HOUSKS AND MKAI.S. .^
reservoir. The spirits were drunk out oi -,\ silver qualf, and ilie ale unt ol horns. Finally a large roll of tobacco was presented by way of desert, and every individual took a comfortable quid, lo prevent the bad effects of the morning air." '
Knox, in his Tour through t/ic Highlands? gives u still vaster bill of fare. The houses of the country gentlemen were lor the most part small. " It was only on festivals or upon ceremonious occasions, that the dining-room was used. 1'eople lived mostly in the family bed-chamber, where friends and neighbours were received without scruple. Many an easy, comfortable meal," writes Ramsay, of Ochtertyre, "had 1 made in that way." : It was to this custom that the Scotch had of turning a bed-room into an eating- room that an English traveller refers, when he says that the Edinburgh taverns are the worst in the world, for "you sup underground in a bed-chamber." ' Even at the modern houses there was generally a total absence of an accommodation such as would not at the present day be tolerated in a labourer's cottage by a sanitary inspector in any district in England."
The state of the capital was far worse even than the state of the country. It was one of the last places in the world on which would have been bestowed that favourite and almost exalted epithet of praise ncal* The houses, indeed, were solidly built, and the rooms of the well-to-do people were comfortable and clean, and often spacious. " Nothing could form a stronger contrast than the difference between the outside and the inside of the door." Within all was decency and propriety, without was a filthy stair case leading down into a filthy street, livery story was a com- plete house, occupied by a separate family. The steep and dark staircase was common to all, and was kept clean by none. It was put to the basest uses. 7 The gentry did not commonly occupy the lowest stories or the highest. The following is the list of the inhabitants of a good house in the High Street :
" First door upstairs, Mr. Stirling, fishmonger.
"Second door, Mrs. Urquhart, who kept a lodging-house of good repute.
" Third flat, the Dowager Countess of Balcarras.
"Fourth flat, Mrs. Uudian, of Kelly.
' Humphry Clinker, iii. 28. (he Ilebriiles where the same ilrliciency is Mill
- Knox's 7'our, p. 199. round.
' Scotland ami Scotsmen in //if F.ii'Jileenl/i " (jray calls (Jcneva " neal," iiiul lli: repast
Centuiy, ii. 65. which was set Ix-fore him al the "(iranile (.'liar-
' Cent/email's Mnga:int for 1771, p. 543. Ireiise" "extremely neat." 'iray's Works, e<l.
5 BosweH's/0AHrt>, v. 172. There are inns in 1858, ii. 62, 63.
7 Humphry Clinker, ii. 221, anil Arnot's Hillary of Edinburgh, p. 241.