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All our attention was fixed on their motions. They drove a post into the ground, and threw the end of a thick rope across to me. This we fixed to a strong beam, and jammed it within the front window, whilst they on the bank made fast the other end of it to the post. A smaller rope was thrown over, This I fastened round the boy's waist, and he was dragged through the water to the bank, supporting himself all the way on the larger rope, that was stretched between the window and the post. The lass lost her hold, and was taken out half drowned; but, thank Providence! we were all saved. By six o'clock in the evening, the water had so fallen, that I made my way in to give pro
vender to the beasts. I then found that the whole Dorback had come over from the west side of the valley, and cut a new course close at the back of the mills. the mill-leads were cut entirely away. A deep ravine was dug out between the houses and the bank-their foundations were undermined in that direction-the machinery destroyed—the gables next the river carried away-and all, even the very ground, so ruined, that it is quite impossible ever to have mills here again,'"
So much for the exploits of the Dorback before he joined the Divie;
and now a few words more of the
Divie before he joins the Findhorn and then a few pages, perhaps more, of the "Bridge-Destroyer," before he joins the Sea.
We grieve to say, that the Divie shewed himself by his conduct to his excellent benefactor and benefactress, Mr and Mrs Cumming Bruce, a monster of ingratitude. The new house of Dunphail, then partly inhabited, and on the eve of being finished at the time of the floods, is one of the happiest efforts of Mr Playfair's classical taste. It stands on a wide lawn, 50 feet from the verge of a bank in front, at the base of which there is an old channel, where there was little water except in floods, and 600 feet from the proper and ordinary course of the river that runs along the steep and wooded bank bounding the valley to the west. The intermediate space was occupied by a broad, green, and partially wood ed island of some acres in extent. On the evening of the 3d, the Divie rose so as to carry away two handsome wooden bridges, and, an embankment at the upper end of the island having given way, a mighty torrent poured towards the house. Mr Cumming Bruce prevailed on his
wife and daughter to leave Dunphail, for the house of a friend. Before doing so, about six in the evening, their anxiety had been extremely excited for the fate of a favourite old pony, then at pasture in the island. Though the house of Dunphail itself was about to be in jeopardy, their feeling hearts felt for old Dobbin.
"As the spot had never been flooded in the memory of man, no one thought of removing him until it was too late. When the embankment gave way, and the patches of green gradually diminished, Dobbin, now in his twenty-seventh year, and in shape something like a 74 gun-ship cut down to a frigate, was seen galloping about in great alarm, as the wreck of roots and trees floated past him, and as the last spot of grass disappeared, he was given up for lost. At this moment he made a desperate effort to cross the stream under the house,-was turned head over heels by its force-rose again, with his head up the river-made boldly up against it, but was again borne down and turned over-every one believed him gone, when, rising once more, and setting down the waste of water, he crossed both torrents, and landed safely on the
Mr Cumming Bruce returned to Dunphail at ten o'clock, and then the
river had undermined the bank the house stood on to within four paces of the foundation of the kitchen tower,
and at eleven, there were only three At two yards then left to count on. o'clock on Tuesday morning, it came 12 feet within the height of the bank, flowing 16 or 18 feet immediately below, where, in general, the old water-course was dry, and the bank tion of the east-tower. Mr Cumming fell within one yard of the foundaBruce then ordered every one to quit the building, and he and his people to witness the fate of the beautiful took their station at some distance, structure. But at four o'clock the river began to subside, and the house
"The ruin and devastation of the place was dreadful. The shrubbery all along
the river side, with its little hill and moss-house, had vanished; two stone and
three wooden bridges were carried off; the beautiful fringe of wood on both sides of the river, with the ground it grew on, were washed to the ocean, together with all those sweet and pastoral projections of the fields, which gave so peaceful and fertile a character to the valley; whilst the once green island, robbed of its groups of
trees, and furrowed by a dozen channels, was covered with large stones, gravel, and torn up roots. The rock in the old channel had been rendered unavailing by the great quantity of gravel brought down, which raised the water over it, so that it acted against the superincumbent mass of mortary gravel that was incapable of resisting it; and thus the house was left in the midst of ruin-like a precious gem, the lustre and effect of which have been destroyed by its setting being injured, and the stone itself left in jeopardy. Dreadful, indeed,' says Mrs Cumming Bruce, feelingly, in a billet written in reply to our enquiries, is the devastation that a few hours have wrought. But we must be thankful that all around us are safe. God's will be done. I daresay we were all too proud of the beauty of our valley, -a beauty which we had not given, and could not take away, but which has vanished in an instant before His sweeping
But we now accompany the worthy Baronet to his own "Relugas," where the Divie acted nearly as wicked a part as at Dunphail. Yet, after all, we believe in our conscience that he could not help it. The man who, when hurried headlong by the force of one single, or twenty united swollen passions, would seek, after spreading irremediable misery far and wide, to palliate his wickedness by the plea that he was no longer a voluntary agent, is suitably answered by an immediate order for his execution. But a river is at the mercy of the marshes of earth and the clouds of heaven, and cannot successfully fight against his Will-o'-wisps and his Stars. We have sometimes seen a stream vainly resisting earth, air, and sky to flood him, and trying to make his escape into bays and nooks -but it would not do-he soon became red, and then raving-mad as well as drumly-and knocking his head against rocks and bridges, rushed howling like a maniac to the sea. On the 3d and 4th of August, the Divie was indeed an object rather of pity than of anger-of poetical wonder and awe, than of moral blame
and condemnation. Sir Thomas, who suffered so sadly from his insanity, compassionately saw his conduct in this light, and for sake of his many virtues, regards him with entire forgiveness.
The chief part of the pleasure grounds of Relugas, occupies a peninsula bounded to the east by the Divie, and to the west by the Findhorn. The house stands on a terrace facing the west, in which direction the lawn stretches towards the Findhorn. The south front looks over the garden, extending up the glen of the Divie, and immediately above a wooded bank, which slopes from the garden into an island called the Mill Island, formed by the water led off from the Divie as a mill-stream. This mill-stream ran peacefully along the base of that superbly wooded bank, where trees of all kinds grew to the height of eighty feet, and produced an impenetrable shade. The side of the Mill Island, next the Divie itself, was defended by a spine of wooded rocks, rising abruptly, and terminating at the upper end in a picturesque castellated mass called the Otter's Rock. the Mill Island itself the greatest care was lavished, the peaceful millstream, the lawny grass glades, the winding walks, and the rocky ridges, having all been adorned with all that was most rare, till it was converted into a spot of delightful retirement. At the back of the house, a picturesque conical wooded hill, called the Doune, rises to the eastward. The Divie coming from the south, after skirting the whole length of the Mill Island, strikes against the southern base of the Doune, and then turns off to the eastward at a right angle, immediately above which point the stables and other offices stand, 40 feet perpendicular, and 158 feet ho rizontal from the water's edge, forming two sides of a square correspond ing to the angle of the river. After leaving the offices, the Divie sweeps for a circuit of half a mile round the south, east, and north bases of the Doune, between lofty and rocky banks, luxuriantly wooded with stately timber, and along the mingled lawns and wooded banks that slope towards its stream from the north front of the house, it pursues its course westward to join the Find
horn, which it does at no great distance from Randolph Bridge-the point, our readers may remember, at which we forsook for a while to return to him by and by," The BridgeDestroyer."
Such was-and is though much beauty for the present has disappeared-Relugas. On the evening of Monday the 3d, being roused while at dinner by alarming accounts of the rivers, the family took their way through the garden to their favourite Mill Island. Sir Thomas, anxious for the safety of a little rustic Doric temple, partly constructed of masonry, and partly of unpeeled spruce trees, that occupied an isolated rock above a broken cascade crossed by picturesque bridges, said to the gardener, 66 John, I fear our temple may be in some danger if this goes on.' -"Ou, sir, it's awa else," (already,) was John's reply-and looking upsays Sir Thomas, "The Divie appalled us!"
"It resembled the outlet to some great inland sea, that had suddenly broken from its bounds. It was already 8 or 10 feet higher than any one had ever seen it, and setting directly down against the sloping terrace under the offices, where we were standing, it washed up over the shrubs and strawberry-beds, with a strange and alarming flux and reflux, dashing out over the ground 10 or 15 yards at a time, -covering the knees of some of the party, standing, as they thought, far beyond its reach, and, retreating with a suction, which it required great exertion to resist. The whirlpool produced by the turn of the river, was in some places elevated 10 or 12 feet above other parts of it. The flood filled the whole space from the rocks of the right bank on the east, to the base of the wooded slope, forming the western boundary of the Mill Island, thus covering the whole of that beautiful spot, except where two rocky wooded knolls, and the Otter's Rock beyond them, appeared from its eastern side. The temple was indeed gone, as well as its bridges, and four other rustic bridges in the island. Already its tall ornamental trees had begun to yield, one by one, to the pressure and undermining of the water, and to the shocks they received from the beams of the Dunphail wooden bridges. The noise was a distinct combination of two kinds of sound; one, an uniformly continued roar, the other like rapidly repeated discharges of many cannons at once. The first of these proceeded from the violence of the water; the
other, which was heard through it, and, ~ as it were, muffled by it, came from the
enormous stones which the stream was hurling over its uneven bed of rock. Above all this was heard the fiendlike shriek of the wind, yelling, as if the demon of desolation had been riding upon its blast. The leaves of the trees were stript off and whirled into the air, and their thick boughs and stems were bending and cracking beneath the tempest, and groan→→ ing like terrified creatures, impatient to escape from the coils of the watery ser pent."
How fared the beautiful and beloved Mill Island? All its magnificent trees were falling like grass beneath the mower's scythe. Numerous as they were, says the Baronet, feelingly, they were all individually well-known friends. Each as it fell gave one enormous plash on the surface-then a plunge-then the root appeared above water for a moment
then again all was submergedthen uprose the stem, disbranched and peeled and finally they either hurled round in the cauldron, or darted like arrows down the river.
How stood the bridge over the Divie to the north of the house? Here, the river, bounding out from the rocky glen behind the Doune, was fearful. The arch is 24 feet high, and its span from rock to rock, 60 feet. The flood filled more than two thirds of its height-yet all night the bridge stood fast-though the wide body of water which covered the Mill Island, and wrought such devastation there, had all to pass through that narrow chasm. All the servants who lived in the offices had sat up the whole night in dread of the building being carried away. Morning then came-and Sir Thomas thus describes the scene:
"I hurried out. But, prepared as my mind had been for a scene of devastation, how much did the reality exceed my worst anticipations! The Divie had apparently subsided, it is true, but it was more be cause it had widened and disencumbered its course, than from any actual diminu-. tion of its waters. The whole Mill Island was cleared completely of shrubs, trees, and soil, except the hard summit towards the Otter's Rock; and, instead of the space being filled with that wilderness of sweets into which the eye found difficulty in penetrating, one vast and powerful red coloured river, dividing itself into two
branches against the other rocks, flowed in large streams around it, without one single obstacle to its action; with less turmoil than before indeed, but with the terrible
majesty of a mighty conqueror sweeping sternly over the carnage of his recent victery. And well might the enemy triumph! For, besides the loss of the Mill Island, which I had looked for, the beautiful hanging bank, covered with majestic forest and ornamental trees, of all kinds, and of growth so fresh and vigorous, had vanished like the scenery of a dream, and, in its place, was the garden hedge, running for between 200 and 300 yards, along the brink of a red alluvial perpendicular precipice 50 feet high, with the broad remorseless flood, rolling at its base, eating into its foundation, and, every successive minute, bringing down masses of many cubic yards. And then, from time to time, some tall and graceful tree, on the brink of the fractured portions of the bank at either end, would slowly and magnificently bend its head, and launch into the foaming waves below. The whole scene had an air of unreality about it that bewildered the senses. It was like some of those wild melodramatic exhibitions, where nature's operations are outheroded by the mechanist of a theatre, and where mountains are thrown down by artificial storms."
The ruin here described was very much owing to the confinement of the Divie for a great way above the waterfall, and its bursting at once from the gorge below it, called Macrea's Loup, into the wider theatre of its havoc. The height of the flood at Macrae's Loup was no less than 40 feet above the ordinary level! The river from that spot towards the house and offices used to present one of the richest scenes imaginable. But when the water had ebbed away, nothing was to be seen but a dark ravine of sand and gravel, covered with huge rounded lumps of stone. The offices were within a yard of the crumbling precipice of earth! Though they stand if we rightly understand the Baronet-158 feet horizontal from what used to be the
water's edge! The quantity of gravel and stone, indeed, brought down by the Divie was far greater than by any other river. It used to be remarkable for the depth of its pools; but the flood completely obliterated them, and for many weeks afterwards a dog might have walked down its whole course from EdenVOL. XXVIII. NO. CLXIX.
killie Church to the Findhorn, without having occasion to swim one yard! The Swimming Pool at Relugas, was 16 feet deep. It has now 20 feet deep of gravel laid into it, and is converted into a shallow, the bottom of which is 4 feet higher than the former surface of the water!
A branch of the pleasure walks leads down the left bank of the Divie, as you enter the Relugas property from the Dunphail march, for more than two miles, to the point of its junction with the Findhorn. Sir Thomas having had lessons read to him by former floods, had conducted the line at an elevation thought by all to be above all danger.
"The rocks and recesses of the wooded banks, and the little grassy slopes, were covered in a wild way with many thousand shrubs, of all kinds, especially with laurels, rhododendrons, azaleas, lilacs, and a profusion of roses, which were thriving vigorously, and beginning to bear blos soms, whilst the rocks were covered with the different saxifrages, hung with all sorts of creepers, and enamelled with a variety of garden flowers, all growing artlessly, as if sown by the hand of Nature. The path was therefore considered to be not unworthy of the exquisite scenery through which it led. But the flood of the 3d and 4th of August left not one fragment of it remaining, from one end to the other. Not a tree, or shrub, or flower, or piece of soil, nay, or of moss or lichen, is to be seen beneath that boldly and sublimely sketched line of flood, that appears on either side, and from end to end of these rocks, like the awful handwriting of God on the wall."
The point of junction between the Divie and the Findhorn was terminated by a picturesque rock covered with trees, and rendered accessible by a rustic bridge. The waves, at this meeting of the waters, were terrific, tossing themselves 20 feet into the air, and throwing up the drift ́ trees, and other bodies, to a great height. The bridge and the trees on the rock were swept away, and not even a blade of grass or a tuft of moss left.
"The damage done at Relugas by the flood, is perhaps not more, in^actual-va-V lue, than L. 1200; yet, when the rocky defences all along this very small property are considered, even this sum is great. But the beauties of nature cannot be estimated in money; and although Relugas
has yet enough left to captivate strangers, and to make them wonder how there could have been any thing to regret; yet ten thousand points of locality are lost, on which hung many long-cherished associations with the memory of those who can never return to sanctify the new scenes resulting from the late catastrophe. The flood of the 27th did no injury here. Principal Baird, being on his way to Relugas from Forres, on that day, called to the postboy to stop as he was crossing the Divie bridge, that he might enjoy the view of the scenery. Na, na, sir!' roar. ed the lad, smacking his whip, these are ower kittle times to be stopping on brigs!""
We now return from the Dorback and the Divie to the Findhorn, whom we left at Randolph's Bridge:
"The next spot I visited on the morning of the 4th, was the Findhorn, at Randolph's Bridge. I have already mentioned, that the flood rose to the height of fifty feet there. I found it in its greatest grandeur, flooding over the whole haugh of Rannoch, carrying large trees,
salmon, at an elevation of fifty feet above the ordinary level of the Findhorn."
We next behold him carrying off, at Logie, two acres of very fine full-grown timber, soil and all. The mill here, standing seventy-two horizontal feet from the brink of the rock over the river, and fifteen perpendicular feet above the level of its mid-channel, had a narrow escape. It was flooded three feet deep in its upper story; but was saved from destruction by a row of large ashtrees firmly rooted between it and the river. From Lord Moray's Haugh of Logie, some of the largest oaks in Scotland were rent away, and seven acres of very valuable land carried off. Sir William Cumming lost a quarter of an acre of magnificent trees from a beautiful spot near the Roane, and a wooded island, 160 yards long, by 20 broad, was swept entirely away from Ranflat Haugh. Cothall mills, too, farther down, belonging to Sir William, were totally annihilated. They consisted of an extensive group of buildings, three stories high, con
with their roots and branches, triumph-taining flour, meal, and barley mills, antly around it, and washing so far up the road leading down to it, as very nearly to run into a course which I have often been wondered at for calling an ancient channel of the river. The turmoil of the surges was so tremendous, that the pri mitive rocks shook, as the Divie bridge had done the previous evening. Nothing can convey an idea of the violence and velocity of the water that shot away from the whirling sea above the cliffs.
scarcely possible to follow with the eye the trees and wreck that floated like straws
on its surface. The force was as much more than that of a raging ocean, as gunpowder ignited within the confined tube of a cannon is more terribly powerful than the same material when suffered to explode on the open ground. I was particularly struck here with an example of the fact, that trees exposed to occasional struggles with torrents, instinctively prepare themselves to resist them. I observed one tall ash, growing a little way above Randolph's Bridge, covered to at least four-fifths of its height. It was broken over at last, but, having been taught by experience to resist the action of water, it was not rent away, whilst all those which had never been visited by floods before, were torn up like weeds. Before I left this spot, I saw one of the under gardeners wade into the water as it had begun to ebb on the haugh, and, with his umbrella, drive ashore and capture a fine
with all manner of appurtenances. Not a vestige remains; and the whole force of the river now runs through the spot where they stood. Sir Thomas himself saw one of the freestone lintels, three feet and a half long, by one foot one way, and nine inches the other, lying two miles below the site of the mills! Sir William Cumming's magnificent drive, which ran under the bluff Craig of Coulternose, superbly finished, and beautifully planted with ornamental trees and shrubs, was completely destroyed, and sixteen acres of land were cut off entirely from his farm of Mundole. Think for a moment of the power hereabouts of the Findhorn. The medium width of the channel at the Limestone Craig of Coulternose, is 185 feet. The mean depth of anumber of soundings, taken across the river, at its ordinary state, is about three feet four inches, above which the flood rose fourteen feet eight inches, making the total depth eighteen feet-so that a transverse section of the column of water passing through must have had a superficial face of 3330 square feet moving with force and velocity perfectly inconceivable. It is proposed to build the new bridge here to supply the