First Statistical Account of the Parish of Buittle.

Written in 1793 by the Rev. George Maxwell.

Name, Situation, and Extent.

Various opinions are entertained as to the derivation of the name. Some have thought that Boot-hill, or Butt-hill, was the original name of that territory which now composes the parish of Buittle, on account of the frequent musters of cavalry, or archers, that must have taken place in the vicinity of the castle after-mentioned. With as much probability, however, it may be suggested, that the word Buittle is but a contraction of Bowet-hill or Bowet-hall, an appellation occasioned by the beacons in the neighbourhood of the castle alluded to; or the great light which is displayed on festive or solemn occasions. Men of the name of Bootle, too, are frequent in England, and to be found in Scotland. Buittle is one of those parishes in the Stewartry of Galloway, that border upon the Solway Frith, and have the advantages of navigation. From the march of Crossmichael, upon the north, Buittle extends towards the sea. This is the length of the parish, and includes about 8 miles. On the whole of the east side it is bounded by the river and parish of Urr. From thence to Kelton and Rerrick, which are coterminous with Buittle, on the west and south-west, its average breadth may be 3 miles.

Soil, Surface, Hills etc.

The soil in Buittle is like most of the land in lower Galloway (especially near the mouth of the Urr), kindly and fertile, even beyond its appearance. The surface of Buittle is unequal, and justifies Buchanan's remark upon Galloway in general:- "Nufquam fere in montes attollitur, fed collibus tantum frequentibus intumefit." The hills, however, being mostly green and without heath, have lately drawn the attention of the industrious; nor have their pains been ill repaid, as the soil is often found deeper on the heights than on the lower ground. It is here to be observed also, that there are few hills in this part of Galloway, where cultivation is at all practicable, that do not bear distinct marks of the plough. The depths of the furrows, too, plainly declare, that this tillage has not been casual, or merely experimental, but frequent and successive. This should set both the ancient population and industry of this part of Scotland in a more favourable light, than that in which they are usually beheld. It also affords probability to a tradition repeated by the country people to this day, "That at a time when Scotland was under a papal interdict, or sentence of cursing from the Pope, it was found that his Holiness had forgot to curse the hills, though he had commanded the land, usually arable, to yield no increase; and that while this sentence remained, the people were necessitated to seek tillage ground, in places unusual and improbable." (That King Robert Bruce, and what part of Scotland submitted to him, were under the Pope's curse for a good many years, and that Galloway acknowledged his authority pretty early, everyone knows; but if the above tradition, as standing connected with this fact, is true, we may place it among the few benefits that superstition has conferred on mankind.) The grass through the greater part of Buittle is excellent, being mostly what is called the "Sheeps fescue grass." Exclusive of other good properties, it may be averted to, that this plant defies extirpation by either bad farming or bad stocking: For often when land is so much plowed that it will bear no more corn, and even the roots of the large grasses are destroyed, we see the field covered with the fescue in a very short time. Again, by overstocking a pasture, the seed stalks of most grasses are eaten up, and the very roots prayed upon. But the prodigious crop of small seeds, light and easily transferred by the winds, afforded by the fescue, hinders its destruction in the former sense; and the smallness of its fibrous roots in the latter.

Plants etc.

The natural productions of Buittle differ little from those of the lower parts of Galloway in general, and which, in all probability, will be particularly mentioned in the account of every parish belonging to that district. The plants and flowers in Buittle are no ways remarkable. Even by gentlemen in affluent circumstances, that cultivation of the earth, which produces an immediate return, and connects with general utility, is preferred to attempts of unprofitable curiosity, as to rearing exotic plants, or even those of this climate that are of a precarious growth. This parish, indeed, abounds so much with excellent natural shelter, that it is believed few plants or trees would fail here, that succeed well in any other part of Scotland, if not in Britain. With great safety one might take any bet, that, communibus diebus, the thermometer stands higher in Buittle than it does in London. For some ages, this parish was, in consequence of the above natural advantages, distinguished as abounding with orchards. Of late, however, these have fallen much into decay. It has indeed been complained of, that for many years past the growth of fruit-timber, and of trees in general, has been less favoured by the temperature of the air than formerly; and some gloomy philosophers have dreaded, that Scotland might experience the calamities of Iceland, or Danish Greenland. Even under less dreary impressions, candour must admit, that, for these 15 or 20 years, new plantations have not come on so vigorously as could have been expected; and that the fruits, such as apples, pears etc., have not ripened to the degree of perfection, that even middle aged people affirm to have been formerly common.

Animal Flowers.

Till of late, perhaps, it has not been much adverted to, that the animal flower, or water polypus, is even common alongst the shores of Buittle, Colvend, and very likely around the whole coast of the Stewartry of Galloway. The form of these polypuses is elegant and pleasantly diversified. Some are found resembling the sun-flower, some the hundred leafed rose, but the greater number bear the likeness of the poppy. The colours differ as much as the form. Sometimes the animal flower is of a deep purple, frequently of a rose colour, but mostly of a light red or fleshy hue. The most beautiful of them, that could be picked up, have often been carried from the shore of Colvend, 12 or 15 miles up into the country, where they have lived, fed on worms, and even bred for several weeks, and might have existed longer, if they could have been supplied with sea-water. In a word, it seems probable, that an industrious naturalist might discover, on this coast, some of those singular animals, not much inferior to those produced in the Antilles, and other tropical countries. (I assume this refers to sea-anemones. JB)


As the south end of Buittle is washed by the Solway Frith, a good deal of fish is taken, and much more might be had. As other subsistence is plenty, however, and as labourers and their families are maintained by their employers, neither choice nor necessity leads anyone to follow the fishing business, much further than as an amusement. Nevertheless, it is believed by many judicious people, that if a few fishermen from the Highlands should settle about the mouth of the Urr, they would find profitable employment, and be of service to the country around. The fish usually taken at present are, salmon, cod, flounders, etc Cockles, muscles, and several other kinds of shell fish are also to be had in tolerable plenty.


The quadrupeds are entirely of the common sort, and the black cattle (which are almost all polled) are of a good shape. During the time that a farmer society subsisted at Dumfries, which invited the tenentry to show their best breeding cattle, and distributed premiums, the mould of cattle was visibly improved. Since that society was dropt, farmers have become, it is thought, more careless, both in Buittle, and in many parishes around. The breed of horses is much improved, so far as concerns the purposes of agriculture, but the old hardy Galloway species is mostly extinct. Sheep are kept in small numbers, being thought prejudicial to the pastures where black cattle are fed; nor is the growth of wool attended to, or considered as an object of profit, unless on the small scale of domestic economy.


To mention the feathered race might here seem to be a matter of levity; but when it is considered that they, perhaps, of all living creatures, have the most delicate sensations, as to climate and the state of the air; that nature has enabled, or even instructed them, to choose or to change their residence accordingly; and that their appearance or absence may afford no contemptible estimate of the increasing warmth or cold of any country, (things much connected with the state of agriculture), on may venture to hazard ridicule on this subject. Perhaps inattention to subjects not visibly important, and ignorance of natural history, might hinder our ancestors from remarking upon birds any ways singular. If that has not been the case, this country has lately been frequented by several that used seldom to appear in Scotland. Since some groves of pines came to be of a respectable growth, the cross-bills have been frequently seen, and it is believed breeds in the country. The bull-finch is common, and pheasants have been observed, which in all probability, must have come from England. Quails, hardly known a few years age, are now in abundance. In hard winters, too, the Bohemian chatterer, and even some Arctic birds have visited us. The common moor and black game have disappeared from the parish, since agriculture became extensive, and the heath, broom, furze, etc., were destroyed. Other game would be very plenty, but the game laws have never been rigorously executed in this part of the country, unless when people break fences, disturb cattle, and do the farmers wanton mischief in the course of their amusement.


As to minerals or fossils, little can be here mentioned, serving either to gratify curiosity, or prompt industry. Pock crystals, but of no great brilliancy, are often found. Tacs and spars of several kinds are pretty frequently met with; and iron ore appears to be in such abundance in Buittle, as well as the neighbouring parishes, that some have thought an iron manufacture might be copiously supplied. Certain burrows in the earth, frequently talked of in different parts of the country, would lead one to think that iron mad been wrought in this part of the world, at a very early period. There is still some marl in almost every moss; but, as lime can be had by water carriage, marl is now but little valued.

Farms, Rents, and Proprietors.

The generality of farms in Buittle are of moderate extent. Some are of 300 acres or more; but these, (with an exception or two), consist of broken or hilly ground. There may be about half a dozen farmers in the parish, who pay £200 a year of rent, or upwards; hardly so many paying from £10 to £20. The most common rent is from £70 to £120 per annum. Indeed, in buittle, property of the landed sort is not ill divided, either among the landholders or the tenantry. There are 15 heritors in the parish;- the largest estate is about £1000 per annum, and there is only one below £70.

Fuel, Cultivation, and Produce.

From a port in the Urr, at Barlochan, or Garden Creek, the greater part of the parish is supplied with lime. That port lies to the east side of the parish, and is centrical. At Munches, about a mile further up the river, some is also landed. Lately, (and most timeously) coal has been imported at a reasonable rate, namely, at 10d. the Carlisle bushel. While this country retains its sober senses and habits, it cannot readily forget the persons by whose interposition and efforts this desirable event has been brought about. Tillage and pasturage are almost equally objects to the farmer here. The greatest tillage permitted is one third of the arable, which is certainly more than is profitable. After liming, three white crops are taken, two of oats, and a third of barley. If, after the third white crop, the farmer dungs and has a green crop, a fourth white crop is permitted, when the ground is always sown out with red clover and rye-grass, the only foreign grasses propagated. White clover, and the perennial red, are so common in the fields, and rise naturally in such plenty, that the bought seeds of these plants are seldom used. Not much wheat is sown. The soil, though kindly, is light; but that is not the only reason. - The straw of wheat is not used as fodder in this part of the country, though it is in England; and this, to a farmer in these parts, is a great drawback on a crop, as most of the farms can maintain more cattle in the summer, than can be provided with food in the winter: For the same reason, fallowing is little known, grass being valuable, and the fields abundantly clean, since the corns were dressed with fans, a practice equally profitable and universal.

To the credit of this country, this simple and most useful machine (the fan) was, a few years ago, brought to perfection by two natives of this neighbourhood. Without this aid, farmers might still have been obliged to place their barns in the most awkward and inconvenient situation, from the view of obtaining wind for winnowing. Even then the corn often rotted in the barn; and fields remained unsown, because the air was calm, or the wind unsuitable, or accompanied by rain or snow. Servants are now set to winnow the corns, in the fore part of the winter night, when they were usually straggling, or unprofitably employed. Their health is no longer exposed in this part of their duty; and, in a word, the date of the corn trade, in this country, seems to coincide with the period when the fan was introduced. It is with no bad intention, that we mention the names of the inventors, to whom the world has been more indebted than to thousands of renowned empyrics in politics, law, divinity, physic, etc. The said ingenious mechanics were Mr Muir, joiner in Dumfries, and Mr Kinghorn, miller of the town's mills, both dead several years ago.

From the inequality on the surface of the ground, the watering of land, by the numerous wells and rivulets, is easy; but of late the practice was not much followed, where other manures can easily be had, and it is believed to render the soil thin and gravely, and to exhaust it so, that hardly any other improvement is an effectual restorative. Of commons, we have not one foot. Ring fences (stone dykes) around every farm, have been erected long ago, and even sub-divisions; but the latter are quite too large, especially for the turnip husbandry. Indeed, of late, potatoes, which are exported in great quantities to England, to Glasgow, etc., have superseded almost every other fallow or green crop. The price is from 1s. to 1s. 6d. per cwt. as the season is plenteous. The implements of agriculture are in every respect the same with those in the north of England; and as the intercourse with Whitehaven, and the other towns on the opposite side of the Solway Frith, is daily, it is believed the utensils of husbandry are just as well made here as anywhere else, and better accommodated to the state and situation of the ground, than could be done by a stranger tradesman. No oxen are used for draught, probably owing to the temptation people have to selling those home-bred horses, that are good, to the English, and to jockeys in general. The breeding of black cattle, too, is followed by every farmer, as far as the nature of things will permit.

Prices of Labour, Improvements, etc.

The wages for servants are, for lot men, as they are called, or cottagers, about £14 per annum; but the articles of maintenance furnished are, perhaps, estimated in Galloway, £2 or £3 a year lower that in Lothian, and some other counties in Scotland. Labourers, by the day, get from 1s. 2d. to 1s. 4d. Farm houses are generally very good, as well as offices. In a word, the continual repair of drovers, cattle-dealers, and even labourers, to England, and the spirit of improvement that has prevailed in this country for these 20 years past, has made the farming of these parts nearly equal to what it is in the southern part of the island, in all ordinary matters, and due regard being had to the means of the inhabitants of the different countries. As a test of the happy consequences, 4 or 5 of the best farms in Buittle, which, about the year 1747, were rented at £200 Scotch, or 40 merks each, now pay, (or would pay if out of lease), £230 a piece, whilst the tenants would live incomparably better than their predecessors. One prejudice seems much to obstruct the success of the farmer in this part of the world - it is that of sowing too late. The fields, where the corns shaken by violent winds, if early ploughed, have been known to yield a respectable crop in the following season, in spite of the rigours of winter; and though constant experience declares, that the oats, sown in the beginning of February, afford the most profitable return, still the sowing of grain is delayed till the middle of March; nor is the seed barley committed to the ground sooner that the middle or latter end of April. The harvest, as might be expected, corresponds with the seed time. Seldom does it begin before the middle of September, and it is often later, as the soil and exposure of the ground, or as the nature of the season, may decide.


In farming, as in most other concerns, a man's exertions depend very much on the prudence of those principles, in which his endeavours originate. In Galloway, and perhaps elsewhere, on maxim seems for ages fettered the hands of industry. The farmer reasoned thus with himself:- "My forefathers and I have had this present profession, in which I am now settled, by successive leases of 7 years, or less, for ages. The rent has been still the same; but to keep it from rising, we have not only omitted every improvement, but, in many instances, we have, to our own detriment, been obliged to labour for the depreciation of the subject. This is the consummate prudence of the farmer; and departing from the maxim, every farmer may expect to find his ruin, either in the avarice of the laird, or in the envy of his neighbour; as the latter will offer, and the former cheerfully receive, whatever any parcel of ground can afford, let it be improved at whose cost, or by whose industry, it may be". Two methods of refuting this dangerous maxim seem to have been adopted in England. The one is, by leasing the ground from year to year, and stipulating, annually, what improvement is to be made, and whether at the cost of the landlord or tenant. The mode of farming is thus too fixed. The other is, that of granting leases for lives, or for a great number of years, upon fines, etc., so that the interest of the tenant in his position becomes greater than that of the proprietor. In this part of the world, a medium has been sought. Few leases are granted for less than 19 years; and it is now, indeed, not so much the question with a tenant, whether his industry will redound ultimately to the benefit of his landlord, or of a succeeding tenant, as whether it will pay him, (the present possessor), in conformity to his skill and outlay. -- "If the farm (now reasons the latter) is worth £10 a year more, at the end of my lease, I may just as well give that for it, as for any other of equal value." After all, it is probable that longer leases than those of 19 years would be favourable to permanent improvements, such as hedges, etc., and it must be owned, that as the lease draws near a close, the tenant is often found comporting himself, as if under a conviction that he inhabited hostile ground. To say the truth, however, that narrowness of mind, or aristocratical pride, which adjusted every matter of lease, to the visible purpose of keeping the tenants in abject dependence upon their landlords, has of late been put very much to the blush. Through all Galloway, as well as in Buittle parish, a prodigious alteration took place in landed property, through the American war, and the scarce less deplorable concerns of the Douglas and Heron Bank. Most of the estates brought to sale in this country, were purchases by natives of it - men acquainted with the world, and in affluent circumstances. These knew better things than to ruin themselves with Baillie-work, (what is called Boon-days in England), to put their importance on the number of kain hens paid them by ragged cottagers; or to recommend their own affability, by encouraging idleness and intoxication, in ale-house conventions. The permanent part of the improvements, necessary on the estates, they took upon themselves;- their tenants were prudently chosen; the leases they gave were of considerable length; and, to give tenants more confidence and spirit, it is stipulated with several, that they shall be allowed to resign, on a year's warning, if times are distressing, provided they have not committed a waste, or done considerable detriment upon their respective farms.


Before saying more of other concerns, it may be fit to mention the population of the parish, and some matters connected with it. To save words, and communicate information as readily as possible, recourse is had to figures.

Population in 1755, as returned to Dr Webster


Ditto in 1793





Religious Persuasions



Members of the Established Church









Roman Catholics
















AVERAGES for three years preceding 1793





Average of marriages for 5 years



Persons under 10 years of age


Persons between 10 and 20


Persons between 20 and 50


Persons between 50 and 70


Persons between 70 and 100





Proprietors of land






Public-house Keepers








Salary of Principal Schoolmaster




Ditto of the second, with bed, board and washing




Scholars in principal school




Ditto in second school




Prisoners in debt




Ditto, for alleged murder, since 1790


Household servants



Labouring servants and cottagers














Black Cattle








Farm houses rebuilt within the last 10 years


Cottages rebuilt within the last 10 years


Valued rent in Scotch money


Real rent in Sterling


Minister's stipend



The parish of Buittle has no commerce, except what consists of the exportation of barley, oats, potatoes, etc. to England and Glasgow, and the sending of black cattle to English markets. After every accession of agricultural and mechanical knowledge, it is a question but the old observation on Galloway, and especially this part of it, may hold good, "Universa pecoris quam frumenti fertilior". More especially of late, many creditable people have contended, that the improvements of the breed of sheep, and the growth of wool, would render this country more valuable to all concerned, than ever it has been hertofore; perhaps it might here be equally tedious and impertinent to enhance the idea.

Roads, Woods, etc.

The roads are tolerable, rather because the soil is hard and dry, than because the management of them hitherto has been judicious, or the expenditures regarding them liberal. There is not one village in all the parish, nor is there any manufacture. Indeed, for many years past, the want of fuel seems to have acted as a prohibition respecting both. Even the vestiges of some villages, of which we read in the charters of some estates, cannot now be discerned. Of wood there may be growing, and even fit for cutting, at this day, to the value of £10,000 and the late plantations abundantly the care and industry of the owners. Ash and oak are the trees most common; - the larix is the favourite plant of the day; but its rapid and towering growth renders it incommodious to be interspersed in plantations. It seems thus to be threatened with exile to the tops of hills. Even there, few of the species fail.


Knowledge, as to both its state and extent, is as respectable in Buittle as could well be supposed, whilst the opportunities of acquiring it are considered. There is a public school, to which most of the children attending it travel some 2, some 3 miles. The schoolmaster is chosen from year to year, as it is called, and the only security for his salary of £10 is the good will of the heritors. There is also a cheaper school, having a stipend of £3 per annum: Thus the whole funds of public instruction, for the rising generation, for the whole parish of Buittle, are £13 Sterling! - What can be the meaning of this parsimoney? Is it from the learned, the well informed, the religious, - or is it from the ignorant, "the mole-ey'd, half discerning," and consequently unprincipled, that civil society just now stands in dread? - From some circumstances, one would think it was from the former.


Buittle has no poor's rate, in consequence few poor, and no travelling beggars. The collections in the church, joined to the prudent charity of well disposed persons, afford abundant supply to those really in need. - Vagabond beggars, the scum of cities, who beg half-a-crown a day to drink it at night, are pretty numerous, and often troublesome; nor is the law of the land very strictly executed, in repressing these pests of society. Indeed, the failure of manufacturers at present, affords them too good an excuse for their idleness.


It is now the disposition of the world, (perhaps it may not decrease), rather to know how things are, than how they have been. Were it proper to swell a work of usefulness, and to load the page of profitable information with urns, coins, calcined bones, unfashionable implements of slaughter, and other precious relics, over which the conjectural tribe of antiquaries rejoice and lament, we might mention numerous discoveries of the kind made hereabouts. On such matters few words shall be used. - The Castle of Buittle is assuredly the most considerable remain of antiquity in the parish. Some have affirmed, that it was formerly called the Castle of Knare, Nare, or Bar-nare, and was the chief residence of the Reguli of Galloway. An adjoining hill, named Craig-nair, gives some weight to this supposition. Yet when we recollect, how large a division of the British island once bore the name of Gallovidia, or the province of Galwalenses, (Strath Clyde), and that several places in this great extent of country, both from name and situation, may as probably have been the princely residence, as the Castle of Buittle - there is reason for our leaving those who think themselves competent, and interested in this matter, to decide. Country clergymen may well be excused, for ignorance in concerns very little allied to the success of their labours. Certain it is, however, that the ruins of Buittle Castle denote it to have been a place of strength, and even magnificence. It now belongs, with its precincts, as contained in the charter, to Mr Murray of Broughton, the representative of the Caillie family. The vaults and ditches of Buittle Castle, are all that remain of this proud structure. They have baffled the ravages of time for several centuries, and may for several more. The vaults are covered with large ash trees; and into these subterraneous parts of the Castle, no person has even penetrated, though it might be done with ease and safety, probably with much gratification to curiosity. - Besides the Castle of Buittle. the only other remembrance of ages equally rude and remote, which shall be mentioned here, is one of those ruins, commonly called vitrified forts. Vestiges of such buildings are not uncommon in the lower parts of Galloway, and the one now alluded to stands on the north west border of Buittle parish, within the farm called Castle-Gower, which lies along the march of Kelton.

Climate and Character.

As the soil of Buittle is in general dry, as the air of it is good, and the tract of country it comprehends warm, good health and length of days are correspondent to those aids of both. "Medicina summa medicamentis non uti." With this most important maxim of physic, the inhabitants of Buittle are well acquainted, without consulting antiquity. There is a surgeon about a mile from the border of the parish, and an attorney at nearly the same distance. Either, or both of them, will come if sent for, but this is as seldom as possible. Indeed it is just rather than complimentary, to say, that the morals of the inhabitants of this parish, as seldom need the interference of law, as their health does the aids of a physic. Religion is still reverenced, and they esteem a Christian Church the best temple of reason. To mention politics might be extraneous and petulant, rather than serviceable to the work for which this article is designed, were it not that it becomes every good citizen, at a time like the present, to omit nothing that may in any wise increase public confidence, or allay capricious innovation. Independent in their sentiments, and in their circumstances, the people of Buittle, (like many of the country to which they belong) seem rather so besotted as to imagine, that any human form of government is without infirmity, nor so infatuated as to believe, that every thing is wrong in our own, and that reformation must be sought in anarchy. The apostles of Mr Paine seemed at one time assiduous, and his works, (and works of less merit too), were as common as the church catechism. They are now forgotten. One idea has of late more affected the public mind. That spirit of unity and indivisibility, that is, arrogance and depredation, which has so fatally attracted the rabble of Paris, may prevail in Edinburgh or Glasgow: - Should that be the case, the peaceable and unarmed inhabitants of the country know what awaits them. On this principle, it is believed, more national guards might be enlisted in this quarter in one day, than all the declamations against regal tyranny, or parliamentary corruption, could assemble in a twelvemonth. The lowering the freehold qualification, and the abrogating or limiting the law of patronage, have been the ultimatum of proposed reformation in this country.


If these and the like are speculative and imaginary grievances, we have but few real ones to complain of. Instances, however, of this kind may be given. That PENTE of the waters, (as the modern naturalist say), which is manifested by the retreat of the sea on every western coast, is abundantly remarkable on the shores of the Solway Frith. Many acres there, which were barren land 30 years ago, are now good pasture land; and in the middle of this arm of the sea, banks and mountains are daily increasing in size, so that they will soon be islands, and will soon be arable. The consequent shallowness of the Frith, and of the river Urr, renders it therefore impossible, that the navigation of the Urr can be carried on by vessels much above 50 tons burden; and these can only find access at the usual landing places, (and the most useful), at spring tides. Now, as the law stands, the fees, etc., of the custom-house, are as high for a vessel of 50 tons as for one of 500, and as high for a boat of 5 tons, as for a sloop of 50. In a few years, however, the trade of this river must be carried on, perhaps, by vessels as small, or smaller than any we have mentioned; and the proportioning of custom-house fees, and the shortening of delays incident or usual there, will then be objects of correspondent magnitude. But the Statistical Account is not meant as a magazine of grievances. May providence avert greater than we have felt, perhaps than we have imagined!

The author of this article. having thus noticed every thing in the parish, where he does his duty, that he conceives helpful to public utility, and connected with the patriotic work he would wish to support, claims from the reader that indulgence, in respect of literary endowment, which may well be looked for, by one who appears in print, from no view of profit or praise, but (like many reverend gentlemen) from compulsion. Minus aptus acutis naribus - If it is now accepted, he hopes it may be a while before he has occasion to repeat the above apology. Devoid of those brilliant talents, and ill supported by that profound erudition, which Doctors, Chaplains, and Almoners only possess, the humble parson of Buittle doubts if he has persuaded the world, that in his humble parish, "all is for the best." - Happy should he be, in believing, that the sense of the public admitted things to be tolerable.