<div0 type=chapter n=I>
<p>(Hosts have been known at that dread sound to yield,
and, Douglas dead, his name hath won the field.
It was at the close of an early spring day, when nature, in a
cold province of Scotland, was reviving from her winter's sleep,
and the air at least, though not the vegetation, gave promise of
an abatement of the rigour of the season, that two travellers,
whose appearance at that early period sufficiently announced
their wandering character, which, in general, secured a free
passage even through a dangerous country, were seen coming
from the south-westward, within a few miles of the Castle of
Douglas, and seemed to be holding their course in the direction
of the river of that name, whose dale afforded a species of
approach to that me . . .