The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 48 pages of information about The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction.

About 3,700,000 cwt. of sugar are annually imported from the West Indies.  An advance in price, therefore, of one penny per pound is a charge on the public of 1,726,600_l._ a year, being more than one-third of the gross amount of the duty levied at the Custom-house for the revenue.

Silk.

Lord Kingston has upwards of 30,000 mulberry-trees growing upon one estate in Ireland, and has already sent raw silk into the market.

* * * * *

SINGULAR ASSASSINATION IN KINCARDINESHIRE.

(For the Mirror.)

The fate of one of the sheriffs of this county, in former times, merits notice, especially as connected with a ruin in the parish of Eccliscraig, formerly a place of great strength, being erected on a perpendicular and peninsulated rock, sixty feet above the sea, at the mouth of a small rivulet.  It was built in consequence of a murder committed in the reign of James the First, and the circumstance deserves to be recorded, as it affords a specimen of the barbarity of the times.  Melville, sheriff of Kincardineshire, had, by a vigorous exercise of his authority, rendered himself so very obnoxious to the barons of the county, that they had made repeated complaints to the king.  On the last of these occasions the king, in a fit of impatience, happened to say to Barclay, of Mathers, “I wish that sheriff were sodden and supped in brue.”  Barclay instantly withdrew, and reported to his neighbours the king’s words, which they resolved literally to fulfil.  Accordingly, the conspirators invited the unsuspecting Melville to a hunting party in the forest of Garvock; where, having a fire kindled, and a cauldron of water boiling on it, they rushed to the spot, stripped the sheriff naked, and threw him headlong into the boiling vessel:  after which, on pretence of fulfilling the royal mandate, each swallowed a spoonful of the broth.  After this cannibal feast, Barclay, to screen himself from the vengeance of the king, built this fortress, which before the invention of gunpowder must have been impregnable.  Some of the conspirators were afterwards pardoned.  One of the pardons is said to be still in existence; and the reason assigned for granting it is, that the conspirator was within the tenth degree of kin to Macduff, thane of Fife.

CHARLES STUART.

* * * * *

USE OF HORSE-CHESTNUTS.

(For the Mirror.)

These nuts are much used in France and in Switzerland, in whitening not only of hemp and flax, but also of silk and wool.  They contain a soapy juice, fit for washing of linens and stuffs, for milling of caps and stockings, &c., and for fulling of stuffs and cloths.

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The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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