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Chronicles of the Canongate

Chronicles of the Canongate by Walter Scott
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This is the inclusive title for a collection of Walter Scott's longish short-stories. This volume contains "The Highland Widow" and "The Two Drovers". Scott finally completed the Chronicles, which appeared in two volumes, on September 21st 1827.

The Highland Widow is the short tragic tale of a the widow of MacTavish Mhor, one of the last of the Highland caterans, killed by Hanoverians after the Rebellion of 1745. The widow lives with her son, her only child, in the mountains. The son chooses to enlist for active service in a regiment going to America. Resentful at this decision, the widow tricks her son into outstaying his leave by way of a sleeping potion before inciting him to kill the Cameronian sergeant who comes to arrest him. The son is executed as a deserter and a murderer; his mother spends her remaining days in misery and remorse before disappearing to die where nobody can see her.

The Two Drovers is designed to illustrate the character of the Highlanders. Robin Oig M'Combich, a Highland drover, sets out for England with some cattle along with his friend Harry Wakefield, a Yorkshire Rover. When they reach Cumberland, a dispute arises between the two men over accommodation for the cattle that evening. Harry continues the quarrel in an inn where the locals join in insulting the Highlander and ends up being stabbed to death by Robin, who then gives himself up in order to give his life for the life he took.

Electric Book Company; January 1999
284 pages; ISBN 9781598756326
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Title: Chronicles of the Canongate
Author: Walter Scott
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