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Chapter 13
A More Rational Day Than The Last
The Baron of Bradwardine, mounted on an active and well-managed horse, and seated on
a demi-pique saddle, with deep housings to agree with his livery, was no bad
representative of the old school. His light-coloured embroidered coat, and superbly
barred waistcoat, his brigadier wig, surmounted by a small gold-laced cocked-hat,
completed his personal costume; but he was attended by two well-mounted servants on
horseback, armed with holster pistols.
In this guise he ambled forth over hill and valley, the admiration of every farmyard which
they passed in their progress, till, 'low down in a grassy vale,' they found Davie Gellatley
leading two very tall deer greyhounds, and presiding over half a dozen curs, and about as
many bare-legged and bare-headed boys, who, to procure the chosen distinction of
attending on the chase, had not failed to tickle his ears with the dulcet appellation of
Maister Gellatley, though probably all and each had booted him on former occasions in
the character of daft Davie. But this is no uncommon strain of flattery to persons in
office, nor altogether confined to the bare-legged villagers of Tully-Veolan: it was in
fashion Sixty Years since, is now, and will be six hundred years hence, if this admirable
compound of folly and knavery, called the world, shall be then in existence.
These GILLIE-WET-FOOTS, [A bare-footed Highland lad is called a gillie-wet-foot.
Gillie, in general, means servant or attendant.] as they were called, were destined to beat
the bushes, which they performed with so much success, that, after half an hour's search,
a roe was started, coursed, and killed; the Baron following on his white horse, like Earl
Percy of yore, and magnanimously flaying and embowelling the slain animal (which, he
observed, was called by the French chasseurs FAIRE LA CUREE) with his own baronial
COUTEAU DE CHASSE. After this ceremony he conducted his guest homeward by a
pleasant and circuitous route, commanding an extensive prospect of different villages and
houses, to each of which Mr. Bradwardine attached some anecdote of history or
genealogy, told in language whimsical from prejudice and pedantry, but often respectable
for the good sense and honourable feelings which his narrative displayed, and almost
always curious, if not valuable, for the information they contained.
The truth is, the ride seemed agreeable to both gentlemen, because they found amusement
in each other's conversation, although their characters and habits of thinking were in
many respects totally opposite. Edward, we have informed the reader, was warm in his
feelings, wild and romantic in his ideas and in his taste of reading, with a strong
disposition towards poetry. Mr. Bradwardine was the reverse of all this, and piqued
himself upon stalking through life with the same upright, starched, stoical gravity which
distinguished his evening promenade upon the terrace of Tully-Veolan, where for hours
together--the very model old Hardyknute--