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obscure, and the shell thin; when it was
split along the back by the animal, and
disappeared. Gradually the calcifying
processes of the mantle formed a new and
larger shell, which it covered with a fresher
enamel and touched with surpassing beauty.

Serpula, sabella, and cyprea lead us down
the beach. The waves strew the high-tide
line with their remains, while their lives were
passed beneath the line of low tide. As we
descend the beach of chalk rocks, the colours
which meet the eyes change visibly from
green, through brown and purple, to red.
When the low-water mark is only the limit
of an ordinary tide, a glimpse is obtained
(but rarely) of the red shore. When,
however, the neap tides of spring or autumn lay
the upper edge of it bare, a glimpse of it
may sometimes be caught, and the glimpse
will never be forgotten.

Dulse and Irish moss, common and well-
known plants, indicate the whereabout of
the purple shore. Dulse is generally found in
the transition region between the brown and
purple zones. Dulse is called Iridea edulis,
because it is eatable, and because some
species of it reflect light prismatically, like the
iris. Coast-folks on the south-west of
England, the west of Ireland, and the east of
Scotland, eat dulse. The colour is dark brown
purple. When at all reddish they are not
good to eat. The blade is flat and expanded,
and more fleshy than gelatinous, being
composed of densely interwoven fibres running
lengthwise. The shape of the blade is egg-
like, tapering into a short stem towards the
base. The root is a spread disk, from which
spring several blades.

The writers on sea-plants say the fronds of
Iridea edulis are occasionally eaten by the
poor, either raw or fried. Stackhouse says,
the fishermen of the south-west of England
eat it after they have pinched it between red-
hot irons, when it is said to taste like roasted
oysters. Dulse is a regular relish on the
tables of all ranks in Aberdeen, my native
town. When I was a boy, from half-a-dozen
to a dozen dulse-wives, according to the
season, used to sit every morning on the
paving stones of the Castlegate selling dulse.
When I think of them, the beautiful granite
city, seated at the mouth of the Dee, comes
before me like a picture. The Castlegate
a large, oblong square formed of granite
houses of all ages and all styleswas a
wonderful old place in those days, ere the
nineteenth century had eclipsed the middle ages
in the city of Bon Accord.

Recollections crowd upon me when I ought
to be thinking only of the dulse-wives. I see
shore-porters dressed in blue cloth, with broad
Scottish bonnets and broader shoulders;
carters standing upright in their carts, while
driving them, and looking ruddy and sleepy;
recruiting sergeants of the Highland
regiments beguiling the country lads; and
ladies, followed by their maids, making
purchases of fish. However, of all the
figures on the Castlegate, none were more
picturesque than the dulse-wives. They sat in
a row on little wooden stools, with their
wicker creels placed before them on the
granite paving stones. Dressed in clean white
mutches, or caps, with silk-handkerchiefs
spread over their breasts, and blue stuff
wrappers and petticoats, the ruddy and sonsie
dulse-women looked the types of health and
strength. Every dulse-wife had a clean white
cloth spread half over the mouth of her creel
at the side furthest from her, and nearest her
customers. The cloth served as a counter on
which the dulse was heaped into the handkerchiefs
of the purchasers. Many a time, when
my whole weekly income was a halfpenny,
a Friday's bawbee, I have expended it on
dulse, in preference to apples, pears,
blackberries, cranberries, strawberries, wild peas,
and sugar-sticks. When I approached, there
used to be quite a competition among the
dulse-wives for my bawbee. The young ones
looked most winning, and the old ones cracked
the best jokes. A young one would say:

"Come to me, bonnie laddie, and I'll gie ye
mair for yer bawbee than any o' them."

An old one would say:

"Come to me, laddie, an I'll tell what like
yer wife will be."

"Ye dinna ken yerself."

"Hoot ayeI ken brawly: she'll hae a head
and feet, an mou', and eyen, and may be a
nose, and will be as auld as me, if she lives
as lang."

"Aye; but ye gie me very little dulse for
my bawbee."

"Aye," replies the honest woman, adding
another handful, "but sic a wife is weel worth
mair siller."

The dulse-wives exploded into laughter,
when the old woman suggested some one like
herself, as the ideal wife which youth is
doomed always to pursue and never to attain.
As the boy retired laughing, but abashed, the
young one would cry:—

"Y'll come to me neist time, laddie
winna ye?"

Dulse is generally eaten raw in Aberdeen.
Raw or toasted with hot irons, or fried, but
especially raw, it seasons oaten or wheaten
bread admirably. The iodine it. contains
makes it an excellent vermifuge. Pepper-
dulseLaurencia pinnatifidais much more
rare and more piquant than Iridea edulis.
At Aberdeen every dulse-wife has ordinarily
a few handfuls of pepper-dulse, half-a-dozen
plants of which she adds when asked, to
every halfpenny worth of dulse. Sometimes
there is one who, being weakly, has nothing
but pepper-dulse, which is less heavy to
carry, and more costly than the common
breakfast relish of the Aberdoniaus.

"Wha'll buy dulse and tang!" is one of the
cries of the fish-wives in the streets of
Edinburgh. "He who eats the dulse of
Guerdie and drinks of the wells of Kildingie,"

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