Page images
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors]

ven

placed in a form somewhat oval. Just beyond the oval, aud at one end of it, facing N.N. E. are two stones six feet high, one of which is cloven from top to bottom : the other stones are from two to three feet high. The mount on which they all stand is three or four feet high. The center of the mount has an excavation, seven feet long, three feet wide for about one-third of the length, and two feet for the remainder. The stones are of hard clay-slate. The landlady's daughter at Laxey gave me the following traditionary story of them: The proprietor of the land on which they rest being desirous of removing them, took some labourers to effect his purpose. Being arrived at the stones, and looking back, he saw his house on fire, and consequently returned in haste. Having arrived at home he found his house as it should be, but saw the stones on fire. The man was too wise to disregard so clear an omen; and the stones have ever since remained undisturbed. The natives do not seem to form even a conjecture of their original use, nor ever to have heard of such beings as Druids.

Oncan is a village rather more than two miles from Douglas. The church is dedicated to

an on

es

Onca, the mother of St. Patrick. In the churchyard are usually buried the deceased aliens of Douglas. From the high ground of this parish and from Clayhead, are fine views of the sea, usually enlivened by coal brigs trading between Cumberland and Dublin, and of smaller vessels sailing in or out of Douglas harbour.

From Oncan to Douglas is a pleasant walk over the sands. We approach them by a mountain cascade, which some years ago turned the wheel of a corn mill, now burned down; and further on, pass another somewhat similar, both being destitute of trees or bushes.

Being returned from the promised excursion, I have now only to conduct the reader through the inland parish of Marown, intersected by the road from Douglas to St. John's. The church is situated on its southern side, five miles from Douglas' and six from Peel. The road is very pleasant, and one part of it is over a rising ground, called Lhiaght y Kinny, the Grave of Kinny, who is said to have attempted, for a trifing wager, to run stark naked, on a very snowy winter's day, from Douglas to Bishop'scourt and back, and who, on returning, fell down dead on this spot.

Two lines of an epitaph are,
!“ No debts, no laws obliged him to fly

From the dear land of his nativity.”
The subject of the poetry was an Irishman.

Nearly opposite the turning to Kirk Marown are the walls of Old Kirk, formerly called St. Trinion's, said to have been erected in consequence of a vow made by a ship-wrecked person.

The present ruinous state of the building is ascribed to the malice of some unlucky demons who, for want of better employment, amused themselves with throwing off the roof. A great quantity of Adiantum, maiden-hair, grows about the walls.

amu

BOOK II.

ON THE CONSTITUTION AND LAWS OF THE ISLE

· OF MAN.

CHAPTER I.

On the Constitution. THE nature of the constitution of a country is known by the powers and acknowledged rights of the people. If these have no share, by representation or otherwise, in any legislative or juridical concerns, the constitution is despotic, whether there is one or more governors, or whether the country itself is under the subjection of a foreign power. As the people acquire a voice in making or executing a law, the constitution becomes mixed; and when they have obtained an exclusive voice, it is democratical. I pass over aristocracies, polygarchies, oligarchies, and hierarchies, whether Druidical, Christian, or of any other religious sect, because they may be, and often are, as arbitrary as an absolute monarchy.

« PreviousContinue »