Page:Footsteps of Dr. Johnson.djvu/325

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is to be dropped next year." 1 At Tarbet the tourist who is oppressed with the size of the hotel and the army of waiters, and who sees the pier as I saw it crowned with an automatic sweet- meat machine, may well wish that the steam-boat had never been found to answer. The scene is hopelessly vulgarised. It is fast sinking into the paradise of cockneys. I asked for that variety of bread which I remember to have seen served up there thirty-seven years ago. I was scornfully told that in those days the Scotch had not known how to bake, but that now they could make a large loaf as well as anyone. At Inverary I had in vain asked for oat-cakes at my hotel. If Johnson were to make his journey in these present times, and were confined to the big tourists' hotels, he would certainly no longer say that an epicure, wherever he had supped, would wish to breakfast in Scotland.

From Tarbet he rode along the shores of Loch Lomond to Rosedew, 2 the house of Sir James Colquhoun. "It was a place," says the historian

of Dumbartonshire, "rich .' .'3IHMBMW f -^*^ l ^ S

in historic associations, but - about 1770 it was super- seded by a new mansion, to INCH GALIi RAnH. which large additions have

since been made."' Here Boswell passed in review fohnson's courteous behaviour at Inverary, and said, " You were quite a fine gentleman when with the duchess.' He answered in good humour, 'Sir, I look upon myself as a very polite man.'" Next morning "we took," writes Johnson, "a boat to rove upon the lake. It has about thirty islands, of which twenty belong to Sir James. Young Colquhoun' went into the boat with us, but a little agitation of the water frighted him to shore. We passed up and down and landed upon one small island, 3 on which are the ruins of a castle ; and upon another much larger, which serves Sir James for a park, and is remarkable for a large wood of yew trees." Just one hundred years later, on December 18, 1873, that very fate befel one of his descendants which the young Colquhoun dreaded

1 Cockburn's Life of Jeffrey, ed. 1852, ii. 180. was made from the old castle to the centre

' 2 Rossdhu. portion."

3 J. Irving's Book of Dumbartonshire, ii. 242. 4 Johnson spells the name as it was pronounced

See il>. p. 257, where it is stated that it was in Column.

1774 (the year after Johnson's visit), that " a re- "' Inch Galbrailh.


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