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OF THE LATE
REV. ROBERT POLLOK, A. M.
"THE COURSE OF TIME.”
The following little Narrative, a large impression of which was sold, when its author was unknown, has now additional claims on the public, as being the production of the Rev. ROBERT POLLOK, the author of the justly celebrated poem, THE COURSE OF Time. The untimely death of this highly gifted man, who fell a victim to disease last summer, in the flower of his youth, after he had finished a work which has given him claims to immortality, and afforded indications of a genius, which, had he lived, would
have still farther increased his reputation in the literary world, has excited an interest in the public mind, not less merited than the sympathy which is connected with his name. And it is honorable to his countrymen that they have appreciated his merit, though he himself lived not to receive their applause; and it is no less consoling to his friends to know, that he has not died unlamented, "unnoticed and unknown."
It would have been desirable had we been able to prefix to this little work a regular biographical notice of Mr. Pollok's life. Circumstances, however, render this for the present impossible; but it is a want which we may be enabled to supply in a future edition. In the meantime we may observe, that Mr. Pollok was born at Eaglesham, Ayreshire, in the year 1799. He had the happiness to have parents who, while engaged in agricultural occupations, adorn their profession by their worth and respectability. In the romantic scenes of his native district, which he himself so beautifully
describes in his splendid poem, he first caught the inspiration of the muse. Beholding nature with the eye of an enthusiast from his earliest years, the associations of time and place arose before him, and his brilliant imagination enabled him to observe and to impress on his mind nature's matchless works. While in boyhood, he possessed the reflection of mature years; and he lived not in the frivolities of youth, but in the cultivation of those mental powers which were to raise him to eminence as a man of talent and a poet.
Mr. Pollok was educated at the University of Glasgow; and after a regular philosophical course in that distinguished seminary, he took his degree of Master of Arts. While attending the University, though perhaps he did not make that brilliant display which ensures for many students the ephemeral honors of a day, he stood high in the estimation of his teachers, and took his place among the most distinguished of his fellowstudents. His views were directed to the
church, and especially to that portion of it, the United Secession Church, in which he had been educated, and of which his relations were members. Accordingly, he became a student of theology in the seminary of that numerous body, under the Rev. Dr. Dick of Glasgow. But while he thus looked forward to the ministry of his own communion, he also attended the theological lectures of the Established Church in the University of Glasgow, under the excellent and amiable professor, Dr. Macgill. His prescribed discourses in the divinity hall invariably secured for him the approbation of his teacher; and after the usual attendance of five years, in the spring of 1827, he was admitted by the United Associate Presbytery of Edinburgh, a licentiate of the Secession Church, along with a brother, who is at present employed in fulfilling the appointments of the Synod.
The first public discourse which Mr. Pollok delivered, after becoming a licentiate, was in Rose Street chapel, Edinburgh,