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A Sketch of Scottish Literature from the Earliest Times 

■ — IV///. APIlwrailh ------ 5 

Robert Burns, Burgess of Sanquhar, and some of his 

Brother Freemen — Tom Wilson - - - - 34 
Burns Interpreted in the light of his own times — Andrew 

M^Caliiiin -------- 44 

The First Edition and its recent Reproduction — Editor 72 

" Honest Allan " — Edward Pinnington - - - 78 

Robert Burns— yi?/^;/ Hose - - - - - 89 

Highland Mary : A Summation — Editor - 90 

Chair of Scottish History - - - - - - 101 

The Heroine of "Sweet Afton "— Z^aw^ Z. Murdoch - 104 
Death of Mrs Sarah Burns Hutchinson, Grand-daughter 

of the Poet— y! Leiper Gemmiil - - - 106 

Foreign Tributes to Burns— ^. C. White - - 113 

Reviews - - - - - - - - - i 19 

Indexes of Illustrations in Annual Burns Chronicle- - 124 

Club Notes - - - - - - 129 

Notes and Queries ------ 147 

Annual Meeting of Federation - - 163 

Club Directory - - - - ' *7^ 


The sustained success of the Chronicle, since the responsibiMty 
of its publication was taken over by the Federation, has been so 
gratifying as to warrant the conckision that its usefulness could 
be still further increased through the C^lubs taking a more active 
interest in its management, and by increasing the amount of the 
guarantee fund which represents the measure of that interest. 

In the present issue more space has been allotted to "Notes 
and Queries," which, for unavoidable reasons, had fallen into 
arrear. We again thank all who have assisted us, and trust the 
present issue will meet with approval. 



Benrig, Kii.maurs, 

December 22nd, 1909. 




IN some respects Dr Grainger may scarcely be reckoned a 
poet of sufficient merit with which to begin a chapter which 
must necessarily include writers of infinitely greater powers. 
Grainger's literary associations, however, were extensive, and his 
poetry and translations appealed not only to his own countrymen, 
but to a much wider circle. Indeed, his works 
Ur Grainger, ^^^^^^ ^j- g^j^cient merit to secure him admission 
'^ ' into the fellowship of that distinguished brother- 
hood of wits, poets, and philosophers over which Dr Samuel 
Johnson was in the habit of presiding. James Grainger was born 
at Dunse, m Berwickshire, in 1724. By birth and education he 
was a Scotsman ; but, as his name indicates, he was of English 
descent. His father, John Grainger, Esq., was once the owner of 
Houghton Hall, Cumberlandshire ; but owing to unsuccessful 
speculations in mines he was compelled to sell his estate and 
migrate to Scotland, where he secured a situation in the Excise, 
and was stationed at Dunse when our author was born. 

When a mere youth he lost his father, but by the generosity 
of his elder brother, who had a good position as a writing-master 
in Edinburgh, he was sent to the University of that city, where he 
completed his education, and finally qualified in medicine. By 
the time he attained his majority he was appointed surgeon to a 
Regiment of Foot, and during the Rebellion of 1745 saw some 
active service ; subsequently going to Germany, where he dis- 

tinguished himself by his devotion to duty. When the peace of 
Aixla-Chapelle was concluded in 1748, (Irainger severed his 
connection with the army and returned to Edinburgh, where the 
degree of M.D. was conferred upon him. He afterwards went to 
London, where he had a prolonged struggle with adverse circum- 
stances, which entailed many hardships. To his credit be it said 
that he maintained a brave fight, turning his hand to anything to 
earn an honest penny, though it is insinuated by Smollett that he 
had to engage in the meanest literary work among the hacks of 
Grub Street. Smollett's testimony, however, must be taken 
cum gr a no salis, as he had a strong prejudice against Grainger on 
account of his ability and learning, and Smollett in his day was 
something of a literary autocrat. 

The first publication Grainger issued with his real name 
attached was a volume written in Latin, entitled " Historia Febris : 
anomalcB Bahivcs, annorum 1746, 1747, 1748, &c." ; but it did 
not attract the attention it deserved, for the reason that most of 
his observations had been anticipated by Sir John Pringle, who 
had previously published a work entitled Observations on the 
Diseases of the Army. In his next literary venture he was more 
fortunate, it being estimated highly both by the critics and the 
public. " An Ode on Solitude," as it was called, first 
appeared in Dodsley's Collection, published in 1755, and by this 
composition Grainger's fame assumed some importance. For one 
thing, it secured him a position among the leading literary lights 
of London society, which resulted in his appointment as tutor to a 
young gentleman of fortune. His services were so well appreci- 
ated that when parting from this gentleman he settled upon him 
an annuity for life. This did not interfere with his productive 
activity, for in 1758 he published, in two volumes, a translation of 
the Elegies of Tibu/tus, and also the poems of Sulpicia, with the 
original text, and notes critical and explanatory. This work was 
the subject of a bitter attack in the Critical Review, then under 
the direction of Smollett. The two great rival monthlies published 
at the time were the Critical Revieiv and the Monthly Revietv, 
and their attitude towards each other was distinguished by the 

bitterest and most acrimonious spirit possible in the competition 
•of letters. Amongst the writers to the Critical Review there was a 
suspicion that Grainger was connected in some way with the 
Monthly Review. This, combined with Smollett's jealousy of 
Crainger's talents, prompted the attack and neutralised its bitter- 
ness. Grainger, fired with indignation, wrote an open letter to 
Tobias Smollett, in which he successfully exposed the malice and 
misrepresentation of the critical- article in his periodical. Grainger 
unwisely pursued his enemy beyond the point of honourable 
victory, for he was no match for Smollett in vituperation and 
vulgar abuse. The following is an example of Smollett's attack : — ■ 
"One of the owls belonging to the proprietor of the Monthly 
Review, which answers to the name of Grainger, hath suddenly 
broken from his mew, where he used to hoot in darkness and 
peace, and now screeches openly in the face of day. We shall 
take the first opportunity to chastise this troublesome owl and 
drive him back to his original obscurity." In his "Ode to 
Solitude," Grainger mentions the owl in the following random 
allusion : — 

" Where the owl, still hooting, sits." 

The assumption is that this is the line that beguiled Smollett 
into the foregoing poor attempt at wit, which is too obvious to 
conceal the bitterness and scorn he cherished for his rival. By 
this time, however, the reading public had become disgusted with 
the vulgar and aggressive criticism in which Smollett and his 
myrmidons indulged towards almost every new aspirant in litera- 
ture, and the censures of the Critical Review left the reputation 
of Grainger unhurt. Not only did the translations of Tibullus 
and Sulpicia secure general admiration in the author's own day, 
but anyone who takes the trouble to compare the translations 
of Eton, Otway, and Hammond with Grainger's will be influenced 
in Grainger's favour, though perhaps not in entire agreement with 
the estimate of his contemporary critics. 

Book IV. of the Translations of Tibullus is composed of 
elegies assigned to Sulpicia and Cerinthus, of which the following 
lines may be given as a specimen : — 

*' If from the botloiii of my love-sick heart, 
Of last night's coyness I do not repent, 
May I no more your tender anguish hear, 
No longer see you shed th' impassioned tear ; 
Vou grasp"d my knees, and yet to let you part — 
Oh, night — more happy with Cerinthus spent ! 
My flame with coyness to conceal I thought, 
But this concealment was too dearly bought." 

The only poetical work by Sulpicia of which a correct critical 
judgment can approve is entitled Sulpicke Satira, comprising about 
seventy hexameters, believed to have been written after the exile 
of the Philosophers by Domitian in 94 a.d. Moreover, it is 
supposed that both the third and fourth books of Tibullus are 
the works of inferior poets, and with which neither Tibullus nor 
Sulpicia had much to do. Almost immediately after the publica- 
tion of Tilnillus, Dr Grainger was induced to accept an appoint- 
ment in the island of St. Christopher, where he married one of 
the daughters of the Governor, which alliance was of great 
advantage to him professionally. In 1763, after peace was pro- 
claimed, Grainger returned to England, where he remained 
nearly two years, bringing with him a poem, designated "The Sugar 
Cane," written during his stay in the West Indies. The poem was 
read from the manuscript at the house of Sir Joshua Reynolds, 
where the title and various allusions in the poem were a source of 
much amusement to the wits there assembled. It was generally 
approved, however, and he was induced to publish it in a quarto 
volume in 1764. While in England, Grainger supplied Dr Percy 
with the ballad " Bryan and Pereene," which was published in 
the first volume of Reliques of English Poetry. The ballad was 
founded on a real incident which happened in the island of St. 
Christopher, and is of a most touching and romantic character. 

In 1765 Grainger returned to St. Christopher, and resumed 
his medical practice, but only for a brief period. He died of 
fever at Basse-Terre two years afterwards, in the forty-third year of 
his age. Piy all who knew him he was highly esteemed, both as 
a man and an author. Dr Percy says of him, that " he was not 
only a man of genius and learning, but had many excellent 
virtues, being one of the most generous, friendly, and benevolent 

men he ever knew." His poetry has been rather over than under- 
estimated, which, perhaps, might be accounted for by his fasci- 
nating personality. Plis " Ode on SoHtude " is an imitation, and 
a successful one, of Milton's " Allegro " and " Penseroso," and 
has generally been regarded as his ablest production. Finally, 
his works were edited and published by Dr Anderson. In addi- 
tion to the pieces already alluded to, " Translations from Ovid," 
" Heroic Epistles," and a " Fragment of Capua : A Tragedy " 
which he left in manuscript, were also included in Dr Anderson's 

In Caleb Whitefoord, 1 734-1810, we have a man who was 
more distinguished in his own day for his social qualities than his 

literary achievements, although, by a little 
Caleb Whitefoord, ^^^^ assiduous cultivation of his natural gifts 
1734-1810. ^ 

he would assuredly have left a greater reputa- 
tion. The Whitefoord Papers^ edited by Professor Hewins, and 
pubished by the Clarendon Press in 189S, shows the wide range 
of Caleb Whitefoord's literary and artistic associations, comprising, 
as they did, such men as Dr Johnson, Sir Joshua Reynolds, Gold- 
smith, Garrick, Foote, Benjamin Franklin, and many other 
celebrities of the day. He was the only son of Colonel Charles 
Whitefoord of the Fifth Regiment of Foot, and was born at Edin- 
burgh in 1734. At an early age he attended James Mundell's 
school, where, among his fellow-scholars, were the Earl of Buchan, 
Lord Balmuto, and Dr Andrew Hunter. In March, 1748, he 
matriculated at the University of Edinburgh, where he rapidly 
became distinguished for his knowledge of classical literature. 
The intention of Caleb's father was that his son should enter the 
Church, but as he showed a strong dislike to the clerical profes- 
sion the idea was abandoned, and he was sent to London and 
placed in the counting-house of Archibald Stewart, a wine 
merchant in a large way of business. While in this situation his 
father died, leaving to Caleb and his sister the greater portion of 
his fortune. With the view of adding to his knowledge and 
■experience of the world Caleb went to France, where he remained 
two years, after which he returned to England and invested the 


greater portion of his money in the wine trade as partner with 
Thomas Brown. He became a society man, and man of the 
world. In spite of his natural talents for wit, learning, and the 
refined arts, Whitefoord had little or no ambition to employ them 
in the cause of literature. Indeed, had he not made the 
acquaintance of W. Woodfall, the popular journalist and publisher, 
he might never have exercised his pen for the instruction and 
amusement of the public, for which he was so eminently qualified. 
The numerous essays, poems, and epigrams Whitefoord wrote 
were published in the Public Advertiser, the St. James's Chronicle, 
and other periodicals, and were greatly appreciated by the reading 
public. From the moment his contributions left his pen, how- 
ever, they gave him no further concern, and he was quite 
indifferent about the reputation they brought him. For anything 
he cared they would have been lost and forgotten had they not been 
searched out and collected by Almon and Debrett, who thought 
them worthy of a place in the " Foundling Hospital for Wit." 
Among the most interesting papers in the Whitefoord collection 
are " John Croft's Letters to Caleb Whitefoord " and " Anecdotes 
of Laurence Sterne," which he supplied to Croft. Valuable infor- 
mation here reposes which would form important material for a 
Life of that eccentric genius. Another important epistle is from 
Whitefoord to his partner, Thomas Brown, dated from Lisbon, 
where he arrived immediately after the great earthquake in August, 
1756. The description he gives of the disaster to the city is 
graphic and interesting. " There are not three houses," he says, 
" left entire in the whole city of Lisbon, and the one from which 
I write stands like a lame beggar propt up on crutches." There is 
also an interesting letter to Caleb Whitefoord from the ill-starred 
Andrew Erskine, advocating the claims of George Thomson, the 
friend of Robert Burns, who was going to put in execution a plan 
of giving the public the Scottish melodies in a new and superior 
style to what had yet been done. In the course of this letter 
Erskine says— "I have turned poet on the occasion, and have 
wrote seven love-songs for him ; at fifty-two, I'm afraid, we write 
on these subjects more from recollection than our present 


The numerous friends Whitefoord could reckon amongst 
people of nearly every intellectual degree and social status show 
how widely he was known and how much he was appreciated. By 
his wit and good-humoured satire he not only amused and 
instructed his readers, but he was instrumental in delivering the 
daily press from the dulness and insipidity with which it had been 
trammelled and oppressed. His satire partook so much of a 
sportive character that it offended no one, though in less judicious 
hands his power of satire might easily have become a dangerous 
weapon. Adam Smith said of him " that although the Junto of 
wits and authors hated one another heartily, they had all a sincere 
regard for Mr Whitefoord, who, by his conciliatory manners and 
happy adaptation of circumstances, kept his circle together in 
amity and good humour." Whitefoord was a popular member of 
the famous literary Club founded by Dr Johnson, and though he 
cannot be ranked among its ablest members, no one was held in 
higher esteem. From the time he first settled in London, he 
took a deep interest in the political questions of the day, becoming 
a convert to American Independence. He acted as secretary to 
Lord St. Helens, the Minister entrusted to negotiate treaties of 
peace with the United States. Several of the treaties drawn up at 
this juncture on American affairs are in the handwriting of Caleb 
Whitefoord. Withdrawing from all other business, he remained 
in Paris some thirteen months, where he acted as sole secretary to 
the Commission for the negotiation of the Preliminary Treaty of 
Peace, which was begun in 1782. Notwithstanding the import- 
ance of Whitefoord's diplomatic services, the Government suggested 
no reward, and it was not till after his case was brought to the 
notice of the King that he was rewarded with a small pension. 
Although the State was slow to recognise his talents and accom- 
plishments, he was elected a member of the Royal Society of 
London for his literary and scientific acquirements, a member of 
the Royal Society of Edinburgh, the Society of Antiquaries, and 
the Philosophical Society of Philadelphia. Outside the artists' 
profession he was unrivalled as a connoisseur of art, and he had a 
fine collection of specimens of distinguished artists to the number 


of two hundred and twenty-six, which were sold at Christie's after 
his death in iSio. In addition to the honours already referred to, 
the Society for the Improvement of Arts, Manufactures, and 
Commerce elected him Chairman of their Committee in 1786, and 
Vice-chairman of the Society in iSoo — a position which had 
usually been conferred on persons of the highest rank only. The 
circumstances of Oliver Goldsmith's " Retaliation " are too well 
known to need a detailed reproduction, except to state that the 
epitaph on Whitefoord was published in the fourth and subsequent 
editions of Goldsmith's Poems, and is worth quoting : — 

" Here Whitefoord reclines, and deny it who can, 
Though lie merrily liv'd, he is now a grave man. 
Rare compound of oddity, frolic, and fun. 
Who relish 'd a joke, and rejoiced in a pun ; 
Whose temper was generous, open, sincere, 
A stranger to flatt'ry, a stranger to fear ; 
Who scalter'd wit and humour at will, 
Whose daily bon )iiots half a column might fill ; 
A Scotsman from pride and from prejudice free ; 
A scholar, but surely no pedant was he." 

Previous to, and contemporary with, Robert Fergusson, there 
was quite a dynasty of small poetasters who did not write much, 
but yet were the authors of songs which were memorable for their 
popularity. For instance, there was Dr Austin, 1726-17 76, the 
author of " For Lack of Gold," who made his name in Edinburgh 
in medicine and only appears to have been once inspired, and 
then owing to a disappointment in love. It appears that the lady 
was Miss Jean Drummond, who, in 1749, married the Duke of 
Athole, leaving her earlier lover to lament that 

" A star and garter have more art 

Than youth, a true and faithful heart." 

After the fashion of human kind, the wound ultimately healed; 
nor did he carry out his threat to rove henceforth in distant 
climes, nor yet the other resolution thus expressed : — 

" No cruel fair shall ever move 
My injured heart again to love." 

Then there is " Roy's Wife of Aldivalloch," which was for some 


time attributed to Mrs Grant of Laggan, the celebrated authoress 
of Letters from the Mountains, Essays on the Superstitions of the 
Highlands of Scotland, a volume of Poems, ^:c. ; but it was written 
by Mrs Grant of Carron, a native of Banffshire, who was born 
1745, and married for her second husband Dr Murray, of Bath, 
where she died in 18 14. According to tradition, Roy of Aldival- 
loch distinguished himself in one of the risings of the clans by 
holding a small island in the Firth of Forth with a mere handful 
of men. The Balloch mentioned in the still popular song is 
situated at the foot of Loch Tay, and is now known as Tay 

" The Nabob " and " Ye shall Walk in Silk Attire " are also 
deservedly popular songs, and were written by Susanna Blamire 
(1747-1794), who was not born in Scotland, but at Cardew Hall, 
near CarHsle, and was the daughter of the laird of the Oakes, in 
Cumberland. While very young she lost her mother, and was 
brought up by a wealthy aunt named Mrs Simpson of Thaek- 
wood. In Scotland much of her life was spent, and she became 
greatly attached to its history and traditions. It is true she wrote 
a number of English pieces, but her reputation as an author is 
due to her Scottish songs. She was most happy in the expression 
of her sentiments through the medium of the Scots vernacular. 
Her longest poem is entitled " Stocklewath, or the Cumbrian 
Village." For a considerable time her songs and poems were 
circulated among her friends and acquaintances in manuscript 
form, but ihey were published in Edinburgh in 1842, forty-eight 
years after her death, the authoress being designated on the title 
page, " The Muse of Cumberland." 

In this connection the song of " Roslin Castle " may also 
be mentioned, as it was so highly appreciated by the poet Burns, 
whose judgment on the qualities of a song is, of course, entitled 
to a hearing. As to the author, Richard Hewitt, little is known, 
except that when a lad he was employed to take Dr Blacklock, 
the blind poet, from place to place during his residence in Cum- 
berland. In addition to this he acted as his amanuensis, subse- 
quently becoming Secretary to Lord Milton, then Lord Justice 


Clerk, and Sub-Minister for Scotland under Archibald, Duke of 

Argyle, but his health gave way under the pressure of work, and 

he died in 1764. The air to " Roslin Castle" was formerly 

known as " The House of Clamniis." 

A far better-known nanit; than Ricliard Hewitt is that of 

James Tytler, a man who played many parts, and yet his talents 

were vastly underrated. The son of a Brechin 

James >ier, minister, he was originally educated with a view 
1 747- 1805. ' ^ ^ 

to the Church, but subsequently changed his 

mind, entering the medical profession, which he could easily have 
adorned had he made that his aim, but he had too keen a desire 
for travel and adventure to make an indelible mark in any one 
walk in life. As an instance of his adventurous spirit, he was the 
first person in Scotland to make a balloon ascent, in face of much 
opposition and a wide-spread belief that such an adventure was a 
temptation of Providence, which it was wicked to incur, and 
which earned him the soubriquet of " Balloon Tytler " In the 
course of his life he devoted much time to general literature, to 
which he added chemical investigation. It is worthy of remark 
that he was editor and principal compiler of the original 
EncyclopcBdia Britamiica^ which now holds so important a place 
an)ong books of reference. Besides his other literary gifts he had 
the faculty of rhyming, and left at least three well-known songs to 
further enrich the poetry of Scotland — "Loch Errock Side," which 
derives its name from a lake in Perthshire; "The Bonnie Bruckit 
Lassie," and " Lass, gin ye Lo'e Me," the last of which was pro- 
bably suggested to the author by an old fragment which was 
published by Herd. After a life of much activity and adventure 
Tytler died at Massachusetts, in 1805, at the age of fifty-eight. 

Another well-known name — at all events a name that 

deserves to be known — is that of Elizabeth Hamilton, who, though 

born in Belfast, was of Scottish parentage, and 

Elizabeth Hamilton, ^ ^j^^^ ^^^ inherited strong Scottish sym- 

1758-1816. . ^ ^ 

pathies, which were no doubt strengthened 

from the fact that she spent much of her life in Scotland. She 

was a versatile writer, and her works comprise Letters of n Hindoo 


Rajah, which appeared in 1796 ; Alenwirs of Modern Philosophers, 

1800 ; Letters on Education, 1802 ; Life of Agrippina, 1804 ; and 

Letters on the Moral and Religious Principle, 1806. The work by 

which she is now best known, however, is the Cottagers of 

Glenburnie. Briefly, it is a vivid and realistic representation of 

rural life in Scodand a century ago, and is valuable owing to its 

historical side-lights. For nearly a century it was to be found on 

the shelves of almost every cottage library in Scotland. The 

Memoirs of the Life of Agrippina is a fascinating and interesting 

sketch. Although the authoress does not claim to be a Latin 

scholar, but frankly acknowledges her indebtedness to Murphy's 

Translation of the Annals of Tacitus, Adams on Roman Antiquities, 

and other sources, she seems to have grasped the Roman spirit 

in a thorough and sympathetic manner. We are also indebted to 

her for that popular Scots song, " My Ain Fireside," which will 

be readily recalled by the first few lines : — 

" I ha'e seen great anes, an' sat in great ha's, 
'Mang lords and fine ladies a' covered wi' braws ; 
At feasts made for princes, wi' princes I've been 
Whare the grand sheen o' splendour has dazzled my een ; 
But a sight sae delightfu', I trow, I ne'er spied 
As the bonnie blithe blink o' mine ain fireside." 

Another well-known ballad is popular in Galloway — the 

author's native place — " Mary's Dream," which is deservedly 

popular throughout the whole of Scotland ; and 

John Lowe, entitled, " A Morning Poem." Both 

1750-1798. ^ ' ^ . , 

are by John Lowe, who was born m 1750 and 

died in 1798. The latter composition is characterised by a kind 

of weird pathos, with a fine admixture of natural light and shade, 

the opening scene being vividly before the author's mind's-eye 

when he wrote : — 

" The moon had climbed the highest hill 
Which rises o'er the source of Dee, 
And from the eastern summit shed 
Her silvery light on tower and tree." 

The author was the son of a gardener at Kenmure Castle, New- 
Galloway. He acquired the rudiments of a classical education at 
the Parish School of Kells, which fired his ambition for still more 


extensive knowledge. In his ardent desire to become a scholar 
worthy of the name, he was induced to engage in the teaching of 
sacred music and the violin during his spare hours from weaving, 
to which he had been apprenticed. He was thus enabled to 
secure the advantages of the University of Edinburgh, to which 
he betook himself in 1771, entering the Divinity Classes. While 
at Edinburgh he was made tutor to the family of Mr M'Ghie of 
Airds, a gentleman of limited means, a good reputation, and a 
large family. Lowe ultimately went to reside with the M'Ghie's, 
whose estate was situated in the peninsula where meet and blend 
the rivers Dee and Ken. 

Here, amidst congenial surroundings, his poetical talent was 
first manifested, and he composed the verses which have preserved 
his name- till the present time. His other most popular piece is 
entitled " A Morning Poem," and is of a descriptive and pastoral 
character, while " Mary's Dream " is pathetic and sentimental, 
bearing evidence of having been inspired by a painful incident. 
During the time he was tutor in the M'Ghie family, Alexander 
Miller, a young and promising surgeon, the betrothed lover of 
Mary M'Ghie, was drowned at sea, and the sad incident supplied 
the subject of the poem. The gist of the poem is that a spirit 
appeared to Mary in a dream, which can best be conveyed by 
the concluding four lines : — 

" Loud crow'd the cock, the shadow fled, 
No more of Sandy could she see ; 
But soft the passing spirit said— 

' Sweet Mary, weep no more for me.' " 

It was Lowe's intention to enter the Church of Scotland, for 
which he was fully qualified, but seeing no immediate prospect 
he emigrated to America, and subsequently became tutor in the 
family of the brother of the illustrious George Washington, He 
crossed the Atlantic to Virginia, where he forgot Jessie M'Ghie, 
the girl he left behind him in Scotland, marrying a Virginian 
lady, with whom he lived unhappily. Although he became a 
clergyman in an Episcopal Church in Virginia, his ill-assorted 
marriage appears to have changed his whole outlook on life, and 


he became dissolute in his habits. Finally, overtaken with 
poverty and disgrace, he is said to have died from an overdose of 
opium in 1798, in the forty-eighth year of his age. Lowe is said 
to have written one of the airs which is set to his popular 
ballad in Johnsoti's Musical Museum, and he is also credited with 
the authorship of a song entitled " Pompey's Ghost." 

The name of Robert Graham of Gartmore is suggestive of 

days long past and gone. His best known song has so much of 

the spirit of the old cavalier that in reading it 

Robert Graham, ^^^ j^ forcibly reminded of the spirited effusions 


of the Marquis of Montrose. As a matter of 

fact, the " Cavalier Song " was for some time attributed to 

Montrose by no less an authority than Sir Walter Scott, and 

when its true authorship was discovered it earned for its author 

the title of " The last of the Cavalier Poets." The author, Robert 

Graham, was the son of Nichol Graham of Gartmore, and Lady 

Margaret, daughter of the twelfth Earl of Glencairn. Early in life 

he went abroad and became a planter in Jamaica, where he met 

his first wife, who is reported to have brought him a considerable 

fortune. In 1785 he was chosen Rector of Glasgow University, 

in opposition to Burke, and two years before his death he sat as 

Member of Parliament for Stirlingshire. On the death of the 

fifteenth, and last, Earl of Glencairn he inherited some of his 

estates, taking the name of Cunningham as a prefix to his own. 

Unfortunately, Graham did not long enjoy either his new title or 

the acquisition to his fortune, for he died in the following year at 

the comparatively early age of forty-seven. Besides the 

" Cavalier's Song " our author wrote a number of lyrics by no 

means void of merit, though none of them show the spirit and 

ability of the " Cavalier's Song." 

Passing to the well-known song, " Auld Robin Gray," which 

has been designated "The king of Scottish ballads," and yet is the 

only piece that has come from the pen of its 

Lady Ann Lindsay, ^uthoress which at all entitles her to fame. For 

at least half-a-century its authorship remained a 

secret, thus making it the subject of frequent dispute, but it is 


«o\v definitely assigned to Lady Anne Lindsay, the eldest daughter 
of the Earl of Balcarres. She was born at Balcarres in 1750, and 
was married to Sir Andrew Barnard, private secretary to the 
Oovernor of Cape Colony, in 1793, and died at her London resi- 
dence in 1825. In spite of the fact that the authorship of this 
famous ballad was kept a secret so long, Lady Anne Lindsay 
afterwards went to much trouble to furnish to the public all the 
particulars connected with its composition, and this created some 
scepticism with regard to the genuineness of her claim. " Auld 
Robin Gray " is usually sung to the air composed for it by the 
Rev. William Leeves, about 177 1, who was then Rector of Wring- 
ton, in Somersetshire. For the full exposition of the English air 
it requires two of the four-line stanzas, while the Scots air only 
requires one. To provide for the exigencies of the English air the 
first four lines of the poem beginning " When the sheep are in 
^he fauld " are generally left out. In Scotland few songs have 
been more popular than " Auld Robin Gray," although its popu- 
larity has by no means been confined to Scotland. It has been 
translated into many languages, and has been the subject of many 
plays and pictures which could not have entered into the concep- 
tion of the authoress when she penned it. The revelations of 
the motive of the poem as given by the authoress, alluded to 
above, does not enhance its romantic features, and would have 
been better kept in the background. 

In the same category as Lady Lindsay may be placed 
William Dudgeon, 1753-1815, who was also the author of one 
well-known piece, entitled "The Maid that Tends the Goats." 
This one piece has been sufficient to perpetuate his name, while 
many an author with a larger output has been long since forgotten. 
Dudgeon was born in 1753, at Tyningham, Haddingtonshire, six 
years before the Poet Burns, and was the son of a farmer, which 
occupation he also followed with much success. When Burns 
was making his Border tour he was introduced to him, and 
the greater Poet thought him worthy of a note in his journal 
to the following effect : " Dudgeon, a poet at times ; a worthy, 
remarkable character ; natural penetration, a good deal of informa- 


tion, some genius, and extreme modesty." This may explain why 
one who could write so creditably (and, as Burns says, with some 
genius) did not take the public into his confidence more 
frequently than he did. Among the author's other virtues, if 
virtues they can be called, we are informed that he was a shy, 
well-conducted, Puritanic person — a poet, and writer of sermons. 
Yet the only specimen of his poetic genius which has been 
handed down to us is the one we have mentioned. This song, it 
would appear, was sung into public notice through the medium of 
the stage — a path to popularity which could scarcely be appre- 
ciated by its Puritanic author if he was in any way a reflex of his 
time. The melody is taken from the Rev. Patric Macdonald's 
Highland Airs, showing that the Highland laird who composed 
the air was technically correct according to the modern theory 
of music. 

Notwithstanding the many poets and authors, great and 

small, already mentioned in the course of this sketch, Robert 

Fergusson falls to be placed among the first 

Robert Fergusson, ^^^^^ ^^ Scotland's more modern and truly 

1 750- 1 774. 

national poets. More than half-a-century 

intervened between the birth of Ramsay and Fergusson, yet the 
latter must rank as Ramsay's immediate successor, for he is the 
connecting link between Ramsay and Burns. It is not so much 
the bulk of Fergusson's work that must be taken into considera- 
tion — for he passed away from the scene of his labours at an age 
when few poets have commenced to write at all — as the fact that 
he struck the vernacular keynote which was to set vibrating the 
more tuneful lyre of Burns. Indeed, we have it on the authority 
of Burns himself that when a very young man he had all but 
abandoned poetry in despair, till on reading Fergusson's Scottish 
poems he " strung anew his wildly-sounding lyre with emulating 
vigour." There can be no two opinions of the impression those 
poems made upon Burns. When he first visited Edinburgh he 
found only a green mound and scattered gowans above the spot 
where the remains of this wayward genius lay buried. He was 
moved to the depths of his soul, and when he recalled the brief 


and painful past of his unfortunate brother bard he uncovered his 
head and wept over his last resting-place with all the fervour of the 
Poet's soul. Nor was it a spasmodic or transitory emotion. What 
better proof can be given of the depth and sincerity of that 
emotion than the fact that Burns at once sought leave to erect 
the humble monument in the Canongate Churchyard which still 
marks the spot? Robert Fergusson was born at Edinburgh, 
September 5, 1750, where his father held the office of accountant 
to the British Linen Hall, which, though respectable, was poorly 
paid. Like his son, he had poetic gifts ; but with a small salary, 
and a family of five children to provide for, he had not the leisure 
or freedom from anxiety necessary to cultivate the gift of poetry. 
It is evident from some of the letters he wrote to his brother 
that the family were frequently in straitened circumstances. 
When Robert was first put to school, his father's income was 
scarcely more than twenty pounds per annum, and yet out of that 
small annual aggregate he expended 35s for the schooling of his 
son, which is but another of many instances that might be given 
to illustrate the value the people of Scotland have always put 
upon education. When about six years of age, Robert Fergusson 
was sent to school, but his mother, who was a woman of most 
excellent parts, had not left his mind uninstructed. After having 
attended the High School of Edinburgh the usual term of four 
years, he was transferred to the Grammar School of Dundee, 
which was distinguished as an efficient educational institution 
even in Fergusson's time. In 1762 Fergusson earned a bursary, 
or exhibition, of the annual value of ;^io for four years at the 
University of St. Andrews, where he soon distinguished himself as 
a student of more than ordinary gifts. His case is the oft- 
repeated story in connection with the youth of Scotland in the 
seventeenth and eighteenth centuries — he entered the University 
with the view of going into the Church, and he matriculated in 
1765. This was rather the desire of his parents, however, than 
freedom of choice on his part ; but he appears to have willingly 
acquiesced, for at the age of fifteen he inscribed his name in his 
class-book, " Robert Fergusson, Student of Divinity." As it had 

been at the High School of Edinburgh, he entered the University 
with the highest promise of rapid progress ; but though this was 
the case it does not appear that he devoted himself to a deep 
study of the classics, which were then thought so essential. On 
the authority of Ruddiman, it is stated that Virgil and Horace 
were the only Latin authors be took much interest in. In spite of 
his natural bias for poetry, he does not seem to have shown any 
marked predilection for Greek literature. We are informed that 
on the fly-leaf of his copy of Xenophon's Anabasis is written in 
his own hand, " Ex libris Robert Fergusson," and underneath a 
rude drawing of a harp. Before Fergusson had been long at the 
University his fellow-students recognised that he was " a fellow of 
infinite jest " and excellent fancy, the very qualities which were 
instrumental in hastening his ultimate ruin. As a matter of fact, 
his great natural gifts gradually drew him into gay and reckless 
company, and he became noted among his companions as a wit, 
a songster, a mimic, a viveier — in short, a man who rejoiced to 
live his life. But his moral sense had too keen an edge to allow 
him to long play the buffoon, and he paid for his folly by the 
bitterest pangs of remorse and religious despondency, which ended 
in reason being hurled from her throne. Soon there was a vacant 
chair in the circle of his jovial companions, and they might have 
soliloquised over the remains of the unfortunate youth whom 
they had undone by their flattery and empty compliments, as did 
Hamlet over the skull of poor Yorick when he exclaimed with 
pathetic irony, " Where be thy jibes now, thy gambols, thy songs 
of merriment which were wont to set the table in a roar ?" 

From all that is known of Fergusson's life and character it 
must not be assumed that he was more dissipated than the 
average young man of the day ; but owing to his delicate constitu- 
tion and susceptible mental temperament he was soon vanquished, 
physically and mentally, while some of his more robust companions 
were permitted farther to play the rebel against Nature. From 
time to time there have been two statements preferred against 
Fergusson, but they are scarcely worth serious attention. The 
one is that he was disobedient and refractory at college, and was 

disgraced for satirising the University professors ; and the other 
is that he had neither perseverance nor application for the study 
of law ur divinity, which left him no alternative but the drudgery 
of a copying clerk. With respect to the first, it does not appear 
that the satires were other than innocent, playful, and void of 
offence. In the lines of Burns, the charge may well be disposed 


" The cleanest corn thai e'er was diglu 
May hae some piles o' caff in, 
Sae ne'er a fellow- mortal slight 
Fcr random fits o' daffin." 

Then with regard to the charge of lack of application and perse- 
verance, it must not be forgotten that when his father died he was 
without means to pursue the study of divinity or take up the 
profession of the law, and had consequently to devote himself to 
the transcription of law papers for his daily bread. What wonder 
if he became restive under this yoke, and yearned for conviviality, 
summing up the position in one of his own lines : — 
" Tir"d o" the law and a' its phrases." 

He commenced to contribute occasional English poems to 
the IVeck/y Magazine, or Edinburgh Aniusetnent, in 1771, which 
had been started by the brothers Ruddiman three years previously. 
His first contributions were three Pastorals entitled respectively 
"Morning," "Noon," and "Night;" and though they are by no 
means void of merit, the English in which they are written is 
halting and artificial, and bears evident marks of the influence of 
Pope and Gay, who were still factors in English poetry. In spite 
of these defects, however, which are probably more apparent to a 
later generation than they were at the time, Fergusson's contribu- 
tions greatly increased the reputation of the Weekly Magazine, 
which was eagerly read in the Coffee Rooms, and the publishers 
received letters of congratulation from all parts of the country. It 
was when Fergusson had recourse to his homely vernacular for 
the exercise of his poetic fancy that his true success began. 
Immediately his new-found strength found expression in a little 
poem, which was sent from Glasgow to his publishers, entitled 


the " Muse's Choice," which straightway ranked Fergusson next 
to Ramsay, and this when his Muse had only sounded its first 
notes. In due course he essayed loftier flights, for the " Farmer's 
Ingle," '■ Leith Races," " Odes to the Bee," and the " Gowdspink " 
soon followed. His compositions exercised a potent influence 
over Burns, which must be regarded as the highest tribute that 
can be paid to their merit. 

It may be here remarked that it does appear to critics of a 
later day that Burns over-estimated his indebtedness to Fergusson. 
If he did exaggerate Fergusson's poetical claims to the ranks of 
fame this was probably due to his modesty and generous disposi- 
tion. There was much in common between Burns and Fergusson 
in temperament and natural disposition. Like Burns, Fergusson 
could fascinate his friends by his conversational powers and ready 
wit, which were enhanced by a child-like gaiety and artlessness of 
manner, a kind and genial disposition. These, with his poetic 
gifts and excellent vocal powers in the rendering of a Scots song, 
endeared him to the coterie of associates, who did him much 
moral harm, and the giddy youth was gradually plunged into a 
course of life which unfitted him for sustained effort and the dis- 
charge of his daily duties. In 1773, when he was twenty-three 
years of age, his contributions to the Weekly Magazine were 
collected into a small volume and published by W. & T. Ruddi- 
nian, which was much appreciated by the public, and resulted in 
a profit of ^50 to the author. To one who had been in the 
straitened circumstances to which Fergusson had been so long 
accustomed fifty pounds was a little fortune, which had the effect 
of turning his head. From the time of Allan Ramsay many able 
poetical productions had appeared, among which might be named 
Ross's " Helenore," Falconer's " Shipwreck," and Beattie's 
'•'■ Minstrel." But there was an intense yearning for the lyre of a 
more homely muse, and Fergusson appears to have supplied the 
want. This is plainly indicated by Dr Toshack, of Perth, who 
wrote under the nom de plmne of Andrew Gray, and from whom 
the following lines may be cited : — 


" Ve've ?>nglish plain enough, n;ie doulu. 
And Latin too ; hut ye do suit 
Your lines to folk that's out about 

'Mang hills and braes — 
That's the thing that gars me shout 

Sae loud your praise." 

Immediately after the small volume by Rtiddiman appeared, in 
1772-3, P'ergusson's poetical faculty appears to have increased in 
productiveness and vigour, for " The Address to the Tron Kirk 
Bell," " Caller Water," " Plainstanes and Causeway," " The Rising 
and Sitting of the Session," " Ode to the Bee and Gowdspink," 
" The Farmer's Ingle," " Leith Races," with a number of less 
important pieces, were thrown from his pen with marvellous 
rapidity, all adding to his reputation in the estimation of the 
Edinburgh public. Some of these pieces, such as " Plainstanes 
and Causeway," " The Rising and Sitting of the Session," and 
Leith Races," sparkled with allusions and incidents with which 
the Edinburgh people were familiar. It may be truly said that 
Fergusson is the poet of city life. But he was not exclusively 
acquainted with the habits and customs of the city ; he was 
surprismgly happy in the portrayal of rustic life. Where is the 
peasant who could not re-echo his sentiments in wishing? — 

" Peace to the husbandman an' a' his tribe, 

Whase care fells a' our wants frae year to year ; 
Lang may his sock and couler turn the gleyb, 
And banks o' corn bend down wi' laded ear." 

He gives further proof of how well he grasped the spirit and 
advantages of rural life in " Home Content," where he says : — 

" When the dog-day heats Ijegin 
To birstle and to peel the skin, 
May I lie streekit at my ease, 
Beneath the cauler shady trees, 
Far frae the din o' borrow toon, 
Whare water plays the haughs bedown ; 
To jouk the summer's rigour there, 
And breathe awhile the cauler air, 
'Mang herds and honest cottar fouck. 
That till the farm and feed the flock, 
Careless o' mair." 


And again : — 

" O Nature ! canly, blithe, and free, 
Whare is there keekin' glass like thee ?" 

How frequently we have in Fergusson's poems the humorous 
and the pathetic blended in that ingenuous and rollicking fashion 
so characteristic of the Scot of that day, who was as much afraid of 
being thought too serious as of being thought too effeminate. 
An example is afforded by the following lines from the " Gowd- 
spink," which is only one of many illustrations that might be 
given : — 

"Now steekit frae the gowan field, 

Frae ilka fav'rite houff and bield ; 

But mergh, alas ! to disengage, 

Your bonny boucke frae fettering cage. 

Your free-born bosom beats in vain, 

For darling liberty again ; 

In window hung, how aft we see 

Thee keek about at warblers free. 

That carol saft, and sweetly sing, 

Wi' a' the blythness o' the spring ; 

Like Tantalus they hing you here. 

To spy the glories o' the year." 

It may be claimed for Fergusson that he was not only a keen 

observer of the men and manners of his time, but he was familiar 

with the historical conditions of his country, as may be gathered 

from scattered allusions in many of his pieces. Among other 

things he marked the decline of Scottish music which supervened 

with the Reformation, compared with the time when savants from 

many parts of Europe flocked to the north to study at the Sang 

Schule of Aberdeen. The following lines will suffice as an 

illustration : — 

" On Scotia's plains in days of yore, 
When lads and lasses tartan wore, 
Saft music rang on ilka shore, 

In homely weed, 
But harmony is now no more, 

And music dead. 


O ScolUind, ihal could aince afi'oid 
To bang the piih of Roman sword, 
Winna your sons \vi' joint accord 

To bailie speed. 
And fight till music be rcstor'd, 

Which now lies dead?' 

It is somewhat remarkable that although Fergusson was a 
great lover of music, and possessed exceptional vocal powers, he 
did not contribute anything of importance to the lyrical poetry of 
his country. As a song writer lie is far inferior to Burns, 
Tannahill, and Lady Nairne. 

Though it is apparent that he was qualified by education and 
poetic gifts to imp his wing for boldest flights into the sublime, 
he was content to confine himself to those homely themes which 
appealed to the tastes of those in the humblest walks of life. 
Nor can it be disputed that this, to a large extent, was the province 
of Robert Burns — thus we can more easily understand why he was 
encouraged to " string anew his wildly sounding lyre " on reading 
Fergusson's poems. 

Even in Burns's versification the influence of Fergusson is quite 
apparent. The " Cottar's Saturday Night " may be read in the 
light of the " Farmer's Ingle," while " Leith Races " has also 
exercised a considerable influence in the inspiration of the " Holy 
Fair." The opening verse of " Leith Races," which is only one 
of several that might be quoted to show the similarity, is as 

follows : — 

" In July month, ae bonny morn, 

Whan Nature's rokelay green 

Was spread o'er ilka rig o' corn 

To charm our roving een, 
Glouring about I saw a queen. 

The fairest 'neath the lift ; 
Her een were o' the siller sheen. 
Her skin like snawy drift, 

Sae white that day." 

That of the " Holy Fair " is as follows : — 

" Upon a summer Sunday morn. 
When Nature's face is fair, 
I walked forth to view the corn. 
An' snuff the caller air. 


The rising sun, owre Galston Muirs, 

Wi' glorious light was glintin' ; 
The hares were hirplin' down the furrs, 

The lav'rocks they were chantin' 
Fu' sweet that day." 

In some instances Fergusson equals Burns ; but it is the 
exception, for he had not the same capacity for sustained effort. 
What has been said of Shakespeare might be said of Burns, viz., 
that he improved and beautified everything that he touched, and 
it was no mean compliment to the genius of Fergusson that it 
had so large a share in quickening and vitaHsing the genius and 
talent of the greater Poet. When we remember that Fergusson 
passed away at the early age of twenty-four, before the poetical 
faculty in the ordinary way is sufificiently matured to gather 
inspiration from its native environment, it is well-nigh incompre- 
hensible why he should have left so indelible a mark on the 
poetry of his country. By a different course of life, and a riper 
and more varied experience of human character, it is impossible 
to predict the poetic eminence to which Fergusson might have 
attained. So many of the scenes and incidents which subse- 
quently found a fuller echo in Burns had kindled the poetic fire 
of Fergusson that it seems as if the Fates had decreed that the 
one Poet should be the complement and forerunner of the other, 
When Fergusson visited Dumfries, which but a few years after- 
wards was to play so important a part in the life and poetry of 
Burns, he paid a flattering tribute to the place where the greater 
Poet ended his life and work. In what a different spirit were the 
verses conceived from those with which he commemorated his 
visit to Fife. Indeed, one of the natives of the ancient kingdom 
was so incensed at the verses that he challenged the Poet to a 
duel. Fergusson, though confident in his ability to wield the pen, 
was not so sanguine about successfully wielding the sword, and so 
ignored the challenge. Fergusson, in the company of his friend 
Lieutenant Wilson, walked from Edinburgh to Dumfries to visit 
Charles Salmon, a brother poet and native of Edinburgh, who 
was well known for his Jacobite effusions, the best-known of 
which is the " Royal Oak Tree." In this poem Salmon makes a 


distinct reference to King Charles' Oak at Boscobel, as we gather 
from the following lines :— 

" Old Pendril, the mlllL-r, ut the ri^k of his blood, 
Hid the King of our Isle in the King of the Wood." 

Since Salmon's day Boscobel and its associations has l)een a 
fertile theme for quite a nutnber of writers, one of the best-known 
being Harrison Ainsworth's fascinating historical romance entitled 
Boscobel. Fergusson's friend Salmon had come to Dumfries to a 
situation in a printing concern, the first of the kind established in 
that place. Previous to P'ergusson starting on his return journey 
to Edinburgh he was requested to leave some memorial of his 
visit to Nithsdale, and he at once wrote the spirited little poem in 
which he says : — 

" The gods, sui-e in some canny hour 
To bonny Nith ha'e ta'en a tour, 
Where bonny blinks the caller llow'r. 

Beside the stream, 
And sportive there ha'e shawn tiieir |iovv'r 

In fairy dream. 

Had Horace liv'd, tiial pleasant sinner, 
Wha lov'd gude wine to synd his dinner, 
His Muse, though dowf, the deil be in her, 

Wi' blithest sang. 
The drink wad round Parnassus rin her 

Ere it were lang, 

Nae niair he'd sung to auld Mitcenas 
The blinking een o' bonny Venus, 
His leave ai ance he wud ha'e ta'en us. 

For claret here, 
Which Jove and a' his gods sill rain us, 

Frae year to year." 

It is greatly to be deplored that one who had given so rich a 
promise of rare natural gifts should have ended life so sadly. 
When Fergusson lost his mental balance, his mother was in such 
extreme poverty that she had no other way of disposing of him 
except to send him to the asylum, and a momentary awakening 
to his painful position plunged him deeper into darkness and 
despair. On his first crossing the thresliold of the receptacle for 


the insane, by a flash of consciousness the hopelessness of his 
fate was revealed to him in all its naked reality, and he uttered a 
wild cry of despair which was at once responded to by a chorus of 
howls from the inmates of the asylum, among whom this young 
and gifted genius was to end his short and chequered career. 
This incident left an impression on the friends who attended him 
of inexpressible horror which haunted them till the end of their 
days. For some time before Fergusson finally lost his mental 
balance he was subject to fits of gloom and despondency that 
were obviously due to the highly-strung nervous constitution and 
artistic temperament which are frequently so closely identified 
with poetic genius. 

Marvellous powers of observation were united in Fergusson 
with quickness of impression and richness of fancy; his sensitive 
being vibrated to the ebb and flow of external circumstances in 
an uncommon degree. When he surveyed the face of Nature, it 
appears as if the whole image was impressed upon his soul with 
lightning speed. When he turned his eye upon mankind, he 
could penetrate to the innermost depths of human nature, gauging 
their every peculiarity with amazing exactness for one of his age 
and experience. As a scholar, he could draw inspiration from 
the perennial fountain of ancient genius which education and 
circumstances had placed beyond the reach of his great successor, 
Robert Burns. Let not Fergusson be judged by the limited 
extent of his poetical work, or his unproductiveness in the purely 
lyrical sphere, but by the potent force which can be so clearly 
discerned in embryo. By his early death he was cut off before 
the flower of his natural genius had put forth its leaves. 

Between Fergusson and Burns several minor poets come 

within the range of our survey who contributed to the general 

bulk of Scottish song. John Dunlop was 

J un op, among that number, and one of the sweetest of 

1755-1820^ ^ 

the smaller fry, though now scarcely known. He 

was born in 1755, at Carmyle House, the residence of his father, 

in the parish of Old Monkland, near Glasgow, of which city he 

subsequently became Lord Provost. He was not only a poet, 


but a vocalist, and his powers were known and appreciated by his 
friends and acquaintances. He was the author of a considerable 
quantity of verse, two volumes of which were printed in 1817 for 
private circulation, and it is stated that he left four volumes of 
poetry in manuscript. His literary instincts were carried in his 
son to a higlier degree, wlio wrote A History of Fiction, also 
A History of Rinnan Literature from the earliest period to the 
close of the Augustan age. In the capacity of Scottish Advocate 
and Sheriff of Renfrewshire he found much time for literary pur- 
suits, and printed privately a small collection of his father's 
writings in 1836. This collection is now scarce, but the best- 
known songs in it are, " O dinna ask me gin I lo'e thee " 
and " The Year that's Awa." Four of Dunlop's songs are 
included in the Modern Scottish Minstrel of Dr C. Rogers, which 
appeared in 1857. 

But a much better known name than that of John Dunlop 
is Mrs Grant of Laggan, whose maiden name was M'Vicar. Her 
father was connected with the army, and was 
Mrs Grant of Laggan, ^ -^^ ^ Highland regiment which was 

sent to assist m the conquest of Canada. 
From ill-health he was compelled to resign his commission, and 
returned to Scotland in 1768 with the view of ending his days in 
retirement ; but to his great misfortune he was deprived of his 
estate by the breaking out of the Revolutionary War, and had to 
take the office of barrack-master at Fort Augustus, in Glenmore. 
His daughter Anne was married to the Rev. James Grant, 
military chaplain, in 1779. After his marriage Grant became 
incumbent of the parish of Laggan, near Fort Augustus, where he 
remained till his death in 180 1. By the death of her husband 
Mrs Grant was left with eight children, and many debts, which 
she determined to pay. Actuated by this high sense of honour, 
she first took a farm, and afterwards published a volume of poems 
in 1803, which enabled her to pay her deceased husband's debts. 
Released of this incubus, she removed to Stirling, and sub- 
sequently to Edinburgh, where she devoted herself entirely to 
literature. Her house became the favourite resort of men of 


letters, amongst whom were Lord Jeffrey, Henry Mackenzie, and 
Sir Walter Scott. Nor did she confine herself to poetry. In 
1806 she published a collection of letters which were entitled 
Letters fro7n the Mountains which gained her a considerable 
reputation. This work was succeeded by Memoirs of an 
American Lady, in 1808, and Essays on the Superstitions of 
the Highlands, in 181 1. In 1825 she received a pension of one 
hundred pounds, which was ultimately augmented by several 
legacies from friends, added to which her prolific pen procured 
her a position of independence. No one among all the litterati of 
Edinburgh at that time had a more accurate knowledge of High- 
land customs, Highland character and legends, or wielded a more 
facile pen in depicting them. Indeed, it was believed for some 
time that Waverley and Rob Roy were the products of her pen. 
Her two most popular songs are " O where, tell me where, is 
your Highland Laddie Gone?" and "Could I find a Bonnie 
Glen." The former of the two songs has not only had a great 
vogue in Scotland but it has long been a favourite in England. 

" O'er the Muir amang the Heather " appears to be the only 

production of its authoress, Jean Glover, and its popularity has 

always been great. Of its authoress comparatively 

■^^^"^^r^"^' little is known, except that she was born at 
1758-1801. . ^ 

Townhead, Kilmarnock, and came of a respect- 
able family. From the little that is known of her, however, the 
assumption is that she was one of those sympathetic, impression- 
able creatures who are but too apt to fall into those errors of life 
which usually end in misfortune and misery. Naturally romantic, 
with a strong inclination for the stage, she attended the perform- 
ance of some strolling-players who visited Kilmarnock. Jean 
became enamoured of one of the sleight-of hand performers of the 
company, and eloped with him, rapidly adapting herself to a 
vagrant life, with its excitement and its irregularities, and spent 
the rest of her days travelling the country with her Lothario. 
The song was taken down by Burns from the singing of its 
authoress. Her character Burns does not attempt to shield, evidently 
not from lack of charity towards his erring sister woman, but out 


of contempt of the sleight-of-hand blackguard who had stolen 
away this charming Kilmarnock belle, who had the reputation of 
being exceptionally handsome. In addition to being the composer 
of this popular song, Jean Glover had fine natural vocal gifts, and 
the song she was said to have sung with most effect was " Green 
Grow the Rashes." After a life of many vicissitudes and trials 
she died at Letterkenny, in Ireland, in 1801, leaving this solitary 
lyric to perpetuate the memory of her sad and roving life. Origin- 
ally, the tune appeared about 1764 as a reel in Bremner's 
collection, and another version was published in Johnson's 

The concluding author of this chapter has usually met with 

but scant justice at the hands of his critics, and yet John 

Pinkerton has contributed his fair share to the 

Jolm Pinkerton, lit^j-.^ture of the country, if not as a poet, at 


least as an antiquarian and historian. 


twenty-four works cover a vast range, and show him to have been a 
writer of accurate knowledge and discriminating power, which 
scarcely justifies the partial oblivion which now is his. Born in 
Edinburgh, and almost self-educated, first studying law, then 
literature, he became a shrewd, though somewhat acrid critic, and 
this seems to have marred his reputation in the eyes of certain 
writers who have had occasion to refer to his work. Moreover, he 
was detected in literary deception in claiming that he had taken 
down the second part of the poem " Hardyknute " from a Lanark- 
shire lady, who gave it from memory as an ancient production, 
though he afterwards acknowledged the same to be his own. After 
the slashing and unmerciful attack he had made on Macpherson's 
" Ossian " this did him much harm. In his Se/ecl Scottish Ballads, 
too, he endeavoured to give the words of " Both well Bank " an 
antiquarian flavour by adopting an old form of spelling. In spite 
of those defects of character, however, he wrote and published a 
considerable amount of good original poetry, the merits of which 
were duly appreciated by Dr Bealtie. As a painstaking historian 
and antiquarian he ranks far above the average, and as such he 
was highly esteemed by Gibbon, who desired him as a colleague 


in editing the British historians. He was also in close correspon- 
dence with the most famous men of letters in his day. In the 
appreciation of Pinkerton's poetry Beattie stood not alone, for his 
admirers included Dr Percy and the fastidious Horace Walpole. 
His writings are of a miscellaneous character, and include 
Letters on Literature^ which contains a fund of valuable informa- 
tion, Scottish Tragic Ballads^ Select Scottish Ballads, and Ancient 
Scottish Poems. He also wrote a History of Scotland, which is 
marked by much critical insight and originality. His life was 
exclusively that of the indefatigable literary man, and his career 
was consequently not an eventful one. It is said that in youth 
he wrote for his own pleasure and gratification, and in age for his 
daily bread, which appears to have been the extent of his material 
reward. He died in Paris in the seventieth year of his age in a 
state of poverty and neglect. 


rohi-:rt iumn^xs, burgess of san- 
quhar, and some of his 

H RO r H E R FREE M E iN. 

IT is well known to those familiar with the life of Robert Burns 
that he was a frequent visitor to the ancient Royal Burgh of 
Sanquhar, and that he was also on terms of intimacy with some 
of its leading citizens. The town and parish were included in the 
district covered by him as an Exciseman, and, being at its western 
extremity, he was often obliged to remain there overnight ; and 
he conferred an abiding distinction on the burgh by dubbing it 
" Black Joan " in his ballad of " The Five Carlines." But few 
are aware that Burns had any closer connection with the town. 
He was, however, admitted a burgess and freeman of the Royal 
Burgh upon Tuesday, the 23rd day of December, 1794. The 
fact of Burns's admission to the freedom of Sanquhar had long 
been lost sight of, and how the knowledge of it was again brought 
to light is worth retailing. No regular roll of burgesses appears 
ever to have been kept in Sanquhar, and it v^as while endeavour- 
ing to supply this want that, in September, 1907, I, not quite 
unexpectedly, came across the entry of the Poet's admission to 
all the rights and privileges of a freeman. To obtain a list of the 
burgesses I had to search the Town Council minutes, vouchers 
and accounts, records of incorporated trades, and other papers 
preserved among the burgh archives. It was tedious work, 
carried on intermittently ; but a list of burgesses, so far as can be 
extracted from such sources, has now been compiled, commencing 
in 1 7 14 (previous to which year all the burgh's papers were 
accidently destroyed by fire) and bringing the burgess roll down 
to 1835. In my research I received much valuable assistance 
from Mr William Forsyth, the town clerk of Sanquhar, who gave 
me every facility for consulting the burgh records. 


The entry of Burns as a burgess of Sanquhar is given in a list 
drawn up by John Crichton, the town clerk of the time, being a 
" Note of burgess tickets given out by the town from 8th Novem- 
ber, 1794, to Michaelmas, 1796," and had been given in by him 
at the settling of the burgh accounts at Michaelmas, 1796, as 
evidence of the town's indebtedness to him — for the town clerk 
was allowed a fee of a shilling for each ticket he made out. The 
list embraces twenty-six names, and in the balance sheet of 
Thomas Barker, the treasurer, it is shown that John Crichton 
was paid twenty-six shillings for writing the tickets. In the entry, 
opposite the date, 23rd December, 1794, the Poet is described 
simply as " Mr Robert Burns, Dumfries." 

Needless to say, it was very gratifying to me when I came 
across such an interesting and historic document. My father had 
told me long before that Burns was a burgess of Sanquhar, but 
lack of documentary proof had made many people sceptical, who 
otherwise would have been proud to connect the Poet by such a 
close link with the ancient burgh. The people of Sanquhar were 
greatly delighted when undeniable testimony was produced, and 
the knowledge that Robert Burns had actually been a freeman of 
their " ain auld grey toun " seemed to make some of the citizens 
hold their heads "a wee thocht " higher. The list of burgesses 
as it stands shows an array of many men who were famous in 
their day and generation, in honouring whom the ancient burgh 
did greater honour to herself, and in no instance more so than in 
thus showing its respect for and admiration of the National Bard. 
The list of burgesses contains a surprising number of the names 
of intimate friends of the Poet and others who are referred to in 
his works, or mentioned in connection with him — names familiar 
to every Burns student. And believing that a list of these names 
will interest many readers I give them below. 

It was during the Provostship of his friend, Edward 
Whigham, the landlord of the Queensberry Arms Inn, that Burns 
became a freeman of Sanquhar, and it is interesting to know who 
formed the Town Council of the time. They were : — Provost, 
Edward Whigham, innkeeper ; Dean of Guild, John Crichton, 


Iieritor, Sanquhar : First Bailie, Edward Wilhcrington, heritor, 
Sanquhar; Second Hailie, Robert M'Malh, heritor, Sanquhar; 
Third Baihe, John Henderson, schoohnaster, Sanquhar; 
Treasurer, Thomas Barker at Newark. Councillors — John 
M'Murdo, Drumlanrig ; William Johnston of Roundstonefoot ; 
John Taylor at Castle Mains ; William Hutchinson at Rig ; 
Jolin Bra m well, overseer, Wanlockhead ; Robert Hunter, wright 
in Sancjuhar ; Thomas Bradfute, tailor in Santjuhar ; James 
M'Millan, shoemaker, Sanquhar : W^illiam Whigham, weaver, 
Sanquhar ; William Lorimer, clerk at Wanlockhead ; John 
Crichton, writer in Sanquhar. Of course all the above members 
of the Town Council were de facto burgesses and freemen. 

The following are intimates of Robert Burns, whose names are 
on the burgess roll, with the dates of their admission : — Robert 
Whigham, shoemaker in Sanquhar, September 7, 1758; Alex. 
Fergusson, Esq. of Craigdarroch, July 22, 1760; John Maxwell, 
Esq. of Terraughtie, 1766; William Maxwell, second son of the 
above, 1776 ; His Grace William, Duke of Queensberry, Septem- 
ber 7, 1779: William Purdie, surgeon in Sanquhar, September 
30, 1782 : Patrick Miller, Escj., younger of Dalswinton, October 
5, 1789; Robert Riddell, Esq. of Glenriddell, November 12, 
1789; Charles Maxwell of Carruchan, November 12, 1789; John 
Rigg, Crawick Forge, February 22, 1790; William Wallace, 
writer, Dumfries, October, 1790; (juintin M'Adam, Esq. of 
Waterside, January 22, 1791; Francis Shortt, town clerk of Dum- 
fries, June 2, 1792; Mr Hamilton, writer in Dumfries, April, 
1793 ; Mr Blair, late Provost of Dumfries, Septen)ber, 1793 ; Mr 
Laidlaw, writer in Dumfries, September 9, 1793 ; Alexander 
Findlater, supervisor of Excise, July i, 1794 ; Quintin M'Adam 
of Craigingillan, January 19, 1795 ; David Newall of Bushyhank, 
October 15, 1795 ; John Whigham, son of Provost Whigham, 
September 30, 1799; Crawford Tait, W.S., of Harvieston, 
October 5, 1801. 

Of the members of the Town Council as above Burns was on 
particularly friendly terms with Provost Whigham, Mr Barker, Mr 
M'Murdo, Mr Johnston, and Mr Taylor. The following brief 

notes concerning them and some of the burgesses named may not 
be out of place : — 

Provost Edward Whigham was the landlord of the Queens- 
berry Arms Inn, where Burns stayed when in Sanquhar. He 
took a leading part in the affairs of the town, and was Provost 
from 1793 till 1800. He was a great reader, and possessed an 

Queensberry Arms Hotel — Burns's Howff at Sanquhar. 

excellent library. Burns, on his first journey into Nithsdale, 
made the acquaintance of the host of the " Queensberry Arms," 
and the warmest friendship resulted. The Poet was a frequent 
inmate of the hostelry. He wrote verses upon its window panes 
— " Ye gods, ye gave to me a wife," and " Envy, if thy jaundice 
eye." Here one evening he recited to a group of admirers his 
popular song, " Of a' the airts the win' can blaw," which he 



had composed during the day while looking westward to Ayr- 
shire, and thinking of his wife, 15onnie Jean. He had to take his 
departure from its comfortable shelter one wintry night to make 
room for the funeral cortege of Mrs Oswald of Auchencruive, an 
occasion that gave rise to the bitter ode, "Dweller in yon dungeon 
dark." In the inn a drinking contest similar to the famous bout 
at Friars' Carse took place a few days after the latter, when Burns 
had the celebrated " Whistle " on loan from Fergusson of Craig- 
darroch. The contestants were the Poet, Provost Whigham, Mr 
William Johnston, Mr Thomas Barker, Mr John Rigg, and Mr 
John King, a peripatetic music-teacher — the victor being Mr 
William Johnston. Mr Whigham was presented by Burns with 
a copy of the first edition of his Poems, the valuable book being 
now in the possession of Mr J. R. Wilson, solicitor, Sanquhar. 
He also received from the Poet manuscript copies of several 
songs, one of which, " Muirland Meg," a lilt of the " Merry 
Muses " type, is also in Mr Wilson's possession. Provost 
Whigham died 3rd October, 1823, aged 73 years. 

Mr Thomas Barker was the lessee of certain coal-fields in 
Sanquhar. He was a son-in-law of Mr Johnston, the laird of 
Roundstonefoot. In Burns's time he held the farm of Newark, 
but latterly he removed to Bridge-end, Crawick. He was long 
connected with the Town Council, as was his father before him, 
and at various times held the offices of Dean of Guild, Bailie, 
and Treasurer. One of his daughters, Susan (afterwards Mrs 
James Otto), was the sweetheart of James Hyslop, author of 
" The Cameronian's Dream." Mr Barker died 30th October, 
1825, aged 65 years. 

Mr John M'Murdo was chamberlain to the Duke of Queens- 
berry, and was resident at Drumlanrig, and latterly at Dumfries. 
He had a long connection with Sanquhar burgh, having been a 
member of the Town Council from 1780 to 1796. From his 
first coming into Nithsdale, Burns was ever a welcome guest at 
Drumlanrig. He held " Factor John " and his " lovely spouse " 
in high esteem, and in praise of their daughters, Jean and Phillis, 
he wrote some beautiful songs, among which may be mentioned 


'' There was a lass, and she was fair,' " Phillis, the Fair," and 
" Adown winding Nith." 

Mr William Johnston, the laird of Roundstonefoot, in Upper 
Annandale, held the extensive sheep farm of Clackleith, and 
latterly Blackaddie farm, both in the parish of Sanquhar. He 

Provost William Johnston. 

From the painting in possession of his great-grandson, T. B. Steuart, 
Esq. of Pennjland, Sainiuhar. (.J. M. Laing, Photographer.) 

was a talented classical scholar and an accomplished musician, 
and Burns enlisted his aid in the collection of the traditionary 
music of the country. Mr Johnston was the "trusty auld worthy, 
Clackleith," of the Postscript to "The Kirk's Alarm," and in a 
note to Provost Edward VVhigham, Burns refers to him as " that 
worthy veteran of original wit and social iniquity." He had a 


long connection with Sanquhar's municipal affairs, and was 
Provost 1791-93. Provost U'illiam Johnston died 7th October, 
1820, aged 87 years. 

Mr John Taylor was the overseer of the lead mines at Wan- 
lockhead, and it was by his permission and direction that Burns 
got his horse's shoes "frosted" on the memorable occasion of his 
journey up Mennock Pass on a winter day, when, with his friend 
Mr Sloan, he sat down in Ramage's Inn at Wanlockhead and 
penned the lines beginning " With Pegasus upon a day." I.atterly 
Mr Taylor became the tenant of Castle Mains farm, Sanquhar. 
He had a brother, James Taylor, whose name is associated with 
that of William Symington, of Leadhills, in the invention of the 
steamboat. John Taylor died 14th October, 1806, aged 53 

Mr Robert Whigham was a man of great energy, sound 
judgment, and undoubted probiLy. He was much respected by 
the townspeople of Sanquhar, was very successful in business, 
and became the principal merchant in the burgh. He w^as 
Provost for the long period of 17 years — from 1772 till 1789. He 
died 7th January, 18 15, aged 77 years. 

Alexander Fergusson, Esq. of Craigdarroch, an eminent 
advocate, was the son of James Fergusson of Craigdarroch, cham- 
berlain to the Duke of Queensberry, a gentleman who had been 
a member of Sanquhar Town Council for 29 years, viz., from 
1743 till 1772, during which period he sat twelvemonths as a 
Bailie — 1746-47, and 15 years as Burgh Treasurer, 1745-46 and 
1748-62. Alexander Fergusson was a member of the Council in 
1772-73 and irC 1 790-94. Burns described him as being "famous 
for wit, worth, and law." It was upon the death of his son 
James that the Poet wrote "The Mother's Lament." 

John Maxwell, Esq. of Terraughtie, was treasurer of Sanquhar 
Burgh from 1766 till Michaelmas, 1780. He is the " Teuch 
Johnnie" of the second of the " Heron Election Ballads," and to 
him Burns indited a poem on his 71st birthday. He died 25th 
January, 1814, in his 94th year. 


Mr William Maxwell, second son of the laird of Terraughtie, 
was a member of the Town Council from 1776 till 1780. 

His Grace William Duke of Queensberry, the notorious 
*' Old Q," was responsible for the braes of Upper Nithsdale 
being stripped of their trees, a piece of vandalism that gave occa- 
sion for Burns to write the poem beginning, "As on the banks o' 
winding Nith." The destruction of the trees on the banks of 
the Nith was prompted purely by the Duke's vicious sentiments 
towards the Scotts of Buccleuch, who succeeded the Douglases in 
the Dukedom. " Old Q " meant to have swept off all the fine 
ornamental trees round Drumlanrig Castle as well as the timber 
on Nithside, and they were actually put up to public auction and 
sold. But the county men around clubbed together to save them. 
By a clause in the articles of sale the purchaser was bound to 
cut all the trees within a year from the date of the purchase. 
The first purchaser was Mr Menteith, afterwards Sir Charles 
Menteith of Closeburn. When his term of grace was drawing to 
a close he sold it to another man, and the same thing was 
repeated from year to year until the old Duke died, when the 
Buccleuch family refunded the purchase money. Thus were the 
Drumlanrig woods saved. "Old Q" died 23rd December, 
1810, in his 86th year. 

Dr William Purdie was a native of Calder, in Midlothian. 
He practised as a surgeon and accoucheur in Sanquhar and 
district for the long period of 52 years. Along with a friend he 
was in the company of Burns in the inn at Brownhill on the 
occasion when the story of a wayworn soldier inspired the Poet to 
write the well-known and ever-popular song, " When wild war's 
deadly blast was blawn." He was a member of the Town 
Council for three years, 1782-85. Dr Purdie died at Edinburgh 
oti the 7th March, 1831, in his 78th year. 

Patrick Miller, Esq., younger of Dalswinton, a Captain in 
the Army, was the son of Burns's landlord. He is the hero of the 
" Five Carlines " ballad, where our ancient burgh is dubbed 
^' Black Joan," and in the election in 1790, which gave rise to the 

ballad, he defeated the sitting Member, Sir James Johnstone of 
Westerhall, and represented the Dumfries Burghs till 1796. 

Robert Riddell, Esq. of Cilenriddell, at whose residence of 
Friars' Carse the celebrated " Whistle " contest took place on 
October i6th, 1789. He was an eminent antiquary, and wrote 
much upon the arch;v;ology of the South of Scotland. He died 
2 1 St April, 1794. 

Mr Jolin Rigg of Crawick Forge was one of Burns's earliest 
and most intimate acquaintances in Upper Nithsdale, and when 
the Poet entered upon the farm of Ellisland he sup[)lied him with 
a stock of farming implements. Mr Rigg was wont to relate how 
he and the Bard came to know each other. It came about in 
this fashion. He was the owner of a copy of Burns's Poems, and 
one day, after dinner, he was deeply absorbed in the book and 
failed to notice the entrance of a stranger, who remained perfectly 
still, for he knew the book, and marked the evident gratification 
it afforded the reader. The stranger was Robert Burns. He 
asked of Rigg what was the nature of the book that seemed to 
take such a deep hold upon him. Rigg, after an apology for 
keeping a stranger waiting, replied that he had been reading the 
" Poems of a fellow called Burns. They're very clever," he 
added, " and if I had the man here who wrote them I would like 
to shake him by the hand and stand him a good drink." Burns 
made himself known, and a lasting friendship was the result. 
John Rigg was a member of Sanrjuliar Town Council 1796-98, 
and (cr many years took an active part in the affairs of the Incor- 
porated Trades, being convener 1797 98, and returned Deacon of 
the Hammermen at nineteen of the annual elections. He died 
ist April, 1833, in the 83rd year of his age. 

The remaining names on the list will be more or less known 
to those familiar with the life of the Poet ; but, as having a more 
close connection with Sanquhar burgh, I may add that " David 
Blair, Esq., late Provost of Dumfries," was a member of the 
Town Council from September 30, 1793, to September 29, 1794, 
and that Mr Crawford Tait was on tiie Council for the twelve 
months from Michaelmas, 1801, till Michaehrias, 1802. 


John Whigham, the eldest son of Provost Edward Whigham, 
was the last survivor of Sanquhar burgesses who were acquainted 
with Burns. He remembered the Poet well, and my father has 
told me that John would recount with .pride how, when a boy, he 
had received a present of an orange from Burns. He died 19th 
Se])tember, 1857. 



DISCUSSING the Works of Bums some lime ago with a 
gentleman, whom I supposed to be fairly intelligent, I 
quoted the two following lines from " A Man's a Man for a' 
that " :— 

" The rank is but the guinea's stamp, 
The man's the gowd for a' that " — 

and, without thinking much about the question, asked him if he 
knew what they meant ? To my surprise he did not. He had 
often read the lines, and heard them quoted hundreds of times, 
and he thought that he understood their meaning. He was 
ignorant of his ignorance until my question was accidentally put to 
him. I had to tell him that the guinea was a gold coin, worth 
21/-, current in the days of Burns, who had taken his illustration 
of the worth of man, compared with his rank, from the process of 
minting. What Burns meant was, that as the value of a guinea 
was the gold of which it was composed, and not merely the super- 
scription giving its value which was stamped upon it, so it was by 
the possession of the essential qualities of manhood, and not by 
social position, that the worth of a man was to be estimated. 

There must be few people so ill-informed in this particular 
respect as the gentleman to whom I have referred, but at the 
same time there must be a vast number of others, not at all 
ignorant of Burns, who do not understand many lines and verses 
in his Works, because of a lack of eighteenth century knowledge. 
For example. Burns claimed to possess the spirit of independence, 
and he voiced that claim both in verse and prose ; but how can 
this attitude be reconciled, on a first reading at any rate, with 
what he says in his " Epistle to Davie " ? — 

" The last o"l, the warst o't, 
Is onl_\- but to heg." 


This, by the way, was not the only time that Burns expressed 
himself in this fashion. There is the couplet in the " Dedica- 
tion " of his Poems to Gavin Hamilton : — 

" And when I downa yoke a naig, 

Then, Lord be thankit, I can beg." 

In the context of the lines first quoted we are faced with a seem- 
ing contradiction, a declaration of independence combined with 
a willingness to descend without protest to what we regard as one 
of the meanest of occupations, viz., that of a beggar. If that is 
our reading of the lines perhaps we are wrong ; and it may be 
found on a closer acquaintance with their meaning that there was 
nothing inconsistent in this attitude of Burns. If we know how 
beggars were regarded in the eighteenth century we will not 
' marvel at the declaration of the Poet. 

Readers of The Antiquary may remember what Sir Walter 
Scott had to say about beggars of bygone generations, and as his 
words express what I want to be at, they may be quoted here. 
^' The old-remembered beggar, even in my own time, like the 
baccoch, or travelling cripple of Ireland, was," says Scott, " ex- 
pected to merit his quarters by something beyond an exposition 
of his distresses. He was often a talkative, facetious fellow, 
prompt at repartee, and not withheld from exercising his power 
that way by any respect of persons, his patched cloak giving him 
the privilege of the ancient jester. To be a guid cracker — that is, 
to possess talents for conversation — was essential to the trade of a 
' puir body ' of the more esteemed cla«s ; and Burns, who 
delighted in the amusement their discourses afforded, seems to 
have looked forward with gloomy firmness to the possibility of 
himself becoming one day or other a member of their itinerant 
society. . . . As the life of a Scottish mendicant of the eighteenth 
century," adds Scott, " seems to have been contemplated without 
much horror by Robert Burns, the author can hardly have erred in 
giving to ' Edie Ochiltree ' something of poetical character and 
personal dignity above the more abject of his miserable calling." 
These words of Scott give us a different idea of the mind of 
Burns. We see now that if he had become so far reduced as to 


need to beg he would have been able to give full value from 
his stores of wit and knowledge for the alms he received, so that 
it would be as much worth the while of the people to assist him 
as it would be for him to ask their help. In short, to the last 
Burns would be independent. The necessity of Burns being 
interpreted is thus apparent, and this necessity will become all 
the greater the further we are removed from the period in which 
he lived. It is with a view to elucidating some of the passages 
in Burns for the benefit of those who are unacquainted with 
things as they were in the eighteenth century that the following 
notes, which do not quite exhaust the subject, have been pre- 

Burns was a son of the soil, and it is appropriate that we 
should begin with those things with which he was earliest 
acquainted, and with which during the greater part of his life he 
was closely associated. There is a good deal about agriculture in 
the poems of Burns, which can only he understood by a know- 
ledge of the conditions of that industry in the eighteenth century. 
Those conditions were vastly different, of course, from what they 
are to-day, agriculture having shared in the progress which has 
taken place in all our industries within the past century and a 
quarter. If it were possible for Burns to return to Scotland 
to-day he would see little connection between the system in vogue 
now, and the methods which he and his fellow-farmers followed. 
He would be unable to see the relationship between a band of 
shearers, with their sickles, slowly but cheerfully working in the 
corn-field, and the American self-binder, which mows down more 
grain in an hour than a band of shearers would do in a day, and 
reduces the employees to a few men — one who drives the horses 
and attends to the reaper, and another one or two who put the 
bound sheaves into stooks. But let us deal first with the plough. 
The old Scots plough was a very clumsy implement, and under 
no possible circumstances could be drawn by two horses, like the 
ploughs of to-day. It was constructed of wood, with the excep- 
tion of the coulter and share, which were the only iron parts, 
whereas the plough of today is entirely made of iron unless — • 


and this is not always the case — the handles, which are covered 

with wood for the comfort of the ploughman in cold weather. 

The late Rev. Henry Grey Graham,. in his admirable work 

on the Social Life of Scotla?id in the Eighteenth Ce?itiiry, gives a 

description, which is worth quoting, of how the plough was worked. 

" Each plough," he says, " was drawn by four or six meagre oxen 

and two horses, like shelties, or even by twelve oxen, one or three 

or four abreast. As they dragged it along, a whole band of men 

attended to keep them going. One man, who held the plough, 

required to be strong enough to bear the shock of collision with 

' sit-fast ' stones ; another led the team, walking backwards in 

order to stop the cattle when the plough banged against a 

frequent boulder ; a third went in front with a triangular spade to 

' mend the land ' and fill up the hollows ; and yet a fourth, as 

'gaudsman,' was armed with a long pole with a sharp point to 

goad the lagging beasts, and was required to exercise his skill of 

loud, dear, tuneful whistling to stimulate them to their work. 

With all this huge cortege a plough scratched half an acre a day, 

and scratched it very poorly." This statement of Graham's with 

regard to the number of animals required to draw a plough is a 

general one, and was not applicable to the farm of Mossgiel. 

Burns, as we learn of his stock from "The Inventory " addressed 

to Mr Aiken, the surveyor of taxes in Ayr, used four horses : — 

" For carriage cattle, 
I have four brutes o' gallant mettle 
As ever drew before a pettle ; 
My Ian' afore's a guid auld has-been, 
And wight and wilfu' a' his days been. 
My Ian' ahin's a weel gaun fillie 
That aft has borne me hame frae Killie, 
My fur ahin's a wordy beast 
As e'er in tug or tow was traced : 
The fourth's a Highland Donald beastie, 
A d red-wud Kilburnie blastie." 

The particular names which the Poet gives to the horses, which 
were driven two a-breast, indicate their places at the plough. 
The right-hand horse of the back pair was the fur ahin, and its 
neighbour was the Ian' ahin, or fittie Ian',* which was the hardest 

Because it trort on the •' Ian'," not in the " fur " or furrow.— Ed. 


worked of the team, and this statement gives significance to two 
of the lines in "The Auld Farmer's New-Year's Morning Saluta- 
tion to his Auld Mare, Maggie " : — 

" Thou was a noble fittie laiv 

As e'er in tug or low was drawn." 

Bums does not specify, probably because of the exigencies of 
verse, the name of the right-hand horse of the front pair ; but I 
learn that it was called the fur afore, while the other horse was 
the Ian' afore. " My pleugh " also, says the auld farmer, 

" is now thy l)airn time a", 
Four gallant brutes as e'er did draw," 

and by that he meant that his four plough horses were all the 
progeny of Maggie. 

While Burns used only horses for ploughing, it was the 
custom in Ayrshire, as in Scotland generally, to put oxen in the 
team, and this explains certain allusions which we find in his 
songs. Thus, in the song " Guid Ale keeps the Heart Aboon,' 
we read : — 

"I had sax owscn in a pleugh, 
.And they a' drew weel aneugh ;" 

and in the opening lines of the better known, " iMy ain Kind 
Dearie," we have another reference to the same custom : — 

" When o'er the hill the eastern star 
Tells bughtin' time is near, my Jo, 
And owsen frae the furrowed field 
Return sae dowff and weary, O." 

Buglilin' time, it may be said here, will also probably need to 
be interpreted to some [)eople. It referred to the hour, morning 
or evening, when the ewes were milked, and many references to 
it are to be found in old Scottish song. This, for example, is the 
opening verse of an old song by an unknown author : — 

" The yellow-haired laddie sat on yon burn brae, 
Cries ' Milk the ewes, lassie, let nane of them gae.' 
And aye she milked, and aye she sang, 
' The yellow-haired laddie shall be my guid man.' " 


One of Lady Grizel Baillie's songs begins :— 

" O the ewe bughtin's bonnie, both e'ening and morn, 

When our blythe shepherds play on the bog-reed and horn ; 
While we're milking they're lilting, baith pleasant and clear, 
But my heart's like to break when I think on my dear." 

Then, there are few but know the verses in Jean EUiot's plaintive 
song :— 

" I've heard the lilting at our ewe milking, 
Lassies a-lilting before the dawn of day ; 
But now they are moaning on ilka green loaning — 
' The flowers of the forest are a' wede away. ' 

At buchts in the morning nae blythe lads are scorning. 

The lassies are lonely and dowie and wae ; 
Nae daffin', nae gabbin', but sighing and sabbing. 

Ilk ane lifts her leglen* and hies her away." 

But, to return to the main theme, the statement of Grey- 
Graham with regard to the amount of ploughing done is a general 
one. Some farmers did more, others less, according to the 
quality of the soil. That, of course, is the case to-day as well as 
in the eighteenth century. Burns and his team ploughed more 
than half a Scots acre a day. " Aft thee and I," to quote again 

from the auld farmer, 

" in aught hours gaun, 
On guid March weather, 
Hae turned sax rood beside our haun, 
For days thegither. 

From this it is to be inferred that Burns could plough an acre 
and a half a day, which, says Mr A. B. Todd, "is no exaggera- 
tion, as in our younger days we had it from the mouths of those 
who were contemporaries of Burns, my own father being only 
nine years his junior, as well as acquainted with him. The 
plough was driven at great speed, especially when being worked 
on stubble land, and turned over a furrow twenty inches or two 
feet broad." Mr Todd, it is interesting to note, also says that 
" although Burns never succeeded well as a farmer he had a 
perfect knowledge of the best methods then in use, and never 
once have we found him in error when writing on any agricultural 

* Pail or milk-cog.— Ed. 


From " The Inventory " we also learn the number of men 
servants Burns had about his farm, and the work which it was 
their duty h) i)erform : — 

" For men, I've three mischievous boys, 
Run deils for rantin' an' for noise ; 
A i^audsman ane, a thresher t'other, 
Wee Davock hauds the nowt in fother." 

The gaudsman was John Blane, who must always interest us, 
because, but for his impulse to kill the mouse which the plough 
turned out of its nest, one of the most charming poems of Burns 
might not have been written. Grey Graham's statement that the 
gaudsman, besides having to goad on the horses or oxen that 
pulled the plough, " was required to exercise his skill of loud, 
clear, tuneful whistling to stimulate them to their work " is illus- 
trated by a song of Burns which I shall pardy quote : — 

" Young Jockey was the blythest lad 
In a' our town or here awa' ; 
Fu' blythe he whistled at the gaud, 
Fu' lightly danced he in the ha'. 

My Jockey toils upon the plain, 

Through wind and weet, and frost and snaw ; 

And o'er the lea I look fu' fain 

When Jockey's owsen hanieward ca'. " 

This musical part of the gaudsman's duty, it may be remarked in 
passing, gave rise to a north-east country saying — " Muckle 

whistlin' and little red Ian'." 

It may be also mentioned at this point that the land was 
cultivated in ridges or rigs from twenty to forty feet broad, each 
alternate ridge belonging to a different tenant, and " half of the 
width of the ridges and the ground between them," to quote 
again from Grey Graham's book, " were taken up with huge baulks 
or open spaces filled with briars, nettles, stones, and water." In 
Chambers's edition of Burns, edited by Dr Wallace, " baulk " is 
interpreted as "an open space in a corn-field," while Scott 
Douglas less accurately describes it as " a thorn fringed footpath 


through a cultivated field." This may be the baulk to which the 
Poet refers in the song beginning : — 

" A rose-bud by my early walk 
Adown a corn-enclosed baulk, 
Sae gently bent its thorny stalk 
All on a dewy morning." 

The old Scots rigs were "gathered " at the " crown," the " furs " 
between being used for drainage and also as receptacles for stones 
and rubbish. Between each " rig " there was consequently a 
space not sown, upon which the natural grass grew. This was 
called a " baulk," up which the cows were occasionally driven 
tethered by the horns, each in charge of a boy, who checked them 
by the rope if they attempted to snatch a mouthful of the growing 

This style of agriculture was abandoned long ago. Farmers 
may be fond enough of roses ; but up-to-date methods of agricul- 
ture do not permit of such a waste of corn acreage, and so the 
old Scots " rigs " have been levelled in most localities. 

In two of the quotations which I have just given the phrase 
" tug or tow " occurs, and I think it needs to be interpreted to 
most readers of Burns. It means that the traces were made of 
raw hide and rope, leather harness not coming into use till the 
century was pretty far advanced. 

One who had only knowledge of the most modern methods 
of harvesting with the self-binder, to which I have already referred, 
would have some difficulty in understanding the opening lines in 
the " Epistle to the Guidwife of Wauchope House " : — 

" I mind it weel in early date . . . 
When first amang the yellow corn 

A man I reckoned was ; 
And wi' the lave ilk merry morn 

Could rank my rig and lass. 
Still shearing and clearing 

The tither stookit raw ; 
Wi' claivers and haivers 

Wearing the time awa'. " 

We are presented in these lines with a picture of rural life which 


has quite passed away — a picture which most of us have probably 
never seen — the merry band of reapers, all animated by a healthy 
rivalry (" kempin" " it was called), each one doing his or her best 
for the pure love of the thing, and led on by the "stibble rig," 
who was the foremost reaper. The lines in "Hallowe'en" will recur 
to you : — 

" Our htibhle rig was Kab M'Graen, 
A clever, sturdy fallow.'' 

There is little or no likelihood of the love passion being stirred in 
the harvest field in the twentieth century —the self-binder has 
destroyed the romance of harvesting. 

In the eighteenth century, and indeed up till nearly our OAvn 
times, the ingathering of the harvest was celebrated by a " Kirn," 
which was a social meeting of the farmer and his household. 
Burns has several allusions to those joyous gatherings. Thus, 
in "The Twa Dogs," Luath, in telling his friend Caesar that 
"poor folk's no sae wretched's ane wad think," points to the 
kirn as one of the occasions of happiness among the peasantry. 
It is to be regretted that Burns, who was such a master at painting 
the manners and customs of the people did not give us a descrip- 
tion of a kirn, with which he was so familiar. He must have 
been present at many a one in his own father's house, and we 
know, on the authority of Robert Ainslie, his Edinburgh friend, 
that when he went to his farm at Ellisland he did not forget to 
entertain his household in this way. Ainslie visited him at such 
a time, and in a letter to Mrs M'Lehose he wrote — " We spent 
the evening in the way common on such occasions of dancing, 
and kissing the lassies at the end of every dance " — doubtless a 
very agreeable way to Ainslie, who was about as fond of " the 
sex •' as the Poet himself. There was, of course, plenty to eat 
and plenty to drink. 

" That merry night we get the corn in, 
O sweetly then thou reams the horn in," 

says Burns, in his eulogy of " Scotch drink," a beverage about 
which I shall have something to say later on. With so much 


dancing the fiddler was indispensable, and the " pigmy scraper," 

one of the " Jolly Beggars," sings : — 

" At kirns and weddings vve'se be there, 
And oh ! sae nicely's we will fare ; 
We'll bouse about till Daddy Care 

Sings 'Whistle o'er the lave o't.' " 

The grain, having been gathered into the stackyard, was 
laboriously threshed with the flail, a huge kind of whip used 
by the hand, with a wooden batten for lash hinged on to the 
handle, still to be found in some of the remote parts of Scotland. 
It is the flail which Burns means when he refers to " the thresher's 
weary flinging tree :" but though the work was tiresome he was 
proud to be able to perform it. To quote again from the " Epistle 
to the Guidwife of Wauchope House ": — 

" I mind it weel in early date, 
When I was beardless, young, and blate. 

And first could thresh the barn," 
Or haud a yokin' at the pleugh, 
And though forfoughten sair eneugh 
Vet unco proud to learn." 

It was with the flail that poor " John Barleycorn " was so sorely 
belaboured : — 

" They laid him down upon his back 
And cudgelled him full sore." 

The threshing mill, with which experiments had been made before 
Burns became a farmer, was brought to a state of perfection in 
1787, though the Poet does not appear to have used it either at 
Mossgiel or at EUisland. Another implement which had been 
invented before his time, and which he made no use of, was 
fanners, which was much more eff'ective for separating the corn 
from the chaff than the old process of winnowing. The corn was 
thrown into the air on the winnowing hill, or " shealing law," and 
the wind carried away the chaff, the operation being repeated till 
the corn was clean. So it happened with " John Barleycorn " 
after he had been cudgelled full sore that 

" They hung him up before the storm 
And turned him o'er and o'er." 


The grain was thrown into the air with a " wecht," a thing like a 
huge tambourine, to which we have a reference in "Hallowe'en ": — 

" Meg fain wad to the barn gane 

To win three wechls o' naething." 

But winnowing was not a perfect process, and so 

" The cleanest corn that e'er was dight 
May hae some piles o' caff in. " 

It is amusing, by the way, at this date to look back upon the 
opposition which was aroused by the introduction of the fanners, 
which, the pious declared, was a way of raising the devil's wind. 
One remembers the indignation of Mause Headrigg at Cuddie 
Headrigg's working in the barn " wi' a newfangled machine for 
dightin' the corn frae the chaff, thus impiously thwarting the will 
o' Divine Providence." 

In some old barns are still to be seen two doors, placed in a 
straight line on opposite sides of the building, for the purpose of 
creating a draught of air when open. The winnowers stood in 
this draught with the "wechts" and tossed the grain upwards, the 
full ears falling to the floor, while the husks were blown into the- 
adjacent " caff" house, or at least in its direction. 

In the early part of the eighteenth century the grinding of 
the corn was done under a system which entailed great hardship 
on the farmer, whose land was " thirled " to a particular mill, to 
which every particle of the grain, except what was reserved for 
seed, had to be sent. The miller exacted heavy dues in kind, 
and if the farmer sold his grain before it was ground he was 
subjected to prosecution for depriving the miller of his rights. 
This system had happily ceased to exist in most parts of the 
country at the time Burns wrote, and Ayrshire was tolerably free 
from it, if we may judge by the experience of Tarn o' Shanter, 
who, instead of regarding the miller as one of his natural enemies, 
ranked him, along with the Souter of Ayr, as an " ancient, trusty, 
drouthy crony." 

" Ilka melder wi' the miller, 

Thou sat as lang as thou had siller, "" 

was the charge, doubtless well founded, brought against the 


tenant of Shanter farm by his afflicted helpmate. In earlier days 

the journeyings to the mill — whether to leave the grain or to take 

away the meal — was a duty unwillingly performed ; but in the 

closing years of the century better times had come for both the 

farmer and the miller, who, in true Scottish fashion, celebrated 

their prosperity and growing friendship by drinking drams. 

^' Thirling," though still legally binding in some places, has fallen 

into desuetude, and is now very seldom insisted on. 

But let us turn now to another phase of the subject. I mean 

spinning and weaving. There is a well-known verse in the 

" Epistle to J. Lapraik " : — 

" On Fasteneen we had a rockin,' 
To ca' the crack and weave our stockin' ; 
And there was muckle fun and jokin', 

Ye need na doubt ; 
Ai length we had a hearty yokin', 

At sang about." 

The word " rockin' " really takes us back to a time prior to 
Burns. In those early days the refined flax or tow, as the Scotch 
stalled it, was spun on the distaff or rock, which was a very port- 
able instrument, and women calling on their neighbours were in 
the habit of taking their rocks with them, so that they might spin 
as well as talk, and spend the time profitably. The lads, of 
course, went where the lassies were, and carried their rocks, 
pretty much, I suppose, as the young men carry the umbrellas of 
the girls now a days. This was called going a-rockin', and when 
the distaff gave place to the spinning-wheel, and such gatherings 
became for the most part simply social, the name was retained. 
Thus it was in the days of Burns. But the spinning-wheel, 
though it was an unwieldy article, was sometimes carried to such 
a meeting. Witness the song " Duncan Davison " : — 

" There was a lass, they ca'd her Meg, 

And she held o'er the moors to spin ; 
There was a lad that followed her, 

They ca'd him Duncan Davison. 
The moor was dreigh, and Meg was skeigh, 

Her favour Duncan couldna win ; 
For wi' the rock she wad him knock, 

And aye she took the temper pin. 


As o'er the moor they lightly foor, 

A burn was clear, a glen was green, 
Upon the banks they eas'd their shanks, 

And aye she set the wheel between ; 
But Duncan swoor a haly aiih 

That Meg should be a bride the morn. 
Then W&i took up her spinnin' graith, 

And tiang them a' cjut o'er the burn." 

The flax spun by the women was commonly known as lint, 
Avhich was widely grown in Scotland in the eighteenth century, 
though it is rarely that one comes across a field of it in this 
country in these days, the supply for the linen mills being 
imported. When, therefore, Burns addressed a song to the 
" Lassie wi' the lint white locks," and the mother, in "The 
Cottar's Saturday Night," informed the bashful youth who had 
come to convoy Jenny hame that her " weel hained kebbuck " 
was " a towmond auld sin' lint was in the bell," he was using 
figurative language that everybody could understand, but the 
meaning of which we of the twentieth century will fail to grasp if 
we know nothing about flax-growing in the time of Burns. The 
process of teasing or refining flax was called " heckling " — a word 
used now, I fear, only at election meetings — which was a common 
trade throughout the country. Burns, it will be remembered, was 
a heckler in Irvine for some time. An oblong board with small 
steel spikes or stiff wires inserted, giving it the appearance of a 
huge clothes brush, known as a heckle, was used for this purpose, 
and tinklers found employment in putting new spikes into the 
frames when the old ones had worn out or were damaged. With- 
out this explanation the meaning of Burns's song, " Merry hae I 
been teething a heckle," may be obscure : — 

" (J merry hae I ])een teelhin' a heckle, 

And merry hae I been shapin' a spoon ; 
O merry hae I been cloutin' a kettle, 

An' kissin' my Katie when a' was done." 

The manufacture of flax into tow, from which the thread was 
spun, is illustrated by one of the humorous songs of Burns, and it 
may be quoted in full : — 


" I bought my wife a stane o' lint, 
As guid as e'er did grow ; 
And a' that she has made o' that, 
Is ae poor pund o' tow. 

The weary pund, the weary pund, 
The weary pund o' tow ; 
I think my wife will end her life 
Before she spin her tow. 

There sat a bottle in a hole, 

Beyont the ingle lowe ; 
An aye she took the tither souk, 

To drouk the stourie tow. 

Quoth I, ' For shame, ye dirty dame, 

Gae spin your tap o' low ! ' 
She took the rock, and wi' a knock, 

She brak it o'er my pow. 

At last her feet — I sang to see't — 

Gaed foremost o'er the knowe ; 
And 'or I wad anither jad, 

I'll wallop in a tow." 

Weaving must now be noticed very briefly. After the thread 
— linen out of lint, and yarn out of sheep's wool — had been spun 
it had to be woven into cloth, and this work was performed by 
the peasantry in their own homes, where the commonest sound 
was the clack of the loom. Latterly the weaving of the cloth was 
left to the customer weaver or " wabster,'" who wove for a local 
clientele. Up to a recent date, in some districts of Ayrshire, the 
farmers sent their wool to a spinning mill, where it was made into 
cloth, called " home-spun." The more ancient custom is 
illustrated in " Willie Wastle " : — 

" Willie was a wabster guid, 

Cou'd stown a clue* wi' ony bodie ; " 

from which it may be inferred that " cabbaging " of customers 
property was not confined to tailors. The introduction of power- 
loom weaving and the erection of huge factories destroyed this 
simple employment of the people, and by the end of the 
eighteenth century hand-loom weaving was doomed. Every 
grown person of any intelligence knows this, but the rising genera- 

' stolen a ball of yarn. 


tion nia\- not be aware of it, and tlie understanding of some of 

the songs of Burns depends on this knowledge. For instance, 

here are several verses from the song " To the Weavers gin ye 

go " :— 

" My niither sent me to the town 
To warp a plaiden wab ; 
But the weary, weary warpin' o't 
Has gart me sigh and sub. 

A bonnie westlan' weaver lad 

Sat workin' at his loom ; 
He took my heart as wi' a net 

In every knot and thrum. 

I sat beside my warpin' wlieel, 

And aye I ca'd it roun' ; 
But every shot and every knock 

My heart it gae a stoun." 

A similar hint is conveyed in " Robin shore in hairst " : — 

" As I gaed up to Dunse 

To warp a wab o' plaidin'." 

This consideration of spinning and weaving may be followed 
by some explanations regarding the clothing of the people, and a 
number of lines of Burns in this respect require to be elucidated. 
Thus, in " The Ronalds of the l.ennals," describing his own gay 
attire, he says : — 

" My sarks they are few, but five o' tliem new, 
Twal' hundred as white as the snaw, man." 

The Poet is not here enumerating, as one puzzled reader supposes 
he was, the number of his shirts, but only informing us of the 
quality of the material. " Twal' hundred " was the term used to 
denote a coarse linen woven in a reed of 1200 divisions. The 
finer stuff had 500 extra divisions, and was " the snaw-white 
seventeen hundred linen " referred to in " Tarn o' Shanter." 
Though the Poet, who must have been regarded as something of 
a " masher " by his neighbours, wore "a ten shillings hat" the 
common head-gear was a bonnet, which was worn not only by 
peasants, but also by those well-to-do farmers who owned the 
land which they cultivated, and were consecjuently known as 


" bonnet lairds." It did duty on Sunday as well as on the other 
days of the week, and in the " Holy Faii; " we have a picture of 
the elder at the plate, his head covered not with a "lum hat" but 
a black bonnet : — • 

" A greedy glower Black Bonnet throws, 
And we maun draw our tippence." 

This allusion to the collection does not mean that two pennies 
sterling were put into the plate instead of the popular bawbee ; 
the contribution was much smaller than that, as will appear from 
the explanations to be found further on of the currency of the 
day. That the head of the minister was protected like that of a 
humble member of his flock we learn from this line : — 

" Gown, and ban', and douce black bonnet." 

The bodies of the peasantry were commonly clothed with hodden 

grey, a rough home-spun wool, and, of course, they did not wear 

trousers, which were not invented till after the days of Burns, but 

knee-breeches, which are the " bracks " referred to in " Tarn 

Glen " :— 

"The verra grey breeks o' Tarn Glen." 

and in " Tam o' Shanter " : — 

" Thir breeks o' mine, my only pair, 

That ance were plush o' guid blue hair." 

Stockings were worn with the breeks, and it was this garb which 

made possible the happy custom referred to in " Hallowe'en."' 

Lads who went courting indicated their intentions by a bab of 

ribbons attached to their garters. Thus : — 

" The lads, sae trig, wi' wooer babs 
Weel knotted on their garten." 

One eighteenth century custom alluded to by Burns, and 

now a thing of the past, lingered so far into the nineteenth 

century that middle-aged people will have some recollection of it, 

though it must be quite unknown to the rising generation. This 

was the use of weepers— linen bands round the sleeves at the 

wrist — as the sign of deep mourning : — 

" Auld cantie Kyle may weepers wear, 
And stain them wi' the saut, saut tear." 


The outward show of mourning was greater then than it is now. 
Great bobs of crape were worn at funerals, and " Robin's bonnet 
waved wi' crape for Maih'e dead." 

Burns has very little to say regarding the dress of the gentler 
sex : it was their personal charms, and not the way they were 
decked out that attracted him. Vet there are one or two allusions 
which will be obscure to those unfamiliar with the fashions of the 
eighteenth century. In the poem, " To a Louse," he says : — 

" I wadna been surpris'd lo spy 
Vou on an auld wife's flainen toy ; 
Or aihlins some bit duddie boy, 

On's wylecoat* ; 
But Miss's fine Lunardi, fye I 

How daur ye d'ot ?" 

A toy was an old-fashioned cap made of flannel, and it hung down 
the back of the neck like the caps of British soldiers in tropical 
countries. As a rule, however, women went about with their 
heads bare. The " Lunardi '" is a reminder that the problem of 
aerial flight is not one the solution of which belongs only to the 
early years of the twentieth century. Even in the days of Burns 
men were engaged in the conquest of the air, and some, he says: — • 

" Are mind't in things they ca' balloons 
To tak' a flight, 
iVn' stay ae month among the moons, 
An' see them right." 

One of the first, if not the first, to make a balloon ascent in 
Scotland was Vincenzo Lunardi, a young man who was Secretary 
to the Neapolitan Ambassador in London; and his voyages in the 
air creating no small sensation, the leaders of feminine fashion, 
anxious then as now to introduce some new style, appeared in 
balloon-shaped bonnets, which were known by his nauie. 

Another explanation legarding the feminine mode of dressing 
may be made here. The young women of the eighteenth century 
were as fond of finery as those who have come after them ; but 
they were not so well off, and in the care of their clothing they 
had to exercise a degree of economy which is not now practised. 

Flannel vest. 


Country girls going to the kirk left home barefooted, carrying 
their shoes and stockings in their hands, until they neared the 
place of worship, when they sat down by the side of a stream, 
washed their feet, and put on their footwear. Thus the Poet on 
being conducted to " The Holy Fair " at Mauchline saw : — 

" The lassies, skelpin' barefit, thrang, 
In silks and scarlet glitter." 

On the way home the shoes were taken off again at the first 
opportunity : — 

" At slaps the billies halt a blink, 
Till lasses strip their shoon." 

The people obtained some of their clothing from chapmen — 
that is, packmen — who are still to be found plying their trade in 
the more remote parts of the country. In those days they met 
their customers in the market, as well as called upon them in 
their homes : — 

" When chapmen billies leave the street, 

As market days are wearin' late." 

Superior kind of packmen were called " troggers " or " trokers," 
and the goods which they sold were known by the general name 
of '' troggin " : — 

" Wha will buy my troggin ?" 

The cloth that the country people bought was made into 
wearing apparel by tailors who travelled from house to house, 
measuring and cutting and sewing until the needs of the family were 
supplied. The tailor's visit, which was arranged weeks in advance, 
was naturally an event of great importance, and during his short 
stay "the knight of the needle" lived on the best which his 
employers had to give, while he more than repaid their attention 
by retailing the latest gossip and liberally drawing on his fund of 
entertaining stories. " The itinerant tailor," as Hugh Haliburton 
says, " was the theme of many a rustic song, composed at his 
'expense, and sung in his absence. Amatory escapades, to which 
he was rather prone, frum n nature peculiarly susceptible of female 


charms, were a favourite subject of those compositions." Thus 
Burns : — 

" The tailor he cam' here to sew, 
And weel he ken'd the way to woo. " 

We now turn our attention from the way in which the people 
were clothed to the food by which they were sustained, and here 
we find that much that Burns says has to be interpreted to the 
twentieth century reader. In looking into this part of our subject 
we get a very clear idea of the great advance which has been 
made in the standard of living during the past hundred 
years. The working-classes to-day fare luxuriously compared 
with those in a similar position in the eighteenth century. The 
best that the land produced did not go to those who tilled it, but 
to the laird, whose rent was chiefly paid in kind — that is, in eggs, 
poultry, and grain. The poorest kind of food was drummock, 
which was simply oatmeal and cold water stirred about, and a 
most unappetising dish it must have been. 

" To tremble under Fortune's cummock, 
On scarce a bellyfu' o' drummock," 

was certainly as miserable a condition of life as may well be 


A better food was crowdie, composed of the same ingredients, 

but with this important difference, that the vvater was hot. The 

dish is now a days known as brose, and it is still occasionally used 

in households in Scotland ; but in the time of Burns it appeared 

to be the only sustenance of many families : — 

" Ance crowdie, twice crowdie, crowdie three times a day; 
Gin ye crowdie ony mair, ye'll crowdie a' my meal away." 

There were times when a little butter was added to the 
mixture, and there is the authority of " Auld Hawkie," the Glasgow 
gangrel, for saying that thus served crowdie made a "strong 

Another dish of which the present generation knows little or 
nothing was sowans, which were made from the soured '■ seconds '* 
of oatmeal, and eaten with milk. They formed a favourable 


Hallowe'en supper, but on that occasion they were taken with 
butter instead of milk, as we find from the concluding verse of 
the Poet's masterly description of that festival : — 

" Butter'd sowans, vvi' fragrant lunt, 
Set a' their gabs asteerin'. " 

One word in the two following lines from the eulogy on 

' Scotch Drink " may be misunderstood by readers of the present 

day : — 

" His wee drap parritch, or liis bread, 
Thou kitchens fine." 

The bread of which Burns here speaks is oatcake, and this use of 
the word is not yet obsolete in Scotland. In the house of my 
father, who was a Renfrewshire ploughman, I do not remember 
oatcake being ever called anything but " breed." When the 
wheatmeal loaf was meant we always said " loaf bread " : — 

" The carlin brocht her kebbuck* ben, 
Wi' girdle cakes weel toasted broon." 

Though everybody has heard of a haggis, and every loyal 
Burnsite has either tasted one, or what was alleged to be one, the 
dish is no longer an article of the common food of Scotsmen, 
and there must be multitudes of people who have neither gazed 
upon its "sonsie face" nor delved a horn spoon into its "gushing 
entrails." For the sake of these people it is necessary to explain 
that a haggis was composed of the minced offal of the sheep 
mixed with oatmeal and suet, and boiled in the stomach of the 
animal, skewered with a wooden pin : — 

" Your pin wad help to mend a mill 
In time o' need." 

The following words of the late Dr Lawson, of Selkirk, may be 
accepted as evidence of the savouriness of the haggis. " If I were 
a king," he said, " I do not know that I should live very much 
differently from what I do— only, perhaps I would have a haggis 
oftener to dinner." 

Barley as well as oats was ground into meal, which was of 
much finer quality than oatmeal, and hence the allusion to the 

'Gaelic for " cheese." 


" barley miller." Baked into scones or bannocks, it made a most 
nourishing food : — 

" On ihce aft Scotland chows her cood 
In souple* scones, the wale o' food." 
Wia in a brulzie will first cry a parley? 
Never the lads wi' the bannocks o' barley." 

Another kind of bannock was the mashlum, which was made 
from a mixture of all kinds of grain, and was very sustaining; but 
the presence of peas and beans, which gave it a dark colour, was 
against its popularity. 

" Tell yon guid bluid o' Auld Boconnocks 
ril l)e his debt Iwa mashlum bannocks," 

said Burns, and from this may be inferred the high value which he 
placed on this kind of bannock as a food. 

From food our thoughts naturally turn to drink. The 
eighteenth century has been described as "The golden age of 
Scottish drinking," and so there is a good deal to be found about 
the beverages of the country in the pages of the National Poet. 
The restrictions which are now imposed on the brewing of liquor 
did not then exist. "Till 1750," says Grey Graham, "the 
popular beverage was ale, or ' two-penny,' from its costing two- 
pence a Scotch pint, equal to two English quarts. It had been 
made in every farm, manse, and mansion, and drunk in the 
dining-room and in the change-house." Its manufacture was so 
common that it gave rise to a figure of speech. Thus, the " dame 
in wrinkled eild," counselling " blythe Bessie in the milking 
shitl " not to marry the poor man whom she loved, but to take 
one with plenty of gear whom she did not love, said : — 

" Some will spend and some will spare. 
And wilfu' folk maun hae their will ; 
Syne, as ye brew, my maiden fair, 

Keep mind that ye maun drink the yill." 

It was this home-brewing that made such a scene as that which 

took place when Burns, Nicol, and Masterton forgathered 

possible : — 

" O Willie brewed a peck o' maut, 

And Rob and Allan cam' to pree. " 

' Rolled out so thin that they doublwl u]) with their own weiarht. 


We live in better, or worse, times now — it all depends on the 
point of view ; and if Willie was to do in' the twentieth century 
what he did with impunity in the eighteenth he would be 
prosecuted for running an unlicensed brewery. Though the 
small-beer of Scotland was inspiring — 

" Wi' tippeny we fear nae evil," 

declared Burns — it was not so strong as the beer which is 
commonly drunk at the present day. Tea was only being intro- 
duced to the country, and beer was more frequently seen on the 
table at meal times than the now popular beverage : — 

" His wee drap panitch, or his bread, 
Thou kitchens fine." 

But beer was not always drunk cold, drawn from the tap " in 
cheerful tankards foaming." In winter it was sometimes hot- 
spiced, being served, for instance, 

" Reekin' on a New- Year's mornin' 
In cog or bicker," 

with a drop of whisky and a taste of sugar in it, which is what 
Burns means when he adds : — 

" An' just a wee drap spiritual burn in, 
An' gusty sucker !" 

The tax on malt imposed by Parliament in 1725, had a great 
effect on the drinking habits of the people. " Although the tax," to 
quote again from Grey Graham, " was made only 3d a bushel of 
malt, the rapid decrease in producing ale and in home-brewing 
is attributed to this impost, and certainly from that year the brew- 
ing of twopenny steadily declined, effectively to make way for the 
more potent drink of whisky, which was then almost unknown." 
It must be news to some to be told that there was a time when 
the Scotch people were ignorant of the qualities of whisky. 

But strange as the statement sounds, its truth cannot be 
doubted. Whisky had long been a favourite drink of the High- 
lander, who was the first, I think^ to discover the potent liquid ; 


l)Ut it was not till the middle of the eighteenth century that the 
Lowlandeis began to use it to any extent. There was a rapid 
increase in its consumption, which, it may be safely said, has con- 
tinued till this day. 'I'here were many distilleries at work in the 
Highlands, but the best known was Ferintosh, in Cromartyshire, 
which belonged to Forbes of CuUoden, who for public services 
was freed, by an Act of the Scottish Parliament passed in 1690, 
from the payment of duty. Such was the sale of the product of 
this distillery, which was, of course, to be had cheap, that 
Ferintosh became a synonym for whisky. By an Act of the 
United Parliament, passed in 1785, this privilege was withdrawn 
from Forbes, and the supply of cheap whisky was at an end, 
which explains the wail of Burns in his poem, "Scotch Drink'': — 

" Thee Ferintosh ! O sadly lost ! 
Scotland lament frae coast to coast ! 
Now colic-grips, and barkin' hoast, 

May kill us a' ; 
For loyal Forbes' charter'd boast 

Is ta'en ana I 

But whisky was not the only liquor that took the place of home- 
brewed ale. An enormous supply of foreign spirits was smuggled 
into the country at isolated spots all round the coast, and this had 
a decided effect on the career of Burns, who, when farming failed, 
became one of the many Excisemen required to prevent the illicit 
importation of liquor. A good deal of brandy was thus brought 
into the country, much to the disgust of the Poet, who patriotically 
preferred tippeny and uscjuebae. This is the lament : — 

" Wae worth that brandy, burnin' trash. 
Fell source o' mony a pain and brash ! 
Twins mony a poor, doylt, drucken hash, 

O' half his days ; 
And sends, besides, auld Scotland's cash 

To her warst faes." 

Something must now be said about the Kirk. Life was 
simpler in the eighteenth century than it is to-day — the coming of 
the complex conditions under which we live was hardly even 


suggested — and, with fewer things to engage attention, the Kirk, 
and all that related to it, occupied more of the thoughts and the 
conversation of the people. There is more of the Kirk than of the 
State in Burns, and that though he was probably more interested 
in politics than most men of his day. To him the Kirk and its 
doctrines were an engrossing theme, and thus he apologises for 
departing from the subject of his dedication to Gavin Hamilton: — 

" Vour pardon, sir, for this digression ; 
But when divinity comes 'cross me. 
My readers still are sure to lose nie." 

The Kirk had a hold on the people of which we of the twentieth 
century have no experience, and in supervising their moral and 
spiritual well-being it could strike fear into the hearts of all but 
the utterly abandoned. It compelled those who were guilty of 
moral impurity to mount the cutty stool before the congregation 
and atone for their offence : — 

" When I mount the creepie chair, 
Wha will sit beside nie there ? 
Gie me Rob, I seek nae mair, 

The rantin' dog, the daddie o't." 

The Kirk also took cognisance of offences, such as breaches 
of the peace and drunkenness, which are now dealt with by the 
petty criminal courts. Thus Merry Andrew, in " The Jolly- 
Beggars," sings : — 

" I ance was tied up like a stirk 

For civilly swearing and quaffing," 

which is equal to saying that he had been punished by being 

placed in the jougs. 

One of the main themes of ecclesiastical conversation in the 

eighteenth century was patronage, with which we in these latter 

times are happily not troubled, and it was part of the enjoyment 

of poor folk to 

" Talk o" patronage and priests 
Wi' kindling fury in their breasts." 

The Kirk was long divided on the question whether the minister 
should be presented by a patron, usually the laird, or whether he 


should be appointed by the people themselves. The controversy 
was a bitter one, as witness : — 

'■ Lang patronat^e wi' rod o' airn 
Has slioi'tl llie Kirk's undoiii'." 

The Calvinists, or Auld Lichts, were opponents of patronage, and, 
as Burns satirically put it in " The Twa Herds," they sought to 

" Gel the brutes the power themsel's 
To choose their herds." 

Rather curiously, the Moderates, or New Lichts, who believed in 
the saving power of a moral life (and to which party Burns, of 
course, belonged), were supporters of patronage, which, as all 
with any knowledge of Church history must know, was the cause 
of the Disruption in 1843. The system lingered on till 1874, 
when it was abolished by Act of Parliament. 

In nothing is the change which has come oyer the Kirk more 
apparent than in the administration of the Sacrament of the 
Lord's Supper. Now it is a simple and reverent observance ; 
then it was what Burns truly called it, a " Holy Fair." This is a 
part of the subject on which one is tempted to dwell : but 
while there is such a wide difference between the new way of 
celebrating the Communion and the old way, the narrative of 
the Poet is so explicit that it seems needless to unduly extend 
this article by any attempt at interpretation. 

In bringing these notes to a close, several other matters must 
be dealt with very briefly. The allusions of Burns to the currency 
of the day must be explained. The Scots penny was equal in 
value to only one-twelfth of a penny sterling, so that the arles of 
the ploughman — a small sum given by the farmer to bind the 
bargain — was very small indeed : — 

" I fee'd a man at Martinmas 
Wi' arle pennies three." 

A boddle was one-sixth of a penny sterling : — 

" Fair play, he cared na deils a Ijoddle ;" 


while a plack was worth only one-third of a penny : — 

" Awa' ye selfish warl'ly race, 
Wha think that havins, sense and grace, 
Ev'n love and friendship should give place 
To catch the plack." 

Many readers will remember the groat, or silver fourpenny piece^ 

which was withdrawn from circulation not more than a generation 

ago :— 

" He will win a shillin' 
Or he spen' a groat." 

The tester was of the value of 6d sterling : — 

" Your sair taxation does her fleece 
Till she has scarce a tester." 

Another coin, of which we read occasionally in the news- 
papers when a delinquent juryman is fined, was the mark, worth 

[3^d sterling. 

" He gied me thee o' tocher clear, 
An' fifty mark," 

said the farmer to his auld mare, Maggie, so that the actual cash 
which he received from his guidfather was ^£,2 15s 6§d, 
and no one will be disposed to dispute the observation that the 
tocher " was sma'." A pound Scots was the equivalent of 2od 
sterling. The guinea has already been referred to at the begin- 
ning of this article. 

In " The Farmer's Salutation to his Auld Mare " we are 
informed of Maggie's prowess at brooses :— 

" At brooses thou had ne'er a fellow 
For pith and speed ;" 

and this recalls a merry custom, now quite extinct. After the 
performance of a wedding ceremony, the young horsemen of the 
party had a race — riding off to the old tune, " She's yours, she's 
yours nae mair, she's ours " — from the house of the bridegroom to 
that of the bride, and the winner had the privilege of receiving 
the young wife with certain old-world ceremonies into her new 
home. The custom has been observed both in Lanarkshire and 
Ayrshire within living memory. 



Newspapers were few, and they were also costly, owing to the 
tax, which was not removed till the middle of the last century, and 
the printed sheet had to serve a great many families, or groups of 
people, before it was finally disused, being passed round with the 
utmost care. Burns got the reading of a newspaper, and returned 
it after a more careful [lerusal than such publications are likely to 
get nowadays : — 

" Kind sir, I've read your paper through ; 
Sae gratefu" back your news I send you." 

The hangmen used a whip besides a rope, it being part of 
his duty to flog as well as to hang : — 

" The fear o' hells a hangman's whip." 

As late as 1822 an offender against the law was whipped by the 
hangman on the streets of Glasgow. 

A visitor to a house announced his arrival by tirling at the 
pin : — 

" Sae light's he jimped up the stair 
And titled at the pin." 

"On the back of a house door there used to be attached a risping 
pin, />., a notched rod of iron, with a loose string attached. This 
made a loud noise on beuig drawn up and down (tirled)." — [Note 
to Dr Wallace's edition of Chambers' Bitrns.] A burglar was so 
rarely seen in the country that the peasants did not need to go to 
ihe trouble of trying to keep him out of their houses. The doors 
were loosely fastened with a snick, a small bar of iron resting on 
a catch, and raised by pulling a string: — 

" Click I the string the snick did draw, 
And jee I the door gaed to the wa'." 

I close this article with an elucidation of a pretty eighteenth 
century custom now quite forgotten, viz., that of drawing lots on 
the eve of St. Valentine's Day : — 

" Yestreen, at the Valentine's dealing, 
My heart to my mou' gied a sten, 
For thrice I drew ane without failing, 
An thrice it was written ' Tam Glen.'" 


Misson, a traveller, who lived in the early part of the century, 
described this custom as follows :^"0n the eve of St. Valentine's 
Day the young folks in England and Scotland, by a very ancient 
custom, celebrate a little festival. An equal number of maids 
and bachelors get together, each write their true or some feigned 
name upon separate billets, which they roll up and draw by way 
of lots, the maids taking the men's billets and the men the maids'; 
so that each of the young men lights upon a girl that he calls his 
* Valentine,' and each of the girls a young man whom she calls hers. 
Fortune having thus divided the company into so many 
couples, the valentines give balls and treats to their mistresses, 
wear their billets several days upon their bosoms or sleeves, and 
this little sport often ends in love." 

From these notes, imperfect though they may be, it will be 
seen how important it is to a proper understanding of the text of 
Burns — who, not being a philosophical Poet, found his material in 
the things around him — to know what were the social conditions 
under which he lived. But while the notes are intended to help 
those who have difficulty in grasping the meaning of the Poet, 
because of a lack of this knowledge, and inducing them to turn 
with fresh interest to his pages, I am not without hope that they 
will be read with interest by those who do not need such 



SO great was the demand for Burns's first venture in print thnt, 
we are informed on good authority, not a copy could be 
procured for the household at Mossgiel, the whole impression 
(612 copies) having been exhausted in a few weeks. The fact 
that within a period of seven weeks the recent reproduction of the 
volume, by D. Brown & Coy., Kilmarnock, has been completely 
sold out is a most pregnant proof of the enduring nature of the 
Poet's fame. When the issue was put on sale it soon became 
evident that double the number could have been disposed of 
without effort, so widespread was the desire to possess a correct 
fac simile of the unpretentious volume, which an eminent Glasgow 
bibliophile has described as bringing us nearer the personality of 
Burns than the sum total of all the editions which have succeeded. 
No pledge was given to the subscribers, nor were the copies 
numbered, and that for justifiable and sufficient reasons. The 
venture was a speculative one ; the expense of a photogravure 
block for each page was a heavy outlay for a provincial firm ; and 
the price asked was the minimum proportionate to the risk. It 
was, therefore, necessary to guard against loss by reserving the 
right to issue a second and cheaper edition should the contingency 
eventuate. Happily, the result has exceeded all expectation, and 
the writer is authorised by the publishers to announce publicly 
that the blocks are to be destroyed in accordance with the pledge 
given at the last annual meeting of the Burns Federation, under 
whose auspices the work was undertaken. Some three dozen 
copies have been reserved, we understand, for the orders of those 


Colonial agents whose lists are not yet to hand, and for the few 
copies which have been sold in the home market since the month 
of October the published price* has been doubled. The book is 
therefore likely to rise in value. The writer has, advisedly, 
refrained till now from all public reference to the volume, for 
reasons which are perhaps obvious enough ; but he may be 
allowed to take this opportunity of stating that he had no pecuniary 
interest whatever in the venture, what he was enabled to do in 
connection therewith having been undertaken freely and willingly 
pro causae honore. 

In the unanimous chorus of approval with which the volume 
has been received by all competent to judge some fears have been 
expressed that it will facilitate the malpractices of the forger and 
the faker, but such fears are entirely groundless. Apart from the 
wide difference between a type-struck and a block-struck leaf 
plainly ])erceptible by the unskilled eye, every page of the repro- 
duction bears evidence of its origin on the face of it, which book- 
lovers will very soon discover for themselves. The wire-lines of 
the paper are identical with those of the original, but the trade- 
mark — apparently a trefoil with the mid-leaf transformed into a 
conventional ornament — 'has not been reproduced, one of the 
reasons for the omission being that only small fragments of it 
appear on some thirty leaves of the original, and these almost 
obliterated by the folding of the sheet and the subsequent 
stitching. There were no bound copies in the original issue of " 
the Kilmarnock edition, the account rendered by John Wilson to 
Robert Burns containing the informing and conclusive item, 
"Stitching 612 copies in Blue Paper at ifd — £,4. 9s 3d." Nor 
was there any label on the back, as has been supposed by some 
commentators, who, however, condescend on no proof of their 
averments. So far as known to the writer only four copies have 
come down to us in the original wrappers — the Dundee, the 
Paisley, the Edinburgh, and the Kilmaurs copy — none of which 
bears a label on the back nor any vestiges of it, as the writer can 
testify from careful and repeated personal examination of all four. 


The exact tint of tlie wnipjers gave some trouble, the oii^^inals 
having faded and become intermixed with perplexing greens and 
browns, and it was also necessary in selecting the colour to make 
allowance for the changes wrought by Father Time. For the 
same reason the ink had to be toned down to a point which 
allowed sufficient margin for the mellowing influence of the years 
to come. The blocks also were a source of anxiety, many of 
them requiring the most delicate retouching, while several, 
including the title-page, had to be recast several times before 
satisfactory results were obtained. All things considered, it may 
be confidently asserted that the Kilmarnock reproduction is as 
near an approach to perfection as is possible at the present stage 
of the photogravure art. 

The craftsmanship of John \\'ilson, as evidenced in the print- 
ing of Poeuis, chiefly in the Scottish Dialect, by the " obscure 
nameless Bard," has been frequently and justly praised. Like 
most work of the kind, however, it is far from being faultless. 
The minute examination of every word and letter which the 
preparation of Messrs Brown's reproduction demanded, revealed 
many slips of the compositor and not a few of the reader as well. 
The peculiarities of spelling characteristic of the Kilmarnock 
edition, which were subsequently corrected in the Edinburgh, 
need not here be commented on. But a few of the more 
notable slips may be given as a means of identifying the genuine 
volume and setting forth the difficulties in the way of a reliable 
reprint such as that issued by the late Mr M'Kie in 1867. As 
was to be expected in that work some of the errors of the old 
compositors have been corrected, perhaps unconsciously, by their 
modern brothers-in-trade, while others have been left untouched. 
We have selected fifty misi)rints from our notes which may be 
taken as typical examples. To the ordinary eye some of these 
may appear trivial, while our mention of others may be adjudged 
somewhat hypercritical. The misprints in the " Cotter's Saturday 
Night" (pp. 126, 136) have long been known to the cognoscenti, 
but there are a few more almost as glaring. 

Pa^e. Stanza. Line. Error. 

Title ... 1 Wrong font comma. 

Border ... ... Plain omitted at botlom of righl-hand inner 

of title perpendicular. In the M'Kie reprint the 

arrows are smaller and more numerous, and 
the interior finial of corner ornament is 
Reverse ... ... Apostrophe omitted in " Stationer^'." 

of title 

*III. .. 7 " Contrymen " for "countrymen."' 

*IV. ... 4 " Creations," final letter upside down. 

*V'. ... 6 " His," final letter upside down. 

VII. ... 1 Wrong font period. 

9 ... ... Do. do. at end of title 

" Na " for " Nae." 

Small initial at " Lord." 

" Een " for " e'en." 

"Their" for "they're." 

" Poortiths'," second vowel small cap. 

" Xeer '" for " ne'er." 

" Ladies," last letter Roman. 

" Our " for " owre." 

Small initial in " Sundays." 

" Echos " for "echoes." 

Last " fool," second vowel small cm p. 

" Cukoo " for "cuckoo." 

" C'heels " for " chiels." 

"King's" for "kings." 

"Campbell's" for " Campbelh.'' 

" Its," final letter upside down. 

" Sirname " for "surname." 

" VI." foi " IV." 

" Duely " for " duly." 

" Taen " for " ta'en." 

" Sacredotal " for "sacerdotal." 

" Rever d " for " rever'd." 

" Nol)le " for "noblest." 

"Well" for "we'll." 

"Ilagard" for "haggard." 

"Afright" fjr " aff"right." 

" Mispending " for "misspending" 

" Recompence " for "recompense." 

Word ".April" curiously divided. 














































































































" Wave " for " \v;iive." 
" Independani "' for "independent." 
" llanLjman'.s,"' final letter upside down. 
(siipia p. 179). 
" Wad na " for " wadna." 
" Lady"s," last letter Roman. 
" I'oossie "' for "pussy." (Hence " I'oossie 

Nancy " ?) 
"Tiviotdale" for " Teviotdale." 
" Warly " for " warl'ly." 
" Bad " for " hade." 
'■ Dadies " for "daddies." 
" Lc'ae " for " lea'e." 
■• Prest " for " press't." 
'■Chearful" for "cheerful." 

X;iTK. — The asterisk deiioles tli;it tlu' crrui- i-j corrected in the M'Kie reprint. 

Some seventy misprints in all have been noted, consisting of 
turned letters, wrong fonts, mis-spacing, and a few additional slips 
of the kind indicated above. We have taken no notice of the 
present and past participles — " coman," " howkan," " deny'd," 
" ply'd," &c. — nor of the repeated "ay" for "aye," which are 
characteristic of the Kilmarnock edition, though it will be found 
that the Poet repeatedly infringed his own rules on his first 
appearance in type. For the corrections in the M'Kie reprint it 
is almost certain that the compositor is respf)nsible, the fruits of 
his craftsman instinct afterwards escaping the eye of the reader. 
The modern imitation type used in the rej)rint is narrower in face 
than the old, and consequently was capable of being packed more 
closely on the compositor's "stick." This might have been 
retnedied in some degree by the use of the broader " quads " 
apparently in use in Wilson's time, and a greater measure of 
coincidence in the length of the lines thereby secured. The 
initial capitals of the reprint, besides, are much too large, and the 
paper and binding are not in accordance with the original. It 
was these considerations which induced Mr M'Kie's lineal 
business successors to improve upon the reprint by replacing it by 
the photographic reproduction, which is not likely to be superseded 


fur many years to come. We have been informed that the 
profits realised are to be devoted to a pure-text edition, at a 
popular price, to take the place of the Kilmarnock Scott Douglas 
edition. If at all possible, we would advise the inclusion of at 
least representative examples of Burns's prose compositions in 
this projected edition for the use of the masses, so as to afford 
them clearer grounds of judging what manner of man Robert 
Burns really was. 




THE term " honest Allan " has an appearance of simplicity 
and, ex fade, a plain meaning, which can hardly be mis- 
understood. It indicates, one might say, the personal possession 
of a well-known, if not a common virtue, viz., honesty. A search 
for the individual having a clear title to the distinctive name 
proves ere long, nevertheless, both difficult and disappointing. 
The word " honest," moreover, turns out to be itself elusive and 
uncertain, as may be discovered by pondering the different shades 
of meaning between "an honest fellow" and "an honest woman." 
Its usual construction in English hardly supplies more than a 
shadowy clue to all that is implied in its Scots interpretation. 

When, for example, Burns wrote of the " honest men " of 
Ayr, he did not mean to say that they were not addicted to fraud, 
cheating, or stealing, nor did he mean to place above the might 
of kings the making of a man who was simply not a thief. In 
either case. Burns had probal)ly no thought of the vulgarly 
criminal appropriation of another person's property. A man may, 
accordingly, be innocent of the decalogued crime and be nnim- 
peachably fair in his dealings, and still fall short of the Scots 
standard of honesty. It implies a certain all-round moral dis- 
tinction, and such general, sterling solidity of character as inspires 
confidence. The honest man is alike above subterfuge and moral 
cowardice. He is to be trusted imjjlicilly in word and deed, as 
one who speaks only what he deems truth, and does only what he 
thinks right. To be honest, in the Scots sense is, in fine, to be 
something of a paragon — a compendium of many virtues — but 
notably, to be manly and true. It is not unlikely that, in the end, 
" honest Allan " may turn out a myth, and that not because the 


test applied to his ethical sense is either exacting or severe, but 
because the title has been conferred without due discrimination. 

An instance in point occurs in one of the rhymed epistles of 
Hamilton of Gilbertfield, where he takes the liberty of addressing 
his correspondent, Allan Ramsay, as " honest Allie." Taking a 
hint apparently from Hamilton, Burns follows suit, and, looking 
for a rival to Theocritus, in " Poem on Pastoral Poetry " intro- 
duces the couplet : — 

" Yes ! there is ane ; a Scottish callan ! 
There's ane ; come forrit, honest Allan ! " 

an endorsement sufficient, under ordinary circumstances, to have 
sent Ramsay down to posterity bearing the label of a quality akin 
to orthodoxy — namely, Scots respectability. Honours, however — 
knighthood, doctorate of laws, and the like-— lose their gloss when 
bestowed without strict selection. Burns may thus have gone 
slightly astray in nominating a triumvirate of honest Allans. In 
a letter of 26th October, 1792, to George Thomson, he sends his 
" best compliments to honest Allan," which, so far as known, 
must mean David Allan, the artist, called by a stretch of fancy 
" the Scottish Hogarth," but most widely and favourably known 
probably by his illustrations of the other honest Allan's Gentle 
Shepherd. Burns frequently praises his work when writing 
Peter Cunningham as well as Thomson, but what title he had to 
admission to the aristocracy of Honest Men is beyond conjecture. 
The third of the trio is mentioned in a note by Burns to the song 
"Willie brewed a peck o' maut," inserted in the Riddell inter- 
leaved copy of the Scots Musical Museiun. Distributing the 
honours. Burns says : " This air is Masterton's, the song mine. 
The occasion of it was this — Mr Wm. Nicol, of the High School, 
Edinburgh, during the autumn vacation, being at Moffat, honest 
Allan (who was at that time on a visit to Dalsvvinton) and I went 
to pay Nicol a visit. We had such a joyous meeting that Mr 
Masterton and I agreed, each in our own way, that we should 
celebrate the business." Never, surely, was any other peck o' 
maut so inspiring of immortal music wedded to immortal verse. 
William Nicol then filled the title-role, while the Poet and Allan 


MastLMion are the iwam who " cam' to see "—or to " pree," as they 
did to a purpose. Why, however, a writing-master, with a turn 
for musical composition, should be specifically designated 
" honest " cannot even be guessed, unless it be on the score of 
possessing all the essential virtues of a boon companion. 

There, nevertheless, they stand— a poet, an artist, and a 
composer— to represent Burns's elastic sense of the word " honest," 
and so to pass among the immortals. Each might have been left 
in possession of his pro indiviso share of the honour, had not 
another claimant put in an appearance bearing a testimonial from 
Sir Walter Scott. In his Journal, 12th November, 1826, Scott, 
then in London, notes: "We breakfasted at honest Allan 
Cunningham's— honest Allan— a leal and true Scotsman of the 
old cast." The expression had previously been used by Scott in 
the introduction to The Fortunes of Nigel {1^,22), where, in kindly 
reference to possible adverse critics of Cunningham's tragedy of 
Str Marmaduke Maxwell, he says : " Never mind them, honest 
Allan, you are a credit to Caledonia for all that." 

Further search may be abandoned. Putting aside David 
Allan and Allan Masterton as yielding nothing to investigation 
into validity of title, Allan Ramsay and Allan Cunningham 
remain for examination in virtue of credentials under the sign- 
manual of their greatest countrymen. Burns and Scott. Both 
guarantors are at once acquitted of everything but the amiable 
weakness of trustful kindliness. Burns owed much to Ramsay, 
and thought more highly of his poetical genius probably than it 
deserved. That he was acquainted with The Gentle Shepherd 
and the Tea Table Miscellany is certain ; but that he was as 
familiar with The Ever Green (1724) is doubtful, although it is 
never safe to put limits to Burns's reading. It may, however, be 
taken for granted that he had no direct knowledge of the Banna- 
tyne Manuscript, and there is no reason to think that he knew 
Lord Hailes' Ancient Scottish Poems, published in 1770, taken 
(rom that manuscript. 

As " skull-thacker " or wig-maker, [)oet, editor, bookseller, 
librarian, and theatre-manager, Allan Ramsay may be said to have 


lived, and (in 1757) to have died in the odour of respectability. 
It never appears to have occurred to any of his contemporaries to 
doubt the strict truthfulness of the prosperous High Street man 
of business, and proprietor of the architectural goose-pie which he 
called Ramsay Lodge. When the truth about him appeared, it 
was not harshly blurted out, but issued gently, and without any 
of the parade of a clever detective unearthing a fraud. Lord 
Hailes announced his " find " in his little, unpretentious volume 
of 1770, "■ Anciejit Scottish Foefus, published from the MS. of 
George Bannatyne, 1568." He pointed out that Ramsay, in his 
selection from Bannatyne, omitted some stanzas, added others, 
modernised the versification, and varied the ancient manner of 
spelling. Ramsay styles his work " The Ever Green : being a 
collection of Scots Poems, wrote by the Ingenious before 1600." 
In the preface we read of assistance rendered by The Honourable 
William Carmichael, advocate, who furnished "a valuable Number 
of Poems in a large Manuscript book in Folio, collected and 
wrote by Mr George Bannyntine in anno 1568; from whicli 
MS. the most of the following are gathered." The saving words, 
" the most," do not modify the explicit statement upon the title- 
page that the poems were " wrote before 1600." 

Following up his minor general charge, Lord Hailes gives 
these particulars : " Some pieces inserted in The Ever Green 
were composed in the last age, others in the present. Thus, the 
" Comparison" and "The Solsequium "* are the work of the Earl of 
Stirling, Secretary to Charles I.; "The Vision " and "The Eagle and 
Robin Redbreast "t are obviously modern. " Hardiknute " is 
probably modern, certainly of no great antiquity. "Jock's Advice 
to his Dad " is the composition of Heywood, the English Epi- 
grammatist, "The Answer" is modern. The Ever Green "Hardy- 
knute : a Fragment," is a slight variation upon the poem (not 
described as a fragment) ascribed to Lady Wardlaw (1670-1727). 
The poems signed " Ar, Scot." are traced to Ramsay himself, the 
Ar. being his initials, the added Scot, signifying his nationality. 

*The Solsequium, or the Lover comparing himself to Sun-Flower, signed 

" ^;wrf Montgomery." 

t Both signed " Quod hx. Scot." 


That, witli any real intention to deceive, Ramsay should 
have left tracks so easily and readily followed is surprising ; 
surprise changes to amusement when, in knowledge of the facts, 
his little plot is examined in connection with the language he 
employs in the Dedication and Preface of The Ever Green. In 
the former, he speaks of the Royal Archers being presented by 
"the following Old Bards," "with an Intertainment that can 
never be disagreeable to any Scotsman who dispises the Fopery 
of admiring nothing but what is either new or foreign ;" he 
descants upon these Poets making a " Demand for that Immortal 
Fame that tuned their Souls Some Hundred Years Ago " ; and he 
argues modestly that "good Sense, sharp Satyre and witty Mirth 
may be express'd with a true Spirit, altho' in antiquated Words 
and Phrases " — and although the antique form is only assumed to 
cloak such a modern as himself. 

The Preface is alike amazing and delicious. Unabashed, 
Ramsaycontraststhe "affected Delicacies andstudiedRefinements" 
of modern writings with " that natural Strength of Thought and 
simplicity of Stile our Forefathers practised" — and which bethought 
he could echo. " When these good old Bards wrote," he reflects, 
"we had not yet made Use of imported Trimmings upon our 
Cloaths, nor of foreign Embroidery in our Writings." The reader 
is audaciously reminded that, in these poems, " he is stepping 
back into the Times that are past and that exist no more " — 
except for those who see Visions. It is much to be regretted 
that the following crowning intention was not carried out :— 

" It was intended that an account of the Authors of the 
following Collection should be given ; but not being furnished 
with such distinct Information as could be wished for that End at 
present, the Design is delayed until the publishing of a third or 
fourth succeeding Volume, wherein the Curious shall be satisfied 
in as far as can be gathered with Relation to their Lives and 
Characters and the Time wherein they flourished. The Names of 
the Authors, as we find them in our Copies, are marked before or 
after their Poems." 

This last observation is cunningly made for trail-covering 


purposes, since it must be construed as including Ramsay's 
own notn de plume ^ " Ar. Scot," in its scope. -He had, moreover, 
" distinct Information " at least about himself, and an auto- 
biographical sketch of Allan Ramsay might have been a valuable 
curio-iity. Coming now to the particular poem, the account given 
in The Ever Green of the origin of " The Vision " is so circum- 
stantial as well-nigh to disarm suspicion in advance. It there 
bears to have been " compylit in Latin be a most lernit Clerk in 
Tyme of our Ilairship and Oppression, anno 1300, and translatit 
in 1524." At the foot of the page, a note says the poem has 
reference to the Scots sufferings after Baliol's submission to 
Edward I., and until independence was asserted by the Great 
Bruce. Unfortunately, the greater the ingenuity of the mystery- 
maker, the greater the zest in divulging the secret. 

In his " Remarks on the Genius and Writings of Allan 
Ramsay," Lord Woodhouselee at first treats Ramsay's composi- 
tion of " The Vision " as more or less a matter of course, and 
adds that " to aid the deception he made use of a more antiquated 
phraseology than is found in his own Scots poems." In a note 
to this passage reference is made to an article in the first volume 
of the Transactions of the Scottish Antiquaries, proving that 
' The Vision " and " The Eagle and Robin Redbreast " were 
both written by Ramsay. Later in his " Remarks," Lord Wood- 
houselee returns to the subject, and making sundry additions to 
the Antiquaries article by the elder Tytler, summarises the 
entire case. The evidence and reasoning are quite convincing. 
It appears that Ramsay's daughter acknowledged her father's 
authorship, and it may be noted that Lord Woodhouselee makes 
no moral reflection upon the matter. 

The secret once pierced, it is possible, but not certain, that 
Allan Cunningham had a hand in chastising Ramsay. If he had, 
the high moral tone assumed by the master of literary ethics 
becomes the most edifying feature of the biography in Ramsay 
and the Earlier Poets of Scotland, as published, without a date, 
by Virtue & Co. Under the above heading on the title-page, 
" Ancient Ballads and Songs " appears as a sub-title, and the 


whole bears to be " Edited, with Notes Critical and Biographical, 
by Allan Cunningham and Charles Mackay, LL. D." The volume 
is a miscellaneous collection of Scottish poetry by Ramsay, 
Fergusson, Lapraik, and several others. The Notes upon 
" Ancient Ballads and Songs of the North of Scotland " are 
specially credited to Peter Buchan, but none of the biographical 
sketches is signed. A doubt of the authorship of the Life of 
Ramsay, generally credited to Mackay alone, arises in this way. 
Cunningham lived 1784-1842, and Mackay 1814-18S9. The 
latter began to publish in 1836, six years before Cunningham's 
death. In his Recollectio?is, Mackay makes no mention of 
Cunningham ; but, without certain knowledge of collaboration 
between the two men, would Virtue & Co. have ventured to place 
their names as joint-editors upon the title-page of the book ? How 
long Mackay's work, Allan Ramsay and the Poets of Scotland 
prior to Burns, was in preparation, or in manuscript before publi- 
cation, does not appear to be exactly known. The Life of Ramsay 
has a strong flavour of Cunningham, and yet the most cynical 
would fain wish him cleared of any share in the "preaching" to 
which Ramsay is subjected. 

The delinquency of the latter concerning " The Vision " is 
discussed in all its bearings. The key proffered in The Ever 
Green, introducing King Edward and Bruce, is rejected as mis- 
leading. Instead, it is suggested that if George I. be put in place 
of Edward I., and the Chevalier St. George in that of Bruce, the 
real sense of " The Vision " is made clear. The explanation of 
Ramsay's having donned the mask is that, a Jacobite at heart and 
to the knowledge of his intimates, he wished both to gratify and 
to conceal his political leanings, and so to please his friends with- 
out bringing his loyalty under suspicion. For worldly reasons, we 
are told, he was desirous of standing well with both parties. 
Hence " The Vision." 

The indictment of Ramsay thus holds a double count — one 
involving misrepresentation, the other amounting to uttering 
counterfeit poetic coinage. Under the first, " honest Allan " is 
pilloried for an offence akin to the technical crime in Scots law of 


" falsehood, fraud, and wilful imposition." To realise how dreadful 
^t is, the foresaid " preaching " must be read. In a professing collec- 
tion of old Scots poems, written "by the Ingenious" before 1600, are 
some known to have been written after 1 700, and one, probably 
two, from the pen of the collector himself, " honest Allan," the 
most " ingenious " of all the Bards ! But for The Ever Green 
'' the world might never have learned to doubt his veracity ;" yet 
" the certainty of this deception at once places him in the category 
of such writers as Chatterton and Macpherson. There is no 
mincing the matter. Allan Ramsay was to a certain extent — a 
very limited one it must be allowed — a literary impostor." Still, 
"the world deals mercifully with literary frauds" — "perhaps the less 
we .say on the matter the better for our author;" "his greatest fault 
was that he was a dishonest editor." The treatment of the offence 
is forced throughout. If it be all Mackay's, the doctor was 
evidently bent upon improving the occasion. If it be either 
Cunningham's or of his inspiration it would merit being qualfied 
as both insincere and hypocritical. Ramsay's sin, in fact, becomes 
pale, a mere venial peccadillo, beside that of his reprover. He, 
the commentator, assumes the ambiguous attitude of easing his 
conscience by clearly defining the heinousness of Ramsay's wrong- 
doing, and yet of endeavouring out of it, as a precedent, if not to 
build a defence for himself, to weave at least a plea in extenua- 
tion of his own fault. The epithets are bitter — ■" literary impostor," 
" literary fraud," " dishonest editor." Guilt being proven, more 
restrained condemnation had been more effective. It is, however, 
idle to protest. Exit " honest Allan " the First. 

In his own experience Mackay was no stranger to editorial 
deceptions, as witness the Introduction to hh Jaco/nie Son^s and 
Ballads^ and his handling of James Hogg. He reminds us that 
the Shepherd not only inserted his own song " Donald Macgillavry" 
in his collection of Jacobite Relics, but pronounced it editorially 
"one of the best songs that ever was made," and afterwards, 
avowing the fraud, gloried in it. Literary trickery, however, does 
not appear to have had more than a limited vogue. Hogg knew 
Cunningham, but that the mason caught the infection from the 



shepherd is not borne out by the facts. Honest Allan, the 
Second, in fact, seems to have been born with a moral squint. 
Any intention of measuring "the quantum o' the sin" is 
repudiated in advance. To the last he could see no wrong in 
giving the rein to imagination when facts failed him, and through- 
out his life he was incapable of appreciating the difference between 
successful imposture and a good joke. 

That his reputation stood so long is unaccountable. Of late 
years, however, he has frequently been spoken of lightly in the 
matter of veracity. Scott-Douglas, for example, allows Cunning- 
ham's account of Burns' funeral to be picturesque, but cannot 
accept it as other than " an effort of fancy.'' C. S. Dougall 
attributes the fact that he is not always trustworthy to a vivid 
imagination and a desire to say something new about Burns. In 
connection with the Buchanite Delusion, Mr John Cameron 
declares one of Allan's notes full of inaccuracies, and that he 
dre-;sed up local rumour "in the most extraordinary manner out 
of the wealth of his own imagination." He singles him out as 
the " most unreliable of all for matters of fact," and finally gives 
him a contemptuous dismissal — " but anything can be pardoned 
the poet and novelist." Forgiveness, nevertheless, is one thing ; 
respect and acceptance are another. Allan's British Painters^ 
Life of IVii'kie, and Life and Works of Burns are either authorities 
and good for reference, or they are good for nothing. It is not 
proposed here to traverse any of the panegyrics pronounced upon 
him, as a man of many virtues and praiseworthy traits. It is only 
desirable to take that view of him in which he appears, in 
succession to Ramsay deposed, as "honest Allan." It is possible 
that, meaning to praise, Scott did him an injury, and that the 
intended place of honour has proved a pillory — '' Honos honesltim 
decora i, i>iho?iesiiim noiat." 

The story has been told more than once of Cunningham's 
practical joke at the expense of the villagers of Kirkmahoe, how 
he and a companion, at a time when a French invasion rested 
like a nightmare upon the country, created a local panic, and 
finished off the joke by placarding a reward for the ai)prehension 

of the perpetrators of what has been called a " heartless hoax." 
The French peril was, no doubt, a very real bugbear. It was 
daring, and perhaps cruel, to make sport of it. Men, neverthe- 
less, who have not forgotten that they once were young, are not 
likely to be too hard upon Allan and his fellow-conspirator. 
The trick, it is worth noting, was highly successful, and it 
remained a secret for more than half a century. It was cleverly 
conceived, boldly put in practice, and thoroughly carried out. 

To moralise over it were profitless, but it does derive a 
certain amount of significance from after-events. It was one of 
the first symptoms of a constitutional tendency — so-called 
advisedly — which, left unchecked in early life, developed into a 
moral flaw. Allan's next practical joke was passing off as genuine 
Remains of Nithsdak and Galloivay Song, and allowing 
Cromek to publish as su-h a number of ballads and lyrics of his 
own composition. He was then a man of twenty-five, and of 
probably mature judgment concerning ordinary matters of right 
and wrong. Allan's son, Peter, tells the history of the hoax, 
with manifest filial pride in his father's cleverness. It was no 
after-thought. At the beginning of the Cromek acquaintance, he 
having "jumped at the idea of rivalling Percy, Ritson, and Scott," 
" the idea of a volume of imitations passed upon Cromek as 
genuine remains, flashed across the Poet's mind in a moment." 
*' Cromek foresaw a volume of genuine verse. . . . He never 
suspected a cheat, or, if at all, not at this time." Once he must 
have posed Allan, by asking him the names of the poets Niths- 
dale and Galloway had produced. That Cromek came to know, 
or to divine the secret of the alleged Remains is morally certain. 
Why else should he have cautioned Allan — " Be cautious not to 
divulge the secrets of the Prison House." We now know from 
Allan himself that " every article but two little scraps was con- 
tributed by me." Virtually all the cognoscenti of the time knew 
the real poet of the Remains— Scoit, Percy, Hogg, Jeffrey (who 
told Scott he was convinced of the fraud, but did not think it 
worthy of exposure) and Wilson 


The Reinains were published in 1810 ; nine years afterwards, 
(December, 1819) " Christopher North" reviewed them in Black- 
wood. Cromek is there said to be enthusiastic but credulous, 
and ignorant of poetry. The Appendix upon district customs is, 
without any doubt, ascribed to Cunningham, and to him also 
" the best of the poetry belongs." In the course of Wilson's 
destructive analysis of the probabilities of the invented story, the 
plot is pulled to pieces, and — " independently of all this, the 
poems speak for themselves, and for Allan Cunningham." The 
stories attached to certain songs are quoted with the Addendum, 
"which we know to be Allan Cunningham's." By that time, in 
fact, Allan had avowed the authorship of the " Mermaid." It 
is now amusing enough to read Allan's comment upon one speci- 
men of his own work : " A fairer specimen of romantic Scottish 
love than is contained in this song is raVely to be met with. It 
was first introduced to Nithsdale and Galloway, about thirty 
years ago,_, by a lady whose mind was deranged." Peter 
says of the Blackwood article that " nothing can be more dis- 
criminatingly beautiful tljan the language of the review through- 
out." Neither he nor Wilson, nor apparently anyone else — it 
was years afterwards that Scott dubbed the arch-impostor " honest 
Allan " — saw in the Remains business any question of right and 
wrong. Peter concentrated his view of the volume, the review, 
and the whole circumstances, upon the single point of his father's 
rank and reputation as a poet. By trickery the glory was dis- 
played, and the exposure of the trick robbed the glory of not a 
single ray. 

In the midst of such acclaim one is almost afraid that the 
mere suggestion of a possible moral view might be dubbed Puri- 
tanical, or worse. What has the art of poetry to do with morals ? 
In 1847, it may be diffidently mentioned, the editor of Chamders's 
Journal did advert to something of the sort in connection with 
Peter and the above-noted Introduction. He says, rather sheep- 
ishly : " From peculiar habits of feeling we never have been 
able to look on the proceeding quite in the sportive light in which 


it is usually regarded ; but, at the worst, it was no heavy sub- 
traction from the really estimable character of Cunningham. . . . 
The best of ' honest Allan ' is here." The name, be it observed, 
sticks in the very face of the evidence that it is a ludicrous misfit, 
and the code of Scots ethics shrinks into " peculiar habits of 

feeling !" 


(To be continued.) 


A " Blast o' Januar' win' " has brought 

Mis birthday round again, 
And gather round the festive board 

The wale o' Scotia's men : 
Grey-bearded sires, and ladies fair, 

And chiels wi' cleric gown, 
Wi' strappin' lads frae " Banks o' Ayr," 

An' maids frae " Bonnie Doon ;" 
And to the immortal scroll of fame 

Each thought in fancy turns, 
Where high in radiant letters flame 

The name of " Robert Burns." 

Through foreign lands, ayont the foam, 

Ilis fame and worth have spread, 
His songs will aye be sung at home 

Whilst laverocks sing o'erhead ; 
And eyes that are grown old and dim 

Will brighten as of yore, 
When fond remembrance points to him 

Who treads these haunts no more. 
The exile on a foreign strand, 

His restless spirit yearns 
To view again the rugged land 

Of Wallace, Bruce, and " Burns. " 

John Hose, Riccarton. 

hk;iila\d marv: a summation. 

NOTWITHSTANDING all that has been written about 
Highland Mary — and she has been more written about 
than any other Burns heroine — very little that is certain is known 
regarding her. Put to purgation, the following is the meagre 
array of facts which we are prepared to swear to : — 

(i) She was born somewhere in the West Highlands. 

(2) She was a servant-maid in the household of Gavin Hamil- 

ton, Mauchline, when Burns resided at Mossgiel. 

(3) She left Mauchline about the time Burns had resolved to 

emigrate, and returned to her home in the West High- 

(4) She died of fever, at Greenock, in the autumn of 1786. 
Mystery surrounds her personal history, and Burns himself has 
left little upon the record to dispel it. On the contrary, it is 
evident that his desire was to draw the veil closer round the 
shadowy figure of the Highland maiden who impinged upon his 
orbit more like a meteor tlian a " lingering star " — shining in 
brightest effulgence for a brief period, and disappearing suddenly 
into the darkness from which she had emerged. Tradition has 
thrown a light, more or less glimmering and uncertain, on her life- 
history ; but, at best, the bulk of what has been received as fact 
by her chroniclers is only probability, resting upon evidence 
which is purely circumstantial. Burns's early biographers say very 
little about Highland Mary. Heron neither mentions nor alludes 
to her ; Currie adds nothing to what he found written by Burns 
himself save the trite inference that " the object of this passion 
died early in life, and the impression left on the mind of Burns 
seems to have been deep and lasting ;" what Cromek asserts in 
his Reliques will be treated of further on ; and Hamilton Paul 


confines himself to the diffuse statement that Burns's first and 
last interviews with Highland Mary took place in the vicinity of 
Tarbolton and Mauchline, to which he appends an imaginative 
poetical prose description (very probably suggested by what had 
appeared in Cromek) of the precise scene of " the last fareweel," 
which he locates at the spot " where the Fail disembogues itself 
into the Ayr " — " there or thereabout," he cautiously adds as a 
saving clause. All in the way of direct evidence we get from 
Gilbert Burns is the opinion that Highland Mary was the inspirer 
of the song, " Sweet Afton ;" " but," he continues, " Dr Currie 
says that it was written in honour of Mrs Stewart, of Stair, and he 
must not be contradicted " — a suggestive addendum, we may 
ren>ark in passing, which doubtless explains Gilbert's unaccount- 
able silence on certain more weighty representations which 
obtained currency on the authority of Currie, who knew less at 
first-hand of the Dumfries period of the Poet's career than his 
brother professed to be possessed of. 

The foregoing practically includes all the information avail- 
able when Scott Douglas and Robert Chambers began their 
investigations. In January, 1850, the former read a paper to the 
Society of Antiquaries, Edinburgh, in which he i)ut it beyond 
doubt that the earlier biographers had been misled ; that the 
Highland Mary incident did not happen in the early youth of the 
Poet, but during the Mossgiel period of his life, the Bible he pre- 
sented to her bearing 1782 as the date of publication, and the half- 
obliterated inscription on it also testifying that it was written at 
" Mossgavil " (the old name of Mossgiel), on the actual tenancy 
of which the two brothers did not enter till the beginning of i 784. 
How did the misconception arise ? Let us see what Burns himself 
has to say on the subject. 

Three years after her death (December 13th, 1789) he sent 
a copy of ''Mary in Heaven" to Mrs Dunlop, to which he 
ap[)ended the following hysterical apostrophe : — 

" There should I, with speechless agony of rapture, again recognise my 
lost, my ever dear Mary, whose bosom was fraught with truth, constancy, and 


In 1792, he forwarded to George Thomson the song, *' Will ye go 
to the Indies, my Mary," with this note attached : — 

" In my very early years, when I was thinking of going to the West 
Indies, I took tlie following farewell of a dear girl. It is quite trifling, and 
has noiiiing of the merits of ' Ewe Buchts,' hut it will fill up the page. You 
must know that all my earlier love songs were the hreathing of ardent passion, 
and though it might have been easy in after times to have given them a polish, 
yet that polish, to me whose they were, and who perhaps alone casied for them, 
would have defaced the legend (/f the heart which was so faithfully inscrii)ed 
on them. Their uncouth simplicity was, as they say of ^lines, their race." 

In November, 1792, he sent Thomson the song, " Highland 
Mary," with this note : — 

" The foregoing song pleases myself; I think it in my happiest manner ; 
you will see at first glance it suits the air. The subject of this song is one of 
the most interesting passages of my youthful days, and I own that I would be 
much flattered to see the verses set to an air which would etisure celebrity, 
i'erhaps after all 'tis the still glowing prejudice that throws a borrowed lustre 
over the merits of the composition." 

Burns made no mention of Highland Mary in the auto- 
biography he wrote out for Dr Moore ; there is no reference t") 
her in his letters to his intimate friends ; and to the household at 
Mossgiel he vouchsafed no information regarding her. The 
extracts given contnin nothing whatever about her personality and 
previous life, nor of the beginning and duration of their attach- 
ment. He does not even once mention her full name, and he 
persistently speaks of the incident as occurring in his early years. 
We now come to Cromek, who for more than a hundred years has 
been considered an authority so far above suspicion that no one 
ever dreamed of questioning it or attempting to prove its 
reliability as a faithful transcript of the original documents from 
which it professed to be derived. In his Reliques, published in 
1808, and in which, professing to be C(jpying from the interleaved 
copy o^ Johnsons Museum ([)ublished August, 1792) which 
belonged to Burns's friend, Robert Riddell, opposite to the song 
" My Highland Lassie, O," he prints : — 

" This was a composition of mine in very early life, before I was known to 
the world. My Highland lassie was a warm-hearted, charming young creature 
as ever blessed a man with generous love. After a pretty long tract of the 
most ardent reciprocal attachment, «e )net by appoinlment, on the second 


Sunday of May, in a sequestered spot by the banks of Ayr, where we spent 
the day in taking a farewell, before she should embark for the West Highlands, 
to arrange matters among her friends for her projected- change of life. At the 
close of the autumn following she crossed the sea to meet me at Greenock, 
where she had scarce landed when she was seized with a malignant fever which 
hurried my dear girl to the grave in a few days, before I could even hear of 
her illness." 

Compared with what he wrote to Thomson, this is a surprising 
burst of confidence. Here, the composition, not the incident 
itself, is referred to his " very early life." We learn also that the 
attachment extended over " a pretty long tract ;" the year (even 
the month and the day) in which the parting took place is plainly 
and unmistakably set forth ; Biirns's betrothal to Highland Mary 
is confessed ; the approximate date of her death is given ; in 
short, almost all the material which goes to form what has been 
term.ed the " Episode Theory " is contained in this note for which 
Cromek stands godfather. It is so full and comprehensive that 
one wonders what was left for Scott Douglas to discover. It will 
consequently be seen that, its authenticity is a question of the 
first importance. Unfortunately for Cromek, the Riddell inter- 
leaved copy of the Museum, from which he professed to copy, has 
been discovered and brought to light by the late Mr Dick, 
of Newcastle, after a sojourn in obscurity for well nigh a 
hundred years. For the benefit of the general reader, we may 
briefly indicate its character. Mr Riddell, of Glenriddell, had so 
keen an interest in Scots songs that he got the first four volumes 
of the Museum re-bound with blank leaves inserted, on which 
historical and other notes could be inscribed opposite the com- 
positions by himself, Rums, or other competent authority. As was 
to be expected, practically the whole of these are initialed in the 
volume " R. R." and " R. B.," according as the information was 
Riddell's own or contributed by Burns. How Cromek discharged 
his editorial duties can be best appraised by the results of Mr 
Dick's comparison of Cromek's printed versions of the notes with 
the MS. originals. This is what he says in the preface of his 
posthumous volume, Noies mi Scotlish Song by Robert Burns, 
published in 1908 : — 


"The principal part (I.) of the following text is a verbatim copy of 
holograph Notes of Robert Burns in an interleaved copy of the first four 
volumes of/ohtiso/is Musical .Museum, which belonged to Robert Riddell, of 
Glenriddell, the friend and neighbour of Burns at Ellisland. Then follow (II.) 
the notes written by Riddell in the same volumes. The interleaves in the 
volumes being incomplete, I have described (III.) the missing leaves, with 
the songs which faced ihem, in the volumes, wiih a copy of three important 
notes which R. C. Cromek inserted in his Reliques of Kohert Burns (1808) as 
from the hand of Burns. Obviously these cannot be verified. The last part 
(IV.) consists of a series of spurious notes, also printed by Cromek in the 
Heliques. These are not in the volumes, and never were there. . . . The 
notes in Cromek's Reliques (pp. 195-306) have had a free run of one hundred 
years. Nearly every published work of the Songs of Burns during that period 
contains more or less of the notes. Hogg and Motherwell, Cunningham* 
Chambers, Scott Douglas, and Henley incorporated them bodily into their 
edi'ions of the Works of Burns, as none of these editors bad seen ihe Inter- 
leaveii Museum, nor had means to correct them." 

\\'hat was said in last year's Chronuie illustrative of Cromek's 
garbling and forgery, as well as the contemporary estimates of his 
personal character need not here be repeated. Sufifice it to say 
that the recovery of the Glenriddell MS. has convicted him of 
deliberately adulterating and inventing notes which he ascribes to 
Robert Burns : of suppressing others ; and of repeatedly substitut- 
ing the Poet's initials for those of Robert Riddell. The " missing 
leaves " are .'seventeen in number, and among them are those con- 
taining " My Highland Lassie, O," with its accompanying MS. 
note, a copy of which Cromek professes to give in his Reliques, as 
quoted above. Till these missing leaves are recovered and the 
text verified, Cromek's Highland Mary note cannot be received as 
authentic on his authority alone. He is a discredited witness ^ 
his printed version is "suspect" in the last degree; and 
documentary evidence demands the production of the founding 
document itself In the new light thrown upon the subject, the 
Highland Mary controversy, from first to last, falls to be revised. 
In a notable article which appeared in The New Review, in June 
1897, over the joint signatures of Mr Henley and Mr Henderson, 
this note of Cromek's is made the chief corner-stone of a 
lengthened argument in condemnation of "The Cult of Mary 
Campbell," in which many harsh and ungenerous things are said 
of both Burns and Highland Mary. W'e take the case for the 


prosecution as summarised by these writers on p. 679, the Poet 
appearing as usual as principal — in point of- fact sole — witness 
against himself. The points adduced are : — " (i) Burns was dis- 
carded by Jean Armour — overborne by her parents — in the 
February, or early in the March, of 1786. (2) As the result of 
this outrage to his pride, his paternal feelings, and his affection for 
Armour, his 'maddening passions roused to tenfold fury, bore over 
their banks with impetuous, resistless force, carrying every check 
and principle before them ' (R. B. to Arnott). (3) The afore- 
said passions having ' sunk into a lurid calm ' he began to ' lift 
up his grief-worn eye — to look — for another wife.' Accordingly 
(4) after a few preliminaries, of which there is no record, he 
betrothed himself to Mary Campbell, and parted with her on the 
14th May, that (so he says) she might go home and make 
arrangements for their marriage. (5) He never saw her again, 
but arranged that she should meet him at the autumn's end at 
Greenock, where, however, she had scarce landed ere she was 
seized by a malignant fever, which hurried his poor girl to the 
grave before he could even hear of her illness. In addition to 
these statements— all Burns's — we have the lyrics, especially 
'Thou Lingering Star' and 'Highland Mary,' together with 
that hypochondriacal fustian in a letter to Mrs Dunlop." The 
summary concludes with this cc.nviction on King's evidence, with- 
out the compensating pardon: — "The only witness as to Mary 
Campbell worth serious consideration is this of Burns himself." 
Let it be so, but before closing the record let us revise it in the 
light now shed upon it. How much of it is bound to go by the 
board? All but (i), (2), and (6), and thereby the whole super- 
structure falls to the ground, for Cromek is not the lone, solitary 
" witness worth serious consideration " on which the judgment 
proceeded. We say nothing of the forcing of language and 
special pleading which permeates the whole article. Why, for 
instance, do " H and H " quote only what suits them from Burns's 
letters during what is sneering ly termed the "Consolation"' period? 
If they take " R. B. to Arnott " seriously, nobody else has ever 
done so since its first publication in 1878. It is in rec'ility a 


jeu d'esprit which Burns afterwards reproduced from a copy for 
insertion, with an explanatory note, in the collection of his letters 
which he presented to Robert Riddell. " R. B. to James Smith,'' 
and " Robert Burns to John Ballantyne " are not exactly in the 
line of argument pursued by "H and H," and consequently 
escaped notice. The one-sided nature of their investigation is 
made manifest by the omission of all mention of the Poet's 
^'■quondam Eliza " who also figured in the " Consolation " period, 
and to whom he paid the compromising compliment, " From thee, 
Eliza, I must go "—luckily for that Mauchline belle without any 
note attached, Cromek or otherwise, or the Highland maiden 
would necessarily have had a companion in the pillory. Their 
keenness to score against Burns is evident from their choice of 
" the 1 2th of May " as the date of the " Court of Equity," though 
one of the copies is dated the 4th of June. The point is not so 
trivial as it appears, for by the selection of date it is made to 
appear that Burns was boabting of his '■ duplicate pretension " to 
the chair on the " Friday and Saturday " preceding the Sunday of 
"the last fireweel." Though all is made that can be made of 
the Mary Campbell of the Dundonald Session Record, the net 
result is less than nothing in support of the " light love'' theorem. 
"Of course" (say H and H) "it has not been proved that the 
Mary Campbell of Burns was the Dundonald Mary Campbell.' 
Why, then, interpenetrate the life-history of " Farmer Burns " with 
that of " Farmer Hay " if not for a set purpose ? The Dundonald 
Record and its contents were known to the writer half-a-dozen 
years before they became public property ; further, they were 
deliberated upon by the Executive of the Federation shortly after 
they came to his knowledge, the finding, after careful considera- 
tion of the facts and dates, being, that whoever the Mary 
Campbell in question was, she could not possibly be the Mary 
Campbell of Burns. The writer did his best to identify her by 
exploration of the Session Minutes of Stair and the Justice of 
Peace Records of Irvine, but though he struck the trail in 
Kilwinning, the facts elicited were not sufficiently clear and con- 
nected to warrant a more pointed con':lusion than that there was 


a Mary Campbell resident in the vicinity of Irvine within the 
period covered by the Sessional dates, the family to which she 
belonged being still represented in the same locality. Dr Wallace 
has given the Dundonald minutes in extenso in the Appendix to 
Vol. I. of his Chambers' Burns, but it was scarcely worth while 
elaborating an argument to refute the " strong presumption " 
method of enquiry. The minutes contain their own refutation. 
It is certain that Burns's Mary Campbell resided for some time in 
the parish of Mauchline, but neither tradition nor village gossip 
gives the slightest hint of her ever residing in the parish of Stair. 
The tradition that she was dairymaid at Coilsfield House (its 
modern successor is Montgomerie Castle) — persistent though it 
be — rests solely on oral testimony half a century removed from 
Burns's time, and even though it be received as credible, the fact 
remains that Coilsfield is not within the boundaries of Stair, and 
it is not at all likely that the Dundonald Session would err so 
glaringly in their administration as to refer the case to the wrong 
parish. There is no mention of such a case in the Mauchline 
Record. That Mary Campbell, while in Mauchline, was a nurse- 
maid in esse and a dairymaid or byrewoman in posse has always 
appeared to us as assuming a rather exceptional combination of 
accomplishments in a servant-woman of her class. Moreover, 
the case was finally disposed of on 17th December, 1787. 
Burns's Mary Campbell died in the autumn of 1786; thus the 
" strong presumption " presumes that she was a litigant in the 
Church Courts more than a twelvemonth after she was laid in the 
grave. In a Kirk-Session minute of Mauchline, of date January 
20th, 1785, we find that Agnes Cameron, New Street; Mary 
Vallance, Cumnock ; Flora Weir, Woodend ; and Janet Caldwell, 
Maybole ; were " late servants to Mr Hamilton ;" Helen Herris 
and Jean Rennie being named as " present servants." The 
engagements being half-yearly, it is highly probable that Highland 
Mary succeeded one or other of the last-named, and entered Mr 
Hamilton's service just at the time when "Farmer Hay's" pro- 
secution in the Justice of Peace Court was approaching the crucial 
stage. If she were the prosecutrix, she ought to have been in the 


parish of Stair on February 26th, 1786, with hur two-year-old 
child, unless, indeed, she had boarded it out on the "four pound 
sterling yearly " allowance wrung by the strong hand of the law 
from " Farmer Hay," for its maintenance. All this in the eyes 
and ears of the gossips of Mauchline, who, mirabile dictu, never 
once opened their mouths ! We need proceed no further with 
this superlatively preposterous " strong assumption." 

With regard to the notes which form the Histoires Scanda- 
leuses contained in the manuscripts lying in the Edinburgh Univer- 
sity Library — variously styled the Richmond, Grierson, Train, and 
Laing papers, and the substance of which is likewise given by Dr 
Wallace in the volume already indicated — but for the covert use 
made of them by certain prejudiced writers, we would have pre- 
ferred to have treated them with the contempt they merit. John 
Richmond, though latterly estranged from Burns, was never 
known, according to local tradition, to say a word in disparage- 
ment of the friend of his youth, nor would he tolerate it from 
others. Grierson we take to be Mr Grierson, of Baitford, joint- 
secretary of the Dumfries Mausoleum Committee, in 1813, and 
father of the Burns collector, Dr Grierson, of Thornhill. Train is 
well known as the correspondent of Sir Walter Scott. How such 
respectable names came to be connected with the Mauchline 
gutter gossip — improbable and unbelievable — concerning High- 
land Mary and Colonel Montgomerie, ofCoilsfield, is inexplicable. 
The Clarinda story condemns itself as an utter impossibility of 
date and circumstance. No credence can therefore attach to the 
remaining tales — for all originated from the same source — unless 
we are prepared to believe that Gavin Hamilton knowingly 
harboured a woman whose character was the talk of both town 
and country. If Mrs Begg is to be honoured with the Tarbolton 
degree of " B. B. " because she honestly told the conscientious 
and sympathetic Robert Chambers all she knew, it must be 
prefixed with a strong adjective to do full justice to the Mauchline 
Jamie Humphreys who whispered such rubbish in the ear of 
■Grierson, Train, or anybody else. 

The questions so trium[)hantly put by " H and H " at the 


end of their article can now be answered. There is no " nameless 
Highland lassie." Mary Campbell and the Highland Mary of 
the lyrics are one and the same person ; the supposition that 
there were two Mary Campbells, joint inspirers of the lyrics, is 
untenable ; to say there was never " no sich a person " is farcical. 
We select no year ; we reject no tradition ; we leave the Bibles at 
AUoway as they are ; we simply refuse to allow documentary 
evidence to be led till the documents themselves are produced. 
We are content to take the Highland Mary portrait as it is limned 
to us on the accredited record : to accept the " dead sweetheart " 
of Burns as he presents her to us ; and, having done so, to advise 
all whom it may concern, as " H and H " advise under the same 
conditions "that there is nothing, or almost nothing, to com- 
ment upon." Subsequent events recoil upon Cromek, not upon 
Burns. Mary Campbell made no preparations for any " pro- 
jected change of life ;" she crossed from Campbeltown to Greenock 
to enter upon a situation in Glasgow, but death intervened and 
arrested developments. The record of Burns contains nothing 
that even remotely savours of meanness or deceit, especially where 
women are concerned, but rather the opposite. The revised 
record of his Highland Mary transgressions now shrinks to his 
justifiable resentment against the parents of Jean Armour for their 
attempted dissolution by force of his private marriage to their 
daughter ; his giving vent, in hasty and perhaps ill considered 
words to the " maddening passions " begot of outraged feelings 
and wounded pride ; his writing of " hypochondriacal fustian " to 
Mrs Dunlop; and some lyrics of perhaps somewhat better texture 
in honour of the maiden herself. The unsympathetic make no 
allowance for the supersensitiveness and emotional exaggeration 
of the poetic temperament. Burns cannot be measured with the 
ordmary tape nor weighed in the ordinary balance. If the 
"jugglings of the male human heart " are unaccountable in 
ordinary beings, how much more inexplicable must they be in 
such an extraordinary man as Robert Burns ! That he turned to 
a former love in the hour of his distress and disappointment was 
only natural ; she was near him, had no reproach for him, and 


mayhap pitied him. What the " long tract of the mobt ardent 
reciprocal attachment " may mean, we know not. That it began 
in the March and ended in the May of 1786 is improbable. 
Mrs Begg testifies that he knew her before she entered Mr 
Hamilton's service. It is vain to speculate on what might have 
happened had Mary Campbell lived, and his rupture with the 
Armour family remained unhealed, as R. L. Stevenson vainly 
attempts. He was at the time in reality a married man but not 
conscious of the fact. He had undergone church discipline in 
the usual way, and had received from the parish minister (also 
ignorant of the fact), a certificate of bachelorhood. In the end 
he was reproved for his " irregular marriage " {vide Mauchline 
Session Record) and taken bound to adhere to his lawfully 
wedded wife, Jean Armour. Such a chapter of compromising 
incidents sufficiently accounts for his desire to shroud in mystery 
the impulsive outcome of the " maddening passions " roused into 
action in 1786 by the apparent perfidy of Jean. If wrong were 
done either woman, it was unintentional. Mary Campbell died 
without explanation or expression of contrition on his part, and 
this mayhap weighed heavily upon the Poet's soul. The grave of 
buried love is ever sacred, and if to that sanctity is superadded a 
sense of wrong or unkindness done to the dead one, our sorrow 
and repentance are all the more poignant because so unavailing 
The mother's darling, too early called to rest, lives for ever in 
undying youth amongst the cherubim ; the lost Lenore dwells 
for aye in the " distant Aiden " — white-robed, radiant, seraphic 
in beauty which never fades. Surely Burns commits no sin when 
he tells us this in the melodious numbers of which he was such a 
master. The finer emotions have their seat in virtue, not in vice ; 
and the scenes which are most indelibly photographed on our 
memories are those which are bathed in the rays of purity and 
innocence, not lit with the lurid light of sensuality and evil 




AMEE riNG of subscribers to, and other gentlemen interested 
in, the proposed Chair of Scottish History and Literature 
in Glasgow University was held in the Library of the City 
Chambers, Glasgow, on November lolh, 1909. The Hon. A. 
M'Innes Shaw, Lord Provost, presided, and there were present : — 
Sir John Ure Primrose, Bart. ; Sir William Bilsland, Bart. ; Sir 
Nathaniel Dunlop, Sir Donald MacAlister, Sir Thomas Mason, 
Df William Wallace, ex-Treasurer D. M. Stevenson, Messrs A. H. 
Pettigrew, Thomas M'Arly, C. J. Spencer, George Eyre-Todd, the 
Rev. James Forrest, J. T. T. Brown, John S. Samuel, Joseph 
Martin, J. L. Eskdale, A. R. Ormiston, and others. 

Mr John S. Samuel acted as clerk to the meeting, and sub- 
mitted a memorandum narrating the steps that had already been 
taken to raise the necessary funds for the proposed Chair. 

\X, inter <7//(7, stated that "in February, 1908, during the 
Lord Provostship of Sir William Bilsland, Bart., a circular was 
issued by him, in conjunction with ex-Lord Provost Sir John Ure 
Primrose, Bart, Principal Sir Donald MacAlister, and Dr William 
Wallace, to a number of gentlemen likely to be interested in the 
subject of a Chair of Scottish History and Literature, and inviting 
subscriptions towards its endowment. In response to that 
circular a sum of ;^203i 15s was subscribed and promised. At 
the request of Sir William Bilsland and the other gentlemen 
associated with him a committee was established in New York 
for the purpose of raising funds in the United States of America 
among sympathisers with the movement there. The chairman of this 
American committee is Mr Samuel Elliott, who has himself given 
a substantial contribution, and the honorary secretary is Mr James 



Marwick, C.A., of Messrs Marwick, Mitchell and Company, and 
the son of the late esteemed Town Clerk of Glasgow, Sir James 
Marwick. Largely through the efforts of these two gentlemen the 
sum of ;^65o has been collected in America. Concurrently with 
these several efforts a commiitee was formed in (Glasgow, with Dr 
William Wallace as convener, and composed of representatives of 
the various Burns Clubs, the Scottish Patriotic Society, the St. 
Andrew's Society, and a number of county and Highland associa- 
tions in the city. This committee held several meetings and 
issued appeals to the various bodies they represented, with the 
result that the Burns Clubs have had promised or subscribed a 
sum of ^244 13s yd, the Patriotic Society ^309 los yd, and the 
St. Andrew's Society ;:£^ 12s. From these several sources the 
total sum, either actually subscribed or promised to date, amounts 
to ;!^4i85 17s. At one of the later meetings of Dr Wallace's 
committee a sub-committee was appointed to confer with Lord 
Provost Bilsland with a view to approaching influential citizens 
either by means of a public meeting or otherwise. At the time 
wlien this proposal was made to the Lord Provost, the distress in 
the city, through want of employment, was so acute that it was 
considered inopportune to make a public appeal on behalf of the 
Chair. The distress referred to was so prolonged that it has not 
been possible till now to take the matter up. In the meantime 
arrangements have been made to hold in Glasgow in 1911 a 
Scottish Historical Exhibition, the surplus from which, to the 
extent of ;^i 5,000, is to be devoted to the fund for the establish- 
ment of the Scottish History Chair. This meeting was accord- 
ingly called to consider what steps should be taken either to 
establish a Lectureship in the meantime, pending the result of the 
Exhibition, or take such further steps as may be necessary in the 

Sir William Bilsland, in supplementing the statement by Mr 
Samuel, paid a warm tribute to the work of Dr William Wallace, 
and stated that but fur his enthusiastic and powerful support in 
the early stages of the movement, and the manner in which he 
combined so many patriotic and national interests, the scheuie 


would not be in the satisfactory state it was to-day. Sir William 
concluded by moving that the gentlemen present be constituted a 
committee, with power to add to their number, for the purpose of 
taking all necessary steps to still further promote the movement, 
to confer with all parties interested, and generally take charge of 
the funds collected and promised. He further moved that Dr 
Wallace be appointed convener of the committee. The motion 
was carried by acclamation, and Dr Wallace, in returning thanks, 
stated that he would be happy to continue to be of service to the 
■scheme so far as his health permitted. 

On the motion of Principal Sir Donald MacAlister, the Lord 
Provost and Sir William Bilsland were appointed vice-chairmen 
of the committee. In submitting this motion, Sir Donald asso- 
ciated himself with the remarks already made regarding the work 
of Dr Wallace, and added that he viewed with the greatest satis- 
faction the prospect of the addition of a Chair of Scottish History 
to the University equipment. 

On the motion of Sir John Ure Primrose, Mr John S. Samuel 
was appointed hon. secretary, and Mr J. T. T. Brown, hon 

The question of establishing a Lectureship with the funds 
already in hand was next considered, but it was resolved to take 
no steps in this direction until the result of the Exhibition is 

A vote of thanks to the Lord Provost, on the motion of the 
Rev. James Forrest, concluded the meeting. 

We may add that the Guarantee Fund of the Scottish Exhi- 
bition of National History, Art, and Industry, Glasgow, 19 ii, 
now amounts to ;«{,88,235, and guarantees are still being received. 
The following have agreed to become vice-presidents : — The 
Duke of Argyll, the Duke of Montrose, the Duke of Hamilton, 
the Earl of Rosebery, and Lord Strathcona. The following is an 
additional list of patrons : — The Earl of Aberdeen, the Earl of 
Mansfield, the Earl of Ancaster, the Earl of Verulam, Lord Leith 
■of Fyvie, Lord Cathcart and Lord Lucas. 


73 G. Street, Sak Lake City, 

Utah, U.S.A., April 21st, 1909. 
Mr D. M'Naught, 

Dear Sir,— As you are an authority on Burns, there is a comparatively 
small matter that I desire to call your attention to. Who was the heroine in 
that most exquisitely beautiful pastoral poem, "Flow gently, sweet Afton " ? 
In the Blackie & Son edition of 1858 an account is given of the Poet's 
acquaintance with Mrs Stewart of Afton and Siair, in which it is stated that 
Burns imagined the proprietress of no small portion of its soil as a simple 
cottage maiden and himself as her lover. In another edition it states — " Com- 
posed in honour of and presented to Mrs Stewart of Stair, whose paternal pro- 
perty was situated on the banks of the Afton, an Ayrshire tributary of the Nith, 
near New Cumnock." This representation has been repeated in edition after 
edition until, I suppose, it is generally accepted as correct. Now, against this 
theory or supposition, which I think is scarcely tenable; against the opinions of 
Gilbert Burns, Chambers, and Scott Douglas, who claimed that Highland Mary 
was the inspiration of the song ; and against the opinions expressed in the 
Edinburgh Fraternity edition (published 1886, and inscribed to Dr Andrew 
Carnegie), in which, after full consideration of the matter, it is said, " We aiife 
therefore inclined to believe that this fine artistically-finished song was a 
measured and polished compliment to Mrs Stewart," though, it is added, 
" Whoever the heroine was, we feel convinced that it was not Mary Campbell," 
I humbly submit a new presentation of the case altogether. The writer's 
father, William Murdoch, for many years a resident of Muirkirk, but now of 
America, aged 84 years, visited New Cumnock in the spring of iSt'S, previous 
to his leaving for the U.S. of America, and was informed by Mrs Fafquhar, 
then residing there (whose maiden name was Ann Murdoch, and who was 
born in 1813), that a Mary Murdoch lived at Laight, on the Afton Water, in 
Burns's day. Burns was a friend of the owner or tenant, and when in that 
district was his guest. Mary had taken the Poet's fancy, and he composed the 
celebrated song, " Flow gently, sweet Afton," in her honour. She was the 
daughter of John Murdoch, of Ashmark, New Cumnock. John Murdoch was 
a son of Robert Murdoch, Commondyke, Auchihleek, who died 9th November, 
1792. John Murdoch, of Ashmark, had a sister named Ann, who was married 
to John Logan, of Afton Bridgend, New Cumnock, or the Laight, formerly of 
Knockshinnoch, a close friend of the Poet. The above Mary Murdoch lived 
with her Aunt and Uncle Logan, and hence the acquaintance. My father's 
informant, Mrs Farquhar, was the daughter of Margaret Murdoch or M'Turk, 


■who was the niece of John Murdoch, of Ashmark, and she resided there. In 
more points than her name Mary Murdoch fits the song : — 

"Thy crystal stream, Afton, how lovely it glides, 
And winds by the cot where my Mary resides. " 

Her station in life corresponds with the Mary in the song. As I have 
already said, John Logan was an intimate friend of the Poet. Two letters of 
the Poet are contained in the Ellisland edition de luxe — the first, dated 
Kilmarnock, loth August, 1786, and the second, Ellisland, 7th August, 1789. 
In the latter the Poet sends Logan a copy of "The Kirk's Alarm," the first copy 
sent to Ayrshire, and accompanied by a warning not to permit a copy to be 
taken, " only to read it to a few of us." This proves the close intimacy that 
existed between them. John Logan died at Ayr, 9th March, 1816. The 
■closing stanza of " The Kirk's Alarm " is as follows : — 

" Afton's Laird ! Afton's Laird ! when your pen can be spared, 

A copy of this I bequeath. 
On the same sicker score, as I mentioned before. 

To that trusty auld worthy Clackleith^ 
Afton's Laird ! to that trusty auld worthy Clackleith." 

Burns would seem to have gathered quite a little troop of friends in the vale 
of Afton, near New Cumnock. From some inspiration connected with this 
district must have sprung the Bard's exquisite pastoral song, " Afton Water," 
which we conjecture to have been composed in 1791.* Besides what we have 
stated, we have documentary evidence in our family in the shape of a notice of 
death sent to John Logan, Esquire, Afton Bridgend, New Cumnock, notifying 
him of his father-in-law's death at Commondyke, 9th November, 1792, and 
asking him and "familie" to attend the funeral on 12th November, 1792. 
The claim that Highland Mary was the inspiration rests on no evidence what- 
ever but the word of Gilbert Burns, f The other claim, and that seemingly 
generally accepted, that Mrs Stewart of Stair was the heroine by transformation 
into a country maiden, has much less to support it, seeing that her association 
with Afton Water is altogether a misrepresentation of the facts. The Afton 
Lodge with which she was associated, through her paternal inheritaijce, 
was in a different part of the county altogether. Her name was not Mary, 
but Catherine Gordon. The claim I now advance for the first time has been 
known in our family since 1878. 

Considering the wide divergence of opinion existing amongst editors and 
other Burns authorities on the point, and in view of what I have now set forth, 
I make bold to say that the true solution has been found, and that this mystery 

has at last been cleared up. — Yours &c. , 


* It appears in the 4th Vol. of Johnson's MuHeuin, i^sue'i Aii^^ast, 1792.— [Ed.) 
t Gilbert adds that Dr Cunie must not be contradicted. Cui-rie ascribes it to Mrs 
Stewart.— [Eu.) 




THE year 1909 will be memorable on account of the passing 
away of one of the most interesting links with the 
National Poet. On 12th' July, 1909, there died at Cheltenham 
Sarah Eliza Maitland Tombs Burns Hutchinson, the elder 
surviving daughter of Lieut. -Colonel James Glencairn Burns, the 
fourth son of the Poet. She was in her eighty-eighth year, and at her 
death was the nearest and oldest living representative of Burns. 
Her life was indeed a varied and interesting one, but to under- 
stand it fully one must go back to the year of the Poet's death. 
Readers of Burns will remember how in the closing months of his 
life, when he felt his illness growing on him and realised that 
death was approaching, his one great anxiety was as to what 
should become of his wife and litde ones. There were four 
children — Robert, his eldest son, then only ten years of age ; 
Francis Wallace, aged seven ; William Nicol Burns, aged five ; and 
James Glencairn Burns, aged two ; and, doubly pathetic, his pos- 
thumous son, Maxwell Burns, was born on the day of the Poet's 
funeral. Burns himself was then only 37 years of age, and small 
wonder that many and anxious were his thoughts as to what 
should become of those nearest and dearest to him when he 
himself should be unable to provide for them. Time soon 
shewed how groundless were his fears. Though he had gathered 
together little of the world's gear, still, his loan to his brother 
Gilbert remained undischarged, with accunmlated interest, and we 
know for certain that he died practically free from debt. But his 
name and fame were the real heritage destined to secure a com- 
petence to his widow and children. Scarcely was he laid to rest 
in St. Michael's Churchyard when kind and loving admirers of 


his genius gathered round. Foremost among them were Sir 
James Shaw, the son of an Ayrshire farmer,who became Lord 
Mayor of London, Dr Currie, Dr John Moore, the father of Sir 
John Moore, and Mr M'Diarmid of the Dumfries Courier. 
Through their instrumentality a fund was soon raised sufficient 

Mrs Sarah Burns Hutchinson 

(Grand-daughter of tlie Poet).* 

to educate the fauiily, and to allow Bonnie Jean to end her 
years in comfort. Robert, the eldest son, was sent to Glasgow 
University, where he distinguished himself, and afterwards 
became a mathematical tutor and teacher. Francis Wallace 
Burns and Maxwell Burns died in childhood. 

The two remaining sons, William Nicol Burns and James Gltn- 

* From a photograph in the possession of D. M'Naujrht, Kihnaurs. 


cairn Burns, after being educated, first in Scotland and afterwards 
in London, both obtained, through the influence of Sir James 
Shaw and Sir John Raid, cadetships in the East India Company's 
Service. The former rose to the rank of CuJDnel and the latter 
to Lieut. -Colonel. Li course of time Lieut. -Colonel James Glen- 
cairn Burns married Sarah Robinson, and so it came that the 
subject of our .sketch was born at Neenuich, in India, in 
November, 1821. Her mother did not survive her birth, and 
little Sarah Burns was sent home to Dumfries, to be brought up 
by her grandmother, Bonnie Jean, with whom she lived till the 
latter's death in 1834. These were twelve happy years, and to 
the end she retained the most delightful memories of what was 
always to her " dear Dumfries.'' She is the little child, then about 
five years of age, who appears Ui the well-known portrait of 
" Bonnie Jean and her Grandchild." Her father married a second 
time Mary (daughter of Capt. Beckett), who died in 1844, leaving 
a little daughter of fourteen, Annie Burns Burns. In 1847 Col. 
and Lieut -Col. Burns (both widowers), having retired from the 
Army with well-earned pensions, took up their residence in 
Cheltenham, where Sarah burns was married in the following 
year to Dr ^V. B. Hutchinson. She went twice out to Australia 
during her married life, returning to Cheltenham in 1862, and 
when her father died in 1865 she went back to the old home 
with her son and her two little girls to live with her uncle and 

My acquaintance with Mrs Sarah Burns Hutchinson began 
in the year 1896. It was the Centenary of the Poet's death, and 
some friends and myself interested in Mossgiel and Mauchline 
w^ere busy making arrangements for the laying of the foundation 
stone of the Burns Tower and Cottage Homes, midway between 
the village of Mauchline and the farm of Mossgiel. We felt that 
the years the Poet spent at Mossgiel and Mauchline were the 
brightest and the hapj)iest years of his life. He was then 
in the \igour of his manhood, and at no other period of his life 
did his wonderful genius find voice more frequently in song and 
poem, and we thought that something should be done to mark 


his residence there. Along with the Tower we proposed to erect 
a number of Cottages for the use of the aged deserving poor, 
particularly among the peasantry. The scheme appealed to Mrs 
Burns Hutchinson, and from the very first she gave it her whole- 
hearted sympathy and support. She said enough money had 
been spent on mere statues and memorials to the Poet's memory. 
" Better," she said, " to build cottages and give rooms to old couples 
and aged widows and widowers, with something in addition to live 
upon ; they could bring their own furniture, do their own cooking, 
and make their rooms home-like. Burns's warm-hearted 
sympathy would go with work like this." That was exactly the 
scheme of the Glasgow-Mauchline Society, and it has proved a 
great success. As the then President of the Society it was my 
privilege to invite some of the representatives of the Poet to be 
present at the laying of the foundation stone, and to stay with me 
for the occasion. She was then too frail and aged to travel from 
Cheltenham, but she wrote me a touching letter ; and her sister, 
Miss Annie B. Burns, and her daughter, Miss Daisy Burns 
Hutchinson, both accepted the invitation. Ever since, the close 
friendship between their and our families has been a source of 
most smcere pleasure. 

In 1902 I had the privilege of visiting them in their old 
family home at Cheltenham, specially dear to me as a lover of 
Burns, because his two soldier sons had spent there the twilight 
of their days. Mrs Burns Hutchinson was then over 80 
years of age, but she happened to be feeling fairly well, and was 
able to go about and join us at dinner. She shewed us 
a number of relics of the Poet, including his writing-desk and his 
handsome old-fashioned eight-day clock — both got in Mauchline 
when he and Bonnie Jean took up house — also a portrait of her 
father, Lieut.-Colonel James Glencairn Burns, painted to the 
order of Sir James Shaw when Lord Mayor of London. Another 
portrait attracted me. It was that of htr uncle, Robert Armour 
(Bonnie Jean's brother), who had gone to London, and was very 
successful there. Mrs Burns Hutchinson told me that when she 
was a girl, her uncle Armour, took her to all the London sights, 


including W'eslaiinster and St. PauTs, and wa-. always telling her 
how wonderful everything in London was ; btit she vividly 
remembered the old town of her childhood, and cried out, " I 
would far rather see the Midsteeple at Dumfries." Even at 
80 her thoughts would often go back to her happy childhood at 
Dumfries, and she would tell how Bonnie Jean had taken her, 
a little motherless bairn, to her heart, letting her sleep at nights in 
the same bed with her, and every morning waking her up with a 
kiss. From other sources we know that Mrs Burns Hutchinson 
as a child was the sunshine in the life of Bonnie Jean during 
her widowhood. To me the visit was a most delightful one. It 
has been said that when we hold intercourse with the descendants 
of great men, we are carried back through the links of a long 
chain of associations until we seem to hold intercourse with the 
men themselves ; and so, looking at the portraits on the walls, and 
the numerous rehcs of the Poet, and talking familiarly with his 
nearest living representatives, one seemed to get nearer, and to almost 
hold intercourse with Burns himself. When coming away she 
pressed a little parcel into my pocket with the words, " For your 
bairnies — you know I always like to think of them." 

She was intensely fond of the Old Border Ballads, and of 
everything connected with Scotland. Sometimes I would send 
her a brace of grouse packed in heather when it was in full bloom, 
and she would tell me how the sweet smell of the heather made 
her think she was back again in the dear "north countrie," with 
its heath-clad hills and flowery glens. Latterly she was loo frail 
to write much, and the letters were mostly written by other 
members of the family. I may be permitted to give the last 
letter she wrote to me. The handwriting is shaky but quite 
legible. It is dated 15th August, 1905. A few days previously 
I had been visiting Ellisland and Dumfries along with my eldest 
boy, and initiating him in the Burns lore of the district. We 
went to the room where the Poet died, and to St. Michael's 
Churchyard and the Mausoleum. We stood bareheaded beside 
the tomb and [)aid our homage to the memory of the Poet. I 
happened to remember that I had in my pocket two letters from 


the grand-daughter and great-grand-daughter of Burns received a 
day or two before. The letters seemed to contain a mandate ; so 
in their name, as well as our own, we again reverently uncovered 
in his honour, and thought of him and all that belonged to him. 
Writing to her soon after, I told her of our visit to Dumfries and 
how it had affected us, and her reply was as follows : — 

"Cheltenham, I5lh August, 1905. 
Dear Mr Gemmill, — I feel I must write a line myself to thank you for 
the kind thought of me on the I2lh. I was so interested to hear of your visit 
to my grandfather's grave. My time is Hearing its close, and I ' am wearin*^ 
awa to the Land o' the Leal.' — Believe me, your old friend, 

Sarah Burns Hutchinson." 

She was then in her eighty-fourth year and very frail, though her 
mind was active and clear. Gradually her infirmities grew on her, 
and for the last year or two of her life she was a com[)lete inv.tlid, 
hut surrounded with every comfort which kind hearts and gentle 
hands could bestow. Her sister. Miss Annie B. Burns, and her 
own daughter, Miss Daisy Burns Hutchinson, devoted themselves 
to her with the most loving care. The end came, as I have said, 
on 1 2th July, 1909, and on the following Friday, in the presence 
of a few close personal friends, she was reverently laid to rest at 

Those who had the privilege of knowing her will not soon 
forget her personality. Cultured and gracious, with pleasing^ 
refined features, bright intelligence, and frank manners, the kindly 
smile on her face as she talked made you feel in full touch and 
sympathy with her, and as one who knew her well once remarked, 
"she shewed her ' Burns' blood in her kindliness of heart and 
generous impulses." She had travelled more than falls to the lot 
of most people, and had met with her own share of human 
sorrow, but she had a strong will and courageous spirit. 

She was justly proud of the name and fame of her dis- 
tinguished forebear. She knew intimately his poems, songs, and 
letters, and was interested in everything connected wiih the 
places he had made famous. She was proud, too, of the world's 
growing appreciation of the genius of Burns, but though she knew 


she was the nearest representative and closest link to him, her 
independent spirit would not allow her to obtrude her personality 
on the public. 

The lineal descendants of the Poet's eldest son, Robert, 
became extinct two years ago with the death of Mrs Burns 
Thomas, and now it is only the James Glencairn Burns branch of 
the Poet's family that survives. But happily there are no signs of 
it becoming extinct. There remains Miss Annie B. Burns, grand- 
daughter of Burns, and she, with her niece, Miss Daisy Burns 
Hutchinson, continues to reside at Cheltenham. Then, in the 
fourth generation, there are the late Mrs Sarah Burns Hutchinson's 
children — (i) Mrs Burns Scott, of Adelaide ; (2) Robert Burns 
Hutchinson, of Langley, Vancouver ; (3) Mrs Gowring, wife of 
the Principal of St. Bede's School, Eastbourne ; and (4) Miss 
Daisy Burns Hutchinson of Cheltenham. Of the fifth generation 
there are six members — two young sons and three daughters of 
Robert Burns Hutchinson, and one young son of Mrs Gowring. 
I feel sure that admirers of the writings of Burns, and those who 
love his memory, will extend to the surviving descendants of the 
Poet their kindliest thoughts and warm-hearted sympathy in their 
recent bereavement. 


We cordially endorse every word which Mr f lernmill has written. We 
also knew the estimable old lady, and for many years kept up a close corres- 
pondence with her. Her letters to us number over sixty, interesting extracts 
from which may form the subject of a future article in the Chronicle. — [Ed.] 



The fame of Burns extends far beyond his native land ; it is not 
even bounded by the limits of the British Empire. Our Poet has 
a world-wide reputation, which is not diminishing, but daily 
increasing as the Scot penetrates to all parts of the globe and 
carries the immortal "Poems" with him. The most national 
of poets, Burns is at the same time one of the most cosmopolitan, 
for has he not sung of home and love and freedom — sentiments 
which are common to humanity, and which find responses in the 
hearts of men everywhere ? Appealing to many of the highest 
and best features in Scottish history and character as Burns did, 
he struck notes, which, while national in their form, are universal 
in their essence. The author of " A Man's a Man for a' that" 
needs only to be known to become a favourite in every land. 
Below are collected a few of the best tributes which notable men 
and women of various European nationalities have paid to Burns 
and his genius. The collection lays no claim to completeness ; 
it merely lays the foundation for an anthology of the finest 
tributes of foreigners to our Bard. 


Alas for the cruelty of Fate ! the days of the Bard were but few ; scarce 

had the daughters of song woven the wreath of glory for his brow, when his 

country had lost him for ever ! 

Pierre Barrieu, 1823. 

Burns was more than half a musician. 

Stendhal (Makie-Henri Beyle), 1824. 

Burns is of that family of writers whose power reaches the heart : Pectus 
est qiwd facit disertos. With him there is no literary preoccupation, none of 
the beauties of the room ; he lives in the pure air amid Nature. He is not one 
of those pastoral muses who only visit the country on fine days to recoup 


themselves after all their luKuriant winter dissipations ; courtly muses, who 
only sing of Nature in her pleasant garb ; whose forests, like those of Virgil, 
are dignified as a consul ; who transfer their amours from tlie city to bring 
them back to the shams of a gravelled walk and an artificial river. 

Leon he Waii.t.y, i<S43. 

Beranger, the Burns of France, used to say that this ["A Man's a Man 
for a' that "] was a song, not for an age, but for eternity. 

J. CUTHBERT llAOnEN, NoteS OH the Soiigs of Bwiis. 

At last, after so many years, we escape from the measured declamation — 

we hear a man's voice ! Much better, we forget the voice in the emotion which 

it expresses, we feel this motion reflected in ourselves, we enter into relations 

with a soul. Then form seems to fade away and disappear : I will say that 

this is the great feature of modern poetry : Burns has reached it seven or eight 


li. A. Taine, 1S63. 

Burns had nolliing to learn and nothing to unlearn ; he shot up as spon- 
taneously as the daisy of his own mountains. 

Edmom) Scherer, 1881. 

Where Berirand strives, above all, to be picturesque, Burns [in "The 
Cottar's Saturday Night"] shows himself — in addition to this — cordial, moral, 
Christian, patriotic. His episode of Jenny introduces and personifies the 
chastity of emotion ; the Bible, read aloud, casts a religious glow over the 
whole scene. Then come those lofty thoughts upon the greatness of old Scot- 
land, which is based upon such home scenes as these. Sic fort is Etruria crevit. 

C. A. Sainte-Beuve. 

Weigli his errors, his faults, as heavily as you like, the scale containing 
the pure gold outbalances that containing the base lead. Admiration increases 
in proportion as you examine his fine qualities. 


It may safely be said that more touching, sublime poetry than that of 

Burns was never written. 

Paul Bi.ouet ("Max O'REr.i,"). 

I admire, rather do 1 love, Robert Burns passionately ; and, however 
ignorant I may be of the language in which he sings of his violet heaths and 
the blue eyes of his Jenn}'! still I always have his verses near at hand on the 


shelf of the true poets, poets of Nature, near to our Pierre Dupont, singer of 
strawberries and fine oxen : — 

" I have two fine oxen in my stable, 
Two fine while oxen, flecked with red." 

But the Scotch bagpipe has more power and resonance than the pipe of I'ierre 

Dupont of Lyons ; and, in addition, your Robert Burns lived a hundred years 

too soon. 

Alphonse Daudet, i8q6. 

. This noble, sincere, powerful spirit — powerful, because he has 

drawn from his native soil the inspiration of his songs and the patriotic 

sentiment of his writings. 

Jules Clarktik, 1896. 

What little I know of Burns gives nie the idea ofa great poet — truly 

sincere and very savoury ; something like our Pierre Dupont, but with far 

more art and power. 

Jui-ES Lemaitre, 1896. 

Ill the whole of English literature there is no more beautiful tribute than 

his rendered to the virtues of the peasant, nor any finer description of labour's 


Mme. p. Julette Adam, 1896. 


We esteem this highly- praised Robert Burns amongst the first poetical 

spirits which the past century has produced. 

Goethe, 1829. 

The total impression of his poems is, and remains always, that ofa candid, 

healthy, tender, fresh and mirthful soul— of a fine, free, reflecting and clear 


AiJOLPH Wacner, iS-;5. 

Millions of yet unborn generations will delight in the poems, in which he 

has made such admirable use of the material entrusted to him in the Scottish 

dialect, working it out into such exquisite forms in songs that will certainly be 

acre pereiinns. 

J. G. Kohl, 1844. 

Neither Pope with his smooth verses, nor Lord Bolingbroke with his 
sceptical wit, nor Dr Johnson amid his worshippers, gave forth the first truly 


original note which announced a new ph.ise in ihe poetry of Great Britain ; 
from the Banks of the Doon, out of a cottage in Scotland, rose the wood'lark 
who uttered it. 


. . . Tlic iii.inl)- and national trumpet-notes of the Scotch peasant- 

Alois Bkandi., 1886. 

I find in Burns that Celtic fire and power of iniai^iiiation, thu humour — 
now delicate, now light, now grotes(jue — ^but above all that wonderful eye for 
Nature, which was peculiar to the Celtic mind. 

KuNO Meyick. 


For the last thirty years no country has produced poets who have under- 
stood the language of solitude, and transfused the very soul of Nature into 
their verse like Burns, Crabbe, Wordsworth. . . 

This very great Scottish poet. 

Mazzini, 1829. 

Gakihai.di, 1865. 

Such his life, and such his verses, in which beat all the affections, all 

human sentiments — love, enthusiasm, compassion, indignation ; and all speak 

the language of truth. 

GuisKi'PK Chiakini, 1886. 

. . . The vigorous and most original poetry of the Bard of Scotland. 
Oi.iviERO Baccarim, 1894. 

Robert Burns appears to me to have laid tjpen in tiie poetry of his country 

both doors and windows to the breath of revolution. In rough outline, in 

idyllic emotion, in sarcasm and in tenderness, in blasphemy and in prayer, in 

negation and in aspiration, he seems to conjure up the ethics and esthetics of 

a new philosophy. 

GiosuK Carducci, 1896. 

As for Burns, in spite of the sentiments and passions which belong to his 
period, he has a certain delicacy and refinement which seem to be his very 
own, and there are in some of his lyrics, in some bits of dialect, in a certain 
feeling of the Scottish soil, qualities which excite the lively admiration of a 


stranger ; and it seems to me, for example, that one would need to have a 
truly Scottish soul to fully lay hold of the beauties of tlie " Lament of Mary, 
Queen of Scots, on the Approach of Spring." 

Angelo de Gukerxatis, 1896. 

To me the fundamental basis of the eesthetic worth of a work of art lies in 

its form and meaning, and this in the songs of Burns is perfect. His verses 

sound easy and sweet, like a piece of music, the rhythms and refrains, the 

majors and minors move and follow and alternate with a graceful and alluring 

playfulness that combines the smoothness of a reed with the stately march of 

lofty poetry. 

Mario Pilo, 1896. 

Little wonder is it that Burns is worshipped from the Orkneys to the 
Tweed. He has extraordinary richness of language, wealth of imagery, grace- 
fulness, vivacity, tenderness of feeling, and a sincerity which sometimes, as in 
the " Tragic Fragment," becomes affecting. 

Antonio Fo(;azzai<o, 1896. 

Robert Burns seems to me to be worthy to be admired among the most 

admired, for he became and remained a great poet in a condition of life in 

which others would have become less than man. 

Akturo Graf, 1896. 


I consider your Burns one of the most beautiful poets of whom humanity 
has cause to be proud. I admire and love him as a friend, as a brother in the 
spirit. He is at one and the same lime strong and sweet, and has nothing in 
common with those scribblers in metre, these rhetoricians, those impostors who 
are the plague of literature, and who, unfortunately, too often usurp the place 
and influence of the poets of Nature, artists, and born geniuses. 

George Eekoud, 1896. 

. . . Your great National Poet, Robert Burns, who is so well known 
in Flemish Belgium. I have translated several of his most beautiful songs, 
and my very good friend, Frans de Cort, the Flemish poet, has translated at 
least fifty. On the occasion of his centenary, my daughter and I have com- 
posed several verses in honour of the illustrious Poet and inimitable songster 

of the whole world. 

Emmanuel Heil, 1896. 



Scotland's greatest poetic Genius. 

Gkorg Brandes, 1875. 


■■ Fri)ni Louis Kossuth in exile, to Robert Burns in imniorlalily. "' 

' The man o' independent mind 
Is king o' men for a' that.' 

Kossuth's Inscription in Album at Alloway Cottage. 

This great Genius, who has rendered himself immortal throughout 

all free nations. 

Maurus Jokai, 1896. 


O Burns, thou joy of my young heart ! 

Thou lark, thou soul of Nature's song ! 
.V spark of thee, and of thine art, 

Hath wandered with me far and long I 





The Carmen Series : Ediled by Galloway Kyle. The Poems of Michael 
Bruce, wilh Memoir and Review of the notable Logan Controversy, by 
John MacFarlane. (London : The Author's Association, 47 Fleet Street.) 
This is an admirable bj-ochure of 127 pp., one of a most commendable and 
useful series issued by the Author's Association of London. We regret that 
the demands on our space rendered it impossible for us to bring the series, and 
especially this example of its merits, under the notice of our readers at an 
earlier date. Mr MacFarlane's masterly treatment of the ever-recurring Logan 
controversy is sufficient of it.self to convince the doubtful of the wrong done to 
the " Scottish Keats " by the unscrupulous and unprincipled Logan, who, 
unfortunately, was entrusted with the posthumous publication of the composi- 
tions of the gifted but ill-fated Michael Bruce. The " Ode to the Cuckoo" is 
imperishable, and sufficient of itself to immortalise the "sleepless soul" that 
perished all too soon. The volume contains all that Bruce is said to have 
written, and the task has been sympathisingly done by the Editor, enabling 
the unprejudiced to form a just estimate of Bruce's powers as compared with 
the depreciations which are indispensable to the Logan attacks on his memory. 
We note that the volume is dedicated to the Federated Burns Clubs and 
Scottish Societies, which, coupled with the modest price (is in paper covers 
and 2s 6d in cloth), ought to ensure it a wide sale in both of these spheres. 
We heartib' commend it to our readers. 

Catalogue of thi-: M'Kie Burnsiana Library— Holograph MSS. ; 
i'aintings ; Engravings; Etchings; Photographs; and Relics. Compiled 
by David Sneddon. (Kilmarnock : Standard Printing Works, October, 

When the M'Kie Library was purchased and handed over to the Kilmarnock 
Corporation for preservation in the Burns Monument Museum, a catalogue of 
the same was drawn up by Mr M'Kie, which was too meagre in detail to do 
anything like justice to the Kilmarnock collection or .serve as a handy guide to 
the numerous enquirers who desired to make use of it within a reasonable time. 
As a matter of fact, much of it was not catalogued at all, consequently the 
difficulties in the way of the searcher for information were almost insuperable. 
To put matters on a better footing. Captain Sneddon voluntarily undertook 
the laborious task of going over the whole collection systematically and 
grouping the various departments under distinguishing headings in a reliable 
catalogue, to which reference could be made with the minimum of trouble. 


The result is r.ow before the public, and reflects the highest credit upon the 
compiler as a model work of the kind. To give some idea of the compre- 
hensiveness and business-like methods adopted by Captain Sneddon we need 
only enumerate the headings under which everything of interest is scheduled 
in most orderly fashion : — The Burns Holograph MSS. (the most extensive 
and valuable in the world) head the list ; then follow Holograph MSS. other 
than Burns's ; Editions of the Poet's Works, chronologically arranged ; 
Editions without dates ; Foreign Editions and Translations ; Imperfect 
Editions ; Clarinda Correspondence ; Single Poems and Chapbooks ; 
Burnsiana, arranged chronologically ; Burnsiana without dates ; Burnsiana 
Scraps; Pamphlets, &c., bound in volumes ; Scrap Books; Music; Miscel- 
laneous Items ; Relics, &c. ; Oil Paintings ; and lastly. Etchings, Engravings, 
and Photographs. The Burns Library (the most complete in existence), we 
may mention, has been catalogued, not merely with bare titles and dates, but 
with the title typography so indicated that the particular edition can easily be 
recognised. The Kilmarnock Museum is indispensable to the Burns student, 
and Captain Sneddon's catalogue, in a sense, is a home educator. It is 
published by the Corporation at the modest price of sixpence, which puts it 
within the reach of the humblest. 

The Poetical Works ok Robert Burns. The Afton Edition. Edited, 
with Biographical Introduction, by Charles Annandale, M.A. , LL. D. 
Music harmonized by Harry Colin Miller, M.A., Mus. B. Pictures by 
Claude A. Shepperson. Four volumes. (London : The (iresham 
Publishing Company.) 
In common with all editions of our National Poet, this latest is to be welcomed 
for several reasons. It proves a widening interest in Burns, a growing 
appreciation of his genius and position in British literature, and it will pro- 
bably extend present knowledge of him and his works by adding to the circle of 
his readers and students. All these things it may accomplish and yet fall 
short of the standard of perfection which, there can be no doubt, the publishers 
honestly think it has reached. There are two classes or orders of readers to 
be catered for — ist, the general, for whom the approximately correct presen- 
tation of Burns in the mass meets all practical requirements ; and 2nd, the 
more critical and exacting adherents of the Burns cult who emphasise the 
necessity of an immaculate text and the accurate statement of biographical 
facts in both outline and detail. To the former this Afton edition will chiefly 
appeal ; to the latter it offers little of fresh interest, if we except its musical 
antl artistic features. These are of interest to all. Its claims for public atten- 
tion rest upon the Annandale introduction, Mr Shepperson's drawings, the 
reproduction of the Skirving portrait of the Poet, and the melodies, with instru- 
mental accompaniments, composing the fourth volume. The portrait is after 


D. O. Hill's calotype of Skirving's crayon, and is prinled on tinted paper. It 
comes nearer a reduced fac-simi/e of the original than any other we have seen, 
and is so beautifully done, and so full of Burns character — of his personal 
fascination, social charm, and the fire of genius apparent in the large glowing 
eyes — that one could wish an enlarged Skirving so executed to take the place 
of the Nasniyth in the prevailing conception of the Poet's personality. In the 
Afton plate the modelling is admirable, in respect of both the massive head 
and individual features, the shading is managed with exquisite subtlety and 
skill, and the reflected light under the chin is at once delicate and effective. 
Of Mr Shepperson's drawings we are frankly nowise enamoured. He has 
missed the artistic treatment of reality, the character of lowland scenery, and 
his figure models are not after anything we know of the Scottish type. " The 
Twa Brigs" is wholly destitute of congruity, and a nude " Cutty Sark " is 
perpetrated in complete disregard of what her name demands and how she is 
described in the poem. Some of the drawings, like " To a Mouse," are vigor- 
ous and sufficiently realistic ; but so far as they aim at being literal they are 
obvious, and so far as they are imaginative they rarely serve to illuminate the 
text. Turning to Mr Colin Miller's work, it seems to be uniformly excellent 
and judicious. The old airs are given in all their native simplicity, and to the 
preservation of that quality the accompaniments have been adjusted. The 
latitude Mr Miller has allowed himself is outlined in a Preface marked by 
common sense and sympathetic discrimination. A selection of songs has been 
made from those in common demand and most suitable for general use, but as 
the number chosen extends to one hundred and ten or thereby, and all the 
standard favourites seem to be included, it must be conceded that the limit is 
far from being ungenerous. Concerning the melodies, the editor has followed 
the simple principle of adopting those most in use. He has not hesitated to 
discard the airs to which Burns wrote some of the songs when they demand a 
voice of exceptional compass. To the same end the keys are kept as low as 
possible, to suit the melodies to tlie average voice. A great deal might be said 
in favour of Mr Miller's methods and objects, in so far as they tend to give 
the songs of Burns a new and wider vogue, to overcome the silly prejudice 
against them on the score of vulgarity ; and to lead up taste to a true apprecia- 
tion of their beauty, both musical and poetic. The musical editor's aims carry 
their own commendation, and his achievement is wholly praiseworthy. 

Coming more than a decade after the compilation of the Centenary and 
Wallace-Chambers editions of Burns, and an interval of great activity in the 
Burns section of the literary world, Dr Annandale had certain great advantages 
when he undertook his editorial and biographical labours. He is obviously 
not a specialist in Burns literature, and, what is more surprising, he has not 
kept abreast of current enquiry and criticism. Almost at the outset of the 
" Sketch of the Poet's Life " he falls into some of the irritatinrr little mistakes 


which do more than errors of judgment to unciermine a reader's confidence. 
He speaks, for example, of Burns's father as William Burness or Burnes, 
although his father's name was Robert Burnes, as the name appears in the 
parish records of Dunnotlar, and William signed himself Burnes. There is, 
again, no satisfactory evidence that, William Burnes was bred a gardener. The 
statement rests wholly upon a divided tradition, and is opposed to ;iny 
reasonable view of probabilities. Still again, with reference to the lillle 
school presided over by John Murdoch, it is said " Burns's father in this 
matter was following the lead of his own father, who had made this like pro- 
vision for the education of his children at Clochnahill." For this statement 
there is no evidence whatever, and it is absolutely certain that there was a 
school in the neighbourhood before Robert Burnes went to Clochnahill. In 
more important matters Dr Annandale is equally careless or culpably ignorant. 
Touching the Highland Mary episode, he quotes, without note or comment, 
the note attributed to Burns upon his song, " My Highland Lassie," first 
published by Cromek, notwithstanding Dick's exposure of Cromek's methods 
and the doubt thrown upon the authenticity of the note. It may have been 
written by Burns, it may have been manufactured by either Cromek or 
Cunningham, but, under the searchlight thrown upon it, it meanwhile stands 
condemned as a fact of Burns literature.* In matters of opinion it is no less 
impossible to accept Dr Annandale's lead. He disposes of the technique of 
Burns's serious verse by a reference to the repeated maintenance of its defects, 
and reaches the extraordinary conclusion that " true poetic beauty, artistic 
perfection in the use of language, are but rarely to be met with in Burns's 
poems." The subject cannot be argued here, but most students of Burns will 
probably concur in the opinion that Dr Annandale might well have left that 
comment unwritten. He leaves it clear that Burns possessed, in full measure, 
the highest f<irm of artistry, the subtle ars celandi arlem. But his whole esti- 
mate of Burns is vacillating, inconclusive, and in parts absolutely colourless. 

It is not part of our present purpose to examine the Afton text line by 
line, even had space permitted. There are, however, it may be noted, at 
least four verbal errors in the "Ode for General Washington's Birthday." 
Though correctly given in its chronological place, " Of a' the airts " contains 
the usual stock errors in the version given with the music in the fourth volume. 
Further, the " Wag in Mauchline " is not James Smith, but John Brown, 
clockmaker, as the recovery of the MS., seven or eight years ago, established 
on the authority of Burns himself. It is impossible to go further. The 
glaring mistakes noted Dr Annandale could and should have avoided in 
a work like the Afton Bums, upon which it is evident the publishers have not 
grudged outlay. He could and should have guarded himself against such 
errors by careful consultation of authorities, and though we have no desire to 
obtrude the Federation or its work gratuitously in any vain -glorious manner, we 
* See article on " Highland Mary " in present issue of the Chronicle. 


feel constrained to say that in the file of the Burns Chrotiicle he would have 
found sufficient original material to have guided him on many points on which he 
evidently lacks information. The consolation must 'be, that, with its rich 
binding in crimson — lavishly decorated and lettered in gold— and generally 
attractive appearance, it may carry a knowledge of Burns to a multitude of 
new readers ; and our earnest wish is that the publishers may secure thai 
measure of success which their ambitious venture undoubtedly deserves. 

New Engravinc; : " The Inauguration of Rt)l)cit Burns as I'oel Laureate of 
the Lodge Canongate Kilwinning ; Edinburgh, March, 17S7." (Edin- 
burgh : T. W. Watt, Fine Art Publishers, London Street.) 

Since the presentation, in 1862, of Stewart Watson's canvas of the above to 
the Grand Lodge of Scotland, by James Burnes, K.IL, F.R.S., the engravings 
of it, issued in endless sizes and all sorts of mediums, have rendered it so 
familiar to the Burns cult and the general public that we are perhaps justified 
in saying that it has ceased to be a coveted possession in the estimation of 
Burns collectors as we have hitherto known it. In speaking thus, we mean to 
say that it has become vulgarised by the cheap reproductions which stare one 
in the face almost everywhere and frequently amid the most incongruous 
surroundings. But the originalstill retains its interest. Whether or not the 
painting represents an actual incident of the Poet's sojourn in Edinburgh (its 
correctness as a historical fact has been questioned) there is general agreement 
that it is exceptionally valuable as a gallery of authentic portraits of the Poet's 
patrons, friends, and Edinburgh notabilities of the period. Among these may 
be mentioned Fergusson of Craigdarroch, the Earl of Glencairn, Millar of 
Dalswinton, Whitefoord of Ballochmyle, Lord Monboddo, Henry Mackenzie, 
Alex. Cunningham, WiUiam Nicol, William Cruickshank, Allan Masterton, 
Dugald Stewart, William Creech, William Smeilie, Peter Hill, James Boswell 
of Auchinleck, Alex. Nasmyth, Robert Ainslie, and many others, numbering 
sixty in all. It will thus be seen that the picture is a 7'ade ineciiin of Burns 
portraiture, and therefore of the greatest interest to antiquarians and Burns 
enthusiasts. Next to the original is, of course, a good transcript of it, and 
this, we are glad to say, has now been supplied by the publishers from a most 
meritorious etching by Mr Charles Ewart, who has so dexterously and boldly 
managed the lights and shadows that the effect is as richly harmonious and 
impressive as the picture itself. The plate is 20 by 14 inches, and with the 
mounts 30 by 26 inches. It is therefore entitled to rank as one of the most 
imposing and artistic Burns engravings ever offered to the public. We may 
add that a goodly-sized key accompanies it, and greatly adds to ils value. 
Altogether, it is a most desirable acquisition for the private collector, and 
should be hung on the walls of every Burns Club in the Kingdom. 


THESE indexes (r) of portraits, and (2) of illustrations other 
than portraits, that appear in numbers 1-16 of the Chronicle^ 
are supplementary to those in the volume for 1908. An index to 
the " Notes and Queries " will be included in a subsequent issue. 

J. C.E. 

I. Index of Portraits. 

Adams, James. X., 100. 

Angus, William Craire. X., 96. 

Armour, Jean. See Burns, Mrs Rohert. 

Austin, Alfred. VI., 27. 

Bain, Marcus. VI., 107. 

Baikd, J. G. A. VIII., 96. 

Begg, Robert Burns. X., 69. 

Brand, David. VI., 98. 

Breckenridge, William. VI., 23. 

Buow.n, Colin Rae-. VII., 105. 

Burns, Annie Beckett. IV., 84 ; VI., 34. 

Burns, Eliza. See Everitt, Mrs B. J. 

Burns, J.\mes Glencairn. IV., 82. 

Burns, Robert. Beugo Engraving. V. , 56. 

— Miers Silhouette. I., 89; V., 58. 

— Nasmyth Bust, 1787. I., 80 ; IV., 76 ; V., 52. 

— Nasmyth Bust, Thomson Replica. \'., 53. 

— Nasmyth Bust, Auchendrane Replica. \'. , 54. 

— Nasmyth Full-length. V., 55. 

— Reid Miniature. V., 59. 

— Skirving Drawing. V., 60. 

— Taylor Cabinet. I., 83 ; V., 57. 

Burns, Mrs Robert. V., 61 ; IX., 106. Bonnie Jean and Grandchild, 

Sarah Burns. IV., 77. 
Burns, Robert, The Second. IV., 78. 


Burns, Sarah. See Hutchinson, Mrs B. W. 
Burns, Thomas. IV., 67. 
Burns, William Nicol. IV., 8r. 

EvERiTT, .Mrs Bartholomew JoMEs (Eliza Burns). IV., 79. 
EvERiTT, Martha Burns. See Thomas, Mrs M. 
Freeland, William. XL, 47. 
Gemmill, J. Leiper. VI., 95. 
Glover, J. J. VI., 44. 

Go wring, Mrs George H. See Hutchinson, V. B. 
Hutchinson, Annie Vincent Burns (Mrs James Scott). IV., 85. 
Hutchinson, Mrs B. W. (Snah Burns). IV., 83. Bonnie Jean and Grand- 
child, S.irah Burns. IV. , 77. 
Hutchinson, Dorothea Burns. IV., 89. 

Hutchinson, Margaret Constance Burns. IV., 88 ; VI., 35. 
Hutchinson, Robert Burns. IV., 86. 
Hutchinson, Violet Burns (Mrs G. II. Gowring). IV., 87. 
Innes, Andrew. XIII. , 85. 
Kelvin, Lord. VI., hi. 
Killin, Thomas. VI., 104. 
Kirkpatrick, Andrew J. VI., 14. 
Macfadzean, James. XII., 27. 
Mackay, David. VI., iS ; XVI., 95. 
Mackenzie, Archib.\ld. VI., 122. 
M'Millan, W. S. VI., 103. 
M'Naught, Duncan. VI., 18; XVI., loi. 
Reid, George. XV., 95. 
RosEBERV, Earl of. VI., 5. 
Samson, Thomas ("Tani"). XVI., 78. 
Scott, Mrs James. See 11\]tchis<,o\ , A. \'. B. 
Sinton, John. VIII., 127. 
Smith, John Campbell. VI., 65. 
Sneddon, David. VI., iS ; XVI., 98. 
Spiers, John. VI., 21. 
Sulley, Philip. X., 65. 
Tennant, Ale.xander. XV., 92. 
Tennant, Charles. XV., 89. 
Tennant, David. XV., 86. 
Tennant, John. XV., 83. 
Tennant, William. XV., So. 
Thomas, Mrs Matthew (M. B Everitt). IV., 80. 
Train, Joseph. XIII., 79. 
Wallace, Hugh R. VI., 90. 


Wallace, William. \I., i6. 
Watson, Sir John. \II., 12. 
WiiEATi.KV, Mr. \'III., 119. 

II. Index of Illustrations othkr ihan Portraits. 

Aftox Waikk. W, gb. 

Alloway. Hums Cottage, a;ra 1807. X., 84. 

— Burns Cottage in 1829, by H. W. Williams (" Grecian " Williams). 

v., 62; X.,S5. 
— Burns Cottage, modern cottage. X., 89. 

— Burns Cottage, interior. III., 76; X., 84. 

— Burns's Cottage and the road to it, three maps. .\., 81-3. 

— Burns Monument. III., 82. 

— Kirk and Kirkyard. III., 78. 

Angus, Willi Craibic, Book-plates of. XIII., 106-7. 

AUCHENBAY, Ochiltree. XVI., 72. 

Ayr. " Auld " and first " New Brig " o' Ayr, fifty years ago. X VI. , 42 

— Auld Brig of Ayr. XII., 86-7. 
Bardrainy Villa, near Port-Glasgow. XIV., 89. 
Barwharrie. Ochiltree. XVI., 73. 

Bolton. Tombstone erected by Gilbert Burns. V., 106. 

Bridgeton (Glasgow) Burns Club, Shield for Choir Competition. XII., no. 

Brown, Richard, Flis House in Port-Glasgow. XIV., 93. 

Burns Cottage. See Alloway. 

Bust of Robert Burn.s at Carlisle. VIII., 117. 

Caerlaverock Castle. IX, , 76. 

Cawdor Castlk. .XIII., 47. 

Chlokis. See Lorimkk, Jean. 

Devon, River. XII., 63, 65. 

DOON. Brig o' Doon, III , 83; River, .XII., 92. 

Ellislanu. Farmhouse. VII., 86 ; IX., 66. 

Fac-similes. Burns's "Ode for Washington's Birthday." I.X., 58-60. 

— Early [1772] Burns Manuscript. I., 39-42. 

— Verse by Burns in a Copy of Elphinston's Edition of .Martial's " Epigrams.'" 

III., 137. 
-- Entries (1788) in .Mauchline Kirk-session Records. II., 57. 
-- Gilbert Burns's Signature. V., 105. 

— Mrs Robert Burns's Signature. IX., 84-5. 
Fail, River. II., 61. 

Finlaystone House (Xorth View). XI\'., 85. 
Glenconner, Ochiltree. X\I., 71. 


Highland Mary. Statue at Dunoon, V., 109; Unveiling of Statue, 

VI., 109. 
Irvine. Burns's Lodging. XIV., 42. 

— David Sillar's House. XIV., 56. 

— David Sillar's Grave in Irvine Kirkyard. XIV., 57. 

— Dr John Mackenzie's House. XIV., 59. 
-- Glasgow Vennel. XIV., 41. 

— Glasgow Vennel Heckling Shop. XIV., 36. 

— Heckling Shop in Montgomerie Boyd's Close. XIV., 39. 
-- High Street in Burns's Time. XIV., 47. 

— Montgomerie Boyd's Close. XIV., 38. 

— Provost Hamilton's House. XIV., 62. 

— Templeton's Shop. XIV., 45. 

Kelso. Abbey and Bridge on Tweed. XIII., 43. 
Kilmarnock. Burns Monument in Kay Public Park. IV., 95. 
KiLMAURS. Glencairn Monument. XIV,, 82. 

— Kilmaurs Cross and Council House. XVI., 37. 

— Kirklon and Kilmaurs Church. XVI., 34. 

Kirkosvvald. Views in Parish, Village, and Churchyard. XV., 27-74. 

Lincluden Abbey. IX., 74. 

LoRiMER, Jean. Memorial Stone to " Chloris," in Preston Street Burial- 

Ground, Edinburgh. XL, loi. 
Mauchline. Armours' Burying- Plkce. V., 83. 

— Castle, v., 76. 

— • Elbow Tavern. V., 84. 

— Kirkyard. VII., 68, 69, 71, 72. 

— Nance Tannock's. V., 80. 

— National Burns Memorial and Cottage Homes. VI., 87 ; VIII. , 92. 

— Plan of Mauchline. II., 54 ; V., 81. 

— Poosie Nansie's. V., 77. 
Mauchline Burn. II., 63. 

Mauchline Parish. Plan of Tarbolton, Stair, and Mauchline Parishes. 

II., 62. 
MONKTON. Church of St. Cuthbert. IV., 65. 
Monuments to Robert Burns — 

Alloway. III., 82. 

Kilmarnock. I V., 95. See aho Statues and Busts. 
MORHAM Mains. V., 100. 
Mossgiel. v., 71-2. 

NiTH, River. V., 87, 89 ; VII., 93 ; IX., 69. 
Ochiltree. Views in Parish of Ochiltree. XVI., 70 93. 
Plough. Old Scots Plough used' at Mossgiel by Burns. VII., 41. 


PORT-Gi.ASr.ow. Richard Krown's House. XIW, 93. 

Prestwick. Market Cross. I\'., 63. 

Stair Parish. Plan of Tarbolton, Stair, and Mauchline Parishes. II., 62. 

Statue of Highland Mary, Dunoon. V., 109; Unveiling of Statue, 

VI., 109. 
Statues and Bust.s ok Rohert Burns — 

Ayr. IV.. 126. 

Carlisle (Bust). VIII., 117. 

Chicago. I\"., 12S. 

Dumfries. I\'., 123. 

Dundee. l\.. 125. 

Glasgow. I\'., 124. 

Irvine. \'I., 25. 

Kilmarnock. I\'., 122. 

London. I\'., 125. 

New Vork. IV., 125. 

Paisley. IV., 127; VI., 116. 
Stkathearn. XIII., 45. 

Tarbolton I'arish. Plan of Tarl)olton, Stair, and M.iuchline Parishes. 
II., 62. 



Obituary. — We regret to report the death of Mr D. C. Wardrop, a 
prominent Glasgow Burnsian. The event tcok place with startling suddenness 
on 9th November. Mr Wardrop, who was 64 years of age, had lived a busy 
life. In business he was a commercial stationer, and his attention to his work 
was so assiduous that many wondered when he found time to attend to literary 
and social pursuits. He was a keen Conservative, and was actively identified 
with the work of Glasgow Conservative Association (Central). For many 
years he acted as secretary of the Broomielaw Ward Committee. He took 
part in forming the Glasgow Municipal League, and in other ways shewed his 
desire to stimulate an intelligent interest in municipal politics. As a Burnsian 
he was in great demand at literary evenings, and his many able and amusing 
lectures were always listened to with much pleasure. For a time he was 
secretary of the Sandyford Burns Club, and also took a prominent part in the 
Queen's Park Burns Club. He was one of the founders and the first secretary 
of the National Burns Club — the idea of the federation of the local clubs being 
prominent in his mind. Mr Wardrop was at once an indefatigable worker, a 
pleasant companion, and a good friend. His presence will be missed at many 
Burns gatherings. 



The objects of the Club are : — -The annual banquet in celebration of the 
birthday of the Immortal Bard of Scotland, Robert Burns ; occasional re-unions 
for the cultivation of social and intellectual intercourse among the members ; 
the encouragement of Scottish Literature and Music ; support of the Federa- 
tion of the Burns Clubs all over the world ; social meetings, i.e. assemblies, 
concerts, pic-nics, Hallowe'en suppers, and such functions as may be the 
vogue of the season. 

Without reference to nationality, all gentlemen who are admirers of the 
poetry and genius of Robert Burns, and of the imperishable principle 'enun- 
ciated in " A Man's a Man for a' that" are eligible for membership. 


Tlie committee is prepared to receive applications from gentlemen desiring 
to attend any of tiie Club's functions with a view to becoming members of the 
Club, and for the guidance of such, Rules 2 and 5 are quoted hereunder :^ 

2. The yearly subscription shall be One Guinea, payable in the 
month of September in each year. 

5. Every new member must be proposed aud seconded, in writing, 
by an existing member of the Club, and approved of by the Committee ; 
the entrance fee for any such Member being los 6d. Any member resign- 
ing must do so in writing, prior to Annual Business Meeting, addressed 
to the Honorary Secretary, not later than the 15th September in each 
Members of any Federation Club will be heartily welcomed. 


At the Annual Meeting of the Burns Federation Delegates, held at 
Dunfermline this year, Dr Andrew Carnegie was elected Honorary President, 
and Mr Durha^n, our President, was unanimously elected a Vice-President of 
the Federation. 

Next year's Federation Meeting is to be held on the first Saturday in 
September, at Lanark. The Federation is taking a leading part in founding 
a Chair of Scottish History and Literature in Glasgow University. 

The First Assembly of this season will be held in the large hall of the 
Portman Rooms, on Friday, December 3rd. 

A Sub-Committee is engaged upon consideration of the suggested recon- 
struction of the Club's Rules. 

A General Election Meeting will be held in December, probably on 
Tuesday, the 7th December, in The Red Cross Tavern, Paternoster Scjuare, E.C. 

The dates for which the Portman Rooms have been secured for the ist 
and 2nd Dances are Fridays, February nth and March iith, 1910. 

The Anniversary Festival, Tuesday, January 25th, 1910. 

A Whist Drive will be held towards the end of March, and the Summer 
Festival on the River in June. 

Hallowe'en Meeting, October 31st ; St. Andrew's Concert, November 
30th ; Whist Drive, October i6th- 

Mr Henry Durham, the retiring president of Club No. i — The London 
Robert Burns Club— and who at the Annual Meeting in Dunfermline was 
elected a vice-president of the Federation, has just completed fifty years' 
service in the City of London School for Boys. Mr Durham is a P"ellow of 
the Chemical Society, an original Fellow of the Physical Society of London, 
and has for many years been head Science Master of the famous school at 
which the present Prime Minister was a successful scholar. Ke hopes to have 
a little time to revisit Scotland next year at Lanark. 


Club meetings are held in Club Rooms, 36 Nicholson Street, at 8 p.m. 

The past session was very successful, and the syllabus was very satisfac- 
tory. Lectures were delivered by the Rev. J. M'Kechnie and Mr V^ictor 
Meyer. Smoking concerts were held on St. Andrew's Night, and at the 
quarterly and the annual meetings. The ladies' nights were most enjoyable, 
and the concerts, by parties introduced by Mr and Mrs Paterson Cross and by 
Mr Ernest Brown, were very well attended. A deputation visited the Rose- 
bery Burns Club, Glasgow, and were most hospitably entertained. The 107th 
annual celebration was held in the Town Hall Saloon. Sir Donald MacalLster, 
Principal of Glasgow University, proposed the "Immortal Memory" in a 
memorable speech. The annual pilgrimage of members and lady friends took 
place in September, when a pleasant day was spent at Peebles, the weather 
being all that could be desired. 

On the 25th January the " Immortal Memory " will be proposed I)y the 
Hon. President, Sir Hugh Shaw Stewart, Bart, of Ardgowan and Blackball. 

SYLLABUS, 1909-1910. 


Oct. 28. Annual Meeting. Election of Office-bearers, &c. 

Nov. 19. Ladies' Night. Concert Party — Introduced by Mr J. G. M'Kail. 

,, 30. St. Andrew's Night. Visit from Rosebery Burns Club, Glasgow. 

Dec. 8. Lecture, " Paradise Lost "—Miss M. Macdonald, L.L.A. 


Jan. 6. Lecture, " Art and its Limitations " — Mr A. S. Mories. 

,. 25. loSth Annual Celebration. 

Feb. 18. Ladies" Night. Concert Party — Introduced by Mr Ernest C. Brown. 

Mar. 17. Lecture, " Hamlet " — Mr J. Eraser Paton. 

April 29. Quarterly Meeting. 


Club Meetings are held in Club Rooms, 93 Douglas Street, Glasgow. 

The Club continues to make steady progress, and has amply fulfilled the 
purpose for which it was originated five years ago, and although we have been 
passing through a period of industrial depression during the last year or so the 
membership is well maintained. 

The Directors, however, feel that there is abundance of accommodation in 
the Club premises for at least another hundred members without any incon- 
venience to the present members, and they extend a hearty invitation to all 
eligible Burnsians to apply to the Secretary (Jos. Martin, 163 West George 
Street, Glasgow), who will furnish them with Application Eorms and all other 


The followins:^ is the Syllabus for tiie current session : — 
Oct. 14. Opening Supper. 

,, 28. Lecture by Rev. James Forrest, M.A. Subject : " The Letters of 
Robert Burns." 
Nov. 25. St. Andrew's Day Supper. 
Dec. 16. Smoking Concert, arranged by Mr Forrest. 

Jan. 13. Smoking Concert, arranged by Mr Bishop. 

,, 25. Informal Gathering of Members and Friends, up. m. 
„ 27. Lecture by W. Graham Moffat, Esq. Subject : " The Drama." 
Feb. 10. Smoking Concert, arranged by Mr G. Fisher. 

,, 24. Lecture by Rev. David Graham, St. Gilbert's. Subject : " Oscar 
Mar. 10. Smoking Concert, arranged by Mr I/at. 
Each Meeting will begin at 8.30 p.m. prompt. 

T\vi-:i,KTH Annual Report — Ai-kil, 1909. 
The Annual Meeting of last year was a large gathering. The members 
had by vote determined to remove to the Grand Hotel, and the necessary 
instructions were given to the Committee to carry this into operation. The 
various reports submitted were very encouraging. A notice of motion was 
formulated for discussion at the Annual Meeting of the Federation in Septem- 
ber, the desire being to adjust power at the annual gathering, each Society 
to have proper and accredited returns showing membership and voting 



The Anniversary Dinner of 1909 was a unique gathering so far as our 
Club was concerned. Hitherto the door has been closed to our lady friends, 
but this time, after careful and due consideration, it was decided to remove 
this barrier and admit our " fair sex," who claim to be as great admirers of the 
Poet and his works as those of the sterner sex. 

The guest of the evening was Professor James Stuart, M.P. for Sunder- 
land, who gave a very fine appreciation of the Poet and his songs, interspersed 
with many reminiscent anecdotes of Scottish life and character. 

Our esteemed Hon. President, Alderman W. Burns, J. P., occupied the 
chair and directed the proceedings. 



During the year we gave an extra Concert, and for trhis purpose engaged 
the famous Glasgow Select Choir. This Concert was given on Thursday, 
October 22nd, 1908. 

The Annual Scottish Concert was held in the \'ictoria Hall on Tuesday, 
February 2nd, 1909, and was a very successful gathering. The company of 
artistes gave a delightful rendering of many of our " Auld Scots Sangs," and 
our Hon. Pipers, Murray and Stark, gave selections on the bagpipes during 
the concert. 


The number of readers has been well maintained, yet one could wish for 
an improvement in this respect. The work, in addition to forming a complete 
and correct Directory of all Federated Burns Clubs and Societies, contains 
many valuable articles well worth the perusal of every member of the Club. 

The enthusiasm and energy infused into this work by the Editor deserves 
our best appreciation and thanks. 


The Committee have had eleven meetings during the year, and the 
attendance was as follows :— Or Waferston, II ; Mr M. MacLennan, 9 ; Mr W. 
H. Turner, 4 ; Mr J- F. Crooks, 9 ; Mr W. P. Eastwood, lo ; Mr J. Donald, 
10; Mr M. Neilson, 10; Mr G. Mackay, 10; Mr A. W. Sample, 7 ; Mr D. 
Condie. 6. 

We started the year with si.xty-one members. During the year seven new 
members have joined, four have resigned, one has passed over to the "great 
majority," while three have been struck oft, leaving our present membership 
at sixty. 

Oct. 7. President's Address— Dr J. Waterston, J. P. 
,, 21 Musical Evening — Members. 
,, 22. Glasgow Select Choir (Victoria Hall). 
Nov. 4. " Gunpowder Plot" — Mr W. A. Culshaw. 

,, 18. " Edinburgh and Sir Walter Scott " — Mr G. Mackay. 
Dec. 2. " Life and Songs of Burns" — Mr A. H. Brock, Durham. Ladies' 
,, 16. Religious Teaching of Robert Burns " — Mr A. W. Semple. 
Jan. 6. Musical Evening— Members. 

,, 20. " Half-an-hour wi' Burns" — Mr D. Bain, Gateshead. 
,, 25. Anniversary Dinner — ^Prof. Jas. Stewart, M.P. 


Feb. 2. Scottish Concert (Victoria Hall). 

,, 3. Musical Evening — Members. 

,, 16. " Some American Peculiarities " — Mr II. MacColl. 
Mar. 3. " Famous Regiment?"— Mr M. MacLennan. 

,, 16. Musical Fvening — Members. 
April 7. Business Meeting. 
May 5. Annual Meeting : Flection of Officers. 
Sept. I. Business Meeting. 

We have from lime to time added to our Library some very interesting 
works, and our Librarian, Mr Geo. Mackay, is gathering quite an interesting 
collection. We have to acknowledge with grateful thanks a copy o{ James 
Thomson, his Life and Correspondence, presented by Mr W. H. Turner, also 
a copy of the third edition Si. Mary's, of Neivbattle, presented by the author, 
Rev. J. C. Carrick, B.D., Newbaitle Parish Church, Midlothian. 


We have to record the loss by death of one of our faithful members, Mr 
Alexander Cruickshanks, which took place on February i6th, 1909. The late 
Mr Cruickshanks had been connected with the Club since its inception, was a 
most enthusiastic member, and one who was always willing to give his services 
freely in connection with the Annual Concerts, lie was in his accustomed 
place at the Concert lield on February and, and his death came as a shock. 
The sympathy of the members was conveyed to his widow, and in addition to 
a wreath being sent, a deputation attended to pay the last tribute of respect to 
one who had been a faithful member. 


The Annual Meeting of the Federation was held in St. Andrews, on 
Saturday, September 5th, 1908, when Messrs Mackay, MacLennan, and 
Eastwood attended as the representatives of this Club. Mr D. Condie was 
spending a holiday in the district at the time, and also attended on behalf of 
the Club. 

In conclusion, let me say that in some respects the past year may have 
been a disappointing one, but we have still maintained our position in spite of 
the adverse conditions. Let me in a word thank the members for their kind- 
ness and consideration of my eflbrls. To all who have assisted us we tender 
our thanks, and now as we start on the brighter outlook of another year, let 
each member do a little to help forward the work and so make our Burns 
Club an influence for good in this town of Sunderland. 

M. Neilson, Secy. 


The Annual Meeting was held in the Trades' House Restaurant, on 26th 
•October — Rev. James Forrest, M.A., presiding. 
The annual report was as follows : — 

The Club is now in its twenty-ninth year, and is the third oldest clulj in 
■Glasgow, and the oldest federated club in the city. At the time of the last 
Annual Meeting, an article dealing with its 
history was printed in the Ktitherglen Kcfonncr. 
The membership now stands at 72, a consider- 
at)le number of members having been deleted 
during llie year at the revision of the roll. Nine 
members are in arrears of subscription. 

The Club has in the last twelve months had 
four Business Meetings, while the Committee has 
met on fifteen occasions. A third minute book 
has now been started. No. 2 lasted from 28th 
November, 1884, to i2lh June, 1909. Any 
member who has the first minute book is asked 
10 be good enough to return it to the Secretary. 
The year began with a deficit of £^ los gd. This has been wiped out 
and all accounts have been paid. There is a debit balance which will be 
wiped ofi'"as soon as the first subscriptions are collected, and this result is con- 
sidered very satisfactory. Great vigour has marked the carrying on of the 
Club's operations, and the meetings have been largely attended. The Annual 
Dinner was a great success. Two excellent lectures were given by the Revs. 
James Forrest and David Graham, and the musical evenings were good. A 
largely attended Tattie and Herrin' Supper was held in the spring, and on 
I2ih June the annual pic-nic was revived with gratifying success. 

The attendance and interest of the members have both increased, and an 
effort was successfully made to reduce expenditure. This effort will be main- 
tained, and next year the Club ought to be in the best postion which it has 
occupied for many years. The members were circularised as to the work of 
the Club on several occasions with good results. The Club was represented 
at the Burns Federation at Dunfermline, on 4th September, by Mr Thomson ; 
the Burns Club Association and the M'Lennan BowHng Competition by 
Messrs Warden, Thomson, Geo. Forrest, Pearson, White, Crawford, 
M'Kenzie, and Burns ; and by Mr Carmichael at the meeting of the Cup 
•Committee, when he was elected a Director. The Burns Chronicle was again 
supported, and the Club did all in its power to stimulate interest in the Ter- 
Jubilee of Robert Burns. The members have undertaken to subscribe ^20 to 
the Scottish Chair, and £\ i/- is already in hand. Among the suggestions of 


the year were (i) that the subscription be doubled, and (2) that life member- 
ship be introduced. The Committee deeply regret to report that the Club 
has lost by death two most valuable members — Past President Crawford and 
Mr John Laurance, chemist ; a former President, Mr George Chalt, also died 
during the year. The following changes were made during the year in the 
Directorate — Messrs James Ballantine and Edward Wilson were elected to fill 
the places of Mr Crawford (deceased) and Mr Baird (deleted). 

The attendances at Committee Meetings were : — Hunter, 15 ; Forrest, 14 ; 
Thomson, 14: Carmichael, 13; Warden, 11 ; A. M'Kenzie, 10; Smith, 7 ; 
Threshie, 6 ; Fisher, 7 ; Watson, 4 ; Ritchie, 3 ; Renfrew, i. Two elected 
during year— Ballantine, 5 ; Wilson, 3. It is hoped that the coming session 
will be a most successful one. Secretary and Treasurer, J. Jeffrey Hunter, 
writer, 109 Bath Street, Clasgow. 


The Annual General Meeting was held on 2nd September, 1909, in the 
National Burns Club, Glasgow — Rev. James Forrest, M.A., presiding. 
Twenty-six delegates were present, including representatives from Moorpark, 
Renfrew, Baillieston Caledonia, Old Kilpatrick, Carlton, Rutherglen 
Cronies, Nitshill, Scottish, Albany, Tam o' Shanter, Clydebank, Barns o' 
Clyde, the National, Carrick, and Rosebery. 

The Secretary read the business report for the year as follows : — Since 
the Annual Meeting, on 3rd September last, the Association has not met, but 
the Committee has met nine times and a sub-committee twice. During the 
year seven Clubs have joined, bringing the total number up to thirty-one. 
During the year assistance has been given to a large number of Clubs in con- 
nection with the supplying of essayists and speakers. Judges have also been 
sent to various school competitions, and in connection with these several 
expressions of opinion have been given that the subject of children's competi- 
tions should this year be gone into more systematically. It was agreed that 
Messrs Forrest and Hunter represent the Association at the Dunfermline 
meeting. During the year considerable dissatisfaction has been experienced 
in Burns circles owing to the large sum collected for the Auld Brig o' Ayr, 
viz., jCio,^oo, having proved inadequate ; and this Committee protested 
against the extravagance shewn. The Committee were early in communica- 
tion with the Burns Federation regarding the publication of the Burns 
Chronicle, and a deputation attended the Special Meeting at Kilmarnock ia 


connection therewith. The Chronicle continues to worthily represent the 
liurns cuh. With regard to the Scottish Chair, the Committee have done 
everything in their power to keep the matter before the Clubs, and on 14th 
November last issued a circular to all Clubs. A considerable number of them 
took collections at the Annual Dinner or alternately issued subscription sheets. 
The work has been going on slowly but satisfactorily, considering the recent 
extreme depression in trade. The Committee are happy to report that they 
successfully induced Mr Martin Haddow to ask the Glasgow School Board 
(then the only dissentient educational body in the country) to rescind its 
previous motion in opposition to the Chair. Mr Haddow kindly moved his 
motion as soon as the six months necessary under the Board's standing orders 
had expired, and was successful in carrying it by a satisfactory majority. In 
return for this the Committee made various efforts at the recent School Board 
election for the return of Mr Haddow, Dr Dyer, and one or two others who 
had interested themselves in the proposed Chair. The matter of the Chair 
will be again brought before the Clubs in anticipation of next year's dinners. 
The outstanding event of the Burns year was, of course, the celebration of the 
Ter-Jubilee of the Poet. In connection with this, great efforts were put forth 
by the Committee. A Scottish week was arranged in several of the theatres, 
and thanks are dae to the managers for their hearty co-operation. Other 
entertainers also assisted, while the Annual Dinners of the Clubs were cele- 
brated with increased enthusiasm, and in almost every case increased 
attendance. The Association also arranged for the decorating of various 
Burns Statues, and in cooperation with the Rosebery Burns Club decorated 
the Glasgow Statue. The Committee, a few months ago, were approached by 
the Executive Committee of the proposed Historical Exhibition, which is to 
be held in Kelvingrove Park in the summer of 1911, and several of them have 
been added to the Executive Committee of the proposed Exhibition. Dr 
Wallace's Committee, in charge of the Scottish Chair, some months ago 
appointed Provost Wilson and Mr Jeffrey Hunter to make the preliminary 
arrangements for a theatrical matin6e in aid of the Scottish Chair, and these 
gentlemen acted as representing that body and this Association. The perform- 
ance took place in the Empire Theatre, Glasgow, on 30th October. It was 
agreed to type a synopsis of the report and send it to all the delegates. 

Office-bearers were appointed as follows : — Rev. James Forrest was re- 
elected President on the motion of Mr Ballantine. Messrs Ballantine and 
PoUok were re-elected Vice-Presidents on the motion of the Chairman. The 
following twelve gentlemen were elected to form the Committee : A. C. 
Alston, Rutherglen Cronies ; John Burness, Nitshill : P. M'A. Carrick, 
CI irinda ; John Carmichael, National ; J. S. Carmichael, Albany ; Archibald 
Clark, Hamilton Mossgiel ; Alexander Mackenzie, Tam o' Shanter ; John 
Neilson, Thornliebank ; Thomas Struthers, Station House, Old Kilpatrick ; 


Laurence Watt, 35 Taylor Street, Clydehank ; Jolin Wilson, Scottish ; and 
James Tudliope, Carlton. 

( )n the motion of the Chairman, congralulalions were given to Mr 
M 'Naught, Kilmaurs, on the successful issue of the fac-similc of the First 
Kilmarnock Edition. 


During the year the management has lieen on the lines followed since the 
inception of the Club. 

The Directors' Meetings held numbered 8, and there have been 
5 Monthly .Meetings of members, including the Annual Business Meeting. 

The membership has been maintained throughout the year at the 
restricted number, viz., 150. 

The resignations numbered 3 ; two of these were owing to residence out 
of Glasgow, and one owing to ill-health. 

The death.s of members numbered 3— being the Hon. President, Mr 
Goodall ; the late Secretary, Mr Drennan ; and Mr Brotchie, a well-know n 
member of the Club. 

During the year Papers were given by tiie late Hon. President (ioodall. 
County Councillor A. M'Callum, Past Presidents J. Wilson Bain and 
Macwhannell, and Mr Walter Weir. 

The Anniversary Dinner of the Club was held in the Grand Hotel, and a 
very interesting address was given by Dr Kerr of Allan Glen School. 

Under the auspices of the Club a Singing and Reciting Competition was 
held on 15th January last, in Provanside Higher Grade School, the pri/.es 
given being four medals and twelve volumes. The successful competitors for 
the medals were Maggie Pirie and Jenny M'Lcan for reciting, and Flora Rollo 
and William Brodie for singing. 

I am glad to report that the Club is in a successful and flourishing condi- 
tion, and, as the syllabus shows, some good nights are in store for the A. B. C. 
during the ensuing session. 

The first meeting of the present session was held on 6th October, when 
an interesting paper was given by the President, the suijject being "The Life 
of Burns." It was gratifying to the members to have with them their Honorary 
President, Professor Glaister, who, notwithstanding it was the season of the 
University examinations, found time to pass an hour or so with us. At that 
meeting all the Past Presidents of the Club since its inception were present. 


Oct. 6. Opening Address— President, John A. Headrick. 
Nov. 3. Smoking Concert. 
Dec. I. "The Biographers of Burns^,\llan Cunningham" — ^John Mac- 

whannell, Esq. 

Jan. 12. " Burns and M-^dern Humanism " — Rev. James Forrest, MA. 

,, 25. " Immortal Memory " — George Eyre-Todd, Esq. 
Feb. 2. "William Shakespeare" — Andrew Black, Esq., R.S.W. 
Mar. 2. "Allan Ramsay" — Ex-President James Taylor. 


Oct. 19. Tattie and Herrin' Supper. 
Nov. 4. Open Meeting. 

Dec. 7. *Address by T. L. Anderson, Esq. Subject—" The Social Condi- 
tion of the People in the Time of Burns." 
Jan. 4. Open Meeting. 

,, 25. * Annual Dinner. Rev. Andrew R. Cowie will propose " The 
Immortal Memory." 
Feb. S. Open Meeting. 

,, 22. *Address by William Browning, Esq. Subject— " The Dominie of 
the 1 8th Century." 
Mar. 8. Annual General Meeting. 
April 5. Open Meeting, 

MeetiiiRS marked * will be held in Bank Restaurant, Queen Street. 


SYLLABUBS- 1909-10. 
Sept. 16. "Irish Wit and Scotch Humour" (with Songs) — Walter Weir, 

Esq., Glasgow. 
Oct. 21. "The Forth and Clyde Wall of the Emperor Antoninus"— 

Archibald Macdonald, Esq., Public Librarian, Dumbarton. 
Nov. 18. "Claverhouse and the Covenanters"— J. Jeffrey Hunter, Esq., 


Feb. lo. 

A R:uiil>le ihrough Italy" (illustrated by lOO Lantern Slides)— 
Rev. E. Sherwood Gunson, M.A. , Ranishorn Parish Church, 

A Scotsman seen through Green, Red, Blue, and True Spectacles 
— Rev. J. il. Dickie, M.A., New Kilpatrick Rarisli Church. 
Mar. lo. "The Letters of Robert Burns" — Rev, Robert Munro, B.D., U.F. 
Church, Old Kilpatrick. 
The Anniversary of the Bard will be celebrated in ('lavinlinin Public 
School, when the " Immoruil Memory" will be proposed by a well-kiiDwn 


InstiUited iSg4. Federated 18^4. 

Oct. 5. Business Meeting. 

Nov. 2. Harmony. Contributor, Mr Charles W. C. M'Farlane. 
Dec. 7. Joint Meeting with Rosebery Burns Club. Lecturer, I'rincipal 
A. M. Williams, M.A. 
Jan. II. Harmony. Contributor, Mr David Giln.our. 

,, 25. Anniversary Dinner. 
Feb. I. Joint Meeting with Rosebery Burns Club. Lecture, "The Merry 

Muses"— D. M 'Naught, Esq., J. P. 
Mar. I. Smoking Concert. 

Apr. 5. Lecture, " Burns and the De'il " — John Russell, Esq. 
May — Summer r)uting. 



Instituted 1S12. Federated iSgb. 

We have received no official report from Dunfermline, but from the 
account of ihe Federation Meeting it will be seen that it is in a most 
flourishing condition, under the fostering c:iie of its efficient and enthusiastic 
Chairman and Secretary. 


Mr J. C. Cra 



The 43rd Annual Dinner, to commemorate the 150th anniversary of 
Burns's birth, was held in the Hotel St. George, and was very successful. 
There was an attendance of over 90, under the chairmanship of Dr J. Middle- 
mass Hunt. The toast of" The Memory of Burns"' was ably given by the 
Hon. Secretary, Major R. S. Archer, V. D. Other speakers included the 
Rev. James Hamilton, M.A., Rev. J. Aitken Clark, Mr J. H. M'Gaul, J.P., 
Mayor of Birkenhead, Mr Alex. Grt)ss;irt, Captain James Hunter, R.A., and 
Colonel Richard Bulman, V. D. There was also an excellent musical 

For the winter session 1909-10 a series of lectures, &c., has been 
arranged in conjunction with the Literary and Social Society of St. Andrews 
Church of Scotland, Rodney Street, Liverpool, viz.: — "Some Scottish 
Songsters before and after Burns," by Mr H. S. Pearson, with musical 
illustrations ; " Robert Buchanan," by Mr Alex. Grossart ; " Edinburgh and 
its Monuments," by Major R. S. Archer, V. D., with lantern illustrations ; 
and "The Scottish Border,"' by the Rev. James Hamilton, M.A., with 
lantern illustrations. 


Instituted igoS. 

This Club was instituted in 1908, and owes its existence chiefly to the 
energy and enthusiasm of Councillor Peter Palon, who is not only a keen 
Burnsian but takes an active interest in everything that has for its object the 
good of the community. Last season a competiti(;n was held in Moorpark 
Public School for the best rendering of Burns poems, and through the interest 
taken by Mr Archibald Walker, headmaster, and Mr A. S. Binnie, his able 
assistant, proved very successful. Two gold medals were presented for com- 
petition, one by Bailie Milliken, Hon. President, and one by John M'Gregor, 
Esq., Hon. Vice-President, while several volumes of Burns's Works were gifted 
by other members of the Club. 

The Annual Anniversary Dinner was held in Mrs Kirk's Hall, Moorpark, 
on 2ist January, when Mr A. S. Binnie, A.E.I.S., the second headmaster of 
Moorpark Public School — now headmaster of ^'oker Public School — proposed 
the " Immortal Memory." A concert was held on 17th March, at which 
Miss Jeanie Neil ami Master Tom M'Clair, winners of the gold medals, took 
part, and recited their pieces before a large audience. 

Regarding the present session, a lecture by the Kev. James Forresi, M.A., 
Glasgow, on " Burns as a Poet of Nature and Life," illustrated by songs, was 


given in Renfrew Town Hall on 15th October. The lecture turned out most 
successful, and was greatly enjoyed by a large audience. 

Another school competition will be held in the beginning of the year, for 
which Councillor D. Ferguson, J. P., President, and Councillor P. Paton, ex- 
President, have very kindly offered medals — one of the medals will be given 
for elocution, and the other for singing. Both medals last year were given for 
the former, but the committee have thought it advisable to make a change in 
order to make the competition more comprehensive and enticing. 

A concert will be held some time in March, when the medals and other 
prizes will be awarded, and this will complete the work for the year. 



Oct. 28. Hallowe'en Supper— Mr Hugh M'Coll. 

Nov. 18. Lecture, " The Place of Romance in History '" —Mr [as. Ballantyne. 
Dec. 23. Christmas P'eslival and Musical Evening — Mr Hugh M'Coll. 

Jan. 21. Anniversary Dinner, Sloan's Cafe, Argyle Arcade — Rev. James 

Forrest, M.A. 
Feb. 17. Lecture, " Burns and the Border " — Mr .\ndrew M'Callum. 
Mar. 24. Musical Evening— Mr Arch. Ferguson. 

April 21. Tattie-an'-Herrin' Supper and Musical Evening— Mr Hugh M'Coll. 
May — Annual Excursion. 


Instituted iSgg. 
SYLLABUS- Session 1909-10. 

Oct. II. " Burns as a Singer of Nature and Life" — Rev. Jas. forrest, M.A. 
Nov. 8. " Burns : His Surroundings and Family "- J. Leiper Gemmill, Esq, 

,, 22. Ladies' Night. Tea, &c. Harmony. 
Dec. 13. " The Holy Fair " — Rev. David Graham. 

Jan. 10. " Humours of Shakespeare "— Leander M. Fyfe, Esq. 

,, 25. Burns Anniversary. 
Feb. 14. Ladies' Night. Progressive Whist, Music, Dancing. 
Mar. 14. Annual Business Meeting. 



/•'i'lnid'rd igoi. 



les B, Rkxw icK, 

The Society seeks hy means of lectures, debates, concerts, children's 
cumpetitions, &c., to encourage familiarily with the Works of our National 
Bard, and to promote the study of social, scientific, and literary subjects 
generally. The Society meets fortnightly from September till March. The 
Anniversary of the Poet's birth is celebrated by a festival, and there is an 
annual excursion in the summer time to some place associated with his life and 
w Tilings. The Society contributed £2 8s towards the fund for the preserva- 
tion of the Auld Brig o' Ayr, and /6 towards the fund for the establishment 
of a Chair of Scottish History and Literature in the University of (Glasgow. 

SYLLABUS— Session 1909-10. 


Sept. 3. Lecture, " A Tour in the Highlands of Scotland " (illustrated) —Mr 
William M'Master. 
,, 21. Lecture, "The Inevitaljility of Socialism " — Mr John M'Lean, M.A. 
Oct. 5. I.>ebate, "Should the State seek to eliminate the Drink or the 
Drunkard ?" — Drink, Mr George Monaghan ; Drunkard, Mr 
John Burness. 
,, 19. Lecture, " Marine Life in the Kirth of Clyde" (illustrated) — Rev. 
Robert Barr. M.A. 
Nov. 2. Lecture, " Should the British Kmpire Federate .'"—Mr William E. 
,, 16. Debate, "Is the intellect of man superior to that of woman ?" — 

Aff., .Mr James Tyre ; Neg., Mr William Ferguson. 
,, 30. Lecture, " A Tour through Greece and Palestine" (illustrated)— Mr 
Thomas Robinson, J. P. 













,, 22. 

Mar. 8, 

,, 22. 
,, 22. 

Lecture, " Tobacco "—Mr Robert Jamieson, jun. 
Debate, " Is our system of State Education beneficial to the nation ?" 
— Aff., Mr George Omand ; Neg., Mr John Burness. 

Lecture, " Mining" — Mr William Shaw. 

Burns Night, " The Immortal Memory "—Rev. Thos. Cook, M.A. 

Debate, "Are Trades Unions on the whole beneficial or mischievous ?" 

Bene., Mr William Reid ; Mis., Mr James Rankin. 
Debate, " Does Scotland owe most to Scott or Burns?" — Scott, Mr 

James M. M'Cubbin ; Burns, Mr James B. Renwick. 
Musical Evening — Mr Archibald Dickson. 

Lecture, Subject will be duly announced— ^W^oX^n Paterson, M.A. 
Business Meeting. 


We regret to be informed that the Airdrie Club is falling back somewhat, 
but we have no doubt the energy and enthusiasm of Mr Cochrane, the present 
President, and Major Motherwell, past President, will soon restore it to its 
position as one of ihe leading clubs in Lanarkshire. 


SVI.L \UUS-Skssion 1909 io. 

Kov. 4. I're.sitlem's Address. 

,, II. Lecture — Mr J. B. Lawson. 

,, 25. *Lecture — Rjv. James Forrest, M.A. 
Dec. 16. Musical Evenin|; — Mr John Douglas. 

1 910. 
Jan. 6. *Burns School Conipetiiion. 

,, 25. *Anniversary of the Bard — " The Immortal Memory," by Rev. 
Nicholson Thomson. 
Feb. 3. ^Lecture— Rev. D. D. R-es. 

,, 17. Members' Night. 
Mar. I. *Dramatic Recital. 

,, 17. Social Meeting. 

,, 31. Business Meeting. 

Jleetinns witli (he exception of those marla-d • are held in Upper Assem'jly Rooms. 



Extracts from Greenock Burns Club Mimite Book. 

August, 1S04. 

At a meeting of this Club held on above date, at which no fewer than 51 
members and friends were present, Mr Stewart read a discourse on the " Life 
and Poetry of Robert Fergusson, of Edinburgh," but before proceeding, inti- 
mated that news had just reached town that Admiral Duncan, the hero of 
Camperdown, had breathed his last at Kelso. 

The company received this information with the utmost grief, and one of 
the members present, who had served under this distinguished Commander, 
gave expression to the opinion that however brilliant had been his services in 
the Camperdown engagement, they were surpassed by his services to his 
country during that shameful episode in the history of the British navy— the 
mutiny of the Nore. 

Mr Stewart gave a full and interesting account of the life and private 
character of Robert Fergusson, with an analysis of his poems, and a comparison 
of his style and that of Robert Burns, who, he pointed out, had on many 
instances taken Fergusson as his model, giving as his authority the notes of 
Gilbert Burns. The plan of "The Cottar's Saturday Night" being taken 
from Fergusson's " Farmer's Ingle ;" "The Holy Fair " from the " Hallow 
Fair;"" "The Elegy on the Death of Maillie "" from "The Elegy on the 
Death of David Gregory;" "The Epistles"" decidedly on the lines of 
Fergusson ; "The Lea Rig"' resembling in a wonderful degree " My only Jo 
and Dearie, O ;" "Scotch Drink" from Fergusson's " Caller Water ;" " Ode to 
Disappointment " from " Disapp(.)intment, an Ode ; "' on the x\uthor's 
intention of going to sea, and "A Scotch Bard" going to the West Indies; 
"The Election" and " Leith Races" furnished Burns with the plan of 
"Hallowe'en"" and "The Ordination;" his " Twa Dogs" and "Brigs of 
Ayr" resembling Fergusson's "Ghosts"' (?) and "Plain Stanes and Causey 

Mr Stewart claimed for Robert Fergusson the honour of being the 
inspirer and guide of Robert Burns, The discourse was received with much 
approbation, and a lengthy discussion upon the merits of the two poets 
followed, during which a remark by a member that Robert Burns had copied 
Fergusson's intemperate habits as well as his poems caused considerable 


commotion. Mr Wiis^lil stated lliat he had known Robert Hums intimately 
for three years previous to his joining, and having been associated with liim in 
his profession, and he could, from his personal knowled^^e, deny most 
emphatically that Robert Burns was a man of intemperate or dissolute 

Captain Hrown bore out what Mr Wright said, adding that had tlie Poet 
been the dissolute person his biographer made him out he would neither have 
had the time, inclination, nor ability to produce such inspired poetry, &c. 

(Signed) Duncan Shaw. 

The usual summer meeting of this Club was lield on the evening of 
Friday, 2isi July, 1809, in the Large Room of Mrs Park's Inns, when a very 
respectable number of the members were present. 

The esteemed I'reses of the Club, Mr Duncan Ferguson, conducted the 
business in his usual able manner, and called on the Secretary to report to the 
meeting the progress that had been made in the matter of the proposal at the 
January meeting anent the Club giving prizes for the best knowledge of the 
poems of Burns and other of our Scottish Poets. 

It was reported that a small committee had been formed, viz. :— The 
Preses, Secretary, and Messrs T. Wilson and Wm. Scott, to consider the 
whole matter, and they now recommended that the Club should subscribe for 
prizes to be given to school children annually, and for this year that six poems 
should be taken fur study, three of these to be from the works of Robert 
Fergusson, and the other three from Robert Hurns's poems. Already a modest 
sum of money had been collected for the first prizes, and they were in a 
position to inform llie Club that already ther.e were about 37 young persons 
eligible for the competition, these being scholars in the various seminaries of 
the town who had taken up the works in question as a special study. 

The thanks of the Club was given to the committee for the practical way 
they had given effect to the motion of Mr Andrew M'Neil, and it was referred 
to the same parties to make all the arrangements for the awarding and pre- 
sentation of the prizes at as early a date as would be suitable before harvest- 

The thanks of the C'lub were also awarded to a member — Mr Scott, 
bookseller, William Street-for the interest he is taking in this matter, as well 
as for his patriotisin in spending so much of his time in preparing for publica- 
tion, a complete and improved edition of Robert Fergusson's Poems, and which 
has been undertaken without the prospect or expectation of realising any 
monetary reward in return. 

Mr J. Laird gave, in a lengthy address, " The Memory of Robert Burns," 
and the effort the speaker made to convey to the minds of his hearers a 
correct impression of the importance of the personality of the Poet was 


crowned with perfect success. Some of those present, he proceeded to say, 
had the advantage of knowing Burns in the flesh, while he had to form his 
opinion of the man through his poems and from information of a personal 
kind combined. 

Mr T. Wilson supplemented the speaker's remarks by testifying from his 
own personal knowledge of Robert Burns that the remarks as to the supposed 
intemperance of the Poet made by certain ignorant or base persons were 
wholly untrue. Mr Wilson stated that he knew Burns from the first day he 
landed in Dumfries till he was carried to his last resting-place, and on no 
occasion had he ever known of him being the worse for imbibing of intoxicat- 
ing liquors, and he considered him very much above the average for sobriety 
in the service to which he latterly belonged, adding in language more forcible 
than polite " that there never was a skittrin' cow in the lane but wanted a 

He went on to treat of the Poet's life as a peasant, submitting that in that 
fact lay the great blessing of such a gift to the peasantry of Scotland, &c. 

(Signed) James Welsh. 

Extracted nth June, iQog, by 

Robert Smith, Secy. 


We have testimony to a prolonged litigation between William Burnes, 
of Lochlea, and his landlord, although there is no allusion to the tenant's 
son. Upon this litigation some interesting yet perplexing light is thrown by 
copies of certain documents which were lent to and shown in the Burns 
Exhibition by Mrs J. G. Burns of Kilmaroon, the representative of Gilbert 
Burns's family. The first is described as " Service copy petition by David 
M'Clure, merchant, Ayr, against William Burns, tenant of Lochhill {sic), part 
of the Barony of Halfmark, Tarbolton, at the rent of £\T,o sterling yearly by 
set from the petitioner, alleging that William Burns owed him upwards of 
^^500, wherefore warrant of sequestration was asked for, and interim warrant 
granted on 17th May, 1783, the date of service."' 

"At Ayr, the seventeenth day of May, seventeen hundred and eighty- 
three years, anent the petition given in and presented to the Honble. the 
Sheriff- Deput of Ayr by David M'Clure, merchant in Ayr, Humbly sheweth 
that William Burns in Lochhill possessed that farm, part of the Barony of 
Halfmark, in the parish of Tarbolton, and had done so for five years preceding 
Martinmas last, at the rent of one hundred and thirty pounds sterling yearly 
by set from the petitioner, and was presently owing upwards of five hundred 



pounds sterling besides the current year's rent. That the said William Burns, 
having upon frivolous Pretences refused payment of the rent, his claims of 
Retention came at last to be submitted to arbiters and then laid before Mr 
Hamilton of Sundrum as oversman, to determine upon them, but as there was 
no written Tacks or minute of bar<;;aiii between the Petitioner and the said 
William Burns he was informed that lie was immediately to quit the possession, 
and was preparing himself accordingly by dispossessing of his slock and crops 
to disappoint the petitioner of his fund of payment, which oblidged him to 
make that application at present craving. It might therefore please his Lord- 
ship to order that petition to be served upon the said William Burns, and him 
to lodge his ansures thereto in a short space, and in the meantime to grant 
warrand for sequestrating the whole stock and crops in the barn and barnyard 
upon said lands, all to remain till jiayment was made of the bygone rent, at 
least till sufficient caution was found for what may be due, and lickways of 
the current year's rent, according to justice, as the said petition signed by the 
said David M'Clure, petitioner, bears, which petition having been upon the 
date hereof considered by William Wallace of Duchrae, Esq., advocate, 
Sheriff- Deput of Ayrshire, he ordeaned and hereby ordeans the before William 
Burns to be served with a full Copy of said Petition and of that Deliverance, 
and to lodge his ansures thereto in the Sheriff-Clerk's office at Ayr witliin four 
days after he shall be so served with Certification, and in the meantime granted 
and hereby grants warrend to officers to sequestrate and secure the stock 
and crop in the barn and barnyard for payment of the current year's rent when 
due or at least till sufficient caution is found therefor, and also the said Crop in 
the barn and barnyard for payment of the year's rent whereof it is the growth 
or that security be found therefore, as the said deliverance, signed by the said 
William Wallace, Esquar, advocate, Sheriff- Deput of Ayrshire, bears : Ex- 
tracted upon this and the two preceding pages by William Crooks, elk. subt. 

" Vou, the within-designed William Burns, are hereby served with a full 
copy of said petition, deliverance, and warrend of seeqwesteration, desires you 
for to lodge your ansures thereto in the Sheriff-Clerk's office at Ayr within four 
days next after the date hereof, with certs. This I do upon the seventeen day 
of May seventeen hundred and eighty three years, before witnesses. 

James Gordon." 
Then follows : — 

" Upon the seventeenth day of May, seventeen hundred and eighty-three 
years, I, James Gordon, officer past, by virtue of the Sherifif-Deput of Ayrshire, 
his deliverance and warrand of sequestration, wrote upon this and the iwo 
succeeding pages following upon the before-extracted Petition, and lawfully 
served the before-designed William Burns personally apprehended with a 
full double of the before petition, deliverance, and warrand of sequestration, 
with a short copy subjoined thereto subscribed by me, desiring and requiring 


■him to lodge his answers thereto in the Sheriff-Clerk's office at Ayr within 
four days next after the date hereof, and also the said officer, in virtue of the 
foresaid warrand of sequestration past to the grounds of the lands of Lochlie 
upon the said seventeenth day of May current and year foresaid, and then and 
there I lawfully sequestrated and secoured four horse, two mears, two ploughs 
and plough graith, one wheat stack, one half-stack of corn, and a little hay, 
all standing in the barnyard ; four stacks of bear in the barn, about 
three bolls of bear lying on the barn floor, two stacks of corn in the barn, 
two small bags of pease in the barn, thirteen cows, two caffs, one ewe, two 
lambs, 14 bundles of shafe lint, seven bundles of mill tow in the mill, five 
carts with graith belonging them lying in the shed, three cart wheels lying in 
the shed, two cart wheels standing in the closs with an iron axtree, two old 
ploughs, three long-bodied carts in the shed, two harrows on the land besides 
the house, a large parcell of wheat straw in thack shaves, a large parcell of 
bear straw in battles, all in the barn yard, and a large parcell of corn straw in 
battles in the shed, all to remain under sure sequestration for payment of the 
current year's rent when due, or at least till sufficient caution is found there- 
fore, before and in presence of these witnesses — Robert Uoak, servant to 
David M'Clure of Shauood, and John Lees, shoemaker in Tarboltoun." 

The "answers" of William Burns have not yet been recovered. Copies 
of the counter-answers of M'Clure have been : — 

" Replies from David M'Clure, Merchant in Air, to the Answers of IVilliani 
Burns, in Lochlie. 
"The petitioner denys there was any missive of Agreement respecting 
the set of the Lands of Lochlie to the respondent as he aledges. But he affirms 
that the rent of said Lands was set forth in the petition. Sometime ago the 
respondent made out an Account in his own hand-writing which he called an 
account of Charge and Discharge betwixt him and the petitioner, in which 
Account he himself states the rent in the same manner as set forth in the 
petition. This Account with other papers is lying before the arbiter, Mr 
Hamilton of Sundrum. The petitioner allous that the respondent has ploued 
and sowed part of the Lands, but whither so much as ought to have been done 
he cannot say ; but he submitted to your Lordship whither thirteen black cattle 
(which by the Execution of sequestration herewith produced your lordship will 
see is all the respondent has on the farm) be an adequate number for a farm of 
the extent and that pays the rent which the respondent's farm does. It will 
no doubt appear to your Lordship that there ought to have been at least 
double that Quantity, but few as they are, and notwithstanding your Lord- 
ship's sequestration, the petitioner is well informed that since your Lord- 
ship's warrant was execute the respondent has actually carried off and sold 
part of that number at a public market. 


" As the respondent acknowledges the possession it cannot be understood 
that he should possess these lands without paying rent, but he does not so 
much as pretend to say that he has any recepts or discharges to show that he 
has paid the rent up to any given period during his possession. Therefore his 
saying that the rents are paid up till Martinmas last is a mere allegation with- 
out the smallest foundation. It is therefore humbly hoped from these causes 
your Lordship will see no cause to alter or recall your warrant of sequestration 
as craved. 

(Signed) David M'Clurk." 

[There is much in these documents that requires supplementing and clear- 
ing up. But several things are tolerably clear. David M'Clure, merchant in 
Ayr, obtained a warrant for the sequestration of William Burnes on the 
ground that his tenant was owing arrears of rent to the amount of ;^500. 
William Burnes denied that he owed so much, and therefore asked the 
warrant for sequestration to be recalled. M'Clure in his final "replies" 
blames William Burnes for selling portions of his sequestrated black cattle in 
defiance of "his lordship's warrant." It is probable that Burns "held the 
pen " for his dying father in the fight with M'Clure, as M'ell as in writing to 
James Burness, and that he actually wrote the " answers " — perhaps with the 
help of his legal friends in Ayr — to which we have the laird's " replies." Can 
they not be recovered ? The conflict had not ended when William Burnes 
breathed his last on 13th P'ebruary, 1784, and so was saved the horrors of a jail 
by that "good angel, death."] 


At Sotheby's, London, on Thursday, the purchase was made by Mr 
Thomson, Hole i' the Wa' Inn, Dumfries, at the price of ;^5i, of a hitherto 
undiscovered Burns manuscript of the song " Here's to thy health, my bonnie 
lass," in which a footnote is added in the Poet's handwriting which definitely 
removes the hitherto generally accepted impression that the song is of his own 
composition. The song is written on both sides of a sheet of paper of foolscap 
size, and there is an explanatory comment by Burns at the beginning and 
another at the end of the verses. The former is as follows : " A song ; tune. 
Leader Haughs of Yarrow. This song may possibly be a contemptible per- 
formance in the scientific eyes of the literati, but to me it has great merit as 
the honest effusion of a poetic though rustic heart." That at the end runs : 
" The foregoing song is, as far as I can recollect, the composition cff an 
illiterate millwright, about thirty or forty years ago, somewhere in Ayrshire." 

That this was a song of Burns's own composition was the view taken by 


Professor Wilson and Mr Nimmo in their respective collections of the Poet's 
works. The former author, in a footnote to the song says : " This was a 
production of the Poet's, but later in life he revised it and sent it to Johnson's 
Museum. The writhings of his mind under the pressure of poverty and his 
suspicions of every one richer than himself display themselves very character- 
istically in this song." The only suspicion that has been cast upon the 
authenticity of the song is by Dr Wallace, who in his work, which was 
published in 1896, says : " Mrs Begg (who was a sister of the Poet) declared 
this song not to be Burns's, but to be one of those familiar ditties commonly 
sung at rural firesides before his efforts in that way were known. The internal 
evidence is all in favour of Burns's authorship." 

The manuscript now brought to light makes it quite clear that Burns was 
not the author of the song. It also shows a number of variations on the 
published version. The text of the manuscript is as follows : — 

" Fareweel, fareweel, my bony lass. 
Good-night and joy be wi' thee ; 
I'll be no more at your bow'r door, 
A welcome guest to see thee. 

Ye ken fu' well, I needna tell. 

My thoughts are a' about ye ; 
Though dinna think, my pretty pink, 

But I can live without ye. 

Ye're ay so free assuring me 

Ye have no mind to marry ; 
I'll be as free in telling thee, 

No time have I to tarry. 

I know your frien's use every means 

From marriage to delay thee. 
Thinking to advance to some higher chance, 

But Fortune may betray thee. 

I know they threaten my low estate. 

But that does never grieve me ; 
For I'm as free as any He, 

Small money will relieve me. 

I'll count my health my greatest vvealth 
While Heaven shall give enjoyment ; 
I'll bode no want, I'll fear no scant, 
So long's I get empk^yment. 

Your far-off fowls hae feathers fair. 

And ay until you try them ; 
Though they seem fair, still have a care. 

They'll prove as bad as I am. 


It is your beauty I admire, 

I value not your riches ; 
Your modestie engages me, 

Your sweetness me bewitches. 

Your modestie's dearer to me 

Than a' King Crassus" treasure ; 
An' the lad that loves his lassie well, 

He'll wait upon her leisure. 

But twelve at night when the moon'shines bright, 

My dear, IMl come and see ihee ; 
For the lad that loves his lassie weel, 

No travel makes him weary." 

The following is the first stanza of the published version, which indicates- 
the variation between it and the manuscript version : — 

•' Here's to thy health my bonie lass ! 

Guid night, and joy be wi' thee I 
I'll come nae mair to thy bower-door 

To tell thee that I lo'e thee, 
O, dinna think, my pretty pink. 

But I can live without thee ; 
I vow and swear I dinna care 

How lang ye look about ye. " 

The manuscript was the property of Miss Grant, I'itt^Street, Kensington. 
Bidding started at 42s, but quickly rose to £jO, and competition was entirely 
confined to Mr Sabin, London, and Mr Thomson. 

/^row the " Dumfries and Ga'/oway Standa7-d," July 24th, rgog. 


Identity oi' " AVkf. Johnie." 

Particulars are given by the Dumfries Courier in its issue of to-day of a 
notable Burns find which has been made in the library of the late Mr Samuel 
Adamson of Drumclyer. It is a copy of the Edinburgh Edition of 1787 with 
annotations in the Poet's handwriting, and originally belonged to Dr Robert 
Mundell, rector of Wallace Hall Academy, Closeburn. Apart from this 
volume there is no record of Burns's acquaintance with Dr Mundell, but that 
he did not know him is highly improbable, and it is worth noting that the 
name of Dr Mundell's father appears in the list of subscribers to the Kilmar- 
nock Edition. Many of the annotations merely supply omissions of names and 


stanzas which have since been restored, and are of no great intrinsic value. On 
the other hand, against "Winter: a Dirge" Burns has written — "Oldest 
composition in the book — done when the author was about seventeen "—a 
most remarkable note, which, if genuine, disposes of Chambers's date of 1781, 
based on the supposition that the poem was " experimental." " Wee Johnie," 
who is now shown to have been neither John Wilson the printer of the Kilmar- 
nock Edition nor any other John Wilson, but " the Rev. John Kennedy." 
The question therefore for future editors of Burns is — Who was the Rev. John 
Kennedy ? 

In connection with the find of an Edinburgh edition annotated by Burns, 
a correspondent suggests that "Weejohnie" was the Rev. John Kennedy, 
who was assistant to the Rev. George Reid in Ochiltree, was appointed to 
Terregles in 1781, and died in 1790. The Poet probably knew the Ochiltree 
assistant in the Mossgiel period, and in Dumfriesshire also. 

Glasgow Herald, 29th July, 1908. 


The information I have regarding the book is as follows :— The father of 
the parly who has handed it to me received it many years ago from a fellow- 
Sunday School teacher, a Miss Andrew, who died over eighty years of age. 
Miss Andrew had got it when she was a young girl from another old lady, a 
Miss Fisher. I understand that Mr Wilson Baird has been examining the 
stones in the Mauchline churchyard, and I am informed there is a headstone 
there bearing Holy Willie's father's name, and the dates on this stone would 
appear to indicate that the Bible dates refer to grandchildren. If the names 
of Holy WiUie's family could be procured, and these should correspond with 
the names on the book, it would be pretty fair proof that the book was his. 
The tombstone in Mauchline gives no information. 

Chas. L. K. Wri(;ht. 
Loanfoot Terrace, Kilmarnock. 


The following examination paper has been compiled for the use of minor 
Burns Clubs. It is hoped that members will be willing to test their knowledge 
of the works of the I'oet by answering the simple questions propounded. 

I. Who are referred to in the following lines : — ■ 

(1) " He's grown sae weel acquaint wi' Buchan." 

(2) " Wi' Allan or wi' Gilbertfiel'." 


(3) " Though by his banes wha in a tub, 

Matched Macedonian Sandy." 

(4) " Wi' funny, queer Sir John." 

(5) " The chief on Sark wlio glorious fell." 

(6) "The iiicikle Ur.'^a-Major." 

II. Translate into coherent English : — 

(i) " The laird was a widdiefu' hieerit knurl." 

(2) "Jenny's jimps and jirkinet." 

(3) "I'll sned besoms, thraw saugh woodies." 

(4) " She dights her grunzie wi' a hushion." 

(5) " Till spritty knowes wad rair't and risket 

An' .sly pet owrc' 

(6) " De'il mak' his king's-hood in a .spleuchan." 

III. From the poems may be discovered :— 

(i) What was Burns's favourite Psalm tune ? 

(2) What was a good price for a farm horse in Burns"s day ? 

(3) What did Burns consider a reasonable refreshment ? 

(4) When did old age begin in Burns's opinion ? 

(5) What did Burns con.sider the worst misfortunes that afflict 

humanity ? 

(6) What did Burns consider .\ good day's ploui^hing ? 

IV. (i) Quote any ^16/V^r r//V/z of Burns regarding — 

A college education, Scones, 

French cookery, Italian opera, 

The city gent, Edinburgh gentry. 

(2) Also his most serious utterances regarding — 
Religion, Socialism, 

Old age, Death. 

V. (i) Enumerate in their proper succession — 

The various degrees of intoxication mentioned in the poems. 
(2) Can you gather from the poems whether or not Burns was a 
smoker ? 

NT. Explain the following allusions : — 

(i) "On Fasten-e'en we had a rockin'." 

(2) " Thou stalk o' carl-hemp in man." 

(3) "A town of fame whose princely name." 

(4) " The More low was laid at the sound of the drum." 

(5) " The third of Libra's equal sway." 

(6) " The burden-bearing tribe." 


VII. On what occasion did — 

(1) Maggie stand right sair astonished ? 

(2) Leezie get afearfu' settlin' ? 

(3) Burns cheep like some bewildered chicken ? 

(4) Jeanie talk of rank and fashion ? 

(5) Charlie get the spring to pay ? 

VIII. Comment briefly upon the following references to Burns by three 

eminent poets, naming the authors if possible : — 
(i) "A question has long puzzled me — How strait-laced Scotland 
could clasp her national poet to her bosom without breaking her 
stays ?" 

(2) " Singly he faced the bigot brood, 

The meanly wise, the feebly good, 
lie pelted them with pearl, with mud ; 

He fought them well — 
But ah : the stupid million stood, 

And he- he fell !" 

(3) " Burns is a beast with splendid gleams." 

J. H. M. in Evening Times, Feb. 13th, 1908. 


It appears from a note in the Aberdeen /oiirnal, Wednesday, July 27, 1814, 
p. 4, col. 5. that the Bank of Scotland note, dated ]st March, 1780, which 
•contains the lines, " Wae worth thy power, thou cursed leaf !" &c., was in the 
possession of Mr James F. Gracie, banker, of Dumfries, at that period. The 
Journal mentions that the lines exhibit strong marks ni the Poet's vigorous 
pen, and are evidently an extempore effusion of his character feelings. They 
bear internal proof of their having been written at that interesting period of 
his life when he was on the point of leaving the country on account of the 
unfavourable manner in which his proposals for marrying " Bonnie Jean" (his 
future wife) were at first received by his friends. Letters by Burns addressed 
to James Gracie, banker, appear in GilfiUan's Burns, Vol. II., 238, 268. 

Where is the note now ? 

Robert Murdoch -I.awranx'e. 
71 Bon- Accord Street, Aberdeen. 


One of the most prominent autographs at Sotheby's one afternoon was a 
letter by Burns, addressed to Miss Miller of Dalswinton, on September 9, 
1793, enclosing the song of five stanzas " Fair Jenny," which begins, " Where 
are the joys I have met in the morning?" The letter runs as follows : — 


" Madam, — I have taken tlie lihciiy to make you the heroine of the 
song on the foregoing page. Being Utile in ilic secret of young ladies' 
loves and lovers — how should I, you know ? — I have formed in my fancy 
a little love story for you. The air, you know, is excellent, and the 
verses, I hope and think, are in my best manner. It goes into I'leyel's 
If I mistake not, Mr Thompson, of Dumfries, was among the bidders; but 
the letter and song fell at £^0 to Mr R'arriott. 

G/as!^07i< Heiald. 


'^ ' jt'C'Tt 

^4? *) 



The above is ■A.fac-simile of part of a page from the minute book of Lodge 
St. Mungo, Mauchline, kindly forwarded to us by Mr Taylor Gibb, of that 
town. The signatures of the contemporaries of Burns — Smith, Dr M'Kenzie, 
Richmond, and John Dove ("Johnie Pigeon") can easily be made out. — [En.] 


The following interesting paragraph is lifted from the Aberdeen journal 
of Wednesday, 9th October, 1872 : — 

Mr James Hurnand writes to the Atheniewn — At the sale of the effects of 
the late Mr Fiske Harrison, of Copford Hall, near Colchester, on the 30th 
ult. , an interesting relic of Burns was sold. It was the Scotch mull, or snuff- 
box, presented to Burns for having composed his poem on " The Whistle " by 
one of the competitors for that convivial trophy. The mull is a beautifully 
twisted and polished horn, with silver lid inlaid with a pebble, together with 
its appendages — a long-handled silver spoon and a little hammer, both of 
silver, suspended by silver chains, also a hare's foot, suspended in the 
same manner. The inscription round the rim is " Craigdarroch to Robert 
Burns, the Bard of 'The Whistle,' October 16, 1790." How this Scotch 
mull came in the possession of the eccentric owner of Copford Hall does not 


71 Bon- Accord Street, Aberdeen. 


Permission has been granted by the Public Parks Committee of Edinburgh 
Town Council to Mr William J. Hay to renew the memorial tablet on 
"Clarinda's" Tomb in the Canongate Churchyard, and the work is being 
proceeded with under the care of the Ninety Burns Club. 

Glasgow Herald, loth September, 1909. 


The following is the result of my search amongst the records of the old 
churchyard in Stewarton : — 

Robert Burns buried 6lii January, 1789. 
Helen Burns ,, 13th August, 1803. 
Robert Burns ,, 4th August, 1845. 
John Burns ,, 20th February, 1S46. 

John Cunningham. 
Brae House, .Stewarton. 


At 40 Ladbroke Square, Kensington Park, London, on the 19th inst., 
Sophia, wife of James Burnes, Esq., K.H., late Physician-General of the 
Army at Bombay, second daughter of the late Major General George Holmes, 

K.C.B. Glasgow Courier, 24th March, 1855. 

[W. Innes Audison]. 

MOTTO '' A .l/./A",s- A .1/.//V FOK A' T/IAT:' 

The Burns Federation. 


Hon. Pre.shlaUs— The Right Hon. The Earl of Kosebuhv, K (! , K.T. 
Andkew Caknegik, LL.D., Skibo Castle. 

Hon. J^ice-P resident — Wm. Wali.ack, LL.D., 4'2 Athole (lardeiis, Glasgow. 


President— C&iit&m D. Sneddon, V.D., J. P., Dean House, Kilmarnock. 

Vice-Presidents— Sir 3 AtiRfi Sivewright, K.C.M.G. 

Professor Lawson, D. D., The University, St. Andrews. 

Rev. James Forrest, M. A.. 8 Holland Place, Glasgow. 

James Bali.antyne, 21 Rose Street, Garnethill, Glasgow. 

Thoaias Bkow.v, Maryfield, Low-waters, Hamilton. 

Ex-Bailie Hugh Mayberry, J. P., St. Vincent Street, Glasgow. 

Hugh Alexander, J. P., Eastfield House, Rutherglen. 

J. Jeffrey Hunter, 109 Bath Street, Glasgow. 

A. M'Callcm, Xeios Office, roUoksliaws. 

Alexander Pollock, 5-2 West Nile Street, Glasgow. 

Joseph Martin, 163 West (Jeorge Street, Glas;;ow. 

Alderman William Burns, Sunderland. 

W. H. Turner, 9 The Oaks, Sunderland. 

P. Patekson. 23 Bruce Street, Dunfermline. 

Henry Durham, F.C.S., F.Ph.Sc, 13 Colherne Road, S. Kensington, 

London, S. \\ . 
John Carmichael, 27 Blytheswood Drive, Glasgow. 
Ex- Dean of Guild Stevenson, Falkirk. 

Hon. Sei:retary~Tnosi. Amos, M.A., 19 Glebe Road, Kilmarnock. 
J asis'^nt Secretary— Geo. A. Innes, F. E.I.S., Kilmarnock. 
Hon. Treasurer— Joseph Brockie, J. P., Royal Bank, Kilmarnock. 
MUlor ''Barns Chronicle"— !>. M'Naught, J. P., Benrig, Kilmaurs. 
^//t/t/or-f— Captain D. Yoillk and Adam Mackay, Kilmarnock. 


1. The Pederalioa shall consist of an Hon. President, Executive 
C'>uneil, and the affiliated members of each Club. 

2. The Executive Council, shall consist of a President, Vice-Presidents, 
Hon. Secretary, Hon. Treasurer, Editor of Annual Burm Chronicle, and 
two Auditors— all of whom shall be elected annually and be eligible for 


re-election —also of the President, Vice-President, and Secretary, or any 
other three members of, and nominated by, each affiliated Club, and other 
gentlemen of eminence as Burnsites nominated by the Executive. 

3. All Past Presidents of the Federation shall ex officio be members of 
the Executive Council. 


1. To strengthen and consolidate the bond of fellowship existing 
amongst the members of Burns Clubs and kiudred societies by universal 

2. To superintend the publication of works relating to Burns. 

3. To acquire a fund for the purchase and preservation of Holograph 
Manuscripts and other Relics connected with the Life and Works of the 
Poet, and for other purposes of a like nature, as the Executive Council 
may determine. 


1. The Headquarters of the Federation shall be at Kilmarnock, the 
town in which the Federation was inaugurated and carried to a practical 
issue, and which contains the only properly organised Burns Library and 
Museum in the United Kingdom. 

2. Properly organised Burns Clubs, St. Andrew's Societies, and 
kindred Associations may be admitted to the Federation by application in 
writing to the Hon. Secretary, enclosing copy of Constitution and Rules. 

3. The Registration Fee is 21s, on receipt of which the Diploma of 
the Federation shall be issued, after being numbered and signed by the 
President and Hon. Secretary. 

4. Members of every Burns Club or Kindred Association registered by 
the Federation shall be entitled to receive a pocket Diploma on payment 
of Is. ( Tliese payments are final — not annual.) 

5. The Funds of the Federation shall be vested in the Executive 
Council for the purposes before-mentioned. 

6. A meeting of the Executive Council shall be held annually during 
the .Summer or Autumn months at such place as may be agreed upon by 
the Oiiice-bearers, when reports on the year's transactions shall be sub- 
mitted by the Hon. Secretary and Hon. Treasurer, and Office-bearers 
elected for the ensuing year. 

7. A meeting of the Office-bearers shall take place some time before 
the Annual Meeting of the Executive Council, to make the necessary 
arrangements for the same. 

8. That each Federate<l Club shall subscribe 10s 6d per annum towards 
the fund for the publication of the Bani.s Chronicle. 

9. Notice of any amendment or alteration of the Constitution or Rules 
of the Federation, to be considered at the Annual Meeting, must be iu 
writing to the Hon. Secretary not later than 31st March. 


1. Registered Clubs are supplied free with copies of newspapers con- 
taining accounts of meetings, demonstrations, etc., organised, conducted, 
or attended by the Executive Council of the Federation, and of the 
Annual Meeting of the Kilmarnock Burns Club. 


2. Exchange of fraternal greetings on the anniversary of the Poet's 
uatal day. 

3. Members of Registereil Clubs who have provided tiiernselves with 
pocket diplomas are entitled to attend meetings of ail Clulis on the Roll of 
the Federation, they being subject to the rules of the Club visited, but 
having no voice in its management unless admitted a member according to 
local form. 

4. Members are entitled to be supplied tli rough the Secretaries of 
their respective Clubs, with copies of all works piiblisheil by the Federa- 
tion, at a discount of 33^ per cent. 


Burns Hoi.oorapu Masuscru'ts in the Kilmar 

Burns Ciirosicle and Club Directohv 

Kilmarnock Monument Museum, with 


Is (id 


is Od 


Is 6d 


Is (d 


Is Gd 


Is 6d 


Is Cd 


Is 6d 


Is 6d 


Is (id 

(out of print) 


Is (id 



Is Gd 


is Gd 


Is Gd 


is Cd 


Is Gd 


Is Gd 


Is Gd 


Is Gd 


Is Gd 

A few copies of the back vols, may still be had on application to the 
Hon. Secretary. Increased prices are charged when the vols, are out of 




BuHGH Court-room, Dhnekkmlink, 
4th September, 1909. 
The Annual Meeting of the Executive Council of the Burns Federation 
was held here to-day at 11 a.m. In the absence of Dr Wallace, President 
of the Federation, Captain D. Sneddon presided over a record attendance 
of delegates, the number present being over 1-20, and representative of 47 


Bailie Houston, on behalf of the civic authorities, extended a very 
hearty welcome to the delegates. Mr W. U. Imrie, President of the local 
Burns Club, and Bailie Husband also added a few words of welcome. In 
returning thanks. Captain Sneddon gave a sketch of the inception of the 
Federation, and spoke of the work it had on hand. Prof. Lawson, St. 
Andrews University, also thanked the Corporation for the kind reception 
accorded to the delegates. Kefn-shnients were served by the Corpora- 
tion, and the delegates had an opportunity of inspecting the Council 
Chambers, which contain some fine pictures. 


The busines.s meeting started at noon -Captain Sneddon presiding. 
The following delegates were present : — 

No, 0, Kilmarnock— Captain Sneddon, D. M 'Naught, T. Anios, and 
Police Judge Munro. 

No. 1, London Robert Burns Club-— Henry Durham, F.C.S. ; James 

No. 3, Glasgow Tarn o' Shanter— Thomas P. Thomson. 

No. 9, Glasgow Royalty — James M'NicoU, Robert Finlay, and George 
E. Connell. 

No. 13, St. Andrews— Professor Lawson, D.D. 

No. 14, Dundee — James Sharp, James Fowler, and ^V'iIliam Surgeoner. 

No. 20, Airdrie— William M'Gregor. 

No. -21, Greenock— Alex. Ramsay, VVm. Lees, B.A., and Robert 

No. '22, Edinburgh — Robert Duncan. 

No. 36, Glasgow Rosebery— William Allan, Alex. Pollock, George 
Arm'ur, John A. Biggs, L.D.S., and Peter Smith, jun. 

No. 37, Dollar— James B. Green, J. M'Gruther, and J. M'Geachan. 

No. 49, Glasgow Bridgeton— Malcolm Henry and William Cochran. 

No. 50, Stirling— John Craig, J. F. Oswald, and R. Sandeman. 

No. 55, Govan Fairfield— Thomas Fullarton. 

No. 57, Thornliebank— Robert Hutton and Malcolm Jamieson. 

No. 62, Cupar — Provost Williamson and David F. Esplin. 

No. 63, Glasgow Mossgiel — Wm. Patrick and Robert Parker. 

No. 67, Glasgow Carlton— David Davidson, Wm. Thomson, and Wm. 
J. Straiton. 

No. 68, Glasgow Sandyford— James Michie, John Russell, andex-Bailie 
Mayberry, J. P. 


No. 71. Carlisle -William Keid. 

No. 76, Brecliiii — William Anderson and James A. Hiitclieon. 

No. So, Dunftrmline United -W. T. Imiie, \V. Black, and V. Paterson. 

No. S9. ."Sunderland — Munlocii M'Lennan. 

No. 01, Shettleston — Thomas Bairie, R. Cameron, and (iavin Gilmour. 

No. 97, Kilmarnock HellHeld— Daniel Picken and Thomas Neilson. 

No. 99, Parlinnie — James Cram, I)r Sinclair, and Alex. Mackay. 

No. U«>, Hamilton Mos.sgiel — Thomas Brown. 

No. 108, East Calder and District — Geo. Young and James Robertson. 

No. 113, Vale of Leven Glencairn — Alexander Campbell and Robert 

No. lis, Glasgow Albany — R. D. Donaldson and R. Carmicliael. 

No. l*J(i, Falkirk — R, H. Loclihead, H. B. Watson, and F. Johnston. 

No. 1*27, Cowdenbeath Haggis — Mr Miller and J. Pain. 

No. 128, Cowdenbeath (ilencairn— Thomas Fergusson, Malcolm 
M' Donald, David Smith, and Duncan Beaton. 

No. 139, Glasgow National — lames Ballantyne, John Carmichael, and 
Joseph Martin. 

No. 150, Kilmarnock Jolly Beggars — Andrew Sinclair, Alex. Beggs, 


and Robert J. Green. 

No. I'll, Old Kilpatrick — William Gallacher, John Brock, and Robert 

No 1.33, Glasgow Scottish— John W^ilson. 

No. 155, East Stirlingshire -Ex-Dean of Guild Stevenson, John D. 
Silcock, and James M' Williams. 

No. 164, Kinning Park — James Miller and Thomas Deans. 

No. 168, Riccarton— J. P. Dickson and John Ford. 

No. 169, Gla.sgow Burns Clubs Association— Rev. James Forrest, 
M.A., and James Jeffrey Hunter. 

No. 178, Begbie's, Kilmarnock — A. Mackay and G. F. Moore. 

No. 181, Glasgow Primro&e- G. R. Hunter, Secretary ; Mr Mnir, and 
J. H. Dennistoun. 

No. 183, Londonderry — James C. Scrimgeour. 

No. 184, Blairadam Shanter — John Ramsay, William Morton, and 
Thomas Hunter. 

Apologies for absence were intimated from the following ; — Dr 
Andrew Carnegie, Skibo Castle ; No. 121, Hamilton Junior ; No. 130, 
Row ; No. 163, Gateshead ; No. 170, Larkhali ; No. 59, Gourock Jolly 
Beggrs; N.> 9S, Lanark; No. 109, Glas^'ow Caledonia; No. 112, 
Dumfiies Burns HowfF Clul). 

The Hon. Secretary (Mr Amos) reported that the following thirteen 
Burns Clubs had joined the Federation during the past year : — The Burns 
Club of Oregon, Portland. Oretjon, U.S.A., Irvine, Ardrossan, Meikle 
Earnock Original Burns Club, Renfrew, Prestwick, Beghie's (Kilmarnock), 
Dailly, Tollcross, Glasgow Primrose, Stane Mossgiel, Londonderry, and 
Blairadam. He expressed regret that fewer membership cards than usual 
had l)een disposed of, and hoped this ndght be remedied. He also spoke 
briefly about the outstanding events of the >ear in the Burns vvorl'l, viz. — 
the publication of No. 18 of the C/iroiiir/f, the celebration of the Ter- 
Jubilee of the birth of the Poet, the preservation of the Auld Brig o' Ayr, 
and the work that was being done to establish a Chair of Scottish History 
and Literatuie. The treasurer's statement was then read. It showed 
that the total income of the year was £154 5s lid, and the total expendi- 
ture £122 3s 6d. The year had begun with £245 Pis in the bank, and 
ended with £277 14s 5d. 

Ex-Bailie H. Mayberry, J. P., (Glasgow, in moving approval of the 
reports, referred to the illness of Dr Wallace, and suggested that the 


secretary should record in the minutes their sympathy with l)r Wallace, 
and their appreciation of the excellent work he had accomplished since 
becoming associated with the Federation. 

Mr James Ballantyne, Glasgow, seconded the motion, which was 
unanimously adopted. 

Mr M 'Naught, editor of the Burns Chronich, in submitting his report, 
said that the Chronicle had maintained its circulation, and had given a 
substantial profit to the Federation. The outstanding feature of the 
publication was the great amount of original matter it contained that was 
not to be found anywhere else. He asked that a committee be nominated to 
assist Captain Sneddon and himself in the preparation of the Chronicle, and 
he applied for a renewal of the annual grant. 

Mr J. Jeffrey Hunter moved that a small committee be appointed to 
assist Captain Sneddon and Mr M 'Naught, and that the grant of £25 for 
the next issue of the Chronicle be renewed. He moved that tha committee 
consist of the Rev. James Forrest and A M 'Galium on the literary side, 
and Messrs Joseph Martin and James Ballantyne on the business side. 

Mr Alex. Pollock seconded the motion, whicli was unanimously 

Captain Sneddon reported on the progress that had been made with 
the preservation of the Auld Brig o' Ayr- during the past twelve months. 
The whole of the work had been accomplished with the exception of the 
restoration of the parapet and the roadway. The difficulty they had was 
in carrying out this work from an arch;«ological point of view with the 
limited funds they had on hand, and the committee had resolved to take in 
offers for a contract to complete the work. He thought the Town Council 
of Ayr were entitled to pay for what was called rebuilding, and he 
expected that the Brig would be completely finished before the end of the 
year. He considered that a great amount of credit was due to Mr Wilson, 
the engineer, and Mr Morris, for the way in Mdiich the work had been 
carried out. Mr W. Eeid, Carlisle, as an expert, wished to congratulate 
the committee on the admirable manner in which the restoration had been 
carried out. 

Prof. Lawson gave a report on the proposed Chair of Scottish History 
and Literature. He expressed his deep regret at the absence through ill- 
ness of Dr Wallace, who has this scheme so much at heart. He suggested 
that better results could be obtained if the Executive of the Federation 
met and prepared a plan by which the money reqixired could be allocated 
among the different Clubs according to their financial position. The total 
sum on hand or promised was nearly £4()0(), and of this Burns Clubs had 
only contributed a little over £200, and they could not say that that was 
an adequate proportion to £20,000. He sincerely hoped that through the 
Federation going along wise and persistent lines their task would be 
accomplished, and moved that they adopt this interim report, and 
anew commend the matter to the Clubs that were on the roll of the 

Mr James Ballantyne, in moving a vote of thanks to Professor Lawson, 
said they expected to raise from £12,000 to £15,000 for this object by the 
Exhibition in Glasgow in 1911. Mr John Wilson, Glasgow Scottish Burns 
Club, asked that a detailed report of what Burns Clubs are doing should 
be given next year. 

Mr Cochran, Bridgeton Burns Club, thought that the Committee 
should give all available information about the movement, and thereby 
endeavour to arouse enthusiasm in the matter. 


Mr M'Lenuan, Sunderland, moved, and Mr Reid, Carlisle, seconded the 
following motion : — " Every Society represented at the Annual Meeting 
shall have voting power according to its membership." 

Ex-Bailie Mayberry moved the previous question, and was seconded 
by Mr Thomson, London Robert Burns Club. 

On a division, only the mover and seconder supported the motion. 

A letter was read from Dr Wallace intimating his resignation of the 
Presidency owing to ill-health, and assuring the members of his hearty 
wishes for the prosperity and expansion of the Federation. 

On the motion of Mr D. M 'Naught, it was unanimously agreed to 
appoint Dr Wallace Hon. Vice-President of the Federation. 

The Secretary then read the followmg letter from Mr Andrew 
Carnegie : — 

Skibo Castle, Dornoch, Sutherland, 
August, 27, 19(»9. 
My Dear Mr Amos, 

Your kind invitation is most tempting. I should really 
like to be present when Dunfermline is honoured by tiie meeting being 
held there. No doubt the members will visit the tomb of St. Margaret, 
upon which our greatest genius threw himself and wept. Unfortunately, 
just at the time of the meeting the Principals of the Scottish Universities 
and their wives are to be here as our guests, and it is impossible for me to 

With deep regrets and many thanks for your kind remembrance of me, 
Always very truly yours, 

(Signed) Andrew Carneoie. 

P.S. — No tribute paid to Burns in recent times can equal iliat of 
Morley"s in speaking to the Colonial Press delegates : — 

" Would anybody deny that there are half-a-dozen lines of Burns 
which have more etiect upon political thought and action than all the 
millions of leading articles that have ever been written ?" 

Many have been guessing what six lines he had in mind. I select : — 

" Ye know and all proclaim. 
The Royalty of Man." 

" The rank is but the guinea stamp, 
The man's the gowd for a' that." 

" When man to man the world o'er 
Shall brithers be for a' that." 

My favourite of all tributes is this from Horace Greeley : — " Of all 
men who ever lived. Burns nestled most closely to the bosom of 
humanity." I add one more line as a rule of life — " Thine own reproach 
alone do fear." 

(Initials) A. C. 

Prof. Lawson moved that Mr Andrew Carnegie, who was a keen and 
acute student of tiie works of Burns, be invited to become an Hon. 
President of the Federation. 

Ex-Dean of Guild Stevenson, Falkirk, seconded the motion, which 
was adopted with acclamation. 



On the motion of Mr Duncan Beaton, Cowdenbeath, seconded by Mi- 
Andrew Sinclair, Kilmarnock, it was unanimously' agreed to appoint 
Captain Sneddon President of the Federation, and also to re-elect the 
other office-bearers. The following gentlemen were added to the list of 
Vice-Presidents : — Henry Durham, F.C.S., &c., London Robert Burns 
Club ; John Carmichael, President National Burns Club ; ex-Dean of 
Guild Stevenson, Falkirk ; Peter Paterson, Secretary Dunfermline Burns 

A vote was taken as between Lanark and Carlisle for the next meet- 
ing place, and Lanark was chosen by 45 votes to 27. It was also agreed 
toehold the meeting of 1911 in Cllasgow, and of 1912 in Carlisle. 

On the motion of Mr Jeffrey Hunter, the meeting closed with a 
hearty vote of thanks to the Chairman. 


Immediately after the business meeting the delegates set out in 
motor brakes for Tulliallan Castle, the seat of Sir James Sivewright, 
K.C.M.G., Vice-President of the Federation, and Hon. President of 
Dunfermline Burns Club. On their arrival they were most heartily 
greeted and hospitably entertained by Sir James and Lady Sivewright. 
In an eloquent and stirring speech. Sir James, as an ardent- admirer of our 
National Poet, welcomed the Federation, and Captain Sneddon suitably 
replied. A photograph of the company was taken before the Castle, and 
after a walk through the beautiful grounds the partj- returned to Dun- 
fermline. Here they were entertained to tea in the pavilion in Pittencrieff 
Glen by the Carnegie Trust. The President of the Trust welcomed the 
Federation to the "auld grey toon," and Captain Sneddon returned 
thanks for their hospitality. 

The local arrangements were most successfully carried out by Mr P. 
Paterson, Secretary of the Dunfermline Burns Club, to whom all present 
are deeply indebted. 


On the night previous to the meeting the local Burns Club organised 
a smoking concert, chiefly for the entertainment of the delegates who were 
staying overnight in Dunfermline. Mr W. D. Imrie, the President of the 
Club, made an ideal Chairman. An impromptu programme of songs, 
recitations, and short addresses was submitted, and many of the items 
were received with great enthusiasm. The concert was a great success, 
and formed a fitting prelude to the most successful Federation meeting 
hitherto held. 

THOMAS AMOS, Hon. Secij. 

Annexed is Mr Carnegie's reply to the invitation of the Federation : — 
Skibo Castle, Dornoch, Sutherland, 
September 7 th, 1909. 
Dear Mr Amos, 

I am deeply sensible of the great honour conferred by 
making me an Honorary President of the Burns Federation. Please 
convey my thanks to the officials. 

Yours always, — a true disciple of the Bard, 

Andrew Carnegie. 
Thomas Amos, Esq., 
Hon Secy. Burns Federation, Kilmarnock. 


List of Clubs which have subscribed for the 
Publishing Fund, 1908-1909. 

National Burns Club, Ltd. £\ 


Glasgow and District 




Baillieston Caledonia 









Glasgow Mauchline S 




Ninety Club, Edinburgh ... 



Hamilton ... 









Kilbowie Jolly Beggars ... 






Falkirk '.. 



Vale of Leven Glencairn 






Cowdenbeath Haggis 



Glasgow Scottish ... 



Glasgow Thistle ... 



Blackburn-on- Almond 









Pai.sley Charleston... 



Newcastle and Tyneside ... 






Larkhall Thistle 



Glasgow Carlton ... 






Do. (arrears) 



Glasgow Haggis 






Bristol Caledonian Society 



East Stirlingshire ... 






S. Australian Caledonian 





Ercildoune ... 



Nottingham Scottish Assoc. 



Blackburn ... 



Walker-on-Tyne ... 




Kilmarnock Jolly Beggars 















Gourock Jolly Beggars 



Whitburn ... 



Barlinnie ... 



Rulherglen Cronies 






Auchinleck Boswell 






Cowdenbeath Glencairn . . . 









Greenock Cronies ... 






Kilmarnock Bellfield 



Hamilton Mos.sgiel 



Newarthill ... 



Glasgow Tam o' Shanter . . . 






Glasgow Albany ... 



Do. (arrears) ... 



Western, Partick 



East Calder and District 


Glasgow Sandy ford 



Glasgow Royalty ... 


Old Kilpatrick 





St. Andrews 



Gateshead and District 








I at £i IS 



64 „ los 6d 



3 ,, los . 










Last year's amount 





ase £a, 


Alphabetical List of Federated Clubs, 



No. 179. 















Airdrie — Galeside 
















Ardrossan Castle 

• 52- 














Baillieston Caledonia 















Dunfermline — United 





— Heron 








East Cald 



Blackburn-on- Almond 




Blairadam Shanter 


Edinburgh— South 





1— Ninety 


Bolton Juniors 


East Stirlingshire 






















Broxburn —Rosebery 



and District 





-Tarn 0' Shanter 






1 10. 
















Carlisle— Border 





Carstairs Junction 



Car rick 


Chattanooga, U.S.A. 








Tolly Beggars 





St. David's 







Cleveland Scottish Association 








St. RoUox 


Coalburn— Rosebery 









Cowdenbeath — Haggis 




Cowdenbeath —Glencairn 












St. RoUox Jolly 





Cumnock — The Winsome 



Mauchline Soc. 


Cupar [Willie 







Glas£^ow— Co-operative 

No. 175. 


,, Caledonian 



,, Hutchesontown 



,, Caledonia 



,, Soulhern 


I iS. 




., Nalional 






The Scottish 



,, Gorbals 



,, Kinning Park 


I So. 




,, Primrose 



Glasgow and District 



Gourock— Jolly Beggars 



Govan — Fairfield 








Greenock— Cronies 






,, JMossgiel 


J -71 

,, Junior 



■Royal Oak 












Johannesburg, S.A. 












,, Jolly Beggars 



., Begbie's 



,, Glencairn 















Larbert and Stenhousemuir 


















Mauchline-The Jolly 




. Meikle Earnock 
Morpeth (dormant) 
Muirkirk— Lapruik 
Newcastle and Tyneside 

,, (dormant) 

Old Kilpatrick 
Oregon, U.S.A. 


Pa nick 

,, Western 

,, St. Johnstone 
Plymouth and District 

Riccarton — Kirkslyle 

San Francisco 
St. Andrews 
Stane Mossgiel 


Vale of Leven— Glencairr> 



ox THE 


No. o-KILMARNOCK Burns Club. Insliiuled 1808. Federated 1SS5. 
Place and date of meeting, George Hotel, 25th January. President, 
The Right Hon. Lord Howard de Walden ; Vice-president, N. D. 
M'Michael, B.L. , John Finnic Street ; Secretary, Thomas Amos, 
M.A., 19 Glebe Road, Kilmarnock. Committee— Captain D. 
Sneddon, V.D., J. P. ; D, M 'Naught, T-P- ; Joseph Brockie, J. P. ; 
G. A. Innes, F.E.I.S. ; Captain D. Yuille, fames Middieton, 
J.P. ; Wm. M'Menan, B.A. ; Bailie M. Robertson, J. P. ; Wm. 
Heron, Police Judge Munro, ^.V . ; Robert Wyllie, ex-Bailie 
Kerr, B.L. 

No. I— LONDON Robert Burns Club. Instituted 1868. Federated 1885. 
President, James Thomson, The Cedars, Forti.s Green Road, East 
Finchley, N. ; Vice-president, Neil Turner, Daily Chronicle, 
Salisbury Square, E.G. ; Immediate Past President, Henry 
Durham, F.C.S., F. Phys. Soc, London, V.-P. Burns Federation, 
13 Coleherne Road, So. Kensington, S.W. ; Secretary, A. 
M'Killican, The Aspens, Christchurch Avenue, Brondesbury, 
N.W. ; Hon. Treasurer, C. J. Wilkinson-Pimbury, 60 Marmora 
Road, Honor Oak, S.E. ; Pipers, R. Reith, G. Shand, A. Cowie, 
and Sergeant Peter M'Lean (late Scots Guards) ; Auditors, C. G. 
Spence, 20 King's Avenue, Muswell Hill, and Archibald Kirrby, 
28 Throgmorton Street, E.G. ; Commissionaire, Sergeant Harvey, 
Basildon House, Moorgate Street. Committee— F. W. Warren, 
Arthur R. Molison, T. Ernest Price, H. D. Faith, Stewart 
Stockman, T. W. Jacobs, jun., R. A. Walker, W. A. Herbert, 
jun., W. S. Birch, M. D. Kerr, and A. T. Bromfield. 

No. 2— ALEXANDRIA Burns Club. Instituted 1884. Federated 1885. 
Place and date of meeting. Village School, 7.30, first Friday of 
each month. President, William Livsey, 20 Leven Bank Terrace, 
Jamestown ; Vice-president, Matthew Campbell, 29 Susannah 
Street, Alexandria ; Secretary, Duncan Carswell, Linnbrane Ter- 
race, Alexandria; Treasurer, James Merrilees, Charleston House, 
Alexandria. Committee — Richard Thomson, Jas. M'Kenzie, 
George Allan, Donald M'Dougall, and A. M'Farlane. 

No. 3— GLASGOW Tam o' Shanter Club— Instituted 1880. Federated 1885. 
Place and date of meeting, Trades House Restaurant, 89 Glassford 
Street, last Tuesday in October, November, February, and March. 
President, Rev. James Forrest, M.A., 8 Holland Place, Glasgow ; 
Vice-president. John Carmichael, 27 Blythswood Drive, Glasgow ; 
Secretary, J. Jeffrey Hunter, solicitor, '109 Bath Street, Glasgow. 


Committee — H. J. Altmann, Jas. Ballanline, George Fisher, Alex. 
Izett, Alex. M'Kenzie, James Ritchie, John Smith (restaurateur), 
T. P. Thomson, David Threshie, J. W.VVartlen, J. A. K. Watson, 
and Edward Wilson. Special features of Club — Literary evenings 
and useful movements for the promotion of the Burns cult. 

No. 4— CALLANDER Burns Club— Instituted 1S77. Federated 1885. 
Secretary, James S. Anderson, Callander. 

No. 5— ERCILDOUNE Burns Club. Instituted January, 1885. Federated 
26th November, 1885. Place of meeting. Red Lion Hotel. Presi- 
dent, G. Miles, High Street, Earlston ; Vice-presidents, A. A. 
Burt, W^illiambank, and II. Wallace, High Street, Earlston ; 
Secretary, Archd. M. Black, Market Place, Earlston. 

No. 6— ALLO.\ Burns Club. Instituted 1873. Federated 1885. Secretary, 
R. Tait Melville, 44 Mill Street, Alloa. 

No. 7— GLASGOW^ Thistle Burns Club. Instituted 1882. Federated 1885. 
President, Richard Bogie, 28 Napiershall Street ; Vice-president, 
William W^ingate, 10 Oswald Street : Secretary, D. R. Mont- 
gomery, 122 So. Portland Street ; Treasurer, J no. Eadie, 12 
Bridge Street, S.S. 

No. 8— MORPETH (dormant). Last Secretary, John Dobson, Oldgate 
Street, Morpeth. 

No. 9— GLASGOW Royalty Burns Club. Instituted 1882. Federated 1886. 
President, John Gibson, 17 Nigel Gardens, Waverley Park, 
Glasgow ; Vice-president, Robert Finlay, 219 Argyle Street ; 
Secretary, Wm. C. Rodger, 44 Bath Street, Glasgow. 

No. 10— DU.MBARTON Burns Club. Instituted 1859. Federated 1886. 
Place and date of meeting, Elephant Hotel, 25th January, 1910. 
President, Charles M'Kinnon, Oxhill, Dumbarton ; Vice-presi- 
dent, James Nimmo, Barloan Crescent, Dumbarton ; Secretary, 
Wm. Baird, Union Bank House, Dumbarton. Committee — 
Provost MacFarlan, Master of W^orks Wilson, Treasurer J. G. 
Buchanan, Stewart Paterson, M.A., Major Cockburn, John 
M'Clelland, and John M'Pherson. Special features of the Club- 
Celebration of the Poet's Birthday. 

No. II— CHESTERFIELD Burns Society. Federated 1886. Secretary, 
Geo. Edward Drennan, 77 Salter Gate, Chesterfield, Derbyshire. 

No. 12— BARROW-IN-FURNESS Burns Club (dormant). Instituted 1886. 
Last Secretary, Alex. M 'Naught, 4 Ramsden Square, Barrow-in- 

No. 13— ST. ANDREWS Burns Club. Instituted 1869. Federated 1886. 
Place and date of meeting. Cross Keys Hotel, Tuesday, 25th 
January, 1910. President, Dr James Orr, 3 Alexandra Place, 
St. Andrews ; Vice-president. E. E. Morrison, Bonnytown, 
Stravithie, Fife; Secretary, W. Macbeth RoV)ertson, solicitor, 119 
Market Street, St. Andrews. Committee — Rev. Professor Lawson, 
J. L. Low, C. H. Freeman, William Duncan, Bailie Goodwillie, 
T. Evans Johnston, and Andrew Bennett. 

No. 14— DUNDEE Burns Club. Instituted i860. Federated 18S6. Place 
and date of meeting, Club Rooms, 36 Nethergate, first Wednesday 
of month, at 8.30 p.m. Hon. Pre.sident,\T. Martin White of 


Balruddery ; President, James Sharp, 36 Nethergate ; Vice-presi- 
dent, J. I'urvis, 36 Nethergate ; Secretary, P. Allison Morris, 36 
Nethergate, Dundee ; Treasurer, D. R. Roberts ; Curator, Hugh 
Ross; Hon. Librarian, D. Mitchell. Special features of club — 
Literary, social, and musical. Library. 
No. 15— BELFAST Burns Club. Instituted 1872. Federated 1886. 
Secretary, Barclay M'Conkey, Belfast. 

No. 16— SYDNEY Burns Club, N.S.W. Instituted 1880. Federated 1886. 
Secretary, W. Telfer, School of Arts, Pitt Street, Sydney. 

No. 17— NOTTINGHAM Scottish Society (dormant). Federated 1886. 

No. 18— LIVERPOOL Burns Club. Instituted 1866. Federated 1886. 
Place and date of meeting. Hotel St. George, Liverpool, 25th 
January. President, Colonel Richard Bulman, V.D., Mersey 
"Chambers, Liverpool ; Secretary, Major Robert Sinclair Archer, 
V.D., Clifton House, Birkenhead. Special features of Club — 
Lectures and papers during winter on Scottish subjects in hall of 
St. Andrew's Church of Scotland ; also offers prizes for essays on 
Scottish subjects to English Literature Class in Liverpool 

No. 19. AUCKLAND Burns Club. Instituted 1884. Federated 1886. 
Secretary, John Horn, Wellington Street, Auckland, New Zealand. 

No. 20— AIRDRIE Burns Club. Instituted 1885. Federated 1886. Place 
and date of meeting, Royal Hotel, Airdrie, 25th January. 
President, Walter Cochrane, South Bridge Street, Airdrie ; Vice- 
president, Wm. M'Gregor, Ardcoille, Airdrie ; Secretary and 
Treasiuer, G. B. Motherwell, jun., solicitor, 4 East High 
Street, Airdrie. Committee— John Watson, Wm. Anderson, 
C. R. Larkman, T. C. Neil, and R. Sutter. 

No. 21— GREENOCK Burns Club. Instituted 1802. Federated 1886. 
Place of meeting. Club Rooms, Nicolson Street. President, 
John Barbour, Newtondale Cottage, Roxburgh Street ; Vice- 
presidenis, Alex. Lambie, Ravenshall, Bogston, and J. Eraser 
Baton, Home Cottage ; Joint Secretaries, Geo. Dunlop, 27 Ard- 
gowan Street, and Wm. James, 13 South Street. Special features 
of Club— Club rooms are open to members at any time. Keys 
with Curator on premises, 36 Nicholson Street. Library has valu- 
able collection of editions of Burns, Fergusson, Gait, etc., and the 
walls are covered with signed portraits, mcluding those of some of 
the most distinguished men in the country, who are honorary mem- 
bers cf the Club. The Club makes a special feature of inter- 
visitation meetings with Burns Clubs in the West of Scotland, also 
of ladies' nights. Visitors are always welcome to attend Club 
meetings. The Greenock Club is the oldest Bums Club in the 

No. 22— EDINBURGH Burns Club. Instituted 1848. Federated 1886. 
President, Thomas Carmichael, S.S.C. 10 Duke Street, Edin- 
burgh ; Vice-president, J. Macintyre Henry, F.R.I. B.A., 7 So. 
Charlotte Street, Edinburgh ; Secretary, Robert Duncan, solicitor, 
38 Lygon Road, Edinburgh ; Treasurer, Kenneth Henderson, 
C.A., 8 York Buildings, Edinburgh. 

No. 23— ADELAIDE South Australian Caledonian Society. Instituted 1881. 
P'ederated 1886. Secretary, II. Tassie, Gay's Arcade, Adelaide, 

South Australia. 


No. 24— GLASGOW Hank Burns Clul. (vloiniiinl). Insliluled 1884. Fede- 
rated 1 886. 

No. 25— WINNIPI-:G St. .Vndrew's Society. Federated 1SS6. Seaetary, 
David I'hilip, Government Buildings, Winnipeg. 

No. 26— PERTH Burns Club. Instituted 1873. Federated 18S6. Secretary, 
John Harper, 08 St. John Street, Perth. 

No. 27— GL.VSGOW Springburn Burns Club. Insiiiuled 1S84. Federated 
18S6. Secretary, Cameron Henderson, Syriam Terrace, Spring- 
burn, Glasgow. 

No. 28— MAUCHLINE Jolly Beggars Burns Club. 

No. 29— BOLTON Burns Club. Instituted 1881. Federated 1886. Secretary, 
Harry George, 32 Ilalstead Street, The Harregh, Bolton. 

No. 30 -BLACKBURN Burns Club. Instituted 1884. Federated 9th July, 

1886. Place and date of meeting, Victoria Hotel, Cort Street, 
Blackburn, 25th January, 1910, and occasional. President, Wm. 
Ferguson, Dryfesdale, Park Road, Lytham, Lancashire ; Vice- 
president, Thomas Anderson, 80 Penny Street, Blackburn, Lanes. 
Secretary and 'J reastirer, Robert Ferguson, solicitor, 9 Tacketts 
Street, Blackburn, Lanes. ; Auditors, J. Rutherford and W. 
Maxwell. Committee— J. Little, J. M'Vittie, W. Maxwell, J. 
Forbes, T. Ferguson, ¥. S. Jardine, J. Smith, J. Rutherford, 
F. Wilkinson, W. Wallbank, 'j. C. Sharpies, and Dr A. Reid. 
Special features of Club — (i) To commemorate the Birthday of 
Burns ; (2) to encourage the study of Burns and of the Scottish 
Poets, and of literature generally. 

No. 31— SAN FRANCISCO Scottish Thistle Club. Instituted 1882. Fede- 
rated 1886. Secretary^ Geo. W. Paterson, 801 Guerero Street, 
San Francisco, U.S.A. 

No. 32 -NEWARK Burns Club. Federated 1886. Secretary, John Hogg, 
Caledonian Club, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.A. 

No. 33— GLASGOW Haggis Burns Club. Instituted 1872. Federated 1886. 
Place of meeting. National Burns Club, Ltd., 93 Douglas Street. 
President, Major J. R. Metcalfe, J. P., 140 London Street. Seo-e- 
tary, William S. Baird, writer, 1S5 St. Vincent Street, Glasgow. 

No. 34— CARRICK Burns Club. Instituted 1859. F^ederated 1887. Place 
and dale of meeting, 62 Cilassford Street, Glasgow, last Tuesday of 
each month. President, William Crawford, 23 Minerva Street, 
Glasgow ; Vice-president, Robert Thorley, 30 Aberfeldy Street, 
Dennistoun, Glasgow; Secretary, Thomas Ferguson, 412 Parlia- 
mentary Road, Glasgow ; Treasurer, James Welsh, 46 Dixon 
Road, Crossbill, Glasgow. Special features of Club— Study of 
Burns and kindred literature. 

No. 35— DALRV Burns Club. Instituted 1826. Federated 18S7. Place 
and date of meeting. Dairy, Friday nearest 25ih January. Chair- 
man, William Carrick, inspector of poor. Dairy ; Secretary, D. 
Johnston. Tintagel, Dairy ; Treasurer, P. Comrie, Dairy. 

No. 36— GLASGOW Rosebery Burns Club. Instituted 1885. Federated 

1887. Place of meeting, Alexandra Hotel, Glasgow, at 8 p.m. 
President, William .-Mian, 7 Park Road, Glasgow ; Vice-president, 


John A. Biggs, I.. D.S., 13 Somerset Place ; Secretary, J. Gartshore 
Scott, writer, 58 West Regent Street, Glasgow ; Treasurer, Peter 
Smith, jun., 56 Cathedral Street. Committee — James Angus, 
A. G. Andrews, G. Armour, J. R. Colquhoun, J. Ferguson, W. 
C. Goldie, J. S. Jamieson, D. Kelso, James Murray, J. D. 
M'Kinley, W. M'\'ean, H. F. Milligan, A. Pollock, W. Shackle- 
ton, A. Smith, John Smith, and A. Thomson, jun. Special features 
of Club — A series of lectures on Scottish literature and history 
during the winter months ; competitions (.senior and junior) for the 
encouragement of the study of Scottish songs, e.specially those of 

No. 37— DOLLAR Burns Club. Instituted 1887. Federated 30th Dec, 
1887. Place of meeting. Castle Campbell Hotel. President, 
Provost J. B. Green, Station Road, Dollar; Vice-president, Bailie 
R. Waddell, Bridge Street, Dollar ; Secretary, William V'ounger, 
Sydney House, Dollar. Special feati-.res of Club— To encourage 
Burns's songs and Scottish literature. 

No. 38— GLASGOW Jolly Beggars Burns Club (dormant). Instituted 1SS7. 
Federated 1888. 

No. 39— GLASGOW St. David's Burns Club (dormant). Inslituted 1887. 
Federated 1889. 

No. 40— ABERDEEN Burns Club. Instituted 18S7. Federated 1S89. 

No. 41— DENNISTOUN Burns Club (dormant). Inslituted 1887. Federated 
1889. Last Secre!a)y, John B. MTntosh, 300 Duke Street, 

No. 42— CRIEFF Burns Club. Instituted 1880. Federated 1891. Secretary, 
Wm. Pickard, Meadow Place, Crieff. 

No. 43— GLASGOW Northern Burns Club (dormant). Federated 1891. Last 
Secretary, James Weir, 216 New City Road, Glasgow. 

No. 44 — FORFAR Burns Club (dormant). Instituted 1890. Federated 1891. 

No. 45— CUMNOCK Burns Club. Instituted 1887. Federated 189 1. Secre- 
tary, II. R. M'CulIey, Hazelbank, Old Cunmock. 

No. 46— WARWICKSHIRE Burns Club. Instituted 1S80. Federated 1891. 
Secretary, Robert Greenfield, F.R. H.S., Ranelegh Nursery, 

No. 47— GLASGOW St. Rollox Burns Club (dormant). Instituted 1889. 
Federated 1891. 

No. 48— PAISLEY Burns Club. Instituted January, 1805. Federated 189 1. 
Place and date of meeting, Globe Hotel, Paisley, first Thursday 
of every month from October till May inclusive. President, John 
Wilson Pollock, Lyndhurst, Hawkhead Road, Paisley ; Vice- 
president, John M. Lang, Endfield, Riccartsbar Avenue, Paisley ; 
Secretary, Geo. H. Cockburn, St. Ives, Whitehaugh Drive, 

No. 49— GLASGOW Bridgeton Burns Club. Instituted 1870. Federated 
1891. President, Malcolm A. Hendry, 5 Clayton Terrace, Dennis- 
toun, Glasgow; Vice-president, Thomas Potter, jun., 41 Cumber- 
land Street, Calton, Glasgow ; Secretary, William Cochran, 
solicitor, 190 West George Street, Glasgow ; Assistant Secretary, 


T. TuUis Cochran, solicitor, 190 West George Street, Glasgow ; 
Treasurer, William Reid, F.S.A.A. ; ex-President, George H. 
Laird. Directors — Councillor Colquhoun, D. L. Stevenson, Dr 
Alex. Munro, 1). Baird, Peter White, Andrew llay, William 
Baird, J- M. Campbell, and ex-Bailie William Nicol. Special 
features of Club— The encouragement and promotion of Burns's 
works and of Scottish history and literature amongst the school 
children by means of annual competitions. 

No. 50— STIRLING Burns Club. Instituted 1887. P^ederated 1891. Place 
and date of meeting. Golden Lion Hotel, January 25th. President, 
Councillor Ridley Sandernan, 22 Forth Crescent, Stirling ; Secre- 
tary, Alexander Dun, 37 Murray Place, Stirling ; Treasurer, J- S. 
Henderson, solicitor, Stirling. Committee — Messrs John Craig, 
J. C. Muirhead, D. B. Morris, Ronald Walker, J. F. Oswald, 
W. A. Weir, Peter Hunter, Bailie Buchanan, Councillor Menzies, 
Alex. Love, J. Mann, Wm. Cunningham, J. W. Paterson, J. 
Crawford, D. Pearson, J. H. Gordon. 

No. 51— CHICAGO Caledonian Society. Federated 1892. Secretary, Q,\\3.x\^% 
T. Spence, 3002 Wabash Avenue, Chicago. 

No. 52— DUMFRIES Mechanics' Burns Club. Federated 1892. Secretary, 
James Anderson, 55 St. Michael Street, Dumfries. 

No. 53— GOVAN Fairfield Burns Club. Instituted 25th January, 1886. 
Federated 23rd September, 1892. Place and date of meeting, 
4 Holm Street, first Wednesday of months September to March. 
Hon. President, ex-Bailie Hugh Lymburn ; Hon. Vice-president, 
Thomas Black ; President, Thomas Fullarton, 917 Govan Road, 
Govan ; Vice-president, Hugh Marr, 37 White Street, Govan ; 
Secretary, Charles Maltman, 16 M'Kechnie Street, Govan. Com- 
mittee — James Wands and Donald M'Callum. 

Xo. 54— PERTH St. Johnstone Burns Club. Federated 1892. 

No. 55 — DERBY Burns Club. Federated 1892. Place and date of meeting. 
Royal Hotel, 9 p.m., Friday. President, Councillor G. Innes ; 
Vice-presidents, J. D Seaton, 33 Renals Street, Derby, and J. 
Peacock, Tresilian, Duffield Road, Derby ; Secretary, C. D. 
Shand, (jlencairn, Leopold Street, Derby. Special features of 
Club— To unite Scotsmen and to foster a spirit of friendship, and 
to perpetuate the memory of the Immortal Bard. 

No. 56-LAPRAIK (Muirkirk) Burns Club. Instituted 1893. Federated 
1893. Place of meeting, Eglinton Arms Hotel. President, James 
Clark, Crossflat, Muirkirk ; Vice-president, T. Weir, Victoria 
Buildings, Main Street, Muirkirk ; Secretary, Hugh Bell, Roslyn, 
Wellwood Street, Muirkirk ; Treasurer, A. Pringle. Committee 
— ^Messrs G. Morrison, E. Anderson, W. Laidlaw, R. Bell, T. 
Hazel, T. A. Alston, R. Colthart, and J. Taylor. Special feature 
of Club — 25th January celebration. 

No. 57— THORNLIEBANK Burns Club. Instituted 1891. Federated 1893. 
Place and date of meeting. Club-room, occasional and anniversaries. 
President, Robert Hutton, North Park, Tliornliebank ; Vice- 
president, James Andrew, 10 Maxwell Terrace, Thornliebank ; 
Secretary, William Park, jun., Main Street, Thornliebank ; 15 
members of committee. Special features of Club — School 
children's competition, Scotch concert, annual outing, and Club 


No. 5S— KIRKCALDY Burns Club. Federated 1892. Secretaiy, John A. 
Miller, 13 Quality Street, Kirkcaldy. 

No. 59— GOUROCK Jolly Beggars Burns Club— Instituted 1893. Federated 
1893. Place of meeting. Gamble Institute, Gourock. President, 
ex-Provost James Adam, Parklea, Adam Street, Gourock ; Vice- 
president, R. B. Guthrie, Broomberry Terrace, Gourock ; Secretaty, 
R. M'Gechan, 3 Campsie Terrace, Cardwell Bay, Greenock; 
Treasurer, Joseph Wilson, 2 Tohn Street, Gourock. Committee — 
Wm. Wilson, Wm. Adam," E. Geddes, A. Sinclair, R. Cook, 
A. Davidson, J. M'Lean, J. Sinclair, A. Carmichael, and 
R. S. Simpson. Special features of Club— Club meetings, 
annual outings, ladies' nights, and encouragement of Scottish 

No. 60— WOLVERHAMPTON Burns Club. Federated 1S93. Secretaiy, 
C. G. Webster, Lichfield Street, Wolverhampton. 

No. 61— GLASGOW Glencairn Burns Club (dormant). Federated 1893. 

No. 62— CUPAR Burns Club. Instituted 1893. Federated 1893. President, 
Major W. Anstruther-Gray, M.P. , of Kilmany ; Vice-president, 
W. R. Osborne Pagan, W.S., Haymount, Cupar ; Secretary, 
David F. Esplin, Conner Office, Cupar : Treasurer, Geo. White, 
County Buildings, Cupar ; Chairman of Committee, Geo. Innes. 
Special features of Club — Literary and social. 

No. 63— GLASGOW Mossgiel Burns Club. Instituted 1893. Federated 
1893. Place and date of meeting, Mr Anderson's, 3 Cathcart 
Road, first Tuesday of each month, November to April, at 8 
o'clock. President, William Morrison, 86 Cumberland Street, 
S.S. ; Vice-President, John W. Black, iS Cathcart Road, S.S. ; 
Secretary, Robert Parker, 90 Forth Street, PoUokshields, 
Glasgow; Treasurer. I. Tinch, 15 Govanhill Street, Glasgow; 
7 members of committee. Special features of Club — The Club 
has for its objects the annual celebration of the Birthday 
of Robert Burns, occasional re-unions for the cultivation of 
social and intellectual intercourse amongst the members and 
friends, the encouragement of Scottish literature, and to have a 
summer trip to some of the places dear to the lovers of the Poet. 

No. 64— BEITH Burns Club. Federated 12th December, 1893. President, 
Wm. C. Wilson, Ingleside, Beith ; Secretary, Neil M 'Innes, 
Grahamsfield Place, Beith ; Treasurer, John Short, Main Street, 

No. 65— MUSSELBURGH Federated Burns Club. Instituted 1886. 
Federated 1894. Place and date of meeting. Central Assembly 
Rooms, 25th January, 1910. President, Councillor Will. 
Constable, 84 Inveresk Terrace, Musselburgh ; Vice-president, 

A. W. Millar, 2 Benlah, Musselburgh ; Secretary, Andrew B. 
Hall, 14 Links Place, Musselburgh ; Treasurer, Wm. Paterson, 33 
Eskside, Musselburgh. Committee— J. E. Brooks, R. S. Stewart, 
W. C. M'Gregor, W. B. Gardiner, Alex. Lauder, Jno. Gordon, 

B. M. Norval, W. Gowan, and W. A. Dudgeon. Special 
features of Club — Competitions for school children. Membership 
about 200. 

No. 66— CROSSGATES Burns Cluh. Federated 1894. Secretary— V-.o\>qxI 
Dall, Addison's Buildings, Crossgates. 


No. 67— CARLTON Burns Club. Instituted 1894. Federated 1894. Place 
and date of nieetinSi Sloan's Arcade Cafe, loS Argyle Street, 
Glasgow, first Tuesday monthly, October to April, 8 p.m. Presi- 
dent, David Davidson, 12 St. Andrew's Square, Glasgow ; \'ice- 
president, Robert M'Kenzie, Kefonner Office, Rutherglen ; 
Secretary, William J. Slraiton, 600 Dalmarnock Road, Glasgow ; 
Treasurer, Donald M'Neil, 21 University Street. Directors — 
Hailie Archibald Campbell, Geo. Stark, Thomas Cameron, James 
Ballantyne, James Tudhope, William Moffat, M.A. , Andrew 
Maclure, William Thomson, D. M. Duff, David Gilmour, William 
G. M'Leod, C. W. C. MacFarlane, Charles Taylor, James Robert- 
son, Robert Bowes, and J no. B. Gibson. Special features of Club 
— Literary and social. 

No. 68— SANDVFORD Burns Club. Instituted 1893. Federated 1894. 
Place and dale of meeting. Secretary's Office, 100 West Regent 
Street, Glasgow. President, James Michie, 175 Kent Road, 
Glasgow; Vice president, ex-Bailie Malcolm Campbell, J. P., 18 
Gordon Street, Glasgow ; Secretary and Treasurer, Andrew P. 
Hamilton, writer, 100 West Regent Street, Glasgow ; Treasurer, 
James P. M'Phie, 6 Bishop Street, Anderston, Glasgow. Special 
features of Club — Annual dinner and dance on 25th January ; also 
lectures and social and musical evenings in Grand Hotel, Glasgow. 

No. 69— DUNEDIN Burns Club. Federated 1894. President, R. Sandi- 
lands, Queen's Drive, Musselburgh, Dunedin, N.Z. 

No. 70-GLASGOW St. Rollox Jolly Beggars Burns Club (dormant). 
Federated 1894. 

No. 71— CARLISLE Burns Club. Instituted 25th January, 1889. Federated 
1895. Place and date of meeting. Crown and Mitre Hotel, 
Carlisle, monthly (Saturdays). President, William Reid, 8 Dykes 
Terrace, Stanwix, Carlisle ; Vice-presidents, Dr Bird, James 
Porleous, Rev. A. Davidson, F. Jones, T. Caton, D. Main, and 
G. C. Muir. Secretary, Walter A. Mather, Midland Bank 
Chambers, Carlisle. Special feature of Club — Literary. 

No. 72— PARTICK Burns Club— Federated 1895. Secretary, William Scott 
Wyllie, 149 St. Vincent Street, Glasgow. 

No. 73— LENZIE Burns Club (dormant). Federated 1S96. 

No. 74— GLASGOW Mauchline Society. Instituted 1888. Federated 1895. 
President, Rev. Wilson Baird, Mauchline. Secretary, William 
Campbell, 166 Buchanan Street, Glasgow ; Treasurer, Thomas 
Killin, 168 \Vest George Street, Glasgow. 

No. 75— KIRN Burns Club. Instituted 25th January, 1892. Federated loth 
February, 1896. Place and date of meeting, Queen's Hotel, Kirn, 
25th January, 1910. I'resident, Councillor William Dunbar, 
Kintillo Terrace, East Bay, Dunoon ; Vice-president, Andrew 
Gregor, Elm View, Clyde Street, Kirn ; Secretary, John Macnair, 
house agent, Kirn ; Treasurer, Councillor Wm. Lees, Ferny Crag, 
Kirn. Committee — Councillor Drummond, James Reid, Frederick 
Limbert, James M'Gibbon, R. Nicholson, and J. J. Ferguson. 
Special features of Club — Singing and reciting competitions for 
children, " Works of Burns." Debating and recreation branch, 
Monday every week. Anniversary supper in Queen's Hotel, Kirn, 
25th January. Annual excursion, first Thursday in September. 


No. 76 — BRECHIN Burns Club. Instituted January, 1S94. Federated 7th 
March, 1896. Place and dale of meeting, Mechanics' Hall, 25th 
January. President, William Anderson, Esq., 2 Airlie Street, 
Brechin ; Vice-president, Charles Thomson, Esq., Eastbank, 
Brechin : Secretary, F. C. Anderson, 10 St. Mary Street, Brechin. 

No. 77— PAISLEY Tannahill (Gleniffer) Burns Club. Instituted 1892. 
F'ederated 1S96. Secretary, Thomas Campbell, 19 Kilnside Road, 

No. 78— GLASGOW Ardgowan Burns Club (dormant). Instituted 1893. 
Federated 1896. Last Secretary, John Fairley, 160 Cathcart 
Street, Kingston, Glasgow. 

No. 79— CORSTORPHINE Burns Club. Instituted 1887. Federated 1896. 
Place and date of meeting, Public Hall, March, November, and 
25th January, at 8 p.m. President, Geo. W. T. M'Gowan, M.A., 
F.E.I.S., Schoolhouse, Corstorphine ; Vice-president, James E. 
Cowan, J. P., Bank of Scotland, Corstorphine; Secretary, Wm. 
Wilson, C.E., 7 Belgrave Place, Corstorphine ; Bard, Rev. James 
Fergusson, The Manse, Corstorphine. Committee of 8 members. 
Special features of Club— Two quarterly meetings, at which a 
paper is read, and afterwards social. Burns songs, &c. Anniver- 
sary festival, 25th January. 

No. 80— DUNOON Cowall Burns Club. Instituted 1896. Federated 1S96. 
Secretary, Walter Grieve, James Place, Dunoon. 

No. 81— CARSTAIRS Junction Burns Club. Instituted 1896. Federated 
1896. Secretary, William Neill, Burnsidc Cottages, Carstairs 

No. 82— ARBROATH Burns Club. Instituted 1888. Federated 1896. 
Secretary, Harry Lorimer, solicitor, 25 Market Place, Arbroath. 

No. 83— GLASGOW Co-operative Burns Club. Instituted 1896. Federated 
1S96. Place and date of meeting. National Burns Club, second 
Saturday of month. President, J. Jeffrey Flunter, 109 Bath 
Street ; Secretary, H. Kelly, 5 Greenlodge Terrace, Greenhcad, 
Gla.sgow. Special features of club — Social intercourse and 
literary discussion. 

No. 84— ABINGTON Burns Club (dormant). Federated 1896. 

No. 85— DUNFERMLINE United Burns Club. Instituted 1812. Federated 
1 2th November, 1896. Place and date of meeting. Royal Hotel, 
25th January. President, W. D. Imrie, Abbey Park Place ; Vice- 
president, Wm. Black, Charlestown, Dunfermline ; Secretary, P. 
Paterson, 23 Bruce Street, Dunfermline. Committee — A. T. 
Wilkie, Wm. Filzpatrick, Robert Macgregor, P. Donald, Andrew 
Lyon, J. C. Craig, Andrew Roxburgh, Robert Taylor, Bailie 
Stewart, and James Rodger. 

No. 86 -CUMNOCK Winsome Willie. Instituted 1S56. Federated 1896. 
Place of meeting, Hotel Royal, 7 p.m. President, Robert Hislop, 
Waterside Place ; Vice-president, Douglas M. Clark, Tower 
Street ; Secretary, Hugh Campbell, 43 Barrhill Road ; Treasurer, 
Gilbert M'Kissock, Kilnholm Place. 

No. 87— CAMPSIE Burns Club. Instituted 1890. Federated 1896. Place 
of meeting, Lennox Arms. Secretary, R. W. Robertson, Russell 
Place, Lennoxtown. 


No. 8S— GLASGOW Caledonian Burns Club. Instituted October, 1896. 
Federated 2nd March, 1897. Place of meeting, 25 Caledonia 
Road. Secretary, John Muirhead, c/o Drummond, 136 Roselea 
Drive, Glasgow. 

No. 89— SUNDERLAND Burns Club. Instituted January, 1S97. Federated 
April, 1S97. Place and date of meeting, Palatine Hotel, second 
and fourth Wednesday, October to March ; second Wednesday, 
April, May, and September —8 p.m. President, M. MacLennan, 
3J Ellerslie Terrace, Sunderland ; Vice-president, W. A. Culshaw, 
119 High Street, W., Sunderland; Secretary, M. Neilson, 14 
WhicUham Street, E., Sunderland ; Treasurer, A. W. Semple ; 
Librarian, G. Mackay ; Auditor, W. P. Eastwood ; Pianist, C. 
Peirie : Hon. Piper, G. Murray. Committee — W. \\. Turner, 
|. F. Crooks, D. Condie, A. Gray, and W. P. Eastwood. Special 
features of Club — Anniversary dinner ; concert ; visitation 
of clubs ; papers and lectures ; interest in the well-being of Scots- 
men in and around Sunderland. Visitors cordially welcomed. 

j^o 90— GARELOCITIlEAD Burns Club. Instituted 1885. Federated 
2 1 St May, 1897. Place of meeting, Garelochhead Hotel. Presi- 
dent, Rev. John Patterson, The Manse, Garelochhead ; Vice- 
president, David Stark, Argyle Cottage, Garelochhead ; Secretary, 
John Douglas, Dahlandhui, Garelochhead. 

No. 91 — SHETTLESTON Burns Club. Instituted 1898. Federated 1898. 
Place of meeting, 284 Eastmuir, Shettleston. l-'resident, 
County Councillor W. J. Grant, Beechwood, Shettleston ; Vice- 
President, R. M. Miliholm. 2 Sommerville Place, Glasgow ; 
Secretary, James Mair, 284 Eastmuir, Shettleston. Committee — 
Thomas Deans, H. V. Reid, G. Jones, Thomas Barrie, W. Lawson, 
II. Mair, and W. W. Stevenson. Special features of Club — To 
encourage a taste for Scottish literature, and to celebrate the 
memory of our National Bard. 

jijo. 92 KILBOWIE Jolly Beggars Burns Clubs. Instituted August, 

1897. Federated .September, 1897. Place and time of meeting. 
Cross Restaurant, Clydebank, at 7.30 p.m. President, Alexander 
M 'Donald, 53 Montrose Street, Kilbowie ; Vice-President, Wm. 
Paterson, 2 Livingstone Street, Clydebank ; Secretary, Leonard 
Frew, 38 Second Avenue, Kilbowie. Committee— Peter Dala- 
court (Chairman), J. Agnew, Wm. Allan, D. M 'Williams, T. 
Waters, D. J. Clark, A. Davidson, P. Crawley, and J. Seright. 
Special features of Club — Study of the Poet's Works and other 

jyo. 93— CLYDEBANK Burns Club (dormant). Federated 1897. 

No. 94— U I'll ALL Tarn o" Shanter Burns Club. Federated 1897. 

No. 95— BOLTON Burns Club. Instituted 6th September, 1881. Federated 
1897. Secretary, Chas. H. Mallison, Oaklands, Seymour Road, 

^'o. 96— JEDBURGH Burns Club. Instituted 1S69. Federated 1897. 
Secretary, Peter Telfer, 58 Castlegatc, Jedburgh. 

]Vo. 97— BELLFIELD Burns Club. Instituted 1895. Federated 1898. Place 
and date of meeting, Bellfield Tavern, Wellbeck Street, first Friday 
of month, at 8 p.m. President, James Eccles, 14 Kirktonholm 


Street, Kilmarnock ; Vice-president, Jolin Borland, Megland, St. 
Andrew's Terr., Kilmarnock; Secretary, Robt. Ritchie, ii Wellbeck 
Street, Kilmarnock ; Treasurer, Thomas Neilson, Paxton Street, 
Kilmarnock. Committee— Wm. Brown, Alex, Craiij, Alex. 
Rodj^er, Jas. Neilson, and Wm. Goudie. Special features of Club — 
Social intercourse amonc;st the members and kindred Clubs ; 
celebration of the Poet's birth ; annual trip in the month of May ; 
meetings for the reading of literary papers relative to the life and 
works of Burns, and kindred subjects. 

No. 98— LANARK Burns Club. Instituted 1891. Federated 17th January, 
1S98. Place and date of meeting, Market Hotel, quarterly meet- 
ings. President, Thomas Lithgow, Furrowflatt ; Vice-president, 
William Brown, Rubislaw ; Secretary, John Ross, Caledonian 
House, Lanark ; Treasurer, R. Martin, Wellgate. Committee — 
Messrs A. Neilson, C. Downie, J. Blyth, Wm. M'Kenzie, and W. 
Fergus. Special feature of Club — Burns competitions to beheld 
annually amongst the children attending schools. 53 members. 

No. 99— BARLINNIE Burns Club. Instituted 25th January, 1893. 
Federated 20th January, 1898. Place of meeting, Barlinnie: 
President, James Cram, Esq., Governor H.M. Prison, Barlinnie, 
Glasgow; Vice-president, Dr W. I. II. Sinclair, M.B.C.M., H.M. 
Prison, Barlinnie, Glasgow; Secretary, Alexander Mackay, H.M. 
Prison, Barlinnie, Glasgow ; Chaplain, Rev. Andrew Miller, M.A., 
H.M. Prison, Barlinnie. Committee — Alex. Campbell, Robert 
Sutherland, James M'Quaker, Wm. Russell, and D. S. Robertson. 

No. 100— HAMILTON Mossgiel Burns Club. Instituted 1892. Federated 
4th April, 1898. Place and date of meeting. Royal Hotel, first 
Thursday in the month, 8. 15 p.m. President, John D. Liglitbody ; 
Vice-president, George Thorpe; Secretary, Archd. Clark, jun., 
Quarry Street, Hamilton ; Treasurer, Wm. Hamilton. Committee 
Wm. Hindshaw, John Campbell, Wm. Stewart, John Law, 
and Rudolph Gall. 

No. loi — MOTHERWELL Workmen's Burns Club. Federated 1898. 

Secretary, John King, 128 Muir Street, Motherwell. 
No. 102-CARLISLE Border Burns Club (dormant). lustituted 1898. 

Last Secretary, Andrew Rafell, 36 London Road, Carlisle. 

No. IG3-COALBURN Burns Club. Federated 1898. Secretary, John 
Woodburn, Coalburn Inn, Coalburn. 

No. 104 -DUMFRIES Oak Burns Club. Federated 1898. Secretary, 
Thomas Haining, jun., 26 Swan's Vennel, Dumfries. 

No. 105— RUTHERGLEN Cronies Burns Club. Instituted 1896. P'ederated 
1898. Place and date of meeting, Burnhill Rest, Rutherglen, 
last Friday of month. President, John Robb, Newfield House, 
Rutherglen : Vice-president, Walter Sharp, Millcroft, Rutherglen; 
Secretary, A. Crawford Alston, 2 Wardlaw Drive, Rutherglen ; 
Treasurer, Wm. Morrison, Sheriff Park Terrace, Rutherglen. 
Special features of the Club— For the promotion of the Burns 

No. 106— BRO.KBURN Rosebery Burns Club. Federated 189S. Secretary, 
Joseph Millar, Ashfield Buildings, Uphall. 

No. 107— GLASGOW Hutchesontown Burns Club (dormant). Federated 

No. loS-KASr CALDER ami District Jolly Hc---ats Hums Club. Instituted 
1S97. Federated 1899. I'liice and lime olnieeling, Grapes Inn, East 
Calder, at 8 o'clocU. Tresident, Wni. Young, newsagent, East 
Calder ; \'ice-presidenl, James Millar, Limekilns, East Calder ; 
Secretary, George Vr<ung, Limefield Cottage, East Calder ; 
Treasurer, James Robertson. Special features of Club — To study 
Burns and his works. 

No. 109— GLASGOW Caledonia Burns Club. Instituted September, 1898. 
Federated 24th March, 1S99. Secretary, William Galloway, 77 
Preston Street, Govanhill, Glasgow. 

No. no— CAMBUSLANG Burns Club. Instituted 1850. Federated 1898. 
Secretary, James Robertson, Monkcastle Drive, Cambuslang. 

No. Ill— SOUTH EDINBURGH Burns Club. Instituted 1879. Federated 
1899. Secretary, John S. T. Walker, I Summerbank, Edinburgh. 

No. 112— DUMFRIES Burns Ilowfif Club. Instituted 1889. Federated 
loth August, 1899. Place and date of meeting, Globe Hotel, 
monthly. Hon. President, T. Laidlaw, Garibaldi Place, St. 
Michael Street ; President, James Bell, grocer, St. Michael Street ; 
Vice-president, Edward Campbell, Wallace Street ; Secretary, 
Jno. Connor, 61 St. Michael Street, Dumfries ; Treasurer, T. 
Robertson, Dockhead, Dumfries. Committee — T. Craig, T. 
Houston, T. Batey, T. Draffan, J. Maxwell, A. Cochrane, t. 
Robertson, R. Kerr, and P. Smith. 

No. n3-VALE OF LEVEN Glencairn Burns Club. Instituted 1897. 
Federated 1899. Place and date of meeting, Albert Hotel, Alex- 
andria, last Saturday of each month at 7.30. Hon. president, 
William While, 44 Bridge Street, Alexandria ; President, Alex. 
Campbell, Hillbank, Bowhill ; Vice-president, fames M'Innes, 
Napierston Terrace, Jamesto^vn ; Secretary, Daniel M'Millan. 38 
Wilson Street, Alexandria, X. B. ; Treasurer, Wm. Smith, Bridge 
Square, Alexandria, (vommiilee — John M'Gowan, Thomas Peters, 
Daniel M'Innes, and Walter Clark. Special features of Club — 
Celebration of Poet's birth ; summer ouling ; and occasionally 
short papers read by members. 

No. 114— 15R0DICK Burns Club. Instituied 1899. Federated 1900. 
Secretary, ]ohn S. Currie, Brodick. 

No. 115— KIPPEX and District Burns Club. Instituted 21st July, 1896. 
Federated 20ih January, 1900. Place of meeting, Gillespie 
Hall. Hon. President, Stephen Mitchell, jun., Boquhan, Kippen 
Station ; President, Thomas Syme, Stralhview ; Vice-president, 
Andrew Main, Strewie Bank, Kippen Station ; Secretary, 
Archibald M'Diarmid, Woodside, Kippen Station. Conmiittee — 
R. Jackson, J. M'Lean, S. Thomson, Alex. M'Diarmid, D. 
M'Diarmid, J. .M. Syme, G. M'Queen, P. Watson, A. Welsh, J. 
M'Ewen, R. Leckie, and T. Inglis. .Special features of Club — -To 
promote a knowledge of the life and works of Burns and establish 
a fund for the cultivation and learning of the works of Burns and 
Scottish literature among our school children, and having competi- 
tions in which handsome prizes are given. 

No. 116— GREENLOANING Burns Club. Instituted 1889. Federated 
1900. Place and dale of meeting, Greenloaning Inn, 25lh 
January, at 7.30 p.m. President, Thomas Stewart, The Braes, 


Greenloaning, Braco ; Vice-president, Francis Sands, Greenloan- 
ing, Braco ; Secretary, James Bayne, Kinbuck, Dunblane. 
Committee — G. Robertson, I. M'Naughtbn, W. Taylor, J. 
Couper, and T- M'llldowie. 

:No. 117— GLASGOW Southern Burns Club (dormant). Instituted 1S99. 
Federated 1900. 

JSIo. 118— GLASGOW Albany Burns Club. Listituted 1900. Federated 
1900. Place and date of meeting, Trades' House Restaurant, 89 
Glassford Street, Glasgow, first Wednesday each month from 
October till March, at 7.30 p.m. President, John A. Headrick, 
340 Maxwell Road, Pollokshields, Glasgow ; Vice-president, 
James Raeside, 125 North John Street, Glasgow ; Secretary, 
Robert Carmichael, 89 Elderslie Street, Sandyford, Glasgow ; 
Treasurer, Alexander Gray, 67 Great Hamilton Street, Glasgow ; 
Hon. President, Professor John Glaister, M.D Directors — G. H. 
Gillies, R. K. Philson, John Grant, R. D. Donaldson, Andrew 
Black, R.S.W., and John R. Mirrlees ; Past Presidents, Robert 
Goodall, J. Wilson Bain, James Taylor, Thomas Kennedy, John 
Brown, and N. Macwhannell. Special features of the Club — 
Lectures and harmony, and to cultivate a knowledge of the Works 
of Burns among school children, in connection with which a com- 
petition is held yearly and medals and volumes given to the 
successful competitors. Membership limited to 150. 

No. 119— BONHILL Burns Club. Instituted 1900. Federated 1900. 
Secretary, George Moir, 75 Dillichip Loan, Bonhill. 

No. 120 — BRISTOL Caledonian Society. Instituted 1820. Federated 
1900. President, Alderman II. W. Twigg, T-P-, Victoria Street ; 
Secretary, h. J. Gardner, 4 St. Stephen's Chambers, Bristol. 
Special features of Club —Social ; benevolent ; literary. 

No. 121 -HAMILTON Junior Burns Club. Instituted September, 1S86. 
Federated April, 1901. Place of meeting, Robert Bell's, Union 
Street, Hamilton. President, John M'Millan, Chapel Street, 
Hamilton ; Vice-president, (ames Brown, 61 Quarry Street, 
Hamilton ; Secretary, William Wilson, 27 Duke Street, Hamilton ; 
Treasurer, John Stewart ; Minute Secretary, A. Thomson ; 
Steward, J. Gourlay. Committee— A. Dickson, A. Drummond, 
and R. Smith. Special features of Club — Reading of essays on 
various subjects, concerts, competitions, summer rambles, and 
social evenings. 

No. 122— DARNCONNER Aird's Moss Burns Club. Instituted 1900. Fede- 
rated 4th November, 1 901. Place of meeting, Sorn Greyhound 
Inn. President, Hugh Sloan, Walker Row, via Auchinleck ; 
Vice-President, Andrew Neil, 90 Darnconner, via Auchinleck ; 
Secretary, Andrew Stevenson, Glenlogan, Mauchline, Ayrshire. 
Committee — James Naismith, Darnconner ; John Morton, Auchin- 
leck ; Hugh Reynolds, Glenlogan. Special features of Club — To 
foster and encourage an interest in the works of our National Bard. 

No. 123— AUCHINLECK Boswell Burns Club. Instituted 25th January, 
1900. Federated lOth Deceml^er, 1901. Place and date of meet- 
ing, Boswell Arms, last Saturday of every month, at 7 p.m. 
Secretary, Wm. Hall, High House, Auchinleck. 

No. 124— EDINBURGH Ninety Burns Club. Instiuted 1890. Federated 
1892. ^Place and date of meeting, various. President, R. D. 


Giant M'Laien, 40 Mayfield Road ; Vice-presidfent, Robert Burns 
Brown, 30 Barony Street ; Sciretary, G. \V. Taylor, 37 George 4th 
Bridsje, Edinburgh ; Treasurer, John Munro, 85 Shandwick Place, 
Edinburgh. Commillee — l)r Osier, J. Armstrong, John Currie, 
James Hewat, and A. Orrock. Special features of Club — Annual 
dinner ; dance ; and summer outing. 

No. 125— BLACKBURN-ON-ALMOND Rabbie Hums Club. Instituted 
1900. Federated 1902. Place and date of meeting. Almond Inn, 
last Friday of month from October to April. President, Alex. 
Gardner, Knowehead, Blackburn, Bathgate; Vice-president, David 
Anderson, Douglas Buildings, l^lackburn, Bathgate ; Secretary, 
Samuel Bostock, Margaret's Cottages, Blackburn, Bathgate ; 
Treasurer, Joseph Fleming, Blackburn, Bathgate ; Bard, David 
Anderson. Committee — Thomas Wallace, Peier Brunlin, James 
Robb, Andrew Stein, and Robert Carlyle. Special features of 
Club — Annual supper on 25th January ; social last Friday in March, 
with singing and reciting competitions on Hurns's works for school 

No. I2b— FALKIRK Burns Ciub. Instituted 1S66. Federated 1902. Place 
and date of meeting, Mathieson's Rooms, January 25th, also first 
Thursdays of April and November. President, Dr Dugald 
Mitchell, J. P., Dunoran, Camelon ; Vice-presidents, Sheriff 
Moffat, Falkirk, and Provost Christie, Falkirk ; Secretary, H. B. 
Watson, Broompark, Falkirk ; Treasurer, R. S. Aitchison, 
solicitor. Committee — Major F. D. Fergusson, R. H. Lochhead, 
J. P., I). P. Black, F. Johnston, J. P., T. C. Wade, M.A., LL.B. 

No. 127— COWDENBEATH Haggis Burns Club. Instituted 1903, 
Federated 7th November, 1903. Place and date of meeting, 
Foulford Rooms, every alternate Tuesday, at 7 p.m. President, 
William Miller, Glenview, Foulford Road, Cowdenbeath ; Vice- 
presidents, John Bain, Hall Street ; Sam. White, c/o John Bain, 
Hall Street ; Secretary, James Petrie Glen, 16 Foulford Road, 
Cowdenbeath. Committee — Messrs D. Jamieson, T. Lark, H. 
Philip, and A. Campbell. 

No. 128— GLENCAIRN Burns Club, Cowdenbeath. Instituted 1898. 
Federated 14th May, 1903. Place and date of meeting, Raith 
Arms Inn, at 7 p.m. on Thursdays. President, David Smith, 89 
Broad Street, Cowdenbeath ; Vice-president, Peter White, 
Arther's Place, Cowdenbeath ; Secretary, Win. Breingan, Raith 
Arms Inn, Cowdenbeath ; Treasurer, Thomas P^erguson. Com- 
mittee — Robert Geddes, Alexander Bonthrone, John Banks, Peter 
Falconer, and Richard Innes. Special features of the Club — To 
keep alive the memory of Burns and the promotion of social and 
friendly intercourse amongst the members and friends. 

No. 129— GORBALS Burns Club. Instituted 1902. Federated nth Tune, 
1903. President, Bailie Archibald Campbell, Albert Drive, 
PoUokshields ; Vice-president, James Milligan, 2 South Portland 
Street ; Seci-elary, Andrew Aitken, solicitor, 212 Bath Street, 
Glasgow. Special feature of Club — To foster the study of Burns's 

No. 130— ROW Burns Club. Instituted 6th February, 1902. Federated 
1903. Place and date of meeting, Colquhoun Arms, January, June, 
and October, at 8 p.m. President, Major John M'Farlane, i 
West Clyde, Helensburgh ; Vice-presidents, N. M. M'Leod, 


Fiunary, Shandon ; Capt. G. S. Deverell, R.N. , Clyde Training 
Ship Empress ; Secretary, Robert Sloan, Greenside Cottage, Row ; 
Treasurer, G. Walker, Laggray Lodge. Row. Special feature of 
Club — Social intercourse amongst its members. 
No. 131— NOTTINGHAM Scottish Association. Instituted October, 1902. 
Federated November, 1903. Place and date of meeting. Mechanics' 
Institution, Room 75, bi-monthly, Tuesdays, October to March. 
President, Dr W. Hunter, Bridgeway House, Arkwright Street, 
Nottingham ; Vice-presidents, J. Crawford, The Old Rectory, 
Bulwell, and G. A. Mitchell, 275 Woodborough Road, Notting- 
ham ; Secretary, J. G. Simpson, loi Portland Road, Nottingham ; 
Treasurer, G. E. Bain, The Capital and Counties Bank, Ltd., 
Market Place, Nottingham ; Auditors, T. H. Inglis and 
A. M'Gougan. Council — J. O. Armour, J. Chapman, J. Currie, 
Dr Thomson Henderson, iVI. J. Kay, D. Macadie, D. Macgregor, 
]. M'Meeking, E. Merson, Dr f- Millar, N. C. Stewart, Dr 
j. Watson, A. C. Watt, A. VV. White. Special feature of Club- 
Social intercourse among members. 

No. 132-— RICCARTON Kirkstyle Burns Club. Instituted January, 1904. 
Federated i6tli November, 1904. Secretary, Arch. Young, 88 
Campbell Street, Riccarton, Kilmarnock. 

No. 133— NEWARTHILL Burns Club. Instituted 26th September, 1903. 
Federated 28th March, 1904. Place and date of meeting, Miss 
Janet Wyper's, last Saturday every month. President, John 
Henshaw, North Road,' Newarthill, Motherwell ; Vice-president, 
George Cook, Young's Land, Newarthill, Motherwell ; Secretary, 
William Moore, Braehead Place, Newarthill, Motherwell ; 
Treasurer, George Cook. Committee— T. Crombie. J. Lafiferty, 
A. M 'Given, and H. Moore. Special feature of the Club — To 
promote social intercourse among its members by means of songs, 
recitations, essays, >!s:c. 

No. 134— "THE HERON" Burns Club, Duntocher. Instituted iSth Nov., 
1897. Federated 7th April, 1904. Secretary, R. R. Chalmers, 
Main Street, Duntocher. 

No. 135 — I'ARTICK Western Burns Club. Instituted 1903. Federated 

1904. Place of meeting, Windsor Restaurant, Partick. President, 

Hugh M'Coll ; Vice-president, Arch. Ferguson ; Secretary, Jas. 

Gilchrist, 22 Apsley Street, Partick ; Treasurer, James Webster. 

Committee — M. Bertram, J. A. Biggs, D. Ferguson, I. Hislop, 

F. Jones, J. M'Barnet, J. L. M'Cay, B. C. M'Donald, D. 

M'Neish, D. Menzies, A. Mouat, Jas. Newall, Jno. Roy, W. 

A. Robertson, D. Simpson, Jno. E. Shaw, J. D. Smith, A. A. 

Stewart, Jno. Stewart, E. T(iugh, and Jas. Watson, jr. Pianist, 

W. Kirkland, L.R.A.M. 
No. 136 -HAMILTON Royal Oak Burns Club Instituted 1898. Federated 

6lh June, 1904. Secretary, Robert Browulie, 7 Downie Street, 

Lcjwwaters, Hamilton. 
No. 137— Il'SWICH Burns Club. Instituted 12th Feb., 1902. Federated 

1st November, 1904. Place and dale of meeting, Fox Hotel, 

Ipswich, first Tuesday of every month, at 8 p.m. President, 

Wm. Morrison ; Vice-president, James Campbell ; Secretary, S. 

Dobbin, Fox Hotel, Brook Street, Ipswich. 
No. 138— CLELAND Burns Club. Instituted 19th October, 1904. Federated 

22nd November, 1904. Secretary, Robert M'Millan, Hornshill, 



No. 139— NATIONAL Burns Club (Limiled), Glasgow. Instituted 1904, 
Federated 1904. Place of meeting, Club Rooms, 93 Douglas 
Street. President, John Carmichael, 27 Blythswood Drive ; 
Vice-president, Rev. James Forrest, M.A., 8 Holland Place; 
Secretary and Treasurer, Joseph Martin, solicitor, 163 West 
George Street. Glasgow. Special features of the Club — The pro- 
motion of the study of Burns's works and Scottish literature 
generally ; the collection of books, prints, and pamphlets con- 
nected therewith ; and social intercourse, mutual helpfulness, 
mental and moral improvement, and rational recreation. 

No. 140— POLLOKSHAWS Burns Club. Instituted 1865. Federated 
1905. Place of meeting, Burgh Halls, Pollokshaws. President, 
County Councillor Andrew M 'Galium, 35 Harriet Street y 
\'icepresident, George C. Mearns, Auldfield Place ; Secretary, 
James Milne, Burgh Halls, Pollokshaws. 

No. 141— STONEHOUSE Burns Club. Instituted 1904. Federated 1905. 
I'lace of meeting, Buck's Head Inn. Secretary, James Graham, 
58 New Street, Stonehouse. 

No. 142— BONNYBRIDGE Burns Club. Instituted loth January, 1905. 
Federated 22nd February, 1905. Secretary, John Towers, Allan- 
hill Cottage, Bonnybridge. 

No. 143 — AIRDRIE Gateside Burns Club. Instituted 6th November, 1904. 
Federated 1st May, 1905. Secretary, Alex. W. Ritchie, Laurel 
Bank, Queen Victoria Street, Airdrie. 

No. 144— LARBERT and STENHOUSEMUIR Temperance Burns Club. 
Instituted 1904. Federated 1905. Secretary, John Richardson, 
Annslea, South Broomage, Larbert. 

No. 145— GL.\SGOW Central Burns Club and Literary Institute, Limited. 
Instituted 1905. Federated August, 1905, Place of meeting. 42 
Argyle Street. Secretary, W. D. M'Laren, 42 Argyle Street, 

No. 146 — DUBLIN Burns Club. Instituted IQ05. Federated 1905. Patron, 
His Excellency The Earl of Aberdeen, K.P., K.T., Lord 
Lieutenant of Ireland ; President, Thomas A. Stoddart, 16 
Ncrlhumberland Road ; Vice-president, John Beatty, 2 Harry 
Street ; Seoeiarij, John Farquhar, 21 Windsor Avenue, Fairview, 
Dublin; Treasurer, Alex. Lyon, ill Botanic Road, Glasnevin ; 
Auditors, Messrs John Biggar and J. 15. Taylor. 

No. 147— STONEHOUSE Haggis Burns Club. Federated 28th October, 
1905. Secretaiy, R. Whitelaw, 22Camnethan Street, Stonehouse. 

No. 148— GREENOCK Cronies Burns Club. Instituted January, 1899. 
Federated 9th November, 1905. Place of meeting, Artisans' Hall, 
14 Sugarhouse Lane ; President, William Brand, 36 West 
.Stewart Street : Vice-president, Angus Mitchell, West Burn 
Street ; Secretary, Hugh Cammack, 28 Lynedoch Street, Gree- 
nock ; Treasurer, William Burnside, 25 Bruce Street. Special 
features of Club — To cherish the name of Robert Burns and foster 
a love for his writings, and generally to promote good-fellowship. 

No. 149— ELGIN Burns Club. Resuscitated 1900. Federated 1905. 
President, J. W^ Brodie-Innes of Milton- Brodie, Elginshire ; 
Vice-presidtnt, W. W. M'Kechnie, H.M.I..S., Elgin; Secretary, 


John Foster, Sheriff-Clerk of Elginshire ; Treasurer, John B. 
iMair, Chief Constable, Elgin. These with a Committee manage 
the Club. 

No. 150— KILMARNOCK Jolly Beggars Barns Club. Instituted 1905. 
Federated 1905. Place and date of meeting, " Wee Thack," 
Grange Street, first Monday of each month. Hon. Presidents, 
Arch. Laird, Alex. Kerr, and Robert Orr ; President, Andrew 
Sinclair, P.C, 65 M'Lelland Drive ; Vice-president, James Queay, 
10 Gibson Street ; Secieiary, R. J. Green, 58 Park Street ; 
Treasurer, Samuel Neil, The Grange. Special features of the 
Club— To celebrate the Anniversary of the Poet's birthday; 
rambles through the land of Barns from May till August 
inclusive ; and lectures during the months of September to April 

No. 151— OLD KILPATRICK Burns Club. Instituted 20th January, 1896. 
Tederated 20th January, 1906. Place and date of meeting, Gentles 
Hall, every month, at 8 p.m. President, Thomas Struthers, 
Station House, Old Kilpatrick ; Vice-president, Thos. Kempton, 
Bankside, Old Kilpatrick ; Secretary, Robert Smith, Maryville, 
Old Kilpatrick ; Treasurer, Mr John Brock, Dalnotter Terrace, 
Old Kilpatrick. Committee — James Paton, James Retson, James 
M'Carlie, Alex. Mann, James Heron, Wm. Gallacher, Robert 
Newlands, and John Struthers Special features of the Club — A 
course of lectures ; children's competition, same as last winter, to 
be held in Gavinburn Public School, Old Kilpatrick, at the end of 
1910, for boys and girls^four stages, from 6 to 16 years of age. 

No. J52^HAMILTON Burns Club. Instituted 1877. Federated 1906. 
Place and date of meeting. Commercial Plotel, monthly during 
winter. Secretary, Peter Anderson, Rowanlea, Hamilton. 

No, 153--GLASGOW Scottish Burns Club. Instituted January, 1904. 
Federated 27th February, 1906. Place and dale of meeting, 
Waddell's Rooms, 60 Union Street, Glasgow, first Thursday of 
month. President, John Wilson, 83 Jamaica Street, Glasgow ; 
Vice-presidents, Dr James Devon, 6 Cathedral Square, Glasgow, 
and .Mr J. S. Gilchrist, 20 Marlborough Gardens, Old Cathcart ; 
Secretary, W. Robertson Wilson, 6 Ralston Drive, Ibrox, 
Glasgow ; Treasurer, George A. Duncan, 9 Wendover Crescent, 
Mount Florida. Special features of the Club — Lectures on Burns, 
also songs of the Bard and kindred subjects. 

No. 154— JOHANNESBURG Burns Club. Instituted 1900. Federated 
1906. Secretary, Richard Rusk, solicitor. Natal Bank Buildings, 
Market Square, Johannesburg. 

No. 155— EAST STIRLINGSHIRE Burns Club. Instituted 25th January, 
1903. Federated 1st September, 1906. Place and date of meet- 
ing, Cross Roads Inn, Bainsford, quarterly. President, John 
Duncan Silcock, 13 Gordon Terrace, Carron Road, P'alkirk ; Vice- 
president, William Galliraith, 85 M'Callum Terrace, Carron Road, 
Falkirk; Secretary, Alexander Glen, 12 Gordon Terrace, Carron 
Road, Falkirk ; Treasurer, James M 'Williams. Committee — 
John Dow, James Adams, George Taylor, Robert C. Young, 
and Alexarder Cruickshanks. Special features of Club— To foster 
and maintain an intimate and thorough knowledge of the life and 
works of Burns; to celebrate the anniversary of his birth in supper, 
song, and sentiment ; and to propagate and encourage a kindly, 
social, anil brotherly feeling one towards an(Jtlier. 


No. 156-NKWCASTLE and TVNESIDE Burns Club. Instituted 1864. 
Federated 4th October, 1906. I'lace of meetinij, Central Exchange 
Hotel. President, Dr R. Anderson, 4 Gladstone Terrace, 
Gateshead ; Vice-president, I). N. Brims, Springbank, lienwell ; 
Secretary, W. H. Blackstock, 22 Nelson Street, Newcastle-on- 
Tyne ; Treasurer, William Mawvell, 80 Osborne Koad, Newcastle- 
on-Tyne. Special features of Club— Keepini; m lourh with Burns 
and fostering the spirit " Shall brithers be for a' tliat." 

No. 157— BAILLIESTON CALEDONIAN Burns Club. Instituted 1901. 
Federated sih October, 1905. Place and date of meeting, Free 
Gardeners" Hall, .Main Sueet, first Tuesday of each month. 
President, Jas. Adams, 68a Main Street, Baillieslon ; Vice- 
president, [as. Russell, 152 Main Street, Bailliesion. Secre- 
tary, Charles Paterson, 37 Muirside Road, Baillieston ; Treasurer, 
Peter Greenshields. Committee— G. Tait, T. VVaugh, T. Glen, 
J. Young, T. Reid, and D. Macfarlane. Special ieatures of the 
Club — To encourage the cultivation of a belter knowledge in this 
place of Robert Burns and his Works, and to celebrate the 
anniversary of his birth in supper, song, and sentiment. 

No. 158- DARLINGTON Burns Association, Instituted 8th March, 1906. 
Federated i8th October, 1906. Place and date of meeting. 
Temperance Institute, average monthly during winter, no fixed 
night. President, Philip Wood, M.A., Grammar School, Darling- 
ton; Vice-presidents, Wm. Foster, J. P., Elmbank ; John 
Henderson, Albert Road Schools ; and John M. Gait, 4 West 
Park Road, Woodlands ; Secretary, R. M. Liddell, 37 Langholm 
Crescent. Special features of the Club — Series of lectures, to 
which friends (including ladies) are invited ; annual Scottish 
concert ; annual social gathering ; Anniversary dinner. 

No. 169 — WALKER (Newcaslle-on-Tyne) Burns Club. Federated Nov. nth, 
1906. President, John M'Kay, 679 Welbeck Road, Walker-on- 
Tyne. Secretary, Hy. F. Caldwell, 371 Welbeck Road, Walker- 
on-Tyne ; Treasurer, R. M'Rory, 25 Eastburn Gardens, Walker- 
on-Tyne. Special features of Club— To iJroinote social intercourse 
among its members by means of songs, recitations, essays, lectures, 
Scotch concerts, annual supper ; summer months, bowling compe- 
titions, etc. 

No. 160— WHITBURN Burns Club. Instituted 23td February, 1906. 
Federated November, 1906. Secretary, Allan Johnston, Lea 
.Street, Whitburn. 

No. 161 -CHARLESTON Burns Club, Paisley. Instituted 1905. Federated 
1906. Place and time of meeting, 17 Stevenson Street, at 8.30 
p.m. President, Joseph T. Howard, Hazclbank, Elderslie ; Vice- 
presidents. James Welsh, Ardenlea, Elderslie, and Alex. C. Millar, 
10 Hillview, Paisley ; Secretary, Robert Fleming, Nevvhall Villas, 
Glenfield, Paisley. Committee — W. A. Nelson, Alex. Smith, 
James Hamilton, Hugh Black, and Hugh Young. Special 
features of Club —To propagate the knowledge of Burns's writings 
in the district. 

No. 162— PLY.MOUTH and District Caledonian Society Burns Club. 
Instituted 8th February, 1898. Federated, 8th March, 1907. 
Place and date of meeting. Oddfellows' Hall, as arranged. 
President, James Thain, " Bon Accord,"' II Craven Avenue, 
Plymouth ; Vice-president, James Common, 8 Lockyer Road, 


Mannamead, Plymouth. Secretary, P. Robertson, 6 Norman 
Avenue, Devonport. Committee — Wm. Johnston, J- Masson, 
J. Stewart Hamihon, J- Lindsay, P. PI. • Allan, G.' II. Clark, 
and G. Allan. Special features of the Club— Social intercourse 
among the members, and the celebration of Robert Burns's 

No. 163— GATESHEAD and District Caledonian Society. Instituted 1887. 
Federated 1907. Place and date of meeting. Royal Hotel, first 
Thursday of the month. President, Mr T. Hetherington, 3 St. 
Edmund Place; Vice-president, A. Bennett, 40 Rothbury Terrace, 
Heaton, Newcastle ; Secretary, D. Bain, 13 Denmark Street, 
Gateshead. Committee— T. Thompson, D. Morrison, and G. 

No. 164— KINNING PARK Burns Club. Instituted 1881. Federated 1907. 
Place and date of meeting. Masonic Hall, Rutland Crescent, 
second Wednesday of month. President, William Dickie, 8 
Walmer Terrace, Ibrox ; Vice-president, John M'Lachlan, 104 
Middleton Street, Ibrox ; Secretary, Thomas Deans, 7 Broomhall 
Street, Kinning Park. Committee— Thomas Taylor, R. S. 
Gordon, Neil Downie, Wm. C. Robertson, Wm. Walker, James 
Miller, James Mason, and Wm. Lockerbie. Special features of 
Club — Competition amongst school children for singing and recit- 
ing works of Scottish poets; lectures during the year on Scottish 
literature ; holding of Burns's natal day ; and social intercourse 
amongst members. 

No. 165— WALLSEND Burns Club. Federated 18th April, 1907. Place 
and date of meeting, Station Hotel, third Wednesday of each 
month, at 7.30 p.m. President, Jno. Macdonald, 10 Laburnum 
Avenue ; Vice-president, Jno. Campbell, 9 Laburnum Avenue ; 
Secretaiy, Robert Johnson, 31 Curzon Road ; Treasurer, Charles 
Scott. 98 Laburnum Avenue. Special features of Club — To 
associate Scotsmen and all admirers of Burns ; to cultivate social 
and intellectunl intercourse and the preservation of Scottish songs, 
manners, customs, and affairs, and other kindred purposes among 
the members and friends. 

Instituted November, 1906. Federated September, 1907. Place 
and date of meeting, Devonport Hotel, fortniglitly meetings 
(Wednesdays). President, Alderman Forbes, Old Ormesby, near 
Middlesbrough ; Vice-president, Councillor Crombie, Linthorpe, 
Middlesbrough. Secretary, A. Wallace, 6 Royal Exchange, 
Middlesbrough; Treasurer, J. Wilson; Chairman of committee, 
.A. Rutherford. Special features of Club — Leciures, concerts, &c. 

No. 167— BIRMINGHAM Burns Club. Instiiuled I3ih January, 1906. 
Federated I3ih November, 1907. Place r>f meeting, Imperial 
Hole], Temple Street. President, Thomas Martin Shjan, 15 
Weatheroak Road, Sparkhill ; Vice-presidents, Donald MTntosh, 
31 City Arcade, and Dr Esslemont, i Deritend ; Secretary, Wm. 
Anderson, 3, 4, and 5 Wrottesley Street, Birmingham; Hon. 
Assistant Secretary, D. B. Gray. 11 Dean Road, Erdington ; 
Hon. Treasurer, R. M'Kenzie, 10 Reservoir Retreat. Special 
features of the Club — To cherish the name of Robert Burns, Scot- 
land's National Poet, to foster a love for his writings, to celebrate 
the Anniversary of his birthday by a Social Festival, and generally 
encourage a taste for Scottish songs and literature ; to promote 


friendly nnd social intercourse amonjjst Scotsmen resident in 
Birmingham and district. 

No. i6S— RICCARTON Burns Club. Instituted 7tli February, 1877. 
Federated 14th January, 190S. Place and dale of meeting. Com- 
mercial Inn, Wednesday and Saturday. President, John P. 
Dickson, editor, Kilmarnock S/aiidan/ \ \'ice-president, fames P. 
Moir ; Seoefary, James P. Moir, 45 Campbell Street, Riccarton. 
Committee— Ex-Presidents Adam Mackay, ex-Bailie M'Graw, 
ex-Bailie Burnett, D. K. Porter, R. Wyllie, John Williamson, and 
Geo. Cunningham. Special features of Club— Social intercourse ; 
to spread and become familiar with the Poet's works. 

No. 169— GLASGOW District Association of Burns Clubs and Kindred 
Societies. Instituted 8th November, 1907. Federated 1908. 
Place of meeting. National Burns Club. President, Rev. James 
Forrest, M.A., 8 Holland Place ; Vice-presidents, James liallan- 
line, 83 Renfield Street, and Alex. Pollock. 52 West' Nile Street ; 
Secretary, J. Jeffrey Hunter, writer, 109 Bath Street, Glasgow. 
Committee— a". C. Alston (Rulherglen), John Burns (Nitshill), 
John Carmichael (National), Robert Carmichael (Albany), P. M'A. 
Carrick (Clarinda), Arch. Clark (Hamilton), Alex. M'Kenzie 
(Tarn o' Shanter), John Neilson (Thornliebank), Jas. Tudhope 
Tho<. Struthers (Old Kilpatrick), Laurence Watt (Barns o' 
Clyde), John Wilson (Scottish). Special features of Club — To 
further the interest of the Burns cult by promoting closer union 
between the clubs in the district and bringing the members of 
these clulis into more harmonious relationship, and to take the 
initiative in instituting and recommending movements likely to be 
beneficial to the cult. 

No. 170— LARKHALL TFHSTLK Burns Club. Instituted November, 
1906. Federated i8lh April 1908. Place and date of meeting, 
Victoria Bar, every Saturday at 7.30. Hon. president, William 
Marton, Victoria Bar ; Hon. \'ice-president, Robert M'Dowall ; 
President, John Fleming, Duke Street ; Vice-president, Thomas 
M'Ghie, 6 High Miller St. Secretary, John Crozier, 48 Mont- 
gomery Street, Larkhall ; Treasurer, William Nicol, 125 Machan 
Street. Special features of Club — To encourage the members to 
take greater interest in the Works of Burns. 

No. 171 -CHATTANOOGA Burns Society, Tenn., U.S.A. Instituted 25th 
lanuary, 1908. i^derated 2nd June, 1908. Secretary, Robert B. 
Cooke, 1005 James' Buildings, Chattanooga, Tenn., U.S.A. 

No. 172— OREGON Burns Club, Portland, Oregon, U.S.A. Instituted 25th 
January, 1908. Federated 12th November, 1908. Secretary, A. 
Gavin, 1201 William's Avenue, Piedmont, Portland, Oregon, 

No. I73~IRVINE Burns Club. Instituted 1826. Federated i8th Nov- 
ember, 1908. President, William Mitchell, M.A., W^oodhall, 
Irvine ; Vice-president, W. G. M'Andrew, M.A., Netherwood. 
Secreiaiy, Robert Boyd, B. L. , Bellevue, Irvine ; Treasurer, 
Robert F. Longmuir, Roseville. 

No. 174 -ARDROSSAN Castle Burns Club. Federated November, 1908. 
Place of meeting, Lesser Assemliiy Rooms. President, Rev. J. 
Kirkland Cameron, the Manse, Ardrossan ; Vice-presidents, 
Bailie H. Flinn, Glasgow Street, and James Galloway, Princes 
Street ; Secretary, William .Adam, Craigview, High Street, 


Ardrossan ; Treasurer, James Tyre ; Auditor, William Shearer, 
Union Bank. Committee — William Tannock, Robert Brown. J. 
C. Wilson, William Muirhead, and William Gibson. 

No. 175— MEIKLE EARNOCK Original Burns Club. Instituted 1906. 
Federated 1908. Place and date of meeting, Mr John Craig's, 
Meikle Earnock, first Friday of each month, at 6.30 p.m. Presi- 
dent, Richard II. Sneddon, Hazelbank, Strathaven Road, 
Hamilton ; Vice-President, William Kerr, Eddlevvood Buildings ; 
Secretary, William Lawson, 8 School Street, Lowwaters, 
Mamilion ; Assistant Secretary, William Lindsay, Woodhead, 
Neilsland. Special features of the Club — To keep ever green the 
memory of Scotia's greatest son, and disseminate the principles 
he strived to inculcate. 

No. 176— RENFREW Burns Club. Federated 28th December, 1908. 
President, John M'Laren, Houston Terrace ; Vice-president, 
Archibald Shearer, The Homestead. Secretary, Ludovic 

Buchanan, The Shelling, Renfrew. 

No. 177— PRESTWTCK Burns Club. Federated 17th January, 1909. 

President, ex-Bailie Cochrane; Vice president, T. I. Fleming; 

Secretary, D. S. Govan, Dalmeny, Prestwick ;5 Treasurer, Robert 

Mitchell, Caerlaverock Road. 
No. 178— KILMARNOCK Begbie's Burns Club. Instituted 20th Jan., 1909. 

Federated 20th Jan., 1909. Place of meeting, Begliie's Inn. 

President, Wm. Johnston, John Finnie Street ; Vice-president, 

Tohn Douglas, artist. King Street ; Secretary, David Edgar, 

Technical School, Kilmarnock. 

No. 179— DAILLY Jolly Beggars Burns Club. Instituted 22nd January, 
1909. Federated 22nd January, 1909. Place of meeting. King's 
Arms Hotel. President, Robt. Smith, Schoolhouse, Dailly ; 
Vice-president, Robt. Cook, Woodside Cottage, Dailly. Secretary, 
Samuel M 'Bride, Dalquharran, by Maybole. Committee — 
Thomas Dykes, Samuel M'Blain, and Hugh M'CuUoch. Special 
feature of Club — Celebration of the Poet's birthday. 

No. 180— (jL.\SGOW Tollcross Burns Club. Instituted November, 190S. 
Federated 13th February, 1909. Place and time of meeting, 
varied. President, James Williamson, Greenfield House, Upper 
Dunlop Street, Tollcross ; Vice-president, Robert R. Robertson, 
Rozelle, Mount Vernon ; Secretary, Walter Clarke, Trainard 
Terrace, Tollcross. Special features of Club— Monthly meetings ; 
tatiie and herrin'. Burns anniversary, and beef and greens 
dinners ; also schools competition. 

No. iSi— GLASGOW Primrose Burns Club. Instituted 1901. Federated 
1909. Place and date of meeting, Arcade Cafe, 25th January. 
President, John Russell, 18 Paul Street; Vice-president, J. II. 
Dennistoun, 2 Woodlands, Langside : .Secretary, Geo. R. Hunter, 
30 Ronald Street, Glasgow ; Treasurer, Matthew Reid, 82 Dundas 
Street; ex-President, Thomas Muir, 141 Dundas Street. 

No. 182— STANE (Shotts) Mos.sgiel Burns Club. Instituted 12th Feb., 1908. 
Federated 26th F"eb., 1909. Place and date of meeting, Stane 
Hotel, first Wednesday of month, 7 30 p m. Presidents, Alex. 
Barr, Stane Hotel, and Andrew Barrie, Southdyke Farm, Shotts ; 
\'ice-presidents, William Cairns, 15 Torbothie, and James Cairns, 
13 Torbothie, Stane, Shotts ; Secretary, Mr Alex. Walker, i Char- 


lotte Street, Stane, Shotts ; Treasurer, Archd. Williams, Manse 
Road, Stane, Shotts. Special features of Club — Hold meetings of 
Club every month to discuss Poet's life and works, celebrate the 
Anniversary and Hallowe'en festivals, and to have a public lecture 

No. 1S3— LONfDOXDERRY Burns Club Caledonian Society. Federated 
Itlth June, 1909. Place of meeting, Gowdie's Temperance 
Hotel. President, D. C. Hogg, Victoria Park ; Vice- 
president, Jolin Howatt, Great James Street; Secretary, 
Jas. C. Scrimgeour, 3 Sunnyside Terrace. Committee— Thos. 
D. Graham and Alex. Wightman. Special feature of Club — A 
subscripti'iU and entry fee is made, whereby Scotchmen in 
poor and necessitious circumstances may be relieved. 

No. 184— BLAIRADAM Shanter Burns Club. Instituted 2l8t August, 
1907. Federated •28th August, 1909. Place and date of meet- 
ing, Blairadani Tavern, on Mondays, at 7 p.m. President, 
John Ramsay, Swauley Cottage, Kelty ; Vice-president, 
William Morton, 35 Adams" Terrace, Kelty ; Secretary, George 
Ireland, Old Office Road, Kelty ; Treasurer, Thos. Hunter. 
Committee — John Miliar, Thos. Hunter. Thos. Sneddon, Rob. 
Storrar, Will. Hell, and Will. Clark. Special features of Club — 
Readings, recitations, songs, and friendly and homely Club. 

No. 1S5— BURTON Burns Club. Instituted December, 1908. Federated 
15th November, 1909. Presi(lei:t, John T. C. Eadie, J. P., 
Newton-Solney ; Vice-president, Dr Docherty, Branstone Road ; 
Secretary, Geo. Rae, 85 Belvedere Road, Burton-on-Trent. 
Committee — R. N. Robertson, J. P. M'Intyre, J. Green, J. J, 
Anderson, R. F. Paterson, A. Skinner, J. B. Johnstone, A. J. 
M'Vicar, J. Millar, and J. L. Thompson. Special feature of 
('lub — To foster a love fnr our National Poet in the hearts of 
all Scotsmen in the tiistrict. 

No. 186— KILMARNOCK Glencairn Burns Club. Instituted 1909. 
Federated 1909. Place and date of meeting. Bridge Inn, 
Robertson Place, Kilmarnock, second Friday of each month. 
President, James Gilmour, 22 Arbuckle Street ; Vice-president, 
D^vid Burns, 9 Arbuckle Street ; Secretary, Austen M. Turnbull, 
Sillerbitha, Wellington Street, Kilmarnock ; Treasurer, John 
Smith. Committee — Arch. M'Gregor, Harry Fingland, Neil 
Craig, W^in. Strain, .John M'Gregor. Special features of Club — 
Pleading papers on Burns at the monthly meetings ; celebrating 
the Poet's birth in .January ; and to do whatever lies in our 
power to uphold the name and works of Robert Burns. 

No. 187— GAL.\SHIELS Burns Club. Instituted 1908. Federated 6th 
December, 1909. Place of meeting. Burgh Buildings, Galashiels. 
Hon. President, Sir John N. Bairan, Bart., M.P. ; President, 
Philip Sullev, F.S.A., F.H.H.S., 83 .High Street ; Vice- 
prebidents, A. L. Brown, A. J. Craig, and H. S. Murray ; 
Secretary, Philip SuUey, F.S.A., F.R.H.S., 83 High Street, 
(ialashiels ; Hon. Treasurer, Hugh Murray, 63 Channel Street. 
Committee— J. Watson, H. Tait, 1). Hislop, W. Young, P. 
M'E^van, J. Crawford, H. Blanche, W. Patterson, A. Noble, 
\V. GiVison. L. Lennox, G. Elliot, G. P. Sanderson, and C. 

.J. .Maxwkll & So.x, Printers and Lithos., Uunifriea. 






No. XX. 
January, 1911 




Published by the 



(Riyfy/S resvri^e d) 


/I New and Enlarged Edition of 

The Tinkler Gypsies* 

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Smuggling in the Solway* 

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A Sketch of Scottish Literature from the Earhest Times 

— JVm. M'llwraith - - - - 5 

The Restoration of the Auld Brig o' Ayr— James A. 

Morris - - - - - - - - - 27 

The Auld Brig o' Ayr : Re-opening Ceremony - - 34 

" Doctor Hornbook " — William Yonug^ R.S.IV. - 51 
Ayr Auld Brig : List of Subscriptions by Burns Clubs, 

Scottish Societies, and Burns Federation - - 54 

" Honest Allan " (conchided) — Edivard Pinniiigtoii - 62 

Burns and Jamaica - - - - - - - 77 

American Appreciations of Burns — A. C. White - - 'i^ 

Burns's Stewarton Relatives : Memorial Unveiled - 92 

Reviews --------- gg 

The " Merry Muses '' Again - . _ - - 105 

Club Notes - - - - - - - - - i2o 

Notes and Queries - - - - - - 136 

Annual Meeti;ig of Federation - - - -149 

Club Directory - - - - - - 157 


This number marks the completion of twenty years since the 
Chroinch' came into existence, for the greater part of which 
period its success was the result r)f the work of few hands. 

Now that the [)ublication is in the hands of the Federation 
as a whole, it is incumbent on the Clubs to look to its future 
froui both the commercial and literary points of view. 

The Editor again thanks his contributors and the members 
of the Special Committee who have taken such a lively interest 
in the present issue. 


January 17th, 1911. 




HAVING now brought this .sketch to the threshold of the 
renowned Poet who exercised so great an influence on 
the poetical literature of Scotland, I shall briefly revert to one of 
his poetic contemporaries who was born in the same year, and 
survived him for the long period of forty years. 

John Mayne was born in Dutnfries in 1759, but had left 
that town some time before Burns took up his abode there. In 

his youth Mayne went to Glasgow as a com- 
Tohn Mayne, . , . , , 

positors apprentice, subsequently removing to 
London, where he became proprietor and joint- 
editor of the Star newspaper. When eighteen years of age he 
published the nucleus of his chief poem, the " Siller Gun," in a 
quarto page of twelve stanzas, which he continued to reconstruct 
and improve up to the time of his death in 1836. The final 
edition, in five cantos, was published in that year, and it has 
continued to be the ^andard edition ever since. The " Siller 
Gun " is a witty descriptive poem, after the style of " Peblis to the 
Play " and Fergusson's " Leith Races," and has long been valued 
as a record of an ancient custom once popular in the author's birth- 
place. The poem describes a shooting competition for a little silver 
gun, which had been presented to Dumfries by James VI. Sir 
Walter Scott thought it superior to Fergusson, and that it came 
nearer to Burns than any of the effort >; of his immediate pre- 
decessors ; and to Mayne's further credit his poetical efforts did 

not begin and end here. He wrote some spirited verses on the 
time-honoured customs of Hallowe'en, which were first published 
in Ruddimans Weekly Magazine in 1780, the same periodical 
which brought the early efforts of Robert Fergusson before the 
Edinburgh public some ten years previously. In " Hallowe'en " 
Mayne delineates in Inmiorous fashion the su[)erstitious and half- 
forgotten customs in use amongst the young of both sexes on 
Hallow Eve respecting their matrimonial prospects. In the 
language of the author — 

" Showing I10W to ken their matrimonial male, 
The youngsters keen 
Search a' the dark decrees o' fate 
At Hallowe'en." 

This poem, which is still well worth perusal, is believed to 
have suggested to Burns his witty and vivacious poem bearing 
the same title in which he, too, sets forth in happiest vein the 
merriment and superstitious credulity connected with an old-time 
institution which is rapidly dying out. 

Mayne also wrote a poem entitled " Glasgow," which was 
published in 1803, and which was at one time exceedingly popular. 
These constitute the author's principal narrative poems, but it is 
evident from the " W'inter Sat Lang'' and "Logan Braes" that 
he was not devoid of lyrical gifts. His best and most popular 
poem is " Logan Braes," set to the tune of " Logan Water." 
The tune of " Logan Water " is thought to belong to the 
seventeenth century, and was originally attached to verses of a 
rather indelicate character. Upwards of four years after the 
appearance of " Logan Braes," Burns, who had heard the tune, 
adopted the musical form, and was induced to write for it his 
well-known stanzas of " Logan Water." 

Having noticed the more important individuals comprising 

the dynasty of vernacular poets, we now come to the one Scottisii 

Poet who is best known to those who may not 
Robert Burns, , , , . . , , , ... 

have closely investigated the complete circle ot 
1759-1796. ^ . , . , , 

Scottish writers and poets. In most countries 

which have a literary reputation there is usually one poet who 

stands out above the rest, as .Shakespeare in England, Moliere in 

France, Dante in Italy, Goethe in Germany, -Burns in Scotland ; 
but perhaps in none of these countries has the dominant poet so 
completely overshadowed all the rest as this Poet of Scotland, 
This has given rise to the popular fiction so frequently found in 
the mind of the average Englishman that Burns is the only Poet 
of whom Scotland can boast. Indeed, this idea seems to have 
been one which loomed largely in the mind of the late W. E, 
Henley, till the reverse was revealed to him in the course of his 
researches into Scottish literature while assisting to prepare the 
Centenary Edition of the Poet's works. 

From his famous, but erratic and ill-balanced essay entitled 
" Burns's Life, Genius, Achievements," it is evident that though 
face to face with historical facts his preconceived notions on the 
subject died hard, for instead of frankly acknowledging this new 
revelation he did not hesitate to wound the susceptibilities of 
Burns's countrymen by giving expression to covert insinuations 
ngainst the character of their dead hero. From no other critic, 
perhaps, was uncharitableness less becoming, and none knew 
better than he that in the case of authors it is specially true " that 
the evil they do lives after them — the good is oft interred with 
their bones." As Henley's essay has already been dealt with in 
the Burns Chronicle, no detailed criticism of it need be made here. 
Suffice it to say that the mere fact of Burns being able, on 
his literary side, to eclipse so many writers in the same field who 
have been dealt with in previous chapters, is sufficient evidence 
of his unrivalled originality and force of genius. The principal 
facts in the life of Burns are so well known that they need not be 
dwelt on at length. Indeed, the literature which has grown up in 
the wake of Burns is of such huge dimensions that it is apt to 
confuse and render concentration perplexing and difficult. The 
Poet was born on the 25th of January, 1759, at Alloway, in the 
vicinity of Ayr, amid the frost and snow of a Scottish winter, and 
in a cottage built by his father, who was a farmer of the poorest 
class. A few days after the child was born the gable of the auld 
clay biggin' fell, and the mother and child had to take refuge in a 
jieighbour's house. The storm which then broke upon the 

infant brow foreshadowed to some extent the tempestuous future 

that was in store for him. 

It is more than probable that Burns had a well-defined line 

of intellectual ancestors, and that nature, in her secret resources, 

had long been preparing for his advent so that he might take his 

place on the world's stage in due season. On both his father 

and his mother's side he belonged to a class of substantial Scottish 

husbandmen or yeomen. In the Poet's autobiographical letter 

to Dr John Moore, the distinguished physician and author, which 

covers the most important period of Burns's life, he makes many 

playful allusions to his own life and that of his family. While 

there is no perversion of facts, it is well to make allowance for the 

play of the poetic imagination which may be read between the 

lines. What a charming and instructive human document this 

sketch would have been had the Poet carried it over the 

subsequent nine years of his life in the same playful spirit. 

" When at Edinburgh last winter," he says, " I got acquainted at 

the Herald Ofifice, and looked through the granary of honours. I 

there found almost every name in the kingdom, but for me" — 

" My ancient but ignoble blood 

Mas crept thro' scoundrels since the flood." 

If we trace the Poet's family no further back than his 
grandfather, akso named Robert Burnes, about the year 1700, he 
and his four brothers were sufificiently wealthy, it seems, to be 
able to display silver utensils at their table. Moreover, there is a 
tradition that the Poet's grandfather, with the assistance of some 
of his neighbours, built the first school on his farm which was 
erected in the district, and united to support its teacher. If such 
was the case, we can readily imagine that heredity played some 
part in the love of knowledge displayed by the whole Burns 
family, and also in the aptitude of the sons in making the best of 
their slender opportunities. The strenuous efforts in the Poet's 
home to acquire the best education within their reach is supported 
by the most eloquent testimony. A glance at their domestic 
circle as it is presented in the autobiographical letter already alluded 
to is a most impressive picture. 


When at the farm of Lochlea, during meal-time, parents, 
brothers, sisters ate with a spoon in one hand and a book in the 
other. All of them were far above the intellectual level of those 
in a similar social sphere, whose aspirations seldom rose above the 
grosser material comforts of life. Robert, who was highly strung 
and delicately constituted, was especially noted for a retentive 
memory, and, according to his own testimony, soon made an 
excellent English scholar, and when ten or eleven years of age he 
was an authority on English grammar — absolutely a critic in 
substantives, verbs, and particles. His latent poetic faculty 
was first stimulated by an old maid resident in the parish, 
who was remarkable for her credulity and superstition, and 
had the largest collection of tales and songs concerning 
devils, ghosts, fairies, brownies, witches, and the like it is 
possible to conceive. As a matter of fact, Burns was by no 
means the ill-taught and unlettered Scottish peasant he has so 
frequently been made to appear by uninformed apologists. 
In addition to his knowledge of English grammar he knew 
something of French, and at the parish school of Hugh Rodger, 
Kirkoswald, he entered upon the study of mensuration, and at the 
Tarbolton Club he diligently strove to qualify himself in general 
questions— taking up in debate both the positive and negative 
sides, so that he might acquire a breadth of view unattainable 
by other means in those days of superstition and narrowness. 
The existence of the Club and its membership came to the 
ears of Burns's schoolmaster, who sneered at Burns and his 
schoolmate, WilUam Neven, for their presumption. The story 
has been so often told that we need not repeat it. Burns 
challenged the dominie in argument and defeated him. This 
incident, ordinary though it may appear, goes to illustrate the 
difference between genius and talent, the former of which was 
born with the Poet, and time served to emphasise it. 

Probably through a long line of ancestors the spark of poetic 
genius had been silently gathering force and volume till it found 
expression in the peasant Poet, and the Goddess of the rustic 
Muses finally threw her mantle over him at the plo'Jgh. We know 


thai his fatlier was no common man, but a man of strong moral 
fibre, shrewd intelligence, and keen observation, to whom, as 
the Poet generously confessed, he was indebted for most of his 
preicnsions to wisdom. However much the Poet may have been 
indebted to the debates at the Tarbolton Club, the faculty of 
criticism was no doubt awakened by his father, wiio was of the 
intellectual type of the best class of the Scottish peasant, possess- 
ing sound views on religion, on education, and his duty to his 
family. For the instruction of his family he drew up a catechism, 
cultivated friendly conversation with his sons on the questions 
which then engrossed the attention of men of light and leading, 
teaching them arithmetic and other branches of education of which 
he himself had gained more than the ordinary knowledge. In 
emulation of the father, the son manifested a great deal in common 
with him. Even when a mere youth he was ambitious of shining 
in conversation, and soon became such an adept in Socinian 
arguments as to excite alarm of heresy among the more bigoted 
Calvinists of the neighbourhood. Actuated by a fervent desire 
to develop the best that was in him, Burns kept up a correspon- 
dence with several of his young companions in the same rank of 
life with the view of acquiring a good style in composition, and 
'^o excelled in this that his vanity was flattered by comparing his 
^rt-n ejjistles with those of his correspondents. " I carried this 
whim so far," he observes, " that though I had not three farthings 
worth of business in the world yet every post brought me as many 
letters as if I had been a broad plodding son of day-book and 
ledger." He also kept a common-place book, in which he wrote 
his ideas on man, religion, and various other subjects, carefully 
criticising his own fir-t productions. 15y this Icind of discipline he 
rose by degrees to the level of the highly cultured, and quickly 
discerned the weak and the strong points in the productions of 
others in the sphere of poetry as well as in other branches of 
literature. As an example of his shrewd critical faculty, the supreme 
literary critic in Edinburgh in his day was I)r Hugh Blair, the 
eloquent divine, and Professor of Rhetoric and Belle-Lettre, yet 
Burns became sufficiently critical to observe that l^lair had 


altainments hut no great depth — -an opinion which is fully con- 
firmed in Blair's Dissertation on the Ossianic Poems, not to quote 
other opinions from eminent literary authorities. 

Gifted far beyond the average of mankind Burns seems to 
have been impressed with the idea that he had a mission to his 
less-gifted fellow-countrymen. " I seem to be one sent into the 
world," he says, " to see and observe ; the joy of my heart is to 
study men, their manners, and their ways.'' Heinrich Heine, the 
German poet, said of himself, " Crown me not with the laurel 
wreath of poetry, for I have always looked upon poetry as a divine 
plaything, but lay a sword upon my coffin, for I have been a brave 
soldier in the liberation war of humanity.'' The idea th\is 
expressed by this gifted poet was that though the world claimed 
him only as a poet and the mouth-piece of sweet sounds expressed 
to please the fancy, he considered that his noblest achievement 
consisted in emancipating the minds of his countrymen from that 
theological superstition and intellectual narrowness which have 
ever constituted the great enemies of progress. Surely it will not 
be thought invidious to make a similar claim for Robert Burns. 

By the fearless courage and biting sarcasm of John Knox 
the Reformation was more thorough in Scotland than in any other 
country in Europe, but by the end of the eighteenth century the 
Kirk of John Knox itself needed reformation. Burns, though 
never claiming to be either saint or reformer, by his wit and satire 
swept the Augean Stables more effectually than any other agency 
could have done. When he first shed the light of his genius on 
his beloved land, Scotland was in the rigid grasp of Calvinism, 
which had acted throughout the seventeenth century and part of 
the eighteenth as a petrifying agency, stifling all originality and 
freedom of thought. The Deity which the Calvinist conceived 
was an extension of his own morbid and unhealthy nature — a 
being at one and the same time selfish, jealous, and revengeful, 
bearing the unmistakable impression of having been the survival 
of a more barbarous and ferocious age. Burns caught up the 
spirit of his own day as it existed in the atmosphere of advanced 
thought, but in its moral application to life and conduct he nevtr 


abandoned the sentiment of true religion in its best sense. 
The French Revolution had stirred in men new conceptions 
of political and intellectual freedom, and the Poet accurately- 
gauged its importance for the future of mankind. In a certain 
sense it is true that with all his relentless logic and biting satire, 
Burns did not finally ?weep pharisaism from the theological world 
in his own day, but he put a weapon into the hands of tiie 
advocate of honesty and freedom of thought by which he could 
gradually break down intolerance and bigotry, and put to the 
blush the hypocrite and the pharisee. Some idea will be conveyed 
of the extent to which the spirit of Calvinism, had narrowed and 
prejudiced the minds of many of the people by the fact that when 
the Rev. George Whitfield, visited Scotland for the first time, he was 
solemnly and sternly rebuked by the Seceders, because he refused 
to confine his labours to them. .\nd why ? Because they alone 
claimed to be the chosen of God, while all outside the pale of 
their theological cult were destined for the Abodes of Darkness. 
Whitfield, however, administered a well-merited reproof by 
pointing out " if that was so they ha 1 no need of him or anyone 
else, for according to their own testimony they were saved 
already ; and, like the Master he professed to follow, ' he came 
not to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.' " It was 
against such blind selfishness and barbaric intolerance that Burns 
directed his satire of " Holy Willie's Prayer." In addition 
to the corruption of the Church, and the false views 
of religion which were then prevalent, the majority of the 
people were fettered by a slavish fear, not so much of their God 
as of their minister, and Burns had the courage to tell them so. 
The countrymen of Burns may not only crown him with the 
laurel wreath of poetry but hail him as a brave soldier in the 
liberation war of humanity. All who are conversant witli his 
poetry, and the spirit of the real Burns, well know how deep a 
reverence he had for true religion, which is manifest in " The 
Cottar's Saturday Night," his " Prayer in Prospect of Death," 
" An Epistle to a Young Friend," and others which need not be 
quoted. His satires against Presbyterian theology, as exemplified 


in " Holy Willie's Prayer," " The Dedication to Gavin Hamilton, 
E'^quire," and the " Address to the Unco Guid, or the Rigidly 
Righteous," were induced by the corruption and rampant 
hypocricy of the system, rather than as justification of his own 
moral defects, as has been frequently alleged. It was 
surely a great achievement for the peasant Poet to have 
so extended the intellectual horizon of his countrymen that 
their range of vision could penetrate beyond the narrow confines 
the Church had so firmly drawn around them. Even taking him 
in a poetical sense alone, it is diflicult to imagine what the condi- 
tion of Scotland and Scottish poetry would have been to-day had 
he never lived to shed the fervid glow of his genius on the 
literature of his country. The nation could have dispensed with 
every other poet who preceded him and not been much the loser. 
He was the mouth-piece and intellectual exponent of the many 
in whom similar thoughts and aspirations long had dwelt, but 
who made little mark for lack of a suitable vehicle of exi)ression. 
However much Burns's poetry and song may be read and 
admired in other tongues, it is only the native-born Scot to whom 
they appeal in their true measure and comprehensive significance. 
Burns gave new tone and vigour to national sentiment, while his 
poetic form made the native dialect a picturesque and fascinating 
medium of literary expression. In Scotland no truly original 
poetry, redolent of the soil, had arisen since Dunbar, and 
he had long become as a voice crying in the wilderness, 
conveying indefinite sound and hazy imagery. More than 
three hundred years before Burns, it is true, Scotland 
possessed a national poetical literature, in many respects 
rich and scholarly ; but the works of such poets as Henryson, 
Dunbar, Gavin Douglas, and Sir David Lindsay appealed more 
exclusively to the monks of the cloister, and were practically 
unknown to the outside world and the toiling masses of Scotia. 
The result of this was that by the end of the sixteenth century, 
and in spite of the brilliant achievements of those old lights, a 
long period of literary stagnation fell upon Scotland just at the 
time the literature of her English sister, after a period of 


inactivit), fDund new life and L'.\[)ression in tlie great Elizabethan 
writers. The Hterary history of nations is that when they have 
attained a certnin intellectual standard they have their periods of 
fluctuation, of ebb and flow, of feel)leness and strength ; but the 
main current of thought and culture never disappears, and Scot- 
land was no exception. In no period of the literary history of 
Scotland can it be shown to have been otherwise, and it cannot 
be said in truth that Burns, with all his exceptional genius, was a 
prodigy whose advent was independent of antecedent influences 
or environment. Nay, rather he is the culmination of a literary 
movement which was commenced upwards of half a century before 
he was born. The movement declared itself in an outbreak of 
the national literary s[)u-it, and an ardent desire to make the 
Scottish vernacular a vehicle of form and expression, and it was 
stimulated by such writers as William Hamilton of Ciilbertfield, 
Allan Ramsay, and Robert Fergusson. 

Burns himself acknowledges, in the most emphatic manner, 
his obligations to the two latter poets. Indeed, he rather over- 
estimates than under-estimates his obligations to them, and in 
Fergusson especially he recognised a man of similar poetic 
temperament, and like passions with himself. To Fergusson, with 
all his weakness and folly, Burns extended his sympathetic charity, 
and regarded him as an erring brother bard, more entitled to love 
and pity than condemnation and neglect. This induced him to 
pay the first tribute of respect yet done to the memory of poor 
Fergusson, though he had been dead fifteen years, by erecting at 
his own expense a memorial stone above his last resting-place. 
In a passing reference to the subject of Scottish song it must not 
be forgotten that many beautiful songs circulated in Scotland 
before either Ramsay's or Burns's day — most of them of unknown 
authorship — for from very early times the country appears to have 
been favourable to, or the people susceptible of, poetic inspiration. 
As far as the substance of Ramsay's poems are concerned, he was 
not much more than an imitator; but by the function he fulfilled 
he showed unmistakably that original and truly national forms \^^y 
ready to the hand of the Scottish Poet, and thus paved the way 


for a greater genius. The fact that Burns was not the first gleaner 
in the field of Scottish poetry does not lessen his claim to 
originality, for his treatment was original and unique. 

Making every allowance for Burns's indebtedness to Ramsay 
and Fergusson, his obligations to them cannot explain why he is 
not only the Poet of Scotland but an English classic, which the 
others are not and can never be. The political union of England 
and Scotland in 1707 merged, to a great extent, the life of Scotland 
in that of England, and thus introduced a rival to the native 
dialect. The Lowland Scots was a speech the origin of which 
could be traced to the same source as Southern English, although 
it had developed on independent lines, and had fallen from its 
former prestige, and become the vehicle of ribald songs and rude 
ballads. It was by the occasional appearance of flashes of true 
poetry, which gave some indication of how much had been 
obscured by vulgar and commonplace thoughts, that the 
potentialities of the native material was gradually made manifest. 

Although Hamilton, Ramsay, and Fergusson had done 
much to restore vernacular poetry to its former glory, it remained 
for Burns to complete the work they had begun. In comparison 
with his models Burns is far ahead, and if we search their 
writings critically we find they lack most of his characteristics — his 
fire, his satire, his pathos, his humour — and the result has been 
that he has been an influence in Scotland more powerful than 
them all put together. Matthew Arnold, in an impromptu which 
savours more of smartness than truth, said ]:)urns lived in a world 
of Scotch drink, Scotch religion, and Scotch manners. The 
provincialism thus indicated cannot be correctly applied to Burns, 
whose works have been translated into the language of almost 
every country which makes any pretence 10 literary taste and 
culture. Nor does the local colour detract from his greatness and 
universality, for the obvious reason that it is in reality the pro- 
duction of genius. 

In his portrayal of Scottish life and character he embraces 
what is eternal and true of human nature everywhere. The fact 
of " Alloway'.s auld haunted Kirk " being made the scene of the 


witches' revel in " Tain o' Shanter '" does not make Durns more 
exclusively the Poet of Scotland than the powerful scene on the 
Brochen on Walpurgis Nicht confines Goethe to Germany. The 
Germans are proud to claim Goethe as their countryman as 
Scotsmen are proud to claim Burns; but his poetry is no more 
for Scotland and Scotsmen alone than the poems of Goethe are 
exclusively for Germany and Germans. The fame of Burns, there- 
fore, is not wholly due to the ptrfervidum ingeuimn Scoforum, 
however much it acted upon himself and re-acted upon his 
countrymen, but rather because he was a great poetic artist. His 
mastery of his art was the result of intense and careful study, 
and had its origin in the same intuitive faculty which made him a 
critic of English grammar at eleven years of age. Those who 
have studied the best examples of eighteenth century literature 
need not be reminded that perfection of expression was the ruling 
passion which was carried to its highest pitch in poetry by 
Alexander Pope, who derived his impetus from William Walsh, a 
man of wit and fashion. As far as the great republic of letters 
■was concerned, Walsh for some time had been a silent and 
exclusive influence who had not yet proclaimed himself on 
the house-top. With Dryden's translation of Virgil's " Eclogues " 
was published an elegant discourse on pastoral poetry in general 
by \\'illiam Walsh, Esquire, in the course of which he set forth 
what pastoral poetry ought to be ; but his views were too deeply 
tinged with the imaginary scenes of Arcadia for the more prosaic 
conditions of modern life. Thus, when Pope commenced to 
write, W'alsh, deeply steeped in formative classicalism, strove to 
impress him with the idea that the ancients had said everything 
that was worth saying, and there was nothing left for the modern 
poet but to improve upon their manner of saying it. Burns did 
not stand outside the sphere of those tendencies which were 
aspiring after literary perfection, and, though he gained much 
from Ramsay and Fergusson, much of the influence which made 
him what he was can be traced to a period anterior to theirs. He 
himself tells us that " he had felt early stirrings of ambition, but 
they were but the blind gropings of Homer's Cyclops round the 


walls of his cave/' This evident)) applied to a time before the 
idea of a poetic mission had become fixed in his mind. 

In the course of his literary development his poems must be 
divided into two distinct groups, the first belonging to the period 
when he was more immediately under the influence of Ramsay, 
Fergusson, and the earlier Scottish poets. In those belong- 
ing to the second period we observe the Poet under the 
influence of wider reading and more comprehensive poetical 
ideals, when he has become dissatisfied " with a Muse sae 
mean as his." By means of his own critical faculty he has 
become deeply impressed with the idea that much of his early 
work is at variance with the prevailing tone — the measured 
and artistically constructed poetry of the eighteenth century. 
While in this mood of dissatisfaction he strove with praise- 
worthy effort to bring himself into harmony with the popular 
literary idea. But this was not his true and natural vein, and he 
could not so freely imp his wing as he could in his natural atmos- 
phere. With all his gifts, it does not appear that Burns had the 
gift of sustamed dramatic concentration, although he contemplated 
engaging in work requiring this. On this point, however, no 
critic can dogmatise with any degree of certainty, for his life was 
short ; and while his poems are full of vivacity and dazzling flashes 
of genius, these are seldom long sustained. " No poet, with the 
exception of Shakespeare," says Sir Walter Scott, " ever possessed 
the power of exciting the most varied and discordant emotions 
with such rapid transition." The storm in "Tarn o' Shanter,'' for 
instance, is great in conception, powerful and graphic in its descrip- 
tion, and is worthy of comparison with the storm which raged 
round the dishevelled locks of King Lear — 

" The wind blew as 'twad blawn its last ; 
The rattlin' showers rose on the blast ; 
The speedy gleams the darkness swallowed ; 
Loud, deep, and lang the thunder bellowed.' 

" Before him ' Doon ' pours all his floods ; 
The doubling storm roars through the woods ; 
The lightnings flash from pole to pole ; 
Near, and more near, the thunders roll : 
When, glimmering through llie groaning trees, 
Kirk-AJloway seemed in a bleeze." 


Tlie power of tliis description proceeds from its inlrusion as 
the sudden unpremeditated outburst of a mental state stimulated 
by the weird and uncanny situation. Passing from the storm to 
the witches' dance we get an additional example of the Poet's dis- 
criptive power and gifts of rapid transition. The iiumour is not 
vulgar, and harmonizes perfectly with the rest of the picture. 

Great as Burns was as a poet, he was even greater as a song- 
writer. Indeed, Carlyle has said that his chief influence as an 
author will ultimately depend on his songs. Unfettered by rules 
of poetic art his songs are the spontaneous outburst of genuine 
heart-felt emotion ; love, pity, or patriotism is poured from the 
deepest receptacles of his sensitive nature. In his songs, as in his 
poems, he continued and made more [)erfecl the works others had 
begun, by building on old foundations, and yet he is entitled to 
the claim of originality. Out of coarseness and confusion he 
brought forth order and refinement, and by his inimitable gift he 
ranks as the first of all our song-writers. We instinctively recall 
the martial fury of " .Scots wha hae wi' Wallace bled," the comic 
archness of " Duncan Gray," the Bacchanalian revel of " Willie 
brew'd a peck o' maut," the tender pathos of " Mary in Heaven," 
and the lofty independence of " A man's a man for a' that." By 
his poems Burns first emerged from the obscurity of a Scottish 
peasant, and became entitled to an important position in the 
literature of his country, but his songs entitle him to rank among 
the great poets of the world. Just as Shakespeare was borne to 
the proud pre-eminence of the first of dramatic poets on the 
accumulated genius of his predecessors in the same field, so 
Burns was borne to the pre-eminence of the first of song-writers on 
the accumulated genius of a whole dynasty of lyrical poets. To 
the treasury of Scottish song many excellent examples have been 
contributed since his day, which do infinite credit to their writers, 
but no single one of them has done so much for the abiding glory 
of Scottish song as did Burns. As a prose-writer he has not given 
hostage to fame to the same extent as he has done as a poet 
though in the matter of quantity his prose exceeds his verse. 

His prose for the most part consists of letters, but it includes 


a valuable fragment of autobiography, three journals made at 
Mossgiel, Edinburgh, and Ellisland respectively, also an account 
of his Border Tour, his tour in the Highlands, and historical 
notes of two collections of Scottish song. These, however, are 
but a small proportion compared with his letters. Upwards of 
five hundred and fifty letters have been published, nor does this 
include all the letters he wrote, though no doubt it comprises all 
the most important and characteristic of them. One of the most 
remarkable features of Burns's correspondents is their number, and 
the difference of their social status ; they include all ranks and 
conditions — Professors, Earls, Dukes, Doctors, Lawyers, Farmers, 
Ploughmen, and Servant Girls. Indeed none of our great letter- 
writing poets, including Gray, Covvper, and Byron, commanded 
anything like so wide and varied a circle. In their essence his 
letters manifest much the same features as his poems, the same 
strong personality, the same view of life in a theological, political 
and social sense — in short, the same aggressive, manly indepen- 
dence. Indeed, Jeffrey maintained that the letters of Burns had 
given him a higher opinion of him as a man than did his poetry, 
though both alike bore the impress of genius. This is no jmall 
compliment from so uncompromising a critic as the editor of the 
Edinburgh Revieiv. Dr Robertson, too, comparing his prose- 
writings with his verse, "thought his prose the most extraordinary 
of the two for its vigouf of intellect and wide range of knowledge." 
In spite of the testimony of those and other great critics, 
however, the verdict of posterity generally is emphatic in its 
opinion that Burns's poetry far eclipses his prose-writings. It 
must be conceded that these latter do not manifest the same 
spontaneous and natural style apparent in the vigorous simplicity 
of his verse. The popular opinion as to the defects of his prose 
is due to the fact that the Poet was not such a master of the Eng- 
lish tongue as he was of his native Doric. Though there is some 
truth in this, it is by no means the whole truth, and far too much 
importance has been attached thereto. In many cases his corres- 
pondents were people moving in a more exalted social sphere, 
whose scholastic attainments were superior to his, and whose 


relations to him he had not had opportunities of accurately 
gauging. \\'hen wiiling to such people, he begins and ends on an 
artificial note, with the intention of being agreeable to them and 
shielding his own pride and independency from the possibility of 
slight or humiliation. When he writes to known and trusted friends 
his style becomes natural, elegant, and expressive. This is fully 
illustrated in the Dunlop Correspondence, that of Dr Moore, and 
others : while in the Clarinda Correspondence we do not get the 
natural man, but an artificial Burns, striving for effect in the estima- 
tion of a woman whose education was equal, if not superior, to his 
own. Moreover, it is probable that Burns, with all his literary 
strength and originality, was not free from the faults of his male 
contemporaries who were afraid to surrender that superiority of 
wit and learning they liked to assume over the gentler sex. 
It matters not what plea may be advanced in defence of the 
artificial nature of the Clarinda Correspondence, it has done 
much to damage the Poet's reputation as a prose-writer. When 
writing to a professor or great nobleman with whom he had but 
slight acquaintance the Poet adopted a similar stilted .'■tyle, differing 
in degree only ; but after all, perhaps too much has been made of 
this by the fastidious critic. Even in the province of poetry and 
song, where Burns is at his strongest and best, all his productions 
would not bear the strictest test of critical analysis. In the 
personality of Burns there is much that is fascinating and noble, 
though there is much in his life to regret and censure, but if he 
had not been a man of strong passions he could not have been the 
great poet he was. All the qualities of his highly strung and 
sensitive nature tended to excess, and contained the elements of 
the whirlwind of passion that devastates as well as produces the 
sweet melody which soothes the human soul. In censuring the 
failings of Burns, the faults of the age in which he lived have 
been too frequently overlooked, for no man can be fairly judged 
apart from his environment. 

In succession to Robert Burns no more appropriate name 
can be added than that of Robert Heron, his first biographer— a 
man who from his achievements in literature, apart from his 


association with the Poet, is entitled to a brief notice. Robert 

Heron, the son of a weaver, was born at New- 
Robert Heron, „ ,, ■ , . n i , , , 

Galloway m 1764, in a small thatched house in 
1764-1807. / . 

the main street, which was for the most part 

composed of thatched houses, without eitlier fire-places or 
chimneys, the smoke issuing from the doors. His father, John 
Heron, was at one time Bailie of the small Burgh, and was a man 
of some intelligence, with an instinctive desire to keep abreast of 
the times. At that time the only newspaper that came to New- 
Galloway was the London Chronicle, which was lent to John 
Heron by Gordon of Kenmure Castle. Heron was in the habit 
of reading its contents aloud to his staff of weavers, amongst whom 
was John Lowe, the author of " Mary's Dream." In those 
surroundings Robert Heron was nurtured until he was nine years 
of age, after which he attended school for two years. When 
eleven years of age he supported himself by teaching and writing, 
and by the time he was sixteen he had earned sufficient money to 
pay for the classes at Edinburgh University for one session. 
While at Edinburgh his parents supported him on oatmeal and 
potatoes from New-Galloway, and these formed his main sub- 
sistence. On his father's side there was a strong predilection for 
knowledge, and a desire for the cultivation of literary taste. 

Robert's grandmother was aunt to Dr Alexander Murray, the 
famous linguist and orierital scholar. In those days there was 
little disposition to spare the rod and spoil the child, and Heron, 
who had a quick and impetuous temper, sometimes punished his 
pupils with unnecessary severity. In his youth he was a great 
reader, and his knowledge soon became vast and varied. While 
still in his teens he was appointed parochial teacher of Kelton, 
where he remained two years, after which he returned to Edin- 
burgh, his father having intended him for the Church; but as there 
was no appearance of him obtaining patronage in the Church he 
turned his attention to literature, and in 1798, when twenty years 
of age, he edited Thomson's Seasons. His introductory critique 
was regarded as a piece of clever and judicious writing, and was 
subsequently incorporated in the elaborate edition of Thomson's 


poetical works, published at Perth. This was the means of first 
bringing Heron into public notice. Being an adept at languages 
he next applied himself to the work of translating. He 
translated Arabian Tales, being a continuation of the Arabian 
Nights, also Niebuhrs Travels throi/gh Arabia, Letters bctivcen 
General Dumourier ami Pache, Garat's Memories of the Revolution, 
and a number of others. Indeed, few writers contributed to so 
many pa()ers and magazines as did Robert Heron. His knowledge 
was great, and his ambition knew no bounds, and ultimately the 
necessity to write as a means of living was a greater incentive than 
all. He even ventured upon a series of lectures on law and juris- 
prudence, but they did not prove a success. By this time Heron 
had abandoned all idea of going into the Church, thinking it 
beneath the dignity of a man who could earn more than three 
hundred a year by his pen. 

It is scarcely possible to imagine a man so ill-adapted for 
success as poor Heron. To use a quotation from l)r Johnson's 
life of the poet Savage, " The reigning error of his life was thai he 
mistook the love for the practice of virtue, and wns not so much 
a good man as the friend of goodness." In writing to his parents, 
who had no doubt given him some much-needed counsel, he 
gives expression to the following : " O forget and forgive my 
follies, look upon me as a son who will anxiously strive to comfort 
and please you, and, after all your misfortunes, to render the 
evening of your days as happy as possible." 

" But he returned like the dog to its vomit and the sow that 
is washed to its wallowing in the mire." In spite of his faithful 
promises to his parents, a brief season of prosperity made him 
intemperate, vain, and ostentatious, alluring him into extravagant 
and imprudent habits. No sooner did he feel his feet than he 
set up a carriage and pair of horses, with a lackey dressed \n gay 
and expensive livery. The result was that his funds soon became 
exhausted and his effects were seized upon and sold by his creditors, 
who, in addition, obtained a warrant for his person. For a time he 
escaped his pursuers by taking shelter in the Abbey Sanctuary of 
Holyrood, where he would study and write in his rooms for 


sixteen hours a day, robed only in his bhirt and morning gown, 
with a green veil over his eyes, which were' usually weak and 
inflamed. Sunday was the only day he ventured over the Strand 
which divided the Sanctuary from the gay outside world, in 
which Heron liked to bask in the sunshine of freedom for a brief 
space and forget his misery and misfortunes. He lingered once 
too long among his more free fellow-men, and was arrested and 
lodged in jail, where he lay for several months. His friends 
suggested that he should write a history of Scotland to liquidate 
his debts, the publishers agreeing to pay him three guineas a sheet. 
The first volume of this history was written in jail, but his 
creditors agreed that if Messrs Morrison, the publishers, would 
guarantee them fifteen shillings in the pound, the copyright to be 
held by them as security, they would set him at liberty. Heron, 
though highly imprudent, was honest, and honourably completed 
the work in six volumes. It is eleganily written, and probably 
unrivalled by any other publication in the same field, except the 
more erudite work of George Buchanan. The first volume was 
published in 1793, and completed at the rate of one volume 
■every year. About this time he published A Journey through the 
Westerti Parts of Scotland — a work which was greatly appreciated 
by the Galloway antiquarian, and indeed is still regarded as an 
interesting production. Then came A T(>pographica! Account of 
Scotland, Extracts of ECegant Literature, A New and Complete 
System of Universal Geography in two volumes octavo. He was 
also employed by Sir John Sinclair to superintend the publica- 
tion of his Statistical Account of Scotland. He also wrote 
a short life of Robert Burns, with whom he had a personal 
acquaintance. In Burns's " Epistle to Dr Blacklock,'" dated 
1 7 89, the Poet thus lampoons Heron for the non-delivery of a 
letter to that gentleman which was entrusted to him : — 

" The ill-thief blaw the Heron south, 
And never drink be near his drouth, 
He tauld niysel' by word o' mouth 

He'd tak' my letter ; 
I lippen'd to the chiel in truth, 

And Ijade nae better. 


Rut ahlins, lionest Master Heron 
Had at the time some dainty fair one, 
To ware his theolofric care on, 

And holy study ; 
And, lir"d o" sauls to waste his lear on, 

K"en iricd the body." 

As we have already said, Heron had a strong, vindictive, and 
ungovernable temper, and there is a strong presumption that he 
avenged himself on the dead Poet in the " Life " he wrote. Far 
too much importance has been attached to the fact that Heron 
was a contemporary and the Poet's first biographer. Reading 
between the lines there is ground for suspicion that Heron is 
grossly inaccurate in some of his statements. P'or instance : — 

"Foolish young men, such as writers, apprentices, young surgeons, 
merchants, clerks, and excisemen flocked eagerly about him, pressing him ta 
drink, so that they might enjoy his wicked wit ; and when his friend Nichol 
came to visit him at Dumfries, they <lrank together till they were as dead 
drank as ever Silenus was. " . 

"The morals of the town," he continues, "were in consequence of it 
becoming so much the scene of public amusement, not a little corrupted, and 
though a husband and a father, poor Hums did not escape suffering by the 
general contamination in a manner I forliear to describe." 

Even in the beginning of the twentieth century, when the 
population of Dumfries is probably more than double what it was 
in Burns's day, one wonders where the army of young writers, 
surgeons, merchants, clerks, and excisemen is to be found, unless 
in the imagination of a similarly gifted writer. Doubtless 
Heron was an accomplished scholar, but he was no match 
for the keen satire and rapartee of Burns. Hence it is 
highly probable that his method of revenge was to depict the 
Poet's character in a lurid light, and conceal the object he had in 
view by a wail of counterfeit compassion. This was eminently 
characteristic of the man ; he was jealous and revengeful, con- 
sequently his friendships were generally of brief duration. His 
letter to the Literary Fund reflects a man who, after having lived 
his life in persistent defiance of every principle of temperance and 
foresight, and felt that he was hoplessly vanquished, whines and 
whimpers for tl:e compassion and assistance of his stronger and 


■more prudent fellow-mortals. Heroti, in his- later days, was a 
typical example of the confirmed dipsomaniac who has lost his 
moral balance^ and bade good-bye to principle and respectability. 
■Obviously this was not the man to sit in judgment on Burns. 
Yet his characterisation of the Poet has entered into the weft and 
woof of nearly all subsequent biographies. Moreover, Heron's 
own dissolute habits were so well known that the presumption is 
that he unduly exaggerated the failings of Burns as a set-off 
against his own. As a matter of fact Heron's statements are 
negatived by a reputable Burns contemporary, in the person of 
Mr Gray, the Rector of Dumfries Grammar School. The 
impression Gray's pen-and-ink picture conveys to most minds is 
that it is more consistent with real facts than the tavern 
brawler so picturesquely outlined by Heron. If the fool is to be 
judged according to his folly, poor Heron suffered more in his life- 
time than ever Burns did, and since his death both works and 
author have been condemned to a neglect and oblivion their 
merits scarcely deserve. It is but justice to Heron to say of his 
published works that they do not convey an adequate idea of his 
accomplishments, natural and acquired. The greater number 
of them were written for bread or to pay his debts, and their 
subjects were chosen by booksellers. His style, though frequently 
•declamatory and pompous, is often elegant and animated. In 
addition to the works already mentioned, he produced, in 1798, 
a play entitled " St. Kilda," which was hissed off the stage for 
its coarse and indecent wit in the presence of its author. 
Stung to the quick by this unexpected reverse of fortune, he 
hurried home to his apartments, and took to his bed for several 
days, but he still hugged the delusion that this play was a masterly 
production, which had been wrongly condemned by the prejudice 
and malignity of the dunces. Nor would he be deterred from 
publishing it ; but the public refused to accept it at its author's 
exaggerated estimate, and it fell from the press still-born. Heron 
also wrote verses for the magazines ; and he sketched the plan of 
an extended poem entitled the " Schoolmaster," but he did not 
live to complete it. In 1799 he removed to London, where he 


engaged in various kinds of literary work, and, at the request of 
the English Government, he edited a newspaper in the French 
language for circulation amongst the Royalists in France. More- 
over, he was employed by several newspapers as Parliamentary 
reporter, but no sooner did he earn a little money than he 
squandered it in dissipation, frequently betraying the confidence 
of his patrons. 

The result was that he was constantly rendering himself less 
capable of successfully grappling with his debts and difficulties. 
Finally he was thrown into Newgate prison for debt, from 
whence he dispatched his famous letter to the Literary 
Fund, which is quoted by Isaac Disraeli in his " Calamities 
and Quarrels of Authors." Disraeli concludes by saying 

that '' the fate of Heron is the fate cf hundreds of authors by 
profession in the present day — of men of some literary talent who 
can never extricate themselves from a degradmg state of poverty." 
Genius can scarcely be claimed for Robert Heron, but few of his 
contemporaries in any branch of literature possessed his learning 
and talent, and perhaps none were more the victims of their own 
folly. Deprived of his liberty and broken in health and spirit. 
Heron was removed to the hospital connected with the Newgate 
prison, where he died in April, 1807, at the age of forty-two. 
Only those who know the solitary wilds which surround the birth- 
place of Robert Heron and can form an adequate conception of 
the Arcadian simplicity of his youthful days can realise the tragedy 
of his dissolute and wasted life. 

WM. M'lLWKAriH. 


THE Brig proper consists of four beautifully shaped 
segmental arches, each from 52 to 53 feet span, three 
massive piers of 15 feet in thickness with triangular cutwaters 
and heavy land abutments on either bank. It rises 27 feet 
above high-v.ater mark, and the tidal fall is about 8 feet. The 
width of the Brig footway averages 12 feet between the parapets, 
and the steeply sloping roadways that at the south end between 
houses gives the Brig and approaches an approximate length of 
over 500 feet; but the Brig proper between the abutments is 255 
feet long. About the Brig there is nothing mechanical either 
in the setting out of the work or in the building, and it has all 
that indescribable charm of humanness which is a distincti\e 
feature of all old work. For instance, no two arches or cut- 
waters are exactly similar /and the northmost arch, the last built, 
is two feet less in height than the others. None of the arches 
spring too accurately from the piers, and there is that delightful 
honesty of procedure manifested throughout the work, showing 
so frankly that where a pier and its lower arch stones had been 
built four inches overmuch to one side and the variation dis- 
covered, the builders accepted the fact and laid the next arch 
course four inches over and into the true line. The verv spur 
stones of the piers' bases vary, and one of them has on its upper 
surface a large incised heart. 

This, then, is the Brig w^e set out to preser\e with all its 
curves, and twists, and settlements, that when the work should 
be completed few might know it had been touched at all ; more- 
over, we desired that each separate movement of the fabric might 
be preserved and clearly shown on its face. The resolution of 


rhe public meeting msliiuned " that all work falling to be done 
shall ha\e for its object the preservation of the existing fabric 
as far as possible in its entirety, and shall interfere as little as 
possible with its outward aj)pcaranre, construction, or form." 
The south arch, therefore, was retained, because the engineer 
was able lo make it as secure and strong in its existing shape as 
it would be if it had been taken down and rebuilt. Further, had 
it been taken down, it is safe to say that not 10 per cent, of its 
stones could possibly have been reused. Mr Wilson early 
recognised the possibilities of the heavy piers and cutwaters, and 
at once {)roceeded to utilise them ; but before pitting through 
their middle he required first to ensure the stability of the arches, 
and to that end the outer joints of their spandril walls had to 
be securely and deeply pointed with pure cement to resist the 
great after pressure of forced grouting from within. In so 
pointing we added to the cement a little fine gravel, keeping also 
the cement w-ell back from the face of each weather-beaten stone, 
and bedding small })ieces of old slate in the more open joints, 
closely following in this — as in all else — the original work. 
Moreover, in jminting, each separate stone or slate bedding-in 
was separately j)ointed all round, in order that the weather- 
beaten surface texture of the Brig might, as far as possible, be 
preserved. The outer casing of the Brig having now been made 
secure against the pres.sure of the cement grout to be pumped 
into the fabric from within, the restoration proceeded arch by 
arch, and pier by pier successively, beginning at the south end. 
Trenches three feet wide were first cut across the roadway 
immediately abo^•e the south ai)utment and its complementary 
pier; these trenches were cut through tlie sand filling-in of the 
arch haunches and piers, strongly bratticed as they were sunk, 
carried downward to the solid masonry of the piers, and filled 
with concrete. Thereafter the sand between the old outer 
spandril walls was removed, the interstices between the rough 
upper faces of the arch stones carefully cleaned out and filled in 
with cement, and a 9 in. concrete covering laid over all. Follow- 
ing this work a longitudinal central spandril wall 26 ft. in 

thickness was built of concrete in the centre. line of each arch. 
The inner joints of the outer spandril walls having been also 
picked out were grouted with pure cement under air pressure of 
from 20 lb. to 30 lb. per square inch. At a much later period 
in the operations concrete jack arches were carried from the side 
to the centre spandril walls, thus forming a continuous concrete 
under-roadway, upon which was spread a specially prepared 
impervious coating of rock-building composition to within 1 in. 
of the outer edge of the parapet walls, and upon this coating a 
layer of sand, in which the roadway setts were laid. 

The Brig was now ready for the more dangerous work of 
underpinning. From between the 3 ft. transverse concrete walls 
already sunk above the piers and carried down to their solid 
stone work the sand hearting was removed, and the old external 
walls were grouted under pressure; thereafter an 8 ft. by 4 ft. 
shaft was sunk through the stone heart of each pier and down- 
ward through the clay 9 ft. below the oak cradles. A 12 in. 
concrete floor was laid, a powerful electric motor centrifugal 
pump brought into operation, and the mining beneath the piers 
to their outward faces commenced. As these mines, each roughly 
about 3 ft. wide, were foot by foot driven, they were strongly 
timbered, and cement grout forced upward through the tem- 
porary boarded roof into the old stone foundations, which some- 
times fell out like a ruckle of old stones into the pit in the more 
dilapidated piers, sometimes from as much as 2 ft. to 3 ft. above 
the oak cradling, which cradling it was unfortunately found neces- 
sary largely to cut away. The underpinning of blue brick in 
cement was then built upon a concrete foundation, and in the 
brickwork several 2 in. iron j)ipes were laid for dealing more 
easily with seeping water, l-ut also because through these pipes 
cement grout could afterwards be forced into the interior of the 
brick underpinning. As the temporary timber roofs were 
reached they were removed, and against the smooth face of the 
cement grout pre\iouslv forced in the brick underpinning was 
wedged up and grouted solid under high pressure. This pro- 
cedure was afterwards successivelv and successfully carried out 


in each of the 20 mines or undL-rpinuinij; stMions tif each pier 
and the corresponding 12 sections of the abutments. 1 lu-rc was 
no subsidence of the structure, not even a single crack in the 
outer superstructure; nay more, not one f)f the original cracks 
in the external stonework oi)enetl by a fraction, save at one 
point in the east cutwater of the north pier, where it was 
infinitesimal — and it is to be remembered that in this pier there 
was one large old rent 5 in. wide, and also that into a cavity f)f 
the pier one could work one's whole arm up to the elbow. As 
an instance of one of the many difficulties incidental to the 
carrying out of the work, from one mine in the south pier the 
sinkers were driven out for nearly three continuous weeks by the 
inrush of water, which at full tide was \ery great, and even at low- 
water the mine was nearly always full. Tn several of the mines, 
looking from within one could at low water see between the Brig 
cradle and the boulder clay the blue sky of heaven, so much of 
the ri\er bed had been washed away from the pier foundations, 
and it was literally inch by inch that way was made by damming 
out the water till the underpinning had Ijeen completed. Often 
day after day at low water, when the river and wcaUicr permitted, 
2 in. boards, <jverlapping or as sheaths, were driven into the 
river bed outside the piers, and the space between packed with 
clay, grouted with cement, or cement in bags, packed round, and 
as one hole was stojjped another developed. Patience, resource, 
and deliberation in the end prevailed, but there was none the 
less many an anxious hour for those in charge. 

Arcii.^oi.ogicai. Work. 
In May, 1909, the engineering o])crati()ns were sufficiently 
advanr-ed to permit a serious beginning with the arch?eological 
work. The masonry of each of the three piers, from the splayed 
stone base upward to nearly the corbel springer of the arches, 
had been at various times refaced with stone or brick work. It 
was mainly patchwork, and the regular courses of the original 
work had been wholly ignored. Moreover, many of the later 
facing stones had not been ])ro])erly botulprl into the masom-v of 


the piers. The west nose of the south cutwater had, in its 
lower courses, sunk about five inches, and the space between 
the oversailing upper courses which had remained in position 
filled in with stone patching and roman cement. Upon removing 
the fractured stones the depo.sit of fine river mud was seen to 
penetrate for a distance of 2 ft. or 3 ft. inward — in another pier 
as much as 6 ft. — and this mud deposit, with the rotten lime, had 
effectually checked the flow of cement grout driven under 
pressure from within the piers. Structurally, therefore, it was 
necessary to clear away all such mud, rotted lime, and fractured 
facing stones wherever found, and as the latter were almost 
wholly new and practically only patchwork they were archa^o- 
logically valueless. After rebuilding with brick and cement 
outward from the solid portion of the piers to the new stone 
facings, which were built on the original lines, and using therein 
any old stones found, the whole was grouted with cement under 
high pressure, and in order to follow and ascertain the rise and 
movement of the cement within the piers open joints were left 
between certain of the facing stones and closed as the cement 
rose. When the cement had sufficiently consolidated fresh grout 
at full pressure was forced in to make up any space lost by 
consolidation, also to wedge hard against all upper work and 
solidly fill in all open sjxaces. After the piers the abutments 
were similarly treated. The fractured portions of the arch 
stones were then cut out, from never less than nine inches to 
the extent of fracture, new stone of identical size inserted and 
clamped to the old bv lead dowels run into the inter-sections ; a 
V channel being also cut into the top of the stones, through which 
chaniiel li(juid cement was pumped in, thus solidly binding all 
new and old work together. The spandril walls, where loosened 
from their backing, were treated in a somewhat similar fashion. 
When within comparatively recent years the roadway level was 
altered and straightened from the old curvatures, caused by the 
movement of the arches, the original side gutter channelling was 
then also broken off, or torn out from beneath the parapet, thus 
materiallv decreasing its stability. The joints were badly worn 


iind so seriously decayed that tlie Ayr and the east parapet over- 
hung outward nearly nine inches. The footings and walls, there- 
fore, required rebuilding, so the old side guttering and gargoyles 
were renewed, and the parapets carefully taken down in short 
lengths and rebuilt against standardised rods to their old lateral 
curvature. A two-inch joggle channel was cut in the beds and 
joints of each of the old stones and grouted with cement, and all 
possible old stones were re-used. Where old stones were very 
much worn away the joints were bedded in with hard red tiles 
pointed with cement, so that the old work might be readily 
distinguishable from the new, but the pointing was done differ- 
ently from that of the outside walls, because weather-worn joints 
were here forbidden, and the wall surfaces had to be kept as 
even as possible. For this reason all cement joints were made 
V shaped, the apex being of course outward. Unfortunately 
from an archaeological standpoint, cobble stones were prohibited 
in the roadway, but small rough granite setts, with wide joints, 
were used, in order to repeat as far as possible the texture and 
scale of the parapet walls. The excavations at the north end of 
the Brig disclosed an early roadway of cobble stones and roughly 
built guttering, from 12 to 18 inches lower than the present 
roadway, and with a more steeply inclined slope. The lower 
walls of the old triangular toll or guard-house were also exposed, 
and it may be noted that this chamber with its deep foundation 
w^alls all the way up was built against, and not with, the earlier 
abutment wall of the Brig. The east foundation of the arched 
gateway was followed downward for over 10 feet without reach- 
ing its bottom, but the corresponding west foundation had 
altogether disappeared. All these remaining portions of old 
work have been carefully preserved exactly as found, and for 
their better preserAation enclosed by an iron railing. In the 
Brig parapets have been retained the square holes in the wall 
stones and copes, wherein rested the later toll-beams or barriers. 
As little as possible of the original work of the Brig has been 
touched, and any new work or insertions essential for its mainten- 
ance have followed as closelv as modern work mav the lines of 


the old. Several mason's marks were found, and of these care- 
ful impressions were taken and afterwards tabulated. 

It was difficult at first to break the masons working on the 
Brig from these characteristics of modern work, impersonally 
hewn stones and mechanically plump and level building. The 
old curves and twists of the Brig soon, however, made their 
power felt, and the workmen gradually found that there was 
more beauty in the old slightly cambered and full line than in 
the one absolutely straight from start to finish. When once 
they realised that preservative operations cannot be pushed or 
worked out as is a contract job, they settled down to the order of 
things wherein craftsmen and not merely operatives are required, 
very many taking a most keen interest in the proceedings. 

Now that the Brig is finished the retrospect is not unsatisfac- 
tory, although there is little doubt that in the town of Ayr the 
preservation of the Brig did not commend itself to many. In 
origin and essence it was based largely upon sentiment, upon 
historic reverence and archaeological regard. It did not and 
does not appeal to utilitarian instincts, and whatever of material 
value it may hold belongs of necessity to other generations, when 
men shall more clearly see 'and understand also its intrinsic 
worth. But for one or two staunch friends of the Brig in the 
Town Council the work would never have gone through, and in 
Mr J. B. Ferguson of Balgarth, then a councillor, the Brig 
^found a warm and fitting friend, for his interests are largely 
centred in Alloway. His home was for long Doonholm, where 
William Burnes worked as gardener, and on near land wa.s 
built the " auld clay bigging " wherein the poet was born. Mr 
H. R. Wallace, of Busby, a descendant of the Scottish patriot, 
also stood strongly for the brig from the very first day. 


(In ilie Glasgow Herala). 

HI-: AULi) HRic; w avr. 


ON Friday, 29th July, 1910, ihc sijecially invited parly met 
in the Carnegie Library, and at noon they marched to 
the north end of the Brig, the procession being headed by Lord 
Roseberv. Provost Hunlir. Mr R. A. Oswald of Auchencruive, 
and Mr P. A. Thomson, the Town Clerk, and following them 
came the town officers, whose coats of red and (juaint headgear 
j)rovided the only note of colour, if we except a huge umbrella, 
on the cover of which there was a scroll indicating that the 
Mauchline Jolly Beggars were represented in the procession. 
The company included civic and county dignitaries and repre- 
sentatives of Burns Clubs. The ceremony at the Brig was not 
of long duration, the ]jrinci])al speeches being reserved for a 
subsequent gathering in the Town Hall, where Lord Rosebery 
and Air Oswald had the freedom of the Burgh of Ayr conferred 
upon them. At the Bridge tlie ceremony was brief. Provost 
Hunter, in accepting the trust, tendered to Mr Oswald, as Chair- 
man, and to the other members of the Preservation Committee, 
the best thanks of the Council for their continuous labours during 
the past three years. The work had been a feat of no ordinary 
merit, and reflected the highest credit on the Committee, on Mr 
Wilson, and on Mr Morris. Ayr had been given the sobriquet 
of "The Auld Toon." She would have forfeited her right to 
such a title had she allowed her Auld Brig to be demolished. 
(Applause.) They were there to congratulate themselves on 
having successfully negotiated the last fence in connection with 
the Auld Brig, this " ghaist alluring edifice," as Burns had called 
it, "whose wrinkled arches," thev could see, had been main- 

tained partly by preserving, partly by restoring, and partly by 
rebuilding. The preserving and restoring had been done at the 
expense of a very widely scattered company of loyal Scotsmen 
and admirers of our National Bard, who looked upon this Brig 
as the finest monument they had to his memory. The rebuilding 
would, it was hoped, be paid for partly out of the Templeton 
Bequest, and a considerable portion of the bequest would remain 
in trust to meet future rebuilding when such became necessary. 
But honour must be given where honour was due, and they could 
not pass on without a word of praise to the worthy builders of 
the Brig. Dead and forgotten those six centuries or more, their 
work still remained to put to shame the more transitory work 
which was the outcome of the hurry and bustle of this twentieth 
century. (Applause.) 

Dean of Guild Meikle presented Lord Rosebery with a silver 
key to unlock the bar. 

Lord Rosebery, having accepted the key, said: — Mr 
Provost, until I arrived on this red platform I was under the 
impression that the Bridge was to be opened in perfect silence. 
All functions, I think, are bqst performed with as much silence 
as possible, and I was quite prepared to abide b) that agree- 
ment ; and after the speech that you have delivered no words are 
necessary from me. I congratulate Ayr not merely on a great 
restoration, but on the prevention of a great desecration. 
(Applause.) It was with incredulity and with horror that the 
great mass of Burns worshippers throughout the world heard that 
there was any idea under any circumstances to tamper with this 
immemorial Bridge. Fortunately, owing to the enterprise and 
energy mainly of Mr Oswald and Mr Morris, that desecration has 
been averted, and I think we may hope and believe that as long 
as the poet's works live so long will the Auld Brig stand as a 
testimony to him for ever. (Loud applause.) 

His Lordship then, amidst cheers, unlocked the bar and 
declared the Bridge re-opened. The company passed over from 
the north to the south end of the Bridge, and then proceeded to 
the Town Hall, where the ceremonv of conferring the freedom 


took place. The c-rowd whiiii had j^atheied at the soulh end 
then streamed across tlic newly opened structure. 

Thf. Fref.dom ("krkmonv. 

The ceremony of i)resenlinfj; the freedom of the Burgh to 
Lord Rosebery and Mr C)s\vald took place in the Town Hall 
immediately afterwards. Proxost Hunter presided o\er a xery 
large and representative audience, admission being by ticket, and 
the platform party, in addition to the burgesses-elect, included 
the Earl of Glasgow, the Earl of Stair, Viscount Kelburn, Sir 
Charles Dalrymple, Bart. ; Sir James Bell, Bart. ; Sir Matthew 
Arthur, Bart. ; Sir William Bilsland, Bart. ; Mr George 
Younger, M.P.: Mr W. P. Beale, M.P. ; Sheriff Lorimer, 
Sheriff Shairp, the Rev. Dr Dykes, Major Julian Oswald, Mr 
James Kennedy of Doonholm, Mr J. G. A. Baird of Muirkirk, 
Mr R. F. MacEwan of Bardrochat, Mr Walter NeiLson of Ewan- 
field, Mr Robert Knox of Ladykirk, Dean of Guild Meikle, 
ex-Deacon-Convener Kirkwood, Mr F. Harcourt Kitchin, Mr 
James A. Morris, Mr T. W. Macintyre, Mr Wm. Robcrts<^)n, Mr 
James P. Hay, Mr David Cooper. Mr Duncan M'Xauglit. J. P. ; 
Mr Thomas Amos, M.A. ; Mr W . S. Wilson, and Mr P. A. 
Thomson, the Town Clerk. 

Provost Hunter said it was most fitting that Lord Rosebeiv 
should give the finishing touch to the restoration of this ancient 
monument to the Poet, as it was very largely due to his efforts 
that they had it with them that day. (Applause.) They had 
asked him to go with tlieni one mile, and, following Bible pre- 
cept, he had gone with them twain. This was not the only occa- 
sion on which his Lordship had assisted the municipality. 
(Hear, hear.) They did not look upon him as a stranger, but 
they wished to bind him still more closely to their ancient burgh 
by making him a burgess. (Loud applause.) King William the 
Lion granted a charter to Ayr in 1202, and also ronfcrrcd on the 
community all the lands between the rivers Ayr and Doon ff)r a 
considerable distance inland as a Common Grxifl. Their pre- 
decessors had carefullv handed down the charter, which was 

believed to be the only one of that date still in existence, hut the 
lands and other property had not been so carefully conserved. 
(Laughter.) However, there was one pri\ilege which had been 
guarded most jealously, and that was the freed')m of the burgh. 
(Applause.) During the last century it had only been conferred 
on six different occasions. The recipients numbered eight in all. 
Four of the recipients were local gentlemen. Two of them. 
Lords Cowan and Ardmillan, had attained eminence in the law. 
The other two occupied positions of distinction in our Australian 
colony. Sir Thomas M'llwraith was Premier of Queensland, 
and the Hon. John M'llwraith was Lord ^L^yor of Melbourne. 
The other recipients were Louis Kossuth, the Hungarian patriot ; 
General Grant, the illustrious soldier and President of the United 
States ; Sir William Arrol, who had become a townsman, and 
whose achievements were too well-known to need mentioning : 
and Dr Andrew Carnegie, who had spent so much to foster 
education. When it became known that Lord Rosebery had so 
kindly agreed to officiate at the re-opening of the Auld Brig, 
there was a unanimous desire to acknowledge in some form the 
keen interest he had all along t;fken in everything pertaining to 
our National Bard. (Applause.) It was agreed that this was a 
most fitting opportunity for the people of the land of Burns to 
testify their love and admiration for one who had guided the 
destinies of our great Empire. (Loud applause.) L had been 
given to his Lordship from early manhood to lead the Empire in 
the pathway of reform. It might be said of him, as had been 
said of Kossuth, " that he desired rather to reform and improve 
existing institutions and adapt them to an age of higher civilisa- 
tion than that in which they were first devised than to see those 
institutions entirely removed." (Hear, hear.) They looked on 
him as Scotland's greatest orator. (Loud applause.) During 
all the thirty years past when his Lordship had spoken an Empire 
had listened. (Applause.) His words were sufficiently ornate 
to appeal to the imaginative and snthciently logical to convince 
the reasoning. They honoured him for his many gifts and 
graces. (Applause.) 


The 'r<,)\vii CU'ik .it'lerwards read ihc huii;ess tickrl, and the 
Provost, ill handing it to his Lordship, said that it was his pleas- 
ing duty, as representing the Town Council of Ayr, to ask him 
to accept this document, and tor its safe kee])iiig lie presciitetl 
him with a silver casket, the plinth of which made from one 
of the oak beams which formed part of the cradle which tiad 
supported the Brig for these six centuries. (Ai)plause.) 

Lord Roseberv, on rising to accej)t the freedom of the 
burgh, was loudly cheered. He said: — Mr Provost and fellow- 
burgesses of Ayr, you say tiuite truly, Mr Provost, that you could 
confer no higher honour on anyone than the freedom of vfiur 
ancient burgh, and I heartily appreciate the distinction that \nn 
have conferred u])on me this day. 1 am especially honoured by 
the recollection, by the recital, rather, of my colleagues in the 
freedom, dead or living, so few and so illustrious, when 'he 
antiquity of the burgh is considered. I cannot but be aware also 
that to-day 1 am, a little, receiving it under false pretences, 
because I feel that men like Mr Oswald and Mr Morris and Dr 
\\'allace deserve the distinction, for it is a great distinction of 
having worked to ])reser\e the old Bridge, much more than I do. 
But honour as we know d(jes not al\\a\s go to where it is due, 
and I am content to accept, though with some misgiving, the gift 
that you are good enough to make to me without anahsing too 
closely my claims to it. Let me, however, say, Mr Provost, that 
_\ou have not made the task of accepting it any easier b\ the 
eulogy which you have been kind enough to pass on what Mm are 
pleased to term my eloquence. (Laughter.) When an audience 
is told that something very elo(]uent is going to l)e said, and they 
hear a stumbling, stammering, stuttering sort of s])eaker, die 
resentment and the disappointment are much greater than they 
ought to be. If, cm the other hand, it is said--" I am going to 
give the freedom to J.ord Rosebcr), and he has only one defect; 
he cannot speak for nuts " — (laughter) — I might have had some 
chance of graciously accepting the gift. Mr Provost, you made 
an interesting enumeration of the names of the freemen, of the 
illustrious freemen, who are inscribed upon vour roll. I ai)])re- 

■ 39 

•ciate the names (jf the freemen. I appreciate all their merits, 
but their very merits make more conspicuous the absence of one 
man who ought to be on that roll. Mr Oswald and I are here 
to-day receiving the freedom in a vicarious sense, because we feel 
that behind us there :h- always the august shade of him whom 
you have reallv come to honour — the poet Robert Burns. 
(Applause.) Tt must be a source of lasting and poignant regret 
to the freemen of Ayr that the} did not take the opportunity, 
which they had so amply, of enrolling Robert Burns among the 
names of their honorary freemen. Dumfries, which has his body 
and his tomb, did make him a freeman. I do not know if it 
would be possible for you, Mr Provost, under any municipal Act, 
bv anv retrosj)ective performance, to try to place the name of 
Robert Bin-ns upon \our roll. Now, there are two counties in 
Scotland which claim a pre-eminency of the memory and a pro- 
perty m Burns. They are Ayrshire and Dumfriesshire. Dum- 
fries, as I lia\e said, saw his last melancholy years ; they have 
the record of his agony and his death ; they preserve his body. 
All pilgrims trom across the sea or from his native land who wish 
to do honour to Burns cannot fail to go to Dumfries. Those 
who wish to have the best part of Burns, to visit the region in 
which he spent the best years of his life, must go to Ayrshire. 
(Applause.) It was Ayrshire, it is Ayrshire, that has the nobler 
part of Burns. It was Ayrshire that witnessed his birth, wit- 
nessed his youth, witnessed the best of his manhood. It was 
there he spent the first 28 years of his life. So far as I know. 
Burns did not lea\e Ayrshire during all those years. It was 
there that was seen the first dawning, and, indeed, the full 
supremacy of his genius. It was there that he first faced the 
world ; there that he filled his mind, there that he ploughed, at 
£7 a year, better than any ploughman of his day, and there that 
he looked out first on the universe with those marvellous eyes, 
instinct with human passion — passion of piety, poetry, and love 
and independence. All these events are the property of Ayr- 
shire. (Applause.) It was from Ayrshire that he drew his first 
inspiration. It was Coila whom he always hailed as his presid- 


inj; inmph. The most reniaikahle letter vwy written by Burns, 
or I might ahnost say by aiixluulx else, one of the best letters in 
existence, is his letter to Dr John Moore, autlior of "Zekico," 
in which he sketches with a master pen, and apparently not alto- 
gether without the imagination which is inherent both in 
biographers and poets— in which he traces with a master pen his 
life in Ayrshire. I recommend c\erybody in this hall who has 
not read that letter not to go to his bed to-night without having 
perusetl that masteri)iece of autobiographical description. And 
what is much more, ladies and gentlemen, is this— it is not 
merely that Ayrshire is the place where Burns composed his 
masterpieces and where he lived until he was 28 years of age, 
but it was very nearly i)eing the only part of Scotland in which 
he was fated ever to live. He was \ery nearly — he was all but 
leaving for Jamaica when something turned and arrested his 
steps, and had that l)een so, so far as we am forecast a life that 
was not lived, he wt)uld have divided his whole life between Ayr- 
shire and Jamaica. Ayrshire woidd have been the only spot of 
Scottish soil which he had ever trodden. How strange it would 
have been if that had happened. I know that every year in 
January we celebrate the birthday of Burns, and we celebrate 
Burns on every possible occasion. Vou are wrong in thinking, 
Mr Provost, that I have ever proposed " The Immortal 
Memory," because I have alwa\s chosen occasions which are 
not postprandial to honour the memory of Burns. It was in the 
calmness of noon or in the earl\ morning that T ha\-e unveiled 
statues or done the like. But tb.e Burns ban(|uet, with its inter- 
minable toasts, interminable songs, and inlcnninable speeches, is 
a sort of penance that I never fell bound to undergo in the course 
of my life. (Laughter.) But as I know that they are always 
wanting another toast at the Burns dinner, just one more — • 
(laughter) — I do suggest t(j them a toast - the memory of a man 
to whom admirers of Burns owe almost mcn-e than anv other 
man who lived — I mean the Idind jxjet Blacklock, of Edinburgh. 
Burns would have gone to Jamaica beyond the shadow of a 
doubt had it not been for a letter from that blind poet Blacklock 


expressing warmest admiration for his poems, and expressing a 
wish of seeing and introducing him to literary society in Edin- 
burgh, and therefore I have never been able to understand how 
it is that we honour so many persons in connection with Burns, 
even Buego, the engraver of his portrait, and every human being 
who had anything to do with him. yet we omit the one great 
benefactor of Scotland connected with Burns — I mean the poet 
Blacklock, who prevented his going to the West Indies. 
(Applause.) What woidd ha\e happened haS he gone to the 
West Indies? He was to go as overseer or liook-keeper, one of 
the most odious situations, I suppose, that could be filled by 
mortal man. (Laughter.) I am not speaking of book-keeping 
as understood in commercial circles, but as overseer as under- 
stood on a slave plantation. We should have had indeed one 
immortal volume of verse. Nothing could ever have deprived us 
of that. But could we, do you think, ever have had anything 
more? Do you think, amid the conditions of sla\ery and the 
tropical climate of Jamaica, ancj the associations of life there 
that you may find admirably depicted in the work of another 
Scottish genius of whom we know nothing but the name, Michael 
.Scott, but which you may find admirably depicted in '' Tom 
Cringle's Log," that admirable masterpiece of his — do vou think 
the genius of Burns could have survived? I myself do not. I 
think that far from these barren farms, the two worst in Scot- 
land, on which he had been accustomed to toil — I hope I am 
saying nothing disrespectful to the owners of these farm.s — 
(laughter) — that far from his own barren and ungrateful soil of 
Scotland, amid the tropical luxuriance of Jamaica and amid the 
•degrading conditions of shnerv. together with all the convivial 
associations of that island at that time, I do not for one moment 
believe that we should have heard much more of Burns. It is 
quite true that another Scottish genius of ours, though he was 
-expatriated, Robert I>ouis Stevenson, sent us from the Tropics 
some of the choicest vohmies from his pen. But the conditions 
there were very different from what they were in Jamaica. At 
.any rate, when everybody is trying to write something new about 


Burns. I do su{;i;cst this topic to his (•oiiiiiu'iU.itors an inia};ina- 
tive sketch of what would have hai)])cned if Hums had really 
gone to Jamaica. I think niyself tlial his genius would ha\e- 
evaporated under those conditions; that he indhahly w<nild not 
have lived long, and that we should only have known him hy his 
tirst volume But, of course, he might ha\e taken a differeiu 
line and ri.sen to wealth in the West Indies, as many U'est 
Countrv people did in those days, and he might ha\-e c-ome hack 
and strutted on the Broomielaw as a rum lord, a sugar lord, or a 
tobacco lord, and even then he would ha\e been a totally 
different Burns from the one whom we hallow and remember, f 
mvself am a believer in the fact that his genius could hardly ha\e 
sur\-ived the relaxation of wealth. Poverty [produces master- 
pieces and wealth smothers them. (>Ap])lause. ) \'ou will be 
able to count on your fingers the masteri)ieces ])roduced by ricdi 
people. Vou will find lliat they ha\'e all been written under the 
pre.ssure of i)o\ertv almost all of them ha\e been written under 
the pres.sure of poverty — though I believe Shakespeare became 
the owner of some urban property in his later years. (Laughter.) 
But take one instance. Would Wordsworth ha\e written any 
better than Rogers if Wordsworth liad been as rich as Rogers? 
And my clear conclusion from a very general sur\ey of all the 
great masterpieces of literature is that a genius should not l)e 
wealthy, or he is very likely to see his genius stifled bv the fact. 
Now, gentlemen, I have alwavs sworn that f would never make 
another sjjeech about Burns, and [ am ;ifraid you will think that 
I ha\e to some extent broken my oath on this occasion. But 
honestly I do not think that I can be accused of any deliberate 
perjur\ . because it is so clear that the honour you are paying to 
me to-day is being joaid not to myself in my indi\idual capacitv 
but as an admirer of P)urns, and I cannot hel]) touching on the 
subject that is so dear [o me, well worn though it be. f think 
at anyrate I have pointed out to Burns w(irs]n])pers two new 
features which they might explore, that of gratitude to the bliiul 
poet and the possible career f)f Burns in Jamaica, which may 
lead tr. a not incr)nsiderable addition to Burns literature. 


(Laughter and applause.) Now I said in tlie first part of my 
remarks it was here Burns first looked (JUt on the world with his 
eyes burning with the passions of love, and of faith, of poetry 
and independence. Of poetry I need say very little. He wrote 
here " The Jolly Beggars " and " The Cottar's Saturday Night," 
the two supreme productions of this period of his life, and 
perhaps of his whole life. (Applause.) But I would only ask 
you to note the affluence of genius show^n by Burns writing " The 
Jolly Beggars," which to many of us is his masterpiece — (hear, 
hear) — as a peasant behind the plough in Ayrshire, and then 
tossing it aside as unworthy of being printed, so that it was not 
published until after his death. Many of us would give half of 
our lives to have been able to write "The Jolly Beggars," and we 
should have lost no time in publishing it for the appreciation of 
the world. (Applause.) To Burns it was merely an incident, 
tossed into a drawer and found after his death. That seems to 
me a very striking feature as regards his genius. As regards his 
piety, which I think commentators ,'jf Burns sometimes lose sight 
of in consetjuence of the occasional laxities of his life which he 
pararled with perhaps too great a freedom and frankness, we 
have the testimony of that letter which I have quoted to his 
religious bringing up and his religious creed, and we have the 
supreme testimony of the "Cottar's Saturday Night " to show 
what expression he could give to his faith. And as for love — 
that of course is a delicate subject. (Laughter.) The fact is 
that as far as I can ascertain Burns fell in love with every girl 
he met at that period of his life. (Laughter.) He saw them 
through the eyes of his imagination, and in consequence he 
became enamoured of them all. I really do not know that it is 
much use following them all up, as some of his biographers have 
done, because I imagine that the passion of love with him on 
these occasions was rather an imaginative one than anything more 
definite and practical. I have sometimes wondered, if we could 
see all those ladies whom Burns honoured with such magnificent 
epithets in his impassioned odes, if we should not be a little 
disappointed. (Laughter.) I am ir.clined to think that he saw 

tiuMii with the ^lanmur of his _urral inia^inalinn, and that we, 
without that <;lanii)ur ami without that iiuaj^iuatiou. slmuld be 
i^reatly (Hsai)p()iute(l in tlieir a])i)earani'e. That again is a topic 
which 1 offer to coninieutators of Burns for their forthcc^ning 
annua!. (Laughter.) l-!ut liis in(lei)en(lenee was ])er)ia|)s a less 
notieed but not a less striking ])art of his career than otlier 
passiou-s which 1 ha\e noted. His inde])endence in those days 
he faced the world witli an undaunted front, ])artly from _\outh, 
partly, I think, from ine\])erience. Hi' was afraid of nothing 
and nobodv. The greatest tyrann\- that then existed in these 
isles was the domestic and inquisitorial tyranny exercised by the 
Church in Scotland at that time. It is incredible to us that it is 
not more than one hundred years ago since Biu-ns's landlord, 
Gavin Hamilton, was subjected to the se\erest ecclesiastical 
censures because he hacf ordered his gardener to dig a few 
potatoes on Sunday for dinner, and that there was not an incident 
of life at that time which was not made a subject of in(]tiisition 
.'uid of se\ere in(|uisition, and received eccle.siastical censure. 
Well, that was a reign of terror, and Burns was not afraid to lift 
up his \f)ice and boldly denounce that reign of terror. Those 
blistering satires that he wrote in Ayrshire on tlie persons whom 
he knew or whom he lielieved he knew to be guiltv of hypocrisy 
and cant are the most memorable ])erhaps of all his writings. 
He did iK)t scruj)le. indeed he raised his voice against other 
institutions or b idies whidi he also beliexed to be wanting in 
duty to the ])ul)lic;. He was moved b_\ a birthday o<le to King 
George HI. to write .1 birthday ode of his own to the royal family 
very different in texture and s])irit to tlie ode of the Poet 
Laureate, one of the most remarkable ever addressed, I should 
think, to a roval familv, not ill natin^ed, but good naturedlv 
rebuking them for their shortcomings. He did a thing that was 
even more daring j)erhaps. He addressed the Scottish Members 
of Parliament of his day — (laughter) — pointing out their short- 
comings. T do not know — I see Mr \'ounger here I must 
touch on this subject with delicacy. lUuns thought that Sc(Jttish 
Members thought more of Scotland at the time thev were 


can\-assing their constituencies than when they got to West- 
minster. (Laughter.) He begged them to speak up a little 
more for poor old Scotland at Westminster than they did. 
^Applause.) He thought that more could be done for Scotland 
at Westminster than is done if Scottish members remained faith- 
ful to the pledges they gave at the elections. (Applause.) He 
begged them to be more independent of powerful influences, such 
as those of the Government, and to j)ursue a path unguided by 
the hope of patronage or preferment, and to do their duty to old 
Scotland in spite of all. (Hear, hear.) All these exhortations 
are superfluous now. (Loud applause.) Our Members of 
Parliament are very different now from what they were then. 
(Laughter.) I will not point out to-day the essential points of 
difference. (Laughter.) But I will simply indicate that we have 
the Members whom we desire and deserve. (Laughter.) But if 
these censures, if these attacks on the Church, on the royal 
family, and on the Scottish Members are, as I believe in my soul 
and conscience, superannuated now — certainly as regards the 
Church and the roval familv, and Mr Younger must answer for 
the members himself — I am not quite sure that all Burns's de- 
nunciations are superannuated now. (Hear, hear.) His great 
horror was of anvthing which savoured of hypocrisy and cant, hut 
what he had mainly in his mind then was religious hypocrisv and 
religious cant. Cant survives, though religious hypocrisy and 
cant are but little in fashion now. They do not pay as they did 
then. But are we quite sure that in a\-oiding one kind of cant we 
are absolutelv free from any other? Are we ab.solutely certain 
that our public characters in these days are as free from cant as 
Burns wished them to be ? There are a thousand forms of cant 
which form the dry rot of our country. It is not my task to-day 
to point them out. I might introduce di\ision where I only wish 
to leave a united Ayr behind me. (Laughter.) I do ask you, 
ladies and gentlemen, to applv to yourselves the touchstone of 
Burns's diatribes against cant, and T prophesv for you that you 
will find yourselves none tlie worse for it. Now, Mr Pr()\ost, I 
must apologise for having detained you so long, but when one is 


given the freedom of Ayr <mio cannot but tmich upon Burns, and 
when one touches upon Burns one caiuioi put a check upon 
oneself. As I have said before. I am (luile aware that you are 
only gi\ing us this freedom to-day because we are li\ing admirers 
of Burns, and because you cannot give it to the dead man him- 
self. To speak the honest truth. Binns never seems dead to 
me. Of all dead men he is the most li\ing to me, mucj-i more 
living than many men who to-day are alive. I know no man who 
has impressed his indixidualitv . his \itality so strongly on his 
fellow creatures as man wlio was born here 150 vears ago. 
His blood still courses warm and strong through the veins of 
Scotland. His spirit is abroad in all om- coimtry. and from our 
country it has passed over the world, but its home, its original 
.source, its favourite region is this counlv of Avr, and I trust that 
in the long days to come, when peoj)le remember with shame and 
almost with terror that there was once a risk of the Old Brig 
being demolished, they will also remember in turn their responsi- 
bility, that the comiection between Burns and Avr is indissoluble 
and eternal. (T.oud applause.) 

In introducing Mr Oswald, the Provost said that though 
differing from Lord Roseber) in some respects, he was at one 
with his lordshij) in his lf)ve for the Auld Brig. (Hear, hear.) 
Than Mr Oswald no one had worked more earnestly and success- 
fully in getting the material hel]) necessary to carry on the 
preservation work. They now felt it to be a fitting time to 
express their appreciation of what he had done, but it did not 
begin and end in what he had dune for die lirig. (Applause.) 
The debt was of much longer standing. Both the towh and 
countv owed much to him for wliat he liad done and was still 
doing in their midst. As ('on\-ener of the County he rlisplayed 
great business ability in the conduct of its affairs. He had done 
much for the success of the Ayrshire Agricultural Association. 
A patron of music and art, he had always taken a keen interest 
in their local advancement. He was a director of the County 
Ho.spital and of many other institutions. In asking him to 
become a burgess thev were honouring the burgh. It was the 


unanimous wish of the Council that his name he added along 
with that of Lord Rosebery to the honoured roll. (Loud 

The burgess ticket, which was read by the Town Clerk, was 
then presented to Mr Oswald, the document being placed within 
a casket the exact replica of that presented to Lord Rosebery. 

Mr Oswald, in reply, said it was a very difficult task for him 
to follow I-ord Rosebery, who was perhaps the greatest orator 
that we had at the present time in Great Britain. (Applause.) 
Having referred to the indebtedness of Burns lovers to those who 
had taken principal parts in tlie restoration mo\ement, Mr 
Oswald went on to say that not only had they been met everv- 
vvhere in this countr\ with most liberal subscriptions but all over 
the world, from Canada, from Australia, from Xew Zealand they 
had large sums sent them with e\er\ sort of good wish that the 
Auld Brig should be preserved. (Applause.) It was only the 
other day, looking over the list of subscribers, tliat he realised 
how the admirers of Burns and Burns f.ocieties all o\er the world 
came to the front. Without them he had no hesitation in saying 
they would not have been able to have found the money to carry 
out the work which they had done. (Applause.) Mr Oswald 
also paid a tribute to Lord Rosel)ery's efforts in connection with 
the restoration. 

Lord Rosel)ery and Mr Oswald afterwards signed the 
burgess roll amid aj)j)lause. 

On the motion of Dean of (hiild Mcikle a cordial vote of 
thanks was awarded the Auld Brig Preserxation (leneral Com- 
mittee and the Executive Committee for their work. Mr Walter 
Neilson, Vice-Chairman of the Kxecuti\e, acknowledged. A 
similar compliment was accorded the Chairman on the call of Mr 
George Younger, ^LP., and the proceedings terminated. 

Corporation Luncheon. 
The "youngest burgesses" were afterwards entertained at 
luncheon in the Council Hall. Pro\ost Hunter presided, and 
the croupiers were Bailie Ferguson, Bailie Vincent, Bailie 


Watson, and Dean of Guild Mciklc. T.ord Rosebcrv was seated 
at the Chairman"s right hand, and Mr U. A. Oswald at his left. 
The company numbered about one liundied p;entlemen. After 
the toast of " The King '' had been honoured. 

Provost Hunter said that while they liad no toastdist there 
was a duty whi(di courtesy demanded, and which must on no 
account be omitted. That was to drink the health of their 
youngest burgesses. (Applause.) They had consumated that 
•day an event which would long be remembered in Avr, but 
although the Auld Brig had been restored they need not yet sit 
down to weep, for there were still other worKls to conquer. 
Their Mercat, which was one of the most picturesque in 
the kingdom, had \et to be restored. It was destroyed many 
years ago by the ruthless hands of vandalism, and some of the 
most beautiful carved stones were scattered here and there. In 
preservmg the town's relics of anti(|uity their youngest burgesses 
had set them an e\amj)le wortlry of imitation — (cheers)— and it 
would be but becoming if they made an effort themselves in the 
same direction. (Hear, hear.) He asked them to drink to the 
health of their youngest burgesses. (A])])Iause.) 

Lord Rosebery, in responding, saiil : Mr Pro\(jst and 
gentlemen, — I did not anticij)ate that the pleasure of this 
banquet would be at all imj)aired by jiaving to return thanks 
again ff)r my health, l)ur to-day at this meal I feel that having 
made a very long speech this morning, and my colleague in the 
freedom having made a very short one — (laughter) — I may very 
fairly hand over to him the of returning thanks for us both 
and place ui)on him the brunt of the ])resent proceedings. 
{Laughter.) Of course I quite agree that in all respects but one 
I am inferior to Mr (Oswald on this occasion. He has done 
nmch more for the Brig than I ha\e. He is a good neighbour 
to Ayr. He is locally honoured and respected, and justly. 
But he has not gone through the sacrifices that I have in order to 
be present on this occasion. .\s I came to Olasgow last night I 
bought an evening pai)er, and 1 saw that war was ravaging the 
part of the country which I immediately inhabit — that the Isle of 


May had been captured, Inchkeida had surrendered, the Port of 
Leith was being held Dy the enemy, and Edinburgh itself was 
said to be held to ransom. In these circumstances, although I 
hold several important ofifires in that country, I yet sacrificed 
everything in order to be present to-day. (Laughter and 
applause.) It is very kind of you to applaud my conduct, but I 
am not at all sure that it may not be viewed in a different light 
by my neighbours in the East. (Laughter.) What you appre- 
ciate as devotion to Burns may be characterised by a more igno- 
minious term as a retreat from the enemy in the face of over- 
whelming disaster. (Laughter.) This afternoon I shall learn 
the worst. (Renewed laughter.) For all I know, Dalmeny may 
be the headquarters of the Commander-in-Chief of the invading 
army. I may return to find all the Lothians in the occupation of 
the Blue Army or of the Red Army — I forget which I have to fear 
— (laughter)— but in any case, whatever the disasters may be, 
should they equal those which Russia was compelled to make in 
resisting the French Army in 1812, wli'atever my Lothians may 
be obliged to suffer under the pressure of this foreign invasion, I 
regard myself as having been richly repaid by having been 
present to-day. (Applause.) 

Mr R. A. Oswald, who also responded, said that he was 
again placed in a difficult position. To follow Lord Rosebery 
in his serious mood was difficult, to follow him when he was 
amusing was still more difficult. (Laughter.) He thought they 
had had a very pleasant day and that things had gone extremely 
well. He thanked them most heartily for the way in which they 
had received him and for the kind things which the Provost and' 
other speakers had said. He should always look upon that day 
as one of the happiest and a day of which he should be proud 
foi the rest of his life. (Applause.) 

The proceedings thereafter terminated with the singing of 
" .Auld Lang Syne." 


ON opposite page appears a photogra})hic reproduction of 
the marriage lines of two relatives of the writer who 
were united in the holv bonds of matrimony in the Gorhals of 
Glasgow nigh a hundred years ago. The document, written in 
a clear and excellent hand, attests "that James Grandison and 
Agnes Mitchell, both in this parish, were three times proclaimed 
in the Church here in order to Marriage and no objections 
made." It is dated Gorbals, 31st May, 1813, and signed r)y 
John Wilson, Session Clerk. What brings it into the pages of 
the " Chronicle " is the fact that this John Wilson was no other 
than Burns's "Doctor Hornbook." In a hea\'y and somewhat 
clums_\- hand is added: — " Hutches(Mitown, June 1st, 1813. The 
abo\e i)arties were married by me. — Wm. Thomson, Minr." 
Although a poor penman, this minister was from all accounts 
the esteemed pastor of the old Relief Kirk, now Hutcheson- 
town United Free Church, and still standing at the junction of 
Rutherglen Road and Hospital Street. 

On an evening in 1785 Wilson and Burns, who bv this time 
had entered in company with his brother Gilbert on the occu- 
pancy of Mossgiel Farm, met. it is said, in debate at the 
Masonic Lodge of Tarbolton. ^Vilson was at this time school- 
master in the village, and to eke out his income had started a 
grocery shop, and added simple medicines to his stock. To 
assist their sale he put a placard in his window, intimating that 
" Advice would be gi\-en in common disorders at the shop 
gratis." On the night in question he aired his medical attain- 
ments to such a degree that Burns felt annoyed and irritated. 
He thought the matter over on his night-tramp home to Moss- 
giel, and, according to the testimony of his brother Gilbert, 
read out to him on the following evening his now world- 

renowned "Death and Uoctur Hornbook." which had been 
seemingly forged at one heat. A legend which ai)])ear.s in 
several editions of the Poets works indicates iliat the ridicule 
thrown on Wilson l>y lUniis in this poem caused its subject 
eventually to shut up both shoj) and school and leave the 
village. This, however, is not so, for Mr F. K. Macpherson, 
Scho<.)lhouse, Tarbolton, hi a communication to the " Burns 
Chronicle"' of 1895, states that he finds from reliable docu- 
ments that Wilson was session clerk to Tarlxdton parish as late 
as 1793. He was also secretary to the Tarbolton Lodge from 
8th August, 1782, till sometime in 1787. He wrote many of 
the minutes, and signed two of them as Master pro tempore, and 
a third as M.P.T. It is said that Wilson left Tarbolton in 
consequence of a dispute with the heritors regarding his salary. 

Despite the ridicule showered upon him by Burns 's clever 
satire, his record remains that of a good and worthy man, who, 
after leaving Tarbolton, earnestly prosecuted his work, first as 
master of a "Commercial Academy ' in Buchan Street, 
Gorbals. Glasgow, and thereafter as session clerk of that ])arish, 
occupying this honourable post until his death in his home at 
64 Portland Street, I.aurieston, on 13th January. 1839, at a 
ripe old age. 

There are in the Mitchell Library, Glasgow, two small 
quarto MS. volumes, entitled " Lectures on Moral Philosophy 
delivered at the College of Glasgow. By Mr Arthur. Written 
by John Wilson, Schoolmaster in Tarbolton, in the vear of tjur 
Lord, 1790." These were gifted to the Library by the late 
Mr W. G. Blackic, LL.D., the well-known publisher. The 
Doctor's letter, of date 30 Oct., 1883, which accompanied the 
volumes, and is now neatly attached to one of them, is addressed 
to the late Bailie William Wilson, at that time Convener of the 
Mitchell Library Committee of the Corjjoration. It runs thus: 
— "Some time ago I sent }f)u a few \oluines ])rinted b\ the 
brothers Foulis of this city. To render your collection more 
complete, I now send other two volumes which I discovered a 
few days ago on the back shelf of mv bookcase. Along with 


them I send a contribution to your ' Burns Collection ' two 
vols, of MS. notes of Lectures on Moral Philosophy delivered 
in the University of Glasgow and written (the notes) by John 
Wilson, Schoolmaster of Tarbolton — ' Dr Hornbook.' I knew 
the old gentleman as a boy could an old man, and have taken 
tea in his house. He was then Sess. Clk. of the Gorbals — this 
is a veritable curiosity.'' The penmanship in these books is 
excellent, most clear and legible from beginning to end, and 
the volumes are in good condition. 

Regarding the word "hornbook," the nickname with which 
Burns dubbed the dominie, it may be of interest to quote Dr 
Johnson's brief definition, viz. : — " The first book of children, 
covered with horn to keep it unsoiled." A later and more de- 
tailed description is — "a first book for children, which formerly 
consisted of a single leaf set in a frame, with a thin plate of 
transparent horn in front to preserve it.'' An elaborate work, 
entitled " History of the Horn-Book," in two quarto volumes, by 
Andrew W. Tuer, F.S.A., was published in London by The 
Leadenhall Press, Ltd., 50 Leadenhall Street, E.G., in 1896. 
It is profusely illustrated with a fine series of pictures of horn- 
books of all sorts and sizes. 



A V R A i: L D BRIG. 

List of Suhsckiitions hv Burns Ci-ui!S, Scottish Societies, 
AND Burns Federation. 

Leitli Hums Club (I'resident and Secretary) 

The Tarn o" Shanler Burns Club (President and Secretary) 
Linlithgow Burns Club (President and Secretary).. 
Maybole Burns Club (President and Secretary) 
Selkirk Alpine Club (President and Secretary) 

AUoway Concert, per Duncan Gray 

Fettercairn Burns Club (President and Secretary) 

Paisley and District Ayrshiie Association ... 

Wal.sall Burns CI ul) 

Burns Club, Dunoon ... 

Birmingham Burns Club 

Jolly Beggars, Mauchline (collected in Poosie Nansie's) ... 

Newcastle-on-Tyne Burns Clul) 

Johannesburg Burns Clul) 

Thistle Burns Club 

Burns Social Club of New V'ork 
Darlinjjton Burns Association, Darlington ... 
The Wallsend and District Burns Club 
Dumfries Burns Club ... 
Newton-on-Ayr Burns Club ... 

Shields and District Caledonian Association 

North Berwick Burns Club 

J. C. Chapman Craig and P. Sulley (proceeds of concert 


Dollar Burns Club 

Paisley Burns Club 

Edinburgh Ayrshire Club 

Kilmarnock Bellfield Burns Club 

Caledonian Society, 1'itt.sburg, O.R.C 

Dundee Burns Club 


Kedliill District Scottisli Associalion 

•Govan Fairfield Burns Club 

Gareloclihead Burns Club 

The Residents on the Premier Diamond Mine, Transvaal 

Cape Town Caledonian Society 

Hamilton Burns Clubs (proceeds of lecture) 

Caledonian Benefit Club, Holyoake, Mass., U.S.A. 

Exeter and District Caledonian Society 

Leadville Caledonian Club, Leadville, Colorado, U.S.A. 
■Glasgow & Lanarkshire Association of London ... 

Collected at Burns's Cottage by W. Monaghan 

Edinburgh Pen and Pencil Club, per W. M. Macfarlane... 

Freuchie Lecture Committee 

Gourock Jolly Beggars Burns Club ... 

Johnstone Burns Club 

Wigtown Burns Club 

North Bute Burns Club 

Dairy Burns Club 

Dumfries Burns Club 

East Stirlingshire Burns Club - 

Dollar Burns Club 

Hawick Gallants' Club 

Vale of Alford Burns Club 

Corstorphine Burns Club 

Brechin Burns Club 

Cumnock Burns Club... 

Thornhill Burns Club 

Savannah St. Andrew's Society 

Burns Admirers, Dundee, per Alexander Neish 

Pathhead Ford Burns Club 

St. Andrew's Society, St. Catherine's, Ontario 

Row Burns Club 

Bradford St. Andrew's Society 

Denny and Dunnipace Burns Club 

Greenock Burns Club.. 

Burns Federation 

Airdrie Burns Club 

Larbert Burns Club 

St. Andrew's Society, of Whitby and Pickering, Ontario 

Kilbirnie Rosebery Burns Club 

London Ayrshire Society 

Peterhead Burns Club 






















Birmingham Ruins Cliih 

Edinburgh Burns Chih 

Londdn Robert Burns Chil) ... 

Borthwick Burns Club 

Cupar-Fife Burns Club 

Blackburn Burns Club 

Darnconner Aird's Moss Burns Club 

Girvan Burns Club 

Irvine 15urns Club 

Maybole Burns Club ... 

Kinross " Jolly Beggars ■' Club 

Walkerburn Burns Club 

Beith Burns Club 

London Burns Club 

North Staftbrdshire District Caledonian Society ... 

Auchterarder Junior Burns Club 

Manchester and Salford Caledonian Association ... 

Bonnyrigg Burns Club 

Caledonian Society of Petermaritzburg 

Inches Mountain Daisy Burns Club ... 

Collected at the Burns Gathering at Auchterarder, per James S. 


Musselburgh Federated Burns Club 

Old Kilpatrick Burns Club .. 

Ercildoune Burns Club 

Glendarvel Burns Clul) 

Carlisle Burns Club 

Greenloaning Burns Club ... 

A few Sulwcribers at Burns Celebration in the Conservative Club, 

Perth, per John Mackay 200 

Caledonian Burns Club, Glasgow o 12 6 

St. Andrew's Society, St. John, N.B. 390 

Mossgiel Burns Club, Cowdenbeath... ... ... ... ... 076 

Juniper Green Burns Club ... ... ... ... ... ... 600 

Ayr Burns Club 57 o o 

Burns Club of Lancaster and Columbia 4 13 3 

Western Club, Dundee, collected at Burns .Supper ... ... i 8 6 

Upper Nithsdale Burns Club... ... ... ... ... i 11 6 

A few Scots, Newcastle, Natal, per James llastic... ... ... i 18 o 

A few Scots, Newcastle, Natal, per J. B. Mitchell 070 

Leeds Caledonian -Society ... ... ... ... ... 19 60 

Berwick-on-Tweed Burns Club ... ... ... ... ... 580 

















































4 12 

5 o 

2 O 

3 o 

7 12 
O lO 

9 14 

5 lo 

lO o 

6 5 

5 5 

" Killie Boys " resident in Montreal, per Kilmarnock Staiuiaxi... £2 i 

Liverpool Burns Club... .. ... ... ■ ■ ro 2 

Largs Burns Club ... ... ... ... •. •• i 10 

Kilbirnie Jolly Beggars' Burns Club 

Salt Lake City Thistle Club 

Ninety Burns Club, Edinburgh 

Linlithgow Burns Club 

Newca.stle and Tyneside Burns Club 

•Chester Caledonian Association 

Tranent Twenty-Five Burns Club 

Bristol Caledonian Society 

Prestwick Burns Club... 

Killearn Burns Club ... 

Barrow-in-Furness St. Andrew's Society ... 

Whitburn Burns Club 

Stewartry Burns Club 

Campsie Burns Club 

Sydney Burns Anniversary Club 

Hamilton Junior Burns Club... 

Scottish Thistle Club of Honolulu ... ...^ 

Collected at annual Burns Club Dinner in Melrose, per Ralph 
Dunn, Town Clerk 

Troy Burns Club, New York 

Bathville Burns Club 

Barns o' Clyde Burns Club 

Baillieston Caledonia Burns Club ... 

Bonhill Burns Club 

East London Caledonian Society, Cape Colony ... 

Alloa Burns Club 

Umtali Caledonian Society, Rhodesia 

Newark Caledonian Club, New Jersey, U.S.A. .. 

A few Caledonians in Leicester, per Jolin Gibson, i De Montfort 

Square, Leicester... 
■Collected by A. M. Stewart, 7'he Scottish American, No. t^t. 
Rose Street, P.O. Box 995, New \ork, per John B. Mair, 
Hon. Treasurer Elgin Burns Club 32 9 9 

Elgin Burns Club 220 

Sum collected at the Elgin Burns Club Supper, per Bank of Scot- 
land, West End, Edinburgh 3 16 6 

•Oban Burns Club 2 10 o 

Montreal Burns Club ••■ 3^8 

Burns Benefit Club, Springfield, 100 


Mrs K. Gordon, rresidciil, the l)aiiy;lners of Caledonia of 1 

Worth, Texas, per Burns Federation 
Burns HowfiClub, Dumfries 
Xorth Berwick Burns Club ... 

Aherlady Burns Club 

Crailing Burns Club ... 

Lochee Burns Club 

Southampton Scottish Association ... 

Scottish Societies of Dunedin 

Leeds Caledonian Society 

Birmingham and Midland Scottish Society... 

Ayr Burns Club 

The London Burns Club 

Dundee and District (Natal) Caledonian Society .. 

The Hilo Burns Club of Hilo, Hawaii 

Harrismith Caledonian Society, Oranije River Colony 

Kinross Tolly Beggars Club 

Caledonian Society of Melbourne 
Kalgoorlie Caledonian Society 

Hawick Constitutional Club 

Kippen Burns Club 

Caledonian Society of Pretoria 

Caledonian Society of Melbourne ... 

Leicester Caledonian Society... 

The .\dmirers of the Auld Brig, at Prince Albert, Saskatchewan 

Falkirk Burns CluV) ... 

Glasgow Herald Vwnd, per Joseph Martin, Ivsq., Secretary of th 

Glasgow Committee 

Caledonian Society of Melbourne 

Caledonian Society of Adelaide 

Glasgoiv Herald Shilling Subscription Fund, per J. A. Martin 

Solicitor, Glasgow 

Hamilton Burns Club subscriptions.. 


1 1 

840 15 

« 15 

9 H 
O li 




Jan. 31. — To Kilmarnock Burns Club, No. o, per Sheets Nos. 

226 and 63 ^50 4 II 

Oct. 29. — ,, Cash received from Philip Sulley, Cupar, as I'ro- 
ceeds of Concert by Cupar Burns Club on iSth 

October 17 1 o 

,, Subscription from Mr [as. Porter, Prenlaws, Leslie i i o 

Dec. 6.^ ,, Proceeds of Lecture at Tayport by Messrs Sulley 

and Craig, Dunfermline ... ... ... ... 5 5 o 

,, 10. — ,, .Amount raised by St. Andrews Burns Club ... 24 o o 

Do. do. (29th Jan., 1907) i o o 

,, 22. — ,, Proceeds of a Concert and Lecture by Mr Sulley 

and J. Chapman, Dunfermline, at Kincardine... 10 10 o 

,, 27. — ,, Amount collected at an Address given by Mr P. 
Sulley, Cupar, and j. O. Craig, to Innerleven 
Golf Club ; nine of 7/6 and two of 1 7/6 collected 

at a Dinner of the Club — in all 12 50 

Tan. 8. — ,, Proceeds of a Concert held at Culross under aus- 
pices of Mr Sulley, per Torryburn Burns Club 3 10 o 
,, 26. — - ,, Proceeds of a Concert held at Kirkcaldy under the 
auspices of Kirkcaldy and District Wine and 
Spirit Trade Association ... ... ... ... 30 o o 

,, Interest received from Royal Bank of 

^ Scotland on Deposit Receipts ... /.on 9 

Less Com. on Cheques ;,^o i 9 

Do. on Draft ... o i 9 

Collector's Fee ... o 5 o 


o 3 3 

Jan. 29. — ,, Collected at a Burns " Night " held at Paisley by 

the Glenfield Residenters and Recreation Club 233 

,, 31.— ,, W. W. F. Perth and Chums 059 

,, Charleston Burns Club, Paisley 120 

Feb. I.- ,, Collected by Blackburn Burns Club i 14 o 

,, Collected at .Vnnual Dinner of Cupar Burns 

Club, per Philip Sulley 80 


Feb. I. — To Crail Lodge of Freemasons 

,, Amount received from a Lecture-concert held by 
Borthwick Burns Club, Midlothian 
,, II. — ,, Subscriptions from Musselburtjh Burns Club .. 

,, Old Kilpatrick Burns Club 

,, 12. — ,, Greenloaning Burns Club, per James Baync ... 
,, Carlisle Burns Club, per James Malcolm 

,, 15.— ,, William Wright, Kirkcaldy 

,, Henry Thomson-Percival, Buckhaven ... 
., 20.^ ,, George Dyson, Springfield Terrace, Marsden, 

near Huddersfield 
,, 28. — ,, Newcastle and Tyneside Burns (!lul), per James 

I). Farquliarson, Esq., M. D 

Mar. 4. — ,, Bristol Caledonia Society, Bri.stol 

,, 8. — ,, Campsie Burns Club 

,, 13. — ,, Hamilton Burns Club 

,, J. Roliert.son, Inland Revenue, Glasgow 
,, 20. — ,, Amount received (Caledonia) Baillieston Burns 
Club, per Peter Greenshields 

22.— ,, Alloa Burns Club 

,, 28. — ,, John Muir, Shelburn, Jacksonhill, Indiana 
.\pril 6. — ,, Burns IIowfT Club, Dumfries 

Oct. 21. — ,, Amount received from Kippen Burns Club 
No. 115 

£0 15 o 


2 6 


1 6 


4 8 

12 6 





13 10 

Jan. 31. — By Amount received, as per Dr. side Z'S^ 

,, Interest on Deposit Receipts added o 

Z,<?5.f Commission on Cheques £0 
Do. Bank Draft o 

Collector's Fee, Kilmarnock 
Burns Club .. ... o 

/158 19 8 



H\- .\mount remitted to .\yr, per Bank Draft 
Feb. I. — ,, Remitted D. W. Shaw and Welsh... 
,, II.— ,, Remitted D. W. Shaw and Welsh... 
„ 12.— ,, Remitted D. W. .Shaw and .. 


I I 








Feb. 15.— By Remitted D. W. Shaw and Welsh 

... £1 


,, 20.— ,, Remitted D. W. Shaw and Welsh 

,, 28.— ,, Remitted D. W. Shaw and Welsh •. 




Mar. 4.— ,, Remitted D. W. Shaw and Welsh 


,, 8.— ,, Remitted D. W. Shaw and Welsh 



,, 13.— „ Remitted D. W. Shaw and Welsh 



„ 20 - „ Remitted D. W. Shaw and Welsh 



„ 22.— ,, Remitted D. W. Shaw and Welsh 


Apl. II.— ,, Remitted D. W. Shaw and Welsh 

1 1 




Oct. 21.- 

Kemitted I). W. Shaw and Welsh... 


( Couclusioti. ) 

HAN'IXG completed the Xithsdale and Galloway song 
forgeries, Allan Cunningham went to London, where 
his doings can only be baldly catalogued. He wrote (see 
Fraser for June, 1843), for Sir Francis Chantrey, a letter to 
Sir Robert Peel, knowing that several statements in it were 
untrue. De Quincey tells of his speaking in contempt of 
Wordsworth at a time when he " knew nothing at all of Words- 
worth's works." In 1820 he a])peare(l in Blackivood as "Mark 
Macrabin," with a clumsy satire upon the Buchanite fanatics. 
It purports to be an account of a twenty-four hours' visit to the 
camp of the sect. That, although a native of the district, he 
confounds Lagg Hill, of Grierson fame, with Larghill ; that he 
repeats himself, that he is not above pilfering, that he mingles 
fact with invention, is all set forth in " The Buchanite Delu- 
sion '' ^^i Mr John Cameron. He detects in the description of 
the translation fiasco cjn Temjjland Hill a wholesale "crib" 
from Hossack's, as apjjcaring in Joseph Train's work on the 
Buchanites. "Macrabin tells this sirjiv of Luckie Buchan's 
attempts to win converts: — 

"'James,' said our Lady to a north country gardener, and 
a shrewd man, ' leave off tilling Mr Copland's garden, and come 
and dig in the garden of the Lord.' 

'"Ma conscience!' said the irre\erent Highlander, 'he 
wasna owre kind to the last gardener he had' — referring, no 
doubt, to the exi)ulsion of Adam from Paradise." 

The same story is told with slight variations in the note to 
Burns's letter of August, 1784, to his Montrose cousin. (Cun- 
ningham's Burns. VL, 48.) 'J'his gives rise to a question 


whether Allan inserted a true story in the " Macrabin " romance- 
or a fictitious storv in his edition of Burns. 

Cunningham's biographies of painters are excluded from 
the present survey. As further showing the position coming to 
be assigned him in literature, Mr Frank Miller's recent " Poets 
of Dumfriesshire " may be noticed. That author's general 
estimate of him may be gathered from one or two passages : — 
"Allan Cunningham thus refers to the ballad of 'Annan 
Water ' — ' Much of it is old and much of it seems touched over 
and amended bv a hand equally lucky and skilful.' The 
version preserved in The Songs of Scotland is fitted only to 
show how well he understood the are of touching over.'' Mr 
Miller reads Cunningham's assurance that numerous \ariations 
in the text of the ballad were known in his day with blunt 
scepticism — "If, as Cunningham assures us." etc. To him 
Miller attributes nearly all the Dumfriesshire "Jacobite" 
ballads and songs of merit. " Cumberland and Murray's 
Descent into Hell," printed in Hogg's Jacobiie Relics, "is not 
an old piece, but a forger}- from the practised hand of Allan 
Cunningham." Hogg prints " Lochmaben Cate " also, 
although he "sorely suspected" that Cunnhigham was its 
author. Cunningham reprints it in The Songs of Scotland with 
a note: — "I have no doubt of its beauty, l)ut much of its 
authenticitv. That it was composed on a heartless or a drunken 
rising of some of the Jac()l)ite gentlemen of the district is 
certain ; that it was written near the time of the rebellion (jf 1715 
is far more than (|uestionable.'' Mr Miller calls the note 
"suggestive," which it certainly is, if, as there is scant reason 
to doubt, Cunningham is discussing his own work. Tlie Songs 
of Scotland is ultimatelv dismissed in summary fashion by Mi 
Miller as " an anthology materially lessened in \-alue by the 
liberties taken with the text of the j)ieces given." 

It is a work, nevertheless, hi which Burns makes many 
appearances. The treatment accorded his several heroines can 
only be accounted for upon the assumption of Cunningham's 
having possessed an exceptionally prurient imaginatioi-i. When 

Burns siiij^s of Chloris, " that which increased the rcjjiitation of 
the poet has lessened tlic fame of tlie man. Cliloris believed 
in the dispensing power of l)eauty, tlial Ioac slvould he under 
no demure restraint, and own no law but that of nature." 
She was "a liberal lady,' willinti; to reward "his strains," and 
"gave him maiiv nocturnal o])portunitics of catching ins])iration 
from her jjresence." This comes in connection with "My 
Chloris, mark how green the groves ; " and is bad enough, but 
it is kejjt in coimtenance by the notes to " The stown glance o' 
kindness," and " Sae flaxen were her ringlets." Not oidy is 
the slander groundless : it holds a blacker libel than that of 
mere libertinism on Kmns. His wife was as intimate with the 
Lorimers as he was himself, and. when inxiting Mr borimer to 
dinner, his letter contains the clause: "Mrs Burns desired me 
yesternight to beg the favor of Jeany to come and partake with 
her; and she was so ol)liging as to ])romise that she would." 
That Burns encouraged his wife's intimacy with a lady who, 
according to Cunningham, was his song ins])iring mistress, and 
was maintaining social intercourse with William I.orimer, the 
father, at the same time that — presumal)l\ under cover of it — 
he was ])rosecuting a guilty amour with Jean I.orimer, the 
<laughter. is to attach to l^urns the stigma of de])ra\-ity so un- 
natural and abandoned that the rising gorge rejects it. if Cun- 
ningham had one scrap of evidence to advance in sup])ort of the 
charge, resentment might be less bitter, but the insinuation 
is, from first to last, the j)roduct of his own foul imagination. 

In his lexicon there is no such wr)r(l as chi\alr\. Clarnida 
fares no better than Chloris. Altliough lie could not .sj)eak 
with certainty of the heroine of " Ae fond kiss," his instinct 
could not be re])resseil. The "song is more creditable to her 
charni> ilian to her good name ;'" the Poet " seems to ha\e drank 
deeply of jo\ before he j)arted with the cup." The libel is 
repeated in a different form in the f.ife. Cunningham had no 
authoritN for alleging that wlien ]-{iirns was lying witli his injured 
limb in St. James' .Sr|uare. Clarnida " was now ami then a 
visitor to the crippled Bard, and di\erted him with her wit and 


soothed him with her presence,'' and that he was "watched 
by beautv on his couch." Burns had pointedly deprecated such 
a daring visit as forbidden by "cursed etiquette,'' in a letter of 
28th December, 1787. Cunningham makes various references 
to the Clarinda correspondence, and as this particular letter 
occurs amongst those published by Stewart, of Glasgow, in 
1802, "Honest Allan " must have seen it. 

Mary Campbell he ciared not smirch, but he must needs 
introduce a dash of suggestive sable in sketching her environ- 
ment. He says (Life and Works, I., 88): — "That she was 
beautiful we ha\e other testimony than that of Burns : her 
charms attracted gazers, if not wooers, and she was exposed to 
the allurements of wealth. She withstood all temptation," etc. 
— all, either gossip retailed without examination, or pure in- 
vention spun out of a diseased fant^y. The treatment of the 
Highland Mary episode is disjointed, and displays not a trace 
of independent in\-estigati()n directed towards the expiscation of 
such truth as may lie concealed in mystery. The statements 
that she was a ])easant's daughter, born at Ardrossan, and the 
like, need, at this time oi day, no discussion. That Burns 
became attached to Jean Armour soon after he lost his High- 
land Mary is a baseless conjecture, ser\iceal»le onlv as a warn- 
ing against an author's indulgence in guess-work. 

Regarding the generally accepted Burns note to " The 
Highland Lassie, O," until its genuineness is placed above 
doubt by the recovery of the manuscript, it lies outside the pale 
of debate. Readers of Mr James C. Dick will remember that 
the page upon which it ought to appear in the interleaved Glen- 
riddel I copy of Johnson's Musical Museum, is amissing. Cun- 
ningham's treatment of it. however, is a different affair, and 
savours strongly of the habitual practice of a literarv liliertine. 
He handles the version of the Gleniiddell Notes given in the 
Reliques as freely throughout as if he had been a participant in 
Cromek's detected inventions, garblings, and false ascriptions. 
He does everything but reprint them as they stand. The note 
at present in question, to "The Highland Lassie, O," does 


nothing iiKire than cxi-niplify a getK-ral usage. ( 'umiiiighani 
omits it from its propt-r place in the se(|uen(e of " l\.(Mnarks by 
Burns'' given in liis eighth xohnnc (Life and Works), l)ut. at 
the end (tf his third \nhime. ])rints the song and the note, 
without the first sentence. He leaves out, that is, the words, 
" This was a composition of mine in \ery early life, before I 
was known at all in the world.' He substitutes a brief explana- 
tion, that the Highland Lassie was Mary Campbell, and ascribes 
the rest of the note to Burns without any mention of its source 
in Cromek. It is partly repeated in the Life (L, 89), with 
minor alterations, and of Cromek's long footnote he gives a 
few garbled lines only. Cromek says of the lovers' parting:- — • 
"This adieu was jjerformed with all those simple and striking 
ceremonials which rustic sentiment has devised to prolong 
tender emotion and to insjjire awe." Cunningham, in a more 
business-like way, cuts the passage down:- "'This adieu was 
perft)rmcd,' says Cromek, ' in a striking and moving way.'" 

It might, in any ordinary case, be urged that Cromek said 
nothing of the kind, and that " Honest Allan '' had no right to 
put words in his mouth. The answer is the unsatisfied, but 
none the less lively and insistent, suspicion that Cromek may 
have said nothing w'.iatever, and that the footnote ascribed to 
him, and the note attributed to Burns, may both be the work 
of the imaginative Cunningham. The parting scene is described 
as by an eye-witness. Who saw it? Probably the same eye 
that witnessed Burns in the throes of "To ALary in Heaven," 
when "he threw himself on the side of a cornstack " — a feat 
for the performance of which a poet like Cunningham probably 
preferred a corn stack to a comparatively prosaic barn door, or 
the side of a house. It is w^el! nigh beyond human nature to 
treat such details with judicial seriousness. It must, however, 
be added that when (IV., 158-160) Cunningham prints the 
address he adopts Mrs Burns's more reasonable story that she 
found her husband in poetic travail " stretched among some 
corn sheaves." As the footnote to " The Highland Lassie, O, " 


stands in the Reliqucs, it does not appear in Cunningham's 

If anywhere, this would be the place to examine the be- 
wildering maze presented by the Cunningham-Cromek combine, 
and to follow up the Dick clue (" Notes on Scottish Song by 
Robert Burns," 1908) to the authorship of the fabricated notes 
in the Reliques version of the Glenriddell MS., and of the 
additions falsely attributed to Burns in Cromek's Select Scottish 
Songs (1818). Of these latter, Mr James C. Dick says in 
his Preface that they were either written by Cromek himself 
"or by his friend in deception. Allan Cunningham." The 
charge is direct and explicit, hut the testimony is not conclusive. 
A careful sifting strengthens suspicion, but it does not fix guilt, 
and, in an enquiry like the present, moral certainty is not 

One or two features of the case may be specified, but only 
with the clear premise that the exact parts played by Cunning- 
ham in either the ReUques or the Select Scottish Sojigs, if he 
played any, will probably ne\er be known. One circumstance 
is that knowing the Glenriddell copy of Johnson's Musical 
Museum was in the possession of Eliza Bayley, Manchester, he 
does not even pretend to have verified Cromek's version of the 
Notes. As a reproduction of that version, genuine Burns 
remarks and spurious together, what he prints at Vol. VIII., 
p. ,1, et seq. is worthless. Some of them are dropped out of 
their places in the Cromek order, and have to be traced else- 
where ; some are discarded altogether, some altered, and some 
embedded in notes avowedly by Cunningham himself. Such 
methods indicate little respect for Burns, none whatever for 
Cromek, and more presumption in Cunningham than is be- 
coming in an editor. 

The best test of authorship now available is that of com- 
parative analysis. The similarities between the three groups of 
Notes — the forgeries in the Reliques, the additions in Cromek's 
Select Scottish Songs, and Cunningham's own as given in his 
edition of Burns — are so close as to go far beyond a mere 

sug'i^e.^tion of idcntiu ot nrii^iii. It' ihe\ he closel} lomparcNl, 
in respect of btith style and sui)staiirp. one need not he an 
expert in coniparatixe i riticisni lo ])ass from doubt to certainty, 
that the avowed bv Cunninj^diam ami die unaxoucd are from the 
same pen. The distinctive ciualities of ( 'unninj^hanvs athnitted 
notes may he most clearly brou^dit out by placing;- them beside 
the genuine Burns notes. Burns is brief, original, and very 
often either is personal or speaks from personal knowledge; 
Cunningham inclines to be lengthy, (hffuse, and literarv. The 
note in the Rclujucs to "Saw ve mv Pegg\ , condemned by 
Dick, is a fair example of bookish invention; that to "The 
Highland I.addie" is a good specimen of bookish ex])ansion. 
These can be paralleled with a score of Cunningham's notes in 
Vol. IV. of his Burns. The family resemblance is .so striking, 
in both b)rm and s])iiit, as to leave but a thin shadow of doubt 
of a common parentage. 

In The Songs of Scotland, as previously noted, Burns is 
frequentl} introduced, but, wliile affecting anxietv for his 
reputation, (Amningham does not treat either his opinions, his 
work, or himself with any excess of generosity. He pounces 
eagerly upon Burns's most careless slip, points out any loan he 
niav ha\e le\ied \\\nm an earlier f)ard, (|uestions his taste, aiul 
doubts his attempted improvements upon old songs, but, for 
ill -conceived and misdirected pseudo-sympathy, the comment 
upon " For a" that, and a' that '' bears the gree. 

Who, asks Allan, can blame him for l)eing something of 
a leveller.-' For one vear he enjoved the friendshij) of the 
northern nobility, and for seven felt their neglect! They 
caressed him as no poet was ever caressed. " He expected this 
sunshine to last, and looked for fortune to follow." He had 
not the fortitude necessary to meet disappointment ! " 'i\j go 
at once from the rich man's wine and a table covered with plate 
to water from the well and the homely fare of a farmer — to leave 
my lady's hand for the rough stilts of a plough — were descents 
beyond his expectation, and far too strong for his spirit : — he 
sank, and died of a broken heart. " 


Let it be remembered that, from Edinburgh, in October, 
1787, Burns wrote Patrick Miller, " I want to be a farmer in a 
small farm;" that, also from Edinburgh, in January, 1788. he 
wrote the Earl of Glencairn, "I wish to get into the Excise;" 
and Cunningham's assertion that Burns " looked for fortune 
to follow " the caressings of the titled, is reduced to a false- 
hood. He had told the gentry of the Capital in advance, in 
printed black-and-white, " I was bred to the plough and am 
independent." To completely disperse the misleading mists of 
Cunningham's raising we ha\-e only to read the letter Burns 
wrote Mrs Dunlop on 15th January. 1787, that to Dr Moore 
two davs later, to the Rew G. Lawrie on 5th Februar\ . to the 
Earl of Buchan on the 7th, to Dr Moore on the 15th, to Mrs 
Dunlop on 22nd March, and why go further?* Burns never for 
a moment lost his head in Edinburgh, or was dazzled by a 
gilded future. It is Cunningham who loses his head over a 
fancied weakling whom it is an insult to the Poet's name to call 

That, in the Life, (Cunningham is a little less unjust may 
be admitted, Init even there his fancy picture of Burns over- 
turnmg silver dishes, garlan<led decanters, and shoxing opposing 
ladies and staring lords aside that he might rush back to the 
plough-tail, is pure pantomime. Burns is supposed to cut 
these capers on discovering the thing he really had already dis- 
covered, viz., that to Society he was something of an entertain- 
ing curiositv. He was that, but he was also something more, 
and, while protesting against Cunningham's grotesque dwarfing 
of Burns, a protest must also be entered against his utter mis- 
measurement of the kindly intentions of the people of rank, 
position, and learning, who really were the Poet's friends, and 
brought the future life he sketched withhi his reach. 

Cunningham represents Burns, on his first arrival in Edin- 
burgh, rambling aimlessly about, and, amongst other things, 
kissing the sod upon Fergusson's grave. This Dr Wallace (II., 
12) mildly suggests may l)e largely nnaginative. It certainly 
does not consist with Burns's letter of 6th February, 1787, to 



the Bailies of ranongate- -'' I am sorry to be told that the 
remains of Robert Fergusson lie," eti-. He tlid not need "to 
be told " if he had already visited the spot. On the snbject of 
Burns's alleged irregularities, Cunningham begins by dis- 
crediting his own witness, by suggesting that Heron was not at 
all solicitous about the truth. He is then placed upon the 
stand, and his evidence taken, although it is admittedly weighed 
"to the dust" by that of Dr Blair. Hyperbole is freely 
resorted to in treating of both the subscription to the Edinburgh 
edition, its circulation, and the criticism it evoked. There were 
not three thousand copies printed, and yet the husbandmen, 
shepherds, and mechanics of Scotland, " though wages were 
.small and money scarce," subscribed their crowns "in fifties 
and hundreds," and the volume went "over the country, over 
the colonies, and wherever the language was spoken." The 
entire narrative, in short, dealing with Burns in Edinburgh, is 
marred by looseness alike of j)lan and statement. It is largely 
composed of common-place reflections, inconsistencies, ex- 
aggeration, and untruth. The general impression it leaves is 
that Burns played both the boor and the fool, and that in the 
main, the experience left him irritated, disappointed, and 
despondent. The general effect is as untrue as many of the 

A hazy belief exists that Cunningham knew Burns person- 
ally. In "The Burns Country," for example, Mr Charles S. 
Dougall mentions a statement by Cunningliam that he was 
willing to stand or fall as an author by his " J.ife of Burns," 
and goes on to speak of " his personal knowledge of the Poet 
and f)f his associates in Dumfries," but no evidence of such 
knowledge is led. It is doubtful if any exists, except a story 
first contributed by .Vllan himself to a periodical mentioned by 
Lockhart. Mr Frank Miller ("The Poets of Dumfriesshire," 
p. 193), says: — "Whilst tenant of Fllisland, Burns was a 
neighbour of Cunningham\s [i.e., of John (.'unningham's, 
Allan's father] : and on a memorable day in 1790, Allan, stand- 
ing at his fathers knee, heard the great Poet repeat 'Tarn o' 


Shanter/ his beautiful voice varying with the character of the 
tale." In a footnote, Mr Miller refers to Cunningham's essay 
on "Robert Burns and Lord Byron" in the London Magazine 
of August, 1824. A comparison of dates, to be made presently, 
shows that if, at his then tender age, young Allan was captivated 
by the modulations of Burns's "beautiful voice," he was a 
marvel of precocity. 

The above story is, of course, the original of that com- 
municated to Lockhart for his "Life of Burns," published in 
1828. It will be found at p. 197 of the Bohn's Library 
Lockhart revised and corrected by William Scott-Douglas, atid 
issued in 1882. Lockhart prefaces a long contribution from 
" Honest Allan " with the remark that he was " almost a child 
when he first saw Burns, hut he was no common child." Cun- 
ningham fixes the time of his reminiscences at Burns's arrival 
in Nithsdale, and says : — " He came to see my father, and their 
conversation turned partly on farming, partly on poetry." To 
make sure, he repeats the assertion, " I said that Burns and 
my father conversed about poetry and farming. The Poet had 
newly taken possession of his farm of Ellisland." He had 
previously spoken of Burns's "fine manly" and "musical" 
voice. The humour of the situation is brought out by Scott- 
Douglas. By marshalling dates he shows that Allan was some- 
what under four — being born 7th December, 1784, he was only 
three and a half when, on 13th June, 1788, Burns went to 
Ellisland — when he overheard the conversation on farming and 
poetry, and about six when, "as he alleges," he listened to 
the recitation of " Tam o' Shanter." "Cunningham," the 
caustic comment runs, " must have been, as Mr Lockhart 
observes, no ordinary child." Concerning Burns's "beauti- 
ful" and "musical" voice, Scott-Douglas simply repeats 
Stobie (the exciseman's) remark to Robert Chambers — " Bums 
sang as readily as a nightingale, but he had the voice of a 

The "hazy belief" above adverted to can onlv have 
originated in Cunningham's own stories communicated to the 

London Magazine and Ix)ckhait. taken possihiv in coiintH'tion 
with his father's entry, in 1786, upon the tenancy of Sandbed, 
on the left bank of the Nith across from Ellisland. With the 
river between them, the two farmers might \er\ well have been 
neighbours, without holding much intercourse, and that yoimg 
Allan e\er saw the Poet, the above precocities ajjpcar to be the 
only exidence. When (Vol. III. f)f the Works) he prints the 
tale, he adds concerning it (page 180) yet ant)ther wonderfid 
memoi)' of boyhood : '' I rememlier with what eagerness * Tarn 
o' Shanter ' was circulated among the Scottish cottages, and 
how it was scarcely possible for one peasant to meet another 
without one or l^oth indulging in (luotations." This is one of 
the many self-refuting assertions that disfigure the edition, as 
well as the T.ife. The poem was onl\ composed (Wallace- 
Chambers, III.. 210-11) in the autumn of 1790, the year of 
the alleged recitation, and it was not published until Grose's 
Antiquities came out in .\])ril, 1791. A question is thus at 
once provoked as to the source of the peasants' familiarity with 
the tale. They could not all have got it from the Poet's read- 
ing of the copy, which, it is asserted, he carried about in his 
|X)cket. Captahi Grose's work is not likely to have circulated 
so freely among the Scottish cottages as t(j make its contents, 
even though including a poem by Burns, familiar as house- 
hold words. F,\en if it had, there is still a doubt of the know- 
ledge which alone would justify the confidence and comprehen- 
siveness of the memory quoted. 

Credulity is strained, and a similar case occurs in connec- 
tion with "Does haughty Gaul invasion threat?'' which Cun- 
ningham says (V., 273) became instantaneously popular, "and 
was soon to be heard on hill and dale." In the Life (p. 320) 
he is equally extravagant: "Hills echoed with it; it was heard 
in every street, and did more to right the mind of the rustic 
part of the population than all the speeches of Pitt and Dinidas, 
or of the chosen ' Five-and-forty. ' '' This is manifestly the 
work of an irresponsible maker of sounding phrases, and far 
from the measured language of sober biographv. 


To return to the subject of Cunningham's personal 
knowledge of Burns, he draws from memory a picture of the 
Poet as Volunteer, in which attention is called to his " indif- 
ferent dexterity in the handling of his arms." Can a boy of 
eleven be accepted as a judge of proficiency in manual exercise 
and drill ? The words, " I remember," are fatal ; the featureless 
and commonplace realism of the portrait is smudged by the 
shading of fiction. The sentence is also unfortunate in its con- 
text. It comes shortly before the condensation of Cunning- 
ham's notoriously imaginative account of the Poet's funeral as 
supplied to Lockhart. It is doubtful if he was in the town of 
Dumfries at this period, say the year prior to Burns's death. 
His story points to either continuous residence or very frequent 
visits. At the age of eleven (Miller, 193) he was "placed 
under the charge of a brother resident in Dalswinton village, to 
learn the trade of stone-mason." It is extremely unlikely that 
the boy-apprentice would be allowed to go into Dumfries to 
see, as he says, first, the Poet laid out for the grave, and again 
to take part in the funeral. It is even less likely that he was 
so familiar with what was going on in Dumfries as to justify him 
in saying of the talk of the town during the Poet's last illness 
that " w^herever two or three were gathered together, their talk 
was of Burns, and of him alone." A grown man living among 
the townsfolk could hardly have said more. 

Upon two heads he certainly allowed imagination to lead 
him astray. He wrote Lockhart of the funeral (p. 295): "The 
dav was a fine one, the sun was almost without a cloud, and not 
a drop of rain fell from dawn to twilight." This Scott-Douglas 
pronounces unsurpassed "literary impudence," and (Edin- 
burgh Burns VI., 208) gives the proof, after Dr Waddell, that 
the forenoon was showery, the afternoon pleasant, the evening 
and night wet. Again, speaking of the Mausoleum (p. 346 of 
the Life), Cunningham laments that the indifferent sculpture is 
not redeemed by the inscn-iption : — " The merits of him who 
wrote ' Tam o' Shanter ' and ' The Cottar's Saturday Night ' 
•were concealed in Latin." This is unpardonable, for Lock- 


hart himself, who g'ues tlic T.atiii ih-al'r ami coiulemns ihe struc- 
ture, adds tliat tlio uitcndrd iiiscrijition "was never added to 

It is true that, in the Life. "Honest Alhiii "' either modi- 
fies or is silent upon the more extraordinary features of his 
letters to Ixtrkhart. but he retains cnoui^h to fill with amaze- 
ment any reader of the Prefatory Notice to his eighth volume. 
He there mentions among his difficulties : — " I live remote from 
the land of Burns, and am consequently cut off from all such 
information as persmial application might hope to collect on 
the Nith and Ayr." It is to he regretted that he did not 
generalise the application of the plea of local disability, and 
decide from it to restrain his imagination and curb his recurring 
tendency towards unveracity. It ap])lies, howe\er, to other 
matters than those just detailed, or to such an early memory as 
the recitation of "Tarn o' Shanter," w^hich is repeated (I., 249) 
with all the circumstance of melodious voice and sparkling eye. 
He says nothing to prevent the stuff he wrote Lockhart being 
repeated in later editions of that author's Life, f^lits the a.sper- 
sion on Burns in obvious connection witli " 'I'lie Merry Muses," 
and the libel on "("hloris." which Lockliart reprints from the 
Songs of Scothuni. The enquiry into Cunningham's personal 
knowledge of Burns, that he ever saw him in life, or looked 
upon him in death, or saw his body lowered into the grave, thus 
fizzles out in sundry statements by himself. And he has been 
shown to have written so recklessly, and to have romanced so 
freelv. that, as a witness, he has simply put himself out of 

Conscious of having done his consrjenccless best to draw 
upon Lockhart the odium of offering a work of fiction for a 
biography of Burns, he began his own Life of the Poet with the 
avowed intention of making "a clear and judicious narrative," 
and at the he flatters him.self (VUL, p. \i.) upon having 
left little that is "dark or mystical in either the Life or Works 
of the Poet." There is a greatness about such effrontery that 
almost touches the sublime. The j)hrases quoted apjily to a 


work in which no borrowed statement has been verified, which 
is rank with mistifying annotations, and in which nothing is new 
but the fabrications and the rash substitutions of the probable 
for the true. The case is stated broadly. The opening pages 
of the Life teem with errors, the padding is enormous, and when 
an incorrect version of eight lines of John Hamilton's addition 
to "Of a' the airts "' is ascribed to Burns, one is disposed to 
ask if the writer's critical faculty was asleep. No wide-awake 
critic would surely think of Burns complimenting his Jean upon 
being personally clean. If, in fine, all that is untrue, all that 
is dubious, and all that is irrelevantly reflective were extracted 
from the "clear and judicious " Life, very little would be left 
to stand for "Honest Allan's" assumed "candour and 

Little more can be done here than point the way for any 
wishing to carry this study further. Cunningham is freely 
handled, and sometimes deservedly scourged, by Scott-Douglas 
and Dr Wallace, one subject being his calumnious charge against 
James Johnson. As a critic of Burns, he is both worthless and 
disingenuous. In one of his prefaces, reprinted in 1887, he 
boldlv differs from earlier editors in accepting and rejecting 
certain poems associated with the name of Burns. If the test 
he applies to "The Tree of Liberty," which he rejects, be 
turned to "The Vowels — A Tale," which he admits, the result 
will be found an eloquent commentary upon his critical methods. 
What he savs of Burns 's admiration of Peter Pindar, and of his 
preference of Fergusson to Ramsay, while unimportant as bear- 
ing upon Burns 's taste and opinions, has no real foundation. 
In his most deliberate prose utterance — Preface of 1786 — Burns 
gives Ramsay precedence of Fergusson. Cunningham here 
builds upon a mere obiter dictum in Poem and Common -place 
Book, purely incidental to the theme occupying Burns's mind. 
Regarding Pindar, it is ludicrous to find that when Burns 
thought he was speaking of him in terms of warm praise, he 
was in fact eulogising the "Lord Gregory " of Dr Walcott, or 
Wolcotl (See Currie IV., 40.) 


Ciiniiiiit;hani is yet iiiDie disin^emious in his ciiticism of 
Burns's i>\])resso(l \ic\v (if tiiannTing and addinii, \o die songs and 
fragmentary ballads of others. He charges the Poet with being 
mistaken in thenry. and inconsistent in practice. (See Letters 
to Tytler of Woodhouselee, of August, 1787; to Mrs Dunlop, 
of 13th Xoveniber. 1788; and to Thomson, April. 1793.) An 
examination of these entries, taken in connection with Allan's 
acH^usation in the Life and in his chajiter on " The Ayrshire 
Ballads," shows that while fullv recognising llie difference 
between songs and balhuls. he wilfulh mixes them up, and mis- 
applies to each one the letters in which Bin-ns is dealing with 
the other. The case criunhles into fragments, and the onlv 
result is to prove Cunningham both inconsistent and tricky. 
The simple truth is that liurns's theory conflicts with running- 
ham's own practic:e, and that he had no comprehension of 
Burns's royal way of borrowing an idea from an old chorus, and 
returning the loan by investing the old "makkar ' with the credit 
for his own verses. In this matter it is ne<'essary to follow 
Cunningham in both T/zc Songs of Scotland and his Life and 
Works of Burns. The sum -total of the whole enciuiry is that 
Cuimingham is no more to be taken on trust for critical acumen 
than for either editorial honestv or biographical veracity. 
Exit, " Honest Allan," the Second. 



'T^HE following article which appeared in July, 1896, in the London 
■■■ monthly Britannia, fairly answers Lord Rosebery's query at the 
opening of the Auld Brig o" Ayr : — 

" ' Plad Burns gone to Jamaica ' is a subject for speculative writing which 
lias so far escaped the attention of that vast army of scribblers, who, with the 
near approach of the great centenary as an excuse, have found profitable 
matter for their pens in dealing with the many ' might-have-beens ' in the 
career of the Poet. We have been gravely — very gravely — told that had he 
lived till after the passing of the Reform Bill he most likely would have 
become the Parliamentary representative of a Scotch burgh— with a tendency, 
no doubt, to issue his manifestos in verse. Another gentleman has tried to 
figure out what-might-have-been had the Poet's environment— /o«/;(7«;-ji- environ- 
ment — been changed at the proper psychological moment, his idea, perhaps, 
being that in such a case there would have been no necessity for the average 
Burns's Club president feeling called upon to apologise for his character as a 
man while extolling his work as a bard. Yet a third has endeavoured to give 
a clear indication of how Burns would have acted under certain contingencies 
possible only to this century ; while a fourth has — but why go on multiplying 
the might-have-beens evolved in other brains, while there are some in my own 
that seem to me as well worth the light of day ? 

" As an Anglo-West Indian who at the present moment has nothing 
better to do than shiver over the sitting-room fire, nursing the remains of a 
refractory liver and sighing for a stretch in his cotton hammock, which hangs 
in the shadiest corner of the verandah of his residence overlooking Port Royal, 
I protest that after all the sort of thing that has been permitted, it is only fair 
and proper that the field of imaginative speculation should be so extended as 
to include that island lying on the fringe of the Caribbean Sea which zwj nearly 
played a part in the destiny of Burns, and which was the means of invoking 
his muse on more than one occasion. 

" If this inclusion be granted, I may [ircjcecd to say that even to this day 
it is a matter of the deepest regret to white Jamaicans that the Poet was 
unable to accept the overseership with its £Tfi per annum on a sugar estate in 
the 'Pearl of the Antilles.' At certain seasons of the year wiicn their 
ingenuity fails to twist their vocabulary into a satisfactory and soul-relieving 
expression of physical suft'ering, this regret intensifies almost to poignant grief. 

They know what he wrote alioul the toothache, and when that tropical 
torment known as ' prickly heat ' irritates and stings the skin and makes them 
throw somersaults when the juice of the lime is applied as a cure to the tender 
places, they positively yearn for a permanent record of what he might have 
said under similar circumstances. To generate the afflatus necessary for such 
an effort, the Poet's cuticle would only have had to hurst into a glow of 
prickling heat about the middle watches of the night — causing him to rise and 
remove his pyjama jacket to ' touch the spot ' (which is generally between the 
shoulder blades) with the product of the lime tree— when no doubt something 
of a very caustic nature would have been the result. A few verses on such a 
subject, together with an ode ' To the Mosquito ' — based on a sleepless night 
caused by its ' venomed stang " — would assuredly have doubly endeared his 
memory to all Anglo-\A'est Indians, and mayhap have led to the erection in 
Kingston of a monument of the Poet represented as a sugar-estate overseer in 
white linen suit, pith helmet, and pugaree all complete ! It is true that such 
a statue might appear a trifle bizarre to those accustomed to picture Burns 
attired only in the conventional garments of the Lowland Scot of the period, 
but, at the same time, it might have been regarded by others as a splendid 
relief to the stereotyped custom of representing the Poet as holding a plough, 
gazing meditatively on a daisy% or trying to look as if he hadn't been present 
at the masonic lodge the previous night. As an overseer in going round the 
estate to see how the cultivation was progressing, his principal means of loco- 
motion would in all probability have been a mule, but, since he never had 
any e.xperience of such an animal, he lost a chance of writing a poem which 
would ha\e been sung, chanted, or recited in every countrv' where it plants its 

" These fancies, or might-have-beens, of course, are only entertained by 
the more flippant of Jamaican society. There are others— those who affect 
culture and attend the ' Al-Homes ' at Government House a good deal more 
regularly than church— who tell you that if P.uins had resided in the West 
Indies he never would have made such a bad slip as alhide to the 'apple on 
the pine' — a curious blunder, though excusable when one remembers that 
pineapples were not then so common as they are now. They will tell you, 
too, with quite a convincing air, that the fruit alluded to does not grow on the 
pine, but in the earth, like the common or kitchen garden cabbage. If you 
are a new comer and an admirer of the Poet, you will blush for his ignorance 
and try to apologise for his short-coming as ingeniously as a young curate 
caught reading an unexpurgated version of ' Holy Willie's Prayer'; while if 
you happen to be seasoned you will sigh heavily, a sign which is always taken 
to mean that you are pondering over what might have been. 

" Seriously speaking, however. Burns as a sugar-estate overseer has ici 
long l)een a favourite topic of discussion and speculation aincjng the more 


thoughtful of the West Indian plantociac}-. What would have been his 
attitude towards slavery, or the ' domestic institution,' as the South American 
prefers to call it ? Would he have rebelled against the scriptural decree that 
the descendants of the ' Graceless Ham ' — to quote his own description of that 
unfilial gentleman — were doomed to be hewers of wood and drawers of water 
to the end of the chapter ; or would he, well versed in the Bible as he was, 
with prophetic eye have seen that in their bondage the Negro race— like the 
Jews who were so greatly improved by their long servitude under the 
Egyptians — were working out their own salvation and undergoing a preparatory 
training which was to lift them from a condition only once removed from 
savagery into the clear noonday of civilisation ? Who can say ? 

" Whatever his idea might have been on subjects such as these, there can 
be no doubt that had Burns come within the bewitching spell of the Tropics — 
where, according to his own showing, he was to ' flourish like the lily ' — his 
poetry would have borne an impress of the charm of his new surroundings. 
When one pictures the deep blue sky unflecked by speck of cloud ; the 
generous sunshine flooding the bountiful landscape smiling peacefully in all its 
variegated splendour ; the glories of the Southern Cross ; and feels again the 
mysterious influence of the tropical night, when the air is vibrating with the 
sharp whizzing of the wings of myriads of insects, there almost comes a pang 
of regret that Burns did not fill that part of his destiny which pointed to the 
Antilles. As it is,. the West Indies are still awaiting their poet laureate, and 
the great rustling fields of waving sugar-cane — next to a field of ripening corn, 
the prettiest sight in creation— their sonneteer ; a fact which might be noted 
by our budding rhymsters who are overcrowding the literary market at home. 
" Burns could not scrape together sufficient money to enable him to take 
ship for Jamaica. To-day, he who would be an overseer, has his passage paid 
outward, and a salary secured twice the amount of the modest allowance that 
almost tempted the Poet to leave his own loved land behind. 

"D. K." 

We complete the answer by the following, which appeared in the 
Evening 'J'iii/es, on January agtli, 1906 : — 

If Burn.s had gone to Jamaica. 

I WAS sitting the oilier day in a rough strip of heat-baked scrub, heedless 
alike of sun above and probable ants and grass-lice l^elow — tired : behind me 
the uncultivated bush, steeped in mid-day sun-glare and silence, stretched 
away to the distant hills ; in front lay a great glistening ^reen plain of sugar 
canes, with the factory buildings rising from a clump of tall waving cocoanut 
palms on its further verge: nearer at hand -giving life to the picuire but in no 


way disluibini; its peace — lliree yoke of oxen slowly emerged at an "interval'" 
from the high enshrouding rows of cane ; clumsily turning, stolidly enduring 
the shouts and raw-hide inflictions of the negro driver, they as slowly dis- 
appeared. I fell a dreaming. .\nd what, I thought, if our Burns had come 
to this ? What if " The gloomy nicht is gatherin' fast " had completed the 

Scottish output ? What if . And then my fuller knowledge came to the 

rescue, and, as ever, rendered the " if" fatuous. Still, all his arrangements 
had been made — his box was on its way — his berth was taken in the brig 
Nancy — a position on this side had been secured for him — many of his good- 
byes had been said — he himself was hard in the wake of his kist : — "The 
gloomy nicht was gatherin' fast" indeed. But here a Providence intervened — 
Scotland's own special self-created Providence — hard-headed Thrift. Captain 
White and his Nancy were bound, it seems, for Savannah-la-Mar, a port on 
the south-west corner of Jamaica, and Burns's destination was the vicinage of 
Port Antonio, on the nortli-east coast line of the island. Things were not 
then in Jamaica as they are now, and although the computed distance 
between the two places— practically the island's length apart — was a Irifle of 
149 miles the estimated cost to the Poet's employer totalled about ^50. This 
the Scottish agent of the estate owner did not feel warranted in expending on 
any young ploughman, even though he was able to write verses, and Robert 
Burns had to wait for a direct Port Antonio boat. Oh—" saving " grace ! 
close-fisted Scot I I wonder what his name was ? Ano then, of course. Burns 
■didn't come — other people and other things came in the way. But had he 
come it would have been to one of the most beautiful parts of the land of end- 
less summer, and, by way of contrast, to one of the most brutalising occupa- 
tions followed by self-respecting white men. Burns was engaged to act as a 
" book-keeper '" on one of the sugar estates of Mr Charles Douglas, a fellow- 
shireman of his own — .\yr Mount and Nightingale Grove, Mr Douglas's 
properties, lay along the basin of the Rio Grande. The old Spanish name 
had the double distinction of being not only descriptive but true, for around 
here Nature has spread her gifts most bountifully — and mountain, river, forest, 
and tilled-land would have held the Poet entranced. Tropic vegetation in 
every shape and every hue luxuriated in this kindly clime. Per contra — as a 
boy Burns knew "the life of a hermit and the unct^asing toil of a galley 
slave." Had his adolescence found him in Jamaica these conditions of life 
would have suffered little change — only that of time and place. We know, 
too, that in the projected Jamaican employment he anticipated being " a poor 
negro driver,"' but I do not believe he ever conceived what that meant. The 
" bookkeeper " was at once a slave and a freeman ! a slave and slave-driver I 
The book-keeping portion of the duties of even a modern book-keeper in 
Jamaica form far and away the least part of these duties, and the work, with 
extended license, was similar in the slavery days. The "bookie'" had con- 


trol of the gangs of negroes in the field, in the boiling house, and in the still- 
house. To "get a move on,"' as the Vankees say, the whip was applied to 
the negro hide at that time as thoughtfully, or as thoughtlessly, as the nigger 
driver had applied the raw cowhide to my yokes — a few minutes ago. In 
addition to a liberality of whip-cord the Jamaican slave-laws of the period 
admitted of such attentions for misdemeanours as branding, dismemberment, 
and other mutilations, and with such cases the book-keepers were more or 
less directly associated. The work of the field jbook-keeper ran from the sun's 
rise to its setting in all weathers, in hot, humid, unhealthy cultivations ; 
during crop time the work in the boiling house was practically continuous — 
"a weary slave frae sun tae sun." Even to-day the conditions of life and 
labour of this official on a sugar property are in many cases rather "rummy,'> 
the work itself a something short of slavery, while the salaries are pitifully 

Hurns's agreement was for three years at the salary of ^30 a year, board 
and lodging free. Board and lodging : — hum I Could he have only guessed, 
these did not by any means represent the Jarvian "comforts o' the Saut- 
market." The book-keepers did not reside with the " squire " or his repre- 
sentative " the busha." Their residence was the wretched uncomfortable, 
unhomely " barracks '" situated somewhere near the factory set in the heart of 
the malarial influences which always hang around a sugar estate. The average 
circumstances of life, too, were changed for the " bookie." He was not 
called upon to marry from the eligibles of even his own station in life — often 
enough he was forbidden to marry ; but he was assisted in the selection o. a 
" housekeeper" from amongst the slave women of the estate. Rum could be 
procured ad lib., and it was drunk in the corresponding ratio. Burns thought 
he might fall " a victim to the inhospitable clime;" of that there was a 
remote chance. The real cause of the whole trouble lay in the fact that the 
conditions of life in Scotland and Jamaica lay poles asunder. Such refinem.ent 
as may have prevailed in the old-world homes of the book-keepers had no place 
in their habitations in the tropics. There were no restrictions on life or 
living — society offered none, government pressed none, the moral tone of the 
period dictated none. Thus it is not surprising to learn from authentic 
records that no fewer than ninety per cent, of the white book-keepers who 
came to Jamaica died from the effects of imprudent courses. Hard work and 
hard drinking went hand in hand — until fever put in its hot-burning fist and— 
usually closed the game. What sentiments, I wonder, would these contrasting 
conditions — where every prospect pleases, and only man was vile — have 
raised in the Poet? Would he here, too, as old ilohenlinden Campbell said 
of him, " brand each vice with satire strong ? " Would we have had a cycle 
of slave poems live with the passion which the gross condition of the negroes 
would assuredly have raised in the Poet's breast ? Some "Scots wha hae " 


to Darkcsi Africa? Would the scenic i^iaiKleiir have i^uaianleed for us 
another " Isle of I'alnis " in loftier vein? Would the wide sweeping Grande, 
the silver rapids, the encircling forests have given us a new Doon and other 
woods than Ballochmyle ? Would a still-house wee sma' hour carouse have 
given us another version of the peck o' maul story ? Another snatch from the 
Rubaiyat ? Would a night of Annancy stories and a negro " shay-shay " 
(dance) have given us an Ethiopian rendering of " The Jolly Beggars ?" Or 
would the ghostly " duppies " of the nigger ever have produced a compeer to 
Auld AUoway's " Cutty Sark ?" And, lastly, what would we have had from 
the miseries ot his exile? Songs of exile, I know, with which none extant 
may be summoned forward for parallel. But this, you may say is no dream. 
No, I confess, it is nightmare 1 For myself, I can picture our Burns in many 
a strange ploy, but I cannot imagine him whip in hand lacerating the bare 
glistening black bodies of his slaves. His whip, with its thong of satire lash- 
tipped with scorn, was, we should thank Heaven 1 made to lay its cruel lines 
across the backs of the Mess Johns of the Presbytery of Ayr. Scotland, in 
this and other ways, he released from the vile bondage of a crass hypocrisy ; 

in Jamaica he might . But here goes my "busha" crossing a smudg- 

squdgy water-logged " interval" between the cane-pieces, his mule up to the 
saddle girths in glaur. I must go and work. 

Iamaica. S. R. G. 



LIVER WENDELL HOLMES once wrote that " Burns 
ought to have passed ten years of his hfe — or five at least 
— in America, for those words of his, 

' A man's a man for a" that,' 

show that true American feeling belonged to him as much as if 
he had been born in sight of the hill before me as I write, 
Bunker Hill." If Burns was an enthusiastic admirer of Wash- 
ington and the Revolution, the American people have certainly 
well returned the homage ; they have taken our Scottish Bard to 
their heart. Hardly even in Scotland itself has Burns been more 
lovingly studied and more highly lauded and appreciated than 
-among the citizens of the great transatlantic Republic. In 
various American towns and cities statues have been erected to 
the memory of our Poet ; throughout the United States his natal 
day is annually celebrated with the greatest enthusiasm ; and 
numerous literary tributes have been issued from the American 
press in praise of the Bard of Scotia. The following quotations 
from the speeches and writings of representative American men 
and women will convey some idea of the extent to which Burns 
has been, and is, idolised in the United States : — 

Statesmen, Orators, c\:c. 

His [Abraham Lincoln's] republicanism is of the same spirit as the songs 

of his favourite Burns. 

Henry Ekvan Binns. 

In the highest class of lyric poetry three names stand eminent. Their 

field covers eighteen centuries of time, and the three men are Horace, 

Beranger, and Burns. 

President Garkiei-D, 1874. 


One halfof llie soni;s worlh siiigint; have Burns fcir their aiuhur. 


Oealh has cancelled everything of Burns bul his genius and virtues. 
E. A. Calkins, al Wisconsin, iSsi. 

England does not love Shakespeare, nor Italy Danle, nor (lermany 
Goedie, with die passionate ardour with which Scotland loves Burns. It is no 
wonder, for he is Auld Scotia's thistle, bloomed out into a flower so fair that 
its beauty and perfume fill the world with joy. 

Gkokce William Curtis, at New York, i8So. 

Of Burns I can say tiiat he was the light of my life in my early years, 
although I had hut a nuililaled edition, and but a single volume, as I believe. 
F. 11. UNDiCkWOOi), at (ilasgow, 1S85. 

Robert Burns, I bow before thee in reverence ! Thou art the man that 
came to speak more directly than any other in the world's history —straight out 
of his heart to the heart of his toiling brethren. 

I bin. Wali.ACIC Bkike, at Ayr, 1891. 

Burns was contented, after doing his work, to live in retirement ; feeling 
probably that " not marble nor the gilded monuments of princes" would out- 
live his " powerful rhyme.'" 

Henry Georc.e. 

The name of Roloert Burns can never die. lie is enrolled among the 
immortals, and will live for ever. This man left a legacy of riches untold, not 
only to Scotland but to the whole world. 

Colonel K. d. Incersoi.l, at Chicago, 1893. 

I-?e was poet born, and that includetl patriot and philanthropist —the 
great trinity of attributes and gifts in one. 

General Isaac S. Ca', 1895. 

The poems of Burns need no interpretation, they are the common 
language of the human heart. 

Hon. John W. Gofk, at New ^'ork, 1896. 


There is only one school that can produce liini, and (hat is the school of 
hardshi;\ privation, and daily toil that liurns attended. 

Hon. Wkx1)I:i.l V. SiWlTdRD, at Barre, Vermont, 1899. 

The senilis of .Scotland sings through the .soul of Burns like the wind 
through an .l<',olian harp. 

Hon. (Jkouck F. Hoak, at Boston, 1901. 

His monument already rises from the noble, liberty-loving liearts of all 

Hon. David B. HKN-ni':i<.snN, at Washington, 1902. 

The stranger in a foreign land loving Burns comes to luve Sccjtland and 
her [leople, because Burns loved them. 

Hon. S. M. Taylor, at A\r, iqo^. 

AuTHOK.s, Critics, iVx. 

I passed a whole m..ining about " the banks and braes of Bonnie Doon, 
with his tender little lo\e-vcrses running in niv head. 

Wasiiingion Ir\-i\(;, I(S6o. 

There must have been something very gr.ind in his imme(Hale inesence, 
some .strangely impressive characteristic in his natural beliaviour, to have 
caused him to seein like a demigod so soon. 

Nathamki, Hawthoknr, 1863. 

I do consider him the most Poet that ever lived. I had rutht-r be anther 
ov one p(jum I kncnv ov, than tew be King and (^)ueen o\- FJngland, and keep 
a hoss and carriage. 

H. W. Shaw (-'Josh Bii.i.incs "). 

Of heavenly stature, but most human smile, 

Gyved with our faults he stands. 
Truth's white and Love's red roses tendering us, 

Whose thorns are in his hands. 

G. W. Cahi.i;. 

The Scotch — all classes of them- -love Burns deep down in their hearts, 
V)ecause he has expressed them from the roots up, as none other has. 

John Burroughs, 1S82. 


I icmeniher no more reverent pilgrims than those who turned aside from 
that l>nsthn!:; city [Glasgow] to seek the little Ayrsliire village wliere a rudt 
bridge, a time-worn church, and a peasant's crumbling cottage were enough Ic 
hold their [lulses and stay tlieir restless feel. 

l!ui/i IIaktf,, 1S96. 

HisswTet and melodious genius. \V. II. K idkinc, 1879. 

The long triumphant .song of the Master .Singer. 

R. 11. Stoddaiu), at New York, 1883. 

Tl;e freedom of Burns must have been a hcr( ditament from far back. 


I'urns makes the dialect he employs flexible to every mood of thought and 
passion, from good as solid as granite to tiie most bewitching descriptions 
of nature and the lofiiest affirmations of conscience. 

Edwin I'icucv Wmi'ri.i'., 1SS7. 

The commonest wild-flow er, in the of this passionate singer, has its 
roots beside the fountain of tears, and not a leaf stirs or fills but its image is 
caught in the lumuhuous sweep and current of life. VViucii'i Mahik, 1891. 

Whitlier learned, with Burns's lielp, to count his treasures aright. 

W. C. Lawtox, 1898. 

Other poets we like and admire ; to some extent we may make tliem 
ours — Burns in his own winning way charms us before we know it, we are 

C. L., 1898. 

I'urns .shall be my slandbv of a winter night. 

|. II. -MOKSI.:. 

Burns speaks the universal language of passion not to be learned in the 
schools. His love-songs ... are among the truest and best in the 

IIi.nkyS., 1905. 


Some Poets. 

There have been loftier themes than his, 

And longer scrolls and louder lyres, 
And lays lit up with Poesy's 

Purer and holier fires : 
Yet read the names that know not death ; 

Few nobler ones than Burns are there ; 
And few have won a greener wreath 

Than that which binds his hair. 

Fitz-Gkeene E. Hallkck, 1822. 

The lark of Scotia's morning sky ! 

Whcse voice may sing his praises ? 
With Heaven's own sunlight in his eye 

He walked among the daisies, 
Till through the cloud of fortune's wrong 

He soared to fields of glory : 
But left his land her sweetest song 

And earth her saddest story. 

Oliver Wendell Holmes, 1856. 

From the fall of Adam to this time, I believe, there was nothing written 
in the vein of his "Mountain Daisy" ; others have caught his spirit from 
that poem, but who among them all has excelled him ? 

W. C. Bryant, at New York, 1859. 

O'er rank and pomp, as he had seen 

I saw the Man uprising ; 
No longer common or unclean, 

The child of God's baptizing ! 
With clearer eyes I saw the worth 

Of life among the lowly ; 
The Bible at his Cottar's hearth 

Had made my own more holy. 

J. G. Whittier. 


He spoke of Burns : men riulc ;iml louj^li 

Pressed round lo lnjaVjiliu piaisc of one 
Whose heart was made of manly, simple stuff, 

As homespun as their own ; 
And when he read, they forward leaned. 

Drinking with thirsty hearts and ears, 
I lis l)i<iiik-like songs whom glory never weaned 

From humble smiles and tears. 

J. K. l.OWKI 

U Hums, Hiuns, come hack to the hanks of honny Doon 1 It is won! 

Ji)Ai.)UIN MlI.l.EK, 1870. 

So long as love is precious, and bereavement sacred, and hypocrisy bale- 
ful, and pretension ridiculous, and labour honourable, and true manhoiKi noble 
— so long as poetry, simple, natural, elo(|uent, is the delight of mankind, alike 
in the halls of the opulent and by "wee bit ingle blinkie"s family,"' so long 
shall the memory of Burns endure 1 

John G. Saxk, 1S70. 

.Vt moments, wrestling with his fate 
His voice is harsh, but nt)t with hate 

The brushwood, hung 
Above the tavern door, lets fall 
Its liiiler leaf, its drops of gall 

Upon his tongue. 

But still the music of his song 
Rises o'er all elate and strong ; 

Its master-chords 
Are Manhood, Freedom, Br(jtherhoo( 
Its discords but an interlude 

Between the words. 

11. W. L().N< 

Dear Rob I manly, Avilly, fond, friendly, full of weak spots as well as 
strong ones. . . . Perhaps no one ever sang "lads and la.sses "— ihai 
universal race, mainly the same, too, in all ages, all lands — down on ilieir own 
pi.ine, as he has. 

Wait Whitman, iS<S6. 

Some Divines 

His poems will be . . read vviih admiration \>y the critic as lonir 

as ihe laws of poetry and criticism are suftered to accord with the dictates of 


Abraham Kkes, D. 1)., 1819. 

He is one of the builders of the new civilization of freedom and humanity. 

Dr Osgood, 1S59. 

Robert Burns has taught men the thoui^hts of God in nature more than a 

great many pulpits have. 

Henry Ward Beechi<:r, 1878. 

Life is a struggle, and any one who can, like Robert Burns, ease it, is a 


Ur Tai.mace, 1880. 

His unadorned and simple verse has been an inspiration ofbeaulv and 
love to the young poets of all the generations that have followed. 

Dr Leroy |. Halsev, 1885. 

The poet of freedom and of the common human life— the man of the 
people, who, in " The Cottar's Saturday Night,"' painted a picture of a poor 
man's home such as even Shakespeare never dreamed of, and .set it in a light 
sweeter and fairer than ever rested on a palace. 

Rev. Robert H. Coi.lyer, 1888. 

"r; Burns"s song has evoked the more hallowed poetry of generous deetls, of 
guileless charity, and of genuine brotherhood. 

Dr C. G. LORIMER, 18S8. 

From his s(jngs the spiritual anatomy of the heart might be reconstructed, 
and a true philosophy of life might be formed. 

Dr Wm. S. Smart, 1888. 

This poem ["'The Cottar's Saturday Night"!. '" which puril\-, piety, and 

patriotism have their touching and memorable expression. . . . Many a 

time have I gone over it with pleasure. 

Dr John Hall, 1890. 


Huiiis loves. Here is ilie secret of il all. lie wrcjlc wilh the liearl. He 
loved ! He came near his fellows, he dieu iliL-ni lo iiini. 

Rev KniKiiDdi; VViiKKi.KK, 1S91. 

ISiinis was over on llie side of riijlu. 

Rev. Dr Ckikt, 1895. 

The roel-laureale of man. 

Dr KuKKKLL, at Ayr, 1S95. 

In his family Hums was the watchful, kindly, diligent father. 


This child of sunshine and sweet soni;, with his Hashing wit, and abundant 


Newki.i Dwicin, 1900. 

(Jne of the most generous and lovii^g hearts the world lias ever known. 
Dr DoNAi.i) C. MACLEOD, 1902. 

Some Women. 

Poor Burns ! how inseparably he has woven iiiniself with the warp and 
woof of every Scottish association ! 

Hakkikt 15ke(Iiek Stowe, 185,:;. 

liurns is full of the noble, genuine democracy which seeks not to destroy 
royalty, but lo make all men kings, as he himself was, in nature and in action, 

Makcaket Fuller Os.soi.i. 

If Spenser was resjjonsible for the magnificent poetry of Keats, Burns was 

W'hitiicr's literary godfather. 

Mary Ne(;rei'Onte. 

This peasant poet who had so truly the lender, loving, suffering "heart 

of a man in him." 

Caroline V>. le Row, 1878. 

The genius and intluence of Burns is beyond analysis and beyond 

crii icism. 

Amelia E. Barr, 1883. 


Does he listen, when in lands he never saw, great poets sing of liim in 
words simple and melodious as his own ? 

IIki.en Hunt Jackson, 1S.S3. 

Thrfe vScoto-Americans. 

My knowledge of Americans in Scotland led me to expect a love for the 
songs and poetry of Burns in this country, and I have found il lo he even more 
general and hearty than that which surpii-cd me at home. The Soiuh is 
quite as enthusiastic for Hums as the North. 

I'rofessor Naikm:, at New N'ork, 1S59. 

Ilis productions are the propertx- and solace of mankind. 

General J \mi:s Ckant Wilson, 1876. 

Burns was an apostle of all we know hy good-fellowsliip, and his supreme 

mission was lo sing the hrotherhood of man. 

Andrkw Caknkoik. 


nrRxss sTKWAirroN rhlatixm^s. 


OX Saturday afternoon, September 24th, 1910, the quiet 
little town of Stewarton [)resented a scene of unusual stir 
and animation, caused by the ceremony attending the un- 
veiling of a handsome memorial in the peaceful churchyard to the 
relatives of the National Bard who have been laid to rest there. 
The memorial, which has been erected by the Stewarton I.iterary 
Society, is in the form of a graceful obelisk of Ballochmyle red 
freestone. Its design is simple but pleasing, and standing twelve 
feet high in the vicinity of the front entrance of the church, it will 
attiact the attention and interest of all who may in years to come 
visit this quiet spot. On the front of the base is cut the following 
inscription : " Erected by the Stewarton Literary Society, 24th 
September, 19 10, in memory of Robert Burns, uncle of the 
National Poet, ' Poor Uncle Robert,' who died at Stewarton. 3rd 
January, 1789. Here also are interred the remains of his eldest 
son John, who died 17th February, 1846." On the north side is 
the sentence, "The connection between the Poet and his uncle's 
family was a very close one. See letter, Ellisland, 9th February, 
1789"; and on the south side theie is the following extract: 
" My brother lives at Stewarton. He hath two sons and one 
douther named John, William, and Fanny. Letter of \Vm. 
Burns (father of the Poet), Lochlie, i4tli April, 1781." The 
whole workmanship has been excellently carried out by Messrs 
A. & W. Barclay, builders. 

Prior to the inauguration ceremony the Burgh Band marched 
through the town playing selections, and this was the signal for 
large numbers of the townspeople to make their way 10 the 
churchyard, where there were also present many members of the 

Burns Federation from Kilmarnock and Glasgmv, the scene 
presented being one that will remain memorable in the annals of 

Mr Andrew Kerr, President of the Literary Society, presided, 
and in the course of a few introductory remarks said that they 
were met there on a very interesting occasion. The erection of a 
memorial to the relatives of the Poet Burns who were buried in 
that place had been a subject long talked of in Stewarton, but 
nothing had been done until about three years ago, when they had a 
lecture from Mr Duncan M 'Naught, in which he suggested that 
the Literary Society should take up the idea and see it carried 
through. The members acted on his suggestion, and in this 
stone they had the result of their effort, and he was happy to say 
that it had been erected without any of the general public having 
been called upon to contribute. From all they could gather, 
both from Burns's correspondence and from local tradition, the 
uncle of the Poet and his family who lived in Stewarton weie 
upright and highly respectable people. They had never much 
wealth, and at times their circumstances were very far from 
affluent. They belonged to that hardy peasant stock which had 
given us such men as Burns, Carlyle, Hugh Miller, the Ettrick 
Shepherd, and many others whose names were mscriijed on the 
scroll of fame and of whom we in Scotland were justly proud. 
In erecting this stone they were but paying a humble tribute to 
the memory of that immortal genius, the Poet whose legacy to us 
had been so great. So rich had been that legacy that they could 
not afford to neglect any place or person or association connected 
with him. In conclusion, Mr Kerr said that in calling on Mr 
Duncan M'Naught he would offer him their heartiest congratula- 
tions on the honour which he had recently received of being 
appointed President of the Burns Federation. No one more 
deserved that honour, for no one had done more to keep the 
memory of the Poet fresh and fragrant in his native land. He 
had much pleasure on behalf of the Literary Society in calling on 
Mr M'Naught to unveil the memorial. 

Mr M'Naught, who had a cordial reception, said that he well 



remembertd over ihiily years ago making pilgrimage to the 
Stewarton Churchyard in order to discover for himself the exact 
spot where lay the remains of the relatives of the Poet, and from 
that day he had lost no opportunity of reminding the Stewar- 
tonians of the duty that remained for them to perform in connec- 
tion with the memory of the National Bard, and he had never 
spoken to a Stewartonian who had a word to say against such a 
movement. But what was everybody's business turned out to be 
nobody's, and the matter was postponed and postponed until at 
last it fell into the hands of the Literary Society. As he took it, 
that Society represented the intellectuality of the place — though 
perhaps in saying that he was forgetting the School Board and 
Town Council — and he thought they deserved every credit not 
only for what they had accomplished but also for the method in 
which they had accomplished it. There had been no a[)peal to 
the public. They simply allowed their slender funds to accumu- 
late until they found they had a sufficient sum on hand to carry 
out this task. It would have been no difficult matter for the 
Burns Federation to have taken this thing in hand, but he 
congratulated them— and he was sure the whole Burns world 
congratulated them — while they had good reason to congratulate 
themselves on the fact that this movement had been originated 
and carried on in Stewarton and brought to this successful issue 
by Stewarton people. He was well aware that many people 
looked upon such a movement as a matter of sentiment, and the 
Burns sentiment in Scotland had many curious outcomes, but he 
might refer them to the old maxim that sentiment rules the world. 
What were those frail memorials around them which implored 
" the passing tribute of a sigh" but expressions of sentiment? 
What was even that sacred building before them but the outcome 
of the highest and noblest sentiment that could affect humanity, 
the sentiment that found expression in religion ? And as they 
had individual sentiment, so they had national sentiment, which 
was but the aggregate of the former. After referring to some of 
the curious outcomes of the Burns sentiment, Mr M'Naught went 
on to say that here they had something more solid and sub- 


stantial. Those who rested there were men of flesh and blood, 
they were well-known to the Poet, and they. were his relatives. 
Speaking of the genealogy of Burns, the most severe of modern 
biographers, Henley, had said that he was descended from the 
" poor, lewd, grimy, free-spoken, ribald peasantry of Scotland," 
but he had only to go back one step in the Poet's genealogy 
to get a direct contradiction of everything he said about the 
Scottish peasantry. There was to him no more pathetic picture in 
the whole life-story of Burns than that stooping figure of the man 
who maintained an unceasing struggle against poverty, against the 
want of money, against the want of capital to carry on his legiti- 
mate business. He was a man of the sternest and highest 
principle, who would curry favour with no man, and who would 
allow no man, however rich and powerful, to defraud him out of 
one jot or tittle of what he thought to be his rights. And such a 
man as William Burns was. Such also was the man who was 
sleeping where they stood, Robert Burns, his brother. Concern 
ing him ihey knew less than of the Poet's father. They would 
find on the monument the sentence "The connection between 
the Poet and his uncle's family was a very close one," with a refer- 
ence to a letter written by Burns after the death of " poor Uncle 
Robert," a letter which was a credit to him. The interest that he 
took in his poorer relations was one of the best traits in his char- 
acter, and in this connection they were able to remove a popular 
but utterly wrong impression that Burns lived a neglected life and 
died in poverty. He (Mr M'Naught) had been instrumental in 
recovering for the Town Council of Kilmarnock documents which 
were now in the Burns Monument and which showed that for 
years he had allowed his brother Gilbert a loan of ;^i8o on which 
interest at 5 per cent, was running, while at his death his debts did 
not amount to ^15. In conclusion, Mr M'Naught said that if 
in after years it was said that this was an indirect memorial to the 
National Poet, be it so. There was no shame in that. He was a 
Scotsman of whom they all ought to feel proud. He had left a 
heritage and a message to the world that the world would not let 
die. In the words of Henley, the most severe censor of Burns 


the man. " His voice has gone ringing dcnvn the corridors of 
time these hundred years and more, and is lieard more loudly, 
more clearly now ilian when first it fell upon the human ear." 

Mr M'Naught then unveiled the memorial, which had been 
swathed in canvas, amid applause. 

The Chairman said that there was with them that day one 
gentleman who remembered well the cousin of the Poet. This 
was Mr James CoUjuhoun, in whose mother's house John Burns 
spent the last sixteen or seventeen years of his life, and who was 
present at his funeral when he was buried at the spot where this 
stone now stood. 

Rev. Alexander Strang, Shettleston, to whose initiative 
during his Stewarton ministry the Literary Society owes its exist- 
ence, in the course of a few remarks said that he did not think 
there were any more fitting tasks which an Ayrshire Literary 
Society could have set itself than indirectly to commemorate one 
who had made Ayrshire famous throughout the world. He hoped 
that the Society would continue to flourish and would keep before 
it high ideals. 

Mr .'\ndrew Sinclair, President of the Association of Burns 
Clubs in Ayrshire, on behalf of that body congratulated the 
Literary Society on the worthy object which they had achieved. 

Mr Jeffrey Hunter, Glasgow, also spoke briefly, and suggested 
that the Literary Society migiit use their efforts in ancjther 
direction and interest the school children in the poetry of Burns 
and our Scottish literature. 

A hearty vote of thanks to Mr M'Naught brought the [iro- 
ceedings to a close. 

Afterwards the members of the committee and visitors were 
entertained to tea in the Lesser Institute Hall. Mr Kerr presided, 
and after an excellent tea a number of toasts were honoured. 

The Chairman gave the toast of "The Burns Federation," 
referring to the valuable work carried out by that body, and 
wishing it every success ; and Mr Thomas Amos, M.A., Kilmar- 
nock, in replying, said he thought the objects of the Federation 
were being successfully achieved, because in his capacity as 


Secretary he found that the afifiliated Societies were more and 
more turning their attention to the study of Scottish literature 
and history. 

Mr Ballantyne, Glasgow, in a humorous speech gave the 
toast of "Stewarton Literary Society," and Rev. G. J. Jeffrey 

Other toasts were " The Press," proposed by Mr David 
Lang, and replied to by Mr T. Hannah ; " The Sculptors," by 
Mr Hugh Eaglesham ; and " The Chairman," by Mr M'Naught. 
Songs were rendered by members of the company, and an en- 
joyable social hour was concluded with the singing of Auld Lang 
Syne in time-honoured fashion. 


A Dictionary ok the Characters in the VVavekley Novels ok Sir 
Walter Scott. By M. F. A. Husband, B.A. (London: George 
Routledge & Sons. ) 

Mr Husband has in this volume done thoroughly and judiciously a work the 
need of which has probably been felt a thousand times for once that it has been 
expressed. It is practically sure of a welcome alike from literary workers, 
students of general literature as well as specialists in Scott, and from readers 
of romance everywhere. Its place will be beside the Waverley novels in every 
library. Its usefulness for reference hardly needs demonstration. It is noted 
that, inclusive of 37 horses and 33 dogs, no fewer than 2836 characters are 
entered in alphabetical order in the Dictionary. In such a host, while none is 
likely to forget anything material concerning the M'lvors, or Bailie Nicol 
Jarvie, Rob Roy, or Jeanie Deans, or any others of the more prominent 
immortals, that some of the minor creations should have become indistinct in 
place and outline cannot be considered other than a venial lapse of memory, 
even in a professing admirer of Scott. It is, moreover, not Scott alone whose 
characters linger with the present-day reader of fiction, but those of the many 
who have followed him in romance, down to Meredith, Stevenson, and the 
living Churchill. Selection has become the only resource of the most 
retentive memory. To recall promptly from such a " vasty deep '" the figures 
of Scott's Dugald Garr, or Hugh Houkham, or even Father Francis, a volume 
like this of Mr Hu.sband's was a necessity. The novel is indicated in which 
the several characters appear, and just enough is told of each for identification 
and description. No attempt is made to evidence the parts they play. 

In addition to that, a few of the rarer Scots words occurring in connection 
with individuals are explained after the entries dealing with them, and a 
number of historical notes are scattered through the volume, either explanatory 
of the action of the novels or corrective of Scott. The latter are none too 
long. It is only said of the Duke of Rothesay, for example, that he died in 
1402, and not in 1396 as indicated by Scott. But that is not the only error 
into which he falls. Nearly all that is said of Rothesay, including the vicious 
career, outlined by Mr Husband, is either fiction pure, or not proven. 
There is no conclusive evidence that the Duke was done to death, and he 


certainly did not die in the east wing of the Palace of Falkland, for it was not 
built until long after his day. The starvation story is included in the note to 
the Duke of Albany. As a rule, nevertheless, Mr Husband is trustworthy, 
careful, and illuminative. Another valuable feature of the book is a chrono- 
logical table of the Novels, given in the order followed in the edition of 
1829-33 (48 volumes), which Scott himself revised and corrected, and was the 
first published after his acknowledgment of the authorship. The date of the 
first publication of each is stated, and, though they are not summarised, there 
is a sufficiency of information given to localise the incidents and fix the periods 
to which they severally belong. From what has been said the scope of the 
work may probably be gathered, and looking at it broadly, Mr Husband can 
hardly be too highly praised on the score of either industry, conciseness, 
minuteness of detail, or a full comprehension of the want he undertook to 

The History of GlEx\bervie, The Fatherland of Burns : A Parish in 
the County of Kincardineshire. By George Henderson Kinnear, 
F.E.I.S., Schoolmaster, Glenbervie. (Laurencekirk : Archibald Taylor, 
Kincardineshire Observer Office. Edinburgh and Glasgow : John 
Menzies cS: Co.) 

But for its involving an act of simple justice, the pages of the Burns 
Chronicle had assuredly not been used for any reference to the above attempt 
to earn a literary reputation. The work first appeared in 1895, under 
the title of History of Glenbervie. In course of preparing it, Mr Kinnear 
helped himself so freely to a series of copyrighted articles by Mr Edward 
Pinnington that the author of them remonstrated. Mr Kinnear pled ignorance 
of copyright law, that he had no intention of invading protected rights, and, 
in the end, upon friendly intervention, Mr Pinnington said that, due 
acknowledgment being made, he would write the Burns chapter himself. He 
did so, and the Preface of 1895 states the circumstances in full. Finding that, 
by reason of the Burns chapter, the book was more widely noticed than it 
otherwise would have been, Mr Kinnear now brings out a new edition with 
the Burns chapter reprinted verbatim, and "The Fatherland of Burns" 
imparted into the title. At the same time he drops from his Preface al 
reference to Mr Pinnington and his good-natured contribution of the Burns 
chapter out of copyrighted material. The result is that Mr Kinnear has be^n 
widely credited in the Press with Mr Pinnington's work and researches. The 
truth of the matter has been stated in one or two weekly papers only. The 
position Mr Kinnear has succeeded in reaching is, however, his own affair. 


Thi: Scottish and A.mkkuan Poems of James Ken XKnv. (E(linharc;h 
and London : Oliphant, Anderson & Feriier.) 

I V must be encouraging; to the Sons of Song tliat, fust copyriglited in 1883, these 
poems are now in their fifth thousand, and that a new issue is contemplated, 
the explanation probably being that, while rhymsters abound, Mr Kennedy is 
t'-Miiperamentally a poet. lie has," furthermore, the rare gift of singing in 
Scots and English with equal facilit\', vigour, and grace. As pure poetry, and 
in respect of high thinking one of his most inemoralile pieces, " In the Golden 
Cage," beginning — 

" O'er the hills of effort lie 
Fields of opportunity," 

is in English. In English also is his " Proem," in which, addressing the 
Muse of Scotland, he pays eloquent homage to Purns : — 

" I long to see thy beauteous face. 
And mark thy wild and winsome grace ; 
And catch, perchance, some kindling thrill 
Of that divine, impassioned skill, 
Which flamed into imnifjrtal fire. 
When Coila's tninstrel tuned the lyre, 
And swept its thrilling chords along 
In bursts of sweet ecstatic song." 

There is another poem, consisting of eight stanzas, addressed " To the Shade 
of Burns," and written on the unveiling of a statue to his memory in Central 
Park, New York, in which the feeling of reverent admiration is as grateful as 
the melody of the verse. Speaking of the attendant thousands, Mr Kennedy 
says : — 

"They see in monumental bronze s^ 

Thy manly form and face ; 
They hear in music's sweetest tones 
Thy spirit's grander grace. 

And though from many lands they came, 

To brotherhood they're grown ; 
By thee their pulses throb the same. 

Their hearts are all thy own." 

These quotations may give some faint idea of Mr Kennedy's style ; the latter 
is made for a second purpose. He is .Scots by birth — what is commonly 
called a Scottish-American — and his ruling sentiments are a passionate love of 
Scotland, a faithful attachment to his adopted home, and an almost pathetic 


belief in the brotherhood of man. The latter occurs as quoted above. When 
the Scots of New York went out to fight for the North and the Union, he 
says, in " The Highlanders in Tennessee " — 

" And their's the cause that strongly stood 
Alone for human brotherhood." 

The thought occurs in the " Proem" in more impassioned phrase — 

" the faith that fiiintly hears 

A far-off music in our ears ; 
When all the barriers that divide 
The human race are swept aside. 
And man with brother man shall be 
Bless'd in a happy unity."' 

It recurs, like a refrain, at the close of •' Auld Scotia in the Field," and again 
in the last verse of " The Songs of Scotland.'' In such fashion the message of 
Burns and Tennyson is taken up by the poet of a later generation, and carried 
who can say whither? This alone would show that Mr Kennedy is no idle 
jangler of the lute strings. A peculiar kind of worldly-wise humour gives 
point to his character sketches. The majority of his lyrics are love-songs, 
although it is doubtful if, for sweetness and charm, they equal " Bonnie 
Noranside" or " Noran Water." The American element is represented by 
"Among the Catskill M(Hintains," " To the Mosquitoes," and the exception- 
ally beautiful " To the Humming Bird," with its fond memories of home, that 

" Come sudden on th' enraptured view, 
Then vanish in a blink — like you " ; 

and its closing address to Poesy — 

" And though thy flashing fancies flit 
Like this wee birdie's restless fit." 

I'he Scots " fute " might have looked better than " fit," but, for quick and 
apt change of thought and musical phrase, the poem is one of the finest 
examples of poetic art in the volume. Two pieces are devoted to Robert 
Buchanan. The most ambitious poem is " The Highlanders in Tennessee," 
but Mr Kennedy's genius seems to be essentially lyrical, and that notwith- 
standing the high quality of some of the other pieces named. If the volume 
came as a surprise, it has turned out a pleasure, and inspires a hope that Mr 
Kennedy may both continue to sing, and live to reap the Poet's dearest reward 
— a full meed of praise, and the poetic rank to which he is entitled. 


Thr Poets ok Avrsiiikk, froni ilie Kourtcenth Ceniuiy lill the present day, 
with Selections from llieir Writings. Compiled and Edited Ijy John 
Macintosh, Autiior of Ayrshire N'ights'' Eiifertainineiits" &c. (Dumfries : 
Thomas Hunter & Co.) 
This is not a critics' book, and anything .sdid here must be construed as matter 
of suggestion for a second edition. The value of such a collection depends 
primarily upon the editor's construction of liis function, as decided by his 
observance or neglect of two rules. The first is that a clear line of division be 
drawn between poetry and prose masquerading in poetic guise ; the second is 
that an intelligible principle be observed in classifying the poets to be con- 
sidered entitled to admission. Grouping poets by counties is, in truth, rarely 
satisfactory and often irritating. What is an Ayrshire poet? If birth be tlie 
test, then all the " resident" poets brought together in Book III. of this work 
are excluded. If residence be the test, then .Mexander Smith and several 
others born in the county are inadmissible. .Smith was taken away in child- 
hood, drew no inspiration from Ayrshire, is intimately associated with 
Gla.sgow and Edinburgh, found his best themes outwith his nursery, and so far 
is not, in a true sense, a " Poet of Ayrshire. "' Upon the residential qualific:i.- 
tion, again, Burns has already been claimeti for I^unifriesshire. l)Ut he also 
lived in Edinburgh, wrote there several pieces, including his matchless 
" Farewell to Clarinda," and if he is to be claimed for Midlothian, and on 
like grounds for other counties, a nice ([uestion arises as to the length of time 
necessary for county naturalisation. Other objections to the geographical 
assortment ate the tendency county boundaries have of becoming elastic, and 
the impetus given to unwarrantably swelling the divisional quantity of verse, 
irrespective of quality. For example, Stenhouse ascribes "Willie was a 
Wanton Wag '" to Walkinshaw ; to keep him in Ayrshire, Mr Macintosh 
says dubiously, " the balance of opinion seems to be in favour of Hamilton," 
of Gilbertfield, but gives not a word of the evidence behind the opinion. The 
mention of quantity and quality leads back to the above-mentioned distinction 
Vjetween poetry and prose. The editorial temptation to swell the bulk of 
collected verse is admittedly great, and that for obvious reasons. It is desir- 
able to spread the interest of the collection. But how can the happy medium 
be struck between collecting in the spirit of the lowly chiffonier and in that of 
a discriminating editor? Going through the volume, one would think that 
no sins of omission could be laid at the compiler's door. \'et in his Intro- 
ductory Note he speaks somewhat threateningly of a "single volume,'' in 
connection with omitted names and selections " which might have enriched " 
his work. This hint of further explorations is the ground of our reference to 
a new edition. If any of the following suggestions are of value they are at 
the editor's dispo.sal. 

There is a chance of neatly defining the connection between .\yrshire and 


Burns's poetry. He lived in it for thirty years ; it inspired his outstanding 
poems, "Tarn o' Shanter,'" "The Cottar's Saturday Night,"' " The Jolly 
Beggars," &c. ; it thrilled him with love and gave him a wife ; it made both a 
man and a poet of him ; it was the Mount Nebo from which Burns looked out 
upon the world. Mr Macintosh is here loo timid in his effort to gereralise, 
and he only selects " The Mouse," " The Unco Guid,'"and " Mary Morrison," 
to represent the Muse of Burns. In Book I. are poets of whose productions 
we get none. One sample, at least, seems desirable in a volume of the kind, 
in place of such material as a conjectural parody by Wallace, of Cairnhill. 
The types are also a little uncertain, historic appearing for histrionic, e're for 
e'er, and the like. On page 30 there is room for fuller treatment of Isabel 
Pagan— (l) to summarise the evidence of her having written " The Crook and 
Plaid," (2) to explain why it was not included in her published volume, and 
(3) to show by comparison how far Henry Scott Riddell plagiarised. That 
Jean Glover really wrote " O'er the moor among the heather," would bear 
a little elucidation. William Simson"s authorship of the epistle attributed to 
him is doubtful, but its merits hardly warrant either inclusion or 
discussion. According to the editor's own confession, Thomas 
Walker has no claim to admission, and David Wood is in 
the same position. Several are admitted who possess no credentials, 
such as the Rev. Dr Thomas Burns. The editor seems to have a kindly- 
weakness for the clergy. Rev. John Andrew is pilloried, not immortalised, by 
the halting and meaningless gibljerish attacb.ed to his name. Regarding 
Alexander Smith, it is said that he was charged with plagiarism on publishing 
City Poems and that, by reason of the charge, Edwin of Deira fell 
flat. That is not the usual rendering of the facts. City Poems appeared 
\x\ x^^"] , SiVA Edwin of Deiia \x\ i86r. There was no charge of plagiarism 
in connection with the former, but in 1859 Tennyson published the first instal- 
ment of his Idylls of the King, and it was the similarity of Smith's Edwin 
to them that evoked the imputation of plagiarism. He was not guiliy. 
There is strong reason for believing that Edxinn of Deira was nearly all in 
MS. before the Idylls appeared. Mr Macintosh can probably redd up these 
statements. He says, again, that Smith's poetry declined after Ci/y Poe/iis. 
One critic, on the contrary, says that Edivin of Deira contains " Smilli's 
finest poetical work," and adds " it has dignity, pathos, reserve, and a 
haunting beauty." Space will not permit the lengthening nf these jottings. 

The Bkk; of Ayr— And Something of Its Story. By James A. Morris 

(Ayr : Stephen & Pollock.) 
The name of Mr Morris has been so intimately connected with the preserva- 
tion of the Auld Brig o' Ayr, from the inception of the movement down to the 


inauguration ceremony whicli marked the completion of the operations, that it 
was most fitting that he should become the historian of the steps taken by the 
Preservation Committee to prevent its demolition. For a long time its fate 
hung in the balance, more than one eminent engineer being of opinion that 
the proposed salvage operations were neither possible nor desirable, and, but 
for Mr Morris's enthusiastic and persistent advocacy of the preservation 
scheme, it is not too much to say that the Brig at this date would have been 
so modernised as to have lost all value as a landmark of the past and memorial 
of the National Bard. On the successful completion of the restoration work, 
Mr Morris contributed a full and most interesting article to the Glasgow 
Herald, describing in detail the various operations and the engineering skill 
which surmounted all difficulties and gave the Auld Brig a new lease of 
existence for centuries to come. In the volume before us he has condensed 
that article and strengthened it by making the more technical parts of it more 
intelligible to the general reader. We have no hesitation in saying that as a 
hand-book of a local memorial of world-wide fame it is a model of its kind. 
In the illustrations as well as in the te.\t the antiquarian element predominates, 
for Mr Morris is by instinct a whole-hearted, yet discriminating, admirer of 
the art of the past, and an inveterate opponent of vandalism in every shape 
and form. In the get-up of the volume even, his antiquarian tastes are 
observable in the quaint daintiness of type and binding. The book, which is 
now in its second edition, should be on the shelves of every Burns admirer, 
not as a mere souvenir of a great national movement, but as a valuable and 
reliable contritjuiion to the history of the Town of Ayr and the wider Land of 


\_The following is the suhslam-e of a Lecture delivered by Mr ArNanglit 
the National Burns Club, Glasgoiv, on Nov. iQth, iqoS.'\ 

NEVER was a man of genius so unfortunate in his early 
biographers as Burns, so grossly abused by ignorant 
though well-meaning editors, so perversely garbled and 
misrepresented by hacks and penny-a-liners intent more upon 
pelf than justice to their author. Take the latest instance, 
Cromek, whose Reiiques have been received as gospel for loo years 
—unquestioned, because considered unquestionable. The MS. 
from which he professed to copy Burns's notes on the songs which 
appeared in Johnson's Museum (the Interleaved Glenriddel 
volumes) have been recovered within the last five years, and what 
has been the result? Some of them genuine (more by accident 
than design apparently), a large proportion of them Riddell's own, 
as many Cromek's own, a goodly number nobody's in particular ; 
some, and these not the least important, not in the original at all ; 
garbling and suppression all through, and yet all set down in the 
name of Piurns. If this was possible in 1808 in connection with 
the compositions on which his fame rests, what was likely to 
eventuate with unprincipled publishers whose desire was to label 
the obscenity of the ages with his commandmg and lucrative 
name ? 

i had heard the libel whispered from my youth up, but it 
was Gilfillan's Life of Burns (dated 1878) which stimulated me 
to put his assertions to the proof. The Gilfillan Edition is in 
two volumes, published by Mackenzie, of Edinburgh, and for 
careless and ignorant editing, swaggering assertion, and deliberate 
and inhuman mangling of the Poet's character on gutter evidence 
of the most improbable character, I will back it against anything 

ever written upon Burns, and that is saying a good deal. This is 
what he says of the Aferrv Muses. I quote it in full : — 

"It was ahoul lliis time (1793) —surely one of ihe (krk(>st points in liis 
whole history — ihat Burns, as he tells Mr M'.Murdo, began to form a 
collection of licentious songs known as the ' Merry Muses,' and which is 
certainly the biggest literary blot on his memory. We own to having read 
these unworthy productions ; and while we admit the jilea that many of them 
are not, as a whole, from the pen of Burns, tlial those which are manifestly 
his are the purest, and that to his hand we trace all those strokes of quirky 
humour and iiaivelt' which are found in the most and worst of them, we freely 
grant that the Merry Jl/ifcs may be called what Leigh Hunt calls Cotton's 
Fi;-^«7, a ' beastly book,' and is rank throughout with the very miasma of 
uncleanness. We believe the most of what Burns wrote in it was written 
while in a slate of intoxication. Than the gentleman who showed us the 
copy — the late Robert White, of Newcastle, author of Otterhiirne and 
Bannockhurn, works both of high antiquarian value — a purer, sincerer, 
simpler being, or one who more admired Burns, never existed. Deep sorrow, 
rather than anger, was in both our hearts as we went f)ver it together. 
While told us he knew an innkeeper (he mentioned his name, l)ut we, who 
had no thought then — it was in 1872 — of writing a life of Burns, neglected to 
take it down) whose house the Bard frequented, who said tiiat up to a certain 
point he was most deliglilful society, but beyond that he would often spend 
the rest of the evening in singing obscene songs ; at a certain stage the I'oei 
and the man were spirited away — the Burns evaporated, the Brute only 
remained. White mentioned this to us repeatedly, and it was undoubtedly 
true. Chambers gives what is, wc suppose, an accurate enough account of the 
way in which the collection came to see the light, after Burns's death, through 
the cupidity of a bookseller. He calls it a ' mean-looking volume.' Tliis was 
true of the copy White showed us ; but we once saw, for a mere minute or 
two, a better-got-up edition (not for sale, however) in tvvo volumes, in the 
shop of the late Maurice Ogle, publisher, Glasgow. This miserable book 
may probably be still creeping, like the plague in Constantinople, in obscure 
regions of the country. Bui its very vileness prevents it from being noxious; 
it kindles no feeling but disgust, awakens no passion but anger, or rather 
grief — disgust at the volume itself, grief for the author. 

" While on this ungrateful subject, we may as well quote what Byron 
.says of Burns's letters, which had been shown him by Allen, Lord Holland's 
ibrarian — a man of vast and curious erudition : — ' Allen has lent me a 
quantity of Burns's unpublished, and never to be published, letters. They are 
full of oaths and obscene songs. What an antithetical mind ! tenderness, 
roughness, delicacy, coarseness, sentiment, sensuality, soaring and grovelling. 


dirt and deity, all mixed up in one compound of poor clay.' This is from his 
Journal, but in his letter to Bowles he says farther — ' I have seen myself a 
collection of letters of another eminent — nay, pre-eminent — deceased poet, so 
abominably gross and elaborately coarse that I do not believe they could be 
paralleled in our language. What is more strange is, that some of them are 
couched as postscripts to his serious and sentimental letters, to which are 
tacked either a piece of prose or some verses of the most hyperbolical obscenity.' 
lie himself says that ' if obscenity (he uses a much coarser word) were the sin 
against the Holy Ghost, he most certainly could not be saved.' We have ni>t 
seen the letters referred to, but perhaps Mr White's statement points out one 
way of e.\'plaining them — the sentimental part might be written before dinner 
and the postscript added after. This is an explanation, though, of course, not 
a sufficient paUiative of the offence. Burns, writing to Mrs Dunlop, Dr 
Moore, and Dugald Stewart, could not have written obscenely, since he 
would not, one would think, have allowed himself to write to them if he had 
been in this state. Writing to others whom he respected less, he might have 
permitted wine and passion to have their way ; and then, as when he was 
with the innkeeper, the Burns vanished, the Brute survived (and is there noj 
more or less of the brutal nature in all men), and hence came the 
' hyperbolical obscenity.' " 

Let us look at this a moment as a typical example of the 
Gilfillan method. He grants that many of the pieces are not 
Burns's, that those which are his are the purest, still he sheds 
crocodile tears over Burns as the author. It is a printed book he 
holds in his hands entitled Bur-nss Merry Muses — " gude black 
prent," and therefore assuredly true. Where did the " pure, 
sincere, simple being," known as Robert White, procure it, what 
date did it bear, and why did such a "pure, etc.," person have it 
in his possession ? Where is the manuscript or collateral 
evidence? There is no evidence whatever of any kind, but the 
innkeeper is introduced to buttress up the charge. Who was he ? 
Gilfillan forgot, though " White mentioned it to him repeatedly " ; 
and we are to receive this nebulous tale as " undoubtedly true." 
And he read the volume of obscenities through and through 
with grief rather than anger in his heart, though the title-page 
bore, "Not for maids, ministers, nor striplings." He sneers at R. 
Chambers in a covert way, " supposing " him " accurate enough " 
in dealing with a subject of which he himself knew absolutely 


nothing. He enckavouis to conceal his ignorance, as was his 
wont, in the pompous, unctuous phraseology I have read to you, 
with what success I leave you to judge. Then, as for his quota- 
tions from the Jourfial and letters of Byron, to what do they 
refer? Certainly not to the ribald volume, the authorship of 
which suggested them. Who was this Allen who gave Byron a 
perusal of certain letters which GilfiUan confesses he never saw ? 
Robert Cleghorn, farmer, Saughton Mills, married a widow 
named Mrs Allen, who had a son, John, by her first husband. 
This John Allen, of Holland House, was therefore Cleghorn's 
step-son, and inherited his step-father's estate and personal effects, 
amongst the latter being Burns's letters to his bosom Crochallan 
crony, Cleghorn. Most of these letters have been published with 
the objectionable addenda which shocked the virtuous Byron, 
indicated, if not printed in their entirety. What was the nature 
of these addenda and the other "hyperbolical obscenities" referred 
to ? I need not rehearse to my present audience the history and 
membership of the Crochallan Club in Edinburgh, of which 
Burns was a member. So also were Wm. Dunbar, W.S., AUx- 
ander Cunningham, Peter Hill, Robert Cleghorn, and other 
Edinburgh acquaintances of the Poet. It was a convivial club, a 
club of high jinks and broad humour — in short, a Bachelor Club 
in which the proprieties were kept in abeyance during most of the 
sederunt. Cleghorn got closest to Burns's heart, and having a 
penchant for the canticular facetiae of his native land, which 
Burns was engaged collecting as hints for expurgated rendeiings 
in Johnson's and Thomson's Collections, whenever the Poet 
came across a specially brilliant " black diam,ond " he passed it 
on to Cleghorn " for his spiritual nourishment and growth in 
grace," and as often as not " with the Devil's blessing." One of 
these free-spoken ditties, "The Gre)- Goose and the Gled,' lie 
sent, in a spirit of mischief, to staid George Thomson as a candi 
date for admission to his immaculate drawing-room collection, on 
the plea that the tune was entitled " Cunmock Psalms," and 
nobody could reasonably object to a psalm. We can fancy old 
George transfixed with horror at this ])roof of the depravity of the 


Scottish peasantry, and the uproarious hilarity amongst the 
Crochallan Fencibles when Burns related the incident. This, 
then, is the true explanation of the " postscripts " attached to Cleg- 
horn's letters which Byron could not possibly understand, and which, 
being in Burns's hand, led to his utter bewilderment and the 
strong expressions to which he gave utterance. GilfiUan's ignor- 
ance left him as far at sea ; but mark how he uses the material to 
buttiess up the main charge. We will have something to say 
about GilfiUan's predilections and mental characteristics further 
on. Having proved his case to the hilt, as he thought, he could 
afford to be generous. Burns wrote what of the Merry Muses is 
attributed to him, he says, " while in a state of intoxication." 
Apud moriuis riil nid bonum ; yet " Blessed are the merciful, for 
they shall obtain mercy." Gilfillan certainly knew something 
about alcohol. The " postcripts " which appear in the Cleghorn 
correspondence were really advance co{)ies of the old ribald 
effusions which Burns wrote down in a book devoted to the 
purpose, which was kept under lock and key and shown only to 
the rollicking members of the Crochallan Club or to most 
intimate friends, like M'Murdo. This is what he said when 
forwarding that book to M'Murdo. The letter is dated 
December, 1793. 

" I think I once mentioned something of a collection of -Scots songs I 
have for some years been making ; I send you a perusal of what I have got 
together. I could not conveniently spare them above five or six days, and five or 
six glances will probably more than suffice you. A very few of the mare my own. 
When you are tired of them, please leave them vvilh Mr Clint of the King's 
Arms. There is not another copy of the collection in the world ; and I 
should be sorry that any unfortunate negligence should deprive me of what lia^ 
cost me a good deal of pains." 

This speaks for itself. There is no gloating over the garnered 
obscenity ; it was the raw material from which he evolved 
" John Anderson, my jo," '' Gin a body," " Green grows the 
rashes," &c., the filthy originals of which have to be perused 
before the true value can be put upon Burns's work and the full 
measure of thanks accorded him for the lyrical reformation he 



effected at the cost of the libel upon his memory we are presently 

Observe, then, that in every examination of the subject, a 
di-tinction must be made between tlie " Crochallan " confidences 
of his correspondence and the coilecuMn which he niade of "The 
Merry Muses of Caledonia." No doubt much of the latter found 
its way into the former, but the Cleghorn letters cannot be 
founded on as proof of the main charge, and Gilfillan refers to 
them, as he did to the nanieless innkeeper, only as collateral 
and utterly irrelevant evidence for the prosecution. It will be 
evident to you by this time that I huld the opinion that (liifiilan 
had an anmuis against Burns. Well ! nut exactly He dis- 
claimed this again and again in his own iuipetuous, vehement 
\\ay ; yet, nevertheless, the fact remains that he has done more 
to blacken the reputation of Burns than any writer before or 
since his day. The reason is that he was a most dogmatic and 
overbearing man, possessed of the most overweening conficlence 
in himself, impatient of the opinions of others, and obstinate to 
the last d'-gree in holding to first conclusions against the strongest 
and clearest evidence that they were nntenable. The late I)r 
James Adams, of this city, whose warm friendship I long enjoyed, 
and whose memory I revere as the G.O.M. of the Burns cull, 
knew Ciilfillan personally, and I have scores of letters from him 
on this and many other subjects connected with the Bard. He 
told me that Gilfillan began, when a young man, with the fi>;ed 
belief that Burns's record in Dumfries was of the blackest 
character, so black indeed that he considered him fit for anything 
ai^d everything that could be alleged against him. He shut his 
ears to everything that told in Burns's favour — the testimony of 
Findlater, Gray, Maria Riddell, Syme, and all else — and held 
blindly aiid doggedly to what he had first committed himself to. 
His opinions in 1878 were precisely those he held in 1847, which 
were built on similar flimsy foundations. In the 143rd number 
of f^oggs Instructor (1847) he thus delivers himself: — 

" Burns, hy all the accounts we heard on tlie spot, did sink very low in 
Dumfries, associate! with vile persons, and made himself viler than they; 


and that raging animalism, which was loo ofieii predominant, came here to 
its height. Dr Wightman, of Kirkmahoe, totd us he had met him once^ but 
by this time he was desperate and at bay, vomiting forth obscenity, blasphemy, 
fierce ribaldry, and invective. Alas ! the mouth which once chanted the 
" Cottar's Saturday Night " on the Sabbath day, to his entranced brother 
Gilbert, was now an open sepulchre, full of uncleanness and death. His 
eloquence, once so pure, even in its wildness and mirth, was now a hideous 
compost of filth and fire. Death never did a more merciful act than when he 
closed the most living lips that ever spake in Scotland — the lips of Robert 

This is not germane to our subject ; but mark again the 
Gilfillan method. A hair-raising indictment founded on what 
" Dr Wightman told me," for he had met Burns once. The 
corroborating witness is " all the accounts we heard." He was 
not allowed to get off with this. Hugh Macdonald, of Rambles 
fame, at once tackled him and gave him such a trouncing that 
the Great Gilfillan lost his temper and gave himself away in the 
most complete and ignominious way. The correspondence, 
which appeared in the Citizen, was afterwards published in 
pamphlet form (now exceedingly scarce), which was reproduced in 
the Ch'oniclt (No. IV., 1895), to which volume I refer all 
interested for a rare Burnsian treat. Gilfillan's reply shows the 
man he was, better thin any description — 

" ' So over violent, or over civil, 

That every man with him was god or devil ' — 

as my revered friend, Dr Adams, described him." I have referred 
to this pamphlet in order to show the drift at that date of 
enlightened Burnsian opinion on the Merry Muses question. 
Gilfillan, writhing under the lash of "good old Hugh," forsakes 
" Dr Wightman and all accounts " and lugs in the following : — 

" Did Burns write nothing; el^e in Dumfries ? Did ' a ' Mr Hugh 
Macdonald ever happen to hear of a production called the Merry Muses, or 
did he ever hear of a collection of MS. letters which Allen, Sir James 
Mackintosh's friend, showed Lord Byron, in which high-drawn raptures of 
sentimentalism (' glittering froth,' I fear) and beautiful songs, were intermixed 
with scraps of disgusting obscenity — letters which made Byron call him 
(anticipating his own epitaph) a combination of 'dirt and deity'? ^ A' Mr 


Hus^h MacdoHHk! oui^lil really to know ;i little nmie of his subject eie he 

b rues 

He adds a " P.S.,'" fully as long as the letter itself, containing 
the follovvmg return to the charge : — 

'■ Hut when we, on the other hand, look to the evidence of general 
impression — to the testimony of such men as Dr Wightman — and, above all, 
to the dreadful documentary evidence contained in the disgusting lewdness of 
the Merry Muses and the unpublished letters, I am forced lo conclude that 
Gray, &c., have only told part of the truth." 

I forbear remark on this. What did Dr Hedderwick, of the 
Citizen, say to all this ? He " inserts " Gilfillan's splenetic 
effusion '' with considerable pain, c\:c." On the Merry Muses he 
ventures o.ily this : — 

" With regard to the disreputable book on which he lays so much stress^ 
we have always understood that it contained an amount of trash which Burns 
never could have written. On this subject, however, we speak with 

What did Hugh say %— 

"'^" Mr Hugh Macdonald has heard of the .'l/^/vj il/«j£5, and from 
parties well qualified to judge whether there was such a thing as a spark of 
Burns in the book, and has been assured that a production so devoid of 
' sense and mirih and wit,' not to .speak of decency, could not, by the most 
distant possibility, have come from the pen of Robert Burns. Mr Gilfillan 
may be better able to speak of the production, as he has apparently had an 
opportunity of ' wallowing in its mire.' " 

Very good — but not nearl\- strong enough to meet the attack. 
He should have called for "the dreadful documentary evidence," 
and brought the house of cards at once to the ground. But the 
clauses of the indictment were so vague, and the facilities for 
reference so few in those days (the MS. market had scarce made 
a beginning), that Hugh Macdonald did wisely in confining 
himself to what he knew, and meeting the swaggering statements 
of the Rev. Swashbuckler with cjuiet and firm denial in absence 
of the slightest tittle of proof. 'Fhe Merry Muses insinuation was 
always Gilfillan's trump-card, and when he threw it on the table 
he demanded the stakes, though, when it was examined, it was but 


a piece of cardboard with no face value. Gilfillan was in 1878 
exactly what he was in 1847, and he would have continued the 
same to the present day had life been vouchsafed him, so 
unreasoning was his obstinacy, so persistent his belief in his own 
infallibility. He refused to be guided by modern research, and 
scorned the labours of previous editors. What Gilfillan thought 
was Burns's was bound to be Burns's, and so we find such 
heresies as (I cull them at random) " Happy vve are a' 
thegilher," "To a Kiss," "To My Bed," "Jocky's ta'en the 
Pairtin' Kiss," and many others authoritatively incorporated 
in his text. And so far as a cursory glance at the con- 
tents informs me, about one-fourth of the songs he credits 
to Burns are old fragments amended in line or stanza Irom 
the rough copies in the very MS. book which formed the 
basis of Gilfillan's repeated attacks. A third party intervened 
in the Citizen controversy — Mr Pattison. of Carnbroe, son of Mr 
Pattison, Kelvin Grove, Glasgow — who gives an account of a 
visit his father and he paid to Burns in the autumn of 1795 — 
nine or ten months before the Poet's death — and of dining with 
Burns and Dr Maxwell in the chief hotel at Dumfries. He goes 
into details of what he saw of Burns's behaviour and the general 
esteem in which he was held ; in the end characterising the 
Giilillan Wightman statement as "an abominable calumny." But 
a hundred testimonies of this kind would have no effect upon 
Gilfillan, who, to the last, stuck to the printed volume, White and 
Wightman, the " other accounts," and "general impression," as 
evidence incontrovertible by his own age and all the ages to 

Careful and painstaking Robert Chambers writes :— 

" Unluckily, Burns's collection of these facetia' (including his own 
essiiys in the same walk) fell, after his death, into the hands of one of those 
publishers who would sacrifice the highest interests of humanity to put an 
additional penny into their own purses ; and, to the lasting grief of all the 

friends of our Poet, they were allowed the honours of the press 

It may also serve as a curious study to those who take a delight in estimating 
-the possible varieties of intellectual mood and of social sensation of which our 


nature is capable. The ' niean-lookint; volume " should he a warning; to alF 
honourable men of letters against the slightest connection with clandestine 
literature, much more to the degradation of contribuiing to it." 

Dr Wallace adds that all the editions of the book differ from 
each other, which is substantially correct ; but. being bound by 
Charnbers's text, he has not gone further. 1'he " s/ightest 
cofinectiojt" says Robert Chambers — and we are of ojjinion that, 
when he wrote this (1851), the evidence before him did not show 
how "slight" that connection was in Burns's case. 

When I wrote the Chronicle article I was not aware that 
Scott Douglas had previously broken the silence which had too 
long prevailed upon the subject. His contribution will be found 
in the Appendix to Lock hart s Life of Burns : (London : George 
Bell <.V Sons : 1892.) Incorporated in it is the opinion of 
Wordsworth, who in 1816 had perused the "mean-looking 
volume " : — 

" He must be a miserable judge," says Wordsworth, "of poetical com- 
positions who can for a moment fancy that such low, tame, and loathsome 
ribaldry can possibly be the production of Burns. With the utmost difficulty 
we procured a slight perusal of the ab miinable pamphlet alluded to. The 
truth is (and we speak on the best authority this country can produce) there is 
not one verse in that miscellany that ever was publicly acknowledged by 
Burns, nor is tbere above a single page that can be traced to his manuscript. " 

I know not on what authority Scott Douglas extends that 
page to "at least a dozen of wildly witty productions that would 
certainly have lietrayed their own parentage, even if copies of 
them did not exist, as they certainly do, in Burns's handwriting." 
He knew, or ought to have known, that a MS. in the hand- 
writing of Bnrns is no proof, per se, that he is the author of it. I 
have seen genuine MSS. of two of these ribald ditties, and both 
were in circulation before Burns's da)-. Scott Douglas, in his Kil- 
marnock Edition, speaks of a number of these MSS. bought by a 
Mr Greenshields, of Lesmahagow, who made a bonfire of them, 
to his lasting credit, but whether they were dismembered sheets 
of the Poet's MS. book, or " Crochallan " copies of them, we are 
left to guess. Sett Douglas discovered, as I did, after much 


nauseating effort, " that no two printed copies of the book areahke 
in the quantity and quality of their respective contents. The 
most geiiuine-lo<;king of these (judging from the a[)parent age of 
the paper and printing) that has come to our hands is a i2mo. 
volume of 127 pages, in pretty large type of obsolete fount, con- 
taining about ninety songs, among which are at least half-adozen 
that are found in every ordinary edition of Burns's poems." This 
hall-dozen, then, that everybody knows of, fall to he subtracted 
from the dozen which "betray their own parentage," leaving half- 
a-dozen as the extent of Burns's sinning out of a total of ninety. 
Curiously, the identical copy which passed through Scott Douglas's 
hands also fell into mine. It contained his notes in pencil on the 
margins or under the titles, and I must say they formed rather 
curious reading. Some were marked "Certainly by Burns"; 
others, "Perhaps by Burns"; a third set, "Amended 
by Burns"; and a fourth, "Old." There was no hint 
given in the book itself of authorship, and I looked 
in vain for corroboration of the pencil notes ; I found 
none. They were Mr Douglass own opinions, and nothing 
more — the outcome of his Burns instinct (to coin a phrase), and 
therefore not to be relied upon, to say the least of it. It is the 
written record, and the written record alo?ie, to which we mu>t 
appeal for proof of Burns's connection with " this clandestine 
literature," and that record I laid bare in the Chronicle article 
I have so often referred to, and utilised it fairly and honestly to 
the best of my ability. The sum total I make out to be six 
(surely a proof itself when two independent enquiries resulted in 
the same figure), and one of these is the well known " Gouden 
Locks o' Anna." " A few of these are my own." Yes ! Burns 
never yet has been convicted of lying ; on the contrary, his 
honesty in this connection, as in every other, has been his un- 
doing. What more is there in that confession than half the 
world, were it only half as honest, could confess of the "original 
sin " of bachelor stories in bachelor clubs, the modern demand 
for prurient novels, and the insatiable curiosity which centres 
in the proceedings of the divorce courts ? 


On our siibi(.'(-i 1 U nlr\- savs. and he s,i)s no nioie :— " He 
wns made welcome (in Edinburgh) by the ribald, scholarly, hnrd- 
drinking wits and jinkers of the Crochallan Fencibles, for whose 
use and edification he made the unique and precious co/Iecfion now 
called the Merry Muses of Calfdoniar This is a remarkable 
statement, coming from such a source, yet scarcely correct. The 
first purpose of the ''Collection "" was for Burnss own use and the 
purification of Scottish song. The evidence still stands in the 
Chrdiiicie unassailed, and the conclusions unquestioned. Il may 
be, but I make no assertion, that the Burns Federation, through 
its accredited organ, the Bums Chronic/e, had something to do 
with Mr Henley's unwonted restraint when he reached the 
Gilfillan indictment in the composition of his essay. It would be 
remiss on my part, when speaking of Henley's views on this 
subject, if 1 passed over what he says of a letter which found its 
way into the modern reprints of The Merry Muses along with the 
English and Irish filth, which, from time to time, was ndded as 
caviore to the putiifying mass. " The original must be read, " 
says Henley, "or the reader will never wholly understand what 
manner of man the writer was. The letter was addressed to 
Robert Ainslie, and bears date 3rd March, 1788, and it was 
posted at Mauchline. I say at once that it would have been 
better this Irtter had never been written, and it certainly should 
never have been preserved tiy a friend of Burns, not to speak of 
an intimate like Ainslie. It is a bachelor cominunicaticn to a 
bachelor friend, and Burns never did things by halves. But 
much of the Henleyan sting is taken away by the reflection that 
Burns was married to Jean Armour in the spring of 1786, and. in 
the letter under discussion, he was speaking of his wife. Old 
Armour's burning of the " matriage lines " could not annul the 
"irregular marriage '" for which Burns and Jean were reproved in 
1788, and taken bound to adhere to each oiher during their 
natural lives. All Jean's children were b( rn in wedlock, and 
when Mr Auld gave Burns a certificate as a bachelor he was in 
entire ignorance of the mairiage which had taken place previous 
to the appearance of both before the Session for discipline as 


unmarried persons. This is how Ainslie treated Burns. How 
did Burns treat " his little affair '' with the ploughman's daughter 
at Dunse? * Robert Ainsle, W.S., Berrywell, Dunse, died in the 
odour of respectability and conventional sanctity long after 
Burns ; but, to my thinking, he does not appear well in the 
correspondence he had with Cromek. Whatever he may have 
been in his earlier years he certainly developed more than a 
suspicion of priggishness in his later. Burns thus writes of him 
to Clarinda (June 25tb, 1794) : — 

" I had a letter from him a while ago, but it was so dry, so distant, so 
like a card to one of his clients, that I could scarce bear to read it, and have 
not yet answered it. He is a good honest fellow, and can write a friendly 
letter. . . . Though Fame does not blow her trumpet at my approach 
tww, as she did then, when he first honoured me with his friendship, yet I am as 
proud as ever ; and when I am laid in my grave, I wish to be stretched at my 
full length, that I may occupy every inch of the ground I have a right to." 

I must now draw the threads of the discussion together 

I. It may be held proved that Burns did form a collection of old 

Scots songs of a ribald nature for his own use and the 
amusement of the Crochallan Club. 

II. 'I'hat he was aware of its value as a historical and literary 

curiosity, and treasured it as similar records, such as The 
\\\stmi)ister Drolleries and Pills to Purge Melancholy, have 
been preserved in England ; but he was keenly alive to the 
necessity of keeping it from the gaze of the merely curious 
and prurient-minded. 

HI 'i'h;,t It was filched from his wife after his decease, or from 
I)r Currie on false pretences and never returned. 

IV. 'Iluit the probability is (it is only a probability) that it was 
|iiinted in Dumfries, circa 1800, roughly and coarsely, and 
a bmited number put in circulation. 

V. PiesLiming that it was a faithful reproduction of the original, it 

coniains 85 compositions in verse. Burns's name appears 

■•• See " Robin shure in hairst.'' 


nowhere in the hook, tlie title of which is " The Merry Muses 
of CaleJouia — A Collection of Favourite Scots Songs (ancient 
and modern) selected for the use of the Crochallan Fencibles." 

VI. Of these 85 compositions, only 40 appeared in any subse- 
quent reprint, nor did any subsequent leprint pretend to be 
in any way connected with the first or " Crochallan " edition. 

VII. That a collection of filth was [)rinted in Dublin, prior to 
1827, bearing the title Merry Muses, without any reference 
whatever to Burns, 

VIII. That in 1827 a similar collection, with 42 additional pieces, 
was '• Privately Printed " somewhere. On the title-page we 
read " The Merry A/uses — A Choice Collection of Favourite 
Songs gathered from many sources, by Robert Burns ; to 
which is added two of his Letters and a Puem — hitherto 
suppressed — and never before printed." One of the letters 
is that which I have just referred to, the other will be found 
in almost any standard edition. 'i"he poem is "The Court 
of Equity," which the curious will find printed almost 
verbatim in the last issue of the Aldyne Edition, edited by 
my friend, Mr G. A. .A.itken. 

We need go no further. It was in 1827 that the name of 
Burns was first associated with the omnium ga'herum of the 
canticular abominations of the three countries, which is as like 
the " Crochallan " volume as " Tom Jones " to the " Vicar of 
Wakefield. " The modern reprints are merely copies of the 
villainous issue of 1827, and are produced everywhere — the copy 
in my possession being printed some twenty years ago in Glasgow 
— a book costing 6d in the get-up and sold at 20/-, or as much 
more as can be got for it. That is the secret of its perennial 
appearance as an exceedingly rare and valuable book, of which 
new copies are produced whenever the old ones are worked off. 

When you come across a copy, read the preface, and note 
the printer's errors. It is disreputable in type, careless and 
deplorably ignorant in the editing, loathsome in its illiterate 


attempt to make out Burns to be a very small figure in the galaxy 
of cloven-hoofed saints who are set down as the authors of nine- 
tenths of the odoriferous anthology. The book, apart from 
antiquarian considerations, is fit only for the dunghill after merci- 
ful mutilation. And so I leave the subject. " An honest man's 
the noblest work of God " was a favourite quotation, and Bums 
was such a man — so honest that he is always the chief witness for 
his own prosecution. 

[We understand thai a limited reprint of the Crochailan volume, wiili 
introduction and notes, is about to he issued by the successors of James M'Kie, 
Kilmarnock, for subscribers only. The niolif is commendable, and we 
wish it all success. — Etmtor.] 



FoHuded jS68. Federated iSS^. 
Foktv-Sk.cond Annual Genkrai, Meetinc. 

The Forty-second Annual General Meeting was held in the Royal Scottish 
•Corporation Hall, 7 Crane Court, Fleet Street, E.C., on Thursday, September 
29lh, 1 9 10. 

The President, Mr James Thomson, occupied the chair, and was 
supported by the Vice-President, Mr Neil Turner, a strong attendance of 
past presidents, officers, and other members of the Club. 

The Minutes of last General Meeting having been read, were approved 
of, and signed by the President. 

Correspondence having been duly dealt with, the Hon. Secretary read the 
Report of liie Delegates from the Club to the Annual Meeting of the Burns 
Federation, held at Lanark on September 3rd. 

The President then made his report upon the work of the year, and the 
Hon. Treasurer gave his financial statement, which were received with great 
satisfaction. The President's speech is printed in extenso herein. 

Votes of thanks were moved and carried unanimously to the Delegates, 
the Hon. Treasurer, the Committee, the Auditors, the Hon. Pipers, the M.C.'s, 
and to the ladies, and a special message was heartily passed to be sent to Mr 
Andrew G. Soulter, the father of the Club. 

Mr Neil Turner having expressed his acceptance of office, became 
President-Elect, and Mr G. St. John M 'Donald was elected Vice-President for 
the ensuing year. 

It was resolved to hereafter hold the Annual Business Meeting towards 
the end of the month of May. 

A past president's jewel, with a miniature portrait of Burns, was 
unanimously voted to be presented to the retiring President, Mr James 
Thomson, at the Hallowe'en Festival. 

The sum of two guineas was voted to the Royal Scottish Hospital. 

Mr Duncan M'Naught, J. P., President, and Mr Thomas Amos, M.A., 
Hon. Secretary of the Burns Federation, were unanimously elected to honorary 
iiiembersliip of the Club. 


Mr Durham having declined re-election as Hon. Secretary, was accorded 
a warm vote of thanks for his voluntary services during the past year, to which 
he replied vvith feeling, expressing his regret at being unable to continue the 
onerous duties longer than the approaching Hallowe'en Meeting. 

Several new members were elected, but as the President reported, there 
are still some vacancies caused by deaths, and resignations of members moving 
from London or gone abroad, and a few who, having allowed their subscrip- 
tions to fall into arrears, have been, in accordance with the rules, struck off 
the roll. 

After a hearty vote of thanks to the Chairman, who responded, the 
meeting terminated with " Auld Lang Syne "' and National Anthem. 


The members will be gratified to learn that the London Robert Burns 
Club has had not only a successful year socially, but, as is shown by the Hon. 
Treasurer's audited accounts and statement, a most satisfactory financial 
result, with a pleasant balance at the bank to go on with. 

My reign of office has been a short and happy one. From the moment 
of my investiture with the presidential collar and jewel until now it has been 
everything a man could wish for. I have been most loyally supported by 
every past president and member of the executive, and I may well add by 
every active member of the Club, for which my appreciative thanks are due 
and given with all sincerity. 

There is one member in particuhr, however, to whom not only I as your 
President, but to whom the whole Club is very deeply indebted, and you all 
know I refer to our Hon. Secretary, Henry Durham. At this time last year, 
when the difficalty unexpectedly arose of finding a successor to the acting 
Hon. Secretary pro teiii., Mr Durham proffered his services for the ensuing 
twelve months. This was readily accepted, and I can only say that his 
loyaltv to the President, his zeal and work on behalf of the Club, has been 
in a great measure the means of bringing us into the happy position we are at 
this time. \'erily, one volunteer is truly worth twenty pressed men. 

Our forty-second Anniversary Festival fortunately proved more successful 
than was feared from the lack of a room large enough for such a big function. 
Yet everything passed off well, as was recorded in the most handsome brochure 
published, without expense to the Club, by the kindness of our Vice-President, 
Neil Turner. Our next Festival is to be held in the Empire suite of rooms at 
the Trocadero, which offers us double the accommodation of last year, .so you 
can all invite as many guests as you wi-h, with promise of even a better night 
than last. 

The three assemblies of our forty-second season were each and all 
thoroughly enjoyable gatherings. The attendance was a marked increase upon 


previous years, and the dancers expressed satisfaction with the excellent music 
provided, especially the two sets of Lancers, written by Mr Tom Taylor for 
the Club, introducing many of the beautiful melodies of Burns's love songs, 
which gave great delight. 

As was stated in the last circular issued, the Summer P'estival was a 
complete success — delightful weather, perfect catering, splendid accommoda- 
tion, and excellent company. The attendance this year was back again to 
twenty less than last year. So the question arises — was last year's better 
attendance because the picnic was held on a Saturday ? If that is so, then let 
us try Saturday again. If that is a busier day on the river or other pleasure 
tesoris, well, after all, a bit of a stir only adds to the gaiety of the occasion. 

You have heard the report of the Delegates to the annual meeting of the 
Burns Federation held at Lanark on 3rd inst. It was a matter of poignant 
disappointment to me that I was unable at the last moment to accompany the 
delegates to represent No. i Club, but the best thanks of us all are due to our 
Vice-President (Neil Turner), Hon. Treasurer (C. J. Wilkinson- Pimbury), and 
Hon. Secretary (Henry Durham) for travelling such a long distance and so 
abiy representing our Club. As you have learned, our Hon. Secretary, being 
a Vice-President of the Federation, was invited to attend the Executive 
meeting at Kilmarnock in August, summoned to make arrangements for the 
Lanark meeting, and it was a great compliment to our Hon. Secretary in 
person and to our Club in general that he should have been called to occupy 
the chair at this imporiant meeting of the officers of the P'ederation. 

It is, of course, a furllier compjimeni to tlie Club as well as a liigh honour 
to me that I should have been elected Representative of the Burns Federation 
in the Metropolis. It is a compliment I confess that I am very proud of, and 
I hope the Club will give me support in furthering the Federation ideals. Let 
us concur with our delegates in the hope that some day not many years hence 
the Federation Delegates will hold their annual meeting in London and let us 
give them a great time. 

The Club has every reason to be grateful to the ladies for so graciously 
and loyally supporting by their charming presence all the festivals, assemblies, 
and other social gatherings of the Club. We have no discontented suffragettes 
demanding full membership. The ladies rather recognise that we grant them 
a full measure of our allegiance, every possible privilege ; and while we miss 
their society on this occasion we do not forget that they are a large asset 
towards the C(jniinued prosperity of the Club. 

But recollect this : We are Club No. i on the roll of the Burns Federa- 
tion, and as such we must take the lead. We offer excellent value for the 
subscription demanded — no London Club gives more or better opportunities 
for social reunions, and our motto is an imperishable principle ever before us, 


•while the memory of our patron Bard and founder must flourish for ever, for 
which it is our great privilege to uphold the banner in the world's Metropolis. 

Programme of the Forty Third Season. 
Oct. 5. Opening Concert. 
,, 31. The Hallowe'en Festival and Installation of Neil Turner, Esq., 
Pre.-ident-Elect — Venetian Rooms, Holhorn Restaurant. 
Nov. 27. Annual United Church Service (St. Coluniba's) — Pont Street, 

Bejgravia, S.W., at 3.15 p.m. 
Dec. 9. First Assembly of Forty-Third Season — Portman Rooms, Baker 

1911. Street. 

Jan. 25. Forty-Tliird Annual Birthday Anniversary Festival — Empire Rooms, 

Fell. 10. Second Assembly — Portman Rooms. 
Mar. 10. Third Assembly — Portman Rooms. 
Apr. II. (probably)— Whist Parly. 

May — Annual General Meeting — Royal Scottish Corporation Hall. 
June - Summer Festival— A visit to Stratford-on-Avon. 
Sep. 2. Annual Meeting of the Burns Federation — Glasgow. 

Any gentleman desiring to join the Club can have all information of the 
Honorary Secretary, London Robert Burns Club, Byron House, 85 Fleet 
Street, E.C. Telephone No., 4047 Central. 


Club Meetings are held in Club Rooms, 36 Nicholson Street, at 8 p.m. 

Another successful season lalls to be recorded. The attendance and 
interest of the members have been well maintained. Lectures were delivered 
by M'Donald, Mr A. S. Mories, and Mr J. Fra.ser Paton. Smoking 
Concerts were held on the Annual and Quarterly Meetings and on St. Andrew's 
Night, when a deputation was received from the Rosebery Burns Club, 
Glasgow. The Ladies' Nights were very successful, and the accommodation 
was taxed to the utmost, the concerts being given by parties introduced by 
Mr J. G. Mackail and Mr Ernest C. Brown. 

The 108th Annual Celebration was held in the Tontine Hotel. Sir 
Hugh Shaw Stewart, Part., proposed the "Immortal Memory" in a very 
interesting speech. 

The Annual Pilgrimage of members and lady friends took place in 
September to Ayr, Kirkoswald, and Culzean Castle. The weather being 
perfect, a most enjoyable day was spent. 


On 25th January the " Immorlal Memory" will be proposed by the 
Hon. President, The Right Rev. ,\rclui. Kan Campbell, D.D., Bishop of 
Glasgow and Gallowa)-. 

SYLLABUS — 1 910- 191 1. 


Oct. 27. Annual Meeting. Election of Office-bearers, &c. 

Nov. 22. Visit to Rosebery Burns Club, Glasgow. 

,, 25. Ladies' Night. Concert Party — Introduced by Mr John T. Park. 

.. 30. St. Andrew's Night. 

Dec. 8. Lecture, " Choosing "" — Rev. James M'Kechnie. 


Jan. 17. Lecture, " Maeterlinck and his Works "'—Rev. ,\. C. Baird. 

,, 25. 109th Annual Celebration. 

Feb. — Ladies' Night. Concert Party — Introduced by Mr Ernest C. 


March 9. Lecture, " Scottish Song" — Mr James Beatlie. 

April 12. Quarterly Meeting. 

Thirteenth Annu.\l Report— Atril, 1910. 

The report of our Burns Club for the year ending April, 1910, is much 
the same as formerly. Like most institutions of this nature, we seem to have 
reached a standard of perfection and development which leaves little room for 

The broadening out of the rules of the Club is a point whicii must com- 
mend itself. Let me just in passing touch the fringe of the question. Burns 
is not confined to Scotland as a poet, why confine the admiration of his genius 
to Scotsmen ? Bums is a world's inspiration. Why not ask the whole com- 
munity to come and worship at the shrine of him who has given every man 
(who can use it) the inspiration of higher and nobler things? 


The Annual Meeting of last year was well attended. It is pleasing to 
note the interest maintained in our Annual Meetings, which is a healthy sign. 

Notice of motion to alter Rule VII., so that the meetings could be held 
monthly, was defeated by a large majority. In order to comply with the new 
arrangements this rule was altered so that our meetings would be held on the 
second and fourth Wednesdays from October to March, and the second 
Wednesdays of April, May, and September. The reports \*ere well received, 
the Librarian reporting several additions to the Librar\-. The Treasurer re- 


ported a reduction of the credit balance, which, however, was considered 
satisfactory in view of the conditions prevailing throughout the previous year. 
The election of officers filled up a pleasant and final meeting in the Grand 


The Annual Festival of 1910 will be remembered as a crowning point in 
our history. Mr Samuel Storey, M.P., was the guest of the evening, and, 
without the least discourtesy to our former guests, we may say Mr Storey did 
what no other man has done for us, i.e., he presented a picture of Burns from 
a tragic point of view ; added value was given to his utterances from the fact 
that he looked upon Burns from an Englishman's standpoint. Herein we 
were fortunate, for Mr Storey knew his subject, and did ample and complete 
justice to it. Let me quote from his speech : — " To pass to the serene 
heights of poesy to do honour to the name and to celebrate the memory of a 
man who though dead yet liveth, and will for ever live in the hearts not only 
of his own countrymen but of the civilized world." 

The other speeches were well delivered, and the musical programme well 
sustained. Our Honorary President, Aid. W. Burns, J-I'-> occupied the 
chair, and directed the proceedings. 


The Annual Scottish Concert of tlie Club was held in the Victoria Hall 
on Tuesday, February ist, 1910. The weather immediately preceding this 
date was the most severe experienced for many years, and may have somewhat 
affected the attendance. 

The musical arrangements were again in the hands of Mr J. C. Lumsden, 

The Artistes were — Miss Kate Wallace, Miss Nina Horsburgh, Mr 
John Jamieson, Mr Philip Malcolm, and Mr Bob Sloan. 

Our Hon. Piper, Mr Geo. Murray, gave selections on the bagpipes, which 
were much appreciated. 

The question of our connection with the Concerts Association is one 
which demands our immediate attention. I feel sure the time has now 
arrived when we should fall into line with the larger towns, or even go on our 
own ; it would be better for us and for the North of England in general. 

The number of readers shows a slight increase on the previous year. 
Surely we could do a little better — the works deserve it — and I feel sure the 
editor does everything possible to make it attractive. Let us support him and 
his colleagues of the Federation Executive by each of our members being 
readers of the annual Btinis Chronicle and Chth Directory. 








. 10. 



1 L'C. 

Good liuok^ and yuod liicialiuc arc hy sjido reason or other not 
appreciated, but as Burns said " The day will come." It is coming, but 
meantime we want our members to carefully read the lUinis Chrcuiclc. 


We started the )ear with sixty members, during the year three members 
have been added, one has resigned, one has left the district, five have been 
struck off, leaving us with fifty-six active members at the close of the year. 

The question of opening the membership has been under consideration, 
with the result that at this meeting the question of altering Rule XI. will come 
up for consideration. 


President's Address — Mr M. MacLennan. 

" Land o' the Leal"' Authorship — Messrs Mackay and Turner. 
"Orkney and the Orkney Folks"— Mr W. R. Rae. 
"Jacobite Song and Story" (illustrated) — Mr W. Jackson 
Dec. S. Visit to North Shields Caledonian Society. 

Jan. 12. Visit from Newcastle Burns Chib. 

,, 25. Anniversary Dinner (Palatine Hotel) — Samuel Storey, Es(i., J.P. 
Feb. I. Scottish Concert (Victoria Hall). 
9. " \"oltaire"'— Mr G. W. Gardiner. 
,, 23. X'isit from North .Shields Caledonian Society. 
Mar. 9. \'isit to Newcastle Burns Clui). 

,, 23. Smoking Concert. 
Apr. 13. Business Meeting. 

May II. Annual .Meeting : Election of Ofticers. 
Sept. 13. Business .Meeting. 

During the year we have to acknowledge the great kindness of our Hon. 
President, Aid. W. Burns, J.P. With his usual forethought, he has pro- 
vided us with a suitable bookcase for the use of the Librarian. 

It was quite an interesting gathering, on February 23rd, when the 
Alderman attended and asked the Club's acceptance of the handsome 
mahogany bookcase, which now graces our meeting room, at the same time 
presenting the Library with a copy of Scottish Poems. The President, Mr 
MacLennan, on behalf of the Club, accepted the gift, and thanked the .\lder- 
man, expressing the wish that he might be long spared to go out and in 
amongst us. 

Our Hon. Piper, Mr George Murra\-, has always been ready and willing 
at all times to do whatever lies in his power in the interests of the Club. He 


has appeared at our Annual Scottish Concerts and our Anniversary Dinners 
with honour to himself and credit to our Club. It was felt that we ought to 
acknowledge in a small way our appreciation of his services thus willingly 
rendered for our enjoyment. Alderman Burns, on behalf of the Club, asked 
Mr Murray to accept three sets of bagpipe reeds, and hoped that he would 
find thein useful in discoursing our national mc.sic at cur gatherings. Mr 
Murray thanked the Alderman and Club for the unexpected token of apprecia- 
tion, and would be ready and willing at all limes to do his best for the Club. 


We have to record the loss by death of our esteemed Hon. Vice- 
President, the late Rev. David Tasker, which took i)lace in Newcastle on 
Tuesday, April I2lh, 1910. The deceased gentleman proposed the 
" Immortal Memory"' at our Anniversary Dinner in 1901, and was present in 
the following year, when he replied to the toast of " The Lasses, O." He 
always took a keen interest in the welfare of our Club, nnd was a true Scot, 
and much admired by a large circle of friends. Our sympathy was conveyed 
to the bereaved widow and family. 

M. Neii.son. Hon. Scireta-'V. 

Annual Rkpokt — Session 1909-10. 
The Club is now in its ^oih year and isthe third oldest club in Cla-gow It 
is tlie oldest affiliated Burns Club in Glasgow. The membership now stands 
at seventy, and the funds are in a satisfactory state. The meetings during 
the year have been fairly well attended, and the Annual Dinner was a great 
success. There were two suppers and two literary evenings. The Club was 
represented at the P'edcralion meeting at Lanark. The members have not: 
yet added to the Fund of /"4 is raised for the Chair of Scottish History- 
waiting to see the result of the Exhibition to be held in Glasgow next year. 
Life membership was successfully introduced, and has been largely taken 
advantage of. The committee deeply regret to report tiie loss by death of a 
former Director and member, Mr G. II. Forrest. The most interesting 
operation of the Club during the year was the renovating nf Mary Morrison's 
tombstone, which work was successfully accomplished during the summer, and 
a photograph of the stone has been put in the Club Minute Book. During 
the year visits were interchanged with the Albany Club. The Club also took 
part in a theatrical matinee for the Chair of Scottish History, which was very 
successful. The Club declined lo be represented at the opening of the Auld 
Brig of Ayr, being displeasetl with the manner in which the proceedings 
were carried out. 



Secretary's Rkpoki- — 1909-10. 

During the past year the work of the Club has followed its usual lines for 
the promuls^ation of the Burns cult. 

There were seven meetings of Directors 

©and six meetings of Members held during 
the Session. 
The Member.shipis still maintained at 150, 
according to the Rules. 
Papers were given during the year by 
I'asl- President Ileadrick ; Mr John Mac 
whannel, Treasurer, Glasgow School Board ; 
Kev. James Forrest, M.A. ; Mr Andrew 
Black, R.S.W. ; and Past - President 
Jamks Rakside. Picsi.l.-ni The first Smoking Concert of the Club 

was held on 3rd November in the Trades' House Restaurant, and was a 
great success ; about 150 being present. 

The Anniversary Dinner of the Club was held in the Grand Hotel, 
Chaiing Cross, on 25th January, the " Immortal .Memory'" being proposed by 
Mr_Geoege EyreTodd, author. 

Greeting Cards were exchanged with Clubs at home and abroad. 
The Yearly Singing and Reciting (;om[ietition from the IFor/.s of Burns 
by the children in Provanside Higher (jrade School was held in December 
last. The prizes given by the Club being four siher medals with clasp in 
cases, and 1 2 volumes. 

The Club was represented this year at the Burns I'^ederation Meeting at 
Lanark by Past- President Taylor, Mr R. D. Donaldson, and Mr R. 
Carmichael, the Secretary. 

The Representatives to the Glasgow and District Burns Association were 
the President and Secretary. 

The meetings of the Club have been well attended, and the Club is in a 
highly successful and flourishing condition. 

Oct. 5. Opening Address — Ex-President John A. Headrick. 
Nov. 2. '■ G(Kthe"s Early Manhood" — Louis Lubovius, Esq., Ph.D. 
Dec. 7. "Song-Singing" — ^John Russell, Esq. 
,, 16. Singing and Reciting Competition — Provanside School, North 
Montrose Street, at 7.30 p.m. 


Jan. II. " Robert Louis Stevenson" — Ex-Presideiit J. Wilson Bain. 

,, 25. "Immortal Memory" — Rev. J. H. Dickie, .M.A., New Kilpatricl<. 
Feb. I. " Odd Thoughts "—W. G. Hay, Esq. 
Mar. I. " Charles Kingsley "—Rev. David Dickie. 

The Club meets on the first Wednesday of each month (from October till 
March inclusive) in Thomas Smith & Son's Trades' House Restaurant, 89 
Glassford Street, at 7.30 p.m. Members have the privilege of introducing 

" Maclennaii^' Bowling Cup Covipelition. — This competition takes place 
in August, and members desirous of taking part in the game should send in 
their names to the Secretary not later than ist May. Entry Money, is 6d. 


Session 1910-11. 

The Mossgiel Club was instituted in 1893, and has for its objects the 
Annual Celebration of the Birthday of Robert Burns, occasional re-unions for 
the cultivation of social and intellectual intercourse amongst the members and 
friends, the encouragement of Scottish Literature, and to have a Summer Trip 
to some of the places dear to the lovers of the Poet. 

The Ordinary Meetings of the Club are held in Baronial Halls, 45 South 
Portland Street, on the first Tuesday of each month— November till April — at 
8 o'clock p.m. 

Nov. I. Lantern Lecture, "Aberdeen City, Ancient and Modern" — Wm. 

Tough, Esq. Followed by a Concert. 
Dec. 6. Address, "Scottish Songs and Ballads" (Vocal Illustrations) — T. L. 

Anderson, Esq., Headmaster, Abbotsford Public School. 
Jan. 25. Annual Dinner in Bath Hotel. "Immortal Memory'' by Wm. 

Lobban, Esq., M.A., Classical Master, Glasgow High School, 
Feb. 7. " At Home." 
Mar. 7. Lantern Lecture, " A Glimpse into the Mauchline Land of Burns '" 

(Vocal Illustrations) — Thos. KilHn, Esq., Treasurer, Mauchline 

Burns Homes. 
Apr. 4. Address — Duncan M'Naught, Esq., President, Burns Federation. 


r()si:bI'.ry burns club. 

The Rii;lu lion. The Kaui. ok Roskukkv, K.(;., K.T., X:c. 

SVLL.ABUS — 1910-11. 
Ocl. 18. Smoking Symposium (I'lesidenl's A(ldress) — Mv Ilui^h I'nton, J. P. 
Nov. I. " Hr Samuel Johnson'' — Rev. James Forfar. 
,, 22. \"isit from Cireenock Burns Club. '' Peer, PeasaiU and Poel "' — Mr 
James .Angus. 
Dec. 13. \isit from Carlton Burns Club. " Songs of the Poet," with musical 
illustrations (Special Ladies" Night) — Rev. Munro Sommerville, 
Jan. 10. " Scoikmd's Debt to Burns'" — Mr J. S. Jamieson. 

,, 25. Annual Dinner — Rev. I)r Smith. 
Feb. 14. Visit to Carlton Burns Club. "The Land of Burns" (\'iews and 
Songs) — ^John Taylor Gibb, Fsq., of .Mauchline. 
,, — Band of Hope Competition — Messrs .\ngus and Pollock. 
Mar. 7. Lecture, " Arran '' (illustrated by Limelight Lantern)— Mr JameS 

Apr. 4. Tattie-an'-Herrin' Supper. 
,, 25. Annual Business Meeting. 

The Club meets on Tuesdays at 7.45 p.m. in the Alexandra Hotel, iJaih 


93 I)or(;i.AS Stkkki-, Gi.ascow. 

SYLLABUS— 191011. 

Oct. 13. Opening Supper. 

,, 27. Lecture, " The Urama " — W. firaham Moffai, 1".m(. 
Nov. 10. Smoking Concert— Mr IL Turnbull. 

,, 24. Lecture, " The Editions of Burns's Poems printed in his lifetime 
J. C Ewing, Esq., Baillies Library. 
Dec. I. St. Andrew's Day Supper. 
,, 8. Smoking Concert — Mr John Waterson. 

,, 22. Lecture, " Robert Burns : Tiie Alleged Decadence at Dumfries.' 
D ^M'Naught, Esq., J. P. , President of the fjurns l-'ederatinn 

Jan. 19. Smoking Concert — Mr Thomas Bishop. 

,, 25. Informal Gathering of Memliers and Friends, .f i p.m. 
Feb. 2. J>ecture — Professor Glaister. 

,, 16. Smoking Concert — Mr Joseph Martin. 
Mar. 2. Lecture, "Spiritual Aspects of Sir Walter Scott" — Dr Wallace, 
late Editor GIa\oow Herald. 
,, 16. Smoking Concert — Mr James Ballantyne. 

The Meetings are held in the Club Rooms at S.30 each evening. 


SVLL.VBUS— 1910-11. 
Sept. 15. " Burns's Life and Teaching'" (with songs) — Rev. Jas. Barr, B.D., 

of Govan. 
Oct. 13. "Prince Charlie's War'' (as told in song) — John Wilson, Esq., 

Secretary of National Song Society. 
Nov. 10. " Burns's ' Holy Fair '" — Rev. David Graham, St. Gilbert's Parish 

Church, Pollokshields. 
Dec. I. " Mary Queen of Scots '" (with views) — Chas. W. Thomson, Esq., 
M.A., F.E.LS., Rector of Larkhall Academy. 
Feb. 9. "Tennyson's 'In Memoriam " "' (an appreciation) — Rev. George 

Simpson Vuille, Parish Church, Rutherglen. 
Mar. 4. " The Kailyard — and its Cock-Lairds '' — T. G. Forbes, Esq. 

Syllabus of the Course of 6 Lectures, i/-; Admission to Single Lecture, 6d. 


Instituted iSg^. Federated 18Q4. 

SYLLABUS -1910-1 1. 
Oct. 4. Business Meeting. 

Nov. 8. Musical Evening. Arranged by Mr James Robertson. 
Dec. 13. Joint Meeting with Rosebery Burns Club. " Songs of the Poet," 
with musical illustrations. Lecturer, Rev. Munro Sommerville. 
Jan. 10. Musical Evening. Arranged by Mr Robert Tennant. 
,, 25, Annual Dinner. " Immortal Memory,"" Rev. George Simpson 
Yuille, B.D. 

1 32 

Feb. 14. Joint Meeting with Rosebeiy Burns Club. " The Land ol Burns, 
illuslratecl l>y views and song. Lecturer, Mr J- Taylor Gihb, of 
Maucliline. \ocalist, Mr T. Dickie. 

Mar. 14. .Smoking Ccncert. 

Apr. II. " What makes a man ? " Lecturer, J. Wishart Kerr, M.B., Ch.B. 

May — . Annual Outing. 


Instil tiled n)OS- Federated 1^04. 

SYLLABUS— 1910-1 1. 

Oct. 27. Hallowe'en Supper. 

Nov. 24. Lecture — Mr M'Callum. 

Dec. 22. Christmas Festival and Musical I'^vening. 


Jan. 25. Anniversary Dinner (Sloan's (^afe) — Rev. W. Brownlie, ^LA. 

Feb. 23. Lecture — The Rev. D. Ness. 

Mar. 23. Lecture, " Robert Burns "^Mr J. Shaw Simpson 

Apr. 20. Tattie-and-IIerrin' Supper. 

May — . Annual Outing. 


Instituted iS()g. 
SYLLABUS— 1910-191 1. 

Oct. 10. " A little talk on three kinds of humour — Micawber, Swiveller, 

and Weller " — Geo. M'Ruer, Esq. 
Nov. 14. " Robert Burns and Scottish Theology — Rev. David Graham. 

,, 28. Ladies' Night. Tea, &c. Harmony. 
Dec. 12. Selections. " The message of Tom Hood " (with Readings)— Sam- 
^L Brown, Esq. 

Jany. 9. "Burns'": An appreciation — J. H. Thomson, Esq. 

,, 22. Church Parade. 

,, 25. Burns Anniveksakv. 
Feb. 13. Ladies' Night. Progressive Whist, Music, Dancing. 
Mar. 13. Annual Business Meeting. 



SYLLABUS— Session igio-ii. 

Sept. 20. Lecture, " Fiction as an Educative Force ' —Mr [as. Ballanlyne. 

Oct. 4. Lecture, "Wit and Humour, with reference to some of Burns's 

Writings" — Ex-Bailie Martin. 

,, iS. Lecture, " Some Thous^iits on Astronom)- "" — Mr William Palmer. 
Nov. I. Lecture, " Tlie Poet : His Constituent Parts" — Mr Donald Stalker. 

,, 15. Lecture, "A Model Newspaper"' — Mr J. Jeft'rey Hunter. 

,, 29. Lecture, " Mining " — Mr William Shaw. 
Dec. 13. Lecture, " Science and Morals and ihj Brotherhood of Man '" — Mr 
John Burness (deceased). 

,, 27. Lecture, "The Horse, His Origin and Ancient History" — Mr 

Robert Donarhie. 
Jan. 10. Lecture, Subject will he dtily ai!noim.-M—\\.ii\ . Thos. Cook, M.A. 

,, 25. Burns Anniversary. 
Feb. 14. Lecture, "A Talk on my Trip to India and Japan "' — Councillor 
D. iNL Stevenson. 
,, 28. Musical Evening — Mr Archibald Dickson. 
Mar. 14. Lecture, " Shakespeare's Comedies" — Mr George G. Omand. 
,, 14. Business Meeting. 


InUiliited iSij-j. 
S VLLABU S — 1911. 

Jan. 25. Anniversary Dinner. 

Mar. — . Social. 

,, — . Annual Pic-nic. 

Oct. — . Annual Business Meeting. 


SYLLABUS — 1910-n. 
Sept. 21. Musical Evening — Bailie Hogg. 

Oct. 12. Lecture, " Burns and the Border "' — Mr M'Callum, PoUokshaws. 
,, 28. Hallowe'en — Bailie Hogg. 


Nov. 30. Musical Evening. 

Dec. 21. Lecture, "The Works cf Burns Clul)s'"— Mr J. Jeffrey Hunter, 

Writer, Glasgow. 
Jan. iS. Lecture, " Did Shakespeare write ' Shakespeare ' ?" — Mr J. Paterson, 

Jan. 27. Annual Festival. "The Immortal Memory" — Mr Bennet Miller, 

M.A., Clydehank. 
Feb. 22. Lecture, "The History of Scottish Literature'' — Mr Kaeburn, 

I\Lir. 22. Lecture, "Scottish Lakes" (with Limelight \'iews)— Mr G. J. 

Miller, ProcuratorT^'iscal, Clydebank. 
April 12. Business \ight. 

Meetings are held in Mr Hulcheon's Restaurant, Clydebank. 



Sept. I. Annual Business Meeting. 

,, 15. Harmony — Mr 1'. Delacourt and Party. 
Oct. 6. Lecture, " Robert Ferguson "—Mr M. Hunter. 

,, 20. Harmony— Mr Wm. Paterson and Party. 

,, 29. Hallowe'en Social. 
Nov. 3. Lecture, " A Tour Through the Highlands"— Mr A. Raeburn. 

,, 17. Harmony — Mr J. Brown and Party. 
Dec. I. Lecture, "Nature's Songster, the World's Bard ' — Mr J. E. 

,, 15. Harmony -Mr T. Barcla\- and I'arty. 
Jan. 5. " Oor Ain Cluij \iclu.'' 

,, 28. Annual Supper and Dance. 
Feb. 2. Lecture, " Genius and the School " — Mr John L. Kinloch, M.A. 

,, 16. Harmonv — Mr Wm. Allan and Party. 
Mar. 2. Lecture, " Prince Charlie and the ' 45 ' '" — Mr Wm. Bryson. 

,, 16. Harmony — Mr Wm. Speedie and Party. 
Apr. — . Grand Smoking Concert. 

Place of meeting, Mr T. F. Ross's Cross Restaurant, Clydebank, at 
7.30 prompt. 



SYLLABUS— 1910-11. 






















"Ruskin" — D. Lang. 

" Unknown Songsters " — J. Stewart. 

"Burns — His Soul and Song'"— A. S. M 'Bride. 

"The unspeakable Scot " — J. P. Dickson. 

"J. M. Barrie"— J. Smith. 

" Minor Irish Poets" — A. Laird. 

' R. L. Stevenson " — ]. Douglas. 

' James Thomson '" — G. S. Stevenson. 

'Dunbar — The Pre-Reformation Burns" — Thos. Amos. 





















S p.m 


SYLLABUS— 1910-11. 

Lecture — Rev. Alex. Andrew. 

" Neglected Gems in Scotland's Lyric Crown "—Mr Alex. Pollock. 
Tattie-an'-Herrin' Supper — Members and Friends. 
" Life and Works of Janet Hamilton, the Monkland Poetess"— Mr 
William Birrell. 

Anniversary Dinner. 

" Bonnie Prince Charlie " — Mr James M'llwraith. 

" Fiction as an Educative Force " — Mr James Ballantyne. 

General Meeting and Social. 

meets first Tuesday in each month in the Free Gardeners" Hall at 




A few years ago I was informed thai the Armour's buried in St. Peter's 

Churchyard and Cemetery, Aberdeen, are of the same stock as Burns"s wife. 

Having had occasion to search the burial records of the place, which start 

from I3lh April, 1769, I made it a point to transcribe any entries relating to 

that surname. The search was made to the end of 1909. 

1794 — ^I^y II. — Munca Armour, aged l year, daughter of William, soitldier. 

1830— July 28. — William Armour, aged 70, carpet weaver, Gilcomstone. 

1875 — September 11. — Ann Buyers or Armour, wife of James Armour, shoe- 
maker, Hadden Street, Woodside, aged 75. 

iSSo^uly 6. — James Armour, late shoeniaker, 94 Hadden Street, Woodside, 
aged 76. 

1889— October 19. — Margaret Armour, spinster (from Incurable Hospital, 
Aberdeen), aged 52. 

A headstone is inscribed : 1881 — Erected in loving memory of father and 
mother ; also their daughter Margaret, who died i6th October, 1889, 
aged 52 years. . . . Armour. A sister of Margaret mentioned, 
viz., Isabella Aiken Armour, wife of Alexander Mefif, baker, 
Woodside, died 5th April, 1899, aged 56 years, and is buried in 
another part of the Cemetery. 



" Gifiie ■' is a new name for Providence — Scottish., of course. Perhaps a 
capital " P" would have assisted the Sassenach, who wrote the following, to 
grasp the meaning of the line. We simplify it for his benefit — " O ! wad 
some Power gie us the giftie." — Ediior. 

A Gkrman Staff Officer in India : being impressions of the Travels 
of an Officer of the German General Staff through the Peninsular. 
By Count Hans von K(£nigsmarck, Major in the Dragoons of 
Bredow and Captain on the General Staff of the German Army. 
With thirty-two full-page illustrations from original photographs. 
Roval 8vo. 


IVhen the giftie gies the gift, as apparently he is frequently in the habit of 
doing nowadays, to other people, and especially those of another nationality— 
to show us how we appear to them— it is as a rule by no means flattering to 
our self-conceit, and the giflie has been so profuse in his gifts lately that some 
who are — territorially, at any rate — of ourselves have outgifted the giftie, at any 
rate as far as India and Egypt are concerned. So much has this been the 
case that the average Englishman has almost begun to doubt the infallibility 
and uprightness of his own nation. Against this the voice of the Englishman, 
however well he knows his subject, avails but little. But when a foreigner, 
and a foreigner of a nation whose criticisms on our policy are seldom inclined 
lo leiiiencv, comes on the scene it is a different matter. 

The following entry occurs in our .Matriculation Album for 1767 : — 
'■'■ [acobus M''Lehose filius nalu secundtis quondam Gulielmi Mercatoris Glas- 
i^iiensis." Is this the husband of " Clarinda" ? If we knew for certain the 
Christian name and designation of the father of Clarinda's husband the 
evidence would be tolerably complete. 

W. iNNiis Addison, 

The University, Glasgow. 

1 have had an opportunity of compaiing the signature of James M'Lehose 

in our Matriculation Album of 1767 with two signatures of Clarinda's husband 

in the records of the Faculty of Procurators, and all three are undoubtedly the 

handwriting of the same person. In other words, our alm/inus oi 1767 was 

the husband of Clarinda. 

W. Innes Addison, 

The University, Glasgow. 


In the Evening Times of August loth extracts appeared from Heron's 
/oitrney Through the Wester a Counties of Scotland (Perth, 1793), giving his 
very extraordinary views of the religious and moral state of Glasgow at that 
time. Heron extended his journeys to what is now called "The Land of 
Burns." That was in 1792, four years before the death of Burns. He after- 
wards wrote a " Life of the Poet," which I have not had the good fortune to 
" pick up," and I have seen the statement made that it is the worst biography 
in existence — an almost incredible assertion in the face of dozens upon dozens 


in my possession, including essays and " apprccialiim.s." If, in llial liici^raphy, 
he criticises the poems of Burns — judginj,' from the work before me— I can 
well understand the low estimate of his '"life." For instance, here is a curious 
extract, which that eminent literary body, " The Jolly Beggars " of Mauchiine, 
will read with special interest : — 

" Kennedy, whose Flyting with Dunbir is preserved in Ramsay's Ever- 
green, is not the only poet that Ayrshire has produced. Tiie poems of Robert 
Burns, a native of the parish of Mauchiine, in Kyle, are in every jjersun's 

That was in 1792, llie year of Heron's journey. Heron tlien launciies 
into " criticism," and there is a delicious flavour of patronage in all he writes. 
Heron, the literary hack, on Burns, is worthy of a " leeterary ' anniversary 
oration :-- 

" The poems which brought Mr 15urns into fashion — for a winter -liave 
all conside7-able merit. . . . The poem on the rustic rites and festivity of 
Halioive'en is finely fanciful and most divertingly comic, but, the subject was 

indeed rich in materials for the man of fancy and humour \s a tale 

(' Tam o' Shanter ') it wants, indeed, the inimitable arch simplicity of the tales 
of Fontaine. But it has l^eauties of a higher kind. . . . Burns seems to 
have thought, with Boccace and Prior, that some share of the indelicacy was 
a necessary ingredient in a tale. Pity ihat he should have debased so fme a 
piece by anything having even the remotest relation to obscenity ! " 

Heron appears, to have gone from Mauchiine to " Lugar Braes," and 
launches out in a criticism of James Boswell and his works, curious to read in 
these limes. " If," he writes, " there has been a descent from becoming 
dignity in Mr Boswell's makinghimself the humble follower of Dr Johnson, and 
the historian of all his petty habits, our lively countryman has been sufficiently 
punished by the ridicule which it has drawn upon him ; "' which is interesting 
in the face of realised facts and Carlyle's essay on Boswell. 

Evening Times, September 6ih, 1910. 


Some delay having taken place in the preparation of these blocks, they 
could not be inserted in their proper place, but rather than omit them we give 
them here. No. i shows one of the shafts sunk through the piers ; No. 2, the 
grouting of the cement under pressure ; No. 3, tlie roadway laid bare ; and 
No, 4, a general view of the operations. 


No. 1. 



No. 3. 



The following sketch appeared in the Aberdeen Weekly journal, 1 8th 
May, 1910 :— 

Mrs Alexander Alowat, Ivy Bank, Drumlithie, has lived under six 
Sovereigns. Mrs Mowat, whose maiden name is Catherine Burness, was 
born at Midtown, Barras, 1816, the year following the battle of Waterloo. 
Her Father, James Burness (third cousin of our National Bard), was one 
of the largest farmers in Kincardineshire. A man of considerable prominence 
throughout the county as a valuator, his advice was freely asked by rich and 
poor alike. It had been his custom to pay one guinea to the Crown annually 
for the honour of wearing a wig and knee-breeches, with brass buttons having 
the Crown embossed on them. In these days, very few in the land could pay 
for such honour, and those fortunate persons who were able to do so were 
invited annually to dine with Lord Arbuthnott of Arbuthnott House, an event 
" Old Middy," as he was familiarly called, seldom missed. 

The subject of oui sketch has lived, as stated, under si.x Sovereigns — 
namely, George HI., George IV., William IV., (^ueen Victoria, Edward 
VII., and George V. Of the events still fresh in her memory are the death of 
George IV. in 1830, the ascension of William I\^ to the Throne, and his 
death in 1837. The Coronation of Queen \'ictoria looks like an event of 
yesterday to the old lady, so to speak, and she remembers well Queen 
Victoria's first visit to Balmoral, and the soldiers, when on their march to 
Balmoral, being billeted on the inhabitants of the district, who were com- 
pelled to keep them, or pay for their maintenance elsewhere. ;\Irs Mowat 
also recollects the operations of the press gang, and of her father being called 
upon to lend his services to Queen and country, but eventually he paid the 
tax of £(iO to the Government to be relieved — " A gey sum in thae days," 
remarked the old lady. Mrs Mowat remembers well the messenger being 
sent to Balmoral on horseback to give Queen Victoria the tidings of the fall 
of Sebastopol. One great catastrophe still fresh in her mind was the wreck of 
the Oscar and Williatn in Aberdeen Bay, in which a number of lives were lost. 
The old lady remembers the first policeman being appointed in the county 
town — a man M'Robb, whose forebears tenanted the farm of Ferniebrae. It 
was the custom (as at present) for the policeman to go through the county 
district and get his book signed by the leading farmers. M'Robb, who was 
attired in a uniform consisting of a blue coat and brass buttons, was a terror to 
the country, and the people ran to hide until he had passed. Mrs Mowat, 
who resides with her son, Mr James Mowat, Ivy Bank, has been a widow for 
over 46 years, and is much cared for by her family. Although 94 years of 
age, Mrs Mowat is as fresh and as nimble as many who are only half her 
-age, and attends to the duties of her son's household. 

Robert M'ukdoch-Lawrancic, Aberdeen. 


" rRicic oi' iiiK Skirnim; BiKNS. — As announced in the Glasgow- 
Herald of yesterday, the Skirving drawing of the National IJard has been 
acquired for the Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh. The price 
paid for the drawing, which was in the possession of the executors of the late- 
Sir Theodore Martin, was ^500."— August 24th, 1910. 


Tlie following paragraph was contributed by the writer to the Aberdeen 
Weekly Journal " Notes and (^)ueries "' c(»lumn, 27th April, 1910 : — 

It is agreed by at least two able editors of County Anthology 
that tiie author of the wonderful story of " Thrumniy Cap " was 
born at Bogjorgan, a farm in the parish of Glenbervie, on 23rd 
iSIay, 1771, but the date of his death is erroneously given by a 
well-known local author as having taken place in 1824. Determined to 
probe the matter to the bottom, in order to satisfy myself and other gentlemen 
interested in Burnsiana, I searched the burial records of the Spital Burial 
ground, Aberdeen, and failed to find the name recorded in the year men- 
tioned, but on 17th January, 1S26, I found the entry — "John Burness, 53 
years, baker, Stonehaven," which settles the question lieyond all further 

My friend, Mr Alan Reid, F.S..'\. (Scot.), in his excellent Bards oj 
Angus and A/earns makes, on page 17, the following suggestion, which could 
easily be carried out : — " Might n;>t the Burns Clubs of the counties combine 
to mark the grave of the poetic kinsman of the most distinguished scion of the 
Mearns?" John Burness's burial lair, in the old days, the superintendent of 
the Cemetery informs me, would be 32 '24 — now converted into a walk. But 
a suitable memorial could easily be placed adjacent, and reference made on 
the stone to 1 hat effect. 

Robert MtRnocH-LAWKA-NXE. 


Collectors of Barnsiana and Burnsiies generallv who arc keen to amplify 
their knowledge of the National Poet and of those \\li() live in the shadow of 
his fame, cannot fail to be interested in the note concerning Black Russel, 
which appears in the Stirling Sentinel of Tuesday, .March 8, 1910. When 
the ranting Highland " herd '" (and what herd like Russel tell'd his tale?) 
relinquished his oversight of the "lirutes" in Kilmarnock he was translated 
to Stirling. For many years he was prominent in the affairs of that good old 


town. In addition to his ordinary duties as one of the clergymen of the 
burgh, he discharged the functions of chaplain to the Loyal Stirling \'olunteers, 
and served the community on any special occasion demanding the attention of 
a Preacher of the Word. It is in this last-mentioned connection that he is 
referred to by the author of An Old Slii-ling Diary, an extremely interesting 
record of events that is at present being published by Mr W. B. Cook, into 
whose hands the MS. has come. 

The Diary covers the period from i8oS to 1821. One of the local 
happenings which it chronicles is that of the laying of a foundation stone with 
Masonic honours. This events-doubtless big with importance to .Stirling 
people — came oft" on the 21st of June, 1815, and I find that it is referred to by 
the candid Diarist in these terms : — 

"The foundation stone of a new building with a steeple was laid where 
the Meal Market formerly stood. On this occasion there was a procession. 
The Magistrates and town ofticers walked first ; next came a crowd of Masons 
belonging to diff'erent Lodges, among whom were observed several dissolute 
young men belonging to the town. There were besides a great number of ragga- 
muttins and mean fellows in the procession. The Magistrates and Council 
<lined in Masons' Inn. The .Masons and riff'-raff got a dinner in the Trades 
Hall. The night was spent in riot and drunkenness, as is usual on such occa- 
sions, and John Russel, the minister, instead of consecrating the intended 
building, pronounced a severe philippic against all such ceremonies that are 
used on such occasions." 

The Merry Masons have long been famous for their joviality, and their 
deeds in an age of hard drinking probably deserved the severe strictures of the 
Diarist. There is a touch of bias in his remarks, however. " Masons and 
riff-raff" are coupled, though their conjunction was doubtless wholly due to 
accident. The victim of Burns's satire was quite equal to the task of pro- 
nouncing a severe philippic against Masonic ceremonial — whatever his faults 
may have been. Black Russel certainly did not lack courage — but unless 
there was something very extraordinary in the proceedings the Scriptural 
solemnities of Freemasonry might have been expected to rouse some little 
response of sympathy in the breast of even an ultra-Calvanistic divine. 

VVii.LiA.M Harvey, F.S..V. , Scot., 

in Dundee Advertiser, March 14, 1910. 

.}rOTTO ".-7 .l/./.r.S- .-/ MAY FOK A' THAT: 

The Burns Federation 


Hon. Presidents— The Right Hon. The Eari. ok Rosekkky, K.C;., K.T. 

Andrew Carxi:(;ie, LL.D., Skiho Castle. 
Hon. Fire-Trestdeni's—'WM. Wallace, LL. J)., 42 Altiole Gardens, Glasgow. 
Professor I^AWSON, D.I)., The University, St. Andrews. 
Sir James Sivewrkuit, K.C. M.G., Tulliallan Castle. 

/V^j7c/^///— Duncan M'Nahiht, J.P., Benrig, Kilmnurs. 
Vice-Presidents — Provost M. SiMiTit, Kilmarnock. 

Ex-Provost Wii,soN, Pollokshaws. 

Rev. James Forrest, M.A., S Holland Place, Glasgow. 

James Bai.lantyne, 21 Rose Street, Garnethill, Glasgow. 

Thomas Brown, Maryfield, Low-waters, Hamilton. 

Ex-Bailie Hugh Mayberry, J.P., St. \'incent Street, Glasgow. 

Philip Sulley, F.S.A., Galashiels. 

J. Jeffrey Hunter, 109 Bath Street, Glasgow. 

A. M'Callum, News Office, Pollokshaws. 

Alexander Pollock, 52 West Nile Street, Glasgow. 

Joseph Martin, 163 West George Street, Glasgow. 

Alderman William Burns, Sunderland. 

W. H. Turner, 9 The Oaks, Sunderland. 

]'. Patekson, 23 Bruce Street, Dunfermline. 

Henry Durham, F.C.S., F. Ph.Sc, 13 Colheme Road, S. Kensington, 
London, S.W. 

John Carmichael, 27 Blytheswood Drive, Glasgow. 

Ex-Dean of Guild Stevenson, Falkirk. 

Police-Judge Wm. Munro, J. P., Howard Park Drive, Kilmarnock. 

?>x- Bailie John Ross, Caledonian House, Lanark. 
Hon. Secretary — Thos. Amos, M.A., 19 Glebe Road, Kilmarnock. 
Assistant Secretary— (^v.o. A. Innes, F.E.I.S., Kilmarnock. 
Hon. Treasurer— JoiiEin: Brockie, T. P., Royal Bank, Kilmani.ick. 


Editor "■ Burns Chronicle"— V). M'Naught, J- 1^, Benrig, Kilmanr.s. 
Auditors — Captain D. VuiLLK and Adam Mackay, Kilmarnock. 
Local A'epreseniatii'es — 

London — James Thomson, 85 Fleet Siieet, PIC. 

North of England— W. 11. Turner, Sunderland. 

Glasgow and District — J. Jei-krey Hunter, 109 Bath Street, Glasgow. 


1. The Federation shall consist of an Hon. President, Executive Council, 
and the afliliated mernhers of each Cluh. 

2. The Executive Council shall consist of a President, Vice-Presidents, 
Hon. Secretary, Hon. Treasurer, Editor of Annual Bums Chronicle, and 
two iVuditors — all of whom shall be elected annually and he eligible for 
re-election — also of the President, Vice-President, and Secretary, or any 
other three members of, and nominated by, each affiliated Club, and other 
gentlemen of eminence as Burnsites nominated by the Executive. 

3. All Past Presidents of the P'ederation shall ^,v c^ffic/o be members of 
the Executive Council. 


1. To strengthen and consolidate the bond of fellowship existing 
amongst the members of Burns Clubs and kindred Societies by universal 

2. To superintend the publication of Works relating to Burns. 

3. To acquire a fund for the and preservation of Holograph 
Manuscripts and other Relics cnnnecled with the Life and Works of the 
Poet, and for other purposes of a like nature, as the Executive Council 
may determine. 


1. The Headquarters of the Federation shall be at Kilmarnock, the 
town in which the Federation was inaugurated and carried to a practical issue, 
and which contains the only properly organised Burns Library and Museum 
in the United Kingdom. 

2. Properly organised Burns Clubs, St. Andrew's Societies, and 
kindred Associations may be admitted to the Federation by application in 
writing to the Hon. Secretary, enclosing copy of Constitution and Rules. 

3. Tlie Registration Fee is 21s, on receipt of which the Diploma of 
the Federation shall be issued, after being numbered and signed by the 
President and Hon. Secretary. 

4. Members of every Burns Club or kindred Association registered by 
the Federation shall be entitled to receive a Pocket Diploma on payment 
of Is. ( I'hese Payments are final— not annual. ) 

5. The Funds of the Federation shall be vested in the Executive 
Council for the purposes before-mentioned. 

6. A Meeting of the Executive Council shall be held annually during 
the Summer or Autumn months at such place as may be agreed upon by 
the Office-bearers, when reports cm the year's transactions .shall be submitted 
by the Hon. Secretary and Hon. Treasurer, and Office-bearers elected for 
the ensuinir year. 


■J. A mecliiii; of Uie Otiice-bearers shall lake place .some time before 
the Annual Meeting; of the Kxeculive Council, to make the necessary 
arrangements for the same. 

8. That each Federated Club shall subscribe los 6d per annum towards 
the fund for the publication of the Nums Chronicle. 

9. Notice of any amendment or alteraticm of ilie Constitution or Rules 
of the Federation, to be considered at the Annual Meetini;, must be in 
writing to the lion. Secretary noi later than 31st Maicli 


1. Registered Clubs are supplied free vviili copies of newspapers con- 
taining accounts of meetings, demonstrations, etc., organised, conducted, 
or attended by the Executive Council of the Federation, and of the Annual 
Meeting of the Kilmari^ock Burns Club. 

2. Exchange of fraternal greetings on the anni\crsary of the Poet's 
natal day. 

3. Members of Registered Clubs who have provided themselves with 
pocket diplomas are entitled to attend meetings of all Clubs on the Roll of 
the Federation, they being subject to the rules of the Club visited, but 
having no voice in its management unless admitted a member according to 
local form. 

4. Members are entitled to be supplied through the Secretaries of their 
respective Clubs with copies of all Works published' by the I'^ederation at a 
discount of t,'}^]^ per cent. 


Burns Hoi^ookaph Maxusckipts in the ] 

Museum, with Notes 
Bt'ii.vs Chronkt.k and Ci.i;b Dikeciokv 


A few copies of the back vols, may sill b 
Hon. Secretary. Increased prices are chaiged 

•nock M 


. 1889 


. 1892 

is od 



. 1894 




, 1896 


















J 905 





IS 6d 







191 1 


had on 

application to the 

hen the 

vols, are 

out of 




Burgh Court Room, Lanark, 
^rd Sepiember, igio. 

The Annual Meeting of tlie Executive Council of the Burns Federation was 
held here to-day at 11.45 a.m. 

The following Delegates were present : — 
Mr D. M'Naught, J. P., Editor of the Hums Chronicle. 
Mr Thomas Amos, M.A. , Hon. Secretary. 
Mr George A. Innes, F.E.I.S., Assistant Hon. Secretary. 
Glasgow and District Association of Burns Clubs— Rev. James Forrest, 
M.A., and J. Jeffrey Hunter. 

Falkirk— Dr D. Mitchell and H. B. Watson. 
Sandyford Burns Club— Ex-Bailie Mayberry and James Michie. 
Barns o' Clyde, Clydebank— Lawrence Watt. 

Glasgow Albany Burns Club — James Taylor, Robert Carmichael, and 
Richard Donaldson. 

Glasgow Primrose Burns Club — Thomas ^luir, G. R. Hunter, and 
Robert Gibson. 

Londonderry — Thomas D. Graham. 

Bridgeton Burns Club— Thomas Potter, jun., and David Baird. 
Greenock— William Lees, B.A., and Alexander Ramsay. 
Thornliebank — James Andrew and James Chalmers. 

Jolly Beggars, Kilmarnock — Robert J. Green, Andrew Campbell, and 
Alexander Begg, jun. 

Thistle Burns Club, Glasgow— Richard Bogie, Alexander Liddell, and 
Alexander Allan. 

East Stirlingshire — Alexander Glen, James M'Williams, and Hugh 

Brechin Burns Club— F. C. Anderson and James A. Hutcheon. 
Carlton Burns Club — David Davidson, Robert M'Kenzie, and Wm. J. 

Kinning Park Burns Club — William Crum Ivobertson and Thomas 


llamiliun Junior Hurns Club — Robert Brown and William Wilson. 

Prestwick — Thomas S. Fleming and ex-Bailie Cochrane. 

Karlinnio — Alexander I\Iacka\-. 

Larkhall Burns Club — ^John Rodger, William Nicol, and John Fleming. 

Ayrshire Association of Federated Burns Clubs— Andrew Sinclair, 
William Lennox, and James Queay. 

Bellfield Burns Club— Dan. Picken and James Neilson. 

Begbie's, Kilmarnock— John Douglas. 

Hamilton Mossgicl— Arch. Clark, ju!i., William Maxwell, and William 

Western Burns Club, Parlick--IIugh M 'Coll and James Webster. 

Tam o" Shanter — T. P. Thomson and James Ballantyne. 

Rutherglen Cronies — ^John Robb. 

National Burns Club— Joseph Martin and John Carmichael. 

Glasgow Haggis — David MacFarlane. 

Mossgiel, Glasgow— John W. Black and William Patrick. 

Kilmarnock — Dean of Guild M. Smith and ex-Bailie W. Munro. 

Glasgow Co-operative — Peter Glass. 

Meikle Earnock Original — Alexander Laird and Robert Lees. 

Jolly Beggars, East Calder — George Young and James Robertson. 

Auciiinleck Boswell — Matthew Wallace. 

Winsome Willie, Cumnock — Gilbert M'Kissock and liugh Campbell. 

Lanark —Thomas Lithgow, Wm. Brown, and John Ross. 

Carlisle Burns Club — William Reid. 

Stirling — John Craig. 

Blairadam Shanter — John Ramsay and Thomas Sneddon. 

Stane Mossgiel Burns Club — Alexander Walker and David Cairns. 

Newart Hill Burns Club — George Cook, John W'att, and Tlsomas 
I\I 'Alpine. 

Sunderland — A. W. Semple. 

Fairfield, Govan — Hubert Gray M'Laren. 

The London Robert Burns Club — Neil Turner, C. Wilkinson 
Pimbury, and H, Durham. 

The Dunfermline United Burns Club — T. Paterson. 

Glasgow Rosebery — John A. Biggs, L.D.S., George Armour, and 
Peter Smiih, jun. 

Ricc.irton — John P. Dickson, John Ford, and David Lang. 

Hamilton Mossgiel — Tom Brown. 

^Vpologies for absence were intimated from Mr Adam Mackay, 
Kilmarnock, and from Row and Alexandria Burns Clubs. 

On the motion of Mr Jeffrey Hunter, Mr D. M 'Naught was appointed 


Provost Macleay, on behalf of the Magistrates and Town Council of 
Lanark, extended to the Delegates a very hearty welcome, which the Chair- 
man suitably acknowledged, expressing the great appreciation the Delegates 
had of the kindly welcome and generous hospitality of the Ancient and Royal 
Burgh of Lanark. 

The Hon. Secretary read his Annual Report, in which he referred to the 
principal events of interest to Burns lovers during the past year. He paid a 
just tribute to the memory of the late President, Capt. David Sneddon, one 
of the three founders of the Federation. 

On the motion of the Chairman, it was agreed to record this appreciation 
in the minute book, and the Secretary was requested to send an excerpt to 
Mrs Sneddon. 

On the motion of ex-Bailie Hugh Mayberry, Glasgow, the Secretary was 
thanked for his report. 

In the absence of the Hon. Treasurer (Mr Brockie) the Treasurer's state- 
ment was submitted by Mr G. A. Innes, Kilmarnock. It showed that the 
funds at the credit of the Federation now amount to ^299 i8s gd. On the 
motion of Dean of Guild Smith, Kilmarnock, seconded by ex-Bailie Mayberry, 
the report was unanimously adopted. 

Mr M'Naught agreed to continue the editorship of the Ckroin'c/c for 
another year. At the same time he impressed on the Delegates that at the 
next Annual Meeting an important part of the business would be to consider 
the future of the Chronicle. On the motion of Mr James Ballantyne, Glasgow, 
seconded l)y Mr Craig, Stirling, the Editor was awarded a hearty vote of thanks. 
It was unanimously agreed on tlie mf)tion of Mr Andrew Sinclair, 
Kilmarnock, to continue the grant of ^25 towards the publication of the 
Chronicle, and the existing Chronicle Committee was re-appointed. 

The Rev. James Forrest, M.A., Glasgow, submitted a report on the 
Chair of Scottish History and Literature. From all sources tlie sum of /,"5000 
had been received for the scheme. Of this sum, ;^500 had lieen 
definitely promised or subscribed by Burns Clubs. Apart from this 
sum, a very great deal of the total amount of the fund was owing to the work 
and enthusiasm of Dr Wm. Wallace, ex-President of the Federation. The 
report was adopted, and a vote of thanks given to Mr Forrest. 

The Rev. James Forrest moved that a Committee be appointed to revise 
the Rules and Constitution of the Federation. After some discussion, this 
was agreed to, and the follov,ing Committee was appointed : — Rev. James 
Forrest (convener), Messrs D. M'Naught, T. Amos, G. A. Innes, A. Sinclair, 
Jos. Martin, J. Ballantyne, AIck. Pollock, J. Jeffrey Plunter, Peter Paterson, 
and F. C. Anderson. On the motion of Mr Philip SuUey, Galashiels, 
seconded by tlie Rev. James Forrest, the meeting unanimously and 
enthusiastically appointed Mr D. M'Xaught, J. P., to the ofificp of President. 

Mr JetViey Hunter moved thai Professor Lawson, St. Andrews University, 
along vsiih Sir James Sivewrigiit, K.C.M.G., be appointed Hon. Vice-Presi- 
dents, ar.d that the other office-bearers be re-appointed. 

In addition to the existing Vice-Presidents, the following gentlemen were 
proposed and seconded: Ex-Bailie John Ross, Lanark; ex-Provost Wilson, 
Pollokshaws ; Police Judge W. Manro, J.P., Kilmarnock; Dean of fhiild 
Smith, J. P., Kilmarnock ; and Mr Philip Sulley, F.S.A., Galashiels. Dean 
of Guild Smith moved that il he left to the Executive Committee to go over 
the names of the \'ice- Presidents, and submit a list for approval at next 
meeting. This was agreed to. 

On the motion of the Secretary, Mr James Thomson, President of the 
London Robert Burns Club, No. i, was appointed K.epresentative of the 
Federation in London. 

On the motion of Mr Alex. Pollock, Glasgow, it was agreed that the 
Clubs on the roll of the P>deration should endeavour to promote the study of 
Scottish poetry, songs, and history, by holding competitions among the school 
children in their neighbourhood. Mr Peter Smith, jun., suggested to the 
Committee for the revision of the Constitution and Rules, that provision 
should be made for the representation by proxy of affiliated Clubs across the 

On the motion of ex-Bailie Mayberry, seconded by Dr Wm. Wallace, the 
Chairman was awarded a very hearty vote of thanks. This terminated the 
business meeting. 


The delegates were afterwards entertained to luncheon by the Provost, 
Magistrates, and Town Council of Lanark in the County Hall. 

Provost Macleay presided, and was supported by the office-bearers of the 
Federation ; while Bailie Lamb discharged the duties of croupier. After an 
■excellent repast a short toast-list was submitted. The company was after- 
wards photographed outside of the County Hall. 

The delegates then left Lanark for a drive of eighteen miles through the 
charming scenery for which Upper Clydesdale is so franed. In the course of 
the excursion Stonebyres Falls were visited, and at Mauldslie Castle they were 
■welcomed by Lord Newlands. The local arrangements were admirably 
carried out under the guidance of ex- Bailie Ross, Secretary of the Lanark 
Burns Club. 

The local Burns Club, under the genial chairmanship of Mr Thomas 
Lithgow, entertained the delegates, who arrived on Friday evening, at a most 
enjoyable smoking concert, which was enlivened by a perfect galaxy of talent. 

T^O^LAS AMOS, Hon. Secv. 


List of Clubs which haue subscribed for the Publishing Fund 
from 1st Sept., 1909, to 1st Sept., 1910. 





Greenock Cronies 




Glasgow Mossgiel... 




Prestwick ... 




Liverpool ... 












Old Kilpatrick 




Glasgow Tam o" Shanter.. 








,, Sandvford 








Larkhall Thistle .. 




East Stirlingshire 








Walker-on-Tyne ... 




Darnconner Airds Moss 




Paisley Charleston 




Partick Western 




Barlinnie, Glasgow 




Stane Mossgiel 












Glasgow Albany 




Meikle Earnock Original.. 








Blairadam Shanter 




,, (arrears) .. 








Glasgow Thistle ... 
















Glasgow Carlton ... 








Cowdenbeath Haggis 
















Glasgow Rosebery 




Rutherglen Cronies 




Bristol Caledonian Society 




Edinburgh Ninety 




Edinburgh ... 




Cowdenbeith Glencairn 












Nottingham Scottish Asso 

Kilmarnock Jolly Beggars 












Dairy, Ayrshire 




Greenock ... 




St. Andrews 




Blackburn on Almond 








Vale of Leven Glencairn.. 
















East Calder and Dislrici.. 








Glasgow and District A.sso 


elation of Burns Clubs.. 






5S at 10/6 
2 at 10/- 




I o 

30 9 o 

I o o 

o 10 6 



List of Clubs which haue subscribed for the Publishing Fund 
from 1st Sept., WW. 

Darlington Burns Associa- 

' Blackburn 




tion (arrears) 





... O 








... O 



Glasgow Tam o' Shanter... 



Cowdenbeath Glencaim 








Meikle Earnock Original. 

.. o 







Blairadam Shanter 

... o 



Hamilton Mossgiel 





.. o 



Glasgow Albany ... 





• o 







,, (arrears) .. 

.. o 








.. o 








.. o 



Stane Mossgiel 




Paisley Charleston 

.. o 



Londonderry Burns Cluli 



.. o 



and Caledonian Society 



6 ! 

Glasgow District Associa- 

Glasgow Mossgiel 




tion of Burns Clubs 

.. o 



Baillieston Caledonian ... 





. o 






6 ' 

Rutherglen Cronies 

.. o 



Larkhall Thistle 




I'artick Western ... 




Glasgow Thistle ... 



6 1 

(ireenock .. 

.. o 



East" Calder and District 

Old Kilpatrick 

.. o 



Jolly Beggars ... 




St. .-\ndrews 

.. o 







.Musselburgh Federated . 

.. o 



Aberdeen ... 



6 i 

Edinburgh Ninety 




\'ale of Leven Glencaim... 



6 i 

Glasgow Carlton ... 

.. o 



Kilmarnock [oily Beggars 




,, Sandy ford 

.. o 



Newcastle and Tynesiile ... 




,, Mauchline Society o 



Prestwick ... 



















Alphabetical List of Federated Clubs. 

No. 40. 


No. 86. 

Cumnock— The Winsome 











Dai 11 V 


Airdiie — Galeside 















Ardrossaii Casile 












Ayrshire Associaiion 


Dumfries — Mechanics 


Baillieston Caledonia 

















Dunoon — Cowal 




Dunfermline —United 




Duns— Working Men 


Blackburn-cjn- Almond 


Duntocher— Heron 


Blairadam Shanter 






East Calder 


Bolton Juniors 






Edinburgh — South 




Edinburgh— Ninety 




East Stirlingshire 










Broxburn— Rosehery 














Gateshead and District 




Glasgow— Tarn 0' Shanter 



! 7- 



Carlisle— Border 




Carstairs junction 




Chattanooga, U.S.A. 


,, Springburn 



1 ^•5- 




! 34- 





, . Rosebery 


Cleveland Scottish Association 


,, Tolly Beggars 




St. David's 


Clydebank Barns 0" Clyde 


,, Dennistoun 


Coalburn — Rosebery 


,, Northern 




St. Rollox 


Cowdenbeath— Haggis 


,, Bridgeton 


Cowdenbeath -Glencairn 


,, Glencairn 








,, Carlton 




, , Sandyford 


o. 70. Glasgow — St. RoUox Jolly 

1 No. 194. Middlebie 


1 8. Morpeth (dormant) 

74. ,, Miuchline Soc. 

\ loi. Motherwell 

78. ,, Ardgowan 

56. Muirkirk — Lapraik 

83. ,, Co-operative 

' 65. Musselburgh 

88. . , Caledonian 

32. Newark 

107. ,, liutchesontown 

133 Newarlhill 

lOQ. ,, Caledonia 

j 156. Newcastle and Tyneside 

117. ,, Southern 

131. Nottingham 

118. ,, Albany 

17. ,, (dormant) 

139. ,, National 

I SI. Old Kilpatrick 

I4S- ,, Central 

172. Oregon, U.S.A. 

153. ., The Scottish 

48. Paisley 

129. ,. Gorbals 

77. ,, Gleniffer 

164. ,, Kinning Park 

161. ,, Charleston 

180. ,, Tollcross 

72. Partick 

181. ,, I'rimrose 

135. „ Western 

169. Glasgow and District 

26. Penh 

59. Gourock— Jolly Beggars 

54. ,, St. Johnstone 

53. Govan—Fairfield 

162. Plymouth'and District 

116. Greenloaning 

140. Pollokshaws 

21. Greenock 

190. Port-Glasgow 

148. ,, Cronies 

177. Prestwick 

152. Hamilton 

176. Renfrew 

100. ,, Mossgiel 

191. Renfrew Moorpark 

121. ,, Junior 

132. Riccarton— Kirkstyle 

136. ,, Royal Oak 

168. Riccarton 

137. Ipswich 

130. Row 

173. Irvine 

105. Rutherglen 

96. Jedburgh 

193. Rutherglen Jolly Beggars 

154. Johannesburg, S..\. 

31. San Francisco 

92. Kilbowie 

91. Shettleston 

0. Kilmarnock 

195. Sliiremoor 

97. ,, Bellfield 

13. St. Andrews 

150. ,, Jolly Beggars 

182. Stane Mossgiel 

178. ,, "Begbie's 

50. Stirling 

186. ,, Glencairn 

141. Stonehouse 

115. Kippen 

147. „ Haggis 

58. Kirkcaldy 

89. Sunderland 

75. Kirn 

16. Sydney 

98. Lanark 

57. Thornliebank 

144. Larbert and Steiiliousemuir 

94. Uphall 

170. Larkhall 

113. Vale of Leven— Glencairn 

73. Lenzie 

159. Walker-on-Tyne 

18. Liverpool 

165. Wallsend-on-T)ne 

I . London 

46. Warwickshire 

183. Londonderry 

160. Whitburn 

28. Mauchline— The Jolly j 

25. Winnipeg 


60. Wolverhampton 

173. Meikle Earnock ) 





3— KILMARNOCK Burns Club. Instituted iSo8. Federated 1885, 
Place and date of meeting, George Ilotel, 25th January. Presi 
dent, Neil D. M'Michael, B.L., John Finnic Street; Vice 
president. Police Judge Munro, J. P., Howard Park Drive 
Secretary, Thomas Amos, M.A., 19 Glebe Road, Kilmarnock 
Committee — D. M 'Naught, J. P. ; Joseph Brockie, J. P. 
Provost Smith, J. P. ; Geo. A. Innes, F.E.I.S. ; Captain D 
Yuille ; James Middleton, J. P. ; Wm. M'Menan, B.A. ; ex 
Bailie M. Robertson, J. P. ; Wm. Heron, Robert Wylie, and 
ex-Bailie Kerr, B. L. 

—The LONDON Robert Burns Club. Instituted 1868. Federated 
1885. President, Neil Turner, Daily Chronicle, Salisbury Square, 
E.C. ; Vice-president, G. St. John M'Donald, 2 Middle Temple 
Lane, E.C. ; Secietary, James Thomson, Byron House, 85 Fleet 
Street, E.C. Committee — Arthur R. Molison, T. Ernest Price, H. 
D. Faith, Stewart Stockman, T. W. Jacobs, jr., R. A. Walker, W. 
A. Herbert, jr., W. S. Birch. M. D. Kerr, A. T. Bromfield,L A. W. 
Dollar, M.R.C.V.S., F.R.S.E. ; Henry Rose, Leonard Elking- 
ton, A. R.I. B.A. ; J. W. Patterson, William Salmon. Assembly 
M.C.'s~R. A. Walker and A. T. Bromficld. Honorary Auditors 
— Alexander Neill and A. E. Jarvis. Honorary Pipers — Pipe- 
Major Reith, George Shand, and James Cowie. 

!— ALEXANDRIA Burns Club. Instituted 1884. Federated 1885. 
Place and date of meeting. Village School, 7.30, first Friday of 
each month. President, Wm. Livsey, 20 Leven Bank Terrace, 
Jamestown ; Vice-president, Matthew Campbell, 20 Susannah 
Street, Alexandria ; Treasurer, James Mirrilees, Charleston House, 
Alexandria ; Secretary, Duncan Carswell, Linnbrane Terrace, 
Alexandria. Committee — Richard Thom.son, James M'Kenzie, 
Donald M'Dougall, W. M'Gregor, Toseph Irvine, and Gavin 

;— GLASGOW Tam o' Shanter Club. Instituted 18S0. Federated 
1885. Place and date of meeting. Trades' House Restaurant, 89 
Glassford Street, last Tuesday of October, November, February, 
and March. President, John Carmichael, 27 Blythswood Drive, 
Glasgow ; Vice-president, Wm. Warden, 10 Mount Stewart 
Street, Shavvlands, Glasgow ; Secretary, J. Jeffrey Hunter, v\riter. 
109 Bath Street. Glasgow. Committee — Messrs H. J. Altman, 
Jas. Ballantine, Geo. Fisher, Alex. Izatt, Alex. M'Kerzio. Tns, 


Ritchie, Jolin Sniitb. T. P. Thompson, 1). M. Threshie, j. A. K. 
VValson, Edward Wilson, and l)i j. M'Lachhm. Special features 
of Club — Literary evenings and usehd movements for the pro- 
motion of the Burns cult. 

No. 4— CALLANDER Burns Club. Instituted 1S77. Federated 1SS5. 
Scciefary, James S. Anderson, Callander. 

No. 5 -FRCILDOUNE Burns Club. Instituted 18S5. Federated 26th 
November, 1SS5. I'lace of meeting, Red Lion Hotel. Presi- 
dent, Adam N. Tolmie, Marion House, Earlston ; \'ice-presidents, 
G. B. Miles, High Street ; A. A. Burt, M. A., Williambank, 
Earlston ; Sea-etary, Arch. M. Black, Market Place, Earlston. 
Special features of Club — Celebration of Poet's birthday, and trip 
to places of interest, lectures, -^cc. 

No. 6— ALLOA Burns Club. Instituted 1873. Federated 1S85. Secretary, R. 
Tait Melville, 44 Mill Street, Alloa. 

No. 7— THISTLE Burns Club. Instituted 1882. Federated 1885. Presi- 
dent, \Vni. Wingate, 10 Oswald Street, Glasgow ; Vice-president, 
Neil Toye, 132 North Street, Gla.sgow ; Secretary, D. R. Mont- 
gomery, 122 Sou;h Portland .Street, Glasgow ; Treasurer, Jno. 
Eadie, 12 Bridge Street, S.S. , Glasgow. 

No. 8— MORPETH and District Burns Club (dormant). Last Secretary, 
John Dobson, Oldgate Street, Morpeth. 

No. 9— GLASGOW Royalty Burns Club. InMJtuted 1S82. Federated 
1886. Secretary, Wni. C. Rodger, 44 lialh Street, Glasgow. 

No. 10— DUMBARTON Burn.s Club. Instituted 1859 Federated i886. 
Place and date of meeting, Elephant Hotel, 25th January, 191 1. 
President, James Nimmo, Barloiin Crescent, Dumbarton ; Vice- 
president, Walter Scott. Ivy Bank, Dumbarton ; Secretary, Wm. 
Baird, Union Bank House, Dumbarton. Committee — Provost 
M'Farlan, Major David Cockburn, Dean of Guild Wilson. John 
Macpherson, Robert M 'Murray, Jolin M'Clelland, and Charles 
MacKinniin. .Special features of Club — Celebration of the Poet's 

No. II— CHESTERFIELD Burns Society. Federated 1886. Secretary, 
Geo. E. Drennan. 77 Salter Gate, Chesterfield, FJerbyshire. 

N. . 12— BAREOW-IN-FURNESS Burns Club (dormant). Instituted 18S6. 
Federated 1886. Last Seoetary, .\lcx. M'Nauglil, 4 Ramsden 
.Sq uare, Barrow-in-Eurness. 

No. 13— ST. ANDREWS Bums Club. Instituted 1869. Federated 1886. 
Date of meeting, 25th January, 1911. I're.sidenl, Rev. A. D. 
Sloan, M.A., li.Sc, 1 Howard Place, St. Andrews; Vice-presi- 
dent, I-;. E. Morrison, IJonnyioun, St. Andrews ; Secretary, W. 
Macbeth Robertson, solicitor, St. Andrews. Committee — T. E. 
fohnston, A. Bennett, Dr Orr, Charles Freeman, Wm. Duncan, 
"W. G. M. Brown, M. B. Wilson, and Andrew Rolls. 

N... 14— DUNDP:E Burns Club Instituted i860. Federated 5th March, 
1S86. Place and date of meeting, 36 Nethergate, first Wednesday 
of month after first Monday. Hon. President, J. Martin While, 
Esq., Balruddery ; Hon. Librarian, 1). Mitchell ; President, John 


A. Purvis, 36 Nethergate ; Vice-president, Frank Ogg, 36 Nether- 
gate ; Secretary, Percy Allison Morris, 36 Nethergate ; Treasurer, 
D. R. Roberts. Special features of Club — Literary and musical 
evenings ; library of valuable editions. 

No. 15— BELFAST Burns Club. Instituted 1872. Federated 1S86. 
Secretary, Barclay M'Conkey, Belfast. 

No. 16— SYDNEY Burns Club (N.S.W.). Instituted 1880. Federated 1 886. 
Secretary, W. Telfer, School of Arts, Pitt Street, Sydney. 

No. 17- NOTTINGHAM Scottish Society (dormant). Federated 1886. 

No. i8~LIVERP00L Burns Club. Instituted 1866. Federated 1886. 
Place and date of meeting, Hotel St. George, Lime Street, Liver- 
pool, 25th January. Vice-president, Colonel Richard Bulman, 
V.D., Mersey Chambers, Liverpool ; Chairman of committee, 
Alex. Smith, Esq., 104 Salisbury Road, Wavertree, Liverpool ; 
Secretary, Major Robert Sinclair Archer, V.D., Clifton House, 
Clifton Road, Birkenhead ; Chairman for 1911 dinner, Robert 
Hield, Esq., Editor Liverpool Courier. Special features of Club — 
Annual dinner on 25th January and winter lectures. 

No. 19— AUCKLAND Burns Club. Instituted 1884. P^ederated 1886. 
Secretary, John Horn, Wellington Street, Auckland, New 

No. 20— AIRDRIE Burns Club. Instituted 1885. Federated 1886. 
Place and date of meeting. Royal Hotel, Airdrie, 25th January. 
President, Wm. M'C^regor, Ardcoille, Airdrie ; Vice-president, 
Cuthbert R. Larkman, Albert Schoolhouse, Airdrie ; Secretary ana 
Treasurer, Gavin B. Motherwell, jun., sohcitor, 4 East High Street, 
Airdrie. Committee — Walter Cochrane, Wm. Anderson, John B. 
Allan, James Ramsay, Robert Sutter. 

No. 21— GREENOCK Burns Club. Instituted 1802. Federated 1886. 
Place of meeting, Club Rooms, Nicolson Street. President, Mr 
Alex. Lanibie, Ravenshall, Bogslon ; Vice-presidents, J. Fraser, 
Paton, Home Cottage, and Hugh Macintosh, 42 Campbell Street ; 
Joint Secretaries — George Dunlop, 27 Ardgowan Street, and James 
Hannah, 99 Dempster Street. Special features of Club — Cluli 
rooms are open to members at any time ; keys with Curator on 
premises, 36 Nicolson Street. Library has valuable collections of 
editions of Burns, Fergusson, Gait, etc., and the walls are covered 
with signed portraits, including those of some of the most dis- 
tinguished men in the country, who are honorary members of the 
Club. The Club makes a special feature of inter-visitation meet- 
ings with Burns Clubs in the West of Scotland, also of ladies' 
nights. Visitors are always welcome to attend Club meetings. 
The Greenock Club is the oldest Burns Club in the world. 

No. 22— EDINBURGH Burns Club. Instituted 1848. Federated 1886. 
President, Thomas Carmichael, S.S.C., 10 Duke Street, Edin- 
burgh ; Vice-president J. M'Intyre Henry, F.R.I. B. A., 7 S. 
Charlotte Street, Edinburgh ; Secretary, Robert Duncan, 32 
Netherby Road, Trinity, Edinburgh ; Treasurer, Kenneth 
Henderson, C.A., 8 York Buildings, Edinburgh. 

No. 23— ADELAIDE South Australian Caledonian Society. Instituted 
1881. Federated 1886. Secretary, II. Tassie, Gay's Arcade, 
Adelaide, South Australia. 


No. 24— GLASGOW Bank Burns Club (dnrmanl). Instiluled 1S84. 
Federated 1886. 

No. 25— WINNIPEG Si. Andrew'.s Sociely. Federated 18S6. Sccie/aiy, 
David Philip, Government Buildings, Winnipeg. 

No. 26 -PERTH Burns Club. Instiluled 187.5. I-'cdcraled 1886. Seiic'tary, 
John Harper, 68 St. John Street, I'enb. 

No. 27— GLASGOW Springburn Burns Club. Instituted 18S4. Federated 
1886. Sccittary, Cameron Henderson, Syriam Terrace, Spring- 
burn, Glasgow. 

No. 28— MAUCHLINE Jolly Beggars Burns Club. 

No. 29— BOLTON Burns Club. Instituted 1881. Federated 1 886. S,-Liehiry, 
Harry George, 32 Ilalstead Street, The Harregh, Bolton. 

No. 30 BLACKBURN Burns Club. Instituted 1884. Federated 9th July, 
1886. Place of meeting. Victoria Hotel, Cort .Street, Blackburn, 
Lanes. President, Dr .\. Reid, Mayfield, 126 Accrington Road, 
Blackburn, Lanes. ; \'ice-president, J. C. Sharpies, 21 Queen's 
Park Road, Blackburn ; Secretary and Ireasitrer, Robert 
Ferguson, 9 Tacketts Street, Blackburn, Lanes. ; Auditors, J. 
Rutherford and W. Maxwell. Committee — T. Anderson, Wm. 
Ferguson, T. Ferguson, J. Forbes, S. Leigh, J. Little, J. M'Vittie, 
J. Smith, W. Wallbank, F. Wilkinson, and Prank S Jaidine. 
Special features of Club — (i) To commemorate the birthday of 
Burns ; (2) to encourage llie study of Burns and of the other 
Scottish Poets, and of literature generally. 

No. 31— SAN FRANCISCO Scottish Thistle Club. Instituted 1882. 
Federated 18S6. Secretary, Geo. W. I'alerson, 801 Guerero 
Street, San Francisco, U.S.A. 

No. 32— NEWARK Burns Club. Federated 1886. Secretary, John Hogg, 
Caledonian Club, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.A. 

^'"- 33— GLASGOW Haggis Burns Club. Instituted 1872. Federated 1886. 
Place of meeting, National Burns Club, Ltd., 93 Douglas Street. 
President, Major J. R. Metcalfe, J.P , 140 London Street ; Secre- 
tary, William .S. Baird, writer, 185 St. Vincent Street, Glasgow. 

No. 34-CARRICK Burns Club. Instituted 1859, Federated 1887. 
I'lace and date of meeting, 62 Glassford Street, Glasgow, last 
Tuesday of each month at 7 30. President, Robert Thorley, 30 
Aberfeldy Street, Dennistoun, Glasgow ; Vice-president, lames 
Welsh, 46 Dixon Road, Crossbill, Glasgow ; Secretary, Matthew 
Ferguson, 412 Parliamentary Road, Glasgow ; Treasurer, William 
Morrison, 62 Glassford Street, Glasgow. Special feature of Club 
— Study of Burns and kindred literature. 

No. 35— 1).\LRV Burns Club. Instituted 1S26. Federated 1887. Place 
and dale of meeting. Turf Inn, Courlhill. Dairy, evening of Friday 
nearest birthday. President, .Andrew Aitken, J.P. , One Ash, 
Dairy ; Secretary, David Johnstone, Tinlagel, Dairy ; Treasurer, 
Patrick Comrie, factor. Waterside, Dairy. Special features of 
Club — This Club has met annually since 1826 in the same place, 
and the minutes are complete for the whole period. 


No. 36-ROSKBERV Bums Clul). Instituted 1884. Federated 1887. 
Place and date of meetinir, Alexandra Hotel, .Glasgow, Tuesdays 
at 8 p.m. ['resident, Hugh Paton, T-P-, Rowallan, West Kilbride; 
Vice-president, James Murray, 28 Bellgrove Street, Glasgow ; 
Sr'creimy, A. G. Andrew, 59 Ilutclieson Street, Glasgow. Com- 
mittee — Messrs Armour, J. A. Biggs, .Scott, Shakleton, Brown, 
Colquhoun. Ferguson, Twycross, Kelso, M'Kinlay, and J. Thomson. 
Special features of Club — Competitions in Band of Hoj-ie and 
Schools, singing and reading Scottish songs and poems. 

No. 37— DOLLAR Burns Club. Insliluted 14th January, 1S87. Federated 
29th December. 1887. Place of meeting. Castle Campbell Hotel. 
President, ex-Bailie Waddell, Dollar; Vice-president, Dr Butcharl. 
Institution Place, Dollar ; Secretary, William Vounger, Chapel 
Place, Dollar ; Treasurer, John Halley, Eastbourne, Dollar. 
Special feaUres of Club — To foster the memory of Robert Burns. 

No. 38- GLASGOW Tolly Beggars Burns Club (dormant). Instituted 1887. 
Federated 1888 

No. 39— GLASGOW St. David's Burns Club (dormant). Instituted 1887. 
Federated 1889. 

No. 40— ABERDEEN Burns Club. Insliluted 1S87, Federated 1889. 
Resuscitated 1910. Place and date of meeting, Balmoral Temper- 
ance Hotel, first meeting, December gib, 7.45 p.m., others as 
arranged. President, William P"errans. 207 Clifion Road ; Vice- 
president, lames Donald, 10 Justice Mill Lane; Seoe/ary, T. 
M'Laren Lind.say, 2 Dee Place. Committee — Messrs Thomson, 
Ironside, R. Ferraris, W. Donald, Ewen, and Philip. Auditor, 
R. Stuart M'Kay. Special features of Club — Literary and musical 
evenings held once a moith during winter ; essays on Burns's 
works, etc. ; recitations and songs of Burns. Visitors always 
welcome : Secretary will exchange essays (returnable) with anv 
affiliated Club. 

No. 41— DENNISTOUN Bum.s Club (doimanl). In.stiiuted 1887. Fede- 
rated 1889. Last Seartary, Jnjm B. .M', 300 Duke Street, 

No. 42— CRIEFF Burns Club. Instituted 1889. Federated 1891. Secre- 
tary, Wm. Pickaid, Meadow Place. Crieff. 

No. 43— GLASGOW Northern Burns Club (dormant). Federated 1891. 
Last Secretary, James Weir, 216 New City Road, Glasgow. 

No. 44— FORFAR Burns Club (dormanl). Instituted 1890. Federated 1891. 

No. 45— CUMNOCK Pn-.rrs Club. Instituted 1SS7. Federated 1891. 
Secretary, H. R M'Culley, Hazlebank, Old Cumnock. 

No. 46— WARWICKSHIRE Burns Club. Instituted 1880. Federated 
1891. Secretary, Robert Greenfield, F.K.IT.S., Ranelegh 
Nursery, Leamington. 

No. 47 — GLASGOW St. Rollox Burns Club (dormant). Instituted 1889. 
Federated 1891. 

No. 48— PAISLEY Burns Club. Instituted 1805. Federated 1891. Place 
and date of meeting, Globe Hotel, Paisley, first Thursday of each 


iiiuiul). Inini Oiiulicr till M;iv inclusive. President, John M. 
L;in!4. M A., LI,. 15., Kndlicid, Meikleriggs, Paisley"; Vice- 
president, josluKi Ferguson, M.l)., Orr Square, Paisley ; Secretary, 
Cjeorye II. Cockburn, F.E.I.S., Si. Ives, Whilehaugh, Paisley. 

No. 49— t;LASGO\V Bridgclon Burns Cluli. Instituted 1S70. I<"ederated 
1891. President, Thomas Potter, jr., 41 Cumberland Street, 
Calton, Glasgow ; Vice-president, David Baird, 10 Stonelaw 
Terrace, Rulherglen ; Secretary, William Cochran, solicitor, 190 
West George Street, Glasgow ; Assistant Secretary, J. Tullis 
Cochran, solicitor, 190 West George Street, Gla.'^gow ; Treasurer, 
William Rcid, 69 St. Vincent Street, Glasgow. Directors — Peter 
White, Andrew Hoy, I). L. Stevenson," William Baird, J. M. 
Campbell, CK-Bailie Wm. Nicol, J-P.. G. II. Laird, Dr R. Wilson, 
and R. Miller. Special features of Club — Children's competition, 
school class literary competition, boys and girls singing competi- 
tions, school choir competition. 

Xo. 50— STIRLING Burns Club. Instituted icSSj. Federated 1 89 1. Place 
and date of meeting. Golden Lion Ilcjtel, January 25th. President, 
Bailie Ridley Sandeman, 22 Forth Crescent, Stirling ; Secretary, 
Alexander Dun, 37 Murray Place, Stirling ; Treasurer, J. S. 
Henderson, solicitor, Stirling. Committee — Messrs John Craig, 
J. C. Muirhead, Ronald Walker, J. F. Oswald, W. A. Weir, 
Peter Hunter, Councillor Menzies, Alex. Love, Win. Cunningham, 
1. W. Paterson, J. Crawford, f. A. Gordon, Councillor M'Culloch, 
and T. L. Reid. 

Nc. 31- CHICAGO Caledonian Society. Federated 1892. Secretary, 
Charles T. Spence, 3002 Wabash Avenup, Chicago. 

No 52— DUMFRIES Mechanics' Burns Club. Federated 1892. Secretary, 
James Anderson, 55 St. Michael Street, Dumfries. 

No. 53— GOVAN Fairfield Burns Club. Instituted 25th January, 1886. 
Federated 23rd September, 1892. Place and date of meeting, 
4 Holm Street, first Wednesday of months September to March. 
Hon. President, ex-Bailie Hugh Lymburn ; Hon. Vice-president, 
Thomas Black ; President, Thomas Fullarton, 917 Govan Road, 
Govan ; Vice-president, Hugh IVTarr, 37 White Street, Govan ; 
Secreiaiy, Charles Maltman, 16 M'Kechnie Street, Govan. Com- 
mittee — James Wands and Donald M'Callum. 

No. 54— PERTH St. Johnstone Burns Club. Federated 1892. 

No. 55- DERBV Burns Club. Federated 1892. Place and date of meeting, 
Royal Hotel, 9 p.m.. Friday. President. Councillor G. Innes ; 
Vice-presidents, J. \}. Seaton, 33 Renals Street, Derby, and J. 
Peacock, Tresilian, Duffield Road, Derby ; Secretary, C. D. 
Shand, Glencairn, Leopold Street, Derby. Special features of 
Club^Tf) unite Scotsmen and to foster a spirit of friend.ship, and 
to perpetuate the memory of the Immortal Bard. 

No. 56— LAPRAIK (Muirkirk) Burns Club. Instituted 1893. Federated 
1893. Place of meeting, Eglinton Arms Hotel. President, Jas. 
Clark, J. P., Crossfiatt, Muirkirk ; Vice-president, Thos. Weir, 
X'ictoria Buildings, Main Street, Muirkirk ; Secietary, Hugh 
Bell, Roslyn, Wellwood Street, Muirkirk ; Treasurer, Andrew 
Pringle, Linkieliurn Cottage, S.S., Muirkirk. Committee — R. 
Bell, II. Cameron, E. Anderson, J. Taylor, Geo. Morrison. 
Special features of the Club — Anniversary of Burns. 


No. 57— THORNLIEBANK Burns Club. Instituted 25th January, 1891. 
Federated 1893. Place and date of meeting, Club Room, 
occasional and anniversaries. President, Jumes Andrew, 10 
Maxwell Terrace, Thornliebank ; Secretary, William B. Dalzell, 
Speirsbridi^e, Thornliebank ; Treasurer, James C. Scobie. Com- 
mittee — 15 members. Special features of the Club— School 
children's competition, Scotch concert, annual ouiing, and Club 

No. 58 — KIRKCALDY Burns Club. Federated 1892. Secre/aij, ]nhn A. 
.Miller, 13 Quality Street, Kirkcaldy. 

No. 59— GOUROCK Jolly Beggars Burns Club. Instituted 1893. Fede- 
rated 1893. Place of meeting. Gamble Institute, Gourock. 
President, John M. Adam, Cove Point House, Cove Road, 
Gourock ; Vice-president, Edward Geddes, Waterloo House, 
Cove Road, Gourock : Secretary, Robert M'Gechan, 2 Torridon 
Terrace, 19 Cardwell Road Gourock. Special features of Club — 
Club meetings, annual outing, and encouragement of Scottish 

No. 60— WOLVERHAMPTON Bums Club. Federated 1893. Secretary, 
C. G. Webster, Lichfield Street, Wolverhampton. 

No. 61- GLASGOW Glencairn Burns Club (dormant). Federated 1893. 

No. 62— CUPAR Burns Club. Instituted 1893. Federated 1893. H^^i- 
President, H. T. Anstruther : President. Major W. Anstruther- 
Gray, .\1.P.. of Kilmmy ; Vice-uresident, the "Rev. J. H. Leckie ; 
Secretary, David F. Esplin, Diiuace tow icr Office, Cupar-Fife; 
Treasurer, George While, County Buildings : Chairman of 
Committee, George Innes. 

No. 63— MOSSGIEL Burns Club. Instituted 1893. Federated 1893. 
Place and date of meeting, 45 South Portland Street, Glasgow, 
first Tuesday of each month, November till April, at 8 p.m. 
I'resident, John W. Black, 18 Catlicart Road, Glasgow ; Vice- 
president, William Patrick, 150 Cumberland Street, .S.S., Glasgow ; 
Secretary, Robert Parker, 5 Barrland Street, Glasgow ; Interim 
Treasurer, Wm. Thomson, 186 Cumberland Street ; and seven 
members of Committee. Special features of Club — Annual 
celebration of the birthday of Robert Burns, occasional re-unions 
for the cultivation of social and intellectual intercourse amongst the 
members and friends, the encouragement of Scottish literature, and 
to have a sunnner trip to some of the places dear to tlie lovers 
of the Poet. 

No. 64— BEITH Burns Club. Federated 12th iJecember, 1893. Secretary, 
Neil M 'Innes, (irahamsfield Place, Beith. 

No. 65— MUSSELBURGH Federated Burns Club. Instituted 1886 Fed- 
erated 1894. J'lace and date of meeting. Central Rooms, 25th 
January, 1911, at 7.30 p.m. President, B ulie Will Constable, 
84 Inveresk Road, Musselburgh ; Vice-President, A. W. Millar, 
2 Beulah, Musselburgh ; Hon. Secretary, Andrew B. Hall, 6 
Albert Terrace, Musselburgh ; Hon. Treasurer, Wm. Paterson, 
33 Eskside, Musselburgh. Committee — W. B. Gardiner, Alex. 
Lauder, Jno. Gordon, B. .M Nerval, W. Gowan, W. i\. Dudgeon, 
James Thom, George Bain, Peter M'Ewan. Bard, J. E. Brooks. 
Special features of the Club— Competitions for school children. 
Membership about 180. 

No. 66 CROSSGATES Burns Club. Federated 1S94. Secretary, Robert 
Dall, Addison's TUiildings, Crossgates. 

No. 67— CARLTON Burns Club. In.stiluled 1894. Federaled r894. Place 
and date of meeting, .Arcade Cafe, Glasgow, 8 p.m., October to 
Aiiril. President, Robert M'Kenzie, Reformer Office, Ruther- 
glen ; Vice-president, David M. Duff, 31 Abbolsford Place, Glas- 
gow ; Secretary, Win. I. Straiton, 26 .\berdour Street, Glasgow ; 
Treasurer, Donald M'Neil, 21 University .Street. Gla.sgow. 
Directors — 15ailie Catiipbell, G. Stark, T. Cameron, Jas. Ballan- 
tyne, J. Tudliope, W. Moffat, ^T.A., Andrew Maclure, D. 
David.son, W. Thom.son, D. Gilmour, W. G. M'Leod, C. W. C. 
M'Farlane, C. Taylor, J. Robertson, R. Bowes, J. B. Gibson, 
and R. Miller. Special features of Club — Literary and social. 

No. 68— SANDYFORD Burns Club. Instituted 1893. Federated 1S94. 
Place of meeting. Secretary's Oftice, 100 W. Regent Street, 
Glasgow. President, Bailie Malcolm Campbell, 18 Gordon Street, 
Gla.sgow ; Vice-president, Alexander Dulhie, Kversley, Newlands, 
Glasgow ; Secretary, Andrew P. Hamilton, writer, 100 West 
Reee't Street, Glasgow ; Hon. Treasurer, James P. M'Phie, 6 
Bisliop Street. Anderston, Glasgow. Special features of Club — 
Annual dinner and dance on 215th January ; also kcturesand social 
and musical evenings in Giand Hotel, Glasgow. 

No. 69— DUNEDIN Burns Club. Federated 1894. President, R. 
Sandilands, (Queen's Drive, Musselburgh, Dunedin, N.Z. 

No. 70-GL.\SGOW St. Rollox Jolly Beggars Bums Chib (dormant). 
Federated 1894 

No. 71 -CARLISLE Burns Club. In.stituled 25th [anuary, 1889. Federated 
1895. Place and date of meeting, Crown and .Mitre Hotel, 
Carlisle, monthly (Saturdays). President, Dr Doughty, Dalston, 
Carlisle ; Vice-Presidents, Dr Bird, fames Porteous, F. [ones, 
T. Caion, D. Main, G. C. Muir, G. "Morion, Wm. Reid," John 
Jardine, and Thomas WeLsh. Secretary, Walter A. Mather, Mid- 
land Bank Chambers, Carlisle. Special features of the Club - 

No 72 — PARTICK Burns Club. I'^ederated 1895. Secretary, Wm. Scott 
Wyllie, 149 St. Vincent Street, Glasgow. 

No. 73— LENZIE Burns Club (dormant). Federated 1896. 

No. 74— GL.\SGOW Mauchline Society. Instituted 1888. Federated 1895. 
President, Wm. .M'Adam Sharp, 275 Nithsdale Road, Dumbreck, 
Glasgow ; Vice-president, John Taylor Gibb, Mauchline ; Secre- 
tary, Wm. Campbell, 14 St. Vincent Place, Glasgow ; Treasurer, 
Thomas Killin, Claremont, Stewarlon Drive, Cambusiang. 
Special features of Club — Promote sociability amongst natives of 
Mauchline and friends, and manage the National Burns .Memorial 
and Cottage Homes, Mauchline. 

Nm. 75— KIRN Burns Club. Instituted 251I1 January, 1892. Federated loih 
February, 1896. Place and date of meeting. Kirn Hotel, 25th 
January. President, Councillor James Urummond, Willow Bank, 
Kirn ; \'ice-presidenl, e:c-Provost Wm. Warner, V'ork Cottage, 
East Bay, Dunoon ; Secretary, John MacNair, house agent, Kirn ; 
Treasurer, Councillor Wm. Lees, Firny Crag, Kirn. Committee 


— Councillor Dunbar, James Reid, Alex. Murdoch, R. D. Brown, 
R. Nicholson, and A. M'Leod. Special features of Club— Singing 
and reciting competition for boys and girls- from the Works of 
Burns ; debating and recreation branch every Monday in Kirn 
Brae House ; annual excursion in September : anniversary supper, 
2jih January. 

No. 76- BRECHIN Burns Club. Ins'ituted January, 1S94. Federated ytb 
iMaich, 1S96. Place and dale of inefiiny, ?Uechanics' Hall. 25th 
January. I'resident, William Anderson, solicitor, 2 Airlie Street, 
Ikechin ; Vice-president, Charles Thomson, lia'-ibank, Brechin ; 
Sfiretaiy, ¥. C. Anderson, 10 St. Mary Si reel, Brechin. Com- 
mittee — Edward W. Mowat, James A. lluicheon. J. Scott Lindsay, 
J. W. Lammond, George W. Mitchell, and George Henderson. 

No. 77— PAISLEY Tannaliill (Glenifter) Hums Club. Instituted 1892. 
Federated 1S96. Secretary, Thomas Campbell, 19 Kilnside Road, 

No. 78— GLASGOW Ardgowan Burns Club (dormant). Instituted 1S93. 
Federated 1896. Secreiaiy, John Fuirley, 1(0 Cathcart Street, 
Kingston, Glasgow. 

No. 79— CORSTORPHINE Burns Club. Instituted 18S7. Federated 
1896. Place and date of meeting. Public Hall, Corstorphine, 25th 
January, March, and November. President, J. E. Cowan, 
J. P., Bank of Scotland, Corstorphine ; Vice-president, James R. 
Watson, Romano, Corstorphine ; Secretary, W. Wilson, 
C.E., 7 Bellgrave Place, Corstorphine; Bard, Rev. James Fergus- 
son. Committee — 8 members. Special features of Club — Two 
quarterly meetings, at which a paper is read, and afterwards 
social, Burns's songs, etc. ; anniversary festival, 25th January. 

No. 8o^DUNOON Cowall Burns Club. Instituted 1S96. Federated 1896. 
Secretary, Walter Grieve, James Place, Dunoon. 

No. 81— CARSTAIRS Junction Burns Club. Instituted 1S96. Federated 
1896. Secretary, William Neill, Burnside Cottages, Carstairs 

No. 82— ARBROATH Bums Club. Instituted 1888. Federated 1896. 
Secretary, Harry Lorimer, solicitor, 25 Market Place, Arbroath. 

No. 83^GLASGOW Co-operative Burns Club. Instituted 1S96. Fede- 
rated 1896. President, J. leffrey Hunter. 109 Bath Street, 
Glasgow ; Secretaiy, H. Kelly, Greenlodge Terrace, Greenhead, 

No. 84— ABINGTON Burns Club (dormant). Federated 1896. 

No. 85— DUNFERMLINE United Burns Club. Instituted 1812. Fede- 
rated I2th November, 1896. Place and date of meeting. Royal 
Hotel, Dunfermline, 25th January. President, Wm. Black, 
Charlestown, Dunfermline ; Vice-president, P. Donald, East Port 
Street, Dunfermline ; Secretary, P. Paterson, 23 Bruce Street, 
Dunfermline. Committee— A. T. Wilkie, W. D. Imrie, Wm. 
Robertson, Thomas Don, Bailie Jas. Stewart. J. C. Craig, Andrew 
Lyon, Wm. Fitzpatrick, R. Taylor, Jas. Rodger. 



No. S6— CUMNOCK Winsome Willie. Instituted 1856. Federated 12th 
November, 1896. Place of meeting, Hotel Royal, occasionally. 
President, George Begg, Back Row, Lugar, l)y Cumnock ; \'ice- 
president, William Mitchell, Strand, Cumnock ; Secretary, Hugh 
Campbell, 43 Barrhill Road, Cumnock ; Treasurer, Gilbert 
M'Kissock, kilnholm Place, Cumnock. Committee— Robert 
Hislop, William Hislop, Douglas Clark, James M'Crindle, Hugh 
M'Crindle, James Logan, Andrew Hart, and William M'Kie. 

No. 87— CAM rSIE Burns Club. Insiituied 1890. Federated 1896. Place 
of meeting, Lenno-\ Arms. Sccrc/aiv, R. W. Robertson, Russell 
Place, Lennoxtown. 

No. 88— GLASGOW Caledonian Burns Club. Instituted October, 1896. 
Federated 2nd March, 1897. Place of meeting, 25 Caledonia 
Road. Secretary, John Muirhead, c/o Drunmiond, 136 Roselea 
1 'rive, Glasgow. 

No. 89— SUNDERLAND Burns Club. Instituted January, 1897. Federated 
April, 1897. Place and date of meeting. Palatine Hotel, 2nd and 
4lh Wednesd.ays, October to March, 2nd Wednesday April, May, 
September — 8 p.m. President, W. A. Culshaw, 119 High Street, 
W. Sunderland; Vice-president, M. M'Kay, 12 Frederick Street, 
Sunderland; Sec)eiary,y\.. Neilsoii, i4Whickham Street, E. Sunder- 
land ; Treasurer, A. W. Semple ; Librarian, G. Mackay; Auditor, 
W^ P. Eastwood ; Pianist, C. Pelrie ; Hon. Piper, G. Murray. 
Committee — W. II. Turner, D. Condie, W^ P. Eastwood, M. 
MacLennan, and G. Murray. Special features of the Club — 
Anniversary dinner, Scottish concert, ftapers and lectures, 
visitation of clubs, and interest in the \vell-l)eing of .Scotsmen in 
and around Sunderland, \isitors cordially welcomed. 

No. 90 - GARELOCHHEAD Burns Club. Instituted i8lh Novemlier, 1S95. 
Federated 21st May, 1897. Place of meeting, the Hotel, Gare- 
lochhead. President, Rev. John Patterson, Tine Manse, Gareloch- 
head ; Vice-president, David Starl<, Anchorage, Gareloch- 
head ; Secretary, John Douglas, Dahlandhui, Garelochhead. 

No. 91— SHETTLESTON Burns Club. Instituted 1897. Federated 1897. 
Place of meeting, Loudoun Arms Hf)ie], Duke Street, Glasgow. 
President, County Councillor W. J. Grant, i Beechwood Terrace, 
Sandyhills, Shetlleston; Vice-president, R. H. Milholm, Sommer- 
ville Place, Glasgow ; Sec7-etary, Hugh 'S'. Reid, 209 Main Street, 
Shettleston ; Treasurer, Thos. Barrie, Hasplaw, Shettleslon. 

No. 92— KILBOWIE Jolly Beggars Burns Club. Instituted August, 1897. 
Federated September, 1897. Place and time of meeting, 
Restaurant, Clydebank, at 7.30 p.m. President, Alex. M'Donald, 
53 Montrose Street, Kilbowie ; Vice-president, William .Allan ; 
Secretary, Peter Delacourt, 46 Crown Avenue. Radnor Park, 
Kilbowie; Pianist, John Cusick. Committee — D. M'Williams, 
1). M'Farlane, T. Walters, Wm. Paterson, I). J. Clark, John 
Stewart, Alexander Lockhart, and Alexander Davidson. 

N,,. 93— CLYDEBANK Burns Club (dormant). Federated 1897. 

No. 94— UPHALL Tarn o' Shanter Burns Club. Federated 1897. 

No. 95— BOLTON Burns Club. Instituted 6th September, 1881. Federated 
1897. Secretary, Chas. H. Mallison, Oaklands, .Seymour Road, 


No. 96— JEDIJURGII Burns Club. liisULuled 1869. Federaled 1897. 
Seartary, Peter Telfer, 58 Castlegate, Jedburgh. 

No. 97— KILMARNOCK Bellfield Burns Club. Instituted 1895. Fede- 
rated 189S. Place and date of meeting, Bellfield Tavern, first 
Friday of month, at 8 p.m. President, John Borland, Megland, 
S. Andrews Street, Kilmarnock ; Vice-president, Alex. Rodger, 
68 S. Andrews Street, Kilmarnock ; Secretary, R. Ritchie, 1 1 
Welbeck Street, Kilmarnock ; Treasurer, T. Neilson, Paxtoii 
Street. Committee— James Neilson, W. Brown, James Fccles, J. 
I^indsay, and G. Benham. Special features of Club — Socinl 
intercourse amongst the members and kindred clubs : celebration 
of the Poet's birth ; meetings for the reading of literary papers 
relative to the life and \V(3rks of Burns, and kindred subjects. 

No. 98— LANARK Burns Club. Instituted 1891. Federated 17th January, 
1898. Place and date of meeting. Market Hotel, quarterly meetings. 
President, Thomas Lithgow, Fuirowflat, Lanark ; \'ice-president, 
William Brown, Ruliislaw, Lanark ; Seo-elaiy, John Ross, 
Caledonian House, Lanark ; Treasurer, Robtit Martin. Com- 
mittee — Jas. Elylh, R. Flemington, W. Fergus, G. C. Arnot, A. 
Neilson, and James M. Cassels. Special features of Club — Burns 
competition to be held annually amongst the children attending 
schools. 50 members. 

No. 99 — BARLINNIE Burns Club. Instituted 25th January, 1893. 
Federated 20tii January, 1898. Place of meeting, 

Barlinnie. President, Ca]3t. R. P. II. Munro ; Vice-president, 
Dr W. J. H. Sinclair, M.B., CM. ; Secretai y,.\. Mackay, Officers' 
Quarters. Barlinnie ; Treasurer, A. Rein. Committee — G. I). 
Stoliie, D. Gardiner, j. Murray, and J. M'(,)uakcr. Director of 
Entertainments, T. Wilkie. Delegates — 1). G. Stobie, G. D. D. 
Geekie, A. M'Kay. Auditors, J. Scott and A. Chisholm. 

No. 100— HAMILTON Mossgiel Burns Clnb. Instituted 1892. Federated 
4th April, 1898. Place and date of meeting. Royal Hotel, 
Hamilton, first Tuesday in the month, at 8.15 p.m. President, 
John D. Lightbody, Ardenlea, Portland Park, Hamilton ; Vice- 
president, George Thorpe, 2 Park View, Portland Park, Hamilton ; 
Secretary James Wilson, 18 Avon Street, Hamilton ; Treasurer, 
William Hamilton, Burnfoot, Hamilton. Committee — Hugh 
Mair, Wm. Maxwell, John Campbell, Wm. Ijjndshaw, Tames 
Bell, Wm. Stewart, and Arch. Claik, juii. 

No. loi— MOTHERWELL Workmen's Burns Clul'. Federated 1898. 
Secretary, John King, 128 Muir Street, Motherwell. 

No. 102— CARLISLE Border Burns Club (dormant). Instituted 189S. 
Last Secretary, ^Vndrew Rafell, 36 London Road, Carlisle. 

No. 103— COALBURN Burns Club. Federated 189S. Secretary, John 
Woodburn, Coalburn Inn, Coalburn. 

No. 104— DUMFRIES Oak Burns Club. Federated 1898. Secretary, 
Thomas Haining, jun., 26 Swan's Vennel, Dumfries. 

No. 105— RUTHERGLEN Cronies Burns Club. Instituted 1896 Federated 
1898. Place and date of meeting, Burnhill Rest, last Friday of 
every month. President, William Stewart, 24 West Muir Place, 
Rutherglen ; Vice-president, James Robertson, 12 Chapel Street, 


KuUiert;leii ; Sciitfair, Robert M'Lulchie, 12 Wallace Slreet, 
Rmheiiilen ; Treasurer, Samuel Stevenson, 60 Burnhill Slreet, 
Kutliers;len. Committee A. Anderson, R. Ferguson, A. 
M'llveen, J. Palerson, and William Donaldson. 

No. 106— HROXBURN Roseherv TUitns Clnl). Federated 189S. Secre/ajy, 
Joseph Millar, Ashfield Huildini^s, Uphall. 

Jvo. 107— GLASGOW Mulchesontown Ikuns Cluh (dormani). Federated 

No. 108— EAST C.\LDER and District Jolly Beggars Burns Club. Instituted 
February 3rd, 1S97. Federated June 7th, 1899. Place and date 
of meelini:. Grapes Inn, East Calder, at S o'clock. President, 
William Noung, Merchant, East Calder; Vice-President, James 
Millar, Limekilns Farm, East Calder ; Secretary, George Young, 
Limefield Cottage, Fast Calder : Treasurer, James Robertson. 
Special features of Club — To study Burns and his works. 

Xo. 109— GLASGOW Caledonia Burns Club. Instituted September, 1S98. 
Federated 24th March, 1899. Secretary, William Galloway, 77 
I'reston Street, Govanhill, Glasgow. 

Xo. 110— CA.MBUSLANG Burns Club. Instituted 1850. Federated 1898. 
Secretary, James Robertson, Monkcastle Drive, Canibuslang. 

No. Ill— SOUTH EDINBURGH Burns Club. Instituted 1879. Federated 
1899. Secretary, John .S. T. Walker, i Sumnierbank, Edinburgh. 

No. 112— DUMFRIES Burns HowftClub. Instituted 18S9. Federated loth 
August, 1899. Pkice of meeting. Globe Hotel, High Street. 
Hon. President, J. W. Howat, St. Michael's Terrace, Dumfries j 
President, James Bell, English Slreet, Dumfries; \'ice-president, 
E. Campbell, Henry Street, Dumfries; Secretary, Jno. Connor, 
61 St. Michael Street, Dumfries ; Treasurer, T. Robertson, 
Dockhead, Dumfries; Auditor, J. Grierson, Nellieville Terrace, 
Maxwelllowii. Committee — T. Craig. T. Batey, A. Cochrane, T. 
Draflfan, J. Houston, R. Kerr, J. Maxwell, and T. Robertson. 

No. 113— VALE OF LEX'ENGIencairn Burns Club. Instituted 1S97. Feder- 
ated 1899. Place and time of meeting, .Albert Hotel, Alexandria, 
last Saturday of each month, at 7.30. Hon. President — William 
White, 44 Bridge Street, Alexandria ; President, Hugh M'\'ean, 
Mossgiel, Dalmonach Road, Bonhill ; A'ice-president, James 
M'Innes, Napierston Terrace, Jamestown ; Secretaiy, Daniel 
Macmillan, 38 W'ilson Street, Alexandria ; Treasurer, W^illiam 
Smith, Bridge Square, Alexandria. Committee — Daniel .MInnes, 
John M'Gowan, Thomas Peters, and Walter Clark. Special 
"features of Club — Celebration of the 25th Jaiuuu}-, summer outing, 
and occasionally short papers by members, 

No. 114— BRODICK Burns Club. Instituted 1899. Federated 1900. 
Secretaiy, John S. Currie, I-irodick. 

No. 115— KIPPEN and District liurns Club. Instituted 2ist July, 1S96. 
F'ederated 20th January, 1900. Place and dale of meeting, 
Gillespie Hall; Annual Meet ng. Novemberi2. President, Thomas 
-Syme, Middle Kerse, Kippen .Station, by .Stirling ; Vice-president, 
Andrew Main,.Strewiebank. Kippen Station, by .'Stirling; ^ecie^ary, 
Archd. M'Di.irmid. Woodsid^, Kippen Station, by Stirling. 


Committee— [as. M'Ewen, Peter Watson, J'jhn M'Lean, John 
M. Syme, David Wilson, Robert Jackson, Sam Thompson, Robert 
Seekie, Thomas Ingles, Alexr. M'Diarmid, and George M'Queen. 
Special features of the Club— To promote a knowledge of the life 
and works of Burns, and establish a fund for the cultivation and 
learning of the works of Burns and Scottish literature among the 
schoolchildren of our district, and having competitions for which 
handsome prizes are given. 

No. ii6— GREENLOANING Burns Club. Instituted 1SS9. Federated 
1900. Place and date of meeting, Greenloaning Inn, 25th 
January. President, Thomas Stewart, The Braes, Greenloaning, 
Braco ; Vice-president, Francis Sands, Glenbank Farm, Green- 
loaning, Braco ; Secretary, James Bayne, Kinbuck, Dunblane. 
Committee— J. M'Naugh'ton,' G. Robertson, J. :\ITlldowie, J. C. 
Couper, R. Taylor. 

No. 117— GLASGOW Southern Burns Club (dormant). Instituted 1S99. 
Federated 1900. 

No. i]8— GLASGOW Albany Burns Club. Instituted 1900. Federated 1900. 
Place of meeting, Trades' House Restaurant, 89 (jlassford Street, 
Glasgow. Honorary President, Professor John Glaister, M. D. ; 
President, James Raeside, 125 North John Street, Glasgow ; Vice- 
presidents, Andrew Black. R.S.W., 69 St. Vincent Street, 
Glasgow, and John R. Mirrlees, 27 Woodend Drive, JTordanhill, 
Glasgow ; Secretary, Robert (yarmichael, 89 Elderslie Street, 
Glasgow ; Treasurer, Alexander Gray, 67 Great Hamilton Street, 
Glasgow. Directors — G. W. Gillies, R. K. Philson, John Grant, 
R. D. Donaldson, P. M'Fryde, and W. G. Hay. Pa"st Presidents 
— Robert Goodall, J. Wilson Bain, James Taylor, Thomas 
Kennedy, |ohn Brown, N. Macwhannell, and John A. Headrick. 
Special features of Club — Lectures and harmony, and to cultivate 
a knowledge of the works of Burns among school children, in con- 
nection with which a compel ii ion is held yearly, and medals and 
volumes given to the successful competitors. Membeiship limited 
to 150. 

No. 119— BONHILL Burns Club. Instituted 1900. Federated 1900. 
Secretary, George Moir, 75 Dillichip Loan, ISonhill. 

No. 120— BRISTOL Caledonian Society. Instituted 1S20. Federated 19CO. 
President, Aid. H. W. Twiggs, J. P., N'ictoria Street, Bristol ; 
Secretary, A. J. Gardner, C.A., 4 St. Stephen's Chambers, Bristol ; 
Treasurer, W.' Armour, Castle Green, Bristol. Special feature of 
Club — Benevolent. 

No. 121— HAMILTON Junior Burns Club. Instituted September, 1886. 
Federated April, igor. Place and date of meeting, Robert Bell's, 
Union Street. Hamilton, Monday, 8 p.m. President, James 
Brown, 61 (Quarry Street, Hamilton : Vice-iircsident, John 
M'Intyre, 17 Kemp Street, Hamilton; .SV,vvA7; r, William Wilson, 
27 Duke Street, Hamilton; Treasurer. John SieAart ; Minute 
Secretary, Archibald Thomson ; Steward, James Gourlay. Com- 
mittee— A. Dickson, J. M'Millan, C. Stewart. Special features 
of Club — Reading of essays on various subjects, concerts, competi- 
lions, summer rambles, and social evenings. 


No. 122 -DAKNCOXXKR Aini"s Moss Durns Cluln Insiiuiied igcx). 
T'edeiated 41I1 November, 1901. I'lace of meeling, Sorn. 
I'resident, Ilutrh Sloan, 71 Walker Row, Aucliinleck ; Vice- 
President, Andrew Neil. 90 Darnconner, Aucliinleck ; Secretary, 
.Andrew Sievenson, (ilenlos^an, iMaiichline. Committee — Hugh 
Re\ nulds, John Lyons, John Morion, janies Naismith. 

No. 123— .\UCliINLKCK Boswell I^urns Clul). Instituted loth December, 
1901. Federated loih December, 1901. Place and date of 
meeting, Boswell Arms, last Saturday of every month. President, 
Matthew Wallace, Coal Road, Auchinleck : "\'ice-president, George 
M'Comb, Shilock Terrace, Auchinleck ; Secretary, William Hall, 
High, Auchinleck ; Hon. Presidents— W. T- W. Morton, 
W. Wilson, J. P., and W. J. Grahame. Special features of Club — 
To meet and study the works and ideals of Kabbie Burns. 

No. 124— EDINHL'RCIH Ninety Burns Club. Instituied 1S90. Federated 
1S92. Place of meeting, various. President, Robert Burns 
Brown, 44 Hanover Street ; Vice-president, James Hewat, 37 
Forrest Road ; Secretary, G. VV. Taylor, 39 George l\. Bridge ; 
Treasurer, John Munro. 85 Shandwick Place. Committee — Or 
W. D. Osier, John Currie, H. Campbell (iranl, J. C. Scott, J. 
Augustus Beddie. Special features of Club — Annual dinner, 
dance, summer outing. 

No. 125-BLACKHLRN-OX-ALMOND Rabbie Burns Club. Instituted 
1900. Federated 1902. Place and date of meeting. Almond Inn, 
first Thursday of month from October to .\pril. President, Alex. 
Gardiner, Margaret's Cottages, Blackburn, Bathgate : Vice- 
president, George Greig, Turf Inn, Blackburn, Bathgate ; 
Secreiaiy, Peter Brutin, 8 Paul's Buildings, Blackburn, Bathgate ; 
Treasurer, Jo-eph Fleming. Committee— James Robb, Sam. 
Boslock, James Middleton, Robert Carlyle, and T. Wallace. 
Special features of Club — Annual dinner on January 25th and 
social last P'riday in March, with singing and reciting competitions 
on Burns's works for school children. 

No. 126— F.VLKIRK Burns Club. Instituted uS66. Federated 1902. 
Place of meeting, Maihieson's Rooms, High Street. President, 
Dr Dugald Mitchell, J. P., Dunoran, Camelon, Falkirk ; Vice- 
presidents, Sheriff Moffat, Arnotdale, and e.x-Provost Christie, 
Elmbank ; Secretary, H. B. Watson, 121 High Street, Falkirk ; 
Treasurer, R. S. .\itchison, solicitor. Committee — F. I). 

P'erguson, T. C. Wade, Jas. M. Wilson, F. Johnston, and A. 
C. Mackay. Special features of Club — .Annual dinner on 25th 
January ; half-yearly literary meetings open to lady friends ; 
annual excursion to places associated with Burns. 

No. 127— (X)WDhNBE.\TH Ilaggis Burns Club. Instituted 1903. 
Federated 7th November, 1903. Place and date of meeting, 
Foulford Rooms, every alternate Tuesday, at 7 p.m. President, 
William Miller, (Slenview, P'oulford Road, Cowdenbeath ; Vice- 
presidents, John Bain, Hall Street, and Sam. White, c/o John Bain, 
Hall Street ; Secretary, James Petrie Glen, 16 Poulford Road, 
Cowdenbeath. Committee -D. Jamieson, T. Lark, II. Pinlip, 
and A. Campbell. 


No. 12S— GLENCAIRN (Cowdenbeath) Burns CUih. Instituted 1898. 
Federated 14th May, 1903. Place and date of meeting, Raith 
Anns Inn, Friday, at 7 p.m. Hon. President, Peler White; 
President, David Smith, Rose Street ; Vice-president, Thos. 
Wilson, Auriher's Street; Secretary, Wm. Breingan, Raith Arms 
Inji ; Treasurer, Tom Ferguson. Committee — Alex. Thomson, 
Peter Banks. Jas. Gillind, fohn Banks, Jas. Bonnar. Special 
leatiires of CIuU — To keep alive tlie memory of Scotland's greatest 
Bard, Robert Burns. 

No. 129— GORBALS Burns Club. Instituted 1902. Federated nth June, 
1903. President, Bailie Archibald Campbell, Albert Drive, 
Pollokshields ; Vice-president, James Milligan, 2 South Portland 
Street ; Secretary, .Andrew Ailken, solicitor, 212 Bath Street, 
Glasgow. Special features of Club — To foster the study of Burns's 

No. 130 — ROW Burns Club. Instituted 6th February, 1902. Federated 
1903. Place and date of meeting, Colquhoun Arms, January, 
yune, and October, at 8 p m. President, Major John M'Farlane, 
I West Clyde Street, Helensburgh; Vice-presidents, N. M. M'Le(5d, 
Fiunary, Shandon ; Captain G. S. Deverell, R.N., Clyde Training 
Ship " Empress," Row ; Secretary, Robert Sloan, Greenside 
Cottage, Row ; Treasurer, George Walker, Laggray Lodge, Row. 
Special features of club — Social intercourse among its members. 

No. 131 - NOTTINGHAM Scottish Association. Instituted October, 1902. 
Federated November, 1903. Place and date of meeting. 
Mechanics' Institution, Room 75, 2nd and 4th Tuesdays, October 
to March inclusive, at 8 p.m. President, John Crawford, The Old 
Rectory, Bulwell ; Vice-presidents, Dr J. Smith, Raleigh Street ; 
N. C. Stewart, 8 Newstead Grove ; Treasurer, G. E. Bain, The 
Capital and Counties Bank, Ltd., Market Place ; Se retary, J. G. 
Simpson, loi Portland Road. Council — J. Chapman, J. Currie, 
Dr W. Hunter, M. J. Kay, D. Macadie, A. C. .Vlacdonald, D. 
Macgregor, J. M'Meeking, E. Merson, Dr j. Mdler, G. A. 
Mitchell, Dr T- Watson, A. C. Watt, and A. W. Whyte. Auditors, 
T. II. Inglisand A. M'Gougan. 

No. 132— RICCARTOX Kirk^,tyle Burns Club. Instituted January, 1904. 
Federated l6tb Nrvember, 1904. Secretary, Arclid. X'oung. 88 
Campbell Sircct, Riccarlon. 

No. 133— NEWARTHILL Burns Club. Instituted 26ih September, 1903. 
Federated 28ih March, 1904. Place and date of meeting. Miss 
Janet Wipers, last Saturday every month. President, John 
Henshaw, North Road, Newarthill, Motherwell ; Vice-president, 
Thomas Nimmo, Co-operative Buildings, Newarthill, Motherwell ; 
Secretary, William Moore, Big'^ar Road, Newarthill, Motherwell ; 
Treasurer, George Cook, Voung's Place, Newarthill, Motherwell. 
Committee— T. Crombie, J. Lafferty, A. M'Given, H. Moore, 
and W. M'Kissock. Special features of the Club— To promote 
social intercourse among its members by means of songs, recitations, 
essays, &c. 

No. 134— "THE HERON"' Burns Club, Duntocher. Instituted i8th 
November, 1897. P>derated 7th April, 1904. Secretary, K. R. 
Chalmers, Main Street, Duntocher. 


No. 135— PAKTICK VVesiciii Uiirns Cliih. Insiilulcd 1903. Federated 
1904. riaco ofnu-elinj;, Windsor Restauianl, I'ariick. I'resident, 
Daniel Menzies ; Vice-president, Isaac Hislop ; Secretary, James 
Gilchrist, 6 Dudley Drive, Partick ; lion. Treasurer, James 
Webster. Committee— H. M 'Coll, A. Fer.ujuson, M. Bertram, J. 
A. Biggs, F. Jones, J. M'Barnet, J. L. D. M'Cay, B. C. 
M'Donald, D. M'Neisli, A. Monat, Jas. Newall, Jno. Roy, W. 
A. Roberison, D. Simpson, J. D. Smith, A. A. Stewart, Jno. 
Stewart, E. Gough. jas. Waison, jun., D. Davidson, and John 
Grant. Special feature of Club — Meet once a month for lectures 
throughout the .session. 

No. 136— HAMILTON Royal Oak Burns Club. Instituted 1S9S. Federated 
6th June, 1904. Seitr/ary, Robert Brownlic, 7 Downie Street, 
Lowwaters, Han^ilton. 

No. 137— IPSWICH Burns Club. Instituted I2th Feb., 1902. Federated 
1st November, 1904. Place and date of meeting, Fox Hotel, 
Ipswich, first Tuesday of every month, at 8 p.m. President, 
Wm. Morrison ; \'ice-president, James Campbell ; Secretary, S. 
Dobbin, Fox Hotel, Brock Street, Ipswich. 

No. 138— CLELAND Burns Club. Instiiuled 19th October, 1904. Fede- 
rated 22nd November, 1904. Secretary, Robert M'Millan, 
Hornshill, Cleland. 

No. 139— NATIONAL Burns Club, Ltd. Instituted 1904. Federated 1904. 
Place of meeting, Club Rooms, 93 Douglas Street. President, 
John Carmichael, 27 Blythswt)od Drive : Vice-president, Peter 
Glrtsse, 185 liyers Road ;' Seo-etary ami Treasurer, Joseph Martin, 
solicitor, 163 West George Street. 

No. 140— POLLOKSHAWS Burns Club. Insiituied 1S65. Federated 
1905. Place of meeting. Burgh Halls, Pollokshaws. President, 
County Councillor Andrew M 'Galium. 35 Harriet Street ; Vice- 
president, George C. Mearns. Auldfield Place ; Secretary, James 
Milne, Burgh Halls, Polloksliaws. 

No. 141— STONEHOUSE Burns Club. Instituted 1904. Federated 1905. 
Place of meeting. Buck's Head Inn. .SVivr/a;;;', James Graham, 
58 New Sireet, Stoiiehouse. 

No. i42~BONNYBRIDGE Bums Club. Instituted loih January, 1905. 
Federated 22nd February, 1905. ."secretary, John Towers, Allan- 
hill Cottage, Bonnybridge. 

No. 143— AIRDRIE Galeside Burns Club. Instituted 6th Novenilier, 1904. 
Federated 1st May. 1905. Secretary, Alex. W. Ritchie, Lajrel 
Bank, Queen Victoria Street, Airdrie. 

No. 144— LARBERT and STENHOUSEMUIR Temperance Burns Club. 
Instituted 1904. P'ederated 1905, Secretary, Jolm Richardson, 
Annslea, South Broomage, Larbert. 

No. 145— GLASGOW Central Burns Club and Literature Institute, Limited. 
Instituted 1905. Federated August, 1905. Place of Meeting, 42 
Argyle Sireet. Secretary, W. I). M'Laren, 42 Argyle Street, 


No. 146— DUBLIN Burns CUilj. Instituted 1905. Federated 1905. Patron, 
Mis Excellency the Karl of Aberdeen, K.P., K.T., Lord 
Lieutenant of Ireland ; President, Thomas" A. Stoddart, 16 
Northumberland Road ; Vice-president, John Beatty, 2 Harry 
Street ; Seciefary, John Farquhar, 21 Windsor Avenue. F'airview, 
]~)ublin : Treasurer, Alex. Lyon, ill Botanic Road, Glasnevin ; 
Auditors, Messrs John Bigi^ar and J. B. Taylor. 

No. 147- STONEIIOUSE Haggis Burns Club. Eederaled 28th October, 
1905. Secretary, R. Whitelaw, 22 Camnethan Street, Stonehouse. 

No. 14S— GREENOCK Cronies Burns Club. Instituted January, 1899. 
Federated 9th November, 1905. Place of meeting. Shepherds' 
Hall, Cathcart Street. President, Angus Mitchell, 18 Wellington 
Street, Greenock ; Vice-president, William Trottar, S Brisbane 
Street, Greenock ; Secretary., Hugh Cammack, 28 Lynedoch 
Street, Greenock ; Treasurer, William Burnside, 25 Bruce Street, 
Greenock. Special features of Club — To cherish the name of 
Robert Burns and foster a love for his writings, and generally to 
promote good-fellowship. 

No. 149 — ELGIN Burns Club. Resuscitated 1900. Federated 1905. Secre- 
faiy, John Foster, Sheriff-Clerk of Elginshire ; Treasurer, John B. 
Mair," Chief-Constable, Elgm. 

No. 150— KILMARNOCK Jolly Beggars Burns Club. Instituted 1905. 
Federated 1905. Place and date of meeting, "Wee Thack,'' 
Grange Street, first Monday of each month and every Saturday 
night at 7.45. Hon. Presidents — Arch. Laird, Alex. Kerr, and 
Andrew Sinclair, P.C. ; President, Alex. Begg, jun., 4i Nursery 
Street ; Vice-president, John Douglas, 65 King Street ; Secre- 
tary, R. J. Green, 58 Park Street. Special features of Club — To 
keep in touch with Burns and foster the spirit " Shall brithers be 
for a' that." Also lectures during the months of September and 
April inclusive, and rambles during the months of May to August 
inclusive ; and to celebrate the anniversary of liis birtli in supper, 
sung, and sentin.ent. 

No. 151— OLD KILPATRICK Burns Club. Instituted January, 1904. 
Federated 20th [anuary, 1906. Place and date of meeting, 
Gentles' Hall, monthly meeting, 8 p.m. President, Hugh Miller, 
Hillview, Station Road, Old Kilpauick : \ ice-president, Robert 
Newlands, Gavinhurn Terrace, ( )1(1 Kilpairick : Secretary, 
Robert Smith, Maryville, Old Kirkpainck ; Treasurer, John 
Brock, Dalnottar Terrace, Old Kilpatrick. Special features of 
Club — Course of lectures, children's singing and recitation com- 
petition, general study of Burns's works, i\:c. 

No. 152— HAMILTON Burns Club. Instituted 1877. Federated 1906. 
Place and date of meeting, Commeiciul Hotel, Hamilton, during 
winter as arranged. I'resident, William Gunn, Mminda, Hamil- 
ton ; Vice-president. James D. Rankin, Rockburn, Hamilton ; 
Secretary, John Main, Almada Street. Hamilton ; Treasurer, W. 
Martin Kay, Craigton Lodge, Hamilton. Special features of 
Club — Lectures at meetings ; prizes offered for competition in the 
Burgh Schools for proficiency in Scottish literatine. 

No. 153— SCOTTISH Burns Clu1), Instituted January 25th, 1904. Fede- 
rated 2nd March, igo6. Place and date of meeting, 60 Union 


S.reel, Glasgow, VVatldel's Rooms, first Tluusday of each month. 
1 "resident, Mr John S. Gilchrisl, 20 Marlljorough Ciardens, Old 
Cathcan ; \'ice-presiilents, Dr James Devon. 6 Cathedral Square, 
and Ninean M'Whannell, 1366 Tollokshaws Road; Secretary, W. 
Roljcrtson Wilson, 6 Ralston Drive, Ihrox, Glasgow. Committee 
— ^John K. M'Dowall, J. 1'., and Thomas Devlin. Special features 
of Clul) — Burnsiana, social, lectures, etc. 

No. 154— JOn.ANNESBURG Bums Club. Insiituied 1900. Federated 
1906. Secretary, Riciiard Rusk, solicitor, Natal Bank Buildings, 
>Iarket Square, Johannesiiurg. 

^'o- 155— K.\ST STIRLINGSHIRE Burns Clul). Instituted 25th January, 
1905. Federated 1st September, 1900. I'licc of meeting, Cross 
Roads Inn, Bainsford, (juarterly. President, folin Duncan Silcock, 
13 Gordon Terrace, Carron Road, Falkirk ; \'ice-president, 
William Galbraiih, M'Callum Terrace, Carron Road, Falkirk ; 
Secretary, .\lexander Glen, 12 Gordon Terrace, Carron Road, 
Falkirk ; Treasurer, James M 'Williams. Committee — John Dow, 
Robert Greenaway, Hugh Rowand, George Taylor, Robert C. 
Young. Special features of the Club — To foster and maintain an 
intimate and thorough knowledge of the life an'.l works of Burns ; 
to celebrate the anniversary of his i)irth in supper, song, and 
sentiment ; and to propagate and encourage a kind, social, and 
brotherly feeling one towards another. 

No. 156--NEWCASTLE and TVNESIDE Burns Club. Instituted 1864. 
Federated 4th October, 1906. Place of meeting. Central Exchange 
Hotel. President, Dr R. Anderson, 4 Gladstone Terrace, Gates- 
head ; Vice-president, I). N. Brims, Springbank, Benwell ; 
Secretary, W". H. Blackstock, 22 Nelson Street, Newcastle-on- 
Tyne ; Treasurer, Wm. .Ma.xwell, So Osborne Road, Newcastle- 
on-Tyne. Special feature of Club — Keeping in touch with Burns 
and fostering the spirit " Shall brithers be for a' that." 

N.I. 157-BAILLIESTON CALEDONIAN Burns Club. Instituted 1901. 
Federated 4th October, 1906. Place and date of meeting. Free 
Gardners' Hall, first Tuesday in each month, 8 p.m. President, 
lames Adams, 68a Main Street, Baillieston ; Vice-president, Jas. 
Russell, 152 Main Street, Baillieston ; Secretary, Charles G. 
Paterson, 39 .Muirside Road, Baillieston ; Treasurer, Peter 
Greenshields. Committee— G. Tait, T. Waugh, John Logan, 
James Birrell, and R Adams. Special features of Club — To 
encourage the cultivation of a belter knowledge of Robert Burns 
nnd his works, and to celebrate the anniversary of his birth with a 
.social gathering. 

No. 158 :).\RLINGTON Burns Association. Instituted 8th March, 1906. 
.edcrated i8th October, 1906. Place and date of meeting, Tem- 
perance Institute (average fortnightly during winter— no fixed 
night). President, Philip Wood, M. A., Grammar School, Darling- 
ton : Vice-presidents, Wm. Forster, J. P., John Henderson, and 
John M. Gall; Secretary, R. M. Liddell, 37 Langholm Crescent, 
"Darlington ; Assistant .-secretary. R. G. Brebner ; Treasurer, Geo. 
Lawson. Committee— John C. Veitch, Jas. Shirlaw, Robert 
Storar, Wm. Rodger, Andrew .Morton, John Macfarlane, Dr 
Munro, Gavin Struthers, and Wm. Stevenson. Special features of 
Club— Series of lectures (admi.ssion free, and also open to both 
lady and gentlemen friends of members) ; social evenings ; annual 
Scottish concert ; anniversary dinner. 


No. 159 — WALKER (Newcastle-on-T)-ne) Burns CIuIl Federated nth 
November, 1906. Place and dale of meeting', Stack Hotel, 
Walker, Thursday, once a fortnight, at 7.30, from September till 
April. President, Jno. M'Kay, 623 Welbeck Road, Walker; 
Vice-presidents, Jno. Keith, 663 Welbeck Road, Walker, and 
Jas. Crawford, 74 Rochester Street, Walker ; Secretary, Andrew 
D. Bell, 47 Whitworth Street, Walker-on-Tyne ; Treasurer, 
Robert M'Rory, 29 Eastbourne Gardens, Walker. Special 
feature of Club — To cultivate better friendship amongst Scotsmen, 
and especially to spread a knowledge of our national Poet, his 
songs, and works amongst his admirers, &c. 

No. 160— WHITBURN Burns Club. Instituted 23rd February, 1906. 
Federated November, 1906. Secretary, Allan Johnston, Lea 
Street, Whitburn. 

No. 161— CHARLESTON Burns Club, Paisley. Instituted 1905. Federated 
1906. Place of meeting, 17 Stevenson Street, at 8.30 p.m. 
President, James Welsh, Ardenlea, Elderslie ; Vice-presidents, 
A. C. Miller, Arkleston Road, Paisley, and Alexander Smith, 4 
Mary Street, Paisley ; Seo-etaiy, J. C. Mackay, 24 Stock Street, 
Paisley. Committee — Jas. Hamilton, Hugh Black, Hugh Young, 
Robert Fleming, and Thomas Summers. Special features of the 
Club — To propagate the knowledge of Burns's writings in the 

]\j,,. 162— PLYMOUTH and District Caledonian Society. Instituted 8th 
February, 1898. Federated 8th March, 1907. Place of meeting, 
Oddfellows' Hall. President, James Thain, "Bon Accord," 11 
Craven Avenue ; Vice-president, Wm. Johnston, 10 Seaton 
Avenue, Mu'.Jey ; Secretary, P. Robertson, 6 Norman Avenue, 

No. 163— GATESHEAD and District Burns Club. Instituted 18S7. 
Federated 1907. Place and dale of meeting, Royal Hotel, first 
Thursday of month. President, T. Hetheringlon. 3 St. P^dmond 
Place, Gateshead ; \ice-piesidenl, E. Bennett, 6 Parkville, 
Heaton, Newcastle-on-Tyne ; Secretary, D. Bain, 13 Denmark 
Street, Gateshead ; Treasurer, W. Bain. Committee— G. Porter, 
T. Thompson, J. Matthewson. Special features of Club — To 
associate Scotsmen and admirers of Burns; to keep up Scotch 
custom and study works of Burns. 

No 164— KINNING PARK Burns Club. Instituted 1881. Federated 1907. 
Place and time of meeting. Masonic Hall, Retland Crescent, 2nd 
Wednesday of month, at 8 p.m. President, James Miller, 15 
Walmer Terrace, Ibrox ; \'ice-president, William Crum Robert- 
son, I Ibrox Place, Ibrox; Seoetury, Thomas Deans, 54 Lamb- 
hill Street, Plantation, Glasgow. Committee — Neil Downie, 
Wallace B. Tod, ex-Bailie R. Neilson, John M'Lachlan, William 
Dickie, Thomas Taylor, Robert Alsto"n, and Robert N. Bain. 
Special features of Club — Competition amongst school children for 
singing and reciting works of Scottish poets ; lectures during the 
year on Scottish literature ; holding of Burns's natal day ; and 
social intercourse amongst member^;. 

No. 165— WALLSEND Burns Club. Instiluled 1898. Federated i8th 
April, 1907. Place and lime of meeting, Juvel's Cafe, High 
Street, ;rd Wednesday in every month. President, Andrew 


Gray, 3 Hum Avenue; N'ice-president, Jno. Cainphell, 9 Laliuinum 
Avenue ; Sccretai y, lvol)eil Johnson, 31 Cuizon koad ; Treasurer, 
Charles Scott, 98 Laburnum Avenue. Special features of Club 
Lovers of Burns and Scottish literature ; Scottish concerts. 

No. 166 — CLEVELAND Scottish Association. Instituted January, 1907. 
Federated July, 1907. Place of meeting, Devonport Hotel, 
fortnightly. President, Alderman Forbes, Old Onnesby ; Vice- 
presidents, Dr Steel, Southfield Villas, and Councillor Crombie, 
Linthorpe ; Secretary, A. Wallace, 6 Royal Plxchange, Middles- 
brough ; Treasurer, John Wilson ; Chairman of Committee, D. 
Sn-.ith. Special features of the Club — The promotion of friendly 
intercourse among the members, and to welcome brither Scots 
arriving from across the border. 

No. 167— BIRMINGHAM Burns Clul). Instituted 13th Jinuary, 1906. Fede- 
rated 13th November, 1907. Place of meeting, Imperial Hotel. 
President, Donald M'Intosh, 31 City Arcade, Birmingham ; Vice- 
presidents, Dr A. I. Essleinont, I Deritend, and R. P. Leslie, 
Burlington Chamljers, New Street, Birmingham ; Hon. Seirefary, 
Wm. Anderson, 3 Wrottesley Street, Birmingham ; Hon. 
Assistant Secretary, D. B. Gray, 11 Dean Road, Erdinglan ; Hon. 
Treasurer, R. M'Kenzie, 10 Reservoir Retreat, Edgbaston. 
Special features of Club — To cherish the name of Robert Burns, 
Scotland's National Poet, and to foster a love for his writings, and 
generally encourage a taste for .Scottish songs and literature ; to 
promote friendly and social intercourse amongst Scotsmen resident 
in Birmingham and district ; to celebrate the anniversary of tlie 
Poet's birthday by a social festival, and to renew our expressions of 
admiration for our great National Poet at other times and dates 
made famous in Scottish history through writings. 

No. 168-RICCARTON Hums Club. Instituted 71I1 February, 1877. 
Federated, 14th January, 1908. Place of meeting. Commercial 
Inn. President, Tas. P. Moir, 45 Campbell Street, Riccarton; Vice- 
president, R. P. Walker, 11 Kay Park Terrace, Kilmarnock; 
Secretary, J. P. Moir, 45 Campbell .Street, Riccarton. Com- 
mittee — Ex-Bailie Burnet, D. K. Porter, las. Cunningham, ex- 
Bailie M'Graw, and R. Wyllie. Special features of the Club — 
•Social intercourse amongst the Burns fraternity ; to spread and 
become familiar with the Poet's works. 

No. i69~GLASG()W AND DISTRICT Association of Hums Clubs and 
Kindred Societie.s. Instituted 8th November, 1907. P'ederated 
1908. Place of meeting. National Burns Club. President, James 
Ballantine, 83 Renfield Street, Glasgow ; Vice-presidents, Alex. 
I'ollock, 52 W. Nile Street, and Hugh M'CoU, 249 W. (Tcorge 
.Street, Glasgow ; Secretary, J. Jeffrey Hunter, writer, 109 Bath 
.Street, Glasgow. Committee -John Carmichael (National). Robt. 
Carmichael (Albany), Archibald Clark (Hamilton), Thomas 
Deans (Kinning Park), G. K. Hunter (Primrose), Alex. M'Kenzie 
(Tarn o' Shanter), John Neilson (Thornliebank), Joe .Silcox, James 
Tudhope (Carlton), Laurence Watt (Barns o' Clyde), and James 
Webster (Western). Special features of Club — To further the 
interests ol the Burns cult by promoting closer union between the 
Clubs in the district and bringing the members of these Clubs 
into more harmonious relationship, and to take the initiative in 
instituting and recommending movements likely to be beneficial to 
the cult. 


No, 170— LARKIIALL Thistle Burns Club. Inslituled November, 1906. 
Federated i8th April, 1908. Place and date of meeting, Victoria 
Bar, 7.30 every Saturday. President, John Fleming, Duke 
Street; Vice-president, Alex. Grieve, 82 Drygate Street ; Secretary, 
]i)hn H. Crozier, 48 Montgomery Street, Larkhall ; Treasurer, 
William Micoil. Committee— Hugh Cairns and Alexander 

Henderson. Special features of Club — To encourage the members 
to lake greater interest in the works of Burns. 

No. 171— CHATTANOOGA Burns Society, Tenn., U.S.A. Instituted 25th 
(anuary, 1908. Federated 2nd June, 1908. Secretary, Robert B. 
Cooke, 1005 James' Buildings, Chattanooga. Tenn., U.S.A. 

No. 172— OREGON Burns Club, Portland, Oregon, U.S.A. Instituted 
25th January, iqo8. Federated I2th November, 1908. Secretary, 
A. Gavin, 1201 William's Avenue, Piedmont, Portland, Oregon, 

No. 173— IRVINE Burns Clul). Instituted 1826. Federated 18th Novem- 
ber, 190S. President, W. G. M'Andrew, M.A. , Netherwood, 
Irvine : Vice-president, James Borland, Meadowview, Irvine ; 
Secretary, Roljert Boyd, B.L., Bellevue, Irvine; Hon. Treasurer, 
Robert F. Longmuir, Roseville, Irvine. 

]S'o. 174— ARUROSSAN Burns Club. Federated November, 1908. Place 
of meeting, Lesser Assembly Rooms. Sccielary, William Adam, 
Craigview, High Street. 

No. 175— MEIKLE EARNOCK Original Burns Club. Instituted 1906. 
P'ederated 190S. Place and date of meeting, John Craig's, first 
Friday of each month at 6.30 p.m. President, Richard H. 
Sneddon, Hazeibank, Strathaven Road, by Hamilton; Vice- 
president, Tames Shepherd, 2 Moore Street, Cadzow, Hamilton ; 
Secretaiy, "William Ross, 63 Eddlewood Buildings, Hamilton ; 
Assisiant .Secretary and Treasurer, Wm. Lindsay, Woodhead, 
Ncilsland. Special features of Club— To keep ever green the 
memory of Scotia"s greatest son, and disseminate the principles he 
strove to inculcate. 

No. 176— RENFREW Burns Club. Federated 28th December, 1908. 
President, A. Shearer, The Holmstead, Renfrew ; Vice-president, 
I). K. Michie, Deanside, Renfrew ; Secretaiy, L. Buchanan, The 
Sheiling, Renfrew. 

Nu 177 — PRESTVVICK Burns Club. Instituted 1902. Federated 1908. 
Place of meeting. Royal Hotel. President, Councillor T. S, 
Fleming, Berelands Road, Prestwick ; Vice-president, Walter 
.Jarvie, Roval Hotel, I'restwick ; Secretary, Alexander Smith, 
Munton, Prestwick, Committee — ex-Bailie Cochrane. Special 
features of Club — The celebration of the anniversary of the Poet's 
l)irth, and the cultivation of a knowledge of the Poet's works and 
Scottish literature generally. 

No. 1 78— KILMARNOCK Begbie's Burns Club. Instituted 20lh Jan., 1909. 
Federated 20th January, 1909. Place of meeting, Begbie's_ Inn. 
President, Wm. Jolinston, John Finnic Street ; Vice-president, 
John Douglas, artist, King Street ; Secretary, David Edgar, 
Technical School, Kilmarnock. 


No. 179 -DAILLV Jolly Bei;gais Burns Club. Insliluled 22nd January, 
1909. Federated 22nd Tan uary, 1909. Place of meeting, King's 
Arms Hoiel. President, Robt. Smith, SchooUiouse, Dailly ; 
\'ice-president, Robt. Cook, VVoodside Cottage, Dailly. Secretary, 
Samuel M'Bride, Dalquharran, by Maybole. Committee — 
Thomas Dykes, Samuel M'Blain, and Ilugii M'Culloch. Special 
feature of Club -Celebration of the Poet's birthday. 

No. 180 GLASGOW TOLLCROSS Burns Club. Instituted 1908. 
Federated 1908. Place and time of meeting, Hilliar's Rooms, 
Main Street, 2nd Thursday, S p.m. President, John Watson, 24 
St. Vincent Place, Glasgow ; \'ice-president. Jas. Petrie, Daraar, 
Hamilton Drive, Shettleston ; Secretary, Rol)ert .Manson, 7 Rock- 
don Gardens, Tollcross ; Treasurer, Walter Newton, 706 Main 
Street, Tollcross. Special features of Club— Promote the study of 
Burns's works. 

No. 181— GLASGOW Primrose Burns Club. Instituted 1901. Federated 
1909. IMace and date of meeting, Alexandra Hotel, January 
24lh. President, John H. Dennistoun. 2 Woodlands, Langside, 
Glasgow ; Vice-president, John L. Robertson, 14 Rowallan 
Gardens, Partick ; Secretary, George R. Hunter. 30 Ronald 
Street, Glasgow ; e.\-Presidents, Thomas Muir, 58 Holmhead 
Street, and [ohn Russell, 18 Paul Street, Gl.isgow ; Treasurer, 
Matthew Reid, 82 Dundas Street, Glasgow. Special features of 
Club — Musical evenings with Scotch readings, and anniversary 
dinner to celebrate the Poet's birthday. 

No. i8j STANE (Sholts) Mos^giel Burns Club. Instituted 3rd February, 
1908. P'edcrated 27th February, 1909. Place of meeting, Stane 
Hotel. President, .Mr Andrew Barrie, Southdyke Farm, Shotts ; 
Vice-president, Mr William Cairns, Torbothie, Stane, Shotts ; 
Secretary, Mr Alex. Walker, i Charlotte Street, Stane, Shotts ; 
Treasurer, Mr Archd. Williams. 19 Manse Road, Stane, Shotts. 
Special features of Club -- Study of Scottish song and Poet's 
works; papers and debate; celebration of Hallowe'en festival 
and birthday anniversary. 

No. 183— LONDONDERRY Burns Club and Caledonian Society. Fede- 
rated loth June, 1909. Place and date of meeting, Gowdie's 
Hotel, Candlemas, Whitsuntide, Lammas, and Martinmas. 
President, D. C. Hogg, F^sq., J. P., Victoria Park; Vice-president, 
Thos. D. Graham, 55 Strand Road ; Secretary, Jas. C. Scrimgeour, 
3 Sunnyside Terrace ; Treasurer, John Harley, 136 Bishop Street, 
bpeci.d features of Club — The objects of the Society shall be to 
cherish the memory of Burns ; to study his works ; to discuss 
pnets and poetry in general ; to endeavour by these means, or in 
such other manner as may be approved, to cultivate a closer social 
union amongst all classes of Scotsmen and other sympathisers 
with the objects of the Club in Londonderry and neighbourhood ; 
10 provide a fund, by annual sub.scription and entry fees, whereby 
Scotsmen in poor and nece.ssitous circumstances may be relieved ; 
and to defray working expenses. 

No. 184— BLAIRAD.\M Shanter Burns Club. Instituted 21st August, 
1907. Federated 28th August, 1909. Place and date of meeting, 
Blairadam Tavern, Kelty, on Friday.s, at 7 p.m. President, [ohn 
Ramsay, Swanley Cottage, Kelty; Vice-president, James Nelson, 


Benarly View Collages, Kelty ; Seci-etary, George Ireland, Old 
Office Road, Kelly ; Treasurer, Tiiomas Hunter. Commitlee — 
R. Storrar, W. Clark, Thos. Sneddon, W. Fyfe, and T. Pryde. 
Special features of Club— Smoking concerts, recitations, songs, and 
readings ; dominoes, draughts. 

No. 185— BURTON Burns Club. Instituted December, 1908. Federated 
November iQlh, 1909. President, John T. C. Eadie, J. P., 
Newlon-Solney, Burton-on-Trent ; Vice-president, David Burrell, 
Shoinall Villa, Shotnall Road ; Scc7-etary, Geo. Rae, 85 Belvedere 
Road, Burton-on-Trent. Commitlee — R. N. Roljertson, Dr 
Docherty, J. P.. Palerson, J. J- Plenderson, J- P- M'Intyre, W. 
Marshall, A. Green, A. F. M'Vicar, A. Skinner, J. B. Johnston, 
li. F. Miller, J. P. Miller. Special features of Club — To foster a 
love for our National Poet in the hearts of all Scotsmen in the 

No. 1S6— KILMARNOCK Glencairn Burns Club. Instituted ijlh 
November, 1909. Federated ajih November, 1909. Place and 
time of meeting, Bridge Inn, Robertson Place, 2nd Friday of 
month, at 8 p.m. Hon. President, John Ferguson, Bridge Inn, 
Kilmarnock ; Hon. Vice-piesidents, Adam Mackay, Dundonald 
Road, and James Wilson, Wallace Street ; President, James 
Gilmour, Arbuckle Street, Kilmarnock ; Vice-president, Robert 
Ritchie, 18 Richardland Road, Kilmain(jck ; Secretary, William 
Anderson, 14 Richardland Road, Kilmarnock. 

No. 187— GALASHIELS Burns Club. Instituted 1907. F'ederaled 1909. 
Time of meeting, 25lh January. President, Alexander L. Brown, 
Gallahill, Galashiels; Vice-presidents, A. J. Craig, H. S. Murray, 
George Sutherland ; Secretarv, Philip SuUey, F.S.A., Galashiels ; 
Treasurer, Hugh Murray, Gal isliiels. Special features of Club — 
School competitions in songs and recitations. 

No. 188— DUNS Working Men's Club. Instituted 1902. Federated 1910. 
Place and date of meeting. Duns, on 25th January. President, 
Thomas Brackenridge, jeweller, Duns ; Vice-president, John 
F'oreman, Cumledge, Duns ; Secietary, Robert Cameron, South 
Street, Duns. Special features of Club — Social evenings, harmony, 

No. 189— CLYDEBANK Barns o' Clyde Burns Club. Instituted 1894. 
Federated 2nd March, 1910. Place and time of meeting. The 
Restaurant, Clydebank, September to April, Wednesday end of 
each month. President, John Hogg, Magistrate, 257 Glasgow 
Road, Clydebank ; Vice-president, Lawrence Watt, 35 Taylor 
Street, Whitecrook, Clydebank ; Secietary. David Cargill, 36 
Hillview Terrace, Dumbarton Road, Clydebank. 

No. 190— PORT-GLASGOW Burns Club. Instituted January, 1910. 
Federated 5th April, 1910. Place and date of meeting. Co- 
operative Hall, Princes Street, on 1st Friday in month, September 
to April, at 7.45 p.m. President, William M'Elwee, 7 Clyde 
Street, Port-Glasgow ; Vice-president, William Gilchrist, 6 Spring- 
hill, Port-Glasgow ; Secretary, James Hicks, junr., 6 Octavia 
Street, Port-Glasgow ; Treasurer, John C. Pearson, Flemington, 
High-holm, Port-Glasgow. Special features of Club — To cherish 
the name of Robert Burns, to study and foster a love for his writ- 
ings, and generally to promote good-fellowship. 

No. 191— MOORI'ARK HurnsClul), Kcnlreu. Insiiiukd igOcS. IcclL-iaicd 
1910. Place of meeling, various. I're.siiient, Mallliew Holmes, 
Paisley Road, Renfrew ; \'ice-president. Wm. P'ernie, Sandy 
Road, Renfrew ; Secreta/y, El.enezer Inglis, Broughallan Gardens, 
Sandy Road, Renfrew. ConiniiUee — Hailie Milliken, Bailie 
Ferguson, J. P., Councillor I'alon, James Clark, and John 
M'Gregor, sen. Special features of Club — Lectures, concerts ; 
to encourage the study of Kurns's works by competition amongst 
children in Moorpark Public School. 

No. 192— THE AVRSIlIRE ASSOCIATION of Federated Burns Clubs. 
Instituted 190S. Federated 1910. Place of meeting, quarterly, 
at various places throughout the county. I^resident, Andrew 
Sinclair, 65 M'LelJan I)ri\e, Kilmarnock ; Vice-president, e.x- 
Bailie M'Ciraw, Wallacehill, Riccarton ; Secretary, Wm. Lennox, 
II Nursery Avenue, Kilmarnock ; Treasurer, Archd. Laird. 
Committee — II. Campbell (Cumnock), I). Donnelly (Bellfield), 
D. Burns (Glencairn), James Moir (Riccarton), William Hall 
(Auchinleck), and Wm. Adams (Atdrossan). Special features of 
Club— To further the interests of the Burns Club by promoting 
closer union between the Clubs in the county, and to render all 
possible assistance to the work of the Federation. 

No. I9J-RUTHERGLEN Jolly Beggars Burns Club. Instituted 3151 
August, 1910. Federated nth November, 1910. Place of meet- 
ing, 72 Main Street. President, Jf)hn Bailey, 7}, High Sheet, 
Rutherglen ; Vice-president, Arch. Gilchrist, 51 High Street, 
Rutherglen ; Secre/ary, John .Skelley, 72a Main Street, Ruther- 
glen. Special features of Club — The annual celebration of the 
birth of Kobert Burns, occasional re-union, tSic. 

No. 194— MIDDLEBIE Burns Club. Instituted 1909. Federated nth 
Novendier, 1910. Place and time of meeting, Kirllebridge, 
Irving Arms Hotel, monthly. President, Mr John Nelson, Fern- 
grove, Eaglesfield ; Vice-presidents, J. Scott, Geo. Moffat, ^^'m. 
Rae, and James Urquhan ; Secretary atia 'Jreasiner, Walter A. 
Mather, Uonkins House, Kirtlebridge, Ecclefechan ; Assistant 
Secretary, William C. Ferguson. Special features of Club — Social 
and literary. 

No. 195 — BLUE BELL Burns Club, Siiiiemoor. Instituted November, 
1906. J ederaied I4ih November, 1910. Place and date of meet- 
ing. Blue Bell Hotel, monthly, commencing 3rd September, 1910. 
President, John \Vilscii, senr. , 11 Duke Street, Shiremoor, 
Newcastle-on-Tyne ; Vice-president, John Marshall, C. Pit 
Cottages, Backworth, Newcastle-on-Tyne ; Secretary, James Wil- 
son, 20 Percy Street, Shiremoor, Newcastleon-Tyne ; Treasurer, 
[os. Watson. Committee — Robert Fyfe, Wm. Blewitt, 1. Cun- 
ningham, Wm. Mordue, D. Chipperfield, G. Fyfe, and Jas. Waters. 

No. 196— MID-ARGVLL Burns Club. Instituted inh Jaiiuai\-. irog. 
Federated 27th December, 1910. Place of meeting. Royal Hotel, 
Ardrishaig. President, A. Y. Paul, .Argyll Hotel, Lochgilphead ; 
Vice-president, Kobert I- inlay, Koyal Hotel, Aidrishaig ; 
Secretary ana Treasrirer, Andrew V. Roy, Tigh-an-Eas, .\rilri- 
shaig. Committee — Richard Mincher, J. M. Montgomerie, A. 
MD. Ltckie, Jas. M'Bain, jun., and John M'Alisier. Special 
features of the Club — Celebration of the Poet's birthday. 


iiNS ftiOilftt/ 
> 8- nV- ^ 




No. XXI. 
January, 1912. 







(R/^/yZ-S reseri/'«d) 



A Sketch of Scottish Literature from the EarHest Times 

— Wm. M'llwraith ...... 5 

Burns on Peace and War — Andrew M'Callum - - 33 

The Home Life of Burns — John M. Murdoch - - 52 

Burns and " TuUochgorum " — J. M. Murdoch - - 58 

Woman's Praise of Burns — A. C. White - - 67 

The PoHtics of Burns — Edward Pinnington - - - 75 

Burns and Boswell— ^. J. S. - - - - - 96 

The Scottish Exhibition 103 

Burns and Jamaica — J . R. - - - - - - 107 

Reviews ...-..--. 109 

Ckib Notes --------- 112 

Notes and Queries - 129 

Annual Meeting of Federation ----- 148 

Club Directory - - - 157 


The increasing interest taken ni the Chronicle by Burns Clubs 
ever;y^where is a great encouragement to all concerned in its 
publication. While its circulation amongst the general public 
is still well maintained, it must ever be kept in view that its 
continued success depends primarily on the support it receives 
from those to whom it specially appeals as the only official 
organ of the Burns Cult in existence. 

To all who have assisted in this issue the Editor presents 
his most grateful thanks. 


Benrig, Kilmaurs, 

December 25th, 1911. 




THIS sketch of .Scottish literature and Scottish \\riters 
might have conchided with the precefliiig chapter, 
for, with the exception of Alexander Wilson and Carolina 
Oliphant, it contains no writer of any extraordinary merit. 
It certainly contains no epoch writer who has influenced 
the destinies of the national literature in any other direction 
than that in which the tendency had already been determined . 
By itself considered, the rise and growth of Scottish literature 
is almost as remarkable a historical phenomenon as the rise 
and growth of Scottish philosophy, which has already been 
noticed in the course of this sketch. Like Scottish philo- 
sophy, too, in the process of national development it has not 
been without influence on British literature in general. The 
principal distinction between the two, however, is that 
Scottish philosophy has made itself felt in a more marked 
degree beyond the confines of Great Britain ; but without 
further generalisation I shall proceed to deal with the few- 
remaining writers and poetasters who followed in the wake 
of Burns. 

One of the first names which falls to be mentioned 
here is that of Gavin Turnbull. The exact date of his birth 
and death cannot be given, but he first became known to the 

|»iil)li as an aiithoi- in 17SS. \\v was tlie son of a dycstt'i' 
tr.Mii Hawick, and was hoi'n at Kilmarnock. wIutc he was 
appi'cnt iced to tlic trade of a carpet wcaxci'. Fi'oin want 
oF inclination rather than capacity he does not seem to liave 
become proficient in his lia(h'. and rathei' tlian exert himself 
tn inipi'oxc his position, he h\('d in the meanest fasliion. 
without fui'uiture or any (h)mestic comfoi'ts. content to squat 
on a bed of .straw . He was not naturally idle, for he had a 
large store of intellectual energy, but spent too much time 
in writing xcrst's. and studying and reciting Shakespeare, 
A\hich ultimately induced a passion for the stage. In course 
of time he moved with the rest of his family from Kilmarnock 
to Glasgow, wheic. in 1788, he published a volume of ])oetical 
essays, which has long disappeared past recall. 

If rei)ort is correct, the loss may be deemed a misfortujie, 
for the work had the reputation of being of more than ordinary 
merit. It is not certain whether Turnbull came to realise 
that a casual litterateur in anything but the first ranks was 
but a lean and hiaigr}- profession, but it ended by his going 
on the stage to disport himself behind the footlights. Thus 
it was in the character of a comedian when a resident in Dum- 
fries that he became acquainted with the poet Burns, who 
was not ashamed to claim him as a brother bard. ]More- 
over, Burns sent several of Turnbull's unpublished songs 
to Thomson "s collection, which says much for their merit. 
In 17!)4 he published a small i^amphlet of additional ])oems 
bearing the title (lavin Turnlndl, " Comedian.'' He is 
mentioned in Campbell's History of Scottish Poetry, published 
in 1798. He subsequently went to America, where he is 
believed to have died. At anyrate nothing further \\as heard 
of him, either in literature or in connection with the stage. 

The impression conveyed by his poem entitled " May," 
is the spontaneity with \\hich he could command the muse, 
and al.'^o his keen appreciation of natinc. as the following 
lines will show : — 

"A' nature, blooming, charms the view — 
The greensward earth, and welkin blue. 
The bent refreshed wi' morning dew, 

And spreading thorn, 
Gay vernal flowers of motley hue, 

The braes adorn. 

Now is the time for those who love 

To woo the Muses in the grove. 

Or wi' the Nymph, sweet fancy rove 

Her flowery way ; 
Then come, ye tunefu' swains, and prove 

The joys of May." 

Again, his joyous song entitled " Xancy " conveys 
-the idea of one who could be a Merry- Andrew, and on occasion 
couid sing, dance, hoogh, and snap his thumbs in the most 
hilarious fashion ; but the versification of his poem entitled 
" Genius " scarcely appears congenial to his muse, and reveals 
a sedateness of thought and reflection rather than an inspired 
pen. About two years previous to the publication of Turn- 
bull's volume appeared a poem of rural description entitled 
" The Har'st Rig," the author of which is unknown. It 
is generally believed that it is from the same pen as • The 
Farmer's Ha'," which was ixiblished some twelve years 
before, and which purports to have been written by an 
Aberdeen student. Genius cannot be claimed for '^ The Har'st 
Rig " by any means — its value rather consists in that it is 
a most realistic description of a Scots harvest field in the 
eighteenth century, with a graphic characterisation of the 
gleaners, both Highland and Lowland. The Doric employed 
is quaint, yet expressive and is frequently quoted in 
Jamiesoris Dictionary as a forcible example of the Scots 

Another of the same coterie of small poets who with 
Burns contiibuted to Johnson's Scots Musical Museum 
was John Hamilton, 1761-1814. In his own day he 
was better known as a music -seller in Bridge Street, Edin- 
burgh, but he was a composer of Scots airs of some 
merit, and \\rote several fine songs some of w^hich are 

still popiilai-. {)\\v of his w ell i^iiow ii acliicx cmcnls is liis 
addition of two stair/.as to Burns's soiiu ■ Of a" the Airts the 
Wind can\\. " which ar(> so well executed tiiat they 
were hi'heved to lie tlu> work of iJiinis liiiuself to a conipai-a- 
ti\-elv recent date. It is also to his cicdit that his popular 
song. "" I'p in the Mornin" Karl\ ." was an inipro\-ement 
on l^urnss song on the same subject. It is believed, however, 
that the tune of this song is of more ancient date, and was 
wrought into a catch. " I'se gae with thee, my Peggy," which 
Mas apparently first published in a collection by John Hinton 
in 1().")2. It was also made to ser\e the base of a birthday 
song l)y Henry Pni'cell. the famous H'nglish nuisician, for 
the consort of William 111. (l()i»2). and was adopted by ik\y 
for one of the songs in his "" Beggars Opera." Hamilton 
was also the author of several musical pieces, among which 
is ■■ Miss Forbes' Farewell to Banff." 

In Andrew Scott we have a minor poet of a more robust 
fibre, though with a less delicate touch, than Hamilton. 
He was l)orn in 1757. at Bowden Village. 
"^ nST-lSfi."' Roxburghshire, an.d I)elonged to the i)easant 
class. After he had reached man's estate 
he left his birthplace and its rustic scenes behind the Eldon 
Hills, and entered the military profession, and served as a 
private soldier through five campaigns of the American War. 
He was witli the ai-niy under Cornwallis which surrendered 
at Yorktouii. \'irginia. When a young herdladdie a copy 
of Ramsay's " Gentle 8he])herd " fell into his possession. 
and kindled the spark of poetic fire, which kept aglow till 
a late period of liis life. While in the army he entertained 
his comrades on many occasions by singing them songs of 
his own cfmi))osition, amongst which were, " Betsy Rosoe, " 
" The old Oak Tree." and othei's. He subsequently returned 
to his nati\e parish, whei'e he die(l a farin-laljourer, to which 
occupation had been added the ollice of church beadle. When 
neai-ly fifty years of a<;e. he |nl)lisli((l at Edinburgh. Kelso. 

and Jedburgh, five collections of his poetry, which were of 
sufficient merit to attract the attention of Sir Walter Scott, 
Lockhart, and others of the Edinbui'gh litterati of that period. 
Although fortune does not seem to have cheered him in 
the course of his long and adventurous career, he maintained 
a genial optimism to the last, and his poem entitled " Riu'al 
Content," or " The Muirland Farmer," is most likely a re- 
flection of his humble tastes and unambitious nature. At 
all events, the following lines convey his idea of happiness 
and the simple life : — 

" My biggin' stands sweet on this south slopin' hill. 
And the sun shines sae bonnily beamin' on't, 
And past my door trots a clear prattlin' rill, 

Frae the loch where the wild ducks are swimmin" on't. 

And on its green banks, on the gay simmer days, 

My wife trips barefit, ableachin' her elaes, 
And on the dear creature wi' rapture I gaze. 

While I whistle and sing at the pleughin' o't." 

While Andrew Scott was induced to tune his lyre by 
reading the " Gentle Shepherd," Andrew Shirrefs endeavoured 

to drink more deeply at the same fountahi. 
^"n(52-S''^**' --Although born at Aberdeen, 1762. some 

seventy-six years later than Ramsay's time, 
he made strenuous efforts to emulate the older poet 
by writing a pastoral play also. This play was entitled 
'■ Jemie and Bess," in which, like the " Gentle Shepherd." 
th characters are rustic, and the author displays much 
familiarity with that mode of life. It was played several 
times in Aberdeen and once at Edinburgh but it does not 
appear to have made a great impression. Like most imita- 
tions, it was inferior to its model, though merit of a kind 
must be allowed it. The poet evidently belongeid to a 
family of some position and intellectual calibre, but owing 
to a physical infirmity he engaged in the trade of a book- 
seller, and his shop became, like that of Ramsay's in 
Edinburgh, a literary rendezvous for authors, poets, and 


ItniMs of l)()(>l\s. Sliii'icfs was not void of ambition iiot- 
Avithstandinu liis intirniity, for in addition to writing 
poetry he .started a newspaper wliich was destined speedily 
to come to grief, and for sonic years hv carried on the 
Cdhf/niii'iH M(i(/(iziii(' with a moderate degree of success. 
On ihc si()|)|)a,i:c of the ('dlcdonidn Magazine he removed to 
Kdinliuruh. where in 171)0 he jjnhlishe'd a volume of poems 
chiefly in the Scottish <lial(>ct. The most andiitious in the 
collection is his pastoral " .Jcmic and Bess," but his most 
])oi)ular and best-known })iecc is his song. " A Cogie o' Yill." 
After a residence of eight years in Edinburgh he went to 
London in 1798, but unfortunately his star was soon in the 
descendant, and after a struggle of a little over two years, 
duration with fickle fortune, he died at the comparatively 
early age of forty-eight. 

When Andrew Shirrefs started the Caledonian. Magazine 

one of his poetical contributors was William Beattie. known as 

the Heckler Poet, obviously because he was 

^^'''n62-?8f6^'''' ^ comber of flax by trade and a caustic wit to 

boot. Beattie was born at Aberdeen, 1762, 

and was a racy and talented rhymster, who could portray 

homely scenes with a facile pen. By trade, as we have already 

stated, he was a flax-dresser operative in a factory near his 

own house in the flallowgate. Vi^w particulars are known 

of him. c.\cc])t that he was a diunken, rollicking carle, who- 

believed that most of the ills which flesh is heir to could be 

cured by a dram. Indeed, his attitude to life could be well 

summed up in two lines of Hurns's famous P>acchanalian 


The cock may craw, the day may daw, 
And av we'll taste the barley bree.'' 

Beattie sent a rhymed epistle to the first issue of the 
Caledonian Magazine, enclosing a poem on ''' Mortalit}^" and 
followed it up with the " Winter'.s Night," which is perhaps 
his most inijjorfanl jtocni. and which appeal's to have been 


suggested by '' The Farmer's Ha'," written upwards of 
twent}^ years before. On the dawn of the new century, 
1801, Beattie published a small collection of his poems at 
Aberdeen, under the title of Fruits of Time Parings, which 
has been several times reprinted. This volume contains 
'■ The Winter's Night," " The Yule Feast," and " The Ale- 
wife Coaxing her Customers," the latter of which abounds 
with witty and sarcastic allusions. All the poems give 
graphic touches of rural life, \\hich are mostly happy and 
ah\ays realistic. 

In leaving Beattie, who should not be taken too seriously, 
we pass to Alexander Wilson, an almost forgotten and much 
neglected author. Yet he was a man who 
^'^^«;^^|j;(;j^Jj^^°"' played many parts, and was scarcely less 
interestuig as a man than he was as an 
author. When he writes verse he has recourse to the 
I'hymed couplet of Alexander Pope, by whom he was 
evidently impressed, nor is it inappropriate to his 
vigorous mind and graphi descriptive powers, although he 
lacks the artistic balance of Pope. Wilson was born 
at Paisley, July 6th, 1766. Some say he was the 
son of a small distiller, others that he was the son of a weaver, 
the latter of which is the more probable. His parents 
intended that he should enter the Church, but for some reason 
or other he was apprenticed to the weaving trade when he 
was thirteen years of age. While a weaver's apprentice 
he manifested a love of books, of writing verses, and study i.g 
nature, for which the sedentary occuf)ation of a weaver was 
unfavourable. His roving disposition and love of freedom 
rose in rebellion, and he flung off the fetters of the loom by 
setting up as a pedlar, an occupation he seems to have followed 
for three years. Along with his other articles of merchandise 
he hawked copies of the first volume of his poems, published 
in 1789 ; and from his Journal, published in September or 
the same year, we get a glimpse of his experiences in pushin 


till' Mill' ot liis wairs aiiionu tlir I'ouiitrv folks, and at the 
village fairs, of which he cdiild usually src thccoiuic side. 
Tudocd. it is diilicull to uiidnstand how \\v could have borne 
uch taunts and rchut'fs had it not l)ern that they a])pealed 
to the eoinic element of his nature— a most essential attribute 
in the character of a tramp. 

Many of Wilson's poems are on themes unworthy of his 
talents, which ai)})ear to have been dashed off with a freedom 
indicative of the rollickiuif blade who cannot wait upon fine 
sentinienT or indulge in artistic construction. .Mthouiih 
this feature was pi-cdoniinant in early life, he showcil in his 
later years how tenacious and persistent he could be when 
he hit upon his real vocation. Many of his poems at the 
period referred to display a vivacity and jiower of diction 
which only required judicious guidance ; but like Aurora's 
steeds harnessed to the dawn without a charioteer, he dashed 
heedlessly on, bearing down every obstacle in his track. 
Lyrical gifts \\c cannot claim for W'ilson, for in the main 
his songs are poor, but he had a deep insight into nature and 
a wealth of descriptive power far beyond the common ; 
though he is freiiuently coarse, and rarely rises to a refined 
and delicate pathos. A few lines from his verses on a thunder- 
storm will convey an ic'ea of his vigorous descriptive ])owers — 

" Two sick'ning month.s had thus roird joyless by. 
While heat reign'd tyrant from the vaulted sky. 
Again the sun rose in the flaming east, 
And pour"d his rays o'er earth and ocean's breast : 
But ere yon high Meridian he had gain'd. 
Surrounding elouds his dark'niii^ \ isML.'i' siaiii'd, 
Clouds j^il'd on clouds, in dismal Imil' ;irr;iy. 
.Swell from the south, and blot tin- l.n.' (it day ; 
Oer the black sky a threatning horror spreads. 
The brooks brawl hoar.ser from their distant beds ; 
The coming storm the woodland natives view. 
Stalk to the caves, or seek the shelteriuy xcu : 
'J'here pensive droop, and eye the streiimiii).' rain. 
While lightning sweeps, and thunder shakes the plain."' 

in further illustr.ition of the author's descriptive realism, 
we give a quotation fi-om his ))ocm entitled " The Suicide " — 


" ' Curst be the lioiir that to existejice brought 
Me, wretched me ! to war with endless woe ; 
Curst be the wretch ! and curst the barb'rou.s thought 
That made me stretch the bleeding beauty low ! 
Still from her breast the purple torrents flow, 
Still, still I hear her loud for mercy crave — 
See — hark ! the groans — alas ! some pity shew ! 
For love for heav'n ! for mercy's sake ! oh save ! 
No ! see her mangled corse float o'er the midnight wave. 

earth ! O darkness ! hide her from my sight ; 
Shall hell, shall furies rack me ere I die ? 

No ! this shall sink me in eternal night. 

To meet those torments that I ne'er can fly : 

Ye yelling fiends ! that now around me hie, 

Exult and triumph in the accursed deed ; 

Soon in your flaming gulphs ye shall me spy — 

Despair ! attend, the gloomy way to lead ; 

For what I now endure no hell can e'er exceed,' 

He said ! - and gazing furiously round, 
Plung'd in his heart the dagger's deadly blade ; 
Deep, deep he groan'd : and reeling to the ground, 

1 rushed to rescue thro' th' entangling shade ; 
Flat on the mossy sod I found him laid, 
And oft I call'd, and wept, and trembled sore. 
But life was fled — too late, all huinan aid ; 
And while his grasp the shining dagger bore. 

His lifeless head lay sunk in blood and clotted gore." 

Besides having- a facile pen for the description of the 
a\\ful and the liorrible, Wilson had a merry wit, which he 
could command when occasion favoured its exercise. In 
the course of several of his other poems, as well as in 
his Journal, he makes many witty allusions to his experi- 
ence as a pedlar, but the follo\\ing lines are perhaps among 
the most farcical — 

" Sae up the biu-n wi' glee I gade, 
An" down aboon some heather. 
Salt on the brae my pack I laid. 

Till twa-three lumps I'd gather ; 
But wae-be-till't, had I foreseen 

Things were to turn sae doolfu", 
1 ne'er had waded there sae keen, 
Tho' sure to fin a shoolfu' 
An mair that day. 

As thro" the stream wi' loutin' back 
Thrang stanes an' sand I threw out, 

A tup, wha won'ert at my pack, 
Cam' doon to take a view o"t, 

A l,"lluM--lcn-tli. \u' hack did -ar, 

An" i-jiin" \vi' .sic n dasb. 
Tliat lijd(>-salo Inirlan" down tlic 1 rao 

It hlMtt(>r"( \vi" a l)lasli 

r th.- bun, day. 

'I'lio' carllujuakcs, hail, an' tliiurci-.s blaze 

Had a" at ance surronndet. 
I wudna glowrt wi" sic amaze, 

Xor been lia'f sae confoiindet ! 
Wi" waefu heart, before it sank, 

I haul't it out a" clashing. 
And now they're bleacliing on the Ijank, 

.\ melancholy washing 
To me this day." 

The freedom of style and (•onii)t)siti()ii of these Hues 
is a fair illustration of the clever fidl-blooded rhymster of 
the eighteenth century Scot, who seldom posed as a philoso- 
pher in the clonds. l)tit ratliei' foinid interest in common 
things, and to the country-hrf d rustic the fidelity of the 
picture is inimitable. 

His poem entitled the "' Laurel Di.sputed."' in which he 
deals with the relative cla'ms (f the jjoetry of Allan Ramsay 
and Robert Fergusson, is full of dry humour, and shows a fer- 
tility of literary knowledge which does much credit to his 
industry. This poem he first delivered in the character of 
a clown in the Pantheon at Edinburgh in April 14th, 1791. 
In addition to its literary consl ruction and s])ontaneoi:s 
vitteranee. it manifests a faniilini-ity with the peasant life of 
Scotland which will picscrvc it from extinction. The ])oem 
which Ix'st preserves his memory, howcxcr. is "' Watty and 
]\Iei:." which was first ])ublish('d anonymousl\- in 17i>2, and 
was for seme time ascribed to l)urns. with whom Wilson 
had become acf|uainted. 'I his poem is much better known 
than from which i ha\c (jiioted. and it has always been 
a favf)urite on account of its broad hiiiiKnn- and realistic 
truth. As a ])rodu(;tion. it is unpolishe(l and homespun, 
and its versification is a clumsy four-lined measure not well 
adapted for the theme. Iti religion and politics Wilson was 
nmcli in adxance of those with whom he came in contact. 


especially with regard to the latter, and soon after the publica- 
tion of " Watty and Meg " he became involved in the dis- 
putes of the weaving trade in Paisley, in which he engaged 
with all the ardour and fearless courage of a revolutionary. 
For mercilessly lampooning some of the sweating masters 
of the weaving craft, he Avas prosecuted and sent to jail in 
Paisley, in addition to which he was compelled to burn his 
productions on the subject with his own hands at the Town 
Cross. A man of this type prefers to rule rather than be 
ruled, and he chafed under the despotism of that law and 
authority which commanded him to obey. Humiliated 
and cast down in spirit in consequence, he sailed to 
America, friendless and alone, with but a few shillings 
of borrowed money in his pocket. Full of courage and re- 
solution , however, he first of all engaged himself to a copper- 
plate printer in Philadelphia, subsequently with a weaver, 
and then as a 1 ravelling pedlar in New Jersey, where the 
gay plumage of the birds attracted his attention. Ever 
having a keen eye for nature, as both his poetry and 
prose writings testify, it only required opportunity for 
development. He abandoned his occupation of a pedestrian 
merchant, and took up school teaching in Pensylvania. 
from which he travelled 800 miles to visit a nephew in 
New York. In the capacity of school teacher he made the 
acquaintance of William Bettram, \\ho was much interested 
in subjects of a naturalist character — among other things 
ornithology — and by contact with him Wilson was stimulated 
afresh to natural studies. So interested in the subject did 
he become that he was induced to take lessons in drawing, 
colouring, and etching, till he became remarkably proficient 
in the sketching of birds. Buoyed up with hopes of success, 
he was encouraged to make a collection of Amei-ican birds, 
a subject which had not yet claimed the special attention of 
any writer on natural history. With the object of exploring 
the coun']'y and making observations, he travelled to Niagara 


Falls hy a circuitous loutc. walkiiiff sonic 12t»(l miles. 
While a1 Niauara he wrote a poem called "'The Foresters," 
for ill his \arious ramhies literature ever held a supreme 
])lacc ill his mind. In isoii \\v was cm|)loyc(l as a writer 
<in tlu- Aniericaii edition of I'crs'.s Encydopcetlia, but by this 
time the study of iiiids and l)ird-life had become a habit 
of mind with him. and he induced the publisher of the Encylo- 
jiterh'a to bring out a woik on American ornithology. The 
first volume was prodiiecil in 1808, in a costly and elaborate 
style, and two \ears afterwards the second volume was issued. 
In the course of the year following Wilson made a canoe 
voyage down the Ohio River. 72() miles ; the i-i\er which the 
great Audubon afterwards na\igated on a similar mission, 
viz., to add to his famous coloured collection of birds. In 
1813 the se\enth volume of Wilson's important work was 
published, the year in which he died. His death is said to 
have been hastened by his eager pursuit of a rare specimen 
of bird he had long sought. In order to keep in view the 
object of his pursuit he swam across a river, and thus caught 
cold, which ended fatally on August 23rd. ISi3. when he had 
nearly completed his magnum opus. 

The eighth and ninth volumes were ])ul)lished after his 
<lcath. with a memoir by Old. his assistant. The work was 
continued by Charles Lucien Bonaparte in four volumes, 
and has since been reprinted in various forms. It was greatly 
to the credit of Wilson that he was the first to study American 
birds in theii- iiati\c haunts, and it must be admitted that his 
descriptions are rcmarkal)le for their terseness and fidelity. 
The popular belief is that his achievements in this branch 
of natural science stimulated John James Audubon, who 
carried the subject of American ornithology to still greater 
perfection in his monumental work. The ])rospectus of 
Audubon's American Bir'Is was issued in 1827, and the publi- 
cation of the complete work occupied some ten years. A edition of this work is now worth several In-ndred pounds, 

but the debt which Audubon owed to the hund)le pedlar 
from Paisley cannot now be accurately estimated. Never- 
theless, Wilson's services to this branch of natural science 
and his contributions to the poetical literature of his native 
land were not publicly recognised in his birthplace till some 
sixty years after his death, when a monument was 
erected in his native town of Paisley in 1874. Collected 
editions of Wilson's poems were published at Edinburgh in 
1791. at Paisley in 1816, and at Belfast in 1845. but the most 
complete edition is that edited by the Rev. A. B. Grossart, 
published at Paisley in 1876. His poems, in addition to 
being vivid and vigorous, bear the stamp of individuality, 
frequently a rare humour, and are not so well known as they 
deserve to be. 

In Carolina Oliphant. who subsequently became Baroness 

Nairne, we have a writer whose literary claims are wholly 

different from those of Alexander Wilson. 

Carolina Oliphant, ^^ alreadv stated. Wilson had small claim 

1 / oo-lo4 J. 

to the lyrical gift, while Lady Xairne possessed 
it in a supreme degree. 

The Flower of Strathearn, as she was designated because 
of her beauty and natural charm of manner, was born at Gask 
seven years after the birth of Robert Burns and five before 
that of Sir Walter Scott. The auld house of Gask, in Perth- 
shire, was inherited by Larence Oliphant, the father of our 
authoress, at the death of her grandfather, and he became 
the representative of the old family of the Oliphants. In 
the north country the family was well known and respected. 
One of the most pronounced characteristics of the Oli- 
phants was that they were Jacobites of the most ardent and 
aggressive type. The Laird, Carolina's father, had taken 
part in the Rebellion of 1745, and her grandfather in that of 
1715. Both men had been exiled and suffered much in 
consequence, and not till a few years before the birth of our 
authoress were thev allowed to return to their neglected 


•estates. 'I'o tlie vviy last they maintained their .laeoliite 
})riiiei|)lcs. and wonid acUnow ledue no l\in<i; but "the one 
over the watir. ' for whom ihey ni^litiy prayed, and cherished 
tlieir recollections of liiiii in the household with the most 
fervent devotion. Before Carolina saw the light, the svi])reme 
desh-e of the parents was that the little Oliphant which was 
expected shoiihl turn out to he a \)oy so that he might be 
named ( harles. and she used to say her parents had never 
forgiven her for having l)een born a girl. Hope «'as only 
deferred, however, for two boys were subse(|uently born, 
and for the mere accident of birth the young A\oman who was 
to justify her existence* in the world as a gifted songstress 
was freely forgiven. In the atmosphere of Gask House, 
with its Jacobite stories and Highland legends, our authoress 
Avas born and reared. \\'hen al)out eight years old Carolina's 
mother died, leaving the Laird with six young children. 
Thus early our authoress was thrown upon her own resources, 
but her father, the Laird, was a man of superior character 
and accomplishments, and gave much attention to the rearing 
and education of his children. To l)ovs and girls alike a 
wide range of reading was permitted, to which was added 
music and dancing — particularly Scots songs and Scots reel 
dancing, which was in great vogue at that time. At this 
time, too, Neil Gow, the famous Scots fiddler, was a well- 
known figure at countr}' balls, harvest homes, and fashionable 
weddings, and the visit of Neil Gow and his violin to Strath- 
earn was an event the young people looked forward to with 
the most joyful anticipations. Carolina was by far the most 
musical of the family, but so well was the secret kept that her 
nearest and dearest friends would never have accused her of 
song- writing. For forty years she resided in the old house 
at Gask with her brother Larence, the new laird, and his 
wife, whom he married in 1795. Carolina from her early 
youth possessed a deep religious spirit, but she now became 
more pious and devout than ever. Although much of the 


religious sentiment of the time was opposed to the " profane 
art of wiiting poetry" her piety did not interfere with her pas- 
sion for song, especially the songs of her beloved country. To 
the outside world it was not generally known that there had 
long been an engagement between her and her ha If -cousin, 
Captain Nairne, though at forty she was still unmarried. 
Captain Nairne was Irish by birth, but was connected with 
the Scottish family of the Perthshire Nairnes, and heir at his 
brother's death to the Nairne peerage, the civil rights of 
which had been revoked at the Jacobite Rebellion of 1715. 
Consequently Captain Nairne was in impecunious cir- 
cumstances till the year 1806, when he was promoted to 
the brevet rank of Major, and obtained the appointment 
of Assistant Inspector-General of Barracks in Scotland, 
\\hen he was able to marry and make Carolina Oliphant 
Lady Nairne. Both she and her husband were slightly 
acquainted with Sir Walter Scott, and by one of his great 
acts of kindness he exercised his influence in improving 
the fortune of the Nairne's. When George IV. visited 
Edinburgh in 1822 Scott suggested to him that the restora- 
tion of the forfeited Jacobite families might be one of the 
gracious acts of his reign, the result being that a Bill for the 
purjiose received the Royal Assent in 1824. Thus at the 
age of sixty-seven Major Nairne became Baron Nairne of 
Nairne, and his wife at the age of fifty-eight Baroness Nairne. 
Unfortunately the new distinction was enjoyed only a few 
years by Lord Nairne, for he died in 1830 six years afterwards, 
at the age of seventy-three. His death brought changes 
in the domestic sphere, the most imj)ortant of which was that 
it severed for a time Lady Nairne's connection with Edin- 
burgh. She removed to the south of England, thence 
to Ireland, and, four years afterwards, to the Continent for 
the benefit of her son's health, then a young man of twenty- 
six. He never recovered, and died at Brussels in the thirtieth 
year of his age. Lady Nairne continued to live abroad a 


little loii.m-r. hut i\-tiiriu'(l (o Sootland in 1S4:{. and took ii|) 
luM- resicleiH't' at (Jask House once nioit-, whore she remained 
till lu'r deatli. two years afterwards. 'I'o all who knew any- 
thing of her personality, the piety and devotion of her life 
was well known. The foreign waiting-maid wlio was long 
in her serviee declai'ed "" that her mistress was as near to the 
angel as humai) weakness might ])ermit."" 

The seen^t of Lady Nairne"s anthorshii) was all hut huried 
in the grave with her : not even her husband to his dying 
day had the least suspicion that she was a song-writer, or 
incUdged in any literary exercises whatever. Nevertheless, 
some of the songs must have been sung for half a century 
at least, and were referred to and admired as compositions of 
the most conspicuous genius. When Burns was in the 
heyday of his fame. Lady XairiK^ must have written her 
first lyrical piece, entitled "" The Ploughman." which was 
composed to be sung by lu i- brother at a dinner of the 
Gask tenantry. It was greatly appreciated In all present. 
and it was afterwards circulated by the brother of its 
author, but w itli the precaution that the name of its 
author should not be revealed. This same song was 
much appreciated by Burns, who had now become lyrical 
critic, and was using his utmost endeavours to improve 
and reform Scottish song by providing new words for 
old airs which needed refining and purifying. At the 
commencement of her poetical efforts Carolina (Jli2)hant dees 
not a]j))ear to have been a fertile genius, for there is nothing 
to show that she wrote anything further till 1797. the year 
after the death of Burns, when slie was in the thirty-second 
year of her age. Then came the song that touched every 
true lover of song to their most sensitive depths, " The Land 
o' the Leal." This beautiful ha'ic came to be attributed 
to Burns, composed, it was asserted, on his death-bed, 
and sub.sequently printed in editions of his works. As 
this song first came from the jxmi of Lady Xairne. it 


was supposed to be the address of a dying wife to her 
husband, and read " I'm wearin' awa, John." In spite of 
the more popular substitution of " Jean," the second stanza 
is in favour of the poem being the address of a dying wife 
to her husband — 

" Our bonnie bairn's there, John, 
She was baith guid and fair, John, 
And oh : we grudged her sair 

To the Land o' the Leal." 

This song, though perhaps the best example of Lady 
Nairne's tyrical productions, is by no means her only one_ 
As a matter of fact, there are some ninety-eight in all which 
are said to be the productions of her genius, and between twenty 
and thirty of these are of high poetic merit, while nine at 
least approach the highest lyrical excellence. In 1821 , well nigh 
a quarter of a century before she died, she entered into a 
compact with a small committee of other Edinburgh ladies, 
all sworn to secrecy, to contribute to a collection of national 
airs called The Scottish Minstrel, under the nom de plume 
of " B.B.,"' or Mrs Bogan of Bogan. The Scottish Minstrel 
was issued by Herbert Purdie, a music publisher in the 
city, and was comj)leted in six volumes in 1824, the same 
year as our authoress became Baroness Nairne. 

It was not till 1846, the year after Lady Nairne died, 
that the long-kept secret was revealed. In that year her 
sister, Mrs Keith, thought there was no further need of con- 
cealing the authorship, and the disclosure astonished the 
whole literar}^ world of Edinburgh, where the quiet, pious, 
unassuming lady had been so well known and respected. 
The songs were published in a thin folio, bearing the title. 
Lays from Strathearn : Carolina Baroness Nairne, Author 
of ' The Land o' the Leal,' &c. ; Arranged with Symphonies 
and Accompaniments for the Pianoforte bj^ Finlay Dun." 
In a subsequent edition several pieces that had been omitted 
were included, and Dr Charles Rogers brought out a still 

moi'c fompltMr edition in lS(i!). while another was I)rought 
out 1)\ the Rev. (ieorge Henderson. M.A., H.l)., thus reaching 
a fourth edition in 15)06. 

Althouiih the .laeobite songs of Lady Xairne are her 
most spirited compositions — for intance, '' Charlie's Landing," 
'• Wha'll l)e King but Charlie ? " " Charlie is my Darling," 
and ■■ Will ye no come back again ? " — she could sing well on 
otlur themes. Among her songs of character and incident 
we have "The Auld Hoose," "The Rowan Tree," "Caller 
Herrin'," and " John Tod." Among songs of thought and 
sentiment, where can "" The Land o' the Leal," already 
alluded to, be excelled, while her love songs have a fascination 
all their own. Among these may be mentioned " The Laird 
o' Cockpen," " Kind Robin lo'es me," and ' True Love is 
water 'd aye wi' tears." 

Lady Xairne 's power in drawing from actual life is 
exemplified in many of her pieces, but in few is it better 
illustrated than in " Caller Herrin'," which has immortalised 
the fisherwomen of the Forth. This song was composed 
for the benefit of the son of Neil Gow, the celebrated Scottish 
violhiist, previously mentioned. The fortunes of Nathaniel 
Gow had fallen on evil days, and he had become reduced to 
extreme povert3^ To assist him Lady Nairne sent him 
" Caller Herrin' " anonymously for his benefit through 
an Edinburgh friend. " The Lass o" Gowrie," usually 
found among the collected songs of Lady Nairne, was origin- 
ally written by William Reid, a Glasgow bookseller with 
musical and poetical tastes, whose shop was frequented by 
Robert Burns, John Gait, and other literary contemporaries. 
Li Reid's version an incongruity occurs in his heroine, 
'' Kate o' Gowrie," which obviousl\' marred the sense of 
the song. The incongruity was adjust e*! by Lady Xairne, 
and in that sense the song was improved ; but it must be ad- 
mitted that Reid's verses 2 and 3 are superior in sentiment 


and diction to the corresponding two by Lady Nairne. These 
may be reproduced for the sake of comparison — 

" I praised her beauty loud and lang, 
Then round her waist my arms I flang. 
And said, ' My dearie, will ye gang 

To see the Carse o' Gowrie ? 
I'll tak' ye to my father's ha'. 
In yon green field beside the shaw. 
And mak' ye lady o' them a" — 

The brawest wife in Gowrie." 

Saft kisses on her lips I laid, 

The blush upon her cheeks soon spread, 

She whisper'd modestly and said, 

' I'll gang wi' you to Gowrie.' 
The auld folks soon gied their consent, 
Syne for Mess John they quickly sent, 
Wha tied us to our heart's content. 

And now she's Lady Gowrie." 

Lady Nairne \s version — 

'■ To see her cousin she cam' there. 
An' oh ! the scene was passing fair ; 
For what in ScotlanI can comijare 

Wi' the Carse o' Gowrie ? 
The sun was setting on the Tay, 
The blue hills melting into gre\ , 
The mavis and the blackbird's lay 
Were sweetly heard in Gowrie. 

lang the lassie I had woo'd. 

An' truth and constancy had vow'd. 
But couldna speed wi' her I lo'ed 
Until she saw fair Gowrie, 

1 pointed to my father's ha'. 
Yon bonnie bield ayont the shaw, 

Sae lown, that there nae blast covdd blaw — 
Wad she no bide in Gowrie ? " 

Needless to say, Burns has excelled Lady Nairne as a 
song-writer, but with the exception of Burns and Tannahill 
she is unapproached among later eighteenth century lyrical 
writers. The natural simplicity of her songs, their music 
and rhythm, as well as their unobtrusive humour and pathos, 
must always con mand for her a high position among Scottish 
song- writers. In one and all of them there is a loftiness of 
moral sentiment which is much more easily felt than described, 
conveying as it does the inward beauty of the writer'.^ 

•J 4 

Following Baroness Xairne, the name of Ebenezer 

Pieken may be noticed, but it is by no means so well known, 

though he A\as much more than a mere 

^'"^TtSTs^O^"' scribbler. Born three years later than 

Lady Nairne, he predeceased her by 

twenty-nine years. His life of struggle, poverty, and 

disappointed ambition was terminated at the early age 

of forty-seven. In spite of all, it must be admitted that 

he did some important work, both in poetry and prose, 

particularly the latter. The son of a silk weaver, he was 

bom at Paisley in 1769, and educated for the ministry of the 

United Secession Church. 

Literary ambition early hainited him, and he abandoned 
his clerical prospects for dreams of literary fame — the rock 
upon vvhich so many careers have been shipwrecked. An 
entire failure he certainly was not, but his dreams were never 
realised to anything like the extent he anticipated, which 
is but the old, old story of the life of the literary aspirant. 

When Alexander Wilson, in 1791, read his poem on the 
comparative merits of Ramsay and Fergusson before the 
Debating Society in the Edinburgh Pantheon, Pieken was 
the unsuccessful competitor for the priz3 which was carried 
off by Wilson. When but nineteen years of age Pieken pub- 
lished a volume of Poems and Epistles, mostly in the Scottish 
Diakct, with a Glossary, which was well received, and by none 
more so than by Wilson, his successful rival. At his death 
in 1816 he left the MS. of a Dictionary of the Scottish Dialect, 
which was published two years after his death, and is still 
of some importance from a philological point of view. It 
^\'as most helpful to Jamieson in his preparation of his Standard 
Dictionary of the Scottish Language, completed, with Supple- 
ment, in 1825. The life of Pieken was never at any period 
of it what the world would call a success. Soon after he 
attained his majority he married Miss Belfrage, the daughter 
of the minister of the Burgher Kirk, and opened a school at 


Falkirk, which was soon given up. He- afterwards became 
a teacher in an endowed school at Carron, where he heroically 
fought grinding poverty for five years — an enemy he never 
finally vanquished. The school at Carron he also gave up, 
after which he tried business in Edinburgh, but this venture 
was by no means a success. Once more he was compelled 
to take up teaching to enable him to complete some of his 
literary projects, amongst which was the republication of 
his poems, with additions, in 1813. Two years later he assisted 
Dr Andrew Wilson with a volume of monumental inscx'iptions 
from the tombstones in the Edinburgh graveyards, thus 
playing the part of Old Mortality. In the following year, 
1816, he died, after a short and uneventful life, in the course 
of which the Fates never dealt with him too kindly. As 
a writer of songs and descriptive poetry he secured a 
certain measure of popularity, but he had the misfortune 
to come after Burns, and he was too slavishly devoted to his 
model to venture on an independent flight in versifying. 
Like many another of the smaller fry of rhymsters who followed 
in the wake of Burns, in attempting to imitate the greater 
poet he obscured his OMm originality. 

Picken's poem entitled " New-Year's Day " has no 
special merit beyond showing a fine command of the Scottish 
vernacular, in addition to being a graphic description of the 
customs observed in Scotland on New-Year's Day, with their 
accompanying superstitions. His song entitled " Blithe 
are we set wi' ither " has a Bacchanalian flavour, and 
when the author sings of the jovial crew in their cups '' fling- 
ing care ayont the moon," no doubt the wish was father to 
the thought, for poverty seems to have dogged his steps to the 
grave. Among Picken's other well-known songs are " Pretty 
Nell," " Nan of Logic Green," and " Woo me again," the 
latter of which is perhaps the most popular. The theme is 
old, to be sure, but it savours of the romantic, which ever 
appeals to the youth of both sexes. Young Jamie eagerly 


AV008 Joan, and strives r.rdcntly to win licr allVctions. hut it 
is all in \ain. She rejects his suit with pride and disdain. 
Weary of her lebuffs he at length leaves her to her ])erverse 
fate and when she discovers too late that lie has rc!in(|uislied 
his pirsuit for ever, she is made to say — 

' ' O wad lio but now to his Jean be inclined, 
My heart in a moment wad yield to his mind ; 
Fiut I fear with some ither my laddie is ta'en, 
And sae he'll ne'er off(M' to woo me again.' 

The siiniHier o' Wiv. all I it soon flits awa. 
And th(> bloom on youi' (•ii(<(>k will soon (low in the snaw : 
() think, ere you treat a fond youth wi' disdain, in age the sweet flower nc\er blossoms again." 

Almost as sooJi as tlie eighteenth century had been 

relegated to the archives of the ])ast and the nineteentli had 

dawned, Ricliard CJall was consigned to 

galaxy of Scottish poets and literary 
characters which I intend to deal with. Although 
not in the first, or, indeed, the second rank of minor 
Scottish j)oets, yet the name of (Jail deserves to be 
identified with those great lights who hcl])ed to restore the 
dignity and develo]) the inherent resources of the Scottish 
vernacular. During the closing years of the eighteenth 
century, and when the songs of Bums held the field, several 
of Gall's songs were thought of sufficient merit to be set to 
music, and now, after the flight of more than a century, his 
name is all that is known of him, even by many of those who 
sing and admire the sweet melody of his songs. A small 
volume of his songs and poems was collected, carefully edited, 
and published in 1819, but few of the facts and circumstances 
of his life have been preserved. This was probably due 
to one of two reasons. The first is that his life was an unevent- 
ful one, he having died j^oung, and the second is that the 
friend who was most intimately acquainted witli him, besides 
being best qualified from a literary point of view to write 


a faithful sketch of GaU's life and work, passed away just 
when he was on the eve of engaging in the task. 
This was none other than Dr Alexander Murray, who, 
from the obscurity of a shepherd's son, born at Dunkittrick, 
in the wilds of Galloway, rose to the position of Professor 
of Oriental Languages in the University of Edinburgh. 
Murray was also celebrated as the biographer of Bruce 
and the competent editor of his travels in Abyssinia, and 
still more for the extent of his philological erudition. 
For several years before the close of Gall's life the Rev. 
Alexander Murray was his closest confidant and daily associate, 
being attracted to one another by community of poetic 
sentiment and literary tastes. The only tribute that has been 
paid to the memory of Richard Gall, this young and promising 
poet, is contained in an article in the BiograpJiia Scotica, 
by Stark, and he has not been able to give to the public any 
important details. 

Richard Gall was born at Linkhouse, near Dunbar, 
December, 1776, nearly twenty years before the death of 
Robert Burns. By profession his father was a notary, 
who appears to have been far from being a man in affluent 
circumstances, nor does he seem to have had any desire to 
educate his son to any of the learned professions. More 
from necessity than choice, young Gall was apprenticed 
to the trade of a carpenter with a maternal uncle at the 
age of eleven, consequently his education can scarcely be said 
to have been of a verv efficient character. He was by no 
means void of natural gifts, however, and when at school 
at Haddington he had the reputation of being a boy of more 
than ordinary aptitude for learning. Moreover, he wrote 
some verses when a mere youth which attracted the attention 
of Burns, and also Hector Macneil, with whom he corresponded 
on subjects in which they were interested in common, a bond 
of sympathy being thus established among this trio of poets. 
It may also be remarked that he lodged in the same house 

M\\\\ 'J'honias Camplirll w hilc \\v was propai'iiig the " Pleasures 
of Hope " for publication, the poem by which that poet is 
best known, and who subsequently became such a faded 
spectacle of literary glory. These literary associations 
early filled Gall with hope and ambition, and induced him 
to relin(|uis]\ the trade of carpenter for a more congeiiial 
situation in the office of the Edinburgh Evening Courant, 
then nnder the proprietorship of David Ramsay. Just as 
Gall was advancing to eminence and making a name for 
himself in the sphere of letters, his advance was suddenly 
arrested. In the beginning of 1801 an abscess appeared on his 
chest, which, in spite of medical treatment, rapidly assumed 
a mahgnant nature. Thus a life full of promise was cut off 
in the tAventy-fifth year of his age. 

Like the rest of his poetical contemporaries, he was full 
of patriotic fervour, which is not only manifest in the beautiful 
poem entitled " Arthur's Seat," but in a number of his other 
pieces. The opening lines of the first canto of " Arthur's 
Seat " are suggestive of the poetical divinities before whom 
he preferred to bow the knee — 

" O for a spark o' genial fire. 
Sic as could ance a Burns inspire ! 
O for a Shakespeare's pencil rare 
To trace ilk glowing prospect fair ! " 

For historical traditions and the natural beauties of his 
native land he had a keen appreciation, but he lacked pro- 
phetic \'i.sion, and was seldom animated with bright dreams 
of the future. In spite of his youth, with all his amiability 
and sweetness of song, he was sadly retrospective, and to 
him the glory of his native land slumbered in the past. This 
is duh' emphasised in several of his poems, but the following 
lines from his " Address to Haddington " will suffice as an 
illustration — 

" Wake, Nature's lyre, sweet an' chaste, 
O wake the strains that lulls to rest ! 


Thy notes may charm my throbbing breast 

By anguish torn, 
While I the joys an' pleasures j)ast 

Can only mourn." 

Other verses might be quoted to show that in certain 
moods he had something akin to Shakespeare's characterisa- 
tion of Richard II., when he is made to say — 

" Let's talk of graves, of worms, and epitaphs, 
Make dust our paper, and with rainy eyes 
Write sorrow on the bosom of the earth. 

For God's-sake let us sit upon the ground, 
And tell sad stories of the death of Kings." 

It must be claimed for Gall that his thoughts were 
mostly pure, and the pith and purity with which he wrote 
in the vernacular does great credit to his youthful genius. 
From his delicate sympathy and natural refinement he was 
more capable of writing songs than long-drawn-out themes 
in poetry. Burns was evidently his model, and he died 
too young to have acquired free and unfettered flight in fresh 
regions of poetic fancy. True merit cannot be denied to 
Gall. For instance, such pieces as " The Bard," " The 
Braes o' Drumlee," " Captain O'Kain," " Helen's Lament," 
and " My only Jo and Dearie, O," the latter of which, with 
the " Farewell to Ayrshire," were attributed to Burns, and 
included in Dr Currie's edition of the Poet's works. 

The following stanzas from " My only Jo and Dearie, 0," 
will convey some idea of the sweetness which characterised 
several of his songs, and how closely he could steer to his 
great poetical model — 

•' When we were bairnies on yon brae. 
And youth was blinkin' bonnie, O, 
Aft we wad daff the lee-lang day, 

Olu" joys fu' sweet and mony, O. 

Aft I wad chase thee o'er the lea, 

And round about the thorny tree ; 

Or pu' the wild flowers a' for thee. 

My only Jo and dearie, O. 


I hae a wisli I canna tine, 

'Mang a' the cares that grieve me, O ! 

I wish that thou wert ever mine. 
And never mair to lea\e me, O ! 

Tlien 1 would dawt thee night and daj', 

Xae ither ^arldy care I'd hae 

Till life's warm stream forgot to play, 
My only Jo and dearie. O." 

By way of c-oncludini:. it may be atHnned that as far as 
the hterary merits of the various writers included in this 
chapter are concerned there is a perceptible descent from the 
eminence attained by many previous WTiters, and we observe 
the national characteristic in the process of obhteration. 
With the view of more fidly comprehending the scope and 
development of Scottish literature it is necessary to keep 
distinctly before the mind the two great arbitrary historical 

1. The early movement extending from the da\^ii of 
letters in Scotland, whose more distinct national features 
date from the fourteenth centur3\ It was the outcome of 
the War of Independence, of which the literary sentiment 
is expressed in the works of Barbour, and whose influence is 
distinctly manifested in most of the subsequent writers 
down to Buchanan and Knox. 

2. The later literary movement was manifestly influenced 
l)y the Reformation and the Union with England, and may 
be said to have culminated in Burns and Scott, whose repu- 
tations are universal. Broadly speaking, Burns and Scott 
are the last great literary figures of the Scotland which was 
the outcome of the Reformation and the Union of the two 

During the greater part of the eighteenth century the 
literary rivalry of the Scottish writers with their English 
contemporaries became more and more accentuated, and in 
the contest Scottish literature lost many of itsnational features. 
English men of letter.-; received writings in the vernacular 
with a .sneer, gloriously unconscious that it was vastly closer 


to the writings of Chaucer, one of their own great classical 
writers, than the prevalent English speech. Scottish writers 
and critics made strenuous efforts to counteract the general 
tendency, but it was of little avail. All efforts failed to stem 
the tide ; and after the end of the century, Scottish literature 
became more and more incorporated with the literature 
South of the Tweed. Thus it was to the advantage of Scots 
writers to appeal to a wider public. No doubt the 
spirit which so largely entered into the literary senti- 
ment of Burns and Scott was the natural sequence of 
the teaching of John Knox. At first sight it seems 
an anachronism to associate any fellowship of thought 
and sentiment between this trio of distinguished men. 
Knox's outlook upon life was certainly narrow and cir- 
cumscribed compared with theirs. Yet the fact remains 
that few^ men in the history of any nation has exercised so 
much influence in moulding the character and destinj^ of his 
country as John Knox. With all his love of power and his 
earnest determination to rear a theological fabric according 
to the type and pattern he had conceived, in the implicit 
belief that it was the true reflection of the mind of the Most 
High, he never regarded lightly the importance of secular 
education. Rightly or wrongly, Knox did not appear to 
entertain the fear entertained by so many in the clerical 
profession, that the schoolmaster would ultimately hustle 
the divine off the stage. By his confidence in the rank and 
file, and his scheme of education, he was indirectly, if not 
directly, instrumental in raising Scotland to a position of 
national importance which enhanced her fondly -cherished 
traditions in the eyes of the civilized world. Burns and 
Scott, though illuminating the more secular sphere, were 
not outside or independent of the stream which had its source 
in this theological zealot. Burns in the greater degree 
represented the popular imagination, and thus elevated 
the masses of his countrymen to a literary fellowship which 

Mas (U'stinc'd to add force and \ oluine to their iiationaJ aspira- 
tions. It \\as more tlie prerogative of Scott, perhaps, to 
extend and enh^rge tlie mental sphere of the hterary sentiment 
of Scotland. As has l)een well .said, it was Scott who gave 
Scotland a citizenship in Hteiatnrc. In fine, while Burns 
endeared the history and traditions of Scotland to Scotsmen, 
Scott made them known to the uttermost ccnfines of cultured 
Europe and America, thus completing in a more secular 
and general sense what Knox and the Reformation began. 
It needs no great stretch of the imagination to realise that 
those factors are accountable for the greater catholicity of 
Scottish literature after the close of the eighteenth century. 
In this fact, then, there is sufficient justification for the view- 
that the end of the eighteenth century naturally forms an 
appropi'iate termination to a sketch of this kind. 



ROBERT BURNS was one of those rare men whose 
various activities touch life at almost every point, 
and one who wishes to fully understand what he said and 
did must enter upon a pretty complete study of the period 
in which he lived. This would not have been necessary 
had he sought his inspiration mainly in the emotions which 
stir the hearts of men and women. Such feelings are peculiar 
to neither time nor place. They have their " seat and centre " 
in the human breast in all ages and in all climes, and may 
be understood without any reference to outside events and 
incidents. But Burns found a good deal of his material 
in his environment — in the rural employments in which he 
and his neighbours were engaged, in the amusements which 
occupied their scanty hours of leisure, in the experiences 
which occurred to them from day to day, in the political and 
ecclesiastical problems which they were called upon to solve, 
and in a variety of other directions which must suggest 
themselves to the reader. It is not possible to grasp the 
whole, or anything like the whole, of the meaning of Burns 
when he treated such themes unless one knows what was 
the social, ecclesiastical, and political condition of Scotland 
in the latter half of the eighteenth century, the period which 
directly influenced the Poet, and which, in turn, was directly 
influenced by him. This is an aspect of Burns which I 
discussed in an article on "' Burns interpreted in the light 
of his own times," contributed to the Burns Chronicle in 1910, 
but I have by no means exhausted the material at the disposal 
of one who thus studies the work of the National Bard, and 
my object in preparing this paper is to consider a branch of 
the subject on which I have not yet touched. 


Hiifiis on I'cat'o and War "" is a i)()litk-al tlunu' : hut 
it is iu)t one in tho tivatniciit of which the Poet confintd 
himself to the alTaics of his native eoiuidy. In tlie (Uiys of 
Burns Scotland had l)een for nearfy two eenturies an integral 
part of Great Britain, which even at tliat time was a mighty 
empire, and when we find him writing on peace and war we 
must not think of him only as the National Poet of Scotland, 
giving expression to national sentiments and aspirations, 
but as one of the great forces of the British empire, in shaping 
the destinies of which he felt that he must take some part, even 
though his conduct — misunderstood and misinterpreted — 
should provoke the rebuke of those who were officially his 

It is hardly necessary to teli readers of a publication of 
this kind that while Bums was a careful student of the history, 
the literature, and the philosophy of Scotland, and as well 
acquainted with the present as he was with the past, he was 
also a diligent reader of contemporary history, and though 
the information conveyed to him through the newspapers 
which then existed was of the scantiest character, it was the 
best that could be got, and it was sufficient to keep him abreast 
of the main events that were taking place in England, on the 
Continent, and in America. How stirring those events were 
must be realised l)y every one who possesses any historical 
knowledge at all. When the differences between Great 
Britain and the American Colonies reached a crisis in 1775, 
and war broke out between peoples with the same blood in 
their veins, Burns was a boy of 14, and I can hardly think 
that one who had read with such avidity the record of the 
struggles of h's own counti\- for political independence did 
not, young as he was, eagerh' seize upon every scrap of in- 
formation which he could find regarding the terrible contest 
which was taking place on the other side of the Atlantic. 
There is no doubt, at any rate, that in early manhood, when 
the Americans had declared their independence, although 

it had not been acknowledged by the British Parhament, 
Burns followed intelligently the progress of the war, and also 
watched with interest — doubtless with anxiety and fear — 
the attack which France and Spain — the Bourbon powers — 
had made upon Britain in the time of her weakness and peril. 
Burns saw, too, the beginning of the French Revolution, and 
as a result of that upheaval he was again witness of a war 
between Great Britain and France, a struggle which, though 
he did not live to see it, was ended only on the field of Water- 
loo. Truly those were times when the strength of Great 
Britain was tested to a degree of which we have no personal 
experience — and ever}^ reader can remember the South 
African War- — and strange indeed would it have been had 
Robert Burns, with his love of freedom, and his hatred of 
oppression, not been deeply affected by the great events 
which were passing before him, and been moved to give 
poetic il expression to the thoughts which were in his own 
heart, and in the hearts of the best of his fellow-countrymen 
One does not need to be profoundly acquainted with the works 
of Burns to see the influence which all these struggles had 
upon him — there is a good deal about peace and war in 
both the poems and the letters, and more about war than peace 
— but what he wrote was not always suggested by the wars 
of his time, and in considering the subject I shall deal with 
it as a whole, and not with any particular part of it. 

Before proceeding further I might say that Burns be- 
heved he had fighting blood in his veins. In his " Address to 
William Tytler " he wrote, with reference to the name of 

" My fathers that name have revered on a throne, 
My fathers have fallen to right it." 

Then we find this verse in his " Address to Edinburgh " — ■ 

" Wild beats my heart to trace your steps. 
Whose ancestors, in days of yore, 
Through hostile ranks and ruined gaps 
Old Scotia's bloody lion bore : 


Evil 1 wlu) siiiy in ru.stic lor(> 

Haply my sires liavo left their shed 

Anil faced erim danger's loudest roar. 
Bold fo!lo\vin<i whore your fathers led." 

Yhv martial spiiit in him manifested itself very early, as 
\\iiness his letter to Dr Moore, iii which he says : " The life 
of_[^ Hannibal gave my young ideas such a tuin that I used 
to strut in raptures up and down after the recruiting drum 
and bagpipe, and wished my>elf tall enough that I might be 
a i«oldier." And when " fickle fortune," after fair promises, 
performed ill. it was in the army that Burns thought he might 
find employment and support. Said he :■ — 

' O why the deuce should 1 repine. 
Or be an ill foreboder ? 
I'm twenty-three, and five feet-nine — 

I'll go and be a sodger ! 
I gat some gear \vi' meikle care, 

I held it wee thegither ; 
But noo its gane, and something nr-iir — 
I'll go and be a sodger." 

Burns honestly admired a soldier, and in one of his songs 
he paid him this ccmplinient- — 

'" For gold the merchant p.oughs the main 

The farmer ploughs the manor ; 
But glory is th^ sodger's prize. 

The sodger's wealth is honom- : 
The brave, poor sodger ne'er despise, 

Nor count him as a stranger — 
Remember he's his country's stay 

In day and hour of danger."' 

But to return to the point where I left off. There is 
not a great deal about the American War of Independence 
in the works of Burns, and this, of course, must be accounted 
for by the fact that his poetical powers had not developed 
while that unfortunate struggle was in progress. The first 
reference which he made to the war, so far as I can find, is 
contained in a letter which he addressed to his cousin, James 
Burness, writer, Montrose, on the 21st of June, 1783, a year 
after terms of peace had been signed. In that communication 
he describes " the present wretched state of this country." 


" Our markets," he says, " are exceedingly high — oatmeal, 
17cl and 18d per peck, and not to be got even at that price. 
We have, indeed, been pretty well supplied with quantities 
of white ]3eas from England and elsewhere, but that resource 
is likely to fail rs, and what will become of us then, particu- 
larly the very poorest sort, Heaven only knows. This country 
till of late was flourishing incredibly in the' manufacture of 
silk, lawn, and carpet weaving, and we ar:^ still carrying on 
a good deal in that way, but much reduced from what it was. 
We had also a fine trade in the shoe way, but no\\' entirely 
ruined, and hundreds driven to a starving condition on account 
of it. Farming is also at a very low ebb with us. Our 
lands, generally speaking, are mountainous and barren, and 
our landholders, full of ideas of farming gathered from Eng- 
land and the Lothians and other rich soils in Scotland, make 
no allowance for the odds of the quality of the land, and conse- 
quently stretch us much beyond what, in the event, we will be 
found able to pay. We are also much at a loss for want of proper 
methods in our improvements of farming. Necessity compel- 
us to leave our old schemes, and few of us have opportunities 
of being well informed in new ones. In short, since the 
unfortunate beginning of this American War, and its as 
unfortunate conclusion, this country has been, and still is, 
decaying very fast." 

This narrative of Burns is not corroborated by Professor 
Hume Brown in his History of Scotland recently completed. 
In the third volume of that work Professor Brown, dealing 
with the material prosperity of Scotland from 1745 to 1789, 
says that " the period was marked by an increase in her 
various industries, by an extension of her trade, and by con- 
struction of public works unexampled at any previous time." 
Who is right and who is wrong it is not my duty to discuss ; 
but should the view be taken that Burns, in the concluding 
sentence of the quotation which I have just given, was re- 
ferring to Great Britain, and not only to Scotland, he was 


\(iicin_tx ail (ipiiiiiui. widely acccplcd. i1k> ciiipiiv was 
aliout to disappear f'loiii ainoiiu the nations. 1 may quite 
appropriately ipiote what .lohii Riehard (ireen. in his History 
of the English People, wrote on the subjeet : — " At the close 
of tlie war there was less thought of what she (Englaud) 
had retained than of what she had lost. Sh(> was parted from 
her American Colonies, and at the moment such a ])arting 
seemed to be the knell of her greatness. In wealth, in 
population, the American Colonies far suri)assed all that re- 
mained of her em))ire, and the American Colonies were irre- 
coverably gone. It is no wonder that in the first shock of such 
a loss England looked on herself as on the verge of ruin, or 
that the Bourbon Courts believed her position as a world- 
powci- to be practicall}^ at an end. How utterly groundless 
such a conception was the coming years were to show. The 
energies of England were, in fact, spurred to new efforts by 
the crisis in her fortunes. The industrial development 
which followed tlie war gave her' a material supremacy such 
as she had never know^n before, and the rapid growth of 
wealth which this industry brought with it raised her again 
into a mother of nations, as her settlers built up in the w^aters 
of the Pacific, colonies as great as those which she had lost 
on the coast of America." 

Burns made the American War the subject of a ballad 
to be sung, by anyone who chose to make it a matter of music, 
to the tune of '' Killiecrankie." It is by no means a happy 
effort, and can only be understood by a (constant reference 
to footnotes, unless one is familiar with the details of the 
struggle, and with the people, civil and military, who were 
responsible for conducting it. There is no need to quote 
mors than the o])ening verse — 

" W'Ikui (jiiilford good, our i'ilot stood, 
And did our hellim thraw, man, 
Ae night, at tea, began a plea, 
'\^'itllin Aniorica, man : 


Then uja they gat the maskin-pat. 

And in the sea did jaw, man ; 
And did nae less, in full Congress, 

Than quite refuse our law, man." 

This, it wil' be admitted, is not the best kind of narrative 

In the address which the Poet composed when, in a 
dreaming fancy, he was transported to the birthday levee of 
King George the Third on 4th June, 1786, we find two allusions 
to the consequences of the war, which had been brought to 
a close four years earlier. In the first the loss of the Colonies 
is indicated thus — 

" Your Royal nest, beneath your wing, 
Is e'en right reft and clouted, 
And now the third part o' the string 
And less will gang about it 

Than did ae day " — 

and in the second the payment of the bill is thus referred to — 

" And now yeVe gi'en auld Britain peace, 
Her broken shins to plaister ; 
Your sair taxation does hei fleece 
Till she has scarce a tester " — • 

that is, tiU she has hardly a sixpence left. 

The war which Britain waged with France and Spain at 
the time of the revolt of the American Colonies, and also 
previous struggles with these Continental countries, provided 
Burns with material for one of his spirited songs in the " Jolly 
Beggars." Among the motley group which the Foet met in 
Poosie Nancie's was a hero of many fights, who, though 
dismembered in a way that made further active service on 
his part extremely improbable, still robed himseh in the 
habiliments of a soldier — 

" First, neist the fire, in auld red rags. 

Ana sat, weel braced wi' mealy bags. 

And knapsack a' in order." 

The song with which he entertained the other gangrels 
touched on some of the engagements in which he had taken 


part in the Fveiich and Sjjanish wars. He wa« initiated 
into the serious business of his trade under General Wolfe 
at the siege of Quebec ; later ho fought with Lord Albemarle 
when he stormed and took the Castle of El Moro in the conquest 
of Cuba, and he ended his military career in the famous 
defence of Gibraltar, which lasted from 1779 to 1782. The 
Spanish, takuig advantage of Britain being at war with the 
American Colonies and with France, attempted to regain 
possession of the fortress, which was held by General Elliot, 
a Scotsman belonging to Roxbuighshire, who had the com- 
mand of only 5000 men. After various desperate attacks 
had failed, the French joined the Spanish, and preparations 
were made for a grand assault, these including floating bat- 
teries, so that the siege could be conducted from the sea. 
With red-hot balls and incendiary shells Elliot destroyed 
the batteries, and in all the other directions the charges of 
the united forces of France and Spain were repelled. Captain 
Curtis was one of the officers who rendered signal service on 
that memorable occasion. With these explanations let me 
quote the song — 

" I am a son of Mars, 
Who have been in many war.s, 
And show my cuts and scar.s 

Wherever I come — 
This here was for a wench. 
And that other in a trench, 
When welcoming the French 

At the sound of the drum. 

My 'prenticeship I past 

\A'here my leader breath'd his last, 

When the bloody die was cast 

On the heights of Abram ; 
And I served out my trade 
\\'hpn the gallant game was played, 
And the Moro low was laid 

At the sound of the drum. 

I lastly was with Curtis, 
Among the floating batt'ries. 
And there I left for witness 
An arm and a limb : 


Yet let my country need mo, 
With Elliot to head me, 
I'd clatter on my stumps 
At the sound of a driun. 

And now though I must beg 
With a wooden arm and leg, 
And many a tatter'd rag 

Hanging over my bum, 
I'm as happy with my wallet, 
My bottle and my callet. 
As when I used in scarlet 

To follow a drum. 

What though with hoary locks 
I must stand the winter shocks. 
Beneath the woods and rocks 

Oftentimes for a home, 
When the tother bag I sell. 
And the tother bottle tell, 
I could meet a troop of hell 

At the sound of a drum." 

Another matter concerning the war with France and 
Spain must be noted. About the time that Bums, according 
to his own confession contained in the Hues already quoted, 
was thinking of becoming a soldier Admiral Rodney, by 
restoring to Britain the command of the sea, did more than 
any other man to save the empire from threatened ruin. 
The situation is tersely summed up by John Richard Green, 
from Avhose pages another quotation may be made. " On 
the 16th of January, 1780,"' says Green, " Admiral Rodney, 
the greatest of English seamen save Nelson and Blake, en- 
countered the Spanish fleet off Cape St. Vincent, and only 
four of its vessels escaped to Cadiz. At the opening of 1782 
the triumphs of the French Admiral De Grasse called him 
to the West Indies, and on the 12th of Aj)ril a manoeu\Te, 
which he (Rodney) was the first to introduce, broke his 
opponent's lines, and drove the French fleet shattered from 
the Atlantic. With Rodney's last victory the struggle of 
the Bourbons was really over, for no means remained of 
attacking their enemy save at Gibraltar, and here a last 
attack of the joint force gathered against it was repulsed by 
the heroism of Elliot." 


This iia\al tiiumph was too important to be readily 
forgotten, and tor many years — p?rhaps till it was eclipsed 
by the greater achievement of Nelson at Trafalgar — the anni- 
versary of the fight was suitably observed. Bums was 
present at one of those celebrations, and hv has loft us some 
record of it in the foUowhig lines, which bear the title, " On 
the Aimiversarv of Rodney's Victory '— 

" Instead of a song, boys, I'll give you a toast : 
Here's the mem'ry of those on the twelftli tliat we lost ! — 
We lost, did I say ? No, by Heaven, that we found ! 
For their fame it shall live while the world goes round. 
The next in succession I'll give you — The King ! 
\\Tioe'er would betray him, on high may he swing ! 
And here's the grand fabric, our free Constitution, 
As built on the base of the ' great Revolution ! ' 
And longer with politics not to be cramm'd. 
Be anarchy curs'd, and be tyrannj- damn'd ! 
And who would to Liberty o'er prove disloyal, 
May his son be a hangman, and he his fiist trial ! " 

In striking contrast to this patriot sentiment is the 
quatrain penned on a " Thanksgiving for a National Victory.' 
Bums gives no indication of the particular event to which 
he referred ; but it is supposed that the occasion was the 
defeat of the French by Lord Howe off the coast of Brest 
on the first of June, 1794. The lines riui — 

" Ye hypocrites ! are these your pranks ? 
To murder men, and give God thanks ? 
Desist — for shame ! Proceed no further ; 
God won't accept your thanks foi' murder ! " 

If the surmise thai llic allusion is to Howe's victory is 
correct, the sentiments of the Poet may be explained by the 
fact that at the beginning of the second war with France, 
-which broke out in 1793, his sympathies lay with the French 
people. He believed — and his opinion was not an isolated 
one — that the real object of Great Britain was to crush those 
principles of liberty which were spreading throughout the 
country, and which were so dear to the Poet and to those 
who, thinking like him, but with more freedom to act, had 
banded themselves into societies to which tlic\ sjavc the name 

" Friends of the People." He embodied some of their aspira- 
tions in his song, " Here's a Health to them that's Awa'," 
of which two verses may be quoted — 

" May Liberty meet with success ! 

May prudence protect her frae evil ! 
May tyrants and tyranny tine i' the mist, 
And wander the road to the devil ! 

Here's freedom to him that wad read ! 

Here's freedom to him that wad write ! 
There's nane ever feared that the truth shoiild be lieard, 

But they wham the truth wad indite." 

Burns was strongly opposed to this war, and while he 
had to be careful what he said he could not altogether restrain 
his feelings, which found some kind of expression in his verse 
and correspondence. '' War I deprecate," he wrote to Mrs 
Dunlop, a few weeks before the outbreak of hostilities; "misery 
and ruin to thousands are in the blast that announces the 
destructive cannon." And a few months later, when the 
disastrous effects of the struggle were seen in the destruction 
of trade, he thus unburdened his heart to Peter Hill, Edin- 
burgh : "Oh, may the wrath and curse of all mankind 
haunt and harass those turbulent, unprincipled miscreants, 
who have involved a people in this ruinous business." The 
song " Logan Braes," which voices the plaint of a woman 
whose husband has been called to fight the battles of his 
country, was suggested by the European conflict in which 
Britain was playing what was to prove the most prominent 
part. In that effusion the Poet delivered himself of another 
imprecation regarding those who are responsible for war — 

■■ O wae upon you, men o" State, 
That brethren rouse to deadly hate ! 
As ye make mony a fond heart mourn, 
.Sae may it on your heads return ! 
How can your flinty hearts enjoy 
The widow's tears, the orphan's cry ? 

In sending the song to George Thomson for publication in 
The Museum Burns used still stronger language. " Have 


3'c)u ever."" he w lote. ' felt yeui- bosom leady to burst with 
indigiiati(»n on readiii'j; or seeing how these mighty villains 
divide kingdom against kingdom, desolate provinces, antl lay 
nations waste out of th(» wantonness of ambition, or often 
from still more ignoble passions '. In a mood of this kind 
to-day,'" he added, " I recollected the air of ' Logan Water,' 
and it occurred to nic tliJit its (pierulous melody probably 
had its origin from the i)laintive indignation of some swelling, 
suffering heart fired at the tyrannic strides of some public 
destroyer, and overwhehned with private distress, the con- 
sequences of a country "s niin." The subject was introduced 
in another letter to Peter HiU. " How do you weather this 
accursed time ? " he asked his correspondent. " God 
only knows what u ill be the consequence ; but in the mean- 
time the country, at least in our part of it, is still progressive 
to the devil."" When liurns used these words he was 
expressing his firm conviction that the Government was 
pursuing a ruinous jiolicy, and when he added, " For my 
part ' I jouk and let the jaw flee o'er,'" he was makinii an 
ineffectual effort to forget the troubles of the State. 

Some relief was found in writing new songs or in improv- 
ing old ones, and as in the case of " Logan Braes," these had 
occasionally peace and war for their theme. One example 
is " The Soldier's Return," which must be ranked among the 
most pleasing of the narrative pieces of Burns. A correspondent 
of George Thomson told how it came to be written. " F^urns, 
I have been informed, was," says this writer, " one summer 
evening at the Inn at Browiiliill with a couple of friends 
when a poor way-worn soldier ])assed the w iiuhjw . Of a sudflen 
it struck the Poet to call him in and get the story of his adven- 
tures ; after listening to which he all at once fell into one of 
those fits of abstraction not inmsual with him. He was 
lifted to the region where he had his ' garland and singing 
robes about him,' and the result was the admirable song 
wliich he sent vou " — 


" When wild War's deadly blast was blawn. 

And gentle peace returning, 
Wi' mony a sweet babe fatherless. 

Any mony a widow movu-ning : 
I left the lines and tented field, 

A-Miere lang I'd been a lodger ; 
My humble knapsack a' my wealth, 

A poor but honest sodger. 

A leal, light heart was in my breast. 

My hand unstained wi' plunder ; 
And for fair Scotia, hame again, 

I cheery on did wander : 
I thought upon the banks o' Coil, 

I thought upon niy Nancy, 
I thought upon the 'witching smile 

That caught my youthful fancy." 

The piece, which is more a poem than a song, i^ too long 
to quote in full, and I am assuming that every reader is 
famiHar with it and the beautiful love-story which it contains. 
Another song — the one adapted to the tune " O'er the Hills 
and Far Away "- — was suggested by the engagements of the 
British fleet. " We have many sailor songs," WTote Burns, 
in sending the production to Thomson, " but as far as I at 
present recollect they are mostly effusions of the jovial sailor, 
not the wailings of his love-lorn mistress." In the song 
with which I am now dealing the girl is bitterly conscious 
of the dangers to which her sweetheart is exposed. These 
are her words — 

" How can my poor heart be glad 
When absent from my sailor lad ? 
How can I the thought forego 
He's on the seas to meet the foe ? 
Let me wander, let me rove. 
Still my heart is with my love ; 
Nightly dreams and thoughts by day 
Are with him that's far away. 

When in simimer noon I faint 
As weary flocks arovmd me pant, 
Haply in this scorching sun 
Jly sailor's thund'ring at his gun. 
Bullets, spare my only joy ! 
Bullets, spare my darling boy ! 
Fate, do with me what you may, 
Spai-e but him that's far away !" 


Tho song concliidcs with an invocation to innvce, and the 
siMitinuMit was clearly that ol' the I'oct himself — 

" rpace, tliN <>li\(- wand extend. 
And bid wild wiir his ravage end — 
^FiiM witli brollicr man to meet. 
And as a Ijn.tlicr kindly greet." 

Bnt the most striking song of the idnd to which 1 am 
now referring is, of course, the Ad(h-e-<s of Bruce to his army 
at Bannockburn, commonly known as ' Scots Wha Hae." 
Burns has placed on record his feelings with regard to that 
great battle. .Standing at the Borestone, and surveying 
the scene of the conflict, this is w hat he w rote : " Here no 
Scot can pass uninterested. 1 fancy to myself that J see my 
gallant heroic countrymen coming o'er the liill and down upon 
the plunderers of their country, murderers of their fathers ; 
noble revenge and just hate glowing in every vein, striding 
more and more eagerly as they approach the oppressive, 
insulting, blood-thirsty foe. I see them meet in gloriously 
triumphant congratulation on the victorious field, exulting 
in their heroic royal leader and rescued lil)eitv and 

Writing to the Earl of Buchan, enclosing a coi)y of 
Bru.ce's Address, Burns said : '" Independent of my enthusiasm 
as a Scotsman, I have rarely met with anything in history 
which interests my feelings as a man equal with the story 
of Bannockburn. On the one hand, a cruel but able usurper, 
leading on the finest army in Europe to extinguish the last 
spark of freedom among a greatly daring and greatly injured 
peo])Ie ; on the other hand, the desperate relics of a gallant 
nation devoting themselves to rescue their bleeding country 
or pei'ish with hei."' Fiather, in a letter to George Thomson, 
dated Septeml)er. \1\)']. l^urns declared that the thought of 
the tradition that the old air. "Hey tuttie taitie," was Robert 
Bruce's march at the battle of Bannockburn " warmed him 
to a pitch of enthusi-^sm on the them'' of lib'Tty and inde- 

pendence, which he threw into a kind of ode fitted to the air, 
that one might suppose to he the gallant Scot's address to 
his heroic followers on that eventful morning." I do not 
need to quote a song so familiar, but two of the verses may at 
least be given — 

" By oppression's woes and pains ! 
By your sons in servile chains ! 
We will drain our dearest veins. 
But they shall be free ! 

Lay the proud usurpers low ! 
Tyrants fall in every foe ! 
Liberty's in every blow ' — 
Let us do or die !" 

In a postscript to the letter to Thomson, Burns said : 
" I showed the air to Urbani, who was highly pleased with 
it, and begged me to make soft verses for it, but I had no 
idea of giving myself any trouble on the subject, till the 
accidental recollection of that glorious struggle for freedom, 
associated with the glowing ideas of some other struggles 
of the same nature. 7iot quite so ancient, roused my rhyming 
mania." And so, with all his enthusiasm for Bannockburn, 
Burns, as Dr William Wallace well observes, was really, under 
cover ol" a fourteenth cent iry battle-song, liberating his soul 
against the tyranny that was opposing liberty at home and 
abroad, and. moreover, striking at the comfort of his own 

Guarded though he was in the expression of his opinions. 
Burns felt too strongly not at times to get himself into serious 
trouble. One instance comes directly A\ithin the scope 
of my subject. In a private company he gave as a toast — 
" May our success in the present war be equal to the justice 
of our cause," a sentiment which, in the case of one whose 
loyalty was unquestioned, would have been applauded. 
Captain Dods, an officer of the regiment stationed in Dumfries 
at the time, was present, and interpreting the toast 
as an innuendo against the policy of the Government, which 


it ])robal)ly was, took up the matter warmly. Burns, for- 
getting that he could not justify one indiscreet expression 
by giving vent to others, replied with as much heat, and the 
t^^•o men began a squabble in which both ajjpear to have lost 
their senses. Writijig on the following morning to Samuel 
Clark, a lawyer of considerable social and professional position 
in the town, Burns said : '' From the expressions Captain 
Dods made use of to me, had I had nobody's welfare to care 
for but mj^ own we should certainly have come, according 
to the manners of the world, to the necessity of murdering 
one another about the business. The words w^ere such as 
generally, I believe, end in a brace of pistols. . . . You 
know that the report of certain political opinions being mine 
has already once before brought me to the brink of destruction. 
I dread last night's business may be misrepresented in the 
same way. You, I beg, will take care to prevent it. 
What, after all, was the obnoxious toast ? — ' May our success 
in the present war be equal to the justice of our cause,' a 
toast that the most outrageous frenzy of loyalt}^ cannot object 
to." Apparently the good offices of Clark prevailed — at 
any rate no more was heard of the incident. 

But, however much Burns sympathised with the French 
people in what he believed to be their struggle for liberty, 
he fully proved, when the occasion arose, that he was not a 
disloyal subject of his own country. The dispatch of an 
army to the Continent had seriously weakened the home 
defence, and to meet wliat w as regarded as a crisis a volunteer 
army was raised. The town of Di-nifries contributed two 
companies, in which many citizens, whose free expression of 
liberal opinions created a suspicion of their loyalty, made 
haste to enrol themselves. Among the number was Bams, 
whose enlistment, according to Allan Cinningham, met with 
opposition from some of the Tories. "' I well remember.'' 
Avrote Cunningham, "' the appearance of that respectable 
corps — their <■<](] hut no^ ungraceful dress, white kerseymere 

breeches and waistcoat, short bhie coat faced with red, and 
round hat surmounted by a bearskin, like the helmets of our 
Horseguards, and I remember the Poet also — his very swarth}' 
face, his ploughman stoop, his large dark eyes, and his 
indifferent dexterity in the handling of his arms." It was 
at this time that Burns wrote his patriotic song, " The 
Dumfries Volunteers," which met with extraordinary 
popularity — 

" Do3S haughty- Gaul invasion threat ? 

Then let the loans beware, sir, 
There's wooden walls upon our seas, 

And volunteers on shore, sir. 
The Nith shall rin to Corsincon, 

The Criffel sink in Solway, 
Ere we permit a foreign foe 

On British ground to rally ! 

O let us not, like snarling curs. 

In wrangling be divided ; 
Till slap ! come in an vmco loun. 

And wi' a rung decide it. 
Be Britain still to Britain true. 

Among oursel's united ; 
For never but by British hands 

Maun British wrangs be righted." 

We can well imagine ho\\-, in the condition of public 
affairs which then prevailed, the song (to use again the words 
of Allan Cunningham) '' hit the taste and suited the feelings 
of the humbler classes, who added to it the ' Poor and Honest 
Sodger,' ' The Song of Death,' and ' Scots wha hae wi' Wal- 
lace Bled.' Hills echoed with it ; it was heard in every 
street ; and did more to right the mind of the rustic part 
of the population than all the speeches of Pitt and Di.ndas 
QT the Chosen Five-and-Forty.'" 

" The Song of Death," which Thomas Campbell was fond 
of describing as one of the most brilliant efforts of Burns, 
was written in 1791 to an old Highland air ; but, though pro- 
duced independent of the war with France, it suited the 
spirit which was dominant in the years immediately following, 

and was thcrcioiv cxt rniu-ly i)()|)iilar. Witness the concluding 
lines — 

" In tho liol.l of proud honour, oiu* swords in our hands, 
Oiu' Iving and oiu- country to save, 
Wliilc vic'tt>rj' shines on life's hxst cl)bing 
() ! who \\()uld not die witli th(> brave 1 

One thing A\hich the student of Burns notices is that 
while he alluded so frequently to war he seldom attempted 
to depict an actual conflict, a fact which is remarkable in the 
case of one possessed of such a fine imagination and 
unsurpassed powers of description. In " The Battle of 
Shcriffmuir " the Poet goes into details, thus — 

T\\c red-coat lads, wi' black cockauds. 
To meet them were na slaw, man. 

They rushed and pushed, and blude out -gushed. 
And niony a bouk did fa", man : , 

The great Argjde led on his files, 

1 wat they glanced for twenty miles ; 

They houghed the Clans like nine-pin kyles ; 

They hacked and hashed, while braidswords clashed. 

And tlirough they dashed, and hewed, and smashed. 

Till fey men died awa', man." 

This is not what to expect of Burns, and. indeed, one 
may be permitted to doubt whether he is the author of the 
poem. Gilbert Bums was not sure that " The Battle of 
Sheriffmuir " was the work of his brother, though Dr Wallace 
does not see that there is any just grounds for suspicion. 
Dr Currie said that Burns wrote the verses on his Highland 
tour, basing them on a more profuse production of the Rev. 
John Barclay, the founder of a small sect called the 
Bare lay ites. 

Yet the most compact descrii)tion of a battle ever written 
came from the pen of Bums. The opinion is not mine, 
but that of Lord Tennyson, who, in a conversation with his 
friend Canon Rawnsley, quoted the folloAving four lines 
in proof of his belief — 


" The trumpets sound, the banners fly, 

The glittering spears are ranked ready, 
The shouts o' war are heard afar, 

The battle closes deep and bloody." 

In preparing this paper I put to myself this question — • 
and the same question may also have entered the mind of 
the reader : Since Burns was such a hater of war and such a 
lover of peace, did he suggest any means by which his vision 
of universal brotherhood might be realised ? How to secure 
peace a mong all the nations was a problem which I do not think 
he tried to solve. Others besides Burns may have cherished 
the hope that some day world-wide peace would prevail ; 
but neither he nor any one else of his time thought out any 
practical scheme to bring about a result so much to be desired. 
The nations were too busy fighting to think how such con 
flicts might be avoided in the future, and generations were 
to pass before anything in the way of disarmament was to le 
seriously discussed. But while all this is true, Burns cer- 
tainly had ideas on the subject. He saw that the wars 
which were waged in his own time had their origin in the 
inborn yearning for liberty ; he believed that if the nations 
granted this right' — to which all mankind were entitled- — to 
their subjects and to their neighbours, the causes of war 
would vanish, and this conviction he embodied in the 
democratic poem, which he either wrote entirely or greatly 
improved, " The Tree of Liberty "^ 

" VVi' plenty o' sic trees, I trow. 

The warld wad live in peace, man ; 
The sword wad help to mak' a plough. 

The din o' war wad cease, man : 
Like brethren in a common cause 

We'd on each other smile, man, 
And equal rights, and equal laws. 

Wad gladden every isle, man." 



MOST of us recognise that the home hfe of Robert Burns 
was capable of improvement ; yet we should not 
forget that the National Poet lived at a time when hard 
drinkmg was the rule and not the exception amongst count- 
less thousands of the people, high and low, rich and poor, 
so it is not fair to apply to Burns the moral standards of the 
present day. It has been clearly demonstrated by those in 
a position to judge, that Burns was not a drunken sot, as 
certain of his detractors would lead us to believe ; on the 
contrary, he was able to pursue his avocation, either 
as ploughman, ganger, or poet. A man addicted to liquor, 
addicted to it in the sense of generally being " fou and unco 
happy," could not have produced what Burns produced in 
the way of literature. When we take into account the 
length of his years (he was only 38 when he died), the hard 
lot A\ hich he had to experience, and the opportunities placed 
within his reach to cultivate to the fullest extent that w hich 
was nearest his heart — the making of a sang for puir ai Id 
Scotland's sake — we must realise that he accomplished 
wonders. His output was marvellous, considering the 
quality of his work, in the domain of literature. To the 
uninspired, the writing of songs and poems is frequently 
drear}' work, and alwaj's mechanical ; but to Bums the 
muse was a passion, and therefore amongst the greatest of 
earthly pleasures. The temperament of Burns was of the 
self- revealing kind. He never paraded his virtues before 
an admiring world, but he was always ready to depreciate 
his own sins of omission and commission. This man had 
none of the hypocrisy that is so prevalent to-day. 

We all know the National Poet was a " great ladies' 
man." As Lord Rosebery has reminded us, he fell in love 


with every girl he met, but only in one case did his passion 
end in marriage. His heroines are numerous, amongst 
the number being " Highland Mary," " Clarinda," Peggy 
Alison, and Mary Morison. We refer, of course, to those 
who never made an alliance in the matrimonial sense with 
Burns. It was the ladies of position and the country lasses 
that stimulated his muse always to the highest point, and but 
for the weaker sex, as they are called despite the virility of many 
of the suffragists, we would have been without many of his 
poetic gems. A glance at his poems and songs reveals the beauty 
and power of his work in honour of the fair sex. No poet admired 
the qualities of the female sex more than Burns. They kindled 
his wit and waukened his lear. No matter where Burns was, 
he never " lost his head " in the presence of the fair sex. 
It may be said that in one way he " lost his head " frequently 
as a " ladies' man," but that is not what is implied here. 
Burns was always natural, even in the presence of ladies o' 
lang pedigree and the literati of Edinburgh. The Duchess 
of Gordon of his day was held spellbound by his conversation, 
while men eminent in their various callings were similarly 
affected. In the presence of women, Burns invariably gave 
of his best ; his marvellous eyes sparkled, he was overflowing 
with wit and humour, and he had always the heart of the 
genuine man — the heart that felt for human woe, and was 
touched by everything that revealed true nobility of 

Jean Armour, the Mauchline mason's daughter, proved 
a good wife. Those of us who have read and studied the 
life of the Poet know he sinned at times, sinned grievously ; 
yet Jean Armour, Avith that affection and devotion character- 
istic of women, shut her eyes to his failings and pursued the 
even tenor of her way in an uncomplaining spirit. For so 
doing Jean Armour is deserving of a warm corner in the 
hearts of all admirers of the Poet. One of his best known 
songs was written in her honour, a song that has thrilled 



-\iidiences in all parts of the world. That song, characteristic 
o the stJ^e oi 15uiii.> in love alfairs, has conferred upon Jean 
immortality. In his love songs there is often the note of 
unconscious exaggeration ; all his heroines are angels. If 
we had seen and known them all in the flesh we might have 
been, as his brother Gilbert broadly hints, a trifle disappointed. 
There can be no doubt Jean Armour proved a faithful and 
devoted wife, and contributed greatly to the domestic happi- 
ness of the Poet. She was alwa5^s jealous of the good name 
and the fame of her husband. When her parents thought 
little of Burns, she remained true, though she did not realise 
at the time that Burns would become one of the immortals. 
The female sex has been honoured and ennobled by Jean 
Armour's conduct during her days of courtship, her married 
life, and her period of widowhood. She is a singularly sweet 
and fascinating character, especially to those who know the 
waj^s of the simple country-folk in Scotland. 

A well-known Dumfries journalist, Mr Wm. M'Diarmid, was 
an intimate friend of Mrs Burns, the widow of the Poet, and' 
for about fifteen years preceding her death in 1834 he acted 
as her adviser on all occasions, her amanuensis, and the safe 
repository of her thoughts and feelings on a number of sub- 
jects. Mr M'Diarmid noted down from the lips of Mrs Bums 
facts as to her illustrious husband which have helped to remove 
many of the misconceptions formed regarding Bums. Dealing 
with the Poet's residence at Ellisland he says, he read books 
not always seen in people's hands on the first day of the week, 
yet he never neglected his Bible. On one occasion a woman 
named Nance Kelly and the Bard were sitting together in 
the " spence," when the conversation drifted into religious 
channels. Bums quoted so much Scripture that Nance was 
greatly astonished. Up to that day she had been labouring 
under the impression that the Poet was wanting in true 
religious feeling, and that he was not sound in the accepted 
<loctrines of the time. On meeting her husband, she ex- 


■claimed, " Oh, David Kelly, hoo they hae wranged that man 
(Burns), for I think he has mair o' the Bible aff his tongue 
than Mr Inglis himsel'." The Mr Inglis referred to by the 
woman was the anti-burgher minister. Bums enjoyed the 
compliment, and almost the first thing he communicated 
to his wife on her arrival was the " lift " he had got from 
Nance. Bums was an omnivorous reader. If he lay long 
in bed, he was always reading. " At all meals he had a book 
beside him on the table. He did his work m the forenoon, 
and was seldom engaged professionally in the evening. When 
at home in the evening he employed his time in writing and 
reading, with the children playing about him. Their prattle 
never disturbed him in the least." It was only on rare occa- 
sions that Burns and his wife had company in the evening. 
He was much occupied in composing his songs, and we are 
told that, " having plenty of Excise paper, he scrawled 
away." Jean Armour thought — and she was no mean judge 
— her husband composed chiefly while riding and walking, 
and that he wrote from memory after he returned home. 
Burns was not a good singer, but he had a very' correct ear. 
He was very particular with letters of importance, and uni- 
formly wrote a scroll before penning the principal one. He 
went to bed generally at eleven o'clock, and sometimes a little 
sooner. He attended church frequently, and was a regular 
visitor at the manse of the dissenting clergyman. He never 
took supper, and never drank by himself at home. The 
Poet assisted his children Avith their lessons, explaining to 
them everything they had difficulty in understanding. He 
" was most strict in impressing on their minds the value 
and beauty and necessity of truth. He would have for- 
given them any slight fault, but to have told a lie was in his 
eyes almost an inexpiable offence. He used to read the Bible 
to Wilham, Francis, and Robert ; and William was in the 
habit of remarking, after his death, " Mother, I cannot see 
those sublime things in the Bible that my father used to see." 


Burii.s read the big family Bible frequently — the book that is 
to be seen in the Museum at Allo\say, and for which the 
trustee -, paid a fabulous price. 

Bums was happy in his home life, which is a pattern 
to manj^ to-day. At certain stages of his career he " sowed 
his wild oats," a habit of large numbers in all ranks yet, 
despite the preaching in many pulpits and the evangel of 
the better day. He was alive to his duties and responsi- 
bilities as a husband and a citizen of the British Empire ; 
and had he lived in our day we can guess in which direction 
his sympathies would have been shown. We can generally 
judge a man by the l'*e he leads at home. Are we to beheve 
the elictum of some that the Poet elied a drunkard, and that 
he passed away a reviled anel discredited man ? People 
who talk in that way are capable of believing anything. 
Their minds are always open to assimilate the vapourings 
of the slanderer, and to condemn people on the flimsiest 
of pretexts. Is it reasonable to assume that Mrs Bums 
and others in a position to judge laid their heads together, 
as it were, and concocted a fictitious story as to the habits 
and the home life of the Poet ? Such an idea should be 
banisheel from the minds of the doubting in our day and in 
elaj's that lie ahead. It is true Burns elied in the agony of 
despair. He was a physical wreck, worn out before his time ; 
yet that was in no sense due to ultra-vicious habits, but to 
the hard work of his youth and his own neglect in husbaneling 
properly the highly-stung constitution with which he hael 
been endoweel. We have conclusive evielence by Jessie 
Lewars, Syme, Maxwell, Mrs Burns, and others who saw 
him at all seasons and in different moods, that the Poet was 
not nearly so bad as he was painted by the lying tongues 
of the gossips of Dumfries. However, Dumfries has 
made ample amends for the work of certain section-; of 
its citizens of the Poet's day. That town possesses his tomb 
and preserves justifiably, with other towns anel other com- 


munities, his memory ; but Ayrshire will always have the 
greater part of Bums. His touching prophecy to his wife 
some time before his death that he would be better known 
and more appreciated a hundred years later, indicated that 
he had faith in the character of his works, and that he would 
triumph over the pettiness of the would-be Purists, as numer- 
ous and active now as in Burns's day. >s one authority has 
well said, " It is Burns's greatness, not his littleness, that 
concerns mankind." A truer observation has never been 



THOl'CJH Rolx'it limns had his detractors m the ranks 
of the clergy, it must not be inferred they were sohd 
m their denunciation of him, and that to them his name spelled 
anathema. The National Poet had several good friends 
amongst the ministers of his day, two of whom we shall 
mention here, viz., the Rev. John Skinner, the author of 
" Tullochgorum," and the father of Bishop Skinner, of Aber- 
deen, a well known and influential cleric of his time ; and the 
Rev. Dr Lawrie, of Loudon. 

The name of Skinner is not so well known as that of 
Dr Lawrie, especially to Ayrshire and south-west of Scotland 
people of the present day. Although Bums and Skinner 
never met, they engaged in correspondence and also exchanged 
rhj-ming Avares. Burns had a high opinion of the clerical 
poet of the north, and went the length of describing " Tulloch- 
gorum " as the best Scots song Scotland ever saw : while 
Skinner was a warm admirer of Coila's Bard, and never ceased 
to sing his praises. In thinking of Burns and admiring 
his contributions to the literature of the country, many of 
us are apt to forget the lesser poetical lights, of whom Skinner 
was one. Burns lives, and Skinner lives. The latter was 
Episcopal clergyman at Longside, Aberdeenshire, and it was 
in the beautiful churchyard of that sequestered spot that 
his remains were interred within a few yards of the grave 
of the parish minister. Skinner said they had been good 
friends in this world, and that he preferred to be buried as 
near as possible to his confrere. He also remarked that he 
did not want a better neighbour in the next world. 

As Skinner is best known on account of his authorship 
of " Tullochgorum," some reference to the origin of the song 


may be excusable. On the occasion of a meeting of Scottish 
clergymen at Ellon, then a small village in the county of 
Aberdeen, but now a thriving town and a police burgh, 
Skinner had gone to spend the day with some others at the 
house of a Mrs Montgomery. After dinner, says the late Sir Hugh 
Gilzean Reid (an Aberdeenshire man and a former north- 
country reporter and editor), a warm dispute of a political 
nature arose, during which the lady expressed to Mr Skinner 
— who was taking little part in it — her surprise that no 
appropriate words had been composed to the fine old Strath- 
spey called " The Reel of Tullochgorum," and having asked 
for a song, he at once gratified her wishes, and, as Burns 
has observed, " the wishes of every lover of Scottish song, 
in this most excellent ballad." Dr Chambers, who did so 
much to cultivate a love of Scottish and other literature, 
says something of a national as well as a patriotic character 
may be claimed for it, and there is a great deal of truth in 
the observation. It was, it is beheved, Skinner's " Ewie 
wi' the Crookit Horn " that inspired Burns to write the 
elegy on his pet ewe, and the connection between the two 
will be seen from the following : — 

Skinner says — 

" But thus, poor thing ! to lose her hfe 
Aneath a bleedy villain's knife, 
I"m really fleyt that oui' guidwife 

Will never win aboon't ava. 
Oh ! a' ye bards benorth Kinghorn, 
Call your muses up and mourn 
Our Ewie wi' the crookit horn, 

Stown frae's, and fell'd, and a'." 

Burns says — 

" Oh, a' ye bards on bonnie Doon, 
An' wha on Ayr your chanters tune, 
Come, join the melancholious croon 

O' Robin's reed ! 
His heart will never get aboon — 

Poor Mailie's dead ! " 

During his pilgrimage to the north of Scotland in 1787 
Burns spent a short time in the Granite City, and was intro- 
duced to Bishop Skinner at the printing office of Mr Chalmers 


(it the Aberdeen Journal, a newspaper that had a report of 
tlie battle of Culloden, and lioiirislies still on the gospel of 
Conservatism. It is related that with the worthy son of 
* Tullochgorum " the National Poet spent a most agreeable 
hour. " Did not your father write ' The Ewie wi' the Crookit 
Horn ? ' " asked Burns. " Yes," was the answer. '' Oh, 
that I had the loun that did it ! " Burns continued, in a 
rapture of praise ; " but tell him how I love, and esteem, 
and venerate his trulj'^ Scottish muse." 

When Burns learned that during his journey from 
Gordon Castle to Aberdeen he had been within a few miles 
of " Tullochgorum's " dwelling, he was deeply grieved at 
having missed the opportunity of seeing one for whom he 
entertained so sincere a regard, and whom he delighted to 
honour as a brother poet. His parting message to Bishop 
Skinner AvaS' — " Well, I am happy m having seen you, and 
thereby conveying my long-harboured sentiments of regard 
for your w'orthy sire. Assure him of it in the heartiest maimer, 
and that never did a devotee of the Virgin Mary go to Loretto 
\\ith;more fervour than I wo'uld have approached his dwelling, 
and worshipped at his shrine." 

" Tullochgorum " was at the time about seventy years 
of age. When his son conveyed to him Bunis's message he 
was highly gratified at the compliments bestowed, and also 
sincerely sorry that he had missed seeing the famous Plough- 
man Poet. He at once indited an epistle to Burns, which 
contained the following verses : — 

" Wae's my auld heart I wasna wi' you. 
Though worth your while I couldna gie you ; 
But sin' I hadna hap to see you 

When ye was North ; 
I'm bauld to send my .service to you, 

Hyne o'er the Forth. 

Sae prood's I am that ye hae heard 

O' my attempts to be a bard, 

And think my muse nae that ill-fawrd, 

Seil o' your face ! 
I wadna wish for mair reward 

Then your guid grace. 


Yolir bonnie beukie, line by line, 
I've read, and think it freely fine ; 
Indeed, I winna ca't divine, 

As others might ; 
For that, ye ken, frae pen like mine. 

Wad no' be right. 

But, by my sang ! I dinna wonner 
That ye've admirers, mony hun'er; 
Let gowkit fleeps pretend to skunner 

And tak' offence, 
Ye've naething said that leuks like blun'er 

To fowk o' sense. 

But thanks to praise, ye're i' your prime. 
And may chant on this lang, lang time ; 
For, lat me tell you, 'twere a crime 

To baud your tongue, 
Wi' sic a k ack's ye hae at rhyme. 

And ye sae young ! 

An hour or sae, by hook or crook, 
And maybe twa, some orra ouk. 
That I can spare frae Holy Beuk — 

For that's my hobby — 
I'll slip awa' to some bye-neuk. 

And crack wi' Robbie. 

Sae, canty ploughman, fare-ye-weel, 
Lord bless you lang wi' hae and heil, 
And keep you aye the honest chiel 

That ye hae been ; 
Syne lift ye to a better biel 

When this is dune." 

Burns responded to Skinner's epistle, which he described 
as the best poetical comjiliment he had ever received, but he 
did not couch his thoughts in rhyme ; he preferred " plain, 
dull prose." The letters that passed between the two poets 
have been preserved, and they certainly do credit to both. 

In the course of his first letter to Skinner, Burns says : 
■ — " Accept, in plain, dull jjrose, my most sincere thanks 
for the best poetical compliment I ever received. I assure 
you, sir, as a poet, you have conjured up an airy demon of 
vanity in my fancy which your best abilities in your other 
capacity would be ill able to lay. I regret, and, while I 
live, shall regret, that when I was in the north I had not the 
pleasure of paying a younger brother's dutiful respect to the 


author of the best .Scotch song ever Scotland saw, ' Tulloch- 
gorum's my Dehght.' The world may think sHghtingly of 
the craft of song-making if they please, but as Job says, 
' Oh that mine adversary had written a book ! ' — let them 
try. There is a certain something in the old Scotch songs 
— a wild happiness of thought and expression — which pecu- 
Uarly marks them, not only from English songs, but also 
from the modern efforts of song-^\Tights, in our native mamier 
and language. I have often wished, and will certainly endea- 
vour, to form a kind of common acquaintance among all the 
genuine sons of Caledonian song. The world, busy in low 
prosaic pursuits, may overlook most of us ; but ' reverence 
thyself.' The world is not our peers, so we challenge the 
jury. We can lash that world, and find ourselves a very 
great source of amusement and happiness, independent of 
that world." 

Burns concluded by asking Skinner's aid m connection 
with Johnson's Miscellany, and informed him that three of 
his pieces — " TuUochgorum," " John o' Badenyon," and 
" The Ewie wi' the Crookit Horn " — would be published. 

■ TuUochgorum," in replying, said, inter alia, that Burns 
had overrated his " rhyming excursions." Proceeding, he 
observed :■ — " The difference between our two tracks of 
education and ways of life is entirely in your favour, and gives 
you the preference every manner of way. I know a classical 
education will not create a versifying taste, but it mightily 
improves and assists it ; and though, where both these meet, 
there may sometimes be ground for approbation, yet where 
taste appears single, as it were, and neither cramped nor 
supported by acquisition, I will sustain the justice of its 
prior claim to applause. Do not sheath your own proper 
and piercing weapon. From what I have seen of j^ours 
already, I am inclined to hope for much good. One lesson 
of virtue and morality delivered in your amusing style, and 
from such as you, will operate more than dozens would do 
from such as me, who shall be told it is our employment, 

and be never more minded, whereas from a pen like yours, 
as being one of the many, what comes will be admired. 
Admiration will produce regard, and regard will leave an 
impression, especially when example goes along." 

In his next letter, Burns says to Skinner : — " Your songs 
appear in the third volume, with your name in the index, 
as I assure you, sir, I have heard your ' Tullochgorum,' 
particularly among our west-country folks, given to many 
different names, and most commonl}' to the immortal author 
of the ' Minstrel,' who, indeed, never wrote anything superior 
to ' Gie's a sang, Montgomery cried.' " 

Skinner acknowledged by forwarding to Burns two 
songs he had previously alluded to in correspondence. Speak- 
ing of Skiimer's songs on one occasion, Burns remarked, 
" And what is of still more consequence, he is one of the 
worthiest of mankind." 

On being asked by Colonel Ferguson, of Pitfour, what 
he could do to add to his comfort in his old age, Skinner 
wrote as follows :■ — 

Lodged in a canty cell of nine feet square, 
Bare bread and sowans and milk my daily fare ; 
Shoes for my feet, soft clothing for my back — 
If warm, no matter whether blue or black ; 
n such a sober, low, contented state, 
What comfort now need I from rich or great ? 

Now in my eightieth year, my thread near spun. 
My race through poverty and labour run, 
Wishing to be by all "my flock beloved. 
And for long service by my Judge approved ; 
Death at my door, and Heaven in my eye. 
From rich or great what comfort now need I ? 

Let but our sacred edifice go on 
With cheerfulness until the work be done ; 
Let but my flock be faithfully supplied. 
My friends all with their lot well satisfied : 
Then, oh, with joy and comfort from on high, 
Let me in Christian quiet calmly die, 
And lay ixiy ashes in my Grizel's grave, 
'Tis all I wish upon the earth to have." 


The old nians wishes were respected, and though more 
than a hundred years have passed since his death, his tomb 
is still a shrine to those who admire his lyrical gifts and the 
life he lived as an ambassador of righteousness. 

The song that pleased the fancy of Burns deserves all 
the praise he bestowed upon it, and its popularity can be 
readily understood. It is a vigorous bit of work, has the 
homely wisdom that appeals to the average individual, and 
goes with a fine swing. In reading it or hearing it declaimed, 
one has a desire to cry " Hooch !" and engage in the merry 
dance. Here is the song, which de:erves to be better known : — 

" Come gie's a sang, Montgomery cry'd, 
And lay your disputes all aside, 
What signifies't for folks to chide 

For what was done before them ? 

Let Whig and Tory a' agree, 
Whig and Tory, Whig and Tory, 
Whig and Tory a' agree 

To drop their Whig-malorum ; 

Let Whig and Tory a' agree 
To spend the night wi' mirth and glee. 
And cheerfu' sing alang wi' me 
The Reel o' Tullochgorum. 

O, Tullochgorum's my delight, 
It gars \is a' in ane unite. 
And ony sumph that keeps up spite, 
In conscience I abhor him ; 

For blyth and cheerie we'll be a', 
Blyth and cheerie, blyth and cheerie, 
Blyth and cheerie we'll be a'. 

And mak' a happy quorum ; 

For blyth and cheerie we'll be a' 
As lang as we hae breath to draw, 
And dance till we be like to fa' 

The Reel o' Tullochgorum. 

What needs there be sae great a fraise 
Wi' dringing, dull Italian lays ? 
I wadna gie our ain Strathspeys 

For half a hunder score o' ' em. 

They're dowf and dovvie at the best, 
Dowf and dowie, dowf and dowie, 
Dowf and dowie at the best, 
Wi' a' their variorum ; 

They're dowf and dowie at the best, 
Their allegros and a' the rest, 
They canna please a Scottish taste 
Compar'd wi' TuUochgorum. 

Let warldly worms their minds oppress, 
Wi' fears o' want and dovible cess, 
And sullen sots themselves distress 
Wi' keeping up decormn. 

Shall we sae sour and sulky sit. 
Sour and sulky, sour and sulky. 
Sour and sulky shall we sit 

Like auld philosophorimi ! 

Shall we sae sour and sulky sit, 

Wi' neither sense, nor mirth, nor wit. 

Nor ever try to shake a tit 

To the Reel o' TuUochgorum ? 

May choicest blessings aye attend 
Each honest, open-hearted friend. 
And calm and quiet be his end. 

And a' that's good watch o'er him ; 

May peace and plenty be his lot. 
Peace and plenty, peace and jlenty. 
Peace and plenty be his lot. 

And dainties a great store o' ' em ; 

May peace and plenty be his lot, 
Unstain'd by ony vicious spot. 
And may he never want a groat 

That's fond o' TuUochgorum. 

But for the sullen, frumpish fool 
That loves to be oppression's tool, 
May envy gnaw his rotten soul, 

And discontent devour him : 

May dool and sorrow be his chance, 
Dool and sorrow, dool and sorrow, 
Dool and sorrow be his chance, 

And nane say Wae's yne for him ; 

May dool and sorrow be his chance, 
Wi' a' the ills that come frae France, 
Wha e'er he be that winna dance 
The Reel o' TuUochgorum." 

Skinner's best poem is undeniably " The Monjanusk 
Christmas Ba'ing," in which he shows his wonderful descriptive 
powers, his quaint humour, and his ready command of the 
dialect of Aberdeenshire. Burns is seen at his best in describ- 


iiig the revels in Poosie Xancie's hostelry at Mauchlhie ; in 
fact, some of our Bums commentators say " The Jolly 
Beggars " is his masterpiece. Skiimer is also seen at his 
best in portrajong the humours of a form of football, which 
seems to have been more exciting in some respects than the 
game as it is played to-day. 

Skinner was born on October 3rd, 1721, in a \Aald and 
romantic part of Aberdeenshire, and although brought up 
a staunch Presbji}erian, he joined the Episcopal communion, 
ultimately, at the age of 21, becoming a clergyman. His first 
and only charge was in the parish of Longside, where he 
spent practically all his daj^s at Linshart, and where he earned 
fame as a ii^cholar and theologian. He was a great Latin 
scholar, a voluminous contributor to the Encyclopcedia Britan- 
nica, and published in two volumes an ecclesiastical history 
of Scotland. Being a strong Jacobite, he was persecuted 
and even suffered imprisonment on account of his views. 
He passed away on 16th June, 1807, in his eighty -sixth year, 
and in the churchyard of Longside there was erected a hand- 
some monument to his memory. Until a year or two ago 
his tombstone was in a state of disrepair, but a number of the 
admirers of his works came to the rescue, and now the last 
resting-place of one of Burns 's friends in the ranks of the 
clergy is in an excellent state of preservation, and worthy of 
the man and his message. 

Like Dr Lawrie, of Loudon, who communicated with 
Dr Blacklock, of Edinburgh, regarding the works of Bums, 
and contributed in no small degree to preventing the National 
Poet from going to Jamaica, " Tullochgorum " acted well 
his part, and was endowed with those quahties that stamp 
the true man, and not those of the " Holy Willie " type, not 
so numerous to-day as in the time of Robeit Bums. 



MEN of all classes, creeds, and countries — as has been 
shown in recent issues of the Burns Chronicle — have 
paid the highest tributes to the genius and character of 
Scotland's Bard. Statesmen, soldiers, poets, critics, divines, 
men of affairs and men of letters, have all united to sound 
the praise of Robert Burns. But what have representative 
writers of the gentler sex had to say of our Poet ? The 
world knows how sweetly Burns has sung the charms of 
womankind. None of the poets has given us such a gallery 
of fair women as Ave have in the songs of Scotia's Bard. An 
examination of the writings of our leading poetesses and other 
lady writers brings to light some remarkable tributes paid 
by women to our Poet. Women of his own time and women 
of later days, women of high degree and of low estate — 
not only Scotswomen, but women of England, Ireland, 
France, and America — have alike expressed some of the highest 
appreciations of Burns, not only as a poet and singer, but for 
the manliness and tenderness of his nature. From Queen 
Victoria on the throne of the British Empire to Janet Hamil- 
ton, the humble poetess of Coatbridge, women have been 
charmed by, and have written in terms of the highest admira- 
tion of Burns and his immortal verses. Here is a somewhat 
random collection of some of these feminine tributes : — 

Friends and Contemporaries. 

My brother was not at all what most folks thought him — he was 
all his life a man who feared God in his heart. — Mrs Begg (Isabella 

He was sent to speak truth, surcharged with a divine mission ; 
he poured it forth out of his great loving heart sweetlv, tenderly, man- 


fully into God's earth, despite kings, priests, or louts. — Sarah Cameron, 
New Zealand (Grand-daughter of the Poet). 

1 have met a man from London who tells me he would never grudge 
a journej' to Scotland, had it done nothing but made him acquainted 
with Burns's poems. — Mrs Dunxop of Dunlop. 

The most royalh' courteous of all mankind. — Mrs Basil Montagu. 

If others have climbed more successfujly to the heights of Par 
nassus, none certainly ever outshone Burns in the charms — the sorcery, 
I would almost call it — of fascinating conversation, the spontaneous 
eloquence of social argument, or the unstudied poignancy of brilliant 
repartee. — Mrs Maria Riddell. 

Burns was a fine haun' <.t plea'?ing bairns ; . . . . mony's 
the time I have seen him tak' them on his knee and tell them a story. 
— Mr=. HrTCHisoN (Janet Meikle). 

Burns micht be a very clever lad, but he certainly was regardless ; 
as to the best of my belief he never took three half-mutchkins in my 
house all his life. — Nanse Tinnock. 

Burns has looked at Nature, in her wild and rustic operations, 
with his ovm eyes, and he is particularly happy in his winter landscapes. 
— An-na Seward. 

I have been much pleased with the pcems of the Scottish ploughman. 
— Mrs Barbaxtld. 

S<-otia 1 from rude aflfiiction shield thy Bard, 

His heaven-taught numbers fame herself will guard. 

— Helen Maria Williams. 

To hear thy song all ranks desire, 

Sae weel you strike the dormant lyre ; 

Apollo with poetic fire 

Thy breast does warm, 
And critics silently admire 

Thy art to charm. 
— Janet Little (" The Scottish R^ilkmaid "). 

But when he sung to the attentive plain 
The humble virtues of the patriarch swain, 
His evening worship, and his social meal, 
And all a parent's pious heart can fee ; 
To genuine worth we bow submissive down, 
And wish the cottar's lowly shed our own : 
With fond regard our native land we view, 
Its clustered hamlets, and its mountains blue. 
Our " virtuous populace," a nobler boast 
Than all the wealth of either India's coast. 

— Mrs Grant of Lag^an. 

We talked of Burns and of the prospect he must have had, perhaps 
from his own door, of Skiddaw and his companions, indulging ourselves 
in the fancy that we might have been personally known to each other, 
and he have looked upon those objects with mere pleasure for our 
sakes. — Dorothy Worhsworth. 

Praise of Queens. 

The Queen [Victoria] sat down to spin at a nice Scotch v\ hee I , 
while I read Burns to her — " Tam o' Shantor " and " A Man's a Man 
for a' That," her favourite. — Letters of Norman Macleod. 

Scots, wha hae wi' Wallace bled, 
Scots, wham Bruce has aften led, 
Scots, your Burns is not yet dead. 
His wondrous song has never fled ! 

— Carmen Sylva (Queen of Roumania). 

Irish Tributes. 

H,)w little did the exhausted mother, when she thanked God that 
"a maa was born into the world," imagine what a strong yet tender 
heart beat within the shelter of that little bosom, or what fearful 
throes and lofty imaginings were crad'ed in the head that nest'ed on 
her bosom ! — Mrs S. C. Hall. 

They [the lines of " Ae Fond Kiss "] are the Alpha and Omega 
of feeling, and contain the essence of an existence of pain and pleasure 
distiHod into one burning drop. — Mrs Anna Jameson. 



Ah ! wlio would sav the minstrel failed his mission to fulfil — 
Sought rest inglorious on liis lees, or let his harp lie still ? 
He laid him with the early dead, for brief his span of life. 
Yet stored the world with deathless song whilst battling midst its strife. 
— Sarah Parker Douglas {" The Irish Girl "). 

French Women's Praise. 

In the whole of English literature there is no more beautiful 
tribute than his rendered to the virtues of the peasant, nor any finer 
description of labour's rewards. — Mme. P. Julette Adams. 

What higher place can we give to Robert Burns than that which 
he occupies by divine right in every heart in which the love of nature 
and the sense of song are present ? — Louise de la Ramee (" Ouida "), 

I set your Burns with Milton as the two greatest poets of Great 
Britain. — M. Betham-Edwards. 

American Tributes. 

Since Adam, there has been none that approached nearer fitness 
to stand up before God and angels in the naked majesty of manhood 
than Robert Burns ; but there was a serpent in his field also ! — 
Margaret Fuller (Count«ss Ossoli). 

The bold lyric of Burns [" Scots WTia Hae "] is but an inspired 
kind of version of the real address which Bruce is said to have made 
to his followers ; and whoever reads it will see that its power lies not 
in appeal to brute force, but to the highest elements of our nature — 
the love of justice, the sense of honour, and to disinterestedness, self- 
sacrifice, courage unto death. — Harriet Beecher Stowe. 

In the villages where he dwelt there seems to be no man, no child, 
who does not apparently know every detail of the life he lived there, 
nearly a hundred years ago. — Helen Hunt Jackson. 

We saw him as from Nature's soul 

His own drew draughts of joy o'erflowing ; 

The plover's voice, the briar-rose. 
The tiny harebell lightly growing. 

The wounded hare that passed him by, 

The timorous mousie's ruined dwelHng 
The cattle cowering from the blast, 

The dying sheep her sorrow telling — 
All touched the heart that kept so strong 

Its sympathy with humbler being. 
And saw in simplest things of life 

The poetry that waits the seeing. 

— Agnes Maule Machar. 

Nearly a century has elapsed since the Peasant Poet was laid in 
Ills last resting-place, yet to-day the interest in his tomb is world-wide, 
and up to the present time great men are writing of his life and lamenting 
his untimely death. — Mrs A. A. Wellington. 

Centenary Verses. 

We hail this^morn 
A centiu-y's noblest birth — 

A Poet, peasant-born. 
Who more of Fame's immortal dower 

Unto his country brings 

Than all her kings ! 

— IsA Craig Knox (Prize Po3m). 

No sweeter music poet's hand hath wrung 
From Scotia's lyre — no son of genius sung 
In loftier strains — no patriot's battle-cry 
Like his can nerve the arm when foes are nigh. 

— Mrs Janet Hamilton (The Blind Poetess). 

But Master still]of Time dead Burns shall be, 
His words still watchwords for the brave and free — 
His songs, still love-songs, to the young and fond — 
His fame still linking with the time beyond. 
Much hath been lost within the vanished years. 
But not His power o'er human smiles and tears ; 
And when the Hundredth Year agaia returns, 
More shall be lost — but not the name of Burns. 

— Hon. Caroline Norton 


His lays are now a nations wealth, as" household words " thoy seem,. 
They sing them in their festal hours — through young love's rosy dream — 
The very soil is clsussic ground where once his footsteps trod ; 
Still rests the shadow of his soul on Ayr's poetic sod ; 
Still through the lapse of misty years the admiring spirit turns, 
Till Scotland's old heroic soil is called " The Land of Burns ! " 

— Mary J. Katzmann, Halifax, Nova Scotia. 

English Tributes. 

Read Burns ! No one ever compressed so much meaning into so 
few words. Their beautiful rhythm seems their least beauty. — Lady 

Truth is better than art. Burns's Songs are better than Bulwer's 
Epics. — Charlotte Bronte. 

The sweetest, the sublimest, the most tricksy poet who has blest 
this nether world since the days of Shakespeare ! — Mary Russell 


And Burns, with pungent passionings 
Set in his eyes : deep lyric springs 
Are of the fire-mount's issuings. 

— Elizabeth Barrett Browning. 

In Scotland Burns is " a name to conjure with." — Mrs Newton 

It is the strong, clear truthfulness of Burns which gives such 
powerful reality to every varied expression of feeling in his poems, 
and which carries his lyrics into the very hearts of his readers. — 
Anna Buckland. 

Mute is thy wild harp now, O Bard sublime ! 

Who, amid Scotia's mountain solitude. 
Great Nature taught to build the lofty rhyme, 

And saw beneath the daily pressure rude 

Of labouring poverty, thy generous blood 

Fired with the love of freedom. 

— Charlotte Smith. 


Sweet Bard ! 'twas thine to soar- on high 

With inspiration and the Muse ; 
To claim from beauty's radiant eye 

Compassion's dews ; 
To raise the smile of social glee, 

The patriot's manly heart to fire, 
Or wake the tender sympathy, 

With plaintive lyre. — Mrs Hemans. 

Some heavy thought has often lost its weight 

When " Robbie Burns " has come to share the hour, 

Crooning his rhymes till my soul grew elate 
With deep responses to his minstrel power. 

— Eliza Cook. 

A man of rare genius He deserves all the praise 

which has been accorded to him. — Emily Mewburn. 

Whatever view of the man we choose to take, the poetry of Burns 
holds an uncontested place in the literature of the world ; his songs 
are on the lips and in the hearts of high and low alike ; and had 
life or his temperament been other than it was it is possible that art 
might have been the poorer. — Elizabeth Lef. 

Scottish Tributes. 

His soul had ever a secret place, a hidden altar, on which the fire 
of piety was ever, almost unconsciously, burning. — Mrs J. C. Simpson 
(" Gertrude "). 

Just when our Scottish dialect was on the wane, Burns's voice 
was heard, from Land's End to John o' Groat's House, reasserting 
Scotland's claim to national existence. — Rhona Sutherland. 

The delicate, masterly hand of Burns, whose name will be lovingly 
.cherished as long as there are Scotch hearts in the world. — Mary 
Carlyle Aitken. 

As a poet Scott must be ranked far below Birrns. He had not the 
power which the Ayrshire ploughman possessed in so high a degree 
of touching the heart, of expressing our strongest feelings in simple 
musical language, — Amelia Hutchison-Stirling. 


For gifted was ovir master-band 
To tune the hearts of every land ; 
His voice could sweeter utterance give 

To Nature's universal tone ; 
To latest time his name shall live, 

For Nature's harp was all his own. 

— Mrs Richardson, of Langholm. 

Burns came, like Homer, from the very fountain-head of life : 
nobody had taught him a note — he had his music from Nature, and he 
took his theme from Nature. — Mrs Oliphant. 

Burns, . . . from snatches of his songs heard now and then, 
was a perpetual delight to me long, long before I had words to tell of 
the charm which my ear knew ; for Burns, whatever his faults, was 
no sentimental liar, and a child understands what it cannot yet explain. 
— Jessie Annie Anderson. 

Burns, that large-hearted Bard, and Lady Nairne — those two are 
the saviovu-s of Scottish song. — Jessie P. Findlay. 

Burns had made the path to recognition smooth — for Hogg. 
The educated world had been surprised into seeing life through the 
eyes of a ploughman ; his pity, his satiric indignation, had knocked 
at its heart, the music of his songs still rang in its ears, the clouded 
ending of his brief day haunted its conscience with a vague sense of 
guilt — it was in only too great a hurry to recognise a f enius from the 
sheep-folds. — Florence MacCunn. 

In Burns we have an infinite tenderness, and ever-present humanity 
in every one of his graphic pictures. No part of creation is to him 
utterly inanimate, and the contemplation of it is constantly leading 
his thoughts upwards with unaffected piety to the Creator Himself 
— M. S. Gairdner. 

Among all the poets. Burns is the most real, the nnost frank, the 
most free. He is the type of Scotland, alike in its good and its ill. 
— Mrs Watson (" Deas Cromarty "). 



THE subject of the Politics of Burns naturally falls into 
three divisions. In the first are grouped his creed, 
opinions and principles ; in the second their sources would 
be investigated, in so far as they can be ascribed to origins 
outside himself ; in the third would be sketched the course 
of their development, as it may be traced in his writings, 
and in such incidents in his life as bear upon politics. This 
paper is restricted to the first of these divisions. Space was 
to be considered, and compression makes for concentration 
and clearness, but the restriction has its drawbacks. At 
many points Burns 's politics touch his reading of the social 
riddle — the organisation of the fabric of society, the distri- 
bution of wealth, the grading of ranks, and kindred matters. 
The same intellectual acumen and judgment brought to 
bear upon politics, political institutions, forms of government, 
the relations between rulers and ruled, he carries into social 
affairs, and to the consideration of such subjects as kingship, 
statesmanship, rank, title, religion as distinct from formality and 
virtual hypocrisy, learning and pedantry, routine education 
and its outcome in either culture or chronic, dull stupidity, 
equality, and the like. It comes out at last that kings, 
statesmen, politicians are referred to the standard of simple 
manhood, learned men to that of capacity and intelligence, 
and national causes to that of humanity and its welfare. 
Things political, personal, and social run together into one 
comprehensive theory of life. The attempt, nevertheless, 
has here been made to isolate Burns's politics. The second 
and third of the above divisions — origins and evolution 
— branching out into his social philosophy, may perchance be 
coijsidered " some ither day." 


At the outset one or two points may be noted which 
throw light upon his general position, are essential to defining 
and understanding it, and are the explanation of his political 
sympathies; of the attitude he maintained tr wards the 
authorities of his day, and of his construction of the colossal 
world-events of the period. These latter include the American 
War of Independence, the French Revolution, the relations 
between Great Britain and France, and the general European 

In home politics, it must ah\a_ys be borne in mind that, 
in the present-day understanding of the term, Burns was 
no adherent of party. He was neither a Whig nor a Tory, 
but held fast by certain principles independent of both. 
He crossed party lines, gave no more heed to them than one 
for whom they did not exist, when questions arose involving 
either right, justice, purity, and liberty — or their opposites, 
wrong, injustice, corruption and tyranny. He held patriotism 
and freedom above loyalty to the sovereign, and loved liberty 
too sincerely either to compress his love within national 
limits or to condition it upon the natural, but possibly mis- 
leading, promptings of nationality. His devotion was too 
deep, his outlook too wide, his conception of liberty too 
loity to be disturbed by national prejudice. " Liberty ! " 
he wrote the Earl of Buchan when, early in 1794, sending 
him " Scots Wha Hae," " thou art a prize truly, and indeed 
invaluable, for never canst thou be too dearly bought." 
The invocation comes in like a familiar refrain, and it is only 
by assorting passages of a like import, that the hold his passion- 
ate love of freedom had upon the heart of Burns can be fully 
appreciated. In the same month of January he sent a copy 
of the song, or ode, to Cai>tain Miller, and wrote him : " The 
following ode is on a subject which I know you by no mean:" 
regprd with indifference — 

' O Liberty ! 

Thou mak'st the gloomy face of nature gay, 

Giv'st beauty to the sun, and pleasure to the day.' 


It does me so much good to meet with a man whose honest 
heart glows with the generous enthusiasm, the heroic daring 
of liberty, that I could not forbear sending you a composition 
of my own on the subject." Again, when writing Mrs Dunlop 
on 25th June, 1794, with the first fragment he composed 
of a designed " irregular Ode for General Washmgton's 
birthday," he says : " The subject is Liberty ; you know, 
my honoured friend, how dear the theme is to me." 

This ode is the justification of the observation that he 
placed liberty above loyalty. He was never an unthinking 
loyalist of the conventional tj^pe. It is quite possible, be 
it observed, to adhere to the monarchical form of government, 
and to have faith in the rule of the abstract king, without 
having either admiration or respect to bestow upon the 
occupant of the throne for the time being. Should occasion 
arise to justify it, that is, it is not only possible but inevitable 
that, even b}^ the most loyally disposed monarchist, a dis- 
tinction be drawn between the throne as representing an idea, 
as the centre and pertaining to the symbols of sovereignty, 
and the reigning King. In that is a sufficiently precise 
indication of Burns 's standpoint. He held by the monarchy, 
but he assuredly had neither affection nor reverence for 
George III. 

In early life, and at least down to 1786-87, he A\as, like 
many whom he must have met in Edinburgh, a sentimental 
Jacobite. When he wrote his autobiographical letter to 
Dr Moore he was under the impression, possibly mistaken, 
that some of his forefathers had suffered in the Stewart 
cause, and that may partly explain the apparent stimulation 
of his Jacobitism in congenial company, and in localities 
especially rich in Stewart memories and associations. It 
must, nevertheless, be said that he is not altogether consistent. 
He could write Captain Stewart that Prince Charles Edward's 
Birthday was hallowed to him " as the ceremonies of Religion, 
and sacred to the memory of the sufferings of my King and 


my Forefathers," and in the " Birthday Ode for 31st 
December, 1787," brand the House of Hanover as 

" the base usurping crew, 

Tlie tools of faction and the nation's curse." 

Yet, in the following year (1788, Nov. 8th) he wrote the 
editor of The Star, with seemingly sober deliberation, that 
while the monarch of France triumphed over the liberties 
of his people, " with us, luckily, the monarch failed, and his 
warrantable pretensions fell a sacrifice to our rights and 
happmess " — " Likewise happily for us, the kingly power was 
shifted into another branch of the family " — " The Stewarts 
have been condemned and laughed at for the folly and im- 
practicability of their attempts in 1715 and 1745 ; that they 
failed I bless God, but cannot join in the ridicule against 
them." To bless God for the failure of the two Jacobite 
risings does not savour of deep-rooted Jacobitism, and hardly 
consists with the sympathy for the exiled House expressed 
elsewhere. In the Star letter, it will be remembered, Burns 
goes on to take up the American cause, and condemns the 
government for oppression similar to that under which 
Great Britain suffered while the Stewarts wore the crown. 
He compares the American Congress of 1776 with the English 
Convention, and thinks it possible that the posterity of the 
Colonials who fought for and won independence " will celebrate 
the centenary of their deliverance from us, as duly and 
sincerely as we do ours from the oppressive measures of the 
wrong-headed House of Stewart." The fulfilment of the 
forecast came with the enthusiastic centennial celebrations 
of 1876. Burns closes his letter with a plea for pity towards 
the illustrious unfortunates. 

The latter discloses a trait quite characteristic of the 
great-hearted Poet. He could feel sorry for the devil — be 
" wae to think upo' yon den, ev'n for your sake." The 
Stewart House recalls the Mouse's, Cosy there they thought 


to dwell, till crash ! the coulter of revolution reduced it to ruin 
— " It's silly wa's the win's are strewin' ! " 

" That wee bit heap o' leaves an' stibble, 
Has cost thee mony a weary nibble ! 
Now thou's turned out, for a' thy trouble, 

But house or hald, 
To thole the Winter's sleety dribble 

An' cranreuch eauld ! " 

Like the mouse, the Stewarts are homeless, beggar'd 
exiles, and the parallel is complete. With Burns, feeling 
often coloured judgment, and at times clouded it. He 
pitied the Stewarts, although he thought the country well 
rid of them, and condemned the failings and autocratic 
blunders concerning prerogative that led to and warranted 
their overthrow. Upon that opinion, however, it by no 
means follows, in a question of consistency, that he admired 
their successors. If his written estimates of the Stewarts, 
and his expressions of regard for them seem out of harmony 
with each other, it simply means that a lingering sentiment 
of semi-traditional attachment, inducing regret for the unto- 
ward issue, was at war with his convictions as a subject and 
citizen ; and there is no possible inconsistency between that 
feeling and the irreverent contempt in which he held the 
House of Hanover. He had no respect for either, but he 
knew the Scots history of the older line, and as both Scot 
and Briton, mourned alike its decadence and the ensuing 
travesty of kingly government under King George. 

In or about 1787, he wrote the Dean of Faculty (Erskine) 
that he had " a few first principles in religion and politics, 
which, I believe, I would not easily part with," but he would 
not quarrel over superficial distinctions, and the letter is 
too lightly, or loosely,, phrased for anything concerning the 
" first principles "to be gleaned from it. Dugald Stewart 
alleges that, at that time, he had no fixed party views — he 
certainly had no settled party affinities — and Josiah Walker 
tells us "he did not appear to have thought much on such 


subjects, nor very consistently " — " in his political principles 
he was then (the winter of 1786-87) a Jacobite." Burns was 
probably prudent in general society, and gave neither Stewart 
nor Walker an opportunity of plumbing his guiding con- 
victions. His avowed Jacobite sympathies would stamp 
him a Tory, but his active party leanings, if he had any, 
cannot be tested by a dead issue. He wore the Foxite colours, 
and in " Here's to them that's awa," wrote of Fox — 

" It's glide to be merry and wise. 
It's gude to be honest and true ; 
It's gude to support Caledonia's cause, 
And bide by the Buff and_the Blue." 

But he appears to have sported the Buff and Blue, more out 
of good-natured deference to some of his friends than because 
he was by conviction a Whig. In the contest of 1789-90 
for the Dumfries Burghs he describes himself as "a cool 
spectator purely," but, by reason of his hatred of the Duke 
of Queensberry, and contempt for him as a renegade (see 
letter of 9th December to Graham of Fintry), he indirectly 
helped the Tory candidate, Sir James Johnston, although 
his opponent on the Whig side was Captain Miller, the son 
of his landlord. Miller's chief disqualification, in his opinion^ 
was that he had the Duke's support, and that of M'Murdo, 
the ducal chamberlain. He also laboured under the personal 
disadvantages of being "a youth bjMio means above mediocrity 
in his abilities," and of having, it was'said, " a huckster lust 
for shillings, pence, and farthings." It was, however, to 
the Duke (who was also Earl of Drumlanrig) that Bums 
gave his chief attention. He obviously had him in his eye 
when, on 20th December, he wrote Provost Maxwell, of 
Lochmaben : — 

" If at any time you expect a field-day in your town — 
a day when Dukes, Earls, and Knights pay their court to 
weavers, tailors, and cobblers — I should like to know of it 
two or three daxn beforehand. It' is not^that I care three 


skips of a cur-dog for the politics, but I should like to see 
such an exhibition of human nature." 

The declared indifference to " the politics " was appar- 
ently sincere, for if we may judge from his correspondence 
he had, at that time, Pittite leanings along with an access, 
or sharp spasm, of Jacobitism. The counterpart of the 
letter to Maxwell comes after the Whig victory, in the 
second letter to Graham, in verse. He regrets that " The 
Tory ranks are broken " — " that my een were flowing 
bums ! " — but the pith and marrow of the verse-epistle are 
in the unsparing ridicule of the Duke and his henchman 
M'Murdo — 

"I'll sing the zeal Drumlanrig bears, 
Who left the all-important cares 

Of princes and their darlings ! 
And, bent on winning borough-towns, 
Cam' shaking hands wi' wabster-louns, 

And kissin' barefit carlins." 

" M'Murdo and his lovely spovise 
(Th' enamour'd laurels kiss her brows !) 

Led on the Loves and Graces : 
She won each gaping Burgess' heart. 
While he, sub rosa, play'd his part 
Among their wives and lasses." 

Otherwise, the fight is described with the impartiality 
of a disinterested spectator. Although Miller pere is intro- 
duced, there is no mention of the Whig candidate, and no 
reflection upon either his second-rate abilities or his parsimony. 
It is only towards the close that Burns gives voice to his 
personal feelings and his respect for the defeated candidate. 
Sir James Johnston — 

" What Whig but melts for good Sir James — 
Dear to his country by the names 

Friend, Patron, Benefactor." 

When, in 1795-96, the contest came on for the repre- 
sentation of the Stewartry of Kirkcudbright, Burns took a 
decided part. Ho lent the suppoit of his pen to Heron of 
Kerroughtree, Wliig, who was opposed by the Torj', Gordon 


of Balmaghie. Burns had in Heron a personal friend, and 
a man whose pohtics were in accord with his own — an " inde- 
pendent patriot," an " honest man," and an " independent 
commoner." So he describes Heron in the first of three 
election ballads. On Gordon's side were men like the Earl 
of Galloway, and again it is against the candidate's supporters 
that the Poet directs his most galling fire. The target at 
which the following was aimed is obvious — 

' But why should we to Nobles jeuk ; 
And is't against the law that ? 
And even a Lord may be a gowk 
Wi' ribban, star, and a' that. 
For a' that, and a' that. 
Here's Heron yet for a' that ! 
A lord may be a lousy loun, 
Wi' ribban, star, and a' that." 

In this case, furthermore, it must be inferred from what 
Bums wrote Heron, that, in consideration of his party com- 
plexion, he did not overlook a candidate's wider political 
opinions, as compared with the want of principle demon- 
strated by the policy followed by his opponents. He never 
lost sight of the distinction between party and principles. 
He sent Heron the first and second ballads, and said : — 

" To pillory on Parnassus the rank reprobation of 
character, the utter dereliction of all principle, in a profligate 
junto which has not only outraged virtue but violated 
common decency, spurning even hypocrisy as paltry iniquity 
below their daring — to unmask their flagitiousness in the 
broadest day, to deliver such over to their merited fate is 
surely not merely innocent but laudable, is not only propriety 
but virtue. You have already as your auxiliary, the sober 
detestation of mankind on the head of your opponents." 

This is clearly not the language of a partisan, but of a 
man of character, honour, and rectitude. The greater 
questions of pure and constitutional government, and of the 
exercise of royal influence, completely over-shadowed the 
less, that of party defeats or triumphs. His mind, in short, 


like that of the " Laird o' Cockpen," was, in the strictest 
sense, " ta'en up wi' the things o' the State," and the ties 
and ins-and-outs of Whig and Tory were immaterial. The 
direction his interest took may be shown by going back to 
i787. In August of that year, he wrote his famous and 
daring lines at Stirling, in which, with more rancour than 
poetry, he stigmatised the Georgian line as a " race out- 
landish" — " an idiot race to honour lost," that only required 
to be known to be despised. The verse may be unjustifiable, 
but, whatever else may be said of it, it unquestionably gave 
vent to the resentment and bitterness seething in the patriot- 
poet's heart. It won him an unenviable notoriety and, 
according to Chambers, gave offence to some of the more 
fanatical partisans of the Hanoverian monarchy. It must, 
at the same time, be borne in mind that Burns was then 
free and unattached. He had not yet taken Ellisland, 
and it was not until 1789 that he received his Excise com- 
mission. The outburst does not stand alone in his career. 
In 1789, we find him ridicuhng the public thanksgiving for 
King George III.'s recovery from mental derangement, in 
the parody of a psalm — 

" O sing a new song to the Lord 
Make all and every one 
A joyful noise, ev'n for the King, 
His Restoration " — 

and writing Mrs Dunlop on 4th May of the same year : 
" As I am not devoutly attached to a certain monarch, I 
cannot say that my heart ran any risk of bursting on Thurs- 
day was se'ennight (the day of the thanksgiving) with the 
struggling emotions of gratitude. God forgive me for 
speaking evil of dignities ; but I must say that I look on the 
whole business as a solemn farce of fragrant mummery." 
In this letter he enclosed the sketch inscribed to Fox, " Thou 
first of our orators, first of our wits," &c. 

With the passage of another period of two years (1791) 


his interest in France and his sympathies \\ ith her strugghng 
people began to work within him, and to find expression, 
but ^^•ithout ^Wthdrawing his attention from home affairs. 
On the contrar}^ it was in November, 1792, that he subscribed 
for the Edinburgh Gazetteer, and wrote the editor. Captain 
W. Johnston : " Go on, Sir ! Lay bare with undaunted 
heart and steady hand, that horrid mass of corruption called 
politics and statecraft." We next find him writing of Fox 
in " Here's to them that's awa," already quoted from. 

Then came the dangerous crisis in his business career, 
when his political opinions and sentiments were made the 
subjects of an official enquiry. He was obviouslj'^ excited, 
half-distracted, and it is quite probab.1^ that conscience 
quickened his apprehension of an adverse result, and of 
consequent dismissal from the Excise. Taking the matter- 
of-fact view that if Burns had not fallen under the Board's 
suspicion we should, in all likelihood, never have had such 
a compendium of his political principles as we possess in 
his letters to Robert Graham of Fintry, and John Francis 
Erskine of Mar, the incident has an unique interest in 
the present study. Both before and after it occurred he 
declared himself freely, but it brought out his manhood. 
In his defence, he is perfectly frank. Keeping the thought 
of his commission and his dependent family in the back- 
ground, he steered clear of the slough of prevarication and 
equivocation, while clearly realising that, though standing 
on the defensive, he was not at the confessional. His priv-ate 
opinions were no concern of the Board, and in the letters 
mentioned he, while writing of reform with more candour 
than the circumstances called for, prudently confined himself 
in the main, to the general features of the case against him. 

He had been accused of disaffection to the Government, 
and he wrote Graham bluntly that the allegation was a lie. 
He added : "To the British Constitution, on Revolution 
principles, next after my God, I am most devoutly attached." 


That was written in December, 1792, and, the same month^ 
he wrote Mrs Dunlop that thenceforth his hps were sealed 
"as to these unlucky politics." As a matter of fact they 
were not, but that by the way. In January, 1793, he penned 
his longer letter to Graham, disclaiming any pretension to 
appreciating the King's private worth, but — 

. . . " in his public capacity I always adored, and 
always will, with the soundest loyalty, revere the Monarch 
of Great Britain as, to speak in Masonic, the sacred Keystone 
of our Royal Arch Constitution. 

" As to reform principles, I look upon the British Con- 
stitution, as settled at the Revolution, to be the most glorious 
Constitution on earth, or that perhaps the wit of man can 
frame ; and at the same time I think — and you know what 
high and distinguished characters have for some time thought 
so — that we have a good deal deviated from the original 
principles of that Constitution — particularly that an alarming 
system of corruption has pervaded the connection between 
the executive power and the House of Commons. That is 
the truth, and the whole truth, of my reform opinions." 

This passage in the letter, taken in connection with the 
authenticated inquisitorial methods of the Government of 
the day, makes room for a suspicion that the subscription 
to the Gazetteer, and the signed letter to the editor, partly 
quoted above, had been brought against Burns. He refers 
to the subject in the Graham letter. What follows may 
be based upon the episode of the carronades alleged to 
have been sent by the " eccentric and audaciously generous " 
{Wallace-Chambers III., 319) Poet to the French Assembly 
in the spring of '92 : " As to France, I was her enthusiastic 
votary in the beginning of the business. When she came 
to show her old avidity for conquest, in annexing Savoy 
to her dominions, and mvading the rights of Holland, I alter3d 
my sentiments." Disaffection, reform, and over-strong 
sympathy with France, — these appear to have been the 


chief counts in the indictment against Burns. He cleared 
himself, and the only point to which the Board is known 
to have taken exception was his having ventured to think 
at all upon such subjects as corruption and reform. He was, 
perchance, too roughly touching the running sore of official- 
dom. Hence the admonition " that my business was to 
act, not to think ; and whatever might be men and measures, 
it was for me to be silent and obedient." So the comedy 
ended, and exeunt the Board and its instrument, Supervisor- 
General Corbet, into the immortality of Carlylean scorn 
and ridicule (" The Hero as Man of Letters "). 

On 5th January, 1793, Burns wrote Mrs Dunlop that 
the political blast was overblown, but the story of the Board's 
action had gone abroad among his Edinburgh friends, and 
caused them much anxiety. William Nicol wrote " Dear 
Christless Bobbie " an amusing letter of remonstrance in 
February, recommending him to follow " a bright model 
of poUtical conduct, who flourished in the reign of Queen 
Anne, viz., the Vicar of Bray." Official injunction and 
private caution notwithstanding, Burns was incorrigible, 
and only ten days passed before he sent Alexander Cunning- 
ham a " Political Catechism." He describes politics as a 
science demanding nefarious cunning and hypocrisy, in order 
to turn civil politics to our own emolument and that of our 
adherents ; a Minister is an unprincipled fellow, who manages 
to secure a principal place in the administration of affairs ; 
a patriot as one exactly resembling a Minister, except that 
he is out of place. 

Amongst Bums's anxious friends was Erskine of Mar, 
who had heard that he had been dismissed the Service for 
political indiscretions and a charge of republicanism. Erskine, 
a liberal-minded Whig, offered to head a subscription among 
the friends of liberty, to secure the Poet from loss by reason 
of his political integrity. On 13th April, Bums wrote to 
reassure him, to explain the situation, and again to define 


his political creed. He sets forth his tenets as they stood 
in his defence, and, in so far as they touch upon the ground 
covered by the Graham letter, they need not be repeated : 
" I said that whatever might be my sentiments of republics 
ancient or modern, as to Britain, I abjured the idea." He 
next takes up the Constitution, corruption and reform, the 
manly and independent sentiments avowed by him as Poet, 
" which I trust will be found in the man," the family con- 
siderations which had practically driven him into the Govern- 
ment service as ganger, and his haunting fear of being in time 
to come vilified as a man held up to public view as gifted 
with genius, but, unable to support the " borrowed dignity," 
by resources within himself, who " dwindled into a paltry 
Exciseman," &c. After referring to his honest worth and 
" independent British mind," he wrote two of his finest 
passages in prose. In the first he brings forward his children 
as representing the precious stake he had in his country's 
welfare. In the second, he waxes indignantly self-assertive : 

" Does any man tell me that my full efforts can be of 
no service, and that it does not belong to my humble station 
to meddle with the concerns of a nation ? I can tell him, 
that it is on such individuals as I that a nation has to rest, 
both for the hand of support and the eye of intelligence. 
The uninformed mob may swell a nation's bulk, and the titled, 
tinsel, courtly throng may be its feathered ornament, but 
the number of those who are elevated enough in life to reason 
and to reflect, yet low enough to keep clear of the venal 
contagion of a Court — these are a nation's strength." 

Such, indirectly, is the Poet's reply to the caution of 
his friend Mr Corbet, as mouthpiece of the sapient Board 
of Excise, that he was to leave off thinking, and, in silent 
obedience, to confine himself to his beer barrels. The letter 
is a curious compound of political principle, gratitude, self- 
defence, morbidity, self-appraisement, inflation of phrase, 
and right-thinking. In this letter and a later one, probably 


to C'aptaiu Robertson of Luck\ Burns heralds the coming 
of the great Middle Class, as the real depository of national 
power. A true democracy was to him a government by 
tliinking people capable of reasoning, as distinct from mob 

For the sake of continuity of ideas and comparison, 
the Robertson letter, dated 5th December, 179.3, enclosing 
" Scots Wha Hae," written in the previous September, is 
here introduced : — 

■■ In times like these, sir, when our commoners are 
barely able by the glimmering of their own twilight-under- 
standings to scrawl a frank, and when lords are what gentle- 
men would be ashamed to be, to whom shall a sinking country 
call for help ? To the independent country gentleman. 
To him who has too deep a stake in his country not to be 
in earnest for her welfare, and who, in the honest pride of 
man, can view with equal contempt the insolence of office 
and the allurements of corruption." 

Here Burns assorts the independent countrj^ gentleman 
with the class standing for civic stability and intelligence, 
the professional man, the captain of industry, the commercial 
leader, the solid body of citizens coming between the 
ornamental but selfish aristocracy and the uneducated, 
unthinking populace and peasantry. The next year, 
1794, is marked by the poem commonly called, in accord- 
ance with the intention Burns imparted to Mrs Di.nlop, 
" Ode for Washington's Birthday." Anything more bitter 
against George III., or more nearly ajDproaching rank dis- 
loyalty to King and Government, Burns never penned. That 
all his sympathies were with the Americans, and that he 
held the King guilty of attempting a heinous wrong, and of 
entering upon a course leading straight, had it been successful, 
to monstrous oppression, goes now without saying. It is 
nowise surprising that Perry, if the Ode reached him through 
Captain Miller, did not publish it in the Morning Chronicle. 

It thrills with the fiery passion of an ardent lover of liberty ; 
the King is denounced as a tyrant, " the despot of Columbia's 
race," while the freed, victorious Americans are hailed as 
" sons of liberty," " brave as free," who dared maintain 
" the Royalty of Man." The Poet launched his wrath 
against the King as an oppressor and an enemy of freedom, 
and in the quality of manhood he found the only test of 

His regard for these two things. Liberty and Manhood, 
was in the Poet's blood and fibre. When once, accordingly, 
he had thrown ofi^ restraint and abandoned himseK to the 
pent-up tide of devotion to the doublysacred cause of humanity 
and freedom, he became reckless as to whether it dashed 
him against the throne or not. Liberty comes before loyalty, 
humanity before nationality, and it is this, the universal 
element in his song, as in his prose, that carried him above 
all petty distinctions of rank and discrimination between 
nations, that lifted him clear of his personal environment 
and attachments, and gives him to this day his enduring 
place beside the great poets of the world. Who now thinks 
of him as " the peasant Poet," " the Ayrshire ploughman " ? 
Who feels that there is anything strained in assorting him, 
the once obscure ganger of Dumfries, with men of culture, 
great intellect, commanding eloquence and far-seeing states- 
manship, like the elder Pitt and Burke ? Who now sees any 
incongruity in placing him beside the great men of his day ? 
If there be any incongruity, is it not rather in placing them 
beside him ? He was inspired with more than song, and his 
politics will never be understood until, looking past the 
peasant, ploughman, wearer of " hoddin grey," and ganger — 
the several disguises in which he was fated to plod through 
the world — he is seen in his true proportions as an intellectual 
giant, a leader, of clearer vision, and mentally more robust, 
than the vast majority of the sons of Time. 

For the two or three years preceding his death, his 


condition was one of extreme irritation, and his position 
beset with danger. Thinking out the possibiHties of the 
case, it is not difficult to appreciate the courage underlying 
the Washington Ode, with the Address to Caledonia pointing 
like a finger-post to a Scots origin, and to Burns. Had it 
been published and traced, as might easily have happened, 
not only re-examination and dismissal from the Excise, but 
punishment were inevitable. He had presented De Lolme, 
bearing an ambiguous inscription, to Dumfries Library, and, 
according to tradition, he passed Tom Paine 's Common 
Sense and The Rights of Man to a friendly blacksmith 
to keep for him as, if found in his possession, the books would 
work his ruin. There is material enough from which to 
realise how narrow was the path of silence and how strait 
the line of discretion the Government employee of those 
days was compelled to follow if he would escape detection, 
censure, and expulsion from the Service. The Poet had to 
choose between mute prudence and beggary. It is possible, 
as Chambers suggests, that all his democratic writings have 
not come down to us, but a still greater loss is ours. What 
code of political ethics and canons of conduct, what theory 
of the free government of a free people and of the function of 
kingship, what inspiring sketch of subject and civic rights 
and duties, what limning of Liberty set rouna with patriotism, 
official incorruptibility, and deference to humanity and 
progi'ess, might have come from the pen of a Burns whose 
speech was free, we may imagine, but imagine only. He 
was beset on all sides — coerced into silence — and that at the 
very time when his country had most need of guidance 
and his voice might have had the most salutary and telling 
effect upon the venal partisans and sightless pilots who steered 
the ship of State upon the rocks of war and revolution. 

Let us turn to Chambers and Green's Short History. 
The former attributes Burns's high-strung nervous condition 
about this period (1793) to his pent-up anger at the course 


taken by the Government. He thought it ruinous to the 
country ; he and thousands more were being involved in 
distress, and his " bosom was ready to burst with indigo- 
nation," but, a servant of the State, he could not free his 
soul, and bring the wrongdoers to the bar of righteous reason. 
Men were tried for sedition upon the flimsiest evidence, and 
subjected to heavy sentences ; and the reaction at home 
from current events in France " threatened to crush every 
sentiment of liberty in which Great Britain had formerly 
gloried." In September he wrote " Scots Wha Hae," and 
says that it was inspired by Scotland's " glorious struggle 
for freedom, associated with the glowing ideas of some other 
struggles of the same nature, not quite so ancient." These 
could only have been the struggles of America and France, 
the latter of which was then victorious over the enemies of 
the Republic. " The English Ministers," Chambers con- 
tinues, perhaps a little fancifully, " who had declared war 
on the French Repubhcans, and so ruined the still struggling 
Scottish commerce, became, in his imagination, the ancient 
enemies of the old-time allies, France and Scotland. Under 
cover of a fourteenth century battle-song, he was really 
liberating his soul against the Tory tyranny that was opposing 
liberty at home and abroad, and, moreover, striking at the 
comfort of his own fireside." That " Scots Wha Hae " should 
have been made the vehicle of a protest so far-reaching, 
and so incongruous with its more obvious and restricted 
sense, is doubtful ; although, in view of the Poet's own reference 
to later struggles than the Scots War of Independence, it is 
admittedly venturesome to put limits to the association of 
ideas in his mind, especially when agitated by cross-currents 
of emotion reaching him from America, France, and the past 
of his own country. " Tory tyranny " may therefore have 
added fuel to the fire, but Chambers strikes one as being 
too exclusive. 

His view, nevertheless, takes colour from the historian 


Grceii. He both gives details of the corruption against 
which Bums inveighed, and draws an unforgettable portrait 
of the stupid and stubborn King, Sovereign and Prime 
Minister in one, tacking on to it the charge that " the shame 
of the darkest hour of English history lies wholly at his door." 
The remedial measures proposed by Chatham, including 
the repeal of the insane Acts of the King, should next be 
examined. "It is not," said the great and fearless states- 
man, " cancelling a bit of parchment that will win back 
America ; you must respect her fears and resentments." 
His measure having been rejected by the Lords, Burke's 
by the Commons, and the King having spumed a petition 
from the City of London in favour of the Colonies, war began, 
and while it was in progress, at the time of Burgojnie's surrender 
at Saratoga (1777) Chatham declared yet more fearlessly : 
" You cannot conquer America. If I was an American, 
as I am an Englishman, while a foreign troop was landed in 
my country, I never would lay down my arms — never, never, 

Can we wonder at the fierce scorn of the Washington 
Ode ? Both the brain and heart of the Mother Country 
were'.with her children who, it must never be lost sight of, 
were not aliens and foreigners to Bums, but kinsmen and, 
until ^the war broke the bond, fellow-subjects and fellow- 
countrymen. They are now called our cousins, but to this 
day there are Americans disposed to fraternise with Scotsmen 
for Burns's sake. He never wavered in his estimate of 
either the King or the American cause, and a few years after 
peace came, and the United States settled down in republican 
independence, he, by way of a birthday salutation, daringly 
reminded the King in " A Dream " (1787) — 

" Your royal nest, beneath your wing, 
Is e'en right reft an' clouted. 
And now the third part o' the string 
An' less will gang about it 
Than did ae day." 


This, of course, was some years before the Washington Ode, 
and two years before the gaugership. 

Reviewing what has been said, the reconcihation of 
Burns's attitude towards King and Government with a 
broader loyalty and a conception of patriotism which, at 
every point, touches a love of humanity at large, will be 
found complete. If, at first, his sympathies went out to 
the French, he came to sing " Does haughty Gaul invasion 
threat ? " and stirred the whole country when the prospect 
of the threat being carried out rested like a nightmare on the 
United Kingdom. He also joined the local volunteers. 
He felt that the American cause was just, and if that involved 
his taxing the reigning King with tyranny, the fault did not 
lie with him. He maintained the right, and held the rebellion 
justified, which aimed at liberty and justice. That his 
sovereign was one of the combatants was to him a mere 
circumstance, that had no bearing upon the matter in dispute. 
He saw in it a plain question of right and wrong, and if all 
the monarchs of Christendom had been on the side of King 
George, it would not have altered the merits of the American 
claim. This consistent and inseeing verdict upon the Colonial 
problem shows, perhaps more convincingly than anything 
else in his history, Burns's power of concentrating his 
attention upon the essentials of public questions. He fixed 
his eye upon principles, and brushed aside as irrelevant 
every circumstance not entering into the essence of the 
matter before him. 

Historical truth has found its way into fiction, and the 
reader who prefers his facts decked in the more entertaining 
garb, will find them so arrayed, yet in all verity, in the 
American Winston Churchill's romance of " Richard Carvel." 
The particular scene is that in which, when in London, Carvel 
bluntly tells the company he is in, with Fox at the head of 
it, that to his countrymen the question was not one of tea 
or tuppence, but of principle : " You are pushing home 


injustice and tyranny to the millions for the benefit of the 
thousands. For is it not true that the great masses of England 
are against the measures you impose upon us ? Their fight 

is our fight You are heljiing the King to crush freedom 

abroad that he may the more easily break it at home. You 
are committing a crime," both against the British nation 
and against " a people who have in them the pride of your 
own ancestors." As Carvel ceased, the gentlemen of Old 
England, including Fox, drank to a speedy reconciliation 
with America ! There could be no better key to Burns's 
position than Carvel's outline of that taken up by his 

There is only one point in what James Gray, Rector of 
Dumfries Academy, says of the Poet's politics, calling for 
emphasis. His evidence upon reform and the constitution 
is corroborative of Burns's own, and it is here passed over in 
order to reach the subject of revolution as distinct from 
constitutional reform, the necessit}^ of which he often supported 
in conversation " with all the energy of an irresistible 
eloquence." As to revolution, certain societies made a mad 
cry of it from one end of the kingdom to the other, but Burns 
kept aloof. He never joined in their debates ; he never 
supported them or their views in writing ; he had no corres- 
pondence with them. Gray had the best of opportunities 
of knowing Burns's politics — both acts and opinions — and 
that is his judgment. Neither a partisan nor a republican, 
nor a revolutionary, but a lover of liberty, an enemy of 
corruption, a constitutionalist, a monarchist, a patriot, a 
reformer, and a democrat of a most refined type — such was 

" The wretch that would a Tyrant own, 

And the wretch, his true-born brother, 
Viho would set the Mob aboon the Throne, 

May they be damn'd together ! 
Who will not sing ' God save the King ! ' 

Shall hang as high's the steeple ; 
But while we sing ' God save the King ! ' 

We'll ne'er forget the People." 


The verse was written in 1795, when the Poet joined 
the volunteers. It holds a wholesome creed, and Burns 
made no essential addition to it, no known improvement 
upon it. In July, 1796, the end came. 



T T is strange that two men who were contemporaries, and 
J- not only fellow-countrymen but belonging to the same 
shiie, and both of whom rose to the front rank in literature, 
should so long have escaped comparison or even juxtaposition. 
Their names — as far as we know — have never before been 
linked together, and yet they have much in common, not 
only in outward circumstances and surroundings, but in the 
innate characteristic of their work. It is true that Bos well 
was bom twenty years before Burns, but, on the other hand, 
he lived until the year before Burns died, and even then he 
was not an old man. Bos well belonged to an Ayrshire 
famity — now unhappily extinct in direct succession, except 
through the female line — a family of Norman extraction, 
whose claim to have come over with the Conqueror is no 
myth, for the name of Sieur de Bosville is to be found in the 
Domesday Book. Lord Auchinleck, the father of Boswell, 
built a fine mansion-house, which was the third home of the 
Bosvilles or Boswells, in Ayrshire — the first a strong keep 
built high on a rock overhanging the Lugar ; the second, also 
for defence, a castle with thick walls pierced by small windows 
and arrowslits ; and the third a dwelling-house of ample space 
and classic design, and over the doorway the law-lord inscribed 
a Latin quotation, and the old Norman-French motto of the 
family — " Vraye foy " (true faith). 

James Boswell was not born in Ayrshire, but in Edinburgh, 
but the accident of the place of his birth does not debar him 
from being a son of the shire. His boyhood was spent in 
his ancestral home, and there, under the care of a tutor, 
John Dun, he received his elementary education. He went 
to Edinburgh and to Glasgow to college, and while he was 


yet in the early twenties, he made the grand tour considered 
so indispensable in those days for a man of the world and a 
gentleman. He visited Corsica, which at that time was as 
a sealed book to the world at large, and when he returned, 
his Corsican book of travels brought him, not only into notice^ 
but into prominence in the literary world. Thenceforward, 
through all the vicissitudes of his life, and whatever else 
might be his nominal profession, his heart was given over to 
the pursuit of literature. 

Burns was born into a very different world from that 
of the young Bos well. On a January night of dreadful 
storm he first saw the light in a clay biggin' in Alloway, 
not twenty miles from the lordly mansion of Auchinleck. 
All through the years when Boswell was dancing attendance 
upon his divinity (Samuel Johnson) Burns was growing up 
from infancy to the hard, driving work of his boyhood, 
and to the intense, passionate life of his early manhood. There 
is every possibility that Burns and Boswell heard of each 
other. In due course of time the old Laird of Auchinleck 
had died, and James Boswell, his son, reigned in his stead. 
Burns spent much of his life in the neighbouring parish of 
Mauchline, and a laird in one parish would be well known — 
by repute at least — to the farmers in the next. Then Burns ,^ 
with his literary gifts, could not escape the notice of a man 
whose life was also devoted to literature, and the sudden 
fame which fell upon the young Poet with the publication 
of his first book could not fail to reach the house of 
Auchinleck, even if Edmburgh society, into the best 
of which Boswell had the entrh, had not likewise 
opened its doors to the farmer-poet for a while. 
It would have been interesting to have had an opinion each of 
the other, but it seems a case of " how near and yet how far." 
The two men were near in time and place, and they were 
brothers in genius. In literature they stand foremost, each 
in his own place ; in character they have much in common^ 


and also in the quality and st3de of their work. Yet the few 
miles which separated them physically was as nothing as a 
factor in the scheme of their existence to the distance which 
the yellow dross made in their social relations. Had their 
position in life been transposed, the likelihood is that the Poet's 
sweetest songs would have remained unsung, and there is 
no doubt but that the great Biographer's wonderful book 
would have been unwritten. The flowers of literature, like 
the flowers of the garden, blossom from different roots. One 
needs the open ground, and the frosts and snows of winter, 
as well as the sunshine of summer to bring it to perfection, 
while another calls for a sheltered spot, and only the gentle 
coaxing of the spring sunshine makes it unfold its fairest 

It is interesting to notice the similarity in the literary 
style of the two men Bums and Boswell, the one as an exponent 
of poetry and the other of prose. Both men are perfectly 
natural ; they broke away from the artificial school which 
had reigned until their day. They both had their fore- 
runners, but each of them was the great apostle of the new 
cult. Before Bums, the poets sang of country life as if it 
were an idyll of shepherds and shepherdesses, or as if the 
gods and goddesses still walked the earth and interfered with 
the affairs of mortals. Or if not so, they looked as from a 
height and patronised the rustics with their simple lives and 
sordid surroundings. Bums wrote from the heart of things, 
and showed that the light which never was on sea or land 
gilded the horizon of the peasant as well as of the proprietor. 
He showed also that life, health, and youth, independence of 
spirit and the joy of living, were as much to the rustic as to 
the lordling, and although outward ease, wealth and culture 
were all good things, yet they were not of the essentials. 
Withal, Bums wrote so naturally that it does not seem as 
if his medium were a composition at all, but as if Nature 
herself Avere singing. There are many deviations from such 


a high standard, nor could it have been otherwise ; but Burns 
at his best does not so much sing into our hearts as find the 
words for us to sing from our own. Boswell had the same 
gift. Before his time the admired style in prose was that of 
artificial pomposity, such as reached, perhaps, its highest 
exponent in his idol, Johnson himself. " If you were to 
write a tale about little fishes," said Goldsmith to Johnson 
one day, " you would make the little fishes talk like whales." 
It was a whimsical way of speaking, like Goldsmith's whim- 
sical self, yet nevertheless it had a kernel of truth. The 
masters of literature were like great leviathans of the deep, 
swimming about in their majestic way in a sea of rhetoric. 
Boswell came with his intense humanity, touching life at 
every point, noticing everything, enjoying everjrthing, and 
writing it all down, not from a spectator's point of view, but 
from the heart of things, as if the man in the street was giving 
no superficial opinion of life in general, but laying bare the 
secret springs of his own existence. And with all this, 
Boswell's literary style is as natural as that of Bums. He 
has his little eccentricities which were characteristic of the 
man, or as he would have said himself " characteristical," 
but which, if they were lopped off, or improved away, would 
leave the picture the less true— the less complete. Perhaps 
Boswell deserves the more credit for the perfect ease and 
naturalness of his style from the fact that Johnson, whom 
he admired so intensely, was of the older school. Never, 
for a moment, does Boswell imitate Johnson. He was 
always himself— perfectly at ease and perfectly natural. A 
less great man would have imitated the literary idol whom he 
worshipped. Boswell lost himself — as it is said in a higher 
connection— and so found himself. 

Both Bums and Boswell were introspective. He who 
reads Burns may read his life. Its faults and follies are laid 
bare in his songs and poems, its simple joys, its sorrows, his 
speech, his surroundings, his amusements, the religion of 


his day with its formalism and h_ypocrisy, its striving through 
it all to find the better way. Burns's o\\n struggle with his 
better self ^^ e can read — his temptations, his falls — and again 
we are \\ith him in the pure air of the mountain heights of 
his ideals. Bos well, when he wrote the life of Johnson, may 
be said to have written his own life also. When he is in 
doubt he probes the mind of Johnson to know what are his 
beliefs ; when he does wrong, Johnson is his father confessor ; 
when he is happy he confides in his great friend ; when he 
wants appreciation he goes to him, and together they settle 
the problems of living and joyfully tread the highway of 
daily intercourse. The journey through the Hebrides is 
no more a journey through a strange country than it is a 
journey through the minds and hearts of the two travellers. 
In chronicling the sayings and doings of Johnson, Boswell 
all the more revealed himself. 

On one more point Burns and Boswell are alike — that is 
on the strong light which has beaten upon the details of 
their lives. Probably no man has been more judged by his 
life than Burns. It is a natural sequence of the introspective 
quality of his work. To understand thoroughly the poems 
one must know the life of Burns, and to understand his life 
aright one must know his poems. His life was full of high 
aspiration, but while his head was in the clouds his feet 
stumbled and fell, or led him into bog and mire. Boswell's 
eccentricities are as well known as the man himself ; his 
devotion to Johnson has been called sycophancy ; his self- 
revealed temptations and falls are recorded against him ; 
the very complexity of his character has been adjudged to 
him for unrighteousness ; and even his great Life, which 
has found him a place among the Immortals, has been called 
not the work of a genius, but the accidental outcome of 
incipient insanity. 

Both Boswell and Burns have found their niche in the 
Temple of Fame — Burns as Prince of our Scottish poets, and 


Boswell as Prince of Biographers. The Avorld lies at their 
feet, but Ajrrshire modestly lifts her head as she claims them 
both her own. 

It is not often that a genius of any order is succeeded 
by an equally illustrious son. There have been exceptions 
it is true, but such are rare. Boswell, however, was happy 
in the brief companionship of a son who shared his literary 
bent, and whose later career included several of his father's 
unfulfilled ambitions. Boswell twice contested a seat in 
Parliament. Both times he stood for Ayrshire, and both 
times he was defeated, and indeed his fight in each instance 
was a forlorn hope, as the opposition was too strong. His 
son Alexander was only a lad of twenty when he succeeded 
to Auchmleck, but before long he was Member for Ayrshire 
in the Conservative interest. Unlike his father he found 
his happiness in a country life, and he became Colonel of the 
Ayrshire Yeomanry. He was very popular, and seems to 
have inherited his father's ease of manner, his geniality and 
kindliness, with the added dignity and firmness of character 
of his mother, who was Margaret Montgomerie of Lainshaw, 
the daughter of a branch of the Eglinton family — "a penniless 
lass wi' a lang pedigree." After making the grand tour, 
as his father before him, Alexander Boswell settled at 
Auchinleck, and in 1821 he was created a baronet. He 
found one of his greatest^sources of happiness in the library 
at Auchinleck, which was the accumulated treasure-house of 
several generations. He established a little private printing- 
press there, and by its aid he printed many black letter tracts 
from the rare collection of his father and grandfather. He 
himself wrote several booklets, and many stray fragments 
from his pen found their way into the magazines of the period, 
and some of his songs or ballads were so popular as to pass 
into the commonwealth of folk-songs. Like Burns, he 
occasionally took a line or two which floated, as it were, in 
the air of the country-side, and^d to it lines or verses 



which saved them from obHvion. " Jenny dang the Weaver " 

is a case in point. We copy one verse of Sir Alexander's 

version : — 

" At Willie's wedding on the green 
The lassies, bonny witches, 
Were buskit oot in aprons clean 
And snaw-white Sunday mutches. 

Auld Mysie bade the lad's tak' tent. 

But Jock wadna believe her. 
But soon the fool his folly kent, 

For Jenny dang the weaver." 

Alexander Boswell was a great admirer of the Poet, 
perhaps a greater admirer of the Bard than of the Biographer, 
for the fame of Bums was abroad in the land, while it remained 
for a later generation to fix the place of BosweU among the 
literary stars. The career of Sir Alexander was cut short. 
in a duel which arose out of a quarrel over a literary pasquinade. 
In his unhappily, short career, however, he showed the high 
estimation in which he held the Ploughman Poet in being the 
means, almost unaided, in collecting £2000 for the erection 
of the beautiful and classical Monument to Burns which 
stands on the banks of the Doon. In such a way are the 
names of Bums and Boswell united in practical form in the 
eyes of men, while in literature, as we have seen, Robert 
Burn?^ and James Boswell each in his own way was the pioneer 
of a new school — pioneers indeed, but each remaining to thi.« 
dav without a peer. 

H. J. S. 


IT must ever be a source of pride to the Burns Federation 
that the movement for the estabhshment of a Chair 
of Scottish Literature and History in a Scottish University 
originated with one of their members, the late Mr W. Freeland, 
whose whole-hearted enthusiasm, continued through many 
years of difficulty and discouragement, at length culmi- 
nated in the hearty co-operation of kindred Scottish Associa- 
tions, by whose aid the foundation of the necessary endowment 
was laid by voluntary subscriptions amounting in the gross 
to something like £5000. Before this measure of success 
was achieved Mr Freeland had passed away. But the spirit 
with which he had imbued the Federation was not allowed 
to die. Dr William Wallace, who occupied the Presidential 
chair when he was editor of the Glasgow Herald, lent the 
whole weight of his influence to the enterprise, and so Avidened 
the area of national appeal that it at length took practical 
shape in the launching of the National Exhibition scheme 
in Glasgow, which has proved such a financial success that 
the full endowment of the Chair may now be considered an 
accomplished fact. When the scheme came to be considered 
in detail it was thought that the object might be best attained 
by an Exhibition in which the National History, Art, and 
Industry of Scotland should be expounded. Committees 
were therefore formed of men expert in these several spheres. 
In the departments of history and art it was deemed advisable 
that the work should be subdivided. Sub-committees were 
therefore formed to deal with Scottish History and Literature, 
Historical Portraits, and Ethnographical and Historical 
Objects. The first of these was further divided into sections, 
one of which was devoted to Burns MSS., Literature, and 


Relics. The gentlemen selected to supervise the Burns 
section were Colonel Bennett, V.D. ; J. C. Ew ing, D. M'Naught, 
R. Edmiston, jr. ; Rev. James Forrest, and Wm. Wallace, 
LL.D., the last-named being appointed convener. A part 
of the West Gallerj^ was set aside for the Burns exhibits, 
which, bemg someM'hat circumscribed in area, necessarily 
limited the accommodation for exhibits, and compelled the 
committee to make a most careful selection . It was therefore 
resolved that the exhibits should be confined as far as possible 
to articles of Burnsian interest in private hands which had 
seldom or never been exhibited before, and the rarer objects 
which formed part of the collections in public institutions. 
The result was a display of portraits, books, manuscripts, 
and relics which made up in quality and interest for any 
diminution of quantity observable in comparison with the 
other sections of a similar nature. The wall space was 
devoted for the most part to the portraiture of Burns, a 
subject on which there is much public curiosity, though 
it requires more expounding than can conveniently be set 
down in the pages of a catalogue. The centre of attraction 
here was the original Nasmyth bust, lent to the Exhibition 
authorities by the Board of Trustees for the National Galleries 
of Scotland. Efforts were made by the sub-committee to 
secure the Nasmyth replica from the National Portrait 
Gallery, in London, and the Auchindrane replica in the 
possession of Lord Rosebery, so that all three might be seen 
side by side, but the negotiations unfortunately came to 
nothing. Oil canvases of the three sons of the Poet were 
on view, and Colonel De Peyster and Dr Blacklock were also 
similarly represented. The subsidiaries of the Cottage, 
the Brig o' Doon, the Auld Brig o' Ayr, &c., were unfailing 
objects of interest to all classes of visitors, and the collection 
or engravings of Burns, the Burns country, and everything 
hat relates thereto, was the most complete that ever was 
or ever will be brought together. The show of Burns editions 


was as unique as it was unprecedently valuable. No fewer 
than nine copies of the First or Kilmarnock Edition of 1786, 
including Mr M'Naught's uncut copy, were to be seen in the 
show cases, whose aggregate value cannot be put down at less 
than £3000. To the four uncut copies already known — the 
Lamb, the Veitch, the M'Naught, and the Brown — perhaps now 
fall to be added the slightly -cut Hoe and Huth copies, the former 
of which was sold in New York this year for 5800 dollars, 
and the latter in London for £730. The record price on this 
side of the Atlantic was obtained for the Veitch copy, which 
was bought by the Alloway Trustees for £1000, the volume 
being in the original wrappers, with rough edges all round. 
It is probable that not more than thirty or forty copies of 
the Kilmarnock edition are now in existence, which, of course, 
accounts for the high price which even an imperfect copy 
now brings at public auction. In the centre case the most 
perfect specimens obtainable of the succeeding editions 
published during the Poet's life- the Edinburgh, the London, 
the 2-vol. Edinburgh, the Belfast, the Dublin, the Phila- 
delphia, and the New York — were exhibited, some of which are 
almost as rare as the Kilmarnock. Some beautiful examples 
of binding were here shown, notably the volume belonging to 
Mr Weir, of Kildonan. The centre of attraction, however, 
was the identical whistle competed for at Friars' Carse in 
1789 by Craigdarroch and Glenriddel, and immortalised by 
Burns in his poem of " The Whistle." The renowned whistle 
has been in the possession of the Craigdarroch family ever 
since, and was kindly put on exhibition at Glasgow by Miss 
Cutlar-Fergusson . 

The collection of MSS., though small, was very select, 
several of them, indeed, being unsurpassable for quality and 
condition. Amongst the most notable may be mentioned 
" The Death and Dying Words of Poor Mailie," "Sic a wife 
as Willie's wife," " The deil's awa' wi' th' Exciseman," 
the Burns Family's copy of " Holy Willy's Prayer," the 


rardonoU copy of " Tain o" Shanter,"' and two copies of " Scots 
wha hae," one of which has for the first hne, " Scots who 
have wi' Wallace bled." Besides poems and songs, a number 
of holograph letters of the Poet's were exhibited, some of 
them for the first time, and the end cases contained an 
interesting collection of Burns medals and medallions. 

1'liough but a comer of the magnificent display laid out 
ill the Palace of History, the Burns section was not the least 
popular of the sights in the West Gallery. From opening 
to closing day it was visited by admiring crowds, and when 
there was an influx of holiday-makers from the provinces 
there was scarce standing-room in the limited area. The 
sub-committee are to be congratulated on the success which 
attended their efforts, a success which is thus fittingly 
expressed in the official report : — " The collection of 
Bums portraits, engravings, manuscripts, and relics 
was exceptionally complete ; and it is the truth when we 
say that no collection hitherto brought together has equalled 
in importance and unique interest that which was housed in 
the Bums Section of the Palace of History at the Glasgow 
Scottish Exhibition of 1911." 


" ■" I ^ENNYSON described it perfectly in Enoch Arden,''' said the 
■'■ Jamaican, as we sat in the shade of the hotel verandah and 
our eyes roved over the fine natural harbour of Port-Antonio. Screened 
from sea by a low island and fringed with houses and wharves, it 
flamed under the hot sun in blues and greens over depth and shallow, 
or darkened into greys under the trailing veils of passing showers. 
White-winged yachts mirrored themselves in its waters ; banana 
steamers, white painted and awning-clad, came and went, or lay at 
the wharves filling their great holds with the luscious fruit. Dark 
cocoa-nut palms, and stately banana plants hemmed it in with their 
green pkmies and fronds, while close behind westward there rose 
skyward, a thousand feet, a steep wooded ridge. Southward towered 
the Blue Mountains. " Tennyson described it perfectly," and my 
friend recited the lines : — 

" The mountain wooded to the peak, the lawns 
And winding glades high up, like ways to heaven, 
The slender coco's drooping crown of pliunes, 
The lightning flash of insect and of bird. 
The lustre of the long convolvuluses 
That coiled arovind the stately stems," etc. 

" And there ! " he said, as he pointed to the crest of the ridge — " There 
is Springbank. That is the ' cozie biel ' where your Poet, Robert 
Burns, was likely to reside had he followed his chest aboard the ship 
at Greenock, instead of trying his fortune among the ' whunstane 
hearts ' of the Edinburgh gentry." 

We had just arrived direct from Britain over the route Burns 
would have taken. Day by day we saw the sun mount higher till 
he became a flaming tyrant in the sky. Daily the sea became bluer, 
till in the Saragasso it was of the richest ultramarine, on which the 
crimson shafts of sunrise and the rafts of yellow Gulf weed painted 
gorgeous colour schemes. Then one night the Morant Light on the 
eastern end of Jamaica flashed out, her great hills loomed up darkling, 
and we dropped into this paradise in the morning among the strange 
" new sights, new smells, new air " of the Tropics. 

The morrow found us riding through the town among its wooden 
houses and shops and the traffic of its people — mostly colotu-ed — till 
round the basin we struck up the steep to Springbank. Strangely 


iviniiiiscoiit of Eur()|)0!Ui luithoiisc ami pliaiinaf^' \\(M-c tho trees named 
by my guide, from the |)alm hesitle the surf upward past pimento, 
logwood, orange, breadfruit, and mango. Negro women toiled up 
or tripped down on bare feet, stately in gait as duchesses, with their 
burden on the head. Round a turn came a mule with bananas, re- 
calling to my friend the Jamaican story of the old darky, riding up 
such a steep till the stubborn mule, careless of thwacks, stopped dead, 
seemingly for ever, and the rider" was heard to say, chuckling — '" Well ! 
if I ever does have to gwine to Helly, I'd like to go on dis yar mule ! " 
Up the umbrageous lane, past straggling houses of negro cultivators, 
our horses toiled till we arrived on a plateau, on the top whereon stood 
a square wooden house. " There ! " said my friend, " that is Spring- 
bank, now owned by a Stonehaven Scotsman, and built on part of the 
foundations of the great house of the planter, Charles Douglas, an 
Ayrshire man, to whom Burns engaged liiinself, and where he'd have 
resided or frequently been." 

What a home for the Poet of the Bra«s of Ballochmyle and the 
bosky dells of Ayr and Doon ! From the landward rim we saw the 
ridge fall, shaggy with trees, precipitously down hundreds of feet 
into the deep Rio Grande Valley, where Golden Vale lay, part of which 
plantation was then owned by Burns's master. The river itself gleamed 
in silver links among the dark wooded foothills, and these in billow 
on billow rolled up into the great Blue Moiuitain masses, over 7000 
feet high, with white clouds brushing their crests and timibling down 
their glens. Eastward, deep below us, lay the land-locked harbour 
and town of Port-Antonio, with the Caribbean stretching away towards 
Cuba into blue infinitude. As we rode, along the ridge open glades 
and vistas of stately trees reminded one of West of England scenery. 
Passing a fine creeper dangling its fifty feet of green cordage down 
from a tree, like Tennyson's " long convolvuluses," I seized it overhead 
with both hands, and the elastic rope lifted me out of the saddle, 
whereupon, the horse moving, I swung clear to and fro like a penduhun 
till, the creeper breaking, I fell laughing on the grass. Then we 
descended by another route. 

Into the question of the social environment awaiting Biu-ns in 
Jamaica, and its influence on his career, this article cannot enter. 
The writer aims only at depicting the tropical form and colour on 
which the Poet would have gazed with such curious, questioning eyes. 

J. R. 
Glasgow Eveninrj Times, lOtii July, 1911. 


The World's Memorials of Robert Burns (Illustrated). Collected 
and described by Edward Goodwillie. The Waverley Publish- 
ing Coy., Detroit, Michigan. (Paisley : Alex. Gardner.) 

This is a collection of photographs of all the Btu-ns Statues and Memo- 
rials which have been erected to the memory of the Bard since his 
dust was consigned to St. Michael's Chm-chyard, Dumfries. The 
collection is accompanied by descriptive letterpress, giving the par- 
ticulars of each, in the order of their erection. The result is a most 
interesting gallery of sculpture in photograwire, which supplies a 
fe!t want in Bvirnsian ilhistration. The portraits of Burns have had 
«very justice done to them by skilled writers, whose opinions are quoted 
by Mr Goodwillie as fitting introduction to the various likenesses of 
the Poet which have from time to time been executed in marble and 
bronze. Concerning these, Mr Goodwillie gives no opinion of his 
own, wisely contenting himself by quoting what has been said of them 
by others presimiably better qualified to judge of their merits. Speak- 
ing for ourselves, we do not agree with a great deal of what has been 
written about Burns Statues, collectively and individually. They 
are a motley lot- — good, bad, and indifferent — the proportion of 
qualities in each case being too hazardous a subject to tackle within 
the limits of a short review. But we venture to say that some of them 
which have been accorded prominent positions wovild never have 
recommended themselves, even as passable presentments of Burns, 
but for the names of their executants. Every sculptor apparently 
deems it incimibent on him at some period of his career to have a trial 
at Burns, and not a few bm-lesques have been the result. The pages 
of Mr Goodwillie's book have only to be turned over to convince one 
that much bronze and marble have been wasted in many vain attempts 
to immortalise the Bard. To particularise would be invidious and 
tmcalled for in the present connection. For reference purposes, 
Mr Goodwillie's book should be in the hands of every Burns student. 
It contains much information not easily obtainable elsewhere, pre- 
sented in most handy form. The letterpress, we may say, is every- 
where pointed with apt quotations which eloquently testify to Mr 
Ooodwillie's knowledge and appreciation of the lest of Burns'? poetry. 


HlRNS IN ]\1.\S(1M(' ("OSTI'MK. 

Messrs J. W. \\att A: Cov., of 17 London Street, Edinburgli, are in 
a fair way of constituting themselves the leading Burns portraiture 
firm in Scotland. Last year we called attention to their excellent 
etching of Stewart Watson's painting of the Inauguration of Biu-ns 
as Poet Laureate of Cannongate Kilwinning Lodge, in which the Poet 
is one of the principal figures. The excellence of this figure as a 
portrait of the Bard was concealed by its small dimensions and the 
crowd of celebrities in which it formed a mere unit. The idea there- 
fore struck the publishers to isolate and enlarge the figure so as to 
bring its merits into greater prominence. The working-out of the 
idea hsis been most successful, and the result is a portrait of the Bard 
which recalls the Walker & Cousin's engraving more vividly than 
any likeness which has been issued since the date of that most merito- 
rious plate. Some years ago Messrs Watt & Coy. published an 
etching of the Poet by the late George Aikman, an original work of 
exceptional merit, which followed more closely the lines of the original 
Nasmj^th, upon which the engraving of Walker & Cousins was an 
acknowledged improvement. ^^^atson apparently preferred the 
latter when introducing Burns into his famous picture of his Inau- 
guration as Poet Laureate. Being in full dress as Depute Master, 
the new portrait is bound to appeal to the " brethren of the mystic 
tie " everywhere as a most appropriate adornment for the walls of 
their lodge ; and the ordinary Burns Club cannot procure a better 
or more imposing portrait at a moderate outlay. It is the first repro- 
duction of the kind ever published, and comes as a relief from the 
hackneyed presentments of the Bard everj'^vhere presented to the 
eye. It has all the merits of the Walker & Cousins at less than a 
tenth of the cost, and is, moreover, a full-length with original pose. 
We cordially recommend it to all desirous of possessing a new and 
perfectly reliable portrait of Burns. 

The Land of Burns : Malchline — Town and Distkict. Written 
and published by John Taylor Gibb, Mauchline. 

Mr Gibb has been long known as an authority on the topography 
of Mauchline as well as the Burnsiana of the district down to its minutest 
detail. On more than one occasion he has contributed most interest- 
ing and instructive articles on his favourite theme to the columns of 
the Chronicle, and the cordial reception accorded to these have, we 


ventvire to guess, prompted him to extend and preserve them in the 
beautiful brochure issued from the Glasgow press in the spring of the 
present year. That he had a good subject to begin with goes without 
saying, and that he has made the best