Reminiscences of Scottish Life and Character eBook

Edward Bannerman Ramsay
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 430 pages of information about Reminiscences of Scottish Life and Character.
on his character, I could not resist the wish to show another element, drawn from his ancestry, that went to the forming of that character.  Was not our Dean a worthy representative of Puritan leaders who refused to go into the violence of the Covenant—­of the Bishop of unreproached life, who read the Thirty-nine Articles with an unconcealed desire to include conscientious Dissenters—­of many peaceful gentlemen on the banks of the Dee, who mixed a happy playful humour with a catholic reverence for that Christianity which he could recognise in other sects, though preferring his own?

FOOTNOTES: 

[7] The present generation of Burnetts think that those slang names were invented by Barclay, but I knew him well, and venture to doubt his humorous powers.  In the midst of “sporting” and violent excitement he was serious in talk, as became the descendant of the old Quakers.

[8] Mrs. Russell had lost her two sons by a strange fatality—­both were drowned, the elder, Lockhart, while skating at Bath, about 1805-6, James, the younger, in crossing the river Dee in a boat rowed by himself in 1827.

III.

Edward Ramsay left Somersetshire amidst the general regrets of his parishioners and neighbours, and entered on his Edinburgh career 1st January 1824.  The journal which I am now using has not hitherto spoken much of the differing opinions of his brother clergymen, although there is sometimes a clergyman noted as “very low,” and elsewhere, one branded as a “concealed Papist.”  But in Edinburgh—­it is vain to conceal it—­every profession must be broken into parties.  He found Edinburgh, or rather I should say the Episcopal Church in Edinburgh, then theologically divided between the Evangelicals, headed by the Rev. Edward Craig and the old-fashioned Churchmen, the rather moral school, of which Mr. Alison was the distinguished ornament.  Mr. Ramsay went to St. George’s Chapel, York Place, as Mr. Shannon’s curate, in the beginning of 1824, and remained doing that duty for two and a half years.  He then went to St. Paul’s, Carrubber’s Close, where he laboured for a year.

In 1825 Ramsay “toiled on” with sermons and wrote a series on the Articles.  “A great improvement,” he says, “must have taken place in Edinburgh, for unquestionably the sermons I then got credit for we should all think little of now[9].”  In 1826 he left Mr. Shannon’s chapel, and took the single charge of the quaint old chapel of St. Paul’s, Carrubber’s Close.  Amongst the events recorded of the year was the acquaintance he made by officiating at the funeral of Lady Scott, Sir Walter’s wife.  In 1827 he mentions a change, “a considerable move to me, which, under God, has been a good one.”  He closed with an offer of the curacy of St. John’s, under Bishop Sandford, when he was thirty-seven years of age.  In spring he was ill, and went to visit his

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Reminiscences of Scottish Life and Character from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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