Page:Notes and Queries - Series 9 - Volume 9.djvu/521

This page needs to be proofread.


9 8. IX. JUNE 28, 1902.] NOTES AND QUERIES.


513


his friends would gladly have embraced ; and since published many of them in his own name."

Mr. John Birrel, also writing to Dr. Ander- son on this subject (pp. 1029-30), remarked :

"Some time before the poet's father died, he delivered the book containing the first draught of some of Michael's poems, his sermons, and other papers, into my hand, desiring I would keep them.

Some years after I entered upon terms with

Mr. Morison, of Perth, to sell the MSS. for the benefit of auld Annie [the poet's mother], who was in very destitute circumstances. But in the mean- time Dr. Baird wrote for them, with a view to republish Michael's poems, with any others that could be procured of his. I sent them to him gladly, hoping soon to see the whole in print, and the old woman decently provided for in consequence. The finished book of Michael's poems was given to Mr. Logan, who never returned them [sic]. Many a time, with tears trickling down his cheeks, has old Alex- ander told me how much he was disappointed in Logan, who came unexpectedly and got all the papers, letters, and the books away, without giving him time to take a note of the titles, or getting a receipt for the papers, c. After the publication he went over to Edinburgh to recover them. Mr. Logan desired him to call again, and they would be ready. He did so ; but he was gone out, and no message left. He saw Mr. Logan on the street, who told him that he had left the poems with the servants, but that, as he did not get them, he was afraid the servants had taken them, and singed fowls with them."

" David Pearson," he adds, in another place, "does not remember of seeing the 'Ode to the Fountain,' ' The Vernal Ode,' Ode to Paoli,'

  • Chorus of Elysian Bards,' or the * Danish Odes,'

until he saw them in print. But the rest of the publication he decidedly ascribes to Michael, and in a most particular manner the * Cuckoo,' * Salgar and Morna,' and the other k Eclogue.' "

It will be seen that Logan is declared by Pearson to have received from Bruce's father "the whole of his manuscripts," and by Birrel to have "got all the papers, letters, and books away," and that "the finished book " was never returned ; further, that Alexander Bruce "did not get them" (the MSS., &c.) back from Logan. But Mr. Birrel received from the poet's father some time before he died " the book containing the first draught of some of Michael's poems, his ser- mons, and other papers." Were these returned by Logan, or haa they not been seen by him 1 The mention of " sermons " among the youth- ful poet's productions lays the testimony of Birrel open to grave suspicion. What time or opportunity or reason could Bruce have had for the writing of sermons in the course of his brief life of twenty-one years and three months ?

The foregoing narrative of Birrel is ampli- fied in an astonishing fashion by Dr. Mac- kelvie in paragraphs 77, 78 (pp. 108-10).' Some of the details flatly contradict Birrel, e.g. :


" Logan took him [Alexander Bruce] to his lodg- ings, where he delivered to him a few loose papers containing the first draught of ' Loehleven, ' The Last Day, and * Lochleven no More,' expecting he would be content with these."

Then follows the apocryphal story of the "singed fowls." It is on such conflicting testimony that the Rev. John Logan, F.R.S.E., has been charged with treachery and utter heartlessness towards his college friend Michael Bruce. A careful perusal of Dr. Mackelvie's volume does not give one a favour- able impression of his qualifications as a bio grapher. The same remark may with even more justice be applied to Dr. Grosart.

ADAM SMAIL. Edinburgh.

AN UNKNOWN FLEETWOOD PEDIGREE (9 th S. ix. 261, 429). Sir Robert Smyth, of Upton, Essex, first baronet, died 12 June, 1669, cet. seventy-five, having married Judith, daughter of Nicholas Walmesley. She died 1653, cet. forty-eight. They had, according to Wotton and Betham's 'Baronetages,' three sons and four daughters. One of the daughters, Hester, was married to Robert Fleet wood, of The Vache, in Buckinghamshire, Esq. Was this Robert the son of George Fleetwood the regicide? R. C. BOSTOCK.

ANALOGOUS TITLES OF BOOKS (9 th S. ix. 468). There is no copyright in a title per se, but the protection of the law can be claimed when it can be proved that a title is used fraudulently,^., "where the result is to induce the public to buy one work under the im- pression that they are buying another ; and this appears to be the only true ground on which titles of books can claim protection " (Scrutton, * Laws of Copyright,' p. 30, 1883).

The following extract from the Times report of a case now before the court will serve as an example :

"Cox v. Sports Publishing Co. (Limited). In this action Mr. Horace Cox, the registered pro- prietor of the well-known weekly paper called the Field, the Farm, the Garden, the Country Gentleman's Newspaper, and generally known as the Field, moved to restrain the defendant until the trial of the action or further order from printing, pro- ducing, publishing, advertising, or selling or dis- posing of a monthly magazine called field and Kennel, or any publication representing or being a colourable imitation of the Field. Mr. Justice Buckley, without calling on the defendants' counsel, on their undertaking to keep an account of profits until the trial, refused to make any order on the motion except that the costs should be costs in the action. His Lordship said that the plaintiffs well- known publication had been in existence for forty- nine years, and was published weekly. The de- fendants' publication had only been recently started, and was published monthly. The two publications