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A wild glen lambs feeding in the distance Enter Sandy followed by his dog

Sandy Toozy lad how do you like this work? I see by your look you think this is not fair play. Heigh-ho! I think this morning be the length of three whole days! Either I look wrong, or the sun is wearing hard on the south, and if so it is more than time a poor lad had broke his fast, who has been standing over his staff since the fall of night. But I know so well how all will be going on at home that I do not wonder at being forgot. Some of the lasses will be churning, some making cheese, some stirring the whey, and all giggling and laughing through and through the house hindering work as much as forwarding it. And the goodwife, honest woman, she will be raging and scolding about among them and laying the Critical Apparatusblame of the whole on original sin. The Goodman he will be patting their bare necks, whispering in their ears, taking a hearty pinch of snuff and then saying with a wink of the eye "Eh? How Critical Apparatuswill that do, think ye?" So that what with one thing what another it Critical Apparatusis little wonder that Sandy and poor Toozy be forgot. But keep up your heart my good dog; I would not wonder though you get the best share of my breakfast this day, for there's one coming with it that will take the heart for baith eating and drinking sadly away from your master. Aye Toozy lad, there's one coming out with your breakfast that you have more ill will at than all the parish; one that you will not give a kind look to, nor a wag of your tail—nor would you lick her hand for a bickerful of curds and cream. Editor’s NoteShe wonders what you ail at her, but I know that bravely—You are pg 8jealous of her, thinking that I like her better than you—O man it is bairnly like in you to think that my love for a bonny lass can alter my affection for an old dog. Ah Toozy! If I had had nought to look for but my meal, as you have this morning, it would not have been so long to me. You have never been in love I suspect Toozy? Aye! You look as if you knew something about it. What are you turning up your lug at? You look as if you saw something in that direction? I hope it is not a spirit that my eyes cannot discern. You are right Toozy you are right! for what do I see now! Grace and beauty yonder she comes! Lie still fond heart, lie still! and do not flutter and burst away from your little frail tenement altogether, burning hot as it is! What are these tears dropping down like hailstones for? O where shall I hide myself, or what shall I do, for this is a glow of pleasure I cannot brook? What an air, and what a grace in every movement! How swiftly and sweetly she trips it! If ever a human thing was endowed with the maike and motion of an an-gel—What do I see? Hobgoblins of despair! May I never stir off this spot if it is not old Henny and the beard! O when will I get my breath again. This will be a bitter breakfast to me—but I'll take it—Toozy billy, you get no more than your share. (Enter old Henny)

Henny I fear you would be looking long for me this morning Sandy?

Sandy I was looking for somebody.

Henny Another than me it seems. But the goodwife has made Mary such a morning about you that she would not come, and I was obliged to take her place although it was not my day. I thought her Critical Apparatusvery unmindful of you, and that it was a pity you should want your breakfast any longer for the prudery of a miniken.

Sandy (sarcastically) Thank you. We are all much obliged to you—there is not a doubt of it.

Henny You have but a cauldrife way of expressing your obligation Sandy.

Sandy What would you have me to say?

Henny I have come far with your breakfast.

Sandy Yes—but while doing that you were doing nought else.

Henny I have warmed myself very much. Won't you give me a share of your plaid lest I take cold?

Sandy You are welcome to the plaid altogether as long as you stay. (flings it at her)

Henny Thank you kindly Sandy—though I would have liked a share of it better. Look what o'clock it is.

Sandy I have no rule but the sun. I suppose it is near eleven.

Henny (pulling out a fine watch) It is only half past nine. How do you pg 9contrive to live in this wilderness without a watch?

Sandy I know when daylight rises, and when it grows dark and for all the rest I am guided by circumstances. Every one was not born with a bag of gold about his neck like you.

Henny But would you like to have a watch Sandy?

Sandy I cannot say but I would if it were convenient.

Henny What will you give me for this one?

Sandy I have nothing to give you, and do not want her.

Henny (leering) Yes—but you have something you could give me, and something that was never your own neither.

Sandy That is impossible—What is it?

Henny Could you not think of any thing, the most desirable to a young woman, which you never had?

Sandy Oh you mean a husband. That is rather a heavy price for a watch.

Editor’s Note

Henny I'll take less from a friend perhaps. Will you give me a pair of gloves on your wedding night for her?

Sandy That is very little. Yes I will.

Henny And promise to wind her up every night till then?

Sandy Yes I will.

Henny Then it is a bargain—The watch is your's. (gives it)

Sandy This will never do—It is a joke Henny. I cannot have your watch.

Henny Why? It is a fair bargain. You promise me all I ask for it. A pair of gloves on your wedding night; and to wind the watch up every night till then. Or pay the forfeit.

Sandy That is a new clause. I heard not of a forfeit before.

Henny Put her up, put her up; the watch is your's; the forfeit shall not be a heavy one.

Sandy What shall it be?

Henny A kiss on the bridal eve.

Sandy No no—It is no bargain. My kisses will not then be my own to give.

Henny It is but a small matter I ask. I want to make you a present of the watch, but merely to ask some little favour by way of remu-neration.

Sandy Upon my word you are very good, and very kind. I do not think I ever met with so much unaffected kindness. The world mistakes you Henny. It does not know what a generous heart you possess. The watch will be good company to me, and I would cheerfully take the loan of her until I am married, and give you half a dozen of kisses in return if they were mine to give.

pg 10

Henny Then what is to hinder you from parting with them as long as they are your's to give?

Sandy That is rather a home stroke! But what do kisses avail when they are not to pass as love tokens?

Henny If I be pleased to take them as I get them what is that to you?

Sandy (aside) There's no getting off here—Well well then Henny, here is a stick and a good knife—nick on—and I shall yerk you off plenty of them—There's one mind—two, nick on—three, four, five,—lay on the nicks. Six, seven, eight a dozen—smack smack smack and a half dozen, Critical Apparatusand one to tell them—now Henny, the grand watch is mine, and what the better are you?

Henny You may well ask—It was a whim of mine and I do not rue it—You are a nice lad—a dear lad Sandy to some who like you and Editor’s Notecannot get you. Have you a full stock of sheep for your wages?

Sandy Yes I have a full stock, but they are not quite free.

Henny How much would it take to make them free?

Sandy More than I'll win this year.

Henny See—will this clear you with the world? Take this ten pound note and pay your sheep for I heard that the man you bought them from was complaining that he could not get it.

Sandy I never knew he wanted it. He said to me he did not.

Henny I assure you he has been making very free with your credit. Take the money I brought it for you knowing how necessary it is for a young man to keep up his credit. If you never pay me I shall not lay you in prison for it.

Sandy To say the truth Henny you are the most kind disinterested friend I ever met with. I will take the loan of your money since my neighbour wants it and give you the best security for it.

Henny Yes, I'll have the best security. Give me your hand on it. (While Sandy is giving her his hand she slips a book from her pocket opens it Editor’s Noteand lays their joined hands on it) Now, there we have joined hands on the open bible no bond can be so strong as that.

Sandy What is that for?

Henny It is done: and the money and the watch are yours. Goodbye Sandy I must go home to my work—think on what we have done and perhaps it may spoil your sport with Mary to night. She is to wake with you for I heard the goodwife say it. But perhaps she may refuse to come—Goodbye Sandy—Blessings on you—You are a sweet lad.

Notes Settings


Critical Apparatus
7(c) The Goodman he will be ] The good-[end, of page] Goodman he will be
Critical Apparatus
7(d) what with one thing what another ] what with one thing and another
Critical Apparatus
7(d) Sandy and poor Toozy be forgot. ] Sandy and poor Toozy are forgot.
Editor’s Note
7(d)–8(a) You are jealous of her Hogg is again drawing on memories of his own youth. In his early poem 'The Author's Address to his Auld Dog Hector' he writes:
  • When sitting with my bonny Meg,
  •    Mair happy than a prince could be,
  • Thou plac'd thee by her other leg,
  •    An' watched her wi' a jealous ee.
  • An' then, at ony start or steer,
  •    Thou wad ha'e worried furiouslye;
  • While I was forc'd to curse and swear,
  •    Afore thou wad forbidden be.
(The Mountain Bard, ed. by Suzanne Gilbert (S/SC, 2007), p. 110)
Critical Apparatus
8(c) want your breakfast any longer for the prudery of a miniken. ] want your breakfast any longer for her prudery.
Editor’s Note
9(b) a pair of gloves on your wedding night traditionally, a gift of gloves signifies marriage. Henny later says that Sandy promised to 'wed me with a glove': see 54(c).
Critical Apparatus
10(b) and one to tell them—now Henny,] and one to tell them [end of line] now Henny,
Editor’s Note
10(b) Have you a full stock of sheep for your wages? [...] not quite free Sandy's work as a shepherd earns him the right to keep a specified number of his own sheep on the farm, but he has not yet fully paid the purchase price for his sheep.
Editor’s Note
10(d) we have joined hands on the open bible to handfast was to make a contract by a symbolic joining of hands. In rural Scotland in the eighteenth century, trial marriages which were to last for a year and a day were often agreed by handfasting: see DSL under handfast.
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