Nothing, however, could stop him in the performance of what he considered his duty, and, indeed, I believe his eagerness to see his mother overpowered every other feeling. It was also a singular circumstance, that, on his return to Edinburgh, after an absence of nearly thirty years, he should be obliged to pass through it almost without stopping; yet such was the case, as we found, on our arrival at the inn, that a packet was just about to sail for London, and that if we did not avail ourselves of it we should be compelled to wait several days. We, therefore, hurried down to the pier, and finding that the captain of the vessel was just going on board, we hired a boat, and were, luckily, in time to save our passage. We had a very quick voyage, and arrived at Bays-water about half an hour after the letter we had sent from Glasgow to announce that we were coming. Mr. Loudon's mother was so delighted to see her son, that she seemed partially to revive; so much, indeed, that we had hopes of her recovery.

Nature, however, was too far exhausted, and she died about six weeks after our return, in October, 1831.

In 1832, Mr. Loudon commenced his Encyclopoedia of Cottage, Farm, and Villa Architecture, which was the first work he ever published on his own account, and in which I was his sole amanuensis, though he had several draughtsmen. The labor that attended this work was immense; and for several months he and I used to sit up the greater part of every night, never having more than four hours' sleep, and drinking strong coffee to keep ourselves awake. The First Additional Supplement to the Hortus Britannicus was also prepared and published in 1832.

The great success of the Cottage Architecture, which is perhaps the best and most useful of all Mr. Loudon's works, tempted him to publish the Arboretum Britannicum also on his own account. He had long intended to write a work on the hardy trees of Great Britain; but he did not contemplate the expenses which he should incur by so doing. When, however, the Arboretum was once begun, he found it was impossible to compress it into the limits originally intended; and, in his determination to make the work as perfect as possible, he involved himself in the difficulties which hastened his death. Notwithstanding the immense labor attending the Arboretum, which was published in monthly numbers, Mr. Loudon, in March, 1834, began the Architectural Magazine, the first periodical devoted exclusively to architecture, though, like the Magazine of Natural History and the Gardener's Magazine, it only served as a pioneer to clear the way for others, which afterwards followed in the same course with much greater success.

From the year 1833 to midsummer, 1838, Mr. Loudon underwent the most extraordinary exertions both of mind and body. Having resolved that all the drawings of trees for the Arboretum should be made from nature, he had seven artists constantly employed, and he was frequently in the open air with them from his breakfast at seven in the morning till he came home to dinner at eight in the evening, having remained the whole of that time without taking the slightest refreshment, and generally without even sitting down. After dinner, he resumed the literary part of the work, and continued writing, with me as his amanuensis, till two or three o'clock in the morning. His constitution was naturally very strong, but it was impossible for any human powers to bear, for any lengthened period, the fatigue he underwent. In 1838, he began the Suburban Gardener, which was also published in monthly numbers, so that he had five monthly works going on at the same time. He soon found, however, that three monthly works, besides the Arboretum, were as much as his health would permit him to undertake the management of, and he disposed of the Magazine of Natural History to Mr. Charlesworth. In 1838, he also gave up the Architectural Magazine, and at midsummer, in that year, he finished the Arboretum Britannicum. He was now in circumstances that would have discouraged almost any person but himself.

His health was very seriously injured, partly by what was supposed to be a liver complaint, and partly by an enormous swelling in his right knee, which some of the most eminent medical men in London supposed to be produced by a disease in the bone. In addition to the large sums in ready money he had paid to the artists and other persons employed during the progress of the Arboretum, he found, at its conclusion, that he owed ten thousand pounds to the printer, the stationer, and the wood engraver, who had been employed on that work. His creditors, however, did not press him for their money, but gave him a chance of reaping the benefit of his labors at some future time, by consenting to wait till they were paid by the sale of the Arboretum and the Cottage Architecture, upon condition that he placed these works in the hands of Messrs. Longman, to hold for the creditors till the debt was paid.

Notwithstanding the state of his knee, which was now such that he was unable to walk without assistance, immediately on the completion of the Arboretum he arranged and published his Hortus Lignosus Londinensis; and in the last number of the Suburban Gardener, which was finished about this time, he informed the public that he intended to resume his profession of landscape-gardener, and that he would not only go out, but give advice at home, on any plans that might be sent to him. To us, who saw the state of his health, this intimation gave the greatest pain, and we determined to do everything in our power to prevent the necessity of his exerting himself. Two of his sisters learned wood engraving, and I, having acquired some knowledge of plants and gardens during the eight years I had acted as his amanuensis, began to write books on those subjects myself. In the mean time, he grew so much worse, that we had very little hope of his recovery, till he placed himself under the care of William Lawrence, Esq., when that eminent surgeon took a different view of the case from what had been before entertained, and, by his mode of treatment, rapidly restored my husband to health.