clous landlords ; " ' " the animating rabble " - by which of old a chief was attended ; " the rude speech of a barbarous people ; " ' " the laxity of their conversation, by which the inquirer, by a kind of in- tellectual retrogradation, knows less as he hears more;" 4 "the Caledonian bigotry " which helps " an inaccurate auditor " to believe in the genuineness of Ossian/'
To the sarcasms which had their foundation in Johnson's dislike of Presbyterianism Lowlanders and Highlanders were equally ex- posed. On Knox and "the ruffians of reformation"" he has no mercy. It is true that he maintains that " we read with as little emotion the violence of Knox and his followers as the irruptions of Alaric and the Goths." 7 But how deeply he was moved Boswell shows, where he describes him among the ruins of the once glorious magnificence of St. Andrews. " I happened to ask where John Knox was buried. Dr. Johnson burst out, ' I hope in the high-way. I have been looking at his reformations.' ' The sight of the ruined houses of prayer in Skye drew from him the assertion that " the malignant influence of Calvinism has blasted ceremony and decency together." In another passage he describes the ancient "epide- mical enthusiasm compounded of sullen scrupulousness and warlike ferocity, which, in a people whom idleness resigned to their own thoughts, was long transmitted in its full strength from the old to the young." Ul Even for this inveterate ill a cure had at length been found. " By trade and intercourse with England it is visibly abating."
By the passages in which he described the bareness of the eastern coast the most irritation was caused. The very hedges were of stone, and not a tree was to be seen that was not younger than himself. " A tree might be a show in Scotland as a horse in Venice." For this he was handled as roughly as Joseph's brethren. He was little better than a spy who had come to see the nakedness of the land. The Scotchmen of that day could not know, as we know now, that " he treated Scotland no worse than he did even his best friends, whose characters he used to give as they appeared to him both in light and shade. ' He was fond of discri-
1 Works, ix. 86. 2 lit. many churches to the ground "(South's Sermons,
3 Ib. p. 112. 4 ib. p. 47. ed. 1823, i. 173). No man upheld the Reformed
76. p. 115. Church of England more strongly than South. Ib. p. 3. Johnson, it should be remarked, ' Works, ix. 6.
does not write "the ruffians of the Reforma- * BoswelPsyy/;w, v. 61.
tion." He uses the word as South does, when he 9 Works, ix. 61. "' Ib. p. 4.
speaks of "those times which had reformed so u Ib. p. 7.