a much larger place. The
houses are nearly all of the prevailing Bavarian style, with wide,
overhanging eaves and white walls often decorated with brightly colored
frescoes. Through the center of the village rushes the Ammer, a clear,
swift mountain stream which sometimes works havoc when flooded. The
church is modern, but its Moorish tower and rococo decorations do not
impress us as especially harmonious and there is little artistic or
pleasing in the angular lines of the new theatre. The shops keep open on
every day of the week, including Sunday, until nearly midnight. These
are filled with carvings, pottery, postcards and endless trinkets for
the souvenir-seeking tourist and perhaps yield more profit to the town
than the play itself. There are several good-sized inns, but one has no
chance of lodging in one of them unless quarters have been engaged
months in advance--not very practicable when coming by motor.

 [Illustration: OBERAMMERGAU]

One will best appreciate the magnificent situation of the village from a
vantage-point on one of the mountains which encompass the wide green
valley on every side. On the loftiest crag of all gleams a tall white
cross--surely a fit emblem to first greet the stranger who comes to
Oberammergau. In the center of the vale is the village, the clean
white-walled houses grouped irregularly about the huge church, which
forms the social center of the place. The dense green of the trees, the
brighter green of the window-shutters, the red and gray-tile roofs and
the swift river cleaving its way through the town, afford a pleasing
variety of color to complete the picture. The surrounding green pastures
with the herds of cattle are the property of the villagers--nearly every
family of this thrifty community is a landholder. The scene is a quiet,
peaceful one, such as suits the character of the people who inhabit this
lovely vale.

And these same villagers, simple and unpretentious as they are, will
hardly fail to favorably impress the stranger. The Tyrolese costume is
everywhere in evidence and there is a large predominance of full-bearded
men, for the play-actors are not allowed to resort to wigs and false
whiskers. They exhibit the peculiarities of the Swiss rather than the
Germans and their manners and customs are simple and democratic in the
extreme. While the head of the community is nominally the burgomaster,
the real government is vested in the householders. The freedom from envy
and strife is indeed remarkable; quarrels are unknown and very few of
the inhabitants are so selfish as to seek for honor or wealth. The
greatest distinction that can come to any of them is an important part
in the play; yet there is never any contention or bitterness over the
allotments. It would be hard to find elsewhere a community more
seriously happy, more healthful or morally better than Oberammergau.

I shall not write at length of the world-famous play. It has been so
well and widely described that I could add but little new. It is
interesting as the sole survival of a vast number of mediaeval miracle
plays, though it has cast off the coarser features and progressed into a
really artistic production. I must first of all plead my own ignorance
of the true spirit and marvelous beauty of the play ere I saw it. I
thought it the crude production of a community of ignorant peasants who
were shrewd enough to turn their religion into a money-making scheme and
I freely declared that I would scarcely cross the street to witness it.
But when the great chorus of three hundred singers appeared in the
prelude that glorious Sunday morning, I began to realize how mistaken I
had been. And as the play progressed I was more and more impressed with
its solemn sincerity, its artistic staging and its studied harmony of
coloring. Indeed, in the last named particular it brought vividly to
mind the rich yet subdued tones of Raphael and Michael Angelo, and the
effect of the rare old tapestries one occasionally finds in the museums.
The tableaux in many cases closely followed some famous picture--as
Leonardo DaVinci's "Last Supper" or Rubens' "Descent from the
Cross,"--all perfectly carried out in coloring and spirit. The costumes
were rich and carefully studied, giving doubtless a true picture of the
times of Christ. The acting was the perfection of naturalness and the
crude and ridiculous features of the early miracle plays--and, not so
very long ago, of the Passion Play itself--have been gradually dropped
until scarce a trace of them remains. The devil no longer serves the
purpose of the clown, having altogether disappeared; and even the
tableau of Jonah and the whale, though given in the printed programs,
was omitted, evidently from a sense of its ridiculousness. I found
myself strangely affected by the simple story of the play. One indeed
might imagine that he saw a real bit of the ancient world were it not
for the great steel arches bending above him and the telephone wires
stretching across the blue sky over the stage.

But I think the best proof of the real human interest of the play is
that it held the undivided attention of five thousand spectators for
eight long hours on a spring day whose perfect beauty was a strong lure
to the open sky. And it did this not only for one day but for weeks,
later in the summer requiring an almost continuous daily performance.
And, having seen it once, I have no doubt the greater number of
spectators would gladly witness it again, for so great a work of art
cannot be grasped from a single performance.

Of course Oberammergau has not escaped the critics, but I fancy the
majority of them are, like myself before our visit to the town, quite
ignorant of the facts as well as the true spirit of the people. The
commonest charge is that the play is a money-making scheme on the part
of the promoters, but the fact is that the people are poor and remain
poor. The actual profits from the play are not large and these are
devoted to some public work, as the new theatre, the hospital and the
good cause of public roads. The salaries paid the players are merely
nominal, in no case exceeding a few hundred marks. The only source of
private profit comes from the sale of souvenirs and the entertaining of
visitors, but this can not be great, considering that the harvest comes
only once in a decade. The play is "commercialized" only to the extent
of placing it on a paying basis and if this were not the case there
could be no performance. The very fear of this charge kept the villagers
up to 1910 from placing their tickets and reservations in the hands of
Cook and other tourist agencies, though they were finally persuaded to
yield in this as an accommodation to the public. The most effective
answer to the assertion that the chief end of the play is money-making
may be found in the constant refusal of the villagers to produce it
elsewhere than in Oberammergau. Offers of fabulous sums from promoters
in England and the United States for the production of the play in the
large centers of these countries have been steadily refused, and the
actors have pursued their humble avocations in their quiet little town
quite content with their meager earnings. Nor have they yielded to the
temptation to give the play oftener, though it would be immensely
profitable if presented every year or even every alternate year.

We leave the little mountain-girdled valley with a new conception of its
Passion Play and its unique, happy people. The majestic spectacle we
have witnessed during our stay will linger with us so long as life shall
last and it can never be otherwise than a pleasant and inspiring memory.


                         BAVARIA AND THE RHINE

Munich is sixty miles north of Oberammergau and the road is better than
the average of German highways. For some distance out of the village we
pursue a winding course among the mountains, which affords some glorious
vistas of wooded vales and snow-capped Alps while we descend to the wide
plain surrounding Munich. We pass through several sleepy-looking
villages, though they prove sufficiently wide-awake to collect a toll of
two or three marks for the privilege of traversing their streets. A
well-surfaced highway bordered by trees leads us into the broad streets
of Munich, where we repair to the Continental Hotel.

We remain here several days and have the opportunity of closely
observing the Bavarian capital. We unhesitatingly pronounce it the
cleanest, most artistic and most substantial city we have ever seen. A
number of drives through the main streets and environs reveal little in
the nature of slums; even the poorest quarters of the city are solidly
built and clean, and next to its beautiful buildings and artistic
monuments the cleanliness of Munich seems to us most noteworthy. Perhaps
the ladies should be given credit for this--not the members of the
women's clubs, who are often supposed to influence civic affairs for the
better, but the old women who do the sweeping and scrubbing of the
streets, for we see them in every part of the city. This spick-and-span
cleanliness of the larger German cities forms a sharp contrast to the
filth and squalor of the villages, some of which are even worse than
anything we saw in France--but of this more anon.

Munich has a population of more than a half million, and having been
built within the last century, is essentially modern. It has many
notable public buildings, mainly in the German Gothic style--the
Rathhaus, with its queer clock which sets a number of life-size
automatons in motion every time it strikes the hour, being the most
familiar to tourists. The Royal Palace and the National Theatre are
splendid structures and the latter is famous for grand opera, in which
the Germans take great delight. Munich ranks as an important art
capital, having several galleries and museums, among which the Bavarian
National and German Museum are the most notable. There are numerous
public gardens and parks, all kept with the trim neatness that
characterizes the entire city. And one must not forget the beer-gardens,
which play so large a part in German life; the whole population
frequents these open-air drinking-places, where beer and other
refreshments are served at small tables underneath the trees. The best
feature of these is the excellent music which is an invariable
accompaniment and Munich is famous for its musicians. The most
proficient of these think it no detraction to perform in the
beer-gardens, which are attended by the best people of all classes;
students, artists, professors, business and military men make up a large
proportion of the patrons of these resorts. The gardens are conducted by
the big brewers and Munich beer is famous the world over. There is
comparatively little manufacturing in the city, though we noted one
exceptionally large iron foundry and a great engine works.

During our stay we took occasion to have our car overhauled at a public
garage and were impressed with the intelligence and efficiency of the
German mechanics. They were usually large, fine-looking fellows, always
good-natured and accommodating. The wages paid them are quite small as
compared with those of American mechanics, being about one-third as
much. At four o'clock in the afternoon everything stops for a quarter of
an hour while the workmen indulge in a pot of beer and a slice or two of
black bread. We saw this in a large foundry, where several hundred men
were employed and were told that the custom is universal.

The Captain, while admitting that most of the German workmen were very
good fellows, often treated them in a supercilious manner that I fear
sometimes worked against our interests. In fact, the Captain's dislike
of everything German was decidedly pronounced and the sight of a company
of soldiers usually put him in an ill humor. "I'll have to take a crack
at those fellows some time, myself," he would say, in the firm
conviction that war between England and Germany was inevitable.

He was not put in a better state of feeling towards our Teutonic hosts
when he came to pay the bill at the Continental. Through carelessness
unusual on his part, he neglected to have an iron-clad understanding
when he engaged accommodations and we had to suffer in consequence. He
made a vigorous protest without appreciable effect on the suave clerk,
who assured us that the rates of the Continental were quite like the
laws of the Medes and the Persians. They were high--yes; but only
persons of quality were received. Indeed, a princess and a baroness were
among the guests at that moment and he hinted that many applicants were
turned away because their appearance did not meet the requirements of
the Continental. "We just look them over," said the clerk, "and if we
don't like them we tell them we are full." All of which the Captain
translated to us, though I should judge from his vehemence in replying
to the clerk that he used some language which he did not repeat--perhaps
it had no equivalent in English. But it was all to no purpose; we paid
the bill and were free to get whatever comfort we could from the
reflection that we had been fellow-guests with a princess. "I saw her
one day," said the Captain. "She was smoking a cigarette in the parlor
and I offered her one of mine, which she declined, though she talked
with me very civilly for a few minutes."

We start rather late in the day with Ulm and Stuttgart as objective
points. The weather is fickle and the numerous villages through which we
pass would be disgusting enough in the sunshine, but they fairly reek in
the drizzling rain. The streets are inches deep in filth and we drive
slowly to avoid plastering the car--though the odors would induce us to
hasten if it were possible. Along the highroad stretch the low thatched
cottages; each one is half stable and the refuse is often piled above
the small windows. We dare not think of our plight if a tire should
burst as we drive gingerly along, but we fortunately escape such
disaster. Everywhere in these villages we see groups of sturdy
children--"race suicide" does not trouble Germany, nor does the
frightfully insanitary conditions of their homes seem to have affected
them adversely. On the contrary, they are fat, healthy-looking rascals
who--the Captain declares--scream insulting epithets at us. On all
sides, despite the rather inclement weather, we see women in the fields,
pulling weeds or using heavy, mattock-shaped hoes. We even see old
crones breaking rock for road-work and others engaged in hauling muck
from the villages to the fields. Men are more seldom seen at work--what
their occupation is we can only surmise. They cannot be caring for the
children, all of whom seem to be running the streets. Possibly they are
washing the dishes. But, facetiousness aside, it is probable that the
millions of young men who are compelled to do army service for three
years leave more work for the women at home. The railway traveler in
Germany sees little of the conditions I have described in these smaller
villages; few of them are on the railroad and the larger towns and
tourist centers are usually cleanly.

The dominating feature of Ulm is the cathedral, whose vast bulk looms
over the gray roofs of the houses crowding closely around it. It is the
second largest church in Germany and has one of the finest organs in
existence. The great central spire is the loftiest Gothic structure in
the world, rising to a height of five hundred and twenty-eight feet,
which overtops even Cologne. It has rather a new appearance, as a
complete restoration was finished only a few years ago. The cathedral
has made Ulm a tourist center and this no doubt accounts for the
numerous hotels of the town. We have a very satisfactory luncheon at the
Munster, though the charge startles us a little. We cannot help thinking
that some of these inns have a special schedule for the man with an
automobile--rating him as an American millionaire, who, according to the
popular notion in Germany, is endowed with more money than brains.

 [Illustration: ULM AND THE CATHEDRAL]

From Ulm we pursue a poor road along the River Fils to Stuttgart, making
slow progress through the numerous villages. The streets are thronged
with children who delight in worrying our driver by standing in the road
until we are nearly upon them. The Captain often addresses vigorous
language to the provoking urchins, only to be answered by an epithet or
a grimace.

Stuttgart is a clean, well-built city with large commercial enterprises.
We see several American flags floating from buildings, for many
Stuttgart concerns have branches in the States. It is a famous
publishing center and its interest in books is evidenced by its splendid
library, which contains more than a half million volumes. Among these is
a remarkable collection of bibles, representing eight thousand editions
in over one hundred languages. There are the usual museums and galleries
to be found in a German city of a quarter of a million people and many
fine monuments and memorials grace the streets and parks. The population
is largely Protestant, which probably accounts for the absence of a
church of the first magnitude. We stop at the old-fashioned Marquardt
Hotel, which proves very good and moderate in rates.

The next day we cover one hundred and sixty miles of indifferent road to
Frankfort, going by the way of Karlsruhe, Heidelberg and Darmstadt. We
come across a few stretches of modern macadam, but these aggregate an
insignificant proportion of the distance. The villages exhibit the same
unattractive characteristics of those we passed yesterday. Many have
ancient cobblestone pavements full of chuck-holes; in others the streets
are muddy and filthy beyond description. It is Sunday and the people are
in their best attire; work is suspended everywhere--quite the opposite
of what we saw in France. The country along our route is level and
devoid of interest. From Karlsruhe we follow the course of the Rhine,
though at some distance from the river itself. We pass through several
forests which the government carefully conserves--in favorable contrast
with our reckless and wasteful destruction of trees in America. There is
much productive land along our way and the fields of wheat and rye are
as fine as we have ever seen. But for all this the country lacks the
trim, parklike beauty of England and the sleek prosperity and bright
color of France.

Heidelberg, thirty miles north of Karlsruhe, is a town of nearly fifty
thousand people. The university, the oldest and most famous school in
the empire, is not so large as many in America, having but sixteen
hundred students in all departments. It has, however, an imposing array
of buildings, some of these dating from the fourteenth century, when the
school was founded. The town is picturesquely situated on the Neckar,
which is crossed by a high bridge borne on massive arches. There is a
fine view down the river from this bridge and one which we pause to
contemplate. From the bridge we also get a good view of the town and the
ancient castle which dominates the place from a lofty hill. Ruined
castles, we have found, are as rare in Germany, outside the Rhine
region, as they are common in England.

We reach Frankfort at dusk, more weary than we have been in many a day.
The roads have been as trying as any we have traversed in Europe for a
like distance, and these, with the cobblestone pavements, have been
responsible for an unusual amount of tire trouble, which has not tended
to alleviate our weariness or improve our tempers. The Carlton Hotel
looks good and proves quite as good as it looks. It is the newest hotel
in the city, having been opened within a year by the well-known
Ritz-Carlton Corporation. In construction, equipment and service it is
up to the highest Continental standard--with prices to correspond.

One would require several days to visit the points of interest in
Frankfort, but our plans do not admit of much leisurely sightseeing. It
is one of the oldest of German cities, its records running back to the
time of Charlemagne in 793. We shall have to content ourselves with a
drive about the principal streets and an outside view of the most
important buildings. Chief among these is the magnificent opera house,
the railway station--said to be the finest on the Continent--the
library, the Stadel Museum, the "Schauspielhaus," or new theatre, and
the municipal buildings. The Cathedral of St. Bartholemew is the oldest
church, dating from 1235, but architecturally it does not rank with
Cologne or Ulm. The interior has a number of important paintings and
frescoes. St. Peter's, the principal Protestant church, is of the modern
Renaissance style with an ornate tower two hundred and fifty feet in

There is one shrine in Frankfort that probably appeals to a greater
number of tourists than any of the monumental buildings we have
named--the plain old house where the poet Goethe was born in 1749 and
where he lived during his earlier years. Goethe occupies a place in
German literature analogous only to that of Shakespeare in our own and
we may well believe that this house is as much venerated in the
Fatherland as the humble structure in Stratford-on-Avon is revered in
England. It has been purchased by a patriotic society and restored as
nearly as possible to its original condition and now contains a
collection of relics connected with the poet--books, original
manuscripts, portraits and personal belongings. The custodian shows us
about with the officiousness and pride of his race and relates many
anecdotes of the great writer, which are duly translated by the Captain.
While it is hard for us to become enthusiastic over a German writer
about whom we know but little, it is easy to see that the patriotic
native might find as much sentiment in the Goethe house as we did in
Abbotsford or Alloway.


It is only a short run from Frankfort to Mayence, where we begin the
famous Rhine Valley trip. We pause for luncheon at the excellent Hotel
d'Angleterre, which overlooks the broad river. The city, declares Herr
Baedeker, is one of the most interesting of Rheinish towns and certainly
one of the oldest, for it has a continuous history from 368, at which
time Christianity was already flourishing. It figured extensively in the
endless church and civil wars that raged during the middle ages, and was
captured by the French in 1689 and 1792. After the latter fall it was
ceded to France, which, however, retained it but a few years. Formerly
it was one of the most strongly fortified towns in the kingdom, but its
walls and forts have been destroyed, though it still is the seat of a
garrison of seventy-five hundred soldiers. It has a cathedral of first
importance, founded as early as 400, though few traces of the original
building can be found. A notable feature is a pair of bronze doors
executed in 988, illustrating historic events of that time. But the
greatest distinction of Mayence is that Johann Gutenberg, the father of
modern printing, was born here near the end of the fourteenth century.
At least this is the general opinion of the savants, though there be
those who dispute it. However, there is no doubt that he died in the
city about 1468; neither is it disputed that he established his first
printing shop in Mayence, and did much important work in the town. The
famous Gutenberg Bible, a copy of which sold recently for $50,000, was
executed here about 1450. A bronze statue of the famous printer by
Thorwaldsen stands in front of the cathedral.

 [Illustration: BINGEN ON THE RHINE]

The fifty or sixty miles between Mayence and Coblenz comprise the most
picturesque section of the Rhine, so famous in song and legend, and our
road closely follows the river for the whole distance. The really
impressive scenery begins at Bingen, ten miles west of Mayence, where we
enter the Rhine Gorge. On either side of the river rise the clifflike
hills--literally vine-covered, for the steep slopes have been terraced
and planted with vineyards to the very tops. Our road keeps to the north
of the river and is often overhung by rocky walls, while far above we
catch glimpses of ivy-clad ruins surmounting the beetling crags. The
highway is an excellent one, much above the German average. In places it
is bordered by fruit-trees--a common practice in Germany--and we pass
men who are picking the luscious cherries. So strong is law and order in
the Fatherland, we are told, that these public fruit-trees are never
molested and the proceeds are used for road improvement. The day is
showery, which to some extent obscures the scenery, though the changeful
moods of light and color are not without charm. The great hills with
their castles and vineyards are alternately cloud-swept and flooded with
sunlight--or, more rarely, hidden by a dashing summer shower.

Bingen has gained a wide fame from the old ballad whose melancholy lilt
comes quickly to one's mind--though we do not find the simple country
village we had imagined. It has about ten thousand people and lies in a
little valley on both sides of the Nahe, a small river which joins the
Rhine at this point. It is an ancient place, its history running back to
Roman times. Slight remains of a Roman fortress still exist, though the
site is now occupied by Klopp Castle, which was restored from complete
ruin a half century ago. This castle is open to visitors and from its
tower one may look down on the town with its gray roofs and huge

From Bingen to Coblenz, a distance of about forty miles, the gorge of
the Rhine is continuous and we are never out of sight of the
vine-covered hills and frequent ruins. Nearly all the ruined castles of
Germany center here and we see fit matches for Caerphilly, Richmond or
Kenilworth in Britain. In this hurried chronicle I cannot even mention
all of these picturesque and often imposing ruins, though a few may be
chosen as typical.

 [Illustration: CASTLE RHEINSTEIN]

A short distance from Bingen is Rheinstein, originally built about 1270
and recently restored by Prince Henry as one of his summer residences,
though he has visited it, the custodian tells us, but once in two years.
A wearisome climb is necessary to reach the castle, which is some two
hundred and fifty feet above the road where we leave our car. The
mediaeval architecture and furnishings are carried out as closely as
possible in the restoration, giving a good idea of the life and state of
the old-time barons. There is also an important collection of armor and
antiquities relating to German history.

In this same vicinity is Ehrenfels, which has stood in ruin nearly three
hundred years. Its towers still stand, proud and threatening, though the
residential portions are much shattered. Opposite this ruin, on a small
island in the river, is the curious "Mouse Tower," where, legend
asserts, a cruel archbishop was once besieged and finally devoured by an
army of mice and rats, a judgment for causing a number of poor people to
be burned in order to get rid of them during a famine. But as the bishop
lived about 915 and the tower was built some three hundred years later,
his connection with it is certainly mythical and let us hope the rest of
the story has no better foundation. The old name, Mausturm (arsenal), no
doubt suggested the fiction to some early chronicler.

The castles of Sonneck and Falkenburg, dating from the eleventh century,
surmount the heights a little farther on our way. These were strongholds
of robber-barons who in the middle ages preyed upon the river-borne
traffic--their exploits forming the burden of many a ballad and tale.
These gentry came to their just deserts about 1300 at the hands of
Prince Rudolph, who consigned them to the gallows and destroyed their
castles. Sonneck is still in ruins, but Falkenburg has been restored and
is now private property.

Almost every foot of the Rhine Gorge boasts of some supernatural or
heroic tale--as myth-makers the Germans were not behind their
contemporaries. We pass the Devil's Ladder, where the fiend once aided
an ancient knight--no doubt on the score of personal friendship--to
scale the perpendicular cliff to gain the hand of a "ladye fair." A
little farther are the Lorelei Rocks, where the sirens enticed the
sailors to destruction in the rapids just below. Quite as unfortunate
were the seven virgins of Schonburg, who for their prudery were
transformed into seven rocky pinnacles not far from the Lorelei--and so
on ad infinitum.


A volume would not catalog the legends and superstitions of the Rhine
Gorge. At least the Captain so declares and adds that he knows a strange
story of the Rhine that an old German once told him in Bingen. At our
solicitation he repeats it as we glide slowly along the river road and I
have thought it worth recasting for my book. There will be no harm done
if it is skipped by the reader who has no taste for such things. It is a
little after the style of several German legends of ancient gentry, who
sold themselves to the Evil One to gain some greatly desired
point--though I always thought these stories reflected on the business
sagacity of the Devil in making him pay for something he was bound to
get in the end without cost. The story, I find, is long enough to
require a chapter of itself and it may appropriately follow this.

There are endless small towns along the road, but they are quite free
from the untoward conditions I have described in the more retired
villages off the track of tourist travel. Boppard, St. Goar Oberwesel
and Bornhofen are among the number and each has its storied ruin. Near
the last-named are the twin castles of The Brothers, with their legend
of love and war which the painstaking Baedeker duly chronicles. Above
St. Goar towers the vast straggling ruin of Rheinfels, said to be the
most extensive in Germany, which has stood in decay since its capture by
the French in 1797. It crowns a barren and almost inaccessible rock
which rises nearly four hundred feet above the river. Near Boppard is
Marxburg, the only old-time castle which has never been in ruin. It has
passed through many vicissitudes and at present serves as a museum of
ancient weapons and warlike costumes.

As we approach Coblenz we come in sight of the battlemented towers of
Stolzenfels rising above the dense forests that cover the great hill on
which it stands. The castle is three hundred and ten feet above the
river, but the plain square tower rises one hundred and ten feet higher,
affording a magnificent outlook. The present structure is modern, having
been built in 1842 by the crown prince on the site of an old castle
destroyed by the French. It now belongs to the emperor, who opens it to
visitors when he is not in residence. It is a splendid edifice and gives
some idea of the former magnificence of the ruins we have seen to-day.


Coblenz, at the junction of the Moselle and Rhine, appeals to us as a
stopping-place and we turn in at the Monopol--just why I do not know.
There are certainly much better hotels in Coblenz than this
old-fashioned and rather slack place, though it has the redeeming
feature of very moderate charges. The Captain is in very ill humor; he
has quarreled with an employee at the garage and as nearly as I can
learn, tried to drive the car over him. I feared the outraged Teuton
might drop a wrench in our gear-box as a revenge for the rating the
Captain gave him--though, fortunately, we experience no such misfortune.

Coblenz has about fifty thousand people and while it is a very old
city--its name indicating Roman origin--it has little to detain the
tourist. An hour's drive about the place will suffice and we especially
remember the colossal bronze statue of Emperor William I., which stands
on the point of land where the two rivers join--a memorial which
Baedeker declares "one of the most impressive personal monuments in the
world." The equestrian figure is forty-six feet high and dominates the
landscape in all directions, being especially imposing when seen from
the river. Just opposite Coblenz is the fortress of Ehrenbreitstein,
about four hundred feet above the river. A finely engineered road leads
to the fort, where a large garrison of soldiers is stationed. Visitors
are admitted provided they can satisfy the officials that they are not
foreign military men who might spy out the defenses.

Our route as planned by the Royal Automobile Club was to take us from
Coblenz to Treves by way of the Moselle Valley, but our desire to see
the cathedral leads us to follow the Rhine road to Cologne. Mr. Maroney
of the Club afterwards told me that we made a mistake, since the scenery
and storied ruins of Moselle Valley are quite equal to the Rhine Gorge
itself. Cologne one can see any time, but the chance to follow the
Moselle by motor does not come every day. We are disappointed in the
trip to Cologne, since there is little of the picturesqueness and
romantic charm that delighted us on the previous day. The castle of
Drachenfels, on a mighty hill rising a thousand feet above the river, is
the most famous ruin, but we do not undertake the rather difficult
ascent. The far-reaching view from the summit was celebrated by Byron in
"Childe Harold."

Just opposite is the ruin of Rolandseck, with its pathetic legend of
unrequited love and constancy. This castle, tradition says, was built by
Roland, a crusader, who returned to find that his affianced bride had
given him up as dead and entered a convent. He thereupon built this
retreat whence he could look down upon the convent that imprisoned the
fair Hildegund. When after some years he heard of her death he never
spoke again, but pined away until death overtook him also a short time

Midway we pass through Bonn, the university town, a clean, modern city
of sixty thousand people. The university was founded a century ago and
has some three thousand students. Beethoven was born in Bonn in 1770, in
a house which now contains a museum relating to the great composer.

Our road keeps to the right of the river, which is swollen and dirty
yellow from recent rains. We pass many villages with miserable
streets--the road in no wise compares with the one we followed yesterday
through the Gorge. Altogether, the fifty miles between Coblenz and
Cologne has little to make the run worth while.

We find ourselves in the narrow, crooked streets of Cologne well before
noon and are stopped by--it seems to us--a very officious policeman who
tells us we may proceed if we will be careful. This seems ridiculous and
the Captain cites it as an example of the itching of every German
functionary to show his authority, but later we learn that motors are
not allowed on certain streets of Cologne between eleven and two
o'clock. Our friend the officer was really showing us a favor on account
of our ignorance in permitting us to proceed. We direct our course
towards the cathedral, which overshadows everything else in Cologne, and
the Savoy Hotel, just opposite, seems the logical place to stop. It
proves very satisfactory, though it ranks well down in Baedeker's list.

Cologne Cathedral is conceded to be the most magnificent church in the
world and a lengthy description would be little but useless repetition
of well-known data. We find, however, that to really appreciate the
vastness and grandeur of the great edifice one must ascend the towers
and view the various details at close range. It is not easy to climb
five hundred feet of winding stairs, especially if one is inclined to be
a little short-winded, but the effort will be rewarded by a better
conception of the building and a magnificent view covering a wide scope
of country. We are unfortunate today since a gray mist obscures much of
the city beneath us and quite shuts out the more distant landscape. The
great twin towers, which rise more than five hundred feet into the sky,
were completed only a few years ago. In the period between 1842 and 1880
about five million dollars was expended in carrying out the original
plans--almost precisely as they were drawn by the architects nearly
seven hundred years ago. The corner-stone was laid in 1248 and
construction was carried forward at intervals during the period of seven

Inside, the cathedral is no less impressive than from the exterior. The
vaulting, which rises over two hundred feet from the floor, is carried
by fifty-six great pillars and the plan is such that one's vision may
cover almost the whole interior from a single viewpoint. It is lighted
by softly toned windows--mostly modern, though a few date from the
fourteenth and fifteenth centuries and, altogether, the effect is hardly
matched by any other church in Christendom.

We make no attempt to see the show-places of Cologne during our stay--it
would require a week to do this and we shall have to come again. An
afternoon about the city gives us some idea of its monuments and notable
buildings as well as glimpses of the narrow and often quaint streets of
the old town. The next day we are away for Treves and Luxemburg before
the "verboten" hour for motor cars.

If we missed much fine scenery in the Moselle Valley by coming to
Cologne, the loss is partly atoned for by the country we see to-day and
the unusually excellent roads. Our route as far as Treves runs a little
west of south and diverges some seventy-five miles from the Rhine. It is
through a high, rolling country, often somewhat sterile, but we have
many glorious views from the upland roads. There are long stretches of
hills interspersed with wooded valleys and fields bright with yellow
gorse or crimson poppies. There are many grain-fields, though not so
opulent-looking as those we saw in the Rhine Valley, and we pass through
tracts of fragrant pine forest, which often crowd up to the very
roadside. There are many long though usually easy climbs, and again we
may glide downward a mile or more with closed throttle and disengaged
gears. Much of the way the roadside is bordered with trees and the
landscapes remind us more of France than any we have so far seen in
Germany. We pass but two or three villages in the one hundred and ten
miles between Cologne and Treves; there are numerous isolated
farmhouses, rather cleaner and better than we have seen previously. We
stop at a country inn in the village of Prun for luncheon, which proves
excellent--a pleasant surprise, for the inn is anything but
prepossessing in appearance. The guests sit at one long table with the
host at the head and evidently the majority are people of the village.
Beer and wine are served free with the meal and some of the patrons
imbibe an astonishing quantity. This seems to be the universal custom in
the smaller inns; in the city hotels wine comes as an extra--no doubt
somewhat of a deterrent on its free use.

Treves--German Trier--is said to be the oldest town in Germany. The
records show that Christianity was introduced here as early as 314 and
the place was important in ecclesiastical circles throughout the middle
ages. We have a splendid view of the town from the hills as we approach;
it lies in the wide plain of the Moselle and its red sandstone walls and
numerous towers present a very striking appearance. The cathedral,
though not especially imposing, is one of the oldest of German
churches--portions of it dating from 528 and the basilica now used as a
Protestant church is a restored Roman structure dating from 306. But for
all its antiquity Treves seems a pleasant, up-to-date town with
well-paved streets--a point which never escapes the notice of the
motorist. The surrounding hills are covered with vineyards and the wine
trade forms one of the principal enterprises of the place.

A few miles from Treves we enter the Grand Duchy of Luxemburg, an
independent country, though part of the German Zollverein, which no
doubt makes our touring license and number-plates pass current here. It
is a tiny state of no more than a thousand square miles, though it has a
quarter million people. Luxemburg, where we decide to stop for the
night, is the capital. The Grand Hotel Brasseur looks good, though the
service proves rather slack and the "cuisine" anything but first-class.
Luxemburg is a delight--partly due to its peculiar and picturesque
situation, but still more to the quaint buildings and crooked, narrow
streets of the older parts and the shattered walls and watchtowers that
still encircle it. The more modern portion of the town--which has but
twenty thousand inhabitants--is perched on a rocky tableland, three
sides of which drop almost precipitously for about two hundred feet to
small rivers beneath. The hotels and principal business houses are on
the plateau, but the older parts of the town are wedged in the narrow
valleys. These are spanned by several high bridges, from one of which we
have a delightful viewpoint. It is twilight and the gray houses are
merging into the shadows, but the stern towers and broken walls on the
heights fling their rugged forms more clearly than ever against the wide
band of the sunset horizon. These are the remnants of the fortifications
which were condemned to destruction by the Treaty of London in 1876,
which guaranteed the neutrality of the Grand Duchy. Only the obsolete
portions of the defenses were permitted to stand and these add
wonderfully to the romantic beauty of the town. Indeed, the wide
panoramas of valley and mountain, of bare, beetling rock and trim park
and garden, groups of old trees, huge arched viaducts and the ancient
fortifications, form one of the most striking scenes we have witnessed
on the Continent. It evidently so impressed the poet Goethe, about one
hundred years ago, for a graphic description of Luxemburg may be found
in his writings. So charming is the scene that we linger until darkness
quite obliterates it and return to our inn feeling that Luxemburg has
more of real attractiveness than many of the tourist-thronged cities.



                          THE CAPTAIN'S STORY

Friedrich Reinmuth had always been an unsettled and discontented youth;
if his days were sad he complained because they were so and if they were
prosperous he still found fault. It was not strange that, being of such
a nature, he should already have tried many vocations, although yet a
young man. At the time of my story he had become a soldier, and while he
often fretted and chafed under the rigor of military discipline, he did
not find it easy to shift from its shackles as had been his wont in
other occupations.

By chance he formed a friendship with an old and grizzled comrade, who,
although he had served almost two score years in the army, was still
hale and strong. The old man had been in the midst of numberless
desperate engagements but had always come out of the fray unscathed.
Queer stories were whispered about him among his soldier companions, but
only whispered, for it was believed, and with reason, that he would take
summary vengeance on anyone who crossed his path. He had murdered his
own brother in a fit of fury, and to him was also imputed the
assassination of the Baron of Reynold, who rebuked the fiery-tempered
man on some trifling point; but he had never been brought to justice for
any of his crimes. There was a vague rumor that Gottfried Winstedt had
sold himself to the devil in return for the power to resist all mortal
weapons and to escape all human justice--this it was that made him
invulnerable in battle and shielded him from the wrath of the law.

But Friedrich in his association with this man for the space of two
months had noted little extraordinary about him. He never guessed why
the veteran broke an habitual reserve to become his companion until one
night when they were conversing on the eve of battle. As they sat
moodily together by a waning camp-fire the older man, who had been even
more morose than usual during the day, broke the silence. In a
melancholy voice he said:

"I have somewhat to tell you now, for before the set of tomorrow's sun I
will be--God in Heaven, where will I be?--but let it pass; I dare not
think of it. My life has been one of unparalleled wickedness; I have
committed crimes the very recital of which would appall the most
hardened criminal in the Kingdom, but I would not recite them to you if
I could, for what would avail the monotonous story of vice and bloodshed
for which there is no repentance? You have heard the rumors that these
accursed fools have whispered of me--I will not say whether they be true
or no. But long foreseeing--yes, foreknowing my fate--I have sought for
someone in whom I might confide. I was drawn toward you--I hardly know
why--yet I dare not wholly trust in you. Upon one condition,
nevertheless, I will commit to you something of vast and curious

Friedrich in his amazement was silent and the veteran brought forth from
the folds of his faded cloak a small sandalwood box, which he held
toward the young man.

"I would have you swear," he said, "by all you hold sacred that you will
never open this casket except on one condition; it is that you should so
desire some earthly thing--wealth, fame, love--that you are willing to
barter your eternal welfare to secure it."

Something in the old man's manner as well as his words aroused in
Friedrich a feeling akin to fear. He took the required oath, mentally
resolving that he would throw the mysterious casket in the river on the
first opportunity.

"Now leave me instantly; I shall never see you again in this world and
even I am not so fiendish as to wish to see you in my next--but hark ye,
if you ever break the seal out of idle curiosity I will return from the
grave to avenge myself on you."

Startled by the old man's vehemence, Friedrich hastened to his quarters
and strove to sleep. But the strange event of the evening and thoughts
of the morrow's conflict, with its danger and perhaps death, drove
slumber from his eyes. He tossed about his barrack until the long roll
summoned his regiment to the field of battle. The fight raged fiercely
and long, and toward evening Friedrich fell, seriously wounded.

It was many weeks before he was able to be on his feet again and finding
himself totally unfitted by his wound for the profession of arms--and,
in fact, for any active occupation--he sadly returned to his native town
on the Rhine. Here it chanced there was an old portrait painter of some
little renown who took a liking to the unfortunate young soldier and
proposed that he study the art; and Friedrich applied himself with such
diligence in his new vocation that before long he far excelled his
master. Things went prosperously with him. His fame spread beyond the
borders of his native town and came to the ears of many of the noble
families of the vicinity. He had the good fortune to be patronized by
some of these and he transferred the beauty of many a haughty dame and
fair damsel to his canvas with unvarying success. Indeed, it is said
that more than one of his fair clients looked languishingly at the young
artist, whose skill and fame made much amends for humble birth.

But Friedrich boasted that he gazed upon the fairest of them unmoved.
Ambitious and free-hearted, he thought himself impervious to the wiles
of love--a frame of mind he declared indispensible to his art. His
success brought him gold as well as fame and but one achievement was
needed to complete his triumphs--the patronage of the Herwehes, the
noblest and wealthiest of all the great families within leagues of the
town. True, the baron and his son were away at present, engaged in the
war that still distracted the land, but the lady and her daughter were
at home in the magnificent castle which surmounted an eminence far above
the Rhine, in full view against the sky from the window of the artist's
studio. The fact that the Herwehes withheld their countenance from him
was a sore obstacle in the way of Friedrich's ambitions; their influence
extended to every class, and many lesser lights, professedly imitators
of the noble family, followed their example even in trivial matters.

Great was the young artist's satisfaction when one afternoon two ladies
descended from a coach (bearing the Herwehe coat-of-arms) which paused
in the street before his studio. Both were veiled, but Friedrich had no
doubt that his visitors were the baroness and her daughter, whose
patronage he so earnestly desired. When both were seated the elder
woman, throwing aside her veil, revealed a face that had lost little of
its youthful charm, and with a tone of haughty condescension said:

"I have seen some of your portraits, Master Reinmuth, and was pleased
with them. I wish you, regardless of time and cost, to paint my

By this time Friedrich had to some extent overcome his trepidation and
with a profound courtesy replied,

"I shall be happy to serve you, My Lady, if you will be good enough to
indicate the time and place for the sittings."

"Elsa, dearest, what are your wishes?" asked the mother, and in a voice
whose tremulous sweetness thrilled the painter, the young woman replied:

"Let it be at the castle, my dear mother, tomorrow at this time. I would
rather not come to the studio, for I dread the ride over the rough
mountain road."

"I will be at your service, My Lady," answered Friedrich, and his
visitors departed without delay.

Friedrich marveled that his thoughts for the remainder of the day--and
much of the night--should revert to the demure little figure whose voice
had so moved him. Fame bespoke her the fairest of the fair, but it never
entered his imaginings that he, a humble portrait painter, could think
of the daughter of such an illustrious line but as one of a different
order of beings from himself. He had never thought seriously of love;
his mistress, he averred, had been fame. True, he had in idle moments
dreamed of a being that he might madly adore--and, alas for him, his
fancy had become embodied in human form. But why had this maiden so
affected him? She had not lifted her veil and had spoken but once, and
if her bearing were dignified and her form graceful, he had seen many
others no less charming in these respects nor thought of them a second
time. If he had analyzed his feelings he would probably have said that
the unusual impression was due to the recognition of his talent by the

The appointed hour on the morrow found him following the footpath which
led to the castle gate--a much shorter though steeper way than the coach
road. Intent as he was on his mission, he could not but pause
occasionally to view the wonderful scene that spread out beneath him.
The cliff on which the many-towered old castle stood almost overhung the
blue waters of the Rhine, which here run between rocks of stupendous
height. A little farther down the valley, but in full view from his
splendid vantage-point, were vineyard-terraced hills interspersed with
wooded ravines and luxuriant meadows. The magic touch of early autumn
was over it all--a scene of enchanting beauty. On the opposite cliff was
an ancient ruin (now entirely vanished) and Friedrich recalled more than
one horrible tale about this abandoned place that had blanched his
youthful cheeks. At his feet lay the gray roofs and church spires of his
native town and perhaps a shadow of a thought of the renown he would one
day bring to it flitted through his mind--for on such an errand and such
a day what could limit his ambitious musings?

He soon found himself at the castle gate and was admitted by the keeper,
who knew of his coming. He was ushered into a magnificent apartment and
told to await the Lady Elsa's arrival--and the servant added that the
baroness was absent, having gone that morning to Coblenz to join her

Friedrich, in the few moments he waited, endeavored to compose himself,
though feelings of anxiety and curiosity strove with his efforts at
indifference; but when the oaken door swung softly open and his fair
client stood before him, he started as though he had seen an apparition.
Indeed, it flashed on him at once that all the perfection he had
imagined, all the beauty of which he had dreamed, stood before him in
the warm tints of life, though to his heated fancy she seemed more than
a being of flesh and blood. In truth, the kindly eyes, the expressive
and delicately moulded face, the flood of dark hair that fell over
shapely shoulders, the slender yet gracefully rounded form, and, more
than all, that certain nameless and indescribable something that makes a
woman beautiful--did not all these proclaim her almost more than mortal
to the over-wrought imagination of the young visionary?

"Are you ill?" were her first words when her quick eye caught the
ghastly pallor of the artist's face and the bewildered look that
possessed it.

At the sound of her voice he strove desperately to regain his composure.
"No, not ill," he said. "I still suffer from a wound I received in the
army and the climb up the mountainside somewhat overtaxed my strength."

"I am sorry," she replied. "Had I known, I would gladly have come to the

The look of sympathetic interest with which she accompanied her words
was a poor sedative to the already overmastering passions of the artist,
but by a supreme effort he recovered himself to say:

"No, no; it is better that I do not pass so much of my time there. I
have applied myself too closely of late. Are you ready, lady, for the

"Yes," said she. "I have been preparing for you. Follow me." She led the
way through several magnificent apartments to one even more splendid
than the rest. "In this room," she continued, "I would have the portrait
painted, and as a setting can you not paint a portion of the room

Friedrich assented in an absent manner and taking up his palette was
about to give his fair subject directions to seat herself to the best
advantage when he saw she had already done so, with a pose and
expression that might have delighted even a dispassionate artist's
eye--if, indeed, any eye could gaze dispassionately on the Lady Elsa
Herwehe. She had arranged the drapery of her dull-red silken robe so as
to display to the best advantage--and yet not ostentatiously--the
outlines of her graceful figure, and her dark hair fell in a shadowy
mass over her shoulders. Her face bore a listless and far-away
expression--was it natural, or only assumed for artistic effect?
Friedrich knew not, but it made her seem superhuman. The artist took up
his brush but his brain reeled and his hand trembled.

"You are surely ill," exclaimed Lady Elsa and would have called a
servant, but a gesture from Friedrich detained her.

"No, lady, I am not ill"--and losing all control of himself he went
madly on--"but I cannot paint the features of an angel. O, Lady Elsa, if
it were the last words I should utter I must declare that I love you.
The moment I saw you a tenfold fury seized my soul. I never loved before
and I cannot stem the torrent now. O, lady, the difference between our
stations in life is wide--but, after all, it may soon be otherwise; I
have talent and the world will give me fame. This love in a day has
become my life and what is mere breath without life? If you scorn me my
life is gone"--

The Lady Elsa, who was at first overcome by astonishment, recovered
herself to interrupt him. "Peace, you foolish babbler," cried she. "You
came to paint my likeness, not to make love to me. If you cannot do your
task, cease your useless vaporings and depart. Think you the daughter of
an historic line that stretches back to Hengist could throw herself away
on a poor portrait painter, the son of an ignorant peasant? Take you to
your business or leave me."

To Friedrich every word was a dagger-thrust. He seemed about to reply
when--as awakening from a dreadful dream--he rushed from the apartment
and fled in wild haste down the stony path to the town. Locking himself
in his studio he threw himself on the couch in an ecstacy of despair and
passed the greater part of the night in sleepless agony. From sheer
exhaustion he fell into a troubled slumber towards morning--if such a
hideous semi-conscious state may be called slumber. In his dream he saw
a host of demons and in their midst a veiled figure at the sight of
which his heart leaped, for it seemed the Lady Elsa. She approached and
offered him her hand, veiled beneath the folds of her robe; when he had
clasped it he stood face to face, not with the lady of his love, but
with the sin-hardened and sardonic features of Gottfried Winstedt, the
old soldier-comrade whose dreadful fate he had forgotten! With a wild
start he awoke and his thoughts immediately flashed to the strange
casket the old man had given him. The words of that anomaly of a man
came to him with an awful significance: "When thou shalt so desire some
earthly thing that thou wouldst barter thine eternal welfare to secure
it, thou mayest open this casket."

Fearing that his curiosity might some time overcome him and dreading the
threat of old Gottfried, he had buried the casket in a lonely spot and
quite forgotten it. His dream recalled it to his memory at a time when
no price would be too great to pay for the love of Elsa Herwehe. He
sprang from his couch and hastened to the secluded corner of his
father's garden, where he had buried the mysterious casket in a wrapping
of coarse sack-cloth. Returning to his room and carefully barring the
doors he opened the box with little difficulty. It contained a roll of
manuscript and a single sheet of yellow parchment. Friedrich unrolled
this and a small scrap of paper fell at his feet. It bore these words in
faded red letters:

"Thou who art willing to bear the consequence, read; the incantation on
the parchment, if repeated in a solitary spot at midnight, will bring
the presence of the Prince of Evil, though thou canst not know the
meaning of the words. He will give thee thy desire at the price of thy
soul. But beware--thou hast yet the power to recede."

Friedrich read these words with a strange fascination, nor did the
solemn warning in the slightest degree alter his purpose to seek a
conference with the enemy. The parchment bore but a single verse in a
strange language, and the artist thrust it in his bosom with a feeling
of triumph. A glance at the manuscript showed it the story of Gottfried
Winstedt's life, which he contemptuously flung into the grate, saying:

"What care I for the doings of the brutal old fool? To-night I will seek
the old ruin across the Rhine which stands opposite the Herwehe
estate--my future estate, perchance; no one will interrupt my business
there!" And he laughed a mirthless laugh that startled even himself, for
a hoarse echo seemed to follow it; was it the Fiend or the ghost of
Gottfried Winstedt who mocked him?

Meanwhile, the Lady Elsa sat in her chamber overcome with surprise at
the actions of the artist; annoyed and angry, yet half pitying him, for
he was a gallant young fellow, sure to gain the world's applause--and
what woman ever found it in her heart to wholly condemn the man who
truly loves her? She ordered a servant to restore to Friedrich his
painting utensils which he had left in his precipitate flight, but the
man returned saying he could not gain admittance to the studio and had
left his charge at the door.

The following day--the same on which Friedrich had recovered the fatal
casket--the baroness returned from Coblenz, accompanied by her eldest
son. She inquired as to the progress of the portrait and Elsa in a half
careless, yet melancholy tone told her all and even expressed pity for
the poor artist. But the haughty noblewoman was highly incensed at the
presumption of the young painter and Heinrich, the son, who was present,
flew into an uncontrollable fury and swore by all he considered holy
that the knave's impudence should be punished. Snatching his sword he
left the castle in a great rage. Elsa called to him to desist, but her
words were unheeded. She then appealed to her mother: "Will you permit
the rash boy to leave in such a passion? You know his fiery temper and
he may do that which will cause him grave trouble."

"I will not hinder him," replied the baroness. "Let him chastise the
churl for his presumption; if we do not make an example of someone, the
village tanner will next seek your hand."

"And if he did, would I need hear his suit? Why give farther pain to the
poor artist, who is already in deepest distress?"

"I shall half believe you heard his suit with favor if you urge more in
his defense," said the mother petulantly, and Elsa, who knew her moods,
sighed and was silent.

Meanwhile the wrathful young nobleman pressed on towards the town. The
sun had already far declined and flung his low rays on the broad river
till it seemed a stream of molten gold. The red and yellow hues of early
autumn took on a brighter glow and the town, the distant vineyards and
the wooded vales lay in hazy quietude. But little of this beauty engaged
the mind of Heinrich Herwehe as he bounded down the mountain path. As he
brooded over the insult to his sister his anger, instead of cooling,
increased until the fury of his passion was beyond his control. In this
mood he came to the outskirts of the town where, to his intense
satisfaction, he saw the artist approaching. Friedrich was hastening
toward the river and would have taken no notice of the young baron, whom
he quite failed to recognize. But he was startled by a fierce oath from
Heinrich, who exclaimed:

"Ha, you paltry paint-dauber, draw and defend yourself or I will stab
you where you stand."

"Fool," replied the astonished artist, "who are you that thus accosts me
on the highroad?"

"That matters not; defend yourself or die." And with these words the
impetuous young nobleman rushed upon the object of his wrath. But
Friedrich was no insignificant antagonist; he had served in the army and
had acquired the tricks of sword-play, and for a contest that required a
cool indifference to life or death, his mood was far the better of the
two. Little caring what his fate might be and without further words he
coolly met the onslaught of his unknown enemy. Such was Heinrich's fury
that he quite disregarded caution in his desire to overcome an opponent
whom he despised. Such a contest could not be of long duration. In a
violent lunge which the artist avoided, the nobleman's foot slipped on
the sward and he was transfixed by his adversary's rapier. With scarce a
groan he expired and Friedrich, hardly looking at his prostrate foe,

"You fool, you have brought your fate upon yourself!" and, as he
sheathed his sword, added, "Who you were and why you did so set upon me
I cannot conceive, but it matters not; I doubt not that the confessor to
whom I go will readily absolve me from this deed."

He pursued his lonely way to the river's edge, where he stepped into a
small boat and as he moved from the shore he muttered, "O, Elsa, Elsa,
he who would give an earthly life for love might be counted a madman;
what then of one who seeks to barter eternity for thee?" He soon reached
the opposite bank of the river and began the steep ascent to the ruined
castle. He beheld, in the gathering twilight, the same romantic scenes
that had so thrilled him but two days ago and could scarce believe
himself the same man. Darkness was rapidly gathering and by the time he
reached the ruin the last glow of sunset had faded from the sky. He
crossed the tottering bridge over the empty moat and entered the
desolate courtyard. Here, in the uncertain gloom of the lonely ruin, he
must wait the coming of midnight and wear away as best he could the
ghostly monotony of the passing hours. But his purpose was fixed; his
desperation had been only increased by the events of the day, and
seating himself on a fragment of the wall he determined to endure
whatever came. He heard the great cathedral bell of the distant town
toll hour after hour and when midnight drew near he unfalteringly
entered the vast deserted hall of state. Here he lighted his small lamp,
whose feeble beams struggled fitfully with the shadows of the huge
apartment. He drew forth the parchment--he had not mustered courage to
look at it since morning--and as the last stroke of the great bell died
in the gloom, he muttered the strange language of the incantation.
Suddenly there came a rushing sound as of a gust of wind, which
extinguished his lamp, and, forgetting that he must repeat the fatal
words, he let the parchment fall. The wind whiffed it he knew not
whither. No visible shape came before him, but in a moment he felt the
awful presence and a voice sepulchral and stony came out of the

"Mortal, who art thou that dost thus summon me? What wilt thou?"

Sick with terror and yet determined even to death, Friedrich answered:
"And knowest thou not? Men speak thee omniscient. But I can tell thee of
my hopeless love--"

"Nay, I know all," continued the voice. "Relight thy lamp and I will
tell thee how thou mayst gain thy desire."

Trembling, Friedrich obeyed and looked wildly about, expecting the
visible form of the Fiend, but he saw nothing. Yet he felt the horrid
presence and knew that his awful visitant was near at hand.

From out of the darkness a heavy iron-clasped book fell at his feet and
the voice continued: "Open a vein and sign thy name in the book with

Friedrich with changeless determination obeyed and the book disappeared.

"Take this gold," said his dreadful monitor, and a heavy bag fell at the
artist's feet with a crash, "and I will give thee graces to win the fair
one's heart. Repeat the incantation that I may depart."

For the first time since it had disappeared Friedrich thought of the
fatal parchment and in an agony of horror remembered that it was gone.
He would have rushed from the castle but the power of the presence held
him immovable.

"Fiend," he shrieked, "where is the parchment? Thou knowest; tell me, in
God's name!"

"Fool, tenfold fool, dost thou call on my archenemy to adjure me? The
parchment is naught to me; it was thy business to guard it. I can wait
till day-break when I must depart, and with me thou must go."

"Fiend," he shrieked, "where is the parchment? I adjure thee"--but the
voice was silent and the mighty power still chained its victim to the
spot. It were useless to follow the blasphemous ravings of the
unfortunate youth, who cursed God and humankind as well as the enemy
until the first ray of the rising sun darted through the crumbling
arches, when the inexorable power smote him dead and doubtless carried
his spirit to the region of the damned.

Herwehe Castle--and, indeed, the whole town and countryside--was in a
wild uproar on the following morning. The young nobleman had been found
murdered, sword in hand, and all knew from the wailing mother the
mission on which he had set out the evening before. Friedrich was
missing and was instantly accused as the murderer. Companies of furious
retainers and villagers scoured the countryside until at last a party
searching the old ruin found the object of their wrath. He lay dead upon
the floor of the ancient hall of state with only an extinguished lamp
near him and, to their amazement, a bag of gold.

Various theories were advanced concerning him and his death. The
commonly accepted one was that he had stolen the gold and murdered the
young nobleman and, being struck with remorse, had ended his life with
some subtle poison. But none ever knew the real fate of the poor artist
save his old father, who guessed it from reading the manuscript of
Gottfried Winstedt, which he found unconsumed in the grate of his son's


                       A FLIGHT THROUGH THE NORTH

Twenty miles from Luxemburg we come to the French border, where we must
pay another fee to the German official who occupies a little house by
the roadside and who takes over the number-plates which we received on
entering Germany. The French officer, a little farther on, questions us
perfunctorily as to whether we have anything dutiable; we have purchased
only a few souvenirs and trinkets in Germany and feel free to declare
that we have nothing. We suppose our troubles with the customs ended and
the Captain, who purchased several bottles of perfume in Cologne--the
French are strongly prejudiced against German perfumes--rests easier.
But in Longwy, a small town four or five miles from the border, another
official professing to represent the customs stops us and is much more
insistent than the former, though after opening a hand-bag or two and
prying about the car awhile, he reluctantly permits us to proceed. And
this is not all, for at the next town a blue-uniformed dignitary holds
us up and declares he must go through our baggage in search of
contraband articles. A lengthy war of words ensues between this new
interloper and the Captain, who finally turns to us and says:

"This fellow insists that if we do not give him a list of our purchases
in Germany and pay duty, our baggage will be examined in the next town
and if we are smuggling anything we'll have to go to jail."

This is cheerful news, but our temper is roused by this time and we
flatly refuse to give any information to our questioner or to permit him
to examine our baggage. He leaves us--with no very complimentary
remarks, the Captain says--and we make as quick a "get-away" as
possible. We keep a sharp look-out in the next two or three villages,
but are not again troubled by the minions of the law. We begin to
suspect that the officers were simply local policemen who were trying to
frighten us into paying a fee, and we are still of this opinion.

After crossing the border we follow a splendid road leading through a
rather uninteresting country and a succession of miserable villages, a
description of which would be no very pleasant reading. Suffice it to
say that their characteristics are the same as those of similar villages
we have already written about--if anything, they are dirtier and uglier.
They are all small and unimportant, Montmedy, the largest, having only
two thousand inhabitants and a considerable garrison. This section was
the scene of some of the great events of the war of 1870-71. About noon
we come to Sedan, which gave its name to the memorable battle if,
indeed, such a one-sided conflict can be called a battle. The Germans
simply corralled the French army here with about as much ease as if it
were a flock of sheep--but the Captain insists they would have no such
"walk-away" to-day. The ancient inn--bearing the pretentious name of
Hotel de la Croix d'Or--where we have lunch, endeavors to charge one
franc "exchange" on an English sovereign, thereby arousing the Captain's
ire, not so much on account of the extortion as for the presumption in
questioning an English gold-piece, which ought to pass current wherever
the sun shines. He indignantly seeks a bank and tells down French coin
to the landlord, along with his compliments delivered in no very
conciliatory tone. Sedan is an old and untidy town of about twenty
thousand people and aside from its connection with the famous battle has
little to interest the tourist.

Our route along the river Meuse between Sedan and Mezieres takes us over
much of the battlefield, but there is little to-day to remind one of the
struggle. Out of Sedan the road is better--a wide, straight, level
highway which enables us to make the longest day's run of our entire
tour. The country improves in appearance and becomes more like the
France of Orleans and Touraine. The day, which began dull and hazy, has
cleared away beautifully and the flood of June sunshine shows Summer
France at its best. From the upland roads there are far-reaching views,
through ranks of stately trees, of green landscapes, flaming here and
there with poppy-fields or glowing with patches of yellow gorse. The
country is trim and apparently well-tilled; the villages are better and
cleaner and the road a very dream for the motorist. At Guise there is a
ruined castle of vast extent, its ancient walls still encircling much of
the town. Guise was burned by the English under John of Hanehault in
1339, but the redoubtable John could not force the surrender of the
castle, which was defended by his own daughter, the wife of a French
nobleman then absent.

So swift is our progress over the fine straight road that we find
ourselves in the streets of St. Quentin while the sun is yet high, but a
glance at our odometer tells us we have gone far enough and we turn in
at the Hotel de France et d'Angleterre. It is evidently an old house and
every nook and corner is cumbered with tawdry bric-a-brac--china,
statuettes, candlesticks and a thousand and one articles of the sort.
Our apartments are spacious, with much antique furniture, and the
high-posted beds prove more comfortable than they look. Mirrors with
massive gilt frames stare at us from the walls and heavy chandeliers
hang from the ceilings. The price for all this magnificence is quite
low, for St. Quentin is in no sense a tourist town and hotel rates have
not yet been adjusted for the infrequent motorist. The hotel is
well-patronized, apparently by commercial men, who make it a rather
lively place. The meals are good and the servants prompt and
attentive--superior in this respect to many of the pretentious
tourist-thronged hotels.

There is nothing to keep us in St. Quentin; in the morning we start out
to drive about the town, but the narrow, crooked streets and miserable
cobble pavements soon change our determination and we inquire the route
to Amiens. It chances that the direct road, running straight as an arrow
between the towns, is undergoing repairs and we are advised to take
another route. I cannot now trace it on the map, but I am sure the
Captain for once became badly mixed and we have a good many miles of the
roughest going we found in Europe.

We strike a stretch of the cobblestone "pave" which is still encountered
in France and ten miles per hour is about the limit. These roads are
probably more than a hundred years old. They are practically abandoned
except by occasional peasants' carts and their roughness is simply
indescribable. As it chances, we have a dozen miles of this "pave"
before we reach the main road and we are too occupied with our troubles
to look at the country or note the name of the one wretched village we

Once in the broad main highway, however, we are delighted with the
beauty and color of the country. We pass through wide, unfenced fields
of grain, interspersed with the ever-present poppies and blue
cornflowers and from the hills we catch glimpses of the distant river.
Long before we come to Amiens--shall I say before we come in sight of
the city?--we descry the vast bulk of the cathedral rising from the
plain below. The surrounding city seems but a soft gray blur, but the
noble structure towers above and dominates everything else until we
quite forget that there is anything in Amiens but the cathedral. We soon
enter an ancient-looking city of some ninety thousand people and make
the mistake of choosing the Great Hotel d'la Univers, for, despite its
pretentious name, it is dingy and ill-arranged and the service is
decidedly slack.

Amiens Cathedral is one of the greatest churches of Europe, though the
low and inharmonious towers of the facade detract much from the dignity
of the exterior. Nor does the high and extremely slender central spire
accord well with the general style of the building. The body of the
cathedral, divested of spire and towers, would make a fit match for
Cologne, which it resembles in plan and dimensions, but it has a more
ancient appearance, having undergone little change in six centuries. The
delicate sculptures and carvings are stained and weather-worn, but they
present that delightful color toning that age alone can give. Inside, a
recent writer declares, it is "one vast blaze of light and color coming
not only from the clerestory but from the glazed triforium also, the
magnificent blue glass typifying the splendor of the heavens"--a
pleasing effect, on the whole, though the flood of softly toned light
brings out to disadvantage the gaudy ornaments and trinkets of the
private chapels so common in French cathedrals. Ruskin advises the
visitor, no matter how short his time may be, to devote it, not to the
contemplation of arches and piers and colored glass, but to the woodwork
of the chancel, which he considers the most beautiful carpenter work of
the so-called Flamboyant period. There is also a multitude of sculptured
images, some meritorious wall frescoes, and several stained-glass
windows dating from the thirteenth century. At the rear is a statue of
Peter the Hermit, for the monk who started the great crusading movement
of the middle ages was a native of Amiens.

All of these things we note in a cursory manner; we recognize that the
student might spend hours, if not days, in studying the details of such
a mighty structure. But such is not our mood; the truth is, we are a
little tired of cathedrals and are not sorry that Amiens is the last for
the present. What an array we have seen in our month's tour: Rouen,
Orleans, Tours, Dijon, Nevers, Ulm, Mayence, Cologne, Amiens--not to
mention a host of lesser lights. We have had a surfeit and we shall
doubtless be able to better appreciate what we have seen after a period
of reflection, which will also bring a better understanding to our aid
should we resume our pilgrimage to these ecclesiastical monuments.

There is little besides the cathedral to detain the tourist in Amiens,
unless, indeed, he should be fortunate enough to be able to go as
leisurely as he likes. Then he would see the Musee, which has a really
good collection of pictures and relics, or the library, which is one of
the best in French provincial towns. There are some quaint old houses
along the river and many odd corners to delight the artistic eye. John
Ruskin found enough to keep him in Amiens many days and to fill several
pages in his writings. But it would take more than all this to delay us
now when we are so near the English shores. If we leave Amiens early
enough we may catch the noon Channel boat--we ought to cover the ninety
miles to Boulogne in three or four hours. But we find the main road to
Abbeville closed and lose our way twice, which, with two deflated tires,
puts our plan out of question. Much of the road is distressingly rough
and there are many "canivaux" to slacken our speed. We soon decide to
take matters easily and cross the Channel on the late afternoon boat.

The picturesque old town of Abbeville was one of John Ruskin's favorite
sketching grounds. We pass the market-place, which is surrounded by
ancient houses with high-pitched gables colored in varied tints of gray,
dull-blue and pale-green. The church is cited by Ruskin as one of the
best examples of Flamboyant style in France, though the different parts
are rather inharmonious and of unequal merit. Abbeville was held by the
English for two hundred years and the last possession, except Calais, to
be surrendered to France. Here in 1514 Louis of Brittany married Mary
Tudor--the beautiful sister of Henry VIII.--only to leave her a widow a
few months later. She returned to England and afterwards became the wife
of the Duke of Suffolk.

It is market-day in Montreuil and the streets are crowded with country
people. We stop in the thronged market-place, where a lively scene is
being enacted. All kinds of garden produce and fruits are offered for
sale and we are importuned to purchase by the enterprising market-women.
We find the fruit excellent and inexpensive, and this, with a number of
other object lessons in the course of our travels, impressed us with the
advantages of the European market plan, which brings fresh produce
direct to the consumer at a moderate price.

We have most of the afternoon about Boulogne. In starting on our tour a
month before we hardly glanced at our landing port, so anxious were we
for the country roads; but as we drive about the city now, we are
delighted with its antiquity and quaintness. It is still enclosed by
walls--much restored, it is true, and so, perhaps, are the unique
gateways. The streets are mostly paved with cobbles, which make
unpleasant driving and after a short round we deliver the car at the
quay. At the Hotel Angleterre we order some strawberries as an "extra"
with our luncheon--these being just in season--and we are cheerfully
presented with a bill for six francs for a quantity that can be bought
in the market-place for ten cents--this in addition to an unusually high
charge for the meal. Evidently Boulogne Bonifaces are not in business
solely for their health. The town is a frequented summer resort, with a
good beach and numerous hotels and lodging-places. It is said to be the
most Anglicized town in France--almost everyone we meet seems familiar
with English. The Captain suggests that we may be interested in seeing
the Casino, one of the licensed gambling-houses allowed in a few French
towns. The government gets a good share of the profits, which are very
large. We do not care to try our luck on the big wheel, but the Captain
has no scruples--winning freely at first, but quitting the loser by a
goodly number of francs--a common experience, I suppose. The small boy
is not allowed to enter the gambling room, from which minors are rigidly

We have a glorious evening for crossing to Folkestone--the dreaded
Channel is on its best behavior. A magnificent sunset gilds the vast
expanse of rippling water to the westward and flashes on the white chalk
cliffs of the English shore. As we come nearer and nearer we have an
increasing sense of getting back home--and England has for us an
attractiveness that we did not find in France and Germany.

And yet our impressions of these countries were, on the whole, very
favorable. France, so far as we saw it, was a beautiful, prosperous
country, though there was not for us the romance that so delighted us in
England. We missed the ivied ruins and graceful church-towers that lend
such a charm to the British landscapes. The highways generally were
magnificent, though already showing deterioration in many places. The
roads of France require dustless surfacing--oil or asphaltum, similar to
the methods extensively used in England. Since the time of our tour
steps have been taken in this direction and in time France will have by
far the best road-system in the world. Her highways are already broad
and perfectly engineered and need only surfacing. About Paris much of
the wretched old pave is still in existence, but this will surely be
replaced before long. The roads are remarkably direct, radiating from
the main towns like the spokes of a wheel, usually taking the shortest
cut between two important points.

The squalor and filth of the country villages in many sections is an
unpleasant revelation to the tourist who has seen only the cities, which
are clean and well-improved. But for all this thrift is evident
everywhere; nothing is allowed to go to waste; there are no ragged,
untilled corners in the fields. Every possible force is utilized.
Horses, dogs, oxen, cows, goats and donkeys are all harnessed to loads;
indeed, the Captain says there is a proverb in France to the effect that
"the pig is the only gentleman," for he alone does not work. The women
seem to have more than their share of heavy disagreeable tasks, and this
is no doubt another factor in French prosperity.

Despite the notion to the contrary, France is evidently a very religious
country--in her way. Crucifixes, crosses, shrines, etc. are common along
the country roadsides, and churches are the best and most important
buildings in the towns and cities. Priests are seen everywhere and
apparently have a strong hold on their parishioners. In view of such
strong entrenchment, it seems a wonder that the government was able to
completely disestablish the church and to require taxation of much of
its property.

The country policeman, so omnipresent in England, is rarely seen in
France, and police traps in rural districts are unknown. Even in towns
arrests are seldom made--the rule being to interfere only with motorists
who drive "to the danger of the public." One misses the handy fund of
information which an English policeman can so readily supply; the few
French officials we questioned were apparently neither so intelligent
nor accommodating.

We were astonished to see so few motor cars in France, and many which we
did see were those of touring foreigners. France, for all her lead in
the automobile industry, does not have many cars herself. She prefers to
sell them to the other fellow and keep the money. The number of cars in
France is below the average for each of the states of the Union, and the
majority are in Paris and vicinity. French cars almost dominate the
English market and many of the taxicabs in London are of French make. We
saw a large shipment of these on the wharves at Boulogne. If it were not
for our tariff, we may be sure that France would be a serious competitor
in the motor-car trade of the United States. There is absolutely no
prejudice against the motorist in France and foreigners are warmly
welcomed to spend their money. The Frenchman does not travel
much--France is good enough for him and he looks on the Americans and
Englishmen who throng his country as a financial asset and makes it as
easy for them to come as he possibly can. In fact, under present
conditions it is easier to tour from one European country to another
than it is among our own states--one can arrange with the Royal
Automobile Club for all customs formalities and nothing is required
except signing a few papers at each frontier.

In some respects we noted a strong similarity between France and
Germany. The cities of both countries are clean and up-to-date, with
museums, galleries, splendid churches and fine public buildings. In
both--so far as we saw--the small villages are primitive and filthy in
the extreme and in rural districts the heaviest burdens appear to fall
on the women. In both countries farming is thoroughly done and every
available bit of land is utilized. Each gives intelligent attention to
forestry--there are many forests now in their prime, young trees are
being grown, and the roadsides are planted with trees.

The roads of Germany are far behind those of France; nor does any great
interest seem to be taken in highway improvement. Of course the roads
are fairly well maintained, but there is apparently no effort to create
a system of boulevards such as France possesses. Germany has even fewer
motor cars than her neighbor, a much smaller number of automobile
tourists enter her borders, and there is more hostility towards them on
part of the country people. There are no speed traps, but one is liable
to be arrested for fast driving in many towns and cities.

The German business-man strikes one more favorably than the Frenchman;
he is sturdy, good-looking and alert, and even in a small establishment
shows the characteristics that are so rapidly pushing his country to the
front in a commercial way.

But the greatest difference in favor of Germany--at least so far as
outward appearance goes--is to be seen in her soldiery. Soldiers are
everywhere--always neat and clean, with faultless uniform and shining
accoutrements, marching with a firm, steady, irresistible swing. To the
casual observer it would seem that if an army of these soldiers should
enter France they could march directly on Paris without serious
resistance. But some authorities say that German militarism is a hollow
show and that there is more real manhood in the Frenchman. Let us hope
the question will not have to be settled again on the field of battle.

Perhaps these random impressions which I have been recording are
somewhat superficial, but I shall let them stand for what they are
worth. On our long summer jaunt through these two great countries we
have had many experiences--not all of them pleasant. But we have seen
many things and learned much that would have been quite inaccessible to
us in the old grooves of travel--thanks to our trusty companion of the
wind-shod wheels. And perhaps the best possible proof that we really
enjoyed our pilgrimage is a constantly increasing desire to repeat
it--with variations--should our circumstances again permit.


                         Odd Corners of Britain



                        THE MOTHERLAND ONCE MORE

Back to England--back to England! Next to setting foot in the homeland
itself, nothing could have been more welcome to us after our month's
exile on the Continent. And I am not saying that we did not enjoy our
Continental rambles; that we did the pages of this book amply testify.
It seemed to us, however, that for motor touring, England surpasses any
other country in many respects. First of all, the roads average vastly
better--we remembered with surprise the stories we had heard of the
greatly superior roads of France--a delusion entertained by many
Englishmen, for that matter. We had also found by personal experience
that the better English inns outclass those on the Continent in service
and cleanliness and never attempt the overcharges and exactions not
uncommon in France and Germany. The second-rate French inn, we are
informed on good authority, is more tolerable than the second-rate inn
of England. An experienced English motorist told us that since expense
was a consideration to him, he generally spent his vacations in France.
He declared that there he could put up comfortably and cheaply at the
less pretentious inns while he would never think of stopping at English
hotels of the same class. I fancy, however, that if one follows
Baedeker--our usual guide in such matters--and selects number one among
the list, he will find every advantage with the English hotels.

And we are sure that the English landscapes are the most beautiful in
the world. Everywhere one sees trim, parklike neatness--vistas of
well-tilled fields interspersed with great country seats, storied ruins
and the ubiquitous church-tower so characteristic of Britain. It is a
distinctive church-tower, rising from green masses of foliage such as
one seldom sees elsewhere. And where else in a civilized country will
one find such trees--splendid, beautifully proportioned trees, standing
in solitary majesty in the fields, stretching in impressive ranks along
the roadside or clustering in towering groups about some country mansion
or village church?

And who could be impervious to the charm of the English village?
Cleanly, pleasantly situated and often embowered in flowers, it appeals
to the artistic sense and affords the sharpest possible contrast to the
filthy and malodorous little hamlets of France and Germany. The cities
and larger towns of these countries do not suffer any such disadvantage
in comparison with places of the same size in England--but we care less
for the cities, often avoiding them. In England, we found ourselves
among people speaking a common language and far more kindly and
considerate towards the stranger within their gates than is common on
the Continent. We can dispense with our courier, too, for though he was
an agreeable fellow, we enjoy it best alone. So, then, we are glad to be
back in Britain and are eager to explore her highways and byways once

We plan a pilgrimage to John O'Groat's house and of course the Royal
Automobile Club is consulted.

"We have just worked out a new route to Edinburgh," said Mr. Maroney,
"which avoids the cities and a large proportion of police traps as well.
You leave the Great North Road at Doncaster and proceed northward by
Boroughbridge, Wilton-le-Wear, Corbridge, Jedburgh and Melrose. You will
also see some new country, as you are already familiar with the
York-Newcastle route."

And so we find ourselves at the Red Lion at Hatfield, about twenty miles
out of London on the beginning of our northern journey. It is a cleanly,
comfortable-looking old house, and though it is well after noon, an
excellent luncheon is promptly served--the roadside inns are adapting
themselves to the irregular hours of the motorist.

Hatfield House--the Salisbury estate--is near the inn, but though we
have passed it several times, we have never hit on one of the "open"
days, and besides, we have lost a good deal of our ambition for doing
palaces; half-forgotten and out-of-the-way places appeal more strongly
now. We are soon away on the splendid highway which glistens from a
heavy summer shower that fell while we were at luncheon. We proceed
soberly, for we have had repeated warnings of police traps along the
road. The country is glorious after the dashing rainfall; fields of
German clover are in bloom, dashes of dark red amidst the prevailing
green; long rows of sweet-scented carmine-flowered beans load the air
with a heavy perfume. A little later, when we pass out of the zone of
the shower we find hay-making in progress and everything is redolent of
the new-mown grasses. Every little while we pass a village and at
Stilton--I have written elsewhere of its famous old inn--a dirty urchin
runs alongside the car howling, "Police traps! Look out for police
traps!" until he receives a copper to reward his solicitude for our

Toward evening we come in sight of Grantham's magnificent spire and we
have the pleasantest recollections of the Angel Inn, where we stopped
some years previously--we will close the day's journey here. One would
never get from the Angel's modest, ivy-clad front any idea of the
rambling structure behind it; indeed, I have often wondered how all the
labyrinth of floors, apartments and hallways could be crowded behind
such a modest facade as that of the Red Lion of Banbury, the Swan of
Mansfield or the Angel of Grantham, for example. Such inns are no doubt
a heritage of the days when it was necessary to utilize every available
inch of space within the city walls. In most cases they are conducted
with characteristic English thoroughness and are cleanly and restful,
despite their antiquity and the fact that they are closely hedged in by
other buildings. As a rule part or all of the old inner court which
formerly served as a stable-yard has been adapted as a motor garage.

The Angel is said to have been in existence as a hostelry as early as
1208, but the arched gateway opening on the street may be of still
earlier date, having probably formed a part of some monastic building.
Tradition connects Charles I. with the inn--an English inn of such
antiquity would be poor indeed without a legend of the Wanderer--but the
claims of the Angel to royal associations go back much farther, for King
John is declared to have held his court here in 1213. Richard III. is
also alleged to have stopped here and to have signed the death warrant
of the Duke of Buckingham at the time. There is record of princely
visitors of later dates and it is easy to see that the Angel has had
rare distinction--from the English point of view. We remember it,
however, not so much for its traditions as for the fact that we are
given a private sitting-room in connection with our bed-rooms with no
apparent increase in the bill. Our good luck in this particular may have
been due to the slack business at the time of our arrival and we could
hardly expect to have our accommodations duplicated should we visit the
Angel and Royal again.

Grantham is a town of nearly twenty thousand people, though it does not
so impress the stranger who rambles about its streets. Two or three
large factories are responsible for its size, but these have little
altered its old-time heart. The center of this is marked by St.
Wulfram's Church, one of the noblest parish churches in the Kingdom. Its
spire, a shapely Gothic needle of solid stone, rises nearly three
hundred feet into the heavens, springing from a massive square tower
perhaps half the total height. The building shows nearly all Gothic
styles, though the Decorated and Early English predominate. It dates
from the thirteenth century and has many interesting monuments and
tombstones. Its gargoyles, we agreed, were as curious as any we saw in
England; uncanny monsters and queer demons leer upon one from almost any
viewpoint. Inside there is a marvelously carved baptismal font and a
chained library of the sixteenth century similar to the one in Wimborne
Minster. Altogether, St. Wulfram's is one of the notable English country
churches, though perhaps among the lesser known. Grantham also possesses
an ancient almshouse of striking architecture and a grammar school which
once included among its pupils Sir Isaac Newton, who was born at
Woolsthorpe Manor, near the town.


Old Whitby appeals to our recollection as worth a second visit and we
depart from our prearranged route at Doncaster, reaching York in the
late afternoon. It has been a cold, rainy day and we cannot bring
ourselves to pass the Station Hotel, though Whitby is but fifty miles
farther and might be reached before nightfall.

We have previously visited York many times, but have given our time
mainly to the show-places and we devote the following forenoon to the
shops. There are many interesting book-stalls and no end of
antique-stores with many costly curios, such as a Scotch claymore,
accompanied by documents to prove that it once belonged to Prince
Charlie. The shops, it seemed to us, were hardly up to standard for a
city of nearly one hundred thousand. But York, while of first rank as an
ecclesiastical seat and famous for its quaint corners and antiquity, is
not of great commercial or manufacturing importance. It is a busy
railroad center, with hundreds of trains daily, and next to Chester
probably attracts a greater number of tourists than any other English
provincial town. Leeds, Bradford, Sheffield, Hull, Middlesbrough,
Halifax and Huddersfield are all Yorkshire cities with larger population
and greater commercial activities. Of English churches we should be
inclined to give York Cathedral first place, though viewpoints on such
matters are so widely different that this may be disputed by good
authorities. In size, striking architecture and beautiful windows, it is
certainly not surpassed, though it has not the historical associations
of many of its rivals.

Whitby is but fifty miles from York. An excellent road runs through a
green, prosperous country as far as Pickering--about a score of
miles--but beyond this we plunge into the forbidding hills of the
bleakest, blackest of English moors. It is too early for the
heather-bloom, which will brighten the dreary landscape a few weeks
later, and a drizzling rain is falling from lowering clouds. The stony
road, with steep grades and sharp turns, requires closest attention and,
altogether, it is a run that is pleasant only in retrospect when
reviewed from a cozy arm-chair by the evening fire.

I am going to write a chapter giving our impressions of Old Whitby
which, I hope, will reflect a little of its charm and romance, so we may
pass it here. We resume our journey after a pleasant pause in the old
town and proceed by Guisborough, Stockton and Darlington to Bishop
Auckland, where we again take up our northern route.

Bishop Auckland gets its ecclesiastical prefix from the fact that since
the time of Edward I. it has been the site of one the palaces of the
Bishops of Durham. The present building covers a space of no less than
five acres and is surrounded by a park more than a square mile in
extent. The palace is splendid and spacious, though very irregular, the
result of additions made from time to time in varying architectural
styles. It is easy to see how the maintenance of such an
establishment--and others besides--keeps the good bishop poor, though
his salary is about the same as that of the President of the United
States. The town is pleasantly situated on an eminence near the
confluence of the river Wear and a smaller stream. About a mile distant,
at Escomb, is a church believed to date from the seventh century. It is
quite small but very solidly built, the walls tapering upward from the
ground, and some of the bricks incorporated in it are clearly of Roman
origin, one of them bearing an old Latin inscription.

Bishop Auckland marks the western termination of Durham's green fields
and fine parks; we descend a steep, rough hill and soon find ourselves
on a very bad road leading through a bleak mining country. Tow-Law is
the first of several bald, angular villages with scarce a tree or shrub
to relieve their nakedness; the streets are thronged with dirty, ragged
urchins and slatternly women sit on the doorsteps along the road. The
country is disfigured with unsightly buildings and piles of waste from
the coal-mines; and the air is loaded with sooty vapors. It is a relief
to pass into the picturesque hills of Northumberland, where, even though
the road does not improve, there are many charming panoramas of wooded
vales with here and there a church-tower, a ruin or a village. Towns on
the road are few; we cross the Tyne at Corbridge, where a fine old
bridge flings its high stone arches across the wide river. It is the
oldest on the Tyne, having braved the floods for nearly two centuries
and a half. In 1771 a great flood swept away every other bridge on the
river, but this sturdy structure survived to see the era of the motor
car. A bridge has existed at this point almost continuously since Roman
times, and the Roman piers might have been seen until very recently. The
vicinity is noted for Roman remains--sections of the Great Wall and the
site of a fortified camp being near at hand. Many relics have been
discovered near by and researches are still going on. The village by the
bridge is small and unimportant, though it has an ancient church which
shows traces of Roman building materials. Most remarkable is the Peel
tower in the churchyard, where the parson is supposed to have taken
refuge during the frequent Scotch incursions of the border wars.

Leaving the bridge we follow the Roman Watling Street, which proceeds in
almost a straight line through the hills. It leads through a country
famous in song and story; every hill and valley is reminiscent of
traditions of the endless border wars in which Northumberland figured so
largely and for so many years. Its people, too, were generally adherents
of the Stuarts and it was near the village of Woodburn, through which we
pass, that the Jacobites attacked the forces of George I., only to meet
with crushing defeat, resulting in the ruin of many of the noblest
families of the county. A little farther, in the vale of Otterburn, was
the scene of the encounter of the retainers of Douglas and Percy,
celebrated in many a quaint ballad. In the next few miles are Byrness
and Catcleugh, two fine country-seats quite near the roadside, and there
is a diminutive but very old church close to the former house. Byrness
is the seat of a famous foxhunting squire who keeps a large pack of
hounds and pursues the sport with great zeal. The wild, broken country
and sparse population are especially favorable to hunting in the saddle.
There is no lack of genuine sport, since the wild fox is a menace to
lambs and must be relentlessly pursued to the death. Just opposite
Catcleugh House a fine lake winds up the valley for nearly two miles. It
seems prosaic when we learn that it is an artificial reservoir,
affording a water supply for Newcastle-on-Tyne, but it is none the less
a charming accessory to the scenery. Beyond this the road runs through
almost unbroken solitude until it crosses the crest of the Cheviots and
enters the hills of Scotland.


                               OLD WHITBY

It is a gray, lowering evening when we climb the sharply rising slope to
the Royal Hotel to take up our domicile for a short sojourn in Old
Whitby. The aspect of the town on a dull wet evening when viewed from
behind a broad window-pane is not without its charm, though I may not be
competent to reflect that charm in my printed page. It is a study in
somber hues, relieved only by the mass of glistening red tiles clustered
on the opposite hillside and by an occasional lighted window. The
skeleton of the abbey and dark solid bulk of St. Mary's Church are
outlined against the light gray of the skies, which, on the ocean side,
bend down to a restless sea, itself so gray that you could scarce mark
the dividing line were it not for the leaden-colored waves breaking into
tumbling masses of white foam. Looking up the narrow estuary into which
the Esk discharges its waters, one gets a dim view of the mist-shrouded
hills on either side and of numerous small boats and sailing vessels
riding at anchor on the choppy waves.

It is a wild evening, but we are tempted to undertake a ramble about the
town, braving the gusty blasts that sweep through the narrow lanes and
the showers of spray that envelop the bridge by which one crosses to the
opposite side of the inlet. There is little stirring on the streets and
the alleylike lanes are quite deserted. Most of the shops are closed and
only the lights streaming from windows of the houses on the hillside
give relief to the deepening shadows. The gathering darkness and the
increasing violence of the wind deter us from our purpose of climbing
the long flight of steps to the summit of the cliff on which the abbey
stands and we slowly wend our way back to the hotel.

The following morning a marked change has taken place. The mists of the
previous evening have been swept away and the intensely blue sky is
mottled with white vapory clouds which scurry along before a stiff
sea-breeze. The deep indigo blue of the ocean is flecked with masses of
white foam rolling landward on the crests of the waves, which break into
spray on the rocks and piers. The sea-swell enters the estuary, tossing
the numerous fishing smacks which ride at anchor and lending a touch of
animation to the scene. The abbey ruin and church, always the dominating
feature of East Cliff, stand out clearly against the silvery horizon and
present a totally different aspect from that which impressed us last
evening. In the searching light of day, the broken arches and tottering
walls tell plainly the story of the ages of neglect and plunder that
they have undergone and speak unmistakably of a vanished order of
things. Last night, shrouded as they were in mysterious shadows, the
traces of wreck and ruin were half concealed and it did not require an
extraordinarily vivid imagination to picture the great structures as
they were in their prime and to re-people them with their ancient
habitants, the gray monks and nuns. To-day the red and white flag of St.
George is flying from the low square tower of St. Mary's and crowds of
Sunday worshipers are ascending the broad flight of stairs. Services
have been held continuously in the plain old edifice for seven
centuries--its remote situation and lack of anything to attract the
looter or enrage the iconoclast kept it safe during the period which
desecrated or destroyed so many churches.

The history of a town like Whitby is not of much moment to the casual
sojourner, who is apt to find himself more attracted by its romance than
by sober facts. Still, we are glad to know that the place is very
ancient, dating back to Saxon times. It figured in the wars with the
Danes and in the ninth century was so devastated as to be almost
obliterated for two hundred years. It was not until the reign of
Elizabeth that it took rank as a seaport. The chief industry up to the
last century was whale-fishing, and a hardy race of sea-faring men was
bred in the town, among them Captain Cook, the famous explorer. While
fishing was ostensibly the chief means of livelihood of the inhabitants
of Whitby, it could hardly have been wholly responsible for the wealth
that was enough to attract Robin Hood and his retainers to the town and
they did not go away empty-handed by any means. The Abbot of Whitby
protected his own coffers by showing the outlaw every courtesy, but
Robin was not so considerate of the purses of the townspeople. Probably
he felt little compunction at easing the reputed fishermen of their
wealth, for he doubtless knew that it was gained by smuggling and it
was, after all, only a case of one outlaw fleecing another. The position
of the town behind some leagues of sterile moor, traversed by
indifferent and even dangerous roads, was especially favorable for such
an irregular occupation; and it moreover precluded Whitby from figuring
in the great events of the Kingdom, being so far removed from the
theatre of action. With the decline of the whale-fisheries, the mining
and manufacture of jet began to assume considerable proportion and is
to-day one of the industries of the place. This is a bituminous
substance--in the finished product, smooth, lustrous and intensely
black. It is fashioned into personal ornaments of many kinds and was
given a great vogue by Queen Victoria. It is found only in the vicinity
of Whitby and is sold the world over, though it has to compete with
cheap imitations, usually made of glass.

St. Hilda's Abbey is the chief monument of antiquity in Whitby and aside
from actual history it has the added interest of being interwoven with
the romantic lines of Scott's "Marmion." Situated on the summit of East
Cliff, it has been for several centuries the last object to bid farewell
to the departing mariner and the first to gladden his eyes on his
return. Seldom indeed did the old monks select such a site; they were
wont to seek some more sheltered spot on the shore of lake or river--as
at Rievaulx, Fountains or Easby. But this abbey was founded under
peculiar conditions, for the original was built as far back as 658 in
fulfillment of a vow made by King Oswy of Northumbria. In accordance
with the spirit of his time, the king made an oath on the verge of a
battle with one of his petty neighbors that if God granted him the
victory he would found an abbey and that his own daughter, the Lady
Hilda, should be first abbess. All traces of this early structure have
disappeared, but it was doubtless quite insignificant compared with its
successor, for the Saxons never progressed very far in the art of
architecture. The fame of Hilda's piety and intelligence attracted many
scholars to the abbey, among them Caedmon, "the father of English
poetry," who, as the inscription on the stately memorial in St. Mary's
churchyard reads, "fell asleep hard by A. D. 680." The death of the good
abbess also occurred in the same year. Her successor, Elfleda, governed
for a third of a century, after which little record remains. The
original abbey was probably destroyed in the Danish wars. It was revived
after the Conquest in 1078 by monks of the Benedictine order and
gradually a vast pile of buildings was erected on the headland, but of
these only the ruined church remains. The great size and splendid design
of the church would seem to indicate that in its zenith of power and
prosperity Whitby Abbey must have been of first rank. Its active history
ended with its dissolution by Henry VIII. Scott in "Marmion" represents
the abbey as being under the sway of an abbess in 1513, the date of
Flodden, but this is an anachronism, since an abbot ruled it in its last
days and the nuns had long before vanished from its cloisters.

He was a pretty poor saint in the "days of faith" who did not have
several miracles or marvels to his credit and St. Hilda was no exception
to the rule. One legend runs that the early inhabitants were pestered by
snakes and that the saint prayed that the reptiles be transmuted into
stone; and for ages the ammonite shells which abound on the coast and
faintly resemble a coiled snake were pointed out as evidence of the
efficacy of Hilda's petition. It was also said of the sea-birds that
flew over Whitby's towers that

                  "Sinking down on pinions faint,
                  They do their homage to the saint."

And an English writer humorously suggests that perhaps "the birds had a
certain curiosity to see what was going on in this mixed brotherhood of
monks and nuns." The most persistent marvel, however, which was credited
by the more superstitious less than a century ago, was that from West
Cliff under certain conditions the saint herself, shrouded in white,
might be seen standing in one of the windows of the ruin; though it is
now clear that the apparition was the result of a peculiar reflection of
the sun's rays.

The salt sea winds, the driving rain of summer and the wild winter
storms have wrought much havoc in the eight hundred years that "High
Whitby's cloistered pile" has braved the elements. A little more than
fifty years ago the central tower crashed to earth, carrying many of the
surrounding arches with it, and the mighty fragments still lie as they
fell. The remaining walls and arches are now guarded with the loving
care which is being lavished to-day upon the historic ruins of England
and one can only regret that the spirit which inspires it was not
aroused at least a hundred years ago.

St. Mary's, a stone's throw from the abbey, is one of the crudest and
least ornate of any of the larger churches which we saw in England. Its
lack of architectural graces may be due to the fact that it was
originally built--about 1110, by de Percy, Abbot of Whitby--for "the use
of the common people of the town," the elaborate abbey church being
reserved for the monks. Perhaps the worthy abbot little dreamed that the
plain, massive structure which he thought good enough for the laity
would be standing, sturdy and strong and still in daily use centuries
after his beautiful abbey fane, with its graceful arches, its gorgeous
windows and splendid towers had fallen into hopeless ruin. All around
the church are blackened old gravestones in the midst of which rises the
tall Caedmon Cross, erected but a few years ago. To reach St. Mary's one
must ascend the hundred and ninety-nine broad stone steps that lead up
the cliff--a task which would test the zeal of many church-goers in
these degenerate days.

 [Illustration: PIER LANE, WHITBY
 From original painting by J. V. Jelley, exhibited in 1910 Royal Academy]

We enjoyed our excursions about the town, for among the network of
narrow lanes we came upon many odd nooks and corners and delightful old
shops. The fish-market, where the modest catch of local fishermen is
sold each day, is on the west side. The scene here is liveliest during
the months of August and September, when the great harvest of the sea is
brought in at Whitby. It was on the west side, too, that we found Pier
Lane after a dint of inquiry--for the little Royal Academy picture which
graces these pages had made us anxious to see the original. Many of the
natives shook their heads dubiously when we asked for directions, but a
friendly policeman finally piloted us to the entrance of the lane. It
proved a mere brick-paved passageway near the fish-market, about five or
six feet in width, and from the top we caught the faint glimpse of the
abbey which the artist has introduced into the picture. It is one of the
many byways that intersect the main streets of the town--though these
streets themselves are often so narrow and devious as to scarce deserve
the adjective I have applied to them. Whitby has no surprises in
overhanging gables, carved oak beams, curiously paneled doorways or
other bits of artistic architecture such as delight one in Ludlow,
Canterbury or Shrewsbury. Everything savors of utility; the oldtime
Yorkshire fisherman had no time and little inclination to carve oak and
stone for his dwelling. I am speaking of the old Whitby, crowded along
the waterside--the new town, with its ostentatious hotels and
lodging-houses, extends along the summit of West Cliff and while very
necessary, no doubt, it adds nothing to the charm of the place. As an
English artist justly observes, "While Whitby is one of the most
strikingly picturesque towns in England, it has scarcely any
architectural attractions. Its charm does not lie so much in detail as
in broad effects"--the effects of the ruin, the red roofs, the
fisher-boats, the sea and the old houses, which vary widely under the
moods of sun and shade that flit over the place. The words of a writer
who notes this variation throughout a typical day are so true to life
that I am going to repeat them here:

"In the early morning the East Cliff generally appears merely as a pale
gray silhouette with a square projection representing the church, and a
fretted one the abbey. But as the sun climbs upwards, colour and
definition grow out of the haze of smoke and shadows, and the roofs
assume their ruddy tones. At midday, when the sunlight pours down upon
the medley of houses clustered along the face of the cliff, the scene is
brilliantly colored. The predominant note is the red of the chimneys and
roofs and stray patches of brickwork, but the walls that go down to the
water's edge are green below and full of rich browns above, and in many
places the sides of the cottages are coloured with an ochre wash, while
above them all the top of the cliff appears covered with grass. On a
clear day, when detached clouds are passing across the sun, the houses
are sometimes lit up in the strangest fashion, their quaint outlines
being suddenly thrown out from the cliff by a broad patch of shadow upon
the grass and rocks behind. But there is scarcely a chimney in this old
part of Whitby that does not contribute to the mist of blue-gray smoke
that slowly drifts up the face of the cliff, and thus, when there is no
bright sunshine, colour and detail are subdued in the haze."

In St. Mary's churchyard there is another cross besides the stately
memorial dedicated to Caedmon that will be pointed out to you--a small,
graceful Celtic cross with the inscription:

              "Here lies the body of Mary Linskill.
              Born December 13, 1840. Died April 9, 1891.
              After life's fitful fever she sleeps well
              Between the Heather and the Northern Sea."

If Caedmon was Whitby's first literary idol, Mary Linskill is the last
and best loved, for hundreds of Whitby people living to-day knew the
gentle authoress personally. She was a native of the town and being
early dependent on her own resources, she served an apprenticeship in a
milliner's shop and later acted as an amanuensis to a literary
gentleman. It was in this position, probably, that she discovered her
own capacity for writing and her ability to tell a homely story in a
simple, pleasing way. Her first efforts in the way of short stories
appeared in "Good Words." Her first novel, "Cleveden," was published in
1876 and many others followed at various intervals. Perhaps the best
known are distinctly Whitby stories--"The Haven Under the Hill," and
"Between the Heather and the Northern Sea." Her novels in simplicity of
plot and quiet sentiment may be compared with those of Jane Austen,
though her rank as a writer is far below that of the Hampshire
authoress. Her stories show a wealth of imagination and a true artistic
temperament, but they are often too greatly dominated by melancholy to
be widely popular. Most of them dwell on the infinite capacity of women
for self-sacrifice and sometimes the pathetic scenes may be rather
overdrawn. There are many beautiful descriptive passages and I quote one
from "The Haven Under the Hill," because it sets forth in such a
delightful manner the charm of Old Whitby itself:

"Everywhere there was the presence of the sea. On the calmest day you
heard the low, ceaseless roll of its music as it plashed and swept about
the foot of the stern, darkly towering cliffs on either side of the
harbour-bar. Everywhere the place was blown through and through with the
salt breeze that was 'half an air and half a water,' scented with
sea-wrack and laden not rarely with drifting flakes of heavy yeastlike

"The rapid growth of the town had been owing entirely to its nearness to
the sea. When the making of alum was begun at various points and bays
along the coast, vessels were needed for carrying it to London,
'whither,' as an old chronicler tells us, 'nobody belonging to Hild's
Haven had ever gone without making their wills.' This was the beginning
of the shipbuilding trade, which grew and flourished so vigorously,
lending such an interest to the sights and sounds of the place, and
finally becoming its very life. What would the old haven have been
without the clatter of its carpenters' hammers, the whir of its ropery
wheels, the smell of its boiling tar-kettles, the busy stir and hum of
its docks and wharves and mast-yards? And where, in the midst of so much
labour, could there have been found any time to laugh or to dance, but
for the frequent day of pride and rejoicing when the finished ship with
her flying flags came slipping slowly from the stocks to the waiting
waters, bending and gliding with a grace that gave you as much emotion
as if you had watched some conscious thing?... It is a little sad to
know that one has watched the launching of the last wooden ship that
shall go out with stately masts and rounding sails from the Haven Under
the Hill.

"Those of the men of the place who were not actually sailors were yet,
for the most part, in some way dependent upon the great, changeful,
bounteous sea.

"It was a beautiful place to have been born in, beautiful with history
and poetry and legend--with all manner of memorable and soul-stirring

The house where Mary Linskill was born, a plain stone structure in the
old town, still stands and is the goal of occasional pilgrims who
delight in the humbler shrines of letters.

It seems indeed appropriate that the old sea town, famous two centuries
ago for its shipbuilding trade and hardy mariners, should have given to
the world one of its great sea-captains and explorers. A mere lad, James
Cook came to Whitby as the apprentice of a shipbuilder. His master's
house, where he lived during his apprenticeship, still stands in Grape
Lane and bears an antique tablet with the date 1688. Cook's career as an
explorer began when he entered the Royal Navy in 1768. He was then forty
years of age and had already established a reputation as a daring and
efficient captain in the merchant service. He made three famous voyages
to the south seas, and as a result of these, Australia and New Zealand
are now a part of the British Empire, an achievement which will forever
keep his name foremost among the world's great explorers. He lost his
life in a fight with the natives of the Sandwich Islands in 1777, a year
after the American Declaration of Independence. His mangled remains were
buried in the sea whose mysteries he had done so much to subdue.

I am sensible that in these random notes I have signally failed to set
forth the varied charms of the ancient fisher-town on the Northern Sea,
but I have the consolation that all the descriptions and encomiums I
have read have the same failing to a greater or less degree. I know that
we feel, as we speed across the moorland on the wild windy morning of
our departure, that two sojourns in Whitby are not enough; and are
already solacing ourselves with the hope that we shall some time make a
third visit to the "Haven Under the Hill."



So rough and broken is the Northumberland country that we are scarcely
aware when we enter the Cheviot Hills, which mark the dividing line
between England and Scotland. The road is now much improved; having been
recently resurfaced with reddish stone, it presents a peculiar aspect as
it winds through the green hills ahead of us, often visible for a
considerable distance. It is comparatively unfrequented; there are no
villages for many miles and even solitary cottages are rare; one need
not worry about speed limits here. Jedburgh is the first town after
crossing the border and there are few more majestic ruins in all
Scotland than the ancient abbey which looms high over the town. It
recalls the pleasantest recollections of our former visit and the wonder
is that it does not attract a greater number of pilgrims.

We are again in an enchanted land, where every name reminds us of the
domain of the Wizard of the North! Here all roads lead to Melrose and
Abbotsford, and we remember the George as a comfortable, well-ordered
inn, a fit haven for the end of a strenuous day. There are several good
hotels in Melrose, made possible by the ceaseless stream of tourists
bound to Abbotsford in summertime. We reach the George after the dinner
hour, but an excellent supper is prepared for us, served by a canny
Scotch waiter clad in a cleaner dress-suit than many of his brethren in
British country inns are wont to wear. We have no fault to find with the
George except that its beds were not so restful as one might wish after
a day on rough roads and its stable-yard garage lacked conveniences.
These shortcomings may now be remedied, for the spirit of improvement is
strong among the inns of tourist centers in Scotland.

The abbey is but a stone's throw from the hotel and one will never weary
of it though he come to Melrose for the hundredth time. In delicate
artistic touches, in beauty of design and state of preservation as a
whole, it is quite unrivalled in Scotland. But for all that Melrose
would be as unfrequented as Dundrennan or Arbroath were it not for the
mystic spell which the Wizard cast over it in his immortal "Lay," and
were it not under the shadow of Abbotsford.

Abbotsford! What a lure there is in the very name! In the early morning
we are coursing down the shady lane that leads to the stately mansion
and reach it just after the opening hour. We are indeed fortunate in
avoiding a crowd like that which thronged it on our former visit; we are
quite alone and the purchase of a few souvenirs puts us on a friendly
footing with the gray-haired custodian. His daily task has become to him
a labor of love and he speaks the words, "Sir Walter," with a fervor and
reverence such as a religious devotee might utter the name of his patron
saint. He shows us many odd corners and relics which we missed before
and tells us the story of the house, with every detail of which he is
familiar. And, indeed, it is interesting to learn how Scott as a youth
admired the situation and as he gained wealth bought the land and began
the house. Its construction extended over several years and he had
scarcely pronounced it complete and prepared to spend his old age in the
home which he almost adored, when the blow fell. Everything was swept
away and Scott, the well-to-do country laird, was a pauper. He did not
see much of Abbotsford in the few years he had yet to live, though
through the consideration of his creditors he remained nominally in
possession. His days were devoted to the task of paying a gigantic debt
which he conceived himself honor-bound to assume, though he might easily
have evaded it by taking advantage of the law. Reflecting--after the
lapse of nearly a century--who shall say that the world is not vastly
the richer for its heritage of the sublime self-sacrifice, the heroism
and flawless integrity of Walter Scott?

The Abbotsford we see to-day has been considerably altered and added to
since Scott's time, though the rooms shown to visitors remain precisely
as he left them. The estate, considerably diminished, is still in
possession of the family, the Hon. Mrs. Maxwell-Scott, the
great-granddaughter of the author, being the present owner. She is
herself of a literary turn and has written "The Making of Abbotsford,"
an interesting history of the place. The family is not wealthy and it
was announced a few years ago that the sale of the estate had become
necessary, though, happily, this was avoided.

Our guide tells us that the home is usually leased during the "season"
each year for three hundred pounds and Americans are oftenest the
takers. Both the house and grounds are well-cared-for and we have many
glimpses of smooth green lawns and flower gardens from the windows and
open doors. The river, too, is near at hand and lends much to the air of
enchantment that envelops Abbotsford, for we know how Scott himself
loved the "silver stream" so often referred to in his writings. Indeed,
as we leave we cannot but feel that our second visit has been even more
delightful than our first--despite the novelty of first impressions.

On our return, the picturesque old Peel tower at Darnick village catches
our eye. It stands in well-kept grounds, the smooth lawn studded with
trees and shrubs, and the gray stone walls and towers are shrouded by
masses of ivy. It is the most perfect of the few remaining Peel towers
in Scotland--little fortress-homes of the less important gentry four or
five hundred years ago. These towers were usually built in groups of
three, arranged in triangular form, to afford better opportunity for
mutual defense against an enemy. Scott in his "Border Antiquities" tells
something of these miniature castles:

"The smaller gentlemen, whether heads of branches or clans, or of
distinct families, inhabited dwellings upon a smaller scale, called
Peels or Bastile-houses. They were surrounded by an enclosure, or
barmkin, the walls whereof, according to statute, were a yard thick,
surrounding a space of at least sixty feet square. Within this outer
work the laird built his tower, with its projecting battlements, and
usually secured the entrance by two doors, the outer of grated iron, the
innermost of oak clenched with nails. The apartments were placed
directly over each other, accessible only by a narrow turn-pike stair,
easily blocked up or defended."

Darnick, as I have intimated, is the best preserved of the towers now in
existence, being almost in its original state, and it has very
appropriately been adapted as a museum of relics, chiefly of Scottish
history, though there is some antique furniture and many curious weapons
from abroad.

As we follow our guide about the cramped little rooms and up the narrow,
twisting stairways, we cannot but think that the place is much more like
a jail or prison than a gentleman's home--showing how the disturbed
conditions of the country affected domestic life. The caretaker is an
unusually communicative Scotchman, well-posted on everything connected
with Darnick Tower and its contents, and proves to be not without a
touch of sentiment. Taking from the glass case a rare old silver-mounted
pistol, he places it in the hands of the small boy of our party. "Now,
my lad, ye can always say that ye have held in your ain hands a pistol
that was ance carried by bonnie Prince Charlie himsel'." And we all
agree that it is no small thing for a boy to be able to say that; it
will furnish him with material for many flights of fancy--even if Prince
Charlie never saw the pistol. There are also some of Mary Stuart's
endless embroideries--we have seen enough of them to stock a good-sized
shop, but they may have all been genuine, since the poor queen had
nothing else to do for years and years. These are typical of Darnick's
treasures, which, with the rare old tower itself, may well claim an hour
of the Abbotsford tourist's time. And he may recall that Sir Walter
himself was greatly enamored of the old Peel and sought many times to
annex it to his estate, but the owner would never sell.


"Auld Reekie" has seldom been hospitable to us in the way of weather. Of
our many visits--I forget how many--only one or two were favored with
sunny skies. The first I well recall, since we came to the old city on
our national holiday, only to find the temperature a little above
freezing and to encounter a bitter wind that seemed to pierce to the
very bone. And again we are watching the rain-drenched city from our
hotel window and wondering how we shall best pass such a dull day. We
are familiar with the show-places of the town--we have seen the castle,
Holyrood, John Knox's house, St. Giles, the galleries, the University,
Scott's monument and his town house on Castle Street where "Waverley"
was written--all these and many other places of renown have no longer
the charm of novelty. We don our rain-proofs and call at the studio of
an artist friend, who conducts us to the Academy exhibit, where we
discover the beautiful "Harvest Time, Strathtay," which adorns this
book. We confess a weakness for antique-shops, especially those where a
slender purse stands some show, and our friend leads us to the oddest
curio-shop we have seen in our wanderings. It is entered from an
out-of-the-way inner court by a dark, narrow flight of stairs and once
inside you must pause a moment to get your bearings. For piled
everywhere in promiscuous heaps, some of them reaching to the ceiling,
is every conceivable article that one might expect to find in such a
place, as well as a thousand and one that he would never expect to see.
From a dark corner issues the proprietor, an alert, gray-bearded old
gentleman who we soon find is an authority in his line and, strange to
say, all this endless confusion is order to him, for he has no
difficulty in laying his hands on anything he seeks. He shows us about
the dimly lighted place, descanting upon his wares, but making little
effort to sell them. We are free to select the few articles that strike
our fancy--there is no urging and few suggestions on his part; he names
the modest price and the deal is completed. When we come to leave we are
surprised to find that we have lingered in the queer old shop a couple
of hours.

  From original painting by Henderson Tarbet. R. S. A. Exhibit, Edinburgh,

Edinburgh shops, especially on Princes Street, are handsome, large and
well-stocked and are only second to the historic shrines with the
average tourist. The town is a great publishing center and there are
bookstores where the bibliophile might wish to linger indefinitely.
Scotch plaids and tartans are much in evidence wherever textiles are
sold and jewelers will show you the cairngorm first of all--a yellow
quartz-crystal found in the Highland hills. Such things are peculiarly
Scotch and of course are in great favor with the souvenir-seeking

The rain ceases towards evening and from our hotel window we have a fine
prospect of the city. It is clean and fresh after the heavy drenching
and glistens in the declining sun, which shines fitfully through the
breaking clouds. There have been many poetical eulogies and descriptions
since Burns addressed his lines to "Edina, Scotia's Darling Seat," but
W. E. Henley's "From a Window in Princes Street" seems to us most
faithfully to give the impression of the city as we see it now:

                 "Above the crags that fade and gloom
                 Starts the bare knee of Arthur's seat:
                 Ridged high against the evening bloom,
                 The Old Town rises, street on street;
                 With lamps bejewelled; straight ahead
                 Like rampired walls the houses lean,
                 All spired and domed and turreted,
                 Sheer to the valley's darkling green;
                 While heaped against the western grey,
                 The Castle, menacing and severe,
                 Juts gaunt into the dying day;
                 And in the silver dusk you hear,
                 Reverberated from crag and scar,
                 Bold bugles blowing points of war."

We watch the changing view until the twilight gathers and the lamps
begin to appear here and there.

We are bound for the heart of the Highlands. Our route is to lead
through the "Kingdom of Fife" to Perth and from thence to Braemar, the
most famous Scotch inland resort. Having already crossed the Forth at
Queensferry, we decide to take the Granton-Burntisland boat, which
crosses the estuary some six miles farther east. We find excellent
provision for the transport of motor cars and our boat carries three
besides our own. Landing at Burntisland, we follow the coast through
Kirkcaldy to Largo.

The attraction at the latter place is a little antique-shop close by the
roadside in the village where two years before we found what we thought
astonishing bargains in old silver, and our judgment was confirmed by an
Edinburgh silversmith to whom we afterwards showed our purchases. The
shopman had little of his wares in sight when we entered, but he kept
bringing out article after article from some hidden recess until he had
an amazing array before us. There was old silver galore, much of it
engraved with armorial devices which the dealer said he had purchased at
public auctions where the effects of old families were being turned into
cash--not an uncommon occurrence in Britain these days. His prices were
much less than those of city shops, and we were so well pleased with our
few selections on our first visit that we think it worth while to visit
Largo again. The shopman has not forgotten us and our finds are quite as
satisfactory as before. And I must say that of all the odds and ends
which we have acquired in our twenty-thousand miles of motoring in
Europe, our old silver gives us the greatest satisfaction. It is about
the safest purchase one can make, since the hall-mark guarantees its
genuineness and it has a standard value anywhere. It cannot be bought to
advantage in cities or tourist centers, where high prices are always
demanded. The same conditions will doubtless prevail in the more remote
country villages as the motor car brings an increased number of buyers.

From Largo we traverse narrow byroads to Cupar, the county town of Fife.
It is substantially built of gray stone and slate, but is not of much
historic importance. The surrounding country is well-tilled and
prosperous and there are many fine country houses which may occasionally
be seen from the highroad. We hasten on to Newburgh and from thence to
Perth, where we stop for luncheon at the splendid Station Hotel. The day
has so far been clear and cool, but during our stop there comes a sudden
dash of summer rain and a sharp drop in temperature--not a very
favorable augury of fine weather in the Highlands, whither we are bound.
Perth does not detain us, for despite its old-time importance and
antiquity, scarce a vestige remains of its once numerous monastery
chapels, castles and noblemen's houses. Perhaps the iconoclastic spirit
inspired by old John Knox, who preached in Perth, may be partly
responsible for this, or it may be as a Scotch writer puts it: "The
theory which seems to prevail in the Fair City is that the Acropolis of
Athens would be better out of the way if grazing for a few goats could
be got on the spot; and the room of the historic buildings was always
preferred to their company when any pretext could be found for
demolishing them." The home ascribed to Scott's "Fair Maid," restored
out of all knowledge, serves the plebian purpose of a bric-a-brac shop
and there is nothing but common consent to connect it with the heroine
of the novel. The fair maid indeed may have been but a figment of the
great writer's imagination, but the sturdy armorer certainly lived in
Perth and became famous for the marvelous shirts of mail which he

Our route lies due north from Perth, a broad and smooth highway as far
as Blairgowrie, near which is another original of the "Tullyveolan" of
"Waverley"--the second or third we have seen. Here we plunge into the
Highland hills, following a narrow stone-strewn road which takes us
through barren moors and over steep rough hills, on many of which
patches of snow still linger, seemingly not very far away. Its presence
is felt, too, for the air is uncomfortably chilly. The low-hung clouds
seem to threaten more snow and we learn later that snow actually fell
during the previous week. For thirty miles there is scarcely a human
habitation save one or two little inns which have rather a forlorn look.
The road grows steadily worse and the long "hairpin curves" of the road
on the famous "Devil's Elbow" will test the climbing abilities of any

While we are struggling with the steep, stony slopes and sharp turns of
the Devil's Elbow, a driving rain begins and pursues us relentlessly for
the rest of the day. The country would be dreary enough in the broad
sunshine, but under present conditions it is positively depressing. The
huge Invercauld Arms at Braemar is a welcome sight, though it proves
none too comfortable; so cold and cheerless is the evening that every
part of the hotel except the big assembly room, where a cheerful fire
blazes in the ample grate, seems like a refrigerator. The guests
complain bitterly of the unseasonable weather and one lady inquires of
another, evidently a native:

"What in the world do you do here in winter if it is like this in July?"

"Do in winter? We sit and hug the fireplace and by springtime we are all
just like kippered herring!"

Braemar has lost much of the popularity it enjoyed in Victoria's day,
when as many as ten thousand people came to the town and vicinity during
the Queen's residence at Balmoral, some ten miles away. She was fond of
the Highlands and remained several weeks, but King Edward did not share
her liking for Balmoral and was an infrequent visitor. The British have
the summer-resort habit to a greater extent than any other people and
Braemar still has considerable patronage during the season--from June to
September. The surroundings are quite picturesque; wooded hills,
towering cliffs and dashing streams abound, but one who has seen America
would hardly count the scenery remarkable. There is nothing to detain us
in Braemar and the next morning finds us early on the road. The day
promises fine, though of almost frosty coolness, and the roads in places
are muddy enough to remind us of home.

Braemar Castle, a quaint, towerlike structure near the town, attracts
our attention and we find no difficulty in gaining entrance, for the
family is away and the housekeeper is only too anxious to show visitors
around in hopes of adding to her income. It proves of little interest,
having recently been rebuilt into a summer lodge, the interior being
that of an ordinary modern residence. The exterior, however, is very
striking and the castle was of some consequence in the endless wars of
the Highland clans.

A few miles over a road overhung by trees and closely following the
brawling Dee brings us in sight of Balmoral. Our first impression is of
disappointment, since the castle seems but small compared with our
preconceived ideas, formed, of course, from the many pictures we have
seen. It has no traditions to attract us and as considerable formality
is necessary to gain admission on stated days only, we do not make the
attempt. The situation, directly on the river bank, is charming, and the
park surrounding the castle is well-groomed. We hie us on to Ballater, a
pretty, well-built village occupying a small plateau surrounded by
towering hills. But a mile or two from the town is the house where Byron
as a boy spent his vacations with his mother, and there are many
references in his poems to the mountains and lakes of the vicinity.
Lochnagar, which inspired his well-known verses, is said to be the
wildest and most imposing, though not the loftiest, of Scotch mountains.
It is the predominating peak between Braemar and Ballater. For some
miles on each side of Ballater the road runs through pine forests, which
evidently yield much of the lumber supply in Britain, for sawmills are
quite frequent. The trees are not large and they are not slaughtered
after the wholesale manner of American lumbering.

 [Illustration: A HIGHLAND LOCH
  From original painting by the late John MacWhirter, R. A.]

The Palace Hotel in Aberdeen is well-vouched-for officially--by the
Royal Automobile Club, the Automobile Association and an "American
Touring Club" which is new to us--and we reckon, from the first mention
in Baedeker, that it takes precedence of all others. It is conducted by
the Great North of Scotland Railway and is quite excellent in its way,
though not cheap or even moderate in rates. At dinner our inquisitive
waiter soon learns that we are not new to Aberdeen; we have seen most of
the sights, but we have to admit that we have missed the fish-market.

"Then ye haven't seen the biggest sight in the old town," said he.
"Seven hunder tons of fish are landed every day at the wharves and sold
at auction. Get down early in the morning and ye'll aye have a fish
story to tell, I'll warrant."

And it proves an astonishing sight, to be sure. A great cement wharf a
mile or more in length is rapidly being covered with finny tribes of all
degrees, sorted and laid in rows according to size. They range from
small fish such as sole and bloater to huge monsters such as cod,
haddock and turbot, some of which might weigh two or three hundred
pounds. It would take a naturalist, or an experienced deep-sea
fisherman, to name the endless varieties; it is a hopeless task for us
to try to remember the names of even a few of them. The harbor is filled
with fishing craft waiting to unload their catch, and when one boat
leaves the wharf its place is quickly occupied by another. And this is
not all the fish-show of Aberdeen, for herring and mackerel are brought
in at another dock. We return to our hotel quite willing to concede our
waiter-friend's claim that the tourist who does not see the fish-market
misses, if not the "biggest," as he styled it, certainly the most
interesting sight in Aberdeen.

We linger a few hours about the town, which is one of the cleanest and
most substantially built it has been our good fortune to see. It shows
to best advantage on a sunny day after a rain, when its mica-sprinkled
granite walls glitter in the sun, and its clean, granite-paved streets
have an unequalled attractiveness about them. Granite has much to do
with Aberdeen's wealth and stateliness, for it is found in unlimited
quantities near at hand and quarrying, cutting and polishing forms one
of the greatest industries of the place. Civic pride is strong in
Aberdeen and there are few cities that have greater justification for
such a sentiment, either on account of material improvement or thrifty
and intelligent citizens.


                      IN SUTHERLAND AND CAITHNESS

It is a wild, thinly inhabited section--this strangely named
Sutherland--lying a thousand miles nearer the midnight sun than does New
York City; but its silver lochs, its clear, dashing streams and its
unrivalled vistas of blue ocean and bold, rugged islands and highlands
will reward the motorist who elects to brave its stony trails and
forbiddingly steep hills. Despite its loneliness and remoteness, it is
not without historic and romantic attractions and its sternly simple
people widely scattered throughout its dreary wastes in bleak little
villages or solitary shepherd cottages, are none the less interesting
and pleasant to meet and know.

The transient wayfarer can hardly conceive how it is possible for the
natives to wrest a living from the barren hills and perhaps it does not
come so much from the land as from the cold gray ocean that is
everywhere only a little distance away. Fishing is the chief industry of
the coast villages, while the isolated huts in the hills are usually the
homes of shepherds. The population of Sutherland proper is sparse indeed
and one will run miles and miles over the rough trails which serve as
roads with rarely a glimpse of human habitation. No railway reaches the
interior or the western coast and the venturesome motorist will often
find himself amid surroundings where a break-down would surely mean
disaster--a hundred miles or more from effective assistance. The
precipitous hills and stony roads afford conditions quite favorable to
mishap, and for this reason the highways of Sutherland are not
frequented by motor cars and probably never will be until a different
state of affairs prevails. The Royal Automobile Club, however, has
mapped a fairly practicable route, following roughly the coast line of
the shire, and with this valuable assistance, we are told, a
considerable number of motorists undertake the trip during the course of
the summer.

The name Sutherland--for the most northerly shire of a country which
approaches the midnight sun--strikes one queerly; a Teutonic name for
the most distinctly Celtic county in Scotland--both anomalies to puzzle
the uninformed. But it was indeed the "land of the south" to the
Norsemen who approached Scotland from the north, and landing on the
shores of Caithness, they styled the bleak hills to the south as
"Sudrland." There was not much to tempt them to the interior, the good
harbors of Caithness and the produce of its fertile plains being the
objective of these hardy "despots of the sea." The county of Caithness
contains the greater part of the tillable land north of Inverness and
this, with the extensive fisheries, supports a considerable population.
The traveler coming from the south finds a pleasant relief in this wide
fertile plain with its farmhouses and villages and its green fields
dotted with sleek domestic animals. It was this prosperity that
attracted the Norseman in olden days and he it was who gave the name to
this county as well as to Sutherland--Caithness, from the "Kati," as the
inhabitants styled themselves.

We leave the pleasant city of Inverness on a gray misty morning upon--I
was going to say--our "Highland tour." But Inverness itself is well
beyond the northern limit of the Highland region of Scott and the
wayfaring stranger in Scotland to-day can hardly realize that the
activities of Rob Roy were mostly within fifty miles of Glasgow. A
hundred years ago the country north of the Great Glen was as remote from
the center of life in Scotland as though a sea swept between. To-day we
think of everything beyond Stirling or Dundee as the "Wild Scottish
Highlands," and I may as well adopt this prevailing notion in the tale I
have to tell.

For the first half hour the splendid road is obscured by a lowering fog
which, to our delight, begins to break away just as we come to Cromarty
Firth, which we follow for some dozen miles. The victorious sunlight
reveals an entrancing scene; on the one hand the opalescent waters of
the firth, with the low green hills beyond, and on the other the
countryside is ablaze with the yellow broom. Dingwall, at the head of
the firth, is a clean, thriving town, quite at variance with our
preconceived ideas of the wild Highlands; and a like revelation awaits
us at Tain, with its splendid inn where we pause for luncheon on our
return a few days later. It is built of rough gray stone and its
internal appointments as well as its service are well in keeping with
its imposing exterior. But an excellent inn, seemingly out of all
proportion to the needs of a town or the surrounding country, need
surprise no one in Scotland--such, indeed, is the rule rather than the

At Bonar Bridge--the little town no doubt takes its name from the sturdy
structure spanning Dornoch Firth--we cross into Sutherland and for the
next hundred miles we are seldom out of sight of the sea. An ideal day
we have for such a journey; the air is crystal clear, cool and bracing.
The unsullied skies meet a still, shimmering sea on one hand and bend in
a wide arch over gray-green hills on the other. Before our journey ends
cloud effects add to the weird beauty of the scenes that greet our
eyes--a play of light and color sweeping across the mottled sky and the
quiet ocean. We are enchanted by one particularly glorious view as we
speed along the edge of a cliff far above the ocean that frets and
chafes beneath; a bank of heavy white clouds is shot through by the
crimson rays of the declining sun; it seemingly rests on the surface of
the still water and is reflected with startling brilliance in the lucent
depths. Every mood of the skies finds a response in the ocean--gray,
steely-blue, silver-white, crimson and gold, all prevail in turn--until,
as we near our destination, the sky again is clear and the sea glows
beneath a cloudless sunset.

In a sheltered nook by the ocean, which here ripples at the foot of a
bleak hill, sits Golspie, the first village of any note after crossing
Dornoch Firth. It has little to entitle it to distinction besides its
connection with Dunrobin Castle--the great Gothic pile that looms above
it. Dunrobin is the seat of the Duke of Sutherland and Golspie is only
the hamlet of retainers and tradesmen that usually attaches itself to a
great country seat. It is clean and attractive and its pleasant inn by
the roadside at once catches our eye--for our luncheon time is already
well past. And there are few country inns that can vie with the
Sutherland Arms of Golspie, even in a land famous for excellent country
inns. A low, rambling stone building mantled with ivy and climbing roses
and surrounded by flowers and green sward, with an air of comfort and
coziness all about it, mutely invites the wayfarer to enjoy its
hospitality. The interior is equally attractive and there are evidences
that the inn is a resort for the fisherman and hunter as well as for the

It is of little consequence that luncheon time is two hours past; the
Scottish inn keeps open house all day and the well-stocked kitchen and
sideboard stand ready to serve the wayfarer whenever he arrives. The
sideboard, with its roast beef, mutton and fowls, would of itself
furnish a substantial repast; and when this is supplemented by a salad,
two or three vegetables, including the inevitable boiled potatoes, with
a tart or pudding for dessert, one would have to be more particular than
a hungry motorist to find fault. The landlady personally looks after our
needs--which adds still more to the homelikeness of the inn--and as we
take our leave we express our appreciation of the entertainment she has
afforded us. She plucks a full-blown rose from the vine which clings to
the gray walls and gives it to the lady member of our party, saying:

"Would you believe that the roses bloom on this wall in December?
Indeed, they do, for Golspie is so sheltered by the hills and the
climate is so tempered by the ocean currents that we never have really
severe weather."

And this is nearly a thousand miles north of the latitude of New York

The day is too far advanced to admit of a visit to Dunrobin Castle,
despite the lure of its thousand years of eventful history. It stands on
a commanding eminence overlooking the sea, its pinnacled turrets and
battlements sharply fretted against the sky. Its style savors of the
French chateau, though there are enough old Scottish details to redeem
it from the domination of the foreign type, and, altogether, it is one
of the stateliest of the homes of the Highland nobility. It has been in
the unbroken possession of the present family for nearly a thousand
years, having been originally built by Robert, Thane of Sutherland, in
1098. Its isolation no doubt saved it from the endless sieges and
consequent ruin that so many ancient strongholds underwent.

From Golspie to Wick we are seldom out of sight of the ocean and there
are many pleasing vistas from the clifflike hills which the finely
engineered road ascends in long sweeping curves. The entire road from
Inverness to Wick ranks with the best in Scotland, but beyond--that is
another story. The villages along the way are inhabited by fishermen,
many of whom speak only Gaelic, and they are always civil towards the
stranger. Especially do we notice this when we pass groups of children;
they are always smiling and waving welcome in a manner that recalls in
sharp contrast the sullen little hoodlums in the French and German
towns. The country houses, though small and plain, are clean and solidly
built of stone. Many well-bred domestic animals are to be seen,
especially sheep. In this connection I recall a conversation I had with
a young Montana ranchman whom I met on a train near Chicago. He had just
sold his season's wool clip in that city and realized the highest price
of the year--and he had imported his stock from Caithness, where he
formerly lived.

Wick is celebrated for its herring fisheries, upon which nearly the
whole population of about twelve thousand is directly or indirectly
dependent. It is the largest town north of Inverness and of some
commercial importance. The artificial harbor was built at an immense
cost and when the fisher fleet is in presents a forest of masts. On
Mondays the boats depart for the fishing grounds, most of them remaining
out for the week. Some of the boats are of considerable size and a
single catch may comprise many tons of herrings. The unsavory work of
cleaning and curing is done by women, who come from all parts of the
country during the fishing season.

Logically, Wick should mark the conclusion of our day's journey, which
is of unusual length, and the huge Station Hotel is not uninviting, but
we hasten farther, to fare--so far as accommodations are concerned--very
considerably worse. John O'Groats is our destination. We have long been
fascinated by the odd name at the far northern extremity of the map of
Scotland--a fascination increased by the recurrence of the name in
Scotch song and story--and it pleases our fancy to pass the night at
John O'Groats. A friendly officer assures us that we will find an
excellent hotel at our goal and with visions of a well-ordered resort
awaiting our arrival we soon cover the dozen or more miles of level
though bumpy road between Wick and the Scotch Ultima Thule. The country
is green and prosperous--no hint of the rocky hills and barren moors
that have greeted us most of the day.

A half mile from the tiny village of John O'Groats--a dozen or more low
stone huts--we come to the hotel and our spirits sink as we look about
us. A small two-story building with an octagonal tower faces the lonely
sea and it is soon evident that we are the sole guests for the night.
Two unattractive young women apparently constitute the entire force of
the inn; they are manageresses, cooks, waitresses, chambermaids and even
"porteresses," if I may use such a word, for they proceed to remove our
baggage and to carry it to our room. This is in the octagonal tower,
fronting on the ocean, and is clean and orderly; but the dinner which
our fair hostesses set forth precludes any danger of gormandizing,
ravenously hungry though we happen to be. The dining-room occupies the
first floor of the octagonal tower, which stands on the supposed site of
the original house of John O'Groat, or John de Groote, the Dutchman
whose fame is commemorated by a tradition which one must hear as a
matter of course if he visits the spot.

 [Illustration: HOTEL, JOHN O'GROATS]

John de Groote, a wealthy Hollander, is supposed to have established
himself in Caithness in the time of James IV. to engage in commerce with
the natives. As he was a person of importance, he brought with him a
number of retainers, who held an annual feast in celebration of their
arrival in Scotland. At this there were bickerings and heart-burnings as
to who should occupy "the head of the table"--an honor that was made
much of in those days. Wise old John de Groote pacified his jealous
guests as best he could, assuring them that at their next gathering all
should be equally honored and satisfied. He must have been a man of
influence, for his enigmatical assurance seems to have been accepted by
all. When the eight petty chieftains assembled again they beheld an
octagonal house with eight doors and in it was a huge octagonal table
with seats at each side for the jealous clansmen and their retainers. As
they must enter simultaneously and as no one could possibly be exalted
above his fellows, the question of precedence could not arise. And so
John O'Groat gave his name to eternal fame--but if this strange domicile
ever existed, all trace of it has disappeared, and the question of
precedence does not trouble our little party nearly so much as the
indifferent dinner, which we make but a poor pretense at eating.

One will hardly find a lonelier or more melancholy scene--at least so it
seems to us this evening--than the wide sweep of water confronting us
when we look seaward from the sandy beach that slopes downward from the
inn. Near at hand is a bold headland--the small rocky island of
Stroma--while the dim outlines of the southernmost Orkneys rise a few
miles away. No ship or sign of life is to be seen except two
crab-fishers, who are rowing to the little landing-place. The beach is
littered with thousands of dead crabs and masses of seaweed cling to the
wreckage scattered along the water line. All is quiet and serene as the
nightlong twilight settles down, save for the occasional weird scream of
some belated sea-bird. The sun does not set until after nine o'clock and
on clear nights one may read print at midnight under the open skies. And
it is with an odd feeling, when awakened by the rising sun streaming
into our windows, that I find on looking at my watch that the hour of
three is just past.

At the risk of being set down as heathen by the natives, who observe
Sunday even more strictly than their southern brethren, we are early on
the road. Our breakfast, hastily prepared by our hostesses, gives us
added incentive for severing relations with John O'Groats. We settle our
modest score--our inn has the merit of cheapness, at least--act as our
own porter--saving a shilling thereby--and soon sally forth on the fine
road to Thurso.

The glorious morning soon effaces all unpleasant recollections. The road
runs for miles in sight of the sea, which shows a gorgeous color effect
in the changing light--deep indigo-blue, violet, amethyst, sapphire, all
seem to predominate in turn, and the crisp breeze shakes the shimmering
surface into millions of jewellike ripples. In sheltered nooks under the
beetling crags of the shore the water lies a sheet of dense lapis-lazuli
blue such as one sees in pictures but seldom in nature. On the other
hand are the green fields, which evidence an unexpected fertility in
this far northern land.

But the scene changes--almost suddenly. Leaving the low, green meadows
of western Caithness, we plunge into the dark, barren hills of
Sutherland--a country as lonely and forbidding as any to be found within
the four seas that encircle Britain. The road--splendid for a dozen
miles out of Thurso--degenerates into a rough, rock-strewn trail that
winds among the hills, often with steep grades and sharp turns. At some
points where the road branches a weather-worn stone gives an almost
illegible direction and at others there is nothing to assist the puzzled
traveler. At one of these it seems clear to us that the right-hand road
must lead to Tongue, and with some misgiving we take it. There is
absolutely no human being in sight--an inquiry is impossible. The road
grows so bad that we can scarce distinguish it and at last we catch
sight of a shepherd-cottage over the hill. Two elfish children on the
hilltop view us with open-mouthed wonder, but in response to our
inquiries flee away to the house. The shepherd comes out, Bible in hand;
he has no doubt been passing the morning in devotion at his home, since
the kirk is too far away for him to attend.

"The road to Tongue? Ah, an' it's a peety. Ye have ta'en the wrang turn
and the road ye are on leads to--just nowhere."

We thank him and carefully pilot our car backward for half a mile to
find a practicable place to turn about.

  From original painting by Henderson Tarbet]

We have passed a few little hamlets since we left Thurso--Melvich,
Strathy and Bettyhill--each made up of a few stone huts thatched with
boughs or underbrush of some kind and though cleanly and decent, their
appearance is poverty-stricken in the extreme. At Bettyhill we pass many
people laboriously climbing the long hill to the kirk which stands
bleakly on the summit--the entire population, old and young, appears to
be going to the service. They are a civil, kindly folk, always courteous
and obliging in their response to our inquiries, though we think we can
detect a latent disapproval of Sunday motoring--only our own guilty
consciences, perhaps. They seem sober and staid, even the youngsters--no
doubt only the Scotchman's traditional reverence for the Sabbath; though
one of the best informed Scotch writers thinks this mood is often
temperamental--a logical result of the stern surroundings that these
people see every day of their lives. For Mr. T. F. Henderson in his
"Scotland of Today" writes of the very country through which we are

"With all their dreariness there is something impressive in these long
stretches of lonely moorland, something of the same feeling that comes
over one, you fancy, in the Sahara. As a stranger you will probably see
them in the summertime. There is then the endless weird light of the
northern sunrise and sunset, there is the charm of the sunlight; and
nature using such magic effects is potent to infuse strange attractions
into the wilderness itself. But the infinite gloom of the days of
winter, the long periods of darkness, the rain-cloud and the storm-cloud
sweeping at their will over the wild moorland without any mountain
screen to break the storm! Can you wonder that men who spend their lives
amid such scenes become gloomy and taciturn, and that sadness seems
inseparable from such surroundings, and poverty inevitably appears twice
as cruel and harsh here as elsewhere?"

It is well past noon when the blue waters of the Kyle of Tongue flash
through the rugged notches of the hills and a few furlongs along the
shore bring us to the village of Tongue, with its hospitable inn. Though
Tongue is fifty miles from the nearest railway station, enough lovers of
the wild come here to make this pleasant, well-ordered inn a
possibility. We find it very attractive inside; the July day is fresh
and clear but chilly enough to make the fire burning in the diminutive
grate in the drawing-room very acceptable to us who have never become
really acclimated in Britain. But the same fire is evidently intended to
be more ornamental than useful, for the supply of coals is exceedingly
limited and they are fed into the grate in homeopathic doses. An
Australian lady--who with her husband, we learn later, is on a honeymoon
tour of Scotland--is even more sensitive to the chill than ourselves and
ends the matter by dumping the contents of the scuttle on the fire and,
like Oliver Twist, calling for more. Oliver's request possibly did not
create greater consternation among his superiors than this demand
dismayed our hostess, for coals might well be sold by troy instead of
avoirdupois in Tongue. The supply must come by coast steamer from the
English mines and the frequent handling and limited demand send the
price skyward. The Australian lady's energetic act insures that the room
will be habitable for the rest of the day--though it is easy to see that
some of the natives think it heated to suffocation.

At dinner our host, a hale, full-bearded Scotchman, sits at the head of
the table and carves for his guests in truly patriarchal style. The meal
is a satisfying one, well-cooked and served; the linen is snowy white
and the silver carefully polished. We find the hotel just as
satisfactory throughout; the rooms are clean and well-ordered and the
whole place has a homelike air. It is evidently a haven for fishermen
during the summer season and these probably constitute the greater
number of guests. The entrance hall is garnished with many trophies of
rod and gun and, altogether, we may count Tongue Inn a unique and
pleasant lodge in a lonely land.

The following day--it is our own national holiday--we strike southward
through the Sutherland moors. The country is bleak and unattractive,
though the road proves better than we expected. For several miles it
closely follows the sedgy shores of Loch Loyal, a clear, shimmering
sheet of water a mile in width, set in a depression of the moorland
hills. The Sutherland lochs have little in their surroundings to please
the eye; their greatest charm is in the relief their bright, pellucid
waters afford from the monotony of the brown moors. There are many of
these lakes, ranging in size from little tarns to Loch Shin--some
seventy miles in length. We pass several in course of our morning's run,
and cross many clear, dashing streams, but there is little else to
attract attention in the forty miles to Bonar Bridge.

Lairg is the only village on the way, a group of cottages clustered
about an immense hotel which is one of the noted Scotch resorts for
fishermen. It is situated at the southern extremity of Loch Shin, where,
strange to say, fishing is free--not a common state of affairs with the
Scotch lochs. It is famous for its trout and salmon, though it is
decidedly lacking in picturesqueness, one writer describing it as
"little better than a huge ditch."

  From original painting by the late John MacWhirter, R. A.]

From Bonar Bridge southward we retrace the broad, level road that we
followed out of Inverness, and from the opposite direction the green and
thriving countryside presents quite a new aspect. We have often remarked
that it is seldom a hardship to retrace our way over a road through an
interesting country. The different viewpoint is sure to reveal beauties
that we have missed before. One cannot complain that the country here
lacks attractions--there are many famous excursions to the lochs and
glens and one of the most delightful is the ten-mile drive to Glen
Affrick, which may be taken from Beauly. Mr. MacWhirter's picture shows
a view of the dashing river--and I recall that the great artist, when
showing me the original, remarked that if one were asked to guess, he
would hardly locate Glen Affrick in the Scotch Highlands, so strongly
suggestive of the Dark Continent is the name.


                          DOWN THE GREAT GLEN

That we had once--under the guidance of that patron saint of tourists,
Thos. Cook--made the regulation boat trip down the Caledonian Lakes and
Canal, in no wise lessens our eagerness to explore the Great Glen by
motor car. On a previous occasion we reluctantly gave up the run from
Inverness to Oban because of stories of inconvenient and even dangerous
ferries; but recent information from the Royal Automobile Club shows
that while only a few attempt the journey, it is entirely practicable.
The English motorist, accustomed to perfect roads and adequate ferry
service, is likely to magnify deviations from the best conditions, which
would be scarcely remarked upon by his American brother, to whom good
highways are the exception rather than the rule. And so it chanced that
the Great Glen acquired a rather unsavory reputation and only a few
Americans or an occasional venturesome native undertook the journey. At
the present time, I understand, the road and service have been so
improved that no one need hesitate in essaying this delightful trip.

 [Illustration: THE GREAT GLEN, SUNSET
  From original painting by Breanski]

Mr. George Eyre-Todd, a Scottish author, in a recently published book
gives some descriptive and historical information concerning the country
we are about to explore:

"Glen More na h' Albyn, the Great Glen of Scotland, stretching from the
Moray Firth southwestward to the Sound of Mull, cuts the Scottish
Highlands in two. For grandeur and variety of scenery--mountain and
glen, torrent and waterfall, inland lake and arm of the sea--it far
surpasses the Rhine; and though the German river, with its castled crags
and clustering mountain-towns, has been enriched by the thronged story
of many centuries, its interest even in that respect is fully matched by
the legends, superstitions and wild clan memories of this great lake
valley of the north. For him who has the key to the interests of the
region the long day's sail from Inverness to Oban unrolls a panorama of
unbroken charm.

"The Caledonian Canal, which links the lakes of this great glen, was a
mighty engineering feat in its day. First surveyed by James Watt in
1773, at the instance of the trustees of the forfeited estates, and
finally planned by Telford in 1804, it was begun by Government for
strategic purposes during the Napoleonic wars, and when finally opened
in 1847 had cost no more than a million and a quarter sterling. It has a
uniform depth of eighteen feet, and ships of thirty-eight feet beam and
a thousand tons burden can sail through it from one side of Scotland to
the other. In these peaceful times, however, the canal is very little
used. In autumn and spring the brown sails of fishing-boats pass through
in flights, and twice a day in summer the palace-steamers of David
Macbrayne sweep by between the hills. But for the rest of the time the
waters lap the lonely shores, the grey heron feeds at the burn mouths,
and sunshine and rain come and go along the great mountainsides, exactly
as they did in the days of Culloden or Inverlochy.

"The canal at first has the country of Clan Mackintosh, of which
Inverness may be considered the capital, on its left. At the same time,
down to Fort Augustus, it has the Lovat country on the right. Glengarry,
farther down, was the headquarters of the Macdonnells. South of that
lies the Cameron country, Lochaber and Lochiel. And below Fort William
stretches the Macdonald country. All these clans, in the '45, were
disaffected to Government, and followed the rising of Prince Charles

Inverness, with her bracing air and clear river, her beautiful island
park, well-stocked shops and wealth of romantic associations, will
always tempt one to linger, come as often as he may. It is our fourth
stop in the pleasant northern capital; we have tried the principal
hotels and we remember the Alexandra most favorably--though one
traveler's experiences may not be of great value in such a matter.
Individual tastes differ and a year or two may work a great change in an
inn for better or worse.

Within a dozen miles of Inverness one may find many historic spots. Few
will overlook Culloden Moor, with its melancholy cairn and its memories
of the final extinguishment of the aspirations of the Stuart line. Not
less interesting in a different way is Cawdor Castle, the grim
thirteenth-century pile linked to deathless fame in Shakespeare's
"Macbeth." There are drives galore to glens and resorts and you will not
be permitted to forget the cemetery, in which every citizen of the town
seems to take a lugubrious pride. Indeed, it is one of the most
beautiful burial grounds in the Kingdom. Crowning a great hill which
commands far-reaching views of valley and sea, it lacks nothing that art
and loving care can lavish upon it.

But Inverness, with all her charm, must not detain us longer. Our
journey, following the course of the lakes to Oban, begins in the early
morning; the distance is only one hundred and twenty miles, but they
tell us we are sure to experience considerable delay at the ferries. It
is a dull, misty morning and the drifting fog half hides the rippling
river which we follow some miles out of Inverness. By the time we reach
the shores of Loch Ness, the sunlight begins to struggle through the
mist which has enveloped everything and, to our delight, there is every
promise of a glorious day.

The lake averages a mile in width and for its entire length of nearly
twenty-five miles is never more than a few score yards from the road. It
is an undulating and sinuous road and one of the most dangerous in the
Kingdom for reckless drivers. Here it turns a sharp, hidden corner;
there it drops suddenly down a short, steep declivity into a dark little
glade; at times it winds through trees that press too closely to allow
vehicles to pass, and again it follows the edge of an abrupt cliff. Such
a road cannot be traversed too carefully, but, fortunately, to anyone
with an eye for the beauties of nature, there is no incentive to speed.
Every mile of the lake presents new aspects--a dark, dull mirror or a
glistening sheet of silver, and again a smiling expanse of blue, mottled
with reflections of fleecy white clouds. In one place it shows a strange
effect of alternating bars of light and shade sweeping from shore to
shore, a phenomenon which we are quite unable to understand. About
midway an old castle rises above the dark waters which reflect it with
all the fidelity of a mirror, for at this point the plummet shows a
depth of seven hundred feet. For six hundred years Castle Urquhart has
frowned above the lake and about it has gathered a long history of
romantic sieges and defenses, fading away into myth and legend. Its
sullen picturesqueness furnished a theme for the brush of Sir John
Millais, who was a frequent visitor to the Great Glen and an ardent
admirer of its scenery.


As we pursue the lakeside road, we find ourselves contrasting our former
trip by steamer, and we agree that the motor gives the best realization
of the beauties of landscape and loch. There are points of vantage along
the shore which afford views far surpassing any to be had from the dead
level of the steamer deck; the endless variations of light and color
playing over the still surface we did not see from the boat. There may
be much of fancy in this; everything to the motor enthusiast seems finer
and more enchanting when viewed from that queen of the road--the open

The old chroniclers have it that St. Columba traversed the Great Glen in
565 A. D. and they declare that he beached his boat near Kilchimien on
Loch Ness after having by his preaching and miracles converted the
Pictish kings. This is the first record of the introduction of
Christianity into the northern Highlands.

Fort Augustus marks the southern extremity of Loch Ness and here are the
great buildings of St. Benedict's Abbey and School, a famous Catholic
college patronized by the sons of the gentry and nobility of that faith.
The fort was built by the English a couple of centuries ago as a base of
offense against the adherents of the Stuarts in the vicinity, and we may
be sure that the fierce Highlanders did not permit the garrison to
suffer from inactivity.

At this point the road swings across the canal and follows the western
shores of Loch Oich and Loch Lochy. We miss the trees which border Loch
Ness; here we pass at the foot of high, barren hills over which, to the
southward, rises Ben Nevis, the loftiest of Scotch mountains. There is
not much of interest until we reach the vicinity of Fort William at the
northern end of Loch Linnhe. As we approach the town we catch glimpses
of the ivy-clad ruin of Inverlochy, one of the most ancient and romantic
of northern Scottish castles. A portion of the structure is supposed to
antedate the eighth century and it was long the residence of a line of
Pictish kings--kings, indeed, even though their subjects were but a
handful of ill-clad marauders. In any event, one of them, King Achaius,
was of enough importance to negotiate a treaty with ambassadors sent by
Charlemagne. It would be a long story to tell of the sieges and sallies,
of the fierce combats and dark tragedies that took place within and
about the walls of Inverlochy Castle; for in all its thousand years it
saw little of peace or quiet until after the fight at Culloden; and such
a story would accord well with the air of grim mystery that seems to
hover over the sullen old ruin to-day. Standing on the verge of the
still water, its massive round towers outlined against the rocky sides
of Ben Nevis, whose snow-flecked summit looms high over it, it seems the
very ideal of the home of chivalry, rude and barbarous though it may
have been.

Fort William, with its enormous hotels, shows the usual characteristics
of a Scottish resort town--but the attractions which bring guests to
fill such hotels are not apparent to us. More likely these are in the
neighborhood rather than in the town itself. We pause here in an
endeavor to get some authentic information concerning the ferry at
Ballachulish, for our doubts have been considerably aroused about it.
The office of the steamship company of David Macbrayne, who controls
nearly all the coastwise shipping in North Scotland, seems a likely
place and thither we hie ourselves. The canny Scot in charge assures us
that the ferry is exceedingly dangerous--that motors are transferred on
a row-boat and some day there will be a dreadful accident; he even
darkly hints that something of the sort has already occurred. The safe
and sane thing to do is to place our car aboard the next canal steamer,
which will land us in Oban in the course of five or six hours--and it
will cost us only three pounds plus transportation for ourselves. Shall
he book us and our car for the boat?

His eagerness to close the deal arouses our suspicion--besides, we have
done the Caledonian trip by boat before and are not at all partial to
the proposed plan. It occurs to us that the proprietor of a nearby
garage ought to be as well informed on this matter and more
disinterested than Mr. Macbrayne's obsequious representative.

"Cars go that way every little while," he says. "Not especially
dangerous--never had an accident that I know of."

Thus encouraged, we soon cover the dozen miles to the ferry. Our fine
weather has vanished and a drizzling rain is falling at intervals. At
the ferry we learn that the crossing can be made only at high tide,
which means four hours' wait amidst anything but pleasant surroundings.
There are two vehicles ahead of us--a motor and a small covered wagon
about which two miserably dirty and ragged little youngsters play,
regardless of the steady rain. A dejected man and a spiritless woman
accompany the wagon and soon respond to our friendly advances. They are
selling linoleum made in Aberfeldy--traveling about the country in the
wagon, stopping at cottages wherever a bit of their commodity is likely
to be in demand. It is a pitiful story of poverty and privation, of days
without sales enough to provide food, and of cold, wet nights by the
roadside. If the end of the trip finds them even they are well content,
but more often they are in debt to the makers of the linoleum.

There are thousands of others, they tell us, gaining a precarious
living, like themselves, though of course not all selling the same
commodity. When they see our annoyance at the delay, they offer to yield
us their turn in crossing, which we gladly accept, for it affords an
excuse for a gratuity, which we feel our chance acquaintances sorely

In the meantime the tide is flowing swiftly through the narrow strait
which connects Loch Leven with the wide estuary of Loch Linnhe and our
boat approaches from the opposite side. Four men are rowing vigorously
and as the small craft grates alongside the slippery granite pier, one
would never choose it as a fit transport for a heavy motor. It is about
twenty feet in length by ten or a dozen wide; two stout planks are
placed crosswise and two more form a runway from the sloping landing,
and, altogether, the outlook is rather discouraging to anyone so
prejudiced in favor of the terra firma as ourselves. We are half tempted
to retrace our journey to Fort William, but fortunately, the two young
men who have preceded us in a large runabout furnish an object lesson
that proves the trick not nearly so difficult as it looks. We follow
suit in our turn and our car, by a little careful jockeying, is soon
nicely balanced on the planks in the center of the boat. We express
surprise that the added weight seems scarcely to affect the displacement
of the craft. "O, ay,--she'll carry twelve ton," says one of the men who
overhears us. So the two tons of the car is far from the limit, after
all. It is a strong pull, well out of the direct line in crossing, for
the tide is running like a mill-race and would sweep us many furlongs
down the shore were not due allowance made by the rowers. The landing is
easier than the embarking, and we are soon away at something more than
the lawful pace for Benderloch Station, where another crossing must be


We might have wished to take the right-hand road to Glencoe, only a few
miles from Ballachulish--mournful Glencoe, with its memories of one of
the darkest deeds that stain the none too spotless page of Scottish
history. For here the bloody Cumberland, acting upon explicit orders
from the English throne, sent a detachment of soldiers under the guise
of friends seeking the hospitality of Clan Macdonald, which received
them with open arms. The captain of the troop was an uncle of the young
chieftain's wife, which served still farther to win the utmost
confidence of the unsuspecting clansmen. For two weeks the guests
awaited fit opportunity for their dastardly crime, when they murdered
their host in the very act of providing for their entertainment and
dealt death to all his clan and kin, regardless of age or sex. A few
escaped to the hills, only to perish miserably from the rigors of the
Scottish midwinter. Such is the sad tale of Glencoe, where to-day a tall
granite shaft commemorates the victims of the treacherous deed.

A hundred tales might be told of the Great Glen--true tales--did our
space permit. Here Bonnie Prince Charlie marshalled his forces and made
his last stand in his struggle for the throne of his fathers. In 1745,
at Gairlochy, near Fort William, the royal adventurer organized the
nucleus of the army which was to capture Edinburgh and throw all the
Kingdom into consternation by its incursion into England. Here he
planned a battle with General Cope, who avoided the encounter, a move
which gave great impetus to the insurrection. Charles was in high
feather and passed a night in revelry at Invergarry Castle with the
Highland chieftains, who already imagined their leader on the highway to
the British throne. Less than a year later the prince again sought
Invergarry in his flight from Culloden's fatal field, but he found the
once hospitable home of the chief of Glengarry empty and dismantled and
so surrounded by enemies that, weary and despairing as he was, he still
must hasten on. Two weeks later, after a score of hairbreadth escapes,
the royal fugitive left Scotland--as it proved, forever.

We did not at the time reflect very deeply on these bits of historic
lore; the rain was falling and the winding, slippery road required close
attention. Much of the scenery was lost to us, but the gloomy evening
was not without its charm. The lake gleamed fitfully through the
drifting mists and the brown hills were draped with wavering cloud
curtains. Right behind us rose the mighty form of Ben Nevis, on whose
summit flecks of snow still lingered. The wildness of the country was
accentuated by the forbidding aspect of the weather, but we regretted it
the less since our former trip had been under perfect conditions.

At Benderloch Station we found a railway motor van and flat car awaiting
us, in response to our telephone message from Ballachulish. Our motor
was speedily loaded on the car, while we occupied seats in the van, an
arrangement provided for motorists by the obliging railway officials.
All this special service costs only fifteen or twenty shillings; but no
doubt the railroad people established the rate to compete with the ferry
across Loch Creran Inlet. They set us down safe and sound on the other
side of the estuary, and we soon covered the few remaining miles to
Oban, where we needed no one to direct us to the Station Hotel, for we
learned on a former visit that it is one of the best-ordered inns in the
North Country.


                          ALONG THE WEST COAST

The day following our arrival in Oban dawns clear and bright with that
indescribable freshness that follows summer rain in the Highlands. We
find ourselves loath to leave the pleasant little town, despite the fact
that two former visits have somewhat detracted from the novelty of the
surroundings. We could never weary of the quiet, land-locked harbor,
with its shimmering white sails and ranges of green and purple hills
beyond, or of the ivy-clad ruin of Dunolly that overhangs the waters
when looking up the bay. The town ascends the steep hill in terraces and
a climb to the summit is well rewarded by the splendid view. One also
sees at close range the monstrous circular tower which dwarfs everything
else in Oban and which one at first imagines must have some great
historic significance. But the surmise that it was the work of ancient
Romans in an effort to duplicate the Coliseum is dashed when we learn
that Oban is scarcely a hundred years old and that "McCaig's Folly" was
built after the foundation of the town. An eccentric native conceived
the idea of erecting this strange structure "to give employment to his
fellow-townsmen" and dissipated a good-sized fortune in the colossal
gray-stone pile. Its enormous proportions can only be realized when one
stands within the walls, which form an exact circle possibly two hundred
feet in diameter and range from fifty to seventy-five feet in height.

 [Illustration: "McCAIG'S FOLLY," OBAN]

While the town itself is modern, the immediate vicinity of Oban does not
lack for ancient landmarks. Dunstaffnage, with its traditions of Pictish
kings, is antedated by few Scottish castles and Dunolly is one of the
most picturesque. Kilchurn and Duarte, though farther away, are easily
accessible, and the former, on the tiny islet in Loch Awe, is one of the
most beautiful of Scottish ruins. There are few drives that afford
greater scenic charm than the circular trip past Loch Feochan and Loch
Melfort, returning by Loch Awe, and there is no steamer trip in the
Kingdom that excels in glorious scenery and historic interest the
eighty-mile excursion to Staffa and Iona. With such attractions it is
not strange that Oban is thronged with tourists during the short summer

But we have "done" nearly everything in our two previous visits and have
little excuse to linger. The only road out of the town, except the one
by which we came, drops southward through a country we have not yet
explored. Brown and barren hills greet us at first, relieved here and
there by the glitter of tiny lakes and by green dales with flocks of
grazing sheep. A touch of brilliant color is given to the landscape by
the great beds of blue and yellow flags, or fleur-de-lis, which cover
the marshy spots along the road. For several miles we skirt the shores
of Loch Feochan, a tidal lake whose blue-green waters are at their
height, making a beautiful picture with the purple hills as a

The tiny village of Kilninver stands at the inlet of the loch and here
the road re-enters the hills; there is a long steady climb up a steep
grade ere the summit is reached and in places the narrow road skirts a
sharp declivity, sloping away hundreds of feet to the valley beneath. We
fortunately escape an unpleasant adventure here; just at the summit we
find four men pushing an old-fashioned, high-wheeled car to the top of
the grade. It lost its driving-chain, they tell us, and as the brake
failed to work, narrowly missed dashing down the hill. Had it gone a rod
farther such a catastrophe would surely have occurred; not very pleasant
for us to contemplate, since at few places is there more than enough
room to pass a vehicle driven with care, let alone one running amuck!

The descent is not so abrupt and a long steady coast brings us to the
Pass of Melfort, where a swift mountain stream dashes between towering
cliffs. We run alongside until we again emerge on the sea-shore,
following the rugged coast of Loch Melfort for some miles. The road is
rough in places and passes a sparsely populated country with here and
there an isolated village, usually harsh and treeless. Kilmartin is the
exception--a rather cozy-looking hamlet with a huge old church
surrounded by fine trees. In Kilmartin Glen, near by, are numerous
prehistoric sculptured stones often visited by antiquarians. Thence to
Loch Gilphead the road is first-class; it crosses over the Crinan Canal,
through which steamers bound for Oban and Glasgow pass daily. Loch
Gilphead is a straggling fishing-town, its docks littered with nets and
the harbor crowded with small craft; its inn does not tempt us to pause,
though luncheon hour is well past.

For twenty miles or more we course along the wooded shores of Loch Fyne,
another of the long narrow inlets piercing the west Scottish coast. It
is a beautiful run; trees overarch the road and partly conceal the
gleaming lake, though at intervals we come upon the shore with an
unobstructed view of the rugged hills of the opposite side. Near the
head of the lake is Inverary, the pleasant little capital of Argyleshire
and as cleanly and well-ordered a village as one will find in Scotland.
The Argyle Arms, seemingly much out of proportion to the village, proves
a delightful place for our belated luncheon. No doubt the inn is
necessary to accommodate the retinues of the distinguished visitors at
Inverary Castle, which frequently include members of the royal family,
with which the present duke is connected by marriage. The modern castle
stands on an eminence overlooking town and loch and a smooth lawn
studded with splendid trees slopes to the road. The design is Gothic in
style, four-square, with pointed round towers at each corner, and the
interior is well in keeping with the magnificence of the outside.

The road we follow in leaving Inverary closely hugs the shores of Loch
Fyne for some miles and but a short way out of the town passes beneath
the ruin of Dunderawe Castle. Rounding the head of the loch, always
keeping near the shore, we strike eastward through the range of giant
hills that lie between Loch Fyne and Loch Lomond. It is a barren stretch
of country; the road is rough and stone-strewn, with many trying
grades--dangerous in places; long strenuous climbs heat the motor and
interminable winding descents burn the brakes. There is little to
relieve the monotony of the wild moorlands save a mountain stream
dashing far below the road or a tiny lake set in a hollow of the hills,
but never a village or seldom an isolated cottage for miles. Near the
summit is a rude seat with the inscription, "Rest and be thankful,"
erected long ago for the benefit of travelers who crossed the hills on
foot. The poet Wordsworth made this journey and described it in one of
his sonnets as "Doubling and doubling with laborious walk," ending in a
grateful allusion to the resting place.

We are glad to see the waters of Loch Lomond, glinting with the gold of
the sunset, flash through the trees, for we know that the lake-shore
road is good and one of the most beautiful in Scotland. Miles and miles
it follows the edge of the island-dotted loch, which broadens rapidly as
we course southward. The waters darken to a steel-blue mirror, but the
hills beyond are still touched with the last rays of the sun--a glorious
scene, not without the element of romance which adds to the pleasure one
so often experiences when contemplating Old Scotia's landscapes. It is
only by grace of the long twilight that we are able to reach Glasgow by
lamp-lighting time. Measured in miles, the day's run was not
extraordinary, but much of the road was pretty strenuous and tire
trouble has been above normal, so that the comfortable hotel of the
metropolis does not come amiss.

After a perfunctory round in Glasgow, our thoughts turn toward Ayr; even
though we have already made two pilgrimages to Burnsland, the spell is
unbroken and still would be though our two visits were two score. We
will not follow the Kilmarnock route again, but for the sake of variety
will go by Barrhead and Irvine on the sea. It proves a singularly
uninteresting road; Barrhead is mean and squalid, the small villages are
unattractive, and Irvine is a bleak, coal-shipping town. Irvine would be
wholly commonplace had not the poet James Montgomery honored it by
making it his birthplace and had not Bobby Burns struggled nearly a year
within its confines to earn a livelihood as a flax-dresser. The ill luck
that befell nearly all the poet's business ventures pursued him here,
for his shop burned to the ground and Irvine lost her now distinguished
citizen--though she little knew it then, for Burns was only twenty-two.
Perhaps it was a fortunate fire, after all, for had he prospered he
might have become more of a business man than poet, and the world be
infinitely poorer by the exchange. A colossal statue recently erected
commemorates his connection with Irvine and again reminds one how Burns
overshadows everything else in the Ayr country.

The Station Hotel affords such a convenient and satisfactory
stopping-place that we cut short our day's run after completing the
forty miles from Glasgow. There is really not much in the town itself to
detain the tourist; we wander down the main street and cross the "Twa
Brigs;" from the beach we admire the broad bay and the bold rocky "Heads
of Ayr" to the south. In the distance are the dim outlines of the
Emerald Isle, seen only on the clearest days, and nearer at hand the
Isles of Bute and Arran. The town is quite modern; there is considerable
manufacturing and ship-building and many of the landmarks of the time of
Burns have been obliterated.

Fortunate indeed is it that the shrines at Alloway have not shared the
same fate--a third visit to these simple memorials may seem superfluous,
but we must confess to a longing to see them all again. The birthplace,
Kirk Alloway, the monument, the Brig o' Doon and the museum, with its
priceless relics of the poet--all have a perennial interest for the
admirer of Burns and Scotland. The bare simple room where the poet was
born has a wealth of sentiment that attaches to few such places, and I
cannot forbear quoting Mr. George Eyre-Todd's little flight of fancy
inspired by this same primitive apartment:

"One can try," he writes, "to imagine the scene here on the afternoon of
that wild winter day when 'a blast o' Januar' win'' was to blow 'Hansel
in on Robin.' There would be the goodwife's spinning-wheel set back for
the nonce in a dark corner; the leglins, or milking-stools--on which the
bright-eyed boy was to sit a few years later--pushed under the deal
table; the wooden platters and bowls from which the household ate,
arranged in the wall rack, and the few delf dishes appearing in the
half-open aumrie or cupboard; while from the rafters overhead hung hanks
of yarn of the goodwife's spinning, a braxie ham, perhaps, and the
leathern parts of the horses' harness. Then, for the actors in the
humble scene, there was a shadowy figure and a faint voice in the
deep-set corner bed; the inevitable 'neighbour-woman' setting matters to
rights about the wide fireplace in the open chimney; and William Burness
himself, whip in hand, hurriedly getting into his heavy riding-coat to
face the blast outside.

"A glance at the face of the great eight-day clock, a whispered word and
a moment's pause as he bends within the shadow of the bed, while the
neighbour turns industriously to the fire, and then, with a pale face
and some wildness in the eyes, the husband makes off, over the uneven
floor of flags, and the door closes after him. In a minute or two the
tramp of the hoofs of his galloping mare dies away in the distance, and
the women are left, waiting.

"Behind him as he turned from his door on that wild day, the farmer
would hear the Doon thundering down its glen, and the storm roaring
through the woods about the ruin of Alloway Kirk, which his son's wild
fancy was afterwards to make the scene of such unearthly revels. The old
road to Ayr was narrower and more irregular, between its high hedges,
than the present one; and every step of the way had some countryside
memory belonging to it. Behind, by its well, where the road rose from
the steep river-bank among the trees, stood the thorn 'where Mungo's
mither hanged hersel'.' In the park of Cambusdoon an ash tree still
marks the cairn 'where hunters fand the murdered bairn.' Farther on, in
a cottage garden close by the road, is still to be seen that 'meikle
stane, where drucken Chairlie brak's neck bane.' And on the far side of
the Rozelle wood, a hundred yards to the left of the present road, was
'the ford where in the snaw the chapman smoor'd.'

"As William Burness reached the stream here a singular incident befell
him. On the farther side, when he had crossed, he found an old woman
sitting. The crone asked him to turn back and carry her over the river,
which was much swollen by the rains. This, though he was in anxious
haste, he paused and did, and then, dashing a third time through the
torrent, sped off on his errand to Ayr. An hour later, on returning to
his cottage with the desired attendant, he found to his surprise the
gipsy crone seated by his own fireside. She remained in the house till
the child was born, and then, it is said, taking the infant in her arms,
uttered the prophecy which Burns has turned in his well-known lines:

                'He'll ha'e misfortunes great and sma',
                But aye a heart abune them a',
                He'll be a credit till us a';
                We'll a' be proud o' Robin.'

"Shortly afterwards, as if to begin the fulfillment of the carline's
prophecy, the storm, rising higher and higher, at length blew down a
gable of the dwelling. No one was hurt, however, and the broken gable of
a clay 'bigging' was not a thing beyond repair.

"Such were the circumstances and such was the scene of the birth of the
great peasant-poet. Much change, no doubt, has taken place in the
appearance both of the cottage and of the countryside since the
twenty-fifth of January in the year 1759; but after all it is the same
countryside, and the cottage is on the identical spot. Within these
walls one pictures the poet in his childish years:

                 "There, lonely by the ingle-cheek
                 He sat, and eyed the spueing reek
                 That filled wi' hoast-provoking smeek
                     The auld clay biggin',
                 And heard the restless rattons squeak
                   Aboot the riggin'."

And in this rude apartment the immortal scene of "The Cotter's Saturday
Night" was enacted--and here it occurred to us to ask Mr. Dobson to give
us his conception of the family group at worship--how well he has
succeeded the accompanying picture shows. We will be pardoned, I am
sure, the repetition of the oft-quoted lines in connection with the
artist's graphic representation of a scene already familiar the world

          "The cheerfu' supper done, wi' serious face,
              They, round the ingle, form a circle wide;
          The sire turns o'er, with patriarchal grace,
              The big ha' Bible, ance his father's pride;
              His bonnet rev'rently is laid aside,

          His lyart haffets wearing thin and bare;
              Those strains that once did sweet in Zion glide,
          He wales a portion with judicious care,
          And, 'Let us worship God!' he says, with
              solemn air."

In this same ingle nook it may be that Burns spent an occasional evening
with Highland Mary--for Mary Campbell was for a short time employed as
governess in the vicinity, and it is not unlikely that she was a
frequent guest at the Burns cottage--a probability that has supplied Mr.
Dobson with another of his happiest themes. Associations such as these
are more than the scant array of facts given in the guide-books
concerning the old cottage, and they give to the bare walls and rude
furnishings an atmosphere of romance that no familiarity can dispel.

From Alloway our road quickly takes us to the seashore, which we are to
follow for many miles. It is a glorious day, fresh and invigorating, the
sky tranquil and clear, and the sea mottled with dun and purple mists
which are rapidly breaking away and revealing a wide expanse of gently
undulating water, beyond which, in the far distance, the stern outlines
of Arran and Kintyre gradually emerge.

  From original painting by H. J. Dobson, R. S. W.]

It is a delightful run along the coast, which is rich in associations
and storied ruins. Athwart our first glimpse of the ocean stands the
dilapidated bulk of Dunure Castle, an ancient stronghold of the
Kennedys, who have stood at the head of the Ayrshire aristocracy since
1466. Indeed, an old-time rhymester declared:

               "'Twixt Wigton and the town of Ayr,
                   Port-Patrick and the Cruives of Cree,
               No man may think for to bide there,
                   Unless he court Saint Kennedie."

But to-day the traditions of the blue-blooded aristocrats of Ayrshire
are superseded by the fame of the peasant-poet and the simple cottage at
Alloway outranks all the castles of the Kennedys. We are again reminded
of Burns at Kirkoswald, a tiny village a few miles farther on the road;
here he spent his seventeenth summer and in the churchyard are the
graves of the originals of Tam o' Shanter and Souter Johnnie. We pass in
sight of Culzean Castle, a turreted and battlemented pile, standing on
the verge of a mighty basaltic cliff beneath which the sea chafes
incessantly. It is the seat of the Marquis of Ailsa--one of the
Kennedys--built about a century ago, and the curious may visit it on

What Culzean lacks in antiquity is fully supplied by ruinous Turnberry,
a scant five miles southward, associated as it is with the name of King
Robert Bruce, who may possibly have been born within its walls. Here it
was that Bruce, in response to what he thought a prearranged signal
fire, made his crossing with a few followers from Arran to attempt the
deliverance of his country. The tradition is that the fire was of
supernatural origin and that it may still be seen from the shores of
Arran on the anniversary of the eventful night. This incident is
introduced by Scott into "The Lord of the Isles:"

           "Now ask you whence that wondrous light,
           Whose fairy glow beguiled their sight?--
           It ne'er was known--yet gray-hair'd eld
           A superstitious credence held,
           That never did a mortal hand
           Wake its broad glare on Carrick strand;
           Nay, and that on the self-same night
           When Bruce cross'd o'er, still gleamed the light.
           Yearly it gleams o'er mount and moor,
           And glittering wave and crimson'd shore--
           But whether beam celestial, lent
           By Heaven to aid the King's descent,
           Or fire hell-kindled from beneath,
           To lure him to defeat and death,
           Or were but some meteor strange,
           Of such as oft through midnight range,
           Startling the traveller late and lone,
           I know not--and it ne'er was known."

Turnberry is very ruinous now and must have been rude and comfortless at
its best--another reminder that the peasants of to-day are better housed
and have more comforts and conveniences than kings and nobles enjoyed in
the romantic times we are wont to dream about.

Girvan is the first town of any size which we encounter on leaving Ayr,
a quiet trading-place close on the shore. Just opposite is Ailsa Craig,
a peculiar rocky island twelve miles away, though it looks much nearer.
It seems very like Bass Rock, near Tantallon Castle on the east coast,
though really it is higher and vaster, for it rises more than a thousand
feet above the sea. It is the home of innumerable sea-birds which wheel
in whimpering, screaming myriads about it. A solitary ruin indicates
that it was once a human abode, though no authentic record remains
concerning it.

Southward from Girvan we traverse one of the most picturesque roads in
all Scotland. It winds along the sea, which chafes upon huge boulders
that at some remote period have tumbled from the stupendous overhanging
cliffs. Among the scattered rocks are patches of shell-strewn sand on
which the surf falls in silvery cascades as the tide comes rolling
landward. Even on this almost windless day the scene is an impressive
one and we can only imagine the stern grandeur of a storm hurling the
waves against the mighty rocks which dot the coast-line everywhere. Soon
the road begins to ascend and rises in sweeping curves to Bennane Head,
a bold promontory commanding a wide prospect of the wild shore and sea,
with the coast of Ireland some forty miles away--half hidden in the
purple haze of distance. It is an inspiring view and one which we
contemplate at our leisure--thanks to the motor car, which takes us to
such points of vantage and patiently awaits our pleasure--different
indeed from the transitory flash from the window of a railway car! A
long downward glide takes us into the village of Ballantrae, whose
rock-bound harbor is full of fishing-boats. Here the road turns inland
some miles and passes through a rich agricultural section. In places
apparently the whole population--men, women and children--are employed
in digging potatoes, of which there is an enormous yield. Hay harvest is
also in progress, often by primitive methods, though in the larger
fields modern machinery is used.

  From original painting by the late John MacWhirter, R. A.]

The road brings us again to the coast and a half dozen miles along the
shore of Loch Ryan lands us in the streets of Stranraer. It is a
modern-looking town and we stop at the King's Arms for luncheon, which
proves very satisfactory. There is a daily service of well-appointed
steamers from Stranraer to Larne, a distance of some thirty miles, and
much the shortest route to Ireland. The peninsula on which Stranraer and
Port Patrick are situated is reputed to have the mildest and most
salubrious climate in Scotland and the latter place is gaining fame as a
resort. There are many great country estates in the vicinity, notably
Lochinch, the estate of the Earl of Stair. Near this is Castle Kennedy,
which was burned in 1715, but the ruin is still of vast extent, with
famous pleasure grounds surrounding it. The motorist may well employ a
day in this locality and will be comfortable enough at Stranraer.

There is no nobler highway in Scotland than the broad, level and finely
engineered road from Stranraer through Castle Douglas to Dumfries. It
passes through as beautiful and prosperous a country as we have seen
anywhere--and we have seen much of Scotland, too. At Glenluce we make a
short detour--though it proves hardly worth while--to see the mere
fragment of the old abbey which the neighboring vicar is using as a
chicken-roost. It is utterly neglected and we are free to climb over the
mouldering walls, but there is no one to pilot us about and tell us the
story of the abbey in its prosperous days. And it did have prosperous
days, for it was once of great extent and its gardens and orchards were
reputed one of the sights of Scotland. Here James IV. and his queen came
on one of their journeys some four centuries ago and the record of his
donation of four shillings to the gardener still stands--a pretty slim
royal tip, it seems to us now.

Newton-Stewart is beautifully situated on the River Cree, whose banks we
follow to Wigtown Bay, along which the broad white road sweeps in
graceful curves. Many country houses crown the green, undulating hills
and we catch occasional glimpses of them through the trees--for the
parks are all well wooded. The excellent road through Gatehouse and
Castle Douglas we cover so rapidly that the sun is still high when we
reach Maxwelton. Dumfries, just across the River Nith, is our objective
and it occurs to us that there is still time to correct a mistake we
made on a previous tour--our failure to see Sweetheart Abbey. It is near
the village of New Abbey some ten miles down the river, but on arriving
we learn that the abbey is not shown after six o'clock. A visit to the
custodian's home, however, secures the key and we have sole possession
of the ruin during the quiet twilight hour.

 [Illustration: GLENLUCE ABBEY]

There are many abbey ruins in Scotland--and we have seen the most
famous--but it may be the hour of our visit, quite as much as the
strange story of Sweetheart, that leaves it with the rosiest memory of
them all. In its one-time importance as well as in the beauty of its
scattered remnants, it is quite the peer of any of its rivals, but none
of these have such an atmosphere of romantic history. For Sweetheart
stands forever as a monument of love and constancy, as intimated in its
very name. John Baliol of Barnard Castle, Yorkshire, died in 1269,
leaving his widow, Countess Devorgilla, to mourn his loss. And truly she
did mourn it. There are many monuments to her sorrow--Baliol College,
Oxford, Dundrennan Abbey and New Abbey--or Sweetheart, as it is now
known. Both of the latter are in Galloway, for Devorgilla was the
daughter of the Lord of Galloway and a native of the province. Upon the
death of her only sister she became sole heiress to the vast estates of
her father and when she became Baliol's widow she was easily the richest
subject in all Britain. She survived her husband for twenty-one years,
during which time she was engaged principally in benevolent work,
visiting many parts of the country. Her husband's heart, embalmed and
encased in a silver casket, she constantly carried with her and at her
death in 1289 it was entombed upon her breast. She was buried in New
Abbey, which she built as a memorial to Baliol and a resting place for
her own body. When the abbey was dismantled her tomb was despoiled--but
her epitaph still exists in one of the old chronicles:

           "In Devorgil a sybil sage doth dye as
           Mary contemplative, as Martha pious.
           To her, O deign, high King, rest to impart
           Whom this stone covers, with her husband's heart."

Such is the story of the beautiful old abbey, whose roofless and
windowless walls rise before us, the harsh outlines hidden by the
drooping ivy and softened by the fading light. It is more ruinous and
fragmentary than Melrose or Jedburgh, but enough remains to show its
pristine artistic beauty and vast extent. The sculptures and other
delicate architectural touches were doubtless due to workmen sent by the
Vatican, since the Scotch had hardly attained such a degree of skill in
1270. It is wrought in red sandstone, which lent itself peculiarly well
to the art of the carver and which, considering its fragile nature, has
wonderfully withstood the ravages of time and weather. An extensive
restoration is in progress which will arrest further decay and insure
that the fine old ruin will continue to delight the visitor for years to

 [Illustration: SWEETHEART ABBEY]

There is no one to point out refectory and chapel and other haunts of
the ancient monks--but it is just as well. We know Sweetheart's story
and that is enough, in the silence and solemnity of the gathering
twilight, to make the hour we linger an enchanting one. And yet the
feeling of sadness predominates, as we move softly about over the thick
carpet of green sward--sadness that this splendid memorial to a life of
sacrifice and good works should have fallen into such decay that the
very grave of the benevolent foundress should be effaced! The spell is
broken when one of our party reminds us that it is growing late; that we
may miss the dinner hour at our hotel, and we regretfully bid farewell
to Sweetheart Abbey. We are glad that the royal burgh of Dumfries is at
the end of the day's journey--an unusually long one for us--for we know
that its Station Inn is one of the most comfortable in Scotland.


                        ODD CORNERS OF LAKELAND

Who could ever weary of English Lakeland? Who, though he had made a
score of pilgrimages thither, could not find new beauties in this
enchanted region? And so in our southward run we make a detour from
Carlisle to Keswick by the way of Wigton, a new road to us, through a
green and pleasant country. We soon find ourselves among the hills and
vales of the ill-defined region which common consent designates as the
Lake District. Rounding the slopes of Skiddaw--for we have a rather
indirect route--we come upon a vantage point which affords a glorious
view of Bassenthwaite Water, glittering like a great gem in its setting
of forest trees. We have seen the District many times, but never under
better conditions than on this clear, shimmering July day. The green
wooded vales lying between the bold, barren hills, with here a
church-tower or country mansion and there a glint of tarn or river, all
combine to make an entrancing scene which stretches clear and distinct
to the silvery horizon. We pause a short space to admire it, then glide
gently down the slope and along the meandering Derwent into Keswick

It is the height of the summer season here and the place shows
unmistakable marks of the tourist-thronged resort; the Hotel Keswick,
where we stop for luncheon, is filled to overflowing. It is the most
beautifully located of the many hotels in the town, standing in its own
well-cared-for grounds, which are bedecked with flower-beds and
shrubbery. The Keswick is evidently a favorite with motorists, for we
found many cars besides our own drawn up in front. It is a pleasant,
well-conducted inn--everything strictly first-class from the English
point of view--with all of which the wayfarer is required to pay prices
to correspond.

Keswick is anything but the retired village of the time of the poet
Southey, whose home, Greta Hall, may be seen on an eminence overlooking
the town. As the gateway by which a large proportion of tourists enter
the Lake District, and as a resort where a considerable number of
visitors--mostly English--come to spend their vacations, it is a lively
place for some weeks in midsummer. There is not much of consequence in
the town itself or in the immediate vicinity. It is the starting-point,
however, for an endless number of excursions, mostly by coach, for the
railroad does not enter many parts of the District frequented by
tourists. Even wagon-roads are not numerous and the enthusiast who
wishes to thoroughly explore the nooks and corners must do much
journeying on foot.

We have little reason for choosing the coast road in our southern
journey through Cumberland, except the very good one that we have never
traversed it, while we are familiar with the splendid highway which
follows the lakes to Lakeside and over which runs the great course of
tourist travel. The roads are not comparable in interest, so greatly
does the lake route excel, both in scenic beauty and in literary and
historic associations. Still, the dozen miles from Keswick to
Cockermouth is a beautiful run, passing around the head of Derwentwater
and following for its entire length--some four miles--the western shore
of Bassenthwaite Water. The road winds through almost unbroken woodland
and we catch only fugitive glimpses of the shimmering water between the
thickly crowded trunks that flit between us and the lake. At intervals,
however, we swing toward the shore and come into full view of the
gleaming surface, beyond which stretches an array of wooded parks,
surrounding an occasional country seat. Still beyond rise the stern
outlines of Skiddaw, one of the ruggedest and loftiest of the lake
country hills--though as a matter of fact, its crest is but three
thousand feet above the sea. It is a delightfully quiet road; we meet no
other wayfarers and aside from the subdued purr of the motor, there is
no sound save the wash of the wavelets over the rocks or the rustle of
the summer breeze through the trees. The north end of Bassenthwaite
marks the limit of Lakeland for all except the casual tourist, and here
a snug little wayside inn, the Pheasant, affords a retreat for
solitude-loving disciples of Ike Walton.

Cockermouth has little claim to distinction other than the fact that the
poet Wordsworth was born here a little more than a century and a half
ago. A native of whom we inquire points out the large square gray-stone
house, now the residence of a local physician. The swift Derwent flows a
few rods to the rear and the flower-garden runs down to the river's
edge. The house stands near the highway and is no exception to the
harsh, angular lines that characterize the village. It is in no sense a
public show-place and we have no intention of disturbing the
Sunday-afternoon quiet of the present occupants in an endeavor to see
the interior. Wordsworth's connection with the house ceased at the death
of his father, when the poet was but a child of fourteen. His young
mother--a victim of consumption--had laid down life's burdens some six
years earlier, and the orphan children were taken to the home of a
relative at Kendal.

Perhaps we are the more satisfied to pass the old house with a cursory
glance because, if I must confess it, I was never able to arouse in
myself any great enthusiasm over the poet Wordsworth or to read his
writings except in a desultory way. He never had for me the human
interest of Byron, Burns, Tennyson or many other great lights of English
literature I might name. We were quite willing to assume the role of
intruder at Somersby; we made more than one unsuccessful effort before
we saw Newstead, and three pilgrimages to Alloway have not quenched our
desire to see it again--but we are conscious of little anxiety to enter
the doors of the big square house at Cockermouth. Perhaps we are not
alone in such feeling, for pilgrims to the town are few and a well-known
English author who has written a delightful volume on the Lake District
admits that he paid his first visit to Cockermouth "without once
remembering that it was Wordsworth's birthplace!" His objective was the
castle, a fine mediaeval pile which overlooks the vale of the Derwent.
It is in fair preservation, having been inhabited until quite recently.
Like so many Northland fortresses, it has its legend of Mary Stuart, who
came here after landing at Workington, a seaport a few miles distant.
She had been led by the emissaries of Elizabeth to believe that an
appeal to her "sister's" mercy would assure her a safe refuge in
England, but she never drew a free breath in all the years she was to
live after this act of sadly misplaced confidence.


"No one," says the writer just referred to, "would wish to go beyond
Cockermouth," and though we prove one exception to this rule, it is a
fairly safe one for the average tourist, since rougher, steeper and less
interesting roads are scarce in England. A fairly good highway runs to
Whitehaven, a manufacturing port on the Irish Sea where, according to an
English historian, "John Paul Jones, the notorious buccaneer, served his
apprenticeship, and he successfully raided the place in 1778, burning
three vessels." Not many Americans have visited Whitehaven since, for it
is in no sense a tourist town. We pursue its main street southward until
it degenerates into a tortuous, hilly lane leading through the bleak
Cumberland hills. It roughly follows the coast, though there are only
occasional glimpses of the sea which to-day, half shrouded in a silvery
haze, shimmers in the subdued sunlight. The road, with its sharp turns
and steep grades, is as trying as any we have traversed in England; at
times it runs between tall hedges on earthen ridges--an almost
tunnellike effect, reminding us of Devon and Cornwall, to which the
rough country is not dissimilar. Fortunately, we meet no vehicles--we
see only one motor after leaving Whitehaven--but in the vicinity of the
villages we keep a close look-out for the Sunday pedestrians who throng
the road. Our siren keeps up a pretty steady scream and the natives
stare in a manner indicating that a motor is an infrequent spectacle. We
pass through several lone, cheerless-looking towns, devoid of any touch
of color and wholly lacking the artistic coziness of the Midland
villages. Egremont, Bootle, Ravenglass and Broughton are of this type
and seemingly as ancient as the hills they nestle among.

The ruin of a Norman castle towers above Egremont; shattered, bare and
grim, it stands boldly against the evening sky. Yet it is not without
its romance, a theme which inspired Wordsworth's "Horn of Egremont
Castle." For tradition has it that in days of old there hung above the
gate a bugle which would respond to the lips of none but the rightful
lord. While the owner and his younger brother were on a crusade in the
Holy Land, the latter plotted the death of the Lord of the Castle,
bribing a band of villains to drown him in the Jordan. The rascals claim
to have done their work and Eustace, with some misgivings, hastens home
and assumes the vacant title, though he discreetly avoids any attempt to
wind the famous horn. Some time afterwards, while engaged in riotously
celebrating his accession, a blast of the dreaded horn tells him that
his brother Hubert is not dead, and has come to claim his own. The
usurper flees by the "postern gate," but years afterward he returns to
be forgiven by Sir Hubert and to expiate his crime by entering a
monastery. Wordsworth tells the story in a halting, mediocre way that
shows how little his genius was adapted to such a theme. What a pity
that the story of Egremont was not told by the Wizard with the dash of
"Lochinvar" or the "Wild Huntsman."


There is a fine abbey ruin in the vale of the Calder about a mile from
the main road. Calder Abbey was founded in the twelfth century and was
second only to Furness in importance in Northwestern England. The
beautiful pointed arches supporting the central tower are almost intact
and the cloisters and walls of the south transept still stand. Over them
all the ivy runs riot, and above them sway the branches of the giant
beeches that crowd about the ruin. It is a delightfully secluded nook
and in the quiet of a summer evening one could hardly imagine a spot
more in harmony with the spirit of monastic peace and retirement. Such
is the atmosphere of romance that one does not care to ask the cold
facts of the career of Calder Abbey, and, indeed, there is none to
answer even if we should ask its story.

You would never imagine that Ravenglass, with its single street bordered
by unpretentious slate-roofed, whitewashed houses and its harbor, little
more than a shifting sand-bar, has a history running back to the Roman
occupation, and that it once ranked in importance with Chester and
Carlisle. Archaeologists tell us that in Roman times acres of buildings
clustered on the then ample harbor, where a good-sized fleet of galleys
constantly rode at anchor. Here came the ships of the civilized world to
the greatest port of the North Country, bringing olives, anchovies,
wines and other luxuries that the Romans had introduced into Britain,
and in returning they carried away numbers of the hapless natives to be
sold as slaves or impressed into the armies. The harbor has evidently
filled with silt to a great extent since that day, scarcely any spot
being covered by water at low tide except the channel of the Esk. Many
relics have been discovered at Ravenglass, and the older houses of the
town are built largely from the ruins of the Roman city. Most remarkable
of all are the remains of a villa in an excellent state of preservation,
which a good authority pronounces practically the only Roman building in
the Kingdom standing above ground save the fragments that have been
revealed by excavation.

Ravenglass has another unique distinction in the great breeding ground
of gulls and terns which almost adjoins the place. Here in early summer
myriads of these birds repair to hatch their young, and the spectacle is
said to be well worth seeing--and, in fact, does attract many visitors.
The breeding season, however, was past at the time of our visit. An
English writer, Canon Rawnsley of Carlisle, gives a graphic account of a
trip to the queer colony of sea-birds during their nesting time:

"Suddenly the silence of the waste was broken by a marvellous sound, and
a huge cloud of palpitating wings, that changed from black to white and
hovered and trembled against the gray sea or the blue inland hills,
swept by overhead. The black-headed gulls had heard of our approach and
mightily disapproved of our tresspass upon their sand-blown solitude.

"We sat down and the clamour died; the gulls had settled. Creeping
warily to the crest of a great billow of sand, we peeped beyond. Below
us lay a natural amphitheatre of grey-green grass that looked as if it
were starred with white flowers innumerable. We showed our heads and the
flowers all took wing, and the air was filled again with sound and
intricate maze of innumerable wings.

"We approached, and walking with care found the ground cup-marked with
little baskets or basket-bottoms roughly woven of tussock grass or
sea-bent. Each casket contained from two to three magnificent jewels.
These were the eggs we had come so far to see. There they lay--deep
brown blotched with purple, light bronze marked with brown, pale green
dashed with umber, white shading into blue. All colours and all sizes;
some as small as a pigeon's, others as large as a bantam's. Three seemed
to be the general complement. In one nest I found four. The nests were
so close to one another that I counted twenty-six within a radius of ten
yards; and what struck one most was the way in which, instead of seeking
shelter, the birds had evidently planned to nest on every bit of rising
ground from which swift outlook over the gull-nursery could be obtained.

"Who shall describe the uproar and anger with which one was greeted as
one stood in the midst of the nests? The black-headed gull swept at one
with open beak, and one found oneself involuntarily shading one's face
and protecting one's eyes as the savage little sooty-brown heads swooped
round one's head. But we were not the only foes they had had to battle
with. The carrion crow had evidently been an intruder and a thief; and
many an egg which was beginning to be hard set on, had been prey to the
black robber's beak. One was being robbed as I stood there in the midst
of the hubbub.

"Back to the boat we went with a feeling that we owed large apologies to
the whole sea-gull race for giving this colony such alarm, and causing
such apparent disquietude of heart, and large thanks to the Lord of
Muncaster for his ceaseless care of the wild sea-people whom each year
he entertains upon his golden dunes."

It is growing late as we leave Ravenglass and we wonder where we shall
pass the night. There is no road across the rough country to our right
and clearly we must follow the coast for many miles until we round the
southern point of the hills. Then the wide sand marshes of the Duddon
will force us to turn northward several miles until we come to a
crossing which will enable us to continue our southward course. Here
again a memory of Wordsworth is awakened, for did he not celebrate this
valley in his series of "Sonnets to the Duddon?" There is no
stopping-place at Bootle or Millom or Broughton, unless it be
road-houses of doubtful character and we hasten over the rough narrow
roads as swiftly as steep grades and numerous pedestrians will permit.
The road for some miles on either side of Broughton is little more than
a stony lane which pitches up and down some frightful hills. It is truly
strenuous motoring and our run has already been longer than is our wont.
The thought of a comfortable inn appeals strongly indeed--we study the
map a moment to find to our certain knowledge that nothing of such
description is nearer than Furness Abbey, still a good many miles to the
south. But the recollection of the splendid ruin is, for the time being,
quite overshadowed by our memory of the excellent hotel, which I must
confess exerts much the greater attraction. The country beyond Broughton
has little of interest, but the road gradually improves until it becomes
a broad, well-surfaced highway which enables us to make up for lost
time. Shortly after sunset we enter the well-kept park surrounding the
abbey and hotel. We have come many miles "out of our way," to be sure,
for we are already decided on a northward turn for a last glimpse of
Lakeland tomorrow--but, after all, we are not seeking shortest routes.
Indeed, from our point of view, we can scarcely go "out of the way" in
rural Britain; some of our rarest discoveries have been made
unexpectedly when deviating from main-traveled routes.


On the following day we pursue familiar roads. Passing through Dalton
and Ulverston, we ascend the vale of the Leven to Newby Bridge at the
southern extremity of Windermere. We cannot resist the temptation to
take the Lakeside road to Windermere town, though it carries us several
miles farther north. It is surely one of the loveliest of English roads,
and we now traverse it the third time--once in the sunlight of a perfect
afternoon, once it was gray and showery, and to-day the shadows of the
great hills darken the mirrorlike surface, for it is yet early morning.
The water is of almost inky blackness, but on the far side it sparkles
in the sunlight and the snowy sails of several small craft lend a
pleasing relief to its somber hues. The road winds among the trees that
skirt the shore and in places we glide beneath the overarching boughs.
At times the lake glimmers through the closely standing trunks, and
again we come into the open where our vision has full sweep over the
gleaming expanse of dark water. We follow the Lakeside road for six
miles until we reach the outskirts of the village of Bowness; here a
turn to the right leads up a sharp hill and we are soon on the moorland
road to Kendal. It shows on our map as a "second-class" road and,
indeed, this description was deserved two years before. It is a pleasant
surprise to find it smoothly re-surfaced--an excellent highway now,
though in its windings across the fells it carries us over some steep
grades. On either hand lies a barren and hilly country, which does not
improve until we enter the green valley in which the town is situated.
It is a charming place, depending now for its prosperity on the stretch
of fertile country which surrounds it. Once it had numerous factories,
but changing conditions have eradicated most of them excepting the
woolen mills, which still operate on a considerable scale. The ancient
castle--now a scanty ruin--looms high over the town: "a stern castle,
mouldering on the brow of a green hill," as Wordsworth, who lived many
years in the vicinity, describes it. It might furnish material for many
a romance; here was born Catherine Parr, the queen who was fortunate
enough to survive that royal Bluebeard, Henry VIII. It escaped the usual
epitaph, "Destroyed by Cromwell," since it had long been in ruin at the
time of the Commonwealth. But Cromwell, or his followers, must have been
in evidence in Kendal, for in the church is the helmet of Major Robert
Philipson--Robin the Devil--who gained fame by riding his horse into
this selfsame church during services in search of a Cromwellian officer
upon whom he sought to do summary vengeance. The exploits of this
bellicose major furnish a groundwork for Scott's "Rokeby." The church is
justly the pride of Kendal, being one of the largest in England and of
quite unique architecture. It has no fewer than five aisles running
parallel with each other and the great breadth of the building, together
with its low square tower, gives it a squat appearance, though this is
redeemed to some extent by its unique design. A good part of the
building is more than seven hundred years old, though considerable
additions were made in the fifteenth century. In the tower is a chime of
bells celebrated throughout the North Country for their melody, which is
greatly enhanced by the echoes from the surrounding hills.


Kendal serves as the southernmost gateway of the Lake District, the
railway passing through the town to Windermere, and there is also a
regular coaching service to the same place. When we resume our journey
over the highway to the south we are well out of the confines of English
Lakeland and I may as well close this chapter on the lesser known
corners of this famous region.


                          WE DISCOVER DENBIGH

Night finds us in Chester, now so familiar as to become almost
commonplace, and we stop at the Grosvenor, for we know it too well to
take chances elsewhere. There has been little of consequence on the
highway we followed from Kendal, which we left in the early forenoon, if
we except the fine old city of Lancaster, where we stopped for lunch.
And even Lancaster is so dominated by modern manufactories that it is
hard to realize that its history runs back to Roman times. It has but
few landmarks left; the castle, with the exception of the keep tower, is
modern and used as a county jail--or gaol, as the English have it. St.
Mary's Church, a magnificent fifteenth-century structure, crowns the
summit of the hill overlooking the city and from which a wide scope of
country on one hand and the Irish Sea and Isle of Man on the other may
be seen on clear days.

Preston, Wigan and Warrington are manufacturing towns stretching along
the road at intervals of fifteen or twenty miles and ranging in
population around one hundred thousand each. Their outskirts merge into
villages and for many miles it was almost as if we traveled through a
continuous city. The houses crowd closely on the street, which was often
thronged with children, making slow and careful driving imperative. The
pavements in the larger towns are excellent and the streets of the
villages free from filth--a marked contrast to what we saw on the
Continent. Shortly after leaving Warrington we crossed the Manchester
Ship Canal, by which ocean-going vessels are able to reach that city.
From thence to Chester our run was through a pretty rural section, over
an excellent road.

Chester is crowded even more than usual. An historical pageant is to
take place during the week and many sightseers are already on the
ground. Only our previous acquaintance enables us to secure rooms at the
Grosvenor, since would-be guests are hourly being turned away. Under
such conditions we do not care to linger and after a saunter along the
"rows" in the morning we are ready for the road. We have not decided on
our route--perhaps we may as well return to London and prepare for the
trip to Land's End which we have in mind. A glance at the map shows
Conway within easy distance. Few places have exerted so great a
fascination for us as the little Welsh town--yes, we will sojourn a day
or two in Conway and we may as well go by a route new to us. We will
take the road through Mold and Denbigh, though it never occurs to us
that either of them deserves more than a passing glance.

The first glimpse of Denbigh arouses our curiosity. A vast ivy-mantled
ruin surmounts a steep hill rising abruptly from the vale of the Clwyd,
while the gray monotone of the slate roofs and stone walls of the old
town covers the slopes. The noble bulk and tall spire of the church
occupies the foreground and, indeed, as Dr. Samuel Johnson wrote in
1774, "Denbigh is not a mean town," if one may judge by its aspect from
a little distance. The first view awakens a lively desire for closer
acquaintance and soon we are ascending the long steep street that leads
to the castle--for the castle is naturally the first objective of the
newcomer in Denbigh. The hill rises five hundred feet above the level of
the plain and the ascent, despite its many windings, is steep enough to
change the merry hum of our motor to a low determined growl ere we pause
before the grim old gateway in the fragment of the keep tower.

We are fortunate in finding an intelligent custodian in charge, who
hastens to inform us that he himself is an American citizen, having been
naturalized during a sojourn in the States. We have reason to be proud
of our fellow-countryman, for we have found few of his brethren who
could rival him in thorough knowledge of their charges or who were able
to tell their stories more entertainingly.

There is little left of Denbigh Castle save the remnant of the keep and
the outlines of the foundation walls, but these are quite enough to
indicate its old-time defensive strength. Of all the scores of British
castles we have seen, scarcely another, it seems to us, could have
equalled the grim strength of Denbigh in its palmy days. The keep
consisted of seven great towers, six of them surrounding a central one,
known as the Hall of Judgment. And, indeed, dreadful judgments must have
emanated from this gloomy apartment--gloomy in its best days, being
almost windowless--for beneath the keep the dungeon is still intact to
tell plainer than words the fate of the captives of Denbigh Castle.
"Man's inhumanity to man" was near its climax in the mind of the
designer who planned this tomblike vault, hewn in the solid rock, shut
in by a single iron-bound trap-door and without communication with the
outer air save a small passageway some two inches square and several
feet in length which opened in the outside wall. Only by standing
closely at the tiny aperture was it possible for the inmates to breathe
freely, and when there were more than one in the dungeon the unfortunate
prisoners took turns at the breathing-hole, as it was styled.

The castle was originally of vast extent, its outer wall, which once
enclosed the village as well, exceeding one and one-half miles in
length; and there was a network of underground passageways and
apartments. The complete ruin of the structure is due to havoc wrought
with gunpowder after the Restoration. Huge fragments of masonry still
lie as they fell; others, crumbled to dust, afford footing for shrubs
and even small trees, while yellow and purple wall-flowers and tangled
masses of ivy run riot everywhere. The great entrance gateway is intact
and, strange to say, a statue of Henry de Lacy, the founder, stands in a
niche above the doors, having survived the vicissitudes which laid low
the mighty walls and stately towers. This gate was flanked by two
immense watchtowers, but only a small part of the western one remains.
The remnants, as an English writer has said, "are vast and awful; seldom
are such walls seen; the huge fragments that remain of the exterior
shell impress the mind vividly with their stupendous strength." Several
underground passages have been discovered and one of these led beneath
the walls into the town, evidently intended as an avenue of escape for
the garrison in last extremity. A number of human skeletons were also
unearthed, but as the castle underwent many sieges, these were possibly
the remains of defenders who died within the walls.


As we wander about the ruins, our guide has something to tell us of
every nook. We hear the sad story of the deep well, now dry, beneath the
Goblin Tower, into which the only son of the founder fell to his death,
a tragedy that transferred the succession of the lordship to another
line; and from the broken battlements there is much to be seen in the
green valley below. Yonder was a British camp of prehistoric days,
indicated by the earthen mounds still remaining; near by a Roman camp of
more recent time, though it was little less than two thousand years ago
that the legions of the seven-hilled city marched on yonder plain.
Through the notch in the distant hills came the Cromwellians to lay
siege to Denbigh Castle, the last fortress in the Kingdom to hold out
for King Charles. There was no end of fierce fighting, sallies and
assaults for several months in the summer of 1646--and a great exchange
of courtesies between General Mytton of the Parliamentary Army and Sir
William Salisbury, commanding the castle, who were oldtime friends.
There were truces for burial of the dead of both armies, often with
military honors on part of the opposing side, but all of this did not
mitigate the bitterness with which the contest was waged. The straits of
the garrison became terrible indeed, and at last the implacable old
governor agreed to deliver the castle to his enemies provided he be
given the honors of war and that the consent of the king be secured. His
messenger was given safe conduct to visit Charles and the monarch
readily absolved his faithful retainer from farther efforts in his
behalf. Tradition has it that when the Parliamentarian troops were drawn
up within the castle to receive the surrender, the commander gently
reminded Colonel Salisbury that the key had not yet been delivered. The
bellicose old Cavalier, standing on the Goblin Tower, flung the key to
his conqueror with the bitter remark, "The world is yours. Make it your

But perhaps I have anticipated a little in relating the last great
incident in the history of Denbigh Castle first of all, but its interest
entitles it to precedence, though the earlier story of the castle is
worth telling briefly.

There are indications that this commanding site was fortified long
before the Normans reared the walls now standing, but if so, there are
few authentic details now to be learned. The present castle was built by
Henry de Lacy during the latter half of the thirteenth century and was
one of the many fortresses erected in Wales during the reign of Edward
I. in his systematic attempt to subdue the native chieftains. Of its
vicissitudes during the endless wars between the English and Welsh for
nearly a century after its foundation, it would not be worth while to
write, nor would a list of the various nobles who succeeded to its
command be of consequence. Its most notable proprietor and the one who
left the greatest impress of his ownership was the famous Robert Dudley,
Earl of Leicester, whom we know best from his connection with
Kenilworth. Dudley bought the castle from his patroness, Queen
Elizabeth--it had long before her reign reverted to the crown--though
there is no record that he ever paid even the first installment of
purchase money, and after his death the Queen re-annexed the property on
the ground that it had never been paid for. But even if he did not pay
for his acquisition, Dudley found many ways to give evidence of his
ownership to the people of Denbigh and the surrounding country. His
lordship was one of oppression and rapine and he did not halt at any
crime to advance his ends and to extort money for his projects. His
influence was such that two of the young Salisburys, sons of one of the
noblest families in the country, were hanged at Shrewsbury for pulling
down one of his lordship's illegal fences! This was only typical of his
high-handed proceedings, which were cut short by his sudden death, said
to have been caused by drinking poison which he had prepared for
another! During his ownership he repaired and added to the castle and
began a church on a vast scale--still standing incomplete in ruin. This
he hoped would supersede the cathedral at St. Asaph and the only
recourse of the good people of that town against Leicester's ambitious
schemes was prayer, which doubtless from their point of view seemed
wonderfully efficacious when death snatched their oppressor away.

There was little of importance in the castle's history during the half
century between Leicester's death and the Civil War. Charles I. came
here after Rowton Moor and then it was that the bold governor gave his
oath not to surrender without the King's command. General Mytton, the
victor of Rowton, closely pursued the defeated Royalists and followed
Charles to Denbigh, but the monarch, on learning of his enemy's
approach, escaped to Scotland, only to be captured a little later. Of
the long siege we have already told.

The fate of Denbigh Castle was peculiar in that it was not "destroyed by
Cromwell," as were most of the ruined fortresses which it was our
fortune to see in England. It was held by the Cromwellian army until the
Restoration, when a special edict was framed by the Royal Parliament
ordering that it be blown up with gunpowder. That the work was well done
is mutely testified by the ruins that surround us to-day. For years the
fallen walls served the natives as a stone quarry, but of late Denbigh
has been seized with the zeal for preservation of things historic now so
prevalent in Britain, and the castle is well looked after; decay has
been arrested and the grounds are now a public park. A velvety lawn
carpets the enclosure and a bowling green occupies the court which once
echoed to the tread of armed men and war horses.

But we note little evidence of all the stirring scenes enacted on this
historic spot. It is an ideal summer day; there is scarce a breath of
air to rustle the masses of ivy that cling to the walls; save for the
birds that sing in the trees and shrubs, quiet reigns; there are no
sightseers but ourselves. From the old keep tower a glorious view greets
our eyes. All around lies the green vale of the Clwyd stretching away to
blue hills; it is dotted here and there with red-roofed cottages whose
walls gleam white as alabaster in the noonday sun. The monotony is
further relieved by groups of stately trees which mark the surrounding
country seats and by an occasional glint of the lazy river. Our guide
points out the near-by village of Tremeirchion, whose name goes back to
Roman times--signifying that there was a cavalry station near the spot.
A gray house surrounded by trees is Brynbella, so named by Dr. Samuel
Johnson, who frequently visited the owner, Mrs. Piozzi, during his
residence near Denbigh. Felicia Hemans lived for some time in a cottage
to be seen a little farther down the vale and there are traces of the
beauties of the Clwyd in her poems. On the outskirts of the town are the
ruins of an abbey founded in the reign of Henry III. and within a mile
is Whitchurch, which has many curious features, among them a
stained-glass window which was buried during the Civil War to save it
from the image-smashers.

Nor should we forget the little white cottage where Dr. Samuel Johnson
lived while compiling his famous dictionary. He was attracted here by
the rural quiet of the spot and for several years pursued his colossal
task. The house stands in the edge of a fine grove and is shut in by a
thickly set hawthorn hedge. A monumental shaft in the neighborhood
commemorates the association of the great lexicographer with the spot.


But Denbigh has a more recent distinction that will appeal to every
schoolboy of the English-speaking world, for here, within a stone's
throw of the castle gate, was born Henry M. Stanley, the great explorer.
It was not by this name, however, that he was known when as a boy of
five he was placed in the workhouse at St. Asaph by his mother's
brothers, for it was little John Henry Rowlands who was so cruelly
treated by the master. Stanley himself tells in his autobiography the
story of this Welsh Dotheboys Hall and also of his escape from the
institution after having given a severe thrashing to his oppressor, who
was no match for the sturdy youth of sixteen. After many vicissitudes he
reached New Orleans as a cabin boy on a merchant ship and was employed
by a Henry Morton Stanley, who later adopted him. Of Stanley's career,
one of the most varied and remarkable of which there is authentic
record, we will not write here; only twice in his life did he visit
Denbigh and the last time his mother refused even to see him, alleging
that he had been nothing but a roving ne'er-do-well. She had married
again--Stanley was but three years old when his father died--and had
apparently lost all maternal love for her son, destined to become so
famous. It seems to have been the bitterest experience of the explorer's
life and he never attempted to see his mother again. Denbigh now deeply
regrets that his humble birthplace was pulled down some years ago, but
the little church where he was baptized--which ranks next in importance
to the birthplace, according to accepted English ideas--still stands,
though it is not now used and is very much dilapidated.

Our guide, when he has quite exhausted his historic lore and when the
"objects of interest" have been pointed out and duly expatiated upon,
tells us a story of a certain noble dame of ancient Denbigh which every
newcomer needs must hear at least once. Lady Catherine of Beraine was of
royal descent, her mother being a cousin of Queen Elizabeth; she was
enormously rich and was reputed of great intellectual attainments and
force of character. But her fame to-day in her native town rests on none
of these things; she is remembered as having had four noble husbands,
all local celebrities, two of whom she acquired under, to say the least,
very unusual circumstances. The first, a Salisbury, died not long after
their marriage and was gathered to his fathers after the most approved
fashion of the times. This required that a friend of the deceased escort
the widow at the funeral and this--shall I say pleasant?--task fell to
Sir Richard Clough, a widower of wealth and renown. Sir Richard's
consolation went to very extraordinary length, for before the body of
his friend was interred, he had proposed to the widow and been accepted!
On the return journey from the tomb, Sir Maurice Wynne approached the
lady with a similar proposal, only to find to his chagrin and
consternation that he was too late. But he did the next best thing and
before he was through had the widow's solemn promise that in case she
should be called upon to mourn Sir Richard he should be his friend's
successor! Sir Richard considerately died at forty and his gracious
widow proved true to her promise. She wedded Maurice Wynne and went to
preside over one of the fairest estates in Wales. But this did not end
her matrimonial experiences, for Wynne ere long followed his two
predecessors to the churchyard and the third-time widow made a fourth
venture with Edward Thelwall, a wealthy gentleman of the town. Now while
there may be some mythical details in this queer story, its main
incidents were actually true, and so numerous are the descendants of the
fair Catherine that she is sometimes given the sobriquet of Mam Cymru,
the Mother of Wales. An English writer says of her, "Never, surely, was
there such a record made by a woman of quality. Herself of royal descent
and great possessions and by all accounts of singular mental attraction
if not surpassing beauty, she married successively into four of the most
powerful houses of North Wales."

We thank the custodian for the pains he has taken to inform and
entertain us and bid him farewell with the expected gratuity. We slip
down the winding road to the market-place, where we pause for a short
time to look about the town. We are told that it is one of the best in
Northern Wales, both in a business and social way, and it is distinctly
Welsh as contrasted with the English domination of Welshpool, Ludlow and
Shrewsbury. We see a prosperous-looking class of country folk in the
market-place and while English generally prevails, Welsh is spoken by
some of the older people. They are well-clad and give evidence of the
intelligence and sobriety for which the northern Welshman is noted. The
excellent horses on the streets show that the Welsh are as particular
about their nags as are their English brethren. We wish that our plans
had not been already made--we should like to take up quarters at the
Crown or Bull and remain a day or two in Denbigh. But the best we can do
now is to pick up a few souvenirs at an old curiosity shop near the
market and secretly resolve to come back again.


The road out of the town follows the green vale of the Clwyd to St.
Asaph and Rhuddlan, both of which have enough interest to warrant a few
hours' pause. At St. Asaph we content ourselves with a drive around the
cathedral--the smallest in the Kingdom--against which the haughty
Leicester directed his designs three centuries ago. Its most conspicuous
feature is its huge square tower one hundred feet in height. The St.
Asaph who gave his name to the village and cathedral is supposed to have
founded a church here as early as the middle of the sixth century, one
of the earliest in the Kingdom.

Five miles farther down the valley over a fine level road is Rhuddlan
Castle. There are few more picturesque ruins in Britain than this huge
redstone fortress with its massive round gate-towers, almost completely
covered with ivy. Only the outer shell and towers remain; inside is a
level plat of green sward that gives no hint of the martial activity
within these walls six or seven centuries ago. Rhuddlan was one of the
several castles built by Edward I. in his efforts to subdue the Welsh,
and here he held his court for three years while engaged in his
difficult task. The whole town was a military camp and numbers of the
subdued Welsh chieftains and their retainers must have come hither to
make the best terms they could with their conqueror. But the ruin is
quiet enough under the blue heavens that bend over it to-day--the daws
flap lazily above its ancient towers and the smaller songsters chatter
and quarrel in the thick ivy. The castle has stood thus ever since it
was dismantled by the same General Mytton who forced the surrender of

There is much that might engage our time and attention along the twenty
miles of roads that skirt the marshes and the sea between Rhuddlan and
Conway, but we cannot linger to-day. An hour's run brings us into the
little Welsh citadel shortly after noon and we forthwith repair to the
Castle Hotel.



Mr. Moran has given us in his striking picture a somewhat unusual view
of the towers of Conway Castle. A better-known aspect of the fine old
ruin is shown by the photograph which I have reproduced. Both, however,
will serve to emphasize the point which I desire to make--that Conway,
when seen from a proper distance, is one of the most picturesque of
British castles. The first thing the wayfarer sees when he approaches is
this splendid group of crenelated round towers and it is the last object
to fade on his vision when he reluctantly turns his feet away from the
pleasant old village. And I care not how matter-of-fact and prosaic may
be his temperament, he cannot fail to bear away an ineffaceable
recollection of the grim beauty of the stately pile.

The sea road takes us into the town by the way of the great suspension
bridge, whose well-finished modern towers contrast rather unpleasantly
with the rugged antiquity of the castle across the river; but the
suspension bridge is none the less a work of art and beauty compared
with the angular ugliness of the tubular railway structure that
parallels it. We pay our modest toll and crossing over the green tide
that is now setting strongly up the river, we glide beneath the castle
walls into the town.

The Castle Hotel we know by previous experience to be one of those most
delightful of old-fashioned country inns where one may be comfortable
and quite unhampered by excessive formality. Baedeker, it is true, gives
the place of honor to the Oakwood Park, a pretentious resort hotel about
a mile from the town, but this will hardly appeal to pilgrims like
ourselves, who come to Conway to revel in its old-world atmosphere. The
Castle, with its rambling corridors, its odd corners and plain though
substantial furnishings, is far more to our liking. It stands on the
site of Conway's Cistercian Abbey, built by Prince Llewellyn in 1185,
all traces of which have now disappeared. As the principal inn of the
North Wales art center, its walls are appropriately covered with
pictures and sketches--many of them original--and numerous pieces of
artistic bric-a-brac are scattered about its hallways and mantels. We
notice among the pictures two or three characteristic sketches by Mr.
Moran and learn that he was a guest of the inn for several weeks last
summer, during which time he painted the picture of the castle which
adorns the pages of this book. The impression which he left with the
manageress was altogether favorable; she cannot say enough in praise of
the courtesy and kindness of her distinguished guest who gave her the
much-prized sketches with his compliments. And she is quite familiar
with the names and knows something about the work of several well-known
British artists--for have they not been guests at the castle from time
to time during the summer exhibits? Conway, as we shall see, occupies no
small niche in the art world, having an annual exhibition of
considerable importance, besides affording endless themes to delight the
artistic eye.

  From original painting by Thos. Moran, N. A.]

The immediate objective of the first-time visitor to Conway will be the
castle, but this is our third sojourn in the ancient citadel and we
shall give the afternoon to Plas Mawr. For, though we are quite as
familiar with Plas Mawr as with the castle, the fine old mansion has a
new attraction each year in the annual exhibit of the Royal Cambrian
Academy and the walls are covered with several hundred pictures, many of
them by distinguished British painters. The exhibit is generally
acknowledged to be of first rank and usually includes canvases by Royal
Academicians as well as the work of members of other distinguished
British art societies. That it is not better known and patronized is not
due to any lack of genuine merit; rather to the fact that so many
tourists are ignorant of its very existence as well as the attractions
of the town itself. Such, indeed, was our own case; on our first visit
to Conway we contented ourselves with a glimpse of the castle and
hastened on our way quite unaware of Plas Mawr and its exhibit. Stupid,
of course; we might have learned better from Baedeker; but we thought
there was nothing but the castle in Conway and did not trouble to read
the fine print of our "vade mecum." A second visit taught us better; the
castle one should certainly see--but Plas Mawr and its pictures are
worth a journey from the remotest corner of the Kingdom. Indeed, it was
in this exhibit that I first became acquainted with the work of Mr. H.
J. Dobson of Edinburgh, whose pictures I have had the pleasure of
introducing in America. His famous "New Arrival" was perhaps the
most-talked-of picture the year of our visit and is surely worth showing
herewith as typical of the high quality of the Royal Cambrian exhibit.
And, indeed, this severely plain, almost pathetic, little home scene of
the olden time might just as appropriately have been located in the
environs of Conway.

 [Illustration: "THE NEW ARRIVAL"
  From original painting by H. J. Dobson, R. S. W., exhibited in the Royal
  Cambrian Academy, Plas Mawr, Conway]

I have rambled on about Plas Mawr and its pictures to a considerable
extent, but I have so far failed to give much idea as to Plas Mawr
itself aside from its exhibit. Its name, signifying "the great house,"
is appropriate indeed, for in the whole Kingdom there are few better
examples--at least such as are accessible to the ordinary tourist--of
the spacious home of a wealthy country gentleman in the romantic days of
Queen Bess. It was planned for the rather ostentatious hospitality of
the times and must have enjoyed such a reputation, for it is pretty well
established that Queen Elizabeth herself was a guest in the stately
house. The Earl of Leicester, as we have seen, had large holdings in
North Wales, and was wont to come to Snowdonia on hunting expeditions;
Elizabeth and her court accompanied him on one occasion and were
quartered in Plas Mawr. Tradition, which has forgotten the exact date of
the royal visit, has carefully recorded the rooms occupied by the
queen--two of the noblest apartments in the house. The sitting-room has
a huge fireplace with the royal arms of England in plaster above the
mantel. Adjoining this apartment is the bedroom, beautifully decorated
with heraldic devices and lighted with windows of ancient stained glass.

But I must hasten to declare that I have no intention of describing in
detail the various apartments of the great house. Each one has its own
story and nearly all are decorated with richly bossed plaster friezes
and ceilings. The circular stairways, the corridors, the narrow
passageways and the courtyard are all unique and bring to the mind a
host of romantic musings. You are not at all surprised to learn of Plas
Mawr's ghostly habitant--it is, on the contrary, just what you expected.
I shall not repeat this authentic ghost story; you may find it in the
little guide-book of the house if such things appeal to you; and,
besides, it is hardly suitable for my pages. It is enough to record that
Plas Mawr has its ghost and heavy footfalls may be heard in its vacant
rooms by those hardy enough to remain on nights when storms howl about
the old gables. And it is these same old "stepped" gables with the queer
little towers and tall chimneys that lend such a distinguished air to
the exterior of the old house. It would be a dull observer whose eye
would not be caught by it, even in passing casually along the street on
which it stands. Above the door the date 1576 proves beyond question the
year of its completion and shows that it has stood, little changed, for
more than three centuries. It was built by one of the Wynne family,
which was so distinguished and powerful in North Wales during the reign
of Elizabeth. At present it is the private property of Lord Mostyn, but
one cannot help feeling that by rights it should belong to the tight
little town of Conway, which forms such a perfect setting for this gem
of ancient architecture.


But enough of Plas Mawr--though I confess as I write to an intense
longing to see it again. We must hie us back to our inn, for the dinner
hour is not far off and we are quite ready for the Castle's substantial
fare. There is still plenty of time after dinner to saunter about the
town and the twilight hours are the best for such a ramble. When the
subdued light begins to envelop castle and ancient walls, one may best
realize the unique distinction of Conway as a bit of twelfth-century
medievalism set bodily down in our workaday modern world. The telegraph
poles and wires, the railways and great bridges fade from the scene and
we see the ancient town, compassed with its mighty betowered walls and
guarded by the frowning majesty of the castle. It is peculiarly the time
to ascend the wall and to leisurely walk its entire length. We find it
wonderfully solid and well-preserved, though ragged and hung with ivy;
grasses carpet its crest in places, yellow and purple wall-flowers cling
to its rugged sides, and in one place a sapling has found footing,
apparently thriving in its airy habitat. Yet the wall is quite in its
original state; the hand of the restorer has hardly touched it, nor does
it apparently require anything in the way of repair. How very different
is it from the walls of York and Chester, which show clearly enough the
recent origin of at least large portions throughout their entire
courses. It reaches in places a height of perhaps twenty feet and I
should think its thickness at the base nearly as great. In old days it
was surmounted by twenty-one watchtowers, all of which still remain in a
state of greater or less perfection. Its ancient Moorish-looking
gateways still survive, though the massive doors and drawbridges that
once shut out the hostile world disappeared long since. We saunter
leisurely down the wall toward the river and find much of interest
whichever way we turn. The town spreads out beneath us like a map and we
can detect, after some effort, its fanciful likeness to the shape of a
harp--so dutifully mentioned by the guide-books. Just beneath this we
gaze into the back yards of the poorer quarter and see a bevy of dirty
little urchins going through endless antics in hope of extracting a
copper or two from us--they know us well for tourists at once--who else,
indeed, would be on the wall at such a time? A little farther are the
rambling gables of Plas Mawr and on the extreme opposite side of the
town, the stern yet beautiful towers of the castle are sharply
silhouetted against the evening sky. How it all savors of the days of
chivalrous eld; the flash of armor from yonder watchtowers, the deep
voice of the sentry calling the hour, the gleam of rushlight from the
silent windows or the reveille of a Norman bugle, would seem to be all
that is required to transport us back to the days of the royal builder
of the castle. Or if we choose to turn our gaze outside the walls, we
may enjoy one of the finest vistas to be found in the British Isles.
Looking down the broad estuary, through which the emerald-green tide is
now pouring in full flow toward the sea, one has a panorama of wooded
hills on the one hand and the village of Deganwy with the huge bulk of
Great Orme's Head as a background on the other; while between these a
vast stretch of sunset water loses itself in the distance.


But we are at the north limit of the old wall--for it ends abruptly as
it approaches the beach--and we descend to the promenade along the
river. There is a boathouse here and a fairly good beach. If it had not
so many rivals near at hand, Conway might boast itself as a resort town,
but the average summer vacationist cares less for medieval walls and
historic castles than for sunny beaches and all the diversions that the
seaside resort town usually offers. He limits his stay in Conway to an
hour or two and spends his weeks at Llandudno or Colwyn Bay.

There are many odd corners that are worth the visitor's attention and
one is sure to have them brought to his notice as he rambles about the
town. "The smallest house in the Island" is one of them and the little
old woman who occupies this curiosity will not let you pass without an
opportunity to look in and leave a copper or two in recognition of her
trouble. It is a boxlike structure of two floors about four by six feet
each, comfortably furnished--to an extent one would hardly think
possible in such very contracted quarters. There are many very ancient
homes in the town dating from the sixteenth century and perhaps the best
known of them--aside from Plas Mawr--is the little "Black Lion" in
Castle Street. It is now fitted up as a museum, though its exhibit, I
fear, is more an excuse to exact a shilling from the pocket of the
tourist than to serve any great archeological end. The interior,
however, is worth seeing, as it affords some idea of the domestic life
of a well-to-do middle-class merchant of three or four hundred years
ago. Another building in the same street is of even earlier date, for
the legend, "A. D. 1400," appears in quaint characters above its door.
Still another fine Elizabethan home shows the Stanley arms in stained
glass--an eagle with outstretched wings swooping down upon a child--but
this building, as well as many others in Conway, has been "restored"
pretty much out of its original self. I name these particular things
merely to show what a wealth of interest the town possesses for the
observer who has learned that there is something else besides the castle
and who is willing to make a sojourn of two or three days within the
hoary walls.

The church of St. Mary's has little claim to architectural distinction,
but like nearly all the ancient churches of Britain, it has many odd
bits of tradition and incident quite peculiar to itself. There is an
elaborate baptismal font and a beautiful rood screen dating from the
thirteenth century. John Gibson, R. A., the distinguished sculptor, who
was born near Conway, is buried in the church and a marble bust has been
erected to his memory. Another native buried within the sacred walls is
entitled to distinction in quite a different direction, for a tablet
over his grave declares:

"Here lyeth the body of Nich's Hookes of Conway, Gent. who was ye 41
child of his father William Hookes Esq. and the father of 27 children,
who died on the 20 day of Mch. 1637."

Surely, if these ancient Welshmen were alive to-day they would be
lionized by our anti-race-suicide propagandists! In the chancel there
are several elaborate monuments of the Wynne family which exhibit the
usual characteristics of old-time British mortuary sculpture. One of
these tombs is of circular shape, and interesting from its peculiarity,
though none of them shows a high degree of the sculptor's art.

Outside, near the south porch, is a curious sun dial erected in 1761,
which is carefully graduated to single minutes. Near this is a grave
made famous by Wordsworth in his well-known poem, "We are Seven,"--for
the poet, as we have learned in our wanderings, was himself something of
a traveler and these simple verses remind us of his sojourn in Conway.
Their peculiar appeal to almost every tourist is not strange when we
recall that scarcely a school-reader of half a century ago omitted them.

Conway, as might be expected, has many quaint customs and traditions.
One of these, as described by a pleasing writer, may be worth retelling:

"At Conway an old ceremony called the 'Stocsio' obtained till the
present reign, being observed at Eastertide, when on the Sunday crowds
carrying wands of gorse were accustomed to proceed to a small hill
outside the town known as Pen twt. There the most recently married man
was deputed to read out to a bare-headed audience the singular and
immemorial rules that were to prevail in the town on the following day:
All men under sixty were to be in the street by six o'clock in the
morning; those under forty by four, while youths of twenty or less were
forbidden to go to bed at all. Houses were searched, and much rough
horse-play was going about. Defaulters were carried to the stocks, and
there subjected to a time-honoured and grotesque catechism, calculated
to promote much ridicule. Ball-play in the castle, too, was a
distinguishing feature of all these ancient fete days."

Another carefully preserved tradition relates to the tenure of the
castle by the town corporation, which must pay annually a fee of eight
shillings sixpence to the crown, and the presentation by way of tribute
of a "dish of fish" to the Marquis of Hertford--the titular Earl of
Conway--whenever he visits the town. This gave rise to a ludicrous
misunderstanding not very long ago. An old guide-book substituted "Mayor
of Hereford" for "Marquis of Hertford," and a perusal of this led the
former dignitary to formally claim the honor when he was in Conway. The
mayor of the ancient burg explained the error to his guest, but went on
to say that had sparlings, the peculiar fish for which the Conway River
is noted, been in season and obtainable, he would have had great
pleasure in presenting a dish of them to the Mayor of Hereford; as it
was, it was understood that in default of the sparlings the worthy civic
clerk of Conway would treat his illustrious visitor to a bottle of
champagne of an especially old and choice vintage. There is no record
that the dignitary from Hereford made any objection to the substitution
of something "just as good."

In leaving the castle until the last, I am conscious that I am violating
the precedent set by nearly all who have written of Conway and its
attractions, but I have striven--I hope successfully--to show that there
is enough in the old town to make a pilgrimage worth while, even if it
did not have what is perhaps the most picturesque ruin in the Island.
For the superior claims of Conway Castle are best described by the
much-abused word, "picturesque." While it has seen stirring times, it
did not cut the figure of Denbigh, Harlech or Carnarvon in Welsh
history, nor did it equal many others in size and impregnability. But to
my mind it is doubtful if any other so completely fulfills the ideal of
the towered and battlemented castle of the middle ages. From almost any
viewpoint this is apparent, though the view from across the river is
well-nigh spoiled by the obtrusively ugly tubular railroad bridge; nor
does the more graceful suspension bridge add to it, for that matter. In
earlier times the only approach from this direction was by ferry--an
"awkward kind of a boat called yr ysgraff," says a local guide-book. The
boat seems to have been quite as unmanageable as its name, for on
Christmas day, 1806, it capsized, drowning twelve persons. Twenty years
later the suspension bridge was ready for use and the tubular bridge
followed in 1848.


Conway Castle was one of the several fortresses built by the first
Edward to complete the conquest of Wales. It was designed by Henry de
Elreton, a builder of great repute in his time and also the architect of
Carnarvon and Beumaris. The work was conducted under personal command of
the king and its completion in 1291 was celebrated by a great fete at
Christmastime. As one wanders through the roofless, ivy-clad ruin,
carpeted with the green sward that has crept over the debris-covered
floors, and contemplates the empty windows open to all the winds of
heaven, the fallen walls and crumbling towers, the broken arches--only
one of the eight which spanned the great hall remaining--amid all the
pathetic evidence of dissolution and decay, it is hard indeed to
reconstruct the scene of gay life that must have filled the noble pile
in that far-off day. Here the high-spirited and often tyrannical king,
accompanied by the queen, almost as ambitious and domineering as
himself, had gathered the flower of English knighthood and nobility with
their proud dames and brightly liveried retainers to make merry while
the monarch was forging the chains to bind the prostrate principality.
Here, we may imagine, the revelry of an almost barbarous time and people
must have reached its height; and we may thank heaven that the old order
of things is as shattered and obsolete as the ruined walls that surround

As previously intimated, the history of Conway Castle is hardly in
accord with its grandeur and importance. Its royal founder soon after
its completion found himself closely besieged within its walls by the
Welsh and was nearly reduced to an unconditional surrender, when the
subsidence of the river made it possible for reinforcements to relieve
the situation. A century later Richard II. commanded the troops raised
to war in his behalf on the haughty Bolingbroke to assemble at Conway,
but the monarch's feebleness and vacillation brought all plans of
aggressive action to naught; for he basely abandoned his followers and
rushed blindly into his enemy's power. And thus what might have been a
historic milestone in the career of the castle degenerated into an
unimportant incident. Conway escaped easily during the civil war which
sounded the knell of so many feudal castles. The militant Archbishop
Williams, whose memorial we may see in the parish church, espoused the
side of the king and after his efforts had put everything in shape for
defence, he was ordered to turn over the command to Prince Rupert. This
procedure on the part of Charles led the warlike churchman to suddenly
change his opinion of the justice of the royal cause and he at once
joined forces with the Cromwellians. He carried with him a considerable
following and personally assisted General Mytton in his operations
against both Denbigh and Conway Castles. The latter was first to fall
and the good bishop received the thanks of Parliament for his services
and also a full pardon for the part he had taken in support of King
Charles. He was also able to restore to his followers the valuables
which had been hidden in the castle for safe keeping. Conway was another
exception to Cromwell's rule of destruction of such feudal fortresses.
Perhaps the fact that at the time of its surrender the Royalists were
almost everywhere subdued and not likely to be able to reoccupy it, had
something to do with this unusual leniency. In any event, the discredit
for the destruction of the splendid structure rests with King Charles,
who permitted one of his retainers to plunder it of its leaden roof and
timbers. These materials were to be sent to Ireland--just for what
purpose is not clear--but it does not matter, for the ships carrying the
wreckage were all lost in a violent storm.

Since that memorable period the old ruin has witnessed two and a half
centuries of unbroken peace. Its enemies were no longer battering ram
and hostile cannon. The wild storms of winter, the summer rains and the
sea winds have expended their forces upon it, only to give it a weird,
indescribable beauty such as it never could have possessed in its
proudest days. Careful restoration has arrested further decay and
insures its preservation indefinitely. It has never figured in song or
story to the extent its beauty and romance would lead us to expect,
though Owen Rhoscomyl, a native Welshman, has written a stirring novel,
"Battlements and Towers," which deals with the castle in civil war days.
The story has a historic basis and the graves of the lovers, Dafyd and
Morfa, may still be seen in Conway Church.

But no Welshman has yet arisen to do for his native land what Scott did
for Scotland. The field is fully as rich--surely the struggles of this
brave little people were as heroic and full of splendid incident as
anything that transpired in Scotch history. But as a venture for letters
the field still lies fallow and perhaps the unromantic atmosphere of our
present-day progress will always keep it so. In leaving Conway for our
fifth sojourn at Ludlow we find ourselves wondering which of these may
outrank the other as the gem of all the smaller medieval towns we have
visited in Britain. Indeed, we have not answered the query yet, but we
are sure the distinction belongs to one or the other.



It has been said that the traveler who has visited either John O'Groats
or Land's End never feels at ease until he has both of these places to
his "credit." I should be loath to confess that such a feeling had
anything to do with our setting out from London with Land's End as an
ill-defined objective, though appearances may indeed favor such an
inference. Once before we were within ten miles of the spot and did not
feel interested enough to take the few hours for the trip. But now we
have spent a night at John O'Groats--and have no very pleasant
recollection of it, either--and should we ever tell of our exploit the
first question would be, "And did you go to Land's End?" Be that as it
may, we find ourselves carefully picking our way through the crowded
Oxford street which changes its name a half dozen times before we come
out into the Staines Road. We are not in the best of humor, for it was
two o'clock when we left our hotel--we had planned to start at nine in
the morning! But a refractory magneto in the hands of an English repair
man--who had promised it on the day before--was an article we could not
very well leave behind.

Our itinerary--we never really made one, except in imagination--called
for the night at Dorchester. We had previously passed through the
pleasant old capital of the "Hardy Country" and felt a longing for a
closer acquaintance. But Dorchester is one hundred and thirty miles from
London and our usual leisurely jog will never get us there before
nightfall--a fact still more apparent when we find nearly an hour has
been consumed in covering the dozen miles to Staines. We shall have to
open up a little--a resolution that receives a decided chill when a
gentlemanly Automobile Association scout, seeing the emblem on our
engine hood, salutes us with, "Caution, Sir! Police traps all the way to
Basingstoke." We take some chances nevertheless, but slow down when we
come to a hedgerow or other suspicious object which we fancy may afford
concealment for the despised motor "cop." At Basingstoke a second scout
pronounces the way clear to Andover and Salisbury and the fine
undulating road offers every opportunity to make up for lost time--and
police traps. If the speed limit had been twice twenty miles per hour, I
fear we might--but we are not bound to incriminate ourselves!

Salisbury's splendid spire--the loftiest and most graceful in all
Britain--soon arises athwart the sunset sky and we glide through the
tortuous streets of the town as swiftly as seems prudent. The road to
Blandford is equally good and just at dusk we enter the village of
Puddletown, stretching for half a mile along the roadside. Its name is
not prepossessing, but Puddletown has a church that stands to-day as it
stood nearly three hundred years ago, for it has not as yet fallen into
the hands of the restorer. Its paneled and beamed ceiling of Spanish
chestnut, innocent of paint or varnish, its oaken pews which seated the
Roundheads and Royalists of Cromwell's day, its old-fashioned pulpit and
its queer baptismal font, are those of the country church of nearly
three centuries ago. The village is a cozy, beflowered place on a clear
little river, whose name, the Puddle, is the only thing to prejudice one
against it. Just adjoining Puddletown is Aethelhampton Court, the finest
country house in Dorset, which has been inhabited by one family, the
Martins, for four hundred years.

Darkness is setting in when we drive into the courtyard of the King's
Arms in Dorchester. It is a wild, windy evening; rain is threatening and
under such conditions the comfortable old house seems an opportune haven
indeed. It is a characteristic English inn such as Dickens eulogizes in
"Pickwick Papers"--one where "everything looks--as everything always
does in all decent English inns--as if the travelers had been expected
and their comforts prepared for days beforehand." There is a large,
well-furnished sitting-room awaiting us, with bedrooms to match, and the
evening meal is ready on a table resplendent with fresh linen and
glittering silver. In a cabinet in the corner of the dining-room is an
elaborate silver tea-service with the legend, "Used by His August
Majesty King Edward VII. when as Prince of Wales he was a guest of the
King's Arms, Dorchester, on--" but we have quite forgotten the date. A
rather recent and innocent tradition, but perhaps the traveler of two
centuries hence may be duly impressed, for the silver service will be
there if the King's Arms is still standing. It is an irregular old
house, built nobody knows just when, and added to from time to time as
occasion required. The lack of design is delightfully apparent; it is a
medley of scattered apartments and winding hallways. It would fit
perfectly into a Dickens novel--indeed, with the wind howling furiously
outside and the rain fitfully lashing the panes we think of the stormy
night at the Maypole in "Barnaby Rudge." But it has been a rather trying
day and our musings soon fade into pleasant dreams when we are once
ensconced in the capacious beds of the King's Arms.

One can spend a profitable half day in Dorchester and a much longer time
might be consumed in exploring the immediate vicinity. There are two
fine churches, All Saints', with a tall slender spire, and St. Peter's,
with a square, battlemented tower from which peal the chimes of the town
clock. In the latter church is a tomb which may interest the few
Americans who come to Dorchester, since beneath it is buried Rev. John
White, who took an active part in founding Massachusetts Colony. In 1624
he despatched a company of Dorset men to the new colony, raising money
for them, procuring their charter and later sending out as the first
governor, John Endicott of Dorchester, who sailed for New England in
1629 in the "George Bona Ventura." In both churches there is an unusual
number of effigies and monuments which probably escaped because of
Dorchester's friendliness for the Parliamentary cause--but none of them
commemorates famous people. Outside St. Peter's there is a statue to
William Barnes, the Dorset poet, with an inscription from one of his own
poems which illustrates the quaint dialect he employed:

                    "Zoo now I hope his kindly feace
                    Is gone to find a better pleace:
                    But still wi' vo'k a-left behind
                    He'll always be a-kept in mind."

The county museum, adjoining the church, contains one of the best
provincial collections in England. The vicinity is noted for Roman
remains and a number of the most remarkable have found a resting-place
here. There are curiosities galore in the shape of medieval implements
of torture, among them a pair of heavy leaden weights labeled "Mercy,"
which a tender-hearted jailer ordered tied to the feet of a man hanged
for arson as late as 1836, so he would strangle more quickly. There are
relics of Jeffreys' dread court, the chair he used when sentencing the
Dorset peasants to transportation and death and the iron spikes on which
the heads of the rebels were exposed to blacken in the sun. There is
much besides horrors in Dorchester Museum, though I suppose the gruesome
and horrible will always get the greater share of attention. And such
things are not without their educational and moral value, for they speak
eloquently of the progress the human race has made to render such
implements of torture only objects of shuddering curiosity.

To the admirer of Thomas Hardy, the novelist, Dorchester will always
have a peculiar interest, for here the master still lives, much alone,
in a little house near the town, his simple life and habits scarcely
differentiating him from the humblest Wessex peasant. I say "the
novelist," for another Thomas Hardy was also a Dorchester man--the
admiral who supported the dying Nelson at Trafalgar. The great writer,
however, is known to all the townsmen and is universally admired and
revered. Shortly after our visit the people of the town essayed a fete
in his honor, the chief feature being two plays adapted from Wessex
tales. Mr. Hardy, though in his seventy-second year, followed the
rehearsals closely, sitting night after night in a dark corner of the
auditorium. A correspondent described him as "a grave, gray little
figure with waxed moustache ends and bright vigilant eyes, who rose
occasionally to make a suggestion, speaking almost apologetically as if
asking a favor." His suggestions usually had to do with the character
and effect of word cadences. Nothing could exceed his sensitiveness to
the harmonies of speech. "Will you let me see the book, please?" he
would say. "I think that sentence does not sound right; I will alter it
a little."

He also personally arranged the hornpipe dance by shepherds in the
cottage where three wayfarers take shelter from a storm. The music was
played by a fiddler nearly eighty years old who used to make a living by
such rustic merrymakings and who is perhaps the last survivor of the
race of fiddlers in Dorset. All the actors belonged to the town. One is
a cooper, another a saddler, and there were clerks and solicitors and
auctioneers. The producer who designed all the scenery is a monument
mason and ex-mayor of Dorchester.

It is perhaps too early to predict the place of Thomas Hardy in
literature, though there be those who rank him with George Eliot. His
home town, which he has given to fame as the Casterbridge of his tales,
has no misgivings about the matter and freely ranks him with the
immortals. The chilling philosophy of many of his books has not hidden
his warm heart from his townsmen, who resent the word "stony" applied to
him by an American writer. They say that his unpretentious life, his
affability, his consideration for others and his modesty, all teach the
lessons of love and hope, and that nothing is farther from his personal
character than misanthropy or coldness.

The history of Dorchester differs not greatly from that of many other
English towns of its class. A Roman station undoubtedly existed here.
The town was mentioned in the Doomsday Book and was a village of good
size in the reign of Henry VIII. In 1613 it was totally destroyed by
fire--a calamity which the citizens declared a "visitacion of God's
wrath," to appease which they founded an almshouse and hospital. With
business foresight they also established a brewery, the profits from
which were expected to maintain the hospital, and the grave records show
no intimation of any question whether such a plan might be acceptable to
the Deity they sought to placate.

Dorchester was strongly for the Parliament in the unpleasantness between
Oliver and the king, but its loyalty was not very aggressive, for it
surrendered to the royal army with scarcely a show of resistance--the
more to its discredit, since it had been elaborately fortified and was
well supplied with munitions of war. It suffered severely for its
cowardice, for it was taken and retaken many times during the war and
its citizens subjected to numberless exactions and indignities. The
ascendency of the commonwealth brought Dorchester comparative peace for
three or four decades. The next notable event in its career was the
coming of Jeffreys the infamous to judge the unfortunate Dorset men who
inclined, or were alleged to have inclined, towards the Duke of Monmouth
in his ill-starred attempt on the throne of England. To expedite
matters, Jeffreys let it be understood that a plea of guilty would
predispose him to mercy, but the poor wretches who fell into this trap
were sentenced to death or transportation on their own confessions. The
charge lodged against most of the unfortunates was that they were "away
from their habitacions att the tyme of the rebellion."

For more than two centuries after this carnival of death, sanctioned by
a corrupt and vengeful government, Dorchester has pursued the paths of
unbroken peace and has grown and prospered in a quiet way. The fame of
Thomas Hardy attracts many and the roving motor car also brings an
increasing number of pilgrims, none of whom go away disappointed. It is
a trim old town, still picturesque, though modern improvements are
making inroads on its antique quaintness. Its environs are singularly
beautiful; the country roads enter the town between ranks of splendid
trees and the avenues around the town are bordered with giant limes,
sycamores and chestnuts. The River Frome glides quietly past the place
through reedy meadows and the smooth green sward covers the ancient
Roman amphitheatre which adjoins the town on the south. This is by far
the most perfect work of its kind in Britain; it is about two hundred
feet in diameter and must have accommodated some twelve thousand
spectators. It lies just along the road by which we leave the town and
which runs almost due west to Bridport, Lyme Regis and Exeter. For some
miles we pursue a sinuous course across the barren country and
occasionally encounter forbiddingly steep grades. At Bridport we catch
our first glimpse of a placidly blue sea, which frequently flashes
through gaps in the hills for the next twenty miles.

At Lyme Regis the road pitches down a sharp hill into the town, which
covers the slopes of a ravinelike valley. It is a retired little seaside
resort, though red roofs of modern villas now contrast somewhat with its
rural appearance. No railroad comes within several miles of the place,
which has a permanent population of only two thousand. It is not without
historic tradition, for here the Duke of Monmouth landed on his
ill-fated invasion to which we have already referred. The town was a
favorite haunt of Jane Austen and here she located one of the memorable
scenes in "Persuasion." It is still a very quiet place--a retreat for
those seeking real seclusion and freedom from the formality and turmoil
of the larger and more fashionable resorts. Its tiny harbor, encircled
by a crescent-shape sweep of cliffs, is almost innocent of craft to-day,
though there was a time when it ranked high among the western ports. It
is one of those delightful old villages one occasionally finds in
England, standing now nearly as they did three centuries ago, while the
great world has swept away from them.

We wish we might tarry a day in Lyme Regis, but our plans will not
permit it now. We climb the precipitously steep, irregular road that
takes us out of the place, though we cast many backward glances at the
little town and quiet blue-green harbor edged by a scimiterlike strip of
silver sand. The Exeter road is much the same as that between Lyme Regis
and Dorchester--winding, steep, narrow and rough in places--and the
deadly Devonshire hedgerow on a high earthen ridge now shuts out our
view of the landscape much of the time. Devon and Cornwall, with the
most charming scenery in England, would easily become a great motoring
ground if the people would mend the roads and eradicate the hedgerows.

At Exeter we stop at the Rougemont for lunch, despite the recollection
of pretty high charges on a former occasion. It is one of the best
provincial hotels, if it is far from the cheapest. A drizzling rain is
falling when we leave the cathedral city for Newton Abbot and Totnes,
directly to the south; in the market-place of the first-named town is
the stone upon which William III. was proclaimed king after his landing
at Brixham.

Totnes, seven miles farther, has many quaint old houses with odd piazzas
and projecting timbered gables, which give the streets a decidedly
antique appearance. Here, too, is another famous stone, the identical
one upon which Brutus of Troy first set foot when landing in Britain at
a date so remote that it can only be guessed at. Indeed, there be
wiseacres who freely declare that the Roman prince never set foot on it
at all; but we are in no mood for such scepticism to-day, when cruising
about in a steady rain seeking "objects of interest," as the road-book
styles them. Of Totnes Castle only the foundations remain, though it
must have been a concentric, circular structure like that of Launceston.
From its walls on fair days there is a lovely, far-reaching view quite
shut out from us by the gray mist that hovers over the valley--a scene
described by a writer more fortunate than we as "a rich soft country
which stretches far and wide, a land of swelling hills and richly wooded
valleys and green corn springing over the red earth. Northwards on the
skyline, the Dartmoor hills lie blue and seeming infinitely distant in
the light morning haze; while in the opposite direction, one sees a long
straight reach of river, set most sweetly among the hills, up which the
salt tide is pouring from Dartmouth so rapidly that it grows wider every
moment, and the bitter sea air which travels with it from the Channel
reaches as far as the battlements on which we stand. Up that reach the
Totnes merchants, standing on these old walls, used to watch their
argosies sailing with the tide, homeward bound from Italy or Spain,
laden with precious wines and spices."

But no one who visits Totnes--even though the day be rainy and
disagreeable--should fail to see Berry Pomeroy Castle, which common
consent declares the noblest ruin in all Devon and Cornwall. We miss the
main road to the village of Berry and approach the ruin from the rear by
a narrow, muddy lane winding over steep grades through a dense forest.
We are not sure whether we are fortunate or otherwise in coming to the
shattered haunt of the fierce old de Pomeroys on such a day. Perhaps its
grim traditions and its legends of ghostly habitants seem the more
realistic under such a lowering sky--and it may be that the gloomy day
comports best with the scene of desolation and ruined grandeur which
breaks on our vision.

The castle was an unusual combination of medieval fortress and palatial
dwelling house, the great towers still flanking the entrance suggesting
immense defensive strength, as does the situation on the edge of a rocky
precipice. The walls are pierced by multitudes of mullioned windows--so
many, indeed, an old chronicle records, that it was "a day's work
for a servant to open and close the casements." In some details
the more modern remnants of the structure remind one of Cowdray
Palace--especially the great window groups. Verily, "ruin greenly
dwells" at Berry Pomeroy Castle. Ivy mantles every inch of the walls and
some fragments, rising tall and slender like chimneys, are green to the
very tops. The green sward runs riot over the inner courts and covers
fallen masses of debris; great trees, some of them doubtless as old as
the castle itself, sway their branches above it; our pictures tell the
story, perhaps better than any words, of the rank greenness that seems
even more intense in the falling rain.

One quite forgets the stirring history of the castle--and it is
stirring, for does not tradition record that its one-time owners urged
their maddened steeds to spring to death with their riders from the
beetling precipice on which the castle stands, rather than to surrender
to victorious besiegers?--I say one forgets even this in the rather
creepy sensations that come over him when he recalls the ghostly legends
of the place. For Berry Pomeroy Castle has one of the most
blood-curdling and best authenticated ghost stories that it has been my
lot to read. It has a weird interest that warrants retelling here and
the reader who has no liking for such things may skip it if he chooses.


"Somewhat more than a century ago, Dr. Walter Farquhar, who was created
a baronet in 1796, made a temporary sojourn in Torquay. This physician
was quite a young man at that time and had not acquired the reputation
which, after his settlement in London, procured him the confidence and
even friendship of royalty. One day, during his stay in Devon, he was
summoned professionally to Berry Pomeroy Castle, a portion of which
building was still occupied by a steward and his wife. The latter was
seriously ill, and it was to see her that the physician had been called
in. Previous to seeing his patient Dr. Farquhar was shown an outer
apartment and requested to remain there until she was prepared to see
him. This apartment was large and ill-proportioned; around it ran richly
carved panels of oak that age had changed to the hue of ebony. The only
light in the room was admitted through the chequered panes of a
gorgeously stained window, in which were emblazoned the arms of the
former lords of Berry Pomeroy. In one corner, to the right of the wide
fireplace, was a flight of dark oaken steps, forming part of a staircase
leading apparently to some chamber above; and on these stairs the fading
gleams of summer's twilight shone through.

"While Dr. Farquhar wondered, and, if the truth be told, chafed at the
delay which had been interposed between him and his patient, the door
opened, and a richly dressed female entered the apartment. He, supposing
her to be one of the family, advanced to meet her. Unheeding him, she
crossed the room with a hurried step, wringing her hands and exhibiting
by her motions the deepest distress. When she reached the foot of the
stairs, she paused for an instant and then began to ascend them with the
same hasty step and agitated demeanour. As she reached the highest stair
the light fell strongly on her features and displayed a countenance
youthful, indeed, and beautiful, but in which vice and despair strove
for mastery. 'If ever human face,' to use the doctor's own words,
'exhibited agony and remorse; if ever eye, that index of the soul,
portrayed anguish uncheered by hope and suffering without interval; if
ever features betrayed that within the wearer's bosom there dwelt a
hell, those features and that being were then present to me.'

"Before he could make up his mind on the nature of this strange
occurrence, he was summoned to the bedside of his patient. He found the
lady so ill as to require his undivided attention, and had no
opportunity, and in fact no wish, to ask any questions which bore on a
different subject to her illness.

"But on the following morning, when he repeated his visit and found the
sufferer materially better, he communicated what he had witnessed to the
husband and expressed a wish for some explanation. The steward's
countenance fell during the physician's narrative and at its close he
mournfully ejaculated:

"'My poor wife! my poor wife!'

"'Why, how does this relation affect her?'

"'Much, much!' replied the steward, vehemently. 'That it should have
come to this! I cannot--cannot lose her! You know not,' he continued in
a milder tone, 'the strange, sad history; and--and his lordship is
extremely averse to any allusion being ever made to the circumstance or
any importance attached to it; but I must and will out with it! The
figure which you saw is supposed to represent the daughter of a former
baron of Berry Pomeroy, who was guilty of an unspeakable crime in that
chamber above us; and whenever death is about to visit the inmates of
the castle she is seen wending her way to the scene of her crimes with
the frenzied gestures you describe. The day my son was drowned she was
observed; and now my wife!'

"'I assure you she is better. The most alarming symptoms have given way
and all immediate danger is at an end.'

"'I have lived in and near the castle thirty years,' was the steward's
desponding reply, 'and never knew the omen fail.'

"'Arguments on omens are absurd,' said the doctor, rising to take his
leave. 'A few days, however, will, I trust, verify my prognostics and
see Mrs. S---- recovered.'

"They parted, mutually dissatisfied. The lady died at noon.

"Years intervened and brought with them many changes. The doctor rose
rapidly and deservedly into repute; became the favourite physician and
even personal friend of the Prince Regent, was created a baronet, and
ranked among the highest authorities in the medical world.

"When he was at the zenith of his professional career, a lady called on
him to consult him about her sister, whom she described as sinking,
overcome and heartbroken by a supernatural appearance.


"'I am aware of the apparent absurdity of the details which I am about
to give,' she began, 'but the case will be unintelligible to you, Sir
Walter, without them. While residing at Torquay last summer, we drove
over one morning to visit the splendid remains of Berry Pomeroy Castle.
The steward was very ill at the time (he died, in fact, while we were
going over the ruins,) and there was some difficulty in getting the
keys. While my brother and I went in search of them, my sister was left
alone for a few moments in a large room on the ground-floor; and while
there--most absurd fancy!--she has persuaded herself she saw a female
enter and pass her in a state of indescribable distress. This spectre, I
suppose I must call her, horribly alarmed her. Its features and gestures
have made an impression, she says, which no time can efface. I am well
aware of what you will say, that nothing can possibly be more
preposterous. We have tried to rally her out of it, but the more
heartily we laugh at her folly, the more agitated and excited does she
become. In fact, I fear we have aggravated her disorder by the scorn
with which we have treated it. For my own part, I am satisfied her
impressions are erroneous, and rise entirely from a depraved state of
the bodily organs. We wish for your opinion and are most anxious you
should visit her without delay.'

"'Madam, I will make a point of seeing your sister immediately; but it
is no delusion. This I think it proper to state most positively, and
previous to any interview. I, myself, saw the same figure, under
somewhat similar circumstances and about the same hour of the day; and I
should decidedly oppose any raillery or incredulity being expressed on
the subject in your sister's presence.'

"Sir Walter saw the young lady next day and after being for a short time
under his care she recovered.

"Our authority for the above account of how Berry Pomeroy Castle is
haunted derived it from Sir Walter Farquhar, who was a man even more
noted for his probity and veracity than for his professional
attainments, high as they were rated. The story has been told as nearly
as possible in Sir Walter's own words."

Yonder is the "ghost's walk," along that tottering wall; yonder is the
door the apparition is said to enter. If you can stand amidst these
deserted ruins on a dark, lowering evening and feel no qualms of
nervousness after reading the tale, I think you are quite able to laugh
all ghosts to scorn.

We have lingered long enough at Berry Pomeroy--we can scarce cover the
twenty miles to Plymouth ere darkness sets in. But fortune favors us; at
Totnes the rain ceases and a red tinge breaks through the clouds which
obscure the western sky. We have a glorious dash over the wet road which
winds through some of the loveliest of Devonshire landscapes. Midway,
from the hilltop that dominates the vale of the Erme, we get a view of
Ivy Bridge, a pleasant village lying along the clear river, half hidden
in the purple haze of evening; and just at dusk we glide into the city
of the Pilgrim Fathers.



We did not search our road-maps for Polperro because of anything the
guide-books say about it, for these dismiss it as a "picturesque fishing
village on the South Devonshire coast." There are dozens of such
villages in Devon and Cornwall, and only those travelers whose feet are
directed by some happy chance to Polperro will know how much it
outshines all its rivals, if, indeed, there are any worthy to be styled
as such. Our interest in the quaint little hamlet was aroused at a
London art exhibit, where a well-known English artist showed some three
score clever sketches which arrested our attention at once.

"I made them last summer during a stay at Polperro," he said in answer
to our inquiry.

"And where is Polperro, pray?" we asked with visions of Italy or Spain
and were taken aback not a little to learn that a Devonshire village
afforded subject matter for the sketches. And forthwith Polperro was
added to the list of places we must see on our projected Land's End
tour. A diligent search of our maps finally revealed the name and showed
the distance about twenty miles from Plymouth. The road is steep and
winding and there is only a network of narrow lanes for some miles out
of the village.

We leave Plymouth after a night's sojourn at the Grand Hotel and cross
the estuary at the Tor Point ferry, which makes trips at frequent
intervals. A flat-bottomed ferry boat, held in place against the strong
tides by heavy chains anchored at either end, takes us across for a
moderate fare and we set out beneath a lowering sky to explore the rough
and difficult but beautiful bit of country stretching along the coast
from Plymouth to Fowey Harbor. Indeed, we had in mind to cross the
estuary by ferry at the latter place and asked a garage employee about
the facilities for so doing.

"Hi wouldn't recommend it, sir. Last week a gent with a motor tried it
and the boat tipped and let the car into the water. Hi went down to 'elp
them get it out and you could just see the top sticking out at low

And so we altered our route to go around the estuary--some fifteen
miles--rather than chance repeating the exciting experience of our
fellow-motorist of the week before. But this is a digression--I had
meant to say that there is little to engage our attention for several
miles after crossing at Tor Point. The country is studded with rough
hills and our route cuts across some of these, a wide outlook often
rewarding the steep climb to the summits. We cautiously follow the
sinuous road until it pitches sharply down into the ravinelike coomb
occupied by the Looes, East and West, according to their position on the
river. These villages cling to the steep hills, rising from either side
of the river, which we cross by a lichen-covered bridge hung with a
multitude of fishing nets. We see a confused medley of houses elbowing
one another out into the roadway until their sagging gables nearly meet
in places, built apparently with sublime disregard of the points of the
compass and without any preconceived plan. Once it was a famous fishing
port, but now the industry is conducted on a small scale only and the
Looes have to depend largely on vacationists from Plymouth in
summertime. We do not linger here, but after crossing the bridge we
enter the narrow road that cuts straight across the hills to Polperro.
It is a rough, hilly road and the heavy grades shift the gears more than
once; but it carries us to splendid vantage-points where we pause to
glance at the landscape. There are wide expanses of wooded hills with
lovely intersecting valleys, the predominating green dashed with broad
splotches of purple heather--the rankest and most brilliant of any we
saw in a land famous for its heather! Over all stretches the mottled
sky, reflecting its moods on the varied scenes beneath--here a broad
belt of sunlight, yonder a drifting shower, for it is one of those
fitful days that alternately smiles and weeps. We descend another long
hill and enter the lane which runs down the ravine into the main street
of Polperro.


The main street of Polperro! Was there ever another avenue like it?--a
cobble-paved, crooked alley scarce a half dozen feet from curb to curb,
too narrow for vehicles of any kind to pass. The natives come out and
stare in wonderment at our presumption in driving a motor into
Polperro--and we become a little doubtful ourselves when a sharp turn
bars our progress near the post office. A man, seeing us hesitate, tells
us we cannot very well go farther--a suggestion with which we quite
agree--and leaving the car surrounded by a group of wondering children
we set out on foot to explore the mysteries of Polperro.

I think we can truthfully declare that of all the queer villages we saw
in Britain--and it would be a long story to tell of them--no other
matched the simple, unpretentious fisher-town of Polperro. No huge hotel
with glaring paint, no amusement pier or promenade, none of the earmarks
of the conventional resort into which so many fine old towns have--shall
I say degenerated?--are to be seen; nothing but the strangest jumble of
old stone houses, wedged in the narrow ravinelike valley. So irregularly
are they placed, with such a total disregard of straight lines and
directions, that it seems, as one writer has remarked, that they might
originally have been built on the hillsides at decent distances from
each other and by some cataclysm slid down in a solid mass along the
river. The streets are little more than footpaths and wind among a
hundred odd corners, of which the one shown in our sketch is only
typical. We cross the river--at low tide only a shallow stream--by the
narrow high-arched bridge, whose odd design and lichen-covered stones
are in perfect keeping with the surroundings, and come out on the sea
wall that overlooks the tiny harbor. A dozen old salts--dreaming, no
doubt, of their active younger days on the blue sea stretching out
before them--are roused from their reveries and regard us curiously.
Evidently tourists are not an everyday incident in Polperro, and they
treat us with the utmost civility, answering our queries in broad
Cornish accent that we have to follow closely to understand. A few
fishing boats still go out of the town, but its brave old days are past;
modern progress, while it has left Polperro quite untouched, has swept
away its ancient source of prosperity. Once its harbor was a famous
retreat for smugglers, who did a thriving business along the Cornish
coast, and it is possible some of these old fellows may have heard their
fathers tell thrilling tales of the little craft which slipped into the
narrow inlet with contraband cargos; of wrecks and prizes, with spoils
of merchandise and gold, so welcome to the needy fisherfolk, and of
fierce and often deadly conflicts with the king's officers.


The tide is out and a few boats lie helplessly on their sides in the
harbor; no doubt the scene is more animated and pleasing when the green
water comes swelling up the inlet and fills the river channel, now
strewn with considerable unsightly debris. A violent storm driving the
ocean into the narrow cleft where the town lies must be a fearsome
spectacle to the inhabitants, and fortunately it has been well described
by Polperro's historian, who has told a delightful story of the town.

"In the time of storm," he writes, "Polperro is a striking scene of
bustle and excitement. The noise of the wind as it roars up the coomb,
the hoarse rumbling of the angry sea, the shouts of the fishermen
engaged in securing their boats, and the screams of the women and
children carrying the tidings of the latest disaster, are a peculiarly
melancholy assemblage of sounds, especially when heard at midnight. All
who can render assistance are out of their beds, helping the sailors and
fishermen; lifting the boats out of reach of the sea, or taking the
furniture of the ground floors to a place of safety. When the first
streak of morning light comes, bringing no cessation of the storm, but
only serving to show the devastation it has made, the effect is still
more dismal. The wild fury of the waves is a sight of no mean grandeur
as it dashes over the peak and falls on its jagged summit, from whence
it streams down the sides in a thousand waterfalls and foams at its
base. The infuriated sea sweeps over the piers and striking against the
rocks and houses on the warren side rebounds towards the strand, and
washes fragments of houses and boats into the streets, where the
receding tide leaves them strewn in sad confusion."

A brisk rain begins as we saunter along the river, and we recall that
the car has been left with top down and contents exposed to the weather.
We hasten back only to find that some of the fisherfolk have anticipated
us--they have drawn the top forward and covered everything from the rain
as carefully as we could have done--a thoughtfulness for the stranger in
the village that we appreciate all the more for its rarity. And though
we left the car surrounded by a group of merry, curious children, not a
thing is disturbed.


The postmaster is principal shopkeeper and from him we learn something
of the town and secure a number of pictures which we prize, though
pictures are hopelessly inadequate to give any real idea of Polperro. As
yet tourist visitors to the village are not numerous, though artists
frequently come and are no longer a source of wonderment to the natives.
Two plain but comfortable old inns afford fair accommodations for those
who wish to prolong their stay. With the increasing vogue of the motor
car, Polperro's guests are bound to be on the increase, though few of
them will remain longer than an hour or two, since there is little to
detain one save the village itself.

Lansallos Church is a splendid edifice surrounded by tall trees beneath
which are mouldering gravestones upon which one may read queer
inscriptions and epitaphs. There is also an ancient water-mill just
where the road enters the village, which still does daily duty, its huge
overshot wheel turning slowly and clumsily as the clear little moorland
stream dashes upon it. No famous man has come forth from the village,
but it produced a host of hardy seamen, who, under such leaders as Drake
and Nelson, did their full share in maintaining the unbroken naval
supremacy of England. And not a few of those who fought so valiantly for
their country gained their sea training and developed their hardihood
and resourcefulness in the ancient and--in Devon and Cornwall--honorable
occupation of smuggling.

We follow narrow, hedge-bordered lanes northward for several miles to
regain the main road from Liskeard to Lostwithiel; for while we should
have preferred the coast route, we have no desire to try conclusions
with the ferry at Fowey. The fitful weather has taken another tack and
for half an hour we are deluged, the driving rain turning the narrow
roads into rivers and making progress exceedingly slow. When we reach
the main highway the rain abruptly ceases and the sky again breaks into
mottled patches of blue and white, which scatter sunshine and shadow
over the fields. The country is intensely green and we are now in a spot
which a good authority declares the loveliest inland scenery in
Cornwall. It is the pleasant vale of the River Fowey, in the center of
which stands the charming old town of Lostwithiel, surrounded by
luxuriant pastures which stretch away to the green encircling hills.
There is a fourteenth-century bridge in the town which seems sturdy for
all its six hundred years of flood and storm; and the church spire, with
its richly carved open-work lantern, has been styled "the glory of
Cornwall," and we will agree that it is one of the glories of Cornwall,
in any event. It shows marks of cannon shot, for considerable fighting
raged round the town during the civil war.

So narrow and steep is the street that pitches down the hill into Fowey
that we leave the car at the top and make the descent on foot. Indeed,
the majority of the streets of the town are so narrow and crooked that
it is difficult for a vehicle of any size to get about easily. From the
hill we have a fine view of the little land-locked harbor, dotted with
fishing vessels. It shows to-day a peculiar color effect--dark blue,
almost violet, out seaward, while it fades through many variations of
greens and blues into pale emerald near the shore. The town is clean and
substantial-looking and it must have presented much the same appearance
two hundred years ago--no doubt most of the buildings we now see were
standing then. It is now a mere fisher village, somewhat larger and not
quite so primitive as Polperro, though in the day of smaller ships it
contended with Plymouth and Dartmouth for distinction as chief port of
Cornwall. It was during its period of prosperity and maritime importance
that the two towers, yet standing, were erected to guard the entrance of
the harbor. A chain stretched between these made the town almost
impregnable from attack by sea. Here the old-time seamen dwelt in
security and plotted smuggling expeditions and raids upon the
French--gentle occupations which greatly contributed to the prosperity
of the town. These profitable trades about the middle of the fifteenth
century proved Fowey's undoing. Peace had been declared with France, but
the bold sailors went on with their raids and captured French vessels
quite regardless of the treaties with that nation. This so incensed King
Edward IV. that he caused numerous "leading citizens" of Fowey to be
summarily hanged, levied a heavy fine on the town, and handed its ships
over to the port of Dartmouth. The last proceeding seems like a grim bit
of humor, for Dartmouth sailors were no less offenders against France
than their unfortunate neighbors. After this sad experience it was long
ere Fowey again held up its head and in the meanwhile it was far
distanced by its former rivals. Its sailors, who had wrought many
valorous deeds in the English navy, were little heard of afterwards and
the rash, foolish action of the king practically wiped out an important
port that would still have bred thousands of bold seamen to serve their


At the harbor wall a grizzled old fisherman approaches us and politely
touching his cap offers to row us to a number of places which he
declares we should see. We demur, not being fond of row-boats; he
persists in his broad South-Country speech--to give it is past my
linguistic powers, though I wish I could--"Pardon me for pushing my
trade; it's the only way I have of earning a living now, since I gave up
the sea." We think it worth the modest sum he proposes to charge us for
a trip to hear him talk and we ask him about himself.

"I was a sailor, sir, for more than fifty years and I saw a lot of
hardship in my day with nothing to show for it now. It was all right
when I was young and fond of roving, but as I grew old it began to pall
and I wished I might have been able to lead a different life. But I had
to stick to it until I was too old to stand the work, and I got the
little boat here which makes me a poor living--there's nothing doing
except in summertime and I have to get along as best I can in winter."

"Do you own a house?"

"Own a house?" he echoed in surprise at our ignorance. "Nobody owns a
house here; the squire who lives in the big place on the hill yonder
owns the town--and everybody in it. A common man hasn't any chance to
own anything in England. It doesn't seem fair and I don't understand
it--but we live by it in England--we live by it in England."

We divert his bitter reflections by asking him about the town.

"Don't forget the old Ship Inn," he said, "and the church--it has the
tallest tower in Cornwall. You can see through the big castle on the
hill if you get permission. Any famous people?--why, yes--Sir Arthur
Quiller-Couch lives here. He's our only titled man and some of his
books, they say, tell about Fowey."

We thank our sailor friend and repair to the Ship Inn, as he counseled
us. They show us the "great Tudor room," the pride of the house--a large
beamed and paneled apartment with many black-oak carvings. But the chief
end of the Ship to-day appears to be liquor selling, and not being
bibulously inclined, we depart for the church. It was built in the reign
of Edward IV., just before that monarch dealt the town its death-blow as
a port and marked the end of Fowey's prosperity. The timber roof, the
carved-oak pulpit and stone baptismal font are all unusually fine and
there are some elaborate monuments to old-time dignitaries of the town.
Place House, the great castellated palace on the hill, with immense,
elaborately carved bow-windows, is the dominating feature of the town.
Inside there is some remarkable open timberwork roofing the great hall
and much antique paneling and carving. There is also a valuable
collection of furniture and objects of art which has accumulated in the
four hundred years that the place has belonged to the Treffry family. It
is more of a palatial residence than a fortress and it appears never to
have suffered seriously from siege or warfare.


We are soon away on the highroad to Truro, which proves good though
steep in places. There is a fine medieval church at St. Austell and
another at Probus has one of the most striking towers we saw in England.
It is of later origin than the main body of the church; some two hundred
feet high, and is surmounted by Gothic pinnacles, with carved stone
balustrades extending between them. Near the top it is pierced by eight
large perpendicular windows, two to each side, and it is altogether a
graceful and imposing edifice. Such churches in the poor little towns
that cluster about them--no doubt poorer when the churches were
built--go to show the store the Cornishmen of early days set by their
religion, which led them out of their poverty to rear such stately
structures; but it is quite likely that a goodly part of the profits of
their old occupations--wrecking, smuggling and piracy--went into these
churches as a salve to conscience. Nor is the church-building spirit
entirely extinct, as proven by the magnificent towers of Truro
Cathedral, of which I shall have more to say anon and which soon breaks
into our view.

  From original painting by Warne-Browne]

As a matter of variation we take the southern route by the way of
Helston from Truro to Penzance. This is rougher and has more steep hills
than the direct road through Rudruth. Helston is some ten miles north of
the Lizard Peninsula, where there is much beautiful coast
scenery--especially Kynance Cove. Coming up the road along the coast
toward Marazion, one gets a perfect view of the castle-crowned bulk of
the Cornish St. Michael's Mount, the seat of the St. Aubyns. In the
distance it stands like an immense pyramid against a wide reach of
sunset sky, but as we come nearer the towers and battlements of the
castle come out weird and strange; in the purple shadows the whole vast
pile savors of enchantment. Beyond it shimmers the wide calm of Penzance
Harbor--as it chances, dotted with the dark forms of some fifty
leviathans of the British navy. For there is to be a great naval review
in Penzance the coming week; the king and queen and a host of
celebrities are expected. The town is gay with decorations and delirious
with expectancy of the big events to come. Graham-White, the famous
aviator, is to appear and there are to be many thrilling evolutions and
much powder-burning by the royal fleet. Hotels and lodging-houses are
crowded to the limit and if we have ever been somewhat dubious whether
to try the hospitality of Land's End for the night, it is settled
now--we could hardly stay in Penzance unless we camp on the street. It
was indeed a bitter disappointment to Penzance that the capricious
Cornish weather completely ruined the expected fete. Furious winds and
continual rain drove the fleet to the more sheltered Tor Bay and the
programme, on a greatly reduced scale, took place there. Aside from the
disappointment, the people of the town suffered a heavy loss in the
large sums they had spent in anticipation of the event. But Penzance is
all unconscious of the fate in store for it; its streets are thronged
and it is fairly ablaze with the national colors and elaborate
electrical decorations. We thread our way slowly through its streets
into the lonely indifferent lane that winds over steep and barren hills
to Land's End.


                          LAND'S END TO LONDON

The first sight of Land's End Hotel, a low, drab-colored building
standing on the bleak headland, is apt to beget in the wayfarer who
approaches it at sunset a feeling of regret that he passed through
Penzance without stopping for the night. Nor does his regret grow less
when he is assigned to ill-furnished rooms with uncomfortable-looking
beds--which, I may say, do not belie their looks--or when he sits down
to a dinner that is only a slight improvement upon our memorable banquet
at John O'Groats. But we did not come to Land's End to find London hotel
comforts and conveniences, but for purely sentimental reasons, which
should preclude any fault-finding if accommodations are not just to our
liking. It was our fancy to spend a night at both Land's End and John
O'Groats--and it must be largely imagination that attracts so many
tourists to these widely separated localities, since there are surely
hundreds of bits of English and Scottish coast more picturesque or
imposing than either.

  From original painting by Thos. Moran, N. A.]

But here we are, in any event, and we go forth in the gray twilight to
take note of our surroundings. An old fellow who has been watching us
closely since our arrival follows us and in a language that puzzles us a
little urges the necessity of his services as guide if we are to see the
wonders of Land's End. We are glad enough to have his assistance and he
leads us toward the broken cliffs, thrusting their rugged bulk far into
the white-capped waves which come rolling landward. The sky and sea are
still tinged with the hues of sunset and a faint glow touches the
reddish rocks along the shores. It is too late for the inspiring effect
shown in Mr. Moran's wonderful picture--had we been an hour earlier we
might have beheld such a scene. Subdued purplish hues now prevail and a
dark violet-colored sea thunders upon the coast. The wind is blowing--to
our notion, a gale, though our old guide calls it a stiff breeze.

"A 'igh wind, sir? Wot would you call a wind that piles up the waves so
you can't see yonder lighthouse, that's two hundred and fifty feet tall?
That's wot I'd call a 'igh wind, sir. And you'd be drenched to the skin
in a minute standing where you are."

We revise our ideas of high winds accordingly, but a stiff breeze is
quite enough for us, especially when the old man urges us to come out
upon what seems to us an exceedingly precarious perch--because it is the
"last rock in England." It stands almost sheer as a chimney with the sea
foaming in indescribable fury some fifty or sixty feet below, and we
have to decline, despite our guide's insistence that we are missing the
chief sensation of Land's End. It was no doubt this identical spot which
so impressed John Wesley, who visited Land's End in 1743, when he made
his famous preaching tour in Cornwall.

"It was an awful sight," he wrote. "But how will this melt away when God
ariseth in judgment. The sea beneath doth indeed boil like a pot. One
would indeed think the sea to be hoary! But though they swell, they
cannot prevail. He shall set the bounds which they cannot pass!" But the
great preacher did not say whether he stood on the "last rock" or not.

We follow our guide in a strenuous scramble over the huge rocks to reach
particular viewpoints, and, indeed, there are many awe-inspiring vistas
of roaring ocean and rock-bound coast. Everywhere the sea attacks the
shore in seeming fury, the great foam-crested waves sweeping against the
jagged edges and breaking into a deluge of salt spray.

"I've seen more than one ship go to pieces on these rocks in winter
storms," says our guide. "At the last wreck twenty-seven lives were
lost. I recovered one body myself--a fine Spanish-looking gentleman six
feet three inches tall," he goes on, with an evident relish for gruesome

"The winter storms must be terrible, indeed," we venture.

"You can't imagine how dreadful," he answers. "I've seen the sea so
rough that for three months no boat could reach yonder lighthouse a mile
away; but the keeper was lucky to have food and he kept his light
shining all the time. It's a dreary, lonely country in winter time, but
more people would come if they only knew what an awful sight it is to
see the sea washing over these headlands."

The same story is told--in more polished language--by a writer who spent
the winter in Cornwall and often visited Land's End on stormy nights:
"The raving of the wind among the rocks; the dark ocean--exceedingly
dark except when the flying clouds were broken and the stars shining in
the clear spaces touched the big black incoming waves with a steely gray
light; the jagged isolated rocks, on which so many ships have been
shattered, rising in awful blackness from the spectral foam that
appeared and vanished and appeared again; the multitudinous hoarse
sounds of the sea, with throbbing and hollow booming noises in the
caverns beneath--all together served to bring back something of the old
vanished picture or vision of Bolerium as we first imagine it. The glare
from the various lighthouses visible at this point only served to
heighten the inexpressibly sombre effect, since shining from a distance
they make the gloomy world appear vaster. Down in the south, twenty-five
miles away, the low clouds were lit up at short intervals by wide white
flashes, as of sheet lightning, from the Lizard light, the most powerful
of all lights, the reflection of which may be seen at a distance of
sixty or seventy miles at sea. In front of the Land's End promontory,
within five miles of it, was the angry red glare from the Longships
tower, and further away to the left the white revolving light of the
Wolf lighthouse."

Darkness has fallen and almost blotted out the wild surroundings save
for the gleams which flash from the lighthouses across the somber
waters. We wend our way back to our inn to rest as best we may in
anything but comfortable beds after an unusually strenuous day; we have
traveled but one hundred and twenty miles since leaving Plymouth in the
morning, but we have seen so much and had such varied experiences that
we have a dim feeling of having come many times as far.

A glorious morning gives us the opportunity of seeing the wild coast at
its best. A dark blue sea is breaking on the reddish brown rocks and
chafing into white foam at their feet. We wander out on the headland to
get a farewell glimpse of the scene--for there is little to tempt one to
linger at Land's End; you may see it all at a sunset and sunrise. There
is no historic ruin on the spot, and surely any thought of the hotel
will hasten your departure if you ever had any intention of lingering.

Sennan, a forlorn collection of stone huts about a mile from Land's End,
is worth noting only as a type of the few tiny villages in the bit of
barren country beyond Penzance and St. Ives. There is nothing to catch
the artistic eye in these bleak little places; they lack the quaintness
of Polperro or St. Ives and the coziness and color of the
flower-embowered cottages of Somerset and Hampshire. The isolated
farmhouses show the same characteristics and a description by a writer
who lived in one of these during the winter months is full of interest:

"Life on these small farms is incredibly rough. One may guess what it is
like from the outward aspect of such places. Each, it is true, has its
own individual character, but they are all pretty much alike in their
dreary, naked and almost squalid appearance. Each, too, has its own
ancient Cornish name, some of these very fine or very pretty, but you
are tempted to rename them in your own mind Desolation Farm, Dreary
Farm, Stony Farm, Bleak Farm and Hungry Farm. The farmhouse is a small,
low place and invariably built of granite, with no garden or bush or
flower about it. The one I stayed at was a couple of centuries old, but
no one had ever thought of growing anything, even a marigold, to soften
its bare, harsh aspect. The house itself could hardly be distinguished
from the outhouses clustered round it. Several times on coming back to
the house in a hurry and not exercising proper care I found I had made
for the wrong door and got into the cow-house, or pig-house, or a shed
of some sort, instead of into the human habitation. The cows and other
animals were all about and you came through deep mud into the
living-room. The pigs and fowls did not come in but were otherwise free
to go where they liked. The rooms were very low; my hair, when I stood
erect, just brushed the beams; but the living-room or kitchen was
spacious for so small a house, and had the wide old open fireplace still
common in this part of the country. Any other form of fireplace would
not be suitable when the fuel consists of furze and turf."

Such are the towns and farmhouses of this farthest Cornwall to-day--a
country once prosperous on account of tin and copper mines which are all
now abandoned. I doubt if there is a more poverty-stricken rural section
in the Kingdom than Cornwall. I noted in a paper edited by a socialist
candidate for the House of Commons a curious outburst over a donation
made by the king to the poor of Cornwall, which was accompanied by a
little homily from His Majesty on the necessity of the beneficiaries
helping themselves. The article is so significant in the light it throws
on certain social conditions and as illustrating a greater degree of
freedom of speech than is generally supposed to exist in England that I
feel it worth quoting:

"Although we do not doubt the King's longing to help all his people, we
must be forgiven if we refuse to be impressed by his apparent intensity
of feeling. Not that we blame the King. In order to feel decently about
the poor, one must have 'had some,' so to speak. And we can hardly
imagine that King George knows much concerning the objects of his
sympathy, when we consider the annual financial circumstances of his own
compact little family. In the year that is ending they will have drawn
between them the helpful pittance of six hundred thirty-four thousand
pounds. This is exclusive of the income of the Prince of Wales, derived
from the revenues of the Duchy of Cornwall. And even if this sum has
been badly drained by Yuletide beneficence (as faintly threatened in the
Church Army donation) the New Year will bring sure replenishment of the
royal purse.

"We should not have felt called upon to mention these little details
were it not for the offensive phrase--'may they show their gratitude by
industry and vigorous efforts to help themselves.' How can the poor
devils who live in the foetid hovels which dot the Duchy of Cornwall
'help themselves?' Out of their shameful earnings--when they have any
earnings--they must first pay toll to the bloated rent-roll of the
King's infant son. Out of their constant penury they must help to
provide an extravagant Civil List, to enable their Monarch to lecture on
self-help at the end of a donation of twenty-five pounds. Help
themselves? Show their gratitude? How can they help themselves when the
earth was stolen from them before their birth, when their tools of
production are owned and controlled by a group of moneyed parasites,
when their laws are made and administered by the class which lives on
their labours and fattens on their helplessness? Show their gratitude?
Heaven have mercy upon us! What have they to be grateful for--these
squalid, dependent, but always necessary outcasts of our civilization?"

I fear this is pretty much of a digression, though I think an
interesting one. Not all of Cornwall shows evidence of such poverty--the
country steadily improves as we hasten to the fine old town of Truro and
there is much good country beyond. Though we have come but thirty-six
miles from Land's End, the indisposition of one of our party makes it
advisable to pause in the old Cornish capital, where we may be sure of
comfortable quarters at the Red Lion.

We find this a commodious, substantial structure, built about two and a
half centuries ago, with a fine entrance hall from which a black-oak
stairway leads to the upper floors. Its accommodations and service seem
to average with the best provincial hotels in towns the size of Truro,
and, altogether, the Red Lion is perhaps as good a place to spend a day
of enforced idleness as one is likely to come across.

The town itself has little enough to interest the stranger, as I found
in wandering about for some hours. Even the splendid cathedral lacks
antiquity and historic association, for it still wants a few finishing
touches. It has been about thirty years in building and more than a
million dollars has been expended in the work. The exterior conforms to
the best early English traditions, the most striking feature being the
three splendid towers--the central one rising to a height of two hundred
and fifty feet. The interior is somewhat glaring and bare, owing largely
to the absence of stained-glass windows, of which there are only a few.
A portion of the old parish church is included in the building and
contains a few ancient monuments of little importance. On the whole,
Truro Cathedral is a fine example of modern church architecture and
proves that the art is not a lost one by any means. I was fortunate in
happening to be inside during an organ rehearsal and more majestic and
inspiring music I never heard than the solemn melodies which filled the
vast vacant building.

We are ready for the road after a day's sojourn in Truro, and depart in
a steady rain which continues until nightfall. Our road--which we have
traversed before--by way of St. Columb Major and Camelford to
Launceston, is hilly and heavy and in the pouring rain we make only slow
progress. The gray mist envelops the landscape; but it matters little,
for the greater part of our road runs between the dirt fences I have
described heretofore, which shut out much of the country, even on fine
days. St. Columb and Camelford are dreary, angular little towns
stretching closely along the highroad, quite unattractive in fine
weather and under present conditions positively ugly. Camelford, some
say, is the Camelot of the Arthurian romances, but surely no vestige of
romance lingers about it to-day. From here we make a wild dash across
the moor to Launceston--the rain is falling more heavily and the wind
blowing a gale. Our meter seldom registers under forty miles, a pace
that lands us quickly at the door of the White Hart; we are damp and
cold and the old inn seems a timely haven, indeed. A change of raiment
and warm luncheon makes us feel more at peace with the world, but we do
not muster courage to venture out in the storm again. Perhaps if we
could have foreseen that the following day would be no better, we should
have resumed our journey. Indeed, the next morning the storm that drove
the fleet away from Penzance was in full sway over Cornwall and a
dreary, rain-swept country it was. The road northward to Holsworthy and
Great Torrington is little else but a narrow and hilly lane, though as
dreary a section as one will find in Cornwall or Devon, and here, also,
the hedges intercept our view much of the way. The towns, too, are quite
devoid of interest save the fine Perpendicular church which towers over
Holsworthy. Bideford, famous in Kingsley's "Westward Ho!" and
Barnstaple, with its potteries which produce the cheap but not
inartistic "Barum ware," we have visited before and both have much worth
seeing. We are now out of the zone of the storm and the weather is more
tolerable; we have really been suffering from the cold in midsummer--not
an uncommon thing in Britain.

There are two first-class old inns at Taunton--on different occasions
people of the town had assured us that each was the best--and though
Baedeker gives the London the preference and honors it with the much
coveted star, we thought the Castle equally good. It is a gray-stone,
ivy-covered building near the castle and if our luncheon may be taken as
an index, its service is all that can be desired.

A little way out of Taunton we notice a monument a short distance from
the roadside and easily identify it from pictures which we have seen as
the memorial erected to commemorate the victory of King Alfred over the
Danes at Sedgemoor. In olden times this whole section was a vast marsh
in which was the Isle of Athelney, surrounded by an almost impenetrable
morass. The king and a band of faithful followers built a causeway to
the island, which served as a retreat while marshalling sufficient force
to cope with the invaders. The rally of the Saxons around the intrepid
king finally resulted in a signal victory, which broke the Danish power
in England. Alfred built an abbey near the spot as a mark of pious
gratitude for his success, but scarcely a trace remains of the structure
to-day. In the same vicinity is supposed to have occurred the famous
incident of King Alfred and the cakes, which he allowed to burn while
watching them. Alfred was then in hiding, disguised as a farm laborer,
and received a severe berating from the angry housewife for his

But Sedgemoor is historic in a double sense, for here the conflict
occurred between the forces of James II. and the ill-fated Duke of
Monmouth, to which we have previously referred. The rebels planned a
night attack on the royal army, and, knowing that carelessness and
debauchery would prevail in the king's camp on Sunday, they chose that
day for the assault. The accidental discharge of a pistol gave warning
of the approach of the assailants and they had the farther misfortune to
be hopelessly entangled in the deep drainage ditches which then (as now)
intersected the valley. The result was a disastrous defeat for the
Duke's followers, of whom a thousand were slain. Monmouth himself was
discovered by his enemies after two days' search, hiding in a ditch, and
was duly executed in London Tower. Some five hundred of his
followers--mostly ignorant peasants--were hanged at Taunton and
Dorchester by orders of the infamous Jeffreys. This battle, which took
place on Sunday, July 5, 1685, was the last of any consequence to be
fought on English soil. The historic field to-day is green and
prosperous-looking and the only indication that it was once a marshy fen
is the ditches which drain its surplus waters.

We pass Glastonbury and Wells, which might well detain us had we not
visited them previously, for in all England there are few towns richer
in tradition and history than the former; and the latter's cathedral no
well-informed traveler would wish to miss. Bath, we know from several
previous sojourns, affords an unequalled stopping-place for the night
and we soon renew acquaintance at the Empire Hotel, where we are now
fairly well known. Our odometer shows an unusually long day's run, much
of which was under trying conditions of road and weather. This hotel
belongs to a syndicate which owns several others, in London and at
various resorts throughout the country. A guest who enters into a
contract may stay the year round at these hotels for a surprisingly low
figure, going from one to the other according to his pleasure--to
Folkestone, for instance, if he wishes the seaside, or to London if he
inclines towards the metropolis. Many English people of leisure avail
themselves of this plan, which, it would seem, has its advantages in
somewhat relieving the monotony of life in a single hotel.

Though we have been in Bath several times, something has always
interfered with our plan to visit the abbey church and we resolve to
make amends before we set out Londonward. There are few statelier church
edifices in the island--the "Lantern of England," as the guide-books
style it, on account of its magnificent windows. These are mainly modern
and prove that the art of making stained glass is far from lost, as has
sometimes been insisted. So predominating are the windows, in fact, that
one writer declares, "It is the beauty of a flower a little overblown,
though it has its charms just the same." The most remarkable of all is
the great western group of seven splendid windows illustrating biblical
subjects in wonderfully harmonious colors. As may be imagined, the
interior is unusually well lighted, though the soft color tones prevent
any garish effect. The intricate tracery of the fine fan vaulted ceiling
is clearly brought out and also the delicate carving on the screen--a
modern restoration, by the way. The monuments are tasteless and, in the
main, of little importance, though our attention is naturally arrested
by a memorial to "William Bingham, Senator of the United States of
America," who died at Bath in 1804.

The exterior of the abbey--they tell us--has many architectural defects,
though these are not apparent to the layman. The walls are supported by
flying buttresses and the west front shows curious sculptures
representing the angels upon Jacob's ladder. The tower, one hundred and
sixty-five feet in height, is a pure example of English Perpendicular
and is rather peculiar in that it is oblong rather than square.

As we leave the town we cannot but admire its cleanliness and beautiful
location. It skirts both banks of the River Avon and is surrounded by an
amphitheater of wooded hills. To our notion it is the finest of inland
English resort towns and certainly none has a more varied past, nor has
any other figured so extensively in literature. It is about one hundred
miles from London by road, and is a favorite goal for the motorist from
that city.

The road to London is a fine broad highway leading through Marlborough
and Reading. It proves a splendid farewell run to our third long motor
tour through Britain; we have covered in all nearly twenty thousand
miles of highways and byways during varying weather. If there has been
much sunshine, there have also been weeks of rain and many lowering
gloomy days. There is scarce an historic shrine of importance in the
Kingdom that has escaped us and we have visited hundreds of odd corners
not even mentioned in the guide-books. And, best of all, we have come to
know the people and have gained considerable familiarity with their
institutions, which has not lessened our respect and admiration for the
Motherland. Indeed, I feel that our experience sufficiently warrants a
chapter on the English at home--as we saw them--and I make no apology
for concluding this book with such. It is not free from criticism, I
know, but could an honest observer write more favorably of our own
country--if conditions were such that he might tour our populous states
as thoroughly as we have done Britain?

Our last day on the road fulfills the ideal of English midsummer; the
storm has passed, leaving the country fresh and bright; green fields
alternate with the waving gold of the ripening harvest, and here and
there we pass an old village or a solitary cottage by the roadside--all
typical of the rural England we have come to love so much. We drive
leisurely over the fine road and linger an hour or two in Marlborough
after luncheon at the Ailesbury Arms, whose excellence we have proven on
previous occasions. We find an antique-shop here with a store of old
silver that rivals our discovery in Largo, and the prices asked are no

From Reading we follow the Thames River road, which for some miles
skirts the very shore of the historic stream and passes within a distant
view of the towers of Windsor, rising in all their romantic majesty
against the sunset sky. From Windsor we follow the familiar road to the
heart of the teeming metropolis and our third long motor pilgrimage in
Summer Britain is at its close.

  From original painting by the late Edward Moran]



One who has spent many months in the United Kingdom, traveling about
twenty thousand miles by motor and considerably by train, and who has
met and conversed with the common people of every section of the country
in the most retired nooks and in metropolitan cities, may, I hope
without undue assumption, venture a few remarks on the English people
and their institutions. One would be a dull observer indeed if he did
not, with the opportunities which we had, see and learn many things
concerning present-day Britain.

It is the custom of some American writers, even of recent date, to
allege that a general dislike of Americans exists in the Kingdom; and it
would not be very strange if this should be true, considering the manner
in which many Americans conduct themselves while abroad. Our own
experience was that such an idea is not well founded. In all our
wanderings we saw no evidence whatever of such dislike. In England
everyone knows an American at sight and had there been the slightest
unfriendliness towards Americans as a class, it would certainly have
been apparent to us during such a tour as our own. I think many
incidents cited in this as well as in my former books go to prove that
the reverse is true, but these incidents are only a fraction of what I
might have given. That a certain uncongeniality, due to a difference in
temperament and lack of mutual understanding, exists between the average
American and the average Englishman, we may freely admit, but it would
be wrong to view this as personal dislike of each other. I have no doubt
that even this barrier will disappear in time, just as the dislike and
jealousy which really did exist a quarter of a century ago have
disappeared. Who could now conceive of the situation that moved
Nathaniel Hawthorne to write in "Our Old Home" fifty years ago:

"An American is not apt to love the English people, on whatever length
of acquaintance. I fancy they would value our regard and even
reciprocate it in their ungracious way if we could give it to them, in
spite of all rebuffs; but they are beset by a curious and inevitable
infelicity which compels them, as it were, to keep up what they consider
a wholesome feeling of bitterness between themselves and all other
nations, especially Americans."

Of our own experience, at least, we may speak with authority. As a
result of our several sojourns in Britain and extensive journeyings in
every part of the Kingdom, we came to have only the kindest regard for
the people and greater appreciation of their apparent good will. As we
became better informed we were only the more interested in the history
and traditions of the Motherland, and we almost came to feel something
of the pride and satisfaction that must fill the breast of the patriotic
Englishman himself. Nothing will serve more to impress on one the close
connection between the two countries than the common literature which
one finds everywhere in both; and you will pass scarce a town or village
on all the highways and byways of the Old Country that has not its
namesake in America.

Our impressions as to the fairness and honesty of the English people
generally were most favorable. First of all, our dealings with hotels
were perhaps the most numerous of our business transactions. Never to my
recollection did we inquire in advance the price of accommodations, and
I recall scarcely a single instance where we had reason to believe this
had been taken advantage of. This was indeed in striking contrast to our
experience with innkeepers on the Continent. For an American in
possession of a motor to take up quarters in the average French or
German hotel without close bargaining and an exact understanding as to
charges would soon mean financial ruin to the tourist of moderate means.
We could give almost as good report of the many English shopkeepers with
whom we dealt--there was no evidence of any attempt to overcharge us on
account of being tourists. Nor did I ever have a cab or carriage-driver
try to exact more than was coming to him--though of course a small extra
fee is always expected--certainly a contrast with New York City, for
instance, where it is always hazardous to get into a cab without an
iron-clad agreement with the driver. Perhaps the credit for this state
of affairs may be due not so much to the honesty of the English Jehus as
to a public sentiment which will not tolerate robbery. Nor should I fail
to mention that in twenty thousand miles of touring our car was left
unguarded hundreds of times with much movable property in it, and during
our whole journey we never lost the value of a farthing from theft.

It is no new thing to say that the average Englishman is insular--but
this became much more to us than mere hearsay before we left the
country. The vision of few of the people extends beyond the Island, and
we might almost say, beyond an immediate neighborhood. There is a great
disinclination to get out of an established groove; outside of certain
classes there appears to be little ambition to travel. I know of one
intelligent young man of thirty who had never seen salt water--nowhere
in England more than a hundred miles distant. I was told that a journey
from a country town in Scotland or North England to London is an event
in a lifetime with almost any one of the natives. The world beyond the
confines of England is vague indeed; Germany, the universal bugbear, is
best known and cordially hated, but of America only the haziest notions
prevail. Not one in a thousand has any conception of our distances and
excepting possibly a dozen cities, one town in America is quite as
unknown as another.

Akin to this insularity is the lack of enterprise and adaptability
everywhere noticeable--a clinging to outworn customs and methods. Since
the English vision does not extend to the outer world, but little seems
to be expected or even desired of it. There is not the constant desire
for improvement, and the eager seeking after some way to do things
quicker and better--so characteristic of America--is usually wanting. An
American manufacturer will discard even new machinery if something more
efficient comes out, but an Englishman only thinks of making his present
machine last to the very limit of endurance. A friend told me of a
relative of his who boasted that in his mill a steam engine had been
running fifty years; it never occurred to the mill-owner that the old
engine almost yearly ate up the cost of a new one on account of
inefficiency and wasted fuel.

Often in garages where I took my car to have it cleaned and oiled, I
could not help noting the inefficiency of the workmen. At times I had
the engine crank case removed and cleaned and this one little thing gave
a painful insight into the methods of the English workman. Nothing could
be simpler than removing and replacing the dust shield under the
engine--simply snapping six spring catches out of and into position. Yet
I have seen one or even two men crawl around under the car for a half
hour or more in performing this simple operation. In replacing the oil
reservoir and pump I found that nothing would take the place of personal
supervision--a cotter pin, gasket or what not would surely be left out
to give further trouble. Repairing an American car in a provincial town
would be a serious job unless the owner or his driver were able to
oversee and direct the work.

As I have stated, we left England with decidedly favorable impressions
of the country and people; so much so that I doubt not many of our
fellow-countrymen would think us unduly prejudiced. But all this did not
blind us to the fact that England in many regards is in a distinctly bad
way and that a thorough awakening must come if she is to avoid sure
decadence. Indeed, there are many, chief among them distinguished
Englishmen and colonials, who aver that such decadence has already
begun, but there is much difference of opinion as to its cause and as to
what may best check its progress.

If I were to give my own humble opinion as to the chief disadvantage
from which the country suffers and the most depressing influence on
national character, I should place feudalism first of all and by this I
mean the system of inherited titles, offices and entailed estates. I
know that the government of the Kingdom is regarded as one of great
efficiency and stability, and I think justly so; and this is often urged
by apologists for the feudal system. But the Englishman is slow to learn
that just as stable and quite as efficient government may be had without
the handicap of outworn medievalism. That the present system seems to
work well in England is not due to any inherent merit it may possess,
but to the homogeneity of the nation, and to a universal spirit of
law-abiding that would insure success for almost any respectable type of
government. It does not work well in Ireland and never has; and it has
substantially been abandoned in the self-governing colonies.

It seems to me, however, that the question as to how the feudal system
works in government is of little consequence as compared with its
ultimate effect on national character under modern conditions; for it is
all out of accord with the spirit of modern progress, and if it ever
served a useful purpose, it has well outlived it. One may justly claim
that the king and the nobility have really little to do with governing,
especially since the abolition of the veto of the House of Lords; that
the will of the people finds expression in England quite as strongly as
anywhere; but even if we admit this, I cannot see that it offers any
argument in favor of feudalism. No one can make a tour of England such
as ours and not observe the spirit of servility among the common people
due to the inbred reverence for a title. Indeed, there is no feeling in
England that all men are born free and equal, or that one man is quite
as good as another so long as he behaves himself. A mere title, Sir,
Duke, Earl, Lord or what-not, creates at once a different order of being
and the toadyism to such titular distinctions is plainly noticeable
everywhere. An earl or a duke is at our hotel; he may be a bankrupt,
inconsequential fellow, it is true; he may not have a single personal
trait to command respect and he may not be engaged in any useful
industry. But there is much salaaming and everyone about the place
assumes an awe-stricken, menial attitude, merely because the gentleman
has the prefix Earl or Duke--there can be no other reason. Is it strange
that such a spirit causes the common people to lose self-reliance and
yield up their ambition to be anything more than their fathers before
them? A proportion of the nobility may be composed of men of character
and ability, fitted to occupy positions of authority and public
responsibility and the present king may be all that a king should be;
but the system is wrong and its effect on English character can hardly
fail to have an untoward influence on the nation.

I find this view borne out in a guarded way in a book recently published
by a prominent colonial official who spent some time in England. He
insists that the lack of patriotism, which one can hardly fail to
observe, is due to the present social system. He declares that the
common people take little interest in national affairs and make no study
of problems confronting the government. They expect the so-called "upper
classes" to do the governing for them; there is no need to concern
themselves over matters that must be settled by a House of Lords in
whose choosing they can have no voice.

The recruits to the nobility now come almost exclusively from the
wealthy class; we often have flung in our faces in England the taunt
that there is an aristocracy of wealth in America, and that the pursuit
of the Almighty Dollar is the all-prevailing passion. It may be just, in
the same general way that I intend these remarks to apply to England,
but we can at least retort that our oil, beef, mining and railway
magnates cannot purchase a title and found a "family," thus becoming in
the public eye a superior class of beings and established as our
hereditary rulers. A wealthy brewer may not become "my lord" for a
consideration, in any event.

A recent American writer makes the curious apology for the House of
Lords as a legislative body that it affords the English people the
services of the most successful moneyed men in framing laws and that the
sons of such men are pretty sure to be practical, well-trained fellows
themselves. He also argues that the families usually die out in a few
generations, thus introducing new blood continually and forming, in his
estimation, a most capable legislative body. The preposterous nature of
such statements can best be shown by trying to apply such a system to
the United States Senate. If our senators, for instance, were hereditary
lords, recruited from the oil, beef, brewing, mining or railway magnates
aforementioned, what might the American people expect from them? We
complain vigorously if any senator is shown to be influenced by such
interests and more than one legislator has found out to his grief that
such a connection will not be tolerated. Suppose we had a system that
put the principals themselves in a permanent legislative body and
invested them with all the glamour of "his grace" or "my lord?" Quite
unthinkable--and yet such is the system in Britain.

And these self-sacrificing hereditary legislators are no fonder of
bearing the real burdens of the country than our own plutocrats are.
There is much complaint in England that in the ranks of the nobility are
to be found the most flagrant tax dodgers in the Kingdom. Nor does this
complaint lack for vigorous utterance--a most hopeful sign of the times,
to my notion. But recently a London paper exploited the case of the
Marquis of Bute, owner of Cardiff Castle--and most of Cardiff, for that
matter--who returned his personal tax at less than a thousand pounds,
and that included Cardiff Castle and grounds, which represent literally
millions! Yet no man in the Kingdom is better able to afford payment of
his just tax than this nobleman. To show the gross injustice of his tax,
a comparison was made of the castle with a humble tailor shop in
Cardiff, ninety by one hundred and twenty feet, which was taxed at a
higher figure! The newspaper in question also declared that this case
was typical of tax-dodging lords all over the country.

That there is a strong under-current against the feudal system cannot be
doubted; we found it everywhere, though at times but half expressed and
again only to be inferred, but it exists none the less. Indeed, more
recent developments have shown the extent of such sentiment in the
overthrow of the veto power of the Lords. This is a great step in
advance, though England would be infinitely the gainer if the feudal
system were abolished and not merely modified. This antagonism does not
extend to royalty--that institution escapes through the popularity of
the present king and queen. But the time may come when a weak and
unpopular king will turn public sentiment against the very keystone of
feudalism and the whole structure is likely to fall. When one recollects
the furore that prevailed in England when the former king as Prince of
Wales was mixed up with the Baccarat scandals, it is easy to see how
much royalty owes its existence to good behavior. At that time doubt was
freely expressed as to whether the prince would ever be king of England,
but he lived it all down by his subsequent good record. I had many
intelligent men admit that "your system of government is right; we shall
come to it some time," or words to that effect, and we heard many
ill-concealed flings at the nobility. "We are all the property of the
nobility," said one intelligent young shopman of whom in the course of
conversation we inquired if he owned his home. "No one has any chance to
own anything or be anything in England." And in a prayer-book at
Stratford Church we found the petition "for the nobility" erased with
heavy pencil lines.

I give these as typical of many similar instances, but I have no space
in this book for discussion of the impressions I record. A volume would
be required should I attempt this. I can only set down these random
notes without elaborate argument. And yet, what could be more convincing
that the social system of England is wrong than the hopelessness we
found everywhere and the refrain that we heard oftener than any other,
"A common man has no chance in England?" If he is not fortunate or a
genius, there is nothing for him. He must either succumb to inevitable
mediocrity and poverty or get away to some new country to gain the
opportunity of competence and social promotion in any degree.

It is to the feudal system that can be charged the astonishing state of
affairs in England that makes a gentleman of a person with no
occupation--a loafer, we would style him in America--and socially
degrades the useful citizen engaged in trade. On this particular phase I
will not pass my own comment, but quote from a book, "Wake Up, England,"
by P. A. Vaile, Premier of New Zealand, lately issued by a London

"There is perhaps nothing in English life so disgusting to a man who has
not the scales upon his eyes as the loathsome snobbery of those who
profess to despise a man because his income is derived from a trade or
business. It is wholly inexcusable and contemptible. Trade, instead of
being considered honourable and dignified, is, in the eyes of every
snob, a degradation. Unfortunately, snobs in England are not scarce.

"The tradesman is himself in a great measure to blame for this, for he
accepts humbly as his due the contempt that is meted out to him. Most of
those who so freely despise the poor necessary man of trade, have a
portion of their savings, when they are lucky enough to have any,
invested in some large millinery or pork-butcher's business that has
been floated into a limited liability company--yet to them the man who
earns their dividends is absolutely outside the pale.

"If there is any nation that I know that is hopelessly bourgeois, it is
England. Why can we not be manly enough to recognize the fact, to
acknowledge and freely admit to ourselves that we are a nation of very
commonplace individuals, mostly shopkeepers, that it is the shopkeepers
who have made the nation what she is, and that commerce is an occupation
worthy of any gentleman instead of being a calling which merits the
contempt of the idle, the rich and the foolish?"

If such a condition prevails in England, it can surely be chargeable to
nothing else than a system which places the stamp of superiority on the
idler and puts him in a position where he can assume a patronizing air
towards those who are the backbone and mainstay of the nation.

Hand in hand with outworn feudalism goes the established church, of
which it is really a part and parcel. A state religion of which a none
too religious king may be the head, and whose control may fall into the
hands of politicians who are frequently without the first qualification
of churchmen, is an incongruity at best. If America has proven anything,
she has demonstrated that absolute separation is best for both church
and state; that true religious freedom and amity can best be conserved
by it. But in England the established church is a constant bone of
contention; its supercilious, holier-than-thou attitude toward the other
churches is the cause of much heart-burning and friction. It has the
sanction of the state, the social rank, the great church buildings and
the traditions, and forces other Christian denominations into the
attitude of the poor and rather shabby relation of a wealthy
aristocrat--the wealth in this case not measured merely in money. Class
distinction, the curse of England everywhere, is only fomented by the
attitude of the established church. In religious matters it is not human
nature to concede to anyone else superiority, and not until the Church
of England places itself on common ground with its contemporaries, will
true fraternity among the different denominations be possible in England
as it is rapidly becoming in America. I remember a kindly old gentleman
who showed us much courtesy in the English Boston in pointing out to us
the places of interest, but who did not fall in with our enthusiasm over
the great church.

"Ah, yes," he said. "It once belonged to Rome, who grew arrogant and
oppressive--and fell; it now belongs to a church that is just as
arrogant and would be as much of an oppressor if she dared--and her
downfall is just as sure." And the enthusiasm with which he pointed out
the plain Wesleyan chapel betrayed his own predilections.

That the educational system of England is faulty and inefficient we have
the testimony of many leading English educators themselves. The constant
interference of the Church of England and the Catholics with the public
schools is greatly responsible for the chaos of the educational
situation of the country. Conditions in England are such that a most
excellent public school system might easily be maintained. The density
of population and the perfect roads would make every rural school easily
accessible, and there would be distinct advantages not enjoyed by many
American communities which have far better schools. But church jealousy,
hidebound tradition, and the almost universal inefficiency of English
school-teachers, are obstacles hard to overcome. I cannot discuss so
great a question in the limits of a short chapter, but the testimony of
the most representative English educators may be found in the report of
the commission which visited American schools under the guidance of Mr.
Alfred Mosely.

That England, generally speaking, is better and more efficiently
governed than the United States is no proof that its system is as good
as our own, or that its possibilities equal ours. It is rather due to
the homogeneity of the masses and to a more prevalent respect for law
and authority among the people. Justice is surer and swifter when the
criminal's offense is once proven in the courts; but the many
technicalities and the positive nature of proof required enables a large
number of swindlers and rascals to keep at large. Dead-beats will evade
debts, irresponsible tenants refuse payment of rents for indefinite
periods, and petty swindlers go quite free--all of whom would be given
short shrift in America--simply because it is a dangerous matter to risk
infringing the "rights of the subject" and thus lay oneself liable to
heavy damages should charges fail of proof.

The excellence of the British police system is proverbial; in efficiency
and honesty of administration it has no parallel in America. Bribery and
corruption among policemen are unknown, as Americans sometimes learn to
their grief--illustrated by the instance of a rich New Yorker who
offered a gold coin to an officer who had held up his motor for
speeding. The offender was fined, not only for speeding, but much more
heavily for attempted bribery--as it was justly regarded by the court.
From the hundreds of policemen of whom we made inquiries--often very
stupid, no doubt, to the officer--we never had an answer with the
slightest trace of ill nature or impatience. Frequently the officer gave
us much assistance in a friendly way and information as to places of
interest. The British policeman has no swagger or ostentation about him;
he carries no weapon--not even the club so indispensible in the
States--yet he will control the riotous crowds more effectively than his
American brother; but we should remember that even a riotous English mob
has more respect for law than one on our side. He appears to appreciate
thoroughly the value of his position to him personally and his dignity
as a conserver of law and order, which he represents rather than some
ward politician or saloon-keeper.

And, speaking of saloons--public houses, they call them in Britain--the
drink evil averages worse than in the United States. Three quarters of a
billion dollars go directly every year for spirituous liquors and no
statistics could show the indirect cost in pauperism, suffering and
crime, to say nothing of the deleterious effect on the health of a large
portion of the people. In America liquor in the country hotel is an
exception, constantly becoming rarer; in England it is the universal
rule. Every hotel is quite as much a saloon, in our vernacular, as a
house of entertainment for travelers. Women with children in their arms
frequent the low-grade drink houses and women as bar-maids serve the
liquors. More than once I had to exercise great caution on account of
reeling drunken men on the streets of the smaller towns; but we had only
hearsay for it that in the slums of Liverpool and London one may find
hundreds of women dead drunk. There was much indignation over an
insinuation made in parliament against the character of the bar-maids,
but it is hard to see how many of these women, surrounded by the
influences forced upon them by their vocation, can lead a decent life
for any length of time.

Surely the drink evil in Great Britain and Ireland is a serious one and
deserves far more active measures than are being taken against it. That
sentiment is slowly awakening is shown by the fight made for the
"licensing bill" which proposed a step, though a distant one, towards
repression of the traffic. That the almost world-wide movement against
the liquor business will make headway in England is reasonably certain
and those who have her welfare at heart will earnestly hope that its
progress may be rapid.

But in this connection I wish to emphasize that my observations on the
liquor question in Britain are broadly general; there are millions of
people in the Kingdom to whom they do not apply, and there are whole
sections which should be excepted had I space to particularize. North
Wales, for instance, has a population that for sobriety and general
freedom from the evils of drink will rival any section of similar
population anywhere. The mining towns of Southern Wales, however, are
quite the reverse in this particular.

While Wales is a loyal and patriotic part of the British Empire, there
are many ways in which the people are quite distinct and peculiar as
compared with native Englishmen. Perhaps the most notable point of
difference is consistent opposition to the established church, which has
little support in Wales and has been practically forced upon the Welsh
people by the British government. Only recently a measure for
disestablishment has been entertained in parliament and it is sure to
come sooner or later.

For the people of Northern Wales we came to have the highest respect and
even regard. They were universally kind and courteous and their
solicitude for the stranger within their gates seemed to be more than a
mere desire to get his money. There is no place in the Kingdom where one
may find good accommodations cheaper, barring a half dozen notable
resorts in the height of the season. Added to this, the beauty of the
country and its romantic and historic interest make a combination of
attractions that would long detain one whose time permitted.

The foregoing observations about the Welsh are applicable in a greater
or less degree to many sections of England and to most of rural
Scotland, save that in the latter country hotel expenses will average

A word on hotels generally may not come amiss from one whose experience
has dealt with several hundreds of them of all classes and degrees, from
the country inn to the pretentious resort hotel. It was our practice to
seek out the best in every case, since we hardly enjoyed hotel life even
under the most favorable conditions; but it was largely saved from
monotony by the traditions which have gathered about almost every
ancient inn in the Kingdom. One would miss much if he did not visit the
old inns such as the Feathers in Ludlow, the Lygon Arms in Broadway, the
Great White Horse in Ipswich, the King's Head in Coventry--but I could
fill pages with names alone; I would as soon think of missing a historic
castle or a cathedral as some of the inns. It is this sentiment that has
led me to give the rather extended individual mention accorded in some

As a whole, the British hotels are comfortable and well conducted.
Outside of London one will find the menus rather restricted and usually
quite heavy and substantial from an American point of view. Special
dishes are not easily obtained in the country inns and request for them
is not at all enthusiastically received. Eggs and bacon--with the latter
very nearly answering the specification of ham in America--with fish,
usually sole or plaice, and tea or rather bad coffee, is the standard
breakfast. Fruit cannot usually be had even in season without
prearrangement the evening before, and then only at exorbitant prices.
Strawberries, for instance--there are none finer than the English in
season--may be selling for sixpence a quart, but you will pay half a
crown extra for a lesser quantity served with your breakfast. An
assortment of cold meats, usually displayed on the sideboard, forms the
basis for luncheon and the very wise native will go to the sideboard and
select his own portions. There will sometimes be a hot dish of meat;
cabbage and potatoes are the standard vegetables, the latter cooked
without seasoning and generally poor. A lettuce salad and cheese, with
stewed fruit or a tart, as they style a pastry something similar to an
American pie, will complete the meal--at least for one who does not care
for liquid refreshments, which may be had in great variety. Dinner in
the smaller inns is usually served on the table d'hote plan. A very poor
soup, a bit of stale fish--inexcusable in a country surrounded by the
sea; an entree, usually a highly seasoned hotch-potch, or chicken and
bacon--often a vile combination--followed by some heavy, indigestible
"sweet," made the standard evening meal. We finally rebelled against
this and had many a lively tilt with the manageress in our efforts to
get a plain meal of eggs, tea, bread and butter and perhaps a chop. In
some of the resort hotels our demands caused positive consternation and
in more than one case had to be taken up with the proprietor himself.
The difficulty was chiefly due to the disarrangement of the regime; the
table d'hote meal was ready, though often stale and cold, and one waiter
by following the fixed routine could serve a dozen people, while our
simple wants usually disarranged the whole program, both in kitchen and
dining room. It was rare indeed that a mutton chop could be had in the
hotel; some one must be sent to the meat shop for it, and any such
departure from the fixed order of things jarred the nerves of the whole
establishment. It is only fair to state, however, that at some of the
fine inns I have especially mentioned there were notable exceptions to
these generalizations.

The rooms in the country hotel do not average very comfortable; the
furniture is scant; they are poorly lighted--if not with candles, a
single dim electric bulb or gas light serves the purpose; feather beds,
with the odors that these give out in a damp climate, were not uncommon,
though flat rebellion against them would often bring out the fact that
there were others in the house. Bathing facilities were usually poor, a
dirty bathroom or two serving the entire house. Not in a single case did
we find running water in the rooms. But with all its drawbacks, the
British provincial hotel will probably average as good as may be found
in any country, and in motoring one has the option of going on to the
next town if conditions seem too bad to be endured. Rates--to
tourists--in the better class hotels are not low; yet I would not call
them exorbitant as a rule. Two shillings for breakfast, three for
luncheon and four to six for dinner may be given as the average, while
the charge for rooms can hardly be generalized. Five or six dollars per
day per person should cover the hotel expense, including tips.

And, speaking of tips, these aggregate no inconsiderable item; a smaller
individual amount will give satisfaction than in America, but the number
of beneficiaries is so much greater that the total cost is more. Every
servant who does anything for you or who ought to do anything, must have
a fee--porter, boots, chambermaid, waiter, head waiter, stable man,
garage attendant, the man who cleans your car or brings you oil or
petrol; in fact, everyone in the hotel except the proprietor or
manageress expects from sixpence to half a crown for the day, as the
case may be, and it does not pay to withhold it. One subjected to such
exactions cannot but view with great concern the increase of the
practice of tipping in America; should it ever become so prevalent here
at the much higher rate that the American servant requires, traveling
would be prohibitive except for millionaires.

 [Illustration: FRANCE AND GERMANY
  Outline map showing Author's route on Continent.]



Abbeville, 7-8, 133.

Abbotsford, 173-177.

Aberdeen, 188-190.

Achaius, King, 217.

Ailsa Craig, 239.

Alfred, King, 348-349.

Alloway, 231-236, 250.

Alsace, 59-60.

Amboise, 32, 33, 35-36.

Amiens, 129-133.

Andover, 299.

Angel Inn, Grantham, 149-150.

Angers, 27-28.

Austen, Jane, 308.

Autun, 52-53.

Avranches, 20-21.

Awe, Loch, 225.

Ayr, 230-231.


Baliol, John, 243-245.

Ballachulish, 217-221, 223.

Ballantrae, 240.

Ballater, 188.

Balmoral Castle, 187-188.

Barnes, William, 302-303.

Barnstaple, 348.

Barrhead, 230.

Bartholdi, Frederic, 60.

Basingstoke, 299.

Bassenthwaite Water, 246, 248-249.

Bath, 350-351.

Bayerischer-Hof, Fussen, 66-67.

Bayeux, 16-17.

Beaugency, 40-41.

Beethoven, Ludwig, 97.

Benderloch Station, 221, 223.

Bennane Head, 240.

Ben Nevis, 216, 217, 223.

Berck-sur-Mer, 6-7.

Berry Pomeroy Castle, 311-319.

Bettyhill, 204-205.

Beauly, 209.

Bideford, 347-348.

Bingen, 89-91.

Bishop Auckland, 153-154.

Blairgowrie, 185.

Blandford, 300.

Blois, 32, 36-40.

Bonar Bridge, 194, 208.

Bonn, 97.

Bonsecours, 13-14.

Bootle, 252, 257.

Boppard, 93.

Bornhofen, 93.

Boroughbridge, 147.

Boulogne, 4-6, 133, 134-135.

Bowness, 259.

Braemar, 182, 186-187.

Bridport, 308.

Broughton, 252, 257-258.

Burns, Robert 181, 230-237.

Burntisland, 182.

Byrness, 156.

Byron, Lord, 96, 188.


Caedmon, 162, 164, 168.

Caen, 15-16.

Caithness, 192-193.

Calder Abbey, 253-254.

Caledonian Canal, 210-212.

Camelford, 346-347.

Carlisle, 246.

Carlton Hotel, Frankfort, 86.

Casino, The, Boulogne, 135.

Castle Douglas, 241, 242.

Castle Hotel, Conway, 278, 280-281.

Catcleugh, 156.

Catherine de Medici, 34, 35-36, 38.

Catherine of Beraine, Lady, 274.

Cawdor Castle, 213.

Charles I., 149, 267-268, 270, 295-296.

Charles Edward, Prince, 152, 178-179, 212, 221-222.

Chateaubriant, 26.

Chaumont, 32.

Chenonceaux, 32-34.

Chester, 262-263.

Chinon, 32, 52.

Coblenz, 89, 94-96.

Cockermouth, 248-251.

Colmar, 60.

Cologne, 96-99, 125.

Constance, Lake, 62-64.

Continental Hotel, Munich, 77, 80-81.

Conway, 263-264, 278-297.

Cook, Capt., 160, 170-171.

Cook & Sons, Thos., 69-70, 210.

Corbridge, 147, 155.

Cosne, 46.

Coutances, 20.

Crinan Canal, 227.

Cromarty Firth, 194.

Cromwell, Oliver, 306.

Culloden Moor, 212, 213, 217, 222.

Culzean Castle, 237.

Cupar, 184.


Dalton, 259.

Darlington, 153.

Darmstadt, 84.

Darnick, 177-178.

Deganwy, 287.

Denbigh, 264-278.

Derwentwater, 247, 248.

Deutsches Haus, Friedrichshafen, 63-64.

Devorgilla, Countess, 243-245.

Diane of Poitiers, 33-34.

Dickens, Charles, 301.

Dijon, 48-53.

Dingwall, 194.

Dobson, H. J., 235-236, 282.

Donaueschingen, 61.

Doncaster, 147, 151.

Dorchester, 299, 300-307, 350.

Dornoch Firth, 194-195.

Drachenfels, 96.

Duarte, 225.

Dudley, Robert, 269-270, 277.

Dumfries, 241, 242, 245.

Dunderawe Castle, 228.

Dunolly, 224, 225.

Dunrobin Castle, 195, 197.

Dunure Castle, 237.

Dunstaffnage, 225.


Edinburgh, 178-182.

Edward I., 269, 277, 293.

Edward IV., 330, 332.

Edward VII., 186, 301.

Egremont Castle, 252-253.

Ehrenbreitstein, 95-96.

Ehrenfels, 91.

Elizabeth, Queen, 251, 269, 283.

Elreton, Henry de, 293.

Endicott, John, 302.

English Channel, 2, 4, 133, 135.

Escomb, 154.

Eyre-Todd, George, 211, 232.

Exeter, 308, 309.


Falkenburg Castle, 92.

Feochan, Loch, 225-226.

Folkestone, 3, 135.

Fort Augustus, 212, 216.

Fort William, 212, 216-218, 222.

Fowey, 321, 328-333.

Francis I., 35, 37.

Francis II., 33, 35, 44.

Frankfort, 84, 86-88.

Freiburg, 60-61, 69.

Friedrichshafen, 63-64.

Furness Abbey, 258.

Fussen, 66-68.

Fyne, Loch, 227-228.


Gairlochy, 222.

Gatehouse, 242.

George, I., 156.

George V., 343.

Gerardmer, 57.

Gibson, R. A., John, 289.

Gilphead, Loch, 227.

Girvan, 239.

Glasgow, 229-230.

Glastonbury, 350.

Glen Affrick, 209.

Glencoe, 221.

Glengarry, 212.

Glenluce, 241-242.

Goethe, 87, 103.

Golspie, 195-198.

Grantham, 149-151.

Granton, 182.

Grand Hotel de France et de Londres, Avranches, 20-21.

Granville, 20.

Gray, 53.

Great Glen, The, 193, 210-223.

Great Orme's Head, 287.

Great Torrington, 347.

Guisborough, 153.

Guise, 128.

Guise, Duke of, 38-39.

Gutenberg, Johann, 88-89.


Hardy, Thos., 303-305, 307.

Hatfield, 147-148.

Hawthorne, Nathaniel, 356.

Heidelberg, 84-85.

Helston, 334.

Hemans, Felicia, 272.

Henderson, T. F., 205.

Henley, W. E., 181.

Henry II., England, 12.

Henry III., France, 38-39.

Henry, VIII., England, 162, 260.

Holsworthy, 347.

Honfleur, 15.

Hotel de France, Nevers, 46-47.

Hotel de France et d'Angleterre, St. Quentin, 128-129.

Hotel de la Croix d'Or, Sedan, 127.

Hotel de Univers, St. Lo, 17, 19.

Hotel de Ville, Orleans, 43-44.


Inverary, 228.

Invercauld Arms, Braemar, 186.

Invergarry, 222.

Inverlochy, 212, 216-217.

Inverness, 193, 212-213.

Iona, 225.

Irvine, 230-231.

Isle of Athelney, 348.

Ivy Bridge, 319.


James II., England, 349.

James IV., Scotland, 242.

Jeanne d'Arc, 10, 12-13, 41-44.

Jedburgh, 147.

Jeffreys, Judge, 303, 306-307, 350.

John, King, 150.

John O'Groats, 147, 199-202, 298, 336.

Johnson, Dr. Samuel, 264, 272.

Jones, John Paul, 251.


Karlsruhe, 84-85.

Kendal, 259-261.

Kennedy Castle, 241.

Keswick, 246-248.

Kilchimien, 216.

Kilchurn, 225.

Kilmartin, 227.

Kilninver, 226.

King's Arms, Dorchester, 300-301.

Kingsley, Chas., 348.

Kintyre, 236.

Kirkcaldy, 182.

Kirkoswald, 237.

Klopp Castle, 90.

Knox, John, 179, 184.


Lacy, Henry de, 266, 268.

Lairg, 208.

Lake District, 246-261.

Lancaster, 262.

Land's End, 263, 298, 336-341.

Lansallos Church, 327.

Largo, 182-184.

Larne, 241.

LaSalle, 12.

Launceston, 346-347.

Leven, Loch, 219.

Lindau, 64.

Linnhe, Loch, 216, 219.

Linskill, Mary, 167-170.

Lion d'Or, Neufchatel, 9.

Liskeard, 328.

Lochinch, 241.

Lochnagar, 188.

Lochy, Loch, 216.

Loire River, 29, 40.

Lomond, Loch, 228-229.

London, 3, 352, 354.

Longwy, 125.

Looes, 322.

Lorelei, The, 92.

Lostwithiel, 328-329.

Loyal, Loch, 207-208.

Ludwigshaven, 62.

Luxemburg, 99, 101-103, 125.

Lyme Regis, 308-309.


Macbrayne Steamship Co., David, 212, 218.

MacWhirter, R. A., John, 65, 209.

McCaig's Folly, Oban, 224-225.

Manchester Ship Canal, 263.

Marlborough, 352-353.

Marxburg, 94.

Mary Stuart, 33, 35, 44, 179, 250-251.

Maxwell-Scott, Hon. Mrs., 176.

Maxwelton, 242.

Mayence, 88-89.

Melfort, Loch, 225, 227.

Melfort, Pass of, 227.

Melrose, 147, 173-174.

Melvich, 204.

Mezieres, 127.

Millais, Sir John, 215.

Millom, 257.

Monmouth, Duke of, 306, 307, 349.

Montgomery, James, 230.

Montmedy, 127.

Montreuil, 5-6, 134.

Mont St. Michel, 20-24.

Moran, Thos., 279-281, 337.

Moselle River, 94, 96, 99, 101.

Mosely, Alfred, 371.

Mouse Tower, The, 91-92.

Munich, 77-81.

Mytton, Gen., 267-268, 270, 278.


Ness, Loch, 214-216.

Neufchatel, 8-9.

Neustadt, 61.

Nevers, 45-47.

New Abbey, 242-245.

Newburgh, 184.

Newby Bridge, 259.

Newton Abbot, 309.

Newton, Sir Isaac, 151.

Newton-Stewart, 242.


Oban, 210, 214, 223-225.

Oberammergau, 61, 68-77.

Oberwesel, 93.

Oich, Loch, 216.

Orleans, 40-45.

Oswy, King, 161.

Oxford, 298.


Palace Hotel, Aberdeen, 188-190.

Peel Tower, Darnick, 177-179.

Penzance, 334-335, 341, 347.

Perth, 182, 184-185.

Peter the Hermit, 132.

Philipson, Major Robert, 260-261.

Pickering, 153.

Pius VII., Pope, 46.

Plas Mawr, 281-285.

Plymouth, 318-319, 321, 329.

Polperro, 320-327.

Pommard, 52.

Pont Audemer, 15.

Port Patrick, 237, 241.

Preston, 262.

Probus, 333.

Prun, 100.

Puddletown, 300.


Quiller-Couch, Sir Arthur, 332.


Ravenglass, 254-257.

Rawnsley, Canon, 255.

Reading, 352, 354.

Remiremont, 55-57.

Rennes, 25-26.

Rheinfels, 94.

Rhine River, 59-60, 85, 89-96, 99-100.

Rheinstein Castle, 91.

Rhoscomyl, Owen, 296.

Rhuddlan, 276-278.

Richard I., 11-12.

Richard II., 294.

Richard III., 150.

Robin Hood, 160.

Rolandseck, 96-97.

Rouen, 8-15, 42.

Royal Automobile Club, 1, 3, 58, 68, 96, 147, 192, 210.

Royal Cambrian Academy, 281.

Rudruth, 334.

Ruskin, John, 131, 133.

Ryan, Loch, 240.


St. Asaph, 270, 273, 276-277.

St. Austell, 333.

St. Benedict's Abbey, 216.

St. Columba, 215-216.

St. Columb Major, 346.

St. Goar, 93-94.

St. Hilda's Abbey, Whitby, 161-164.

St. Ives, 341.

St. Lo, 17-20.

St. Malo, 20-24.

St. Mary's Church, Conway, 289.

St. Mary's Church, Whitby, 157, 159, 162, 164-165, 167.

St. Michael's Mount, 22, 334.

St. Michel, Mont, 20-24.

St. Peter's Church, Dorchester, 302-303.

St. Quentin, 128-129.

St. Wulfram's Church, Grantham, 149-150.

Salisbury, 299-300.

Salisbury, Sir Wm., 267-268.

Schonburg, 93.

Schongau, 68.

Scott, Sir Walter, 161, 162, 173-179, 185, 238, 253, 261, 296-297.

Sedan, 127-128.

Sedgemoor, 348-349.

Sennan, 341.

Shin, Loch, 208.

Ship Inn, Fowey, 332-333.

Skiddaw, 246.

Sonneck Castle, 92.

Southey, Robt., 247.

Staffa, 225.

Staines, 298, 299.

Stanley, Henry M., 273-274.

Stilton, 148.

Stockton, 153.

Stolzenfels Castle, 94.

Stranraer, 240-241.

Strathy, 204.

Stuttgart, 81, 83-84.

Sutherland, 191, 193.

Sutherland Arms, Golspie, 196-197.

Sweetheart Abbey, 242-245.


Tain, 194.

Tamnay-Chatillon, 47-48, 51.

Taunton, 348, 350.

Thorwaldsen, Albert Bertel, 89.

Thurso, 203.

Tongue, 203-207.

Tongue Inn, 206-207.

Totnes, 309-311, 318.

Tours, 30-32, 35.

Tow-Law, 154.

Tremeirchion, 272.

Treves, 96, 99, 101.

Trouville-sur-Mer, 15.

Truro, 334, 345-346.

Turnberry Castle, 237-239.

Tuttlingen, 61-62.

Tyne River, 155.


Ulm, 81-83.

Ulverston, 259.

Urquhart Castle, 215.


Vaile, P. A., 368.

Vesoul, 53.

Victoria, Queen, 186.

Vinci, da, Leonardo, 36.


Warrington, 262-263.

Wells, 350.

Wesley, John, 338.

Whitby, 151, 152-153, 157-172.

Whitchurch, 272.

Whitehaven, 251.

White, Rev. John, 302.

Wick, 198-199.

Wigan, 262.

Wilton-le-Wear, 147.

Windermere, 259, 261.

William I., England, 15, 17.

William I., Germany, 95.

William III., England, 310.

Windsor Castle, 354.

Woolsthorpe Manor, 151.

Wordsworth, Wm., 229, 249-250, 252-253, 257, 260, 290.


York, 151-152.


Zeppelin, Count, 64.


 [Illustration: SCOTLAND
  Outline map showing Author's route--in red--as covered in present volume.
  Route in black refers to previous book--"In Unfamiliar England."]
 [Illustration: ENGLAND AND WALES]


Green Lines Show Approximate Routes Covered in This Book; Light-Faced Red
  and Black Lines, Routes Covered by Author's Previous Books, "British
   Highways and Byways from a Motor Car" and "In Unfamiliar England"


                       Aberystwith            17 E
                       Alcester               18 M
                       Alnwick                 3 M
                       Ambleside               7 J
                       Arundel                25 Q
                       Askrigg                 8 L
                       Avebury                21 M


                       Bakewell               13 M
                       Bamborough              2 M
                       Banbury                19 O
                       Bangor                 13 G
                       Barmouth               16 H
                       Barnard Castle          7 M
                       Barnsley               12 N
                       Barnstaple             23 G
                       Bath                   22 K
                       Battle Abbey           24 T
                       Bawtry                 12 P
                       Beaulieu               24 O
                       Beddgelert             14 G
                       Bedford                18 R
                       Belvoir Castle         15 P
                       Berkeley               20 L
                       Berwick                 1 M
                       Bettws-y-Coed          14 H
                       Beverly                10 Q
                       Bexhill                25 T
                       Bideford               24 F
                       Billingshurst          24 R
                       Birtsmorton            18 L
                       Bishop's Castle        17 J
                       Bodiam                 23 T
                       Bolton Abbey           10 L
                       Bolton Castle           8 L
                       Boston                 14 R
                       Bottisford             14 Q
                       Bournemouth            24 M
                       Bowes                   7 L
                       Bowness                 8 J
                       Bradford-on-Avon       23 L
                       Brampton                5 K
                       Brecon                 19 I
                       Bridgnorth             16 K
                       Bridlington             9 R
                       Brighton               24 S
                       Brington               17 P
                       Bristol                21 K
                       Brixham                27 H
                       Broadway               19 M
                       Brough                  7 L
                       Broxborne              19 S
                       Buckingham             19 O
                       Buildwas               16 L
                       Builth                 18 H
                       Burnham Thorpe         14 U
                       Bury St. Edmunds       18 U
                       Buxton                 13 M
                       Bylands Abbey           8 N


                       Caerleon               20 K
                       Caerphilly             21 H
                       Caister Castle         15 X
                       Calder Abbey            7 I
                       Cambridge              18 S
                       Camelford              25 E
                       Canterbury             22 V
                       Cardiff                22 I
                       Cardigan               18 E
                       Carlisle                5 J
                       Carmarthen             19 F
                       Carnarvon              13 G
                       Cerne Abbas            24 K
                       Cerrig-y-Druidion      14 I
                       Chagford               25 G
                       Chalfont St. Giles     21 P
                       Chawton                23 P
                       Cheddar                23 K
                       Chelmsford             20 T
                       Cheltenham             19 M
                       Chepstow               21 I
                       Chester                13 I
                       Chesterfield           13 N
                       Chichester             24 Q
                       Chigwell               20 T
                       Chippenham             21 M
                       Chipping Ongar         20 T
                       Chirk                  15 J
                       Chorley Wood           20 Q
                       Clovelly               24 F
                       Cockermouth             6 I
                       Colchester             19 T
                       Coniston                8 I
                       Conway                 13 H
                       Corfe                  26 M
                       Coventry               17 M
                       Cowbridge              22 H
                       Cowes                  25 O
                       Coxwold                 8 O
                       Cromer                 14 W
                       Crowland               16 R


                       Darfield               11 O
                       Darlington              7 N
                       Dartmouth              27 H
                       Denbigh                13 I
                       Derby                  14 M
                       Dereham                16 U
                       Devizes                22 M
                       Dinas Mawddwy          16 H
                       Dolgelly               15 G
                       Doncaster              11 P
                       Dorchester             25 L
                       Dover                  23 W
                       Downe                  22 S
                       Drayton                14 L
                       Dukeries               13 N
                       Dunster                23 H
                       Durham                  6 M


                       Eastbourne             25 T
                       East Looe              26 F
                       Edgeware               20 P
                       Egremont                7 I
                       Ely                    17 S
                       Epsom                  22 R
                       Eversley               22 P
                       Evesham                18 M
                       Exeter                 25 G


                       Farnham                23 Q
                       Fishguard              19 D
                       Folkestone             24 V
                       Fotheringhay           16 R
                       Fountains Abbey         9 M
                       Fowey                  27 E
                       Freshwater             26 M
                       Furness Abbey           9 I


                       Gad's Hill             22 S
                       Glastonbury            23 K
                       Glossop                12 M
                       Gloucester             20 L
                       Grantham               15 Q
                       Grasmere                7 I
                       Greenstead Church      20 S
                       Guildford              22 R
                       Guisborough             7 O


                       Hampton Court          22 R
                       Harborough             16 Q
                       Harlech                15 G
                       Harrogate              10 M
                       Harrow                 21 Q
                       Haselmere              23 Q
                       Hastings               24 U
                       Haverfordwest          20 D
                       Haverhill              19 T
                       Haworth                10 L
                       Hay                    19 I
                       Helmsley                8 P
                       Hereford               19 K
                       Hexham                  4 M
                       Holyhead               12 D
                       Honiton                24 H
                       Howard Castle           9 P
                       Hucknall               14 M
                       Huntingdon             14 Q
                       Hythe                  24 V


                       Ilfracombe             22 G
                       Ilkley                 10 M
                       Ipswich                18 V


                       Jarrow                  5 N
                       Jordans                21 P


                       Kendal                  8 K
                       Kenilworth             17 M
                       Keston                 22 R
                       Keswick                 6 J
                       Kettlewell              9 L
                       King's Lynn            15 T
                       Kirby Hall             17 Q
                       Knaresborough          10 O
                       Knutsford              13 L


                       Lacock                 22 L
                       Land's End             28 A
                       Lamberhurst            23 S
                       Lancaster               9 K
                       Lanercost Priory        5 L
                       Launceston             26 E
                       Leamington             18 O
                       Ledbury                19 K
                       Leeds                  10 N
                       Leicester              16 P
                       Lewes                  24 R
                       Leyburn                 8 M
                       Llangollen             15 J
                       Llandaff               22 H
                       Llandovery             19 G
                       Lincoln                13 Q
                       Lichfield              16 L
                       Liverpool              12 J
                       London                 21 R
                       Lostwithiel            26 E
                       Ludlow                 17 J
                       Lulworth               26 L
                       Lutterworth            17 P
                       Lymington              25 O
                       Lyme Regis             25 J
                       Lyndhurst              24 M


                       Maidstone              22 U
                       Malmsbury              21 K
                       Malvern                18 K
                       Manchester             12 L
                       Mansfield              13 O
                       Marazion               28 B
                       Margate                21 W
                       Marlborough            21 N
                       Marney                 19 V
                       Midhurst               24 O
                       Middleham               9 L
                       Mildenhall             17 T
                       Monmouth               20 J
                       Monken Hadley          20 R
                       Montgomery             16 J
                       Moreton Hampstead      25 G
                       Much Wenlock           17 L
                       Mundesley              14 X


                       Neath                  21 H
                       Nether Stowey          23 I
                       Netley                 24 O
                       Newark                 14 P
                       Newcastle               5 M
                       Newcastle-under-Lyme   14 K
                       Newlyn                 28 A
                       Newmarket              17 U
                       Newport                21 V
                       Newport                20 O
                       Newstead Abbey         14 O
                       Newtown                17 I
                       Northampton            18 P
                       Nottingham             14 N
                       Norwich                16 W


                       Olney                  19 Q
                       Oswestry               15 I
                       Oundle                 17 R
                       Oxford                 20 N


                       Penn's Chapel           4 R
                       Penrith                 6 K
                       Penshurst              23 T
                       Penzance               28 B
                       Peterborough           16 R
                       Pevensey               24 S
                       Plymouth               27 F
                       Polperro               27 E
                       Pontefract             11 O
                       Prince Town            26 G


                       Raby Castle             7 M
                       Raglan                 20 I
                       Ravenglass              7 I
                       Reading                22 O
                       Reculver               22 V
                       Retford                13 P
                       Rhuddlan               13 H
                       Richmond                8 M
                       Rievaulx Abbey          9 M
                       Ripon                   9 M
                       Ripple                 19 L
                       Rochester              22 T
                       Romsey                 23 M
                       Ross                   19 K
                       Rowton Moor            13 K
                       Ryde                   25 P
                       Rye                    24 U


                       Saint Asaph            13 H
                       St. Albans             20 R
                       St. David's            19 B
                       St. Ives               27 B
                       St. Ives               17 S
                       Salisbury              23 L
                       Sandringham Palace     15 U
                       Scarborough             8 R
                       Scrooby                12 O
                       Sedgemoor              23 J
                       Selborne               23 O
                       Settle                  9 L
                       Seven Oaks             22 T
                       Sheffield              12 N
                       Sherborne              24 L
                       Shottermill            24 P
                       Shrewsbury             16 J
                       Skipton                10 L
                       Somersby               13 R
                       Southampton            24 M
                       Southwell              14 O
                       Stilton                17 R
                       Stockton                6 O
                       Stoke Poges            21 Q
                       Stokesay Manor         17 K
                       Stratford-on-Avon      18 N
                       Sulgrave               16 P
                       Swansea                20 G


                       Tadcaster              10 O
                       Tamworth               16 N
                       Taunton                23 J
                       Tavistock              26 F
                       Tewkesbury             19 M
                       Thetford               17 U
                       Tintagel               25 D
                       Tintern                20 J
                       Tong                   16 L
                       Torquay                26 H
                       Totnes                 26 H
                       Truro                  27 C
                       Tunbridge Wells        23 T


                       Usk                    20 I
                       Uttoxeter              15 M
                       Uxbridge               21 Q


                       Ventnor                26 P


                       Wakefield              11 N
                       Walsingham             15 V
                       Waltham                20 S
                       Wantage                21 N
                       Wareham                25 L
                       Warrington             11 K
                       Warwick                18 M
                       Wellington             24 I
                       Wells                  23 J
                       Wells-next-the-Sea     14 V
                       Westerham              24 R
                       West Looe              27 E
                       Weston-Super-Mare      22 J
                       Whitby                  7 P
                       Whittington            14 J
                       Wimborne               24 L
                       Winchelsea             24 T
                       Winchester             23 O
                       Windermere              8 J
                       Windsor                21 P
                       Wokingham              22 P
                       Woodstock              20 N
                       Worcester              18 L
                       Worthing               25 R
                       Wroxeter               16 K
                       Wymondham              17 V


                       Yarmouth               16 X
                       Yarmouth               25 N
                       Yeovil                 24 K
                       York                   10 O


                        Books by Thos. D. Murphy


                 Three Wonderlands of the American West

                        (Second Revised Edition)

Splendidly illustrated with sixteen reproductions in colors from
original paintings by Thos. Moran, N. A. and thirty-two duogravures from
photographs, also three maps. 180 pages, tall 8vo. decorated cloth.
Price (boxed) $3.00 net. Carriage 30 cents extra.

  In this volume Mr. Murphy turns to our own country and both text and
  pictures tell a story that may well engage the attention of any one
  interested in the beauty and grandeur of natural scenery. The book
  will come as a revelation to many who have had a vague notion that
  there may possibly be something worth seeing in America--after one
  has "done" Europe. The author himself admits of such skepticism
  before he made the tour described in the book. He says, "I found
  myself wondering if there could be such an enchanted land as Mr.
  Moran portrays--such a land of weird mountains, crystal cataracts
  and emerald rivers all glowing with a riot of coloring that seem
  more like an iridescent dream than a sober reality."

  A tour through the three wonderlands gives the answer--neither pen
  nor picture has ever told half the story. The sixteen illustrations
  from original paintings by Thomas Moran come nearer, perhaps, than
  anything excepting a personal visit in presenting to the eyes the
  true grandeur of the wonderlands described; and these are
  supplemented by thirty-two splendid photographs, reproduced in
  duogravure and printed in a rich shade of brown. These features make
  the book one of the most notable ever coming from the American
  press, and it will serve the purpose of a guide to intending
  visitors, as well as a beautiful and appropriate souvenir for those
  who have visited one or all of the wonderlands so graphically

                   British Highways and Byways From a
                               Motor Car

                            (Third Edition)

With sixteen illustrations in color from original paintings by noted
artists, and thirty-two duogravures from English photographs, also
descriptive maps of England and Scotland. 320 pages 8vo, decorated
cloth, gilt top. Price (boxed) $3.00.

  An interesting record of a summer motor tour in Great Britain by an
  American who took his car with him and drove over some thousands of
  miles of British roads. The tour includes the cities, towns and
  villages, the solitary ruins, the literary shrines, every cathedral
  in the Island and many of the quaintest and most fascinating
  out-of-the-way places not on the usual route of travel. A book of
  value to anyone contemplating a tour of Britain or interested in the
  country and its people.

                 In Unfamiliar England With a Motor Car

                            (Second Edition)

A new book on England, with incursions into Ireland and Scotland.
Splendidly illustrated with sixteen reproductions in color from original
paintings by noted artists, including Moran, Leader, Bowman, Elias,
Sherrin and others, and forty-eight duogravures from English
photographs, illustrating many of the quaint places visited by the
author. Also indexed map of England and Wales and map showing routes in
Ireland and Scotland.

  A chronicle of the extensive wanderings by motor car of an American
  in rural England and a record of his discoveries in the
  out-of-the-way corners of the Island; also of delightful incursions
  into Scotland and Ireland. It is a story redolent with the summer
  beauty of the loveliest countryside in the world, and is replete
  with the tales of lonely ruins, quaint old churches, historic manor
  houses and palaces; it takes one through the leafy byways, into the
  retired country villages, and to many unfrequented nooks on the
  seashore. Particularly has the writer sought out the historic
  shrines in England of especial interest to Americans themselves, and
  his book is quite a revelation in this respect. The book has much of
  interest seldom noted in the literature of travel and will please
  alike the actual traveler or the reader who does his traveling in an
  easy chair by his own fireside.

Of Mr. Murphy's motor travel books dealing with Great Britain, the Royal
Automobile Club Journal speaks the following commendatory words:

                     England Through American Eyes

  A member of the Automobile Club of America, who is also an
  Individual Associate of the Royal Automobile Club, Mr. Thomas D.
  Murphy, has for several years past spent two or three months in
  touring in his car throughout the United Kingdom, and the result has
  been the publication in America of two books, one entitled, 'British
  Highways and Byways from a Motor Car,' and the other, 'In Unfamiliar

  "In the former Mr. Murphy deals, in a most readable and attractive
  style, with many of the better known places of interest in our
  country; but in his book entitled 'In Unfamiliar England,' the
  author describes many out-of-the-way places which are totally
  unknown to the average English motorist, and even to people who
  pride themselves upon a knowledge of their own country. A short time
  ago the Touring Department received an inquiry from a member of the
  Club concerning an old building in the Eastern Counties; wished to
  know the exact position of the place, also whether it was open to
  the public. A diligent search was made through all the usual books
  of reference, and no trace of it could be discovered. As a last
  resource Mr. Murphy's book was consulted, and not only was the exact
  information required obtained, but in addition an excellent
  illustration of the building was found. It seems curious that the
  Touring Department should have to consult a book written by an
  American in order to obtain information about an interesting spot in
  this country.

  "The writing of a motoring guide book is a very difficult matter,
  and the majority are either crammed with information and very
  unreadable, or else they are written in a very personal manner which
  becomes rather irritating to the person who wishes to obtain
  information from them. It is an exceedingly difficult matter to
  combine road information, historical facts, and interesting legends,
  in such a manner that the dry sections are not so numerous as to
  make the book wearisome and the lighter sections not so drawn out as
  to make the reading matter trivial. We should imagine that it is
  much easier to write an ordinary novel than a good guide-book of the
  readable description. Mr. Murphy is one of the few people who can
  manage this difficult undertaking successfully."

                      SENT POSTPAID ON RECEIPT OF
                                PRICE BY

                          L. C. PAGE & COMPANY

End of Project Gutenberg's On Old-World Highways, by Thomas Dowler Murphy


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