button to main menu  Gents Mag 1805 p.919

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Gentleman's Magazine 1805 p.919
quivered prettily on the margin of the Lake, and a little fleet of boats rode at anchor in the peaceful harbour of Low-wood. We ascended a gentle eminence in a lane leading to the village of Troutbeck, and frequently turned to survey the prominent beauties of the surrounding landscape. The stupendous chaos of rocks terminating the Northern shore, to us appeared no other than the Pyrenean Chain, and a very moderate exertion of the fancy transported us to the classic borders of the Leman Lake. Notwithstanding the variety of character which the shores of Windermere present, the oblong regularity of its sides is rarely diversified by the jutting of a promontory or the sinuosity of a bay. Before us rose, in a magnificent cluster, the rocks of Hardnose, Wryknot, Rainsbarrow, &c. towering one above another in awful grandeur, and harmonizing all the infinite varieties of shade, while the silver pikes of Langdale undulating fancifully along the verge of the horizon, filled the broken intervals of distance. From these sloped the tame fells of Coniston, degenerating Southward into low and naked downs, shelving to the shores enlivened here and there by inclosures of green pasture and yellow corn. Some handsome knolls, pointed with wood, variegate the ornaments of the Eastern beach. The mediocrity of the Southern boundary, however conspicuous, might have escaped the severity of Criticism, if it were not unfortunately exposed by the splendour of connexion. In scenes like these, where Nature, working in the style of a bold and independent Master, launches into the wild and fanciful, and soars beyond the conception of human genius, we are unable to reconcile an association so distasteful, and would rather have been blind to the beauties, than have witnessed the deformities of the picture. Consistency is surely compatible with the boldest design; and it is painful to see the liveliest colours mixed on the same canvass with the sombre.
The woody valley of Troutbeck, or Trout-river, an interesting walk of two miles from Low-wood, boasts a few scattered cottages, a moss-grey church, and a stream. so beautifully clear that not a fish nor a weed can escape detection. But these are not the only boast of Troutbeck. The modest register of her sons, "To fortune and to Fame unknown," is ennobled by the birth of Romney and Wilson; names honourably distinguished in the history of our Arts and Jurisprudence.
We crossed the river and mounted a green slope, ornamented by the neat and hospitable mansion in which the learned Judge tranquillized the evening of his active life.

Untainted by the guilty bribe,
Uncurs'd amid the harpy tribe,
No orphan's cry to wound his ear,
His honour and his conscience clear!
There is a capacious quarry above Troutbeck, that furnishes a stone of excellent durability, and from this were conveyed the materials employed in the last reparation of Westminster Hall. On our descent towards the Howe, and the farm-house of the Stricklands, we snatched a glance of the river working its way furiously through the glen, and almost buried in the depth of its woody sides. Here opened an extensive view of the Southern shore, comprising the farthest sweep of the Lake, and the islands floating in its bosom. Beneath us, in a marshy bottom, stood the heavy edifice of Calgarth House, the residence of the Bishop of Llandaff; a station so unhappily selected, as to exclude every interesting view of the enchanting scenery that surrounds it.
On our return we made a frugal meal in the arbour of Low-wood. The sun shone most splendidly on the mountains, and the serene azure sky was without a cloud. The white sail flitted by the wall of the garden, relieved at intervals by the alternate dashing of the labouring oar.
We revelled through the long evening under the majestic rocks of Rydal. The path winding round the head of the Lake opened upon a rich vale of meadow, luxuriant from the moisture of its mother streams. Here we crossed the river Rothay, and traced it through the valley, which is of the finest verdure. We were awed at the approach of those rugged rocks that looked so smooth and silken at a distance. Their broad bases are shrouded in a labyrinth of wood, while their loftier sides are occasionally broken by a projecting point, or an insulated hollow. Here the solitary cow, cautiously descending, crops in uninterrupted security the delicious herbage. Such is the tremendous elevation to which she aspires, that the animated speck would be unperceived but for an accidental
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