7 SEPTEMBER 1850, Page 1


Ilomtoon PALACE was fitted up, people observe, to afford the Queen two nights' lodging ; for her stay was no longer, and she quitted Edinburgh without either drawing-room or levee. In the _course of her sojourn, the successor of Elizabeth visited the apartments of Mary Queen of Scots, preserving a strict incognito, for the better because more free contemplation. What thoughts might rush across the royal brain P—the ill fate of the thought- less woman, wandering among fanatics and rude soldiers whose coarseness merged in fanaticism the hated husband, the imbecile progeny—link between the Victoria of the nineteenth and the glorious Elizabeth of the sixteenth century ! Many a material for a royal sermon—even the apocryphal stain of blood, whose im- puted indelibility provoked the English bagman's indignation on behalf Of his forbidden "detergent elixir." No detergent elixir can cleanse the blot from that page of bigotry and cruelty ; but a healthy faith can draw flowers of consolation even from the ground fertilized with blood.

Before the royal lady had rapt herself from the eyes of the loyal Edinburghers, Prince Albert was seen in his duty as aesthetical commissioner-general, laying the first stone of the new Scottish National Gallery on the Mound, and delivering one of his neat oral oompositions—which always contain some sterling thought— on the independent condition of the useful arts in Scotland at this day as compared with the time of the Union, and the growing in- fluence of the fine arts. And so from art in Mode= Athens to nature at Balmoral